Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Style Tip: Expand Your Fashion Horizons

Three days before Christmas I was in Macy's shopping for Christmas gifts for my family. I wanted to see what kind of deals I could find during their "One Day" sale (Seriously, they have a One Day Sale every month). Don't ask me why I waited until last minute to shop for presents. Insanity, I know.

I took The Man shopping with me, which turned out to be more frustrating than fun. He had different ideas about what I should buy my family for Christmas. I would hold up a shirt that I knew my step-mom would like and he would make faces of disgust. Of course, there were things that he liked that were nothing close to what I had in mind.

He said,"You have to give them options. Expand their minds when it comes to fashion..."

He was right, but I'm not so sure my family would get the message.

I was reminded of the time I went into Forever 21 in downtown San Francisco. It's a little overwhelming shopping in that store because there's just so many things I like. As usual, though, I was drawn to classic, practical items that would last me for at least a few seasons.

I realized what I was doing and stopped myself. How could I dish out style tips on my blog and not follow my own advice about trying something new? So I grabbed this cute jacket/top (pictured above) that I normally wouldn't have tried on. I'm working on expanding my "fashion horizons".

What about you? Are you caught in a fashion rut? What have you done lately to expand your own fashion repertoire and be more creative about expressing yourself? The next time you go shopping, be adventurous and try something new!

Thursday, December 23, 2010

How to Choose and Wear Red Lipstick

"It's party season: Keep a red lipstick in your bag. Swipe it on after work, + your entire ensemble will suddenly seem so much more glam." --from @Space_NK on Twitter

When I was a teenager, my mom told me that wearing red lipstick or red nail polish made a young girl look like a "Jezebel". She only allowed me to wear neutral-colored makeup. I remember her coming home from work with a bag of Cover Girl makeup - brown eyeliner, brown blush, brown eyeshadow, and brown lipstick. It's no wonder that I stick to neutral makeup to this day!

Until this day, I still shy away from wearing red lipstick or nail polish because of what my mom told me. Besides, whenever I did try on red lipstick, it just didn't look right.

What I realize is that I wasn't choosing the right color for my skin tone. Here's an article if you want to learn the best red lip makeup for your skin tone.

How do you wear red lipstick the right way? Here is a video featuring the lipstick queen, Poppy King, sharing her tips:

Here is a video of MAC senior artist, Fatima, showing us how to get perfect red lips:

With the recent rainy, gloomy days here in Southern California, I wanted to brighten up my look. I decided to try out the Femme Rouge Velvet Crème Lipstick in Icon by Hourglass Cosmetics...

Hourglass Femme Rouge Velvet Creme Lipstick Review

After I erased that memory of my mom saying that red lipstick is just for "Jezebels", I realized how nice it looks. I love the creamy texture of this lipstick, plus it's fragrance free and refillable.

Update 1/1/11: Here's another article of interest from Total Beauty...

Finding the right shade for your skin tone can be frustrating, so we're here to help

Find the Best Shade of Red Lipstick for You

To shed light on which shade of red lipstick complements your unique skin tone, we consulted an expert to share application tips and product suggestions. See what she had to say …

What's your favorite color lipstick? Do you ever wear red lipstick?

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Ladies Sunglasses Online

Ralph Lauren Oversized Sunglasses
Accessorizing, as any girl knows, is the icing on the cake of style – it’s not where the substance of your vision lies, but your look wouldn’t be complete without it! Or But it can get expensive to keep up with all the latest purses, jewellery, belts, not to mention eyewear. The latter can often be quite pricey, but it’s not something you want to scrimp on, or your look may really suffer.

Websites such as pricedropper.co.uk are offering a whole new world of classy, elegant sunglasses at affordable prices. Here, we take a look at some of the best designer frames they have to offer:

Ralph Lauren Oversized
A sophisticated design giving the wearer a classic look, these lenses are fashionably oversized, with silver-plated arms as striking as the frames. The smoky lenses and the Ralph Lauren logo complete this timeless, Audrey Hepburn look.

Yves Saint Laurent Oversized
The Yves Saint Laurent brand has been at the cutting-edge of luxury brand fashion for more than half a century - and these fabulous sunglasses continue that trend with syle. And how. Striking blue lenses are set against teal frames, to create a bold statement for any woman brave enough to don them this season.
Roberto Cavalli Rectangular
Roberto Cavalli has carved out a name as one of the world's most respected fashion houses. Designs of feminine sophistication that are nonetheless edgy are what Roberto Cavalli is all about - and these sublimely understated sunglasses are a prime example of the designers elegance.
Tom Ford Aviator
Not your usual aviators, this stunning reboot of a classic is brought to you by ace young designer Tom Ford. Understated brown brings a sophistication heretofore unrealised in the classic aviator shades.
To see all these frames - and many more - visit the Pricedropper website, where you will find a wide range of designer sunglasses at cheaper prices than on the high street.

Should Beauty Pageants Still Exist?

tiara II

Do you think that beauty pageants should still exist? I came across this press release: America's Beauty Pageants Look to Redefine Teen & Child Beauty Pageants with Focus on Inner Beauty.

I think it is great that the beauty pageant philosophy has evolved, but at the same time I'm not sure if any type of pageant that compares women and nominates a "winner" should even exist.

You're still judging women - even if it is for their inner beauty. Every single woman has inner beauty. It's subjective. If you were to judge women on this aspect, they're still going to question themselves, still feeling like they're not good enough if they don't win.

Yes, it is good to celebrate women and their talents, but I'm a little tired of our society comparing people. I'm especially tired of seeing these magazines with their lists of "Top 100 Most Beautiful People", "Sexiest Women/Men", etc.

Just sayin'.

What do you think?

Photo Credit: Jennifer Donley

Thursday, December 16, 2010

5 Fashion Tips For Plus-Size Women

Queen Latifah shows off her curves..
If you’re a plus-size woman, sometimes it can be frustrating to find clothes that flatter your body. Heck, it can be hard for many women regardless of their body size to shop for clothes. However, just because you are plus-size doesn’t mean that you can’t discover your own unique style and make it work for you. Here are 5 fashion tips you might want to consider:

1.  Wear clothes that fit properly - Don’t wear clothes that are too tight, but at the same time don’t wear baggy clothes that hide your body. Avoid fabrics that cling to your body or textures that are stiff and bulky.

2.  Play up your best features - You can accentuate certain parts of your body to show off your curves. Perhaps a V-neck shirt or sweater will enhance and bring out “The Girls”. A nice belt will cinch your waist and add definition to your hourglass shape.

Mad Men’s Christina Hendricks knows how to show off her curves...

photo credit: Perry Hagopian
3.  Stick to small prints - If you’re going to wear something like plus size floral dresses, choose small prints as opposed to big prints that only make you look bigger. I like the floral dress pictured below (available at PlusSizeDresses.com).
Floral Dress From PlusSizeDresses.com
4.  Keep your look modern with fun accessories - For whatever reason, women who are plus-size tend to look older than their age.  Create a "younger", playful look with trendy accessories.

5.  Wear tailored, fitted jackets - It's winter time, so jackets are an important element in the wardrobe.  Tailored, fitted jackets should flare over the butt and cinch in to accentuate your waist.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Beauty Doesn't Equal Happiness

Cast of VH1's Football Wives
Cast of VH1's Football Wives
Last night I went through a very rare reality TV show binge and watched Football Wives, which I know is not very healthy for a woman's psyche, but for whatever reason I got sucked into the inevitable drama.

The reason why I say it isn't healthy to watch these types of reality TV shows is that they portray women in a negative light - especially women who are in relationships with professional athletes. But that's a whole different topic that I won't get into here.

However, whenever I watch reality shows like Football Wives, Basketball Wives, or even Real Housewives, it's a reminder that beauty does not equal happiness.

All the women on these shows appear to have everything - they're beautiful, they have money, designer clothes, and some of them even have successful businesses. And yet....they have all this drama and unhappiness in their lives. Many of them act like they're still in high school. I can understand why some of them leave the show. I would have done the same.

I won't name specific people, but there are some women who are so caught up in causing drama that it makes them look so ugly. They're so bitter and hateful. All the drama they create is so draining. Although I try to give them the benefit of the doubt because I don't know what they've gone through, at the same time I know that life is a series of choices. You either choose or at least make an effort to be a more positive person...or you don't.

Fame, money, or designer clothes does not make you beautiful. Being a positive, uplifting person makes you beautiful.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Holiday Look For Less

TheLooksForLess.com Holiday Contest Entry 

Yes, the holiday party season is here...and budget-minded fashionistas can still put together a party outfit without having to dish out the big bucks. After all, it's not how much you spend on a holiday dress, it's how you wear it, right?

TheLooksForLess.com has partnered up with LuLus.com for a fun contest. So I put on my creative designer hat today and conjured a simple, yet fun and festive outfit featuring a cute cream and black dress, peep-toe pumps with bows, a delicate and elegant bow necklace, and of course, a clutch to hold the Blackberry!

Pieces used in this spread...

Gorgeous Cream and Black Dress - Princess Dress - Holiday Dress -..., $49
Mixx Luisa 10 Black Glitter Bow Toe Platform Pumps - $39.00, $39
Artistic Woven Black Clutch - $17.00, $17

The total you would spend on this outfit is $120, which is not bad at all. You can always wear the shoes and use the accessories whenever.

If you want to show off your inner stylist and have a chance to win the dress of your choice, head on over to LooksForLess.com to enter!

It's been awhile since I've gone to holiday party that required donning a fun party dress, but if I win this dress, I'm definitely wearing it - party or not! What are you wearing for the holiday parties this year?

Conair Infiniti "You Style" Iron: Review + Giveaway

Conair Infiniti You Style 2-in-1 Styling Iron
Remember when I said that you could be a bombshell? I said that it takes attitude and confidence...however, having the right beauty tools can help as well.

My hair styling tool of choice is the flat iron. If there was a fire in the house and I had two minutes to grab the necessities, I'd make sure to grab my flat iron. (My laptop would be the first thing!) Because I have thick, course hair, a hair straightener is a must have.

I recently had the opportunity to review the Conair Infiniti "You Style" (MSRP $42). This is a 2-in-1 styling iron - you can go straight...or curly!

The iron has nano tourmaline ceramic-coated plates with curved cooling plates on the side to create the curls or waves.  You have a choice of three settings: Low (285-302 degrees), Medium (330 degrees), or High (360 degrees):

Because of my thick hair, I have to use the highest setting, but I don't even think 360 degrees is hot enough for my hair type.  This iron would be better for thinner hair.  However, my hair turned out pretty nice considering.
Before and After hair using Conair Infiniti You Style

The  Conair Infiniti "You Style" also comes with an instructional video disc that shows you how to use the iron to create curls or waves.  I went for a beachy, wavy look, which took about 10 minutes to create.

How would you like to win this flat iron so you can give yourself the gift of beautiful hair this holiday season?

Giveaway Rules:

There are a couple ways you can enter to win...

1.  "Like" the Beauty Is Within Facebook page and leave a hair styling tip on the wall.

2.   Tweet the following:  Enter to win the @Conair_Hair You Style flat iron from @youarebeauty (Ends 12/15) http://bit.ly/eAI2Xk #giveaway #hairstyle
  • Giveaway ends 12/15/2010 at 11:59 PM
  • One winner will be chosen at random via Random.org and announced on 12/16/2010
  • Winner must contact me with their mailing address/delivery instructions within 72 hours.  Otherwise, an alternate winner will be chosen.
  • Giveaway open to U.S. residents only
Stay tuned for more giveaways!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Beauty Tips: Natural Beauty Look

Natural Beauty

I've known about Polyvore for awhile now, but for some reason I haven't been inspired to create any spreads. However, the other night I started exploring the site and seeing all the creative fashion and beauty sets that others have created. Of course, the artist and designer in me started itching to create something too!

Products in this spread:

Personally, I'm more of a natural beauty myself. On a regular day I just wear lip gloss, a little blush, and mascara.  If you're looking for tips on how to get a natural look, check out the article below...

Find out how to rock the no-makeup makeup look

Natural Beauty
This is a TotalBeauty.com natural beauty article
Skin care and makeup pros share tips on how to look gorgeous using minimal makeup.

Monday, December 6, 2010

You Can Be a Bombshell Too

Do you have curves and aren't afraid to show them off? ELLE recently posted an article of the top 20 bombshell actresses and models in movies and TV which serves as a reminder that you can be a bombshell too!

My favorite from the list is Selma Hayek. She has been quoted as saying:
"People often say that 'beauty is in the eye of the beholder,' and I say that the most liberating thing about beauty is realizing that you are the beholder. This empowers us to find beauty in places where others have not dared to look, including inside ourselves."
It doesn't matter what you body shape is, how much you weigh, or how tall or how short you are. When it comes to being sexy, it's all about your attitude and confidence. Well, it does help if you have a makeup artist and a hair stylist, but whose to say that you can't learn those skills yourself?

If you want to create a bombshell look using makeup, you could try this makeup tutorial that I came across on YouTube...

Of course, when I think of bombshells, I think of the Victoria's Secret models. I found this video featuring some of the models sharing their thoughts about what it means to be a bombshell...

If you can feel it and believe it, you CAN be it. Now go out there and get your sexy back!

Fragrance I Really, Really Love: Harajuku Lovers Wicked Style "G"

Harajuku Lovers Perfume

Have you ever liked a perfume so much that it made you want to lick yourself? Ok, maybe it's just me.

This is how I feel when I spray myself with Harajuku Lovers Wicked Style "G". Harajuku Lovers' tag line is "A Fatal Attraction to Cuteness", and rightfully so. Not only does it come in the cutest bottle, but it smells oh, soooo good. Notes include a fruity floral of peach, pineapple, watermelon and raspberry.

The collectible line of limited edition fragrances are exclusively sold at Sephora, which consists of four other scents each with their own unique doll-like character. The character for Wicked Style "G" is the Omotesando girl and is described on the packaging:

"Driven to be a fashion forward individual, the Omotesando girl scours the high end and cutting edge shops and boutiques of Omotesando - otherwise known as "Tokyo's Champs-Elysees."

This is a great holiday gift for someone who loves fruity scents. If anything, it makes for a cute paperweight on your desk! Whenever I look at it, I smile :)

Disclaimer: Attention PR contacted me on behalf of Harajuku Lovers Fragrances to review this product.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Fashion Tip: It's All the Details

I'm a practical person when it comes to fashion. I tend to gravitate to classic pieces and my style is somewhat conservative.

This fall I've been living in leggings, t-shirts, and hoodies. Not exactly the most stylish pieces of clothing in my closet, but hey, I'm a writer and when I'm at home writing, I just want to be comfortable!

Although I may just be wearing leggings and a hoodie, I always try to throw in an accessory or a pair of shoes with a little detail - a conversation piece, if you will.

This fall my go-to item are these pair of Dollhouse boots I purchased at Marshall's. I love the gold zippers, which lends itself to a rock star look...

Hoodie: Ecko | Leggings: Forever 21

My mantra has always been: It's all in the details! It's those little style elements that can make a simple outfit look very stylish. Maybe it's a one-of-a-kind jewelry piece, a colorful hat with an interesting pattern, or even a sweater with unique buttons.

By the way, I will be posting some of my daily outfits over at Stylecaster. Check out my style profile and follow me!