Frugal Friday’s Workwear Report: Sleeveless Cutout Twist-Front Top

Our daily workwear reports suggest one piece of work-appropriate attire in a range of prices.

I like this Nine West top — it’s a fun thing to wear under a cardigan or blazer as a slightly elevated tank top that will be very easy to throw on. It’s machine washable, too. The black, white, and blue are on sale at Macy’s for $28.99 (this color is $35.99) plus whatever coupons you have. It comes in sizes XS–XL. Sleeveless Cutout Twist-Front Top

The plus-size version is sold out at Macy’s but available at Bon Ton (also on sale).

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Comments

  1. shootie for work :

    Any good recs for shooties for work? I don’t want a super-high or super-skinny heel (I tend to destroy them with urban walking).

    Or even booties for work (will be worn with tights and dresses in biz casual office)?

    • Anonymous :

      I love Sam Edelman and Lucky Brand booties. The heels aren’t high and they are cute and comfortable.

      • Would second this comment. I have a cognac and black pair of Lucky Brand booties that are super comfortable and have a low heel.

    • Diana Barry :

      Can I jump on this too? I need new FLAT booties for work. I have Born ones from a few years back but they are starting to get beat-up looking.

      • I have clarks chelsea boots that are super comfortable and pretty cute. Lucky has some good ones, too. or often western style booties are quite comfy (though they have that small cowboy heel, although they don’t bother my knees like “real” heels). my western booties are Lucky and Target.

    • TorontoNewbie :

      La Canadienne! They have a wide selection.

    • I love my Ugg Bruno booties.

    • Clementine :

      I just picked up a GREAT pair of booties at JCrew Mercantile (aka JCrew Outlet). I got them for about $87 and they’re fantastic! Maybe a one inch heel, really simple and nice.

      I really like JCrew shoes in general. I have several pair that have held up somewhere between fine and perfectly for years. Because the shoes are a softer leather, if you’re between sizes I would size down. For me, I’m either a 9 or a 9 1/2 – at JCrew, I know the 9’s will loosen up with a bit of wear and then fit my feet perfectly.

      • Have they started to rebrand? I wouldn’t blame them…mercantile sounds so much fancier than factory! I just haven’t seen it in my neck of the woods yet.

    • Clementine :

      Longer comment in mod but JCrew Outlet.

    • I recently bought a pair of Dansko booties and they’re super comfortable! Not necessarily the absolute cutest I’ve ever seen but I definitely wear them all day in my slightly more than business casual office with tights or pants. More attractive than the standard Dansko clogs, at least….

      • brokentoe :

        I bought a pair of the Maria booties last week in black nubuck leather and have virtually worn nothing else. I’ve never owned Danskos before and I will be looking for other styles. LOVE THEM (yes – all caps are warranted!)

    • Minnie Beebe :

      I just found an AMAZING pair of Aquatalia booties at Nordstrom Rack for $98. They’re black, with a ~1.5″ heel, with small cutouts on the upper surface. I’m wearing them out tonight, and I CAN NOT wait.

      So, so comfortable– far more than my Sam Edelman Petty booties, which have a lower heel.

      Dansko booties are also great, but maybe not quite formal enough for work. I have a pair, but they’re weekend wear only for me.

    • aquitalia

  2. This is not work appropriate (even with a topper).

    • It depends on your office. I would have no problem wearing it to mine (if I didn’t loathe cut-outs).

    • Anonymous :

      This is completely appropriate under a blazer.

      • Anonymous :

        +1, a blazer would cover all the strappy bits. I mean the only skin that would be showing is a tiny bit above the chest. Alert the church elders.

    • Anonymous :

      It would be fine in my workplace, although I don’t think you could wear a regular bra with it and I don’t do strapless bras for 8 hours straight.

    • Same with my office. No way you can wear cut outs, even under blazer.

    • Aquae Sulis :

      It would be fine in my office, with a blazer or cardigan, but we have a pretty variable dress code.

    • This would be totally fine in my casual workplace/industry. I’d have to try it on, but after looking at the back I think I could even wear a regular bra with it.

    • This would definitely not be ok in my workplace

    • What makes it ok for me is that I’d wear it even if the neckline were cut at the bottom of the cutouts (I have a small bust, which may make a difference). I’d definitely wear it with a blazer though – bare arms would be more out of place here than a lower neckline!

    • Not for you, maybe. Totally appropriate under a blazer in my office. I guess the men here are well enough behaved that they don’t get distracted by seeing collar bones.

    • Agree this is not appropriate for work. So many cutouts. Honestly was wondering if it was a joke but it’s not April 1. I look forward to the Friday recommendations but this looks like something done for sponsor links rather than a legit recommendation.

  3. I asked for opinions here about a similar top from Banana Republic Factory with sleeves and narrower cut-outs (link to follow) and was overwhelmingly told to go for it. I got it in the white, and I love this top. It’s now on clearance and I’m thinking about picking it up in another color. It’s about 85% opaque – I wear a nude cami under the white to be safe. The fabric also has a bit of texture that isn’t obvious from the photos – I like it, but maybe wouldn’t if it had been a surprise. I thought about having a tailor stitch up the cutouts and still may, but have felt comfortable wearing it in the meantime.

    • http://bananarepublicfactory.gapfactory.com/browse/product.do?cid=1044976&pcid=1044975&vid=1&pid=793633011

    • link?

    • The cutouts on this BR long sleeved one are much more subtle than the pick today (and IMO much more work appropriate).

      • I tried that top on at the store and I personally found that it was cut very strangely. I’m glad I went to try it on, s I’d have been bummed to order it and have it be a disaster that I couldn’t return. Hope you have better luck than I did!

    • That’s gorgeous, and I love the blue color. If I wasn’t on my last few months of this job, I would buy that – you definitely should!!

  4. Anonymous :

    I did it! I paid off my student loans! Just had to celebrate, so many people here have inspired me to keep chugging over the years.

  5. Wandering anon :

    My job is making it almost impossible to date, and I’m not sure what to do. I work for a boutique consultancy doing fairly specialized work; it’s reasonable pay for the hours, it’s exciting, and it involves lots of travel to interesting places. I usually spend a week in one place and then move on to the next place; between now and the end of the year, I will spend a total of 5 days in my home office. I often don’t come home on weekends because if I’m in Frankfurt one week and Prague the next, there’s no point flying back to the US in between.

    Most of my coworkers are married or in long-term relationships with people they met before they t0ok this job. My company is flexible about letting significant others fly out to meet employees since we often don’t go home for stretches at a time. I think once in a relationship, I could make it work. I don’t have any idea how to get into a relationship when I don’t spend more than 5 days anywhere, including my home town. Even if I set up a bunch of dates for when I’m in town, it might be a month before I can go on a second date. I thought about setting up dates for while on the road, but I tend to visit each place on my “route” just 3-4 times per year.

    What’s the solution here? It seems like there has to be something between quitting my job that I love to give dating a chance, or continuing at my job and not dating. Is there something I’m missing?

    • Anonymous :

      Set up dates for when you are home. A month isn’t a huge amount of time if there is a good connection on the first date. You can facetime a bit in between. If you start to build a connection with someone then it may be worthwhile to try and go home for shorter turnarounds like 3 days.

      • Anonymous :

        Be open to meeting people when you are on the road as well. It’s a lot easier to travel between Frankfurt and Munich for one or two nights vs. going back Stateside.

    • givemyregards :

      If your home office is in a fairly large city, I would imagine you may be able to find others who are in a similar boat and might appreciate a partner who won’t mind that they are traveling all the time since they are also traveling all the time! If we re in your position I would try to schedule dates when I’m home, but be very clear in any online profiles (if you’re doing online dating) about your schedule, so it doesn’t come as a surprise. I would start (or continue if you already are) browsing/messaging folks while you’re on the road, so you can start chatting before you get back. I think your job definitely makes things a little tougher – in that you may have to put more explicit effort into finding someone who is compatible with it – but definitely doable!

      • Anonymous :

        This! I’m an attorney with a job that’s very heavy on the hours, and I love dating consultants who travel all the time — it makes me feel not quite so bad about being too busy to see them several times a week! I think if you’re clear with your travel limitations, you’ll eventually be able to find someone with a symbiotic lifestyle.

    • Anon in NYC :

      Caveat that I have never used one of these services, but what about a professional matchmaker who specializes in people with demanding jobs / executives? I would view that as basically a step up from you managing your online profile and finding dates – he or she could do a lot of the initial leg work for you and identify possible people who would be comfortable with your job, and then you weed them out. But, again, I have never used one of these services, so maybe I am completely off base with how they work!

      • Honestly, I’d steer clear of these. My friends have used them with no success, and my husband said he routinely got “recruited” by these matchmakers who trolled the major online sites he was on, so I don’t think they are any better at finding people than you’d be on your own. I think casual dating is totally possible when you’re home (and on the road) but it might be tougher to nurture a long term relationship. Personally, I’d try the casual bit and if you meet that amazing person, you can always reassess your job then.

    • Do you have your own social network when you travel? I think of friends from grad school, etc. who may be international – do you put out an “I am in Prague from X date to Y date, let’s meet up!” on your social media network and get responses? If so… start with those friends, tell them you’re interested in meeting new people, tell them to bring a friend to the bar/dinner where you can hold court on a Monday night in a new city and see if you jive with the new folks. Or ask them to throw a casual shindig/get-together and invite all their friends, and you! And see if you “click” with any of their friends.

      You can do the same thing the next week in Munich… and keep in touch with that special somebody from Prague, too!

    • Oh man, I would have a boy in every port :) seriously.

      • LOL me too. I just think it would be a lot of fun, but I’m gathering from your post that you’re looking for something more serious? If so, I would just set up dates when you’re home (and be pickier about who you are seeing) and then hopefully you can make something work with communication in between.

        To be honest, I’m not traveling but I’m still busy enough that I can barely see someone more than once a week or every couple weeks so I think this is definitely doable!

      • Ha! Me too!

    • My BF travels a lot for work and it has taken a serious toll on our relationship despite seeing him every weekend. Honestly, I don’t see a happy medium or real solution other than traveling less or finding someone with a similar lifestyle. I don’t see how a relationship works if you never see each other. You need to build a real connection and spend a significant amount of time together. Your job is just not conducive to that.

    • Anonymous :

      I’m curios what is reasonable pay for a job with this much travel. Would you mind sharing about how much you make per year?

  6. Wearing Heels :

    Maybe I just have sensitive (or sweaty?) feet, but I can’t wear heels without getting awful blisters. Does anyone have any tips with this? I never wear them unless for an event or important work day and then I have blisters for a week afterwards. I have purchased comfortable Cole Haan heels but I still get blisters. I asked a woman in my office recently how she wears them everyday and she retorted that I shouldn’t wear heels if I can’t walk in them and perhaps I should practice in my house at night. My problem isn’t at all walking in them – it’s the blisters that they cause. No one in my area or industry seems to wear hose and I’m in my twenties so I don’t want to look outdated, but maybe they would help. Any other ideas though?

    • What about a foot anti persparent? I do find heels more comfortable in the colder months since I wear tights so I think that definitely has something to do with it. I have also tried cloth inserts (Aldo used to sell some that people here recommended) but they took up too much room in my shoes, giving me different issues, and I wasn’t going to buy shoes in a bigger size just to see how it would work. Fwiw, I can’t stand all my Cole Han heels. Even the low heel wedges give me blisters, so I don’t think they work for everyone.

    • givemyregards :

      moleskin! I swear by this stuff – you can stick it in the shoes themselves if there is a specific place that rubs, or just plaster a piece across the back of your heel, around your pinky toe, wherever. If you do this long enough you’ll probably get the shoes broken in enough that you won’t need it anymore.

    • Anonymous :

      Are you breaking them in before you wear them for long periods? Wearing them around the house will help soften them and mold them to your feet. Have you tried blister block or moleskin or any of the blister preventatives/treatments on the foot aisle? When you try the shoe on, are you spending some time in it to see if there are any spots that are rubbing? Wearing the shoes in the store or on carpet in your house for 15-20 minutes will let you know if this is going to work for your foot, even if the shoe is known for being a comfortable brand, it may not work for you.

    • I feel you on the blisters. My feet blister very easily. However, it seems to happen most often when I’m wearing a new pair of heels or a pair that I haven’t worn in some time (I don’t wear peep toes in the winter, so the first time I put them on in the summer, I often get blisters even from the most comfortable worn-in shoe). Best advice I have for you is to try one of the many blister blocks that are similar to deodorants, get blister pads that look like bandaids for the inevitable blisters (these are incredible!!!), keep wearing the heels frequently because you will form almost a callus after some wear and as a last resort try some nude-for-you hose (I’m 32 and have been wearing them since my 20s when I graduated law school, even in a business casual setting, and if you get the exact right pair your legs will look like your legs but better honestly).

    • Try Trail Toes! https://www.trailtoes.com/

      • Similarly, I just use body glide on my feet – lasts longer than those blister block sticks and it’s fast to apply.

        • Anon in NYC :

          Body Glide on my feet certainly helps.

          OP – are you sure you have the width right for your shoes? I recently realized that I need a wide width in certain brands (Cole Haan, Sam Edelman) and it’s like night and day – I really don’t need to break shoes in anymore.

    • Fellow blister suffering and frequent heel wearer, plus years of pointe mean my feet have extra lumps and bumps to rub on (because yes you can have a bunion on your baby toe). My advice is to approach it methodically– where do you get blisters, which heels give you more blisters and which give you less, are your heels too small or too big. Turns out for me anything with a stiff leather will rip my feet to shreds, but suede and soft (way over priced) leathers do not and pumps work better than anything with a cut out (which just rubs the wrong way). I promise you there are heels that will make your feet happy, it is just a matter of finding them at a price point you can live with.

    • Lana Del Raygun :

      If you don’t want to wear hose, what about those little footie socks? They always slip down on me but I think that’s because I have narrow heels–I know other women who wear them with no problems at all.

    • What is the shape of your foot?

      I learned from this site that my foot shape is called triangular. The toe box/end of my foot is wider than my long narrow foot/heel. This means that regular shoes fit my toes fine, but my heel slips out of everything (especially heels) and I am blister pone. I have had this my whole life.

      Solution?

      Trying on a ton of heels. Using insoles, heel pads, and wearing heels around the house/locally before wearing all day at work. Mules. Mary Jane’s and other heels with straps that keep your foo from slipping. Oxfords. Flats (they tend to slip less). Boots. Booties.

    • Aquae Sulis :

      I’m with you on the blisters! I wish I knew the secret, as I’m stuck in socks or tights all year round, and would love to go without them. I don’t have particularly sweaty feet, so I don’t think it’s that.

    • Wearing Heels :

      Thank you all so much for the tips! (And for being kind unlike the woman in my office). I hadn’t thought of things like glide and moleskin and can’t wait to try them! Wonderful ideas and points here. I’ll try to report back!

      • Another thought – do you do anything to exfoliate your feet? (Like using those foot peels or getting regular pedicures). I find the #1 thing that keeps me from getting blisters is developing callouses over time, and exfoliation might be removing the callouses or preventing them from forming. It’s like nature’s own moleskin ;)

    • Are you getting the blisters in the same spot all the time or in different spots for different shoes? If it’s the same spot, it might be an issue with foot shape. Heels might be well padded and comfortable, but if they’re the wrong shape for your feet it won’t matter.

      Also do you get a lot of pedicures? If you’re scrubbing your foot calluses down really often, that might contribute. Every time I get a pedicure (this happens like once every two years) I tell them: please don’t scrub off all of my calluses; I need them. And they never. ever. listen. to. me. They always try to get my feet soft like a baby’s and then all my shoes hurt for weeks. Adult feet have calluses! Calluses protect you! Don’t scrub them off entirely! Just keep them under control so they don’t crack.

    • Maybe look for heels with a fabric lining and not leather or synthetic? I find that my rockport total motion heels are much more comfortable and keep my feet drier due to their fabric lining. My shoes with leather or – even worse – synthetic leather liners are much more likely to give me sweaty feet and blisters when I’m not wearing hose or tights.

    • Maybe look for heels with softer leather – Coach, Brooks Brothers, Aquitalia (most recently). Also soak feet every week or every other week in warm water with Epsom salts.

  7. I’ve been thinking about the Woman of Color who posted here the other day who was feeling bad from the messages that our society sends that WOC are not as beautiful as White women. I am White so I can’t empathize but I can certainly sympathize.

    First, it’s not your imagination: the white supremacist hegemony does in fact reinforce through media messages (news, entertainment and especially advertising) that WOC are ignorable. So I totally understand the source of your pain.

    Second, I wish you could see what I see when I look at people, I think everyone is beautiful, and, without going into comparisons, I think WOC are very beautiful. I think curly hair is lovely, I think brown skin is gorgeous and please know that there is at least one White person out there who believes in the beauty and glory of people of Color.

    For advice, obviously I can’t speak with any authority but one suggestion might be to ensure you surround yourself with positive representations of people who look like you. Do you have a place where you can go that is majority WOC where you can really bask in your and their beauty?

    Also, since this is very much a strong media message, I would suggest paying attention to when your painful feelings are the most acute. Is there a particular show that makes you feel extra terrible? Is it a makeup ad? Or something you see in your commute every day? There’s no shame in just turning off or avoiding horrible things. See if you can figure out the main things and maybe remove some of that from your sight/sound/consumption.

    And finally, try the Buddhist practice of lovingkindness. It’s hard, it’s hardest to cover yourself in lovingkindness but it’s a worthwhile exercise. You ARE beautiful.

    (I know the C-e tt e commenting section can be a little rough… bring it on! I promise I am not a troll, just someone who read a comment, kept thinking about it, and decided to respond. Have a great weekend everyone!)

    • Triangle Pose :

      Thank you for this. I this it was very well put. I relate to the original WOC poster from back in my teens. I am also a WOC.

      I especially like this part of your comment:

      “I would suggest paying attention to when your painful feelings are the most acute. Is there a particular show that makes you feel extra terrible? Is it a makeup ad? Or something you see in your commute every day? There’s no shame in just turning off or avoiding horrible things.”

      I think around age 20 I started doing this. It’s made a world of difference for me.

    • Rainbow Hair :

      I acknowledge that this situation is not the same, but in some ways it’s comparable, and perhaps this thought is helpful…

      I’m a fat (or whatever word you want to use here? ‘plus size’?) woman so I am bombarded with “you are not beautiful [but maybe if you buy our stuff you will be]!” messages on the reg. I’ve started following plus sized fashion people online — like the personal insta accounts of plus-sized models, etc. And it’s great to look at truly beautiful women who look more like me, and generally to surround myself with reminders of how many ways women can be beautiful. <3

    • Another white lady here :

      Thank you for expressing what I was thinking yesterday when I read this cascade.

      I am a conventionally attractive white woman, but if I were a straight man I would pursue WOC over pretty much anybody who looked like me. I admire and envy the unique features of my completely stunning female friends of color.

    • Anonymous :

      This is an extremely condescending post. If you think I’m wrong, please try saying some of these comments to a living person.

  8. Drugstore eyeliner recommendation, preferably twist-up?

    I love the way the Maybelline define-a-line goes on. It is easy to use – which is key for me because I’m not great at makeup – but smudges quickly and I end up wiping under my eyes all day.

    • Anonymous :

      L’Oreal Infallible!

    • I like the Revlon Colorstay. I only line my top eyelid, but it rarely gets smudgy

      • I like the revlon one too- and the almay twist up is a favorite of mine. I’ve started using the clinique twist up- it’s about $18 but it lasts about twice as long on me.

      • +1 to Revlon Colorstay. Nyx and Rimmel are also very good.

    • E.l.f. $3. That’s the favorite eyeliner of my $100 per face makeup artist uses. I was shocked. And she isn’t cheap because most of her other makeup is super high end. She said it has excellent staying power and deep color (ie no black looking dark grey or dull by end of the day).

      I wear this nearly every day and it’s great.

    • Thanks for posting this! I could have written your post -down to loving Mabeline going on well but then smudging. This week I was at a conference and didn’t look in the mirror until 3:30 or so, and was annoyed to find all kind of smudges underneath. Ughhhhh

      Going to try e.l.f.!

    • Have you tried a primer, like Urban Decay eyeshadow primer potion? I have a Maybelline twist-up liner but it doesn’t seem to smudge when I use primer.

      • I haven’t used a primer in ages but I might give it a try. Every six months I think I am going to up my makeup game but then never do. I’ve got loads of recs from here, though, and maybe it is really is time!

    • Anonymous :

      Revlon Colorstay on top of a Smashbox Primer. Works pretty well but not perfectly for me. Will try some other of the recommendations here!

  9. Anonymous :

    about to have a conversation i am dreading. good vibes please!

  10. Not Legal Counsel :

    General Poll: How do you know when it is time to leave a company, especially if leaving means moving to a different region for your career field and salary requirements?

    • My self-quiz has always been if I go on vacation and at the end of the vacation I’m not even a little excited to go back to work, it’s time to change things up.

      • Anonymous :

        Really? But isn’t that like literally every job? Who wants to go back to an office after three weeks of lying on a beach or , hiking or skiing?

        • Rainbow Hair :

          Pro tip: bring a toddler on your trip. I’m always a little excited to go back to work and have multiple consecutive hours not thinking about someone else’s bodily needs.

          • Anonymous :

            I have three kids. I don’t consider it a vacation if they are there. That’s a trip. Vacation = me + booze + activity + hubby or friends.

      • Anonymous :

        That quiz would never work for me. I’ve never been excited to go back to the onslaught of work waiting on my desk, no matter how great the job is.

        • +1 I would always rather not go back to work after a vacation, even in jobs I have enjoyed!

        • +1 – Not to mention that, even when you really like your job, going back to work can be more difficult because of all the catch-up that is required.

        • Anonymous :

          Yeah, I love my job, but I’ve never been excited to go back after a normal one or two week vacation. If I had a six month sabbatical, I’d probably get bored and be ready to go back to work. But a week (especially a week spent on vacation in a really awesome place) is just not enough to make me miss work, even in what I consider to be a very good job.

      • I do not see myself ever passing this test with any job…

      • Triangle Pose :

        I agree. Looks likes others above disagree, but I always am refreshed and ready to dive back in to my regular routine after being on vacation. It’s the breaking up the routine that makes going back seem appealing.

    • Anonymous :

      This question makes no sense to me.

    • There are too many variables for us to be helpful. Your values, why you’re thinking of leaving, why you don’t want to leave, why you do or don’t want to move, why you are fixed or not fixed on a certain income and therefore lifestyle … these all come into play. Some people in your situation would leave and move tomorrow. Others would probably stay. Others would leave the job, accept a lower income, and stay in their area.

  11. Another question today: do I need to get multiple quotes for life insurance? If so, do I just ask local friends for recs or do some online calculators? Is there a benefit to coupling it with other policies?

    I am way behind on this and want to get it done ASAP.

    • I was wondering about this too. I got a quote from Allstate (have used them exclusively for other insurance for many years, happily, as has my family) and i was surprised how high it was. Granted we are each 37 and each have a parent diagnosed with cancer ~ age 50 so that certainly is contributing. Still though – will be $450 combined for the two of us, each with a 30 year 2M policy.

    • Tech Comm Geek :

      Usually it’s a good idea to get a couple of quotes. You may get a better discount if you go with the company you have home/auto, but that isn’t always the case. Life insurance rates can vary quite a bit between companies.

      You can also talk to an independent agent who represents multiple companies. These are much more common in life insurance.

    • OCAssociate :

      We used Intelliquote, which lets you compare various insurers, types of insurance, and costs.

    • Select Quote.

  12. Everyday Makeup Holy Grails? :

    Someone suggested Maybelline Color Tattoo eye shadow in Bad to the Bronze earlier this week, and I picked it up during a drug store run. I LOVE IT. The description was “it takes seconds but looks like you made an effort,” which, yes.

    So what are other HGs for work makeup? I personally love Maybelline Age Rewind undereye concealer (I swear it takes it off five years) and Chanel Rose Bronze blush (it’s the best glow).

    • I totally have the Bad to the Bronze in my cart from the thread earlier this week. Excited to try it.

      Question about the Age Rewind… I’ve wanted to try it forever. Can it stand alone or do I need to have something for it to blend into? I don’t wear any makeup on my face currently.

      • Anonymous :

        When I’ve tried it standalone my husband remarked that it looks a little weird under my eyes. I figured if he could notice that then it was probably evident to others too. I like it better when I can blend it in a little, either wearing tinted moisturizer, BB cream, or even a powder foundation.

    • Clinique black honey almost lipstick. I don’t find it to be the greatest color in the world, but it’s incredibly flexible and adds a bit of polish compared to not wearing lipstick. Feels like chapstick (moisturizing), subtle, goes with almost all skin tones, can put it on without a mirror after rushing to the train.

      • Similarly the Clinique Chubby Sticks – easy to put on without a mirror and just enough color to make me feel put together.

      • I would love an equivalent but only buy cruelty-free makeup…any suggestions? Brunette with green eyes and yellow undertones if that’s helpful; I get pretty tan in the summer and pretty pale in the winter.

        My everyday makeup holy grail is Wet n Wild’s brow pencil. It goes on easily, lasts all day, and doesn’t get gummy like some other brow pencils I’ve tried.

        • Posted below, but Lipstick Queen has sheer shades (hello sailor, frog prince and one other I can’t remember) that would fit the bill & I’m almost certain they’re cruelty free.

        • E.l.f. sheer berry lipstick. I have 5 tubes and wear it almost daily. cruelty free. there’s also sheer blush (redder). the pink and nude don’t work for me.

        • Wet n Wild has chubby lipsticks, too.

    • Linda from HR :

      I’ve mentioned this here a few times, but I swear by with Maybelline’s dream fresh BB cream!

      As for the slightly higher end stuff, I love Stila “stay all day” liquid lipcolor, and Kat Von D tattoo liner, the brown is perfect for everyday use and it’s so easy to apply.

    • Nyx Eyebrow Powder with Anastasia Beverly Hills brow brush. It’s a super cheap powder that’s just as good as the expensive stuff, and the brush is holy grail status

    • Veronica Mars :

      Glad you enjoyed it! Here are some of my other favorite drugstore products that I buy again and again: Elf HD powder (in loose or pressed, basically a dupe of the Makeup Forever HD Powder), NYX HD eye primer (dupe for Urban Decay’s primer potion), ELF blush/bronzer in Fiji (matte and $4– it’s my go-to summer look. I can easily fake a sunkissed look by applying the bronzer and then adding some of the blush to my hairline, nose and cheeks. It gives the look like I just got a tiny bit too much sun which is perfect for a sunscreen devotee). For high-end, I always use and buy Nars creamy concealer and set it with Laura Mercier’s radiant powder (haven’t found a dupe of this yet) for under eye circles.

    • Former Retail :

      Wet N Wild mascara in the magenta colored tube. Someone here recommended it, and it’s my new favorite. Not clumpy, buildable, doensn’t wear or flake off.

      • Oooh yeah, I think CountC recommended it! I also love it. Quick swipe in the morning=work appropriate, but it’s super easy to build more volume for nights out or more formal occasions.

        And it still cracks me up that I’ve always been SUCH a princess about makeup brands, and now Wet n Wild is slowly taking over my makeup bag…

        • YES! It’s my fave and it’s the only mascara I have replaced regularly because it’s so inexpensive.

        • Former Retail :

          Yeah, I hadn’t bought that brand since I was mabye 12! And it’s too low-brow even for the Target in my town, apparently.

          • I wouldn’t touch Wet n Wild when I was 12! Granted I wasn’t that into makeup until I was 17 or so, but until then I would just steal my mom’s nice stuff and lie about it when she caught me. Then at 17 I went straight to well-curated basics from Clinique/Lancome/etc. At 29 I have a lot more disposable income, but apparently a much better-developed filter for what’s worth paying more for!

    • Lipstick Queen in Hello Sailor – feels like a lip balm, goes on sheer, kind of blue/purple-y then fades to a perfect for you pink that has a slight stain. It’s easy to apply without a mirror & you get to pull out a bright blue lipstick to apply – it also makes teeth appear whiter! Worth every penny. I think they have a yellow one that turns coral and a green one that turns hot pink, if you’re into funky sheer lipsticks.

      If you have light hair/light eyebrows the NYX micro eyebrow pencil (the one with a spoolie attached) in Ash Brown is the perfect blonde eyebrow shade that isn’t warm or too dark. This is something I’ve hunted for for years.

      All of the ELF matte lipsticks are good, as are the NYX soft matte lipsticks if you like bold creams or nudes.

      Another NYX find is their highlighter/illuminator – they have different shades for different skin tones, but I use a powder one in the shade ritualistic. For those of you who were worried about looking older than you are because of makeup, a bit of highlighter on your cheekbones, inner corner of your eyes, brown bones & maybe the tip of your nose will add a subtle natural glow that offsets any mattifying makeup but isn’t shimmery or glittery, you just look healthy. I wear mine on top of my blush because I don’t want all of my makeup to have a glowy effect & a little goes a very long way (I just tap my blush brush once for each cheek).

    • Revlon kiss balm. I look really washed out without any lip color. This is more pigmented than Maybelline’s baby lips, but still has the texture of a lip balm. I find it to be moisturizing and I like that the color layers over the course of the day.

    • NYX Control Freak clear brow gel. Doesn’t feel crunchy at all and keeps my brows in place all day.

    • Anastasia Brow Wiz or one of the many dupes on the market (I’m currently using the Sephora brand one, it’s just as good, so is the NYX one). If you’re like me and have permanent dark circles, an orangey color corrector under Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer takes 30 seconds and makes a ton of difference. Laura Mercier Secret Brightening Powder to set it all and Voila! No dark circles! Finally, my Beauty Blender lets me do my makeup in lightening speed. I love that I can put on my foundation, color corrector, concealer, and powder on with one tool!

    • Diorskin nude bb cream applied with a big fluffy brush
      Tri sh mce voy eye base essentials in bare
      Stila liquid eyeliner in moss
      And/or Sephora crayon contour pencil in flirting game ($10!)
      Tri sh mce voy high volume mascara (tube type)
      Clinique instant lift for brows pencil in soft brown
      Tarte blush in true love.

      My lipstick varies but I like anything by Laura Mercier.

    • Drug store pick: Clump Crusher mascara. It’s not mega volumizing or mega lengthening or anything, but it’s a nice polished mascara look for work. And I HATE clumps!

    • I love IT Cosmetic’s CC cream (it’s like a tinted spf 50 sunscreen) and NARS radiant creamy concealer

    • Right now I’m using:
      -The Ordinary Serum Foundation – I love, love, love this. More than any foundation I’ve ever used.
      -Wet and Wild MegaSticks Balm Stain
      -Maybelline Color Tattoo eyeshadow
      I’m not using mascara right now as I can’t find a drugstore brand that doesn’t end up under my eyes by midday. Any recos are appreciated.

      • Try Maybelline Lash Sensational! In waterproof if you like waterproof formulas, but the regular doesn’t smudge or flak either

    • Rainbow Hair :

      How do you apply the bad-to-the-bronze? Maybe my fingers are weird but when I put them in a pot like that my nail nicks the surface and it feels gross.

      • Use the pad of your middle or ring finger to gently tap the surface of the makeup in the pot, then tap the makeup onto your eyelid. That’s how I do it, anyway. It takes practice but eventually you’ll stop sticking your nail into the makeup. I ruined a pot doing that until I figured out to just use the flat pad of my finger.

      • CostAccountant :

        I wear Bad to the Bronze every single day. I use a cheap Target eyeshadow brush.

    • Anonymous :

      My new holy grail is the Dr. Jart tiger grass color corrector. It’s green, turns beige, corrects redness, and I LOVE it. It fixes all the weird redness around my nose and on my cheeks and just makes my skin look like the best version of itself.

      • Anonymous :

        Also, Sunday Riley Good Genes is completely amazing. It produces an actual glow. I have other AHA products and various acid toners and was skeptical that this was really any better, but it is AMAZING.

    • Laura Mercier caviar eyeshadow stick. I use Amethyst and love it. So easy to apply and it stays all day.

      NARS multi stick in Orgasm. Easy to use and blend and warms up my face when I’m tired.

      Lancôme effacernes waterproof under eye concealer. I’m lazy and apply with my fingers. It doesn’t always cover my dark under eye circles 100% but it works well and doesn’t crease or budge.

      Beauty blender. Smoothes everything out at the end. I don’t use it to apply makeup because I use my fingers for that. I only use it for blending.

      Jane Iredale lip balm in crush. Lightweight balm that is moisturizing and has color. I think it has SPF too.

      Also, this won’t work for everyone, but I have relatively curly lashes anyway and read one time about a makeup artist using his thumb to press lashes up rather than an eyelash curler, so that’s what I do right before applying mascara. I have deepset eyes and have difficulties using eyelash curlers anyway. This gets my eyelashes pointed in the right direction and takes mere seconds to do.

      • +1 to Lancome effacernes. I have undereye circles even after sleeping as much as I want and it works better than any others I’ve tried. On really bad days I use it over BeneFit PuffOff which looks like a ridiculous product but really works to get rid of eyebags unlike many others with same claims.
        +1 to using fingers to curl eyelashes. I use bent index fingers to press softly up while looking down right after applying mascara.

  13. MBA Interview Attire :

    For MBA OCI and follow-up interviews (consulting, banks, corporate etc):
    -is a navy Boss pant suit ok (traditional cut), or should I wear a skirt suit? I could just get the skirt and have both options
    -is a burgundy suede shoe ok, or should I keep looking for something navy or oxblood leather?

    I normally don’t overthink things this much but really want to nail this. I’m trying to balance looking conservative enough while still projecting some confidence. If it matters I’m 27, very tall and have never had a problem looking too young. Interviews will be in a cold place in the winter.

    • Pants suit is okay at this point. I would probably get the skirt too just to have more flexibility.

      Burgundy shoe is fine, but suede is probably a mistake, both in terms of not looking as business-y, but also likely to be damaged if there’s any snow/ice/sludge.

    • Pant suit sounds fine, but I don’t think I’d do a burgundy/oxblood shoe. I love navy and burgundy in general, but I don’t think I’d wear a shoe in the red color shade for an interview.

  14. Anonymous :

    How do you cope when you’re stuck in a job you resent? Every moment I’m here I’m miserable. I’m job searching of course, and thinking ahead to the future – I’m leaning way out of my current job. But I just don’t want to be here and I dread going to work in the morning. Starting to feel very hopeless.

    • This happened to me recently. I filled gaps of time with something that I wouldn’t normally be able to do during the rest of my life/day – organizing, planning, creating spreadsheets of things to organize/plan. I also did some online drawing tutorials and drew for a few minutes each day. Each thing was a reward for getting through the drudgery of work at a job I loathed.

      And I am now in a new job that I love. Hang in there.

    • I’m in a similar situation. I’ve started writing every night for about 15 minutes – a lot of it is just about what I want to do in my new job, and sometimes I write about the messed up stuff going on at my current job. I also do a gratitude list there. It’s been really helpful. When I’m having a particularly bad day at work, I’ll just do my writing during the day there.

      @H13 – I do that, too! I find making spreadsheets of things to plan oddly comforting.

  15. Cobble Hill Ella - Large :

    Who wants to sell me their LARGE Cobble Hill Ella?

    I ordered the one Kate Spade sells now and it’s too small! I can’t find the large anywhere on Amazon or Ebay.

  16. Me Too Stories? :

    Can I share my Me Too story here? And maybe can you share yours to make me feel better? I’m triggering and reliving it for the first time in 12 years and just wish I could stuff it back down again.

    College, 2002 – end of long, emotional breakup. We had just come off a month of FWB and I decided that’s it, I can’t do this anymore. We’re done. He showed up at my apartment late at night after a date with someone else. I let him in, and immediately felt uneasy. He seemed distant and cold, and I remember just wanting to get him out of my apartment.

    He sat down and proceeded to tell me all the reasons why I wasn’t a good fit for him. Then said he was afraid he’d never find someone else with the amazing physical chemistry we had, kissed me, rough, and started to push me back on the bed. I said something like, “No, I don’t want to do this,” and pushed to sit back up. He let me sit up a bit, then grabbed my left arm and twisted it around my back, slammed me back down on the bed, and pulled my right arm up over my head. I was pinned, couldn’t get him off me, and felt like I was being pushed and smothered into the bedding. I couldn’t get him off me and when I struggled, he just put more weight on me. I stopped struggling and just kind of left my body??? I don’t know how else to explain it. I just checked out.

    I remember coming back around, still laying on the bed with my arm twisted behind my back, and I didn’t even move. I watched him get dressed. Then he looked at me with disgust on his face and said, “Now I know I don’t love you anymore,” and left.

    I didn’t know I just went through [email protected], you know? He was my first serious boyfriend and there had been so much I hate you/I love you drama. Then the causal FWB thing. I felt so used and worn out from all of that, I don’t think I had anything left to process a rape. Over the next few months he would try to call me (always between midnight and 2 pm) and I’d hide from the phone–hide from him. If he would knock on my door (same hours) I would grab this wooden bar stool and crouch in my kitchen, like if he comes in I’m going to hit him with this? I don’t know. I felt crazy and scared.

    When he got a cell phone (ha–this really was back in the day) he called me from that and I fell for it and answered it, felt punched in the gut, and then I was NICE TO HIM. I was freaking nice to him. Because that’s what I do. Ugh. After catching up on each other’s lives (again–ugh) he said that he wanted to talk about that last night. According to him, it was a night where we both used each other, and it was good to get that out of our systems and realize that we will never work. And he remembered that I “liked it rough” and tried to give me one last really good night.

    So, for my me too, I got Date [email protected] and a heavy dose of Mind F’ing. But I have a really good upside! I did a lot of wild and crazy online dating after that (because I didn’t feel safe leaving my apartment without a man to protect me) and EVERY.SINGLE.MAN I met was unfailingly kind, understanding, respectful, and never laid an unwanted finger on me. So after a horrible, awful, bad guy I have NEVER run into another jerk. Either dating or in the working world. I’m left feeling like there are a LOT of good men in the world. :)

    • Thanks for sharing. I don’t feel up to sharing my stories right now, but just want to say how amazing it has been to see so many women coming forward. I think it has been really eye-opening for some of the men in my life to realize how pervasive a problem it is.

    • Just know that your response was 100% typical in that moment – we talk a lot about flight or flight but there’s a third one – freeze. Our bodies take over and we’re wired to do what we can to just survive and a lot of survivors describe a similar thing to leaving their bodies, I do.

      I was in an on & off again relationship & he was very controlling. Shamed me into a lot of stuff, and didn’t know what to call it then but time & age have given me enough room to call it was it was – a s s ult and [email protected] Know you aren’t alone, and you’re a survivor! that’s something to be very proud of. I found a lot of help through my local YWCA in group therapy to work with other female survivors, your local one probably has similar programs and they’re all free.

      • Me Too Stories? :

        Thanks for sharing freeze with me! Struggling got me nowhere but a deeper push into the bedding and feeling like I couldn’t breathe. To top it off, this move of his was something he used to joke around and practice on me, daring me to get my arms free. It was cute and fun as horseplay, but Spoiler Alert: I never could get free.

        I also knew him angry. I had been manhandled during angry s*x, held down during arguments so I couldn’t leave, face grabbed so I had to look at him, and thrown into a wall. Twice. I think that lead to my check out–I knew it was hopeless? I just wanted it to end?

        • It would be understandable to freeze in that situation, even without the previous violent incidents. So sorry that you went through this both the s.a. and the domestic violence, and thank you for sharing your story. It sounds like he called to try and assuage his guilt in his own mind. I’m sure he knows deep down that it was wrong. And even if he doesn’t, you know and we know it was wrong.

    • Thank you for sharing, and I’m sorry that you went through this. I’m glad that you’re in a better place now.

    • Thanks for sharing. It sounds like he tried to justify his actions to appease his guilty conscience. Do abusers ever think of themselves as perpetrators?

      I’d like to share my #MeToo story too… I don’t know why, I haven’t been able to talk about this publicly. In 7th grade I was groped at school everyday multiple times a day by my male classmates. It was a group of about 20 or so, who every time they had the opportunity, would “cop a feel”, or a squeeze, or, well you get the picture. To my knowledge it wasn’t a widespread phenomenon, it was just me targeted because I was…developed. After a while I just stopped reacting when it happened, it became a mundane and regular part of my school day. One time a teacher saw it happen in class and *I* got detention. As a 13 year old I was really concerned with “being cool”, so I never tried to get anyone in trouble. I never told my parents. As a 27 year old I can see how after effects of this experience has permeated my life in negative ways, and I am HORRIFIED to think of other children, or my future children, experiencing this treatment.

      • So sorry to hear that you experienced this. I can’t imagine how hard it must have been as a child to suffer like that.

      • I’m sorry…wtf? YOU got detention? That is insane and I am so angry on your 7th grade self’s behalf.

        • Anonymous :

          Yeah! The older woman teacher who meted out this punishment sat me down in private and talked to me in a very condescending tone about how my behavior was not appropriate. I’ll never forget it.

      • OMG this happened to me in 7th grade too. It wasn’t a group, but just one boy who did it repeatedly. I never told anyone either. My friend saw it happen and went to go tell the teacher, but I wouldn’t let her and made her swear on everything that she wouldn’t tell. I don’t even know why? I felt embarrassed and like I would get in trouble instead. I also developed sooner than the other girls.

      • Me Too Stories? :

        Do abusers ever think of themselves as perpetrators?

        Lord, I hope so. I tracked my ex down on Facebook and he looks like a perfectly normal guy. Sr. Analyst at a bank. Wife. Two very cute little girls. He got fat and everyone in his family looks happy.

        It’s hard for me to see those sweet little girls and think, “Your dad held me down, [email protected] me, told me he no longer loved me, left me lying dead-eyed on my dorm room bed…and then called me later and told me WE BOTH USED EACH OTHER EQUALLY and I liked it. And now he’s your father…and her wife…and you guys probably don’t think he’s a monster at all. He’s probably a good guy. It looks like you all love each other.”

        And then I look at him and think (and it’s kind of easy to head talk to this fat older man who barely resembles the 23 year old that I knew), “You have these 3 women in your life, and I hope it makes you LITERALLY SICK TO YOUR STOMACH to think of some young guy hurting them the way you hurt me. I hope you had a bitter, snot-nosed, come-to-Jesus moment and realized how perverted and disturbed you were as a young man.”

        Then I click away, and fight back the horrible thoughts that someone else’s husband–maybe one of my friends–could have also date [email protected] or assaulted a girl in college. Because there are so many of us who have been assaulted, and only X amount of men, and there has to be some freaking overlap.

        • Me Too Stories? :

          I’m sorry. This is very twisted and dark and I probably shouldn’t have posted it. :(

          • anon4this :

            Don’t apologize! I honestly think this is a fair reaction and you shouldn’t feel bad for having such thoughts in reaction to a man who did something so terrible to you.

          • Rainbow Hair :

            There’s an article on Jezebel today, an interview by a woman with the man who [email protected] her. It might be interesting for you to read it.

          • No. It’s totally normal. There is a guy I hate-follow on Facebook who [email protected] one of my best friends when she was blackout drunk in college. We’re all in our 30s now, he’s now married and has an infant daughter. I think the same thing about him. Same with this guy who was a complete scumbag that I went to summer camp with. He was in a new girls pants each week, was just a creepy gross user of women, and even hooked up with a camper when he was a counselor. He now has three daughters. I hope they both realize what garbage human beings they were and are deeply regretful.

        • Too familiar :

          This description is my college rapist exactly: “I tracked my ex down on Facebook and he looks like a perfectly normal guy. Sr. Analyst at a bank. Wife. Two very cute little girls. He got fat and everyone in his family looks happy.” I don’t know what’s more horrifying- the possibility this could have been the same guy, or the more likely scenario that there are a lot of guys out there who fit that description.

    • Thank you so much for sharing!

      I was r a p e d after repeatedly saying no by the president of a company I interned for one summer in college. We had been at happy hour and I had too many drinks so he offered to take me home. I was also underage so terrified of getting in trouble with my parents. Instead, he took me to a hotel room and forced me in despite me repeatedly saying I didn’t want to go. I was around 110 lbs and he is a former semi-pro football player. He r a p e d me in the hotel room while I kept saying no. I was so upset and figured my parents would blame me that even despite looking like hell when I finally arrived home (he drove me home – I was so shocked I didn’t know how to say no) so I just blamed it on being too drunk and naturally got in trouble.

      I went through a long period of lots of casual $ex after that because I didn’t think I was worth it and I just didn’t care. I was on auto pilot and ended up in some fairly bad situations which involved more non-consensual sexual behavior. I drank A LOT and am really surprised I never hurt myself more or anyone else, for that matter. I attempted suicide in my 20s for a number of reasons – this was only one of them. I went through a lot of therapy and am in a much better place now. However, my parents still have no idea. I am not very close with them and I just don’t want to deal with it.

      Yesterday, I posted on FB about this happening to me – I typed his full name and linked to his Wikipedia page. IT FELT SO GOOD. EFF YOU DUDE.

      • Awesome! SO PROUD OF YOU!

        All the hugs. You survived a lot and came out the other side an awesome bada$$! You should be so proud of yourself for being so brave. This internet stranger is super proud of you.

        • Thank you!! I know not all women can or want to do what I did. And that’s okay.

          I wanted to be one voice speaking out against the actual person who did this to me. It was important for me to do it. I am fortunate enough that it will not affect my job or my safety, but I know not everyone is in that situation.

          • I should also note that I know even if it won’t affect a woman’s job or safety it’s still okay for them not to name their assailant. It can be traumatic and can cause a whole host of other issues. I wish we could provide victims a place where they could name their assailant and not be retraumatized and that we could bring them justice, but I know it is much more complicated than that and I know the world is still not a safe place for us to say and do what we want and what we think is right. I hate that.

      • Me Too Stories? :

        I wanted to say a giant YES!!! to your experience of offering lots of casual s*x because I felt worthless, too. I gave nice guys s*x almost like a thank you card.

        “Dear Josh–thank you for walking me to the door last night and carrying my leftovers from Benningan’s! Here’s some s*x. I really appreciate having you in my life! x0xo”

        I was also RIDICULOUSLY ADAPTABLE. I could be sporty. Funny. Witty. Adorable. What do you most want to see, Mr. Nice Guy? I’ll give it to you! Between the s*x and the adaptable personality and interests, I was essentially buying body guards.

        In fact, I sometimes wonder if *I’m really who I want to be* today, or am I just a reflection of what my husband wanted to see 14 years ago? Because I was still in that adaptable stage when we met. I will never, ever tell him that.

        • I hear you. Only now that I am in my late 30s do I know who I really am, and to be fair I still try to be better everyday BUT not for anyone else, for me.

          That said, I think you can still explore things that you are interested in but haven’t done for whatever reason and your husband can be a part of it! Who knows, you may discover something that both of you love and it will be a great addition to your relationship :)

      • I can’t bring myself to type out my story, but first #metoo. Second, I did the same that you described and always wondered if my October of freshman year of college #meetoo situation was linked to my 180 pivot in behavior nearly immediately thereafter – heavy drinking and very casual relationships for basically the next 3 years. I went from being just an awkward non-drinker to going off the reservation. Never sought out therapy – probably should have – but hearing your account, CountC, makes it a little easier for me to digest my past behavior, which I am often highly ashamed of and try to block out.

        Probably the worst part about it was my friends (hall mates, really) at the time knew the guy and staged an ‘intervention’ for me because they all concluded he was too nice of a guy to do this and that I must have just blacked out and/or made up what happened… that I was too ‘inexperienced’ before the incident to be able to allege what happened actually happened. Girls are the worst sometimes.

        • I am so sorry this happened to you and that your hall mates didn’t believe you. It really makes you doubt whether your recollection is the right one or if you did anything wrong. It SUCKS.

          Please don’t feel ashamed of your behavior! Easier said than done, I know. I dated someone a while ago who told me I was a w h o r e bc of that period of my life. I was not strong enough to break up with him right that minute, but I did eventually break up with him because he was emotionally abusive. Regardless, you do not have anything to be ashamed of but I completely understand why you would block it out. This internet stranger supports you!

        • Anonymous :

          Girls are definitely the worst sometimes. My sister’s MeToo includes shitty college girls who said that her attempted [email protected] couldn’t have done it because he was the best friend of a guy that one of their friends was dating and he wouldn’t be friends with someone like that. Ruined my sister’s college life because not only did she have to deal with an attempted [email protected] but also with finding out how shitty her friends were.

      • usuallylurking :

        Proud of you.

    • I’m so sorry that happened to you. It doesn’t matter that he was your boyfriend before, or that you let him in, or that you stopped struggling. No means no and it was rape.

      I hope you can see a therapist about this.

    • I was s3xually assaulted but not raped in college. A bunch of us (too many) crammed into a car to go out for pizza. We were freshmen and not drinking. I was halfway on this boy’s lap in the back seat and I was wearing a sundress. He started running his hands up my legs under my dress. I was squirming and saying no and trying to get away but we had about 5 people in the back seat and there was nowhere to go. He had his other arm around me and was holding me where I was and eventually got his hand into my underwear and then his fingers into my (virgin) vagina. It hurt. He was rubbing his erection against my butt/thigh and I think he ejaculated in his pants.

      The entire time I was saying stop it get off me and yelling, but I was also giggling. I don’t know why, fear and nervousness I guess. I felt ashamed, after, that I was giggling and I wondered if that was why the boy next to me wasn’t helping. He had to know what was happening. The car was loud with talking and laughing and the stereo was up high so I know my friend in the front seat didn’t know what was happening, but how could the boy next to me not know?

      I felt dirty and stupid and ashamed after this.

      Carl, the boy who assaulted me, thought I was his girlfriend now.

      This all happened before I had ever been kissed by a boy.

      • Me Too Stories? :

        Holy crap! I can’t even imagine what Carl was thinking. He made everyone in that car uncomfortable, and I’m so sorry that was your first s*xual experience.

        And I understand the uncomfortable giggling. I was NICE AND OBLIGING when my ex finally tracked me down on the phone, even though my heart was pounding in my throat and I wanted to vomit. I should have just hung up!

        We all look back and wonder why we didn’t [fill in the blank].

      • In my state that’s rape. Doesn’t have to be PIV, can be finger, mouth or object, and it’s still rape.

      • I am very sorry this guy was alowed to get away with this. I was in a situeation where a guy put his hand’s up my skirt in college, at a Fraternity party in the dorm, but b/c I was wearing a DANSKIN, he could not get underneath it to where he wanted to put his finger’s. FOOEY on HIM! I told the RA about what he did and the RA told him, with me standeing there, that if he ever put his hands on me or any other woman that way, the RA was goeing to beat the @$%@#% out of him. The RA was very professional about it. I never even told my family about it b/c I am sure my dad would have castrated that guy. BTW, that guy is now a big treasurer of a teck company in Maryland. FOOEY on him. And he is MARRIED w/kids!

    • I shared my story with you but I’m in m0d. Hard to use words to describe these things that don’t result in m0d I guess. Check back later.

      • The Artist Formerly Known As :

        After a week of thinking I didn’t, reading the posts here made me realize I have a #metoo story as well. It was this guy I was madly in love with in college. I think he hated himself more than he could love anyone, and went out of his way to hurt me. Then one night we got into a very big fight and he hurt me, more emotionally than physically, but physically as well. It’s not rape, it wasn’t even particularly sexual, but for all I had known, he could have killed me that night. I have tried very hard not to think about it, but I think that experience still colors how I approach romantic relationships.
        He still checks up on me a couple of times a year, because he knows what he did (this was not the only shitty thing he did to me, not by a long shot). He knows he is a perpetrator. This does help.

    • Mine doesn’t feel… important enough? A very senior male colleague, in a meeting, within earshot of others, said I should come back to his office to watch p**n with him. He said it as a joke, so I tried to joke it away too and said something like “Oh, I don’t need YOU if I want to do that.” and everyone laughed and we moved on. Then later in the meeting, another (junior) woman joined us and he repeated the “joke”, that the two of us should come to his office together. I said something like “We already discussed this. We don’t need YOU involved at all.” She kept silent. Everyone laughed. I still kick myself for going along with the joke, but I didn’t know what else to do. I still don’t, really, as it’s not like HR would have done anything. Speaking up would have gotten both me and the other woman ostracized in a very male-dominated industry. We didn’t have enough political capital to spend it on fighting this. And in the end, we justified it as such a small comment. It’s not like he DID anything, really. Except now, in light of all this, I can see it was him sexualizing every woman who walked into that room. And I did nothing.

      • Anonymous :

        This is important, thanks for sharing. There are so many situations, like this one, where it feels like there’s nothing we can do about s*xual harassment like this because the consequences may be worse than the act itself and it just…hurts.

    • Rainbow Hair :

      Ooof, to all of you, I’m so sorry and mad that this happened to you.

      I understand why this topic is awful for some women, and I hope no one feels like they have to share, or that they have to read, or that they have to do anything. For me it’s empowering (surely there’s a better word) to put this out there because it took me so darn long to realize that actually, what they did was not ok. Now a part of me wants to scream, “this happened and it was not ok!” For me, it’s helpful (???) to hear other women saying similar things — it validates that these things really did happen and they really aren’t ok.

      In that spirit…

      The first person I was ever with just didn’t take no for an answer. I thought I could trust him (because, you know, we were in love and all that, and he knew I wanted to wait until marriage) but we were making out and he would like… well there’s no appropriate way to describe it… he’d put it in, I’d push back and say “no” and he’d do it again, “no” and again, “no” and again… and eventually I thought, “well, eff it, I can’t really claim I’m a v*rgin any more, so what right do I have to say no?” So I stopped saying no. I slept with him a few more times because I didn’t think I had any grounds to refuse. It took me forever to admit that it was something bad.

      Then there was the good friend who crashed at my place after drinks, in law school. He was the first guy I knew who described himself as a feminist (red flag?). We made out a little. I had, at that time, a pretty strict “p-in-v s*x is for serious relationships” thing, which he knew. He tried to do it with me anyway. I told him no. I kept my unders on. I passed out. I woke up to him on top of me, doing what I had refused. I pushed him off and *he* freaked out, like “oh I don’t want you to think I’m this kind of guy” and then I ended up comforting him. Same thing over chat the next morning, me saying, “it’s OK, it’s NBD, I’m fine.” I could not deal with it, so I just pretended it didn’t happen for a long, long time. Years and years later I confronted him about it and he was ashamed and apologetic. Nauseatingly, his response was more appropriate than that of my friends who couldn’t stand to think he might not be a great guy (and who told me I was overreacting because it was so long ago).

      And then of course there are the dirtbag employers who all blur together, the pushy guys at parties, the ones who were old enough to know better, etc. …

      Light it all on fire.

      (NB: I am going to teach my daughter that v*rginity is a patriarchal scam.)

      • Me Too Stories? :

        OMG. You literally just described my first time. (Which was with my [email protected] boyfriend, go figure.)

        **Side note, but holy effing sh!t. How much of my college years have I blocked out? Your post just flooded this back for me–and I’m grateful that you posted and that I’m remembering this again–but THROW MORE FUEL ON THE FIRE OF MY RAGE TODAY, WORLD!!!***

        I also wanted to wait until marriage, and he kept going farther and father. He used his hand and broke my hymen. There was blood on him and the sheets (a fair amount, weirdly) and I apologized for the mess because (duh, girl) even though I really wanted to cry because I knew that was a big deal. I felt defeated and just said something like, “Well, I guess it doesn’t really matter now. You can just do it if you want.”

        Romantic, eh?

        • Rainbow Hair :

          It’s horrifying (and affirming, I guess) to know that it’s a trend. You’re not the only one who has told me she has a similar story. Hugs.

          • Me Too Stories? :

            Wait–I also need to comment on the part where your law school [email protected] was ashamed and apologetic, but the rest of the friend group was like, “Ohhh–poo! Charlie’s a good guy, stop riding his @ss!”

            See, I get not wanting to see “evil” in a friend. We don’t want to think of someone we know as a cheater, a [email protected], an abuser, a murderer. People don’t usually walk around flashing their dark side, so I get it.

            But how can you listen to a man acknowledge, admit, express shame and apologize to a woman for [email protected] and then turn to the woman and be like, “Okay, let it go now. That’s enough drama for one evening. We’re all here to catch up and have fun!”

            I’m angry for you.

          • Rainbow Hair :

            Thanks for being angry for me. It’s sad for me to see friendships ending over this (mine with the people who don’t have my back), which in a funny way makes me empathize with them (“how can my good ol’ friend disappoint me so much?!”) but also… I don’t think I need friends who can’t get it on something so serious.

    • anon for this :

      Thank you for sharing your story. This campaign has been so empowering, but has also brought back some painful memories. I admire all of the women brave enough to come forward IRL.

      I was a teenager. He was my high school coach. I asked him to buy me alcohol, so I thought I asked for it or wanted it in some way. More than a decade later I have trouble sorting through it all in my head.

      #metoo

  17. what would you wear? :

    I’m a senior associate headed to dinner at a trendy Chicago restaurant tonight with my boss, his wife, and a client and his wife. Since it’s a Friday night and spouses will be joining, I feel like I need to step up my game from today’s work outfit, but am at a loss for the most appropriate tone to strike. I would appreciate any outfit guidance or inspiration that anyone is will to share. Thanks for any ideas!

    • Anonymous :

      I’d wear what I wore to work, which would be my favorite work appropriate dress.

    • It sort of depends on your company and the venue. I would probably just wear an awesome work dress and slightly more blingy jewelry than normal. So for example, I have a bright purple sheath with an interesting sort of origami-ish keyhole neckline; I’d wear that and some Alexis Bittar drop earrings and maybe a chunky gold cuff bracelet.

    • Anonymous :

      Wide-legged trousers with heeled booties or pumps, and a fitted/cropped leather jacket or blazer. Or the more boring but still valid choice of a sheath dress (maybe a shorter/more form fitting one) with blazer and heels.

      • Rainbow Hair :

        I work with a woman who slays in a jumpsuit — wide legs, sleeveless. Imagine that in black with a bright (cobalt?) blazer and heels? It’s a bit ~more~ but it might be fun at this trendy restaurant.

    • Cobble Hill Ella - Large :

      Are you going straight from work?

      I’ve gotten a lot of compliments on the JCrew Factory Origami Dress. Wear it under a blazer at the office. Add great shoes and blingy earrings and a cuff bracelet for evening.

      https://factory.jcrew.com/ca/p/womens-clothing/dresses/wear_to_workdresses/origami-sheath-dress/g6420?sale=true&isFromSale=true&color_name=warm-emerald&N=217+17+10139&Nloc=en&Ntrm=&Npge=2&Nrpp=60&Nsrt=3&hasSplitResults=false

    • I like the suggestions re interesting sheath dress and louder jewelry as striking the right tone, but personally sheath dresses aren’t my thing. My go to for “is this even professional or evening oriented?!” is regular black slacks + sparkly top.

  18. Cookbooks :

    I’ve been out sick for two days and return to a letter informing me that I didn’t get the (internal) position for which I recently interviewed. I’m really bummed. Tell me what exciting things your doing this weekend!

    • Cookbooks :

      *you’re. I’m still sluggish.

    • Ugh, I’m so sorry!! I hope you have something fun planned for your weekend.

      Mine is not super exciting, but should be pretty nice.

      I have a HH tonight with a friend from law school, then low-key night with bf. Saturday night we are headed to my bff and husband’s house for a night around the fire pit with a small group of friends. Dog and bf will be in tow. Then Sunday I have a race on a new course in a really beautiful part of PA. I took Monday off to take care of a bunch of appointments for me and the dog and errands.

    • Hopefully having a baby!

  19. Does anyone have the Beachwaver? Is it worth the money? I’m really bad at doing my hair, especially the back…

    • I got one and returned it (sorry to say). I didn’t find it much easier to curl the back using the Beachwaver vs. a regular curling iron, and as it turned out, the rotating mechanism made me really nervous because I would sometimes pull my hair too tight.

  20. The story of Lulu, the dog who decided her CIA training was not for her, is helping me face life today. (On Twitter and/or NYT)

    • + 1

    • I’m a Grinch I guess but it made me sad. Lulu looked so sad in the pictures. I know she got a happy ending but it made me think about all the other working dogs who probably don’t love their lives but have to keep working.

      • +1.

        I work somewhere with some fantastic service dogs, whose owners take them off duty every once in a while so they can puppy around and get lovins from people like me. It warms my heart, but I wanted to snuggle poor Lulu in all those pictures (also, I think I probably look like her at work most of the time…)

        • Calibrachoa :

          I went to a convention earlier this year where an attendee had a service dog – and when the dog went off duty, there was practically a queue for puppy love. I feel like that doggo was the real star of the show.

      • On the flip side, I know plenty of working dogs that people have tried to keep as “pure” pets who are miserable, bored, and destructive. Maybe this is my background having grown up on a farm, but I think many animals who have historically been bred to work are much happier if they have a job. Of course there’s a balance, and what’s right for one animal isn’t right for all animals–but I remember when I was adopting my late husky, the rescue spent a lot of time quizzing me on how I was going to get her energy out, because it’s a breed that they saw such a high return rate for. They’re bred to want to work; they have a lot of energy; and if you don’t give them a job, they’ll find one.

        • +1 like a border collie in an apartment. Some breeds need to work.

        • This. Many service dogs would be miserable sitting at home waiting for their owners all day long.

          I’m from the part of Canada that includes Labrador. Labradors have been bred to be working dogs ever since the breed has existed. They chew through everything when they are bored.

        • True. A good friend of mine adopted a one-year-old “rejected” German shepherd without really knowing what she was getting herself into. The irresponsible breeder told her the dog was too “soft” for real work. (The dog’s father was a famous police dog.) When the dog was around two years old, he behaved very aggressively to a man passing by on the street. To my friend’s credit, she took the dog to a trainer. Apparently, the dog was actually very well-trained, but (a) knew his commands in German, which my friend didn’t know, and (b) was bored and unhappy. That started a several years’ hobby of training with her dog, including agility courses, tracking courses, and bite work. Fortunately, she never had any other problems with her dog being aggressive.

        • Hound Person :

          Yes! I have a hound and get so frustrated with people who rehome after they’ve been told that THIS IS A WORKING DOG. It needs a job.

      • I think that’s just her Black Lab face. My lab always looks and serious, and he has a pretty spectacular life.

        • ++1 a lab will look you at you with That Face and swear up and down that he is mistreated, underfed, never played with, and unloved. Do not trust That Face. He is actually loved and catered to and pampered beyond belief.
          Signed, a lab lover

          • Heartbroken :

            I lost my 11 year old lab last week. This made me smile.

          • That’s my favorite face that my lab makes. She makes it most frequently after doing something mischevous, too! My husband actually sent me the article and said, “the dog looks so sweet!!!!” (he’s a softie :)

        • +2. My lab mix can spend hours at the dog park, (ours is a huge 60 acre forest preserve) running with friends and investigating smells and practicing commands, basically having the time of his life. Within 5 minutes of getting back, he will cuddle up and act like he’s been neglected for his entire life, then fall asleep on my lap. Like RBF, we call it “Neglected Puppy Face” and he is a PRO.

      • I don’t think they let the drug or bomb sniffing dogs who are bad at the job keep doing the job. So I wouldn’t worry about it.

        • Anonymous :

          Enjoyment and doing something well aren’t the same thing, especially for dogs. Lots of dogs are obedient and will do anything you tell them to. It doesn’t mean they’re happy.

  21. I have pretty thick skin, except when it comes to people I really like and admire. I am also really good at not taking things personally. However, this is proving to be a problem with a more senior associate that I’m working with.

    Sr. Associate has really liked me (their own words) since I was a summer and they’ve looped me in to lots of interesting work, always being amazing by explaining things thoroughly and legitimately trying to make me look good or impressive to the partners.

    I finally got staffed on a small project that was just the two of us and I was so excited to learn more and do good work. It’s basically been a disaster (probably a little exaggeration, but not much). I waited too long to request some things we needed and we were really close to the wire. Many of the things were new to me and I should have been much more careful (lesson well learned after all that has happened), but it was just one of those “anything that can go wrong did go wrong” things. I missed some “new to me” things that were caught upon the Sr. Associate’s review, but also managed to make really stupid mistakes like reviewing something and miss typos, etc. It feels like at this point we just both want this project to be done. Any time I set out to do a part of this project well, something happens and I still make a mistake. It’s like a horrible loop, haha.

    We had a good talk after the first big mistake about how this was a great lesson, etc. and they’ve been SO gracious, but I can’t help but read a million things into any kind of communication or question or email they send me now. I do think they were frustrated by what happened and understandably so, but it seriously feels like their opinion of me went way down and while I think there might be other factors going on in their life, it feels like all of the frustration they seem to be experiencing when we interact is because of me and my work on this project.

    I guess I just needed to vent, but also just some encouragement/advice. This Sr. Associate is the rockstar not just in our group, but the firm, and I felt incredibly lucky to be taken under their wing. Now, I’m just trying to avoid running into them anywhere and feel like an idiot any time they’re around. I would love to follow in Sr. Associate’s career path, but this has been so discouraging and I feel like I will never at that level. Sr. Associate is obviously not going anywhere and has the best work and great teaching style, so I want to work with them long-term.

    It’s also made me enjoy my job a lot less because I feel like I am incapable of not making mistakes.

    (For background: My firm/office is a lot smaller than most posters here (still biglaw), so interpersonal relationships really play a huge role in things. We staff leanly and get tons of hands on experience early on.)

    • 1. You are probably being harder on yourself than necessary. I’ve been the Sr Associate in this person’s shoes, and I’ve certainly have junior associates screw things up early on that I now consider my go-tos. Everyone screws up.
      2. Be proactive (at the right moment, like after you reach a milestone) about setting up a feedback session — this shows the Sr Associate you are serious about improving and working with him or her and actually does help everyone learn for the future. Don’t be defensive, but also don’t apologize too much — there is a way to acknowledge your mistakes and seek advice on improving without putting yourself down, so try to practice this ahead of time even if it feels awkward.

    • Your experience happens to almost all junior associates at firms where you get meaningful experience. It’s a lesson for the senior person as much as you in terms of how much direction they really need to give. Don’t hide, you have a good relationship so keep that up, ask questions, stay engaged. This is really really normal and common.

    • I’m a senior associate and work with juniors all the time. Mistakes happen. Even my best junior associates makes mistakes. Don’t be too hard on yourself. If senior associate knows you do good work they will remember that too even though there have been mistakes. Remember also that the senior associate likely has lots of cases on their plate and so your mistakes probably don’t stand out to them in the way they do to you.

      Try and think about all the things you did well on the project and past projects if you aren’t feeling confident. Think about all the things that you can do today that you couldn’t do 6 months ago. That is the progress that matters and will allow you to grow into a rockstar senior associate.

    • Oh my gosh please chill! You are fine, you’re a totally normal junior associate. This senior associate is not the messiah.

    • I literally just had a junior associate that I think highly of screw something up massively, so I have fresh experience in terms of being on the supervisor’s end of this situation. First, have you had a sit-down about this? It can help to just grab a few minutes to say “Look, this didn’t go as well as I would have liked – I made some mistakes and that won’t happen again. I also realized that I need to ask for more direction on x/y/z things when I’m not necessarily clear on the right approach.” Or something along those lines – whatever is appropriate for your specific situation. In an ideal world, the senior associate would initiate that conversation, but if she hasn’t, it’s worthwhile for you to initiate it and it doesn’t have to be a Big Deal.

      Beyond that, it’s easy to get in what I call the “f-up shame spiral,” where you are so worried about making mistakes that you keep making mistakes. Take a deep breath, remind yourself that this is one project and that you are generally good at your job, and try not to let that worry have a foothold in your head.

    • “It’s also made me enjoy my job a lot less because I feel like I am incapable of not making mistakes.”

      The secret is, this is literally true for every single person. You can try to minimize them, and you can learn to how to handle them when they blow up in your face, but you can’t avoid them.

      • This is so true. OP, you *are* incapable of not making mistakes. Same with literally every person in the world.

      • +1 You absolutely can not avoid mistakes. They will happen. What you can avoid is making the same mistakes. Learn from what went wrong and try to implement a system to avoid them in the future. But attempting to avoid them all together is foolishness.

    • Not in law, but I do have quite a few direct reports. They all screw something up at some point. My opinion of them going forward is at least 95% based on how they handle the error (both in terms of reporting/fixing the error, and changing things so it doesn’t happen again). The only time the original error really factors in to my opinion of them is if it reveals a deep character flaw (like scaring off a client by making a racist remark, or having an article retracted because of deliberately faking data). It seems funny, but the magnitude of the consequences of the error mean very little to me compared to why it occurred and how it was handled.

    • I echo what everyone else has said. My out of the gate story was similar in Big4 but I unfortunately worked with a terrible team and was scapegoated. After 2 weeks I was kicked off the project. I seem to recall hearing “limited understanding of basic principles”. Flash forward several years later and I’m a partner at the same firm I found my nitch and have done well after the initial setback. I’m also so much more patient with new staff given my history. It sucked at the time and I’m so sorry you’re going through it but you’ll be fine – this won’t define you. I think everyone hits bumps when they’re first starting.

      • And you probably, in some small part, became a partner by being an effective manager. and you are probably an effective manager because of your experience – what happen, how it was handled, and how to handle and not handle a similar situation going forward.

  22. Ditch the microwave? :

    Looking for input from anyone who does not have a microwave in their kitchen. I’m moving into an apartment unit that’s handicap accessible, so the normally built-in microwave is on the counter, taking up some prime real estate in a tiny kitchen. The leasing office said that most tenants give the microwave back to maintenance and either get a smaller one or don’t use one at all. So now I’m considering life microwave-free. I think I could do without it for everything except for making quick baked potatoes and popcorn. I also occasionally heat up this rice-filled thing for my neck and I’m not sure I’d feel comfortable putting that in the oven/toaster. Anyone have any input?

    • Can you put it on top of the fridge and only take it down as needed?

      • In the house we just sold, our microwave was on top of the fridge. We had it plugged in up there and never took it down to use it. We didn’t use it a lot so it really wasn’t a big deal.

        • Yes, mine is on top of my fridge and it’s great. I just have to stand on my tiptoes to use it.

    • Duchess of Cambridge :

      I don’t have a microwave at all, you can heat and reheat most things without it – albeit i do barely eat baked potatoes unless I have time to cook them in the oven! Stove top popcorn works great. Could you go back to a traditional hot water bottle filled by an electric kettle (I’m in the UK so know that these are more common over here than they are stateside).

    • Veronica Mars :

      Electric heating pad to replace your rice neck thing. For the microwave, I would get a small one and place it on a shelf in your kitchen (if you don’t have shelves, install some basic ones). For extra counter space, get a baker’s rack (container store has an awesome one) or make sure your kitchen table is counter height so you can use it as a prep space.

    • I don’t have a microwave, and do just fine. I don’t eat microwave popcorn — you can make popcorn on the stove. If I want baked potatoes, I put them in the oven and set the timer to have them done and waiting for me when I get home.

    • I use my microwave mainly to melt butter and things like that so I could live without it. Even though we have one, we don’t pop corn in it. I think corn popped on the stove is SO much better.

      Put oil in deep pan with lid. Put one popcorn kernel in the middle. Heat oil until kernel pops. Then pour in 1/4 cup of kernels and put lid on. Shake pan occasionally until popping slows. Voila, popcorn.

      I personally just like it salted but you could pour melted butter over at this point. Much better than the powdered diacetyl cocktail they put in those packets (google popcorn lung)

      • Have not had a microwave for 3 years. Heat up leftovers in frying pan or in oven. A toaster over might be useful but I don’t have that either. I make stovetop popcorn and use an electric heating pad, as others have mentioned.

        • toaster oven, not toaster over

        • Baconpancakes :

          Team Toaster Oven. So much better for heating up almost all leftovers. I do use the microwave for steaming slightly stale cooked rice back into deliciousness, though I think you can just restrain the rice on the stove as well.

    • BabyAssociate :

      Totally doable. I lived for years (maybe 5?) without a microwave. I do have one now, but honestly rarely use it.

    • I don’t have one either and very rarely miss it. We have to warn housesitters though, people are sometimes taken aback.

    • Microwave free for 3 years now I think. It’s great and easy. I am also coffee maker free and toaster free! I use my oven a lot. I think it helps I cook from scratch so there isn’t any “instant” anything to heat up in the microwave. You learn tricks like cooking a double batch of rice so you can do curry one night and stir fry the next. I always bake my potatoes I like the crispy skin and I make my popcorn in a pot with a lid.

    • A microwaveless life :

      I like my microwave but lived without one for a while. You’ve had good advice on popcorn and the neck pad; I can also offer that baked potatoes can apparently be done in a crock pot, if you have one (I know it’s not quick, but assuming you can throw a few in before work, they should be done after, so less waiting around for you). I use the microwave a lot for leftovers and I agree with the above poster(s) that things can mostly be reheated on the stovetop. You’ll figure out the best system for various things over time, but I found that a sauce pan with a little water in it plus the relevant leftover was often a good choice (the water helped prevent sticking and drying out).

    • Triangle Pose :

      Don’t have a microwave and haven’t had one for 2 years. Heating pad for the neck (or a plug in massager), popcorn poppwer for popcorn (or stovetop, but I like getting the perfect popcorn from my popcorn maker). The only downside (upside?) if no more frozen burritos. Which is probably a good thing.

    • I lived without a microwave for a long time and then finally got one a couple of years ago. I’ll never go back. Sure, you can easily live without one. But they’re soooo nice to have. I wouldn’t give it up if I were you.

    • Rainbow Hair :

      I haven’t had a microwave for a decade. I heat up food on the stove or in the toaster oven, and I luxuriate in my counter space. Pizza is better when it’s heated in the toaster oven anyway.

      The one thing I miss is heating up those rice heating pads for your neck or whatever. But I live.

    • coffee bean :

      Haven’t had a microwave in 3ish years and very rarely miss it. Melting butter on the stove isn’t as big of a deal as I expected, and heating leftovers on the stove or oven takes a bit longer but really isn’t terrible. I’ve thought about getting a microwave and putting it in the basement (kitchen counter space is my issue also) but it’s never really been a priority.

    • Anonymous :

      Working in a microwave-free restaurant stocked with home appliances, we relied heavily on iron skillets for slowly rewarding leftovers.

  23. I know there are a fair number of readers here who are from NYC but settled in DC or who are from elsewhere but have had job opportunities in NYC. How did you make the NYC vs. DC decision? Left NYC about 2 yrs ago and I was so over it – the lifestyle, COL etc. Now 2 yrs later though, I am really iffy about DC and wondering if I should make a move back to NYC. What factors led you to stay or go? Esp. interested if kids/schools weren’t an issue for you bc you’re child free or your kids are really young or over 18.

    • Split the difference and move to Philly instead :) You will feel like you can live like a queen here compared to NYC!

      • I’m from Philly and have considered it. The job situation is rough though (in law) and I feel like I don’t really fit in as everyone I went to HS with is 35, married with a house and 3+ kids. At least in DC/NYC you have a lot of people who are single and working constantly so you’re not viewed as weird if that’s your life stage.

        • Gotcha. I am in law too, and was not aware that it was a particularly tough area to break into if you have ties to the city. Maybe worth a try! It’s true that people tend to settle down here, so I hear you on that front. If you are interested in settling down, it might be easier to do it here than in NYC/DC, where I’ve heard the dating scene is rough.

          • Triangle Pose :

            In law in Philly and love it here. But I do think the dating scene is rough – my SO lateralled here from DC and we already knew each other when I came here so it was easier for me but my dingle girlfriends who are lawyers seem to have a hard time. But nothing beats being able to live like a queen, COE and the ability to build wealth is nice.

        • Just a quick comment to say I’m sure you could find a new circle of friends whose lives are more like yours than your high school friends!

    • Anonymous :

      I’m on team Philly! (I’ve actually lived in NYC, DC and Philly) BUT – I also once read an article which said it can take up to 5 years to really feel at home in a new city, so depending on what it is you don’t like about DC you might want to give it a bit more time. Also, try to figure out if it is DC itself that you don’t like or if there are other things in your life bothering you that wouldn’t necessarily change no matter where you live. Or also think about what exactly it is that you miss about New York.

  24. Anyone have a similar experience? Had a wisdom tooth out 10-12 days ago — had to be done suddenly due to infection and then there was bleeding after. I am wiped out. I’m 37 — and a 100 lb weakling. Shouldn’t I be bouncing back faster?? Seems to be healing just fine and now I’m eating again yet so tired — is it the antibiotics + days of minimal food? And I am now also borderline anemic — was always on the border of low iron but it was fine but had bloodwork done and this tipped me over; thyroid was also checked and it’s fine. What to do besides eating red meat/eating well and sleeping a lot?

    • Rest + eating well is pretty much it.

      If you find chewing red meat hard, try smoothies – spinach for iron + citrus for iron absorption

    • Red meat, boost shakes, gain some weight.

    • I recently had a tough time getting my energy back after an illness and found that non-strenuous walks outdoors were helpful.

      • Diana Barry :

        Take iron daily and also a stool softener. The iron makes you constipated so you have to counteract that. (I lost a lot of blood when I had my first child and it took about a month for my body to feel like I wasn’t super exhausted all the time from the loss of blood.)

    • It took me a long time to recover from having my wisdom teeth (all 4) removed when I was 21. It was probably 2-3 weeks before I could eat normally again. I think the surgery is rougher than people let on.

  25. Bathroom Vanity :

    Best place to buy a bathroom vanity? I learned about JC Penney’s curtain selection through the Hive (thanks!), so hoping that I can find some new and/or previously unconsidered places to browse.

    • A stand alone vanity or one that houses your sink?

      • Bathroom Vanity :

        One that houses my sink.

        • So basically Home Depot or places like that. But if you are crafty you can buy an antique nightstand or dresser and fit it with a sink and plumbing. Depends on your style. I like the look.

    • Wayfair!

    • Here’s a great roundup of vanities from all over the internet. There are sooo many more options than just Home Depot!

      https://stylebyemilyhenderson.com/blog/68-readymade-bath-vanities?doing_wp_cron=1508515751.9041979312896728515625

    • Once you find one you like (look at Wayfair, Overstock, Home Depot, Birchlane, etc.), google the item number to compare prices. I found a vanity I loved at Wayfair for over $2,000. My contractor told me to google the item number, and I found the same exact vanity on sale at Walmart for $900!!

  26. Duchess of Cambridge :

    I don’t have a microwave at all, you can heat and reheat most things without it – albeit i do barely eat baked potatoes unless I have time to cook them in the oven! Stove top popcorn works great. Could you go back to a traditional hot water bottle filled by an electric kettle (I’m in the UK so know that these are more common over here than they are stateside).

    • Duchess of Cambridge :

      Obviously didn’t mean to post this here – definitely glad it’s Friday!

      • But imagine if the real Duchess of Cambridge simply popped by her favorite fashion b l o g to tell us that she doesn’t use a microwave!

  27. Ugh. Another rape of a Carondelet girl by a De la Salle boy (Bay Area high schools) and apparently the “problem”, according to a De La Salle parent who was interviewed for the story, is that the Carondelet girls are now reporting these things.

    • Ugh, I heard stories about this in college (went to school with close links to both, go gaels). What is wrong with parents? Sitting here with my infant son in my arms and wondering how to counter these toxic messages about masculinity and relationships.

      • Still, all men :

        We should be asking what’s wrong with parents, we should all be examining ourselves and our peers and they way we are still continuing to raise males. It’s distressing.

    • this really bums me out as a childless, millennial 30 year old – because it tells me that we STILL SOMEHOW are not teaching boys to rape women. if these kids are in high school, then I assume (maybe wrongly?) that the offending parents are around Gen-X or Y or Millennial age, whatever.

      this gives me no hope that we’re going to stop violence against women anytime soon. What are you ladies doing to mold these new generations of men? How can we do better when raising children??? I obviously don’t have answers, and it is frustrating.

      • Triangle Pose :

        No answeres here. Feels hopeless. My personal answer is staying childfree.

      • Mother of girls :

        I don’t know whether there’s any evidence to this approach (and my older child is only in kindergarten), but I try to encourage her to be friends with boys. I figure that the more children can see the opposite gender as people and friends, then maybe they’ll do better at NOT looking at the girls as prey and better at protecting their friends from the predators.

        • Yes, I try to consistently send the message to both my son and daughter (and together so they see it applies to both of them), that they have control over their own bodies and must give consent and receive consent before someone touches them or they touch someone else. We have had the “private parts are private” talk, but we also try to give this message outside of any kind of s3xual context–you don’t have to hug and kiss your dad’s weird Aunt. You do have to say hello and be polite, but you do not have to let anyone touch you, no matter who it is. Even in more playful situations too–they sometimes roughhouse with each other, but have to ask first if the other wants to play and not just go jump on the other one. (Which someone once told me takes all the fun out of wrestling with your siblings, but that is ok with me, haha). I do give them spontaneous hugs which I sometimes wonder if that undercuts the message, but I hope the overall balance is one of bodily integrity, respect, and learning what it looks like to ask for and to give consent in an empowering way.

  28. Can I rant for a minute about how terrible Lord & Taylor’s website is? They make it nearly impossible to place an online order — the site is incredibly slow, does not load properly, difficult to filter. I should not need to spend 20 minutes to make a stupid order. UGH. The website has been like that for years. Reaffirms my decision to only shop at Nordstrom for clothes.

    • Yes, except for the great ponte pants they have in the Lord and Taylor store brand

    • I ordered shoes from Lord & Taylor last Thursday morning on next day air. I needed them for a wedding on Saturday and didn’t receive them until this past Wednesday. So I paid for next day air shipping and now I’ll have to pay to ship them back. First time and now last time Lord & Taylor customer.

    • I’m right there with you! I bought a pair of their Design Lab boots that were described as leather… get them and they are polyurethane. I emailed to return them as I was so disappointed. They sent me a return label so I sent them back… got the confirmation email today “We’ve received the notebook you returned!” NO. I will NEVER shop with Lord and Taylor again, strictly Barneys/Nordstrom for me. *mad face*

    • Anon prof :

      NPR had a story this morning that Lord & Taylor was going to have Walmart run its website. This seems 1) bizarre, since how much do those customer bases overlap, and 2) Walmart’s website is terrible.

  29. Recruiter Tutor :

    Advice needed re: how to handle a recruiter.
    Applied for and did two rounds of interviews for a job (I’m a PA). Recruiter asked early in the process what my salary expectation was, and I gave her a realistic range (backed up by industry data, what I was previously getting paid, and advice from my previous boss). I had many questions regarding benefits that were either slow to be answered or weren’t answered at all. All of my interviews were held offsite. I had to ask if I could see the clinical area that I would be working in and was quite shocked to see only one exam room, a poorly stocked supply closet, and a terrible patient flow (non-dedicated patient waiting area). Recruiter gave me a verbal offer, which included a salary that is about 18% off the mark, and I told her that we were very far apart on salary and went over my expectations again (citing the data, parlaying it with my experience, etc). I also asked for a written offer that detailed out the salary and addressed the benefits questions I had.

    Simultaneously I was offered a better position at a different facility that pays slightly above the range I was asking for, has better benefits than the other job, and the clinical setup was what I expected.

    I received the written offer from job A which included only the lowball salary and didn’t address any of my questions. I sent the recruiter a polite but direct email yesterday stating that while I appreciated the opportunity to meet with the team, I’ve decided not to move forward with the position. I didn’t get into details about either the other opportunity I have or all the concerns that came up during my interview / site visit. Recruiter sends an email today wanting to know if she can “negotiate a better salary on my behalf”. I find this sort of odd, I feel totally competent about negotiating my own salary (and wonder if her approach is some kind of meaningful tactic that I’m not aware of?) but even if they did come up on salary I still am not interested in the job.

    Question: Do I “owe” her a response? Should I list out my concerns? Or just ignore the email?

    • No, I’ve accepted a different position that is a better fit.

    • I would reply thanks but no thanks I’ve already made my decision to go with another offer in hand at/above the range offered, and leave it at that. You’ve given her enough info (their salaries are terrible) to do something with internally, but you stuck to the facts.

  30. Happy Friday everyone. My office instituted jeans Friday so I’m wearing “skinny” jeans (quotes necessary because I’m far from skinny) and a long cardigan. What are you wearing?

    • Same outfit. #twins.

    • Baconpancakes :

      Dark jeans, untucked black longish polyester button down, black knee high flat boots, but I’m at a conference.

    • Seattle Freeze :

      A complete mishmash of an outfit chosen exclusively for warmth: grey tank under an army green cashmere sweater, grey track pants with fleecy innards, handknit wool socks, and a black/floral padded jacket. I’m still cold! (and working from home, as if it weren’t obvious)

    • Black BR sloan pants, black ankle boots, green blouse, brown peplum leather jacket, minimalist longline earrings and watch. Hidden corgi socks complete the Friday look.

    • Old Navy Pixie Longs in a banana leaf print (I’m in denial about fall…), a gold reptile belt and gold reptile pointy toe skimmer flats, and a deep emerald green Loft Utility blouse, with that half front tuck thing going on. Pearl studs and a gold engraved word necklace. Feeling jazzy.

    • Black skinnies, a half-tucked white and black wide windowpane loose- fitting button-down, blush moto jacket, white chucks.

    • Dark skinny jeans, black silk/cashmere crew sweater, pearl/ruby earrings. This is fancier than I usually dress on Fridays in my casual office but I’m going out after work.

    • Rainbow Hair :

      Today’s outfit is lazy. Dark green ankle pants that I really should part with, because they stretch out. But they’re easy to put on in the morning and my legs are covered with mosquito bites. And a black tee shirt with my work logo on it. I like it – long sleeves, v-neck, cut for a woman. I mean, it’s still a ridiculous work tee, but it’s also easy to wear and doesn’t make me look as ridiculously busty as the men’s crew neck ones.

    • On the road. Wearing a navy dress with black heels, due to a packing mishap. My only other option is black leopard tennies I wore on the plane.

  31. The Limited is back!!!

  32. PSA: The Limited is back with a small-ish collection! I didn’t see anything I was crazy about, but my office is more casual.

    • But no petite sized clothing… Boo!!! I just so happen to be wearing a Limited blouse from a year ago today. In a petite XS.

  33. DH has been in a brutal 110 hr / week job and is finally ready to move on now that he’s hit a work anniversary.

    By nature, I’m a planner and uncertainty makes me a little anxious. He wants to quit his job before lining something else up. He says he is so burned out he doesn’t have the mental capacity or time to think about job hunting while also doing this job. I want to be supportive, but this is making me freak out a little internally. It’s almost November, which means holidays are coming and I feel like hiring slows down. While we could survive if he didn’t have income until 2018, it would feel like a self-inflicted hit to our emergency stash and savings.

    Has anyone had any experience with this? I know you’re not supposed to quit without something else lined up. Are there cases where it’s ok? Has it worked out well/terribly for anyone here?

    I want to be supportive, but sole earner + new mom who is still pumping etc and trying to find my own balance is making me nervous.

    • Can he dial his effort/time back at work (without burning bridges) in order to have more time to decompress/job hunt? If he is really working 100+ hours a week, it’s understandable that he has no energy to do anything else, let alone job hunt. Can you help him with any of the job hunting?

    • It seems reasonable to me to ask him to stay at this job and try to look through the end of the year, and quit in January if he needs to.

    • Realistically he can’t find a new job working 110+ hour weeks. That work schedule barely allows time to sleep, much less look for something new. Unless someone just walks up to him and drops a new job in his lap, which is unlikely, he needs time to look. Plus y’all have plenty of emergency savings it sounds like. In this case, I don’t think he has a choice but to quit first.

    • If he does quit, I think there needs to be a clear expectation that he leans in at home in order to reduce your stress as sole earner. He takes care of shopping/cooking/cleaning/night wakings etc.

      I would be open to him quitting without something lined up but be careful with the timing. Not a lot of companies are hiring right before Christmas and there often a lot of people looking after year end bonuses come out.

    • Can he take some vacation/personal time/mental health sick leave right now? Immediately?

      A weekend is coming…. can he at least be home to sleep, and then discuss?

      Sounds like he is a hard worker, responsible. I suspect he will work hard to get a new job too, yes?

      Many quit without something lined up. Sometimes it is the only way. Think of how nice it might be to have a “stay at home Dad” for a few weeks/months. Might be a god-send actually….

      It will work out.

    • “Not supposed to” is not a hard and fast rule. Gently, how do you think he’s going to find a new job if he’s working 100 hours/week? This is the kind of thing savings are for.

      • Struggling a little bi because I was hoping he could lean significantly out. He’s not the kind of person who ever does the bare minimum, but I was hoping some boundaries like turning off the work computer at 8pm would be possible and give him some time to at least put some feelers out. He doesn’t want to do that because the work he avoids will slide down to teammates. I love how much he cares about other people but ugh anxiety

        • Anonymous :

          So he’s okay putting the imposition on you (as the sole provider), but not pushing on to his team (or talking to his manager about the need for more headcount everyone’s not working 15 hr days non-stop).

          I’m not impressed how he puts other people’s well-being first at the expense of his family’s, vs standing up for what he needs (as a person, or a parent) – because he’s doing that already (even before quitting), but essentially making you a solo-parent (right?).

      • +1 I know from experience it is really hard to focus on job hunting and interviews when you’re working crazy hours.

    • Sounds like he deserves a break! :

      I am your husband. If he is working that hard, he must be a high earner right? Have you guys been stashing money away to cover a burnout recovery period like he wants/needs? If not, why not? How can you slash expenses so he doesn’t have to work the equivalent of 3 full-time jobs to support your joint lifestyle? If he is literally contributing that much more than you are to the household, seems to me that he has earned some grace…but one has to prepare.

      Can he invent a minor surgery that requires him to be on bed rest for a week? Family medical emergency?

      Signed,
      Another human trapped in a crazy demanding job, except my partner cares about my well-being and is practically begging me to quit and relax for a while…because money is way less important than health.

      • Anonymous :

        But she’s a new mom as well so while he’s working crazy hours, she is basically stuck single parenting. That’s an enormous burden. She deserves a break as well, not adding financial stress on top of her current situation.

    • 1 in SAHD column :

      Oh man, get thee a SAHD while he’s looking. You can’t always plan out the way life works–my husband took 8 months off to follow me to my new job. I LOVED having a SAHD as a partner. Sure, it was tighter financially, but I wasn’t called out of work for a sick kid, or finding childcare when things fell through, or waiting for the plumber, or fighting with an exhausted third grader to do homework at 6:30 when he finally get home for the day. With a newborn, you don’t have homework, but you do have a lot of laundry, feedings, etc. Embrace it, I say.

      Nothing has been harder as a working parent than when my husband is deployed. It’s work and parenting, and that sounds like where you are logistically with his current work hours.

  34. So all the #metoo posts have me thinking about something I have been mulling over for several years. My own #metoo story involves my father who I have not seen since I was 5 years old (for what should be obvious reasons). Unfortunately not many people outside of my mom’s family believed me, so he went on to remarry and have at least one more daughter who also became a victim.

    What I want to ask you all– and what I haven’t gotten myself to talk to anyone else about– is whether you would contact your half sister if you were me? I managed to find her through some internet sleuthing, even though she lives a couple states away. In some ways I feel like it would just bring us both pain, but at the same time she is my sister and I might be the one person in the world who really understands what she went through. I think she’s about 19 or 20 and is in college by her public info and I am 30, if that matters.

    Another complicating issue is that I have another sister (same mom and dad) who has never met our dad– my mom left him while pregnant. Should I tell her that I know who our half sister is? I think my sister would be really interested because she’s always been curious about that side of herself but has had not contact with that part of her family.

    • I would contact her, share your story and let her know that you’re there for her if she would like to connect. I would try not to let your experiences with your father define your relationship with her. Be clear that even if she doesn’t want to discuss what happened to her, or hear about what happened to you, that you would like to have a relationship (assuming this is true).

      Depending on where she is in dealing with it, she may be grateful to reach out for the support or she may be in a place where she doesn’t want to deal with it at all, will keep your contact info and you’ll hear from her in five years.

      • I disagree. As a person who has gone no-contact with a parent for less awful reasons, I would never want a long-lost half-sister to contact me for any reason, whether to form a “relationship” or to discuss past trauma. If you never had a relationship with this person before, your only connection to her is genetic, and that’s not a good enough reason to intrude upon her life.

        • That’s too bad. You could be missing out on a great family member. One of my law school classmates was contacted by an older half sister after their Dad died of cancer. She had no clue the older half-sister existed although apparently the older half-sister knew of her. They don’t live in the same city but they visit each other regularly and have a great relationship. Older half – sister doesn’t have much of a relationship with their brother but he also struggled in his relationship with the Dad and isn’t close to any family.

        • I mean, there’s different levels of contact. A 10 page letter full of stories, photos, news clippings, and begging you to get in touch? Not cool. But a concise email, saying “If you’re up for it, I’d love to get in touch – here’s my contact info” with no follow-up unless the person takes action seems perfectly within reasonable bounds to me.

          • ^^^^ I would do this. Contact, here’s how to get in touch with me. Leave it at that. Not like a mystery, but as close to what you had before (nothing) as possible but with the door open, and the ball in her court.

            Sorry a lot of bad metaphors. You get the gist.

  35. Does anyone have a rec for a drugstore eyeliner that won’t budge from my waterline? I have been using one from Physicians Formula but for the last two I’ve bought, they’ve either been old or they changed the formula – the eyeliner doesn’t “write” on my waterline anymore (too hard?)

    I need it to not budge – I’m a crier.

    • Try the Wet N’ Wild Mega Liquid Liner

    • The ONLY eyeliner that doesn’t budge from my water line is Marc Jacobs’ eyeliner. There’s absolutely no drugstore equivalent. You could try your luck with Maybelline’s or Loreal’s gel eyeliners that come in a pot.

    • lawsuited :

      I use the MUFE aqua eyeliner (developed for synchronized swimmers) in my waterline but there is no drugstore equivalent.

  36. Tall blouses :

    I am in desperate need of some new tops for work to go under suits or to stand alone. I find that most blouses at places like Ann Taylor are just a bit too short for me. Any suggestions for places that carry longer tops or a specific top that you like that is cut long?

    • Lands End has a lot of tops in tall size, as well as many regular size tunics that are quite long.

      • Anonymous :

        As someone who buys Talls as Lands End, I would say the length of sleeve/shirt is on par with regular sizes at BR. So, they’re kind of tall, but not really that tall.

  37. Try the Wet N’ Wild Mega Liquid Liner

  38. SouthofBoston :

    Does anyone know the name of the Facebook group where readers of this site sell clothes? I have an Isabella Oliver maternity suit to sell.

  39. Anonymous :

    For those that got married for the tax savings… how much tax savings made you pull the trigger? Fiance and I don’t have a date set yet but it will likely be in 2019… However because we’re domestic partners (I’m on his health insurance) we’re paying about 2k extra in tax each year. We’re thinking of secretly getting married now because we could really use the extra 4k. However, I realize a divorce would easily cost more than 4k.

    • Do people actually do that?

      • For most people, marriage gets you a tax penalty, not a benefit, so getting married for tax purposes is not common, but I know people who have postponed marriage because of the tax penalty, so yeah it’s something people consider. I actually have a friend who chose not to legally marry her spouse because of the marriage penalty. They had a giant wedding and hold themselves out as a married couple (refer to each other was husband/wife etc.) but apparently they just never signed a marriage license so they file taxes as single people. I personally think it’s shady as all get out (and I remember reading a case in tax law that this basically fraud and you can have to pay penalties), but it is something that some people do.

    • Anonymous :

      I suggesting using one of these tools to see if you would experience the marriage tax penalty or bonus.

      http://www.taxpolicycenter.org/interactive-tools/marriage-bonus-and-penalty-tax-calculator

    • Anonymous :

      What tax savings? Unless one partner doesn’t earn anything or earns far less than the other, you are likely to get slammed with the marriage penalty.

      • Senior Attorney :

        Yeah this seems backwards to me!

      • Yeah from what I recall from tax class, the ‘savings’ is only when it’s like $25k/year salary marrying a $5M/year salary. My husband makes 3x what I do and we still got hit with the penalty.

        • Yup, the year we got married my husband made around $50k and I made around $175k. We had to write the IRS an enormous check. I always thought it really only benefits couples where one spouse stays home or works part time and earns very little (maybe less than $25k per year or so?). If you have two earners over about $50k, I think you’re going to get slammed, even if the incomes aren’t very equal.

    • Why would you get married in secret if you want to get married earlier…? Just get married earlier if you want to?

      • Agree – just get married in late 2018 if you want to save a little money. I also wouldn’t assume it would save you anything. It def cost me $$$ in taxes to get married.

    • I know someone who got legally married before their family wedding and reception for health insurance reasons (this was many years ago). About three months before the date of their religious wedding the bride broke it off. It’s rough on both of them that she did so then, but better than entering a marriage you’re that unsure of. Unfortunately, they were already married and had to get divorced. If you plan on a civil wedding please give yourself a few weeks to cool off before you do it. I hate to be a Debbie Downer but a lot of engagements are never fulfilled.

    • I have had friends who got married legally (city hall) for a couple of reasons, in one case so the wife could join her husband’s insurance (at the time no domestic partner available) and in the other so the wife could immigrate with her husband, who was moving countries to do a post-doc. In both cases it wasn’t a secret, but they had a biggish wedding to celebrate with friends and family about a year later. I do think you should run the taxes to see how it works out for you, but there are definitely scenarios where it makes sense.

    • Anonymous :

      Would you really save money getting married? Unless one of you makes WAY more than the other one does, you would likely pay more. It was BRUTAL the year we got married, I think we owed the IRS something like $20k and we are not super high earners (combined income at the time was around $200k).

    • I should clarify.. (also tax was my worst class in law school so I may be thinking about this incorrectly)… our taxes would be the same if we got married, we’ve run the numbers. However, because his company pays for my health insurance as a domestic partner, his imputed income is higher and puts him into a different tax bracket. I am paying the difference. It comes out to be about $2k that he (I) would pay.

      • Anonymous :

        I think $2000 (or $4000, whichever) is a (for the US) normal price for health insurance (because that’s really the only cost to you, right?) And it’s a silly amount to get married to avoid paying. I mean, you’d get married to avoid paying $166/$333 a month? I’m not going to get married to avoid paying bills I can afford. And I hope I never have to consider getting married to pay for bills that I *can’t* afford. So, I guess my answer is – tax savings is not the going to be a factor in deciding whether I would (or would not) get married.

      • Chicagoan :

        I’d review your understanding of the situation. As I understand it, insurance premiums are taken out of pre-tax income. So, if your insurance is costing $100/month then your partner’s income is reduced by $100/month, and his taxable income should go *down* an equivalent amount. This would not change if you were married. The amount that a company contributes to their employee’s health insurance is not reported on a W2 and no worker pays tax on it.

        • My understanding is what you said is true for him, but not true for me. The premiums paid for me are reported on his W2 as imputed income.

        • Also, premiums paid for spouses, rather than domestic partners, are not treated as imputed income. That’s why we would save money by getting married earlier than planned.

  40. Anonymous :

    I would be shocked if your taxes stayed the same. I would triple check that

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