Sunday, March 16, 2014

My Advocare Experience.

My initial thoughts about AdvoCare:
Before AdvoCare (L) vs. recent picture
When the AdvoCare craze first hit my Facebook newsfeed I just kept scrolling. I was happy at my weight. I had clothes that fit. I was busy with a full-time job and going to school full-time. Fast forward a couple of months after being told by a few doctors that I had to lose weight. My blood pressure was too high and I even had to get my birth control changed because of my chance of blood clots due to my weight.

One of my sorority sisters, Katie, sold AdvoCare so I messaged her and told her I was interested. This was only after I read probably 50-60 blog posts about AdvoCare and specifically the 24 Day Challenge. After talking with Katie about it I decided it was time to do the 24 Day Challenge. After picking out all of my flavors, getting the meal plan and directions, and lots of support from Katie, I was ready to start!
The 24 Day Challenge:

Before I get to the actually challenge I would like to talk about one aspect of the program that held me back from my final decision--money. The 24 Day Challenge costs $190.25 plus S&H. Did that scare me? Yes. Would I pay it again? ABSOLUTELY. I would and I am. After completing the challenge and falling in love with the products I even signed up as a Distributor to sell products and get a 20% discount for myself!
Before the challenge started Katie provided me with a meal plan and direction guide that told me what I could eat, what I could not eat, and when I should eat and take the products. I printed it off and kept it in my purse at all times. You are eating almost 100% clean during the challenge. So no processed, fried, or bad foods. No alcohol. No sodas. They even recommend no bread. Did I stick with it 100%? No. I let a wedding sway my decisions for two days. However, I don't regret it. Celebrating a best friend's wedding was worth it. BUT I can't wait to stick with my next challenge 100%.
So....could I of lost weight by myself? Hmmm, maybe. However, spending that money, having a step-by-step instruction guide that laid out how to use the products and what to eat, as well as having a strong support system held me accountable and gave me the push to lose more than I ever thought was possible.
My First 24 Day Challenge:

I started my challenge on October 23, 2013 and finished it on November 15, 2013.

I received the following products for the 24 Day Challenge:
  • Herbal Cleanse
  • OmegaPlex
  • Spark Energy Drink Mix
  • Metabolic Nutrition System
  • Meal Replacement Shake mixes
I also purchased Catalyst as an add-on item after Katie's recommendation.

The challenge is divided into two parts. Part 1 is the Cleanse Phase (Days 1-10). The cleanse helps you get rid of toxins in your body so you can absorb the nutrients you need to be healthy and shed the pounds. Please do not let the word "cleanse" scare you. My stomach is very, very sensitive and reacts to things very quickly. I was so nervous that I would be running to the bathroom during work or school. This never happened. Not to be gross but my bathroom habits became more regular thanks to the cleanse.

The actual Herbal Cleanse includes probiotic pills, a fiber drink, and herbal cleanse tablets.

Part 2 is the Max Phase (Days 11-24). During this time you drink the Meal Replacement Shakes for breakfast and take Metabolic Nutrition System pills.
My Thoughts After the Challenge:

Was it hard? At times, yes. Especially when I was eating my chicken and broccoli in my office and my students were eating Chick-Fil-A or Moe's.

Did I lose any weight? YES!!!

Here were my starting and finishing weights-- 227.8 vs. 218.8. Nine pounds gone. Even better? 15.25 inches gone!

Of course if you don't continue eating good and working out you will gain the weight back. That's what happened to me. I let myself go a bit during Thanksgiving and Christmas (I gained back 6 of those pounds) but started again on January 1st. I continued to use my favorite Advocare products and used my 24 Challenge meal plan to start over. Since January 1st I have lost 18 pounds and another 13 inches.

So let's get the negatives out of the way---
What I didn't like about the Challenge:
  • Pills--I hate taking pills. Some of the pills are HUGE. Katie gave me great advice and told me to tilt my head forward when taking pills. It actually works.
  • Food portions--It was tough for me to finish all my food. I wasn't used to eating such large portions of clean food. At times I had to make myself chew.
What I got out of the Challenge other than lost pounds and inches:
  • Stomach problems were gone! My stomach never hurt or bothered me. Now whenever I eat something heavy or really processed I have to go the bathroom immediately.
  • A love for water! During the Challenge it is recommended to drink a gallon of water a day. I now have to have water at all times. My skin is clearer and I never get headaches.
What's Next?
I'm beginning my second challenge on Monday, March 24! My best friend and I are hosting a fun Challenge competition for all of those who compete. If you are interested in our competition or just AdvoCare in general please email me at
I'd love to talk about my experience and answer any questions.
Also, I will be blogging about my 24 day experience. Soon I will also be writing a post about my favorite AdvoCare products and how I use them.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

A life update: school, jobs, weight-loss, etc.

I haven't posted anything in months. I'm alive. I still love makeup.
BUT I am one busy girl.
This semester marks my LAST semester of grad school. If I pass all of my classes I will be walking across the stage on May 3, 2014 with a fake diploma in hand. Exactly a week later I'll be turning 25 and running a 4 mile race.
Running? Excuse me? Yep. One of my goals for 2014 is to finally be healthy and shed all those pounds that have been holding me back from living a healthy life. So far I'm 18 pounds down! I've completed one 5K race, am running another one next Saturday, then a four mile race in May. I have been doing a couple of things to lose and keep the weight off:
  • Working out daily. I make sure I move in some way whether it's at the gym or walking Munch around our neighborhood.
  • Eating clean 70/30 perfect of the time. Yes, I slip up. Yes, I go out to eat. However, my food preferences are changing.
  • Keeping myself accountable by posting pictures and updates on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook.
  • Taking new trusty Advocare products and trying new Advocare products. My next post will be all about Advocare!
As for work I am currently working as a teacher's assistant at a local middle school three days a week, graduate assistant at UTC, and virtual assistant for two bloggers.
Add in being a wife, fur baby mama, friend, and sorority advisor....well my time is limited. However, I am going to try and start blogging at least once a week from now on.
How is everyone?

Friday, December 20, 2013

Hearts and Darts December 20, 2013

I haven't published a blog post since JULY (insert horror face emoji here). Looks like I need to up my blog game. I'll start with my hearts and darts of the week.


  • Flavored sparking water: I picked up a sparking water in strawberry lemonade at Target last night. YUM. It's probably not the best thing to drink but it tricks me into thinking I'm drinking a coke and it's delicious.
  • My sister living with us: My little sister is currently staying with us over winter break. She's became the workout partner I've desperately needed.
  • Flannel and plaid shirts: I am OBSESSED with men's flannel and plaid shirts. I pair them with black leggings and riding boots. I'll throw in a scarf if I want to do something different.
  • Flat tires: I got my second flat tire in less than a month the other night. I'm bringing it in today and crossing my fingers that they can fix it instead of me having to purchase another tire.
  • Christmas: I am not in the Christmas spirit this year. I have no idea why either. We didn't even put up a tree this year. And it's warm. And I haven't purchased any presents. Just call me Scrooge.

Monday, July 8, 2013

Back-To-School Prize Stash Sweepstakes (GIVEAWAY!) Week 1

I'm very excited to share with you a sweepstakes I helped create for my company, Top Flight paper. Top Flight produces and manufactures paper products like school supplies and office supplies. Top Flight is hosting a two month sweepstakes that will randomly choose one winner each week to win a $25 gift card and collection of school supplies. You can enter once a week to enter to win each week's prizes. Each entry will automatically put you in the winning for the grand prize-- $100 gift card and a large variety of Top Flight products.

Here is this week's prizes plus a $25 gift card:

The giveaway is open to residents of the 50 United States. All you have to do is head over to Top Flight's Facebook page or here for mobile users and click on the Back-To-School sweepstakes tab. Enter your submission form and that's it!

Each week will accept entries between Monday
at 12:00 am EST-Sunday 11:59 pm EST.

**The giveaway is hosted by Top Flight, Inc., not Facebook.

Friday, July 5, 2013

Incognito Bachelorette Party

This past weekend one of my sorority pledge class sisters had her bachelorette party in Nashville. I headed there Friday night to stay with three of my best friends at one of their childhood homes. It's been quite a while since we were all together so I was ecstatic to see them all! 

We started the night with dinner and the best margaritas I have ever had at Rosepepper. Seriously, if you are ever in Nashville you have to stop by. I'm not a huge marg drinker but I could have downed at least 2 pitchers. Thankfully that didn't happen.

We then headed to a marina bar in Hendersonville for another drink before heading home. While we were at the bar I sneaked a picture of a girl in the bathroom with no shoes. No wonder people think we are all rednecks and barefoot....

The next day we woke up to a home cooked breakfast from Melissa's parents (so sweet and so yummy), went shopping, and were completely lazy until we had to start getting ready for the actual bachelorette celebrations.

I ended up wearing a brand new dress Ashley got at Target and Maybelline's Vivid Colors lipstick in Vivid Rose. That stuff is BRIGHT and will not budge. I'm in love. There will be a blog post soon with lots of photos and swatches.

Now on to the bachelorette festivities....we started with dinner and drinks and a lingerie shower for Brooke at a restaurant in Green Hills. I'm pretty positive everyone in the restaurant got a show with some of the gifts she received.

When then put on our masks, which were part of the Incognito theme, and headed downtown for lots of drink, dancing, celebrating, and embarrassing photos and videos that will never be shared on social media or the internet. 

I had an amazing time catching up with sorority sisters and friends that I never get to see anymore. I had an even better time going out with all the crazy girls. Seriously though, 25+ girls in Nashville, Tennessee is a funny, chaotic sight.

The best part of the weekend--I get to see them all again in two weeks for Brooke's wedding!

Now on to the Rated G photos that I can share....

Sue and me

Ashley and Sue
Ashley and me

Melissa, Ashley, and Sue with the cookie cake Melissa's parents bought us:)

I LOVE this lipstick.
The crew before dinner.
Ashley and me at dinner.
The bride to be with her cat toy Ashley and I bought her....long story....
Sue, Melissa, and me at Honky Tonk.
My favorite photo of the night! Like how I am magically wearing a necklace I wasn't wearing before...perks of being with sorority sisters. Thanks, Liz!
Everyone at dinner!

Monday, July 1, 2013

Battle of the Cleansing Waters

I've never used the cult classic Bioderma but have always been intrigued by cleansing waters/toners. I am currently on the last bottle of my holy grail makeup remover--Clean & Clear Makeup Dissolving Foaming Cleanser. I know I can purchase it from Canadian online drugstores or Amazon for a jacked up price, but I am on the hunt for something that lives up to what it does. Two pumps of this magical water into foam product will remove every stitch of makeup on my face, including all my eye makeup. I've been able to find random bottles at close-out stores but the luck has run out. That's why I decided to look into cleansing waters. I currently own three different cleansing waters/toners and would one day like to try Bioderma. 

I want a cleansing water to be able to remove all my makeup including mascara. I also would use it for a gentle toner after washing my face in the shower or in the morning before I put on my makeup.

I put the following cleansing waters to the the test after a day of wearing sunscreen, heavy duty makeup, and Benefit's They're Real Mascara which is a pain in the ass to remove.

No7 Beautiful Skin Cleansing Water for Normal/Oily Skin: You can purchase this at Target in the U.S. I am currently using a sample size I received at a college trade show. It retails for $8.49 for 6.76 oz. This cleansing water removed all my makeup and didn't leave my skin feeling tight but it felt as though the moisture had been stripped. I didn't even try to remove my eye makeup with it because the water is heavily scented to smell like roses. I don't like when face products are heavily scented because I'm always worried it will break my face out. I would not purchase a full-size of this, but I do think it does a good job of gently removing makeup.

Boots Expert Sensitive Gentle Refreshing Toner: Ingrid, AKA MissGlamorazzi, instagrammed a picture of this stuff and said it was a dupe for Bioderma. Since I've never tried Bioderma I can't compare, but I really like this. It is $4.19 for a 6.7 oz. bottle and can be purchased at Target in the U.S. There is no detectable scent and it removes everything including the They're Real Mascara. The key it to soak a cotton square with the toner and hold it to the lashes for about 10 seconds before gently swiping across the eye. Again, my face felt very "neutral" after using this. It wasn't moisturized but it didn't feel tight either. My only complaint--the large opening of the bottle. If the bottle fell off my sink or vanity the toner would go everywhere. However, for such an inexpensive price I wouldn't mind that much. I would definitely repurchase this.

Koh Gen Do Cleansing Spa Water: This was a splurge for me. You can purchase this "spa water" at Sephora or I have the 3.38 oz. which put me back $13.00 or you can purchase the 10.15 oz. bottle for $39.00. The scary thing about it? I think it's worth it! It removes every inch of makeup and mascara and leaves my face feeling smooth and lightly moisturized. My face feels so clean and my acne tends to clear up faster if I use it a couple days in a row. However, I use it sparingly because I doubt I will repurchase since it's so pricey. 

I think the obvious winner for me is the Boots Expert Sensitive Gentle Refreshing Toner. It doesn't leave my face feeling as moisturized as the Koh Gen Do Cleansing Spa Water does, but it does cost a fraction of the price.

Do you use a cleansing water or gentle toner on your face? I would love to hear your suggestions about different ones I can purchase in the US!

Monday, June 24, 2013

I like big brows and I cannot lie.

I admit it...I judge people when it comes to their eyebrows. I don't care if you are a man or woman, I still do it. It drives me NUTS when my husband lets his brows grow into unibrow territory. It drives me even nuttier when women pluck pluck pluck until they have no brows at all or the brow shape resembles a tadpole.

Filled in, well groomed brows make your face look put together even if you aren't wearing any other makeup. Taking a few extra minutes a day to work on them makes you look awake and alert. 

I used to think filling in my eyebrows was a science I would never learn.  After much trial and error I have found four products that work for me. 

My brows are pretty sparse at the innermost corners so I concentrate most of my brow product there. I also wear glasses with large Ray Ban frames every day, so my brows look better when they are filled in pretty heavily. I like to use products that can be applied quickly and still look great even when applied a bit messy.

I start and end my brow routine the same every time. I first brush through my brows with my Sonia Kashuk spoolie. I then apply the brow product I decide to reach for that day. Then I run the spoolie through my brows one more time.

My favorite brow products from least expensive to most expensive:

NYC Brow/Eye Liner Pencil in Taupe (.99): This pencil is perfect for busy mornings or when I want a very natural brow look. I simply use short strokes to fill in any sparse areas and am done. The pencil is soft enough to glide on my brows but stiff enough that it doesn't smudge. The color is very neutral when I swatch it on my hand and when applied over my brow hair but leaves a red tint on my skin were the hairs are sparse.

ELF Studio Eyebrow Kit in Medium ($3.00): I only use the dark gel part of this gel/powder duo because it's pigmented enough to hide any sparse areas and the consistency mimics a brush-on brow gel. The color is completely neutral which I really like. However, the brow powder in the duo leans a bit red on my skin just like the taupe pencil.

MAKE UP FOR EVER Aqua Brow in #15 Blonde ($20): This product is a waterproof gel that refuses to budge until you remove it with a makeup remover or cleanser. I dispense a very small dot on the back of my hand and use a stiff angled liner brush to apply to my brows. The shade is very neutral on my brows and is a bit darker than the WnW pencil and ELF kit. I love using this because it gives the end of my brows a very natural look--not like they are drawn on. I can't see myself running out of this anytime soon either.

Too Faced Natural Eye Palette ($36): This palette is perfect for traveling because not only do you have nine eyeshadows to choose from but there are also two cool matte shadows that can double as brow powders. I like to mix Velvet Revolver and Sexpresso together before applying the powders with a stiff angled liner brush. These colors combined are darker than any of the other brow products I use. Even though they are darker they still look pretty natural after running the spoolie through them.

For today's daily laugh--

What are your favorite brow products?