Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Wearing //
Halogen skirt (old) but similar here & here
Sole Society heels, similar here & here

After camping in a tent this past weekend, using baby wipes to take a "bath", and going without makeup, I was looking forward to coming home and dressing up for my mom's 64th birthday dinner. Don't get me wrong. I'm quite proud of myself for roughing it. I haven't really camped in years. Usually Nate and I borrow his parents trailer which has all the amenities you could possibly ask for. A shower, a toilet, a mirror. But there is something liberating about not having these things and therefore not worrying about your general appearance. I think we all get so caught up in the way we look on a daily basis. Is this outfit okay? Are my eyebrows perfectly in place? Is someone going to ask me if I'm pregnant because my tummy isn't flat? Is my hair frizzing? I don't know about you, but it can be mentally exhausting! Even taking blog photos can turn my smile into a frown if the pictures don't come out the way I envisioned and then that inevitably leads to me questioning everything about myself. But it's alright. I don't have to look perfect because I'm not perfect, nobody is. If there is one takeaway from camping this go around, it's that I am grateful to just be clean again, not have that campfire smell stuck in my hair, and be able to use the restroom in peace. A real restroom, not a bucket. Yes, I did that. I actually did that. It's called a portable loo if you want to look it up on Amazon. Fancy. So of course I love stuff. I blog about them. Clothes, shoes, jewelry, bags, forty different sheet masks. Sometimes I have to take a step back. Just forget about shopping, sales, and the like and live without focusing on the superficial if only for a weekend camping trip.


But then I came home and entered my closet, pulled out one of my favorite skirts, and told Nate to get the camera ready before mom's celebration on Monday...back to blogging!

Monday, August 22, 2016

I've walked by Jo Malone counters in higher-end department stores for years, but never felt worthy enough to stop and take a look. I always assumed that the price point was out of my range, and the sales girls looked intimidating to me. But now that I'm older, a bit more confident, and a self-proclaimed beauty enthusiast, I decided to let go of my misgivings and pop into Bloomingdales. I made a beeline for Jo Malone, and to my surprise, the SA was not only extremely kind and helpful but she also allowed me to test, spray, and basically annoy her with my questions and requests.

When I was in high school and even into my twenties, I gravitated towards sweet and fruity fragrances. You know, the kind that all your friends wore and that could be easily found at any department store counter. Usually it was celebrity endorsed (I'm talking Jessica Simpson and J Lo). I don't regret my choices back then because I didn't know what I was doing and I just bought what smelled good on other people. Needless to say, I cannot stand those scents now! Too sickly sweet and artificial smelling. I'm not a perfume snob, but I went into this purchase with the intention of smelling REAL. A scent that can be found in nature and not in a chemist's lab.

Wood Sage and Sea Salt was love at first whiff. And trust me, I smelled them all, coffee beans firmly against my nostrils after each test. This will come as a shock to no one who regularly reads here, but I LOVE the ocean and anything that reminds me of a day (or night) at the beach will instantly draw me in. The notes are fresh, light, but with a little musk. As quoted directly from the Jo Malone website, I feel this is the perfect description: "Escape the everyday along the windswept shore. Waves breaking white, the air fresh with sea salt and spray. Alive with the mineral scent of the rugged cliffs. Mingling with the woody earthiness of sage. Lively, spirited, and totally joyful." Damn. Well I couldn't have written it better myself, so there it is. This cologne in all its glory.

Notes: Sea salt, Ambrette seeds (whatever those are), sage, red algae, and grapefruit.

Price Point: 1 oz. for $65 dollars. A little steep yes, but worth it in my opinion especially considering the price of perfume in general these days. The larger bottles are $130. Yikes.

Lasting Power: I wouldn't say that it lasts a full day, but my trick is to spray my pulse points as well as my actual clothing so that you get the true scent. It fades rather nicely and settles very clean on my skin. Of course this will be different on everyone according to your body chemistry. Another thing I didn't realize when I was younger. However, I highly recommend this and will definitely be trying others from the line in the future. I'm hooked.

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Wearing //
Asos pumps, similar here 
Stella & Dot bracelet, similar
Stretch bracelets, similar
Beauty //
Lips in NYX Prague 

My best friend has always told me that as long as she has her lips painted and her lashes on, she feels like she can go out and conquer the world. In theory I agree although not entirely in practice. I've been known to go without makeup pretty often. This is mostly due to laziness of course, but sometimes a girl just needs a break from all the "war paint". Anyway, during my trip to scour the Nordstrom anniversary sale a couple weeks back, I spotted the line of one of my all-time favorite style bloggers. Julie from Sincerely Jules has her own clothing brand comprised of mostly tee shirts and cool girl pieces. I'm not normally a fan of graphic tees, but as soon as I spotted a doll face staring back at me, I knew I couldn't pass it up. It's darling! And how original of me to pair it with bright pink lips? Totally necessary.

Full disclosure: I don't usually have high hopes for celebrity clothing lines, but I have to admit I'm impressed. The quality is definitely there. The cotton is super soft, and the relaxed fit looks great with skinny denim and classic pumps. I'd sleep in it if I could but since I want this one to last, I'll stick to keeping it away from my lounge wear/workout tops/PJ drawer that most of my t-shirts sadly end up in.

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Wearing //
J.Crew Factory clutch, similar
Zara pumps, similar here and here
Delezhen necklace, almost identical here

I love going to happy hour, as I'm sure many of you do too! It's nice to unwind after a long week and kick back with a drink while watching the sun go down. Now that I'm in my 30's, I'd much rather do this at a reasonable time and be home before dark so I can cuddle up with my dog, tear off my clothes and put yoga pants on, and watch Netflix. That's exactly what Nate and I did last Thursday and it was sheer perfection. A cold glass of bubbly prosecco, the last glimmer of light overlooking the mountains, and a charcuterie board to snack on while chuckling to ourselves about how the neighboring table had clearly started drinking at...let's just say a few hours earlier. We weren't able to catch up to them, but we still considered the happy hour a success. No hangover to show for it.

You know what else is pretty darn perfect? This long olive vest, which I can say with a bit of embarrassment that I have worn to absolute death. I throw it on over everything. I don't know what it is, but having that extra layer just adds a certain something. It makes you look thinner too, because it gives the illusion of a smaller waist and flatter tummy. Hey, after some appetizers and drinks, I needed all the help I could get!