The early ’00s MySpace phenomenon surely had its share of flex culture, pedophiles and promiscuity—but unlike today’s era of social media, it maintained an unavoidable level of authenticity. There were no filtering apps, no grade-A cell phone cameras, no ~aesthetic~ (unless you count an obnoxiously glittery HTML-coded background as such). Since its inception (and shortly thereafter demise), there’s really been nothing quite like the extremely popular platform. Enter: the new MySpace.
Yep, you read it here first! The very end of 2020 introduced the World Wide Web to SpaceHey, a site that literally mirrors the former favorite. As of a little more than a month later, the platform has amassed quite a following (more on that below), and it definitely has a vibe.
Where MySpace attracted pretty much everyone, SpaceHey gears more toward an alt audience, infiltrated primarily with self-proclaimed emo users. Like, take the scenester kids from MySpace’s heydey and that pretty much encompasses all of SpaceHey. This site is definitely a ‘lax reprieve from the pristine perfection of Instagram, while lacking the aggressive, in-your-faceness of TikTok. I wish there were more specific search options (where are all my L.A. peeps at?!), but alas, you can freely browse around and click on pages—all of which are public—as you please.
For more information on this prime piece of nostalgia come to life, I reached out to SpaceHey’s founder, who goes simply by An. He’s an 18-year-old recent high school grad from Germany, whose plans to travel around the world were curtailed due to the pandemic. Instead, he launched an entire media platform (no biggie!), along with a T-Shirt line. Both enterprises are under the umbrella of what he calls the Tibush project.
Keep reading for everything to know about the teenage prodigy, and the semi-revival of America’s favorite gone-but-not-forgotten social media site.
SL: What inspired you to emulate MySpace when you were only a toddler during its heyday?
An: Because I was only a few years old when MySpace was at its heights, I never came to use it. However, I heard a lot about it—both from older friends and from the internet—and I was always really interested in the “old days” of the internet. I really like the feel of “old” websites.
I watched a lot of videos about MySpace and looked at a ton of screenshots and archive.org pages, and I came to the conclusion that you can’t find something like this kind of social site nowadays. So that’s when I decided I could try to create a MySpace-like site myself! I tried it out with my friends, and it was so cool I decided to make it public—and that’s where I’m at now.
SL: What’s your favorite feature of SpaceHey, and what do you think will draw users to a platform like this in 2021?
An: I think mainly the absence of an algorithm, which dictates what the user should see. I also like the ability to customize your own profile as much as you want and to make it truly your “own space” on the internet. That’s not possible nowadays with platforms like Twitter or Facebook, where the design of every profile looks exactly the same.
SL: Has Tom [Anderson] or anyone else affiliated with MySpace reached out to you?
An: No, not yet. But I’d love to chat with him one day!
SL: How many users are on the platform? And are there any trends on where they’re from?
An: There are around 25,000 users [as of when this article went live]. The majority are from the U.S., but there are also a lot of people from Europe and other parts of the world.
SL: How do you expect to maintain SpaceHey’s longevity when people are so glued to Instagram and TikTok?
An: I hope SpaceHey gains even more popularity, not only among people who used MySpace back in the day, but also among people who never experienced such a form of social media before (like me!). The SpaceHey community is all about freedom of expression. It’s one of the only social media platforms where all users can freely design and control their own profiles and the content they share.
Apart from that, users can share blog posts and so-called “Bulletins” on SpaceHey. Bulletins are a way to share content only with your friends in a non-permanent way (all Bulletins and Bulletin comments will automatically be deleted after 10 days). Because a lot of people asked for features related to music, I’m currently building music features which I will add to SpaceHey soon.
By the way, I’m open to any suggestions/feedback regarding SpaceHey.
SL: Who is the typical SpaceHey user?
An: SpaceHey is for everyone who likes to be part of a friendly community. Both MySpace experts from back in the day and younger generations are the focus of SpaceHey, and everyone who already joined seems to really enjoy it. It’s a really great place to hang out online, get to know new people, and discover amazing profiles from all over the world!
SL: What are your hobbies outside of coding and computers? Where do you see yourself in five years?
An: My hobbies, apart from coding, are traveling, getting to know new cultures, meeting new friends and playing the guitar. In the future, I want to study Computer Science at a university, and I’d love to visit Silicon Valley one day!
Now that you know everything you need to about MySpace’s clone, get your TikTok fix by following THESE fascinating L.A.-based users on the app!
Each December, I reflect on where I was 12 months ago—and over the last few years I feel like I continue progressing. To presently add to my self-growth? I’ve been living alone during a pandemic. Much more on the novel coronavirus below, but first let me set the scene for what led up to it.
Quick Flashback to 2019 for Context
2019 was a really important year for me. Nothing big happened, necessarily, but there were a slew of little things that added up in a very big way. It was the first time since I can remember that I took care of my mind, body and soul, collectively and consistently, and I felt like I was finally growing into the person I wanted to be.
Each new year, we always say with great hope, Oh, I just know 20– is gonna be the best year ever! And while some years have certainly been rewarding in their own right, it’s been quite some time since I’ve had one of those remarkable best years ever. That is… until 2020, or so I presumptuously thought. And theoretically speaking, it was supposed to be—for everyone. There was the whole 20/20 vision outlook, all the major holidays fell on weekends, it was a new decade, potentially a new president… all that good stuff.
But for me, personally, I spent all of 2019 laying the groundwork for truly a well-deserved best year ever in 2020. Last year was spent in grueling workout classes, eating remarkably well, limiting my alcohol, emanating positive energy and truly being the best version of myself—inside and out. To top it off, on New Year’s Eve day, I announced my plan to launch a T-shirt brand following a fresh trademark for the line.
In the past, I thought time naturally created blessings and opportunities for us. I sat around just waiting for things to happen. In recent years, however (namely 2019), I realized you really did have to work for what you want, and I was putting in the time.
2020 Kicks Off
As I envisioned, 2020 was off to an amazing start. Traditionally speaking, January has been a really strong month for me, regardless of the year. I don’t know if it’s the fresh air or the start to a new year, but I do find my energy more heightened, with opportunities more aptly infiltrating my life during this month. And 2020 was no exception.
Everything was so right up until mid-February, when Joyce, a longtime friend, colleague and mentor to many passed away. While the cause of death was unknown at the time, it was a serious wakeup call to everyone. The partying among myself and everyone I knew went on a massive decline—and for me, personally, I took it as a sign to keep putting in the work and being my best self because we’re not here forever. Losing Joyce left an immense hole in my heart, and in that of so many who she touched throughout years of being such a prominent figure in the media world I’ve been a part of. She was the first person I met when I started working in entertainment reporting.
Her passing in her late ’40s was a reminder that life is short. In the past, I found myself living for other peoples’ approval and caring way too much about what they think. Now, I was finally developing the confidence to just live my life. I stopped focusing on past mistakes, and instead put my efforts into plowing ahead with gratitude, worth and drive.
Little did I know, one month later, everything would change—in a way no one in my lifetime could have predicted. I’ll never forget the day before coronavirus sent everyone into lockdown. I was fresh from visiting my parents in Orange County—at a now-long-gone Souplantation, for that matter. I raced back to L.A. to sneak in one more Hot Pilates class with a friend of mine, oddly looking forward to being forced inside our living spaces later that day. Working from home was a dream for years—who knew it would take a pandemic for my then-employer to understand people can function away from their cubicle (more on that in a bit)!
Quarantine Life Kicks In, as Does My Personal Empowerment Journey
Closing my apartment door behind me for what would go on to be days before even stepping outside for air, I felt amazing. Like, the best I’ve ever felt in my life. I was certainly not at ease with the way of the world and the businesses being affected so abruptly and unexpectedly. But internally, I was incredibly stable. And as the days turned into weeks, and weeks turned into cold, gloomy months, living alone during a pandemic continued to be a positive experience for me. I cooked all of my meals; spent my days working out and writing, as opposed to wasting away with a bottle of wine; I thought about the future and how much promise it held. I was so optimistic and really enjoyed my own company. I never felt bored—I had everything I needed.
I physically didn’t see anyone for a month and a half. I also kept my social Zoom activity to a minimum (so glad I never hopped on that trend), so the virtual hangs were also few and far between. I continued working on myself, working out or walking up my strenuous hill regularly. The lack of regular drinking also helped me maintain a clear head, and I kept myself busy with my full-time job, freelance job and revival of this blog. I became so comfortable with quarantine life that there were points when I firmly said I never need to hang out with anyone again. People asked me time and time again, are you ok? Would the single, social butterfly survive a pandemic, holed-up solo in her one-bedroom apartment? Oh, I was better than ok.
While people lamented over their weight-gain, gluttony and binge-drinking, I just kept my eyes on the prize, assuring myself and others that by the time quarantine were to end (during what was initially predicted to be summertime), I’d come out of this cocoon a butterfly. Heck, even myhomemade manis were on point.
While filled with so much hope, confidence and motivation, I began to notice things around me that perhaps weren’t as vivid before. These things were always present, but they never fazed me because I was always fortunately occupied with work and an active social life. Now, however, no matter how content I was in this totally alone predicament, I couldn’t help but think about the couples in my friend group who were able to sneak away on road trips together, or cozy-up on stormy days. During these locked-away months, so many people I knew were getting pregnant, having babies, launching businesses, strengthening their relationships. All the while, I was taking cute mirror selfies and posting my home-cooked meals.
The pandemic has been a strong reminder that I’m single—with no near end in sight. It’s not even to say that I mind being single. But my goodness, it would be nice to have the option otherwise. I went on a few nice dates amid the pandemic (that didn’t lead to anything), but I miss hitting the local spots and letting the vodka-sodas coax me into talking to, like, the literal tree outside. No, but seriously, it was fun getting dolled-up and socializing out and about. Especially right before lockdown, there was a magical energy in the air. Life felt particularly exciting in all aspects, and then—.
What started out empowering, motivating and life-changing slowly spiraled into time that felt wasted in retrospect. Now, by no means was this my fault—it’s just how timing decided to play out. I still maintained a relatively positive disposition, but it was growing tiring.
The motivation to work out from home was lessening by the day. I really miss ClassPass and the structure provided by doing in-person workouts. Cooking all my meals? Ha, forget it! Only drinking on Sundays? Nah, once outdoor dining was reinstated, all bets were off! I previously put so much effort into my life—and while I enjoyed it internally, it would have been nice to experience it with someone else (friend, romantic partner, whoever!).
While I still had a good chunk of the initial confidence left in me, I will say the 24/7 happy-go-lucky mindset of March/April/May/June was dwindling. Happiness dwindling, workouts lessening, sleeping—well, that may as well not even exist.
As the year continued—and especially from the end of August, on—I felt myself growing further and further away from that bright light I associate with who I was earlier in the year. I promised I wouldn’t compare myself to others, but boy was I ever. It was unstoppable. It seemed like everyone I know did something remarkable amid the pandemic. I really thought this would be my time, too. Instead, I could feel my vibrations lowering. I’m really big on vibrations and energy, and when they’re low, they’re low. It can take days to heighten. And it was visible (without being visible) via social media. People can seriously feel your energy behind the screen. My posts lacked the vibrance and excitable engagement that transpired months ago. And I’m not a fake, so I couldn’t just make things seem perfect.
I know I’ve grown as a person through this whole experience. I mean, I was able to enjoy my own company for at least six weeks without seeing a soul, and then plenty of alone time thereafter. I honed in on my cooking skills. I took some cute Instagram pics (priorities, priorities). I stopped standing for toxic behavior in other people. I have a strong head on my shoulders and I know what I want in life and from others. I just wish I could get myself back to the same mindset of months past.
My new lackluster reality was ever-present once fall found its way to the calendar. Traditionally three months of internal butterflies and unconditional bliss was in fact three months of scorching hot weather, sleepless nights and lonely days. There was plenty we were banned from doing this year, thanks to the pandemic—but nothing hit like not gearing up for my 8th annual fall party, not hitting the bars the night before/after Thanksgiving, and not getting dolled-up for holiday parties. The last three months blurred together. Even fall scents gave me a headache this year. I’ve never said that.
Blessing in Disguise
In an unexpected turn of events, I got laid-off from my job in September after more than 4.5 years with the company. Before you feel sorry for me, know that it was a blessing in disguise. Our salaries were already cut by 40% at the very beginning of the pandemic, and I was totally stagnant at this company. Of course you want to leave on your own terms, but screw my pride—I received the news and never looked back. In fact, most of the brands and publicists I worked with prior continued their professional relationships with me immediately as I pivoted over to my blog and freelance job. I felt appreciated, and it made the transition that much easier.
While not the happiest news in financial terms, energetically, this freed up so much space: space to look for a fulfilling new job that makes me feel valued and respected; space to put serious effort into my blog; space to finally launch the T-shirt line I put into existence exactly a year ago. I gave away so much of my energy at this job and got minimal amounts back in return, so when I received the news, that was the instance amid the pandemic when the timing felt so right.
Looking for a new job, however, is a huge challenge. I’m not gonna lie. For all the experience you have, there are 100 people younger than you with far more skills. It’s not easy getting back into the grind of writing cover letters—cover letters! I know, right? Filling out just one job application can sometimes take up to an hour. Having a professional update my resume cost more than $100. But this is part of life, obviously. And I was far too comfortable in my position anyway. This has definitely given me a much-needed rattle.
2020 Reflection, and Transitioning Into the New Year Ahead
Moving forward, I will say this: I’m extremely blessed not to have contracted the virus up to this point. I’m blessed that none of my close friends or family have been severely affected by the virus in any way up to this point. I’m blessed to have a roof over my head (with a beautiful view of the city that helps keep me sane); to have close friends I’ve kept in contact with consistently over the course of the past year; to have a new laptop that’s seriously my go-to and best friend; to have a family who supports my future and believes in endless possibilities for me; to be alone with my own thoughts (and be ok with them); to have launched a small business at the tail-end of the year, with the drive to make it take off in 2021.
I do have many blessings and I don’t take them for granted. That said, it’s only normal to think what if?. I’m sure that’s a thought on a lot of peoples’ minds this year. But there are many things that did happen because of what held me back. My mindset improved tremendously not having to commute to and from work each day. Being home gave me the extra time and energy to focus on more important things than driving. And being let go from my job was the unconventional gift from the universe that I needed. I can only continue doing my best and giving myself the life I deserve, being the person I want to be. I gave this year my all, and I truly have no regrets outside of things that weren’t in my control.
Now, as we embark on a new year, I find myself in a focused headspace. I’m embracing lockdown restrictions and staying in my apartment. I’m back to cooking most of my meals. I can’t remember the last time I stopped in the alcohol aisle at a grocery store. I’m doing daily face masks and lighting winter candles that are putting me in the best mood. I’m doing the best I can. While I’m nowhere near where I was in the heightened month of June, I’m realizing that this year wasn’t a waste, and that everything I took away from it will go into something bigger in time to come.
I think the challenge lies in what’s next. As noted above, January has always been a strong month. It’s full of new energy and opportunity. There are always fun events and a ton of birthday parties. I honestly don’t know what to anticipate this time around, since much of that will be nonexistent. I’m trying to stay positive—ebbs and flows are a part of life—but I’m pretty sure I’ll be watching the ball drop in my head live and direct from my couch this year. I can’t remember the last time I didn’t spend NYE with people who are important to me. It’s always been a really special date for me personally, even though a lot of people hate the holiday.
Ultimately, when I look back on it all, I’m fond of my experience living alone during a pandemic. I feel strengthened from it, and I’m proud of the positive outlook I maintained amid the vast majority of this experience. I kept myself busy and focused. I loved having the time to explore whatever I wanted (whether that be in the kitchen, with makeup, with my writing, with TikTok, with whatever). And while I initially dressed up, oversized sweatshirts and leggings are where I’m at now—and I wouldn’t have it any other way. I can’t say I know where my life is headed next, but energetically speaking, I’m welcoming positivity with open arms.
2021 will be my year. I’m putting that out into the universe!
If you want continue on this path of reflection, click HERE for skyelyfe’s definitive ranking of the 20 best songs of the 2010s.
Holiday shopping for a coworker, a Secret Santa, or for someone’s Christmas stocking? Depending on how well you know the person, gift-giving can be a challenge—especially if you want to buy something practical yet cost effective. Enter: bathroom gifts.
Everyone has a bathroom—and whether they like it or not, they’re forced to spend quite some time in it. That said, you really can’t go wrong with swooping up something for the loo.
Whether it’s a soap, a candle, an aroma or a bath accompaniment, trust us when we say bathroom gifts are always welcome. Keep reading for 10 bathroom essentials under $25 that anyone will want in their stocking.
Candles and holiday season go hand-in-hand, and this adorably designed Santa candle will make the perfect bathroom beauty counter adornment in the weeks ahead. This all-natural scent of “holiday spice” was hand-poured in Los Angeles, with partial proceeds benefitting rising local artists.
What bathroom stocking stuffer guide could possibly be complete without some kind of dental hygiene product, amirite? Davids’ colorful, eco-friendly toothpastes not only make for a pretty accent on the beauty counter, but they come in a handful of flavors—including this recently released, uniquely satisfying, Herbal Citrus Peppermint. Promoting natural whitening, anti-plaque and fresh breath, you really can’t go wrong with this Goop-approved purchase!
Fragrances are personal, yes—but when it comes to most people’s bathrooms, the goal is typically to keep things light and fresh-scented. Paddywax’s bite-sized Fresh Air reed diffuser neutralizes the bathroom’s air, while adding refreshing hints of eucalyptus, marine, jasmine and sea salt to the room. Added bonus? The reeds come in a sleek, blue, glass bottle that’ll make quite the chic addition to anyone’s bathroom beauty counter.
Bubbly Belle’s deliciously scented bath bombs are not just any ol’ bath bombs. Each of these handmade tub accompaniments contains its own unique bling when the bomb dissolves—so you’re basically gifting a 2-in-1 treat. We love this melting snowman in particular because it’s just too cute. And who can go wrong with combined aromas of Christmas tree, sandalwood and vanilla? All your recipient need is a festive candle, and their next bathtub experience is sure to top them all.
Barefoot Scientist Sleep On It Overnight Moisturizing Gel Socks: $22
Pedis have always been in, but day-to-day footcare maintenance? Not so much. That is, until Barefoot Scientist—the first skincare line solely devoted to feet—came onto the scene in 2019. With its sleek packaging and easy, effective products that match any concern, it’s put this new wave of self-care on the map. The brand’s overnight gel socks are a must for any gift recipient. Not only do they come in a fuzzy, turquoise-colored material that’s easy to wear around the house, but they’re infused with a soft, scientifically formulated moisturizing gel that boosts skin’s nightly regenerative processes. Releasing an antioxidant-rich blend of shea butter, argan oil, rose oil, jojoba oil and vitamin E over the entire foot, users will wake up with feet that are more supple and smooth—a must for these dry, winter days ahead.
ModiBodi Period Underwear: $24 (one pair, moderate-heavy protection)
Save someone bathroom space, convenience and significant cash by snagging them a pair of ModiBodi period panties. While perhaps not the sexiest of options, it may, in fact, be among the most savvy (and best for the environment!). We’ve tried these ourselves and they really are shockingly leakproof on even the heaviest of days. They’re comfy, easy to clean and can be worn time and time again. It’s probably not the gift your recipient expects, so it’ll be a pleasant surprise when they receive an item they never knew they needed!
Ah, leave it to none other than Poo~Pourri to liven-up the glorious act of going No. 2 (ugh, grossed out just writing this). The brand, known for its array of pre-poop toilet sprays, created a festive assortment of scents (with joyful names to boot!) to spritz before you squat. Complete with traditional holiday aromas of black currant, sandalwood, pine, bergamot and more, you’re sure to get your scent-ual fix from these pocket-sized products.
Elevate someone’s bathtub experience by capping off a cleanse and clean shave with this best-seller from OSEA. Fresh from the Malibu ocean, undaria seaweed is infused into a blend of luscious seed oils—açai, babassu and passionfruit—to hydrate, firm skin and reduce the appearance of stretch marks.
Jo Malone Lime Basil & Mandarin Body & Hand Wash: $25
When it comes to luxe bathroom gifts, Jo Malone is it. And snagging anything associated with their signature Lime Basil & Mandarin scent at a whopping $25 is the ultimate steal. This iconic aroma is not only the brand’s longtime standout, but also a classic when it comes to fragrances altogether. Treat someone to the ultimate bathroom beauty counter flex with this body and hand wash that’s sure to wow.
West Elm Organic Dashed-Line Sculpted Shower Towel, Dark Horseradish: $24.50
There’s no such thing as too many shower towels, and this durable, cotton-woven make from West Elm is sure to please. The gold accents and modern design keep things stylish, while the rich, plush texture is sure to keep its wearer warmly bundled-up in the chilly days ahead.
Need more gift-giving ideas? Click HERE for our ultimate beauty and wellness gift guide!
Nothing’s worse than feeling like your S.O.’s garb is cramping your style (no pun intended). Whether you cohabitate or simply spend a lot of time together, your overlap of clothing is bound to get in the way. That’s why, if you’re dating a dude, make your life easier by figuring out what to steal from your boyfriend’s closet.
While gender norms have greatly gone out the window (at least in L.A.), plenty of clothing articles are obviously still designated for men. Therefore, we’re here to help you keep your man’s wardrobe growing, while benefitting in the process. Especially with holiday season around the corner, why not swoop up something that will (secretly) appease both of you?
To break down the best items to buy for your BF (only to steal them from their closet), we reached out to BJ Panda Bear. BJ is the cofounder of fashion and lifestyle e-commerce space, QooA—keep reading for his 5 musts!
The democratic experience of the mini bag is something anyone can enjoy and embrace. It’s a statement of love if you really know the persons taste, or rather the value of neutral colors to steal into your own selection.
When you think about what to steal from your boyfriend’s closet, the classic hoodie’s the most natural first thought. The ’50s-era equivalent of wearing of your BF’s letterman jacket in today’s TikTok times is surely the worn-in hoodie, is it not?
Versace Versace Versace/Gucci Gucci Gucci… We kid… sorta. But really, any brand with the most boisterous prints will do. Play with the XXL size. It might be a luxuriant and playful gift for him, but it will soon be a wrap dress belted for you.
Now that you know what to steal from your boyfriend’s closet, be grateful because you also get to avoid THESE obnoxious dating profiles.
I’m all about natural forms of healing. I struggle with anxiety and I subconsciously hold on to the past, so this affects my day-to-day life. I’ve received reiki many times, I’ve used healing crystals and I’ve even taken a special full moon healing bath which required tons of preparation. And, as of a month ago, I’ve been using virtual sound baths because I can’t fall asleep.
Sound healing is a powerful form of meditation. This is a different turn for me because I’ve never been a meditation kind of gal. It’s hard getting out of my head and sitting still for so long. After completing a traditional meditation session, I’ve never felt any differently—but you need to do it consistently. Recently, the founder of a major meditation studio in L.A. reached out about trying her new app. And that’s when things changed.
I likely have more restless nights than the average person, but there was a recent evening in particular that my mind was all TikTok’d out and I would’ve given anything to fall asleep. I downloaded the aforementioned app—and rather than opt for a guided meditation, I clicked on one of the sound healing selections. The 40-minute session required nothing more than for me to lie down, close my eyes and be able to hear. I kid you not, it knocked me out in five minutes. Sleeping pills wake me up in the middle of the night after they wear off; sleepy teas make me have to use the restroom in the middle of the night; CBD products give me crazy dreams. In other words, nothing’s worked up to this point.
I’ve gone to sound baths at various L.A. venues, and I’ve fallen asleep pretty shortly into the sessions. But honestly, I thought my simple snooze-fest resulted from my workplace, which zapped all my energy. The office always left me exhausted, but now I realize I actually fell asleep for a deeper reason.
I’ve been so excited to share my life-changing discovery with others that I reached out to Roxie Sarhangi, better known in cyberspace as @roxiesoundhealing. Keep reading for Roxie’s amazing tips on how to use sound healing to fall asleep.
skyelyfe: How did you get involved in sound healing?
Roxie Sarhangi: The first time I recall hearing the powerful sound of a gong in person was in a yoga class during Savasana. This was about a decade or so ago. It was a momentous visceral experience. I felt the vibration deep within my chest, and it brought my mind immediately to the present moment. I remember leaving, wanting to experience the gong for a longer period of time.
The first sound bath I experienced was in Ojai with Tibetian bowls, and it felt so calming and deeply relaxing. The ethereal sound really captivated me, so from there, I went to sound baths all over L.A. I decided I wanted to learn how to share it with others, so I became a certified sound healer practitioner in 2018.
SL: What were your initial experiences with it when you were exploring just for fun?
RS: I touched upon this above, but essentially, I always like to stay curious and have a learner’s mind. Sound healing is esoteric, unique and feels powerful. I loved the idea of everyone getting together to better themselves in this unique environment. I definitely wasn’t planning on becoming a sound healer!
SL: What’s the science behind sound healing and its ability to ease tension and assist with sleep ailments?
RS: Sound healing affects brain waves to slow down to a profoundly relaxing and restorative state. Notes of the crystal bowls are tuned to the seven chakras and energy centers. These help recenter us when we’re out of alignment. They’re also tuned to 432 hertz, the vibrational frequency of nature. If you think about it, everything has a frequency. Every living element in our body emits a frequency. The frequency of the crystal bowls is often described as a sound of the “universe.”
I’ll also play the symphonic gong, one of the oldest instruments. Its roots trace back to around 3500 B.C. The gong is used to release tension and blocks in the body, stimulating a higher functioning of the glandular and nervous system. I’ve heard many attendees share that they have the best sleep after sound healing. They’re in a deeply relaxed state primed for sleep, so that is why. As I understand it, you’re essentially moving from alpha and theta brainwave state. This occurs during sound healing to the next state—delta brain waves—which occurs during sleep. That’s one of the reasons why sound healing feels so magical to me!
SL: What’s the best way for a newbie to maximize their experience with sound healing?
RS: One of the many reasons I love sound healing is that it requires very little doing of the participant, mainly showing up! I approach it as easy, effortless, and transcendent. The more you can relax, the more you can receive the sounds. I recommend giving yourself the gift of coming into the experience as relaxed as possible, without pushing. If you go to an in-person session, allow plenty of time to drive to the location, park and get settled. Bring items that can allow you to feel cozy and good. A blanket, pillow, and perhaps an eye mask. Set yourself up to feel your best.
If you do an at-home sound bath, then light a candle, sage, or palo santo. Put yourself in a physical space that feels relaxing and healing. When I do in-person sessions, they’re always at inspiring locations such as the 1 Hotel West Hollywood on their rooftop deck under the night sky. We’re under a stunning large-scale sculpture, Dream Catcher by Janet Echelman. Our brainwaves when we dream is what inspired the sculpture. How perfect for sound healing!
When you can walk into an environment and feel uplifted, it makes an impact. If the space feels inspiring, you begin to feel inspired. Your space is very important. Another location I enjoy is at a museum style gallery, Barakat Gallery. Centuries-old artifacts, sculptures and life-size Buddhas surrounded us during our event last year. There’s an ineffable sense of depth and soul in a space like that.
SL: Are there any particular sound healing apps or YouTube videos/channels you recommend people listen to as they fall asleep?
RS: I don’t know if there are any apps only for sound healing, but that’s a great idea! I know there are sound healing sessions on Calm app, Insight Timer and YouTube. I also have a YouTube channel and IGTV with free sound healing sessions that I know souls listen to before bed.
SL: Is there anything else you’d like to add about your specific practice or sound healing in general?
RS: I feel truly honored to share sound healing. Sound is primordial. It’s the first vibration ever experienced. It is so powerful. I am constantly in awe of the power of sound. Thank you for asking me to share more about sound healing! See you under the influence of sound.
*Roxie is launching her 11 Days of Sound Healing this Friday (Oct. 16) in honor of the New Moon. To learn more or sign up, click HERE.
For more incredible healing tips and techniques, click HERE.
Today is World Mental Health Day, and after a frustrating sleep and dreams that plagued my mindset, I woke up feeling kind of crappy. I generally maintain a positive disposition and have a bright outlook on life. But that doesn’t mean I’m not a victim of thoughts in my head that spiral out of control.
Mental health isn’t a one-size-fits-all type of issue. Sometimes it’s affected by chemical imbalances; other times it’s situational. Sometimes even the slightest occurrence or thought can trigger our minds into a war zone. I’ve never had suicidal thoughts, but I’ve definitely been debilitated by what’s gone on in my mind.
When I was growing up, we were instructed to go to the dentist every six months and get our yearly physical at the doctor’s office. No one ever talked about the other stuff. If you saw a psychologist, you were crazy. If you took meds, there was something deeply wrong. I’m glad that present times have made our mental health an important conversation, because let’s face it—no one is A-OK 100% of the time.
Just because you don’t have a psychological diagnosis doesn’t mean your mental health doesn’t take its toll from time to time. We don’t have emotional memory, so when we’re at a low point, we don’t remember the feeling we had just yesterday, for example, when we were at a high.
There are days when things just feel off and sometimes all you can do is accept the situation and live in it. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve sat in bed all day and wallowed lonesome because people have their own lives to live. The harsh reality is I’m no one’s priority but my own. I have some amazing close friends, but no one can be at my beck and call consistently. And let’s face it: People are attracted to vibrant energy. It’s not always easy for someone to set aside their happy-go-lucky afternoon to devote their own energy to your bad day. It’s not because they don’t care, but they have their own stuff to deal with.
As tough as those dark days are, things get better—they always do. As low as I can feel one moment is as high as I can feel two days later. On the days when I feel the world caving down on me and can barely get out of bed, I remind myself that I’ve made it through 30-something years—I can make it one more day. Sometimes it’s easier said than done, but it really is possible to crawl out from the darkness.
Whether I’m struggling or not, here are six effective habits that help clear my head.
1. I Keep Instagram Story-Watching to a Minimum
If you follow me on IG, you might think I’m obsessed with the app. I post pretty regularly and engage frequently on photos that pop up on my feed. Simply being on the app isn’t an issue for me. I love having a platform to showcase my skills and passions, and to connect with amazing people and brands I may have not otherwise.
That said, being too consumed with others’ Stories is where the issue lies. I taught myself early on that seeing what everyone is doing at all times of the day isn’t going to get me anywhere. Some people are fulfilled by knowing everyone’s every move. I, on the other hand, feel like being privy to that information only clouds the head more. So yes, while I’m happy to share my life on the app, it’s important for my mental health that I pick and choose what I let into my space from others.
2. I Press the Reset Button Every Six Months
My twice-yearly Whole30 journey can definitely be seen as extreme, and I don’t think it’s for everyone. But in general, I do think it’s imperative to press the reset button from time to time. We all have our vices and distractions that keep us from being our best selves and seeing our goals come to fruition.
By removing some of my biggest roadblocks for 30 days (or two weeks or however long you deem necessary), I’m re-centering myself. It’s a fresh start with a new perspective. Our bodies and minds are like internet or computers—they often stop working effectively until you power down and restart. The reset button doesn’t mean deep-rooted issues dissipate; it just gives you time to work on yourself without the outliers that cloud the mind.
3. I Protect My Energy
Now more than ever, the universe is forcing us to be selective in every aspect of our lives. A pandemic gives you the easy way out to just about anything. But aside from forced mandates, all this time spent at home and not in traffic (hallelujah) has allowed me to restructure my priorities. I no longer feel obligated to partake in something or spend time with someone just because it’s the right thing to do. I’m only doing what feels right for me. I don’t need to do things to “be nice” if it’s only compromising my energy and headspace.
4. I Partake in Activities That Raise My Vibrations
It’s no secret that the minute you put alcohol or any other mild-altering substance into your body, your vibrations go way down (even if you’re having the time of your life). If my mental health is taking a hit or I simply just want to feel my best, there’s no way I can incorporate alcohol into part of my plan.
But outside of that, when I’m cooking, walking, working out, writing, sharing information with people or spending quality time with people who bring out the best in me, I’m naturally raising my vibrations. And those high times are when I attract the best things in life. There are simply those days in which my energy is at a low and I can’t seem to change it. But that’s okay—the more I practice high-vibrational routines, the quicker I can get back up to speed.
5. I Take a Shower and Wash My Hair
You may be thinking uhh to this one, but hear me out. Showers and something we take for granted. And a lot of the time they’re super rushed. But the next time you find your head clogged, have a good rinse (including hair) and actually pay attention to how different you feel. It’s pretty awesome to notice much of that angst wash away down the drain with some of your split ends.
6. I Remember That I’m on My Journey and They’re on Theirs
I’m very fortunate in that I’m surrounded by incredibly hard-working friends who are all successful in their own right. And a number of them are not only thriving in the workplace, but in their romantic and domestic lives, too. That can at times be daunting when you stack up your lifetime accomplishments to theirs. But it’s not worth it. Yes, there are days that are hard, or times when I’m like, wait, why wasn’t I handed that deck? But not everything is easy for anyone. We’re all figuring it out. I have to remind myself to just keep doing my best and (No. 5) keep those vibrations high. The rest will come.
If you’re feeling a bit down and out, HERE are some of the best ways to heal your energy.
Some people stick to traditional spring cleaning, but I’m personally a huge proponent of doing it during autumn. There are always more things to get rid of when decluttering towards the end of the year than during Q2.
So yes, currently, as temps drop and leaves fall, I’m at peace going through endless drawers and closets filled with what I once thought I couldn’t part with. It’s the most freeing feeling, and I’m thisclose to being where I want to be with my environmental energy.
Whether during spring, fall or any season at all, getting rid of lingering belongings is always a good idea. That’s why I reached out to Decluttering for Dummies author, Jane Stoller. While doing this is important, like any other big project, it’s a daunting, time-consuming task.
“We’re busy—when we come home, we’re too tired or overwhelmed to even think about decluttering,” Jane tells skyelyfe. “I hope to change that mindset gradually, and not only show that decluttering is fun but it can be incorporated into your daily routine naturally. Though, nowadays we’re all working from home and many have made time to declutter!”
Kicking off a round up of decluttering is much like starting anything else.
“Ease into it the same way you would when starting a new exercise routine,” Jane explains. “Schedule daily or weekly decluttering into your calendar to hold yourself accountable and beat the overwhelming feelings. The goal is that decluttering will happen naturally once you make this process a habit.”
Keep reading for Jane’s list of six things to get rid of when decluttering.
1. Anything That Steals Your Energy
This is the time to get real. Look at each space in your home and workspaces and dig deep. They may look okay on the surface, but I want you to really acknowledge where disasters lie. Hidden drawers, piled magazines from three years ago, or antique furniture you can’t get rid of, haven’t used for years, but definitely steals your energy each time you have to dust its intricate details. Get real with yourself. Allow the energy you feel when you enter rooms and go towards each item to help you.
2. Most of What’s Packed Away in Closets or Other Storage Spaces
Anything taking up space is therefore taking up precious real estate. There are some common items that many of us store at home and they never see the light of day, or, we even have a separate off-site storage unit (and we shouldn’t be paying for it).
Furniture should be used, not stored. If you don’t use it, why are you keeping it?
By the time you find them, they’re either too old, are no longer relevant, or have been ruined by dust or the elements. Technology moves fast, so don’t store electronics.
Old Travel Bags
Not a week goes by that I don’t see an ad for the latest new travel bag or suitcase that’s lighter, more functional, has wireless charging, you name it! Holding onto old suitcases and travel bags is unnecessary. Keep your travel items up-to-date if you travel frequently—and if you don’t travel, then why do you have these in the first place? Plus, airlines are getting stricter with weight and sizes, so traveling with your old huge and heavy suitcases probably isn’t the best idea.
It always bothers me when photos are stored in attics because no one can ever see them! Photos are meant to be viewed, especially if you took the time to print them. They should be taken care of, not stuffed in a box where they’re likely getting ruined.
Packing Material and Empty Boxes
Get rid of these ASAP.
3. Photos of Your Ex (and Their Items)
This is definitely in the past! Memories and items, especially from past loved ones, are precious, and I completely respect that and want you to keep whatever brings you the most happiness. The key is to be selective in what you keep. Going through your sentimental items should be a joy, and the more selective you are about how much you keep, the better the process will be.
4. Anything That Can’t Be Used
While we know that trash is the most obvious clutter, everyone’s definition of “trash” can also be different. As the saying goes, “One’s man’s junk is another man’s treasure.” But a rule of thumb is anything broken or expired that cannot be donated should be quickly decluttered.
If it’s a document you need, scan it and upload it to the Cloud or any online drive of your own preference. Recycle all of your loose papers and shift to a digital mindset going forward.
Rethink buying in bulk in the first place. On the same theme of determining how much you should keep, I encourage you to change your mindset and keep only one of something where you have many, and make it count. Hanging onto multiples or bulk-saving will not make your items more special.
Especially bathroom products! I think being prepared for anything is important, from earthquakes to having spare toothpaste so you don’t have to run to the store at midnight. However, I don’t agree with storing multiples of all your bathroom products and certainly not more than one extra of each. If you’re at Costco and you see your exact moisturizer on sale in a set of 20, think twice. Will they expire before you’re even ready to use them? Will you switch moisturizers next month? Will your skin type change? Are you willing to give up your precious real estate in the bathroom for these to sit for possibly years?
Now that you know what things to get rid of when decluttering, click HERE for expert tips on how to take the best #OOTD selfies.
When we think of “self-care,” what initially comes to mind are doctor and dentist appointments, working out, cutting out toxic people and meditation—to name a few.
While indeed our mind and body are of utmost importance, there are actually a handful of lesser considered actions that will not only make you feel better about yourself, but will exhibit to others that you value who you are and how you’re presented. After all, caring about yourself encompasses how you treat the things you own, too.
Because self-care is crucial now more than ever, keep reading for four important self-care tips you probably don’t think about (but should!).
1. Ditch the Cracked Phone
We’re all guilty of walking around with a cracked phone at some point. It’s kind of a rite of passage. Have you really lived if you’ve never rocked a shattered iPhone? But part of “self-care” is properly looking after your belongings (especially expensive ones!). Your phone is almost as prominent of an accessory as your hair. There are times it’ll be tucked away in your handbag, but let’s not kid ourselves—for the most part, our phones are always on full display. Not only does a cracked screen probably stress you out each time you look at it, but it exhibits to others that you may be lazy and careless. Keep your screen (and its accompanying case, for that matter) clean and pristine.
2. Keep Your Car Clean (Inside and Out)
Think of your car as an extended version of your bedroom. Depending on how much you drive, you could spend almost equal amount of time in both! When your living space is cluttered or dirty, it stresses you out, right? Well, likely same for your car. Get rid of the empty soda cans, the old piled-up papers, books, cups, weird cords, whatever the case may be. It doesn’t matter if you drive a brand new BMW or a 2001 Honda Civic—keeping your car completely decluttered clears out energy and gives you a more relaxed mind while you’re on the road, which is stressful enough in itself. And while you’re at it, give that bad boy a regular exterior wash as well. Does it ever feel good looking like you just drove through the Dust Bowl?
3. Don’t Wear Clothes With Stains, Tears or Wrinkles
How you dress is up to you. While not everyone has the budget to dress to the nines, nor does everyone even enjoy dressing up, there are some things in everyone‘s control. Whether you rock a casual tee and jeans or you’re decked out in designer duds, put in minimal effort by avoiding items with obvious stains, tears or wrinkles. Again, part of self-care is looking after your belongings, not just your mind and body. Your clothes are a part of you, so wear them well. Put in the extra work by dropping things off at a dry cleaner or tailor—and most importantly, always keep a hand-held steamer by your side. These on-the-go gadgets work wonders—wrinkle-free is the way to be!
4. Make Your Bed Each Morning
You hear this one all the time, but it’s easy to overlook. Based on our hectic schedule or the fact that we live alone or don’t expect anyone to see our bed, we let this task fall to the wayside. But next time you consider passing it by, try making your bed (it doesn’t have to be perfect), and pay attention to the difference you feel when you get under the covers that night to go to sleep. Everything’s in the right place, allowing you to slip under the sheets and rest easy. Additionally, it really throws the whole room together. A clean room with a messy bed is simply a messy room. You don’t want that, right?
For more tips to bettering yourself, click HERE for best wellness practices suggested by experts during the pandemic.
Although we have mixed feelings about the long-running reality show, we have to give credit where credit is due. It was filled with iconic and hilarious moments we’ll truly never forget. Not only were we working at E! when the show premiered (crazy, right?), we also relate to much of its L.A.-focused lifestyle.
Whether you’re ecstatic about this news or completely heartbroken, check out the nine best Twitter reactions to the show’s 2021 demise below!
1. Some were most definitely in the ‘ecstatic’ camp:
2. While others were legitimately broken by this news:
3. Others simply celebrated the exemplary moments:
4. One knew what’s happening behind the scenes:
5. A few knew it’s all part of the grand plan:
6. And another uncovered an even more sophisticated scheme:
7. Some considered Kris Jenner’s prospective career in screen writing:
8. Many started popping the champagne:
9. And some threw major shade to both Kourtney and Zayn Malik:
The one who was once seemingly timid or didn’t care that much about Instagram, and is suddenly posing in front of the mirror every chance they get. Weird, right? Well, maybe not so much.
Amid quarantine, we’ve been restructuring our friend groups, behaviors and what we do in our spare time. If you’re suddenly showing off your outfit every single day, let yourself live. Not only is it fun to get others’ feedback (and hopeful approval), but it’s a way to express yourself, and you shouldn’t be ashamed.
But if you’re going to do it, you may as well do it right… right? We reached out to blogger Sydne Summer of SydneStyle.com, who explains how to ace that solo shot. The fashion influencer just started selling her own line of gorgeous face masks, so if you’re having trouble posing perfectly while incorporating your protective COVID gear into the shot, look no further.
Keep reading for her decade-long expertise on how to take the best #OOTD selfies if it’s become your new quarantine hobby.
skyelyfe: Why is now a better time than ever to show off your outfits on IG?
Sydne Summer: With so much time on their hands, people are more engaged than ever on Instagram. It’s a great time to for content! Outfits bring hope that better days are to come.
SL: Because we’re inside the majority of quarantine, what are your best tips for taking indoor shots?
SS: Lighting is key. If possible, stand in front of a window or balcony. Try to shoot when the sun is the brightest outside, around midday. If you don’t have natural light in your space, there are tons of inexpensive light options you can order on Amazon: https://shopstyle.it/l/bfllg. If you use a light inside your home, decrease the warmth in your photo or video to get rid of the yellow light.
SL: What are necessary props, colors or anything else you have in mind to amp up an otherwise mundane shot?
SS: People respond really well to color on Instagram. If you’re more into neutrals with your outfits, think about adding a bright color lip.
SL: What are your tips for amping up an athleisure or loungewear look?
SS: Accessories! A statement earring instantly glams up a loungewear look. A fun scrunchie or headband makes an athleisure look more stylish.
SL: What are your tips for taking mirror selfies?
SS: Again, lighting, lighting, lighting. Always try to make sure the light source is directed at your face.
SL: Anything else of note on selfies or #OOTDs?
SS: I have a whole video on how to pose for photos! Practice makes perfect. Now is a great time to perfect your poses for the best outfit photos of the day! https://youtu.be/pUYoL36rUTg And don’t forget to smile! We could all use more smiles over RBF in our feeds.
Quarantine and social distancing has done a number on every relationship (romantic or otherwise)—but more than ever, couples who just started dating, or who didn’t necessarily plan on living together just yet have been put to the test.
When lockdown demands first came into play, not only were people quick to cohabitate unexpectedly, but even longtime couples were given their own set of hurdles. Adapting to being with someone literally 24/7 is challenging for anyone, especially depending on the demands of work, allotted living space and individual lifestyle.
More than three months into social distancing and people are reflecting on where their relationship stands. For better or worse, is how you dealt with your partner amid quarantine an indicator of where you stand longterm? We reached out to Dr. Terri Orbuch (aka The Love Doctor®), a professor at Oakland University in Michigan, who explains what the outcome of your quarantine means for your relationship. Keep reading for what she had to say.
skyelyfe: What kind of relationships thrive in quarantine conditions with their partner?
Terri Orbuch: There are relationships that were already distressed or not doing well before quarantine. When these distressed relationships are stressed from things outside the relationship—like the coronavirus pandemic, this stress can exacerbate the issues and problems. Also, when distressed relationships are stressed, the stress makes it more difficult to connect with each other, less likely to see the positives in each other and the relationship, and less likely have empathy and understanding for the other partner. However, people who were in relationships that weren’t already distressed—those relationships can survive and even thrive if they do some simple strategies.
SL: What are keys to making these situations work effectively?
TO: A) Share your anxieties, concerns and fears with each other. Whether you’re living together or not, you can share your concerns with each other, because otherwise, the anxieties fester inside of you, and then work on your physical health. Don’t talk about the fears nonstop 24/7, but instead set a specific time to share.
B) Accept that you and your partner may have different reactions to the stress and quarantine. One of you may watch the news all the time, the other partner may not. These differences in how you handle or react to the situation don’t mean that your relationship is in trouble or should end. These differences are common to all romantic relationships.
C) Find fun activities to do together. These are very challenging times, but couples who do fun things together are more likely to thrive. Take a virtual cooking class online together, start a puzzle together, play board games, do an exercise class together online. Or if you’re not living together, make regular virtual dates where you do something you both enjoy together (e.g., take a virtual tour of the local zoo, play Pictionary, watch a movie “together” on Netflix.
D) Give each other space. It’s important in any romantic relationship that each of you have time, space and privacy from one another, particularly now. Don’t say “I need space” because it sends confusing signals. Instead: “I need some time to do X this afternoon”. Enjoy your space and don’t feel guilty.
SL: What does it mean if you and someone you truly love aren’t cohabitating effectively amid quarantine?
TO: It’s challenging to live with your partner 24/7 amidst quarantine. Most couples have never spent this much time together, just the two of you, with no other distractions or people. This is a very different time. It takes great patience, understanding, empathy and understanding that relationship challenges are inevitable, no matter how much you truly love each other! Remember to share, accept, find fun activities to do together, and give each other space.
SL: What are some ways to take a break from your partner amid quarantine if you’re cohabitating?
TO: You can walk outside separately. You can read a book in your room or on a couch. You can listen to a podcast, watch a movie, exercise, do an online course, or FaceTime with your friend—separately. It’s okay to take a break from each other, even if you’re living [in a small space].
Just last week, there were three major astrological events, including the solar eclipse, new moon in Cancer and summer solstice. We have to ask, are you guys okay!?
This Cancer new moon is quite extraordinary this year, as it’s the first in a duo of consecutive Cancer new moons. Heightened emotions may surface, riding the coattails of the potent solar eclipse and could continue with the next new moon in Cancer on July 20. It’s a fantastic time for healing, purging and releasing as we take a look at where we need true support in our lives.
Below, you’ll find four incredible practices that will help you ground your energy, release negative emotions or patterns and grow into the awe-inspiring being of light that you are this season!
Take a Crystal Healing Bath
If you’ve never taken a crystal healing bath, it’s time you get on that. Water, itself, is already an incredible healing force, but adding crystals to the mix amplifies the energy tenfold. Using simple epsom salt combined with an amethyst, rose quartz and clear quartz stone is our personal favorite way to clear out old stagnant energy that no longer serves. You can also add essential oils like lavender and frankincense for an extra boost of relaxation. You may not feel any different during the actual bath, but you’ll wake up the next morning feeling amazingly refreshed. You can find out more on ritual baths (including what stones shouldn’t be used in the tub) HERE.
Practice ‘I Am’ Affirmations
Never underestimate the effect of a simple ‘I am’ affirmation. By putting these short words in front of any dynamic or positive adjective, you’re reminding yourself of your own truth and divinity. They essentially train your subconscious to release blocks and negativity that may be holding you back from manifesting your dreams. Luckily, YouTube is a beautiful place filled with many meditations and affirmations for different conditions you’d like in your life including success, love, abundance—you name it.
Pay Attention to Emotional Triggers
The nature of Cancer is highly emotional and sensitive. That energy can also be amplified at the time of a new moon. Old emotional wounds may surface during this time that, let’s be honest, you hadn’t planned on revisiting. Instead of trying to bury pain or unpleasant emotions, let them rise to the surface for healing and clearing. Meditate on uplifting mantras to rebuild your confident spirit. Everything we experience is for our personal growth, and there’s no greater form of expansion than deep, soulful rejuvenation.
Make Moon Water
Yes, moon water is totally a thing and it’s incredibly magical✨🌝. There’s no better way to cleanse and soothe your inner turbulence than by sipping on transformation-infused H20. The moon greatly influences the tides of the ocean, so why wouldn’t it have an effect on our physical bodies? You can make a batch by simply putting out a jar of water under a full moon to charge it with its energy and taking a nice, big chug of it the next morning. Take this practice further by adding a specific intention or something you would like to manifest to it before setting it out.
TikTok is easily the only platform where you can have zero followers, post once and still get massive amounts of attention.
This makes it a treasure trove of possibilities when it comes to growing your business or building your personal brand.
Scroll below for the best tips on how to harness this mighty app’s power, as told by marketing platform Later’s resident TikTok expert Taylor Loren.
1. Leverage Their User Base
TikTok now has over 800 million active users. That’s right on par with Instagram’s active user base which is just under 1 billion. It’s important to note that TikTok prioritizes entertainment and authenticity over commerce—a stark distinction from Instagram. Users are looking for creators who are passionate, inspired and funny. Participating in things like TikTok challengers are fun yet incredibly strategic ways to creatively increase brand awareness. It’ll help boost your account, get more users to check out your content and increase your potential of landing on many users’ “For You” pages.
2. Know What Sets the App Apart
Another major distinction between TikTok and Instagram is that it’s more about the content of the video rather than how pretty it looks. When users first open the app, they’re immediately taken to their “For You” page, an area with content specifically tailored to their interests based on previously watched and liked videos. Most of the content featured here is actually from people they don’t already follow, making it a valuable tool when it comes to building brand awareness. It’s super critical to make this distinction as it determines what kind of content you should focus on pushing out. There’s less pressure in terms of aesthetic, but unfiltered videos should be kept short, sweet and have a clever angle.
3. Create Fun, Short and Eye-Catching Content
TikTok is overflowing with effects and editing features that are incredibly easy to use. Never underestimate the value of eye-catching text as it helps users understand what you’re doing, who you are and why they shouldn’t scroll past your video. Another essential tip is avoiding the right side and bottom of the screen when adding text since they’re covered by the share icon and caption. These may seem like simple things, but those are sometimes the most overlooked. Initiating TikTok duets are also a great way to engage with other popular accounts and the perfect way to step out of your comfort zone.
4. Switch to a FREE TikTok Pro Account
If you haven’t already, definitely consider upgrading to a TikTok Pro account. This will give you access to analytics tools that’ll help you gain a better understanding of how your content performs. Use these tools to assess what content you should focus on, find your audience and ask yourself what trends are relatable to your brand. And as we noted, it’s completely free!
5. Know How the Algorithm Works
Trust us when we tell you the discover page is your new BFF. It’s majorly helpful in uncovering the latest trends and hashtagsthat are used for optimal audience-targeting, aka getting on more users’ “For You” pages. Because your main goal is to be featured on as many as possible, it’s important to contribute the kind of content that other users are interacting with most.
Hone in on your niche from there and you’ll eventually find an audience that likes and shares the same types of videos as you. Using specific trending sounds, songs, effects or combos of these also aid you in gaining TikTok success. The platform truly rewards users who are making the most of their features and actively engaging on the platform, so it’s also an excellent idea to post frequently.
Many stores and businesses around the world have been deeply affected by the current pandemic. Some of them will make it while others simply can’t survive the devastation.
With a heavy heart, we’ve rounded up a few treasured gems we’re truly sorry to see go. Grab your tissues and keep scrolling.
Pier 1 Imports
We’ve always admired Pier 1 for their charming seasonal decor and decorative centerpieces, so we were more than saddened to hear that they’ll be permanently closing their doors. The silver lining, however, is majorly inexpensive furniture deals. They’re currently accepting online orders and will begin blowout sales once stores can reopen for business. Now’s the time to pounce on that nightstand or coffee table you’ve always needed but haven’t found the extra cash to snag yet.
‘Tis a dark day when you find out your all-time fave buffet is a goner. We would like to take a moment to properly mourn endless salad, soup, crispy bread sticks and, most importantly, mouth-watering pizza bread. It was fun while it lasted 😩.
As you probably already know, Victoria’s Secret has low-key been on the decline for a while now. The lingerie retailer recently announced that they’d be closing 250 of its U.S. and Canadian stores over the next several months to help strengthen their business. Luckily, you still have the option to buy online, but we’ll definitely miss their adorable giant pink dog in-store displays 🐶😔.
Another deep sigh for beloved department store J.C.Penney who’ll be axing 242 locations as part of the company’s bankruptcy. Although they won’t be completely liquidating their assets like Pier 1, we’re not sure what this means for the future of the company. Department stores have taken the biggest hit amidst the panic of coronavirus, but we’re hopeful that Penney’s will be able to rally and push through. Where else will we able to find affordable bedding, furniture and Sephora items all in one place!?
While J.Crew didn’t necessarily fit our SoCal style, we’re still bummed to hear the apparel provider filed for bankruptcy. It’s been a solid mainstay for as long as we can recall, and we really do appreciate the remarkably soft, rich and comfortable fabric of their pajamas, loungewear and sweaters. We’ll remain hopeful for an amazing summer sale to come through.
There’s no shortage of information swirling around about what you should do to protect your health during the pandemic.
However, we’re here to share that there are simple and delicious food items you can incorporate into your daily diet that’ll boost immunity without having to go to extreme lengths.
Read on for expert wellness advice from Kroma Superfoods founder Lisa Odenweller, Hello Me founder Julie McClure and beauty supplement brand Hush & Hush co-founder Janna Roberts.
Vitamins D, C and A
To put it simply, vitamin D, C or A deficiencies equal higher risk of illness. Getting a sufficient amount of vitamin D is necessary for the development of bones and the regulation of calcium in your body. Vitamins D and C also improves resistance against certain diseases. Vitamin A also supports healthy immunity and lowers risks of certain cancers.
Matcha Green Tea
Extremely high in antioxidants, matcha green tea is the superfood to have on hand. Antioxidants are a powerful way to reduce cell damage and lower the risk of chronic diseases. In addition to this ultra superpower, it promotes heart health, boosts brain function, protects the liver and is beyond easy to throw into a shake, latte or even dessert.
This root has a delicious nutty aroma and is high in vitamin C, copper and iron. This helps keep your metabolism on track, boosts your energy and fights free radical damage. All this in one little powder? Sign us up.
There are a ton of different brands of mushroom extract to try so its best to find one that’s right for you. Our personal favorite is Om Organic Mushroom Powder. Reishi mushrooms reduce blood pressure, elevate the immune system and are great for the skin.
Turmeric is known to have powerful anti-inflammatory properties and increases your body’s antioxidant capacity. This is crucial as it blocks free radicals directly, then stimulates your body’s own antioxidant defenses. A serious one-two punch.
Creating and manifesting your ideal career takes practice, perseverance and, most importantly, dedication.
Many of us feel restless and want to take concrete steps toward our dreams, but the current health situation requires us to have much more patience than usual. Luckily, in the meantime, The XX Project’s Thriving During Crisis series has been helping us cope by providing weekly webinars that are both engaging and valuable.
This week’s speaker, Zoe Fairbourn, head of partnerships for Hello Sunshine (founded by Reese Witherspoon), spoke about what you can do to create your ideal position and future, even in uncertain times. Scroll below for her tips.
Look For a Niche
One of the most important things you can do for your professional growth is ask where you can truly make an impact. Finding the right position for you can be tough, but start by asking yourself what strong qualities you posses and how you can make a difference with them. Once you narrow that down, it will guide you in calibrating to the right field and niche for those skills.
Ask For What You Want
This piece of advice applies if you’re currently looking for work or unhappy in your current job and seeking a greater challenge. Asking for what you want seems like such a simple task, but many people forget that it’s most often what will illuminate the path forward for you. Reaching out to your network, cold emailing or asking for advice on LinkedIn can get you much further than you ever imagined.
Know What You Don’t Want
The key to discovering your dream career comes from knowing what you don’t want to manifest most of all. It may seem counterproductive, but this actually opens the door to more inspiration on what you are looking to build. What don’t you like about your current team, boss or position? Knowing your own personal dealbreakers can cause major light bulb moments on where you’re looking to put your energy, passion and efforts.
Find an Industry, Role or Company You’re Passionate About
If you’ve been laid off or are using this time to contemplate a completely new direction in your career, start by writing down your personal passions. This is a perfect jumping-off point to then research industries, roles or companies you’d love to be a part of, using your skillset to pursue a new avenue.
You Can Learn Something From Everyone on the Job
Challenging coworkers and bosses can test your patience like no other, but remember that there’s something to be learned from everyone on the job. Your most valuable position isn’t always your dream one, but the one with more difficult energy surrounding it. Learning to deal with unpleasant people and situations is an important lesson to overcome before stepping into your dream career. Keep the perspective by remembering that you’re only growing better, stronger and sharper from these experiences.
Before coronavirus came into play and turned our lives upside down, I was living a happy existence.
I’ve been dating my boyfriend, Mason, for almost a year, so it’s safe to say I know him pretty well. While we don’t share an apartment, we do spend at least five nights a week together at one of our places, cooking, drinking red wine, hanging out with our friends and of course, having the occasional fight.
Enter: coronavirus. Initially, I completely freaked out, asking Mason to stay at my apartment for fear I’d be stuck in L.A. all by myself. Once news of an official lockdown came into play, we talked it over and decided to quarantine together at his apartment in Newport Beach.
Turns out it was the best decision we could’ve made. There’s just no way either one of us would be able to handle a “long-distance” relationship. I’m so grateful to be quarantined with Mason. He’s willing to be lazy with me and lay in bed all day, but he also has the power to get my butt moving and work out. We’ve found the perfect balance for our little quarantine life, and I love it.
This whole experience has given me a preview of what life would look like living together full-time. Every day, he asks if I’m sick of him yet, and I answer with a resounding no. I think that’s a sign you’ve found your forever person… when you don’t mind being around them all the time (like, literally all the time).
But aside from knowing for sure that Mason is the love of my life, I’ve gotten to look at our existence together from the view of a microscope. Here are four things I’ve learned about my relationship from quarantining with my boyfriend.
I Miss Him in Those Few Hours ‘Apart’ While Working
Even though we’re together every waking second, I find myself missing Mason when we spend any time apart. Obviously in quarantine we don’t really get to be alone. So, when we’re working, we give each other space, which is sort of like our time apart.
Speaking of work, he takes his very seriously. Mason is typically super laidback, if not on the more quiet side (we’re very similar in that way). However, during quarantine, I’ve learned that he’s an extremely loud talker when it comes to work. On every single Zoom call he’s taken, I’m convinced the walls are shaking because of the sound waves he makes. Since he’s rather noisy on his Zoom calls, I’ve been able to hear every word he says on them. He works in Facebook advertising, and the conversations I’ve heard him have with his coworkers sound like complete gibberish to me, leading me to believe he’s the smartest man I’ve ever met.
I Pick Up on His Moods Immediately
Everyone has different ways of revealing their vibe is off, so whether your significant other didn’t say good morning or make your A.M. coffee, there are clear indications of their mood change, no matter how subtle they may be. I’m realizing how easy it is to learn when he’s excited, happy, sad, mad and everything in between.
You also learn to navigate through behaviors that are just them versus actions that are personal to you. Before quarantine, there were times I’d try to have conversations with Mason, and I was under the impression he was ignoring me because he wasn’t interested in what I had to say. Now, however, I’m realizing it’s because he can’t multitask. If he’s driving, playing around on his phone, looking at the computer, watching TV—I won’t get a response out of him.
I’ve also learned he gets cranky if he doesn’t work out. I sort of already knew this about him, but not to the full extent. He usually goes to a boxing gym a few days a week, but since those are now closed, he’s been way crankier than usual. He’s been relying on weights and my Peloton (which we brought to Orange County from L.A.), and it’s definitely cooled him down.
ILove Doing Nothing With Him
Sometimes, all I want to do is lay in bed all day, watch movies and eat junk food. And you know what’s better than doing that? Doing it with the person you love. Even in complete silence, Mason and I are able to enjoy each other’s company, and it doesn’t get old even doing it together all this consecutive time.
I Love Doing Everything With Him
Even amid quarantine, we still find ways to be adventurous and try new things. Whether we eat a new dish, watch a scary movie or something else, I’m happy as long as I have him by my side. Even though we’re obviously limited with resources, there are still many firsts to be experienced and we’re savoring every minute together.
In fact, spending so much time together has made his quirks fall to the wayside. He sets no less than 50 alarms in 15-minute increments. I only noticed this during quarantine. I mean, it is a little odd, but I’ve learned how to laugh it off—kind of like how he gets dressed up for work, like super serious, amid quarantine. He wears jeans sometimes! Meanwhile, I’m perfectly cozy in my sweats, and don’t understand going all out every single day from home when you can spend more time sleeping. But I guess I admire he’s drive to look his best at all times. Mason, if you’re reading this, I love you, and I know I’m way weirder than you.
If you’ve been feeling restless or agitated during quarantine, now is the ideal time to redirect your energy toward aspirations and goals for the rest of the year.
You can create a brand new reality for yourself just through the power of position intention, energy clearing and tapping into the flow of abundance already present in your experience. Scroll through for five simple things you can do in the comfort of your own home to manifest your new life.
Use the Law of Attraction
There’s an extensive amount of information out there on the law of attraction. With everything from The Secret to Notes from the Universe, it may seem overwhelming to try and harness this powerful yet simple principle. We’re here to tell you it doesn’t have to be in the slightest. Although there are many different teachers on the subject, the basic steps are always the same. You can manifest anything you want into your reality by shifting your thoughts and vibration into a positive one. A great place to start your journey is by watching manifestation success coach Amy Westmoreland’s YouTube channel.
Incorporate Simple Feng shui Into Your Space
The Feng shui Collective (mother and daughter Feng shui experts with 30 years of experience) share many adjustments you can make to your room for allowing the right kind of energy into a space. Even something as simple as covering your large mirror at night can help you get better sleep and feel more uplifted in the morning. Follow them for first-rate tips and valuable info.
Make a Gratitude List
Remind yourself of everything currently going well in your life. Making a list of people, places and things you’re immensely grateful for during this time will help you keep perspective. Although the situation is far from ideal, it’s important not to overlook the fact that you’re healthy, safe and have support from friends and family. We know it isn’t easy to do this, especially if you’ve lost a job, but do your best. You’d be surprised how much better you feel afterwards.
Never underestimate the power of visualization. Visualizing is a huge part of the manifestation process. Even if you’re feeling a little hopeless or stuck at the moment, envision exactly what you want your life to look like for 5 minutes every day. Holding this mental image is going to bring inspiration to take right course of action and find creative solutions to your current challenges.
Create a Vision Board
Make use of your current down time by creating a vision board. Many have reported it as a major success tool when looking to build a new aspect of their life. Acquire images from magazines, the internet or even Instagram that just speak to you on a soul level. Whether you’re discovering your life’s passion, or just planning how to get out of debt, it’s an incredible road map that will illuminate the path forward.
We’ve discussed the of impact of coronavirus on mental, spiritual and physical health, but what should you do if your work is also in jeopardy or you’ve already lost your job?
Getting laid-off can be a traumatizing experience on its own, but now it’s even more challenging with the added layer of market uncertainty that comes with a pandemic. Luckily, the Los Angeles career experts at Eleven Recruiting held a webinar last week offering advice to those whose careers have been halted by coronavirus.
Scroll below for their top five tips to turning your job casualty into your next major career move.
1. Update Your Resume and LinkedIn Profile
Although this may seem like basic, even elementary advice at this point, it’s still extremely important. Keeping your resume up-to-date and revamping your LinkedIn may just be what lands you the job. If you have certain special skills you’d like to highlight on your profile, see if a few friends are willing to endorse you for them. It can make a world of a difference.
2. Add Highlights to Your Resume
We know by now that hiring managers are looking at thousands of resumes per day, each for only about 10 seconds. Adding a “Highlights” section is a considerable way to set yourself apart from the crowd. This can include everything from your strongest skills (campaign building, influencer marketing, etc.) to a summarized version of any meaningful and relevant career accomplishments.
3. Find Out What Skills Are in Demand
Because we now have more downtime than ever before, make use of it by researching what skills and career experience are in high-demand right now. Making yourself more marketable is the key to landing an interview for any position. A few skills Eleven Recruiting mentioned as a hot commodity are writing, editing, graphic design and web development.
4. Utilize LinkedIn’s Certification Program
In case you didn’t know, LinkedIn also offers one-month freetrial access to their certification and higher education programs. Now’s an excellent time to take advantage of these opportunities to further your training in areas including management and software development. There’s also the option to learn Photoshop, WordPress and more.
5. Create an Organized Spreadsheet With Leads and Application Statuses
This may not seem like the most important aspect to focus on, but staying organized and proactive during the job search is absolutely crucial. How many times have you lost track of the applications you’ve sent out or if you’ve already applied to a position? Keeping a spreadsheet will help keep you on track, while feeling accomplished for all the energy you’ve invested in your overall career advancement.
Remember when swiping to find your soulmate was a foreign concept? Welp! That’s way old news.
Enter: dating in the era of social distancing. As the coronavirus has everyone quarantined, we’re becoming much more resourceful with how we “get acquainted” with people. It’s like we’re all adults living (hopefully only temporarily) as teens, refusing to communicate by any means other than video chat—dating included.
I had my debut bout with the 2020 era of digital dating on the first official weeknight of isolation. A happily married friend of mine has a flowing pool of singles she knows through a variety of avenues. She’s set me up on dates with her friends before—ones in which she eyed as potential matches. This time, however, she said from the get-go this wasn’t someone she necessarily saw me running off into the sunset with. More time on her hands means more energy to arrange things like this apparently, and she thought it would be fun to set some of her friends up on very random FaceTime dates.
After a little bit of thought, I agreed to it. Honestly, what do I have to lose? There aren’t really any ways to meet new people at this very moment, and, for lack of a better word: YOLO. Next thing I knew, my friend sent me *Evan’s phone number, along with a reminder to “dress accordingly” and “have fun with it!” I chuckled. Thanks, coach!
Evan’s number had a 503 area code, which was perfect because I went to school at the University of Oregon, so if all else failed, I could ask about… living in Oregon? Boring. But anyway, I made it through my typical WFH office day, but had angst all throughout. I texted a couple girlfriends about my jitters, while nervously getting ready (trying to look nice, but not too nice). Time was ticking. Cue the stress.
The scariest part of this experience is those three insanely long seconds where it says “Connecting…”—you have so many thoughts running through your head. What will he look like? How should I hold the phone? Should my hair be in front of my ears or behind? Can he see my stray greys through the screen? It’s also important to note that I despise video chats and avoid them at all costs. With the exception of an occasional mandatory work Zoom, you’ll rarely spot me sitting in on these now-common gatherings.
At long last, our faces both made their way to the screen. I was greeted with a jolly, “Hi!” in that “I-know-this-is-awkward-but-here-we-are” tone. While yes, indeed awkward, Evan seemed gentlemanly and could hold a conversation. We shared some laughs, but as FaceTime would have it, sometimes responses and reactions are delayed or have weird echoes. Additional awkwardness.
There’s really only so much you can do on these first-time FaceTime dates. Especially sober. And you really only get a pixelated, headshot-version of the person you’re talking to. Our convo didn’t hit any lulls, but after a while, we both wanted to get to the rest of our evenings. Before I knew it, an hour had gone by. I was shocked! We ended with a lighthearted mutual agreement to hop in the kitchen and whip up a home-cooked meal—one we each sent to each other via text when finished.
I was so relieved when the call was over. Not because of anything he did, but because these things are scary and uncomfortable. Body language is 55% of communication, so there was a lot left undetermined without it. That said, the discomfort was just what I needed. Sometimes (a lot of the time), my nerves get the best of me and I play things too safe.
In case you’re wondering, we agreed we’d meet for a drink in person once we’re set free from quarantine. To be honest, as my friend predicted, I don’t think Evan and I will be a romantic match—but, meeting someone for drinks who I don’t have a lot in common with will be that much-needed step out of my comfort zone!
Although there’s no lack of health and wellness information going around right now, it can still be difficult to discern what’s right for you, specifically.
To help navigate this particular problem, clean beauty brand MARA, luxury beauty supplement brand Hush & Hush and The Jane Club and The XX Project recently hosted enlightening webinars on how we should nourish our minds and bodies during self-isolation.
Hush & Hush’s Wellness Wednesday discussion featured adept inner health education from founders Dr. Marc Ronert and Janna Ronert, while MARA Beauty’s roundtable-style Positive Perception panel highlighted the importance of listening to your own body’s needs. Meanwhile, The Jane Club and The XX Project hosted a calm-inducing Interactive Intuition workshop, led by Mindset Mastery Coach, Stephanie Kwong, and Personal Development Coach, Laura Greenberg.
Find the best wellness practices to incorporate into your routine from each seminar below!
Incorporate Exercise Into Your Daily Schedule
This seems like such a simple task, but many people get so caught up in fear that they forget how vital it is to go out and stretch their legs. Dr. Ronert suggests a 30-minute workout in the morning and another in the evening—whatever that may be for you.
Journal at Least Once a Day
During MARA’s roundtable, Natural beauty and skincare writer, Jessica DeFino, strongly recommended taking the time to journal every day. It’s imperative to prioritize our mental health during this time and remember that it’s absolutely okay not to feel okay all the time. Getting your thoughts out onto the page will help you process your emotions in a safe (social media-free) way.
Add More Supplements to Your Diet
If you didn’t already get the memo, vitamins are major key right now. Holistic chef and co-founder of How You Glow, Tara Sowlaty, shared with MARA audiences how important it is at this time to incorporate more vitamin D and C into our everyday diets. Because many are spending more time inside, that means far less sun exposure, which can cause lower back pain and fatigue. Regularly taking vitamin D should help counteract this, along with immunity-boosting vitamin C.
Avoid Meat If You Can
According to Dr. Ronert, meat increases inflammation in the body, which can compromise your immune system. Although we know it’s unrealistic to completely cut meat out of your diet, try eating extra fruits and vegetables or buying impossible meat instead. As tough as this situation is, it can be an amazing opportunity to clean up your diet and discover new, likable ingredients you otherwise wouldn’t touch.
Rethink Your Beauty Essentials
Now that health is a top priority, DeFino reminded us that it’s time to reconsider what are really our skincare essentials. Use this as motivation to check the ingredients in your face wash or foundation, as you might be surprised how many of them are not as organic as you’d like. Now’s a great time to trash those synthetic products and try a new holistic beauty line you think is right for you.
Set Limits For Yourself
We know this is a challenge when those Doritos are sitting five feet away from you all day long. However, periodically creating boundaries with your diet (especially alcohol consumption😅) and news intake will work wonders for you. Instead, stock up on protein-rich snacks that keep you fuller longer, and disconnect from electronics for a while.
Try Cupping at Home
Our favorite piece of guidance came from VIE Healing owner and Chinese medicine practitioner Mona Dan. For increased blood flow and a boost in immunity and chest health, try at-home cupping. VIE Healing offers a guide on this via their website and is also offering TeleMedicine sessions. They’re designed to help you build your own customized wellness kit at home that you’ll receive in the mail.
Practice Breathwork When You Experience Peak Anxiety
Our emotions are bound to get the best of us during these trying times, but when you feel your angst come to a head, Kwong suggests the 4-7-8 technique. Put your tongue behind your teeth in your upper mouth. breathe in for four seconds. hold it for seven seconds and breath out for eight seconds. Do this until your heartbeat slows and you feel more at ease.