Category: Late-bloomer

Claiming My Skin with THE SKIN TYPE SOLUTION by Leslie Baumann

I don’t know how many different products I have encountered, purchased, used, hated and loved then hated after a couple of months; trying to get beautiful and clear skin. I have tried over the counter creams and lotions to high-end scrubs and infomercial washes but nothing seemed to work and if it did work not for very long. Don’t even get me started on what the dermatologist prescribed me; I didn’t know my skin to look that color and burn so much. I have even tried changing my diet all for the sake of my skin but that just led to frustrations of a different sort.

So I will admit I became lazy about my skin; sleeping with make-up on, not sticking to my cleansing routine morning and night and even added caffeine back to my diet and as expected I BROKE OUT! Worse than ever before, I can’t even begin to explain what was going on with my skin. Not only where there pimples dotted across my face but they were red and angry. I just had to tell myself one day, I said, “Sabrina, you getting to old for this shit.” excuse my french but “Really skin? You going to have me looking like that?”

That is when I came across The Skin Type Solution by Leslie Baumann M.D.. Now when I say “came across” I mean that in the loosest of terms, it was more like I saw it on my sister’s bookshelf and stole it but you get what I mean. (Thanks Shelly!)

skinsolution

In her book, Dr. Baumann takes you through the process of learning first; the type of skin you have by answering a series of questions you will be able to define your skin type; Dry/Oily, Sensitive/Resistant, Non-Pigmented/Pigmented and Wrinkled/Tight. My skin type happens to be an OSNT combination, just in case you were curious. Once you have defined your skin type, you move on to your particular skin type’s chapter and learn more about what are the best ingredients, practices and products in regards to YOUR skin. Dr. Baumann makes product suggestions for you includes items at different price points for different budgets. Which is awesome since not every person can throw down $300 a month on skin care and would rather have the acne (I don’t blame you because what is the point of having pretty skin and can only afford to sit in your house!).

It has been about a month since I have been using the products suggested in her books and can I just say I am finally starting to love my skin. Although, I will tell you sometimes I am skin not as good as I should be about taking off my make-up and using all the products when I’m supposed (Hey, I’m trying!) to but there is definite improvement and well worth a try!

But don’t believe me, take a look at the book yourself and start reclaiming your beautiful and clear skin!

What are your tips/reads for great skin care? Leave a comment and let’s help each other out!

Until next time!
Sabrina

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I’m Not Your Doormat; 3 Places to Start Speaking Your Mind

Tired of feeling used by family and friends?
Are being disrespected and/or treated like your invisible at work or school?
Has your social life ruined your credit, health, and/or confidence?

If you have answered yes to any of the questions above then it may be time for you get up off the floor and stop being a weak-willed doormat (yeah, I said it!) and start figuring out who you are and what you stand for. Although, this may be easier said than done, keeping quiet because your afraid of people’s reactions hasn’t worked this far so you may as well try something new.

3 Places Where Speaking Your Mind is a MUST:

1. At Home: Wither you are living with room mates, a significant other, by yourself or living with family members; the place you are currently calling home is supposed to be the one place where you can be comfortable being yourself. So, that might mean that it is finally time to have that chat with the one who is leaving dirty socks on every flat surface about the lovely invention of a hamper, maybe you need to show them the wad of hair that you recently released from the shower drain or maybe you have that friend that “only wanted to crash for a few days” but 3 months later has made your living room into an adult fort filled with mysterious scents and creatures of the deep. Has your wholly organic spreads just become the condiment of choice for someone else’s midnight snack? What ever it may be it is time to SPEAK UP and let them know that what they are doing just isn’t really working for you. Life outside your house is stressful enough so why bring that into your house?

“Your not trying to come up, in MY House, with all that”

2. At Work: Finding a job is hard enough in this economy and so when you finally and one it is understandable that you don’t want to “rock the boat” and potentially end up back on the unemployment line but sitting quietly and allowing others to lay claim to your hard work and your ideas isn’t the way to go about it either. When at work go by the old saying “It isn’t what you say but how you say it” there is nothing wrong with having a differing point of view or correcting someone’s oversight but it does require a healthy dose of TACT. So like mothers all over the world have told us about honey flies and vinegar. Tone down the acidic bite and sweeten up your approach in the work place.

“I’m not a Bitch, I just know my own mind”

3. In Your Relationships: Relationships are hard, no matter if it is a sibling, a friend or a significant other, and oftentimes just a quagmire of sticky and often times explosive situations. A way to diffuse these situations is to address them as they arise instead of waiting until your ready to bite someone’s head off because they left the cap off the toothpaste or left the gas tank only a quarter full. Not only is it unfair to them but it is also hard on you. Healthy relationships are built on sharing and understanding each other and telling them about the things that really work your nerves or hurt you is a part of that and again why the added stress in your life? Especially in the relationships that we choose the rule of them is “If you don’t tell them, they won’t know.” So maybe they need to lay off the weight jokes or be less judgmental about your preferences or choices. If they are doing something that hurts you. YOU need to say something about, otherwise the behavior will only continue and who could blame them? People are not mind readers so say something.

“Be BOLD about your shit!”

That being said if you have told them , more than once, that you find a certain behavior of theirs a little hard to swallow and they still continue it may be time to reevaluate if that particular relationship is really necessary in your life. If not, keep it moving, life is too long and too short to be stuck with people who continually make you miserable. Especially early on in romantic relationships, be bold about your shit! If they can’t hang, then it is always best to know early on before someone resorts to a “Waiting to Exhale” moment!

Now that is one woman who could have released some of her pent-up anger!

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A Frump Girl’s Confessional

In starting this blog, I had intended to take the issues that I have been dealing with head on in the hopes that my experiences would help others like myself who may lost their way or were too afraid to try.

And while I have had no issue doling out advice when it comes to; employment (or the lack there of), body positivity and the issues facing Millennials. There is one very real issue to me that I have managed to avoid this far:

I. Am. A. Frump. Girl.

Not that there is anything wrong with enjoying the freedom of elastic waist bands and sports bras nor is it a problem that one’s entire wardrobe consists of sweat pants and T-shirts from when they were a larger size! (It allows for more layering, HELLO!) But to be completely honest, I have not been completely comfortable about it for a while. I even refused to take pictures or go out with friends. At first I thought that after losing some weight I would suddenly be this beautiful/fashionable butterfly and all the boys would want to come to the yard! It didn’t happen that way, sure men noticed my slimmer figure as I walked down the street but and a few even asked for my number and tried to get into my pants! (oh hell no! I’m a lady!) After all of my hard work trying slimming down I still found myself piling on the layers, pulling my hood up and fading into the background of NYC streets.

And it nothing to do with the size on the back of my jeans (when I wore them) but it was a seed that had been planted in my brain sometime ago that if I wasn’t classically beautiful then I was disgusting to look at and so I hid. I am was hiding myself; from the judgmental (maybe just in my mind) eyes of the people on the street, from my friends, from my family and even myself.

Now, I have decided that enough is enough, it is time for me to be Unashamed. Unafraid and Unapologetic about who I am and what I have to say about my personal style and fashion and live up to everything that I say here on this blog! So screw you haters, Sabrina is here!

Which leads to what I hope will be a new series within this blog, following this post of my personal style from A Frump Girl’s Confessional, where I will be digging deep into the back of my closet as well as into my wallet to share my fashion story with you all! Anticipate it! I’m sure it will prove to be very interesting…….. I hope.

Check out my Polyvore page to see what I’m currently drooling over!

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How to Look and Feel Confident in Clothes?

Here is another question I found on my new favorite site XoJane, this one from a young woman trying to figure out the basics of dressing to impress when your body type may be less than impressive:

I need help managing my image. Externally, I mean. Internally, I’m happy with how I “look,” so to speak, but externally, I feel like a total slob. It might sound a little arrogant, but I’d like if my appearance, fashion-wise, could be as cool as I think I am…
The problem is, I’m totally clueless about dressing myself. I know what looks good on other people, however when it comes to my own clothes, I always find myself unsatisfied. My body shape is kind of odd in that I’m a bit taller than average, slim, and very top heavy. I don’t feel comfortable in tops that show off my cleavage, nor in bottoms that reveal too much of my long legs. I also dislike baggy clothes, or clothes that cover up too much. No matter what I’m wearing, either I feel like I’m being unprofessional and revealing too much of my body or unfeminine because I’m completely covered up in something unflattering.
The clothes I’m most comfortable in are skinny jeans and men’s white undershirts: in that sort of outfit, my legs get accentuated a little, and the curves on my chest are neither completely invisible nor directly in anyone’s face. But I know I can’t wear those clothes out, and to be honest, I’m a little embarrassed of them. I want to look like a put-together, confident woman. My clothes don’t do me justice, and it’s completely my own fault.
I don’t really like accessories, make-up, or cute hairstyles. I’ve always been pretty tomboyish, in the sense that I don’t like to spend too much time getting ready; I’m definitely a throw-it-on-and-go kind of girl. I like dresses and skirts, but I feel like they show too much of my body, so I can’t really wear them. I also like to feel like I can run if I need to (what if there’s a spontaneous butterfly that needs chasing?), so skirts that are too long or too tight are no good for me.
To me, my body is a very private thing. I love showing myself off to my partner, but I don’t want the world staring at me and seeing too much. At the same time, I want to look the best that I can, and I know that at this point I just don’t. How can I dress myself better? Please give me some advice.

My Answer:

Despite you saying at first that you are “happy with the way you look” it doesn’t really come across as such in the rest of your statement, there is just a whole lot of negativity going on in there that I think you may want to re-evaluate. We all know that we are our own worst critic don’t be too hard at your reflection in the mirror.

Now remember that there are parts of everyone’s body that might not be “ideal” I mean come on not even the Human Barbie naturally has the perfect body and not everyone has the means or conviction to go under the knife. So how do people do it? How do they manage to put themselves together day after day as they go out to face the world? Fashion, which doesn’t mean that you need to stalk the runway or buy pricey duds but it does mean learning about what works for you and your body.

You say that you are top heavy with long slim legs, next you go out shopping try on the popular Peplum tops to pair with your favorite skinny jeans and a cute heels or flats. It is an easy grab-and-go addition to your wardrobe and what it also does is create balance and a feminine shape for your body.

Peplum Top from French Connection
Peplum Top from French Connection

Another item that you might want to explore is the A-Line midi skirt. It too with give you a fuller bottom half as well as give you some modesty while still being comfortable and easy to wear matched with a Graphic tee and a pair high-top All Stars or light loafers with a leather jacket.

Image c/o collegefashion.net- Outfit Inspired by Rachel
Image c/o collegefashion.net- Outfit Inspired by Rachel

The point is you can’t be afraid of trying new things. Each time you go shopping make it a point to try something that you wouldn’t normally go for. I mean what is the worst that can happen? You put it on and you don’t like it? Fine take it off and try something else, no biggie! Also if your shopping with a friend bring someone who is supportive of you, will give you an honest opinion and whose style you admire. So leave your man at home and work it out!

Your style should always say something about you, and why should it say anything but “I am fabulous, confident and I make this look easy!”

Don’t forget to check out xoJane for more questions like this and other fun and informative articles!

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Is Body Positivity Even Possible?

So in my search for inspiration for posts for The Un-Life, I ran across xoJane’s advice column, where they allow the readers to answer/advise, and thought that I would weigh in on the discussion.

The Question:
I’m 18 and three weeks ago I got a breast reduction. I was overjoyed going from a 32H to a 32D (or thereabouts), but after the initial shock of a lighter load and a higher rack wore off, I become increasingly disillusioned with my body. I was never an exceptionally chubby kid, but for whatever reason I was teased for my weight starting in preschool. This, coupled with a family who decidedly never complimented my appearance (I think they did it out of love. You know a pretty-is-not-everything kind of thing? They’ve always praised my intellect, creativity, etc) left me feeling unmentionably ugly and fat. I experimented with eating disorders in middle school, and eventually worked my way out of it, but was still left with the feeling that I was horribly unattractive. I’m only 5’3″ and weigh 135 pounds–which I realize is not overweight at all, but I carry most of my fat in my stomach, leaving me with a pooch that my mom sometimes says makes me look pregnant. In the beginning, it was only stomach I hated but as I’ve gotten older its spread to my pasty skin, my round baby face and lack of cheekbones, my smile in pictures, the blackheads on my nose, even my toes. I tried to buy new clothes post-reduction but they seemed to highlight every one of these features. The majority of my friends seem have grown into beautiful, womanly, confident, semi-adults. I on the other hand feel flabby with the insecurities of a preteen. I am wondering if body positivity is even possible or if I should stop deluding myself that I will ever be pretty (or moreover, feel pretty) and try to focus on other, more important parts of myself? When I asked my mom for advice she just told me to go on a diet and workout more.

My Answer:

The first thing to realize is that Body Positivity, is a journey, FOR EVERYONE! Not only for those who are on the heavier side but also for those “semi-adult” looking friends who you are comparing yourself to, and that is where you should start; by NOT comparing yourself! The human body is a varied and wonderful thing and should be honored as such!

I found myself in a similar place after losing a significant amount of weight and instead of enjoying the new body that I was in I was standing in front of the mirror pinching, poking and criticizing the areas that I felt just weren’t “good enough”. Which led me to burying the body I had worked so hard to achieve under layers of clothes and doing the best that I could to go unnoticed by others.

But what is good enough? The women on the cover of magazines? Hell, they don’t even look like that! With the amount of articles online about #photoshopfails in popular ads I think it is about time we stop fixating on those images for standards for own bodies. Be your own standard of beauty. You are uniquely and beautifully you!

Alright enough of my preaching. Here is what I suggest, start small: everyday find something that you Do like about your self. Maybe it is the color of your eyes or the shape of your mouth if so, slap a fierce lipstick on it! Start building confidence from there. Be kind to yourself, you don’t have to love everything but you have to start liking something!

Look for Inspiration! Use the internet as a tool to build yourself up start reading body positivity blogs (or start your own!) that detail loving the body your in and being unafraid to disregard societies rules for what can/can’t wear or should/shouldn’t look like! I feel talking to others as well as surrounding yourself with positive people who understand (sympathetic/empathetic) where you are coming from will definitely help also wither that is a professional or a friend. It doesn’t hurt, I promise!

If you still feel like you would like to make some changes with your start incorporating healthy habits into your daily routine; eat healthy, drinking more water and moderate exercise will not only having your looking “better” but feeling better as well.

All in all, you are not hopeless, Body Positivty is very real and obtainable but the road to getting there all starts with you!

To see the original post, the comments readers left in response, and other questions like this visit XOJane

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When Weight Stops Being the Issue

In today’s media there are countless images upholding the ideals of beauty. But for most of us around the world, those ideals portrayed in mass media do not reflect what we see around us nor what is in the mirror. But media has some options for us to “fix” what is “wrong” with us too; from quick-fix pills to fad diets and beyond. We have been led to believe that if only we comply with the ideals of beauty we too can be happy and successful.

You too! Can go from this:

To this:

WHAT A LOAD OF BULL!
The truth is, that only way your weight contributes to your happiness and success in life is if YOU let it! And you can take that to the bank.

And this is a lesson I had to learn myself, the hard way. At my heaviest and most “miserable”, I would find myself thinking, “that if only I was skinny then I would have a boyfriend or more friends, I would be beautiful, people would just like me etc.” and so one day I decided, that I was going to seriously commit to losing the weight and I did it! But I will tell you, after shedding almost 1/3 of my weight (about 70 lbs) no boyfriend magically appeared nor did any new friends. I was still the shy, awkward girl who preferred reading and Korean dramas to meeting people, that I was before I lost the weight. Same person just in a smaller package.

So that got me thinking, What if the Weight wasn’t the Issue? and what a scary thought that was because for so long my weight had been the great “enemy” standing in the way, to me frolicking in the sun with all my bffs. What the hell? does that mean there is something actually wrong with me? GASP

That isn’t what I had signed up for! I was just supposed to loose the weight and then be happy! Where did this self-examination step come from! Nuh-uh!

But all kidding aside, this is not to say that I regret losing the weight because by doing so I have gained so much from losing; I am more comfortable in my skin, my confidence grows everyday to try new things and see new places. I have had the chance to start learning more about myself; how people perceive me, how I perceive myself, and how want to be viewed by myself and by others.

The main take-away from all this is; if you want to lose the weight, that’s great! I applaud you!

But realize this:
1. You are beautiful/handsome, as you are!
2. You are not only worthy but DESERVING of love and all the things your heart desires, not matter what size jeans you are wearing!
3. There are no limits to where life can take you, as long as your get out of your own way!
4. It is not your duty to take on other people’s crap, misguided notions and/or prejudices BUT you can take on the duty of proving them all wrong!

When Weight Stops Being the Issue then we can start to figure out what really matters and start making ourselves the change we wish to see in the world around us.

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