beauty favorites: travel skincare

For those of you that know me well, you're probably surprised this post hasn't already happened. 

For those of you that don't know me well... my name is Haley and I have a beauty product addiction. Welcome to my obsession.

Since I traveled 2/3 of the way around the WORLD this summer, I figured I'd put together a little post on what saved my skin from wreaking havoc on itself these past few months.

Just three quick notes here...

  • I am a devoted reader of the UK skincare guru Caroline Hirons. Her cheatsheets on her blog literally changed my skin, and therefore my life. Specifically, the routines one. If you have even an inkling of interest in skincare, go read up - it's been a huge year of education for me and why I use the products i do and in which order.
  • I tend to gravitate towards more expensive skincare products simply because the ingredients are better and the quality is better, especially for serums. I also always try to look for natural skincare without parabens - something that's hard to find in the drugstore. However, one of my favorite cleansers of all time is Cetaphil. So, there's give and take.
  • My skin is normal to dry, somewhat sensitive, and dehydrated (as most of our skin is.) Your skin might be totally different, so keep that in mind for product recommendations!

Okay, ready?!

travel skincare

we'll start from left to right, shall we?

fresh sugar lip treatment ($22.50) - the holy grail of lip balms. i always have this on my nightstand and in my bag on long flights. i religiously use burt's bees as a daily lip balm and have one strategically placed everywhere. but this is the big kahuna for me when it comes to lip care. and it has spf!

caudalie beauty elixir ($18.00, travel size) - my skin is on the drier, dehydrated side, so i'm always looking for bursts of moisture in my skincare products. enter: this caudalie spray. it's considered one of the best hydrating toners, and i didn't realize how much my skin loved it until i stopped using it. it's perfect for flights since the air is SO dry, just a quick spritz of this on your hands to press lightly onto your face and voila, instant moisture. i use this after cleansing, but before serum.

glamglow thirstymud hydrating treatment ($19.00, travel size) - i have always been fascinated with any and all of the glamglow masks, but was so put off by their price tags. thankfully, these mini sizes were introduced, and i tried the hydrating one right before our charleston trip... and i LOVED it. it's thick, creamy, and smells like coconuts. mmmm. i have used it on 4 trips now, and have barely made a dent in the small size. i use a dime size (or less) on top of my moisturizer, or in place of it on the plane. 

caudalie vinosource sos thirst quenching serum ($49.00) - for the price, this is (in my honest opinion) the best hydrating serum out there to my knowledge. i haven't found another serum that does anything close to what this serum does for my skin. it's my security blanket - i bring it everywhere with me. it's silky, absorbs quickly, and makes a huge difference in my skin's hydration. if i had to tell you to choose one product on here to start using today - it would be this one. apply this after your toner, before your moisturizer.

kate somerville exfolikate intensive exfoliating treatment ($22.00, travel size) - yet another product i have been dying to try due to its amazing reputation in the beauty community, but the price tag for the full size was too high. these little travel sizes are perfect for me - i don't need to use it more than once a week to see a difference. it's that strong of a product. exfoliating when traveling is key - since your skin is so dry, you need to get that dead skin off of there to help your other products penetrate.

tata harper replenishing nutrient complex ($45.00) - i LOVE this little guy. it's basically an all natural multivitamin oil for your face. the nutrients in this really take your skincare game up to the next level - my skin just soaks it in. apply after your moisturizer for a top coat of herbal, oily deliciousness. *no, applying oils to your skin doesn't make your skin extra oily. if anything, this will help restore your balance of moisture and make your skin less oily!*

whew, that was fun! and i hope it was helpful!

i could talk about skincare all day long, you guys. but i won't bore you any further. those of you who are interested - leave me some comments and we'll chat.

til next time,






tokyo recap!

wow you guys... long time no talk. it's been almost a month since i've posted and i'm so, so sorry!

but can you just check out this ramen real quick, and forgive me?


mmhmm, that's what i thought.

tokyo was so, so interesting. i was only there for 6 days (including traveling) and was working 7am-7pm, so didn't have too much time to explore the city like you should when you're in such an amazing place.

what i didn't get to do in sightseeing, i did make up for in eating ALL of the food. i'm very lucky to have such great coworkers that made sure i ate the things i was interested in, as well as some traditional japanese dishes.  i ate things i couldn't pronounce - this ramen, for one (tsukeman style, no idea what's in it) - and wouldn't have eaten under normal circumstances - beef gizzard, fish sausage (who knew?), so many raw types of sea creatures - and tried a lot of things that i didn't even know what they were. but my palate and my mind were so intrigued. i still am trying to remember and figure out what i ate.

the culture is so different from here - not at all in bad ways. everything in japan is about the group as a whole - not the individual. everything is clean, fast, convenient, efficient, and everyone is polite. exceedingly so. it made me feel very aware of american culture and norms, and how brash and rude we must seem, especially in this type of setting. drawing attention to yourself is a big no no. even on trains and train platforms, it's considered rude to talk on the phone or even have your sound on.

being blonde, i did get some attention from children - one told me i looked like Elsa from Frozen (i had my hair in its notorious side braid) - and i did get asked to have one photo taken with a group of teenagers. it was very different for me to be in a community where i was very clearly not from there. but it was refreshing in a way.

the day i got home, i researched prices on going back and also stopping in a few more asian cities. i almost feel like the city and culture gets more complex the longer you stay - but you want to stay to dig in deeper.

i'm counting the days until i can go back and give tokyo a proper run, but until then i'll be daydreaming about this ramen.

til next time,





ireland recap!

we're baaaack! i never truly understood what jet lag was until i spent 18 hours traveling home with an 8 hour time difference. i was also there for 14 days, so it's been quite the adjustment. it's like being hungover yet drunk and the same time. woof.

despite the jet lag , the experience was unforgettable. i spent the first week in dublin working (my company has an office there) and then TS came out to meet me and travel!

first of all, irish people are seriously the BEST - so welcoming and friendly. they're like the southerners of the UK - our cab drivers chatted the entire trip, and we never met a stranger at the pub. it made the experience that much better to know we were so welcomed. i think traveling with a red head didn't hurt, either ;)

my first week was spent mostly working, but i frequented many restaurants, pubs, shopping, and of course, the infamous temple bar neighborhood. the live music, crowded streets, and international crowd singing (mostly) american music was definitely a fun night. i was hurting the next day, but it was well worth it!

the second week i spent with TS, we checked some of the "touristy" spots in dublin off our list - guinness storehouse, dublin castle, trinity college library, the national gallery, saint patrick's cathedral, grafton street, jameson distillery, numerous pubs and bars. but we also just walked around, grabbed late afternoon coffees, took naps, and always ended the night with a pint at a pub. it was the kind of lifestyle i could definitely get used to.

we also took the irish rail to a small town on the west coast of ireland called Galway - it was basically a mini Dublin, but way closer to a lot of the scenic ireland coastline. we took a tour of the country, the burren landscape, and the infamous cliffs of moher. it was stunningly beautiful and hard to even really absorb in the moment. 

now, we're just getting back in the swing of things at home. it's been nice to relax and readjust. 

but then wait! i just found out i'm off to tokyo next week for work! i'll do my best to get some recipes up before then, but when i'm back it's all health food from now on to get ready for this kind of big thing called a wedding we have coming up :)

till then,

xoxo, #chefhaley


sorry i have been MIA, my friends! it's been a crazy couple months here at the #chefhaley household... so here are some updates for you!

yes, that's what that photo is - we got engaged! on my birthday, march 22nd, my best friend gave me the best present i've ever received after (you guessed it) making the best blueberry pancakes i've ever had in my life. i've been calling them engagement pancakes - they'll be on the blog at some point :) we're so excited to start this journey together, and i'm so so thankful for his love.

ever since then, we've been traveling - home to virginia, new places like seattle - and just got back from a wonderful family vacation in charleston, sc. our families threw us a surprise engagement dinner - aren't those foxes just the cutest?! - we spent plenty of time by the sea and pool, and I also found THE dress!! i was adamant about just going to "look" but low and behold, i found the one.

i promise you'll have more recipes coming your way soon! we're off to ireland later this month so i'll post a quick update then, but have some recipes scheduled throughout our trip. 

any wedding planning advice, please send them my way :) 

xoxo, #chefhaley