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college advice

In college, Lifestyle on
August 14, 2017

5 Ways To Be More Confident In College With AcneFree

Disclosure: This post has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and AcneFree. All opinions are mine alone. #AcneFreeSummer #AcneFreeLife #CollectiveBias

The end of summer is coming quickly and it’s almost time to go back to school. It’s crazy how quickly summer fades when you are having fun. 

With back to school on the horizon, it’s important to feel as confident as you can, especially if you are going to a new college or school. Today I will be sharing some easy things you can do to boost your confidence.

 5 Ways To Be More Confident In College With AcneFree: {AD} With the school year on the horizon, you don't have any time to not feel like the confident goddess you are. Click through to check out my best tips for being more confident in college, brought to you by AcneFree!

1 | Smile

This is SUCH a simple tip, but you would be surprised what a simple smile can do for your confidence. Smiles release all those happy endorphins, just like exercise. This will create happiness, positivity, and confidence within you.

The great thing about smiling is that you don’t really need anything to smile about. All you have to do is curve your lips up and you get the same results as a genuine smile plus your smile attracts people to you!

2 | Communicate How You Feel Most Comfortable

I am an introvert, y’all, and you can be too! Don’t force yourself into situations where you have to communicate in a way that makes you nervous. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try new things when you go to college, but you don’t have to always force yourself out of your comfort zone. Even at a party you can find a small group of people to talk with if you are an introvert. If you take the time to communicate how you feel most comfortable you will flourish and feel more confident.

3 | Create An Action Plan

So many people come to college without an action plan. Some people (shout out to all the Type As out there) just do better with a plan, I mean, all people do better with a plan to be honest. So, create a plan for how you will succeed in college.

  • How will you define success in college?
  • Where will you find your new friends?
  • How will you study for class?

Have a plan for all the things that could happen in college. Creating that plan today will help you feel more confident when you step foot on campus. Plans change, but having some semblance of an idea about college before you go will help ease your mind.

4 | Drink More Water

Water is amazing for you. When you drink more water than other drinks like soda and juice you create a healthier inside which is bound to make you feel more confident. Confidence comes from the inside, truly, so making healthier food and drink choices will make you feel better and more confident.

5 | Take Care Of Your Skin

While the water takes care of your insides, you also want to take care of your outsides. Even though a lot of your confidence comes from within, a lot of people don’t feel as confident if their outsides don’t match their insides. Taking care of your skin is a great way to make yourself feel more confident.

I am so happy because I got the opportunity to try out a couple of cool products from AcneFree to help me feel more confident and I can’t wait to share those products with you today.

I think young adults and adults in general are always in this limbo of being upset with their skin. We are often told that acne is a teenagers problem, which makes us think that our skin is somehow awful because we still have acne as an adult. Acne happens, but there are many things that we can do to take care of our skin and help the situation.

I don’t have awful skin, but I consistently have small amounts of acne on my face. I was excited to partner with AcneFree to test out one of their duos and their full 24 hour system. I think that both products are great depending on what you need at the time. The duo includes an awesome battery powered brush and their cleanser. The 24 hour system I got from them includes all three steps: the cleanser, toner, and repair lotion. They have so many options for your skin so I would explore the products to see if you do well with just a duo or getting the full blown system.

I tested the system out on my face for twice a day for 4 days to see how these products would affect me. The before and after pictures will be at the bottom of this post as I took these blog photos at the beginning of my journey.

The AcneFree Advanced Deep Cleasning Duo is absolutely perfect. It comes with everything you need to help clear any blackheads and acne breakouts you have as well as deep cleaning your pores. It has two speed settings, and it even comes with batteries (what comes with batteries anymore?!)

Sometimes the best way to help care for any acne you have is a good deep clean. It’s hard to get that with a regular face wash because you can only turn your hand so much. This brush is great because it rotates for you so all you have to do is move the brush around your face and feel it do all the deep cleaning on its own.

I really love AcneFree because you can purchase it so easily. I picked up my AcneFree products from Amazon and they were at my door super quickly because I had Amazon Prime. Yay for 2-day shipping so I could quickly get started adding these amazing products to my skin care routine.

Now, if you are truly like me, you may say, I need it all! AcneFree has some wonderful product systems just for that y’all!

AcneFree’s 24 Hour Acne Clearing System is a great option for someone who wants a full regimen to help them with their acne-prone skin.


This system includes three steps:

Step 1: Oil-Free Purifying Cleanser: This solution, that should be applied twice a day, helps to deep-clean your skin. The exfoliating microbeads in this cleanser helps to remove dirt and oil from your pores and skin as well as eliminate acne bacteria.

Step 2: Renewing Toner: This awesome toner includes vitamins, witch hazel, chamomile, and aloe to help even your skin tone and control the oil you have throughout the day. You should also use this twice a day after you use the cleanser.

Step 3: Repair Lotion: You use this awesome lotion twice a day after you cleanse and use your toner to help fight acne bacteria and help stop new breakouts before they begin.


If you have tricky skin AcneFree has multiple formulas of this product: one for sensitive skin and one for people with severe acne. I don’t have particularly bad acne or sensitive skin so I just picked up the 24 Hour Acne Clearing System.

As a college student I know that it can be difficult to invest in anything, but I think that this makes an excellent investment, and a pretty reasonably priced one at that. You can get either of these products for less than $20! That’s a great steal in my opinion, especially because all of these products last so long (no tiny baby sizes in these products.)

Do you want to shop these products? Hover over this picture to see more and shop all of the products below.


As I stated earlier, I started utilizing these products the day I took these pictures for the blog. I made sure to document a clear picture of my face after every use so that you could follow along with the journey to clearer skin. Keep in mind these are my results after 8 uses. I will have to keep y’all up to date after I make this a bigger part of my routine.

I wanted to test these a bit more for y’all, but I got sick through this process and I honestly think that really messed up with my review of this process as being sick is known to cause acne flare ups.

I wish that I could have kept my lighting as consistent as possible for you, but unfortunately that wasn’t possible. Some of these pictures were taken in my bathroom while others were taken in my bedroom and they both have drastically different lighting.

I think I personally started to notice the most change around use #6-7. 

Try AcneFree For Yourself!

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  • AcneFree is launching a 4-week sweepstakes on August 14th, 2017. 3 Grand Prize Winners will win $1,000 spending money and AcneFree Supplies for a year. Additionally, AcneFree will give away 10 AcneFree® 24 Hour Acne Clearing Systems every week for 4 weeks.
  • No Purchase Necessary. To enter, simply enter your name and email address at http://cbi.as/9rasp Use the form to follow on Instagram and Facebook to earn extra entries.
  • For more information full rules, log on to http://cbi.as/9rasp

What Does Your Skincare routine Look Like?

In interview on
June 6, 2017

Interview With A College Student: Monique Lawrence

Today on the blog I am sharing an interview with Monique Lawrence, a Sophomore Business major at Siena College. In this interview Monique shares great advice on everything from studying to roommate communication. I am so excited to share her answers with you today. So without further ado, let’s start this chat.

 Interview With A College Student: Monique Lawrence | Click through to read my interview with Monique Lawrence a Sophomore Business Major from Siena College. Monique offers great advice on everything from studying to roommate communication so you don't want to miss this interview!


Name: Monique Lawrence

Major: Business

Concentrations: Entrepreneurship, Marketing Communications, Digital Marketing

Year: Sophomore


What made you decide to attend college?
I attended a charter school for all of middle and high school where college is something that was always talked about and encouraged. I was able to look at college campuses and took that we can do anything we put our minds to. My parents wanted me to attend college because they have not been able to get a degree and they wanted me to have a better life. I made the decision to attend college because I wanted to gain more independence, meet new friends, become more open-minded and explore myself as well as new places. 

What has been the best memory of your collegiate life thus far?
The best memory I had in college so far was that I was interviewed by a CEO of a non for profit that tries to help students with the college process because college access is something that is really important to me. A week after the interview, I find my face on a Forbes articles talking about my goals as a entrepreneurship. I was able to catch the attention of the Center of Innovation and am planning on working with them on making a natural hair business in the future. This taught me that resources are all around me in college and I just have to find them as use them well.

What is the best piece of advice you have for incoming freshman?
The best piece of advice I have for incoming freshman is to meet new people. During my freshman year, I joined the Hip Hop Club on my campus and I meet some of my close friends. I also started hanging out in the cafe on campus a lot more and I also meet a lot of the commuters so are really amazing people. This helped me to feel accepted on campus and find out about events and clubs that I joined on campus. 

What organizations are you involved in?
I am a Bonner Service Leader, where I serve 8 hours at a local high school. I am on the EBoard for The National Society of Leadership and Success chapter on campus. I am also in Hip Hop club, The Black and Latino Student Union and the Siena College Entrepreneurship Organization. 

What is your best study tip?
My best study tip is to figure out where you like to study.  During my freshman year, I was a Computer Science major and I would stay in the science building and finish all of my homework. During sophomore year, I changed to Business and found myself doing work in either the library or in the student union. You do not have to be in the library to do your homework. Most of my friends like to do homework at their personal desk or at the Dunkin or Starbucks up the street. Everyone is different with their study space. 

What is your best tip for surviving living in the dorms/residence halls?
My best tip for living in the dorms is communication is important. Most of the issues I had faced could have been solved if all of the roommates talked to each other face to face instead of over text.  Even if it something as simple as someone is coming over to work on a project, just give your roommate a heads up. They will appreciate it at the end of the day.

What is your best tip for eating healthy in college?
The best tip for eating healthy is to track what you eat. I have an Erin Condren planner and one of the boxes on my layout is used to write down what I ate during the day. I do it so I can have an idea of the things I ate and if it is really okay to have another cupcake. While it is important to treat yourself, you have to do it in a way that will make you a better person in the end. 

What is your best tip for sticking to your budget in college?
The best tip is write out a budget each week with how much you want to spend. For example, I spend at least $15 on coffee a week so I started to make my own in my room. Some apps that do this is Mint, which is what I used to track my shopping and food budget. 


Love Monique’s advice and want to see more from her? Check out her studyblr on Tumblr or check her out on Instagram and Twitter.

Want to be interviewed for Interview With A College Student–click here to take the survey.

In Academics, Lifestyle on
May 25, 2017

3 Things House Hunters Taught Me About The College Search Process

Recently I found out that House Hunters was on Hulu, so of course, I started binge-watching episodes of this show. House Hunters is a show that is on HGTV and it follows couples as they tour homes and decide which home they would like to call their own. As I was watching this show I realized that you can take a lot of the lessons learned there and use them to discuss the college search process. It is summer and whether you are about to start college after a grueling search process or you are looking forward to starting the search process I think you will like this post.

3 Things House Hunters Taught Me About The College Search Process | The college search process is difficult, but if you follow these three lessons I learned from House Hunters, it will be a little less so.

1. You Must Have A Wishlist

Creating a wish list of what you expect from your college is key to have a successful college search process, just like it is key to finding the perfect house on House Hunters. If you have ever watched an episode of House Hunters you know that the whole premise of the show is finding the person or couple three houses that meet elements of their wish list while also sticking within their budget. In order to have a successful college search, you need to start with a strong wish list. Here are some ideas of things you may want to include on your wish list, ultimately you want to make sure that you create a wish list that is specific enough so that you aren’t looking at all the colleges but wide enough so that you have enough colleges to look at.

Potential Wishlist Items

  • Country: What country do you want to attend college in?
  • Region Of The Country: What part(s) of that country would you most like to be in?
  • Majors Offered: What major(s) do you need the college to offer?
  • Urban, Suburban, or Rural Surrounding Area: What does the surrounding area look like? Are you in a small town or a big urban city?
  • Small, Medium, or Big Campus: How big is the campus population?
  • On-Campus Dining Options: What options are there for eating on campus?
  • Public Transportation: What does the public transportation look like on campus and in the surrounding area?
  • Extra-Curricular Activities: What clubs and organizations are on the college campus?
  • On-Campus Living Options: What living options are there? Will you be forced to live in a dorm or are there on campus apartments?
  • Class Sizes: How big are the classes? Can you expect a ton of huge freshman lectures, or are the class sizes pretty small?
  • Campus Diversity: How diverse is the campus? If you are a part of a minority population will you feel like an outcast?
  • Campus Safety: How safe is the campus? Are their blue lights around campus? Is the Police Department Heavily Involved?
  • Cost Of Attendance: What is the COA of the campus? Is it expensive? Are their scholarship opportunities?
  • College Prestige: How prestigious is the university to the state or the country as a whole?
  • Alumni Relations: How are the alumni of your college doing? Are they able to easily find jobs?

Narrowing Down Your Wishlist

As you can tell there are SO many things that you can add to your wish list, but it is about narrowing down your wish list to a couple of really important details. House Hunters obviously oversimplifies this process as their wish lists usually include three simple must-haves, but you do want to simplify this wish list as much as possible so that you can have an easy search college search process.

Sit down with your preliminary thoughts about your ideal college and see if you can narrow that wish list down a bit so that you are focusing on the most important wish list items instead of all the wish list items.

2. Compromise Is A Must

It is simply not realistic to expect that you will find a college that meets all of your wish list items perfectly. Compromise is key if you want to find a college that you will be able to call home without getting overly stressed out.

If you look at an episode of House Hunters, rarely will the real estate agent be able to show the couple a house with all of their wish list boxes checked off. Also, sometimes the real estate agent will show them a house that is way off their radar, but it ends up being a beautiful house that they really feel at home in.

Don’t let your wish list stop you from exploring

When you have these checkboxes it can be really easy to become so focused that you forget to explore a bit. Finding your perfect college will take time and energy. You must be willing to slow down and really explore the different college options that are out there.

With a house search, exploring is a bit easier because you can hire someone like a real estate agent to help you navigate the search process. There are ways to explore with the college search process, though, you just have to be open to all the ways that you can explore a college campus.

Look at colleges and universities that are completely outside of your wish list. If you are sure you want to attend college in a big city, also look at some colleges that are in a suburb or a rural town. You might be surprised at how you feel once you actually look at those colleges.

3. Touring Multiple Colleges Is Crucial

This may just be the past college tour guide in me talking, but I believe that touring as many colleges as you can is crucial. If you can only afford to tour one college, that is okay, but I think the more the merrier.

In an episode of House Hunters, they really make a big deal of touring each house, asking questions about the house and the neighborhood, and just being an engaged homebuyer. When you tour your college, you should try to be just as engaged. When I was a college tour guide I loved when people were open and asked a lot of questions. I didn’t like giving the same, boring cookie-cutter campus tour. Don’t know what to ask your college tour guide? I have a great list of possible questions you may want to ask as you are touring.

What if you can’t tour a campus?

Sometimes you can’t afford to tour a campus. You may be looking at colleges out of state or even out of the country so a campus tour would be asinine. If that is the case, consider these other options:

  • Virtual Tours: Many college campuses have invested in videos that showcase the campus virtually. These can be a great resource if you can’t come to campus.
  • Information Nights: If you live in a nearby state or in a different part of a state, colleges will often host information nights closer to your location. I know that my alma mater UCA used to host Information Nights where college admissions counselors would attend events in different cities across the state which helped bring the college to smaller towns across Arkansas.
  • Brochures: Many colleges have tons of admissions brochures that can be really in-depth and chock full of informational tidbits.
  • College Newspapers: Another great way to get a feel for the college is by reading their college newspaper. A lot of colleges share their newspapers online so if you can find them, it would be a great way to get a feel for the campus from students who live on/near campus.
  • Social Media: Another great source of learning about a college is by looking at their various social media platforms. Don’t just look at the information that the college itself puts out. Look at people who attend the school as well. Do they show pride in their university? Do they talk about their campus community often? Really look at what people are saying about your potential school and how they interact with it on social media.

Bias with virtual tools

Obviously, if you are depending on virtual tools to think about the college search process you will have a bit of bias. Virtual tours are crafted by the university (and so are information nights and brochures), college newspaper staff members are often paid at least somewhat by the university, and everyone tries to be as positive as possible on social media.

It is important to just try to get information from as many sources as possible to paint your picture of the university and try to see through the bias. Of course, there is going to be some amount of bias when it comes to virtual tools and you can’t expect to get the full picture, but that shouldn’t stop you from using these tools.

Final Thoughts

House Hunters is a great show that can teach us a ton about the college search process. This blog post idea is such a basic concept but I am always here to share random, interesting thoughts about college and college life with y’all.

What has a television show taught you about the college search process?

In Academics on
March 10, 2017

How To Write A Paper In College When The Prompt Is Vague

Professors often give vague writing prompts when a big end of the year paper is due. This is usually so that you won’t feel pigeonholed to a topic and so that you have some creative freedom in writing process. For students, though, this doesn’t always translate to a fun time. In fact, the endless possibilities sometimes end up hurting students more than it ends up helping them. This doesn’t have to be your reality though. You can create great papers, even when your professor’s prompts are less than helpful. Today’s blog post is going to show you how to turn a vague prompt into a crazy amazing paper.

How To Write A Paper In College When The Prompt Is Vague | One of the hardest things to do in college is write a paper with a vague prompt. Today on The Happy Arkansan I am walking you through all the steps you need to take to write an amazing paper even when you don't fully understand the prompt given.

Keep Reading, Darling