One To Nothin'

All About Self-Care, Sis (plus, a giveaway!)

Sup, fam? It’s been a minute. And by minute I mean months and months--the longest blog hiatus I’ve had since starting this thing seven years ago. Whoa. Anyway, I’m here to talk to you guys about personal aesthetic.

I’ve been struggling with some personal stuff, which I’ll hopefully be able to bring myself to write about eventually, but for today I’m keeping it light. I only mention it because I’ve weirdly found comfort in upkeep. My nails, hair, skincare routine--all the stuff I’ve always enjoyed but recently have been taking to the next level has been my form of self care, which presents itself in many different ways. In the past it’s been clean eating/cleanses, strenuous workout challenges/marathon training, blogging (ahem), baking/doing puzzles/rewatching The Office all the way through for the 65th time/etc.

These days it’s all about the aesthetic (and easing my way back into a fitness routine because my sanity depends on it). Maybe it’s all the work trips to LA, or the inspiring women I’m surrounded by every day at work, or the incredible Sephora products we’re gifted on a regular basis, but I’m more motivated than ever before to establish, maintain, and rock my own personal style. So without further ado, here are some of the ways I’ve been changing my lewk lately:

Get Your Nails Did

I used to think getting my nails done was the BIGGEST waste of time and money. I’d save it for special occasions, like a sister date or an upcoming wedding, but after getting one of the best gel manicures of my life a couple months ago, my attitude changed. I noticed that I felt more put together without any chips in my polish, and with a strong coat of gel I wasn’t able to pick at my nails (or skin for that matter)--a bad but very real anxious habit I have. Then as my nails got longer and longer, I realized I could actually shape them. Usually the default when you go to a nail salon is a square shape, and although I’ve never been fond of the square-shaped nail, I thought that was just part of it unless you got acrylics (which are not my cup of tea). I showed a lady a photo of the shape I wanted and she crushed it. Ever since I’ve been SO happy with the way they look. My fingers look longer and more elegant--I actually want to wear rings now! I know it doesn’t seem like nails are that big of a deal, but for whatever reason this small change has boosted my confidence and made me want to step it up in other areas as well.

I Do My Hair Toss

A few weeks ago it suddenly occurred to me that I hadn’t had proper bangs since I was six years old. I’d been noticing them on trendy gals walking down the street and admiring them in trend reports for months, but I never considered that I could get them until I was in LA and mentioned the idea to some of my coworkers. They were into the idea, and I booked the appointment right away. Again, I brought photos (there’s incredible bang-spiration on this IG account) with me to the appointment, and told the stylist that I had natural waves, but they don’t come out unless I have layers or humidity to work with--neither of which were accessible to me at the time. She gave me the fringe and the layers knowing my goal was to be able to let it air dry while still looking interesting (instead of the limp mess it would’ve been), and no joke, I’ve never gotten so many compliments on a haircut in my entire life. Like, the past two weeks have been SO validating, and somewhat uncomfortable *shivers* #introvertproblems BUT I’m stoked, I’m grateful, and I’m so into the 70s vibe they’re giving me. Shout out to Marquee Salon in Oakland for giving me the exact look I wanted--I had never even been there before, but I will definitely be back (probably sooner than I’d like to be considering how fast my hair grows).

Skin So Fresh & So Clean, Clean

Ever since I started working at Sephora (and rapidly reaching the end of my 20s…) skincare has become my thing. I’ve also noticed that any time I post about skincare routines on Instagram I get a LOT of questions from my other late-twenties buddies, so I think I’ll do an in-depth post about it with all my favorite products later, but for now, here’s a quick rundown of my skincare routine, which is half signs-of-aging prevention and half meditation because the actual act of layering these luxurious-feeling, great-smelling products onto my face and neck is truly a massage moment (PSA: I have combination skin that’s not acne-prone, and my concerns are fine lines, dryness, texture, and visible pores).

Cleanser, vitamin-c serum, under-eye cream, moisturizer (I am OBSESSED with this exfoliating moisturizer right now, sunscreen with UV and pollution/blue light protection (this one is basically a primer--seriously, it feels like velvet, isn’t greasy, and makes my foundation go on smoothly), foundation and the rest of my makeup routine. I also have a powder sunscreen so I can reapply SPF without messing up my makeup later in the day.

Cleanser (double cleansing with a makeup-removing oil balm if I’m feeling extra), a retinol-containing serum (brightens and reduces fine lines), under-eye cream, and a thick, super-hydrating moisturizer.

Weekly extras:
Usually once or twice a week I’ll do a hydrating mask on my forehead and cheeks and a pore-clearing (usually containing charcoal) mask on my nose and chin. I’ve also been really into overnight masks lately (they dry down like a serum, so no worries about pillow transfer or any of that), so when I’m feeling lazy, I’ll just put on an overnight mask after cleansing and rinse it off in the morning (this one smells amazing) Aaaaand when i’m being good, I’ll do a peel once a week, whether it’s an AHA/BHA-packed mask like this one or peel pads like these guys . I know acids and “peels” can sound intimidating, but TRUST they won’t burn your skin off, they’ll just make your skin smoother and brighter by sloughing away dead skin cells (yum).

If My Body Had A Say

Finally, I’ll be the first to admit that I’m terrible at remembering to moisturize the rest of my body. I’ll spend 20 minutes on my face and let the rest of my skin dry out like a prune, but recently I’ve been trying to be better about it. This cream is definitely helping because it smells like lying topless on an isolated beach in Kauai drinking a pina colada feels and supposedly it helps get rid of cellulite (yes, please). The other moisturizer situation I’m into lately is gradual self-tanning lotion. Not even the fancy stuff, I’m talking Jergens . If I put it on as a moisturizer every time I get out of the shower, I don’t look like my skin is see-through, which is an actual concern for me.

Let Me See Your Grill

Finally, and most excitingly, I got an email from a representative from Smile Brilliant a few months ago, and they offered to send me a super legit teeth whitening kit. I enthusiastically agreed because I always want my teeth to be brighter (cough, daily coffee and tea stains, cough), and I’d never tried anything more professional than drugstore whitening strips. They sent me this kit that has everything you need to create a mold of your teeth--you combine these two playdough-like molds together and bite into it, let it harden, and send them back to the lab in prepaid packaging to have the retainer-type trays made. Within a few days they were sent back to me, and I’ve been using them ever since. They sent me syringes of tooth whitening gel and even threw in a bunch of desensitizing gel because I mentioned that was one of my concerns--my teeth are just as sensi as I am. They are super convenient and effective, especially the more consistently you use them. You can keep them on for 1-3 hours depending on how quickly you want results, so I generally put the tray in after dinner before working out, showering, reading, or binge-watching Netflix. Afterward you brush your teeth and fill the same trays with the desensitizing gel and wear for about 15 minutes. Check out the before and after photos:
These are a game-changer. At first I was concerned about the amount of time I’d have to dedicate to it, but it’s so easy and gratifying to know that while you’re washing the dishes or waiting to switch the laundry, you’re also getting whiter teeth. Thanks so much for sending over, Smile Brilliant!

If you're interested in getting your own kit, enter the giveaway here--it's for a $149 Smile Brilliant credit and open to the US, UK, Australia and Canada!

Plus, you can use the code onetonothin15 to get 15% off!

I honestly never imagined that taking care of such seemingly insignificant things could boost my confidence so much and help me keep it together. Sometimes when things are imploding, it’s nice to feel like you can control something, even if it’s just how nice your hands or teeth look. When I just want to crawl under my covers and have a good cry, it’s nice to go into the office and have someone notice and appreciate the effort, kind of like dressing up when you feel ill. Fake it ’til you make it, baby.

How have you been practicing self-care lately?

My City By The Bay

This post is sponsored by Good2Go but the content and opinions expressed here are my own.
It's no secret that I'm a fan of California, but lately I've been advocating hard for the East Bay because I live in Oakland, but not today, friends. Today I want to talk about San Francisco, the city that originally stole my heart and made me love this place. My current job is the first I've had since moving here (happy five-year Californiaversary to meeee!) that has an office in SF proper, and the chick who wrote this post would be VERY stoked about this.
Don't get me wrong, I'm still fully in love with my job and the Bay Area, but the fact that the ferry building (shown above) filled with locally made trinkets, all-organic-vegan-free-range-baked-today-omg-smells-so-good food, with a gorgeous view of the Bay Bridge and ALL the water is a half-mile walk from my office is clearly a thing I take for granted since I haven't even mentioned it here.
There's even a giant farmers market that pops up in front of it every Tuesday and Saturday where I once met a Top Chef contestant and picked out ingredients with the founder of Baia Pasta so he could make us the most amazing pasta dish (while we drank wine and learned about the complex process of making pasta). But on this particular Tuesday, my coworker and beautiful friend Ashley and I just walked over at lunchtime and played with the fresh veggies and bought kombucha (am I assimilated or what?).
While we walked around the ferry building, I checked out the new GOOD2GO app, which is an SF-specific service that points you in the direction of the closest *nice* restroom around and provides you with a QR code that unlocks the door and even automatically opens them for you (this would've come in SO handy when I was nannying and trying to maneuver a giant stroller and two kids under 3 years old who seem to have to pee every 10 minutes). 
It told us to go toward the Embarcadero Center just 0.3 miles away from the farmers market, so we headed that way and played in front of this used-to-be fountain on our way over (water conservation FTW). Unfortunately this bathroom was actually a *future* location, so I didn't manage to find it on this go around, but I ventured out toward SOMA a couple days later and took advantage of the Peet's Coffee location, shown below.
How cute is this sign?!
It was super convenient, and you can get a free trial right now, so if you're planning a trip to SF any time soon, first of all, call me so we can get oysters and bubbles together, but secondly, download the app here so you're never stranded without a bathroom (trust me, there are plenty restrooms you'll want to avoid around this city).

Sooo when are you coming to hang out?

Thanks GOOD2GO for sponsoring this post! 


Stay Golden

I just had the best weekend, guys.

I may not be able to stand up without groaning today and I might not have sleep nearly as much as one should on a weekend, but waking up at 4am to run 13.1 miles in San Francisco yesterday was totally worth it. My beautiful and inspirational BFF, Eva, drove down from Oregon so we could enjoy some Type 2 Fun--a concept coined by Eva that perfectly describes the agony and pure joy that is completing a super challenging task, in this case running for over two hours straight. Type 2 Fun is the sense of pride and warm fuzzies you feel AFTER the fact even though you're miserable and asking yourself why you'd ever pay money to torture yourself while you're doing it.
Type 1 Fun is great too, don't get me wrong. It's impulsively eating a donut, drinking rose or golden beer on a sunny afternoon, or hugging your best friend when you haven't seen her in too long. Our weekend was full of Type 1 as well. We explored adorable shops on Piedmont Ave, drank Michelob ULTRA Pure Gold, ate all the things we couldn't eat during the Whole30 last month (including boba tea, of course #runningonboba), and caught up on every last detail we've missed out on by not being able to physically train together.
But Type 2 you gotta work for, and that makes it that much more satisfying. It's the reason hiking Mt. Whitney was the best thing I've ever done even though I wanted to chop my legs off on the way down. It's the reason I ran a full marathon down in Southern California two Novembers ago even though I'd see the full-ers run past as I finished my 13.1s and thought to myself, "god, I'm so glad I'm finished and not doing another one of these," every single time. It's the reason I didn't eat sugar or bread for all of March, and how I started reading so many books a month.
It's why I signed up for a Spartan Race in June (AGHHH) and it's why I always have things like "go sky-diving" and "hike half dome" on my bucket list. I love challenges, and the harder it is, the happier I am after the fact. The San Francisco Rock 'n Roll half marathon was my seventh half I've completed, and still at 6:15am, shivering in the dark waiting for our turn to start, my stomach quivered with nerves and I wondered for the bajillionth time, WHY DID I DO THIS?!
Then we started running, the sun came out as we ran over the Golden Gate Bridge, and I only went over my personal best time by about two minutes--and there was my answer. 
Thank you to Michelob ULTRA for sponsoring this post. Check out their new golden brew made with organic grains here


Mood & Wine Pairings

Friends, Grocery Outlet is having a massive sale on all the wine right now, and they challenged me to come up with some pairings found throughout the store. I found all kinds of good stuff, but instead of just pairing the wine with food, I thought I'd pair it with the moods or phases, if you will, that I tend to cycle through. Go ahead and press play... you know it's gonna get weird.

First up is my fancy, indulgent side. She's usually celebrating something and drinking bubbles, like this sparkling rosé. She's pretty into fancy goat or sheep cheeses, cured meats, and keeping her pinky up when drinking. 

Next up is my hyper, nostalgic side. Every once in a while my inner sorority girl just wants to make everyone do shots, but since we're grown ups now, it usually presents itself as the occasional mini beer pong game and the not-so-occasional Solo cup drinking device for Chardonnay. At the end of the night no one is more grateful for microwave burritos than I am.
Then comes my health nut phase. The one who subjects herself to 30 days of sugar, gluten, grain-free diets and 6am Mon-Fri workouts. She doesn't always drink, but when she does it's usually something light, low in sugar, and with plenty of veggies on the side. 

Finally, there's the high anxiety, low motivation version of myself who wants to wallow in chocolate, binge watch Netflix and drink all the red wine. It's a somewhat unfortunate but fully necessary state in which I am simultaneously recharging and being completely useless.

Which wines do YOU pair with your different moods?

Thanks so much to Grocery Outlet for sponsoring this post. Be sure to stop by one of their stores to get 20% their entire wine selection until Tuesday, April 3. Plus, click here to get $3 off any purchase


House Tour

MMG Cribs is back, y'all! 
This time we're coming through with the common areas, which I can mostly thank my roommates for making pretty. I did get to contribute this baller Bowie print thanks to Photowall though, before we get into all that, I want you to take a moment to reminisce with me. I showed you my old apartment in Livermore in this post, I showed you my room makeover in this post, but I want you to take a trip back to my first year in this place. Just four short years ago, right after moving out of Livermore (on my birthday, I might add), temporarily into the grandparents-of-my-nanny-kids's house, I found this apartment on Craigslist with my roommate (who I hadn't met IRL yet).
This was a v stressful time, y'all. Right after paying the first month's rent and deposit, I realized I needed to register my car in California in order to get a street parking pass in my neighborhood--cut past several DMV visits and LOTS of fees to me calling my sister hysterical because I was about to overdraft on my account. My sister leant me $50, I calmed down, and I went on to get two job offers within a week of moving in (THANK THE LAWD). All this to say I sure as hell didn't have extra funds lying around to buy a nice couch or a TV (things my Livermore apartment was already stocked with). Just look at it! I got used to it though and chose to spend the small change I had that year on essentials like hiking boots for Mt. Whitney and a snow jacket/pants (from the kids section) for my first snowboarding experience (traumatic), so here I am in my bare bones apartment, rockin' my ski resort wear. That TV stand (if you can call it that) was found on the side of the road, just like our mirror and quite a few other essential household items. 
Now that we have that background story, please feast your eyes on our still-a-work-in-progress home. We've come a long way, from that time my boyfriend-at-the-time moved in and brought a bunch of furniture with him (and didn't take it when he moved out--bless him) to the time a not-boyfriend-dude moved in for a month and installed this here shelf/mug storage system (presumably because he was too nervous to ask us to make room for his shit). My two current roomies brought with them shelves, national park prints, book-styling skills, and a balcony space makeover. Isn't it cozy? Ziggy loves sunbathing out here with the succulents. 
Most recently I hung this abstract print of David Bowie, a gift from Photowall--it was delivered with a DIY frame and the print all scrolled up. I was nervous I was going to mess it up, but it was actually super intuitive and it turned out awesome. I love how the red brightens up the room, and since Ziggy is named after Bowie, I thought it was only appropriate to pay tribute to him after looking through all the available prints. They will print your own photo on the canvas as well, which I will definitely consider in the future.
If you're interested in ordering a print from Photowall, you can get 20% off with this code: 
 OnetoNothinCampaign2018 just for the next 30 days
Now, pleeeease tell me your first-real-adult/broke-af apartment stories. All a part of the adulting process, y'all. 

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