Friday, September 25, 2015

What I wore - #VFSC and the Green MotelRocks Dress

Happy Friday!
This post is a little late on a Friday but I wanted to post it and not wait until next week!
I wore this green dress from MotelRocks, that has been sitting in my closet for a few years now, to the Vanity Fair Social Club event last weekend that I have been talking about! I was tired of things in my closet and wanted something new (seems like I have to go shopping soon and clean out my closet!), and I pulled out this dress that I haven't worn before! I used to be obsessed with MotelRocks, and they are a contributing reason for why I started my blog back in 2012 - I was ordering a lot of clothes from their site (and I had a code for 20% off, not sure if it still works but it's worth a shot! Andreah227), so it was kinda cool to have a brand that I loved! I got a free dress from them once too for winning a competition (now that I think of it I haven't worn that either!).
I am trying to go through my closet and drawers and clean out clothes that I haven't worn in a while, to make space for new clothes. My style is always evolving, and as I'm approaching my late 20s (I'm going to be 27 in February... crap!), I want a more polished style! 
This dress was a color block dress that I really liked, with a more loose top, and I paired it with a green statement necklace along with some comfortable sandals/heels that I have worn before. I knew I was going to be at VFSC for the whole afternoon and I wanted some comfortable shoes while still stylish!
Dress: Motel Rocks | Sandals: Local Store in Hawaii | Necklace: Charlotte Russe | Bracelet: Gift from Turkey and Cyprus | Ring: Barcelona shop

Do you have any plans for the weekend? I am working on campus tomorrow morning for a few hours and then hopefully working out (I am committed to getting back in shape, a run yesterday showed me how out of shape I am!). And then also hanging out with my boyfriend and some friends.

What do you think of this color block dress? Do you have anything similar? Have you heard of MotelRocks before?  What is your favorite pair of heels/sandals that are comfortable? Let me know in the comments below!

xo
Andrea




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Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Lee Stafford Ubuntun Oils from Africa Hair Product Review

Hello loves!
Hope you had a lovely weekend!
I had the opportunity to go to a Vanity Fair Social Club (#VFSC) Two Day event over the weekend in celebration of and leading up to a viewing party for the Emmy Awards, so I have lots to post about that coming up soon! It was a lot of fun and I got some freebies, if you have been following my Instagram or Twitter feeds! (If you aren't, you should! Go click the links above and to the left!!)
But more on that later this week!
 
Today I am bringing you a review of these Lee Stafford Ubuntu Oils Hair Products I was sent to try out. I have been trying them for some time in order to get a feel for the products, and I want to share with you my thoughts and maybe a little bit of science behind the oils.
Recently (or in the last 2-4 years) I feel like Moroccan or Argan Oils have been THE ingredient or oil to have in your hair products for the ultimate moisture and styling, I just remember everyone was going crazy about moroccan oil. I was really intrigued when I got an email about trying these products, because they contain various African oils (Baobab, Mafura, Marula, and Mongongo Oils) that will "replace Moroccan Oil in 2015, created to pamper, repair and restore hair to its full goodness." Do these products stack up to Moroccan Oil?
First of all, I had to look this up - and it was a little difficult to find hard published facts on these oils because all of the google hits that kept coming up were from various hair products containing these oils. So I had to read multiple sources and even went into reading published articles on these to verify some of the "facts."
 Baobab oil comes from the African Baobab tree, which is called the Tree of Life, mainly because people have carbon dated these trees for hundreds of millions of years. These trees grow rather large and during their lifetimes (average life of 500 years but some trees have been said to be 5000 years old!), they just look like large stumps without leaves, but can store a great amount of water. And even when they are mature, a lot of the tree stumps are hollow and can provide shelter and protection. When they a flourishing, the tree gains a lot of leaves at the top and have flowers that smell like rotting meat (ew?) . The oil from the seeds of this tree is said to be full of vitamin A and E to act as a moisturizer for hair in addition to sterols and fatty acids. The other oils mentioned above (Mafura, Marula and Mongongo) come from other trees from different parts of Africa (Zimbabwe, Madagascar, etc.), and are said to restore coarse and damaged hair. Because of their concentration, they can permeate hair cuticles and help repair deep down, and some of the oils are made of fine molecules that can be easily absorbed and not weigh hair down. Mongongo oil is said to be rich in Omega 6 Fatty Acids which makes it great for hair hydration and protection.

I was sent a complete set of hair products that can be found at Ulta or Ulta.com, varying in price range from 10.99-12.99, so they are rather affordable (although a little on the high end for shampoo/conditioner, since I usually just use Herbal Essences and Aussie brand moisturizing conditioner), but still cheaper than the "designer brands" you see sometimes. And if these products do what they claim, then it should be a stellar deal!

Moisturizing Shampoo, Hair Butter and Conditioner with Baobab Oil
At first, I couldn't pronounce the name Baobab, I kept messing it up. And I was really interested to see if this would work in moisturizing my hair. I have been using Moisturizing and smoothing shampoo and conditioner from Herbal Essences and Aussie brand, so this combination of products was perfect! I used these in the shower first using the shampoo, then using the hair butter in my hair for 5 or so minutes while I lathered up, and then finished with the conditioner. I used these products the longest and was fairly pleased with them. The shampoo and conditioner were pleasant to use, but I wish I had a bigger bottle of both! I have thick long hair so I tend to use a lot of both shampoo and conditioner! The shampoo didn't lather as much as I'm used to, so I had to use a little more. The hair butter that I put in my hair as a mask was rather interesting, and felt very weird. It definitely felt like butter, instead of the usual feeling of a hair mask, but it actually left my hair feeling clean and full of moisture. Surprising! I didn't like the buttery texture but it was actually good! So give this a chance if you try it! And I really enjoyed using the conditioner, out of the three products I liked the conditioner the most!



Moisturizing Heat Protection Spray and Moisturizing Blow Dry Smootheee with Baobab Oil
I really liked both of these products as well. I have been trying to curl my hair or blow dry my hair a lot more lately, and I noticed I have a lot of damaged ends and split ends, because I haven't been using a heat protecting spray. This was a great opportunity to use the heat protection spray and I really liked the feeling - it was like a light mist and I noticed my hair didn't feel fried after running the flat iron on top of it! And the Blow Dry Smootheee worked wonders in keeping flyaways and frizz away! I use it even without blow drying my hair, and just run it through damp hair after I jump out of the shower if I don't have time to blow dry my hair! My hair dries perfectly fine!



Repair Oil with Mafura Oil, Light Oil Repairing mist, and The Color Fade Protection Oil Treatment
I didn't use these three products as much, but I did use the Repair Oil and the Light Oil Repairing mist a few times, like I said, I have a lot of damaged ends so it did make my hair feel refreshed and restored when I did use them. The Color Fade protection oil I didn't use because my hair is not colored, but it contains Mongongo oil, which should hydrate damaged and dry color treated hair and protect in between coloring and hair cuts.



Overall, I really liked these products, and did see a slight difference in my hair, as my hair feels less frizzy and more smooth. I will definitely be purchasing the shampoo, conditioner, and the blow dry smootheee again, and possibly the heat protection spray (that can probably last me a while!).



What do you think about these products? Have you tried any of Lee Stafford's products before? Did you love Moroccan Oil or Argan Oil hair products? Have you tried any of these African Oils for your hair? Do let me know in the comments below.

xo
Andrea

PS. I was given these products to test out but all opinions are 100% my own and not biased in any way!


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Friday, September 18, 2015

Loreal LA Palette Nude 2 - Smokey Cut Crease Tutorial

Happy Friday!
I am bringing back my makeup tutorials, as I haven't had a chance to do one in a while! I am also going to get back on track for 2 posts a week, I was trying hard to keep up but with traveling and the stresses of life I had been posting once a week! But I have a lot of fresh new content to deliver so be on the lookout for more things! 
I am SO so so happy it's Friday! I had such a busy and stressful week, and it's finally over. I easily worked over 60 hours this week, and those 60 hrs were spent on preparation work and literally running around all day, so I don't feel as bad not going to the gym or working out. Although I have been trying to do some yoga every day!
Here is a makeup tutorial for a look I wore this past weekend to a fellow blogger's baby shower using a new Palette I have had for a while but never opened, the L'Oreal LA Palette Nude 2! I got this Palette at the Vanity Fair Social Club event for the Oscars a few months ago but I never used it because I was so obsessed with my Urban Decay Palettes. One day I thought I would try to create a new look with this palette and I fell in love with the colors! They are all matte, but they create a really glam look when paired correctly! The palette even has some look tutorials on the back!



And now the Tutorial:


1. Sweep the lightest shade labeled (1) along the lash line and into the tear duct/inner corner of your eye to highlight your eye.
2. Next, I added (2) across the middle portion of my eye, sweeping enough to see a difference in the shade.
3. Lastly, I added a combination of two darker shades I labeled (3) at the outer corner and also into the crease, to add some definition.
4. I then used my favorite Maybelline Line Stiletto liquid liner to create this winged look (for tutorial check out my tutorial HERE.
5. I then coated my upper and lower lashes with Urban Decay Perversion Mascara to complete the look!

What do you think about this look? What kind of event would you wear this look to?
It reminds me of a cut crease look that I have seen on other makeup artists particularly on instagram!

Let me know what other kind of makeup tutorials you would like in the comments below!

xo
Andrea


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Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Delicate top and blue jeans

Hello loves!
Another day, another week! How fast time flies! I can't believe the weekend is already over and it is already Tuesday! The academic school year starts next week, and while I don't have to take classes, it means back to business. In grad school, the summer is considered most productive and chill, but this year I feel like I didn't accomplish much! I powered through a lot of work in a month and a half in the beginning of the summer (June-mid July), and then ever since I went on vacation, I haven't been able to get back into the groove of things until now. I know I know I keep complaining about how I feel burnt out, but I really am! haha!
Well, to spice things up, I am trying to get some new pieces to wear to work, and I really liked this delicate top I found at Zara this past weekend! It is really pretty and soft, with some felt detail, paired with these Zara jeans and black booties! Super casual but still dressy! Can you tell I am loving Zara lately?!

Top: Zara | Jeans: Zara | Accessories: Bag: Versace | Sunglasses: Mango | Bracelets: Various and gifts | Booties: Target


The top is flowy, and I actually wore a skinny belt with it around my waist and turned it into a makeshift peplum top! It was rather cute!

Paired with some gold accessories, I really liked this outfit! It was perfect for work!

What do you think about a nice flowy top? Do you like Zara? What is your staple piece for this fall? Did you pay attention to #NYFW this past week? Did anything catch your eye? 
Let me know in the comments below!

xo
Andrea




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Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Chevron Skirt and Crop Top - Zaful review!

Hello loves!

Happy Hump Day! Can't believe it is already Wednesday! Hope you all had a great long weekend (if you took Labor Day off!). I decided to take it off instead of going to work, because, well, why not! I was regretting it yesterday when I realized how much work I have to do and already is closer to the weekend than I would expect... But never regret something in the past because at some point it was exactly what you wanted ;) I seem to still feel under the weather, as I have been the past month, I think traveling has really gotten to me, and it's either stress or I'm actually sick, but I've been feeling tired and have headaches and toothaches rather frequently. I am going to try to get checked out soon.

I was able to hang out with a lot of friends this weekend, which was exactly what I needed! I was out and about all weekend, and I fell in love with this beautiful Zaful Wavy striped crop top and skirt set to go to dinner with a friend! I was a little hesitant to order it online without trying it, because even though I knew my measurements I was worried it would be too small on me, but it ended up being the perfect size! I received it in the mail just when I got back from Cyprus, and I was finally able to wear it and shoot it and let me tell you, in 3ish weeks, I must've lost an inch or so in my waist because when I wore it this weekend it zipped up so easily versus before! I've been trying to be active 4-5 times a week, and it has really made a difference!

I've been seeing so many people and bloggers wearing crop tops with skirts, and I really love the trend! It is super cute, but I always thought it wouldn't look too great on me, but after seeing the set on me, I am in love! It is super comfortable too, with the skirt being super flowy and flattering! I actually wore this skirt again the next day with just a black tank top tucked in and created a whole new look (wish I took some photos of the next outfit, oh well!). The crop top was also flattering. I was worried the "girls" would be too big, but the crop top had a cute little hidden zipper on the side, so it fit perfectly! I had a hard time picking an outfit on Zaful because everything was so cute, and when I first spotted this combo I fell in love, but being insecure of how it would look I kept scrolling, but kept coming back to this outfit! So glad I went with it!

And now the photos ... What do you think about this outfit? I paired it with some really cute wedges, which were the perfect summer touch that I bought from Charlottee Russe, and this really stunning coin necklace I bought while in Barcelona at a shop called Ale Hop. I love my pieces I bought while abroad! 

For the shoot, I found this really cute "Love" wall nearby and fell in "love"! haha! There are a lot of walls like this around LA, it's a rather cool spot to shoot at as a blogger!


Crop top and Skirt Set: c/o Zaful | Shoes: Wedges, Charlotte Russe | Necklace: Ale Hop | Bracelets: Gift | Purse: Zara | Sunglasses: Mango

What do you think about this crop top and skirt trend? Have you seen others wearing it? Would you wear it? What's your favorite outfit from Zaful??! I can't decide, but this outfit takes the cake!

Let me know in the comments below!

Have a great rest of your week!

xo
Andrea







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Friday, September 4, 2015

Style Trends: Cheap dresses for a Fall Formal Event

Hello loves!
Happy Friday! I am sooo glad it is basically the weekend! This week seemed to drag by. I finally got back into the groove of things (it only took me a month! oops!) but I guess everyone needs time to relax and destress!
I really can't believe it is September! Fall is basically here (or so it seems, in LA it is still just hot), so I am excited for the new trends that I'm feeling -- I would love for the weather to cool down a bit so I can wear boots and sweaters, but I can still incorporate some pieces into my wardrobe!
In addition, there are lots of events going on in fall, including fall weddings or other formal events to attend, whether it be anniversary dinners, birthday dinners, baby showers, weddings, etc., and here are my picks!
I love maroon/purple/dark blue for fall - perfect shades for the day getting shorter (sigh! I don't like shorter days...), and the impending cold (we wish, in LA!). I really like these flattering darker formal dresses from Promtimes.co.uk, cut right above the knee! Perfect length, and they are all under $50! Super affordable even for a poor grad student on a budget!  I love the different cut necklines, from one shoulder to sweetheart strapless to regular straps, they all seem to be flattering! and can be worn for many different occasions! Accessorized with the perfect statement necklace (I'm feeling silver accent pieces this Fall) and the right heeled pumps (nude or black?), perfect outfit for a night out or wedding/event!

Style Trends: Cheap dresses for a Fall Formal Event
I also thought Promtimes.co.uk's selection of "wedding" dresses was stunning - these dresses are marketed as wedding dresses for under 100$, but I could see myself wearing these to formal events too!  again I loved the different necklines, particularly the first one where there is lace! I also recently adore sweetheart necklines! how romantic. I thought strapless is great, and I picked these fun short dresses (I guess there is now a trend for short wedding dresses!).

All of these dresses from Promtimes.co.uk are cheap and look fabulous! Accessorized with the right pieces, you have the perfect outfit for any special occasion!
I would accessorize with a silver statement necklace, along with some bracelets or an arm cuff chain (how cool! I loved it when I saw it, I would totally rock it!). And makeup - for fall, I am loving a smokey glam look similar to some makeup looks I have created in the past using my Urban Decay palettes!
What do you think about these dresses? What kind of trends are you wearing for the fall? Do you have any special events you will be attending this fall like a wedding or another formal event? Do you have any other cheap alternatives for students on a budget? Let me know in the comments below!
xo
Andrea
PS. The winner of my Blog Birthday Giveaway is ... Shanna! I will be contacting you via email, so keep an eye out for that!! Thanks to everyone for entering and taking part in my Blog Birthday Celebration! I will have another giveaway soon! 

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