WHAT IS SQUALANE?

03/31/2017

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What is squalane? Put simply, the power-packed ingredient is an oil that has long been featured in luxury skincare and Korean beauty products for its moisturizing and anti-aging effects. The lightweight lipid helps to shield against moisture loss and provide a barrier from environmental toxins. Luckily, our bodies already produce a version of squalane. However, research shows that the amount we create begins to decline over time, usually starting around the age of 30. Utilizing an oil with squalane in it can help combat this loss.

Squalane should not be confused, however, with squalene, which is the non-hydorgenated form of shark liver oil. Luckily, squalane can be derived from plants, specifically made from sugarcane (because we all like the sharks!) So, you can receive the same fast-absorbing, moisturizing effects in an all-natural, non-toxic, and cruelty-free product.

This year, I’ll be turning 38. And while certain routines have always been important to me, the older I get the more important self-care and wellness become—for my body, mind, and spirit. Being an Editor at Mother, I’m fortunate enough to test-drive a number of different products, and I’m constantly adding and eliminating various brands to and from my routine. Over the years, however, I’ve learned the importance of finding the products that not only work, but that are also good for my skin. These hero products become mainstays that I permanently keep on my bathroom shelf and use religiously, day and night.

That said, I’ve been a fan of Biossance for years. Each of the brand’s products is full of plant-based squalane derived from sugarcane and used to provide additional hydration to the skin. Biossance’s range offers an all-natural, non-toxic squalane that you can add to your routine for a supple, natural glow. I was sent samples of the 100% Squalane Oil and the new Squalane + Vitamic C Rose Oil, and I truly love them. I slather the stuff on before bed and wake up with the softest skin!

Beauty tip: add a couple of drops of the oil into your foundation, mix in the palm of your hand and apply with your fingertips. It will give you a dewy, non-cakey, natural looking finish. It has literally changed the way makeup looks on my skin and leaves me looking fresh-faced all day long.

423If you’re looking for added hydration in your daily routine or feel your skin could use a little love, Biossance is offering free samples of their 100% Squalane Oil and Squalane + Vitamin C Rose Oil. All you have to do is pay $4 for shipping and handling. Trust me, your skin will thank you! For more information on the power-packed ingredient or on the Biossance brand, visit the website.

This post is in partnership with Biossance.

TEN THINGS

03/31/2017

TENTHINGSHappy Friday! My week has been filled with home renovations and getting prepped for an upcoming Mother event in L.A. I leave tomorrow, and am trying to finish a few things up around the house before I take off. Living in your home while completing a remodel with four kids around is not something I’d recommend, but we’re pushing through and making the best of it. I hope that your weekend is equal parts relaxing and eventful, and that the warm spring weather finds you, wherever you are. Here are this week’s ten things…

1. I just finished watching The Santa Clarita Diet with Drew Barrymore. It’s hilarious!

2. Is North Carolina finally going to repeal its bathroom bill?

3. I’ll take one of each, please.

4. I’ve been nose-deep in Jon Didion’s new book South and West, since it arrived. Have you read it yet?

5. How beautiful is Soho House in Barcelona?

6. Tànsuǒ recently opened in Nashville. I went to the opening and it is delish! If you’re in the area, you have to check it out!

7. 5 documentaries to change the way you think this spring.

8. Another Game of Thrones season 7 trailer is here!!!

9. New Caron Callahan just landed at Two Son. You may want to snag a pair of Dover Shorts before they’re gone!

10. If you’re craving comfort food, try this recipe!

Photo above via Aegian.

DID YOU/WILL YOU CHANGE YOUR LAST NAME?

03/29/2017

elvisIs name changing becoming a thing of the past? As we move further into the 21st century, fewer women are changing their last name after marriage, and some couples are even creating a new last name by combining parts of their former surnames. Whereas certain women view this new-age trend as a refreshing break from patriarchal tradition, others prefer the unity—or convenience—of a shared last name. Similarly, some women are proud of their heritage, identity, or family name, and therefore want to hold on to it. Regardless, there’s certainly no right or wrong way to do it—all options are rooted in personal values and preference.

I was raised with my mother’s last name, but to this day I go by a hyphenated version of my former husband’s last name (Kicinski) and my current husband’s (McCoy). I still have a close relationship with my ex, so it never seemed odd to me that I kept his last name, which is also shared by my two older kids, Julian and Plum. My little kids, Birdie and Sailor, have their dad’s last name, so a hyphenated version of the two seemed like the best option for me, so we could all share the same name.

So, what are your thoughts? Did you/will you change your last name? Feel free to share below!

Photo above via Getty Images.

ARE YOU A HOMEBODY?

03/09/2017

07_carrie apartment_sex and the city_bedroom_hbo_com“There’s no place like home”… I really couldn’t agree more. We live just outside of the city, in a sort-of hidden area of town that truly feels like a treehouse. I love being at home, and am still loving living here, just as much as I did when we first moved in nearly four years ago.

I work from home the majority of the time, so it’s safe to say that I spend a lot of my time within the comfort and security of my own four walls. And, while I certainly wouldn’t consider myself a hermit, I do prefer the familiarity and ease of being at home with my family. My perfect day would be spent relaxing in bed, with the kids running in and out, reading books and drinking coffee. Even when I’m out to dinner with Aubrey or enjoying the company of close friends at their houses, I always find myself releasing a small sigh, equal parts relief and contentedness, once we pull back into our driveway for the night. I can’t quite put my finger on what it is. Home is my happy place, plain and simple.

I know that there are all kinds of people though—introverts and extroverts, homebodies, and party animals. And, most of the time people fall somewhere in the middle of the spectrum. But, what about you? Do you find that you feel most alive in the space you’ve created and cultivated as your home base, or would you rather reenergize and refuel somewhere else? Would you consider yourself a homebody, too?

Photo above of Carrie Bradshaw’s apartment on Sex And The City via HBO.

QUICK CURRY CHICKEN SALAD

03/06/2017

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My ex-mother-in-law taught me how to make this incredibly easy curry chicken salad over 15 years ago. It’s really good and also a hit with the kids! Since I made bone broth last week, I decided to whip up this dish with the chicken I had left over. I hope you like it!

You will need:

One roasted chicken, you can roast your own or buy one pre-roasted, which I usually do for convenience
Two green granny smith apples
Two celery stalks
Cashews halves
2 heaping spoonfuls of mayo, I use Nayonaise or Just Mayo (my favorite!)
1-2 Tbsp. curry powder, to taste
Salt and pepper, to tase

Roast chicken if not pre-roasted. Remove breasts from whole chicken and cut into bite-size cubes. Chop all remaining ingredients and combine in a large mixing bowl. Stir in mayo and spices, to taste. Tip: Wait to add cashews until immediately before serving to avoid them softening.

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