Officially Moving to New York!

Hi everyone!

I hope you’re all doing great, and my apologies for not posting anything for a while. I’ve been really busy in the past few months, and it all worked out:

This Fall I’m going to work as a marketing intern at Only Hearts, in New York. I’ll be moving to New York this August, until the end of January 2019 and I’m so excited!

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Only Hearts is a lingerie and clothing brand, based in New York. Their pieces are worn by Kim and Khloe Kardashian, Kate Moss and Demi Lovato to name a few.  Only Hearts offers a full range of lifestyle lingerie, sleep- and loungewear and it’s all about being sexy yet glamorous. I’m really looking forward to joining their marketing team!

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Check out their Instagram here: @OnlyHearts1978

A must-have bucket list item: doing an internship in New York. Sometimes I don’t realize how blessed I am to get this opportunity and make this dream come true. It will be a period full of new experiences, meeting new people and living in an entirely new environment. Hopefully,  this opportunity will give me the chance to improve myself, not only in knowledge but also mentally.

Obviously, I’m a little nervous about moving to an entirely different and huge city like New York. I’ve always lived in a pretty small and quiet town in the Netherlands, and now I’m about to move to ‘the city that never sleeps’.

If any of you are living (or have lived) in the US, please let me know if you have any tips, or if you want to share any experiences just comment below!

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#8 Amazing Skincare Benefits Of Aloe Vera

What’s the one natural beauty product all beauty bloggers swear by? That’d be Aloe Vera. This tropical plant is known for its multiple uses and health benefits. In fact, it’s the gel that does the trick. Fortunately, you don’t need an actual Aloe Vera plant to enjoy its benefits. You can buy the gel at a lot of drugstores and health and food shops, and it’s entirely affordable!

In this post, I’ve summed up the most popular skincare uses for Aloe Vera which will make you ask yourself: why do I not own this amazing product yet?!

#8 Amazing Skincare Uses of Aloe Vera (TCOADG)

1. Treating skin conditions

Aloe Vera gel is a combination of vitamins, minerals, acids which makes it a great remedy for skin conditions (this is also the most common use of Aloe Vera gel).

For centuries people have been using Aloe Vera gel for treating minor cuts, soothing rashes, treating minor (sun)burns, accelerate wound healing, reducing infections and many other skin conditions. The gel is cooling and anti-inflammatory which makes it great for treating sunburns and soothing the skin. This sounds like the kind of product your grandma would pull out of her kitchen cabinet for any little problem, right…? It’s a must-have home remedy!

(If this is your first time using Aloe Vera: always do a patch-test on your hand before applying the gel on your face. Just to make sure you’re not allergic!) 

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2. Hair growth 

Aloe Vera contains proteolytic enzymes which repair the dead cells on your scalp and maintains its pH balance. This is why many people claim that applying the gel on their scalp (or using it as a conditioner) makes their hair grow faster. It has not been proven by any researches yet, but we’d like to believe it, don’t we? Also, what’s the harm?

Besides hair growth, Aloe Vera is believed to do many more wonders to your hair: it relieves an itchy scalp and significantly reduces dandruff. After using the gel as a conditioner, it will leave your hair smooth and silky. I say it’s worth the try, isn’t it?

3. Make-up Remover

It might be a little weird to think about: using a gel as a make-up remover. Honestly, it’s not something I would try out myself but there are people who did, and they’re loving it! The gel is very gentle and not harmful at all for the delicate skin around your eyes, the cooling ingredients also reduce the redness on your skin (e.g. acne scars, spots, rosea).

Just apply some gel on a cotton ball/ pad and use it like you’d use any make-up remover.

 

Aloe Pura Organic gel

This is the gel I own: Organic Aloe Vera Gel by Aloe Pura

 

4.  Exfoliator

Aloe Vera gel works great as an exfoliator (homemade scrub) and it’s so easy! Just mix the gel with brown sugar (brown sugar is rough and works better as a scrub than normal sugar). Be careful not to exfoliate too much though, 2 times a week is all your face needs.

5. Skin brightener

Aloe Vera gel is often used as a skin brightener in the South-Asian countries. It might not be as effective as lemon juice but it’s way less damaging, which is exactly what you need if you want to brighten scars or blemishes on your face.  All you have to do is apply the gel to your flaws every night (or morning too, if you’re not going to wear make-up) and stay consistent for a few weeks to see a significant change.

6. Anti-Aging

If you’ve ever applied Aloe Vera on your face or body, you’ll know that it tightens after a few minutes. But how does that fight aging? Aloe Vera helps to rebuild collagen (more of it and faster) which controls the aging process of your skin. Aloe Vera also contains vitamin E which will keep your skin looking youthful and prevent premature signs of aging. Some even claim that Aloe Vera works better than anti-aging products…

Aloe Vera moisturizer

7. Overnight Mask

Because of its soothing and moisturizing ingredients, Aloe Vera gel works great as an overnight mask. The gel will significantly reduce redness and scars and you’ll wake up with a healthy, glowing skin. Isn’t that what we all want? 

8. Moisturizer

Many models swear by Aloe Vera as their go-to moisturizer. The gel increases the water content in your skin and leaves it hydrated and non-greasy. This is perfect for people with an oily or acne-prone skin.



And that was it! I hope this post convinced you that Aloe Vera should be a part of your skincare routine, because you’re missing out on some great benefits! Let me know in the comments if you’ve ever tried Aloe Vera on your face and how you experienced it.

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Note:

  • Using Aloe Vera on your skin is safe, but do not take it internally!
  • If you’re considering to buy Aloe Vera gel, make sure you buy it in an actual certificated drugstore/ health store instead of on some strange online webshop (for your own health!) 

 

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#7 Products You Shouldn’t Be Putting on Your Face

These days it’s completely normal to follow up advice some stranger on the internet gives you. For some reason, we automatically think that whatever sounds right, must be right. There are a million skin care DIY’s, tips and tricks out there, telling you how to take care of your skin. But are they really all safe?

For example, you’re desperately looking for ways to lighten your skin tone and you find this professional looking blog. It says that you should apply pure lemon juice on your face, every morning and night. The writer claims that you’ll see a difference within 4 weeks of consistent applying. There are so many people who won’t doubt the advice and start putting lemon juice directly to their face that same night, without realizing how much they’re damaging their face.

In this post I’ll go through some products you should never put on your face, no matter who says it. You’ll have to deal with your precious skin for your entire life so better take good care of it, right?

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1. Toothpaste

To be honest, applying toothpaste on your face isn’t that harmful at all. Many kinds of toothpaste contain antibacterial ingredients, which is why lots of people use it as an acne-remedy. The thing is, when we feel it burning, we think it’s working. Don’t get me wrong, toothpaste works great against acne but don’t get too excited and apply it 5 times a day. Keep it on once every other day, because it will irritate and dry out your skin which will increase your acne or cause scars.

2. Lemon juice

Lemon juice is known as a skin brightener for ages, because of the citric acid. There are a lot of bloggers out there telling you to mix lemon juice with honey or baking soda and use it as a face mask, and you would happily do it. But the thing you don’t know is that lemon juice is highly acidic which can permanently damage your skin (e.g. changing your skin’s natural pH-balance). If you still want to use lemon juice on your face, make sure you mix it with water ( 50% water and 50% lemon juice).

3. Apple cider vinegar (ACV)

Apple cider vinegar is believed to dry out acne without leaving any scars, which is true because ACV contains acetic acid. But just like lemon juice, using pure ACV will burn and irritate your skin. There’s no harm in using it, as long as you mix it with water (50% water and 50% apple cider vinegar). 

Tip: Make sure your apple cider vinegar isn’t too old. As it grows old, the water leaves the vinegar which makes it stronger and more harmful to your face.

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4. Baking Soda

You’ll find many beauty bloggers and experts talking about baking soda scrubs and how great it works for your skin. Baking soda is indeed an effective skin brightener but you don’t wanna use it directly on your face. It contains a high alkaline level which will mess with your face’s natural pH balance. Dermatologists recommend using baking soda with your regular face cleanser or coconut oil, to create your own scrub. (Lots of scrubbing and exfoliating is not supported by dermatologists, scrubbing once a week is all your face need.)

5. Cleansing brush

Electric cleansing brushes (e.g. Clarisonic) are really popular these days. They thoroughly cleanse and scrub your face at the same time, but everyday usage of the cleansing brush is discouraged by dermatologists. Everyday usage can cause irritation and roughly open pores which will result in acne flares and other skin problems. Try using your the cleansing brush every 2 or 3 days to avoid damaging your skin.

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6. Mayonnaise

Mayonnaise works great for hair but don’t consider putting it on your face. Just like lemon juice and vinegar, mayonnaise is highly acidic. It will result in clogging your pores, causing skin irritations. If you still want to use mayonnaise in your beauty routine, make sure to use it on your dry hair or scalp. Just keep it away from your cheeks. 

7. Hot water

Your skin needs moisturizing, which is created by the top layer of your face. Many people like to use hot water on their skin because it eliminates bacterias but it will also strip away the protective layer and the natural oils on your face. Always remember to wash your face with lukewarm (or even cold) water.

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Source



 

I hope this post made you more aware that you shouldn’t put everything on your face, not even when your favorite blogger says so. I think the most important tip here is: When you’re about to use a highly acidic product like vinegar or lemon juice, always mix it with water. 

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#5 Places to Successfully Promote Your Blog (Tips + Tricks)

Like I mentioned in one of my last posts, traffic is one of the most important things when you’re a blogger. There are so many ways to increase your blog traffic, but the simplest one is to promote your blog and yourself: it’s more sensible to let readers associate your name with your blog (unless you’d rather stay anonymous, obviously). Today I’ll tell you about a few ways to promote your blog and how to do this. You’re probably familiar with most of them, but are you really using them to the fullest?

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1. Social Media

This isn’t only the most obvious one,  but also the most important one. In the US only, an estimated 185 million people are active on social media. Also, 9 in 10 companies worldwide are using social media to interact with customers and promote themselves. Research shows that there were 2,46 billion social media users active in 2017, and people are expecting a total of 3 billion users in 2021. In short, why would you not promote your blog on social media? It’s the way to reach whoever you want to reach. (Source)

A lot of us are currently using Instagram to upload selfies, holiday pictures, party pictures or stalk our “friends”, but this exact same platform could be used for business purposes. If you’re ready to let people know you own a blog, consider putting the link in your Instagram bio. Believe me, it will attract dozens of viewers on a daily base which will make you realize how much people stalk your Instagram…

Another way is creating a Facebook page for your blog, this is also great if your blog has multiple writers. A Facebook page is the way to connect with your readers in a more personal way and keep them up-to-date.

If your blog is all about photographing or any other kind of art, you should definitely start promoting on Tumblr. This might also be your place to be for inspiration!

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2. StumbleUpon

I used StumbleUpon a lot when I started getting more serious with my blog, it’s the easiest way to discover new and interesting websites, photos and videos across the web. It’s also your chance to put your website/blog posts on there and get noticed!

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3. Tell people about it (Word-of-Mouth)

One of the most effective ways to create awareness under your target-audience is to talk to them. Tell your friends, family or acquaintances about your blog and ask them to check it out. For example, you can ask an uncle who’s great in English to check out your grammar. This way the people around you will know about your blog and there’s a big chance they’ll tell other people about it too and that is exactly what you want!

Talking Women TCOADG

4. Pinterest

I have written an entire article about how to get the most out of Pinterest, which you can find here. Pinterest is full of possibilities to design your life. Discover recipes, healthcare, skincare and self-care ideas, style inspiration, blog post ideas, projects for your home, DIYs and tips and tricks you should definitely try. Find everyday ideas you love, what to make for dinner, what to put on your walls, what to wear and more ideas for every part of your life.

5. LinkedIn

LinkedIn is the place to find and make business connections, expand your business community and share your business-related experiences. If you want to promote yourself or get your blog to a higher and more professional level, this is exactly what you need.


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How to Efficiently Use Pinterest to Increase Blog Traffic (Beginner’s Guide)

Succesful bloggers aren’t always full-time bloggers. They just spend their time wisely. One of the things they always do is create content for their readers, not for themselves. Besides creating new content, these bloggers are spending hours on creating awareness and eventually gain more blog traffic. If you’re new to blogging, you might find it hard to promote your blog, create content and increase your blog traffic at the same time. One of the most effective ways to do this is using Pinterest. Obviously, anyone can use Pinterest, but are you really getting the most out of it? In this post I’ll explain how to effectively use Pinterest to increase blog traffic.

How To Use Pinterest To Increase Blog Traffic TCOADG

1. Treat Pinterest like any other social media

A lot of people see Pinterest as the place to promote yourself or your blog, and that’s entirely right. However, Pinterest is much more than that. Start using Pinterest like any other social media account: scroll through your feed and pin whatever interests you. Check out other pinners and their boards, and get inspired. You just have to keep in mind that Pinterest is social media platform and when it comes to online marketing-promotion, it works pretty much the same.

2. Minimum of 5 pins a day

Facebook and Instagram have likes. Twitter has retweets. Pinterest has pins. Try to reach a minimum of 5 pins a day, this way you’re motivated to stay active and create awareness, which is exactly what you need!
The best way to promote your blog post is by sharing it on Pinterest, and you could even re-pin it after a while. Just make sure you don’t pin it 5 times in 5 minutes because really, you’re gonna annoy the hell out of your followers.

Monthly Viewers on Pinterest TCOADG

3. Regularly refresh boards

Just like your blog content, your pins stay on your boards forever. Make sure that most of your pins (and blog content) are evergreen content, which means that it will always stay relevant or interesting to the readers.  So it wouldn’t be a bad idea to check out the content of your boards every once in a while. Ask yourself these questions while going over your board-check:

  • Is every pin placed in the right board? Re-pin and delete!
  • Check out the pins you created yourself, are all the sources still working?
  • Could you make your pins more attractive by changing the caption?
  • Do you still use all your boards? Are there any irrelevant ones? If so, you don’t have to delete them. Consider putting some boards on private.

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4. Make everything on your blog pinnable

This is easier for people with a self-hosted blog, because you can edit and adjust your content by yourself. If your blog is self-hosted, make sure that your readers can pin all the pictures on your blog onto Pinterest. You’re really gonna need this feature if you want to get the best out of Pinterest.

Tip: If you’re gonna make all the pictures on your blog pinnable, make sure they’re your own pictures. Don’t just find an aesthetic picture on Google and let people pin it as if it’s yours because that wouldn’t be fair to anyone, right?

5. Pinterest business account

This might be the easiest but most important thing yet. If you already have a Pinterest account, turn it into a business account for free (settings). This way you’ll be able to keep track of your Pinterest analytics which can come in handy when you want to increase your blog traffic.

If you have a self-hosted blog, you can also connect your website to Pinterest. You’ll be able to see what people are saving from your domain and you’ll know how all your content is doing on Pinterest, not just the pins you’ve saved to your profile. It’s free so it’s definitely worth checking out!

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I hope these 5 tips will help you out with increasing your blog traffic, because really, Pinterest is the way to go. How active are you on Pinterest? Comment below!

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Frosted Peach

Frosted Peach
Calvin klein tee
€51 – topshop.com

WithChic high rise pants
€16 – withchic.com

Greek sandals
€32 – dsw.com

Strathberry genuine leather tote
€370 – strathberry.com

Peach jewelry
€22 – behandpicked.com

Circle stud earrings
€3,85 – claires.com

Lipstick
nordstrom.com

My #8 Favorite Skincare Products

Over the past few years, I’ve started to realize how important it is to take good care of your skin. If you’re even a little concerned about your physical appearance, you’ll know that a healthy skin appears full, vibrant and glowing. Poor skincare habits,  however, can lead to acne, dry patches and early signs of aging (wrinkles and fine lines).

In this post, I’ll be sharing my 8 favorite skincare products with you guys! Some of these products aren’t available in all countries but there are plenty of other alternatives/ brands out there.

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1. Clinique Take The Day Off makeup-remover

The first thing I do after a long day, is taking off my eye- and lip makeup. I’m using the Clinique Take The Day Off makeup-remover which removes any (waterproof) makeup in one swipe (with a cotton pad/ball).

The Take The Day Off makeup-remover is one of Clinique’s best-selling products at the moment, but I do think there are lot more alternative make-up removers available in drugstores, which will work just as effective.

Size: 30ml

Price: €9,95

Alternative: Garnier Skinactive Micellar Cleansing Water
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2. Fresh Face Carbon cleanser

I’ve only been using this carbon cleanser for only a few weeks but I’m loving it already. I bought this cleanser during my trip to Zaragoza but it appears that Fresh Face is a Spanish brand and it’s not available outside Spain. But if you’re planning on visiting Spain anytime soon, I definitely recommend visiting Primor. This is the place to be for the best and cheapest high-end duplicates, Japanese face masks and many more must-haves.

Price: €2,99

Alternative: Bioré Deap Pore Charcoal Cleanser

 

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3. Sentiments Organic rosewater

Rosewater is a holy-grail when it comes to skincare. It works like a miracle and I’d recommend it to anyone. Just make sure that the rosewater you’re using is organic/100% natural and not mixed. I’m using it as a toner but you could also use it as a facial cleanser or face mist, or you could add a few drops of rosewater to your other skincare products.

Rosewater has anti-inflammatory ingredients which do wonders for an acne-prone and irritated skin. The ingredients are hydrating and soothing, which is exactly what your face needs! I bought this bottle in Suriname for SRD 10 (€1), but it’s available at any drugstore and maybe even at your local grocery store (don’t forget to check the ingredients though).

Price: SRD 10 (€1)

Alternative: Burt’s Bees Rosewater Toner

 

RoseWater

4. Nivea Cellular Radiance night serum

I’ve been using this night serum for nearly a year now and it works amazing. I apply this serum every morning and evening because it makes my face feel smooth and significantly reduces spots. The serum also reduces wrinkles and evens out my skin tone.

Price: €9,50

Alternative: Argan Oil Night Repair Serum 

 

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5. Clinique Custom Repair moisturizer

I bought the travel-sized version (15ml) of this moisturizer about two months ago and I loved it, so I had to buy the original version. I can see how this moisturizer improved my skin condition by focusing on my flaws and pores. This moisturizer is de-aging and has SPF 15.

Size: 30ml

Price: €42

Alternative: Yes To Blueberries Age Refresh Daily Repairing Moisturizer

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6. Bio-oil

This is the must-have oil if you have any stretch marks or (acne) scars you want to get rid of. Apply the oil on the affected areas (apply with a q-tip, if possible), do this every morning and evening and you’ll see the appearance fade within 2 to 3 months. Just remember that this oil will not make your scars entirely disappearIt takes time but really, what’s the harm?

Size: 60ml

Price: €9,50

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7. Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Skin Protectant Cream

I got the Elizabeth Arden 8 Hour Skin Protectant for €20 in Spain. Beauty bloggers and influencers have been recommending this “legendary formula” cream for years but I never thought it’d be worth trying. Now I’ve tried it for a month and I’m loving what it does to my skin. Some people dislike the medical smell but to be honest, it’s not that disturbing to me. The structure of the cream is similar petroleum jelly (which it is for 50%), just a little less sticky and greasy. One of the reasons I love this cream is its multiple uses (see description below). Can you believe this cream has actually won several awards? 

Size: 50ml

Price: €20

Alternative: Eucerin Aquaphor Soothing Skin Balm

 

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8. Tony Moly Bubble Mask

Last but not least, the Tony Moly bubble mask which I bought at Sephora. I bought this mask for €15 and although it comes in an incredibly cute package, I think it’s a little overpriced.

Bubble masks are originally from Korea and deep cleanse your face. The mask removes excess oil and opens clogged pores. Bubble masks are also great for dealing with blackheads and besides, they make you look like you have a huge cloud on your face.

Price: €15

Alternative: Elizavecca Milky Piggy Carbonated Bubble Clay Mask

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And that’s it, those were my favorite skincare products, I hope you liked this post! A review of the Elizabeth Arden’s 8 Hour Skin Protectant and the Clinique Custom Repair moisturizer will be published soon! What’s your favorite skincare product?

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