9.17.2014

Liz Earle Hot Cloth Cleanser

I received a sample of Liz Earle Hot Cloth Cleanser last month in my Birchbox and finally got around to trying it just this week. Liz Earle is a brand that was started in the UK by two friends that had backgrounds in botanical skincare and the beauty industry and wanted to create a luxurious line that used naturally active ingredients and was affordable at the same time.

The Hot Cloth starter kit (the sample size is pictured below) comes with a 3.3 oz. cleanser and 2 muslin cloths. I'm a sucker for packaging and branding, and even the sample of the starter kit was beautifully presented in a turquoise box. The blues and greens are just so zen and spa like, you can definitely tell that one of the founders had a background in beauty marketing and product development!


The Hot Cloth cleanser is a two step cleansing process that involves a creamy cleanser and a cotton muslin cloth. The cleanser uses gentle and soothing ingredients like cocoa butter and eucalyptus, yet when it's polished off with the damp cloth, it feels like it's truly deep cleaning. It has a subtle, calming scent and was perfect for my sensitive skin. My face didn't feel tight or tingly afterwards, it just felt clean, smooth, and even. This is definitely a product that I will purchase in full size once my sample runs out, and I'm already thinking about trying other products from Liz Earle like the Brightening Treatment Mask or the Gentle Face Exfoliator.

NOTE: I just noticed that Birchbox is running a promotion on their website where you get a free Hot Cloth Starter Kit with any full size Liz Earle purchase with the code CLEANSEANDPOLISH. If you're interested in trying the cleanser, definitely scoop it up for free along with another product!


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9.16.2014

Fall Wardrobe Essentials

If you need to stock up on some basic fall wardrobe pieces, now's the time to do it. J.Crew is offering 25% off full price fall styles and additional 30% off sale through September 24th.

With the items below, you'll have the start to a basic mix and match fall wardrobe. An olive field jacket and a denim jacket are the perfect toppers for cool autumn evenings. As you finally let go of summer white, ecru skinny jeans will become your new go to. A pearl cluster necklace adds an air of elegance to any outfit. Leopard loafers and a pair of ankle boots are two of the most versatile shoes you will find. An oatmeal colored cardigan is thrown on anytime there's a chill in the air. A leather detail skirt is a must for adding a bit of edge. Don't forget a colorful dress for those occasions when you need to stand out. 








Shop these fall basics (on sale!) using the images below!




9.15.2014

Revisiting Pinterest

I have had a backup of bookmarked blog posts for the longest time and this fall I'm working my way through pinning and organizing all these posts in my Pinterest. I was a huge fan of Pinterest when it first came out but assumed it was somewhat of a passing fad and didn't pay much attention to my boards for a year or two. 

Well, I was wrong, and now I've become Pinterest obsessed again. Follow my boards here



I definitely pin the most on my Interior Design Inspiration and Style I Love boards, but I also have boards on everything from Hair to Makeup to Recipes. I recently started a board where I include links to products that I feature on my blog


Another one of my favorite boards is The Icons where I have gorgeous images of Audrey, Grace, Jackie, and all the classic beauties. I also, not surprisingly, also have a board dedicated solely to images in striped shirts.


Follow me on Pinterest and stay tuned as I add even more gorgeous images to these boards!

9.11.2014

Fall Wedding Attire

Let me start off by saying, I love getting dressed up for weddings. I have far more dresses in my closet that are cocktail or  wedding appropriate than I will ever need. Winter, spring, summer, I'm good to go. However, early fall weddings throw me for a loop. It's still warm out, but it's post-labor day and I don't feel appropriate wearing bright colors and bold patterns.

A navy dress, like this one from Camilyn Beth, seems like the perfect fall wedding solution. Accents of kelly green on the clutch and these fabulous earrings from Amrita Singh are still cheerful, but not too summery. These gold shoes are the ultimate cocktail attire shoe - they will seriously go with everything and anything year round.  A classic gold bracelet brings out the stunning gold buttons that line the back of the dress.

As for the makeup, the pinkish-coral-gold tones play off any lingering summer tan. I have been dying to try this eyeshadow palette from Urban Decay. I have the Naked Basics and absolutely love it (it's worth the splurge!), and this Rose Gold palette is next on my wish list. Makeup Forever Smoky Extravagant is a wonderful, feathery mascara and don't forget a spritz or two of setting spray before you head out the door - it truly makes a difference in the lasting power of your makeup.



Want some other fall dress options? This equestrian inspired dress is perfect for an outdoor wedding in horse country. For a seaside affair, temper the bright color of this lace dress with navy accessories. Or, for a more flitzy affair, try this green and metallic number

Shop this fall wedding look using the links below!

9.09.2014

Autumn Closing In

While perhaps a strange place to find inspiration, that craigslist ad that's been circulating all over the internet today reminded me that autumn is quickly approaching. The air in Washington already has the cool, light breeze and crisp quality of an October afternoon, and there's a feeling of transition looming.

Never one to let a season pass me by, I'm jumping on the fall bucket list bandwagon and making sure I squeeze every last bit out of this in between time of year.


I once read that despite the bad rap that taking pictures seems to get these days, especially as you see images of wedding receptions or concerts where everyone seems to be on their phone, snapping photos can actually be a good thing, assuming you take the time to look back on these photos and revisit the memories. Looking back for images in this post certainly was an exercise in doing just that. 

Now, on to the list of memories to start working on this fall...

1. Football Games: There have been years where I have made it to almost every home U.Va. game. This year, unfortunately, is not going to be one of those. However, I do need to make it to at least one game this season because there is nothing like Charlottesville in the fall. I also would love to add an SEC game to my calendar. 

2. Wine Tasting: Another Charlottesville activity, I've already got this on the books for November. Now, it's just the tough decision of which vineyards to try, though one can never go wrong with King Family or Afton Mountain.

3. Farmer's Market: I have been saying this for ages, but one of these days I will start buying my produce at a farmer's market. There's one on Saturdays just a short walk from my apartment, so there's no excuse. Fall vegetables are my favorites, so this is the perfect time of year to make this a habit. In the same vein, I still need to check out Union Market.  

4. Apple Picking: How have I never been apple picking?! Perhaps it's because I don't love apples, but there are so many things to do with apples besides eat them plain. Apple butter, applesauce, apple pie, apple crisp. The possibilities are endless, and this year I'm going to pick those apples and turn them into something delicious. 

5. Crock Pot Cooking: Fall is a time for warm, filling, slow cooked meals and I'm vowing to put my crock pot to good use whenever there's the slightest chill in the air. I've already gotten started this week with a chicken and sausage jambalaya and I'm going to try out a chili recipe (no beans!) next. Plus, this is a wonderfully budget friendly way to cook. I have the crock pot linked to here, and I highly recommend it. 


So here's to a busy autumn filled with college football, days spent admiring the flame colored trees, burning fall scented candles, drinking bourbon on the rocks, and wearing slightly scuffed riding boots. And, please, no #PSL instagrams. 

9.07.2014

1960's Inspired

I've had a relaxing weekend capped off by cooking dinner and watching my all time favorite movie, The Graduate, this evening. I just love the style of the late 1960's and the decor of Mrs. Robinson's living room always makes me long for a house decorated with modern furniture, gold and black accents, and a bit of retro Palm Springs chic.


I pulled together a room inspired by that decor, and even incorporated a bit of leopard as a nod to that iconic coat.














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9.05.2014

Friday Favorites

Happy Friday! This week just sped by, as short weeks often do I suppose, and now I'm hoping to have a low key weekend before the frenzy of the fall begins.

I have just a handful of my current beauty favorites for you today.


I've blogged about spin pins before, and I'll likely blog about them again. They are my absolute favorite hair accessory. I have a lot of long, straight hair, and can achieve the sock bun look without an actual sock when I use these. I just wrap my hair into a bun shape, spin these in, and I'm good to go. 

I received this Cynthia Rowley lip stain in a Birchbox and am absolutely obsessed with both colors that I have (Valentine and Sugar). It's a thick, creamy stain that looks gorgeous with a shiny gloss swiped over it. Plus, it's truly long lasting. 

I love the coral-orange color of this Butter London nail polish. It's a great shade to wear throughout summer, but it can hold its own in early fall. I've still got it on my toes and probably will continue to wear it right through at least mid-September. This line of nail polish has great staying power and shine.


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9.04.2014

Post Labor Day White

Long gone are the days of retiring white jeans after Labor Day. I wear mine right through the fall paired with warm autumn neutrals. With thick white denim that doesn't stretch out one bit, the toothpick jeans from J.Crew are my absolute favorite. Paired with a striped bateau tee, it's a classic summer to fall look. Below, I've paired this combo with two different neutral color palettes. One featuring gray and black, the other gold and tan. What's your favorite way to wear white into fall?




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