what’s in her bag

for those who don’t already know, i am a total beauty junkie and am constantly trying new products. one of my favorite things to do on trips or when visiting my friends is to raid their cosmetics bags and medicine cabinets. i know, i sound like such a great house guest!

luckily, they are usually more than happy to share, showing off their favorites and having me play guinea pig — hence the inspiration for this new type of post. meet “what’s in her bag,” borrowed from what used to be the title of my favorite page in US weekly. in lieu of a celebrity’s purse contents, i’m going to highlight new beauty & makeup picks according to some of my besties. today i’m kicking it off fresh from a trip to beantown, where KSR shared with me her love of all things Goop, plus a few other primo choices from Oribe, GlamGlow, and Marc Jacobs beauty…

ahhhh the money shot…. honey i’m home! 

1body butter  2rose mist  3loose powder  4concealer

5face oil  6moisturizer  7jelly cleanser  8instant facial

9cosmetic bag  10concealer brush  11bronzer  12bronzer brush

my unfiltered reviews & product superlatives…

Goop– best all around. for the entire length of my stay (thanks very generous friend!) I used the full Goop skincare line– including the instant facial, day and night moisturizers, eye cream and face oil. i had heard so much hype about all of Gwennie’s products, but i can honestly say they lived up to it and then some. my skin’s texture was visibly improved in just three days– more even, supple, brighter, and moisturized. i know these products are pricey, but to me there was a noticeable difference in quality versus even other high end brands like la mer and jo malone. it also doesn’t hurt that the packaging is gorgissimo– all of the jars are nice and weighty ceramic– and the products are minimally scented with a light citrus scent.

if i can pick a top item from the set that i won’t be able to live without, it would either be the instant facial or the night cream. the instant facial is potent, so use sparingly to start. it’s a two minute mask you put on 2-3x a week, and contains exfoliating enzymes and natural acids; it sloughed away some of the blemishes and most of the dead skin on my face, leaving me feeling a little raw at first, but after following it with the face oil and intensive night cream, the next day i woke up feeling soft as a baby, and the remaining spots on my face cleared up within a day or two. the night cream is also a winner. with sensitive skin like mine, i will do just about anything for deep moisture. this one is heavy without feeling greasy and soaks in quickly.

there wasn’t a “loser” of the group, but if i have any complaints it’s that the day moisturizer, which looks like a pump, has to be pulled out on a stick. i think is mostly just annoying design because it’s hard to get the right amount of product out. for those interested in dipping a toe into the Goop world, the discovery set is a great way to get travel sized minis of everything (except the eye cream) before you commit. all in, i am a complete goop beauty convert, and can’t wait to try the melting cleanser, lip balm and GP’s favorite natural deodorant next.

Marc Jacobs bronzer & brush— cutest couple. i don’t know why I’ve never considered buying marc jacobs makeup (maybe because it launched in the past couple of years, so i assumed it was sort of a fad?) thank god my friend was more of a risk taker, because i could not be more obsessed. this bronzer is so natural looking, it gives the perfect flush. the palette is slightly giant in size, so not the most purse/travel friendly, but you know it will give bang for your buck. plus the brush is possibly the softest, fluffiest creation ever. put together, the two feel incredibly luxe and celebrity worthy.

Glamglow jelly cleanser— most reliable. don’t be freaked out that this gentle facewash comes out black as night, like something in an episode of stranger things. it’s just another odd yet effective miracle worker by glamglow (the brand that also makes my favorite under eye masks). i don’t know how this company comes up with its products or convinces people to use them– the eye mask i love is bright yellow with floating seaweed chunks in it and i still voluntarily put it all over my face– but whatever ingredients they use really, really work. this one turns into a milky white lather and took off every stitch of makeup without leaving my skin feeling stripped.

Nars concealer— most likely to succeed. as i mentioned above, the weekend i rolled into town my skin was acting up with some serious breakouts. i had an important work interview and a date, so i needed full coverage concealer and fast. this creamy formula, which i put on per recommendation with the bobbi brown brush, saved the day on the zits while also erasing all evidence of under eye bags and tiredness; win/win in my book.

Supergoop body butter most popular. shame on me since one of my dear friends in NY runs marketing for them (sorry IDC!) but i was under the impression that super goop was sunscreen only. that is in fact #fakenews, and their body butter is pretty incredible. it’s the perfect fresh-out-of-the-shower lotion, and not too precious for every day use. i will definitely be stocking up on a bottle this winter when dry skin sets in.

Oribe purple shampoo— biggest flirt. given that i’m not a blonde (natural or otherwise), the purple shampoo trend hasn’t really been on my radar, but a recent keratin left my highlights looking a little brassy so i decided to give this a whirl. I found it toned this down slightly after just one use, and would probably have been more effective after a couple of continuous uses. even if the purple tint does absolutely nothing for you, this shampoo left my hair smelling amazing for days.

Nars finishing powder and rose spray— hardest working. i’ve always been a big believer in setting your makeup with translucent powder to make it last for the whole day, but lately my cheap drug store option has failed me and been showing up white. this is clearly problematic since i am ghostly enough as is. i’m glad i got to take this nars alternative out for a lengthy test drive because it worked like a champ. just a light dusting over your face, followed by a refreshing spritz of the rose spray, and my makeup was still in tact when i got home (post margs) 16 hours later.

beauty bloggers or booze enthusiasts? both.

thank you to my dear friend for letting me go ham with an amazing assortment of beauty products, and to my other friends, just wait, your vanity is next! want more before then? check out some of my other beauty product reviews here and here.

summer in the city

while most people (at least life according to Instagram) are currently headed to various summer vacations, beach getaways and tropical destinations, this working girl is sticking to the mean streets of nyc, at least Monday-Friday.

leave it to one of my favorite fashion blogs, le catch, to have me clamoring for the perfect new summer office staple — a linen blazer. as with anything featured on le catch, most items go quickly, so I was happy to snap up the j.crew style below before it sold out (hopefully it will be restocked soon).

a lightweight linen style can be thrown over a shift dress for days you don’t feel like getting dressed (ie after too many margs at happy hour the night prior), or it can do double duty over a t-shirt on chilly weekend evenings. but since the temperature in my building is set on arctic, I can’t wait to wear mine with some crisp white loafers, a knit shell, and basic work pants. of course, oversized black shades are also necessary for warding off the summer glare on Park Avenue– perfect for stating “I might be relegated to a concrete jungle, but I’m on vacation in my mind!”

links to items above (left to right)

sunglassesle specs, saint laurent, krewe, tom ford

blazersrebecca vallance, lafayette 148, j.crewbanana republic

(plus more blazer options by h&m, white house black market, mango, and zara)

pants– rag & bonetibinanette leporej.crew

loaferssteve maddenjoie, freda salvadorgucci

the shape of water

YALL. has everyone seen the shape of water? i watched it on a plane home from SF last night and cannot get over it– the depth of character development, the unusual story line, the gorgeous cinematography, the attention to each and every tiny detail weaving in and out throughout the film…. talk about a work of art.

while obviously this film was very hyped at the oscars, i had put off seeing it because a) pan’s labyrinth scared the ever living s&*t out of me, which was the last big film by this director, and b) i have an extremely hard time sitting still for an entire movie, so i figured i needed to watch it at a time when i was feeling ready to focus, in order give it a fair chance. maybe it was being trapped on an airplane, but i was completely captivated. and don’t get me started on the ending– i won’t give away any spoilers, but text or email me to please discuss, because i am OVERWHELMED (can you ever just be “whelmed”?) and need someone to talk to about it. so there’s that.

the second mind blowing discovery of the day? lychee ice cream. THANK YOU JET BLUE. i have found a new non-sartorial obsession in this stuff. it’s light, creamy, not too sweet and completely worth the lactose-induced belly ache. do any readers know where i can procure such a delicacy at sea level?

in homage to my new favorite feature film, and in the effort of keeping this a fashion blog, a few items worthy of a modern day mermaid…

 

listed from top to bottom:

headwrap,  slip dresscrochet top,  sheer skirt,  capri perfumeruffled top,

  sunglassestrousersclutch,  fish earrings,  surf sprayslides (if mermaids had feet),

one piece swimsuit, pearl bracelet,  striped skirtcolor block dress,

  mixed stone earrings,  raffia tote bag, wrap sandalsbikinilight blue fragrance,

  mother of pearl ringbone earrings

 

 

max for the minimum

my friends and family know (and often laugh over) how much i love hunting for a good bargain– growing up in a small town, I could usually find more designer brands available at our local TJmaxx or at small consignment stores than at any high end store we had at the mall. i absolutely love the thrill of finding something unexpected at a great price, and even now with a plethora of shopping options at my doorstep, i still peruse TJ, H&M, forever21, eBay, etsy and thrift stores like Housing Works on the reg (last weekend over Easter I scored a Chanel-esque pair of woven slingbacks for $18).

so you can imagine just how happy I was to find this wedding guest-friendly dress, which is very reminiscent of a mixed print DVF one, at a very un-black tie price ($100)! wear it with sleek metallic accessories and a dark pout for a look that’s guaranteed to give the max for the minimum.

wear it with…

1– topshop maxi dress, $100

2– bajra silk shawl, $290 (20% off with code FF2018)

3– kenneth jay lane faux pearl drops, $60

4– schutz metallic sandals, $190

5– proenza schouler arizona scent, $100

6– chloe mini pixie bag, $990

 

and since i’ve gotten numerous requests for other spring event dresses, check out other floral picks by saloni, asos, rebecca taylor, vince camuto, alice & oliviatanya taylor, and reformation.