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My Current Morning Skincare Routine

Happy Monday Friends! I have to admit, some Mondays I'm totally not prepared to start the new week and I just need one more day between Saturday and Sunday to get me through. Other weeks, I'm like, ohhhhkay, can Monday get here? Because I need a routine back in my life ASAP. Anyone else relate to that serious love/hate relationship? Or am I just crazy? 

Either way, Monday is here! And I wanted to chat a little bit about my current skincare favs.. I get asked a ton about my favorite skincare products on Instagram and I actually have to admit I'm a bit of a skincare junkie. I grew up watching my Mom religiously use Avon products on her face and my grandma even sold it for year, even though my Mom never really wore a ton of makeup, she totally takes care of her skin. I took after my Dad in the skin department though, I struggled with mild acne through most of my teenage years and now, even at 30, I'm still struggling with the occasional breakout and massive pimple that just WON'T go away. I've tried so many products over the years to try to get rid of my acne, and also balance my skin and prevent aging. It's tough to find products that are great for both and I add and eliminate new products from my skincare routine all the time. I enjoy trying new things, but do have some tired and true favorites! 

I'm going to share my current MORNING skincare routine with you guys and also give you a heads up and a little information about some of my favorite products, how I use them, and just what they've done for my skin! 

Let's start with Step 1: 
I always start with a mild cleanser in the AM and this Anthony Algae Cleanser is my new favorite! I can't rave enough about it! The smell is AMAZING. The texture is almost a gel like consistency and a little goes a long way. My skin feels SO hydrated afterwards, but never oily. Since using this cleanser I've had no new breakouts, my skin feels hydrated, and my skin feels SO CLEAN. I use this every morning with my Foreo Play. 

Step 2: 
I always like to address any blemishes, or pimples immediately after cleansing my skin. I use a variety of different products to treat my acne,but currently I wipe my face with a Clearasil Rapid Rescue Deep Treatment Pad, after that, I'll spot treat any active blemishes or bumps with this acne clearing gel. Just a heads up, this stuff is DRYING! BUT it will literally clear up ANY acne or blemish OVERNIGHT. I put this on before I go to bed sometimes and I wake up and my blemishes are either completely gone, or at very least, decreased significantly in size when I wake up in the morning. I always ALWAYS have this on hand. ESPECIALLY on vacation, because you just never know. 

Step 3: 
I love my Thayer's Witch Hazel Toner but I have recently introduced this Glow Tonic into my routine and YOU GUYS! It's a game changer. Especially if you have acne. My complexion can get really dull from all of the acne treatments and some tonic's can break me out worse. I was honestly expecting a skin purge from using this product and was so surprised when I didn't have one! Instead, my dry skin is exfoliated away and my skin feels brighter, I have also noticed a significant reduction in dark spots and my skin tone is overall more even. I use this every OTHER day in the AM only. 

Step 4: 
I really struggle with moisturizers, most of them are super heavy for my oily skin. I've raved about this one before though and even over so many other (much pricier!) options, this one is still my favorite. It doesn't feel heavy on my skin but moisturizes so well. It doesn't break me out either. It hydrates, but still lets my skin breathe if that makes any sort of sense. I apply this MORNING AND NIGHT. Under my eyes, I have been using this eye brightening cream from Saturday Skin and I'm really diggin' it so far. It has a really light base, no scent and feels super hydrating under my eyes. I've been using it for about 3 weeks and can already see a significant improvement in my under eye area. plus  the packaging is super cute! 

Another game changer skincare tool I've added to my routine is this Sonic Eraser Pro! IT HAS CHANGED my life. NOT EVEN KIDDING. I use it after I apply my moisturizer and under my eyes, it heats up to allow the serums and moisturizers to enter your skin and help your skincare products do their job more efficiently. I have already seen a significant decrease in the small lines around my eyes and between my brows! It also helps depuff the under-eye area and my skin feels brighter after I use it. I'm not normally into these kind of tools because I don't find them to work, but this one is completely different, not to mention, it's super relaxing!

So that's it! My current morning skincare routine! If you've tried any of these products, I would love to hear from you! I'll update with a new post every month of current products I've tried, what I've added to my skincare routine, and what I have eliminated from it. Thanks for stopping by today! You can shop everything from this post below!

Self Tanning 101

Can someone tell me how it's almost July? Because I swear it was literally APRIL like, 18 seconds ago. 

Anyway, for Friday Favorites today I wanted to share with you guys my favorite (and not so favorite) self tanners. I feel like this post has been a long time coming with lots of trial and error. At this point in my life, I consider myself KIND of an expert when it comes to self tanning just because I've tried SO many on the market right now. Honestly, there is nothing to be scared about when it comes to self tanning, if you hate it when it's applied, it will typically come off with some exfoliation in your next shower. One of you guys also gave me some great advice about using baking soda to remove a botched tan.

So below I'm going to answer some questions I get asked a TON about self tanning and also share my personal experience with you! I made the mistakes so you don't have to.;)

What Self Tanners have you tried?
There are so many different types of tanners! The 1st one is foam, the second is lotion and the third is the spray! 

I have used a large assortment of different self tanners, including many drugstore brands, I have tried the L'oreal Sublime Spray, and towelettes. Jergen's gradual tanning in shower lotion and Jergen's Dark Tanning Foam {loved that!} , Loving Tan, Fake Bake, Tarte, and most recently, St. Tropez. Of all of the ones I tried, the L'oreal Sublime Spray was the only one that gave me an orange hue. Loving tan left me splotchy and faded quickly. Fake Bake left me feeling sticky. 

Do you have to use a mitt when applying self tanner?

I've had several people tell me they use gloves, makeup brushes, and even their hands to apply self tanning lotion. I have ALWAYS used a mitt! I've tried applying with my bare hands and also with gloves but neither give me the result that I want from a self tanner, and using my hands is messy. The mitt provides a soft, even application. I apply the self tanner to the mitt, and apply it in large circular motions all over my body. I've NEVER been blotchy after using a mitt. I always just wash and reuse mine after each application. Here is a cheap one you can grab for multiple uses, here.

What is your favorite drugstore brand of Self Tanner?

I was really impressed with the Jergen's Instant Foam Moose.. It went on smoothly, didn't leave me orange or streaky, and gave me a nice light tan. For the price point it did the job! My only complaint is that it faded sort of blotchy and didn't get me as dark as I usually like. It also didn't last long (about 3 days.) It's a great option if you're on a budget and want to experience with self-tanning! 

What is your ALL time favorite Self Tanner?

After trying several high end brands I can honestly say that I'm still in 
love with the Tarte Brazilliance Plus+ Self Tanner. It gets me SUPER dark, even when I'm pale. So it's perfect for vacation! It also holds up really well with swimming and salt water. It fades evenly, leaves my skin feeling moisturized and doesn't leave behind a strong odor. 

You can find it here.

I also really love the St. Tropez Express Spray! It would be great to take on vacation to touch up a botchy or fading tan mid-week. It also gets you SUPER dark in under an hour! Doesn't leave a strong odor and and applies evenly. I spray myself first, then rub it in in small circles with a mitt. I usually ask Nick to get my back but I will sometimes attach the mitt to a back scrubber and it works pretty well.

You can find it here.

Now for the fun part, Are you ready to get your tan on?!

Shower, Shave and exfoliate the night before you plan to self tan. You want the tanner going on CLEAN, DRY skin. I exfoliate the night before with (this) using a loofah.  DO NOT use lotion the day that you plan to tan, the tanner will streak and appear blotchy in spots. You can hydrate AFTER you shower after the tanning application. 

My favorite exfoliation treatment is this one! From Sol De Janerio here! Smells so good!

2.  Apply your tanner liberally to the mitt. You should ALWAYS use a mitt if you want a soft natural looking tan. 

3. I like to start with my legs, working my way down to my calves, and feet. I use small circular motions to apply. Then I will do my arms, starting with my upper arm, and moving to my lower arm avoiding my elbows. After I apply the lotion to my entire arm, I'll move the excess lotion lightly over my elbows, knees and inner wrists. Then I move to my sides, stomach and back. Finishing with my neck, this is where it gets tricky. I will take the lotion all the way up my neck and even a little under my chin but I don't do my face. Making sure to blend really well. 

4. After the application process, I will take a baby wipe along the spot where my inner wrist meets my palm, and the bottoms of my feet. 

5. Once your whole body is covered you should be able to see where you should take your mitt to blend a little more, this is where the mitt comes in handy because you can just rub it along the spots you think need a little more attention or over any spots you missed during your first application. You shouldn't have to apply anymore self tanner, just blend what's on your mitt into the spots you feel like you missed.

 You do NOT apply multiple layers at once. 

6. After I apply self tanner, I wear a robe for about 30 minutes while the lotion sets and drys. Also, be careful about transfer and letting your skin touch any fabrics (note: don't sit on your white bedspread.) Then I'll put on loose fitting clothing, usually comfy shorts and a t-shirt for an extra 2 hours while the tan sets. I usually wait about 4 hours before showering. It will appear that most of the tan comes off but that's normal. The product has already set into your skin and this point and the dark color is just excess. After you shower you shouldn't experience any transfer. 

Here's a little behind the scenes peek at my tanning session via Instagram stories yesterday! 

So, that's it! I'm linking my favorite self tanner's and products below for you to check out. As always, if you have any questions about self tanning or the process, let me know and I will add them to this post! I hope you found this helpful! I appreciate you taking the time to stop by and say "hey!" If you liked this post, drop a comment below!

Dining Room Refresh Reveal

Hey babes! I'm SO excited to finally share our little dining room refresh with you guys. It's been a long time comin' because I know I've been talking about wanting to do it for months. But with the multiple projects we have going on currently it just got put on the back burner, especially since we have so many other things going on here at the Scardina Casa and with the weather warming up we've been doing a few things outside. 

I've been wanting to paint our dining room for a long time. I've always loved the color it was previously, Wood Smoke, By Behr. but it was just time for a change. I get bored when things are the same for a really long time and for me apparently, 5 years is a really long time. Like, a really really realllllllly long time. 

So here we go!! I'm so excited to give ya'll the details of our dining room refresh!
Our dining room is at the front of our house, which is also where we have a big huge tree blocking the sun from coming in for a large part of the day. This means the dining room often looks dark and looked even darker with the dark wood tones, and darker walls. I knew I had to do somethings to make it light, bright and airy again. 

It started with choosing a white paint color. Which can be easier said than done my friends. Easier said than done. I have a few different white shades in our home but this one has a gray base which I really loved. It's actually a gray color but looks more white to me, just with a sight gray tint. I hate STARK white rooms so this was the perfect color for me. I always tend to shift towards grays anyway. 

I also knew I had to add a few things to brighten up the space, I realized that the dark table, although I did love it, didn't help with new "look" I was going for. When I was coming up with budget friendly ways to update this space, I knew I would, for the most part, keep the decor the same and would instead opt for a few BIG updates.

 Like the table, new chairs, and a new chandelier. I have always loved mixing furniture together to create a space that feels unique to me, so I kept with that trend and opted for 2 new sets of chairs, one set World Market had light wood tones to help ground things a bit, and the other set for a bit of glam cottage type of vibes. I loved tufted anything lately and these chairs are super gorgeous! 

I knew I wanted more of a french country style chandelier and this one was exactly what I was looking for for my space!

I also ditched the last jute rug I had in our house and opted for one with lighter tones and colors to tie in the accents in the space. This one is under $120 and a STEAL! The colors are gorgeous and it's exactly what I was looking for. 

I'm really happy with how it turned out, the new spaces feels fresh, light and airy. Especially compared to the way it was before. 

You can shop everything from this post below, but feel free to shoot me a message if I missed something! 

What do you guys think about the changes? Are you working on any room make-overs of your own? I'd love to hear about them! Shoot me a message, leave a comment below or come hang out over on Instagram!

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Friday Favorites {Tanks & Towels!}

Hey Beauts! Happy Friday! The weather is gorgeous here today and it has been for the past week. I've been busy soaking up every second! We opened the pool this week and I'm anxious to get in it for the first time this year. We are SO ready for Summer. This week I tried to get back into the swing of Instagram and my blog after being burned out of 2 major home renovations that I can't wait to share with you guys soon. Sometimes we just need to take a step back and get back in touch with ourselves. It was nice to take a break but in the end I missed you guys! I'm so thankful for you!

So anyway, The week was busy, which is how I like it for productivity and it helps get my creative vibes flowing again. Know what I'm saying? We're wrapping up lots of end of school things, planning to head to Disney in less than 2 weeks, and preparing Sav to start kindergarten in the fall. Which I am SO not ready for by the way!

So anyway, let's recap on the week and what you guys loved the most over the past few days, shall we?

1.// This gorgeous blue & ivory rug

I shared on my stories for under $120 is SUCH A STEAL. No wonder so many of you snagged this beauty. It's such an awesome deal and such quality for the price. I can't wait to share our little mini dining room makeover with you guys, I really hope you love the light subtle changes as much as I do. I'm in the process of switching out all the jute rugs in our home for more lighter shades and neutral tones. If only because I just want something a little new,fresh and different. If you've been on the hunt for the perfect rug on a budget, you can find this beauty here.

2. Madewell V-Neck Tanks //

The. MOST. AMAZING. V-NECK. TANKS. EVER. I can't even deal with how comfy and versatile these tanks are. If you're looking for a low key summer staple for your wardrobe, these are perfect, and the fact that they're under $20 makes them even more appealing. For reference, I'm wearing an XS in the picture. And the color is Mauve Shadow. You can find them here.

3. Medallion Bath Towels// 

If you missed the awesome sale on these, don't fret. Even the full price isn't bad on these beauties. I snagged these for our master bathroom because of the pretty pattern and neutral tones, but mostly because I loved the fringe. I mean, I obviously need ALL THE FRINGE THINGS. You can get them here.

4.Becca Hydra Mist Facial Powder// Maybe the best way to update your Summer makeup/skincare is adding the product to you're daily routine. If you use foundation or BB cream daily and use a setting powder, you NEED TO UPGRADE. Let me tell ya, this product is a GAME changer. It is powder when you pick it up, but turns to a liquid when you put it on your face. Creating a smooth airbrush finish on your skin. Not only that, but it has a cooling sensation which is perfect if you need a little mid-day makeup refresh. If you have trouble finding a setting powder that doesn't dry out your skin or settle into lines, SEARCH NO MORE and add this to your cart A.S.A.P! Then you can thank me later. 

5. Monogram Mug//
 Snagged the CUTEST little monogram mug at anthropologie a few weeks ago, I love the colors and the pretty patterns. It didn't really surprise me that so many of you babes snagged one too! Also, don't mind the weird spray tan line, that's what I get for letting Nick test out my new St.Tropez Pro Light on me! HA!!!!!

So there ya have it! The best finds of the week according to YOU! These posts are so fun and literally would NOT be possible without you, so when I say THANK YOU I mean it. I really really mean it! I hope you all have the best weekend ever! As always I love to hear from you, so drop a comment for me below or send me a message on Instagram! Can't wait to see what you guys think about this weeks finds! XOXO

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