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October 2018 Beauty Favorites

geniuspowder_closedfront_3HYDRA BEAUTY Nourishing Lip CareLA CREME MAIN<br />Hand Cream,                         Main,                         color, NO COLORLES PINCEAUX DE CHANEL<br />Rounded Eyeshadow Brush,                         Main,                         color, NO COLOR

Let’s talk beauty! I am somewhat late to the beauty game… for me this means that I used the same items and brands for a long time before branching out. ¬†I have somewhat sensitive skin, so frankly… I was scared to try new stuff. Then I met Bobbi Brown makeup. Now I cannot get enough makeup… people seriously I. LOVE. IT.

Let’s get to the stuff I have been using the last few months….

Bobbi BrownNude:Rosy Nude palette has the colors that BB does best. Great shades of rose, nude, shimmer and sparkle.  Best of all, the base colors are bigger rectangles of love (you all know you use those up first!) I am loving it! The pigments and texture and blend-ability (I might have just made that word up) is excellent.  There is another version of this palette in the brown tones that BB does best.

Chanel Beauty & Skincare: I never thought I would splurge on this lip balm and hand cream but I am happy that I did! I have been on the hunt for both of these for months and I am loving them. ¬†The Hydra Beauty lip balm is the right texture and feeds my lip balm addiction. ¬†The La Creme Main hand cream makes my skin feel so soft each time I can use it… REALLY soft. ¬†I also picked up an eye shadow blending brush that I am loving as well. ¬†I may end up trying more since I am loving my starter items.

Charlotte TilburyCharlotte’s Genius Magic Powder, Magic Away and Rock n’ Kohl Eyeliner. These are my 3 newest additions. ¬†The Eyeliners are smooth to apply and smudge and they stay put the whole day. ¬†Magic Away is my new go-to concealer. ¬†It really works it’s magic on my dark circles. ¬†Not many brands make colors to match my skin, which is important to me as I do not like to go lighter with my concealer- I’d rather match. ¬†Finally, the Magic Powder has a lovely smooth texture. ¬†However, there are only 3 colors and it has an odd smell– not a bad smell, but odd. I am used to having finishing powder that matches my skin color, so I will have to continue mixing the medium and dark colors to meet my skin color.

Hope that this info inspires you to branch out and try new beauty like I have been.  There are some great beauty items out there to explore.  I am currently trying out some new stuff to report to you soon! Please share this post if you know someone who would like it.  I will add links to the items so you can see them for yourself.

Links: 

Thanks for reading! XO, Dawn

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The Fear of Using Our Nice Things…

Hi Everyone-

I was thinking (on my traffic heavy ride home) about some videos and blogs that I have seen about people treating themselves to lovely things, but not using them because they are scared of “ruining” them. My friends and I have talked about this as well. I have suffered this affliction myself. Now that I have the means to actually get an item on my wish list, it has been a dilemma about wanting to use AND preserve my precious goods.

A prime example are my lovely pink suede loafers. I saved and consigned to buy them. I researched caring for the suede… I mean they are pink suede for goodness sakes! I ordered them and purchased suede protection spray & cleaning kit. When I finally got the box in the mail last year, I took them out of the box and tried them on again in my house and sprayed them with the protection spray. Then, I put them back in the dust bags and box and tucked them safely in my closet. A few months later after having my girlfriends ask about them several times and me lovingly describing them to a colleague, I put the shoes on for a day of work. I found myself constantly checking them to see if I got a mark on them….Like every time I sat at my desk! I had such anxiety all day, that upon arriving home that night I put them back into the dust bags and box and into my closet. This happened several times until ultimately I was able to overcome this (FINALLY!) and am wearing them right now as I type.

Gucci Marmont in blush pink suede 
Gucci Pink Suede GG Marmont Loafer Heels

 

Seriously! I am a grown, educated woman and I cannot escape the fear of messing up the stuff that I saved and planned for…. ugh. I felt the same way when I got my lovely Chanel Jumbo… that lovely thing stayed in the safety of its dust bag on the handbag shelf for way longer than it should have…

Jumbo in Caviar Navy with LGHW

 Making sure this lovely is in my rotation! 

I have read posts among my “friends” in handbag groups and I am not alone! I think my personal issue was that I want to take care of my nice stuff (clothes, shoes, handbags, home decor) because I spent my hard-earned money on it. I also think there is so much pressure to things to be in pristine condition if I later decide that it is no longer for me and want to sell it. Part if it is my own fault, because I too look for pre-loved items in excellent condition.

Then I remember that I bought those things because they caught my eye and I could not stop thinking about it… and when I use them it makes me happy, confident and happy. I have decided that I would use my fashion each week… so I can enjoy the things I worked so hard to get…. DON’T BE SCARED…. ENJOY YOUR LOVELY ITEMS!

Please share your thoughts and stories in the comments.

Thanks for reading! Feel free to share with someone who might enjoy this!

XOXO, Dawn

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* Not a sponsored blog unless stated in the title. These are my own opinions and ideas.
Affiliate or referral links used when available.

My Experience in Hermes

Hermes-Palo Alto CA

Everyday in my work, I advocate for equity and social justice. ¬†Then I go out in the world and hope to experience it in my own life. ¬†I have been in love with fashion since I was young and it has blossomed now that I am an adult and can enjoy shopping for the stuff I used to only see in magazines. ¬†Then I went into the Palo Alto, CA Hermes store (pictured above)…

It was a Friday, so I had nice work appropriate dark jeans on, cashmere sweater, Tory Burch ruffle sneakers and my Chanel Jumbo bag. ¬†Not that appearance should matter, but I was presentable with a touch of Luxe. I went in to look mainly at scarves, scarf ring (because I am fancy like that) and to see if they had any watch bands to fancy up my Apple Watch. ¬†I walked in with a smile on my face and said hello¬†to an associate who replied but kept walking by. ¬†I looked for quite a while at the cases with scarves, twillys & scarf rings but no one came over. ¬†I was pretty much a sure sale, yet no one came over. ¬†I took one loop of the store looking at items and one other associate said hi to me, but he too kept walking. ¬†I went back and stood by another case. ¬†There were only 2 other people in the shop that didn’t work there and about 5-6 people who worked there. ¬†Crickets.¬†

So I left and went to Neiman Marcus where my lovely associate at Chanel greeted me and treated me with kindness and I spend my hard-earned money with him. Kindness and respect are everything with me… I have been in retail and know how a customer should be treated. Apparently I didn’t look like I could/should buy anything from their store. ¬†So I will possibly make my Hermes purchase online and continue to shop at the Luxe shops that respect me no matter how they judge my appearance.¬†I have watched some of my favorite You Tubers talk about the stress to get a Berkin or Kelly in the Paris store and are judged by the associate to be selected for a bag. ¬†It is apparently true for many other situations in Hermes on any continent. ¬†It’s just sad. Guess I will stick with my favorites: Chanel, Gucci, Dior and LV. ¬†I have had EXCELLENT service there which is why they are part of my collection.¬†

Thanks for reading! XO, Dawn

 

 

Socks- The Struggle is Real!

Socks are a pain in the foot (or other area that has pain)! You lose them in the laundry (still haven’t figured out where they go in my machines), but even worse than that your shoe eats them while you are wearing them!!! I mean I just can’t even tell you the sock quest I have been on over the years.¬† So here are the ones who have answered some of my sock hopes and dreams.

Bombas Socks  Bombas Brights

Bombas probably has the best fitting socks that I own.  They come in different sizes and styles which is the key for me.  They also hug my high arches and stay on my heel. They wear well throughout the day and wash well. The best part though is that for every pair of socks you buy, they donate a pair to someone in need!!!! This makes my heart squeeze just a little every time I wear mine. They are offering 20% off your first order for women, men or kids.

 Sockwell Graduated Compression   Sockwell Compression Socks

Since I began my struggle with plantar fasciitis, I have lived in compression socks on those painful days. Sockwell Compression Socks have been my relief.  I also wear the graduated compression socks on all flights over 2 hours to support circulation (and you should too!).  Sockwell makes them for both women (in 2 sizes) and men.

Lululemon white

If you consider yourself sporty-spice, you may need some Light Speed socks from Lululemon. The Light Speed has been my sporty sock of choice for years and they come in sizes as well which is a bonus.  Lululemon has sporty socks for both women and men.

Hope this has helped you if you have sock drama like me. If you figure out where to look for the lost ones, please let me know.

Thanks for reading! XO, Dawn

Apple Watch Bands

I am definitely a watch person.¬† I have always used watches as part of my style.¬† I am one of those people who definitely notice when I forget to put my watch on — I constantly look at my empty wrist.¬† I am totally an Apple groupie, so the Apple watch was a must for me.¬† But the band choices were a let down for me.¬† Recently, more stylish versions have come onto the market.¬† I have a 38mm watch due to my skinny wrists.¬† So my reviews are based on use of that size band.

Original Apple Watch Band

Apple Sport Band Pink Sand     watch band collection

 

So the OG rubber watch band is a good basic choice.  There are many colors to pick from in the classic and sport versions.  For me, the adaptability of a small and large strap so it fits my small wrist well. I have a few colors in this band and wear them most days.  My only gripe is that they are not super stylish, so when I dress up it still looks very casual.

Kate Spade

Kate Spade Strap Kate Spade Floral Strap

So my love for all things KSNY is no secret.¬† I love the fun colors and patterns from this iconic women’s brand. So when they started selling bands for Apple Watch, I was so happy! With all the great patterns, I ended up with black with white polka dots.¬† it is also a silicon band, but with a traditional buckle closure. Since I didn’t have a black band, it was a happy addition to my collection.

Casetify

 Casetify Stainless Mesh  Strap     Casetify floral Strap

 

I got a mesh metal band in rose gold from Casetify.  This band helped me to dress up my Apple watch.  There are also great patterns and leather bands from this brand.  They are available from their own site as well as at other retailers.

Custom Bands  YdfD2gpYR0mzIZDdHl6W8A  Etsy Gucci Canvas watch band

So I love watching fashion videos and seeing all of the great IG fashion posts.  I came across custom bands made from old Louis Vuitton and Gucci canvas.  Being a lover of beautiful things made from recycled materials, I thought this would be a great idea.  After a bit of Facebook and Etsy research, I found a few makers that had the bands.  I ended up with a band made from old Gucci canvas with a traditional buckle. The medium length is a bit big for my skinny wrist, but I am able to wear it on the tightest hole available.  They even sent it in a cute pouch. Loving it so far as a part of my Luxe collection.

I love my Apple watch and I rarely wear any of my other watches.  I am glad that more choices are showing up for those who want to step above the plain silicon classic bands.  Hope this info was helpful! I will add links to bands that I have tried and to places where you can find additions to your collection.

Thanks for reading! XO, Dawn

Summer Favorites & Tips for an Enjoyable Vacation

I thought I might try my hand at a favorites list.¬† Since I had so much plan on my trip this summer, I thought I’d do a round-up of my favorites.¬† I admit it… I am a chronic planner/list maker when it comes to travel.¬† So I will also include some of the tricks and tips to make planning a bit easier.¬†¬†

Tip #1- go where the food is!

Basically, due to my husband and my love of food — we plan our trips around where we can get good food and drink.¬† Call me crazy, but a girl’s got to eat! I often rely on my friends & family for referrals and they rarely disappoint! So tip #1 ask your people for ideas.¬† I make a list on my phone (that I share with my travel companions) for easy access on the road.¬†¬†

Tip #2- Packing

So as a person who loves fashion, this one is hard for me.¬† I have already written a post on packing tips, so I won’t go into that kind of detail here.¬† I will just touch on some of the items that I loved using this summer during our Europe travels.¬†

  • Suitcase: A good suitcase is a must! With size and weight requirements and cobble streets, you MUST have a case you can rely on.¬† I know there is some debate between the soft & hard shell camps, but I have found the hard shell to be lighter when empty which means I can bring more stuff. We picked a large Away Suitcase for our 2.5 week trip (of course mine is pink!).¬†
  • Packing support: Flight 001 makes my favorite packing/travel stuff. They are investments, but I have had some key pieces for several years and the cost per use¬† make them worth the cost.¬† My key pieces from Flight 001 are packing cubes, Clear 1 Quart bag and Seatpak (a zip pouch that organizes my carry-on accessories. Links are below.¬†

Tip #3 – Necessary Travel Supports

  • Travel essentials: You will definitely need a plug adapter.¬† Most power cords for our essential electronics are Europe dual voltage (all my Apple stuff), so I just needed the various adapters.¬† The Flight 001 5-in-1 was super handy.¬†
  • Don’t forget your cords for your electronics! If needed, bring an adapter with a converter if your plugs are not the correct voltage.¬†
  • Also, I always take an eye mask for long flights and Flight 001 makes cute ones. Links are below.¬†

Tip #3 The Right Shoes

  • This one was tricky for me of course. I am a shoe lover, but I have plantar faciitis so I know that I have to pick the right shoes when on vacation.¬† One pair are sneakers suggested by Oprah because of their supportive insoles. I got the Splendid Syra Leather model in white.¬† Oprah was right! I also brought a pair of Nike Running shoes. I also brought a pair of Dansko Sandals in pewter and Tory Burch Minnie Travel Flats in black.¬† As a shoe girl, that is slim for me, but they covered all of our occasions and activities.¬†

Women’s Nike Air Presto Se Sneaker, Size 8 M – Grey
Women’s Tory Burch ‘Minnie’ Travel Ballet Flat, Size 8 M – Black
Women’s Dansko Vera Sandal – Metallic
Women’s Vionic Splendid Syra Sneaker- White

I will write about my travel wardrobe (including clothes, handbags and accessories) in a future post. Hope this was helpful! 

 

Thanks for reading! XO, Dawn

Online Shopping Services

I have been using these services for many years now.  The basic premise is that you go online, sign-up for the service and they send you stuff in the mail to try on.  You keep what you like and you send back what you don’t.  It is a win-win for busy people and for those who just don’t like shopping! There are many of these types of services out there.  Here are a few that I have tried and my experiences with them. I will include links so you can check them out for yourself.

Trunk Club

Trunk Club is a Nordstrom Company which is a bonus to the ease of this service because you can use your Nordstrom card and earn Notes.  They send you items (jewelry, clothing, accessories, shoes, etc) and you try them on at home. You keep what you want and send back what you don’t. The service is available for women and men.

So basically, to sign up for the service you fill out a profile about your style (I also linked my Pinterest so my stylist could see it) and schedule a trunk.  The stylist will chat with you through the website or app and ask you what type of items you need.  Most brands sold at Nordstrom are pretty much available.  I have even requested specific brands or items to be included in my trunk. You can even select a theme like wedding guest, workout/active wear or vacation items. They will send you an email with a preview of your trunk and you can say yes or no before the items are sent to you to and request other items they didn’t include.

This service has been the most successful for me.  I already loved shopping at Nordstrom and I now have a great Stylist (my 1st one & I didn’t click so I switched).  The fact that you see the items before they send them is great for me and I have felt like my requests and feedback on the items (you give feedback on what you like or don’t like) and that helps to build a rapport with the stylist. There is a limit on how long you can have the items at your house before you send back what you don’t want, so it is not like buying, thinking about it and returning it to the store–it’s a shorter timeline. I liked that you can either schedule a trunk whenever you want or if you are building a new wardrobe, you can have one sent on a reoccurring basis. 

Stitch Fix

Stitch Fix was the first shopping services I every tried.  I read about it in the style section of the San Francisco Chronicle and knew I wanted to try it. This service has a simple formula: you sign up; fill out a profile; and schedule a “fix”.  They send you 5 items (clothes, shoes and accessories),  you keep what you like and send back what you don’t. There is a $20 styling fee when you scheduled, but that $20 is applied to any purchase you make.  This service is available to women, men and now kids.  They also have maternity for those who need it!

This service was good for a while for me.  I found that after a while I started to get the same items but in different colors/patterns.  I believe that now they have a larger variety of brands that they offer. You are not able to select specific items.  You can give “notes” to your stylist, but ultimately they pick what think you might like.  This was great for me when I moved from the classroom to administrator and I needed more work place style of clothes.  I was able to build a base work wardrobe.  I haven’t been back for a while, but is an easy service to use.

Screen Shot 2018-08-08 at 8.34.06 PM

Thanks for reading! XO, Dawn

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