beauty

How I Finally Got Rid Of Dark Under Eye Circles


Confession: I am a side sleeper. I know this because every time I wake up there’s a little wet spot on my pillow from my own saliva and when I splurge on eyelash extensions, one side comes way faster than the other. I tell myself, this is fine because I sleep on a silk pillowcase, but it is something I’d like to work toward changing.  While my dedication to fierce lashes has its limitations, skin care is something I am a more rigid about. For this reason, I figured putting a hydrating, luxury skincare product on my face at night should prevent me from burring one side of my face into a pillow. It did… mostly, but more on that later.

^Each of the unedited photos above was taken one month apart. The first one is after no treatment. The second was one day after microneedling and the third was after using Dr. Brandt’s mask, antioxidents and microneedling and jade rolling at home + wearing makeup which includes a light concealer. 

Diet, stress, aging, antibiotics, and even harsh beauty products can strip away beneficial microorganisms, upsetting your complexion’s perfectly balanced ecosystem. All that puts you on the fast track to breakouts (see my chin), blemishes, dry patches and crepey skin. With the Biotic Balancing Complex, Dr. Brandt Skincare developed a technology that supports the skin’s natural bioshield (that’s a real word), optimizing skin health. Their Recovery Sleeping Mask is powered by Biotic Balancing Complex that works to strengthen the skin’s ecosystem by balancing naturally occurring flora on the skin’s surface while fortifying the skin barrier.

I slept with it for a week hoping it would do all that it promises and magically turn me into a back sleeper. On night one, I had 2 glasses of wine at dinner and buried my face into my pillow per usual. I blame the wine. By the second (and decidedly soberer) night, I slept on my side, but with my face up to the ceiling. when I woke up, there was no drool on my pillow and the mask seemed to be mostly equally distributed so I am assuming I slept like that the whole night (despite sleeping with a toddler… winning!) By the fourth morning, I could notice a difference. Success! My skin was much more hydrated, the crepey undereye skin I have was much less pronounced. I smiled big so my crows feet would appear. It’s not something I like doing in the mirror, but it’s an excellent way to test the effectiveness of skincare products. Crepey skin and crows feet were less pronounced.


I still had bad dark circles. That’s something I’ve noticed since childhood. I had heard that microneedling can help with undereye bags and thinning skin or crepey skin so despite fearing needles, I let a doctorrepeatedly puncture my skin with tiny needles. It was amazing, but since that time-consuming treatment is not sustainable for me, I added microneedling to my at-home routine. This article talks about it at length and I can only add that I strongly recommend it. If you can, do it both at your physician’s office and follow up with at-home treatments because the results you get with your doctor are much faster and then numb you so it actually is less painful than doing it on yourself.

If like me, one of your resolutions was to hit the gym more often, it’s time to get serious about antioxidants. Why? Exercise creates free-radicals which cause cell damage due to oxidative stress. That sounds scary, but simply taking supplements with antioxidants will prevent cellular damage while strengthening your body’s defenses. I added Dr. Brandt’s Antioxidant Water Booster supplement to my water 1x/daily. It has green tea in it which has been proven to significantly interfere with the glycation process while stimulating collagen creation. I was not drinking green tea regularly before because I don’t like the taste, but the supplement doesn’t taste like green tea in the least and it’s 100% natural. For the record, it tastes ever-so-faintly like the Mio drops my MIL uses.

 


The last thing I owe my newly replenished skin to is jade rolling. I use this roller in the morning after applying my CE Ferulic Acid and it feel so good to have a little face massage and has reduced my under eye circles noticeably. P.S. I have heard this is a decent alternative to CE Ferulic Acid if you don’t want to spring for it. I highly recommend CE Ferulic Acid because I’ve seen what it can do for skin and one bottle truly lasts all year for me, but I do cringe a little at the price despite knowing first hand that it is so worth it and it is 20% off right now. 🙂 Dr Brandt Sleep Mask

lifestyle

Avoiding Traffic in LA (with SuperMOPI!)

Mom Blog Los Angeles
No joke, I do whatever I can to walk in LA. Luckily (and intentionally) we live in an area that affords us the ability to walk to grocery stores, restaurants, shops, swim lessons, etc. So many times Kaare and I settle in to our small couch after the kids go to bed in their shared room and one of us asks, ‘shooooould we move to a different area where we might be able to afford more space?’ and then we think about commuting in Los Angeles and we’re like, HELL no, you can wheel our dead bodies out of this cute little house with a high walk-score!mopi bike kids
Because I walk everywhere, my kids walk everywhere. How? They complain a little. They get used to it though. I think ultimately, it strengthens our relationship. At age 4, Harlowe would walk a mile with me home from preschool. Since I was on maternity leave, I walked everywhere trying to soothe Gunnar and lose the baby weight. I walked with Gunnar in the stroller and Harlowe and I had some of our best chats on those walks. One day she asked me if I knew there was a drum in my ear. It was hilariously cute. mopi bike for kids
As Gunnar began to walk, he no longer tolerated his stroller. I had to get creative. I got a ride-on car (which he loves) but now that he’s 2.5 he needs to burn more energy so we got this SuperMOPI and it’s been broadly appreciated by every one of us. It’s easy to balance on — he rides a balance bike so I wasn’t worried about that. It’s a lot more stable than a balance bike and a lot slower so it’s great for walks. The bike is really better for fun times in a contained, traffic-free area. I’m fond of the fact that this motorcycle, as he calls it, is absurdly light so I can easily carry it when necessary. You know you’re always ending up carrying these things, mamas!

^Such a happy guy!

^Bad ass coming through.

*This Bike was provided by superMOPI, but this post was not required. Thank you for reading and supporting Bethanimalprint..and less traffic in LA! 🙂

beauty

My Favorite Non-Toxic Makeup For A Natural Valentine’s Day Look


You’ve heard me talk a lot about my efforts to transition to a (mostly) non-toxic beauty routine. The green beauty scene here in LA is legit and I’m always coming across something new to try. As a work-from-home-mom, it’s not every day I get my glam on… or wear jeans for that matter, but when I do, I want the products to be just as safe as they are effective. If you missed it, I shared my everyday makeup routine a few months back. Today, I’ve got a Valentine’s Day inspired makeup look that is super-natural and easy to apply. It’s really a great look for any day, but was clearly inspired by V-Day! I linked all the products in the description of the video. Please give it a thumbs up if you like and don’t forget to subscribe! xx

lifestyle

Flipping Out


Whoa! It’s February 1st. How did that happen? With February upon us, I wanted to share a really cool gift idea I recently came across. Your kids will flip out over it. If the kiddo in your life doesn’t have a reversible sequin somethin’ yet, you need to change that this Valentine’s Day. I like the idea of a pillow because they don’t take up a lot of space and it is something they will use, see and appreciate every day.  If you’re in the market for something more functional, Harlowe also has this backpack in pink/silver and it’s a hit with all of her friends!

In case you were wondering, I haven’t given up my resolution to not shop for a year, that’s still going GREAT, but doesn’t include gifts. I can still buy and receive gifts and fortunately, (here comes the disclosure) I did receive this pillow from my friends a Mermaid Pillow Company.

More things to flip out over

Happy Valentine’s Day!

lifestyle

#BethannInTheKitchen [Baking with the Kids!]


I can say with anecdotal certainty (you know, the most scientific kind) the question I get most often is about my diet. I’ve been gluten-free for 10 years now. Before that, I was vegan. Being gluten-free due to sensitivity is now so second-nature I don’t even think about it, but it used to be really tough. I once cried at breakfast in front of my husband (then boyfriend) and his best friend because I was so sad that the only think on the menu for me was eggwhites and ‘seasonal fruit.’ Now, I eat pizza, pasta and bread on the reg. Not the same kind as my husband, but when he has my gluten-free pizza, he doesn’t even notice. We eat organic as much as possible, even brownies. I drink a lot of fruit and vegetable smoothies and so do the kids. I love sharing all of this with you, so I am starting a hashtag- #bethanninthekitchen to showcase some of the things I make with the kids!

What you’ll see a lot of:
favorite taco joints in LA
my morning smoothies
organic stuff (I’m fancy like that)
easy-to-make recipes

What you won’t see a lot of:
red meat. (I don’t eat things with cute eyes.)
things that are difficult to make


These brownies from Foodstirs are super-easy and fun to make. Harlowe and Gunnar both helped, and it was such a fun way to connect with them. I like baking with their mixes because a.) Mixes are easy, yo. b.) They use sustainable, fair trade ingredients, chemical-free colors and heirloom flour (so it is gluten, but very high quality)! Highly recommend. *This post is NOT sponsored, I just love them and their mission.

Let me know if there’s anything specific you want to see on #BethannInTheKitchen and if you end up making these, use the hashtag so I can see! As always, thanks for reading!

lifestyle

Why I’m Giving Up Shopping For A Year

how I quit shopping for a year
Like most, I spent the last few days of December thinking about what I could do to be a little better in 2018. I workout regularly, try to get enough sleep, and eat a mostly-healthy diet (save for the bag of chips and salsa I consume every other day).  And while I know giving up chips and salsa might help me get those ninja turtle abs I’m working toward, I think a life without chips and salsa is not a life worth living.

So I wondered:  What could I resolve to do better in 2018?  Or, maybe I can remove something that I do mindlessly every day with little benefit.  What’s a habit that I enjoy, but doesn’t enhance my life and sometimes actually stresses me the F out?  Shopping. Retail therapy is a legit thing and my health insurance doesn’t cover it.

I adore shopping; the adrenaline rush, the multiple tabs, wish lists, shopping carts filled with all my material hopes and dreams are part of the allure.  Could I really quit shopping for a year?!  No new clothes, bags, shoes or makeup?  Nilch? When I told this to my husband, he laughed and said, ‘that’s like me saying I’m going to give up oxygen for a year!’ Tough love.  I told my closest friends, and one who recently shaved her head leaving her down-the-back curls on the floor said she didn’t know which was the more extreme, her new haircut or my proclamation. Needless to say, shopping is a big part of my identity and typically constitutes a large chunk of my day-to-day.not shopping for a year
I always justified shopping as just being part of who I am, but toward the end of last year, I started thinking about how much time I spend shopping though and realized that it was a lot. Mindlessly scrolling through emails or Instagram where a lot of the people I follow link their covetable outfits could add up to an hour or more spent shopping each day. An hour I’ll never get back that I could have been reading to the kids or working out with my husband… or you know, ANYTHING else. 
But, I love clothes and I love fashion. I studied fashion merchandising in college because I wanted to dedicate my life to fashion. That hasn’t changed. How will I stop shopping for a year? I think it will be very difficult for me, but to put in to perspective (for myself) I have lost both my parents and this will be nothing compared to that. I’m very fortunate to have a pretty good base for clothes, makeup, bags and shoes. I really don’t NEED anything else. Not shopping doesn’t mean I have to give up fashion it just means I will make better use of what I have. I realize there is a huge difference between not being able to shop and choosing not to shop. I’ve been unable to shop before (for financial reasons during and right after college) so surely, I can choose to do it now. 

The best part is its only been a week and I’m already experiencing the benefits like…

I’m less stressed. Normally, I might spend a few hours contemplating what to wear and buy knowing I have a bachelorette party/event/bridal shower/<insert any event/excuse to shop here> to attend in a few weeks. Embracing the fact that I just have my small closet to shop is liberating. I get fewer emails because I’ve unsubscribed from company emails that might tempt me; fewer emails in my inbox has reduced stress. I don’t feel that ‘I wish I had that’ twinge when I look at my instagram feed and see a great bag or shoes that are outside of my budget. Instead I feel, ‘I’ve chosen not to buy that’ which is so much better. 🙂

I’ve got more time.  I’m not completely sure how much time I spent daily or weekly perusing the latest/greatest looks, but I am sure it was considerable.  I’m having a blast trying new things instead (played tennis for the first time last week and had dinner last night with friends and sampled chicken gizzards).

Saving money.  Obvi.

 

lifestyle

How to Whiten Sensitive Teeth at Home


Note: read all the way to the end for an exclusive giveaway!

I’m the type of gal who can really get behind the notion of ‘coffee till cocktails’. I start each morning out with a latte thanks to Kaare who has kindly made it his mission to perfect his at-home barista skills complete with latte art (swoon!), sometimes I have an iced-latte in the afternoon and I end each day with a glass of red wine. While I do try not to beat myself up about my diet; liquid or otherwise, drinking all those acids and pigments do not help my teeth stay white.

Over the years I began to notice dark liquids taking a toll on my teeth so I started using Smile Brilliant to brighten up my smile again. Initially, I was a bit nervous because my teeth are very sensitive, like I can’t even use popular white strips without some pain, but their team ensured me their desensitizing gel would help so I decided to give it a shot.

Each kit is completely customized to your needs and yes, even your mouth so before you start, you have to take impressions of your teeth like you would if you were getting a night guard or retainer. I have both so this wasn’t new to me and luckily, I got it right the first time! If you are new to taking impressions, don’t fear, it’s fairly self-explanatory and they give you extra molding gel in case you need to do your impressions more than once.

A few weeks after you send in your impressions you will get your custom fitted trays in the mail and start using your whitening gel. The first time I used it, I did have a little sensitivity so I switched to a sensitive toothpaste and stuck to a schedule of whitening every other day for 30-40 min each session. I alternated whitening with sensitivity gel which helped ease any discomfort immensely. It took me a little over a month to get through the whitening gel and I’ve got to say, I’m pretty pleased with the results, but more than that delighted in the convenience and experience of using Smile Brilliant. No trips to the dentist, a super-helpful team to help make you comfortable and get the results you want and it was pretty quick!  

Now the fun part… I’m doing a giveaway for one Smile Brilliant customizable kit! Enter using this link for the chance to win $139 credit! It’s open to USA, UK, Canada, and Australia residents and is open for two weeks. Best of luck, you animals! Also, if you want to purchase one of your own or as a gift, get $15  off tray code: bethanimalprint15 – you won’t regret it!



fashion, lifestyle

Mommy and Me NYE Outfits & 2017 Ramblings

house of harlow 1960 x revolve dress

Reflecting back on 2017, there is SO much that happened. The world/ the US seems like a completely different place with a new President. From DC to Hollywood, just about every man in power is likely a sex monster. Looking at the bright side as I try to do; females are standing up for themselves now more than ever and making radical changes because of it.  Go us! We’ve been shaken as a country and if you asked me last November, I’d say we’ve never been so separated, but lately, it feels like we’ve begun to bond together in support of gender and social equality. Something we arguably we’re further along with last year IMO, but there is a silver lining, I am sure of it. With so much instability comes the opportunity to discover new strength and stability. While that proves to be incredibly difficult Nationally/Internationally; personally, I’ve been like a ‘real millennial’ this year and really focused on myself ;). Here’s a few of my personal highlights and learnings which I share because some might be helpful if you’re thinking of making big changes in 2018!

LA fashion and lifestyle blog
I left my cozy corporate job at the #1 company to work for. There’s many reasons Why I left my job at Google (read more there!) but it has been a wonderful and scary decision for me even now, almost one year later!

Being at home more means, preparing more meals! No more free Google good prepared by chefs. Here’s Simple Smoothies For the Whole Family that I’ve been making for breakfasts or on-the-go snacks! Trying to get healthy meals without a lot of time is always a challenge for me, but smoothies make that a breeze.

I also don’t wear business casual clothes anymore! I finally picked up the most amazing jeans and am obsessed with the fit and styling. If you are looking for jeans in the new year, I couldn’t recommend them more! I wish I got them sooner and saved so much money buying fancy designer jeans. I mean, I love designer jeans, but these are JUST as good!

We’ve lived in small spaces (less than 1,000 sq ft) for 7 years now, but this year we moved to a smaller place than we had last year and with 2 kids it got a little tricky. Here are 7 tips for living in a small space that I find really useful and they make our life in LA that much more enjoyable. I honestly would not trade this tiny house for a big suburban house right now because I love LA / big city life and seeing my family around every corner, but it is certainly not always easy being in a small place.

Our favorite kid’s books change often because they really do grow up so fast. What we’re loving this year is books that help teach kindness and empathy. It’s been our real focus in 2017.

Finally, I shared 5 tips I wish I knew before becoming a work-from-home mom. That was such a huge, life-changing thing that I am so grateful I got to do, but it was/is challenging change for me and for us as a  family. I wish I had a mentor going into it, but I didn’t know a soul that worked from home. My friends are either working moms or stay-at-home moms. Going into the ‘gray area’ alone was crazy hard and I learned a lot from it. I think next year will be so much better because I have learnings to implement and better expectations about what I can accomplish personally and professionally without going crazy.

striped metallic dress mommy and me outfits family lifestyle blog LA bethann wagner

I hope you all have an amazing 2018 and thank you so much for reading and following along with me in 2017. It means so much to me.

lifestyle

Simple Smoothies For the Whole Family

smoothies for kids
With the New Year comes the opportunity for a healthy reset and of course, green smoothies are on the menu. Disclosure: green smoothies are the only way I can get both kids to consistently consume green vegetables. For that, and pure convenience, we rely on them heavily.  Throughout the year, I do stick to a mostly healthy diet and have a few go-to meals that I can always create in a pinch. For breakfasts, smoothies are my jam because we can take them with me to school drop-off or the gym and there isn’t a lot to clean up thanks to my beloved Vitamix which I reluctantly pulled the trigger on years ago after seeing that it practically cleans itself. No regrets. Here’s 3 smoothie recipes my family really enjoys. You definitely don’t need to make everyone their own smoothies each morning (I usually don’t), but everyone has a favorite that we rotate through.

 

smoothies kids will drink smoothies for mom and kids

Kid’s favorite:
1 cup spinach
1 cup coconut water
1/2 cup frozen mango
1/2 cup frozen pineapple
1 banana

My favorite:
1 cup spinach
1 cup coconut water
1/2 cup frozen mango
1 orange
1/4 cup lemon juice
1 t fresh ginger
1 T hemp seeds

KW’s favorite:
2 T almond butter
1/4 c blueberries
1 banana
Trader Joe’s Chocolate Hemp Protein
1 c almond milk

For all of them, I just blend all ingredients together until smooth — throw everything in at the same time. You can alternate fresh fruit for frozen or vice versa depending on what you have.

 

fashion

10 Jumpsuits For Every Body Type

holiday jumpsuit

Hi friends! I wore the jumpsuit above in a recent post and raved about how comfortable it is and how it would be perfect for any body type, even nursing mothers and then… it sold out. Hate when that happens! Couldn’t leave you hanging, so I scoured the internet to find 10 jumpsuits that would be perfect for your next holiday party! There’s one for everyone including this red one that makes your legs look a mile long. If you are a nursing mom, this jumpsuit might be your best bet from a conveniece standpoint. This silver jumpsuit would look marvelopus on you if your emall chested like me. This sequin one is a classic one could wear for years to come. Shop all 10 jumpsuits below! xoxo