Part 2: The Skincare Products That Got Rid Of My Acne

A couple of months back I shared a blog post on how I got rid of my acne using natural remedies and as the title indicates, this is part two. I wanted to separate the posts because I feel like there’s a lot to cover and hopefully it feels more organized this way.

So let’s get straight to it! Aside from the natural remedies I shared on this Blog Post, I used these skincare products on a daily basis (except for one, keep reading) and that combination is what finally gave me results!

CLEANSER. I used 2 different ones, the La Roche-Posay Effaclar Gel Cleanser for Oily Skin and First Aid Beauty Face Cleanser. Let me explain, I like doing this because some days I wear a lot more makeup than others, not to mention that depending on how healthy I had been eating that week, my stress levels and having my period or not, I might have more or less blemishes that week. So it makes sense to me to switch between the two as I need it. I use the La Roche-Posay morning and night on the days that I didn’t wear a lot of makeup (or none at all) and when I felt my acne was looking more irritated and needed that extra help. And I used the First Aid Beauty on the days when I wore more makeup, my acne was there but not super angry looking but still needed something to deep clean my face and leave it soft at the same time. They both work great, are very affordable and they always last me a long time.

Pre-Serums Solutions…

The Ordinary Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1%. I used this one right after the toner I mentioned in Part 1 of this post. I had heard amazing things about this brand for a while and turns out they’re all true. I ordered this online and from the second I used it I haven’t put it down. It did take almost 2 weeks for me to really notice a difference but I had heard that before so I knew I had to patient. After that the improvements started to come fast. The tiny little bumps on my skin are about 80% gone (and I plan on keep using it), the texture of my skin is so much smoother and has helped reduce my acne a ton. But the one I didn’t believe would happen was reduce my crater like pores (not even kidding they’re huge around the skin near my nose) and now they’re normal looking. Like how???

The Ordinary AHA 30% + BHA 2% Peeling Solution. This one came along about 2 months after I started using the Niacinamide, I realized I could trust this brand so I figured why not try another one of their products plus THEY ARE SO CHEAP, it’s insane!! Warning… this product is extremely strong so please don’t use it for longer than 10min or on broken skin. I started with once a week until my skin got used to it (and wore a LOT of sunscreen) then switched to twice a week. This one helped with my acne, acne scars and actually exfoliated my skin. I noticed that it gives me a more glass-like face if that makes sense, super smooth! ***In my experience this brand is super effective (and cheap) but please make sure you do your research! Because you really do need to know how to use their products.

*SIDE NOTE: The following 2 products are not acne related BUT I 100% believe that if you pick 1-2 products that are designed to fight or prevent acne, then you shouldn’t need every single product in your beauty routine to be meant for acne prone skin. I have tried doing it and honestly it only ended up drying up my skin, creating other skin problems because I wasn’t taking care of anything other than acne (meaning dullness, uneven skin tone, wrinkle prevention, elasticity, etc.) which would stress my skin and act up by giving me even more acne –ugh no thank you! So I relied on these next two products to take care of all that.

SERUM. Clarins Double Serum. As I mentioned above, this one is not acne related but this serum is so hydrating and most of all it feels very soothing on my skin. My mom has used Clarins for years, so I finally gave it a try last year and now it’s my favourite serum. This one is also for all skin types.

MOISTURIZER. Not acne related, but I am truly in love with the Elemis Pro-Collagen Marine Cream (anti-winkle cream). It is the most luxurious feeling ever! Ever, ever… Like if it wasn’t on the pricier side, I would seriously rub it head to toe. It’s crazy moisturizing without being super oily, but it’s so much more! The only way I can think to describe it is that it’s instant real life Facetune/Photoshoop for your face. That said, I know not everyone wants/needs an anti-wrinkle cream or a moisturiser that is pricey so when I run out and don’t feel like spending that much, I buy the Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Cream as an alternative. It’s of course not the same feeling, but I do love how water-like it is, super light, very very refreshing and does the job perfectly or the First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Cream Intense Hydration , they’re both equally good if you ask me.

SPF. I’ve talked in great length before about SPFs and how important they are, which ones I love and why. The one that I have been using most consistently is the La Roche-Posay Anthelion Ultra Light Sunscreen Fluid Extreme is SPF 60 and more recently the 100% Mineral Invincible Setting Powder to reapply through out the day.

And that’s it! In combination with the first post of this Series I wrote, that is every single thing I did to transform my skin. No spas and sadly no facials, it was all done at home and staying CONSISTENT with each and every step. I know not every single product will work for everyone but like I said, you have to give a routine TIME to work, watch what you eat and be patient. I promise you there is an answer out there for you so don’t give up. I truly hope this helps others like it helped me. Let me know your thoughts below,

New Video: Casual Outfit Ideas

Never thought I would be saying this, but over the years I’ve learned to love dressing comfortable and now I hardly ever go back. So I put together a few easy outfits to get you inspired…

Visit my YouTube channel for more videos <3 And don’t forget to Subscribe to be the first to see new videos I upload, I will be giving away tons of goodies at random so don’t miss out!!

I Got A Lash Lift + Tint And Here’s What Happened…

I’ve been wanting to try this for a long time! And I’ve heard of so many people loving their new lashes, all about how it saves them time in the morning or not needing any makeup at all after getting a lash lift and tint done so with my birthday and a trip coming up, I figured it would be the perfect time to do it! 

I did my research, asked other people (even asked people on my IG Stories) and finally found a reliable place close to where I live, with great reviews and with fair prices so I booked an appointment.

MY MAIN CONCERNS AS A FIRST TIMER:

-That I might be allergic to the formula ( I have super sensitive eyes ).

-The 2 hour long process ( I can’t stay still for that long ). 

-That my lashes were not long enough to give it a nice effect. 

-That the tint wouldn’t be that noticeable on me since my lashes are already dark-ish.

-That my lashes would end up looking AND feeling crazy fake.

So anyways… I went in last week, a day before my trip to Cabo and I got both the Lash Lift and Tint.

WHAT TO EXPECT:

I arrived without any makeup on, but either way she wiped my eyes before she started. Then taped my bottom lashes (eek… made me a little anxious), it doesn’t hurt at all and within 2 min I forgot about it for the rest of the process. At some point I did get a slight itchy sensation, but it was mostly from having this foreign thing touching my eyelids and lashes. She also kept brushing my lashes a few different times to make sure they were all spread out and perfect. Then she went ahead and applied a cold gel-like substance to my upper lids, then applied a solution to my upper lashes. After a few minutes she applied the other solutions to lift and tint while brushing my lashes yet again and that was it! I was told appointments are recommended every 6-8 weeks, she removed the tape from my eyes and handed me a mirror.

RESULTS / THOUGHTS:

Within the first 15min I was relieved to see I wasn’t going to be allergic to the formula. My eyes are super sensitive so I would have felt it right away! A week later I still haven’t had a reaction and don’t think I’ll be getting one at this point.

The process did take close to 2 hours! Which drove me a little crazy to be honest, but I should mention that I don’t really enjoy things like these… getting my nails done, getting a massage, doing anything to my hair, etc. I get them done every now and then because I like the results, but the process is always a drag for me. However the place was extremely relaxing and she was great! It’s just an Erika thing. So if you’re like me, be prepared to be there for a while (or at least that was my experience).

Also I was right about the tint not being too noticeable. My lashes are already dark-ish brown so if yours are the same and they’re charging extra for that part, then go ahead and skip it! Not worth the extra cost. I paid $80 and the price was the same with or without the tint so I decided to go for it.

NOW FOR THE ACTUAL REVEAL…

I was sort of right about my lashes being a little too short BUT at the same time it is a very noticeable change. Please keep reading. What I mean by this is that the expectation I had was that my lashes would look dramatically different, almost like when you get the more natural looking Lash Extension, you know what I mean? But I feel that a big part of this expectation is because 99% of the Lash Lift photos out there are of people with long lashes (not fair or helpful in my opinion) then it’s no wonder you (or at least me) kind of forget your own reality. So when I opened my eyes and looked in the mirror my first thought was “Oh is that it??” I walked to my car, got in and immediately pulled down the mirror and stared at my lashes for a while! And then I started noticing things like… “Okay I like how they’re all perfectly spaced out, they do look and feel natural (even though I wasn’t supposed to touch them yet) and most importantly they did look 100% lifted.

Fast forward to two days later when I was now allowed to get them wet and use mascara, waking up to my eyelashes looking so nice and lifted first thing in the morning was SUCH A GOOD FEELING! I always joke that I look like a teen boy because I’m all skinny looking, have no real curves AND the 3 lashes I have are all short and straight! So growing up this all made me look even more like my brother Edgar LOL so I always always wear mascara. But after getting them Lifted/Tinted last week, if I don’t wear mascara they still look like I put 1 good coat on and they look perfectly curled and nice. They don’t look extra long by any means, my length is what it’s always been but I do look more feminine now. And when I do apply mascara I noticed that it goes on way easier, I don’t need to apply as much and they actually look way nicer than they’ve ever looked. Bottom line?? I would do it again. I can definitely suck it up for 2 hrs if I can go out and not need a single drop of makeup on my face but my SPF.

Have you tried this before? If so, did you have a different experience? Let me know your thoughts below, I’m curious to know. Also, feel free to head to my IG Stories to take a closer look at the final results! As always thank you for reading,

New Video: Bike Ride Guide In Venice, California

Venice, California is such a beautiful and fun area to explore, I recently did a little bike ride around the area and of course turned it into a video! I uploaded it to my new YouTube channel but I wanted to leave it here too in case anyone is looking into visiting Venice this Summer.

The video is more detailed but these are the Key Spots:

  • Start at Abbot Kinney Blvd on the south side. It’s a beautiful street with so many cute Shops which I recommend exploring if you’re looking for unique jewelry or little home decor pieces! Abbot Kinney is my favorite for those little hidden gems. There’s also lots of fun Restaurants, Cafés and plenty of Art Work all around to make this bike ride more than entertaining. But I would just grab a juice or coffee and save the meal for after the bike ride 🙂
  • Then ride down Westminster Ave to the Venice Boardwalk for a perfect bike ride by the beach! There is a ton of activity happening around you in this area and of course it’s a mandatory visit if you’re in California.
  • Once you get to the end of Venice Boardwalk Park head up to the Venice Canals through Winward Ave, turn right on Venice Way and another right on Dell Ave and you’ll hit the Venice Canals. This part of the bike ride is way more relaxing and quiet but equally fun and so worth the visit! Honestly it’s my personal favorite area to take photos.
  • Once you’ve explored the canals and crossed the bridges you can head back through Venice Way and ride up through Andalusia Ave until you hit Abbot Kinney. And that’s it, we’re back where we first started! Great time to grab some food and chill.

I had a lot of fun making this Video and hope it helps you on your next Venice visit!!

Thanks for stopping by,

Part 1: The Natural Remedies That Got Rid Of My Acne

Let’s talk about acne, everyone’s best friend. I’ve been sharing my experience with skincare for a few years now and have mentioned a couple of skincare products that have helped me but I’ve never really shared the natural remedies that got rid of my acne, so here go! There’s a lot to cover to be ready to take notes.

To give you some insight, I have combination skin and would mostly get acne on my forehead, also chin and neck area and I know the last two are more hormonal but these steps helped with that as well. My type of acne is mostly white heads with the occasional cystic acne on my cheeks and chin.

Okay so I did a few different things but I truly believe that the combination of all of them was key to getting rid of it. The first 3 are diet based and the next 3 are natural topical treatments so make sure you carefully read them all:

  1. I took a Food Intolerance Test + went Dairy free. I wrote a blog post last year on how and why I changed my diet so you can give it a read HERE to find out more details. But basically by taking this test, my doctor and I where able to pin point which foods were causing problems in my body such as Dairy, which turns out was a big contributor to my acne. There were many other foods that where causing me issues such as nausea, fatigue, rashes, among others and clearing those out of my system undoubtedly helped my skin, but I’ll focus on the one that helped the most with my acne. After I went diary free, I noticed my skin was less inflamed after the first week, I was shocked. The longer I kept staying away from dairy the less and less acne I started getting, and the ones I already had where healing so much faster so now I make it a priority. But whatever your trigger might be, I think a Food Intolerance Test is a good way of finding out which foods to avoid to have healthier skin.
  2. I cut Meat out of my diet for 6 weeks. Okay so this one was hard for me, but the results where crazy good. By eating tons of veggies, fruits, some legumes and Seitan and Tofu to get my protein, I got the healthiest looking skin of my life! I am not kidding or exaggerating, I’m no expert so I’m not sure of why this worked so well, but trust me it was like a re-boot for my skin. I started seeing results closer to 2 weeks in, of course it was specially good for my hormonal acne. My plan was to do it only for 4 weeks but after seeing how good my skin was doing, I decided to extend it for as long as I could. Obviously as you can tell, I only lasted 2 more weeks because I actually do love meat. But now knowing what I do, I’ve cut way back on red meat and eat mostly fish. Honestly my skin isn’t as nice as it was without meat in my diet but for now I can live with it.
  3. I incorporated Probiotics. If you eat tons of processed foods or those lacking in probiotics then you’re more prone to have gut problems. Gut health has an important role to play when protecting your skin from the damages of the outside world so again, you want to heal and nourish your skin from the inside out. For me it was a natural step to take because I went from consuming a lot of dairy products to none and my body was definitely feeling the change. That’s when I decided to update my probiotic source and found a daily supplement I could take. Now, I know there are many food sources where you can get probiotics but personally I’m not a fan of them, however if you find some you love go for it! But for those who prefer a pill like me, I bought some at Target and it’s worked great.
  4. I used Witch Hazel as Toner. I buy Thayers Witch Hazel Alove Vera Formula “Original” at my local market, it’s cheap and so soothing. It works as a natural astringent because it helps to remove oils (without getting that super dry feeling afterwards). It also calms down inflammation and acne areas, my skin even feels way smoother but one of the biggest changes for me is that evens out my skin tone! I feel like my SK-II Treatment Essence is also amazing at making my skin smooth and to even out my overall tone but at a MUCH higher price. I’m still a fan, but I mean it’s $99 vs $9.50 so it’s your choice. HOW TO APPLY: I use a cotton pad and moist it with Witch Hazel, then I gently pat all over my face, neck and chest. I leave it on just like I would any other toner.
  5. I used Tea Tree Oil as Spot Treatment. I’ve mentioned this before on the blog but I’ll officially say it again, this is the best natural way to spot treat acne. You should definitely dilute it with coconut oil or something similar before you apply it to avoid damaging your skin as it is strong, but it works wonders! HOW TO APPLY: I mix a bit of coconut oil and a drop of Tea Tree oil and apply it directly on my acne with a cotton swab and leave it on. Don’t over do it, just enough to cover. I realized that it helps to get rid of acne faster. Sometimes it will help it pop if it needs to and sometimes it simply takes it away before it even gets to that point. But either way it never fails to speed up the process. Also if the skin did brake I apply a bit extra afterwards to clean it and help it heal quicker! After doing this I saw that acne started to recur less and less.
  6. I used Raw Manuka Honey 15+. I buy this at my local Sprouts Market. Raw Manuka Honey is very moisturising on for the skin, it also has beneficial antioxidants and works as an antibacterial, so it leaves your skin feeling smooth and with fewer bacteria which means less chance of infected pores, which means less acne. BUT you do want to pay attention to the grading system so look for the UMF or MGO rating on the label. For acne purposes make sure you’re using a minimum of UMF 10+ or MGO 261+ (attention: not just a +number, it has to say UMF or MGO so you know it’s certified). I personally used UMF 18+ (in MGO grading it would be 692) to make sure I had enough levels of antibacterial properties and it worked great. HOW TO APPLY: Start with a clean face, wet your hands and lightly dab your face and neck so the honey applies easier. I used it as a mask on my face and neck 2-3 times a week for about 15-20min and rinsed off with water.
  7. Turmeric Drink before bedtime. I started making “Golden Milk” but used Oat Milk instead of dairy. You can also drink Turmeric Tea, I just like the Golden Milk recipe better, but the point is to fight off acne from the inside. Turmeric is well known as an anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant and anti-bacterial and I found that by consistently drinking it my acne started looking much better. *I buy my Turmeric powder at an herb and spice shop in LA because I feel that it’s more reliable and potent than the ones you find in supermarkets, plus it’s cheaper. But I’ll leave that to your discretion. DIRECTIONS: 1) Pour 1 1/2 cups of the milk of your choice into a small pot on medium heat. 2) Add 1 tsp ground Turmeric, a pinch of black pepper (this activates the turmeric and helps your body absorb the curcumin), add 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon (also an anti-inflammatory) and add honey to your liking. 3) Let it simmer for about 10min. Enjoy nice and warm! I would make this every night. Now that my skin is better I drink it about 3-4 times a week for it’s other benefits and to help me sleep.
  8. Staying consistent with a remedy. The thing with skin is that you have to give it time for things to work! The human body is AMAZING and it works really hard everyday to fight off infections, inflammations and basically to regenerate itself so naturally aside from needing to be properly nourished, it also needs TIME to adjust to a new skincare routine. So whether you’re trying these steps above or your own or any skincare product, please don’t give up after a week or two, try to be more patient. Believe me, if you’re switching remedies and products every week, nothing will work for you. I’m a firm believer than you have to give things at least 3 weeks if not a month to see and feel results. So staying consistent and simple with your remedies/routines is key, it truly helped me.

I made a conscious plan to follow all of these steps within the same time period and around month 3 I felt like I had new skin. I still get a pimple or two around my period but of course that can’t be avoided! So far though, my skin has been feeling so much better. To whoever might be reading this, I know it’s frustrating to live with acne and you can feel so discouraged and tired of nothing working for you but there’s always a solution out there so please don’t lose hope! I truly wish you find this helpful and if there’s natural remedies that have worked for you that I didn’t mention please comment below so we can all help each there out. Part 2 of this post will be up soon, so keep an eye for that. I send you all my best!!

Spring Accessories I’m Loving!

I know it’s not officially Spring yet, but April is here and the weather is definitely getting a lot warmer here in Southern California, so that calls for new Spring Accessories!

As you may know, 99% of the time I wear yellow gold jewelry so that’s what I’m linking but I know many of the brands will carry these in Rose Gold, Yellow Gold and White Gold accents so look out for those. But anyways, getting back to it… I’m sure you’ve seen by now that the Seashell accessory trend came back and I fully support it! I’ve gladly given my money away for years to anything that’s Mermaid themed (not ashamed!) and now is no different so I included plenty of those and some other cool pendants I’ve been wearing non-stop. So here are my favorite styles, they’re perfect to welcome Spring and even for Festival Season!!

I’ve linked below some from Free People, since I always end up shopping their cute accessories. I also linked some from Lulu DK brand which I LOVE! I first discovered them while I was shopping for a gift for Tom’s sister at Nordstrom, they had the coolest Spinning Pendants with written messages on them and I thought they were so beautiful! Ever since then I can’t stop wearing that brand as I’m sure you’ve seen in so many of my IG posts. And lastly I also included some Forever 21 pieces in case you’re looking for some cute but more affordable options. Enjoy!

Free People Charmed Layering Necklace ( Click HERE for link)

Free People Seashell Anklet Set (Click HERE for link)



Free People Waikiki Collar ( Click HERE for link)
Forever 21 Seashell Bracelet Set (Click HERE for link)


Forever 21 Seashell Drop Earrings (Click HERE for link)
Lulu DK Amulet Necklace (Click HERE for link)


Lulu DK Monthstone Necklace ( Click HERE for link)

These are just some of my faves right now, but I am obsessed with jewelry so I will come back and link more amazing brands and styles I love! Hope you found something you loved and let me know what you think in the comments below!

My 5 Favorite Travel Hacks

I don’t know if you’re a new reader or if you’ve been with me from the beginning (either way thank you for being here) but if someone asked me what’s the one thing that’s defined my life I would say without a doubt that it’s all the traveling I’ve done! I’ve been truly lucky to have been able to travel with friends and by myself too many times to count, but I also grew up all over the world with my family never really settling down in one place. We moved every 1-2 years, sometimes every 6 months and others we moved within the same month and that has taught me so much! I am grateful to my parents for giving me and my brother these life experiences that have made me who I am today.

So as I was writing down ideas for new blog posts the other day, I realized that I’ve never really shared any traveling tips on the blog so here are some helpful hacks I’ve learned one the years to keep in mind for your next travels:

*I’m aware that the first one runs long, but trust me you need to consider this…

Travel Hack No. 1: Rent a car to get from/to the airport. If you live right next to the airpot then obviously disregard this, but that’s not usually the case. I’m here to share that it’s cheaper to rent a car from your local Car Rental service provider and drop it off that same day at the airport than to pay for an Uber/Lyft or even worst to leave your car at the airport and pay parking for the week –that gets expensive fast. This of course also works from airport to home because again these car rental providers are everywhere! So it’s easy to drop off the car rental and take an Uber from there to your home or have a loved one pick you up at that nearby location.

To give you an insight… Last time I did this, I rented a car for $26 (tax included) from San Diego to Orange County (about 90miles away). I booked it online because it’s cheaper than waiting to get to their facility and I had of course chosen the lowest rate expecting to receive a small Fiesta, who cares right? But instead I was nicely surprised that they gave me a new Jeep Renegade 4×4, more than enough space for me and my 2 pieces of luggage. I had checked UBER and LYFT and with either it would have been close to $100 one way. In this case it’s also cheaper than taking the Amtrak train, and cheaper than the expense of gas from driving myself back and forth and having to pay the parking structure for however many days –This of course varies depending on where you live, but you get the idea. It is also a better option than having to ask a friend or my boyfriend to drive the 2 hours down there (that’s if there’s no traffic) and then a 2hr drive back just to pick me up. This also is not taking into account that during peek seasons and even holidays, flights tend to get delayed and having to re-arrange pick ups last minute is just one more thing I don’t want to worry about when I’m already stressed. So truly, this is just so much more convenient!! Next time you need to head to the airport consider this option, I live by it.

Travel Hack No. 2: Avoid over packing by taking photos of the outfits you’re taking. I swear it’s not a blogger thing! It might sound over the top at first, but hear me out because I started doing this years before I ever started blogging and it 100% works! If you take a photo of exactly what shoes you’ll need with what outfit plus handbag and accessories included, then it inevitably prevents you from over packing. Simple as that! I do however always pack a dressier option regardless if I think I’ll need it or not, it’s just smart to be prepared rather than feel underdressed, right? So what I do is I wear the FULL outfit and literally take a full body mirror selfie and then roll the clothes. That way I know that every single item I’ve packed is worth the space in my luggage, plus it’s not like you have to make a cute face… Think of it as taking inventory so it really just takes a second! This also helps me see if I can re-style an item with several other outfits therefore saving me tons of space. *Don’t forget to pack several Fresh Scent Packets in your suitcase to keep things smelling fresh, you’ve probably heard this plenty but I always do it and feel so grateful I did.

Travel Hack No. 3: I use Muslin bags to protect my shoes inside the luggage. I bought a pack from amazon, but I know they sell them at Michaels and Joan’s and all of those craft stores. They’re cheap and so worth it! Because I don’t know about you, but it just kills me to put new shoes next to things inside my lugage that might dent and damage them or what’s worse, let the dirty soles touch ANYTHING else I’ve packed (I get anxiety just thinking about it). But these thin little bags with their cotton strings won’t take up any extra space, they’re easy to wash and really do keep your bffs safe.

Travel Hack No. 4: The Travel Pillow with Hoodie that actually works. Take it from me, I DO NOT sleep on planes, I have been flying since I was 1 year old and my mother can testify that my mind and body cannot relax on a plane. That is until she recently gifted me a Pillow with a Hoodie attached, I’m sure many of you have seen them but I’ve truly figured out what makes a travel pillow work! The hoodie part needs to be long enough where it basically covers my face down to the tip of my nose so I don’t feel claustrophobic and the pillow part needs to be the higher/taller memory foam one so I don’t feel like I’m choking, I swear this combo makes it easier to tune out the rest of the world. I know there’s eye masks but I get headaches and migraines ALL the time and sleeping masks always end up giving me a pulsing pain on the temples after a while, so no thank you! Of course, you could argue that you could just wear a normal hoodie with your travel pillow but there’s something about both items being attached that keeps your head nice and levelled allowing you to actually fall asleep without the annoying pillow slipping off or moving around. It’s been life changing for me. I guess you would have to go try a couple different ones to see which is your best fit because some necks might be longer than others but look for these details and you’ll never travel the same!

Travel Hack No. 5: I use Stopwatch on my iPhone. This one is simple but it keeps me from going insane. How? Well let’s say my flight will be 5 hrs and 20min, so the moment we are actually taking off (not a second sooner) I press start on Stopwatch, close the app and wait as long as I possibly can to peek at how much longer the flight will be (if you have an android you will find the option as well). I know it’s a mental game, but it really keeps me occupied on other things and distracts me from how much I do not want to be there. I also make it so the timer goes off about 25min before landing that way I have time to put myself together, freshen up my face with any face mists I have, fix my hair, put away my things, etc.

And lastly guys, there’s nothing more wasteful than coming home with foreign change in your pocket so why not donate it to someone in need? Before you leave a country do a good deed and think about giving it to a homeless person. It’s of little loss for you but a huge help to those who have nothing.

Hope you found these hacks helpful on your next travels and if you do apply any of them you can tell everyone Erika shared it with you lol. And please don’t be shy and let me know, it would make me so happy! Safe travels everyone.

Thanks for stopping by at Wander With Love,

Let’s talk: Why INTENTION matters

I always try to lead my life with focused intention on what I wish to accomplish and what energy I want around me. I might not share this on my daily IG Stories but it is something I fully believe in and I think everyone should do the same, why? Because when we are mindful on intention in relation to everything we do, we remain focused on achieving our goals faster and more effectively. Think about it… Intention is the thoughts, beliefs and emotions in which we approach people, opportunities, new challenges (the good and bad kind) and life all together, we basically breathe it in every single day so why not focus on making it strong and beneficial rather than passive or even obstructive?

This is why it is important to be mindful of how we act towards others and ourselves because remember, you receive whatever you put out there so even our feelings become our very essence and energy and you want to make sure it’s not a toxic one. 

It is very easy to spot a person that goes through life as a downer, someone who simply chooses to see everything and everyone out to get them only to sink deeper into their desolation. But just the same we can spot someone who without evidence of circumstances getting better, they still manage to see things for how they could be, see every great possibility out there and sooner or later find themselves living that life. One of these two examples is living life with focused intention to succeed and be happy.

If however you find yourself surrounded by others who do make those life choices… that environment is just as toxic even if you don’t live your life that way. This last example can be particularly hard to be in because you might be close to this person, love them and want to be there for them but hard as you try, it is on THEM to make the effort to change NOT YOU so you should not allow foreign energies to cloud your own. In this case take a step back, reevaluate what you want to attract into your life and take positive action towards that, trust me, in the end this helps the other person too.

Truth is nothing was ever built or existed without intention, so how can we practice being mindful about it?

In small ways but doing it consistently everyday. You could:

  1. Start the habit of repeating to yourself every morning what you want for your life for a few minutes before you even get out of bed. Really, while you’re tossing and turning take a deep breath and let the message sink in. I think this is an excellent way to start your day with the right mindset.
  2. Or try it at night before bedtime as a way to cleanse your mind of negative thoughts and attitudes from others or yourself that held you back that day. Go to bed feeling serene and recharged to wake up feeling truly rested.
  3. Search for clarity while you work out. Whether it’s yoga, boxing class, going to the gym, running, barre class… whichever one you enjoy. Allow in that moment of feeling powerful and motivated to run deep through you and envision that intention touching EVERY part of your life. Do this until you can see it clearly, until it feels like second nature, a part of who you are.
  4. While you enjoy your cup of coffee/tea. In the morning or on your break time, use those few minutes to yourself to practice being aware of your energy, of intention.
  5. Or it can be as simple as while you’re cleaning your home or making dinner. I find it that while I’m doing those familiar tasks, my mind tends to wander off, my body goes on automatic mode and I end up reflecting deeper on whatever I’m dealing with that week. So why not use that productive time to train my mind to be mindful of intention. 

It all starts with an intention, then it’s a behaviour, then a habit until it is the very essence of who you are. So try leading with intention and you will see what a big change it will be on your small day-to-day goals, on your long-term career goals and in your relationships in general.

Hope you found this post helpful! And if you have other ways to practice this please share them in the comments below so we can all learn from one another.

Thank you for stopping by,

xo Erika

My First Video + Youtube Channel

After a very, very, VERY long time of wanting to share video content on YouTube I am happy to say that I’ve finally done it! I posted my very first Video this past Sunday as a quick intro and plan on posting more from now on. I think for the longest time I was stuck in my usual –overthinking everything a million times– type of behaviour BUT I’ve decided this year I just need to go for the things I want to do. And not just that but do them without the pressure of wanting everything to be absolutely PERFECT, I mean hello Virgo here… So I know it will be a challenge but I’m doing my best to put an end to that habit and focus on what I want to get done.

This first video is very short & sweet as I’m still learning the whole editing process but I’ll work hard to keep improving! I am over the moon excited to start bringing everyone along with me this year, so without too much chit-chat here it is…

Let me know what you think and don’t forget to Subscribe! And as always thank you so much for stopping by…

5 Valentines Date Ideas that are actually fun!

While I’m here sitting at home trying to figure out how to fix my life aka my Blog! I realised Valentines Day is about 3 weeks away so of course the inspo and date ideas start now!

This is a –couple date ideas– type of post BUT I have friendship one coming up and trust me it’s a really good one!! I’m actually counting down the days until it goes live <3 But for all the couples out there, I’ve got you!

DATE IDEA No. 1 Teach your significant other a new skill. It’s a day to be couple-y and it’s all about quality time together and getting closer, right? So you could let them teach you something they love or vice versa. It can be anything! Maybe you love to paint, or making candles, playing video games, doing DIY projects, play an instrument, … As long as you keep the activity simple, teaching them should be fun! Example? Let’s see.. Tom loves playing golf but I’ve NEVER tried it so just think baby steps people –I’m not going to sign up for the full thing right away, but I can join him at the driving range and have him teach me! In fact, I can already see us both laughing as I miss hitting the ball 9 out of 10 times, but you get the idea.

DATE IDEA No. 2: Meet up with other couples and make it a group thing! Whether you guys go to your favorite Rooftop bar for food +drinks, do a game night (Most likely.. app is my fave right now), go to a Comedy night club, go Paddle boarding as a group if you’re are feeling active (think groupon for these last two, they always has great deals), or whatever it is you all enjoy doing together. This is a great way to take the pressure off and just do something fun with your love and friends.

DATE IDEA No. 3: Go on a weekend trip. Tom and I do this often for no good reason at all and we always have the best time! So why not for Valentines? Plus the process of planning gives you both something to look forward to and even when it’s somewhere close by, there’s still the little thrill of being on vacay. When it comes to little getaways, we usually keep it very light and simple… we agree on the dates that work for both, we book a place near things we wish to see & we do our research to know what’s out there but we pretty much leave it open after that. This way there is no stress, we’re not attached to a schedule, no pressure to be here or there at a specific time, we simply enjoy as we go.

DATE IDEA No. 4: Take something off your list. We all have things we always say we want to do but never get around to doing them. But it’s a brand new year and the best time to scratch something off your list before you start loosing that –New Year motivation– so take the brewery tour you’ve been wanting to check out, rent that vespa/fave car and go for a ride, take a hot air ballon, go back to Disney, visit a new museum., etc. Doing new things together always make the relationship feel fresh again so it’s a nice way to celebrate this day.

DATE NIGHT No. 5: Stay in + cook a new dish together. I get it, not everyone’s excited to get all dressed up and go to a crowded restaurant that day or hell even leave the house! So why not open a bottle of wine (or a few), prepare something neither of you have cooked before and play your favorite music in the background. Or even find movies that go along with the theme of your dinner… cooking a French dish? Then watch The Favourite (love Emma Stone), or Midnight in Paris (I never get tired of it), Les Miserables, Marie Antoinette… Spanish, Greek, Italian, Japanese? Cool, find a match and enjoy!

Have any fun ideas of your own? Let me know below, I’d love to hear them!! Also keep an eye out for more Valentines Day inspo posts…

xo Erika