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Beaches Beware

Ok ladies, whether you like it or not, Summer is here [if you live in California, you’re probably about to pass out from heat stroke today]. & with that comes bikini’s. Yes. Those dreaded pieces of string that you use to “cover” yourself in front of your friends, husband, boyfriend, girlfriend, neighbors, while cleaning your car, throwing a pool party, or while dancing to the latest Beyoncé song on a boat…wherever you wear yours, you should feel confident & beautiful doing so.

Thus, I’m sharing with you my personal favorite bathing suit finds for this 2015 heat, so you can drop the towel & come out of hiding with a big smile & newfound confidence.

liner upLiner Up Bikini Top, $80, by Lovers + Friends

Screen Shot 2015-05-04 at 3.36.34 PMCross The Line Bikini Bottoms, $68, by Lovers + Friends

Screen Shot 2015-05-04 at 3.36.54 PMStripe It Down One Piece, $148, by Lovers + Friends

Screen Shot 2015-05-04 at 4.12.20 PMCloudbreak Bikini, Bird of Paradise, $145, by Acacia Swimwear

Screen Shot 2015-05-04 at 4.26.05 PMBronx One Piece, Bird of Paradise, $212, Acacia Swimwear

Screen Shot 2015-05-04 at 4.28.06 PMBronx One Piece, Pacific Tides, $212, by Acacia Swimwear

tori praver nanda top & bottomNanda, Tori Praver Swimwear, $110, by Tori Praver

tori praver kalinda bottomsKalinda, Tori Praver Swimwear, $121, by Tori Praver

tori praer krishna one pieceKrishna, Tori Praver Swimwear, $165, by Tori Praver

out from underOut From Under Two Piece, Red, Urban Outfitters, $80, by Urban Outfitters

mirage halterMirage One Piece, Urban Outfitters, $154, by Blue Life

Whether you’re ready for it or not, it’s time to face those awful dressing room mirrors & lights, & find the right suit for you this season. Just remember, the key to feeling beautiful is feeling like yourself. Don’t buy a suit just because you’re size 2 friends loves it or even because I love it; make smart purchases & be the goddess you are, for you. Plus, has any guy ever told you, “Meh, I don’t really want to see you half naked on a beach or by a pool with a beverage in your hand”…yeah, I didn’t think so.

Xx.

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The Biz

I’ve had quite a few people message me about the following topic & I really wanted to take some time & thought on this one. Let’s talk business attire; the one area of the fashion world that somewhat limits our options & freedom for authenticity. However, I strongly believe the following advice will bend this sad principle & help every heel-wearing, blazer-sporting, mega business babe show her voice & personality in & outside of the office.  [Keep in mind, this all varies depending upon where you work & their dress code requirements.]

The big hitting question: what do I purchase? There are so many ways to wear business attire & blend in pieces from your personal, daily wardrobe, but the key to looking professional is finding timeless pieces that make you feel confident. Here are some tried & true rules:

slacked

  • Find The New Classics: purchase pieces that hold longevity. Sweaters, button-ups, flowing blouses & slacks are ideal. These pieces mix & match flawlessly & will never go out of style, but don’t be afraid to play it up. The shapes of these classic pieces are ever changing to keep up with the fashion world, so I say go for a wide-legged slack & a statement belt, as these slight adjustments can change the entire era of an outfit.

office attire

  • Be Reasonable: sky-high pumps are not office friendly. Instead, opt for a pair that won’t make your feet feel like balloons. Generally, a one to two inch heel is the “safe zone” for office wear & try to select a pair in the nude, cream, black or tan family, as these will move fluidly throughout your entire wardrobe. I usually go for a pump that I can wear outside of the office to validate my investment & assure me that I’m still respecting my fashion voice.

pencil skirt

  • Draw The Line: pencil skirts are the perfect way to spice up a blank or boring office wardrobe, but be picky, as length is everything with this look. Walking the line of office appropriate & chic can be tricky with any leg-showing item, so keep it safe at knee-length & you won’t ever fail.

blazed

  • Blazer City: if my previous posts on blazers weren’t inspiring & intense enough, I will once again remind you of my blazer obsession. They are the perfect office attire addition & move incredibly well between business meetings & your after work glass of wine with a friend. Find yourself three favorites: one black or grey, one white or tan & one bright or bold. Having these three staples in your closet will dress up ANY look & make you feel chic & put together. Rememer: the true fit of a blazer is in the shoulders; if the stitching doesn’t line up with your shoulders, it doesn’t fit.

be bold

  • Add Some Pop: nothing says “put together” with more intention than a hint of creativity & personality in your outfit. Even in the most traditional work environments, a light pop of color is acceptable [& just plain fun]. Try to stick to pale pinks, blues & even light lavenders & plums. Remember: bright tops = muted bottoms. Never do both with work wear.

pleated

  • Slacked: the most important investment for your business wardrobe are pants. However, the 80’s are over & there are hundreds of options for business women today. The choice is yours, but I always believe that a fun pair of cropped pants or drawstring pants [particularly ones with strong pleats] can add interest & focus to an outfit, making it stand out among the sea of monotonous office wear. Not to mention, printed & non-printed pants are everywhere right now, so the options are basically endless.

city streets

  • Know Your Environment: if you spend your entire day out on the streets of San Francisco or New York running from appointment to appointment, then be realistic about your footwear & outfit. Always opt for slacks versus skirts or dresses & a fun pointed-toe flat; the wind-chill could seriously freeze your bones, your heels may slow down your pace & your focus will be on how quickly you can finish your meetings & ice your swollen sausage toes when you get home or where your next cab is because you can’t walk anymore. No one wants to lose agility & work ethic because of their attire, particularly your boss.

& last, but not least, keep learning what pieces & shapes work for your body & your body alone. Even if Amy in the corner cubical is rocking some amazing jump-suit & five inch stilettos, it may not be right for you. The entire purpose of fashion is about finding your own style & feeling beautiful doing it, so try not to be susceptible to trends…but you already knew that, because you’re a mega powerhouse business woman who blazes her own trail. Duh.

TGIT. Xx.

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Buckle Up

I had a curious reader ask if I wouldn’t mind discussing belts & which ones work for which body types. Seeing as Summer is [nearly] here & dresses & skirts are about to dominate our wardrobes, belts can be the perfect addition to almost any outfit. They help break up single-print fabrics, they add shape & contour to a waistline & well, help keep our pants up [I know, people still actually use them for this, ha]. Let’s get to it…

The way you decide to buckle or tie your belt[s] is entirely up to you; I always say the more creative the better. For some fun examples & fresh new ways to acheive this look, head over here to get the scoop. What matters even more than this fun styling trick, however, is fit.

hip line

Pear-Shaped Babes: opt for thin belts, particularly if you plan on wearing them at your hips. Also note that the more belting the better, as belts for your body type highlight your tiny waist. Blending single-tone & printed belts is perfect for your wardrobe, as each piece will elongate you & help bring the outfit together.

belly button

Hour-Glass Babes: thin to medium belts are staples for your body type, as your waist is also one of your smallest points. When rocking a skirt or dress, belting higher up on the waistline [right over the belly-button] will reset the focal point to your ribcage.

low belt

Petite Babes: don’t over-do it; thin, simple, monochromatic belts are in your wheelhouse, as over-embellishing could make you appear larger than you truly are. When pairing belts with dresses or skirts be sure to wear them right at your hip line, to give you definition & shape.

high rise belt

Apple-Shaped Babes: the higher the belt the better; wearing belts under the bust-line will help draw attention to your thinnest point [as well as give the girls an added boost]. Opt for large, wide belts to tighten & accent your waistline & throw in pops of color for added focus.

Last but absolutely not least, trust your instincts. If you don’t feel like the best version of yourself then try working in other accessories or colors. One of the hardest things to teach my clients is that styling takes time & work; the first outfit isn’t always the right outfit. Be patient, don’t get frustrated & remember to love your bones, they’re the only ones you get.

Happy Buckling, babes. Xx.

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CONFESSIONS OF A MAKEUP BAG

Lyric was originated to focus on wardrobes & styling, but I’ve noticed an incredibly important & under-appreciated part of a woman’s wardrobe; her makeup.  While I won’t sit here & proclaim to know all-things-makeup, I do in fact know the importance of cleanliness & maintenance of your beauty products. As displayed above, today was cleaning day & I’ve decided to share the knowledge I have, my tips & tricks to keeping clean brushes & makeup bags, & some shocking statistics that may have you buying double the soap in your household. Here goes [squeamish ones beware]…

The Chicago Examiner conducted a survey & found the following results:

  • 56% of women go months without replacing their mascara [hello styes, nice to meet you]
  • 55% of women admit to sleeping with their makeup on daily [poor pillowcases]
  • 53% of women simply “forget” to wash their makeup brushes [bacteria heaven]

I noticed long ago that my skin would break out along by cheek bones, nose & forehead when I didn’t wash my bronzer brush & even my eyebrows would get a blemish or two when I didn’t clean my brow brush. Then, during my [broke] college years, I would randomly wake up with a stye on my eyelid, never noticing the relationship between sharing makeup, old makeup & my new red, eye bump. I decided it was time to change these frustrating circumstances & become aware of my makeup cleanliness & have since never looked back. To this day I clean my brushes, bags, scissors, applicators & tweezers weekly. Here’s my never-fail process:

brushes

BRUSHES:

  1. Hand wash every item in your bag with warm water & soap
  2. Grab your daily face-wash & saturate every bristled item in your bag with a drop of this product
  3. Wash thoroughly until bristles are back to their original color
  4. Repeat this process with your liquid &/or powder applicators

bag

MAKEUP BAG:

  1. Flip bag(s) inside out
  2. Wash & scrub heavily with hot water & soap
  3. Repeat this process, but with your daily face-wash [be sure not to miss the corners]
  4. Let air-dry inside out

trashed

MAKEUP SHELF LIFE:

While there are no legal requirements for makeup expiration, there are certainly suggested dates that have been compiled over the years. I recommend keeping a log of dates for each new piece of makeup as it’s purchased. Regardless, here are some tried & true timelines for your makeup:

  • Mascara: throw out your mascara [regardless of how expensive it was] after 3 months
  • Eye-Pencils: let these babies go after 2 years [keeping a clean sharpen each use]
  • Eye-shadow: dry shadows can last up to 2 years, while liquid shadows should be tossed after 12 months
  • Lipsticks: these stainers should be ditched after 2 years of use [or non-use]
  • Powders/Blushes: cream blushes & foundations can be held onto for up to a year, while powders can last up to 2 years
  • Foundation & Concealer: liquid concealer should be let go of at 12 months, while stick & moisturizing foundations can last up to 18 months

If you commit to this process weekly, you will find that your skin & pores will love you more than ever. “EVERY WEEK!?” you ask…as this experiment shows, bacteria can start growing on your brushes as quickly as 24 hours after use. Um, gross!

Your wardrobe & overall appearance is not isolated to just clothing, but rather the entire end result. These steps will elevate your look & maintain your overall well-being. Who doesn’t want that?

Happy cleaning, beauties. Xx.