I don’t think living in the land of the midnight sun is supposed to equal land of the midnight (or 1am, 2am, or 3am…) bedtime, but hey, it happens to the best of us. Too little sleep, along with a collection of other under eye enemies such as allergies, too much rubbing, or plain ole genetics, can bring on dark circles reminiscent of a Walking Dead character. Not exactly the look you were going for? Me neither. Luckily, there are some pretty simple tricks you can use to bring you back to the land of the living.
Remember in the last blog (because you’ve obviously already read it, right?) we talked about cucumbers being a magical fruit (yes, they’re a fruit, not a vegetable and if you don’t believe me Google would be happy to prove me right 😉 )? TV isn’t lying to you! People really do put cucumber slices on their eyes to help with puffiness and darkness. Cut yourself some slices, chill them in the fridge for about 1/2 an hour, then close your eyes on plop them on there. Relax for 10 minutes and rinse your eye area with water!
If you’re eyes seem to be worse when you wake up in the morning, consider sleeping with an extra pillow, on your back, so fluid doesn’t have an opportunity to pool overnight. Something else to consider, in case your issues are allergy related, is making sure your pillow and pillow case are always fresh and clean aka free of dust mites and allergens that could be attacking you in your sleep without you even realizing it!
From what I can gather from the kids these days, tea seems to have taken on a new definition, to mean gossip? People keep talking about spilling the tea…I’m feeling very out of the loop. So disregard that; I’m talking about literal bags of tea that you would stick in a cup of hot water or something fancier, I’m sure, if you were with the Queen. The caffeine in the tea is your friend! Soak a couple tea bags in warm water for a few minutes to get the juices flowing, so to speak, then toss them in the fridge for a few to chill them out. Once they’ve cooled off, stick one on each eye for 5 minutes or so and viola!
Essential Oils (IF YOU DON’T HAVE LASH EXTENSIONS!)
At the risk of sounding like a ridiculous character out of a JP Sears video, essential oils are amazing for SO MANY THINGS!! Maybe I’ll do another post on that later..but for the time being I’ll stick to some relevant to the issue at hand: lavender, chamomile, geranium, rose, rosemary, and fennel. Mix a drop of your fave with a little coconut oil and gently rub under eyes. I’m counting my lucky stars that I have lash extensions and can’t use this tip because I hate the smell of every single one of those! Flowers. Eww.
You guys there are a ton more things that you can do – both natural and with targeted skin care products. If you get through this list and I’ve failed you miserably, there are more options out there! Hopefully though, that will not be the case and you’ll be looking bright eyed and bushy tailed in no time!
Long holiday weekend have you feeling like you look like this ^ but you’re not pregnant? Sometimes there’s a price to pay for all that delicious food. And maybe just a beer or two 😉
Here are a few foods (more food?? yes, more food) to help prevent bloating in the future:
There’s a reason fancy schmancy people stick cucumber slices on their eyes! They are great at reducing puffiness – internally or externally apparently! Cucumbers contain an anti-oxidant that reduces swelling and they can stop pro-inflamitory enzymes from taking over your belly.
Potassium is the key here! It regulates sodium levels so it can prevent water retention. Other potassium-rich foods include oranges, kiwis, pistachios, and avocados.
Papain, the rockstar enzyme of papaya, helps with digestion, particularly the breakdown of proteins. Easier digestion, less bloating.
Go mix yourself up a fruit salad! A perfectly delightful summer treat 🙂
While you’re at it, try to avoid these bloat-inducing foods: dairy, apples, salty food, cabbage, kale, legumes and broccoli.
Me: Hey you! Yes you! Do you have lash extensions??
I’m imagining you saying “Oh why yes Erin, I do! And I absolutely love them because Kelsie and Chelsea are glorious demigods sent down from the lash heavens!”
Me: Do you wash them regularly with an oil free, lash safe cleanser?
You: “Uh yeah…I know she told me to do that. I definitely do. All the time.”
Me: If you’re lying to me you better knock it off right now! You must wash your lashes!! I can 100% GUARANTEE that your lash artist has instructed you to do so, and it’s just that – an instruction, not a suggestion!
Where do eyelashes come from? – Hair follicles.
Where are those hair follicles? – Eyelids.
What are eyelids made of? – Skin.
What does skin do naturally? – Shed.
How does the shed skin get cleaned up? – By washing it away.
It’s really that simple! If you didn’t have lash extensions, would you never wash your eyes? No! That sounds silly doesn’t it! If your hairdresser spends 2 hours on your hair are you going to not wash it until the next time you see them?? No! Way silly! You have to eliminate the dead skin from your lash line just as you have to do it on your head and your entire body!
Hair follicles can get clogged, which will affect your natural lash growth. Less happy natural lashes = less to attach fluffy extensions to.
YOU MUST WASH YOUR LASHES!!!
Get it yet? Ok good.
We have a lash specific cleanser available here, Minkys Lashampoo Foam Cleanser. This is what the girls use to clean your lashes when you come in for a fill. All the ingredients are safe for your extensions. If you’re using another product, just make sure you’ve checked with your artist to make sure the ingredients won’t affect the glue and you’ll be good to go!
What are you doing on a daily basis to create happiness in your life? Yes, I said create it. Your thoughts and actions can have such an incredible impact on your outlook on life.
Does life throw some nasty curve balls from time to time? Absolutely. Do you have to react dramatically and let it “ruin everything”? Definitely not.
A couple of my favorite quotes:
“If you can’t change the circumstances, change your perspective.” – unknown
“If you don’t like something, change it. If you can’t change it, change your attitude. Don’t complain.” – Maya Angelou
You might say I’m a “dramatic” person, but I try to keep my diva-ness contained to ridiculous little things, such as dramatically declaring I’m going to starve to death if I find out my husband ate my leftovers. (But seriously, don’t touch my food)
In a serious situation, however, I am able to keep a level head and calmly assess what’s happening. Will freaking out solve the problem? Will throwing a boo-hoo pity party make anything better? I understand that there are devastating things that can absolutely knock the wind out of a person, but you get to decide how long it is going to bring you down.
Putting some of these tips into practice can really affect your happiness and how quickly you are able to rebound from disheartening situations.
Start with the basics:
You’d be amazed at how much a regular food, water, sleep, exercise schedule will help.
Hanger is a real thing…it can be so hard to eat a balanced diet with a busy lifestyle, but it’s possible, and it can do wonders.
Sleep..can be elusive for many, busy life, too much work, crying baby…some of those things are within your control to change – put down the laptop, read that blog I wrote about sleep-aiding foods, and get some rest! If you’ve got a child that’s affecting your sleep schedule, well…I’m sorry about that 😛 but it won’t last forever!
Move it! If you think “I don’t like to exercise, it’s hard and boring” you are sadly mistaken. There’s no one size fits all definition of a good workout. There are so many summer activities that can get your heart pumping, take advantage of them! If that baby of yours isn’t letting you sleep you may as well do some lunges or squats while you’re holding him/her! Endorphins are a magical thing. As Elle Woods would say “Exercise gives you endorphins. Endorphins make you happy! Happy people just don’t shoot their husbands.” Something we should all strive for 😛
No matter what is going on in your life, no matter how many of those nasty curveballs have been sent your way lately, there is always something to be thankful for. Reminding yourself of the things you can be grateful for can definitely have a positive effect on your mood. Spend a couple minutes each day and just make a list in your head of the things, people, places you have to be thankful for. I try to think of a few things first thing in the morning, but other than that I just catch myself thinking of things throughout the day.
Have a hobby:
Everyone has a talent. It may currently be hidden! But I’m sure it’s there somewhere. It doesn’t have to be anything magnificent – we’re not all going to paint a masterpiece or record the next hit single and that’s ok. I am an excellent reader. I enjoy it, it’s fun for me, and a good use of my time. I’d say that’s my main hobby – nothing fancy, just something to keep me occupied. Instead of sitting in front of the TV for hours on end, figure out something you can do that you would enjoy for even just 1/2 an hour a day!
Positive breeds positive. If you take some time to say something kind or do something helpful for another person, you are going to benefit! It just makes you feel good to be helpful to others. Write your coworker a note thanking them for their help with a problem you had. Ask the little old lady down the street if you can water her flowers for her. Tell the stranger in the grocery store that you love their outfit. All of these are small things that will take you hardly any time, but will leave both you and the recipient feeling happier.
Have a conversation:
It’s important to take time to connect with others. Yes, many of us talk to people all day long, but there’s a difference between a 30 second customer service conversation and a 10 minute one with a friend. You’re not an island. It’s good to have people to go to with the happy, the sad, and the infuriating (because being a happy person doesn’t mean there aren’t going to be things that make you crazy from time to time).
That’s it. Do it sometimes for no good reason and trick yourself into thinking you have something to smile about. Because whether you think so or not, you do (see the “Be Thankful” paragraph!)
What do you do in your day to day life that makes you happy?
Please tell me someone gets my movie reference…
Moving on. Massage therapy is not all about rainbows and butterflies, no siree! You might be amazed to find out what it could do for pain. Millions (probably billions honestly) of people are living with chronic pain. This isn’t “Oooh I stubbed my toe and now it’s really hurty!” kind of pain, it’s “I swam into the side of a swimming pool hard enough to give me whiplash 7 years ago and I’ve hurt every day since then.” kind of pain. Not that I would know anything about that…what kind of idiot swims into the side of a swimming pool?? Must’ve been a real amateur… 😛
Chronic pain doesn’t necessarily come from accidents or injuries! Arthritis, fibromyalgia, pregnancy, carpel tunnel, cancer…any number of conditions can leave you feeling like you’re tied up like an achy, pretzely knot. Tension headaches – killer. Massage can help with them too! There is research upon research that has dug into the effects of massage therapy on everything I’ve mentioned plus more. You’d be hard pressed to find a pain causing ailment that massage can’t help.
Sure, there are prescription medications up the wazoo that very well may be medically necessary, or at least helpful, but isn’t it also nice to know that you have an option where perhaps the most concerning side-effects are obnoxiously snoring in the middle or feeling like a pool of melted butter at the end?
We are fortunate to have a massage therapist, Jennifer, who recognizes that massage is not a one-size fits all service. She will happily tailor your massage to your needs and comfort level. Also, the benefits of massage are cumulative – a healing miracle may not happen on your first appointment, but with continued therapy, you are likely to feel an incredible decrease in your daily discomfort. It’s at least worth a shot, isn’t it??