Off the Mat is a monthly series in which I share what's going on in my life off the yoga mat. This post is not sponsored in any way, but it does contain affiliate links which means if you make a purchase through one of the links, YBC will earn a small commission. Thanks for the support!
Wow, guys, so I quickly checked last month's Off the Mat because #reflection, and I am blown away by the comments - thank you so much. I didn't see any of them until today because I got a really hateful comment a few months back, and while I normally have thick skin, I was feeling really fragile. I subsequently set-up the comment platform so that all comments are emailed to a moderator instead of to me. Woops, sorry for not replying but I'll be checking this post throughout the weekend so feel free to chime in and I'll respond. :) Ok, let's get to it.
It's official. I am obsessed with sweatshirt dresses. I wrote about my first find here, and then I found this fun cut out shoulder one I'm wearing above. It's also under $100, which is great because yesterday it was approximately one thousand degrees and today the high will be 70. Tomorrow it'll probably snow, so who wants to invest in a trendy dress when the weather is as unpredictable as a volcano?!
In other news, I have found the mother of all foundations and I am so over the moon in love with it that I feel like I need to share today. I'm actually blown away because I've talked before about how I try to stay away from most conventional bath and body products but I have never found fantastic natural counterparts. They always lacked something for me. Either they went on terribly, dried my skin out, or didn't last more than an hour. There was always something about them I didn't like. Now, full disclosure: Voula Beauty sent me a full range of their foundations because we are partnering up for an upcoming giveaway next month. I heard their product was great, so that's why I wanted to partner up. I did not, however, anticipate liking it so much that I'd toss out my Too Faced foundation! It's that good, people. I actually think I may do a Beauty Files post on it and demo how I use it just so you can see better. But just quickly, I am loving the coverage (buildable), the consistency (super smooth, feels like silk going on), and its staying power (all day, through a workout). All other foundations better watch it, there's a new kid on the block, and not only is this kid, like, the greatest kid ever, but it's also natural. I never thought it would happen, but I'm officially on board with a natural foundation.
Speaking of natural beauty, I'm partnering with an Australian natural beauty brand next month called Edible Beauty, and I've fallen in love with her serum and lotion (No3 and No4 here) for my neck and decolletage. Both products go on smoothly, absorb quickly, and leave my skin feeling super hydrated. I also love that their products are made using organic ingredients and don't contain any junk at all.
If anyone is in the market for some workout gear, I just discovered the brand Hylete, and their stuff is excellent (rivals Lululemon for sure). They're offering 40% off your entire purchase with code YBC. If you have a tough time with sports bras, you may want to try theirs - I like them a lot because they come up higher toward the armpit so there aren't any weird side boob folds going on, and they have a good amount of support.
Agora Skincare generously sent me their Anti-Aging line, and I was a huge fan of their Anti-Aging Mask, which contains PhytoCellTec™ Agran, a 100% natural Argan Stem Cells extract. It blends with Hyaluronic Acid, antioxidants rich plant oils and vitamins and I saw a noticeable difference after just one use. Excellent mask - I highly recommend it.
Om Matters sent me their Om Revolution® tank and I love what it stands for so I wanted to share. Their vision was to create a tank that could inspire meaningful conversation around what a peaceful revolution would look like to better the world around us. I feel like change starts within each of us. I can't change the whole world, but I can change how I show up and hope that it will positively affect the world around me. 10% of the proceeds from their eco-conscious, message-driven products being donated directly to ACLU.org. ACLU is a not-for-profit organization that works tirelessly to protect human rights and equality for everyone in our country.
So far this month I've read Small Great Things, which was excellent, and so relevant to what's going on today in our society. I also read Option B, which I found both moving and educational. I'm now at the tail end of Pitch Perfect, which is more of a business and marketing book, although if you're a talker and trying to get your talking game on point, you might want to read it. I'm also in the first third of Into the Water, which I just cannot get into. I'm trying though - I hate not finishing a book!
Listening To Lately
I've really gotten into the SuperSoul Conversations podcast. Everyone Oprah brings on is so inspirational and it's a real feel-good, self-improvement type of podcast.
I've also been listening to Sincerely, X - it's a spinoff of TED, but the speaker is anonymous. It may not always be 100% feel-good, but it's definitely a good listen if you're in the right frame of mind. Lots of interesting ideas and tools for self-reflection.
If you need some new tunes to add to your workout playlist, I'm really liking these: Fetish (good for warm up/cool down), Swish Swish (ignore Katy's first line and the line about a coupon, they are embarrassingly bad - but otherwise I love the beat and it's good for a hiit workout or cardio), and if you like hip hop Holla At Me Baby has a great beat.
I haven't been doing much traveling lately (hallelujah, cuz I really needed to catch my breath after this summer!) but I recently went down to New York City to teach at Pure Yoga, which was a lot of fun. We had a great group of people, and some familiar faces from past retreats and workshops. I'm looking forward to packing up in October and heading out to New Jersey, Colorado and Los Angeles and then to Michigan in November for various events.
Labor Day Weekend was a lot of fun. It was one of the last summer weather weekends, and even Buckles got to swim! Haha, this dog just kills me. He just hung out in the little kiddie pool I got for him all afternoon. He's getting older, though. He just turned 9 on September 10th, and I can tell his knee is acting up again. We're doing lots of bone broths and hoping for the best.
Ha, so the other day I got my lashes done (I do extensions, love them), and my lash technician's husband had Lasik surgery earlier and couldn't watch the baby. I suggested we push the date and reschedule but she was like, "Nah, he'll be ok!" Her babe was cool to hang out in a little play area she made for him but when he started to fuss, I offered to hold him and he loved it! He calmed down as soon as he was eye level with her, and it was awesome for me - I love babies! Too funny.
So, great news, after weeks of applications, paperwork, phone calls, and more back and forth than I ever wanted to do, I finally have health insurance! I'm psyched because like I said in last month's Off the Mat post, I'd really like to go to see my old therapist to just help weed through this depression I've got going on. It starts October 1st and I'm counting down the days.
I love the fall season, so I'm looking forward to things like chillier weather (Buckles already has a little pepper in his stepper) and Thanksgiving. I'm also going to try a little Gratitude Journal experiment for the month of October. While I naturally feel grateful daily, I thought it might be interesting to keep track of three things I'm grateful for each day in October. If anyone wants to join me, just lemme know down in the comments. I find that when you're actively looking for things to be grateful for, more beautiful things just seem to appear in your life. That's been my experience, anyway. I'm looking forward to sharing more on that at the end of next month.
I'd love to hear what's been going on with you in your personal life. Any fun new finds? Any struggles you want to get off your chest? Read or listen to anything good lately? Let's talk down below in the comments section.