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Best Nude Lipstick

For everyday, I'm a bb cream, eyeliner and Chapstick kinda girl but from time to time, I do enjoy getting glammed up and putting my other face on.  My favorite made up look is the smokey eye and nude lip combo.  It is dramatic, sexy and honestly looks good on everyone.  

But, up until recently I had the most difficult time finding the perfect nude lipstick.  I have darker, pigmented lips, which may or may not be more common to Asians.  I would often see "the perfect nude lipstick" in magazines and blogs and hunt it down only to find that it looked anything but nude on my lips.  After many failed attempts, I resorted to using foundation on my lips and going over it with lip gloss. 

I would often lament to my dear friends T & C, who also suffer from the dark pigmented lip syndrome, about how it was impossible to find a good nude lip color.  This year, we all found THE perfect nude color for each of us, but interestingly enough, they are not interchangeable.  T's Stila one looked bare and nude on her but didn't on me.  Lip color is so different on each person so start with these 3 options and see if any of them work for you! Happy hunting!


Tropical Print Maxi Dress

Zara Dress  |  Ray-Ban Sunnies  |  Woven Clutch (similar)  |  LUV AJ Crystal Cross Necklace
Giles & Brother, Hermes, Madewell, Jules Smith Bracelets

I tried this dress on last month while I was in the Philippines.  I loved the breeziness and the tropical print right away but my sister brought up a good point.  

"How often are you really gonna wear that?"

" know, one day when I have a house with a backyard and I host a summer soiree, the dress would be perfect!"

But she had a point, as she often does and she was right, as she often I reluctantly put the dress back on the hanger.  

Don't worry! The story ends well.  Just days later, the Zara sale came along and the rest is history.  Now if I just had a summer soiree to attend...


Boxy Crop Top

Top from Korea  |  Forever21 Leather Shorts  |  Old Navy Chambray Shirt  |  ALO Sunnies 

A couple of months ago, I did a series on how to wear bustier crop tops.  Today, I want you to meet  the bustier crop top's more versatile and wearable cousin: the boxy crop top.  After seeing these down the runway last Fall, I couldn't wait to get my hands on one.  I picked this one up in Korea last month.  It has a lot of swing and movement to it.  Paired with anything high waisted, it shows a minimal amount of skin unless I'm doing the wave or something, which I don't find myself doing on a regular basis.

Interested in trying out the trend?  Urban Outfitters has some good options: here, here and here!


Nordstrom Anniversary Sale!!

Nordstrom Anniversary Sale 2013 is finally live! Here are some of my top picks from the sale.  Scroll over the items to see the sale price!


All White Summer Look

Indian Necklaces (here and here)  |  Giles & Brother Nail Cuff  |  ASOS Gold Bands

Iced coffee, pedicures and wearing white....some of the best things about Summer.  I love white anything and everything for Summer.  I don't think you can get any sexier than a little white dress against tan skin.  There's just something about it.

So while I'm still on the hunt for the perfect little white dress, I threw together this all white outfit for a girls night out last weekend.  I like the structured origami skirt paired with a casual tee and then stacked with a whole lotta neckbling.  Been loving silver jewelry as of late but of course, I don't hold back from wearing my gold stuff either. can and will go on even after you mix metals.

By the way, is anyone watching the Bachelorette?  I'm rooting for Chris Siegfried all the way! Who are you rooting for and why?  


Barong Tagalog Inspired

Zara Top (similar)  |  Forever21 Faux Leather Shorts  |  Celine Luggage Tote
Michael Antonio Shoes (now $19!)  |  Celine Sunglasses  |  LUV AJ Crystal Cross Necklace

For those of you who may not know, I'm a third culture kid.  My parents are Korean, but moved us to the Philippines when I was 3.  I lived in Manila for the next 15 years until I came Stateside for college and the rest is history.  

Growing up in Manila, I saw men including my dad wearing Barong Tagalogs on a daily basis.  I always thought they were quite intricate and beautiful.  When I saw this top at Zara, the detailed embroidery caught my eye and it reminded me so much of a barong.  

It's rare and special when an article of clothing becomes so much more than just that.  When it brings back memories of my baby brother proudly donning his very first barong as a 3 year old ring boy.  Or that time when I cried into my dad's barong while waiting to get stitches at the hospital.  Moments I hold so dear in my heart brought back by this unsuspecting shirt.  How could I not pick it up?  That's the story I told hubby anyway. ;)

To bring this very traditional top to modern day, I paired it with a teeny tiny pair of faux leather shorts.  I like how the modest top and the come-hither shorts are playing off each other.  

Do you have any articles of clothing that you hold dear? That bring back memories?  Please share your stories..


Jumper Around

Prada Vela Backpack  |   Converse Shoes  |  ALO Sunnies (Korean Brand)  |  Forever21 Necklace

This outfit feels so fun and youthful and I can just picture myself skipping down Bascom Hill at my Alma Mater (Go Badgers!)  The thing is, although I'm (give or take...okay fine, take, TAKE!!) 10 years post college days, in my core, I still feel a glorious 21.  I'm an instagramming Belieber so that makes me hip and with the times, right? Right?  And then, reality hits when I'm in line at Forever21 sandwiched between a 12 year old girl and her even younger sister.  I've often wondered "At what age should people let Forever21 go?"  Deep thoughts, anyone? 


White Leather Cut Out Shirt

Zara Faux Leather Cut-Out Top (on sale now for $39!)  |  Aritzia Talula Shorts  |  Zara shoes (old)  
J.Crew Necklace (similar)  |  Clutch from the Philippines (similar)  |  Silver Cuff (designed by my sister's mother-in-law)

If you follow me on Instagram, you'll know that I passed on a white, dye-cut, faux leather skirt while I was in Seoul and couldn't stop thinking about it afterwards.  So I was excited to find this Zara top in an almost identical fabric.  

Initially, I thought I would pair it with a short white mini for a white hot summer look.  And then, I thought it would also pair well with some distressed boyfriend jeans.  But for it's debut, I ended up pairing it with these mid length shorts in a very classic tan color.  The top was really boxy and it worked well with the longer length shorts.  I topped it off with my J.Crew necklace I wear all the time, but this time, I put all the chains back and kept just the crystals in front for a more pulled together, mature look.  


All Black Summer Look

Madewell Scenic View Top  |  Madewell Shorts (similar) |  Zara shoes
Indian Necklaces from ebay (here and here)  |  Clutch from the Philippines (similar)

I picked up this boxy crop top at the Madewell party I hosted a couple of months ago.  It's one of those business in the front, party in the back pieces.  I like how basic it is from the front but then, the back has these large scalloped edges that overlap.  I paired it with high-waisted shorts and pinned the shirt so only the teensiest triangle of skin would be available for viewing.  I had the shorts from years ago but the fabric was very similar and I was digging the matchy matchy look.

I topped the very understated outfit with some very overstated Indian jewelry I got on ebay (both pieces under $15!).  That's a lot of visual interest for not a lot of cash and that is always okay by me.

I had a super busy holiday weekend that left me exhausted and at least a couple pounds heavier.  How was your long weekend?  


Mirrored Tropical Print Dress

Zara Dress (similar)  |  Zara Sandals (now $25!)  |  Woven Clutch from the Philippines (similar)
LUV AJ Crystal Cross Necklace (on sale for $93 here!)  |  Essie Blanc Nail Polish  |  ALO Sunnies (Korean brand)

This dress features 2 of my favorite trends this summer: the mirrored look and the tropical print.  Mirrored, symmetrical prints are huge right now and work well on dresses, tops and even pants.  

I love how roomy (translation: forgiving) this dress is.  I had Italian the other night, wearing this dress and after platters of pizza, pasta and calamari, I was still breathing easy while I imagine my counterparts were secretly unbuttoning their pants.  

The hem of this dress is quite short but I realized (the hard way) that the short length is necessary to keep the over-sized dress from looking matronly.  And when I say the hard way, I am admitting that yes, I was the blockhead that took it to the tailor to lengthen it and then took it back to shorten it again, which means I paid twice to get it back to the original state.  Not my proudest moment...