Passion Planner 2018 – Get Organized!

Happy New Year!  To kick off my blog posts for the year, I wanted to start by sharing my Passion Planner.  I know this is much different from what I usually post, but hear me out!  When I get unorganized and busy, my my beauty routine always gets pushed aside.  I always look and feel my best if the rest of my life is together! Organization is key.

I have a paper planner every year; I really enjoy writing things down so I refuse to have everything in my phone or in computer calendar. This year’s Passion Planner is the first one I have had, and I am absolutely loving it.


Miguel helped me film my YouTube video intro, check out the full video for a more in-depth tour of my planner!


The Passion Planner has instructions to help get your goals down on paper, and tips to break them down into measurable, tangible goals.


Here is a month view in the planner.  I used washi tape to decorate, and to block off my workouts to help me keep track of my schedule.  I also used washi tape to cover the edge of the page for each month to make the pages easier to find.


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Headband Day #headbandsofhope


Hi everyone!  Today is a very special day – Headband Day 2017!

For every new Instagram follower today, Headbands of Hope will donate a headband to a child with cancer.  What are you waiting for?!  Follow Headbands of Hope by clicking here.

In her words, Jessica Ekstrom- CEO & Founder explains,

“I founded Headbands of Hope, a brand that donates a headband to a child with cancer for every piece sold. The company believes that a simple accessory can improve a child’s confidence, bringing out both inner and outer beauty. To date, Headbands of Hope has donated nearly 100,000 headbands to cancer patients in children’s hospitals and childhood cancer organizations across the country, reaching every single hospital in America”.

What a beautiful mission!  Check their site out here.

Stay tuned, as a Headband Hero I will be sharing a promo code for $5 off the purchase of a headband.  In the photo, I am wearing the Embree Knotted ❤




Day to Night Styling

Hey, everyone!  Today’s post will touch on how to use accessories to take a dress from day to night.  The dress I’m wearing is the Ruched Body-Con Tank Dress from Leith.  I was looking for a dress for a specific event that I could dress up or down, and my beautiful friend Christina told me about this one *love you, Chrissy!*.

When looking for a dress you can take from day to night with a few accessory changes, I usually look for one that is a bit on the simple side.   Choosing the right jacket, jewelry, and shoes is what takes your look from casual to glam and back again.  For day, I have worn this dress with a denim jacket or vest, fun/bright necklace, and sandals or my white Chuck Taylors.  For night, I pair it with a statement necklace, XOXO jacket/blazer (purchased last year, here it is if you’re curious), and heels!

If you’re looking for statement jewelry, I have lots of luck at Francesca’s, Nordstrom Rack, and Target.


1504205587234Another example:



Again, same dress, just using different accessories for a completely different look!  Have fun; experiment and see what you like best.

Thanks so much for reading!  Keep up with me by subscribing to my blog, and follow me on Instagram and Facebook.






Holy Grail Beauty – Updated

#hellosexy Glamglow Supermud Clearing Treatment


This is hands down the best mask I’ve ever tried (and I’ve tried a LOT)!  My skin can be pretty temperamental, but this skin treatment is everything!  Literally after one use, I see an improvement in my skin.  I would highly recommend this to anyone who fights breakouts.  The full product is quite pricey, but this #hellosexy pack of single-use kits is a great way to check it out.

Moisturizer: Murad Oil-Control Mattifier SPF 15 PA++

I need a moisturizer that will keep me matte throughout the day, and this moisturizer does just that!

Foundation:  L’Oréal TRUE MATCH™ Super Blendable Makeup


No matter how many high-end foundations I keep trying, I always come back to True Match!  It really does blend beautifully, and their wide range of shades means you can find a perfect match for your skin like I did.

Brows: NYX Micro Brow Pencil and Benefit Gimme Brow Volumizing Fiber Gel


These two products do a great job at filling in my brows!  I typically use the pencil first, brushing through my brows to make it as natural-looking as possible.  Next I use the brow gel to pump up my brows (they’re pretty sparse); this product combo is just perfect!  It looks very natural and stays all day, even through workouts.

Eyeshadow Primer: Benefit Stay Don’t Strayshadowprimer

Using shadow primer is a total game-changer!  Not only does it make shadows last longer, on days when I put on minimal makeup for work, it is perfect for giving my lids a wash of color and making me look fresh and awake.  Most days I’ll swipe this on and define my crease with a bit of bronzer, and I’m good to go!

Eyeshadow: Urban Decay Naked Eyeshadow Palette and Maybelline The Blushed Nudes Eyeshadow Palette


The Naked eyeshadow palette is worth all of the hype.  ALL OF IT!  It has neutral shadows in different finishes (matte, shimmer, satin, sparkle), and it is really all you need.  You can create endless day and night looks, including the most gorgeous smokey eye looks.  The shadows are highly pigmented and stay put for hours and hours.  The Blushed Nudes palette from Maybelline is a really great (and much more affordable) option if you aren’t looking to splurge.

Liner: Kat Von D Tattoo Liner


Hands-down my favorite liquid liner.  The brush tip lets you make a really precise line. Even for someone who isn’t a winged liner pro yet, you will look super fab with this stuff.  Let me tell you: it. does. not. budge.  In my younger years I’d use this, go out and dance until the club closed, sleep in my makeup (I know, SO BAD), and I’d wake up to perfect liner!!!  A-ma-zing.

Lash Curler: Sephora Collection Show Curl XL Lash Curler


This curler is a bit wider than most, and it gives me the perfect curl every time!  My eyes are a bit hooded, and this really opens them up.  I usually hit the eyelash curler with my hairdryer for just a few seconds before curling my lashes; it will give you a curl that lasts all day.  Just be careful you don’t get it too hot- you literally only need to have the air on it for 3 or 4 seconds.

Mascara: Jordana Best Last Extreme Volumizing Mascara and Cover Girl Clump Crusher


I’ve tried everything from $1 mascara to $40 mascara, and I’d have to say that these two are my favorite!  Both are very affordable (Jordana is under $4 at Walgreens, CoverGirl $7.99 at Ulta).  The Jordana mascara gives amazing seperation and length without clumping or flaking.  The CoverGirl mascara also defines and lengthens lashes, providing a very natural look – my everyday choice.

Lashes: Ardell Natural Demi Wispies


These are perfect if you want to go for a “are they fake or not?” look.  Really pretty and natural-looking, not too heavy!  I don’t wear falsies too often, but these are my go-to.

Nails: Seche Vite Dry Fast Top Coat

The BEST!  I typically do my nails at home, I’m not especially good at it but my friends always ask where I got them done; that’s how good this stuff is.  It dries really quick and gives your nails a beautiful shine.

Juicy Couture – Viva La Juicy


Love, love, love this perfume.  Don’t ask questions.  Just smell it next time you go to the perfume counter, you’re welcome.

Shaving: Kiss My Face Moisture Shave and Gillette Fusion ProGlide Manual Razor


If you’re wondering why I included what I use to shave in this post, it’s because this is the one thing I will not experiment with anymore.  After much trial and error, this shave lotion and razor is the only combination that works, and works really well at that.  Everything else I use gives me awful razor burn.  If you have trouble with shaving, give this a try!

Let me know what you think of these beauty products – and if I left your favorite off the list.

xoxo, Katie

4 Tricks to Make Your Eyes Look Bigger

Curl lashes
Step 1: Curl lashes

1. Curl your lashes!

  • Curling your lashes instantly opens your eyes, making them appear larger.  You can also hit your curling iron with hot air from your hair dryer for a few seconds before using, to really get curl that lasts.


Step 2: Tightline Upper Lash Line and Apply Mascara

2. Tightline and apply mascara

  • Tightline your upper lash line using a black eyeliner.  This step defines your eyes, and makes your lashes appear fuller.
  • Add a few coats of your favorite mascara.  I’ve been loving Covergirl Clump Crusher


Nude liner
Step 3: Apply Nude Eyeliner to Lower Waterline

3. Line lower waterline with nude eyeliner

  • For some makeup looks, you line the lower waterline with black pencil.  This can be beautiful when you’re going for a really smokey look!  For smaller eyes (like mine), this doesn’t give me a wide-eye look at all.  Instead, line your waterline with a nude pencil to really open them up and appear larger.  I used a nude Makeup forever Aqua XL Eye Pencil Waterproof Eyeliner,  I’ve also used NYX Wonder Pencil.


Step 4: Highlight Brow Bone and Inner Corner of Eye

4. Highlight!

  • Adding highlight to your brow bone and the inner corner of your eye is one last trick to open your eyes and make them appear larger!  These steps together all take about 5 minutes!

For a simple, fast eye makeup routine – I’ll do these easy steps and also prime my lids and add a sweep of bronzer in my crease for definition.

Hope these tips helped!  Let me know in the comments what you think, or if you have any eye makeup tricks you swear by ❤


Wardrobe Essential: Little Black Dress

Every girl needs a Little Black Dress (LBD) in her closet.  I love them because they are timeless, and can be easily dressed up or down.  You can wear a LBD to many different events such as date night, interviews, and holiday parties.  You don’t have to break the bank, either!  I have found LBDs for well under $20 at both T.J. Maxx and the clearance rack at Banana Republic.

There’s a LBD for every occasion and to flatter every body shape!

Please let me know if you have questions about anything I’m wearing. Thank you so much for reading! Be sure to follow me or subscribe via email for upcoming fashion posts.  You can check out my Fall Lookbook here, cooler weather is just around the corner ❤

xoxo, Katie

P.S. If you missed it, this is the same dress: daytonight

My next fashion post will show how I accessorize to take an outfit (like a LBD) from day to night.   See you all soon!



Smokey Eye Look Using One Shadow! -Updated With Video

My favorite smokey eye look. This is really simple to do, it actually only uses one eye shadow!  This one-shadow look is great for hooded eyes like mine; I don’t have much lid space for too many shadows at once.  I used the Maybelline Eye Studio 24 hr Color Tattoo Eyeshadow in the shade Bad to the Bronze.  (The metallic look of this shadow allows it to look like you have on more than one once you blend it out).  I have several of these Color Tattoo shadows because they are so easy to use.  In this image, Bad to the Bronze is the bottom shade.

Here is my fast, easy (5 steps), beautiful smokey eye look!

Step 1: Prime Lids




You can use any primer you’d like, my favorite is the Benefit Stay Don’t Stray in the shade light/medium.  You don’t have to use primer, but it definitely makes a difference in how long your eyeshadow stays put!  There are many options for eyeshadow primer as far as price; and now just about every brand makes their own.




Step 2: Tightline Upper Lid/Apply Eyeshadow

Use your favorite khol pencil or eyeliner to tightline your upper eyelid.  To do this, gently lift your eyelid up so you can see where your lashes meet your eyelid and apply the eyeliner there.  If you’re still unsure about this, do a quick Google search 🙂 This makes lashes appear thicker, and it does not take away eyelid space (great for hooded eyes)!  You can line your lower lash line if you’d like, but personally I skip that step since it makes my eyes look smaller.  Next, use your finger to apply eyeshadow to your eyelid to just above your crease.  You can pat the eyeshadow on your lid to make it more pigmented, and drag it up slightly from there.  This part can be pretty messy since it is going to get blended out!


Step 3: Blend, Blend, Blend…Then Blend Some More


Use a blending brush to blend out the line at your crease, up and out.  Blending is very important for this look, especially if you don’t want any harsh lines.  The idea is to get the eyeshadow to fade out.  Blend, blend, blend!  Put your brush in the outer corner of your eyelid crease like it is here, and use windshield-wiper motions to go along your crease and soften the edge of the shadow.   For hooded eyes like mine: blend with your eye open!  This way you can see the part of your lid you will actually still see with your eye open, and you can blend the shadow up past that point.

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Holiday Hair


Happy December, everyone!   Welcome back ❤

I am so happy December is here!  To start off this month of blog posts, I have an easy, loose-curl holiday hairstyle that will be perfect for parties or weddings. There are always so many events to attend this time of year, I’m always on the lookout for new hairstyles.

You Will Need:

  • Curling Iron – I use a 1 1/4 inch Hot Tools Curling Iron
  • Clip (to section hair)
  • Brush/Paddle Brush – My favorite is the Denman Large Paddle Brush
  • Texturizing Spray –  L’Oréal Professionnel Tecni Art Wild Stylers Next Day Hair Dry Finishing Spray
  • Heat Protectant – Chi 44 Iron Guard Thermal Protection Spray
  • Bobby Pins
  • Hair Ribbon or Headband

Step 1: Section Hair



Step 2: Apply Heat Guard, Take Small Sections of Hair, and Curl Them Away From Your Face


Step 3: Spray With Flexible Hold Hairspray – DO NOT brush/disrupt the curls yet!


Step 4a: Do NOT Inhale Hairspray.  Tastes Awful.


Step 5: Take Down Another Section of Hair


Next, repeat Steps 2&3: Spray the new section of hair with heat guard, curl small sections away from your face, spray curls with hairspray.  Once that section is done, take down the next section and repeat the process until all hair is curled.


*If You Want to Keep Length: Gently Tug Down On Curls While Still Hot*


Step 6: Once All Hair is Curled:

  • Wait Until Curls Are Completely Cool

  • Brush Out Hair


Step 7: Style/Add Texture


I lift sections of hair and spray the texture spray to break the curls up a bit/give some definition.

That’s it!  Pretty, relaxed curls! From here, you can style your hair however you’d like.

You can tuck hair behind your ear, or pin up one or both sides!


I’m Going Through a Ribbon-Bow Phase

I got this black ribbon off a shopping bag (Banana Republic, maybe?!).  Any headband would work just fine for this, as well.

Throw on a fun party dress, some lipstick, and add some accessories!   Ready to go!


Thank you so much for reading, let me know what you think about this look! Be sure to check out the video for more in-depth instruction.





How to Grow Out a Pixie Cut

Have you always wanted to cut your hair, but been terrified of the growing-out process?  A few years ago I committed and I had my hair cut really short, and then my hairstylist disappeared on me.  I didn’t know what to do…through some trial and error, I figured it out!

I was always nervous and unsure about growing out a pixie cut, but I have done it a few times and figured out the easiest way to do it.  It really isn’t bad at all if you have a plan as you go, and the very best thing is all the cute haircuts you get to have along the way!  I became much better at styling my hair as I went through the process of growing it out.

Here are my go-to styles to get you from pixie cuts, to bobs, to lobs (long bobs)!  Before you know it, your hair will be past your shoulders and you will be itching for a short cut again.

The big chop:



I really loved that haircut!  It was so easy!  Plus, when you hair is short you can really play around with color.  There is something so freeing about not having to worry about your hair.  My best friend (heeeeey, Katie!) 100% hated my hair when I first got it cut #funfact.  As in, all the way hated it.  LOL.  It is a super drastic change, and it might take a little bit of time for your close friends/family to get used to it.  Stay confident!  You love your hair, and everyone else will learn to love it just as much.

It might take a while for you to figure out the best way to style your hair, depending on your cut and hair texture.  I actually used to have to wear a scarf while my hair was drying when my hair was its shortest, because otherwise my naturally wavy/curly hair dried really poofy. Sounds a bit silly, but if I didn’t, I ended up with Golden Girls hair. Not so adorable when you’re young.

If you are really not able to coax your hair into anything you like, throw a hat on!

Aviary Photo_131244341592309455.png

Ta da!  Now, when it comes to starting to grow out your hair, you need to make a decision.  You can either grow the top out first, and then the sides/bottom, or you can grow it out all at once and get trims to shape it.

In my experience, it is the easiest (and you get the most options) when you grow out the top first and then once it is long enough, let the sides and bottom grow out, too.  I tried the “grow it all out at once” method one time and ended up with a mullet that had to go.

From the shortest pixie length, the next step is to let the top grow out a bit, but still keep the sides and back short.


For this style, I would use a tiny flat iron to curl my hair on top up and back from my face, then run a pomade through it for texture!



Here, you do the same thing.  As the top gets longer, keep the sides and back short.  I used a small flat iron or curling iron to style the hair on top.   As the hair on the sides/back gets a little bit longer, you can also use a small curling iron to curl those pieces to give your hair some texture.

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Type of Beautiful Spotlight: Jessica

Describe Your Type of Beautiful:

1. What type of beautiful would you say you are_  (no wrong answer….jpeg

I honestly don’t think there is a ‘type’ of beautiful. I think that is a flaw in American culture. The idea that we think we need to have types… or standards on what beautiful is or what it should be, doesn’t make any sense to me. If you just do you, whoever you is… that in itself is beautiful. Being your authentic self, that is beautiful.

Who are your fashion inspirations?


Most of my wardrobe is thrifted or vintage. I am more of a genres/decades broad. I like to mix and match decades and genres. I tend to match eclectic funk.. paired with some 60s/70s flair… when I feel like it… 80s flair… when I feel like… or 90s… lol, you get the drift.  But I would say these three amazing queens. 

  1. Erykah Badu.  She does whatever the F** she wants… and I love it. 
  2. India Arie.  Print game and head scarf game is always on point and elegant! 
  3. Andra Day.  Andra has this retro eclectic chic look that I love.


What is your go-to outfit?


To contrary belief, I’d rather be in comfortable clothes. So a plaid shirt or a t-shirt, leggings or a skinny jean, and a boot (flat or lace up) or a tennis shoe. 

What fall trend or style are you most excited about?

Fall trends!!! Too many! Scarves. Freaking scarves. Not winter scarves, but scarves I can wear on my head or around my neck. My scarves double… hell triple for many things in my wardrobe.


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