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Watch: 6 Fitness Moves To Bust Cellulite

cellulite workout

photo credit: Erica Hampton Photography

We all have cellulite. And we can all agree on the fact that we hate it.

Today on my channel, fitness expert Christine Bullock is showing us how to blast that cellulite with a few simple moves. I filmed this video awhile ago…which means that I really, really, really need it now. Post birth cellulite? Yeah. Not pretty. You better believe I’ll be doing these moves the second I’m able to work out again!

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Get the full workout here + a Q&A with Christine: 

MOVE #1: Pilates Kick With A Twist 

cellulite workout

MOVE #2: The Bridge 

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Move #3: Chair Pose

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Move #4: The Malasana

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Move #5: Thigh Clap Jump

Move #6: Donkey Kick

For more fitness + wellness tips, make sure to subscribe to my channel here

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Self-Improvement Books For The New Year

self-improvement-books

Self-improvement or “self-help” books get a bad reputation sometimes. I can’t decide if it’s because people still correlate them with the Chicken Soup For The Soul books or if we hate to admit that we don’t have all the answers. Either way, I’m the first to profess my love for them. Whether it’s to improve my health, strengthen my spirtuality, or channel my inner badass–there’s some great information out there.

Since 2017 is upon us and resolutions are being made, I thought it would be the perfect time to share some of my favorite self-improvement reads through the years. Here are some titles that have helped me and may help you, too:

Health:

 

1. Taller, Slimmer, Younger: 21 Days To A Foam Roller Physique by Lauren Roxburgh 

If you’ve never tried foam rolling, I highly recommend it. Lauren’s program is designed to improve posture, release tension and stress, activate and strengthen the core, and heal from the inside out. When I was a model, I used a foam roller to lengthen my muscles. I’m so excited to get back into it once I give birth! Oh, and Goop dubbed her “The Body Whisperer.” Enough said.

2. Two Turns From Zero: Pushing To Higher Fitness Goals–Converting Them To Life Strength by Stacey Griffith 

We all need a little kick in the ass every once in a while to get that workout in. That’s where Stacey Griffith comes in. I was first introduced to Stacey at a SoulCycle class (she was a founding instructor) and I was instantly hooked. Even when I felt like giving up, she gave me that last bit of grit and inspiration to keep going. Oh, she’s also hilarious. Her book isn’t out yet but it’s available on pre-order. She gave me an advanced copy, though and let me tell you–it’s worth the read.

3. Eat Pretty Every Day: 365 Daily Inspirations For Nourishing Beauty, Inside And Out by Jolene Hart

Think of this book as your “beauty bible.” Instead of verses and psalms, Jolene gives daily tips on how to live clean, eat beautifully, and look good doing it. It’s actually split up by season which makes it that much easier to implement into your daily life. I keep by my bedside so I can start my morning off on a healthy note. The other option is to read it all at once–but that’s not as fun!

4. The Sleep Revolution: Transforming Your Life, One Night At A Time by Arianna Huffington 

These days, we see it as the norm to be completely and utterly exhausted–especially as moms. The only time I can truly catch up on sleep is if I’m on a weekend getaway with Scott or on that 5-hour flight from LAX to JFK. I feel like that’s where this “mommy guilt” comes in. Even when the kids are asleep, there is still so much to do. If we go to bed early, we feel selfish. But, guess what? It’s horrible for our physical and mental health. Sure, you did the dishes. But, you won’t be as engaged with your kids or in the office the next day if you only have one eye open. The Sleep Revolution helps bring awareness to how sleep-deprieved we really are and how we can change it.

5. Food Freedom Forever: Letting Go Of Bad Habits, Guilt, And Anxiety Around Food by Melissa Hartwig 

In my twenties, as a model, I had a lot of unhealthy habits. My priority wasn’t health–it was losing those inches. Even if it meant starving myself and drinking Dieter’s Tea non-stop. Yeah, gross! It began to also affect my mental health, too. All I did was think about food. I felt guilty if I indulged a bit. It was horrible. That’s why I’m such a fan of Melissa Hartwig’s program, The Whole 30. It’s all about re-training yourself to eat for health. No anxiety, no guilt. Food Freedom Forever is just the book if you’re looking to change your mindset for real results.

Personal Growth/Spirituality:

 

1. 21 Days To Resilience: How To Transcend Your Daily Grind, Deal With The Tough Stuff, And Discover Your Strongest Self by Dr. Zelana Montminy 

As a busy mom and wife, things can get pretty hectic. Stress can quickly creep in and take over! Since stressors in our lives are inevitable, it’s more about dealing with them effectively—not trying to abolish them entirely. In other words, shit happens! Not only does Dr. Montminy give you the tools to deal with the tough stuff, she also gives you realistic exercises to discover your strongest self. Keyword: realistic. And that’s what I love about this book!

2. The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho

The Alchemist is a life changer. I’ve read it. My mom has read it. My friends have read it. My sister-in-law has read it. The list goes on and on. Paul Coelho’s wisdom and stories have helped me make decisions, take risks, and embrace the present (to name a few!) It’s one of those books that are meant to be read over and over whenever you need those little reminders.

3. The Year Of Magical Thinking by Joan Didion 

Another classic. The Year Of Magical Thinking is actually more of a memoir than a self-improvement book which makes it extremely unique. Joan writes about grief and loss in her own words and experiences. I’ve found that reading this book has given me comfort and wisdom, even if my experiences were different.

4. You Learn By Living: Eleven Keys For A More Fulfilling Life by Eleanor Roosevelt 

This is another one of those books that I gift to friends or force them to read. Eleanor Roosevelt was a strong, badass woman and her advice proves it. The chapters cover everything from individuality to overcoming fear. Honestly, each piece of advice makes me want to conquer the world…twice #GirlBoss style. I definitely plan on passing this book down to Scarlett.

5. The Happiness Project (Revised Edition) by Gretchen Rubin

I picked this book up at the airport a few years ago and nearly finished it by the time I landed. As much as we want happiness, sometimes we don’t help ourselves find it. Most of us just see it as an emotion that comes and goes rather than a state of mind. Gretchen Rubin challenged that by asking herself, “What do I want from life anyway?” When she realized she wanted to be happy (like we all do), she took matters into her own hands and dedicated a year to finding it. The Happiness Project shows how she did it and some great studies to back it up.

Productivity/Success:

 

1. The Power Of Habit: Why We Do What We Do In Life And Business by Charles Duhigg

I pride myself in my good habits. I also know I have a handful of horrible ones. As much as I’ve tried to quit some cold turkey, it just doesn’t work that way for me. The Power Of Habit dives deep into why we do what we do and how we can change it. The studies apply to everything whether you want to lose weight, cut that extra glass of wine, or change a habit in professional life. Once you realize how the brain works, it becomes a bit easier.

2. Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear by Elizabeth Gilbert 

There have been days where I’ve sat at my computer and had nothing to type. I truly couldn’t put a word on paper. There’s truly nothing worse than a lack of creative inspiration. It always happens on the days I need it the most! Elizabeth Gilbert walks you through the process of inspiration and empowerment with her own personal experiences and insight into why we sometimes lose that spark.

3. The Pie Life: A Guilt-Free Recipe For Success And Satisfaction by Samantha Ettus 

I want to start out by saying that Samantha Ettus is a superwoman. I have no doubt in my mind. In her book, she shares her secrets on how to truly live a healthy and balanced personal and professional life. If you’ve been feeling that mommy guilt, read this book immediately. I’ll never be as on top of it as I’d like to be but at least I feel a little on my way. Baby steps, right? It’s all about the right kind of life hacks to help manage it all.

4. Outliers: The Story Of Success by Malcolm Gladwell 

This past July, there was an article in Fortune Magazine about what creates super successful families or siblings. Is it genetic? Is enviromental? Malcolm Gladwell’s book, Outliers, is all about that question and what we can learn from it. In Malcolm’s opinion, we pay too much attention to what successful people are like in the present and not what made them that way. Such an interesting read!

5. Spark Joy: An Illustrated Master Class On The Art Of Organizing And Tidying Up by Marie Kondo

I’ve been nesting to prepare for the new baby like a mad woman. My husband, Scott, jokingly asked if there would be anything left by the time I was done. Marie Kondo, who wrote the iconic Life Changing Magic Of Tidying Up, gifted us with a sequel titled, Spark Joy. I say gifted because I truly feel like it’s my excuse and answer for all of my obsessive-compulsive tendencies. If you’re looking to simplify, this is a must-read.

Do you have a favorite self-improvement book I didn’t include? Comment below with the title! I’d love to check it out. 

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5 Tips To Feel Well-Rested (Even If You’re A Mom!)

sleep tips

I never knew the true definition of exhaustion until I became a mom. Even when my kids started sleeping through the night, I still found myself struggling to get the proper amount of rest. If there’s one thing I’ve learned, it’s that sleep is a priority–no matter who you are.

The key is to not let yourself get to the point of exhaustion before crawling into bed. It’s all about finding soothing routines and habits to prepare for sleep. If possible, let yourself wind down up to an before you plan on calling it a day.

Here are some tips and tricks I’ve learned to help myself look and feel more well-rested:

TIP #1: Create Your Calming Space

We are the product of our surroundings. To drift off into a soothing sleep, create your room to mimic that. Turn off the harsh lights, burn a candle, and designate that space as your quiet time. For those who catch up on work in bed, don’t. Keep those stressors away from your bedroom as much as possible. A reminder of your chaotic schedule for the next day is a surefire way to lose some sleep.

TIP #2: Don’t Leave Your Messes Until The Morning

On the same note of creating a calm space, don’t leave the housework for the next day. Just do it. Even if it requires staying up a little longer after you put the kids to bed, it pays off. I can’t even tell you how many times I’ve been trying to doze off and I start dreading the dishes I have to conquer in the morning. Once I realized how much that affected my overall sleep quality, I stopped procrastinating.

Repeat after me: a clean house is a natural form of Ambien.

TIP #3: Treat Yourself To Essential Oils

sleep tips

I’ve been using essential oils to naturally calm and de-stress for years. Not only does it help mentally but it feels amazing on your skin. Scents like lavender, chamomile, ylang-ylang, and cedarwood are all great for sleep specifically.

If you’re looking for something truly luxurious, the Pure Rest Wellness Oil from UMA Oils is a great option. It’s natural, organic, and feels like heaven before climbing into your sheets. To get the full effect, I like to take a few minutes to massage and let it completely sink in. You can even use on your fussy child or your husband.

1. Begin by gently rubbing the skin between your toes to create warmth in the area. Once the area is warm, take 4-5 drops of your favorite essential oil and massage between your toes, spending around 3-5 seconds between each toe.

2. With the oil still on your fingers and palms, massage the bottoms of your feet, spending about 30 seconds on each foot.

3. Move up your wrists and gently massage the area using your thumb, spending about 10-15 seconds on each wrist.

4. Next, massage the area behind your ears using your forefingers in a circular motion for 10 seconds.

5. Finally, cup your palms over your nose and mouth and take five deep inhales. This final step triggers the olfactory therapeutic benefits of essential oils.

TIP #4: Turn Off Your Electronics

This may sound insane but it seriously helps. After a day of activity (and sometimes chaos), the last thing you need is a show keeping you up. Yep, I’m talking to you binge watchers! It’s not just the show that can cause you to lose shut-eye–it’s also the light from your TV or iPad. They’ve actually done studies that have shown that the LED blue light of the electronics can slow the hormone that signals our brains that it’s time to go to bed.

Instead, find a “winding-down” ritual like journaling or reading. I’ve noticed that reading makes me fall asleep faster and also gives me a higher quality of sleep throughout the night. If you need some book recommendations, click here for some of my fall favorites!

TIP #5: Invest In A Silk Eye Mask

sleep tips

A silk eye mask is the epitome of beauty sleep. Not only does it keep the light out to make you feel more well-rested…it also can help make you look well-rested.

The skin around our eyes is extremely delicate. The more you toss and turn in the middle of the night, the more you risk that delicate skin becoming irritated. This can result in premature aging and dull skin. Let’s be honest–there’s nothing like a fresh set of dark circles to ruin a morning.

Silk also helps skin keep the moisture in. A normal cotton or synthetic sleep mask is more absorbent which draws away the moisture. The more your skin is moisturized, the more bright-eyed and less exhausted you’ll look. And when you look good, you feel good. Am I right!?

FYI: If you’re not an eye mask person, a silk pillow works, too. The brand, Slip, has great options for both. Shop them here.

Sweet dreams! 

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7 Safe Exercises For Every Trimester In Your Pregnancy

prenatal fitness

photo credit: Erica Hampton Photography

I’ve been very open about the fact that I gained seventy-two pounds during my first pregnancy. One reason I gained so much was because of a pregnancy-induced thyroid issue. Another reason? I started retaining a lot of water early on. I was eating healthy but could have been eating better. Let’s be honest–just because you are pregnant doesn’t mean it gives you a creative license to eat whatever you want!

During my second pregnancy, I was definitely more proactive about my health. Even though it’s the last possible thing you’ll want to do, exercise really does help. When you keep your body strong, it can not only make the delivery smoother but also helps with quick recovery back to pre-baby body. It also can help with the anxiety and morning sickness that come with pregnancy, too.

We all hear about what we can’t and shouldn’t do during pregnancy but what about what we can and should do? When I found out I was expecting my third, I reached out to Jenn Seracuse who is a trainer at one of my favorite fitness classes in NYC, Flex Studios. Jen is the Director of Pilates at the studio but is also certified in Prenatal and Postnatal exercise.

I asked Jenn to put together some moves we can all do safely during our entire pregnancy. All you need is yoga mat! Here’s 7 exercises to try at home now: 

MOVE #1: Transverse Contractions (Hug The Baby)

prenatal fitness

  • Start standing or sitting in a comfortable position so that the spine is neutral and the ribs and shoulders can be directly over the hips with the hands on the belly framing the naval.
  • Inhale deeply into the belly so that it expands and pushes the hands apart, keeping the shoulders relaxed.
  • Exhale contract the deepest layer of the abdominals (The Transverse Abdominis) to bring the belly button to the spine and the hands back together (as if you are hugging your baby in tight.)
  • Hold one count
  • Repeat 25-50 times. You can break it up into 25 at the beginning of the workout and 25 at the end.
  • With every rep, think of contracting the abdominals not just front to back, but top to bottom, bottom to top, and side to side.          

MOVE #2: Knee Lift

  • Start in an all fours position with the wrists under the shoulders and the knees under the hips, legs squeezing together.
  • Exhale, engage the transverse bringing the belly up to the spine and float the knees 1-2 inches off the floor. HOLD 4 counts keeping the belly pulled in tight.
  • Inhale to lower the knees.
  • Repeat 8-10 times.

MOVE #3: Watchdog Balance 

prenatal fitness

  • Start in an all fours position with the wrists under the shoulders and the knees under the hips. On the reformer this means opening the carriage a few inches and holding it open throughout, giving the abdominals more of a challenge.
  • Exhale, engage the transverse bringing the belly up to the spine and lengthen one leg back straight off the floor and the opposite arm straight forward off the floor maintaining neutral alignment in the rest of the body.
  • Inhale to hold & balance
  • Exhale, open the arm and leg to the side in opposite directions, again maintaining neutral alignment without moving the spine, ribs, shoulders or pelvis. Only open as far as possible without shifting (6-12in).
  • Inhale return arm and leg to center.
  • Repeat on same side 8-10 times and then switch

 

MOVE #4: Squats

  • Start standing with feet parallel & hip distance apart (or slightly wider for larger bellies, but keep toes point forward).
  • Inhale as you bend the knees and hinge the hips back and down reaching the arms forward, squatting as deep as possible with the weight in the heels and abdominals engaged. Make sure to keep the knees    directly over the ankles and the pelvis neutral (not tucked under). This position is a stretch and a release for the pelvic floor and glutes, so make sure they are lengthened.
  • Exhale to stand back up to start position, contracting the pelvic floor muscles and making sure the glutes engage at the top to fully extend the hip.
  • Repeat for 30 seconds to 1 minute holding the last one down for 10 counts to really feel the release and opening of the pelvic outlet and fire up the quads.
  • Repeat sequence 3 times

MOVE #5: Lunge To Arabesque 

prenatal fitness

  • Start standing with feet parallel & hip distance apart.
  • Inhale Step one foot back into a lunge hinging the spine slightly forward and keeping the front knee over the ankle. Arms reach up with the biceps next to the ears.
  • Exhale to straighten the front leg bringing the back foot off the ground with the leg long behind the hip, keeping the spine hinged forward. Make sure standing leg is fully lengthened and glutes are engaged. Arms open out to side.
  • Place lifted foot back into lunge position reaching arms back up.
  • Repeat on same side 30-45 seconds then switch. Do 3 sets with a 10-15 sec rest between. Remember that balance and form are more important than speed. Use a chair for balance if needed.

MOVE #6: Side Lying Clamshell 

prenatal fitness

  • Start lying on one side with head resting on arm and knees bent up in front of hips in a 90 degree angle. Top hand is on the hip or on the floor in front of the torso.
  • The hips should be stacked one on top of the other and there should be length on both sides of the waist, keeping the spine and pelvis neutral.
  • Exhale as you open the top knee keeping the feet together and without allowing the top hip to drop back.
  • Inhale to lower the knee back to start
  • Repeat on same side for approximately 1 min, holding the last one for 10 counts, then switch sides.
  • For more challenge, lift the feet off the floor, but only if pelvic alignment can be maintained.

MOVE #7: Modified Pushups 

  • Start in a modified plank position with the wrists under the shoulders and knees on the floor and hips pressed forward making one line from armpit to knee. The glutes and hamstrings should be connected to one another. Head stays in line with the spine throughout.
  • Inhale to bend the elbows out to the side and lower the torso down in one piece, making sure that the abdominals are engaged to protect the lower back.
  • Exhale to straighten the arms pressing back up to the start position, again contracting the abdominals to keep the spine in one long line.
  • Repeat 30-45 seconds. Do 2 sets with a 10-15 sec rest between. Remember that form is more important than speed.

Want more info? Here’s some of the most common questions about prenatal exercise answered by Jenn: 

1) Is it safe for me to start exercising during pregnancy if I didn’t beforehand?
There are many opinions on this subject but here is mine. If you didn’t exercise AT ALL before pregnancy, it’s best not to jump into a rigorous regimen. However, you only stand to benefit from incorporating light prenatal appropriate workouts. Not only will you find labor and delivery go smoother, but it will be easier to reconnect to your muscles postpartum. You also will just feel better throughout your pregnancy and hopefully avoid some of the annoying aches and pains that can so often come along with it. Of course, every pregnancy is unique so it’s important to consult your doctor before beginning any exercise.
2) Is there such thing as “too much” exercise during pregnancy? What’s the happy medium?
Yes, I definitely think expecting moms can overdo it which is why it’s important to work with a trainer or take a class from an instructor who is prenatal certified. It’s important to remember that your body is not at the same as it was pre-pregnancy and to honor that. Your strength and stamina will not be the same. Pushing too hard will not help anyone. That said, light cardio and prenatal safe strength training work will only help you and the baby! One area I often see over training is women being so afraid of losing their abdominals that they continue to do the wrong kind of abdominal work that in fact will have the opposite effect. If the abdominals are over-worked in the wrong way (ie… flexion against gravity like a crunch or twisting against gravity like bicycles) they will split and cause an exaggerated Diastasis Recti, which is very hard to close once it happens. The abdominals should definitely be paid attention to during pregnancy, but in a stabilizing manner focusing on the deepest layer rather than the superficial muscles.
For more details on Jenn Seracuse and Flex Studios, visit their website here
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5 Benefits Of Charcoal In Your Beauty + Wellness Routine

benefits of charcoal

photo credit: Todd Parker Photography

With so many ingredients out there, it’s hard to tell what actually works. Well, I’m here to let you in on a little secret: charcoal needs to be on your radar. I’ve been using this ingredient since my early modeling days and I still use it today.

Charcoal can be used in its powder form, taken in a capsule, or infused in a product. So, what makes it so special? Here are some of the benefits:

BENEFIT #1: Treats Acne Or Oily-Prone Skin

I’ve unfortunately dealt with acne–especially in my twenties. Even today, I still get hormonal breakouts on my jawline and will break out on my forehead and temples, too. It’s not fun! If you’re acne-prone or have oily skin, charcoal can be an extremely beneficial ingredient. When applied on your face, the charcoal draws out all the impurities and bacteria that are trapped deep within.

You can use the charcoal powder as a spot treatment or apply products with activated charcoal already infused into the formula. I prefer to use a product. Garnier SkinActive actually has a charcoal line created for oily skin in mind. I love, love, love their Pore Purifying 2 in-1 Clay Cleanser Mask. It can be used as a daily cleanser to draw out dirt and oil after a long day or as a spot treatment on a pesky pimple. I love that it’s a 2-in-1! The best part? It does it’s job without drying out your skin. Read more about this product here.

benefits of charcoal

photo credit: Todd Parker Photography

BENEFIT #2: Minimizes The Look Of Pores

I have some news to break to you–it’s nearly impossible to shrink the size of your pores. But it is possible to make them look smaller! When your skin is clogged with impurities, your pores can look more noticeable. This is because the more gunk that’s in there, the more the pore will dilate. That’s why it’s always important to make sure to wash your face.

If I’m on the go, at the gym, or on the beach–I still make it a priority. How? I prepare. I pack some cleansing wipes to help refresh my skin and keep it clean. Garnier SkinActive’s Clean+ line has Purifying Oil-Free Cleansing Towelettes with charcoal that can be easily thrown in a bag and used anywhere. The towelette is infused with charcoal and it also helps mattify my skin which is perfect if I’m feeling like I need a little touch-up.

I even use them to clean up my kids’ messy fingers, if needed. These products are truly multi-functional–and perfect for moms!

charcoal

photo credit: Todd Parker Photography

BENEFIT #3: Adds Volume To Limp Or Fine Hair

Many times, it’s the buildup of excess product that makes your hair look and feel flat. That’s why it’s important to cleanse your scalp just as you would your face. Using charcoal clears out that gunk and allows you to start fresh leaving you with better texture and an easier to style your tresses. Just like in skincare,  you can use charcoal powder. But I prefer to buy products with the ingredient already infused in it.

Depending on the severity of your hair, keep your charcoal cleansing routine to a minimum. I would say about once a week should be good for most people. In the summer, when you tend to sweat more, you can bump it up to twice a week. A lot of brands have come out with charcoal lines with both shampoos and conditioners (which will be gentler on the hair).

BENEFIT #4: Detoxes Your System

Like I said, I’ve been using charcoal since my early modeling days. It’s one of the oldest detoxifying methods there is. When ingested, activated charcoal helps absorb and flush out toxins faster than they naturally would.

dirty lemon detox

You have options: you can sip the charcoal in powder form and mix with water, take it in capsule form as a supplement, or drink it in juice form with a lemon. I’m a huge fan of Dirty Lemon Raw Detox water for this purpose! Many juice shops, such as Pressed Juicery, also have great charcoal lemonades to stock up on.

Oh, and did I mention it can help a hangover? Yeah. Stock up!

BENEFIT #5: Whitens Teeth

Over-the-counter or even professional whitening treatments can be really hard on teeth–especially if they tend to be more sensitive. Luckily, there’s always a natural solution! Activated charcoal is a safe and cost-effective way to brighten those pearly whites. Also, since it is a detoxifier, charcoal helps balance the pH levels in your mouth to help prevent cavities or bad breath.

The charcoal works like it does everywhere else. It absorbs and draws out all toxins or in this case, plaque that can stain teeth. All you need to do is wet a toothbrush and dip in a small bowl of activated charcoal powder. Brush as normal. Once done, swish some water and rinse out in the sink. Do this about 2-3 times a week for best results. If you prefer to use daily, Ernest Supplies (found at Barneys New York) has a great toothbrush with charcoal-infused bristles.

I’d love to hear if you tried any of these tips and if they worked for you. Comment below!

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Get The Facts About Adolescent Melanoma With The Claire Marie Foundation

claire marie foundation

Skincare has always been important to me. I’m not talking about fighting off wrinkles–I’m talking about preserving the health of our skin from the inside out. Now that I’m a mom, it’s even more important to protect my children.

We all know the importance of slathering sunscreen on–but it goes deeper than that. I’ve recently teamed up with The Claire Marie Foundation to do my part to bring awareness to an often misdiagnosed and silent killer: adolescent melanoma.

The Claire Marie Foundation was established in 2014 following the death of Claire Marie Wagonhurst, a sparkling 17-year old who lost a long battle with adolescent melanoma as a result of changes her body went through during puberty. Their mission is to raise awareness, clarity and hope in the fight against adolescent melanoma while celebrating the joy, color and beauty Claire embraced every day.

Here’s what we can do: 

https://vimeo.com/180497659

SOME FACTS: 

claire marie copy

FACT #1: Melanoma is the number two cancer in young people from ages 10-19 and most common cancer in young adults aged 20-30. The signs in children and young adults can look drastically different than what would normally be seen in adults. This makes it often missed or misdiagnosed. Many times it’s an atypical mole on a child that isn’t taken for biopsy.

FACT #2: It’s not always about sun exposure. More research is being conducted about melanoma developing as a result of pregnancy and puberty. This is due to moles becoming more active during hormonal changes.

FACT #3: While fair-skinned children with light colored hair and freckles are still considered to be at greater risk, it has been documented that children with darker pigmented skin and those with skin that is less sun sensitive are developing melanoma especially under the age of 13.

FACT #4: Only a qualified professional who understands pediatric melanoma can make a diagnosis, but immediately have your child evaluated if you observe any of the following signs: (courtesy Melanoma Research Foundation)

  • A bump that itches and bleeds
  • A spot that looks like an unusual wart – sometimes non-pigmented or with a pinkish color
  • An amelanotic lesion – a lump on the skin that isn’t dark or black (like many adult melanomas)
  • A mole that becomes nodular – very bumpy and sticking out far from the rest of the skin
  • A lesion that presents as a nodule, or lump, especially one that has been rapidly enlarging
  • Moles that look strange or large – especially a mole that looks DIFFERENT from your child’s other moles or has more than one color

The Claire Marie Foundation has also launched a program this spring to offer free skin cancer screenings to young people. It offers access to dermatologists who evaluate and if necessary, provide access to remove atypical moles before malignancy develops.

For more information and to donate to fund further research, visit the Claire Marie Foundation website here.

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Watch: The NEW Fertility Smoothie To Get You Knocked Up!

fertility smoothie

photo credit: Erica Hampton Photography

It’s finally here! I am so, so, so excited to welcome you to my YouTube channel (subscribe here!) and into my home. For the first video, I’ve invited my pregnancy guru and wellness coach Lori Bregman to help you get knocked up. Yes, we are talking about fertility!

As you know, I was a bit older when I started thinking pregnancy and fertility so I needed all the help I could get. Lori came in like the saving grace she is and introduced me to her Fertility Smoothie. I drank a glass every single day when prepping to get pregnant and I’m drinking one every day now that I am. This delish recipe is also healthy for your growing baby while in the womb.

fertility smoothie

photo credit: Erica Hampton Photography

Click the video below to get the details +recipe to make your own: 

Ingredients: 

  • 4 oz. almond milk
  • 4 oz. coconut water
  • 1 tsp. coconut butter
  • 1 tbsp. green protein
  • 1 tbsp. acai powder
  • 1 tsp. goji berries
  • 1 tsp. Superfood Greens
  • 1 tsp. ground flax powder
  • 1 tbsp. maca root
  • 1/4 tsp. royal jelly
  • 1/2 cup frozen banana
  • 1/2 cup frozen blueberries
  • 1/4 avocado
  • 1/3 cup ice

Benefits: 

Acai Berries, Goji Berries + Blueberries: Full of antioxidants that promote healthy cell growth and nourish blood. Also helps with sperm quality.

fertility smoothie

photo credit: Erica Hampton Photography

Avocado, Flax Seed + Coconut Butter: Great source of healthy fat.

Powdered Greens + Wheatgrass: Helps lower FSH levels, the hormone that decreases your change for fertility.

Maca Root: Increases libido, energy, and the health of your endocrine system.

Royal Jelly: Balances hormones, reduces stress, and a great source of natural estrogen.

Bee Pollen: Full of vitamins and minerals.

fertility smoothie

photo credit: Erica Hampton Photography

Banana: A great source of potassium and magnesium. It also gives your smoothie that added natural sweetness.

Coconut Water: Keeps your electrolytes in balance while deeply nourishing.

Almond Milk: A great source of calcium and protein.

If you’re in the Los Angeles area, make sure to stop at a Beaming location near you to pick up one of her special “Knocked Up!” smoothies. It’s as delicious as it is beneficial! For more of Lori’s tips and tricks, visit her website for everything pregnancy and beyond.

Also, make sure to subscribe to my YouTube channel here for more videos every week. I have lots and lots of exciting content coming up!

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How To Get The Most Out Of Your Antioxidants

With all the wellness tips out there, it can get pretty overwhelming. What am I supposed to eat? Where do I even get that? Yeah, we’ve all been there. Eating healthy shouldn’t be confusing nor should it be a struggle. When it comes down to it, we should eat what makes our bodies feel and look it’s best. That’s where antioxidants come in.

To put it simply, antioxidants are your body’s best defender. These naturally occurring compounds fight free radicals, assist in healing skin, and boost your immune system (to name a few benefits).

When a healthy, antioxidant-rich diet is combined with a similar skincare routine, it makes a difference.

Here’s what you need to know:

For Your Skin:

Skincare has always been extremely important to me. But it hasn’t always been an easy road. I’ve dealt with acne, melasma, the whole thing! When I first started modeling, I was breaking out pretty badly. It could have been something to do with the stress of traveling or the constant wear of makeup. It also probably didn’t help that my idea of a skincare routine was finding the harshest cleansers around to clear up my face. It didn’t end so pretty! Instead of banishing my breakouts, it made them worse.

Conclusion? Skincare should be just like our diet: simple, easy, and full of nutrient-rich antioxidants. When I partnered with Garnier Skin Active, I knew how important it was to educate women on how a healthy skincare routine can make a huge difference.

When applied to the skin, antioxidants have major beauty and skincare benefits depending on their unique properties. Here’s a quick guide to some of the most common antioxidants (+ my product recommendations from Garnier SkinActive!):

Vitamin C: Can have brightening and skin restoring properties. Reduces the appearance of brown spots and sun damage, increases the effectiveness of your sun screen.

Garnier SkinActive Clearly Brighter Anti-Sun Damage Daily Moisturizer SPF 30 ($14.99)

Vitamin E: Moisture protecting and restoring properties

Garnier SkinActive Clearly Brighter Dark Spot Overnight Peel ($16.99)

Vitamin A: Helps in the fight against anti-aging. Can interrupt the free-radical damage process that causes wrinkling and other signs of aging.

Garnier SkinActive Ultra-Lift 2-In-1 Serum + Moisturizer ($16.99)

On Your Plate:

You know how they say “you are what you eat?” Well, add a bunch of delicious antioxidants into your diet and reap the benefits. Not only do they fight free radicals but can also promote heart health, boost the immune system, and reduce inflammation.

The easiest way to ensure you’re getting enough antioxidant rich foods is to have as much color in your diet as possible. Or as I like to call it, “eating the rainbow.” The more variety and color, the more vitamins, minerals, and essential nutrients you’ll get.

8 antioxidant-rich foods to add to your diet + their unique benefits:

  1. Oranges: The high concentration of Vitamin C in oranges has other benefits beside immune health. The compounds have also been linked to fighting off free radicals that cause cancer (specifically in the mouth) and lowering cholesterol levels.
  2. Grapefruit: A great source of Vitamin A and C. Not only has grapefruit been known to fight off certain types of cancers but the fruit can also help with weight loss by stabilizing blood sugar and keeping you full longer.
  3. Blueberries:This fruit packs a serious punch. A half cup of blueberries can double your normal intake and has fantastic anti-aging effects.
  4. Blackberries: Another berry with major health benefits. Blackberries have been linked to reducing the risks of certain cancers.
  5. Acai Berries:These purple berries strictly grow in the Amazon Rainforest, which is home to the most nutrient-rich foods on the planet. Acai is believed to improve heart health, circulation and prevent clogging.
  6. Spinach: Another reason to get your greens! Spinach has high concentrations of Vitamin C, Vitamin A, and Vitamin E which work together to fight off numerous health problems related to free radicals. This veggie also contains high amounts of Vitamin K which is important for maintaining bone health. Popeye was definitely onto something!
  7. Sweet potatoes: Have you ever wondered what gives a sweet potato that gorgeous orange hue? It’s the beta-carotene, which is responsible for raising the levels of Vitamin A in our blood.
  8. Carrots: Another root vegetable packed with beta-carotene. Carrots have always been a well-known link to eye and vision health.
  9. Walnuts: We’ve all heard of super fruits but what about super nuts? Walnuts, specifically, contain an antioxidant called polyphenols which are masters at fighting free radicals pertaining to cancer. Be careful though! Nuts are loaded with calories so be mindful of your intake.
  10. Grapes: While all grapes have antioxidant content, it’s the red variety that packs the most. They contain an antioxidant compound called Resveratrol, which has been linked to fighting cancer and heart disease. And, yes. Your glass of red wine counts (in moderation, of course!)

Here’s a yummy antioxidant-rich recipe by one of my favorite superfood chefs, Julie Morris:

photo credit: Oliver Barth | Food Photography LA

Acai Salsa

Ingredients: 

  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice (from about 1 lime)
  • 1 tablespoon acai powder
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon agave nectar, or liquid sweetener of choice
  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt
  • pinch of  cayenne pepper
  • 1 cup blackberries, halved width-wise
  • 1 cup mango, finely diced
  • 1 Anaheim pepper, trimmed, seeded, and finely diced
  • 1 jalapeño pepper, trimmed, seeded, and finely diced
  • 1 green onion, white and light green parts sliced thin

Directions:

In a medium bowl, whisk together the lime juice, acai, olive oil, agave, sea salt and cayenne. Add all the remaining ingredients, and toss until combined. Chill 30 minutes before serving

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6 Workouts To Stream From Home

streaming workouts

Just because you don’t have a gym membership or class pass doesn’t mean you can’t have access to similar classes and results. You can now stream a lot of your favorite workouts right in the comfort of your own home. It’s convenient, cost-efficient, and let’s be honest–streaming your workouts at home makes you way more likely to sneak a workout into your day.

I also travel a lot which makes it really, really, really hard to either 1) find a gym or 2) fit a workout into my schedule. As long as you have WiFi, you can stream wherever and whenever. Most programs can be accessed from laptop, iPad, or your phone. I’ve definitely turned my hotel room in a gym quite a few times.

Even if you have a gym membership, streaming your workouts can be a great supplement to mix up your routine. Studies actually show that changing it up a bit challenges new muscles and improves your total fitness. Plus, boredom can lead to burnout! When you mix it up, it keeps it exciting.

Click on the links below to get streaming and start sweating:

1. Barre3

streaming workouts

PRICE: $15/a month (basic), $25/a month (plus), & $59/a month (premium) 

Barre workouts aren’t just trendy–they are highly effective, too. It’s such a great core workout and super low impact which makes barre workouts perfect for just about anyone. With an online Barre3 subscription, you get a new video every week plus access to the whole library. The trainers break everything down with simple step-by-step instructions and even offer weekly tips.

2. Yoga Glo 

yoga glo

PRICE: $18/a month 

Yoga always makes me feel calm and confident. And you can truly do it anywhere, anytime. YogaGlo is a fantastic streaming site for yoga at any skill level. If you’re a rookie, these classes will teach you all the moves you need! The best part is that all of their yoga instructions on the site are some of the best in the country. They even offer yoga lectures and workshops to stream, too.

3. The NW Method

nicole winhofferPRICE: FREE

I can’t rave enough about my trainer, Nicole Winhoffer. Her program and studio, the NW Method, is based in NYC but can now be streamed online! I’m so, so, so excited. If you want a fun workout, she’s your girl. Nicole’s method is focused around combining the mind, body, and soul through movement and dance while also targeting and toning muscle groups.

But, don’t let the dance portion scare you off. Nicole breaks it down step-by-step and makes it super simple. I promise you–you’ll be hooked.

4. Ballet Beautiful 

ballet beautiful

PRICE: $39.99/ a month 

Created by a professional ballerina, Ballet Beautiful mixes the grace of classical ballet with a great workout that tones and tightens your entire body. I’ve always wanted to get into ballet workouts but to be honest–I’ve always been a little intimidated. I’m definitely not a dancer! A subscription to Ballet Beautiful gives you pre-recorded streaming videos that include targeted toning exercises, stretches, and cardio workouts. There’s also an option to get a more customized, interactive workout with a live instructor over Skype. I mean, who doesn’t want to look like a prima ballerina?

5. Booya 

booya

PRICE: $9.99/a month (+ first month free!)

Like I said, mixing up your workouts will help you keep up the routine. It makes it fun! That’s where Booya Fitness comes in. This program is a subscription-based online website that streams videos of all skill levels and class varieties. It’s like the Netflix of getting a bangin’ hot bod! They also include customized workout plans to give you the results you want. Booya even has “Broga” (bro yoga) classes for the men in your life who want to work on their flexibility. They have literally EVERYTHING!

 

6. Daily Burn 

daily burn

PRICE: $14.95/a month (+ first month free!)

Daily Burn is another subscription-based website that goes live with a new video every morning. Each 30-minute, full body workout is beginner-friendly and available in a library to stream anytime, anywhere. The first month is free–so try it out!

No more excuses! These streaming workouts make it easy to fit a workout into your schedule and allow you to go at your own pace. Let me know if you try any of these out. I’d love to hear about your results! 

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How To Turn Your Workout Into A Dance Party

how to make your workout a dance party 

I’ll be honest—there are days when exercising is LITERALLY the last thing I want to do. To motivate myself, I make my workouts as fun as possible. If there’s anyone who knows how to make fitness a party it’s my trainer, Nicole Winhoffer. She’s definitely taught me the ways!

nicole winhoffer

Nicole has single-handedly kicked my ass, whipped me into shape, and helped me shed some major pounds. Her program, NW Method, serves as a way to combine the mind, body, and soul through movement and dance while also targeting and toning muscle groups.

The combination of positive energy, fun choreography, and a killer playlist make the NW Method different from the rest. In my opinion, it’s like the best dance party I’ve ever been to! If you aren’t able to catch a class of hers in NYC, she’s now streaming her workouts online to do anytime, anywhere.

So let’s dim the lights, slip on that crop top, and pump up the music. Here’s Nicole’s favorite playlist to get you started (click links to download.):

  1. I Got You-Shaggy feat. Jovi Rockwell
  2. This Is What You Came For-Calvin Harris feat. Rihanna (Dillon Francis Remix)
  3. Let Me Love You- Ariana Grande feat. Lil Wayne
  4. Panda-Desiigner
  5. Needed Me-Rihanna
  6. Freedom-Beyonce feat. Kendrick Lamar
  7. Sex With Me-Rihanna
  8. Waves-Kanye West
  9. Controlla-Drake
  10. Trap Queen-Fetty Wap
  11. Consideration-Rihanna feat. SZA
  12. THat Part-Schoolboy Q feat. Kanye West
  13. Cut It- O.T Genasis feat. Young Dolph
  14. She Knows- J.Cole
  15. One Dance-Drake feat. Wizkid & Kyla
  16. Peaches And Cream- 112 feat. P.Diddy
  17. Run The World-Beyonce (Dave Aude Club Remix)
  18. Drunk In Love- Beyonce
  19. Na Na- Trey Songz
  20. Love Drought- Beyonce
  21. Sweet Dreams- Beyonce

Here are some extra tips from Nicole on how to keep your workouts fun (& fierce!):

1. Wear something that makes you feel sexy. I like to wear street clothes in my workout because it makes me feel like I’m at the club!

2. Use the app Shazaam (download here) when you’re out so you can add them to your workout playlist.

3. Grab a buddy! Doing your workouts in groups creates more energy.

4. Stream your favorite workouts with your buddy. I just dropped NW Live Streaming last month! Now you have a full hour of workouts with new moves and amazing music right at home.

5. Play your favorite pop star…and then workout like one!

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