January 2017 | Most Loved

Can you believe the first month of 2017 is just about over? I feel like it was just Christmas. This year is going to be extra special for me. It’s my wedding year! Just before the holidays I also moved into my first home. One of my goals this year is to be more efficient with my time and that includes making time to blog. I want to blog about skincare, beauty, wedding planning and home decor. I hope this is the year I stick to it. You can now follow me on Instagram too @themissalyss 

Here are my most loved products of the month!

Jack Black Dry Erase Ultra-Calming Face Cream

I purchased this Jack Black moisturizer as part a gift set for my fiance. He has dry skin and could careless about skincare, but I always try to help him out. He has nice even-toned, clear skin and I’ve made it my mission to keep it that way forever 😉 . We recently move into our first home together. It’s my first time other than college having to share a bathroom! Around the holidays I picked up this moisturizer from his drawer noticing it had some familiar ingredients. I was intrigued because I knew it had good reviews, great organic ingredients and it was created by women! Since I had some extra time off from work I figured it would be a good time to give it a try. I am so happy I did! I have been using this face cream every night since the end of December. This product definitely lives up to its name. It’s super hydrating and calms any redness I may have. When I wake up in the morning my skin looks super hydrated and refreshed.

Mac Eye Kohl – Teddy 

During the Nordstrom end of year sale I decided to purchase this Mac eye liner at the recommendation of one of my favorite YouTubers, LoveShelbey. It’s a really pretty coppery brown color. The texture is creamy, but stiff enough that you can apply without making a mess.

Maybelline  FIT ME Concealer

I have been extremely surprised by this concealer. Throughout 2016 I was a huge fan of the Urban Decay Naked Concealer (Light Neutral). I probably purchased 3 or 4 tubes because it gave great coverage without being greasy or cakey. In December I ran out of my Urban Decay concealer, but knew my mom would probably put some in my stocking. When I was at Target I opted for the Maybelline FIT ME Concealer (10 Light). Total shot in the dark! I have been using this concealer every day for almost two months! I am no makeup expert, but I would for sure say the Maybelline concealer is a dupe for the Urban Decay Naked concealer. The coverage is great and it doesn’t cream or cake up. My mom did get my a tube of Urban Decay for Christmas and I have found myself reaching for the Maybelline concealer first.

Eucerin Advanced Repair Hand Lotion

My hands have gotten super, super dry this winter. With all of the extra cleaning that came along with moving into a new house my hands were awful! The dryness even contributed some problems with my engagement ring fitting. I got this hand lotion as a Christmas stocking stuffer and have used it every day since! It helps keep my hands soft, smooth and crack-free.

OPI Hello Kitty “Let’s Be Friends”

Love this pinky-white shade by OPI, unfortunately I think it is discontinued! I decided to get this color because another favorite YouTuber of mine, Alex Garza, mentioned it in one of her Vlogmas videos. I would have to agree with her statement, she definitely knows how to pick a good color! I was happy my local salon had it. It’s definitely going to be one of my regular colors and may even be in the running for my wedding day color!

Godmother Bracelet

My sweet Goddaughter (and future flower girl) gave me this special bracelet for Christmas! This bangle fits in perfect with the Alex and Ani style bracelets. The quality of the bracelet is great. It’s made by Georgie Designs and my favorite part is that you can send it back to them to be resized, just pay for shipping. They include resizing instructions in the box. I think this makes their bracelets a great gift because bangles aren’t one size fits all. 

xo 

Miss Alyss 

December 2016 | Favorites

Derma-e Cleanser

After watching one of Alex Garza’s (huge fan of hers!) reviews of her favorite glycolic acid cleanser, I decided I needed to try one out as well. Derma-e is a drug store brand that can be found at Ulta. The first time I went to buy this one it was sold out. Luckily, the next time I went to get it there was one left and it had a coupon on it! It’s a very affordable cleanser, which I love. I have been using this cleanser every morning and it makes my face so soft. Glycolic acid promotes skin turnover which is helpful for both acne and wrinkles.

Derma-e Scrub

I received a sample a sample of this Derma-e scrub in a recent Birch Box. It has a beautiful lemon scent and really exfoliates my skin! I have been using it once a week on my face, neck and chest in the shower. My skin feels so soft after using it! I will definitely consider buying a full size tub once I run out of my current scrub.

Cashmere Snow Flake Lotion
Last year I was all about BBW Vanilla Bean Noel, but this year there is a new scent in town! I have had this lotion for almost two months and I am obsessed with this scent! Cashmere Snowflake is one of BBW 2016 holiday scents, but I think I’m going to wear it all year-round. It is light, fresh and a bit sweet; not over powering at all. I get compliments whenever I am wearing it. Unforunatley, this scent seems to be sold out! Hopefully you will be able to find it at your local BBW.

Michael Todd Blue Green Algae Toner

Another purchase based on Alex Garza’s videos. I had been looking for a toner to add to my current skincare routine, but wasn’t sure where to start. A lot of toners I have tried were drying and/or irritating. What I like about this toner is that it is gentle on my skin, affordable and doesn’t have a strong smell. I have definitely noticed a difference in my skin since I’ve been using it (about 2 months). My skin is soft, clear and pretty well hydrated for this time of year. This toner has hydrolic acid in it which helps your skin retain moisture.

Kate Spade Card Holder (linked similar)
I am currently obsessed with my Kate Spade card holder. It holds 3 cards which for me is my ID and credit cards. It also has a small pocket for a little bit of cash. I love using this because it is so light weight and fits my essentials. It’s perfect for shopping or errands because I can put it right in my pocket and leave my purse at home. I purchased mine at the Kate Spade Tanger Outlet for less than $20 during a pre-Black Friday sale.

Kate Spade Bracelet (linked similar)
Another pre-Black Friday find at Tanger Outlers was this beautiful Kate Spade cuff bracelet. I love the pearls and rhinestone combo. This bracelt is so classic and goes with everything!

Essie Nail Polish | Sand Tropez

This polish is the perfect grey-biege. Always one of my go-to colors. It’s pictured below with my favorite Kate Spade bracelet mentioned above.

My Favorite Uses for Coconut Oil

You know the father in the move My Big Fat Greek Wedding? and his obsession with Windex? Well, that’s me with coconut oil. It’s my answer to everything. Need a moisturizer? Coconut oil. Got a squeaky door? Coconut oil. Scared of canola oil? Coconut oil. This stuff is the wonder product; no home should be without it!

I only buy organic, extra virgin coconut oil. If it’s going on my face and in my food it needs to be good quality. An esthetician at the dermatologist’s office also told me that coconut oil (not extra virgin) is thick and could clog the eye lash follicles.  I have purchased my coconut oil from Amazon and Costco. My favorite way to store coconut oil is in small, transportable containers. I keep a jar in my bathroom, my nightstand, my purse and my desk. You can get perfect travel sized containers at Target (I couldn’t find the actual set of Target travel jars that I have. The item in the link includes 3 jars and 3 travel bottles). I am also a big fan of re-purposing glass jars for beauty storage. Here are my favorite uses for coconut oil.

Eye Makeup Remover

My #1 use for coconut oil is for eye makeup remover. It has been my go-to for well over a year. I have extremely sensitive eyes and had trouble finding a product that was gentle, but still removed my makeup.  Even products by Clinique and Neutrogena that are marketed for sensitive eyes made my eyes burn. After I wash my face and loosen up my makeup, I use a Q-Tip with coconut oil to remove my eye makeup. I am careful not to put my fingers in this jar and only use a Q-Tip to keep bacterial out.  Another added benefit for using coconut oil as eye makeup remove is that it’s great for your lashes! About a year ago I lost some lashes due to eye irritation. I started rubbing coconut oil along my lash line and they grew back.

Chapped Nose Healer

Notbing like a post-cold chapped nose. Coconut oil is perfect for protecting your nose when you’re using extra tissues during cold and flu season. Rub a little on the tip of your nose a few times throughout the day or before bed. It will keep your nose moisturized and prevent chapping. I have also found that dabbing coconut oil around my nostrils before bed helps to keep my sinuses moist at night – a huge problem for me in the winter.

Hand-Foot-Nail-Cuticle Moisturizer

Winter weather is so harsh on your hands. My hands get super dry and my nails even get a bit rigid. I try to massage coconut oil into my cuticles and nails before going to bed. It also works great for dry feet. Oil up your feet then put socks on to lock in the moisture.

Hair Treatment

Coconut oil is a great treatment for dry hair! You can make a DIY mask (dozens on Pinterest) or smooth a little on your ends. I have attempted to use coconut oil in a hair mask once.  Let’s just say it didn’t work out well. I thankfully have very healthy hair, so the coconut oil was much too heavy for me. Instead of using it as a hair mask I smooth a little over my ends as a post-blow dry cream.

Cooking/Baking Oil

Coconut oil is a great substitute for butter, cooking spray and other oils when cooking. I like to use it to grease my pan when making scrambled eggs. It also works great for greasing baking tins or mugs for microwave mug cakes.

Oil Replacement in Baking

I love incorporating coconut oil into baking (and smoothies) whenever possible. Coconut oil has a bunch of great health benefits. It’s becoming so much more common to see recipes using coconut oil in place of vegetable oil. Check out my Gain-Free Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies that uses coconut oil. I love being able to give baking recipes a new spin by substituting not so healthy ingredients for healthy ones ingredients.

Do you have a favorite use for coconut oil? Share them in the comments below!

xo Miss Alyss