BlissAndBubbly

14 Weekend Getaway Musthaves

I love a good weekend getaway. Especially to a destination that’s within driving distance of your home. It’s really the perfect vacation. You’re not spending tons of money on flights, so you can kind of splurge a little on a nicer hotel room & fantastic food. We live in the DFW area of Texas ( Dallas Fort Worth ) which is 3ish hours from Austin, which also just so happens to only be about an hour from one of my favorite places on earth – Fredericksburg.

Fredericksburg is Texas Wine Country and it’s beyond perfect. My boyfriend and I have gone there every year ( sometimes twice ) since we have been together. It’s where we went on our first “vacation” together so it’s quite sentimental to me. It’s also SO ROMANTIC there. Perfect for couples wanting to escape reality for a day or two, relax, enjoy some amazing wine, and spend quality time together. I plan on doing a whole Fredericksburg To – Do post next week when we get back, so be on the look out! 🙂

Today I wanted to share the clothing items that I always pack for a Spring weekend getaway. I am a serious overpacker ( I just like to have options, ok! ), but it’s alright because I accept that about myself LOL. So I had to really, really think about the things that are kind of my weekend getaway staples, and not share my whole entire wardrobe with ya’ll… because I wouldn’t put it past myself to try and just shove my whole closet into my weekender and be on my way!

Texas has officially hit 90 degrees, so this weekend’s outfits will be geared toward staying cool, while still looking fab for some great Instagrams ( #notashamed ).

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1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14.

  1. RIPPED JEANS – These are the perfect item to bring because 1, you can wear them in the car and be comfy but still cute if you end up going to straight to dinner or something when you get there, and 2, because they go with literally everything!
  2. WHITE V NECK – I mean does this really need a description? You can wear this in the car, you can wear it under the denim jacket, you can wear it for a day walking around town, or just to be comfortable hanging out in the hotel room.
  3. OFF THE SHOULDER DRESS – So I don’t know if I’m the only girl that’s completely obsessed with off the shoulder everything or not but… this is the perfect way to look dressy OR casual, depending on what you are planning on doing. Also, if the weather ends up being 90 degrees, you’ll look chic & feel comfortable.
  4. WHITE MAXI DRESS – Every woman needs a good, simple, maxi dress. These can be dressed up or down with some added jewelry and heels, or sandals and even can be used as a swimsuit cover up. Not to mention how comfortable they are if you end up having too many margs & a whole basket of chips and queso ( like I fully plan on doing LOL ).
  5. OFF THE SHOULDER SHIRT – More off the shoulder, don’t kill me 😉 They’re just PERFECT for spring & summer, in my opinion! You can wear this with jeans, or jean shorts, add a chocker and some mules and you have a totally cute, perfect spring outfit.
  6. DISTRESSED DENIM JACKET – Perfect if the weather is a little cooler and you need to throw on a light jacket. Also, denim is so in this season! Super fun.
  7. NUDE MULES – A spring wardrobe staple. Not to mention extremely comfortable to walk in and can completely dress up any outfit, but they also have the ability of being super casual.
  8. SUNNIES – Because, duh.
  9. LACE UP SWEATER – A way to be comfortable, but still cute, ya know? Can be worn with distressed jeans, white jeans, or your jean shorts! Very versatile.
  10. JEAN SHORTS – If you end up having a pool day, or it’s just too warm for jeans, jean shorts come to the rescue! Front tuck your white v neck, throw on the mules or some espadrilles and you’re good to go!
  11. WHITE DENIM – Another spring wardrobe staple. White denim looks so fresh and bright with all the colors of spring and can be totally dressy, or totally casual. Perfect if you don’t know what kinds of places you’ll be having dinners at and want to be prepared for either option.
  12. NEUTRAL CROSSBODY – No one wants to lugging around a huge, heavy tote walking around exploring a new city. Crossbody bags are the perfect size to hold your lipstick, your phone, and your wallet. What else do you really need, right?
  13. WHITE ESPADRILLES – The sneaker of spring and summer! Comfy, cute, beachy, just pure perfection. They can be worn with dresses, jeans, shorts, the options are endless! Perfect for a day of exploring in true comfort and style.
  14. STUDDED SANDALS – If you want to be a little dressier than espadrilles, but are still looking for comfort, flat sandals are the way to go. I personally just love the studs!

Did I miss anything? What are some of ya’lls weekend getaway must haves?

Thanks for reading!!

XO, Madison

How To Get A Good Night’s Sleep

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Hey ya’ll, happy Wednesday! I hope you’ve all had productive weeks so far! I personally find it incredibly difficult to be productive in any aspect of life if I haven’t gotten enough sleep. I am one of those people who just literally cannot function if I haven’t gotten at least 9 hours of sleep.

I know some of ya’ll might think that’s funny or ridiculous or whatever, but IT’S TRUE and it’s just who I am.

It’s been drilled into our brains for forever that we’re supposed to get between 7 & 8 hours of sleep a night to maintain a healthy lifestyle. I take that a verrrrry general guideline, because, SURPRISE, everyone is different. I am a big fan of listening to your body, because it will tell you exactly what it needs, and my body just needs a little more sleep than the average person, and that’s ok!

I’ve known this about myself from a super duper young age. My mom tells this story about me to everyone because it seriously just describes exactly who I am, it’s so funny. She says that when I was little, no matter what was going on, who was over, if I was hanging out with friends, literally there could be Ariel herself from The Little Mermaid in the living room, and as soon as 8 o clock rolled around ( or as soon as I felt tired ) I would say good night to everyone, and take myself to bed.

And I literally haven’t changed A BIT. I pride myself on being able to go to sleep early, because I feel like a lot of people have trouble with that. Weather it’s because there just isn’t enough time in the day to get everything done ( I have issues with this too, just like everyone else ) or you just can’t turn your brain off, or stress from the day, but whatever the reason, sleep is too important for our bodies to just keep putting it off!

It’s so funny because my boyfriend is the EXACT OPPOSITE of me in this regard. He literally hates sleep. I think it’s so funny. He’s like “why would I sleep when I could be getting stuff done instead” and I’m over here like counting down the hours until bedtime because I know when my body needs that time to heal.

I get suuuuuuper irritable, my patience with anything & everything goes straight out the window, I get headaches, I don’t have as much of an appetite, the list can go on. My body just NEEDS an adequate amount of sleep to function properly. As do most peoples! It’s when our bodies do most of our healing and when our brains get a much needed rest. It’s a very necessary part of it.

I wanted to share with ya’ll some of my favorite tips that I force upon my sweet boyfriend, and myself sometimes, that really do promote getting a really great night of sleep.

  • Set Up A Routine. I think this is important because weather you are aware of it, or not, your body responds to routines. Habits, if you will. Around 8 every single night I brush my teeth, wash my face, and turn on our essential oil diffuser ( always with Lavender Oil ) and I can feel body beginning to wind down because this is what I do every single night before I go to bed, so it knows it’s about to get some sleep. It sounds kind of silly typing that out, but seriously, try a routine of your own around the same time every night for a week or two, and let me know if you notice a difference!
  • Diffuse Lavender Oil. I just mentioned this as a part of my nightly routine above, but it deserves it’s own bullet point because it’s so amazing. Lavender is known for it’s healing, sedative, and antiseptic properties. It’s calming aroma can be used as a natural way to treat headaches, anxiety, depression, emotional stress and nervous tension. Diffusing it before bed and while you sleep is ideal for calming your nerves, mind and body for a great nights sleep. Just be sure it’s 100% PURE Lavender Oil, not just a fragrance, or you won’t get any of the benefits.
  • Sleepy Time Tea. Probably the greatest invention ever. We like the one from Trader Joes ( it’s called Well Rested Tea ), and I always add a little raw local honey. I make this for us around 7:15 or 7:30 after I’ve cleaned up from dinner, while were watching a netflix show, just relaxing from the day. There is a noticeable difference for me with the amount of times I wake up in the middle of night when I don’t drink this before bed. It’s a tip I will recommend for forever!
  • Work Out Regularly. Doing some sort of physical activity everyday is not only fantastic for you body, but also for calming your mind.
  • CALM Powder.. I’ve talked about my obsession with this stuff on my blog before, and I’ll probably talk about it again because it’s incredible. It’s basically just Magnesium powder. I like to call it “natures Xanax” because it seriously has that effect, without the horrific side effects of taking actual medication, such as Xanax. It’s an all natural stress & anxiety reliever. I add a tbs to some water and drink it before going to sleep. I originally started drinking it about a year ago because I was suffering from AWFUL headaches every single day and I thought that my Magnesium levels might be low. Not only did this really really help with my headaches, it helped with my stress levels as well. That’s just a no brainer. The lower your stress levels, the better you’ll sleep.
  • Keep Your Room Clean & Organized. This might be a personal preference, but I’m going to share it anyways. I literally can’t relax when the house/our bedroom is a disaster. I need everything to be clean and organized, no clutter. My boyfriend however, is the opposite ( another one! I guess opposites really do attract LOL ). It’s like his eyeballs just don’t see a mess when there is one. It’s kind of an amazing talent he has! So if you haven’t been sleeping well and your room is a little less than organized, try cleaning it up and having it look clutter free before bed tonight and see if it makes a difference! It might relax your mind just enough to get a really good night’s sleep.
  • Don’t Look At Your Phone. Ok sooooo, I’m not sure how doable this one really is, but just try! The blue light electronics emit really hinder sleep, weather you’re aware of it, or not. However, my boyfriend needs something to distract his brain long enough from thinking in order for him to fall asleep, so we usually watch Netlfix in bed. When I get sleepy, I just roll over and fall asleep and he’ll put headphones in and watch until he falls asleep. So I guess this tip is kind of a more to each their own type of tip.

And those are my tips for getting a good night of sleep! Did I miss anything? What do ya’ll do to sleep well? Please share!

Thank you for reading!

XO, Madison

March Reading List

Well hello there, I am so glad you found your way to Bliss And Bubbly! I usually post my monthly reading lists on the 1st of each month but life got in the way this month, what can I say. On another note…. can you believe it’s MARCH??? What is going on?! 2017 is literally just flying by.

March in Texas is usually when the weather has a really, really, realllllly hard time making up it’s mind. It goes from sunny, perfect, & 75 to the next day being cloudy, rainy & in the 50’s. I am a sunshine at all times kind of girl, so March is usually when I need a little boost of something happy to get me though until the sweet summertime.

The theme for Bliss And Bubbly’s March Reading List is: HAPPINESS.

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  1. Everything, Everything By Nicola Yoon –  This book is being made into a movie that comes out this summer ( I think? ) and is the sweet story of a girl who has a rare disease and is allergic to everything. She’s never been outside, never touched nature, never breathed fresh air. A new family moves in next door & she falls in love from a far with their son. It’s a heartbreakingly romantic novel about doing what makes you happy, no matter the consequences.
  2. Szen Zone By Gary Szenderski –  I was sent this book last month, and you can read my full review here, but I am adding it to this list because it’s a beyond incredible read. I kept wanting to describe it as “life changing” because I didn’t know how else to articulate how impactful it was to me. If you have any interest in making really, really positive changes in your life, you need to order this book ASAP.
  3. The Happiness Project By Gretchen Rubin –  This a book of stories from personal experiences of the author all about tiny changes you can make today, and everyday, to live a happier life and just have more fun. Sounds like the perfect rainy day read to me!
  4. A House For Happy Mothers By Amuyla Malladi –  This is the story of two women on opposite sides of the planet who have the lives each of the other one dreams of and how through the creation of children their lives become intertwined. This one sounds like a book that will make you appreciate what you have and really just be thankful. Plus I just love stories ( real or fiction ) about motherhood!
  5. Whatever Makes You Happy By Lisa Grumwald –  This a novel of a woman’s journey to find happiness amongst being a mom, wife, sister, and friend. It will be a very lighthearted read about literally doing whatever makes you happy, even if it isn’t the “right” thing to do at the time.
  6. Happy People Read And Drink Coffee By Agnés Martin – Lugand –  I listed this one last but it’s actually first on my to – read list because it sounds SO GOOD I can’t wait for it to come in the mail! It’s the story of a woman living her perfect life in Paris, until she loses her husband and child in a sudden accident. She moves to a small town to heal on her own, and ends up falling in love all over again with the last person she ever thought she would even be able to fall in love with. It’s the story of redefining what it means to be happy after a tragedy. Ahhh it just sounds so good.

That’s all, until next month! Order these and get to reading! 🙂 I’d love to hear what ya’ll think of them after you read them. Like sitting down and having a cup of coffee with each other discussing the book, but over the internet. Totally normal! 😉

Thanks for reading!

XO, Madison

Ever Heard Of Maca?

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Hello hello, welcome to Bliss And Bubbly and happy Wednesday! I feel like this week has been like four years long. Does that make any sense? LOL there’s definitely more than one person in my life who tell you that I have a small flare for the exaggerations… but really, this has just been a long ass week.

I do my absolute best to keep it light, happy, and positive, especially on here. But I also want to be real & authentic, and the truth is that life isn’t always a perfectly put together vase of light pink Peonies, YA KNOW.

I’ve talked a lot on here about how I’ve always really struggled with dealing with stress and anxiety in a healthy way, and it’s definitely something I will need to work on every single day, probably for forever. And that’s ok!! Because shit is GOING to happen. That’s life, my friends. The trick is ( I’ve slowly learned ) to accept that fact, and do what you can to help prevent those feelings of stress and anxiety before they completely overwhelm you.

Stress is a nasty, nasty thing. It’s been deemed “the silent killer” for a reason ya’ll. There is study after study and research upon research begging us as humans to really focus on CHILLING OUT. Stress has a way of manifesting itself into very physical forms and causing real damage to our bodies.

You know the common symptoms: headaches/migranes, sweating, shaking, stomach aches, throwing up, tightness in your chest, difficulty breathing, difficulty sleeping, the list can go on and on. If you don’t really, really make a conscious effort to help your body rid itself of those feelings & hormones caused by stress, it can take a huuuuge toll on your overall health, even your longevity of life.

About two years ago I started having super weird back problems that basically just made me feel like I was an 80 year old woman that needed a walker to get around on a daily basis. Another fun fact about me is that I literally hate taking medication. You know when you go to the doctor and they say “ok so take this twice a day and you may feel a little nauseas but other than that you should be good. Only 1 in 5 billion people suffer from these side effects.” I AM ALWAYS THAT 1. And that is not an exaggeration at all. I’m always like “ok well is that side effect death, because if so, give me something else” like kind of a joke but not really LOL. So, when these issues starting coming to the surface ( turns out I have a herniated disc on the very last vertebrae in my spine ) I vowed that I would not take medication for it. So my boyfriend told me about all these different vitamins and supplements that I had never heard of that can help with EVERYTHING. I was amazed.

I mean we all know were supposed to take our vitamins, right? But do we know which vitamins we really need to be taking? The best way to know for sure 100% is to probably get a blood test and find out what you are deficient in. But if you don’t want to do that, take some time and really listen to your body, then do tons of your own research.

I could do a whole other post on the vitamins I take and why….

 But, what I really wanted to tell ya’ll about today is MACA.

Ohhhhh, Maca, Maca, Maca.

This brings me back to everything I was saying about taking preventative measures when dealing with stress. Maca is a root in the Raddish family grown in the mountains of Peru. It’s nicknamed the “Peruvian Ginseng”.

There are a few major benefits that I’ll share with ya’ll but the one two I take it for are hormone/ mood balancing, and helping my body with the effects of stress and anxiety.

Maca has these cute little things called Aptogen’s in it. An Aptogen is a non toxic substance that enhances the bodies natural ability to resist environmental stressors, therefore improving our bodies ability to deal with all other kinds of stress, as well. They function in the body by normalizing and balancing the bodies systems, particularly the Endocrine and Immune Systems.

Basically, they can calm down the systems that are stressed or over worked, while at the same time, strengthening the systems that need a little boost. They bring the overactive and under active immune and hormonal systems back into a healthy range. Balancing you out. Ideal, right?

Maca is packed with amino acids, polyunsaturated fatty acids, carbohydrates, vitamins and minerals that result in a mood boosting, energy leveling, brain balancing supplement. The Calcium, Phosphorus, and Vitamins B1 & B2 promote muscle growth, and calm the nerves, while controlling anxiety and alleviating mood swings. YES PLEASE.

There are also Alkaloids present in Maca making assimilation of all these nutrients into the cells very easy on your body.

All around win, and those are just two of the benefits.

Maca is also known for:

  • Being an aphrodisiac. Meeooowwww. It can boost the libido and increase stamina.
  • Womens health benefits: alleviate menstrual cramps, body pain, hot flashes, and as we just discussed, mood swings and anxiety.
  • Skin: can help clear acne and blemishes and has been reported to lessen skin sensitivity.

So, wow, that was a lot of information. Try taking it for a few weeks and let me know how you feel!! I take the capsules every morning with some juice ( I am a huge baby and have this weird mental block where I can’t take pills with water LOL ) but it’s also available in powder form where you can add it to smoothies, salad dressings, whatever you feel like.

Whole Foods sells it, I linked a few from Amazon above, buy it wherever or however you like, just be sure it’s non GMO!

Should I do a post on the other vitamins that I take & why?

Thanks sooo much for reading! It means so much to me 🙂

And PS: I’m not a doctor, and I’m sharing what works for me. You should always consult your doctor before trying/taking anything new.

XO, Madison.

Book Review – Szen Zone

Happy Monday! Did everybody have a good weekend? I caught up on a lot of sleep and cleaned the whole apartment, so not super exciting but very productive!

A few weeks ago I was contacted about writing a book review on a book called Szen Zone. I was immediately intrigued because my blog has a very “zen” feel to it in the sense that I try my hardest to promote self love and natural living. Plus I have a slight obsession with self help books that are about making changes to better yourself and better your life.

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When the book came in the mail I couldn’t wait to dive right in! If I hadn’t been so busy I definitely could have read this in one sitting, no problem what so ever. Gary Szenderski ( see what he did there with the “Szen”! So clever ) has a way of writing that makes you feel like you are just sitting down with a cup of really fantastic coffee chatting with him about life. And I LOVE that.

Szen Zone is one of those books that you’ll want to keep with you at all times in your purse or in your car because it’s not a book that you necessarily have to read cover to cover. You can open it up to any page, any short story, you want and be provided with major inspiration or advice. Especially when regarding CHANGE of any kind.

The thing I love most about this book is that each piece of writing seems to just come to you at the perfect time. Like whatever I was going through while reading each section I kept thinking to myself, “oh my god, how did he know?” It was the exact piece of advice, inspiration, or encouragement I needed to get through the doubt or struggle I was experiencing at the time.

Gary’s writing makes you feel like you CAN come out of any situation with a positive change made in your life. And it’s an absolutely wonderful feeling.

Change is inevitable. We alllll need to accept that, sometime or another, as hard as that may be. But why not make them all positive changes?

You can pick up this book and read any page, any story, and be touched on so many levels. I would describe reading this book as having your mom and your best friend there for you for a conversation or advice at the turn of a page, any time of day.

I recommend this book so whole heartedly to each and every one of you. And I know I recommend a lot of books to ya’ll, but if you take any advice from me, it’s to read this book.

I promise you will not be disappointed in any way, shape, or form.

Would ya’ll like it if I did a giveaway with a copy of this book?

XO, Madison.

Weekly Chat – Favorite Facial Oil

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Good morning & HAPPY FRIDAY! What are ya’lls weekend plans? So far they’re saying that it’s going to be warm but cloudy… so hopefully that will change to warm and sunny so we can spend some time outside 🙂 I had my first tattoo removal session this morning and that laser is NO JOKE. Holy guacamole. If anyone has ever had a tattoo removed and some weird tips or tricks to help it heal quicker/dull the pain afterwards, please share with me!

I had kind of a tough week and I just kept saying to myself, “everything is fine, everything is fine” so when I saw that graphic of “JUST PEACHY” I was like YES even better! Because no matter what’s going on, everything is still just peachy. We are so lucky to be living this life, ya know??

Anyways, moving on. For the weekly chat this week I wanted to share something with ya’ll that I’ve been obsessed with for a few weeks now because it completely changed my skin and the way my makeup sets and everything. It’s Organic Rose Hip Seed Oil. I feel like oils are just the fountain of youth and everyone needs to just get on board already.

The one I’ve been using is very inexpensive and I get it off of Amazon so it’s delivered to my door, just how I like it. On a completely unrelated note… I don’t think I could live without Amazon Prime LOL. Anyone else?

Ok so Rose Hip Seed Oil is one of the greatest things that you can do for you skin, starting at any age. The ancient Egyptians and Means used it for it’s incredible healing and anti aging properties. Today, we can use it for:

  • Correcting dark spots.
  • Reducing fine lines & wrinkles.
  • Treating eczema and acne scarring.
  • Treatment of infections and boosting the immune system.
  • Reducing inflammation and redness.

Already completely IDEAL, right?

The anti aging benefits come from it’s high levels of antioxidants and it’s ability to penetrate the deeper layers of skin, while it’s high levels of Vitamin C & A, reveal new layers of fresh skin, promoting skin regeneration, while plumping and stimulating the skins natural collagen production.

The antioxidants also protect against free radicals and sun damage, while the Vitamin A combined with the fatty acids present in the oil can improve skins tone, texture and pigmentation.

I apply a few drops at night after I cleanse and tone with Witch Hazel, then again in the morning after I apply sunscreen.

It’s improved my overall skin tone and texture SO MUCH. I’ve always had some issues with patchy redness and dryness especially in the winter, but since I started using Rose Hip Seed Oil, those issues are completely gone! I’ve also noticed a major difference in the little tiny fine lines that were starting to form around my eyes and my skin is just over all plumper and healthier.

It’s also great to apply in the morning as a makeup primer! My BB/CC cream or foundation goes on so much smoother and applying it over top of the oil gives me such a perfect, healthy glow.

I’m just obsessed with this stuff, I figured some of ya’ll might like to try it out as well 🙂

Let me know what you think!! & have a fabulous weekend. Drink some champagne with the people you love ( or your cat, which ever! ) and cheers with me on snapchat ( maddshardy )!

Thank you for reading!

XO, Madison.

Drugstore Makeup – The Best Of The Best

Don’t you just LOVE a trip to the drugstore or especially to Target? Just uninterrupted time to browse the isles, read labels, try on clothes, and search through the makeup and skin care isles like you have nothing else to do for the rest of the day? I don’t know about ya’ll but it’s a major stress reliever for me. That may sound silly to some of you but there’s something about shopping for makeup that doesn’t cost a fortune that just really makes me feel good inside LOL. Especially when you’re ballin on a budget like this girl right here.

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The negatives of these trips though can sometimes result in over spending because in my head I’m like “oh this is so much cheaper than a designer brand I can buy this and ten other things I don’t really need!” #girllogic, right? LOL. Also, sometimes, it can result in products that are less than ideal. So with this post I hope to help someone out there avoid the same drugstore beauty isle mistakes I have with this list of my personal faves!

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FACE:

  1. L’Oréal Magic Skin Beautifier BB Cream – I’ve been using this for years. It’s very inexpensive, they have a very wide range of shades to choose from and it WORKS. It comes out white in color, and blends to match your skin tone. I personally don’t ever wear foundation on my entire face, just my “problem” areas where I have some scarring and redness that I like to cover up. Particularly my chin and around my nose. This formula is super lightweight, which I love, and perfectly blurrs/covers up what I don’t want to show the world.
  2. Sonia Kashuk Undetectable Loose Illumination Powder – I use this in shade “light” and it’s my version of a setting powder. I apply it over my entire face, focusing mostly on the areas I just applied BB cream to. I love this one because it has a very light shimmer to it that doesn’t come off as HI IM A GIANT SPARKLE, it just gives me a nice healthy glow that I love. This is also the perfect product to pat on quickly if I’m in a rush to leave, and don’t have enough time for BB cream or anything else, just to blend my skin tone and be on my way. Totally ideal for those mornings when there just isn’t enough time.
  3. Sonia Kashuk Undercover Liquid Concealer – I wasn’t sure if I should put this under the face category or the eyes category because for me it doubles as a blemish/redness concealer and an under eye concealer. It has a cute little poof as the applicator, that helps the product go on smooth and blend out even smoother. It’s lightweight but thick enough to cover up ANYTHING. I highly, highly recommend this little guy.

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EYES:

  1. NYX Eyeshadow Base – I originally bought this in the white shade because they were out of the tan at the time, but ended up totally loving it! I thought it would be hard to blend and would change the color and pigmentation of my shadow, but it’s truly the perfect base and primer. I just use my pinkie finer and rub it all over my whole eyelid, wait a few seconds for it to dry and then apply my shadow.
  2. Maybelline 24K Nudes Eyeshadow Pallet – I’ll start this one off with a confession: I’ve been a Naked 2 Pallet addict since the day it came out. BUT when I recently started to really run low on my fave colors in the pallet, I started to try to find a similar pallet for less cost, because I’ll be really honest, I only use 3 of the colors LOL. Because of that, I just can’t justify spending $60 dollars for what is essentially 3 eyeshadows. I picked this Maybelline pallet up from Target a couple weeks ago and it’s almost EXACT to the colors I love in Naked 2! The colors are really pigmented, really soft and creamy to apply, and stay in place all day, even without a primer. AND it’s only $10!
  3. Pacifica Dream Big Mascara – I bought this literally last week because I was waiting for payday to buy my ride or die Diorshow mascara…. but I might just stick with this baby from now on! It’s all natural, SCORE, it’s made from minerals and natural oils, and it’s super conditioning for your lashes. ALSO it has this super cool feature where on the top of the wand you can twist it the right to compact the wand for more volume, then twist it to the right to stretch the wand back out for a more lengthening effect. Two in one?! And all natural?! Yes puuuhlease.
  4. Revlon Colorstay Brow Pencil – I am not even going to try to pretend that I am super talented at makeup by any means, especially when it comes to brows. I know I can’t be the only one LOL. It just seems like something that can be super easily messed up and eyebrows are just too important! Since I have natural red/auburn hair, my eyebrows and eyelashes are naturally very light. I literally use a few strokes of this pencil to fill in the realllllly light areas, and just make my eyebrows look more defined. NOTHING CRAZY. This product stays on all day, even if your rub your eyebrows. I use the shade “blonde”.

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LIPS:

  1. NYX Lingerie Matte Liquid Lipstick – NYX has some pretty amazing lip products. Their “Butter Glosses” are fab. Recently though, I’ve really been on a matte kick and this product is amazing! My only negative comment is that it is a little bit drying, but if I apply a balm beforehand that really helps. It acts more like a stain because it really does stay all day no matter how much you eat, drink, talk, kiss, or lick you lips. The colors are all very creamy and “moody”. My personal fave shade is “Lipli”. It’s like a mauvey purple. Works great for fall or spring!
  2. Revlon Matte Balms – I LOVE THESE! I have so many colors. My favorite for Spring is “Showy Flamboyant” because it’s the perfect deep pink that is just really complimentary to my natural lip and skin color. It goes with EVERYTHING. This product feels like a balm or a chapstick, but is matte ( yes yes yes ) and literally stays perfectly put all day, no matter what. Even the bright red shade. I wore it on the 4th last year and ate and drank and even swam a little bit and didn’t have to reapply once. Total, complete winner if you ask me.

drugstore_makeup drugstore_makeup

There ya have it, the best of the best drugstore products, in my opinion. And these are not necessarily the products that I use for my everyday makeup look, or date night makeup look, that is a whollllle other post ( coming soon! ).

What are you favorite drugstore products? We would all love an excuse for an extra trip to the drugstore! 😉

XO, Madison.

Home Decor Wishlist & Spring Cleaning Tips

Hey, hey! Happy Tuesday ya’ll! With tomorrow being the first day of March I am officially in full on Spring cleaning mode. I actually kind of am in Spring cleaning mode like at all times because I can’t stand clutter and having extra things just laying around, so I am always going through everything and re organizing EVERYTHING. I also love love love to throw things away. Which gets me in trouble sometimes with my sweet boyfriend ( Chris ) because sometimes I throw things away that one of us actually needed… whoopsie daisy! LOL.

But this year is different, for me at least, because Chris and I moved in together last summer and this is the first time I’m “officially” Spring cleaning our apartment. ( I’ll be sharing a Spring Cleaning: Closet Edition post next week, by the way ). Living with a significant other is an adventure and learning experience in many different ways, but organizing and finding room for each others belongings is a huge one. Our particular apartment doesn’t have the greatest storage options. And by doesn’t have the greatest, I mean we have 2 cabinets and like half of a coat closet. And that’s it. Sooo my organizational skills have really been put to the test this past year and I’ve had to get really creative with storage boxes and shelving.

Some quick tips I have for spring cleaning is to ONE, read the book The Life Changing Magic Of Tidying Up because it literally will change your life, and TWO, pick an area each day, work on it until it’s done, then move onto the next area. Don’t try to do your whole entire house at once. So start with the bathroom cabinets, then move onto the closet, then do the kitchen, then the bed side tables, you get it.

I don’t know about ya’ll, but after cleaning, organizing and purging I am always ready for some major shopping! Something about a new season always makes me want fresh new items around the house ( and in my closet! ). Plus I JUST LOVE home decor & design. It makes me sooo happy! We are moving in June, so I am doing my best not to purchase too many items that we end up just having to put in storage and won’t get much use out of, but I put together my Spring home decor wishlist for ya’ll below.

home_decor_wishlist1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14. 15. 16.

  1. GOLD BAR CART – It’s been a dream of mine to have a chic gold bar cart for a while now. I know they are super “trendy” right now, but I think that that is for a good reason! They double as gorgeous decoration for maybe an otherwise awkward corner, and perfect for storing alcohol bottles, glasses, and other drink accessories you may not have room for elsewhere in your home.
  2. CUTE CHAMPAGNE GLASSES – This doesn’t need any sort of explanation whatsoever if you know who I am at all. If not, let me just say: the champagne obsession ( addiction? ) IS REAL.
  3. CUTE MATCH HOLDER – Speaking of obsessions… candles needed to be added to the list. I couldn’t live without candles, and that is just the truth. Why not have a cute match holder displayed instead of unsightly lighters laying around, ya know?
  4. FLOWERS – Yes yes yes. Fake or fresh, flowers are a fabulous way to brighten up your home and your mood! Especially in the spring time.
  5. LIVING ROOM RUG – I dream of having a gorgeous grey and white rug like I have linked above, but I think may have to wait a little while. Our puppy, Teddy, is a little messy and loves to get himself dirty as can be. I would definitely cry if I splurged on my dream rug and something stained it.
  6. COFFEE TABLE TRAY – I am always searching though HomeGoods for the perfect coffee table tray. Anyone else? They are perfect for storing magazines, coffee table books, candles, coasters, you name it, but in an organized area, instead of just laying haphazardly around the coffee table.
  7. KATE SPADE SNAIL MAIL TRAY – I love this idea!! I knew I had to have this the second I saw it because Chris is constantly leaving his mail & receipts just kind of in random places around the kitchen and I think if they had a specific home he would be able to put them there, and I could avoid throwing away things we need ;).
  8.  STRING LIGHTS – I plan on spray painting the cord a pretty matte gold color and hanging these on the stunning rustic all wood headboard Chris made me for Valentine’s Day.
  9. OUTDOOR PATIO SET – I love eating outside when the weather is nice! I can just picture Chris, Teddy and I eating dinner out there this spring and summer and I can’t wait! Plus my kitty, Eloise, who loves to be outside watching the birds, will get great use out of these chairs as well.
  10.  COFFEE TABLE BOOKS – I’ve had my eyes on that Kate Spade coffee table book for a while and I think I’m going to pull the plug and order it already LOL. The Book Living With Pattern and Texture will not only look wonderful on the coffee table it will also provide me new  inspirations for decorating our home.
  11. SEE NUMBER 10.
  12. GREENERY – We love having greenery in our home. Having plants around purifies the air, keeps everything fresh and circulating and add a very relaxing touch to the space. Were going to have to stick with fake ones for now though because Teddy will literally eat anything sooo.
  13. PET TIPI – I mean this doesn’t really need an explanation either, right? IT’S THE CUTEST THING EVER. I know Teddy & Eloise will just cuddle their little hearts out in there and I can’t wait to take photos LOL.
  14. MARBLE VASE – I am loving this for on the mantle with some fresh peonies.
  15. KATE SPADE STORAGE BOXES – Not only are these so chic, they will be perfect for storing all my blogging props, out of sight, in a super organized way. They will fit perfectly on the bottom shelf of our bookshelf.
  16. FLOOR LAMP – Our apartment has awful natural light ( I literally want to cry about this every day not even kidding – natural light is IMPORTANT to me ) so we need as much extra lighting as we can get! Plus the gold brassy base color of this one is calling my name!

What are ya’ll lusting after in the home decor department this Spring??

Thanks for reading!

XO, Madison.

How To – DIY Clay Armpit Detox

Today on Bliss And Bubbly we are getting down and dirty. That’s right, we are discussing arm pits, toxic deodorants and the horrific side effects they can cause, how to avoid that, and an easy at home DIY that can totally transform your overall health and wellness. If you’ve been suffering from less than ideal BO, this could even cure you of that!

DIY BENTONITE CLAY ARMPIT MASK.

Remember how I talked about Bentonite Clay vacuuming the toxins out of your face when you use it as a face mask?? Well, it does the same thing for your armpits, but with much greater health benefits.

All you need is a tablespoon of Bentonite Clay, a tablespoon of Apple Cider Vinegar, a glass or ceramic bowl, and a stirring utensil that is not metal. Mix the ingredients into a paste, apply to the armpits, and let sit for 15 minutes. Rise it off in the shower using a wash cloth, and when you get out moisturize with some Organic Coconut Oil. Also, be sure to drink tons of water to really help out with the toxin ridding process!

armpit_detox

Doing a monthly armpit detox will:

  • Draw out the toxins currently built up in your body from traditional deodorants.
  • Will reduce body odor.
  • Improves tender lymph node function.
  • Boots lymphatic drainage & circulation.

Fun fact about me, I didn’t even wear deodorant until about a year ago. I just didn’t have the need for it! Then suddenly my hormones went crazy and I started to have BO. I knew that traditional deodorants worked really well, but were awful to put on your body, so I began my hunt for a natural deodorant that would still get the job done. I went through a few and was kind of losing hope until my boyfriends mom found the brand Schmidt’s!!  It’s natural, it’s non toxic, it’s made with essential oils and IT WORKS. My personal fave is Lavender & Sage, but they have other awesome essential oil combo’s to choose from as well.

If you aren’t sure about whether or not the deodorant you currently use is toxic or not these are the 5 ingredients you need to look for:

  1. Aluminum – linked to breast cancer in women, also an increased risk of Alzheimers Disease.
  2. Parabens – disrupt our very delicate hormonal balance, can lead to early puberty in younger kids/teens and and increased risk of hormonal cancers. Also linked to birth defects and organ toxicity.
  3. Propylene Glycol – can cause damage to the central nervous system, liver, and heart.
  4. Phthalates – linked to a higher risk of birth defects, also may disrupt hormone receptors which increases the likelihood of cell mutation.

So that’s a lot and that’s all extremely shitty if you ask me. I would personally MUCH RATHER be walking around with horrific BO than knowingly subject my body to any of that.

Our armpits are the location of the lymph nodes that work really hard to filter viruses, fight cancer cells, and rid our bodies of toxins. Sweat is like the public transportation system for all of those toxins and they need to be able to get off the bus! Those 5 toxic ingredients in traditional deodorants act as a suppressant, closing the pores off, causing a major build up. If a build up is occurring, your lymphatic is probably super stressed out.

The physical symptoms of a stressed lymphatic system are:

  • Chronic fatigue.
  • Swelling of the lymph nodes.
  • Muscle aches & pains.
  • Joint pain.
  • Getting sore throats/colds more often.
  • Frequent infections/viruses.
  • Arthritis.
  • Fibromyalgia.

If you’ve decided to make the switch to a natural deodorant, doing this armpit detox mask will really help ease the process. If you notice really bad BO, do a mask once a day for a few days in a row, and be sure to keep drinking tons of water.

Even if you’ve been using a natural deodorant for awhile, it’s still great to help your lymphatic system out and do this mask monthly, or every few months.

By the way, I am totally not trying to tell ya’ll that you HAVE to use natural deodorants or claiming to know more than you do about anything like that. If you want to keep on using your tried and true deodorant that’s not natural, you do you!

Also, you don’t have to use the kind I use, I just share what works for me. Do your own research and test out different brands and find what what works for you. There are so many amazing natural deodorants out there!

What are some other natural alternatives to everyday products the that ya’ll would want to see a post on?

Thanks for reading!

XO, Madison.

Weekly Chat – Instagram Aesthetic

intsagram_aesthetic

Ok soooo we all know how important Instagram is, or we’re learning at least. And until I started blogging a little over a year ago, I used Instagram for what a lot of people use it for – to document my life, my family, my friends, my food & drinks and of course my selfies. There was no rhyme or reason to anything I posted other than it was what I was doing/eating and that I wanted to post it. There was no “theme” or aesthetic, and honestly there still isn’t.

I am still trying to learn, and it’s a lotttt harder than I thought it would be. The “blogging world” is a whoollleee new world ( singing Aladdin out loud as I type this LOL ) and Instagram is a HUGE part of blogging. Readers want to see a deeper glimpse into your life, aside from what you share on your blog, and it’s also a wonderful platform for quick engagement as well. It’s a perfect tool to reach out to brands, or to have brands reach out to you, and really just give people a feel for who you are and what you’re all about. It’s the perfect place to give readers a behind the scenes look at what you’re doing.

At first, it seemed weird to me to not just post whatever I wanted, ya know? But I’ve learned that it’s important for your whole feed to have kind of a more uniform look to it, so that when people go to your Instagram page they are drawn in and want to look at each individual photo, not overwhelmed with a huge disarray of random things & colors.

No pressure, huh?

Well I’ve been doing a bit of Instagram research this week and I’ve compiled a list of 6 tippity tips on how to grow your Instagram and how to really hone in on your personal aesthetic.

  1. Ask Questions In Your Captions – If you are a blogger, brands want to see engagement on all platforms, Instagram being an important one. An easy way to do that is to ask a question at the end of your caption! If you’re traveling, ask for some good local spots to eat, or what are the must see’s for the area? And so on. And always be sure to respond to everyone! Really take the time to chit chat it up with someone! If they are taking the time out of their day to engage with you – engage back!
  2. Find “Your Thing” – What is it about your Instagram that will set you apart from the millions of other gorgeous accounts out there? Are you a food blogger that can post super quick and easy week night dinner recipes? Do you post super cute photos of your cat every morning? Are you knowledgeable in a topic and can provide a tip to give your audience value with every post? Find ONE thing to become “your thing” that is going to provide some sort of value to your followers and run with it. I am totally still trying to figure mine out….
  3. Be Consistent – Decide a schedule that works for you and stick to it. I post every morning, usually a photo from whatever blog post I posted that day, and then another one around 12:30.
  4. Hashtags – At first, I was not hashtags biggest fan. And I’m really still not, but they are a necessary evil in the world of blogging and Instagram. Being specific and tagging every single detail or brand that’s in your post helps others find you and that’s a major positive! I personally don’t type my hashtags in my caption, I type them in a separate comment, so that my followers don’t see them unless they click to read the comments. That way I’m not throwing ten million of them in their face at once, ya know?
  5. Follow Similar Accounts – This is another area where hashtags come in handy big time! If you are a fashion blogger, search the hashtag #fashionblogger and tons and tons of them will pop up. Follow them, and chances are, they’ll follow you back because you have similar content!
  6. Decide On A Color Scheme – This is what I am having a really hard time with, but I’ve learned that it’s really important. When someone clicks on your page and they see your whole feed at once, it should look beautiful and uniform while still being unique. But it shouldn’t look messy. Some bloggers have a marble background on every photo, some are against a wall, some at the beach, it all depends on where you live, what your photographing/blogging about and what makes sense for you.

Basically, I don’t know if anyone will really care about this advice because my Instagram is currently a hot mess, but I am by no means claiming to be an expert, so maybe it’s ok. In a way, I guess I am posting this to hold myself accountable to these tips and really follow through with them.

Also, I think having someone to either take photos of you, so all your pictures aren’t selfies ( not that there is anything wrong with a selfie! ) or to give you a second opinion on your photo is super helpful! My sweet boyfriend takes a lot of pictures of me and even follows some of the Instagram accounts I love so that he can really understand and see what I’m going for. I’ve sure got a winner! 🙂

What are some of ya’lls Instagram tips? I’d love to hear, and I’m positive other readers would too!

Thank you so  much for reading
🙂

XO, Madison.

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