Saturday, November 25, 2017

4 Must-Have Drugstore Skincare Products!

Skincare gadgets, tools and "extra" skincare products are my jam right now. I've been obsessed with buying anything and everything that's supposed to improve my skin, be it a crazy new gadget or a luxurious serum or cream. BUT because I'm so obsessed with buying literally everything and anything, that means that I need to be weary of how much each product costs.

I've put together a list of a few of the awesome skincare finds I've been using lately that don't break the bank. You and your new, amazing skin can thank me later!

F A C I A L   S T E A M E R -- $30

One of my absolute favorite things to do on a weekly basis is give myself a long, luxurious facial. When you go to get a professional facial, they most likely will use steam to open up your pores. I recently got one on amazon to use at home and it has been SO nice.

Doing an at home facial and masking at home always makes my skin feel great afterwards, but with the steamer my skin feels softer than ever. I've seen so many expensive steamers out there (the Panasonic one is almost a hundred bucks!) but I turned to Amazon and found this affordable option

I love essence. This one by ELF is the first one I've tried and it's made me excited to look into other brands out there that sell affordable essences! When I first heard about them on YouTube, the only ones I really heard about were by the brand SK-II but their essence runs for $179. WHAT? Definitely out of price range.

So when I was browsing through Target and saw that ELF had come out with a new skincare line and they were offering an essence and it was under $20 even...I was sold! It is DEFINITELY worth the buy. This essence has become a staple in my skincare routine.

Even when I decide to skip my usual 14-steps and just stick to cleansing and moisturizing, I still always put on this essence before my moisturizer. I love it and it's now a must-have for me!

(PS -- ELF is currently having a 50% OFF SALE until 11/27/17 for all orders over $30! Take advantage!)

H Y A L U R O N I C   A C I D   S E R U M -- $5-$15

Serums are another amazing step I've added that has made a day and night difference with my skin. hyaluronic acid sounds kind of scary (at least it did to me at first) but it's meant to help your skin retain moisture and revitalize the outer layers of your skin. That means softer, younger-looking skin!

This one is the exact one that I have from TJ Maxx. You can also try this one from Amazon if you prefer.

Bonus: I also love Vitamin C serum for my skin. I got my two serums from TJ Maxx for $5 each (seriously such a steal! I always recommend TJ Maxx or Ross for awesome skincare finds!) but you can also get them on Amazon for pretty cheap. I honestly love Amazon for everything. With Prime it shows up to my door in 2 days and I never even have to leave my house! Which I never do. LOL
Facial sponges have CHANGED MY LIFE. Okay, not really, but it's made washing my face so much easier! Facial sponges come to you paper thin and dry. Once you add water they puff up and are so great for getting off your cleanser or face mask without getting your arms + the skin all soaked!

Basically it makes rinsing off your face so much neater. I've seen them at Target sold by EcoTools for $5 for 3 of them. You can also buy them in bulk on Amazon to save some money. If I remember correctly this is the one I ordered but you can literally get them in packs of 50+ if you want! 

What low-end skincare products have you been loving lately? Let me know in the comments so I can try it out! 

Monday, November 20, 2017

Pet Treater Dog Subscription Box Unboxing & Review

My fur baby recently turned 1 year old! Everyone who knows me knows that Solo is absolutely 100% my spoiled rotten baby. Back towards the end of September, I planned ahead and started looking into pet subscription boxes for his October 26th birthday. I ended up deciding on Pet Treater because it was one of the cheaper boxes and it looked like it came with a lot of cool stuff!

P E T   T R E A T E R   C O N S

I ordered the box on September 29th. Unfortunately for me, it took almost exactly one month for our first box to arrive. After reading through their FAQ page, I saw that it estimated 14 business for the first box. So I sent a couple emails to customer service (who basically just told me that it was on its way), waited some more and then the box finally arrived. On October 26th. Literally the day of his birthday.

So while it took forever to get there, it was still happy that the box at least arrived in time for his birthday!

Another down side to the box is that one of the dog toys (the duck) broke in a little over a week. Solo isn't an aggressive chewer by any means except when it comes to plastic toys. He still has his first-ever stuffed toy from when he was a puppy! So I was shocked when the duck--his absolute favorite toy from the box--had busted open.

What we got:
  • A crinkle & squeak monkey toy
  • A stuffed duck that *did* make quacking noises (in the video you'll see I can't figure it out)  
  • Two Halloween (ish) themed bandanas
  • A padded mat to kneel on while giving your pup a bath
  • A dog-themed drawstring backpack 
  • A baggie full of homemade dog treats
  • A decorated pumpkin cookie
  • A pack of doggie safe oreos
  • Some rolled fish skin dog treats
There were also a few gift cards and other things in there for the "human," but to be honest I mostly cared about what was in there for Solo! 

P E T   T R E A T E R   P R O S

I loved the stuffed toys that Solo got! They were perfect for him because he loves soft toys! I thought it was perfect that the crinkle-monkey was in there as well because Solo loves that crinkle sound. I honestly wish that they had traded some of the human things in the box for more toys, but oh well.

The doggie Oreos ended up being a hit with him. He loves eating them (although he's not a picky dog at all when it comes to food) and they didn't give him a tummy ache, which some different treats and foods do. The homemade dog treats were a thumbs up as well, as was the cute-AF pumpkin cookie! 

The fish skin treats were an interesting addition. At first I thought it was kind of weird but thinking about it, this was part of the reason I signed him up for a box -- so that he could have a ton of new stuff to try out that I would never think of getting him! 

F I N A L   T H O U G H T S

I'm not sure how I feel about this box. At the time of posting this, I'm still waiting on my second box. I know it hasn't been but I feels like I've been waiting FOREVER. Especially because I got the shipping notification on the 9th of this month and now on the 19th, I'm still waiting for it to arrive. I'm hoping that when the second box gets here everything in it will be amazing so that it's at least worth it!

Do you get a subscription box for your pet? Which one do you use? Let me know in the comments below!  

post signature

Sunday, November 19, 2017

Welcome to the New Mo Explores!

I decided that it was time to relaunch/resurrect/revive my blog! Believe it or not, I've been gone from the blogging world for nearly two. years! Isn't that insane? It doesn't seem like I've been gone for that long and if you follow me on social media then you would know that I haven't been completely gone all this time!

W H E R E   H A V E   Y O U   B E E N ?

In the time that I've been gone, I've been concentrating my efforts on my YouTube channel. I'm an internet-girl and content creator at heart so I could never fully leave! In this past year or so I've posted tons of videos on planners, organization, skincare, makeup and more. My fiancĂ© and I also started a vlog channel together! 

Since I've been gone, I've also started my own biz! I've been working from home for almost a year now as a video editor for YouTubers! If that's something you're interested in or want to hire me you can learn more on my biz site Mo Explores Media.

On a more personal level, so much has happened in the past year and a half that I've been MIA. Brandon and I got engaged in August of 2016. We've been planning our wedding and are now less than 2 months away! We have spent the last two years living together here in Phoenix/Scottsdale, but as of this week we will be officially moving back to the dirty-T. Tucson, here we come! There is, of course, so much more that's happened but if you can check out a lot of what's happened on our vlog channel so don't forget to head over there to check it out!

W H Y   R E L A U N C H ?

While I don't think I'll ever stop making YouTube videos, there's just so much I want to talk about and share, review, etc! However, between my client work, my personal channels and general life responsibilities, adding more videos to my work load would just be too much!

I recently remembered how much I loved blogging and how much easier it was to manage than a YouTube channel. That's not to say that blogging is easy work, whatsoever. It just takes a lot less time for me personally to regularly post new content to a blog than it does to a YouTube channel!

By resurrecting my blog I can now create corresponding blog posts for each of my videos for those of you who are in more of a reading mood. I can also post about some of the things I want to share with you guys that doesn't necessarily warrant a full-length YouTube video!

S O ,   W H A T ' S   N E W ? 

If you haven't been following Mo Explores through the journey it's taken on YouTube, then you wouldn't know. But a lot has changed. Previously, Mo Explores was based on my adventures. Hiking, conventions, travel etc. My life and direction has changed so much, so naturally so would my brand!

So, let me introduce the *new* Mo Explores to ya...

Mo Explores is an Arizona-based lifestyle community. It's a space to help twenty-somethings survive and strive through that little thing called adulthood! Whether you need productivity tips, beauty or skincare advice, organization help, want to learn more about running a blog or biz, or just have general "adulting" questions, this is the place for you!

I know being an adult is a struggle. You don’t have to struggle alone. That’s what the internet is for! Just google it am i right? 

So whether it’s welcome or welcome back, i hope you’ll stick around! There’s so much more to come! 

What would you guys like to see more of on my blog?
Let me know in the comments!

post signature

Saturday, November 18, 2017

Productivity Tips for Boss Babes

Whether you're still in college, are trying to keep focus at your desk job or are like me and are living that #freelancelife, productivity is something we all struggle with form time to time. Since I work from home and follow my own rules, being productive takes a lot of discipline and focus on my part.

Today, I'm sharing a few of my favorite productivity tips for the days I'm struggling to stay on-track!

T I M E   B L O C K I N G

When it's really difficult for me to buckle down and focus, I start with some really strict time blocking. Typically, I'll assign certain tasks to various times of the day. I try to be realistic about how much time I'll need for each task, but I don't over do it either. For bigger projects, I block out at least an hour so I can tackle at least a big chunk of a project.

Once the time slot for that project is over, I move on to the next project regardless of if I'm finished or not. This allows me to work hard and be productive, but also prevents burn-out on a project. By scheduling smaller chunks of time a couple times of day to work on something, I can finish a project within a week without getting sick and tired of it!

H A V E  A  D E D I C A T E D  W O R K   S P A C E

I'm sure you've heard this one before! While I love working from the comfort of my couch or bed, sometimes my head just isn't in the right place for that. On days when you really need it, a clean, dedicated workspace is an absolute must-have.

This place should be tidy, clear of distractions, well-lit and just overall inviting! Nothing will turn you off of working more than trying to work in a messy space. For me, a great workspace has awesome natural lighting, minimal decor and is quiet and tidy.

T A K E   S T R A T E G I C   B R E A K S 

This tip is basically just a spin off of the Pomodoro Technique. This technique basically stops you from letting a 5 minute social media break turn into an hour and a half of watching vlogs on YouTube (of which I'm totally guilty of).

To use the Pomodoro Technique, set a time for 25 minutes and get as much work done as possible. When the time is up, set another time for 5 minutes. Repeat this cycle two or three more times. On your last cycle, you get a longer, 15-20 minute break. Then start the entire thing all over again!

If you need breaks, this is a great way to feel like you're getting that rest without spending too much time procrastinating!

C H A N G E   Y O U R   S C E N E R Y

If possible, change up your scenery! If you're a student and working in your dorm isn't working for you, call up some friends for a study date. If you work from home like I do and are feeling uninspired at home, move to a coffee shop to get some work done! 

This tip might be a little harder for those of you at a desk-job. But even a change of scenery during your lunch break can help! 

Next time you're in a productivity rut, try some of these tips and let me know if they work out for you!

What are some of your favorite ways to buckle-down and get productive?
Leave me a comment below! 

post signature