The Foolproof Ombré Mani


I have tried countless times to do the infamous ombré manicure and have failed horribly. Until today. After reading so many tutorials on using a damp makeup sponge, and layering color upon color at once, I figured something wasn’t right: the moisture level!

Here’s what you’ll need: a clear coat, 3 nail polish colors and one makeup sponge.

1) Start with your base cost. After it dries, choose one of three colors and paint both hands. LET IT DRY COMPLETELY!

2) After, choose your second color and paint a small section of one side of your DRY makeup sponge. Dab the sponge halfway down each of your nails. It’s okay if it’s a little messy.

3) Repeat step 2 with your third color, dabbing onto the tip of your nails. Let the colors set.

4) Now step 4 is very important because it will blend your ombré manicure. If you did steps 1-3 correctly, your nails will look like very bright, blunt stripes. Take your makeup sponge and rip it in half, creating a textured edge! Simply repeat steps 2 and 3 but using the bumpy, textured side of the sponge. This should make your mani look like a continuous gradient.

5) Finish it off with a clear top coat, and make sure to leave plenty of dry time!


“Reboot” your Wardrobe


We all have old or bland items in our wardrobes that could use a little something more. Well, after I found these boots while on vacation in Key West for only $10, I knew I could easily personalize and update them! I made a quick trip to Joann Fabrics and headed toward the trim aisle. I then found 2 different fringe trims and black studs that I was instantly drawn to. After coupons the trims came to about $3! I used a combo of fabric glue and super glue I already had and attached the fringe and studs. I liked the boots before, but after I “rebooted” them, I LOVED them! So next time you clean out your closet, consider personalizing some “oldies but goodies” before tossing them, you’d be surprised what inspiration can come from the craft store!

Animal Instinct




Typically, I stay away from animal prints when putting together outfits because it can easily go from trendy to tacky. However, there are ways to make cheetah and leopard prints work without going overboard. The secret? Choosing the correct article of clothing!

Think about it, something tight and skin baring will only send the wrong message. Avoid bright colored printed leggings and jeans. Instead look for pieces that are playful, loose and somewhat modest. Also, sheer fabrics work well with cheetah and leopard because they mute the intensity of the print (just be sure to wear something underneath of course). Pair animal prints with neutral or pastel shades for an instant look that’s chic and classy. Above, I paired the sheer blouse with gold accessories, black boots, and nude shorts for a trendier look while I paired the faux chiffon skirt with a cream sweater and wedge sneakers that were all in the same color palette to achieve a monochromatic look.

If you don’t have any pieces like this in your closet, start off gradually by incorporating animal print accessories into your outfits. Printed flats can transform any plain outfit into something new, same with an animal print bag or scarf! Just follow your animal instinct!

Beauty: The Perfect Bun



Whenever I’m short on time, my signature go-to hairdo is the topknot. It’s super chic, quick, and great for those days your hair is less than fresh!
Over the years, I’ve leaned new ways to perfect the ‘do and now I’m going to share them with you!

First lets start with the basics. If your hair isn’t first day fresh, grab some powder to soak up any greasiness. Baby powder, scented body powder, whatever you have! Simply pour a small amount on the crown of your head and pat it through to the roots. Next, brush your hair back until all the whiteness from the powder is absorbed and pull into a ponytail. Now, choose 1 of 3 ways to achieve bun perfection:

The first way is quickest, and requires only 2 small hair clips. Tease your ponytail and divide into 2 pieces. Take one piece and wrap it around the base of your ponytail and secure with a clip. Take the second piece and do the same but in the OPPOSITE direction around the base and clip. Hairspray any fly-always and you’re good to go!

The second way requires either a bun insert (like the small one above, available at Claire’s for $5) or use a rolled sock (check out the sockbun vids
on YouTube). Take your ponytail and pull it through the center of the bun insert of your choice, so it’s sitting at the base of your pony. Now, take the insert and pull it up the ponytail until only about 2 inches of your ends are hanging out. Then, tuck the ends over the insert and begin to roll the insert down toward the base of the ponytail. It’s much easier if you use your thumbs to push the hair up into the insert rather than try to use the tips of your fingers to pull from the top. After practice, you’ll have a perfectly tight ballerina bun!

The last way is my personal favorite! You’ll need the largest bun insert (Mine above was $5.25 from Claire’s) and 3-5 bobby pins. First pull the ponytail through the insert, so it is sitting at the base of the pony against your head. Divide the pony into two pieces and make sure both pieces are voluminous. Slightly twist one piece and wrap it around the bun making sure to hide the insert and bobby pin the ends under the insert. Do the same with the second piece but wrap in the OPPOSITE direction to hide the other side of the insert! And voila, the biggest and best topknot in under 5 minutes!

Haute Halloween: Costume ideas for girls, guys, couples & friends!

Every year around the time the trees start to change color we are all faced with an epic question: “What will I be for Halloween?!” Maybe a witch? Or a ghost? Maybe just throw a scary mask and cape on? Nope, not this year! Why not be something unique, fun, and not to mention haute, all without emptying your wallet? Well, here is your guide to having a Happy Haute Halloween costume this October whether you go out solo, with your significant other, or even your closest friends! (All Polyvore’s made by yours truly)!

Just for Girls:

Broken Doll: If you’re looking to be something spooky this year, what’s creepier than a porcelain doll? How about a broken, twisted, deathly one?! Think Kerli from her music video “walking on air.” Simply wear a dress or skirt, and add a tutu underneath it. Wear a corset, bustier, or a frilly lace blouse over the dress (or with your skirt) and add funky accessories! For example, I recommend a cute headpiece like a mini top hat or enormous bow (check out Claire’s). Add striped or fishnet tights with huge platform heels like Jeffrey Campbell Lita Booties (you can find knockoffs at Charlotte Russe). You can even carry something spooky like a teddy bear with a missing eye or arm. As for hair and makeup, choose something doll-like: big pigtails, teased braids, thick false eyelashes, and exaggerated pink cheeks. Add a shock factor by using pale powder on exposed skin, black lipstick, drawing on fake scars, or even doing mismatched eye makeup! You’ll be sure to get attention wherever you go!

Big Bad Wolf: Sexiness is always a popular deciding factor when looking for costume ideas amongst girls. A simple costume idea using some basic clothing pieces is a sexy wolf. All you need is a fur vest! Wear it closed with a push up bra and some liquid leggings (or even leopard leggings if your closet is limited), slip on some stiletto heels and top it off with ears and a teased ponytail and you’re good to go! You can take it to the next level with fur leg warmers, false fangs, fake blood and red lipstick. Boys will be begging you to huff and puff and blow their house down!

Fashion Addict: Here’s a fun and simple costume for any fashionista! All you need is your own clothes, plus a Starbucks cup and optional Vogue magazine! Start by going through your closet and picking out anything extremely fashion forward or uber trendy. Then, layer it all together. The more layers, the more Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen-esque. For example, wear multiple necklaces (the sparklier the better), lace socks with open toed heels, rings on every finger, or a sequin tank under a cardigan, under a fur vest. Go all out! Then carry around a Vogue magazine, your iPhone and a Starbucks cup (which you can fill with your drink of choice if you’re of legal age)! Finish it off with red lipstick and top knot and you’ll be looking like Rachel Zoe in no time.

Chic Sushi: If you want to be some super unique and quirky, look no further! Being sushi for Halloween is much easier than it seems. Wear a white dress (or white shirt with bottoms of your choice) and attach a small pink or orange pillow to your back using a thick elastic black belt or ribbon tied around your waist. Then, glue one large green pom pom and one large pink pom pom to a headband to act as wasabi and ginger (use ribbon or bows if you cannot find pom poms) or even take it a step further by adding a bun and chopsticks to your look. Voila, a sushi costume good enough to eat!

Katniss: Celebrity costumes are always a popular choice year after year. This October, channel your inner heroine and dress as the infamous Katniss Everdeen from the Hunger Games. You’ll need: cargo pants, combat boots, a windbreaker, an optional backpack, and bow and arrow (which you can easily find at your local dollar store). Give yourself a simple side braid, conservative makeup, and pin on your prized golden Mockingjay pin (obtainable at party stores, Hot Topic, and even Icing, aka Claire’s Accessories stores). Now you can make your grand entrance by walking into the party shouting “I volunteer! I volunteer as tribute!”

More Ideas: Mother Nature, Glam Ghoul, Peacock, Harajuku Girl, Bambi, Dark Raven.

Just for Guys:

Slenderman: For guys, dressing scary means wearing a mask and splashing on some fake blood. Well, this Halloween creep out the party by dressing as Slenderman. This costume can be even scarier if you’re tall and skinny. Wear a suit coat and dress pants (or tux if you have your own) with a skinny black tie and white gloves. Wear a white mask or even make your own faceless mask by cutting off one leg to women’s white, sheer tights, making a small knot on one end and slipping it over your head! (PartyCity also sells a $55 tux “morph suit” that looks surprisingly realistic if you’re running low on time)!

Where’s Waldo: Here’s a very fun and effortless costume that’s sure to be the center of attention. You’ll need a red and white striped shirt, a pair of jeans, a red or white beanie and “Harry Potter” glasses (or any other glasses will do). That’s it, there’s nothing else to it! And want to know the best part? Photobombing! Jump into the background of every possible picture and when it comes time to uploading them to Facebook, name the album “Where’s Waldo.”

Classy Hobo/Like a Sir: If you’re a guy looking to save money this Halloween, look no further than your dresser. Here’s a fun and “tasteful” costume idea that will get you lots of laughs. Simply throw on 1) a blazer and dress pants, 2) jeans and an old raggedy t-shirt/plaid button down, or get the best of both worlds with 3) the tuxedo t-shirt! Using your mom’s or girlfriend’s eyeliner pencil, draw on a mustache and faux monocle. Wear a top hat and then talk all night with a snooty accent and sip your drink pinky-up.

Instagram: No app has gained more popularity than Instagram. If you’re a photo major or just plain quirky and creative, this is the costume for you. Start off with a trip to your local craft store. Purchase sheets of felt (or even ribbon) in red, yellow, green, blue and black. Also grab a half yard of brown ribbon and white fabric paint. Then stop at the Salvation Army and pick up an old record. Using a brown t-shirt and sharpie, draw a horizontal line across the chest, armpit to armpit. Then, cut out a square from the black felt and glue it to the right side of the shirt, above the sharpie line. On the left side, create a “rainbow” by cutting out strips of the colored felt and gluing it from the sharpie line to the shoulder seam. Write “insta” under the rainbow in the white fabric paint. Then, hot glue both ends of the ribbon to the record and make a “necklace” out of it to act as the lens. Wear khaki pants, and then Instagram yourself Halloween night!

Psy, aka Gangnam Style: Korean rapper, Psy, has made quite the impact in the media lately with his hilarious dance moves from his latest music video “Gangnam Style.” His outfit in the music video consists of a blue blazer, dress pants, bowtie and sunglasses. Simple enough right? Well, if you really want to make an appearance this Halloween, you need to learn the Gangnam Style dance moves! You’ll be flash mobbing everywhere this October 31st!

More Ideas: Full Body Cast, Magic Mike, Creep, Father Time, Gingerbread, Gameboy, iPhone.

Just for Couples:

Princess Bubblegum and Finn: This cute couple from Cartoon Network’s Adventure Time will make the coolest couple costume ever! For Princess Bubblegum, you can easily wear a pink dress, pink wig, and gold headband or ribbon around your head! For Finn, you just need jeans, a blue t-shirt, backpack and white beanie. Glue two cotton balls on either side of the beanie to create Finn’s look, or you can even buy a Finn hat from Hot Topic stores! Guys can take the costume even further by carrying around a sword or blue Game Boy to act as Beemo from the show! And if you’re a true Adventure Time fan, Beemo iPhone cases are easy to find online!

Daisy Buchanan and Jay Gatsby: Nothing can be more haute than the Great Gatsby, and with the new remake hitting theaters soon, you and your significant other can be the most glamorous couple at any Halloween bash. For Daisy, simple wear any pastel dress, or shirt/skirt combo with fringe. If you don’t own anything of the sort, check out any vintage or thrift stores for flapper-inspired dresses. Wear a feather boa, an oversized floppy hat or feathered headband, and a long pearl necklace to finish of the look. As for hair and makeup, go with a smoky eye and wine stained lips, paired with soft waves. For Gatsby, try your best to wear all white or khaki. If that is not possible, any suit or blazer with dress pants will work great or even a vest with a button down and tie! Top off Gatsby’s look with slicked, polished hair, a newsboy cap, and suspenders!

More Ideas: Carrie and Big, Helga and Hey Arnold, Jack and Sally, Kate and Prince William.

Just for Friends:

Kardashian Sisters: If you and your girls are looking for a simple and sexy costume that will get you noticed, look no further than E! TV. In every girl’s wardrobe lies the body-con skirt. Pair this with any plunging neckline top, your highest heels, thick false eyelashes and long straight hair. You can even carry around a baby doll if you’re Kourtney! This group costume works best for 3 girls, but you can always take it a step further by adding Kris Jenner, Kendall and Kylie. Talk in your best Kardashian accents all night to really polish off your looks.

One Direction: Hey guys, if you want the girls to be all over you this Halloween, you MUST dress as teen heartthrobs, One Direction. Wear slim or skinny jeans (colored or white denim is best), trendy t-shirts, and high top sneakers. Style your hair and throw on a scarf, vest, or zip-up to really make it look legit. Carry around microphones and sing or talk in British accents all night!

More Ideas: The Wiggles, Men in Black, The Expendables, A [dead] Wedding Party, The Breakfast Club, Disney [Hipster] Princesses, The Duggars, Olympic Team, Zompires, Sexy Sirens.

Accessory Underdog: the iPhone case

Accessories are everything when it comes to putting together an outfit. Jewelry, shoes, purses etc. However, there’s one accessory that’s constantly in your hands and yet always overlooked; your phone. Smartphones and iPhones have become an everyday accessory in every women’s life, so why not make it just as fashionable?! Here are a few of my favorite phone cases I’ve gone through within the past year, and each one has definitely gotten people’s attention!

Above: Brass knuckle iPhone case. $13 Ebay.

Above: Skull Pleather iPhone case. $12 Icing/Claire’s Accessories.

Above: Kawaii Bunny iPhone case. $7 Ebay.

Above: Gold Stud DIY iPhone case. 2$ Via the Dollar Tree and Joann Fabrics.

Above: Kawaii Rilakkuma Bling iPhone case. $13 Charlotte Russe.