Oh, those few cool days we had here in LA got me all excited. I immediately threw on boots, my gray sweater dress, blazer … Yea, no. We’re back to 85 degree weather. But it’s not stopping me from making the house ready for the holidays. I pulled out Christmas ornaments, and have been sending (not-so) subtle hints to my fiance about the tree needing to go up this week. I never had the tree up for Thanksgiving, and I think we should give it a try. He says it’s too soon, but I’m basically behaving like Will Ferrel in Elf like – it’s never too soon for Christmas!
When it comes to wrapping a flannel shirt around my waist, I’m an OG. I lived the era of ripped jeans, tees, flannels, vintage jackets, doc martens, motorcycle boots and beanies. In fact, it was all I wore in art school while listening to Alice in Chains in our smokey graffiti covered cafeteria (looking at you 1992 SVA). When I saw the revival of this style (and the revival of the term “grunge”, yuck), I couldn’t deal with it. Pop culture certainly has a way of ruining everything.
Related: Long vest and denim
I went to art school in NYC in the 90s so dressing in tees, denim and flannel was more about comfort, convenience and staying warm. I won’t lie, I wore my fair share of platform boots along with my lumber jack wears but those were the times. My social life consisted of angst music at CBGB and a bit of Deee-Groovy(ness) at the Limelight. The scene was indie, artsy … Not contrived at all. That is, until alternative rock became pop and “they” put Eddie Vedder on the cover of Time magazine. Shortly after, Cindy Crawford started strutting the runways in her designer flannel tops. That’s when it all went down the tubes along with great music.
I bought this skirt for the Inspire Orgullo brunch we hosted last month, but it was way too hot. I ended up wearing this harem instead. Then I thought, OK, I can wear it for the Q&A I moderating for Digital Influencer Lab. Nope, still too hot. Instead, I decided to just wear it for my blog. It’s been sitting in my closet waiting to make a debut. Why not here? LA will cool down eventually, right? Can we stop wearing summer clothes? I’ve been dying to wear rich blues and reds, knit tops, boots, scarves … Ah! I can’t wait. I love seasons. We really don’t get them here, but it does cool down. Any breeze will do at this point.
Beautiful things happen when you come out the fog of being ill. I feel like I’m finally done with that dreadful chapter filled with an overwhelming amount of lessons. I feel much better … But I can’t say I’m completely healed yet. I’m now entering my transition chapter. Every day is a new page filled with new opportunities, a new outlook, and new a definition of what it means to be healthy.
Related: Cutting bangs when you’re over 40
When I started feeling like my old self again a few months ago, I cut bangs. I’ve had bangs for a good part of my life so cutting them was my way of going back to a time where I felt the most free. Fortunately, it was a hairstyle that stands the test of time because teased hair would not have worked out so well today (I definitely dabbled in a lot of hairspray during the 80s). It was a fun experiment. But I’m so ready for them to grow out!
Cutting bangs was just not enough for me. I felt like my hair was too dark and heavy, and that it either needed a new shape or color. I wasn’t sure. I had been contemplating going light, but didn’t want to do the ombre again – Although it really is one my favorite looks. I started browsing colors online, and I kept going back to Jlo’s hair color. I think it’s a great “blonde” for olive skin. The honey tone gives off a nice anti-aging effect as well. I feel it softens my face a bit. When you’re not 25 anymore, these are the things you think about when coming up with a hair style suitable for you.
The next step was finding someone who would be up for the challenge of coloring this head of hair. I’ve worked with a few stylists in the past but I wasn’t convinced about returning. They were good but I felt there was someone out there better suited for me. I’m so picky when it comes to my hair. I have so much of it and I’ve had a lot of not-so-great experiences.
During one of my Dry Bar visits, I noticed that the woman styling my hair had a striking color that only a professional colorist could have achieved. I started a conversation with her about hair, color and beauty stuff … and asked if she had any suggestions. She told me she works as a colorist as well and showed me her work. She seemed to really get what I wanted so I scheduled an appointment with her – and the rest is pretty much history. I now have bronde hair (which is basically a marketing term for brunette/blondish hair). The process took all day. I’m not kidding. I think I was at the salon for about 6 hours. This is why I overthink my styling options. Hair salons for me are an all day commitment. She was so incredibly thorough and detailed oriented … I can’t imagine going to another colorist. When you find the right stylist, that’s it. My hair has so many beautiful blonde tones and textures, and my roots were carefully colored to allow growth without looking so dramatic between touch-ups.
Related: Earthy makeup look for fall
I’m excited to try fall and winter makeup looks with my new color. Most people go light for summer, but I actually love the way lighter hair looks in the winter. It’s a nice change for me as I continue to heal. Getting your hair done or creating a new look is such an empowering way to celebrate the changes in life.
I’ve always been on top of my skincare, but as I’ve gotten older I’ve had to adapt to the changes in my skin. At 42, my goal is to keep my skin hydrated, protected from the sun and moisturized. I work from home most of the time and am on mom mode all of the time so applying makeup is not something I can always indulge in (nor do I feel it’s really necessary during the day) unless there is an event I want to glam up for. I want my skin to look nice all on its own so I can get ready quickly and effortlessly. When I do need to run out, I like to keep my makeup very light and very convenient. The less I clog my pores with makeup, the better.
I’ve had bangs on and off for most of my life. In fact, I had them all through childhood until about the age of 21 or so. Something about them feels like home to me, if that makes sense. But as you get older, revisiting haircuts doesn’t always feel the same. For example, I love the way they look when my hair is all done, but I realized it’s going to take me a bit longer to get used to them this time around. I keep pushing them out of the way or pinning them back when I’m working. I’ve grown accustomed to flipping my hair out of my face or just pulling it all back. Bangs require more effort, especially when you have curly/wavy hair. They have a life of their own every morning when I wake up. And if it’s humid, they just twist in all sorts of direction creating a crown of cow licks. The straightening iron is my new BFF.
I wanted a significant change but nothing too drastic at the same time. I think turning 42 (on the 23rd!) and the fact that my health has gotten so much better had a lot to do with wanting to switch things up. I’ve been having the “should I have bangs” question in my head for far too long because I knew it was going to require more effort for me. I’m a bed-head kind of girl. I decided to just have it done, and not look back.
If you’re in the gray zone wondering if you should take the bangs plunge, I suggest going to your stylist with your ideas but remain flexible as well. What looks great in a picture may not necessarily work for us. You stylist may have a few suggestions you never thought about. I know what works for the shape of my face and what doesn’t (lots of trial and error here), so I went with a more 70s inspired look. You will never know if you don’t see for yourself. Who knows. You may love it … And if you don’t, it will eventually grow out.
Now that I have bangs, my next question is – Keep trimming them or grow them out for a sexy side swept look? We shall see. That’s the beauty of changing your style. Here’s to another birthday month and a new hair cut!
Gustav Klimt is a favorite for many because of his undeniably beautiful, decorative work and ethereal subjects. For me, his work represents so much more. In fact, I will never forget the day I set my eyes on his version of the Goddess of Wisdom, Athena. The son of a goldsmith, it’s quite clear where he got his influence from but it was his brother who designed the breathtaking gilded frame making this piece a family affair that resulted in more of an architectural piece. The canvas is strong, as it should be. It frames the woman who represents all that is wise and knowledgeable. However, Klimt, who was rumored to having been a misogynist, added a bit of a twist in his rendition. She is also a dangerous avenging warrior staring right back at her viewer in a frontal stance. Are all wise women dangerous, is the question. Dangerous in what way? To whom? Men? I would venture to say that’s what is implied.
Notice the fish scale armor. Its meaning is so personal, profound and deliberate. I mean, think about it for a second. Is it possible to hold a fish in your hands? They’re beautiful to look at but they slip away. It says so much about Klimt’s relationships and perception of women. It has always been so fascinating to me that he used this texture to protect her. She’s also holding the Nuda Veritas in her hand (the naked truth), who is clutching on to her mirror (symbol of self awareness) and a snake (symbol for quick wittedness). The plot thickens with each detail, making this subject a lot more than a wise woman. It’s no wonder this is my favorite piece of all time. So much to see. So much to think about. So much to question. It’s complex. Just like a woman. Yet, I find my peace in this work. Can’t tell you how many times I’ve referenced this painting as a symbol for what I’ve felt in my own relationships – A mix of vulnerability and strength.
Aaaah, the Kiss. Who doesn’t know this one. I can go and on about every detail (the woman’s body language, the implication of chastity) but I’ll leave it alone, and enjoy this one for its beauty. As my health starts get better and better, I like to dig into my old art books and revisit paintings that spoke to me at one time or another in my life. Each time I look, I find something new. I see something I hadn’t before. Today, it was Klimt.
I wear a lot of denim. It’s sort of my staple look for date nights, art shows and hanging out with friends. I just love the way a pair of jeans look with a white or cream colored top. It’s a very clean style that leaves room for a pop of color and accessories. I especially love gold statement pieces and delicate clutches.
I hope you had a great weekend. I indulged in a few dates nights with my guy, a bit of cooking and baking fun and family QT time over the last few days. I needed a respite. The last couple of weeks were jam packed with work. We’ve had a lot of great campaigns going on this Spring – Many in the name of female empowerment and the celebration of family and motherhood. So happy about the work we’ve been doing, and how many people it reaches. But it’s so important to have a bit of down time, a cup of coffee with a friend, an afternoon of baking with a loved one or an evening of art gallery hopping. Whatever you enjoy. I was thrilled to go to my first art show in ages since this TMJD flare consumed my life. It was a beautiful show that inspired me to pick up my own set of brushes. I will share the details this week!
My Day of the Dead makeup certainly got more elaborate than it was last year! It was a whole family affair. And did I mention it was a lot of fun too? It’s really an awesome experience when you’re hanging out with your favorite people and creating art while listening to music. From going over ideas, buying makeup and dressing up — these a great things to do as a couple or a family.
Day of the Dead is a beautiful tradition that originated in Mexico and celebrates the lives of those who passed. I’m Puerto Rican and Ecuadorian so it’s not a tradition I grew up with nor did I really know about it until I moved to Los Angeles. The first time I’d heard of it was during a visit to my son’s kindergarten class. The children were making sugar skulls. Intrigued, I looked it up and immediately fell in love with its history and approach toward the idea of death, which completely differed from how it’s perceive in America.
Embracing this new tradition in my life, I think of my grandmother this time of year and how much she contributed to my life with her generosity and love. She’s always there watching over me and her grandson, who she got to see be born before she passed. That was an experience she always wanted. Her life is certainly one I celebrate, as she would have wanted me to. After all, in the 11 years she battled cancer, my grandmother stayed strong and lived life with passion.
I’m a Moroccon Oil product junkie so you know if I’m talking about another hair product, it’s worth a try. I ran out of my regular shampoo/conditioner and decided to use the Dove Hair Therapy Nutritive Solutions Daily Moisture Shampoo and Conditioner they sent me (not compensated). I actually really like it. It’s hard to find products that moisturize your hair without leaving a greasy residue. My hair is very heavy and falls flat easily. The last thing I want is for a product to give me a wet dog look. So if you have curly hair like me (I blow it out), give it a shot and tell me what you think.
Also, Dove is having a fun contest. Try out their products and upload your pic to win goodies. Check it out!
Two weeks ago, I raved about the Youth Xtend collection sent to me by Artistry. I couldn’t keep the goods to myself. I would love for you to try out the serum (valued at $115.00). I’m hosting a giveaway on Babble. To enter, all you have to do is tell me your morning in skincare routine. But you have to enter on Babble. See you there!