I'm not wearing any makeup...




My skin is looking awesome. I have to credit my routine here, for those of you reading along at home, here it is in a handy list form. Yes, it's a lot. But whoa, it's working...

DAILY DEVICES:
Jenu UltraSonic Infuser  | Clinique Sonic Cleansing Brush | Nuface Mini 

DAILY PRODUCTS:
Versa Spa Gradual Tanning Face Moisturizer Kimberly Parry Organics Nourishing Serum
Kiehl's Powerful Strength Line-Reducing Concentrate | Glossier Milky Jelly Cleansermist + moisturizer | Bobbi Brown Extra Balm Rinse (when I wear makeup)

WEEKLY PRODUCTS:
Paula's Choice Resist Weekly Resurfacing Treatment with 10% AHA
Peach & Lily + Caolion Perfect Pores Kit  
Boscia Luminizing Black Mask
Modeling Rubber Mask 

WEARING:
Forever Plaid Shirt  from Seldom Seen | Everlane Bomber Jacket | Bing Bang NYC Rose Gold Baguette Ring (also available atSeldom Seen)  |  Raen Maude Glasses (or here)

How to Prep Your Skin for A Big Event

I definitely did not wake up like this... 



I recently read an article where a famous make-up artist said that for runway shows they often spend 20 minutes "prepping" the skin with serums, lotions and oils... and only a few minutes actually applying make-up. While I'm sure their skill at fast makeup application comes into play here, I definitely see the difference in my make-up application when I adequately prep and especially moisturize my skin,

So when I had a big day recently I decided to focus on this 20-minute prep instead of going crazy on my make-up application. The results were amazing. Not only did my skin look velvety and poreless... but it lasted all day! I was blown away.

Best of all - the next day, when I normally pay the price for caking on my make-up, my skin looked even better than it did the previous day. I am going to coin the phrase "skin dividends". I could also see how this would be awesome for the wedding weekends, when there's a brunch on Sunday and I'm too lazy to go all out again but still want to look impressively effortless.


Selfie taken at 7pm
with only a quick mirrorless touch-up on the nose in between
(hat's 9 hours of running around later
Selfie taken at 10am
right after the video was shot
immediately after makeup application


PRODUCTS:
Glossier Milky Jelly Cleanser
Clinique Sonic Cleansing Brush
T-Relief
Kiehl's Midnight Recovery Eye
Origin's Eye Doctor
Kiehl's Powerful Strength Line-Reducing Concentrate 
Glossier Priming Moisturizer
Korres Rose Oil (in sample bottle I reused)
Jenu UltraSonic Infuser
Georgio Armani Luminous Silk Foundation 
Glossier Mist
Beauty Blender
Glossier Stretch Concealer


Review Everlane Bomber Jacket #Athleisure










Ok, let me just give you the headline - this jacket is freaking amazing. I am obsessed. It goes from workout cover-up to brunch to throw me over a dress so effortlessly I feel like it should just be a dream in my head. It's warm but not too warm. Scrunches into a bag nicely, springs back when you need it. This is the ultimate spring jacket. Also, it's so freaking flattering. Exactly how I like my jackets - narrow through the arms and shoulders but a little boxy and effortless around the torso. The hardware is perfect, a little shiny and special, but not flashy or trendy. I want to buy this in every color (black and navy) and also for them to make it in other colors. At the price point I was expecting something flimsy and decorative like my beloved Zara nude bomber, which is probably going to disintegrate by fall - but no, this is solid, structured, tailored and amazing. If you've been looking for a single piece to immediately make your wardrobe feel like spring, this is it. Size down for a cute fitted look (I'm wearing a small!)

PS I'm not wearing any makeup (peep my secrets here) | Juice sent to me via the new UberEats app by my very thoughtful husband

Forever Plaid Shirt  from Seldom Seen | Everlane Bomber Jacket | Bing Bang NYC Rose Gold Baguette Ring (also available at Seldom Seen)  | Ballet Flats  (according to Man Repeller these are back in style, twice) | Raen Maude Glasses (or here)

Urban Prep: Seldom Seen Boutique in Hayes Valley, San Francisco
















I am not, of my own right, a person with a very clear and particular sense of style. I like to joke that each of my many personalities has it's own style. The truth is I'm more of a mimic or chameleon than someone who adheres to a strict, curated aesthetic vision. It's why I can dress other people - and also why I swerve between some kind of boho/preppy/glam thing on an almost daily basis.

The truth is I dress for myself, as much as myself is the person who feels my best self when I wear "the right thing." I love being twinish with my friends.  (Not the exact same outfit, but something in the same color family/level of fancy.) I love matching. I basically can't leave the house without consulting with at least three people.

Which is why I am so jealous of people with their own distinctive and unwavering aesthetic. Something so true and knowing in themselves that they always manage to evoke a certain self-assuredness that just makes whatever they are wearing exactly the right thing. Natasha Wong is one of those people. She always looks perfect - pretty, effortless, preppy but not saccharine, and cool. Whatever she is wearing is what you wish you were wearing (and not just because she's so beautiful.) She looks comfortable, fully herself but also approachable.

Visiting her Hayes Valley boutique, Seldom Seen, is like taking a trip to a place where you wished you lived. Every item is a treasure - and she can tell you a story about each one, who designed it, how it's produced, why it's special. Every piece in the story works with each other and upon walking in the door you are reminded of nothing so much as a perfect capsule wardrobe. Whimsical touches (like the dopest neon sign in the world!) lots of crisp white and navy. Nestled in the racks is the perfect leather jacket, a creamy t-shirt with polka dots that somehow manages to be a little tomboyish, and also a timeless shoe collection of things that you can tell will never go out of style. This is where you go to invest, to build your forever wardrobe, to find the pieces that your kids will want to steal from your closet, but you wont let them. It's the opposite of fast fashion and I find myself getting sucked in there for at least an hour every time I walk in. The jewelry case alone is like my version of paradise with the sparkliest and most delicate minimalist jewels you've ever lusted after in twinkling, clean lines.

When I got the chance to style Gabi for her upcoming cookbook, I ended up finding two of the key articles of clothing in the store that I built the entire cast looks around. One of them found it's forever home with me (see how I styled it here). It was perfect - the pattern, the silky breathable fabric that seemed to defy all seasons, the perfect tartan that is somehow cool, modern and classic all at once.

The Seldom Seen website has an amazing winter sale going on right now, but not everything in their store is available online. If you're in San Francisco, this neighborhood favorite is a definite destination.


How to Shop for Second-Hand Treasures


Guess how much this lambskin leather jacket was and win a prize. I'll give you a hint: It's by Thasken's Theory and was last seen on Lyst for $1598 




Today my best friend and I wandered into my favorite second-hand store after a long leisurely walk and brunch through the neighborhood (and a super intense workout ahhh!) As soon as we walked in I could sense her ambivalence - it was crowded, loud, overfilled to bursting. After window shopping the carefully curated, color-coded racks of a few luscious high-end boutiques it was the sensory equivalent of going into a mosh pit after a spa weekend.

Knowing her as well as I do, I pulled her towards the back of the store and directed her eyes upward. "Here's what I like to do," I said, steering her towards the racks of shoes in our size, "I start with the shoes, then the jeans, and work my way from the back of the store to the front." Not only does it help to have a plan, it helps to really know what you're doing - especially if you're going shopping on a busy Sunday afternoon.

At the end of our adventure I left with this real, designer, blue leather jacket for $75. She came away with a pair of Miu Miu flats, a Helmut Lang wool short coat that I am seriously jealous about, and pair of gold-studded sandals that fit like they were custom made for her and perfect silk camisole by rory beca that I know cost low 3 figures new. Her total is too low to even print here for the jealousy it would induce. Also, there's no point - because it's not like you can get it! But the thing is, I find deals like this all the time. Seriously.

Vintage is one thing - it implies curating a piece that evokes a different style that's characteristic of a moment in time. Something can be brand, new - just manufactured - and still be "vintagey." Second-hand is something different. Either the article in question is somewhat timeless or classic enough not to bend too deeply to the whims of fashion (think trench coat, riding boots) or it's designer and recent but already been owned and used by someone else. This is where people get the ick. Why must something be brand new to be amazing? Designer clothes cost a fortune. It's not like they get used up - it's not an old tube of toothpaste or a dried out mascara tube. These are gently worn, exorbitantly priced items that just happened to be touched a little by someone else.

Once you upon up yourself to the possibility of previously loved items, things that seem out of reach suddenly become much more accessible. Who knows why these treasures need a new home, but they are yours for the plucking if you know where to find them.

Behold - the master plan. I'm regretting this already... If you find a pair of size 9 camel colored flat riding style boots, I call dibs.

1) Go to where the rich people sell their clothes
Rich people are everywhere, in every town. They sell or donate their old clothes all the time. They are rich, they get new amazing clothes. On our shopping adventure my BFF confessed to me that the outpost of this second hand store in her neighborhood sucked, and that was why she was so ambivalent about mine. She lives in the Mission. I live near Pac Heights.  I live where Sergei & Zuck live. She lives where people throw animal blood at the buses. Who do you think has better cast-aways to shop from?

Pac heights women do. They actually buy the  stuff from that previously referenced curated boutique and when they are ready to sell them they bring them here. Last week I found a pair of amazing Celine sandals with chopped open acrylic heels for $18.  A month before that I found an Acme Denim Jacket that fit like it was tailored for me (in the Men's section) for $20. I have a friend who finds the most incredible, classic timeless stuff at a consignment store in the Hamptons when she goes to visit her family. Online has also become a rich and fertile ground - especially if you are looking for something very specific. I am obsessed with The Real Real,  but have also had great success with Etsy and Ebay. I just got this IRO jacket (in timeless navy) but instead of $581 plus tax, I paid under a hundred (everyone gets a 20% off code for their first use but they always have some kind of deal) Ebay and The Real Real both have authenticity, as-advertised refund policies. At The Real Real they even let you return things! I even found these sunglasses used on Amazon for $40. Who knew?

2) Look at labels
I have a rule that when I go to the thrift store I only buy designers or brands I have heard of (with some very, very limited exceptions.) This is just my way of ensuring quality but it works. If you've heard of something and the experienced buyers have vetted it, you get some assurances of content, quality and style. When it comes to new clothes I think this rule is garbage, but for vintage you want to know that it wont disintegrate like a forever 21 knockoff as soon as you wear it out of the house. Or, if you love that Forever 21 shirt know that it will fall apart and make sure the price tag reflects it. I am especially good at finding designer jeans. Since I know my size in jeans for most brands these days, I can scoop up 2-3 pairs at second-hand stores for $20-30 when they have them. It's so easy to find the section in my size and pluck out the washes I like. It also allows me to try styles (like flares) without a huge upfront investment. Also, nobody can tell those Joe's jeans are from 2009 or whatever. Jeans look like jeans.

3) Either go looking for one very specific thing or go with an open mind 
If you can, wear clothes you can try on while still wearing them. Workout clothes are particularly good for this - shoes that are a pain to get off and on are not. If you can't be the person with your pile in front of the mirror, challenge yourself to try some new things. Don't just try on one piece, pull a bunch of stuff and go to the changing room. Maybe you'll discover something amazing you never thought of before! The thing about stock at second-hand stores is the pieces need to be somewhat timeless to compete with this season's (fill in the blank) so you end up with stuff that isn't so fickle to the tides of trends. You may find a new wardrobe staple for a small fraction of what an investment piece should cost.

4) Don't buy anything you aren't completely obsessed-in-love with
Ever. New or used. Rent is too expensive to turn your closet into storage space. I try to follow the rule that if I don't immediately want to put it on as soon as I walk out the door of the store then it's not coming home with me. None of this - Oh, BUT.... it will look good in 5 pounds, or in another season - maybe. Be opened minded but also cutthroat.

5) Don't get sucked in by deals
Everything is a deal, everything. But it's not a deal if the cost per wear doesn't pan out (yes, I calculate this!) Don't buy something you love that's not in your size - that's just masochism. Don't buy it because it's a designer whatever if you don't love it (the world is full of designers! not everything is for me) and definitely don't buy it if it doesn't make you feel amazing and perfect right now. Also, don't buy it if you can't afford it - no matter how good a deal it is. Clothes are an investment, but so is health insurance and a house.

6) Practice the 3 outfit rule
You can absolutely love and obsess about bikinis, but if you're an eskimo you definitely don't need more than 3.  Just kidding, none. The correct answer is none. There are clothes you lust after that don't actually fit your life. Before I buy anything I list 3 occasions with matching outfits I would wear the item with. If I can't do it (and quickly) it's a pass.

7) Buy the old version of the thing that's trendy now
Pretend you knew it was going to be cool and saved it lovingly from you teenage closet (or your mom's like me.) Or don't. Just make the people who paid a gazillion dollars for designer "homages" to them that they are cool, but you have the original. If the 90s resurgence has taught me anything it is that my mom was right and everything comes back again (half her clothes that I now own are being remade by the Reformation as we speak. Half the clothes I remember wearing in highschool are back - who wants odds on JNCO style wide legs appearing in the next decade?) My beloved clogs were found in a thrift shop. There are certain things (trench coats, leather jackets, clutches, boots) that are even better/cooler because they were someone else's first.


I don't know when we as a society decided that reusing things is not "cool" - I think it rocks. I would rather be Molly Ringwald in Pretty in Pink than her in The Breakfast Club any day. Thrifty is so haute right now. And don't even get me started on the environmental benefits of reusing clothes - instead watch this video...

Happy hunting!

PS If I'm forgetting any major rules - let me know in the comments below!

I tried Tantouring...

I've basically given up on make-up during the week because I'm lazy and also my skin is really being so well-behaved right now (I really hope I don't jinx it!) but I have to admit I am ready for my summer glow. Especially because my face is often several shades lighter than my (also faux-tanned) body, which can last for up to two weeks without fading if I take care of it. All of the things I do to make my skin look good (retinol, pore cleansing rituals) also strip the tan from my face, leaving me pale as a ghost from the decolletage up.

That's why I love gradual tanners that I can use weekly, or nightly - but I kept wondering. Is there something more? Is there a better way? Is the secret... in the application?

Enter "tantouring" - the new semi-permanent way to give your face some sculpt, by using faux tanner to create areas of darkened definition on your face. Terrifying. The things I do for you guys.

I followed the detailed instructions in this slideshow from Refinery 29, but if you don't have patience for slideshows it's pretty simple. Use the buffing brush to apply the gradual tanner to your face and blend, blend, blend. Apply the mousse where you want definition (forehead, nose, cheekbones) using the flat contour brush. Then blend, blend, blend again "blending upward and outward toward your hairline with your flat foundation brush." If it's too dry to blend (which it was) without tugging, add a small blob of moisturizer and keep blending. Wait 2-3 hours before washing off. 

Exactly 3 hours after application, I went out wearing only Stretch Concealer in Dark (on and around nose and under eyes) Generation G in Like, Boy Brow in Brown (all from Glossier), a very thin and hastily applied coat of Bare Minerals Complexion Rescue Tinted Hydrating Gel Cream. Obviously, hella mascara + eyeliner from Benefit.  Also, it's been 8 days since I washed my hair, I'm disgusting - shout out to Ziesche Dry Shampoo.  Please ignore the giant burn mark on my neck from a curling iron, OK. Thanks.  Basically my point is...no blush, bronzer or highlighter. 
Please enjoy this extra closeup picture of my face. 



PRODUCTS:
Buffing Foundation Brush ($13) YES, it's rose gold!!!!!!! 
St. Tropez Tanning Mousse (3 shades darker than your skin)
Glossier Priming Moisturizer (use this link for 20% off your first purchase)


Et Voila - a very natural looking "toned" face. I'll be taking photos the rest of the week reporting on how it holds up.

** yes, the handle falls off in the middle of the video, but for $5 the bristles were soft and it worked fine without it :/



Ziesche Modern Apothecary All-Natural Vegan Vodka Dry Shampoo



I go back and forth with dry shampoo. I read articles that say it's bad for my scalp (you wash your face twice a day - why not your hair?) but I can't deny that not washing my hair everyday is easier, better for the environment, and seems to help me with recurring cases of dandruff. But since I also am trying to clean up my products and make them less "dirty" this also seemed like a great place to try swap out my chemical laden sprays with something more natural. Putting it on my head inevitably means it goes near my face - breathing it in,  and also absorbing it through my skin. Potentially gross, right?

I'm not going to lie, I've had bad experiences with "natural" dry shampoos before. Those chemicals make for a lighter, finer, more magical experience. They ended up looking chalky, sticky or gross in my dark roots. I looked like that time in highschool when I powdered my hair to play a sassy septagenarian. Um, hard pass.


But I was so excited when the amazing local brand  Ziesche Modern Apothecary sent me over some samples.  Their hand lotion, which I kept running into in the wild all over SF,  was light and dreamy. It smelled good but it was also fast absorbing, hydrating, and not sticky. It didn't pill on my skin. They knew what they were doing, so maybe my quest for a natural dry shampoo I actually liked was finally over?

Naturally, their Vodka Dry Shampoo was the first sample I reached for. The packaging made it adorably clear that their small batch, made-with-love products are free of junk, chemicals and parabens. Also, that the company was located right here in my beloved hometown of San Francisco. Their packaging is super cute (something I care deeply about, thank you #ITGTopShelfie) and right away I was digging the absence of a strong, herbal scent that so many natural products boast. No thank you, fake lemon. That's what perfume is for.

I poured a little bit into my hand. The dry shampoo is a powder, which can be especially scary for dark haired-ish girls like me. It feels substantial, not as soft and fine as baby powder, with a more crystalline, almost salty texture. But rubbing the tiniest dab into my hair and brushing it through magically sucked up 8 days of not washing, hairspray use, and five Barry's Bootcamp workouts - leaving my hair looking tousled, beachy and, really really gorgeous. Unlike some formulas I tried in the past, it seemed to suck up the oil but leave behind a really great texture, not deflated or flat. It gave an amazing, boosted volume and seemed to magically refresh my styled waves from the weekend. The next morning it felt soft and clean in it's little bun, with none of the powdery residue that other non-aerosol formulas have left behind on my pillowcase or worse, hair.

I can't wait to dig into all the other samples, soon! I'm already a little bit in love with the charcoal cleanser, which I used for the last few days and seemed to have zapped some smalll workout related bumps on my chin!

I love supporting local, small batch, women led businesses - especially when their products are this effective.


Review: Glossier Phase 2 Makeup is BACK IN STOCK and 20% off




use this link to get 20% off your first purchase! 

I'm obsessed with Glossier - this is no surprise to anyone. I've gushed about their hyaluronic acid moisturizer, I user their mist in every video, I've waxed poetic about their green mask, use their moisturizing mask religiously. I am obsessed with the Milky Jelly cleanser, and use it at least once a day, sometimes after other cleansers (I feel like it helps my skin stay balanced and not overdry after washing and also it smells like candied roses!)

I've repurchased, which in my world is a really big deal since there's always something new and cool and better sounding to try. I can't stay away, I can't get enough!

But to be completely honest, I've never been obsessed with their make-up. Their super sheer tinted balm was nice, but not enough to compete with the endless stream of new and exciting products pouring into my universe everyday. I used one tube and never went back.

The Boy Brow was a pleasant surprise, and I'm a bit obsessed, even though I have to basically mix my own color using both brown and black because I fall somewhere in the middle of the two. The texture is really thickening but somehow magically still natural.

So to say I was skeptical when they started hyping about Phase 2 is a bit of an understatement. I have an obsessive love for so many of their products, but I was struggling with their color line. I was reluctant.

The packaging is, per usual, absolutely spot on perfect - but packaging doesn't go on my face. But for you guys I decided to pull the trigger and make it happen. Plus they have free returns on everything.

So I bought two of the Generation G lip (balms?sticks? hard to say) and the stretch concealer. I am constantly in need of lip balms because I swear I eat them in my sleep I go through them so quickly. I've been using the Coconut Balm Dot Com on my lips but I need color. As I have aged I've noticed that my lips have gotten more pale and a natural looking splash of color does wonders for my complexion. Would generation G deliver?

Generation G: top lip in cake, bottom lip in like


The answer is a resounding YASSS. Maybe followed by Queen. The "cake" is a sexy, muted pinkish nude that looks amazing, like Bridget Bardot post-makeout session. The "like" looks dark and terrifying in the tube but comes out as the sheerest, most perfect blushy true pink. Both looked super natural, barely there (you can see my lip freckle!) but still basically made my whole face look glowy and healthy.

The texture is dry - not drying, it actually left my lips feeling very soft - but felt more like a stain than a balm or lipstick. The texture made me think of crepe, versus satin or silk. What Reformation calls a "dry hand feel".  I like that because moisturizing glosses just slide right off my lips, and typical matte products end up pilling on my lips and kind of gross. Generation G is somewhere between a tinted lip balm and a matte pencil. This had a nice staying power, a sort of matte-light natural finish, and held up really well for the few hours I wore it around the house while snacking constantly.

Get your own Generation G and let me know what you think (especially if you're brave enough to try the dark colors!)




Review: Rubber Modeling Mask


When I read this article in Man Repeller, I knew I had to get my hands on one of these highly touted and cult-obsession worthy "rubber masks." So-called because they turn from a thick gel-paste into a rubber-like sheet that traps the essential nutrients and other skincare goodies, essentially force feeding them into your skin. The supposed results? A dewy, poreless glow that makes a covert out of the biggest skeptics. Once the exclusive purview of high-end Korean spas, these treats are now available for home use.

So I reached out to my homies at Peach & Lily, the ultimate resource for all things K-beauty and importer of the best brands and products that Korea has to offer. They sent me their favorite, the Gold Premium Rubber Modeling Mask, plus the reusable anti-bacterial bowl and spatula set.

You can watch the video of the whole process below - but first, let me gush about the results. My face looked incredible. I can't even describe it. It was soft, bouncy, plump and dewy. My pores were gone - the skin fine and soft as velvet with this translucent radiance that seemed to come from candlelight (it was daytime!) Best of all, the results lasted for days afterwards. I am stocking up on this wonder treatment for special occasions, but it's $20 incredibly well spent. I am a total convert.
Weekends are a special occasion, right?


Ruffled Crop Tops | Beachy Waves








I wish I had an interesting editorial angle for this article. The truth is I was having a great hair day and my arms and shoulders have been looking pretty strong since I stated working out on the reg. I love this top - it brings me so much joy and is, despite being a "crop top" incredibly flattering on my curvy body. My husband hates when I wear it because I'm still a little numb from the mastectomy and one time it slipped down and didn't notice - but he did! And we were the only ones there. He knows better than to hate on my favorite top. This is why someone invented fashion tape.

We had a really fun night - which only makes me love this top more. We ordered platters of incredible BBQ from 4505 meats. Delivered in 20 minutes via Uber Eats.  The apartment still looks amazing post KonMari cleaning, and my beloved prints collection is just really on fleek right now. Our friends came over and we had a blast playing a drinking version of Apples to Apples that I invented. By invented I mean totally ripped off of the game A*&hole which I was obsessed with in my early twenties. FYI I have the best rule the next time I play a drinking game that allows for rules. I will not tell you what it is here but it was amazing.

Then we when to a strange house party with colored lights and amazing EDM music, followed by one of my favorite divey bars. Best of all, I was home and in bed with some Ben & Jerry's fro yo by midnight.

I hope you all had an amazing weekend. I have a really exciting week of content coming up (so many fun products I got my hands on last week!) so check back here often.

Chambray Strapless Crop Top | Nume Curling Iron | Ouai Texturizing Spray & Finishing Creme : Tutorial Video for Beach Waves | G Star High Waist Jeans (thrifted) | Alexander McQueen Sunglasses via Nordstrom Rack (try these)

Rose Gold Hair










(aka my Mama)


If you love something as much as I love rose gold, then why not make your hair that color? The answer is THERE IS NO REASON. DO IT! #TGIF love, Dena

Rose Gold Necklace



Customized Rose Gold Bar Necklace $27 | Super Soft Halter Neck Swing Dress $21 | Ray Bans $100

Frayed Jeans: The Easiest DIY for Spring






I am clearly obsessed with looking cool. If you read this blog regularly you may be sick of hearing about it by now. I have never been the kind of person who can set trends, but I've always been good at spotting ones that have legs. I'm an early adapter, not an inventor. But my proximity to these concepts put me in a place of being relatively able to mimic being a trendsetter... And so, I would like to get on my soapbox and express my love for the latest trend in denim.

Skinny jeans, the jeans of my people are getting some flack in the fashion scene. They've gone from rare to prolific and so, as with all things in fashion, they want something new. Flares, short flares, wide legs, joggers - anything to stand out in a sea of skinny gams. Here's the problem; fashion no longer confines itself to dictating what people wear. We've been told to be ourselves by the magazines for too long, we listen. We don't need to follow trends. So while some of us who bend more to the will of fashion are bemoaning our skinny jeans, we are likewise reluctant to give up something that we love. Something that flatters us. Something we have locked down in our respective style arsenal.

So what's a girl to do? I've worked some flares into my wardrobe. I like them enough, but they require more heel then I generally like to put into my ensembles. I want something that will make my beloved skinnies feel fresh, feel cool  and different, but still keep me in my skinny shinned wheelhouse.

Enter the frayed denim.

I started to see it popping up everywhere - blogs, even this month's Instyle magazine.

I'm currently working on the idea that if you see a lot of cool people do something, then it might be a cool thing. It only works if you like the way the aforementioned thing looks - in this case I do - and also if you can dip your toe into the look without a large investment, ie time/money/labor.

And so, it was with those founding principles in mind that I realized I was coveting the look of ripped bottom jeans. What better way to display the crossed up the ankle shoes/sneakers I love? Or just show a little bit of one of my favorite features aka my ankles? Let in a little bit of a breeze - that feels very spring.

I was sold.

So I set out to get my own pair of frayed jeans. You can find them pre-made but that seemed weird and kind of wasteful. I could do it myself.  It can't possibly be that hard right? Right. It's most definitely not.

 But after carefully editing my jean collection down during my KonMari, I was fearful of taking the scissors to one of the survivors of the great purge of 2016. So I went to my favorite thrift store - Crossroads on Fillmore. Here's a pro tip, if you want designer jeans for $20 go to the thrift store in the ritzy neighborhood. Who knows why these gems end up in the throw away pile, but such is their life cycle that they can then find a glorious home with me.

So I found these Joe's Jeans - a  brand  I have always loved in wash, pockets and booty shaping except I don't like the wider leg opening at the bottom. Perfect for chopping!

Then I hit the internet again, with a targeted search in mind. After a flurry of pinning images that I loved, I spent some time just looking at my collection.  What had I liked about them? (uneven, boxy high-low hem, and lots of fray being the top contenders...) I also found a best of list that served as my mood board as I picked at the hems.

I will spare you the tutorial in great detail, but should you require one here's a great one from Refinery29: Frayed Jeans How-To

Here's my abbreviated version.
Measure twice. Mark. Measure again. Cut. Watch TV while pulling threads out with tweezers/thin pen until you get desired level of fringe.

Victory!


Do I look cool?




Seen here with this season's "it" jacket and shoes,  aka the bomber jacket and espadrilles. 
Bomber Jackets Under $100: Everlane |  Forever 21 | Urban Outfitters
Lace Up Espadrilles: Perforated Black |  Splendid Edna Flat (shown here)

PS my skin is looking pretty great huh - here's my secrets: High-Tech Beauty | Perfect Pores Kit | Faux Tanner 



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