The holidays can be stressful or they can be merry.
These last few years I have really focused on making them the latter.
I try to give my presence instead of stressing about presents and try to give from a place of intention rather than out of obligation.
When gifting out of intention, there is so much less stress to just get people checked off the list & more thought of what will bring unique joy to my loved ones! For me, it’s is all about shopping small, smart + savvy while still giving the highest of quality! Typically, I won’t gift something that I wouldn’t buy myself ( unless it’s a round of golf or something ;) ) because I believe that my friends & family deserve the same quality that I use myself. Think organic, hand crafted, local if possible + from small businesses.
The gifts I was struggling with this year happened to be for the women in my life.
I wanted to give them something experiential. Something to calm + soothe.
Because what they all really need is a serious break.
A spa-like escape from the busy schedules, the juggling, the stresses of everyday.
Last year we gifted my mom a massage from one of her favorite spas, although it didn’t get used until half way through the year. Now does that communicate just how busy she is or what? So, this year the gears were turning a bit differently for me. I wanted to be able to gift her and the other non-stop women in my life (you go #girlbosses) a little retreat that they can use daily. A little something to treat yourself, to remind you to slow down, to give yourself a moment of solace.
That’s when I thought back to one of my favorite gifts I have ever received. . .
My favorite fragrance from Kai.
Imagine a soft, dreamy scent of the most delightful gardenias.
Until this year, I had only known of their perfume but boy, am I glad that I took another look at this amazing brand.
Their products are–
paraben, sulfate, phthalate, phosphate & gluten free.
packaged in recyclable materials.
made in the u.s.a.
& smell like heaven!
I can’t get enough & they carry all of these amazing products. . .
Today I’m bringing you my FRIDAY FAVORITES!
These are the things that I’m currently obsessed with using or the everyday essentials I’ve used for years! Hope you enjoy. . .
PROi HAIR DRYER | I’m an air-dry type of girl––or at least I used to be! Maybe I used to prefer air-drying because admittedly, I still had a Conair Blow Dryer from 10 years ago up until I found this baby! (Yikes! I know!) Now, drying my hair is fast & easy. The PROi Hair Dryer is enriched with negative ions for professional-level styling, leaving my hair feeling silky after & cutting down on my dry time on those mornings I don’t have time to air dry!
WHIRL TRIO CURLING WAND | I am really particular about styling products + tools because I don’t use many! So, if I’m going to use something, I want it to be spectacular. This curling wand is the BOMB! What I love is that with the whirl trio from t3Micro you have the one base + three interchangeable heads–all different sizes. It’s perfect for travel–only making you to bring one unit even if you want multiple looks! If you want smooth curls, beachy waves or textured volume–you’ve got it!
I also recommend the defined curls attachment + the polished curls attachment!
31 BITS NECKLACE | This gorgeous piece seems to get slipped over my neck more than not lately. It’s dainty, simple + goes with everything! I just love 31 Bits’ designs. They are my jam!
PRIMALLY PURE BODY BUTTER + TONER | I’m not a big fan of lotion at all. Most leave your hands oily or are filled with a bunch of gross chemicals (yea, check your label next time you go to put some on!) so, when I found this body butter from Primally Pure–I fell in love! It has the loveliest scent, ingredients + feel on my hands! & the ‘Everything Spray’ – *major heart eyes* – is jam-packed with awesomeness & you can use it for everything (as a facial toner, after shave to prevent ingrowns, underarm refresher, or to soothe an inflammatory skin condition). I can’t recommend both highly enough!
SMILE SCIENCES | For those of you who are seeking out whitening products (outside of the natural oral care I recommend) I would say this brand over any others I’ve tried in the years passed! My biggest complaint about other brands was the sensitivity it causes–well, Smile Sciences prides themselves in offering a product that is pain & sensitivity free!
AERIE CLASSIC BRALETTE | For those of you who read my deodorant post, you know that I believe in doing everything I can to lower my risk of breast cancer. One of the things I do is give myself a break from the underwire as much as I can! Thank goodness for these darling, comfy bralettes from Aerie! I wear many of their different bralette styles on repeat. Oh & they’re on sale for $20 right now–what a steal!
YL TEA TREE OIL + FRANKINCENSE OIL | I have sworn by these two little beauties for years now! Tea Tree is perfect for blemishes (I replaced nasty acne creams with this). Frankincense promotes healthy cell regeneration + keeps existing cells and tissues healthy. It’s wonderful for your skin health by helping treat dry skin, reverse signs of aging + reduce the appearance of stretch marks and scars!
If you want more info on essential oils, shoot me an email!
KAIA NATURALS BAMBOO TAPIOCA BEADS | This is a cleanser + exfoliator + mask made from 100% natural ingredients: coconut, chickpeas, deep cleansing clay and a touch of tapioca to absorb oil. Simply activate the concentrated powder by adding water to leave skin feeling soft and hydrated. It’s even great for the most sensitive skin-types! The more water you add the more gentle the exfoliation. & if you’d like to use it as a mask, mix it with less water & leave it on for 10 minutes! Kaia Naturals has made this product with no additives, no fillers or preservatives. It’s 100% natural, vegan and ocean-friendly. That makes me one happy lady!
KAI FRAGRANCE | The smell of Kai takes me straight to paradise–truly. It’s light & airy yet mesmerizing. The exotic scent is also amazing because it is paraben, sulfate, phthalate + phosphate free. It’s also cruelty free + vegan. Also, years ago I once heard that Jennifer Aniston wears this scent (I have no idea if that’s true or not, but if Jen loves it, I knew I had to try it ;) )
SCHMIDT’S DEODORANT | This clean, herbaceous fragrance of Lavender + Sage deodorant is soothing + subtle. So gentle on the skin too! It provides all-day odor protection and wetness relief! & if you read my deodorant post, you know that it’s so important that it’s free of aluminum, propylene glycol, parabens & phthalates. *insert hands up emoji here*
HUMBLE HILO BAG | I love this carry-all bag! It’s come along on many trips with me. It’s super functional as well as beautiful. The bags from Humble Hilo are individually handmade, handcrafted from one of a kind huipiles from Guatemala. A portion of your purchase supports your choice of humanitarian projects–I love products that benefit something greater.
(I’m now eyeing their Hilo Backpack)
TAN BABE SUNLESS TANNER | . . . I haven’t used self-tanner since a very bad attempt at using some as an adolescent. Although when I stumbled upon Tan Babe on Instagram, I noticed that it was all-natural, vegan, organic and oil based which totally caught my eye! All of these things proving so different from the grocery store brands pumped full of crap. My first thought was, ‘hey maybe I’ll give it another go!,’ because who doesn’t need a little help during the winter months? The amazing thing about this brand is that it dries instantly, didn’t stain my clothes or sheets & didn’t turn me orange or streaky! So, now I just wish I could tell my eighth grade self that I did, in fact, conquer the self tanner finally!
Also, here’s the polished curls attachment I briefly touched on earlier! Love the versatility of this curling wand!
Well, that’s what I’m obsessing over currently!
I hope that I pointed you in the direction of something that can be of benefit to you! Which things caught your eye?
What are your current FRIDAY FAVORITES? I’d love to hear!
Photography By Aaron Haynes