Pro Tips | 5 minute face

I try to put in at least a little effort to get ready everyday even if it's a stay home with the kiddos schedule. Usually I can manage to change clothes + brush my teeth + curl or straighten my hair (unless it held over from the day before) + this 5 minute face. (I timed it!)

As a general rule, these 5 makeup steps will make the biggest difference for most women. If you try it out and feel like it doesn't quite work for you, shoot me a no makeup picture and we'll chat.

Update ~ Shaggy brows have been waxed and groomed after these pictures were taken.


Step 1 ~ Even out skin tone | 1 :30
Foundation in all formulas should give you an even palate to work with. Don't count on it to give you color, that's what blush and bronzer are for. For me this means tinted moisturizer/bb creme (Light) if we're staying around the house or loose powder mineral foundation (Porcelain).


Step 2 ~ Highlight your cheeks and cheekbones with bronzer or blush | 0:30
Some skin tones look most natural with a pinky blush while others need to go with a bronzer. Try both out to see what seems to match your natural flush. Usually I do a muted pink blush (Mimosa). If you're unsure, feel free to send me a pic!


Step 3 ~ BROWS | 0:30
Whether you wax, tweeze, sugar, tint, draw on, tattoo, or fill in, be sure that your natural brow shape is well defined. Eyebrows frame the face and definitely draw others' eyes to your own. Plus it gives you a great outline for where to put eye shadow when you want to do more. I use a clean, disposable mascara wand to brush them in the direction they grow, then a flat, angled brush with a cool, deep brown eye shadow (Brunette).


Step 4 ~ Mascara | 2 minutes
Next to eyebrows, mascara will do the most to help you look awake and refreshed. Fake it 'til you make it. Find a mascara you love and take the 2 minutes to do it right. My all time favorite for everyday is Blinc Amplified (Black).


Step 5 ~ Lips | 30 seconds
Lip gloss or lipstick will give instant warmth and color. The color you pick is of course up to you just be sure it compliments your skin tone. Pay attention to your natural lip color to determine if you need something super sheer or more pigmented. My go to is a mid-tone pink (Parfait) with no shimmer, just shine.

I'd love to see a photo of your 5 minute face! If you want to try any of the products I use, send me a note and we'll set up a time to play with colors that are right for you!

Pro Tip | Hard Water Woes

About 8 months ago my family moved to a city with hard water. Not deal breaker for us but a scenario I wasn't used to. I have thick hair and a ton of it so it doesn't take much to weight it down. I've noticed it gets dirty, faster. I'm not a hair DIYer so I want to be sure that when we spring for the good hair stuff, those products are doing all they can to get us our money's worth.

I did a little digging to learn more about what causes hard water and what it does to hair.
Soft water turns to hard water when it seeps into sediment layers in the ground, loosening minerals like Calcium, Magnesium and Iron. Those minerals then move along with the water eventually getting to the plumbing in our homes and depositing on our hair and skin. This build up makes it difficult to rinse shampoo completely out of hair and it can require more shampoo to clean in the first place. On the skin, it's also known to trigger eczema. It builds up on skin making it difficult for moisturizing ingredients to do their job.

After all that gloom and doom, I sought out stylist, Lacey Ward from The Parlor in Esquire Salon, for some tips and tricks to battling hard water on hair.

RMA | Will washing my hair in hard water affect any professional hair treatments I get?
LW | If you are have chemically treated hair, it is very important to tell your stylist about your hard water. They have to know what they are working with. The minerals in hard water can turn your hair brassy, orange if you let it. It is very harsh and requires constant attention. You can deal with it, but the next time you wash your hair, it comes back with a vengeance. You need to stay on top of it.

RMA | So what can I do about it? How do I treat it?
LW | As a stylist, I use a treatment called Malibu under the dryer to open the cuticle and pull all the deposits out. You can also try a special stripping shampoo like this one. If you have blonde locks, you can use a purple shampoo to counteract the brassiness. This is my favorite. There are home remedies that definitely work; however, if you have chemically-treated hair, use caution because these will pull out whatever chemical you put in (color, perm or treatment). Dawn dishwashing soap is the ultimate stripper of all things bad. You can mix lemon with it and do wonders for getting anything out of your hair.

You bet I will be trying a Dawn with lemon concoction in the near future along with Original Minerals Detox Shampoo. What have you tried? Hits or misses?

Pro Tip | Body Scrub

My calendar says 3 weeks til Spring! That means dresses without leggings are not far behind! If winter in your neck of the woods has done to your skin what Nebraska winter does to mine, you're ready for a full body peel!


Not in the budget? Well, I have a few pro tips to get you a bigger bang out of your body scrub.

A sugar scrub has a permanent place in my shower routine. My body lotion works better because it's not fighting through built up dead skin to do its job. Plus it keeps ingrown hairs away. Checkout Tuesday's post about why exfoliation is important if you missed it.

I do prefer sugar scrubs to salt scrubs for a few reasons.

Dual Exfoliation: Sugar is high in glycolic acid. Naturally occurring glycolic acid works to keep skin smooth without any visible flaking. It also helps skin hold onto it's own moisture levels. Physical scrub + natural acid exfoliation =  Salt absorbs moisture which leaves your skin dried out.

Sugar dissolves quickly on damp skin leaving behind oils that make a great shave medium. Scrubbing first lifts the hair up letting your razor get closer. Legs stay smoother longer.

What's your favorite tip for busting dry skin? Try out a scrub. Let me know what you think!

Primary, Secondary, Tertiary | The Best You

Choosing the right makeup colors...can be so intimidating. I found this video from the Robert Jones Beauty Academy. This is the best visual description I've seen for how to use the color wheel to understand how to make your natural beauty pop. People should see you, not your makeup. 

1:31 -- Explains cool and warm colors within the color wheel
2:51 -- Eye shadow techniques based on eye color using the make up color wheel
7:59 -- Robert Jones explains color theory to determine the right color of blush
12:34 -- Lipstick color theory using size of lips and skin tone

Hope this helps make makeup color theory less confusing. What new color are you going to try out?