A Beauty & Lifestyle Blog

Thursday, July 18, 2019

It's The Small Things A Guy Does That Let's You Know He Loves You


Listen, if you are wondering whether the guy you are with is truly the one for you, know this...

It's the small things he does that will let you know he loves you.
He doesn't have to do anything extravagant to prove his love for you, such as serenading you in the park, shouting his love from the rooftops, or taking out giant billboard ads with declarations of affection.

You don't have to make him prove his love by getting him to search here for the finest diamonds, or by asking him to open his wallet when you're at the shopping mall.

While he might still do those things to show that he loves you, as we said, it is the small things you need to look out for.

It's during the moments when you catch him looking at you
You might be sitting together watching television, and you notice his eyes are fixated on you rather than the screen. You might both be with a group of friends, but you might notice he spends more time looking at you than the people you are with. It's during those moments when no matter how full the room is, and no matter how many distractions there might be, he is entirely focused on you, and nothing else will sway him.

It's when he prefers to spend time with you over his friends
You shouldn't forbid your boyfriend from seeing his friends, but when he actively chooses you over them, no matter how attractive their social suggestions are, you know that he probably loves you. He is making you his priority, and when he's sacrificing his time to be with you, despite missing opportunities to hit the bar, play video games, or watch the big game with his mates, then you know that you are the focus in his life.

It's when he actively listens to you
When you're talking to him about your day, he doesn't just nod his head in an attempt to make you think he cares about what you're saying. When you offload your worries and cares to him, he doesn't have one eye on you and the other on his phone. When you speak to him, he actively listens, genuinely caring about what you are saying with interest and concern. He wants to know more about you. He wants to help where he can. He listens to what you say, and down the line he remembers what you have said; another sign that he is probably in love with you.

It's when he shows you he cares about your life
He encourages you to pursue your ambitions in life, even when you consider sacrificing them for him. He supports you in your decisions and helps you think about other options if he's worried you are going wrong. He cares about your health and helps you give up your worst habits. He wants the best for you, and actively takes steps to help you achieve your goals. It's as if you were an extension of him, as by making you feel complete, he feels complete also.

So, don't worry if he hasn't yet bought you a fancy diamond ring. Sometimes, it is the small things he does that truly proves his love, and if any of the above is true in your relationship, then you know you probably have the right guy for you in your life.

Let us know what you think.
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Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Murad Hydration Review: AHA/BHA Exfoliating Cleanser, Prebiotic 4-in-1 MultiCleanser, Hydro-Dynamic Quenching Essence, Nutrient-Charged Water Gel, Prebiotic 3-in-1 MultiMist, Night Fix Enzyme Treatment

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. I get commission for purchases or clicks made through links in this post.

Murad PR Samples/ Some Murad Purchased On My Own (Not Sponsored): Last month, Murad sent me some products from their Hydration collection. I was so impressed with those products, that I ran out and purchased more from their Hydration Collection. I wanted to see how well all the products worked together. I've been using these products for about a month now, and I'm ready to give you my honest thoughts on each.


Sweet-Bittersweet-NotSweet
supersweet(run & buy it) sweet(really good,buy it) bittersweet(ok, issues)not sweet(not good,don't buy this stuff)

Murad AHA/BHA Exfoliating Cleanser - Supersweet
(can be purchased at ULTA, MURAD, Nordstrom, Macys, Dermstore, Harrods, Birchbox)
The first time I tried this cleanser, I knew it was a winner. It's NOT an everyday cleanser you guys. You only use this cleanser 2-3 times a week. Its an exfoliating cleanser with a combination of AHAs and BHAs (salicylic, lactic and glycolic acids). I have dry, sensitive and reactive skin. This cleanser DID NOT whatsoever irritate me, turn me red or dry me out. My skin felt soft, smooth and exfoliated. So I don't see this cleanser being a problem for ANY skin type. Besides the acids this cleanser also has jojoba beads to manually exfoliate dull skin as well. So its a combination of both chemical and manual exfoliation. There's also sodium PCA which helps skin to retain moisture and elasticity. This cleanser in combination with your regular cleanser should work really well together. I plan on incorporating this product into my skincare regime. Another really good exfoliate by Murad is their Skin Smoothing Polish (review here). 

Murad Prebiotic 4-in-1 MultiCleanser - Bittersweet
(can be purchased at ULTA, Murad, Nordstrom, Macys, Dermstore, Sephora)
This struggled. This is a makeup-removing cleanser with prebiotics. Its suppose to remove dirt, oil and water proof makeup. It removes basic things, such as your foundation, blush, lipstick and eye shadow. I just tried Urban Decay's NEW Waterproof Perversion Mascara & Eyeliner (review soon) and this cleanser struggled to remove it. It took like 3-4 times to get it completely off. Its suppose to nourish with prebiotics and deeply hydrate. It's ok, but I need something stronger when it comes to makeup removal. I much prefer Clinique's Take The Day Off Cleansing Balm and Drunk Elephant's Slaai Makeup Melting Butter Cleanser. But if you wear basic makeup, this will work for you.

Murad Hydro-Dynamic Quenching Essence - Sweet
(can be purchased at Ulta, Murad, Nordstrom, Macys, Sephora, Harrods)
I haven't tried many essences, but this is a good one. Every face essence I've seen has been in liquid form. This is more like a lightweight cream. I love the packaging. Its housed inside an enclosed pump. When you apply it to your face it gradually sinks in.  What I noticed after using this product was soft, supple and plumped skin. How does this compare to (the only other essence I've tried) Fresh Black Tea Kombucha Tea Facial Treatment Essence? Fresh has an edge on it in two ways (I like Fresh more). It doesn't take long for the Fresh essence to sink into the skin. The Fresh essence INSTANTLY plumps your skin. The Murad essence does a fantastic job ... my skin looked great and hydrated ... but if you want instant results (plumping & hydrating) or feel you need something extra then go with Fresh. My super dry skin needs a tad more hydration & plumping, so I'm sticking with Fresh. The Murad essence will be fine for normal and combination skin types. Dry skin types may need more. This essence has Mexican Blue Agave Leaf Extract (attract & retain water), Glycolic Acid (exfoliate and open pathways to retain water) and a botanical blend of watermelon, apple and lentil (prevention of dryness, flakiness and rough patches).

Murad Nutrient Charged Water Gel - Bittersweet
 (can be purchased at Ulta, Nordstrom, Selfridges, Dermstore, Murad, Macys, Sephora, Harrods)
This is a moisturizer. Murad states that this provides "lightweight hydration that last for days". They go on to say its an, "Intensely hydrating oil-free water gel [that] contains revolutionary Cumulative Hydration-Release Technology that instantly locks moisture to skin and increases retention for up to 5 days." Let me share my experience! It's a pink lavender gel-cream. It felt really good going into the skin. My dry skin drank it up! I felt it gave lightweight moisture to my skin. I just felt I needed more moisture and that this did not provide enough for me. For dry skin types, I don't feel this will be enough. Maybe for normal & combination types. This has a lot of good stuff in it such as Vitamins B3, B5, B6, B9 and E (dryness, wrinkles and soothe skin). It has silicon, iron, zinc, copper and magnesium (skin tone & texture). And it also helps restore the skin barrier. With all of this however, it just wasn't enough for my dry skin.

Murad Prebiotic 3-in-1 MultiMist - Sweet
 (can be purchased at Ulta, Murad, Nordstrom, Macys, Dermstore, Sephora)
The 3-in-1 is that it HYDRATES your skin, REPLENISHES your skin with prebiotics and PRIMES & SETS your makeup. Let me take each individually! It provides superb hydration for your skin. I love the packaging and nozzle because it doesn't wet your skin up. When I sprayed this on my skin, it felt instantly hydrated. My skin soaked it up, because its not heavy. Its like droplets of water. The replenishing factor? It's infused with lots of good things to promote enrichment of good bacteria. My skin looked plump. It had a glow. All of these things are great for priming your skin before makeup application. The only issue I have with this is as a makeup setter. It conflicted a bit with my makeup. It kind of moved things. So I wouldn't use it that way! But anything BEFORE makeup application will be good. Another face mist that I just absolutely LOVE is the Fresh Vitamin Nectar Antioxidant Glow Water. It is so good!

Murad Night Fix Enzyme Treatment - Bittersweet
 (can be purchased at Nordstrom, Dermstore, Ulta, Sephora, Murad, Macys)
This treatment works like a sleeping mask (after applying a moisturizer) and is suppose to repair your skin overnight. You're suppose to wake up refreshed, awakened, well rested and more hydrated. This is a medium weight cream. It feels good to the skin and adheres to the skin well. It won't mess up your pillowcases. It doesn't interfere with your sleep. I woke up to smooth, soft and hydrated skin. But there were no bells or whistle for me. Its good, but I feel there's better out there. As far as night-time treatments I prefer Sunday Riley's Good Genes, Fresh Vitamin Nectar Glow Juice, REN Radiance Perfection Serum and Glow Daily Vitamin C Gel Cream, Drunk Elephants TLC Framboos Glycolic Night Serum & Virgin Marula Luxury Facial Oil (together) and Kiehls Midnight Recovery Concentrate and even Bobbi Brown's Vitamin Enriched Face Base depending on your skin's needs. Those are my thoughts! I hope this helps in your decision making.
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Tuesday, July 16, 2019

Future-Proof Your Health And Beauty

While it’s important to embrace your natural beauty, we all know it takes a bit of work to maintain our looks as we age. They say that prevention is better than cure, and that is certainly true when it comes to taking care of your health and beauty.

The lifestyle changes you make now can make a big difference years from now, so take a look at these tips for future-proofing your health and beauty do that you can grow old gracefully.

Image Credit: Unsplash under Creative Commons

Be good to your skin
With so many products on the market these days. It’s difficult not to maintain a good skincare routine. But great skin isn’t just achieved through a three-step regime; there are other factors to think about. Do you drink enough water? Dehydrated skin can make those fine lines appear much more severely, as well as take the elasticity out of your skin. Nourish your skin inside and out, and don’t forget to use sun protection - sun damage can be your worst enemy.

Go for your health checks
Many people will only go to the doctor when there’s something seriously wrong. And while that’s great for freeing up waiting rooms, it is important that you keep up regular health checks to make sure everything is as it should be.

Eye tests to hearing check-ups are important for detecting problems early on, and even if there is a problem, there are better solutions available for early detection. A regular dental check-up can pick up unhealthy teeth and gums and help ensure you’re not left toothless by retirement!

You should also consider ways you can protect things like your hearing and sight. While glasses, contacts and Miracle-Ear hearing aids are available - you could avoid the need for them by keeping the volume down on your devices and making sure you’re not glued to a screen constantly. Learn to make more sensible choices; it could help you more than you know.

Stay fit for all the benefits
Exercise is one of the easiest things you can do to protect your health and beauty as you get older. Staying fit keeps you strong, helps you tone up and can keep you looking younger. If you’re looking for the fountain of youth - exercise is it!

The food you eat can also make a big difference to your health. A diet rich in protein is ideal for healthy skin, hair and nails, so make sure you get your fill. It’s also a good idea to cut back on the junk food, take outs and dinners out. Cooking for yourself more can help you embrace more of the good stuff and helps you avoid the additives and nasties that are found in so many ready-made food products.

It’s easy to take your health for granted, but making those active choices will help you to maintain your mental and physical health, with your radiant beauty making for an excellent added bonus. Are you thinking about your future health and beauty? There’s no better time to start than now.
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4 Things A Guy Can Get Wrong When Choosing An Engagement Ring


Some guys get it right when they propose; they go out of their way to make the event monumental. After all, it should become one of the most treasured memories of your entire life. The proposal should set the tempo for the entire marriage. It should be thoughtful, and fundamentally, it should reflect something about your combined personalities.

One of the biggest areas of the proposal to get right is the ring. But there are many ways that a guy can go completely wrong when it comes to selecting the perfect engagement ring.

Not Doing His Homework
If he’s done his homework, he will know your tastes in jewelry. If you are someone that goes for subtlety, you’ll feel uncomfortable with a large rock and lots of ornate design. He should be paying attention to the rings you own and wear. Thinking about your overall fashion style and trying to match the ring to your tastes.

Not Knowing The Size
It needs to be the right size. He can’t just guess your ring size. Yes, rings can be resized, but that’s not ideal as it means that it will be long before you can show it off.

Obviously, all of your fingers are different sizes, so borrowing a ring that you wear might not cut it, he’d need to know that it fits the right finger.

He could enlist the help of one of your friends. Much easier if they use some sneaky ways to find it out without giving the game away.

The other way would be to use a string around your finger while you sleep, and measure the string.

Not Hiding The Evidence
If he’s going to propose, and allow it to be a surprise, he needs to make sure he hides the ring, the receipts, and any credit card statements away.

If you're the kind of couple that share all of their finances already, he needs to come up with some really good excuses as to where the money has gone, assuming you knew it existed already.

Not Thinking About The Wedding Ring
Your wedding ring will need to sit beside the engagement ring, and the two of them will need to fit together well and look good with each other.

Having an idea of the type of wedding band that you’ll end up getting will be important for him when choosing a ring. He needs to have thought about this major point before buying. If he’s wise, he’ll have a chat with a ring specialist at the jewelers, and get some advice.

Not Paying For Insurance
Engagement rings can be costly, but there are quite a few things that could go wrong with them. They could easily get damaged if they are knocked or caught on something, and you don’t want to lose any stones. The other side to the problem is if you lose the ring ever or it gets stolen. By paying a small amount, he can provide you the peace of mind if something upsetting does happen to your ring.
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Real Techniques 4 Mini Miracle Complexion Sponges Review

Not Sponsored: I'm a huge fan of makeup sponges. I use them more than I do my makeup brushes. I love the Real Techniques Miracle Complexion Sponges. I use them to apply my foundation, bronzer concealer, and contour. Real Techniques also has Mini Miracle Complexion Sponges (Walgreens, ULTA, Kohl's, Target). I've been skeptical about mini sponges. Do you REALLY need them? I just thought of them as an extra way to make money. There was a sale on these, so I decided to give them a chance (plus I was curious). When I got these, I thought they were really small (to the eye). I thought my fingers would barely be able to hold one. LOL Well, they are the PERFECT fit! If you look at my gif below, these fit perfectly for your under-eye area. That's where I apply my Becca Under Eye Brightening Corrector and Tarte Shape Tape Concealer. These mini sponges are gentler and work the product in better (for the under eye area) than the larger sponge. You have a lot more precision and it doesn't move the product like the larger sponge. I'm also using LESS product with these mini sponges. I use the angle tip to apply my concealer. There's also a pointy end to this sponge. This is really good when you're contouring your nose or applying highlighter to your nose, cheeks, cupids bow etc. Real Techniques states you can use these for foundation and powder, but I think they're a little small for those things. I much rather use the larger sponge. I can also see using these for blush application. As you can tell, I really love these. There are so many uses for them. Don't hesitate about purchasing them. Give them a try. Glad I did!

Sweet-Bittersweet-NotSweet
supersweet(run & buy it) sweet(really good,buy it) bittersweet(ok, issues)not sweet(not good,don't buy this stuff) 
  Real Techniques 4 Mini Miracle Complexion Sponges are Supersweet

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Monday, July 15, 2019

My Nordstrom Anniversary Sale Early Access Purchases

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. I get commission for purchases or clicks made through links in this post.

Not Sponsored: I wanted to share with you guys, what I purchased during this years Nordstrom's Early Access Anniversary Sale. 1. I use to detest v-necks, but now they look great on me. So I picked up this Halogen V-Neck Cashmere Sweater. I like that its not too heavy. It has cute side slits. I think it will be a great staple for my wardrobe. 2. Aquatalia! Aquatalia! I've been lusting after their boots and booties for awhile. They always look so chic :) So my splurge for the sale were these Aquatalia Faria Weatherproof Bootie(s) in black. I love the sleekness of them and what a great buckle on the side. 3. Bobbi Brown's Vitamin Enriched Face Base. ONE JAR is $60 you guys! During this sale, you can get TWO for $60! I use this stuff day & night. I sing its praises (my review). There's no way I would pass this deal up. My dry skin LOVES it! 4. I also purchased Bobbi Brown's The Essential Deluxe Eyeshadow and Face Palette. I love neutral makeup. I love everyday makeup. I thought this palette was so pretty, so I scooped it up. 5. I'm trying to build up my lounge-wear and night wear, so I purchased these BP Cozy Top, Cozy Shorts and Joggers. You have to purchase them separately and there are a couple of patterns to choose from, but I loved the blue vintage heart design. I thought they were so cute. I love FUN things to relax and lounge around in. So those are the things I purchased you guys! I hope you find some treasures of your own in Nordstrom's Early Access Anniversary Sale (July 12-18, 2019).

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What Are The Best Months To Get Married?

Since weddings are typically planned up to a year in advance, it’s often important to pick and choose the right season to get married based on your personal tastes and situation. So in this article, we’re going to break down the benefits of getting married during different seasons.

Autumn
  • Not a demanding season which means you can find some excellent bargains
  • Great balance of sunlight and evening which makes for a great setting
  • Plenty of opportunities in terms of venues

  • Sadly, it can get quite wet depending on your location
  • Guests may get cold at night
  • Autumn weddings tend to be focused indoors

Winter
  • Amazing for festive weddings when tied with Christmas or New Year’s
  • You get the chance to take photos with a sunset backdrop
  • Often much cheaper services 

  • Much higher chance of rain
  • Can get very chilly at times
  • Weddings are usually indoors

Spring
  • Warm weather with some minor breezes
  • Excellent indoor and outdoor options
  • Not as demanding on suppliers and other services

  • Fairly high chance of rain
  • Temperatures can drop at night
  • Cloudy days can be a problem

Summer
  • Very long days with a lot of sunshine
  • Lowest chance of rain
  • Excellent choice of flowers and decorations (we’ve added an infographic below to showcase this!)

  • Can be a little too hot and sweaty for some people especially if you’re in a suit or wedding gown all day
  • Arguably the most expensive season
  • Most popular season meaning it’s difficult to book on short notice


Infographic from Claddagh Rings
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Aveda Cherry Almond Hand And Body Wash & Body Lotion Review

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. I get commission for purchases or clicks made through links in this post.

Not Sponsored: The Aveda Cherry Almond Hand and Body Wash & Body Lotion on Nordstrom's website caught my eye. I love cherry and almond products. These are free from silicones, parabens, gluten, synthetic fragrance, petrolatum, talc and mineral oil. Aveda is also a cruelty-free brand. I'm doing a better job paying attention to those things ;) I initially thought the cherry was like cherries you eat, but this is Aveda. Aveda is plant based, so this cherry is based on cherry blossoms. I love looking at and smelling flowers, but I rarely purchase floral body wash or perfumes. I'm a gourmand girl! Whether you love floral body products or not, I think everyone will love these. These are scented with cherry blossom extract and sweet almond oil (derived from the ripe seed kernels of the almond tree). Both products are 97% naturally derived. The scent is fresh and has a natural sweetness. It's soft and not overbearing or powerful. It's also not F-L-O-R-A-L. To me its definitely more almond with a touch of cherry blossom. A very nice mix. Let me start with the body wash. These bottles are pretty slim, so i was worried that you wouldn't get much. But you only need 2-4 pumps of the body wash in your wash cloth. Add a little water and it lathers really well (for your entire body). The body wash cleans and moisturizes your skin well. It's perfect for Summer! It's lightweight and the scent will definitely lift your mood. I believe in scents and aromatherapy. The lotion (of course) has the same scent. It's a creamy lotion. It provides lightweight moisture. Again, perfect for the Summer season. When you apply the lotion, expect a little stick but it quickly dries down. If you're looking for a lot of moisture or have super dry skin, this will not work for you. This only provides light moisture. I have dry skin, so I just apply a little more. This wouldn't work for me during the winter months, but it's a nice skin treat for the Summer months. If you love this scent, Aveda also makes a Cherry Almond Softening Shampoo (Nordstrom, Harrods) and Cherry Almond Softening Conditioner (Nordstrom, Harrods).

Sweet-Bittersweet-NotSweet
supersweet(run & buy it) sweet(really good,buy it) bittersweet(ok, issues)not sweet(not good,don't buy this stuff) 
  Aveda Cherry Almond Hand and Body Wash & Body Lotion are Sweet


Aveda Cherry Almond Hand And Body Wash

Aveda Cherry Almond Body Lotion
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Friday, July 12, 2019

Working From Home? Here's How To Stay Secure


Whether you’re an employee or operating as a self-employed freelancer, staying secure when you’re working from home. Although the internet has enabled increasing numbers of workers to undertake tasks from home, it’s vital that they have a secure portal from which to do so. This means securing your hardware physically and protecting your data and software online.

With increasing regulation regarding data security, it’s essential to take proactive measures when it comes to online security. If you’re working from home and you want to stay secure, try these top tips…

Use antivirus software
If you're employed, your employer may supply you with a laptop pre-loaded with their preferred anti-virus software. If so, make sure you keep the software updated and functional at all times. It may even be written into your contract that you maintain a secure device, so be sure to adhere to the terms set out by your employer.

Alternatively, if you’re self-employed or given free rein over your choice of antivirus, choose one which suits your needs. Many people worry that anti-virus software will slow their device down or conflict with other programs. However, there are a variety of advanced anti-virus systems which can be configured to work alongside other software. If necessary, try various anti-virus software until you find one that’s right for you.


Only download from reputable sources
From time-to-time, you may need to download software to carry out certain tasks. If so, you should only download from reputable sources. Hackers may try and imitate big name brands with a view to duping you into downloading malware, so don’t get caught out.

Many users were wary when trying to download Adobe Flash Player for Mac, for example, because hackers were routinely placing false links online. However, instead of following links or pop-ups, visit the Adobe website and download from there. Whilst many sites now operate using HTML5, as opposed to Flash, there are still websites which rely on this software, so it may be necessary for you to install it.

Whilst this is particularly relevant to installing Flash Player for Mac, it applies to any type of software. Whenever you need to install something new, verify the source and ensure you’re getting the real deal.

Keep your workplace secure
Just because you’re working from home, don’t overlook basic physical security measures. Adding a lock to your home office can help to prevent anyone from accessing your hardware, so it’s often advisable. If your home was broken into, for example, a lock on your home office could prevent thieves from getting their hands on your equipment, and accessing sensitive company information.

If you’ve purchased your own equipment for working at home, check whether you’ll need a separate insurance policy or whether your home and contents insurance will cover any losses or accidental damage. However careful you are, it only takes seconds for equipment to be damaged, and having the right insurance in place can minimize replacement costs and ensure you’re able to return to working from home quickly and efficiently.
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5 Simple Steps To Increasing Your Brand Image

Every business owner understands that having a reliable, trusted brand is essential for your company to be successful and stay successful. If your brand isn't known and trusted by your target audience, you have no hope of making it. It will become almost impossible to increase your customer base and sales. You need to ensure that you have a strategy in place for increasing your brand image, have a look here at some of the simple steps you can take to improve your:

Photo by rawpixel.com from Pexels

Use Influencers
Influencers are people who have an impact on what people buy or follow on the web. Often they can be celebrities, bloggers, and just ordinary people who have a significant following on platforms such as Instagram. These are your best friends when it comes to having a brand image on social media. And social media is one of the best ways you can market your company nowadays. Have a go at inviting relevant influencers, attesting and review your product and services for free in return for posting about them or showing themselves using them on their social platforms. Depending on how many followers they have, it might be worth offering payment too. Another option is to think about sponsoring influencers, so when they go to significant social events, your brand name is getting heard and seen.

Use Branding Within The Office
It's no good getting your brand name out there and heard of if you're going to neglect the fact that you can use free marketing from your office supplies. Make sure you have software available to your staff where they can access up to date brand logos, banners, and adverts to include in emails, newsletters, business cards, and even letters they send out. Looking at how you manage corporate brand assets with Templafy can put you on the right track with enabling your staff to preach and look after the company brand through their everyday work.

Use Branded Packaging
Think about any orders you may have received lately, were they branded? Places such as Amazon are fantastic at this as they want everyone to know your package has come from them, so they put it on the box! Branding your packages can help to increase your brand image overall and increase the positive feedback you get from your customers. Have a go at creating your unique packaging and see what difference it makes. Not only this branded packaging offers an additional touchpoint to the value that your brand provides and helps you stand out on the market. How many of your competitors offer this?

SEO Research
A massive part of branding includes being familiar with how SEO works for your company. Most people searching online won't go past the first pages of results, and why would they when they are provided with a page full of relevant information, products, and services that meet their requirements. This is where SEO plays the best role, Thie idea behind SEO is to make your pages reach the top of the search results and to do this you may at times need help from a professional, depending on the size of your company you may outsource or recruit someone in-house. You should be researching SEO strategies that are related to your niche only. Something to consider looking into is using a tool that allows you to see what phrases people are looking for most.

Pay Attention To Social Media
Platforms such as Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter hold a lot of power when it comes to a brand image. We've already touched on the use of influencers, but a picture can speak a thousand words, and social media is becoming a more and more powerful tool to use for any business. You can promote via Instagram using a picture and link it to your other accounts too, it's all about engagement and gaining a following so, make sure you are using relevant, exciting and engaging content that your consumers are going to enjoy and find useful. The best bit is that a lot of it is free to use so what better way to increase your brand image than with Something that is going to be cost-effective and modern.

If you're a smaller company or a start-up, you may want to consider outsourcing social media to a social media manager. There is an abundance of freelancers now doing this, so you're bound to find someone relevant to your product and services, the reason you would look to do this is that it can be extremely time-consuming running social media accounts.

These five strategies are fantastic, essential ways to increase your brand image and help your company become successful. Which are you going to try first? Please share your experience in the comments section.
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Thursday, July 11, 2019

Protecting Your Teen: A Guide

As a parent or guardian, there’s no doubt that bringing up teens can be tough. The phase between 13-19 years is usually full of difficulties. Children in this age gap are going through many physical, mental and emotional changes. Internet addiction, anxiety, depression, teen suicide, drug, and alcohol abuse are some of the many challenges facing our kids. It’s scary to think of how vulnerable teens are to danger yet they struggle to strive for independence and seek peer acceptance. One of the hardest questions in parenting is ‘How do we protect our teens without being overprotective?’ Here are some ways of protecting your child through their teenage years.

 Image Source: Pixabay

Effective and Open Communication
Parents need to feel free talking about sensitive topics like dating, bullying, and sex with their teens. A positive connection is built by listening and being emotionally present. Parents who openly communicate with their children are more likely to receive an open response. Initiating discussions creates a comfortable environment for your teen. You need to approach the problems with empathy and love during this difficult phase of their lives. This is also vital in developing their communication styles. Children who learn to express themselves openly early in life depict the same openness in communication as adults.

Talk about Substance Abuse
Your children need to be informed to make appropriate decisions in life. The best indicator for child future behaviour is parent behaviour. Do you abuse drugs yourself? Children observe their caregivers and do as they do, not as they are told. It is important to look around for the apple tree before picking up on the apple. If you abuse drugs consider stopping as this could set a bad example to your child.

Also, do not wait until a problem arises to address it. Be specific by explaining to them how alcohol or drugs affect the human body. Discuss the dos and don’ts of drinking. Set reasonable rules and converse on the consequences. Moreover, give your child advice to get out of a risky situation when caught up in one. Your involvement will assist your child stay safe.

Understand what substance abuse is so that you can teach your children the risks with participating it in.

Monitor their Online Life
Ensuring a teen’s online security can be overwhelming. The threats teens face are real. They include cyber bullying, paedophiles, hackers and more. Statistics show that children who have social media conversations with their parents are more aware of the threats, hence avoiding them. Parents should first start by educating themselves by trying out new applications and researching on terms they do not understand. Follow your kids on social media but do not stalk them. Lastly, use parental controls and regularly check their privacy settings.

Seek Professional Help
Today, professional help is easily accessible. It is important to encourage other platforms of seeking help even in the parent's absence. Parents should not hesitate to seek and accept help from experts. There are a variety of resources available such as igniteteentreatment.com. The Ignite Treatment Centres offer treatment programs like depression treatment, gaming addiction treatment among others.

The most productive way of protecting your teen against possible threats is by creating a healthy relationship with them. They crave for support, attention, and acceptance. Teens are prone to reach out for help more when they feel safe.
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4 Dream Travel Destinations

The summer is upon us, so we have been daydreaming about travel and vacations here. There are so many places that we would love to visit, so many wonders for us to see and explore in this world. It’s been hard to narrow them down, but we have come up with our top 4 dream travel destinations, the places that we really want to get to this year.

Florida
This one is on so many people’s wish lists, young and old. How many children would love to go and visit Disney World? Or maybe the Florida Keys and their sandy white beaches are beckoning you? Or perhaps you are yearning to rent a yacht in Miami and set sail around Millionaires’ Row? Florida has so many wonderful possibilities, it is no wonder that this one comes up time and time again.

Image Source: Pixabay

Italy
The food, the art, the music, the culture, the romance, the sights...need we go on? Italy appeals to the romantic in all of us, and it is practically bursting with history that begs to be seen and enjoyed.

Maybe you will head to the canals of Venice for a gondola ride and St Mark’s Square. You can’t fail but to be mesmerized by all of the notes and messages below Shakespeare's famous balcony in Verona. Or perhaps the Uffizi Gallery in Florence is calling to you. Take the time to drink it all in and enjoy some wonderful food whilst you are there.

Egypt
Situated in North Africa, Egypt is bursting with ancient history and culture. The pyramids are not to be missed and then you might want to cruise down the River Nile, marvel at Mount Sinai and visit The Karnak Temple. You will be spoilt for choice when choosing your must-see sights here and this is without throwing in a touch of relaxation.

Egypt has year-round sunshine, so you will want to factor in some pool time here. Book into a hotel on the shores of the Red Sea and enjoy a little luxury in between all of that culture.

England
There is something so appealing about England. We know that it is packed with history, with castles and ruins calling out to us. We could visit Stonehenge for a sense of spirituality and wonder, go for the hustle and bustle of Oxford Street in London and then swing by Windsor Castle for a spot of culture.

We could easily spend all of our break taking in the sights of the capital, yet we would want to see the pretty countryside and we must make it to the coast. Rugged coastlines, pretty beaches and quaint seaside towns all sound so tempting, we could spend a month there!

Are any of these travel destinations on your list? Maybe you are planning to visit one of them this year, or perhaps we have got you adding them to your wish list? As long as you make sure that you are traveling safely, then the world really is your oyster, so where will you go first?
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Why You Should Never Discount Your Ambitions

Image Source: Pexels

You deserve to steward strong ambitions. Of course, don’t artificially force yourself towards them, but if you have a dream, don’t discount it. Too many people believe that they can never achieve their major dreams because they’re not ‘good-looking enough’ or ‘smart enough’ or perhaps not born into the right circumstances. Of course, it might have been easier for Kylie Jenner to release her make-up kit thanks to the family she was born into, but that shouldn’t discourage someone hoping to do the same. Good products should inspire all of us.

You should never discount yourself or your ambitions. This is because most of us only have a few things we would really like to do, and if we tell ourselves we can’t, it can be hard to try and rekindle that fire. This means that in order to actualize yourself, at least considering moving forward in that direction can be amazing. But you might not be sold on those platitudes as of yet. That’s why we hope to go into further detail, and help you begin to soften that hard stance you might take:

You Have The Same Capacity
You have the same hours in the day as everyone else. You are as entitled to confidence in your ideas, the same as everyone else. You can learn skills such as how to manage a team, how to sell your idea and how to talk with designers, the same as everyone else. You have the ability to learn through failure and be humble in your success, the same as everyone else. You can rent commercial property for your business idea and register it in the first place, the same as anyone else. The same business laws that apply to any small business starting out apply to you. When you stop thinking that you are uniquely in a disadvantageous position, you can start looking for opportunities rather than things that can hold you back. A key part of this is realizing that everyone makes mistakes, and while business can be ultra-competitive, being slightly wrong doesn’t necessarily mean the death of your dreams. You’ll likely learn this as you progress, the same as everyone else.

You Never Know How Important You Could Be
It’s important to consider the potential that might reside within you. You might have the talent to keep a team, even under stressful load, together and happy in their work. You might have the best ability to market a product under your name that you really care about. You may have a natural knack for learning business progression and understanding safety policies. You might have an idea that could innovate and revolutionize the industry you hope to be part of. But without trying or stopping early, you’ll never know.

You’ll Always Wonder
It’s much better to try, fail, claw yourself back, try again, succeed, and maybe even fail again than it is to wonder if you could have ever made a go of things. If you don’t, that regret can often last for some time.

With this advice, we hope you’ll be much less inclined to discount your ambitions. Because if you don’t try, how will you ever know?
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Business Tips: How You Can Target Fellow Citygoers

Living in the city had many advantages, it's one of the best places to do business and experience business too. There are many businesses in large cities that you won’t find anywhere else. Smaller towns and villages will never get the same kind of options that city slickers do. This also means it's a brilliant place to find new customers, grow your business as a whole and launch products. There’s nothing that can’t be done in large cities. That old adage of only large businesses being able to succeed in such a competitive environment isn’t worth the time it takes to say such nonsense. Entrepreneurs, online businesses and startups are thriving in capital cities around the world. One of the reasons is because they know how to target fellow city residents. For your business to succeed, you must also learn how to target people who live and work in the same city as you do.


Perfect marketing space
Every city has incredible public transport. No, not in the sense that it always runs on time but the networks themselves. Whether it's tunnels for the metro, bus stops, tram lines or even eco-bicycles, you have the perfect marketing space available. In the London tube network, there are long tunnels that have posters of upcoming movies, theater shows and music concerts. They are also used for business marketing. Literally, millions of people will walk through those tunnels in just a couple weeks, therefore getting some prime real estate in the form of via public transport networks is essential for business growth. Some tourists might also respond but your target audience is fellow citygoers.

Not too wide
Online marketing has a tendency to leak out over the edges. It is the internet after all and anyone from anywhere can access popular websites where you ad might be displayed. However, you don’t want to cast the net too wide and miss the majority of the city residents. Using and implementing Google Ads automation scripts, will allow you to cut certain locations out. Therefore any of your keyword SEO marketing, such as blogs and product descriptions don’t have to be directed to those outside of the city. It focuses all efforts onto a local area, meaning your local SEO has to be fantastic. It's also a good idea to use specific keywords that would only be relevant and relatable to the city, such as cultural events.


Good old fashioned
Yes flyers, pamphlets and brochures do still have a tremendous say in the marketing world. Again, millions of people walk the streets of large cities. Create an effective flyer about your business and print of many hundreds of copies. Either hand them out to people on the street or get them distributed by companies that offer such services. You can also work with businesses to have them stick them to their shop windows etc.

The large city is a wonderful place to start a business. Just like a startup in a town, you have to market your business locally first before you move further afield.
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Wednesday, July 10, 2019

12 Ways To Work From Home

Are you dreaming of being able to work from home? Perhaps the daily commute is getting you down or your travel and lunch costs are rising monthly. Perhaps your circumstances have changed an you would like to be at home with your family, caring for relatives or looking after your pets. So many people are seeking work from home opportunities now, it is about being flexible and getting that all-important work-life balance right. Whatever your situation, we have go you covered today as we share with you 12 ways to work from home.

The number of people working from home each year is rising as more and more people see the benefits. Remote working is so very accessible these days, with apps like Slack, Sling Time Clock, Skype and Whatsapp, along with good old laptops and phones, enabling you to connect globally whilst staying in your own neighborhood or even in your own apartment. Companies are often happy to accommodate flexible working patterns and home working, and there are plenty of opportunities to work wholly from home. It is these that we are going to focus on in our list today for you, so hopefully we have something to inspire everyone here.


Build An Online Business
There are so many options for building an online business, from affiliate work through to an ecommerce site. you might choose to make your own products and then sell them from your own site, or you could register to sell them on some of the bigger well-known sites, such as Etsy.

Alternatively, you might choose to buy products at wholesale prices and sell them on, and if you go for this option, you will need to consider the storage space that you have available. You could choose to run a dropshipping business instead, whereby you needn't handle the products yourself as they are delivered directly to the customer.

Freelance Writing
There are so many possibilities open to you if you are handy with words. For example, you might be able to write and edit academic textbooks, you could submit articles to magazines and websites or you could work as a copywriter. Copywriting work is wide and varied.

Relevant qualifications can help, but experience and a wide portfolio tend to be more useful in this area.

Dog Walking/Pet Sitting
Indulge your love of animals and set up a dog walking or pet sitting service. You can work hours to suit you and only take on clients that your hours will allow you to. If you are flexible, you can offer a pet sitting service in your client's home.

You will need permits to take care of other people's animals so do ensure that you research this befor embarking on a lifetime of cuddles and fun with canines.

Teaching and Tutoring
If you have teaching experience, you could set up your own tutoring business, or work for an established company. You will often be able to tutor in your own home or you might go out to your students homes to work with them.

If you are a graduate, you can look into teaching English as a foreign language. This is often something that you can do using Skype, so you just need a reliable computer.

Blogging
Blogging is not necessarily an easy route into earning at home, as so many people seem to have jumped onto this one. However, as long as you are aware of that, then do give this one a go as it can be profitable.

It costs very little to set this business up, but it will require a significant investment of time from you. You need to create quality content regularly and work hard to build up your readership and social media followings. Consistency is key and interacting with other bloggers and readers is essential.

You can earn from blogging in a variety of ways, such as carrying advertisements, working with brands and PRs to promote products, experiences and services, placing content, affiliate marketing, and launching your own products, ecourses or ebooks.


Proofreading
If you have an eye for detail and a brilliant grasp of grammar and spelling, then this could be the one for you.

You can take of proofreading work in the comfort of your own home and you will probably get to read a real mixed bag of books, articles and texts. you can work in a freelance capacity, though you will require some level of experience in order to attract clients. You could also work with an agency or employer to ensure a more regular workload.

Ironing and Laundry
If you are one of those people that actually quite enjoys ironing, then there is definitely an opportunity fo ryou here. So many people hate this chore, or they simply do not have the time to get it all done for their household. You can go into their homes to complete this, though most people collect it, do it in their own home, and then return it all.

Virtual Assistant
Businesses are crying out for professional, well-organised help, and with so many businesses now run online, virtual assistants are becoming increasingly popular. You could be working on any manner of tasks and it could change every day. You might have several clients, and this is the real appeal for those companies hirings VAs as they need not keep them on their full time payroll, but utilise them when they need to..

Social Media Manager
Many brands now choose to employ a social media manager to run all of their social media platforms for them. You would need to create content, boost engagement, represent the brand favorable and respond across all active sites. You would be responsible for devising campaigns and monitoring them.

This role can often be office based, but often smaller businesses choose to employ someone to work remotely for them. You would probably have a few clients that you would work for each week in this capacity.

Childminding
If you love children, and perhaps have a background in childcare, then this could be perfect fo ryou. Get in touch with your local authority to find out what regulations you will need to adhere to and arrange relevant inspections.

As people are entrusting you with their children, this is a business that will need to be built up on work of mouth and recommendations, so be patient and enjoy your time with those children.

Audio Typing
You will need to have strong typing skills to make this one worth your while, and if so, this could be perfect for you.

You will usually be transcribing content from court hearings, meetings, minutes and so on and need to ensure that you can do so accurately. You will normally work with a company who supplies you with regular weekly work.

Telesales
You just need a phone line and computer to get going with this one. Many companies outsource their sales departments in this way so they recruit homeowners.

You are likely to be given a list of contacts and you will be required to log into the system to make sales calls to them. These might be cold or warm leads, it entirely depends upon the type of work you are doing and the company you work for. You might be paid an hourly rate, or receive a commission for leads converted.

Would one of these options work well for you? Do let us know how you get on if you decide to give one a go.
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Coola Mineral Body Sunscreen SPF 50 Review

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. I get commission for purchases or clicks made through links in this post.

Not Sponsored: I've been using Aveeno body sunscreen since 2014. I thought it was time to try something different, so I purchased Coola's Mineral Body Sunscreen (Anthropologie, Bloomingdales, Nordstrom, Sephora, SpaceNK). This is a MINERAL SUNSCREEN (chemical active-free sunscreen; great for sensitive skin; provides UVA/UVB protection). You should definitely read-about the differences between chemical (absorbs into the skin) and physical/mineral (sits atop the skin) sunscreen. Coola's Mineral Body Sunscreen has a SPF of 50 (this also comes in a SPF 30 option; the SPF 50 version is water resistant for 80 minutes). It's Fragrance-Free, 70% + Organic, has a Farm to Face formula and offers Plant Protection which incorporates naturally effective and antioxidant-rich nutrients (Buriti Oil, Meadowfoam Seed Oil, Raspberry Seed Oil and Prickly Pear Extract) to help fight free radicals and nourish and support the skin barrier. Whew! That's a lot! Although fragrance-free, this sunscreen has a fresh scent. The color of this sunscreen is white. It blends really well into your skin, but if you look closely with your naked eye you will see some whiteness (a slight white cast). But you have to look very very closely. Look at the pictures of my hand below ... before and after application. There is a difference in color. I wanted to point that out. Is this sunscreen Hydrating? Nourishing? Its not. That doesn't bother me, because honestly I don't want it to be when I'm out in the sun. Its not heavy, sticky etc either. Is this sunscreen Effective? Yes. It provides effective protection against the sun. No sunburn here (not while I tested it). Coola states this can be used on your body and your face. You can, but honestly I prefer and highly suggest their Sun Silk Drops for face that I reviewed yesterday. This is just a SOLID SUNSCREEN that works. I'm switching to it because my sensitive skin prefers mineral sunscreens over physical ones. Coola also offers a Mineral Sunscreen in a spray, so I'm interested in trying it as well. Plus its offered in a Tropical Coconut Scent :) Overall this sunscreen is effective!

Sweet-Bittersweet-NotSweet
supersweet(run & buy it) sweet(really good,buy it) bittersweet(ok, issues)not sweet(not good,don't buy this stuff) 
  Coola Mineral Body Sunscreen SPF 50 is Sweet

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