Sneakers, serum, Winter colors sale - une femme d'un certain âge

What’s good this week: sneakers & serums & sales, oh my!

Here’s a little end-of-week roundup with a few of my top picks…


The new fall collection has landed at Sole Bliss, including these cute & comfy “star” sneakers (gifted). If you’re not familiar with Sole Bliss, they specialize in shoes that accommodate wide feet and bunions. (Helen Mirren is a fan.)

The footbed is well cushioned, and the upper leather is soft but substantial. I love the side zip on these, which means I don’t have to mess with laces every time. Even though I don’t have wide feet, I find these comfortable and well-fitting.

There are lots of colors and styles available now. And in addition to sneakers, they also make a wide range of styles from pumps to loafers to boots, all with the same comfort design.

And Sole Bliss has kindly offered my readers 15% off with code FEMME15 !

Shipping and returns are FREE in the US. If you’re unsure of sizing, their customer service folks can help you choose the best size. Don’t forget to use code FEMME15 when you check out!

Brightening serum

I don’t remember why I initially decided to try this Vitamin C Brightening Serum, but I’m now on my second bottle. I’ve really noticed a difference in my skin since using this one; it’s clearer and smoother.

I was a bit hesitant about trying another Vitamin C product after a bad experience with a different one while I was in London in February. It was something I’d picked up on the recommendation of City Pharma staff in Paris last fall. I hadn’t really used it yet, but the container was small so I packed it with my travel skincare. I applied a few drops per the instructions, and woke up in the middle of the night with a fiery itching and swollen face. It was like a very bad sunburn. Fortunately it resolved after a couple of days, but I threw away the rest of the bottle.

This Sunday Riley serum, on the other hand, has caused NO irritation, but seems to be quite effective. So I’m sticking with it for now. I use it mornings, and every other evening (alternating with my prescription Retin-A). After cleansing, before moisturizer.

Yes, it’s cruelty-free too.

What’s on sale…

Many of you Winters have mentioned that you’re having a hard time finding your colors this season. So I thought I’d share a few items in your colors that are currently marked down.

Winters, here’s one of your greens! J.Crew currently has 30% off full-priced items with code SHOPFALL. This dress-up-dress-down top is offered in sizes XX-Small to 3X.

Online, this looks like a perfect match for the “Persian Blue” in the Winter palette. This unlined boiled wool topcoat is the perfect weight for transitional seasons or winter in milder climates. It’s available in Misses sizes 00-24, as well as Petite and Tall sizes.

(I purchased a prior season version of this coat in a yam color, and wore in frequently in cooler months. I just picked up this new version in the Dusty Ivory color and love it even more! The earlier version had raw edge seams on the outside; the new version has finished interior seams for a more refined look.)

This is the same style cardigan I have in leopard print, but this Fuchsia is one of those colors so many Winters look smashing in. Sizes XX-Small to 3X.

I’m seeing a lot of burgundy offered this season. Winters, you want your burgundy to be more blue-based, which this sweater jacket seems to be. It’s offered in Misses, Petite, Plus, and Plus Petite sizes in several colors. Talbot’s currently has a Buy 1 Get 1 50% off promotion running.

This bright tee would coordinate nicely with the sweater jacket, or look great on its own.

So this one’s for those of you out there who love leopard print, but find most leopard prints too warm for your Winter coloring. (Ignore that yellow top, and wear it with magenta instead…) The coat is available in Misses sizes XXS-XXL, and Petites. It’s 30% off with code FRIENDS.

Stay in touch.

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  1. Cathy Taylor
    September 16, 2022 / 5:14 am

    Hi Susan,
    I read your posts and have purchased several items on your recommendation. My question is regarding seasonal colors. I am pretty certain that I am a light spring, however, my veins are blue and when draped with bright orange and bright pink, the pink looks best. This indicates cool undertones. I am fair skinned with some freckles, blue eyes and light blonde hair with gold tones. I look really good in coral. Confused!!! Any thoughts?

    • Susan Blakey
      September 16, 2022 / 6:03 am

      Hi Cathy, without actually going through a draping process, it can be hard to determine someone’s season. Just FTR, most of us have blue veins, whether our season is warm or cool. 😉

    • JJay
      September 16, 2022 / 5:03 pm

      Hi Cathy,
      Your coloring sounds similar to mine. I was a redhead, now blonde, which is gray for blue-eyed redheads. I have a closet-full of blue, teal, and denim, plus coral. Blue goes well with coral and some soft oranges. I love it — lots of options. (Without over-thinking labels, you could look at one of Susan’s shots of the color charts. Also watch what she wears.) Personally, I don’t like colors that look like skin from a distance. Tans, beigjes, and that new pink-beige = yuck.
      — JJay

  2. Patricia Schultz
    September 16, 2022 / 6:00 am

    Well, that resulted in a spending spree at Talbots! Hope you get some credit for it, Susan.

  3. SoSuSam
    September 16, 2022 / 6:57 am

    I have had bad experiences with vitamin C products, too. Glad to hear there are some that are easier on skin while still producing good results. As for those sneakers, I love the stars! I’ve been intrigued by Sole Bliss…maybe now’s the time to explore them (with your helpful discount code–thanks!). I have very cranky feet (not wide, tho) and last spring I discovered shoes (sneakers, sandals, and shoes, to be exact) that I adore: Deckers x Lab (they own Hoka running shoes). Their shoes are soooo comfortable. But hard to find–I think Zappos carries a few styles, but the rest you can only get on the Deckers x Lab website. And they’re expensive. (And run slightly big.) Yet for someone with unhappy feet like mine, they’re worth it. That said, as an incorrigible sneakers addict, I must now go investigate Sole Bliss…!

  4. Roseanna
    September 16, 2022 / 9:01 am

    I bought an unlined top coat and brought it up a notch by having it lined including piping around the lining. Well worth it.

  5. Mary Ann Fitch
    September 16, 2022 / 4:09 pm

    I left a message saying I bought a pair of Sole Bliss and they ran very large in the foot bed. I had to return and
    was not happy. You did not post my message.

  6. Robyn
    September 17, 2022 / 3:55 am

    Susan you do such a lovely round up of suggestions, but is me or… I’m a winter and if I find a color I like the style doesn’t suit me or if I find a style I like the color doesn’t suit me. For example the J Crew cardigan, I have a black and navy from previous years. This year I was looking for something in a berry tone. or a cool burgundy like the Talbots cardigan. Fuchsia is a little too out there for me. But, the Talbots’ cardigan isn’t my style and rather warm for southeastern falls. In general Talbots’ clothes fit rather oddly on me, but that’s a tale for another day. Does anyone else have a problem getting color and style to match? I’ve begun looking in the mens section they tend to have more cooler colors.

    • Susan Blakey
      September 17, 2022 / 6:23 am

      Hi Robin, yes, I think this is true for any season. My suggestion is to be selective, but when you find something that’s both the right color and style, snap it up.

  7. Christine Thomas-O'Meally
    September 20, 2022 / 10:08 am

    I had that same experience with a Vitamin C serum and haven’t used it since! I was getting ready for a performance and put it on and said to my husband about five minutes later, “My face feels hot,” and he said, “I shouldn’t wonder. It’s bright red!” I immediately washed it off – my primer that night was neosporin (which worked).

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