Fall Staple Pieces You Need In Your Closet

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Happy Wednesday! With the end of August near, that only means one thing: fall is almost here! My favorite thing to do lately is scour the web for fall items to add to my closet. But with buying a new car, it’s really hard to stay under budget. Until I found Zulily! They offer the best brands at the best prices! Y’all, I found a YSL bag for over 50% off! My favorite thing about them, is they have items that will fit everyone’s budget. I decided to do a roundup of my favorite fall staple items that I found at Zulily below!

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Cold Shoulder Tops: If you are looking for a top that will transition perfectly from summer to fall, then look no further than this one from Zulily! The long sleeves will keep you warm, while the open shoulders will help you stay cool on warmer days. The ruffle adds a cute detail, and is perfect to wear casually or to work. You also can’t beat the $11.99 price tag!

A Cozy Cardigan: For chilly fall mornings, a cozy oversized cardigan is perfect to have to throw over any outfit. I love this Lemoniade one I found on Zulily!

Dark Jeans: Jeans are so versatile that you can wear them all year round, but there’s just something about a dark wash that makes them perfect for fall. I love these by Silver Jeans Co!

Crossbody Bag: I love adding a crossbody bag to any fall outfit. This one from Isaac Mizrahi can be worn all year round!

Booties: You can’t complete a fall outfit without a pair of booties. I love the braid detail on these Frye Black Suede Booties I found on Zulily!

View my full fall roundup list on Maven! These items will only be on sale for a couple days on Zulily, so make sure you grab them before they sell out! If they do, don’t be discouraged though! Everyday Zulily adds more items for sale, so there will always be cute designer items you can find within your budget.

Head over to Zulily’s website, and let me know what you find in the comments!

Valerie

This post was sponsored by Maven and Zulily. All opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that make Styled Muse possible! 

 

The Best Mascara Combination For Long & Thick Lashes

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L’oreal Voluminous Primer  //  Too Faced Better Than Sex  //  Lancome Monsieur BIG  //  Tarte Lights, Camera, Lashes

Happy Monday! The question I always get the most is which mascara I use. I will admit, I feel like I have tried every mascara out there for the last couple months in order to find the best ones. I’m also going to share which vitamins I use to help my lashes grow longer and thicker (that actually works!).

First, I’m going to start with the vitamins. In order for the mascara to do it’s job, you need to have healthy lashes. I recommend getting a vitamin that contains at least 2,500 mcg of Biotin. I used to get the Olly Beauty vitamins, but it started to get expensive buying them (there’s only a month worth of vitamins in the package for $15). I found the Nature’s Bounty Hair, Skin & Nails gummie vitamins at Walmart and Target for half the price, and with more vitamins in the container! They seem to work exactly the same. I take 2 every morning after eating breakfast. I have noticed a HUGE difference in my lashes after taking Biotin vitamins. I seem to be growing more lashes, and they are longer!

Now, onto the mascara! I always prime my lashes before applying mascara. It adds more length and volume (you will seriously notice a huge difference when you start using a primer). The best one that I have found is the L’oreal Voluminous Primer. This. Stuff. Is. Amazing. It is better than any high end primer I have tried, and is less than $10. YOU NEED IT.

Next, I add a layer of the Tarte Lights, Camera, Lashes Mascara. A few months ago, Ulta had it on sale for $10, so I decided to pick it up. I’m so glad I did! It adds the perfect amount of length to my lashes. If you want even more length, just add a light 2nd layer. I then apply the Too Faced Better Than Sex Waterproof Mascara. It adds SO much volume. This is literally the best mascara I have ever tried (and I have pretty much tried them all…). If your lashes start to stick together, just smooth them out with the comb side of your eyebrow brush. Works everytime. If you are on a budget, and just want to splurge on the Too Faced mascara, then you can replace the Tarte mascara with the L’oreal Voluminous original mascara. It works just as good, and is under $8!

Now, for a little review. Influenster sent me the brand new Lancome Monsieur BIG mascara to test out. It does add a little bit of length, but that’s about it. It also smears and clumps pretty bad. It’s no where near the quality of the mascaras I mentioned above.

What mascara is your favorite? Let me know in the comments!

Have a great week, and thanks for reading!

Valerie

Lancome Monsieur BIG mascara received complimentary from Influenster for testing purposes. All opinions are my own. 

Nordstrom Anniversary Sale – Plus Size Picks

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The Nordstrom Anniversary Sale is finally open to the public! As I’m sure most of you know, the sale opens for credit card holders 8 days before it opens for the public, and let me tell you, this sale has been crazy. So many items sold out within the first few days of it being open to just card holders. Today when it opened to the public, it seems like they didn’t restock anything like they had said they were going to. A lot of people aren’t happy (I was on their Instagram page to get more info about restocking and WOW! I wouldn’t want to be their customer service right about now…). According to their customer service, everything they have available is stocked. If an item says it’s not available, then it has sold out. If they happen to get returns or someone cancels their order, then those items will put placed on the website.

Y’all I have been eyeballing these Halogen Calf Hair flats! Every few minutes I refresh the page to see if my size has been restocked, haha! They sold out in my size within the first couple days, and I’m so sad! This was one of the main items I wanted. I did end up getting this military peplum jacket and this cold shoulder top (but in a red color, which is sold out). I also noticed that Nordstrom started placing some items on backorder. This Sole Society bag I wanted was sold out at first, then was put on backorder, so of course I had to grab it! NORDSTROM PLEASE DO THAT WITH THE HOLOGEN FLATS! Haha!

This year for the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale, I decided to do something a little different. I always see the same thing on round ups over and over again, but I never see plus size round ups! Depending on the item, I can either wear a regular or plus size. So I decided to include all plus size clothing items! I also included a few accessories and makeup items. If you aren’t plus size, a lot of these items are also offered in regular sizes, just check the website or shoot me an e-mail and I will send you a direct link! I was actually really excited when I saw that Nordstrom had a plus size section for the sale, way to go Nordstrom! 🙂

Like I said above, a lot of these items only have a few sizes left and WILL sell out, so make sure you order them fast! The Mac lipstick set is only $26 and the watch is only $15! Both are still available on the website. If there is a specific item you are looking for, just leave a comment or shoot me an e-mail and I will send you a link! Happy Shopping!

Hope you have a great weekend, and thanks for reading!

Valerie

How To Throw A 4th Of July BBQ

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Happy Monday! Do you have to work today, or are you on vacation? Luckily I am on vacation until Thursday! Much needed time off. What are your plans for 4th of July? Still undecided? That’s where I’m at right now. 4th of July is tomorrow, and we still don’t have plans set in stone. I have a few family members that are having BBQ’s, but my boyfriend and I are unsure if we just want to spend the day at home (we went camping all weekend long and celebrated 4th of July with my parents), or head to a family member’s house. Or do I just throw a little BBQ with a few close friends? Since I have one day to get this all together, I’m going to show you what I did to host a last minute BBQ!

I love hosting parties outside. We have such a small place, but I have the prettiest backyard (which is where I shot these photos!). I have to say, I felt like The Mad Hatter in Alice in Wonderland, setting up for tea. I had rabbits running all around me! We have so much wildlife in our backyard, it’s crazy! We even have chickens running around (yes, I said chickens!). My landlord lives a few houses down from us and she lets them roam around when she’s outside (our backyards are all connected). They love to be pet just like dogs!

Anyways, onto the BBQ! All of the items in the photos above are from Dollar Tree, except the mason jar cups (they were a Christmas gift) and fresh flowers. Heading to your local Dollar Tree to get items for 4th of July will really help you save a lot of money! I went there and bought all of these items, a makeup organizer, fireworks (just sparklers and pop its), and a bunch of candy for my boyfriend (haha!). My total was $24!

One thing I hate about hosting, is that I’m always cooking and don’t get a chance to spend time with my guests. It’s always a good idea to have your grill set up near your guests, and buy simple sides that don’t take long to make. You can even buy pre-made items from the deli like potato or pasta salad. One of my favorite appetizers are fruit kabobs! You can make them in the design of the American flag to stay festive.

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It’s super easy to make. All I used was blueberries, mini marshmallows, and cut up strawberries. To make the items slide on easily (especially the marshmallows) I just dipped my thumb and 1st finger in olive oil, and rubbed it on the kabob stick. Worked perfectly!

One of my favorite BBQ alcoholic drinks has to be cola and whisky. I was invited to an event in STL to celebrate the launch of Alive Magazine’s 3rd issue, and to try the new Jim Beam Vanilla. The event was focused around art and entrepreneurs. I left the event so inspired after listening to all of the artists and entrepreneurs talk about how they got started. Make sure you pick up the new issue and read all of their interviews! As soon as I walked in, I was invited to try the new Jim Beam Vanilla. You guys, it was SO GOOD. It was smooth and had a great vanilla aftertaste.

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Jim Beam Vanilla and Cola (from Jim Beam’s website)

1 part Jim Beam Vanilla
2 parts Cola (any brand)
Cherry Garnish

Fill mason jar with ice. Pour Jim Beam Vanilla into ice filled mason jar, then top with cola. Garnish with cherry (optional).

The new Jim Beam Vanilla is so smooth, and when mixed with cola, it tastes like you are drinking vanilla cola. So yummy! To make it a little patriotic, I added a 4th of July paper straw.

Head to the Jim Beam website HERE (you have to be 21!) to see where you can find the new Jim Beam Vanilla near you, and to see all the cocktails you can make with it! Make sure you let me know how you like it in the comments!

Thanks for reading, and have a Happy 4th of July!

Valerie

This post was sponsored by Jim Beam Vanilla and HEX. All opinions are my own. Thanks for supporting the brands that make Styled Muse possible! 

St. Louis Style Collective Meetup

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Above photos taken by Taylor Mobley of blondeandambitiousblog.com

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Above photo taken by Carmen Ramirez of frontrowstl.com

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Pictured above from left to right: Myself, April, Anna, Taylor, and Carmen. (click the names to see their blogs!)

On May 21st, the St. Louis ladies of Style Collective had our first meetup! But it wasn’t your ordinary meetup. We were celebrating the launch of Style Collective’s new podcast! Just search “Becoming Fearless” to give it a listen. I love meeting bloggers that are located in the STL area. It gives me comfort knowing that we are all doing this blogging thing together, and trying to figure it all out as we go, considering it’s kind of a new industry.

The meetup was held at Blo Blow Dry Bar in Chesterfield, MO. About 30 minutes from STL. Blo was nothing but amazing, and gave us complimentary blow outs. I decided on the style “Pillow Talk”. You can see in the photos above :). It was my first blow out, and the experience was SO relaxing. I cannot wait to go back! They were so accommodating and let us setup our snacks on a table in the back of the salon. We had cheese, crackers, grapes, cookies, and of course champagne!

We also had the opportunity to collaborate with some great local shops! They were kind enough to donate items from their shops for goodies bags for each of the girls. You can see in the photos below what they gave each of us. Thank you to all the shops who donated! I linked all of their websites and put their Instagram handles so you can check them out!

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Paperdolls Boutique @pdshopgirl: They have the cutest clothes! I’m in love with the scent of the candle they gave us. I also cannot wait to wear those bracelets!

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Christopher’s @christopherskirkwood127: This shop has the perfect gift items! Christopher’s was kind enough to give us Pink Pig Soap, and a tape measure (are you surprised I didn’t own one of these!? haha)

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CR Jewels @crjewels: Our very own Carmen Ramirez made these gorgeous jewels and was nice enough to donate a few to us!

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The Spotted Pig @thespottedpigstl: Another one of my favorite local shops for gift items! This would be a great place to go for Father’s Day gifts! They were super kind, and sent us this Lucky Penny key chain.

I had such a blast at our meetup, and I cannot wait for our next one! If you would like to join Style Collective to experience local meetups, and to pump up your blogging game, you can join HERE!

Hope everyone has a great week!

Valerie

P.S.: I have an exciting Instagram collaboration coming up with a huge clothing company, so make sure you are following me on Instagram to see it! I can’t wait to show you!

 

Nordstrom Half Yearly Sale

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Happy Friday! I decided to kick off this Memorial 3 day weekend with my favorite picks from the Nordstrom Half Yearly Sale. This is one of the biggest sales they have of the year (the other one being the Anniversary Sale, which I will also share my picks in July). What I love about this sale is that designer items are included. I saw a YSL bag for over $500 off, like whoa! But of course it sold out right after I saw it. Items go super fast, so if you see anything you like, make sure you jump on it.

Anyways, most of the shirts above I currently have in my shopping cart, and I’m having a hard time trying to figure out which ones to get! Help me out by commenting below with which one I should purchase and style for you guys! I have really been wanting a robe, so this one is a must for me! After going through my closet last weekend, I realized I didn’t have enough short sleeved shirts for summer! I’m in love with this sheer one! I also have this one in the color “Neon Pink” in my cart, even though it’s not on sale, I just couldn’t pass it up! The color is perfect for summer with a pair of white skinny jeans.

They also have a lot of home decor on sale. I love these white shag pillows! I currently have them on my living room couch as you can see in the below photo :).  The pink flamingo pillow I found at Michael’s Craft Store, and the banana leaf pillows are from Shein, but you can find similar ones from Target!

Couch Pillows

I hope you all have a great Memorial Day Weekend. I plan on going camping (well, I guess glamping because my parents have a camper with AC and showers, haha) at the lake about an hour from our house. The weather is supposed to be pretty bad this weekend, so hopefully I will have a little dry time to hit up the beach for a little while because I really need a tan! Haha. What are your Memorial Day Weekend plans? Let me know in the comments!

Valerie

How To Get Rid Of Dark Undereye Circles

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Happy Wednesday! We are SO close to the weekend. I know I have mentioned this before, but, I have been working a lot of overtime at my job lately. I am in the process of searching for a new car, so I need all the extra money I can get for a down payment. But all of this overtime has been making me extremely tired! You can really tell under my eyes. I have never really had an issue with under eye bags/dark circles until now (I guess that’s what happens when you get older?).

I decided to take action to find a product to prevent this. I’m going to share 3 things I started doing to help get rid of dark circles, bags, and fine lines:

Drink Water: I know this sounds super simple, but it’s the truth. I have noticed that when I drink the proper amount of water I need, I always feel and look a whole lot better (I can really tell a difference with my skin!).

Cooling Pack: I found an eye therapy gel bead face mask at dollar tree one day, and decided to give it a try. I let it set in my fridge for a few hours, then put it on my face while watching Netflix. The cooling sensation helps my strained eyes to relax, since I stare at a computer screen all day.

Try an eye mask: When VII Code contacted me about their Oxygen Eye Masks, I knew I had to give them a try! They sent me a box of 6 pairs of eye masks. But these aren’t your ordinary eye masks. These you can leave on for up to 8 hours! Which means you can put it on before bed, and go to sleep and take them off in the morning. This was the first thing that made me fall in love with them. When I get home from working overtime, I cook dinner, take a shower then head to bed. I don’t really have time to put on a mask and sit around for it to complete the process. The VII Code Oxygen Eye Mask saves me a lot of time!

The material of the mask is gel-like, and has a lot of essential vitamins, antioxidants, proteins, botanicals peptides and essential fatty acids that work together to provide your undereye everything it needs to be healthy and prevent tired eyes, dark circles and fine lines. The eye masks conform to the shape around your eye. You can can apply the eye mask 2-3 times a week, with 3 boxes (18 eye masks) needed for a full course of treatment. On the days you don’t use the eye mask, you can apply the cool therapy gel bead mask.

After applying the mask for the first time, my under eyes felt very moisturized and more awake. I could also tell the darkness under my eyes start to disappear (and that was only with the first treatment!). You can purchase the VII Code Oxygen Eye Mask from Amazon.

What are your remedies for getting rid of dark undereye circle? Let me know in the comments!

Valerie

This post was sponsored by VII Code. All opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that make Style Muse possible!