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Pregnancy Safe Products

October 3, 2019 / Personal
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Pregnancy has made me wayyyy more aware of what I’m putting on and into my body. There’s a laundry list of ingredients that should be avoided during pregnancy for so many different reasons. Some can cause preterm labor, respiratory issues for the baby, birth defects, the list goes on and on. Since getting pregnant, my most commonly searched phrase has become “is __ pregnancy safe?” Today I wanted to share some of the products that I’ve been using and loving since becoming pregnant. An added bonus is many of these items are all natural products that are safer for everyone to use, not just while pregnant- YAY!

The majority of the skincare products I use are from Primally Pure. I love using this brand because it’s all natural so I can rest easy knowing I’m not putting tons of toxic chemicals on my body.

Here are my favorites:

  • Lavender deodorant– they have tons of options- I’ve tried their tea tree, (regular) geranium, and lavender. I’d say my fave is the lavender, but that’s just scent preference.
  • Mint beauty cream – I use this as my moisturizer
  • Dry shampoo– I use the dark locks, but they also have dry shampoo for blondes too, plus I love that it’s a powder dry shampoo (yay for no aerosols!)
  • Cleansing oil– I have naturally dry skin, but they have cleansing oil for normal, oily and dry skin.
  • Eucalyptus body butter– If you’re a fan of body butter you’ll love this one- It’s so hydrating and a little bit goes a longgg way.
  • Bath Salts– I’ve tried both the sea soak and the flower bath and loved them both! They smell super good and make baths way more relaxing plus they’re amazing on my sore pregnant bod haha.

My other pregnancy favorites are a hodge podge of brands below!

  • Glow Organics Belly Butter– I use this every morning and night to help prevent stretch marks and it provides relief for itchy skin as your belly stretches
  • Honest Company Shampoo & Conditioner– this is also baby safe and tear free so I plan to continue using the shampoo on myself and the baby when he comes. 🙂
  • Belli Body Scrub– good for exfoliating!
  • Aveeno Baby Sunscreen– I follow the general rule “if it’s safe for baby it’s safe for me”
  • Witch Hazel Toner– I started using this before I was pregnant because I had heard great things and knew it was natural so I was happy this was one product I didn’t have to switch during pregnancy.
  • Mambino Organics Body Oil– I use this after showering on my belly while my skin is still damp to help prevent stretch marks.

This post may contain affiliate links however opinions are my own.

Our Baby’s Gender Reveal

October 2, 2019 / Personal
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Before we knew our baby’s gender, one of our favorite things to do was ask our family and friends to guess if they thought we were having a girl or a boy. The vast majority guessed girl, which is what my husband, Keaton, thought we were having. I on the other hand, was convinced this baby was a boy. I joked with Keaton saying I was 100% sure our baby was a boy and then he’d fire back with “well I’m 101% sure it’s a girl!”

People commonly asked us if we had a preference on the baby’s gender, but from the start we both agreed we’d be equally happy either way. To us it seemed like no matter what you can’t lose- either way you get a BABY! (Though I will say that I think my side of the family was secretly rooting for a boy because boys are a rarity in my family!)

When the day finally came for us to find out the gender we were SO excited! Keaton and I decided we wanted to find out in the doctor’s office just us two and right away (patience is not our strong suit). The first half of our appointment consisted of the technician checking out the baby’s development while we eagerly awaited her announcement of the gender. Finally the question came, “would you like to know your baby’s gender?” “YES!” we responded. And then…. “It’s a boy!”

I instantly started tearing up from the joy of knowing we were having a son. Plus, I was glad we could finally stop calling him “it” haha. I was also a little relieved to find out he was a boy because we had finalized a boy name very early on in our pregnancy so I was happy we wouldn’t have to think about baby names anymore.

Our gender reveal oddly enough fell in our lap. Up until a day or two before we took the gender reveal photos I hadn’t planned a thing. Lucky for us, my best friend’s brother and sister in law had just done a gender reveal for their baby girl, but had gotten confetti for both genders so they ended up offering us the blue confetti! Additionally, Keaton’s mom planned a mini family reveal for us where she had a boy and girl balloon ready (depending on which gender the baby ended up being) so we used that for photos as well! Who says winging it is ever a bad thing? Haha!

Megan Rich's cute baby boy gender reveal with blue confetti and boy balloon

3 tips to look natural and feel during your engagement session

September 23, 2019 / Client Tips
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One of the most common things I hear from my clients before a session is “we’re SO awkward in front of the camera.” It’s totally normal to feel uncomfortable in front of the camera, but luckily I have a few tips to help you and your fiancĂ© overcome any fears you have before your shoot. Camera shy friends- these tips are for you! 

Megan Claire Photography | Phoenix Arizona Wedding and Engagement Photographer. arizona desert engagement session at sunset @meganclairephoto

1. Focus on each other!
The best thing you can do during a session is to focus on your partner. Focus on your connection- laugh, kiss, booty bump, whatever feels natural to you! When it comes to your engagement session, there’s no right or wrong way to show off your love! It’s normal to get nervous or feel awkward in front of the camera at first, but remember your fiancĂ© is right by your side feeling the same way so laugh your way through it together and soon you’ll find the laughs are genuine!

2. Choose an activity you love for the engagement shoot
Tip number two is to pick an activity you two love to do together. The possibilities are endless: cooking, hiking, dancing, cuddling on the couch- anything goes! An activity you two love is the perfect way to loosen up those nervous jitters so you can look and feel natural during your engagement session.

Megan Claire Photography | Phoenix Arizona Wedding and Engagement Photographer. arizona desert engagement session at sunset @meganclairephoto

3. Make the poses your own! 
Throughout photoshoots, I always suggest poses to my clients but I always encourage them to make it their own. If your photographer suggests a pose that doesn’t feel quite right, make adjustments that fit your personality and what feels right to you. Feeling comfortable in your poses is the first step to looking natural in your photos. Another BIG pro tip to looking natural is to pay attention to your hands. Are they dangling awkwardly by your side? Are they floating in the air Ricky Bobby style? If your hands are doing something they normally wouldn’t in your everyday life, odds are it’ll feel awkward and that’ll translate in the photos. A great way to keep your hands occupied and looking natural is to interact with your partner- hold hands, hug, caress their cheek, etc.

I hope you found these tips helpful to looking and feeling natural in your engagement photos!

When to take your Engagement Photos

September 18, 2019 / Client Tips
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Woohoo! You’re engaged!! This season of life is such an exciting time in a relationship, but it also can come with a seemingly never-ending to-do list before the wedding day. As you go over your to do list you may have “schedule engagement photos” listed, but now comes the big question: when should you take your engagement photos?

Megan Claire Photography | Arizona Wedding and Engagement Photographer. arizona desert engagement session at sunset @meganclairephoto
  • How will you use your engagement photos?

In the hopes of helping you determine when an engagement session will work best for your busy schedule, I suggest asking yourself these three questions:

Will you and your fiancĂ© be sending a Save the Date card that features your engagement photos? Are you setting up a wedding website? Or do you two want to use the photos personally as a memento of this time in your lives? If you plan to feature your engagement photos on a Save the Date card, I’d highly recommend scheduling an engagement session farther in advance. Save the Dates are generally sent to guests between 4-6 months before a local wedding or 6-8 months prior to a destination wedding. In either case, taking your engagement photos one to two months before sending your Save the Date card is ideal to allow time for your photographer to deliver the finished gallery to your inbox and give you proper time for printing. If your photos will be displayed on your wedding website, you’ll also want to consider when you’d like to publish the site for your guests. Once you know when you’d like to publish it, I suggest giving yourself a week or two beforehand to upload the images to your site. Lastly, if your images will be for personal use only, you have much more flexibility as to when you can take them- even a month prior to the wedding could work in that case.

Megan Claire Photography | Arizona Wedding and Engagement Photographer. arizona desert engagement session at sunset @meganclairephoto
  • What season will be best for your engagement photos?

Weather is a BIG thing to consider when scheduling any photography session if the shoot will be outside. Do you live somewhere it rains or snows frequently? Is it windy, cloudy, hot or somewhere in between? Imagine your perfect engagement photos- what does it look like? Surrounded by snow? In a lush green field? A sunny desert? Once you have an idea of what scenery you’re hoping for, you can determine which season will best accommodate your vision. For example, if you live in the always sunny Phoenix, Arizona- the summer is a tough time for engagement photos since it is so dang hot. In order to work with the Arizona heat, a summer shoot here may entail traveling to cooler weather for the photos or being up and at ’em for a sunrise shoot. Considering your local weather during each season is a great way to narrow down a timeframe for you.  

Megan Claire Photography | Arizona Wedding and Engagement Photographer. arizona desert engagement session at sunset @meganclairephoto
  • What is your availability and your Photographers?

A busy schedule comes with the wedding planning territory so I suggest considering multiple dates that would work for you and your fiancĂ©s schedule and then coordinating with your Photographer to set the perfect shooting date. When it comes to wedding planning, communication as well as organization is absolutely key! Booking your session well in advance will ensure securing your ideal date, time, location, and of course-photographer, so you can be sure you’ll receive engagement photos you’ll cherish for decades to come!

I hope these tips will help determine when to schedule your engagement session!

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