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Life Update: New Job, New Home, New Car

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I’d be lying if I said the past few months have been a breeze for me. Life has been pretty hectic lately, but finally things are starting to settle into place.

Let’s start from the beginning: Recently I graduated from college at Middle Tennessee State University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism. Almost immediately, I moved back home to be closer to family after my grandfather was diagnosed with cancer. I hadn’t really planned on moving back home before, but it’s been nice to see everyone and has made it much easier to plan my wedding.

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“Outfit of the Week – Maxi Dress Daydream” post at platosclosetpreferred.com (Photo: taken by Briar Burkhead and edited by Emily Austin)
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Photo: taken by Briar Burkhead and edited by Emily Austin

At the end of May, I landed a job as the Social Media Editor at the Plato’s Closet in Jackson, TN. As Editor, I’ve taken over all their social media including Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest (soon there will also be a Snapchat!) I also launched their first fashion blog called Plato’s Closet Fashion Preferred. Most of my time has been devoted to growing it, which is why this blog has become so neglected.

Although I’m pretty  bummed I haven’t gotten to work much on my personal blog lately, I’m also thrilled to have this opportunity. It’s been exciting getting to work with clothes and get paid to write from home!  As someone who shopped for four years at Plato’s Closet to afford cute clothes during college, this is more than just any store for me. Where else can you find all your favorite brands at a cheap price all at one place?

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Vogue magazines featured on the Plato’s Closet Jackson, TN Instagram. Follow us at @platosclosetjacksontn. (Photo by: Emily Austin)
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Boots you can purchase at the Plato’s Closet store in Jackson, TN that were featured on our Instagram (Photo by: Emily Austin)

While the job is great, I had trouble finding a place to live for a while. After college, my fiancé and I moved in at my Mom’s until we could find a place to rent. Unfortunately that took longer than we expected. The rental company that owns all the good houses here wouldn’t let us rent from them, because we own a German Shepherd. Apparently they’re a “dangerous breed.” I know. I felt they should have been willing to meet my dog before saying I can’t rent any of the homes. Through sheer luck, we met a woman who was moving out of her home and willing to rent it out to us. We’ve been living here for a little over a week now and it feels so nice to have my own space again!

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The viscous beast that rental properties cower away from (Photo by: Briar Burkhead)

On Monday, I also got a new car (pre-owned actually, but what-ev’s because it’s amazing.) As if my life hasn’t been hectic enough, my old car decided to to stop running. It would have cost more to fix than it was worth, so my fiancé and I decided to be grown ups and get a good car. It’s safe to say that I’m in love with it<3

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A 2015 Nissan Sentra that my fiancé and I recently got.

Things are starting to settle down… a little bit. Lately, I’ve been working on customizing my wedding dress. In November, I’ll be photographing my first wedding for a coworker and in mid October I’ll be getting my own engagement photos done. I know both are going to look so beautiful in the fall weather! If the wedding photography that I’m doing for my coworker goes well, I’m considering opening up myself for hire as a photographer. I know that I’ll need more practice and better lenses, but everyone has to start somewhere!

This year has been a crazy one for me and will probably continue to be. However, I’m hoping I can figure out a schedule so I can begin updating this blog regularly again. If you’re interested in regular fashion content, please subscribe to the Plato’s Closet blog. The maxi dress photos were a part of a post that I did there and the boots and vogue pictures are from the Instagram. Here are a few more photos of what you can expect:

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An upcoming Outfit of the Week post that will be featured on platosclosetpreferred.com (Photo: taken by Briar Burkhead and edited by Emily Austin)
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“Outfit of the Week – Fashionably Floral” featured on platosclosetpreferred.com (Photo: taken by Briar Burkhead and edited by Emily Austint
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Photo: taken by Briar Burkhead and edited by Emily Austin

On a side note, aren’t you guys just loving the Pokemon Go app? It’s safe to say that I’m obsessed with it. It’s been doing a pretty good job at keeping me occupied while I wait for Sun and Moon to come out in November. I found a Snorlax one day while I was at Walmart. How hilarious and perfect is that?

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What’s you favorite Pokemon that you’ve caught or are wanting to catch?

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Maybelline Eyebrows and Contour palettes

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Something that I always feel is lacking from my makeup drawer is a nice palette. When you can’t afford luxury makeup brands and are forced to regularly shop drugstore products, it can be pretty hard to find much more than an eyeshadow palette. Lately I’ve noticed that Maybelline has been killing it with their newest products. My favorites as of late are the Brow Drama Pro Palette and the Master Contour by FaceStudio.

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The brow kit is a dream and has officially changed my eyebrow game. This set comes with wax (far left) and two powders. I begin by using the wax to shape my eyebrows and then begin filling them in with the middle shade. The wax isn’t sticky or clumpy and ensures the hairs stay in place. Finally, I use the highlight shade to help shape my eyebrows.

boho-closeup The Brow Drama Pro Palette has an ample amount of color options, coming in the shades blonde, auburn, soft brown and deep brown. My hair is naturally blonde, meaning my eyebrows look almost nonexistent whenever I don’t fill them in. Naturally, I bought my bro palette in the blonde shade and although the colors look fairly dark, the shade is a perfect fit for me. It blends in nicely with the natural color of my brows and comes out looking slightly darker  than my hair.

Although this product is nice on its own, I also like to apply the Maybelline Brow Drama Sculpting Brow Mascara in the shade blonde. I do this to make sure they stay in place, but mostly because it makes them darker and I’m really into bold brows.

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The only problem I found was that the palette I bought had the brushes missing from it. Although I rarely use the brushes included in makeup, it’s something to look out for in case that’s important to you.

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Another goody from Maybelline is the Master Contour by FaceStudio. I’ve been using this palette in my everyday makeup routine, because the shades are perfect for my complexion. Not only are my eyebrows ridiculously blonde, but I’m also so pale that I might as well be see through. This palette comes in two shades: light to medium and medium to deep.

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After contouring, I finish by applying the blush to the apples of the cheeks and highlighting on my cheekbones, cupids bow and nose. This product is pigmented and easy to blend, leaving the skin looking natural and sun kissed. The highlight in particular is stunning and the color isn’t too sparkly.

As far as drugstore makeup goes, Maybelline is one of my go to’s. Their products have consistently impressed me and I know that I can usually rely on them to meet my needs. What’s one of your favorite drugstore makeup brands? Suggestions?

~Nilla

 

 

 

 

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Boho vibes and flower crowns

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Photo credit: Briar Burkhead

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I’ve never actually been to a music festival before, but I would imagine this is something I would wear if I bothered to go to one. This dress (find something similar here) has become a favorite of mine recently, as it gives off this 70s flower child vibe. It’s a faux suede with billowy sleeves and it flows beautifully. When I first bought it from Plato’s Closet (yes I know, I have an obsession) the inner child in me couldn’t help twirling around to watch the skirt fan out.

Continue reading “Boho vibes and flower crowns”

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Thrift Find: Funky Zigzag Sweater

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Photo’s by Briar Burkhead

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Another day, another favorite thrift find. I’m all for having quality pieces in my wardrobe, but sometimes thrifting is the best way to find unique items (especially at low prices). This pink sweater is something I found at Goodwill and I can’t get over how cute and comfy it is. The zig zag patterns across it remind me of the funky patterns often associated with 90’s clothing. I mean, who can forget all those crazy colored triangle patterns?

Continue reading “Thrift Find: Funky Zigzag Sweater”

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Update: I’m engaged!

I know it’s been a while since my last blog post and I’ve come to realize that I need to better prioritize my time throughout the day. My classes and workload started to get hectic and balancing that along with work tends to be difficult. Excuses aside, a few exciting things have happened since then. The most notable: On February 28th I got engaged!

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My fiancé Briar and I have been together for four years, some of the beginning long distance when I moved off for college. Although we’ve talked about marriage in the past, I wasn’t expecting it whatsoever that day. It was truly unexpected, but nonetheless I couldn’t be more thrilled! We’ve decided to have our wedding next year, probably on May 6th.

Continue reading “Update: I’m engaged!”

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Favorite Drugstore Products

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I can’t tell you how many hours of my life I’ve probably wasted sitting at a computer adding things to a growing wishlist. It’s just like window shopping. I look and add it to my list hoping to one day buy it, but rarely ever go back to actually purchase it. I’m not at a time in my life where I can afford to get a $50 eyeshadow or contour palette. However, my boyfriend and I have waited to give each other Christmas presents so we can afford to treat each other out to a shopping trip. Soon I’ll be taking that long awaited trip to Sephora to get all the products I’ve been drooling over.

Until then, I thought I would give you guys a look at some drugstore products I’ve been loving lately. I have yet to find a favorite concealer that I thought could make this list, so if you have any suggestions please let me know in the comments!

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Maybelline Fit me! Dewy + Smooth Foundation | $7.99: This lightweight foundation is for normal to dry skin. It’s hydrating formula gives the skin a soft dewy complexion, which I think is perfect for my skin during the colder months.

elf Flawless Finish Foundation | $6: When I want something a little different, lately I’ve been turning to this thicker, yet still lightweight foundation that gives the skin a semi-matte finish. One flaw I would give it, however, is that it only comes in a few colors so color matching might be difficult. I have a pale complexion and found that the shade porcelain worked well for me.

Maybelline Fit me! Set + Smooth Powder | $7.99: For setting my foundation, I use the Fit Me! powder, which offers good coverage and a nice finish. It’s for normal to dry skin and doesn’t feel cakey when applied.

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Covergirl TruBlend Loose Mineral Bronzer: This bronzer blends well and reflects light and does have a bit of shimmer to it. However, it isn’t over the top and looks more natural and sun kissed. It doesn’t take much to bronze the skin, so I like to put a little on my brush and tap off the excess before blending it along my temples, cheekbones and neck.

Real Techniques Tapered Blush Brush | $23.99: This is the priciest item on the list, but so worth it! This brush is from the bold metals collection and I love the rose gold look of it. So far I only own two, this one and the flat contour brush. The bristles on this blush brush are soft and sculpt the cheeks nicely, but I prefer it more for highlighting.

Eyes

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Maybelline The Blushed Nudes Palette | $9.99: When I first saw this in the store, I can’t express to you how thrilled I was. The colors looked beautiful and reminded me a lot of the Naked 3 palette. While the colors are obviously not as pigmented, this is still a good dupe considering how affordable it is. The palette offers 12 shades in beautiful rose gold tones.

Maybelline Master Precise Liquid Eyeliner | $7.99: I typically use liquid eyeliner most days, because I love myself a nice winged line. Out of the many drugstore eyeliners I’ve used, this has been my favorite. It’s easy to apply and has a nice thin brush to offer clean and precise lines.

Lips and Nails

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Left to right: Rimmel lipliner shade nude, Rimmel Kate Moss shade 14, Baby Lips Crystal Kiss, Baby Lips Lip Gloss shade Taupe with Me

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Rimmel London Lasting Finish 1000 Kisses Lipliner in shade Nude | $3.99

Rimmel London Lasting Finish Lipstick in shade 14 | $5.49: For a nice nude lip, I have been using these two products. They glide on smoothly and the color goes with absolutely everything. The lipstick is from the Kate Moss collection, which I’ve been obsessing over. It’s comfortable to wear and lasts for several hours without need for reapplication. I’m in love!

Baby Lips Crystal in shade Crystal Kiss | $4.49: When I don’t feel like wearing lipstick, but I want something lightweight, hydrating and gives my lips a nice tint, I often turn to Baby Lips. The packaging is so cute and this crystal edition that has sparkles in it speaks to the child within me who carried around sparkly lipgloss in her “fur trimmed” Kool-aid purse (Did anyone else go through that purse fad in fifth grade?)

Baby Lips Moisturizing Lip Gloss shade Taupe with Me | $4.49: Again, the packaging is adorable and this gloss offers a nice pink sheen.

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eos Coconut Milk Lip Balm | $3.49: These lip balms are every where and a favorite of many for obvious reasons. The packaging is nice and unique and nourishes the lips. I have to say my favorite so far would be in Vanilla Mint, but unfortunately my German Shepherd chewed it up so I’ve been using this one instead.

Essie Nail Polish in shade Wicked and Smokin’ Hot | $8.50: There’s something about a purple nail polish that just makes me love it so much. It’s the color I most gravitate towards and these are my favorite. I really enjoy Wicked, because it’s a beautiful red/purple vampy color that truly lives up to its name.

I hope you enjoyed this post and found new drugstore products to add to your makeup bag! What are some of your drugstore favorites?

~Nilla

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Style Guru Bio at CollegeFashionista

Every new year, I struggle to come up with a resolution that I’ll likely ditch within a month or two. Usually it’s something like “eat clean” or “do more cardio.” This year is different, because I decided to focus on something I actually care about: my passion for sharing my thoughts on fashion, beauty and lifestyle.

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All photo credit: Briar Burkhead

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Lately, I haven’t been super active on my blog thanks to end of the semester finals and visiting my family for the holidays. But I have big plans and I’m excited to get started on them! Not only do I want to add different content on my blog and post more frequently, but I’m also going to be starting my YouTube channel in the next few months (a few more pieces of equipment I have to get first.)

This is something I’ve been wanting to do for about two years and I’m finally going to tackle it. Keep a look out, because as soon as my first video is up I’ll post it here.

Continue reading “Style Guru Bio at CollegeFashionista”

Students using the weight room at the Recreation Center in between classes. (Photo: Emily Austin)

8 Simples Ways MTSU Students Can Live Healthier Lifestyles

Note: This is an article that I wrote for the print edition of the college newspaper Sidelines at MTSU. 

Most college students tend to live unhealthy lifestyles. We sit in classes all day, stare at a computer for hours cranking out our research papers, stuff our faces with pizza, and then sleep for about five hours before doing it all over again. Let’s not even discuss what the weekends look like.

Research anything about college health, and you’re likely to find a plethora of articles warning about “The Freshman 15.” While this is a proven myth, college students are still at an increased risk of getting cancer and other health problems later in life, according to a 2014 study by Northwestern Medicine and Northeastern Illinois University.

Here are some tips on how you can lead a healthier lifestyle despite a busy schedule:

1. Drink more water. 

Angela Ramos, an MTSU professor who coordinates yoga, Pilates, tai chi and activity dance, said, “Don’t drink your calories. Most people go over their calorie intake because of drinks. If you want something sugary, you can either have a dessert every once in a while or a soda, but most people do both.”

Continue reading “8 Simples Ways MTSU Students Can Live Healthier Lifestyles”