Is It True? I’ve Been Using Bobby Pins Wrong, Since…FOREVER?!

While doing a search for an article on haircuts, I came across this post by Honey & Fitz about bobby pins and could not believe what I was reading! I use bobby pins to pull my bangs back while exercising or to keep the hair out of my face on a windy day. I use them for braids,  to create some volume, or to hold a messy bun in place. The list of uses for bobby pins really is endless. But… have I been using bobby pins the wrong way all this time? How hard can it be? There are only two choices!

Well, the answer is a big fat, yes! I have been using bobby pins for the right purposes, but the wrong way all this time. If you still use the good ol’ fashioned bobby pins (they have evolved in colors and shapes) with the grooves on one side, you will want to know the grooved side should never be facing out for the world to see! They are to be put in face down! The purpose of the grooves is to grip your hair and the flat side is meant to press the hair down into those groves.

Who knew? Not me, but I am pretty sure I am not the only one who has been using them the wrong way after reading the  Honey & Fitz post. It’s good to know I was not alone, but even better to know the right way to use these handy hair tools. I have already tried the proper way of using the pins to pull my bangs back and can report that if you follow suit,  you will not have to fix them or any other style you try for the rest of the day! What a life changer, in my case about 18 years late, but better late than never! You are welcome bobby pin fanatics!

Originally posted October 16, 2013.

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Your First Time…Getting Your Legs Waxed

(Image Credit: Maegan Tintari)

(Image Credit: Maegan Tintari)

Brace yourself. Breathe in through your nose and out through your mouth and, like they always say, don’t look down!

As the hot wax begins to coat your legs, you’re probably beginning to think either a. This can’t be too bad, right? Or b. This is absolutely the dumbest idea I have ever had (besides that one night during spring break…)

But do not chicken out because the benefits of waxing will rid you of all of your lingering hesitations. Summer will be here faster than you think and if you can tolerate just a little excruciating pain you can have Venus commercial-ready legs that would make Victoria’s Secret models jealous.

Hair removal from waxing typically will last up to three weeks. That is three whole weeks of razor-free showering. The time saved by taking shaving out of your morning routine is bound to give you an extra five minutes of beauty sleep, and we all know what wonders those five minutes can do.

Not to mention, you are stubble free for three whole weeks. No more embarrassing razor burn, in-grown hairs and thick, coarse hairs that could sand wood. Hair continues to grow back finer and sparser after each waxing.

Okay, so before you just waltz into the salon there are a few things to know first.

You will want to grow your hair out for at least two weeks, minimum. You will need your hair to be about as long as your pinky nail, which is around a quarter of an inch. So, you might want to postpone any leg-revealing skirts or dresses and cancel any dates you may have planned. Most men aren’t into the bushman look.

During the hair growth process, exfoliate your legs daily by taking a loofah to those gams. This will prevent in-grown hairs that could potentially pop up. It also will leave your legs flake free and smooth.

Waxing will be unpleasant the first few times since your skin is not used to the ripping sensation that occurs when you pull the wax off.  To avoid pulling a 40 Year-Old Virgin and screaming Kelly Clarkson’s name at the top of your lungs, you might want to invest in some pain relievers. Numbing creams and Advil can help ease the pain somewhat. Even if you think you have a high pain tolerance, keep in mind that waxing can last anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour.

Ankles and shins always hurt a little more so you might squint a little tighter and let loose a little “ooh!” The knee is also another point of pain.  It may seem like they are trying to wax the skin off of them with the number of times they go over it, but the hair on the knee is very fine and requires a lot of wax.

(Image Credit: Crestock)

(Image Credit: Crestock)

Expect some redness and a little swelling; I mean you did just yank your hair right out of its root. It should subside in a few hours depending on the sensitivity of your skin.

If you have any kind of sunburn, rash or cut, wait until it goes away before getting waxed. It will not only be oh so painful, but it could cause some potentially dangerous infections.

While it is important to exfoliate and moisturize beforehand it is recommended to leave your skin alone for at least 48 hours after waxing. If bumps do happen to appear, avoid the urge to squeeze or tweeze. It will only make them worse! Try antiseptic ointment first.

Continue to wax every 4-6 weeks; the more consistent you are the less you have to go in. Hair grows on three different layers of skin, so the consistency will keep you smoother for longer. Once all the “cycles” of hair growth finally sync together, waxing will be a breeze.

One piece of advice: You may think you can be an in-home esthetician, but it can get messy. Ripping your hair off with hot wax is way easier when someone else is doing it. This is not something you want to learn the hard way!

Originally posted April 20, 2014.

Off the Runway and Down the Street: An Easy Way to be on Trend this Spring

(Image Credit: Urban Outfitters, Free People)

(Image Credit: Urban Outfitters, Free People)

Spring has finally sprung in most of the country; time to peel off the heavy layers and defrost our look.  We saw some killer looks for Spring 2016 on the runway and in the top fashion mags—here are some easy, wearable looks that will keep you right on trend without breaking the bank.

 

The Cold Shoulder

We’re seeing a lot of cool, off the shoulder looks this season.  It’s a subtle way to show a little skin all while creating major interest in a piece that instantly wows.

(Image Credit: Urban Outfitters)

(Image Credit: Urban Outfitters)

(Image Credit: ASOS)

(Image Credit: ASOS)

 

(Image Credit: Free People)

(Image Credit: Free People)

 

 

All White Everything

White is a big color this season from head to toe.  We’re seeing a total revamp of the basic white shirt; textiles and designs that make it current and closet-worthy.

And “Damn, Daniel!” wasn’t wrong either!  He most definitely is ‘back at it again with the white Vans”… and you can be too!  White sneakers – especially white throwback sneakers and slip-on sneakers, are having a moment this season.

(Image Credit: H&M)

(Image Credit: H&M)

(Image Credit: Vans)

(Image Credit: Vans)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

#TBT Sneaks

Speaking of all white sneakers, throwbacks are making a huge comeback for spring/summer 2016. Sneakers and slip-ons haven’t left the fashion scene; they just keep getting better.  It’s back to basics with the styles we lived for in the 90’s and the top brands are all over this—and nailing it! Not to mention, our feet have been comfortable for about 3 seasons straight now—we SO want this to keep going!

(Image Credit: Sketchers)

(Image Credit: Sketchers)

(Image Credit: Sketchers)

(Image Credit: Sketchers)

 

 

Mixed Media

A total mash-up of fabrics, textiles, and textures has entered the mix.   It’s not just leather and lace, it’s unique blends and creative looks that guarantee to stun.  Add interesting hemlines, ruffles, and/or stripes to the mix and you’ve hit the trifecta.

(Image Credit: Nordstrom)

(Image Credit: Nordstrom)

(Image Credit: TJ Maxx)

(Image Credit: TJ Maxx)

 

 

(Image Credit: Urban Outfitters)

(Image Credit: Urban Outfitters)

 

 

Come Suede with Me

Suede is another hot look for spring 2016.  Whether done in a slinky dress or a cool top, It’s one way to add texture to your wardrobe.  Find suede, or faux suede pieces done in a simple way that stretch your closet—wearable, mixable, and flattering.

(Image Credit: TJ Maxx)

(Image Credit: TJ Maxx)

(Image Credit: Urban Outfitters)

(Image Credit: Urban Outfitters)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Little Slinky Dress

This will become your go-to this season for a dressed up look or even a basic layering piece.  It skims the body so delicately, making it figure flattering and creating a beautiful neckline that will elongate the body.  Wear it as is with a cute sandal, or make it casual with a retro sneaker, OR throw a chambray shirt or denim jacket over for a daytime vibe.

(Image Credit: TJ Maxx)

(Image Credit: TJ Maxx)

(Image Credit: Urban Outfitters)

(Image Credit: Urban Outfitters)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Backpacks on Backpacks

It’s settled! The backpack stays for spring/summer 2016 as women everywhere love this easy, fresh look.  Look for fun colors and feminine silhouettes to spark some interest in this easy to wear must have.

(Image Credit: Urban Outfitters)

(Image Credit: Urban Outfitters)

(Image Credit: TJ Maxx)

(Image Credit: TJ Maxx)

 

Save Face: Learn When to Toss Your Makeup

(Image Credit: Luca Fabbian)

(Image Credit: Luca Fabbian)

I love trying out new makeup. I can sometimes have three mascaras and ten lipsticks circulating at the same time. There’s no doubt that this makes for a more fun time getting ready, but it can also result in a product I’ve used only once or twice sitting around for a few years because I think that maybe I’ll really need that blue eyeshadow for a future occasion, or even just because I feel like I’m being wasteful if I get rid of it. If you’re anything like me in this regard, you probably have unnecessary clutter around your vanity, but even worse? You’re likely to have expired makeup lying around.

Didn’t know cosmetics have expiration dates? Many people don’t, but unfortunately it’s the truth. If you look on the bottom of a product, often times there will be an indication of how long it is okay to use. For example, you might see “2Y,” meaning two years, or “6M,” indicating that you need to toss it after six months. If your cosmetics don’t have clear expiration dates on them, check out this list as a general guideline to when you need to say goodbye to your beauty products.

Mascara: I’ve always heard that mascara should be used no more than about three months. You don’t want to mess with bacteria that might find its way in, and it tends to get dried out and clumpy after that point, anyway.

Lipstick and lip gloss: From a quick glance at my most-used lip products, the general suggestion seems to be to toss after one year.

Foundation and concealer: These are typically fine to use for a year, but sometimes the advised expiration date is after only six months.

Eyeshadow: Mine range from one to two years, which is pretty painful since I’ll never make it through an entire eyeshadow palette in that time.

Face powders: Like eyeshadows, the rule of thumb is one to two years. This means setting powder, blush, bronzer, and the like all need to be used up in 24 months.

Liners and pommades: Six months to a year is the time frame you should stick to. Not only are they also more prone to bacteria since they are used around the eyes, but they are some of the quickest to dry out and stop working properly.

I know it hurts to throw away that beautiful, ridiculously overpriced Chanel foundation, but expired products just don’t work like they should—I can’t be the only one who’s shaken up a separated foundation in hopes of giving it new life. On a more positive note, this gives you every reason to make a Sephora trip without an ounce of guilt! It’s time to toss that forgotten makeup pile and get shopping.

5 Ways to Instantly ‘Fake’ Whiter Teeth

(Image Credit: Kegfire)

(Image Credit: Kegfire)

We’ve all been there—getting all dolled up and feeling really good about ourselves until we flash one last smile in the mirror… not the pearly whites we were expecting to see.  Then our minds go into snowball thinking.  “Too much coffee; never bought those white stripes; did I brush after all that red wine?”  Surely if we had a brighter smile we’d feel totally confident, but how can we erase those stains fast, like, right this second?  We can’t BUT we can ‘fake’ it ‘till we make it.

Here are 5 easy ways to instantly fake a whiter smile:

 

Quick brush with a BLUE toothpaste

Remember the color wheel in art class?  Blue sits directly across from yellow/orange – so the two cancel each other out.  Using a fast whitening blue toothpaste will cancel out a layer of color making your teeth look whiter in just one use.  I like Luster NOW! Instant Whitening Toothpaste.

 

Dress in darker colors

Creating a stronger contrast between your outfit and your smile can instantly make your teeth appear brighter.  Wearing something in the white family can make your teeth look dull or yellowed.  Opt for darker colors- navy, black, etc.  The large contrast in color will make your teeth (and eyes!) look brighter.

 

Bronzer is a girl’s best friend

Ever notice that when you have a fresh tan your teeth look super white?  Again, it’s all about contrasting colors.  If you’re feeling a little pale, give a light sweep of bronzer to the areas where the sun would touch you first (top of forehead, cheek bones, nose, and chin) for a natural sun-kissed glow.

 

Hues of Blue

The next two tips are for the lips.  Applying the right lip color is key since it will directly contrast your teeth (if done properly).  Find shades of pink or red or berry that best work with your skin tone and then make sure they have blue undertones.  This also means looking for ‘cool’ tones.   There are two types of undertones in cosmetics: warm or cool.   Warm tones are your yellows and oranges.  Cool tones are your blues.   Finding blue tones means spotting the colors that seem cool, without the presence of any orange or yellow.  MAC’s Ruby Woo has been a cult favorite for years.

 

Finishing Gloss

Finish off your total look with a blue lip gloss.  Yup, I said BLUE lip gloss.  Don’t worry; you won’t walk around looking like you just devoured a blue raspberry slushie.  Blue glosses are tinted blue but appear clear when applied.  This finishing touch will totally make your smile appear whiter.   Creator of IT Cosmetic, Jamie Kern Lima, created this blue lip gloss because she was a News Anchor and knew how important a white smile was for the TV business (and knew the secrets to getting one!).   If you’re looking for the appearance of fuller lips AND a whiter smile, try DuWop Blue Venom Lip Gloss.

 

With these 5 easy tips, bring the confidence back to your smile—it is your best accessory 😉

5 Easy Tips for a Natural Makeup Look

(Image Credit: Denis Komarov)

(Image Credit: Denis Komarov)

The ‘au natural’ look has been and will always be a classic look in the world of beauty.  To me, there’s nothing better than letting your own beautiful features stand out. We are currently deep into a time of some really cool, edgy makeup trends, which are awesome, but not every occasion calls for a dramatic winged eyeliner, contour, and eyebrows on fleek. Instead, here are some tips to achieve that “I woke up like this” look for the more dressed down occasions. (If you already wake up looking like this, major kudos girl, but for the rest of us, take notes.)

Start with a Light Base

Going au natural does not involve using ‘full coverage’ anything. Instead you’ll want to use a light to medium coverage (preferably powder) foundation to gently sweep across your face. A tinted moisturizer, CC or BB cream is perfect too. With a light base, we are aiming to cover any imperfections, redness, and color correct without layering it on. Freckles and beauty marks should still be seen! Test the color on your wrist—that skin is the most similar to your face so you’ll get the closet color match for a natural base.

Born-With Brows

Many of us have suffered from having OPB at some point of our lives. That’s “Over-Plucked Brows.”  They never grow back the same and definitely leave patches that we must fill in, right?  Going au natural means none of that airbrushed, perfectly even brow game we’ve been playing.  Use a brow powder and brush or a brow gel (one with added fibers is even better) to lightly brush through your natural brow shape.  Always use a shade lighter than your brows. Brush brows upward and secure in place with clear mascara. The messy look is super cute and remember, they’re sisters—not twins!

Eyeshadow

Keep the colors simple and light on your lids – as close to your natural skin color as possible, with no sparkles or shimmer. Go a little lighter on the inner lid and then a couple shades darker in your crease. Blend!

Simple Liner

Use a shade of brown eyeliner (black if you have black hair) and brush it gently along the lash line. You will barely see it, but this will fill in your lashes and add a subtle finish to the eye. A thick line will not do and be sure to keep the bottom lash line clear!

Lashes

Use a lash curler and a lighter shade of mascara (black if you have black hair).  Apply one coat on the top and one on the bottom. We’re not going for dramatic lashes here.  We’re not going for dramatic anything, really, just beautiful, natural you. This will give a little fullness to your lashes and extend them without being too much.

Sweep of Color

Gently brush a baby pink blush or a light matte bronzer on the apples of your cheeks. This works to bring out a little color in your face that looks like a natural glow.

Pouty Lips

Find a tinted gloss or tinted balm in a shade similar to but just a touch darker or pinker than your own lips. Along with the simplicity of makeup, this will make your lips appear pouty and luscious.

All of these techniques call for gentle and subtle touches.  Remember, you are just highlighting the natural beauty you were born with.  Stick to neutral shades and matte finishes.  You will be surprised at how quickly you can achieve this look that this might turn into your new go-to makeup routine.   Good luck, beauties!

Fashionable Coats that Won’t Break the Bank

(Image Credit: Topshop)

(Image Credit: Topshop)

We can all finally stop with the “winter is coming” puns, because guess what? Winter is finally here! Although it might not feel like it with all the abnormally warm weather, the season is upon us. This means it’s time to ready your cold-weather gear. Not prepared? No problem! Check out these coats for something trendy that won’t break the bank, all coming in under $200.

1. Bomber

Bomber jackets are everywhere this season. This green one from ASOS will add warmth while still keeping your outfit looking sporty.

2. Wrap

Wrap coats are a super easy way to dress up an outfit and look put together when you might not be underneath. Throw it on, tie, and you’re set! Check out this versatile wrap coat from H&M.

3. Parka

There’s no reason you should have to sacrifice warmth for fashion. Parkas that cinch in at the waist are a great option if you don’t want to completely lose your figure! This parka from American Eagle has an extra cozy faux fur collar.

4. Faux Fur

Speaking of faux fur: it’s warm and fuzzy and feels like you’re wearing a blanket out in public. What’s not to love? Get full-on faux fur for a less than full-on price from TJ Maxx.

5. Cape

Capes are very on trend at the moment. They might seem tricky to pull off at first, but stick to one with neutral colors and a basic pattern, like this one from ASOS, and you’ll have no problem.

6. Faux Suede

Faux suede jackets look luxurious and can be worn in a ton of different ways. This one from Nordstrom in a charcoal brown is perfect to throw over any outfit.

7. Trench

You can never go wrong with a classic trench coat. They can be dressed up or down and look great with just about anything. This Calvin Klein trench is a small investment for a coat that will never go out of style.

8. Duster

If you’re a fan of menswear-inspired styles, a duster coat is the choice for you. The structured, boxy silhouette of this one from Topshop is balanced out by a softer wool fabric.

9. Biker

A good [p]leather biker jacket never goes out of style. The quilted material on this Topshop biker jacket adds interest while still keeping an edgy vibe.

10. Fringe

Feeling more western-inspired? A fringe jacket like this on-trend suede jacket from Forever 21 might be for you. It’s not the warmest option on the list, but it will definitely add a whole new dimension to a look.

Let us know which of these styles are must-have items for you, and hurry up and grab a new winter coat (or maybe a few) before it gets too cold out!

AshleeeyBash: Niall Horan + Selena Gomez?! #VSFashionShow. Saint West! Oh, my!

(Image Credit: Ashley Bulayo / The Daily Quirk)

(Image Credit: Ashley Bulayo / The Daily Quirk)

It’s December 9 (AKA CHRISTMAS IS REALLY SOON) and THIS is what’s been happening allover my feed lately. We got the whole Niall + Selena rumors, Victoria Secret Fashion Show, Remakes, Saint West AND MORE. Thanks for letting me do this guys. THIS IS AWESOME.

How to Combat Dry, Dull Winter Skin

(Image Credit: Triocean)

(Image Credit: Triocean)

With winter upon us, it’s only natural to start feeling those winter blues—and boy are we feeling it.  From the shorter hours of daylight to the dropping temperatures, it’s easy to fall into a slump.  The worst part – our body starts to look as dull as we feel. I’m talking about the dreaded WINTER SKIN.  You know, the dry, flaky, sometimes bumpy skin we desperately try to bring the life back into with endless amounts lotions and creams.  We all hate it but it can’t be avoided, right?  Wrong!  I’m sharing some simple beauty tips to bring the glow back into your skin and to warm up your look this holiday season.

The main reason for “winter skin” is the lack of sun, lack of moisture in the air, and cold, dry temperatures.  Here’s a few ways we can reverse the effects:

 

Don’t take HOT showers

I know the feeling—you just wake up and it’s so cold getting out of bed.  You step into an even colder bathroom.  You hop into the shower and now you’re freezing!  A super hot shower will certainly warm you right up.  DON’T DO IT!  Hotter temperatures on dry skin will only dry out your skin even more!  I’m talking dry to the point of flakiness!  Save your skin and stick with a warm shower.

 

Scrub Scrub Scrub

While you’re in that warm shower, make sure you exfoliate!  Exfoliating helps remove dead, dry skin and regenerate new skin cells.  Use a sugar scrub to buff away dull skin.  Salt scrubs tend to be a little rougher and can dry out your skin.  Try to stick to a sugar based scrub.  There are homemade remedies you can make, or I like Fresh Brown Sugar Body Polish, available at Nordstrom.

 

MOISTURIZE

This is the most important and probably the most obvious.  Winter skin is mainly caused by lack of moisture, so we need to put that moisture back.  Find the right moisturizers that cater to what you want to target.  Whether you have itchiness, redness, dry and flaky skin, or combination skin, read the labels to see what ingredients work best for you.  I’ve even had great success with organic coconut oil.  It absorbs quickly and doesn’t leave you feeling greasy.  This is a step you’ll have to do at least once a day – on your WHOLE BODY.  After your shower is the best time.  I use Aveeno Active Naturals Daily Moisturizer, available at your local drug store.

As for your face, depending on your skin type, find a product that works best for what you need.  I like anything that contains hyaluronic acid.  Hyaluronic acid holds A THOUSAND TIMES its weight in water—which means it will really lock in the moisture.  I like Eco Beauty’s Good Day Moisturizer.  Don’t forget a good nighttime moisturizer too!  I use Eco Beauty’s Good Night Moisturizer, both available at LAFreshgroup.com/eco-beauty

 

Add moisture to your air

Get a small humidifier for your living space.  Even if it’s just in your bedroom, this will help add moisture to the air, thus your body will see the effects of it. You can find all sizes available on Amazon.

Now that your skin is feeling pretty normal again, here are some tips to bring the glow back during the dark days of winter:

 

 

Brighten up the base

Use a foundation or CC Cream that has some sort of light shimmer or glow to it.  I use IT Cosmetics CC+ Illumination.  Not only does it correct color, it adds a soft glow without being sparkly.  It brings this refreshing warmth out from in your face—people will stop you and tell you you’re glowing and demand to know why.  New job? Proposal? Nope—just a beauty secret!

 

Highlight your face

Brush a highlighter on the points of your face where natural light hits – your cheekbones, nose, and forehead – and a dab above your top lip and along your chin.  This will add the effect of soft light radiating along your face, creating the look of a sun-kissed glow.  I use Too-Faced Candlelight Glow Duo Highlighting Powder.

 

Pop of color

Whether it be with a soft blush or a bold lip, winter is great for lush pinks, dark reds, and bold berry tones.  Have fun and brighten up your skin with a pop of color.

 

Feeling pale?

I personally embrace my skin color change from bronze to porcelain when the seasons change.  It’s fun to rock a new look.  But if you are feeling like you need a touch of color, don’t head to the tanning beds.  Try a sunless tanning lotion that is safer and easy to do right at home.   I like St. Tropez Self Bronzing Mouse for a tan that lasts about a week or St. Tropez One Night Only Instant Glow Body Lotion for those special occasions you need quick results.   I have had the most success with St. Tropez.  No streaking and no terrible odor.  It’s quick and easy to use, but as always, follow the instructions thoroughly.

 

With these beauty tips, winter skin CAN be beat.  Our winter blues will turn into warm winter hues and we can glow right into spring.

The 5 Best Products for Shaping Your Eyebrows

(Image Credit: Miya227)

(Image Credit: Miya227)

2015 has been the year of the eyebrows. Everyone seems to have suddenly remembered what great things eyebrows can do for your face! A strong brow really does frame the face — anyone who’s seen edited photos of celebrities without eyebrows would agree — and can seriously change your look for the better. Check out these products to see which options might be right for you!

 

Hourglass Arch Brow Sculpting Pencil

A brow pencil is the most obvious choice. There are lots of different shades to choose from, they’re easy to control, and they can look as natural or artificial as you want. This pencil by Hourglass is one of my favorites because of its shape; since it’s already on an angle, you don’t have to put too much effort into creating hair-like strokes.

 

Benefit Gimme Brow

This kind of product is perfect for someone who wants to achieve a quick, natural look. Gimme Brow is a tinted gel with fibers that volumize the brows. Comb through brow hairs, focusing on areas that need a bit more filling in. You’ll get added volume without looking like you’ve spent the last hour painting product on your face.

 

Anastasia Dipbrow Pomade

If your goal is to have a flawlessly executed brow, look no further than this brow pomade. You’ll need to pair it with an angled brow brush, and make sure you go easy on the product application! With a light hand, fill in spaces with tiny brush strokes to mimic hairs. Once you’re done, comb through with a spoolie to spread the product evenly. This will last you through a day at the office or an intense cardio session at the gym.

 

Sigma Brow Powder

This product is also a great one if you’re going for a more subtle look. Like the brow pomade, you’ll need an angled brush to pick up the product and mimic brow hairs with small strokes. However, this option isn’t as “permanent” and is a bit easier to control and fix up if you make a mistake. Plus, each duo comes with one light and one dark shade, so you can focus them in different areas depending on how intense you want your look to be.

 

NXY Control Freak Eyebrow Gel

If you want to set your look in place, or if you just want to keep your natural brow hairs from moving around too much, using a clear brow gel is the way to go. It will keep everything in place without the appearance of adding on any more product, and this one won’t leave you with a shiny coating.

 

Be sure to let us know if you try any of these out, and comment below with other brow products you’ve been loving!

What’s the Big Deal About…Fabletics

There are monthly subscription services for basically everything these days, so it was only a matter of time before athletic gear got tossed into the mix. You may have heard about Fabletics, a monthly subscription service for fashionable workout apparel, but you may have some questions or hesitations about committing to signing up. I’m going to give you the rundown of everything Fabletics to help you determine if the service is right for you.

What it is: Fabletics features an online shop with a variety of workout gear including tops, leggings, sports bras, shorts, jackets, and even accessories. You can purchase individual products on their own, or you can choose to purchase a full “outfit,” which is a pre-selected combination of 2-4 Fabletics items carefully chosen to work together perfectly.

When you sign up, you take a short quiz that helps Fabletics determine which outfits are best suited to your needs, but you’re welcome to purchase any outfits, not just your top picks.

(Image Credit: Fabletics)

(Image Credit: Fabletics)

How it works: You can purchase items or outfits as a guest at their full price, or you can register as a VIP member, which gives you a discount on all Fabletics merchandise.

The catch? Once you register as a VIP, Fabletics will send you a message at the beginning of each month linking you to their new monthly outfits. You can choose to purchase an outfit, or, if nothing strikes your fancy, you can skip the month – but you only have until the 5th of the month to select the “skip” option, or your credit card will get charged $49.95 and you will be given an equivalent credit on your account to use at any time.

You can cancel your VIP membership at any time, but unlike other subscription services (like Birchbox), you need to call and speak to customer service; you can’t just cancel over the web.

As a VIP, you earn rewards points for each dollar you spend and for each product review you post. Your reward points can be redeemed for specific items in the Fabletics shop – there are a variety of reward item options at varying point levels.

(Image Credit: Fabletics)

(Image Credit: Fabletics)

Quality and Price: Fabletics gear is high quality and sturdy. It’s not quite Lululemon, but it’s definitely a step up from what you’ll find at Target. The prices are in line with that – you won’t be spending $100 on a pair of yoga pants, but you are looking at around $40-$60 for a pair of pants at the non-membership price. VIPs are looking at about $30 for the same pair.

Outfits run around $50-90 for VIPs depending on the amount and type of pieces included, but outfit prices increase significantly if you’re not a VIP – for example, an outfit that costs a VIP $79.95 is $139.90 for a non-member.

(Image Credit: Fabletics)

(Image Credit: Fabletics)

What are the outfits like?: Pretty much all outfits include a top and a bottom of some kind, whether it’s shorts and a tank or compression crops and a sweatshirt. Some outfits offer a third piece, like a sports bra or a jacket, and occasionally you’ll find 4 piece outfits with headbands or other accessories included.

Outfits are added monthly with new pieces and updated patterns. There are some standby items (like the salar capri) that is consistently available, but the colors and prints offered change based on the month. Other pieces are specific to a particular month or season and are unavailable after they sell out.

The patterns and designs are usually really cute and fashionable, but you do have to be mindful of fashion vs. function. Most fabletics pieces are intended for both, but they do offer “athleisure” pieces that might not hold up to intense activity. You’ll find that some months the new outfits are full of adorable and fun new ideas, while others are a little less exciting – but it balances out when you skip a few months but then have a month where you want all the outfits.

(Image Credit: Fabletics)

(Image Credit: Fabletics)

What I Like: The quality for the VIP price is quite high for Fabletics, and I’ve yet to receive a piece that’s a total dud. The website features a really useful (and active!) section of user reviews and fit surveys to help you determine what items will work for you and what size to select. The only bummer about it is that you won’t find any reviews on brand new pieces, so you have to take a chance. That said, Fabletics does have a very simple return process if you do happen to get something that totally doesn’t work for you.

The concept of pre-determined outfits is great if you want a little help putting together a look, but you also have the freedom to mix and match colors and patterns within the outfit you pick, so you don’t have to order an outfit exactly as is if you are more interested in the individual pieces than the overall look.

I really like how often Fabletics mixes up their colors, patterns and styles, and their pieces often have unique details that make them feel special. I like the freedom of being able to get the VIP deals a few times a year but not having a commitment to buy every month.  I don’t have any problem remembering to skip months (Fabletics sends an email on the 1st of the month, which serves as a great reminder), so I’ve never run into trouble with having my card charged when I wasn’t expecting it.

(Image Credit: Fabletics)

(Image Credit: Fabletics)

What I Don’t: The reward system is just okay. It used to be that once you reached a certain amount of points, you could trade them in for a full Fabletics outfit of your choice. Now that points are traded for single items, it does feel like you get less for your points, and you don’t have as many options to pick from. I also find that the items available for rewards are often sold out in most colors/sizes, further limiting your options.

I hate hate HATE that you have to call to cancel, and I’ve heard that customer service can be a huge pain about canceling. I’ve also heard from people who had no trouble canceling, though, so it might just depend on who you talk to.

(Image Credit: Fabletics)

(Image Credit: Fabletics)

Bottom Line: Fabletics is a great service if you like variety in your workout gear and value the combination of style and functionality. However, if you’re not planning on taking the VIP route, the price might outweigh the novelty. And if you do  take the VIP route, make sure you’re comfortable with the responsibility of checking in at the beginning of each month in case you want to skip.

 

The Fall 2015 Beauty Trends You Need to Know!

(Image Credit: Soup Studio)

(Image Credit: Soup Studio)

As hard as it may be to admit, Summer 2015 is quickly coming to an end. While a lot of you might be most excited for pumpkin everything, what I’m looking forward to is the new wave of fall beauty trends. Put away your neon lipsticks and dark bronzers and check out what new makeup looks we’re eager to try this season! Continue reading

An Interview with Jewelry Designer Jane Basch

An Interview with Jewelry Designer Jane Basch

In the midst of the craze and bustle that was New York Fashion Week 2014, Jane Basch stood gracefully beside her showcase of beautifully designed jewelry, doing what she does best—making it personal. She connected with each and every guest at the event, making you really feel the bright energy that is Jane Basch Jewelry Designs, her brand of precious, personalized jewelry. Continue reading

Ashleeeybash: What I’m Bringing to Bumbershoot 2015

(Image Credit: Ashley Bulayo / The Daily Quirk)

(Image Credit: Ashley Bulayo / The Daily Quirk)

I’ll be heading to Bumbershoot this weekend and I’m so excited! I’ve never been to Seattle so to experience a new city and a new festival will be interesting. I promise I’ll document it all in a vlog (I mean, if you care) I wanted to do this quick video to show you what I bring when traveling but this is just the really, really important stuff. I didn’t bother documenting the obvious stuff like towels, shampoo and other great necessities. I hope you enjoy! Oh, and if you’re hitting it up let me know down below! Continue reading