Thursday, June 30, 2016

Things I'm Loving



1. Sleek Solstice Highlighting Palette

I literally just talked about this product yesterday and I'm back again today to rave about it more because I can do whatever I want. Not to be dramatic (but also to be super dramatic) this palette changed my life. The three powder highlights in this palette are like putting sun beams on your cheek bones and calling it a day. It has a pink, a peach and a more yellow-y golden tone so there's a color in there for you or for any look you're trying to go for. I like to try to match or at least match sure that my face makeup complements my eye makeup for the day and I think this palette makes it really easy to do that. Plus, as I said, they make you glow like no other. Sweep one of the baked colors across your cheek bones and you're going to be reflecting light off of your skin like nobody's business.

2. The Ride by Catfish and the Bottlemen

I also talked about this late last week on my blog, but some things are just worth mentioning twice. I'll spare the nitty gritty details about the group, but I won't skim over how much I'm enjoying their second full length album. I listened to it on my both my drive to and from home this past weekend and I was pretty much just screaming the entire time. All jokes aside, it's one of those albums that you want to listen to from the first note of the first song to the last chord on track eleven. You don't have to listen to it in one sitting, of course, but something tells me you won't want to stop once you start it. It's the same length as their debut album Balcony, though it seems to follow a more "chill" pattern. More acoustic, less everything else. While it certainly isn't a stripped down album, it was a nice follow up to their first, I think. It's hard to not produce the same content over and over, so I appreciate the slight change while still laying out those Catfish songs and rhythms and vibes.

To listen to: "Soundcheck," "Glasgow," and "Heathrow."

3. The Fundamentals of Caring

I watched this by accident. I mean, not by accident. I chose to watch it but stumbling upon it was a total accident. I went on Netflix to watch Legally Blonde again and in that little new arrivals section, I noticed Paul Rudd and I immediately was entranced. I have this potentially unhealthy crush on Paul Rudd (Jimmy Fallon, too, but he has nothing to do with this movie, I just wanted to mention it) and the mere thought of watching him on screen for like two hours was really sounding nice. I had no idea that this movie had literally just been put on Netflix that day and I didn't know anything about it. Everything was Paul Rudd and nothing hurt.

The movie stars Paul Rudd as Ben, an ex-writer who ends up being the caretaker for disabled teen Trevor (Craig Roberts). And if that wasn't a good enough cast, throw Selena Gomez as Dot, Jennifer Ehle as Elsa and Megan Ferguson as Peaches (AKA my favorite character) into the mix. Ben has some personal struggles that he has to overcome throughout the film while trying to help Trevor with his, as well. It's sort of a rag-tag tale and it's really heart-warming but also rips your heart out at the same time. It's like your heart gets ripped out of your chest, but is swaddled really nice and kept safe until you can have it back at the end of the film. So next time you're on Netflix, try to get distracted by Paul Rudd's face and give this movie a try!



4. DIY Levi's Distressed Denim

The only pair of shorts that I own and (somewhat) regularly wear are a pair of high-waisted distressed denim shorts that I tore apart myself. My mom graciously gifted me a pair of her hand me down Levi's to distressed myself again to make into a pair of shorts. Well, they weren't quite high waisted enough for me to make shorts out of them, but they were the perfect boyfriend style jeans, so I decided to go in a different route with my distressed process. I want to do a whole post on how I distressed my jeans, but basically I transformed a pair of flare jeans into a pair of, in my opinion, cool distressed boyfriend jeans and I'm pretty proud of them. They're totally not everyone's taste and I really try hard to make sure everything else looks cool and put together so the jeans aren't so off-putting, but I love 'em! They're comfortable, they make me feel like I belong in New York, and I feel like they would make Leandra Medine from ManRepeller proud. That's all I want in life.

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

UK Beauty Haul



No, no, you did not miss my big trip to England. Unless I missed my own big trip across the pond, I have not left the United States in quite some time. However, my lovely roommate–who could potentially be reading this right now so if that's the case HI GIRL, SHOUT-OUT TO YOUR PERFECT FACE–spent a few days in London and did me the biggest favor of all time: she picked me up some British beauty bits. I gave her some cash, a general wish list and sent her on her merry way to Europe and spent two weeks missing her. I digress, she did me a solid and picked me up a few items that I've been dying to try but haven't been able to because, well, uh, England is over there and I'm over here.

The first thing I knew I wanted to try was the Collection Lasting Perfection concealer (I got mine in shade number one, fair). I'm all about that under-eye concealing game because you know your girl doesn't get enough sleep. I've heard so much about this concealer from the British beauty vloggers that I watch and I didn't think I could go another day without it. Before I was using the MAC Pro Longwear Concealer, but I kind of like the fairness of the Collection concealer more and the fact that it comes with a doe foot applicator. I've been switching in and out and I just think the Collection one gives more of a brightening effect, most likely due to the nature of its shade, but that counts, too! Plus, it lasts a ridiculous amount of time and for me, it doesn't seem to crease if I lightly set it.

The next bit was the Seventeen eyeshadow in the shade Rose Quartz. Now I saw this on some list of the best UK beauty buys of some sort and I fell in love. Usually I stray away from pinky colors on the eyes, but I couldn't resist this shade. This is easily one of the most pigmented shadows I've ever swatched. One quick swipe of the finger in the pan and then across your arm is like heaven on earth. It's uber pigmented, there isn't a whole lot of fallout for it being a glittery/shimmery base and the colors is incredible. It is a mauve-y pink shade, but it's not so warm that it makes my skin look all out of sorts (this is why I couldn't use the Naked 3 palette, way way way too many warm shades that looked horrible on me). You can apply it lightly over the lid for a nice wash of color or you could totally build it up in the outer corner for a subtle (but still dark enough) crease definition, too.

I asked around for some good beauty buys and a lot of people recommended the Bourjois Rouge Edition Velvet lipsticks. I had my roommate pick out a more neutral rose-y pink shade over the other gorgeous shades just so I could get something I would get a lot of wear out of. She got me the shade So Hap Pink, which is sort of like NYX Addis Ababa but less magenta and more rose. I find that they apply similarly to the NYX Soft Matte Lip Creams, except they are a bit more liquidy and thin. I wore it for a day at work and found it really comfortable. It wasn't overly drying and it really settled nicely on the top of my lips. I also really like the shade because when it was wearing off a bit (the wear time is not spectacular, but it's also really easy to reapply and layer) it wore off evenly and didn't look weird or patchy because the color wasn't overly bright.



And last but certainly not least, my favorite product from the whole little haul. I didn't even know I needed this product until somebody recommended it to me. I was nervous about it, too. I've been fascinated by Sleek Makeup for years, ever since Leesha from xsparkage used to haul their eyeshadow palettes even when they weren't available in the United States. But since Sleek is obviously not a US brand, I never really caught up or paid much attention to the brand because it wasn't readily available to me. Until, for a day or two, it was (via my roommate, obviously). If you don't know how much I love my glow right now...you probably don't follow me on Twitter, and that's okay. But I am a highlighting freak, on both my face and in my schoolwork. I just love me some glow on my cheeks, if you're picking up what I'm putting down.

Anyways, that was a really long introduction to the Sleek Highlighting Palette in Solstice. Guys, GUYS. Look at those colors. LOOK AT THEM. The top left is called Ecliptic and it's the only cream one in the palette. I don't love cream products on my skin but this highlighter is really, really gorgeous as a cream eyeshadow. The one to its right is called Hemisphere and it is just a pink, pearly highlighter that literally feels like a light beam is being shot out of your cheekbones. AMAZING. The bottom left is called Subsolar and it's a yellowy sort of highlighter that reminds me of Albatross from NARS but with a more golden yellow tinge. The bottom right is called Equinox and it looks similar to MAC Soft and Gentle in the pan, but I find that it's a lot more pearly and it swatches lighter because it has that sort of marbleized texture with the lighter shades mixed in.

Look, I cannot say enough good things about this palette. The packaging is gorgeous, there are four highlighting shades in one place. Like, that in itself is amazing. They are bright and vibrant and long lasting and they just get the job done. I have been using this palette religiously since I got it. That's right, haven't even touched Becca's Opal in about a week, which is both sad but also kind of exciting because this is a drugstore product! I'm sure I'll crawl back to it soon, but I really love that I can get a bunch of different looks from one palette. Plus, the products are most likely multi-purpose so if I'm even in need of a nice bright eye look, I know where to start.

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

2016 To Do List Check In


If you're new around here, you might not be aware of my yearly tradition. I've been doing this for four of five years at this point, I believe. Basically, instead of creating one big (or multiple big) resolutions to follow during the new year, I decided to switch it up on the arbitrary date. I create a to do list for the year, so to speak. I usually create a list of about forty things to do during the year. I never expect myself to check off all forty, but it's still a fun concept. Some things are as little as buying a pair of shoes, while others go as far as a task to become more positive. Since we're a little over halfway done with the year, I figured now was as good a time as any to check in with my list and see if I've been able to cross anything off. Some things are more difficult to gauge and some items on the list just need to wait until the year ends!

1. Compliment somebody everyday
2. Get new makeup organizers
3. Go to New York City for spring break
4. Graduate in December - I am set to graduate on December 18th, it just hasn't happened yet!
5. Get another 4.0
6. Read one new book each month - Already failed this one. It's okay.
7. Wear everything in your closet at least once. Donate anything that you don't wear.
8. Go to one new spot in Cleveland every month - Failed. I'm not nearly adventurous enough.
9. Keep the frivolous purchases to a minimum. Start saving your money!
10. Apply for an internship
11. Learn how to actually cook a meal!!!
12. No more drinking coffee at night - This one is the one I wanted to do the most and I can happily say that I haven't had coffee at night since...I don't even know when. November?
13. Stay hydrated!
14. Start sleeping more
15. Get your body moving! Start exercising again!
16. Buy yourself your first legal drink
17. Be even more organized.
18. Attempt NaNoWriMo (preferably complete it)
19. Invest in a pair of staple black heels
20. See a Cleveland Cavaliers game - Didn't see a game this season, but I DID go to the parade. There's always fall, though.
21. Go on a road trip
22. Focus on skincare! It's time to demolish that acne once and for all.
23. MORE SELFIES!!!!
24. Think more about that fashion program, if you want. No pressure. - I made the executive decision that I was definitely done with school for now. Well, after this fall semester.
25. STOP BEING SO STRESSED OUT!!! DO NOT THRIVE OFF OF STRESS!!!
26. Seriously. CHILL FOR TWO SECONDS.
27. Focus more on friendships.
28. Give out lots of hugs to those deserving of them.
29. Pet lots of puppies.
30. Survive the first year of One Direction's hiatus
31. Make a bomb a$$ Halloween costume (yes, even better than the last minute Pumpkin Spice Latte)
32. Finish the gallery wall you set out to create and only have two prints for
33. Remember that time you said you wouldn't drink coffee at night? SERIOUSLY DON'T DO IT.
34. Get better at remembering to respond to text messages. Stop disappearing!!! You are not a magician!!
35. Remember, just because you're finished with Spanish academically, doesn't mean you should stop caring about it. Continue to practice!!!
36. Improve this blog tenfold. Make it prettier, get a proper layout, and just put more effort into LATF
37. Go to the beach at least once so you can solidly your hatred for it
38. Start going to the pier again! It's your favorite spot in Cleveland and one day very soon you will not be able to visit anymore!
39. Be kinder
40. Be positive.

So only a few things have been completed thus far and a few I have already failed. But, that's just a part of life! There are items on this list that I knew I would fail, but it's always fun to see if I could work through the issues that were always standing in the way, most of them being time and money. I don't take them as a failure. I take the items with the strikethrough as something to work on, or Fran improvements for the future when my life is different. I'm super excited to see how I manage to get through the other points on this list, especially the ones towards the bottom. Wish me luck!

Monday, June 27, 2016

Andrew McMahon x Panic! At The Disco x Weezer

Teenage Francesca used to go to so many concerts that I can't even remember some of the bands that I've seen. The clubs and the shows have all started to meld together and I can barely distinguish most of them. As I got older, I started getting more selective with shows, pickier about where I chose to spend my money and who I chose to spend it on. I got more uncomfortable with going to small club shows and more apt to go to larger arena or stadium tours once a year instead of multiple smaller shows. Eventually, it got to seeing one or maybe two concerts a year, which is where I am now. However, when my cousin asked if I wanted to see this show with her, there was absolutely no way I could possibly turn it down. Andrew McMahon has been my favorite musician since middle school (we're going on ten years together, I think) through his bands Jack's Mannequin and Something Corporate and now his newest solo endeavor. Panic! At the Disco's first album was my favorite for years in middle school and then I sort of fell out of love with them with time, just because things happen. And Weezer...I think everyone likes Weezer one way or another, so I was stoked out of my mind to see them. So on Saturday evening, my cousin and I set out to CMAC in Canandaigua, New York so we could be in the presence of our favorites.


Andrew McMahon was unfortunately on first. I only say unfortunately because that meant he had the shortest set by ten songs. With a seven song set list, I wanted to bawl my eyes out. The last time I saw Andrew McMahon, he had a full set list just shy of twenty songs. But, being Andrew McMahon, he of course blew his seven songs out of the water. He played mostly new songs from the album released in fall of 2014, mixing in one new track called "Fire Escape" that you should watch a live video of if you can find one that's good quality because it was killer. And, of course, he brought it back to 2005 with "Dark Blue" which honest to god made me want to cry. That was the first Jack's Mannequin song I ever heard, meaning it was my introduction to the man that created my favorite song of all time ("Konstantine" by Something Corporate, give it a listen if you WANT TO CRY YOUR EYES OUT). Let me just say...very, very disappointed by the lack of people standing for this beauty of a man. YOU WERE IN THE PRESENCE OF GREATNESS. I just don't understand not standing at concerts (unless you're physically unable to, that is obviously a different story), but hey, that's just me wanting to support everyone. Anyways, in conclusion, Andrew McMahon should've had a longer set list, but even still he used his seven song setlist to blow it out of the water, spread love, dance with the crowd, and took more time than the other two bands to speak to the crowd, which I appreciated.

Next up was Panic! At The Disco. So, background...Panic! At The Disco's first album is one of my favorite albums of all time. Each song flows into each other brilliantly, the lyrics are sharp, the music is crisp and layered and had this speakeasy vibe that I love. Panic's second album was...okay. And by their third album, I think I gave up. So needless to say, I didn't listen to their fourth or fifth albums, aside from a few songs on Too Weird to Live, Too Rare to Die!. If you like older Panic, there are two songs on the setlist for you. If you love the new stuff, well damn, you are in luck. However, I can't fault them for this because obviously there is a whole new line-up (I believe the lead singer is the only original member now) and the two newest albums are a whole new sound. They can't play A Fever You Can't Sweat Out over ten years later in its entirety. So, while the setlist wasn't for me, it seemed like everyone else was having a grand old time. They had really incredible stage presence and there were some sick horn players. Brendon Urie clearly has a lot of vocal ability, which he tried to show at every moment he possibly could, whether or not it made sense in the song...Anyways. Overall, the performance was great, I was just incredibly lost during it, which is more my fault than theirs, isn't it?


Onwards and upwards to Weezer. Oh Weezer...formed in 1992, a whopping three years before I was born, Weezer is just a damn cool group. They all look like cool lads who I would love to just sit down with and just relax.  I dunno, they give off this relaxed and chill vibe, like they would go with the flow on anything. While I'm not wildly familiar with the ins and outs of Weezer's entire discography, I can't get around it and I sure as hell found no problem in getting into songs I didn't know. Even if you don't know the words, there is a rhythm in there for you to follow and bop along to. Or if you're me, you just go straight for the dancing. I can't stand still at concerts. Even if I don't know the words, I still have to move my hips and my arms and just do something to follow along with the song. Plus, they played my favorite song by them, "(If You're Wondering If I Want You To) I Want You To," which is always a plus. But truly, Weezer easily became one of my favorite bands to see live. There wasn't a lot of conversing with the crowd, which is usually my favorite type of concert, but I have to appreciate the art there. There were incredible reprise and toned down versions of fan favorites, as well as a really great four song mashup that shot out some classics rapid fire. When you've been around for over two decades, you rack up a pretty decent sized discography. You can't play everything that you want to at a show, so what better way of fitting in some songs than mashing four of them up? It was a really great use of a setlist, I think.

All I gotta say...what a concert. And also, Andrew McMahon, when are you going on a headline tour again? ;)


Sunday, June 26, 2016

Good Reads


1. Chanel Bag Value Increased 70 Perfect In Last 6 Years My boss sent this out to my co-workers and me and wow, what an interesting read. It reminded me about an article I saw a few months ago about how Hermes Birkin bags are better investments than gold.

2. ‘The Devil Wears Prada’ Turns 10: Meryl Streep, Anne Hathaway and Emily Blunt Tell All A little (see: a lot) of insight and more behind the scenes stories about a worldwide favorite. Love, love, love this movie to death.

3. Remembering Bill Cunningham So, so sad. This man was a legend. If you haven't watched the documentary about him yet, do it now. The fashion world has lost a great ally and asset and the world has lost a lovely, kind human.

4. 12 Summer Mani/Pedi Combinations To Try Now What better time of year to mix and match some punchy shades for your nails?

5. My Four Go To Hairstyles My hair is a very similar length to Geneva and I love seeing what different looks I can do with it. I love these super simple and polished looks! Trying them immediately.

6. Summer 2016 Trends: 3 Cool Ways to Style Slide Sandals If you've been following my outfits on my Instagram feed, then you know that I've been enjoying slides a little too much.

7. Is Introversion a Crutch? As an introvert myself, I found this pretty interesting!

8. Caught At Sunset Such a fun take on mauve neutrals for the summer time. Love!

9. The Drugstore Beauty Buys Abby Can’t Live Without This Summer Definitely need to hit up the drugstore ASAP.

10. Top of the Rock I still have to do this!!! New York, I'm coming for you!

11. I Scream, You Scream Ugh, now I'm craving some ice cream.

12. Overcoming a Language Barrier During Travel This is always my biggest fear when I think about traveling in the future!

What have you been reading lately? 

Saturday, June 25, 2016

Five Artists You Need to Know


Either I'm really, really late on these artists or I'm just on time to hop on the bandwagon. I try to listen to new music as often as I can, whether it's new artists on the scene or just new artists to me. I'm sure I could go on for a while about the music I've been listening to lately, but these are five that I've been listening to more than the others, the five standout artists and bands for me.

1. Tobias Jesso Jr.

Listen, in doing more research about this guy, I found out that he's six foot seven and from Vancouver and has brown, curly hair. So now that I've found out that this man is not only ridiculously talented, but he's also my dream man. With all of that aside, I've been really digging Jesso's music lately. His first demo came out in 2013, but his debut album Goon didn't get released until 2015. Jesso Jr.'s music is really cool. It's indie soft rock with a huge focus on piano. All of his songs are very soothing and soulful. His voice kind of sounds like it belongs on a record from The Beatles, which is a comment I would normally roll my eyes at, but you know, it's true. Even if he only has one album out, I can't get enough of it! Plus, he co-wrote "When We Were Young" by Adele so I mean, dude's a genius.

Favorite songs: "True Love" and "Leaving LA"

2. Catfish and the Bottlemen

Coming at you with a Welsh group now. This isn't a new band by any means. They formed in 2007 and have two albums under their belt, but I just recently got back into them and felt like they needed some more love after their second album came out. Reminiscent of The Kooks, The Wombats and Arctic Monkeys, Catfish are pretty much the band that I keep under my belt to perfectly balance my love of pop music. Despite me wanting to roll my eyes repeatedly at comments made by the lead singer diminishing One Direction's success and seemingly pop music in general, the group is still great, so I just try to focus on the music (same with The 1975). Another cool indie group who focuses more on the rock spectrum. The songs are generally pretty fast-paced with some nice instrumental interludes on tracks. There are a few slow songs to offset the general theme of the albums and overall,  the band has produced two pretty killer albums.

Favorite songs: "Hourglass, "Heathrow" and "Kathleen."

3. The Strumbellas

Another band that isn't necessarily new (their first EP came out in 2009 and their most recent album is their third), but they are new to me. They came up over and over again on the Pandora stations we were playing at work and every time a new song would come up, I would take a picture of it so I could listen to them when I got home. Needless to say, I fell in love with the happy, upbeat music from the group. Discovering them for myself for the first time during the summer months was perfect timing because I swear, their newest album is chock full of the perfect summer songs. Roll down your windows and slip on your sunglasses and just cruise along to their newest album Hope.

Favorite songs: "Young & Wild" and "Spirits"

4. Perlo

I talked about Perlo a while back on my blog and yes, I'm still loving them. The group consist of Marie Hsiao (Mree) and Henri Bardot. Their music is so ethereal and relaxing and dreamy. They still only have their four song EP out, but really, I haven't gotten sick of it yet. The songs are so complex with multiple layers and different focuses that I swear every time I listen to the songs, I find something new about them. They are one of my go-to groups (and separately, as solo artists) to go to when I just need to relax with some slow tunes.

Favorite song: "Right Where You Left Me"

5. EXES

Okay, okay, so I know this group only has two singles out at the moment, but I'm telling you, they're great. I used to listen to Allie McDonald's covers on YouTube forever ago. I still followed her on Twitter and when I found out that she was working on new music with Mike Derenzo, I freaked out. So yes, there are only two songs, but they are two amazing songs that you should listen to right this second. They're like cool indie-pop tunes that make me want to wear winged eyeliner and kimonos with fringe and really distressed high waisted shorts. I wish I could explain the feeling the songs give me better, but that's the best I can do.

Favorite song: "18"

What artists have you been listening to lately? 

Friday, June 24, 2016

Positivitea Cup Six: (More) Unsolicited Advice



By now, you should know that I love giving my two cents. I am a self-proclaimed know-it-all and I just love giving unsolicited advice. My advice is terrible, but nonetheless, I love to give it. What better way to feed my insatiable need to spread my weak and common sense knowledge around than another unsolicited advice post?

1. Smile every day

Do all things with a smile. Your cheeks and jaw might ache a bit, but smiling your way through stuff is just a fun way to live through life. Look, I get it, I have an RBF and sometimes it's just easier to let your face do its natural droopy thing...but smiling is so fun! HOWEVER, if a man tries to tell you that you should smile more...don't do it. Fight them. Just kidding don't fight them but like...don't fall for that misogynistic and sexist BS, okay? Smile for yourself on your own time and merit. Smile because you want to smile, not because someone (or rather, some jerk) asks you to.

2. Take the high road

I like be bitter and petty just as much as the next person, but sometimes you just gotta buckle up and take the high road on things. Don't let drama in the past affect you in the present. Play your cards right and don't show your weakness or vulnerability. Don't let the other person see that it bothers you. Just sort of fake it til you make it if you have to, you know? Be the bigger person. I swear, sometimes that will drive them crazier than trying to stoop to their level. So keep your head high and mosey your way through the rough patch!

3. Buy the shirt

I had something similar to this in my last post, but it had to do with free Victoria's Secret underwear. I talked a lot about that in the last advice post...I digress, sometimes we just need to buy the shirt or the dress or the mascara. I don't know what your preference is between clothing and makeup. I'm not saying you should binge purchase every piece of clothing or makeup that you slightly like. But if you can stop thinking about a shirt or a pair of jeans or shoes...just buy them. Buy them and bask in their existence. We can't all afford to buy everything in the world that we want, but if you really want something and you can swing it, just do it and call it a reward. Chances are you worked hard for that money and even if you didn't...we are all entitled to rewarding ourself for just getting through the weeks. Getting through a day can be a struggle to some people and that's okay. Treat yourself once in a while and just buy the shirt, okay?

4. Don't accept everything

This could definitely apply to drinks from strangers at parties, but this is mostly about how people treat you. You don't just have to turn the other cheek. I'm non-confrontational, but you know when you've hit a sore spot when I retaliate. You don't have to take everything that people dish you. You don't have to accept the negativity or the off-hand comments. You don't have to deal with the crappy people in your life who don't treat you wish the same respect that you treat them or that you deserve. Don't accept that that is how they are. Don't accept any mistreatment to you or your character. You deserve more than that.

5. It's okay to have bad days

This took me forever to learn and I still struggle with it. Slightly contradictory to my first piece of advice, but some days you just don't feel like smiling. I get it, I totally get it. It can happen after a long week or sometimes it just hits you out of nowhere. There is no written work that tells you that you have to be happy every day and even if there was, it'd be an impossible feat. You can't be happy or positive all of the time. You can try, but it's human nature to have our down days. It's what you do with those down days that counts. Sometimes you can snap yourself out of it, but there is certainly no harm or shame in just wallowing for a bit. You can sit down and relax or lay down and do absolutely nothing for twelve hours straight. There is no one way to treat down days and I think that's something that we all have to tailor to our own needs. It's just very important to know that having bad days is completely okay. It's normal, we all have them! Some have more than others, but that doesn't speak any less of their character or state of being. We all have to take care of ourselves and treat ourselves with the utmost kindness!

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Things I'm Loving


1. Coconut Water Lemonade

This one sort of doubles as an impromptu love-sesh over the nail polish I'm currently wearing. It's You're Such A Budapest from OPI and it's lovely. Okay, now that we have that little bit aside, let's get down to this drink. I go through phases with this drink and right now I'm in my "I LOVE IT I WANT IT ALL THE TIME PHASE," except I'm not going to let myself get to the point where I have it all of the time because that's HOW YOU GET SICK OF THINGS, FRANCESCA. Ahem. Anyways. This stuff is delicious. I can't stomach regular coconut water, so I have to resort to this lemonade business, but it's still super delicious. It's tangy, it's refreshing, what more could you want out of a beverage?

2. Fresh fruit

It's summer which means all I crave in this world is fresh fruit. My bank account has been severely suffering because of my completely inability to control myself when it comes to fruit. I will finish a container of cherries in one sitting. One. Sitting. I need to eat my strawberries and blueberries fast because I hate when my fruit is mushy. My bank account has been taking a hit as I've been picking up only what I could describe as #ALLTHEFRUIT. Cherries, blueberries, strawberries, NECTA-FREAKING-RINES. Oh my god. I need fruit now. I need it!!!!!



3. The Cleveland Cavaliers

People don't believe when I say I'm a sports fan, and also when I say I used to play sports and lots of 'em. That's fine, I don't mind too much, but just know that I've been keeping up with the NBA this season because I've actually had some time and let me tell you...what an insane year for the Cavaliers.  We've had injuries, drama, the firing of a head coach during the middle of a season. Cleveland is notoriously horrible at sports. We've had a championship drought for over five decades. It's a thing. However, the Cleveland Cavaliers, under the wing of King LeBron James and with the undying dedication of players like Kyrie Irving, JR Smith, Kevin Love, Iman Shumpert...the list goes on, really...the 2016 Cleveland Cavaliers brought the NBA Championship home this year. I went to the celebratory parade yesterday and it was just an incredible moment. Nearly a million and a half people packed into a small area of downtown just to celebrate this accomplishment...couldn't have asked for a better record-breaking end to a rollercoaster ride of a season. Thanks guys.

4. Matisse x Kate Bosworth 'Judith' Mules

These were 100% an impulse purchase. A girl came into work wearing these or a similar pair...I'll actually never know because I didn't want to ask her because she was a bit too snooty for my liking...but that's neither here nor there. After I saw her walking around in these, I spent like two hours trying to find them on the internet and these are what I ultimately came up with. I ordered them immediately the next day and waited a week for them to come in. And I love them. I am completely and totally in love with them. I've been trying to find every possible way to wear them during the summer so I can parade around in them all of the time. These could easily become my new favorite shoes, no doubt in my mind. They've got a bit of padding in them too so they're not insanely uncomfortable! I wore them for over 12 hours on the first day I got them and my feet only started to ache towards the end of the night. So for a first wear mixed with a 12+ hour work day on my feet, I wouldn't say that's too bad!

What have you been loving lately? 

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

#AllInCLE

This post is purely a celebratory post about the Cleveland Cavaliers defeating the Golden State Warriors on Sunday night in the NBA Finals. This win brought Cleveland its first championship after a fifty-two year drought and in a record breaking win at that. No team has ever come back from a three to one deficit in a seven game series and I am just all sorts of proud. Cleveland is a cool place, guys, and they (we? Can I say we? I'm going on my fourth year as an unofficial Ohioan) deserved this win and title and everything that comes along with it.

So, to celebrate, I subjected myself to hundreds of thousands of people, which is a feat in itself. I can't even handle general admissions at concerts, so patting myself on the back for this one.

Cleveland is home to many things. The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Barrio, some other stuff, but truly it is home to passionate people and passionate fans. This championship was not just for the team or for the city, but for the people who call and have called Northeastern Ohio their home. Thanks, guys.






Tuesday, June 21, 2016

#StyleGoals: Camille Rowe


In case you aren't sure who Camille Rowe is, let's do a quick recap of French-American beauty. Rowe is twenty-six year old model and occasional actress. She has some major covers under her belt, like Vogue Paris and Elle and has one of the most effortlessly cool closets to ever exist in all of history. She has a love for vintage and eccentric fashion and honestly, she's just cool. Too cool for me, unfortunately, but it happens.


There is just something so effortless about Camille Rowe's style. It's simple, yet it has its extravagant elements that I envy. There always seems to be some sort of "BAM" aspect, whether it's in patterns, jackets or shoes. There's like a simple base, with a standard tee and jeans or trousers of some source, and then there's just that on statement piece that makes you look twice.


Literally, #Goals. I wish I could be this effortlessly cool in my style. A pair of loose fitting jeans and simple black flats, made insanely fabulous by a massive furry jacket. That's how to spice up an outfit!


This is a very casual take on on a dress with a split. Also...DAMN DANIEL, BACK AT IT AGAIN....okay, I'll stop, I'll stop. This also reminded me that I really need to get a jean jacket. Yes. Okay. Will do.

Who is your #StyleGoals? 

(images from here, here and here)

Monday, June 20, 2016

How To Wear: Mules


I've been lusting over a pair of mules ever since I tried a pair of chunky heeled cognac mules from French Connection in Saks a couple of years ago. They were a size two small and I wanted to cry, but I told myself that some day I would find a pair of mules that did the trick for me. Alas, I found this pair from the Matisse and Kate Bosworth collection that I absolutely adore. But, we'll talk about those later this week. This post is all about the mule style shoe, the sort of shoe that I've seen nearly everywhere lately. I get why they're so popular. They're easy, you literally just slip your foot into them and you're done. There's no need to worry about the backs of your ankles getting ripped up or having to fret with buckles and laces and all of that nonsense that can bog you down. Nope, just slip 'em on and go.

The second I tried my pair on, I immediately had to pair it with different looks in my closet to see how I would get the best wear out of them during the summer months. I mean, there are days where it's cooler and they'd be easy to style with jeans, but what about those hot hot days where it feels like my skin is going to melt off? Those were the tougher outfits, but I think I figured out some choices!

1. Distressed and frayed boyfriend jeans

Obviously, denim shorts would work just the same, but I found that this style of shoe looked really cool with lighter-washed denim that were really distressed and slightly baggier. I basically cuffed the bottom of my jeans once or twice (depending on the length) to expose a bit of my ankle (#Scandalous) and showcase the shoes more. Then, I would just pair it with whatever top was appropriate for the weather that day. It could work with a tee, a light sweater, a tank, even a button up blouse.


2. Jean skirt

This is for the days where it's just too hot to keep your legs constricted in denim. I know Cleveland isn't the hottest of places, but damn, there have been some scorchers lately. Swap out the jeans for a denim mini skirt and style it the same way that you would before! It's a really easy alternative to keep the same relaxed look while ensuring that you don't suffer from any sort of heat stroke courtesy of a pair of long pants during the summer.

3. Bohemian style dress or romper

I wouldn't necessarily wear mules with a really girly romper or dress, but I think they look awesome with a more bohemian look. Think loose silhouettes, funky patterns, very a-la the Free People vibes. Plenty of stores sell the multi printed and flowing swing dresses that would be the perfect companion piece to whatever style mules you were looking at.

There are plenty of different styles and colors of mules out on the market at various price points. You can get high-heeled mules, flat mules, somewhere in between (mine are a little shy of 3 inches). Like any trend, you can sort of pick and choose how much you want to delve into it, but I think these are a really fun shoe option for the summer, even leading into the fall time. I know I'm ridiculously excited to see how I can play around with these when the weather starts to cool down again.

Do you think you'd want to rock the mule trend? 

Sunday, June 19, 2016

Good Reads


1. Every Thought Catalog Advice Piece, As Written By Your Dad This is absolutely brilliant. Happy Father's Day, ya'll.

2. The History of the Midi Skirt "It’s the sartorial equivalent of shopping for chocolate and only finding broccoli." This is one of my favorite lines from this post but truly, a hilarious retelling of a decade-by-decade development (and recession) of midi skirts.

3. Accessories On Fleek I am obsessed with those Leffler Randall mules and Quay sunglasses. OBSESSED!

4. Money Diaries: Leandra Chronicled Her Spending for a Week Part of me wants to try to start doing this, but another part of me wonders how sad it will make me to see how many stupid things I buy.

5. Ruffles for Rosé I love the look of the light blue dress with the Louis Vuitton Damier Azur print!

6. T-Shirt Dress Hands down one of the easiest and most comfortable pieces of clothing to wear during the summer months.

7. The Song of Summer 2016 Smackdown My vote is for "Can't Stop The Feeling" or "Work From Home" to be honest.

8. NY Closets: Nicole Chapoteau NY Closets? More like #ClosetGoals.

9. Smart Ways for Dealing with Constant Complainers Sigh, sometimes it can just be a bit draining to be around negativity. These are some solid tips to combat it, though!

What have you been reading lately? 

Saturday, June 18, 2016

Dream Closet, Vol. 18

Do you ever just cry when you look at Net-a-Porter? I can't help but get a little emotional over the new arrivals section on that website. If I tried to look through any other section, I'm quite certain that my head would explode from overexposure to too many wonderful, pricey things. I must keep it contained to those four to six pages of new things to keep myself in check.

I love pretty things. So. Much. And I find that fashion and Harry Styles fit perfectly into that category, therefore I've decided to dedicate my life solely to those two things. All jokes aside, it's always fun to see what new pieces of clothing are coming out as the seasons go on. Let's disregard the fact that all of these items combined could probably pay for a semester of my college tuition *laughs nervously*






What's in your dream closet?

Friday, June 17, 2016

Positivitea Cup Six: Haters Gonna Hate


Taylor Swift sang it right. Sometimes there are just some people in the world who aren't going to love you or what you do or how you act or how you laugh. We all have different opinions, so that's completely normal! There's never any harm in healthy disagreements. But sometimes, I swear, there are just some people who take joy out of hating things and exuding negativity and I just don't see the point in that. It's not cool to hate everything. Maybe you think it is, maybe you thought it was, but it's not cute or quirky or unique. There's no reason to tear down someone else's interest when it's not constructive. It takes a lot of energy to hate something someone likes and be explicitly vocal about it to them.

There's that quote that is usually paired with a really cute watercolor graphic that is something along the lines of "you could be the ripest, juiciest peach in the world and there will still be somebody who doesn't like peaches." If that isn't the truest thing you've ever heard, then I don't know what is. As lovely as it would be for everyone to agree or be neutral on things, but that's not feasible. I mean, there are certainly things that I don't enjoy, but I wouldn't necessarily judge anyone else based on it (I should mention that this is excluding things like politics because that is a whole other can of worms I do not want to open). There should be some sort of mutual understanding that people like what they like and that's that. End of story. No need to taunting or teasing or just down right mean comments.

I have a sparkly card on my desk given to me by a close friend that says "Haters Gonna Hate" in gold glitter and truly, everyone should have this card. Because while it would be great if all of the hate, especially online hate, could disappear, that's not probable. So like the great and oh-so-wise Taylor Swift once said, you just have to shake them off. Don't give them the satisfaction of knowing that it bothered you. Don't dwell on it. Embrace what you enjoy and live your life the same way that you would before. There's no use in letting negativity bring you down. Fight the negativity with positivity and just keep on keeping on, my friends.

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Things I'm Loving

1. Last Year Was Complicated by Nick Jonas

I've been a fan of the Jonas Brothers for a decade now which means I've spent half of my life fangirling over those three boys. It's a bit crazy to think of it that way, but it's true. I've always been and will always be a fan of whatever those three do, whether it's a solo career, a new group, or putting having a family first. It's no surprise that I love everything that Joe is doing with DNCE, but this is the first album of Nick Jonas' where I've been, well, like YASSSSSS. I anxiously awaited the arrival of this album and I wasn't disappointed in the slightest. Nick Jonas has always been an incredible songwriter, in songs for the band, for his first attempt at a solo career and now with this whole new side of him. It's a different way of writing but he still kills it. This album is fun and heartfelt and I completely understand why everyone (Joe included) is proud of him for this one.

To listen to: "Bacon," "Under You," "Touch," "The Difference," and "Close."



2. Lorac Pro Eyeshadow Palette

I talked about this palette in this post already, so I'll spare you any more unnecessary details about it. Let's just say that yesterday was the first time I didn't use it since I got it almost two weeks ago and my eye makeup game was severely lacking. I've never used a palette with eyeshadows so creamy and smooth and even to apply. Plus, 16 shadows with an even ration of half matte/half shimmery shadows? Incredible.

3. Living Proof Instant Texture Mist

Another product that I've talked about on the blog before, though it was quite a while back. I picked this one up last year because it was the only thing that combated the humidity and wind when it came to styling my hair. I would walk outside to work and after a thirty minute walk, my hair would fall completely flat. Nothing I did to it would withhold the wrath of Lake Erie weather patterns. However, a few spritzes of this into my hair and a little scrunching locked in my look. Sure, it made it a bit more tousled, but I'd rather have tousled waves over a really weird, frizzy straight look! Plus, it smells lovely!

4. Nest Rollerball In Citrine

I have a disgusting amount of points to spend at Sephora but I swear every time I go there's never anything that interests me. However, last time I went I did pick up a couple of samples and this little rollerball was one of them. I'm always interested in trying out new perfumes just because I don't really experiment with them a lot. I love smelling them, I just don't love buying new ones, so when the opportunity arises to find a new scent, I snatch it right up. This one is such a lovely scent. It's got the sort of sour smell from a citrus laced in with a floral scent. It's a bit darker in scent than others I've used but the faint musk really blends in nicely with my skin. I know perfumes smell different on every person, but I think this one from Nest really works nicely with my skin. I've heard Ingrid Nilsen talk about Nest fragrances in the past so I was really stoked that this one worked out so well for me! Plus, it was technically free!



5. Hamilton

I saved the best for last, truly. If you're unsure of what Hamilton is, I don't believe you. Hamilton is the smash-hit musical about the life of Alexander Hamilton, one of America's founding father's, but with a hip-hop twist. I kid you not. And let me tell you, it's brilliant. Lin Manuel Miranda and the entire cast are some of the most talented and incredible humans on this earth and I just cannot believe that something this brilliant exists.

I've been dying to listen to songs from Hamilton but I never got around to it and never really knew where to do. Little did I know that there was a soundtrack on Spotify ready for me to listen to whenever I made my way to it. While I'm pissed at myself for waiting so long to try to find it, I'm glad I did. I spent two long car rides back and forth from Ohio to New York (Saturday evening and Sunday evening) listening to this soundtrack from front to back. I cried twice both times. That's right, I haven't even seen the musical in the flesh and I cried the first and second time I listened to the soundtrack. That's how incredible it is.

If you've managed to escape Hamilton until this moment, stop running from it. Listen to it. Devour it. Fall in love with it. Bask in its glory. Join the club, because honestly, you are missing out if you haven't jumped on the Hamilton bandwagon.

To listen to: "Alexander Hamilton," "The Schuyler Sisters," "Helpless," "Satisfied," "Guns and Ships," "Burn," and "Who Lives, Who Dies, Who Tells Your Story."

What have you been loving lately? 

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Keeping Your Style Fresh



I feel like we've all fallen into a style rut at one point in our lives. You're lying if you haven't opened the doors to your closet and cried, "I HAVE NOTHING TO WEAR" to nobody but yourself. Hell, you're probably lying if you didn't do that just this morning while you were getting ready. It's okay, it happens to the best of us. I say it's because we're perfectionists and nothing will ever live up to our expectations of our day-to-day style in our heads.

We're humans, we get bored of things. It's completely possible to just get tired of your wardrobe. It doesn't mean you need to have a complete style change or get rid of everything in your possession. Really, all it comes down to is going at it with a new and improved mindset! Falling into a rut is a normal part of life. It's only a matter of pulling yourself out of it!


1. Take pictures of your outfits on a daily basis to track your day-to-day style

This can also help you avoid repeating outfits. Now, outfit repeating is not a big deal at all. We all own washing machines, we are humans. We re-wear clothes because that is the point of buying them. But with outfit repeating comes repetition which can further dig you into your rut. Take a picture of your outfits everyday, even if it's just for a normal week. See what sort of styles you tend to lean towards depending on what you have going on. See what pieces you wear the most often and figure out how to pair them with other things in your closet. It's a really great visual journal that can tell you a lot about your dressing habits. Plus, who doesn't love mirror shots?


2. Add accessories 

With those staple pieces that you track, there are so many easy ways to change them up. You can wear a plain white t-shirt ten different ways if you really wanted to. That's why jewelry, scarves, jackets, shawls, shoes, handbags and so many more accessories exist. They are there to spice up your outfit, to add a bit of intrigue if you will. It's a super simple way to change an outfit without having to put on something entirely different.

3. Don't let the clothes wear you

Make sure that you're confident in what you are wearing. If you dress everyday and only feel "meh" in what you're wearing, of course you're going to feel like your style is falling flat. Making sure that you feel good in the clothes that you're wearing is the most important step in keeping your style fresh.  Try on a dozen different outfits if that's what it takes to make you look in the mirror and thank "damn, I look good today!" Learn from that outfit decision and keep that mantra in your back pocket for moments of need.

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Dressing on a Budget


If you're a struggling college student, say "I!" If I'm hearing myself correctly, it sounded like a symphony of "I"s being shouted right back at me. Look, it's okay if you're not, but it's doubly okay if you are. Really, one way or another we're all stuck in this boat together. Sometimes we just don't have an expendable amount of money to dedicate to our style, no matter how much we wish we did.

I've always been terrible at saving my money. That sounds so negative. Let's rephrase it this way: I have an uncanny ability to spend all of my money. Look at that journalistic spin! I like to shop. I like to buy makeup and clothes and music and magazines and coffee and the occasional grocery splurge. This insatiable desire to constantly spend money was slightly more acceptable when I was still living at home and had absolutely no living expenses, though I'm sure my parents would kindly disagree. But now as a twenty-year-old "adult" (more like fauxdult, am I right?) who has things like rent and utilities and gas and groceries, frivolous spending had to drop down to the bottom of the totem pole...okay, or right above groceries. LOOK, I know, I know, that's a terrible thing to prioritize, but I can't help it. Or I could but I'm choosing not to...

I digress, after three years of living poor in college, I've tried to change my ways (which is really hard when you work at two clothing stores) for the better and I've picked up a few tips on how to save when you're spending. Now don't get me wrong, I have a long ways to go, but if it's possible for me, it's possible for you!

1. Fast fashion

Ugh, I can feel Anna Wintour glaring at me all the way from the Conde Nast offices. Look, fast fashion is a love/hate thing I think. Yes, copying runway designs and making cheaper alternatives before those pieces actually hits the stores because of faster production is awful. The waste that these companies create is also bad. The employment situation? Cringe. But sometimes, it's what you have to do to get by without breaking the bank. Places like H&M and Zara tend to be the two that seem to be the most "on trend" with what's going on in the fashion world, while Forever21 always seems to be six steps behind with some neon.

2. Avoid trends

I know I just mentioned how H&M and Zara are both "on trend" with what's going on in the fashion world, but that doesn't mean you need to follow. The thing about trends is that they are fleeting. Some last longer than others, but most of the time they're gone in a seasons time. Try not to fall for too many trends because then you'll just be putting your money into something that you won't be wearing in six months. That over-sized fringed poncho might not be the smartest buy. What trends you should avoid depend on your personal style, but it's best to be careful when it comes to shopping the latest trends. Really think about how long you think that you'll wear a piece before you buy it or else you'll just be giving away or donating that piece in a few months time.

3. Find your staples

Finding your staples, whether it's cuts of garments or your color scheme or fabric choices, is key. Carly Cristman only wears black, white, grey, and other neutrals. That eliminates the entire color wheel when it comes to shopping. Some people swear by a blazer, a striped shirt, a white tee, and a little black dress. Everyone's staples are different and it's best to find what works for you. Mine are a white and black t-shirt, a pair of regular and black skinny jeans, a pair of distressed mid-tone jeans, a high neckline dress, a black skater skirt and a pair of nude and black open toed booties. Results may vary, but when you find them, shopping becomes infinitely easier because you won't be buying unnecessary clothing that doesn't fit into your staple collection.

4. Shop thrifted or consignment

You can save so much money buying secondhand clothing. If you're really all that concerned about the hygiene aspect, all it takes is a quick wash or run to the dry cleaners and it's as good as new. And it would surprise you how many people bring their items in washed already, though I'm sure that depends on the establishment that you go to. My suggestion is to search "high end consignment" for your city or surrounding areas to see what pops up. These are the places you can get anything from J. Crew to Tory Burch and Kate Spade to things like Gucci and Prada and even Chanel and Louis Vuitton. I can't vouch for other establishments other than the ones I know, but they are great places to find authentic items for way, way, way less. And we all know how thrift shops work: you win some, you lose some, and you find a pair of mom jeans to make into cut-off shorts. Both of these places require time and patience, but when you find a piece, you remember it forever.

5. Hit up those sales or the outlets

This is an obvious one but seriously, take advantages of sales. Save your shopping for around holidays because you know stores and malls are going to have some sort of deal going on. I know my favorite place to shop when I go home is the outlet mall because everything is so much cheaper. The first time I went to a real mall versus the outlet mall, I was so confused. Why was everything so expensive? Everything is so much cheaper at my mall? Well, it's true. You can find the deal of a century at the outlets. Also, USE YOUR COLLEGE DISCOUNTS!!!! There are plenty of graphics on Pinterest and on the internet to let you know which stores accept a college discount. Do your research and go frequent those places. The three I know off the top of my head (because I've used them) are J. Crew, Madewell, and Kate Spade.

It really all comes down to this: You can look polished in a twenty dollar outfit just the same as a two hundred dollar outfit. It's all about styling or how you do your hair or makeup. All that truly matters is that you're comfortable and confident and feel good in what you're wearing. There's absolutely no shame in shopping cheap for clothing or anything, really. We're all living very different lives and we have to do what's best for us!

What's your favorite way to save money when you're shopping for clothes?

Monday, June 13, 2016

Five New Makeup Products


I haven't been trying out that much new makeup lately for a few reasons, one being that makeup costs money, but so does rent and groceries, so I've have to make a bit of a sacrifice for the sake of living expenses. Another reason that I don't try out a lot of new products is that I have so many in my collection at the moment that I need to use them before I even attempt to stuff anymore in my drawers. Plus, I know what I like. I know what looks good. I just haven't felt this huge desire to add more of the same thing to my makeup collection. However, I have slowly but surely added a few products to my collection and as you'll see, some have worked out while others...well...haven't.

1. Lorac Pro Palette 

Listen, I've been putting off buying this palette for ages. I've seen it on Youtube for a long time and I see it every time I pop into Ulta and Sephora. I stare it in the eyes aka all of the eyeshadow squares and then I walk away. However, this month I felt inspired to make the dive and finally purchase it. I don't think I've ever used eyeshadow so buttery and pigmented and blendable and just so incredibly perfect. It comes with sixteen shades, eight being matte and the other eight being shimmery. Let me tell you, there are probably only one or two shades in the palette that I will not wear. The other fourteen or fifteen? Glorious. I've been wearing solely this palette for the past week and I haven't repeated an eyeshadow combination yet. So many of the colors work together so well and it's just so easy to create eyeshadow looks with this palette. I love that it's so slim as well. It's very easy to pack!

2. Urban Decay Naked Skin Concealer Light Warm

I've talked about this before but I was to reiterate how much of a game changer this concealer is. I've been using it for about a month now and it's just so pigmented and high coverage and I literally don't know what my face would look like without it. Actually, I do. I would look like a heinous spotty mess, very a-la thirteen year old Francesca. I'm not about that life so I am forever indebted to this incredible concealer. A little goes a long way as well since it is so pigmented and has really great coverage. It has a really long doe foot applicator that bends back and forth to help get the product into potentially tricky areas on the skin. This has been one of the first concealers I've used that lasts the entire day without reapplying. Also, my skin doesn't itch when I wear it all day! That's a huge feat, considering there are days where I leave the apartment at 9:00AM and don't get back until 11:00PM or even midnight.

3. Inspr Eyeshadow Carnival 

This was a gift from my cousin and appeared in one of the Ipsy bags a while back. I always forget about eyeshadow singles and trios because they're in a different drawers than my palettes and I tend to reach for those more. However, I really, really love using this shade. It's a beautiful light bronze shade. I can apply it in a sheer coat over the lids for a bit of color, but I can also build it up in the outer corner for a more "dramatic" look. Now my idea of dramatic is very different than traditional dramatic looks, but since I'm not a massive fan of dark eye looks, building up this color in the outer corner is the perfect look for me!

4. L'Oreal Infalliable Super Slim Eyeliner

I am a liquid eyeliner girl. I love my felt tipped pens. I've been a huge fan of the Kat Von D liquid liner in the past but I wanted to try a drugstore alternative and...well...let's just say we're not working out too well. The first day I used it I was really excited! I got really crisp and clean lines, but when I got down to the actually wing part, I found it impossible to get it to a sharp point. The product doesn't deliver down into the tip of the pen, making it too difficult to get any sort of point at the end. You can form a thicker point, but I like really thin and crisp lines for my eyeliner. It lasts fine and it's comfortable to wear, but I just found it terrible for winged eyeliner, so it's a no from me, I'm afraid. I am still using it though but I decide what I want to replace it with.

5. Anastasia Liquid Lipstick Soft Lilac

Another meh product for me. I was really excited to try out these liquid lipsticks and I thought I would try to go for a shade that I don't own. However, I think there's a reason that I don't own this shade. I just find that it doesn't look good on me in the slightest. It dries to this very dark lilac shade with a sort of grey tinge to it. But the color isn't my biggest issue with it. I don't know if it's just me being picky or maybe it was the shade I picked, but it gets so crumbly. It was so uncomfortable to wear the second and third time I tried it. My lips felt grainy (I exfoliate and moisturize before super matte or liquid lipsticks) and tacky and it was just an unfortunate combination of feelings. I want to see if it was just the shade I got, but I'm also afraid to buy another one just to not like it, especially when I know how much I love the Kat Von D liquid lipsticks. I know tons of people love the Pure Hollywood shade so perhaps it was just Soft Lilac that fell short!

What new products have you been trying lately?

Sunday, June 12, 2016

Good Reads



1. Tricky Trend: The Printed Jumpsuit I'm fairly certain that I need this jumpsuit in my life ASAP.

2. So What Exactly Is Resort Season? This article doubled as really funny and really informative, so fashion peeps, if you're out there, read this.

3. My Chicago Bedroom Tour This bedroom, I kid you not, is legitimate GOALS. I would kill for a bedroom that chic.

4. Our Favorite Chicago Coffee Shops Filed under things to keep in mind incase I ever move further into the midwest..

5. 11 Ways to Wear a Piece of String Definitely thought this article might have been a joke based off of the title, but it ended up being pretty cool. I still won't wear string unless it's accidentally hanging off of a stitch on some of my clothes, but hey, doesn't mean it's not cool!

6. Matcha Tea Latte I live off of the green tea lattes at Starbucks, which are made with matcha powder which means I could, in theory, make it myself? Do I dare try?

7. Summer Reading List Remember that time a couple of weeks ago when I was actually reading? What happened to that?

8. The Art of ‘F*ck You, I’m Hot’ Photos This is the kind of quality content I come onto the internet for.

What have you been reading lately?

Saturday, June 11, 2016

Summer Lipstick Favorites

This is the TooFaced melted lipstick in the shade Melted Jelly Donut, which sadly has not made this list, but I do love that one too. Consider this a recommendation.
I don't know how much more I could possibly express my deep and undying love for lipstick. I wear it every day. I have to. I literally feel incomplete walking out the door without it. While there are a few shades that I can manage to wear all year round, I tend to wear my lipstick seasonally, just like my clothes and men. Just joking about the men part. I'm a #ManRepeller, remember? These are some of my favorite shades to break out during the summer time and a few unimportant reasons why. Point blank: I love them very, very much. Enough to rave about them multiple times on my blog. Carry on!

1. NYX Sydney because life without a pale pink lipstick just isn't a life I want to live. It's such a delicate color that can only be described as pretty. It's not quite pink but it's not quite a lilac or lavender color either. It's a beautiful hybrid between the two, creating this really incredible pastel lip color. I find that this color looks really good with all white outfits as well as for a nice "neutral" lip color when it comes to floral dresses!

2. MAC Candy Yum Yum because it reminds me of Nicki Minaj. Just kidding. Kind of. I just really love neon lipstick, okay? And if you have moisturized and exfoliated lips, this color is going to be incredible. It is just a fun pop of hot pink on your lips, the perfect statement for a warm and sunny day. It's not a retro matte formula, so it doesn't tug at the lips when you apply it and doesn't completely dry your lips out either. It's a pretty comfortable matte formula and the color payoff is out of this world.

3. NARS Dragon Girl because honestly, this is an all year round shade for me. It is the most perfect and most flattering red that I have ever owned. It stays on for an incredibly long time, it wears beautifully and it's matte without being extremely drying. My only complaint is that it needs to be sharpened and that causes it to lose some product, but that's a small price to pay for the perfect red lip.

4. Bite Velvet because a creamy rosy pink is a must have for a day to day look. This formula is so wonderful. It's not insanely long wearing because of its creamy nature, but it takes an incredible product to get me to not wear matte lips. This is my favorite lipstick to wear when I know I'm going to be running around a lot because it wears off evenly and is very low maintenance. Plus, it's a retractable lip pencil AKA no losing products to the evil sharpener!

5. NARS Heat Wave because red-orange lipsticks are just a fun conversation starter. This is a punchy orange-red shade that leans a little more toward orange than some of my others. It's really vibrant without being neon and it'd surprise you how much I manage to wear this, even given it's incredibly bold nature. The NARS matte formula is hands down my favorite lipstick formula ever. It is so creamy while still being completely matte and long-wearing. It's one of my most comfortable lipsticks in my collection, which is probably part of the reason why I reach for it so often.

6. Chanel Extatique because the packaging is awesome. I'm only kidding. The color is also awesome. It's this pretty medium pink with a sort of iridescence to it. I'm typically against any sort of frosty lip colors, but this one is so subtle that I truly don't mind it at all. I actually think it's kind of fun for the summer! It gives a faint layer of sheen over top of my lips without requiring any sort of gloss or highlighter applied to the center of my lips (my new favorite thing to do over my brown-y nudes!)

What are your favorite lip colors for the summer time? 

Friday, June 10, 2016

Positivitea Cup Five: #TreatYoSelf



If you can read or say the phrase "treat yo self" without the mental image of Tom and Donna from Parks and Recreation grinning widely, I personally commend you on such a high honor. I have never been able to do it and quite frankly, I don't see that changing for a while. And if you've never seen Parks and Rec, well, then I'm sure that sentence made no sense and you can just carry on to the next paragraph. Tom and Donna dedicate one day a year to an intense "treat yo self" session where they buy pretty much, well, everything. It's hilarious. Ten out of ten would recommend.

The idea of "treat yo self" is definitely a mantra that has been an underlying theme in my life since I started to make my own money. When I first saw that episode, everything made sense and I finally had an explanation for all of my frivolous spending. Some could say that I'm rewarding myself for mediocracy (I probably shouldn't reward myself simply for having a job...), but it makes me happy. Besides, my "treats" aren't full cashmere outfits or Batman suits (seriously just watch Parks and Recreation). Maybe it's a coffee or a plain old t-shirt or an eyeliner. And you know what, sometimes I want to reward myself for little things!

There's absolutely nothing wrong with celebrating the idea of ourselves. If we're proud of something that we've done, who is anyone to say that we can't pat ourselves on the back with a brand new lipstick? It's not like we're doing day-to-day things in our lives for rewards. We don't work hard to be praised. We work hard because we want to work hard, because we want to be proud of that work. A little "treat yo self" action never hurt anybody!

My recent treats have included everything from a venti iced green tea latte (with soy milk!) from Starbucks, a pair of the Matisse x Kate Bosworth 'Judith' boot/mule hybrids, and a full tank of gas when I only needed a half a tank. #Nice

What's your favorite way to #TreatYoSelf?

Thursday, June 9, 2016

Things I'm Loving

1. "Can't Stop The Feeling" by Justin Timberlake

There are two things I love in this life: dancing and Justin Timberlake. Unsurprisingly, the dearly beloved ex-boybander JT released a new killer jam that is impossible not to move to. I have to full body dance to this song. I need to tap my feet, snap my fingers, shimmy my shoulders. I unfortunately do not pull of these moves as well in real life as I do in my head, but I'd like to say that it's still entertaining. This song is much less R&B than his former songs, but it's still chock full of pop and soul and UGH, it's so good.

2. "Into You" by Ariana Grande

On the same pop wave, Ariana Grande in general has just been blowing the pants off of me. Girl has some insane pipes, as we've all known for years now. I absolutely cannot get enough of this song. It's fun and sexy and it just gets me singing. Terribly, I must add.

3. Cynthia Rowley Silver Eyeliner

Silver is typically not my color. Neither is blue, purple, any sort of warm pink tones...really, anything but gold and bronze are just Not For Me™. My cousin graciously gifted me this Cynthia Rowley eyeliner when I was in New York and I was unsure of how I wanted to wear it. Alas, one day I decided to wear it on my lower lash line for old times sake. I used to pop bright colors and golden tones onto my bottom lash line for a pop of color. Oddly enough, it doesn't look terrible! In fact, it looks quite cute! Since it's such a light color, it really makes my eyes pop and makes me look so much more awake. I tend to wear it on days when I'm (miraculously) not wearing winged eyeliner so the silver becomes the star of the show.



4. My New Haircut

I did it! I did it! I finally cut my hair again! And what better way to showcase it than with the dog filter addition? It's lighter, it's blonder, it's so much healthier. I am obsessed with my new hair, obsessed. It's been a long time coming and I'm so excited to start playing around with short hair again. It's going to take some time to adjust to styling hair that is a good four or so inches shorter, but I'm so ready for it.


5. Tobi Black Jumpsuit

I didn't realize until my terrible week with my sunburn that jumpsuits are the greatest clothing piece in existence, besides when you have to pee. As easy as dresses are, when you have sunburned legs (that then transform into peeling legs), you just want something lightweight and flowy. And I very well can't roll up to work in a pair of sweatpants. So the closest thing I got to a sweatsuit was this jumpsuit. It's easy, it's breezy, it's beautiful, it's not Covergirl, but it's still fantastic. Plus, you can layer over it! I've worn mine with a black t-shirt over top as well as a Wildfox jumper and both looked cute. All you have to do is put on or pull off a layer!

What have you been loving lately