Monday Motivation: Sept 19, 2016

Happy Monday! I’m starting off this week back in Pittsburgh, PA to recruit at my alma mater, Carnegie Mellon University. It’s pretty exciting being back and seeing all the changes the school’s gone through, which simultaneously reminds me of how old I am…le sigh. I can tell it’s going to be a good week, so here’s some fun stuff from around the web to boost yours!

  • I just can’t avoid politics with the upcoming election. I’m very strongly pro-Hillary, and this read on what Trump means for America shines a light on why.
  • I’ve posted about The Moth before, but if you haven’t had a chance to check out the live event yet listen to a few of the stories here!
  • The phrase “the camera adds 10 pounds” is actually kind of true.

Have a great start to your week!

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How To Store Make-up Palettes

Up until recently, I had no idea how to store my make-up palettes. Usually, I just stuff whatever make-up I have into my giant acrylic organizer (found at my happy place, The Container Store).

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Previously, everything was stuffed into here

I found an organization hack that helped me declutter the vanity + repurpose something that I’m sure most of you have laying around your house.

Grab a paper sorter – you can find super cheap ones in the office section of any furniture or organization store. I had bought mine for my desk, but found that I wasn’t actually using it much. It needed a new purpose! Then, put all your palettes together, with the largest on the bottom.

 

Take your palettes and put them in the sorter by size, with the tallest in the back. This way, you can see all of your palettes at one glance!

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And viola! Set your sorter anywhere you want for a simple, efficient + elegant organizing solution! Next step: spray paint the sorter gold 🙂

P.S. This organizing trick isn’t just for palettes! You can try it with anything of that shape — books, magazines, popcorn packets — have fun with it!

Monday Motivation: Sept 12, 2016

Happy Monday! It’s been a while since I’ve posted + I’ve missed it so! I got back last night from a trip to China with my family — it was our last one before my brother goes to college + so much fun! Look out for a post about our trip soon! Until then, here’s some much needed Monday Motivation. Enjoy!

  • Anyone love wine as much as I do? I saw these Spanish-style wine glasses + think they would look so good on a bar cart!
  • With all the recent turmoil going on in the world, I was especially upset about the Burkini ban in parts of France. Read about its effects from a Muslim girl’s point of view.
  • On that note, this little girl seems to have some ideas for President Obama on how to make the country better.
  • This graph on how to leave a party is so funny, and sadly, kind of necessary.

Enjoy your Monday evening!

Beauty Diaries: Highlighters

If you’re not familiar with the highlighting revolution, no, I’m not talking about a bright yellow highlighter you use in school. I’m not a make-up guru by any means, but I’ve been watching more YouTube tutorials + following some beauty bloggers (my favorite is Deepica Mutyala, for all my South Asian ladies) so I feel like I have the basic knowledge of what’s out there. Still, everytime I walk into Sephora I’m overwhelmed with options — I feel like there are 30 new “must have” products each month, 100 different brands, and so many ways to package + use a single product. It’s almost impossible to pick something that you know + can trust!

As someone with a pretty standard make-up routine + minimal knowledge about the industry, I rarely venture into using new products. But recently I’ve found that I can’t live without a highlighter. These babies work! Highlighters are meant to do just that — highlight parts of your face that you want to accentuate.

Face Highlighting

I’ve narrowed down my favorite 3 highlighters that I’ve used — these were all introduced to me via Sephora employees, friends, or beauty vloggers + are not sponsored in any way.

PSA: How people take selfies without looking weird I’ll never know.

Watts Up — Benefit Cosmetics

I think this is the most popular highlighter, and for good reason. It comes in this pretty packaging + is very easy to use for even the most inexperienced people. This was the first highlighter I bought + I’ve been attached to it ever since. I usually swipe it on the highlight areas + then dab it in with a Beauty Blender. I like how it isn’t too glaring of a highlight but still shows up on my skin tone.

Face Illuminator in Addiction — Laura Mercier

I got this compact (in the tone Addiction) after it was recommended by multiple beauty vloggers. And secretly, I wanted to get the fan brush used to apply it with 🙂 The actual powder in the compact is really pretty + shimmery, but it surprisingly doesn’t come on too strong. I use this sometimes if I don’t want too much on my face or add it on top of another highlighter for an extra shimmer. I like the dewy look it gives me, but not sure if it’s worth the $$.

Luminizing Liquid Highlighter — Jouer Cosmetics

I’ll be honest — I only picked this up because I needed to hit a minimum when purchasing the liquid lipsticks from Jouer (side note: try the liquid lipsticks – they’re amazing!) I was pleasantly surprised! The highlighter looks kind of like a pen, and you need to twist the bottom of the pen for the highlighting liquid to come out of the brush. Then, you dab it on your face + blend! It’s actually a really pretty highlight, perhaps a little brighter than I’d like for everyday, but I do think that the tone I got (no 1. nude light) is too light for my skin tone.

 

What highlighters do you use + swear by? Are there any other products I should add to my routine?

Monday Motivation: Aug 29, 2016

Happy Monday! This weekend was filled with parties for every occasion — birthdays, graduations, going aways, weddings, and plain old end-of-summer celebrations. It was so fun seeing so many friends + family, but it definitely didn’t give me enough time to prepare for this week. I have a crazy few days coming up — I go on-call at work + am leaving for a family vacation to China on Saturday! More on that later…for now, here’s some Monday motivation!

  • With an upcoming vacay, I really needed this article on how to pack like a minimalist traveler. I always end up packing SO. MUCH. and use only half of what I bring. Hopefully this trip will be different!
  • This is a blog by + for millennials, so I had to mention this article all about how millennials don’t take enough vacation. Apparently, we’re the cause for companies giving less vacation days. Start booking your Fall trips + use those babies up!
  • Did you see these moments of Ina Garten aka the Barefood Contessa? They made me smile 🙂

 

Changing Careers: It’s Not You, It’s Me

These days I’ve been feeling a little lost. Why, you ask? I just hit my 2 year anniversary at work AKA it’s time for my quarter-life crisis. I’ve been working as a software engineer for the past two years at a company that I joined straight out of college. I’ve always known that at some point in my life I’m going to start my own business, but I have no idea when or what. As I’ve gotten more and more comfortable at my job, that entrepreneurial itch is getting stronger than ever. But, for some reason, I can’t seem to get myself to really pursue it yet. I’ve talked to a few of my friends about this “two year itch”, whether it’s to start a company or try a different career path, and most millennials I know are facing the same dilemma.

Another thing a lot of millennials are dealing with right now — dating. I’m not single but a few of my good friends are, and it seems so stressful! Often, me and my girlfriends will sit down with a glass of wine + talk about everything in our lives ranging from relationships to our careers. When it comes to dating, I always hear about how difficult it is to find something real in this day and age. With a new dating app coming out every other month + people wanting to settle down later in life, it seems harder than ever to find that special someone. As someone on the outside, I feel like I don’t know the full story of what it’s like to date in 2016. What I do know is that this culture of having endless possibilities and not willing to settle can make even the people looking for love a little cynical. And understandably so — it’s a tough world out there! But sometimes, when I hear my friends’ stories about their random hookups or “relationships” that just fizzled out, I can’t help but think that maybe, just maybe, they don’t want that serious relationship either. I’ve even told some of my friends just as much — even though they theoretically want a good, real, long relationship, do they ever think that they’re subconsciously just not ready for it?

That brings me to my recent lamenting over what to do with my life. It occurred to me that my current situation and my friends’ dating lives are pretty similar. I’m like a single twenty-something and entrepreneurship is like the perfect relationship I’ve been looking for but am too scared to actually go for. Think about it — there are more resources than ever to help us find exactly what we want to do, and entrepreneurship is a viable career for more young people than ever before. Then what’s stopping me from biting the bullet? It’s not that I don’t have opportunity. In fact, this is the exact time I should be pursuing my passions. I don’t have any dependents, am financially stable, have a family that is willing to support me, and have access to all the resources in the world. So I’ve come to the tough conclusion that what’s stopping me from chasing my dreams + reaching my goals is….me. I’m hoping that writing it out for the world to see will be the first step towards actually doing it  🙂

What are your biggest goals and dreams at this time in your life? What’s stopping you from working towards them?

Monday Motivation: Aug 22, 2016

Happy Monday! We had record high temperatures in Seattle this weekend and a bajillion parties to attend as a result. It was so fun celebrating so many graduations, birthdays, and send-offs, so much fun in fact, that I took the whole Sunday to recuperate 😉 Nothing like some motivation to start the last week of August with a bang!

  • I have to try this recipe out. It looks healthy, yummy, and easy to make, which is perfect for someone like me who is not at all a chef.
  • My carry-on suitcase handle broke on a recent trip so I’m on the lookout for a new case. I’ve heard about “smart” suitcases, but the Away case seems to be the most reliable + well-reviewed so far. It has a USB port on the case so you can charge your devices wherever you are, and comes with a ton of compartments — the real selling point for an organizing freak like me 🙂
  • The Summer Olympics are over, but it’s always a good time to look back at one of the greatest gymnasts of all time — Simone Biles.

Hope you have a great start to your week!

Style Diaries: Dressing A Bodycon For Work

Summertime always provides a predicament — how do I dress for work in this weather without being inappropriate? Usually I throw a jacket over whatever I wear + call it a day, but I almost always end up sweating by the time I make it to the office. Recently, I was staring at my closet full of sweaters + party dresses, + came up with an outfit that did everything I wanted — so obviously I had to share!

I started with a midi bodycon dress (similar) from one of my favorite stores in the world, Aritzia. I love that all their pieces are amazing quality + consist of solid, simple designs — they’re perfect for layering + mix-and-matching, so to me it’s always worth the investment.

 

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Tone it down with sneakers. This pair from Vans is perfect!

For some of my not-so-busty friends, this might be enough for a work outfit. For someone like me (hello, Ds), anything tight or semi-low cut makes me look like I’m going to the club. So, how do you fix this? Take a Fall favorite, the classic button-down shirt. I wore a simple, slouchy white button-down (similar) from Nordstrom. Unbutton a few of the bottom buttons, take the two sides, and tie them together right in the middle. If you weren’t wearing the dress underneath, it would look like a super-chic, 90s crop top.

 

 

 

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Anddddd, there you go! Slap on a pair of heels or sneakers (thank god those are back in style) + you have a cute yet conservative outfit that will take you from work to happy hour!

 

PS. Unfortunately I’m not a fancy blogger (yet) with a professional photographer, so my mirror shots will have to do! Hope you try this out yourself!

Monday Motivation (on Tuesday): Aug 16, 2016

Happy Tuesday! I got a case of the Mondays yesterday + wasn’t able to post my weekly Monday Motivation. Thank you all for being patient with me — it was one of those days where things come up + suddenly it’s 11pm and you don’t know where the time went! But not to worry, I still have some fun Internet links to share with you! I hope you all had fun + restful weekends. I was in Boston visiting my best friend (travel post coming soon!) + we had such a blast — except for the humidity + heat, oy vey! I’m kind of glad to be in normal-summer-weather-West Coast, but was less happy to get back to the daily grind today. Here’s a little post-Monday pick-me-up!

  • I love getting cash back however I can (loving the Nordstrom notes rolling in right now post-anniversary sale), so I was super excited to try Ibotta. It’s an app that gives you cash back on everyday purchases like medicine, groceries, even wine! Yup, get rewarded for buying wine. They published a super cool info-graph with all the data they’ve collected showing the cheapest days to buy certain things. Check it out!
  • Finding yummy + easy vegetarian recipes isn’t always that easy — especially finding one that actually turns out the way it looks in the pictures, which almost never happens for me. I was pleasantly surprised when I made this curried eggplant dish. It’s simple, quick, easy, and very yummy! Try it out + let me know what you think.
  • I. Love. Friend. Dates. You get all the benefits of a date without any of the pressure! I also love finding out cool new things to do when Seattle finally has nice weather, and this list of friend date ideas was perfect. Have other fun date ideas? Let me know!
  • A few of my close friends just moved away to go to graduate school (sad face), so I thought this candle would be perfect for those who are a little homesick. Not sure how well the scents really capture the states, but it’s a thoughtful + cute gift idea all the same!

Have a wonderful rest of your week + come back on Thursday for some stylish, yet comfy, outfit inspo to take you from work to play!

Monday Motivation: Aug 8, 2016

Happy Monday! Seattle showed some of its true colors with gloomy weather + even some rain, but nevertheless summertime fun ensued! This was my first year celebrating Seafair weekend on a boat — it was everything I dreamed of + more! My Sunday was on the lazier side as I was already dreading the upcoming work week. If you’re in the same boat (hehe) as me here’s some motivation to get your Monday going.

  • I’ve actually tried this workout before + it works! If you “don’t have time” to fit in a workout but are willing to make the effort, try this 7 minute workout.
  • Seattle peeps, Uber is offering discounted rides to + from the Woodinville wineries (and free rides between the wineries) for the rest of the weekends in August! DO IT.
  • If nothing else, this will make you laugh. #FLOTUS