Saturday, August 31, 2013

Happy Labor Day Weekend!

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Happy (early) Labor Day, lovelies!

Get out and enjoy the unofficial last weekend of summer.

xox,

E & J

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Elise's Thoughts on Senior Year (ish)

Today marks the first day of my senior year of college. Instead of participating in the hustle of the first days of school, the only days in which our campus (Jasmine and I attend the same school) resembles exactly that, a campus, I am sitting in the Starbucks on 81st and Broadway on New York's Upper West Side typing this up. By the time this hits your eyes I'll be a few hours into my fashion PR internship. It's quite the untraditional first day of school. I've never missed one before, but I must say, I'm so happy that I am.

Nothing will ever make me feel the way this city does. It's new everyday, it's exciting every moment. And even though I'm not new out here anymore-- my favorite baristas already know to start my drink when they see me walking by-- I still try to experience the city as if I were. That's why there's no place I'd rather be on the first day of my last year of school than the city.

I'd love to say that being near the end of school is bittersweet, but really, it's more sweet than bitter, which is odd, because I love school. But I've finally found a place where I fit, and surprisingly enough it's in an industry most people are told is cut throat and difficult to handle. And it really is. I'm just super competitive and motivated and the fast pace and crazy people thrill me. 

I return to school in Michigan after labor day, and I'm nervous, but glad that it's my last year. Everyone is posting sentiments about how sad it is that it's senior year, but I'm ready for change. I'm finally ready to get into that professional world, as scary as it seems. A lot of that credit has to go to my boss, who was so amazing and especially patient with me this summer and has really started to make me consider PR over editorial after graduation. Which I hope arrives quickly. 

Senior year is just a little roadblock on my way to working-world bliss. I know that seems so weird, but I love working. I'm at the Stephanie Skinner workaholic level (for those familiar with the hilarious but short lived Kell on Earth) minus the breakdowns, thankfully, and I love being that way. 

Now that I've rambled on for what seems like forever (but mostly I just need another coffee, mine's empty!), I wish everyone at my school a wonderful first day. I'll be celebrating this momentous occasion with a blowout and mimosa (they're not just for breakfast!) later tonight. 

XOX,
Elise

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

A College Kid's Guide to Saving Cash: Beauty

Whether you’re entering your final year of university (we are!) or finally getting into your own apartment, here are some money-saving tips so you don’t have to eat ramen noodles every day because you’re a broke mofo. 



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There's no denying that I am a beauty junkie. I have an arsenal of products that would put a magazine's beauty closet to shame. With that being said, it's really simple to spend a lot on beauty products especially if you happen to be a little (ok, a lot) high maintenance like me. So, how do you save money and still look phenom all the time?

First, the miracle product. Coconut oil. This is magic. I read an article on Fashionista earlier this month about one of the writers switching her whole beauty routine to include coconut oil. Curious, I ran to Whole Foods on my way home from work the next day (the one in Columbus Circle had TONS!) and bought myself a tub. It is magical. Killer for shaving, an awesome hair mask, and in the $9 range. I am forever indebted to Fashionista for giving me a play by play on how this stuff works so that I could convert. This saves you money on expensive hair treatments, shaving cream, makeup remover, and even face creams.

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If you wear makeup as much as I do, the costs start to add up. There are a lot of drugstore brands that are pretty amazing, though. It's been a process of trial and error, but I've found dupes for many of my favorite brands. Most of them, surprise, surprise, are from my favorite brand to feature in Lip Service picks, NYX. With pigmented products and a HUGE variety of colors and finishes, this brand has replaced a lot of my pricier picks. A few of the makeup artists at the major event we had at the start of this month were talking about their favorite NYX products... they were amazing so if they endorse the brand, there's even more reason for me to love it! I still believe in investing in a great foundation, but for the outliers, this brand is perfect. I bought $7 bronzer at the end of July that I'm in love with more than the Laura Geller baked bronzer I fought for on the phone after a late night QVC binge (I'll never do that again...swear). Another brand I swear by is Rimmel. They have amazing lipsticks and mascaras that are relatively cheap.

Looking put together is important. It doesn't always mean a full face of makeup, but it does mean taking care of how you look. And it doesn't have to be as expensive as you might imagine! With the above tips and a little experimentation, you can look gorge on a college girl's budget!

Good luck, and happy shopping!

XOX,

Elise

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

A College Kid's Guide to Saving Cash: Fashion

Whether you’re entering your final year of university (we are!) or finally getting into your own apartment, here are some money-saving tips so you don’t have to eat ramen noodles every day because you’re a broke mofo.
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Undoubtedly, if you’re in your final year of university or an entry-level gig, you’ve become a 9-5’er because of an internship or your big-kid job. And surely that internship/job has a dress code, for which you need clothing.

And, regardless, you have to clothe yourself. Walking around naked is frown upon among the general population.
  • Outlets: Outlet stores are hidden gems. While they’re (usually) few and far between, you can do yourself a great service by getting to one. Outlets are cheaper because it’s a company’s overflow or out-of-season stock, so they sell it a discounted price. Of course, don’t expect outlets to be having sales. Most items are marked as is, which can be a burden or a curse. One time at the VS outlet, I got a couple bras dirt cheap because they were mismarked. And shop outlets for all kinds of clothing. I always scour The Northface and Columbia outlets for fleece jackets, which are a staple in the Michiganian wardrobe.
  • Department stores: Much like outlets, department stores are great for getting quality clothing for a decent price. Personally, I have a hard time departments stores, because they’re not always organized and I’m a lazy shopper, but if you’re serious about saving, digging in the racks is a small price to pay.
  • Sales: Alway, always looks for sales! They’re not hard to find, you just have to shop at the right store at the right time. Right now, my favorite store H&M is having some killer sales. As a matter of fact, I picked up a pair of super cute orange shorts for $5 the other day. I would also like to add the regular price was only $12.95. So I got a steal for a steal! And yes, H&M is always reasonably priced, so I highly suggest shopping there especially for office wear.
  • Compare: Being jonesing for a leather jacket? Don’t impulse buy; shop around and see what the options are. Can you get it somewhere else for less? Are you actually paying an extra $50 for the brand name? Of course, this rule applies staple items for your wardrobe and electronics.
  • Staple items: Invest in staple pieces for your wardrobe. They may cost a little more up front, but in the long run they’ll save you money. Investing in a good quality blazer or cashmere sweater (and taking care of it!) is worth the money because you only have to buy it once. Buy a super cheap version and you’ll be regretting that decision when you’re buying it for the second or third time.
  • Repurpose: Before you throw out or donate clothing you don’t want ask yourself why you don’t wear it. I had a pair of shorts there were a weird length, but instead of throwing them out, I just rolled the legs a couple times and they were fashionable again. Saved myself the cost and trouble of looking for new shorts.
What are you fashion super-saver secrets?

Until next week, kiddies...

- J

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Events & The Industry

Happy mid-August, my darling readers! This summer has flown by, and it's absolutely killing me to know that I'll only be in the city for a short while more before returning to Michigan for school.

I've been fortunate enough to be in New York for a PR internship that I've completely fallen in love with. I've learned tons of lessons, most of them pointing to a major event that we held at the start of this month.

So, what exactly is it? It's a series of runway shows and presentations dedicated to the intimate apparel industry. Typically, trade shows are the way these items are showcased, and this event's goal is to provide a way for press to get a look at what's new in this ever-growing (and super cool) industry.

What most people see when it comes to events like this is the glamour of the fashion industry. But, there is SO MUCH more to the process.

There's...
  • Outreach
  • RSVPs
  • Follow-ups
  • Finding and securing sponsors
  • Rallying volunteers
  • Finding a venue
  • Working out production
And those are only the things that I could think of immediately.

I bring up this point a lot, but I think a lot of people fail to realize that fashion/beauty/lifestyle aren't always "glamorous" industries. People are always going on Instagram and Twitter to post the cool things their firms or publications are doing to make themselves look fabulous or like they plan/go to tons of amazing events. I'm guilty of it, and sometimes, there are amazing perks and events. BUT, that's not really how it is. Hard work goes into planning things and if you're a part of the planning process, you're probably also working through the event. If I posted pictures of the things I do on the daily, you would probably never want my job because it mostly consists of working at a computer (which I love. My computer is my baby). It takes a special kind of dedication and a special love for everyday routine and a willingness to stay behind the scenes to do well in this industry. That's what leads to the fabulous and glamorous every once in a while events that people show you. Lately I've just seen a prevalence in people who only believe in the glossy exterior of the industry, and now that I've seen it from the inside, I wanted to tell it like it is.

I'm going to be quite forward with you when it comes to today's moral: If you're not committed to the (I want to say boring or mundane, but it's not boring to me) everyday tasks or behind the scenes work, you don't deserve the glamour. You just don't. 

And now, as I finish my rant and step off of my soap box in these newly christened beauties,  

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I leave you with a little footage from our pretty exceptionally phenom event.




I hope I didn't dash too many dreams with this. I'm really fortunate to work in such an amazing sector of an equally amazing industry, and I just want people to know that there's a reality that transcends the glamorous look.

XOX,

Elise


Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Constructive Distraction: BuzzFeed

Procrastination doesn't have to be a total waste of time. This post highlights websites to make your time avoiding writing research papers and reading textbooks productive.


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This month's constructive distraction is BuzzFeed.

If you've ever received a compilation of .gifs ranging from life after college to why Matthew Lawrence is the best Lawrence brother, it probably originated from BuzzFeed.

Of course, BuzzFeed is more than just animal .gifs and hot guys. It's also news, opinion and life hacks.

If you haven't yet, get over to BuzzFeed and start exchanging relevant .gif lists with your friends.

Until next time...

Your Girls Under PRessure


Tuesday, August 13, 2013

A College Kid's Guide to Saving Cash: Alcohol

Whether you’re entering your final year of university (we are!) or finally getting into your own apartment, here are some money-saving tips so you don’t have to eat ramen noodles every day because you’re a broke mofo.

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Depending where you’re at in your collegiate career, you could be dedicating most of your paycheck to buying booze or you can’t remember the last time you had a drink. Either way, alcohol isn't cheap.
  • Mid-grade: Mixing drinks? Making punch? Don’t use top-shelf liquor. It’s intended to be drank straight, so unless you’re having shots or something on the rocks, save a few bucks and go mid-grade. 
  • BYOB: Hosting a party? Make sure to tell your guests it’s BYOB. Otherwise you’re going to blow most of your budget (and paycheck) on stocking alcohol for your get together. BYOB can also curb the shittiness of your guests; they’re likely to drink less when they have to bring their own booze.
  • Stay in: Remember the party you hosted in the previous tip? Yeah, you’re gonna host another one and probably another one. You’ll also attend a couple in the future. Drinking at home with friends is much cheaper than drinking at the bar. And remember they’re chipping in, so that makes the tab even more manageable.
  • Beer: Cocktails are great, but drinking beer is cheaper. In Michigan we’re all about our craft beers, so microbrews and speciality beers are readily available. No need to succumb to the domestic giants. You still get variety and flavor, but save a few bucks drinking brewskis instead of cocktails.
  • Bars: Headed to the bar for a friend’s birthday? Are you sick of sitting on your couch? Understandable, but make sure to ask about specials. Even better, try to go to bars you know are having specials. And if all else fails, remember brewskis over cocktails!
Have any alcohol money-saving tips? Our ears are always open.

Until next week, kiddies...

- J

Monday, August 12, 2013

Work or Play Lists

Hey everyone! Happy Monday!

The playlist posts Jasmine and I create have always been well-received on the blog, which makes me so, so happy!

I think it's time to get a little more connected with you all through these playlists, because as you know, a good playlist can totally turn around a work day or amp up productivity. Below, you will find a link to me on Spotify, where you can find all of the PR girl playlists I have featured here, plus a few new ones!

We'll start with the one I made right before my move out to the city. It's an oldie, but I like to listen to this every once in a while at work!



Click HERE! for my account and the rest of the playlists!

Happy listening!

XOX,

Elise
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Friday, August 9, 2013

Lip Service: August (NYX Edition...We didn't plan it we swear!)

As future PR people, it's super important to prep our pouts so we can confidently pitch and promote clients! Check out our top lip product picks this month!

Elise's Pick:
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Continuing my apologies for being so vacant on the blog this summer. Last weekend was our HUGE event, which I'll tell you way more about in a post sometime in the (hopefully) immediate future. I met a ton of people and did a lot of talking (albeit into a headset) so it was really important that I had a pretty pout. The downside? Sometimes professionalism means waiting until the closing party to don a bold color. So how exactly did I survive? My brand new (bought it the day before the event weekend kicked off!) NYX Jumbo Lip Pencil in Honey Nectar. It's like my natural lip color only prettier! And for $4.50 you can't really do better. The only comparably amazing thing you could get with that kind of money is a huge slurpee and a bag of those peach ring candies, which are all I ate over the weekend, but I digress. 

This pencil goes on smoothly, lasts a while, and looks crazy natural. I highly, highly recommend it!

Jasmine's Pick:
https://www.google.com/search?q=Lip+Gloss+w/+Mega+Shine&um=1&ie=UTF-8&hl=en&tbm=isch&source=og&sa=N&tab=wi&ei=YWD8UebnB6acyQGd-IDwDw&biw=1413&bih=707&sei=ZGD8UY7KBcqFyQH2qICIBw#um=1&hl=en&tbm=isch&sa=1&q=Nyx+mega+shine+lip+gloss+clear&oq=Nyx+mega+shine+lip+gloss+clear&gs_l=img.3..0i24.7176.9249.2.9398.10.10.0.0.0.0.132.634.9j1.10.0....0...1c.1.23.img..9.1.55.-zM9Pc6DhQQ&fp=1&biw=1413&bih=707&bav=on.2,or.r_cp.r_qf.&cad=b&bvm=pv.xjs.s.en_US.seW1cfrvSKg.O&facrc=_&imgdii=_&imgrc=FjHxmUOkfmXbaM%3A%3BHqEsgWudkqPKHM%3Bhttp%253A%252F%252Fecx.images-amazon.com%252Fimages%252FI%252F31%25252B1UYzMaKL.jpg%3Bhttp%253A%252F%252Fwww.preen.me%252Flook%252F396231%3B147%3B500
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Sometimes you need to embrace your natural lip color, so every girl needs a good clear lip gloss. My personal favorite is NYX Mega Shine lip gloss. You can pick up a tube for around five bucks from any cosmetics store. 

Also, clear glosses are a great top layer if you want to turn your favorite lip stain or stick into a gloss. So for five bucks, you can get a great multipurpose investment.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

A College Kid's Guide to Saving Cash: Food

Whether you’re entering your final year of university (we are!) or finally getting into your own apartment, here’s the first installment of a weekly post dedicated to money-saving tips so you don’t have to eat ramen noodles every day because you’re a broke mofo. 
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Let’s address the biggest elephant in the room: food.

Unless you’re still kicking it in your childhood room at mom and dad’s house or living in a dorm requiring a meal plan, odds are you’re grocery shopping a couple times a month.
  • Generic: Buying generic is the easiest way to save a few bucks. Picking the Meijer bread over Aunt Millie’s adds up over time. Here, it’s the difference between paying $1.50 and almost $4.00 for a loaf of bread. Of course, sometimes you have to splurge because the brand name is just better, but when you can pick generic.
    This rule doesn't apply to just food. It works for toiletries, medicines and other necessities.
  • Bulk: Depending on how much storage space you have, what you’re buying and how you and your roommates (if you ‘em) split food, this can be a money waster, so be careful! But for the most part, buying in bulk is good. Stick to non-perishable items: cereal, pasta, canned sauces, frozen veggies and fruits, etc.
    Again, this rule isn't limited to just food. I buy cleaning supplies and toiletries in bulk.
  • Restaurants: Not eating at restaurants all the time is probably the number one way to save money food. However, it’s inevitable you’re going to out with friends and grab food from a restaurant. Just be smart about it. Instead getting the $13 meal, maybe pick something of the appetizer menu. They’re usually equivalent to a one-person meal. Make sure to take home your leftovers. You’ll get two meals for the price of one. Another option: split a meal with a friend.
    Also, just because you’re trying to save money, don’t skimp on the tip. Nothing says “I'm an asshole” like a crappy tip. Remember, your server is also trying to make a living.
  • Budget: I know, I know, budgeting is not a fun concept, but you might as well get over it and start doing it now. At some point, you’ll have to create a budget for yourself to manage finances. How not get used to the concept on a small scale? Practice budgeting buy giving yourself a limit when grocery shopping.
  • Coupons: No one said you have to become an extreme couponer, but using coupons for things you regularly buy adds up after a while. Also take advantage of reward programs and other incentives from your grocers. These can also save you some cash.
What ways are you saving?

Until next week, kiddies...

- J