F-It Fridays: Your Weekly Dose of Retail Therapy (Casual AF to Causal Chic Edition)

Me with Heidi Nazarudin of The Ambitionista Photo by Sabrina Hill. 

Me with Heidi Nazarudin of The Ambitionista Photo by Sabrina Hill

I know I’ve written a lot about rompers and it’s because I’m obsessed with them. I thought for this F-it Friday, I’d share one of my favorite new ones with you and how to create an entire outfit around it. You know, taking the romper from I- romped-around-until-4-in-the-moring-and-just-woke-up-so-I’m-casual-AF to Casual Chic.

So, I am not normally an American Eagle shopper. In fact, I can’t even tell you where one is. But, I was half asleep and very likely drunk on Instagram when I saw this one someone’s post. I wish I could remember whose account it was, but I don’t. I had to have it. Luckily, I didn’t even have to get out of bed to grab a credit card and buy it (which probably wasn’t going to happen anyway) because it turns out AE takes Paypal. Yay! It’s been one of my favorite pieces ever since. And it’s currently on sale

Here are some ideas to dress up and accessorize this romper or any romper.

 

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I love a classic Jack Rogers Sandal or if you need a little height, a wedge

Throw on a jean jacket, especially if you are wearing a romper at night. I love this one from Madewell. Everyone should have a classic jean jacket in their wardrobe. If you don’t have one, I can’t imagine how you stay warm on breezy summer nights or when some annoying person blasts the AC. 

Add a fun with a tote like this one from Draper James. I love this straw bag for summer. It’s causal, but put together. Because it’s roomy and more importantly lined, you can actually put things in it that aren’t your wallet, keys and half a lip gloss. I would even use it as a carry-on bag for a beach vacay. 

Consider a tassel fob to look extra put together. Nothing says, “I actually care about details,” more than this tiny accessory.

Because rompers are causal, a little jewelry will let others know you didn’t just roll out of bed, even if you did. I like a turquoise necklace for the summer, particularly this Judith Ripka Baguette Doublet Pendant Necklace

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Always have a bangle on your wrist. Kate Spade’s Feather Bangle coordinates well.

Have a great weekend! And don’t forget, F-it, it’s Friday, so buy yourself a present for getting through the week!

 

Things We're Too Lazy To Blog About Podcast: Bad Malls & Fast Fashion

In episode two, Ali and Amanda talk about malls, the good the bad and the ones that desperately need to be bulldozed. Growing up in NYC (Amanda) and the suburbs (Ali), shopping anxiety, NYC Bloomingdales, strange SoCal chain stores, and our shared love of The Caruso Family (not the actor David Caruso). They also dish on fast fashion, H&M, Zara, Forever 21 (FOREVER), dressing room disasters with our moms, clothing care tips and velvet hangers. Ali spills some secrets about working with Lisa Vanderpump, not spending money on trends, fake vs faux, and so much more.

Don’t forget, you can earn extra karma points by listening, subscribing and by leaving us a five star review on iTunes. But obvs, you can also listen below. 

By the way, after the episode was recorded, Amanda saw some of the renovations at the Beverly Center and they were awful. It’s still the third realm of Hell.

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So Last Week... Things I Read That Are Totally Worth Your Time (Semi Self Promo Edition)

Happy Sunday! If you didn’t know (and you should, but I’m not going to make you feel bad about it), Ali Levine and I launched a podcast last week. Please listen, subscribe on iTunes and leave us a five star review for extra karma points. You can also like us on Facebook because who doesn’t want to be liked? 

If you are new to So Last Week, it's a weekly(ish) round up of things I read on the Internet that are totally worth your time. You're busy. I'm busy! We're all crazed! I get it. But, I promise after reading any one of these posts, you will NOT say, "There's 3.5 minutes of my life I'll never get back." Enjoy! 

Dope + Broke: 10 Top Bloggers And Podcast Hosts' Favorite Affordable Shopping Websites

The title pretty much says it all. I cannot thank Dope + Broke enough for featuring both Ali and I in this post along with some really awesome women including Gabi Gregg, Annabelle Desisto and Jackie Schimmel.

Ali Levine: Trends Tuesday

Ali Levine shows off a trendy denim look featuring one of my fav designers, Diane Gilman. Also, I am stealing that jacket next time I’m at your house,

A Beautiful Mess: Braided Wavy Boho Hair Tutorial

ABM shows you how to create a beautiful do that anyone can do! It’s seriously not hard, but worthy of 1000 likes on Insta. Love this look for summer!

Racked: The Ultimate Guide To Bathing Suit Shopping Online

It’s almost that time of year again! No matter what size you are or what your style is, Racked has your boobs and booty covered.

The List: Beauty Advice We Wish We Would Have Taken

I gathered the best beauty advice from celebs, influencers and even doctors for this article on The List. Yes, it’s a little self-promotional, but I can’t promote my own work, then who will?

Balance Blends: A Line Of Supplements Created By An Actual Person

This post is sponsored by Balance Blends.

Let’s talk about vitamins and supplements for a minute. Does anyone else feel completely confused buying them? I feel like you never really know what you are buying. Where did it come from? Is the product safe? Who chose the ingredients? Is this worth the price? Most importantly, does the product actually do what the label says it will? Or am I just overthinking about this? In all fairness, let’s say all of the above.

That’s exactly why I’m obsessed with Balance Blends, which is a line of supplements containing a blend (hence the name), of vitamins and herbs personally formulated by Colette Widrin, L.Ac., MTOM*. Colette is a holistic practitioner in Beverly Hills and Malibu, who has been making bespoke supplements for the rich and unbalanced for years (and maybe even Real Housewives, but obviously she can’t tell).

The ingredients in Balance Blends are hand chosen by Colette herself, as opposed to a nameless cog in a large corporate wheel. These formulas are affective in treating a variety of health issues. We will get to what those are in just a minute.

All of the herbs have been sourced from wholesalers who are compliant with the Food and Drug Administration’s Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) as well as the Natural Product Association (NPA), using third-party quality control. Everything is triple-tested for safety and authentic. The capsules are 100% natural, and free of GMO starch, gluten and chemicals. On a side note, who would think those things are okay to put in a nutritional supplement anyway?

If you have a medical condition, are pregnant or taking any prescriptions, be smart and consult your physician before integrating supplements into your routine. But, you’re smart, so you probably knew that already.

Let’s take a look at the blends.

Just Breathe

I feel like if there were one Balance Blends product that everyone needs, it’s this. Just Breathe (which is a good idea, always breathe), releases stress, moves Qi and helps you relax. I like to take this before bed to wake up feeling peaceful and ready to start the day.

Quiet Please

If Just Breathe isn’t enough to just knock you out, Quiet Please could be exactly what you need. This formula stops your mind from racing (doesn’t that always happen when you can’t fall asleep? So annoying, right?), promotes deep sleep and nourishes the blood.

Acne Be Gone

When you are breaking out, all you need to do is go to the mirror and say, “Acne be gone” to yourself five times. Just kidding! If your breakouts can’t be controlled with topical creams, it’s probably time to nourish your skin from outside in. Acne Be Gone clears and prevents acne-causing toxins from ruining your skin and probably your day, possibly your life.

Cramp Whisperer

Speaking of breakouts, let’s talk about another awful side affect of PMS, cramps. Cramps cramp up your body and usually at least one week of your life. Cramp Whisperer whispers to your cramps to go away (and perhaps bother that annoying co-worker instead, she totally deserves cramps), nourishes your blood and reduces spasms to restore balance in your body, life, etc. 

Force Field

If you feel illness coming on, you probably pop a Vitamin C or Echinacea, but we all know that doesn’t really cut it. That’s why you need Force Field. Think of this blend as a personal trainer for your immune system, strengthening your body’s natural defenses, lifting Qi and restoring balance.

For more info or to purchase, please visit Balance Blends and use Code Amanda30 for 30% off through June 10, 2017.

* Licensed acupuncturist, Master, of Traditional Oriental Medicine, if you were wondering. And I know you were.

 

Things We're Too Lazy To Blog About: My Podcast With Ali Levine

Welcome to the debut episode of Things We're Too Lazy To Blog About with Ali Levine & Amanda Lauren. If you are wondering where you can get this on iTunes, the answer is you can't at the moment. It's not because we're trying to be exclusive, it's because we are still waiting for an actual human at Apple to approve the podcast. This is more annoying than a publicist who can't find your name on a guest list. But, hopefully it should be up within the next few days (possibly hours). However, all you have to do is click the play button to listen. It will even work on your phone. Thank you so much for being patient and we get it, this is totally annoying.

UPDATE: We're on iTunes, so subscribe and write a review. 5 stars please! 

In the first episode, celebrity stylist Ali Levine and I discuss why we created the podcast, first world problems such as why I can't find organic kale anywhere (not even a joke), and how to get dressed in Los Angeles (aka Ali tells us what to wear because she is an authority), which is essentially a long-form explanation of why everyone here looks like a Kardashian.

We want this to be an interactive experience, so please let us know what you want us to talk about or share your feedback by emailing ThingsWereTooLazyToBlogAbout [at] gmail dot com. If email isn't your thing (or even if it is), you can also discuss your feelings publicly on our Facebook Page or just like us because you think what we are doing is awesome. 

So Last Week... All Self-Promotion Edition

I'm interupting your semi-regularly scheduled So Last Week to bring you some very exciting news. So, if you're looking for me to share my fav links of the week, sorry, but I'm taking this full-on narcissist style to announce my newest project, which is a podcast with Ali Levine called Things We're Too Lazy To Blog About. The title is pretty self-explanatory. Every week, Ali and I are going to dish on our major first world problems (spoiler alert: lack of organic kale, why drugstore hauls are impossible for me, and bad malls) as well as blog-worthy topics that would take way too much effort to delve into with words.

Last week, Ali and I had our makeup done at Blushington in Topanga to announce our collab live on social media.

If you aren't familiar with Ali, she is a stylist, television personality, and one of my closest friends. She also blogs and offers styling services to celebs as well as regular people.

The first episode will debut May 8th. We don't have an iTunes link at the moment because it takes a few days for Apple to approve the podcast, (hopefully just a few days- fingers crossed), but there will be links here and on our Facebook page. We are so excited about this podcast and want to make you a part of it. Let us know what topics we should cover and email your requests to ThingsWereTooLazyToBlogAbout [at] gmail dot com. (I know the way I just wrote that out is totally annoying, but are constant spam emails about penis enlargement). 

 

Dressing Like The Stars: Met Gala 2017 Edition

Save up to 60% off on Markdowns at Halston

The annual Met Gala in New York is a fundraiser for the museum’s Costume Institute aka the fashion exhibits. It’s one of the most important fashion events, if not the most important fashion event on the East Coast. This year, the theme for the event was Rei Kawakubo/Comme des Garçons: Art of the In-Between, which honored the designer and founder of the label.

Several of attendees this year really honored the theme, forgoing avant garde outfits and opting for more classic pieces instead. Here are some of my favorite looks from the night along with similar dresses that you don’t have to be a celeb to pull off or pay for. 

Gwyneth Paltrow

Gwyneth Paltrow looked pretty in a pink Calvin Klein dress. Copy the cut, but in a more universally flattering color in Halston Heritage

Zoey Deutch

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Zoey Deutch wore an absolutely stunning Tory Burch dress. White House Black Market has an interesting version of it, that's a little more boho inspired and causal.

Kendall Jenner

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Kendall Jenner definitely outshined her sisters in a La Perla dress made entirely of crystals. Missguided’s Glitter Fishnet Overlay Slip takes two of the most important elements of Kendall’s dress, the shimmer and texture, making it perfect for less formal and more fun occasions. 

Gisele

Gisele shined in a silver beaded cutout dress by Stella McCartney. Sharing a similar va va voom vibe, this cutout sequined stretch jersey gown by Halston Heritage won’t score you Tom Brady, but make you will feel like a supermodel. 

Candice Swanepoel

Candice Swanepoel’s TopShop dress was my favorite look of the event. Obviously, I checked TopShop to see if the dress was available and it’s safe to say, the gown was custom. Seriously, TopShop, can you please release this dress to us non-model shoppers?  Luckily, Amanda Uprichard saves the day with her black sweetheart neckline dress, which shares a similar classic elegance. Who doesn't need another little black dress in their wardrobe?

Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen

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I will try not to comment or judge adult twins who still dress alike. I will try really hard. Okay, I just failed, but no one does boho quite like the Olsen twins do. In lace dresses that were accessorized in a way that can only be described as eclectic, they still rocked the white carpet, even if it does seem a little bit absurd (I'm being kind here). Say "I do" with TopShop’s Bride Bardot lace off the shoulder gown, which shares the Olsen's chill boho vibe with layers and bell sleeves. 

Elizabeth Banks

It was hard not to check out Elizabeth Banks in her Michael Kors checkerboard dress. While this is not a regular Elizabeth Banks look, I thought it was a fun and interesting choice.  Donna Rae New York’s halter dress has a similar print but no one will try to hail you 50 years ago. 

Kim Kardashian  

Kim Kardashian looked beautiful, but this Vivienne Westwood gown was the last thing everyone was expecting her to wear. It’s a mature new look. DKNY makes a similar white off the shoulder dress. However, just because Kim can get away without accessorizing doesn’t mean you can. This dress is just begging for a statement necklace or bold earrings. 

From Post-Workout Triage To Actually Making An Effort: Best of Gym Bag Beauty

Hurray for honesty. Also this cute gym bag by Ban.do.

Hurray for honesty. Also this cute gym bag by Ban.do.

I wrote an article for A Sweat Life featuring my favorite post-gym beauty products. So, if you're stinky, sweaty and have a tendency to break out after you workout (no judgements, but obvs you want that to stop, right?), head on over to A Sweat Life.

So Last Week... Things I Read That Are Totally Worth Your Time

Whether you are having a Sunday Funday or ending a chill weekend, here are a few links to check out before Monday comes. You might think these are so last week, but they’re totally worth your time.

The Skinny Confidential Him & Her Podcast: Alli Webb & Cameron Webb, Founders and Creators of Drybar 

I feel like I’m late to the game with The Skinny Confidential, but it’s one of my new favorite blogs and podcasts. I love this new episode with the founders and creators of DryBar because it really delves into the nitty gritty of turning an idea into a business and making your dreams come true.

Fit Fab Well By Chanel

If you are the kind of person who eats chia seeds on the regular and can properly pronounce cacao, my friend Chanel Gold Kenner’s Instagram will be your newest obsession.

Fashionista: Nasty Gal Founder Sophia Amoruso Gave the 'Girl Boss' Costume Designer A Tour Of Her Own Closet

Have you been watching Girlboss on Netflix? Here is some behind the scenes info about the wardrobe on the show, including the iconic jacket that started it all.

Man Repeller: 10 Things I Learned About Leandra From Her Vogue Closet Tour

I think I learned at least 11, possibly 12 things from this post. But seriously, I wish I could shop in Leandra Medine’s closet.

Southern Curls & Pearls: 5 Tips for Feeling Fresh While You're Traveling

Good to know I’m not the only person who feels icky when they travel. Southern Curls & Pearls shares some tips for de-grossifying yourself on the road. 

Slumber Party Series Part Three: Sheets, Duvets & A Giveaway

Happy National Sleep Awareness Week and welcome to part three of the Slumber Party series! This installment is all about my favorite duvets and sheets. But first, a giveaway!

I’ve teamed up with Slumbr, which is a company that makes the most amazing pillows (they make you relax faster than a valium and champagne) and Poéthique, which is an eco-luxe brand of 100% plant-based skincare products. 

Everything you need to know is on Instagram. Good luck. You can also click here for the official rules and other things the law requires me to post, etc.

Now let’s get the party started on bedding. I’m a duvet girl and down insert (aka down comforter) kind of girl. I know some people like regular comforters and no duvet, but I don’t. Sorry. If you enjoy a good comforter vs duvet debate, there’s a great post on Apartment Therapy.

Also, I know there are alternatives to down, but for me, there is no alternative. Would you rather drift off to sleep in a comfy cloud of down or sandwiched between clumps of cotton/polyester fill? Didn’t think so. Down is just so lux. Furthermore, a decent down comforter will last you forever. I took my parents’ old one with me to college and I still use it for guests to this day. Honestly, it's probably like 15 years old at this point. So buy the real thing. It's worth it. 

Here are some of my favorite duvets along with sheet suggestions for maximum style and comfort.

Dwell Studio Chinoserie Duvet

If you couldn’t tell from the picture above with my dogs, I love my Dwell Studio Chinoserie Duvet. It’s soft, stylish and looks good with any style of bed or headboard. As they say in Portlandia, put a bird on it

Marimekko Kesahelle Sheets

While I’m normally not a fan of mixing patterns, I really like the way Marimekko’s Keashelle sheets coordinate with the Dwell Studio duvet. The stripes contrast the birds without getting too busy.

Missoni Patrick Duvet

Missoni bedding is kind of my dream. It’s Italian (omg, do you feel a Dresses to Decor coming on, I know I do!) and impossible to mistake for anything else. The Patrick Duvet provides a great focal point for a room, especially if you have simple bedroom furniture. 

Sky 500 Thread Count Sheet Set

If you’re going to have a Missoni duvet, you can’t go crazy with patterned sheets unless you want to give the person you are sleeping with a seizure. Sky’s 500 Thread Count Sheets are available in two perfect colors to work with the Missoni Duvet, which are orange (I get it, not for everyone) and lavender (the safer choice). 

Anthropologie Georgina Duvet

Anthropologie’s Georgina Duvet is like that person who walks into the party and everyone stares and gasps at their beauty. An interesting update of the Shabby Chic style, it is available in white and cream as well as the muted blue color that is pictured. 

Anthropologie Embroidered Sateen Sheet Set

With a classic scalloped edge, Anthropologie’s Embroidered Sateen Sheet Set is the perfect compliment to balance the Georgia Duvet. Remember, no one wants to get busy in a bed that looks too busy. 

Anthropologie Tolouse Duvet

The Toulouse Duvet by Anthropologie is what you choose if the person you are sharing your bed with thinks the Georgina is too feminine for their taste. A little more muted and modern, it has just enough ruffle going on. 

Sweet Home Collection 1800 Thread Count Sheets

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Dark on dark starts to look goth. Don’t be a downer. The crisp mint color of these shockingly affordable 1800 thread count sheets from Sweet Home Collection is a fresh compliment to the dark Tolouse Duvet.

Serena & Lilly Cherry Duvet

Serena & Lilly’s Cherry duvet is technically kids bedding (so it’s only available in twin and full/queen sizes, boo), but it was too cute not to include in this roundup. What adult wouldn’t love these cheery cherries?  I die for this to dress up a guest room. 

Comphy Sheets

Sometimes, less is more. I think if you are going to use a fun fruit print duvet, plain white sheets are best. And I found the most comfortable ones are from a brand called Comphy. I swear, I can’t make this up.

I discovered these sheets when I was getting acupuncture from Colette Widrin at Askeo Theraputics last week. She had the softest sheets on her table. I was literally never so comfortable having someone insert needles into me. Comphy sheets are made from magic, clouds and microfiber from heaven. 

F-it Fridays: Activewear You'll Get Off The Couch For

This photo was taken by Hayley Fisk at dr pilates, which is my favorite studio in Los Angeles. I love dr because it's small and boutique, so every class feels like a private session. The instructors are fun and give you an intense workout (hardcore = a hard core), but also know how to make adjustments for people at various levels. If you are in Larchmont Village, you need to stop by and take a class. If you are not in Larchmont Village, it's totally worth dealing with the traffic. I feel like very few things in Los Angeles are actually worth the traffic, so that's saying a lot!

This photo was taken by Hayley Fisk at dr pilates, which is my favorite studio in Los Angeles. I love dr because it's small and boutique, so every class feels like a private session. The instructors are fun and give you an intense workout (hardcore = a hard core), but also know how to make adjustments for people at various levels. If you are in Larchmont Village, you need to stop by and take a class. If you are not in Larchmont Village, it's totally worth dealing with the traffic. I feel like very few things in Los Angeles are actually worth the traffic, so that's saying a lot!

There are so many ways to motivate yourself to workout. Some people buy fitness trackers or join Facebook groups. Others watch The Biggest Loser to make themselves skip dessert (I feel this way about Hoarders and cleaning). But, my favorite way to motivate is buying stylish activewear. After all, who doesn't like wearing a new outfit? If you don't, I feel sorry for you. 

So I guess this F-it Friday is also Fit Friday! If you've worked out a lot this week (or even if you haven't, no judgements), you deserve a calorie-free treat! F-it and buy yourself something nice. Here are some of my favorite activewear pieces to get you off the couch and onto the reformer (or spin bike, or treadmill, or insert your favorite piece of fitness equipment here). 

DG LUXSPORT Leggings & Tank

Back in March (which wasn't that long ago, really), I  collabed with Kinx Active, which is an activewear makeup line, on a photoshoot. Several of my outfits were from Diane Gilman. If you haven't heard of her, she's dressed some of the most iconic rock stars in the world including Janis Joplin and Cher.

The comfort waist leggings are available in two different flower prints, which as you know is a huge trend this spring and not going away any time soon. (So, if you don't like flower prints, you're kind of SOL for a while because they are EVERYWHERE.) The matching tank is also available in several colors. 

Michi Dive Rash Guard Crop Top (Yes, I have no idea what's going on with the name either)

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I love this crop top by Michi. It's literally one of the sexiest pieces of activewear I've ever seen. Wear it to barre and channel your inner badass ballerina with literally any pair of leggings. 

Alo Yoga Epic Leggings

Although they are white, you can totally wear Alo Yoga’s Epic Leggings before Memorial Day.  After all, they do live up to their name. Perfect for cardio activities, even if you don't workout your hardest, at the very least, your style will be epic. 

Calvin Klein Modern Cotton Bralette

The Modern Cotton Collection Bralette by Calvin Klein is retro chic. Wear it under a black tank and let the logos show or alone (but obvs with pants or shorts because you don’t want to be creepy) during an extra hot hot yoga session. If you were wondering, I have this bra and it’s more supportive than it looks. 

Body Language Aven Pullover

I love this pullover by Body Language. First of all, it will look super cute any of the pieces featured in this post. I also really like it because it’s lightweight for those times when you don’t want to freeze, but you know a big, thick sweatshirt is going to be too warm.

Forever 21 Active Slashed Leggings

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Everyone loves a deal and these Forever 21 Active Slashed Leggings cost less than a Flywheel class. I'd seriously consider buying these in bulk. 

ban.do Water Bottle

This ban.do water bottle isn't technically clothing, but we all know how not stylish dehydration is. I love this bottle for its sheer honesty! 

BooHoo Keira Metallic Contrast Weekend Gym Bag

Say yay for this gym/weekender bag by BooHoo! Made of synthetic materials, it's the chicest place to throw your stinky grippy socks and that leaky bottle of green juice you didn't close properly. 

Around The World In 80(ish) Products: Global Beauty In Italy

Welcome to Around The World In 80(ish) Products, an ongoing series where I will explore the best in international beauty. The idea for this series started in 2016 when I wrote about K-Beauty. While I try not to obsess over my analytics, I’m always surprised to see how much traction that post still gets. Obviously, K-Beauty is a huge trend right now, but I think that globalization and the Internet in general have made us more interested in international beauty products now more than ever.

After all, I know when ever I visit another country, I love to go to a local drugstore or department store and buy things that are likely better, but at the very least more interesting than what is available back home. But, the truth is that you don’t need to go abroad to buy international products. So many are available at brick and mortar stores in the US as well as online.

So, bellas, let’s take a trip to Italy. Or just talk about my favorite Italian products. 

Jolii

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Jolii is a new Italian cosmetics line that has answered a question many of us have asked for years, which is“Can you please take the gloss out of my lip gloss?” The answer is yes. Jolii Luxe Crème Mattes apply exactly their glossy sisters, but they last longer than an iPhone battery and are sexier than a super model in a tight Gucci dress. But because so many matte formulas leave your pout feeling dry as a box of pasta, Jolii is formulated with both shea butter and jojoba oil to keep your lips as moist as the cream inside a cannoli. Jolii’s color selection is also very unique (clearly these people think outside the lipstick box) with deep shades of red, purple, brown and orange.

Armani Beauty

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I first tried Armani Beauty is at the least glamorous place on earth, which is the Beverly Center mall in Los Angeles. Without getting into too much detail, this mall is the exact opposite of the Sistine Chapel. I was scheduled to do a photoshoot for MRKT Handbags that day, but could not find an available makeup artist all week. Being the resourceful person I am, I figured there would be tons of people at Bloomingdales who would want to do my makeup and in return, I’d buy lots of products. But I guess I was wrong because the cosmetics section was a ghost town at 11:00am on a Saturday. The whole thing was so bizarre, but clearly it was destiny because the only counter where someone was actually working was Armani Beauty.

It was there when I was introduced to Maestro Fusion Makeup, which I’m pretty sure is a product I will use for the rest of my life. Maestro is not like any other foundation I’ve ever used. It has a very unique texture, almost like a liquid powder. Just a few drops are needed. The bottle has a built-in dropper, which dispenses the perfect amount. Then, you blend it in with your fingers (no blender or spongie thing necessary) and it disappears into your skin like magic. It’s hard to say a foundation can change your life, but this one might be the exception to the rule.

Terax

Terax is a true Italian brand. Founded nearly 50 years ago in Bologna, Italy, the company is still family owned and operated.  My favorite Terax product is the Crema Conditioner. As a not so natural blond with dry AF hair, Crema has taken up valuable real estate in my bathtub on and off since middle school. The brand disappeared from shelves for a while and was re-launched in 2016. I recently started using it again and I feel like I’m in love with my conditioner. Crema is super creamy (hence the name) and really penetrates into the hair to restore moisture. Leave it on overnight once a week and you can skip your regular hair mask.

Davines

 

Before I started using their products, I always found Davines in the showers of the most sophisticated people I know. Yes, I’m that guest who uses your fancy shampoo. Davines, which is pronounced dav-vin-ess, was founded in 1983 in Parma Italy. The brand focuses on creating artisanal and sustainable products for both hair and body. Their hair care line is quite extensive and includes shampoos, treatments, and styling products for every hair type you can and cannot think of. Every single product smells like heaven and has a cool name such as Oi, Volu, Nonu, Dede as well as other names I’m incapable of figuring out how to pronounce. My favorite Davines product is the Love Shampoo for curly or wavy hair. It’s the only shampoo specifically made for curly hair that I (you guessed it) love. It’s also the easiest to pronounce. 

Kiko Milano

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Kiko Milano is the best affordable Italian makeup you’re not wearing (yet). With over 1000 stores in 20 countries, they aren’t quite that big in the US, yet. But give Kiko some time. After opening up their first location in 1997, the company only expanded to the US in 2014. Considering their first stores in this country were in New Jersey and Staten Island, which are not exactly centers of emerging cosmetic trends, this brand has yet to break the Internet. But, when I visited their store at Hollywood and Highland (which is essentially the Hollywood version of the Fresh Kills Landfill), I was very impressed. With over 1,400 products, I like that Kiko is a one-stop shop with literally everything including makeup, brushes, skincare, nails, etc.

This year, the brand celebrates its 20th anniversary with a variety of limited lines. Check out the Tropic Heat capsule collection for some spring/summer/vacay/you-live-in-a-warm-climate-so-seasons-are-really-irrelevant-anyway inspiration

 

 

F-It Fridays: Hopping Into Spring With Flower Print Accessories

One of the biggest trends this season is flower prints. There are so many things I love about this. First off all, flower prints are an instant mood booster. Seriously, it's hard to be sad if you're wearing sunshine. But I totally get a full on flower print dress or romper isn't for everyone. That's why you've got to accessorize. Here are some of my favorite flower print accessories of the season. So, as I always say, F-it, it's Friday, buy yourself something pretty.

Trina Turk Desert Oasis Clutch

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The good thing about Trina Turk's Desert Oasis Clutch is that it's really unique. The bad thing about it is that pictures don't quite do it justice. I took a look at it in person at Trina's new boutique in my neighborhood and was so wowed. Made of vinyl, the style of this bag is very vintage, as if you bought it from a Palm Springs consignment shop. I feel like this is something you could pull out every spring and summer for the rest of your life. 

J. Renée Alawna Wedge Sandal

No white shoes before Memorial Day is a rule no more with these cute wedge sandals by J. Renée. Super affordable priced under $100, the print is the epitome of spring. 

Gucci Printed Coated Canvas Continental Wallet & Pursuit Slides

So, these are not technically matching, but with similar prints, how could you not want to pair these Gucci slides and wallet together? Much like you and your BFF who might not like Real Housewives, but you love her anyway, these two just go together. And you shouldn't feel any guilt about going double Gucci because the wallet is really large enough to use as a clutch. Wear them together with a cute sundress or even to lux up simple shorts and a t-shirt. 

Draper James Peabody Perforated Tote

If you like flowers, but aren't into prints, this tote from Reese Witherspoon's boutique Draper James, will have y'all covered. It's the perfect size and style for a spring day. And yes, it comes with that adorable key fob.

Sonix Primrose iPhone Case

Hello! Why shouldn't you dress up your phone for the new season? Make your smart phone even smarter with this on point case from Sonix.

Dolce & Gabbana Cat-Eye Floral Print Sunglasses

I can't with these Dolce & Gabbana Cat-Eye Floral Print Sunglasses. They are too cute for words. I can't even imagine how awesome they're going to look with swimwear this summer. Be a lolita and not a cougar with these cat eyes!

Ted Baker Suitcase

Airports are generally the least chic places on earth. Actually, that's not true. Heathrow is pretty darn stylish. Do you know what Heathrow and Ted Baker have in common? They're both British! Coincidence, I think not. This flower print luggage from Ted Baker is really special. It will also be super easy to recognize in baggage claim.  But obviously, people will want to steal it, so if you purchase, please pay close attention. 

Balenciaga Knife Flower Print Booties

Flower prints are generally more cute than sexy, but these Balenciaga boots are simply bangin'. Made of leather, you need to step into these right now. With a heal that high, they aren't made for walking, but who cares?

How To Wear Makeup To The Gym Without Scaring Small Children & Animals

Fab Fit Fun

Want to wear makeup to the gym and not scare small children and animals after you sweat? I swear it's totally possible. I reveal all of my gym makeup secrets and favorite products for A Sweat Life. Click on over and check it out. 

Everything You Need To Know About Female Face Shaving

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Fab Fit Fun

Face shaving for women might like the latest skincare trend du jour, but it's actually a great way to get your glow on. Still not ready to take a razor to your face? It turns out female face shaving isn't exactly what you think. I spoke with several experts on this topic for an article published by The List. So, click on over. Unless you want razor burn.

How To Be A Blonde Bombshell & Fight Brass With Sass

Photo by Hayley Fisk. Makeup by Kinx Active.

Photo by Hayley Fisk. Makeup by Kinx Active.

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When I was a little girl, if you asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up I would have probably said blonde. Luckily, I was able to achieve that goal by high school with a whole lot of bleach on my naturally blah brown hair. I haven’t really gone back since. (Okay, three times, but I think I’m blonde for life now.) 

But, being blonde is a commitment. It’s time consuming and expensive. In addition to not being naturally blonde, I have another huge hair problem. Left to its own devices, my hair is dry AF. It also doesn’t grow as long and gorgeous like it appears to for every other woman I know. So, my life, at least in terms of what I focus on from a vanity standpoint, has been a constant battle to achieve a presentable looking head of hair. Yes, it’s annoying, but for the first time in a long time, I think I’m having more good hair days than bad ones.

In my quest for blonde, I’ve tried EVERYTHING. If your hair is blonde, dry and annoying, you don’t have to suffer through what I did. Here are the essentials to being the best blonde you can be.

A Product Squad To Combat Brass

In college, I thought it would be fun to go strawberry blonde. It was cute, but it ruined my hair forever. Ever since, my hair wants to be red and brassy all of the time. It’s a constant battle for a brass-free head.

Beating the brass starts with purple shampoo. But be forewarned, purple shampoo is kind of a lifestyle choice. It’s powerful stuff. My shower sometimes looks like I murdered Barney the Dinosaur.  But if you’re blonde, it’s a necessity.

As you can imagine, I’ve tried ALL THE PURPLE SHAMPOOS. My personal favorite is Kevin Murphy Blonde Angel Wash. It’s doesn’t dry my hair out and the packaging prevents bathtub staining, which is a huge issue with most purple shampoos. If you need an extra purple boost, add the Blonde Angel Conditioner to your routine once a week or more.

Another option is using a toner like Dessange CC Cream. This treatment cuts brass so well, I wouldn’t trust it around a trumpet. Pro tip: actually read the directions before you use this product.

A Conditioner That Works Like A Therapist For Your Hair’s Dryness Issue

Going blonde will make anyone’s hair prone to dryness. I really like Terax Original Crema. It was all the rage in middle school, went away for a few and was recently(ish) re-launched in 2016. Crema is creamy, but doesn’t weigh my hair down. I like to leave it in for a few hours once a week for an extra moisture boost instead of using a mask.

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A Special Hair Towel

Although I love my Ralph Lauren towels to dry off my body, regular towels split your ends like a bad divorce. That’s why I use the Laguna Blue towel on my hair. Made of microfiber, it’s anti-bacterial (great if you wash your hair at the gym), eco-friendly, and most importantly (let’s be honest here) it absorbs water twice as fast as a regular towel. Seriously, it’s like the diamond lane for your hair.

Oil For Your Ends At Night

I love Kopari Coconut Sheer Oil. It’s a great multitasker you can use you on your hair, body, face, etc (just don’t eat it). I put a few drops on my palms at night and apply it to my ends before I go to bed. No need to wash off.

Sun Protection

We all use sun protection for our skin (hopefully), but we rarely think of using it for our hair. Despite what you remember from using Sun-In when you were 12, sun is actually the enemy of blonde hair. It will brass it up like a bad jazz band. But you can’t just use your face sunscreen on your hair. (If you were wondering, I tried and it didn’t end well). There are two products I really like for this purpose. One is Fekkai Pre-Soleil Hair Mist. It’s very hydrating and has a UV filter.  It also smells like heaven. If my hair is extra dry or I’m planning on getting it wet, I use Nios Shield SPF 15 Leave-In Conditioner. It’s super creamy and a little work to apply, but it will immediately take away your fear of the ocean or pool destroying your locks.

A Hat (This Is Not A Fashion Tip)

Even with product, I still think the best way to protect your hair is with a hat. I like a straw fedora because they look cute with most swimwear and clothing. These hats from Forever21 and Kate Spade are all you need.

Save up to 50% off sale items at Journelle. No code needed. Exclusions: sale price items only.

So Last Week: Ciao Manhattan/It's Getting Personal Edition

Happy(ish) Sunday! It’s time for So Last Week.

I try to keep things light here, but I didn’t have an easy weekend. I’m only deciding to write about it because I think so many lifestyle blogs are overly aspirational and lack honesty about real life. There’s a reason why I say this is a blog for people with “imperfect hair and sometimes unmade beds.” Before you think I’m about to throw myself a pity party because I’ve had a rough few days, that’s not what I want at all. I’m very well aware of how privileged and lucky I am. But sometimes, even first world problems hurt and my weekend was ruled entirely by one. On Friday, my parents moved out of the home I grew up in. I know this is part of adulthood, but it doesn’t change the fact that I feel a bit heartbroken. I’m not sure I will ever be the same.

The thing about growing up in New York is that you’re always a New Yorker no matter what. I’ve lived in Los Angeles for nine years and as Californicated as I’ve become, I’m also every cliché in articles like this one, except for the fact that I don’t like bagels or the subway. If you were wondering, I prefer croissants and Via. Being a New Yorker is almost like an option that should be listed in the race/ethnicity section on a form. It is who you are. I think only real New Yorkers can understand what I mean. But, now maybe my NY card has finally expired. I still have friends and family in the city, but no roots. All I wanted to do was mourn the loss of real estate (I know, so first world), but I couldn’t cry about this all weekend because I was afraid to cry alone. Coincidentally, everyone I love was gone this weekend.

My husband had a bachelor party in Nashville and 99% of my close girlfriends (those I can cry around) were out of town. It was really strange. I couldn’t help my emotions from creeping up. I worked out, made the bed, went food shopping and walked the dogs. Perhaps this was the longest period I’ve been by myself in over three years.

So, for two days, which felt like an eternity, I distracted myself the only way millennials know how. By disappearing into click holes and binge watching seasons of a show everyone else watches, but that I just discovered. And I’m pretty sure tonight, I’m going to mess up a whole lot of mascara to make up for it. Ciao Manhattan! I’ll miss you.

If you need to be distracted, here are some good places to start.  

The List: The Untold Truth Of Bath & Body Works

Want to know a ton of secrets about Bath & Body Works? I dish (yep, I wrote this one) everything like the TMZ of mall stores. If you’re wondering, I’m not exactly a fan of their beauty line, but I’m obsessed with Wallflowers because most plug-ins smell like a gas station.

Jovani: Celebrity Stylist Ali Levine Shares Star Style Secrets

As always, my very good friend Ali Levine delivers the goods. Also, if you haven’t read my interview with her from 2016, you should.

Byrdie: I Tried The Bizarre Lipstick Hack Jude Law's Daughter Swears By

I don’t want to spoil this, but I think this trick might just actually be life changing. I can’t wait to try it after I stop crying. So, hopefully by Wednesday.

Vogue: Your Internet Search History Will Soon Be Up for Sale—Here’s How You Can Protect Yourself

This article explains how your ISP can now make even more money off you. Awful. I know. You’re welcome.

Well+Good: Taking A Hot Bath May Be Just As Good For You As Working Out

If this is true, I’m about to hop into one right now.

Trina Turk Opens on Larchmont

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If you’re a regular reader of this blog, you probably know I live near Larchmont Village in Los Angeles and that I absolutely adore Trina Turk.  Being from the East Coast, I have a deep appreciation for prints. So, obviously, this is a label I'm obsessed with. 

When I first moved to Los Angeles from New York, I remember going to the Trina Turk store on Third Street to buy Cali appropriate clothing. However, last year the store closed without warning. I was really sad. Not kidding. I was even there for what I didn’t know was the final sale. Forced to get my Trina fix at their outlet in South Pasadena or just buy it at all of the other stores where the line is sold, I still really missed their charming Third Street location.

So, when I found out they were opening up a new boutique in my neighborhood, it was as if my wish came true. I even briefly considered asking my credit card company to increase my limit. Just kidding. Kind of…

Yay! Trina Turk is here!

Yay! Trina Turk is here!

Last night, I had the privilege of attending the opening party. It was probably the nicest store opening I’ve ever been to. There were cocktails from Jardesca and local eats from Burger Lounge and Salt and Straw ice cream. There were so many people (mostly wearing prints, if you were wondering) who came out to support this wonderful addition to Larchmont Boulevard. The store was packed with wall-to-wall people. Even Trina and her husband, Jonathan were there. I wanted to say hello, but I was afraid of coming off like a creepy fan girl. I also saw Tom Sandoval from Vanderpump Rules. His outfit did not rule. No, Arianna was not there. (At least six people have asked me this question.) 

Obviously, I was impressed with the clothing but the store itself was equally stylish. Designed by Bestor Architecture in a mid century modern style, the wood paneled walls and tile floors reminded me of the Palm Springs flagship location.

It's not desert chic, it's just chic!

It's not desert chic, it's just chic!

Pretty prints!

Pretty prints!

The store had everything including clothing for men and women as well as accessories. I wanted all of the handbags! 

Sunglasses are absolutely essential. 

There was also a photobooth! Here I am with my friend Farah.

Now that I can go to Trina Turk whenever I want, expect a whole lot more prints in my wardrobe! 

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Activewear Makeup Is Now A Thing & You Are Going To Be Obsessed

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A few weeks ago, I first posted about Kinx Active, which is a new activewear cosmetics company. Ever since, I’ve been dropping hints about the amazing photoshoot we had with Hayley Fisk.

Kinx Logo Shirt

Unlike your regular makeup, Kinx kind of has super powers. It looks like ordinary makeup and is applied the same way, but you can put it on at the beginning of the day, get your sweat on and then walk around without looking like you either got into a fight with someone or watched a mini marathon of Beaches followed by Titanic.

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Kinx currently offers three gel finish eyeliners, which are Black (so classic), Syrup (the perfect everyday brown) and Cream (perfect for making your eyes look awake after one of those hour and a half long yoga classes- yawn). While Kinx doesn’t sweat off, it is easily removed with regular makeup remover. Don’t ask me how that works. I just enjoy the benefits.

Larchmont Dress

This is me enjoying the benefits of Kinx. If you were wondering, it’s replaced every other eyeliner I wear because clearly, I’m not working out in this picture.

Another bonus is that Kinx liners self-sharpen. If you've ever accidently stabbed yourself in the eye or tried to line with a dull pencil, you know how important this is. Seriously, other than water boarding, could anything possibly feel worse than trying to line your eyes with a dull pencil?

Dr Pilates Reformer

I’m all dolled up and getting my Pilates on. If you want to steal my look, both the tank top and leggings are DG 2 LUX SPORT by Diane Gilman. But don’t steal my Kinx, get your own.

Dr Pilates Magic Circle

DR Pilates on Larchmont in Los Angeles is my favorite studio. If you want to stalk me, I’m there at least once a week. Like Kinx and DG 2 LUX SPORT, DR is magical. But don’t ask me what is magical about the Magic Circle because I’ve been trying to figure that out for years.

Post class, I still have my glow and another DG 2 LUXSPORT top and t-shirt on.

Dr Pilates outiside

Seriously, this is close up. Does it look like I just spent an hour on the reformer? NOPE!

Kinx Face Wipes

Kinx also has amazing face wipes for when I need a little post cardio triage. Smart people engineered the leak-free packaging, so your wipes don’t dry out. Because a dried out face wipe is a useless face wipe. Thank you Kinx for thinking of the most important face wipe feature ever.

Larchmont Blvd

This is me on my way to spin class. You bet I’m using my Kinx about an hour from now.

So, if you want to get your Kinx on at a sweet discount, go to Kinx Active and use promo code AL15 for 15% off.