Things I did while I was gone

  • Dyed my hair a red ombré/balayage

Instagram red hair

Picture is from my Instagram, taken by my stylist, Mel. I LOVE HIM. He’s amazing and I’m so proud of him for opening his own salon!! Check out his work on his Instagram.

This is the first time in over a decade that I’ve done such serious coloring on my hair. I previously had a peekaboo red at the nape of my neck, but as it started to grow out, I wanted to go for a full-on red ombré. I love how it turned out!

  • Bought a pair of boots on impulse

donald j pliner diem boots

These are Donald J Pliner “Diem,” and I found them on clearance at Nordstrom Rack. They’re a half size too big, but it was the last pair. I wore them out with thick socks, and I think with an insert it’ll be fine.

  • Bought a curling iron

toni & guy curling iron

I’ve never used a curling iron before. I already own two curling wands (the ones without a clamp). However, since I cut my hair short (ish), it’s hard for me to curl the bottom layers without getting dangerously close to giving myself a burn hickey. So I wanted to try a clamp style iron.

There was quite a learning curve with this! The first time I tried it, I completely screwed it up and my hair looked awful. I had to put it up in a bun while I went to work, and when I got home, I rinsed the style out. I looked up a few tutorials on good ol’ YouTube and tried again.

It came out way better the second time around, but I still very much prefer the wand. It’s way easier to maneuver and it’s pretty much idiot proof. Just wrap your hair around the barrel, hold for a few seconds, and let it go.

curled with iron and wand

Here, I curled it with the iron and it was mostly okay. I went back in with my tapered wand to smooth out some wonky bits, and give some curls more definition.

curling wand vs curling iron

Top: My old faithful, ISO Beauty tapered barrel curling wand.

Bottom: New kid on the block, Toni & Guy 1″ curling iron. I WILL master you, damnit!!

  • Got attacked by bugs.

The building I live in is pretty tall (40 stories), and pretty old (30+ years). This summer, they’re doing a massive resurfacing project for all the lanais (balconies), and they’ve removed our screen door. Now, all kinds of lovely bugs are flying right in our apartment, including a giant roach (it semi-attacked my sister in the bathroom and now we’re both suffering from mild anxiety that another one is lurking about).

But mainly, my sister and I were being eaten alive by mosquitoes. We’d wake up in the morning with 2-3 new bites each day. It’s just awful. I’ve tried spraying a lavender sleep mist around our sleeping area, but it wasn’t working.

One night, while unable to sleep because I couldn’t stop scratching three new bites on my legs, I got fed up and looked up solutions on Amazon. I settled on this essential oil blend by Plant Therapy called “Insect Shield.” It’s a mix of citronella, eucalyptus, cedarwood, lemongrass, lavender, may chang, tea tree, patchouli, and catnip. Basically, all the things that bugs supposedly hate.

plant therapy insect shield essential oil

I followed this recipe found on Wellness Mama for a homemade bug spray, and I used about 15 drops of this, and 5 drops of lavender. I didn’t have distilled water, so I just used boiled water. First impression: it smells really nice!

We’ve used it for two nights, and so far, no new bites. I hesitate to call it a success just yet, because it might be a fluke. But I’m hopeful. I also bought this little pod essential oil diffuser, and when it comes in, I’ll try it overnight as well. Cross your fingers for me!

  • Wore purple blush.

detrivore cosmetics blush endearment

I picked this little sample baggie of blush the last time I made an order from Shiro Cosmetics. I also bought a sample of the blue blush, Bluebeard, but I haven’t tried that one yet. I figured I could make purple work more easily than blue, ha.

Endearment is described as a matte greyed lavender.

fotd detrivore blush endearment

Like most loose powders, it’s messy to work with, especially out of a little plastic baggie. However, it’s surprisingly VERY flattering. I have a bit of natural redness in my cheeks, so it turned it a bit pinky. I was only wearing powder foundation in this picture. I want to try it again with a more full coverage foundation, to see if it’ll be more “greyed lavender.”

I’d be tempted to pick up a full sized jar, if my blush collection hadn’t already reached critical mass.

And there you have it. Shenanigans that I’ve been up to/got into/I actually don’t know how to use this phrase correctly – while I wasn’t here. Anything new to report on your end of the keyboard?

New Year’s Eve: To the Nines

New Year’s Eve parties are a pretty big deal. We put on something fun and sparkly and get all gussied up to drink champagne and kiss someone sexy at midnight. It’s tradition.

I managed to put together a New Year’s Eve look for this hypothetical party I’m going to!

fotd nye

Truth be told, I’ve been wearing this makeup look to work a lot lately. Red lips and glitter is a classic holiday season go-to, don’t you think?

ootd nye

ootd nye shoes

ootd nye accessories

I actually wore this exact outfit last week, when my family and I went to a fine dining restaurant for my mom’s birthday. I bought the heels last minute at Ross, on clearance. $15.99, score! They are crazy uncomfortable, though. But I rarely wear heels and I didn’t want to spend more than $20 on a pair I’d probably wear once a year. So I’m quite happy with this find.

One day, I’ll figure out a way to take decent pictures of me actually wearing these outfits. I don’t get very good natural light in my apartment, and I’m too shy to go outside and take selfies. :S


Dress – ecoté
Shoes – Steve Madden Shiri
Necklace – Express
Earrings – Claire’s?? I can’t remember, I got these ages ago, and I wear them every winter.
Watch – Fossil
Clutch/makeup bag – Jouer


e.l.f. cream eyeliner in black
The Body Shop glitter eyeliner
The Body Shop Colour Crush lipstick in 115 Enraptured Red
Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blush in Luminous Flush
butter LONDON The 444

And here’s the part where I reveal that this whole post is a farce.

I don’t have any plans for New Year’s Eve. At least, no fancy plans. I work from 10am to 2pm, then I’ll probably come home and immediately change into my sleep/lounge clothes. Maybe my family and I will watch the fireworks at Aloha Tower. I might even go to a beer tasting with my sister. But I definitely will not be this dressed up. Le sigh.

Even my dog knows that I have no social life:

ootd nye pocky

“Umm, what the hell are you doing? This is pathetic, you know that?”

ootd nye pocky 2

“You and I both know that you’re not going anywhere that requires a dress this pretty, so if you’re not going to use it as a mat, then I will. Thanks.”

What are your plans for New Year’s Eve? Whatever they are, have fun and stay safe! See you in 2015. :)

Outfit: I heart dog

i heart dog ootd

Old Navy denim chambray shirt
I heart dog tank – I bought it somewhere in Camden, London.
Red shorts – The tag says American Style Iris Jeans, but I can’t find any information about the brand online. I bought it at Ross.
Coach Bleecker Mini Riley carryall
Steve Madden Jazie oxford

i heart dog fotd

Hourglass Ambient Lighting palette
Pacifica BB Cream
Tarte LipSurgence Natural Matte Lip Tint in Exposed
Korres Cheek Butter in Philia Rose
Sephora Jumbo Liner 12HR Wear in Taupe
Urban Decay 24/7 eyeliner in Corrupt
Tarte Lights, Camera, Lashes mascara

This is what I wore out that Saturday night when I stayed out much too late and woke up the next morning feeling old and achy. Every time I have more than two beers a night, my body reminds me the next day that I’m not 21 anymore.

I love this “I heart dog” tank so much. I actually bought it for my sister, but since I kept commenting on how much I loved it and how cute it was, she told me to just keep it. Haha!

I bought the Coach bag soon after I bought the Saffiano satchel in my last outfit post. It was a lot of money to drop in a short amount of time, but it’s a beautiful bag and perfectly my style. The Coach outlet in Waikele was having a 50% off sale. So it jumped into my arms and I handed over a credit card, and it came home with me. No regrets.

The Steve Madden oxfords were a rediscovery. When I first got them, they were a little uncomfortable so I didn’t wear them much. They’re of leather suede construction, so I guess they softened up during their neglect? I was going through my closet recently to clear out clothes and shoes to sell and/or donate, and I put these on. They’re much more comfortable now and I decided to keep them. I love that the soles are blue.

Outfit: Keepin’ it classy

Now that I’ve finally finished that makeup series, it’s time to shake things up a little! I was reading through my blog and I honestly found it boring. All I’ve posted about so far is flash sales and my monthly empties. Snooze fest.

So, I’m going to venture into style posts! I’m still trying to figure out a way to take pictures of my outfits. I’m too self-conscious to venture outside and ask someone (my sister) to take pictures of me. I’ve done it a few times, and I always felt like a doofus. So for today’s outfit, I took a page out of The Pink Diary (see what I did there?) and lay my clothes out on the floor.

If you don’t already follow The Pink Diary, I highly, highly recommend it. I wish I could live in her Instagram feed: each shot is impeccably styled, whether it’s her outfit of the day, her current makeup, what’s on her desk, or other lovely, pretty things. Le siiigh.

keepin' it classy ootd

Everlane v-neck tshirt (personal invite link to Everlane)
Coach sunglasses
Coach Saffiano leather mini satchel
Paige Denim shorts
Cole Haan Jenni buckle flats
Marc Jacobs leather pouch

keepin' it classy fotd

Tarte Lights, Camera, Lashes mascara
Urban Decay 24/7 eyeliner in Corrupt
Korres cheek butter in Eros Coral
Pacifica BB cream
The Body Shop Colour Crush Shine lipstick in 18

Obviously, my life isn’t nearly as fancy nor pretty. I don’t consider myself to be particularly adventurous when it comes to clothes, nor especially stylish. I’d like to be, one day. I actually only started paying attention to what I wore after I finished college. Like many of us, I’m still slowly figuring out my personal style.

Nowadays, I rarely leave my apartment unless it’s for work. Since I have to adhere to a dress code (all black, it’s very boring), I’ve found myself in a bit of a style standstill. When I have a day off and my plans include venturing outside and socializing with other humans, I’m almost paralyzed by the amount of clothing options I have. I don’t even have that much clothes! But I’ve been cycling through the same six pieces for work for so long, that when I suddenly have the freedom to wear whatever the hell I want, I get a little confused.

However, with Tropical Storm Wali causing “an uptick in humidity” I didn’t want to get too fancy with my clothes lest I melt into a steaming puddle on the sidewalk. It’s been so fucking uncomfortable these past few days. The mere thought of putting on clothes is a special kind of torture. I want to go live in my refrigerator.