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6 REAL THINGS NEW + EXPECTING MAMAS NEED TO KNOW ABOUT BREASTFEEDING IN THE FIRST FEW WEEKS

September 29, 2017


Hey! Congrats mama on the pending arrival of your little bundle of joy. If you're reading this, it's likely that you're at the point where you may be considering if you plan to breastfeed your baby or not. I may be biased but I've always been a fan of liquid gold for fresh out the womb little ones for various reasons - one being that I'm a crunchy mommy + I enjoy the road less traveled. However, if you also feel you may not breastfeed, IT IS OKAY! There can be many reasons why a woman chooses to not breastfeed as well. One good reason...

THAT SH*T HURTS!! 
Well, for most of us it does in the first couple of weeks. Teehee. 


Other than that, with baby comes LOTS of changes within and outside of bodies. Thumbs up for bigger boobs though, right? If you're planning to breastfeed for the "recommended" 6 months to a year or if you plan to do so exclusively, here are 6 things you'll need to know - or better yet, expect.


AGAIN, IT JUST MAY HURT YA! 

... in the beginning. No one ever told me this when I had my first born. Then again, it may also not hurt you - it depends, I'm sure. But for most new moms, once our "real milk" begins to come in a few days after baby is born, you should prepare for some engorgement. No woman enjoys pain but the things we do for our babies... 

Yes, your boobs will feel full, swollen, and with a newborn sucking on your bosom, a terrible latch along with other things can create a disaster. From sore boobs to cracked and hurting nipples. Ouch! I'll be the first to say that I don't remember having this pain with my first kid but with my newborn daughter... O M G! I literally have to re-learn how to breastfeed because of the pain I've experienced. After week 2, for many of us - it'll get better. Like they say, "you gotta push through it - if you can."


MOISTURIZE! PRACTICE! MOISTURIZE AGAIN! 

With cracked and hurting nipples, comes the need to get them healing. You'll hear time and time again that you should continue to feed through the pain. After all baby still has to learn how to properly latch on without hurting you. Practice makes perfect. For some women, it's just not worth it and that's totally understandable. Some mamas try while using nipple shields. You could also pump instead of putting baby to breast for a short time to encourage healing. 

If you want, nipple creams such as what hospitals give can be used but there is nothing better than freebies - your own breastmilk. You can express some of your own milk to apply to your nipples to get them back to normal. Almond or olive oil are good too. 


BECOMING A NUDIST MAY BE AN OPTION

Don't worry - only do this in the comfort of your own home if you choose. When breastfeeding, you will be partially naked a lot of the time. In my opinion, it's better this way because you never know with your breastfed baby - they could eat around the clock! 

Invest in tank tops and comfy nursing bras too. Those will be your new best friends. Specifically because they will have detachable straps and such to make accessing the boob much easier without you having to destroy your good non-nursing bras. I'm loving these.


PUMP FOR CONVENIENCE, NOT FOR SHOW.

So, there seems to be some mommy who-can-pump-the-most-milk cult going on. I've seen quite a few women be obsessed with pumping huge supplies of milk to store and show-off. Don't be that mom. Then again, there are also women concerned with whether they have enough milk for their baby. To me, what you produce is more than enough (unless you're not caring for yourself properly and drying up). 

I think it's great to be able to breastfeed but to also be able to pump milk when needed for days where you want to get away for a few hours and interact with actual adults or allow daddy to do some extra bonding through bottle feeding. If your insurance won't cover a pump, this double, electric pump has been the bees knees for me and doesn't break the bank either! 


STAY HYDRATED MAMA!

It's quite obvious, okay. You want to make sure you're taking care of yourself too. Drink PLENTY of water and always be sure to eat. I drank a lot of water during my pregnancy but slowed down after baby arrived so I had to fix that feeling of dehydration quick. 

You can feel a bit woosy after giving away so much to feed baby so keep hydrated at all times and your belly satisfied, even if you choose to eat one big meal a day and snack in between. 


FREE THE NIPPLE! 

Don't be ashamed to breastfeed in public. You'll be surprised at how quick you end up not caring what others think when you find yourself in a situation where you either forgot a bottle or baby refuses to wait. Do what makes you comfortable though, so although your nipple may be free, it's okay to cover up if you wish. 

I would find it quite rejuvenating to breastfeed in public without a cover-up most times. No one would be foolish enough to say something out of line to your face, right? If they are, this just gives you a great opportunity to burn off some good old post baby stress with shutting them up.





Affordable Eyewear 2017 w/ Firmoo Glasses

September 5, 2017

If you're in the market for finding affordable eyewear, then Firmoo Online Optical Store is the place to be. Firmoo is an online optical retailer offering prescription and non-prescription eyewear for men, women, and children. They have super chic and classic styles starting as low as $19 and nothing over $39. Now compared to most optical stores, this is a steal for anyone not wanting to donate a kidney for a pair of good-looking frames!

I love Firmoo for many reasons. They have new styles everyday, 90 day warranties, and a 30 day refund/exchange policy in place. Any eyewear lover is sure to find a style they love on their website - whether you're rocking a look for fun or as a staple wardrobe + accessories piece. 



I reached out to Firmoo recently regarding a quick collaboration recently. Not only did I want to reconnect with them as a brand but I also wanted to share some insight into what they offer by aiming for trends I've noticed. As of late, clear frames seem to be the GOAT. 

I actually find clear frames quite attractive. Due to my love for minimal and easy breezy aesthetic, my choice of eyewear just fits what I'm all about. Out of all available options, this style stole my attention. I'm rocking style #S1416 Medium in C6 - clear. Last I checked, it's also available in black and tortoise. 


Now, the great thing about Firmoo is that you can easily customize your style of frames. Mines are straight-forward with no prescription but if desired, you can opt for prescription lens, bifocals, etc. You can even choose the thickness of your frames or lens color. I will likely need a prescription lens so once I see an optometrist, I'll take these babies to get the lens replaced.

If you're really fancy, you can also choose to upgrade your packaging and eyewear accessories if you don't want the standard packaging shown above. Only if you're really fancy...


If you're like me and love a good promotion, they currently have a BOGO going on so hop on it if you're in the market for something new to dress your face. They also have several promo codes available on their site so you can actually choose what you'd like to take advantage of. I surely plan to. 


A VERY MINIMAL MAKEUP COLLECTION FOR NATURAL BEAUTY LOVERS

July 20, 2017
minimal makeup collection for natural beauty neoshaloves

This post has been a long time coming. Outside of holistic beauty tricks, I try to make sure my makeup purchases are always cruelty-free and vegan if I'm lucky. For starters, my makeup collection NEVER use to be this small. I was someone who once loved spending money on clothes, shoes, accessories, and makeup.

Like seriously, I hoarded some of everything!

A few years ago when I was heavy into purchasing various makeup and beauty products, I literally had a collection that could have me looking like a legit MUA. This was before I had kids, of course.

After becoming a mom, I really just wanted to purge and get rid of the overwhelm I felt when going through piles of my things. So, I got rid of a lot, including makeup over the years - hence, my love for the more minimal and simple things in life now. I love having the more natural look and glow. Keep it simple.

Not only does my keep it simple mantra really reflect how I purchase and collect things, everything I have now all merge with each other. From a specific set of colors in my wardrobe to my jewelry to my makeup. I stick to the basics, which allows me to not have to worry about whether I have clothes to wear that I won't have to take hours piecing together alongside going through an entire forever makeup application, and so forth.

Looking back now on the amount of money I spent and wasted - I'm glad I grew out of that phase entirely because.... ridiculous. Let's get into what I use now.

minimal makeup collection for natural beauty neoshaloves

I don't wear makeup often at all but when I do it's for things such as events, photos, my birthday, or date nights. Any other day, it's au natural baby! I always say there's no point in wearing makeup if your skincare routine doesn't exist - I definitely like to make sure my skin is cared for properly before, during, and after. 

Moisture is my personal friend so I make sure to moisturize and prep my face before using makeup. I'm a fan of the Black Radiance BB creams so that is all I use to lightly apply to my face along with a concealer that I mostly use for my under-eyes and eyelids.  

Pictured:
• Black Radiance BB Cream - 8917 Cafe (or 8921 Coffee Glaze), whichever is available.
• L.A Colors Pro Conceal HD Concealer - GC984 Toffee



minimal makeup collection for natural beauty neoshaloves

I own three small and compact makeup palettes these days but this one is my go-to every single time. All the colors reflect the taste of my wardrobe and love for neutrals. I usually rock browns and golds on my eyes. I don't use a primer on my eyes - only the LA Colors concealer. My liner of choice has been a liquid liner as of late. When I have more time, I may use my cream liner and angled brush to get my wing on - both in the color black.

My other two palettes feature one with 5 colors on the smoky + shimmery side (blacks, silvers, coppers, etc) and the other features 4 more "colorful" shades (Indigo, Red, Deep Purple, and Magenta Pink)...just for when I'm feeling fun and wanting to play with my look.

Pictured:
• Coastal Scents Go Palette - Cairo
• Coastal Scents Liquid Eyeliner - Jet


minimal makeup collection for natural beauty neoshaloves

My favorite part of wearing makeup when I do - lip color. I am head over heels with matte lips. I own three matte liquid lip colors that I love - the red being my ultimate go-to usually for just a pop of color. I have a color for a different type of look I go for - sultry, vamped, and laid back. Make sure you prep those lips and make sure they're nice and smooth before rocking a matte lip - or any lip color for that matter. 

Pictured:
Coloured Raine Cosmetics - Cherry Blossom
Coloured Raine Cosmetics - Roulette
Coloured Raine Cosmetics - Mars


Of course I have tools - one set of makeup brushes, my favorite mascara, and even a finishing spray. That's the bulk of it, literally. 

STAY AT HOME MOM-LIFE + RIWBOX HEADPHONES [VIDEO]

June 27, 2017
riwbox foldable headphones neoshaloves


My everyday life often consists of a daily routine that either stays the same most of the week or takes a few shortcuts throughout the day - lets say both on a regular basis. I get up every morning and usually have a nice cup of tea, then read chapter or so of any book I'm enjoying. My biggest task to meet on a regular however is being a mom. The greatest and sometimes hardest position ever! Especially doing it alone. I've been handling single parenting quite fine this year also - so I'm quite proud of myself. 

Single mom? Not quite. I have a pretty great partner in my life now that does A LOT for me that's made things just a bit easier. From taking initiative to clean my entire kitchen effortlessly when I'm too tired to or giving my pregnant behind much-needed breaks and enjoying quality time with my super active (sun)shine Channing. It's the little things. 

So in between running behind a carefree two year old to running multiple online businesses, work/life balance is something I don't even think exists because so much requires attention from me. The balance for me comes in the form of a "gut feeling". In my world, it's just much easier to go with the flow of things and not get so hung up on having such a strict "schedule". This is what works best for me.... just saying. 

stay at home mom neoshaloves

Two things that allow me to get work done and still juggle playtime with my firstborn - creative thinking and LOTS of music. Gotta keep the vibrations high. 

I do all of my work from the comforts of my laptop and as of late, on the floor. What's the point of owning a office desk right? - to easily say yes to the seat at the carpet level, duh? With my beverage of choice, playlists, and tasks awaiting my attention - I get to work. 

I bought my son this super affordable art easel from Ikea last month along with a couple of other things meant for his upcoming birthday to enjoy. So while he's being an artist or mechanic, I can actually accomplish some things. Lately, I've been vibing to my playlists on SoundCloud and Spotify using my new RiwBox Foldable Headphones. I LOVE THEM! 

riwbox foldable headphones neoshaloves

The brand sent me a discount code to give them a try. They're foldable, comfortable, noise cancelling, and definitely nice to look at. Plus the packaging wasn't bad either - the leather pouch that protects the headphones are a nice touch. My music sounds pretty good through them and I can work without getting annoyed by them. My last pair of headphones were too "itchy" and left me with questions. So if you're in the market for a new pair of headphones, you have my blessing on checking these out for sure. 

riwbox foldable headphones neoshaloves

riwbox foldable headphones neoshaloves

If you're curious, yes they work with all devices (with 3.5mm jack) - Apple, Android, Tablets, etc. The audio cord that's attached can control both your microphone and volumes. The cushy earpads are a lovely comfort too. You can see how I rock these and juggle mom-life in my latest YouTube video. I'M BACK... so subscribe if you enjoy!!!  


FTC Disclaimer: I was not compensated with monetary offerings to share this product, but given a discount to purchase and review. All imagery and opinions are 100% mine. 







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