An Organic Take on Skincare


It’s official. I think getting away to enjoy a spa day is going to be a foreign concept for awhile! I’ve entered newborn land. Between feedings and diaper changes, laundry and oh yea, remembering to bathe myself, it looks like I’ll have to wait a month or two until things feel normal and I can schedule some peronsal pampering time. That said, I am making a point to carve out a few quick and easy at-home spa-like moments {thank gawd for grandmas!}. You’ve got to keep your sanity somehow! With just 20 minutes once a week and some yummy organic skincare products, I can give my face that nice “I just had a facial” glow and I feel much more human! It’s these little rituals that can make the trials of daily life a little easier to handle – even when a newborn isn’t involved. Oh and spending some me-time in an insanely gorgeous bathroom doesn’t hurt either!

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Currently, I’m experimenting with Target’s first all-natural skin care line SW Basics. I love that each product includes less than five ingredients {and they’re all organic!} meaning higher-potency and less chance of any additives irritating my skin. For the past year I’ve been trying to switch out all of my beauty products to an organic option {especially once I found out I was pregnant} and this line makes it super affordable to do that. Yay!

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When I’m craving a healthy skin boost, I first steam bath my face to open up my pores. Simply simmer a pot of water, take it off the stove, and put your face above it with a towel draped over your head, making a tent to trap the steam in. Do this for about five minutes and then wash your face and neck. I’ve fallen in love with rosewater over the years and this rosewater and tea tree oil cleanser is so gentle and hydrating.

Next, I exfoliate to get rid of any dry skin and to really give my face a deep clean. This organic oat flour, almond flour and sea salt exfoliant is rich in vitamin E and just what my sleep-deprived skin needs! You can also use it as a mask just by adding organic plain yogurt or honey to the dry mixture – extra bliss time. I do both: exfoliate, then mask and it’s such a treat for the skin!

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After the mask dries {about 10 minutes}, I rinse with cold water {important to close your nice and clean pores back up!} and smooth on toner. It’s a step I usually skip in my daily regimen so it’s nice to give my skin extra treatment. You could also try using SW Basic’s raw apple cider vinegar and witch hazel toner to balance out the pH levels.

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Oh, but my favorite thing of all is body scrub! This SW Basics Body Scrub is the real deal. Use it everywhere from your neck to your elbows and it will leave your skin silky soft and smelling delicious! Seriously, this scrub smells so much like dessert, I want to eat it. Thing is, with only three ingredients in it: organic sugar, coconut oil and shredded coconut, you literally COULD eat it!

I can’t tell you how much the right products can change the health of your skin. Plus, knowing that you aren’t putting any crazy chemicals on or in your body just makes you feel good, ya know? I highly recommend stealing that all-too-critical me time once a week. You deserve to indulge in a little beauty pick me up. It makes the world of a difference for your skin and your mental health. I’m thinking maybe I should try to do this twice a week!

original photography for apartment 34 by Charles Redding // art direction by erin hiemstra

This post is brought to you by Target Style. Shop the new Beauty collection in stores and online. All thoughts and opinions are our own. Thank you for supporting posts that keep Apartment 34’s doors open.

Color Coded: {Pops of Poppy}

Red is one of those colors you either love or you hate. The right type of fiery personality struts it with confidence or splashes it about in their home decor. That said, we are not typcially that person {save a good red lipstick!}. But with a tinge of orange and a hint of rust, a fresh poppy hue has us rethinking our refusal to experiment with red really hard. It’s jolting without being offensive to the eyes and it’s subtle undertones make it surprisingly sophisticated. Best part is, you just need a pop of it!

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What do you red-haters say? Good, right? Those shiny, lacquered cabinets really get us going {in a good way!} and those bold strokes in the abstract painting just bring it home. We also can never say no to a blood orange anything and juju hats in that same audacious color perfectly offset a super neutral room.

We have to say poppy may have just become our new bold obsession!

SHOP OUR FAVORITE POPPY PIECES!

image 1 via Interior Design // 2 via M Bakes // 3 via Haymes // 4 via Architectural Digest Espana // 5 via Bon George // 6 via Angus Fergusson 

Retail Therapy: {Oakland’s Best Decor Store}

We do our fair share of running around our cities exploring, perusing, eating, shopping and drinking. We call it “work,” but really, it’s what our life goals are made of! It’s an especially good day when we stumble upon something so good, we name it the best. We discovered this sweet shop over a year ago and have been loyal to it since. Every couple of months we pop in to see what newly curated treasures adorn the shelves and every time, every time, we fall in love with it all over again. Properly named and popularly adored, I Love Neighbor is the best decor store in Oakland and here’s why!

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You’re strolling down Piedmont Ave on what’s likely a gorgeous day in Oakland. The East Bay is always good for sunshine! On any particular day, the City Across the Bay is at least 5 degrees warmer and the sky much sunnier than fog-ridden San Francisco. As you pass all of the usual suspects, some that have occupied the street for years – decades, even – Fenton’s Creamery, Lost and Found Antiques, Issues, you mosey past something new, fresh, young: I Love Neighbor. You go in {duh!} and your eyes become as big as saucers as they proceed to soak up every little nook and cranny of this gorgeously curated space.

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Brass chandeliers made by local artists, glass and ceramic mobiles, vintage paintings and antique taxidermy all hang from the walls or soar from the tall, wood beam ceilings above you. Black and white Icelandic sheepskins, classic striped foutas, colorful Moroccan rugs and handmade textiles from artists in Brooklyn adorn a mid-century chair or spill over a dip-dyed ladder.

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Locally made candles, cocktail syrups and shrubs, organic soaps and detergents {peach oil laundry detergent. hello!} line the chic shelves. Grey washed live-edge bowls, smoothly carved horn spoons, unique candlesticks, tiny leather coin pouches, brass scissors in every size and rope dog leashes all make the cut in their well-stocked cabinets.

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And, the staff! Well, they’ll become your new best friends not only because they are so friendly, but they’ll also indulge you as you jabber about loving everrrrr-y-thing. They’ll likely tell you about the item in your hand and somehow convince you, in a way your best friend would, that you need it. The store is inviting, never stuffy or intimidating and there’s a backyard luring you in for “just a peek through the back door” yet it enticies you to sit down and stay a while – a neighborly Oakland mentality if we’ve ever seen one!

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So if you’re in the neighborhood, stop by Neighbor. And if you’re not, do yourself a favor and be in the neighborhood! To all our buddies in San Francisco who rarely find themselves breaking out of their norm, I Love Neighbor is worth the quick drive over the bridge and we dare you, just dare you, to not fall in love!

original photography for apartment 34 by aubrie pick