Vacation from a Vacation

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Last month, Mike and I finished up a month-long sabbatical in the Caribbean. At the very end, we planned a 4 day Miami trip to ease back into real life. We stayed at Casa Faena, the ideal spot for a long weekend. It’s right on Collins Ave, in the heart of the beautiful Faena district, and I can’t recommend this little gem more! It’s a sister property to the swanky Faena Hotel, so staying at Casa gives you privileges to use their pool, gym, beach chairs, and spa while enjoying a smaller, boutique hotel vibe. Inspired by 1900s Spain, the decor is beautiful and welcoming, a perfect place to relax. Every time we passed through the lobby, I had to snap a pic. It was such a wonderful vacation from a vacation and I look forward to staying there again soon!

MY BEST LUXURY FINDS

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MY BEST LUXURY FINDS

 

Lately, I’ve had the best luck. I absolutely love a good treasure hunt, so my mom and I routinely visit a few local consignment stores. I’ve found some incredible pieces that will probably remain in my collection forever. If you’re from the Madison/Middleton area, I highly suggest you visit Simply Savvy, Collector’s Corner, and Passementerie. Those are the places I’ve found most of the items I’m talking about below! So, without further ado, here are my most coveted luxury consignment finds…

Lady Dior Handbag – $1,100

Finding this near pristine, large Lady Dior was a thrill. It was in the back of a dusty, locked cabinet. According to the tag, it had been consigned for a while, apparently unnoticed. My mom offered cash and surprised me with it. It’s from 2005 and in beautiful condition, no scuffs in the black lambskin or scratches on the shiny silver hardware. I’m almost scared to use it, I know the first little “blemish” will break my heart. I sometimes think about selling it (because a handbag probably shouldn’t elicit such an emotional response), but I’ve always loved the Lady Dior. It’s such an iconic bag and I still can’t believe I have it in my collection.

Chanel Flats – $150

My mom spotted these flats during a rather difficult time in my life and they were a fantastic pick-me-up. We had recently put down our 16 year old miniature dachshund, Clara, and joked she sent these my way (edit: is this weird? oh well). For this reason, these black and tan beauts will always be special. I mean, finding Chanel is enough of a day maker, but especially a pair of their famous ballerinas in the right size. They came with the box and dust-bags and everything which was an added bonus.

Gucci Scarf – $3

When I found this scarf and unfurled it to reveal “G U C C I,” I was ecstatic. When I saw the price, I basically blacked out. Kidding. Well, maybe not. Upon inspecting the label, edges, etc, I realized it was marked a mere $3. There’s nothing like a good deal y’all and this one was the best. I love a good piece of silk, especially tied on a bag. This gorgeous nautical scarf had no snags or stains and has been well worth the price 😉

Dior Saddle Clutch – $60

I started obsessively buying vintage Dior items in the iconic trotter print a couple years ago. One of my fave Youtubers, Mel Soldera, inspired me. I got this little pouch off Poshmark for about $60. I recently saw the same thing listed for $1,300+ by What Goes Around Comes Around on Shopbop. As Dior continues to roll out new items in their classic print,  the price will continue to go up on vintage items. Look at me, making money on my investments. Jokes aside, this is a lovely nineties gem that I typically use as a catchall in larger handbags.

Hermès “La Parade” Scarf – $295

My boyfriend recently gifted me with this vintage scarf after I had surgery. It’s a rare print, only made in 1966. The condition is so lovely, I imagine it neatly folded in the dresser drawer of a fancy grandma, unused. It has such bright, beautiful colors. I really want to frame it and make it the centerpiece of a room one day.

Do you have any amazing consignment finds?! I’d love to hear what they are below!

Emily

RECENT BEAUTY FAVES

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For the past few months, these products have been my everyday essentials. If I could choose only five makeup items from my collection, it would be these five. Seriously. They are all fantastic products that I will continue to purchase, so I figured I’d share my recommendations!

Lipstick: I’ve been obsessed with Tom Ford Spanish Pink for some time now. To me, it’s the perfect pinky nude color – great for everyday. It feels incredibly creamy on the lips and has great staying power. In the grand scheme of lipsticks, TF is pricy, but nothing else quite compares. I always find myself reaching for this shade.

Lipliner: This lipliner came in an infamous #KylieLipkit. Though the liquid lipstick is a great product (a tad drying like any liquid lip), I love this lipliner, which you can now buy individually. It’s super creamy, pigmented, and does. not. budge. Along with the aforementioned TF Spanish Pink, I wear Koko K lipliner on a daily basis. The specific color combo is perfect and I find that the respective formulas play well together.

Mascara: As someone not blessed with long, lush, natural lashes, I was always kind of let down by mascaras. My lashes never looked like the ads (duh, photoshop) and never gave me that movie-star look (duh, falsies). Though Chanel Le Volume isn’t photoshop or falsies, it’s pretty close. It lengthens while adding volume and manages to coat every single baby lash in the blackest black. It also doesn’t flake or smudge. Definitely my holy grail mascara.

Highlighter: A couple months ago, I was in the market for a new highlighter. Several beauty bloggers I watch on Youtube had raved about the Diorskin Nude Air Luminizer, so I checked it out for myself. Y’all. This product is everything. It gives the most stunning glow that blends into the skin seamlessly without bringing attention to any texture. You can brush on a little for a natural look or build it up to a blinding highlight. I have it in 002 Pink Glow, but there are three other shades to suit your skin tone.

Brow Gel: I love a good, strong, Cara Delevingne brow, but good Lord I won’t spend another minute sketching away at them. Benefit Gimme Brow is a tinted gel with little fibers that build volume. It keeps brow hairs in place while totally defining them. I’m pretty happy with my natural brow shape, so this product is ideal for me. I can just swipe it on and go.

Do you have any recent beauty faves? I’d love to hear them!

Emily

MASON PEARSON: WORTH IT?

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Mason Pearson Popular Brush (even comes with a cute little brush to clean the big one)

In a word: yes. I have really thick, fine, long hair and brushing it can be a nightmare. A couple weeks ago, I folded and purchased a Mason Pearson hairbrush. I’d been looking to make the investment for years and I’m so thrilled I finally did. The boar bristles are the ideal medium for evenly distributing natural oils throughout your hair, thereby improving hair health, smoothing, and adding shine. I must say, my hair has never been shinier, or softer. It also detangles like nobody’s business and feels so comfortable on the scalp. I have the Popular model, which is a large, combination (nylon/boar) bristle brush. Find the right model for your hair type here! This is definitely an investment, $100+ for a brush is…aggressive, I know. For me, it’s about cost-per-use. I literally take pleasure in brushing my hair now, whereas I used to avoid the task whenever possible. The initial sticker shock is easy to justify when’s it’s something I’ll use daily for years! Plus, it looks so chic sitting on the vanity 😉

Emily

TO DI FOR BAKING

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Aren’t they perfect? They taste just as wonderful. To Di For, named for owner Diana Matthews, is a new bakery serving up delectable, gourmet cupcakes to the Madison area. When I say gourmet, I mean flavors such as raspberry Nutella swirl with champagne icing. Yeah, they aren’t messing around, y’all. If you have an event, holiday (hey Valentine’s Day), or just a craving, To Di For cupcakes are sure to please. Also, they ship seasonal granolas and GF/paleo cookies, so if you’re not local to Madison, you can still treat yourself. Visit their website here!

Emily

BOLD SHOULDER

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Click to Shop!

I’m seriously loving all things off-the-shoulder right now. It’s an almost unexpected way to show a little skin, especially as we (slowly but surely) move to more appealing weather. The silhouette of a billowy top paired with pin-thin cigarette pants and heels is perfection. That said, there’s just something about a peasant top and cut-off shorts, too. Regardless, I think a statement-making top like any of the above can really carry an outfit. Lightly bronzed shoulders and highlighted clavicles are the only accessories you need. Most of these tops are available at Shopbop, and they’re having a huge sale right now! Get up to 25% off items that rarely go on sale. Sizes/styles are selling out, so be quick!

Emily

PRODUCT REVIEW: DIOR CRÈME DE ROSE

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Dior Crème de Rose 

Hi there! Happy Super Tuesday I guess? Do people say that? Anyway, wouldn’t ya know, the day after I talk about how awkward this time of year is, I wake up to snow. I guess it just proves my point. March is weird y’all. Today, I want to do a little product review of Dior Crème de Rose lip balm. While perusing the various and sundry lip enhancing products that Dior has to offer, I bought this thinking it was a lip plumper. I mean the package reads “Smoothing and Plumping,” so I was like “Ok, here’s $30,” because I’m such a practical person, of course. When I didn’t exactly get the Kylie Jenner treatment (but I will when my #kylielipkit comes because I’m nuts and bought one of those too muahaha), I actually did some research, read some reviews, and learned the emphasis is on “smoothing.” This product is meant to nourish and soothe lips, you know, like a typical lip balm. What sets Crème de Rose apart is that it fills in fine lines, leaving lips smooth and full. Though it doesn’t produce the effects of getting shot up with collagen, my lips definitely appeared “plumped” in the sense that they were nourished and looked healthy. It is enriched with Damask Rose essential oil which is incredibly moisturizing and has anti-aging properties. I’ve found Crème de Rose to be a fantastic lipstick primer, especially for matte formulas, as it provides the perfect foundation. I also slather it on before bed for super-soft lips in the morning. So, even though this product didn’t do quite what I expected, I’m a convert. If you’re just in the market for a basic lip balm, you probably don’t need this. However, if you’re looking for a smoothing lip primer that’s also restorative, moisturizing, and anti-aging, put this on your list (and lips too lol)!

Emily

GET INTO THE SPRING OF THINGS

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Spring is such a an awkward season, especially in Wisconsin. Lingering snow sits in sad little puddles while everything it once covered is still dead and soggy (do y’all think I have a gift for descriptive writing or nah?). Basically, it’s just a depressing time of year. I think my view of spring is definitely a glass-half-empty situation. This year, I’ve been brightening my outlook with retail therapy. Honestly, this is probably the most cost-effective version of therapy because copays ain’t free okay people? I digress. There really are so many fun and happy pieces/trends popping up this season. Here is my wish-list!

I hope y’all have a great Monday and Happy Leap Day!

Emily

HIS & HERS: VALENTINE’S DAY GIFT IDEAS

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In case you live under a rock and missed all the heart-shaped crap stores started pushing the day after Christmas…Valentine’s Day is right around the corner y’all. I’m sure a lot of people are rolling their eyes. Hallmark Holiday or not, I’ve always been a fan of Valentine’s Day. It’s the perfect excuse to spoil loved ones and yourself too! Even the bitter bitches celebrating “Single’s Awareness Day” need a little love. So whether shopping for your significant other or treating yourself this year, I pulled some gift ideas for both women and men.

Emily

NEW YEAR, NEW LIP

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Happy Monday! I hope everyone is having a wonderful 2016 so far! I took some time off from posting during the holidays, but I’m back with some great things planned for the blog this year. Today, I wanted to share two products I find myself reaching for more and more.

Bite Beauty Luminous Creme Lipstick Duo: My best friend gave me this little miracle for Christmas, and I’ve been wearing both bright, bold colors on repeat. It is the creamiest formula that delivers the biggest color pay-off (so rich!). Online, they’re sold out of most colors (I think this item was prob a big stocking stuffer), but at my Sephora, they still have a lot left, and rumor has it they’re now just $10 in-store! I am LIVING for Pomegranate, the pinkier tint of this duo. It’s still just as much of a statement-maker as the red (Palomino), but a bit easier to wear for day. If you can’t find a duo for you, here are the full-sized versions in the same formula.

Urban Decay Ultimate Ozone: This multi-purpose clear primer pencil is a game changer. It can be used to fill in fine lines/pores/whatever all over the face, but I use it for outlining my lips! It completely prevents lipstick from feathering or smudging, and keeps everything in place. You can even use it to “clean up” lipstick after applying, so if you have trouble coloring inside the lines, this is for you.

When I wear these products together, I have found lipliner becomes obsolete. So for around $30 total, you get two complete lip looks. That’s quite a deal considering just a lipstick can set you back like $36…why do I continue to hoard them then? Anyway! I definitely recommend these products, let me know if you’ve tried them!

Emily