beauty blogger

how i learned to embrace acne-prone, combination skin

seattle fashion blogger, thanksgiving, diary of this girl megan

disclosure: a special thank you to proactiv for providing the face wash, retinol cream, and lotion pictured in today’s post. as per usual, all opinions are my own! 

hello, and happy wednesday, everyone!

today, i want to talk about skincare and makeup—who doesn’t love makeup? #skincarefiend

as a teenager, i struggled with the occasional blemish. (they would typically manifest along my hair and jawline.) i also had combination skin—i.e. skin that is both dry and oily. i don’t recall feeling overly annoyed or upset about my skin’s appearance. my peers also suffered from breakouts, and i think this phase was simply the norm.

seattle beauty blogger, skincare routine, acne-prone skin

in my 20s, the breakouts prevailed, but again, i brushed them off—”it’s because i slept in my makeup” (something i never do anymore), “i ate too much sugar,” or “it’s hormonal.” i relied on drugstore products with high concentrations of salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide. i recall layering these topical treatments on skin, and the end result was dry, irritated patches. fun, right?

upon graduating, my mom recommended i visit a local dermatologist to help treat the underlying cause of my breakouts. i also hoped to gain clarity on what products are most beneficial for dry, oily, and breakout-prone skin. i had a positive interaction with my dermatologist, and she encouraged me to drink more water, utilize gentle skincare products (such as cerave), and take a daily, oral antibiotic to help minimize bacteria that is associated with acne.

i began to notice a change in my skin’s clarity. i no longer caked on my foundation and felt as though my skin could finally breathe! unfortunately, when taking the oral prescription, one caveat is that you must avoid sun exposure. my family and i went on a trip to hawaii, and while i stopped taking the antibiotics prior to our vacation, i hadn’t stopped soon enough—the result was a horrible breakout all over my face and neck. when arriving home, i consulted my dermatologist and opted to stop taking the antibiotic and instead focus on topical products.

seattle beauty blogger, skincare routine, acne-prone skin

fast-forward eight years, and the skin saga continues! blemishes continue to take a toll on my self-confidence, and i struggle to treat and cover them. i wash my face twice daily, use quality skincare products, and still battle stress-induced and hormonal breakouts.

over the past several months, i’ve modified my skincare routine and swapped out different products. while it’s not a perfect method, i enjoy caring for my skin. i think my change in attitude (i.e. wanting to love and care for my skin) has helped both my self-confidence and overall feelings toward my skin. in addition to reducing oil and targeting breakouts, i also strive to find beauty and makeup products that target signs of aging.

today, i’d like to share my skincare routine, as well as skin and makeup products i currently use.

morning skincare routine:

i prefer to shower in the morning, and while in the shower, i use my clarisonic cleansing brush and a creamy cleanser. i then pat my face dry and apply witch hazel toner with a cotton pad. lastly, i put on a matte face lotion with spf (to keep oil at bay).

evening skincare routine:

i first use a makeup-removing wipe. (i love these wipes—they’re great for sensitive skin.) i then use a cleansing balm, and it can be applied to wet or dry skin. (the balm removes any residual makeup but doesn’t strip my skin of natural oils and hydration.) i again apply the witch hazel toner and recently also implemented a hydration spray. i then massage my face with an anti-aging serum and night cream. lastly, i apply eye cream and drugstore acne medication to any blemishes.

thrice weekly, i also enjoy applying face masks. whether jar or sheet masks, i find this practice enhances my skin’s clarity and hydration levels immensely! it’s also a therapeutic, end-of-day routine.

seattle beauty blogger, skincare routine, acne-prone skin

shop my skincare favorites:


shop my makeup favorites (great for sensitive skin):


seattle beauty blogger, skincare routine, acne-prone skin

photos by sarah wolfe photography

a few other quick skincare tips? wear sunscreen and drink eight+ ounces of water daily. don’t sleep in your makeup. strive to eat well, as this can greatly support your skin’s health. lastly, care for and cherish your skin. our skin is our largest organ, and as such, it deserves a great deal of love!

do you have any skincare or makeup recommendations? if so, please send them my way!

my morning beauty routine with dove

disclosure: a special thank you to kroger and dime media for sponsoring this post. they graciously provided me some of the hair and beauty products below. as per usual, all opinions are my own.

cosmetic bag, haircare, beauty blogger, seattle beauty blogger

my morning routine:

5:05 :: alarm goes off

5:10 :: shower

5:20 :: towel dry body and hair; apply body and face lotion, deodorant, and perfume

5:30 :: locate clothes for work (ideally chosen the night prior—who can make outfit choices at this early hour?)

5:40 :: dry hair (one–two minutes)

5:45 :: leave home

6:40 :: arrive downtown (via bus); walk to work

6:45 :: hastily apply makeup; brush hair and spray into place with hairspray

7:00 :: sit down at desk; drink all the coffee

my dove products, dove haircare, hair routine

dove hairspray, dove haircare, beauty blogger, seatttle beauty blogger

my morning routine has two themes: ease and efficiency. with such an early wakeup, i have little desire to fuss with my hair and makeup; however, i still want to look feminine and polished. (many of the women in my office feel similarly.) i currently have eyelash extensions and therefore only wear foundation and blush. this greatly shortens my makeup application time! i wash my hair each morning, as i have fine hair that gets greasy quickly. dove’s dry shampoo keeps the grease away, while the hairspray keeps my flyaway hairs in check!

i began using dove products in early middle school. growing up, dove’s bar soap was a staple in our household, followed by the gentle (and softly scented) deodorant. i now utilize many other dove hair and body products. they’re nourishing and easily accessible (not to mention affordable, too).

hair routine, hair care, morning routine, beauty blogger

haircare, hair routine, my haircare, beauty blogger

another weekday time-saving tip? i set out my outfit for work the night before. while this may only save a few minutes, that’s a seemingly precious minute that could be spent sleeping or waiting in line for coffee. #amiright

while i tend to swap out most hair and makeup products, dove’s intensive repair shampoo and conditioner, as well as the dry shampoo and hairspray, have become beauty staples. i am grateful to have found products that enhance my weekday beauty regimen. with color-treated hair, i am always looking for products that help maintain my color in-between appointments, while also helping it look and feel healthy.

dove haircare, dove products, haircare, my hair routine

photos by karya schanilec photography

my five kroger beauty favorites: dove intensive repair conditioner,  dove extra hold hairspray, dove advanced care clear finish deodorant, makeup removing cleansing cloths, 100% cotton quilted strength rounds (used to apply facial toner)

to find a kroger location near you, or to learn about other beauty products sold in store, definitely pop over to their instagram, facebook, and/or twitter profiles.

the products i use are available at most qfc and fred meyer locations (where kroger products are sold). what are some of your favorite beauty products? are there any you can’t live without?




smashbox cosmetics ‘be photo ready’

seattle bloggers & friends!
join me next friday, september 23rd at the bellevue square nordstrom 
for an amazing event, hosted by smashbox cosmetics and local 
fashion and beauty blogger, brittany.
there will be makeup demonstrations by top smashbox artists.
learn current beauty and makeup trends from the pros 
(lip liner?! can you teach me how to apply this?), enjoy complimentary color 
matching, personal shopping, makeovers, and of course, cupcakes!
there will be a gift with purchase for everyone in attendance. 
additionally, purchases over $125 will receive a gift and complimentary 
headshots by local photographer and smashbox artist, elizabeth kathryn 
(who provides the makeup application and photos on this little blog!).
^^^ if only she could apply my makeup for me everyday!
above photos & makeup by elizabeth kathryn photography ^^^
you can rsvp here.

day to night beauty routine with bartell drugs

happy friday, everyone!
this week has gone by at a snail’s pace – 
perhaps it is because i am beyond ready for the holiday weekend?!
the toddlers are antsy, the teachers are exhausted, and there simply
isn’t enough coffee in the world to keep me moving. 
that may be slightly exaggerated, but weekend, i’m ready for you! 
i recently shared a daytime beauty look, featuring makeup
from my local bartell drugs, on my blog here.
today, i want to show you how adding a few products, also from bartell drugs,
can quickly and easily transform your look from day to night!
when i’m getting ready for work or busy with errands, and don’t necessarily
want a full face of makeup, i keep my routine simple:
these products are easy to apply, affordable, and all available at a bartell drugs
near you. if you’re going out for the evening, you can begin by adding shadow, eyeliner
and lashes. however, because my skin gets particularly oily
 throughout the day, i prefer to wash my face and reapply my foundation (perhaps
this is wasteful, or a waste of time, but i typically dislike the way my foundation 
looks after wearing it for the duration of the work day). 
whatever your preference with the foundation (reapply or simply add to your current 
makeup look), it’s now all about the subtle smoky eye for spring!
‘taking a look from day to night, or simple to smokey, can be as 
easy as adding a bold lip or dark shadow in the crease of your eyelid.
adding false lashes will give your eyes an extra pop! the standard is to not do 
both bold lips and bold eyes, but there’s nothing wrong with being extra
glamorous – just don’t use too much makeup. eyelashes frame your 
eyes, and brows frame your face; make sure both are on point.’
-makeup artist, elizabeth kathryn

begin creating your smokey eye by applying a lighter shadow (such as the nude
or pale lilac in this palette) to the base of your eye. apply the nude all the way
up to your brow. this will give your eyes a bit of natural/subtle color and can act as a base for 
the rest of your shadow. then, apply the darker color (such as a dark purple) in 
the crease of your eyelid. for this look, i also used the charcoal in the outside corner
of my eyes for a bit more color. this la colors palette is incredibly pigmented, so i 
didn’t feel like i had to layer on the eyeshadow. using a small, eyeliner brush, 
i also lined my bottom lash line with the lilac shadow. it is ever-so-slight, but opens up my eyes.
once i’ve applied my shadow, i then use my liquid eyeliner. i prefer a liquid,
brush-tip pencil, as it goes on more smoothly than a traditional pencil and is easier
for me than other liners, such as pots and brushes, etc. 
i certainly have my days when it comes to applying eyeliner – 
and q-tips are your best friend for removing unwanted (or overly done) liner. 
i kept my eyeliner fairly light because, of course, i had to apply
my favorite ardell false lashes!
people often ask me, ‘how do you apply your false eyelashes so well?’
lots and lots and lots of practice! i’ve worn false lashes for years, so i hardly
think twice when putting them on. a few tricks? 
1. when first starting out, play around with some of the 
more natural looking lashes. this will allow your eyes to adjust
 to the look and feel of falsies. 
2. cut them to fit the length and shape of your eye. i typically cut the 
inside corner (the shorter end) very slightly to better fit my eye.
3. use a dark adhesive that dries clear. if you accidentally use 
too much, it is less noticeable!
4. don’t apply the tube of glue directly to the lashes. instead, 
place a small amount of glue on the top of your hand. then, 
apply the glue to the lashes with a q-tip. i can’t tell you how many times i’ve had
 my glue explode and ruin a brand new pair of lashes 
(too many to count, sadly!!). i use this glue.
^^^ applying this lipstick in ‘mad love’ ^^^
after i’ve glued on my lashes (and let them set for 1-2 minutes), i apply 
one last coat of mascara. this will blend your natural lashes in with
the false pair you’re wearing. 
last, don’t forget your lips! i prep and prime my lips with chapstick, 
this lipstick primer, and finish by applying my color of choice.
today, i opted for a bright berry from the new la colors matte lipstick line.
in the tube, i wasn’t sure if the color would be too much with the smokey eye.
however, i love the way this lip color tied my makeup together!
and voila! you’ve changed your daytime look into a sultry, but subtle 
smokey eye that’s perfect for spring! 
finish by setting your makeup with makeup setting spray. i use 
what are some of your favorite makeup looks for spring?
let me know in the comments below!
**this is a sponsored post. all opinions are my own. 
a special thank you to bartell drugs for sponsoring this post
and providing me with a gift certificate to purchase the makeup featured here.
i love supporting local brands and am incredibly grateful
for the opportunity to support my local bartell drugs!

Copyright © 2018 · Theme by 17th Avenue