As humans, I think we are all (to some extent) creatures of habit.
Although we fight it, we get stuck in our same hum-drum routines and habits then battle hard to shake it up only if and when required. While I think this statement applies to our important relationships, careers and health, I also think it trickles down through fashion, beauty and personal style.
My challenge for you is to try 10 new things in 2016 that are out of your comfort zone. I’m not saying to go throw yourself out of a plane or anything — unless you’re into that sort of thing. What I’m saying is to start incorporating small changes into your daily life that in the moment don’t appear too significant or overwhelming, but at the conclusion of 365 days can make an unexpected impact.
Here are my 10 new things to try in 2016!
1. A new skincare regimen
I’m a big believer of if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. However as I continue to age gracefully, I realize that perhaps it may not be broken NOW, but if I don’t change things up occasionally, it may very well be broken LATER.
Technically, I can probably check this 2016 “to-do” off my list. About a week ago I started using a new roundup of products that I wanted to share with you because I am really, really happy with the results… so far!
My new regime is actually 2-fold and involves only 4 products. For a few months I’ve been hearing a lot of beauty buzz about a skincare and makeup line called SUNDAY RILEY. I finally decided to do some research when I was running out of all of my go-to products (iS CLINICAL ACTIVE SERUM, CELLEX-C ADVANCED C SERUM, DR. JART+ BLACK LABEL DETOX BEAUTY BALM) and loved all of the positive reviews I was reading about the innovative skincare brand that seamlessly blends natural botanicals with modern biotechnology to create quick acting and effective products. I focused on my specific skin needs (hydration, anti-aging, radiance) and decided that the following products would be the perfect fit:
• LUNA SLEEPING NIGHT OIL — I’ve been using this product nightly and I won’t lie, the first time I took the dropper to my hand I was shocked at the deep marine blue substance that came out. The crazy color is due to one of the botanical ingredients, Blue Tanzy which is said to have healing anti-inflammatory properties and heals damaged skin. The trans-retinol Ester is the power behind the wrinkle-fighting properties of the product. Together they work magic. Once massaged into the skin, the blue color disappears and the oil quickly soaks in without a greasy mess left behind. I would say the scent is definitely floral — similar to chamomile (which is also included in the ingredient list!). I’ve been applying this oil under Good Genes which we’ll talk about next…
• GOOD GENES — Sunday Riley refers to this product as a “Corrective-Treatment,” but you can consider it a miracle serum in a bottle. After applying Luna, I use 2 small pumps of this serum-like lotion and within minutes my skin is glowing. Like literally glowing. Like I should be going out for fancy cocktails and not to bed with my gorgeous glowing skin. Two small pumps is all it takes to reduce puffiness, fill in small lines and generally give my skin an aura that’s Kim Kardashian selfie worthy (without pounds of makeup and fancy lighting).
• BIONIC — This is Sunday Riley’s multi-vitamin repair cream. I’ve been using it each morning on a clean face and it’s essentially the boosted equivalent of a light moisturizer with a really pretty candy-esque smell. My daughter is obsessed with the smell and keeps asking to sniff my face. At this point (less than two weeks in) I can’t say I look miraculously younger, but my skin looks pretty flawless!
• GIORGIO ARMANI LUMINESSENCE CC COLOR CONTROL BRIGHT MOISTURIZER (SPF 35) — The selling point on this CC cream/tinted moisturizer combo was the SPF 35… and all of the amazing online reviews. Even with the added sun protection, the product went on really light and smooth. The finish was definitely not matte, yet not as dewy as other BB cream or tinted moisturizer products I’ve used in the past. The best part of this product was the long lasting coverage that just gave my winter skin a sheer veil of color and a moisture boost it craves this time of year (I use color #2 for those curious). While this is not the cheapest tinted moisturizer out there, it’s definitely won the top spot on my list.
2. Heels during the day
One of the things I miss the most about Wall Street (surprisingly, I still do miss working in finance sometimes!) is that my job required a business formal wardrobe and heels to match. Granted, I don’t miss the stuffy suits, but I do miss my heels. I still wear heels on nights out and for occasional business meetings and events, but I have a closet full of fabulous shoes that are just begging to be worn.
Lately, I’ve been gravitating more to my “lower” heeled pumps and booties because at this point in my life comfort trumps everything. Fortunately, with comfort you don’t have to sacrifice style. Here are some of my favorite mid-heel options that I can run around in all day:
I’ve never liked yoga. This year I hope to change that. Yoga has numerous mental and physical health benefits that can’t be denied. There must be something to it if people have been actively practicing yoga for hundreds of years — and some just happen to be supermodels! I also think that yoga would be a good compliment to my generally high-intensity cardio routine and occasional mid-to-high anxiety mental state.
Cue my AMAZON PRIME membership and streaming yoga videos in the privacy of my bedroom. I’ve been attempting to integrate a 30-45 min yoga practice into my schedule 1-3x a week. So far, so good… we’ll see how I feel in 11 more months.
The only thing I am sure of now, is that new workout clothes definitely help me in the motivational department! I’ve been trolling the LULULEMON website and the WE MADE TOO MUCH category in particular.
You can find some great steals on there, like the most recent ones below:
4. Eat more veggies
I have nothing against vegetables, honestly… I just get lazy and when pressed for time or in a pinch, tend to veer towards less nutritional options. I recently started following natural food chef ADAM KENWORTHY on Instagram (He’s RHONY Carol Radziwill’s cute boyfriend!). His food images are always so beautiful — truly artistic masterpieces and predominately vegan and/or vegetarian to boot! Everytime I see one of his posts I’m inspired to add more color and veggies into my diet. So here I am, with my new VEGGETTI SPIRALIZER in hand.
5. Learn something new
With everything going on in adult lives, sometimes it’s hard to set aside time to keep learning. Whether you’re looking to learn a new language, a new recipe, a new sport or some HTML coding (as in my own case), it’s never too late to make your education an ongoing priority. One of the keys to success in accomplishing this goal is to buddy up and find a friend or loved one to take on the challenge with you. Two brains are better then one, right?
6. Get fitted for a bra
Our undergarments definitely don’t get enough respect in my opinion. The wrong size or cut can leave you uncomfortable and appearing pounds heavier. So what’s a girl to do about her “girls?”
Most department stores and specialty retailers (VICTORIA’S SECRET, SOMA, etc.) offer free professional fittings which takes a total of 5 minutes and may leave you looking like a leaner, perkier version of yourself. I’m guilty of not having one for at least 8 years. It’s definitely time.
To tide me over, I’ve been swooning over all of the gorgeous bralettes that I’ve been seeing. They’re the perfect end-of-day or weekend undergarment that’s slightly less constricting than a regular bra, but just as flattering.
7. Pick up the phone
Between sitting in front of screens all day and general hectic schedules, calling our friends and family and actually speaking to them over the line has gone by the wayside thanks to texts, emails and the occasional bi-annual night out. This year, I truly want to make a concerted effort to hear my friends’ voices and share the highs and lows in a much more personal way than Facebook.
On a side note, I’ve been loving my iPhone 6s. If you haven’t upgraded to one yet, it’s a game changer. For the first time ever, SIRI can actually understand my voice. The 12 megapixel camera is also the bomb — a little known fact: most of my INSTAGRAM photos are taken via iPhone!
8. Get dressed up
After a virtual marathon of nonstop weddings circa 2006-2009, my hubby and I have had little opportunity to really go all out black-tie style. I currently have a guest room closet full of evening dresses that are all dressed up with no place to go. Even more frustrating are all of the beautiful gowns I keep seeing online that I’d love to wear if given the opportunity. 2016 is about creating opportunities! So one of my “things to try” is to schedule a black tie date night for us… dinner, dancing, the whole nine yards.
These are just a few of the dresses I’d love to wear:
9. Keep a daily gratitude diary
My favorite Christmas present has to be my new 2016 DAY DESIGNER DAILY AGENDA. It’s a slightly larger version of the typical planner I’ve carried, but it includes so many helpful and unique features that make me love it even more. One of the best aspects of the daily pages is a small box at the bottom that is called: Daily Gratitude.
As someone who can be overly sarcastic and pessimistic at times (it’s definitely the New Yorker in me coming out!), it’s nice to refocus on all of the things that I have to be grateful for at the end of the day. While they are generally small (My kids ate a new food! I made a new business connection! My website surpassed X number of views!), they make me smile when I go back and review the previous week’s accomplishments and get reminded of all of the fantastic things that have happened.
10. Host a soirée
For the past few months I’ve been inspired to host a fun cocktail party at our house for no reason. Good drinks, good, fun, good friends all under one roof for no special occasion. Hosting a party doesn’t have to be too stressful or labor intensive with the right tools — a well stocked BAR CART, an assortment of easy cocktail appetizers (DEAN & DELUCA offer amazing gourmet options delivered right to your door!) and good music, of course. Obviously, a game like CARDS AGAINST HUMANITY kicks all of the inappropriate fun up to a rated R notch.
Here are a few more party essentials for the hostess with the most-ess!
What’s on your list of new things to try in 2016?