4 Reasons Why I Get Eyelash Extensions

The first time I heard about eyelash extensions I was in my junior year of high school and we had a foreign exchange student from Norway in my class. Another girl had told her that her lashes were so long and that’s when she told us that she had eyelash extensions. Now, keep in my mind, I lived in a very small town in Minnesota. The way of life out there is extremely different. I had no idea that eyelash extensions were even a thing and I thought that it was a crazy thing to do! Fast forward to April 2018 when I decided to finally give them a try and fell in love! In this post I’ll explain why I decided to try them and why I continue to pay for them.

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Let’s start with a quick background about my eyelashes. I was blessed with very long eyelashes. What I wasn’t blessed with? Curl. They are stick straight and a mile long. When I first started wearing makeup at 13 years old, I had just the basics. After wearing mascara for awhile, I was still frustrated that my eyelashes weren’t curling. I brought it up to my mom and she let me know that we could get an eyelash curler for me. Let me tell you I tried every trick in the book for the eyelash curler. Curling my lashes first, putting mascara on and then curling, repeating that same process twice, heating the curler before curling…..I googled until there was nothing left. Eventually I just accepted that my lashes were doomed and stubborn.

-> 2017. My first experience with false eyelashes was when I did a photo shoot. A friend of mine did my makeup for the shoot and I decided to buy some(yolo right?). She put them on me and I felt like one bad-ass woman. I was unstoppable! Fierce! Needless to say, I got hooked and bought myself more lashes.

-> April 2018. I was talking to one of my friends about eyelash extensions. We both were saying that it seemed really cool but we were too scared to try it. We made a pact that I would try them first and if they looked good then she would get extensions too.

The first appointment was amazing. It was so relaxing and the results after were so worth it! I decided to go with a medium length natural style. They looked so beautiful and I felt much more confident! For once in my life it actually looked like I had eyelashes! Since then I haven’t had them taken off. I go every 3 weeks to get them filled and love them every time.

But what about the pricing!? Here’s what I think is super funny about people’s responses when I tell them how much my lashes are: they literally pay the same amount to have their nails or hair done. Quality acrylic nails can be anywhere from $40-$80 depending on where you go and your design – and those get filled every 2 weeks! Women’s hair stylists have always been expensive. My last stylist increased her price to $90 for a haircut. When you first get the extensions it will be in the $110+ range. Fills vary on the style you’re wanting. Note: Pricing also varies on where you go. These prices are for my lashes. I pay anywhere between $60-$80 for my lash fills depending on which style I go with. Generally I stick with the Volume style which is $70. Why do I pay this much every 3 weeks?

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  1. It looks BOMB. I don’t think I need to elaborate.
  2. It’s convenient. Waking up every day and not having to worry about makeup is amazing. It saves me so much time getting ready in the morning(or if I’m running late!)
  3. It saves me money. Yes, you read that correctly! Since getting lash extensions, I have greatly decreased my trips to makeup stores. I feel confident leaving my house with zero makeup on so I’m not wearing makeup every day. This also means I’m not having to spend money on makeup remover wipes either!
  4. “Treat yo self!” I don’t spend a lot of money on myself, especially since I’ve become a minimalist. My haircut is around $45 and I go whenever I feel like I need a touch up. I don’t get my nails done anymore because of how damaged they were from gel and acrylics. I very rarely buy any new clothes anymore. The only reason I’ve bought clothes recently is because I lost some weight. Having my lashes done brings me so much joy and confidence! 

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I’ve been really happy in my decision to continue getting eyelash extensions. It’s an expense I don’t mind and budget for every month. I love the convenience of them so much! If you’re interested in getting them, make sure to do your research! You’re dealing with your eyes and want to make sure you’re staying safe and healthy. Word of mouth and Yelp are really great options in deciding where to go.

HELPFUL TIP: When you go for your first set, start with the natural since it’s the cheapest option. When you go for fills you can choose other styles and pay the fill price instead of a new set! 😉

My Benefits of a Weighted Blanket

*This post contains links and product suggestions. I have not been paid for these – this is purely my own experience and review.

 

I heard about weighted blankets a long time ago because a friend of mine had purchased one. She said she absolutely loved it and after that I completely forgot about them until recently. I don’t remember exactly how(probably an online ad) but I started becoming interested in them. I read reviews and posts about them and how life changing they were for some people. I also came across an article that someone wrote about their child who has AD/HD and how beneficial the weighted blanket was for them.

In my post about my mental health, I mentioned that a lot of changes have been happening in my life the last few months. I’ve been switching between a few medications and had a new diagnosis that I was trying to work through. Just recently I had another doctor appointment where they are questioning another diagnosis for me and the potential for another medication switch. Basically there’s still a lot going on for me and my health and I’ve been doing my best to find my coping mechanisms.

And now we get to the weighted blanket! After reading several articles about how they’re very beneficial for people with mental illnesses I was hooked on wanting one. There are many different kinds out there but the one I have is The Calming Comfort Weighted Blanket. From their website, here is how they explain how the blanket works: The Calming Comfort™ Weighted Blanket applies an even amount of pressure over your body to help the production of serotonin and melatonin (the body’s primary sleep hormones), simulating Deep Touch Pressure Stimulation. It feels like a warm hug, immediately sending you into a state of comfort and relaxation.

Knowing this and the information I found from the articles, I was very eager to get one. I have a few mental illnesses and I also have a hard time sleeping. The sleeping part I always struggled with, even as a baby! It always takes me a long time to fall asleep and when I do, I constantly wake up throughout the night.

Okay, fast forward to actually getting the blanket. *This is not an exaggeration* It literally feels like heaven. I immediately snuggled up with it on the couch and having all that weight on me felt so good. Not to mention it’s extremely soft too! My first night sleeping with the blanket was one of the best sleeps I had had in a long time. I woke up feeling refreshed and actually well rested. Now I know you’re probably thinking, ‘Well Kait, how do you REALLY know that it was working?’. One night I went to bed without the blanket. I had it nearby but was just too lazy to grab it. Nothing changed during my day or in my normal routine. I did everything as I normally would have, took the same medications, and had my same bedtime routine. I had also been using the weighted blanket for about a week every night already as well. That night I felt SO distressed! I couldn’t get comfortable and when I finally fell asleep I was awake maybe 30 minutes later. This went on for a few hours. I eventually grabbed my weighted blanket and fell asleep shortly after – and stayed asleep.

Ever since then I have used my blanket every night and the occasional cuddle on the couch. I have been falling asleep faster and staying asleep the entire night. I wake up feeling well rested and comfortable. It’s been very rare that I wake up without anxiety anymore! I highly recommend you give the weighted blanket a try. If you struggle with anxiety, depression, or AD/HD then this blanket is truly a great gift. It’s also helpful for those that have an issue being touched by other people. Some of my friends, myself included, don’t necessarily prefer to be touched when we’re having an anxiety or panic attack. Some don’t like to be touched in general. For them it’s not a great way to get them to calm down; it only amps up their anxiety. This blanket could be an option for them as it will stimulate the pressure stimulation without having to feel another person on them.

Check out their website and find more testimonials about the blanket!

How I Shop Differently as a Minimalist

*This post contains recommendations purely made by myself. I have not been paid or given incentives.

Black Friday and Cyber Monday have come and gone and holiday shopping continues. I have about half of my Christmas gifts purchased and plan on finishing the rest this week.

In one of my posts about my trip to LA, I had mentioned the items I had bought. As I continue minimalism, I’ve noticed so much of a change in my shopping habits.

The other day I was hanging out with my boyfriend and he mentioned some items that he wanted in the future. Every item he rattled off was expensive, hi-tech, and name-branded. With each mention of these items, I found that I had zero connection to the same wants. Perhaps it’s because I’ve become minimalist and have a new way for my life or perhaps it’s because I used to be that person that wanted the expensive, name-brand items.

My first job in California was at a thrift store. We bought and sold clothes that other people brought in. In order for me to become a good buyer for the store I needed to know the brands and the trends. I wanted to be really good at my job so I did my research. I found what people really liked and what these big brands were. It was really different for me especially coming from a small town in Minnesota. I truly believe that this job started my downfall in fashion. Don’t get me wrong – I love fashion. I love posting my outfits and I love helping my friends and family with their styles. But because I was brand obsessed, that became my main focus. I wanted only Michael Kors bags. I wanted True Religion jeans. I wanted cute Brandy Melville clothing. I ended up leaving the thrift store after a few years and started at a new retail store. There was a different policy here – no bags allowed. This is the case for many companies as it helps reduce employee theft. I had a beautiful beige Michael Kors crossbody at the time. It went with everything and it really did give me so much joy. However with this new policy, I soon got tired of having to transfer things from my purse to a clear plastic backpack just so I could go to work. Soon I stopped using my crossbody entirely. This was the start to my end of brand name items. It wasn’t until I left retail that I started to realize I didn’t actually need any of these things. I began my career again in veterinary care where my uniform was scrubs. I had no reason to keep up with fashion trends or worry about putting together different outfits everyday. And because I was wearing scrubs every day, I started to value the outfits I was putting together when I was going out with friends or just running errands.

I continued to shop as I normally would have (minus big brands) and had so many clothes piled up in my closet. It’s still a work in progress, as I constantly change my style, but I am very proud of where I am at today and the new shopping habits I’ve picked up. Here are some things that I’ve learned along the way:

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  • Understanding Brands
    • I told you that I used to be brand obsessed. I felt like it gave me a certain status and anything below these brands were unacceptable. There are only two items out of my whole wardrobe that I have splurged on. That would be my Dooney & Burke small crossbody and wallet. I bought these about a year ago and it was because I decided to treat myself. The purse I had before I used for quite some time and picked it up for $5 at a thrift store. A lot of the times, people think that because it’s a huge name brand and that it’s expensive means it’s great quality. Sometimes that’s not always the case. There’s also the fact to keep in mind that you can get the same item at the same quality for a much cheaper price. I mentioned that I loved True Religion jeans. They were super cute, fit my body type at the time, and also lasted for a really long time. Over time I realized I didn’t want to spend that kind of money on jeans and the fit wasn’t working for my body anymore. Now I get my jeans from American Eagle. They are reasonably priced and they LAST. My oldest pair right now is about 5 years old and you would never know it! The latest pair I bought is already 3 years old and in perfect shape.
  • Needs or Wants
    • This may sound weird but I think I was destined to be a minimalist. Looking back, I had the same fundamentals and values but never knew how to completely discipline myself. It was always when I had my items and stood in the long line for the cash register that I would start contemplating my purchase. The longer I stood there the more I looked at my item(s) and realized that it wasn’t worth waiting any longer for. I’d get out of line, place the piece back, and leave the store. I’ve done that several times throughout my adult life and have never regretted that choice. As I’ve gotten older, I’ve put so much thought into every purchase I continue to make. Understanding the needs and wants for yourself are extremely crucial. For example, when fall and winter rolls around, I love seeing all the sweaters on display. I already have several sweaters but seeing new ones in different styles and colors is tempting. I’ve reached a place with myself now where I can appreciate the article of clothing and continue my trip without purchasing it.
  • Understanding Sales
    • Sales are a dark hole that should be avoided when necessary. Stores put the sales there so you buy more than you need because, hey!, it’s on sale and cheap. Some sales however can be extremely beneficial if it’s for something you need. When I go shopping, I generally stay away from the clearance sections. Everything ends up there at some point but you’ll find a lot of outdated items. You’ll also find things, like a shirt, that aren’t your style but because it’s so cheap you’ll buy it anyway. You’ll wear the item once and then it ends up in a corner never to be seen or worn again. The key is to stick with your favorite brands and know when their sales are. In a lot of blog posts about saving money, you’ll find that they’ll tell you to unsubscribe from store’s mailing lists. While I fully support this idea, it’s also not a bad thing to stay on mailing lists for stores you really enjoy. It’s a great way to get coupons and find out about sales going on in store or online. There are a few stores that I still subscribe to and just because I’ve subscribed to them doesn’t mean I’m using every coupon or sale they send to me.
  • Buying in Bulk
    • A majority of my shopping is done online. I hate going to the mall and being in large shopping crowds. If I do have to go to the mall I have to mentally prepare myself days in advance. My main website is Amazon and I do pay for Amazon Prime so I can get my items faster. But let’s say I needed to get a pair of jeans. I usually check the store’s website to see how much I would need to spend for free shipping. After knowing that, I wait to purchase until I need multiple things so I can take advantage of the free shipping and other deals they may have. This saves me money by waiting for things I actually need instead of trying to find something to bump myself up for free shipping. It also eliminates the need for me to place multiple orders.

 

Living in California has been a new challenge for me. I never cared about brands or fashion until I moved here and realized that that is a major part of the culture here. I easily and quickly got swooped into the belief that to be successful and to show your status it was essential to have all these things. Trying to get the new and shiny electronics or the newest fashion trend didn’t make me happy. It made me anxious and depressed because I felt like I was behind or not good enough if I didn’t have them. I live my life so comfortably now and okay with knowing that I don’t need all these things. My iPhone is most certainly not a newer model and my laptop is a Google Chromebook I purchased 5 years ago. Both run smoothly and I have no desire to spend money for a new model when these work perfectly well.

When I write these posts I don’t urge for you to become minimalists. I urge that you rethink the importance of things in your lives. Are you truly happy and if not what can you do to change that? Our lives are short, fast and should be lived happily – not stressed over new things or what our hard earned money can buy.

 

I challenge you the next time you go shopping to hold each item in your hand for five minutes. Imagine it in your life, walk around with it, connect with it. Do you need it? Does it spark joy?

Leave comments below and discuss!

Minimalist Journey: Storage Cleaning

One step closer!

This last Sunday I went through all my outdoor storage. Our apartment balcony was having work done for three months so it was a relief to finally go out there and clean the area, especially with my new journey!

The timing that I decided to look through my storage was perfect, actually. A few days before, I had scrolled through and read a post about minimalism and decluttering. The person who wrote it was for decluttering but not the full mindset of minimalism. Basically, she was stating that minimalists are all rich people and able to throw out what they want with zero consequence. I continued to read on and her post was giving step by step instructions on how you can be a minimalist when you have a low income. Reading this post I felt a little upset with the author. It seemed that she didn’t have the full grasp of minimalism at all.

Now, living in California, it’s extremely expensive. I have a wonderful job that pays me very well but when a studio apartment alone can be $2,000 here…your check goes FAST. I understood her points that when you have a low income, you can’t always afford to get rid of extra clothes or Tupperware lying around. But remember what I said it my first post about minimalism? There are no rules. Everyone lives different lives and minimalism is what YOU want it to be!

That being said, some of her post did stick with me while I cleaned out my storage. There are some things, depending on you or your situation, that you do need to keep in storage until you’re ready for it. For instance, while cleaning mine, I found a bunch of Tupperware and kitchen pans. I have no use for them right now since I share an apartment with my mother but someday I’ll move out and will need them! So instead of donating them now and having to buy more in the future, it’s more cost effective for me to keep them in storage.

I actually did get rid of a lot of stuff though. I had two plastic bins filled with things from my previous moves so it was definitely time to look through and purge.

Here’s what I got rid of:

  • A set of electronic candles
  • Small cork board
  • Shower curtain
  • Bathroom set(toothbrush holder, glass, and soap dispenser)
  • Shower Curtain Rings
  • Lamp
  • DVD stand
  • DVD player
  • Sweaters
  • Mugs
  • Printer

These were all very easy to toss out. Since moving to this new apartment, I had replaced my shower curtain, bathroom set, rings, and lamp so keeping doubles was not necessary. The rest were other items I just never use or needed so into the donation pile they all went.

It felt so great seeing the outdoor storage room completely organized and decluttered! It’s not an eyesore anymore and it’s so much easier to find everything. Do I miss anything I donated? NOPE. Taking everything to the donation center felt so freeing mentally and physically. I have more space for things that matter and once I move again, I’ll have less to go through and pack!

6 Ways I Save For Travel

Lately I’ve been focusing on myself and experiences I want in life. Towards the end of 2017 I got bit by the travel bug and I got bit hard.  I’ve done my fair share of traveling and have been all over the United States and even visited England and Scotland when I was younger.

Just recently I went to Los Angeles with my boyfriend and our friend for a concert. Flying down to L.A. for one night for a concert was something I’d never done before and it was worth it

We all know traveling can be expensive so before I start booking any vacations, I’m doing what I can to prepare for the expenses.

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For starters, I’ve been embracing minimalism. Since taking on this new lifestyle, I’ve saved money by not buying “stuff”. I’ve really been taking a look at my life and seeing what’s important to me and what’s not. It’s been a huge eye opener looking through all my things and seeing what purchases I’ve made throughout the years and how I can do better.

Picking up extra shifts at work. I’ve read a lot of travel blogs where the blogger is able to do all their traveling because they don’t have a job with set schedules. While amazing and fortunate, that is not the case for a lot of people, including me. I work a 4/10 schedule so I always have an extra day or two to work when I can. It puts more money in my check and adds PTO time that I can use for future travel.

Doordash. What I like about Doordash is that I don’t feel obligated to do it everyday or every week. I go completely based off my schedule and when I feel I have the time to do it. The money you earn is not taxed and 100% goes to you weekly. It’s perfect for when I’m in a pinch and need some extra cash. They also have their busy hours where they’ll over anywhere from $1-$6 extra for each delivery. The one thing I get paranoid about though is the fact that it isn’t taxed and I don’t want to make too much to where I’m owing money back during tax season.

Applied for a credit card*. I only have two credit cards and recently cancelled one since I never used it much. I wanted to get a new one that would be perfect for traveling and getting me started. I did some research and found the Capital One Venture card. It had great reviews from customers and the perks are great!

  • 2x miles for every $1 spent
  • 10x miles for every $1 spent on hotels (using their own link)
  • 0% APR for the first year
  • $0 annual fee for intro year
  • BONUS 50,000 miles if you spend $3,000 in the first 3 months of opening account
  • And many more! Check out their site here

 

Taking surveys. There are so many sites to go on but the one I use is Valued Opinions. It’s very easy to use and surveys are frequent. Once you reach a certain dollar amount you can get gift cards, donate to charities, or even get some miles through Southwest!

Lucky Day app. This one isn’t necessarily saving money but you can get some awesome rewards through it! Literally it’s a scratcher/lottery app where you can win actual money and tokens! Tokens can be saved and used to get rewards. I just cashed out 10 million tokens for a $10 Starbucks gift card – how awesome is that! It’s not complicated and no strings attached – just open your app, play some scratchers, and get rewards!

What ways do you save for traveling? Comment and share below!

 

*Credit card is not sponsored in any way by me.

About Me

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To start I need a proper introduction ~

My name is Kait and I’m a 23 year old living in the wonderful Bay Area. I moved here from Minnesota in 2012. I currently work in the vet industry and have 2 cats of my own, Bart and Shiloh. I love going to concerts and festivals, binge watching shows on Netflix, hockey and baseball, and a huge nerd for Lord of the Rings(also Star Wars, Harry Potter, The Hunger Games, all the typical teenage fiction…you get the picture).

Around September 2018, I decided to really look at my life. I mean REALLY look at it. There was so much stuff in my room that it gave me a ridiculous amount of anxiety to look at. I looked at my closet with clothes and felt like I was drowning. Then I saw it. I was scrolling through Pinterest and came across a post – Minimalism. I had heard about minimalism before but never really looked into it. So I started reading up on it and quickly became hungry to learn more. I loved reading about all these people’s stories and what minimalism meant to them. I loved the fact that there was no “right” way to be a minimalist either. And so began my purge. I wanted this mindset of minimalism and have more experiences than stuff in my life. I wanted to feel full and be filled with positive energy every day.

So here I am, candidly Kait. By following me, you’ll follow my journey with minimalism, my struggles and resolves with mental health, and share in my love for travel! I hope to inspire you and bring comfort that may be needed.