beauty

A SUNSCREEN SAFE FOR SENSITIVE + DARKER SKIN EXISTS?!

I will confess – I am not a regular sunscreen wearer. I have tried many different types over the years but some either have broken me out or leave a ghostly cast on my face that doesn’t look natural. I related to this post, Glossier, founder, CEO and all-around beauty inspiration, Emily Weiss wrote so much. I thought I was alone in the SPF struggle.

Welcome, Glossier Invisible Shield. I have had this product for a while thanks to the nice girls at Glossier but have waited to write this post to really make sure the sunscreen did not break me out and wore well.


I have the most sensitive skin – many products break me out in some form of allergic reaction but this passed the test! I have layered with make-up and no white cast — it’s simply amazing.

A lot of people with darker skin like mine don’t always think they need to wear a sunscreen as we are not the ones burning on the beach but that is not the case! A sunscreen isn’t just for the beach – it’s literally SUN day — every day!

As every skin is so different, I would test it out for yourselves and see how you like it. It has a SPF level of 35 so is perfect for daily use and has been part of my daily routine.

Thanks for making another revolutionary product, Glossier!

P.S. — They just launched Wowder (best name ever?) last week and I am so excited that I got my hands on it, will have a review coming soon!

Shop it, here.

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THE PERFECT EVERYDAY LIP

I don’t know how many times I’ve searched for the perfect nude, everyday lipstick.

It is so hard finding the right balance of pink and warm tones that work well for not only my skin tone but every day wear.

I’m constantly looking for a lip color I can wear on a daily basis for an easy, fresh face.

And then you finally find it…behold, Laura Mercier’s Lip Colour Sheer in Bare Lips.

The name alone is perfection. It goes on so smooth, almost like a lip balm. So many lipsticks are not moisturizing and really dry out your lips — but not this one my friends. It glides on so easy and has the right amount of color that lasts all day! I promise!

I love wearing this lipstick alone for a subtle pink hue or lately I’ve been using it as a a base for other lip colors. The soft pink shade evens out the tone of my lips making any lip color I layer on top, really pop.

I highly recommend this lipstick because when you find the right one with the exact balance of rosy pink, nude tone and moisture you can’t just keep it to yourself!

Shop the color, here.

You’re welcome,

Syma

 

GET THE GLOW…EVEN IN WINTER

Can winter be over already?

I don’t know about you but I’m over these freezing temps! But just because it’s dark and dreary out doesn’t mean your skin has to be.

It is possible to achieve a glow that will reminisce of your summer days with a few key products.

I was at brunch with a few friends over the weekend post snow storm and my friend Sophia admired my highlighter. I obviously had to get a pic and it inspired me to share a post with you all on what I use to achieve the look. See below 🙂

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PAT MCGRATH SKIN FETISH 003 in GOLDEN I have Instagram to thank for this purchase. World renowned make-up artist, Pat McGrath launched her own makeup line a few months back and I saw this highlighter teased out on Instagram by some of my favorite It Girls. I’m all about any product that helps you achieve that J.Lo glow so I had to have it. I immediately texted my make-up artist friend, Kendall because I knew she’d want this product as much as I did! So grateful to have a make-up obsessed friend like her because she was able to order it for me as it sold out so quickly and could barely make it in my cart! What’s cool about this product is that it has two ends on the stick –a balm to achieve a dewiness, a golden hue and then an illuminating powder to set the highlight stick with a special edition brush that comes with the kit. A little goes a long way  — I like above my cheek bone and on the brow bone.

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NARS BLUSH in GINA + DEEP THROAT – This is my everyday blush combo I am sharing with you all, you’re welcome. I wanted a matte peachy blush forever ago and came across this shade by Nars called Gina. However, that wasn’t enough. I needed a touch of sheen that wasn’t over the top shimmery to layer on top which resulted in the perfect pink shade called ‘Deep Throat’. It’s a toned down version of the favorite ‘Orgasm’ and it looks good on everyone. You’ll adore this combo – trust me.

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I complete this look with a simple neutral lip color. I love Laura Mercier’s lip sheen in “Bare Lips”. Not only does it give a touch of rose sheen but is super moisturizing – win-win!

Hope these tips will not only brighten your skin but your day!

Xo,

Syma

 

Welcome to The Glossier Penthouse

I’ve been a fan of Into The Gloss for as long as I can remember and think Emily Weiss, the creator, is a genius and major #girlBOSS. I was fan-girling out when Into The Gloss launched their beauty line, Glossier.  Scrolling through Instagram this past weekend, I saw that the Glossier Penthouse was open once again to show off their latest collection. I texted my best girlfriends and made a day of it!

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From the Phase 1 collection, I own the Perfecting Skin Tint and Balm Dot Calm (best name ever) so I was excited to see the latest products up close and in-person. If you’re in NYC and a beauty lover like me, I highly suggest you check out the space! First off, it’s beautiful. Located in Soho, the penthouse is beautifully decorated with insane natural light, an amazing terrace, clean white counter-tops, touches of the signature Glossier pink from it’s packaging and a model-filled mood board. I was also obsessed with the hip hop jams playing while I was testing beauty products. Basically, me living the dream.Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset

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I can never pass up a new lipstick, so I immediately focused on the new lip stains featured in the new collection called, _Generation G. This is the perfect everyday lip. It goes on like a balm but wears like a lip stain. The color is sheer but can build to the intensity you want. I chose the ‘Crush’ shade which is a stunning berry pink. This color is totally universal and looks amazing on a variety of skin tones. I rocked it the next day and got a ton of compliments. Definitely a great way to start a Monday. Be sure to check out all four shades.Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset

Another fun new addition to the Glossier family is the Stretch Concealer. It wears very smooth and easy to apply. Not cakey or flat and gives a nice dewy finish – ideal for under eyes and to offer some brightness which everyone needs in their life.

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I’m not one to pencil-in my brows but I’ve heard awesome things about the ‘Boy Brow’ if you want to get your Cara Delevingne on. This wonder wand is also part of the Phase 2 kit and is a great way to make your brows stand out. I also left the penthouse with one more purchase, The _Priming Moisturizer. I tried a dab on my hand and it felt incredibly soft — I basically wanted to buy 10 bottles for my entire body but I settled on one for now.

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The girls in the showroom were so helpful and it was so fun talking beauty with them as they are just as obsessed as I am. Definitely check the space out if you’re in the New York area, I know they will be open again this coming weekend. Find out more on their Instagram, here.

THE BEST DRUGSTORE MATTE LIPGLOSSES

 

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All yours for under $15.00.

Having #KylieLipKit FOMO? We’ve all been there. Even if you’re not following Kylie Jenner — I’m sure you have heard of The Kylie Lip Kit.

We might have to blame Instagram, but beauty fanatics everywhere know all we want in our make-up bag right now is a matte lipgloss. However, the Kylie Lip Kit isn’t so easy to get our hands on so I’ve found the next best thing. Actually, the next best three things…

On a recent trip to Chicago, my sister and I went a little lip gloss crazy at Ulta — we tend to get very excited not only when we see each other but when we hit the make-up aisle at any drugstore.

My top three matte lip gloss brands ranked?

#1 – L ‘Oreal

What is hilarious is that I saw the L’Oreal Pro-Matte Lipgloss promoted on Nylon.com and took a screenshot and sent it to my sisters the week before. Just a few hours later, I received snapchats from both of them with the new gloss — they had purchased that day! As you can tell, beauty obsession runs in the family. The L’Oreal definitely feels the best on and gives you an instant pop of color. You really only need one swipe and you’re golden for the day. That’s right — after a few hours I didn’t need to reapply. I love ‘Statement Nude’ in this line — it’s a rosey nude shade that is perfect for everyday wear.

#2 – Maybelline

The Maybelline Vivid Matte Liquid is a close second. I purchased “Nude Thrill” and I have no regrets. The perfect mix of brown with a hint of pink so it doesn’t completely wash me out.

#3 – NYX  

And last but certainly not least, NYX Soft Matte Lip Creams. I picked up Abu Dhabi and Tokyo. I would definitely say these are the best ones to mix other lip colors with. Abu Dhabi is also closest to the signature Kylie “Dolce K” lip color. These glide on super smooth but aren’t completely matte. They offer insane color so I like mixing them when you want to brighten or darken a shade.

Each lipgloss is under $15.00, there’s no reason not to try them all! I highly recommend.

Can’t wait to see your matte lip selfies!

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FALL MUST-HAVE: THE BUTTON-FRONT SKIRT

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This is the skirt that is clogging your Instagram feed and the skirt you need to update your fall wardrobe!

The button-front skirt is everywhere – from denim to suede it’s the perfect way to work in this 70’s flashback into our wardrobes.

I am a denim kind of girl. Jeans, jackets, high-waisted, chambray shirts — it’s a way of life really. However this skirt is not the one you rocked in the early 2000’s when you paired it with your favorite fleece sweatshirt and Uggs — don’t worry!

There’s a reason you keep seeing it — it’s one very versatile piece!

I decided to style this skirt from American Eagle Outfitters with one of my favorite tops I purchased a few months back from Zara.

I’ve really been loving the off-the-shoulder trend since last Spring and I’m excited to see it transition into fall.

I tucked in my blouse from Zara and added this cool western-inspired concho belt (also from AE :)) + my fun sunnies to channel my inner 70’s ‘It Girl’.

You can definitely have fun this season with the 70’s trend — whether it’s a fun button-front skirt, suede jacket or a bit of fringe (all coming soon to the blog!) take a bit of the era and mix it in with you wardrobe and you’ll be right on trend!

Xo,

Syma

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Photos by Allison Schaller

Queue Drake?

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TOP: Zara

SKIRT: American Eagle Outfitters

EYEWEAR: Forever 21, similar here

HOW TO MAKE YOUR DREAM BLOW-OUT LAST

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There’s something about getting your hair blown out that makes you feel so incredible. I’m always amazed by how the stylist can get my hair so smooth with simply a round-brush and a blow-dryer. I have naturally wavy hair so it’s never as sleek and smooth when I’ve attempted to do it myself but when when I’ve gotten my hair done at Dream Dry I’m literally blown away. Dream Dry is co-owned by celebrity stylist and fashion icon Rachel Zoe — which means you might catch a glimpse of yourself in the mirror saying, “I die” when you leave the salon.

So you got the blow-out but how do you make this insanely beautiful hair last? Read the following tips:

ESSENTIAL TOOL : THE SHOWER CAP — Yes you will go from fab to drab when you put on this shower cap but this will be your best friend over the following days while you’re saving your precious blow out shower to shower!

Put your hair loosely into a top knot and secure with a loose hair tie wrapping around just once – quickly slip the shower cap on and hop into the shower keeping your hair dry.

After your shower, quickly take the shower cap off and shake your head to have your Pantene Pro-V moment — you just saved your blow-out!

NIGHT 1 — When you’re getting ready for bed, pull all of your hair up and lay down with your hair spread out on the pillow. This will allow your roots to stay in an upward direction throughout the night creating volume you might have lost otherwise.

DAY 2 – Light Hair Spray — Your roots might not be as volumized as when you left the salon but that can be fixed! I love a light hairspray like Air Control from Aveda – not only does it smell amazing but it gives you just the right amount of hold you need to feel refreshed.

DAY 3 — Dry Shampoo — Your roots might start to look and feel greasy so it’s time to whip out the dry shampoo. I love one by Oribe to freshen up your locks and give your hair life again.

DAY 4 — This can be a stretch but you can do it! A mix of dry shampoo with a bit more hair spray at the roots and a few head flips can keep you in the game. Also try switching your part. A hair stylist told me that your hair can get so used to being one way that it gets weighed down. If you’re comfortable with it, simply switching your part gives volume to your hair you didn’t even know you had and a fun way to mix up your look!

With these helpful tips you’re definitely able to keep your fabulous blow-out going strong for a few extra days and once the luster has gone, it’s just time to hit up Dream Dry again and continue to make every day glamorous.

Walking out of the salon like:

WELCOME TO MIAMI

A few months back I went on a weekend getaway to surprise my sister Amber for her birthday! We had the best time celebrating and hanging poolside at the Fontainebleu Hotel with her best girlfriends.

Every time I visit Miami, I wonder…can I live here?! A 2 hour flight from NYC and just like that you’re in paradise!

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For this look, I kept it strictly Diddy style — all white everything.

There’s nothing like a white V-neck and jeans. I’m a huge fan of this simple look for summer days into night. To break it up a bit – I tied a destroyed denim jacket around my waist to add some texture. A pair of nude heels is a great way to elevate your look into evening and add some flare.

The sunnies of the season? Reflective shades. You can have so much fun with your selfie game with a pair of mirrored sunglasses. This unisex trend has been spotted everywhere from the signature Dior’s you see all over your Instagram feed to a cheap thrill at Forever 21 which has now become my favorite spot to stock up on trendy shades. (It’s a problem.)

This pair is by Aerie — I love the clear white frames with neon green lenses. They just so happened to match my palm tree backdrop perfectly.  (I promise I didn’t plan it!)

It’s super important to invest in a great pair of white skinny jeans. This pair is from American Eagle Outfitters and is part of the new Denim X collection. The jeans have a next level of stretch that won’t bag out. They truly hold their shape and were a staple my entire trip!

Throw on a straw hat and a corally-orange red lip with some tossled beach waves and I was ready to take on Miami in style.

Cue Will Smith.

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Thank you to my dear friend & sister, Soumya for taking these photos! xoxo

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Top & Sunnies: Aerie

Jeans and Denim Jacket: American Eagle Outfitters

Heels: Mango, Similar here

WEDDING SEASON: Boho Bridal Beauty

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Who doesn’t love wedding photos?! If you’re like me, you might start looking at a friend’s wedding album then somehow come across another wedding and get lost in a whole new love story of up-dos, decor and dresses. This happened to me once I came across my fellow Fashionista’s gorgeous wedding on my Instagram feed. Erica and I used to work together when I was a young summer intern at Victoria’s Secret — I always admired her effortless style and that showed through as she tied the knot just a few months ago. While most brides to be may opt for a classic up-do — Erica’s wedding look is the perfect inspiration for the non-traditional bride who wants to stand out for more reasons than her white dress.

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When deciding her look, Erica wanted to channel, “the modern-day gypsy who loves natural glamourous hair and doesn’t try too hard.” Hair stylist, Dominick Pucciarello created gorgeous soft, cascading loose waves for the ceremony.

“My inspiration for my hair look was very boho inspired. I love that natural, effortless vibe with a touch of glam. My dress was the statement piece and my hair was the accessory so I didn’t want anything too overpowering. I just needed a nice accent.” 

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For the reception, Erica added a touch of glam with a beautiful head-piece. I love the idea of mixing it up when you’re ready to party! Being Pakistani, I especially adore this look. For the past couple of years, the trend at many Pakistani wedding I’ve attended has been incorporating a headpiece into your look. Whether you’re the bride or a guest it’s a great way to be festive and fashionable. It’s so awesome to see part of Pakistani/Indian culture being translated into American style. For a while it was very rare to find a piece of jewelry like this in the US but now they are so accessible. Glad I don’t have to make them out of my mom’s necklaces anymore. (True story). Erica’s wedding look is one of my favorites I have ever seen — I hope you find them just as inspiring! Be sure to follower her on Instagram for even more style inspo!

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DAY AND NIGHT

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This summer, I am all about the LWD — otherwise known as the Little White Dress.

I dreamed about this silhouette from Aritzia (as I do most things) when I spotted it on the racks when it was still freezing in NYC. I decided to purchase and stay optimistic thinking one day summer may indeed come and I can rock this dress with open toe shoes and bare legs.

Finally – summer arrived and it’s insanely hot in NYC. The instant fix? This easy breezy dress that I can take from day to night.

I wanted to show you fellow Fashionistas the versatility of this dress by simple switching up your accessory game.

For a casual day look – I love this paired with a flat cognac sandal, turquoise jewelry and my new favorite tassel earrings. For the summer heat, I love the hairstyle that has been trending over your Instagram feed: the half bun.

This look is perfect for the office, brunch out with the girls, or a fun day date.

For the evening it’s all about your shoes. To add some edge, I paired this dress with my statement heels from Zara. The red gives that extra pop you need that elevates the look into night.

I literally “let my hair down” and embraced my natural waves to switch up my look. It’s important to embrace your natural texture in this season because no matter how much you may try to fight it — the humidity will win.

If you want to add more shape, this dress comes with an adorable rope belt you can tie for a more fitted look. However, I love this dress loose. It has so much movement, and the hem comes up just a bit on the sides to show-off a bit of leg which never hurt anyone.

Are you ready to rock this look day to night? (Cue Kid Cudi.)

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Dress: Aritzia

Shoes: Zara, American Eagle Outfitters

Earrings: H&M

Bracelet: American Eagle Outfitters

Photos by talented Allison Schaller