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David Kind review

November 2, 2015
I finally got myself to the optometrist for the first time in over a year and I learned two things:

1) Wearing your contacts longer than their recommended apparently has HORRIBLE consequences
2) I have such bad astigmatism that no readily available (read: not custom) soft contact can correct to get my at 20/20.

So I purchased some contacts that can get me as close as they can, and I started looking into getting a new pair of glasses that are full strength.

I had heard of David Kind through my favorite blog right now, The Small Things Blog.  Kate is just so down to earth...with enviable hair

Anyway....I thought I'd give them a try.  The premise behind David Kind is that you select three frames and a stylist selects three frames.  They send you them (with no corrective lenses) and you have 6 days to test all the frames out and review them for purchase.  Of my 6, 2 were front runners and after wearing one pair all day over my contacts, it quickly became my favorite.

Here are some shots Rob took of the packaging (which is pretty slick) and me wearing the frames.





The first three frames below are the ones I selected for myself


I took a risk on this clear pair, but I thought it might look like I'm not wearing glasses.  I was wrong.

This pair was a pretty conservative style, but I picked it in a sage green to change it up.  Nothing was really wrong with this pair, just didn't love it compared to others.

 Favorite pair from my selections.  It's a tortoise shell color, which makes it less severe on my fair skin.

The next three frames are ones my stylist picked from some questions I answered and a photo I sent in.
 Wasn't loving these frames, the gradual change in color was something I couldn't get over.

 I felt like Noah Bennett from 'Heroes' wearing these frames.  I little too round also for my taste.

 These were my favorite from her selections, again a tortoise shell color with a more square frame.

I took a few selfies and posted on my facebook page to gauge people's opinions:
  The winner was the pair on the right, which is what I eventually choose.

Now the process includes shipping all the glasses back, with comments on each frame.  Sending my stylist a photo of me wearing the frame so they can gauge lens fit and emailing my prescription in so they can create my set!

Once I get it in I'll post some more pics on Facebook!

Sports Bra Review #2

September 19, 2015
Part #2 of my series on Sports Bras (see the 1st blog here) is more my opinion on fit, comfort, price and style.  I wanted Jessica's perspective because we could not be more different body types.  Pre-pregnancy I was a 36DD, and since then I've nursed for a full year and lost more than 40 lbs....so now I'm like a 34D.  So for me it's about keeping what I've got in place and not moving....plus looking stylish.

One thing I will say, is that no matter your size, the individual molded cup seems to be the new trend for any shape/size.  It gets rid of uni-boob and provides more stability.

My review is going to be a bit different from the last, I'll break down the styles I have (range in prices) and what I like/dislike and what exercised I use them for....so here we go.

Victoria's Secret Knockout & Incredible bra - I picked these up during the semi-annual sale, because I didn't want to pay $60 for a bra I might not love.  I love one and dislike the other.  Both bras have molded cups and comfortable straps.  The Knockout zips in the front and the Incredible is a pull over with a snap band in the back.  On days where I do heavy cardio (kickboxing) I reach for the Incredible first, I've found that over time the snap back allows me to correct for any 'give' the spandex has relaxed and still keep a tight band.  The Knockout is a perfectly find sports bra for days will less movement, weight lifting, walking, etc.  The band has relaxed and I've felt over time the support has decreased...plus I've reduced my natural band sizing...so I should probably size down.

Overall - Knockout - meh, Incredible - worth it (when on sale)

 
Knockout

 
Incredible



C9 Champion High Support Sports bra - Jesi and I agree on this one!  It's the bra I reach for the most, and will probably buy again.  The style is similar to the Incredible, with a pull over and snap band back.  I use this for kickboxing as well as running and never feel like I'm bouncing.

Overall - FABULOUS!




FILA Sport Core Essentials High Impact Sports Bra - I was looking for another affordable sports bra options, so I started scouring the internet and all my go to sites.  I found this one at Kohls.....which, who has ever paid full price at Kohls....no one....ever.  I used a 30% promo code I found online and ordered two colors in XL....when they came, they were a little large.  So I took them back to my local store for Larges, and they work awesome!  Sizing down give you a snug fit around the band which is what you need, and will allow for eventual give since there are no adjustable straps.  I have two colors, and I love that they have a wide range.  I pull for these on both cardio and weight training days, if my C9 isn't available.

Overall - Great for the money, but not my go to.


Those really cover my most worn sports bras....I have some from Old Navy that I use for weight training only days, and some really old ones I need to rotate out.  I've heard that sports bras shouldn't see a birthday...meaning you shouldn't have them for over a year.  While that's great in theory, if you've got a large bust and shelled out nearly $50 per bra for a set of 3-5, you don't really want to do that every year.  I recommend just keeping tabs on the band fit as it wears over time...and DON'T throw them in the dryer....AIR DRY!!!!

I've got a great fall fashion inspired posts coming, get excited!  Thanks for your continued support in reading, and I'll see you back here, in my closet!

Sports Bra Review #1 (Collabo w/ Girl.Fit.Boss)

July 30, 2015
First let me admit - I am a horrible blogger.  Hopefully now that we're FINALLY settling into the new house I can carve out time once a week to put some content together for you guys.  Thank you if you do read these!

Ok, moving on....

I've been asked a few times about some of my athletic wear.  Form meeting function.  I will never understand women I see who work out in regular bras.....there's can't be enough support going on in that $25 bra from Kohl's!

So, I wanted to give you, my readers, a full scope.  I know not every woman has my build, so my opinion might not be the best if you have a different build.  That's why I reached out to a woman who not only has a different build, but also helps people motivate and drive themselves to achieve their weight loss goals.  Jessica over at Girl.Fit.Boss and I have known each other since college and I trust her opinion in all things fitness.  And from what she has to say about sports bras, it looks like women of all shapes really all want the same thing....SUPPORT!

I'm going to break this topic into two blog posts....one from Jesi's persective and one from mine.  Here's what she has to say(pictures might not be exact style, but as close as I could find online):
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I'm going to throw it out there:  I'm a cheap ass when it comes to sports bras.  I don't want to wait or postpone my workouts because I don't have a clean sports bra to wear (and with the amount of sweat I generate, wearing one from the day before is just NASTY) or because I need to save up for a new one.  So what's a girl to do?  Head to Target!  These bras are holding me over as I save money and replace them one by one with higher quality, longer lasting bras (that of course, are more expensive).  

A word about my boobs:  I have none.  Well, almost none.  I wear a 34A.  I used to be a 36B for the longest time, then I started focusing on my health and fitness and unfortunately, the boobs are the first things to go!  *insert funeral march here*  A small price to pay for a healthy body!

So here's what I love (and sometimes hate) about my favorite bras:

     For a sports bra on the cheaper side of the spectrum, this is my go-to!  It's a pull over your head kind of bra with no clasps or ability to adjust the straps, but it fits perfectly snug without cutting off circulation.  It has molded cups, which I really like in all my bras.  I do a lot of high-impact exercise, like running and plyometric cardio, so this one is perfect for keeping the girls in place and minimizing bouncing.  When I workout, I want to make sure I'm not putting any unnecessary strain on the ligaments and soft tissue that hold my breasts up, so I may look even more flat chested than I already am with this bra, but at least I know I won't have to tuck my boobs into my belt when I'm 70.



     This is a good bra too for being on the cheaper side of the spectrum, but I probably won't be purchasing anymore of these.  These are also bras designed for high-impact exercise and pull over your head with no strap adjustments.  The downside of this bra are the removable cups.  I didn't look closely enough when I purchased all 4 of them at once to realize that they had removable cups, else I wouldn't have gotten them.  The cups come out in the wash or get all folded up inside the lining so I'm constantly having to put them back in and/or flatten them out.  When you're wearing the bra though, it's perfect!  The cups don't move around and it gives exactly the kind of support I need.  A plus is that this bra doesn't flatten my chest as much, but I still feel fully supported.




     This bra is my first REALLY NICE bra.  It's not cheap, but it's also not outlandishly expensive.  I bought it specifically for running and while I wear it for all forms of exercise, it's the only one I wear for a race!  The ONLY downside to this bra is that it doesn't have any padding or cups, but I'm willing to live without for the awesomeness that this bra brings.  The adjustable straps use velcro instead of metal adjusters, so it's nothing but soft comfort.  It has a clasp in the back to adjust as well, instead of having to pull it over your head and squeeze it over the girls.  It doesn't flatten me out, but it's snug enough to provide support for a high impact workout.  This bra has a higher neckline, so even when I was wearing it as a 36B, I didn't have any issue with a "boob muffin top" (you know what I'm talking about!).  When it's time to replace one of my cheaper bras, I will definitely be getting another one of these!


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I hope you all got some great info from Jesi!  I'll try to put my review out in a few days!

I've got a bunch of stuff swirling around in my head to get out to you guys (product reviews, fall capsule wardrobe planning, house progress!) but I just have to put it all down in a schedule :(

See you all later, back here in my closet!

Stitch Fix #3

July 3, 2015
Little blogging gets done when you're trying to move.  Hopefully once I feel settled, I'll get back into a more regular content update, I've got a few posts filling up my potential list :)

But, onto a happy day!  I got my latest Stitch Fix on Saturday, and.....I had mixed feelings.  With the move I've started this new found purge of all things unnecessary, which makes it hard to justify buying MORE things to wear...more on that as I talk about what was in this month's box.

I got 3 tops, a skirt, and because I requested more accessories, a purse.  With the hectic nature of a move and now having a toddler to look after, I didn't get to do as much styling on the items as I wanted.  Let's break it down:

This blue and white striped top had a really fun back detail, which I would have been all over if the whole thing had a little more structure.  I've come to know I like things to accentuate my curves, but not be overly risque.



Next, I got another skirt since my stylist liked how much I played up the last one.  But that's the problem, I'm not the person that needs multiple printed skirts in the same color palette.  Although, this skirt is a nice breezy fabric that has a little flip in it as you walk down stairs or twirl around.  If I didn't already have something that I felt covered this category, I'd be more interested.


This next top was a hard one to let go.  It's hard to tell in the photo, but it's a cream V-neck blouse with black like 'lightening bolts' all over it.  It was far and away my mother's favorite, but again, I already have 3 cream blouses and I'd just gotten rid of two others.  But, it did give me a reason to break out my black circle skirt for this styling.  I forget how much I love it, mainly because it's a little to short to wear to work (without tights).


Finally onto the piece I kept, this turquoise tank with white embroidery.  I like it's fit and color and I could see it easily transitioning from casual to work wear (with a blazer).  The only thing about this one was there was a smudge on the embroidery, so I'm looking at how to return it and get an exchange.  The purse was a nice mix up, but the style was too Boho for me.  I like more structure, which I told my stylist in this month's review. 




All in all, not a great box, but not bad.  I'm thinking I am going to re-adjust my price points as the fall comes around because I think I'll get more lux pieces that might call to me more.  If you're interested in seeing what I got in my other fixes click here or here

Stitch Fix #2!

May 1, 2015
It finally arrived!!  The con about doing every other month on Stitch Fix is that you have to wait!  I feel like I should make a disclaimer that the link above is affiliated and if you sign up and receive a fix, I'll get a $25 credit....just being transparent!

This month my stylist used a combination of my feedback and what I had recently been pinning to give me a little of everything!  Let's dive in!

I got this color blocked dress, which I love the graphic nature.  It also just happened to match some spring shoes I bought from Target two years ago!  However, this will be going back.  Mainly due to the fact that I have more dresses than I need and the price was a little high for me.  Below I styled is for a casual weekend, but it's also easily dressed for work.



Next item I got was this great flared, textured skirt.  I'd been pinning a lot of graphic full skirts recently, and while this isn't a duplicate, it gets me in the general area.  I'm keeping it mainly because I love the pattern and I don't own a skirt this cut yet.  Paired with a button down and heels for work, this is also great for weekends thrown with a basic cotton t-shirt and a jean jacket.



I ended up styling the final three pieces together, since they were a blazer, jeans and a blouse.  Since I loved the cut, fabric and fit of the blazer I got in my last fix, but not the color...they sent it to me in black!  I'd been meaning to update my black blazer anyway, so this is a keeper!  It's an investment piece, so I had to come up with some money....so I pulled items I hadn't worn in several seasons and got $98 for them...paying for 60+% of this blazer.  I also got the checked blouse, which has great shoulder lace detail and dark skinny denim.  I was too in love with the blouse to pass it up, plus at $34 it was the best deal in the whole fix.  I'm passing on the denim, since I already have dark skinnies.  However, this fabric felt like wearing pajama pants and had great stretch!




So that's my fix!  Three out of five pieces kept!  Have you gotten a fix yet?  Tell me about it!

Wedding Season Approaches!

April 20, 2015
Fresh out of college, it's not uncommon to have multiple weddings to attend in one year.  As time as gone on, everyone gets married off and those events become few and far between....they usually get replaced by baby showers :)

This year, Rob and I have the pleasure of attending three weddings, one was just this past weekend.  I don't really know when is ever the true 'start' to wedding season....March?....I guess it's just whenever is your first wedding to attend!  This wedding was an afternoon church ceremony with a longer break until the evening reception.  I decided to get a little crazy and do an outfit change since the evening event was a little more formal.  Here are the two outfits I wore.



I picked this dress up from Dress Barn about two years ago for another wedding.  Obviously florals are never a bad move in the spring.  The shoes are Valentino knock-offs I purchased from Apricot Lane's online boutique.

Here are two other great (current) options I would have grabbed from JCPenney: Fit and Flare Style, Sheath Style

My evening look was one I was super excited to wear.  I'd purchased this jumpsuit from Ann Taylor Loft a few months back for somewhere around $30 (sadly, I can't find it on the site anymore, but here's a great alternative and another!).  I normally have no reason to where this in a formal capacity.  I have dressed it down once(styling post on that hopefully coming soon).  Threw on a studded gold belt to play off the same shoes from the morning!


I did a pretty basic makeup look, only really pumping up the eye liner for the reception  But can I just get an 'Amen' for photo editing software???!!!

Also trying desperately to make it through this awkward crop grow out phase....I miss my long hair!


BTW, another Stitch Fix is coming end of next week!!!!!  So excited can't even contain my excitement!!

Tuesday Reviews-day

March 10, 2015
About a month ago I had a Jamberry Party to celebrate my 30th birthday.  I was looking online at all the amazing designs, then I thought why don't I have a party?  I'll get to introduce more people to these amazing nail wraps and get a discount on the designs I'm loving.

Now that it's been a few weeks and I've gone through a few sets, I wanted to give you my honest opinion on the wraps and their application process and subsequent wear.

First, what are Jamberry wraps?  They are similar to Sally Hansen and OPI style nail decals, but they are applied with heat and pressure.  The website says that a manicure can last 2 weeks and a pedicure can last 4+ weeks.  They have a variety of solid, designs and patterns that can be applied to bare nails, acrylics or gels, and even on top of polished nails!  Below are a few unique nail combinations I like.







The application process seems to have a lot of steps, but once you have them all down it flows pretty nicely.  This last set I applied in 20 minutes!

Items you'll need:
-Rubbing Alcohol
-Cuticle Pusher
-Tweezer
-Nail File
-Nail Scissors or Nail Clipper
-Heat Source (hair dryer, spacer heater, rice bag, Jamberry mini-heater, etc)

Prep nails by using the rubbing alcohol on each nail and let them air dry.  Then push down all your cuticles, this is more to ensure you have the most available space for the wrap to adhere to your nail.  The next step is to select your wrap size.  This is key!  You don't want the wrap to be too large for your nail, so when it doubt, go smaller. After you have selected your wrap, cut it in half and pull it off with the tweezer.  Heat is for 5 seconds.  Apply it to your nail and put some pressure on the entire surface (watch for bubbles!).  Heat again for a few seconds and add more pressure, especially around the edges.  I use my cuticle pusher to press down around the outer edge.  Then repeat!

I have had good success with the wraps when places on bare nails.  Last week, I put some over polish, but they were move around within a few days, so I eventually took them off.  I think I wasn't waiting long enough for my polish to dry before applying the wrap.  I will try that process again soon.  Here are all the manicures I've done so far!





So my overall opinion is that I love the print selection you get (Spring/Summer catalog now available!), but watch your application process over polished nails!

As always, thanks for reading!

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