Kylie Lip Kit 

Hey there loves! It’s been a while since I’ve come on here to talk about a new product, that is until now! I ordered one of the Kylie Lip Kits a few weeks ago, gave it a test run and am now ready to share my thoughts. Well here goes…

I purchased the shade 22 which is a gorgeous brunt orangey-red. The formula is very pigmented, has a creamy consistency and dries quickly (which doesn’t give you much room for error). The kit also includes a lip liner which helps perfect the edges of your lips and provide an adhesive base for the liquid lipstick.

The lipstick wore well for the first 4 hours but I noticed a little bit of flaking in the center of my lips towards the last hour. I then went on to eat and drink checked back on how it looked and most of the color in the center was gone. Reapplying isn’t a deal breaker for me, as long as the product doesn’t look too cakey afterward (which it didn’t).

Pros: Color pay off, creamy texture & comfortable to wear.

Cons: Flaking, Price tag ($29 for .11 oz / 3.25 mil)

Although I would recommend the liquid lipstick (if you’re willing to hash out $29 for it) I wouldn’t necessarily purchase another one.

Here’s the link to 22 which is still available for purchase: 22 Lip Kit

Till next time,

Gwen, xx

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Storage Unit DIY

I know I teased this on Instagram a long time ago but the time has finally come to reveal my awesome DIY storage project for my room. I was on a bit of a décor kick as of recent and wanted to bring my interior style game up a notch now that I’m getting older. One way to do that was introducing mixed metals to my new mirrored furniture and find ways to incorporate natural elements like wood to make it cozier. A full room tour might be necessary in the near future! For now here is how I jazzed up this ordinary shelving unit to be perfect for my aesthetic.

Things you will need- Everything can be purchased from Walmart.com

  • Storage Unit
  • Gold Spray Paint
  • Screwdriver or Drill (I only used a screwdriver)
  • Marble Contact Paper (or any pattern contact paper for that matter)
  • Pencil, Ruler and Scissors (or scrap booking knife)
  1. Prepare your work space with enough room, you will only need a screwdriver or drill (if you’re fancy)
  2. Follow the directions to screw each shelf to the columns (starting from the bottom helps)
  3. After its constructed take it to an outside open area and spray with gold paint, let dry and do a second coat
  4. Measure and cut pieces of contact paper with the pencil and ruler (make sure to write on the back portion of the paper not the visible marble part)
  5. Cut out the pieces and smooth them over the shelves with the ruler or a rag to smooth out any air bubbles
  6. Embellish shelves with books or home décor items, get creative!

I had originally planned on leaving the bottom shelf open for a hamper or larger items but later decided to add the missing shelf for a more cohesive look. I also plan on eventually getting some pull out mesh drawers from IKEA and de clutter it. For now I love the finished product and can’t wait to play around with the items and change them up for the seasons!

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XOXO- Ari

Flower Power 

Two weekends ago I was in Brooklyn celebrating a birthday when I stumbled upon some amazing murals along the sidewalk. It’s such a rare occasion when I am able to take outfit photos that I of course jumped at the opportunity and made my friends take some of me on their cell phones.

(Disclaimer: Hence why they aren’t the best quality, but I thought why not share).

Not sure if living in London for part of last year had some influence in my style but as of lately I’ve been very much into dark colors, (Shocking right!). When I saw this dress it immediately caught my eye because it has dark undertones but what really stood out was the pop of orange. The dress is from H&M and I purchased it back in the Fall for $14.95! Side note: I am loving the fact that H&M now carries more of their clothing items in a size xl. Unfortunately it is no longer available but, there’s a similar sleeveless style at the moment in stores. 

Now on to the boots! These white block heeled boots are one of my favorite purchases I’ve made in a while. I saw them on the Aldo website and proceeded to hunt them down in store. They are sort of an off white/beige shade with a chunky black and silver heel. They can easily be worn with jeans, dresses, skirts, shorts, you name it! Once again they are not available but I did tag the clear heeled missguided boots my sister wore in a previous post.

H&M Dress
Missguided Boots
Ray-Ban Aviators

Hope you all enjoyed this quick ootd. Ari and I will be traveling together soon, which means I’ll make her take loads of photos of me! 

Till next time, 

xx, Gwen 

Utility Jumpsuit

Utilitarian is the perfect word to describe this amazing jumpsuit from Forever 21. Compared to a classic anorak jacket or trench, this color and fabric can be paired with almost anything and will look amazing! Featuring a long sleeve, button front, collar and slanted front pockets it is 100% cotton and impeccable quality. I paired mine alone with classic nude sandals and my everyday Kate Spade bag to really make the outfit the focal point. You can roll up the sleeves as I did and even the pant legs to go with some combat boots or flats. This is a great transitional piece (especially here for Florida) as the nights get a little cooler for the fall. I can see this paired with a long duster coat, or even a denim or plaid accent tied around the waist. I consider this an investment piece seeing as it can be worn all year round, it is great material and it’s in a neutral color. At only $40.00 it’s a steal from Forever 21! Links down below.
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Contemporary Life in Progress Utility Jumpsuit
Similar Sandals

XOXO, ARI

How to: Forever 21 OOTD

As a graduate student and full time employed 26 year old, I have come here to share with everyone that it’s possible to look put together in a hurry! I am free mostly the weekends and this is a time for me to catch up with loved ones, go out to some of my favorite restaurants and shop of course! I have read up on some great techniques and tips for throwing together a last minute outfit but these are some of the tried and true methods that work personally for me when I finally get a moment to enjoy myself.

  1. Layer- layering always makes the outfit more intricate and seems like you’ve put more effort than you actually did. This olive trench style jacket is perfect to throw over literally anything for an instant cool girl vibe.
  2. One trend- Find one thing that sticks out as “new” or “fresh” or even eye catching. Pieces like these can be conversation starters and ways for you to stand out from the crowd. I went with this denim button up style skirt that everyone is rocking these days.
  3. Basics with a twist- I used an oversized white t-shirt and tied it up in the front for a more feminine feel.
  4. Staple classic items- These black mule sandals are perfect for the Florida weather and are so comfortable and chic with the gold detailing. Funny enough, these are shoes I would see my mom wear and used to think they were “old lady style” funny how things change and now I love them! My Kate Spade purse is also a staple classic item that I wear with everything for a sophisticated touch.
  5. Pop of color- Lastly a pop of color isn’t necessary but always fun; I played around with a bright red lip and loved the finished look!

You can play around with different textures, colors and patterns on the “off” days to make up for the drab work wear worn during the week. Links below to items!

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Toodles, Ari

Forever 21 Denim Skirt

Forever 21 Mule Sandals

Similar Jacket

Colourpop Ultra Matte 

Liquid lipsticks are all the rave at the moment, which means I had to test some of these bad boys out for myself. Loads of makeup brands have launched their own versions of these long wearing formulas including the fairly new brand Colourpop. Known for their fun notes and holographic packaging, Colourpop has delivered some great products thus far, including the ultra matte lipsticks. Here’s my honest opinion (based on the two shades I purchased).

Pros: very pigmented, about 4-5 hour wear, great price ($6)

Cons: dries very quickly, can flake a bit

Now let me elaborate on my cons. The texture/formulation is really thin and liquidy, which is why I feel that they dry quickly, you don’t have much time to work with the product once applied on the lips. Now on to flaking, this happened to me because I made a mistake applying it the first time, figured I could just add another layer but after it dried it began to flake off a bit. Basically you have to be quick and precise with these. I will also say that as many other liquid lipstick formulas these are drying but it’s nothing a little lip balm underneath can’t fix.

    Chocolate brown on top is Limbo, Mauve/Rosey on the bottom is Tulle.

Limbo

 Tulle

Overall I feel that for the low price of $6 these are a really good buy. I’ve tried some higher end ones that feel the same way so why not save a few dollars, right?

Hope these swatches were of help for those wanting to purchase any of these shades. Which are you favorite liquid lipsticks? Leave comments and suggestions down below.

xx, Gwen

Forever 21-Platform Sandals OOTD

As some may have noticed for a period of time I deviated from one of my all-time favorite stores, Forever 21 for a while. I think once I turned 26 I felt as though some of the items weren’t age appropriate and let’s face it, sometimes shopping in store can be daunting. So many racks upon racks of items to sift through can be exhausting and a challenge to say the least. The other night I was online “window shopping” when I came across so many great new items at forever21.com. Priced slightly higher, it seems as though they are taking a turn towards more quality pieces that can transition easier than previous lines. I found myself throwing stuff in my cart and being really inspired by what I was getting. One of the standout items being these amazing lug-sole platform sandals. This chunky heel is designed with faux leather construction and buckle detailing perfect for any occasion. They are described as “dark grey” on the website but have some undertones that make it look olive/taupe color in certain lighting. They are the perfect neutrals that I can see myself pairing with so many things, not to mention comfortable! The sunnies are also forever 21, jacket from GAP and dress is from Primark. Links to items can be found below. Cheers to rediscovering a classic staple store!
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Forever 21 Lug-Sole Platform Sandals
Round Sunglasses
XOXO, ARI

Influenster + YSL Rouge Pur Couture Lipsticks

Lipstick is one beauty item I most definitely cannot live without (then followed up with mascara as a close second). It can be used on your cheeks for a pop of color when you are in a pinch and can brighten up any dull face to look alive and healthy. I don’t discriminate when it comes to lip products and can appreciate both high end and drugstore brands for what they offer. Influenster was gracious enough to send me two new YSL lip rouge products to test out for our readers! Disclaimer* although these items were sent for review, my opinions and thoughts are mine. Obviously being YSL, the packaging is pristine and I was so giddy opening up the package. The two colors shown are both Rouge Pur Couture in numbers 9 (rose stiletto) and 19 (fuchsia). Retailing at $36 these babies have a high shine satin finish, intense pigmentation and hydration for the lips. I have swatched them below for my ladies out there with my specific skin tone.
Pros
• Intensely Pigmented
• Packaging
• Hydration
• Finish
Cons
• A little pricey (to be expected with a higher end brand)
• The smell is a little bit strong and distracting (in my opinion)

Thanks to influenster for this amazing treat, I can now add these luxurious “grown up” lipsticks to my collection!

ysl, makeup, lipstick, review, influentster

ysl, makeup, lipstick, review, influentster

ysl, makeup, lipstick, review, influentster

ysl, makeup, lipstick, review, influentster

Rose Stiletto (09)- On my skin tone it is a perfect rose nude for everyday purposes.

ysl, makeup, lipstick, review, influentster

Fuchsia (19) The perfect hue of pink for a fun pop of color.

XOXO- Ari
Link to purchase the lipsticks – HERE

Trend Alert- Button Up A-line Skirt

Trends can be tricky especially if you buy something that will only work for you for one season, or one type of event. I typically love following trends but really put thought when it comes to actually buying them. If the piece is flattering, I then think about the many ways I could wear it (will it be suitable for work, or an evening out, casual lunch etc.). If the item can be worn many ways and throughout different seasons then I can justify investing in it. It’s a big plus if it’s a great material that will be long lasting. These button up skirts are all the rage now and can be seen on every blogger and fashionista alike. Seen mostly in denim or suede this A-line cut is super flattering for everyone and it incorporates the emerging 70’s style. I found this one at TJMAXX and immediately fell in love! The light weight material and length make it easier to wear year round here in Florida but can also be paired with tights for when it does get chilly. For this particular day I wore a denim button up, forever 21 mules and fedora hat to complete the look. How do you incorporate trends into your wardrobe? Comment down below! Links to similar items listed below.

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Forever 21 Mules
Forever 21 Fedora
TJMAXX Suede Button Up Skirt & also in Plus Size

XOXO- Ari

Kate Spade Agenda “Quick & Curious”

As you may or may not have guessed already, Kate Spade is my number one favorite contemporary women’s designer. Featured countless times here before, I love the way the brand merges modern feminine style with quirky and youthful pieces. The range of items is always classic yet with a fun twist. I knew for the start of Grad school I needed something to help keep me on track of my life and assignments and knew I could count on my favorite brand to deliver. I didn’t want just any old planner, but a distinctive one that would bring me some happiness on my many upcoming joyless nights I would be spent studying. I purchased the 2015-2016 planner with the quote “she is quick and curious and playful and strong”. I absolutely loved the color (although now I am worried about the wear on tear on this beautiful baby blue) and the quote really resonated with me and made me feel special. I printed out some pinterest art work based off of things I love and inspired by YouTube guru Summer Kellsey (New York, pin up girls, Paris, food etc) and proceeded to create a “theme” for each month. You can print your items on shipping labels to make for easier sticking or on regular paper as I did and just use glue to cut and paste the homemade stickers. I also incorporated some fun scrap booking elements that I always have stored from my scrap booking days (things like magazine cut-outs, glitter, and stickers). Have fun with this! You don’t have to decorate, it’s just as beautiful plain but I love the excitement it brings me to look at my “to do” list now that it’s all pretty. Links to the items can be found down below including our pinterest page where you can find some of the same graphics. Enjoy!

You will need:

  • Avery Shipping Labels- (only if you don’t wish to glue with regular glue)
  • Printer Paper
  • Scissors/ Glue
  • Odds and Ends that you find appealing to add (scrap book materials, photos etc.)

kate spade quick and curious agenda

My birthday month needed to be extra special! LEOS RULE!

My birthday month needed to be extra special! LEOS RULE!

"New York Minimalist"

“New York Minimalist”

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Each dividing month has an inspirational quote I love.

Each dividing month has an inspirational quote I love.

Use anything you'd like and get to decorating!

Use anything you’d like and get to decorating!

Kate Spade “Quick & Curious” Agenda
Avery Labels
Our Pinterest Page
Summer Kellsey Pinterest page

Toodles, Ari