Two of my favorite non-toxic brands for babies (and you) 

When I was pregnant with Hudson in 2013 I wasn’t aware of mineral oil, phthalates, parabens, fragrance and all of the other “bad ingredients” in baby and beauty products. Soon after he was born (Christmas night 2013) I started doing my research, and found out that most brands contain these harmful ingredients as well as other chemicals. Since then, I have found several safe brands (thanks to Ewg.com ‘s help). Two of my favorite baby brands are The Honest Company and Babyganics. Some products I prefer one brand over the other, but I really trust and enjoy both brands, and use them for myself (pregnant or not) and Hudson daily.

The Honest Company- Organic Healing Balm

  
I use this for cuts, scrapes, diaper rash, zits, chapped lips, hands and cheeks. It is amazing and one tube lasts forever! This is a great switch from bad things like Aquaphor.

Babyganics- Bubble bath

  
I use this to shave my legs and wash with and to wash Hudson (hair and body)

The Honest Company- Organic Body Oil

  
I use this alone or mixed with body lotion for stretch marks or just to moisturize (body and face- yes I said face). Also, add a drop to foundation that is too thick to thin it out or revive it.

Babyganics- Daily Lotion

  
I use on my face and body (alone or mixed with the body oil I mentioned)

The Honest Company and Babyganics- Sunscreen

  
  
I love both!

The Honest Company- Multi-Surface Cleaner

  
I use this absolutely everywhere! Counters, floors, Hudson’s mattress after a leak, you name it!

There are many more from each company that I love and use but these are a great start! Hope you enjoy!

XO

Audra

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Blog Switch

  
In case anyone is super confused about my many blog posts yesterday and my time-lines not matching up entirely…I just switched back to WordPress yesterday, and my blogs from my two years on my other hosting site wouldn’t transfer. So you may be confused by my timelines, and possible links not working etc. Moving forward everything will make a lot more sense to you, I promise. Those old posts were just too good to let go of forever, and never have any record of… so I just reposted most of them yesterday here. Hope you enjoy, the last 4-5 are from recent months so those should make sense. Just to make sure you understand my current situation I am now 7 months pregnant with a 2-year-old! Thanks for reading, write you again soon!

XO

Audra

Honest Beauty Everything Cream Foundation

Holiday Gift Guide Part 2- Honest Beauty Everything Cream Foundation   

 
So far I am so pleased with Honest Beauty (by The Honest Company). I decided to start the line by trying their everything cream foundation ($30 by itself or bundle 3 products for $50). It had great reviews online except a few thought it a tad too thick. I was afraid it would be too liquidy and leave me with an oily face like most creamy foundations, but luckily I was wrong. This is the perfect texture in my opinion- it doesn’t feel too thick or too liquidy. It dries matte and is thick enough to replace concealer and dry enough to replace powder. Basically, when I use this I don’t need my concealer or powder at all!!!! At all!!! That in itself is amazing and reason enough to buy it, in my opinion. Also, the packaging is wonderful and I like applying this best with my Jane Iredale flocked sponge ($5)- it works a bit better than the applicator it comes with. Here I am with the foundation on below. I love it! Well worth it and it is chemical-free unlike most makeup (unless you are using Jane Iredale or Honest you are probably using toxic, chemical-laden makeup)

  
XO
Audra
 

Jane Iredale Liquid Minerals & Smoky Eye Kit

Jane Iredale Liquid Minerals  
I love Jane Iredale, it is what they sell and recommend at my dermatologist’s office for a reason. It may not be a cheap drug store buy, but you get what you pay for on this one. Also, you can buy on Overstock and/or Amazon sometimes for cheaper pricing. I have been using the Jane Iredale Pure Pressed Base &/or the Loose Minerals for a few years now, and I absolute LOVE them! So I was really excited to try out the liquid minerals. When you first look at it it looks like it would never really provide enough coverage in all that clear liquid with random beads but it DOES. Plus, there is a built in serum in that helps with aging! This mineral cosmetics foundation is great for skin prone to rosacea, acne or sensitivity. Its lightweight formula won’t clog your pores or irritate your skin. The sheer, liquid texture creates a smooth, dewy finish. Hyaluronic acid in this makeup binds water to the skin to prevent moisture loss. Vitamin C provides antioxidant protection against environmental damage. This formula also contains coenzyme Q10 to help diminish the signs of aging. The beads that are visible inside the airless pump are liposomes in a soothing formula of aloe vera gel and glycerin. This innovative technology prevents the active ingredients from breaking down thanks to its time-released delivery system. Jane Iredale Liquid Mineral is paraben-free, gluten-free, vegan and non-comedogenic. You should really try it out, it is heavy enough but not too heavy (not cakey). I do use a powder over it to matte some oily areas.
   

JaneIredale.com
XO
Audra

Holiday Gift Guide- Part 1…Jane Iredale Smoky Eye Kit

  
Hey everyone here is my first pick for my 2015 Holiday Gift Guide 2015! This is called the Jane Iredale In The Blink of a Smoky Eye- Smoky Eye Kit. It retails for $50 at Jane Iredale’s website. The colors included are called 1-Bone (which is one of the large colors and is very very soft and a tad creamy- it isn’t wet but just so so soft and has the best texture and the applicator is worth $20 itself it is amazingly soft as well and sturdy btw) 2-Pure Gold (pale enough to be a base color as well but has a hint of shimmer to it and is also a great shade to have a large amount of) 3- Dawn (shimmery rose brown but looks more brown on-a great crease color or all over smoky eye color) 4-Rose Gold (love this shimmery color as a crease color for a “day look”) 5- Iris (crease color or eyeline color to smoke out when you’re feeling edgy) 6- Forest (great as well for a crease or eyeliner to smoke out and is a more subtle edgy color) 7- Double Espresso (a perfect matte and cool brown for a crease, eyeliner or all over smoky eye) 8-Ebony (for high drama or wet it for a dramatic eyeliner as well) 
The packaging is great and even magnetizes itself shut, and is sturdy like a book. They perfectly chose the colors to make larger and smaller based on use, which gives you the best bang for your buck. These are all crease resistant shades, which I know I appreciate with my crazy pregnancy hormones haha. This would make a beautiful gift and includes everything you need so no upsells or add-ons like a case or brush etc. I definitely recommend and included a picture of me with Bone as my base mixed with Pure Gold and my crease is Forest mixed with a tiny bit of Double Espresso. (Please excuse the bright orange shirt haha and the black brushes on the side not included or needed
   

XO
Audra 

My Fit Tips

Fit tips  
I often get asked in relation to fitness “what do you do for your workouts” NOT because I have an amazing flawless figure (because I definitely don’t) but I am fit for the most part and try to be healthy and I love fitness. The truth is that that question should not be easy to answer if you are doing it right. You shouldn’t have a set routine that you do every single day, or you are not going to continue to see results. I continually change it up. For my cardio I will say…during the winter months I did my elliptical a LOT (see my last post to see how you can get your own portable at home elliptical for less than $150). Now that the weather is warmer I try to go for long walks, do my elliptical, or do some form of cardio video. I love Valerie Water’s Hot In A Hurry Series- it is about $60 on ValerieWaters.com it is cardio and strength all in one HIIT workout…and there are plenty of FREE videos I do on YouTube as well by Valerie Waters, Tracy Anderson, Hip Hop Abs, Jillian Michaels to name a few of my fave cardios. Same goes for toning up I like to lift heavier, lift lighter, do Yoga or Pilates, Barre, Dancing (Solo in the house…just bust a move or have a family dance party those are way fun), or a number of videos for free on YouTube by Blogilates, Valerie Waters, Tracy Anderson or Jillian Michaels. Just make sure you do both strength and cardio, everyday if you can, or stagger throughout the week. Keep switching up your workouts so your muscles continue to be confused as to what is coming next and continue to get sore. Better sore than sorry! Try to find things that you enjoy as well, so you are likely to stick with it! For more info. on more specifics tweet or facebook me!
@AudraMcElyea or @AudrasPicks on Twitter and Instagram or search Audra’s Picks on Facebook
XO
Audra

BioTrust Low Carb

I have recently begun a new workout program called “Hot In A Hurry” by Valerie Waters, which I will fully review here soon (I loved it). In that workout program trainer to the stars (think incredible women like Jennifer Garner, Reese Witherspoon, Jessica Biel, Kate Beckinsale) Valerie Waters recommends a nutrition plan as well as a TON of other great info. One product she uses to replace breakfast is BioTrust Low Carb. This is a low carb protein blend that is sweetened naturally with stevia extract and a naturally sweet form of fiber call inulin. BioTrust Low Carb packs 4 grams of high quality fiber per serving and only 1 gram of sugar per 24 grams of protein! It’s unlikely you’ll find that anywhere else in the protein market, but to be honest, I’m just getting started. BioTrust Low Carb is also sourced from cows not treated with the dangerous growth hormone rBGH, and rBST. I don’t know about you, but it’s certainly my goal to avoid putting synthetic, unnatural hormones into my body whenever possible. I also love that this protein is a time-released four-protein blend as well as being gluten free, so I don’t have to worry about getting sick (which is always a plus for me). One container contains 14 servings for $49, but the more you buy the cheaper the deal you get, and even at $49 (which most proteins at even Walmart are, or are close to it) you are getting a good deal of high quality product. Valerie recommends using 1 scoop instead of 2 per shake (which is what I also do) so mine will last me a whole month (28 servings), and honestly 2 scoops is a little overkill for anyone in my opinion. I love the taste and results so far and I hope to see some great fat loss soon (right now I am mixing 1 scoop powder in the milk chocolate flavor, 10 oz 1% milk, a little extra stevia, a few ice cubes and 1/2 to 1 teaspoon of peanut butter. I blend, then let it sit overnight and drink it in the morning for breakfast when my little man gets me up all hungry and I am in a hurry). Let me know if you are interested in this product and want to join me on this journey. Audra’s Picks is now an affiliate for BioTrust so you can order from me right here Order BioTrust Low Carb from Audra’s Picks. There are also a lot of other healthy products by BioTrust, I can’t vouch for them quite yet but if you are interested

email me(AudrasPicks@gmail.com)
  
XO
Audra

Caribbean Solutions Tanner and Yes To Carrots Moisturizer 

 If you are trying to cut back on toxic chemicals (found in just about every beauty product out there by the way) you really need to check out EWG . They rate products for you (think makeup, skincare, deodorant, hair products, cleaners etc.) I try to stick with products in the 0-3 range. During this wintry time I feel much better with a little tan, so when I want to use self tanner I use Caribbean Solutions’ Beach Colours self tanner (EWG’s top rated tanner at a 2). I have used it for about a year and I really love it. You can buy it from the Caribbean Solutions site or Amazon has it sometimes at a lower cost. I have even used it on my face quite a bit and, unlike other tanners, it hasn’t broke me out at all! Every other one has! So this was a pleasant surprise! You will be surprised how much less makeup you will need, and how much more filled in your brows will look! I love it! I like to mix half & half parts of my moisturizer and my tanner on my face before putting on my makeup-to build a little color on my face during the day (since a fake tan fades faster from your face than your body)… and/or use it all over my face and body at night (sans moisturizer) before bed for a more potent dose. By the way I use the Yes To Carrots Fragrance Free Nourishing Daily Moisturizer with SPF 15 (rated a 2, the non fragrance free kind is rated a 5…big difference!!!) and love it! Find it here at Target!
   
 

Proactiv BB

Holiday Gift Guide-

Stress-free Skincare  
My skin always gets the best of me around the holidays…and every holiday season I start using my Proactiv or Proactiv+ yet again. Anytime I get stressed I start getting those awful cyst-like pimples on my chin, it never ever fails. When that happens, or when I think it may happen I like to just go ahead and start my Proactiv regimen again. This year I have proactively used Proactiv+, pun intended haha, and I have been good so far! I just wanted to share with you how amazing their BB cream is. I was not aware they had one, or the other plethora of products they carry as single items like concealer or primer but they do! How amazing is it to know you can use makeup that helps prevent breakouts now? I had to share. I am using the BB cream in light as my moisturizer, sunscreen, and light sheer tint and I love it. It doesn’t break me out and it doesn’t feel greasy either, and it had a fresh wonderful sunscreen smell which I love!!! Just wanted to remind you, if you are breaking out… that there is always Proactiv and it has worked for me for ten+ years! Here is a link to all their products in their catalog Proactiv Catalog
XO

Audra

Texturized Hair

Texturize Me  

Wondering how to get that messy textured look? Two words- dry shampoo…I like Suave’s knock off of Bumble and Bumble- called Suave Keratin Infusion Dry Shampoo…
1. Part hair… Then spray hair with hairspray (I like Suave Professionals)

2. Wrinkle/curl hair with straightener or curling wand leaving last inch or so of hair out- then finger the curls out

3. Spray again with hairspray

4. Spray with dry shampoo all over and then scrunch all over
XO

Audra

Jane Iredale

A great chemical free makeup brand- Jane Iredale

  
If you are like me and are trying to steer clear or at least cut back on toxic chemicals found in just about every makeup brand out there (don’t think yours is? Then check it on EWG Skin Deep’s website or use their EWG Skin Deep app to find out) then Jane Iredale is a great choice. You can buy at your dermatologist’s office, Overstock.com for an occasional deal, or JaneIredale.com. I have been buying the loose mineral powder on Amazon and I recently won several products through a Twitter contest held by Jane Iredale. I won the City Nights Collection Jelly Jar gel eyeliner in green and purple which I love because they add a fun pop of color to your eyes without being “loud” or going overboard. If you want to add a bit of edge but are a little conservative, this would be great for you! I also won the Kir Royale Puregloss Lip Gloss and the Katerina Puremoist Lipstick, both are superb but the lipstick is my favorite lip color ever! It is a nice wine-berry color that is bold, but not too bright or too dark, and the shade will absolutely compliment all skin colors! It is my pick for this collection-hands down! I also got the 24-Karat gold dust, silver dust and bronze dust…these are glittery sparkles sent from heaven! I don’t know how they did it, but they managed to make glitter that is more of a shimmery highlighter than your typical “glitter” makeup. This is a costly item but if you are going to splurge and use sparingly for special occasions, then you can justify it in my opinion…because it is like a little miracle! You would probably just have to use it to believe me. The bronze is a great bronzer, the gold and silver are great facial highlighters! I buy/use the Jane Iredale Amazing Loose Mineral Powder as well and I get it on Overstock for about $25. I like it because it is light but covers and unlike a lot of powders it doesn’t accentuate wrinkles. I like to use my Yes To Carrots Fragrance Free moisturizer and then put this on before my face dries completely to also negate the powder-wrinkle problem a lot of people have. This kind of creates a tinted moisturizer look. In my opinion you can’t go wrong with Jane Iredale, and buy on Overstock if you think it is too pricey…your body will thank you down the road for spending a little more to keep your body safe from cancer causing chemicals found in most cosmetics!!! 
XO

Audra