January Q&A: BEAUTY, FASHION, HOME & HEALTH

Well, good morning! It’s been a while since I’ve done a Q&A, so I asked for questions on Instagram, and I got a lot more than I expected!

I can’t fit them all in this post, so I chose the ones I felt were better suited to the blog, and I can answer the rest on Stories.

If you like this, I can try to it once a month.

Skincare/Makeup/Beauty Questions

Q // A while ago, you mentioned teeth whitening. How did you find it? Would you recommend?

A // Yes, I did the Zoom whitening at my dentist’s office last spring, but I didn’t love the results.

They tried to do 3 rounds, but I had major pain towards the end of the 2nd round, and I couldn’t do the 3rd. They sent me home with the at-home kit, and I continued to use that — I actually used it up.

I guess my teeth got a little whiter, but they’re pretty much back to “normal” now. For the cost and in-office experience, I expected dramatic results, and I didn’t get that. Next time, I’ll just use Crest Whitestrips. I’ve had better results with those, and they’re a heckuvalot cheaper.

Q // Thoughts on facials, like peels for example? 

A // I think facials are beneficial and every woman should get them regularly from a trusted aesthetician.

For the past few years, I’ve been getting facials a few times a year at the spa where I go for my mani/pedis. I often purchase their package deals, so sometimes I’ll get 3 or 4 in a short period of time. I enjoy them, and they also seem to help my skin’s texture and radiance. I’ve tried different kinds, but nothing harsh. Any “peels” or “acids” are fairly mild.

In the past year, I’ve started seeing a cosmetic dermatologist, where I get monthly glycolic peels. I can definitely tell a difference in the texture and radiance in my skin. They aren’t as relaxing as the ones I get at the spa, but the results are more noticeable. If you go that route, do your research and find someone REALLY good.

Q // Did you find a good product for chapped lips?

A // Yes, I use Laneige Lip Sleeping Mask every night, and my lips have never been in better shape.

Q // Can you recommend a tinted moisturizer?

A // Laura Mercier’s tinted moisturizer is a cult-favorite, and for good reason. It’s one of the best I’ve tried and actually gives you some coverage, while keeping your skin looking natural and dewy-soft. Bonus, it has SPF 30.

Fashion Questions

Q // I’m going to Florida next week from cold Toronto… unsure what to wear on the plane. Help?

A // I would wear jeans with a short-sleeve tee or tank or sleeveless blouse under a cozy cardigan. Wear that to stay warm on the plane, and then when you get to your destination, you can toss your cardigan in your tote.

Put your coat on top of that. If you have someone drop you at the door at the airport, and picking you up when you get back, you can leave your coat in the car. Otherwise, wear to airport and carry it on the plane — or leave room in your luggage and stash it before checking your bags.

For shoes, I usually wear ballet flats or loafers in the airport for easy on and off, or sneakers if you will need them at your destination. I have TSA Precheck, so sneakers aren’t too much of a hassle anymore.

Bring flip flops in your carry-on to swap out once you get to Florida. Roll up your jeans for a cropped look, ditch the cardigan, and you’re ready to go!

You might also like: What I Packed for my Disney Vacation + My Travel Outfit and What I Packed for Florida + My Travel Outfit

Q // What trends are you seeing for spring?

A // I definitely think we’re seeing the crop straight denim trend hit the mainstream. I don’t think skinnies will be “out” entirely, but they’ll be taking backseat to this more current silhouette.

Q // How do we create our own rough hem on jeans?

A // This is a good tutorial: How to DIY a Raw Hem, According to Madewell’s Denim Expert

Q // What do you think are the most common fashion mistakes at the moment?

A // I would say buying clothes that do not fit properly (i.e. too big or too small) and wearing styles that aren’t designed to complement your individual body.

Q // Transitional pieces that work in winter but you want something springtime?

A // Pick up a few lighter/brighter color sweaters, and pair them with white jeans or lighter bottoms.

Q // Which fashion trends do you wish came back “in”? Which do you wish would go away?

A // I’ll start with what I wish would go away — leggings as pants. UGGGHHHHHHHHH…..

Also, oversized tops and sweaters with drop shoulders, and the front tuck, which is a necessity when wearing the former.

I still do it sometimes because it looks modern, and it’s often necessary with current styles, but I think it looks silly and we will eventually look back on it and laugh at ourselves.

As far as fashion trends I wish would come back… traditional styles that fit and flatter a woman’s body. Like full length pants and jeans.

Also, tops with on-shoulder seams that skim the body and are shaped to flatter a womanly figure, and at a length that you can wear untucked and maintain proper balance.

Q // Did you keep those “New Years” heels, and if so, will you use them for a piece?

A // Yes, I did, and I will try! I think they would look best with a dress or skirt.

Q // How do you know if skinny jeans are too big or too tight? And do I need to take shrinkage into account?

A // I would say, the biggest mistake women make with skinny jeans is buying them too big. Mine hardly ever shrink, they’re more likely to stretch out some with wear.

I also recommend wearing them around the house for an hour or so, with tags on, to see how they are going to hold up. Some lower-end brands really bag out.

If in doubt, size down.

Q // Where is a good place to buy clothes for 50-year-old husband? Help!

A // Nordstrom! Their men’s department has a wide variety of styles and brands at various price points, and their sales associates are usually excellent. My husband is a convert.

HOME

Q // Closet organization? Help… do you switch clothes out seasonally?

A // Yes, most definitely. I can’t stand to have clothes in my closet that aren’t a viable option at the moment. I move out of season clothes to the basement in labeled plastic bins, probably 3 or 4 times a year.

You might also like: How I Transition My Closet For Fall

As far as organization goes, the best thing I ever did was install a custom closet organization system. I had one in my last house, and it was one of the first things I scheduled when we moved into this house.

Q // How do you fold or hang sweaters without getting creases or bumps in the shoulders?

A // I fold my sweaters like this, and store them on shelves — see above picture of my closet. (I’ve also started stacking like colors together, unlike the picture above.)

Health

Q // More info on IF…. I bought the book after I saw you reading it and would like help.

A // I really recommend reading the entire book, and Gin’s story at the end, before starting. A lot will become clear.

But even with that, I’ve already learned a lot more from listening to just one of her podcasts. Even if you aren’t a “podcast person” — I’m not — it’s worth your time to listen to a few.

Q // Healthy lunch ideas?

A // I’m a big fan of leftover dinner or soup. Or I will have tuna salad or egg salad, and follow it up with berries or other fruit.

Personal/Life

Q // How long have you been a Christian?

A // I don’t remember ever not being a believer, but I made a decision to accept Christ and live for the Lord when I was about 7 years old. It’s been a very sloooooow growth process ever since. (Emphasis on slow, lol!)

I’m a work in progress, like we all are, but my faith has always been an important part of my life, and I’m thankful for parents who raised me in a Christian home.

Q // Do you ever get bored with your wardrobe?

A // This one made me laugh. Either this person thinks I should be bored (because I wear grey sweaters and mid-wash skinny jeans every day, lol!) or she doesn’t see how many clothes I cycle through my closet.

No, I do not get bored with my wardrobe. In fact, I wish I could wear my favorites more, but that wouldn’t make for very interesting What I Wore posts every other week… or a very attractive Instagram grid.

Yes, those are the things I think about when getting dressed each day.

Q // What is a normal weekday or even week like for you? (What’s your schedule?)

A // I’ve been wanting to do a whole post on this, but I never seem to get around to it. Here it is in a nutshell:

I always get up between 5 and 6AM. I go right downstairs, make coffee, have my devotion, and start working. I take a break to get my daughter on the bus around 6:45, and then I’m back at work until it’s time to exercise or I need to go somewhere.

I try to run (these days, it’s more of a walk/run) or work out every day, but that doesn’t always happen. (I work out with a trainer 2X a week.)

During the day, I sometimes have doctor or spa/beauty appointments, but I try keep my mornings somewhat open for work, as that’s when I’m most efficient and energetic. If I don’t have an appointment or a photo shoot or a reason to run to the mall, I’m at home working at the computer.

In the afternoons, I sometimes I have to pick my daughter up from band practice, and there are other things that crop up, of course, but otherwise, I pretty much work every weekday from when I wake up until when I go to the kitchen to make dinner. This job never sleeps, and there’s always something I could be doing.

Dinnertime is when I shut it down. I hardly ever come back to my office after dinner. We have dinner as a family, and we usually hang out in the family room and watch TV afterwards. I am in bed by 9PM most nights. I know, I’m a grannie!

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