The Mirror Does Not Define You

The Mirror Does Not Define You

Beauty goes beyond a reflection.
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Do you look in the mirror and love what you see every day? You should. However, I am 99 percent positive that the majority of us don’t.

See, when I glance at the figure in the mirror, it goes a little like this:

Fat, acne, big nose, more fat, large face, crooked smile, the continuing of the fat saga, and so on.

Maybe your mirror doesn’t relay these things back to you. Maybe, instead, it’s spider veins, a long neck, moles, freckled cheeks, muffin top, bony hands, or anything else for that matter.

I know there are days for all of us that I refer to as “confidence highs” where we do admire some of our better features. However, I am almost certain that I am not the only one who has a hard time finding those admirable qualities on a normal day.

Why do we have this problem?

In a given day, I sometimes receive compliments on my eye color, my hair or my fashion sense. I get told that I am beautiful, and I know when I look in that mirror I am highly over reacting. We spend the most time with ourselves, so of course we are going to notice our flaws more frequently than others. Still, we shouldn’t rid ourselves of the beauty that is instilled in us.

Also, when you look in the mirror, physicality shouldn’t be what you see. You should see a smile that shows your happiness, hands that help others in need, feet that allow you to walk and explore other beauty on this Earth, and more than that, you should see inside you. Regardless of what anyone else says, inward beauty far exceeds outward beauty. I know that is hard to believe in today’s time, but it is so true!

So to anyone who is looking in that mirror today, seeing a reflection they wish wasn’t theirs, be proud of it instead. Wear it with pride and say to yourself, “you know what, I’ve got some pretty great things to offer. Thank you, God, for the person you have made me.”

I promise you are all beautiful.

“Nothing makes a woman more beautiful than the belief that she is beautiful.” –Sophia Loren
Cover Image Credit: Demi Agresta

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3 Reasons Why Step Dads Are Super Dads

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I often hear a lot of people complaining about their step-parents and wondering why they think that they have any authority over them. Although I know that everyone has different situations, I will be the first to admit that I am beyond blessed to have a step dad. Yep, I said it. My life wouldn't be the same that it is not without him in it. Let me tell you why I think step dads are the greatest things since sliced bread.

1. They will do anything for you, literally.

My stepdad has done any and every thing for me. From when I was little until now. He was and still is my go-to. If I was hungry, he would get me food. If something was broken, he would fix it. If I wanted something, he would normally always find a way to get it. He didn't spoil me (just sometimes), but he would make sure that I was always taken care of.

SEE ALSO: The Thank You That Step-Parents Deserve

2. Life lessons.

Yup, the tough one. My stepdad has taught me things that I would have never figured out on my own. He has stood beside me through every mistake. He has been there to pick me up when I am down. My stepdad is like the book of knowledge: crazy hormonal teenage edition. Boy problems? He would probably make me feel better. He just always seemed to know what to say. I think that the most important lesson that I have learned from my stepdad is: to never give up. My stepdad has been through three cycles of leukemia. He is now in remission, yay!! But, I never heard him complain. I never heard him worry and I never saw him feeling sorry for himself. Through you, I found strength.

3. He loved me as his own.

The big one, the one that may seem impossible to some step parents. My stepdad is not actually my stepdad, but rather my dad. I will never have enough words to explain how grateful I am for this man, which is why I am attempting to write this right now. It takes a special kind of human to love another as if they are their own. There had never been times where I didn't think that my dad wouldn't be there for me. It was like I always knew he would be. He introduces me as his daughter, and he is my dad. I wouldn't have it any other way. You were able to show me what family is.

So, dad... thanks. Thanks for being you. Thanks for being awesome. Thanks for being strong. Thanks for loving me. Thanks for loving my mom. Thanks for giving me a wonderful little sister. Thanks for being someone that I can count on. Thanks for being my dad.

I love you!

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12 Tips Before Getting Your First Eyelash Extensions

I know you are in the middle of making your appointment, but here are a few pointers.

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If you are like me, you are super hesitant about trying new things in the beauty realm. I have finally tried lash extensions and can easily say I am obsessed. 10/10 recommend! If you are considering getting yours done, here are a few pointers!

1. Shower before your appointment.

This seems logical, but I wasn't aware. Luckily, I did shower before my appointment and wasn't shocked when my lash tech said, "don't get them wet for 24 hours."

2. Not all extensions are over the top. There are lash extensions for EVERYONE. 

I was super worried my lashes were going to be crazy over the top and I would look crazy during my runs. I asked my lash tech and she gave me a set of natural lashes. You get to pick the style of lashes you want! You can get them for fuller volume or just a natural look. There is a style of lashes for everyone!

3. Yes, they are SO much better than mascara and strip lashes.

I was already a firm hater of mascara, so lash extensions didn't have to work hard to win me over. As for strip lashes, I use to love putting them on for a night out or date night. It seemed as if a makeup look was not complete without them. Now, I wear less makeup on a night out because I feel as if my lashes really just pull the simplest of looks together.

4. Not all lash techs will charge you an arm and a leg.

One of my favorite nail salons offers lash extensions, STARTING at $100. Luckily, if you live near a college campus, the chances are high that a student is certified to do them and charges well under $100. I get mine done for $60 and leave happy with the work done every time.

5. You can go bare-faced and still feel flawless.

I have never woken up and felt so gorgeous right after stumbling out of bed. Lash extensions really give you an extra boost of confidence in feeling like you don't even want to bother with putting on makeup for the day.

6. You will need to wash your face in the sink, not the shower. 

You can get your lashes wet, but water coming forcefully out of a showerhead directly onto your lashes is not good for them. Makeup wipes and a careful face cleaning in the sink will take care of all your facial needs while avoiding causing damage to your lashes. I still use face masks when I have mine done!

7. Check the ingredients in your makeup removing products. 

To remove makeup, I LOVE using coconut oil. If you have lash extensions you should NOT use coconut oil. In fact, when your down to the last few lashes and are ready for them to come off, use coconut oil on a cotton ball and gently rub it along your lash line. Certain oils breakdown the glue used for lash extensions, so be aware of them before using them on your eye makeup.

8. Some people will truly believe they are your natural lashes. 

Here are some responses for their inquiries:

"I wish."

"Lash extensions, 10/10 recommend."

"I woke up like this."

9. You will need to sleep pretty. 

I have a tendency to sleep on my face. A tendency which I soon broke after getting lash extensions. You will have to learn to stay on your side or lay on your back so you don't rub all of your extensions out in the night.

WARNING: Be extra cautious on a night out where adult beverages were consumed. Ruining your lashes by drunkenly rubbing or sleeping on your face may cause heavy lash-loss.

10. They last about two to three weeks.

I have found that mine stay in pretty thick up until about 2.5 weeks. If you are careful, they could definitely still look flawless pushing week three.

11. They aren't damaging to your real lashes.

As long as you go to a licensed lash tech and aren't rubbing your face or pulling your lashes out, your natural lashes are safe and sound!

12. Once you get them done, you'll be going back for more.

It's not an addiction. And if it is, I don't think there is an issue to being addicted to feeling great about your lashes!

Making your lash appointment now? I figured.

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