Thanksgiving Outfit Inspiration

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Necklace: Mala Prayer // Dress: Target // OTK Boots: Charlotte Russe (under $32!) // Clutch: Similar // Ring: Similar

I can’t believe that Thanksgiving is next week! I feel like this year has flown by. One of my favorite things to do every holiday season is pick out what I plan on wearing. I love to look cute and somewhat dressed up on Thanksgiving, but I also like to feel comfortable (there’s a 90% chance I will fall asleep after eating while wearing this, so it has to be comfy, haha!).

My go-to is always a simple dress with statement accessories. I found this dress at Target the other day. As soon as I walked into the dress section, the color drew me in. I knew it was the perfect color for Thanksgiving. I was worried that the lace would be too itchy, but it’s totally not! It’s also pretty roomy (so after eating two Thanksgiving meals, it shouldn’t show too bad, baha!). I paired it with a pair of OTK boots (currently under $32!) and my favorite leopard clutch.

For my statement accessories, I wore the Ajita tassel necklace from Mala Prayer. I loved the color and the detail on the beads. Each piece is handmade (which I absolutely LOVE!). I love supporting brands that give back, and Mala Prayer is all about empowering women. All sales made through Mala Prayer will provide female entrepreneurs with a microfinance loan, which they can invest in their business, home or community. You can read more about their story, and what a Mala is HERE! Mala Prayer is giving a discount to Styled Muse readers! Just use code VALERIEHELTON20 at checkout to get 20% off your entire purchase!

I think the next necklaces I want to add my collection are the Iona and the Dirillo. There’s just something about white marble and spotted beads that I always go towards!

Do you have your Thanksgiving outfit planned out yet? Let me know in the comments!

Thanks for reading!

Valerie

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

Fall Jacket

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Jacket (similar)  //  Top (similar)  //  Jeans  //  Necklace (similar)  //  Clutch  //  Sunglasses  //  Booties (similar)

Happy Wednesday! I had such a busy weekend. We went to the lake with my parents, and when we got back we went apple and pumpkin picking with some of our friends! We went to Eckert’s in Belleville, IL and it is by far my favorite place to go in the fall! If you are ever in the area, make sure you make a stop there!

Fall is my favorite season, and October is my favorite time of year. I love doing all the fall things like apple and pumpkin picking, drinking apple cider, and finding my Halloween costume. I love it even more than Christmas! I think I picked more apples than I really needed, but that means I can make more apple pies and caramel apples! If you have any other recipes for apples, let me know in the comments!

We took these photos while we were there, and I had to show you guys this amazing jacket! I first found this jacket while the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale was going on. I ordered it immediately, which I’m glad I did because it sold out! It’s still currently sold out, BUT I found an almost identical one at an even better price point!

The day we decided to go apple picking, it was pretty chilly, so I wore this turtleneck underneath with these jeans and booties. I added my favorite accessory: a statement necklace! I found this exact one on clearance at Target, so it is no longer available online. But I did find one very similar one here! Also, my staple leopard fold over clutch is back in stock, so make sure you grab it before it’s sold out again! I of course wore my new favorite pair of sunglasses that I found at TJ Maxx. I cannot seem to find them online ANYWHERE, but I found an identical pair!

I know I haven’t talked about my boyfriend much, so I included a photo of him and myself! His name is Devon, and like most men, I basically had to force him to take this photo with me, haha! He’s the one that takes all my outfit photos, so he’s more used to being behind the camera. We have been together for 7 years and lived together for 4 years, and I wouldn’t have it any other way!

What are you favorite fall activities? Let me know in the comments! Thanks for reading!

Valerie

Affordable Workwear

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Top: Similar & Similar (My Fav) // Pants: Nordstrom // Bag: Similar // Shoes // Ring: Charlotte Russe

Happy Wednesday! I think today is the first day it finally feels like fall in St. Louis. Unfortunately, it won’t last long. It’s going to be 88 degrees again on Saturday, gross! This weekend we are heading up to the campground where my parents have their camper. They are throwing a huge Halloween festival with pumpkin carving contests, chili cook off, trick or treating and a haunted hayride! I’m excited to put my costume together and share with you all! Make sure to follow along on my Insta stories this weekend to see the full look! What do you plan on dressing up as for Halloween? Let me know in the comments!

I realized that I have never done a post about workwear, and decided that it was time! I luckily have a very casual job where we can wear yoga and sweatpants to work. That is one of the huge perks of my job! If I’m feeling extremely tired and don’t feel like dressing up, I can throw on a pair of workout pants and a sweatshirt and run out the door (after grabbing my coffee of course 😉 ). But I know a lot of you don’t have that option and are required to wear something a bit more business casual, so this post is for you!

I absolutely love this top for work! This exact one is sold out, but I tagged two similar ones! This one is my absolute favorite, and I have it in black! It’s on sale right now for $32! Of course if you want to hide your arms a bit more, you can throw a blazer over it.

I still love wearing white pants all year round (you can read my post about wearing white after Labor Day HERE). But of course you can always add black or gray ones to feel a bit more business casual!

This is the perfect bag for work! It holds so much, while looking the business part! This exact one is sold out, but I tagged a similar Kate Spade one! It even comes in black!

These shoes are perfect for warmer days, but once it starts getting cold you may want to wear a pair that covers your toes. I love these pumps!

What is your dress attire at work? Let me know in the comments! Have a great week, and thanks for reading!

Valerie

Wearing White After Labor Day

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Top: Similar // Jeans: Nordstrom // Earrings: SUGARFIX // Shoes: JustFab // Clutch: Similar

Happy Wednesday! Even though this is a short week, it still feels like it has been super long! I can’t wait to have a relaxing weekend (the past few have been pretty busy for me). Last weekend I went camping with my family and friends for Labor Day (my parents have a really nice camper on a lake out in the country, so I guess it was more like glamping? Haha!), and we had so much fun! The weather was perfect. I can’t wait to go back once the leaves start changing!

One fashion “rule” I seriously despise is no wearing white after Labor Day. I never really understood that. But rules were made to be broken, right? 😉 I love wearing white jeans with a fall sweater and booties (my go-to during the fall season). I know the above look is a bit more summery, but summer isn’t over, right? I just had to get one more outfit out of my system before I start wearing darker colors, haha!

I bought this off the shoulder top from Shein, but it’s currently sold out so I tagged a similar one that looks almost identical. I ordered quite a few items from Shein, and I’m going to give you a review on what I thought about the website, the sizing, and if you should order from them. The post will be up next week, so stay tuned!

I bought the white jeans from the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale last year, and wear them so much! The earrings are Sugarfix at Target, and they have so many colors! I bought the clutch from Saved By The Dress, but it’s sold out so I tagged a similar one.

One of my obsessions lately has been JustFab! The shoes I’m wearing in the photos are actually from there. I have been using it for a few months now to see how I like it and to give you a review of JustFab. It’s $39.95 a month for the VIP, but if you decide to skip that month, you don’t have to pay anything! The $39.95 goes towards your order. Right now they are having a sale where you can get your first pair for only $10! You can’t beat getting a pair of high quality shoes for under $40. Over the weekend they had a 50% off sale, so almost every pair was $20! I skipped this month because If I buy another pair of shoes, I think my boyfriend might flip, haha! But they not only have shoes, they carry handbags and clothing as well! Make sure you go HERE to check it out for yourself!

Do you wear white after Labor Day? Let me know in the comments!

Thanks for reading!

Valerie

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!

Fall Beauty Items:

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Zulily not only has clothing items, but they have beauty items as well! All of these items are under $20! You can’t beat finding Nars lipstick for $12.99. I rounded up some of my favorite beauty items that would complete your fall makeup look. Which one is your favorite? I love the color of that eyeshadow!

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! 

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!

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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