Welcome to Love Blog Challenge 2018! This is a monthly blog link-up (it feels more like a blog party to me) through the entire month of February. Brita Long is the host and if you haven’t checked out her Christian feminist blog, you’re missing out. I’d guess that most of you reading here would like Brita’s blog (BelleBrita.com) . I’ll introduce her and your cohosts below.

I’ll be cohosting the Love Blog Challenge for four days but there are prompts every week day so click around and explore what everyone else has to say! Brita has a more thorough introductory post here.

Love Blog Challenge 2018 Belle Brita & Provocative Joy

Today is Day 5 and we are talking about guilty pleasures.

My guilty pleasures fall neatly within 4 categories. I’m very proud that they’ve kept themselves orderly. Or maybe that’s my way of justifying how many there are… if I put them in neat boxes, they don’t look so numerous.

What do you conjure up in your mind when I say guilty pleasures? When I first read this prompt, I was worried I didn’t have any true guilty pleasures. I’m not a very hedonistic or indulgent person. A guilty pleasure by definition is something you enjoy or indulge in but would rather keep secret because it’s not generally held in high regard. A guilty pleasure makes you feel guilty! Obvious, but what could I really say I felt bad about enjoying?!

All of a sudden this simple prompt had me all contemplative and soul-searching! Where did that come from?? To avoid listing off things like chocolate or coffee, I took a few days to think about what my guilty pleasures were. Here’s what I came up with.

Things That Make Me Feel Pretty

  1. Brazilian Waxes: I got my first wax a month before my wedding because 1) I thought that’s just what you were supposed to do and 2) I knew it would help me feel more confident. Shaving crevices of the body that you can’t see is difficult and uncomfortable. Some people would argue that waxing is infinitely more uncomfortable, but you must be going to the wrong lady! My first waxing technician should be famous for making the process of ripping hair off your vulva surprisingly thrilling. She had the whole experience down to a science and it was finished in 5 minutes. Every time I left I felt sexier, cleaner, and forgot about the pain entirely. That may be because all the blood in my body rushed away from my brain to find the source of injury, but who cares?! I loved it. Now I’m hooked. Guilt factor: 6/10 because it’s not something I rush to mention in conversation and it can be very expensive. I don’t spend close to that much on any other beauty routine.
  2. LipSense lip color: I saw a video of a friend wiping her hand all over her bright red lips, and her lipstick DIDN’T MOVE at all. It’s magical. I vowed to try it as soon as I got a job (probably not a wise purchase while volunteering with Mercy Ships). I got my hands on a tube and it’s true! It doesn’t smudge or fade for hours and it’s very comfortable. I should mention that it tastes like a shot of tequila and takes 6 months of training to learn how to apply correctly, but I still love it. I get to have bright beautiful lips without checking a mirror every hour to reapply. Guilt factor: 8/10 because these tubes are also a bit pricey and completely vain. However, I combat this guilt by really enjoying the few colors I have instead of buying more and by wearing it every waking moment of every day to convince myself it’s worthwhile.

Things That Taste Good

  1. Flavored Coffee Creamer: Why the creamer and not the coffee itself? Well, coffee alone isn’t bad for you and, in my case it has a purpose: to keep me alive through 12-hour night shifts (although I consume it in large quantities even when I’m off so…) But the creamer makes me even happier. I see it as a pointless expense because I could just use milk and sugar. But it just makes me enjoy that cup sooooo much more. Guilt factor: 4/10 because it’s not too expensive and it’s nothing to be ashamed of. However, I do drink a LOT of it.
  2. Wine (specifically when I’m home alone): I rarely drink wine at home. When I do, I feel like a grown-up. It makes me want to bust out a “MWAHAHAHAAA” evil laugh because my husband can’t discourage me from drinking the whole bottle. Not that I’d ever do that. A little part of my brain kicks in telling me to go call a friend or find something outside the house to do. However, by the time the wine is poured, I’m ignoring that little voice, and therefore this gets a guilt factor of 6/10 for staying in and being so excited over wine.

Things That Fascinate Me

This category could be split into two groups, but they’re all kind of  related so I just decided to stick them together. Here is where I have trouble explaining… because, like, WHY do I like looking at these things so much???

  • Fresh newborn photos, and I mean FRESH. Vernix, coneheads, sweat and blood.
  • Clitoris artwork
  • Photos or paintings of breastfeeding mamas
  • Makeup videos on YouTube, even though all I wear is foundation, mascara and LipSense.

So. I am aware that makeup and clitoral artwork are very different. Hear me out. In general, I tend to gravitate towards anything that reveals the strength and beauty of woman. I think the whole planet would be a better place if everyone respected women as the sacred, powerful vessels of life that we are. I wish there was less judgement towards each other and that the female body didn’t make so many people uncomfortable. Guilt factor: 9/10 because I haven’t found a way to explain this one away other than pure weirdness on my part. Childbirth, the female reproductive system AND it’s accompanying genitalia are just. so. cool.

Things That Keep Me Busy

  1. Stickers: My Bullet Journal keeps me organized and focused, but buying pretty stickers to decorate it’s pages is a guilty pleasure of mine. It’s just fun, pretty, and makes me feel like I’m indulging for only $1 a sheet. Guilt factor: 4/10 because stickers are the most pointless product ever, but they’re SO FUN.
  2. Glass Jars and Natural Ingredients: Ever since I got back from Benin (during my time with Mercy Ships) I’ve been slowly learning more about and taking action steps toward a more sustainable lifestyle. The biggest part of that is using less plastic. Plastic is toxic to produce, not always recycled correctly, and makes up the majority of single-use items. I refuse plastic bags often and I’ve started making my own body care items to cut down on single-use plastic containers (like empty tubes of toothpaste). Buying glass jars from the thrift store to fill with bulk products has been a growing obsession. Guilt factor: 4/10 because I worry this is just a phase for me, not because I feel guilty about doing it. I only feel a guilty for using this as an excuse to buy pretty glass jars and expensive natural oils and butters.

Meet Your 2018 Love Blog Challenge Hosts

Ivanna is a registered nurse who loves expressing her creative side. She enjoys thrifting, learning about sustainable living, and anything purple. She writes on Provocative Joy about living unconventionally, and loves to inspire people to realize their potential to be world-changers.

Ivanna’s Links


Brita Long is the pink and sparkly personality behind the Christian feminist lifestyle blog, Belle Brita. While her first love will always be Paris, she lives happily with her husband Daniel Fleck in the Atlanta area.

Brita’s Links


Laura is a big dreamer, full time marketing manager, blogger, and part-time artist. She aspires to inspire people in their everyday lives and help them to live towards their dreams and making the most out of every day by sharing her own experiences and stories. Her blog, Do Five Things A Day, offers an eclectic mix of excitement, passion, and a story to tell of self-discovery, development and love. She focuses on topics about taking care of yourself, and learning to find beauty and light in every moment and adventure life has to bring us. Laura’s goals this year are to launch her Life Coaching program and to finish her novel.

Laura’s Links


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9 comments on “7 Guilty Pleasures That I’m (Mostly) Not Ashamed Of”

  1. This post clearly indicates that I am old fashioned. Or just old? Or maybe I still believe that private parts should remain private. I love reading your blogs but I was not prepared for the graphic image that stays in my mind of your Brazilian waxing or your interest in C-art! I wish I had skipped this post! You are such a unique character! That’s polite mommy talk for you are so weird! Where did you get that from? I can blame your father! I still love you and am very proud of you!

    • Hi Mami! So sorry for those images in your mind. But I’m so glad you read my blog anyway and yes, I blame my father too! I can’t even handle my own weirdness sometimes.

  2. I love your list and your honesty! Your ranking system cracks me up. Also I know so many people who love LipSense. There’s nothing wrong with splurging on something that makes you feel good! I haven’t tried it because I wear makeup so rarely that I don’t think the system would work for me. But I know women who LOVE it.

    I’m definitely interested in a more sustainable lifestyle although there’s a lot I haven’t figured out how to do. Like meat. Is there a sanitary way to wrap fresh meat at the grocery store other than the plastic bags? For regular shopping bags, we have reusable ones, but I still want all the meat in plastic bags because their outer packaging has often touched raw meat or surfaces with raw meat.

    Or string cheese. I love string cheese, but I only need the individual wrapping when I pack a lunch or snack. I haven’t found anything comparable in a non-individual size.

    These are the things I think about… Pretty much all my plastic questions are about food, actually.

    • Hi Brita! I may have found a drugstore lipstick that takes the place of my LipSense obsession. I’m still in the testing phase. I agree with your assessment on LipSense though. You’re not missing out on too much.

      I have some of those same food questions if not more! I am at the beginning of this sustainability journey and have so much to learn. Thanks for your comment!

    • I am not going to pretend it’s not painful, but it’s certainly bearable. I have a moderate threshold for pain but the good part is that if you go to the right technician, it’s very quick!

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