Friday Favorites Vol. 4: Love Is Blind, The Curse of the Evil Eye & What the Heck is a Sound Bath?

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This past week has been nonstop for me, but I’ve been enjoying every moment of it! From preparing for The Magic of Soul‘s launch next week to making trips in and out of town, I’ve been so productive in both work as well as my personal growth. I really feel like I’m achieving balance in every part of my life now, and while I’m busy, I truly feel like my cup is being filled.

This week’s Friday Favorites ties in some mystical and spiritual stuff, some great custom skincare products I’ve been using, and some addictive reality TV shows I’ve been unable to stop watching.

More Friday Favorites:


Beauty: Skinsei Custom Skincare Regimen


This is probably the first winter in my life where my skin has suffered from so much afflition. Although I have combination skin, my dry spots have never suffered this badly, and my oily patches were always balanced out during previous winters. However, my dryness has been absolutely out of control this winter while my jawline and forehead are constantly breaking out in a combination of papules, pustules and whiteheads – something I’ve never had to deal with in these areas of my face! I worked with Skinsei a few months ago and was given a balanced regimen of a non-stripping cleansing milk, prebiotic toner and toneroxidative stress-relieving moisturizer, and a lightweight makeup primer that treats blemish-prone skin. I really loved my regimen but had to stop using it for a few months to test out some other products – of course, my skin got imbalanced pretty quickly. I recently switched back to this regimen a few weeks ago and my skin is now getting back under control.

Custom skincare regimens can get very expensive, but Skinsei manages to keep their customized regimens very affordable. I highly recommend giving it a try if you have specific skincare concerns that you haven’t been able to figure out. Use code AILEEN20 to get 20% off your first Skinsei box and let me know how it is! Take the diagnostic here.


Style: 14k Gold Plated Evil Eye Necklace

$14.99

My cousin and I have been looking for evil eye jewelry and I settled on this really affordable gold-plated necklace. I wasn’t a fan of the creepy, round, wide-eyed evil eye designs, but this necklace is really subtle and can be layered with other necklaces. I also like the little cubic zirconia touch that gives it a really nice but subtle sparkle and additional texture.


Food: Whole30 Paprika Chicken Skillet

One of my best friends cooked this amazing chicken and brought it over for lunch back during late summer, and it’s been a recipe I really can’t get over. This dish has been something that’s not only sentimental to me, but also really warming for me and my Raynaud’s during this week’s rainy and cold weather. I love a good curry, but I hate getting acne from dairy-based curries – the creamy base of this dish is coconut milk and is loaded with lots of vitamins and mineral-packed spinach and detoxifying cilantro (which I add a LOT more of. Plus, paprika and turmeric means it’s an amazing anti-inflammatory dish (I also add a ton more and continue tasting while it simmers on the stove). It’s delicious served with jasmine rice!


Health: Sound Bath

Earlier this week I attended my first ever sound bath, and it was an incredible experience, to say the least! A sound bath is a meditative experience where you lay or sit down comfortably and a healer plays crystal bowls and gongs while singing, and the unique vibrational properties of these instruments produce the most beautiful sounds that literally hit you at your very core. It’s not so much of an auditory experience as much of it is a physical experience: the soundwaves that those instruments make really fill you up and make your hairs stand. A whole hour of this beautiful sound bath gets you into a very meditative, trancelike state, and sometimes you can see beautiful imagery when your eyes are closed.

For some people who struggle with quieting their minds, sound baths are an amazing tool for guided meditation and are truly transformative. I ended the session feeling like I just had a massage and was so calm, peaceful and blissful! It was also very emotional: some of the gongs actually brought out some suppressed emotions I didn’t expect to be released, so it was an incredibly healing experience for me (a few others in my session also shared the same feelings as well). 

If you’re in Southern California, I highly recommend checking out Eloia Healing Arts in Temecula. Lori, the reiki master and owner of this center performs the sound baths and also has a lot of affordable group sessions during the week, so check out her calendar


Lifestyle: Tibetan Singing Bowl Set

$22.97

Although I’ve had this exact singing bowl for a number of years now, I never really knew how to integrate it into my daily lifestyle – it was more of something I’d play around with when I was bored, or guests would curiously pick up and start playing with. Since I went to my first sound bath, I’ve been using a few of my singing bowls in the morning just to quiet my mind and start my day in a calm and relaxed manner. And at under $25, this singing bowl is really affordable! I’ve seen the same size singing bowls go for $50 or more at boutiques or flea markets, so this price really can’t be beaten. 


Home: Home Life Premiere Classics Quilted Platform Bed

$229 (+$54.45 shipping) for king

It’s been a year and about 5 months now since we first bought this bed frame, and I’m actually really impressed with how well it has held up until now. I bought this on a whim for a sponsored post because we just moved into our house and didn’t have a bed frame yet, so it was only supposed to be a temporary solution. However, I really love the quality for the price ($229 for our king!), and it isn’t just a headboard, but a full bed frame. It even comes with slats! It looks much pricier than the price we paid for and is an amazing neutral piece that can really uplevel the look and feel of a bedroom.


Entertainment: Love is Blind (Netflix)

Admittedly, I am a little bit late to Love is Blind, but I’ve been binge-watching it all this past week and I can’t get enough of it. I never watch reality TV dating shows let alone reality TV at all, but Love is Blind has been so utterly addicting and even Jun can’t peel his eyes away from the TV (we stayed up until 3AM one night watching it together!). It’s a reality show where male and female contestants go on dates with each other but are in separate rooms, and they talk through a wall but cannot see each other at all. The point of the show is for the contestants to find the right person to marry within just a few weeks, and they propose blindly through the wall and don’t see each other until afterward. The social experiment is designed to remove physical attraction from the dating equation and to see if people can find their soul mates before seeing them. It’s a really unique concept and the couple pairings are so interesting!


Article: The Strange Power of the ‘Evil Eye’ (BBC)

Have you ever seen the above symbol in either a football-shaped design or as a circular iris? If you’re a woman, you’ve probably seen this on jewelry from many jewelry and accessory brands. Ironically, the evil eye itself isn’t evil: throughout history and many cultures, it’s actually a symbol that repels evil. Evil eye jewelry is used as an amulet to protect the wearer from the curse of the evil eye. It’s been believed that this curse is simply a malicious energy that can be given to others and is caused by envy. When someone stares at you with this kind of envy, it is believed that they may or may not be knowingly casting a curse on you or wishing ill will upon you. It’s a fascinating energetic/vibrational concept and the reason why I got my evil eye necklace.

This BBC article breaks down the history of the curse of the evil eye perfectly and is super interesting!


This Week’s Mantra: “I create my best work when I’m having fun.”

I’ve really been in crunch mode preparing for my 2nd blog, The Magic of Soul, because it will be launching on March 20th (next week on Friday!). This new blog is less of a business to me and more of a passion project, but I’ve been so bogged down by Baller on a Budget business management to really focus on creating content for Magic of Soul.

Because MoS is my hobby more than it is a business, it’s been hard for me to prioritize it because I’ve been programmed to believe that work comes first and play comes second. However, as the date approaches, I’ve been truly enjoying the creation process of MoS as it’s really filled my creative cup. In fact, I’ve been writing some of my most thought-provoking posts I’ve ever written for this blog.

There is a common sentiment that goes, “do what you love, and you’ll never work another day in your life.” I relate to this, personally. Creating this new blog hasn’t felt like work at all, and I came to the realization that I truly create my best work when I’m having fun. I’ve tried to carry this same belief over to The Baller on a Budget, where I’ve also been finding myself having so much fun. It’s definitely rekindled my love for the Baller blog, because for a while I was starting to feel stagnant. I don’t feel like I’m “working” anymore, but yet, I’m creating so much more content (and it’s much better quality as well!). I have never been able to successfully force myself to work or do laborious tasks: I wind up procrastinating, getting distracted, and making the process so much more painstaking. But when I have fun, work comes easy, and it feels like play.

I know it’s hard to apply this mindset to a job that may not be your #1 passion, but if there is a way to make your job fun, then by all means, do it! If your job allows you to listen to earphones, try listening to audiobooks or podcasts to keep yourself entertained and looking forward to another day of work. Or ask for more creative liberties when putting together a project to present to your boss! There are so many ways you can break free of your ordinary boring routine and create just a little bit of magic with everything that you do. 

That’s it for this week’s Friday Favorites! If you liked Volume 4, be sure to subscribe to my newsletter below so you get informed as soon as I hit publish on a new Friday Favorites post. And don’t forget to follow me on Instagram!


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