#FWSBeautyChallenge Recap + Winner Announced!


doodle via Instagram

Whew! What a gorgeous month it has been on Instagram! I want to give a MASSIVE thank you to everyone who participated in the first ever #FWSBeautyChallenge. It has been so much fun to see how you all have been experimenting with your beauty routines each day.


Doing the challenge all month has certainly helped me get out of my beauty rut. My biggest takeaway was that my routine I had gotten into wasn't really the final say in speed and efficiency. The 15 minutes I was using for my same old go-to's could easily be used to try a new braid (or three) or put on a standout lipstick. I think I needed a reminder that creativity doesn't necessarily take more time or effort. It really got me excited about experimenting with my style again!

Thank you to everyone who didn't tap unfollow after being subjected to an entire month of pictures of me making the exact same face. I've got one and only one, friends, and I'm sticking with it!

I am thrilled to be sending the winner, @lindsayestelle, her brand new beauty bag filled with gorgeous goodies from two of my favorites, Stella & Dot and Mary Kay!

I need to take August as a little break, but I'm already excited about hosting another challenge in months to come! I'm thinking of a broader theme, focused on art/design/crafting/overall creativity. A set of prompts geared at finding creative inspiration in your daily life...?

Fellow IG Challengers- let me know what you think of this idea! I am very open to your thoughts and ideas!

Oh, and in case I haven't made it clear...


 And if you missed out on all the fun because you are not yet following me on Instagram, well here's where I shamelessly self-promote and ask you to do so now.

But seriously, you all are the best! Happy weekend, friends! :)


#FWSBeautyChallenge Inspiration: Fresh Beauty Ideas to Try This Week

Yesterday officially kicked off the #FWSBeautyChallenge! I had been pushing myself lately to bring the fun back into my daily routine. I wanted to get more creative with it all. Try some of the looks I'm always pinning instead of just sticking with the quickest and easiest. And thus the challenge was born!

If you're thinking of joining in (and you totally should!), you can pick any days from the calendar prompts- you can do as little or as much as you choose- and just put your own personal spin on the theme!


click for full size image


Then simply post your pics to Instagram and tag me (@freewillsstudio) plus use the hashtag #FWSBeautyChallenge to be automatically entered in this awesome giveaway!


Every day you post is a new entry so the more you post, the more likely you are to win!

And now for the REALLY fun part! I've been getting a few questions about the prompts, so I thought I'd give a more in depth look at the ideas behind the daily themes and help get all the inspirational/creative juices flowing!

*Sidebar: These are just my own personal ideas in case you would like some more clarification or feel stuck on any one prompt. Please know I want anyone participating to FEEL FREE to take as much liberty with the themes as their hearts desire. There are no "rules" to this challenge.
End rant. Resume post. :)


Friday, 7/3: My Go-To Lip Color

I think this one's pretty self-explanatory. I want to see your standby shade! It's a fun way to see everyone's favorites and maybe get some new ideas for yourself. Like virtual shopping with your BFFs! You can simply show us your pucker or the lip color itself- get creative with it!

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Saturday, 7/4: Red, White, or Blue

Pick one or sport all three! Show us how you're rocking your patriotic spirit!

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Sunday, 7/4: Laid Back Sunday Vibes

Is there anything better than perfectly undone hair or glowing barely-there makeup? Not in my book. Show us how you do casual cool.

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Monday, 7/6: Beauty Bag Favorites

The IG equivalent of looking in someone's medicine cabinet. Show us your favorites and we'll show you ours. (Tip for product image newbies: if you don't have a visually appealing surface to take photos on, a white board or even a large piece of white paper can serve as a great crisp backdrop.)

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Tuesday, 7/7: Tropical Color Mani

This will be a fun one for me because I always tend to go for the moody nail color choices and this will push me to go with something bright and summery. Pick your favorite bright color or go full-on nail art- it's up to you!

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Wednesday, 7/8: Go for the Gold

Gold is my all-time favorite color and the possibilities for this prompt are really endless. Show us how you shine!

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Thursday, 7/9: How I Rock a Top Knot

Top knots are my favorite hair trend to come out in the past couple of years. Show us your favorite top knot variation or try something completely new. There are so many different top knot ideas out there.

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I hope this helped inspire those of you taking part in the #FWSBeautyChallenge. And if you're deciding whether or not you'd like to give it a try, it's never too late to jump in and give it a try!

Follow me on Instagram to see my takes on this week's prompts!


I hope to see you there! :)


The #FWSBeautyChallenge is HERE!! Plus a BEAUTIFUL Giveaway for YOU!

There are only two days left in June, which seems crazy to me. I mean, it just absolutely flew by, didn't it? I always look forward to a new month, though, and especially when it's looking as good as July! I'm excited for so many things coming up, but one in particular is topping my list right now...

The introduction of my first Instagram challenge!


I had such a fun time challenging myself to try new beauty looks this month and get out of the- shall we say- "industrial" beauty phase I was heading towards with all the apartment moving going on. It was such a boost to my routine that I now want to pass the baton on to all of you!

 I'm basically challenging you to simply put a little extra thought this month into feeling beautiful. Whether it's trying a cute summer braid or trying a green smoky eye, it's all about taking pleasure in the process and celebrating feeling beautiful!

Not sold yet? Here's why I think you should absolutely join in...

1. You'll feel awesome. Is there anything better than feeling "done" and ready for the day? I'm not talking Hollywood hair and makeup teams here or anything, but I really believe something as simple as investing an extra five minutes in your style can do wonders for your self-confidence, don't you?

2. You'll get the creative vibes flowing. It's really easy to get into a less-than-exciting routine with our looks. It's like, "This worked last week, let's just do it again every day this week!" Am I right? This is why I love style prompts so much. They give a perfect little nudge towards trying the things we're always pinning and not actually doing. You might just remember how great you look in a dark lipstick or discover a hidden talent for DIY manis. Whatever it is, it's sure to add a fresh pick-me-up to your routine.

3. You'll make it your own. Not sure you want to commit to a 31-day Instagram challenge? Great! Don't! Stick with the challenge for all 31 days or just do a couple of days- it's totally up to you! And so are the prompts for that matter. Feel free to put your own spin on everything. This is not about rules or signing a contract. However, for every post you do put on Instagram...

4. You could win big! Tag your pics #FWSBEAUTYCHALLENGE (and tag me, @freewillsstudio, so I can comment and share!) and each day's post will act as an entry for this gorgeous prize pack, valued at over $200!

Feast your beautiful eyes on all this!...


See! July's starting to look especially beautiful, isn't it?!

Here is the official challenge calendar. Please let me know in the comments if you would like any explanations or ideas for any of the prompts! But do also keep in mind that they are really what you make of them! Let your imagination run wild! :)


Get a head start on your giveaway entries simply by sharing this calendar on your Instagram account with the tags #FWSBEAUTYCHALLENGE and @freewillsstudio! You can even earn MORE giveaway entries (up to five) for each of your friends that you tag to take part with you!

I'll of course be taking part, too. I'm looking forward to sharing styling ideas on the blog each week and sharing some of your pics along the way! I can't wait to see all the awesome looks you come up with!

Here's to a beautiful summer! :)


Five Minute Friday: Taking the Time to Feel Beautiful (plus a New Instagram Beauty Challenge!)

One of the goals I made for myself this month involved fixing my hair and doing my makeup everyday. I see how that might sound completely silly, but between a lot of work-at-home days and being a horrible sweaty monster moving into a new apartment, these things had really become last priority. And I was feeling much less than my most beautiful self.

The thing about it is, I truly love beauty: hair, makeup, nails, whatever. It's just fun, right?! So I set this goal to kind of challenge myself to bring the fun back into it, and it definitely has!


Whether it was trying a darker lip color, a fun mani, or an easy braid, I was really only spending a couple of minutes more than in my regular routine but it was a whole lot more inspiring!

I liked it so much, in fact, that I created a beauty-related Instagram challenge for July to keep the fun going!

I'll be going into more detail on Monday's post, but here's a sneak peek for now...


I hope you'll join in and tag your pictures with #fwsbeautychallenge! There are so many reasons I'd love for you to take part (one of which is a PRIZE!!!). But like I said, more on that Monday. ;)

In the meantime, why not head on over to my Instagram and make sure you're following? July is already starting to look so much more beautiful!


Happy weekend, friends!