Just Bri 2.0

Wow, I cannot believe it's been almost a year since I sat down to write my last blog post. I've missed blogging, I've missed the creative outlet it offers, and I've missed the friends I used to connect with on a regular basis through this blog. I'll admit though, it's been a much needed break.

I started Just Bri right after graduating college. I had just moved to a new city where I knew no one, and was embarking on my first "big girl" job. This blog was a raw and honest attempt at sharing the life of a recent college grad, going through life's transitions. Somewhere along the way though, the authenticity I wanted for this space was lost.

Between the product reviews, "fashion" posts, and giveaways, my voice became inauthentic. Don't get me wrong, I love an occasion to wear something other than jeans and a t-shirt, and I will forever be a fan of makeup and killer shoes, but that's not what I want to define me. 

This past year I've begun to trust Jesus more than I have my entire life. I've wholeheartedly allowed him to direct my path, and I've seen him work in ways that I never dreamed possible. I've grown in my faith, and learned that the depths of my sin make his grace that much more beautiful. It hasn't been pretty, it's actually been really hard, but when is growth every easy?

So, things around here are changing. I'm going back to raw, honest, and hopefully refreshing posts. Posts about life, and my journey through faith wrapped in grace. It may not be what you're used to reading, but I hope you'll stick around because I'm sharing from my heart and I'm hoping that my words will speak to you.

The Mint Julep Boutique + $25 Gift Card Giveaway

The sweet girls from The Mint Julep Boutique sent me this Aztec Print Geo Top a few weeks ago and I couldn't wait for the weather to cool down in Charlotte so I could wear it! My bestie Margaret and I had a girls day on Sunday (Mani/Pedi, Sushi, and non-stop episodes of The New Girl) and this was the perfect outfit to throw on. I was comfy all day in my Aztec print top, some black leggings, and my favorite boots from Target.
 The Mint Julep Boutique has some really cute, stylish and affordable pieces. Some of the things I'm currently lusting over are this Just Be Free Top ($38)
and this Night Out Dress ($59)
And because the girls from The Mint Julep Boutique are so awesome, they've offered to give a Just Bri reader a $25 gift certificate to their store, so you can add a cute piece to your wardrobe for the holidays! Enter below for your chance to win by Friday 11/21/14 at midnight, good luck!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Honest Hazel Review + Giveaway

As most of you know, I travel 30+ weekends a year for my job as a PR rep in motorsports. Our races take place all over the country, and as soon as the race is over we fly home. This means that sometimes I'm getting back from a race weekend at 4 a.m. or later, and most of the time I'm exhausted.

The telltale sign of how tired I am has always been my eyes. I notice that after long weekends at the race track I'll have dark puffy circles under my eyes, so I was thrilled when Honest Hazel sent me a sample to try out.

Honest Hazel is a product you place under your eyes to instantly revitalize, relax and refresh the under eye area. After racing in Phoenix this weekend and getting very little sleep, I knew it would be there perfect time to try them out.
Each packet comes with one treatment for each eye and clear instructions on how to apply them, as seen below.
You place the gel molds under your eye and leave them for 20-25 minutes. I instantly felt the cooling effect of the aloe, and I felt like my eyes were brighter and more open. The only caution I would say is that they probably work best if you lay back and relax while you have them on, I was trying to watch TV and every time I laughed they would slip off (you can tell in this picture).
After 20 minutes I removed them, and I was really impressed with the results. The puffiness had decreased significantly, and the skin under my eye felt tighter and bright. I definitely will be ordering more to use after long race weekend.
I've got great news for "Just Bri" readers! Honest Hazel wants to send one of you a 3-pack to try out, an yoou can enter below for your chance to win. The contest ends Friday 11/14 at midnight, good luck!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wake Foot Sanctuary & Shop

I was recently introduced to an awesome concept, a "foot sanctuary & spa". At Wake Foot Sanctuary & Spa in Asheville, North Carolina, guests can spend some time relaxing over a luxurious foot soak. How great does that sound? I would love to plop down on one of their comfy couches with a good book and just soak and let my cares melt away. What I really love about this concept is that unlike when you get a massage or a facial, you can enjoy a foot soak and then continue with your day without being covered in massage oil or grease.
 {pictures above c/o Wake}
The next time I'm in Asheville I am definitely going to stop by for a soak! Since I'm not there however, the lovely ladies of Wake sent me an eco friendly gift box filled with a bar of all natural, handcrafted Wake natural soap; a lip balm; and a jar of luxurious whipped shea butter. As soon as I opened the box my entire room was filled with the relaxing scent of lavender.
If you're not in the Asheville area you can order all of their products online. I'm lusting over these bath salts, because after a long race weekend nothing relieves my aching muscles quite like a soak in some bath salts. If you're looking to get some Christmas shopping done early, I definitely think they'd make a great stocking stuffer!
If you stop by Wake make sure you tell the ladies I said "hello"! I can't wait to pay them a visit soon.

The Man at Waffle House

A few months ago we traveled to St. Louis, Missouri for work. We had some time to pass before the race track opened so we stopped at Waffle House for breakfast. It was packed when we walked in, so we settled for some seats facing the kitchen. To my left sat my teammates and to my right sat a gentleman whose face I'll never forget.

The man appeared to be in his 50s. He was wearing a pair of blue jeans and an old worn out t-shirt. He had the biggest smile and most welcoming eyes I've ever seen. As soon as I sat down his eyes lit up and he greeted me with a big "hello!"

I was immediately uncomfortable. I looked to my left and saw my teammates smirking. They got lost in their own conversation and I was mad at them, mad at them for leaving me with the weird stranger who insisted on talking to me.

I clutched my purse close to me, in the ridiculous way that we so often do, even though nothing about this man was threatening. He continued to ask me questions about my job, what were doing in town etc. and I continued to give him short, cold answers and ignore him the best I could.

The stranger finished his coffee and wished me the best of luck over the weekend. Before he got up to leave he gave me this coupon and reminded me not once but twice to use it. I immediately crumbled inside. This coupon was worth so much more to him than it was to me, but he wanted to share something with me, his new friend.
All this man wanted was to enjoy a conversation with a stranger, and my pride and ego were to big for that. It would have cost me nothing but would have meant so much to him if I simply answered his questions with a friendly smile, and it's a lesson I'll never forget.

I've carried this coupon around in my wallet ever since that day. It serves as a reminder that people are good and to never consider yourself better than anyone else. It helps remind me to smile at that passerby on the street and to take the time to have a conversation with the stranger next to me. You never know how much those few minutes of kindness can mean to someone else.

The Makings of a Gallery Wall

1. "God Bless Cowboys" (antique store) 2. "B" Hobby Lobby 3. "2 Corinthians 12:9" print (LilyandVal) 4. "Meet Me in Paris" print (The Wheatfield) 5. "Love Is How We Got Here" print (Oh Brooke) 6. "Your Home Is Where Your Heart Is" print (Lily Gene) 7. "Paris Print" streets of Paris 8. Key (antique store)

We moved into a new apartment last weekend and I knew that I wanted to create a gallery wall in my new room. I've been collecting parts and pieces for a few months, and when I brought it all together I was so happy with the look! I think the key to a good gallery wall is making sure that all of the pieces are a reflection of you and your personality, if you do that, I don't think you can go wrong. I also have to thank my amazing dad for his patience, and for hanging every single piece just the way I had layed it out.

Most of the prints above came from Etsy, and I've included links to the shops you can find them at. What do y'all think? Have you created a gallery wall before?

Fake It

Warning...you might need sunglasses to look at the following picture...
No folks, I didn't use a filter for this picture, I am actually THAT pale. After posting this on Instagram a few weeks ago I decided I need to do something to make my skin glow during theses gloomy months.

Tanning beds just aren't an option after a few skin cancer scares in my family, so I went on a search for the best products to help you fake that "sun-kissed" glow this winter.

1. Jergens Natural Glow Face Moisturizer (Fair/Medium) -I like to use the daily moisturizer in the morning, and my regular moisturizer at night. The fair to medium color gives my skin just enough glow without looking orange.

2. BeneFit Hoola - This is my absolute favorite bronzer. It has a matte finish so you won't look like you're going to a club, and the color is light so you can build the perfect tan to match your skin. It's great for the winter months when it's easy to look like a pumpkin if your bronzer is too dark.

3. Karora - Tinted Self Tan Mist - Radiant Goddess Light-Medium - Karora was nice enough to send me this self tan mist and I have to say that I will be buying it once I run out. I'm a fan of spray tans but can't afford to get them very often. This Karora self tan mist was easy to apply, and the color looked better and lasted longer than any spray tan I've ever gotten. This is a product you definitely need to try this winter! You can learn more about the Karora products here.

These are some products I love. What are some of the products you use to fake that sun-kissed glow?
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