in DIY

DIY Agate Shadow Box


After strolling through the mall & checking the price tags of these beautiful pieces of art, I was inspired & depressed all at the same time. I knew I had to have these pieces in my living room, but I couldn’t bear spending $200 to do so. SO YOU GUESSED IT!! I made them myself.

You’ll need:

Agate Stones

Patterned background paper

Shadow box

Hot glue or gel poxy

You’ll want to choose your background paper, your stones & their placement. Once you have those decisions made, mark with pencil where the stones will lay. Next, you are going to want to cut the paper where you made your marks.

Simply because I have found that hot glue works better when gluing to texture rather than gluing to flat & smooth surfaces. Within the holes that you stenciled & cut – apply your hot glue. You can also scratch hot glue altogether, especially if the backing of your shadow box is smooth & use gel epoxy instead.

Then as quick as you can, before the glue dries, lay your stones on the glue in their place.

And that’s it! You’ve made your own beautiful and unique piece of art!

How easy & fun?!

There is a chance I have about three of these in my house now…

Thankfully, my husband couldn’t care less about decor.

Let me know if you try this DIY! I’d love to see what you come up with!!



Okay, so we made it through the first week of 2018 – so far, so good, right!? And like the rest of world, I’ve jumped on the “New Year, Better Me” bandwagon. A lot of our resolutions have to do with health, fitness, and overall wellbeing – all of which are attainable through better lifestyle choices. And for the last couple years, I’ve tried to stick to making working out and eating healthy a routine in my life. With that, I wanted to share with you a few tips that have helped me commit and stay motivated to working out.

  1. Set realistic goals
    When I initially started working out (again), I thought to myself, “I could totally make it to class 5x a week.” Uh, no – this didn’t happen. The truth was that I was basically sedentary when I decided to take control of my fitness routine, and what I really needed to do is evaluate my fitness level at the time, and set realistic goals. So after a week or two of not achieving the 5x a week goal, I decided for the next couple months I would make it a goal to get to class 2-3x a week and reevaluate. I did – and now I’ve doubled the appearances I make to the barre studio. Start with a small goal and build on it.
  2. Know thyself – group classes vs lone wolf
    Okay – this is actually important. I quickly found out that going to the gym and fending for myself was really counterproductive and not for me. I had no idea what I was doing with the machines or even had a proper routine and, as a result, it was really discouraging. I quickly found out that I’m very much a group class kinda gal through and through. This revelation was not a shock to anyone that knows me as I’m very much an extrovert. With that, my next thought on group classes will not come as a surprise to you: being surrounded by like-minded people help with my pursuing and achieving my goals. Plus there is an added bonus of forming friendships. This bring me to the next tip…
  3. Find your tribe
    The women I go to barre with motivate the hell out of me – we are all at different fitness levels, yet, we all inspire each other to work harder during class. It’s amazing. The best part of establishing relationships with the people I go to class with, is that we hold each other accountable. My barre babes and I ensure that we see each other at least 3x a week. It’s really hard to cancel class when you know your favorite people will be in class; but also, having someone to make funny faces with or make comments about how a certain move may kill us  makes class even better.
  4. Stick to a schedule
    This helps establish a routine. Whether scheduling gym time in your calendar or signing up for class beforehand, committing to a designated time will make you accountable and are likely less to cancel. Also, why wouldn’t schedule an extra hour of “me time” in your daily schedule?
  5. Location, location, location!
    I know what you’re thinking, “what the heck are you talking about, Kim?” Pick a gym or fitness studio that is either walkable or a less than 20 minute drive from your home. Anything further than that will only give you opportunities to make excuses. Don’t set yourself up for failure from the get-go.
  6. Sign a contract
    I don’t know about you, but if I’m paying for it, I’m going to milk it for all it’s worth. You don’t have to sign up for a whole year, but consider a three month contract (baby steps). This is ample time for you to establish a routine and actually see changes in your body (and mind – endorphins make you happy, people)!
  7. Treat yourself
    When I first started, I made mini goals; and when I reached that goal, I would treat myself. This would come in the form of a date night at my favorite restaurant or even a cute workout outfit. Honestly, I go for the latter more than anything else, because I noticed that a cute outfit makes me feel a little more confident. Cute outfits are just so motivating and empowering! If you feel strong and confident, that will definitely translate in your workout – making your workouts just as strong and confident. Here are a few of my favorite pieces from my favorite brands: Alo Yoga Moto Leggings (I own two pairs of these leggings – I’m OBSESSED!), Beyond Yoga Soft Spacedye Leggings (the SOFTEST leggings you will ever own in your life), and Zella Pace Tank.
  8. Take photos
    Okay, so you’re thinking this is cringe worthy, Kim. I get it. However, documenting how much your body changes within the first 12 weeks will seriously change your mindset. You’ll notice how your hard work is now translated into toned arms/legs and a flatter stomach. While it’s difficult to not compare yourself to others (stop doing this), these photos will allow you to compare yourself to yourself! Whenever you’re in a rut, you can reflect on these photos and see how far you’ve come.
  9. Focus on intangibles
    I just mentioned the physical changes you can see with the naked eye – but I found that the intangibles really motivated me to stick with my fitness routine. Working out really does rewire your brain. Admittedly, prior to establishing a workout routine, I felt blue – like all the time. It’s so crazy how just working out 3x a week really made me into a happier person. A couple other things I’ve noticed: I’m less tired when I wake up and my stress has reduced immensely. I know I said this before, but endorphins really do make you happy!
  10. Find healthy recipes you enjoy eating and making
    So part of committing to a fitness routine is also committing to a balanced, healthy diet. Don’t get me wrong, I indulge – maybe more than I should from time to time. But eating healthy was (and still is) the most difficult part for me. My initial thought for healthy foods meant, I’d be eating like a rabbit for the rest of my life – but that really isn’t the case. I’ve found a number of easy and delicious meals online that I currently keep on rotation. My favorite and go-to sites: A Cozy KitchenSkinnytasteTwo Peas and their Pod, and Honeysuckle Catering.

I hope you enjoyed these tips –

I would love to hear how you commit and stay motivated in your health and fitness journey!

in Beauty

Current Obsessions


2017 was an interesting year to say the least, but we survived! And to start off 2018, we wanted to share a few things we are currently obsessed with – you’ll notice that we are REALLY into skin care.

Kate's Obsessions

  1. Zo Skin Health ‘Offects’ Exfoliating Polish
    With my problematic & dry skin comes dead skin cells. Thankfully, there are a few estheticians from THE pearl modern spa that never let me down when I face a skin hurdle (pun intended). These lovely ladies told me that this product would do all the things and they were SO right. Pesky dead skin (as gross as it sounds), you can say goodbye to with this miracle scrub. You’ll notice a glow after one use. I have also noticed a significantly lower amount of breakouts since using the polish as it surely does prevent clogged pores. You’ll soon learn that if I ever happen to have a couple bucks in my pocket, it is spent at the spa.
  2. Nyakio Tamanu Firming Face Balm
    I might not be able to pronounce it correctly, but I sure do love it! SUCH a great nighttime moisturizer, especially in the winter. This balm is so luxurious, I’ve honestly never used a balm that comes close to this. I have problematic as well as dry skin, so learning about this product & trying it out has been a saving grace. Waking up in the morning with skin that feels moisturized & plump is SUCH a treat, this balm really does the damn thing!
  3. Mally Beauty Flawless Finish Transforming Effect Foundation
    On days when I don’t feel like doing my make up for real for real, this is what I turn to. It is such a lightweight foundation with really good coverage. I throw on some bronzer once I apply this foundation and I’m ready to go! Love the little compact it comes in too! An extra mirror on deck is always a plus.
  4. EcoBrow Defining Wax
    Like my hair, my brows are thin – thin and light. And after trying everything from pencils to powders on my brows, I was introduced to W A X & it changed the game. My eyebrows are the one thing I do every single day, otherwise, I resemble a potato so I am quite grateful for this little jar!
  5. Gold Bio-Collagen Mask
    One of my favorite bloggers, @CandyStubbs shared these masks and raved about seeing results after one use… right then & there (in my bed, on my phone), I knew I had to try them. After the first use, I actually received compliments on my skin – which doesn’t happen for me. So I now use these sheet masks every Thursday or Friday night to get ready for the weekend & I make sure not to run out, which is easy because they are available on Amazon Prime! My skin becomes so radiant after one use & it actually lasts for days, not hours. These. Are. A. Must.
Kim's Obsessions


  1. Jan Marini Physical Protectant
    There is one thing I NEVER leave the house without – SUNSCREEN! While I’m sure that some of you exclusively wear sunscreen during the summer months, the reality is that you should wear sunscreen everyday of the year. Let’s face it (pun intended), the sun can cause major damage – essentially accelerating the aging process of our skin. YES – this mean wrinkles and spots! No thank you. I’ve gone through a number of sunscreens and my current favorite has been the Jan Marini Physical Protectant. The formula allows the product to evenly smooth over the skin. The sunscreen also has a slight tint, so it ever-so-slightly evens your skin tone – not enough to consider it as any coverage if you have any blemishes though! Major highlights that are super important to me: it offers broad spectrum coverage, has an SPF of 45 (my minimum is SPF 30), and it’s water resistant (perfect for when I’m out and about on a hot day or even just working out).
  2. Briogeo Scalp Revival Charcoal + Biotin Dry Shampoo 
    I LIVE FOR DRY SHAMPOO. My obsession with dry shampoo is real and I have been known to hoard five bottles at a pop; for a world without dry shampoo is my one true nightmare. Okay, so maybe I’m being dramatic – but really, whoever invented this stuff is a freakin’ genius. I go 3-4 days without washing my hair – for a number of reasons: daily washing strips my hair of natural oils, my hair color fades faster, and dirty hair is so much better/easier to style! I have a number of favorites, but the Briogeo Scalp Revival Charcoal + Biotin Dry Shampoo has quickly moved to the top of my list! This stuff not only smells amazing, BUT IT WORKS… WELL! I workout nearly everyday, and this dry shampoo really does absorbs the excess dirt and oil that accumulates through the day. It’s a non-aerosol spray, and releases the perfect amount of dry shampoo per squeeze. Life changing tip: spray dry shampoo just before you sleep – it’ll absorb the oil through the night and your hair will look perfect the next day!
  3.  L’Oreal Voluminous Million Waterproof Mascara
    This mascara has been my tried and true for many years now. I’ve tried so many mascaras from drugstore to high end, and I keep running back to this baby. The L’Oreal Voluminous Million Waterproof mascara makes my super straight eyelashes look long and full, but more importantly holds the curl!! Because it’s waterproof – it doesn’t budge. Honestly, this is the best mascara I’ve tried – and for $8.99, you seriously can’t beat it.
  4. Drunk Elephant C-Firma Day Serum
    I was introduced to the Drunk Elephant brand late into 2016, and no sooner incorporated many of their products into my skincare routine. Like sunscreen, the C-Firma Day Serum is also a product I use on a daily basis. Drunk Elephant has created a product with exceptionally high quality ingredients including ascorbic acid, aka vitamin C. Vitamin C does a number of things, but the reason I love layering it with my sunscreen is because it enhances the effectiveness 4x! I’ve noticed a change in skin, in that my dark spots have faded and my complexion is much brighter. This does have a hefty price point, but I tend to purchase during the Sephora VIB sales to get a few bucks off. Each bottle lasts about 6 months – the bottle pumps out the perfect amount each time. Of course, there are many brands that offer the same concept (this just happens to be my favorite), but I really believe that you should give this a try – you’ll be so amazed with how amazing your skin will look and feel.
  5. Elizabeth and James A Little Bit of Nirvana Fragrance Collection
    The Olsen twins (yes, Mary Kate and Ashley) hit it out of the park with this fragrance collection. With every scent they release, I become more and more obsessed. Each scent is different, and smell amazing on their own, but L A Y E R E D!? The scent is just so next level and so addicting. The formulation of the fragrances ring in notes that can feel airy, bright, sexy, and even masculine. I purchased this smaller set – but I definitely plan on owning the entire full size collection. If you’re in the market for a new fragrance – give this brand a try – you’re bound to find a scent that you’ll LOVE!

Have you tried any of our current obsessions? Tell us what you think! We’d also L O V E to know what you’re currently obsessed with – shoot us a note or comment below!

Kim & Kate
in Style

Real vs. Dupe: Winter Edition


Mules, booties, boots, loafers… it’s costly, and downright difficult to keep up in the fashion world. Alas, here I am to help decision-making a little easier on you (and on your wallet).

I’ve always been a Sorel fan; they make great boots, they do…and I’ve been eyeing a pair of the Joan of Arctic Wedge Genuine Shearling boots, BUT the price tag of $270 made me a bit unsure. People I know have made such a big deal about them – and I really wanted to understand – so I bought them. A couple days later I was on Target’s website, and found a similar looking pair of boots – Marisol Lace Up Wedge Hiker Boots – the price point was obviously lower, so naturally, I added to cart.

Once I had both in my possession, I compared the two – the heel height, the comfort, the fabric & guess what? I like the Target pair better. I think the $37.99 price tag had a large part in my decision. BUT comfort wise? The Target boots won this battle. The Sorel’s were tight on my wide feet; and thick socks were just not an option. Another faux pas of the Sorel’s? The plush shearling lining. It’s only at the top, not throughout the boot. Which, for $270, I totally thought the lining would run throughout (making it okay not to wear thick socks), unfortunately this isn’t the case. A positive about the Sorel’s? The leather. It blew away the Target boots. I mean, the Sorel’s are SO. FREAKING. SOFT. However, soft leather isn’t enough to convince me to spend almost $300.

Final thoughts: the Marisol Lace Up Wedge Hiker Boots win this round of Real Vs Dupe – Winter Edition. I still love Sorel’s, but keeping budget in mind, coupled with my need for comfort and being on trend – I just had to go with the Target dupe.

Joan of Arctic Wedge Genuine Shearling boots vs Marisol Lace Up Wedge Hiker Boots

Want to know all of our favorite dupes of the season? Check them out below!


The rundown of the real: Sorel Joan of Arc Wedge Genuine Shearling Bootie $270, Sam Edelman Hazel Pointy Toe Pump $119.95, Faren Bootie $59.96 & Delroy Slide Mule $199.95

Total: $649.86

The rundown of the dupes: Marisol Lace Up Wedge Hiker Boots $37.99, JENN D’Orsay Pump $55.97, Lucile Laser Cut Booties $34.99 & Journee Collection Keely Almond Toe Slip On Mules $34.99

Total: $163.94

So now it’s your turn! What are your favorite shoe trends this season? Do you love dupes, like me? Or do you only wear the real deal? We would l o v e to know – share in the comments below!


in Beauty, Gift Guides, Style

FabFitFun Review


Subscription Boxes – you can get one for A N Y T H I N G these days! From food to pets to beauty – you name it, you can get a box delivered to your doorstep as frequently as every week.

The subscription box I am most excited to share with you all is the FabFitFun Box! FabFitFun is a box of curated FULL SIZE products that is delivered to your doorstep each season. Individually, each box cost $49.99; however, you have the option to become an annual “select” member which will save you a few bucks and give you early access to personalize your box. The whole year membership cost $179.99.

And let me tell you… it is SO WORTH IT. Each box is limited edition and contains $200+ in retail value. This box has been one of the best decisions I’ve ever made – I experience Christmas four extra times a year! I’ve been a FabFitFun box subscriber since 2015 (all boxes purchased with my own money), and this box just gets better and better! Ever since subscribing I’ve discovered new brands that span beauty, wellness, style, and fitness. A few brands that I have come to love: trèStiQue beauty, Klorane Dry Shampoo, Karuna Sheet Masks, D.L. & Co. Candles, Osea Natural Skin Care, and Gorjana Jewelry. Some may be familiar to you, others not – but you need to check these brands out. I honestly would have never stumbled upon these brands if it weren’t for FabFitFun.

Before I go any further – I have a link that will get you $10 OFF your first box! CLICK HERE. Merry Christmas to Y O U!

My FabFitFun Winter Box arrived earlier last week – and I was so excited, I met the USPS guy at the end of my driveway.

Each season, an artist is chosen to design the box that houses all of the products – they are all so pretty. I don’t know why, but it pains me to get rid of the box. I try to find a reason to repurpose – but alas, it just ends up making our pile of recyclables a little prettier.

Each box comes with a magazine revealing the retail value of each product, offers ideas on how to use or style each item, and fun facts from each brand founder/creator. This box happens to feature a mug designed by Ayesha Curry – hence why she’s on the cover!

This is the mug I received… ain’t it cute!? I’m a sucker for mugs – I find myself buying a new one every time I’m at Target. Whoops. Ayesha Curry designed three oversized mugs for this season’s box – my obvious use for this mug will be for my daily cup o’ joe. But I do fancy a nice big cup of hot water infused with lemon, an excessive amount of ginger, and honey. What’s your go to warm beverage? Comment below!

Retail Value: $18

The next item my eyes were immediately drawn to was the BB Dakota Poncho. I had the option to choose the color of the poncho since I’m a “select” member – I chose “mulberry.” I figured since most of the clothes in my closet match the color of my soul, black, I could use to add a little more color. Uhm, I love this. It can be styled as is with a loose fit or you can cinch in the waist with a cute belt (like this one) – it’s also super cute with thigh high boots!

* Retail Value: $70

Up next: Ahava Mineral Hand Cream with Dead Sea water. With this frosty Maryland weather, my skin has been drier than ever, and one cannot have too many hand cream tubes lying around. I’ve been applying this lotion after every hand wash and I find it to be super hydrating. The thing is, I find the scent to be a bit strong. Don’t get me wrong, it smells good. But again, just a little too strong for my liking. So if you are sensitive to scents of any kind, I would just be wary.

Retail Value: $33

If you are into essential oils, you N E E D this next product. I happen to be on the essential oil bandwagon, and the thisworks Deep Sleep Pillow Spray  is so soothing. I’m not sure if this helps me fall asleep any faster or deeper – I’m notoriously an awful sleeper – but the scent puts me in full relaxation mode. It smells like a spa in a bottle, and when I shut my eyes I imagine the sound of the ocean and all of my worries disappear for just a moment.

Retail Value: $29 (2.5 fl oz)

Pointe Studio Aloe Infused Cozy Socks are my jam. In fact, any cozy socks are my jam. My feet are forever in frozen mode and these socks keep my feet  nice and warm. These are also so essential after a Pure Barre workout (BEST WORKOUT EVER) – since they’re infused with aloe, I feel like my feet are continually nourished and moisturized.

Retail Value: $19

The Doucce Freematic Eyeshadow Pro Palette is a stunner. Let’s talk packaging for a second – it is so chic. The eyeshadows are housed in a shiny black container with a HUGE mirror – a must for palettes, in my opinion. I was able to choose between the smokey palette or the nude palette – I went with the nude since I am a complete neophyte when it comes to eyeshadow application. Also, everyday colors are less intimidating and more forgiving. The best part of the palette? Each eyeshadow well is magnetic – meaning you can remove each one allowing you to replace or swap out colors for a more customized palette!

Retail Value: $70

I love accessorizing; to be specific, I love jewelry – so much so, I’m a Stella & Dot Stylist on the side just so I can spread the love. Anyway, I digress. I recently heard about the brand, 8 Other Reasons, so when I saw that FabFitFun was offering a necklace through this box, I was so excited! I was able to choose between rose gold or silver, and I obviously chose the rose gold. I love this piece – it’s a choker/lariat combination made up of micro ball chains and comes pre-layered. It also comes with a 4 inch extender. I like to style this dainty necklace with a v-neck t-shirt or sweater.

Retail Value: $58

Remember that I mentioned I’m a T E R R I B L E sleeper? This next item made me jump for joy. I LIVE for eye masks. The Grace & Stella Anti Wrinkle and Energizing Eye Masks feel so nice and are a definite pick-me-up. I’ve only used them once, so I can’t speak to the anti-wrinkle claim just yet, but the eye masks definitely left my under eye area feeling hydrated and refreshed.

Retail Value: $16 (8 pack)

I saved the best for last. And let me tell you, I was SO SHOCKED this ended up in the box. This product has a cult following and is so good, it’s garnered a couple of awards. I’m talking about the Kate Somerville ExfoliKate Intensive Exfoliating Treatment. This product was originally created for Kate Somerville’s celebrity clients, and couldn’t be attained by us common folk – so thank goodness she saw the light and realized she could make a killing off this product alone. All you need is two minutes of your life and you will G L O W, baby. Your skin will feel like a baby’s bottom, and you will feel like a million bucks. It’s been a while since I’ve owned a tube of this treatment, but I’ve already incorporated this into my skincare routine – twice a week!

Retail Value: $75 (1.7 fl oz)

Have you been keeping tally of each product? My box has a total value of a whopping $388! SO WORTH IT, RIGHT? Even if something like this isn’t up your alley, I’m sure you know someone in your life who is into most things that fall into the “lifestyle” category. This is the perfect gift – gift them one box or the whole year, I’m sure the recipient will be elated. This is also the perfect present for that someone in your life who is notoriously difficult to shop for – win/win for you and her!

Again, I have a $10 off coupon on your first box – so take advantage!

Did you like this review? I would love your feedback! Also, feel free to suggest products you’ve been eyeing, but haven’t quite found the reason to click the purchase button – we will totally review for you.

As always, thanks for reading!






*Photo taken by My Subscription Addiction

in DIY

DIY Hula Hoop Wreath


We’ve all seen those huge beautiful wreaths in department stores & shops like Anthro this time of year. If you haven’t… get out of the house! Wreaths are actually pretty freakin’ pricey! Who knew?!

Don’t you worry! Because my cheap ass is here to show you how to make a BEAUTIFUL HUGE WREATH for $10-$15 & about an hour of your time. 🙂 Yay!

One thing I LOVE about this project is that there are SO many possibilities – it all depends on your style. The classic hula hoop wreath (yeah, that’s a thing) is usually spray painted; but my goal here is to not look like I have a hula hoop hanging on my wall (as if I were an 8 year old) but actually make this wreath a beautiful conversation piece. So I added some texture – chunky yarn, to be exact. This is the second project unrelated to knitting that I’ve used chunky yarn – and it’s safe to say that I’m a huge fan.

So first things first! Go to your handy dandy dollar store & grab a hula hoop! I was lucky enough that good ol’ dollar general had ‘mini’ hula hoops & not a full size ones. My ceilings are 9 feet tall, so that would just look all sorts of ridiculous. Next? Stop into Michael’s & grab your floral wire, chunky yarn, metallic spray paint (not a must) & greenery. DON’T FORGET YOUR MICHAEL’S COUPON! If you don’t own a box cutter, you might wanna grab one of those too – it makes slicing the hula hoop a lot easier. Don’t worry, you only have to make one slice.

So once you are ready to rumble, grab your box cutter & hula hoop. Be careful, please. Make about a two inch slash on your hula hoop where you want to tuck in your chunky yarn. Then shake shake shake shake those pellets out. And begin wrapping. THIS IS SO HELPFUL. Instead of just making a knot that will slide all over, the slice in the hula hoop will hold that yarn nice and tight. See below!

Now it’s time for the most time consuming part of this project! Wrap your chunky yarn around and around and around your hula hoop! This did take me about 15 minutes –  you need to make sure the yarn is full & tight, so you don’t see the obnoxious colors of the hula hoop coming through. If you have time on your hands, or have a child who naps longer than 40 minutes, you could just spray paint the hula hoop before you wrap the yarn around to avoid the chance of seeing the original hula hoop color altogether, but I ain’t got that kinda luxury. #momlife

Once you are done with the wrapping of the yarn, you should be quite impressed! I know I was! 

Now it is time to get creative! I know, the hardest part for some. I freakin’ love eucalyptus. L O V E the smell.  L O V E the color. L O V E the look. So I was immediately drawn to it at Michael’s for this project (and 4 others). I began by choosing which branches of euc were aesthetically pleasing to me & went from there. Once I chose two, I put them on the wreath how I imagined they should be. TIP: When using floral wire, wrap around the branches (see photo). Floral wire can be difficult to work with if you aren’t familiar with it. 

Let’s just say that you may be able to see some of your floral wire… well this is just another great thing about using yarn! You can wrap the yarn around those spots & honestly, it turns out kinda amazing.

Like so…..

It’s hard to tell in the bright morning light, but the chunky yarn I used is actually a grey, I wanted to be able to use it for all seasons. But that is something you can absolutely play with, along with the materials, you add onto the wreath. I actually bought some white daisies, gold metallic floral accents & a love sign.. not knowing which direction I would take with this wreath. Once I saw the eucalyptus part done though, my heart felt full (hahahaha SO dramatic). But in the sense of this project, this looked right to me!


I may end up adding in the gold accents but I’m just not sure! I want to see your wreaths! Be sure to tag us on Instagram or comment below if you make your own hula hoop wreath!

Thanks for reading!!!


Y’all – this brush is a total GAME CHANGER.

I’ve seen a few heated straightening brushes on the market, but I was never really intrigued. My initial reaction was, “ehh, gimmick – no thanks.” That is until a coworker came into the office one day, and was like, “Kim, you N E E D to try this – it’s amazing.” She didn’t have to say much more to pique my interest; I looked up the Amika Polished Perfection Straightening Brush on Sephora’s website, and found an overwhelming amount of stellar reviews. What I also found was a somewhat pricey sticker – the brush will set you back $120. The cost didn’t turn me off completely – I know quality hair tools tend to be on the pricier end – and let’s be honest, I’ve paid more for crappier products. For me, the brush wasn’t a priority, so I kind of just left it in my cart and walked away.

Fast forward a couple months, and the ever-so-popular Sephora VIB Rouge Sale comes along. You bet your little tush I clicked on that “Add to Cart” button. The discount was a plus for sure; however, my best friend really sealed the deal when she mentioned she purchased the brush and was so impressed with how her hair felt and looked after use!

So after that long narrative – I BOUGHT THE DAMN BRUSH* – and I’m so glad I did.

Before I get into how I use the brush, I want to share a bit more on the brush specs:

  • Double Negative Ion Technology – the maximum in negative ions resulting in shiny, smooth, frizz-free results with zero static. True.
  • Ceramic Bristles with Nylon Cool-Tips – emit far-infrared heat that instantly penetrates the cortex of the hair cuticle, heating from the inside out. The hair is heated evenly and in half the time of conventional heat, reducing the risk of damage. Mixed with a good heat protectant, I haven’t seen the damage in my hair increase.
  • LCD Digital Interface – precise setting and monitoring of temperature up to 450ºF, the most important element for getting consistent and effective results. The auto-shutoff feature means no power will be wasted when not in use. For me, being able to adjust the temperature was SO important. Not all hair is created equal, people! Some folks can handle the high heat, whereas my hair can only handle the lower temps – 450ºF would cause my hair to burn off! 
  • Temperature Lock – for uniform temperature control.
  • Ready And Able – an easy grip, 9 foot 360° swivel cord made of heat-proof, up to 450ºF, fabric and a professional hook makes use and storage simple.

A little about my hair: medium length, fine, thin, frizzy, and wavy. I wash my hair every 3-4 days and rely heavily on dry shampoo. I can’t be bothered with a fussy routine – the less time I spend on my hair, the better.

To use, I set my Amika Polished Perfection Straightening Brush to 370 degrees and divide my hair into two sections – top and bottom – and then smaller sections for even distribution of heat. Even though it’s a “brush,” I comb out each section with a wide tooth comb to ensure there are no snags. From there – I just go for it! I smooth over each section of hair slowly from root to end. Once I’m done with the top half of my hair, I flip my head over and brush through – I feel like this is the last opportunity to add more volume!

I’m able to smooth out my hair within 5-7 minutes, and the end result is A M A Z I N G. I have been so impressed with this brush – I can achieve the look of a blow out without the extra time and effort. But the BEST part is that my day three hair is just as smooth and voluminous as day one – I swear.

Ya see! I rarely used my flat iron because it left my hair exactly that – flat and lacked movement. Volume and movement is what we should go for, people! And I feel like the Amika really helps me achieve that.

Another thing to note is that the first time I used the brush, I was somewhat underwhelmed. I think the hype mixed with high expectations mixed with the first time ever using the brush – the result was nice, but not as amazing. It did take me a couple more times to really get on board. As you’ve read, I’m got on that damn train, honey!

If you’ve been eyeing the Amika Polished Perfection Straightening Brush, just add to cart – you won’t regret it.

*Purchased with my own money.
in Gift Guides

Holiday Gift Guide


It’s the most  W O N D E R F U L time of the year – and we want to help YOU with your holiday shopping! We’ve curated lists for the gals, guys, kids, and, of course, the furry family members in your life. H A P P Y SHOPPING!


For the Gals 2017
1. Cozy Cardi with POCKETS, $75 Leith just might be one of our favorite brands. They offer pieces for every occasion, but their cardigans and sweaters are just SO GOOD.
2. Diamond Initial Necklace, $298 For the MOST special woman in your life – this necklace is so dainty and B E A U T I F U L. You’d score some major brownie points with this one!
3 & 4. Marble Lounge Sweatshirt, $45 and Matching Joggers, $50 This might be the cutest lounge set we’ve ever laid our eyes on – a total must have for those Netflix & Chill kind of nights. PS matching shorts are also available!
5. Reversible Rose Gold Studs, $39 Reversible, you ask? Yes! Not feeling the pave crystals that day? Just flip them over and you’ve got a plain rose gold structural pyramid.
6. Faux Fur Pom Beanie, $44 This beanie comes with T W O detachable faux fur poms in ivory and warm grey. For the woman who loves to coordinate her accessories with her outfits – this one is for her!
7. aHead Headphones, $111 Not only are these at a lower price point than most of the wireless headphones out there – but the sound quality is amazing, the battery lasts for hours, and they are just SO stunning.
8. Leather Handbag, $240 R.Riveter – a brand we will forever love and support. Each handbag is crafted by military spouses here in the U.S. Perfect bag for a woman on the go!
For the Guys 2017
1. Duffel Bag, $85 How many of your husbands/boyfriends plan a guys’ weekend, pack the night before, only to find that the bags they own are too big or too small – and so they have to borrow yours? Yes, that weekender with the abstract print. Next year, you’ve got him covered. Herschel Supply Co. takes the trophy with their modern minimalism design and their ultra functional accessories.
2. Zip Front Jacket, $139 Classic Patagonia zip up – light weight and comfortable. Perfect to keep the man in your life warm with zero effort to keep things stylish! A definite W I N in our book!
3. The Time Teller, $73 To keep the gentleman in your life punctual. We know that folks are opting for smart watches lately, but we think a classic Nixon watch is necessary for more special occasions!
4. Mancrates, $20-$300 “Awesome gifts for men” is the Mancrates slogan. Awesome indeed – Mancrates offer curated boxes filled whatever your man is into – from sports to outdoors to booze. So if you’re having a difficult time choosing a gift – we think this will be a H I T!
5. Drone, $150 We’re likely adding to the never ending pile of gadgets the man in your life owns – but we think this gift is seriously SO COOL! It has a 1080P camera so images will be clear. This drone is perfect for beginners!
For the Kids 2017
1. Bandana Bibs, $16 The cutest drool bibs we ever did see! Not only will these bibs keep your kid’s stylish outfit drool free – but you can rest easy knowing that they are made of organic cotton.
2. Metallic Gold Deco Dandelion Blanket, $60 Look. Listen. We would like an adult version of this blanket because it is just so P R E T T Y! Aden + Anais is one of our favorite brands for baby bears, and this blanket is just an add to cart no brainer.
3. Playtime Pals Activity Chair, $129 Are you doing all the things, and need to keep your baby occupied? You need this activity chair from The Land of Nod. Plop your babe into the chair (keeping it on the floor, duh) and take that shower you haven’t taken in three days. Not only a gift for your child, but also for yourself. You’re welcome.
4. Stacking Toy, $27 We L O V E toys that spark curiosity and inspire creativity, and Fat Brain Toys take the cake. These tobbles will strengthen your child’s fine motor skills, coordination, and visual spatial skills.
5. Crochet Pom Pom Hat, $15 Fall is here, Winter is coming – and you need to keep the adorable baby of yours warm. We think this Bella Simone NYC beanie will do the trick, all the while keeping your baby super stylish.
6. Cuddle + Kind Doll, $48-$68 We saved the best present for last! Not only will your purchase bring joy to your own child, but you will also help fight childhood hunger. ONE DOLL = TEN MEALS. Isn’t that the most amazing thing you’ve heard? These dolls are of the highest quality and handmade by artisans in Peru – heirloom quality! These Cuddle + Kind dolls are not only good for the holidays, but amazing for shower gifts and birthday presents. Just sayin’.
For the Fur Baby 2017
1. Pet Portrait, $120-$200 Do you love your dog as much as we love ours? Then you or your dog loving family member or friend N E E D a whole wall dedicated to the little fur baby that romps around the house. Pop Your Pup artists turns your favorite photo of your pup into pop art. How fun is that? BTW – they also have shirts! So rocking a portrait of your pup all day, in public, CAN ACTUALLY HAPPEN!
2. Rescued Wine Candle, $28  A gift with purpose. The most obvious one is to keep your house smelling lovely – like your favorite wine, in fact! The folks at Rescued Wine repurpose wine bottles by hand pouring candles AND give back to animal rescue groups from portions of every sale. The gift that keeps on giving – we like it, and so will you!
3. Dog Treat Jar, $18 We love these Waggo dog treat jars because they add a pop of color to your countertop, but also keep Fido’s treats FRESH. A happy dog means…well, we don’t know because sass will always be given! #truestory We can’t with our own dogs 97.5% of the time.
4. Teepee, $40 THIS IS SO CUTE and we think it will look just adorable in your home. Think about how happy your pup would be to have his own space. If you don’t have a fur baby or a dog loving friend – we know they make teepees for human babies… or your grown self can snag one to relive childhood memories. PS A purchase of this teepee means supporting  a small business.
5. Dogeared Pouch, $24 “Be the person your dog thinks you are…” This canvas pouch is not only super handy – we can fit our everyday make up bits – but the pouch also provides a gentle reminder to the best person E V E R. Jury is still out on what Pogi, Waffles, and Stella (our dogs) think about us – but we can only hope good things!
6. Dog Toy Bin, $16 To keep all of the dog toys organized! This cute bin from the ED Ellen DeGeneres line come in a variety of sizes and colors.


We hope our Holiday Gift Guide gives you some great ideas for the most important people and pups in your life.
We’d love to hear what you think!
in DIY

DIY: World Market Antique Frame


Safe to say that my master bedroom got pushed to the end of the list when my husband and I bought our home well over a year ago. The main living spaces are furnished & I thought maybe it’s time to show these bedroom walls some love (pun intended ;)). So, to World Market I went. I was immediately drawn to their large antique frames but for how simple they were, I couldn’t justify spending $17 a pop. I’m cheap sometimes, okay, I know.

Moral of the story? I made them my-damn-self.

Not only is this project ridiculously cheap, but so easy. The best part? Each frame cost about $1 to make. How you ask? The biggest junk drawer known to man – the dollar store. Their 11×14 simple black frames sell for $1 so I swiped a few right up! Then just grabbed some duct tape & rope and wham! New bedroom decor is here to stay.


I hope you found this hack to be worth seeing and doing! Maybe there will be more dollar store hacks to come! Oh God… that just sounds like I’m on the path to hoarders anonymous.

If hanging above a bed, crib or common lounge area please be sure to use reinforcements & not just duct tape when hanging. Do remember this is a quick & cheap fix.

in Beauty, Style

You Gotta Know!


The Holidays are among us! We want to share with you the BEST Black Friday & Cyber Monday deals so you can check off that little (by that, we mean huge) Christmas shopping list!

Our fave beauty brands have a ton going on.

Catrice Cosmetics

On Black Friday, they are offering any F I V E products for just $20 AND free shipping. This sale just SCREAMS stocking stuffers!

On Cyber Monday? Spin their virtual wheel to receive a surprise deal – can be anything from free shipping to 50% off your purchase!

Anastasia Beverly Hills

This is one we will be setting our alarms for!

On Cyber Monday, select glow kits will be FORTY PERCENT off at Ulta! Marking them down from $40 to just $24.

Bobbi Brown

It’s kind of embarrassing how excited we are for this one!

On Cyber Monday, Nordstrom is going to be off the chain (YUP, we went there) for Bobbi Brown fans. You’ll be able to snag Bobbi Brown’s Long Wear Foundation for just $35, usually it is $50!  Another Bobbi Brown fave that will be part of Nordy’s Cyber Monday? Their Long Wear Gel Liner – marked down from $28 to just $17.50!


Not only is Nordys doing it big with Bobbi Brown on Cyber Monday, but you’ll also see some major MAC deals! MAC’s Brush Kit – the Anniversary Look in a Box Brush Kit – will be available (online only) for just $37.12. Marked down from $49.50! Can we say STEAL?!

Sweaty Betty

I don’t know if it’s just me being cheap or what, BUT Sweaty Betty is a brand that I regularly stalk on Insta, always tell myself I’m going to buy those bum-sculpting leggings, enter every single giveaway they host and then … I don’t buy a damn thing. But hey! They are pricey! I know, I know, they are worth it, right? I mean they have to be. So when I heard Sweaty Betty is doing a 25% off SITEWIDE sale starting the day before Thanksgiving – ALL I COULD THINK IS THAT I CAN FINALLY SIT AT THE COOL TABLE.


7 months PP & Spanx are still in my regular rotation (and by regular, I mean every single day that I leave the house). Spanx is one of those brands that do not necessarily mark down their staple pieces on the reg, BUT for Black Friday they are offering 20% off E V E R Y T H I N G (plus free shipping)! I’m jumping for joy – well, squatting for joy. In hopes that one day, I won’t have to wear Spanx ever again – a girl can dream.

Hope these deals help you pinch those pennies!