Tips for Reducing Stress & My De-Stress Routine

Hi – welcome to my blog if you’re new! On this blog I plan on posting my monthly favorites, in-depth skin care topics (plus whatever else you guys request!), in addition to supplemental information to go along with my videos. Videos take me an embarrassingly long time to make, and since I don’t do youtube full time, I’m limited to only one video a week. With this blog I can be in touch more often and talk about more of the topics that you’re interested in! Please sign up on the top right of the page to get emails when a new post goes up.

Today’s post is supplemental information that goes along with my de-stress routine. If you haven’t seen my de-stress routine video yet then here it is: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uTRnSDg2j-I

EXERCISE

Exercise always makes me feel better. When I’m feeling down or stressed I really don’t want to exercise but I know I ALWAYS feel better when I do, so I make myself go. I have been obsessed with Pilates lately and go to a studio called Club Pilates – they have them all over the US and I highly recommend them http://clubpilatesstudio.com

Also, I did my full fitness routine in a recent video that goes into more detail here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tdsO9_U39-M&list=UUVKFs0cesQUEGtn8gQmhbHw the only change since I made that video is that I now go to Pilates class three days a week and do my at home routine 1 or 2 days a week.

SUPPLEMENTS

If you’ve seen a lot of my videos you will know I’ve mentioned these supplements at least three times now. That’s only because they help me tremendously and not many people know about them! And every single person I’ve introduced them to has thanked me profusely. Yes ….they are that amazing!!

~ GABA supplement – this helps your body naturally cope with stress and anxiety. I take 500 mg daily (on an empty stomach! This is key) at around 5pm – I will take 2 on days that I’m under a lot of stress. http://www.amazon.com/Solgar-Gaba-500-veggie-caps/dp/B00014D8VI/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1403126520&sr=8-1&keywords=solgar+gaba+500mg

~5-HTP –This helps boost your mood by naturally stimulating serotonin production. I take 100 mg in the evenings around 7 or 8pm on an empty stomach. http://www.herbsdirect.com/product_info.php?products_id=3350&gclid=CjwKEAiAh7WkBRCQj-_zwZvk52ISJADj7z8CvuiL0DpUKlmaAPIEEtypdSXp0V44SeQ8_MunfYGC2xoCEqDw_wcB

If you deal with anxiety or any mood issues I ***HIGHLY*** recommend you read a book called “The Mood Cure” that’s how I learned about amino acids and how they affect our brain http://www.amazon.com/The-Mood-Cure-Program-Emotions–Today/dp/0142003646/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1403126555&sr=8-1&keywords=the+mood+cure

PAMPER ROUTINE/ SKINCARE

My mom’s skin care company is called Vasseur Skincare and I’m testing a new hydrating mask she’s working on that contains hyaluronic acid, argan oil, camilla oil, and glutathione (all super star hydrating ingredients). I will let you know when the product launches – it’s freaking amazing it made my skin feel like a newborn baby!! She’s still making some last minute adjustments before it launches.

I don’t often go into detail about her skin care company but in case you are interested the main thing that makes it different is that all products contain the highest concentrations of active ingredients on the market. For example, the other hyaluronic acid (HyA) moisturizers that we’ve researched contain between 2-8% HyA, whereas ours contains 15%. The vast majority of skin care only contains small concentrations of the active ingredients that provide results and include a lot of fillers and additives, which make the products less potent. Vasseur products include more of the ingredients that produce results for the skin and none of the junk – NO chemical preservatives, synthetic fillers, additives, parabens, sulfates, toxins or animal cruelty.

Also, Vasseur products are made fresh bi-monthly so that the ingredients remain active and alive. Most skin care on the market is designed to have a shelf life of 2-5 years so heat, stabilizers and aggressive preservatives are required to extend their shelf-life. The negative impact on the product is that most of the beneficial nutrients are destroyed. And the longer skin care sits on the shelf, the more inactive its ingredients become. Vssseir products only have natural preservatives and are mailed to you within weeks of being freshly made so the ingredients are in their most active, potent form. Think of this as the difference between buying processed, prepackaged food versus fresh farmer’s market vegetables.

These are my current favorite skin care products for winter (I have oily/acne prone skin but currently dealing with winter dryness)

Olive Oil Cleanser – this cleanser is extra hydrating (good for the dry winter months) and the oil helps dissolve makeup. Also, fun fact, oil dissolves oil so it helps gently get rid of surface oil and bacteria on your skin. http://www.vasseurskincare.com/olive-oil-cleanser/

Mandelic acid serum – this is THE BEST acne product I have ever used. It’s a slow form molecule so that it penetrates slowly into the skin, which means that it does not dry out the skin or cause irritation or redness like so many other acne products. My holy grail skin care product, cannot live without it. http://www.vasseurskincare.com/mandelic-acid-serum/

Gold Serum – powerhouse eye treatment that prevents and reduces eye wrinkles. I like that it comes in a rollerball so that it’s super easy to apply. I am so hooked on this stuff I use it 3x a day! http://www.vasseurskincare.com/gold-serum/

Supermoist – powerful moisturizer, great for dry winter months. Also contains several anti-aging antioxidants (DMAE, ester C, Alpha Lipoic Acid) so it also smoothes skin and refines pores. And the smell from the sweet orange extract is AMAZING!!! http://www.vasseurskincare.com/super-moist/

DIY Bubble Bath

I also had a DIY bubble bath in the video that I cut out because, in short, the bubble bath didn’t work out the way I wanted it to. I was looking for BIG bubbles that lasted and I found a recipe using honey, almond oil, soap and egg whites but it didn’t produce the big bubbles I wanted. It was a great hydrating treatment though and the recipe is below if you’re interested. I did some more research and it seems that good old-fashioned shampoo (with sulfates) produces the best bubbles. But since I only use sulfate free shampoo (because it’s an irritant) I didn’t have any on hand to test. And apparently adding one egg white to the mix will help the bubbles last for your entire bath. I hope you guys have better luck than I did!!

HONEY VANILLA BUBBLE BATH RECIPE

  • 1/2 cup light almond oil
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1/2 cup mild liquid hand or body soap (Dr. Bronner’s is my fave)
  • 1 egg white
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract

MUSIC APP

The music app I mention is called Songza. I keep waiting for them to make me pay for it but (at least for now) it’s a completely free app with no commercials – they have an apple and android version. I love their playlists – they have them based on mood, activity and genre. For my relaxing baths I listen to the “Classical Sunrise” playlist.

BOOKS

I am a big reader and I put all the books I read on goodreads, so you can follow me there if you’re interested :) https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/870443-brittany

MOVIE

The movie that I mentioned is called The Secret. I will admit the movie is a bit over-dramatic but the message is simple and profound. If you are in a bad place in your life watching this movie will help shift your paradigm about your life and your problems. I probably re-watch this at least 5-6 times a year and now it’s streaming on Netflix so there’s no excuse not to watch it!!

Okay that’s it for today, let me know if you have any questions I’m happy to answer. In the meantime, please find me on Twitter and Instagram

TWITTER: ‪https://twitter.com/vasseurbeauty

INSTAGRAM: ‪http://instagram.com/vasseurbeauty

And don’t forget to sign up on the top right hand side of the page for email updates when I post!! Thanks for stopping by

xx Brittany

Creative Gift Ideas for HIM! Dads, Boyfriends, Brothers, Male Friends etc.

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Hi all,

A lot of you have been asking that I do a gift guide for men, because, let’s be honest, men can be quite challenging to shop for. It’s easy to get inside a women’s head to think about what she might want… but for men, it’s a different story.  I was going to make a video on this but since it’s getting dangerously close to Christmas I wanted to get this up ASAP and videos take me several days to film + edit. I also didn’t have any of these products to physically show you so I didn’t think it would make a great video. And if you’re new to my blog (WELCOME!!) – please subscribe by entering your email address on the top right of the page to get an email update when I post!

I grouped these gift ideas into categories based around things that men commonly enjoy. And as an added bonus, most of these can be purchased on Amazon with two day shipping so you can get them quickly — i.e. last minute gift ideas!!… So here we go:

COFFEE LOVERS

All of the men in my life have one thing in common; they love coffee. Actually, pretty much everyone in my life (except me) loves coffee. If you can elevate your loved one’s daily coffee experience then that’s a great gift idea in my book!

Coffee Joulies ~ $59

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These cool little guys are coffee-bean shaped metal stones you put in your coffee that serve two purposes 1) brings your coffee down to the ideal drinkable temperature quickly 2) keeps it at that temperature 5x longer. “Put them in your coffee and they absorb heat when it is too hot, storing that energy inside. When your coffee reaches the perfect temperature this stored heat is released to keep it there longer.” So no more scalding hot coffee or too cold coffee! It’s a fun little gadget that your coffee enthusiast will love.

Website: http://www.joulies.com/collections/retail-products/products/5-pack

Bulletproof Coffee Set ~ $64.95

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In case you haven’t heard of bulletproof coffee, it’s coffee taken to the next level. It’s the “lowest toxin, highest performance coffee” and has a cult following amongst coffee enthusiasts. Rather than try to explain it, it’s easier to watch this quick video:

Their coffee is pricey, but like I said above, it’s a whole different level of coffee and I think the man in your life would love it. I got this for Ryan last year and he became HOOKED. They  have a lot of different kits at different price points depending on how much you want to spend.

Website: https://www.upgradedself.com/kits

CAR LOVERS

Ryan just bought a new car – his baby, Julio – and I know that he will absolutely love anything I get for him (“him” being Julio). If your man also has an inappropriate level of love for his car, then this is an easy gift idea.

Drop Stop – $20

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This “why-didn’t-I-think-of-that” gadget solves one of car driver’s biggest problems — the “I dropped something into the inpenetrable space between my car seat and cannot get it out.” A few months ago Ryan thought he lost his wallet and had everything replaced – credit cards, debit card, driver’s license ….only to later discover it had fallen into the abyss (i.e. in his car seat gap)!!! At that moment I knew he needed this. Simple, but oh so clever and something anyone who drives could use.

Website: http://www.amazon.com/Drop-Stop-Original-Patented-Filler/dp/B00BYH6C1E

COOL GADGETS

Kool Tool Belt ~ $22-$30

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I think the name speaks for itself – this is a Kool Tool. This is basically an inspector gadget belt that has 10 hidden tools in a very minimalistic, sleek design. So clever, right?! I am getting this for my step dad who loves tools & clever gadgets. Let’s just say this is a man who keeps a measuring tape on him at all times, “just in case.” He will be over-the-freaking-moon for this.

Website:  http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B00LGV3WW0/—/?ie=UTF8&tag=viglink123654-20

GYM LOVERS

Bose in-ear headphones ~$99.95

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I will admit that over the years i’ve purchased this gift for my brother, my dad, my step dad, my boyfriend and myself (for good measure). And every person I’ve gifted these to has absolutely LOVED them. These are probably the best in ear headphones on the market (seriously…. look at the reviews) and are great for your man who loves to listen to music while working out. They also last a really long time and the sound quality is IN- freaking- CREDIBLE.

Website: http://www.amazon.com/Bose-SoundTrue-In-Ear-Headphones-Black/dp/B00M5A7L14/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1418331043&sr=8-1&keywords=bose+in+ear&pebp=1418331044840

SENTIMENTAL GIFTS

DIY Wall Art Collage ~$30+

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I showed how to make this cool wall art collage in my DIY gift idea video (WATCH HERE) and I think it makes a really great, heartfelt gift. It’s an elegant collage that is actually a piece of artwork that your loved one can hang up and feel very loved. I made this one for Ryan and choose to include photos of us, his friends and also some of his favorite things (the Ravens, weight lifting and peanut butter … i.e. his three true loves)

‘Love Note’ Tear Away Daily Calendar ~$10+

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The concept here is to get your loved one a tear away daily calendar (yes, they still make these. You can pick one out based around what your guy likes). Then you personalize this by writing them notes on random – or all – days for the upcoming year. You can tell them “you look handsome today!” or “5 days until your birthday!” — or whatever nice/cute notes you want to leave. I think we all know that if there is anything a man loves, it’s flattery.  This is a small, simple gift that will keep him smiling for an entire year!!! Let’s just say i’ve done this for someone in the past and they told me it was one of the best gifts they’ve ever received. You’re welcome :)

Link: http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_ss_i_0_15?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=tear+off+daily+calendar&sprefix=tear+off+daily+%2Caps%2C352

EXPERIENCE GIFTS

This next category is something I like to call “experience gifts” — these are gifts where you purchase tickets or admission to an event or class that you can experience together. I personally prefer these types of gifts because, for me, experiences & memories always trump possessions. BUT the problem with experience gifts is that your loved one doesn’t get anything fun to open on Christmas! My solution to this is to accompany your ‘experience gift’ with a complementary physical item so they get both the pleasure of opening a physical gift and the excitement of an event to look forward to. These types of gifts are also easy to put together last minute because you can purchase the tickets online and print them out instantly. Let’s be honest, this is the real reason why I tend to mostly give these types of gifts (sad, but true)!

WINE TOUR + COOL WINE OPENER ~$200+

This is actually what I am getting for Ryan this year. We both enjoy wine and have done a wine tour together before and had SO MUCH FUN. I would suggest using Yelp to find a highly rated wine tour in your area. In our case, Temecula wine country is about 1.5 hours away and has a great tour company called the Grapeline that gives all day wine tours with a catered lunch for around $100 per person. I am also going to get us a hotel so we can make a weekend of it and really enjoy ourselves. Along with this I bought him this cool electric wine opener (that also kinda looks like a spaceship) so he can have something to open on Christmas day.

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Electric wine opener $20: http://www.amazon.com/Oster-FPSTBW8207-S-Electric-Bottle-Opener/dp/B003YFI0O6/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1418332327&sr=8-1&keywords=wine+opener

COOKING CLASS + GOURMET SPICE KIT ~$200+

Another fun thing to do is purchase a cooking class, either just for them or for the both of you to do together. My brother loves to cook so this is what I am going to get for us to do together. Again, I just used Yelp to find a highly rated local cooking class (we are doing a vegan class since he’s vegan). For his “something to open” component I am getting him this gourmet spice kit – you could also get nice cookware, a grilling tools kit, cookbook etc to go along with this.

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Gourmet spice set $20: http://www.uncommongoods.com/product/dessert-and-baking-salts

Funny/Fun (but also useful) Gifts

Decision paperweight ~ $15

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For the man in your life who can be painfully indecisive you can get him this “decision paperweight.”  For less than the price of a movie ticket (seriously, can we talk about movie ticket prices these days?!) you can basically help your man solve his life problems for all eternity (nbd). This basically the sexy adult version of a magic 8 ball. Not sure what to do? Press a button and your paperweight will tell you! Gag gift, but let’s be honest most men could use this…..(and the reviews on this are awesome/ hilarious so I had to include it)

Link: http://www.uncommongoods.com/product/decision-paperweight

Squatty Potty ~$25

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I saw this on Shark Tank and thought — “this would make SUCH a crappy gift!” This is basically a toilet accessory that helps you “go better” (fun fact, we’re all pooping wrong). I’m not going to go into detail here but you can click on their website and read into it.  Look, everybody poops, right? This gift is guaranteed to get some good laughs and probably be the star of your family christmas opening party. Kinda gross? Sure. But in the end they will thank you for it :)

Link: http://squattypotty.com/

Okay, that’s it for now – I hope you enjoyed these unusual/ creative gift ideas for men! Let me know in the comments if you have other ideas. And please subscribe to my blog for more posts like this!

xx Brittany

4 Healthy Holiday Treats + Holiday Party Inspiration!

I have a HUGE sweet tooth but since I try to eat healthy (and sugar makes me break out) I’ve spent a lot of time figuring out recipes that are both healthy and also taste really good! This video contains full demos for how to make everything and also gives you some ideas + inspiration for throwing a holiday party – based on my annual holiday party called Holiday Fest!

***RECIPES ***

UGLY CHRISTMAS SWEATER BALLS
Continue reading

4 Easy DIY Christmas Gift Ideas!

Hi all, this week’s video includes some fun, creative and unique ideas for DIY Christmas gifts!

Includes:

How to Make LUSH Lotion Bars

DIY ‘Sleeping Beauty Kit’ with a DIY Lavender Pillow/Linen Spray

DIY Book Safe / Jewelry box

DIY Wall Art

Watch the video to see how they are made :)

11 Quick Tips for Flawless Skin!

 

1 ) If you have tried everthing and your skin still wont clear up, try an elimination diet. Diet and skin are related and many times sensitivity to one ingredient will lead to breakouts. Cut out dairy, sugar and grains (refined wheat – crackers, white pasta, cookies) for two weeks. Then reintroduce one at a time to see what your skin is most reactive to.

 

2) For acne prone skin change your pillowcases nightly and use and gentle detergent. Bacteria and oil can get reintroduced onto the skin while you sleep. Or sleep on your back use a beauty pillow so your face doesn’t touch the pillow.

 

watch the video here: 11 Quick Tips for Flawless Skin!   OR click to continue reading ….. Continue reading

The 12 Worst Skin Care Mistakes!

Learn the biggest skin care mistakes that you might be making without even realizing it! Click here to watch now: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=24nbKN1aG-Y

Watch next – How to Eat for Clear Skin: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W1YuWHiMvy4

: : K E Y P O I N T S : :

Using toothpaste to treat a pimples — baking soda (skin is naturally acidic, baking soda is high alkaline- compromises lipid barrier), sodium laurel sulfate- harshly drying soap & highly alkaline, mint is an irritant, and silica is an abrasive. For an effective spot treatment use clay mask — I recommend Maxiclear Advance by Vasseur Skincare http://www.vasseurskincare.com/maxiclear-advanced/

Popping pimples at home. By popping your own pimples you are breaking skin and immediately putting dirt and oils into the open skin. This can cause infections and much, much larger issues, like more aggressive acne and scarring.
Sticking your finger in your skin care container – Since your fingers are usually your applicator, bacteria build up fast in bottles and in makeup sponges, then end up on your face. Use a qtip or opt for skin care products in airless containers, like Vasseur Skincare.

Touching your face throughout the day. More than likely you touch your face constantly throughout the day. Every time you do that, you’re adding to the dirt, oil and bacteria that can get under your skin and cause problems.
Skipping moisturizer because your skin is too oily. In reality, if skin gets too dry, especially if you’re already using acne treatments, which can be very drying, your acne can get worse.
Ignoring your diet — dairy, sugar and processed foods in particular. Watch my video “why your skin care isn’t working” to learn more.

Not wearing sunscreen daily & not reapplying . Your foundation is not enough

Overexfoliating or harshly exfolating — Causes dryness, inflammation, destroying healthy cells, promoting skin discoloration, and stripping away healthy oils and bacteria.

Using cleansers with sulfates and alcohol SD-40, isopropyl alcohol – irritant for acne-prone and senstive skin types, leading to redness, dryness, and in some cases, brown spots and premature aging.

Taking a hot shower to “open the pores” Hot water dissolves your natural body oils and makes skin dry.

Using eye cream with mineral oil or petroleum — Since these ingredients are not absorbed easily, they sit on the surface and suffocate the skin.

Find me on Twitter and Instagram @VasseurBeauty!!

☆ DIY ☆ MAC Fix Plus – Makeup Refreshing / Finishing Spray

Learn how to make your own DIY MAC Fix Plus dupe for a fraction of the price! MAC Fix Plus is used to refresh & finish makeup and also can be applied to eyeshadow to increase its pigmentation and shine. This DIY recipe was made by Melanie Vasseur, a cosmetic chemist, so it’s extremely close to the real thing ♡ Click here to watch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WTzrkfjrM18

How to Have a Spa Night at Home

Here’s our suggested routine for a full spa night at home! Includes night time skin care tips, at home face mask, bath routine and a DIY hair mask. Watch now: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d2FnEy2ZoFo

** Video Overview **
Cleansing routine
• Olive oil cleanser is a cleansing oil and facial cleanser in one
• Oil dissolves the oil on your skin and removes any remaining makeup
• Leaves your skin soft and hydrated
• Spash face with water to remove and gently pat dry with washcloth

Detox mask
• Maxiclear is a clay based mask with mandelic acid, salicylic acid, glycolic acid + zinc to remove deeply lodged impurities — amazing on blemishes

Bath time essentials
• While the water is running I make myself a cup of tea
• Bamboo leaf tea is my new obsession, the silicia in bamboo improves skin elasticity and strengthens hair and nails
• Has a lot of other benefits + also tastes good
• With this I add local organic honey, in case you didn’t know this, consuming local honey can help with seasonal allergies aka hay fever
• For my bath I add lavender scented Epsom salt — Epsom salt is high in magnesium that is highly detoxifying and absorbs into your body while soaking in the tub
• Also add bubbles !
• Light your favorite candles and you have just set the mood for the perfect relaxing bath
• This is a time I like to unplug, sip my tea and read a good book. Oh, and play with bubbles.

Skin Care Routine
• Next for my night time skin care routine, I use Vasseur Skincare products. This line was created by my mother, formulated with the highest concentrations of active ingredients on the market, also without parabens, synthetics, toxins, harsh chemicals. It’s both natural and highly effective, best of both worlds. You can use code YOUTUBE for 15% off your first order at http://www.vasseurskincare.com
• Start with mandelic acid serum, aka triple skin perfect serum. Works to clear skin, brighten and improve overall skin tone and elasticity. This is my holy grail skin care product and in particular is great at removing the small forehead bumps and blemishes that pop up from time to time
• Follow that up with supermoist, moisturizer on steroids. Also contains vitamin C and some amazing skin firming antioxidants ALA and DMAE.
• Finish with gold serum, highly intensive eye serum to prevent eye area wrinkles

DIY Hair Mask
• To make my favorite at home hair mask I just combine one part organic coconut oil with one part EVOO. Slather this into my hair, focusing on the ends
• Also heard recently from my hairdresser that if you twist your hair it helps the mask penetrate the hair more deeply. SO, twirl that hair ladies!

What Order to Apply Your Skin Care Products

In today’s skin care Q&A video I answer a very common skin care question: “What is the correct order to apply my skin care products?” Layering your skin care products can seem complicated, but in this video I make it easy to remember using an acronym! Watch now: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YnxKkU60GIk

Summary:

An easy acronym to remember the correct order to apply your skin care products/how to layer your skin care products is ***STMS: Simple To Manage Skincare***

This stands for:

*S* Serums – If a product is a serum formulation – these will have typically have “serum” in the name (i.e. Green Tea Serum, Copper Peptide Serum) then these should be applied first, closest to the skin.

*T* Treatment Products – acne products, anti-aging products, vitamin & antioxidant treatments (i.e. Vasseur Skincare’s ALA cream or Ester C cream). The order you apply products within this category does not make a big difference.

*M* Moisturizers, this includes your regular moisturizer, your hydrating night creams/day creams and eye cream

*S* Sunscreen should always go on top (in your daytime skin care routine)

If you have any specific questions, please leave it in the comments below!