Winter Essentials (Face)

I’ve been fortunate to not have acne ever. Female friends have given me a side-eye anytime this is brought up but I have to say it’s just good genes and a little work. Since I’ve been living in Seattle, I’ve had to create a routine which means effort. I’d like to share with you the staples as well as a new product I’ve been using and actually have on my face as I start this post.

As we know the main rule of thumb is cleanse, tone and moisturize. I’ll take you through the products I use for each.


I used to use the Simple Facial Wash all of the time for the last couple of months but I received a sample of the DDF Brightening Cleanser in a Birchbox and when I tried it I was in love! I took the sample home with me at the end of September and I was there for 12 days and used it twice a day and only half of the bottle was gone! It is pretty pricey but I found a size that could probably last over 3 months for a good price in Marshall’s and I’ve made it my morning facial wash and now the Simple is for night time only. I will say that the DDF tends to dry out your face a bit but it doesn’t bother me because of the awesome toner I use. Simple is a product from the UK but early in the Summer my supermarket started carrying it so I gave it a try and was very pleased as well.


I think I started using this toner from last year or even 2010 but I refuse to try another. It is the Vitamin E Hydrating Toner by The Body Shop. I love this toner because it is very hydrating. Even during the Winter when I’ve rushed out the house without putting on any moisturizer but managed to wipe my face with this, it didn’t dry out! When I saw this I was sold. Obviously you shouldn’t go without moisturizing but on the day this happened I knew I was in good hands and didn’t look like a ghost. Any season, any weather, this moisturizes and hydrates and one bottle lasts about 4.5 months. You don’t have to use a lot of it.


I use so many moisturizers on my face it’s ridiculous but I will share with you my staples because it’s easier. During the Summer, before I moisturize, I use Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Liquid Daily Sunblock SPF 70 and I find this also helps to mattify my face once I put on the moisturizer. During the winter, I do not put this on because it is so dry I don’t want to look like the walking dead. So I only use a peas-size or less amount of Simple Kind To Skin Hydrating Light Moisturizer. I’m yet to use this through a full winter but so far it’s been good. At night, I break out the good ole Vaseline jar. Yes! Vaseline!! I got this from my mother who was born and raised in England (so she knows about Winter skin) and still uses it daily in Barbados. Nightime is when your skin has a chance to rejuvenate so I tend to apply a thin (or thick depending on how I feel) layer of this when I’m ready to go to bed. In the morning, my face is smooth and hydrated and not oily.


My bedtime favorite and companion is the Eos Smooth Sphere Lip Balm in Sweet Mint and I use Vaseline to repair very chapped lips. What I like about Eos the most, is the shape and I can apply it to both of my lips at the same time and not just the bottom then rub for the top! It’s fun and hydrating and doesn’t cause any build-up. I feel lost at night when I don’t use it, unless I’m using Vaseline :D. During the day however, I use this at the start and then I have others that I may use as a base under whatever lip gloss or lipstick I’m wearing.

Other Essentials

I am so excited to share this next product. I recently found it in Rite Aid and I had to give it a try. I never used a mud mask before and I wanted to try something different on my skin. The Deep Down Detox Ultra Cleansing Mud Mask by Formula 10.0.6 is amazing  and cheap (US$5.99!!)! I tried facial wipes from this brand and I was very happy with them so I figured I would be ok trying a new product from them, but I didn’t expect to be this blown away. After my first use, my skin felt extremely soft and looked radiant. I washed off the mask and used the toner and vaseline and in the morning I felt like a new person. That was a few days ago and I used it again tonight and the same result. I may just have to stock up on this product.

Freeman Silk a Peel Cucumber Melon Peel-off Facial Masque is another favorite. I use this one to get any blackheads and just dirt in general from around my nose especially. I do use it on my whole face but it’s main focus is my nose.

Winter can be very tough on your skin so always remember to not go overboard when you treat it and be gentle. More than anything, make sure you have appropriate moisturizers for wherever you are. I mentioned face in the title because my body has a routine of it’s own as well which I’ll consider posting sometime in the future. Hope you enjoyed this post!


*Images taken from product websites and

Cabin Fever

This week the Northwest experienced a winter storm. For the 3 years that I’ve been here, I’ve experience the maximum of 1 week of snow for two years during the winter season. With that said, snow is something that hardly happens in this area and people are generally clueless as to how to deal with it. I personally don’t like the cold and even more so snow. I’m from the Tropics – I wasn’t made for this. Even though the snow can be very pretty, it’s not my thing.

I was to order groceries via Amazon Fresh but for some reason I kept putting it off and then when I finally did, they weren’t delivering Wednesday or Thursday because of the storm (snow) and my order was due for delivery Friday (I ordered Monday night) and then it got pushed from the pre-dawn slot to early morning then to Saturday morning so I cancelled it. We had ventured out Monday and my husband did ask if I wanted to go to the supermarket but I said no as I was ordering but that was the worst decision ever. I mean we had food but just not enough especially since we were home all the time. The first day of the heavy snow (Wednesday), my husband and I went to outside to embrace this white icy powder halting all activity and to get lunch. That in itself was lots of fun. We walked to a little strip mall and got Panera Bread and I got a new jacket as the zip for the hood on mine was broken and that jacket wasn’t thick enough to keep me warm in the cold. Here are some pics from Day 1 (Wednesday) and the last pic is some broccoli cheddar soup from Panera Bread.

Thursday I was definitely ready to get out of the house AND we were definitely in need of groceries. Seeing that my husband was working from home, I had to wait until his work day was done and then we went to the supermarket. We hadn’t driven the car since Monday and the roads had this thick layer of snow that had an icy top layer. We drove to the supermarket around the corner at 10mph just to be careful. Thankfully it took less than 20mins :). We did a huge shop and it was quite interesting thinking about getting everything inside when we had at least 3 to 4 inches of snow on our steps, and the hand rails had an inch that was hard and icy but broke off if you pressed tooo hard. I took it easy and somehow made it upstairs. Day 2 (Thursday – sorry for the pics, they were taken in the car and I wasn’t opening the window to get a better shot):

Yes, I still had that up but it’s down now, the last of my Christmas decorations 😛

With a fully stocked fridge, I made soup today. MMmMmMmMmM soup! It had: lamb, beef, potato, sweet potato, carrots, squash, pumpkin, split peas, barley, onion, thyme, garlic and seasonings. I also did dumplings (not like steamed dumplings you get at a chinese restaurant), ‘Bajan’ dumplings that we add to soup, basically spiced flour balls (I hope I don’t get attacked for that description but it’s the simplest way to describe it). I make it with flour, baking powder, nutmeg, all spice and sugar. Then add water to make it a little pasty and drop it in balls in the pot of soup and let them cook. My tummy was very happy! Then we went to the mall later. The snow has started melting and I can hear chunks of it dropping on my roof and outside. I was to start back the gym this week and I had an appointment for the hairdresser, luckily I’ll get to the hairdresser tomorrow or Sunday but gym will definitely be next week. I have gotten a little chunky over the season lol. So long 2 pack! Right back to the mall… I bought purple jeans!! I’m so happy with them! I will definitely be rocking them this Spring :). I may just go back and get another pair in the light blue seeing I have teal already. Here are pics from today and I hope you enjoyed my ramble of a post :D.


“Fall” On me

I know I’ve been absent for a while and I had to deal with some stuff so I had to put blogging on hold. Plus, I don’t want to adopt the attitude of writing just for the sake of it if I’m not feeling somewhat 100%. I’ve been at 65% this week and I was just waiting to get a little higher. The sun made an appearance today and that has helped somewhat as we have been truly been experiencing Fall with all it’s rain and chill glory. As I type, I’m in socks, jeans, a thermal tee and a nice thick robe over that to make sure I feel warm and cozy. I HATE to feel cold – I am from the Caribbean, enough said.

Even though I haven’t been able to workout this week, I had to get out of the house so I’d spent my time looking for a few fall/winter must-haves that I realized were necessary after I switched up my closet. I finally got a pair of casual wedge booties. That was a very hard task as my ankles are quite small and I HATE looking like I have the boniest ankles and they’re swimming in my boots – because other people do it and are fine with it doesn’t mean I have to as well. I was searching since the end of August.  I don’t like wearing my mid calf flats all the time and after all I’m still trying to build the average Fall/Winter must haves since I’m still relatively new to this whole thing.

I was also looking for a short coat as I only have one to my mid thigh and 3 pleather jackets (I ain’t foolin’ myself or anyone else and they don’t keep me that warm when it gets colder anyway). So I decided to just get something that I can wear when I don’t need all of the coverage my other coat gives me. And my petite-ish frame makes this another “fun” task as arms can be pretty long or I can’t find my size in the one coat I love. I’ve also been trying to stock up on a few more sweaters as I just wanted a few to fit into the little change my wardrobe has made fashion wise. I’ll probably buy them periodically throughout winter but for now I think I’m pretty satisfied with what I have. It probably sounds like I’ve been doing quite a bit of shopping and I won’t lie, I kinda have, but it’s rather frustrating when you have to spend so much time looking for things when you don’t fit the average size – it has been bittersweet.

Gym is next week  and would you believe I missed it? I really wanted to get in there but that isn’t the best idea right now. I think I’ll just dive into it again next week but hopefully over the weekend I’ll be able to just sneak in for a minute or two and feel refreshed.

In light of the passing of Steve Jobs and my reflective nature these last few days/weeks, I’ll like to end with this quote.

You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something — your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. This approach has never let me down, and it has made all the difference in my life. – Steve Jobs