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Monthly Archives: September 2018

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Rant: Old Navy Completely Dissed The Plus Size Women Of Kentucky

I was originally working on another post to go up today when I felt the need to write this first. This is something that has happened many times before with other retailers, and I feel very passionately about this topic. So the other post can wait.

You may or may not be aware that Old Navy announced recently they would be adding plus sizes to select stores. That is 75 stores to be exact. Those select stores will now be carrying up to a size 30W in store. I think we all thought this was about time. And I was really excited to hear plus sizes were coming to stores for many reasons. For me personally I seem to be all over the place in their sizing, so I really need to try their clothing on to find a good fit. But I also was excited for the women in my state, many who don’t have disposable money to order something and then it not fit. Old Navy is more on the affordable side, and for women to be able to buy in store is a huge thing in a state where poverty is a huge problem. I had plans on going and getting some things to share with all of you.

Now I don’t know exactly how many stores in total Old Navy has (I read its a 1,000, but I have no confirmation), but I do know that there are a least a few states that don’t have any stores, like Alaska and Idaho. So my initial thought when I heard the news was that obviously some states, bigger states like  California, are going to have more than one location with plus sizes. But aside from that then all states that have a store will get at least one location with plus sizes in the stores, right?

The email announcement that plus size clothing was now in stores went out on the 9-21-18. I didn’t have a chance to look it over for a few days, but did finally make the time to sit down and read my emails. In case you did not get that email or just don’t read your emails, here is what it said:

Your Style. Your size.

When you log on to Old Navy’s website and go to their store locator, there is now a link at the top you can click to see a list of where the stores that carry plus sizes are located. (Just a note: The link that lists where Old Navy is adding plus sizes is working, but Old Navy seem to have take the actual list off of it between the time I started writing this and the day it was scheduled to post. I am not sure  why, but I am leaving the link in case they put the list back.) Obviously, the first thing I did was going to see where my local store was. That is when I realized, oh not every state is getting plus sizes. And I have to admit, I am kind of pissed about it.

old navy disses Kentucky

Here in Kentucky we have one of the highest populations of plus size women per capita, yet we are not getting not even one store with plus sizes. And it’s not just Kentucky they left out. Other states like West Virginia are also getting skipped over. Actually, only 31 states are getting plus sizes. Why?

I’m sure if we asked Old Navy they would respond with some polished bull shit answer like “we analyzed our orders and we felt we had to give the stores in the areas where we receive the most plus size orders the clothing in stores”. I want to be clear, I have not asked them, and as far as I know Old Navy has not said this. But this has happened time and time again to my state when companies choose where to go, what stores to incorporate plus sizes into, etc.. They don’t realize how short-sighted they are being. If your goal is to bring in new sales, you don’t go where you are already making the sale.

Don’t get me wrong, I am really glad Old Navy is finally bringing plus sizes back into stores. I just think if they truly cared about making their clothing more accessible, they would spread their plus size stores out better. The demographic and market is here, they just haven’t been given the opportunity to see what you offer. Not everyone is comfortable ordering online. And even if they are comfortable ordering online, your sizing is just not consistent enough, and dealing with returns eats up time and money.

I’m really tired of companies skipping my state. There is a store the next state over that would be about an hour and a half drive away. And I have driven that far in the past to do a store try on. But that was for a new store with limited locations. So I don’t feel inclined to do that here. Quite honestly I don’t think I will be spending any money at Old Navy till they put plus sizes in a store in my state.

Tell me in the comments if Old Navy skipped over your state, and if so what state are you in?

 

 

 

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Subscription Box Review – Yes! Oh Yas! September 2018

The items included in the Yes! Oh Yas! September 2018 box

It’s that time of year again where I am back to doing subscription box reviews. I wanted to make it a point to start a few weeks earlier this year so you would have plenty of time to plan out any subscriptions you wanted to get for gifts this year.

This year I will trying my best to review subscriptions you haven’t heard about and the ones you are curious about. Today we are starting with a beauty subscription box I recently heard about on Instagram. They only started this year. So I am really excited to share it with you all.

 

Service Name: Yes! Oh Yas!. Today we are looking at what was sent for the month of September 2018.

 

Price: It is $14.99 a month plus $3.99 shipping for US residents.

 

Where Is It Available: It is available to all US residents and to Canadian Residents for an additional $9.50 for shipping.

 

Who To Get It For: Yourself or anyone else that loves makeup. This seems to be a great one for someone who is just starting their makeup collection or someone looking to try indie makeup brands.

 

What You Get: You get three to seven full-sized products every month. (I thought I had read when I signed up that at least one product was guaranteed to be a palette, but it doesn’t seem to say that now. However, looking at previous months and spoilers for future months, it seems to hold true. I guess they just aren’t  guaranteeing it now.)

As a bonus, the website currently says that any one who completes a full years membership with Yes! Oh Yas! will receive a free limited edition box worth $200-$400!

 

Drawbacks: For me there were not any with this box. However, if you like a box that has a mix of items (meaning not just makeup), maybe this would not be the subscription for you.

 

The Details: Your subscription arrives in a bag, at least this months did.

Yes! Oh Yas! Subscription arrives in a bubble mailer

I have seen pictures of previous months where they arrived in boxes, but I think most months they come in a similar bubble mailer bag.

One of the first things you should pull out of the bag is a note card with a list of products included and their prices.

Card with products listed that come in this months Yes! Oh Yas!

As you can see the total value of $119 by their calculations. Now as I am doing a post like this for a Subscription Box Review, I am often going to product pages to link to. And I think their calculations were off a bit. I think this months was actually worth a few dollars more, depending on how you look at it. I will mark the difference by the products as I found them.

This months subscribers received four items. Let’s have a look at what we got.

The items included in the Yes! Oh Yas! September 2018 box

Starting at the top and working downward:

  1. Aesthetica Pro Brush Series – This is a 3-piece eyeliner, brow & spoolie brush set. This sells for $45.00 on Aesthetica’s website.
  2. Chella Matte Lipstick Pencil – This pencil is supposed to last for hours of wear while keeping your lips soft and hydrated. I received mine in the color Naughty Nude. I do not know if everyone received the same color or not. It sells for $18.00 on the Chella website. This was an error on the info card sent which read $20
  3. Glo by Glory Glo Stix Semi-Matte Liquid Lipstick – I received mine in the color Honey Bun, its described as a Mocha Brown Nude. Again I am unsure if everyone received the same color or not. These sell for $18.00 on the Glo by Glory website.
  4. Naked Cosmetics Holographic Highlighter Collection – Six stunning iridescent shades. From rose quartz to ultra-violet, opal to emerald, and sapphire to gold. This palette sells retail for $39.99, but it is currently on sale for $29.99. This was the other item with a price discrepancy from the card. If we go by the original price the box is worth a few dollars more. If we go by the sale price, then its a couple dollars less. I suppose it could have been on sale for the price they listed on the card at the time Yes! Oh Yas! purchased it.

I think I personally am most excited about that highlight palette. But I don’t feel like I got any bad products in this box.

Let me give you a look at the colors of the products, so you can see what they really look like.

Inside the boxes of products I received in the Yes! Oh Yas! subscription

I really like that the palette has a magnetic closure. I don’t have to worry about it staying closed.

Make sure you are following me on Instagram and Facebook as well. I most likely will post some additional pictures there, possibly some swatches.

 

Where To Sign Up: If you are interested in trying this box out for yourself you can sign up on the Yes! Oh Yas! website.

 

Final Thoughts: Overall based on value and what I like I am very pleases with this subscription. I am actually able to use everything that I received, which is kind of rare for me in a subscription box. The value versus what you spend is just phenomenal. I don’t think I have tried any of these brands before, and I really like trying new companies. So I will definitely continue with this one at least for a bit to see how they progress.

 

Let me know in the comments what you thought of this box. Do you think this one will have staying power? Are you considering signing up? And as always let me know what boxes you want to see me review before December. I can do two more than what I currently have planned and I would love to hear your feedback.

 

 

 

 

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Product Review – Vitamin Sea Beauty Sea Kelp & Charcoal – Firming & Polishing Body Scrub

Vitamin Sea Beauty Sea Kelp & Charcoal Body Scrub

If you caught my post titled My First Order From Riley Rose, then you already know that I purchased this Vitamin Sea Beauty Sea Kelp & Charcoal Firming & Polishing Body Scrub during that order.

Vitamin Sea Beauty Sea Kelp & Charcoal Body Scrub

In addition to being my first order from Riley Rose, this was my first time trying anything from the brand Vitamin Sea Beauty. And let me just say now, that is a totally cute name for a brand that uses ingredients from the ocean.

So there were a few things that initially interested me in trying this product. I do use a lot of body scrubs, especially in the summer time. They quit making my favorite one, and I had been struggling to find one that didn’t irritate my Balsam of Peru contact allergy. I usually, not always just usually, have good success with product contain kelp. The same really goes for charcoal. I didn’t see anything that stood out in the ingredient list that would trigger a reaction other than fragrance, and fragrance can mean a lot of things. I don’t react to all types of fragrance. So I felt pretty confident that this might work for me going in.

As you can see on the label this body scrub boasts a few claims. Here is what it says it will do:

  • Scrubs away dry skin
  • Smoothes knees and elbows
  • Clears blackheads
  • Perks up skin

I think the name also implies that it will have some firming properties.

What I personally am looking for in a body scrub. I need something that is moisturizing for my dry skin and that can exfoliate gently, but deeply. I need little to no fragrance, and I am always looking for something that doesn’t contain an ingredient that I will react to. I use scrubs year round on my legs after I shave or wax, and under my breast. You all know that area under your breast where you sweat and if you don’t exfoliate you start to get a rash. I increase my use in the summer because of heat and the an increase in shaving and waxing. I don’t typically get a lot of blackheads on my face, but I do get them on my shoulders, so if it works for that its kind of a bonus.

First let’s take a look at the actual product.

Inside the jar of Vitamin Sea Kelp and Charcoal Body Scrub

This was obviously taken after I had already used out of the jar a couple of time, but it doesn’t really change what you are able to see. You can see the charcoal bits in there if you look close. They have been milled pretty finely, so no big harsh pieces.

A bit of the Vitamin Sea body scrub on my finger

I wanted to get a bit on my finger for a close up so you could get a better idea of this products texture. It’s not like the typical salt or sugar body scrub where it’s really grainy surrounded by liquids. This has almost the consistency of a body butter with the scrub aspect from the charcoal in it. It’s unlike anything I have every personally tried. Even with this picture being so close up you can barely see the bits of charcoal because of how finely milled it is.

I have now used this product for about four weeks. And I use it four times a week approximately. I just leave it in the shower so it is convenient to use when I want. I even packed some in a travel jar when I went on vacation.

I have not had any allergic reactions to the product, which I am really happy about. Of course I am not using it near my face where most of my reactions happen, however I have had reactions in the past to products that got nowhere near my face. The fragrance is super subtle, and it does not linger on the skin after you use it. It smell a bit like the beach after a storm if you have ever been there for that. Definitely not like fake ocean scented candles or perfume, but more fresh and clean. It’s a bit hard to explain beyond that or maybe I am just really bad at describing scents.

I was exceptionally happy with how well it worked at exfoliating under the breast area without feeling harsh. I also think it does a decent job at exfoliating the places I shave. I don’t think it does quite as well as my past favorite I am trying to replace, but this comes closer than anything else I have every tried. As for blackheads, I noticed it does clear out any that are closer to the surface, but any that are a little deeper it doesn’t really touch. I really don’t think I see any difference in the firmness of my skin, but I also don’t think that I have very much skin that isn’t firm in areas I would use this body scrub.

Overall I am really happy with the Vitamin Sea Beauty Sea Kelp & Charcoal Body Scrub. I most likely will be repurchasing this in the future. If you are interested in trying this for yourself then or trying other products from this brand you can find them on the Riley Rose website as well as Vitamin Sea Beauty’s website.

Tell me in the comments if you have tried any of the products from Vitamin Sea Beauty and what you thought of them.

 

 



 

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What I Wore On Vacation – A Plus Size Look Book

Vacation was a bit of a struggle, and I didn’t get as many pictures taken as I had intended, but I did get did get some pictures of a few outfits. So I put a plus size vacation clothing look book together for you. Not everything is going to still be available from the original seller, but we will talk about that more as we come to it.

Our trip included stops in the following:

  • Wattsville, Alabama
  • New Orleans, Louisiana
  • Orange Beach, Alabama
  • Helen, Georgia

So I tried to pack a wardrobe that was stylish, comfortable, and cool. I included a couple of nicer outfits for dinner at nicer restaurants we had planned. But overwhelmingly I packed clothing that would keep me cool because everyone kept telling me how hot it was going to be. Ironically, as it turned, it was hotter where I live than at any of the place we visited. But I am still happy with what I packed.

Torrid dress paired with Propet Sandals and Multi Sac HandbagThis was from the first full day I was in New Orleans. It’s also probably the most put together I looked during my whole trip at any of the stops we made. I mean I actually did my hair this day, and my accessories go with my outfit. On vacation for me that is my typical, but this vacation was anything but typical.

The dress is from Torrid. It is their Olive V-Neck Tiered Challis Mini Dress. That particular dress is not available at the moment, but you never know with Torrid. They often bring items back. Or alternatively they do have similar items. Currently the dress closest in style to what I am wearing is their Olive Tie Sleeve Gauze Skater Dress. But there is only a few sizes left online as I type this, so if you want it grab it before its gone. My dress is a size 2, which is pretty much my standard size at Torrid in most things.

The shoes are the Propet Women’s Aurora Wedge Sandal in Olive. This is the same shoe I showed in my last Amazon Prime Wardrobe Try On, just in a different color option. This shoe is very comfortable and comes in a wide range of sizes and widths.

The purse is from Multi Sac Handbags, it is one of the purses they sent me last year. If you want to hear know more about why I like Multi Sac and how I ended up with them sending me some purses, you can read about it in the Giveaway I did with Multisac last year. This bag I have here is their Lorraine Crossbody in two-tone vinyl(faux leather). This color combo is Pony and Coffee. I can’t find this color on their website, so I linked to the black version. But you can most likely find this color combo in one of the stores they sell in.

Asos dress with Avenue shoes and Multisac handba

One of the last days we were in New Orleans we took a bus tour and then walked through the Market. So I made sure to wear something breezy and comfortable.

This dress is from ASOS Curve, but I didn’t buy it from ASOS. I had seen it on their website some time ago and they were already sold out of anything close to my size. I ended up finding it on Poshmark last fall, and I bought it to wear this summer. I have talked about Poshmark here on the blog before, I really think it’s a great way to find deals and items you missed out on when they were in the store. I typically size down to an 18 at ASOS, but I asked a few questions from the seller and found out this ran a bit small. The one I am wearing is a size 22. It was a bit big and I probably would have been okay with a 20, but I think this worked well enough.

I both sell and buy on Poshmark as do a lot of bloggers. If you want to check out what I have up for sale on my Poshmark closet you can click here, or it is always linked in the main menu at the top of every page. You can find a lot of great deals, and some not so great deals, on a wide variety of brands including ASOS Curve (This link should take you to all the ASOS Curve available on Poshmark). Most items are either new or gently used. If you don’t already have an account on Poshmark, then by using this link you can get a $5 off your first purchase. If it asks you for a code use KARENMSMITH77.

With the dress I have paired with it the same handbag as above. My shoes are from the Avenue. They are their Farrah Braided Gladiator Wedge Sandal. They come in two colors, black or brown. They are on clearance now, and not many sizes left, but if they have your size these are selling for a steal. To finish it off I have on a pair of 50mm silver hoop earrings.

City Chic Maxi Dress

This was taken at our last stop in Helen, Georgia. So it was kind of backlit and my husband forgot to put the backlighting setting on, but I thought the picture looked kind of cool anyway. So I decided to share my picture but I will also share the stock photo below so you can see the details of the print.

City Chic Hidden Foliage Dress

This is a City Chic dress. It is their Hidden Foliage Maxi Dress. This style of dress comes in several patterns, but this particular one is currently on clearance and all sizes seem to be available. If you like the style but think you would prefer a different pattern they also have the Wild Flower Maxi Dress, the Electric Rose Maxi Dress, and the Wild Jungle Maxi Dress.

I didn’t really add anything other than shoes to this dress. The day that I wore this we were mainly out taking some short walks around a lake and grabbing lunch at a small store. Not really the kind of area or kind of activities you get really dressed up for. The shoes I have on were super comfortable, like straight out of the box they were comfortable. They are also from the Avenue. It is their Fran Braided Slingback Wedge Sandal in Bronze. It is also available in black, but since this shoe is on clearance sizes are limited as I am writing this.

If you see this and think I was stuck on dresses and cold shoulders, you’re not entirely wrong. But I did have more variety than this in my wardrobe, however my energy and a lot of rain conspired against me when it came to taking pictures of those other outfits. I do feel though that these three outfits give a good overview of my vacation style. And really I think I always love dresses and cold shoulders.

Tell me in the comments what your vacation style is.

 

 


 

 

 

 

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Sheet Masks I Took With Me On Vacation – Week Four August 2018

Sheet masks,I packed for vacation in week four

For the fourth and final week of August I was on vacation. I have been struggling with my health for a while, and just packing was a bit of an ordeal. So I decided to pack a little different from typical for me, and that included my skin care.

Sheet masks,I packed for vacation in week four

I decided the best strategy for me was to pack what was going to be both most compact and easiest to make sure I had everything. So I went with a selection of 3 in 1 masks to take with me. I did take a few more than I needed. I needed enough for a week and three days, I probably took enough for almost two weeks. I liked the idea of having options.

Two of the masks I already had in my collection, I believe they came in one of the many beauty subscription boxes I have tried. The rest I ordered off of Amazon in order to receive them in time for the trip.

Starting from the top left, I already had this one. It is the 3 Step Goat Whitening and Fine Dust Protector Cellulose Mask from Xaivita+ Dr.. It is available on Amazon in a ten piece set. In this one you get an ampoule (essentially a toner), a mask, and a cream. This is also available on Beauteque, which is, most likely where mine came from.

 


Top middle I already had as well. It is a two in one mask from Wellage, specifically their Vitablue Injection Mask. It comes with an ampoule and a sheet mask. I got mine in a subscription box, though I do not remember which one. I have linked to Amazon because once again that is the only place I see them currently available out of the places I buy from.

 

Top right I purchased on Amazon. It is the Mediheal 3 Step R:NA Toning Sheet Mask Pack. It is available for purchase as a single or in a ten piece set. This set includes a pre-moistened cleansing gauze, a sheet mask, and a face cream. I did not see this one available at any of my other usual places to buy sheet masks.

 


Bottom left is a box of ten I bought on Amazon. It is the Americano 3-Step Facial Sheet from Skin7Teen. This set says it includes 1 toner and 1 ampoule, though I think they are essentially the same thing. And of course it includes a sheet mask. The toner and ampoule are for different areas of your face, so this can be very customizable. I personally did not use them in the spots the directions said because my oily areas and my dry areas are different from typically talked about. I have not seen this mask anywhere else I shop, though I think Beauteque sometimes has this brand.

 


And finally bottom right we have the last set I bought on Amazon. Each of the masks are different, but all are from the same brand. This is the Missha 3-Step Sheet Mask Set. You get five different masks with the set. You get one each of Brightening, Hydrating, Lifting, Nutrition, and Purifying. Just as the masks are different, what comes with them is too. Some of them have Peeling Gel Cleanser, a Toner, and a Sheet Mask. And the rest come with a Toner, a Sheet Mask, and a Face Cream. You can purchase these individually on YesStyle, but it is a much better value to purchase these in a set.

 

In addition to the sheet masks I took, I also had with me some items to supplement my skin care routine. I took mainly sample sizes along with a couple of travel size items. I took about four sample size packets of the Fresh Soy Face Cleanser along with my Clarisonic Mia 2. Each packet of the cleanser is good for about 4 to 6 face washes. I typically use this with my Clarisonic for both cleansing and exfoliation in the shower a few times a week. But I used it for cleaning my face both morning and night, with and without the Clarisonic on this trip.

I also brought with me the Innerskin Soothing Cleansing Water H2O for both a second cleanser and easy makeup removal. And for a moisturizer I brought a travel size of Clinique Moisture Surge Intense Skin Fortifying Hydrator. Both of these are fragrance free and pretty easy to find year round in a travel size if you are looking for fragrance free travel products, or just fragrance free products in general.

Tell me in the comments what products you like to travel with for skin care. Do you have any good tips for saving space?

 

 

Save Extra 10% OFF First Orders Over US$35!

 

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Update & What’s Coming For September And October

Most of you know I have been away on vacation, and the last few posts were pre-scheduled to post while I was gone. I simultaneously was, and still am, dealing with some extra health issues. I still don’t have answers about everything regarding my health, but I will cover that more fully in another post soon.

My last post that went up was the summary of what sheet masks I used in the third week of August. I will have a week four posted soon, but it will be quite different. Rather than my typical day to day post of what I used, I will instead be sharing en mass what masks I got specifically to take with me for travel. If you want to see specific sheet masks I used the rest of the month you can find those in my Instagram feed.

This past month was a personal challenge to help jump start getting my skin care back on track. I may occasionally do a monthly personal challenge again that I share. But most months I think I will be doing about half of the sheet masks I used last month. So rather than sharing a weekly summary I will be doing a monthly summary.

Just like my travel has sort inspired a travel related skin care post, I will have quite a few travel centric post including a post about some of the outfits I took with me and some ways to make life easier if you are traveling with health issue. I have been toying around for the last couple of years with the idea of adding a travel section to the blog, and I am pretty sure I will be doing that now. But I would love to hear any feed back you may have about that.

I am working with my doctors, and while it is taking longer than hoped to feel better, I still have hope that I will be back to my regular energy levels soon. I did take this past week off with no posts scheduled. This post will start me back to the posting schedule I have been using the last couple of months, which ends being about one and a half posts a week. I am super hopeful that by October to be back up to two posts a week. So I am hoping to be able to have time to work some product reviews in as well.

I also am already gearing up for the Holiday season in a way. One of the things I do every year here on the blog is review subscription boxes. I usually start in late September/early October and go till a couple of weeks before Christmas. I love subscription boxes and I think that they make great gifts, especially for people who are into something maybe you don’t know much about or anyone who just loves getting surprises. I have already got a  couple of new ones planned, but I would also love to hear if any of you want a review of one specifically. So tell me in the comments what subscription box you want to see reviewed this year.

 

 

 

 

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