We Finally Found the Perfect Night Cream for You 20-somethings
Posted 6 days ago by Amanda Raye
I’m 26, and finding the perfect night cream is extremely difficult. Most night creams on the market make my skin extremely oily in the morning, while others are just “too old” for me. I’m not trying to get rid of fine lines and wrinkles, and I don’t need to lighten brown spots.
But I really care about taking care of my skin, and finishing my nightly routine off with toner just seems wrong. So what do us 20-somethings do about the lack of night creams on the market for our age group? Nothing! Even though it took me six years, I finally found the solution.
I was recently introduced to a company called Stages of Beauty — the first and only skincare brand to be formulated specifically by age.
They have four different lines, with each line catering to a different age group. I tried Radiance, which is for women in their twenties. According to Stages of Beauty:
Biological changes happen like clockwork; however, most skincare brands fail to consider age in their formulations. As a result, our skin falls short of its absolute best. Stages of Beauty understands that we’re fighting against more than wrinkles! Many other changes are occurring, like increased sun sensitivity (triggering sun spots and spider veins), dulling complexion, and thinning and thirsty skin—just to name a few. At Stages of Beauty we believe that there is beauty in every stage of life.
I tested out the Radiance Treatment Cream and I was beyond impressed. It can be used both day and night, but since I already wear a lotion with SPF during the day, it has become my nighttime go-to.
The cream is extremely lightweight and goes on smooth. The bottle says to use 3-4 pumps, but two was more than enough for both my face and neck.
It applies almost like a gel, which I love! By the time I wake up, my skin looks refreshed — not oily. According to the website:
With continued use it is proven to help repair the skin and prevent the premature appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
Did I mention Stages of Beauty is all-natural? It’s not tested on animals and it’s free of sulfates, parabens, petrochemicals, synthetic dyes, phthalates, and GMOs! On the ingredient list you’ll see things like honeysuckle and radish root, so it’s perfect for those with sensitive skin.
This night cream isn’t budget-friendly (it costs $50 for 30ml), but it’s definitely worth the splurge. If you’re interested in giving it a try, they’re offering a free sample on their website!
What’s your favorite night cream? Let us know in the comments below!
This Face Shape Guide Will Make Shopping for Glasses Way Easier!
Posted 1 week ago by Amanda Raye
Just like car shopping, eyeglass shopping isn’t that much fun. You walk into a large room filled with hundreds of frames, you then have to try on almost every pair to find something that only looks “okay.” Did we mention the price? Frames cost so much money!
But the spec game has changed in just a short period of time. Now you can purchase stunning and on-trend frames for under $100 online. With no overhead charges, such as rent for a brick-and-mortar store or licensing fees for designer frames, online glasses websites are able to provide affordable, high-quality eyewear options.
But isn’t shopping for something that can make or break your look hard to buy online? It doesn’t have to be!
We teamed up with an optometrist from 39DollarGlasses.com. An online optical store that offers prescription eyewear at an affordable price (prices range from $39 – $150). Below she shared what types of frames you should consider based on your face shape.
Lucky you! If you’re fortunate enough to have a highly coveted oval face shape, framing your eyes should be easy. People with oval faces can indulge in practically any style. So whether you’re partial to bold cat eye looks or wide and wild oversized frames, you’re likely in the clear!
If you’re looking for eyewear to flatter your square face, go for a style that is slightly rounded. By sporting frames with curved edges, you will be balancing out your angular features in a stylish way.
To enhance your look, heart face shapes should go for frames that will compliment their features and balance out their facial proportions. Aviator frames do an excellent job enhancing heart face shapes because they help to balance out the narrower lower half of the face.
Balancing out the features of a person with a long face shape often requires shortening the length of the face, thus giving it a more oval appearance. A pair of thicker rectangle frames does an excellent job of drawing attention away from the length of the face. Try to find a style that has more depth than width; an important feature to shorten the look of longer faces.
Just like a diamond, this face shape is unique. To best show off a diamond shaped face, go for a pair of glasses that accentuates your already impressive cheekbones. Draw attention to your eyes and the top portion of your face with top-heavy frames. Diamond face shapes have their choice of frames with thicker top halves or semi-rimless styles.
The most flattering look for round face shapes is a style that can minimize the roundness of the face. To do so, avoid round or oval frames and instead opt for a more angular design. The straight lines on these frames help to soften the look of round faces.
So don’t be scared of purchasing frames online. As long as you put your face shape into consideration when shopping, you’ll love your frames. Below is more advice if you’re still not too sure.
- Oval – any style: oversized, rectangular, etc.
- Square – slightly rounded/curved shapes
- Heart – aviators
- Long – thicker and rectangular
- Diamond – thicker top halved or rimless
- Round – angular designs
7 Unique Engagement Rings For The Offbeat Bride
Posted 2 weeks ago by Amanda Raye
Wedding Season is pretty much over, but Engagement Season is just beginning! If you love looking at the engagement bling, you’ll have to check Instagram and Facebook on the reg. If you hate it, then you’ll have to avoid all forms of social media until late February.
If you’re more of a hater when it comes to engagement rings on social media, is it because you hate anything and everything wedding? Or are you just tired of seeing the same princess-cut white diamonds?
I’ll admit it myself, I definitely give some serious side-eye when girls show off their “one-of-a-kind” white diamond solitaires. Boring!
When I get married, I want my ring to be unique and stunning — truly one-of-a-kind. No white diamonds for this girl!
Below are seven beautiful engagement rings that will truly make you stand out.
1. Go Grey
Black diamonds are starting to become acceptable in the land of engagement rings. But grey? My eyes lit up with excitement when I saw this grey stunner on Fragments.
Sethi Couture Ring: $4,240 via Fragments
2. Go Royal
If it’s okay for Kate Middleton, then it’s okay for me. How can you not swoon over this sapphire ring?
Blue Sapphire Bea: $3,500 via Anna Sheffield
3. Black Diamond Love
Still love solitaires? This black diamond ring from Steven Alan is gorgeous and it won’t break the bank!
Black Diamond Solitaire: $1,995 via Steven Alan
4. Consider a Mineral
Want to avoid precious gems altogether? Tourmaline is considered a semi-precious stone, and the one below may be the most unique of the bunch.
Ambro Ring: $1,420 via D & I
5. Go Raw
Diamonds aren’t found all sparkly and shiny. So why not sport an engagement ring in its true form? We’re loving the raw diamonds available at Fragments. The one below is actually nine carats!
Vibe’s Persephone Ring: $9,740 via Fragments
6. Go Minimal
Who says you even need something sparkly? If sparkle and bling just isn’t your thing, consider wearing a simple band with some added flair instead.
Crown Band: $1,100 via Of a Kind
7. Go Green
Here’s another minimalistic ring that has a small amount of bling — just in case you can’t live without it. Green bling to be exact.
Aura Ring: $3,170 via Fragments
What ring was your favorite? Let us know in the comments below.
*We partnered with Fragments for this post.
Our 9 Favorite Street Style Trends from New York Fashion Week
Posted 3 weeks ago by Amanda Raye
Yesterday marked the last day of Fashion Week in New York City. We’re definitely sad, but we’re excited to see what London Fashion Week has in store for the fashion industry.
Of course seeing the new collections from our favorite designers is enjoyable, but nothing beats street style. NYC’s most fashionable residents attend NYFW every season, and believe me when I say this — they’re the real taste makers. Below are our favorite trends we spotted outside of Lincoln Center (where the magic happens).
1. Moody Florals
We’re loving the resurgence of moody floral prints from the 90′s! Proof that not all floral prints have to be ultra girly.
2. All Black
Want to look like a tough-as-nails fashionista? Consider wearing all black the next time you go out with your friends.
Metallic shoes and prints are up-and-coming and should be taken advantage of this fall.
4. Black and White
This combo will never go out of style. Never!
Have you always wanted to be a prima ballerina? We’re loving how these ladies wore the famous ballerina poof! You may not have the moves, but you can at least have the look.
How can you say no to plaid? It’s classy and perfect for the upcoming fall season.
Pattern mixing can be difficult, but these ladies pulled it off perfectly!
8. Rainbow Hair and Lips
We loved all the off-beat hair and lip colors! Consider giving it a try if you’re getting bored with your look.
We love hats since they automatically make outfits more interesting. They’re also great for hiding bad hair days!
What trend from NYFW are you going to try this September? Let us know in the comments below!
10 Minutes with Petite Entrepreneur Carolina Alvo (Q&A)
Posted 1 month ago by Amanda Raye
Psst, ladies. Did you know that half the population of women in the U.S. qualify as “petite” at 5’4” or under? Are you in disbelief? Is that because you’re thinking to yourself that if that were true, why do so many stores stock only “regular sizes” with petite departments being the afterthought, if there is one at all?
Petite entrepreneur and game-changer Carolina Alvo caught herself wondering the same thing, after time and time again spent purchasing items that weren’t made to fit her and having to trudge them to the tailor and pay for alterations. All 4’9” of her, along with hundreds of thousands of her fellow petites knew that petite is powerful, and that it was time to take some action.
So she founded her eponymous clothing line, Carolina Alvo, and started a “Petite is Powerful” movement. Her first move? The Kathleen Dress, a fit-and-flare beauty that’s perfect for day and night, is specifically designed to fit a petite frame perfectly.
Made in New York with the highest-quality fabrics and available in two lengths, the Kathleen Dress is going to revolutionize the petite retail world and bring awareness to this often neglected group of women, all of whom deserve to look and feel as beautiful as the other 50%.
Since we were so interested in Carolina’s mission, we decided we wanted to know more. If you interested in the “Petite is Powerful” movement, or what it’s like to work in fashion, read on.
*If you’re interested in a work-friendly clothing line that’s perfect for your petite frame, then support Carolina on Kickstarter!
Q&A with Carolina Alvo
All of your clothes are made in NYC! What made you want to do that? Was it hard to find a manufacturing company in the city?
The thought of going outside of New York, let alone overseas was too scary for a first-timer. It is my first time manufacturing anything so it was important for me to feel like I had as much control over the process as possible.
I worked with a production company in the Garment District to help develop the line and he has relationships with various factories in New York, so it was through him that we were able to find a factory that was right for us.
As a petite, clothes shopping has been difficult for most of your life. But has being petite affected you at work? At school?
When I was in school I was endlessly teased for my height. Most of the time it was harmless, but when you’re a young teenager you just want to be like everyone else, so it definitely becomes one more thing to be self-conscious about.
By the time I was in the workplace I wasn’t teased, but I was surrounded by mostly men and somehow I only ever had male bosses that were at least a foot taller than me. So being much smaller just exacerbated my feelings of insecurity early on in my career.
Your background isn’t originally in fashion. What/who gave you the confidence to enter this intense industry?
I just knew the opportunity was so big (half the female population is petite) and I knew no one was doing a good job solving it. Plus it was a very personal pain point, so I was passionate about getting it right – all together that gave me the confidence to look past the fact that I have no experience in fashion and just try to figure out how to solve this big problem!
What advice would you give to the girl who’s interested in a career in fashion?
Educate yourself on the industry, surround yourself with good mentors/advisors and go for it! If it’s your passion, you won’t regret it!
Also fantastic: Carolina Alvo will be donating 1% of all of their profits to Girl Rising, a global action campaign that helps young girls get into and stay in school.
Who else would you like us to interview for Broke & Chic’s newly launched career section? Let us know in the comments below!
Jillian Michaels Approved Fitness Gear? Okay!
Posted 1 month ago by Amanda Raye
Department stores all across the globe have been teaming up with big time celebrities for years, so it’s never a big surprise when a collaboration happens. But how many fitness collaborations have happened over the years? The answer is very few.
I’m not going to lie, I have a huge crush on Lauren Conrad’s style, so when she partnered with Kohl’s, you better believe I bought a few things from her line.
And the Sofia Vergara collab with Kmart? Guilty! So I got extremely excited last week when I received an email that Jillian teamed up with Kmart as well, but for fitness gear.
My first intro to hardcore fitness was in high school; I played field hockey, lacrosse, and I did a season of indoor track. That was about nine years ago when fitness gear consisted of ugly running sneakers, really boring shorts that didn’t fit right, and an old t-shirt. Can you say blah?
Today I’m so inspired to workout. Not only because I want to get fit, but workout gear these days is so gosh darn cute and stylish! And this new collection from Jillian that’s available at Kmart is no different.
Just see for yourself!
I’m crushin’ on this collaboration for two reasons. One, Jillian is extremely motivating — she has changed so many peoples lives over the years for the better. And two, her collection is affordable. Take that Lululemon!
What do you think of the Impact by Jillian Michaels collection?
4 Outfits You Totally Need to Wear This Weekend
Posted 1 month ago by Amanda Raye
Where has the summer gone? It seems like just yesterday we were all still bundled up in our favorite winter coats. Although the heat has been extra brutal these past few days, the weekend forecast is looking beyond perfect. Blue skies, cool nights, no rain, and bearable day temps.
Take advantage of this upcoming August weekend by hanging out with friends and going to fun events or places in your town/city. Go vintage shopping, try a new restaurant, or even indulge in a brunch filled with Southern comfort food.
If this seems like your kind of weekend, check out these outfits styled by Marlen, the voice behind Messages on a Napkin. She knows what’s what in the fashion department!
1. Ramen Soup Shop
It’s odd, but drinking hot things on hot days can cool the body down. It’s a weird fact, but we’re just going to go with it. We vote for ramen!
2. Vintage Pop-up Shop
Pop-up shops are getting extremely trendy in even the smallest of towns. So keep an eye out for pop-up shops in your area.
3. Southern Brunch
Brunch is a weekend must! And how can you say no to fried chicken and waffles?
4. Drive-in Theater
These retro venus still exist, so look up the closest one to you and bring a few friends.
The outfits above are even fall friendly! Just add a pair of tights and you’re set. Which look was your favorite?
Life Lessons from Young Playwright Brandon Monokian (Q&A)
Posted 1 month ago by Amanda Raye
Brandon Monokian is a writer, actor, director, entrepreneur, and overall, an outrageous human being. He’s hilarious, talented, and extremely hard-working, and at the ripe age of 27, he’s accomplished more than many do in a lifetime.
He recently closed the fourth production of his darkly comedic play, Grimm Women; a gritty, modern adaptation of the Brother’s Grimm Fairy tales that starred reality TV celeb Briella Calafiore. Even though Monokian is still considered up-and-coming, he’s worked with the likes of How Stella Got Her Groove Back’s Suzzanne Douglas and Harry Potter star Christian Coulson.
We sat down for an interview with Brandon at his beach house on the Jersey Shore to discuss all things theater, wine, and NYC:
Let’s start easy. What are your plans for the remainder of 2014?
Next up, a new play I wrote, Peter Pan is Dead. We’re bringing it to the Philly Fringe Festival, and artist Sara Sciabbarrasi and I are going to release it as a comic book.
I also have a few acting gigs sprinkled in there, writing some film and stage scripts, and will be continuing to expand my Cork & Wood product line.
*Peter Pan is Dead will play September 6 – 21 at the Philadelphia Fringe Festival. For tickets to the show and to purchase the comic book, visit his website.
That seems like a lot! What does a normal day look like for you?
There’s never really a “normal” for me. I’m working on so many different types of projects, that the structure of my day (and location of my work) changes constantly.
My only daily rituals are that I start my day with a cup of black coffee while reading the news, go for a long walk at some point, and end the day with a glass of red wine.
What advice would you give to someone who’s interested in a career in drama?
Have other interests besides drama. Pay attention in your classes that don’t have to do with theatre. Nobody wants to work with an idiot actor who can only talk about how much they love Frozen and Judy Garland YouTube videos.
Don’t be a douche. There are a billion and a half other people who can do what you do, and do it better, so be nice. Not fake nice, just be a genuinely nice person, because otherwise you are going to have a lot more problems in life than just succeeding in your career. You poop too, so don’t act like you don’t.
Believe in yourself more than anyone else believes in you. If you don’t think you have something special to contribute to the world of the arts, then why the hell would anyone else? Don’t be a cocky ass about it, just trust in what you have to deliver.
And finally, never sing Wicked, Rent, or “Memory” from CATS at an audition. Unless you’re Jennifer Hudson. Then sing whatever the fuck you want.
What challenges have you faced since moving to NYC?
I spend more on Juice Generation than I do on rent. It’s an addiction. They even have a smoothie you can drink straight out of a coconut. Because nothing says “this is the douchiest thing I’ve done all week” quite like walking down Broadway drinking out of a coconut. I love it.
What do you wish you could tell your 18-year-old self?
If a giant ass handle of vodka costs $12, do not take 11 shots of it. In addition to $12, it will cost you your dignity and your ability to ever drink vodka again.
What’s your favorite restaurant in New York?
Automatic Slims in the West Village has the best asparagus in the world. I know that’s a weird thing to be the best at, but they are. They have a pretty sick happy hour, too.
I’m also a huge sucker for Le Pain Quotidien. If I ever murdered someone and was put on death row, I’d definitely request their hummus for my last meal.
Who should we interview next for Broke & Chic’s new career section? Let us know in the comments below!
Update Your Space with These Totally Awesome Pillows
Posted 2 months ago by Amanda Raye
Don’t think pillows can make your day? Think again. Fashion is a great way to cheer up, but decor and interior design can be even more powerful — both have the ability to brighten your day, and bring you down. But even budget decor havens such as Ikea can break the bank.
So, if your abode has been making you feel blah lately, don’t fret. All you need to add is a pillow! Below are six fun pillows under $45 that have the power to put a smile on your face every morning and night.
1. Hippie Kitty Pillow
This pillow from Zara Terez will not only make you smile, it’ll make you laugh too! How can you not? It’s a borderline psychedelic pillow with a kitten on it. Aww!
This company doesn’t just stop at cute cats either. You can get a pillow with pizza, unicorns and even emojis on it!
2. Happy Goat Pillow
This Etsy seller has an array of photographs that have been transferred onto pillows. Out of the array of photos, this happy goat image really stuck out.
Don’t you just want to close your eyes and smile like the goat?
3. Leonardo Dicaprio Pillow
Thought you could only wake up next to Leo in your dreams? Nope, this is real girl.
4. Beyonce Pillow
Yes, you did wake up like that…
5. Colorful Pillow
Color makes everyone happy! Right? If brights make you smile, you should consider a pillow from either Crystal Walen or Bianca Green. Both designers know a thing or two about color.
6. Inspirational Pillow
Everyone needs a good vibe or two in the a.m. and right before bed. How about “Get it Girl” or “Work Hard, Stay Humble” for an extra push?
Which pillow was your favorite? Let us know in the comments below!
7 Beauty Essentials Worth the Splurge
Posted 2 months ago by Amanda Raye
We’re all about affordable beauty products and skincare — we just love a bargain! But there are definitely some top-notch beauty products out there that can’t be beat.
Most high-end products last longer than their cheaper counterparts, the ingredients are often of a higher quality, and you can usually notice a difference immediately. But what products are worth the splurge, and which ones are better left for Target?
Below are seven beauty essentials that are just way better with the higher price tag.
1. Face Moisturizer
A good face moisturizer is a must! We recommend a basic light lotion with SPF for daily wear, and a specialized moisturizer for the evening.
By applying at night, you’re giving the product a chance to work without interference from other products while you sleep.
2. Blow Dryer
If you blow-dry your hair on a daily basis, you should definitely look into buying a quality dryer. They’ll cut your dry time in half, which will prevent heat damage in the long run. Our favorites include T3, Solano, Twin Turbo, Eva NYC and Drybar.
3. Texture Spray
The dry texture spray from Oribe cannot be beat. We’ve searched high and low for a cheaper alternative, but we’ve sadly come back empty-handed every time. If you want sexy piece-y hair that’ll make you look like an A-list star, this is the stuff for you.
Foundation primer is a must if you want your makeup to last all day. If you can’t afford high-end foundation and powder, at least invest in a good primer. It’ll totally make up for it!
The primers from Laura Mercier are unbelievable and definitely worth the splurge.
If you go through perfumes and body sprays like no other, then you should consider investing in a high-quality fragrance. We’re totally obsessed with Bond no.9 for both the quality and the quirky packaging — a little goes a long way and the scent will stay with you for eight hours or more.
The price tag is steep, but if you use it daily, a bottle will easily last you two years or more.
6. Lather-free Shampoo
If you have dry, frizzy, curly or damaged hair, the lather in your shampoo could be causing your locks some harm. Instead, consider using the cleansing conditioner from Wen. Cheaper knock-offs do exist, but they don’t work as well. We’ve tried almost all of them!
Note: Give yourself a full month to get used to this product. It’s way different than what you’re used to, and you most likely won’t like it at first. You’ll start to notice the difference in your hair texture during week two.
Most drugstores don’t have options when it comes to serums, so splurging is pretty much a must. You can find serums ranging from $15-$100+. If you’re new to the world of serums, we recommend checking out the many options from Kiehl’s.
Do you have a favorite beauty splurge? Let us know in the comments below!
*We partnered with Biotherm for this post.
My 5 Beauty Obsessions: Kellee Khalil of Lover.ly
Posted 2 months ago by Amanda Raye
What does the beauty routine of a busy CEO look like?
Meet Kellee Khalil, the founder and CEO of Lover.ly, your one-stop-shop for wedding planning. Kellee started Lover.ly in 2012 and she hasn’t looked back since.
The life of an entrepreneur is extremely hectic and often stressful, but that never stops pink lipstick loving Kellee from taking some time for herself in the a.m.
Kellee shared her top five beauty obsessions below:
1. Mac Lipstick in “Candy Yum-Yum”
I am a pink lipstick connoisseur and Mac’s Candy Yum Yum is my favorite. It’s so Loverly!
2. Fresh Sugar Lip Scrub
Living in NYC can be brutal on the lips. This scrub is perfect for chapped lip rejuvenation.
3. Nars “Orgasm” Blush Stick
This blush stick is so versatile, I wear it everyday, and it matches my signature lip color well!
4. Jouer Essential Matte Foundation
Jouer foundation gets me through my hectic day at the office and lasts through my dinners and events with investors.
5. Essie Nail Polish
A bottle of Essie polish can always be found in my make up bag. They have a great selection of wedding day colors that I like to wear!
If you love Kellee’s taste in makeup, follow her on Twitter!
*Photo courtesy of Leila Brewster Photography.