OOTD 6: Polka Dots and Pleats

In fashion, I love the juxtaposition of sweet versus edgy. That’s why I pulled together this look, mixing sweet, girly classics like preppy collars, polka dots, and pink frills with edgy components.polka dots and pleats outfit of the day style trialsThe shirt is also a little sheer, and I played that up by pairing a black tank under the nude top to add to the edgy factor.

outfit of the day style trials polka dots and pleats  The pleated schoolgirl skirt breaks the rules because of the high hemline and “leatherette” material.

outfit of the day pleather skirt style trialsI’ve also been obsessed with mixing prints lately, and love pairing these pointy-toe snakeskin printed shoes from C. Wonder in unexpected ways. I think they add a style statement to the look making it less “safe” by mixing it with the polka dots and pleats, and the neutral color definitely helps. Together, it all works!

outfit of the day wiw c wonder snakeskin ballet flats

Polka dot blouse: Marshalls (old), similar 1, similar 2, similar 3 | Pleatherette or Vegan Leather Skirt: Forever 21 (old), similar 1, similar 2|  Shoes – Snakeskin Ballet Flats: C. Wonder (now only available with a heel) or ballet flats similar 1, similar 2, Headband: Candies from Kohl’s, similar 1similar 2, similar 3

What style combos or prints do you like to pair together?


Tips for Taking the Best License Photo, School Photo, or Passport Photo

I had planned on doing this post back when I got married and found I had to take another passport and license photo. I completely forgot about it until my recently married friend mentioned that she too just got her new license, and sans makeup or brushed hair found herself frantically taking her photo. She laughed about making the lady take her picture multiple times, but I can definitely relate as I did that too! Hey, it’s something you’ll have to live with for awhile, so why not treat it as a photoshoot? Here are a few quick tips on how to take the best license photo, school photo, or passport photo….or at least avoid looking like this.

Worst License Photo

Photo Source: mnbikingvikings.blogspot.com

Cstophecklist DONT’S for the Best License Photo, School Photo, or Passport Photo:

  1. Don’t wear crazy large patterns or stripes. They don’t tend to photograph well.
  2. Don’t wear something too trendy, meaning clothes, makeup, and hairstyle. You can have a passport for up to 10 years, and as we learned from the past, you may get sick of crimped hair and blue eyeshadow!
  3. Don’t wear anything too low cut or too high neck. Sometimes the photos are really close up and if you’re wearing something with a high neck (let’s just stay away from turtlenecks in general, k?), you’ll look like you literally have no neck. You also don’t want the “ladies” popping out….unless that’s your plan on getting out of a traffic ticket! Ha!
  4. Don’t wear statement jewelry. Sure, that ginormous chunky rhinestone necklace may be “adorbs,” but when thinking about these photos classy and understated is best. Simple stud earrings are usually my choice.
  5. Don’t wear something without sleeves. Trust me, even the tiniest of girls may not photograph as well if wearing spaghetti straps, sleeveless, and definitely not a tube top (you’ll look naked!). This mainly goes back to how the photo is cropped, so it’s more flattering if you have sleeves…even short sleeves.
Style Trials how to take a good license photo

Example of my license photo following the tips below!

checkmarkChecklist DO’S for the Best License Photo, School Photo, or Passport Photo:

  1.  Do think about what kind of top you’re wearing. Some photos you won’t see it, others you will (I’ve had license photos where you can and can’t see it, and my passport and school photos you can see it). I usually go with a solid color, either bright but not neon bright (think cherry red) or neutral. I think a color like navy or cherry red makes the picture less boring, but you can’t go wrong with neutral.
  2. Do put on makeup. And when you put it on, make sure you actually put more makeup on than you normally would in real life. From my days of professional dance teams and modeling, I learned that eyeliner, lots of mascara (or false eyelashes if you’re going to the extreme with stage makeup – not necessary for this), more blush than you normally would, and some kind of color on your lips is best. The lighting on these pics will not be great, and this will prevent you from looking washed out.
  3. Do wear your hair like you normally would. Don’t do some crazy style or go to the extra effort for beauty pageant hair, you still want to look like your everyday self. Remember, people will be looking at your i.d. to identify YOU. I usually just wear mine straight and down and pull it in front on both sides. If you pull it back or wear it up, you may end up looking like you have no hair.
  4. Do ask to retake the picture if you see it and really just can’t live with it. Of course do this at your digression as it may not make sense if you have a line behind you, but I purposely get these pictures done at times that I know it will not be as busy. It’s not a weird request, just don’t ask them to do it more than 2 or 3 times max.
  5. Do SMILE! Now is not the time to throw the camera your best pouty face. Keep your eyes open and bright, and smile big. 🙂

Do you have any other Do’s or Dont’s to add to this list, or a funny experience you had when taking one of these photos? Let me know in a comment below!


How to do a High Top Knot Bun like Nicole Richie

Bun hairstyles are still going strong. And what’s not to love? They can save you from rainy days, bad beach hair, or simply when you just don’t feel like styling washing your hair. From my tutorial on how to do a messy bun or a sleek doughnut  bun, you saw that there’s different types of buns that range from glam to boho chic. This tutorial is focusing on the high, top knot bun that Nicole Richie is famous for. Plus, it’s SUPER easy and takes less than 2 minutes to do!

Style Trials Nicole Richie top knot bun with bangs

Photo Credit: whowhatwhere.com

Style Trials Nicole Richie High Top Knot Bun Hairstyle

Photo Credit: youreatulle.blogspot.com

You’ll see a top knot is supposed to be a tighter styled bun, taller, and right on top of your head. Doesn’t Nicole Richie’s top knot look adorable? Kinda makes me want bangs.

Because it’s a simple hairstyle, it really lets smokey eyes, a bright lip, or a killer outfit take the stage. For me, I also found that this is the easiest and quickest bun if you have fine or thin hair. It actually looks best because with a top knot, you want the base of the bun to be as small as possible, which pushes up height on the bun. Checkout my 2 minute tutorial below:

How to do a High Top Knot Bun like Nicole Richie

 You don’t technically HAVE to have bobby pins, so if you need a quick fix and only have a hair-tie, this would still work.

Style Trials high top knot bun hair tutorial

Have you tried a top knot or any of these other kinds of bun hairstyles? Leave me a comment!


Outfit of the Day 4: Aztec, Arrows and Booties

The Aztec print is still going strong, especially during this cold season. I like it best when mixed in heavy knits, and fell in love with this aztec and arrow knitted long cardigan from my new favorite shopping site, Tobi. Aztec Print Cardigan Tobi and beyond the rack aztec bauble necklace

I love the mix of neon in the sweater, and it paired perfect with one of my favorite necklaces from Beyond the Rack. The triangle stones follow the same lines you find in aztec or arrow prints.

Style Trials Outift of the Day - Aztec Print Cardigan Tobi and CWonder Booties OOTD

Beauty blogger 101 – put makeup on BEFORE the pic! (oops)

I paired the look with a high top knot bun hairstyle, wrapped a cute gold hair tie around the base, and simple makeup (when I eventually put it on, lol). I kept the jewelry and rest of the outfit simple since the necklace is a statement piece, the cardigan has a bold print, and there are gold buckles on the shoes.

Style Trials OOTD CWonder Black Booties Shoes with WedgeSpeaking of shoes, these are my new favorite booties for Winter! And they are SOOO comfortable! They come in black and brown from C. Wonder.

*Style Trials Quick Tip* Signup for emails from Tobi and get a promo code emailed to you for 50% off sitewide! Their prices are really great when you use the discount (comparable to Forever 21), new styles are always 30% off for a period of time, and sometimes they have free shipping. Plus, they ALWAYS have free returns, so it makes shopping online really easy!

Have you embraced the aztec and arrow prints this season?


Fall Favorites: Emi-Jay Hair Ties and Butter LONDON Nails

It’s October, and these are a few of my new Fall favorites. Emi-Jay Hair Ties and butter LONDON nail polish! Never heard of them? Here’s the deets…

Style Trials Emi Jay Hair Ties and Butter London Nail PolishEmi-Jay was founded by two teenage girls, Emily and Julianne, who also give back 20% of their profits to charities. Love that. You’ve probably seen these cool hair products everywhere by now (celebrities also LOVE them), but maybe didn’t quite catch what they were. These girls came up with new, fun hair ties and headbands that don’t pull hair and won’t crease it either. Why didn’t I think of that?!? GENIUS! They come in a variety of colors/prints, and can even be worn as bracelets! Each band is hand-dyed and unique, and you can even get accessories such as crystal beads or bows to add to your bands. Checkout a few examples:

promo-celebsdec2012

Celebs such as Reese Witherspoon, Kourtney Kardashian, Jennifer Anistan, and Sarah Jessica Parker love their Emi-Jays!
Photo Credit: stephanie-nguyen.blogspot.com

I like the Emi Jay holiday ornament gift sets which would be a great gift for someone, or maybe Santa could add it to your stocking. 🙂 That would be a great starter for basic solids, and you get 8 for $19.99.

cart-ORNBRIGHT-lg

I especially think the layered look is really cool, especially if you have one that’s printed and a coordinating solid or glitter tie to go along.

Emi-Jay® Solid Color Hair Ties Online Store | Emi-Jay.com® layering emi jay hair ties

Example of Emi Jay layered hair ties. Emi-Jay.com

My next favorite find is butter LONDON nail polish. I found this in a boutique store in Florida on Anna Maria Island, but they also sell it at places like Sephora. It’s a heavily pigmented, high-fashion nail lacquer that was created backstage at fashion week for top designers. It’s also formulated without Parabens, Sulfates, Synthetic Fragrances, Petrochemicals, Phthalates, GMOs, Triclosans, and is a “three-free” company. Meaning their products are free of formaldehyde, toluene, and DBP – basically not as bad for your nails as others. 🙂

I was really needing a good base coat, and although this one was pricey ($18), it seems to work well. It prevents my nails from yellowing, smooths and makes for a good nail polish base that last long. It also dries quickly, and the nude color is pretty that it could even be worn alone for really natural looking nails.

I was also on the prowl for a Fall color that could transition into Winter. Checkout all the nail lacquer colors…so many to choose from! Bronze nails are definitely in right now, so I landed on the Scuppered Nail Lacquer ($15).

Scuppered_0002

I liked the pretty glitter that was more of a shimmery glitter (not chunky), and that it’s an opaque color. I hate when I buy glittery nail polish and it’s so transparent that I have to put on 5 coats to get an actual color! That was not the case with this, which took a normal 2 coats. I also like how it has faint pink and gold flecks, so it kind of changes color in different light angles. It’s great for holiday as well, and I’ve been wearing it straight for 3 weeks and still not sick of it.

Here’s a collaboration of my October Fall favorites.

style trials butter london Glitter Nail Lacquer Scuppered

Have you tried these products or will you? What cool new things have you found for Fall?


Friday Freebie! L’Occitane Repairing Shampoo and Conditioner

This cool deal is featuring a FREE 50ML shampoo and conditioner duo from L’Occitane ($10 value). For all you Orlando followers, there’s a L’Occitane store in the Mall of Millenia, or you can use this boutique locator to find one near you. This deal is only available in the U.S.

If you haven’t heard of the brand L’OCCITANE en Provence from the South of France, they’re a high-end, natural beauty company with fun soaps, candles, and hair/skincare lines. I haven’t personally tried them yet (although I’ve been paying a lot more attention to the brand lately and itching to test them out), but I just signed up for the deal and can’t wait to give it a shot. If it’s free, why not?!

Style Trials L_OCCITANE en Provence - USA Summer Hair Care Giveaway

Just go to L’Occitane on Facebook, “Like” them if you haven’t already, and enter your info here. If you’re on a mobile phone, you may need to try this link instead. Then you’ll be emailed a form a few days later, and you can take it to the store for your free shampoo/conditioner. Best part? NO PURCHASE NECESSARY!

You only have 10 more days to sign up for the deal, and it’s only while supplies last. So get on it and let me know what you think! Also, let me know if you’ve tried any of their other products.


How to do a Ponytail with a Twist!

This cool hairstyle tutorial is inspired by the Fendi runway show during New York Fashion week earlier this year. I LOVED the model’s twisted ponytail hairstyle! It would work on long or medium length hair (short hair, you can definitely do a variation of this or add in clip-in extensions), straight or curly. You can also take these tips and create new hairstyle variations.

Fendi ponytail twists.
Photo credits: http://www.jcinstitute.com

I spotted the ‘do while reading my Glamour magazine and thought, “What a creative way to make a ponytail more interesting and modern!” Something I definitely wanted to attempt myself, and it looks awesome! In my video, I go through step-by-step instructions on how to achieve a similar ponytail twisted hairstyle. My version is easy for anyone to do on their own hair, so give it a try! I also mention little tips and tricks throughout (especially helpful if you have layers), so make sure to watch the whole thing and let me know what you think!

How to do the Fendi Runway Ponytail Twist Hairstyle

 

I love braids and twisting hair for Fall, so it’s great for the season (or really anytime of the year). I also love how this hairstyle works with a range of styles, from boho to sleek and modern. For extra style flair, try incorporating some fun hair accessories like this!

 

Copper Feather Metal Headband
Copper Feather Metal Headband

Hippie Flower Braid Hair Wrap

Hippie Flower Braid Hair Wrap

All Tied Up Hair Clip


All Tied Up Hair Clip

Vote for Vintage Hair Clips
Vote for Vintage Hair Clips

Here’s some pics of my “after shots.”

What do you think of the ponytail twists? Will you give it a try?

And if you haven’t yet, make sure to subscribe to Style Trials so you don’t miss a thing! 🙂


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