DERMAPLANING…WHAT IS IT? | BEAUTY

DERMAPLANING…WHAT IS IT? | BEAUTY

Hey readers!

Okay, so this post is all about something that I have been doing once a week for the last year or so, and I’m kind of obsessed with this little trick in my beauty routine. My not-so-secret secret is called dermaplaning – and it’s taking over the beauty world by storm. So you’re probably thinking to yourself, “What the actual heck is dermaplaning?” Skininc.com defines dermaplaning as “a simple and safe procedure for exfoliating the epidermis and ridding the skin of fine vellus hair (peach fuzz). It has been used for many years, but most estheticians don’t even know it exists…” hence my not-so-secret secret. Basically, dermaplaning is shaving the skin on the face to get rid of any dead skin cells and those small, nearly invisible baby hairs that can sometimes make foundation look cakey on application. This simple trick has been known to even the skin tone, diminish the appearance of acne scarring overtime, and enhances the texture of the skin. On top of these amazing perks, dermaplaning also allows skincare products to sink deeper into the skin and prevents pores from filling up with dead skin cells or left behind makeup remnants. Dermaplaning professionally done can cost upwards of $100.00, and a broke college girl with a shopping addiction can’t swing that once a week, so I found an easy, affordable, at home hack to share with you!

But first, let’s de-bunk a few myths. I love sharing this underground beauty trick with others, and the first thing almost everyone asks is, “Doesn’t your hair grow back thicker and darker?” And the answer is: NO! Dermaplaning is simply grazing the surface of the skin and ridding the skin of peach fuzz and dead skin cells. I have been doing this for well over a year now, and if anything, I have noticed less growth of peach fuzz on my face.

So how do I perform my very own dermaplaning at home? I found these super high quality Professional Eyebrow & Hair Razors from cosmetic company The Crème Shop for just $10.00! They came in a pack of three super cute pastel colored razors, with a mega sharp blade (be careful!). If you want to order these for yourself, which I highly recommend, you can find them here!

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So first I just prep my skin by removing any makeup I had on that day (which is almost always a full face) by using makeup remover wipes. Right now my favorite wipes are the Say Yes to Carrots Nourishing Gentle Cleansing Wipes and I just make sure to really clean up as much as I can. Next, to remove any remaining makeup, I use a gentle cleanser to ensure a clean canvas. Now for the fun part: dermaplaning! The best way that I have found to do this is to pull the skin just slightly so that it is nice and taut, but not too much to wear it will stretch out your skin. This ensures that the blade will get precise contact with the skin and a nice, close shave. Carefully, in small, quick, downward strokes, scrape the edge of the razor while keeping away from the lips and eyes (and be careful not to knick your eyebrows in the process! Been there done that!). Once you’re all done with this step, you should already notice a slight glow in your skin and your skin will be INSANELY smooth, let me just tell you. Once I’ve done this, I go ahead with my usual skincare routine, which is centered around calming products and skin tone evening products. Here are some of my favorites to use after a dermaplaning sesh!

1. Peter Thomas Roth Cucumber Gel Mask & Cucumber De-Tox Balancing Essence Water Mist

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2. Ole Henriksen Balancing Cucumber Face Mist & Boscia Charcoal Pore Pudding Mask

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3. Belif The True Cream – Aqua Bomb

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And that’s my super secret, but also not a secret at all beauty hack for this year! This has SAVED my acne-prone skin and it’s my favorite aspect of my skincare routine! Make sure you try it out and let me know in the comments what you think! Happy shaving!

XOXO,

“Don’t look back, you’re not going that way.” | From the Blogger’s Desk

“Don’t look back, you’re not going that way.” | From the Blogger’s Desk

Readers!

My lovely, amazing, loyal readers! I am so sorry for the lack of posts as of late, life has gotten totally hectic, but these changes have inspired me to dive even deeper into this epic chance that we like to call The Stella Files. I’ve just finished my second week of my freshman year of college, and I have felt every emotion on the spectrum. Insane growth, deep love, excitement, freedom, a new sense of self, anxiety, and grieving painful loss. After scrambling to get my brain and heart to match up, and after lots of time (literally on my knees) in prayer, I’ve come to the realization that my world isn’t coming unraveled, it’s being woven into the most beautiful and intricate quilt of adventures. These are just growing pains. There are stretch marks on my heart, wrinkles in my brain and my furrowed brow, but along with those are laughter lines from late nights on campus and grass stains on my jeans.

Throughout all of the drastic change that I have experienced in the past two weeks, there has been one constant in my life, and that is Jesus. Never before in my life have I felt the hand of God moving in my life, and I am thankful for the growing pains that He has sent my way. I read an article the other day (can’t remember, honestly, but I will try to go back and find it!) about “divine redirection” in our lives. In my eighteen years, I feel that I have always been kept on my toes, and for that I am thankful, as it’s come in handy. I sort of pride myself in being adaptable and flexible; able to take the shape of any container that I am placed in, but lately I have been put in a container that I just couldn’t fill. The empty spaces, the nooks and crannies that I was not able to fill, Christ filled for me, and then some. I am learning that God does not take things that we love or have become comfortable with away from us to hurt us. He makes all things work together for those who love Him. I am learning day in and day out that God is intervening in my life with divine redirection, and after prayer for clarity, I feel a deep and inexplainable peace about this divine redirection in my life.

I was laying in bed tonight after a long day of catching up on homework (I’m actively trying to break my procrastination habits…) with a mind unable to stop running. I was turned on my side, eyes closed, and in my mind I was just asking God for peace and for instructions on what my next steps should be. My mind (as it often does) wandered to Instagram and all of the saved posts I have for inspiration. One of my boards is titled, “WISDOM”, for those days when you just need a #FPWriteThisDown type of post to pick you up. Almost instantly, a post captioned, “Don’t look back, you’re not going that way” ran across the inside of my eyelids. I couldn’t even help myself or wait till morning, so I actually jumped out of bed and said, “I have to write.” Do I think this is a coincidence? Absolutely not. Funny, God knows He can reach me with His divine redirection through Instagram, of all things. I’ve spent days thinking to myself how I could have done things differently; maybe if I had then the outcome would have been different. But no, this is not about me. This is nothing that I did, there is nothing I could have done. This is Christ’s divine redirection in my life, and it’s time to keep my gaze forward, because THAT is where He is leading me.

Readers, I am extremely flawed. I am not a perfect Christ follower, I mess up multiple times daily, but this I can tell you is true: whatever it is that you are dealing with, there is a greater plan drawn out a very long time ago by a Creator that loves YOU. Embrace His divine redirection, take epic chances, and don’t look back, because you sure as heck aren’t going that way.

XOXO,

“You’re Allowed to be Unqualified”

“You’re Allowed to be Unqualified”

Today I was sitting in my first class of the day…

It’s a communications class (an elective for my Business Marketing major) and my professor was basically breaking down the class and getting rid of any anxieties we might have. The class is focused on media and culture, and as we were discussing how media truly influences us and how we appear on social media, my professor said something that I think we all seem to forget in this day and age. My professor said

“It’s okay to be unqualified. You can’t do everything, God gifted you with certain things, and we all have certain strengths and weaknesses. You don’t have to know it all. You’re allowed to be unqualified.”

As a blogger and a passionate advocate for social media business, I more often than not feel like I have to overcompensate for my weaknesses; where I lack in certain skills and areas. This field is an extremely visual field and is heavily centered around networking. To network is to display your qualifications and, really, sell yourself to the audience. The deeper you dig into blogging and the more growth your social media platform gets, the easier it is to feel like you’re juggling. Juggling your image, your social media following, blog analytics, outreach, collaborations, pressure to be “yourself”, but also to be socially accepted and relatable. Today I was reminded that it’s okay to not do everything. It’s more important to step back and look at your qualifications, your skills, what you’re good at, and build upon those and use those unique strengths to reach someone that maybe has been searching to connect with a blog just like yours.

So, bloggers, fellow creatives, influencers, there is no need to size up. Let’s all just be real for a second and acknowledge that it’s okay that you can’t do it all. What you can do, though, be great at it and master your craft. What you can’t do, observe others and learn from it, or collaborate with others and build on your combined skills. Today’s class was refreshing, eye opening, and real. I freaking love college.

XOXO,

Stella

 

BLACK IS THE NEW BLACK | MONOCHROME STREETSTYLE FT. TOBI

BLACK IS THE NEW BLACK…

And there’s no better look to transition into the fall season than classic monochrome. Monochrome looks are the easiest, quickest, and most fool-proof way to look über chic without any hassle. I teamed up with Los Angeles based retailer, Tobi, to bring you my take on the ultimate Summer-to-Fall monochrome look. I paired my Tobi Diem Skort Romper with some classic Chanel Butterfly shades, my go-to Madewell hoops, a super cool layered choker that I actually thrifted, and some oldie-but-goodie Madewell woven wrap-around d’orsay flats! To take this look from Summer to Fall, I threw on my favorite thrifted denim jacket (it’s clearly been loved a lot!).

the DETAILS

SHOP the LOOK

  • Diem Skort Romper – here

  • Gold Hoops – here

  • Gold Choker – thrifted

  • Denim Jacket – thrifted

  • Chanel Signature Butterfly Sunglasses – here

  • Madewell Woven D’orsay Flat – similar

XOXO,

FAVORITE TRENDS OF THE SUMMER , STYLED | FT. TOBI

THIS SUMMER WAS FILLED…

With, I would say, some of my favorite trends of all time. This season was all about experimental silhouettes, dreamy, flowy fabrics, and an edgy twist on your favorite tee shirt dress. I teamed up with Tobi, a super chic fast-fashion retailer serving major looks to over 1.5 million babes internationally. Tobi is all about bringing West Coast style to you for any occasion, whether it be prom, special occasions, that one vacation look you’ve been searching for, you name it. With the help of Tobi, I pulled together my top two favorite trends of the summer and styled them for you! 

I’ve seen loads of stunning, flowy florals this season and this look has to be my favorite take on the trend. This floral two-piece from Tobi is not only super on-trend, but its wearable, too. The wrap top gives me major Santorini vibes, and the ruffle shorts add a feminine flair. I styled this look with some classic sunnies from H&M, and my go-to Comme des Garçons x Converse sneakers. I wore this look during my trip to D.C. and it kept me cool and comfortable in the summer heat.

shop the look

  • addison floral ruffle shorts – here

  • melanie floral print wrap top – here

  • comme des garçons x converse sneakers – here

  • h&m sunnies – here

Another one of my favorite trends from this season has to be the corset/tee shirt combination. This trend is one that has been worn by basically every single fashion girl ever, and there’s no doubt that this trend will carry over into the fall and winter seasons, just because of how wearable and versatile it truly is. This corseted tee shirt DRESS (yes, believe it or not, its a dress) from Tobi has quickly become one of my favorite pieces in my closet. Despite it being a dress, I actually loved how it looked tucked in to some distressed high-rise jeans and sneakers. I also just want to take a second to obsess over the quality of this tee shirt dress. The fabric is unbelievably soft and the corset detailing is super flattering on every shape.

shop the look

  • all about that lace up shift dress – here

  • h&m sunnies – here

  • the perfect vintage jean – here

  • superga sneakers – here

I had such a great time exploring D.C. in these looks, and I absolutely loved looking on Tobi and picking out some of my favorite pieces for this season! I hope you enjoyed these looks and I hope they can help you style some of YOUR favorite pieces of the summer! Make sure you share your favorite trends and tag me @stellalizabeth! And a big thanks to my favorite photographer and boyfriend Sawyer for taking all of my photos! Photos taken on a Canon Rebel SL1.

A huge thanks to Tobi.com for providing me with these pieces, they are truly an amazing company and I definitely recommend taking a look at their website! You can find them at their website linked here, and on Instagram @shoptobi! Make sure to give them a follow and tell a friend!

XOXO,

THE ULTIMATE GUIDE TO… BODYSUITS | BODYSUITS STYLED 3 WAYS

I HAVE A RECENT OBSESSION…

And I’m sure by reading the title you’ve guessed it. Bodysuits, ladies and gentlemen. Bodysuits are all the rage right now in the realm of fashion, and understandably so! There’s nothing worse than finding a super cute top to tuck into those high-rise jeans, only to go throughout your whole day constantly tugging at the bottom of your tee. You can’t let a shirt interrupt your grind. Bodysuits are a great way to achieve that crisp, clean look of having a top tucked into pants or a skirt, but without all the hassle and discomfort of all the tugging. One of my favorite brands, AreYouAmI, designed a beautifully minimalistic 90s-esque bodysuit called the “Kimia” bodysuit. It’s spaghetti strap (so not the MOST bra-friendly bodysuit, but there are ways to work around this pretty easily) and square-neck. Overall, this piece, as seen on Kendall Jenner, various Victoria’s Secret Angels, and more, is one of the most coveted pieces of the summer. As much as I would love to rock this one, it’s a bit out of my price range. So, me, being the frugal shopper that my mom taught me to be, took it upon myself to check out Forever 21’s selection of bodysuits. The great thing about Forever 21 is that it’s extremely affordable, and they have hundreds of variations of on-trend pieces to choose from. Now, with fast fashion carriers, you have to be careful with the products you purchase (because quality can sometimes be compromised for affordability), but a great rule of thumb is that basic pieces are normally pretty great quality and hold together for plenty of wear time. I purchased three bodysuits from Forever 21…ALL COSTING ONLY $8.90! Not only do they look and fit super similar to the “Kimia” bodysuit, but they fit beautifully and go with basically everything in my closet.

I’ve actually been wearing these non-stop since I’ve gotten them, and I styled them how I’ve actually been wearing them out into the world so this is super accurate and just goes to show how wearable these pieces actually are. They’ve been super comfortable and completely hassle free. They serve as great layering pieces (the more bra-friendly version), but alone they make for a super clean-cut look without putting in too much effort. The best way to wear them on their own is with a strapless bralette (which you can also find on Forever 21’s website for under $5.00! I’ll have everything linked below.)

LOOK ONE | WHITE OUT

So for this look I paired the white square-neck bodysuit with my all time favorite wide leg Madewell jeans, classic white Sam Edelman sneakers, vintage Kate Spade rectangle sunnies, a vintage red leather Louis Vuitton handbag, and my summer go-to accessory: a silk bandana from J. Crew (worn as a choker, of course.)

LOOK TWO | WE WORE GINGHAM

This look is inspired by my all time favorite blogger, Danielle Bernstein of WeWoreWhat. I took my own spin on this city-esque look by embracing the gingham trend and layering this button up over my black square-neck bodysuit. I paired this look with some high-rise denim cutoffs from Abercrombie & Fitch, black patent leather J. Crew loafers, some white vintage-looking sunnies from Forever 21, and a black vintage Louis Vuitton handbag.

LOOK THREE | HERE COMES THE SUN

I really embraced my inner sunshine with this look. I paired my yellow scoop-neck bodysuit with my vintage high-rise Levi’s, some patent leather and gold accented J. Crew sandals, gold statement hoops from Forever 21, and a vintage yellow leather Kate Spade handbag.

AND…

Those are all of my looks! I shot at Thomas Jefferson’s beautiful Poplar Forest retreat, which is a little gem in my city. I loved shooting here, not only is the scenery and history of it just breathtaking, but it fit my three looks perfectly. Mixing high end vintage pieces with something brand new and accessible! I hope you all enjoyed this post as much as I did creating it, and I hope that this helps you style your bodysuits a little easier! Remember, everything is wearable in real life if it makes YOU feel beautiful and comfortable. 

LINKS TO WHAT I WORE:

Women’s Square Neck Cami Bodysuit (in black and white): here!

Women’s Stretch Knit Bodysuit (yellow is sold out!!): here!

XOXO,

#TSFxMadewell Denim Event

DENIM DREAMS DO COME TRUE…

From the start of The Stella Files, Madewell has been a huge inspiration to me when it comes to my own personal style. The carefree, cool-girl vibe and their insanely perfect boyfriend jeans have kept me coming back for more every time. Not too long ago, my local Madewell store reached out to me and we decided to host a collaborative event to celebrate their latest denim arrivals for the summer season! The great thing about Madewell denim is that not only are they classically chic, but they are crafted to literal perfection by experts in Los Angeles, New York City, and Kentucky. Another amazing thing about Madewell denim is the environmentally friendly aspect of their denim. Madewell accepts denim donations to benefit causes such as Habitat For Humanity! If that’s not enough to make the denim lover in all of us swoon, I don’t know what is!

A HUGE THANKS TO…

The Emmett Street Madewell team for hosting me! Overall, this event was a major success and I am so grateful and thankful for everyone that came out to support. I absolutely loved helping Madewell celebrate their new denim arrivals, I had such an amazing time meeting all of the new members of The Stella Files audience, and such an amazing time styling some of my closest friends! I’m so excited to keep rocking my favorite Madewell pieces, you guys never let me down.

Another huge thanks to Paradox Pastry for the yummiest raspberry macaroons, and a very special thanks to Nicole from the Emmett Street Madewell for reaching out to me in the first place and for working so hard to make this a possibility! You’re a total Boss Lady and it was so great to work with you!

UNTIL NEXT TIME,