How to Get Healthier and Longer Hair

Hello, frenz and Happy Humpday!! These weeks have been soaring by for me lately but it's okay because it makes us that much closer to Halloween – the land of horror movies and costumes and fun wigs!

Speaking of wigs and hair, today I wanted to talk about some of the ways that I got my hair back to good health and grew it a little longer. I've noticed recently how long it has gotten, although it's still not as near as long as I want it. I've only been doing these methods for about five months, but they really seem to work — so I thought it would be fun to share some of the things I did to make my hair healthy and longer! Let's just jump right into this, shall we?!

First, let me give you a little background on my hair. I've been bleaching and using boxed dyes since I was a preteen (over 10 years). I've gone from platinum white, the whole way to black and every color in between. I've had periods of time where it would be incredibly long, and then times that I would cut it insanely short. Most of the time with my hair short was spent researching how to grow my hair back out. It's been a lifelong struggle but I think I finally found some secret weapons to healthy and longer hair!

WENT BACK TO NATURAL HAIR
Last winter, I dyed my hair from blonde to brown to red. I hated it after three weeks and desperately wanted my golden locks back. I went to my local Rite Aid and purchased the Color Oops Color Stripper // $9.99, extra strength, just in case. It was a miracle in a bottle as all of the yucky red and brown tones were removed from my hair in as little as an hour. The color left on my head was a yellow, orange blonde so I just threw a dark blonde box dye over it and called it a day.

CEASE HEAT/CHEMICAL USE
This is an absolute no brainer when wanting to grow your hair out. After using the bit of chemicals to get my hair close to my natural color, I put a halt to hair coloring and processing. Going back to your natural color relieves the pain of walking around with yucky colored hair and kind of gives you a fresh dew-over (pun intended!) My hair has decent texture and a bit of life to it, so I'm not too hesitant on leaving the heat tools in my drawer. There are a lot of different ways to style your hair without heat, if you feel the need to style it!

GET A SCALP MASSAGE
Why not give yourself a relaxing scalp massage at the end of the day? During my hair growing research, I stumbled upon the method of giving yourself a scalp massage to circulate the blood on your scalp and stimulate the hair follicles, thus causing your hair to grow. I give myself "scratchies" because I like my head being scratched and it works the same as a massage. Not only does this make your hair grow, but it's also soooo relaxing!

STOP WASHING SO FREQUENTLY
It sounds gross, but you'll be able to tell a difference in your hair in as little as a few weeks. Washing your hair every day strips the essential oils off of your scalp and out of your hair. Those essential oils are essential for a reason, as they leave your hair naturally moisturized. I wash once every four or five days, depending on the activities I've been doing. I'm able to do that because I don't build up a lot of oil in a short period of time, so if you're more oily, I suggest washing every other day or until your oil regulates and you can go longer.

SWITCH TO SULFATE-FREE SHAMPOO
Using a sulfate-free shampoo makes your hair healthier and smoother because it doesn't use harsh chemicals to cleanse the hair, leaving it noticeably healthier. I currently use the Suave Professionals Color Protectant Shampoo // $1.99 and Renpure Originals Coconut Cream Conditioner // $3.98 for the days that I wash my hair.When I bought the Suave shampoo, I was under the impression that it was sulfate-free (the internet lied to me). It turns out that it is NOT sulfate-free, but it does have less sulfate concentration. It still leaves your hair feeling silky and moisturized.

ONLY WASH THE SCALP
This is something that I believe has helped my hair immensely. By only washing your scalp, you're not stripping your ends of the oils that were combed through from your scalp. Instead, you're cleansing the scalp of excess oil and dirt while also letting the remaining shampoo gently cleanse the ends as you rinse.

FOCUS CONDITIONER ON ENDS
When applying your conditioner, focus the product more on the ends and work your way up. This gives your ends a little bit of extra nourishment. Also, if you work too much product too far up, it can weigh down your hair and leave your scalp oily.

RINSE HAIR IN COOL WATER
Hot water can pull the moisture out of your hair leaving it dry and lifeless. By rinsing with cool to lukewarm water, you're letting the moisture set into your hair rather than being stripped out. Try to refrain from over rinsing the conditioning product out of your hair.

USE A T-SHIRT TO DRY
I heard Nicole Guerriero mention this in one of her videos years ago and it's been something that has always stuck with me. Using a cotton t-shirt rather than a towel to dry your hair can be beneficial, in that a t-shirt isn't as dense or heavy as a towel. As you pull at and squeeze your hair, a towel has more density to tug and pull at split ends, causing your hair to break as you're drying it. A t-shirt is made of a softer material and will be more gentle on your hair!

LEAVE IN CONDITIONER & OIL
After every wash, I always make sure to add a leave-in conditioner and oil to the ends of my hair to give them some extra moisture. The ends of your hair can become dry and break off, not allowing your hair to grow. My leave-in conditioner of choice is Garnier Fructis Sleek-n-Shine // $3.37. I've used it for years and it leaves my hair soft, without the extra weight.I also currently use a tiny amount (a little goes a long way) of Louanna 100% Pure Coconut Oil // $3.68 on my ends.Don't overdo it with the coconut oil, or else you'll look like an oil spill happened on your head. It gives extra moisture to your ends while also protecting against split ends!

USE A DRY SHAMPOO
For the days in between washing, I'll usually use a dry shampoo. I've experimented with a few different brands and formulas, but have recently been in love with the Not Your Mother's Beach Babe Texturizing Dry Shampoo // $4.84.It leaves your hair feeling like a fresh wash, gives it some beachy texture and it smells like a tropical vacation. It also doesn't leave any white residue, which is a huge bonus.

Well, there you have it — these are the methods that I've found to really help keep my hair healthy and make it grow. Let me know in the comments if you've tried any of these and if they work for you. What are some of your favorite methods to healthy hair? I'd love to hear them!

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FIRST IMPRESSION FRIDAY: e.l.f. Duo Eyebrow Kit

Hello, frenz and happy FriYAY!!! If you read my last post, you would know that I am changing up my blog. What I've come to decide is that I like makeup and that's what I want to write about. I apologize for all the confusion that has come with the change up, but makeup is something I love and it's something I want to pursue. I hope you all stick around to read my new content! As you can tell by the title, today is First Impression Friday, so let's jump right into this, shall we?

Let's talk about brows. Brows shape your face and they can either make or break your look. I've been fussing with my brows for YEARS and have just recently learned what works well for me and what doesn't. Now for the record, I don't have one set brow product. I use Maybelline's Nude eye shadow palette for my brows. Go ahead and judge me. The only brow product I've found that I truly love is the Anasatasia Beverly Hills Brow Wiz, but I went through it super quick and I lack the bread to repurchase. So since then, I've been experimenting with different brow products, as well as shadows, to give me the perfect brow.

So today, I'm going to talk about a very popular brow product, E.LF.'s Duo Eyebrow Kit.image3
This product has been in my collection since about this time last year. I've wanted to try it forever, but could never find the blonde shade that I needed. I once tried the dark shades and I immediately regretted that decision and it turned me off to the product for some time. But alas, my local Wal-Mart had the blonde shade in stock and I purchased it for a measly $3…only to let it sit in my collection. Yesterday, I stumbled upon it and thought to give it a go.

This product is a duo, with a pigmented wax and a powder. The wax is a darker shade than the powder. It has more of a red undertone, whereas the powder is more ashy, with a cooler undertone. It comes in a tiny compact with a mirror attached to the inside top of the lid. Also included is a mini double-ended applicator; one side being an angled brush and the other being a small blending brush.image2
I chose not to use the applicator that came with it and, instead, reached for my E.L.F. angled brush, mainly because it has a longer handle and it's what I always use to fill in my brows.

By just looking at the pigmented wax, you wouldn't think it would be any different from their darker shades, but upon swatching, you can see that it is a much lighter brown, almost like a dirty natural blonde.image1 (2)

When applying the wax, it goes on very smooth and was more pigmented than I had anticipated. It worked well and filled in the part of my brows that were fuller, but the formula's consistency made it hard to fill in the sparse parts of my brows. It has a rather oily consistency and smudged easily. Wiping away the edges of my brow with my finger smudged the ends entirely. I couldn't really reach the product into the arch of my brow where I needed more coverage. I tried going in with the powder portion and it did a decent job at mattfying the wax, but was no good at giving my arch coverage.

Once I got the outer part of my brows filled in as much as I could, I started working on the inner part. My brows have been over-plucked for years (currently trying to grow them back), so I hardly have any hair on the inner brow, and the hair that I do have is a very light blonde. Again, the consistency gave me trouble on giving the illusion that I had full brows in the front. Even when applying the wax and blending it out, you could see the distinct space between where my eyebrow started and the "illusion" begins. It was nearly impossible to make hairlike strokes with the wax, leaving my brows blocky and thick. Again, going in with the powder only helped to mattify the wax, but didn't give me the coverage and illusion I desired. I ended up just coating my brows in the wax the best that I could, and then put the powder over it to try to make them appear less oily.

I wore this product for a good eight to ten hours before taking it off. It did a fairly good job at keeping my brows in place where I had hair, but as the day went on, you could see the sparseness of product in the inner part of my brow. It seemed like the mattifying effect that the powder gave completely wore off as the day went on and as my skin became more oily. If you would've seen me, you wouldn't have thought that I was a beauty blogger or that I had any clue what I was doing with a brow product. Looking in the mirror at the end of the day, my brows looked sparse, discolored and oily.

I really wanted this product to work out. E.L.F. is one of my favorite drugstore lines. They're inexpensive, cruelty-free and most of their products work fantastically for me. This duo eyebrow kit, however, was a complete bust…but I'm not giving up hope.

I want to try it again with the powder I currently use to fill in my brows and see if that makes much of a difference. I really want to like this product and find a way to make it work. Perhaps if you have fuller brows, this would work better for you. Like I said previously, the consistency didn't allow me to create the illusion of thick and full brows where my hair was more sparse. I wanted to take pictures of the inconsistency in color, but unfortunately, it wasn't showing up on camera…but it was a disaster in person.

Let me know in the comments if this product works for you and if you have any recommendations of how to make it work — I would LOVE to hear them. I hope you all have a fantastic weekend!rl

 

My Top 10 Favorite Shows on Netflix

Hello frenz! Welcome back! A few weeks ago, my boyfriend's mom gave us her Netflix account to use. Since then, we've done nothing but binge watch our favorite (and some new) shows. Below are my top 10 favorites on Netflix. I hope you guys enjoy these as much as I do!

10. Trailer Park Boys
This has been on Netflix FOREVER and, to be honest, I wasn't a fan until recently. It follows around three main characters' shenanigans while living at a trailer park in Canada. Between trying to grow and sell dope, staying out of jail and pulling shopping carts out of a lake to sell, this show will keep you entertained and make you laugh for hours.

9. Criminal Minds
I've been a fan of this show since I was a teenager and I can't help but binge watch it all day, every day. This show follows an FBI team, known as the Behavioral Analysis Unit. They work on cases involving anything from rapists to murderers to terrorists. Their job is essentially to give a criminal profile based on behavior in order to find the "unsub" (unknown subject). It will for sure keep you on your toes — and some episodes are actually really creepy.

8. iZombie
I've just started watching this show, and I'm obsessed. The main character is a doctor who became infected and is now a brain-hungry zombie. She now works in the morgue and helps a local detective solve crimes…by eating the brains of the victims and getting visions of how they were killed. It's gory enough for a TV drama, with some good comedy aspects, too.

7. Supernatural
This show, again, I've been a fan of for ages. It follows two brothers who are, basically, demon slayers. There's a whole backstory, which I'll let you learn on your own (I don't want to ruin it!). Each episode has a level of creep factor, along with two gorgeous men to look at.

6. It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia
I watched all the seasons of this show in two weeks. It's too funny. It follows five friends' antics in a bar that they all own together. You can't expect a show with Danny Devito and Charlie Day not to be hilarious.

5. What the Health
This documentary is new to Netflix. I really wish I could scream from the rooftops how powerful this film is. It talks about meat and dairy and what's actually in our food. It's an eye opener and I recommend everyone to watch it.

4. The Office
How could I pass up Steve Carrell as Michael Scott? I'm not a huge fan of the British version, but the US version is enough to make me pee my pants. It follows the everyday life of people who work at a paper company in Scranton, Pennsylvania (ayooo). Their boss might be a narcissist and certifiably insane, but you can't pass it up if you're looking for a laugh.

3. An Idiot Abroad
My boyfriend was the one to introduce me to this one and with much hesitation, I will admit that I enjoy it. Ricky Gervais sends his idiot friend to different countries and basically, you just watch him make a fool out of himself, because he just doesn't know anything about the country or culture. I could watch it for days.

2. To the Bone
This film was extraordinary. Lilly Collins has really outdone herself with this role — an anorexic 20 year old with a dysfunctional family. It follows her, and other people, in a group home treatment for eating disorders. Keanu Reeves also stars as a doctor. It really brings to light the struggle that those with this disease face.

1. Bill Nye Saves the World
Bill Nye has been my hero since I was a kid. He's single handily taught me everything I know about science. His new show is more adult friendly and he talks about REAL issues in this world that need to be addressed, like climate change and alternative medicine. I'm making a petition to make Bill Nye president.

There are plenty of other shows on the beloved Netflix that are incredible. These are just a few that I can't get enough of. Feel free to share some of your favorites in the comments!

Goals for the Rest of 2017

Hello frenz! Welcome back to whatever this blog has come to. I've been bored with my blog lately, so I thought about doing something a little different. I've seen these done before and I think it's fabulous to share goals with likeminded individuals. I've tried to keep this post upbeat, but to be honest, I haven't been so positive lately. So here goes – my goal list for the rest of 2017.

GET A JOB
I've been unemployed since March, so that makes a total of almost five months now. I was planning to join the Air Force, but realized that I was leaving too much behind (also I'm too old to be tricked by military schemes). I put that goal behind me and now I have another – to find a job. Not only do I need one to pay my bills and buy food, but I'm tired of not working. Every day since losing my job has turned into a blur and I'm ready to be productive again.

SAVE MONEY
I really don't want to live in Pennsylvania anymore. It's poor and highly taxed. The weather sucks and my town should be known as Drug and Crime Central. By getting a decent (and steady) paycheck from accomplishing Goal #1, I hope to be able to start saving enough money to get the hell out of here within the next two years.

GAIN A FOLLOWING
I want to write for a living, I've known that for some time now. I want to be a full time writer or even a full time blogger at some point. I want to get my blog out there and create a name for myself. I need to start creating my empire.

LIVE STRESS FREE
I don't think I've ever had this amount of stress in my life. I have nervous breakdowns almost every day, mostly due to lack of money. I can't afford things I want and need. I want to live stress free again. I want to be able to enjoy life and wake up happy.

BEGIN SFX MAKEUP
This is something I've wanted to do for some time, but haven't had the money or want to invest the time in. But Halloween is coming up and you best believe I want to scare all the kiddos on the block this year.

MAINTAIN A HEALTHY LIFE
Since money has been so tight recently, I've only been eating once a day and skipping the gym to conserve gas. I need to get back into the routine of working out regularly and eating enough so I don't waste away into nothing. It's easier said than done when you have $-33 to your name.

TAKE ANOTHER TRIP TO FL
My trip to Florida at the beginning of July was so incredible. Seeing and spending time with my family meant so much to me. I want to make it into a regular visit.

READ MORE
I really do enjoy reading, but I lack the interest to do anything other than nap (thanks depression). I also find myself reading the words but daydreaming about something else, which leads me to reading the same paragraph ten times. I have so many books but have only read maybe five of them. I'd like to read them all and then add to my collection.

BUY MORE MAKEUP PRODUCTS
It sounds a little materialistic but I'm a sucker when it comes to makeup. I watch and read tons of reviews on new products and I want them all…but lack the dough to get them. I haven't purchased any new makeup in at least a year, and it's breaking my heart.

GIVE GIFTS AT CHRISTMAS
Last Christmas was horrible. I wasn't able to get anything for anyone and it made me feel so low. Christmas is my second favorite holiday and I love giving to others. I want to be able to give to everyone I can this year, and even to the less fortunate. I miss having the means to be generous.

BE GENUINELY HAPPY
I haven't been happy in such a long time, and I really miss the feeling of enjoying life. I need to get that feeling back for my own sanity.

I'm keeping this list as my own little time capsule of things I want to accomplish. I hope to look back in January 2018 to have accomplished all of these and then some. Here's to my future endeavors.

The Importance of Wearing Sunscreen

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‘Tis the season for bikinis, days at the beach and the inevitable and always dreadful sunburn. Every year, the same thing. You go out into the sun for a day (or a few hours), forget to apply a sunscreen and by the end of the day, you look and feel like a burnt piece of plastic. The days to come until the burn subsides are grueling and you can’t help but hate yourself for not taking the time to apply sunscreen. When I was a kid, I didn’t care about sunscreen. I never burned and I always had a fabulous tan. But now, about ten years later, it’s like my skin did a complete 180. I no longer tan; I only burn. I think to myself while being in the sun that I want a tan and that sunscreen would prevent me from getting one — so I never used it. It took me 23 years, but I have finally understood the reason for sunscreen and why we all should be using it.

Skin is the largest organ on the body, coming in at a whopping 16% of a our total body weight. It covers your blood vessels, nerves and organs, as well as protecting your body against dangerous bacteria. We all know the basic ways to have healthy skin — keep it clean, hydrated and protected from the sun. But exactly why do we have to protect it from the sun? When your skin is exposed to the sun, it creates melanin — a chemical produced from your skin to naturally protect it from harmful UV radiation from the sun. There are two types of ultraviolet radiation — UVA and UVB. While both are harmful, UVB rays are the worst for your skin to be exposed to. Sunburns occur when your skin is exposed to more UV rays than the level of melanin your skin produces. The lighter your complexion, the less melanin your skin will produce and it’s more likely for you to burn. Darker complexions can be effected by harmful UV rays, too. Darker complexions have a higher level of melanin in the skin, which acts as a natural protectant to UV rays and is what causes the skin to be darker. While this may protect against sunburns, it doesn’t necessarily protect against benign tumors or skin cancer.

Too much sun exposure on your skin can damage it irreversibly. Ultraviolet rays damage a tissue in our skin known as elastin, which, you guessed it, keeps our skin elastic. When that tissue is damaged repeatedly over time, it can cause the skin to lose elasticity and become leathery. Your skin can begin to bruise easily and even become deteriorated. Although the effects of sun exposure won’t be apparent while you’re young, it can become very noticeable later in life. This is why sunscreen is so important to lifelong healthy skin.

Sunscreen contains ingredients that block the ultraviolet radiation from reaching your skin. The higher the SPF, or Sun Protection Factor, contained in the sunscreen, the more percentage of UV rays are blocked. There can be damage to the skin without the occurrence of a sunburn, which is why it is better to use a sunscreen that has broad spectrum ingredients, which protect from both UVA and UVB rays. Although higher SPFs offer more protection, no sunscreen should be expected to exceed a two hour wear without reapplication. If you’re spending a day at the beach, pool or you work outdoors, be sure to use a water-resistant broad spectrum sunscreen that will stay on your skin — and be sure to reapply generously. There are tons of low SPF moisturizers available for every day wear, as well.

There are some common myths out there about sunscreen, like you should only wear it when the sun is out or that it won’t allow your skin to tan. These are false. Did you know that 40% of the sun’s ultraviolet rays reach Earth on very cloudy days? Your skin can still be damaged even if it’s not in direct exposure with the sun. You can actually get a little color on some of the cloudiest of days! This leads me right into my next myth bust, you can become tan using sunscreen. The SPF in sunscreen only protects your skin from burning, not tanning. For example, a sunscreen with SPF 15 means that if you begin to burn after ten minutes, it will provide you with 150 minutes of protection. It is possible to protect your skin and get that beautiful sun kissed tan!

If you don’t want to bake your skin in the sun just for a bronzed look, you can always try alternative tanning. There are various types of fake tans, like lotions, spray tans and the self tans that you can do in the comfort of your own bathroom. One of my personal favorites is the Malibu Tan Hemp Golden Glow Skin Firming Bronzing Moisturizer.

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You can purchase it at Walmart or Sally’s Beauty Supply Store and it’ll run you anything from $6-$23, depending on the size you want to purchase. The formula of it is extremely moisturizing and it smells like a tropical vacation. It’s also cruelty-free! It takes about a week to build up a nice base, but if used consistently, you will have a noticeable and beautiful tan. It will make little crevasses, like your cuticles and between your fingers/toes a little orange, so be sure to wash your hands and feet after applying, unless your goal was to be Oompa Loompa orange — in that case, rock it, sister.

In this heat, it’s almost impossible to resist spending the day out and about. Whether you’re going shopping, spending the day by the pool or working outdoors, remember that your skin needs some extra protection. Spend that extra ten minutes applying sunscreen. Future you will appreciate it. Be safe. Drink your water and stay cool.

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Sources: webmd.com, howthingswork.org, medlineplus.org

[Photo Credit: Pixabay]

Letting Go of Toxic Thoughts

toxic thoughts

We all have toxic or negative thoughts, whether it’s about ourselves, other people or something we don’t fancy doing. Sometimes these thoughts can overpower all of the positive ones, and as a result we’re left feeling mentally and emotionally drained. But how do we stop seeing the negative and start noticing the positive side to life? That’s where mind control comes in. No, not the type that David Blaine does on Las Vegas sidewalks; I’m talking about controlling our own minds to turn toxic thoughts into positive thoughts.

Sometimes I get overwhelming thoughts about myself. My mind makes me feel that I’m not good at anything and sometimes, it even goes as far as making me feel that the world would be better off without me. I’m a generally optimistic person, I just have a few issues with anxiety…so why do I feel this way? Negative or toxic thinking usually begins with a mistake I’ve made that I feel overly embarrassed for, and then it turns into thinking about everything I’ve ever done wrong. If you think like this too, there is a way to control it. You simply talk yourself out of it. It sounds crazy, I know, but it’s really that simple. Let yourself make a mistake. Acknowledge said mistake, learn how to do better next time, and move on. Don’t beat yourself up for it. You’re human. This is how you grow and become better. This is especially true if you’re a toxic thinker in relationships. Talk to your significant other about it. Sometimes their reassurance is all you need to convince yourself that it’s okay to be human. This goes hand in hand with perfectionism, which is a main player in my toxic thoughts.

“I want so bad to be perfect although I know perfect does not exist.”

Turning toxic thoughts into positive thoughts can be grueling when you’re not naturally an optimistic person, but sometimes that’s all it takes to turn your day around. It’s an old saying, but try to look on the bright side. Yeah, things might be hard at work or you’re having a crap day, but there’s always a positive. Spilled your coffee in your car? There’s a reason to buy that Starbucks coffee that you never get to have, and a reason to stop the procrastination of cleaning your car. Is your boss on your case really hard today? Remember that all days come to an end. It’s so easy to jump to toxic thinking when something bad happens. It’s easy to think that one disaster can ruin your whole day; but it can get better when you deal with a problem when it happens, and then move on. Deal with your emotions in the moment rather than letting them boil all day until the inevitable eruption.

Stop taking everything so personally. This is something I’ve struggled with and I am just now learning how to handle. I’m a people pleaser, especially when it comes to a loved one. If my boyfriend wakes up grumpy, I automatically assume it’s because of me. When he loses his temper at a video game, I get nervous because I don’t want him upset or mad at me. I’m familiar with the fact that it has nothing to do with me, but my toxic thoughts lead me to think that I did something wrong. If you’re like this too, stop it. Stop it right now. Not everything is a personal attack at you. Learn to understand the difference between a person who is grumpy at the world and a person who is grumpy at you. Walk away or ignore this behavior in your loved one to save yourself time and energy.

Sometimes we do have bad days where everything is happening all at once and we can’t help but become overwhelmed and frustrated. I’m not denying that days like this exist. I’m also not denying that anxiety and toxic thinking feed off of each other. What I do know is that you can talk yourself out of any emotion as long as you acknowledge it, deal with it and move forward. Your mind likes to play a lot of tricks on you. Start playing tricks back.

Until next time, XO.

[Photo Credit: Pixabay]

Gaining Confidence in Today’s World

confidence

Let’s face it, we’re all self conscious about something. Whether you think your nose is too big for your face or you got that belly with some love handles, we all have something we wish we could change. And if we can’t change it, we try our damnedest to cover it at all costs. But ladies, why do we do this? If we can’t love our bodies enough to show it off, then who will? Let’s talk about confidence.

Confidence is a hard thing to have in today’s world. With thousands of beautiful women surrounding us on social media and television, it’s difficult to look at these beautiful women day in and day out and not wish you looked like them. But have no fear, I’m here to tell you that you — yes, you, are just as beautiful. I know, I know, you hear and see this phrase everywhere since the much needed Body Positivity Movement, as I like to call it. Gaining confidence has become a bit of a cliche, but it’s something we all need to feel good in our daily lives.

This post may be reeking of body positivity, but that’s not what I’m here to preach. Yes, you should love your body no matter your size, but you should also love your body enough to take care of it properly. You should be exercising regularly, not to lose weight but to clear your mind and get those endorphins pumping — and sure, losing weight or gaining muscle tone along with it wouldn’t be a terrible thing. You should love your body enough to not poison it with processed foods, sugars, alcohol, etc… You should practice good and healthy skin care. All of these things can help you feel confident, because they make you feel (and look) good. When you treat your body with respect and nourish it from the inside, it will shine right on through to the outside. When you look good, you feel good; right?

Now enough with my preaching about a healthy life — if you want to feel confident, you need to act like the boss ass bitch that you are. Don’t think about your flaws, flaunt them. Wear that crop top even though you have that belly. If someone else doesn’t like it, well they can simply not look. Stop basing your life on what other people may or may not be thinking about you because chances are, they didn’t even notice that your belly hangs a little bit over your shorts or that your teeth are a little wonky. Believe me, I know it’s hard to wear that bikini in fear of being judged, but what is someone going to say to you that you haven’t already told yourself? Own your body. Rock those hips or lack thereof. Love and respect your body the way it is right now.

You are a beautiful creature of Earth, it’s time you realize that.

So we talked about how to feel good with our bodies, but what about our personalities? Sometimes we have personality traits that we just can’t stand. For example, I talk really fast and stumble over my words 95% of the time that I speak. It makes me feel stupid, uneducated and like no one ever wants to conversate with me, but, in all honesty, that’s how I make myself feel. Most of the time no one even notices (or they’re polite enough not to point it out), or instead, I notice them fumble their words. You have to remember that everyone has something they don’t like about themselves, whether they talk about it or not. They’re not things we can help, so we need to learn to accept ourselves the way we are. If we don’t accept ourselves for who we are, who else will?

Confidence isn’t about getting to a certain point and saying, “this is good enough.”  You should never settle for good enough. You should always be looking for ways to improve to become the best version of yourself. Become more outgoing and ask that cute guy at the coffee shop out for a drink. Do things you’ve never dreamed of doing — accomplishing goals or overcoming fears makes you feel phenomenal and can boost your self confidence right into outer space.

If you’re trying to gain confidence and become more comfortable with yourself, the only true way is self love and acceptance. You are who you are. We, as women and a society, need to recognize our worth. You are special. You are worth it. And if it makes you feel better, remember that those models and actresses on the internet and television struggle with something they don’t like about themselves, too. They’re just a little better at hiding it.

Until next time, xo.

[Photo Credit: Pixabay]