Coming clean with Botanics

Plants are powerful. Now that I’ve tackled my hair woes, (see previous post) I’ve moved on to concour my temperamental skin with the help of Botanics. Since I have combination skin, I’m always fighting breakouts along my chin and T-zone. Over the years, (even with sunscreen every day) I’ve dealt with sensitivity and blotchiness that is hard to tame. With that being said, I’ve gone through many a dermatologist and many skin care products in my day, but nothing has been nearly as effective, gentle, and affordable as this line. Now at Target, they’re all under $10 and I’m happy to have found something that works that’s affordable.

I’ve been using Botanics now for 2 weeks, and I’m already seeing clearer, calmer skin. Hyper pigmentation has reduced significantly to where my face is one tone with very little redness. I’m even using just a bb cream, no foundation or cover up necessary anymore. So here’s what I do:

  1. Wash morning and night with the Shine Away Mattifying Mousse. Willowbark is naturally high in salicylic acid so it removes oil and clarifies skin
  2. Pat on the Shine Away Toner (or with cotton pad) to remove impurities and tighten pores
  3. Apply the Shine Away Day Cream with SPF 15 all over face. You don’t need much, it’s light weight and gentle and my skin is completely hydrated and not greasy.

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  • Twice a week (at night) I use the Shine Away Clay Mask to draw out all the gunk and impurities my skin may absorb. Leave on for about 10 minutes and your skin will feel extra clean before washing with cleanser.
  • Twice a week (at night) I use the Invigorating Face Scrub that gently sloughs off dead skin. (Don’t rub too hard, I usually do this on the days I don’t use the mask.)
  • 3-4 times a week (at night) I apply the Shine Away Gel Cream prior to moisturizing which acts to clarify and seal in all the work I just did. My skin actually feels tighter each time I use it!

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And there you have my effective and affordable skincare routine using the #PowerofPlants. You can find Botanics and all of their many products at Target or with the links provided.

What I use: Shine Away Collection

Other skin types:

Anti Aging Collection

Brightening Collection

Organics Line

*Thank you Botanics for sponsoring this post, all opinions are my own.

Getting Personal #FunctionofBeauty

Let’s get personal shall we? Having gone through a lot shampoo bottles and brands over the years (mainly all from drugstores and the occasional splurge at Sephora) I think I’ve finally found something that actually works for my hair type, which is a little troublesome: Oily, sometimes itchy and flaky, thick, and colored. Why hasn’t Head and Shoulders, Pantene, or OGX done the trick? It’s because they’re not custom. They may try to treat one of the problems, but not all. Or they’re filled with junk and chemicals that aren’t good for you nor the water system.

Enter Function of Beauty. Fill out a fun and easy hair survey based on your needs via their website, pick a delicious scent (I chose Passion Fruit Hibiscus) and their chemists will mix a concoction up for you and pop it in the mail. What’s more is that I can’t stand all the junk such as Parabens and Phthalates, and Function of Beauty is free of all that. No GMO’s allowed.

Free shipping and $26 later, I shortly received 2 bottles of my new custom hair care with my name on the bottles. They’re just for me, myself, and my type of hair :D

I’ve been using my new shampoo and conditioner for about 3 weeks now and my hair seems softer, shinier (not to be mistaken for oily), and my scalp seems calmer and less irritated. Plus, every time I wash my color treated hair, I smell like passion fruit which I love.

Let me know if you decide to mix your own via Function of Beauty because I definitely want to hear your thoughts. You can save $5 when you click the link. Until then, wishing you all happy hair days from here on out :D

*Thank you to Function of Beauty for this post. All opinions are my own.*

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Function of Beauty Click here to save $5 off your purchase

Grazie, M.Gemi

Sometimes I forget that I’m one part Shoes, one part Sashimi, so this post makes complete sense as I am happily a part of one of the most coveted luxury brands of shoes to hit the market: M.Gemi. As part of their Client Advisory Board I get to give you all some special treats along the way.

If you’re not familiar with their handcrafted Italian shoes, I think you soon will be because they’ve had some beautiful pieces grace bloggers and stylists everywhere. They were one of the first to bring The Lace Up flat onto the market as well as the Brogue and The Loafer that women have been wearing nonstop this year. They’ve completely reinvented the way we shop for splurges like these: online, free shipping, free returns. What’s more to love? Well, I’ll tell ya.

For those new to M.Gemi use my code “Lauren705” for $40 off your purchase, it never expires and you’ll get a great deal for they almost never have sales!

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Grazie, M.Gemi
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The Tuta Flat (Photo by @justferriss)
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@SincerelyJules wearing The Brezza

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Blogger @SomethingNavy wearing the Mille flats
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@ThatGirlGick wearing the Altezza Boot
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@Fashionedchicstyling wearing the Metallic pump

So there you have some of my favorite shoes worn by some of my favorite Instagram accounts :D I’m pretty happy to be a part of the M.Gemi Advisory Board and also be able to give you some cool deals along the way. Happy Shopping!

Code: “Lauren705” for $40 off your next pair

 

#OnTheTable with Cate & Chloe

Good morning everyone, if you’ve been following me on Instagram I’m currently back in Los Angeles styling a commercial shoot! However, that has not stopped me from sharing this overdue post dedicated to my love for subscription boxes. Why? Because getting a box full of little surprises in the mail every month is more exciting than opening regular mail :D There’s Birchbox for the beauty and grooming gurus, Rocksbox for jewelry, Loot Crate for comic geeks, and then there is Cate & Chloe. Cate & Chloe is a little different in the accessories game, because now you get to customize your own box. Everyone’s style and taste is different, so why should you receive the exact same box as someone else?

Cate & Chloe sent me their September VIP Box full of goodies, 2 of them are jewelry pieces that I have been wearing all week. The other was a total surprise, a set of makeup brushes rolled into a nice neat bow. I was thrilled because 1: I need a new brush set. And 2: Timing was perfect, I packed them for my work trip to LA this weekend and I’m powdering my face as we speak :D

Like good surprises? Pick your plan at Cate & Chloe.com, select your style, and lastly sit back and let their team build your box for you. You’ll receive your box in the mail and I’m sure you’ll be excited to open it!

As a thank you to my readers, I give you my special promo code SHOESANDSASHIMI25 for 25% off when you sign up, valid until November 30th. And finally, for the month of October, 15% of all proceeds will be donated to the American Breast Cancer Society!

Thank you for reading and keeping up with me. For daily adventures, be sure to follow on Instagram for real time photos :)

Lauren

Packaging is key, love their boxes.
Packaging is key, love their boxes.
Surprise 1: Wrap bracelet with a buckle and gold accents.
Surprise 1: Wrap bracelet with a buckle and gold accents.
Surprise 2: a dainty layer necklace.
Surprise 2: a dainty layer necklace.
Unraveled surprise 3: Full set of makeup brushes
Unraveled surprise 3: Full set of makeup brushes
I tend to use these the most, especially the brow comb.
I tend to use these the most, especially the brow comb.

Special thanks to Cate & Chloe for this post

Promo code: Shoesandsashimi25 for 25% off sign up

Take Me Away to Half Moon Bay

Another weekend well spent, this time in beautiful Half Moon Bay. If you’ve been following me on Instagram, you’ve probably see all the real time pictures of our sea side adventures. If not, be sure to follow @Shoes_and_Sashimi to keep up! The weather was perfect, the sky was clear, the water was cool, and we thoroughly enjoyed exploring the downtown area of Half Moon Bay itself with all the quaint little cafes and trinket shops. Boo was sure popular at the Ritz Carlton, we met many nice people on the grounds with their pups too. If you’re in the area, check out this little beach town and relax. It’s the perfect staycation, if you ask me :)

Thanks for reading. And as always have a wonderful week.

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Boo and I like to color coordinate now. #neutrals
Lox Bagel at The Press just before getting to Half Moon Bay. Can you spot Boo? Professional photobombed he is.
Lox Bagel at The Press just before getting to Half Moon Bay. Can you spot Boo? Professional photobomber he is.
Make your own bath salts at Oddyssea. This shop has a pirate ship in the back :D Very cool shop, do stop by if you're in the area.
Make your own bath salts at Oddyssea. This shop has a pirate ship in the back :D Very cool shop, do stop by if you’re in the area.
Downtown Half Moon Bay
Pink walls in downtown Half Moon Bay

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Roaming the Ritz on our walk from the beach.
Roaming the Ritz on our walk to the beach.
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Life is the bubbles! - Sebastian
Life is the bubbles! – Sebastian
View from the Ritz Carlton. No Filter.
View from the Ritz Carlton. No Filter.

What I Wore:

Top: Greylin Collection

Sunnies: Le Specs

Denim: J Brand

Sandals: Dolce Vita

Where we Went:

The Ritz Carlton Half Moon Bay

Brunch: The Press

Oddyssea

Wine Country

People are always shocked when I say that I’ve never really experienced Napa Valley, simply because as an adult I’ve been in Southern California the majority of the time. My parents go often, either for themselves or to entertain guests so I end up living and eating vicariously through them. Bouchon, The French Laundry, Ad Hoc…It seems like everyone and their cousins have been except for me. So to my surprise last Sunday after being bed ridden with what seemed like the plague, the beau decided to pack me in the car and drive on up to Napa for the day. Sweet, right?

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Trip highlights:

Perusing all the vendors at Oxbow Public Market. There’s just so much going on and so many wonderful smells of all kinds of cuisines permeating the place. It’s overwhelming, but in a tasty sensory overload kind of way.

Making a pit stop at Vallarta Market to try their famed burrito. Who goes to Calistoga for a burrito? We did…and it was divine….it’s hidden in this tiny little Mexican grocery store, luckily you can get directions to such establishment here: 1473 Lincoln Street, Calistoga, CA

Going to Bouchon Bakery to pick up gingerbread muffins for Mama and Papa. It’s a bustling little place that I call bread heaven: 6528 Washington Street, Yountville, CA 94599

Ending our trip with a surprise dinner reservation at Ad Hoc by Thomas Keller. Each night is a different prefix menu and I’m still full just thinking about our meal. In all honesty, the Cream of Mushroom Soup was my favorite, served with a gruyere cheese crostini. The main dish was Veal Scallopini served on whipped gold potatoes and broccolini romanesco. And finally for dessert, Vanilla Ice Cream Sundaes with butterscotch, pecans, and strawberry sauce. Needless to say, I am back at the gym and hot yoga to work all of this off!

Model Behavior at The Model Bakery in Napa. How cool is their planter box sign? Little succulents make up their signage. http://www.themodelbakery.com
Model Behavior at The Model Bakery in Napa. How cool is their planter box sign? Little succulents make up their signage. http://www.themodelbakery.com
Had to try Model Bakery's world famous English Muffins. You'll never settle for store bought packaged english muffins again.
Had to try Model Bakery’s world famous English Muffins. You’ll never settle for store bought packaged english muffins again.
The Oxbow Wine and Cheese Merchants are inside the public market in Napa. I'm a big cheese fan, so of course we had to try their charcuterie and delectable cheese spread. The ideal lunch, really.
The Oxbow Wine and Cheese Merchants are inside the public market in Napa. I’m a big cheese fan, so of course we had to try their charcuterie and delectable cheese spread. The ideal lunch, really.
Pit stop to take in the view at Robert Mondavi Winery. Beautiful estate, and by this time we got there as the sun was about to set.
Pit stop to take in the view at Robert Mondavi Winery. Beautiful estate, and by this time we got there as the sun was about to set.
I love this view. It was very cold, but luckily my Lovers + Friends Moto Jacket kept me warm. Check out those endless rows of grapevines!
I love this view. It was very cold, but luckily my Lovers + Friends Moto Jacket kept me warm. Check out those endless rows of grapevines!
I was surprised by a wonderful dinner reservation at Thomas Keller's famed Ad Hoc. Every night is a different prefix menu, I think I'm still full from it all. Just perfect.
I was surprised by a wonderful dinner reservation at Thomas Keller’s famed Ad Hoc. Every night is a different prefix menu, I think I’m still full from it all. Just perfect.

>>>The Model Bakery<<<

>>>Thomas Keller<<<

What I wore: Lovers + Friends Babe Moto Jacket

 

It’s Beginning to Look A Lot Like Christmas

It’s the most wonderful time of the year! That means wearing my favorite plaid flannel like this one, made by Rails LA. Tis the season after all. http://www.railsclothing.com

Keeping warm in my Rails LA flannel on a wet day in downtown's Little Tokyo Plaza.
Keeping warm in my Rails LA flannel on a wet day in downtown’s Little Tokyo Plaza.
Little Tokyo Plaza
Little Tokyo Plaza, the lanterns are always so pretty here.
Walk it Out
Walking rather swiftly to lunch…eating is my favorite part of the day :)
#Selfie
#Selfie: We spotted this Dad and his two little boys all bundled up taking a selfie in the courtyard. And if you look closely, they’re eating one of my favorite types of street food, takoyaki (Octopus rolled into a tiny ball covered in a flour based dough and drizzled with sweet sauce)
Just passing through
Just passing through…this little clothing stand is home to Japangeles, a street wear company that bridges Japanese Culture and LA lifestyle into each of their designs.
Lunch: Shin Sen Gumi Ramen for a post shoot meal.
Lunch: Shin Sen Gumi Ramen for a post shoot meal. I can’t rave about this place enough, it’s one of my favorite places to park myself for a little bit and slurp some seriously rich ramen broth. Fun fact: Shin-Sen-Gumi was a name taken from a famous Samurai Clan whose commitment for excellence was of utmost importance to the nation during Japan’s Civil War. That commitment to serving excellent food shows every time I come to eat here.