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    I Spent a Week Doing My Beauty Routine Like a Celebrity—Here’s What Happened

    To manifest my best 2021, I recently fell into a very strange hole of Pinterest. The images are pretty standard (cute beauty flatlays, modern home decor, of-the-moment fashion), but it’s more about the way users engage with the content that makes it so interesting. Basically, these young people use these images to, in a way, manifest these beautiful lives and pretend that’s how they live. Forget yearly vision boards; they make daily vision boards. “Sundays are for self-care” is one I saw a lot, and it was literally a self-care mood board… for one singular random Sunday. I was baffled. Is this why I end up hungover, in bed all day, with a mere one glass of water under my belt by the time the clock strikes 5 p.m.? Perhaps I was doing it all wrong. So in the effort of getting my sh*t together, I tried it. I put together the most extensive mood board I could think of in order to manifest my dream life (or at least, just one really good week). And as it turned out, my entire dream week was filled with luxury beauty; self-care out the wazoo; many Diptyque candles; and fresh, natural looks. Sound like a Hollywood starlet to you?
    I watched dozens of celebrity beauty routine videos last summer, and I took away a lot of product recommendations. But what I didn’t embark on was the actual routines, which happened to look a lot like the mood boards I’d hoped to achieve. So, I commenced a journey to get in the minds of the rich and famous and copy their daily beauty routines… here’s how it went:

    The Routine: 
    When I first started this journey, I figured I’d set up a daily routine and follow it to a T. Celebrities follow routines, right? In actuality, I realized celebrities don’t have the time or attention to give to these drawn-out routines they might share in an Instagram post or YouTube video. Instead, they change up their routines daily based on what they have going on (besides the basics of brushing their teeth, washing their face, and drinking lots of water, of course). I tailored each day to what was happening in my life, instead of a blanket set of steps. However, there were a few things I really focused or honed-in on:

    What I Didn’t Do
    I didn’t go out and buy thousands of dollars worth of luxury items to make this challenge closer to the actual routines of people making eight times my salary. I used what I already had (which, to be quite fair, is a heck of a lot because it’s my hobby and my job) and made do without making a single purchase… which we’ll get into later. 

    What I Loved

    Morning baths
    I lived basically my entire life without a bathtub until my current apartment, and I make very good use of it. But I never thought of the idea of taking a bath in the morning. Normally, I’m using the bath to wind down and help myself get ready for bed, so it never made sense to try it in the morning. However, this is something I’ll be implementing into my routine weekly. There’s nothing like waking up knowing you get to soak in a warm bath. It made me want to get up early more than anything, so it was perfect after morning workouts. I hopped into a bath of muscle-relaxing bath salts for a quick reading session to start my day, and it was arguably the most lovely, relaxing moment of my entire week.

    I always do a double-cleanse if I’m wearing makeup, but in the morning, I typically go with a gentle, hydrating wash to get rid of any oil from sleeping or remove any retinol or actives from the night before. But I’ve seen so many celebrities use a cleansing oil in the morning to really boost their radiance and hydration first thing. I was a little nervous to try it with my combination skin, but it was lovely. I tried it with a few different oils, and you definitely have to make sure you use something that completely rinses off without leaving a film on your skin. My current favorite is the Elemis Pro-Collagen Cleansing Balm. 

    Morning Masking
    This is something I already do in my routine, but I have not kept up with it since quarantine began. I’ve had the “I’m wasting my masks” mentality because I’m not going anywhere, but one of the main experiments I tried with this process was actually using my expensive, “special” products instead of letting them sit in my apartment collecting more dust. Sheet masks are a recent favorite of mine because I use them essentially as an extra serum in the morning. I love really hydrating and soothing ones before I go in with my moisturizer and SPF, and it makes my skin so radiant before I apply makeup. 

    Facial Massage
    I always use my NuFACE Mini Toning Device in the mornings (about four to five times a week), but I almost always do facial massage at night. I find it really relaxing and a great way to make oils and moisturizers sink in better. But I’ve officially converted to the morning massage after this experiment. For one, your face looks amazing after a short massage, and while it’s temporary, I might as well have that glow and definition for my morning Zoom call than right before I plop my face on a pillow. But it’s also a very short, relaxing step I can add to my skincare routine. 
    While I was using an oil cleanser in the morning, I wasn’t doing my NuFACE regimen because it’s not recommended to wash with an oily cleanser because it can disrupt the microcurrent. So, this facial massage basically took place of my NuFACE routine. I think I’ll switch on and off between facial massages and NuFACE from now on.

    Foam rolling
    I am the perfect candidate for a massage (wouldn’t we all say that though?). I hunch my back at my desk all day; I don’t get enough sleep; I push my muscles a little too hard sometimes; and I’m a constant ball of stress who fears being deemed weak so I hide it and it manifests through physical things like a clenched jaw, tight shoulders, and hard fists. (As you can tell, I’m also a perfect candidate for therapy!) I can’t get a massage right now though, so I recently purchased a small foam roller I could use in the meantime. This challenge was the kick in the butt I needed to finally start doing it, and I noticed an immediate improvement in my posture, my muscles, and my stress levels, which is why it’s now a part of my beauty routine. I’ll do just about anything to help my stressed-out skin, and that includes anything I can do to alleviate the daily anxiety.

    Facial steaming
    I had never steamed by face on my own until recently, but it’s one of my favorite parts of a facial. After trying it, I will gladly be implementing it into my weekly routine. Again, it’s relaxing and alleviates stress, but I also noticed my skincare sank in better, and I was glowier than ever.

    What I Didn’t

    Body skincare routine
    I typically do my bodycare at night, but I wanted to try it out in the mornings after watching an absurd number of celebrity beauty routine videos. I followed my baths with an in-shower moisturizer, a body serum, and a body moisturizer. I enjoyed it, but I actually find this ritual much more relaxing in the evenings with my skincare routine. I also just simply don’t have time to do this every single day, but a few times a week, it’s a great treat. 

    Dry brushing
    I’m not new to dry brushing, but I’m new to being consistent about it. I always forget that I own it, and it never seems like the right time before I shower to take the time to do it. I made it a point to dry brush at least three times this week, and to be quite honest,  I noticed very little results. Was my skin softer? Yes, but I get the same results using my favorite in-shower scrub. I enjoyed it a lot the day I shaved, but other than that, this is something I’ll continue to keep in my shower and likely forget to use often. (However, I will say that my very good friend said dry brushing her legs daily basically saved her from ingrown hairs, so I’m going to try it on my bikini area this summer!)

    Low-maintenance makeup
    This was a new one for me. I enjoy the art of makeup. I love following eyeshadow trends and trying new shades and textures. I look at beauty as an accessory (TBH, sometimes clothes even act as an accessory to my beauty looks). Celebrities, on the other hand, are a lot more natural when they’re doing their own makeup. They do the bare minimum to look put-together and polished. So, I gave it a shot. I did a basic 5ish-minute makeup routine for glowy skin, complete with concealer all over the face, cream blush, a light dusting of powder, brow gel, mascara, and a little bronzer. 
    I can’t say I’ll never wear a natural look when I’m in a rush or just feeling like it that day ever again, but I missed my fun looks this week. A lot. 

    Doing an extra-long routine
    While I love the time I spend at the end of the night on my skincare, it’s not practical for me to keep up with this all the time. Plus, my skin doesn’t need that all the time. In fact, using too many products constantly overwhelms my skin, clogging my pores and causing breakouts. But once in a while, it’s a self-care step I enjoy. On the days I fully indulged in my skincare, I went full force ahead with double cleansing, multi-masking, peel pads or retin-A depending on the day, toner, serums galore, moisturizer, oil, and even a sleeping night mask if I really felt into it. But on a normal night, I’ll likely just go with double-cleansing, my retin-A (or my weekly AHA peel), toner, one serum, and moisturizer. 


    I turned my beauty routine into self-care rituals
    I recognize that I often glide through my beauty routines, thinking of it as a chore instead of a time to slow down and enjoy myself. Most of the days this week, I lit candles, turned on music or an audiobook, drank a cup of tea or coffee, and used that time to really treat myself. Focusing on myself in those little moments is something I will gladly take into my daily life–regardless of my Hollywood star status. 

    I prefer to have fun with my makeup routine
    Every day I put on fun eye makeup or a bright lip or a new blush, I have a pep in my step. I’m giddy when I can sit down and play with my makeup. And in this routine, I didn’t really do that. Sure, celebrities get all dolled up for events, so I understand why they wouldn’t want to in their day-to-day lives. But as someone stuck in a tiny apartment during a pandemic, my “special event” is going to pick up the mail downstairs, and it warrants a look. 

    Beauty can feel luxurious regardless of how much you spend
    While I definitely have a few luxury and high-end products in my collection, I also have tons of inexpensive, drugstore options too, and using them felt just as nice as the ones I spent quadruple the price on. I love to splurge and invest in beauty products, but to feel like a celebrity, you don’t have to pay the price tag. Instead, I opt for products that give me those same feelings: nice packaging, lovely textures, pretty branding, ease-of-use, high-quality, and good results.  More

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    PSA: Kristin Ess Just Launched 36 (!) New Products at Target

    When I started my job at The Everygirl, I really wanted to fit in. I was a mere intern, and I appreciated the team so much. I watched every video on our YouTube channel, scoured everyone’s personal Instagrams, and read as many articles as humanly possible. (I had a wild amount of time on my hands then.) And one of the first things I noticed was the affinity our team had for Kristin Ess haircare. I immediately got in on it, and after trying my first product (the magical Blow Dry Mist–still a product I use today!), I was a believer. Kristin Ess’s haircare line is full of trendy, high-quality products at a fraction of the cost you’d spend in a salon. Plus, they’re all available to add to your next Target pick-up order. What more could you want? Oh, I know: new products. And KE is here to bring that dream to fruition with a new line of 36 (!! yep!) products that’ll leave you looking refreshed and special for every Zoom meeting, social distanced hangout, and at-home date night you could think of. Don’t worry: we pulled together every new product so you can shop straight from your couch.

    Perfect for zhuzhing up second (or fifth, who’s to say)-day hair or adding a little sparkle to your typical style. 

    Kristin Ess
    The Pearl Slide

    This looks like nothing, but its actually my most anticipated new accessory! Slide it onto any hair tie or elastic to spice up every ponytail, braid, and half-up do you try!

    Color Conditioners
    These are a quarantine dream. If you’re stuck at home and bored with your hair color, these temporary conditioners add a touch of muted color. Plus, they’re also great for touching up your salon color at home. It gently deposits dye to the hair through an ultra-softening, moisturizing conditioner that is free of ammonia and peroxide, making it a much healthier way to color your hair at home. 

    Liters + Minis
    With these liters, you will never run out of your favorite Kristin Ess shampoo and conditioners.  More

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    10 Pieces Fashion Girls Are Wearing at Home This Season

    It has now been 10+ months of gushing over tie-dye, jogger pants, and cozy knit. I don’t know if it’s the inner Carrie Bradshaw wannabe in me, but if I can’t get a change of scenery (thanks to staying at home), I at least want a change of wardrobe. It looks like the fashion bloggers and style stars are with me; the new year brought new trends that are still comfy enough to wear at home or updated versions of the items we’ve been lounging in since March. If you’re ready for a wardrobe upgrade too (or just want some seasonal trends you’ll actually wear), keep reading for the pieces fashion girls are wearing at home this season.
    1. Neutral bike shorts

    Bike shorts are here, and they’re better than ever. Not only are they extremely versatile and one of our favorite items to work out in, but in 2020, they became a wardrobe staple outside of the gym (or, you know, the yoga mat on your living room floor). In 2021, find them in neutral and monochrome colors instead of the bold prints we saw in the summer, and make them weather-appropriate with your go-to outerwear and waterproof boots.

    2. Fitted bodysuits

    Wardrobes that were once full of oversized sweatsuits at the beginning of stay-at-home have transitioned into more fitted silhouettes and body-hugging materials. The best part? Bodysuits can be just as comfortable as the same tee you’ve been wearing for months. Wear it tucked into denim or sweatpants and under a blazer for Zoom calls.

    3. Colorful Knitwear

    So the weather (and groundhog) still says winter, but fashion girls are clearly ready for spring (aren’t we all?). Personally, I’m longing for colors like baby blue, pastel pink, and light yellow to brighten up OOTDs. To work with the cold temperatures, style stars are opting for warm knits in spring colors. For bonus trend points, opt for colorful knit in sporty styles like a half-zip.

    4. Plaid button-ups

    Is it just my Instagram feed, or has an oversized plaid button-up become the most popular item this season? It’s like Blair Waldorf’s headband’s younger, cooler, and more casual cousin. The casual shirt could go lumberjack chic or I-Woke-Up-Like-This glam, depending on what you wear with it. Throw it over your sweatpants and a tee for a cozy outfit, or dress it up with jeans, booties, and jewelry.

    5. Claw clips

    Who knew that the accessory your mom used to wear when running errands in the ’90s would become the it-accessory today? Whether it’s tortoiseshell and plastic or metal and geometric, claw clips are not only the #1 hair trend of 2020, but will continue to be on-trend through 2021. Thank the fashion gods for making low-maintenance hairstyling officially cool. Toss hair in a half-up style or twist into a DIY french twist for a chic, effortless, and easy hairstyle that will make a statement.

    6. Split leg pants

    So long, skinny jeans! Can’t say I’ll miss you too much (but will still probably wear you whenever nights out become a thing again). While it’s early in the season, fashion girls everywhere are rocking the split leg pant so much, it might just be the trendiest pair of pants this year. Think of them like a slightly flared pant, with a slit up the front for a more elongating, flattering, and unique look. Find the split leg style in comfy black trousers or jeans you’ll want to wear all year long.

    7. Blazers

    OK, so blazers are always in style. But this season, fashion bloggers and style stars are less interested in blazers with their work uniforms and have been pairing them with athleisure instead. So next time you’re leaving the house and need a light jacket, throw your favorite blazer on top of your sweatsuit set or leggings and tee.

    8. Matching sets

    Speaking of matching sweatsuits sets, if my sweatpants don’t come with a matching sweatshirt that’s equally as cute, I don’t want it. To wear your sweatsuits the fashion-girl way, opt for colorful options or luxurious materials like knit, and pair with a long coat or jacket in an opposing color. You’ll be warm, comfy, and stylish until spring.

    9. Loungewear Dresses

    After almost a year of wearing the same leggings every day, it’s no surprise fashion girls are over the same boring pieces (aren’t you?). That’s why loungewear dresses are officially a thing (because why should leggings have all the fun?). Think: breathable but fitted dresses in buttery fabrics and comfortable materials that make you feel like you have nothing on at all. The dress will be so cozy, you’ll want to wear it every day, but will look so put-together, you’ll look like you’re expecting company (even if the only “company” you’ve had in 12 months is the pizza delivery).

    10. Off-the-Shoulder Sweaters

    If you haven’t gotten the idea yet, fashion girls are transforming winter basics to be a lot more interesting. The off-the-shoulder neckline is just as comfortable for lounging around the house as your favorite comfy knit, but adds a more unique detail and a little hint of skin (in case you happen to have a Zoom date later, if you know what I mean). Try it dressed up with a skirt or jeans, or wear it around the house with your go-to comfy pants.

    What trends are you wearing this season? More

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    50+ Valentine’s Day Gifts to Spread Some Love This Year

    I’m a pretty positive person overall, and I almost rarely write off someone for one thing. Heck, my best friend hates the one thing I love in this world (the Jonas Brothers), and I still allow her in my presence. But there’s one type of person that I just know I won’t jive with. They irritate me to no end, and I have very little room in my life for them. And that, my friends, is the kind of person who hates Valentine’s Day. Y’all, I have been single for every single Valentine’s Day of my entire life, but it surely hasn’t stopped me from putting together a snazzy pink and red outfit, making cards for my best friends, putting hearts on every single thing, and making enough treats to put a small army in a sugar coma. It’s like Halloween in which it’s a holiday strictly about ~vibes~, and I refuse to deal with the joy suckers of the world who’ve decided that love is only meant to be between a couple and can’t enjoy it.
    Nonetheless, as you can see, I take V-Day very seriously. I love gifting the people in my life (as well as myself) with something special every year, whether it’s a sweet card, a new beauty product they’ll love, a fun activity (see #2!), or something sexy just for me. No matter who you’re buying for, we gathered a list of the best Valentine’s Day gifts to give regardless of your budget. Time to spread a little more love! 

    For girlfriends, best friends, coworkers, and yourself: 


    For the guys in your life: More

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    The Target Cleanser Our Editor Swears By + 12 Other Products We Finished This Month

    We’re big fans of the YouTube Beauty Community here at The Everygirl. We’re constantly talking about our favorite creators, their best looks, and buying pretty much everything they recommend. The YouTube beauty world is honestly what we have to thank for some of the biggest trends in beauty—we’d never be baking our undereyes or curling our hair with straighteners or using men’s post-shave balm as a primer if it weren’t for the beauty YouTubers who taught us how. Alongside the various techniques YouTube has taught us, the phenomenon of the ever-so-popular “empties video” has truly taken over our subscription feeds. Every beauty YouTuber has made an empties video (if not five), and everyone who even knows just a glimpse of beauty YouTube has seen one. The concept is simple: show everyone what’s in your trash and talk about if you loved it, if you’ll buy it again, and how long it took you to use up. 
    So being the beauty-lovers we are at TEG HQ, we decided to create our own empties series. Every month, all of our editors will share a few of our own empties—from skin, hair, and makeup products to candles and vitamins and home items—and give our unfiltered review on each of the products. Some of them we’ll love and need to repurchase ASAP … and some we’ll celebrate finally finishing them up. If you’ve ever wondered what our absolute favorites (and not-so-favorites) are, this is the right place to be. It’s finally time for our trash cans to shine!

    Collagen Coating Hair Protein Treatment

    I have fine, bleach-damaged hair, which means that at one point or another, I’ve tried pretty much every expensive deep conditioner I could get my hands on. A few weeks ago when I was visiting my parents, I saw this in my mom’s shower, used a glob, and was in awe at what my hair felt like after. After immediately ordering it and going through an entire bottle of my own, I can say this truly might be the best deep conditioner I have ever used in my life, and it’s under $10. It makes my hair feel truly healthy, not weighed-down or full of oils temporarily masking the damage, and I’ve noticed a huge difference in my hair’s overall health from using it over time. This is an immediate re-purchase for me.
    – Maddie, Associate Editor & Fashion Content Manager

    Authentic Beauty Concept
    Glow Touch

    I am the first to admit that my hair is not my best asset. Having thin, fine hair has made me prioritize thickening treatments and texturizing sprays. My cabinets are full of mousses, pastes, and dry shampoos in an attempt to make my hair just a little more Gisele-like. I never thought the secret to better hair could actually be in a product meant to soften and smooth hair, rather than thicken or volumize. The Glow Touch has become my #1 ride-or-die product because the non-toxic mist instantly makes my hair so much shinier and softer without ever leaving it oily or weighed down. Rather than trying to thicken or volumize my hair (which leads to a lot of frizz and damaged ends), this moisturizing product reminded me that the goal should just be to make my hair look healthy. Plus, it smells amazing. It’s basically like a blowout in a bottle, so yes, I will be buying over and over again.
    – Josie, Associate Editor & Wellness Content Manager

    Youth To The People
    Adaptogen Deep Moisture Cream

    I saw this moisturizer all over Instagram and was convinced it would be the answer to all of my prayers. My skin is seriously feeling my heightened stress levels, resulting in quite the eff-ed up moisture barrier on my otherwise combination skin, and I thought the ashwaghanda and reishi in this moisturizer might help. Upon the first few uses, I really loved that this was thick without being too heavy, but it just didn’t do enough for me. My skin didn’t feel any more moisturized than a moisturizer a quarter of the price, nor did it feel like it really did anything to help my skin. This won’t make its way back into my routine considering the high price point and lack of results.
    – Beth, Associate Editor & Beauty Content Manager

    Charlotte Tilbury
    Magic Away Concealer

    When I first tried this concealer, I proclaimed it was the goldmine of concealers. It was glowy and natural and had medium coverage. But as time went on, I grew to really despise this concealer. It immediately sinks into fine lines, it has abysmal staying power, and it emphasizes dryness I didn’t even know I had. The shade range also isn’t the best, with lots of options on the light spectrum with very few for deep and dark skin. As you can tell, I will not repurchase. (And instead, I’ll stick with my favorite concealer of all time:the Pat McGrath Labs Sublime Perfection Concealer, which is literally the exact opposite of every single thing I hate about this one.
    – Beth, Associate Editor & Beauty Content Manager

    No. 6 Bond Smoother Reparative Styling Creme

    I have spoken at length about my undying love for this leave-in product. I swear my hair isn’t falling off of my head because I use this every time I wash my hair. I have fine, thin hair that was supremely damaged when I bought this first bottle, and over the 1.5 years I used this product, my hair completely transformed from a bleached rat’s nest to hair that actually looks like hair should look. Don’t get me wrong: a lot of other steps, products, and lifestyle changes impacted my newfound hair health, but this leave-in is at the top of the list. It’s the perfect texture for a leave-in conditioner on basically any hair type because it’s moisturizing and detangling without being too heavy. You can also cocktail it with oils or detanglers to bump it up, which is what I always do!
    – Beth, Associate Editor & Beauty Content Manager

    UOMA Beauty
    Brow-Fro Baby Hair

    Spending more than $5 on a brow product was hard for me after I discovered ELF’s Ultra-Precise Brow Pencil, but I wanted to swap a daily beauty product for a Black-owned brand, was out of a brow pencil, and was dying to try UOMA Beauty. I hate to say it, but I now will gladly drop the extra money on this brow pencil, which leaves me both excited and sad for my wallet. To be fair, this lasts way longer than any of my cheap brow pencils. I got close to double the length of use with this than my favorite from ELF. The color and ratio of waxiness-to-pigment-ease-of-use was sublime. It’s basically impossible to go overboard, but it also has enough pigment to show up, and it lasted all day long (which I never get with brow products). I want to try Fenty Beauty’s brow pencil next, but I will keep this on my radar.
    – Beth, Associate Editor & Beauty Content Manager

    Coconut & Vanilla Deodorant

    I have mixed feelings on this deodorant. I bought a three-pack of Native deodorants sometime during spring quarantine (you know how it was), and I just got to this scent. I have been flirting with natural deodorants for a while now, and I can definitely say that this is the best that I have tried. My problem is that it’s $12, when I can buy my trusty two-pack of Secret for $4. However, I will say that when I finished this, I bought one of the newer and cheaper aluminum-free deodorants from a drugstore brand, and I am not impressed. I do kind of miss you, Native deodorant.
    – Jess, Assistant Editor & Junior Graphic Designer

    Total Temptation Eyebrow Definer Pencil

    I am someone who is kind of obsessed with brow products. I love trying out different high-end and drugstore pencils and gels, and I can’t even think of a brow product that I’ve bought twice–until this one. As you can see by how there is no label left on this, it was well-loved and well-used. It is the perfect dupe for the Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Definer at a fraction of the cost. The angled tip is great for hair-like strokes that give that ever-popular natural brow look.
    – Jess, Assistant Editor & Junior Graphic Designer

    Thrive Cosmetics
    Liquid Balm Lip Treatment

    In the middle of this blustery winter season, I realized my trusty Chapstick won’t protect me from dry, dehydrated lips; I had to look for something more tailored to protecting and hydrating my lips. This leave-on lip treatment from Thrive Causemetics is ultra-hydrating and softens my lips, creating almost like a seal of protection against the harsh and dry winter weather. It’s 100 percent vegan and cruelty-free, and the liquid balm treatment features sesame seed extract, vitamin B5, and castor oil, all working together to smooth, hydrate, and plump. I don’t plan to lose this lip balm like so many Chapsticks before!
    – Blair, Contributing Editor

    Airflash Spray Foundation

    This Dior Airflash Spray Foundation was a splurge, but one that was totally worth it. I don’t usually ball out when it comes to beauty products, but for me, foundation is the only product where I’ll put my money where my mouth is. This spray foundation was one of the most natural yet full-coverage foundations I’ve ever tried. I would alternate between spraying it on my beauty blender or a makeup brush, but either way, my skin would look incredible when I would use it. It’s long-lasting for nights out but felt super lightweight which made it perfect for even the hot summer months. As much as I’d like to repurchase, this time around, I’m opting for a lighter coverage tinted moisturizer because, let’s be real, I’m not doing full faces these days. But when the days of being in public grace us again, I’ll definitely be re-adding this to my cart.
    – Ashley, Editorial Assistant

    Glow Maker – Antioxidant Serum

    This cult-favorite serum is a Team Everygirl essential—and after using it for just a few days, you’ll see why. It adds both an immediate brightness and an over-time glow and just a few drops go a long way. It took me such a long time to go through this bottle that I’m going to take a break from it (to try other serums instead), but I’m sure I’ll re-buy this one again sometime in the future.
    – Abigail, Social Media Editor

    ROSEN Skincare
    Super Smoothie Cleanser

    Rosen is the skincare brand I use more than any other—and I don’t see that changing anytime soon. I bought this cleanser back in June to use as I was finishing up a bout of isotretinoin, and I’ve been using it every single day since (the 8 oz. size lasted me about six months). This cleanser is lightly exfoliating and super cleansing (it has a nice lather), so I always feel refreshed and brightened after using it. I’m SO excited that it’s now sold at Target, and I’m already part of the way through a new bottle.
    – Abigail, Social Media Editor

    Kristen Ess
    Strand Strengthening Reconstructive Moisture Mask

    Ever since Kristin Ess’s haircare line launched at Target, I’ve had at least one of her products in my daily and weekly rotation. This treatment mask is moisturizing and smoothing, and my hair was always left feeling shiny and more manageable after each use. As someone with wavy, tangly hair, I’m always looking for a product to tame my dry, treated hair—and you simply cannot find a better option at this price point.
    – Abigail, Social Media Editor

    Want more empties? Check out the previous months below! More

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    Polished in Sweats: A Week of Work-From-Home Outfits

    You know the opening credits of Sex and the City where Carrie Bradshaw (Sarah Jessica-Parker) is strutting the streets of New York City in her pink tank top and white tutu? That’s how radiant and powerful I used to feel as I walked to work every day (minus the part where she gets splashed by a bus). In those times, I wasn’t just headed to the office; I was on my way to make the halls my catwalk and the cubicles my red carpet. I’ll tell you a secret, we (fashion-lovers) get dressed for two people and two people only: ourselves and the people in the office who compliment our shoes.Unfortunately, the last nine months have reshaped the reality of our working world. Who knows when we’ll ever be required to be in the close quarters of an office building again? When I first started working from home, it was so hard to find the motivation to actually wear something other than pajamas—and let’s be honest, on some days that motivation still evades me. However, I find that I feel the most productive and like myself on the days where I make the conscious decision to actually get dressed. So, I decided to act upon this intentionality for an entire week. These were the work-from-home looks I came up with:
    Day 1

    Any outfit that involves sweatpants is automatically a winner, am I right? For day one of my week of outfits, I paired a seamless bodysuit from Fabletics with some super-soft sweatpants and my fuzz-lined Crocs. To give this gray look a little bit of personality, I donned a soft, cheetah-print headband. The bodysuit/sweatpants combo is super trendy right now and is an effortless way to look chic while feeling extremely comfortable. I’ve also worn this bodysuit with black leggings when traveling, and—aside from having to unbutton the suit every time I went to the bathroom—it was the perfect, fashionable, comfy ensemble. 

    Day 2 

    On a perfect day, I wake up before work hours and go for a walk to set my intentions for the day and listen to whatever podcast, book, or playlist I’m into at the moment. On those days, an outfit like this is my go-to. I love to take an all-black look and layer colors on top of it. I’ve been really into earth tones lately, so I decided to pair this H&M turtleneck with some black leggings, my trusted Ugg boots, and this quilted vest for warmth (and style)! When it’s a bit chillier, I layer a black crewneck sweatshirt under the vest, and on warmer days, I trade in the boots for my trusted Nike shoes.

    Day 3

    Some days I just can’t be bothered to do my hair for a marathon of Zoom meetings. On those days, I make my headscarf an intentional and attention-grabbing piece of my outfit.  (Can you tell that green and black are my favorite colors?) For day three, I paired an all-black sweatsuit with a statement crystal necklace from b.serene and a Classic Flow headwrap from The Wrap Life. I honestly wish I had this sweatsuit in five different colors! I would 100 percent wear it for every day of the week and switch up my headwrap to match. 

    Day 4

    After living in sweatpants and leggings for the first three days, I decided to switch it up and recall what it felt like to wear jeans! Due to the fact that I am morally opposed to wearing jeans that tug at my thighs and pinch my waist, especially while I’m at home, there was only one pair of jeans that I’d even consider wearing. If you have read the article about my five favorite wardrobe pieces, then these jeans will look familiar. They are the best plus-size mom jeans on the planet, I promise. I paired them with this headband from Dia&Co and a cowl neck sweater that happens to be permanently borrowed from my mom’s closet for a cozy and casually dressy look. 


    Day 5

    Hooray for another matching set! I’m obsessed with this look, and while it may seem quite plain, there are a lot of subtleties that bring it to life and make this comfortable look feel fashion-forward. I paired this biker short and crewneck tee co-ord with an adjustable bandie from The Wrap Life and finished with rings from Cali Tiger to accessorize the look. It got a bit chilly throughout the day so I threw on a long cardigan and some long socks, and what do you know? Fierce!

    Day 6 

    I think having sweatpants for all occasions is my superpower. For this casual look, I paired a pair of joggers with a long-sleeve crop top that had drawstring ruching detail on the sides. I loved how chill this look was, but if I were to style it again, I might opt for a top that matched the color of my joggers and layered some gold necklaces as trendy statement pieces.

    Day 7

    I have to admit, this is my favorite work-from-home outfit. It went into the group chat, and everyone was a fan, so I know I looked cute. The standout element in this ‘fit is the jumpsuit from Urban Outfitters. The best thing about this jumpsuit is its versatility. Be honest: could you tell it was a jumpsuit? Exactly. Although I am aware that this is meant to be a summer piece, there’s so much you can do to style it for winter.  You can throw on a cardigan like I did here or layer it atop a sheer, long-sleeve bodysuit. You could also place a colorful mock-neck underneath it and add a statement belt, or don a cardigan and wrap the belt around the jumpsuit and cardigan combo. The possibilities are endless.

    The phrase “dress for success” has taken on a whole new meaning this past year. We have to maintain a professional, put-together look for video calls while also prioritizing comfort for our sanity. Dressing to work from home is challenging, but here are a few of the things I do to make it easy and fun: 
    Collect headbands and headwraps: Every day is not a good hair day, and that’s OK! Gather about five headbands or headwraps that you can rotate on those days where you don’t want to do your hair for a 30-minute Zoom call. 
    Rely on matching sets: Everyone loves a good coordinated set, and they take the thinking out of matching your tops to your bottoms. 
    Keep your accessories simple: I’m the kind of girl who buys hoop earrings in bulk and just changes the color of them to match my outfit.  Simple elegance is something to strive for, even while working from home.  
    Be aware of the Zoom Square: That’s the rectangle around your face that your coworkers can see. If you’re having a lazy day, just remember that the only parts that need to appear polished are the shoulders and up!  More

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    I Replicated 5 Outfits I’ve Saved on Instagram

    In 2021, almost everyone I know has—at one point or another—expressed their disdain for social media. And sure, it’s a comparison trap and only shows people’s highlight reel and can be a time-sucking nightmare; but if you do it right, it can be a source of endless inspiration.Social media has given all of us an opportunity to present whatever version of ourselves to the world that we want, and that also means being able to show off our style. We no longer have to draw inspiration from the pages of magazines—now, you can every time you open your phone. I’ve shared time and time again that one of my absolute favorite ways to get out of a style slump is by turning to my trusty folder of saved Instagram photos, particularly the one aptly named titled “style inspiration.”
    Every time I’m scrolling and see one of the people I follow wearing something I absolutely love, I save it to my folder, and when I feel like I don’t know what to wear or am turning back to the same uniform too frequently, I flip through to get some ideas—and let me tell you, it works. 
    You don’t need identical pieces or to buy anything new to make use of the strategy; you just need a little bit of creativity. Want to see how it’s done? I replicated five of my most recently-saved outfits to see how I felt in things I wouldn’t ordinarily put together.

    Inspiration: a matching set with a chic coat

    My take:

    I loved this outfit for how easily it made a matching set look like something you could wear out of the house. Instead of my teddy coat, I paired my set with my white, wool coat, and it instantly made me feel like a celebrity going on a paparazzi walk. Completed with easy-going chunky boots, it takes casual-chic to a whole different level, and if you see me wearing this on repeat soon, don’t call me out on it.

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    Inspiration: a chunky turtleneck and neutral shacket

    My take:

    I tend to instinctively pair my jackets (and as of late, shackets) with thin, skin-tight shirts, so this look caught my eye because it combined a shacket with a chunkier sweater—something I’d normally assume would feel too bulky. But I’m here to report that it did not; it just felt like a cozy day’s dream. I’m very into my leather trousers right now, so instead of black denim, I reached for those and a pair of sneakers.

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    Inspiration: a silk shirt and distressed denim

    My take:

    Man, oh man. Of all of these looks, this one just might be my favorite. I wouldn’t exactly call myself a minimalist, so when I saw this silk-shirt-and-denim combo that looked effortlessly cool, I knew it was something I wanted to try to replicate. Instead of a cream shirt, I opted for this emerald one and finished it off with my python booties. Did it end up minimal? No, but I love how the shirt and boots do all the talking, and you really don’t need anything else to pull it together. 

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    Inspiration: a graphic sweatshirt and plaid pants

    My take:

    For obvious reasons, casual style has reigned supreme over the past year, and I thought this was an amazing take on making it a bit elevated. I wished I had an oversized sweatshirt to wear with this, but loved how this cropped one looked layered over a turtleneck with some gold necklaces. My plaid pants tend to collect some dust in my closet, but this reminded me why I invested in them and made me want to reach for them more. Win, win, win.

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    Inspiration: a perfectly belted blazer

    I always wonder what I’ll wear on our first day back to the office some day, and honestly, I think I’ve decided. I love a blazer with a coordinating, fabric belt that comes with it, but something about adding a leather belt on top of any blazer just gives it a bit more “oomph.” Instead of jeans, I opted for my leather leggings and white combat boots, and I. am. obsessed. I feel like a badass who could go straight from the office to happy hours at a chic bar and nobody would bat an eye.

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    The 6 Most Innovative Beauty Products of 2020

    It seems that almost every day there is a new beauty product hitting the market: new eyeshadow palettes, a new lipstick formula, and foundations galore. The beauty industry is constantly churning out products that we, the beauty-obsessed, eat up with glee. As the industry becomes more saturated with products, companies are looking for new ways to appeal to customers, and the best way to do that is to release products we’ve never seen before. Innovation is always a good thing, and as more companies fight for our attention, producing new products with different benefits, delivery, and packaging is important. 
    Being the beauty junkie I am, I’m always looking for the most interesting new item on the market and how it compares to the products we already know and love. I’ve rounded up the five best beauty innovations we saw in 2020 so you can try something new and exciting too! 

    Fresh Beauty
    Rose Deep Hydration Oil-Infused Serum

    When this addition to the Fresh Rose skincare line came onto the scene this past spring, I was intrigued. A liquid serum infused with oil? How did it work and what did it do? This is a serum that you drop into your hands (it has a water consistency) and press into your skin. The serum delivers 24 hours of hydration to give you dewy and plumped skin. The water/oil formula is interesting because you have two phases mixing to hydrate. You can also use it morning or night, so it’s the perfect addition to your skincare routine, no matter the time of day. 

    Corrale Hair Straightener

    If you haven’t heard, Dyson isn’t your mom’s vacuum brand anymore –they’re making our new favorite hair tools now! You know about the blow dryer and the Air Wrap but in 2020, Dyson released a cordless hair straightener… yes, cordless. Have you ever wanted to straighten your hair while on a no camera Zoom call? Now you can! The straightener has a flexing copper plate to help you remain in control of the styling while also using less heat. The iron is made to reduce frizz, which we can all use a little help with. A cordless straightener that reduces frizz and breakage and still *actually* straightens hair? Innovation at its finest… 
    Plus, we love how easy it is to curl with this straightener because of it’s curved shape. This video made all of our editors’ jaws drop. 

    C-Lash Lash Naturals Replacement

    This is an innovation that shouldn’t have taken until 2020 to develop, but better late than never. The London-based brand, Eylure released C-Lash, which is specifically made for those who have lost their eyelash hair to cancer treatments or other medical conditions. These lashes are made with a thicker-yet-softer and more flexible band to help adhere to the eye better and easier than other lashes. The story of how they came about is beautiful; C-Lash founder, Codilla Gapare was diagnosed with breast cancer, and after losing her eyelashes, she realized that regular fake lashes do not cut it for a lash replacement. Enter C-Lash. They partnered with Eylure to bring these false lashes to market, and the rest is history. 

    Megababe Le Tush Butt Mask

    A butt mask? Stay with me here… We have masks for everything else: our face, hands, feet, eyes, lips, hair… why not your tushy? Megababe is the beauty brand of our bodies–thank you, Katie Sturino–so why shouldn’t they be the ones to save our butts? The Le Tush Butt Mask is a three-minute clarifying mask that is formulated with glycolic, malic, and azelaic acid along with environmentally-friendly exfoliating beads to deep clean. There is also witch hazel to clarify and squalane and kelp to moisturize. It will leave your behind healthy, glowing, and ready for bathing suit weather (regardless of what time of year it is).

    Fenty Skin
    Fat Water Pore Refining Toner Serum

    A toner and serum, this product defies the rules that a toner has to be drying and that a good skincare routine includes a dozen steps. This thick serum is unlike any other skincare product we’ve ever tried. It’s truly the hybrid of a toner and serum, as its texture is thick like a serum but spreads and feels like a toner on your skin. (How many times can I say “toner” and “serum” in just a few sentences?) Our editors tested this product, along with the whole Fenty Skin line–here was our review.

    Benefit Cosmetics
    Brow Microfilling Pen

    Microblading has been all the rage over the past few years, but now, our favorite brow beauty brand has marketed that look for everyone. This “microfilling pen” has an ink-like formula to adhere to your brows and skin, mimicing the look of actual hair. If you follow the instructions on the Benefit website, you’ll look as if you came straight from the salon. This was especially necessary for 2020 since, ya know, we couldn’t get our brows done.  More