Health, Wellness & Beauty, Wellness Wednesday

Wellness Wednesday: Isles of Paradise Self Tanning Drops

Genetics are a funny thing, aren’t they? I got my dark, thick,  hair and giant deep set eyes from my 100% Italian father’s side.I’ve got the same build as many of the women in my father’s family, as well as some of the characteristics of my 100% Italian maternal grandmother. One half  of my DNA is Italian, and I think that’s pretty obvious when you look at me or notice my absolute inability to talk without my hands flying around.

But then there’s my skin color. That’s where my 50% Irish side comes in. I have light skin with freckles. I’m not the lightest of the foundation shades, but no one is calling my skintone “medium.” I can (and have) tanned to a solid Medium before, but my time fighting cancer over the last four years made me put an end to my beach days without sunscreen and a huge umbrella and hat. (I also know that sun damage is the number one way to speed visible signs of aging on the skin, so vanity plays a part in my decision.)

The problem is that I love the look of a tan on me. I feel like with my very dark brown hair, almost-black eyebrows and brown eyes, I should have darker skin. I think I was meant to have a darker skintone, but there was a glitch. With my hair, brow and eye coloring and the fact that people who look like me often have medium skintones, it only seems right that my skintone is bumped up a few levels.

Me as a Baby

And oh, how I have tried to get there. I’ve used self tanning lotions, sprays, gels, mousses, gradual tanners and towelettes. I’ve done spray tans, both the airbrush and machine kinds. I’ve been orange, I’ve been streaky, I’ve been patchy and I’ve smelled like I bathed in DHA. I’ve gotten good results from airbrush spray tans, but I hate the way they look when they start wearing off. Until recently, I’ve relied on St Tropez Tanning Mousse (one for the body, one for the face). Anyway, I recently realized that St. Tropez was starting to turn me an orange color. I am not sure if they changed the ingredients but I am not the same color I use to be when I use it.

I checked online at Sephora.com, and saw Isle of Paradise Self Tanning Drops were the top rating tanning lotion. You add these drops into your regular face and/or body moisturizers and they tan you up. They come in Light, Medium and Dark shades. I went with Medium, because that’s the skintone I was meant to have, remember? I immediately did a small patch test.

While I was patching, I read through Sephora reviews of these self tanning drops in Medium. Still, I waited 24 hours after patching to make sure I didn’t have a reaction. and I liked the color. I didn’t, so on Night 1, I added one drop of the product to my Tula Day and Night Moisturizer and applied it to my face, neck and ears. I noticed a slight smell, but it wasn’t horrible and didn’t linger. It did feel sticky on my skin, but not too bad. I didn’t notice any color of my pillowcase the next morning either.

When I woke up the next morning, I was tan. Not orange and not streaky, and a good shade for my skin. I didn’t put face makeup on that day, because I wanted to have plenty of opportunities to inspect it and see if the color developed more (and I think it did, a little).

On Night 2, I was ready to conquer my body. For my body, I first dispensed enough of my moisturizer to cover one arm. Then I add six drops of the product to my moisturizer, mix it together and apply. I match the amount for my other arm. Then do the same amount of moisturizer and five drops of the product to apply to my stomach and back. For my legs, I dispense the amount of moisturizer I would normally use for one leg and foot and add six drops of product. Then I repeat on the other leg.

The Isle of Paradise Self Tanning Drops instructions say to add between 1 – 12 drops to your moisturizer. That’s a huge range! My suggestion is to start with one drop, see how it develops, then add two the next time, three after, and so on until you find your perfect mix. I am currently using four drops to every pump and a half of face moisturizer (which is the normal amount of moisturizer I apply to my face, neck and ears.

As far as packaging goes, A+. I like the design, the top stays on securely and the dropper works. No complaints there.


Me and Mom in Mexico when I was very tan!

A few suggestions I have for you after you patch test:

Exfoliate First. If exfoliation is not contraindicated with any skincare you are using, a good exfoliation before you apply the self tanner will help it look more even as it develops, as it won’t catch on any dry patches or dead skin.

Start Small. Again, start with the minimum amount of drops and add more each day until you achieve the color you want. It’s important to start with the minimum, as the few bad reviews I read seemed to be because the reviewers jumped right in with five or six drops and it sounds like they also didn’t use enough moisturizer.

Keep It Up. To maintain the color, I would alternate days of your moisturizer alone with the same amount of drops and moisturizer you used to get the tan. The moisturizer alone with help keep the skin hydrated so the tan doesn’t get patchy as you shed dead skin cells, and the every-other-day application of the self tanner and moisturizer will keep your shade of tan as is so it won’t fade.

Mix It Up. You need to realllyyyyy mix the self tanner drops into your moisturizer. If you don’t do that, you will get an uneven tan. After the moisturizer and drops are in the palm of your hand, stir them together with your other hand or rub your hands together for about 15 seconds to ensure they’ve melded into one product.

Don’t Be Stingy. Once you have your self tanner moisturizer cocktail ready, make sure you apply a generous amount everywhere. The best way to get streaky is to use only the little that’s left on your hands to apply to an area. When you can feel it dragging as you apply, you are making the streaks happen. I know better, and I still did that one night while using these drops. I dispensed a little less moisturizer then I meant to, so although I evenly covered my face, I didn’t get enough on my neck (and my neck is notoriously bad with self tanner to begin with). I woke up to some patchy areas on my neck where I hadn’t applied enough moisturizer. Did the same thing on one arm too. I think with any type of self tanning lotion, it’s best to use a little more than you think you need to ensure that it gets everywhere.

Take Your Time. Spend some time rubbing the cocktail in. I haven’t noticed any transfer on my sheets, even though I usually tan right before bed, and I think that’s because I spend a lot of time rubbing in the product so it really absorbs into my skin. I massage it in until I can’t feel anything on my skin, which usually takes several minutes. But I think it is a key factor in getting an even self tan.

The Easiest Part. Wash your hands after applying. This stuff will stain your palms if you don’t.

As far as color, the Isle of Paradise Self Tanning Drops give me the same type of color I have when I used to get real tans. Not orange, not olive, not red. Just 33 Year Old Megan tan. I don’t know if the drops react with your body chemistry and give you the type of tan you normally get, or if the color they give happens to be the same color I tan, but they work perfectly on me. If you are concerned about the color, you could try a bigger swatch of color on your stomach or somewhere that isn’t visible when you have on your everyday clothes to see how the color develops on you. My point is, I can only give you my experience with this color, and that may be impacted by my undertone and the way my skin looks when it really tans. But judged off the many reviews I’ve read and pictures I’ve seen, the Medium shade in particular seems to work on a lot of people.

The Medium drops have a green tint, which they claim is color correcting, as green cancels out redness. I don’t typically have any redness in my skin and I’m not convinced you can get color correction from a self tanner, but I can’t say for sure since I didn’t have any redness to start with. So jury is out on the color correction.

I really don’t have anything bad to say about this product! As long as I apply it correctly, it gives me exactly the type of tan I want. I am loving the Isle of Paradise Self Tanning Drops!

Have a beautiful day !

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Wellness Wednesday

Wellness Wednesday: My Favorite Beauty Products

For today’s Wellness Wednesday post I am talking about some of my favorite beauty products.

  • Ice Roller: This beauty costs $12. I use it in the morning and it helps with puffiness  under my eyes plus it feels good. The other day I had a headache and I put it on and I swear it made my headache go away. 

  • Tula Purifying Cleanser: I won this in a giveaway about a month ago and I’m obsessed. My skin has never been so soft or clear. I just ordered the ph balance and day and night cream and have been loving those so far too!

  • Peter Thomas Roth Pumpkin Enzymatic Dermal Resurfacer: I’ve been using this since the summer and it’s total game changer. After I use it my skin feel so soft and sooth and I haven’t had any of my usual winter dry skin this year. Also my makeup goes on so smoothly for a few days after I use it.

Have a beautiful Day!

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Wellness Wednesday

Wellness Wednesday: The importance of Water

I know this may seem like a no-brainer but if you are like me you don’t drink enough water. In fact, somedays I barely drink 8 ounces. One of my new years goals is to drink more water. I’m not the biggest fan of just plain ol’ water so I usually add fresh lemon or orange to my drink. In case you need a reminder, here are the benefits of drinking that H2o!

According to Elemental.com water can help you in the following 14 ways.

  1. Increases Brain Power and Provides Energy
  2. Promotes Healthy Weight Management and Weight Loss
  3. Flushes Out Toxins
  4. Improves Your Complexion
  5. Maintains Regularity
  6. Boost Immune System
  7. Prevents Headaches
  8. Prevents Cramps and Sprains
  9. Help Regulate Your Body Temperature
  10. Improves Backaches
  11. Improves Your Heart Health
  12. Prevents Bad Breath
  13. Takes the Edge Off Hangovers
  14. Puts you in a better mood

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Wellness Wednesday

Wellness Wednesday: Collagen

Well I guess I can admit it I hopped on the collagen wagon. On black Friday Tone It Up was offering 25% off there collagen so I bought 3 packs and I’ve been hooked ever since. As many of you already know I have cancer and as a result of the treatment I went through, my skin and hair have defiantly taken a toll. My hair is thin, my nails are week and my skin is dry. Ever since I have been using collagen I have noticed my nails are thicker, my hair is growing faster and my skin glows more. According to healtlline.com collagen is the most abundant protein in the body. It is available in your muscles, skin, blood, bones, cartilage and ligaments.

It doesn’t hurt to add a little extra for the following benefit:

  1. promotes skin elasticity
  2. holds together your bones and muscles
  3. protects your organs
  4. provides structure to joints and tendons

Have you hopped on the collagen bandwagon yet?

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Wellness Wednesday

Wellness Wednesday: Humidifiers

You know the old saying a moms always right? Well, my mom has been telling me for years to get a humidifier for years and I never listened. Well I finally bought one this year and she was absolutely right. I bought this one from Walmart and love it. I only have to fill is every 3 nights and you set the desired humidity level and once it reaches that level it stabilizes. It also has an automatic cleaner so you don’t need to worry about mold.

According to Live Strong the benefits of using a humidifier are:

  • Remedying Dry Skin in the Winter
  • Humidifiers treat dry skin and chapped lips during winter months. The indoor humidity levels of furnace-heated air can drop to 10 percent or less, notes Mount Sinai School of Medicine dermatology professor Hillard H. Pearlstein, M.D. on MotherNature.com. Humidifiers add much-needed moisture to the air and to skin. Use several small units near beds in the house and keep doors closed in rooms where a humidifier is in use.

    Soothing Dry Skin Conditions

    Just as humidifiers treat dry winter skin, it soothes skin dryness and itchiness. Low humidity levels exacerbate symptoms of eczema, notes the American Academy of Dermatology on its EczemaNet website. Psoriasis, thyroid disorders, topical medications for acne, and cosmetic products can also cause dry skin that can be eased with a humidifier.

    Treating Cold, Flu & Allergy Symptoms

    Humidifiers soothe dryness, irritation or itchiness in the nose, nasal passages, sinuses, mouth, throat and eyes. They help prevent nose bleeds in those prone to them when their nose is dried out, notes MayoClinic.com. Hence, humidifiers benefit people with a cold, flu or allergies.

    They even serve as a preventative measure, limiting or eliminating viruses and bacteria that thrive in dry air, explains the Aerias Indoor Air Quality Resource Center. However, over use of humidifiers can lead to growth of pathogens and allergens.

    Easing Asthma

    Children and adults with asthma often find humidifiers help their breathing, especially when the condition is compounded by a respiratory infection, says MayoClinic.com. Those with asthma should check with their doctor before using a humidifier, though. Humidifiers must be kept clean to keep the air free of asthma irritants. Humidity levels kept too high can also make things worse, prompting the growth of mold or mildew.

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    Fitness, Health, Wellness & Beauty, Lifestyle, Wellness Wednesday

    Wellness Wednesday: Tone It Up Frequently Asked Questions

    Hey everyone,

    A lot of you have been asking me about Tone It Up with the new year coming up. So I put together a TIU FAQ.

    • Is Tone It Up worth the money?
  • In my opinion absolutely. Tone It Up is expensive however you are buying a lifetime membership. When you pay the $150 you get all the past challenge pa me and all the future challenge packs plus the nutrition plan. I have been a member since 2013 and it’s the best $150 I’ve ever spent because it’s changed my life.
    • Is Tone It Up vegan?
  • When you buy the plan you can buy the regular, vegetarian, or gluten free version.
    • Does Tone It Up work?
  • It works for me. Of course everyone is different, however; this is the first lifestyle I have followed and had success with. I say lifestyle because I don’t consider Tone It Up a doer. Prior to this I tried plenty of diets but never stuck to or had success with anything.
    • What is Tone It Up?
  • Tone It Up was founded by Katrina Scott and Karena Dawn according to the Tone It Up website it is “a community of women, inspiring and supporting one another to live the life of your dreams; fit, healthy, and happy!”.
    • When is the Tone It Up bikini series?
  • The bikini series is a challenge that begins each January and is completely free. It’s a great way to learn more about Tone It Up without paying for the program.
    • Where is the Tone It Up headquarters?
  • They are headquarter in Manhattan Beach, California.
    • What is Tone It Up studio?
  • Studio Tone It Up is a monthly subscription app where you can do live or on demand workouts with the Tone It Up Trainers. There are varies categories such as kettlebells, abs, arms, legs, etc.. You can try it for free for 5 days!
    • Is Tone It Up free?
  • No, Tone It Up cost $150 for a lifetime membership.
    • What is Tone It Up protein?
  • Tone It Up Protein is a plant based protein that Tone It Up makes and is sold on Toneitup.com, Target or at Whole Foods. It’s so good, I love it, especially the chocolate!
    • How did Tone It Up start?
  • It’s actually a really cute story. I’ll direct you to a Forbes article that talks about how they started Tone It Up. Click here for the article.
  • Hopefully I answered all of your questions. Feel free to reach out to me if you have anymore!
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    Wellness Wednesday

    Wellness Wednesday: Natural Deodorant Reviews

    For today’s Wellness Wednesday we are talking about deodorant and in particular natural deodorant! I made the switch over to natural deodorant about a year ago and I’ve spent the year trying to find the best natural deodorant!

    I’m going to start with my favorite and then give you a review of each one.

    My favorite is Kopari Coconut natural deodorant.

    The deodorant smells good, goes on clear and stays clear, and doesn’t leave you smelly at the end of the day. It’s also really smoothing and moisturizing. When you do get your sweat on you smell like coconut!

    Toms natural deodorant was the cheapest and easiest option to find. I was able to go to my local Target and get it, however; I felt like I smelt funky by the end of the day when I used it. And if I went to the gym I reapplied before and after my workout in fear I would smell bad.

    Schmidt’s Natural deodorant was the first one I tried. The review were good on Amazon and I was able to order right on the website. I thought this was ok, my biggest complaint is it didn’t go on clear and often got on my clothes. I do feel it kept from smelling through my day but I had to reapply before a workout.

    Finally, the last deodorant I tried was Green Tidings natural deodorant. This was also available on Amazon and had the cleanest ingredients, however; I only wore it for a few days before I had to throw it out. I felt like I smelled immediately after putting it on and didn’t think it worked at all.

    Are you thinking of making the switch to natural deodorant?

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    Wellness Wednesday

    Wellness Wednesday

    Happy Wellness Wednesday babes!

    I don’t know about you all but my skin has been so dry! I’ve been loading up on lotion and recently bought the Philosophy Amazing Grace Firming Lotion and my legs have never felt better!

    A few months ago I joined Dollar Shave Club and I’m so happy I did. Yes, this is a men’s shaving club but my legs have never been smoother or stayed smooth longer.

    I pair this with the philosophy lotion and my legs feel like a million bucks!

    I decided a year ago I was going to finally invest in a nice face cream and I’m so glad I made the decision. Charlotte Tilbury’s Magic Cream was recommended to me by a coworker and it’s amazing and well… MAGIC. My face lines have started to go away and I don’t have my usual dry spots that show up every winter.

    And my last winter skin must-have is my favorite self tanner. Girls, I’ve tried everything and nothing compares to the St. Tropez Tanning Mousse. It gives you the most even tan. I also might be a jersey girl but I don’t like an orange tan and St. Tropez gives you the perfect tan glow!

    Well, I hope you have a great Wednesday and enjoyed this weeks Wellness Wednesday!

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    Wellness Wednesday

    Wellness Wednesday 12/5/2018

    Hi! 

    On Wednesdays we are all going to wear pink ok? No sorry lame joke from one of my favorite movie Mean Girls. But for real on Wednesday’s I am going to do Wellness Wednesday which will be all about health and beauty, two of my favorite things!

    I don’t know about you all but my skin has been so dry and fine lines have been popping up everywhere. I picked up this Jade Roller from Amazon a few months ago and I’m so happy I did. I’ve been using it nightly and have noticed a difference in my skin.

    According to InStyle the most well-known benefit of using a jade roller is that it helps to reduce puffiness and inflammation in the face due to stagnation of the lymphatic system. A jade roller can help to stimulate the lymphatic system, which in turn reduces inflammation and puffiness. Other benefits include brightening complexions, tightening pores (especially if you put it in the fridge for a few minutes before using), helping to reduce the appearance of fine lines, and increasing blood circulation, just to name a few.

    You might be wondering what I use with my jade roller? I’ve been using Rosehip oil and it feels amazing. I don’t have oily skin so I don’t breakout but those of you with oily skin might not be able to use oil on your face I buy mine off Amazon and it’s Radha Rosehip Oil. Rosehip oil has nourishing fatty acids, which along with water, is the main ingredient in most moisturizers.

    Well that’s all for my first Wellness Wednesday! I hope you all have a wonderful hump day!

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