You're Going To Be Obsessed With These Custom Holiday Cards

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Can you believe 2018 is almost over? (Do we really have a choice?) Get ready, because it’s almost “The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year!” And by wonderful, I mean stressful and exhausting. But you know what shouldn’t be exhausting? Holiday cards! That’s why I used Basic Invite to get mine this year!

Okay, but let’s stop for a second….

I know what you’re thinking—

Amanda, you’re so not basic. Why are you recommending something basic? GIRL, HAVE YOU LOST YOUR MIND?

No!!!! 

Basic Invite’s holiday cards aren’t basic! They have over 500 different Christmas and holiday cards that you can customize. So you end up with gorgeous cards that won’t look like everyone else’s.

Don’t Be Jealous, But I’m Living My Best Holiday Card Life Right Now

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Basic invite has everything card related covered from cute Christmas tree cards to sophisticated trifold holiday cards and holiday party invites. There are so many options and it’s impossible to go wrong.

You can create adorable photo cards with your actual babies or fur babies like I did here.

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Or even create beautiful cards to send to the people you work with. Skip the email and make an impression IRL. Your card doesn’t even need to be as funny as mine is.  

This is the card I’m sending to all of my PR friends!

This is the card I’m sending to all of my PR friends!

Even if you aren’t creative, there are many other ways to customize your cards. Basic Invite has 180 different color options you can use. I was super excited to make the palm trees on my card hot pink. If 180 colors aren’t enough for you—holiday cards are probably the least of your problems.

If You Want To Make It Extra Fancy

Get foil cards! Choose from gold, silver, and even rose gold (YESS!!! ROSE GOLD) in a flat or raised style.

Basic Invite Is Also Your Personal Card Assistant 

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Do you know anyone’s address?

(Insert cricket sounds here)

No, of course you don’t!

That’s why Basic Invite has an address capturing service that allows you to simply share a link on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram, to request addresses. Then they’re stored in your account. It also makes you way less annoying and people will actually be excited to receive your cards.

Basic Invite offers recipient address printing at no cost on all Christmas card orders! If you’ve ever been embarrassed of your own handwriting or wasted six envelopes trying to write a zip code without smearing three lines of ink—this can be a total game changer.

There are also 40 different colors of envelopes, so your card doesn’t get mistaken for a boring person’s in the mailbox. Just another custom touch…

Custom Samples For Invitations

So you know when you buy custom invitations online and then you have to make a commitment without seeing or feeling them IRL first? Terrifying, right? Basic Invite understands what a mess this is. So they will print off a sample and send it to you, so you can see and feel the paper quality. It also prevents those annoying “What did you think of my invite?” calls.

Do what are you waiting for?

Go to Basic Invite and start planning your holiday cards right now!

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The Best Handbags To Buy From After Christmas Sales Because Being Nice To Yourself Isn't Naughty

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Sometimes Santa screws up and doesn’t bring you what you want. But just because he was naughty doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be nice to yourself. So if a handbag was on your list this year and you didn’t get one, it’s time to take advantage of some amazing after Christmas sales. Here are ten fabulous handbags that are MAJORLY discounted right now. And don’t worry if you spent way too much money on other people, there are several budget-friendly options here.

As you know, the prices could change, so don’t get mad at me, but also make a quick decision. You totally deserve a good present.

Marc Jacobs Wingman Leather Tote

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Are you looking for the perfect everyday bag? This one has room to tote around everything you need and more. It also comes with a little zip pouch. Yay bonus! Originally $395, it’s currently on sale for $237.

Loeffler Randall Minimal Rider Suede and Leather Satchel

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Originally $495, this adorable pink cross body bag is on sale for $297. It’s so pretty and the color works all year round.

Salvatore Ferragamo Vara Floral Print Snakeskin Crossbody

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This Ferragamo floral print bag is everything! Obviously, it’s an investment, but one you will certainly receive compliments on for the rest of your life.

Clare V. Flat Canvas Clutch in Black Linen & Pink

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Did you want a print bag that was a little more budget friendly? For $84, this chic little clutch works for everything from a formal event to date night.

Ted Baker Small Lamica Patent Leather Shopper

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Are you looking for a basic black tote that isn’t basic at all? The texture and copper bow on this bag make it really extra without an extra price because it’s only $130.65.

Chloé Drew Mini Patchwork Leather And Suede Shoulder Bag

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Everything about this bag is to die for. From the signature shape to unique leather and suede patchwork, it’s absolutely stunning. At $1,494, it’s currently 40% off. Seriously, how often does that happen?

Chloé Drew Small Leather And Suede Shoulder Bag

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Were you looking for a Drew that is a little more all year round or everyday? This dark yellow one works with just about everything. Down 30%, it’s currently $1,365.


Lanvin Lien Smooth And Patent-Leather Shoulder Bag

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This classic bag will never go out of style and has enough room to take you from day to night. Also, that clasp will stop traffic. At $1,146 it’s 40% off.

Nordstrom Transparent Lace Box Clutch

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Are you looking to buy yourself a tiny treat for the cost of brunch? I love this little lace clutch, which at $39.49 is 50% off. It has a chic little chain so you can also wear it on your shoulder. It’s perfect for New Years Eve or maybe even as a bridesmaid gift.

Elizabeth and James Eloise Embossed Field Bag

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This bag looks like it is vintage but, it’s not. But for $177, you can fool everyone. I won’t tell anyone if you lie. It will be our secret. 

Red Eyeshadow Tutorial: A Pretty & Easy Holiday Look

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Red eyeshadow is a great holiday party look for Christmas, New Years Eve’s or just happy hour (if you’ve had a bad day, happy hour is considered a party). It’s a perfect trendy look for people who don’t normally do the trendy look thing because they are afraid of looking like an utter jackass. But red is super easy to apply, sexy and not as over the top as it sounds. Just don’t do it if you are wearing green. There’s only so much holiday spirit that is appropriate at one time.

The look I did was so pretty that even my husband noticed. I was actually so shocked when he said something that I tripped and nearly landed on my face. So I highly recommend you forewarn the people around you that there will be a whole lot of glowing going on.

Here are the steps I took to create this look.

Prime

Apply Laura Geller Spackle Tinted Under Makeup Primer in Champagne to your entire face. I know there are 9000 primers out there to choose from, but because Spackle is so moisturizing, it’s the best choice for winter skin.

Cover Up

Dot concealer under your eyes. My personal favorite is Kevyn Aucoin Sensual Skin Enhancer Concealer and Foundation. Warning: This product is very concentrated—so first apply to your hand and then blend out.

Also, let’s keep a secret between us. This product is the bottomless mimosa brunch of concealer. My little jar has lasted 1.5 years with no end in sight.

Apply Foundation

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Blend out your foundation with a silicone blender to create a matte look. Because your eyes are bold and shiny, you don’t want to be too shimmery or dewy with the rest of your face. I like the MakeupDrop Silicone Makeup Applicator. If you’ve never used a silicone applicator before, the first few times you try it will feel like an alien is licking your face, but once you get used to working this way, it’s borderline life changing. I put a few drops of Nars All Day Luminous Weightless Foundation on the applicator itself and take it from there.

Hone The Brow Bone

Apply an off-white matte shadow to your entire lid—brow bone to lash line. I’m wearing Blanc Type By MAC.

Layer Your Lid

Apply a light taupe shadow to your lid. I’m using the Morphe 350 Nature Glow Eyeshadow Palette. The shade I used us the second shadow down on the left side of the palette.

Color The Crease

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Then apply a shimmery red shadow to your crease and upper part of your lid. I’m using the second to last shadow in the Morphe palette.

Blend using a Beauty Blender or sponge.

Line The Lashes

Use a brown liquid liner on the top lash line. I like Shiseido Automatic Fine Eyeliner in Brown or Wet N Wild Proline Felt Tip Eyeliner in Dark Brown. (I know, very high and low end).

Apply a shimmery white liner to the bottom of your waterline. I used NYX Slim Eye Pencil in White Pearl here.

Shimmer And Shine

Apply a more shimmery red shadow over your lower lash line and blend out. You can do the entire length of your eye for a more dramatic effect. The color I chose here is from the Ardell Shimmer Pro Eyeshadow Palette.

Make Sure Your Brows Are Banging

Fill in your brows with a pencil or gel. I’m wearing Wunderbrow Brow Gel in Brunette (yeah, I’m a blonde but brow trends).

Love Your Lashes

Curl Your Eyelashes.

Apply lash primer. I use Radiant Complex.

Then apply mascara. I’m wearing L’Oreal Telescopic Mascara in Carbon Black. The brush is great because it helps you coat even those tiny, mini, sort of invisible lashes.

Check Your Cheeks

Apply blush to the apples of your cheeks. I’m all about Nars Orgasm (for life).

Apply highlighter on top of the blush. I like Sweat Cosmetics Mineral Illuminator because the powder is built right into the brush, so it dispenses subtly and evenly.

Set It And Forget It

Finish off your look with setting spray. I used UncompliKated SPF 50 Soft Focus Makeup Setting Spray by Kate Somerville to get that slightly airbrushed/IRL Pretty Filter look.

Love Your Lips

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I was terrified to try purple and now I’m obsessed with Laura Geller New York Color Luster Lip Gloss The Diamonds Top Coat Duo. This is the most beautiful purple I’ve ever seen. It has a rich, moisturizing feel and lasts longer than most glosses.

Things We're Too Lazy To Blog About Podcast: Holiday Gift Guide

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Ali and I found the best holiday gifts for everyone on your list from your new boyfriend, to your best friend, that boring girl whose party you have to go to, everyone you love and even for those people you hate, but are obligated to buy a something for.  Why read endless gift guides if you can multitask and listen to just one? Here are all the brands, products and deals we chatted about. For more info, listen on iTunesGoogle PlayStitcherAudioBoom, and now Spotify, or stream/download below.

Motorola Z2 Force Shatterproof Android Phone

Motorola Mods 360 Camera & Gamepad

Soft Surroundings- Various gifts- $10 off a purchase of $50 or more, use promo code THANKS10

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Use this link below for 10% off or promo code LAZYPOD

Pretty You London Slippers

50% off all styles except for the recently launched 2017 fall designs on Black Friday.

Bonus: spend $100 or more and receive free shipping. (Valid Black Friday through Cyber Monday)

Cyber Monday: 15% off new fall designs as well as 50% off other styles

Baby Be Hip

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Custom baby gifts

Promo Code: LAZYPOD for 15% any order

STS Blue

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Denim jackets and jeans

Bando

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Galactic Sneeze Games

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Soko Jewlery

Barbella Box

Oaki Boots (We might have mispronounced this during the podcast, sorry)

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Be Festive & Impressive: My Best Party Tips For The Holidays

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Do you want to throw one of those parties that everyone remembers in a good way? Lots of people think throwing a fabulous soiree (even if it is just in your living room) is a major ordeal. CTFD and listen to me. There is really only one thing you need to know. If you don't have a ton of time to plan, cooking skills, or a huge budget, whether you serve two people or 200 people (well, maybe not that many, but I can't think of 200 people I like), the same overall idea applies—being a good host is all about attention to detail. Here are a few of my best tips create a fun, fabulous and festive event that will keep your guests posting all weekend long.

Never Serve Your Food In The Package It Came In

Why is this my first tip? Because when people do this—It makes me insane. I cannot tell you how many times I’ve been to someone’s house and they’ve served hummus or salsa in the package it came in. USE A BOWL! Any bowl. This takes seconds and classes up your event exponentially. 

Cooking Isn’t Necessary, If You Aren’t A Chef

If you want to throw a party but last time you made your mom’s Swedish meatballs, you had to call the fire department, don’t bother. Go to Trader Joe’s and buy prepackaged apps like spanakopita and pigs in a blanket. If those aren’t your thing, there are tons of options. But be sure to heat everything up in the oven, NOT the microwave.

DO NOT SERVE ON STYROFOAM

This one is obvious, but not to everyone. Several years ago, I went to a dinner at someone’s house for a religious holiday and they served on Styrofoam. I’m pretty sure even G-d was disgusted. First of all, it’s AWFUL for the environment. It also looks tacky. While serving on regular plates is ideal, there are times when it's impractical or even impossible. That being said, not all disposable plates are created equally. Keep in mind that just because something is disposable, doesn’t mean it should look like something you want to throw out. There are so many stylish paper plate options available. Here are a few of them. 

A Platter Makes A Party

If you entertain often, I think it’s important to have a section of platters. I have several I received as wedding gifts and while I don’t entertain as often I would like to, I love any opportunity to use them. My personal ones are from Kate Spade, Nambé, and Christophle, but while high-end is nice, it isn’t necessary. Target has tons of options. Another idea is to buy individual dinner plates and use them as platters, especially if you aren’t serving on a large table. 

DO NOT SERVE ON STYROFOAM

This one is obvious, but not to everyone. Several years ago, I went to a dinner at someone’s house for a religious holiday and they served on Styrofoam. I’m pretty sure even G-d was disgusted. First of all, it’s AWFUL for the environment. It also looks tacky. While serving on regular plates is ideal, there are times when serving on paper plates might make more sense. That being said, not all disposable plates are created equally. Just because something is disposable doesn’t mean it should look like something you want to throw out. There are so many stylish paper plate options available. Here are a few that I really like. 

Napkins Are Important

Cute cocktail napkins=napkins=coasters=food grease not everywhere=no coffee tables destroyed.

Make Fancy Water

It’s not just about drinking and driving or making sure you accommodate the hydrationally-challenged. But rather, it's about that one friend who gets wasted every year and acts epically annoying. Put some water in a pitcher. Throw fruit in it. Lemons, strawberries, cucumbers. It doesn’t matter. Pick one. People will drink it. 

Create A Signature Cocktail

A basic bar is so boring. Make some signature holiday cocktails and serve from a pitcher. It’s minimal work for maximum glam.

Never Forget Dessert

Everyone likes dessert (and if you don’t—who are you?). Buy something fun for dessert like mini cupcakes from a local bakery or try my semi-secret semi-homemade cookie recipe.

Step One: Buy the refrigerated cookie dough in a tube from your local supermarket. I like Pillsbury Chocolate Chip, but any will do.

Step 2: Prepare according to the package’s directions.

Step 3: Cut off enough dough for a cookie.

Step 4: Ball the dough in your hands and flatten it out.

Step 5: Put in on a cookie sheet and bake according to directions.

Step 6: Fool everyone. None of your cookies will look alike so people assume it came from a recipe and what is essentially a plastic tube. Works. Every. Time.

Don’t Forget The Bathroom

Not to sound like your mom, but if you are having people over, make sure you have enough toilet paper, hand soap and a place for your guests to dry their hands. I always feel awkward when there aren’t guest towels or any kind of towel for that matter to dry my hands. I feel uncomfortable using your personal towel, but I am not going to wipe my hands on what I am wearing, which is inevitably dry clean only. Am I supposed to use toilet paper? Is your house a gas station? And don’t get me started on people who don’t have enough soap. What’s wrong with you? Also, a scented candle makes your bathroom more festive and less stinky.

*By the way, if you really want to be nice, that enamel pin from Ban.do pictured above makes a great stocking stuffer.

 

F- It Fridays: Your Weekly Dose of Retail Therapy (Holiday Beauty Edition)

It's a little over a week until Christmas and Hanukkah (which happens to start on Christmas Eve this year). No matter what holiday you celebrate (or pretend to celebrate, or just want to get over with already), we all know the Pony Express (aka the post office and every single courier I've ever dealt with) does not always deliver on time. So, please consider this your warning and get yourself together right now. If you couldn’t find something on my $25 and under F-It Friday last week or the Gift Guide For Special Snowflakes, then consider any one of these fabulous beauty sets. They're all fool-proof favorites. Seriously, if someone doesn’t like any one of these gifts, you probably need to re-evaluate your relationship with them. And between us… I won’t tell anyone if you are naughty and end up buying a little something here for yourself. 

Laura Geller So Scrumptious 6 Piece Color Collection

Laura Geller’s So Scrumptious Set is worth $173 and currently on sale at Ulta for (don’t faint when you read this number) $39. It has everything you need for a party-ready look including primer (seriously, we all need more of that), foundation (fair or medium options, LG totally hooks it up), blush, an eyeshadow trio, lip gloss and a double-ended face brush. Run, don’t walk (or just click) to your nearest Ulta right now. 

Decleor Merry Oils Premium Gift Set

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I like Decleor’s Merry Oils Premium Gift Set because oils are so luxurious. Also, the winter dries your skin like no other season can (thanks a lot, Winter!). The person who receives this gift will actually be appreciative because Decleor will save their face and body from the inevitable frost. You might actually receive a thank you card in the mail for this fabulous find (or a text, at the very least). The set includes Aroma Cleanse Micellar Oil, Aroma Nutrition Satin Softening Dry Oil, 1000 Grain Body Exfoliator (as opposed to 1000 grain bread, sorry I can’t help myself), Aromessence Neroli Hydrating Night Balm and Aromessence Neroli Hydrating Oil Serum. 

Flowerful by FLOWER Colorful Nail Collection

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Are you looking for an under $10 gift for a White Elephant or grab bag? Look no further than Flowerful by FLOWER Colorful Nail Collection. Flower is Drew Barrymore’s beauty line and might even contain some of her magical goddess power (Drew Barrymore is a magical goddess. End of story). With eight nail shades and two glittery nail files, it will make your hands sparkle. 

SkinCeuticals Gold Standard Kit – Fine Lines & Wrinkles

You know that friend who is more afraid of aging than getting by a train? SkinCeuticals Gold Standard Kit – Fine Lines & Wrinkles is the perfect gift for that person. This kit contains two heroes of the SkinCeuticals line. C E Ferulic is an antioxidant serum that neutralizes free radicals, helps build collagen and makes holiday parties more tolerable (because skin compliments). The Hydrating B5 gel is like the personal assistant of C E Ferulic, making it work better, harder and more efficiently. Containing hot ingredient du jour, hyaluronic acid, it helps moisture bind to the skin.

Anthony Head To Toe Survival Kit

Do you have a dude in your life that likes fancy grooming products? Don’t make him survive without an Anthony Head To Toe Survival Kit. It has all of the essentials he needs including Rush Hair + Body Wash, Glycolic Facial Cleanser, Facial Scrub, Shave Cream, and All Purpose Facial Moisturizer. It’s perfect for traveling, especially if he tends to “borrow” your products.

F- It Fridays: Your Weekly Dose Of Retail Therapy: (Holiday Gifts Under $25 Edition)

F- It Fridays are back! So, normally this column is about buying things for yourself, but that's kind of hard during the holidays. We all know it's better to give than receive, so here are some of my favorite gifts under $25. Give them to your friends, family, lovers or those people you pretend you like and must give an obligatory gift to. Or just shop for yourself. I won't tell anyone if you do.

Go Comb

 

The Go Comb is an affordable gift for everyone your list. For just $21.99, you get a cusomizable comb with a mirror on the back. It fits in any wallet, cosmetics case, back pocket or secret beauty stash. I can't think of one person who wouldn't be happy to receive this gift. It actually works for pretty much everyone on your list, except for bald people. 

Goodies From Shop Miss A

 

Shop Miss A is a glam girl's dream dollar store. With a selection of everything from adorable hair accessories like this Fuzzy Pom-Pom Headband to infinity scarves, makeup pouches and more. Because most items are just a buck, don't hesitate to treat yourself or pick up extra stocking stuffers. 

Christian Lacroix Ombré Notebook

While you thought the only Lacroix you could shell out for was the sparkling water, it turns out you're wrong. Christian Lacroix (totally unrelated to the water company, by the way) has an affordably chic ombré notebook. Use it to write down goals, new years resolutions, what you're grateful for, or to compose mean haikus. No matter what you write, you'll be doing it in style.

Philosophy The Gift Of Glowing Skin Set

Usually $25 doesn't get you much when it comes to skincare, but not The Gift Of Glowing Skin by Philosophy. It has a travel size Purity Face Wash, Microdelivery Exfoliating Water, Renewed Hope in a Jar and a Hands of Hope Cream worth $63. Now that's a philosophy we can all subscribe to. 

Michael Aram Rock Jigger

 

Michael Aram makes such beautiful, sophisticated collectables and this rock jigger is no exception. A perfect gift for the cocktail connoisseur or budding mixologist, it stands out on it's own or to upgrade that bottle of liquor you planned on re-gifting this year. 

Holiday Travel: Carry On Bag Necessities

Welcome to December. Is it really the most wonderful time of the year if you have to go to the airport? In any other situation, a complete stranger yelling at you to take off your clothes and shoes is considered a violation. But, there is one way to try and tame travel stress (other than a valium and a glass of wine), which is to be equipped with a large carry on bag that has everything I need to make my flight more comfortable. 

The Bag

I always travel with my MRKT Martin Travel bag. It has enough room for everything I need and more. I also use it on weekend trips. Made entirely of vegan felt and microsuede, it's stylish and durable enough to be squeezed under the seat.

Snacks Snacks Snacks

I always travel with tons of snacks because Terminal 3 at LAX, which is the only terminal I fly out of, literally has zero healthy food options. (Zero! If don’t believe me, read the Yelp reviews.)

I’m really into Perfect Bars right now. High in protein, they’re packed with superfood, non-gmo, gluten-free ingredients. They’re also filling, so I don’t end up eating junk food on the plane. My favorite flavors are Almond Butter and Maple Almond butter, which taste like spooning actual almond butter out of a jar, but in bar form. The Blueberry Cashew flavor is also pretty delicious. I usually bring extras so I can eat them for breakfast on the go.

I also love Heath Warrior Chia Bars. Between 100 and 110 calories each, these small, but mighty snacks have 1000mg of Omega-3, 4 grams of fiber and 3 grams of plant-based protein. There are several flavor choices, but my favorites are coconut and dark chocolate. They’re light, but filling, so they're good for before or after working out (which is something I try to do when I travel) or for those times when you know you're going to eat dinner in an hour, but you're starving. 

Purely Elizabeth's Ancient Grain Minis are practically made for travel. Gluten-free, non-gmo and vegan, every bag has 2oz of ancient grain granola. You can mix into yogurt (which is readily available at most airports, even LAX) or pour milk right into the bag. It won’t leak, I promise. 

Cashmere Wrap

When I’m on a plane, I either sweat like I’m taking a spin class or shiver like I’m in a cyrotherapy session. So, I wear a light top and carry a cashmere wrap. It’s a blanket and fashion accessory all rolled into one. The one I'm wearing in the picture is from Vince and I’ve had it so long, it's practically vintage. 

Talbots currently has a beautiful cashmere wrap. While that store isn’t exactly one of my go-tos, there aren't many affordable cashmere wraps available this season. Cashmere doesn’t come cheap, but friends don’t let friends buy wool blends. Treat yourself. Traveling is hard enough. 

Neck Pillow

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I always try and catch a few zzzs on the flight, so a neck pillow is a must. Skip the ones they sell at the airport because they’re overpriced and generally mediocre. Instead prepare early and buy The World’s Best Neck Pillow. It’s comfortable, machine washable, cheap and apparently the world's best.

Decléor Aurabsolu Mist

Nothing makes your face feel gross quite the way re-circulated airplane air can. Decléor Aurabsolu Mist is travel friendly and smells like herbal heaven. You can also spray some on a cotton ball in place of your regular toner.

Thank you to Chin-Chin Hao for the beautiful photos.