DIY Dry Shampoo

Hellooooo, ladies! If you are an avid dry shampoo user such as myself, you will love this post! I am a dry shampoo junkie. I go through cans and cans and cans. Between work, school, maintaining a social life, enjoying hobbies, and working out, whose got time for daily hair washing and styling?! Quite honestly, I should have invested stock in Batiste a looooong time ago. However, as I’m on a mission to rid my apartment of all things toxic now more than ever, I almost fainted when I realized what goes into that aerosol can.

Upon researching how to make some dry shampoo of my own, I was blown away by how simple (and cheap!) it is to make. As an added bonus, I made mine with peppermint and lavender essential oils. They not only make the final product smell wonderful, but have functional benefits as well. The tingling sensation of peppermint on my scalp is also amaaaaazing! It’s truly incredible how much more I have incorporated essential oils into my life since joining the Young Living community. I have learned so much in such a short amount of time and know that I have only hit the tip of the iceberg in terms of what there is to learn.

Ingredients:

  • Corn starch: adds volume
  • Baking soda: cleanses
  • Peppermint essential oil: anti-itch
  • Lavender essential oil: anti-dandruff, strengthens hair, stimulates hair growth

What you’ll need:

  • A 4 oz. powder shaker with lid (I purchased this one from Amazon and it is perfect for this project!)
  • 1/4 cup corn starch
  • 1/4 cup baking soda
  • 6 drops peppermint essential oil
  • 6 drops lavender essential oil
  • Optional for brunettes: 1 tbsp. cocoa powder

What you’ll do:

  • Add all ingredients to the shaker, apply the lid, and shake well
  • Shake the dry shampoo onto the roots of your hair and use your fingers to work it into your scalp; allow to sit for roughly 5 minutes
  • Once 5 minutes has elapsed, brush the remaining dry shampoo through your hair and style as usual

DIY Rosewater

A friend, Arielle, reached out to me to see if I had any good techniques for making rosewater at home. At the time, I had no idea, but being that I love rosewater in cocktails, I was up for the challenge. I researched a variety of techniques and am sharing what I believe to be the simplest, yet most effective method. This project requires only three ingredients and takes only 15 minutes from start to finish.

Aside from being super yummy in cocktails, rosewater can be found in a number of natural beauty products due to its countless benefits for skin and hair. To learn more about these benefits and for more ideas regarding how to incorporate rosewater into your beauty regime, click here

I must note that a 4 oz. bottle of rosewater spray that I purchased several months back had a price tag of more than $10. Meanwhile, the stunning bunch of spray roses that I bought for the purpose of this project cost me only $6. Even more impressive, those roses yielded a whopping 32 oz. of product. I’ll let you do the math. Needless to say, it is completely worthwhile to make your own rosewater.

What other uses do you know of for rosewater? I’d love to hear about any and all ways of putting this beautiful elixir to use!

Note: I used spray roses because they are half the cost of regular roses, but yield the same amount of petals that a bouquet of regular roses would. Either variety will work perfectly. 

What you’ll need:

  • 1 bunch of spray roses
  • 4 cups of distilled water
  • 2 tbsp. of premium vodka to preserve freshness (optional but recommended)
  • A quart-sized mason jar

What you’ll do:

  • Remove the petals from the stems and place into a colander; rinse thoroughly
  • Add the petals and distilled water to a medium pot; simmer on low to medium heat for approximately five minutes, or until the petals have lost their vibrant color
  • Strain the mixture through a fine mesh strainer lined with cheesecloth; discard the cheesecloth and petals
  • Stir in the vodka, pour into a quart-sized mason jar, and store in the fridge for up to one month

Nature-Inspired Gallery Wall

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Hey, y’all! I had so much fun putting this gallery wall together, and I am so pleased with the results that I couldn’t help but share. Of course, there are countless ways in which a gallery wall can be put together, but I will at the very least share the thought process behind mine.

Personally, I think that gallery walls should share both a color scheme and a common theme (shout out to my poets who don’t know it). As you can see from the photos, I went for both vibrant and muted earth tones, with turquoises and greens taking center stage. Furthermore, I went with a nature-inspired theme, with some pieces being straightforward and other pieces being abstract.

I love gallery walls because they say so much about who you are and completely set the tone of your space. I also love photo ledge shelves in particular, because they allow you to switch up your gallery as often as you’d like without having to potentially put new holes in the wall. I purchased mine from IKEA, which offers two different sizes: large (pictured) and small.

While I typically love symmetry and perfect alignment, Dan dared me to step outside the box and stagger the shelves, and I’m so happy that I did! I think staggering them adds a certain element of interest. As it turns out, perfection is often quite boring. ;)

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Top shelf, left to right: 1) frame from World Market and art print by TheClay Play via Etsy // 2) frame from World Market and postcard print a freebie in an Anthropologie shipment // 3) frame from West Elm and art print by Cat Coquillette via Society6 // 4) tile gifted from Dan via Moravian Pottery & Tile Works in Doylestown, PA // 5) frame from Michael’s (old) and photography by yours truly

Bottom shelf, left to right: 1) frame handmade by Dan and antique map from MySunshineVintage via Etsy // 2) frame from World Market and art print by TheClay Play via Etsy // 3) frame from West Elm and art print from Amy Sia via Society6 // 4) frame from World Market and card from my ABM Happy Mail subscription // 5) frame a hand-me-down from my mom and photography by yours truly

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Four Ways to Update Your Wall Art and Photo Frames

…on the cheap. I’ll say it once, and I’ll say it again: I’ve got champagne taste with a beer budget. While I hope to one day have all of my walls adorned with original art, that’s simply not in the cards for me at this point in my life. However, to do things on a budget does not mean that you need to compromise elegance. Most of my frames were housing prints that I’d had since college. Sorry, Van Gogh. “Almond Blossoms” stole my heart for a while, but I had to move on.

Here are four simple and affordable ways in which I updated my bedroom’s wall art and photo frames:

ONE // I made a poster collage via Printstagram, which is a super awesome company that links its website to your social media accounts and allows you to print all kinds of lovely things. The size of the poster that I went with costs $25 and fits most poster frames. I already had a poster frame that was (of course) too big for this print, so I ordered a pre-cut mat board to make it work. Well, it all worked out for the best because I ended up loving the look of it with the mat so much more. Even with the mat in the picture (uh, no pun intended), this project should cost no more than $50 bucks.

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TWO // Do you have any photos that you’ve taken that you just love? Or at the very least have a photographer friend or family member whose work you really admire? Simply edit a couple of your/their shots and get them printed. As illustrated above, mat board makes everything look a touch more elegant. I edited these photos on iPhoto, got them printed through Apple and shipped to my doorstep, and framed them with pre-cut mat board from Blick Art Materials in Center City Philadelphia. All in all, the cost of this project is $15 for both frames.

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THREE // While Printstagram offers 4×4 prints, the minimum amount that you can order at a time is 24. Sometimes, you don’t want 24 prints. Sometimes, you want only one print for that adorable, 4×4 picture frame you scored at Homegoods. That’s what the Walgreens app is really great for. It links to your Instagram account and prints however many (or however little) photos you desire. I believe this particular print cost me 42 cents? 44 cents? Either way, it was cheap and I love it.

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FOUR // I couldn’t really capture the essence of how beautiful this print is, but it’s a “Map of the Plant Regions or Florae” and it’s an antique from an 1873 World Atlas. I love plants, I love maps, and I love antiques, so there shouldn’t be any mystery as to why I’m obsessed with this guy and wanted to showcase it. Unfortunately, being that it’s so old, its dimensions are bizarre and it doesn’t fit in standard-sized frames. Shocker: I went with mat board to solve this problem. However, this time I couldn’t go with pre-cut mat due to its odd size. The folks at Blick cut a custom mat board for me so that it now fits in a standard 11×14 frame. While custom generally means more money, this project still cost me less than $50. Vintage and antique maps can be found by the boatload on Etsy. Also, if you’re in the Philadelphia area, there is a vendor who sells beautiful maps at the Phila Flea Market.

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Simple Pleasures Sunday, Part III

Waterlogue. I'm usually against purchasing apps, but I'm obsessed with this particular app and would pay the whopping $2.99 again in a heartbeat. In a nutshell, it takes one of your photos and transforms it into a stunning "watercolor" in a matter of seconds. I love having art in my living space, but seeing the same prints everyday gets old. Because the cost of getting one of these images printed should cost no more than 10 bucks, you can regularly switch them out and not feel guilty about spending the money. I can't wait to get some of these masterpieces printed, as it will be an easy and super affordable way to freshen up my decor.

Waterlogue. I’m usually against purchasing apps, but I’m obsessed with this particular app and would pay the whopping $2.99 again in a heartbeat. In a nutshell, it takes one of your photos and transforms it into a stunning “watercolor” in a matter of seconds. I love having art in my living space, but seeing the same prints everyday gets old. Because the cost of getting one of these images printed should cost no more than ten bucks, you can regularly switch them out and not feel guilty about it. I can’t wait to get some of these masterpieces printed, as it will be an easy and super affordable way to freshen up my decor.

Spiky plants. I would like to introduce you to the newest members of my plant fam (yes, plants are people). Aloe vera plants not only look cool, but also serve a practical purpose in that they have medicinal properties. Now I'm just waiting for a good, old fashion sunburn...in October. Air plants, more properly known as tillandsia, are fascinating because, aside from also looking cool, they have no roots and require infrequent waterings; thus, as the name indicates, they essentially survive off of the air.

Spiky plants. I would like to introduce you to the newest members of my plant fam (yes, plants are people, too). Aloe vera plants not only look cool, but also serve a very practical purpose in that they have medicinal properties. Now I’m just awaiting a good, old-fashioned sunburn…in October. Moreover, air plants, more properly known as tillandsia, are fascinating because, aside from being awesome-looking, they have no roots and require infrequent waterings; thus, as the name indicates, they essentially survive off of the air. I simply placed mine onto the sand of my dry terrarium, and I must say, it made for a lovely addition to my dainty desert. Check out my dry terrarium how-to here.

Officially being a CSA member. I've had an interest in investing in a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) share for a while now, but I finally took the plunge. What ultimately gave me the push was when a friend and her husband graciously gifted me one of their shares while they were away over the summer. It was everything I thought it would be and more. Unfortunately, I tend to stick to the same old fruits and veggies when I hit up the produce section at Whole Foods. As such, I love the idea of being forced to incorporate a variety of fresh produce into my diet, as each haul is completely different from the next. I also love the idea of supporting local farms. There are several organizations that offer CSA shares in Philadelphia, but I ultimately went with Greensgrow Farms because they have an amazing reputation and offer winter shares. Sign-ups for winter shares are still underway. If you're interested, you can find more info here. My roomie, Domenica, and I are going to split a share, and we're super excited for the first pickup on December 6th!

Becoming a CSA member. I’ve had an interest in investing in a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) share for a while now, but I finally took the plunge about a week ago. What ultimately gave me the push was when a friend and her husband graciously gifted me one of their bi-weekly hauls while they were away over the summer. It was everything I thought it would be and more. Unfortunately, I tend to stick to the same old fruits and veggies when I hit up the produce section at Whole Foods. As such, I love the idea of being forced to incorporate a variety of fresh produce into my diet, as each haul is completely different from the next. I also love the idea of supporting local farms. There are several organizations that offer CSA shares in Philadelphia, but I ultimately went with Greensgrow Farms because they have an amazing reputation and offer winter shares in addition to summer shares. Sign-ups for winter shares are still underway. If you’re interested in becoming a member yourself, you can find more info here. My roomie, Domenica, and I are going to split the share, and we’re super excited for the first pickup on December 6th!

It's a 10 Miracle Leave-In plus Keratin. This stuff really and truly is the perfect 10 in the realm of hair products. My mane is wavy and unruly; the strands are thin but there are lots of them, meaning that it becomes easily tangled and therefore extremely difficult to brush - especially when fresh out of the shower. However, thanks to this product, I no longer dread brushing my hair, as it now takes me about 5 minutes to brush rather than upwards of 15 (no joke). Additionally, the keratin reduces frizz and significantly reduces the time I spend blow drying. I was reluctant to try it out for a while given its price tag, but it is totally worth the splurge and then some. Plus, a little goes a long way.

It’s a 10 Miracle Leave-In plus Keratin. This stuff really and truly is the perfect 10 in the realm of hair products. My mane is wavy and unruly; the strands are thin but there are lots of them, meaning that it becomes easily tangled and therefore extremely difficult to brush, especially when fresh out of the shower. However, thanks to this product, I no longer dread brushing my hair, as it now takes me about five minutes to brush rather than upwards of fifteen (no joke). Additionally, the keratin reduces frizz and significantly reduces the time I spend blow-drying. I was reluctant to try it out for quite some time given its pricetag, but it is totally worth the splurge and then some. Plus, a little goes a long way.

Fall candles. I recently made a batch of pumpkin-soufflé-scented soy candles and they smell divine. If you're interested in making your own, check out my how-to here. I used pint-sized mason jars and spruced them up with bakers' twine, wrapping paper, and a friendly message - "happy fall :)" - stamped in metallic ink.

Fall candles. I recently made a batch of pumpkin-soufflé-scented soy candles and they smell divine. If you’re interested in making your own, check out my tutorial here. I used pint-sized mason jars and spruced them up with bakers’ twine, wrapping paper, and a friendly message – “happy fall :)” – stamped in metallic ink.