Top 13 Essentials For Pregnancy: A Guide For Feeling Beautiful


I wanted to gather up some of my most faves for what have helped get me through this pregnancy still feeling like myself, feeling comfortable in my own skin, and feeling like I was just the hot part of hot mess. I am so thankful to be pregnant, I am not complaining, but it is a weird and crazy emotional train figuring out how to live in this new form, your body growing in ways you never new or thought possible. So I gathered up some of my most favorite products that I have found to be essential for getting through pregnancy and feeling beautiful.

1. You can NOT go wrong with a pop of color on the lips. Even if it is a throw the hair up in a messy bun, hope I remembered to brush my teeth, and are all the kiddos accounted for kind of day. Adding a little color to your lips can seriously make you feel sexy and sassy... just pop on a pair of cute sunnies and you're ready to take on the day. My favorite is the NARS Velvet Matte Lip Pencils ("Dragon Girl" is such a great red, I also love "Red Square" for a little orange undertone). If you can't make it to a makeup counter, REVLON BalmStain line is a great alternative. 

2. Dry lips I can not hang with, so I am loving Beauty Counter Lip Gloss in "Peony". Smoother than a lacquer but long lasting and extremely moisturizing and not full of chemicals. Plus, it has a slight hint of a vanilla so it feels like a treat. 

3. Aside from a few pair of jeans (H&M and Pea in a Pod have great maternity jeans) and a couple tanks and tees to wear under sweaters/shirts I try to live in non- maternity clothes during my pregnancies. You can pretty much find me in Urban Outfitters or Free People every day. The "First Kiss" Free People dress for example is pretty much like the unicorn of all dresses. I have it now in two colors, and would in more if I didn't think I would be judged by my husband. I have pretty much tried to convince everyone that crosses my path that they need this dress. It is all kinds of flowy and magical, and its cut in a way that it allows for growth, so I have worn them throughout my entire pregnancy and I know I can wear it after as well, so it clearly is worth it... tell my hubs ok. The dress constantly has various pattern options, so always check back to see what has come back or what is new. 

image by Studio Castillero 

4. I searched for what felt like forever for a simple "Little Black Dress" (and I used the term little loosely, because well, pregnancy). Everything I was finding was either cut too low in the chest (offensive), slits too high on the legs (offensive) or just not cute (also offensive). I finally resorted to searching on Amazon, and found the most gloriously perfect black dress. The only thing i regret is not finding it sooner, because I find myself looking for excuses to wear this dress anywhere. It fits so nice, and just feels sexy when you put it on. It is also great for showing off your belly!  

5. Rose water spray is great for a little boost of hydration and softening of your skin, it is refreshing, and can also be used as a great setting spray for makeup. My favorite lately is the Herbivore Rose Hibiscus Spray made with organic coconut water. The killer design of the bottle also helps :) 

6. Pregnant with or without additional kiddos, energy just some days is not happening. For when I just do not have the time to reallllly style my hair, Kevin Murphy's Resort Spray is magic. This has always been my go to sea salt spray for helping with achieving the perfect beach wave style, but now that I'm low on energy and time (every morning?) it is like liquid gold. It doesn't weigh the hair down or dry it out, and it smells like vacation. 

7. This is my third pregnancy, and my body has just never experienced pain like this. doTERRA's Deep Blue Rub has seriously saved my back and my hands. My hands fall asleep during my pregnancies (for months) and it can be really painful, and this lotion and a little light heating pad has worked wonders on helping me to feel human. Always consult your Doctor first. 

8. I had a really hard time with my prenatal vitamins with my other pregnancies. This time around I am loving the Perfect Prenatal Multi-Vitamin from New Chapter and the Carlson Cod Liver Oil. I have had no problem with an upset tummy and I take them in the morning with or without food and also right before bed. I couldn't commit to the Cod Liver in oil form, even with the lemon flavor, but that is also a great option for not having to swallow as many capsules. I found mine at Mothers  Market and Whole Foods. Always consult your Doctor first. 

9. Ohhhh Parker Clay, I will own every one of your bags if it is the last thing I do! These bags you guys! They are so beautiful and well made, and backed by such heart as they allow for job opportunities for women in Ethiopia. Their signature Zip Tote is the perfect carry everything I own at once bag, and also will make for the perfect diaper bag once baby is here! 

10. Windecker Farms Stretching Belly Body Butter is one of the few body butters that I could find that was made with Shea Butter, Cocoa Butter AND Mango Butter, and made with organic ingredients. Specifically, I wanted a butter that had mango in it as it is rich with anti-inflammatory properties and helps with scarring. The Shea butter is full of antioxidants and is great for dry and damaged skin, allowing for instant hydration and moisture, and the cocoa butter helps with skin elasticity and collagen production. I love the smell and texture this butter, it basically melts into the perfect moisturizer. 

11. The Snoogle by Leachco has changed the way I sleep when pregnant. As in, I actually sleep. Unlike other body pillows, the design of the pillow enables it to literally wrap around your entire body: neck, back, belly, feet and head support. It is definitely a lot larger than I thought it was going to be, but my sleep is so much better once I entangle myself and wrap it all around me... My husband just lovvvvvves it. Also, I think it will work great for helping with nursing support later as well. 

12. The Hydroflask stainless steel water bottle has been amazing for keeping my water chilled all day long while on the go. All  one million times I fill it. It is so important to stay hydrated for both baby and mamma. I loved that it is larger so it can hold up to 40oz, it is stainless steel, insulated with the ability to keep my beverage cool for up to 24 hours, comes in tons of color options, AND most importantly give 5 % back to charity. 

13. La Croix sparkling water, I would marry you. It may be a little ridiculous the amount of sparkling water that I go through on any given day, but I can't help it. It is refreshing, helps settle my tummy when I am feeling a little off from the pregnancy nausea game, and also if I am being really honest - it makes me feel fancy. Sparkling water with a little fresh berries, mint or basil, in a fancy cup and all of a sudden I feel fancy. I love La Croix because it has great flavor options with nothing added to it. 

Posted on March 3, 2016 .

Beautiful Lies Under The Industry Skin

Man I love what I do. I love makeup and hairstyling, the tools and techniques, the very art of it, and most of all the people. I love the various styles and genres of makeup, the way it can transform and enhance and the way it can elicit emotion. 

I think makeup and styling can help and encourage people to lean into their confidence, seeing beauty in themselves and their features that they may not have been aware of before, or have known how to enhance. However, it's the motive and message behind some makeup styles and trends that I have an issue with. I'd be lying if I didn't say I find myself struggling with the industry that I love and am so passionate about. An industry I live and breathe, that I feel called to be a part of. 

At what point did we decide that a woman's face should be disguised in order to be beautiful? When was it decided that makeup was more about painting, carving, and covering? What happened to makeup that enhanced, drew out, and revealed the natural beauty and features of a face, working with the lines, structure and details of the face in a natural way?

What I see happening is a level of insecurity, that women can't seem to turn from, becoming their reality. These insecurities are only being further affirmed by the professionals aligning with those lies. The lie that they don't have a natural beauty by masking the face they were born with, which only further defines beauty as something that must be created. 

I speak mainly in the direction of weddings, when a woman should feel like her most beautiful self, not like someone they do not recognize in the mirror, in order to feel confident. Clients bringing in photos of someone else not as inspiration for a look but asking to look like the person in the photo is disheartening. Photos from Pinterest or Instagram that couldn't be further from the truth- filtered, modified, and edited. The photo they cling to is one of a face of "beauty" that is naturally unattainable; void of pores, imperfections, lines, creases ... life. In my opinion that is not art, its dishonesty, and sets a standard for perfection that is deceiving.  

How will women ever step out from under the pressures of not being "beautiful enough", the lies society coddle, if we cannot help our clients see that they just need to step into what they already have? We are in the business of beauty and it is our duty to help reveal it and make women feel comfortable and confident in their own skin ... Skin that will not later be Facetuned, modified , smoothed or edited before posted because then we only further perpetuate the lies. Kevin Aucoin, one of THE greatest artists of all time said "I think the beginning of all beauty is liking and knowing oneself". That right there is the message. I want that to be the underlying motive always behind my work, building up women, bringing forward their beauty in a way they can genuinely own and lean into, and helping them to see just how truly magnificent they were made. 

Posted on February 16, 2016 .

Mom of boys

I look at this photo and my heart swells with love and gratitude over these sweet faces. I can see the adventure that is just naturally there in their eyes, their gentle spirits, their bold and fearless sense of wonder and their sweet and sensitive souls...my boys, my sweet sweet boys...I'm a mom of boys. Soon to be three boys. 

It's a weird thing to process, the idea that I will only have boys. Having to process through my ideas of what I thought my family would look like has been a lot harder than I expected. If I'm being honest, I felt a part of my heart break when I heard the words "it's a boy." Because all I really heard was "you will not have a daughter". I was sad, broken hearted, I felt like my dreams were shattered and honestly, I was angry. I was angry at God -how could I feel so confident in knowing I was having a girl, the confidence of others feeling I was having a girl, and for Him not preparing my heart to feel joy in that moment I was told I was having a boy. I felt foolish, sad, and I felt selfish. All these emotions hit me at once and I felt overwhelmed and weirdly empty and alone at the same time (and not because I was - my family/friends support is incredible). It was like I couldn't catch a breath. How could I not feel excitement, how could I feel sad, how could I be so selfish?....and then guilt, extreme guilt set in. 

How could I, how dare I, have these feelings - I trust that I have a perfectly healthy baby growing inside my perfectly healthy body, I am pregnant - naturally (having had issues getting pregnant with our first and needing medical assistance), and here I was focusing on what I didn't have!? But I realize it has nothing to do with this beautiful baby boy growing inside me, whom I love already, it has everything to do with grieving the ideas and thoughts I had dreamt up my whole life. I am in no way disappointed with my son that will be joining our family in a few short months, however, my heart aches for the daughter I thought I'd one day have. The idea that I won't braid my daughter's hair or place pigtails on her tiny little head, teach her to do her makeup, or buy clothes with glitter and tulle. There won't be any father-daughter dances, or mother-daughter dates, prom dress shopping... or wedding dress shopping. I needed to grieve through these ideas... I still am, and probably will for a while. I sometimes wonder if that feeling will ever go away, and asked Joel just today if he thought my sadness I still feel for the girl I don't have takes away from the genuine gratitude for what I do have. 

As I navigate through this season, I know I have , in my heart I feel, the deepest gratitude for this pregnancy, for our baby boy. My feelings that I am struggling through do not take away from how I feel about him. I look forward to the future and I'm working toward getting past this brief season where I feel sadness for the daughter I won't have, and feeling excited for what God has in store with what we do have. It is an honor to be gifted the opportunity to raise, and help shape, strong Godly men. And I pray for my future daughter-in-laws and the relationship that I will have with them, that my husband will have with them, and how they will fill my soul ... I have also already told my husband that we will 100% be buying their wedding dresses to ensure my spot at the fittings ;)

I wrote this for myself to help cull through these feelings, to help heal through the "if onlys", to allow myself grace in this season, and to move through the guilt I feel. I was fearful to put it out there, to be judged or to offend others... but I share it because I know I am not the only one to feel these things, and hope maybe it will offer comfort to even one person.

Posted on February 16, 2016 .

Big Brother, 2013

Never did I imagine that I would raise a home full of, nor that I would be outnumbered by,  all boys.  But God had bigger and grander plans for our future than we could have even dreamt of.

I previously shared the difficulty we had getting pregnant with our first born. Yet, now only 15 months after our last little miracle, we have been blessed to announce the coming of our newest addition- another baby boy. We only have plans to have a family of four, and I would be lying if I said that it was easy to swallow the idea that  I would not have a little girl to raise and share that special relationship with like my mother and I do. But as a dear friend said, how beautiful is it if God's plans for us are far grander than even the deepest desires of our heart.  In that alone I know this baby has a special place in this world, a place that surpasses any purpose I could dream up for him, and far greater than anything I could ever fathom.  We are so blessed to turn our family of three into four (well five including the cutest dog you have ever seen), and I am excited to have a life with not only one man of my dreams looking out over me, but now a team of three men - to call my own. And how lucky am I to care for them!?

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*Special thanks to Wedding Chicks for the adorable “Big Brother” shirt, and to my hubs for making a darling video.

Posted on April 27, 2013 .

A look back at 2011 + Our Favorite Moments

2011 has been an incredible  year. Looking back, we feel so blessed to have been able to work with such incredible vendors, on some amazing projects. We absolutely adored every one of our brides, and we are so thankful for a year that far surpassed any expectations that we had.

Here is a look back at our favorite moments from 2011:

Favorite Style- Bohemian Inspired Shoot:

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Styled by Sweet Emilia Jane + Sitting in a Tree
Photos by Katie Neal
Headpiece by Lo Boheme
Featured on Green Wedding Shoes

Favorite Hair- California Love Shoot:

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Styled by Sitting In a Tree Events
Photos by JoieLaLa Photographie
Food styled by Miho Gastro Truck
Flowers by Tend Living
Hair Piece by Lo Boheme
Featured on Green Wedding Shoes

Favorite Makeup- Mod Shoot

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Styled by Jesi Haack Design
Photo by Jasmine Star
Hairpiece by Pixel and Hank
Brides Veil/Bow: Mary Me Bridal

Favorite Shoot- Rue Magazine w/ Mindy Weiss

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Planned and Produced by Mindy Weiss + Be Inspired PR
Photos by Elizabeth Messina
Flowers by Dolce Designs
Featured in Rue Magazine

Favorite Models – Utterly Engaged Magazine Issue #17

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Produced by Utterly Engaged
Photo by Connie Lyu Photography
Accessories by The Soil and Sea
Featured in Issue #17 Utterly Engaged

Favorite Wedding Dress

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Event & Design by Sitting In a Tree Events
Photos by Studio Castillero
Dress by Jenny Packham
Florals by The Floral Lab
Featured on 100 Layer Cake


…Along with our favorite picks from shoots and weddings we did, here are some of our favorite moments that we were honored to experience:

Publications

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LA Times, Brides Magazine, The Knot Magazine

Access Hollywood Live

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Liz Lange for Target Maternity
Watch the video here.

Favorite Team Moment

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10 year wedding anniversary shoot for one of our very own! …. one of our favorite 10.11. team members and resident artist  … such an honor!
Photos by Kenny Grill Photography

Favorite Life Moment

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Expecting our first son…Kade Brysaac … 2012
Photo by Color Me Rad
Custom onesie – On to Baby

Posted on December 31, 2011 .

Baby Beuk + Coming Soon 2012

Three years ago, today, we promised to walk beside each other, hand in hand through life. We promised to always love, laugh, and share this journey together. Three years later, and after a year and a half of trying to build our family, we are excited to happily announce our soon-to-be tiny addition.

Mother's Day, 2011, was one of the best moments we have shared as a married couple. Announcing that we are expecting our first baby to our parents, after years of prayers, doctors visits, and not knowing if we could get pregnant at all, was one of the greatest joys we have experienced. We found out that we were expecting the week before mothers day on Cinco De Mayo…

Onnnnnn a side note, I can't lie- I took the test (because I wanted a Margarita and was playing it safe) and was so shocked to see a positive sign I called Joel and asked him to come home immediately. He was, of course, running an errand for me and was at the store- so naturally I just blurted it out….over the phone. I know,….but I couldn't keep it in. So, Joel definitely found out while standing in front of the toothpaste at the grocery store- so us…

As soon as we found out we asked our dear friend Amy, from The Wedding Chicks and On To Baby, to make us a Custom Onsie for our moms to open on Mother's Day. She adorably placed "Coming Soon - 2012", and joyful, and thankful, tears were had.

We find out the sex of the baby in two weeks, and could not be more excited, blessed, or emotional (okay, maybe that's just me), than we are.

Thank you to all of our friends and family for all of the prayers and well wishes over the last year and half. Love you all….

With Love -

E + J

Posted on July 23, 2011 .