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Vacation or staycation? Many stressed workers are opting to save money and unwind at home. If you’re one of them, avoid the following five no-nos during your staycation to make the most of every precious moment.

Forget to Make Plans

If you don’t make specific plans ahead of time, your staycation will probably look like this: Wake up. Go back to sleep. Finally get up at 11 a.m. Watch TV for a while. Realize you are hungry. Eat leftovers while watching TV. Feel bored. Call friend to hang out, then realize everyone is at work. Watch TV. Play video games. Get dressed. Drive to mall to get take-out. Watch TV. Fall asleep in front of TV. Instead, make sure you have at least one or two specific activities planned for each day.

Eat Every Meal Out

There’s nothing wrong with eating out a few extra times during your staycation, but it can get boring. Plus, you can go over budget quickly. Wouldn’t you rather spend money on making memories? Pick a few local restaurants that you’ve been wanting to experience, then make plans to go with friends or family during your staycation. Make home-cooked meals more exciting by planning more adventurous menus and trying out unfamiliar grocery stores.

Answer the Door

If you work outside the home, your staycation will be a new experience for you in that you’ll be spending time at home during the week. This means that you’ll be a target for door-to-door salespeople, religious proselytizers, petitioners, and other strays. If you answer the door to every knock or ring, you’ll waste a lot of time. Instead, ignore the doorbell altogether or screen your visits–you’re not obliged to open the door even if they saw you peeking through the curtains.

Check Email Obsessively

Do not check your work email at all or answer work calls. If you were truly unreachable, your employer would find someone else to hassle, so don’t allow yourself to be taken advantage of just because you’re accessible. You’ve earned your time off and you have the right to enjoy an uninterrupted staycation. If you really must check email, set specific days and times to do so and stick to your plan. Avoid overchecking personal email too.

Spend Too Much Time Alone

Although you might think that a week or so away from other humans is just what you need, spending your entire staycation alone can leave you feeling lethargic and distant. Take advantage of the time off to reconnect with friends and family. Meet up with local friends for lunch or on their day off. Spend some time writing emails or talking on the phone to those old friends you never seem to have time for.

While some of the five above items may not apply to you, you know the ones that do. Unless you want to head back to work feeling as if you’d never been away, pay attention to these tips and plan your staycation accordingly. You deserve it!

by Antonia Anderson

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How To Prevent Your Eye Makeup From Smudging (Even During The Sweatiest Days)

The problem: during the height of summer, you may find your eye makeup smudging, running down your face, creasing, or simply disappearing altogether. And if you dare to venture into your garden or farm with your eye makeup on? Forget about it.

But you have a jam-packed schedule and won’t have time to get all made up for the meeting with your accountant later that morning. You have to decide whether to either skip it or do it beforehand (which we know can end in disaster). But guess what? Your eye makeup is just that versatile – you can master an eye makeup look that suits you – create a colorful ombré, or opt for a simple winged eyeliner look. And then actually get your makeup to stay in place. Really!

Believe it or not, there are ways to avoid this dilemma and keep your eye makeup fresh all day long. Even if you sweat a lot, have oily eyelids, or are currently enduring 95 degree afternoons, you can keep your makeup in place. Here’s how to do it.

Choose the right formulas.

If you want your eye makeup to be sweat-proof, you need to use waterproof or water-resistant formulas. These products won’t smudge nearly as easily as regular eye makeup, so check your labels carefully before purchasing – and when in doubt, read the reviews.

Also, for eyeshadow, opt for powders instead of creams. For eyeliner, use liquid or gel instead of pencil. Pencil and creams both contain oil, so they’re much more likely to smear over time.

Use a primer.

Look for an oil-free primer or pressed powder, and apply it to your lids before you add color or liner. You need to use an actual primer for this to work. Don’t substitute concealer or foundation to prime your eyelids, because those products contain oils which will cause your makeup to move around.

Set your makeup.

After you’re done with your makeup, it’s time to “set” the whole look in place. There are a couple ways to do this. First, for eyeshadow, you can apply a light dusting of a loose, clear powder across your eyelids. For eyeliner, you can apply a powdered eyeshadow in the same pigment on top of the eyeliner.

Alternatively, you can simply use a setting spray and lightly mist it over your eyes (and the rest of your face, if you’re wearing other makeup). This will seal your look in for the entire day.

It’s nice to go out all-natural. And sometimes it’s nice to get all dolled up. Now, the choice is truly yours, even in summertime!


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