Confession: I am a makeup hoarder. I buy makeup and I keep it in a drawer, rarely throwing product away unless it’s completely used up. I’m guessing some of you do this too? For the longest time, I didn’t think twice about this habit. It’s nothing to be ashamed of, I told myself!

Why you shouldn’t use old, expired makeup

The reality is, makeup expires. And it’s not pretty when it does.

I mean, you don’t eat expired food, do you? I’m not talking about a couple days… I’m talking about months or even years old expired food. You probably wouldn’t even think of it. Expired food can make you sick, plain and simple. So why do we continue using expired makeup?!

Whether you realize it or not, the process of applying makeup can be less than sanitary, especially if you’re using your fingers to apply product and not washing your brushes properly (<< will do a post on this!). Over time, products can change in color and formula, lose their effectiveness, and become a hotspot for germs and bacteria. Ew!

Expiration dates for some common beauty products

Foundation – 6 months+. Foundation can last up to 2 years, but this is one you want to pay attention to, especially because you’re putting it on all over your face.

Lipstick – 2 years. Totally guilty of keeping lipsticks for longer than this time (I rarely use them up). It’s hard to say goodbye, but for sanitary purposes it’s a good idea to toss shades that are older than a couple years.

Mascara – 3-6 months. This one is usually safe if you consistently use the same tube, they usually won’t last longer than that time anyway. Over time, pumping the brush also pushes air into the tube, which will dry the mascara out.

Eyeliner – 3 months (liquid or gel formulas) to 2 years (pencil). 3 months is not a long time at all! Chances are you’ve used expired eyeliner before. You might think oh it’s NBD but considering how close to your eye you’re applying this product, you definitely want to avoid the risk of getting a gnarly eye infection (definitely do not share eyeliner!)

Powder makeup (bronzer, blush, eyeshadow) – 1-2 years. You get a bit of a pass with powder makeup – because it’s dry, it takes longer to go bad. Still, it’s not a bad idea to keep track of dates and make sure you avoid stockpiling older product.

If you’re not keeping track of your makeup expiration dates, you should! Try keeping a list or writing down when you bought a product on the package itself. When I did an assessment of my makeup, I was shocked to find that more than half of it was expired! I was keeping around old foundations and shades of lipsticks that I didn’t want to throw away because “you never know when you might want to use them!” But rather than keeping a stash of “just in case” makeup, I’m trying to streamline my makeup drawer so it contains just the essentials.

Do you keep track of your makeup expiration dates? How do you organize your beauty products?

xx, Amy

Venice Vibes

Venice Vibes | by The Luxi Look

Venice is one of my favorite neighborhoods to hang out in LA… I love the relaxed, laid back vibes and how close the neighborhood is to the ocean. I’m not the only one, Venice is one of the most expensive neighborhoods in all of LA! It’s easy to see why this beach side community is so desirable to live in. It’s an eclectic mix of surfers and beach lovers, hippies, techies, and entrepreneurs with an incredible food, music, and art scene.

As much as I love hanging out in Venice, it also happens to be one of my favorite neighborhoods to shoot in. Aside from the usual suspects (the boardwalk, Abbot Kinney), I love heading off the main roads and into the neighborhoods. Each street is unique and you never know what hidden gem is around the corner!

Venice Vibes | by The Luxi Look

Venice Vibes | by The Luxi Look

Venice Vibes | by The Luxi Look

These photos were taken wandering off Abbot Kinney Boulevard. It’s amazing how you go from the busiest street to a quiet tropical oasis in minutes. The houses in Venice have so much character, if you’re ever in the neighborhood take some time to wander and get lost.

See full outfit details below : ). Jumpsuit is from Haute and Borrowed, but I linked similar styles below. I’m thinking of doing a neighborhood guide to Venice – lmk if you guys want to see!

xx, Amy

jumpsuit: similar | necklace: sticks + stones | sunnies: pared | bag: similar

Venice Vibes | by The Luxi Look

Venice Vibes | by The Luxi Look

Venice Vibes | by The Luxi Look
Venice Vibes | by The Luxi Look

This weekend marks three years since I moved to Los Angeles! Growing up and going to school in the Midwest, it never occurred to me that I would end up on the west coast. Moving out here for a new job and a relatively new relationship required a huge leap of faith in myself and the unknown, something that is very hard for me to do. But if there’s anything I’ve learned from this experience living in LA, which has become one of the most important and best decisions I’ve made so far, it’s the importance of learning to trust your gut and intuition.

Three Years Living in LA | by The Luxi Look

Three Years Living in LA | by The Luxi Look

Three Years Living in LA | by The Luxi Look

Building a life and living in a new city is never easy, and adjusting to living in LA was difficult, to say the least. I missed my family and friends, a city that I had grown to love, and routine that felt familiar and comfortable. Making new friends in a new city, learning the ins and outs of a new industry, and adjusting to LA traffic took time and a lot of concerted effort. But three years later, I have a hard time imagining myself living anywhere else. I’d be lying if I said I didn’t love the lifestyle of Southern California – I love the slower pace, emphasis on wellness, and creativity of Los Angeles. Every sunset or glance up at palm trees reminds me how lucky I am to call this place home. I truly do wake up every morning feeling grateful for the life I have and the opportunities I’ve been presented.

Trust your gut, follow your heart, you are where you’re supposed to be. We hear it all the time. It’s easy to discount our instinct, but it turns out the saying “trust your gut” has actual roots in science. Our stomachs are filled with neurotransmitters, so many in fact that it is actually called our second brain. Those butterflies you’re feeling in your stomach? They shouldn’t be ignored. You know that feeling when you’re taking a multiple choice test and you’re stuck between two answers? Usually, the answer you’re inclined to choose first is the right one. Isn’t it funny how that works? I’ve always been more logic driven and rational, but trusting my instinct and going with my intuition has been one of the biggest lessons I’ve learned as I get older – I’ve found that it’s usually right and onto something.

Three Years Living in LA | by The Luxi Look

Three Years Living in LA | by The Luxi Look

Three Years Living in LA | by The Luxi Look

Three Years Living in LA | by The Luxi Look

When’s the last time your trusted your gut on something? Are you more the type of person that lays out all of the facts before making a decision, or do you tend to trust your instinct?

xx, Amy

dress: vicisimilar | bag: similar | hat: lack of color | shoes: similar

All too often, we hear about the importance of taking vitamins. But with most things in life, consistency is key. I can’t even begin to tell you how many half full bottles of different vitamins and minerals are laying around my apartment. Many of which are probably way past their expiration date. It’s too easy to read an article about some hot new supplement you need to take, and thanks to one-click shopping and my Prime membership, get a package on my doorstep in two days.

Typically, what ends up happening is this: I get excited, take previously mentioned supplement for a week, and then forget about it. With that sort of behavior, it’s no wonder I never really saw any benefits from most of the vitamins I was taking! However, recently I tried Care/of, a new service designed to help make taking your vitamins fun and easy and couldn’t wait to share with you guys.

[ Full disclosure, this post is not sponsored – Care/of was kind enough to offer and send me a month of vitamins to try, but I really wanted to share my experience with you guys! ]

A New Way of Taking Vitamins with Care/of | by The Luxi Look

Why should you take vitamins?

First, let’s talk about supplements. There’s a bit of debate as to whether or not we need to be taking supplements at all. While I agree that it’s probably best to get our vitamins and minerals in their natural form through food, the truth is most of us don’t get the right amount of everything in our daily diets. Vegans and vegetarians especially. Once you start cutting out certain food groups, it becomes easier to be deficient in certain essential nutrients if you’re not careful. Even if you’re eating a balanced diet, you may still benefit from taking supplements.

Although health and wellness is something I’m very passionate about, I am fully aware that I’m not a doctor. SO – be sure to talk to one or get their advice before starting a supplement regime! With that said, if you are interested in trying vitamins, you may want to consider a personalized approach by the way of Care/of.

What makes Care/of different?

Care/of asks you questions about your lifestyle, diet, and personal needs in order to determine what supplements may be beneficial to you. They offer a variety of vitamins, minerals, herbs, probiotics, and more. The personalized approach helps you take only the supplements you need, with a wide range of benefits. A lot of the science behind supplements is debatable. Although, Care/of does the work in assembling the research and traditional uses behind all of the supplements available, so you can have the most accurate assessment of the products and read the evidence first hand for yourself.

In addition, Care/of takes the mess and fuss out taking your daily vitamins. They the whole process fun and easy. You get deliveries of a month’s worth of vitamins at a time that come in pre-portioned daily packages. So you really have no excuse to skip your vitamins.

A New Way of Taking Vitamins with Care/of | by The Luxi Look

What was in my pack?

Based on my personal assessment, Care/of created a recommend pack of 5 different vitamins. You can also add or subtract other supplements based on your personal needs and preferences (packs range from 2-14 pills/day). Here’s what came in my recommended daily vitamin pack:

Digestive enzymes – although I was taking a daily probiotic before anyway, I’m glad I get one in my Care/of package as well. These help keep your gut healthy and happy and help tremendously with digestion and bowel movements. A healthy digestive system is so important for ridding your body of toxins!

Ashwagandha (try saying that 3 times fast!) – this was a new to me and exciting addition to my pack. Ashwagandha is an Ayurvedic herb that is meant to support a healthy stress response. Although I’d like to think that I’m pretty chill, the truth is anxiety and stress can get the best of me at times. Ashwagandha is also known as “Indian Gingseng” and has been used for thousands of years in traditional Indian medicine.

Rhodiola – another herb used to help combat stress and fatigue. Apparently I said I was feeling burned out?! Anyway, this is a traditional Chinese herb that has been shown to relieve stress and promote feelings of well being.

I grew up taking traditional Eastern medicine, so Ayurvedic herbs don’t phase me. If you’re less sure about these types of supplements, you can totally pass on them!

These two recommended vitamins are much more established in the states.

Vitamin D – even though I live in Southern California, I don’t always get enough sun. Did you know a majority of Americans aren’t getting enough Vitamin D? Vitamin D is essential for strong and healthy bones!

Vitamin C – supports your immune system!

A New Way of Taking Vitamins with Care/of | by The Luxi Look

All of this comes to $34/month (just a little over $1 a day). The daily packages are pre-portioned and come in these adorable little pouches. The pouches are personalized with your name on them and are so easy to throw in your bag and go. I’ve been keeping a couple in my desk at the office in case I forget to grab a pack on my way out in the morning (depending on whether or not I’ve had coffee, I can be very forgetful!).

Also, V IMPORTANT tip. Always take your vitamins with a meal. I’ve made the mistake of downing 5 pills in the morning before ingesting any food. It leaves me feeling nauseous and queasy.

Overall, I’ve really enjoyed my experience with Care/of. I love the convenience of having pre-portioned packages that are easy to carry around with you and dispose of afterwards. Also, I love that I can customize the packets easily.  I can ensure that I am getting the nutrients need for my body.

If you’re interested in trying, Care/of kindly offers a discount code for my readers – use LUXILOOK50 at checkout for 50% off your first month of vitamins.

Would love to hear with you guys think!!

xx, Amy

Mondays can be a reaaaal bitch. Don’t get me wrong, I love starting the week feeling refreshed and ready to go. New week, new goals – am I right? However, with those new goals comes a laundry list of things to do. Raise your hand if you’re as obsessed with making lists as I am. Now raise your hand if you struggle with getting everything on said list done. If you’re still a little groggy from the weekend, it can be hard as hell to motivate yourself to even begin to tackle your to-do list. It’s a seriously daunting task!

How to Tackle Your To-Do List | by The Luxi Look

 

Here are the best ways to tackle your to-do list to have the most productive week ever.

Time block. This is probably one of the best productivity tools I’ve discovered. I am the biggest fan of time blocking. It really forces you to focus on the task at hand and nothing else. Short bursts of effort work well for me. 100% concentration for 20-30 min chunks, and then a 5-minute break. Depending on how I’m feeling, I’ll work for longer or shorter periods of time, and adjust my breaks accordingly. With that said, time blocking works best if you’re not being distracted by anything else.

Which leads me to my second tip…

Turn off social media. Nothing kills productivity faster than checking your phone or social media. If you’re serious about getting things done, turn your phone on airplane mode. Use a website blocker or browser extension to prevent yourself from using social media or browsing the web.

Do the hardest task first. Who’s guilty of doing the easiest tasks first, checking them off our list, and then getting stumped by the harder stuff after? If you do the challenging stuff first, the rest of your tasks will be completed in a breeze! This might be a bit of a personal preference, but I always like to get the tough stuff out of the way first.

Set realistic expectations. What does your to-do list look like? Be honest with yourself – is it full of little tasks and errands that you can get done quickly (laundry, cleaning, running to the drugstore, etc.) or is it more substantial? Maybe you’re studying for a big exam or applying for jobs or school. These tasks take time and a lot of concerted effort – don’t be upset or disappointed if you can’t get it all done in one go.

Depending on how ambitious you’re feeling, try to set one to three tasks a day that you HAVE to get done. Start small and work your way up. For example – some days, I make my main tasks 1. working out, 2. writing a new blog post, and 3. meditating for 10 minutes. Other days, it can be cleaning for 15 minutes and reading 20 pages of a book. It changes every day. Point being, mix it up and keep it spicy (can a to-do list be spicy?).

Some of the things on my to-do list this week? Work on my content calendar for the next month (any posts you’re dying to see?), visit the flea market for some home decor, organize my closet, and possiblyyy a trip to Ikea if I’m feeling REALLY ambitious.

How to Tackle Your To-Do List | by The Luxi Look

How to Tackle Your To-Do List | by The Luxi Look

Speaking of organizing my closet – do you remember this dress from Arrive Clothing? I am so obsessed with everything in the collection, I had to scoop up another piece to add to my closet. This romper is everything I want in a summer outfit – floral, ruffles, and cut out details. And yes, I am still following my rule of getting rid of a piece when I get buy something new.

Check out some of my favorite Arrive pieces below (love how they make so many different pieces with the same print!). I’m off to catch up on Game of Thrones xx

romper: arrive | bag: gucci | sunnies: ray-ban | shoes: similar

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