So…funny story about this top: a few weeks ago a family friend remarked how much she liked it, so I gave her mine. And almost immediately experienced a pang of remorse, thinking about the ways I could have styled it. So I ordered another one. (Pauline, upon hearing the story, generously offered to send it gratis.) The jeans are from Madewell. These are the “slim boyjean” style, which are a nice alternative to skinny jeans, especially in warmer weather. Madewell stores will hem full-priced denim at no charge, so I had these taken up a couple of inches. Still like to roll them, though.
So the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale is now open to all! The Theory top above is one of the items I’ve purchased, and will show you more soon. Below are my picks so far from the sale. While I did spot a lot of “fun” pieces, I’ve tried to edit my selections to those items that I think could be real wardrobe builders and work horses. These tend to be the things that sell out most quickly, too. I’ve also updated my “Things I Love” page with sale selections, and will continue to update if I see new items added to the sale that might be of interest. Without further ado….
SHOES, BAGS, ACCESSORIES
BEAUTY AND PAMPERING
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Karen is a woman with her ear to the ground when it comes to style and beauty, and always has some fabulous products on her radar. She also has a thrifty nature, and looks for the most bang for her beauty buck. The first product she shared (and gifted me with a full-sized bottle!) was this Yon-Ka Paris Dry Skin Toner. I can’t believe I wasn’t familiar with this brand, as judging by this toner, it’s wonderful. The formula is alcohol-free, contains essential oils, and has a wonderful invigorating fragrance. Spray it on after cleansing and before the rest of your skin care routine. You can also use to freshen makeup and add a bit of glow. I like to spritz on a bit when I get home from work just to recharge my batteries and soothe skin that’s been in air-conditioning all day.
She gave me some samples of this Revision Intellishade SPF 45 Matte
tinted moisturizer recommended by her dermatologist, which I liked very much. It has a decent percentage of barrier sunscreens, and goes on very nicely. If you need more coverage, it also works well under foundation. The finish isn’t shiny, but it isn’t what I think of as “matte” either… just very natural looking. The color blends right in to skin and avoids that ashy look that barrier sunscreens sometimes cause.
LOVE this stuff!!
Another product she pulled out of her bag of tricks was this wonderful facial oil from L’Oreal. After trying this I went right out and bought some! It’s very lightly fragranced, wonderfully moisturizing, and really does make your skin glow (not an oily gleam). Use instead of or in addition to your regular moisturizer. I’m tempted to try the eye cream from the same line when my current bit runs out.
As much as we tend to agonize over our hair, Karen is right when she says a really good hair stylist/colorist is “worth their weight in gold.” She explained that for some months now she’s really wanted to achieve the same light blonde color I have, and after going to multiple colorists and not being satisfied with the results, she decided to come to the source. I had a color appointment scheduled with Brian for this last Sunday chez moi. I asked him whether he’d have time to do some highlights for Karen too and he was happy to accommodate.
I really enjoy our appointments. While he works, we catch up on what’s been going on in our lives, I make us cappuccinos, and we look at stuff on Pinterest. Every other visit or so he also cuts le Monsieur’s hair, which is very convenient for us. Between our work schedules and not always having weekend childcare, trying to get to a salon regularly can be tricky. It was so much fun to have Karen join in! We had a blast.
Karen has a beautiful head of thick hair, and needed a lot of sections done. She mentioned that she especially wanted the highlights around her face, so Brian focused on that area first…
Doesn’t she have the most gorgeous bone structure??
Once all of the sections were done, it was time to let the color “bake” for a while under a portable heat bonnet.
Brian explained to us that the base color is critical. The overall effect will be a result of the interplay between the base and highlights. If the base color isn’t harmonious with skin tone, the highlights and overall color can look “off”. It’s also important to get the levels of contract between base and highlights just right: too much contrast can look harsh, too little can wash you out. It really is an art as much as a science. (Some women are able to get great results and are quite satisfied with coloring hair themselves; I’ve not been one of those. I tried it for a while but after a some truly disastrous results that required a colorist’s correction, I’ve left it to the pros.)
My base color (wet hair).
After my color and highlights were done, Brian trimmed and shaped the cut.
Fine hair can be tricky…Brian knows how to cut in layers for volume and movement. I have to be honest: after decades of fighting with my hair and mostly being–if not entirely unhappy–less than thrilled with how it looked, I’m now happy with it. Happy with the color, happy with texture and style. Sure, I sometimes wish for thicker hair that would look better when grown out longer, but this is what I have now, and it’s good.
After five hours of Hair, we were pretty hungry and dashed off for a late lunch. Next time I’ll have more snacks on hand. But on the way out, we stopped to snap a few quick “After” pictures on the front porch…
A couple of Southern California Blondes…Better Living Through Chemistry.
Selfie With Stylist!
Brian is also an accomplished makeup artist. He created and runs Makeover Workshop, where he teaches makeup tips and techniques, as well as offering makeup products he’s personally developed. If you’d like more information about Makeover Workshop, the makeup or his styling services, you can contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org .
Karen also brought her Beauty Bag Of Tricks (some favorite products and finds) to share with me, and I’ll share those with you tomorrow. She always picks some winners!
Do you have a regular hair stylist? Or are you a DIY’er? Have you reached a point where you’re happy with your hair color and style?
For those who like this style of sandal, but not the Arche price, you might be pleased to know that the Munro look-alike is marked way down for the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale. (Also available in Narrow and Wide widths.)
I’ll be posting a lot of new sale picks on Friday when the sale opens to everyone, so please do check back.
Do you have a favorite “look-alike” item?
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