What Do You Want Me to Write About in 2018?

What Do You Want Me to Write About in 2018?

It’s halfway through January and this is my first blog post of the year.

I used to look forward to writing blog posts because it’s extremely therapeutic to have a creative outlet where you can dictate conversation and let your thoughts flow. However, as my blog has become more of a business vs. a hobby, I’ve found myself writing less and less. Why?

Well, there are a lot of reasons. For one, Brand’s care less and less about blog posts because Instagram is at it’s peak and that’s where users spend most of their time looking for new Brands and making purchases. So why would they commission bloggers to craft a long-form post when majority of their audiences are on Instagram and want quick/visual content? It’s a valid point and I get it, especially as a publicist first. In all honestly, I rarely click onto people’s blogs to read their posts. Like most of us, I stick with Instagram because it’s “easy” and everything is in one place.

Secondly, video and even podcasts have become such a large part of our culture that it just feels more appealing to watch or listen to something vs. read something. I can also relate to this, especially as someone who can at times have the attention span of a gnat. Plus, with things like Snapchat and Instagram Stories, you can basically tell the same narrative, just through a different vertical.

So here is my challenge and the question that I pose to myself in 2018 – How do I stay motivated to continue to create blog content, while also sparking my followers interest enough to read what I’m writing? This answer may seem obvious, but it’s the only one I can come up with that feels “right” to me – I need to write about things that matter and are timely. However, I don’t love to get political or controversial on my blog because it’s supposed to be a light and uplifting space vs. a dark and gloomy one.  So I somehow need to find the balance between talking about relevant things, while still keeping it positive.

What do you guys think? What kind of content would make you want to read someone’s blog? Do I need to get more personal? Do you want me to divulge on tips & tricks? Travel itineraries? You guys inspire me, so let me know and I will do just that – get inspired to write more.

Reflecting on 2017 & Here’s to 2018

Reflecting on 2017 & Here’s to 2018

Wow! What a year it has been.

2017 has brought me many things – new friendships, success, self awareness, more travel, happiness and so much more. Sometimes it’s hard to put it into words, but I’m really so thankful and grateful that I’m able to do what I love each and every day. The truth is, I couldn’t do it without all of you, so THANK YOU from the bottom of my heart for supporting me this past year.

At the start of the year, I wrote a few resolutions down and I’m happy to say I achieved all of them, which makes me feel really good. Nothing is more rewarding than settings goals and hitting them. So, I’m going to do it again. Of course, there are more personal goals I’m going to be setting that I’ll keep to myself, but below are a few that I’m willing to share (including mostly business goals). Here it goes…

  • Travel even MORE (already planned for 2018: Thailand, a TBD trip in March and Las Vegas)
  • Hit 100K followers on Instagram
  • Continue to grow my new YouTube channel, Andrea & Alyssa: No Filter 
  • Post with a purpose (only post premium and artistic content, not just any old photo for the sake of posting)
  • Mentor more young women (from a PR or influencer standpoint)
  • Donate more (I get so many things throughout the year, so instead of holding onto things I don’t need, I want to continue to give them away to those who need them more)
  • Make the gym a bigger priority (with two jobs, it’s easy to make excuses)
  • Say “yes” more

What are your resolutions? Happy New Year!

Travel Diary: Jamaica

Travel Diary: Jamaica

If you follow me on Instagram, you know I was recently in Jamaica with some of my best blogger babes (@eastcoastfox & @laurenmazzei) and our amazing photographer (@LaurelCreative). After I travel, I love writing up travel diaries, where I share my travel recommendations and spill on what I did while away. It’s a great way for me to not only recap on my trip, but to help those who plan to travel to the same area.

This was my first time traveling with other bloggers and a photographer and it was amazing. These girls aren’t just business partners – they’ve become best friends and it’s so fun to travel with people who “get you” and have the same interests. We would spend mornings shooting and the rest of the day girl chatting and hanging around by the pool/exploring Jamaica.

Now, onto the part you care about – where we stayed and what we did.

We flew from JFK to Montego Bay, Jamaica. The flight is just under 3 1/2 hours, which isn’t too bad. However, out hotel was in Ochos Rios, which is about 1 1/2 hours from the airport. Knowing this, we took an early morning flight so that our first day was still a full one (we got to our hotel around 1pm).

Our hotel, The Moon Palace Jamaica, was beautiful and was honestly the nicest all-inclusive I’ve ever stayed at (and I’ve stayed at a bunch). It was fully loaded and had so many offerings including 24/7 room service, fine dining (the Japanese restaurant was our favorite), a snack bar, a coffee bar and a sushi stand. There were also water sports, a huge pool slide and one of those manmade surf parks.

Aside from the abundance of activities on the grounds of the resort, there was a plethora of pools, hot tubs, sun beds and lounge chairs on the beach. The resort was HUGE and super clean. It was also very family-friendly, so I’d definitely recommend it for those of you with kids.

Since we weren’t there too long and since I’ve been to Jamaica once before, we kind of just stuck to the hotel (since there was so much to do). However, one day we did venture into town and enjoyed margaritas as Margaritaville, as well as shopping in the neighboring area.

However, if it’s your first time in Jamaica, I would highly recommend stopping by Dunns River Falls, which is one of Jamaica’s national treasures. It’s a bit hard to explain, but it’s basically a cascading waterfall that you can climb. You hold hands and form a human chain as you make your way up the waterfall. When you get to the top, there are tons of shops and tourist attractions. Although we didn’t do it this trip, I have done it in the past and it’s a must-do if you’re in the Ochos Rios area.

For those of you that are interested in everything I wore while on my trip, I’ve included a gallery below. Just click on the image to purchase! Any questions? Leave me a comment and I’ll be sure to get back to you.

How to Prep for Holiday Party Season

How to Prep for Holiday Party Season

It’s holiday party season and I’m sharing tips and product recommendations to help you prep for your next night out! First, let’s start with the beauty routine.

I love to prep my skin before I begin makeup application and lately I’ve been really into exfoliating my face since it tends to get really dry in the winter. I’ve been using the Primal Life Facial Kit, Quiver Sonic Facial Cleansing Brush, along with face wash to rid of dead skin, help with fine lines/wrinkles and to tighten and tone. Quiver’s sonic vibrations stimulate your facial muscles and help increase collagen production- leaving your skin looking lifted, more awake, incredibly beautiful and wonderfully balanced- 100% naturally. (Ps: use this code PLOBOXX17 for 20% off a future purchase!)

Now that my face is washed, I move on to grooming to make sure everything is in tip-top shape. I’d recommend using Nad’s Facial Wand Eyebrow Shaper to achieve perfectly-shaped eyebrows. It’s super easy to use and the SlimTip Precision Applicator is filled with a natural, non-heat formula that washes away with water. Seriously the quickest and easiest way to do touch-ups at home.

Ok, so now that my eyebrows are looking fierce, it’s time for makeup. Lately, I’ve been obsessed with the Whoosh Beauty Fold Out Face palette, which is an entire beauty bag that fits in the palm of your hand, including universally flattering eye shadows, flawless complexion coverage, dark and light contouring powders, cool and warm blushes. Plus, it even has a must-have highlighter. I’m obsessed because this palette is literally a one-stop shop for all of your makeup  needs. (Ps: Use code: BB15OFF for 15% off your Woosh Beauty purchase!)

Now that you’re looking fabulous, fix up your hair in loose waves and spray on some perfume in your pulse points
(wrists, neck, décolletage). I’ve been loving Paris Hilton’s new feminine fragrance, ROSÉ RUSH Paris Hilton. It floral and rose petal notes, lychee, papaya and amber.

Lastly, pick out an outfit that you know will turn heads. I love to wear something simple (either black or red), with one statement piece. I’ve been especially loving my Vince Camuto “Chelsea” boots lately (yes, they’re leopard)! They have triangular panels of goring, a rounded almond toe and a matching pull tab.

Now you’re ready to go!

Disclaimer: This post is sponsored by BabbleBoxx.com

 

The Victoria’s Secret Model Makeover: Tips & Tricks

The Victoria’s Secret Model Makeover: Tips & Tricks

Disclaimer: a 5’3 girl is writing this post

Tonight is the night – the 2017 VS Fashion Show will air featuring a bevy of toned models with legs for days and perfect beachy-wavy hairdos. Everyone will criticize the models, but really we just want to be them (at least I do).

Unfortunately for me, I can’t grow 7+ inches overnight, but what I can do (and you can too) is mimic the same look at home. We all know beauty comes from within, but nothing is a bigger confidence booster than knowing you look bomb.com and owning it.

Let’s start with the hair and makeup. VS is famous for their signature beachy-wavy hair look. Last year, they partnered with Beachwaver to provide the hair tools and styling for the show (I’m not sure if they’re partnering with them again this year). And let me just tell you, this hair tool seriously makes curling your hair look like a walk in the park. See the below video.

So to me, this is a must-have. Plus, if you consider yourself someone who isn’t very good at styling hair, this thing looks FOOL proof. I’m ordering one now… You can get your own by clicking the photo below.

Next up is makeup. You’ve probably noticed that the models don’t wear anything too heavy or thick. Makeup is generally kept very natural and “glowy” looking. As such, I’d recommend sticking with these essentials: a highlighting palette (to use as your highlight and eye shadow), a colored in brow (not too heavy!), a sweep of blush and a nude lip. I’ve linked to some of my favorite and go-to products below in each of these categories.

Now onto the wardrobe essentials. Nothing makes me feel like more of a VS Angel than my pink silk robe. Real talk – I wanted a robe for my photographs so I ordered this one off of Amazon for $14.99. This taught me that you really don’t need to spend a lot for something so simple because it looks just as nice as an expensive robe. Plus, I can’t even explain how much use I’ve gotten out of this thing… I wear it when I’m getting ready and have shot in it multiple times.

Lastly, all angels need one final thing – a good push up bra. Let’s face it, there is no way those models have big boobs because literally nothing on them is big. This is where Victoria Secret hit the jackpot by creating a bra that literally gives anyone cleavage – the Bombshell Bra, which is touted to “add two cup sizes”.  Fortunately for me, I don’t need help in this department, but for those of you that do – this this WORKS. I know because I’ve had friends wear it.

That’s a wrap! I hope this tips inspired you to unleash your inner-angel. I don’t expect you to try these tips tonight (it is a Tuesday after all), but you better order everything in time to spice up your weekend a bit!