How Does Your Beauty Routine Change With the Seasons?

Chilly, originally uploaded to Flickr by CrowcombeAl.I’ve been unpacking some of my fall/winter clothes as the days get chillier, and I thought it might be interesting to talk about how our beauty routines change with the seasons, too.  For me, it’s a few things:

  • I give up on airdrying my hair, and as I use the blow dryer more I’m switching my hair products back to the “keep my hair straight and frizz free” side of the bathroom cabinet (such as this) and putting away my “enhance my curls” side of things.  (We’ll see how that goes this winter.  If, unlike me, you’d like to rock your curls all winter, check out this post on how to do be curly when it gets colder.)
  • I stop using bronzer (because it’s ok to be pale)!
  • I start using a more moisturizing face wash (I like St. Ives Olive Scrub, which I discovered while pregnant)

How about you guys? What changes about your beauty routine when the seasons change?

(Pictured: Chilly, originally uploaded to Flickr by CrowcombeAl.)

The Hunt: T-Strap Pumps

Sure, we all know what basics professional women are supposed to have in their closets, but if you’re buying one for the first time or replacing one you’ve worn into the ground, it can be a pain to find exactly the right incarnation in stores. In “The Hunt,” we search the stores for a basic item that every woman should have.

I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again — pumps are great, but for days where I’ll actually be walking/standing/running around, I always prefer shoes with straps. T-straps are classic, ladylike, and often super comfortable even if they’re not pitched as “comfort shoes.” In walking cities like NYC, they’re often great for the rainy fall day because they stay on your feet while hopping around puddles and running from sudden showers.   I’ve rounded up my favorites below (in both a slideshow and a chart, oo la la) — readers, have you bought any great T-strap pumps lately?  [Read more...]

Staying Warm in the Subzero Office

Snow(business)man, originally uploaded to Flickr by oxygen timebomb.If your office is freezing, it doesn’t matter how hot it is outside — you want to bundle up and stay as warm as possible. Perhaps there’s a better way than having an office Snuggie, as some of Reader N’s coworkers seem to have done:

Despite record breaking temperatures this summer, I find myself huddled in my “office sweater” most of the day. (You know, the one you keep in a drawer in case your nice business casual outfit can’t keep you warm.) While some of my co-workers have long resorted to bringing in  fleece blankets to huddle in, I would like to avoid this ‘burrito-chic’ fashion.  I’m already wearing winter-weight pants with seasonally appropriate tops, but most of the time I resort back to the tired but appropriate Old Navy sweater. That is, until I found a strange alternative.  My question for you is it so strange I should actually just stick to my sweater…

The piece in question is a blazer made of thick hoodie material. It’s fitted/tailored  just right for me as a blazer, but it has a zipper where the front buttons should be. I feel kind of funny wearing such an odd thing, but it does make me feel like I’m more business-casual than business-burrito.

I’m with you — it always felt like my office was the South Pole in the summertime.  And trust me, nothing makes you feel more glamorous than settling in for a long day of doc review wearing a hat and gloves (although, hey, those are options).  We’ve talked about how to stay warm in the office in the fall and winter, but the summer office can be a bit more difficult because there’s such a stark contrast between your inside and outside dress. (Pictured: Snow(business)man, originally uploaded to Flickr by oxygen timebomb.) Here are some more professional suggestions… [Read more...]

What to Wear to a Company Picnic

What do you wear to attend a company picnic and watch a baseball game — particularly when this will be one of the first impressions you make? Reader E wonders…

I finally have a unique fashion dilemma that I need help on. After working as a government attorney for several years, I have landed a job at a biglaw firm starting in the fall. I have been invited this summer to the firm’s trip to watch a baseball game and the picnic beforehand. It’s a family event to which SO’s and children are invited, and it’s on a Friday right after work. My dilemma–what to wear?? This will be the first time I meet many of the attorneys and support staff, so of course I want to make a good impression. Are jeans appropriate? Khakis? Do I need to wear team colors/jersey? Ack! (Also, I wouldn’t mind any tips on socializing at this type of event–I’ve never been to one and my SO can’t attend, so I’m really nervous about showing up alone and meeting people for the first time!) Thanks for any advice you have on this!

Ugh. I know firms think these things are fun, but the sartorial conundrum never is. Honestly, I would suggest calling the Hiring Department and asking them what people have worn to the event in the past. (In general, ladies, this is ALWAYS the right answer — call the HR department.) If they give you a vague answer (“oh, you know, pants or a dress”), I would ask what the men wear — if they’re still in suits from a day at the office (perhaps sans tie, or with shirt sleeves rolled up), I’d go for something more formal, like a sheath dress.  If they’re in shorts, polos, and sneakers (or team jerseys), welcome to Situation Casual — and perhaps consider jeans. [Read more...]

Open Thread: Summer Hair Secrets

I thought it might be fun to share some of our best secrets for summer hair. For example, when my hair was straighter, I felt like I was constantly battling frizz — so I kept a container of Frizz-Ease Secret Weapon at the office and would smooth it on my locks before I left the office to meet up with friends. If Frizz-Ease was somehow unavailable, I just would take a slightly bigger amount of my hand lotion (I’m addicted to Curel) and, after moisturizing my hands, smooth the remaining amount on my hair.

I have never been a fan of blowdryers in the summertime, but especially over the past 5 years or so (as my hair has gotten curlier) I’ve been doing minimal blowdrying in the summer (sometimes just 3-5 minutes of blowdrying at the crown of my hair) and then letting the rest airdry into whatever waves or curls my hair wants to go into.  [Read more...]

Coffee Break – Totes Purse Umbrella

Polka Dot Umbrella for Women by TotesI’m one of those annoyingly practical types who carries an umbrella everywhere during spring and fall, when surprise showers always seem imminent. I recently got a new mini umbrella and was amazed at how heavy it was, compared to my old, super lightweight umbrella (which I think was a sister to this one). So for today’s coffee break, I’m recommending this umbrella — I like the colorful black-and-red pattern on it, the fact that it folds to just 6″, and the weight: a mere 7 oz. Amazing. It doesn’t have auto open/close, and it isn’t really designed for massive gusts of wind — but for those days where you’re caught by surprise by the rain, this can be a lifesaver. It’s $14.95 at Amazon. Polka Dot Umbrella for Women by Totes

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