Fool Proof Ways to Tone for Summer

It’s that time of year again when we all want to tone our bodies for summer and get leaaannnnn. If there’s one appearance goal that I have it would definitely be to tone my body and cut down on stubborn fat. It’s easier said than done, but with consistence and dedication it is definitely possibly. Here are a few ways that help me to tone my body for summer!

#1 Reduce Your Calorie Intake

The body needs to be in a calorie deficit in order to truly burn fat cells on its own. You can do this by eating and drinking less calories than you burn off in a day. When you burn more calories a day than you’re eating or drinking, your body will begin to shrink fat cells for energy!

The best way to figure out how many calories you should eat/drink a day is to use a fitness app or website. It’s all based on your gender, age, weight and height so they’re pretty accurate. Once you know your target calorie range, subtract 500-1000 calories a day, to get into that calorie deficit.

#2 Cardio, cardio, cardio!

This is an easy one to understand. Cardiovascular activity simply burns calories! Whether you’re a runner, swimmer or love to skip rope, any type of cardio daily will help you tone for summer. This is especially important if you do regular strength training in the gym or at classes.

#3 Drink tons of water!

Thousands of calories are consumed through sugary or alcoholic drinks. Water is your best friend this summer girl! Drinking water, at least 2L a day, keeps you hydrated, flushes out toxins and tightens the skin. When you do want a sweet drink or alcoholic beverage, make sure you drink lots of water at the same time so your body doesn’t retain a lot of water.

#4 Eat your greens and fruits!

If you’re in a calorie deficit, you’re going to need energy from something. Try to increase your vegetable and fruit intake daily so that you’re getting all of the nutrients and vitamins your body needs. Pass on the potatoes and get the carrots πŸ˜›

#5 Stay Consistent

One of the easiest ways to stay consistent is by planning out at least one or two meals a day. For example, I eat the same thing for breakfast every day! Two eggs and a sausage patty right after my workout provide the protein I need to stay strong and grow muscle.

I hope these ways help you to tone your own body for summer! If you have any tips of your own feel free to share them in the comments πŸ™‚

xx,

Haley

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The Best Apps for Editing Instagram Stories

Almost every day I get asked which apps I use to edit my Instagram stories so I thought a full post on this topic would be helpful. Instagram stories have become more than just a raw sneak peak into our everyday lives and more of another way to show our creative side. Apps come in handy when we’re trying to express ourselves digitally and there are a few that I’m constantly using. Whether it’s to showcase a new post that I’ve put up or simply share a review of a product, these apps provide multiple ways to share this with my audience.

My aesthetic is very much minimal, neutral and refined so the apps that I use check off all these boxes, but they also have more edgy and bold options too! Below are my top three apps for editing IG stories.


#1 Unfold

This is the OG editing app for stories (IMO) and almost everybody knows of this one now. They have multiple styles of stories that you can choose from, from look-alike Polaroids to digital search bars, there’s something for everyone.

What I really love about this app is that you can customize the font, size and colour of text and background. It makes it super easy to personalize what you post.

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#2 StoryLuxe

I recently started using this app and I love it because of the huge variety of templates it has. Most of the StoryLuxe templates look like film reels, Polaroids and other camera-like images but there are also other options like floral backgrounds, neon and plain black and white designs. This app also allows you to choose from a story size downloadable image or an IG size image so you can use this for IG posts as well!

#3 Storio

This is another app that I only recently started using but I love it because there are more unique story templates available. My favourite one is the “Adele” template package, however it wasn’t free (just a heads up in case you want it as well). A lot of the template packages on here cost something (less than $5) but come with 10-14 different templates. If you’re looking for more unique templates then this app is definitely a great option, just be prepared to spend a little coin!

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If you have any favourite editing apps for IG Stories I would love to hear them! Comment below with your faves πŸ™‚ I hope this post was helpful for those of you searching for good editing apps!

xoxo,

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7 Ways to Start Off the New Year Right

As clichΓ© as it sounds, the New Year is certainly the right time to start working on those things you said you’d do a while back…and never did. It’s the best time to start fresh and focus on what’s really important in your life.

You probably already have a list of “goals for 2019” and that’s always a good thing, but you should definitely have a game plan as well! After all, you do want to check off those goals right?

Think of the new year as a new day. You don’t want to start your day off slowly and without a task-list! It’s always best to start the day with a clear mind, a clean workspace and a task list that will keep you going! So that’s what this post will help you do to start off 2019 the right way πŸ™‚


#1 Clean up your home/workspace/bedroom.

Clutter is not welcome in 2019! Get rid of old papers, unwanted clothing, shoes and random items around your home and workspace.

#2 Get your budget straightened out.

Figure out and finalize your weekly and monthly budget! You’ll step into 2019 prepared and ready to take on those bank statements.

#3 Create a workout schedule.

If one of your goals is to live a healthier lifestyle or workout more often, be specific and make a proper schedule so it actually happens. Make sure you create your workout schedule before the New Year starts. This will prevent you from saying “I’ll start tomorrow”, “I’ll start next week”, and so on.

#4 Detox.

Another part of living a healthy lifestyle is eating well. Detoxing right before or during the start of the New Year will get you in the right mindset to better your eating habits. This could be a one week diet cutting out sugar and processed foods, or it could even be a juice cleanse!

#5 Do a yearly review.

This one is a little time consuming but will leave you feeling confident about your new year goals. Review the past year and figure out what worked and didn’t work for you, socially, personally, health-wise, work-wise, etc. Ask yourself some of these questions:

Why didn’t I reach (x) goal last year?

What did I cut out that made me happier?

How did I improve my health?

What went well for me last year?

How did I improve my relationships?

#6 Finish what you started.

I feel like we all have a to-do list in the back of our mind that never actually gets checked off. If you’ve got one of these and the tasks can be completed within one day or maybe even a few hours, dedicate one full day to them. These tasks are usually centered around the following:

  • house chores
  • repairs (home, clothing, shoes)
  • car (oil change, brake check, clean)
  • purge/donate unwanted items

#7 Create a list of daily habits.

Think of a few small tasks that you want to accomplish each day and keep the list handy. It could be drinking 2L of water per day, working out for 30 minutes, or even praying for 10 minutes every morning!


How will you be starting 2019 off right? What are some of your goals for the New Year?

xoxo,

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How to Give Back This Christmas

Christmas is all about love and although there are many different things going on during the holidays, giving back should definitely be on your bucket list. Not everyone is as fortunate to be surrounded by loved ones, receive gifts or even have a Christmas meal around this time of year. Giving back is a wonderful way to spread happiness and positivity to others. So I’ve put together a list of ways that you can give back within your local communities this season.

There are so many ways to give back and they’re not always right in front of your eyes. It’s the lonely seniors waiting for visitors on Christmas Eve or a child waking up to no presents on Christmas morning that are often overlooked. Through these ways of giving back, we can share some Christmas joy with them this year.

  1. Bake treats for your neighbours or a local shelter. I always love to bake at Christmas time because it feels extra special. Baking for a local soup kitchen or shelter will feed hungry people and hopefully give them that warm and fuzzy feeling when they see homemade cookies and treats!
  2. Donate money to your local women’s shelters or for youth in need. Do a bit of research before you choose the charity you donate to. Try to choose one that really resonates with you. Maybe you know a few youth that are currently struggling, or a single mother who needs a bit of help. Don’t just donate what you can though. Service is about sacrifice, so try giving a little more than what’s in your budget.
  3. Visit your local seniors homes. Every year my family visits the seniors home that my great grandmother resided in. We sing carols and dance with the seniors and the smiles on their faces are what make it all worth it. Many seniors are left alone during the holidays and many of them don’t actually have family to visit with. Stay a while, have a cup of tea and get to know some of the seniors in your community. Maybe you’ll even spark a friendship πŸ™‚
  4. Volunteer at a soup kitchen. If you really want to get hands on this holiday season, contact a local soup kitchen and ask when the best time is for you to visit and help serve the hungry.
  5. Donate toys and clothing. Find a local charity that gives back to less fortunate women, children and families and donate a box of new (or even gently used) clothing and toys.
  6. Coordinate a food drive in your neighbourhood. Almost everyone has canned food in their home. Walk or drive around your neighbourhood collecting canned food! There’s probably more than one organization in your community that accepts these food donations and distributes them over the holiday season.
  7. Visit children in the hospital. So many children spend their holidays in the hospital and don’t get the Christmas experiences that they deserve. It’s easy to visit your local hospital and bring a few toys (new or used) down to the children’s wing. Maybe bring a couple board games and play with them too!

For my local Vancouverites, below is a list of local charities and organizations that you can help out this season:

Greater Vancouver Food Bank

Blanket BC

Union Gospel Mission

Covenant House

Lower Mainland Christmas Bureau

How do you give back during the holidays?

xoxo,

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How to Look Cute on a Lazy Day

Sometimes you just don’t want to get out of bed in the morning, and that’s okay. If you’re having a lazy day, there’s still hope for looking cute πŸ˜‰

Believe it or not there are ways to look cute without having to put too much effort in and today I’m going to share them with you! Everyone needs a little inspiration from time to time, so take these tips and use them the next time you’re feeling tired.


1. Joggers VS. Sweats

Baggy sweats look cute on some girls, but they’re usually not socially acceptable when you’re going out, so opt for a pair of joggers instead. These babies are comfy AND cute at the same time. They’re also super easy to style, especially if you have them in a neutral colour (black, white, grey, brown).

2. Braids

If you’re not up for styling your hair, a braid is a cute and quick alternative. I personally don’t know how to french braid but even a regular braid looks better than undone locks.

3. Throw on a hat!

If you’re really not up for styling your hair, throw on a hat! A ball cap looks cute (as long as it’s in good condition) and a toque works just as well. If you’re wearing a comfy casual outfit, either of these two hats will make you look just a little more put together.

4. Jackets

Don’t underestimate the power of a jacket! Even if you’re wearing joggers or leggings, a jacket adds something unique to your outfit. Try layering a hoodie and a leather jacket with a pair of joggers for a cute off duty look.

5. Loafers

Instead of socks and slides or your torn up sneakers, try wearing a pair of slip on loafers with your outfit. Whether it’s leggings or joggers that you have on, a pair of loafers are comfy, easy to slip on and they’re cute!

How do you look cute on your laziest days? πŸ˜‰

xoxo,

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15 Ways to Look & Feel Put Together

We all have those days that we just feel blah, but thankfully there are a few tricks that can actually help us look and feel put together. They’re easy, quick and pretty simple I think!

Whether it’s your mood or appearance, these tips will help you to look your best, and then hopefully feel your best! Keep reading to find out what they are…

  1. Wash your hair. Everyone knows that a freshly washed head of hair makes the world of a difference in your appearance!
  2. Wear black. No matter what the occasion, wearing black makes you look put together! If you’re not into black though, you can certainly wear a different monochrome outfit πŸ˜›
  3. Use a lint roller. Lint-free clothing screams “I’ve got this”. It’s a quick clothing fix so why not do it before you run out the door!
  4. Put on some mascara. If you’re looking tired, mascara can do wonders for your face. A natural makeup look really makes a difference!
  5. Shave. This is pretty self-explanatory… who doesn’t feel awesome after they shave their legs?!
  6. Be mindful of your eating throughout the day. Eat good, feel good.
  7. Wake up early. Ever since I started waking up early everyday I’ve seen a huge difference in my mood throughout the day. Waking up early gets you on the right track for the day and you’ll feel good πŸ™‚
  8. Put on some perfume. Spray some on, thank me later.
  9. Write out a to-do list. Stay on track with your productivity and feel good about what you’re doing throughout the day!
  10. Listen to some up-beat music. Nothing is better than a little dance sesh!
  11. Chew some gum. Does this really need an explanation? What beats fresh breath?
  12. Do a five minute breathing meditation. Feeling blah? A quick meditation will immediately refresh your mind.
  13. Get dressed as soon as you wake up. Take action as soon as you jump out of bed!
  14. Have a 30 minute workout. A workout has been proven to increase positivity and productivity.
  15. Put on a pair of earrings. Going out but still feeling blah? Throw on a pair of earrings or other jewellery. Usually when you look good, you feel good.

If you have any other tips on how to look and feel put together, feel free to share them below!

xoxo,

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How to Wear a Beret With Short Hair

I’ve heard a lot of women complain about not being able to wear berets because of their short hair. Now that I’ve chopped mine off and had the chance to try on a few hats, I’ve figured out what the best ways are to wear a beret with short locks.

The problem that usually arises when hats are tried on with short hair is the ears sticking out! Fortunately there are ways around this little annoyance πŸ˜‰ Keep reading to find out how you can prevent elf ears in your beret!

#1 Behind the Ear

One of the chicest ways to wear a beret is with one side of hair behind your ear. This allows you to pull the beret a little lower down on the other side, thus covering your other ear!

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#2 Slouched to One Side

If you don’t want to expose your ears, try styling the beret off to the side! You’ll be warm and stylish πŸ™‚

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#3 Pulled Back

This may not work for super short bobs, but if you’re able to pull your hair back into a little ponytail or bun, do it! This is a really sleek look and makes the beret very easy to put on!

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How do you style your beret?

xoxo,

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5 Ways to Pose for the ‘Gram

Are you stuck for poses? Seeking inspiration for your weekly Instagram photos? Look no further, here are five different poses that you can use for your #OOTDs πŸ˜‰

#1 Look Back At It

This is a great pose for showing off the backside of your outfit or any heels that you might be wearing!

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#2 The Walk By

Show a little attitude by doing a walk by photo! You can capture this on an iPhone or a professional camera by completing a burst photo of you walking.

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#3 The Knee Pop

This pose looks great close up or far away. I personally love using this pose for a details shot.

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#4 Look Afar

So you don’t want to look straight into the camera huh…why don’t you try looking away! Your photo will turn out with a laid-back and effortless look.

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#5 Hand to Hip

This pose is a little more flirty and goes great with a smile. I love this pose while wearing a dress or skirt because it helps to flare out the bottom a little bit!

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What’s your favourite pose? πŸ™‚

xoxo,

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5 Easy Ways to Save Your Money

It might be a little early to say this but….the holidays are only a few weeks away which means a lot of us are starting to save for gifts, events and other festivity expenses. That’s why today I’m going to share my saving tips! Even though they may be small they certainly make a difference when you add it all up.

I recently read “Less: A Visual Guide to Minimalism” and it turned me in a different direction, more specifically, away from spending and consuming so much during my day to day life. This book helped me to realize that if you’re truly spending on and consuming the right things, there’s really no need to be constantly opening your wallet. This is relevant to basically everything you spend on, from food to clothing, there are tons of ways you can save your dollars.

Here are some of the easy ways that I save money!

  1. Learn how to DIY. As a girl who focuses a lot on beauty and takes a lot of photos, I used to spend quite a bit on waxing and threading my face. For over a year now I’ve been threading my eyebrows and upper lip myself. Thread is dirt cheap and the process isn’t hard to learn (find my tutorial here). This will save you a few bucks a month especially if you find yourself visiting the salon quite often. It can also be applied to your nails! Get your own gel machine and polishes, I guarantee it’ll be cheaper than the salon.
  2. Invest in a good coffee machine. Why do we always choose Starbucks over a home-made cup of coffee in the morning? It’s probably because the home-made stuff isn’t as good, but what if it could be? If you spend a little more ONCE on a coffee machine that allows you to make lattes that you love, you won’t feel the need to spend $$$ every day at your local cafe. After all, buying coffee grounds once a month or even once every two months will definitely end up saving you money.
  3. Use GasBuddy. If you’ve got a car, you know how expensive it can get to be driving around all the time. Be smart about where and when you gas up! It’s as easy as using an app, seriously. GasBuddy compares the prices at your local gas stations, so you know where to go to save some mula!
  4. Don’t walk into a mall or store without a need. Shopping used to be a really bad habit of mine because I would go out simply to “look around” and FIND something that I wanted. I’ve learned now that this is super dangerous and results in you spending hundreds every month on unnecessary sh*t. My rule now is, if you don’t NEED an item in the store, don’t walk in. You’d be surprised at how much you’ll save.
  5. Sell your pre-loved items. For as long as I can remember, I’ve been selling my used clothing, home decor, accessories and more. Why not get a little money back from the things you spent your coin on?! Even if you’re not making a profit, it all adds up and you won’t feel so bad purging πŸ˜‰

There are many other small ways that I save my money, but these ones are my mains. If you’ve got any tips of your own please share them! πŸ™‚

xoxo,

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Tips on Working from Home

Find out how to make the most out of working from home!

As someone who is constantly working from home, I’ve been able to figure out how to make the most out of my day. Most people think it’s working in your pjs from bed all day, but that’s definitely not the case. For me, a lot of thought is put into working from home because it’s THAT easy to curl right back up in bed.

I’ve tried sitting in bed all day working to get my task list checked off, and let me tell you now, it doesn’t work. I’ve also tried sleeping in and working later, but that wasn’t ideal either. In order to get my work done I need to wake up earlier, start my morning off with a boost of energy and tackle a to-do list one by one. Here are the ways that I get all of my work done at home.

Wake Up Early

This might mean something different to you, depending on when you usually get up, but for me it means 8 to 8:30am. I find that setting my alarm even an hour later than this (9am) prevents me from getting up right away. Being up with the rest of my household at 8am encourages me to make my bed, change my clothes and start the day.

Workout Right Away

I used to convince myself I couldn’t do this because I’d wake up hungry, too tired, etc, etc. However those were excuses and I’m glad I’ve put an end to them because working out as soon as I’m awake gets my blood flowing and helps me be more productive. Once the workout is over I can focus the rest of my day on what’s important. It doesn’t need to be a long workout, even 20-30 minutes will do you good!

Shower

If you workout you should probably shower too, but this is a win-win situation. If your sweat sesh didn’t wake you up, then a shower surely will! You’ll also be ready for the day in case you need to go out.

Prepare a Checklist

I find that physically writing down my to-do list the evening before really helps me to get things done the next day. Whether it’s on my whiteboard or a notebook, being able to prioritize and actually check things off throughout the day allows me to get more done. I also write down ideal times for getting things done, see my example below.

8am – wake up, workout, shower

9am – emails

10am – content creation for (brand)

Make Your Own Schedule

Every work shift has a start and an end time, so I try my best to do that for my own schedule too. If I’m waking up at 8am, having a workout, lunch break or running errands, then I’ll end my day around 5-6pm. However, in this industry your work is going on 24/7, so you just need to know when to stop answering your emails πŸ˜‰ Knowing how to do this comes in handy when you have family or significant-other time planned.

I hope these tips help you get more done while working at home! If you have any other suggestions for increased productivity and organization please share them in a comment below! πŸ™‚

xoxo,