my beauty favorites + lark skin care

my beauty favorites + lark skin care

I have never had the same enthusiasm for makeup and beauty products as I have had for clothing and fashion. Not sure why. I can tell you all about what jeans to buy, but can’t help you with makeup tips. I always thought the 5-minute face was funny, because it takes me about 3 minutes: concealer, blush, mascara, done. A few years ago my hairstylist introduced me to the difference it can make when you fill in your brows and I’ve since added that to the routine.

Somehow, along the way, I have happened across a few products that I like.

st louis image consultant beauty favorites

L'oreal Elnett Hairspray

When you have naturally unruly hair and you want to try and keep it under control, you rely on hairspray. I think I read about this in one of those Allure Magazine “best of” issues. It really holds well and doesn’t look or feel crunchy. 

EltaMD Moisturizer with Sunscreen

To really protect your skin from the sun (so my dermatologist tells me), you have to use a sunscreen with zinc. Problem is, zinc smells funny and leaves white streaks, except for this one.

Chanel Le Volume mascara

I always subscribed to the idea that drugstore brands were just as good as department store brands, with less fancy packaging. Trying this mascara (because of a sample in a blogger goodie bag) proved me wrong. It really does make my lashes look longer and fuller and every other cliche. It’s crazy.

Make Up For Ever

When having new photos shot for my website earlier this year, my photographer gently suggested that I might want to wear some real makeup. I had previously just used drugstore coverup every once in awhile. I went to Sephora and had my skin tone matched to a Make Up For Ever foundation. It’s lightweight, easy to blend, and doesn’t feel like you’re wearing heavy foundation.

Suave Dry Shampoo

I know there are fancy dry shampoos, but I decided to try this one a few years back and haven’t felt a need for anything else. Maybe I’m wrong, like in the case of the mascara! I hate how long it takes to shower and get ready, so I try to only shower every other day. On off days, I spray this into the areas of my scalp that get oily and then refresh with a quick blow dry.

lark skin care

As I’ve tried to get into higher quality, more eco-conscious fashion, I’ve also starting taking a closer look at my beauty products and I have some new favorites. Lark Skin Care is produced right here in St. Louis by my friend Lisa Dolan and uses only completely natural ingredients. Lisa is an accomplished photographer, but started Lark when she was pregnant and trying to find products without chemicals. So far I’ve tried the Himalayan Salt and Coconut Body Scrub, the Orange and Clove Lotion bar, and the lip balm and they are all amazing. You also have to hear Lisa talk about how they were made and all the different uses for each product. How? Come to our joint event, the minimalist beauty + wardrobe workshop next Thursday, January 19th. It’s the perfect chance to reevaluate your routines and let go of some things that aren’t working for you.

Do you have any amazing beauty products I should know about? 

the minimalist beauty + wardrobe workshop

the minimalist beauty + wardrobe workshop

Was one of your New Year's resolutions to simplify? Join me and Lisa Dolan from Lark Skincare for a workshop in two weeks at roar. in Webster Groves. 

minimalist style st louis

It's going to be a small informal group, with lots of wine and great conversation. Lisa's going to tell you how to figure out your skin type, pare down your skincare routine, and will make you a (free) custom face mask. I'm going to tell you how to let go of all those clothes you've been holding onto, streamline your wardrobe, and change your shopping habits. If you haven't seen it, roar is a really cute event and co-working space in Webster, and we're excited to be hanging out there for the night. Go here to get your ticket(s)! Also, we're doing a fun giveaway today on Instagram - I’m giving away a mini-closet cleanse and Lisa is giving away a coconut scrub and lotion bar. Follow both of us (@mindfulcloset and @larkskinco) to get the details! We’ll choose a random winner on Monday. Good luck!

new year's eve trends

new year's eve trends

How did everyone do over the holidays? I had a great time with family, but I'm ready to get back to normal eating and sleeping and life!

Of course, there's still one big night left before the end of the year. The question is always whether to buy something new or wear something you own for New Year's Eve. Luckily, with rental services, you can wear a new-to-you gown without having to shell out hundreds of dollars for something you're probably not going to want to wear again. 

Here are a few of my picks for trends in evening wear, all available from Rent the Runway. 

(Click photos for links to items)

Cutouts: if you've been keeping up with your barre classes (uh...), you might feel brave enough to try one of these. Or not.

Jumpsuits are a fun way to be dressed up but still comfy. Do a jumpsuit with culotte pants and hit two trends at once. 

Off the shoulder has been big for both casual and dressy this year. Always helpful if you prefer a little arm coverage. 

Do you have big plans for New Year's Eve? What are you wearing? There's still time to order a rental from Rent the Runway, and if you use this link, you'll get $30 off your first rental. They're not paying me for this blog post, but I will get a credit if you sign up through the link! 

I'm pretty excited about my NYE plans - I'll be going to the STL Symphony New Year's Eve concert, and I'm going to be interviewed on the live broadcast. We'll be talking about orchestra fashion - if you're not sure what that is, make sure to tune in! ;) Listen to the live broadcast Saturday night at 7pm on 90.7 KWMU or online here

Happy New Year!

P.S. Have you signed up for my email list yet? Only one email a month, and this month, I'll be talking about some big plans I have for 2017, as well as events and sales. Sign up below. 

a 10 piece eileen fisher capsule wardrobe

a 10 piece eileen fisher capsule wardrobe

There are always different capsule wardrobe challenges going around the internet. In recent memory, there were 30x30 (30 pieces for 30 days), then Project 333 (33 pieces for 3 months), then the Unfancy capsule (37 pieces for 3 months). Currently, 10x10 (10 items for 10 days) is popular. Since I wanted to introduce you all to how versatile, practical, and useful Eileen Fisher clothing is, I thought I’d take it a little further and see how many outfits I could get with only 10 pieces of clothing.

As when I have chosen my own capsules (to see all my capsule wardrobe blog posts, go here), I started with more and edited it down to 10 items. I made sure to have basic tops (white tee, striped tee, and dressy shell) and bottoms (dark wash jeans and black pants). I wanted to have a versatile dress and lots of top layers that would go with every foundational piece for lots of combinations.

10 piece eileen fisher capsule wardrobe

Here are the 10 Eileen Fisher pieces: Sleeveless Silk Long Shell, Dolman Sleeved Linen TunicLong Sleeve Jersey Top, Long Draped Open Cardigan, Fisher Project Wool Poncho Top, Fine Merino Birdseye Angle Front Jacket, Wool Blend Twill Graph Serape, Slim Ponte Pant, Washable Silk Dress, and Soft Stretch Skinny Jean

You may have noticed that the prices on these items are higher than some I might usually post. As I mentioned in a previous blog post, this is an amazing company. When you pay a higher price for an Eileen Fisher item, you're paying for the fact that these are classic pieces made with quality fabrics that won't be out of style in six months. You're paying for the fact that the items are made with textiles that are produced with less waste and fewer chemicals. You're paying for the fact that this company actually tracks the supply chain of what its products are made of to ensure that when they say it's organic cotton, it's actually organic cotton.  You're paying for the fact that this company is committed to human rights and not only monitors its factories for violations but is beginning to do cell phone surveys of workers to allow them a voice.

There are also many ways to get discounted Eileen Fisher pieces. I've found pieces on eBay, at consignment stores, Nordstrom Rack and on sale at the Eileen Fisher store. If you can shift your buying from 4 fast fashion pieces to 1 discounted ethically-made piece, you'll be doing good at the same time as you reduce your overwhelm from excess in your closet. 

But back to the outfits! All in all, I came up with 24, a good month's worth of looks for both casual and dressy work and play occasions. 


To see a 10 piece capsule in person and get tips on how to style Eileen Fisher pieces, come to our special event at the Plaza Frontenac Eileen Fisher store THIS Saturday, December 17th from noon-3pm. We’ll have light refreshments and lots of good people and clothes. See you there!

P.S. Just in case you were wondering, Eileen Fisher isn't paying me for this post or this event, I just really believe in the company. P.P.S. This post contains affiliate links. If you click on them, I get a few cents, but it costs you nothing. I'm raking it in - in four years of blogging, I've made a total of $246.36 - that's $5.13 per month!  ;) 

mindful closet gift certificates

mindful closet gift certificates

Do you know anyone who stares into their closet (full of clothes) and says "I have nothing to wear"? Do you need to buy that person a gift?

Instead of giving more stuff, give the gift of more space. If you buy a gift certificate for yourself or someone else before December 31st, you’ll get an extra $50 credit if you spend $300, an extra $100 if you spend $400, and an extra $200 if you spend $500. Basically, you could get a closet cleanse and mindful shopping trip for almost 30% off. Email to purchase.

mindful closet personal styling gift certificate

i'm not perfect

i'm not perfect

As if anyone was in doubt… So, right about the time I put up that last blog post (about, ahem, not buying if it’s not on your list), I started feeling bored with all my black. Maybe I jinxed myself, maybe I was bored, maybe I should have-I don’t know-taken a nap instead. But I found myself between appointments killing time by stopping by Avalon. I saw this cool vintage sweater, and although I did give quite a bit of thought to the purchase, it was NOT on my list. But I bought it, and it was secondhand, and it was $18, and I really like it. Everything else I'm wearing were super mindful, wear-all-the-time purchases. It's not the end of the world.

saint louis personal stylist

In the meantime, I'm going to enjoy the fact that there's no black in this outfit ;) 

(Sweater: vintage, tank: Eileen Fisher, jeans: Banana Republic, boots: Blondo)

P.S. This tank I'm wearing from Eileen Fisher gets worn about twice a week. Pricy, but so worth it. Check it out at the Plaza Frontenac Eileen Fisher store on December 17th from 12-3pm and get my take on how to style it. 

avoid impulse buys - shop from a list

avoid impulse buys - shop from a list

To curb impulse buys, the best thing you can do is shop from a list. Think about it - what happens when you go to the grocery store without a list? You end up with random things that sounded good in the moment but don’t necessarily fit together to make a whole meal. When you meal plan and shop with a list, you actually buy the things you need to make a recipe. It’s the same with clothes. Many people wonder why they have a closet full of clothes and nothing to wear, but it’s this - it’s like having a pantry full of ingredients but no plan. If you buy clothes without thought to how they fit into the rest of your wardrobe, you’re going to end up with a bunch of random stuff.

how to avoid impulse buys

Here’s what to do instead: define your style (pick a recipe), declutter (throw away that rotting head of broccoli), take stock of what's left (what’s in your pantry),  and make a list of what’s missing. You might get rid of all the pants that don’t fit and find that you have plenty of jeans, but you’re only left with one pair of pants that’s appropriate for work. Put it on the list. Maybe every time you try to wear a dress in the winter, you don’t have the appropriate tights. Put them on the list. The next time you end up in front of a clearance rack, you’ll have a plan. If you find well-fitting work pants on sale, go for it. They’re on the list, you must need them! If they're not on the list, you can be pretty sure that you're being swayed by the bargain and that item will end up in the purge pile the next time around. 

Do you use a list when shopping - grocery or otherwise? Do you think it helps?

P.S. My other tip to avoid impulse buys.