new year, new you

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I’ll admit to something rather nerdy here: I really enjoy self help books. Not so much the cheesy ones, but those that provide a real insight into how humans work and interact. I’m especially prone to books that include a lot of science and research. I can’t help it – I find it fascinating. Because it’s almost a new year and everyone will be thinking about how to better themselves for 2017, I thought I’d compile a list of my favorite books about improving your life.

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best buys : glossier

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As an avid reader of Into the Gloss (their Top Shelf series is one of my favorites), I discovered Glossier fairly soon after it launched. The first product I tried was the Balm Dotcom and I was immediately hooked. Now, there’s a regular group of Glossier products in my arsenal that I couldn’t live without. It doesn’t hurt that they look pretty on my vanity either. Here are a few of my favorites.

Balm Dotcom, $12
The aforementioned “skin salve,” as they call it, is an all around miracle worker. I use it on my lips and hands (specifically, my cuticles) daily and it has made such a difference. I’ve also used it on my feet in between pedicures and any small patches of dry skin, as needed. And, bonus, they also have flavored options – I have the cherry, which I love, but I still keep the regular version on hand as well.

Milky Jelly Cleanser, $18
This product comes with a backstory. The whole idea started with an Into the Gloss post about what people wanted in an ideal face wash. The answers came rolling in and, about a year later, they launched this cleanser. I’m in love. It’s super hydrating and incredibly smooth. It works on dry or wet skin (I do both) and rinses away makeup quickly. The one thing I had to adjust to was the lack of lather with this face wash – but once I got over that (and realized how well it was working) that was the last of my concerns. It makes my skin feel amazing year round.

Boy Brow, $16
A friend at work convinced me that I needed this a few months ago and I’m so glad she did. I have dark blonde eyebrows and, even though I get them tinted once a month, they usually benefit from a little filling in. I’ve used so many different brow products over the years it’s hard to keep track, but I think I’m sticking with this one. It makes my eyebrows look fuller and helps them hold their shape throughout the day or night.

Generation G Lip Stick, $18
I’m constantly changing up my makeup depending on the season and, of course, my mood. Especially at night. But during the day I keep a pretty standard regimen, mostly because it helps me get out the door faster in the mornings. Part of that regimen? This lipstick. I have the “Like” and “Zip” shades, but I’m eyeing “Crush” or “Jam” for winter. I use the “Like” one so much that I keep one in my purse or makeup bag and another stashed away in my office, just in case.

recipe roundup : holiday cocktails and appetizers

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The holiday season is in full swing. Whether you’re entertaining at your home or need something to bring to a gathering, there should be something on this list for you. I’ve compiled some of my favorite appetizers or hors d’oeuvres and cocktail recipes below along with a few that I haven’t tried before that look promising. One recipe you won’t find? Eggnog. Sorry, it’s just not my thing.

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how to assemble a cheese plate

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I’m a sucker for a good cheese plate, despite the fact that I don’t love cheese. Over the years (and thanks to Pinterest), I’ve picked up a few tips and pointers that are extremely helpful. There are a million ways to arrange a cheese plate – I tend to like it when they’re more organic looking, and sort of overflowing with different things. Here’s the best advice I’ve gotten.

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