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Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Pacsafe in Cuba

One country. Two bags. Three different ways.

Most of my bags (sans backpacks) are super cute but not very functional--some can fit only my phone and maybe a lipstick, some close with only one small and weak magnet, and some are fitted with cute but thin straps that don't feel very secure.

Traveling was synonymous with lugging around an ugly, bulky backpack, because there are surprisingly few brands that marry fashion with function. Until now.

Pacsafe is a brand I've newly discovered that is a wanderer's dream. Their mission is to make our lives easier, so we can explore the world with one less, albeit huge, worry. Their bags have pickpocket-proof design, RFID-blocking technology (so passersby can't scan your credit cards from the outside and copy your payment info), turn-and-lock security hooks (so your bag can't be easily unclipped), and cut-resistant technology (so nobody can cut your straps or slash the bottom of your purse).

I chose two bags from their new Citysafe CX collection to take on my Cuba trip (this isn't to say I didn't feel safe in Cuba--the people of Cuba were actually very honest and lovely). On every getaway, it's usually tough trying to pack as light as possible but be as stylish as possible. I found the task easy with this carry-all tote that took me from shopping trips to beach days, and this convertible backpack that turned from a two-strapped backpack to a messenger bag to a PURSE.

I wanted to show you one of many unique, ingenious features Pacsafe utilizes.

Here you'll see how the zipper is secured to the bag. It's impossible to quickly zip open to access the bag's contents.

Sliding the bar at the top of the ring frees the zippers from its hold. This was actually difficult for even me to figure out at first without instructions, so a thief likely cannot figure it out in the split second opportunity they have to rob you.

Even when the zippers are free from the ring, they are interlocked. They need to be unhooked from each other before accessing the bag.

I am so about this brand! I really adore a quality brand that serves a unique purpose and does it with this much style. I didn't realize how much of my time traveling is spent worried about being pickpocketed--my hand is usually absentmindedly covering my bag's zipper pulls, or I'll wear my backpack at my front so I can guard it better. Pacsafe made it easy for me to relax and just enjoy myself.

Find my all-purpose tote here and my convertible backpack here in all colorways. You'll be a believer, too!


Tuesday, June 6, 2017

VIDEO: Supercharge Morocco

You guysss. I uploaded a video on YouTube! Are you proud of me? I'm imagining the photo above is of you, giving me a high five.

A little bit about my Morocco trip:

I went with the raddest influencer travel agency, Supercharge. They're based right here in New York City and travel the world with creators. I helped bring some people on board last round, and since I happen to know some seriously talented people, some of my best friends naturally joined us.

I knew this trip would be amazing, but I didn't know the extent of that truth. "When was the last time you did something for the first time?" was the theme of our weeklong excursion. We traveled from city to town to city to the Sahara Desert and back. We had the option of getting SIM cards but we opted to have no phone service and stay off the grid (for the most part). We went camel riding. We camped in the Sahara Desert. We rode ATVs. We went on a hot air balloon ride. We sang, we danced. We soaked up the culture, luxuriated in each other's company, and made some lifelong memories and friendships. I have some moments I will hold dear to my heart forever; like, I legitimately want to cry because they were so moving.

Every single one of us left saying this was our favorite trip ever. That's such an accomplishment.

I just wrapped my third #SuperchargeTrip last night to Cuba. Stay tuned for updates on that, it was quite the learning experience!


Wednesday, May 31, 2017

May Beauty Edit

I was really sick over the weekend (which sucked) but that meant I had the chance to shoot a major beauty product review of the products I've been using the last month (which ruled)!

Milk Makeup matcha cleanser, toner, and cooling water

Okay, y'all. This is kind of a game changer. Milk Makeup has a new solid cleanser, toner, and cooling water. This makes it completely TSA-friendly and ready to be thrown into your carry-on for any getaway! Matcha is really soothing and detoxifying for the skin, so that's less worry about travel-irritated skin. Plus this is the first solid toner in the world. That's pretty bananas.

Complete Frudia line, available here

I need to reintroduce you to Frudia. I've been a fan of them since their launch event I went to, and being the skincare addict I am, I tried all of their systems. They've got something for everyone: Blueberry for hydration, Citrus for brightening, Green Grape for pore control, and Pomegranate for multi-level moisture. The only thing I wish they had was a cleanser; I like trying entire lines.

My personal favorite was the pomegranate for moisture and the citrus for brightening. I'm still battling these cursed post-acne scars so I need all the help I can get.

A really impressive part about Frudia is that their line (sans the face masks) uses no additional water. Water is the #1 filler in a lot of skincare, but Frudia takes the time to pack their products with the good stuff.

This cream got my hands, joints, everywhere that gets dry through the cold months. I have pretty oily skin, so it was surprising to see my skin crack. This bad boy was ultra-moisturizing and yet versatile and able to be applied anywhere.

Facetory subscription box

Facetory is a gift from the face mask gods. Are you addicted to face masks like I am? Are you just as sad as I am that there are literally thousands of different kinds out there and you don't know where to begin or how to get your hands on them? Facetory's got your back.

A new subscription box of its kind, Facetory delivers a curated selection of sheet masks to you every month for only $5.95! That is such a great deal. Plus, if you sign up to their newsletters, you get another 10% off. I need face masks pretty much every night and especially on every flight/long car ride, so these are going to be put to good use.

CLEAN Reserve Blonde Rose & Sueded Oud fragrances

I am such a scent nerd. I always loved CLEAN fragrances because, duh, they smell very nice and clean. But CLEAN Reserve really takes it to the next level. Eau de parfum and super luxe, these high-end, sustainable fragrances elevate your everyday scent choices.

Blonde Rose is just what you'd expect: soft, feminine, simple. It's a fragrance that can never go wrong.

Sueded Oud is my new favorite. Oud is one of those things that I want to love so badly, but it's a little too strong for me in most scents. Sueded Oud is a fresh and creamy twist on your typical oud. It has the attitude of oud, just softened around the edges.

The best part? You can layer the two.

Hopeless Ophidian candle and soap

Nice candles and soaps fall under my love for fragrances, and are some of those things I personally need when indulging in self-care.

My friends over at Hopeless Lingerie just launched their epic candle and soap line and I couldn't be more proud of them. This scent of cedarwood, neroli, sweet orange, and black pepper perfectly balances lightness and darkness in mood and packaging. As above, so below.

Kiehl's coriander hand cream, coriander hand & body lotion, coriander body scrub, and ultra facial cream with SPF

These are some Kiehl's classics, but in a new-to-me scent. Obsessed. I'm also ashamed to admit that lotion wasn't a huge part of my life until recently, but it seriously makes all the difference. I've also been loving this face cream because it's really hydrating and has SPF. You must use SPF in your day-to-day life to combat wrinkles, skin cancer, and hyperpigmentation/darkening of acne scars!

From left to right: Aromatica Neroli Brightening Facial Oil, May Coop Raw Sauce, Dr. Jart+ Dermaclear Micro Water, Morihata Binchotan Facial Puff, J.One Jelly Pack, Mizon Black Snail All-in-One Cream, Too Cool For School Max in Pocket Lip Balm

And finally, the big mama. These are ALL K-beauty products I l.o.v.e. right now.

- The neroli brightening facial oil is amazing for acne scarring. Also, if you have hyperpigmentation (i.e. redness, sunspots, etc.) it should help just as much.

- May Coop's Raw Sauce is 93% maple tree sap and thicker than your typical essence without being sticky. It's really hydrating and gives your skin a dewy finish.

- The micro water is essentially what we know as "micellar water" and cleans your whole face, even your eyes, in one step. SOME people might stop there, but I believe firmly in double cleansing--so consider this cleansing #1.

- This facial puff looks menacing but is really gentle! You run it under water until it's soft (it almost becomes a jelly-like yet firm texture) and exfoliate the skin with it. It's great for helping to resurface skin. Use with soap/cleanser.

- The jelly pack is pretty cool. It does a ton of things: hydrates as a mask and primes for makeup while evening skin texture and boosting radiance. You can wear it at night or in the morning underneath makeup as a primer. It has hyaluronic acid and smooths your face like its own Facetune filter--seriously, check the reviews at the link above. Many say it's like daily Botox. What is this magic.

- I have dry lips, so lip balm is something I need on me at all times. These little guys are not only cute, they're very moisturizing and give you some color without the color settling into all the cracked parts of your lips (because, gross). It's a win-win for me.

What did you think of this beauty edit? Tell me in the comments below! I'd love to hear your personal faves as well!



Friday, May 26, 2017

Millennial Pink, Internalized Misogyny, and Cute Shoes

What moves you? Is it a person, a place, a thing?

Right now, for me, it's a color.

My wardrobe is currently screaming Millennial Pink and I've found empowerment and reclamation of my femininity in it.

Pink used to feel too soft; too gentle. I am all too aware that it was my own internalized misogyny that kept me from embracing the shade. I used to hate being called girly, or even feminine. Society teaches us that women are weak and things women like are lesser than others (i.e. everything from "bitch drinks" to "pens for women"...because God forbid we use a normal pen!), and I drank the Kool-Aid for a while. Very problematic of me and I own up to it completely.

Not sure if it's my karmic retribution or whatever, but I am proper OBSESSED with pink now.

It's abundantly clear that you can wear a pink dress and ballet-inspired heels and still look tough as nails. I feel like a yung Dolores Umbridge in this getup (I mean, I hate her, but she was a powerful woman, haha).

Unlearning patriarchal standards never looked so goooooood.

Missguided dress / Deandri belt / Aldo shoes

Photos by Noel McGrath


Monday, May 22, 2017

A Crossroads (+ I'm Hiring!)

I've been at a weird crossroads in my life.

I started blogging 10 years ago as an escape from real life, a way to fuel creativity, and to have a little space on the internet to call my own.

10 years is a long time. Things change.

The industry has waxed and waned many times over. Huge OG bloggers have altered their career paths and/or created exit strategies (some honorable mentions include Chiara Ferragni of The Blonde Salad and Leandra Medine of Man Repeller turning their blogs magazine-style and Rumi Neely of Fashion Toast creating a highly coveted clothing line).

With new platforms came new ways for creators to be influencers (Instagram didn't even exist when I started blogging, can you imagine that?). Oversaturation now abounds. When everyone's an influencer, is anyone an influencer? "App fatigue", a term that would have made no sense five years ago, became a real thing. Algorithms on Instagram and YouTube kind of screwed over creators who have been on the respective platforms since the beginning. I feel like my content is better than ever, and hardly anyone sees it, compared to before. Gone are the old days of growing two thousand followers a day and being featured on Instagram; numbers seem impossible to grow without the help of loop giveaways and other tactics. It's just a lot to keep up with. All of it.

In addition to that, I don't find the same satisfaction posting about what got me here in the first place. Cute clothes, pretty makeup, what version of avocado toast I decided to photograph and eat this morning. It all feels so...empty. I'm not knocking anyone who posts this, because I still do too (I mean, just look at the photos in this post), but I have so much to share with the world and I'm afraid of my only impression on you guys being this one-dimensional view of who I am.

I'm someone who fights for human rights. I'm someone who rescues animals. I'm someone who looks out for people financially struggling because heaven knows I grew up in their position. I'm someone who makes spectacularly ugly faces, who has 10,000 inside jokes with their significant other, who hates smiling but adores laughing, and who is bad at dancing and does it anyway.

There's the option of starting a YouTube channel. But that made me it too late? I'm so far behind in that sphere. I'm not sure if you knew this, but I've been filming and documenting my life for YEARS. Like, since 2012 or so. At the conclusion of each video story, my own fears of starting too late kept me from putting those clips up.

All these things had kept my spirits down over the last year or so. People say numbers don't matter, but they absolutely do when that's how you make your whole living. However, I've luckily been afforded the opportunities to find intrinsic value in helping other companies grow in the digital space behind the scenes, which helps me stay sane and motivated immensely. It gave me room to just say, "Eff it", and do whatever I want on the internet. You'll notice a lot less in-your-face ads and cheesy product placement, because I'm posting a lot of things that I want to post, instead of whatever makes me money.

I finally feel freed up to extend that carefreeness and desire to create, without worry of numbers or stats, into the YouTube space.

This post was a half-vent/half-job posting, because with all that being said...I am looking for a video editing/graphic design intern for a PAID internship!

If you're a self-starting and motivated video editor and graphic designer, please email me at with your resume and portfolio--hope to work closely with one of you soon!

Missguided top / Glamorous pants / Sol Sana boots

© Feral Creature