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Brand Spotlight: Cornwall Soapbox of St. Ives, United Kingdom

14925316_10207466440282416_4090907321445124129_nA few weeks ago, I had the amazing opportunity to tour an extensive part of the United Kingdom with my mom. We went around England, Wales, and Scotland, spending time in the biggest cities, tiny farm towns, mountains, and seaside stops. One afternoon, we pulled up at a drizzly and misty place called St. Ives in Cornwall, and soon the gray, poetic clouds soon turned into hours of torrential rain. What was my first thought? “My soaps! They’re gonna melt!”  Continue Reading »

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3 Totally Honest Kylie Lip Kit Reviews

Screenshot 2016-06-24 at 10.02.37 PM.pngI’ll admit it: I’m totally, 100% completely in on this Kylie Cosmetics hype right now. For months, I have been covering Kylie Jenner‘s makeup company updates and all of the new product launches for my job, and one day I decided to order myself a highly buzzed-about Lip Kit to see what it was all about. That purchase lead me to happily entering my credit card info and buying two more packs, and now I’m here to share my totally honest experience with three shades. What I wasn’t expecting was that there would be three completely different things to say about each product I ordered.  Continue Reading »

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Book Review Roundup: This Raging Light + Truly Madly Famously

Need some fun new YA summer beach reads? Recommendations coming right up! Check out some of the latest excerpts from my most recent review contributions to Miss Literati within:  Continue Reading »

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A Comprehensive Guide to Building a Work Wardrobe


The most common questions I get asked as the Designated Fashion Friend in my peer circles have something to do with my work wardrobe. Over the years, I’ve worked at a whole variety of office jobs, including everything from desk jobs where you answer phones and greet guests to the kinds where you’re on your feet for hours, unpacking boxes, or dealing with clients. In the same span of time, I’m proud to say that I’ve finally cultivated a work wardrobe that’s up for any challenge thrown at it, and still shows off some of my personal fashion sense. Don’t worry: I’m not keeping tight-lipped about it. I love sharing tips and tricks with anyone who asks, and have decided to compile a more comprehensive guide for fashionable folks at every style level.  Continue Reading »

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Book Review Roundup: Immaculate + The Wrong Side Of Right

No matter how busy I get, I always find time to read a few pages of a book each day. Sometimes I find myself nodding off to sleep while trying to squeeze in a few chapters late at night, and other times I’m wide awake as I get through a thrilling novel. Or then there are the days I try to forget about car sickness and make use of my bus time by skimming some passages. I’ve also started writing young adult book reviews at work, for one of our sister sites Miss Literati, just so I have an excuse to keep up with the latest releases and motivation to get through to the end. Allow me to share a few excerpts from reviews I’ve been doing lately:  Continue Reading »

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Things I’ve Never Told Anyone About My Hair

Me today, grown out hair and some festive Halloween makeup

I hit a bit of a milestone today. Was it a big, life-changing moment in all of history? Well… no. But it marked a major moment in a personal hair journey that so few people have even known I was on. I want to tell an open and honest story, which seems a little silly to even me since it’s just about hair. Before you shrug off my experiences, hear me out for a spell: I promise I’m about to take you on an unexpected ride.

So, this morning, I was styling my hair into a festive Halloween look when I realized that you can no longer see the short, formerly-shaved side of my hair. It’s something my friends have been pointing out a lot recently, because they’re seeing it in pictures, but today was the first time I saw it for myself.  Continue Reading »

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The Evolution of a Pura Vida Bracelets Addiction

You know the brands. There are just some fashion companies out there that are fabulous at promoting their stuff on social media. They share beautiful Instagram pics showcasing the products, and you find that you just can’t stop double tapping on your snaps. That’s how I first heard of Pura Vida Bracelets. Friends of friends shared #armparty pics and I found that the dainty woven friendship braids around their wrists actually had a huge story behind them – and I just had to get involved somehow. Continue Reading »

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This Claire’s Collar Necklace Makes Every Outfit Instantly Cooler

Accessorization is the key to making any outfit great. That being said, it’s the part of dressing that I personally struggle with most. I admit that I get lazy when it comes to polishing off a style with jewelry, and if I do try to glam up a boring look, I tend to go overboard piling on one too many rings or a cluttered set of bangles.

Lately I’ve been feeling like I’m in a bit of a style rut, especially when it comes to my work clothes. I keep tossing on the same old dresses I’ve worn for years, struggling to find ways to make them feel modern and like where my personal style has evolved to at this moment in time. I finally found that the easiest way to make my outdated styles look like the new duds I’m drooling over in current lookbooks is by adding my new favorite necklace into the mix.  Continue Reading »

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Book Review: Becoming Maria by Sonia Manzano

9780545621861_p0_v2_s1200x630Sesame Street was such an important part of everyone’s childhood, but what was the real-life actress who played the iconic character Maria like as a kid herself? The show’s very own Sonia Manzano has penned a new memoir, titled Becoming Maria: Love and Chaos in the South Bronx, that tells her personal coming-of-age story — and it gives us all an intimate glimpse into her life growing up in New York in the 1950s and ‘60s.

The star was born and raised in a close-knit Latino neighborhood in the Bronx, where she experienced more than her fair share of heartache and family issues as she began to understand her creative talents and follow her dreams. Though Sonia is known for her time on a happy children’s show, there is barely any mention of her popular role of Maria in this book. The story is more about how she grew into the person she is, and she doesn’t skip over the harsher topics and uncomfortable moments in her life for the sake of telling a more whimsical tale. Her parents’ troubled and dysfunctional relationship, gritty tales of abuse, and her own reflections on race are unexpectedly central points in her story.  Continue Reading »

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LUSH Cosmetics’ #GayIsOk Soap Is Sparkly & Fabulous – For a Cause

If you know anything about me, you know that any cosmetic or accessory that is glittery, sparkly, and dipped in gold is right up my alley. So when that product also comes with a way to help out a huge international rights issue, count me in. One of my favorite bath and body brands, LUSH Cosmetics, just launched a new limited-edition soap bar that reads #GayIsOk in sparkling gold. Not only does the text itself make a bold statement, the brand itself is giving back to LGBTQ-supporting efforts worldwide.  Continue Reading »