Favorite Anti Aging Products

While I like to think that I approach birthday’s with grace and dignity, I will admit that there’s always a zing when you realize one is coming up.

Usually it’s less denial of the impending milestone, and more a desire to meet the date with my best face forward. And as I’ve gotten older, that last statement has gotten increasingly literal.

In a culture obsessed with youth, I’ve always hoped that I would approach aging with a more laissez-faire French attitude. Waving away the idea of wrinkles with a graceful, manicured hand as I drink a gorgeous glass of red wine in a chic, impeccably tailed outfit.

What? A girl can dream can’t she?

But the truth is that the French ADORE beauty products. They may not go for surgeries and treatments and procedures the same way that Americans do, but they all make good use of the local chemist’s beauty counter.

So, with my inner French girl firmly jockeying for control, here are my favorite anti aging products to date. Some I’ve used for years while others are new to my beauty shelf.

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Algenist GENIUS Liquid Collagen – If you have read much about your skin as you age, you know that the main cause of wrinkles is the skin losing its elasticity and producing less collagen naturally. Algenist Genius is a vegan collagen serum that delivers the goods. I felt tightening and there was a brightness to my skin.

Caudalie聽Resveratrol Lift Face Lifting Soft Cream – While this may not be the “face lift in a bottle” we all wish we could find, it is an effective little gem. Ultra moisturizing, it gives your skin a plumping boost without overwhelming your face.

The Beauty Chef聽COLLAGEN Inner Beauty Boost – In case putting collagen on your face topically isn’t enough, you can try ingesting it. This Beauty Chef collagen liquid is聽cruelty-free, vegan, and free of gluten, refined sugar, and silicone. It’s also, surprisingly, delicious! 馃檪

Shiseido聽Benefiance Pure Retinol Intensive Revitalizing Face Mask – I hate to play favorites… But I have to say that this Shiseido Retinol Mask is one of the best products I’ve ever used. I love trying new brands and goodies, but I always come back to this one. It makes a visible difference in just one use.

Caudalie聽Vine[Activ] Glow Activating Anti-Wrinkle Serum – This is a super lightweight serum that packs a punch. It feels great going on, absorbs quickly, and gives your skin a freshness and glow that you’ll love.

BIOSSANCE Squalane + Peptide Eye Gel – I switched over from eye creams to eye gels during 2017 and haven’t looked back. I love, love, loved this one. Almost weightless going on, but you could see a difference in a few weeks of use.

Peter Thomas Roth Water Drench Hyaluronic Cloud Hydra-Gel Eye Patches – I adore a good eye mask and this little gem is one to keep in your medicine cabinet. It’s great after a long day, before you do your makeup to go out at night. Just pop the eye masks on and it’ll help reduce dryness which makes you look fatigued.

Karuna Skin Reviving Duo -This two part mask allows you to target a problem area while simultaneously applying an all-over mask to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. I’ve had great success with Karuna {I adore their Karma Kit + Face Mask Set}, but this anti-aging mask was my favorite.

Fresh Vitamin Nectar Vibrancy-Boosting Face Mask – Fair warning – This mask looks gross. It’s a little clumpy, but actually smells great. And, it works. You’ll get some glow and some much needed brightness.

And, as much as I live for my beauty products, I’m the first to admit that sleep, water, and a healthy diet are always going to be your top line of defense in the aging process!

What anti aging products are YOU loving? Anything I need to try?

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Best Purchases & Products from 2017

While I wouldn’t necessarily categorize myself as a heavy-duty shopper, I definitely make a number of purchases a month if you’re including everything from clothing and accessories to protein powders and bars. I thought it would be fun to go through my purchases from 2017 to see how I was spending my money and to help me determine what products were the best in my opinion.

Here’s a breakdown of a few of the categories that most of my purchases fall into and my absolute favorites:


I used to LOVE buying jewelry but when I looked back at 2017 I realize I didn’t buy a single piece. Why? I think that as I transitioned out of costume jewelry into investment pieces and “keep forever” jewelry, I stopped needing to buy new pieces. I wore the same necklace, bracelet, and two rings probably 90% of the year.

I did, however, buy some clothes. And shoes.

This year I traded in my Saucony Guide 9‘s for a pair of Brooks Ghost 10‘s. I’m a longtime fan of Brooks so when I saw how well rated and ranked the Ghosts were, I decided to take the plunge. So far so good!

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As I talked about in this blog post, I have tried to avoid “fast fashion” and like to spend my money on vintage and consignment websites like The Real Real or buying NWT (new with tags) items on Poshmark. That trend continued this year and I would say that these are my absolute best buys from 2017:

  • My #1 most used item of 2017 was, without a doubt, my Gucci Soho Chain Crossbody Bag. I love, love, love聽this baby. I got it black from聽The Real Real聽and used it for both day and night all year-long. AND聽it’s the perfect bag for traveling, just pop it into your suitcase for daytrips and evenings.
  • Speaking of traveling, this Tibi Tunic became my go-to travel top. I always fly in knit pants and a tunic, and loved how thick and comfortable this Tibi version has been. Plus the fabric holds up great being worn or folded.
  • And the most versatile piece award goes to this A.L.C. midi dress. It’s flattering and can be worn in super Summery ways or layered for a Fall-appropriate style.

Beauty & Makeup:

I tried a number of new brands and products this year – From masks to聽serums to facial toners. So what were my top picks?

Beauty Skin Care Skincare San Francisco Bay Area Fashion Food Fitness Lifestyle Blogger Products

Best Eyeliner – After going back and forth with various liners, I’ve gone back to my first love, Kat Von D’s tattoo liner. Liquid eyeliner is rarely effortless, but this one is.

Best SerumCaudalie Vine[Activ] Glow Activating Anti-Wrinkle Serum. This one smells amazing and goes on feeling like silk.

Best Eye Gel – I switched from eye cream to gel this year and LOVED the Biossance Squalane + Peptide Eye Gel. Extra bonus? The bottle lasted a long, long time.

Best Mask – This is a loaded question for me since I live for masks. But after reviewing the sheet and face masks that I tried out, I think I narrowed it down to Boscia Sake Brightening Hydrogel Mask and Kiehl’s Since 1851 Rare Earth Deep Pore Cleansing Mask.

I like to go onto the Sephora website and sort by my concerns and what junk I don’t want in my products, and then play around.聽 馃檪

What were YOUR best purchases of 2017? Anything I need to try?

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Eat This Not That | Protein Rich Swaps

Welcome back to another edition of Eat This Not That! After tackling some basic healthy food swaps, I also shared my go-to suggestions for cleaning up your breakfast habits. Today we’re back to talk about how you can make some quick and easy changes to your meals that will help increase your protein intake on a day-to-day basis.


Swap cereal for gluten-free oats. If you’re a cereal devotee, it’s time to trade in your sugary processed flakes and puffs for some hearty, filling oats. Need some sweetness? Add some powdered peanut butter, fruit, and/or no-sugar added yogurt of your choice.

If you’re a sugar fiend in the morning – Try trading your juice and/or pastry for a smoothie instead. Fresh fruit, almond milk, and protein powder – Et voila.


Swap out chips or crackers for a fried fruit and nut mix. You can get a dose of salt, but with the added benefit of healthy fats and protein. Just watch your portion size, those babies add up.

A protein-rich midday snack will tide you over much better than sugar or empty carbs. Instead of a sugary granola bar, try a healthier option like Vega Sport Bars or Clif Builders Bars. Check out some of my other favorites here – Best Vegan Protein Bars.

Eat This Not That Protein Rich Foods Vegan Vegetarian Gluten-Free Paleo San Francisco Bay Area Blogger


Swap a giant snooze-inducing sandwich for a salad overflowing with veggies. You can still get lean protein, fiber,聽and healthy fats, just watch your salad dressing choice to avoid unnecessary sodium, sugar, and fat. Always read the labels on your salad dressing!

Not in the mood for a salad? Try a decontructed burrito or fajita bowl.


Try trading in the white or brown rice, or couscous in your dinner menu for organic white, red, or black quinoa. And if you’re in the mood for pasta, you can swap out traditional refined wheat pasta for a spinach, quinoa, or brown rice variety.


If you love to bake, like I do, you can swap out your bleached flour for almond meal or cashew flour. It’s delicious and super healthy, I promise that you’ll love it. And the expert level swap for baking? Chickpea flour! Like these healthy peanut butter blondies.

Do YOU have a favorite swapping hack? Share below!

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Detox Organics | Supplement Real Talk

I have a love-hate relationship with supplements. On one hand, it’s touted as a great way to round-out your diet and ensure you’re getting all the necessary micronutrients your diet might be missing. On the other hand, research seems to change daily on their value, potency, and benefits.

As a result, I try to get all my vitamins and minerals from my diet rather than supplements. The one exception? Whole food supplements. There are some options out there that will provide you with a supplement form of a number of whole foods, superfoods, and spices or herbs.

Enter a current favorite – Detox Organics.

Detox Organics Supplements Vegan Gluten-Free Paleo Vegetarian San Francisco Bay Area Fashion Food Fitness Lifestyle Blogger

This is a serious powerhouse of nutrients, vitamins, and minerals. And bonus? It’s DELICIOUS.

As I talked about in my DAO Labs post – Reading ingredients is incredibly important when it comes to supplements. Each scoop contains 10 lbs of veggies, fruit, herbs, and plants. So what’s in the mix?

  • To help detox & cleanse – Wheat Grass, barley grass, alfalfa, chlorella, horseradish tree leaf, and peppermint
  • To promote alkalizing & energy – Spinach, spirulina, kale, broccoli, rockweed, coconut water, and kelp
  • To provide digestive support – Carrot root, beet root, ginger, dandelion root, lemon balm, fennel seed, turmeric, pineapple, acai, aloe vera, cayenne, and goji

And those are all ORGANIC.

Needless to say, I was excited to give this a try.

Will a supplement overcome an unhealthy diet? No. Will it give you all the vitamins, minerals, and nutrients your body needs on a daily basis? Nope. But the right supplement can do just that, supplement a healthy lifestyle by rounding out your nutritional intake. I use something like Detox Organics to ensure that I’m hitting my micronutrients each day, without having to try to eat each of the ingredients in the above lists.

That’s why I’m so thrilled to announce that I’ve joined the Detox Organics team as an ambassador! That means that I’ll be able to offer all of you a discount!

Head over to the Detox Organics website and you’ll get 15% off your order with the code mclv18.

I hope that you love this product as much as I do! Stay tuned for one of my new favorite recipes. 馃檪

Note: You should discuss your dietary and supplement needs with a doctor, naturopath, or nutritionist. Your diet, genetics, levels of activity, and allergies or intolerances can all impact your body’s absorption rates and you may require something different.

Have YOU tried a whole food supplement before? Would you?

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Skin Care Junkie | Herstyler Hair Styling Products

Taking care of my skin and my hair as I get older is a big priority for me – I try to eat well and stay hydrated, and I use products that will help protect and nourish me. And that’s where brands like Herstyler come in – They offer high quality products and tools that work well and keep your strands safe. And bonus? They’re聽super reasonably priced!

I tried out their聽Heat Protective Straightening Cream and the SuperStyler Flatiron聽– And loved the results.

HerStyler Hair Styling Products Hair Beauty San Francisco Bay Area Fashion Food Fitness Lifestyle Blogger

Straightening Cream – I’ve been using this whenever I blow dry or use heating tools on my hair. It keeps my hair looking聽so much healthier than anything I’ve been using lately. It’s visibly smoothing and my hair looks great after using a straightener instead of looking weary.

Flatiron – This is a great little flatiron, it heats up quickly, and works well. Combined with the straightening cream, I’ve found that my hair styling routine is much faster and more effective. Perfect for quickly getting myself ready for an evening out after a long day at the office.

Next up, I want to try the Styling Spray and Shampoo!

Do YOU have a hair styling routine?

Note: This post was sponsored by Herstyler, however all opinions are my own.

Are you a big fan of skin care and beauty products? Check out some of my other Skin Care Junkie posts: Alaska Glacial Mud Mask, Sibu Sea Berry Seed Oil, Musely Hydrogel Eye Mask, Raw Beauty & Coconut Oil, Natural Beauty & Hair Products, Mix Rx Apothecary聽Collection, Balanced Guru Facial Toner, and FRE Skin Care.

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