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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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

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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6 Everyday Items You Never Knew Your Beauty Routine Needed…


I know, I know… it’s technically “Worth-It Wednesday” and I was going to review a new foundation I’ve been using, but I think I need a little more time to test it out.  Soooo, instead, I’ve put together a list of 6 items found around your home that you may have never thought to use when getting ready.  I didn’t invent these genius ideas, but I have used them! Here it goes!

1. Q-Tips 

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Image Cred: catchwordbranding.com

No surprise, here.  This little double-sided cotton swab is just the tool you need to correct any makeup application flub.  Extend that cat-eye liner a little too far? Get a case of the “shakey hands” when applying lipstick and liner? No problem, this little guy is here to save the day.  I like to dampen one end just enough for it to be able to glide across my skin, but not wet enough that it will ruin the rest of my makeup – can’t fix one problem and create another… that’s just silly!  Can’t get enough?  Well, you can also use Q-Tips to correct any mistakes during those at-home manicures.  Simply dip one end into nail polish remover, squeeze out the excess, and run it along any color creeping onto your skin.  Bonus: They are also great eyeliner “smudgers” for that seductive, smokey-eye!

2. Coffee Grinds 

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Image Cred: yellowblissroad.com

Now your morning coffee can pack a double punch.  If you’re anything like me, a nice hot cup of joe is vital in order to even think about having a productive day.  Caffeine, in general, gives your body that boost of energy it needs to get off the couch be a functioning member of society.  Now, you can use those same grinds to give your face and body a rejuvenated look.  Just mix the grinds with moisturizing lotion or olive oil and rub vigorously over face, neck, and body if you’re feeling adventurous (just keep in mind that this can be pretty messy…).  Wash off your scrub and revel in your smooth, supple skin! Sidenote: There is also talk about this being a cellulite fighter…I can’t attest to any claims, but how great would that be!?

3. Eggs

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Image Cred: thekitchn.com

Again, our mornings can seriously have a big impact on the rest of our day, so while you’re digesting from that delicious omelet, take a couple more eggs (2 should do, 3 if you have longer hair), beat them together in a small bowl and then apply this liquid to your hair in the shower.  Leave in for 3-5 minutes and rinse using luke warm water. Don’t take that last part lightly, unless of course you’re looking for seconds and want pieces of cooked egg in your hair.  That’s cool, too. This should leave your hair feeling soft and looking shiny – breakfast really is the most important meal of the day!

4. Toothpaste 

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Image Cred: wikipedia.com

You brush your teeth because you’re a fresh-breathed, good hygiened-person.  Congrats. Anddd, you may have also used it from time to time to spot treat some stubborn pimples. But, have you ever used it on your nails?  Sometimes our nails yellow for a variety of reasons – health, diet, old green nail polish that you’ve been too lazy to remove for 3 months – these are the usual culprits.  Toothpaste can be a saving grace for these folks – it’s cheap and easy to do.  Brush a small amount onto your nails and watch the stains diminish.  You can also add a few drops of lemon juice (which has intense lightening power all on its own) for an extra boost.  This may be self-explainitory, but please don’t use the same toothbrush you’re using in your mouth on your nails. That’s…wrong.

5. Scotch Tape 

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Image Cred: sheknows.com

This one is going to seem a little weird.  But, it works. So, I guess it’s just awesome.  Dry skin on your lips?  Place a piece of scotch tape on those babies and press.  Then gently pull the piece off and look at all that pesky dead skin with pride – flakey lips can be an ugly battle, but you’ve won! Bonus: You can also use it to make some pretty spectacular nail art.

6. Pam Cooking Spray – Original 

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This is just ingenious.  Painting my nails is legitimately a process for me.  I have to find the perfect block of time to do them so it’s not interfering with 1. dish washing, 2. dog walking, feeding, playing… really anything to do with my dog, and 3. bed time (there is seriously nothing worse than waking up with bed sheet imprints and lint on your freshly painted nails).  Solution? Pam Cooking Spray can act as a quick drying agent so that you can get back living a smudge-free life!

Do you have any must-use beauty tips and secrets?

XO

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Three Pretty Awesome Things That Happened Today…


Generally I don’t expect much from Tuesdays…maybe a decent episode of America’s Got Talent, good hair, and matching socks, but nothing too crazy. Little did I know that the pop-culture end of the world would give me a few gems to brighten up this dreary, rainy day.

Staying true to yesterday’s “More Fashion Week, Please” title, the first thing on the agenda is a peek into J. Crew’s Spring 2014 line. This brand can literally do no wrong. I can’t get enough of their clothes. Everything from the jewels to their jackets are meticulously crafted with comfort and ease of wear in mind. There is something about the “I’m So Casually Chic, It Hurts” look that really speaks to me and I constantly wish that I could pull it off more often than I do. J.Crew really has created a lifestyle brand that bridges the gap between high cost and high style. Don’t get me wrong, there are certainly pricey pieces, but as a whole, the polished looks that can be created with their statement basics appear to be far more costly than they actually are. After all, doesn’t everyone want to look “expensive” every now and again?

Bring on the bight pops of color, sleek lines, pretty patterns, and pastel hues:

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Also on the agenda is that “Worst Twerk Fail of All Time” video that proves that America is: 1. still obsessed with the twerk 2. really bored at work and 3. extremely gullible. Hey, I can’t even really say anything, I fell for it, too. The webcam setup, the intimate candles, the friend coming in… I get it, girl just wanted to show off her sweet moves. My husband, on the other hand, call its bluff from the get-go. Kudos to you, hubby…apparently you’re on Jimmy Kimmel’s wavelength. He was the mastermind behind this epic prank and it was pretty awesome. If you missed it, click the picture below for the original video!

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Finally, the last little piece of the internet that made me smile today was a video of a man waking up from surgery with a bout of temporary amnesia and finding out that the pretty lady sitting next to him was actually his wife. It’s really an adorable video, but I can’t help but think that Kimmel was up to no good again. Either way, check out this sweet video by clicking below!

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What was your feel good Tuesday story?

XO

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