Anthropologie goes A+!

So if you’ve been following me and my fashion for a while, you’ll not be surprised that I was totally geeked out upon learning  that my beloved Anthropologie was planning to launch a plus size division. It claimed to garner the same high-quality boho-chic trends that I’d come to love and wear – that is, as long as the material had enough lycra for these hips. And in most cases in the past, it did not. But over the years, there were still a few pieces I’d been able to slide my way into, and I’m happy to say those are still in rotation. However, knowing that the store I’d frequent if only for the sale racks (because the way my account is set up) would soon be carrying plus made my already anxious budget scream a little bit louder. Sorry, not sorry. Momma’s going shopping. Continue reading “Anthropologie goes A+!”

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I Like My Soaps Creamed

One of my favorite things to do after I get home from a long day of work is to hop in a hot, preferably-candle-lit shower. Unfortunately I don’t always have time for the candles, but the hot part is a must. The other must, of late, has been my specialty soap and body scrub from Amber of Creamed Soaps.

Now let me preface this by saying I have been known to be a bit of a soap snob… yes that is a real thing. Back when I was living in DC, you could find me early morning on any given Saturday or Sunday before or after my volunteer work at the soap man’s stand at Eastern Market. I’d be the one in worn Uggs and a printed headwrap, pressing my nose into the bins, searching for the perfect peppermint and sandalwood blend, with or without the little scrubby beads. I knew my soaps – not the technical terms – but the ones I liked. Regular store-brand soap, I kept in the pantry just in case guest popped over and needed a bar or heaven forbid, I ran out of my special blends. But as for me and my household, we shall use specialty soap… handcrafted with aromatherapy and misshapen edges. Continue reading “I Like My Soaps Creamed”

South Beach, Miami & Jazz in the Gardens

“I just love digging my car out of the snow!” said no one ever. Especially not me, even though I am willingly enduring my second winter in this lovely place called New York City. The snow, however, is for the birds – oh wait, even the birds fly south for the winter. So yea, no surprise that as this wintry season nears its end, I skipped town for a couple of days. Grabbed some girlfriends and slipped away to sunny Miami for a little R&R, girl chat, and all around beachyness (yes, I made that up – fight me). Continue reading “South Beach, Miami & Jazz in the Gardens”

I literally cannot

Have you ever said that? “I literally cannot.” I have. Plenty of times, actually. It’s become quite a bit of a catch phrase when people do things that are ridiculously hard to believe or imagine. Or when a situation arises that I just can’t deal with at the moment (or ever, for that matter). I literally cannot. As if to say this is beyond all comprehension and I just can not spend another moment on it.

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Well in those settings, I think the statement works. It’s more of an expression than a true declaration. However, in others it may be more of an issue than you would think. How so? Well, what we tell ourselves is usually what we in fact do. And when you speak to yourself negatively (silently or out loud, who am I to judge lol), you could in fact be self-sabotaging your efforts. There are have been scientific studies that suggest our language actually shapes the way we think, and that our sub conscience really does follow the things that we say. Therefore, it’s reasonable to conclude that our words really do carry a certain amount of weight. They have power. Actual, factual power. Tell yourself you’re smart and find a way to figure it out. Tell yourself you’re stupid and chances are…

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All jokes aside, though. This is serious business. By this line of reasoning, we really have the ability (and responsibility) to tell ourselves wonderful, beautiful things. In a world where there are literally thousands upon thousands of things that we have absolutely no control over, this is not one of those things. We can absolutely control what we tell ourselves each and every single day. And in that moment, we determine how things are going to be.

Ever heard the expression “the words you speak will be the house you live in”? Well apparently it’s true. And when responding to the question of “What would make you happy?” WebMD says “A new wardrobe, a faster car, moving to a different city? People often think these things are the key to feeling good, but experts say only about 10% of a person’s happiness is related to them.giphy Much more happiness — 90% — has to do with your general outlook on life. You can learn a lot about your own worldview by paying attention to “self-talk” — the conversation you have in your head about yourself and the world around you. Even more important, changing how you talk to yourself can actually help shift your perspective, too.”

But is a shift in perspective merely just looking at life through rose-colored glasses? Is it a lie to yourself method that just makes everything seem better when it really isn’t? Critics say no. The effects are real and not just some placebo pill to sugarcoat the awfulness. In fact, Psychology Today makes this interesting analysis:

Positive self-talk is not self-deception.  It is not mentally looking at circumstances with eyes that see only what you want to see.  Rather, positive self-talk is about recognizing the truth, in situations and in yourself.  One of the fundamental truths is that you will make mistakes.  To expect perfection in yourself or anyone else is unrealistic.  To expect no difficulties in life, whether through your own actions or sheer circumstances, is also unrealistic.

When negative events or mistakes happen, positive self-talk seeks to bring the positive out of the negative to help you do better, go further, or just keep moving forward.  The practice of positive self-talk is often the process that allows you to discover the obscured optimism, hope, and joy in any given situation.

– Psychology Today

Optimism, hope, and joy. What a powerful combination. You know, in the opening pic I was really going for a super fly extended stretch on my tippy toes. Didn’t quite make it, but it was a fun attempt. I laugh now, because the shirt I was wearing at the time says “I literally cannot.” And I’m pretty sure that’s what I was thinking – there’s no way I can do this. Now I wonder if that had anything to do with my failed attempt to get the perfect shot. Considering my balance and the way my equilibrium is set up, probably not. But still… it gives me pause.

So then, what’s the conclusion of the matter? All things being considered at the end of the day? Stop talking down to yourself. Stop being so negative. Yes, things go wrong and yes, we make mistakes. Yes, Mondays are Mondays and sometimes it rains. And yes close friends hurt our hearts and we lose people in death. But the choice is always the same, regardless of the situation – what shall we say to ourselves in the early morning when we just awake? How you answer that question can truly can be the difference between a good day, and a bad day. And with the way this world is currently set up, we can use all the good days we can get.

xoxo,
La.

The Makeup Show Makeup Shop NYC

Makeup, beauty brands, hair care, sample sale prices, and education. For what more can you ask? A makeup lovers dream, the Makeup Show announced earlier this year that they would be having a pop-up event, the Makeup Shop NYC, December 15th and 16th. Even though I attended the regularly scheduled Makeup Show back in August,  exclusively held for artists and industry professionals required to show credentials for entry, the Makeup Shop NYC was open to the public and included access to over 40 brands boasting special deals and discounts, along with demos and education. It was a great way to spend a few hours on a Saturday afternoon. Continue reading “The Makeup Show Makeup Shop NYC”

Bathroom Beauty Finds – Drugstore Edition

So two of the most frequently asked questions I receive are what do I put in my hair and what do I put on my face? Good questions, fam! I’m all about that fresh, dewy, skin and hair can literally be the difference between a good day and a bad. Yes, it’s that serious lol. So today I’m sharing some of my current beauty finds, right off of my bathroom shelves! The best part? The ones I’m including in this post can all be found in your local drugstore.

So let’s do hair first because it’s quick and easy. I usually wear my hair curly – though every now and then you’ll catch me in a cute blowout. But since I try to stay in the gym often, and the way my workouts are set up… there is no way in the world I’m leaving with straight hair. Enter good ol’ faithful Eco Styler styling gel. I know, I know… with so many amazing brands with shea and jojoba and honey and unicorn dust and here I am rocking with Eco Styler. Sorry, it works! I have other brands that I play with here and there, and I’ll share those in another post, but for the daily grind and casual glam that is me? It’s Eco. And to get a little fancy, I do like the one with the red top – it contains Argon oil and holds my curls nice and defined.

Get it from your local CVS or order online now from Amazon!

Now for this face! I have to tell you, I am still searching for the best routine for me. I’ve tried several different things and faces are funny – one thing can work for a while and then all of a sudden it’s wrap. Faces are finicky. When I travel, my face acts brand new. When the seasons change, it doesn’t even know me. Like, I’m still working it out. But for all intents and purposes, I’m going to share some of the items I am using now and I’ll keep you posted on futures purchases. Ok, here’s my top three:

  1. Garnier SkinActive Micellar Cleansing Water
    This is my best friend, especially on nights I really don’t feel like going through an entire routine but I absolutely refuse to sleep in my makeup. Please, please, please don’t sleep in your makeup lovelees – no matter how cute that glitter eye looked on the dance floor. Live to see another blemish-free day. Clean your skin! I like to use this with round cotton pads and it removes all of my makeup, including mascara and red lips! I keep this on hand and definitely recommend it.
  2. Valjean Labs Facial Serum, Glow, Vitamin C + Magnesium
    So this was a chance buy – I’m not going to lie. But sometimes trial and error really comes thru! I have fallen in love with facial serums and I had been using a sample of a more expensive brand that I loved, but couldn’t afford to purchase. So I happened upon this one and actually really like it, I’m not going to lie – I felt like a serum should be a tad bit thicker, but I do like how it feels on my face. Even though I’m still on my first bottle, I like it enough to finish and then reassess. I’m including it because of the Vitamin C and Magnesium boost, and according to Amazon, I’m not the only one who thinks this is a great buy! If you do decide to try it, let me know what you think 🙂
  3. L’Oréal Paris Skincare Pure-Clay Face Mask with Charcoal
    I love a good mask! Nothing like getting out the shower and slathering on a good mud mask while you sit back and chill and drink a nice glass of wine ice water. No judgement. But for real, masks are great! It’s so nice to relax while the impurities are just drawn right on out your skin! I think I’m going to do one when I finish writing this post 🙂 I’ve tried several good masks over my lifetime, but this post is dedicated to what I am using now. So in my bathroom now is the L’oreal mask and I’ve grown quite attached. Not only does it smell good and leave my face feeling lovely, it’s at a great price point so it doesn’t hurt my wallet. They have several different versions of this depending on your personal skin needs and goals, so read thru the descriptions and use what’s best for you. The charcoal is great for absorbing impurities and the eucalyptus acts as a great exfoliant for removing dead skin cells. Happy masking!

What are some of your current bathroom beauty finds? Do share! I’m always on the lookout for the best items for my skin and hair. Are you a producer or vendor of something you’d like me to try and review? Shoot me a message! Who knows, maybe one of your items will pop up on one of my upcoming posts!

xoxo,
La

PS – Because I use Amazon so much (I’ve got that Prime baby!), I’ve become an Amazon Influencer! So even though I am not being sponsored by the brands I’ve included, because I have personally purchased these and added them to my Influencer list, I may receive compensation from any purchases using the the links provided. Just want to give full disclosure!! Enjoy your shopping, lovelees!

Who is your stylist? 5 quick fashion tips

“Who is your stylist?” Four little words I always love to hear. Whether it’s out on the streets, or in my inbox – I love when another feels comfortable enough to say “hey girl, hey! You look cute!” Thank you, boooo, I do try! And guess what? I’ll usually tell you where I got it from… usually.

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Ok no for real, I’ll tell ya! In fact, I promise I’ll do better adding some of my favorite finds and retailers to the blog, especially those who cater to my curvy ladies. But today I’ll quickly share a few of my tips to keep my closet on the ready. Ready? Bet…

1.Catch the sale.

So even though I was the lamest of the lames this Black Friday and bought nothing, and I do mean nothing (a girl was on a mission), I usually LOVE a good sale. Especially when I know what I am looking for. There were so many great deals I saw this year, and I did my due diligence in forwarding on an email or two when it came thru the inbox. Sales are awesome because money is funny and who doesn’t love a good deal? If I can get something for 30%, 40%, even 50% off – I am totally down for the cause. Of course, the item needs to be something you 1) actually can use in my wardrobe and 2) actually can afford. If neither of the two apply, skip it girl. There will be others…

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2. Keep the receipt.

So, I am that girl who at any random moment has a few items in the closet with tags still attached. What?? Fight me. See #1. It was probably on sale and my wardrobe could use it. Perhaps I just didn’t have the event yet. Maybe it was the last ribbed sweated in my size and I couldn’t leave it in good conscience. Who knows? The point is, at some point and time I grabbed it and when I get the call to make that last minute grand opening, ya girl has a gown just waiting in the wings. Buuuttt in the event that call never comes, or my workouts are on point and I just dropped a size, I have no problem making a return. Oh I keeps the receipts! Look… sometimes it just doesn’t work out and we can’t go together. So, no bad feelings. It’s me, not you. But you can’t stay. It’s been real.

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3. Reuse and re-purpose.

I am not a celebrity. And more importantly, my account is not a celebrity. So if you like those denim jeans you saw me in last week, that’s great! You’ll probably see me in in them again next week. Oh I will re-use an item in a minute. Clean it, iron it, put it back in the closet! I know we live in the world of Instagram and TMZ, where everything is photographed and posted for the world to see, but let’s be realistic. I live in New York and my closet is like 5 inches long. We must do repeats. And don’t be afraid to re-purpose as well! That cute dress hanging in the pic doubles as my headwrap on a chilly day. If it works, it works!

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4. Splurge on the classics.

Trends come and go, but classics last forever! Keep that in mind when you’re deciding how much to spend on that glittery leopard sweatshirt. Just saying – consider the staying power and what it’s worth to you. I rather spend on a few good pencil skirts and blazers if I know I’ll be rocking them for quite some time. Not that I won’t rock cute a fashion nova set if it’s in budget, but I’ll save the splurge for items that can take me into next year.

5. Mix and match.

Black on black on blaackk. Yes, I like black too. But don’t be afraid to step out there. Polka dots. Stripes. Prints. Colors. Once you allow yourself the freedom to be creative, your current wardrobe may expand before your eyes. Mix and match the separates you have. Tie everything today with a sweater or a scarf. Think layers. Nothing dresses up and old item like a new one! So take a chance and mix it up. You’ll be surprised how cute it could be.

6. Shoes matter.

Please, please, please don’t ruin a great outfit with a bad shoe. I know, shoes can be expensive but they don’t have to be. That’s why you should refer to #1 and #4. A few good pairs of pumps can go with almost anything! Heels not your things? No problem, get some great flats that are comfortable and stylish. And try them on first – not all sizes are created equal. C’mon Cinderalla… don’t forget your slipper 🙂

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What are some of your favorite fashion tips? Do share! I’ll be adding more ideas to the blog and who knows – I may just include one of your suggestions (with credit, of course!) Do share!

xoxo,
La

Forget the mistake. Remember the Lesson.

I make a lot of mistakes. Like, a lot. Sometimes big, sometimes small, always wrong. Mistakes in money, mistakes in friendships… according to my stomach, that salted caramel shake last night was definitely a mistake. Like… they are endless. But guess what? I survived each one, and I’ve learned my lesson. And that is the key. Every. Single. Time.

Continue reading “Forget the mistake. Remember the Lesson.”