Taunting in Teal

After purchasing Nars’ Larger Than Life Long-Wear eyeliner in Abbey Road – something I mentioned in my last post – I went a little crazy with the turquoise and teal. I adore the oranges, yellows, and reds of fall, but who doesn’t love a contrast? That being said, I was digging through my closet this morning came across a blouse I purchased this summer. It was an unusual buy; I’m not usually bold enough to wear bright, sheer button-downs. But I took a chance on this $12.99 bargain from T.J. Maxx, and I’ll admit that I’m a little in love with how it works.

Such a pleasant surprise!

I wore the shirt tucked into my favorite pair of Paige premiums (another bargain purchase: $18 on eBay in a 24/00). I accented with a pair of (clearance) gold, 1/2-inch heeled t-straps from Talbots and a statement necklace from Francesca’s. Unfortunately, they only sell the necklace in stores, but I found this similar one on their website.

It was a low-maintenance day for makeup. Obviously, the new eyeliner went on, followed by a few finger-swipes of Urban Decay eyeshadow in “Toasted” and two coats of Sheer Cover Extra-Length Mascara. Even though this is almost my daily routine and shouldn’t be this exciting, please excuse these few moments of meltdown:

“Toasted” is a perfectly-pigmented, all-day, flattering-on-everyone shadow. It’s the perfect, everyday bronze that can be dressed up or down. And if all-day is long enough for you, wear it with Urban Decay’s raved-about primer. I love it, beauty gurus love it, and you’ll love it. Seriously.

photo courtesy of redbookmag.com

Similarly, this mascara goes everywhere with me. I have naturally long lashes and prefer subtle makeup for daytime wear. Sheer Cover provides that subtlety while still adding just enough volume and definition. It comes in a weird black-brown mix, but it works for every shadow and every eye color. If you’re looking for real thickness, add a few coats. But if you’re looking for classic, feminine simplicity…start here.

Finally, let me wrap things up by raving about the Life is Good Music Festival that took place last weekend at Prowse Farm in Canton, MA. Headliners included Sara Bareilles, Michael Franti, and Dave Matthews with Tim Reynolds. Due to a family wedding, I was only able to go to the latter. But that was enough. I’ve never experienced an environment of such shared joy. One-hundred percent of the profits and fundraising from Life Is Good go went the Life is Good Playmakers, helping kids overcome poverty, violence, and illness.

We were THIS close to Dave and Tim!

A heads up for the next two weeks, I am obscenely busy. Midterms like you wouldn’t believe. I’ll post again ASAP, but I apologize in advance if it ends up being longer than normal. Thanks for reading!

Fall Favorites

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As we settle into our autumn academic routine, we find ourselves falling back into old patterns: using (or not using) a planner, catching up with old friends, and – my personal favorite – breaking out the cool-weather clothes.

If you know me at all, you know that I have a slight sweater and shoe problem. I own dozens of both; I never get sick of them. No matter how many of each I purchase, I can always find another that I have to buy. Usually I stick with J.Crew, Ann Taylor and Urban Outfitters. However, this summer, I had the pleasure of working with actress and fiber-arts designer Karen Allen on this piece about her gallery and store in Great Barrington, MA. She was well-spoken, witty, graceful, and oh-so-sweet. Needless to say, I immediately went home and watched Raiders of the Lost Ark and started my online shopping.

I’m not going to lie – the prices aren’t cheap. Her 100% cashmere gloves start at $75, hats at $105, gaitors at $150, scarves at $165, and sweaters at $495. Regardless, I will emphasize that they are divine. If you’re looking for the perfect autumn staple and can afford the splurge, this is where to start. My personal favorite? The Autumn Rhapsody Pullover. Soft, comfortable, and versatile.

For those looking in a lower price range (like me), try this adorable color-block sweater that I purchased this weekend during Loft’s 40% off event. The brown, pink, and orange-red hues will match any foliage, and the shape boasts comfort without the boxiness of a too-baggy fit. I also purchased a necklace and sunglasses to match.

Here’s the full outfit from today!

I wrapped up the afternoon with a trip to the NARS counter in Nordstrom. Though I walked in without the intention of a purchase, I walked out with their “Larger Than Life” long-wear eyeliner in Abbey Road. Now, I know you’re thinking: “Julie, you have two different color eyes, and neither of them are fit for teal eyeliner.” But I promise that this is an investment I will never regret. The color is  bright without bordering aggressive, and it applies even smoother than my favorite Make Up For Ever pencil (purchase always in “shimmering plum”). My brown-and-green eyes have never looked bigger or better!

NARS Longer Than Life in Abbey Road (left) and Make Up For Ever in Shimmering Plum (right)

Finally, I’ve fallen in love with Lollia hand lotions. Which is huge.

I’ve always detested these kinds of products for their gross residue and synthesized smell, so I was hesitant when I received this “Petite Treat” as a birthday gift. My hands are also in terrible condition (both in terms of dryness and my nervous habit of picking my cuticles), so I was pleasantly surprised – no, thrilled – when I opened the tube to find a sweet-smelling, non-greasy serum that immediately worked wonders.

The scent of my particular tube is officially called “Calm” – designed to smell of hyacinth and honey – and is made with shea butter, macadamia nut avocado oil. I used to only apply as-needed, but now I find myself craving it’s buttery texture and elegant fragrance on my skin. Even the packaging makes me smile! For someone who hates being cold, I’m awfully excited for the seasonal chill that will justify using even more of this stuff, finishing the bottle, and having an excuse to try a new one.

Photo courtesy of http://www.lollialife.com

On that note, I’m off to start my spanish homework and prepare for my shift at the library. Keep your eyes peeled for another post this week, including my top five(?) fall staple items. (Hint: there will almost definitely be more than five).

In the words of the always-fabulous Roséline, “I hope it’s beautiful where you are…”

Must-Haves for Collegiate Interns

After day 4 on the job, I’ve come up with a brief list of must-haves for any collegiate intern. Specifically, these must-haves are all tote-friend to make your internship experience a tiny bit easier.

1. A Day-to-Day Planner/Notebook:

My planner is my best friend. Seriously. I can keep track of assignments, hours, miscellaneous notes (email addresses, etc.), and anything else I need throughout each day or each week. My favorite is this Lilly Pulitzer Agenda. It comes complete with tabs, sections for notes and contacts, a hardcover, and an elastic bookmark.

2. Laptop:

I know, I know, lugging around your laptop can be a pain. But your boss will appreciate that you can bring it to meetings, in addition to the fact that it makes your work space portable. Since the computers in this office tend to be a tad temperamental, I can’t even express to you how much easier it has made my life to have my Macbook around when I need the internet. If you’re worried about scratches or damage from traveling, pick up one of these durable and inexpensive covers or cases!

3. Lip Stain:

After a long day at the office, lip stick comes off after eating, talking, sweating, and licking envelopes. The same goes for lip gloss, and we all know we could do without the stickiness. But I will absolutely swear by Tarte’s Lipsurgence Lip Tint and Fresh’s Sugar Tinted Lip Treatment (with SPF 15). Personally, I prefer the Tarte stain in Joy, and the Sugar tint in Sugar Rosé. They’re long-lasting, moisturizing, and the colors are perfect for the summer!

4. Comfortable, Stylish Flats:

Now when I say flats, I don’t necessarily mean flats. I just mean any kind of everyday shoe you can wear without pain or blisters. Personally, I’m a big fan of J.Crew’s ballet flats (you can find them in a beautiful turquoise on sale here). Or if you’re looking for something a little less pricey, try these fabulous DV knockoffs from Target. They come in four fabulous colors for a fraction of the price. I purchased two pairs last week, in mint and black, and I’m in love. My best recommendation for convenience and style? Cityslips. They’re foldable, adorable, affordable, and the case turns into a tote.

5. Hand Sanitizer

It sounds silly, but think about how many surfaces you touch throughout the day. Especially as an intern who’s responsible for delivering paperwork, making copies, answering phones, organizing closets, what have you, it’s reassuring to know that you’re avoiding all the bacteria that comes with it. Not to mention that during the colder months, you’re much less likely to contract that cold going around the office. Pick up a couple of these Bath & Body Works PocketBacs. They’re transportation-friendly, available in dozens of scents, and constantly on a “5 for $5” sale.

If you have any questions, recommendations for additions to the list, or simply any comments, feel free to share!

I’ll be posting the list of DOs and DO NOTs later this week. Until then…