Coffee Break: Bioelements Travel Kits

I just bought this myself — and what’s more, I was replacing empties, which I never happen to do. I got one of these little kits maybe a year or two ago, and I finally ran out of Sleepwear (described as an “overnight age activist creme for dry to combination skin”). Instead of buying the big size, I decided to get the Travel Light Kit, because for $49 it’s really affordable. If you have dry skin in the winter, I really recommend Sleepwear, and I also like two Bioelements eye products, the Multi-Task Eye Creme and Sleepwear for Eyes. You get free samples as well, so it’s a really good deal in my opinion. We have an upcoming post on the best places to get travel kits like this, so if you want to try things or need travel sizes, you can load up. (We’re researching that now — so, readers, please tell us your favorite places to get travel kits and small sizes of products you really like.) These are available at Amazon as well as at Bioelements for $20-$65. Bioelements Travel Kits

Note: The brand has reached out to us to note that “[M]ost sellers on Amazon are not authorized resellers of our products. We have no relationship with the unauthorized resellers and have no control over the products they sell. Therefore, while unauthorized products may be less expensive than products sold through authorized channels, they may not be safe.”



  1. Wall Decor :

    I have blank walls for days in my house. Where do I start? I’m ordering some canvas prints of pictures we’ve taken but I don’t want that to be the only thing we have around the house. Most pictures are of us (DHa nd I, no kids), our dog and/or our favorite outdoors-y hobby… think hiking. I don’t want our house to be hiking themed throughout! Where do you/I start?

    • I buy something whenever I travel – it makes a nice eclectic look all together. You might also pop in local art galleries and find some local artists you like to start out. You can always buy prints if you’re on a budget.

      • +1 to travel buys

        My house is filled with 3 categories of wall decorations: pictures, art I bought while traveling, and art made by my SO’s nieces and nephews. Probably 90% of it is pictures though.

      • MargaretO :

        +1 I think doing this slowly over time is what ends up looking best – better some blank space than something that too matchy matchy. Hang what you have now and see how it looks! I have picked stuff up traveling all over, and I also have some really cool art prints from various museums both local and from trips. I also have some old family photos (like grandparents as children, great great grandparents in the old country, etc.) and I love them. I would pay attention to adding texture – you don’t have to hang only photos or art prints, I have an arrangement of decorative plates in my dining room, some tapestries, a piece of art painted on wood, etc. If you have a giant empty wall or hallway you could install wall to wall bookshelves. I find varying textures is what makes a room look really “done”.

    • Anonymous :

      The public areas of our house are pretty much travel/landscape themed, but I only have one room (basement family room) that has a lot of travel photos on canvas. Several other rooms have art we’ve acquired while traveling, and my home office has a large, framed watercolor map of the world. Our guest bedroom has a watercolor of a landscape not far from our house that we acquired at our city’s local art fair (for a very reasonable price for original art – something like $60). Our master bedroom has a couple of canvas wedding photos – the only place enormous wedding photos should be displayed, imo.

    • Consider mirrors (either a series of small ones or one large piece), which have the added benefit of making rooms feel/look larger than they really are. I second the suggestion to bring back pieces when you travel. I also had a lot of luck finding more abstract art on Etsy (as a starting point, my favorite artist is Carolyn Finnell – if you Google her name you’ll find her shop). Prints from sites like Society 6 or Minted (huge selection) are also fun. I also love when people install floating shelves and display plants, smaller trinkets, books, etc. Don’t be afraid of white space, though! Give yourself some room to grow into your place and for your taste to evolve. You’re bound to come across things you love in a year or two and can end up having the reverse problem if you decorate too thoroughly at an early stage.

    • I’ve bought larger paintings at a local art market. It’s nice to support local artists and I have some interesting paintings and prints in my home. I also bought a frame thing that looks like a weathered window at World Market that holds 6 (I think) regular size printed photographs that I had printed in black and white to go with the weathered look.

    • Does your area have any open studio days? We did an afternoon of poking around local art studios, and then kept the catalog of artists. We’ve bought pieces from a couple of artists we discovered that way. We also visited a couple of low key galleries — local artists coops — and found someone else we like.

    • When I got divorced I redecorated my small house. I bought new furniture and new rugs and new wall art. I bought most of the wall art from Z Gallerie and Restoration Hardware. (here I’m rolling my eyes at myself)

      I hated the wall art within a year. I got rid of it over time and replaced it with something meaningful to me.

      I’m remarried with kids now 17 years later and my walls are finally full of items I really love.

      In hindsight, I’d rather just live with blank walls and collect things over time. Blank walls are nice!

      • Anonymous :

        Especially if the room is well-furnished and the walls are not white, blank walls really just don’t look that bad. Putting stuff up there just to have something in the space is likely to look worse than leaving it blank until you find a piece that is appropriately-sized and you have a connection to.

    • Rainbow Hair :

      I agree about travel and local galleries — and even just people you know (though pls don’t ask artists for a discount because they’re your friends)! Often the cool coffee shop / hair salon in town is hosting a show by a local artist, etc. etc. and you can support someone local and get something one of a kind. I’ve also bought prints by artists whose originals I fell in love with but couldn’t afford.

      Here are some examples of things I look at and feel happy about every damn day:
      — a rug we bought in morocco on our honeymoon; it hangs like a tapestry in our bedroom
      — a reproduction of a vintage cigarette ad we bought in china, framed
      — a poster showing one of my favorite landmarks in chicago, bought from the artist
      — a print of a painting we saw at a gallery and couldn’t afford — googled the artist, found her etsy, got a print!
      — a painting by my brother; a painting by my other brother (both feature technicolored women doing somewhat scandalous things, now that I think about it)
      — a painting my husband commissioned from a coworker for our first anniversary (not of us or anything, just the stuff that guy regularly painted)
      — a painting of a woman washing her hair that we bought in vietnam
      — some paintings of wild animals on black velvet that i love without any irony — picked them up at my favorite antique/junk store in my old neighborhood, and laugh to myself at how desperate i was to buy them before anyone else got them!

      Anyway, the point of that list is that everything *means* something to me, or has an origin story that makes me smile. They all sort of fit together stylistically because I like the things I like, and so nothing seems too out of place with anything else.

      If I had gobs of money I would spends gobs of it on art. I hope that you find some stuff you love!

    • Travel art, yes. I have also bought stuff from Ikea (a Matisse knockoff), posters or small framed pieces from art museums, and arty calendars that I cut up and framed. We also regularly do 3 photo frames of our 3 favorite photos from a trip, or frame postcards.

      I think it would be cool to do funky wallpaper in a frame, maybe a set of 3. I also have some arty (not artists, but creative) friends who buy canvases from Michael’s and just paint them with shapes or lines in colors they like and hang them up.

    • A temp fix could be an arc lamp, available at IKEA and Target for around $100. Plants could work that way too–in hanging pots suspended from the ceiling or climbing up trellises in containers on plant stands, or even indoor trees. Or you could get storage pieces now and place empty baskets in them, to use later on when you have stuff needing a place, or to be removed when you have more objects you want to display. I realize that none of these are actually on the wall, but they could each fill up some of that blank space with something visually interesting.

    • Apartment Therapy has tons of articles about this. Some are hokey, some are good.

      I get that you don’t the whole place to be “hiking” themed, but maybe a couple variations on that could work–vintage himing sticks, compasses and maps, pressed flowers or other finds from along the trail, or something not specifically “hiking” that points to what you like about your hobby.

      And I agree with others that blank =\= bad.

    • Wildkitten :

      I love putting up some Ikea ribba ledges so you can re-arrange art without re-hanging everything while you’re figuring out what all you like and want to have up.

  2. I threw money at it, ie, I bought a ‘wall styling’ package from minted. They gave me 3 options for the wall behind our master bed which is HUGE and I didn’t quite know what to do with. I really loved the prints the stylist picked out. You can either have them frame them, or DIY. Either way you get a 20% off coupon for any art you buy.

    • I’m considering Minted’s art styling for my new office. Can you tell me what you thought of the final product? Do you think it was worth it?

  3. I’m interviewing for a job in Minneapolis. I’ve lived in Boston and Chicago most of my adult life. Can anyone comment on what Minneapolis is like? Bonus points if, like me, you’re non-winter-sports inclined! Hikes when it’s 30 and over is about the most I can do, and skiing–no way.

    • Lived here all my adult life – What do you want to know?

      1. We have a rich music tradition (Minnesota Orchestra is world-renown, St. Paul Chamber Orchestra is pretty darn good too), and also First Avenue, if you aren’t the classical music type.
      2. Lots (and lots) of local craft breweries. You do you like IPAs or lagers?
      3. Food – Lots of interesting restaurants happening. I mean, obviously not as much as the bigger cities, but we totally have options.
      4. It’s going to get cold, but it’s usually just a week or two at a time. Usually doesn’t snow as much as Boston or Chicago.
      5. It’s really the Minneapolis-St. Paul area – they don’t call us the Twin Cities for nothing. But you’ll find people are definitely Minneapolis people or St. Paul people. It’s a thing.
      6. Women’s sports tend to be the most successful (at winning games, at least). See Lynx (basketball) and Gopher Women’s Hockey (college)
      7. Most dating sites will involve guys with a fish pic – them holding a fish they caught.

      • Oh, 8. Most theater seats per capita after NYC. Lots of smaller theaters, but both touring Broadway and local production companies do theater shows. Cowles Center for Dance. Plus the stuff that the University brings in at Northrup.

        I’d say it has a lot of the same amenities at Boston/Chicago, but on a smaller scale.

        • More thoughts – lots of activities in the summer as well. Lots of parks and lakes within the Metro area. Bike friendly (people bike-commute even in the winter). Theoretically you can bike all the way from the Lake Minnetonka area (west edge of Metro) to Stillwater (east edge of Metro, on the St. Croix River (MN/WI border).

          Even if you don’t participate in winter sports, there are observation opportunities – usually involving hockey (US Pond Hockey Championship, NHL hockey, College hockey – mens and womens), RedBulls Crashed Ice (Feb in St. Paul), Winter Carnival has a parade and ice carving.

      • Italy advice needed :

        #7 just made me laugh out loud!

      • Ahahaha. My friend wrote in her Tinder profile (Montana) “swipe left if you’re holding fish” . Turns out that eliminated the entire dating pool in our town. She had to change it.

        • Anonymous :

          I don’t know if I believe that – at least one of them had to have been holding an elk rack!

          Says someone who is married to a Montana and has never seen a picture of him from his single adult years without him holding some sort of dead animal (other than a sibling’s wedding where he was best man). I agree with the theory above that it’s the major picture-worth occasion.

          • Ha, yes, there are a lot of pictures with dead (and often bloodied) animals. Such manly men. (Ugh)

    • As someone who is not a lifer, but spent a significant amount of time in Minneapolis, one note is that it can be very insular compared to other large cities I’ve lived in. A lot of people either never leave or come back to raise families and then socialize with the same friend group they grew up with. There’s obviously nothing wrong with that, but I found it difficult to make new friends–not because people aren’t friendly, but because they didn’t have a social need. I was also surprised at how traditional the city can be. I was the only person in my practice group who was unmarried, and part of the reason I moved was that I wasn’t ready for the husband-suburbs-children narrative that so many of my (wonderful) friends were entering.

      Also be prepared to justify why you want to move to Minneapolis. A lot of employers are wary of slight risks from the coasts.

      Reading it back, it all sounds very negative, but I really loved Minneapolis.

    • I have relatives up North, but have never lived there myself. If “culture” is a big thing in your industry (as in not hiring someone bc they didn’t fit the departmental culture), you might want to think about how you phrase the disinterest in winter sports in the chatty parts of the interview. You obviously don’t want to lie, but maybe you could say that you’re going to observe before you dive in or something like that.

      My first winter in a cold place, I froze until January, when someone gave me serious tips (like body suits instead of undershirts, double layers of tights) on dressing for the cold. There have been a kajillion types of fabric developed since then; figuring them all out will probably be a major help in dealing with the cold, even if you’re just out for a couple minutes.

    • MN for life :

      Also a lifer in the Twin Cities area. My outdoor cutoff temp is 30. I live in cuddleduds under everything. My favorite year round activity is walking my dog. In the winter we do indoor dog classes to burn off energy.

      Downtown has a very robust Skyway system so that you don’t have to go outdoors much if you don’t want to.

      I was in Boston recently for work and tried to help a guy on the street that got bit by a pit bull right in front of me (in a nice, nice part of Brookline). He refused to make eye contact or acknowledge my presence. Just wanted to make sure he was okay and didn’t need an ambulance. It was so unnatural to me. Minnesota nice is generally a passive aggressive flakiness – but we do help injured strangers, and make eye contact.

      We also have great art museums, a decent music scene of all types, awesome church communities, lots of ridiculous traffic if you live in the suburbs, the Mall of America, and tons of walking trails and parks. Just like any place you go – there are suburban crowds, hipster/millennial crowds, Whole Foods/healthly/crossfit crowds, and pretentious professsional crowds to hang out with. Great mix of low and high cost of living neighborhoods and people. Lots of diversity. Lots of options and opportunities to try new things and make diverse groups of friends.

      Best of luck with the interview.

    • I lived in Mpls most of my life and only (sadly) left when my husband made me :) There’s a lot more happening than most people think, as previous posters have noted. I don’t think it’s much colder than Boston or Chicago but we have skyways!! Less helpful if you’re not working downtown I guess. Overall it’s a great place to raise a family and a very livable city (can buy a house not too far out from city for reasonable price, traffic isn’t crazy, etc) with lots of great restaurants and culture. And now I’m sad, missing my city :(

    • Thanks everyone, I appreciate the advice!
      It sounds like a nice place to live, and I definitely won’t advertise my non-winter sportiness at the interview : )

  4. Italy advice needed :

    Trying to plan a trip to Italy (2 adults, no kids) and hoping to do both Rome and Cinque Terre in 7 days (6 full days, one almost full day after arriving on a red-eye at 9 am). Is this doable? Does it make sense to do 3 nights and 2 full days in CT and 4 nights and 3 full days in Rome, assuming two days are mostly lost to transit between them? Or would you allocate your time differently?And any advice about which of the five towns to stay in when we’re in CT?

    • I can’t remember where we stayed in Cinque Terre, but I think you’d actually be fine with 1.5 days there (excluding travel time). It was very pretty but there is SO much to do in Rome that I’d spend more time there. And I think 7 days is perfect!

    • I LOVE Rome and Cinque Terre! And yes, you can do it, but if you travel there, do NOT drive. There is a train from Rome to the Cinque Terre which Rosa and I took with Dad. WE slept on the train and it took about 5 hours. The Conductor really liked Rosa, but she was onley about 17 at the time, so it was STRICTLEY NO GO, with Dad watching. When we traveled around we also stopped in at La Spezia and Monteroso. It was JUST like Sisterhood of the Traveleing Pants for us. I wish I could be there right now. YOU are SOOOO Lucky! YAY!!!

    • In college, I had friends do CT in one weekend – travel in Friday, come back Sunday (to/from Venice). So perhaps the train from Rome to CT in the morning and then on the third day, back to Rome. More days in Rome is my suggestion.

    • Italy advice needed :

      Thanks for the input. I’m hesitant to do only one full day in CT because we’re hoping to do a long day hike and if we only have one day in which to do that, and then it rains that day I’m going to be really disappointed. Of course it’s possible to have two days of rain in a row, but the odds of that happening are much lower than having rain one day.

      • That hike sounds beautiful. I always think it’s tricky to get advice on popular destinations and not start trying to convince myself that yes, that thing I’ve never thought of before is totally what I want to spend my time on.

        I’d plan that first day carefully. Picking up food at a local market, boat tours, sitting in a cafe or piazza and people-watching could all be easier than launching yourself into a day of guided tours, cooking classes, or whatever. Depending on your interests, of course.

        There are also websites about train rides that give info on the seat types, what side of the train to sit in, best time to go, etc. That could make the travel time a more enjoyable part of the trip.

    • I would do three nights in CT if you like to hike. We did two nights and felt a bit rushed. I like staying in Riomaggiore–it is a bit sleepier than the other towns. I would suggest taking the train from Rome to CT, but on the way back taking a boat from Riomaggiore to La Spezia and then the train to Rome from there. My favorite hike was Riomaggiore to Manarola #2, and then 6, 6d, 7a up to #1, and then #1 to 9 and down to Monterrosso and straight to the beach to cool off.

  5. Kat, for your upcoming post on travel sizes

    First, please check out the Emme bag. No affiliation here. I saw it on a blog and bought it, and I really love it. It keeps me very well organized.

    I spent the last four years with a 50-75% work travel schedule. It forced me to be very disciplined and organized with my travel cosmetics. I keep my cosmetic/toiletries bag packed at all times, which means I buy everything in twos. All the products I use at home have a sister product that lives in my toiletries bag full-time.

    Here are my major tips –

    First, get TSA pre any way you can. Then you can leave your quart sized ziplock of 3 oz travel sizes in your carry-on, and you can also keep your shoes on.

    Second, only take products you actually use. I know it’s tempting to throw in any sample sizes you have laying around, but a. you won’t use them, or b. you will use them and find your skin breaks out, which is the last thing you need when your’e traveling. Stick with what you use every day.

    Third, if you can’t find a 3 oz or smaller size of your regular item, then get a goop bottle and fill it up. But 3 oz is a pretty generous size, and you will have plenty of room if you reduce the number of items you bring along.

    Fourth, pencils and stick creams are your friends. They don’t count as liquids.

    Fifth, when you leave your hotel room to head home, use the notepad in your room to write down what is empty or almost empty, and put that note in your cosmetics case/clear plastic bag. Before you travel again, you will see this note and make the updates.

    • Anonymous :

      I was looking into getting a reusable zipper bag to replace my worn-out quart ziplocs, but kept reading that European security will make you rebag them at the airport. Have you run into that?

      • No, I flew through Heathrow, Shannon and Liverpool airports last year with no problems. My Emme bag has a zip-off removable plastic bag, and at one point at Shannon I had to take it out. But we got Global Entry before we left and mostly didn’t have to do all of that.

        • Nope. Heathrow, Amsterdam, Helsinki, Birmingham, Manchester, Stanstead, Frankfurt, Vienna, Hamburg, Belgrade, Venice – no problems with a clear zipper bag! (Admittedly, that’s over a couple of years. Heathrow and Amsterdam are last month though.)

          • It happened to me at smaller European airports (Eindhoven, Lublin) and maybe once on Heathrow. They provide you with the back they deem proper.

      • Much to my surprise, I did have that happen in Paris. It wasn’t a huge deal but a bit of a surprise, since it’s never been an issue anywhere else.

      • I travel weekly across Europe. I use a zipped clear bag from Muji, never had a problem.

    • Anonymous :

      I love my Emme travel kit. Love it!

    • If I may ask, what is your job? I would love that much travel!

      • I work in finance. I accepted a job in NY and they said I could do it from SF without moving (which would have been a dealbreaker for me.) Not true! Do not recommend.

  6. I would like to make my daughter’s dream of seeing Hamilton come true, without giving her father a deal-breaking case of sticker shock (he does not enjoy musical theatre and his sense of what is reasonable to pay for tickets is based on the cost of nosebleed seats to productions in our LCOL city). There is a good chance we will be spending a night in NYC this summer, which would be the perfect opportunity. Is it possible for mere mortals from out of town to obtain advance tickets to Hamilton? How? And can it be done for less than, say, $100 per person?

    • Marshmallow :

      IME it’s impossible, sorry. I’m local and have stalked prices on StubHub, and it’s rare to see it below $400. There is a same-day online ticket lottery, though! The chances are teeny, but you could always enter the lottery on the day you’ll be in town, don’t tell your daughter so she doesn’t get her hopes up, and just cross your fingers.

    • Marshmallow :

      Not sure why my previous post was stuck in moderation, but you will not be able to get advance tickets. You could take your chances in the online ticket l o ttery, but you’d have to enter the morning you want to see the show and the chances are pretty small. Link to follow. Good luck!

    • I don’t think so. My coworker pulled this for his two kids, who are serious theater geeks. He looked at every source online, and ended up paying around $400 per ticket for mediocre seats. He and his wife didn’t even attend. They couldn’t afford it and figured they’d attend the touring show when it came to our city. And they just paid $500 each for their tickets…yeah.

    • Anonymous :

      Not remotely possible. You can try waiting in line day of- time consuming and no guarantee, or expect to pay $400 a seat absolute minimum

    • Anonymous :

      There’s a lottery for $10 tickets but the chances of getting tickets through that are microscopic. Guaranteed tickets will be $500/person.

    • I bought tickets through Ticketmaster and they were still $170 each face value. There’s no way to get them in advance for under $100, as far as I know.

    • Anonymous :

      LOL. I live in a small Midwestern city and tickets to touring productions of 15-year-old shows like Mamma Mia are still close to $100. There’s no way you can get Broadway tickets to the most popular show in a generation for that price.

      • Thanks to all for the replies. The articles I found on line indicated that face values were $67 – 177 as of last summer. They must have jacked up the prices the last time they released tickets.

        Is there any rhyme or reason to when new blocks of tickets are released? I am on the e-mail list.

        • Anonymous :

          I think face value prices went up, but most of the tickets you’ll see available in NYC are resale (through Ticketmaster’s website) where the prices have been cranked up.

        • Anonymous :

          All tickets through November 2017 are already out. There won’t be any more blocks coming for this summer.

      • “LOL. I live in a small Midwestern city and tickets to touring productions of 15-year-old shows like Mamma Mia are still close to $100. There’s no way you can get Broadway tickets to the most popular show in a generation for that price.”
        Are you always this needlessly snarky?

    • Anonymous :

      I work in theatre in NYC and would say no. It’s hard to get tickets no matter what, particularly when you only have 1 short window of time, and they are not under $100. You might be better off going to see it in another city. There are going to be a lot of other amazing shows here this summer though – try something new!

    • Anonymous :

      You definitely can’t be that picky about the day if you want cheap.

      If you can come back AND you know someone affiliated with an NYC university you could talk them into trying to get you tickets through the school if they’re available. I saw Hamilton a few years ago for $40 (nosebleed weekday seats) courtesy of Columbia. I think they were also available to employees – all you had to do was stand in line on the right day. But this definitely puts you into the school year, and there’s no guarantee of what shows they’ll be selling tickets for any particular season.

      • Anonymous :

        You probably saw it before it was super popular. My MIL works at one of the major New York universities and she gets discounted theater seats, but it’s all stuff that has been out for a year or two and is available to the general public at a reasonable rate or is so new that people haven’t caught onto it yet. She’s been trying to see Hamilton for a couple of years and has never seen it on her discount thing.

        • Anonymous :

          I actually completely spaced on how long it’s been since then, but yeah, I saw it in October 2015, just a few months into its Broadway run. But it had already gotten tons of hype from off-Broadway and early shows, at least judging by the line!

    • I live in Chicago and I had two tickets for <$100 in September. I also bought 2 more tickets for September 2017 hoping I don't have any plans then. I bought the tickets a few months ago but there were plenty available that far in advance. Airfare from NYC to Chicago is pretty cheap :) I loved it so much I have to see it twice..

    • When are their birthdays? Could tix for you & your daughter be her present this year? Or could you get him into something he’d love and then mention that you and DD will be at a musical theater show while he’s enjoying whatever is his thing?

      Would it help convince him if she and/or you were willing to forego one of your regular expenses to “make” money for the tickets?

      Last resort: remind him that she’s growing up, will have different priorities than he does; point out something he thinks is worth $$$ that she doesn’t care about. (Note: as a single mother, I know more about teenagers than I know about marriages).

  7. Anonymous in Texas :

    Would you take a pay cut to have a better commute? Right now I have about a 45 minute commute…mornings aren’t too bad, but afternoons are brutal. There’s a job posted closer to where I live and I’d have about a 15 minute commute. Added plus is that I could run errands at lunch and I really can’t do that now because I’m in the center of town and traffic is a mess all the time. The down side is that it’s a more junior position that I’m at now and they could ask me to take as much as a $40K salary cut. I think I’d be willing to take a $20K cut because there’s value to the better commute and the fact that I won’t come home fried every day from sitting in traffic. What are you thoughts? It’s for a legal position in-house. Thanks!

    • Anonymous :

      It depends on cost of living and what sort of salaries you’re talking about (going from $300K to $260K is pretty different than going from $100K to $60K), but for me saving 30 minutes off my commute each way would probably not be worth a $40K pay cut.

      • Anonymous in Texas :

        Cost of living is pretty low in the suburbs in Texas. I’d be going from $200K to about $160K if I’m right about the range they want to pay for a junior level attorney.

        • Anonymous :

          Two thoughts:
          1. Don’t forget to do the analysis on an AFTER-tax basis. $40k difference in salary is really about ~$28 difference in net take home. But that difference is for many years – so take that into account.
          2. Is there opportunity for advancement at the other company?

        • Yes, Absolutely.

          You would still have a fantastic salary, and I suspect it would go up with experience/time. And your cost of living is so low you will still be able to save a ton. And if you are married too… oh my God.

          The convenience of being close to home if you are married/kids or simply for quality of life is huge… especially if you have a high stress/demanding job.

          And saving an hour a day (at least, as I suspect the commute can be longer in the evening/weather etc..) means 20 hours saved a month or about 260 a year for someone who (works an 8 hour work day….) is 32 days or 6.5 extra weeks of vacation a year (did I get that math right?!?!?).

    • There’s a Mr Money Mustache post about the true cost of commuting – I suggest reading it and working out how much of a paycut it would really be. It may be a lot less of a cut than you think once you’ve worked out how much you’d save in not commuting.

      • True. But most of the MMM advice on commuting is to eliminate the need to commute by car altogether. I’m not sure that the savings would be if you’re going from 45 minutes by car to 15 minutes by car. MMM would likely advise to OP to move to a 1-BR apartment extremely close to the high-paying job, sell her car, and bike everywhere.

        • Anonymous :

          Yeah, you are not really saving much money if you’re just cutting your commute length and not eliminating your car completely, especially with gas as cheap as it is now.

          • JuniorMinion :

            Additionally I would add in Texas (I am in oil and gas specifically), sometimes there are hidden “costs” given the current economy. Is the prospective employer as stable as your current employer? Are they as desirable? Is this going from a large well respected downtown employer to a large well respected energy corridor / spring employer? Or are you making major reputational tradeoffs for a shorter commute. Especially right now when certain employers are instituting pay cuts / suspending 401k match etc and certain employers are not this could end up becoming a larger difference than it is initially.

            I guess in summary it totally depends on individual factors – going from chevron to exxon? Probably not a big deal and people may not be able to suss out the pay cut in the future. Going from Chevron to small no name company at a more junior role would make me as a future prospective interviewer really question your career strategy.

      • OP MMM’s numbers/advice are good but possibly too stringent for most people.

        That said, as a Houstonian I know that a lot of people that commute 45 minutes from the burbs are paying quite a bit in tolls each way. $500/month is fairly standard. Are you one of those? If so, if you add gas to that, $12,000 a year in commuting costs might be a pretty reasonable ballpark for what you’re paying.

        Can you negotiate any on the $40k paycut? If you can shave it down to closer to $30k or even $20k, personally, I think it starts to make a lot more sense.

    • I’d go for the job assuming no pay cut. If they really want you I think they’d make it happen. But to answer your question, I wouldn’t take a pay cut of that size for a commute. There are other issues to consider, mainly that you’re starting over in the new job and you leave behind a lot of knowledge and experience.

    • Anonymous :

      Yes but not $40K

      How do the other benefits compare? Can you get them to do $20K cut and extra vacation week or better retirement/health benefit?

    • I’d be more concerned with the implications of taking a more junior role than the pay cut. How would this affect you long term? Is it more of a title issue, or substantive work? Is there growth in the role? I would also look at it as a percentage of your salary, not just the raw dollars.

    • Anon for this :

      I’m doing the opposite. I’m possibly going from a 20-25 min commute to a 40-60 min commute for a 40k or so pay raise. Currently at 90k pre-bonus and this would likely be 150k pre-bonus.

      • Anonymous in Texas :

        Here’s a link to the article about the true cost of commuting referenced above. It’s worth the read:

    • There’s another thing to consider. I heard once on NPR that everyone does the maximum commute *for themselves.* If you have a 45 minute commute, you think the guy doing the 2 hour commute is nuts, but there’s someone doing a 20 minute commute who thinks you’re nuts.

      This phenomenon leads to people naturally living their own maximum commute radius from their job. For example, here in the Bay Area, the commute from Livermore to San Francisco is a maximum commute for a lot of people. But as office space gets more expensive in the city and more businesses move their offices to cheaper East Bay areas like San Ramon, suddenly that Livermore to San Ramon commute isn’t so bad. But this only lasts for a while, because now those former Livermore commuters either find themselves priced out of Livermore or able to live in a bigger house if they go back to their previous commute, so they move to Tracy.

      Be sure that’s not something you’d do, or if you do start thinking this way, remember that I said this. Your quality of life would not improve in the long run.

  8. One of my best work friends, a gay man who LOVES Adele, is so happy that Adele won best album that he keeps taunting me about Lemonade losing. He keeps saying 25 was so much better. I finally asked him if he’d listened to or seen Lemonade and he hasn’t. (Yes, even liberal gay men think they know everything about everything without even experiencing it.)

    Time has an online article today about how difficult it is for a black artist to win the best album grammy.

    I’ve listened to 25 and I’ve watched and listened to Lemonade, over and over. 25 is an excellent album. Lemonade is a work of art. I just don’t understand.

    • Anonymous :

      Even Adele thinks Lemonade is better.

      • Anonymous :

        This. Adele is wonderful but she has acknowledged that Beyonce should have won.

        • yeah, I told my friend I was just agreeing with Adele but he said she was just being gracious. I disagree, I think her dismay was genuine.

          • Anonymous :

            If he’s into gossip Lainey Gossip has had a few great pieces today and over the last week talking about why Adele would and did win.

    • Marshmallow :

      I just don’t understand how anyone can get so personally invested in a celebrity that they’d taunt their friends about who won a Grammy. Depending how close I was to this friend, I’d probably make some comment about how he’s reminding me of the middle school feuds we used to have over N Sync vs. Backstreet Boys. Add the fact that he’s never even listened to Lemonade and he is just making himself sound like an idiot.

      This seems to me like a classic example of how people who don’t THINK they are taking race into account, probably incorporated some inherent bias and archetypes into their decision-making. Beyonce and Adele were both completely class acts about it and both handled it beautifully. Maybe tell your friend to take a page out of Adele’s book and be gracious.

      • Think of it like sports. Some people are just really into music, myself included. I’m a musician.

        • Marshmallow :

          Oh, I get caring about it, but I don’t get the taunting. I feel the exact same way about sports. I also consider myself very into music (including Adele! recently saw her live!), but I just wouldn’t see the point in taunting somebody over it.

    • I dont really get it either. A few years ago she lost to Beck’s artistry and now people are saying she lost because of Adele’s record breaking sales. Regardless of what you think of Beyonce as a person or her music, Lemonade was so much better than 25. I’m an Adele fan but she really hasnt evolved much from 19 or 21! But Lemonade tackled many social issues, it told a story, AND included several different genres of music (I mean… a country song AND a song with Jack Black come ON).

      I’m not even a Beyonce superfan but even I believe she was robbed of AOTY…

      • Oh god i meant Jack White haha – miss the editing function…

      • Never too many shoes... :

        Anonny – “Regardless of what you think of Beyonce as a person or her music, Lemonade was so much better than 25. “… I am just not sure you can categorically say that. This I an issue I have generally when we are speaking about awards for art – there is a wide variety of things that will please different people and it sometimes feels like comparing apples to oranges. I see the appeal of Lemonade, but 25 really spoke to me. That being said, I would not have been upset to see Beyoncé win….I think I am having trouble with the idea that people care SO MUCH about who took home any award that they would taunt a friend over it.

        • I think the OPs friend is just being immature and annoying. While yes, artistry is objective, overall this particular instance is apart of a much deeper/systemic issue in the music industry as a whole, which is a big reason people are upset about the loss… I dont really have the energy to write some long post about it but as Anonymous at 3:37pm suggested, Lainey Gossip has some thoughtful commentary on all of this

          • TOTALLY agree it is about race and inherent/subconscious bias. That is what is so frustrating.

            As Adele said of Beyonce, WHAT does she have to do to win?

    • Anonymous :

      I think Adele deserved it. I have never understood the hype about Beyonce – she makes some catchy songs but I have never understood why people worship her or think her music is on a different level than other best-selling artists. But I also wouldn’t go around taunting someone who was sad about it. That just seems really immature. I thought both of them were very gracious about it, and it made me have a lot of respect for both of them as people.

      • have you seen the Lemonade film?

      • I don’t think Beyonce is ground-breaking musically, but I also never really understood the appeal of Prince either. They’re both good artists in their own ways, but nothing that gets me excited personally. I didn’t love her performance last night, thought it was a little overdone, but it was better than say, Bruno Mars half-assing his piece (the non-Prince tribute one).

        BUT THAT SAID, Lemonade was the best album of the year. Better than 25. It totally deserved to win last night, and even I was frustrated on her behalf.

    • Anon for this :

      For whatever reason, reading this put Amy Schumer’s “Milk, Milk, Lemonade” in my head and now I can’t get it out. Or stop laughing.

    • Did he not hear Adel say that Beyoncé was robbed?

  9. Having a crappy day. Nasty cold came on yesterday, found out the close of my house will likely no longer happen this Friday (appraisal still isn’t in, so nothing I can control), and spent half the morning with an employee at my company arguing about how to apply a policy. The discussion ended with him emailing “you need to review and better understand this policy before you apply it.” Well… I’m the company’s subject matter expert on the issue, and I wrote the darn policy.

    • Marshmallow :

      Ugh, all of that sounds awful. Hang in there. I hope the mansplainer gets put in his place.

      • Best joke I have ever heard: Where does a mansplainer get his water? A well, actually.

        • Sloan Sabbith :

          I saw this on Facebook and laughed for a solid thirty seconds and then shared it and sent it to everyone I know. So great.

    • Mansplainer :

      Please email him back and say “I understand it perfectly because I wrote it.”

  10. call me maybe :

    Is it worth trying to get a (promised, approved, stupidly delayed) title bump come through faster so that I can use it on my CV while applying for new jobs so that I can leave the job that has delayed my promotion? I know normally it’s a bad idea to take the title without the salary increase but in this case it seems like it might be strategic. My boss (who is amazing) has already told me a) that in her mind I’m essentially already doing the work of the higher title (she’s not responsible for the hold-up) and b) that the delay (which is indicative of some other issues that have just become apparent) is making her think about looking.

    • Anonymous :

      I say yes, but with a caveat.

      Obviously the salary increase in addition would be best for compensation negotiations once you have the job, but the elevated job title could you get you an interview – without which, there would be no option of compensation negotiations.

      Caveat: If you have a particular position at a particular employer in mind AND the new title would put you above the desired position, you may want to consider whether it is a good strategic move. Sometimes people are hesitant to bring on someone who will need to take a step down the ladder.

  11. Job Hunter :

    I hope it isn’t too late in the day to ask for advice- but I am trying to relocate for my fiancé’s job and it has left me in tears. I probably sound like such a baby but I have barely started and it seems like it is impossible, and there are 500 hurdles to overcome- my foreign education, the fact I didn’t get straight As in law school (still good grades though), and I feel like I have many too many mistakes in my legal career (working at small firms that pay market but aren’t ‘big’ firms) and now I can’t do what I want to do. It’s left me sad and depressed…I’m struggling to find ways to make myself more marketable. No one seems to have any solutions. I’m willing to do the work, but right now it seems like my efforts might be a lost cause. I need help, guidance, something…

    • Anonymous :

      Break it down into steps. When my husband immigrated here, it was a long process to confirm his PHD equivalency and find appropriate level work. Within 3 years his career was thriving. It feels really overwhelming right now so make yourself lists of what to do for each step. Get the foreign credential recognition taken care of first. Then try a visit to your fiance to do some networking in person. Ask someone in your field in your target country to review your resume. My now husband was shocked when I had him take his marital status off his resume – that’s standard where he was from.

    • lawsuited :

      I have always worked in small shops and I’ve had no trouble relocating a couple of times to small shops in new cities. It’s hard to go from a small shop to a big shop, but I assume that wherever you are looking to move will have small shops as well. Focus on describing the depth and variety of your work experience, and small shops will recognize you as the kind of lawyer they’re looking for. Sure, small shops like hiring lawyers who got As, but they care a lot more about that fact that you can carry a file load and work independently.

    • Are you open to sharing where you’re moving from/to?

  12. Low Maintenance Polish :

    I’m looking for low maintenance life hacks to looking more polished, if that is a thing. If the reality is “you need to put in a lot of effort”, then tell me that.

    But here’s an example: I have a fleece jacket that is light yellow. I’ve had it for 6 years. I guess I should say it once was light yellow. It is now a sad grayish yellow. What I’m thinking is that the next jacket should be a color like gray, right? I can’t do black with my coloring– I’m pale and it looks really harsh. Or some other dark color?

    And I shouldn’t paint my nails, because they will chip, but I could buff them.

    Basically I’m lazy but I don’t want to look like crap. Any suggestions?

    • Anonymous :

      1- throw that jacket away. Do not replace it. Fleece does not look polished. Go for something more polished to start.

      • Low Maintenance Polish :

        Maybe polished isn’t the right word then. Non-bedraggled?

        • Anonymous :

          Still, fleece isn’t helping you at all.

          • This is correct. I love fleece and own several, but would never dream of wearing them to work, and I work at a very casual office.

          • Low Maintenance Polish :

            ^ oh, the fleece would be for the weekend.

          • Low Maintenance Polish :

            (I’m not trying to be argumentative, just clarifying. I am understanding that fleece is not a polished material)

          • Love of fleece totally depends on where you live, anyway.

          • Got it, Low Maintenance Polish. You might want to look at stores like Athleta or Title9 for more polished weekend clothes. I reserve fleece for occasions when I’m trying actively to look unpolished (because skiing or hiking or otherwise sweating). They have great layering pieces that will keep you warm but look more polished.

          • Wildkitten :

            Get a softshell!

        • Blonde Lawyer :

          Try more modern “fleece.” I recently bought this yoga jacket at Target.


          It looks so polished and is so comfortable that I now feel frumpy when I wear my old hooded sweatshirts.

          Side fact for anyone following the morning posts, I was so allergic to the wool dress I wore today that I ended up changing into my post yoga clothes which were in my car. The frumpiest big sweatshirt that my husband owned in college and lululemon dance studio pants. Luckily it’s a slow day here and I had no meetings and can hide in my office. I really wish I had that Target “fleece” instead. I put it in quotes because it doesn’t look at all like fleece.

    • You are the perfect candidate for buying fewer, higher quality items for clothing. Go to a nicer store than you usually go to. Maybe ask for a personal shopper’s help. They are free at better department stores.

      You might also take an online quiz about your best colors. You don’t have to live life in gray if you don’t like it (this coming from someone who really likes gray.)

      No one needs polished nails to look well groomed. You should have your hair cut regularly unless it is long and not layered.

      • Marshmallow :

        Re hair: there are plenty of options for various hair types that don’t require blow drying or excessive styling. If you have straight hair like me, I suggest a fairly blunt cut and Bumble & Bumble’s “Don’t blow it” styling cream.

        In addition to the fewer/better clothing philosophy, make sure that your clothes fit perfectly. Get them tailored if you have to. If your closet is full of high-quality, great-fitting pieces, you won’t need to spend time figuring out what to wear in the morning. And to look polished at work very quickly, keep a fitted black blazer on the back of your chair. You can throw it over nearly any simple outfit to punch it up.

        Buy good quality leather shoes and have them professionally cleaned when necessary. In between, try those little bottles of polish with sponges on the tip (Kiwi makes good ones) to cover scuffs and shine them up. If you are truly lazy/ pressed for time, you can buy something called “leather lotion” that has no color and will freshen up nearly any pair of leather shoes.

        • I agree with all of those. I’ve told my hairdresser for years that I don’t want to have to blow dry and curl my hair every time I swim. I think the cuts she gives me look good.

          Funny thing about the shoe polish–I think of the kiwi as a quickie/lazy coverup and using something to work off/out the stains and scuffs as doing the work.

          OP, what kind of bag do you carry? It’s worth it to figure out exactly what you want/need, and find just the thing.

          I wish I could get into the mindset of “Juist toss it into a folder” when I’m done with something, because my desk is always a mess.

          I find it easiest to repeat meals over and over–pack jar salads or slices of quiche & fruit on weekends, go to the same couple of restaurants, etc. Not to be rigid, but just to free up mental space for other things. Also applies to having a very specific spot for keys, etc.

          Figure out a work uniform or a completely mix & match capsule wardrobe. Again, putting in the time in advance lets it look effortless in the moment. (I loved having beads or emroidery around the neckline of shirts/dresses while it lasted–top and necklace all in one, no chance of forgetting the necklace. Maybe that will come around)

          I’ve happened into some of these along the way, but never thought of them strategically, think you are brilliant for looking at life this way.

      • I agree with the first two comments. Fleece is just not a ‘polished’ material, try a wool coat in a color like navy or gray or heck even red! Pastels are hard to keep clean and if you cannot keep an item clean, it will not look polished. Other helpful tips would be to keep things at a level of maintenance you can handle. If you can’t keep your nails polished (no worries, neither can I), keep them short and clean. Bonus points for buffed, clean cuticles, or clear polish. Likewise, if you can’t straighten your hair every day, get a cut that works with your natural curl/wave, so that the amount of maintenance you want/can put in is as much as is needed to look polished. Invest in fewer, higher quality pieces that you can maintain in colors that work for you that you can mix/match.

        • Absolutely agree with keeping things at a level of maintenance you can handle. I think that also means being honest with yourself about what level of maintenance you are actually going to achieve.

          So, OP if that means foregoing nail polish because you know you’re not going to keep it up, the just don’t polish your nails. Be honest with yourself about how often you have to redo the polish to keep them looking neat if you want them to be polished, and if you aren’t going to do that, then just don’t do it. Instead of being hard on yourself for not maintaining the polish, just recognize that you don’t actually want to do it, and just don’t.

          I used to feel like I wasn’t doing enough to look a certain way I thought I was supposed to look, and would criticize myself for not doing those things, mostly about the way I dressed. I had this idea that I was supposed to be putting together amazing creative outfits every day and that people would think of me as a snappy dresser. I’ve learned to accept that I’m just not a creative, fashion-forward dresser, and it’s OK if I don’t dress in a memorable way as long as I look neat and professional.

    • I have no advice for you, but I think that this would make a great post idea for Kat!

    • I love stuff like this, so following for comments.

      I think your conclusion about the jacket is a really good one. It also shows that you have an awareness of what does and doesn’t look polished (and what does and doesn’t suit you), which means you’re already way ahead of the many people who just don’t see/care how they look. Also, you seem to be looking for both long-term strategic hacks (pick a jacket color that won’t show wear/dirt) and day-to-day tactical hacks (don’t paint nails).

      Strategy: In general, if you’re trying to look polished, I would opt against fleece or any other kind of performance material (like, I dunno, those rapid-dry travel dresses that people wear while vacationing in Burma).

      Tactic: I am a cosmetics novice but I find the Clinique Chubby Sticks really manageable. I keep one in my bag and because the color is so sheer, I can swipe it on the way I would chapstick (without worrying about a mirror), but I look way more put together and intentional.

      Strategy: Inspired by some commenters here as well as other anecdata, I’ve been streamlining my wardrobe to a few base colors (black, blue, and gray, in my case) and mixing and matching accordingly. This has been more about getting rid of things (like the random brown pieces that were not good with my coloring) than about buying new, but having a more coherent color palette makes picking outfits easier.

      Tactic: And yes, I plan my outfits for the week on Sunday. And then I do all the week’s ironing at once, usually while videochatting with my sister or listening to a podcast.

      • I love those dresses for running around town, meetings at my kid’s school, that sort of thing! The shelf bra is perfect for me, and I’m much more put together than I would be in a shirt, bra, and shorts. Less sweaty too, which matters in Florida.

    • I love stuff like this, so following for comments.

      I think your conclusion about the jacket is a really good one. It also shows that you have an awareness of what does and doesn’t look polished (and what does and doesn’t suit you), which means you’re already way ahead of the many people who just don’t see/care how they look. Also, you seem to be looking for both long-term strategic hacks (pick a jacket color that won’t show wear/dirt) and day-to-day tactical hacks (don’t paint nails).

      Strategy: In general, if you’re trying to look polished, I would opt against fleece or any other kind of performance material (like, I dunno, those rapid-dry travel dresses that people wear while vacationing in Burma).

      Tactic: I am a cosmetics novice but I find the Clinique Chubby Sticks really manageable. I keep one in my bag and because the color is so sheer, I can swipe it on the way I would chapstick (without worrying about a mirror), but I look way more put together and intentional.

      Strategy: Inspired by some commenters here as well as other anecdata, I’ve been streamlining my wardrobe to a few base colors (black, blue, and gray, in my case) and mixing and matching accordingly. This has been more about getting rid of things (like the random brown pieces that were not good with my coloring) than about buying new, but having a more coherent color palette makes picking outfits easier.

      Tactic: And yes, I plan my outfits for the week on Sunday. And then I do all the week’s ironing at once, usually while videochatting with my sister or listening to a podcast.

    • lawsuited :

      Definitely don’t wear discoloured clothing. Replacing clothing that is discoloured, stained, frayed, etc. is an easy way to look polished. Same goes for scuffed, dirty or broken shoes. Unless you work in a very casual environment, consider a ponte jacket instead of a fleece one.

      You don’t need to wear makeup or paint your nails (unless maybe you bite them which can look unpolished), but cutting and styling your hair (I have a lob that takes 5 minutes to straighten) and grooming your eyebrows will go a long way to making you look put together.

    • I love colorful coats. I was on the hunt for a teal coat when I ended up with a wine colored one by Guess from Nordstrom at some sale last year. So far it’s held up very well and, imo, looks much more expensive than it is.

      Re nails – maintain your cuticles and lightly file just about every day. Keeping them filed will help to prevent chips and breaks so you can keep the length even on all your nails. For cuticles, use a cuticle cream or just your hand cream (often) and trim or get a manicure when they start looking a little tattered.

    • Anonymous :

      Try on everything in your wardrobe. If you wouldn’t buy it again today, get rid of it. That means the long-term loved formerly-yellow jacket, clothes that don’t fit right, clothes with stains/holes/wear that can’t be fixed, or clothes that don’t look good on you or that you just don’t like. (I have to do this about once a year because I hate getting rid of things that are ‘still perfectly functional.’)

      Assess what you have left and what you are missing, and fill those gaps with new items. Sounds like you prefer to keep an item through its lifespan, so buy a high quality version of whatever it is. (I hate shopping and replacing loved items, so I stick to brands that I know will last).

      I’m also very pale and once had a weekend yellow jacket that looked super gross. I like natural shades of purple, green, grey, and navy/dark blue for jackets. Fun colors, don’t wash me out, and take dirt pretty well. I’m going to assume from the fleece jacket that you are in the PNW – if so, wear fleece! It looks polished here, lol.

      For nails, make sure they are clean. Don’t chew or pick at them. Keep a nail file on hand. Cuticle/hand cream as needed if they get dry.

      Gently exfoliate, which will help keep your skin looking brighter. Wear sunscreen. Your future self (who will still not want to wear a full face of make up to cover up sun damage…) will thank you.

      I completely agree with the suggestion to base your wardrobe around a few colors (and styles) that work well for you (complexion, figure, lifestyle) and choose your outfits the night before or even for the entire work week. On the weekend, I typically pick out one ‘outside the house’ outfit that I can change in and out of without having to think about it. If you find yourself commonly at the same types of weekend events, get 2-3 go-to outfits for those types of events.

    • Get your clothes tailored so they fit very well; this will make you look much more put-together, and all you will have to do is visit a tailor a few times.

  13. I want to thank whoever recommended Snow White and the Asian Pear a few threads back during a discussion of exfoliators! I fell down a rabbit hole of Asian Skin Care products and am now trying a whole new routine, thanks to $70 worth of Amazon purchases.

    I’m shocked–SHOCKED–by the low prices. USA skin care prices look insane next them! I have super dry skin and was using Clinique 3-step combined with Moisture Surge extra cream, and it just wasn’t cutting it. I was out of product and dreading buying more, so I checked out the blog and gave her recommendations a shot.

    I’m on day 3 of cleansing with Banila Co. Clean It Zero + the rest of my Clinique mild soap, followed by Beauty of Joseon Dynasty cream and Snail Recovery Gel Cream. That’s all I bought so far, and my skin already feels much smoother and has more oil than it has in months.

    I have an essence, toner, ampule, low PH cleanser and an 50+ sunscreen on order and am so excited to try them! THANK YOU!!!

    • Might have been me – I LOVE asian skin care, and you’re right, it is SO much cheaper than the US prices. Granted, a lot of what I buy is equivalent to their drugstore brands, but even the fancy sulwahsoo stuff doesn’t seem as insane as say the Sunday Riley things.
      The low PH cleanser and 50+ sunscreen were such game changers for me – sunblock that didn’t feel awful and greasy was mindblowing!

    • Been there :

      Link to your 50 + sunscreen please! I’m still looking for a physical sunscreen that doesn’t leave skin a whitish tint. I used to really like Elta MD (per a rec here) but the last two bottles I bought had manufacturing issues (dispenser stopped working after a while).

      • Shiseido Senka Aging Care UV Sunscreen – I have this on order with Amazon, but it’s not supposed to arrive until mid-March. It was a whopping $7.

        Other bloggers really love Biore Kao Japan Ultra Rich Sarasara (also on Amazon, $9) but one that seemed to have skin like mine said it irritated her skin. People rave about these Japanese sunscreens so I figured I’d give it a shot!

        • Unfortunately per the Q&A on Amazon for this, this isn’t a physical sunscreen. It’s chemical.

          Been there, I use CeraVe spf 50 facial sunscreen. It’s less of a whitish tint than others I’ve tried. I use a little bit of mineral oil on my fingers before I put it on and that seems to help it rub in too.

      • Anonymous :

        Search on RatzillaCosme for physical sunscreens (it’s one of the options in the advanced search) and then check r/AsianBeauty for more reviews.

      • Not an asian skin product but Clinque City Block is a product that has been around forever and is all physical sunscreen. They add a light tint to mask the whitish tint that physical sunscreens by their nature inevitably give off.

    • I’d like to get started using Asian skin care. How do I educate myself? What products do you recommend? (Oily combination skin, very very sensitive to fragrance smells, breakout prone.). I want glowing smooth skin, and reduce undereye circles.

      • I started with reading on Snow White and the Asian Pear and also 50 Shades of Snail blogs. SokoGlam is an online store and has reviews as well. I am using a couple of the CosRx product and like them. Amazon has a lot of products from different lines.

      • I’d strongly suggest FanServiced-B blog, she’s got your skin type (and mine as well). Starting with an oil cleaners, a low-ph cleanser, a toner, and a BHA plus a serum and good sunblock can all be done for under $100 via amazon, and has made a huuuuge difference in my skin.

      • Oh! And the cosrx acne patches are uh-mazing for breakouts. I would have killed for these as a teen.

      • AB Fanatic :

        The absolute best resource is the Asian Beauty reddit. They have several guides on how to start building a routine (see the reddit sidebar), a huge community (70,000+) with a daily question thread that can answer any question you have, and great recommendations on different products for every skin type.

        For the OP, you’ll find that the best way to start is slowly. Test one product at a time, for at least a week. It’s easy to get excited, but if you start all your products at once and one causes a reaction or a breakout, you’ll never know what is causing the problem.

        Re: sunscreens… Biore UV Aqua Rich Watery Essence is one of the top favorites and is available on Amazon. There is a reformulation coming out in March that is water-resistant. It is SPF 50+ PA +++ and is really so much more cosmetically elegant than Western sunscreens.

      • Thank YOU all!

  14. Shoe, meet Sock :

    My new booties are pulling my socks down. I have to pull up my socks several times each day. They fit well overall, but are a bit loose in the ankle. Not enough to be bothersome, although enough that I’m guessing it’s the cause of my sock issue.

    FWIW, The issue isn’t the socks – I’ve tried different types of socks, all of which are pairs that work well with my other shoes. I have had many other pairs of shoes by this same brand without this issue.

    Is there anything I can do about it?

    • Anonymous :

      ankle socks?

    • It’s probably your heel slipping. Have you tried a ball of foot pad to move your foot back and more firmly against the back of the shoe?

      • Shoe, meet Sock :

        This sounds like the issue and fix. I meant to say they are loose in the heel, not ankle.

        I don’t understand what product you’re suggesting though. Do you have a name or link?

        • something like this

    • Anonymous :

      Stick a tongue pad into your shoes. Nordstrom et al should give them out, buy you can buy cheaply on Amazon.

  15. Static cling issues :

    I have a few unlined dresses that cling like crazy to my tights, so I bought a couple of slips. There’s still cling, just a little less. Is this normal, or do I need to go on the hunt for better slips?

    • Maybe? But I’d try a can of the static guard spray first and see if that fixes it.

      • Anonymous :

        +1 – It’s winter (and dry) so static is just going to happen. Slips are slippery, so fabric slide along each other, rather than textures catching on each other. They aren’t necessarily anti-static.

    • Anonymous :

      Is the dress clinging to the slip (maybe new slip… or new dress) or to tights below the slip (longer slip or have tailor line the dress)?

      • anonymous :

        the dress clings to the slip which clings to the tights. the slip is the same length as the dress. There’s definitely less cling, but I guess I just thought that there wouldn’t be any cling after I put on a slip.

  16. concrete driveway - MCOL city :

    Any idea what a new concrete driveway that is ~2000 sq ft would cost in a MCOL city like ATL?

  17. Anonymous :

    My Manager is moving to Atlanta. Any gift ideas? He is into hockey and doesn’t drink coffee. I want to thank him for being a great mentor for the first year of my career.

    • Write a thank you note, don’t give a gift.

    • A plane ticket to a city with hockey?

    • lost academic :

      Then he’s gonna be sad that we sold our hockey team to Winnipeg. A heartfelt note seems to fit the bill.

    • A note – definitely. Something that makes clear that you appreciate his involvement in your career and your professional growth and you hope it continues (assuming you want him to remain a mentor). Aside from that – the only gift I’d consider giving a manager as a 1st yr would be coffee and since that’s out – maybe a bottle of wine/alcohol to celebrate his move/promotion (if that’s what this is). The gift isn’t necessary but I think the note is – mentors are hard to come by and an expression of thanks can keep a mentor relationship going long after people move companies/cities.

    • Wildkitten :

      2,000 sq ft concrete driveway

  18. Travel sizes:

    I travel a lot and mostly only with carry on.
    I try to use the same product to not confuse my skin-so I stay away from random samples.

    My favorite products:
    Estee Lauder-Take it away- Makeup Remover Lotion (not water needed), 1oz, available on ebay
    Estee Lauder-Double Wear Foundation (the normal size is small enough for carry on)
    Nivea Soft (small tin)- lotion for hands and body
    Not your mothers-Clean Freak Dry Shampoo in travel size
    Nail polish remover wipes (store brand)

    • Yes, the Nivea tin is great. I always expect hotels to have lotion, and they usually do, but the Nivea comes in handy for those unexpected times they don’t. Plus it’s creamier so I like to put it on my elbows and feet before bed.

      The nail polish remover wipes are also a must have if you wear nail polish, but I find that a few trips up and down in altitude makes them dry out, so change them out occasionally.

  19. Face mask recs :

    I’ve been thinking I should add the occasional mask to my beauty routine. Something easy to do every week or two to help…. ?remove old dead stuff? Make my skin look better? You tell me….

    I’ve had lifelong acne until recently starting spironolactone + Retin-A. Now my skin is no longer oily and no more breakouts.

    • If your skin is happy now, I would actually leave it alone. I think the Retin-A is exfoliating your skin, and I wouldn’t add another exfoliant on top of that, especially if your skin is sensitive. If you find your skin looks dry, then I might look for a gentle oil-free moisturizer, or you could try a mask that does something similar. But I would also take my derm’s advice and sleep with a humidifier in the room.

    • Depends on what you want a mask to do. With all the exfoliation you are getting from Retin-A, I agree with January, not additional exfoliation is needed. Definitely nothing with scrubbing stuff in it, because the Retin-A has made your skin thinner, and you just don’t need it.

      I also use Spiro and Retin-A and I do an occasional mud mask. I look at the ingredients to make sure there are no super irritating agents (these lists are available pretty easily online) but I do like the soothingness of putting on a mask for 1/2 hour while I watch tv, then gently washing it away. You can do the same with cold cream when your face is extra dry.

      Does it improve my skin? Dunno. It seems to give me a little extra smoothness and a peachy glow in my cheeks.

    • I frequently use Korean masks I buy on Amazon. They’re very gentle and moisturizer instead of exfoliating. Agree that exfoliating may be overkill for you.

      • Face mask recs :

        Appreciate the recs on not exfoliating too much. Thank you!

      • AB Fanatic :

        I second the rec for hydrating sheet masks. Leaders have some nice ones, but almost all Korean or Taiwanese sheet masks will be great for hydration.

    • My favorite masks:

      Sephora sheet masks (relatively inexpensive, they do a decent job of staying on your face, and they’re super hydrating)
      Origins Charcoal mask
      Dr. G Peeling Mask (this is less of a traditional mask and more of a facewash/scrub that I use in the shower)
      Philosophy Microdelivery Detoxifying Oxygen Peel (it’s 2 steps, but it doesn’t take very long and OMG my skin feels amazing afterwards)

  20. ARGH!!!!!!!ANON :


Add a Comment

Thank you for commenting. On the off chance that your comment goes to moderation, note that a moderation message will only appear if you enter an email address. If you have any questions please check out our commenting policy.

work fashion blog press mentions