2/19/18

My Favorite Slimming Leggings in Camo Print + The Books I've Finished



Sweatshirt - The North Face (wearing an XS) | Leggings - Spanx (I wear a size S) | Sneakers - APL | Water bottle - S'well | iPhone case - Edie Parker | Hat - Nordstrom

I'm already crazy over these faux leather leggings that I've been wearing on the blog for the past year (see them styled here, here and here), so I knew I had to finally get the same style in camo print. And do they fit as well? Yup. They have insane stretch to them but manage to slim the legs without ever making them feel smothered or constricted. I have a few other brands of leggings that are slimming, but these are by far the best of the best. I joke that these Spanx leggings give me new legs. LOL My only complaint is that I wish they would offer a cropped version because they are always too long for my short inseam. But that is definitely not a deal breaker when they are this flattering. 

I have been on a book listening spree this past month! Each night in the few hours before I put Miles to bed, I keep an audiobook on speaker while I'm playing with him or walking him around in the Solly wrap.  Here are the books I've finished the past few weeks:

1. The River at Night - This book made me actually gasp out loud while I was listening to it, and then promptly burst into tears. It's captivating and an emotional roller coaster (but those kind of books are the best kind). It's a story of 4 best friends that go on a white water rafting adventure in Maine. The story takes a while to get going, but once it does it flows as fast as the rapids they are traveling on. Be prepared to stay up all night with this one.

2. The Secrets She Keeps - After just having Miles, this book hit very close to home. It's the story of Agatha and Meghan, two strangers whom are both pregnant but soon develop an unlikely friendship after meeting at the grocery store where Agatha works. Meghan thinks their friendship is genuine but sadly Agatha has different motives. I can't share much more without giving it all away, but the story is heart wrenching and leaves me feeling sorry for both characters in different ways.

3. The Surrogate - I expected this to be a bit more of a scary thriller, but it wasn't. I still really enjoyed it but it moved at a less intense pace. The main character reunites with an old friend from her childhood who graciously offers to be her surrogate. But the relationship with this friend is one wrought with grief, tragedy and secrets. Those secrets reveal themselves as the pregnancy progresses, but the ending was a complete shocker for me.

4. The Marriage Lie - Iris and Will seem to have a picture perfect marriage, until Will leaves for a business trip, his plane crashes and all the passengers are killed. The odd thing is that Will was never supposed to be on that plane so Iris is left trying to figure out exactly who her husband was and what secrets he was keeping from her. Nothing that will keep you on the edge of your seat, but definitely a good read that moves along at a good pace.

5. One Perfect Lie - This was an absolute snoozefest for the first few chapters, but once I was a quarter of the way in it began to get good. Chris Brennan moves to a small town to be a high school teacher and assistant baseball coach. However, Chris' entire life is a lie and his motives for working at the school have a much more frightening reason. This book did keep me guessing from chapter to chapter, though the ending was a bit of a letdown unfortunately.

6. Little Fires Everywhere - This book is a series of relationships and encounters that almost have a domino effect on the story and characters. It takes place in a idyllic upscale community called Shaker Heights, and chronicles what seems to be the perfect suburban family, the Richardsons. When they rent out one of their rental properties to Mia Warren and her daughter Pearl, so begins the intricate relationships and problems that begin to upset their picture perfect life. A high profile adoption case in the community prompts Mrs. Richardson to look into Mia's past which reveals many devastating secrets. Slowly the dominos begin to fall and relationships crumble, family bonds are tested and Mrs. Richardson is left to deal with it's effect on one of her daughters. A powerful read with so many layers. However, the ending was so abrupt and left me literally with my mouth open and feeling so frustrated. That doesn't mean I didn't love it but I would have liked a more concrete ending where things were resolved.

Read all my previous book reviews here.

Shop more pullovers perfect for weekends and working out:


2/15/18

The 3 Makeup Products I Use Every Single Day

Today's blog post features nothing new, no fancy spring launches but I frankly cannot do my makeup without either of these 3 products. These are the workhorses in my routine that I would never give up, but aren't as fun to talk about as lipsticks, highlighters or eyeshadow palettes. Ha! But they are nonethless essential.

1. Beautyblender - I never really got the hype surrounding Beautyblender but then my skin began to get drier and drier while pregnant and I found myself reaching for it all the time. Now I cannot do my makeup without it. I use it to apply my foundation, blend blush, highlighter, smooth out concealer, touch up midday if I need to - it always gives a flawless application.

2. Urban Decay Primer Potion - I have been using eyeshadow primer for as long as I have been wearing makeup (that is a longggg time). Though I sometimes rotate in the NARS Smudgeproof Base, I always go back to the Urban Decay Primer Potion. I have forgotten it on trips and had to head to a local Sephora to pick up one because it I can't do my eye makeup without it. It helps my eye shadow go on smoother, not crease and last all day.

3. Hourglass Arch Brow Sculpting Pencil - Brows are the most important feature on my face in my opinion. I get them threaded every 2.5 weeks like clockwork (I even went the day that I went into labor #priorities).  I have tried numerous other brow tools and occasionally will rotate them into my routine thinking I have found a new favorite, only to go running back to my Hourglass one. The formula is smooth and not too waxy, the color is more gray based which works with my dark hair (I wear Ash and Soft Brunette) the shape of the tool is perfect for filling in but not drawing too dramatic of a brow, and the spoolie is the best one I have ever used. Even if I try other brands, I will keep my Hourglass spoolie nearby because nothing ever rivals how evenly it brushes out the color and how well it keeps my brows groomed.

Shop more products that I use in my daily routine:


2/14/18

An Unexpected Color Combination

Sweater - Leith (shade is Coral Cedar) | Jeans - AG | Bag - Saint Laurent (amazing budget option here) | Boots - Stuart Weitzman (love this budget option that is on major sale!!) | Hat - J.Crew

Happy Valentine's Day! I'm not wearing a traditional red shade in today's post, but at least it's in the same color family. Kind of. LOL I love to have fun with fashion and experiment here and there, but on the whole I tend to stick to safer color combinations. When I ordered this sweater, I thought for sure I would wear it with black or brown boots/accessories. And then it arrived and I tried on a ton of boot options and wasn't jazzed by any of them. Then I decided to throw on my burgundy boots just for fun and I loved it! I splurged on this color 3 years ago and was worried I would never find enough pieces in my closet to wear with them, but that has actually never been the case. I am constantly finding ways to wear them which makes me so happy that I ventured out of my black/brown boot box. If you need additional styling ideas for a burgundy or maroon shoe/boot, here is a look back at other colors I have worn with these boots (here, here and here).

What color accessories do you gravitate towards besides black and brown?

Shop more basic chunky sweaters:


2/13/18

Space NK Spring Beauty Edit GWP + Recommendations

Space NK just released their Spring Beauty Edit GWP. See all the details below and the contents of the bag. Enjoy and don't forget to subscribe!

Spend $275 and receive this GWP worth over $500. Enter "SPRING18" when checking out to receive your bag. Find the bag here.

My 10 recommendations:

Diptyque Rose Delight Candle (this is a must!)
By Terry Game Lighter Palette (this looks stunning)
Sunday Riley Good Genes (I'm never without a bottle)
Best of Space NK Edit (this is such a great set!)
Tata Harper Regenerating Cleanser (I've been through countless bottles of this - so amazing!)
REN Bio Retinoid Cream (this is the cream that I've raved about for years! Amazing at anti-aging and breakouts!)
By Terry Rouge Expert Click Stick (gorgeous matte lipstick formula)

2/12/18

Easy Date Night Look + 3 Valentine's Date Ideas



Shirt - Enza Costa | Jacket - HM (similar here)  | Jeans - Free People | Shoes - Manolo Blahnik (great budget option here) | Lipstick - Tom Ford Dylan | Bag - Gucci

I know, I know...Valentine's Day is a gimmicky holiday fueled by the greeting card companies or something like that, right? I personally have never been opposed to recognizing or celebrating Valentine's Day whether I was in a relationship or single. Gifts weren't necessary but I do enjoy the idea of celebrating love - love for your significant other, your kids, yourself, your pets, LOVE in general! Yay love! Frankly, the world needs more of it, ya know? Stan and I have switched it up over the years from fancy dinners, to nights in, gifts, no gifts - it's never the same each year which is kind of nice. So I thought I would share 4 date ideas (that don't actually have to take place on the day) but can be fun ways to celebrate with those you love (significant other, child, pet or just yourself). Stan and I have done all these over the years and while they aren't groundbreaking ideas, it's nice to be deliberate sometimes and go the extra mile to have a good time and make memories.

1. Get all dressed up in your fanciest clothes.....and then stay in. Ha! Fooled ya, didn't I? You know those clothes in your closet that you bought for "special occasions" which only end up getting worn once or twice ever? Put them on! You need to wear something around the house (unless you live naked #nojudgement), so why not make it fun and put on those clothes you never wear. Either cook a meal together or order take out, but something about getting spruced up can be so fun. And if you have kids, let them get involved too! It doesn't have to be perfect, but a little extra effort can really make the time together special.

2. Go be tourists for a day. This used to be one of our favorite things to do back in NYC because it was so easy to do. And as I said, Valentine's Day doesn't necessarily have to be celebrated on February 14th so this could be done on a day that works better for your schedules. Stan and I still love to visit tourist spots near us, see all the attractions and check it off our list. Sometimes we forget to take advantage of these popular places that we have so accessible to us, but it can be so much fun to be a tourist in your own city. 

3. Take a day trip somewhere beautiful, take pictures of yourselves...and then don't share them on social media. Ha, fooled ya again! Typical blogger suggesting you go somewhere and take pictures of each other (or your family), but if there is one thing I do love about blogging is that it's a visual record. Visit a local mountain and hike to the top, head to the beach, go to a local park - whatever it is make sure it's visually beautiful and then just use your phone to take photos of each other and also together (ask a stranger or do it selfie style). Then come home, print them out and frame them! Don't share them on social media, let them be something you have for yourselves that you can put up in your home. If you have a fancy camera great, but frankly it's not about the quality of the photos, it's about the deliberate action of going somewhere beautiful, taking in the surroundings and then capturing the moment to enjoy for years to come. 

Told you, these ideas are not fancy or exceptionally unique but sometimes it's the simplest things that we overlook or forget. What are some of your favorite ways to celebrate? 

Shop more easy to wear date night tops:


2/10/18

Current Favorites: Beauty, Home Decor + Shoes!

My monthly favorites is now up. Enjoy the video and don't forget to subscribe!

The products mentioned in the video:

Post featuring the faux fur throw
My Friday Finds series
UGG boots (currently 50% off! - I took my regular size)
Blog post of how I styled the UGG boots
Drunk Elephant brand review video
Blog post review of the Tatcha cleanser
Blog post reviewing more of the Vanish Flash Highlighting Stick shades

2/8/18

The Most Gorgeous Shimmer Shadows for Spring: Stila Shimmer & Glow Liquid Eye Shadow


Do you ever wet your favorite shimmer powder eyeshadow and wish it could be a liquid? You want the shimmer and metallic finish but not the glittery bits. Yup, me too. Stila must have heard us because these new Shimmer & Glow Liquid Eye Shadows are just that. They look like liquid metal on the eyes but without chunks of glitter, cracking throughout the day or uneven application woes.
Of course there are a plethora of vibrant shades for a more colorful preference, but I picked up 4 of the neutral colors. #nosurprisethere From the first swatch, I was in love! They are creamy but not too emollient, give a brilliant shine to the lid but don't make it look crepey and are so easy to blend. I loved the Stila Glitter & Glow shadows but they were a bit too bold for day because of the intense glitter chunks (I actually prefer to wear mine along the lash line as a liner). However, these Shimmer & Glow shadows are still quite bold but when applied with a light hand and blended out they can be worn during the day. They are long wearing even without using an eyeshadow base and I didn't have any problems with creasing or cracking. I can apply powder shadow over top but prefer to wear them alone.
Swatches from left to right: Starlight, Kitten, Jezebel, Carefree
Out of all 4 shades, Kitten was my favorite (it's the perfect beige-y champagne!), followed by Starlight which is a touch more gold, Jezebel which looked much darker on me but is still a gorgeous bronze, and Carefree which is a delicate rosy pink but not a shade that I prefer to wear. I apply them from the applicator directly onto the eye and then blend out with either my finger or a fluffy blending brush.

Overall these were a major win for me and I absolutely love the formula! I highly recommend giving these a go for your spring makeup wardrobe.

Shop more Stila products that I love:


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