Reader’s Choice Beauty Awards: Part 1

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Okay you guys, I know this was a long awaited post…and as I was going through ALL of your amazing beauty recommendations…SKINCARE was the #1 type of recommendation you sent in! So Part 1 is going to focus mostly on skincare! And I will save a majority of the rest for Part 2.

I have to admit, I am a complete minimalist when it comes to skincare. I really don’t use much of anything except a moisturizer. So this was a true learning experience for me to see ALL the the many amazing products you all use on the daily…and I am going to have to check a few of them out for SURE.

I had asked for some natural recommendations since eventually I am leaning that direction of switching over some products. That being said…there are still some products that aren’t “natural” that I use and love and I am open to learning about ALL products right now, so I have recommendations on all fronts listed here. I have linked them all for your convenience, especially during this holiday season since you may find something for yourself or as a gift for someone else! Please let me know if you have specific questions about anything!

Without further ado…here are your FAVORITE SKINCARE products!!!

 

Moisturizing Oils:

Cocokind Chia Seed Oil (face)

Cocokind Chia Seed Oil

 

Maya Chia Face Oil

Maya Chia

 

Almond oil (whole body) – no brand specified, but found this one at Target

Almond Oil

Marula Oil (evening) – no brand specified, but found this one at Sephora

Marula Oil

Young Living Rose Ointment

YL Rose Ointment

Doterra Geranium Essential Oil

Doterra Geranium Oil

 

Moisturizing Creams:

 

Belief True Cream Moisturizing Bomb (day)

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Natura Culina Skincare Set – this is actually a full set, not just a moisturizer, but wasn’t sure where to place it

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Young Living Sandalwood Moisturizing Cream

YL Sandalwood

Beautycounter Countermatch Adaptive Moisture Lotion

Beautycounter Adaptive Moisture

Beautycounter Brightening Face Oil

Beautycounter Brightening Face Oil

Doterra Immortelle

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Murad Day Cream (with SPF 30)

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Olay Age Defying

Olay

 

 

Astringent/Toner: 

-Witch Hazel – no brand specified, but I found this one at Target

Thayer's Witch Hazel

Heart Grown Wild

Heart Grown Wild Toner

 

Exfoliator/Scrubs:

Sunday Riley Good Genes Acid Exfoliator

Sunday Riley Good Genes

Beautycounter Exfoliating Facial Scrub

Beautycounter Exfoliator

Homemade Pink Himalayan Salt, coconut oil, essential oils for body – here is a good recipe

Himalayan-Salt-Scrub-Recipe

 

Cleansers:

Philosophy Purity along with a Clarisonic

Philosophy Purity

Beautycounter Cleansing Balm

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Beautycounter Charcoal Cleansing Bar

Beautycounter Charcoal Cleansing Bar

Marie Veronique Replenishing Oil Cleanser

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Serums:

Sunday Riley C.E.O

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Young Living Rejuvenating Serum

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Drunk Elephant C Firma

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Heart Grown Wild

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Aster + Bay Purify Serum

Aster and Bay

Agent Nateur Youth Serum

Agent Nateur Youth Serum

 

Mists:

Beautycounter Rosewater Mist

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SPF:

Josie Maran

Josie Maran SPF

 

Face Masks:

Manuka Honey

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Natura Culina Rose Berry

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Beautycounter Charcoal Mask

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Makeup Remover:

Coconut Oil – How to remove your makeup with coconut oil

Aveeno Wipes

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Hands/Body:

Dr. Bronners (both bar and bottle)

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Dr Bronner Bottle

 

J.R. Watkins Coconut Milk & Honey Hand Cream

JR Watkins Hand Cream

Trader Joe’s Hand Cream

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Lotions:

Homemade beeswax, coconut oil, olive oil combo – Instructions for how to make this

Nourish Organic Lotion

Nourish Organic

 

Eye Creams:

Cocokind MyMatcha Stick – under eye puffiness (also great as a chapstick) – not really a cream

Cocokind MyMatcha Stick

100% Pure Coffee Bean Caffeine Cream

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Young Living Wolfberry Eye Cream

YL Wolfberry Eye Cream

 

Deodorant:

Primal Pit Paste Stick

Primal Pit Paste Stick

Nivea Pure Invisible

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Spruce Tips Apothecary Orange Cardamom

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Native Deodorant

Native Deodorant


WHEW!!!!!!! WOW, you guys….I am completely BLOWN AWAY!!!! Thank you SO much for all of your beauty recommendations for Skincare (and a few other things). I will absolutely be trying many of these out, and I hope you are able to do the same!

If you agree with something on this list, I want to hear it!!!

If you believe something needs to be added to this list…I want to know!!!

And lastly…as I work on Part 2, I’m still taking recommendations for:

Concealers

Eye Shadows/Liners

Mascara

Blush

Lipstick

Foundation

Gloss

Nail Polish

Hair Products

Thanks again for all the amazings recs, and I hope you guys are having a fantastic week!!

My Christmas Cards are finished, so now I am busy over here thinking about Christmas shopping and about our new ab + booty focused workout program that is pre-launching SO soon! (December 14th). Getting excited. I just love this time of year!

Hope you are enjoying the holiday season too!

XO,

Gina

Chunkiest Knit

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Chunky Sweater: Free People via Trunk Club (now on SUPER SALE!) / Denim: Rag & Bone / Booties: Target / Sunnies: Brickyard Buffalo / Earrings: J. Crew – similar / Lip: L’Oreal Nature’s Blush 

I have to admit, I’m not typically a Black Friday shopper. I know, I know. Like, really?! WHY NOT?! But, because we travel each year along with two kiddos, we are constantly running around and trying to spend time with as many family members and friends that we can…going out shopping just honestly never makes it on the list when compared to that quality time. But I do know a good sale when I see one. And I got a tip from one of my BFFs last night that this chunky knit sweater I just bought went on a supa dupa sale for Black Friday, so I figured I better share it with ya’ll before it’s completely sold out!

This is not only the chunkiest sweater I have ever owned, but it’s also insanely comfortable and snuggly. I wore it last night to Thanksgiving and my little niece could not get enough cuddles. Hehe. I think I will wear it all the time around her for the snuggles alone!

I love this color for fall and it will be on HEAVY rotation this season during the colder months for sure. And FYI, if you are interested in trying out Trunk Club, I can introduce you to my amazing stylist. Just let me know!

I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving yesterday!!! I am so very grateful for my family, friends, health, my amazing health/fitness community with Beachbody, being with loved ones around the holidays, my new morning routine that I started during the school week this past September, holiday drinks from Starbucks as a special treat, my new comfy sweaters, and so much more.

What are you grateful for this year? And where are you doing your Black Friday or Cyber Monday shopping?

XOXO,

Gina

Good Vibes Only

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Good Vibes Only Sweatshirt: Target / Tank: Gifted / Denim: Paige Denim / Sneaks: New Balance via Poshmark – on sale here / Rainbow + Unicorn Earrings: UncommonGoods / Lip: MAC Up the Amp

A little rain ain’t gonna kill my vibe. The weather is calling for a rainy forecast ahead, but this week is going to be packed with high vibe goodness! From Namaste November to the 80 Day Obsession Sneak Peek, to our “A Day in the Life” Event on Facebook and Instagram Stories, to my New Coach Mentorship Program, (which by the way, shoot me an email to join any of these groups or get more details) Kindergarten tours, a full day off with the both boys on Tuesday, playdates with friends, and MORE…I am ready to #sparkthefire this week!

You can’t control everything in your life, but you can control how you react to it and the vibes/energy you put out into the world. Remember, your vibe attracts your tribe, and I truly believe what you put out there comes back to you. I can’t control the rain, but I can choose whether I complain or splash in the puddles with a smile.

What type of vibes are you going to be putting out into the world this week?

XO,

Gina

Feeling Free

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Dress: Free People via Trunk Club (now 40% off!) / Shoes: Kelly + Katie via DSW (now on sale!) / Lip: MAC Impassioned

This dress is another that I scored with my last Trunk Club and my amazing stylist Megan. I wore it to a baby shower while in Maryland a couple weeks ago, but I also think it’s perfect for a date night in the city. These shoes are EVERYTHING and wore them that whole weekend. Surprisingly pretty comfortable for high heels!

I titled this post “Feeling Free” originally because this dress is from Free People, but after thinking more about it, there is a lot more behind the title and how I’m feeling right now. The boys are getting into their routine at school, and I’m getting into my new routine as their mama and as the CEO of my business…both this blog and my health + fitness coaching…which really, it all sort of combines to just really trying to inspire as many people as possible to live happier + healthier whether that’s by exercising, eating clean, taking time for yourself, feeling comfortable in your clothes and in your own skin, etc. With the boys being in school for a bit, I’m getting a little more free time to myself to really dive into this passion during normal day time hours, and I’m LOVING it.

I’ve been practicing the Miracle Morning which is a book by Hal Elrod, and it’s been completely life changing. I have been starting my day with meditation, visualization, reading personal development, journaling, and of course exercise. It’s literally the most perfect way to start the day, and it really sets the tone and my mood going forward. It also allows me to feel less stressed about things I have “to-do” during the day, and I feel that when I’m with my kids, I can really be more present with them and in the moment.

And not to bring down the moment, since I love keeping things positive over here, but I am feeling incredible sad in light of the recent shooting that happened in Las Vegas. Unfortunately, the “freedom” of owning guns has allowed so many people to lose their own freedom and even their lives. My own dear friends were supposed to be at the concert, and ended up not going, thank God. I have never been a fan of guns and I feel that by having them, violence is just perpetuated. If you want to help support the end of gun violence, Everytown is a great movement to support.

And whatever else you can do to spread love and positivity in this world, please keep doing that! The world needs you. ❤

Make it a great day everyone!

XO,

Gina

Electric Embroidery

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Dress: ASOS (last season) / Shoes: Badgley Mischka / Clutch: Express / Sunnies: Modcloth / Earrings: Forever 21 / Lip: MAC Snob / Bracelet & Necklace: Vintage

Found these photos from a wedding I went to back in June that I never got around to posting. It was a beautiful, gorgeous evening in Upstate NY with family complete with a full vegan healthy menu and lots of dancing, which is my kinda party! Love the bright boldness of this dress and even more, the entire design is embroidered! I definitely need another excuse to wear this one next spring.

We are starting to get into our “back to school” routine over here. My little guy is having a little bit of a hard time getting adjusted to 2’s as I guess is expected, but just something new for us. My older guy is enjoying Pre-K so far, and has come home from school pretty much EXHAUSTED each day. Coordinating a nap for the little one has been difficult some days and yesterday was one of those days. He only got about 10 minutes of one in the car, and wouldn’t go back down. Luckily he’s an easy-going kid, but even the easy-going need naps, and it sorta made him a little nuts. After not putting non-food items in his mouth for months, I have a good idea that he “ate” a marble last night, so in an effort to make sure there was no obstruction, we spent the evening in the Urgent Care Center getting an x-ray. Seems like all is fine, but will just be having to check diapers for the next few days. #momlife

It’s been a little nutty over here and there is a lot of shuffling going on, but we are trying to get into the swing of things, and I am enjoying having a little more time to write, build my coaching business, and have a little bit of a breather again during the day.

Whether you have kids or not, there is definitely something to September having that “Back to School” vibe. It’s almost like the new January in a way. Back into routine. No more late summer nights. I have to say I’m enjoying the routine aspect of it, and I think the kiddos are appreciating too.

Cheers to a fresh fall start! What are you most looking forward to for this upcoming season?

XO,

Gina

 

 

White After Labor Day?

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I thought this outfit post was fitting being the day after Labor Day. I wore this to a dinner party on vacation last week in the Outer Banks, NC, so it was NOT after Labor Day as the title suggests, but it got me thinking…. Do people still follow the rule of no white after Labor Day? Are these pants pretty much closet-ridden until next summer? Spring? Is it just pants that you aren’t supposed to wear? Or other clothing items as well?

What are your thoughts? Is this rule outdated? Or do you still follow it to full effect?

Personally, I’m not sure if I will rock these particular pants again until next year. However, I am not a total rule-follower, and I LOVED this cheeky article by the Huffington Post on wearing white after Labor Day.

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White Denim: Rag & Bone via Nordstrom Rack – still available here / Top: J. Crew via Trunk Club – now on sale! / Shoes: Chinese Laundry via DSW – now on sale! / Earrings: Stella & Dot –  / Bracelets: Mantraband and Goody (because I forgot to take off my dang hairband, doh!) / Lip: MAC Russian Red

On Luca: Top: Carters – similar for fall / Shorts: Carters – similar / Shoes: Keens

Last month was my first time trying Trunk Club by Nordstrom and I was really happy with it! The top you see here was chosen by my stylist, and she hit the nail on the head with my style personality! I love wearing black, and I also love a BOLD print, so this was right up my alley. She took the time to ask me lots of questions before presenting me with my Trunk to review. She also chose items that were a little outside of my comfort zone to try that I ended up loving even though I may not have chosen it while shopping myself. As a busy mama with a lot of summer obligations, I really didn’t have time to get to the store and choose outfits for vacation, so this was JUST was I needed, and I was super happy with what she chose! I’m excited to try out another Trunk for fall, and I’m also pumped to share some of my other Trunk Club picks from August, so stay tuned!

We have a couple more days left of summertime around here before school begins, so while today kicks off my Back to Basics Health + Fitness Challenge Group, we will be soaking up these last moments before our carefree days come to an end. I have to admit as amazing as this summer has been, I am looking forward to getting into a routine again! And to also have a bit of mommy time to work and get things done during the day! I am getting that “back to school” excited feeling that I used to get as a child. Who knew I would have it as a mom as well? My babies are growing up, and I am so happy for them to have these new adventures and excited to share in this journey with them through their eyes.

What are your thoughts on “back to school?” An exciting time or a time of dread? Comment below and share your feeling, and also your thoughts on the white after Labor Day rule!

Happy Tuesday!

XO,

Gina

Top Knot

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Floral Bomber: Macy’s (now on sale! – and yes, I got this from the Junior’s section haha) / Denim: AG Jeans (old) / Foral Tennis Shoes: Forever 21 (similar here, here, and here / Sunglasses: Brickyard Buffalo / Lip: MAC Snob / Nails: Essie Mint Candy Apple

I’m still playing lots of catch up over here on photos I took from our April vacations! On the way down to Asheville, North Carolina, we made an overnight stop at a little mountain town along the way called Staunton in Virginia. And just so you know…it’s pronounced STAN-TON. The “U” is silent, as we found out from a local photographer right before we left town. Yes, we had been saying it wrong the entire time.

We chose this particular town, because hubby read the book, Omnimore’s Dilemma, and was really interested in getting local food from Polyface Farms. It also seemed like an interesting place with hiking nearby. On the way down we hiked in the Shenandoah Valley along the Dark Hollow Falls Trailhead, which was beautiful and so nice this time of year. We celebrated our hike by checking into the beautiful Stonewall Jackson Hotel and getting ready for an AMAZING dinner at Zynodoa. We had impeccable southern inspired food all locally sourced from Virginia’s best farms. If you ever find yourself in this little mountain town, this spot is a must!

The next morning, after my hotel room workout sesh (thank you Beachbody on Demand!) and after getting a little work done, hubby brought us back coffees (oh how I miss coffeeeee! If you don’t know, I am doing the Ultimate Reset program right now, which means no coffee ahhhh). Anyway…for breakfast we walked down to a little health food store called Cranberry’s that had a restaurant inside as well. We got the orangest (is that a word?) eggs I have ever seen in my entire life! And yes…they were from Polyface Farms! Hubby was so happy. The food was on point and super delicious. We walked around town a little more, met a few interesting local folks with some great recs for rest of our trip, and continued onward to Asheville.

I have to say this little town of Staunton, Virginia was quite a nice surprise!

Hope you all had an amazing weekend celebrating Mother’s Day!!! We had a wonderful day celebrating all the mamas and also our wedding anniversary!

Today starts Week 2 of the Ultimate Reset for the myself and the hubby. Feeling a lot more prepared both physically and mentally this week, and ready to rock it.

Make it a great week everyone!

XO,

Gina

Double Celebration

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Photos by: Senshi Photography

Dress: Target / Shoes: Call It Spring / Earrings: Forever 21 / Zack’s Outfit: No idea / Boys Outfits – Shirts: Old Navy (similar) / Shoes: Old Navy (Nico / Luca) / Shorts: Nautica

Today marks a double celebration for our family. Not only is it Mother’s Day, but the hubby and I are celebrating our 6 Year Wedding Anniversary! These three guys are my world, and I am so incredibly grateful to call them mine. Today this mama is feeling blessed.

❤ ❤ ❤

I also want to wish my own mama, my grandmother, and my mother-in-law a very special Mother’s Day! I wouldn’t be here where I am today without the three of you. Love you all to the moon and back.

And to all the other mamas out there…what are you doing to celebrate?

Today we met up with our original Brooklyn mamas crew who were in town for a big playground playdate. Can’t believe our “babies” are now almost 4! Time flies! It was such a nice time and a gorgeous NYC spring day to boot.

Hope you are celebrating and enjoying this special day!

XO,

Gina

Oscar Red Carpet Favs

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BOOM! I don’t necessarily have these in any particular order. However, this power couple had to top my list. Jessica Biel looking fierce as ever in the this bold bombshell gold gown by Kaufman Franco.

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Emma Stone looking simply stunning as she graces the Red Carpet for her nomination in La La Land. Loving this chic, gold Givenchy Haute Couture number, especially with that bottom fringe and her Old Hollywood Glam hairstyle.

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Hailee Steinfeld looks dreamy in this romantic Ralph & Russo gown. Just loving the texture and the neckline here. And the back…ahhh hard to see from this angle, but it’s to die for.

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Can we say classy and chic right here? Isabelle Huppert shows that you can rock the red carpet at any age. Obsessed with her Armani Privé gown, lip color, hair…all of it. She looks incredibly beautiful.

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Michelle Williams always manages to make my favorites, and this year did not disappoint. Love the plunging neckline and the sparkle on this Louis Vuitton gown. Her hair is also looking super chic.

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Now, Emma Roberts’ vintage Armani Privé dress is very similar to Michelle’s which is probably why I also like it! It has a similar neckline, and she also shows a little peek-a-boo on the side angle which I typically despise, but here I think it works. Obsessed with the lace and also her hair and makeup for an overall stunning look.

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You may see a trend here with lots of golds and nudes on the list, but again this Armani Privé gown on Nicole Kidman also makes my list! I’m loving all the embroidery and detail, and her lip color is on point. Stunning as usual Nicole!

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Finally a classic black dress to make the list. This Dior Haute Couture gown is simple, but Kirsten really rocks it. I love the shoes, the pockets in the dress and her hair and make up really rounds out her total look.

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I ALWAYS love me some Marchesa, and Octavia Spencer looks FABULOUS in this custom designed gown. Loving those whimsical feathers, and think she looks fantastic.

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Last, but not least, here is a little color to the list with Ruth Negga in Valentino. Love the sheerness, the lace, the neckline, and she is just really doing red proud on that Red Carpet!

Okay, now it’s time to hear YOUR favorites!!! Please share below!!!

Happy Oscars to all!

XO,

Gina

Day Date

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It’s not every day you get a day date in Manhattan. But hubby and I had been wanting to do a “Paint Nite” event for the longest time, and when we saw one with a cool painting for 1:00 on a Saturday, we jumped at the chance. Thankfully, our babysitter was able to switch her plans around to be there for us, and we decided to make a whole day of it, treating ourselves to brunch beforehand. While typically trying to make the healthy choice as a health + fitness coach, I dove into some chicken + waffles and a Bloody Mary at Whitman + Bloom. It’s not every day you get a day date as parents, right? We really got into the painting and became totally swept into the whole experience despite my lack of artistic ability (hubby is pretty good though!) We had a ton of fun getting out of our comfort zones, and I have to say, I was pretty impressed with how our work turned out! Feel free to check my Instagram for the finished product!

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Dress: Forever 21 / Jacket: Goodnight Macaroon / Booties: H&M / Necklaces: Vintage + Stella & Dot / Sunglasses: Brickyard Buffalo

Wow, what a weekend! A day date, and a 60+ degree day in February? Whaaat? Crazy. We are on Winter Break over here, so mama is trying to come up with a plan of action for activities and things to do, while still being able to get some work done around here! Haha. I have a feeling it’s going to be a crazy week, but a fun one!

Hope you’re enjoying the holiday weekend and cheers to an awesome week ahead!

XO,

Gina