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Wednesday
Jul172013

what i wore to work | ode to eloquii

 

Eloquii closed up shop just as I was really getting into them. I purchased the blouse and jacket from the site, and I will miss them.

When I saw the top, I thought it may be difficult to find a jacket to wear with it because the top has a bunch of different colors in it. My old trusty nude stilettos worked out perfectly, providing balance to the tricky top.

If you are having trouble pulling an outfit together because of a print, always remember, if you pull a color from the print you will likely be able to pull together a whole outfit.

Top, similar style here. Jacket, similar style hereLee Jeans, Aldo Shoes, similar style here.

Please excuse the weird faces, I am practicing posing for self-portraits for a weekly "what I wore to work" post. I hope you enjoy it!

Did you shop at Eloquii? Do you miss it like I do?

Tuesday
Jun252013

calling all beauty junkies to the pinkpanel | try new products for free

I know, I know, right before you opened my article, you were sitting around wondering "how do I get free makeup (that I actually want to use)? 

Beauty junkies and makeup lovers rejoice; PinkPanel is a beauty product review and test panel that is free to join. You receive free products, review it and sometimes get paid for it. The PinkPanel introduces beauty products before they hit the market, and is only found on Facebook.

I like the concept, as well as the cost (free) for my opinion. Facebook is not my favorite platform to communicate on, and that’s the only caveat I have about the PinkPanel.

Again, how does the PinkPanel work? Simple...

  1. Join our panel and be instantly entered in our weekly product giveaways
  2. Get free beauty products
  3. Give us your feedback and reviews on products before they hit the shelves
  4. Get paid
  5. Have fun

Check out my beauty haul: 

PinkPanel Beauty Haul

Below, is Nailtini nail polish in a color custom created for PinkPanel. Provides excellent one-coat coverage, great shine and very durable. This is one coat with no base or top coat. I would purchase this nail polish in a heartbeat. 

Next is the Khroma brand (by Kim, Khloe and Kourtney Kardashian), in Fairy Dust; see what one coat looks like with no base or top coat: 

This is two coats of Khroma of Fairy Dust. I loved my blingy thumbnail. Khroma nail polish is heavy, sparkly and wore for seven days very well.

I received the Moor Intense Regenerating Serum also and have been using since receiving it. I have not noticed any difference. It is lightweight, and wears well with my other beauty products. Instant drawback — it has no sunscreen, which is a must for any primary beauty product I wear on my face. It will have to be worn about a month so I can tell if it is improving any of my facial features.

Overall, I enjoyed reviewing PinkPanel and the products that were sent to me. If you are on Facebook, I encourage you to check them out. “Like” them on Facebook at and become an official member by signing up at https://www.facebook.com/thePinkPanel#!/thePinkPanel

Are you willing to get free products? Will you try the PinkPanel?

This post was powered by Brandbacker, and my opinions on the PinkPanel are my own.

Thursday
Jun132013

truly natural | pantene pro-v collection product review

I've been a "natural" for a little over two decades. I can remember the day I went to the barber and had all my bra-length, relaxed for an afro hair cut off. I was tired of perming my hair, and could not wear it down, because it was still so big! Curls were an aberration.

I had a regular barber cutting my sons hair, so I went in and asked him to cut it all off. He said no.

A disagreement ensued. Phone calls were made. He wanted witnesses; he needed proof that it was my choice and no one else.

A little over a half hour later, I had a new style, a new attitude, and product learning curve I had not thought about. 

Pantene products were there for me then, while I figured out how to work my new natural lifestyle, and I still love their products like the first day of my new haircut.

I enjoy talking about products I like and am truly excited to write a post about their new line for curly girls, Pantene Pro-V Collection, Truly Natural.

Welcome to Truly Natural:

 

Defining Curls CustardClarifying ShampooDeep ConditionerCo-Wash Cleansing Conditioner, and Shine Serum with Argan Oil with addtional treatment and styling products available.

African-American women with natural hair can have a tight curl pattern, making it difficult for the scalp's natural sebum to moisturize the hair. It can also be prone to tangling and dryness. The Pro-V formula offers deep cleansing without stripping away the natural moisture.

I certainly agree! My hair is always searching for extra moisture, without added weight! Also, the shampoo and conditioner is affordable, priced at $4.99 retail.

My likes and dislikes:

Clarifying Shampoo: I am used to clarifying shampoos stripping my hair of all moisture, life, and strength. I liked this new version because it did none of that, in fact it left my hair feeling sparkling and soft. An additional benefit — this shampoo is paraben-free.

Deep Conditioner: Did not disappoint! Pantene has intensive conditioners in it's line that would be rivaled by this product! I loved it, great slippage, you don't have to leave it in a whole afternoon for it work it's magic. 

Co-Wash Cleansing Conditioner: This was the product I was not looking forward to trying. Co-wash has never been my thing. I like washing and conditioning my hair, and have no problem doing it every single day of the week. It was a shocker! I am now a co-wash convert! It cleanses and conditions in one step. I used it five days straight, just to see how my regular hair products would work with it. My hair feels — so good and looks as if I just washed it. This is one that will be added to my daily/weekly hair routine. I am really pleased with it.

 

Defining Curls Custard: If I were wearing my hair in a different style (can you say gheri curl), this might work for me. Or a pony. Products are purchased and kept in my cabinet according to the style, this one didn't work for what I am currently rocking everyday. And it has WAY too much fragrance for me.

Shine Serum with Argan Oil: It played well with others, gave me outstanding shine and did not give me buildup, with regular use of the Co-wash. Love it!

Overall, I like the concept a large company trying to niche in on a product line that will be a winner with naturals. Pantene has a place on my beauty counter!

 

 

Are you going to try the Truly Natural line? Which product appeals to you?

I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls Collective, and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.

Friday
Jun072013

how to stretch your shoes (and avoid the kim kardashian look)

For whatever reason, it seems the older I get, the wider my feet get.

It seems that my feet are not growing longer, just wider. The prospect of having to give away most of shoes was one I realized while planning an outfit for an evening gala. Evening shoes bought previously were no longer wide enough.

This is a picture of Kim Kardarshian's swollen feet. Kim possibly could have benefitted from a shoe stretcher. Possibly:

Ironically, I could get my feet in the shoes and it felt as if I had enough toe space to be comfortable for the evening, but the damn shoes were not wide enough. I had meat hanging off the top of the shoe.

I thought about stretching the shoes, putting on socks and wearing the shoes around the house, but who has time for that? And besides, I’m over wearing anything that does not instantly fit. Pain was not the option. I need it to fit when I need it to fit, and it better feel good.

As I researched other methods to stretch shoes, “shoe stretchers” popped into my head. I instantly hit Amazon to check out their offerings.

Meet my new best wardrobe helper, High Heel Shoe Stretcher:

Shoe stretchers (not to be confused with shoe trees which help hold the shape of a shoe) stretch the shoe slowly, with pressure. You slide it in, closed, and turn the rod until the shoe resists. Let your shoe sit for about four hours, and try the shoe on. Instant width! If the shoes isn't quite wide enough yet, do the process again.

The FootFitter brand works equally well with five-inch heels and flats. I took metal removal spot stretchers off as I didn’t need them. The key is to buy the right size.

After reading the reviews, I decided to go down a size (I purchased size #2 and I am a size 8). It fits my size 8 or 8.5 shoes perfectly. My only regret is not buying two, so that I could stretch a pair of shoes at a time as opposed to just one shoe.

Some of the reviews mentioned using a “stretching spray” to aid the process. I used the stretcher with no additional products. I think they are unnecessary.

Two hunks of slightly shaped wood and a metal rod; it’s a crude looking device, but it works. I have happily stretched a good portion of my shoe collection and put them back into my style rotation.

Do you have shoes you haven’t worn because they seem suddenly smaller? Do you need a shoe stretcher?

Submitted to Independent Fashion Bloggers Project #99. Check it out for great tutorials from other bloggers!

Monday
Apr292013

bern's winefest | wine tasting event do's and dont's

Bern's Winefest celebrated it's 16th year on April 21, 2013; lucky me was invited to join in the festivities by Mr. Styleosophy. 

Who doesn't like tasting a multitude of wines with hors d'oeuvres followed up by a handmade-chocolates and dessert bar?

I wondered, "what should I wear", which quickly went to "who will drive us home?"

What I figured out was the second question mattered way more than the first.

My do's and don'ts apply to events for more than 100 attendees. It's the little things that matter with larger events.

Do get a hotel room if you do not live close the venue. Catch a cab to the event and back. Spend the night, make it a weekend. And:

Do not drive and drink. Do not drive to the event, park your car, go in and drink for several hours and then drive somewhere else. Take a cab. Or designate a driver. There were police officers everywhere on site. One had to wonder how much the afternoon was really going to cost, DUI's are expensive. We met a guy who is a complete oenophile, so much so his wife trusts his judgement in all things wine. She drops him off and picks him up after wine fests. He said she "was over it, the crowds, the noise, etc." Nothing like a built-in designated driver.

Do wear comfortable (hopefully stylish) shoes. Don't do like I did and wear these:

You will be standing, and walking, and standing and walking. Seating will likely be minimal as they want people to freely move from station to station tasting as much as possible.

Do switch to a purse that functions on it's own, such as a crossbody or clutch with a wrist strap. Leave the regular totes at home. You won't need all that lipstick anyway. Any bag that leaves both hands free is exactly what you need during a winefest; you will need your hands free for eating and drinking. Or wear an outfit with pockets to carry essentials. 

Do take one of theseIt will make drinking and eating much easier. 

 

Don't use the wine lanyard. Breasts get in the way, conversation is flowing, you provide an animated movement and bam, your date is looking for club soda after your wine tipped over onto your beautiful outfit.

Do listen to folks who tell you what's good. It can be a timesaver.

Do eat a little before you arrive. Vegetarians especially as you never know how the food was prepared and in the crush to find something edible, a chef may not be on hand to answer questions.

 

Do you have any winefest tips?