September Favs

I love beauty products and will try anything at least once as long as it has  good reviews. Good reviews are always my weakness. If you get enough people to like it, than that means I am trying it! There has been plenty of times where I’ve tried things that just weren’t meant for me, but in contrary, I have also discovered a lot of great products with this system I have going for myself. Everyone has their own preferences, so I say “try” purposefully because just because it worked for you, doesn’t mean it will necessarily work for the next person. We all have different skin types and certain shades of make up look better depending on skin tone. In my opinion, it doesn’t hurt to try. I like to know that I can eliminate certain products from my wish-lists!

cover2

For the month of 
September, I have picked my 
top 7 beauty products! 

picc

I have faithfully used these 7 products for months now and plan on keeping them until of course I discover my next favorite.  I give these products nothing less than 4.5 stars out of a 5 star scale. I wouldn’t call them perfection but pretty damn close.

The Natasha Denona Eyeshadow Star Palette is a palette with 18 shades. With this palette   , it easily creates gorgeous eye looks. It includes four Crystal Eyeshadows, nine Creamy Mattes, three Metallic, and two Duo-Chromes with silky-soft textures. These shadows are long-lasting and extremely buildable and blendable. The palette is on the pricey side, BUT, the pigmentation of each shade is to die for.

Natasha Deanna’s Sculpt and Glow is the perfect touch for any makeup look. It is a six-piece, highlighting and contouring palette to sweep on subtle contours. The highlighting and contouring creams are formulated with properties that support anti-aging, are high in antioxidants, and contain sunflower seed and jojoba to hydrate skin. Designed to subtly contour and highlight facial features without making them appear too sharp or subtle, this palette leaves your complexion with a natural looking glow.

blur palette

The Kat Von D Lock It Foundation is my daily go to lately. It has a nice finish and blends quickly. It is high-pigmented, provides full-coverage with a matte finish. Did I mention that it lasts 24-hours. With my experience with it, I usually touch up one time throughout the day because I tend to get oily in my T zone. In addition, for those who are interested in the ingredients, this foundation has ZERO: paragons, sulfates, and phthalates.

My Lash Boost that I purchased a few months ago has been heaven sent. It is a nightly eyelash conditioning serum that improves the appearance of lash volume and length within weeks. To anyone trying to grow out their lashes, this baby is amazing. My bottom lashes were basically nonexistent. Three weeks after using this product, I actually could see my bottom lashes. (be sure to check back to see my results from this lash serum). cover

Fiori by Vince Camuto is one of my daily wears lately. I fell in love with bottle first. Thank god it smelled great. This fragrance is a summer scent. Fiori, means “Flowers” in Italian and because it’s a fresh, light and feminine scent, it’s name is perfect. It smells like it sounds. It has top notes of luscious pink grapefruit and ripened white nectarine which provides a beautiful, purifying backdrop for base notes of rich sandalwood and creamy blonde cedar wood.

Face masks mean everything to me. Recently, I purchased Sand & Sky and this will be added to my skin regiment. It is an Australian botanical infused pink clay mask that that instantly detoxes, tightens pores, invigorates dull complexions and instantly boost radiance. The instructions say to use 2-3 times a week if you have oily to combination skin, or 1-2 times weekly if you have dry or sensitive skin. 

Becca’s collaboration palette with Chrissy Teigen has become my everyday wear. If you are trying to achieve a great summer glow, this palette is for you! Although summer is almost over, I will probably still use it into part of the fall, until I start craving my plum like colors. This palette help you create that effortless, natural, authentic beauty look. It is a highlighter, blush, and bronzer, all in one! One stop shop 🙂

blur palette 2

If you're interested in trying out any of these amazing products, just click on any of the links below 🙂

 Becca x Chrissy Teigen Glow Face Palette

 Kat Von D Lock It Foundation 

Sand & Sky Brilliant Skin Purifying Pink Clay Mask 

 Rodan + Fields Enhancements Lash Boost

 Natasha Denona Star Palette

 Natasha Denona Sculpt & Glow

Fiori by Vince Camuto

Advertisements

Giveaway

contest image 2It’s finally giveaway time! 1 lucky winner will be getting:

  • Anastasia Beverly Hills Glow Kit
  • Anastasia Beverly Hills Modern  Renaissance Palette
  • Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector
  • Sephora Eyeshadow brush set
  • Choker Set
  • Boscia Luminizing Mask
  • Pink Coconut Hand Cream

contest image

Giveaway Rules:

✔️Like this photo on instagram✔️Tag a friend ✔️Follow @livingchiclyaverage on instagram ✔️Follow this website using your email (upper right hand corner)

hooray

Giveaway has closed!

Congratulations to the beautiful @samanzaar ! You won the giveaway!! Please message me to claim your amazing goodies. 

 

 

Grits Sunny Side Up


Grits!? what is that? Being born and raised in Massachusetts, grits isn’t exactly a common thing, which lead me to thinking of where it came from. It turns out that grits origins came from American Indian corn preparation. Additionally, t
hree-quarters of grits sold in the U.S. are predominantly from the South, stretching from Texas to Virginia. Grits is such a staple in southern culture, the state of Georgia declared grits as its official prepared food in 2002 and a similar bill was passed in South Carolina. Who would have thought how important grits could be.

pot of grits

My first encounter with grits was ironically when I moved to Georgia. Fast forward 10 years later, I married a Georgian and was reintroduced to this iconic staple meal. Boston isn’t really the go to place for grits, so of course it would have had to reenter my life through my southern connections. Per request from time to time, my husband will request a bowl of buttery grits! How can I deny the creamy bowl of deliciousness. If you’re interested in this twist of grits, continue reading. 

Ingredients

1 cup water

½ cup heavy cream

½ cup half n half

1 cup of 5-minute grits

2½ Tablespoons butter

Salt

Pepper 

1 Egg

Instructions

Add water in a pot and let it come to a boil. When it starts boiling, slowly add the 1 cup of grits while stirring steadily. When grits thickens, add the heavy cream, half n half and butter to the pot and keep stirring. You can now throw in your pinch of salt and pepper. Reduce heat to low and cover. Cook for 5-7 minute, whisking frequently. While your grits are cooking on low heat, crack an egg into a heated pan with oil of your choice. Let the egg cook in the oiled pan for about 4 minutes. You will know the egg is ready when the yolk thickens. When your 5-7 minutes are up for your grits, remove from heat and top it off with your sunny side egg!

FYI: Grits thicken fast so serve immediately. If grits are too thick, stir in a little bit of water or milk before serving. If you encounter the opposite issue and your grits are too thin aka “watery”, just let them cook a little longer which will allow it to thicken.  

I kept this version simple, but some fun variations I’ve done that I will share at some point would be adding cheddar cheese for cheesy grits! Of course topping with shrimp instead of an egg. Adding green onions and bacon. You could even use chicken or beef broth instead of water to add a savory component. Your options are endless. 

Enjoy!

 

 

 

 

Sausage Fettuccine

dishWhile pasta is culturally associated with Italy, it is said that the idea came from ancient Asian noodles. A common belief is that it was brought to Italy from China by Marco Polo during the 13th century.

Regardless of where it came from, pasta is one of my favorite foods to indulge in. Let us not forget that with me being nit-picky about the foods I am eating based on my new fitness journey; pasta isn’t exactly the go-to anymore. Some of my favorites would have to be lasagna, stuffed ravioli and Fettuccine Alfredo.

I made a Sausage Fettuccine with a tomato based sauce and of course for all my health guru’s, instead of using whole wheat fettuccine like I did, you can substitute with zucchini pasta or another veggie pasta of your choice. Give it a try. It’s a yummy dish!

Ingredients

onions

3 chopped garlic cloves

2 tablespoons of parsley 

1 tablespoon of thyme

1 tablespoon of brown sugar

2 cups of tomato sauce 

1/2 teaspoon black pepper

1 diced medium sized tomato

1/2 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper

Fettuccine or pasta of your choice

diced red onion

diced yellow onion

1 beef bouillon cube

 PREPARATION

pasta herbs

Heat oil in heavy large pot over medium-high heat. Add garlic cloves, diced yellow onion, diced tomato. Let them sauce and begin to soften for about 3 minutes. Add diced sausages and sauté until no longer pink. Add beef bouillon cube, black pepper and brown sugar.

Let simmer for 5-8 minutes. Add 2 cups of tomato sauce, parsley, thyme and crushed red pepper (for heat). Add your pasta of choice into tomato sauce, add 1/2 cup of water and let simmer until sauce thickens and pasta is cooked soft. Remember to stir occasionally, about 15-20 minutes.

Top it off with diced red onion, stir and let simmer for an additional 3-5 minutes and top it off with fresh parsley or basal for a garnish.

Enjoy!

Teriyaki Flank Steak

flank

I‘ve taken a new fitness journey and have decided to consume only brown rice instead of the traditional white rice that I grew up eating. For dinner tonight, I decided to pair my brown rice with some delicious teriyaki flank steak. I don’t eat a lot of redmeat, but I crave it from time to time and today was one of those days. 

Flank steak is a lean, flavorful cut of meat that is usually prepared marinated and cooked over a grill, but it is equally as tasty cooked in a cast iron skillet, or even a basic stainless steal pan. 

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 1/2 pound flank steak
  • Parsley
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • Butter
  • Salt
  • Garlic
  • Olive Oil
  • Sesame Oil
  • Ginger

DIRECTIONS

  1. Start of by heating your pan of choice. Add a teaspoon of sesame oil and a tablespoon of olive oil to the pan. Add a diced clove of garlic to the hot oil and let it brown for about a minute.
  2. After seasoning your steak with salt and pepper (and any additional seasoning you prefer), add your flank steak to the pan and let it sear for 5 minutes. After 5 minutes, flip the steak over so it sears for an additional 5 minutes on the other side. 
  3. After the 10 minutes of searing, your flank should be medium rare/medium. If you let it cook any longer, you will risk drying it out. 
  4. Add some butter to the pan and sprinkle in some parsley. After butter melts remove the flank and let it rest for 5-10 minutes.
  5. rice bowsNow Add 4-5 tablespoons soy sauce to the hot pan you had your flank searing in. You will bring the soy sauce to a boil while you stir and scrape the browned bits until they dissolve into the sauce. This stirring and scraping is the key to deglazing all those delicious little caramelized bits of cooked meat infuse the liquid, making it taste fantastic.
  6. Add a 1 inch piece fresh ginger, 2 tablespoons of sugar, 2 tablespoons of water, 2 tablespoons of sake (If you want a thick sauce, you would then also add 2 tablespoons of cornstarch )
  7. On low heat, mix all your ingredients and let it simmer on low heat. When the consistency starts to thicken, you are then ready to drizzle it over your steak. 
  8. You can use it as a marinade or a dipping sauce. 

Enjoy 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

 

Trending Spring 2017

Trends are not something I typical follow when it comes to fashion. I tend to like classic pieces that I can spice up or tone down depending on my mood. I also don’t like the idea of having to purchase a new wardrobe every season to keep up with what’s “trending”. I mean, of course if I had a wallet with zero limits, I might consider. The fact that trending fashion is popular at a certain point in time, its easier to purchase key pieces that are versatile.  For example, the denim jacket. That trend has recycled at least ten times since I was 5 years old. Which is what made me curious on what would recycle for Spring 2017. Check out what items are trending for Spring 2017. 

Trench Coat

Trench coats have been a staple and very much in style for years. So of course the transitional piece always makes its way back into every fashion guru’s wardrobe. This season’s twist on the classic includes puffy sleeves, to wide belts and asymmetrical finishes. Spring showers, bring May Flowers which is perfectly a valid reason to splurge on a new coat!  

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Oversized Sleeves

Bell sleeves have been growing in popularity since the new year. The bell sleeve can be either long or short and is usually set smoothly into the armhole and flares toward the bottom. Bell sleeves end anywhere from the elbow to the wrist. Perfectly pairs with jeans or elevated with a skirt. 

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Seaside Stripes

Stripes on garment first appeared in the Medieval times. During that era, only prisoners, criminals, clowns, prostitutes, hangmen, etc. were seen wearing a black and white stripped garment. However, by the end of the nineteenth century, a new definition of stripes was created by Queen Victoria. In most fashion, stripe print can be seen everywhere on garments nowadays. This trend is fun and can be in a simple white and pale blue or a little more spunky with a pattern of colors. 

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

The color yellow

If there’s one unexpected color that dominated the spring runways, it’s yellow. The hue in all shades, from bright to mustard are all acceptable. GQStyle Fashion Director Mobolaji Dawodu mentions, “Yellow is not an in-between color, you’re either all in or you’re not!” Let’s all have a little fun and get that pop of sunshine.

yellow

Khaki 

For those feeling like their daily look is getting a bit stale, or for those of us, especially me, who find themselves in a mid-winter rut and turing to all black, head to toe. It’s the perfect time to rethink and upgrade. Simply inject some change into your look by replacing your black with khaki. Khaki is a staple that has been reclaimed on the runways and is fast emerging as as one of Spring 2017’s most noteworthy looks, state Vogue

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Banker Stripes

Regardless of your profession, chances are you have worn some sort of button up with stripes. This crisp, go-with-everything button-downs to get you through the week can often get boring. Reintroducing it to your life by wearing this print in dress form with a cute blazer on top or even as an evening look, with a flirty off the shoulder top; you can instantly transform the boring bank stripe into something fun and exciting!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Shoulder cut outs

This is probably the #1 trending look. It is flirty. It is fun. It is stylish. It is simple. People tend to think trendy has an age limit, but the cold-shoulder trend is incredibly flattering for all women regardless of age and size. I mean, everyone has great looking shoulders! So why not show off the judge free zone that looks amazing no matter the body. 

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Capes

Nothing brings more drama than a cape. While the style might seem difficult to pull off, there is a cape out there for everyone. Whether it is in the form of a blazer, dress, blouse, or coat, you can’t go wrong and will without a doubt get brownie points for your trendy choice. 

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Floral

“Florals? For spring?,” you might have remembered them recite in the legendary The Devil Wears Prada. Well, actually, this time around, florals are acceptable. I promise, they really are. Pick yourself up an eye popping bouquet of florals in dress or skirt form. You won’t regret it.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Sheer

Layering isn’t just about keeping warm anymore. It adds dimension to your outfit. Introducing sheer skirts layered over colorful florals could be an option. I prefer to layer with sheer tops! Such a great way to show some skin this spring while being sexy, subtle and sophisticated. 

sheer

Dragon Fruit

dragon 2Dragon fruit is native to Central America but is also grown and exported from several Southeast Asian countries, like Thailand. Taken from several cactus species, its luscious stem provides a uniquely delicious fruit. The flavor is slightly sweet, like a blend of kiwi and apple with crunchy texture. If you’ve never seen it before, it of course may seem a little strange.

I first came across this exotic fruit while watching the television show Chopped on the Food Network. While walking through Whole Foods Market, I saw it and of course had to try it. The one thing I like to do before eating anything lately, is checking out the benefits. Why should I be putting this in my body? How will it benefit me? I find doing that makes me turn to fewer junkie, unbeneficial foods. If I can’t find any benefits than I have no business consuming it.

Based on my research, the benefits of Dragon Fruit also known, as pitaya are endless. A bite of this wildly nutritious tropical superfood can deliver a wealth of benefits for the human body. They are rich in antioxidants, vitamin C, polyunsaturated (good) fatty acids, and several B vitamins for carbohydrate metabolism, as well as carotene and protein. Calcium is present for strong bones and teeth, iron and phosphorus for healthy blood and tissue formation. Dragon fruits have zero complex carbohydrates, so foods can be more easily broken down in the body, helped by vitamin B1. The seeds of dragon fruits are high in omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids that help lower the risk of cardiovascular disorders. Eating dragon fruit can help the body maintain such normal function as getting rid of  toxic heavy metals. Be sure to scoop out the flesh, or quarter it and peel back the leathery skin eating only the white part with seeds and removing any and all residual pink parts, which are bitter. Also, you must only eat dragon fruit in moderation because it is high in fructose, which may be harmful to your health in excessive amounts. Too much of anything good, is bad!

Reasons you should add this exotic fruit into your life
  • Treats Acne
  • Improves Vision
  • Promotes Skin Health
  • Provides Essential Moisture To Dry Skin
  • Promotes Healthy Hair
  • Lowers Cholesterol
  • Helps With Stomach Ailments
  • Lowers Blood Sugar
  • Improves Cardiovascular Health
  • Cuts Low Hemoglobin Risk
  • Helps In Weight Management
  • Prevents Cancer
  • Prevents Congenital Glaucoma
  • Boosts Immunity
  • Helps Suppress Arthritis Pain
  • Is Good During Pregnancy
  • Prevents Renal Bone Disease
  • Stronger Teeth And Bones
  • Repairs Body Cells
  • Improves Appetite
  • Boosts Brain Function
  • Cures Respiratory Disorder