3 DIY Face Masks You Can Whip Up in Your Kitchen

Beauty products can be expensive—especially when you’re trying to keep up with the latest masking trends. As someone who’s struggled with breakouts and uneven skin tone for the longest time, I always look for at-home natural DIY alternatives that offer the same benefits as many high-end face masks. Here are just a few:

PHOTO: Amber Sudra

1—Coconut oil. The benefits of adding coconut oil to your beauty routine are widely discussed. I love using it as a natural moisturizer. Simply rub about a teaspoon of coconut oil onto your face, and let the oil sink in for at least 20 minutes. Some people choose to leave the oil on their face until it’s all soaked in, but if it’s too much moisture for you and you have somewhere to go, you can wipe it off with a clean towel to reveal glowing skin.

2—Turmeric. Turmeric is known for being high in antioxidants, which helps with acne, dry skin, and overall texture. Not only is the orange colored mask fun to apply, but it’s also super easy to make. In a small bowl, combine a teaspoon of turmeric, a few drops of honey, two tablespoons of milk (or yogurt), and a tablespoon of flour. Mix all the ingredients together, and then apply the mask for about 20 minutes. You may have some leftovers which you can keep in the fridge to use later that week.

3—Baking soda. Baking soda is great for balancing the PH level of your skin. This allows it to help with blackheads, inflammation, and over time, it can slowly heal acne scars. The mask is really easy to create, just mix a tablespoon of water with 1 1/2 teaspoons of baking soda, apply and allow it to sit for about 10 minutes. Rinse it off with warm water, and then apply a moisturizer.

Try out these face masks, and share with us on social @CFashionista!

Additional photos by Cassidy Clark.

5 Simple Tips for a Happy and Healthy Lifestyle

Between pulling all-nighters, gaining the freshman 15, and overindulging in coffee, college life can be stressful and unhealthy. It’s no secret that these habits are detrimental to your mind and body in the long run. Try incorporating these five simple tips into your routine for a happy and healthy lifestyle.

PHOTO: Kelly Rogowski


When you’re feeling upset or anxious, release all the pent up negative energy through meditation. It provides time for introspection and relaxation to boost your mood. Find a quiet place, close your eyes, and slowly take some deep breaths. Try going to a local park with a yoga mat and sitting calmly without the distraction of social media or school work for 15 minutes. Even a little bit goes a long way in improving your happiness and health.

PHOTO: Kelly Rogowski

2—Stay hydrated

Coffee is a staple of college life, but too much negatively impacts your health. It’s important to stay hydrated throughout the day, especially if you are an avid coffee drinker. Carry a reusable water bottle as a reminder to constantly drink water when you’re on the go in between classes and other activities. It’s such a simple step with so many benefits that will add to a happy and healthy lifestyle.

PHOTO: Kelly Rogowski


Though your schedule may feel overbooked, routinely exercising is absolutely necessary for a happier and healthier lifestyle. You don’t have to engage in intensive training; try easing into a more active lifestyle with a 15-minute walk and 5 minutes of planks. Anything that gets your body moving and your heart rate up will improve your mood and productivity levels. Throw on a cute activewear outfit and start exercising your way to a happy and healthy lifestyle.

PHOTO: Kelly Rogowski

4—Eat healthy foods

It may be easier to grab a slice of pizza or indulge in some late night junk food, but eating healthy foods is a key part of living a happy and healthy lifestyle. Maintaining a balance is crucial to feeling better about yourself and staying healthy. Try sticking to a regular eating schedule that involves a mix of all the different food groups.

PHOTO: Kelly Rogowski

5—Appreciate the little things in life

When it feels like the entire world is against you, take a step back and appreciate the little things in life. It’s totally okay to have a bad day or even a bad week, but when it feels like everything is spiraling out of control, there’s always something positive hiding in the background. The best thing you can do is take a step back and think about all the little things that make you happy. Turn off your phone, go for a walk, and appreciate all the beautiful little things life has to offer.

How do you maintain a happy and healthy lifestyle? Leave a comment and let us know!

6 Ways to Destress After Your First Week of College

It’s only the first week of college classes and you’re already stressed to the point where you’re looking forward to winter break. Don’t worry, we’re right there with you. Whether you’re a freshman in college or you’ve got three years of experience under your belt, none of us can escape the stress the first week of class brings. So, here are my friendly tips and tricks on how to de-stress and avoid a total meltdown before the first set of tests have even come over the horizon.

PHOTO: Anna Coke

1—Stay organized

Yes, I’m sure you’ve heard it before and you’ll hear it again. Staying organized can save you from so much stress! Buy a planner, get some sticky notes, use those brightly colored pens, and keep track of your busy schedule. I’ve found writing lists of things I want to accomplish releases that stress from my mind.

2—Treat yourself

Take a lesson from Donna and Tom and “treat yo self!” There’s nothing wrong with taking an afternoon off from studying to do something you enjoy, like grabbing a coffee or shopping with some friends. It’s important you’re prioritizing yourself and not getting lost in your to-do list.

PHOTO: Kelly Rogowski


Studies have shown meditation has a plethora of health benefits. It reduces stress, improves concentration, and increases self-awareness and happiness. Plus, it also slows aging as an added bonus. If you’re new to the meditation game, you can start off small by doing a couple minutes of meditation a day. You can also look for meditation classes in your area.

4—Be active

If meditation isn’t your thing then find another way to release pent up energy by being active. Whether it’s yoga, soccer, jogging, or Zumba, exercise stimulates your brain and leaves you happier and more relaxed. Try a group fitness class at your gym or go for a 30-minute power walk with a friend.

PHOTO: Kenia Viezcas

5—Find your happy place

It’s important you have a place on or near your campus where you feel you can unwind and relax a bit. I like to call it your happy place. I have two happy places at my university, one on campus and one off campus (both are coffee shops, of course). Find a place you love and make it your go-to location for some R&R.

PHOTO: Kelly Rogowski


Try something new! If there’s a place you’ve walked by and thought “I should go check that out,” then you should totally do it. Take the time to explore places around you. It’s an easy way to de-stress and to get to know your campus. You don’t have to limit exploring to just physical locations. Explore new ideas, new opportunities, or anything that sparks your interest.

How do you like to de-stress? Let me know in the comments below!

Your First Half Marathon Will Be No Sweat With This Runner’s Advice

If you had asked me four years ago if I could ever see myself running a half marathon, I would tell you “no way.” It wasn’t until the summer before my freshman year of college that I decided to start running… and I haven’t stopped since. After running my first half marathon in May, there were a lot of things I learned from it. Here are a few tips for your first half marathon!

PHOTO: Kelly Rogowski

Wear the right shoes.

One thing I especially regret from my race is not wearing and training in the right shoes. My favorite Nikes just did not seem to cut it. They were already a year or so old and were not supporting my feet and ankles well enough, causing some very annoying pain while training and especially during my marathon. Before you start your training, spend some time doing research and get a reliable pair of shoes. Your body will thank you. No expensive clothes needed; just a supportive pair of shoes and a little motivation.

Be consistent with training.

Consistency is key when training for anything, but especially when training for a half marathon. I was already a consistent runner before I started training for my race, but I still needed to focus on my training once the race date approached. No matter how far you run, being consistent will significantly help you to improve cardio and get your body used to running. I honestly believe anyone can run a half marathon if they focus on their training and are consistent enough.

PHOTO: Kelly Rogowski

Having a training partner helps.

I trained for my half marathon with a good friend of mine, and that was one of the best decisions I made. Having an accountable person is a great way to keep consistency. It also made the dreaded longer runs less boring when I had someone there to talk with. If you are considering doing a half marathon, ask around to see if anyone wants to join you so that you can be accountability buddies.

Don’t stress.

I know that 13 miles can sound daunting at first, but it is an incredible feeling after you accomplish it. As long as you try to stay as consistent as possible, you will be just fine. I find running to be so therapeutic. Though the training process seemed rough, it was all worth it in the end to cross that finish line with a smile on my face and an accomplished feeling in my heart.

Have you ever run a half marathon before? Comment below with your tips for new runners!

5 Steps to Achieving a Healthy Balance in College

We all know getting back into our college routines can be a challenge. While going through your first few weeks, stressors arise and it is easy to become overwhelmed. From mental health to physical health, here are five tips to assist you in keeping a healthy balance this semester.

PHOTO: Jordyn Wissert

1—Get organized

Get yourself an agenda and a cup of coffee and have a long date with each of your syllabi. Write down every single assignment, quiz, and exam in your new planner. Mapping out all of the dates will help you with time management and keep your stress levels low. Once you get organized, set achievable goals. Your goals can be in regard to schoolwork, your health, or even trying to read a new book each month.

PHOTO: Kelly Rogowski

2—Create a workout routine

Studies have proven time and time again that a simple workout routine can boost our mood, reduce stress, and provide physical benefits. Find something you like to do, whether it be yoga, running, or even taking a group fitness class! Don’t overdo it or beat yourself up for missing a sweat session. Again, it is all about finding that healthy balance in our crazy college schedules and keeping our bodies healthy and strong.

PHOTO: Kelly Rogowski

3—Treat yourself

In the great words of Tom Haverford, “treat yo self” to the little luxuries in life. This doesn’t mean impulsively spend half of your savings on a new pair of shoes (unless you really want to). It just means you shouldn’t stress about eating that pizza on Friday night. Buy that expensive latte you really could live without. Do not be ashamed to spend some cash on these luxuries, and do not kick yourself if you’ve had cheat meals three days in a row. Again, find that healthy balance and learn to love living your life.


PHOTO: Lex Kelly

4—Hang out with friends

As busy as your schedule may be, find some time in between classes and schoolwork to unwind with your friends. Not only is going out for lunch a perfect excuse for a study break, but it is also a great morale boost. Taking time to go out and have fun with the people you love is important. Sometimes all you need is a little therapy session with the girls to get you right back on track!

PHOTO: Valerie Cammack

5—Have some alone time

This may be one of the most important tricks to achieving the all-around healthy balance in your world. We all need to decompress and let our minds rest every once in a while. Be a little selfish. It is okay to take a nap or to let your mind become numb while binging on your favorite reruns. Take an hour or two whenever you need it, and don’t apologize for it.


How do you keep a healthy balance during the semester? Let us know in the comments below!

4 Things You Can Actually Do to Start the Semester Off Right

As fast as we packed our bags to leave campus for the summer, we’re back moving into our new dorms, putting up decorations, and prepping for the new school year. I always feel extra motivated to start the year on a good note. With these tips, you can start your semester strong and develop some habits to last you throughout the school year.

PHOTO: Kelly Rogowski

1—Create a workout routine

At the beginning of the semester, create a workout routine and build it into your schedule from the first week of classes onward. You’re more likely to stick to it since it has been a part of your daily or weekly schedule since the beginning. I like to take a look at the classes my gym offers or schedule time to go with a friend to hold myself accountable! Whether you try a class or learn to fall in love with cardio, create a routine that works for you. 

PHOTO: Kelly Rogowski

2—Get a water bottle and stay hydrated

Remembering to carry a water bottle is half the battle to stay hydrated. Buying a cute water bottle at the beginning of the semester is a little incentive to stay hydrated every day. I love carrying my S’well bottle around with me, and because I bring it everywhere, I end up drinking water all day long.

PHOTO: Maddy Haller

3—Set up your planner or online calendar

This may seem obvious to my fellow Type A college students out there, but setting up your planner or online calendar is key to a successful semester. Write in any club obligations, meetings, or practices you have to attend as well as major due dates, exams, and any social plans you have. I love keeping my paper planner as a to-do list of my assignments and responsibilities and my calendar on my phone synched with everywhere I have to be (classes, meetings, gym etc.). Everyone has a different organizational system, but find what works best for you and stick with it.

PHOTO: Maddy Haller

4—Find something to look forward to

During a particularly stressful week, my friends and I like to plan a fun dinner or activity for the weekend to give us a reward at the end of the week. Whether it’s a shopping trip for some new fall sweaters, tickets to a game or concert, or just going out for a meal outside of the dining hall, having something to look forward to is a helpful motivation during those intense study sessions!

By creating a workout routine, remembering to stay hydrated, setting up your calendar, and making plans, you are a few steps closer to a successful semester inside and outside the classroom.

What are your favorite ways to prepare for a new semester? Let me know in the comments below!

4 Ways to Satisfy Your Sweet Tooth Without the Guilt

If you have a sweet tooth you must know how hard it is to stay away from decadent treats. Let’s face it, anything that completely satisfies those cravings is not going to be the healthiest choice. Personally, I need sweets in my life, but I am also into fitness and healthy living. It is frustrating for me to put these two together. I decided to find low-calorie, guilt-free foods that can satisfy these cravings.

1—Fruity desserts. Açaí has been around for a while as a healthy alternative for dessert. I went to a local organic restaurant where they have a variety of options. I chose an Açaí Bowl with pineapple, strawberries, kiwi, granola, bee pollen, and agave. It was a great mix of sweet flavors that also felt clean. Other fruity alternatives include smoothie bowls, frozen yogurt, and chocolate-dipped fruit. Just remember to keep your toppings healthy and to consume in moderation, otherwise, it becomes just as bad as any other dessert.

2—At home recipes. Grab a recipe book and get to the kitchen! You can also follow food blogs or Instagram accounts that post step-by-step videos of recipes. You’d be surprised by the endless possibilities, and it doesn’t have to be much work! Homemade, healthy sweets will keep you from grabbing the cookies your grandma brought over.

3—Low-calorie products. Sometimes you don’t have time to make your own treats, but you need something around for when the cravings hit. There are many products nowadays that allow us to indulge for fewer calories and better nutrients, such as Halo Top, Enlightened, Dole Dippers, Yasso, and Skinny Cow. I am currently obsessed with Skinny Cow’s 45-calorie, coffee-filled chocolates. I also tried Halo Top’s Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Ice Cream, for research purposes, of course. Other than the extra $3-4 spent, the only noticeable difference is that it is less creamy and the chunks of cookie dough are smaller. Despite this, it was delicious, satisfying, and worth it, especially for only 360 calories a pint.

4—Exercise. The key to success is achieving a balance. If you know that you need your sweets, then exercise! For example, I went on a two-mile jog to the grocery store to buy the Halo Top. I felt like I deserved to treat myself, but I also knew that I couldn’t just eat the whole pint because I had exercised. Exercising is not an excuse to eat anything you want. However, it does allow you to indulge a bit more without the guilt. Grab your sneakers, a fun sports bra and legging set, and get moving!

These alternatives have helped me stay happy and healthy during my fitness journey. If you like sweets, do not deprive yourself of them! Find a balance between your diet, exercising, and what you enjoy. I hope this helps my fellow dessert lovers as it has helped me!

Have you tried any of these? Let me know in the comments below!

4 Tips to Help You Beat the End-of-Summer Blues

Even though the end of summer might have you listening to the melancholy melodies of Lana del Rey’s “Summertime Sadness,” don’t let the fast-approaching fall keep you from soaking up the last few weeks of the season. Instead, use these dwindling days of August to get in your happiest and most positive state of mind so you’ll be ready to transition to September with ease.

Indulge in the Little Things

Everyone has that one little thing that automatically brightens their day, whether it’s your morning latte or an episode of your favorite show on Netflix. Doing the things that you love in these last few lazy days of summer will ensure that you’re making the most of the season. So enjoy a picturesque bike ride or an iced coffee on your morning commute, that is, before pumpkin spiced lattes become your one and only drink of choice. After all, it’s the little things that add up to a summer well spent.

Create an Upbeat Playlist

Music is one of the easiest ways to brighten your mood, especially when it’s a mix of all the best upbeat summer jams. Make a playlist of your favorite summer songs and blast them when you’re hanging out with friends or even just packing up your dorm room essentials. Looking for new artists or songs? Check out Spotify for some of their energetic, up-to-date playlists packed with all this summer’s hits that will keep you singing along into September.

Get Moving

Best said by our favorite Legally Blonde Delta Nu, Elle Woods, “Exercise gives you endorphins. Endorphins make you happy. Happy people just don’t shoot their husbands. They just don’t.” Okay, so maybe that last part isn’t so relevant, but Elle does make a good point. Working out and staying active is a big part of living a healthy, well-balanced life, and can help you get in your best shape before heading back to school. Whether you take an early morning yoga class, hit the pavement for a run after work, or try something completely new, getting your body moving can help you reach your ultimate fitness and wellness goals before the end of summer.

Wear Outfits That You Love

Every Fashionista knows that a good outfit can make or break your day. However, it’s not always being on-trend that counts. It’s all about wearing pieces that you love. For some girls, it’s wearing their coziest and cutest sorority sweatshirt that makes them feel most confident, while for others, it’s a trendy outfit from head-to-toe, complete with accessories and the perfect pair of shoes. Before the end of summer, enjoy wearing your favorite rompers, dresses, and shorts before bundling up for the chillier months of fall. Look good and feel good in your favorite summer pieces and don’t forget to share a few OOTDs on Instagram.

What are your go-to tips for beating the end-of-summer blues? Let us know in the comments below. 

How I Changed My Perspective After a Trip to California

Everyone says it and we’re all experiencing it: no decade is as confusing and overwhelming as the 20s. Faced with countless possibilities, social media, and an ever-changing world, it’s tough to determine what we want and what our place is. Under the pressure of finding a stable career and lifestyle, it’s easy to lose sight of what’s important to us. We’re reluctant to take this time to focus on ourselves because we feel there is a divide between what we should do and what we want to do. We’re afraid to be uncomfortable, and as a result, we prevent ourselves from experiencing wonderful “accidents,” as one of my favorite authors, Gayle Forman, labels unexpected joys in her book “One Day.”

I was stuck in the same mindset when I started college. I wanted to accomplish everything expected of me. But all around me, people were making big life decisions based off of what brought them the most happiness. My sister fulfilled a lifelong dream of moving to California. A college friend transferred to a school in Rome, and another decided to spend her summer in Africa. When I visited my sister in her new home, something shifted. As I sat watching surfers in Malibu, the perfect place, I wondered what would happen if I moved there and never looked back. I could learn to surf and open a surf shop and maybe become vegan (probably not, I loved In-N-out Burger). It seemed unrealistic, like something that only happened in books or TV shows like Hannah Montana (she lived in Malibu!). But the thing is, it wasn’t.

All of a sudden, it was like I opened up a whole world of possibility. Leaving California, I was scared that I wouldn’t be able to maintain my newfound willingness to take risks. But due to airport troubles, I missed my flight in Houston and ended up spending the night there, where I met the kindest people and got myself a fantastic cowboy hat. I began to think about what life would be like if I could always be landing in different places. I thought about the people I’d met by chance and I wondered what would happen if I kept allowing myself to embrace “accidents.” After my trip, I bought a journal and made a list of things to do, some more possible than others. I could work at Disneyland, but I probably wouldn’t date Cole Sprouse. But hey, knowing your limits is part of the process.

When you put yourself on the best path for you, everything else falls into place. Living a life that makes you happy adds positivity to the world. I recently walked into a Boston bakery on a rainy day and had the most life-changing carrot cake that instantly brightened it. Flour Bakery was started by a Harvard graduate with a degree in applied mathematics who left her career behind after realizing that her true passion was baking. I would never have had that cake if she hadn’t.

What can you do for yourself this year? Let me know in the comments below!

My 5 Favorite Products for Great Summer Skin

Excluding makeup wipes, my skin routine begins every night with Neutrogena Rapid Clear Treatment Pads. I have extremely sensitive skin, and these haven’t irritated it at all. While they are gentle enough for my sensitive skin, they also manage to control oil and acne! Honestly, they’ve changed my skin immensely and I love them. After I give the solution from the pads time to soak in to my skin a little, I apply my favorite moisturizer. On top of having sensitive skin, I’ve been struggling with extremely dry skin as well. Going to school in New York hasn’t helped either; between the dry, cold winters, and the radiators, my skin has been drier than ever. I bounced between a couple types of lotions for months before finding my current favorite. The First Aid Beauty cream has changed my life as far as dryness goes. FAB’s cream hasn’t irritated my skin in the slightest and keeps me from waking up with dry, flaky skin. I was hesitant at first to spend so much on an over night moisturizer, but I wouldn’t hesitate to buy this stuff by the vat!

After a good night’s sleep (if all goes well) my routine continues in the morning. One of the biggest problems I had with my skin was that it would start out well hydrated, but begin to flake horribly by the end of the day. It drove me crazy! Glossier’s Super Glow has changed that, and it feels great on my skin. As with my other products, it doesn’t irritate my sensitive skin, and it keeps my skin from drying out during the day. The lightweight serum goes on first in the morning and takes a few seconds to sink in, but once it does your skin feels amazing. After the serum has completely absorbed I apply Aveeno’s Clear Complexion moisturizer. It has salicylic acid in it along with the moisturizer to help keep oil and acne at bay. Even during the day! As you can probably tell by now, I love to load up on moisturizer. I finish off my skin routine with Cera Ve sunscreen with SPF 50. This stuff is thick, and a little goes a long way. While it looks horribly white when you first put it on, it’ll massage in quickly!

What are your tricks to help your skin? Are any of ours the same? Check out CollegeFashionista for more tips!