Tag Archives: sparkle

Go for the Goosebumps.

“Follow your passion. It will lead to your purpose.” -Oprah

How many times have you sat around and thought about what you are passionate about? Like really truly thought about it? I can tell you this….up until about five years ago I NEVER thought about it.

I mean, what the heck could I be passionate about? At that time I was an alcoholic living off of fast food and White Russians every day. I had given up basically all hobbies and things I used to enjoy doing….so what were my passions? The funny thing was…I wouldn’t discover my greatest passion on my own; it surfaced unexpectedly.

That time of my life was a little over five years ago. Fast forward to today and I can tell you that I have never been as passionate about anything in the history of life as I am about my career as an online health and wellness coach. If you follow me on social media, I am guessing you can tell that I am passionate AF about it, and since lately I have been getting more questions than ever about what I do I figured today was the perfect day to share a little more about why this business sets my soul on fire and why I truly believe it can change anyone’s life.

I believe in what I do SO MUCH because of one big reason: it changed MY life, and because of that I know it has the power to change so many other lives, too.

I started this coaching thing with ZERO desire to make anything of it. To me, I would get the special savings discount and then quit. But something crazy happened…..I ended up losing almost 50 pounds during my first two months as a “silent” coach and was so blown away with how I felt that I wanted to pay it forward and help others feel the same way. I didn’t want to be silent anymore….I wanted to shout from the rooftops and make a difference to everyone I possibly could. I knew it was my PURPOSE to do this.

Screen Shot 2018-04-06 at 12.20.46 PM.jpg

Left: The day I became a coach. Right: Two Months and 47.5 lbs later

What I do isn’t your typical coaching gig. We are really more like fitness influencers or cheerleaders, as we use social media and our experience to help influence others to live their best life, encouraging them and supporting them along the way. While I have multiple certifications under my belt to help with how I can assist my clients, most coaches don’t, nor do they need to. The company I partner with has nutritionalists who determine all the meal plans and nutritional info anyone could need, and we have fitness experts to create all the workouts. Our job is to connect our clients with the best options for them based on their individual goals and needs. After that, how we help can differ….it all depends what the client wants.

I have some clients that thrive in my monthly online bootcamps, groups that differ in theme and length and encourage results. Others prefer one on one support through email or text. Some of my clients I meet up with regularly to help support them with things like grocery shopping and meal prep. Everyone is different, so how I help is different, but regardless of the client, there is one common thing: we are working toward achieving some kind of result. THIS is what drives me.

I think back to the end of my first online group and the moment I stepped on the scale to see that I was 47.5 lbs lighter. I remember the goosebumps….the tears….the feeling of “Oh my gosh….I did it!” Those feelings….THAT is what I am working to help each of my clients achieve. They may not be driven by weight loss, but they are driven by something that can get them those feelings of accomplishment and goosebumps like I have.

Let me tell you a little something something…..the feeling you get when someone hits their goal….seeing their eyes light up….feeling that pride…..there are few feelings in this world that can best that. Imagine getting to see that happen every single day and get paid to do it? That’s what I do.  That’s what being a coach is all about.

Sure, there are lots of other amazing things about coaching….the income, the perks (who doesn’t love to travel around the world), the community. And while Beachbody cannot guarantee any level of income or success, I can guarantee you that the warm fuzzies…..those feel good moments…those moments that you know made a difference in the life of someone else….those will happen in this business over and over and over again.

I could talk about coaching all day everyday, but since I would like to keep this on the shorter side, I want to end with this…..

Before I started coaching I worked many long hours in the higher education industry…many long, thankless hours. I had limited sick and vacation time, bosses who were assholes, coworkers that made the jobs miserable. I dreaded Monday mornings. I dreaded the weekends because I was so busy during the week that I jampacked them with activities and events so I could make up for not being present during the week. I would come home at night and wonder why i spent so much money on fancy degrees to do something that did not make me feel good. The truth was….I didn’t know that something like online coaching existed. In my mind I had all these preconceived ideas about MLMs…..ideas only told to me from others, not determined by my own research and questioning.

I got out of my own way….I ignored what people said/thought….and I made a decision that was best for me. I’ve never regretted making that decision. However, I know I would’ve regretted staying in higher education and feeling like I wasn’t making a difference in the world.

I now get to be a small part of so many people’s success stories….it may be teeny tiny, but if my involvement in their lives leave them in a better place than when I found them then I know I did my job.

IMG_9350.JPG

Back in my Corporate America days

Life is too short to spend all your time doing something you hate or that doesn’t make you feel good. If you are someone who right now is working in a career where you despise clocking in or feel like you have no purpose, I’d love to talk to you!

Remember this…..if you are unhappy with where you are in life, move. You are not a tree.

I challenge you to find something that gives you goosebumps of happiness. I truly hope you find it.

Click here to contact me to discuss becoming an online coach!

Advertisements
Tagged , , , , ,

Summit 2018: Recap

Hey guys!

Can you believe it is JULY? This year is flying by….it’s insane!

I’ve been in go-go-go mode for a bit, but now that I’m back home and all settled I am able to finally get back into blogging mode. Make sure you guys let me know topics/things you want me to blog on. I have a long list of things you have submitted, but I always like to have more for the future. After all, this blog is for you, and I want to hook you up with info you like reading about!

Before I start hitting some of those topics, I have to fill you all in on my recent trip to Indianapolis for our yearly convention! It was much earlier than usual (typically it is in July), and I was really excited to go to this unfamiliar city. If you remember, last year’s location in New Orleans wasn’t my favorite, and I was hopeful this city would be much better suited for this big event. And let’s not forget the one big win with it being in Indy: it was only a short 4.5 hr drive from my house!

IMG_0779

Off to Indy!

Last year the sparkle coaches who were accompanying me and I rented a big house, but this year we opted for hotel rooms based on the logistics of the events. I was stoked to not only road trip with two of my besties but get to room with them there, too, which was perfect since our lives are crazy and we we don’t get to spend as much time together as I would like. In addition to us, three sparkle bombshells from my team joined us. There were supposed to be quite a few more, but due to a variety of situations, they had to cancel. I always wish every single coach could go, but I always understand when life happens.

We got into town Wednesday afternoon and were pleasantly surprised to find our hotel was directly across the street from the convention center and Lucas Oil Stadium, the two locations where our events would take place. Besides that, the hotel had covered walkways to both AND was attached to a mall, so you know I was pretty freaking pleased, especially since Indy had strange weather that included rain every day at some point…..I think we all know I’m not a fan of getting caught in the rain.

IMG_0848.JPG

The view from our hotel, right in the center of the city!

Everything began Thursday evening, so we used Wednesday to hang with the team. We enjoyed a nice team dinner and some shopping. Since I am considered a “legend”, I get special privileges like getting to explore the special Beachbody shopping center called The Core Wednesday evening. I always love getting in and not fighting the crowds, plus things sell out so quickly I wanted to make sure I got what I wanted. Hey, it’s a tax write off, right???!!!

IMG_0910

Team dinner!

Thursday we had a team lunch and a big team photo before opening ceremonies kicked off. Opening ceremonies are always such a blast….new programs, new products, new trainings are announced….all things that excite me to no end! Two things that really excited me: a new Shaun T workout that is only 20 minutes a day AND a pumpkin spice shakeology flavor launching with limited release! Basic bitches everywhere, unite!

IMG_1132.JPG

I love my Dynasty United crew!

Friday started off extremely early, and what better way to start than day than getting your ass kicked by Shaun T. Naturally I had my unicorn blood (two scoops) and still felt like a walking zombie, but we crushed that workout! I did slightly hurt my ankle during one of the moves (hence why you haven’t seen me working out the past few days) but loved the moves and, as always, Shaun’s motivation. There is something about how that man fires you up that can’t be duplicated.

IMG_1117.jpg
I love so many parts of Summit, but I am kind of a nerd, so my favorite aspect is always the workshops. I love to learn from others, gain a different perspective, and just think outside the box. I’m still going through my notes! Friday and Saturday afternoons were spent in workshops hitting a variety of topics and every last one was fabulous.

Friday evening I earned the right to some exclusive parties based on my success during the year, and I brought my coach Christen with me as my date. These parties are always over the top and so much fun, so I gave my team the opportunity to earn my plus one. Christen was the winner! Not only did I get to hang with one of my other faves, Tony Horton, but I enjoyed a tasty cupcake in bed post celebration!


Saturday was the final day of our trip, as we had to leave earlier than anticipated to get back home. It included a super workout, more trainings, and lots of laughs.  Fortunately we were able to stream closing ceremonies on the way home….it stunk to have to leave early, but because I had a dog sitting issue Saturday evening, I had to make it back to take care of my guys.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Before we headed home there was one thing I absolutely had to do, and if you know me you aren’t surprised when I say we went to the best donut shop in Indy: Jack’s Donuts! Every time I travel I always have to find out where the most amazing donuts are then find out for myself! The best part of this quick stop: I got busted by a bunch of coaches in my coach family. It’s like they knew where to find me!

Next year our conference is back in Indy, and I couldn’t be happier. It was such a great city for so many reasons and one that really welcomed us with open arms.

Now that I’m back and settled back into my routine my team and I are working toward a huge goal. I’ve never been more excited, and I can’t wait. If you have been thinking about doing what I do or just learning more, fill out this quick interest form HERE so I can reach out and see if this is a good fit!

Already looking forward to seeing you next July, Indy, and of course, I’ll be back to Jack’s.

Tagged , , ,

One Starfish at a time.

 

I have always loved starfish. I’m not sure what started my enjoyment of them….I think a lot of it had to do with the summers my family and I would spend in Chincoteague Island. There were a few local shops that we would visit each trip, one in particular named The Brandt. I loved going to that shop because it had all kinds of starfish trinkets that I remember just loving looking at. There’s just something about starfish that are a little magical to me.

As I grew older, I continued my love for starfish, but that was because of a story (found below) that I once read that resonated with me so much. I love it so much that I have a starfish in my office to remind me of the power of ONE.

Screen Shot 2018-01-13 at 7.19.55 PM

Once upon a time, there was a wise man who used to go to the ocean to do his writing. He had a habit of walking on the beach before he began his work.

One day, as he was walking along the shore, he looked down the beach and saw a human figure moving like a dancer. He smiled to himself at the thought of someone who would dance to the day, and so, he walked faster to catch up.

As he got closer, he noticed that the figure was that of a young man, and that what he was doing was not dancing at all. The young man was reaching down to the shore, picking up small objects, and throwing them into the ocean.

He came closer still and called out ‘Good morning! May I ask what it is that you are doing?’

The young man paused, looked up, and replied ‘Throwing starfish into the ocean.’

‘I must ask, then, why are you throwing starfish into the ocean?’ asked the somewhat startled wise man.

To this, the young man replied, ‘The sun is up and the tide is going out. If I don’t throw them in, they’ll die.’

Upon hearing this, the wise man commented, ‘But, young man, do you not realize that there are miles and miles of beach and there are starfish all along every mile? You can’t possibly make a difference!’

At this, the young man bent down, picked up yet another starfish, and threw it into the ocean. As it met the water, he said, ‘It made a difference for that one.’

I think about this story every single day, and it has a lot to do with what I do for a living.

All too often so many people question what I do. I get it though….there was a time that I thought the concept of being an online wellness consultant was silly and probably made up, but here I am…..four and half years into my career as one, and I can tell you that isn’t the case.

That young man on the beach throwing the starfish back into the ocean…..I see what I do as the same thing.

There are millions of people on the planet who are struggling with their health….and obesity is at an all time high.  To many, there is no way I could possibly make a difference. But to me, I KNOW I am making a difference…..one person at a time.

This year I have pledged to help even more people than I have in my entire FOUR+ years as a wellness coach…I’m THAT focused on making a difference, and my team is doing the same…..one person at a time.

If you want to learn more and help us on our journey to make a difference in the health of the country, let me know HERE! I’d love for you to help us so we can get ALLLLLLLLLL of the starfish off the beach and into the ocean. Let’s be starfish throwers together!

Remember, you can ALWAYS make a difference to someone.

ALWAYS.

Tagged , , , , , , ,

Rant of the Week: Susies!

It’s been awhile since I’ve done a rant, but today seemed like the perfect day to get something off of my chest. I’m so sick of the Susies!

For those that don’t know me in the real world, I am 100% what one would refer to as a hot head. I go from 0 to 100 really fast when I feel like someone is trying to trash something I am really passionate about. It’s hard to get me to that level, but when I do, watch out!

I used to think that having a personality like this was bad, but after some time I realized that it wasn’t. You see….when I get fired up about something….like REALLY FIRED UP….it is because it is something I am extremely passionate about. Passion is good!

I’m passionate about so many things, especially helping people get into a happier and healthier place. I try my best to share my sparkle with everyone I meet and help them reach whatever goal it is that they have, and I run a team of motivated men and women who do the same. We want to leave the world better than how we found it. That should be everyone’s mission!

I recently have seen a few fellow ex-coaches taking to their social media platforms to try and trash Beachbody. When I see this my heart always hurts a little bit. Most just want to trash the company and say that it isn’t a good company or that the market is saturated and that there isn’t a need for coaches.

Am I going to defend this company? Abso-FREAKIN-lutely.

Listen, people. We need to have a little REAL talk moment here, because I’m noticing a trend with some of you who are actively trying to trash my company, and this is a major bugaboo of mine, so I have to address it.

-With any business….NOT JUST BEACHBODY….if you don’t put in time and effort and TRY, you aren’t going to be successful. That goes for our company, that goes for Wall Street, that goes for McDonalds. You can’t expect to go to your job every day, sit around, do nothing, and end up making a million dollars at the end of the year. It just doesn’t happen. So before you start trashing a company that you **USED** to love, please take a moment and think about your work ethic or lack thereof. I’m going to go out on a limb and say that you didn’t put in the work, which means you weren’t as successful as you wanted, which means you quit, which means you jumped to another MLM company thinking that would make you more successful. Bitch, please. The only place Success comes before Work is in the dictionary. It doesn’t matter what you are doing: your actions are tied directly to your result!

-Trashing any company, especially when you are making it a point to make your status updates about said company like every other day, makes YOU look like a real asshole. Do you think people will be drawn to you because you just want to bash a company? Negativity breeds negativity. I see these people who just post status after status on Facebook about Beachbody, and the people commenting on that post are all the same Negative Nancy’s who, much like the status maker, didn’t make Beachbody work because they thought signing up to coach meant the next day the sky would be raining money just because they smiled. Furthermore, when I see someone who is posting negative statuses of comments about there companies on the reg, they lose all credibility with me instantly. It’s one thing to have an opinion, but it’s another thing to try to spread hate and nastiness without sharing the whole story. Remember, WHAT SUSIE SAYS OF SALLY SAYS MORE OF SUSIE THAN OF SALLY.

-Saying that the coaching market is saturated is THE. MOST. RIDICULOUS. statement you could possibly make, and it also makes me sad because it tells me you don’t see what is happening with this country’s health as a whole. This country is more obese than it ever has been….and child obesity is off the charts! Millions of people need a solution and to be connected to a person/product that can help them reach their goals. Now I’m not saying that what I do is the only option…there are so many great options out there, and everyone needs to find the best solution for their situation/lifestyle/goal….but what I am saying is that what I do and the products I am able to connect people with….THOSE ARE THE SOLUTION for many, many, many people out there.

I recently went out to Las Vegas with friends to celebrate a friend of mine’s birthday. One of my favorite parts of Vegas is Old Vegas….aka Fremont street…where there are the old school lights and casinos….the people watching is also pretty amazing there, too. As we were walking around I noticed a restaurant promoting the World’s Highest Calorie Burger, called the Quadruple Bypass Burger, and all kinds of unhealthy options. The menu even included cigarettes (that’s the vegan option). I was instantly disgusted. Don’t get me wrong, I am all for a greasy hamburger and cheese sticks, but this is taking it to another level. This place was actually promoting poor health, high cholesterol, and heart attacks! And you are telling me that there isn’t a need for individuals to help those struggling with their health????? Yeah, mmmmooookkkk.

(Sidenote: I did look into this place when I got back home. It is part of a chain and there have been quite a few deaths as a result of the food. Several of the locations have closed, and the spokesman for the company actually died in 2013).

Screen Shot 2017-12-13 at 9.55.39 AM
-Sometimes things don’t work out. We have all been there…..a job didn’t work out the way we hoped, a relationship didn’t work out, etc. Does that mean something better is out there? Chances are, yes! Use whatever it is as a stepping stone and acknowledge that while it isn’t the final destination on your journey, it helped get you to where you should be. I’ve had a ton of failures in my lifetime….and I can guarantee you Im going to have many more. But…..I’m where I am in my life because of those failures. I wouldn’t have the career, the people, or the life I have if it wasn’t for the stumbling I did along the way. I won’t bash all the things that helped me get here. I acknowledge that they didn’t work out but I choose to see the positive in them.

Look, maybe you’d rather sell wine or makeup…..COOL! This isn’t about saying Beachbody is the only MLM out there….it’s not! There are many amazing ones depending on what you want to do and what you are passionate about (I have friends in pretty much every MLM out there….and I support them 100%, so don’t even go there). Sometimes you do have to try one before finding the right one for you. I’m not saying that’s not ok!

What I am saying though…..for those of you thinking wanting to build a business…. creating a staircase of people you have stepped on won’t get you the success you want.

I want everyone to find something that makes their heart so incredibly full that they want to spend every minute of every day rocking whatever it is. That’s how I feel. I literally wake up every morning excited to chat with my coaches, my challengers, the customers I work with one on one, my kick boxers…..I feel so happy knowing I am just one small piece of their success story. That’s what makes me tick. That’s what drives me. That’s where my passion is.

And that’s what has driven this rant.

Now let’s go about our day….and let’s be positive, ok?????

Tagged , , , , , , ,

Bah Humbug.

Yes, that’s how I feel this time of year, and I don’t even feel bad saying it. As much as I try I just don’t see the holidays as the same joyous time as everyone else, and it is really challenging when you feel like you have a heart made of coal when everyone else is rocking a heart made of candy canes and sugar plums.

November marked the second anniversary since we lost my father, and since his death came right around Thanksgiving, the holidays that year and ever since have changed for us. That first year I refused to acknowledge the holiday, and I did not put up a tree or any decorations. The gifts I purchased were wrapped in paper that could pass for a birthday present. Last year, I kind of tried….I did the tree thing, baked a little bit, and still refused to send out Christmas cards or wrap in festive paper.

This year I am trying a little harder. I put up two gorgeous trees in my house; one a frosted pine that has all of the ornaments given to me by my parents over the years, and the other a glitter tree that is Kate-tastic with a capital K. Our mantle is decorated, and I will be baking like crazy in a few weeks. Wrapping…..well, let’s just say I found Christmas doughnut wrapping paper, so that’s the theme of this year. I ordered Christmas cards, and if I ever finish addressing them they will be in the mail. Im trying.

From the outside it seems as though I’m into the holiday this year, but don’t be deceived. I am actually struggling more this year than I did that first Christmas, and I’m not sure why I am stepping back in my grief journey.  I was talking to some people in my grief support group about it and don’t know if it is because since my dad’s death I have lost both my grandmothers, one just a few months ago, and this entire time of year is laced with dates tied to their passings, funerals, or memorials, or if it is something else.

As I sit here and try to deal with my own grief I often think about how insensitive I was before my family suffered these losses. I remember giving friends grief when they told me they hated the holidays. I remember trying to push certain friends into partaking into holidays traditions with me, even when they made it clear they didn’t want to. I just couldn’t get that people could hate such a beautiful time of year.

Now here I am, one of those people. Nothing is worse than someone saying “Are you excited for the holidays?” and answering with “No”, then given either a dirty look or a hard time because of your answer. It’s also the time of year where there are parties and events going on constantly, and I struggle being able to go to any of them. To me, I am that Grinch in the group that doesn’t want to participate, and I am always afraid if I attend I will be the Debbie Downer in the group that will ruin the fun for everyone. It’s not a good feeling. And, unfortunately, I have many friends who have recently suffered significant losses that are joining me in the “Eff the holidays” club.

For those of you struggling this time of year, here are some things that I have found are somewhat helpful, at least to me:

1. Incorporate your loved one into the holiday in some way. 

This is probably the hardest thing to do. For me, I struggle with family gatherings and the traditions we used to do because I sit there the entire time and can’t help but think about the empty chairs at the table and who is missing. And yes, I know that our loved ones are there with us in spirit, but that doesn’t make it easier. An important thing to do is decide what traditions you want to keep and what you want to change, then add a new tradition for your loved one(s).

Last year my mom and I learned about The White Envelope Project, and we decided to make that a new tradition in honor of my dad. I supported a pet rescue last year and will be doing the same this year, as my dad was a huge dog lover.

Every year my dad would request I make him a batch of anise pizzelles when I made the basic ones for the family. I continue to make him a batch now. I cried the entire time last year, and I guarantee I will this year, too, but making these cookies that he loved makes me feel a little comfort.

Screen Shot 2017-12-07 at 8.57.59 AM

The White Envelope Project

2. Try to maintain your usual routine.

For me, that includes getting in my workout every day, completing the basic business tasks that I do daily, and acting like the holidays are just another day. I need that routine to keep myself from falling into a deeper black hole. Doing things that make you feel normal will help.

3. Be honest with your family and friends. 

It’s challenging for me sometimes to tell my friends the reasons why I don’t want to attend certain holiday functions. I know that just because I am dealing with grief doesn’t mean they are, but you need to open the lines of communication. Let others know you are needing support and a little extra love this time of year. There’s no shame in saying “I need help” or “I can’t do this” in relation to a certain event, and your loved ones will understand.

4. Connect with a grief support group online or in your area, or seek assistance from a counselor. 

DO NOT feel weird about talking to someone about your feelings and issues this time of year, or any time of year to be honest. I do it regularly, and I have found a lot of comfort from individuals in these groups. Sometimes just talking to someone who has gone through the exact same thing you have gone through helps.

5. Do not feel guilty if you do something that brings you joy.

I’ve struggled with this one a lot…..how can I have a good time when a huge part of my heart is missing?  Your loved ones want you to continue living life, so do things that may make a dark time a little lighter. Laughing and spending time with friends and family doesn’t mean you don’t miss them like crazy. I do my best to still talk about my dad if I am having a good time or hanging out with people who maybe didn’t know him because I feel like he is still a part of things if he is in the conversation here and there.

6. Always have an exit strategy. 

One thing that has happened to me since losing my dad is that I have moments that hit me where I go into a complete emotional meltdown without warning. Sometimes a song comes on…..sometimes I just see something that reminds me of him and it hurts my heart….I never know. But when it happens, I need to get the hell out of dodge, and I need to get out fast. Since this happens a lot, especially this time of year, I always drive separate so I can make sure I’m not stuck where I am and can get home or out of the crowded area I’m in fast. Have a plan in case this is something you are experiencing. For me, it helps me feel as if I have a little control over those moments.

7. Minimize gifts. 

I feel all too often people go overboard with the holidays. Do we really need ALL that stuff? I used to be one of those overboard people….I just loved buying and getting gifts.  Ever since my dad’s death my thoughts have changed. I don’t need things. I just want to be around those I care about and spend as much time with them as possible. Things are just things……but people and memories….those are what matters. Focus on the important things instead of trying to one up someone else with a bigger, shinier, more expensive gift. In the grand scheme of life it won’t matter.

8. TRY not to eat/drink your feelings. 

As someone who used to do this all the time, I know how tempting it can be. I’m not saying to not #treatyoself here and there, but don’t sit down in front of the cookie table and inhale dozens. It won’t help things, and you will end up feeling worse about it in the long run.

9. Volunteer and do good. 

I feel good donating for The White Envelope project, but I also try to get involved volunteering or helping others in need. There are soup kitchens needing help with holiday meals for the homeless, people who don’t have jackets to wear during the cold, animals who need shelter, children who won’t have any gifts to open on Chrismas day….do something that can help them but also make you feel good.

10. Give yourself grace.

Not everything has to be perfect, you don’t have to have it all together, and it’s okay if you cry. Focus on the things and people who make you happy and can’t help you get through these challenging times.

And for those of you reading this who may ask things likes “Are you excited for the holidays?” or “Why don’t you like Christmas?” etc, think before you ask….and if you do ask, don’t give someone a hard time if they don’t answer how you think you should. And DON’T call us Grinches, Scrooges, Assholes, whatever…..we are doing our best to get through the holidays and not ruin yours.

Thinking of all of you who are doing your best to get through the holidays and sending you peace and comfort.

Tagged , , , , , , ,

July: Sparkle or Dull?

This month I decided to do something a little different and review something I have gotten so many messages about: My summer Fab Fit Funbox!

Chances are if you have Facebook you have seen at least one sponsored ad from a D list celebrity talking about this quarterly box of goodies tailored to you. I would see these posts daily and wonder if they were as awesome as they appeared to be, and with so many of these boxes being out on the market, why this one? Is it better than its competitors, like Bless Box, Ipsy, Birchbox, Boxycharm, Beauty Box, or Babe Boxx to name a few?

If you dig far enough back in this blog, I’ve reviewed both Birchbox and Ipsy before, as I used to subscribe to box. Both were a lower price point at $9.99 a month, but I ended up canceling both due to the fact that I felt they weren’t paying any attention to the profile I had created. For example, I had been very specific that I didn’t want hair care products in my box, as I am very weird about what I use on my hair and was more interested in makeup/skincare items. Several months in a row I ended up with duplicate items, all hair oriented, and customer service never seemed to give me an answer why this was happening. For me, it didn’t end up being worth it.

So back to Fab Fit Fun….with a $49.95 quarterly price tag, I was a tad bit skeptical. However, my mom had ordered one the previous quarter, as did my aunt, and they both loved it. If it passes the Mom test, it’s golden, right???

My mom actually had secretly ordered one to be delivered to me, so when it arrived on my doorstep, I was super excited! I couldn’t wait to see what was in it!

Screen Shot 2017-08-06 at 6.31.20 PM.jpg

My Fab Fit Fun box!

Here’s a breakdown of everything I received in my box! You can click the link to view the item, learn more about them, and see the cost of each item individually if you don’t believe me when I share!

Mystic Bar necklace by Kris Nations: I love jewelry, and I’m really into the color turquoise, so I loved this necklace immediately. It is simple enough that I can layer with other necklaces, but substantial enough to wear it on its own. It retails for $58….right there the price of the entire box has been exceeded!

Bkr Little Water Bottle: I have been using this thing constantly! I received the Romeo bottle; my mother received Rosy, a pink color. This product retails for $35. They have lots of colors and styles based on your preference!

Screen Shot 2017-08-06 at 6.58.55 PM

Cargo HD Picture Perfect Highlighter: As a makeup lover, I can honestly say that I had never heard of the Cargo brand, which meant I wanted to try this product first. I love highlighting, and my go to is an illuminator from Urban Decay. I love that product so much and didn’t anticipate liking this product as much as I did. It has a great shimmer to it, goes on smooth, and looks amazing in photos and when the light hits it (it retails for $30). I definitely will be giving this brand a chance moving forward and this highlighter will be replacing my Urban Decay!

Juice Beauty Eye Concentrate: I’ve seen the Juice Beauty brand at Ulta in the past, but, again, never tried it. When it comes to under eye products, I am a big fan of Benefit Cosmetics’ It’s Potent! Undereye cream….it is a killer product that I have been using for years. I replaced my Benefit with this Juice Beauty product every day for a week and loved it….it had a great smell and texture, and it wasn’t heavy if worn under makeup. At $29, it is cheaper than the Benefit product I use, but I didn’t like it as much as what I currently use. I still think this is a great quality product that I would recommend.

Eau Thermale Avene Hydrating Sunscreen: I have yet to use this product, as I haven’t been in the sun or to a beach since I received it. However, I have a few beach trips coming up that I will allow me to try it out! All I can attest to is that it smells great!

Understated Leather On the Road Again Travel Set: Guys, I am obsessed with this! As you know, I travel a lot, and surprisingly one thing I don’t own is a cover for my passport. I’m not sure how I have lived so long without one, but I love the quality and texture of this! It came paired with a matching luggage tag and retails for $28.

Klorane Dry Shampoo: I’ve been very upfront with everyone about my love for dry shampoo….it’s my secret to only washing my hair once every two weeks or so. I’ve been a loyal Batiste user for a loooooonnnnggggg time. This product intrigued me because it claimed to not leave a white residue after application and was made with oat milk. Even though I have perfected a system to ensure no white is hanging out in my hair, I’d still love a product that allowed me to cut out that step. Surprisingly, this product was awesome and lived up to its hype. I loved the smell, and it did the same for my hair as Batiste. The only negative to this? It has a $20 price tag as opposed to the $8 one of Batiste, so I don’t know if I love it that much more to fire my trusty faithful brand.

Michael Star Ruana: I was most excited about this ruana! I love anything that is versatile, and I loved the colors of the product! I’ve been wearing it with a belt and love that look, but I’m also a huge fan of how it looks when it is loose and flowy. Allegedly I can wear this as a scarf or sarong, but I haven’t tried either way yet. This ruana retails for $58 (I included the website for others similar since this one is sold out) and if I hadn’t received anything else but this item, I would’ve still been happy.

Screen Shot 2017-08-06 at 8.38.06 PM.jpg

Items in the box differ based on how you complete the profile. My mother got the ruana  in black, and she also got an art kit instead of the travel set. Some people received a himalayan salt kit, and some also got a massage oil instead of the dry shampoo.

Overall Verdict: SPARKLE!

This Fab Fit Fun box was a great value and was full of amazing products. I 100% recommend it to you if you’ve been on the fence about trying it!

sparkleon

SaveSaveSaveSave

Tagged , , , ,

June: Sparkle or Dull?

When it comes to the beauty items I review, I always try my best to not just review the higher end brands but also the cheaper items that can easily be found at your local drug store. Some of the cheaper products I have reviewed have become staples in my makeup collection, beating out those that are more expensive by a long shot….and I’d be lying if I said that didn’t excite me! It’s always a great thing to save money!

Last July I reviewed a waterproof eyeliner by Stila (read that review here) after having a disastrous time with the cheapo eyeliner I had been using for awhile. I loved it…it was essentially an easy to use magic marker for my eye, and it stayed on like a champ. However, one negative thing about it…..well, about me….is that I use A LOT of eyeliner, and I felt I was going through this pen like crazy. At a little over $20 per eyeliner, I wanted to see if I could find a more cost effective product.

Product #1: Nyx Super Skinny Eye Marker

Whenever I am trying to find a more cost effective beauty product, one of my go to brands is always Nyx. Nyx can be found at Ulta, but also Target, Walmart, and various drug stores. Ulta often has buy one Nyx item, get one half off, so I timed this purchase up with another Nyx purchase (Im a huge fan of their HD powder), making it about $5.

As I mentioned, I loved that the Stila pen was like a large marker…that helps with precision when drawing on your eyeliner and also draws on a cleaner line in my opinion. Since this item had “marker” in the title, I figured it would be a great one to try.

Screen Shot 2017-07-09 at 4.43.12 PM.jpg
For starters, I wanted to share with you the two side by side. Not only is the Nyx product cheaper, but it is larger. I like that. I like that a lot. Once you remove the lid, the items look basically identical. Like Stila, the Nyx liner comes in a variety of colors for those of you not into jet black liner like I am.

Screen Shot 2017-07-09 at 4.43.01 PM.jpg
I was really impressed by this product. Everything I loved about the Stila liner I loved with this one as well. The only negative: the color wasn’t as bold as the Stila, but it was still enough for me to be satisfied…I think I’m just used to that super black in your face color.

FINAL VERDICT: Sparkle! Use the money you save by buying this product and hook yourself up with something else fun!

Product #2: Elf Makeup Remover Pen

Elf is a lower cost brand that is right up there with Nyx. I’ve reviewed their products many times before and am always pleased. They are extremely affordable, great quality, and can be found in most stores, including Target and Walmart.

A while back I was watching a youtube tutorial when the girl in it mentioned she always carried an Elf makeup remover pen with her. Surprisingly, I had never heard of or tried this item, and immediately went to Target to snag one. At $2.99, I hoped this product was as good as she claimed.

Screen Shot 2017-07-09 at 4.42.47 PM

Here’s the thing with me: I know I know what’s going on with makeup application, and during the application process I rarely make a mistake. Buuuutttt……I always seem to sneeze right after I put on my mascara and/or lashes, so I am constantly ending up with black dots or lines that aren’t attractive. Sometimes this means having to redo the entire eye, which is such a pain in the ass. I hoped this product would be a little lifesaver. Fortunately for me the day I wanted to try this product I went on a sneezing binge.

Screen Shot 2017-07-09 at 4.42.40 PM.jpg
See those cute black dots? Thanks mascara/liner/whatever. Instead of freaking out, I opened up my makeup remover pen and simply ran it over the mess. It immediately was gone. There was a very small area that needed touched up….easy with a little concealer…..but other than that my eyes were safe from destruction.

The only negative thing I see with some Elf products: they don’t last nearly as long as others. I’ve only used this pen a handful of times and am wondering how much life it has left…I’m guessing I’ll know the answer this week when I take it to New Orleans and will be using it for photo shoots and other fun things.

FINAL VERDICT: Sparkle. It’s definitely something you want to have on hand for emergencies and can save you a lot of makeup aggravation.

I always love 2/2 months! If you try these items, let me know….I always love hearing from you guys!

Hope your day (and beauty routine) is full of sparkle!

sparkleon

Tagged , , , , , , , ,

January: Sparkle or Dull?

Back at it with some makeup reviews, friends! Sidetone: Sparkle or Dull has officially turned ONE year old! Yay! I’m so glad you guys like the reviews of various beauty products and enjoy all of your feedback! I hope this segment on my blog has helped you in some way!

Let’s chat products!

PRODUCT #1: Too Faced White Chocolate Chip Palette

If you’ve been around the makeup block for awhile, you know that Too Faced is my main eyeshadow brand.I’ve always loved the pigment of the palettes, the way they smell, and I just think the overall quality is great. As someone who owns literally EVERY palette they have ever made, I’d like to think I know a thing or two about their products.

When the White Chocolate Chip palette was released, naturally it went out of stock almost immediately. Usually I grab these items asap, but for some reason I was slacking around the time it was released and wasn’t able to get it until it was restocked after Christmas….perfect timing since I had a ton of Sephora gift cards (people know what makes me tick).
Screen Shot 2017-02-06 at 6.25.30 AM.pngLately I have been gravitating toward more pink hues for my eyes, a color I typically don’t do. I was excited about the colors in this palette because the majority were ones I didn’t really own in addition to the fact that the colors fell into the pink trend I was loving.

Sephora was out of stock in the store with the palette, so they ordered it online so it could be delivered to me. Oh, the anticipation!

And then I got the palette…..and my excitement somewhat diminished.

Here’s the thing about Too Faced products….as I mentioned, the quality is great, but one downfall is that they aren’t cheap. Since I own so many of their items, I know what to expect when it comes to the size of the palettes.

This thing….yeah, no where near their normal palette size.

I opened the box to find an item literally the size of a credit card. WHAT????!!!!!! Besides that fact, it was exponentially thinner . Too Faced, what is happening here?

 

FINAL VERDICT: DULL-ISH
Overall, the colors are great…..the smell of the palette is nice….but I don’t feel like it is a good value. When I can buy one of the Chocolate Bar palettes that feature way more shadows for about $15 more, why would I want to buy something this size? If you don’t care about cost then this would probably be a sparkle in your world….so really this product could go either way for me.

Product #2 Precisely, My Brow Pencil by Benefit

I know, I know….you may be asking yourself “Why is she reviewing ANOTHER brow product”…….

Well, I had to, my friends.

October’s S or D featured a random find from Target, a brow pencil from Elf. I loved loved LOVED this product…even after I realized it didn’t last long (about 7-10 uses). For a few bucks and the great color I was okay with it though…until I went to Target and they stopped carrying my color!

If you are someone who uses the lightest shade, you are still in luck. I’ve been creeping various Targets and stores that carry the Elf brand, and the color I use seems to have magically vanished. Whatever.

I needed a brow product replacement and decided it was finally time to give Benefit a chance. I’ve been hearing about their brow line for awhile but didn’t know if it would be worth a try….which is usually my hang up with a product. And, like many items, I was expecting a disappointment.

WRONG.

FINAL VERDICT: SPARKLE!!!!

Let’s cover everything I like about this product:

-The color is spot on….and, unlike many brow products, there is a wider variety of colors to choose from.

-There’s a lot of product in here….I’ve been using this for well over a month, and we are still rocking it out.

-The precision of the pencil is great for shaping your brows with smooth lines.

-The spoolie is fantastic.

100% worth it.
screen-shot-2017-02-06-at-6-38-58-am
Have you tried either product? Tell me your thoughts!

sparkleon

Tagged , , , , , , , , , ,

#Lashgamestrong

Oh, lashes…..how I love you. Let me count thy ways.

I talk a lot about consistency with workouts and nutrition and do my best to be consistent, but I’m human….so sometimes I fall off the wagon. When it comes to my lashes though….those…those I am consistent with every.single.day. I never fall off the lash wagon!

screen-shot-2017-01-12-at-1-09-20-am

So many lashes, so little time. 

I get a lot of questions about them….like why i love them, what ones are my favorite, why don’t I try extensions, why don’t I try this lash product or lash product, yadda yadda. Let me break down my lashes for y’all.

Let’s address extensions first and foremost…….

I was born with lovely lashes (thanks, parents) and honestly only used mascara up until about four years ago or so. Occasionally I wore falsies for a special event or wedding, but that only  happened a handful of times a year, not daily. As I got more and more into the makeup scene and doing makeup for friends, I realized I loved the look of longer, fuller lashes, so I made the decision to get eyelash extensions.

I waited a while to do this, researching Do’s and Don’ts because I had heard horror stories about lash extensions. On the flip, my dear friend and personal makeup consultant, Marenda, had gotten them done, as had my cousin, and both had fabulous experiences.

My appointment was scheduled over Fourth of July weekend in 2015, and I conveniently made it on the day of my engagement photos. In my mind it was the perfect time to get them done, and I was excited at the thought of these super glam lashes in our photos.

The place….exactly the kind of place I would usually go…trendy and modern, and my lash “expert” was the kind of person who seemed to really know her stuff….at first. I had called ahead of time to ask questions about how they did things and wanted to make sure they did not use a glue with formaldehyde, which is common in glues purchased overseas. They assured me they didn’t.

I’m going to spare you the complete details of the experience because it was wretched, but I will tell you it left me calling Marenda, who was on her way over to do my makeup for the engagement shoot, in tears.  The lashes looked terrible….wonky like Helen Keller had applied them because they were all curving in different directions, and the “expert” told me when I was paying that the glue in fact had formaldehyde in it. Cool.

Ren saved the day for the engagement photo shoot (thank heavens), but the weeks to follow included my lashes falling out and, at one point, me having barely any lashes at all. It was a sweet look, let me tell you. In order to avoid looking scary, I started applying my falsies daily. As my lashes grew back, I continued to wear falsies because they didn’t grow back the way they were before (Spoiler alert: they STILL aren’t the way they used to be). I’ve been in a serious relationship with lashes ever since.

Screen Shot 2015-07-22 at 4.37.39 PM.jpg

Thankful for a talented friend for making my lashes look great for this shoot!

What are the lash products I swear by?

I have an extensive collection of lashes ranging from drugstore brands to more expensive ones. My favorites are from House of Lashes and are the Heartbreakers, but I also love the Faux Mink lashes from Lilly Lashes…..I wear these a lot when I want a more dramatic look. My wedding look featured the Miami lashes from Lilly!

The most important thing with lashes….whether they are cheap ones or the more expensive ones is THE GLUE! Having quality glue is the most important thing. I swear by the HOL Glue and recommend it to everyone….trust me on this! It is worth the cost and is the best product out there for lashes. I carry the travel size glue with me at all times, and the full size is always stocked up. This product is formaldehyde, phthalates, and paragons free and great if you have sensitive eyes.

DSC_5378.jpg

My wedding day lashes.

Were lashes tricky at first? Absolutely. There were days where I couldn’t get them to stay on…or they were off centered….or I didnt let the glue get tacky enough to apply them so they were a hot mess and my fingers got sticky. It took awhile for me to get to the point where I could apply them in less than a minute per lash.

If you are new to lash wear, here are a few basic Katie tips to help you out:

1. After applying glue to the lash, let it chill for about thirty seconds before attempting application. This is important….they adhere better when the glue is tacky.

2. Purchase quality glue (as already addressed).

3. Realize you may have to trim the lashes down. Sometimes I purchase a pair and realize they are too long to fit on my lid, so I have to cut a small piece of the end off. You want to wear the lash, not have the lash where you.

4. Have a storage system for them. Guys, lashes can be reused again and again. Don’t toss them after a single use….clean them and reuse! I use rubbing alcohol to clean mine…easy and inexpensive.

5. Tweezers are the best applicator!

Here’s a quick video I made awhile back to help you with eyelash application! Give it a try…..and if you DO opt for extensions….do you research so you don’t have a horrible experience like I did.

Why do I lash? I love changing my eye look daily….the love how easy they are to wear….how inexpensive they are…and just how badass they make me feel. 

Long live the Lash!

Tagged , , , , , , , ,

November : Sparkle or Dull?

Guys!

This Sparkle or Dull blog….what a headache it has been! The month is nearly over!

I had gotten quite a few requests to review a certain product, and it took me nearly 8 weeks to receive it! Apparently my package got lost in the mail not once, but TWICE, but it finally arrived two days ago, so I jumped right to the review. I was assured that is not the norm with the company’s shipping….so if you order from the same site I share below, don’t fret! Since I was hell bent on reviewing the item AND I don’t do a December Sparkle or Dull (I do a wrap up of some of my favorite finds instead), I had to wait to try the product out before posting!

Product #1: Pantene Pro-V Root Reboot Dry Shampoo

First of all, this isn’t the item I was waiting on…..this you can find at any drugstore, Wal-Mart, Target, etc.

I recently was reading a Cosmopolitan magazine (Yes, I still like to read them) and stumbled across a list of their best beauty finds of the year. I disagreed with most of them (shocker), but I was intrigued when they named this Pantene product as the best dry shampoo.

Screen Shot 2016-12-19 at 11.46.22 AM.jpg
You guys all know how I feel about dry shampoo….I wash my hair about once every two weeks so I rely on a quality dry shampoo to save me the other days. I have been having a love affair with Batiste dry shampoo for quite some time and did not have any desire to cheat on it….but thought just trying out this product would be ok. Who knows, I may love it more!

For starters, they aren’t far off in price. The Pantene product was about $6 at CVS when I snagged it, and Batiste is usually about $8. I always take advantage of the Buy 1, Get one 1/2 off sale on that, and when you pair with a coupon at Ulta it actually ends up being cheaper.

The point of dry shampoo is obviously to suck up the grease or nastiness hanging out in your hair, and Batiste does that incredibly well. When I tried this Root Reboot…..I did not think the same. At first it felt similar to the Batiste, but after I used my token hairdryer trick, I realized my hair still looked greasy and gross. The only benefit to it: It smelled nice, but then again, so does Batiste, and I have options for scents with that one.

This may be a better product for baby fine hair? I’m not sure, but to be named Best Dry Shampoo of the year by Cosmo SOMEONE had to like it…just not sure what hair type that person had. I let one of my pals with finer hair take it and am waiting back for a report from her.

Final Verdict: DULL.

Product #2: Max Makeup Cherimoya Lip Tattoo

Ok….this is the item I waited and waited and waited for!

screen-shot-2016-12-19-at-12-19-51-pm
Couple of things to talk about first…..I’ve been completely skeptical of these kinds of products since they hit the market. I mean….you put something on your lips, let it harden, peel it off, and the color stays? Yeah right. There are so many different kinds of lip tattoos out there (the one I got was temporarily sold out when I visited the site to link it for this blog) that I had a difficult time narrowing down what one to try. Honestly, I just went with the first one that popped up, and I have tried Cherimoya items before with success, so I figured it was a good option.

This definitely deserved a full video review so this blog is turning into a mini vlog.

My pieces of advice just to recap some of the things in the video:

1. Always look at the before and AFTER color swatches before purchasing…they will be different.

2. Use a lip brush to apply product evenly.

3. Make sure it is completely dried before peeling.

4. Be careful…it will dye your hands, clothes, etc.

5. I recommend exfoliating before use!

Definitely glad I gave this a chance and am excited to try more colors!

Final Verdict: SPARKLE!!!!

If you try a different brand, share your experience with me! I want to know what everyone likes when it comes to similar products!

sparkleon

Tagged , , , , , , , , ,
Advertisements