Posts tagged minimalism

How to Meal Prep When You Don’t Want to Meal Prep

Hello friends,

how has March been treating you so far? I hope all is well!

I’m coming at you today with a topic (see above) that I had never given much thought when I was still living back in Switzerland. I basically didn’t know what it was.

Working in the US, where most people have al desko lunches every day and tackle rather long commutes day in day out forced me to rethink my food options Monday through Friday. After all there are some quite relevant advantages that come along with planning and preparing your meals ahead. Let’s hear some right now in case you need convincing. I’m sure there are more, those seem like the most obvious ones to me.

  • Time: You’ll save yourself some veeery valuable time in the morning (think about how much longer you can spend lying in bed. That’s a good one, right?)
  • Physical Health: You’ll know exactly what ingredients go into your meals. If you have any dietary restrictions this can be especially valuable.
  • Mental Health: We all know that being hangry is not a particularly nice state of mind. In order to keep yourself happy it’s always great to have prepped meals and snacks at hand.

#1 Make a plan

Who doesn’t love a good plan?

No?

Even if it includes food?

There are a million resources, meal plans, videos, posts out there but I’ll try and keep it fairly simple by just showing you how I do it and what my take on it is. If you’re into it, take a few minutes maybe on a Friday or Saturday or whenever you do your grocery shopping for the week ahead. Things to take into consideration:

  • How many meals do you need to prepare? How many times will you be out for dinner or lunch and therefore not need to prepare anything during the work week? I tend to not plan anything for the weekend as we have more time then and are out and about. Still, being more aware of what you’ll need will not only make your grocery shopping sessions be done way faster and efficiently (no more randomly picking up groceries as you go) it will also prevent you from having to throw away food that has gone to waste.
  • Have your containers ready: As you will be preparing meals or ingredients for the week ahead you’ll have to store them somewhere. Make sure to have enough glass jars (for breakfasts or salads) or glass containers at hand.
  • Set time aside to prep: Lots of people including myself will have a little cooking session on a Sunday night for an hour or two and get all the preparation done.

#2 Ideas for Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

The way I approach meal prep is to prepare ingredients separately rather than full meals. This holds true for lunch especially. For breakfast and for dinner I will mostly turn to a “complete” meal. What do I mean by that?

Breakfast

My go-to options are either overnight oats, chia pudding or a bircher. They won’t take much longer than a few minutes to put together. Stored in a glass jar your 5 breakfasts for the work week ahead are ready to go.

Breakfast Prep

  • Oats, chia pudding or bircher as your base
  • Toppings (fresh or dried fruit, nuts, seeds, almond butter)

Breakfast Inspo

Lunch

I’ve rediscovered my love for spinach salad. It’s become a staple item for my lunch salads. I am not a fan of salads that will make you go hungry an hour after eating them though. The key here is to bulk up your salad with as many delicious things as possible. I love to throw in some red quinoa, farro, barley, lentils, brown rice or chickpeas, avocados, olives, artichokes, hard-boiled eggs topped with some green onions, sunflower seeds, chive, roasted vegetables, hummus, falafel, tahini, cottage or feta cheese,… The list is endless, choose your salads and have your ingredients for the week ready so that you can just put them together the night before. Switch up the ingredients every week so the whole thing doesn’t get boring.

Lunch Prep

  • Red quinoa, farro, barley, lentils, brown rice, chickpeas
  • Hard-boil some eggs
  • Roast vegetables in the oven (parsnips, sweet potatoes, carrots, …)
  • Make your own hummus
  • Cut up vegetables to snack on during the week
  • Prep your toppings such as green onions, edamame, chicken, falafel, avocado, …

Dinner

We will think about 3-4 dinner meals that we fancy eating and will put them together on the evening itself. You have a selection of ingredients ready at hand to cook the meals you had planned so you’re good to go and will not run the risk of turning into a hangry person.

Snacks

Packing up fruit (banana, apples) and nuts, seeds and dried fruit in small glass jars is always great if you’re out and about and feeling peckish.

I’ll also prepare my own ginger-turmeric concoction, which I love. Here’s how I do it: Grate some fresh ginger, add a tablespoon of turmeric powder, pour over a bit of lemon juice and drizzle with honey. Store the mix in a glass jar in your fridge and take it out whenever you feel like a warming tea. Just add a few tablespoons (depending on how spicey you like things) of your mix into a cup and pour boiling water over it. Tadaa! Your delicious tea, loaded with antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties is ready to be consumed! Enjoy!

Do you prepare your meals ahead? If so what are your favorite dishes and where do you find inspiration? Let us know in the comments below.

Have a lovely day!

Photo credit: https://downshiftology.com

New Healthy Habits I’m Loving

Friends,

we are all about that healthy balanced lifestyle these days, aren’t we? I have to say that I’ve never enjoyed eating healthly and moving as much as I do now. It makes me feel good and more energized. So today’s post is going to be all about those small new things I’ve been implementing in my daily routine. Let me know what habits you are following that make you feel all good and healthy. Have a great day!

Boosting my Breakfast (BMB)

I found that having a nutritious breakfast really sets me up for the day feeling all energized. I love to add certain so called superfoods (Philipp always laughs at me when I say that, he obviously doesn’t believe in the power of superfoods, tsss) such as chia seeds, goji berries (all types of berries in general as they’re loaded with antioxidants) or nuts, seeds and cinnamon (also has anti-inflammatory properties) to my yoghurt or kefir. They’re all packed with valuable nutrients and will leave you feeling real goooood.

Drink Lemon Water

It’s such a cliché but drinking lots of water is JUST THE WAY TO GO PEEPS. And seriously I have been dehydrated most of my life looking back now (not in a life threatening way of course but still). It’s highly likely that you too don’t drink enough water. So. Long story short: Start your day right – create a routine and stick to it. I start my day with a glass of water and add some lemon. Not only does this add a much-needed burst of vitamin C into my day – perfect for boosting your immunity – it also helps to flush the digestive system and rehydrate the body. It’s alkalising once inside our body, which is great for balancing pH levels, and it’s also super refreshing.

lemon water

Adding Vitamins or Protein Powder to My Daily Routine

I’ve only recently been getting into vitamins and supplements more (because as far as I understand if you’re eating a balanced diet you don’t really need any supplements). Still, sometimes it’s hard to get enough from food alone. I’ve been adding protein powder to my yoghurt nut and berries concotions or have one or two vitamins I take. What do you think about the whole supplement craze?

Investing in Workout Gear That I actually Like to Wear

Does it sound weird putting that in a list about healthy habits? Well, I’m not saying you should regulary buy new workout gear (the contrary actually). What I’m saying is that treating yourself to some good quality workout gear will make you want to workout more (because you look good, makes sense, right?).

That’s logical, #amiright?

Minimizing Waste

It’s incredible how much foods ends up in the landfill just because people throw it away, we waste so much produce that it’s upsetting. We try and plan ahead every week how much of what types of produce, breads etc. we will actually need. There are weeks where we know we’ll be out a lot or not at home, so no need to buy as much as usually. So please try and consider buying what you need for the week ahead. Seems so logical but still is often forgotten. Also, try and buy at Farmer’s Markets (post about my favourite Farmer’s Market coming at you tomorrow, keep your eyes peeled) as you will usually need less packaging

When you take the time to cook, don’t just cook for one meal; cook for the future. Pesto, tomato sauces, curries and soups are great things to make in large batches and freeze in small portions. With pesto, a top tip is to freeze small blocks in ice cube trays so you always have the perfect amount to add quickly into meals.

My 5 Favourite YouTube Channels At The Moment

Ok, so I promised to be real around here.

And I am. If I have a guilty pleasure it has to be watching YouTube. Today’s is going to be about my top 5 favourite YouTube channels.

Yes, I know know. I watch YouTube for escapism reasons (all of my fellow media and communications friends will know what I mean). Anyways, in case you want to relax and just consume something entertaining (because the thought of actually actively doing something seems difficult or watching something too complicated and demanding). So, those are my 5 favorite YouTube channels, maybe there’s something in for you, too. (I just realized that selection might be a bit more feminine, sorry guys).

#1 The Anna Edit

Well Anna, if you’re ever reading this. I WANT TO BE YOUR FRIEND! While that might make you feel all cringy I think we’d really hit it off. Yes I do. For all of you who are interested in lifestyle, beauty, food and bits of fashion but all in a really cool and easy and not over the top kind of way, this is your channel. Also, can we take a moment to just listen to this beautiful English accent, so nice!

#2 Estée Lalonde

I’ve been following Estée’s channel for a few years now. She’s Canadian but moved to London for love and is now making videos about all things London lifestyle, beauty, interiors, style in general, books and the list goes on. She has also made a few videos on the topics of feminism and the stylishness and the house Estée lives in are JUST ON ANOTHER LEVEL. So beautiful.

#3 Pick up Limes

I’ve discovered Saida’s channel only a few months ago but really appreciate this nutritionist’s videos on minimalism, vegan recipes and just life tips and hacks in general. You really see the effort she puts in every video and her voice has just something so soothing to it. Don’t you think?

#4 Sarah’s Day

This Australian girl is just so nice. Her accent is, too. She also seems to be super easy going and approachable. Besides showing us the great life of living in Sydney she is all about that healthy fitness and food lifestyle. Check her out if you’re into that!

#5 SORTEDfood 

It’s all about the food. Need I say more? Cool (is it ok to still use cool?) and inspiring channel, check it out yo.

And last but not least, my all time favorite not needing to be in a top 5 because it is just the best…is…..you might have guessed it: Yoga with Adriene!

Let me know what your favorite channels are if you have any!

Cheers!

Why I’m Going to Buy a Harvard Sweater (Even Though I Said I Never Would)

Kids! We’re leaving town. We’re leaving Cambridge.

 

So very sad. I’m surprised at how nostalgic I’m feeling when writing down those words. Leaving this special place after having lived here for one year seems so difficult all of a sudden. It’s just SUCH a nice place to live in, especially in summer. I have to say, Boston and Cambridge are total beauties in the summer time (makes you almost forget how TERRIBLE winter is here). Maybe that’s a trick this city plays on you. Half of the year it’s the most beautiful place ever and you’re like, ‘cool place’, other half of the year….NOT SO MUCH.

Anyways. Why do I like it here so much you ask?

Cambridge has the feeling and vibe of a small town to it (a little more than 100’000 inhabitants, remember? Not that much after all), the houses are BEAUTIFUL, there’s tree-lined little cute streets everywhere. Still there are tons of things to do everyday (events, concerts, theatre plays, the list goes on), there are plenty of cool (is it still ok to use ‘cool’?) bars, cafés, amazing restaurants and little local shops all around the corner.

The mix of people is diverse and fascinating, there are obviously lots of proud Harvard students around, wearing all of the branded gear and clothes making it clear to everyone on the streets passing them WHO is going to Harvard. They are. You are NOT. Unless you’re a cute tourist buying all the Harvard shirts and sweaters from the Harvard store to pass as a student. I’m sorry to break it to you. People will notice YOU’RE NOT AN ORIGINAL. Still, I will buy a Harvard sweater as an emotional souvenir. And still, it’s nice to have so many young people around. There are also lots of families and people that have been living here for a long time. Aw, I’m going to miss you Cambridge, you beautiful town.

I sound very dramatic I realize now that I’ve read through that last paragraph. Because…let’s all not forget that we’re moving to the city…that is 10 minutes away by subway.

Anyways, I’m in a dramatic mood today.

Still, I’m going to miss the first place I ever called a home in the United States, I’ll never forget. And this eclectic and international mix of people. Ok, going to leave you now. It’s getting worse and worse.

Have a great day!

#ChallengeMeJune Week 2: Meditating Every Day

Hello friends,

another week of June has gone by, another little completed challenge in the books. After waking up at 6 am during the first week of June (see post here) I tried to meditate every day during the second week of the month.

To begin with I always thought meditating was a bit weird (for lack of a more elegant description) as I didn’t really understand how it worked. After reading up on the topic a little I am still by NO MEANS a specialist or anything but I start to see why people like to do it. Bottom line is, it has a ton of good effects (feeling happy and focused, decreasing your blood pressure or getting to know your mind to name a few. I am aware that the last one seems strange but WOW you’ll learn so much about how your mind and brain work). If you’re into finding out more for doing it yourself, keep reading this introductory ‘How to meditate for beginners’.

How to get started

What to bring: I’d recommend you meditate at home first, as you still need to get used to it. Obviously you can do it anywhere you can sit down on a chair or on the floor, with your hands rested on your knees, but I liked to do it at home, wearing cozy clothes.

When to do it: I tried to always sit down around the same time every day, which was in the morning after waking up, obviously what fits your schedule best, will be the best option. However, I’d recommend to keep it consistent so you really have the feeling of having formed a new habit.

What to do: Well here’s where things get interesting, I tried to compile different methods of meditation in own week, you’ll find the plan below in case you want to replicate it. If you’re totally into day 1’s program, perfect, let’s keep that up. I like to vary the exercises from day to day but that is obviously optional. So let’s get stared forreal now.

Day 1 – Breathing

Let’s start with something easy, shall we? I’m not gonna lie, it was weird when I did it for the first time….BUT it will get better, trust me.

What to do: To get used to the experience of being in the present moment, begin by sitting for five minutes, close your eyes. Take deep breaths, rather than short, shallow breaths from your chest. Continue until you feel calm. Let your thoughts come and go, without trying to hold on to them or follow after them.

What I thought afterwards: Wow, that was quick, I could have keep going on for longer. So for the next day I told myself to put the timer to 8min (adventurous, right?).

Day 2 – Mantra Meditation

What to do: Choose a calming word or phrase. Repeat it over and over to yourself silently to prevent distracting thoughts from entering.

What I thought afterwards: 8min went super fast like on the day before, it’s crazy how time flies once you close your eyes.

Day 3 – Mindful Meditation

­ What to do: Take a break and make yourself acutely aware of your surroundings. Take deep breaths and feel your lungs swell. Allow yourself to think about your feelings, but do so without  judgment.

What I thought afterwards: Loved that one too, it hit me how much more you listen to your surrounding’s noises if you’re eyes are closed.

Day 4 – Safe Space Visualization

What to do: Think of a place that makes you feel safe. It can either be a place you’ve visited before, a place you’ve seen but never been to, or a place that exists only in your imagination.

Close your eyes, and start taking deeper and deeper breaths. Picture yourself in that safe space, look around you, and visualize your surroundings. How the sky looks like, how the air smells or what you feel. Build every detail in your mind. Walk around your safe space until you have explored as much of it as you want to. Continue walking until you find your perfect place—the place that makes you feel most at peace. Visualize yourself sitting here, in this place, and begin to breathe. When you’re ready to leave your safe space, slowly open your eyes and come back into the room. Hold onto those feelings of peace and safety, and know that you can revisit them whenever you need to.

What I thought afterwards: I found that one to be rather hard as it requests you to think a lot about a certain space. I guess I’ll have to do it more often in order to get better at it.

Day 5 – Concentrate On a Simple Visual Object

What to do: In a similar way to using a mantra, you can use a simple visual object to fill your mind and allow you to reach a level of deeper consciousness. This is a form of open-eye meditation, which many people find easier when they have something to focus their gaze on.

  • The visual object can be anything you wish (candles, flowers, pictures etc.)
  • Place the object at eye level, look at it and nothing else, until your peripheral vision starts to dim and the object consumes your vision.

What I thought afterwards: I found it hard in the first place to find something to look at that wouldn’t distract me too much. In the end I chose to go for a plant, which worked out fine. Still I prefer the closed-eye version to this open-eye one.

Day 6 – Do a Body Scan

What to do: Doing a body scan involves focusing on each individual body part in turn and consciously relaxing it. It is a simple meditation technique which allows you to relax the mind as you relax the body.

  • Close your eyes and pick a starting point on your body, usually the toes. Concentrate on whatever sensations you can feel in your toes, and make a conscious effort to relax any muscles. Once the toes are fully relaxed, move on to your feet and repeat the relaxation process. Continue along your body, moving upwards to the top of your head. Take as long as you want.
  • Once you have completed the relaxation of each individual body part, focus on your body as a whole and enjoy the sensation of calmness and looseness you have achieved. Focus on your breathing for several minutes before coming out of your meditation practice.

What I thought afterwards: Good one! Especially when you’re lying down on the floor.

Day 7 – Breathing

I went back to the first exercise of the week, which was the breathing one, which I really enjoyed. I just did it for 15 mins this time and it was great.

Do let me know if you give it a try yourself, have a great week everyone! 

My Summer Capsule Wardrobe And How To Make Your Own

Guys,

remember how I had talked about kind of having a capsule wardrobe in this post a few months ago?

Well, I wanted to give it a go again (forreal this time) and do my first ever summer capsule wardrobe. Before I jump in, here’s a refresher on capsule wardrobes, in case you want to read about it in more detail again. Without further ado, here comes how I did it and how you could attempt to do your own little wardrobe summer experiment!

Step 1 – Make a huge pile

What’s the classic first move of all decluttering action? Yes, taking out everything and spreading it out on the floor. Move warm sweaters and the like out of the way on a store away pile as well as trousers, “thick” jeans and flannel shirts. It will help you figure out what has to be stored away for fall and what to keep and use for your wardrobe in summer.

Step 2 – Separate tops from bottoms from shoes

It’s interesting to separate your clothes along those three categories as you will very quickly see where your priorities lie. My obsession definitely seems to be tops, while I have less bottoms and even less shoes. What about you? Which category of clothes is your favorite one?

Step 3 – Go through each category and sort out what you don’t want to keep

What helps is seeing what type of colors, patterns or materials you have lying around in your bottoms or shoes pile if you’re going through your tops pile for example. While you don’t really know what you have in your crammed closet it helps seeing it all in one pile. Seeing all my stuff on a pile made me realize that my color scheme is rather neutral, monochrome, with the odd pattern and color dash. It also made me realize which brands I tend to always turn to (in my case Cos, And other stories, Uniqlo, Zara and H&M).

Step 4 – Count your tops, bottoms and shoes

I ended up with a total of 36 pieces in my summer wardrobe including tops, jackets, bottoms, dresses, and shoes (meaning I’d get to have one extra piece, which will most probably be comfortable Birkenstock sandals, which I’m currently missing in my selection). Disclaimer: As we’ve moved here I obviously couldn’t bring all of my stuff, back home I’d have to get rid of way more stuff.

Step 5 – Plan on what you need to buy/get rid of

If you’ve got your total down you’ll most likely realize that you don’t need any new things. But if you feel like you want to replace a top/dress or shoe go for it. As mentioned below I’ll most likely invest in one new pair of comfortable every day sandals.

The Overview

Tops

18 t-shirts and shirts: As mentioned above, I seem to be a total t-shirts and shirts kind of girl. They’re so easy to wear, you can dress them up or down and they’re just comfortable. Most of my shirts are from Uniqlo as I really think the quality is very good for the price you pay. Most of those shirts are already a few years old and they are still in pretty good shape. Highly recommend! Most of my t-shirts are from Cos and H&M. Simple but good. 

2 special shirts: For lack of a better description. Those are a black top and a white silk top with a cutout in the back. Also, yes, I don’t currently own an iron. No judging here. Thanks.

2 sweaters: For the odd more fresh day in summer I have a white ripped cotton and slightly cropped sweater from Cos as well as a light grey cashmere sweater by Zara.

2 jackets: A white blazerish jacket and a more funky bomber to throw on a t-shirt or a shirt.

Bottoms

6 trousers and shorts: A mix of my trusted Wedgie Fit Jeans, a black linen trousers by And other stories, dark navy jogger pants, shorts in navy and print and a midi skirt.

3 dresses: I’ve got a casual stripy cotton dress, back home a green coppery Cos dress (see featured photo of this post) as well as a denim shirt dress by Uniqlo are waiting for me.

Shoes

3 Sneakers, silver sandals and black loafers: That’s it. I’m shocked myself to write that. But hey, it’s really not a huge deal. In fact it’s really nice having a manageable selection (#firstworldproblems).

Do let me know if you give the summer capsule wardrobe experiment a try, ok?

Have a lovely day!

My Two NYC Discoveries: The 9/11 Memorial and Calatrava’s Oculus Station

Hi everyone,

I don’t want to bore you with (too many) words today, which is why I’m leaving you with photos of the two buildings/places that by far blew me away the most when I visited New York last time.

It’s the incredibly moving and beautiful 9/11 Memorial and the incredibly modern and minimalist Oculus station by Calatrava, which MUST be the coolest station I have EVER seen (I also would totally not mind if I had to commute there everyday, it’s really such a unique building. Also, I would totally get it why a film director would want to shoot his next sci fi movie here. In conclusion: It’s quite a unique train station.

Have you seen both of this places? If not, I HIGHLY (I’m into CAPS this morning it seems. Sorry. But it’s important) recommend you visit them next time you’re in NYC.

Have a great Thursday, the weekend is near! Yay!

The 9/11 Memorial

The Oculus Station

Motivational Monday: Simple Ways To Motivate Yourself

It’s Monday.

Need I say more? Sometimes, especially after an amazing weekend it’s not always easy to get back to daily life mode (even though I have to say, since I am not working I haven’t been feeling that Monday feeling for a looong time, which is nice). Nevertheless, I also sometimes find it hard to motivate myself.

Hopefully some of the tips will help you out whenever you don’t feel super motivated.

Have a great week everyone!

  1. Kickstart Your Day – Plan out your day the day before. I like to look at my agenda in the evening and catch up on what lies ahead the next day so I can mentally prepare for it. Getting an organized start into your day will make you feel accomplished and motivated to take on the day.
  2. Celebrate the little wins – Say you’ve set yourself the goal to work out x amount of times this week or to finish a part of a project by a certain date. If you’ve managed to do it, you should be proud and happy about yourself and celebrate. Even if it seems like something little and unnecessary. Still, reward yourself (could be anything really from ordering that beauty product you’ve been eyeing for a while, a night out at your favorite restaurant etc., whatever floats your boat). I personally also do it and it keeps my motivation going and just makes you feel good about yourself. Don’t you want that? Yeeeees, you do.
  3. Surround yourself with inspirational people – One of the things that motivates me the most is talking to interesting people. They usually talk about interesting things, have inspiring thoughts, which in turn will make me think and motivates me. So. Surround yourself with interesting people, talk to your friends, colleagues or family members who challenge your thinking and keep you positive. Alternatively, you can find inspiration at talks, conferences, lectures by inspirational people, which is something that I enjoy a lot right now.
  4. Make time to think  – It sounds strange but once you’re running around like hamster in a wheel day in day out it takes extra effort to assign some time for you to just sit down and think and be alone with your thoughts without anyone interrupting you. It will give you the opportunity to reflect on what you want to do, which projects you want to take on next etc. Everything you do begins with a thought, and when you stop thinking you stop taking action. Take some time for yourself and see how your creativity will take off!
  5. Remember why – Sometimes motivation can fade as time goes on. Make a list of reasons why achieving your goals ist important to you, and keep it where you can see it (e.g. hang it up in your office or put it on your desk). Read it whenever you need a boost to get you going again!

3 Thoughts On Trying To Be A More Minimalist Consumer

Hello!

A quick note before we start. I’ve revamped my notification emails, so don’t be surprised if today’s mail looks different than the ones before*. They look definitely better than the ones before (no offense WordPress but those mail notifications are super ugly). The frequency of the newsletter will also be different. As opposed to every day from Monday to Friday, I will spare you the spam and will only send you a mail with kind of a resume of the week and my personal highlights (if I dare say so) on Fridays. Sound good? Then enter that box on Home (here) and subscribe to the newsletter. Also, if anyone has a suggestion for an alternative word to newsletter (it sounds sooooo bad), do let me know. It would be much appreciated.

Ok, so the self-promotion part is over now. Let’s get to the real content.

Living in the US, even if it only has been for a couple of months, has made me realize how consumerism really is a main pillar of American culture. You can purchase basically everything everywhere (and online as well) at any hour of the day to be delivered to your door the next day, using up all those coupons and deals and special offers you have at hand. Also, advertising is literally EVERYWHERE, calling you to buy.

It made me reflect on my own consumer behavior and when I stumbled across the Minimalists’ practical guide on how to become a minimalist consumer I thought it would be interesting to share the three points that stood out most to me with you guys (check out their original, long blog post here).

  • Adopt a traveler’s mentality of only having what you need. We only take what we need when we travel (because we don’t want to pay that overweight at the check-in, haha). And we’re fine and feel light, right (you’re on a holiday too, so that helps I guess)? The Minimalists claim that adopting a traveler’s mindset provides the same benefits and not only for the duration of a vacation but for a lifetime.
  • Compare down. President Roosevelt once said, “Comparison is the thief of joy.” He was, of course, absolutely right. As we begin comparing our lives and possessions to those around us who have more, we lose joy and happiness. And we begin trying hard to close the gap because we always compare upward—looking at those who have more. Why not break this trap if by taking greater notice of those who need more and start spending time with people who have less.
  • Consider the full cost of your purchases. Usually when you buy something, you only look at the sticker price. But this is rarely the full cost of your purchase. Our purchases always cost us additional time, energy, and focus (cleaning, organizing, maintaining, fixing, replacing, or removing). Making a habit of considering those expenses into our purchases when you’re about to buy something will allow you to make more confident decisions.

While the Minimalists’ premise is to overcome consumerism I wouldn’t go as far as that, my goal is to (just) become a more aware and mindful consumer by taking the points above more into consideration. Still, a beautiful bouquet of fresh tulips is something I want to keep indulging myself with every once in a while.

Have a great weekend everyone, enjoy it to the fullest!

And if you consume anything you might think about those little inputs. Byeeee!

* Stupid me, the moment I published this post I realized I hadn’t deactivated the old subscription notification. Please excuse the double spam today! Won’t happen again.

How To Declutter your Makeup (Mess)

In the spirit of this week’s topic, minimalism, I’ll be sharing with you my (very easy) tips on how to declutter your makeup/beauty products collection today.

Main goal would be to only have products that you like and appreciate and most importantly of all, still use (they don’t do you any good catching dust in the cupboards, don’t they?).

Are you ready? Cause we’ll be talking about getting rid of (at least some) your red lipsticks in different nuances you collected during your red lip phase (that btw with hindsight look exactly the same even though if someone would have told you that back then you would have shockingly responded that they had no idea).

Put it all on (what’s going to be a big ol’) pile

Even our friend Marie Kondo says so, it all begins with gathering your belongings on the floor (which possibly will instantly make you realize that you have gone overboard in some sort of way). We’re also talking about getting all of your lip products in every bag and pocket you own. Unless you own a more minimalistic beauty collection anyways, I would suggest you form categories (lipsticks, foundations, brushes, hair products, fragrances etc.) for going through the products.

Check expiration dates (aka the quick and easy way to say goodbye)

It’s really the first question you should ask yourself: Is this expired? If there’s no expiration date, follow these rough guidelines: Mascara goes “bad” three months after opening, lipstick after 2 to 3 years, concealer and foundation after six months, moisturizer after 6 months to a year, cleansers after a year, and powder products after 2 to 3 years. Weird smells, textures, colors are also good indicators.

When did you use this for the last time?

If you can’t remember the last time you used a product, it might be an indication that you don’t really need it. If you forgot about the product but actually like it, put it in a place next to other of your products that you use on a daily basis to give it more use.

How many duplicates do you have of this item?

It’s time to talk about those 20 red lipsticks.

I’m sorry. But be honest, you probably only need one or two at most. Keeping just your favorites and ditching the rest will both save you space and ensure that you use your favorite more often. Ideally, after this you will also be more mindful of what you already own, keeping you from accidentally repurchasing dupes in the future.

Would you buy this again or recommend it to a friend?

This is probably the most effective question that will show you how much you love a product.

Let me know if you have other tips to declutter your make up collection! Have a great day!

On (Kind Of) Having A Capsule Wardrobe

Hello you

Another day, another minimalism-related post for you. Today’s post is going to be centered all around clothing, shoes and accessories, basically all the good stuff. Or should I say rather the lack or minimal amounts of them? We’ll get to that in a second. Grab a cup of tea and get comfortable.

What is a capsule wardrobe?

I first learned about the whole concept of capsule wardrobes about one and a half years ago. As far as I know the blogger Caroline from Un-fancy (absolutely check out her blog here) started the whole movement by documenting her own experience of living with a small, intentional wardrobe by posting her style photos every day.

Her approach in a nutshell:

  • Dress with only 37 pieces* of clothing for three months (basically one season of the year)
  • AND: Not to shop during those 3 months.  Sounds adventurous, right?
  • To plan and shop for your next capsule during the last two weeks of the season
  • How much you buy is up to you but Caroline reminds us that less is more

Ok, now that we’ve got the whole definition down, you’re ready to get your own capsule experiment going. One last input provided by Caroline that I found really helpful to get the whole thing started was the Capsule Planner (you’ll find it here). It is a great way to reflect on your wardrobe, what type of colors, materials and pieces you are drawn to and if they match your lifestyle.

Why you should try it

Imagine a world without you standing in front of your closet desperately saying one of the following statements (btw total first world problem alert):

  • “I don’t have anything to wear” (even though your closet is technically full…very full actually)
  • “I don’t know what to wear”

The capsule experiment will help you in narrowing down your overcrowded wardrobe into just the items that really work for you, that you really like and that you will actually wear. So that the above mentioned scenarios will never happen again.

Sorted.

Why I kind of failed at having a capsule wardrobe

Sooo. I read everything about how to get started with my capsule wardrobe and I actually did (kind of) go through with it for about one year.

I marked four reminders in my calendar as to when I could shop again and I can’t tell you how I excited was I could shop again. Instead of dipping into the stores every once in a while, staying away from them and THEN going back in will make you more aware of what is on offer I found (as opposed to seeing it all the time).

Also, you will appreciate the clothes you have even more and it really makes your life a whole lot easier. Where I failed, however, was the amount (damn you tshirts, shirts and shoes, I just love you too much). I surpassed the number of 37 (I was more hanging around 100+ back in Switzerland). Still, when we moved here I managed to get to 56 (yay). It’s all small numbers and details that don’t matter in the end.

Happy to have talked to you (even though it was kind of a one-way conversation so far). Would love to hear your thoughts on the whole capsule wardrobe thing in the comments below. Do you have one? Would you consider creating one?

Have a lovely day y’all!

* Your 37 pieces should include: tops, bottoms, dresses, outerwear, and shoes. Your 37 pieces should not include: workout clothes, jewelry, accessories, purses, swimsuits, pajamas/loungewear, underwear, and the jeans you wear when you paint your living room.