NATURAL SKINCARE DURING PREGNANCY

NATURAL BEAUTY PRODUCTS FOR PREGNANCY

Throughout this pregnancy, I've put in an extra effort to try and use more products that are safer and healthier for my skin & body. After I miscarried the beginning of this year at around 9 weeks, I felt impelled to err on the side of caution in many areas of my daily life once we got pregnant again, which included making adjustments to my skin care routine.

Let's be honest, not every product I use, especially with my makeup, is "clean" or "all natural" but I can say now more than before I am reading the labels and thinking more about what I put onto (and essentially into) my skin. There are the obvious no-no ingredients to steer away from when expecting, such as salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide, but I'm no stranger to owning products with long ingredient lists on the back of labels where I can't help but assume, if its hard to pronounce, then it surely can't be good for your skin during pregnancy.

Here are some of my favorite natural and/or organic skincare favorites I've grown a love for this pregnancy and plan to continue using postpartum. You can shop all products at the bottom of this post!

TRUE BOTANICALS

True Botanicals Basics // I originally heard of the True Botanicals line through word of mouth and social media, as they seem to be pretty well known for their top-rated oils and serums. From their preventative basics line to products that calm, clear, or renew, there is something for every skin type. Their pregnancy-friendly line is considered the same as preventative, where the brand claims to use "ingredients that no doctor would question." Love it. True Botanicals avoids using any harmful ingredients in any of their products, but they made sure to do their due diligence within testing to ensure their Basics line would be safe for both mama and baby in utero.

The Basics Set is a fabulous 4-step facial process - including a milky-like cleanser, facial mist, hydrating serum, and an oil. I can honestly say I use all four of these products both morning and night and have noticed a huge change in my skin. I typically have dry skin and get the occasional breakout (even during pregnancy) but I have stayed 98% clear since I started this regimen over summer. Also, they recently launched additional pregnancy-friendly products, including shampooconditioner, body wash, and lotion, which I'm looking forward to trying.

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Erbaviva Stretch Mark Oil & Cream // A brand I was recently introduced to earlier in this pregnancy, Erbaviva offers a wide range of products for the expecting mama & baby. The entire line is California-made, USDA certified organic, and the brand stands behind their passion for pure products.

I've become obsessed with their stretch mark preventative products, a cream and oil, and use in combination with one another. Both work at successfully keeping those soft areas around the belly, hips and tush supple and moisturized. Though I know stretch marks are pretty much due to genetics and can't always be prevented, I feel like these products have definitely helped me stay in the clear.

Be sure to check out their other wonderful products for baby & beyond! We are huge fans of their tummy rub, baby shampoo, and lip & cheek balm.

NATURAL BEAUTY DURING PREGNANCY

Tata Harper Rose Mask // Boy, do I love this gooey magic. Tata Harper's Rose Mask packs a serious glowy punch in a tiny jar. With the fluctuation of hormones this pregnancy, I've had many days where my skin is just dull and tired. After 20-30 minutes of leaving this mask on my face, I feel instantly refreshed and radiant. Also, it contains willowbank and meadowsweet, both natural sources of salicylic acid. A little goes a long way, so it's well worth the investment!

Origins Clear Improvements Mask // Another go-to I've used for the past few years, you can't really go wrong with any product by the Origins brand. This is definitely my favorite mask for the t-zone and chin areas.

Honest Hazel Eye Gels // These contoured cooling gel eye masks by Honest Hazel are designed for de-puffing, brightening dark circles, and firming the delicate skin around eyes. Basically praise hands for all of the eye problems that come in tow with motherhood.

RMS BEAUTY

RMS Beauty Un-Coverup Foundation // RMS Beauty has created the perfect dab-it-on-and-go foundation/concealer duo that I have been loving this pregnancy (because this mama needs all the quick dab-it-on-and-go I can get these days). The consistency is very lightweight, while still providing buildable mid-full coverage. I recommend pairing it with the RMS foundation brush, too, which mimics a skin-to-skin application. Definitely a product I will continue using post-baby.

RMS Beauty Makeup Wipes // These coconut oil-based wipes work seamlessly at removing dirt, oil, and makeup at the end of the day. I love to pack them while traveling, or use them after I shower each night to make sure all of my eye make up is gone. The formula is cooling for any irritation or redness, and leaves you with super moisturized skin. Worth every penny!

NATURAL BEAUTY DURING PREGNANCY

Agent Nateur Deodorant // Hands down, the best all-natural deodorant I have ever used. With product formulas handmade in France and Los Angeles, Agent Nateur uses healing & nourishing antioxidants that are free of all the bad stuff and made entirely of edible ingredients. Their holisticks (another term used for their deodorant) smell incredible and come in uber chic bottles with twist-off caps. I have the original N3 and rose scents, and looooove them both equally! 

Captain Blankenship Sea Salt Spray // My favorite hair product for when I need to jump out of the shower and go. Just spray this sea salt spray on dampened hair and let air dry. Mermaid hair don't care, thanks to Captain Blankenship.

Woodlot Calming Mist // I love Woodlot's mist for its multifunctional use on the face, body, pillows, environment, wherever you want to instill a sense of calm!

Alder Natural Hair Powder // As a toddler + pregnant mama, hair powder & I have become close besties. On a good week, I can get about two hair washes in, and Alder's Natural Hair Powder gets me through all of those in between days. The eucalyptus scent is divine and one bottle lasts forrreeeeevvveeeeer.

VITRUVI

Vitruvi Essential Oils // Full disclaimer, I didn't try essentials oils for the first time until I became a mom. Maybe it's just me, but I felt overwhelmed by memberships & pricing packages I found through some oil brands. Vitruvi had me hooked immediately. The brand makes it all so simple with seamless ordering (hello no commitments!), great pricing, and best of all, the quality and aesthetics are top notch. I have never seen such a beautiful diffuser in my life!

P.S. I've been loving these oil combos lately:

-Cedarwood + Lavender for the home

-Lavender at night before bedtime

-Peppermint + Lemon for a refresh

SHOP THIS POST //

This post was shared in partnership with most of the brands listed. All content and opinions are my own.

FAIRE TURNS TWO

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Last month we celebrated our girl's 2nd birthday. And yes, please pinch me that we've already hit two years, when in reality it seems as if it's been five minutes. It was a magical afternoon filled with close family & friends, and best of all sunshine, because our original planned date got rained out. A huge thanks to my in-laws for hosting in their wonderful home!

The theme we rolled with was a ton of fun emojis thrown together - unicorns, sunshine, stars & rainbows. We had a unicorn pool set up for the kids and this fun sprinkler, which was a huge hit (best $15 spent on Amazon!). Add in a bubble machine, colorful balloons, and pirate's booty, and it seemed we had a party! ;)

We decided on an afternoon party, which left adequate time in the morning to finish with set-up, food prep, and for Faire to sneak in a few zzz's before party time. It was the second year where we did a 2PM party time, which leaves out the pressure for having to provide guests with a full meal since it falls between lunch and dinner. But what's a party without food?! We served Chic-fil-A nuggets and wraps, and homemade pasta salad. Snacks for the kids included pirate's booty, applesauce and fruit snacks. For dessert, I made out-of-the-box funfetti cupcakes and winged my first "naked" cake for Faire. So fun, easy and totally stress-free!

Decorations were kept pretty simple throughout. This unicorn banner set separated into three garlands, which we hung in all different areas of the party. I love these cheap paper tablecloths that give a clean slate for being able to add whatever flair for your party theme, and can easily be tossed out afterwards. We purchased less than 8 bucks worth of minimal wildflowers and greenery from Trader Joe's and all of the cake stands were already owned. Also, the star paper plates and wooden utensils were leftover from Faire's 1st birthday, so it was a win that I saved $$ on them this year and they meshed with the theme perfectly.

Most of the kids at the party were a little older than Faire, so little party favors were a must. We found the sweetest unicorn paper bags by Meri Meri (on major sale at Homegoods) and filled them with a unicorn cookie, stickers, coloring book, crayons, and bubbles.

I also used Artifact Uprising square prints again, which made it easy peasy to print photos right from my phone to document Faire's second year.

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SOURCES//

Faire's Swimsuit: Rylee & Cru

'2' Mini Gold Sparkler Candle: Jollity

Square Prints: Artifact Uprising

Unicorn Pool: Pottery Barn Kids

Unicorn Paper Goods: Meri Meri

Letter Board: Letterfolk

Cookies: Cousin Cookie

Florals: Trader Joe's

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CHARLESTON GUIDE: TOP TEN WITH A TODDLER

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Towards the beginning of summer, our little family took a vacation to Charleston, South Carolina for a week full of exploring, beaching & eating our way around town. No surprise with a busy summer packed of beach travels and oh you know, growing another human, I'm just now getting around to sharing our city guide from the trip!

There's really no better feeling than having this rare travel time together as a family without any agenda, just a handful of really great recommendations from friends and a whole lot of flying by the seat of our pants. But traveling with a toddler meant all expectations and most parts of a "routine" got left at home, which my husband and I were totally on board with. Plus, having our own car made traveling at our own leisure so awesome, and made it super conducive to car napping.

It truly was an amazing week mixed with both on-the-go and relaxing time, and I'm thrilled to be able to share our favorite spots from the week. Here are my top 10's on places to explore & eat, while towing around your toddler:

EXPLORE//

1 | Sullivan's Island Beach: Hands down, our best days were spent at Sullivan's Island. We thoroughly enjoyed the serene and calm waters, and it's super wide, flat beach, filled with tot-friendly tide pools.

2 | Charleston Waterfront Park & Pineapple Fountain: Located right in the heart of downtown Charleston, this was a great activity our whole family enjoyed during the hot morning sun. The Pineapple Fountain is a wading fountain, perfect for cooling off, and there's also a splash pad and beautiful views of the harbor.

3 | Rainbow Row: A row of stunning homes in beautiful shades of every color of the rainbow, and there's a cute playground close by with a walking path that strolls right along the Battery. Also, a great photo op for you & your littles!

4 | Children's Museum of the Lowcountry: A fun place to let the kids run around, especially on those hot days or rainy afternoons. Faire loved the grocery room and the indoor wood playground.

5 | South Carolina Aquarium: This was top on our list for the first rainy day, but fortunately we had beautiful weather all week that we didn't get a chance to visit. Although, I've heard nothing but two thumbs up and it should certainly be included on your list.

6 | Mt. Pleasant Memorial Waterfront Park: A big, shaded playground nestled under the Ravenel Bridge, this was the perfect afternoon spot to visit which wasn't far from our Airbnb. There's a fun pier full of swings and long walking paths.

7 | Isle of Palms: Named for a reason, it's well worth the drive through town. Even if only to catch a glimpse of all those pretty palms lined in rows.

8 | Angel Oak Tree: Definitely touristy, but a fun morning or afternoon activity. And it's entirely free for everyone! It should be worth noting that you can't actually climb on the tree and visitors tend to stay more on the quiet side.

9 | Charleston Water Taxi: The water taxi links Mt. Pleasant to downtown Charleston and is a great way to catch a different view of the city. It runs hourly and kids 3 and under are free!

10 | Shopping: It's no secret, there's tons of spectacular shopping in Charleston. Since we were traveling with Faire, it wasn't a huge priority to go shopping, but I did my research and gathered a handful of shops that were highly recommended to visit. Candlefish (the most beautiful library of candles and even a small, curated section for kids - we splurged on this mermaid doll for Faire), Mac & Murphy (a stationer's dream, I snagged a few occasional cards for friends and the sweetest floral print for my mantle), Charleston City Market (it's a great open air market where you can find everything from sweetgrass baskets to locally-made gifts).

EAT & SIP//

1 | Callie's Hot Little Biscuit: Worth. The. Wait. It's best if you are traveling with your partner and a stroller, leave one of you with the kids outside while the other one orders inside. We learned the hard way that the narrow restaurant is not stroller-friendly. But, more importantly, the biscuits and jelly were incredible!

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2 | The Obstinate Daughter: A Sullivan's Island favorite! We snagged an empty table on their new-ish outside patio and had the best pizza and frites. I highly recommend the Old Danger pizza topped with a soft farm fresh egg!

3 | Black Tap Coffee: We really indulged on our caffeine all week and made sure to stop here 3 or 4 times. We also grabbed a bag of whole beans to bring back to Richmond, which we made the huge mistake of only buying one bag.

4 | Sugar Bakeshop: A quaint little small-batch cupcake & sweets shop covered in blankets of ivy, nestled away a few blocks from downtown. My favorite cupcake was the vanilla blueberry!

5 | The Daily: Only the best almond milk iced latte I've had ever. Also, the same owners as The Butcher & Bee, another local spot where you can grab delicious locally-sourced food.

6 | Taco Boy: I'm pretty much always craving tacos when we travel, so this spot became a quick favorite. I'd label this a trendy, cheap and quick bite, but with a fun atmosphere and huge outdoor patio. Lucky for us, this was the one meal all week where we had a snoozing toddler throughout the whole lunch. A+ fish tacos!

7 | Leon's Oyster Shop: A top recommended restaurant, close to downtown and majorly kid-friendly. Get the fried chicken, crispy catfish sandwich, or the Siam salad.

8 | Poe's Tavern: One of our best nights was spent scooping up fish tacos & nachos to-go and heading straight to Sullivan's Island for a dinner picnic on the beach. It was absolute perfection.

9 | Jeni's Ice Cream: Have you even seen a go-to list without Jeni's Ice Cream? Nope. The line was so long, but SO worth it. Faire was pretty antsy by the time we reached the front of the line, but mama's poached pear sorbet & the sticker roll at the end of the bar saved the day!

10 | Darling Oyster Bar: Well, we didn't get the chance to dine in this darling beauty right on King Street, but it made the list because it's apparently that good. It will be first on our list next time we visit.

For those curious about our Airbnb - this is a link to the charming renovated carriage home we rented in Mt. Pleasant. I totally recommend this area, as it was a short 10 minute drive into downtown Charleston, but tucked away from the hustle and bustle, which in my mind was perfect for having a toddler in tow. Given the home is on the owner's property, we felt super safe, but still able to maintain a sense of privacy. Also, being in early pregnancy during this point, I was pretty fatigued most of the day and staying downtown towards the nightlife couldn't have been further from my ideal vacay.

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