a review of an organic, all natural sunless tanner

My family lives on the lake so I spent my summers in the water swimming, tanning, on the boat, or on the beach collecting glass, interesting rocks, and even the occasional fossil. Sometimes a friend and I would lay out on the dock or even put the trampoline in the lake and sunbathe from there.
Summertime meant my skin was always dark tan and my (normally dark brown) hair always streaked with natural highlights that came from the hours spent in the sun.
The beginning of sophomore year in high school my skin was dark from lifeguarding all summer. I distinctly remember one day during Honor Pass while some friends and I sat at a table in the common area, an elderly looking woman lurked nearby. She worked in the school and had apparently been considering what to say to us for a few moments before she quietly approached our table and timidly told us that we shouldn’t tan so much or else we would end up looking like her. She said she had a nice tan all her life because she thought it looked good, but said, “this is the result” (as she touched her wrinkled skin). She asked us to guess her age and when none of us bit, she informed us she wasn’t even 50 yet. I may have thought the lady was weird for butting in on our conversation like that, but I was shocked by what she said.
The next summer I didn’t go back to working at the pool, partly because I didn’t want to end up like that lady at school.
 My mom always warned me about wrinkles from the sun too, but I always thought that was just a thing moms say to suck the fun out of life. Lol
Many of us now personally know of the (other) dark side of sunbathing. The worries of melanoma personally infiltrated my life when my grandpa was diagnosed a few years back. He is doing well, but still fighting. 
Then this year I had a mole removed because the doctor found a concerning mole and I also had to have  the skin around it removed after they tested the skin around the mole and found abnormal cells. The unsightly scar I now sport on my stomach is a small price to pay compared to other potential consequences of sun exposure.
A year after the wrinkled woman told my friends and I to stop tanning, I listened. I did at home spray tans to keep a little color in my life, but eventually stopped that too because the chemicals smelled so harsh. 

When Swell Skin reached out to me and asked me to try and review their sunless tanner I hesitated until I saw their promise that it is organic and natural! They also have hair and skin vitamins that I totally want to try when I’m done breastfeeding! 

Besides being organic and natural, the Swell Skin sunless tanner (A Shore Thing) gives a great olive colored tan that is a far cry from the orangey colored spray tans that were so popular a few years back. It looks, smells, and feels natural and is a great harmless alternative to your run of the mill sunless tanner!

At first it’s a slime monster green color and smells a tiny bit like alge, but I really didn’t mind it. It reminded me of an all-natural spa treatment. 
You can order yours here: Swell Life Beauty and see what you think! 

If you or someone you know still goes crazy tanning in the summer I urge you to consider the cosmetic and health issues associated with suntanning. Please talk to girls, especially younger girls, who likely don’t understand the risks they’re taking by getting that dark tan each summer. And hey,  what’s the worst that could happen if you say something? Worst case scenario they think you’re crazy and old. But you could actually have a positive impact on someone later like the lady at school who warned me. 
So do your future self a favor and keep sporting those pasty legs, unless of course you grab A Shore Thing

a few of my favorite things: more inexpensive stocking stuffer ideas for her


Mary Kay Lash Intensity Mascara. Outfit details will be at the bottom of the post.

Hi everyone! Today I wanted to show you some of my favorite beauty products that I have in my vanity that will forever be in my skincare/makeup routine. I honestly think everyone needs these things.

To begin, I HAVE to tell you about the Mary Kay Lash Intensity Mascara I’ve been using on and off since high school. It’s a little more expensive than some drugstore mascara ($18), but it’s definitely worth it, especially since the tube is HUGE compared with other mascaras so you’re getting your $$ worth in volume too.

The reason I said I use this on and off is that I like to try new things when my old makeup runs out, but this mascara will always be my favorite and I’m for sure going to stick with this brand now because I think I’ve tried enough mascara now to be sure my MK Lash Intensity is the one

Mary Kay has other great products too and I adore their lipstick line. So go check that out now! If you order with this link you’ll be ordering through a super sweet old friend of mine named Shanna. She’s the sweetest girl, a loyal friend, and a great wife and mommy! You’ll love her! And again, I am not getting paid or rewarded for this in any way, I just really love their mascara. 🙂

Another makeup brand that I’m a little obsessed with is YSL, but really I just love their lipstick! It is so soothing, moisturizing, and smells amazing! If you’ve never picked some up, check it out here and grab a few for you and as stocking stuffers for the gal pals in your life. How can you go wrong with a lipstick that guarantees to moisturize your lips? There’s nothing worse than drugstore lipstick that dries out your lips…. then you’re buying more chapstick… so really, you’re saving money by getting a quality lipstick like YSL. 😉

I personally like the color in Rose Sahararienne (and asked for it for Christmas), but literally any of them would be amazing on any of us!

This Conair True Glow Cleaning Skin Beauty Treatment is something I’ve been using for almost a year now and I still recommend it. It uses little movements to loosen and brush out dead skin cells, dirt, and bacteria in the pores that cause zits and blackheads. It always leaves my skin looking and feeling radiant. The other thing it does that I like is that it makes my pores less noticeable by cleaning them out. If you look in the mirror really close you’ll probably notice tons of blackheads that you didn’t even know you had and this helps clear those right up.

I like to use this right after a shower (or sometimes while I’m taking a bath) so the steam helps to open up my pores, but they also make a facial steamer that’s just $25.

The reason I recommend this Conair cleansing treatment above other brands is that I own it, it’s more cost effective than the Clairisonic brand, and it works wonders on my skin! I actually have two of these, one is for facials and the other to get rid of dead skin on your feet and I use them both often.


This is an old palette from UIta, but I found a similar one by Makeup Revolution here.

It’s funny– I never used to wear eyeshadow until I realized I could apply it like watercolor! Why? Because I was always annoyed with the “fall” from the eyeshadow and if you get your brush a little wet, you avoid that all together! See a tutorial here.


Here’s a closeup of the facial tool from Conair.

Shirt: Make Me Chic, sold out, but they have TONS of other cute + inexpensive styles | Jeans: American Eagle

Well, that’s all I have for you, but be sure to check out the links and see what you think! But seriously, give these to the girls on your list and they will be thrilled!!!!



Sadly, nothing in this post was sponsored, but as always all thoughts and opinions are def. my own! 😉

Perfect Gifts Sale! Save 30% on items in the Gift Shop at MakeMeChic.com with code GIFT30. Ends 12/26

how to achieve your hair goals

Before & After:


Left: before with my normal hair (curled so it’s a realistic before and after) | Right: after (wearing 24″ Irresistible Me extensions in Light Brown from the Silky Touch line)

Why to Wear Extensions:

My #hairgoals have always been to achieve a beautiful, long, thick head of hair that looks good basically no matter what. If you’re one of those girls with perfectly thick hair, you should still keep reading, but I hate you. No, just kidding, but I may be slightly jealous of your hair. If your hair is thin like mine you know how annoying it is to try to do a hairstyle (like a braid) that looks so cute on some girls only to find out that it looks TERRIBLE on your hair.


Enter Irresistible Me natural hair extensions. These clip ins give me a good hair day in minutes because they add so much length and volume to my hair! Also, they blend really well because there are TONS of colors in each weft, mimicking my current/natural hair color. 

If you were  already blessed with thick locks, I still recommend the Irresistible Me extensions because they can give you that extra length you’re looking for on days when you want to switch things up a bit. Plus, I personally like how they bump out the hair a little and give more volume at the roots.

How to Put In and Style Irresistible Me Extensions:

 Previous Experiences with Extensions:

Back in 2011 when I was a first year grad student I was tired of my usual hair style and wanted to experiment with my look without making a huge change I would regret. My sister and I (who both have thin hair) spent hours researching extensions, finding the best deals, and learning how to sew the “permanent” kind into our hair ourselves. I got pretty good at it and put in a few girls’ extensions, including my own. To be honest, I think they looked great so I’m not dissing the kind that you leave in…… but sleeping in extensions can be annoying and even painful so I had to take them out after about a month.

Over the years I’ve gone through 2 or 3 sets of clip ins. I like clip in extensions best because I want to be able to take them out to sleep or to not wear them if I don’t want to. I also like being able to flip the weft upside down if I’m doing a topknot or a high pony.

Why Irresistible Me?:

I am pleasantly surprised by how nice the Irresistible Me clips and wefts are! They include remy hair (meaning virgin hair with the hair shafts all going in the right direction) so they don’t tangle like some of my old extensions did. They are comfortable and secure in my hair and look amazingly natural. Comfort and quality are always important to me, especially when it’s something as significant as my hair!

I give the Irresistible Me Silky Touch Extensions a 10/10! They are by FAR the best extensions I’ve ever owned! Also, they are on sale for up to 50% off right now and their prices are unheard of for this quality so snag them while you can!!!



This post is sponsored by Irresistible Me, all thoughts and opinions are my own.

what your mother never told you about EYESHADOW  

I recently discovered that basically every eyeshadow gets better with… water! 💦 How I never realized this before is beyond me. Most palettes even look like watercolor palettes! 💁🏻 
 I started mixing the color with water every time I wear eyeshadow and it goes on better and eliminated that nasty under eye cleanup. Genius! 
One of my college friends always had the coolest eyeshadow — colors that magically faded into another color and then somehow also matched her outfits. I always admired her talent, but didn’t even try to attempt anything special until earlier this year after Wolfie was born. 
Becoming a mom meant that I slept less than I did in college and I was feeling really icky with such dark shadows under my eyes. Then one day I thought it might help distract from the ugly effects of no sleep to add shadow above too (lol). So I learned enough to get by with a smoky eye every now and then. 
Fast forward to about a month ago, I read about mixing water with the eyeshadow in a mag (probably instyle) so I tried it and it’s a total game changer! The colors are easily intensified or muted, you can mix them if you want, and (like I said) it’s a lot less messy!
Have you tried this before?!