A place to start…

Washing our faces, you’d think it would be easy by now…humans made the wheel, we discovered fire, I mean really – how hard could it be?! From what I hear people seemed challenged by this task. What do I use? How often should I be doing this? Why?

I don’t think the act of washing one’s face is what people struggle with. It’s about understanding the benefits: prolong signs of aging, prevent blemishes, preventing dehydration of face + lips, reducing oiliness and so many more. To clean your face you don’t need fancy things. In my first blog post I shared one of my favorite products – Skinny Coconut Oil – like cleans like, oil rids oil. #science

My first trick isn’t really a trick, it’s committing to the cause. What you put in you get out. I typically start my daytime routine with my Clarisonic – two minute setting. I travel with it, everywhere, even 20 minutes to the westside when we stay with my husband’s family. I keep multiple cleansers in the shower to use with it. Right now I have Jurlique Balancing Cleanser (the link takes you to an newer version of the cleanser than what I have) and Peter Thomas Roth Anti-aging Cleanser. I recently went through my  Perricone MD Citrus Facial Wash (loved it!) on deck to replace it is the Indie Lee Brightening Cleanser. A brand I recently heard some buzz about, especially this face wash, I’m excited to see how it works!

Why all the options?  First, I’m in my thirties – it is NOT too soon to add anti-aging into my regimen. Second, I am a woman and my hormones fluctuate as well as my lifestyle (like eating a corn dog and taffy at the State Fair), I may need something to counter my body’s reactions. Third, my job exposes me to different elements and that can vary significantly during some seasons. Finally, I DO wear makeup occasionally – a full face of it – and my skin might break out if I haven’t washed my brushes in a couple weeks. I take these things into consideration from day-to-day & seasonly. One morning may call for deep cleaning while another (day after a facial) I may go with something more gentle.

I learned about properly cleaning my face by reading various articles as a youth and decided then – if I had ANY role in the condition of my skin I would try. I read: wash at night before bed…ALWAYS TAKE YOUR MAKE UP OFF. This rule is a game changer. I followed through and saw the benefits early on. I rarely wear makeup (#joblove) but I do need to wash off the sweat + dirt from the day so I can go with a simpler cleanser at night.

If you thought this was a lot, please stop reading. NOW. Skip to last paragraph 🙂 ***PRODUCT JUNKIE ALERT****

Sometimes I don’t want all the suds so I use the oil, if my skin is in need of something a little more “aggressive” I’ll use DERMADOCTOR Wrinkle Revenge® 1 which I apply onto dry skin and work in then add water. I also use AMOREPACIFIC Treatment Enzyme Peel which is a powder, add a little water + create soft suds then apply to face, gentle but effective. Like I mentioned earlier, the Oil I use to clean goes directly on the skin and is wiped off with a hot, wet rag after a 30 second compress.

Let it simmer. What I do may seem a bit extreme, but I loved to learn about my skin to and I also love product. (I warned you, #productjunkie). I may have a couple containers full of samples which could some day lead me to my next favorite product – go to Sephora online or stop in at Eva Maison and they’ll hook you up. I may end up with a blemish here and there but this is what works for me. I enjoy the process so I am more likely to follow through. Guys and girls alike, use this at your own discretion. My advice: start simple.

If you’re thinking – this girl says she’s a yogi, does she even understand the meaning of aparigraha (non-possessiveness) or brahmacharya (moderation)? I acquired all of these items over a period of time. It doesn’t cause me pain when I run out, I actually find myself delighted at the opportunity to try something new. My purchases last a long time since I vary in what I use. My friends lovingly joke that getting ready at my house is like visiting the spa, and maybe that’s what I love…that feeling that comes over me as I practice self care. If you need me to say it, to each their own, mine just happens to [currently] include five different types of face wash 🙂

Thanks for sticking it out.

Love & Gratitude,

Xp

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What is Yoga?

Just a few days ago, we started our first day of Yoga Teacher Training. Honestly, I was so excited + terrified that my eye was twitching from the Wednesday before until the morning we started. It was not fear of content or the students, but something deeper…my body was letting me know with those little (annoying) flutterings of my right eyelid.

WTF?! Even in my ‘honest’ words I could say I was nervous, but tried to act calm and collected, my body was saying YOU ARE BLOODY TERRIFIED!! “You don’t know what you’re doing.” “Why the hell did you ever think you could do this?” Even if I wouldn’t let those thoughts come to the forefront of my mind, I was fearful of failure and letting those around me down, so my body was responding. And as if the Universe knew just what I needed, I came across this “Thoughts are the sensations of the mind, and sensations are the thoughts of the body” in our reading from the week – Judith Laster‘s book Living Your Yoga (she is one of the most epic of all time!!). Just like that, it all slid into place. Since we started Sunday I haven’t had any eye twitching 🙂 I was letting fear exist in my mind and my body was responding, after my mind found peace so did my body.

When we try to deceive ourselves, our body will respond. When we go too hard or aren’t honoring ourselves authentically something will force the body into listening. You are forced to stop and take a good hard look at what’s going on NOW. Then it becomes a matter of choice, are you ready to listen? I often tell my students who are injured or suffering when life has challenged them – it’s the Universe presenting them with an opportunity to look through a different lens. I’m not saying you should have torn your ACL, MCL and Meniscus – but maybe it’s time to see your practice as a beginner once again. Remind yourself why you keep coming back to your mat & what you can learn from this new perspective. Often times these challenges are opportunities that will us into remembering – we are enough, ALWAYS – and to check in with that. THIS is what yoga teaches us. In my case, after a few deep breaths with each twitch, let the fear or anxious feelings subside and there I was back to my (mostly) normal self. Applying my yoga while thinking about my yoga 🙂 #ironicbutnotironic

This week’s theme was based around the question of many lifetimes, “what is yoga?” and in all honesty, these students are truly brilliant. #blessed What they each spoke to resonated with me and I believe it resonated with all of them. It was the feelings behind their unique descriptions that were similar and what made it so powerful.

So, what is yoga? I cannot define it for you, we each have our own personal spin on this. Yoga to me is contentment. It is the feeling of knowing that “I got this” when life is tough, it’s the feeling of remaining calm when sh*t hits the fan, the idea that when I “see red” over something horrific or devastatingly upsetting, I remember I am human and these are my lessons to learn and that eventually the sensations will subside. I come back to my True Self and I find peace in knowing the Universe wants me to flourish. The more I live my life in honor of my light, the Universe will support me, and the easier my yoga comes to me.

Yoga is more than a word that is derived from Sanskrit. It is more than the poses on your mat. It isn’t just a few things, it’s EVERYTHING. Embody this practice into your life and you will become your yoga – in your relationships, in your career, as you do chores – everywhere. YOUR yoga awaits you dearest lights. When faced with life’s challenges, ask yourself if you’re living from love or fear? Catch yourself in the present moment with the chatter of your mind and see if you can make the shifts so you are more often living from that source of grace + compassion and not out of the fear. Rinse. Repeat.

You are always in possession of everything you need, you carry it with you at all times. Please, if anything, remember that you are loved. Our experiences do not define us but they help us find our beautiful True Self that has and will ALWAYS be there. Think of all the things that bring you joy and those moments you feel fulfilled (not like bank account fulfilled, but where you feel ease within) and use those to set the tone for your life…that is your yoga. Namaste.

Self Care

The importance of Self Care is hardly a new concept. In my last post I had committed to blogging weekly about product…then life happened. The 100th running of the Indianapolis 500 kicked off the busiest summer yet. I was in a wedding, got married in two weeks (I am NOT expecting!), prepping to be in another wedding and have been co-planning our very first Yoga Teacher Training which starts in less than a week! Now that most of those things  have settled I’ve decided to get back to doing a little bit more of what I do well: promote self care + share my favorite products.

Why should you keep reading? What makes me think I’m any good at this? Yesterday confirmed my thoughts (and likely inspired me to write today). I was at the mall and decided to share my unsolicited opinion with two different women while waiting in line (in two different stores) and they both took my advice! Why would these strangers do that? Likely, because I shared the information authentically or I must look really trustworthy lol. #ishouldgetpaidforthis Also, I have plenty of friends that ask for my advice so I figured I should offer it up on a forum accessible to anyone that is interested.

Below I’ve broken down MY thoughts on this topic, this is no one else’s opinion but my own.

First – Self Care means INSIDE & OUT. It includes what you eat, the actions you take + don’t take, and how you treat your largest organ: your SKIN. Embrace the creepy: you want the guy from Silence of the Lambs to want to wear your skin as a jumpsuit, but not really. At best, you want to look five years younger without all the botox and fillers – it’s about aging gracefully. Genetics is a factor but a lot of this is controlled by you. You have to commit to making this a priority and no one else can do that for you. i.e. don’t smoke, drink in moderation, consume plenty of water & eat clean, whole foods – results from these healthier habits will quickly show up on the surface.

Second – fitness/activity are crucial. What do you do to stay active? walking? meditation? The brain needs love too! YOGA? running (i might vomit)? I encourage you to find something you love and commit to that even if it starts with 15 minutes every other day. I teach yoga and I mainly practice yoga. Sometimes I do something silly like Death by Burpees…never. again. If you like group classes check out Naptown Fitness for SWIFT, Yoga & CrossFit. COMMUNITY is major factor. It helps to be surrounded by like-minded peers.

Lastly – regimen. YOUR BODY IS A TEMPLE = treat it with respect. You must commit to the cause. Start simple. Find a few basic items and stick to it. It doesn’t have to be complicated. Before I scare you off with my daily routine, please note I started with washing and moisturizing twice a day. Then I added one more thing. And then one more. With time you’ll learn what does and doesn’t work for you, but it starts with trying.

Spilling the beans: I’ve become quite diligent and I wash my face every morning & night, followed by a toner, then I use Raw Sauce to help better absorb what I apply next – serum, eye cream, finally with moisturizer (one for day, another for night). The results were proof enough that I continued to follow this no matter how tired I was at night or how many glasses of wine I had consumed…impressively I have woken up with my face clean on nights I barely got my PJs on (AKA my bachelorette party). This took time + patience. I share my regimen with you because if I can do this, so can you. What works for me may not be right for you, but I hope it inspires you to create something of your own. I’m happier in my skin when I take the time to care of it, I hope you will find the same.

Top five products:

  1. Clarisonic – I use this EVERY DAY. I clean my brush weekly + replace my brush every four months. I swear by it.
  2. Cleanser – I keep at least two in my shower. What I use depends on what my skin needs at that time. I already shared Skinny Coconut Facial Oil but a product I highly recommend and have come back to over and over again is Peter Thomas Roth Anti-Aging Cleansing Gel.  I am prone to mild breakouts and sweat regularly. Works great with the Clarisonic.
  3. Toner – same as the cleansers, I have a few options. ALWAYS. I love Belif Witch Hazel Extract Toner because it doesn’t require cotton pads for applying and is a very CLEAN product. I’ll even apply some to my underarms after a shower because, why not?!
  4. I already listed the Raw Sauce above and it’s also been posted on my Instagram @ompurvi – check it out!
  5. Moisturizer – day + night. For day time, I highly recommend Farmacy Rise ‘N Shine Daily Moisture Lock and for night I love Sunday Riley Luna Sleeping Night Oil with Trans-retinoic Acid Ester. If you’re sensitive to sun or retinol this may not be for you. I use it a couple times a week and notice a difference in my skin (the price point is higher but all together worth it, IMO).

These are mostly clean products. I try my best to avoid parabens, sulfates & phthalates but it doesn’t always work. Also, more products are becoming cruelty free and vegan. Take the time to read the labels & research the brands. Get to know what you’re using and if it fits your lifestyle. I like Sephora and Eva Maison because I can take something back if I don’t like it. The reviews can be helpful and you have the opportunity to give your own feedback.

What’s to come next? serums. eye creams. hair care. body scrubs. soaks. make up + brushes. removers. You name it, I’ll share my two cents. Stay tuned kiddos.

Xp

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married life #lovinit