Something I’m wearing to allll the holiday parties coming up? A confident, white smile. 😁 Hey y’all! This is my first giveaway of the season, and I am so excited to share it with you! If you have been following along for a couple of months, you know that I have been testing a new teeth whitening system. As promised, I’m sharing the results with you all, and also giving away a FREE kit ($150 value) to one of you reading. (Details at the end of my post.)
I’ll start by telling you a bit about my teeth whitening history. Because I’m a frequent coffee, tea, and wine drinker, my teeth definitely experience staining as a result. I have used crest white strips, whitening toothpaste, professional whitening (after Invisalign), and while some gave me decent results, they all made my teeth so sensitive. Therefore, teeth sensitivity was a primary concern when I started the teeth whitening system from Smile Brilliant. I was so happy to learn about the desensitizing gel that comes with your teeth whitening kit from Smile Brilliant. You simply put on the desensitizing gel after your whitening session, and it soothes any sensitivity you may have encountered from the whitening gel. Something that I have found is that whitening before bed is the best for sensitivity because it allows your teeth to go untouched from food/drink for several hours. Also, if you know you are more sensitive, start off with a shorter whitening session. Just my bit of advice!
Something really awesome about this kit is that you don’t need a dentist appointment to begin! You don’t even have to leave your house. You make your own impressions right at home from the supplies that Smile Brilliant sends over. It is perfect for those of you who are so busy and always on the go!
I was very impressed with how much whiter my teeth were just after a few uses! My mom and my husband even noticed that my teeth were whiter after a couple sessions. I’m so happy to have a whiter smile going into the new year, and all of the events leading up! I am beyond happy with the results. Check out my before and after below: You can see that just the slightest surface staining I had is completely gone!
Enter to win your own teeth whitening kit (desensitizing gel included) by clicking on the giveaway link below and entering in your email! You can also get 15 % off with code OLIVIACCGREEN15 ♥️
I can’t believe it is already December first as I’m writing this! I am so excited to share this with y’all, as I have had so much fun putting it together. Last year, I remember thinking I was going to make some great gift guides for this year! All year long, I have kept an open note on my phone and computer to add to this list. I hope that this helps you with your shopping this year. I know that it can be stressful to find the perfect item for everyone on your list. I appreciate you using my links–I make a very small commission from these retailers, and it helps my small business grow!
IT Cosmetics Brush Set: I actually received this same set a few years ago for Christmas, and I love them SO much! They feel so luxurious and soft on your skin, and hold up nicely. I also love that it comes with a cute quilted travel case!
MVMT Galla Watch: A wonderful quality watch that goes with everything! I wear mine almost every day! Comes in multiple colors (I have my eye on the black one for this year 😉 ).
Chanel Chance Perfume: This perfume smells soooo lovely. It is perfect for everyday. Sophisticated and not too heavy. I got a sample from this from Nordstrom, and it will for sure be my next perfume purchase.
Ugg Slippers: I have these in tan and black. Best slippers ever! I’ve had mine at least 5 years, and they are still looking great.
Slip Pillow Case: I treated myself to this last year for Christmas, and I don’t even travel without it now! There are so many benefits to sleeping on a silk pillowcase. Perfect gift for any lady in your life! (comes in multiple colors.)
Dyson Hair Dryer: I know, I know. This is insanely expensive. I received this as a gift 3 years ago, and it is the best dang hair dryer I have ever used. It cuts your drying time down, lessens the amount of frizz, and is much less damaging to your hair. I loveeee mine.
Travel Mirror: I couldn’t find my exact travel mirror that I have personally, but this one has great reviews! Perfect for someone who travels a lot, or simply someone who wants a smaller mirror for detailed makeup everyday. It has built in lights so you can do your makeup anywhere!
Metal Crossbody: I wasn’t going to include a purse on my gift guide, but this one is so unique and has become one of my favorite pieces this year. It adds some edge to any outfit. I’ll link the gold version here as well!
Chunky Hoops: We had these at Pink Magnolia a while back, and I missed out on buying them. They are so classic, yet trendy at the same time. Perfect every day hoop for any lady!
Monogram Wine Glasses: These are such a great gift for any hostess or wine lover in your life! I love the shape of them, and personalized gifts are always so special!
Polaroid Camera: I think this is such a fun gift for someone who is an “in the moment” type of person. We had one of these cameras at our wedding, and we loved the special memories that it created.
Computer Side Table: I wanted to include this item because it is something that I use almost every day, in fact, I’m using it right now as I type out this blog post. It is so perfect for someone who works on their computer a lot at home. You can easily move it around the house, and sit anywhere with your computer! It also looks very stylish in whatever room you put it in!
Faux Fur Blanket: One of the best purchases Jordan and I made after we got married. This blanked is the best quality and makes your bedroom/living room look so luxurious and cozy. It is heavy and very soft–We like to keep it at the foot of our bed.
EyeShadow Palette–I use this eyeshadow palette every single day. I even used it on my wedding day! Great quality, and very versatile palette for any gal.
Central Perk Coffee Mug: So cute for the F.R.I.E.N.D.S. lover in your life, I’ve had my eye on this one. (hint hint Jordan).
iPhone Charger Organizer: This is a great idea for your tech girl who has an Apple Watch and air pods! You can charge all of your things in one place in an organized fashion.
Cozy Plaid Scarf: This is such a great quality scarf! So soft (80% cashmere). I have the cranberry colored one, and it comes in so many other color options!
Ear Huggie Earrings: I just ordered these! Very inexpensive, and highly rated on Amazon. Thanks, Dani Austin for sharing about these!
I have had the same hair dresser for over 10 years in Cary!! She is so awesome and knows my hair so well now.She is the only person I trust to cut and color my hair! If you are local and want her info, just leave me a message on Instagram.
How often do you get your hair colored/cut?
This varies depending on my schedule.Usually, I go every 6-7 weeks, but sometimes I’ll only go 5 weeks. (It just depends on how long you’re happy going without freshening up! We definitely do not do my full head of hair every time—Just a partial every other time.I also get my hair trimmed every time I get it done! It is so much more manageable that way.(I am OCD about split ends.)
Do you wear extensions, and have you ever?
Nope! I get this question all the time.I have never gotten hair extensions put in. I have looked into youtube videos of other girls who have, and it just doesn’t seem like something that I’d like, plus it does cause a bit of breakage.My hair is also pretty thick and time consuming to style at times as it is.
Is your hair naturally blonde? How do you achieve the hair color/tone that you have?
My hair is naturally darker blonde! It continues to get a bit darker as I get older.It was much lighter when I was younger.Ashley highlights and lowlights my whole head.We try to keep it as natural-looking as possible.The lowlight she mixes up for me is usually a super cool tone mixed with another lowlight that has some warmth in it.It’ll be different with each person depending on the natural tone and darkness/lightness of your natural hair! Ever other time, Ashley puts a slight toner on my hair mixed with a glaze (makes my hair more ash, plus nourishes it and gives it added shine). Other times, she will put a hair glaze on without toner in it. I also use this purple shampoo about once a week to maintain my tone in between appointments.
How often do you wash your hair?
Every 3-4 days.My hair is pretty thick and has more of a coarse/dry texture. However, you can train your hair to go longer in between washes even if you have fine hair!
What tool do you use to curl your hair?
I have usedthis basic curling iron all through college, and I still use it.I took the clamp off with a screw driver several years ago, and voila! DIY hair wand.
Do you take hair vitamins?
I don’t! I have been looking into taking Nutrafol hair vitamins that Dani Austin and Olivia Rink have written about recently. However, they are pretty pricey and I’m not sure if they are worth it!
Products that help grow your hair longer and prevent breakage??
I swear by this product by Redken. I have used this product longer than any other hair product I own.There is no telling how many I have purchased over and over.So great to improve the strength of your hair!A more recent item that I love is this hair brush. It is so gentle, and gets out allll of my tangles wet or dry. I also love to use this while blow drying my hair!
Extra Hair Tips:
If you wash your hair every day, try to start going longer without washing it. Washing and styling more than you need to just increases the amount of mechanical and heat damage done to your hair. I used to hate doing this with working out/sweating ect.Something that really helps me is blow drying my hair on a cool setting after working out and spraying dry shampoo. Also, figure out hairstyles that work well with your second/third/fourth day hair.I really love watching this girl’s youtube channel for tips: Twist Me Pretty // Abby Smith
Let your hair air dry as much as possible. I usually wash my hair at night so I can sit and let it air dry to about 90% before a blow dry it.
Find a hair style you like that doesn’t require any heat, so you can give your hair a break sometimes.
Try to lessen the amount of hair spray you use—it builds up on your hair over time and causes breakage.Instead, I use this texture spray on my curls.
Be SUPER gentle with your hair when it’s wet.This is when it is most fragile.Blot your hair with a towel instead of rubbing, and use a gentle hair brush.
Sleep on a silk pillow case!!! I cannot recommend this enough. I love mine so so much. It is gentle on your hair and skin, as some fabrics can “rough up” your hair.
If there are any questions I didn’t answer, feel free to leave me a comment below or on my Instagram! Happy Sunday, y’all. 🙂
In today’s blog post, I’m linking my favvvvorite items that are ALWAYS in my beach bag! I will also go ahead and link my suit / outfit here 👇🏼 (I am so impressed by the quality of these bottoms btw. I will for sure be ordering more! Linking the matching top as well. )
If you know me and have been following along, you know that several of these products I have talked about before! I will not go into detail about each item, but I will say that I cannot go to the beach without them!
Let me know something that you do not go to the beach without on my last instagram post! Talk to y’all soon. ♥️
Free People Basic Tanks: I have always been a basics kinda girl when it comes to buying new clothes. I love to fill my closet with neutral easy pieces that I can dress up or down, and wear with different types of accessories. These Free People tanks have become a favorite of mine this year. (I usually buy new tanks from Target each Summer and I still swear by them, however, these new tanks may take their place). They are so light weight and great quality.
Starbs Passion Tea and Egg Bites: I don’t know what took me so long to order this tea. It is SO good and refreshing. It does not need sugar, so I order it without. I’ll take a venti please 🙋🏼♀️. Also, the egg white egg bites are delicious and healthy. When I don’t have time in the middle of the day for lunch, I grab them with my tea and they hold me over for a while! Definitely worth trying! (And perhaps they are keto-friendly for my keto folks out there?)
Albums I’ve had on repeat:
Dove Body Polish: I picked this up before heading to the beach this past weekend because I like to use an exfoliator in the shower to remove excess sunscreen, and y’all, I think this is my fav body exfoliator I’ve ever used! I really hope that they do not discontinue this product. I specifically got the macadamia and rice milk scent, and it smells amazing. The texture in my opinion is perfect. (Not super rough, but also gritty enough to remove sunscreen, excess self-tan, dry skin, etc. )
Hair Scarves and Head Bands: I wear my hair up a lot in the Summer, so hair accessories that dress up a ponytail or second day hair are definitely a go-to for me rececntly. And, they go great with basic pieces. 🙂 Both of these are from @Pink_Magnolia_Boutique !
Zuchini / Squash Recipes: Okay, this one is a bit random. I guess all of these have been pretty random lol. We have a garden that Jordan and my brother, Dale, have worked so hard on, and one thing we have had an abundance of is zucchini and yellow squash! We have been cooking it different ways every single night for dinner. 🤣 I’ll link some recipes that we have tried and loved below.
Recently, I’ve seen women sharing accounts they follow simply as an appreciation to that person’s content, and I love that! I love following certain people who I can truly see that they love and enjoy what they do. I decided to share about 3 different YouTubers that I have followed for years and trust their opinions on products. Their recommendations have certainly brought value to me. Read about some of my very favorite items and brands I have discovered based off of their YouTube channels below. I’ll link all of their channels at the end of the post. 🙂
This girl is so different from other beauty Youtubers. Her looks are always realistic and natural (looks that any woman at any age can wear on the daily). She provides videos with makeup tips and tutorials, and they are never too complicated. Personally, my favorite videos of hers are her powder foundation tips and tricks! Some products that I continuously purchase because of her are the Bare Minerals Complexion Rescue, and Ardell Demi Wispy lashes (I wore these on my wedding day and regularly for Pink Magnolia shoots).
I follow Naomi mainly for her tips on styling work and casual outfits. She keeps outfits chic and classy, and she also tells you where to find everything from basics to accessories. Some of my favorite videos of hers are her tips to looking put together and where to find closet basics like camis, blazers, dress pants, and jeans!
Such a sweet and glamorous lady! I have purchased countless items based off of her recommendations. Also, she introduced me to Lulu’s and Miranda Frye, which I have purchased several items from over the years now. If you read my self tanning blog, then you already know about the Tan Luxe drops that I use–I can thank Stephanie for sharing these on her channel a couple years ago! Also, the Tarte eyeshadow palette that I have used everyday for the past 2 years was a wonderful recommendation from her. 🙂
Let me know of someone that you truly love to follow and brings you value! I would love to check them out!
Here are the YouTube channels for the ladies listed above if you’d like to check them out!
Hey y’all! I’m excited to be writing this post in collaboration with Pink Magnolia! You can find my post on their website along with other guest bloggers in the future. As many of you know, I have been the model for their website for the past year participating in weekly photoshoots. We have had so much fun since the beginning, and we continue to learn more and more after each shoot.
One thing that has been constantly part of my routine the past year is self tanning (I’ve tried several different types of products!). After trial and error, I have found a couple of products that I really love and are pretty easy to use too. I thought that some of you would appreciate me sharing my tips and tricks as the weather heats up, and we are ready to bust out our Spring wardrobes! I always feel more confident with a little extra color before diving into Spring styles.
I’ll start by talking about the type of tanner I use, which is tanning drops! As opposed to tanning mousse, gradual lotions, sprays, etc, tanning drops allow for a more custom color that lasts over a week and fades nicely! These drops also last me a lot longer than purchasing other kinds of self tanners, and no need to purchase a mitt along with it.
How to use:
I use the Tan Luxe tanning drops and Clarins face drops with my favorite everyday lotion. I simply mix a few drops in with my moisturizer for each section of my body. The more drops you use, obviously the deeper your tan will be. You can also build color over several days if you aren’t comfortable going in with so many drops the first time. That’s why I really love this style of tanning. You can make it work for you whether you want to be bronzed or just slightly sun-kissed. The best part of this product is that it does not smell. I put it on right after I shower, and I’m good to go. There’s no need to rinse it off. (If applying directly with your hands, be sure to wash your palms thoroughly–This is how I apply it). You can apply it before bed or the beginning of your day and go about your business. It slowly develops after several hours just like a spray tan would.
Exfoliate and shave just like you would before any other type of tanner. Add and emollient lotion to areas like knees, elbows, ankles to prevent dark patches before going in with the moisturizer/drop mixture.
Start with less the first time you use it to figure out your perfect amount, and to allow some error your first time applying! (It’s always worse when you miss a spot and your tan is super dark).
Go with the dark drops and not the light-medium. My skin is pretty fair, and I use the dark version. I simply use less drops, and my bottle lasts longer!
Apply a generous amount of lotion on the back of your hands and less drops than you’d apply anywhere else. Sometimes I even use the drops I use on my face for my hands. Simply because the face drops are much more subtle.
Keep your skin moisturized each day after applying the tanner, and your color will last longer and fade nicely.
I hope this post helps y’all get ready for Spring and all the fun Spring styles coming out as well! I know I’m ready! If you enjoyed this post, please consider subscribing to my blog as well as following me on Instagram! Simply click on “About” from the menu, scroll to the bottom, and enter your email. I love to share everyday fashion, beauty & lifestyle favorites! ☺️
Hello there! My first beauty product review coming rightttt up. Many of you have heard of Beauty Counter, and some of you haven’t! Basically, it is a nontoxic skincare/makeup brand that holds themselves to the highest standard with their ingredients. They even use nontoxic packaging to prevent harmful leaching into their products, pretty awesome! I love brands that truly care about the health of our skin, and don’t just market terms like “glowy” and “healthy-looking,” without having the ingredients to back that up.
I learned about Beauty Counter through a good friend of mine who recently became a consultant. She educated me a little bit about the lack of regulation in the cosmetic industry when it comes to what goes into our products (pretty scary). Beauty Counter is working towards changing that, which is a wonderful thing for us all! They have a list of ingredients that they call the “Never” list. This is a list of ingredients you should stay away from, and they are in many products on shelves everywhere. I’ll put a picture of the list below, and you can see if your products pass the test!
I’ll link their websitehere in case you’d like to read a little bit more about the company.
Now, I’ll tell you what I thought about the products so far! Are they worth the hype??
I used nothing but Beauty Counter creams, cleansers, and rosewater facial spray for a solid week. Here’s a picture of the lineup: (Essential Nourishing Collection)
What I noticed:
My skin was so much more hydrated, and stayed that way throughout the day. (I have VERY dry skin in the winter.)
The texture of my skin was smoother, and fine lines around my eyes were much less noticeable. My makeup applied better, and also looked smoother–no need for primer!
My skin had less redness, and looked brighter. I got away with wearing less makeup for sure.
Since these products are definitely on the pricier side, I’ll let you know what I decided to purchase so far:
Sleep Cream – A step above the night cream that I tested originally (I felt like my skin could use the extra moisture this provides.) I LOVE this product. I didn’t know how much my skin needed this–I wake up with my skin feeling much softer. Worth the money for sure.
Eye rescue cream – Also a step above in hydration from the eye cream I originally tested from the nourishing line. I’ve tried a lot of eye creams out there, and I honestly have to say this is my favorite so far.
Nourishing cream exfoliator – This stuff does a great job at getting rid of dead skin while still being emollient and not harsh. I have been looking for a really good exfoliator safe to use multiple times a week, so this is perfect for that.
Overall, I am excited to add these products to my routine mainly because I am confident that every ingredient is healthy for my skin (no nonsense toxic chemicals). At the end of the day, I believe that what we use to nourish our skin should be a priority over many other beauty products we get caught up in (makeup, tanners, lashes, etc.) Great skin = Wearing less of everything else. 🙂
I hope this helps those of you who are interested in trying Beauty Counter or any other nontoxic skincare! As always, thanks for reading and talk to you soon.
I have been working mostly from home the past two days due to snow here in Apex (if you’re local, you know that everything here is shut down when it snows lol), and I thought I would write a quick post on winter skin care items that I have loved and used for years now! I really enjoy posts about beauty products, and I hope y’all do too!
These products will all be great for winter time, or if you’re like me, you can use them year-round (I have very dry skin). Also–I wanted to note that none of these products have ever broken me out!
CeraVe Lotion: I have been using this for years now. It is what my dermatologist suggested when I told her I wanted something rich and nourishing without being heavy and greasy. I put this on my face and body every day.
2. Mario Badescu Facial Spray: This product is so cooling and hydrating. I spray this product after washing my face in the morning (before moisturizer), and throughout the day if I feel like I need it. The aloe in it is very soothing as well. MB Facial Spray
3. Smashbox Primer Oil: Y’all, this stuff is so amazing. It is so much more than a primer. I mix a few drops of this with my cerave moisturizer morning and night. I also pat extra product around my eyes to act as a serum/eye cream. This stuff sinks in really well. I tested a different face oil in place of this when I ran out of it last month, and I noticed my skin was getting so dull and dry. I repurchased this, and I will continue to do so! SB Primer Oil
4. Bareminerals Complexion Rescue: This is not a tinted moisturizer or bb cream. This is a hydrating tinted gel cream, and it is so good for your skin! It really does improve your skin’s hydration level, and makes your skin look so radiant! I love to wear this on “no makeup” makeup days or underneath my powders as a hydrating base when I need it. It does give you a bit of coverage, and it also has spf 30! BM Complexion Rescue
5. Vaseline Lip Therapy: The most old school product on this list, and it works so well. I put this on my lips before bed because it is thicker than normal chapstick, and most lip oils I have tried are too sticky. I for sure cannot skip this during the winter, or my lips become so chapped. Vaseline Lip Therapy
Alright, those are my must-have products for the Winter time! I hope this helps y’all out with dry winter skin! Stay warm out there!
I have gotten manyyy questions over the years of what I use on my hair, and I thought that this post might be helpful to those of you who are looking for products to help keep your hair healthy and manageable. Personally, I love talking about anything beauty product related (especially hair), so feel free to leave me a comment below of your favorite products as well! I’m sharing absolutely every product I use in my hair from hair masks to dry shampoo, and I’ll try to keep it short lol!
To start, a little bit about my hair: I have very thick, sort of coarse hair. I do highlight my hair, so that adds to the dryness. I tend to gravitate towards products that add moisture back into my hair. So, if your hair is more on the oily side, some of these products may not be the best for you.
Shampoo: I have used this shampoo for years. I love to buy the huge bottle from Ulta, and it lasts me months and months. I like that it is still moisturizing, as some shampoos in the past have left my hair incredibly dull.
Purple Shampoo: This of course is for blondes, to neutralize brassy tones. If you’re looking for something extreme that’s going to give you a super cool-toned effect, maybe try leaving this product in a bit longer. Personally, I just like to have a more neutral tone, so I leave it in for the normal amount of time. I have used other purple shampoos in the past that were pretty harsh on my hair. This one is perfect, and I have been through multiple bottles of it.
Hair Mask: My FAVORITE type of hair product. I do not use regular conditioners ever–only hair masks. This has certainly been my go to hair mask for years (and I have tried a lot). It gives my hair back so much life and shine. My other go to’s are by It’s a Ten and Nexxus (I switch off and use these every so often.)
Leave-in Product: (For all hair types!!!) I can thank my hair dresser for this one. When I first started coming to her 10 years ago, my hair was a hot mess–I was that 14 year old girl who experimented and abused my hair (why was I so obsessed with flat irons???). She suggested this product to me, and I’ve used it ever since. I put this in my damp hair every time I wash it. I have gotten every single one of my friends to use this as well.
Heat Protectant: This is my newest product that I have added to my must haves, and omggg where has this been all my life?? Thank you Birch Box for sending this to me! I am for sure purchasing the full size. I never thought I could blow out my own hair until using this. It makes your hair sooooo smooth, and no frizz at all. Plus, it protects from the heat!!!
Pure Coconut Oil: The one product from this list that you can also cook with lol. I put this in my dry hair right BEFORE washing it. Do not put this in your hair as a leave-in product. You will totally be a grease ball. This helps keep the moisture in my hair balanced before going in with regular shampoo + purple shampoo. You can buy this at the grocery store of course, or TJ Maxx!
Dry Shampoo: I don’t like washing my hair more than I need to, so anything that will prolong my hair style is good for me. I’ve tried many dry shampoos, and this one is the best for the price. I buy mine at TJ Maxx (cheaper than Ulta.)