Happy hump day! I’m having such a hard time accepting that Christmas is less than two weeks away. I’m still picking up a few last minute gifts and planning exactly how I want to execute my agenda in the upcoming year. Not to mention wrapping up end of the year projects at work and preparing for my time off. Needless to say, I have a lot going on. But what’s new? LOL I wore this outfit for a day downtown for some meetings and shopping and it didn’t disappoint. These Kristin Cavallari boots are comfortable enough to wear all day and I’m not ashamed to say I’ve worn this blazer almost every week since it got delivered.
I’m no stranger to incorporating a blazer into my style. It’s easily my go-to in cooler temperatures when I’m wanting to pull my outfit together. I’d been seeing plaid patterned blazers on all of my favorite blogs and Instagram and knew when I found a gray one, I’d add it to my wardrobe. Luckily, I ran across this gray one on the Missguided website. I also ordered it in two other colors (it comes in 14 colors), but the gray plaid is hands down my favorite.
Chelsea boots were one trend I could never really get into, until I saw this heeled version with a pointier toe. I bought them a few weeks ago after they restocked for the second time and they’re almost sold out in every size again. I’d been on the search for a bootie that wasn’t necessarily a high heel, but definitely wasn’t flat and this is the perfect medium. This Kendall and Kylie bootie is identical and close to the same price. They have a taupe pair that I’m in love with!
When I originally set my eyes onto a plaid blazer, one of my favorite bloggers had hers on with a graphic tee and denim and I loved how casual she wore it. I opted for a long sleeve plunge bodysuit since it was cooler outside. Bodysuits are something I keep on hand for every season because they pair so well with just about everything. Denim, skirts, or cut off shorts. You better believe I’ll still be wearing this blazer in the summer! LOL
Tomorrow I’ll have a gift guide up for those of you having trouble figuring out what to ask for, so be ready to copy and paste it into your iMessages 😉
75% of Americans are living paycheck to paycheck, including the ones with degrees. That means one of two things: 1) we’re either not bringing enough money in or 2) we’re spending too much of the money that we’re making. I made some significant changes at the beginning of this year that changed the dynamic of my whole lifestyle. I made half of my salary on my own through blogging, products and services. Without getting too detailed, my savings account is a couple thousand short of my annual salary even though I unexpectedly had to purchase a car earlier this year. Whatever the case may be, I want to discuss some changes you could be making in your own life that will hopefully allow you to make and keep more money.
A lot of people think that because they can afford something, they should have it. Whether it be a car, a more extravagant apartment, or expensive handbags – just because you can buy it, doesn’t mean you need to. The issue that we run into is feeling like those material things increase our value, when the reality is they decrease our net worth. Switch what makes you feel successful and your life will change.
Give up Guilty Pleasures
What you think you need, you really don’t. Ever since I could comfortably afford designer shoes, I’d buy a handful of pairs every year. January marked my first full year of blogging and I knew I wanted to take my brand and business to the next level. I vowed not to purchase a single pair of designer shoes, but to instead use that money to do the things I knew my business was going to need and eventually make me money. That was hands down the best decision I made for myself this year. I haven’t skipped a purchase yet that I regret, which means I didn’t really need it to begin with, and I’ve made gains in multiple areas that I’m proud of. Material rewards should be few and far between. Business over bags in 2018.
Invest in What Will Propel You
Whether it’s an educational course, a new laptop, or a set of newly designed business cards – make a financial investment in something that’s going to bring you a promotion, a better paying job, or an increase of profit in your business. Use the money you save by skipping out on, in my case, shoes, to buy the Adobe Suite you’ve been needing to design for your ideal client, that ring light for your new YouTube channel, or custom boxes for your new online boutique. It’s much more wise and rewarding to spend money that will grow what you’re wanting to pursue and hopefully bring money back to you than it is to spend it on something that’s only going to sit and never make you a dime.
Create an Additional Source of Income
So many people are living without wiggle room in between paychecks. We need every dollar that’s coming in and before we get it, it’s already assigned to go to something or someone else. If an emergency comes up, you can’t handle it immediately because you don’t have the money at that very moment and that shouldn’t be the case. It’s advised that we have at least four months of our salary saved up, should anything happen and some people don’t have four days of theirs put away. Before I found ways to make money outside of my paycheck, I had little spending money in between paydays. I’d get paid, put money into my savings (which was non-negotiable), pay my bills, and have just enough to make it another two weeks. Once I was able to create additional sources of income, I quit depending on my paychecks. Money was dropping into my account every other day and I no longer needed to wait until payday to handle what I needed to. One source of income hardly cuts it these days. Find a way to tap into something else that will bring in some extra cash, or even turn into a business that will eventually replace your paycheck.
Live Below Your Means
I’ve always been a hustler, and I’ve always been frugal, but I’ve always only had to take care of myself. Getting engaged made me want to hustle for much different reasons. If you thought living alone was pricey, think about building a household. It’s A LOT. At this point, I want my bank account cuter than my wardrobe, so if I have to pass up on the newest releases then so be it. When I wrecked my car this summer I didn’t just go for the car I could pay for, I went for the car that was a few hundred dollars under what I could afford. I REPEAT: Just because you can pay for it, doesn’t mean you should buy it. I’m very pleased with my purchase, but even more pleased that the car I chose will be paid off in half the time I financed it for.
Separate Your Personal and Business Accounts
This will help you so much in the long run. If all of your money is falling into your personal account, you’ll use the money like it’s yours. With all of your money in one account, it’ll be really hard to differentiate what your profit’s been when it’s time to do the numbers. I didn’t see the first couple of thousand dollars that I made for myself because it was going into my personal account and being used as bonus money. If you’re going to pay yourself, pay yourself from your business account and use the rest of the money you’ve made to grow your business. This will also make it much easier when it’s time to do your taxes.
It’s Not About What You Make, It’s About What You Keep
Not only did my salary increase this year, I began making a decent amount of money for myself with products, offering services and sponsored collaborations. Making more money than the year before didn’t mean anything else but putting up more. I talked in this post about adjusting your savings as your income increases. The goal is to have more money coming in, without increasing how much money is leaving.
What financial goals do you have in 2018 and how do you plan to achieve them? Comment below!
Is your curly hair normally wash and go or do you do a wet twist out or a similar process? I’m trying to figure out how to get those big fluffy curls.
The curls you see on me are alwayssss wash and go. I wish I was more talented (and patient) with my curly hair, but since I haven’t worn it in years, I’m relearning how to style it. I haven’t experimented with twist outs or any other styling tools other than flexirods. My wash and go results came from using Ouidad Climate Control shampoo and conditioner which has proven to work the BEST for my prone-to-frizz curls. Ulta sells them in travel sizes if you want to test them out without paying full price. After I wash, I use a mixture of the products below, before diffusing. I split my hair in half, put a good amount of product in it, using the raking method with my fingers, and then diffuse. Once I diffuse, I use a metal pick to fluff my curls with my head upside down or leaning sideways.
I know cold weather doesn’t last down south but I’m looking for an everyday boot to wear while I run around. I have a one year old baby I have to chase, so nothing uncomfortable or with too high of a heel please!
We’ve had cold weather for the last few days and when I tell you, I’ve pulled down every pair of boots I own! LOL from moto boots, to thigh highs, suede, leather. I know I only have a limited amount of time to wear them and I’m going to make sure that I do. Here are some really great options and most of them come in several colors, so you can find what you’d get the most use out of –
I’m looking for a dress to wear to my company holiday party. There isn’t a theme or dress code but I know I either want a long sexy gown that’s still appropriate, or something short and dramatic. Help please!
I recently started a YouTube channel along with an Instagram page beauty and fashion and I want to know tips on how to gain supporters and a following. I post on Instagram frequently and upload videos as frequently as I can. I’m not the most popular person and don’t have tons of friends. On Instagram I run into big companies, bloggers etc. that simply follow me from seeing me in a hashtag on Instagram then unfollow to just gain a follower. I want to know if you have any tips on what I can do better to gain a following. Do you think having a Facebook is important as well?
I’d have to see your actual pages in order to give you more specific advice on what I think you should be doing differently, but the most fitting answer that I have is to maintain an organic following. No matter how long it takes you to grow a big following, the most important part will be making sure the people who are following you are doing so because they genuinely like the content that you create or even you as a person. Unfortunately, there’s no “get rich quick” scheme to growing an audience, but I do know that consistently and quality is the magic combination. Make sure you’re creating valuable content that will add value to whoever is watching it and sharing it consistent enough to keep eyes on your pages. A Facebook isn’t important. Focus on what you want to build, in your case Instagram and YouTube, and don’t spread yourself too thin trying to grow too many channels. I hope this helps!
Do you have suggestions for a versatile black dress? I have a few bachelorette parties next year and want to find a dress that I’ll be able to wear to all of them.
Those are hands down my favorite to keep in my closet. In addition to the bachelorette parties, you can wear it to date night, or girls night. Here are some options that you can rotate –
How much time do you spend at your day job vs your own personal blog/business? When it comes to prioritizing the two, how do you manage to prevent your job affecting your business and vice versa?
For the most part, I have 40 hour work weeks just like everyone else. Those hours can vary due to events that may cause me to work late or early. My job is important to me and I without a doubt want to continue to grow within my career, so I don’t want to cheat my job by working on my business during that time. I’m also lucky enough to have the flexibility to handle things as they come up. So, if I get an email from a brand during the day I can quickly reply or I can print shipping labels if products need to go out. My priorities change on a daily basis and on slow work days, I try and brainstorm for my business. There are also days my job requires my full attention, so I decide each morning what my focus will be. I understand off top that I need my evenings and weekends to dedicate to my brand since the majority of my week is designated to my career.
I just landed a new job that’s going to require me to travel weekly. I need the perfect makeup and toiletry bag that can handle being stuffed into a suitcase four times a month.Do you have any suggestions?
First, congratulations! That’s awesome. I have one toiletry and one make-up bag that I pretty much keep packed at all times. So when it’s time to go, I zip them up and roll out. I have this toiletry bag and love it because it’s unisex, so Nate takes it when he travels too. It fits everything we need and believe me, I pack A LOT of stuff. I’ve had this travel cosmetic bag for almost three years and it’s been worth every penny. I’ve had my eye on this case for quite a while but it’s a little too pricey for me. Here are some great options below –
Advice please! My boyfriend is turning 30 in March and always said he wanted to wake up in Turks and Caicos on his 30th birthday. So naturally, I purchased tickets without him knowing as a gift. I’m afraid he may book the trip himself if he doesn’t know sooner than later that he’s already going. Should I gift him the tickets for Christmas or just risk him booking?
To play it safe, I’d go ahead and give the tickets to him for Christmas. But make it fun! Maybe set up a treasure hunt where he has to find clues that eventually lead him to the tickets hiding in an envelope. Or have him unpack boxes inside of boxes until he finally gets to the tickets folded up inside. Now the question is – does he get another gift for Christmas since the trip is technically his birthday gift? LOL y’all have fun!
I bought this leather skirt over a month ago and am struggling with what kind of top to pair it with. Could you give me some suggestions for both warm and cold weather? It’s a simple basic but I’m struggling!
I love a good leather skirt, there’s so many ways to style it. This bodysuit would be perfect with a long coat over it or this cross front blouse. You could also do this chunky red sweater with black tights for the holiday season. Here are some other top options you could pair with it –
I feel like you literally KILLED this year and leveled up in EVERY single way possible. Do you mind sharing your plans for 2018? I know that if it’s anything like this year, it’ll be something special.
Aw man, thank you so much! 2017 has been SO memorable to me for so many different reasons. My personal and professional life even amazed me. Honestly, I feel like all that happened slowed me down a little. It was all so unexpected that I needed time to take it all in. As far as 2018 goes, I’m planning a couple of webinars and an entire e-course on building a blog from start to finish. I should have some new merchandise in the store pretty early on and I also might plan an event. One thing at a time is what I’m telling myself LOL. We’re also in between planning a wedding and deciding whether or not we’re going to buy a home or continue to rent. So lots of changes! It should be a good year. The main goals are growth and I’m so looking forward to it.
I’m sure you’ve answered this before but can you tell us again – how do you fill in your brows? I love them!
I’ve filled my brows in the same exact way for the past 5-6 years. Hopefully I’ve gotten a bit better as time goes on LOL. I use the Anastasia Beverly Hills Dip Brow Pomade in Ebony with this brow brush. A little bit goes a long way, one dip should be good for one entire brow. This may be something I do a quick Instagram video on just to show you exactly what I do!
I’m in the market for some new distressed denim. Do you have any favorites?
I sure do! Peep them below – also, they’re all under $100
I’m so glad I finally got around to getting to these questions. Life’s been a bit hectic with the year coming to an end. If you have any questions for next week, send them over to me via DM or email. I have my company Christmas party on Saturday and still don’t have a dress, so that’s a hint at how my life’s been going lately LOL. Enjoy your weekend! xx
With all the festivities I had going on this weekend, I didn’t get around to completing #CoffeeTalk, but there are still a ton of great deals floating around that I wanted to be sure I share with you all. I want to share as much as I can during this holiday season because gifting can get so pricey. Here’s what’s currently on my radar.
Express still has somewhat of a Cyber Week sale going on with up to 50% off of select items.