Friday, October 29, 2010

Wedding Style: Hauntingly Gorgeous Goth

It's finally here!  With Halloween just two days away, this post concludes our creepy, kooky, mysterious, and spooky series.  When planning for your Halloween event it is not always necessary to include ghosts, pumpkins, witches and the like. If those things seem a little too silly and childish for you then the best alternative for you would be to think in terms of Gothic style.  Instead of ghouls and spider webs you get roses and lace.  The key players in this motif are black and dark, blood red, candles, ornate damask prints, and lace.  These may not be the most traditionally beautiful spaces, but there is something eerily enchanting about this type of decor that we just can't seem to resist.

Horror movies always take place in the dark, which means you need candles! Candles are a great way of adding light and ambiance to your venue, and the type of candles you choose can really shape the theme of your wedding. You can opt for heavy pewter candelabras with tall, thin candles, or large pillar candles to give it a Gothic feel.

We truly believe that your choice in flowers really sets your wedding theme, which is why we think these black calla lilies are perfect if you're going for a dark, Gothic theme.  Lilies are often related to funerals and death, but traditionally they signify innocence and purity! Regardless, they are beautiful. If you're not into the lilies, however, then opt for black roses as a nice twist on tradition.

This Gothic wedding cake proves that beauty is in the details.  Seriously, how gorgeous is this cake?! It simple, but so detailed! Covered in swirls, vines and flowers, this cake really helps evoke the feelings of love and passion and it just looks too good to eat!

Or, for something even more dramatic (did you think that was possible?) check out this bloody masterpiece.  It's gorgeous in that American Beauty meets True Blood meets Twilight kind of way.

The first thing you think of when you think of horror and Gothic style are skulls, and we agree with that sentiment.  However, as far as your wedding goes, you may want to hold back on the skulls, as it can be a little too kitschy and Hot Topic for our tastes.  With that said, we think you can use skulls in your decor to add a subtle and interesting look, without coming off as too Avril Levine. Try this silver skull place card holder, for example. It's small, discrete, and tasteful (as far as skulls go), plus it's practical!

Antique rings are both unique and beautiful!  This antique Edwardian ring is an intricate little work of art and would be a perfect engagement ring for the off-beat or Gothic bride.

Sexy & sultry, the birdcage veil is a must have for a modern Gothic wedding.  There is something about it that is just so mysterious and alluring.  Plus, the feathers on top really help to give this a costume-y Halloween feel.

Unique guest books are always fun!  This ultra eerie book and feather pen are a beautiful and unique way incorporate the Halloween theme into your event.  The torn pages are a nice touch and create an aged look and the matte finish on the frame and table certainly add to the drama.

 The Goth bride can't just wear any old dress - she needs a dress with character, something enchanting and a little different. Luckily Claire Pettibone has such a great eye for romantic details and this dress from her 2009 Fall collection is perfect for our post today.  Having a Halloween wedding doesn't have to mean costumes and scary make-up, it can be really feminine and pretty if done the right way.

Double, double toil and trouble.

Jen & Saira

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Color Day: Halloween (Orange and Black)

Better late than never!  We apologize to our regular readers for having to wait so long for today's color post so, without further ado:

 When it comes to selecting color schemes not everyone goes for soft, coordinating colors. Some brave souls take the road less traveled and go for bold contrast. Luckily for those with a flair for fright, Halloween is all about the drama! Orange and black are the traditional colors associated with Halloween, probably due to a variety of things such as darkness, death, and the general orange-y colors of the harvest. Orange and black can be a fun pairing to really get you in the "spirit" of fall, but it can also be elegant and warm depending on the shades of orange you go with.  A vibrant orange will give you that youthful, spooktacular, kind of feel while a butternut squash or pumpkin hue will create a space that feels more cozy and sophisticated.

Black and Orange Halloween Color Inspiration Board

Images from: a variety of wonderful sources that were lost when Jen's computer crashed.  We are working to recover them and will credit accordingly.

Jen & Saira

Monday, October 25, 2010

Orange You Lovely

A good wedding guest will show up on time, not run up the drink tab, and compliment the decor or theme... at least that's our theory. Fall weddings means lots of orange details, and your attire should be no exception! While wearing orange is usually a pretty bold choice, especially at a more formal event, here are some ways to wear the color du jour and still look on fire:

You definitely won't be mistaken for a pumpkin in this sexy burnt orange dress by Elie Tahari.  It's soft and feminine enough to wear at a wedding or formal event, but add a blazer and you're all set for work or a night out. 

If orange isn't exactly your color, you can still look festive with this gorgeous floral necklace featuring orange tones in tiger lilies and hibiscus.  Wear it with a solid colored dress, and allow your accessories to speak for themselves.

Every gossip girl knows that you must have a headband of power to coordinate with every outfit.  Dress yourself from head to toe with this handmade headband designed with flowers and feathers. It's not too over the top, but it's definitely a fun and bold choice. Whether you have a cute pixie cut our luscious locks, your hair will thank you.

While not exactly subtle, this plaid dress plays up fall colors in a more understated way.  The geometrical neckline is only for the bold, but if you can pull it off, you will look sweet and sexy at the same time, as well as very fashion forward.

We're big fans of wearing bold shoes, like these orange satin pumps pictured above (which by the way are identical to the shoes Jen wore at her wedding!) We think it looks best with a more muted color dress, but if you're a New York Mets fan and want to pair these shoes with your royal blue dress, who are we to stop you?!

We're going to throw caution to the wind and say that you can pair this handmade clutch with a number of different colored dresses. Don't worry too much about matching... just focus on not clashing! We love this fabric because it shows different shades of red, orange, and yellow depending on how you hold it. So while you can definitely pair this with your LBD, why not accessorize your cute purple halter dress as well?

Your wrists deserve to be adorned with the warm and rich colors of fall!  We like this pumpkin/squash colored bracelet by Tooli.  At just $30 the price is right, it would look great with any color of the season, and it has little touches of pearls, perfect for brides and bridemaids, that add a refined touch of class.

Orange you glad we didn't say banana?

Jen & Saira


Friday, October 22, 2010

Halloween Planning: More Treats, Less Tricks

Halloween is one of our favorite times of years, and it's only a week away! Almost every year we throw a Halloween party with all our friends, who have the most amazing, over-the-top costumes. And when you have serious Halloween costumes, then you need serious Halloween treats. Here are some ideas on how to get creative and express the true spirit of Halloween:

This looks disgusting, but it's actually delicious! It's just shortbread cookies topped with almonds and a little bit of red dessert sauce. The hardest part is getting the shape right, and adding in the authentic finger lines. But if you can pull it off, then this will be one grossly yummy snack!

Halloween cupcakes are one of the most creative treats to make. The smooth, rounded surfaces makes for a great palette, and there are endless options available online. Rather than provide an exhaustive list, we decided to feature these cupcakes that are to die for! We're not entirely sure how they made the little knives on top, our guess is that they took some card stock, cut it shape, and threw some icing on top. Of course, an all edible version would be perfect, so if you have any ideas how to do this, please let us know! 

If you're not much of a baker, then these vampire cupcakes are for you. We like this cupcake style because it's simple, a little creepy, and a little artsy. Plus they're super simple to make: all you need is vanilla icing and some red gel, and voil√†! You have your own mini Edward Cullen, sorta. 

Halloween doesn't have to only be about candy! Check out these creepy teeth made from healthy and delicious apples! All you need is a half a dozen apples, a sharp knife, and maybe some lemon juice to keep it looking fresh. On second thought, the apple turning brown will make it that much creepier! 

There are many ways to make creepy eyeball snacks (cupcakes, deviled eggs, fresh mozzarella) but we love how squish and slimy these lichee eyeballs look! They're pretty easy to make, you just need some fresh lichees, strawberry jam, and blueberries. Of course, we're not sure how many of your guests will want to actually eat these... they look a little too real.

Another simple, but very festive option, are these blood test tube shots. Fill them with anything you want, fruit punch, jello shots, what have you, and throw in some little gummy spiders to add some extra spook to it.

These tombstone pudding cups are very detailed, but require very few ingredients! You just need some dark chocolate pudding, cookie crumbs, cookies, and some chocolate icing. The little flowers are a good touch, but if you're feeling especially morbid, you can also throw in some little skeleton hands!

Happy Halloween!

Jen & Saira

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Color Day: Black and Purple

Jen's back from vacation, and just in time for this week's color day!  Let's dig a little deeper into the holiday of the season and explore some excellent color combinations for Halloween themed or Gothic style weddings or parties.  Of course we'll do the traditional orange and black in the upcoming weeks, but before we get to that, we figured we could show you some other takes on Halloween that are sure to create a dark and down right spooky kind of event.  Orange isn't for everyone.  So if you love Halloween but sunshine orange makes you cringe, don't fret.  Purple is sexy and classy enough for the modern bride, but creepy and eerie enough to take the phrase "til death" to a whole new level.

Halloween Black and Purple Wedding Inspiration Board

Jen & Saira

Monday, October 18, 2010

Coffee, Anyone?

Whether you work, go to school, or are a full-time mom, coffee is a must. Due to our busy schedules, however, we barely have a minute to sit down, relax, and enjoy a hot cup of joe. Since we're always on the go, everything must be instant and portable, which means hot cups and thermoses are a girl's best friend. While thermoses and coffee mugs have long been a staple in every household, never have they looked so cute!  Here is a selection of travel coffee cups that are fun, chic, eco-friendly, and a perfect gift to any coffee (or tea!) lover.

We love bright colors (green and pink are our favorite), which is why we're starting off our list with these simple, stainless steel travel mugs by Crate and Barrel. They have a soft grip handle and boast two-hour heat retention, and the different color options means you can get one for every member of your family! 

If you want to really save time, then try out this travel press mug which allows you to brew the coffee in the mug. This two-in-one travel mug brew the coffee and simultaneously keeps it hot and smelling / tasting fresh and you won't have to worry about cleaning the pot!

Everything is cuter if you get it in matching pairs! Check out these adorable his and her personalized travel mugs. This will make a cute gift for a new couple, and will ensure that no one fights over which mug is theirs. 

For a smaller version of the traditional travel mug, try this "desk mug" by Senja. Shaped as a regular size coffee mug, it conveniently fits under most coffee brewers, and can be used for travel or at home!

Don't let these low key mugs fool you! Though they may look like a regular disposable coffee cup, they are actually made of a high quality ceramic!  Hand painted by etsy seller, yevgenia, these mugs are re-usable, one of a kind, and sure to keep your brew warm and toasty.

If you love iced coffee, then this clear acrylic Starbucks cup is for you! Durable and reusable, you can make your own iced coffees, or go to your local Starbucks and ask them to fill it up. While the straw can be a little cumbersome to clean, it's super cute and is a must have for any iced frappuccino junkie. You can buy it on Amazon, but it will cost you double then what you'd pay at a Starbucks, so keep your eyes open for this one! Or opt for a non-descript version available at Urban Outfitters.

Don't forget to add milk and sugar!

Jen & Saira

Friday, October 15, 2010

Fall Wedding Tips: It's All in the Details

Traditionally, June has been the favorite month for wedding planning, but we've noticed that fall weddings are becoming increasingly popular.  Perhaps it's the warm colors, the cool weather that keeps your hair looking fierce, or the cheaper venue rental prices, but whatever the reason, we love this trend.  As we always say, details make the event.  With fall weddings, we feel like you can get very creative in planning your wedding and add little seasonal touches to really emphasize your theme.  From food to decor, here are our thoughts on how to make your fall wedding extra special:

We posted before how soup shots are a great appetizer, but how about soup instead of salad as part of your however-many-course dinner?  It's perfect for the crisp fall weather, and you can opt for a traditional type of soups (i.e. Italian wedding) or go for something more consistent with your theme (like butternut squash or pumpkin soup).  Your guests will feel comfy and cozy in no time, and the pumpkin soup looks so yummy we want to bathe in it!

Sticking with food, we've talked about how many brides are choosing cake alternatives for dessert on their big day.  Our favorite non-cake dessert is definitely pie, which is perfect for the fall.  Hot apple pie and delicious pumpkin pie are fall staples that everyone loves, and are best served in the fall.  So forgo the traditional wedding cake and opt instead for a pie table! Or, if you want a little bit of everything, then how about mini apple tarts and pumpkin pies? It's your wedding, so have fun with it. Your guests will definitely appreciate it. 

Instead of coffee with your dessert, try apple cider! It's delicious, goes with the theme, and looks too cute with the cinnamon sticks! Of course, you can always serve this during cocktail hour as well, to help keep your guests nice and cozy. 

While fall wedding colors tend to be bold and vibrant, you can still have a seasonal theme minus the orange and red.  Instead of pumpkins and applies, think harvests and crops. We love this wheat centerpiece, which is so delicate and beautiful, and provides a more muted palette for your fall wedding.

 As for your bridal bouquet, try tying it with some twine rather than with ribbon.  It will give a more rustic, country feel, and add charm to your wedding.  The (slightly major) downside is that twine is so itchy and uncomfortable! Which means while it may look shabby chic, you'll definitely be ready to toss the bouquet at evening's end.  While most brides usually don't carry around their bouquet all night anyway, this is definitely something to consider before adopting this look.

While we do think pumpkins at fall weddings are very typical, be careful not to go too far. Keep it simple with these mini pumpkin candles that help create some ambience around your center piece. It's definitely better than having legit jack-on-lanterns at your wedding, but it adds to your theme and we think it's cute and quirky.  We do think, however, that this look would look better with less bold colored flowers.  Also, use it to decorate the gift table, the card table, or any other surfaces to pull your theme together.

Another fall wedding staple are autumn leaves.  Yes, we know it's fall which means leaves are falling, and it's very cute and all, but we're aware that too many fall looks can be overkill. With that said, we think these tea lights wrapped in bright fall leaves are so beautiful and understated. It works great if your surfaces are light colored, as shown above, because it really makes the color pop without making it look cluttered. 

Here's to falling in love!

Jen & Saira

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Oops, We Did It Again!

We are so very sorry to disappoint all of you who were anxiously awaiting Wednesday Color Day!  Jen is off having the time of her life in China at the moment, and Saira has no idea how to make Color Day happen! We took a little break today, but we'll be back Friday for some fall wedding inspiration!

Thanks for reading!

Jen & Saira

Monday, October 11, 2010

Halloween Look Book: Couples Costumes

Hey, dolls! It's that time of year again, when we start obsessing over our Halloween costumes! Admittedly, we start planning our Halloween costumes months in advance (or a year in advance if you're Saira), but this is crunch time. If you're buying online, you should order soon to get it in time, and if you're buying in stores, you need to head over before they run out! We decided that we wanted to post about one of our favorite Halloween traditions... couples costumes! Sure they may be a little cheesy, and it's usually close to impossible to get your guy to agree to it, but if you can manage it, then it can be a lot of fun! The key to having a cute couple's costume, and not making everyone around you gag, is not taking yourself too seriously. That means no to Romeo and Juliet... unless it's zombie Romeo and Juliet, and in that case, it's awesome.

Before Bella and Edward, there was Doug and Patty.  Episode after episode, young Doug Funnie pined after Patty Mayonnaise, and fans wondered, would he ever get the girl? Well you can answer that question this halloween, by dressing up as the adorable cartoon duo. We found this image at to give you a visual, but honestly, we think you all can do much better than this.  Think big!

One of the greatest love stories of our time... Rogue and Gambit from Marvel's X-Men. Their passion for each other is only matched by their incredible style. If you're a Marvel fan, then this costume is for you. Of course, you can't buy it in stores, so you'll have to put a lot of time and effort into it. But the end result is very impressive.

If you're more of a DC gal, or you don't want to take the time to put together a costume, then this Batman and Robin costume might be right for you! The crime fighting duo make an iconic team, and we just love the colors of Robin's outfit. 

Sticking to the comics theme, what comic book couple isn't as beloved as Archie and Betty? Or is it Archie and Veronica? You can (finally) choose for Archie by pairing him up with one of his best gals. While you can purchase pre-made costumes available online, we're sure you can do a much better job re-creating their look yourself. Let's just hope that if you're Betty, Veronica doesn't show up to steal your man. She can be pretty persistent!

Last year, Saira and her main squeeze opted to go as bacon and eggs. It was fun, comfortable, and incredibly affordable! They spent less than $30 on the costume, which you can find online or at your local costume shop!

Popeye and Olive Oyl are one of the cutest cartoon duos, and make for a great couples costume. It's easily recognizable, not too played out, and Olive Oyl's costume is pretty darn cute. You just gotta convince your guy to wear the fake muscles, to make it really authentic. 

If you're into more traditional Halloween costumes, then how about Morticia and Gomez Adams? Sure, you might have to talk your guy into it, but tell him he gets to wear a sweet mustache, and we're sure he'll be in.  Plus you get to wear a sexy dress and awesome wig, so it's really win-win!

Okay, so this might not exactly be a "couples costume"... but it's a costume idea for a couple of friends, so we think it counts! Alvin and the Chipmunks was one of our favorite shows growing up, and the best part about it (other than Theodore) were the Chipettes! They were the cutest, freshest, and most stylish chipmunks in town. We found this picture online of a trio of girls who did an absolutely AMAZING job dressing the park. While it's a DIY costume, a lot of the stuff you can find in regular stores, so it's just a matter of taking a shopping trip one weekend. If any of you end up doing this, please send us a picture!

Caring is creepy!

Jen & Saira

Friday, October 8, 2010

Japanese v. Brazilian: Hair Straightening

It is a truth universally acknowledged that a woman in possession of curly, frizzy hair must be in want of smooth, sleek hair. This is why women all around the world (including your two favorite bloggers) have been on a constant quest to defy nature and straighten out their unruly locks. Trust us, we know all about it. While hair dryers and straighteners may do the trick, it's time consuming, exhausting, and sometimes ineffective (especially in humid weather). That is why we are here to discuss the pros and cons of two of the most popular "permanent" hair straightening methods, Japanese hair straightening and Brazilian "keratin" treatment. Of course we're not hair stylists or chemists, so we can't attest to the scientific or technical aspects of these straightening methods, but we'll do our best to describe the procedures and can speak from personal experience involving both hair treatments. So here's the 411:

Japanese Hair Straightening
  • What is it? Japanese hair straightening, also known as thermal reconditioning, is a permanent hair straightening technique. There are a number of different brands used, including Yuko and Liscio which are the two most popular brands used. Japanese straightening is an intense chemical process that involves numerous steps which permanently straightens your hair.
  • How long does it take? The process can be cumbersome, as you: (1) wash hair; (2) dry hair; (3) apply chemical solution to hair; (4) allow chemicals to sit in hair for 30 - 90 minutes; (5) wash hair; (6) dry hair; (7) straighten every single strand of hair in small groups; (8) add neutralizer; (9) wash hair; and (10) dry hair. Needless to say, this process is incredibly long and can take up to 6 hours, and then you can't wash your hair for 48 - 72 hours after the treatment. You also can't get your hair sweaty, tie it back, tuck it behind your ears, or do anything that would result in the creasing or otherwise altering of your hair. Basically, rent a bunch of movies, call out sick, and stay at home for 3 days in air conditioning in order to make sure the hair that you spent so much time and money on remains in tact. 
  • How long does it last for? The best / worst part about Japanese hair straightening is that it is permanent. You don't need any special shampoos and you can wash it as much as you want, because once it's there, it's there for good. Of course, once your new hair starts growing in, then you have a problem. From personal experience, you can go about 5 or 6 months without having to worry about your hair, but around the 6 month mark it becomes more noticeable and you have to start blow drying it again, at least at the roots. This is especially true if you have bangs, as they'll quickly turn to waves. After the 6 month mark, you'll eventually have to either get it re-straightened or let it grow out, which can take years. To be fair, the growing out process isn't so difficult if you straighten your hair regularly anyway, because then it's not really noticeable. But because it's permanent and takes a while to grow out, you really need to put some thought into whether you are ready for stick straight hair for years to come. 
  • Does it really work? Yes! It's amazing how well it works. You leave the salon feeling like a brand new person with beautiful, amazing, pin straight hair. It will never frizz, it will always stay perfectly straight, and all you have to do is wash and go. For those of us who have spent hours of our day in front of a mirror sweating with a hair dryer, this is life changing. You feel more confident, your friends stop complaining about how long you take to get ready, and all of a sudden you are picture perfect all the time. The downside is that it makes your hair VERY straight, and at first it feels incredibly flat. You've spent all your life trying to fight the big frizz, and now, all of a sudden, you want volume! But that's nothing a little hair spray and teasing can't solve, and after a month it starts to get more body. If you're been fighting for straight hair all your life, this is a godsend. 
  • What are the cons? Because it's a chemical process, it's damaging to your hair. But let's face it, frying your hair with a hot hair dryer and straightening iron isn't great for your hair either, and it's hard to say which is more damaging. Based on personal experience, Japanese straightening doesn't cause hair to feel any less healthy, but after a few years of getting it straightened, you may notice that your hair feels more dry, less manageable, and may even start falling out more often. This isn't common for everyone, and can be solved by treating yourself to some deep conditioning (which is probably good to do even if you don't chemically straighten your hair). Also try using products such as Biosilk, which help repair your hair and make it feel soft and silky. Finally, as mentioned above, it's permanent! If all of a sudden you decide you want to have soft, lovely curls, you're out of luck. Even after it starts growing out, part of your hair will remain stick straight, so it will take some time until you're able to do other things with your hair. But if you're someone who always straightens your hair without fail, then this really isn't a point of concern. 
  • How much does it cost? Prices for Japanese straightening range from reasonable (considering how long the process is) to flat out absurd. If you do your research (and you can comment / email us for our research in the New York / New Jersey area) you should be able to find a good salon that will straighten your hair for less than $200. Most salons start at $400 or $500 -- please don't pay that much. But never go to a salon unless you have it on good authority that it can be trusted. Your hair is too precious to risk!
  • Bottom line: Japanese hair straightening is perfect for those of us who wish they were born with straight hair. Yes it is time consuming, expensive, and permanent, but if you really want it, then these things are just trivial concerns. But if you're not ready for such a permanent change, then keep reading!

Brazilian Hair Straightening
  • What is it? Brazilian hair straightening, more commonly known as keratin treatment, is an all natural protein treatment that makes hair silky, smooth, and incredibly soft. It's not a "straightener" per se, but does have the effect of smoothing out curls. It should be noted that there is a difference between brazilian straightening, which involves 2% formaldehyde, and keratin treatment, which involves absolutely no chemicals. However the terms are often used interchangeably, and the most popular brands contain no formaldehyde, including Coppola, Rujvenol, and Salon Tech. However, be wary when going to a salon, and do your research, because some brands are being called out for including formaldehyde despite claims to the contrary.
  • How long does it take? The process is a bit faster than with Japanese straightening and can take up to 4 hours, depending on where you go and what treatment you use. For most brands, you (1) wash your hair, (2) dry it, (3) have a chemical placed on your hair for 30 minutes until dry, and (4) straighten every single strand of hair. Then you can't wash it for up to 72 hours, and can't tie it up, tuck it behind your ears, or do anything else that would crease your hair. But with the Salon Tech treatment, after step 4, they put a neutralizer on your hair for 10 minutes, wash it, dry it, and then you're done! You don't have to wait another 72 hours, you can tie your hair up, there is absolutely no waiting period.
  • How long does it last for? Unlike Japanese straightening, the keratin treatment is NOT permanent.  It fades with each wash, which means you want to try to wash your hair only a few times a week for maximum retention. How long it lasts also depends on the brand, with Coppola technically lasting up to 4 months, and Salon Tech technically lasting up to 6 months. We say technically because from our experience, the products fade a lot faster, although your hair does remain more manageable for entire 4 or 6 month period. The key to keratin treatment is that you cannot use any shampoo that has sodium chloride or sulfate in it, which means you have to buy special shampoo for keratin treated hair. This is easy to find at any beauty supply store, but costs about $20. The upside is that because you won't be washing your hair as often, you'll use less shampoo anyway! 
  • Does it really work? The goal of the keratin treatment is not to straighten your hair, but to make it healthier and more manageable, which it definitely does. It makes hair beautiful, shiny, and very natural looking. It doesn't create pin straight hair, which is why many women prefer it. Your hair does become straighter (for some people, it looks like you had it Japanese straightened) but even so, you can still curl it if you want. But in reality both the Coppola treatment, and especially the Salon Tech treatment, results in almost perfectly straight hair for the first few weeks, although the results will vary depending on your hair texture and amount of curl. So if you want soft, silky, shiny hair that is straighter, then you should opt for this method.
  • What are the cons? To be honest, there aren't many cons if you're using the formaldehyde-free product. The worst part is that you can't get sodium chloride in your hair, which means you can't go swimming! This can be a major drawback if you get your hair straightened in the summer, because you won't be able to partake in traditional summer activities. Other than that, it's completely safe and actually considered to be good for your hair, because it's a protein treatment. Just be careful that your brand is in fact formaldehyde free, because the chemical is a known carcinogen, and definitely not something you want to deal with.
  • How much does it cost? Like Japanese straightening, the prices will vary depending on the salon you go to. Generally speaking, the prices range from $200 to $300, and you should definitely not pay more than $400, especially because it's not permanent. Again, feel free to contact us if you want some suggestions on places to go in New York and New Jersey!
  • Bottom line: Keratin straightening is perfect if you have dry, frizzy, unmanageable hair. While it won't create the pin straight look of Japanese straightening, it will come pretty close, and without the damage. You get all the benefits of Japanese straightening, and you can still curl your hair. And you can always do both. Many stylists recommend the keratin treatment in between your Japanese straightening in order to strengthen your hair, and it's also a great way to grow out your Japanese straightened locks once you tire of them. 
So there you have it, dolls! Hopefully this was both helpful and interesting for you to read. Please feel free to share your own hair straightening experiences with us, and let us know if you have any questions!

Jen & Saira

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Color Day Themes: Ornate Oriental

Jen is currently traveling in Asia, so we thought this "Oriental" inspired color-day would be appropriate.  The underlying color to this theme is red, which can be as subtle or as bold as you want. The key to this theme is the details: go for the take-out boxes, over-sized lanterns, paper cranes, chopsticks, and fortune cookies.  We realize we're blending cultures, but you can pick and choose what look you want to go with. Just remember to be bold, and when in doubt, go for take-out!

Monday, October 4, 2010

Fall Fashion: Combat Boots

If you stepped outside of your house this weekend then you know -- fall is finally here! We posted last week about how the military look is back, and this extends to footwear! Combat boots are a very stylish, and very practical look for this fall. Keep your feet warm and dry and still be in mode. Here are some ways to put your best foot forward:

Play it rough in these chic lace-up combat boots by Steve Madden. Wear them with skinny jeans and a cropped coat, or with tights and a floral skirt for a nice contrast.

For something more edgy, try this zip-up boot by Nine West. Not only does the zipper add some bling, it's a lot easier to zip up than lace up! And you can always unzip just a little and fold over the top for a more casual, slouchy look.

For a non-leather alternative, try this field boot available at Urban Outfitters. It's a slightly more feminine version of the combat boot, with the low heel, subtle stitching, and rounded toe. FYI, the reviews state that the boot runs big, so go for a size up.

Love the utilitarian style, but want something more feminine? Then try on this lace-up ankle bootie from Steve Madden. It's what we imagine the Spice Girls would wear when acting as soldiers during World War I. Rugged but delicate, camouflaged but chic. Power to the world! 

Of course, no list is complete without the classic Doc Martens. These iconic lace-ups are reminiscent of the angst of the early 90s, and if flannel plaid is okay, why not go all the way? Channel your inner Angela Chase (√† la My So Called Life) and wear a floral dress with an oversized cardigan and clunky Doc Martens. You'll sure to have Jordan Catalano asking for your number during study break in no time.

For a more updated look, try this more subtle boot with a plaid lining. It still has the iconic sole of the original Doc Marten, but the lacing, fabric, and shape are a bit more casual. The plaid lining gives this boot a little extra flair, and would be perfect for a day of shopping in rainy November.

These boots were made for working!


Jen & Saira