Haute couture 2019

Haute Couture shows were held in Paris January 21 to 24, full of wonder and lots of shimmer. Elie Saab said he wanted to celebrate the magic of femininity, and I think that perfectly describes couture. It’s where fashion goes to be extra dreamy and playful just because it can. I always become inspired by these shows, honestly I think it would be hard not to at least view a couture show and feel happy. Enjoy a few of my favorites, and don’t forget to check back in for full length videos!

 

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Valentino

 

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Chanel

 

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Elie Saab

 

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Givenchy

 

 

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Ralph & Russo

 

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Zuhair Murad

Photos courtesy of Vogue

2019 Fashion Forecast

Happy New Year! We are looking forward to a new year of great fashion, but are you up with the latest trends? If not, here are a few that are expected to be big in 2019. Adding one of two to your own wardrobe will put you right on the latest fashion scene.

Of course layers are especially important in the winter to keep warm, but you can also use them to provide your wardrobe with a fashionable twist. They provide length, depth and color to any ensemble for an extra chic appearance. A popular coat trend so far that’s also expected to continue trending has been the teddy bear coat, a fuzzy faux fur look that will supersize your silhouette. Due to it natural shades in light tan, beige and brown, it’s also a great option for those wishing to achieve an androgynous look.

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faux leather earring courtesy pinterest

Faux leather fabric is going to be very popular, especially by way of accessories. This eco friendly choice has increased in Pinterest searches by over 2,800 percent! I think this would also be a really fun DIY to try.

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We at Fashionightmares LOVE sparkles and sequin jumpsuits are definitely going to be a hit in the upcoming year. They are unique, pragmatic and a fun alternative to a party dress. The more colorful, the better.

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Pleated skirts are so versatile, and in the right fabric, so comfortable. Dressy or casual in a variety of lengths from mini to maxi, this is a multifaceted piece that you will love having in your wardrobe all year long.

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If you love a good cardigan or looking for that fun layering piece, then you might be interested in the popcorn cardigan. The style has already been seen being sold online and in retail shops. A pronounced stitch that resembles popcorn will provide a thick, textural element to amp up basics or add a playful touch to an ensemble. This cardi is also in Pantone’s color of the year: Coral. I love this bright hue when I want a pop of color that’s vivid, but not fluorescent. Keep in mind it will be a great shade to wear through the spring and summer.

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Silk and satin tops are making a comeback after fading from the fashion scene in the early 2000s. From long sleeves to camisoles, this fabric will add a touch or luxe and shimmer to your wardrobe. This is a revival we’re excited to have!

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The trend I personally am still on the fence about is the cycler short. I will admit as athleisure they are better than the dreaded yoga short, but I don’t find them as a suitable item to “dress up” or wear to work. If you really, really, really need the addition to your wardrobe, I guess they’d do for an extremely casual event, but personally, I’m not recommending it.

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Chanel, Fendi & Roberto Cavalli

Which trends would you try or find exciting? Share your thoughts in comments!

Photos courtesy of Google Image, Pinterest, Elle, Insider and Poshmark

Paris Fashion Week Spring 2019

Paris fashion is effortless, natural, undone and impossibly cool. As we make our way to the city known for such magnificent sites such as the Eiffel Tower, the Louvre, and the Arc de Triomphe, keep in mind that it takes a herculean task to be mentioned in the same group as those sites, and this years Paris fashion week did not disappoint. Get ready for some top quality examples of fashion that will be worthy of being presented in this wonderful city. Some of our favorite and most beloved labels show in the city of light, so let’s take a look. Videos of the shows will be posted soon!

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Yes, yes & yes to Elie Saab. Yes times infinity. This collection had lots of energy and lots of life. Ever alluring, soft, edgy and vivid, there was great contrast throughout the runway. Solid black or white pieces worked seamlessly against red and orange florals, multi-color stripe dresses and even a few leopard print pieces. These are not your mom’s spring floral’s.

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Balenciaga shared an immersive experience of the runway with artist Jon Rafman from Art Basel. The light tunnel changing color throughout the show created a rare ambiance you wouldn’t normally get at a fashion show. High drama and logo prints definitely made this season vanguard.

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Isabel Marant’s bohemian energy was present as ever. I loved that this line is never overly fussy, but still maintains a touch of prettiness, with its frills or ruffles, lace, little touches of this and that. This season had sparkles here and shimmers there, faded pinks, copper, maroon, silver and light blue. There were some western plays with denim and vests paired with plaid, but then showed off its french side with trendy halter and asymmetrical sleeve crop tops paired with leather shorts, and ultra femme rompers. Fashion tip for next season: pair anything with slouchy boots and viola.

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Dance and fashion both speak about the body. That was the focus at Dior’s Spring show. There was lots of easy movement here, from pleated and flared skirts paired with oversized jackets and large sunglasses to exquisitely crafted dresses with cross body bags. The pieces came in just about every material, tulle, silks and macrame, with prints including floral, tie dye and logos. If you want to be the epitome of a French fashion “It girl”, you’d do well to choose Christian Dior.

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Balmain was inspired by Egypt. It was highly creative, with oversized sleeves, metal bodices and mummy-like wrapped dresses. It also included hieroglyph details, distressed muslin, mixed material ensembles including denim and organza, with and sculptural shapes that were excellent. However, the runway felt a bit costume-y at times, which wasn’t really a bad thing, just that some pieces ended up looking like you’d sooner see them in a sci-fi film than among streetwear.

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Victoria + Tomas were the epitome of french fashion. Structured jackets, tassled hems, bold lines and a few standout iridescent dresses will make for an incredible summer wardrobe. Kenzo shared an on point collection. The popular snakeskin pattern of the season was elegantly paired with an array of colors, something that always strikes such impact, at least for me.

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A few that missed the mark for me were Thome Browne, Vivienne Westwood and Issey Miyake. It might be fun to showcase something wild on the runway, but ready to wear should be somewhat applicable to everyday life. Is anyone really jones-ing for an oversized watermelon hat? Asking for a friend…

Photos courtesy of Vogue

Milan Fashion Week Spring 2019

It was another successful fashion season in Milan. Not that we should ever expect anything different. Held September 19 to September 23, escape into the complexity and evolution of Milan Fashion Week. Full length show videos will be up shortly to see more of all the splendor.

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Sporty was the name of the game at Byblos. There was a great dress selection and bright separates. Favorites of mine were the jaunty and bright recycle sweaters. Jil Sander hit the mark once again in minimalism. Excellent layering and sensible without lacking a single iota of style. While minimal tastes crave black and white pieces, its still always fun to see a splash of color; especially with great fabric choices, like plisse.

Be still my fashion beating heart, Fendi has finally done it! Lagerfeld says its all about the giant pockets and inspired by streetwear. It was a diverse range of sleek items from sporty to boho in the most breathtaking, fabulous palette. (And the giant pockets worked swimmingly.)

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Mountainscapes, butterflies, swans, rainbows and all other kinds of sweetness was on point at Vivetta. Meanwhile, at Prada, the team created an exquisite mix including eastern motifs and trapeze dresses in satin,  chiffonand cashmere. I’ve seen reviews before saying they don’t get the point to be made, and I don’t think there is a point to get. Its great fashion that speaks for itself. The end.

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Emporio Armani shared a 200 look runway. Maybe a bit overzealous in numbers but still so entertaining as a fashion show. There was spellbinding elocution and high drama from start to finish. It included nods to the 70s, 80s and 90s. The collection started off in neutrals, grays and whites, and moved into navy before adding neon green, royal blue and electric pink. Fun notes included drawstring jackets, fringe collars and a nice dose of sequins!

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There was mindfulness, balance and a touch of wanderlust from Etro’s Spring Ready To Wear. The collection used surf and sport motifs inspired by the Pacific, from California to Hawaii to Japan in warm tones with a variety of shapes for whatever a summer day has in store. Versace was also full of color and hypnotic, although a bit capricious at times. The overall mischievous and amusing nature of the show, however made a good impression.

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Missoni’s iconic gossamer knit was woven into robes, cardigans, kimonos, tank tops, skirts and pants in patterns or plain color. A traveler energy built piece by piece in the collection’s cozy palette. Since the brand celebrated 65 years, this collection was meant to be something special. Dare I say it was, for the win.

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A few other favorites from Milan included Tods, a sleek coed collection in rustic colors and Ultrachic was cheerful, happy go lucky and of course, very chic.

London Fashion Week Spring 2019

 

We leave from NYC and all of its glamour to jump across the pond to London Fashion Week which was hosted September 14 to September 17. It’s sometimes easy to forget the elegant ease of London and all the wonder it really brings during fashion week. After all, we always hear about the Royals and Big Ben and other famous landmarks around London. But what tends to get lost in the shuffle is the unique style the city has. This fashion week didn’t disappoint on reminding us of just that. Join me as I review the great new looks for spring and enjoy all the full length videos from the shows!

Amanda Wakeley shared a safari inspired collection, a palette full of olives, cream and tan and accessories made of sheared kangaroo. That was a noted feature, though I’m not sure as to why. She will also have a 6 month pop up in Bicaster Village. Ashley Williams gave a shout out to the 80’s while Anya Hindmarch hosted a non runway with the largest bean bag, “the cloud” at Westminster Banquet House. It’s purpose was for patrons could talk and rest. But at one point a guest was photographed reading Dr. Seuss’s Green Eggs and Ham, so it was an ambiguous show to say the least. I recall completing circle time reading back in the second grade.

 

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Ports 1961 was full of ropes and ties, a nod to the nautical? It was unclear. The macrame and tiger print were fun touches to the collection though. Jenny Packham celebrated 30 years by highlighting the best of old Hollywood while Peter Pilotto shared influences of Polynesia. There was vibrancy and spirit, though a bit overwhelming at times, but had excellent shape. Form has played a large part in fashion this go around, which has been pleasant to see.

 

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Victoria Beckham had the perfect spring collection with splashes of color and distinguished form. The ensembles were breezy, ever posh (pun intended) and will whisk you away to long summer days. Preen by Thorton Bregazzi was nomadic…and a bit haphazard. Some shapes were better than others. The attitude was prominent however, throughout nylon, lame and frilly floral material choices, and that’s all I can ask.

 

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Shrimps brought its signature faux fur and created a charming motif complete with daffodils, which are significant to the designers and needlework bags that were delightful. Pringle of Scotland, known for their amazing knits , was really charming this season. I especially loved the block coloring and how the pieces all mixed and matched with each other. It really leaves one with endless possibilities of dress. Burberry was fairly lowkey, although a large debut, with 135 looks. Classic and luxurious notes were hit without missing a beat, the iconic plaid attire were some of my favorites.

 

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What are your thoughts from London Fashion Week? Share in the comments, and stay tuned as we head to Milan next!

NYFW Spring 2019 pt. 2

Continuing with a glimpse of the best in fashion, comes a second and final series of reviews from New York Fashion Week. Without further ado, let’s take a look. But don’t forget to tune back in for full length show videos!

 

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Romeo Hunte was named WWD’s 2016 designer to watch and its easy to see why. His spring 2019 collection was surfwear inspired collection with neoprene. There were highlighter colors, sequin emojis and faux fur trim, all brooklyn inspired. I saw some complaints that this collection was similar to his menswear showed in June and that with runways becoming more often coed why not just show them together. This is a fair point, but that’s also a lot of unnessecary pressure, especially if the company is focused on using a see now/buy now method.

 

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The Carolina Herrera runway had great skirts and plenty of different ways to wear them, but the winners were the gowns. There was a dress for any and every occasion. In an array of color from dreamy to practical, polka dot or floral, collared to off shoulder, pick a dress any dress; you might even want two.

 

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Veronica Beard showcased her collection in a greenhouse which I adored as a background. Plaids, lace leopard print and sequins were mixed and matched to create fresh and sharp combinations.

 

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Zero+Maria shared a relaxed presentation made with organic linen and denim that was certified gold. Gold certified means it’s made from organic cotton grown without synthetic fertilizers or pesticides, using the cleanest indigo-dyeing process available. (Thank you to Vogue for that specification.) This trendy, urban collection had great colors and was modeled by women of all ages, which was pretty poignant.

 

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Anna Sui was inspired by the 1955 film Kismet, that takes you to a grand bazaar in a far away land. The collection has a rich palette and plenty of spunk. Crushed velvet bucket hats to turbans, spirited tie dye, leather caftans with shell jewelry, hawaiian print tops and silk cowboy fringe buttondowns were all in the musing. Choose a chiffon or starfish embellished dress, paired with a fishermens vest and go explore somewhere. This line was perfection all the way down to the Tevas.

 

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Another travel inspired collection at New York Fashion Week came from Alice+ Olivia. Places and faces are what its all about. Trot around the globe to Paris, Provence, Marrakech, Positano, Careyes & Tokyo, wherever your heart wants to wander, really. The third eye clutch was spectacular.

 

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Naeem Khan Spring 2019 was a runway heavy on evening attire inspired by his heritage from traditional garments of India as well as popular looks of different eras. Fashions included single shouldered gowns with sweeping skirts, tasteful cutouts, plunging necklines, boxy shapes, ruffly capes and cold shoulders. The long sleeve minis were my favorite. There were a few unnessecary see through styles, but over all the collection had great color and a jaunty spirit.

 

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And cue the applause for Michael Kors. One thing that can get lost in fashion is fun and whimsy. Nyfw had many lines with a shortage of these qualities but MK delievered. He showcased outfits you want to wear from beach club totes to breezy multicolor skirts to eyelet dresses, even floral swim caps. Anything you might need is here, so color me happy. Whatever your summer wardrobe needs, Michael Kors has you covered. Just add sun and sand.

Photos courtesy of WWD

NYFW Spring 2019

It’s time for a fresh round of offerings in fashion, even though according to many in the press, fashion is dead. This notion has annoyed me every time I’ve seen it, but I haven’t been able to figure out why. If fashion doesn’t house entirely new thinking these days, I wonder how has it become more innovative then ever? It combines old and new while consumers, buyers and critics alike continue to anticipate and flock to its every season. Is it possible this demise simply could be revival? In exciting visual and material form, fashion is a captivating subject that’s always contained character; if nothing else. Whether the goal is to be up on the latest trend, wear the newest labels or simply aspire to look ones best, fashion gives us all a voice. And with a voice, we can connect. With all this being said, for an industry that’s allegedly dead, there is most certainly enough fuss, especially for fashion week.

We’re kicking off fashion month in New York City.

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Designers Shaikha Noor Al Khalifa and Shaikha Haya Al Khalifa of Noon by Noor payed homage to their home country Bahrain. They create a beatuiful ambiance in color, silhouette and shape. The dresses seemed light as a feather, the sweaters perfect for a crisp spring evening.

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Mara Hoffman had many of the ever popular coordinating sets, which I was thrilled to see. Balance in the construction of these garmemts was exceptional. Come visit to see a sustainable fashion brand, stay for the mesmerizing style.

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Pamella Roland’s spring collection was inspired by Bali and Indonesian architecture. The runway was full of texture and form in an array of vivid colors. From a pearl lined yellow suit to jacquard grecian style gowns, this show was far from ubiquitous, as we can always expect from Ms. Roland.

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Florals, plaids, silks, velvet and even an ombre rainbow created major contrast throughout the garden party of Vivenne Hu’s spring collection. Dainty in execution and strong in structure, this whimsical asemblage just brings a smile to your face. I loved the incorporation of the blazer dress, a style I hope to see much more of in the comimg season!

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Jason Wu held a ‘non runway’ show that showcased 16 looks meant to enhance not overpower. I thought this was a strong, timely statement that didn’t lack in playfulness, sensibility or craftsmanship.

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Feminine, powerful, graceful. This line from Taoray Wang doesn’t beg for attention it demands it. Almost every look was belted, whether by waist trainer, rope or..wait for it, a classic, albeit elogated, belt that created high drama. A mix of navy, pale pink & fushia purple with gray, beige and white accents created an enchanting runway with lots of attitude.

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Inspired by Brandon Maxwell’s Southern heritage, this collection was bursting with color. I loved the crisp edge, shiny jumpsuits, silky sets and couldn’t get enough of the scarves! The hat boxes were also a fun touch. It was very fresh, very big and very Texas. Also kudos to Lily Aldridge for walking 5 months pregnant!

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Sometimes it just comes down to details. The minimalistic, wearable collection from Tibi was such a treat. The styles came in an array of colors that weren’t overwhelming to the eye while playing with trends, such as the longline blazer and fusing elements, like gender neutral attire. How soon until the Spring Equinox? Or more importantly, how soon until the line is in stores? Marking my calendar.

Stay tuned for more from NYFW coming shortly!

Photos courtesy of Livingly, UK Fashion Network, Vogue & WWD

Hanging vs. Folding In Your Closet

You want your clothes to last as long as possible, and how items are stored can have a lot of impact on them. Some garments look their best when hung on hangers while others benefit from being folded. Here is a quick guide on what is best for certain items, and hopefully this guide will help make the most out of closet space, while extending the life of your favorite pieces!

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What to hang:

Dresses

Blouses & Button downs

Suits

Coats

Scarves

Shirts and blouses made from linen, rayon and 100% cotton will stay wrinkle free when hung on hangers. Padded hangers are a good option for silks, satins, velvet, chiffon and taffeta.

Jackets, overcoats, suit jackets and blazers, as well as skirts and trousers hang well on rods of wooden hangers or by clip/clamp hangers. For bars, layer a piece of fabric, like felt or velvet, even an old tshirt, so clothing doesn’t become damaged over time.

Sweaters can be folded or draped over a bar of a wood hanger with a piece of tissue paper in between.

Dresses and jumpsuits can be hung. Evening gowns however, depending on heaviness of fabric and embellishments can be distorted. Carefully fold them in tissue paper and store in a cool, dry place.

Don’t cut the loops off daydresses, they’re meant to hang the garment by! This will help reduce stretching in the shoulder.

Keep top button on blouses closed when hanging a buttondown to keep collar intact.

*Avoid wire hangers if possible. They can distort natural shape of clothing and leave unsightly markings where they dented the fibers.

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What to fold:
Tshirts

Knitwear & Sweaters

Jeans

Cords

Khaki’s & Cargos

Evening gowns

Undergarments

Scarves can be folded or hung. If hung, fold in half and hang them over the flat edge of a hanger.

Hangers will stretch out t-shirt collars, so keep them folded and stored in a drawer.

Knitwear generally will not wrinkle when folded. Just remember to air out wools.

Pants like jeans, corduroy, khakis and cargo are made of durable fabrics that tend not to wrinkle. They can be hung, but its not necessary. Do what’s best for utilizing your closet space.

 

Information from Martha Stewart Living, Oct 2000

Garment Care

Caring for clothes can be difficult. Below are some tips to get the best results out of a few different methods and which ones work best for certain items and materials. Simply altering how you do laundry can improve life of your favorite items, and who doesn’t want that?!

Laundering methods

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Machine washing is the easiest care for clothes. Run items through recommended cycle on the label or based on fiber content. To keep fabric from tangling. And twisting more, delicate items can be placed in a mesh bag or zippered pillowcase to protect them. Machine dry after wash, just be mindful about heat setting. Clothes can wrinkle and fade if heat is too high. Clothing can also be dried by being hung on a clothesline or drying rack, being allowed to drip dry.

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Hand washing is a more gently option for fibers that can become agitated otherwise in a washing machine. This method is more time consuming. Fill a tub or sink with cool or lukewarm water and about a teaspoon of gentle detergent. Squeeze water through the fabric, Avoid scrubbing or twisting actions that can stretch or damage the fabric. Gently swish the garment through the sudsy water until the item is clean. Drain the tub or sink, and fill with water. Rinse until suds are gone. Squeeze out water, don’t wring and allow to air dry on a clothesline. Never spot treat silk material when hand washing.

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Dry cleaning isn’t actually a dry process. Instead of water, fabrics are immersed solvents. Solvents don’t bind fibers the way water does so garments maintain shape and texture. This is a good option for crisper materials like linen, so material won’t soften like it might with machine or hand washing. There are also products available that simulate this method for use in your dryer at home.

Steam pressing is an effective way to get wrinkles out of almost any fabric and it takes less time and effort than ironing does. Plus, there are plenty of other benefits. It kills odor-causing bacteria, keeping clothes fresh in between washes. This is perfect for items that you can’t wash frequently (or at all), or are dry-clean only. It also works on drapes, upholstery, mattresses, pillows, carpeting and more, so you can get more use out of a steam press. Along with killing bacteria, steaming also removes allergens that attract dust mites. Since steaming only uses water and no detergents or other chemicals, it won’t pollute the air. Ideal fabrics for steaming? Wool, wool blends, synthetic wool-like fabrics, cashmere, silk, silk blends, and other delicates. I was unfamiliar with this method, but definitely would like to try it! Has anyone had experience with steam pressing? Below are a few other tips to keep in mind when using this method.

  • Fabrics to avoid: suede, waxed jackets and anything plastic—it might melt.
  • Steam any sort of lining first, and always steam items from top to bottom.
  • Don’t attempt to steam anything while you’re wearing it.
  • Steamers should not be pressed onto clothing!

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Becoming familiar with these symbols can help you care for your clothing and other fabric based items in the best way possible!

Here are a few extra tips in caring for your clothing:

  • Sweaters in a cotton blend should be washed on a gentle cycle. Many knits made of cotton, synthetics, or blends can be machine-washed in cold or warm water on the gentle cycle with all-purpose or mild detergent. To combat wrinkles and stiffness, dry items on low for 5 to 10 minutes before laying them flat on a mesh sweater rack or a towel.
  • Hats and gloves can be treated with the same method as sweaters. Hand wash any items with leather trimming.
  • Swimsuits should be hand washed to avoid damaging elasticity.
  • Air dry bras to prevent damage to under wires and straps.
  • Linen absorbs more water during the washing process than other fibers, so watch what you wash with this material.
  • Avoid chlorine bleach and hot water on spandex, a material often found in sports gear. It will damage the fibers.
  • Never lose a sock again! Attach a pair together using a safety pin. This will save time sorting later too!

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Man made and plant based fibers can usually be machine washed and tumbled dried at low to medium temperatures, but animal fibers like wool, cashmere and silk should be dry cleaned. Always check the label for best care recommendations.

Summer Skincare

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Summer is in full swing here in Arizona, with temperatures already hitting 100 degrees. I’m lounging by the pool as often as I can and dreaming of a trip to the beach. Hopefully I will take advantage of a few of these carefree days while I still have them and get some salty air!

Anyway, before my story bores everyone to tears, as the season change, so does the beauty routine. Summer’s long, sunny days in chlorinated or salty water not to mention all other kinds of outdoor activities that can take a toll on our bodies. As much as I love to soak up rays, to look my best during these hottest months and protect my skin, I use a handful of tricks to keep it looking and feeling amazing all summer long. It’s important to show your skin some love! I love being tan, but I’ve learned the importance of sun care. The good news is it’s not time consuming or hard at all.

Preparation

Before you head into the sunshine simply by exfoliating to gently scrub away old cells and ready skin for vitamin D. Smooth skin will absorb that protective layer of sunscreen. Don’t worry about expensive products, you can make a simple sugar scrub that will do the trick! (You can even check out a recipe I created in DIY.) You can rub it on your arms and legs then wipe down with a wet washcloth. (It will also stimulate blood flow to help remove toxins.) Apply sunscreen 15 minutes before heading out into sunshine.

Who Needs Sunscreen?

Everyone! Sunscreen use can help prevent skin cancer by protecting you from the sun’s harmful ultraviolet rays. Anyone can get skin cancer, regardless of age, gender or race. In fact, it is estimated that one in five Americans will develop skin cancer in their lifetime.

The American Academy of Dermatology recommends everyone use sunscreen that offers the following:

  • Broad-spectrum protection (protects against UVA and UVB rays)
  • SPF 30 or higher
  • Water resistance

But do I really need a high SPF?

UV radiation reaches the earth in the form of UVB and UVA rays. Thus, higher SPFs can help, although there is not a significant difference in a high SPF. An SPF 15 sunscreen blocks 93 percent of UVB radiation, while SPF 30 sunscreen blocks nearly 97 percent. Furthermore, higher SPF values offer some safety margin, since consumers generally do not apply enough sunscreen. It is also important to remember that high-number SPFs last the same amount of time as low-number SPFs. A high-number SPF does not allow you to spend additional  time outdoors without reapplication. All sunscreens should be applied approximately every two hours or according to time on the label, even on cloudy days, and after swimming or sweating.

A sunscreen that offers the above helps to protect your skin from sunburn, early skin aging and skin cancer. However, sunscreen alone cannot fully protect you. In addition to wearing sunscreen, dermatologists recommend taking the following steps to protect your skin and find skin cancer early:

  • Seek shade when appropriate, remembering that the sun’s rays are strongest between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. If your shadow is shorter than you are, seek shade.
  • Wear protective clothing, such as a long-sleeved shirt, pants, a wide-brimmed hat and sunglasses, when possible.
  • Use extra caution near water, snow and sand as they reflect the damaging rays of the sun, which can increase your chance of sunburn.
  • Get vitamin D safely through a healthy diet that may include vitamin supplements. Don’t seek the sun.
  • Avoid tanning beds. Ultraviolet light from the sun and tanning beds can cause skin cancer and wrinkling. If you want to look tan, you may wish to use a self-tanning product, but continue to use sunscreen with it.
  • Check your birthday suit on your birthday. If you notice anything changing, itching or bleeding on your skin, see a board-certified dermatologist. Skin cancer is highly treatable when caught early.

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Broad-spectrum sunscreens protect against both UVA and UVB rays. What is the difference between the rays?

Sunlight consists of two types of harmful rays that reach the earth — UVA rays and UVB rays. Overexposure to either can lead to skin cancer. In addition to causing skin cancer, here’s what each of these rays do:

  • UVA rays (or aging rays) can prematurely age your skin, causing wrinkles and age spots, and can pass through window glass.
  • UVB rays (or burning rays) are the primary cause of sunburn and are blocked by window glass.

The United States Department of Health & Human Services and the World Health Organization’s International Agency of Research on Cancer have declared UV radiation from the sun and artificial sources, such as tanning beds and sun lamps, as a known carcinogen (cancer-causing substance). 

So what type of sunscreen should I use?

The best type of sunscreen is the one you will use again and again.  Just make sure it offers broad-spectrum (UVA and UVB) protection, has an SPF of 30 or higher and is water resistant.

The kind of sunscreen you use is a matter of personal choice, and may vary depending on the area of the body to be protected. Available sunscreen options include lotions, creams, gels, ointments, wax sticks and sprays.

  • Creams are best for dry skin and the face.
  • Gels are good for hairy areas, such as the scalp or male chest.
  • Sticks are good to use around the eyes.
  • Sprays are sometimes preferred by parents since they are easy to apply to children. Make sure to use enough of these products to thoroughly cover all exposed skin. Do not inhale these products or apply near heat, open flame or while smoking. It is important to note that current FDA regulations on testing and standardization do not pertain to spray sunscreens. The agency continues to evaluate these products to ensure safety and effectiveness.
  • There also are sunscreens made for specific purposes, such as for sensitive skin and babies.

*Some sunscreen products are also available as combination products in moisturizers and cosmetics. While these products are convenient, they also need to be reapplied in order to achieve the best sun protection.

*Sunscreen retains its sun protection strength for up to three years, however if a bottle has an expiration date, it should be followed. Otherwise just be sure to look for visible signs that it may no longer be good. Change in color, consistency or odor of the product mean it’s time to toss it and purchase a new bottle.

Moisturize & Hydrate

There is no safe way to tan. Every time you tan, you damage your skin. As this damage builds, you speed up the aging of your skin and increase your risk for all types of skin cancer.

So a tan is a burn that you want to care for well. Post-tan, you’ll want to hit the shower and run some cool water on your skin. It will help with redness and irritation while also avoiding that pesky peeling of any remaining dead skin cells. Hot water would just continue to dehydrate skin. Now you can apply moisturizer or aloe vera to thirsty skin and it will be replenished properly with nutrients. You’ll want to look for a moisturizer that has soothing ingredients that will reduce redness and inflammation like the above mentioned aloe vera, geranium oil, oatmeal and green tea. Keep in mind allergies you might have or ingredients that could be irritating to your skin to avoid any discomfort. Pop lotion in the fridge for cool application as well!

*You’ll want to continue moisturizing in the following days to keep replenishing skin, especially if you are out in the sun daily. Fake a tan with bronzer, just try to keep it with a shade or 2 of your natural skin tone so it’s not obvious…or orange in appearance.

*Also remember your hair can dry out and become damaged in the sun too! A gentle and effective trick is to dab a little hydrating shampoo to your scalp with cool water. Make sure to bring a cute hat with you on outdoor adventures! Have a safe and fun summer!

Information gathered from American Academy of Dermatology