Julep Beauty Haul

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Eh, make-up less this morning… a true #iwokeuplikethis. Even the messy mane… but it’s for good reason. I want to talk about my skin and how happy I am with it right now. Full disclosure that I still have areas to work on like my under eye circles and my pores still have a ways to go – BUT… progress has been amazing!

Julep – I am SO excited about these products and for a few reasons, starting with the fact that ingredients list did N O T scare me! I hate it when I buy products and have zero clue how to decipher the ingredients list. You know what I’m talking about…. the list of ingredients that you can’t even begin to pronounce! Usually those long and intimidating ingredient lists boast a strong chemical scent too. Some strong enough to even burn your eyes! Not for me! This has been a big part of why I’m drawn to this newly found Korean Skincare brand!

Let’s just dive right in…

Let me tell you first about one of my favorites so far… it really does feel like ‘What My Skin Needs’, so it’s name is fitting of course! It’s described as a restorative skin milk and feels absolutely fabulous when I apply it. But what’s in it?!

Key Ingredients:

Jojoba Oil heals skin and locks in hydration.
Argan Oil repairs and replenishes skin with essential fatty acids.
Coconut Oil calms skin with natural anti-inflammatory properties.
Olive Oil keeps skin soft and supple.
Squalane (plant derived) absorbs rapidly and helps skin soak up the entire oil blend.

Full Ingredient List:

WATER, SQUALANE, CAPRYLIC/CAPRIC TRIGLYCERIDE, SIMMONDSIA CHINENSIS (JOJOBA) SEED OIL, GLYCERIN, CARTHAMUS TINCTORIUS (SAFFLOWER) SEED OIL, ARGANIA SPINOSA (ARGAN) KERNEL OIL, HYDROGENATED LECITHIN, GLUCONOLACTONE, COCOS NUCIFERA (COCONUT) OIL, OLEA EUROPAEA (OLIVE) FRUIT OIL, CAPRYLOYL GLYCERIN/SEBACIC ACID COPOLYMER, DIHEPTYL SUCCINATE, RICINUS COMMUNIS (CASTOR) SEED OIL, XANTHAN GUM, CITRIC ACID

Literally the only thing here that I needed to look up was caprylic/capric triglyceride it’s derived from coconut oil and glycerine. Commonly found in beauty products.

My skin is more oily than dry and I’ve always thought that it would not even be possible for me to use oils because they’d make my skin, especially my t-zone even more oily! Which has been such a struggle because I love using oils! So as I researched more and more about the products and the misconception with oils making you oily… of course after reading the benefits I had to try them out for myself. I am FIRST to admit that I’ll try anything and I’m always on the look for what works for me and when I find things that work, that sets the standard! Anything else then has to exceed the current expectation.

I’ll share my expectation for Julep or specifically what I am currently looking for: I need a skincare routine that is hydrating but not too oily. I’m looking for exfoliation that doesn’t damage my skin. I really want to reduce the appearance of pores while not further irritating my extremely sensitive skin. I do not want a product packed with more chemicals than your run of the mill paint thinner either…. seriously some products are just scary. I want it to smell nice, feel great on my skin and provide results!

So far, after weeks of use – twice daily… I am completely shook. I noticed results pretty much IMMEDIATELY to be honest. The little cute kaolin clay konjac sponge is seriously AHHH MAZZE ING. I am already looking forward to using it again the second I’m done washing my face with it… I haven’t used the green tea or the charcoal versions yet, but I can’t wait!! Using this with the hydrating cleansing oil that not only cleanses my face but whisks away even my most stubborn make-up… it just blows my mind. I get SO annoyed when a cleanser cannot remove my make-up… because I am really not looking for a million steps. This product found me at the perfect time!

The ‘What Your Skin Needs’ facial milk freaked me out at first, let’s be honest… being a ‘milk’. But I was blown away by how amazing it felt on my skin and as I said before, it’s now a favorite! It is not super heavy and absorbs quickly so it’s not even a problem using it before applying my make up. I mix it at night with a few drops of the ‘Boost Your Radiance’ rosehip seed facial oil, yes – me, oily girl is putting oils on my face. I know, I know! I also follow it with the ‘Night Shift’ facial mask… and when I wake up my skin feels smooth and refreshed!

Seriously in all honestly I’m amazed…. My skin has NEVER looked better and for the price?! Staappp. I bought this adorable starter kit at Ulta for $49 bucks!! I also got the ‘Love Your Bare Face’ detoxifying stick, the rosehip seed facial oil and the ‘With a Twist’ mascara which I’m not super loving… but I’m working with it! I just wish it provided more of a wow factor with volume! I have length I need the spunk!!

Ok, ok! So overall – seriously you need to give this Korean Skincare a chance! No gimmicks, no scary ingredients! I personally feel like trying out skincare and make-up is like shopping for shoes, you have to find something that really works for you! Your personal complexion and how your skin reacts could be a completely different story but when I say I’m L I V I N G for these right now… I am. I cannot believe how my skin is reacting to the oils… I was prepared to turn into an absolute grease monster, but no! Just dewey and a subtle glow, which I’m loving! I’ll include a no make-up selfie below!

The texture of my skin, my facial scaring, dryness, combination to oily skin and overall hydration has significantly improved! Even applying my make-up I notice that I’m using less and less product overall! I still have some areas I want to work on, but hey – I still have plenty of Julep products I have yet to try!

Thank you so much for the suggestion and keep them coming So happy with my latest product tests and it’s so good to find products that produce results!! I hope you’ll give these a try and remember that if you purchase from Ulta you can return it if you end up hating it!

Are you happy with your skincare?? What are you using? Let me know in the comments, tell me about your current routine!

Check out their full lines of make-up, skincare and even nails here or at your local Ulta.

Xo

 

Letting GO… Closet Revamp!

IMG_1389Does anyone else struggle with revamping your closet each season? Either we’re running out of room or running out of money… right?! The weather changes and just like that we need this or that, but making it happen is another issue. I have a suggestion for you this year… clean out your closet. I know sounds simple but I’m adding a twist, don’t just give it all away – SELL some of your higher quality, best condition pieces!! This will make some of your seasonal closet updates less painful on your wallet, make room for them in your closet AND keeps new and exciting pieces in your wardrobe!

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve thought about or run across something in my closet that I know I’m never going to wear again… and sometimes I just toss it into the donate pile. But before you know it, you’ve got to replace it with an updated similar item! I think that the key to a solid and reliable closet is one that you’re WEARING, full of clothes that frequent your body and are quality pieces! You don’t need a thousand piece wardrobe to do this… I’m currently on a mission to really downsize my closet and keep it a more manageable size. I want a few things to stay long term, but a lot of it I’ll let go after the season ends and transition new items in! SO excited!

So how am I selling them? On Poshmark, Mercari and Thread Up! It’s been easy, pretty darn successful and overall a good experience so far! I have a few items I’m thinking about offering through eBay, but I’ve never ventured there as a seller so I’m a little overwhelmed by the process so we’ll see! Most of my successes have been on Poshmark and Thread Up and it’s so easy to get started! I literally sat in my closet and started sorting through what I wanted to keep, sell or donate! After I had a substantial amount of items to sell I took pictures and posted! Easy day!

Now if you struggle with what to keep or part ways with I have a little trick that I do… Once a year I take my hangers and turn them around backwards… ALL backwards. It doesn’t take up a lot of time and doing so is a HUGE help in determining what you’re wearing! As you take items out of your closet to wear them (and actually do wear them.. not try on and put back), turn the hanger BACK around in the right direction. After a period of time, say 30 days or whatever you deem appropriate… if you haven’t worn something – do you need to keep it??

I’m a firm believer in not keeping things anymore just because I’m either trying to fit back into them or I haven’t had an occasion to wear them to yet. Usually when the time comes and I can fit into those pieces again or I have a special occasion come up, I want to shop for something NEW. The trends change, my eye for the specific style may have changed… do not hang on to something if you aren’t wearing it! Someone else can benefit from it being donated or selling it! Insert Elsa solo…. ‘Let it Goooooo!’.

Now if it hasn’t sold, either try another platform for sales or toss it. Just because it hasn’t sold does not mean that is a sign to keep it in your closet. This just could mean it’s not appealing to others either! HA! Or maybe you’ve got it priced too high… I price things smart in the beginning so that I have room to discount them further if they don’t fly off the racks. It’s been a pretty good method to my madness…

Now keep your money flowing into a special fund to UPDATE your closet… remember you’re letting this stuff go so you have extra funds to put back in there. Take a few days and plan your attack! What do you need? Where are you going to get the best deals?? Check out your favorite stores, websites and see if you can come up with a game plan! I like to look online first, seeing who has what and from there I decide which stores I want to shop in person. Sometimes I end up buying online anyway because they could be cheaper with coupon codes but I love to try on clothes before I buy!

When you shop, keep in mind the staples you already have and the pieces that you kept in your closet. Try to buy things that are going to compliment some of your favorites so that they don’t end up being a piece that you end up not wearing. Remember you want to make your closet more valuable to you, you want as many endless outfit opportunities as possible.. not more of the same pieces!

So get it going, get started and remember that your closet doesn’t have to be huge to be versatile and exciting! You can maintain a smaller and frequently evolving closet that keeps you excited and looking forward to getting dressed!!

Xo
K

nautical C H I C

28660761_10100526681245196_889159844903256064_oI shared some amazing finds from Loft last week and as I was planning out my own purchases, I had Spring/Summer style in mind! You guys know I am (trying…) shrinking my closet WAY down and to do so I need to make the most out of every piece. So nautical style to me isn’t prints with tropical flowers or anchor patterns… it’s color schemes and accessories!

When I think of nautical style I think navy blues, chambray materials, white linen, stripes and accessories made of fibrous straws or ropes. I love the casual feel and also enjoy the versatility because I can dress it all up if I want too! I mean I live at the beach but Spring to me means vacations, summer is coming… Tis’ the season for costal, casual comfort! So if you’ll notice almost all my latest finds speak to the coastal comfy vibes I’m after! So let’s talk about coastal!

28660778_10100526682362956_4874627807528878080_oToday I just HAD to wear these ridiculously adorable tennies…. I found them at my local Marshalls this weekend and they were an absolute steal at just $20! And if you want them… I’ve scoured the internet and I CANNOT find them online! You’re supposed to be able to find anything online right?! They’re made by Nautica, called the Conaway Knot/Chambray Stripe. So if you want them… GO to Marshall’s like, now!

Since they were the ‘anchor’ to my outfit today, I started thinking what I wanted to wear with them and of course – white jeans!! These are some of my absolute favorites because they’re stretchy and super washable… which is important with anything white! They’re also on SALE right now, 40% off! Shop them here for just $29.97! That’s a great price for an awesome pair of jeans!

It was SO cold out today… but I didn’t let that keep me from wearing what I wanted, I just had to wear a jacket. This one’s a favorite from H&M! I’ve had it forever but I found one I actually like even better!! HERE! It’s longer too and would have came in handy today while I was running around in this blustery weather!! I stuck with grey because it went with my bag and I think it kept the coastal vibes but you also could have went with a pink or even bright white! But a jacket was a MUST today!

Underneath that essential layer I was wearing my favorite top right now… it’s a navy cold shoulder tee that I scored during the 40% off tops sale last week! I love this top… Maybe a little too much?? But that’s ok… I really wanted to wear it today withOUT the jacket, but I’ll save that for the repeat when I bring out my sunhat and sandals!!

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This top is now available in ALL sizes, that’s right… Loft realized the importance of carrying styles in sizes to fit all beautiful women in ALL shapes and sizes! So happy they made this much needed change! Find this one here for just $39.50! The sleeves have the cutest ruffle detail and honestly it’s my favorite part! This top isn’t your lightweight tee either, it holds its shape and you can see/feel the quality!

I’ve been excited to share the details about this outfit too because of the sales… especially these jeans. American Eagle denim has been a favorite for me always because of the fit. Because I really need petite jeans and they’re not always the easiest to find… AE’s aren’t petite either, but the fit is almost perfect. They have great stretch and just fit well. I’ve always loved their jeans. Usually I can catch them on sale too! I know the Loft sale on tops is over, but if you sign up for their emails you automatically get a coupon that you can use and it’s a GOOD coupon! Making these pieces not only budget friendly but valuable since they’re so versatile!

I’m just easing into spring and I have some adorable spring accessories on the way! I’m talking straw/tassel totes, a new swimsuit cover up and fun shoes! SO excited!

Afterthought: I had a few questions about my necklace today so I’m going to link it here too! Chris got it for me a few years ago while we were stationed in Japan and I love it!

Xo,
Kate

Loft Haul – What made the cut!

Yesterday I got tired of wearing the same ol’ same that I keep pulling out of my closet. My #rtr order isn’t here yet and I’m seriously running out of clothes. Overnight I had received an email from Loft talking about new arrivals and a sale starting – 40% off full priced tops and you earn Loft Cash too!! So I said ‘that’s it…’ threw on some clothes and headed out the door. **Anytime a store says new arrivals… this also means A LOT of new CLEARANCE because you know they had to make room!**

I went to my favorite local loft that has a spectacular petite section! Most are just a little nook or a corner… this one is half the store! I’m short, curvy and petite clothes fit SO much better than regular cuts. If you’re on the shorter side, maybe have a short torso or a low waist… TRY PETITE. You don’t have to be a size 2, most petite sections go up to 16/18. My mother had to talk me into trying out petite sizes years ago and I’ve honestly never looked back. It’s the solution to clothes that leave you looking frumpy, armholes that are too big, pants that go up to your boobs and tops that look like tunics.

Now – In this haul almost everything that I try on is ‘petite’ but I’ll specify some items that I tried to make work. Some I got, some I didn’t you’ll see! ALL off these items are available on loft.com some are on clearance too! YES!
1. Long Sleeve Vintage Soft Tee $19.99 and additional 40% OFF!
Wearing a Large, not petite!

Every Spring I am on the hunt for a new lightweight long sleeve tee in either white or a pretty pastel color. I’ve told you guys I don’t love baking in the sun… this is my solution. This one is perfect! The fit was great, even though it wasn’t petite and I sized up to make it a little more comfy! The arms are a smidge too long, but not so much that it bothers me! The scoop neck is also something I don’t usually love, but this one wasn’t so extreme!

Grab this one ladies, perfect for jeans, a statement necklace and your favorite summer sandals! I did!

2. 5 Pocket Camo Leggings $69
Wearing a 10 Petite, I rolled up the legs a bit just because I like it! LOL!

These were so comfortable and honestly I loved the camo! I thought it would be too busy and accentuate my thick thighs, but the pattern wasn’t loud or bold… just right! I didn’t grab these though because I want to find some shorts for the summer… I’m going to stick it out with the bottoms I have to get through the cold weather!

The stretch on these was great, they passed the bend over test meaning my entire ass wouldn’t be exposed if I dropped anything or needed to tie my shoe! The olives and greens were neutral enough and light enough to keep your options open with tops and I especially think they would pair well if you had a cute lightweight bomber jacket and a grey tee! Accessorize and throw on your favorite tennies… out the door!

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3. Cutout V-Neck Sweater $39.99 and additional 40% OFF!
Wearing a Large, not petite. Didn’t get this one because it’s just too big, but I AM buying in petite online because I loved it so much!

The color in the first photo isn’t the best, but I loved the creamy white color of this sweater which is more true in the one on the right. It’s light weight enough that it’s even going to be perfect on those cooler winter nights! The cutout was sexy and I just can’t wait to wear this one out to dinner with Chris… pump it up with some statement earrings, sans necklace because the detail is enough. It’s NOT itchy, super soft!

4. Drama Queen Top $9.88!!
Wearing a Medium Petite!

Ok I got murdered on this poll on my instastories today! BUT I got this top anyway and I’m going to tell you why! Sometimes pieces like this leave us second guessing ourselves… but I loved it, I almost bought it when it was full price! It’s a great weight, perfect for tucking into any bottoms and it’s bright white, so classic!

I picture this top tucked into a skirt or a belted pair of shorts… I see it as adding a fun unexpected detail to an outfit with it’s ruffle and puff sleeves! I see it with or without a fun necklace or earrings and just overall a versatile, quality top. I had to talk myself into after the poll thought it was so meh… but I’m going to trust my fashion gut here and I think you guys are going to love what I’m going to do with it! Look for it as a fun #OOTD post!

5. Modern Skinny Crop Jeans $34.99-69.50
Wearing a 10 Petite

Even though these were noted as being a crop, they still came to my ankle more like a traditional cigarette pant on me. Loved the fit on these and the stretch was comfortable, they felt lightweight and super soft! These come in many colors but of course I was more drawn to the neutral grey. The crops also come in an olive. Again I didn’t buy any bottoms yesterday because I was focused on tops, BUT I will probably be coming back for these babies! They also passed the bendy test!

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6. Mosaic Stripe Bell Sleeve Blouse $59.50 and additional 40% OFF!
Wearing a Medium Petite

I loved the almost nautical vibe of this top, probably because of the beautiful blues! It was super soft and has a high neck / split neck detail which I love! I’m a huge fan of anything high neck! The embroidery here was awesome and I’m actually usually not a fan in most tops because it comes with this scratchy interior material protecting the embroidery. This one did NOT.

I ended up not getting this one because I just felt that it didn’t show off my weight loss like I’m looking for right now. But I know that if I did, I could style it with a cute pair of white crops or even shorts and just slightly tuck in the front to make it look more fitted! Ahh… :adds to cart:… I should have just bought it yesterday! HA! Love this one!
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7. Ruffled Cold Shoulder Tee $39.50 and an additional 40% OFF!
Wearing a Medium Petite

THIS TOP IS EVERYTHING. I actually changed into this after popping into another store, I loved it that much. It’s rayon/poly/spandex blend which is my favorite in a tee and the weight of it makes it SO flattering too. I think the cold shoulder is a fun flirty way to spice up your average tee! I’m also a huge fan of ruffles so this one was a done deal from the moment I looked in the mirror!

Again this one would also be good as a tucked in tee because of the tailored shape. It’s not too form fitting though, just perfect! Comes in this navy and also a lighter brighter blue! You’ll see me in this one A LOT! Fair warning! LOL!

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8. Wildflower Pleated Mixed Media Shell $44.50 and an additional 40% OFF!
Wearing a Medium Petite in this one too!

Y’all!! This top has some serious versatility, gorgeous color and a soft, sexy feel! Loved the high, split neck! The pattern is chic and classic, not crazy! And with endless outfit possibilities you could dress it up or down. I mean here I just tossed it on with my jeans and could have left it on all day… It wasn’t so sheer either that it required a tank underneath even though it’s white! SCORE!

Perfect spring/summer top! Also this print comes in a long sleeve, bell cuff version HERE!

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9. Flutter Belted Flare Dress $89.50
Wearing a 10 Petite in this one!

I tried on this dress a week ago and HATED it… because I didn’t try on the petite (was in a store with a tiny petite section)! But I did see it’s potential and had it in the back of my mind as I was headed into the store yesterday! So glad I gave it a second chance because it’s a stunning variation of the LBD!

The belted waist enhances the hourglass shape of the dress and is just so flattering! I loved the length so much better on the petite as it hit me above the knee giving the illusion that my legs are longer… they’re NOT long at all LOL. The flouncy ruffle detail around the arms and the hemline is gorgeous too!

I know the price tag is a little steeper, but if you signup for their mailing list you do get a $25 for insider coupon… this dress is worth it. Fully lined, quality material and packed with all the sass and sex appeal you need to turn up the volume on date night!

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LOVED these pieces so much and I always love what Loft has on the racks. They have an overall classic style that can be everyday or wear to work, so versatile. Their clothes are always quality and last for YEARS if you’d like them to.

Let me know what you snag during this AWESOME sale!

Comment below with another store you’d like to see hauls from… where are we off to next?!

Xo,

Kate

Runway Review

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It’s no secret that I’m completely obsessed with THIS and the ability for me to get my hands on quality, high fashion pieces constantly throughout the month. Just this month already I’ve kept a tally and I’ve enjoyed the most gorgeous pieces, numerous outfit possibilities and gorgeous quality accessories that would have cost me….. $4,812 to buy.

The pieces I want to focus on today are the Trina Turk Denim Jamille Dress and the A.L.C Ari Top that I’ve ordered most recently… it’s almost 80°F today and all I can think about is being outside in the sunshine! So perfect for BOTH pieces here… you’ll see why!

 

 

the ‘haul’

IMG_3711First the Trina Turk Jamille Dress is a fantastic weight for the fabric. Usually when dresses are made out of a denim or a chambray I get frustrated with the wrinkles or the way they fall. This one however is the perfect blend of structure and quality. It’s also completely soft and not the slightest bit stiff or scratchy which also can be common with denim dresses. It’s made of Crosshatch Denim // 70% Tencel, 30% Linen.

Details is where it shines, we have double breast pockets and a button up collar that is flattering either way. The button up collar does sit low if you’re rocking a short torso like me, so it’s not going to be ideal if you are planning to wear with a belt accessory. It features two deep pockets on either hip that lay flat and you wont even know they are there from the front… they do not pucker or bunch. The pocket adds a casual detail that I love, almost farmer chic. Totally my style.

The length was flattering and even though I ideally would have purchased this dress in a petite size, it didn’t fall below my knee. Since I’m short (5’1”), I prefer to elongate my body by showing off a little leg. Keeping a dress hem above the knee, even just slightly, makes me appear taller and slimmer instead of cutting my body off. There’s always an exception to every rule in fashion… but I usually tend to stick to this one for sure.

Overall the dress was a WIN… I loved it and it would be perfect for just about anything that I see myself getting into this Spring. It’s versatile and super cute. If you’d like to check this baby out yourself, get started HERE or shop it retail for $228.

IMG_3709This A.L.C Top is made of the softest silk and I love the way it feels. So light and with a great silhouette, the printed silk features the most beautiful little flowers. So SPRING. I usually do not go for the tops with a ruffle around the bust because they create a more voluptuous illusion, but like I’ve said before I’m not going to NOT get something I love. I was pleasantly surprised that it has adjustable straps that were a little wider, more quality straps instead of the usual. This really was a super comfortable top and felt light as a feather to the point that I almost felt like I wasn’t wearing anything at all. This would be the perfect top for a summer concert, festival or something where you wanted to stay cool and maybe get a little sun!

It comes with a pricey tag though, at $275 it would be out of my reach for a spaghetti strap tank top. I can attest to the quality of the fabrics and the design of the overall top, it is however out of my price range for this type of piece. So yes, I’ll be snagging it again for a routine delivery. Being silk it’s also something that you’ll want to make sure that you have dry cleaned ONLY. No matter what, this flirty feminine top will remain in my back pocket ready to go on date night!

I loved this haul from RTR! Thanks to my stylist who always is helpful in answering my questions and getting back to me as quick as she can to help me make the best decisions for each and every look.

Let me know what you think about this look and if you decide to start taking advantage of this amazing program! Remember in times like these, a few staple pieces or outfits for special occasions can allow you to get by until you’re at a comfortable weight or back into your normal clothing! They even have maternity options! Where was this when I was pregnant!!?

Enjoy $30 off when you use THIS link! Hey, I get $30 too! Win/Win!! #teamwork

Xo,

Kate