My Favorite Beauty Tips

 

 

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Beauty isn’t everything, but if I get up and make myself look somewhat put together, I have a better day.  If I feel good, I’m generally more happy and productive.  So I’ve rounded up some of my favorite ways to look my best and feel ready to get out and kill it.

I know beauty can be a DANG touchy subject.  I am not trying to tell you that you need to go out and give yourself an extreme makeover.  I am not saying that everyone needs to go out and buy a bag full of makeup. But I do not think that attempting to feel good about the way you look is vain.  Your appearance shouldn’t be your main priority, but I don’t think you shouldn’t neglect yourself completely.

When I feel good about the way I look, I’m more social, more productive, and more kind.  I’m much more likely to want to leave the house and get things done.  On days where I stay in my pajamas I just turn into a big grump and get nothing done at all!  So getting ready for the day and making my appearance a bit of a priority has really helped me be a better person in general, and that’s not a bad thing at all!

I’m no beauty guru, and I hope this post doesn’t insult your intelligence, but I think that these are the main things I come back to when I’m feeling kind of blah.  I don’t do all of them all of the time, and what helps you the most will be unique to you, your body, your personality, you lifestyle, etc.  I hope this is helpful!

How To Look and Feel Better Than Ever

1. Wear jeans that fit. Oh guys, I love sweat pants, but when I stay in my jammies all day I get nothing done and I’m a grump!  When I put on some flattering jeans, I get more done and I’m a nicer mama. Sometimes I have to try on a BAJILLION pairs of jeans until I find some that I like (and sometimes I just sit down in the dressing room and cry because nothing makes my bum look the way I want it to, but that’s OK sometimes), but it is a quest well worth the effort. In general, finding clothing that flatters you and makes you feel awesome is one of the best things you can do to make you feel excited about getting out the door. And you don’t have to wear jeans all the time — just wear whatever you feel is flattering and comfortable for you — but not so comfortable that you just want to lounge around and not go anywhere.

2. Get tan. DO NOT bake your skin and get cancer, guys.  I did, and I’m paying for it!  But a good self tanner can do wonders for my self confidence, even in the winter when no one really sees much of my tan!  I use a spray by Toma’s for my face/neck/chest and a foam by Tanwise (applied with a mitt) for my body. You can get both of them at Sally Beauty Supply. A little color on my arms and legs can make me much more willing to wear a skirt that doesn’t go to the floor!

3. Have good hair. Sometimes a good blowout is all you need to feel like a million bucks (for days!).  Growing out your hair is a pain (if you have the time and money, extensions are a fun option), but taking Biotin and having some patience will be extremely rewarding.  Find a hairstyle and color that flatters you and wear your hair down once in a while!  Plenty of people I know look great in a ponytail, and plenty of people look amazing with short hair! At the very least, just take a shower and DO your hair instead of letting it turn into a big greaseball-bun-poop thing.

4. Clean up your eyebrows.  I don’t know why, but eyebrows make the most amazing difference in how your face looks.  Learn how to draw them on and find a good color to fill them in that isn’t too warm.  I like Brun by Mac, or Trust by MaskCara Beauty.  Don’t be afraid to have big brows, and don’t over pluck! You may need to experiment with different colors and shapes to find what works for you, but generally going slightly darker and making your arch a little more dramatic is helpful.

5. Take care of your skin, and learn to do your makeup.  I don’t think people need to wear a ton of makeup to look awesome, but a little bit of highlighting and contouring, blush, illuminator, and mascara (and maybe some eyeliner and eyeshadow) can just really make you look more put together. I know people don’t like hearing that they need to wear makeup to look acceptable, and I understand the controversy.  But, as they say, even a barn looks better when it’s painted, so why not make something that’s great look a little bit better?  I don’t think there is really any virtue in letting yourself go!  If you can enhance your natural beauty and look a little fresher with makeup, DO IT! If you want makeup tips I really really love Cara Brook’s blog, MaskCara, and I also use and love her makeup line. Now, I do know PLENTY of people who look fantastic without a lick of makeup. And that’s great! Sometimes just a little bit of chap stick and mascara are all you need to look a little extra nice and that’s fantastic.  If we were all as beautiful as my 6-year-old daughter it would simply be sinful to put any makeup on!  But my skin does NOT look like silk and my eyelashes aren’t a mile long and black as the night, so, makeup it is for me. Another think that has really made a big difference for me, with or without makeup, is using Tinkles razors to get rid of the peach fuzz on my face.  It makes a big difference and won’t result in you growing a beard.  Promise.

6. Take care of your smile.  This can be expensive, and I personally have just learned to embrace my crooked teeth because for me I don’t think they are too bad and I’ve even had people tell me that they are kind of cool. That said, I think a round of white strips can really make a difference in your teeth and will make you want to smile more.  And smiling makes other people happy, and it makes you happy! Yay!

7. Don’t neglect your nails.  I rarely paint my fingernails, personally.  I hate when the paint starts chipping and for me that’s just too much maintenance! As a mom with kids to snuggle and dishes to clean and meals to make, I rarely have a moment to let my nails dry anyway.  I do like to have my toenails painted, though, and I use a good foot scrubber to keep my feet looking good so I’m not self-conscious about them. So for me, I don’t think painted nails are a huge necessity, but they can really make you feel pretty when you need a little lift. At the very least, make sure your nails and feet are neat, clean, and moisturized. I think it goes without saying that some good old personal hygiene is the very least you should be doing in order to feel like a dignified human being!  I sometimes can be found shaving my legs in the sink on days where I haven’t made the time to shower, but if that’s all you can find time for, it’s something!

8. Be healthy!  I personally don’t feel like hours of cardio make a difference in how my body looks or feels, but when I lift weights and really work my muscles I almost instantly feel better about my body.  I like doing high-energy workouts so that I really sweat and generate some endorphins, so any good high-intensity-interval-training strength routine works wonders for me.  I also love doing sprints, but lifting weights or doing body-weight strength training just makes me feel like a rockstar and works wonders for me. I’ve seen people lose weight from just doing light cardio and eating less but the people who I really think look great are the ones who just eat HEALTHIER and get STRONG. Eat fruits, vegetables, and healthy fats, drink loads of water, and GET YOUR BEAUTY SLEEP!

9. Avoid awkward shoes. I hate wearing heels because they hurt and because sometimes they make me feel like silly, but there have been all kinds of other shoes that make me feel pretty — even just some cute lace-up boots. certain colors of shoes make me feel better that others, too. Even cute workout shoes make me more motivated to work out.  The shoes you wear will depend on your personal style and what you’re wearing with them, but be sure to find ones you really feel good (and comfortable) in.  And don’t wear the wrong shoes with the wrong outfit.  I have gladiator sandals that look great with a pencil skirt but terrible with a midi skirt or jeans.  It’s weird.

10. Consider jewelry.  I don’t tend to wear much jewelry,  but I like to wear a watch to make myself feel a little more dressed up and put together.  Sometimes I like to put on a simple necklace.  And that’s it for me.  Sometimes I’ll wear some fancy earrings if I want to really dress up. Jewelry can be a really fun way to feel and look attractive, and I think it can really make a huge difference.  I like to avoid really big chunky or noisy jewelry because it can just be too distracting and I’m not looking to have everyone staring at me! For me beautifying yourself isn’t something you should be doing to turn every head in the room.  It should be just enough to make others feel comfortable around you and to help yourself feel comfortable in your own skin.

Sheri Dew said, “No amount of time in front of the mirror will make you as attractive as having the Holy Ghost with you.” So, be a good person, smile, meditate, pray, seek spiritual guidance, listen to music that really makes you feel good, and just do whatever you need to be whole and healthy and happy and put-together inside, and it really will shine through on the outside. It sounds weird, but think about how much more attractive healthy smiley people are than sad grumpy angsty people.

The other day I didn’t put any makeup on and was wearing workout clothes and running shoes, and my daughter said, “Oh, you look pretty today!” When I said, “Really? But I haven’t even put any makeup on!” she instantly replied, “Well, you’re pretty just the way you are.” I like to think I’ve taught her well! It’s funny how we think beauty has to mean eyeliner and covering up our freckles but I think a lot of kids and men don’t even really notice a big difference.  And there are some clothes I wear that are trendy and seem cute to me, but my husband really doesn’t understand why I like them. So beauty is kind of about perspective sometimes! I like getting other people’s opinions because sometimes it stops me from doing something silly, but I also think it’s important to do what makes you really feel comfortable.

I hope this was helpful to somebody!  If there are things you want me to post about in the future please let me know.

 

xo

 

J

 

*This post contains NO affiliate links, nor is this post sponsored by any company*

Cute Kitchen Stuff

I’m excited about the new house we are building.  We’ve only been in our current home for two years, but we had a great opportunity to build a home for a decent price in a new development, and I think it will be the perfect change.  While I’ve loved my little galley kitchen, I’m excited to have an island where my kids can hang out or color and talk to me while I cook.

Here are some of the kitchen design ideas I’m dreaming about.

 

kitchen things | geekyeyes blog

 

Blue Lower Cabinets

Blue Lower Cabinets

photo from Jillian Harris

I can’t stop being obsessed with white upper cabinets (with a few glass doors), and blue lower cabinets against light wood floors. It’s just so cute.

Warehouse Pendant Lights

black pendant I love these in black, white, or silver. They make for a cute modern-farmhouse look.

Sexy Faucets

black faucet Whether a faucet is stainless steel, brushed nickel, chrome, black, or gold, a super-sleek faucet always catches my eye.

Metal-And-Wood Stools

NMH7KGS_mu 5d08ffe7c7237ca35821745db4f92c95 magnolia home metal:wood stool These stools are just so cool. I can’t stop staring at them. The first is WAY out of my price range, the second is much more affordable but still pretty expensive in my opinion, and the third is from the upcoming Magnolia Home furniture line by Joanna Gaines — I’m super curious to see how affordable their stuff is going to be — I’m assuming the pricing will be pretty average . . . not cheap but not outrageous.

Turkish Towels

faacd932d43be67c2ccb69ac97e1bba6 Dish towels are such a fun way to cheer up a kitchen.  Turkish towels are my absolute favorite in the kitchen or bathroom, or even at the beach.

This Rug

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photo from Rachel Parcell

Who else is obsessed with Rachel Parcell’s kitchen?! I really love her rug from Caitlin Wilson Textiles.   To see more of what I’m swooning over for my future kitchen, you can visit my Kitchen board on Pinterest.   Have a great day, lovelies!

xo,

J

 

 

*This post contains no affiliate links; I’m too lazy for that today.  All pictures are shamelessly stolen from other shops, online stores, and blogs; however, all original sources are linked within this post.

#green

Happy March!

Green has been my favorite color since elementary school, so I’m excited for St. Patrick’s Day! Here are some fun green items I’d love to add to my collection.

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sweatshirt | backpack | Ray Bans | slim wallet | gladiator flats | stud earrings

xo

J

Black Basics

Black clothing, guys.  It’s slimming, it’s classic, it’s moody, it goes with everything. I’m liking this nerdy sweatshirt from H&M, but with this basic outfit you could swap out just about any other top to instantly get a completely different look. I’ll post more ideas for tops next week. All of these things are from H&M!

Black Basics | H&M

 

sweatshirt | pants | hat | backpack (sold out! similar here, here, and here) | platform boots | sunnies | belt

xo, J

 

Sweater Weather

Easy Cable V Neck Pullover | Free People

 

I don’t really have anything profound to write today, other than that I’ve loved read The Book of Mormon with my family lately.  Every day when I read I just find something really specific that helps me know what I need to do that day in order to be a better person.

One thing I’m trying to be better about is not obsessing over having nice things.

I think it’s important to look nice and make sure your home is clean, because feeling good in your own skin and making your home a welcoming and calm place just makes a huge difference in your mood and ability to function. Right? Of course right.

Life isn’t a competition, though.  Our possessions don’t make you better than anyone else.  The way we treat people is what makes us worthwhile people.  I’m not even close to being perfect, guys, but I like to remember that “a saint is a sinner who keeps on trying.”

So, while a new sweater won’t make you a better person, it might put you in a better mood so you can be a nicer person. And my favorite one from Free People is pretty cozy, and lots of colors are on sale.  Just sayin’.

 

xoxoxo

 

J

 

Welcome!

If you are new here, it’s probably because you saw me on the last page of Utah Valley Magazine’s January/February issue (if you haven’t read the article, click that link, skip to the end of the electronic version of the magazine, and go back a page or two).  Unfortunately my name was printed as “Jessica Walker” instead of Walters (the writer just had a baby, so we’ll forgive her!).  So, if you want to follow on Instagram and see how our little NICU baby is doing now, you will NOT find us by looking up Jessica Walker! My Instagram profile is @jessjesswalters

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Also, not to be nit-picky (because it was so nice of Utah Valley Magazine to include me in their Jan/Feb issue) but the article states that we got pregnant with Ava around our third wedding anniversary; we actually became pregnant with Ava just after our SECOND anniversary, and she was BORN just before our third anniversary.  I probably told that to Kate in a weird, confusing way. So no, Ava is not a four-year-old Kindergarten prodigy. We were married in November of 2007, and Ava was born September 1, 2010. I know that isn’t super important and that absolutely NO ONE is freaking out about it, but I like things to be correct!

Thank you for reading! I write this blog to help other people know that they can do hard things, and I write to help other people smile and appreciate the beautiful things in life.

xoxo

 

Jess

 

Photographers, videographers, bloggers, web designers, and other creatives: for information on collaborating with us as we grow this blog in 2016, email us at geekyeyes@gmail.com

 

 

 

 

10 Happy Things

Yesterday, while Ava was at a friend’s house and while Boston was napping, I got to hang out with Nixon for a little bit, and it was fun to just sit and eat lunch and talk to him.

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When Ava got home, Boston was still napping and Nixon was watching a show, and I just sat at the table while Ava had a snack and I talked to her.

I just love little times when I actually stop and talk to my kids or with Nick.  Those moments are so sweet.

Some other things that have been making me happy:

1) This poster that says:

“You can never influence the world by trying to be like it.”

2) Sweaters.

3) Is it still acceptable to be drooling over Adele’s makeup in her “Hello” video?? If you can get past the hilarious posing at the beginning of this video, it’s a pretty good tutorial for how to replicate that cute look.

4) Wavy beach hair!  I love this tutorial at Barefoot Blonde, which I used to do Ava’s hair in this picture.

5) Eating boring.  I enjoy food, but I’ve found that eating the same things every day helps me not overeat.  I just eat my oatmeal, snack on fruit and veggies (and chocolate), eat my sandwich for lunch, and drink tons of water.  When I’m not eating great, it’s because I’ve fallen out of those habits and impulsively get up in the morning and eat sugary cereal, snack on junk food and sip Diet Coke all afternoon, forget to eat lunch, and then I’m cranky and want to eat loads of Mexican food and Diet Coke for dinner. So, don’t do that.

6) Season 6 of Parenthood is on Netflix!

7) All the baby snuggles.  Guys, Boston has been THE BEST BABY. Like ever.  I love all my kids, but Boston makes me want three more babies. Speaking of having a million babies, have you guys seen @chloeandbeans on Instagram?  She’s 22, and has three boys ages 3, 2, and 1, AND has triplets.  Her pictures are just beautiful and exploding with cuteness. And they are Australian and I swear the babies coo in Australian accents and she’s always calling them her “cheeky babies” and I could just die.

8) Fixer Upper.  Duh. #shiplap

9) Pinning bathroom and kitchen ideas on Pinterest.  Help.

10) Stephanie Nielson. What a cool chick. There really aren’t words to describe her beauty.

 

xo

 

J

 

The End of 2015

It’s the end of the year! Naturally, I’m sure we’re all feeling really introspective and quite guilty about all the cookies and fudge we’ve been eating, and we’re all about to swear off soda for a year. If you’re like me, you’ve probably made a gigantic, exhaustive list off all the things you want to start doing or stop doing in 2016.

I’m no goal-setting pro, but I’m old enough to realize this never works, and luckily I just read this wonderful Instagram post and this blog post from my sweet friend Natashia, and she reminded me about this talk about self improvement that has just been so great in reminding me to work on one thing at a time!  If I’m trying to do to many things (which is ALWAYS), I don’t ever actually finish anything (does anyone else have a pile of, oh, ten books they’ve read the first couple chapters of, and then started another book, and five years later you haven’t finished a single book?).

I think if I focus on 1 or 2 main things this year, the little things will come, because they are always on my mind, but I think I want to focus on a few things for the entire year that I definitely don’t want to let slip through the cracks.

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Also, I have to tell you guys, I have such kind and thoughtful people around me who have been such great examples to me this year in so, so many ways.  If you know me or have spoken to me or helped our family in some way through this INSANELY CRAZY year, thank you. I can’t really think of anyone I have talked to this year who hasn’t taught me something, even if just by being who they are. I’ve been so humbled by everyone’s kindness and goodness and greatness this year.

My sister who lives in North Carolina got to go see Vanessa Carlton, and she got to go backstage, which made me so so happy! My sister and I pooled our money to buy her first album as kids, and all three of us sisters played all of her songs on the piano.  Rachel had her sign a copy of her new album for me.  I cried.  Rachel also got me a couple of black-and-grey shirts from H&M that were identical to a couple shirts I had pinned on Pinterest. Anyone who knows me well knows that my closet is 30 percent black clothes, 30 percent grey clothes, 20 percent 8-dollar target shirts in black/grey/pink/mustard/green, 10 percent flannel, and 10 percent beanies. My other sister got me a cute fake plant and a book of easy recipes, and my brother who does customer service for a makeup company got me some amazing mascara.  My husband bought me a bunch of new clothes, including some adorable booties and pointy faux suede heels, and he also ordered me a new batch of MaskCara cosmetics, since I went through my last palette so dang fast! My parents got me some black lace-up boots and the Free People sweater I’ve been drooling over ever since I saw Cara wearing it at Pinners. I will probably wear it every single day for the rest of my life.

 

I hope everyone has fun ringing in the new year!

 

Chambray Shirt Dress

We had a fun family staycation at the Montage in Park City over the weekend.  The kids had fun bowling, swimming in the heated outdoor pool, and roasting s’mores by the fire pit.  Boston did really well on the trip — have I mentioned how happy I am that he is NURSING?! Like really, really, really, really happy. Pumping and bottle feeding was not fun. Straight breastfeeding has been a zillion times easier.

 

 

I love chambray! Here are 6 chambray (shirt) dresses under $30, all from Forever 21. They are cute with tights (or skinny jeans) and boots.

chambray

 

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6

xo
J