My name is Sarah and I am a Chicago native, NYC resident, and Virgo. I was born on my exact due date (and only 1 in 20 people are). I have been in two countries at the same time...twice. I am related to Freddie Mercury. I once had a pet rooster. Definitely, fantastic.
Heidi Klum and Miranda Kerr aren’t kidding when they say healthy hair starts at the scalp. It’s really important to treat your scalp just as well as you do the dead protein growing out of it (your hair). Removing product build up from your scalp is one good way to keep the follicles clear so your hair can grow faster and stronger.
I have been using this Purify Shampoo by Pureology once a week for about five years now. All Pureology products are sulfate-free and safe for color treated hair. The only bad thing is they do have parabens :(. SO when I finally run out of my liters I’m going to look into making my own shampoos and conditioners. They foolishly list the main ingredients on their site!
Tea Tree Oil
It feels so good on your scalp, like pushing a reset button for your head. I start with the purify shampoo and focus on my scalp, only pulling through the ends, but not lingering on them. The hair feels tangly with the Purify so it’s hard to get the ends well. After I rinse I use my normal Hydrate shampoo and conditioner by Pureology. Make sure you use a normal shampoo after because your hair will not be very manageable after the Purify shampoo. You’ll notice that even though your normal shampoo might not normally suds much, it will foam up a LOT after using the Purify (I think it’s the baking soda).
There are many other deep scalp cleaning shampoos out there that will have similar effects, I’m just talking about my experience with Pureology. Once a week should be more than enough to get the deep cleansing effect!
RULE #5: Do not use sunscreen with a ton of chemicals (too many to list).
Oxybenzone and Octinoxate are very common ingredients and are not only harmful for you, but also for the ocean wildlife, fish, coral reefs etc. Many also contain parabens which we’ve already discussed and some even include vitamin A which is phototoxic (makes your skin more sensitive to the sun, thus burning it). But I’m not here to shit on store bought sunscreens, this is more a story of me using my first homemade sunscreen.
My recipe looked like: 1/4 cup coconut oil (natural SPF of 4-10) 1/4 cup shea butter (acts as a moisturizing base) 1/8 cup jojoba oil (natural SPF of 4-10) 2 tbsp. beeswax granules (makes it waterproof) 2 tbsp. zinc oxide powder (make sure it is ‘non-nano’ so that that particles cannot be absorbed by your skin, this is also supposedly optional but it’s highly suggested) 1 tsp. red raspberry seed oil (natural SPF of 28-50) 1 tsp. carrot seed oil (natural SPF of 38-40) 10 drops of Geranium essential oil (but you can use almost any kind EXCEPT citrus ones and bergamot which are phototoxic.)
Melt the coconut oil, beeswax, jojoba oil and shea butter together over low heat in a double boiler. Once it’s all melted, allow it to cool a bit and then mix in the zinc oxide while remembering to be careful not to breath it in and make a little dust as possible. Then let it cool further in the fridge and mix in the red raspberry seed oil, carrot seed oil and geranium oil.
The carrot seed oil takes over most of the scent, it is kind of earthy smelling, but the geranium helped too. The SPF will at least be 30-40. It will be a body butter texture and it has to be kept refrigerated. I know this all sounds like more of a pain than it’s worth…so here is my experience.
It is very thick and a little tough to rub in. The zinc oxide will leave a slightly white residue, but it’s not terrible. It’s about as greasy as any other lotion sunscreen. I was at the beach yesterday for less than three hours and for the first time this season I got a bit burned. :( But what I noticed is that I burned on my upper arms and upper back/shoulders only. Not my legs or my stomach or lower back. I know those areas are more exposed, but what I think might have happened is that I did not rub it in as well on my shoulders and back. I also probably could have reapplied once or twice but I felt like we weren’t there for very long. We also got fish tacos at Rockaway Taco after and had to stand in line in the sun, which burned my right side more than my left.
The water was beauuuutiful and I took a tiny dip right before we left to get tacos. The water droplets clustered on my body like a duck! Going in the water probably reduced the effectiveness though, so not sure about the beeswax really making it waterproof.
So in conclusion, next time I’m going to get a buddy to help me rub it in well on my back and I will reapply every hour or so, especially after going into the water. Lucky I had this stuff waiting for me when I got home (you can get it at Whole Foods), when I run out of it I’ll try to recreate the recipe. I also put some apple cider vinegar on the red areas and today it feels/looks a lot better.
Again, I did not get badly burned, but I used some BB cream with SPF 30 in it and my face was fine and did not need reapplying. I should also probably mention that this stuff might not work for your face, the shea butter will be way to thick and clogging for your pores. I’m still looking for a homemade face sunscreen recipe! The other two times I was at the beach this season I used store bought stuff with an SPF of 30 and I didn’t get burned, just a nice glow after being at the beach all day. I’m kind of disappointed but I think I just need to reapply more and see what happens next time.
Oh do I love me a good screen test. When watching this I forgot it was even a screen test until I realized there was no editing. It’s pretty much final cut quality. Little did Michael Clarke Duncan know he was going to win an Oscar for this role in The Green Mile. What a remarkable talent he was.
So it looks like I am not a Chekhov girl. I’m reading Three Sisters now and it is essentially The Seagull with new names (besides Masha). Just a bunch of people that are seemingly unrelated, walking in and out of rooms, pissing each other off or confessing their love to each other. Throw in a fire and you have Three Sisters. Do I need further investigation or am I understanding this correctly? Or am I just dumb or something?
STFU Paris Hilton is NOT wearing my old ass Forever 21 starfish dress rn. Honestly. Seriously. Paris, you have so much money, stop ripping off my budget babe style! This feels like payback for me ripping off her style that freshman year in college…
WARNING: a considerable amount of bitching ahead, non-blondes might not be amused.
Does anyone else order a chamomile tea when they ask if you want something to drink at the salon? I do, because I DESPISE going to get my hair done. When they trim it I feel like they cut off an arm and when they do color it ends up looking suspiciously close to my natural color…
All I want, is a golden, buttery, bright, natural looking blonde like the photos above. I know it’s possible to achieve because I see it on the streets everyday. I’ve actually started chatting up women on the subway with good blonde hair to ask where they get it done in the city. The response is usually, “Oh IDK the salon is like in SoHo.”
From my experience stylists think they can just take liberties with my hair. They hear me say what I want, they see the photos I bring in of what I want, but then they decide that with my hair texture and my complexion that anything but what I want would look better on me. No shit my natural ashy, mousy, dark blonde looks best with my skin complexion, it’s what I was born with! But I also know that I look good with a nice bright blonde like I had in high school when I worked at a hair salon (best days of my life). Stylists are also afraid to fry my fine hair, but if you’re already putting bleach on it you might as well give me the result I want. I treat my hair very well with weekly masks, good shampoo and conditioners, I slather it with coconut oil when I go to the beach, I wash it every other day at most, I air dry most of my head and I don’t use heat styling tools.
So on Sunday I went to get my hair colored and trimmed. I was very clear with the amount I wanted cut and she actually listened! Just a dusting to make it healthy, which worked since she remarked on how healthy my hair felt, no split ends etc. As for the color, of course to get the results above I’d need to either do balayage, or do a single process color with a few highlights on top, but what I came in for was bright blonde highlights to blend with the existing highlights I did late February. I wanted to look considerably blonder and now I do, but it is stripy and some pieces are pretty orange around my face. She told me to use some purple shampoo/conditioner to fix that, so I used the John Frieda cool blonde color gloss last night and it didn’t do much to cut through that brass. I’ve been meaning to pick up violet shampoo/conditioner anyway I guess… My hair does feel a little fried, but that is expected after bleaching. I didn’t wash it for three days and when I did last night I let it totally air dry, only put some leave-in conditioning UV spray. It’s feeling a little better this morning after some leave-in conditioning smoothing balm too.
I’m kind of at my wits end when it comes to hair color. Do I try balayage (it’s much more expensive), do I try a single process/highlight combo (upkeep is way more frequent and thus expensive), or do I give up and stick with my natural color? I have a friend who has a darker natural color than I do and she has this beautiful sunflower, Rapunzel, all-over blonde that she does herself at home. She buys the lightest blonde box color and just applies that, does root touch ups when it grows out and it looks wonderful. I’ve toyed with trying box color at home, but I don’t know how it will go on the highlights I already have. I might need to try the balayage next, but if that doesn’t work I might just go to the drug store and pick up some hair dye myself since the salon experience is anything but soothing and I feel like that’s what we are paying for most of the time.
There are also websites that will custom mix hair color and ship it to your home on a subscription basis, like eSalon or Madison Reed. I tried to find my color match on eSalon, and when I marked that I currently have highlights in my hair it gave me an error that they do not offer a highlight treatment. It wouldn’t let me continue with that information! Thats makes me worried about trying box color on my highlights now.
I’m going back in about 10 weeks for a partial highlight (since I bought two packages on lifebooker), so we’ll see how my hair evolves with washing and some TLC.
Arg what a great idea. Then again I have a full-time job and I print everything there. I just hope this gadget doesn’t end up costing $300 or that the cartridges end up being priced like unicorn blood.
But when I finally do break free from the office life and I have a fabulous self-sustaining, boss-free job, this would be great addition to my traveling office. In my private plane, in coffee shops, on the beach etc. No idea how I’m going to do that but…alas.
Having long, fine, fragile, color-treated hair means I don’t wash my hair every day. In fact it’s every other day, every three if I can swing it (usually only in the winter). So in between I use this dry shampoo by Alterna. It is a powder instead of the aerosol stuff that has alcohol which can dry out your hair. This costs $22 at Sephora, which is kind of expensive granted I could probably make my own (and will try when I run out of this bottle), but I’ve had this bottle for almost four years now and it doesn’t seem like it’s running out anytime soon. I remember I bought it before a two-week trip to Colombia and I asked the sales girl if one bottle would last two weeks, lol.
I just sprinkle some on my hands and pull it through by my roots. I let it set while I’m putting on my make up and then brush it through the ends to disperse it. It is white in color which blends really well with my blonde hair, but I think even on darker hair it wouldn’t be noticeable. There are dry shampoos for brunettes, but not by Alterna.
Not only does it absorb the oil, but it leaves my hair a little bouncier and it smells kind of citrusy. I find that this dry shampoo doesn’t really give much texture, so I have a spray version by Klorane if I want to do a little 60s half up-do or something like that. It definitely gives more grip for structured styles without making it sticky like hairspray.
First things first, deodorant only masks odors while antiperspirant uses aluminium based compounds to plug your sweat glands and block moisture. That already sounds kinda bad for you. Aluminium is known to be absorbed by your skin and cause estrogen like hormonal effects similar to what parabens do. We smear this right on our lymph nodes and dangerously close to our breasts, and some say our deodorant has been causing breast cancer and lymphedema. Again, I’m no doctor, I’m just paraphrasing what I’ve read on the internet and taking precautions because we have other choices when it comes to skincare and health!
So this weekend I made my own deodorant. The recipe is so simple and get this, it actually works. In fact I think my store bought stick deodorants were making me smell worse off than if I had skipped it all together. Plus I hate the scents available, they’re either powdery or smell like red wine (I’m looking at you Lady Speed Stick in Shower Fresh).
To fill this 7.75oz jar I used this recipe: 1/3 cup coconut oil (so great for your skin!) 1/4 cup baking soda (to absorb and mask odors) 1/4 cup arrowroot powder (a starch that absorbs and masks as well) 1/4 cup cornstarch (to add the antiperspirant effect) 10 drops of geranium essential oil (for scent and it’s anti-fungal/antibacterial properties)
Mix all the powders together first, add the coconut oil and mash it up well with a fork, then add the essential oil and mix some more. I added another tablespoon of coconut oil to make it a little more runny since I was trying to see if it would work in a little rollerball, but it was still too grainy and kept blocking it up. But this way works fine too! Just dab your finger in the jar and put in on your underarms like you would lotion. It feels slightly grainy from the starches and doesn’t separate very much, only a tiny but on the top as shown in the photo.
You can add any other essential oil you want, there is a good chart on this page that shows which essential oils are antibacterial. I chose geranium since it is very anti-fungal/antibacterial and won’t cause photosensitivity (some oils may irritate skin if you go out into the sun with them on). Most stick deodorants have alcohols in them that can also give you a rash or irritation when you go out in the sun with them on, woof. All the oil scents I really like (lime, bergamot) are photo-toxic so not great for topical usage unless you are a vampire and never go out in the sun. They’d be great for candles or reed diffusers though!
I also use the geranium oil in my face oils (which I haven’t quite figured out yet and will post about it once I do). It kind of smells like rose but a little more earthy, I really like it. My dad breeds geraniums, it’s one of his favorite flowering plants so we always had them all over the house.
But back to the deodorant, I was shocked at how well it worked. Granted I didn’t go to a dance class or for a bike ride, but it has been pretty steamy in New York this weekend. After all my running around I don’t notice any BO and I feel about as sweaty as I was with any other deodorant. It also doesn’t irritate my skin at all (even after shaving last night and getting laser hair removal treatment on my underarms).
If you absolutely cannot imagine a life without antiperspirant, please try to find one that has the lowest percentage of aluminium. I’ve found that Dove has the least out of all the popular brands (about 10% vs the average 15%), and also has 1/4 moisturizer in it so it’s less irritating after shaving etc. But give the homemade stuff a chance! The ingredients are not that hard to find, just a quick google search away!
My acting teacher John Wills Martin is always talking about approaching materials with innocence and ‘playing’ like a child. Kids just get it, their imaginations allow them to really believe what they are doing and saying in an imaginary situation. This ability goes away about the same time you start to become weary of things like roller coasters and skiing. “What if the harness flies open?” or “I wonder how fast Sonny Bono was going when…” etc. As adults we think too much about everything, what people think of us, how we look, how we sound, am I doing it right? I overthink and ruminate on things more than anyone really should, so every week with John is a chance to get out of my own way and become another character. It’s like how other people do drugs, but that’s much easier.
This clip is a beautiful example of a child diving into an imaginary world. Henry Thomas is not hallucinating, he’s just doing what feels right at the time. He’s given a summary of the situation, and once the reader starts talking to him, he’s there. But just as easily as he walked into it, he was able to back out of it too. No wonder Spielberg gives him the job on the spot.
Moral of the story is, try to act more like a child instead of like the adults we’ve all been told to become.
Reading this quick little gem on my iPhone Kindle app. You can actually read it in about an hour. Anything You Want by Derek Sivers is Derek’s tale of starting his own company called CD Baby. CD Baby is an independent music distribution website, created in a time when Best Buy ruled and only top artists were given distribution.
It’s a great peek into unconventional entrepreneurship where the ‘CEO’ actually tries to slow the growth of his business down. The lessons apply to any other kind of business, not just the music industry.
Does it make me any more confident to start my own business? No. But his philosophy is really intriguing and insightful. It’s also only about $5 for digital or physical copies!
I know I have said before that I typically fail at stealing celebrity outfits, but this is a rare example of one that I succeeded at. Both of these pieces are no longer available at Forever 21, but I’m sure they’ll bring that sweater back somehow.
The sweater might be a little lighter than Serena’s, but it still functions. Best part about the skirt is that it has pockets! I wear this combo all year round, it looks great with black tights (as Serena wore it).
Gossip Girl was one of my favorite tween shows (along with The O.C., though I watched the latter in it’s entirety very recently and I wish I could just keep watching it over and over). Gossip Girl was all about the fashion and I am still trying to be Serena van der Woodsen (minus the promiscuity and drugs).