• Beauty,  celebrities,  color,  Fashion

    Beauty do or don’t: matching your lipstick to your dress

    Beauty do or don’t? Megan Fox attended Ferrarri’s 60th anniversary gala last week with an interesting beauty/fashion combo: red lipstick that perfectly matched her red gown.


    It used to be going matchy-matchy with your makeup and clothing was a bit of a faux pas, but lately celebrities have been rocking this look more often. Personally I think Megan looks great, but I wonder: is this a beauty do or don’t? Is this maybe something you can only pull off when you’re a Hollywood actress in full femme fatale mode at a red carpet event?


    If you’re curious about the shade she’s wearing here: it’s Hourglass Femme Rouge Velvet Creme Lipstick in Icon [$30], but if you want a cheaper, vegan alternative, I would suggest Flower Beauty Kiss Stick High Shine Lip Color in Rose Bud [$6.98 at Walmart stores]. It’s a great classic red! Check out my review here or check out these three swatches and tell me: which one would be your “go-to” red?

    Beauty do or don't: matching your lips to your dress? Consider these cruelty-free red lippies!

    What do you think? Would you ever wear this look for a daytime/casual everyday event? What beauty do or don’t have you broken recently?

  • books,  product review

    Book review: ‘I’ll Have What She’s Having: My Adventures in Celebrity Dieting’

    (Disclosure: I received an advance reader copy [ARC] of this book from NetGalley for the purpose of writing an honest review. However I was not compensated for writing a review and as always all opinions are my own.)

    I'll Have What She's Having

    I’ll Have What She’s Having: My Adventures in Celebrity Dieting, by Rebecca Harrington (paperback, 176 pages). Expected publication date: January 6th, 2015. Four out of five stars.

    Funny, witty, and fast-paced, I’ll Have What She’s Having chronicles the attempts of author Rebecca Harrington to emulate the diets of the stars, from Posh Spice to Beyonce to Elizabeth Taylor. Her attempts are by turns successful, tear-inducing and sometimes downright disgusting, but she writes about them all with a breezy humor that makes you laugh even when you’re wrinkling your nose.

    Whether you’re a lover or a hater of celebrity diets, you’ll groan along with Rebecca and laugh out loud at her observations. Attempting to adhere to a potato-and-caviar dish apparently favored by Jackie Kennedy, she listens to one of Kennedy’s alleged favorite songs, “Limehouse Blues”, which she describes as sounding like “music that would play if you ever had a seizure in an amusement park”. Testing out recipes from Liz Taylor’s diet, she decides that plain veal is “disgusting, a bit like taking a cardboard box that has been left out in the sun, sprinkling it with lemon, and then eating it.”

    It’s almost a shame to post this review now, given that the book won’t hit shelves for another three months (thanks NetGalley for the ARC!), but in the meantime you can all add it to your TBR piles and pre-order it from Amazon or Barnes & Noble. My only complaint about this book is that it was honestly too short! I gobbled it down within a day and wanted more. Maybe a sequel will pop up in the future?

  • Thought Questions

    Thought Questions, #183-#189


    Unsplash Dustin Scarpitti

    (photo by Dustin Scarpitti via Unsplash)

    #183: What do you see when you look into the future? Sadly, I see things getting a lot worse for the world if more people don’t start working for change–in the environment, in politics, etc. If you just sit back and let things go, they won’t stay neutral–they’ll slide downhill. Even small changes in your personal sphere can add up and make a difference, so don’t ever think that you can’t do enough because you’re “just one person”.

    #184: What makes you angry?  Why? People who neglect or abuse animals. Like these assholes. I would never give one my kitties away for cash! They’re part of the family!

    #185: What is the most valuable life lesson you learned from your parents? To budget carefully and never overstep your means. I know a lot of other twenty-somethings who are in trouble financially because they racked up credit card debt, or bought a too-expensive car because they were able to stretch to make the payments at the time and now with a cut in hours or wages they can’t make those payments. My Dad also really hammered into us the importance of “saving for a rainy day”, which has saved my butt countless times.

    #186: What does love feel like? A blanket. Which sounds weird at first, but if you think about it, love makes you feel warm and safe and a bit soft, so I think it fits.

    #187: What are your favorite simple pleasures? I’m sure you couldn’t possibly guess this, but…books and tea. Yep. Shocking, I know.

    #188: If you could go back in time and tell a younger version of yourself one thing, what would you tell? To say “no” more. For years I struggled with being a people pleaser and as a result, I was often unhappy. Saying “no”–to a commitment you’d rather not make, a project you’d rather not take on, etc.–lets you take charge of your itinerary instead of being tossed around based on what other people want.

    #189: What do you do to deliberately impress others? Hmm…I don’t like showing off, so I don’t know.


  • Ten on Tuesday

    Belated Ten on Tuesday: vacation, kitty cuddles, and HTML woes


    1. Finally on vacation! Thank god. I know it’s terrible to be this thrilled to be away from work for a while…but I am.

    2. I ended up spending almost all of Sunday and Monday just sleeping. I didn’t even make it to the bed, I crashed on the couch.

    3. I’ve had such a craving for pitas lately, so I’m making some for dinner tonight.

    4. I could also do with tacos…and spring rolls…and pie…just all the yummy hearty stick-to-your-ribs food, basically.

    5. Now that it’s chilly the cats are extra cuddly. That’s a good thing!

    6. I swear using HTML can be one of the most irritating chores ever. I need to learn more about it.

    7. It’s time to break out the colored tights for fall.

    8. Looking at style posts on Pinterest just makes me realize how little I fix up anymore. It’s kind of sad.

    9. I think I have most of the items in my closet to recreate this look, or something like it. I’m just not sure if it would look cool on me, or silly.

    10. I would really love this world map necklace.

  • books,  product review

    Essentialism, by Greg McKeown (book review)

    Essentialism is the opposite of having it all--and it's a concept that changed my life.(Disclosure: I received a copy of this book from Blogging for Books in exchange for an honest review.)

    This is one of those “must-read” books for anyone who feels overworked, overwhelmed, and as though they’re no longer in control of their life. You could say it’s an “essential” read (do you see what I did there?) for the 24/7 generation–people who are hyper-connected, constantly taking on new commitments, mega-busy, and yet strangely enough, not accomplishing nearly as much as they would like.

    The author likens essentialism to cleaning out your closet, and if you’ve ever purged a closet overstuffed with clothes, then you know the familiar routine: decide which things you absolutely love (and therefore want to keep), which things you absolutely don’t want (and will therefore purge), and which things fall somewhere in the middle, meaning you probably need to think long and hard about why you’re hanging on to them.

    The comparison is an apt one, but McKeown takes it a step further by suggesting that if anything winds up in that third pile, you shouldn’t be considering hanging on to it at all. Rather, Essentialism says that something that you’re less than 90% thrilled about should go. The idea is to pare down your life to the absolute essentials and cut out all else, leaving yourself with more time and energy to devote to the things you really love. It’s basically a minimalist approach to life and work.

    McKeown outlines a practical approach to this pursuit, going over such important topics as how to define your top priorities, cutting your losses, the power of “no” (and how to say it gracefully!), why you can’t have it all (and shouldn’t try), and the reason setting aside time to sleep and play is important. Altogether I think this is an amazing book, and one everyone should read, whether you’re trying to streamline your career, balance a hectic home situation, or strike out on a new path in life. So I know what you’re thinking…why not five stars?

    Basically, I think there are situations in which you really just do not have the option of paring down. I agree that many people are too passive and don’t make the right choices in setting boundaries at work or with family, but there are times when you truly do have to sacrifice personal time or sleep to get things done–when caring for an ill family member, as a single parent working multiple jobs, as a student working and going to school, etc. I think a small dose of essentialism could help in even these situations, but it won’t revolutionize the situation. I don’t think the author is implying as much, but it would have been nice to see him acknowledge that in some cases, you will just have to grin and bear it as much as you can, because cutting out one of your commitments just isn’t practical.

    That said, I can honestly say that Essentialism has changed my life and my goal strategies in my twenties. Especially as I’ve sought to define my freelance career, it’s helped me to decide what to focus on and what to ignore. So if you’re a blogger or new business owner feeling overwhelmed by all your options, pick this up! It’ll help a ton!

    Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less, by Greg McKeown (hardcover, 260 pages). Published 2014 by Crown Business. Genre: business, self-help, psychology, management. Four out of five stars.