This mani moment is courtesy of my new favorite pink. It’s like a glossy, fresh, frosted donut on my nails.
Essie Neo Whimsical for the win.
Between the Starbucks (which is a treat for me, not a daily thing, so I like to make a big deal about it & how happy it makes me) and this fresh mani, Friday is off to a good start. The little things, dolls.
Neo Whimsical is an opaque, cool, sweet light pink that’s darker than a blush and lighter than a medium pink. You may not realize it (because you’re likely not as nerdy about polish as me - count your blessings), but this shade of pink is extremely hard to come by.
Because of the pink undertones in my fair skin, I wear either a light blush pink or a dark, cool fuschia. Medium pink, bubblegum pink, mauve pink - completely blech on my hands. This might be a completely different scenario for you, but regardless, this pink.is.amazing. Flattering on any skin tone, it will pop without being too immature or obnoxious.
You’ll be surprised how many looks it blends into, even if you’re wearing another shade of pink. This polish color also looks killer with camel, ivory or gray. It’s super cute for spring & summer and pigmented enough to work on your toes, too.
I feel like I owe you a really solid post, considering I’ve been a bit less active lately. I blame the psychotic spring weather we’ve been having. From snow to heat advisories in a 10-day span, my head has been spinning and I’ve been in a fashion funk. Let’s just get to some consistency, please.
Now that a reliable warm season has arrived, we should chat about summer shopping. Even if you live in a climate that’s warm year-round, there are still summer-specific pieces you’re likely excited about. And if you’re anything like me, it’s easy to get caught up in the exhilaration of summer shopping. To be sure that you don’t go overboard or overspend on one piece, keep your eye on cheaper doppelgangers and implement some strategy into what you really must have.
Save vs. splurge
Summer, in my opinion, is not the best time to splurge. So a general guideline is to go for the save, every time. Warm weather pieces tend to be ultra-trendy and will last longer because they aren’t up against the harshness of a long & chilly fall/winter. Don’t you dare spend more on a pair of sandal wedges than you would on tall heel boots.
Here are a few trend pieces and proof that saving is easy this summer.
No disrespect to the higher-end pieces, but only go for a splurge if it’s exactly what you’re looking for (you’re certain nothing else will do), you need it for a special event (rehearsal dinner or another event where you’re the center of attention), and your summer wardrobe is already set. Otherwise, Savings City it is. Plus, no.one.will.know.
For a cool, spring evening downtown. Live music & drinks.
Pretty pink pleated maxi. Seasonally on-point. Bolstered by black; the color of classic, urban, un-fussiness. Tan booties for a bit of lift with tons of comfort for hours of standing & walking. Tresses are curled & easy-going.
This is a great alternative if you’re not in the mood for jeans, heels & a top and don’t want to be too dressy.
Short & sweet today, dolls. Perhaps I need more coffee…
Hope you all had a lovely weekend!
When you want an easy color that will shine with any look, but you’re just not in the mood for a nude or pale pink…
…go for a rose gold.
Mani of the Moment brought to you by Essie Penny Talk.
I would definitely consider this a neutral. Just like your jewelry, a metallic nail color will blend into any outfit you pair it with. It doesn’t really count as an additional color in your look. And depending on how dressed up you get, Penny Talk can go from glam to playful & cute.
The difference in usability between a rose gold versus a silver or gold nail color is actually quite vast. The rose gold won’t try to mimic your white or yellow gold jewelry; it’s not overly glitzy and it won’t make you feel like it’s New Year’s Eve. The rose tint makes all the difference.
So, if a fuchsia or red just seems like too much for the moment, but you want some mystique in your mani, slather on a coat of rose gold and be on your way.
The scene out my window is lacking variation or vibrancy. Gray skies, dull earth, rain/snow that blurs everything into a chill shroud. While gray is one of my favorite colors, that’s not the point. I have spent months (and then a few more months) appreciating the sharp, dark branches, hugged with plush snow; a quiet, soft landscape of monochrome and muted tones. I love that sh*t, don’t get me wrong. But, enough is enough. I’m overdue for a soiree of color palettes. The design seeds below and their accompanying looks are a welcome escape and a sight of things to come. Sometimes, creating a look that starts with a specific set of colors is the best way to satisfy your fashion soul. Fun colors, warm weather outfits. Let’s do it.
It seems my role as a wedding guest is feast (last year) or famine (this year). Instead of a wedding guest series, this is all you get!
A lovely wedding that narrowly escaped the spring snowstorms that had been beating us senseless, like a slip of paper under the door. Thankfully, that meant we could all go along with our planned spring attire.
This dress was the perfect coverage & color balance. The bright, peachy pink is a warm nod to the season, while the long sleeve, shift cut keeps it classy and appropriate for a wedding (or even the office!). The mod 60s are all over the SS13 ready-to-wear looks, particularly shift dresses. Get ready for shift dresses to be way in for the spring & summer. Feel no remorse stocking up - they are insanely versatile.
I chose nude and gold accessories to keep it light and warm, with the focus on the dress color. I bolstered the ensemble down with a dark, dusty rose lip, so my blonde hair and fair complexion didn’t get totally lost in the light look.
You could take a bright dress like this and make it a night look with a camel blazer or faux leather jacket, dark nails, black wedges, a black clutch and a giant cocktail ring.
Convert this pink frock into an office look with neutral flats, minimal jewelry (maybe a long, simple necklace and studs), a sleek chignon and gray or taupe nails. You could also throw a gray or beige blazer over the dress to tone down the impact of color.
Mmm, the possibilities.
While there may not be another wedding guest series of posts this year, there is sure to be plenty of fashion challenges to tackle and style strategies to implement.
It wouldn’t have been a good weekend without some good vino. And a chic, pale polish.
OPI Bubble Bath
Bubble Bath is my all-time favorite, go-to, must-have pale polish for ultimate class and sophistication. It’s understated without being boring; it’s feminine, versatile, and pretty. This OPI shade is a light blush pink that really looks more like a nude on my hands because I have very fair skin with pink undertones. It goes from sheer to opaque in 3 coats, and has a very creamy, soft finish that looks great with high-gloss topcoat.
This color is truly an all-seasons pick. Perfectly delicate for spring, clean & refreshing in the summer (and a great balance with bright looks), chic & polished with tailored looks in the fall, and a soft balance to rich, dark looks in the winter.
As I described in the nail polish essentials post, your perfect shade of nude or pale pink may not be the same as mine, but every lady has one. Consider the undertones and shade of your skin and do a bit of experimenting. Some beauty supply stores will be nice enough to let you test a few shades or you can purchase mini packs of Essie or OPI (Amazon has a wide variety for slightly cheaper than stores).
If you don’t wear nail polish regularly or can’t figure out what your favorite colors are for your particular style set, start with a pale pink. In the nail polish world, a blush color is considered a neutral. It’s really easy to commit to this shade because it’s such a chameleon and isn’t too bright or trendy. It might just be your gateway drug to the gorgeous world of nail color.
A few thoughts on being a victim of trends, namely, how to prevent it.
It can be really overwhelming to see your favorite stores overloaded with new trends, things you don’t own, feel like you should be wearing, etc. So let’s chat about how to stay in control and pick trends that really flatter you & reflect your personality, whilst preventing yourself from crumbling under the pressure of trends.
There are plenty of trends that I enjoy, but haven’t participated in: Peter pan collars, neon skinny jeans, denim jackets & vests, canvas slip-ons, high-low dresses & skirts. These are trends I react positively to, but they don’t necessarily fit my natural style and probably won’t last that long. I have to constantly resist picking up these pieces.
It’s all about reminding yourself that you can’t have everything and you really don’t need to. Being fashionable is about rocking specific trends well; being stylish is about knowing which trends to rock.
The best trends to participate in are the ones that get you the most excited. Example: I love lace. Thank GOD lace is in. Now, I can wear it in new and exciting ways. When something becomes a trend, like lace, you’ll start seeing it everywhere, on everything - shoes, tanks, shorts, sweaters, the back of loose tees, etc. So, I’ll pick a few of those that don’t come off as totally silly to me, and go to town. Another example: Pastels, specifically pink and mint. I already love these colors; I loved them when I was a wee child in the 80s, so this modernized, chic take on this color scheme is a joyful experience for me. These colors also look great with my light coloring (This is important: If you love a color, but it looks bad on you, I’m sorry. Paint a bathroom that color or something, but don’t wear it.)
So, needless to say, I jumped on the trend as well. I have a few mint blouses, and a blush skirt and blazer. Thankfully, the pastel craze returned for a second spring/summer round, so last year’s purchases are safe & sound. I still have almost every type of clothing & accessory in black and that’s not going to change just because other fun colors are in.
Keep to your staples; your classics; things that you know look good on you & stand the test of time.
In my case, I shouldn’t go all out, making lace and mint the centerpiece of my wardrobe. I work it in, stirring it into my other classic staples.
Resist. You may think something is cute, but that doesn’t mean you need it in every shape and form. It might be hard to figure out what trends are worth your money and how far to go when you love something, but you’ll get a feel for it with time.
Always be mindful in your purchases of trends. Ask yourself, ‘how does this fit with pieces i have that are classic?’ ‘Does this mix well into my personal style or is it a huge deviation?’ Nothing is more transparent and unfortunate than watching someone blindly follow trends with no sense of who they really are, style-wise, through it all.
Trends will come and go, but you and your personal style must stand the test of time.
Think about how 80s you’re willing to go without actually transporting yourself back there (because remember, there were many terrifying fashion choices in that era). How much aztec or boho will you implement before you start to look like a different person?
Trends help you evolve; try new things, test your limits, and define your style spectrum. It can be a hypnotically fun world to get lost in and there’s no need to feel bad about enjoying that, but like all things in life, don’t lose sight of your style self.
Along with the cheap & easy 1980s pop culture reference, I bring you nail color inspiration with my mani-of-the-moment.
OPI Ate Berries in the Canaries
A cool, rich, fuchsia berry that is strong enough for cold weather; feminine and cute enough for spring. It’s a good adult pink that is office appropriate, but still super fun for special occasions and warm weather. I think this was my effort to coax spring out of whatever cave it’s hiding in (still.snow.help.) but still look chic while I’m bundling up and wearing dark or neutral looks.
This OPI shade has a smooth, pigmented application. You will be totally good-to-go after two thin coats. I have it on my fingers and toes, but it would also be really cute as a pedi with a pale pink or nude mani in the summer.