31 October 2013

Clarisonic Deep Pore Set Review

Ok, so it's been about six weeks since I started using the Clarisonic Deep Pore Cleansing system. The combination of all three pieces promises to control oil and noticeably minimize large pores. While the brush head is recommended for all skin types who have pores issues, the cleanser and mask are marketed toward individuals battling to control both. It's recommended that the mask is used a couple times a week in conjunction with the cleanser.

As I previously wrote about, I love my Clarisonic and opted for the acne brush over the deep pore one. However, I couldn't resist the urge when they packaged it up so nicely and talked those sweet words about smooth skin and disappearing pores.

When I used other cleansers that originally came with my brush, I felt they were more like detergent. Very drying and too harsh on even my oily face. Stuff like this tends to make the situation worse, as your skin attempts to overcompensate and therefore produces even more oil.

I found this deep pore cleanser to be less drying, but not by much. But felt that it cleansed in lieu of stripping moisture from the skin. So, I didn't have a problem using it twice a day, as long as I moisturized after (as I have to do anyway). The problem with this cleanser is that it is entirely too fragranced. I am sensitive to smells, but it's not like this is going to trigger a headache, but there's potential for a sneezing attack. It may sound odd to say keep it away from your nostrils and mouth, as you would think you would do that with most cleansers anyway. But seriously, this time, really take heed. It kind of stings or irritates my nasal passage and it tastes positively horrible.

Of course none of them taste pleasant, but none of my other cleansers leave any bitter afterthoughts in my mind. I can't even recall a taste. And that means something. In case you're curious, I rotate Neutrogena stress relief scrub, Murad AHA cleanser, Dr. Perricone vitamin C cleanser and Clean & Clear Soft scrub.

As for the mask, the instructions suggest that when you use it, do so right after cleansing, leave it on for fifteen minutes and then use your Clarisonic to remove it. But listen closely....


I find that it is entirely too drying to use this method. What I found works best is to use it after a milder cleanser, and remove it by rinsing off as I do any other mask.

As for the brush, I don't hate it. At first, I couldn't really tell the difference between this and my normal brush, but after several days I felt that it was denser and plusher than the acne brush, with shorter bristles. But the brush itself seems to clean well.

So, leaving you with my final thoughts - don't bother.

The kit retails for about $65 at most retailers, but I suggest you save your money and buy just the brush instead if you're truly interested. Although my breakouts have been tame as of late, I will likely return to my acne brush head after I finish with this one. However, I did see that they now offer Luxe High Performance brush heads, and I'm super intrigued (I'm a sucker for words like 'luxe'), so it's pretty likely that I'll have another review for you soon!

*This is not a sponsored posts, all products discussed were purchased with my own money. The opinions expressed are my own.

29 October 2013

DD's Style File - Dress Down Day

Dress down day, that's what the kids call it in school, right?

But really though, can you guys believe it?! I'm actually rockin' sweats and sneakers on the blog today! Yep, I actually own some, which some of my close friends totally would not believe I even own and wear when I'm not working out. Hey, I like to get comfortable too, and some days its just necessary, y'know.

Cold shoulder top - Forever 21
Gray joggers - Zara
Leopard foldover clutch - Forever 21
Black wedge sneaker - Simply Vera for Kohl's
Earrings - Stately Steel
I love me some joggers though, especially the ones with the tapered ankle. I'm the first one who wouldn't be shy about wearing sweatpants and heels. I know some say it's a fashion "don't," but for me it's a little glam meets a bit of street. However, for this day, it was all about cute, cool and comfortable - hence the wedge sneakers. But either way I'd toss on a big, slouchy sweater or sweatshirt and off I go.

I'm not big on studs, but I thought the neckline added a little baddie, no?

Denim jacket - Old Navy (old)

I really gravitate to off the shoulder stuff too, pretty much just as much as I love leopard print. And even though this top was a bit different from my normal style choices, it sang to me from the rack as I walked by (think Pier One commercial). You all might be slightly surprised to know that as much as I buy new things, this denim jacket is an oldie, but goodie. I got it at Old Navy for about $20 like nine years ago and it's a workhorse, it's takes me through spring and fall with a pashmina double wrapped around my neck, wards off the chill on cool summer nights, and adds some casual ease to business pieces.

I'm curious whether you ladies think I'd be committing a fashion crime by wearing stilettos and sweats, so feel free to drop me a comment below!

Until next time, beauties, have a fabulous week!

24 October 2013

Diva's Desires - Fall Dresses

I haven't done one of these in a minute, but let me just put it out in the atmosphere...for fall, I desire dresses, but more specifically dresses with sleeves.

Fall Dresses

I want weather appropriate dresses that compliment the figure, by skimming, not clinging, to my shape.
I want work appropriate choices that keep me warm in the office without needing an extra layer, but are chic enough to take me through the weekend with a scarf swirled about my neck finished off with ankle booties and patterned tights.
Give me cozy knit fabrics in flirty silhouettes, that leave me feeling fly, not frumpy.
And if you please, as wrinkle free as possible, with forgiving cuts that leave room, because I like to eat. 
I mean, 'tis is the season for apple cider, pumpkin laced everything, sprinkled with a bag of Halloween candy and a dash of Thanksgiving and Christmas dinner - so a little wiggle room becomes very necessary.

(this post has been sponsored by a frustrating shopping experience, as all these lovely ideas found online are not so readily available in stores.)


22 October 2013

DD's Style File - Little Leopard

Y'all...this weather is getting bananas. When I wake up in the morning it's freezing, at lunchtime it's chilly, at four o'clock it's 65 degrees, by evening it's so cold I had to finally break down and turn on the furnace. Now, tell me how in the heck do you get dressed for that??

Since it's cold enough for a turtleneck I decided to layer that under a cropped jacket and kept the look sleek with black tuxedo pants.

Crop leopard jacket - vintage
Tuxedo pants - The Limited
Turtleneck - old
Red pumps - Michael Kors

Instead going for all black, I added the glossy red patent pumps. A pair of great red pumps are a staple that can be hard to find, fortunately these Michael Kors just might fit the bill for me. The right height, the perfect shade of red (I like a true red) and they seem to be fairly comfortable.

Another win was this leopard jacket, which was an awesome thrift find. I love thrifting, but don't always have the greatest success finding pieces. However, with this I found a classic, timeless piece that I plan to use as a mainstay in my wardrobe. I've already had it for several years now, but of course there's always room for more leopard. *big smile*

Quilted bag - Dots
Watch - ALDO
Bracelet & rings - The Limited
nail color - CND Sugared Spice
 One of my current "diva desires" is a new cape. I have a black one in wool, but would like to add another. I had found the perfect one at Victoria Secret and planned to purchase it with the gift card I'd gotten for my birthday. However, as I finished another fifteen minutes or so of shopping after adding it to my basket, I went to check out only to find that it had be snagged out of my basket. And apparently, it was the last one! Like, seriously, Vicky?! Needless to say, I was salty, and I'm not ashamed to say - I still am. [insert pouty face here]
Anywho, we'll see how that develops... In the meantime, I hope you lovelies are having a fabulous week!
This post is also being linked to this week's Style Me Friday link up, hosted by The Fashionista Next Door and IFB's Project #119: Pump It Up.


15 October 2013

Fall Fever Wardrobe Haul!

My world has been super busy and I've been a bit under the weather, but I'm feeling better and I'm excited to share the pieces I've purchased for this season with you all! I'm calling it my "fall haul" because I've been collecting various pieces since around August, but just really started pulling them out.

So let's dig in, shall we...

 Look #1 
  Leopard sheath dress - The Limited
Red MK pumps - Dillards (similar)
Black quilted clutch - Dots (old)
Gold collar necklace - Dillards
Nothing's better than a knee length sheath dress to add to your wardrobe, especially one with sleeves! Very versatile because the feel of the dress can be switched up by wearing it under blazers and cardigans, adding tights and boots or simply switching up the heels and jewelry. 
Look #2 
 Faux leather peplum top - Target
Leopard pink skirt - The Limited
 Red MK pumps - Dillards
Black quilted clutch - Dots (old)
Gold collar necklace - Dillards
Great quality faux leather piece from Target! Peplum is a sweet style, so making it black leather just gives it some bite! (I would love to see it done it white too...) 

Look #3 
 Animal print top - Forever 21
Hunter green harem pants - Nordstrom Rack
Cognac suede bootie - INC for Macys (old)
Yellow mini satchel - Phillip Lim for Target (sold out)
Gold link necklace - JCPenney (old)

I love wearing stylish pieces that are comfortable, like slouchy tops and sweaters and loose fitting pants. This kind of look can even be dressed up a little more by adding a blazer in a heavier fabric, like tweed, and a chunky scarf.

Look #4 
 Gray faux leather zip top - Forever 21
Black coated skinnies - The Limited
Suede buckle peep toe booties - BCBG (old)
Black quilted clutch - Dots (old)

Coated skinnies offer a nice sleek look, like a cigarette pant, and are more substantial than jeggings, which is perfect for the cooler temps. Short sleeves can be layered over long sleeve tissue tees to add a layer of warmth. A striped print long tee can tone down the "bad girl" feel this look gives off as well.

Look #5 
 Orange top with faux leather - Nordstrom Rack
Black coated pencil skirt - The Limited
Suede buckle peep toe booties - BCBG (old)
Black quilted clutch - Dots (old)
Gold link necklace - JCPenney (old)

 The black coating and shiny leather provide some edge for this look, adding a blazer and tights can make it office friendly.

Look #6

 Faux leather dress - The Limited
Cream boyfriend blazer - Lauren Conrad for Kohls
Red MK pumps - Dillards
Gold clutch - Cosmopolitan for JCPenney
Gold collar necklace - Dillards

Perfect dress for date night or girls night, and the girlish A-line shape can make the leather more office friendly with a blazer, cardigan or turtleneck paired with low key pumps.

Look #7
Satin cobalt top - Mango for JCPenney
Polka dot pencil skirt - The Limited
Lionhead necklace - The Limited (old)
Red MK pumps - Dillards
Gold clutch - Cosmopolitan for JCPenney

Cobalt is one of the on trend colors of the season. A lighter weight satin top is seasonless and adds some texture dimension when layered under heavy knit cocoon cardigans.
Look #8 
  Cream knit sweater - Old Navy
Denim vest - The Limited
Olive harem pants - Forever 21
Gold snakeskin pump - Jessica Simpson
Yellow mini satchel - Phillip Lim for Target (sold out)
Turquoise plate necklace - Dillards

A cream lightweight knit sweater is wonderful for chillier seasons, works great with jeans, skirts or dress pants and adds warmth without bulk. Metallics, like leopard print, work like neutrals, and can be interchanged with everything from dark hues like Bordeaux (I hate the word 'oxblood') and hunter green to your brights like citron and fuchsia.

Although it was totally unintentional, it easy to see the trends I fell in love with this season - namely leather and leopard with a dose of metallic! The weather here has been beautiful and still pretty warm, and I'm excited to start integrating these pieces into my wardrobe.

I also want to take a moment to give a HUGE thank you to my cousin, Kelly, for lending me her photography skills to help me pull this post together! I'm really looking forward to working with you more!

On that note, I hope I've provided you ladies with some inspiration or styling ideas and now I'm off to pack for a work trip!

You divas make it fabulous week!

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03 October 2013

DD's Style File - It's Fall Y'all!

I didn't want to accept it. I was so against it that it was like being dragged someplace you don't want to go, practically kicking, screaming and clutching on for dear life.


Yep, as in the fall season. Don't get me wrong, I don't hate fall. I find it to be an absolutely beautiful time of year and I love all the smells associated with autumn. Along with the impending holiday season happiness. And yes, of course, the love of fall wardrobes.

However, it also means I have to let go of my summer frocks. Light as air, frothy materials and mini skirts with bronzy, bare legs.

And here in the northeast, fall is brief.

The brevity happens to be the biggest problem with fall. It means "winter is coming" (shout out to all my fellow Game of Thrones fans!). Which, to me, represents cold, cold, cold. Oh, and blizzards. And ugly, frumpy boots made for shoveling and snow stomping. And big marshmallow puffer coats made for warmth, not visual appeal...even if it is leopard lined and from Betsey Johnson.


But I've finally accepted that I might as well embrace fall and enjoy the comfortable temps while I can.

So I did what comes most naturally - went shopping!

Red coat - Target
Black & white striped dress - Target
Polka dot blouse - The Limited
Cobalt handbag - Target
Snake print belt - The Limited
Nude pumps - old

You'll notice that the majority of this look came from Target. I have a love/hate relationship with this coat though. I mean, I love it's vibrancy and the weight of it and the cute bird lining. But I hate it for the same reasons. Because I couldn't just leave it in the store on the rack due to all it's cuteness and fall appropriateness. All on top of my need for a new trench. BUT I didn't love the price. One bit.

$50 for a trench from Target is practically wallet robbery. Yet, I paid it anyway. On the opposite side, I got this dress off the clearance rack for ten bucks. And it was ten bucks very well spent, I plan to mix 'n mingle this in my wardrobe regularly.

My "something blue" is my gorgois cobalt handbag. Which I gazed at lovingly early last month, but ultimately put it down and left the store without it. Only to ponder its eye catching loveliness for several days following... Great thing though, I got a Target gift card for my birthday, so needless to say, I made getting my hands on this bag priority one.

I will say, it is not the most well constructed bag, compared to others I've seen or purchased at Target. The quality leaves a bit to be desired. However, I plan to not love it too hard (i.e., not make it my every day bag from October to April) and enjoy the time I have with it.

Another plus to all this, is that I finally signed up for a Target Red card, the debit version. So I do get 5% off purchases and free shipping from Target.com. Why in sweet baby Jesus' name I waited so long to do that, as much a I shop at Target, I do not know.

Sike...I'm lying.

I do know. It's because I didn't realize they offered a debit version. I thought that it was credit only and I didn't need another one of those. But that Red card matched with weekly mobile Target coupons can save you enough dollars to make you feel a little less guilty about that buggy full of merchandise you rolled out of the store with. So, if you don't have one already, I'd suggest you sign up asap! (no, this is not a sponsored post, I am just a Target fanatic)

Speaking of Target....  If you haven't yet done so, today is the last day to enter to win my Fall Fabulous Mini Haul giveaway featuring a Phillip Lim x Target Yellow Mini Satchel! Now go quickly while you still have time to enter!

Have a great weekend!

This post is also a submission for IFB Project #116.

01 October 2013

DD's Style File - Toto, Is That You??

Ok, so the road obviously isn't yellow, but as I was editing I stopped and thought that this photo seriously made Toonchie and I look like our own little knockoff version of the Wizard of Oz...

Blue dot dress - The Limited
Yellow blazer - The Limited
Multi print shoe - Nine West
Multi color necklace - thrifted

But let's talk for a minute... Let's talk about how this was just not a great photo shoot day. Like this is seriously the only photo that came out well.

I decided to do a little multitasking and take pictures in between dropping my mom off for errands. However, imagine my delight once I got to my destination and I realized that I'd left my shutter release at home. I. Was. Tickled. Pink.

And to further add insult to injury, for whatever reason, the camera self timer did not want to play nice. So, if it wasn't for this one photo, it would've been a total waste of time. So thank goodness there was at least one in the bunch.

But thankfully my little guy was being on his best behavior (unlike the other day at the park), so I guess I can be grateful for that too... I do love this photo though, so I'm probably going to get a copy framed and add it to the family portrait wall in my house.

But I have to admit that it was rather hilarious to me when I realized the blue dress, reddish shoes and a pup chillin' at my side felt kinda reminiscent of an image of Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz lol!


I will say, although the story of Oz is one of my all time favorites, I'm definitely feeling my polka dots over Ms. Dorothy's gingham....but of course I'm biased. *wink*
I hope all of you all of having a great start to your week! If you haven't yet done so, I encourage you to enter my Fall Fabulous Mini Haul featuring a Phillip Lim for Target Mini Satchel! There's only two more days before the giveaway closes!