What to pack in your carry-on to save your pregnancy glow from traveling.
I’m a firm believer in the importance of self-care. Pregnancy can be a difficult time to remember to take care of you, between all the preparation, the doctor’s appointments, the anxiety and fatigue. And when you travel, it’s easy to forget to be extra good to ourselves. But be careful, when you combine travel and pregnancy, you have a double-whammy of not great self-care waiting for you at your destination.
Fear not, that’s pretty easy to fix. Here are 5 easy steps to take better care of your pregnant body while traveling.
1. Start as you travel. As they say, it’s the journey, not the destination. Whether you are flying, driving, or taking the train, travel is hard on your body. So don’t wait till you arrive at the hotel or at your parents’ house to start taking care of yourself — your mode of transportation is where good self-care should begin. Since dehydration is common during travels, drink more water than you usually do. It’s not only good for your skin, it’s also good for your body and baby!
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We hear all about how pregnant women are supposed to “glow,” right? Sometimes, though, that infamous glow takes a backseat to another common side effect of pregnancy: acne. Acne is quite common during pregnancy and can affect women no matter their skin type. The most likely cause of pregnancy acne is—you guessed it—hormones. During the first trimester especially, your hormone levels increase, along with your skin’s production of natural oils. An increase in the hormones called androgens causes your skin to overproduce an oily substance called sebum. Sebum clogs pores and can also cause bacteria buildup and inflammation, which then leads to breakouts.
Pregnancy acne is natural, and once hormone levels even out post-pregnancy, the acne usually disappears. It's safest for you, and your growing baby, to avoid heavy-duty acne medication, but that doesn’t mean you have to suffer through breakouts for nine months. Here are some safe, at-home solutions that can help you deal with pregnancy acne.
Amend your cleansing routines. You want to be kinder to your skin, so stick to two gentle face washes a day. Washing more than two times a day can overstimulate your oil glands, which can lead to more breakouts. When you do wash (ideally at the end of the day or after a sweaty workout), choose calming cleansers free from alcohol and oils. It’s suggested you use lukewarm water to rinse and avoid harsh steaming water on the face. Since your hairline is close to where acne may form, you also want to be careful of the shampoo you’re using. Shampoo every day using a gentle, pregnancy-safe wash like Nine Naturals Citrus+Mint Nourishing Shampoo. If you find acne breakouts in other areas, follow the same guidelines and check out Nine Naturals Citrus+Geranium Soothing Body Wash.
Be mindful of your diet. If you’re expecting, you’re probably already hyper-aware of the foods you’re eating. But if you find you’re dealing with problem skin all of a sudden, you might do a diet check-in. Are you focusing on eating whole foods and foods that have been minimally processed? Are you getting hefty daily doses of veggies and fruits? Are you doing your best to avoid sugar? Are you drinking enough water? The food you eat makes a difference in your skin, so be sure you’re being mindful of what you’re consuming. Some foods that make your skin happiest include avocados, salmon, and leafy greens.
Go for straight-A’s. Speaking of food choices, upping your intake of vitamin A could help out with your pregnancy acne. Vitamin A is instrumental in keeping skin healthy. Avoid the supplements and go straight for the vitamin-rich foods like milk, fish, eggs, and carrots.
Change how you wear makeup. During pregnancy, you may find it helpful to switch up your makeup routine. Ditch the makeup that are oil-based and opt for water-based products with the label noncomedogenic; this means that the makeup is not pore-clogging. You could also try an oil-free moisturizer or moisturizing product to help maintain balance in your skin.
Notice the little ways you can take care of your skin. Acne is caused by bacteria, so the more you can avoid bacteria on your face (or wherever your breakouts occur), the better. Keep your hands away from your face, and try not to pick at the pimples. Change your pillowcases frequently as a defense against bacteria buildup. Keep your cellphone at a slight distance, and not pressed against your face. These small tricks can help you battle a massive amount of acne-causing bacteria.Talk with your doctor, because not all acne treatments are pregnancy safe. Pregnancy acne is a major pain, but it’s also usually temporary. With that said, it’s best to steer clear of chemically laden, and potentially dangerous, over-the-counter or prescription acne medications and treatments. If you want a natural at-home acne treatment, here’s a recipe we’ve tried: blend together raw honey, cooked (and cooled) oatmeal, and a touch of lemon juice. Apply to your skin and leave on for about 10 minutes. Wash off, then lightly moisturize. Save the intense acne treatments for postpartum, if you still find the need to restore balance in your skin.
How to get the most out of your baby’s first birthday
Our plan for Owen’s first birthday is to keep it small and intimate, at home. It’s not just that we are working with a smaller budget. We also recognize that the first birthday is, for the most part, more for the parents and the pictures than for our little guy. That said, no matter how intimate, if you want something memorable, a little preparation can go a long way. Here are 8 tips for planning your baby’s first birthday party and how to make the most of it.
- Keep the planning simple.
Life is busy. So rather than stressing myself out about organizing the party, I want to do my best to keep things simple. Why? Because if I keep things simple and organized, I’ll be more likely to actually enjoy the party too! Our little pals and gals only turn one once, after all. Finding a venue that’s both affordable and comfortable for you and your guests is key. We plan on doing Owen’s party at home, but there are many other cheap or even free options, like parks or a friend’s backyard or house.
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Love is in the air! As Valentine’s Day approaches, it’s time to think about the mothers in your life. Whether you’re treating your own mother, or another favorite mom you know, shower her with gifts that will make her heart skip a beat. We’ve come up with a selection of the most swoon-worthy Valentine’s Day gifts to show the mothers out there just how much you adore and appreciate them.
Give her a heart to wear on her sleeve. A single heart-shaped accessory adds just the right amout of festivity to a Valentine’s Day outfit, and you’ll get extra points for an item that holds up beyond a single holiday. Go for a scarf with a delicate heart pattern or striking heart-shaped drop earrings. We love the Rebecca Minkoff Chain Heart Crossbody Bag from Nordstrom in flattering, feminine rose.
Think of her, and her little ones, for the most ideal gift. Whether you’re shopping for a mom-to-be, a new mother, or a veteran mom, self-care items are always on her mind. But since she’s a mom, she’s doubtlessly thinking about her kids, too, and is hyper-aware of the ingredients in what she’s bringing home. That’s why Nine Naturals hair care and body care products are so essential: you’re giving her a gift she needs, while also thinking of her kids. What could make her happier? Try the Nine Naturals Bath Bundle for a complete bath and body set.
The best gifts include her friends, too. You want to celebrate a mother you love on Valentine’s Day, but remember that for moms, the biggest treat of all is time spent with other adults. Find a present that encourages her to invite her friends over for an all girl’s get-together, while still making the gift fun and not purely functional. Wine glasses, funky food trays, or adorable dessert plates will help your favorite mom remember to throw a party for herself once in awhile, not just for the kids. Try the SNOW Rose Party set (and don’t forget to include a fancy bottle of wine) from goop.
Lingerie may seem cliche, but don’t rule it out. Lingerie is all the rage for bridal gifts, but once that bride has a baby, it’s “goodbye, frilly underthings” and “hello, nursing bras and granny panties.” Gifting a mother some sexy lingerie isn’t necessarily “for” her partner, but for her! Remind her that she’s still gorgeous and desirable, with or without stretch marks, by giving her a daring lingerie set. We’re partial to the Journelle Charlotte Camisole in black.
Bring out her glamorous side with bold accessories. What better time is there than Valentine’s Day to up the glam? Mothers often need a little push to go full-on glitz, so help the mom you love most go over the dazzling edge. Find glittery body art, a pair of glamourpuss sunglasses, or a set of audacious earrings to gift your favorite mother. We’re fans of Tom Ford’s Julianne sunglasses.
Give her pamper products to put the focus on her. It’s no secret that moms spend most of their days devoting themselves to other people. So giving a mother gifts that help her focus on herself are always a home-run choice. Find a luxurious bath set, soothing soaks, moisturizers, or full at-home spa day packages. A stellar makeup item is a great way to cap off a pampering gift set. Try the sweet Posh Pink Citron Spa set paired with the sassy Trust Fund Beauty Liquid Lipstick in Unapologetic.
For the perfect gift, think classic. For Valentine’s Day, standbys like champagne and chocolate covered strawberries are always a lovely choice, and can be made more thoughtful with a heartfelt note or some other sort of personalization. For a stunning and absolutely delectable selection, go for the Golden Edible chocolate covered strawberries from Saks Fifth Avenue.