Off the Mat is a series on YBC that shares bits and pieces about what goes on off the yoga mat, and in my everyday life.
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Disclaimer: Off the Mat posts are not sponsored, but many of the products I mentioned were sent to me (#bloggingperks!). I've noted when that's been the case, and as always, I only recommend products I truly enjoy and would purchase for myself. This post contains affiliate links, which means YBC earns a small commission when you check them out.
I did a bit of traveling this past month, starting with a quick weekend trip to Boston for a partnership with Kimpton (more about that in a few months).
I brought along some Raw Rev bars which they'd sent my way a few weeks ago. May favorite flavor was the caramel and sea salt - delicious.
Most recently, I went to Costa Rica for what was meant to be a much needed mini vacation and scouting trip for future retreats, but it ended up being mostly miserable thanks to some ceviche I ate that gave me a brutal bout of food poisoning. It's been a week and I'm still not feeling like my normal self (although I am much, much better). I likely won't be eating ceviche any time soon! This swimsuit is a few years old but below are a coupon other peacock suits I found:
But let's talk what I will be eating! Square Organics sent me a box of their bars. They're chocolate covered (no complaints there) and taste great. You can use code yogabycandace for 20% off if you want to give them a try.
Once I finished the aforementioned novel, I learned that the movie adaptation is up for an Oscar, so I rented it and watched it on the plane home from Costa Rica. It was great, but the book is better.
I also saw A Perfect Day, which was both educational and hysterical. It's truly a beautifully written wry script and the cast is great.
Hypnosis - About six weeks ago or so, Hello Mind gave me full access to their hypnosis app called HelloMind developed by Danish hynotherapist Jacob Strachotta. I was almost nervous to try it out but I've been really stressed out the last few months and figured I had nothing to lose by giving it a try. The first time I used it, I fell asleep within legit two minutes. Maybe I should've done it seated, but it was a sleep hypnosis so I felt like laying down was the best bet. There are more than 250 treatments ranging from stress to insomnia to phobias, and there are varying lengths (some as short as five minutes), so it really is useful even for people who are pressed for time. It's $8.99 per treatment session, and it's available in English and Danish for iTunes Store Here or Android Store Here.
Sledding - #OperationHaveMoreFun is still going strong! During a particularly nasty snowstorm a few weeks back, I went sledding and had the best time.
Adult coloring - I've also spent some time coloring (it's actually incredibly relaxing!), and now I want to boost my coloring game with these.
when i was around six years old i had this diary that had a lock with a key. every single day i wrote: today I played with Amy (my neighbor and best friend). on feb 15th i wrote: today is my BARTDAY!!!! 😂😂😂 it's been a running joke for years between friends and family, who call or text and write wishing me a happy bartday😂, so thanks so much for all the kind words and BARTDAY wishes. I'm so thankful for my friends and family today and every day. 💜 #yogabycandace #ybcBARTDAY
Birthday celebrations - It was also my birthday on the fifteenth, and my parents helped me celebrate with dinner and some homemade carrot cake.
Salt Cave - A few weeks back, I went to a salt cave in Ridgefield, Connecticut. It was cool - this woman turned what would've been your typical office space into this salt cave with antigravity chairs. You sit there with a few other people and listen to a guided meditation. I found it pretty relaxing, but if I'm being honest, I found the owner to be quite abrasive and I would not return, nor would I recommend this particular location to others. I hate being a customer and being treated like I'm an inconvenience. The salt cave itself is a cool experience, and I would do it at a different location if I were to go again.
Smooth Skin! I absolutely loathe buying razors. Loathe. I find them stupidly expensive, and they're one of those products that you buy essentially knowing you're going to eventually throw them out. That alone irritates me to no end, so when LaserAway reached out to see if I wanted to partner up, I jumped at the chance. Now, I've done laser hair removal before, but this was an entirely new experience. I'll do six sessions with them in total, but even after just one session, I have seen a tremendous decrease in hair regrowth. So here's how laser hair removal works, just in case you're new to it.
How it works: A beam of light is aimed at your hair. The light is then absorbed by the pigment, which damages the hair follicle enough to delay regrowth. The success rates vary from person to person, but like I said, even after one session with LaserAway, I've seen a dramatic decrease in hair regrowth. In fact, I've probably only shaved four times total in the last six weeks since having it done. The whole experience was really nice right from the start. I visited their office in New York City, which has a cozy waiting area at the front and a number of treatment rooms that feel modern, clean and posh. My nurse was so personable and kind. I love that she chatted with me as she worked, and moved quickly and efficiently along both legs so I was in and out of there in about fifteen or twenty minutes. Everyone is different when it comes to pain, but for me, this didn't hurt at all. It sort of feels like being snapped by a rubber band repeatedly, which is to say that it doesn't exactly make you feel warm and fuzzy, but it's absolutely tolerable. The particular laser she used also had a stream of cool air coming out of it, so it really minimized the pain. I'm excited to go back soon, and when I do, I'll report back with a video on my entire experience.
New Skincare - In our last podcast on the exclusive section of the YBC app (here is it for iTunes and Google Play), I mentioned how I dealt with awful acne about two summers ago just due to stress and hormonal imbalances. As I've balanced my hormones and decreased my stress, it has, for the most part, sorted itself completely, but I've been left with some mild superficial scarring on one side of my face. I am considering some sort of peel or microdermabrasion but I wanted to try something less heavy duty (and expensive) first. I got these pads from Sephora, and have noticed a visible difference in the texture of my skin after just one use. I use them maybe three times a week, and they've been really helpful in evening out the texture of my skin. I also like that they don't contain parabens, sulfates, or phthalates.
Osea Malibu also recently sent me a few of their products and I am loving their essential hydrating oil. I've been using it at night after the bath or shower on my face and absolutely love how soft it makes my skin.
Shoes and a clutch - The RZ team sent these gorgeous braided sandals for my trip to Costa Rica and I love them because they go with cut offs just as easily as they go with my little black dress and neutral Fontem clutch seen above. The clutch is absolutely beautiful, and I can't say enough about the craftsmanship - it's handmade in Italy.
Below are a few other casual sandals from the Rachel Zoe line at all different price points. I find that they run true to size and are exceptionally well made.
Style watch - Flared cropped jeans are so huge right now and I just cannot get behind them. I am into the straight cropped jeans, although full disclosure, since I'm petite, most "cropped" jeans reach my ankles, but I am not really into the flared cropped look. But who knows - I wasn't into the 90s revival of chokers and velvet and now I've come around... I'm curious to hear your thoughts on the flared cropped trend.
That's about it on my end! I'd love to hear what's been going on in your life off the mat! Feel free to share any new finds or fun activities down in the comments section below!