Dealing with my Anxiety During the Holidays

I want to interrupt my normal beauty blogging to talk about something that effects me very personally. My anxiety. If you prefer my regular beauty posts as opposed to posts like these then feel free to check back in next Tuesday to read about beauty things that I still suck at. 

There are thousands of people whose mental health effects them in some way during the holidays. Even with Thanksgiving already being behind us the time between now and Christmas and even New Years is really difficult for me. I want to really focus on my personal experience because I know that everyone experiences anxiety differently and I can’t speak for everyone. 

Some of my biggest struggles

One thing that makes the holidays difficult for me is traveling to visit family. There are kind of two parts to this one. I never really know when a panic attack is going to strike so it is really hard to always be prepared for it. I know that Chris can help me to calm down sometimes but what if we are around family that doesn’t understand what is going on? What if we are in a place where I can’t do some of the things that help me to cope? What if they think I’m crazy? 

These are some of the things that go through my mind when we are traveling. The biggest thing is that I can’t really explain what’s going on when I get anxious like that and the people around me will think that I’m crazy. 

Are these fears irrational? Probably. Do they keep me from wanting to travel and just stay home where the only person who can think I’m crazy is Chris? Yes. 

There are certain triggers that can’t be avoided in some situations. For example, I work in retail so when I get to be irritable because of my anxiety I have to bury that under a deep layer of a customer service smile and fear of being fired. 

What I do to try and help

One thing that I do is I write this blog. I hope that maybe it will be a little easier for people to understand that I can’t do constant activities or when I am feeling anxious I can’t just calm down at the drop of a hat. 

Another thing that I do is I keep a panic attack emergency kit with me when we are traveling or when we are going to be around family/friends for extended periods of time. For me this includes lavender/ginger tea packets, unscented lotion mixed with calming essential oils, and headphones. These things will usually help me to calm my anxiety enough to get to a place where I can do some breathing exercises and go for a walk. 

With Christmas around the corner it can feel like an obligation to visit family and friends and to not feel like an inconvenience. Traveling and visiting can be stressful for me and I am sure for others. It is tempting to just stay home and send a card. If that is what you need to do to make sure you are in a healthy place I will be right there with you! 

When your parents want you to come downstairs and talk to Aunt So-and-so or when your family wants you to go caroling on strangers doorsteps anxiety can rear its ugly head. Sometimes going out to distract yourself is the answer but sometimes staying in and focusing on yourself is the best thing to do. For me, I just have to take it one thing at a time so that I can do what it best for me. 

How to Travel on a Beauty Budget and a Space Budget

Note: there are associate links in this post. It just means that if you click on them and purchase something, I will get a portion of the profits. 

If it were up to me I would be allowed to bring a whole extra bag on trips just to make sure that I have everything I need for any skin/makeup/hair emergency. However, Chris would probably think I’m crazy and also be upset because its heavy and I would make him carry it. 

Even when we just go to his parents for the weekend I still overpack beauty items before I go back and reign myself in. Will I actually use texturizing cream, hair oil, hair masks, and color enhancer? Probably not but when I’m packing all I think to myself is “What if I really want to have wavy textured hair with this dress and I don’t have the right size curing wand or my sea salt spray??????” Honestly, its not a big deal and I know that Vacation Kate probably won’t want to put in that kind of effort anyway. 

So how do I balance Beauty Addict Kate and Traveler Kate? 

Continue reading “How to Travel on a Beauty Budget and a Space Budget”

Major Skin Don’ts and what to do instead

Doing the things you know you should when it comes to skincare is great but if you are still doing things that you shouldn’t its kind of like taking one step forward and two steps back. 

I have tried so many skincare remedies and methods but when it comes down to it some advise is downright awful.

Don’t use an apricot scrub

So I am definitely someone that is guilty of using this. However, apricot scrubs generally are made from apricot shells which leave tiny micro cuts on your skin which can end up leaving you with more acne. I am not an expert on the exact science of this so ask your local dermatologist or skincare expert if you are curious about how exactly this works. 

Do still exfoliate

Sometimes you will still end up with dry skin and exfoliating can still have some good benefits for your skin. I recommend finding a more skin friendly sugar scrub or exfoliant with those little beads in it. My favorite is the Vitamin E Facial was from Soap and Glory. The beads are perfectly round so there is no skin damage!

Don’t skip moisturizing (even if you have oily skin)

If you skip moisturizing then your skin will only want to produce even more oil to compensate for being dry. I used to only use toner when my skin was really oily but that only made it worse. If you have oily skin and you want to lesson it skipping moisturizing is not your friend. 

Do try a water based moisturizer instead

Your skin produces oil to try to make sure it has all of the nutrients that it needs. Sometimes if you have oily skin and you use an oil based moisturizer then it will just sit on top of your skin instead of soaking in. Try using a water based moisturizer. They will have less oils in them and can help your skin to get the nutrients that its looking for. I personally don’t use a water based moisturizer so I don’t have a good recommendation but most brands such as Neutrogena, IT Cosmetics, Clinique, and Glossier make water based moisturizers that have some great reviews. 

Don’t over wash

It can be really tempting to wash your face way more often than you need to. However, as someone that has definitely been there I highly recommend that you don’t. When my skin was really bad I would wash it a ton because I thought that it would help but it was actually contributing to my acne. 

Do wash morning and night with a good face wash

So when I say good face wash I just mean one that is right for your skin type. Sometimes store brands work perfectly well as long as it has what your skin needs. I used Noxzema for a long time and it worked really great for me but when my skin became dry it was not what my skin needed so now I use something totally different. 

Don’t wear your makeup to bed

I don’t care if you are so tired that you can’t hold your eyes open or you have come home drunk and are on the verge of passing out. DON’T DO IT. There are so many gross gross things that can happen with bacteria when you don’t take your makeup off before bed. I am, once again guilty of this and I will testify that taking your makeup off makes a difference

Do take your makeup off even if it is the only thing you do

If taking your makeup off is the only skincare thing you do before bed it is so much better than leaving it on. The majority of the time you should still be doing a good skincare routine that works for your skin but if there happens to be one night where you just can’t do it at least take off your makeup. 

There are definitely a lot more things that I could cover but I feel like these are some of the big ones and maybe in the future I will post a few more of my tips. 

Another Skincare Secret and a Personal Life Update

(Also here is a wedding picture because it is one of my favorites.)

Personal Update

So my anxiety has been in a super weird place lately so I have been trying to focus on my mental health so my beauty website has had to simmer on the back burner lately. After a near-hospital experience, several panic attacks, and a lot of anxious pacing I feel like things are starting to balance out again. It took a lot of natural oils and encouragement from my parents and Chris to get me to this point because I could not have done this without them. 

My anxiety isn’t something that I talk about a lot publicly. There are few people that I talk about it with so I like having an outlet that I can talk about it. Now, onto my skincare post! 

My Little Skincare Secret

So I only call this a secret because it is something that I didn’t know about until I was probably 19.

WASH YOUR MAKEUP BRUSHES.

This is probably is no surprise to a lot of people but to me I only washed my brushes and sponges when I felt like they were dirty. It wasn’t about my skin so it was hurting my skin. 

How often should you wash them?

So I read somewhere that brushes used for powder should be washed every 3-4 uses and brushes used for liquids should be washed every other use. I have no idea where this came from but it is about how often I wash mine.

How do I wash my brushes?

I use a Johnson & Johnson baby wash to wash my brushes. I have found that it is really easy on my skin and it smells so good. I also use a brush washing mat that I got on Amazon. I wash them and towel dry them and let them finish air drying over night. Usually by the next morning everything is dry and ready to use. 

If you aren’t in a place to spend money on a brush washing mat and brush wash then there are options! For the longest time I washed them with just my hands and unscented hand soap. This worked for me and I really only tried other things out of curiosity. I have yet to try bruh cleaner so stay tuned for that one. 

Why should I wash my brushes?

So this one is really the big question. The biggest reason is that makeup brushes can build up bacteria that can cause acne and infections. Between the moisturizer and the primer and foundation there is a lot of places for something to worm its way in and cause problems with your skin. 

When I was still suffering from bad acne I was using so many products to try to cover it up. The more that I kept my brushes clean the more that I noticed less surface level acne coming up. 

Let me know what you guys think and what your brush cleaning routine is like!