I Moved to LA for Love. This is What It's Really Like

Beverly Hills Hotel

I’ve been in my new home in LA for a few weeks and it’s been great! The stress of a cross-country move has settled down and I’m finally starting to get out and explore the city. I’ve been sharing some of my favorite pics of LA and my new apartment, but haven’t yet shared the reason behind the big move yet.

Traveling in Los Angeles
Summer Beauty
Exploring Los Angeles

After spending 2 years in a long-distance relationship, we finally had the chance to move in together, but that meant moving to LA for his next job opportunity. We both had our hearts set on him moving back to NYC since that was home for both of us. But life had other plans. I knew I loved LA and had visited several times, but I never imagined myself quitting my job and giving up everything for a boy. I had built my career and close friendships all around New York, and I felt judged at every turn for my decision. I had already made a big global move for grad school, but moving for a relationship was different. We’ve all heard stories about the silly girl that gave up everything to follow a boy that ended up breaking her heart, and my friends and family worried I’d end up like that.

However I’ve learned how to drown out other people’s voices so I can listen to my own. My voice and my heart were telling me this was the right decision, the only decision. Making a big life decision is never easy, but it’s especially harder when so much of that decision is wrapped up in another person. If you’ve moved for a relationship or are thinking about it, know that it can be equally joyous and overwhelming, fun and frightening. If your partner is worth it (which they better be if you are moving for them!) they will recognize and appreciate the sacrifice you are making for them. Remember that no one’s opinions or thoughts matter as much as your own. If you ever feel like you are a bad feminist for the choice you make, remember that feminism is all about a women’s right to make her own choices.

And make sure wherever you go for whatever reason, you find a way to make it your own!

Everything You Need to Know About Moving for Love

#NYCStories: What Life in NYC Has Taught Me

New York City Glam

I started posting a series on Instagram sharing some of my favorite NYC Stories. Growing up in this city has shaped me in ways I’m slowly becoming more and more aware of as I get older and travel more. If you don’t live in NY, living here is like no place else. If you are planning a move or even a trip, here are some things you need to know to make the most of your experience!

Advenures in NYC
The Plaza Hotel NYC
The Plaza Hotel NYC
The Plaza NYC

NYC Life & Travel are Expensive

If you’ve never been here before, the prices wil be shocking! Growing up in the city made me a little more used to seeing extreme prices at every turn. That skill comes in really handy when traveling because I rarely get sticker shock (except for in Switzerland, where the combination of pricing and exchange rate is insane). Save up and prepare yourself and your wallet for outlandish rent, overpriced restaurants, $15 cocktails, and a view that can bring tears to your eyes.

You’ll Make a Lot of Friends But Only Have a Few Friends

Living here means you are constantly surrounded by people. The opportunities to socialize are endless and you’ll be able to meet new people at every turn. However I’ve learned that true friendships and authentic bonds are few and far between. In retrospect I wish I had devoted more time to those relationships, but it seemed we often took for granted that we could see each other any time. Have all the fun you can with all the right people, but make sure you find ways to prioritize the relationships that really count.

Street Food Is Always a Good Idea

From the halal stands to the gyro carts, NY street food is legendary. If you are germophobic or nervous about eating off a truck, start working on that before you land in the Big Apple! Of course the city is known for it’s concentration of incredible high-end restaurants, but considering the need to respect your wallet as discussed above, make sure you explore the low-cost options that can be just as delicious!

The Options Are Endless and the Familiar is Comforting

The city that never sleeps is also the city of endless options. There is so much amazing everything - restaurants, museums, lounges, and the list goes on. Anything your heart desires, you will find and it will be good! Even though we are spoiled for choice, you’ll see that New Yorkers often frequent the same spots! You might think we bounce around to a new place every night, but the fact is we all have our neighborhood bar or go to restaurant that we hit up a few times a week. If you visit NYC or make it your home, find the balance between visiting your faves on a regular basis and exploring something new when you can.

tips for living in nyc

If you are planning to move or visit NYC, let me know your questions in the comments!

Not the Met Gala but Still Fun! Black Tie Galas You Can Actually Get into

Met Gala Red Carpet Fashion

Today is a national fashion holiday – the Met Gala! Every fashionista is ready to pull up a chair and stay glued to their phones and social media for a first look at what everyone will be wearing on the red carpet. I’ve never been huge on awards shows, but I love the Met Gala! The looks are always so much more creative and inspiring than your typical red carpet, and I love seeing how celebs interpret the theme each year. This year’s theme is Camp: Notes on Fashion, so I’m expecting to see a whole lot of TOO MUCH on the red carpet tonight and I’m hoping my favorite celebs take risks and have fun. 

 Obviously, I’m not attending the Met Gala tonight, but I do love going to the occasional gala or black-tie function. It’s always great to get uber glam and go out to show support of a cause, but the ticket prices can be astronomical! Because I’m all about living your most glam, but affordable life, I scoured the internet for the best galas with tickets you can actually afford! They are still not cheap tickets, but some start as low as $100, which is just a little bit more than dinner/drinks out in the city or a new Zara dress. Check out the list below and save this post for future reference! 

Met Gala Red Carpet Style
Met Museum NYC
Ready for the Met Gala

 Black Tie Events Coming Up This Month

 

Harlem Nights 2019 - Harlem Rotary & Active Plus Gala

May 10, Tickets for $100-$130

 The Rotary Club of Harlem is one of 35,000+ clubs that work together to promote peace, fight disease, provide clean water, sanitation, and hygiene, save mothers and children, support education and grow local economies.Their annual gala is inspired by the classic film, Harlem Nights so get ready to bring your 1920’s glam! Get tickets here

 Navigating the Future: City Living NY's Annual Fundraiser

May 14, Tickets for $100

CITY LIVING NY’s mission is to empower youth aging out of foster care to successfully transition into adulthood by providing concrete resources, tools, and support services. This gala honors the work of those who made their missions possible and raises funds for their 2019-2020 service year. Get your tickets here. 

Tomorrow's Smile Today Gala 

May 16, Tickets for $100

 Tomorrow's Smile Today is a registered non-profit organization founded to provide education, information, and treatment to under-served populations worldwide and here in the United States. This year’s gala will focus on their recent work in Kenya and will provide supporters with more information about their Summer 2019 missions. Get your tickets here.

 

Galas and Events to Save for Next Year

 

These are events I’ve been to myself, but the dates have passed. Pin the graphic below and reference this post when it’s time to buy tickets!

 The Guggenheim Museum Young Collectors Party

The art museums flagship event is a blast! The YCC is a group of young professionals who enjoy private programs led by curators, a dedicated calendar of events, and invitations to parties and opening receptions. This is their annual formal event and tickets usually run between $200-250. Check out the Guggenheim’s Instagram for scenes from this year’s event and follow their social or website to find out about 2019 tickets! 

The Museum of the City of New York Harlem Whiskey Renaissance

The Museum of the City of New York is one of my favorites. It’s all about celebrating the history and culture of NY. They have several galas and events through the year, but one not to miss is the Harlem Whiskey RenaissanceGala. The party has a lighter tone than some ofhte more traditional benefits and fundraisers, as it celebrates whiskey and its storied past as the drink of choice for artisans and intellectuals during the Harlem Renaissance. Plus I see a discount on Pulsd for this event every year, giving you about half off the already affordable tickets! 

Let me know what summer events you can’t wait to attend, and of course your favorite looks on the Met Gala red carpet! 

getting into a gala

 

 

The Perfect NYC Staycation at Nomo Soho

Images by Wini Lao

Images by Wini Lao

Sometimes you just need to escape from it all! When life gets way too crazy and you find yourself getting overwhelmed, the perfect way to check out and relax is to take a little staycation. We can’t always jet off to exotic destinations unless you just happen to have major bank and unlimited time off, so a staycation is the next best thing. You can find a deal at a great hotel in your city to hideaway for a few days and get some much needed peace and quiet.  

Nomo Soho Staycation
Staycation at Nomo Soho
Nomo Soho Staycation Destination
DIY Skin Care Treatments

Nomo Soho is one of my favorites. It has everything you need for the perfect solo staycation – beautiful modern décor, a stellar restaurant and bar, comfortable, luxurious linens, plenty of cute nooks for photo opps, and heavenly plush bathrobes you can cozy up in! If you are feeling a little social the bar and lobby lounge are always great to hang out in. Or you can just lock your door and indulge in some of your favorite beauty treatments while ordering room service. Just be sure to get a room with a view, because the city skyline is not to be missed. 

If you are looking for great last minute deals I love Hotel Tonight and TravelZoo. And old fashioned, I know, but sometimes just calling the hotel reception can get you a major discount or unpublished rate. They may have a ton of rooms open last minute that they would love to fill. I’ve done this several times, for last minute trips and ones being planned weeks in advance, and have gotten up to 25% off the published rate, just by asking! 

NYC Hotel Guide

New York Moments - 4 of My Favorite Things About Life in NYC

I’m a native New Yorker. I’m lucky to be able to call this city is and has been my home and I’ve lived here most of my life, except for a few years in Italy for work and grad school. Even though I’ve traveled a ton, New York is like no place I’ve ever been. I’m not sure I’ll be here forever, but I know how much I love it now and how lucky I am to call this place home. Here are some of my favorite things about life in the city!

Brooklyn Bridge NYC
Pink Hair Fall Beauty Looks
Sunset on the Brooklyn Bridge
Pink Hair Brooklyn Bridge

The Creative Scene

NYC is full of amazing creatives. One of the things I love the most about my journey as a blogger is how many incredible, talented people I’ve had the privilege of working with. I’ve been so lucky to meet amazing photographers and content creators, and have had a blast with every one of them.

The Romance

There is just something magical about the city. I still lose my breath when I catch sight of the skyline at sunset or all light up after dark. The view never has and never will get old.

The Access

Whether you want warm cookies at 2am or authentic Vietnamese dumplings for brunch, New York has you covered. The dining scene is one that will, quite frankly, spoil you rotten for choice. Granted, I do wish I took more advantage of all the goodies the city has to offer, but a girl has to stay in shape!

My Rent-Stabilized Apartment

Seriously though! This city is expensive and rents are skyrocketing. If you are able to get affordable housing, hold on to it for dear life! My apartment is basically a unicorn - large, comfy, in a trendy neighborhood, has a great view, and is subject to regulated rent thanks to the city’s rent guidelines board. Rent-stabilized apartments can be hard to come by, so if you are looking work with your realtor to find one and keep it as long as you can!

4 Things to Know About Life in NYC

If you live here let me know what you love most about the city! And if you are planning to visit tell me what you are most excited about seeing here!

6 Open to the Public NYFW Events You Can't Miss!

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Fashion Month is kicking into high-gear! I have to admit, the Fall edition of NYFW is one of my favorites. The weather is warm, but still civilized so you can really bring it with the street style. If you have been dying to get into some Fashion Week events but aren't how to get on a coveted invite list, here are some of the best shows and events that are open to the public. Buy tickets, round-up your squad and get ready for a fun night of fashion inspo! 

Style Fashion Week

Style Fashion Week brings a host of designers together under one roof for a lineup of shows and after parties from September 6th-September 9th. Check out the full schedule here and register to attend! 

WWD x Samsung 837 Present Style Dimension

Editors from WWD give an inside look into the behind the scenes happenings at some of the major fashion houses  beauty brands through a series of discussions with designers, influencers and retailers. Guests to note include Caroline Maguire, fashion director of Shopbop, Torsten Hochstatter, the creative director of Puma, and Mark Badgley and James Mischka of Badly Mischka. Dates are September 6th & 7th.

Queens Fashion Week

This Queens native will definitely be stopping by the event celebrating the history of fashion in Queens! Queens is one of the birth places of amazing designers who have traveled all around the world and worked with some major players in the industry. The big day is Saturday September 8th, but it runs from the 2nd-15th. Tickets here

Essence Street Style Block Party

Day party season is almost over for the summer, so end it with the Essence Street Style Block Party! This event will feature performances by Teyana Taylor and Yemi Alade and is hosted by Actress and Comedienne Amanda Seales. Though it used to be free, it's well worth the ticket price! 

Street Style Photo Shoot

And if you want a taste of street style life for a day, some of my favorite photographers are throwing a free photo shoot meetup at Domino Park in Brooklyn from 5-9! Follow Wini Lao's Instagram for details and their updated location! 

Blogger and the Brand

Blogger and the Brand is a networking event for emerging and established bloggers and lifestyle brands. I went last year when I was starting to ramp up my content and I'm so happy to announce that I was asked to join as a Style Host this year! RSVP here, and hopefully I'll see some of your lovely faces! 

 

End of Summer! Everything to do this 2018 Labor Day Weekend

Labor Day NYC Activities.jpg

And the last official weekend of summer is here! I'm so going to miss the season, but I'm also starting to get excited about Fall - dressing in stylish layers, not worrying about my makeup melting off, and keeping my curls curly, not a frizzy mass. If you want to make the most out of your long weekend, here are a few tips for how to spend it!

Events

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The Freesome Block Party by Fun With Friends is one of my favorites. I'm too old to be up in the club, but I still can't resist a good day party. Everyday People also has a great day party and Tiki Disco is always a great time! And conveniently they are all in Brooklyn, so hopping around will be easy. 

Day Trips

If you want to escape the city for a day, I posted some of my favorite day trips from the city a few weeks ago, so give it another read here if you missed it! But Fire Island, Jones Beach, North Fork and Hudson Valley are all a quick drive away if you want to sneak in one more trip before saying goodbye to summer. 

Shopping

Labor Day is a great time to do some retail therapy, and here are some that you should get your wallets ready for! Urban Outfitters is offering 30% off sale items, Yoox has 25% off already discounted items, and Forever21 has an amazing 50% off sale! For those of you that need chic workwear, Ann Taylor is also offering 40% off full-priced accessories and sale items, and Shopbop has a whole 70% off sale!  Also if you are randomly looking for a new mattress or appliance, Esquire has the whole roundup! 

Let me know what you guys get into, and definitely what you buy! 

 

The Perfect Summer Pinknic

Images by Misso LLC

Images by Misso LLC

Can you believe how fast summer is flying by! Here we are in mid-August already, the peak of summer. Fall (then winter of course) will be here before you know it. I've been having a blast and doing a ton of travel this summer, but I'm also trying to make sure to find time to enjoy downtime in the city. There is nothing more classic for summer in NY than a Central Park picnic! Thanks to the girls at Exclusively Social, I was able to attend an amazing blogger Pinknic! The décor was beautiful and bohemian, with everything in shades of pink. The team also had product sampling by Gilly's Organics, rainbow bagels from The Bagel Store, and of course, plenty of rosé! 

Girls Summer Picnic Ideas
Summer Picnic Ideas NYC
Perfect Summer Picnic
Rainbow Bagels

Since it was a blogger picnic we spent most of the day networking and taking advantage of photo opps, but there was plenty of time to soak up the sun and gorgeous scenery.

If you want to have a picnic with your squad you definitely don’t have to be this elaborate, but why not do it in style! If you want to keep it simple and stylish, just plan a color scheme and keep your blankets, décor and outfits in the same family. Grab a few bouquets of fresh or silk flowers and some healthy, refreshing treats because it has been BLAZING hot these days.

Blogger Picnic Central Park
All Pink Summer Picnic

Let me know how your fabulous summer picnics turn out! And shop my look below!

Pin me!

Pin me!

3 Workouts You Need to Try This Summer!

Yoga on the Beach

Is it just me or is it getting harder and harder to stay in shape every year? IDK if it's my age, being in a relationship, my social life or what, but for some reason I keep gaining and losing the same 5 pounds! In an attempt to diversify my workouts and keep the body snatched, I've been checking out new workout classes in the city every so often to keep my muscles guessing, build strength and stamina, and of course not get bored doing the same workout all the time! Here is my review of some of the new classes I've tried and a few that are on my list to review as a fitness and lifestyle blogger. 

Brrrn

Hands down the coolest workout I've tried this year! The new studio has a series of workout classes that take place in cooler temperatures - 60 degrees, 55 degrees, and 45 degrees. Check out the descriptions of their classes and the Infrared Sauna and take advantage of the BOGO deal they have on site for new students! 

Aerial Hoop

I've been a fan of Body & Pole for years, frequenting their pole and other dance and cross-training fitness classes. I did take a few lyra, or aerial hoop classes and was terribly awkward, but I've been feeling like I might give it another go. It's extremely difficult, and also a challenge because I struggle with motion sickness, but it is on my list for this summer or Fall! 

Y7 Yoga

Hot yoga in the summer is no fun, but come Fall I love the steamy hot workouts. I've heard amazing things about Y7 and their hip-hop inspired yoga classes. And since a new location just opened closer to my office I'll be able to finally fit them into my regular workout flow. 

And since I have been working on getting into my yoga practice again, my partnership with Gaiam came at the perfect time! Gaiam asked me to be one of their Gaiam Gurus, and I am so psyched to be working with them. The clothes are super comfy and stylish and the equipment is both stylish and functional. Check out my picks of the month below! 

Let me know what workouts are your go-tos or new ones you want to try! 

pin me for later!

pin me for later!

Squad Goals! 3 Perks of Forming Your Blogger Squad

Blogger Girls in NYC

I’ve been blogging for a few years now and one of the best things about it, is well, other bloggers! Nothing beats building a sense of collaboration and community with beautiful, talented, creative women that share your goals and mission. I’ve been so fortunate to connect with an amazing blogger girl squad here in the city. Here are some of the things I love the most about them!

NYC Brooklyn Bridge Street Style

You have instant common ground

There are things that every blogger can relate to. We all have spent nights spent working on our sites and content calendars and weekends filled with styling sessions and photo shoots. Your friends may only see the glamourous parts, like you posting cute pictures and going to fun branded events. But the rest of us really get it! Even if you are in a different niche, you understand having a crazy schedule, feeling the pressure to always look amazing online, and trying to find ways to make your content stand out! 

You get to build a unique network

Whether you are looking for anything from photo shoot locations to tax advice, if you have a strong network of other bloggers you can definitely find the answers! I love being able to rely on my network to brainstorm ideas, troubleshoot issues only they would understand, and get inspired for projects I’m trying to tackle! 

You get to have fun and be productive

Imagine having all the fun with your friends, while simultaneously networking, strategizing, and sharing resources to support each other’s goals. That’s what having a blogger squad is like! For the perennial multitasker like me, being able to have fun with people who’s company I genuinely enjoy while keeping on top of growing my business is major! 

Pin me for later!

Pin me for later!

If you are looking for connect with other bloggers in the city, try Meetup to find groups, or sliding into someone’s dm’s if you want to connect! 

 

 

The Perfect Summer Day & Perfect Summer Dress

Rose Garden Weekend NYBG

Summer in the city is finally here! It’s so nice coming back from a trip but keeping the vacation vibe going thanks to the amazing weather and summer fun! 

One of my favorite places in New York is the New York Botanical Garden. It’s full of a gorgeous collection of blooms and has great special exhibitions all year round. So as soon as summer Friday’s started, I hopped on the Metro-North and took a quick 20 minute train ride up to the garden for an afternoon of exploring. 

Summer Roses Full Bloom

Since it was Rose Garden weekend I was feeling garden party chic and decided to break out one of the dresses I picked up in Spain. This easy breezy cotton baby is so comfortable but has just a touch of romance and glamour. And it’s in the color that I can’t seem to let go of – millennial pink! This came from a tiny boutique in Mallorca, but check out similar styles you can purchase below. 

Rose garden summer style

Since gardens are definitely not the place for high-heels I decided to balance the floaty dress with a pair of fringe, Dolce Vita sandals. They are super stylish and comfy, and keep the summer vibe going strong. Plus the yellow and white fringe is an unexpected pairing with the soft, dusty pink dress.  

Rose Garden Portrait.jpg

What are your favorite ways to spend a summer day in the city? Let me know in the comments, and what you will be wearing! And follow me on Instagram @malikahkelly for more of my outfit posts! And would you believe I shot all the pics in this post myself? Check out more about my self-portrait photography tips

3 Spring Trends You Need Now!

Well it took a while, but Spring is finally here! I’ve been putting off my shopping until I could actually wear the goodies I was buying and now it’s finally time! I tend to live by my own personal style more than I follow trends, but there are a few that I’m pretty excited about for the season. You got a little preview in the video above, and check them out in more detail!

Maxi Dress and Leather Jacket

Maxi Dresses

If you want easy comfortable glamour, a maxi dress is the way to go! It feels like you are basically wearing pajamas, but you look super chic. Plus they can be great on their own with no styling, or you can add a layer to finish the look. Since this dress is so feminine and delicate I like the contrast of adding a tough girl moto jacket and black leather booties. As it gets hotter you can lighten up the look with sandals, and either no jacket or a lightweight vest. 

Graphic T Shirt and Scarf Spring Layers

Layers

You usually hear about layering for Fall, but some Spring days can be cooler and windy so you need a bit more coverage. I like pairing a graphic T with a lightweight jacket, and taking the look up a notch with a scarf.  Depending on the weather that day, you can rock this look with jeans like in the photo, or denim cutoffs like I did in the video

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Crop Tops & Mom Jeans

I pretty much never met a crop top I didn’t like. A lot of people think they can be too sexy or revealing for them, but there are crop tops for every body type. If you want to make the look more playful, pair it with something oversized, like these high waisted mom jeans. They give you instant cool girl cred and you don’t have to worry about the look being too revealing! 

 

What are your favorite trends for Spring! Let me know in the comments and shop the story below! 

The Perfect Staycation at Scribners Lodge

This post is sponsored by Scribners Catskills Lodge & Trailways NY

This post is sponsored by Scribners Catskills Lodge & Trailways NY

You guys know I love to travel, and even though I've been lucky enough to do a lot of international travel, I've been working on doing more domestic travel this year. So when I had the chance to spend some time at Scribners Lodge in the Catskills, I jumped at the chance! 

Scribners Catskills Lodge

Scribners is a gem of a property in Hunter, NY.  The level of comfort and attention to detail is phenomenal. The building has been around since 1966, but underwent a transformation in Fall 2016. The attention to detail is phenomenal, from the amazing staff, stylish comfy rooms and treats like s'mores kits and to-go bottles of their signature cocktails. 

Summer Travel Ideas
Stylish Travel Accessories

Plus the restaurant, Prospect is a can't miss. It really is an experience all on it's own. Cocktails and wine list are steller, and the food is as delicious and decadent as it is photogenic. 

Prospect Scribners Lodge Brunch
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If, like me, you can barely drive to save your life, the property is easily accessible on the Trailways Bus from Port Authority. It stops just down the road from the property and depending on traffic and how many passengers are on board, the driver may turn around and drop you off right in front of the hotel. Mine was nice enough to give me front door service since the bus was pretty empty and the road clear. But it's a pretty smooth walk from the hotel to the bus stop if they can't drop you off, or when you are making your way back. 

If you are looking for a mini trip somewhere close to New York, definitely check out Scribners! But be warned - it's so nice you will pretty much not want to bother leaving. 

April Showers, Spring Layers

Spring Rainy Day Style

Spring came, then went in a day!

Last Saturday was an incredible 70 degrees and sunny, only to descend back into the 40’s the next day! This weather is really keeping me on the struggle bus. Between the extreme dips in temperature, the clouds and rain it really is both a mood and wardrobe killer! I can’t stand to wear my Fall/Winter wardrobe anymore, and have been trying to creatively transition out of my winter sweaters and work in some of the cute Spring trends. It’s too cold to just wear any of my favorite Spring pieces without layers!

Froze for this shot for a minute though!

Froze for this shot for a minute though!

I’ve been feeling polka dots this season, so had my eye on this super cute jumpsuit from Macy’s. It’s a lightweight fabric, open back (another one of my favorites) and the pants are just a little bit flowy so it’s so easy to wear. Plus white is one of my go-to colors for Spring/Summer so it was the perfect find. However since the weather won’t let me be great, I had to top it with my favorite leather moto jacket to warm up. I’ll have to wait until summer to show off the pretty open back detail.

 

And even though this jumpsuit is begging to be paired with a cutout sandal or chunky 2 piece heel, the forecast called for clouds and drizzles so I went with sneakers instead. At least a bright floral umbrella is giving me some Spring vibes! 

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What are you looking forward to most about the new season (if it ever gets here?) And shop the look below!

 

Spring Ready Hair with Stylebox Salon!

Balayage Natural Hair.jpg

So I'm sure you noticed my new look on Instagram and my stories lately, so I'm finally spilling the tea! I'd been wanting to color my hair for sometime, debating the shade, the process, and how it would effect the health of my hair overall. Luckily I had found an amazing salon and a stylist I trusted to get me to the color of my dreams! 

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Stylebox Salon is a new gem in Brooklyn, with friendly and attentive service, talented stylists that serve all hair types, and a fantastic bar so you can sit drink and be merry, as they say on their site! They use amazing vegan products and even keep the bathroom stocked with organic tampons! 

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The process started with choosing a color, so I settled on a full head of caramel blonde balayage. I'd been obsessed with the technique forever but only ever seen it on straight or wavy hair, so wasn't sure it would work on kinky textured hair. 

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The brighter blondes were kind of calling me, but I decided to play it safe since it was my first time coloring. Nicole carefully painted tiny stands of my hair, keeping them separated with foil. Then I hung out with a bellini while it processed!

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My hair is super porous so it processed pretty quickly. However it decided on its own that I should be a redhead. My hair turned a shade of red that wasn't anywhere near any of the colors in the book!  Luckily Nicole expertly toned the color down so instead of leaving looking like Ronald McDonald, I ended up with this!

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And here's a close up of the finished style!

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Overall I ove it and my hair feels healthy as ever! I may make a second visit in a few months to try and go lighter, but for now just going to see how my hair feels. 

Have you guys tried balayage or are you debating? And check out the full Stylebox Menu for all their service options! 

5 Tips to Survive NYFW!

Images by  AV Photography

Images by AV Photography

And another season of Fashion Week is here! The energy in the city is always great this time of year, even though it can get a little stressful. If you love fashion as much as I do, you try your best to go to as many events as possible, jam-packing your days and spending your nights party-hopping and working on keeping your posts up to dates. Here are 5 tips you need to survive and slay the week! 

1. Get Organized

Organization is key to make it through the crazy week! It can get super stressful and overwhelming, but you can make it through with proper planning. Keep your calendar up to date and screenshot your bar codes for easy check-in. Searching through emails for confirmations and addresses can take forever so just make sure to keep everything organized as your invites roll in. Give your daily agenda the once-over as you get ready in the morning so you know what to dress for and how your day will run. 

NYFW Street Style Outfit Ideas

2. Plan street star worthy looks

Part of the fun of NYFW is getting shot by the throngs of photographers hanging out outside of shows. While "peacocking" has gotten a bad reputation, fashion week is still a great time of year to show of your personal style and add a touch of flair. Whether or not you end up in a street style roundup, you can still enjoy dressing to the 9's and letting your fashion girl star shine. 

Fashion Week Outfit Ideas Street Style

3. Get ready to stalk

Not gonna lie, getting invites can be tricky, especially if you aren't on any PR lists. The struggle to get a foot in the door is real! However as fashion week has become a little more democratic in recent years, you can definitely have luck getting into shows from smaller designers. Sign up on the official site for the full schedule and contacts to request invites and start shooting off emails. The major players won't really be listed here, but you can definitely be persistent and try your luck at getting into smaller shows. 

How to Get Into Fashion Week

4. Try to get a backstage pass

If you have a connect in the beauty world see if you can get backstage access. You'll get plenty of amazing content, plus often times you can grab standing room to watch the show once it starts. I covered backstage once and it was more fun than the actual runway show! 

Tips to get into nyfw

5. Get in on the fun with open to the public events

If you can't get on any coveted invite lists, no need to miss out on the fashion week fun. There are hundreds of open to the public events every season! Search on event listing sites and check out Fashionista.com's roundup every season. That way you can actually sign up with your crew and catch a show or event together, since you NEVER get plus 1's at a main event. 

Let me know any survival tips I missed in the comments! And if you are out and about, let me know where we can bump into each other! 

3 Tips to Slay Your Winter Style!

Images by   Ten Aldane

Images by Ten Aldane

Does it feel like winter will never end? It's only January so we've got a few more weeks (ok fine more than a few) of chilly temps before we can finally celebrate Spring. Winter style can be a challenge, trying to stay fashionable without putting yourself at risk for hypothermia.

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Here are just a few of my tips for slaying the winter season!

1. Layer smartly

I'm a huge fan of Uniqlo's HEATTECH collection.  The smart fabric keeps you warm and toasty without adding bulk. They have everything from tanks, long-sleeve T's, tights and leggings for men and women so start building a collection!

2. Splurge on good boots and gloves.

You have on multiple layers on your body but only one on your hands so make it a good one. I love anything cashmere lined and touch screen fingers are a must. My go to boots are Sorel, they are amazing quality and pretty much as stylish as snow boots can get. 

Sorel Winter Snow Boots

3. Top it off!

Never leave home without a hat! You need it to keep warm and protect your strands. I usually protective style through winter with wigs to keep my natural curls safe from damage, breakage and dryness. But however you wear your hair, make sure your head and ears stay covered. Use the opportunity to finish the look with a can't miss me hat! 

Winter Style in New York
Flatiron Building New York City

How do you guys keep your style on point when the temps are brutal? Or do you just say screw it and wait for Spring?

Winter Style Tips

3 Can't Miss Activities for the Ultimate NYC Christmas Staycation

Images by   AV Photography  

Images by AV Photography 

Christmas is just 3 days away guys! Since I'm a local I usually don't have to travel around the holidays. Instead of stressful, drama filled travel, staying local helps me have some downtime to really appreciate and enjoy my city.

Christmas Rockefeller Center NYC

New York is always amazing, but there really is something magical about the holiday season here. Since I have a friend in town visiting this week, I'm getting a great excuse to indulge in all the classic NYC activities that tourists do when they come into town.

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Here are a few that I'm most excited about!

The Holiday Train Show at New York Botanical Garden

I'm a member of the garden so visit several times a year, but one of the most unique events is the annual holiday train show. The lines get intense, but I have to say it's worth it! Even though the show is in the conservatory, the line runs outside, so layer up because you may be waiting awhile

Drinks at Bar SixtyFive

If you want the views that you get from Top of the Rock without the crowds and lines, head up for a drink at Bar SixtyFive. Reservations are encouraged but not required and the place is pretty swanky so dress appropriately. It's expensive but the drinks and apps are amazing, and the view can't be beat. 

Taking in the holiday window displays

In my day to day, I'm rushing through the streets trying to get where I'm going in time. But during the holidays the city streets are gorgeous, and the department stores up 5th Avenue have the most amazing window displays. Spend some time strolling the blocks taking in the unique, creative displays, and maybe pop-in for a last minute gift for a friend (or yourself). 

Christmas and Holiday Beauty Ideas

Let me know your favorite thing about Christmas in NY (or in your city)!

An Affordable Take on The Trend of the Season

Images by Wini Lao

Images by Wini Lao

It’s only the second day of the week and I’m seriously on the struggle bus! As much as I love this time of year it can get super intense managing so many personal and professional obligations. Sometimes you just need to take a day to yourself to decompress, refocus, and reset. On days like that, I like to block off time in my calendar and hole up at a stylish, quiet coffee shop.  Even though you are still wired, there is something about the change of scenery that can help you relax and get refreshed so you are ready to take on a new day or week!

Coffee Shop Style

Even when I’m taking a day to myself, I still try not to let my style slack. After all, you are just as comfortable in a stylish Fall friendly maxi dress as you could be in anything else! This flowy knit is perfect for Fall, but still basically feels like pajamas.  Since the chilly weather is starting to set in, I paired it with one of the season’s trendiest items, an embroidered moto jacket. This is another one from Candie’s at Kohl’s but it has a much higher end feel. Even though only a hint of my shoes are showing, they still had to be cute! I went with these Victorian inspired lace-up shoes with a chunky heel for extra comfort. Look complete!

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Embroidered Moto Jacket Detail

If you love this look shop the story below! And let me know how you stay sane when life starts to get extra.

Blogger Feature: Ashli with an Eye!

Images by Olivia Kang

Images by Olivia Kang

I'm happy to introduce my first collar with another blogger, Ashli from Ashli with an Eye! I actually had the pleasure of working with this babe years ago when I lived in Milan! We both worked at Sergio Rossi, but since I was there and she was based here in NY we never actually met! It was such a pleasure to reconnect and work on a collaborative photo shoot, we decided to do a feature on each other on our respective blogs. Check out this fun Q&A with Ashli! 

Gimme the scoop: where ya from, whaddya do, who are yas?

I’m Ashli, a fashion and business consultant, taco connoisseur and creator/curator/owner of the blog Ashli with an Eye. AWAE focuses fashion, lifestyle, travel and just the general hilariousness that comes with not knowing how to adult. at all.  

What are 3 words you would use to describe your blog? Your style?

Trends. Shopping. Realness. Keep your eyes peeled for recipes too, I’m a huge cook and can’t wait to incorporate it more into my blog!! 3 words for my style would be FOREVER. CHANGING. DAILY. One day (*cough* today *cough*) I could be in LuLu leggings, a oversized tank and a leather jacket w Nikes, the next day I’m in a pretty floral dress and lashes and heels … still with a leather jacket tho cause #life. 

What advice would you have for someone moving to New York?

Don’t forget to be a tourist! After being here 7 years, there’s still so many parts of “NEW YORK” I haven’t done or experienced. You always think “I’ll do it someday” – oh ya? Then do ittttt! What happens if your job randomly relocates you? Or you decide to move somewhere else? Or you fall in love in SPAIN AND MOVE THERE? …a girl can dream.

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What advice would you have for someone wanting to work in fashion?

Do ANYTHING that is asked of you. When I first started working at Oscar de la Renta fresh out of college, I would have licked the floor if they asked me to. 6 months of this “first to arrive last to leave” mentality and I was surely noticed. The head of PR got me my first full time job at Gucci!

Whats the best advice you've ever gotten?

“You’re the only person who should give yourself advice” …yes I realize the irony in this. But so many times I’ve listened to other people instead of my own gut and fully regretted it later. You know what’s best for you. Take the risk, dump the a-hole.

 If you could only have 5 apps which would you have?

Instagram, Lyft, OpenTable, Twitter, 1010 (I have played this on the subway for yeeeeears!)

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Whats your total-day-off-time-for-yourself kind of day look like?

Wake up crazy early, go to the gym, come home and make breakfast, lay on the couch and binge watch 900,000 episodes of something (lately Boy Meets World!), make a huge dinner of my famous Cacio e Pepe and down a bottle of wine cause I like a challenge and Sauvignon Blanc equally.

 If you could travel anywhere in the world where would you go and why?

Morocco!! I’m so inspired by the incredible colors, patterns and of course the food!

Any music currently on repeat?

I like indie jams before theyre big, everyone should check out Rynn – I’m OBSESSED. (best song is Islands IMO)

Whats your favorite meal - the meal you'd love at the snap of a finger at all times?

Velveeta Shells & Cheese. I should by stock in Velveeta.

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OK RAPID FIRE.

Wine or cocktails? Vino please thanks

Tacos or pizza? TACOS. Fav food.

Miley Cyrus or Katy Perry? Miles <3

Spotify or Pandora? Spotify

Club or dive bar? Dive Bar!! Preferably w darts.

Saturday night or Sunday brunch? Sunday brunch

Expensive shoes or expensive bag? Expensive bag, I pay $20 for all my shoes

Lipstick or eyeshadow? Lipstick (I only wear Lovecraft by Kat Von D)

Favorite podcast? I used to have a podcast RIP called How to Adult but no longer. So I’d say Guys We F***ed.

Flats or heels? Heels4Lyfe

Dogs or cats? Dogs

Chanel or Gucci? Chanel, ugh Karl <3

 

Learn more about Ashli and check out her blog AshliWithanEye.net