Dogs Are People, Too…


Almost, at least.  Sorry to jump off the fashion train, but dogs are near and dear to my heart.  Having grown up with these tender, little (sometimes) creatures, I can honestly say that they really do exhibit human qualities, at least to my untrained eye.  But, thanks to neuroscientist, Gregory Berns, of Emory University we now have the scientific proof to back it up.

Over the past two years, Berns has conducted a series of MRI testing on canines, including his own pup, to test their capacity for love and attachment.  Research dictated that our furry friends indeed have the inherent ability to feel and display these characteristics that are largely reserved only for humans.  In Bern’s op-ed article published in The New York Times, he explained that because dogs cannot speak, research has obviously been more difficult, but with the help of a trainer and MRIs they were able to look “directly at their brains and bypass[…] the constraints of behaviorism, […]” which in turn tells “us about dogs’ internal states.”  Because of these findings, Berns urges dog-owners and lawmakers alike to see man’s best friend as a class of people and not property.  Perhaps, this is a long-awaited stepping stone for animal rights.  At the very least, it is an important reminder that pets, big and small, become part of our family and as one of my favorite quotes illustrates:

“the most precious things in life aren’t things.”

Meet my fur baby! ♥

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For more information on this development click here and here


One more thing, if you haven’t seen this adorable pup, yet, it’s worth the 3 minutes.  Now, tell me this little guy doesn’t know what love is!

XO

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5 Fashion Rules Men & Women Should Follow…


Happy Tuesday, Y’all.  So I’ve been thinking.  We always hear so much about fashion “don’ts,” but never enough about what we should be doing.  That’s not fair, so I thought it would be fun to put together a short list of some of the top unisex guidelines that can take our personal style from drab to fab!

1. It’s All About The Fit

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In other words, you wear the clothes, they don’t wear you.  A tailored fit can mean all the difference between looking put-together and looking like you literally just got dressed in the dark…in someone else’s closet…who is 3 sizes bigger (or smaller) than you.  Guys and girls alike struggle with this style staple for a variety of reasons – weight loss or gain, money restraints, the ‘comfort’ factor, or they simply fail to make a fashionable appearance a priority.  Interestingly enough, many of those issues are remedied by wearing the correct size clothes.  Most often people who feel like they have gained a few pounds here or there (who hasn’t!) can frequently make themselves appear larger with ill-fitting garments.  If money your hangup, don’t let it be!  Whether it’s a $100 dollar Rag & Bone T-shirt or a $10 one from Walmart, as long as it fits, it can look great and be an asset to your wardrobe.

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And even if keeping up with the latest trends isn’t your cup of tea,  keeping an eye on the size should be – it can payoff in more ways than one.  Remember that looking presentable can not only make you feel empowered and confident, but both CNN and Forbes have confirmed a direct correlation between dressing well and job opportunity and promotion.  Clothing companies have capitalized on this notion and have expanded their collections to include a variety of fits such as “skinny,” “modern,” or “tailored.”  Having these options make it easier than ever before to achieve the perfect look that accentuates everyone’s unique shape!  Looks like size does matter.

2. Be Polished – Even If You’re Scruffy

 Ryan Gosling

Let’s face it, us humans are generally one hairy population.  Some of us have long hair, some with short, men have facial hair, women hopefully don’t, it can be curly, straight, wavy, course, silky, fine, thick, thin…the list can go on forever.  Whether you’re prim and proper or rockin’ an edgy vibe, it’s important to tame those tresses so you look hott and not like a hott mess.  Don’t get me wrong, I get the “I-just-rolled-out-of-bed-and-I’m-naturally-this-fantastic” look, but even people who claim that that really happened, put at least some effort into their appearance.  It’s not being ‘vain,” it’s being the best you, you can be.

3. Good Hygiene Can Go A Long Way

Shower

Just be clean, you guys.  Nobody likes a smelly person.  I can’t even tell you how many times I’ve been in a confined space (think elevator, train, office…) with someone who could use a shower or at the very least, body spray, a mint, and some deodorant.  For anyone who lives in or around a big city, go on Facebook on like a Thursday (the faux Friday when everyone is irritated) and check out all the statuses about their public transit experiences.  You’ll laugh (because you know their sentiments are true) and simultaneously feel really bad for them.  You could be wearing a Tom Ford tux that fits you to a T, but if you’re emitting some foul odor, it doesn’t even matter – “it’s what’s under the clothes that counts” couldn’t ring more true (a clean body, people…this is a G-rated blog).  Don’t be the target of a “stinky person” status.  Shower, it’s that simple.  Also, brush your teeth.

4. Accessories Are Fun

Accessories 

Whether you’re a man or woman, you can accessorize.  I think us girls are really comfortable with this one, especially now where you almost feel naked without a scarf, sunglasses, necklace, at least 2 bracelets, or any combination of the above.  So often, though, guys shy away from this word for fear of appearing too feminine.  I’m obviously not saying to go paint your nails and throw on some bangles, but, wearing a nice watch, sturdy belt, and some fashionable and functional (guys, get excited about items serving a purpose) eyewear can really pull an outfit together. Throw on an accessory or two and go be all sexy and whatnot.

5. Invest In A Good Pair of Shoes

Shoes

The best type of shoe for any gender is one that is the perfect balance of style and comfort, and one that can be worn to a variety of events.  When purchasing footwear, I always try to envision the places I’d wear them to.  So those $300 fuchsia stilettos are cute, but how practical will they be when you have an interview to go on or a family event to attend.  Unless either of those are taking place in a club, you’re probably going to have to shell out more money on some new shoes.  Same goes for men.  That’s great that you have 8 pairs of sneakers, but, unless you are a professional runner, you should probably get yourself a pair of dress shoes that can be worn casually and to work.  While we’re on this topic, everyone please stop wearing sneakers with jeans.  I know we’ve all done it, and I know sometimes its “easy,” and know that I love you, but, just…stop.

XO 

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Have You ‘Giggled’ Today?…


Image As you may already know, The Style Verdict (<-don’t forget to like on FB!) is now a contributor for HelloGiggles.com!  I am so excited to be a part of such a fun and innovative site that helps showcase ‘lady-friendly’ content on everything from beauty, to fashion, to entertainment, to recipes, to current events and opinion-based articles.  If you haven’t already, please check out my first featured piece about the latest Red Carpet hair trends! I’ll be sure to update you each time a new post is published 🙂

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Thanks again for all of your support – It truly means so much!

XO

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It’s October, Let’s Feast on Something Festive…


I’m pretty much an open book when it comes to my love of fall so yesterday was kind of like a mini holiday for me – cue the seasonal sugared rimmed beers, corn mazes, and unhealthy amounts of cider products we’ll all consume.  But, what you may not know is that I am obsessed with breakfast. There is something about waking up to something deliciously satisfying and then washing it down with a glorious cup of coffee that is good for the soul (amiright?).  Anyway, let’s talk about this season’s most delectable mascot: pumpkin. The amount of pumpkin/pumpkin products that I could/have/will ingest in the coming weeks is kind of embarrassing, but I’m really okay with it – and in fact, I’m adding to it. 

I’ve literally been craving pancakes for like, 3 weeks.  That’s pretty impressive for a person who maybe has 4 pancakes a year.  I just want pancakes, I want them to be healthy, and now I want them to be festive, and by festive I mean pumpkin.  This seems like a tall order for most, but Jen over at Yummy Healthy Easy didn’t think so!  I honestly haven’t been this excited to make something since I found out cake on a stick was a thing. Check out her recipe and drool-worthy pictures (from different angles) below. Um, YUM.  

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If anyone needs me this weekend, I’ll be making these. Both days. Nonstop.


XO

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Comfy Chic: How to Wear Sweatshirts With Style…


How many times have you said “I wish I could wear sweats all day every day”?  I can tell you that I’ve muttered that sentence more times than I care to even say.   With the cooler weather upon us, following through on that sentiment seems more plausible than ever on my end.   There’s something about wearing loungewear on days that aren’t Sunday  (or Saturday mornings) that can literally make me paralyzed by comfort and render this gal completely unproductive.   BUT WAIT (in the most infomercial-esque voice possible) there is hope, hoodie lovers – sweatshirts that are fun and functional are here to rescue you from your daily dressing dilemma of style vs. comfort.  You can now have both.  Let us rejoice.

Here are a few I’m loving right now!

Sweatshirts

Model:  J.Crew $168  // “Oh My Chic” Boyfriend Sweatshirt: ILY Couture $55 // Gray and Leather:  Topshop $72 //Ivory Cutout: H&M $20  // Pink Zip “Saturday” Sweatshirt: Kate Spade New York $110

Pair a polished sweatshirt with some fitted jeans, classic makeup, and, dare I even say, heels (gasp!) and you’ve got yourself one enviable outfit that you may just want to sleep in.  (But, don’t…you look too nice!)

Have a wonderful Monday, beauties!

XO

Happy Saturday!


Hello friends!  

My talented best friend created a custom illustration for The Style Verdict and I just couldn’t wait to share until next week!  She is the artist behind Melsy’s Illustrations and I think you’re going to love her work.  Check out this beauty below! 

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For more info on her products visit her Etsy Shop: http://www.etsy.com/shop/Melsys

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Have a wonderful weekend – I have some good stuff planned for next week so stay tuned! 

XO 

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The 10 Types of Drivers That Make You Wish You Stayed Home…


On my way to work this morning, I came to the conclusion that driving can be a nightmare whether you’re 16 or 60 or going 4 miles or cross-country.  I’m certainly not saying I’m the greatest driver to ever live, but I am saying that people, in general, needs to get things together… I mean, hello…you are literally the conductor of your very own 5,000 pound machine, so put down that newspaper (yes, that happened) and ohhh, I don’t know…drive?  Here’s an inconclusive list the 10 types of drivers that make you wish you stayed home.  Feel free to add your own!

1. The Lingerer

Image Cred: driversed.com

I’m the person who lives life in a constant state of hesitancy. Do I accelerate? Do I brake? I’ll probably keep you on your toes…and make you late.

2. The Sunday Driver

Image Cred: photographersdirect.com

I’m the person who enjoys a nice, easygoing cruise…at 8 A.M. every weekday.  I try to stay as far under the speed limit as possible and I can mainly be found on one-lane roads – no passing here, folks!  Sunday is your holiday, not the other 6 days.

3. The Fast and the Furious Extra

Image Cred: carrentalexpress.com

I’m the person who drives like Vin Diesel is in the passenger seat and nitrous just engaged. But really, it’s rush hour and I just cut you off going 90.

4. The Straight Up Assh*le

Image Cred: thecarforum.com

I’m the person who really doesn’t give a sh*t.  True to my name, I’ll stop suddenly, swerve, and straddle lanes… then give you the finger.

5. The Beautician

Image Cred: carinsurancequotes.com

I’m the person who was running just a little late and forgot to put on my lipgloss…and mascara, eyeliner, and bronzer.  I mean well, so I try to do the majority of my makeup at a red light, but you can’t expect me to move right when it turns green, like, obvi.

 6. The “I’m Just Like You” Driver

Image Cred: news.cnet.com

I’m the person who drives exactly like you.  You speed up, I speed up. You slow down, so do I.  I’m literally your worst nightmare.

7. The Lost Driver

I’m the person who has no idea what road, state, or planet I’m even on.  Sometimes I’m considerate and pull over to figure things out, but other times, I just don’t care and you’ll do 15 MPH until I find my destination.

8. The Senior Citizen

Image Cred: world.edu

I’m a cousin of The Lingerer and The Sunday Driver.  I’ll pull out in front of you and then drive dangerously slow.  Don’t expect any other quick actions out of me, or for me to see really any of my surroundings.

 9. The Double Parker

Image Cred: newuniversity.org

I’m the person who sees those two glorious spaces and parks directly in between them.   People say I’m greedy, but I just like to say that I’m a collector…of spots.

10. The Techie

Image Cred: motorcyclenews.com

I’m the person who loves to play with gadgets on the road.  If you don’t already know, I’m really important, so it’s imperative that I’m talking or texting on my phone at all times.  I’m also a big fan of navigation. I can’t get enough of electronic maps, earbuds, and even my Palm Pilot on days that I’m feeling retro.  You can catch me looking down and not caring about anyone else’s safety.

11. And as a bonus – all trucks.

Image Cred: green.blogs.nytimes.com

Be safe out there!

XO

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90s Revival, DWTS, and 3 Must-Have Pieces for Fall…


Good afternoon, friends! I’m proud to report that there were no crazy makeup mishaps this morning and all the product went where it was supposed to…Mondays can really throw you for a loop.  It did, however, redeem itself in the form of Dancing with the Stars.  Now, I never actually watched this show for more than 4 consecutive minutes before last night, but there was something about the cast that really intrigued me – hello, if Bill Nye The Science Guy was going to be dancing, you know I’d be watching! Also, my inner Disney teen was probably far too excited to see Corbin Bleu, and that trashy-reality TV version of myself was definitely looking out for Snooki (er, Nicole…) – who, by the way, actually looked gorgeous and incredibly fit, which is obviously a far cry from her days on the Shore. I have to say, I was pretty impressed with the dancing and definitely touched by the underlying message of determination and strength as exhibited by the two contestants struggling with debilitating diseases: Jack Osbourne and the lovely Valerie Harper.  Did I just find my new guilty pleasure?

DWTS Cast

Image Cred: CBS

In other news, apparently Timberland boots are being revived from the 90s grave they were buried in and are fashionable again.  I’m sorry, but,… what?  I get it, they are considered to be a little piece of Americana, a little glimpse into urban street style, but to be fair, they. are. work. boots.  So, unless you plan on doing some carpentry or want to get busy rewiring some faulty electrical work, please, take them off.  It kind of baffles me that some of the world’s most noteworthy fashion designers are all about this trend.  Take the glorious designer of BCBG and Herve Leger, Max Azria, for example.  In an interview by Yahoo, he states: “It could be very stylish if you do a contradiction with a very feminine dress with these tough shoes. The balance is fantastic and very sexy.” I understand the whole androgynous, mixed sexuality, artistic angle you’re advocating, but Max, but if I’m going to be feminine, I’m going to wear pumps, not work. boots.  My girl, Rebecca Minkoff came to the rescue with a resounding “no” when asked if it were in style.  She gets me. And, now you know.

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Finally, these 3 fab runway trends are totally do-able for Fall: leopard/animal print, leather, and emerald green.

Burberry Fall 2013 Runway Show

Image Cred: Burberry

Oh Burberry, how pretty are you.  I’ve never been a big animal print lover; however, I’ve learned over time that moderation with (mostly) anything, including prints, is A-okay.  Since the New York Fall Fashion Week in the Spring, I’ve been on a mad hunt for a good pair of leopard pumps or flats.  Because trends change in an instant, I’ll probably settle on something more affordable, but, how cute are these, Loubs?!

Christian Louboutin

Image Cred: Christian Louboutin

As I sit here and type in my leather moto jacket by Zara, I can wholeheartedly say, I’ve bought into this craze.  There’s something special about leather that adds instant glam to even the most casual outfits.  Dressed up or dressed down, a touch of this versatile fabric can really pump up your chic factor. My next must-have? Leather leggins.

Leather

Image Cred: inaworldofbees.com

Lauren Conrad

Image Cred: Lauren Conrad

Move over burgundy, there’s a new deep hue in town: emerald green.  This color hit the runways (thanks, Pantone) in full force and I’m not mad about it.  What a beautiful color. Why haven’t we been this obsessed with it before!? Let’s all go get some emerald anything and be the gems that we are…(I was well overdue for a pun…)

Pantone

Image Cred: fashionista.com

What are you working into your Fall wardrobe!?

XO 

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Beauty on a Budget: Five Fab Finds Under $10…


It’s Monday, again and it couldn’t have been more apparent than when I put black, liquid liner on my eyebrows instead of my eyelids this morning. That was fun. But, what a Monday it’s been already! Miley and Liam have called it quits (Thank, God), we have a new Miss America, Nina Davuluri, Britney Spears released a new single affirmatively titled: Work B*tch, Burberry took the runway by storm at London Fashion Week, and sadly, 12 lives were taken at the DC Navy Yard (my thoughts and prayers go out to everyone affected). It’s definitely been an emotional roller coaster of a day, but aren’t Monday’s supposed to be “manic”?

Anyway, mid-eyeliner mistake, I was thinking about how many great drugstore products that I incorporate into my everyday routine. Not every item you put on your body needs to break the bank to be effective. In fact, there are a number of products that are under $10 that are every bit as good as those in the $50+ range. Lets get started!

1. Freeman Face Masks

Image Cred: shescribes.com

Don’t have enough time or money for a facial? I feel ya, sister. Meet a few of your new best friends. Freeman masks are so cheap ($2-$5) and so good. I honestly don’t know how I hadn’t come across these sooner in life. It’s borderline depressing. There are at least 7 different formulas to help target different problem areas such as dryness, dullness, acne, and inflammation. Bonus: They smell amazing AND you can purchase individual one-time use pouches to test them out before committing to a large tube – win! Go out and buy these now.

2. Maybelline Colossal Volum’ Express Mascara

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If you’re anything like me, you could live off of food, water, and a good mascara. If volume is what you’re after, this baby definitely has it. I can’t substantiate any of Maybelline’s claims that it increases lash volume by 9x (…because who measures that), but I can tell you, that my lashes are certainly full and flirty. Don’t get me wrong, I love a nice designer mascara as much as the next beauty blogger, but for $7.99, you really can’t go wrong! Purchase the blackest black for the most dramatic, glam look, and you’ll be well on your way to handing out dishes of lash envy.

3. Revlon Super Lustrous Lipstick

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Let’s face it, lip color can really make or break a look. It can be the difference between looking frumpy and looking fab, so why not experiment with different hues to see what looks best with your complexion. Obviously, this isn’t always feasible when we’re talking $35+ “splurge-sticks,” so here’s where these little gems come in handy. I personally think Revlon did a great job on these. They go on smooth, the color pay-off is great, they have decent packaging, and they are only $8.99. Bonus: They are moisturizing and have a bit of a sheen so if you’ve forgotten lipstick’s favorite friends, lip balm and lip gloss, you’re in luck!

4. Wet ‘n Wild Eyeliner/Eyebrow Pencil

Image Cred: vampyvarnish.com

I kid you not, these are a saving grace if you suddenly run out of your favorite pencil. For only $1, you really can’t beat ’em. I actually was surprised at the ease of application and the “smudge-ability” of the product. Definitely worth it if you aren’t up for spending a small fortune on the Dior and Lancome’s of the makeup world. Bonus: They actually last – how many $1 things can you say that about!?

5. Essie Nail Polish

Image Cred: style.com

I have an unhealthy small obsession with this $8 polish. If you’ve read my previous posts, you’ve heard about the production that is painting my nails. So, for me, all the more reason to find a great brand, with beautiful colors, fun names (they do matter…), and staying power. Also, the vibrancy of the hues is readily apparent in the bottle – in other words, the what you see is what you get. Bonus: The colors are “creamy” and you don’t need more than 2 coats (sometimes even 1!) for your nails to look like you just stepped out of the salon.

What is your favorite go-to bargain beauty product!?

XO

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Jimmy Kimmel Is At It Again… At Fashion Week…


Stop what you’re doing and watch this. Do you ever wonder if every person attending New York Fashion week really knows what they’re talking about? Apparently prankster, Kimmel, did and here’s the result! Purina Chow is so hot right now – meow!