The Perfect Fall Cocktail Dress

September is here, which means we are one step closer to cooler weather, holiday parties, and fancy occasions to dress up! This is my favorite time of the year, and I couldn’t be more excited to celebrate with a new array of cocktail dresses. After watching a back-to-back marathon of Ladies of London on bravo, I figured let’s hop across the pond to get inspired on what to wear.

A little tip if you have a black tie dinner or a more regal cocktail party, shop bridesmaids dresses. Typically, you can customize the dress in the color you wish, they have a better fit, and they are cheaper than a designer gown!  I went ahead and partnered up with Promtime.co.uk to show you how to find the perfect fall cocktail dress for much less. How much less? I am talking all under $100.

fall dresses for under 100

Dress one is a classic little black dress with a sweetheart neckline. I love that the tulle has polka dot detailing! I find it adds a soft feminine touch. This is a great dress for any fancy occasion because of how versatile it is. Add a shall and clutch to complete the outfit. Voila, you are set. It is priced at $77!

The second dress is a gorgeous satin, pleated, A-line dress. This is perfect for a formal brunch, or to attend a holiday play.  There are many colors to choose from, I would go with a navy blue to make it more festive for the season. All you need is to add a cardigan! This is priced at $70.

Last but certainly not least, the red structured dress is ready to make any woman a bombshell this fall season. The bow detailing and tulip hemline adds just enough personality to this look without going overboard. If you are not a fan of the red hue, there are plenty of colors to choose from. Personally, this is my number one pick for a holiday party. I can see myself pairing the dress with black detailed stockings and crush velvet block heels for a sweet yet fierce look. Priced at only $70, it is a steal!

Which look would you wear?

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One Last Summer Fling

This summer came and went in a nano second. As a last hoorah here is a fun, colorful photo shoot. This was taken in Astoria, Queens; a neighborhood I am all too familiar with. If you ever visit New York City, I highly suggest taking the N or Q train out to taste some amazing Greek food.

The dress is from Mango in a fuschia and pleated tiered detailing. I love how soft the dress is and the way it flows beautifully in the summer breeze. I decided to wear the nude wedges and tan purse by Rebecca Minkoff to keep the look casual. The dress would also look incredible with black accessories for an evening attire.

How are you wrapping up the summer season? Link below your end of summer posts if you wish!

one last summer fling

summer style fashion. labor day

summer fling style

end of summer fashion style

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Summer to Fall Outfit Ideas

Goodbye summer, hello fall! It is that time of year to prepare yourself for cooler weather and new clothing options. However, it is simple to transition from summer to fall with key fashion pieces. September tends to be a fickle month ranging from warm days to cooler nights. Here are ways to style some fall looks without buying a whole new wardrobe and wearing your summer favorites just a tad longer! I provided links to similar looking pieces in case you want to recreate the look.

Summer to Fall transitional looks:

1) In outfit one, I chose a summer dress in a leopard print and threw on a loose black kimono sweater. To make it more fall appropriate, I added red pointed heels and a soft black and gold chain clutch. This outfit is perfect for an evening date!

2) Outfit two, I took my classic denim and white tee shirt to a new level by pairing it with a thick checkered sweater. For shoes, I went for black booties that are comfortable and just spells fall! This is a great look for a casual day walking through the farmers market, to a movie night.

3) Look three is my favorite loaded with personality. I am not ready to retire my mint green taffeta skirt just yet so I threw on a button down gray sweater with jeweled beading on top. I buttoned the sweater all the way down except for the last three and used the excess material to tie the sweater into a tight knot leaving a very chic finish. This is so perfect for a girls day shopping or for a much-needed coffee chat.

Summer to Fall transitional looks

summer to fall outfit

summer to fall transitional looks

I love this option of styling. It allows me to save my fashion budget for October, November, and December where the climate is cooler and there are tons of fun fashion options to indulge in.

For more inspiration on how to style for warm days to cool nights (aka September weather) check out the interview I did with Ensambl! We talk about ways to layer up in ways that are convenient yet chic.

The links are affiliated via rewardStyle.

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Fall Booties You Need Now

My favorite season is almost here, and I cannot wait one minute longer. I eagerly await the crisp fall air and the chance to layer up. A top must have for fall is of course, cute booties! I love booties that are comfortable and perfect to dress down for long days at work or sight-seeing. For those reasons, I love wedged booties or low block heeled booties. I am slightly obsessing over the thought of pairing these babies with distressed denim for a cool walk through central park.

For nights out, a sleek leather bootie always does the trick! I am seeing a lot of nude colors, as well as classic black. Two other trends that will be fun to play with this fall are cut-out heels and fringe. It is a great way to add a little extra flair to an outfit while creating new fall looks.

I primarily stay away from open-toed booties. They seem impractical for the cold weather and hard to wear during summer and spring. How do you like to pair your booties? Let me know in the comment section below!

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Back to School with Boohoo!

Hi friends!

I wanted to make a special post today about a brand I truly love with all my heart and soul. That brand is Boohoo! I was first introduced to the British company a couple years ago at the iFabbo conference in San Francisco. I instantaneously fell for their trendy designs and affordable pricing. The clothes are fun and at a price point that I can experiment and mix it up without breaking the bank. Plus all of the representatives were super fun and kind to us bloggers. Mega mega points on my score card.

Since back to school shopping is in full swing and Boohoo has unbeatable prices (starting at $7), I wanted to create my top looks for fall. I’ve cultivated all my favorites must-haves for the upcoming season. Even if you aren’t going back school, these are perfect options to stay stylish for fall. Hurry, for the next 12 hours you can get all new merch 30% off!

Happy Shopping!
ellese (2)

 

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A few of my favorite things

Recently I received a text from my friend asking for a list of my favorite natural, healthy products. Finally hitting her, as well as many others, the importance of being aware of what we place on our skin and in our bodies. Unfortunately for us, our government has yet to take actions to keep us safe, read all about it in Let’s Talk Natural Beauty. Until then we are forced to figure out what science is placing into our daily beauty regimens.

To help, here are products that I use and have check with EWG’s Skin Deep Database. Also, the Shop will always newly added natural products and where to buy them. So feel free to check back as often as you like to see what is in!

If you are looking to see how your current products are rated, you can use the databases listed under tools. I suggest anything rate 0-3 as safe; 4,5 are warnings; 6-10 stop using immediately.

TIP: NOT ALL PRODUCTS FROM THE SAME COMPANY ARE SAFE! For instance lip balm from EOS is rated a 1, but their hand cream is a 9. Each one includes different ingredients, check before buying.

If you use any natural products, link them below!

 

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Does Tom’s Deodorant Really Work?

Recently, I have been looking for a new natural deodorant to use. I have had my fair share of disappointments in the past. Ranging from deodorants that stained, didn’t control odor, and others that irritated my skin. I had previously tried Tom’s of Maine deodorant before, and it fell into the category of not able to control odor, AKA I smelled! That’s the worse.

However, stopping into my local CVS, I realized my only option for natural deodorant was Tom’s. Peeking around the corner to see if I could find anything else, I reluctantly picked up a pack and figured this might be the best time to see if anything has changed. I did read on the label that there is an improved fragrance, and the packaging looked slightly different than I remembered. Here is hoping that the outcome is slightly different as well.

To my greatest relief when checking with Skin Deep’s database, the deodorant I picked up, Tom’s of Main long lasting, aluminum free deodorant stick in wild lavender, is registered as a 1! That is a fantastic score for a deodorant. Now I just have to see if it works.

My ultimate test is the gym. I decided that very next day, we had to put this deodorant through the ringer and go for a long run. I ran 3 miles at a gym that was overheated and poorly ventilated. Yet I didn’t smell! I was sweaty, but there was no odor. Since then, I ‘ve been using the deodorant consistently and still have not had a problem like I had before. I do still sweat when it is hot and humid, but I’ll take that over using nasty antiperspirants that are loaded in chemicals.

The greatest part is that the price is affordable, compared to other natural deodorants. It is less than $7, half of what I use to pay. I think I found my new favorite healthy deodorant!

Do you use Tom’s of Maine products? If so let me know what you think in the comments below!

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Sources:

“Tom’s of Maine Long Lasting Natural Aluminum Free Deodorant Stick, Wild Lavender.” || Skin Deep® Cosmetics Database. N.p., n.d. Web. 16 July 2015. <http://www.ewg.org/skindeep/product/463292/Tom%27s_of_Maine_Long_Lasting_Natural_Aluminum_Free_Deodorant_Stick%2C_Wild_Lavender/>.

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Is La Mer worth the $2,000 price tag?

There are a plethora of creams and skin care products on the market that register at an obscene price per ounce. La Mer being one of the most recognizable, pricing anywhere from $85 to $2,000. That is a whole lot of money for a cream! But is it worth it?

Typically, no. In fact, some of these extraordinarily expensive creams have the highest toxicity levels. La Mer cream registers a 9 in toxicity containing chemicals that affect the  developmental and reproductive organs (Think Dirty App). Culprits such as fragrance, petrolatum (petroleum jelly), zinc gluconate, methylchloroisothiazolinone, and methylisothiazolinone are found in this $2,000 per 16.9 oz cream. Not exactly what I would want to smear over my face for such a hefty price tag.

However, the lifting intensifier spray is registered as a 4  on the EWG’s Skin Deep database. The toxin, propylparaben, is found in the product causing the rating to go up a bit but still not as harmful as the cream. The highest risk is endocrine disruption. But don’t worry it only costs a cool $170.

My experience? Just because they are expensive, doesn’t always mean they are healthy for you. Certain organic, and natural products are pricier but often range around $30-$60. For these products, companies use better ingredients without preservatives. Anything $100 and above, I begin to question the quality and if it is worth the price tag.

What are you thoughts and opinions? Do you use products with hefty price tags?

 

“LA MER THE LIFTING INTENSIFIER (2007 Formulation).” || Skin Deep® Cosmetics Database. N.p., n.d. Web. 10 July 2015. <http://www.ewg.org/skindeep/product/143965/LA_MER_THE_LIFTING_INTENSIFIER_%282007_formulation%29/>.

“Think Dirty App.” Think Dirty. N.p., n.d. Web. 10 July 2015. <http://www.thinkdirtyapp.com/>.

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Fresh Summer Look with Tarte

 

The summer heat is wonderful for BBQ’s and pool days, but not so great for our makeup. Overhearing constant complaints of eyeliner running and foundation not staying in place, I figured why not talk about makeup that will last even on the hottest days. Using Tarte makeup, I created a beautiful, fresh, summer look.

tarte

 

tarte makeup

Always begin with clean skin. Before bed, I make sure my makeup is completely washed away from the day. Not only is it healthy for your skin, but the products you place on will last longer and will be more effective! Microcleansers, such as Clinique Sonic Purifying brush, are wonderful tools to assure all the gunk is gone. Once with a clean face, begin by adding a sunscreen moisturizer. I love Tartegaurd all natural sunscreen with SPF 30. It is light and absorbent. If you are in the sun for hours on end, make sure to reapply your sunscreen in order to keep your face protected and free from premature aging.

Next select either a BB cream or light foundation. My go to is Tarte amazonian clay foundation in light sand. This stuff stays for the whole day without wearing off. It is also easy to apply, especially with the soft moisturizer from Tartegaurd. I have been wearing this specific foundation for nearly three years.

Adding a kiss of blush or bronzer will help give your cheeks a little summer pop while not weighing down your fresh look. Here I am using the Thrilled Tarte blush. I also love Park Avenue Princess bronzer to highlight and contrast. I recommend using one or the other to perfect your clean summer look.

For a day look, I added a light pink LipSurgence called Wishful. It is the perfect color without being overly dramatic. I also love lip stains for summer becuase they are less likely to melt off in the humidity and heat. If you are heading out for the night, I love Tarte’s eyeliner called emphasEYES and a swipe of Gifted mascara. The mascara especially really opens up my eyes and elongates my lashes. Plus, it has never clumped on my lashes before! I believe that is a miracle.

There you have it! The perfect, stay-still, summer look. What are you tips and tricks when it comes to makeup that lasts? Let me know in the comments below.

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