LIBBY LIVING COLORFULLY

Better Blonder with The Shop Salon

BeautyLibby RasmussenComment

“Where do you get your balayage done?” While this question was completely harmless and with good intent, I was horrified to hear that my roots where so dark that someone actually thought I had paid to have my hair look that way.  For those who don’t know, this is a balayage – a technique for highlighting the hair in which the dye is painted on in such a way as to create a graduated, natural-looking effect. Beautiful for some, but certainly not the look I was going for.

I knew I needed to get my hair highlighted immediately.  When looking for a salon in the DC area, I’m always a bit hesitant for two reasons. One, it literally costs an arm and a leg to get your hair highlighted in the district.  Two, my best friend’s Mom has been one of the few people to color my hair ever, and since the 6th grade at that.  Any blonde who gets highlights knows that there is a lot of trust involved when someone colors your hair and that it can go TERRRRRRIBLY wrong. 

When I connected with AC at The Shop Salon in Bethesda, my fears were immediately put to rest.  We had a great consultation over the phone, discussing my hair texture and thickness and what color I was going for.  We decided that Bruna, one of the amazing stylists at the salon would be the best match for me. Just a short walk from the Bethesda metro station, the salon is conveniently located downtown. It’s bright, with amazing natural sunlight and the walls lined with some of my favorites from Bumble and Bumble.

Bruna and I chatted about what color and the thickness of the highlights we thought would be best and off we were! She used so many new products I had yet to try but now love - particularly this Kevin Murphy UN.TANGLED leave-in conditioner, which smells amazing.  I also love love love Redken’s Anti-Snap for a leave-in treatment – I’ve been using it since the 4th grade. 

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After a few short hours, I was blow-dried and curled to the nines.  My hair has honestly never looked better.  I loved the soft, beachy curls the team showed me how to replicate with my new favorite line from Bumble and Bumble, called Surf. This line is a saltwater-based styling spray that adds texture and volume that gives my hair a fresh-off-the-beach look.  The Surf line even has seaweed and kelp extracts for enhanced moisture.  The foaming mousse also has a beach protective blend with coconut water that protects hair from the drying and damaging effects of the sun’s UVA and UVB ray. See, even your hair needs sun protection. #wearsunscreen #seriouslyladies

Anywho, the whole team at The Shop Salon was incredible and super attentive, which I truly appreciate.  I give my highest recommendation for blondes or really, anyone in the DC area to visit The Shop Salon.  I can’t wait to go back! Gone are the days I’ll go that long without highlighting my hair.  Buh-bye balayage.  

Make sure to check out The Shop Salon and tell them that Libby sent you! A special thank you to AC and my new friends at The Shop Salon and Bumble and Bumble for partnering with me. As always, all of my opinions are 100% my own.

Cinco de Weekend

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Is there really anything better than limes, salt, tacos, margs, birght colored earrings, and tassel off the shoulder tops? It's almost if someone took all of my favorite things and put them into one day. 

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What to Wear

What to Make: Hosting a little backyard fiesta? Here's an idea to spice up some of your appetizers.  Remember when I made these darling little DIY Decorative Party toothpicks for my mini chicken and waffles?  They are so easy to make and perfect for the weekend celebrations!  
Another crowd-pleaser, my jalapeño poppers recipe! More importantly, this tie-dye piñata cake: I made.

Where to Eat: If you're in the DC area, Mission Dupont will be hosting the largest party in D.C. on May 5 for Cinco de Mayo. The party starts at 11am with a special lunch menu offered featuring a mix of Mexican brunch and lunch items. I HIGHLY recommend the spicy pineapple margs. And if you're playing hooky from work, (which you should) Mission's legendary bottomless brunch option is also available- two hours of bottomless margaritas, mimosas, beer, bloodies, guacamole, salsa (+ a shot of tequila!) Guys, there will even be mariachi band.  What more fun could you need than enjoying this amazing day on the patio?

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And if you're playing hooky from work, (which you should) Mission's legendary bottomless brunch option is also available- two hours of bottomless margaritas, mimosas, beer, bloodies, guacamole, salsa (+ a shot of tequila!) Guys, there will even be mariachi band.  What more fun could you need than enjoying this amazing day on the patio?

Happy Cinco!

Gifts for Her - A Few Ideas for Mother's Day

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Mother's Day is less than 2 weeks away which means you have juuuuust enough time to get the amazing woman in your life something special.  While I'm a big proponent of sending some quality snail-mail, a little somethin' somethin' for, THE AMAZING PERSON who raised you (shout out to my very own, M-O-M) is always a good idea.  And, I made it easy for you by featuring some of my favorite items from Amara, which essentially screams "all the things I want my kid to get me for Mother's Day." You're welcome. 

Let's Talk Lashes - More than Just Mascara (But that too)

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Let's Talk Lashes

I’m pretty over articles that simply tell me which mascaras to buy.  Or in a more recent case, as the Man Repeller discussed, not wearing mascara at all, a la “I (Actually) Woke Up Like This: Bare Eyelashes Are Trending.” Yeah, okay. For many, especially us blondes, this trend isn’t something we’re ready for, or particularly care for.  Ever since I can remember, I’ve loved and embraced a tastefully chunky lash.  Coating my top lashes in layers of thick, black, Lancôme mascara was, and still is a daily ritual I look forward to.  A sign of the “finishing touches” before long day of work, or a girl’s night out, a lash-obsessed gal knows, knows, that there is such a thing as having a Good Lash Day.  And it can make or break your hour of previous grooming antics. 

While make up artist Dick Page has written off thick mascara as one of our “little beauty crutches”, I’m fully willing embrace my mascara “crutch” over rocking a nude lash. The trend  does have me thinking however, what does all that mascara wear and tear do to the longevity of these precious little hairs on our lids? Let’s discuss different methods, products, and then, best practices for keeping your lashes long, and strong – because we all want that, no? Let’s start with the method I tried most recently, lash tinting.


Lash Tinting

I’ve thought about getting my lashes tinting for a few years now.  My lashes aren’t super faint, but they have almost an ombre to them (dark at the root, light at the ends.) I love the idea of not wear so much mascara during the day or at all while swimming.  I started using a semi-permanent lash tint at night sent to me by Rimmel London.  It’s proven to darken bare lashes in two weeks and give the appearance of instantly fuller and longer lashes.  I loved this product for nightly use (before bed), but as my everyday mascara, it didn’t quite do what I wanted.  So then I consulted the professionals at Elle Lash Bar here in Washington, DC and scheduled an appointment.

The lash tinting process was surprisingly quick and easy thanks to Paula at Elle Lash Bar.  We started by removing my mascara and eye makeup.  Paula then put Vasaline on my eyelids and under eyes to prevent the lash dye from staining my skin. She then put thin cotton pads under my eyes and tinted my lashes gently with a small brush and let the dye sit for six or so minutes. After, the dye was removed Paula give me some cooling eyedrops to help with the small burn from the tinting.  

Overall, I highly recommend getting your lashes tinted, especially if they are blonde like mine. My  lashes look so much longer now that they are darker and I love the results. Lash tinting typically costs around $35 - $60 depending on where you live and lasts about 4-6 weeks.
 

 Lash Extensions

Lash extensions fascinate me. Every time I see them on a stranger or a friend, I feel like I want to ask them 100 rapid fire questions. Can I touch them? Do they itch? Are they like, suuuper expensive or just kinda expensive? Can you put mascara on them?  What about showers and washing your face? Are they worth it? Are you forever addicted? So finally, thanks to this post, I asked a friend with lash extensions these exact questions.  Here's what she said:

Tell me about your lashes. I won't ask to touch them but, I will probably stare at them this entire time. 

Friend: "I got my lash extensions a long time ago - about two years to be exact. The process is actually really calming. I go to my lash lady, lay on the bed with chill music playing, close my eyes, and let the beautifying begin."

Can you explain the process? 

Friend: "Each lash gets its own individual lash put over the top. My lash lady dips each individual extension in glue and bonds it to my natural lash. At the end, she goes through and feathers my lashes and checks for spots she missed. I like it because they're custom to me, and I can pick how long or thick I want them depending on my mood."

How long are you laying there for?

Friend: "Typically about an hour and a half give or take. She's pretty fast."

How long do they last?

Friend: 
"It depends on the month. In summer when I'm at the pool or working out more often, I need to get them filled in or redone more often. On average though about 5-6 weeks.  I've learned not to touch or play with them.  The first set I had done didn't last that long because I was constantly touching them. They also itched more. I'm better about that now."

So do they itch a lot? Is that the most annoying part about them?

Friend:
"No, the price is the most annoying part! [laughs] I'd say, it's more mind over matter. But yes, they do itch sometimes."

You mentioned price. We all know they're expensive.  If you don't mind me asking, how much do you pay for yours?

Friend: 
"Oh gosh. Well, my first set was around $300 with tip and my refills are typically around $40-$50 a visit. I know that's a steep price but look, I never buy mascara anymore. When I was, I was paying about $45 a tube and going through 14-16 of those a year, so you do the math. I also stopped coloring my hair when I started getting the lashes. It's all about budgeting your beauty."

Bottom line, will you ever go back to your natural lashes?

Friend: "Not likely, well, I'm not sure.  Right now I see it as a small luxury that I like to do for myself. It makes me feel great and I love the compliments I get from them. And when people ask me if they're extensions, I tell them the truth. But if they just say, "Wow you have great lashes" I thank them and move on." 

Still curious about lash extensions? Check out this article. And I've heard amazing things about the extension services at Elle Lash Bar, here in DC. 

Lash Conditioning

Castor Oil There’s been a lot of hype about castor oil on brows, cuticles, lashes, you name it. But with trend comes skepticism.  "Is Castor oil just the new oil pulling? Where it’s probably bullshit but does it really hurt to try it and see?” Valid.  However, there have been some great testimonials here and here on its benefits.  Castor oil is full of nutrients that can help to nourish the lashes and keep them from breaking. 

Coconut Oil -  Similar to castor oil, many have raved about the benefits of coconut oil for lash conditioning and strengthening. No surprise here, considering coconut oil filled with a wide range of natural fatty acids, like lauric, caprylic, myristic, and capric acid, which are all medium fatty acids and are critical for good cell growth in the body.  

Here's a great eyelash growth serum that we found that combines the two: 

 1 teaspoon castor oil
1 teaspoon emu oil (optional, can use extra castor oil instead)
1/2 teaspoon coconut oil
2 capsules Vitamin E oil (optional)

 

Lash Perming

Lash perming is a great solution for those who spend countless minutes curling their lashes to get that uplifted look.  Why do this? Well, uplifted lashes look longer than straight ones, giving you the large doe-eyed look so many women love.   Eyelash perming curls and lifts your lashes and typically lasts about a month and half.  Of course, the tricky part about lashes is, they fall out. Therefore, as the permed lashes fall out and are replaced by straighter ones, the effect of the perms disappears and requires additional treatments. This could turn into an expensive regimen, but hey, what isn’t?  We’ve also heard rave reviews and have seen amazing before and after before and after photos from clients at Elle Lash Bar.  If you’re looking for something less permanent, we’ve heard rave reviews about this Shu Uemura eyelash curler, which has been around since 1931. 

 

Lash Growth Enhancers

Think of these growth serums and enhancers as eyelash steroids. Not everyone's doing it, but if they are, they probably aren't telling you. Here are a few that I've heard great things about and are using myself. 

Revitalash - Revitalash is sold at Nordstrom and is dermatologist reviewed.  Those who use it say its non-irritating and easy to apply.  Results are typically seen by week 4-6. Revitalash has been called the "training wheels" for anyone who is considering Latisse. 

Amalie Beauty Wink Lash Oil - This Wink lash oil is packed with those great fatty acids that may stimulate lash growth.  In spite of it being an oil, it's light and thin in texture and won't clog up your lids. One user said that she noticed results in just 2 weeks and that her lashes appeared to be darker as well. 

Rapidlash Enhancing Serum - There are a lot of really great reviews of Rapidlash out there, especially on youtube. It needs to be applied just once a day and has been proven to show results in as little as 4 weeks.  

So here's what I'm using....

Rodan + Fields Lash Boost - So you may have remembered my post on starting to use Rodan  + Fields products recently, and yep, I'm still loving it.  Something my skincare godmother, Mary Utsey recommended was Lash Boost for stronger, longer lashes.  I suppose I could file this under the "Lash Conditioning" category as well, but I've seen such great results that it feels more like an enhancement really.  Lash Boost launched in October and I've been using it ever since. Have I noticed a difference? Yes, 100% and others around me have too.  I can't tell you how many times I get asked where I get my lash extensions done and I LOVE being able to say, "Nope, these puppies are mine!"  At $150 a tube, it may seem like a bit of a splurge, but if you're anything like me, and clearly you are if you're reading this post, you want to invest in your lashes and see them grow heathy and strong.  Bonus: Mention Libby Living Colorfully with any Rodan + Fields purchase through Mary and receive $20 off your order! 

Mascara

Primer - Before discussing mascara we need to address the importance of lash primers. Just like painting a room, a primer for your lashes is essential to build up the best shape, length, and thickness before applying your mascara.  The best part - using a primer can actually save you money.  Why? Think about it. You spend around $12 on a primer, use 3-4 coats before your (typically) more expensive mascara.  Rather than loading up on mascara, the primer is used as a less expensive base for the main event. Bonus: A lot of primers have conditioners in them, so it's a lash win/win. Here are a few favorites. Some people even use baby powder applied with a cotton swab before mascara application for a fuller look. THIS is the primer I cannot live without (pictured above!) 

Mascara - Ask most women what cosmetic item they can't leave the house without and most will say mascara. The lash-defining product was first named after Eugene Rimmel, a French cosmetics inventor and was created first in the 1830's.  Here are some other fun facts and tips you might have not known about mascara. 

1. Ever wonder why you instinctively open your mouth when applying mascara? It's because it's actually easier not to blink when your mouth is open. 

2. The FDA reports that the most common makeup related injury is gouging your eye with the mascara wand.  Day ruined. 

3. Mascara on your lashes overnight dries them out and can lead to breakage. Make sure to take it all off before bed to keep those lashes strong! This is easily my favorite oil cleanser and makeup remover

4. Of all the makeup on the market, mascara has the shortest lifespan (about 3-5 months.) 

5. To keep your mascara lasting longer and prevent it from drying out, place a few drops of contact or eye drop solution in the tube every so often to thin out the texture and prevent clumps. 

A very special thanks to Paula at Elle Lash Bar for answering all of my lash questions and for the complimentary lash tinting.  If you're in Washington, DC and are looking for lash extensions, lash perming or tinting, make sure to call the experts at Elle Lash Bar. 

Photos via: Kara Schab of Right Foot Creative 



 

 

 



My Favorite Statement Earrings At The Moment

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Saks Beauty Week Tyson's Galleria

BeautyLibby RasmussenComment

This past year I've made beauty regimens a serious priority of mine. While I'm still guilty of "forgetting" to wash my face after a night out from time to time, I'm working on improving my overall skincare and beauty routine.  For me, this was starting with better quality products. Less drugstore, more department store.  Saks Tyson's Galleria truly has it all so when I found out about their beauty week, I was thrilled.  

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If you follow along on my Instagram stories, you saw that I stopped by Saks last week for the dreamist La Prairie facial.  I also had a chance to check out some of their latest and greatest products for beauty week. 

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You can find so many of my favorites from the store in The Spring Beauty Book.  My overall favs would have to be the Estee Lauder Ultimate Lift Regenerating Youth Creme for Face and Eyes and Hydrating Creme Cleanser. Another goodie was this Bobbi Brown Eye Shadow Palette, which I desperately needed for everyday use.  In addition, thenSaks Beauty Dept includes offerings from Kilian, La Prairie, Chanel, La Mer, Dior, YSL, Clinique, Lancome, Kiehl’s, Trish McEvoy, Laura Mercier, Jo Malone, SKII, Cle De Peau, Sisley, Tom Ford and more.


I also love the beauty ritual guides that Saks is offering for Beauty Week.  We have our eyes set on the Trish McEvoy 'Power of Brows' tutorials on Thursday 2/23. 

Make sure to shop soon. Saks is offering this complimentary tote bag (in stores and online) with any $150 or more purchase. Even better, at $300, you'll get an adorable wristlet to match. Say hello to my new beach bag!  Saks Fifth Avenue in the Tysons Galleria is located at 2051 International Drive, McLean, VA 22102.

7 New Nail Colors for Winter

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1. Vintage on Vine

One of Lauren B Beauty's prettiest nail colors of the season, this true, creamy mauve warms up even the palest skin tones and has a lovely, chameleon-like quality: Depending on the light, the effect wavers between dusky purple and a gorgeous, Instagram-vintage-filter taupe.

2. Rose Quartz

Consider this your new favorite neutral. Rose Quartz polish is at once warm, romantic and charming. Make sure to check out some of the other amazing new Kendra Scott nail lacquers

3. Noot

Noot by Zoya can be best described as a very dark grey cream with strong blue-green undertones. Smoky, smoldering dark grey nails with a twist from the addition of green tones.

4. Slate Grey

This is the grey polish you've been looking high and low for. Thanks again Kendra Scott!  A clean, crisp slate hue with eye-catching shine, this gray nail lacquer is anything but neutral.

5. Departing LAX

For those looking for a little bit of fun, Lauren B Beauty has got you. Glints of silver and lavender illuminate this shimmery gray-brown enamel, lending it the shiny iridescence of a jet-plane. It’s an unexpected neutral that soars.

6. Miley

Eeeeee! This is my favorite polish for fall by far!  I discovered this Zoya color when getting a regular mani at my favorite DC nail salon, Varnish Lane. Miley by Zoya can be best described as a pale, delicate lilac creme with light blue undertones. A lovely botanical shade with high-fashion edge.

7. PCH

This Lauren B Beauty polish will take you places this fall. Imagine a cruise down the Pacific Coast Highway on a cool, clear fall afternoon. That’s the stunning freshness of this opaque cobalt blue. Tinged with purple undertones, it’s festive and on-trend and instantly lifts your mood. 

How perfect are these shelves at Varnish Lane? If you're in DC, you can find Zoya and Lauren B Beauty polishes there! Also, special shout out to Kendra Scott in Bethesda where you can find the latest nail lacquers at the store! 

Which colors and brands do you prefer for winter?
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Redecorating? Here's Where You Should Shop

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One Kings Lane

What could quite possibly be my favorite furniture/lifestyle store, One Kings Lane never lets me down.  There's something for everyone here and many times, the items are one of a kind and get snagged pretty quickly. Whether you're looking for a tufted floral headboard, a Gray Malin print and yes, even a Birkin, OKL has it all. Their shopping features set them apart from the rest. I personally love the Shop By Style option. 

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CB2

What did we do before CB2? That is the real question. Created in 2000, and formed from Crate and Barrel, CB2 specifically caters to the young and the bold.  The company is my go-to when looking for anything and everything brass. And don't get me started on the infinite acrylic options this store offers.  Last Saturday, I spent a good 2 hours wandering the Georgetown store...

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West Elm

West Elm is an affordable classic that I feel really caters well to couples who are looking to combine their decorating styles for their new place.  It has sleek yet comfortable elements with the perfect blend of masculine and feminine elements.  I personally love the lighting at West Elm, particularly, this Mobile Chandelier and this Glass Flushmount

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Serena & Lily 

I have a theory that we all just really need a fully decorated summer home. Anyone else? Serena & Lily's designs keep that damn dream alive with its whimsical hanging Rattan chairs and blue and white decor elements. P.S. did you catch our latest post on Gray Malin's Bedroom Makeover? Well he teamed up with Serena & Lily and it's adorable. 

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Studio McGee

If you haven't heard about Studio McGee yet, you're truly missing out. I've been a big fan of this husband & wife design duo for years and have loved seeing them work their way to the top. Any really, they have worked and it's paid off.  Now they're more than just literally the most sought-after design studio, they have a SHOP

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Watercolor Floral Pillow / Nina Tapered Lamp / Batik Bench / Florence Sketch / Gold Bookends

Lulu & Georgia

As best described on the Lulu & Georgia site, "Lulu & Georgia is for the next generation of trend-seekers. It's for the modern woman: the 9-5er, the housewife, the artist, the executive, and the one who's all four. Glamorous, bohemian chic, vintage eclectic or cutting edge, Lulu & Georgia offers a bit of shine for every personality." I personally love the price points at Lulu & Georgia and the well curated selection of interior decor. It's a must when looking for the latest and greatest designs. 

Where do you like to shop for your decorating needs? 
Let me know! I'm working on a fun master list!

New In The Shop: GENTS

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We now have a SHOP section just for the guys. Great to use as a gift-guide for the men in your life! 
Check it out here or see the latest and greatest below! 

Gray Malin's Banana Leaf Bedroom Makeover

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So it's really no secret here, we're big big big fans of Gray Malin here at Libby Living Colorfully. 
Whether it's lining our bedroom walls with his breathtaking beach photography, watching his adorable and sunshine-y Snapchats, or overall, his personal design aesthetic, we really can't get enough of all things Gray. 


Clearly, his banana leaf print bedroom makes the cut once again. Recently, Gray and his hub underwent a little design update to their bedroom to achieve that "serene coastal cabana vibe." Mission accomplished.  
 

Let's talk more about this banana leaf headboard situation shall we? While Gray's canopy is truly one of a kind, we found this adorable alternative on Etsy for just $350. Yes please.  

Interested in where to find some of these great bedroom pieces? 
Shop the links below using the left and right arrows!

Gray Malin Artwork: Left of Bed: The Swimming Pool /White Frame/ 24” x 36”, Right of Bed: Poipu Beach Vertical /White Frame/ 24” x 36”, Above Large Dresser: The Den/Custom Frame/32” x 48” and Next to Plant: Montauk, Point Beach Vertical /White Frame/36” x 54”

Check out the full post on Gray's blog with more before and after photos! 

I Stopped Using Proactiv and This is Why

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Here's the deal, I started using Proactiv when I was about 14 years old.  Like most teenagers, I had some bumps and blemishes here and there that I wanted to get rid of but overall, nothing too serious.  I swore by this skincare routine well into adulthood, thinking, “if it works, it works.”  While this may be true for some, I found that I was ready to start thinking about my skin in a different way.  What did I want to solve, and what did I want to prevent?  As I’ve mentioned in my 26 Before 26 List, I’ve made it a serious priority of mine to wear sunscreen on a daily basis.  With the exception of getting a little crispy over the 4th of July weekend, I’ve held true to my promise and have made sun protection a daily part of my skincare routine. 

This however, was a step that the Proactiv skincare system was lacking for me.  At 25, I’m thinking less about acne and more about skin protection and rejuvenation.  Don’t get me wrong, I loved using Proactiv, I just needed to switch things up.  Luckily, I didn’t have to stray too far from the brand that I loved and used for so long.  Shortly after making the decision to switch, I was in touch with my friend Mary Utsey, a consultant for Rodan + Fields. Yes, the same dermatologists that developed and created the Proactiv Solution.

I chatted with Mary for a bit on what I was looking for in a skincare line.  I made sure to mention the importance of including a sunscreen in my skincare routine. We also discussed some of my other skin woes; dullness, brown spots, and discoloration.

Mary then suggested the REVERSE regimen to target all of these skin issues.  Essentially, this skincare could help turn back the clock on my younger days of sitting in the sun sans sunscreen, in just 4 easy steps.  Similar to what I did with my Proactiv Solution, using the REVERSE products in the morning and at night, or whenever possible, has helped to brighten my complexion, prevent and repair sun damage, and even restore skin cells for a more youthful look.  Here’s a little more info about each step and what I like about it!

Step 1: Deep Exfoliation – First, I’ll begin by getting my skin wet with lukewarm water.  I’ll take about a dime-size amount onto my entire face and neck and will massage for about 30-60 seconds.  Many times, I think we forget to spend a little extra time in our exfoliation.  Really let the product do the work and keep working it into the skin. Rinse thoroughly pat dry.  I started out using the products every other day per instructions and have worked up to use every morning and night.

Step 2: Intensive Brightening Toner – I think there’s a common misconception that toners aren’t really necessary in a skincare routine.  For me, they’re critical.  Toners help to remove oil and traces of dirt and grime.  Essentially, if you wear sunscreen, or makeup, you should use a toner.  For this brightening toner, I use a gauze pad or cotton ball to apply the toner to my face.

Step 3: Dual Active Brightening Complex – This is quite possibly my favorite step of the process.  The dual process features vitamin C and retinol, to enhance skin brightening while helping to diminish the look of fine lines, along with kojic acid and licorice to improve the appearance of uneven skin tone over time.  After cleansing and toning, I use an equal pea-size amount of each tube next to one another.  Then, I simply blend the two and apply over my entire face until entirely absorbed into my skin.

Step 4: Broad Spectrum SPF 50+ Sunscreen – The final and arguably most important step is the REVERSE set is the sunscreen. Unlike many sunscreens, this product contains Vitamin E and green tea that fight free radicals and prevent future sun damage, while licorice extract and mulberry help to brighten dull skin. 
 

So far I’ve used the REVERSE products for about a month and have already seen fantastic results.  Overall, my skin looks brighter and my skin tone, especially on my forehead and cheeks is far more even than when I started.  Initially, I had a small breakout here and there, but Mary ensured me that it was the change in my skincare routine, and the REVERSE products essentially working up the dirt and oil to the surface of my skin.

I cannot recommend this regimen enough, especially if you are looking for a skincare that targets signs of sun damage and aging, rather than simply acne.  Interested in more? Make sure to check out the other Rodan +Fields skincare lines and talk to my good friend Mary about which one works best for you.  Also, unlike many other skincare treatments I’ve considered in the past, I never once felt pressured to try or purchase something I wasn’t interested in. Added bonus, you can try the products for a full 60 days with the guarantee that they will produce visible results or your money back. I loved this, it really takes away from the pressure of investing in our skin! 

**GIVEAWAY** Anyone who contacts or messages Mary in relation to this blog post will be entered into a drawing to win the latest Rodan + Fields Lash Boost and mini eye cream! 


*The products in this post were provided courtesy of friends at Rodan + Fields. However, I only post and promote products I genuinely use, and more importantly, love. 

Design Crush: Lilly Bunn Interiors

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Crisp, fresh, fun, & playful come to mind when looking at Lilly Bunn's interior design work.  Lilly describes her firm's style as "Interiors that are high in style but not in pretense. All projects are meticulously curated and expertly built by the best tradespeople in New York."

Lilly's work has been featured in Vogue, House Beautiful, Traditional Home, Elle, Elle Decor, Veranda and Lonny. And for good reason! 

Love the decor in these designs? Make sure to check out my SHOP DECOR page on the top of the blog for more amazing products! 

Living Better with Living Threads

Shopping, InteriorsLibby RasmussenComment

I’ve made it my mission to start to become a more conscientious consumer. Whether it’s wearing chemical-free deodorant or buying ethical, pasture-raised eggs, I’m slowly but surely learning more each day about the little things we can do as consumers to make a difference.  While I’ve always been aware and skeptical of the social and economic (damage) impact of purchasing “disposable” clothing and home goods, I’m just as guilty as the next gal at H&M.  Countless articles and documentaries have exposed the dangerous outcomes of low consumer prices and the strain and dangers it imposes on those overseas making these items.  Most notably, would be the awful treatment and work conditions of those who work in the textile industry. 

Sometimes with awareness, comes frustration.  I know I’m often torn with possessing this knowledge as a consumer, and not knowing where to go with it.  Then I met Amanda Zehner, founder and owner of Living Threads, a company dedicated to bridging artisans and sustainable markets around the world.  Essentially, Living Threads helps to empower artisans they work with by providing a reliable income while in turn, producing amazing quality woven goods to their consumers. Living Threads directly supports the artisans: allowing them to provide for their families while also supporting ancient traditions. 

What I found most incredible were the colors and the vibrancy of the fabrics.  Many of the threads are dyed with plants, vegetables, and fruits.  The table runners and napkins are one of a kind and are handwoven on traditional Mayan back-strap looms in Guatemala.

Here are some of my favorite items from Living Threads

Lyn Placemats from Nicaragua
Kus Napkins from Guatemala
Zuru Throw Blanket
Root Brush from Mexico
La Basico Striped Pillowcase from Guatemala

Make sure to stop by Living Threads in Reston or shop the store online and check out their Instagram, Twitter, & Facebook 
 

Monday Roundup

Libby RasmussenComment
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Let's Catch Up!

It's been a busy few weeks.  A lot of fun meetings and collaborations underway.  I'm really excited for the next few months and I can't wait to share it with you! If you're in need of catching up, here are a few of my more recent posts!  

Also, you might have noticed, I made some changes to my SHOP page.  I'm considering adding a section for Gents. What are your thoughts?

Source: Gray Malin

How To: Make an Avocado Rose

Food, How ToLibby RasmussenComment

If you follow me on Snapchat, you know I'm no stranger to topping my eggs, salads, or a piece of toast with an avocado rose.  There's also a good chance you've spotted some on Karen McLean's feed @secretsquirrelfood. They're hard to miss but are actually incredibly easy to make! Follow along for the easy steps!

1. Pick the Perfect Avocado. This can always be tricky, but when it comes to an avocado rose, you will actually want an avocado that is a little more firm.  If it's too ripe, you'll run the risk of it falling apart or having brown spots.  Really ripe avocados are great for guac, not so great for avocado roses.  Tip: A nealry ripe avocado's "belly button" if you will, will be green underneath when gently pulled off. A ripe avocado, for guacamole, will be slightly brown and will fall off easily. 

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2. Cut the avocado lengthwise and gently peel off the skin.  The perfect avocado will be firm enough to do so.  It's very important that you don't scoop the avocado out of the skin, as you would while making guacamole.  This will leave you with a dented avocado.  You need to pull the skin off piece by piece to keep the avocado smooth. Obviously, remove the pit as well. 

3. Slice Evenly Across. Lay the avocado down and begin slicing it thinly and evenly from one side to the other. Move slowly enough to make sure you aren't bringing up any pieces on the knife. 

4. Slowly Fan Avocado. Create a semi-circle by fanning the slices out.  Make sure the slices are still touching one another on the sides, but don't be afraid to really spread them out for a larger, more spiraled avocado rose. 

5. Spin into a Rose. Slowly cupping the sides, continue to gently spin the slices into a rose. Make sure it's tight enough that the outer edge of the rose stays neatly on the sides. However, you want it to look like a rose, (kinda) so keep it loose enough to keep the blossoming effect.  Tip: Use a little lemon juice to keep the rose from browning. And remember to move it with a spatula if you are plating it or placing it atop a salad, or piece of toast. Tip: It helps if your cutting board is a little damp. 

Make sure to follow me on FacebookPinterestTwitter,  & Instagram!
 

Products I love: The Multistick by Bite Beauty

BeautyLibby RasmussenComment

So truthfully, I didn't really start wearing lipstick until this year.  I always hated the sticky consistency and frankly, the upkeep of reapplication after every hour, or more. Then I received the Multistick from Bite Beauty to test out and now I don't leave the house without it. 

The Multistick is the ideal product for the low (or high) -maintenance gal on the go, who still likes a little cheek contour and lipstick now and then. 

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What it is: 
A multistick that applies like a cream and wears like a powder for weightless color application. Just apply with your finger or a brush on the eyes, lips, and cheeks. 

What it does: 
With 35% powder in each Multistick bullet, this silicone-free formula creates a soft focus finish that's blendable, breathable, and buildable. It features universal shades for the eyes, lips, and cheeks that compliment all skin tones and are formulated to use anywhere on the face. 

What it is formulated WITHOUT: 
- Parabens
- Sulfates
- Phthalates

What else you need to know: 
Bite Beauty products are free of petrochemicals and silicones.

In my kit, I was sent three shades: Blondie (nude beige) Macaroon (pink) and Cocoa (deep chocolate brown) 

The Multistick formula comes in 18 shades which can each be used as a lipstick, a blush or contour, or a soft eyeshadow.  They apply like a cream but look like a light powder, keeping you looking light and effortless.  

Everyday, I use the Cocoa shade under my cheekbones and along my forehead for a light contour. While it looks super thick and dark, the stick blends right lightly and evenly when blended with a brush. I use the medium-sized angled brush from my Sonia Kashuk brush kit to blend in the contour. 
On my eyelids, I use the Blondie shade for added color. This is where I love the creamy yet powdery consistency of the Multistick the most.  It's light enough to blend in with my Laura Mercier highlighter on my brow bone, yet creamy enough to stay put. Lastly, or my lips and cheeks, I use the Macaroon shade, which I highly recommend for any skin tone. 

 
 

Still interested? Check out this fun video about how the Multistick works! You can buy the Multistick here, at Sephora

Special thanks to Refine Boutique for my new favorite piece of clothing, this (similar) Rory Beca jumpsuit! Make sure you check out Refine and book your appointment to shop! 

Photography via: Beautezine and Libby Rasmussen

The Only Cookie Cut-Out Recipe You'll Ever Need

FoodLibby RasmussenComment

This past year, on my 26 Before 26 List  I noted that I wanted to create a little recipe book, using the recipes from friends and family.  It's been a great way for me to connect with those who have contributed as well as keeping track of new and old favorites of mine.  Most notably, is the recipe my wonderful Mother submitted, my Grandma's Christmas Cookie Cut-Outs recipe.  I've used this recipe countless times for traditional cut-outs to Drake and Frank Ocean lyrics.  This time, I was feeling a little homesick and made Wisconsin cookies using my favorite cookie cutter

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Ingredients

1 cup sugar
1 cup softened butter
3 eggs
4 cups sifted flour
3 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla

Instructions

  1. Using an electric mixer combine sugar and butter until well blended.
  2. Add eggs one egg at a time. Add vanilla.
  3. In a separate bowl combine flour, baking powder and salt. Gradually add dry ingredients to the wet ingredients.
  4. Refrigerate dough for a minimum of 4 hours.
  5. Roll out dough and cut out shapes with cookie cutters.
  6. Bake at 400 degrees for 5 - 10 minutes. Cool before frosting and decorating.

Lastly, for the royal icing, I followed this helpful video from The Joy of Baking and separated the frosting into individual bowls for the different colors.  

You can shop some of the supplies here!
Happy Baking!

My Interview about DC on Krrb

TravelLibby RasmussenComment

A few weeks ago I had a great interview on Krrb, "Locals Share What Gives Washington DC Its Distinct Flavor"
Check out my responses in the article or below!
 

If you had to explain the vibe of DC in one sentence to an outsider, what would it be?
LR: A city of young, passionate, type-A’s who work hard and brunch harder.


We know certain foods are synonymous with different cities. What foods or recipes would you say best represent DC?
LR: While most would probably say a half smoke, I think great crab dip or Hank’s Oysters and a fresh orange crush by the waterfront rep DC pretty well.
 

And what local restaurants do you frequent?
LR: A little bit of everything. Thip Khao for amazing Loation food in Columbia Heights.Maketto for the best bao buns and coffee on H Street. Rose’s Luxury on Capitol Hill for the obvious reasons. (Quit complaining about the line and hire a Taskrabbit to get your food.) The Red Hen to feel like you’re getting a home-cooked meal in Bloomingdale. Fiola Mare in Georgetown for the freshest seafood tower. DC really has it all. You just can’t get stuck in the Founding Farmers and Old Ebbitt Grill tourist traps. Explore the city and try new places.


Which music style would you say best represents Washington DC?
LR: I think was makes this city so great is the cultural and regional influences. To narrow it down, I feel as though the music scene that comes into 9:30 Club sums up the mixed bag that DC caters to. Just this past year they’ve had the range of Beach House, Years & Years, Shakey Graves, to Pusha T, and DC favorite White Ford Bronco.


Are you fans of any local bands or musicians?
LR: I was actually just introduced to music by Aaron Estes of Black Hills not too long ago. I love a good synth album now and then for summer rooftop relaxing and his song, “Glass” sets the scene perfectly. I’m also a big fan of folk and bluegrass and try to make it to theKingman Island Festival in DC every year. It’s a great way to hear more local talent, even if it’s just a random group sitting in a circle jamming.


If you had to describe one design style or local designer as best representing DC, what or who would it be?
LR: Traditional and predictable. Not in the worst way but I’m always reminded of how vanilla DC’s style is when I go up to NYC and see the variety.
 

Which stores or shopping destinations would you say summarize the fashion/style of DC locals?
LR: J.Crew is the first that comes to mind. It’s a great one-stop shop for suits and office attire and also a fun sundress for the weekend. I also love Tuckernuck for both men and women’s clothing and accessories. It’s preppy, it’s professional, it’s very DC. It can be a challenging place to find inexpensive antiques and flea market finds in the city. When I want to go on a “hunt” I head straight for Loudon County, Virginia to my all-time favorite,The Old Lucketts Store. You can find everything from deer antlers to crystal decanters to a clawfoot bathtub. I highly recommend taking the trip in fall when they sell pumpkins and spiked apple cider next door.
 

And lastly, where do locals gather to hangout and enjoy the best of DC?
LR: You can usually find my girlfriends and I on 14th Street enjoying a glass (or four) of rosé or an Aperol Spritz at Pearl Dive. Sunday brunch at Le Diplomat is always a must. And I can’t get enough of the burrata and burgers at Duke’s Grocery. Extra truffle oil please.

Thanks again for the interview Krrb! 
Remember to follow me on Snapchat and Instagram for more DC ideas. 

Photo Source: Hense

How to Successfully Wear Your Clap Back

Shopping, BeautyLibby RasmussenComment

Sometimes you just got to speak your mind via fashion. Thankfully, Jac Vanek does just that.  With hilarious shirts, clutches, and phone covers, there's bound to be something that really speaks to you.  This clutch in particular, said the words loud and clear.  Too often I've had moments of seeing over plucked, or over drawn brows and thought, WHATARETHOOOOSE?! 

Now, I just have a clutch say it for me.  #clapbacksuccess  

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Also, while we're on the subject of brows, I'd like to give a huge shout out to the ladies at Shobha for keeping my brows looking natural and shapely.  At Shobha, I get my brows threaded about every 5 weeks. I also use Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Wiz and Brow Gel. 

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