I DID THE REVERSE TIE DYE TREND

I love sweatpants, I do. And since being home during quarantine, I’ve seen multiple TikToks of people DIYing the reverse tie dye trend with sweatpants, sweatshirts, t-shirts, and more. Considering I have an abundance of free time, I decided to take a shot at it and really like how they turned out. Not to mention I’ve seen brands sell reverse tie dye sweatpants for $50, but this cost me under $20 so boom.

Step 1

I got my sweatpants from Amazon and the bathroom bleach + cleaner from Target, but any brand works. First, I got the pants wet in the shower and squeezed the water out. After this, with the help of my loving mother, folded the pants (accordion fold) all the way up, as shown in the gif. My mom and I (moreso my mom) are perfectionists so this step took us longer than it should’ve. I don’t think it’s necessary for the folds to be identical on each pant leg, but we tried to make it as even as possible.

Step 2

Next, I rubber banded the pants and sprayed them with the bathroom cleaner + bleach. I sprayed each “section” created by the rubber bands a few times to make sure it was covered with the bleach, then got the back side and gave the sides a few sprays.

When I got to this part I did accordion folds the whole upper width of the pant, since it’s not separate for each leg.
Step 3

After applying the bleach to the pants I let them sit in the shower for 25 min. Once my timer went off I removed the rubber bands and threw them in the washing machine with detergent for a normal wash. The last step is to put your pants through the dryer and you’re done!

Here are some photos of how mine turned out:

VOLUNTOURISM: HOW MISSION TRIPS CAN DO MORE HARM THAN GOOD

This post is not about faith and that isn’t a topic I want to discuss on here, but being that Christian-led mission trips are the subject of voluntourism, it will come into the picture. I am a Christian and was raised in the Catholic community. I even have a small memory of going on a church-led mission trip to an orphanage in Mexico when I was a child. I respect all beliefs and don’t think who you pray to, or don’t pray to, is any of my business nor does it matter. The reason I begrudgingly say this is so it’s clear this is not sh*t post against Christians; I am one, and religion has nothing to do with the following message.

Voluntourism is a term used to describe when people travel overseas to volunteer. For example, mission trips. People pay thousands of dollars to travel and lodge at overseas country, stay for a week or two to complete a “project,” like build a church and complete evangelistic work, and then leave. It’s a billion dollar industry. I have questioned the intentions of people on these trips, but I can’t give you an answer. I assume and like to think the majority of these missionaries have good, pure intentions, but the concept of it all begs the question of how much good is really being done.

One of the most common mission trip “projects” is construction. The part about this that’s wrong to me is there are local people and professionals who are willing and able to do the job. Jobs could have been created for the community by the construction of a “project.” But alas, missionaries fly thousands of miles and spend thousands of dollars to do a job that could’ve been completed without their presence. Not to mention, constructing a classroom isn’t a job that requires people from another country to fly in, it’s fairly simple. This takes opportunities away from local construction workers and masons who could have benefitted from a few week’s paycheck. Even more twisted is one of the reasons people go overseas to do their “project” is because they believe the country doesn’t have the financial means for it. Missionaries think so much of the peoples’ poverty, yet candidly take jobs away from them.

What would be many times more beneficial is donating money directly to the community. This way they can put the money to use how they please and towards long-term things. After a mission trip group builds that classroom they’re gone. They don’t stay to train teachers or support them with a wage. It is much more beneficial to improve education, which simply building a classroom doesn’t do. The citizens know what their community needs, not a group of people from across the globe who are eager to share this experience to social media.

An amazing article written by Mariette Williams for ZORA details her personal experience with voluntourism as a volunteer and later as a group leader and why she’ll never go on a mission trip again. Williams says, “Mission trips are often well intended, but poverty is a complex political and economic problem that won’t be solved with a weeklong trip.” That right there, is exactly what I’ve been trying to say this whole time. There is nothing a mission trip can do to solve a country’s poverty, and especially not by borderline modern-day colonialism.

The most upsetting aspect of voluntourism is the exploitation of children. An article by the Huffington Post talks about Haitian parents who were told and paid to send their children to orphanages where they could receive education and health care. The parents sent their children to the orphanages, manipulated into thinking it would lead to better opportunities, but their children were exploited. Images of them were posted to social media soliciting for funds. When the children returned they said they were constantly hungry in the orphanage, made to do heavy labor, beaten by the “director,” and never went to school. Plus, many of the children were sick from drinking polluted water and malnutrition. It’s also important to address the evangelistic work of mission trips. We’ll use Haiti as an example. According to a 2018 religious demography report of Haiti, 55% of the population is Catholic, 29% Protestant, 15% Baptist, and there are other present denominations of Christianity. These people know Jesus and I’m sure they have the tools to explore Christianity if not.

In conclusion, I do not support mission trips like the ones I’ve discussed. I like to think there are other kinds that have long-term goals for the visiting area, but I believe a lot of people (clearly not everyone, don’t come for me) use mission trips to convince themselves they’re good Christians and living like Jesus did when they’re actually being self-serving and ignorant. If you truly wish to help, donate to humanitarian organizations. Here are some places you can do that: Cooperative for Assistance and Relief Everywhere (CARE), International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), World Food Program USA (WFP).

SUSTAINABLE FASHION BRANDS

I have a post from a while back about fast fashion– explaining what it is, its impact, the whole shabang. I listed a few popular retailers that fall under the wing of fast fashion, but wanted to save a separate blog post for their foil: sustainable brands. These brands work to create quality clothing pieces that will last and are working to make a difference. Unfortunately, no clothing is “good” for the environment– it all has some negative impact, but sustainable companies have a smaller negative impact. Key word: smaller. Below you can see sustainable brands I have or would shop at. There are obviously lots of other options, but these are my favorite style-wise. Let’s love our planet better.

Levi’s

You have no idea how happy I was to learn this company is sustainable. Levi 501s are a staple and I highly encourage every girl and gay to own a pair of these. BTdubs if you have thinner legs like I do, the 501 Skinny style fits like a regular 501 should. It takes over 2,000 gallons of water to make a single pair of jeans, but Levi’s removes water wherever it is possible. Considering this brand is known for their denim and has been for decades, what they’re doing makes a huge impact.

H&M Conscious

Every product from the H&M Conscious line has something about it that lessens its environmental impact. Plus, styles start at $10 which is great for people who struggle with big price tags. This line includes a large range of products with loungewear, intimates, jeans, tees, and nice dresses and tops.

Reformation

This brand is sooooo cute. They have trendy and simple pieces, tons of jean styles, and even wedding outfits like bridal dresses and bridesmaids dresses. As most sustainable brands, they’re really passionate about the topic and have a whole About page on it. This brand is dope and does a great job of being trendy and sustainable.

For Love & Lemons

This is another brand I’m absolutely obsessed with. For Love & Lemons’ clothes are trendy and feminine, but also unique. If I had to pick one store to shop at for the rest of my life, this would be it. It is a little pricier like Reformation, but their clothes will last you longer than a fast fashion brand, which is the whole point here! Talented, brilliant, incredible, amazing, show stopping, spectacular.

New Balance

In addition to the environment experiencing the impacts of fast fashion are the people who make the clothes in very poor conditions and for a low, unfair wage. New Balance seeks to ensure their employees are treated with respect and given a fair wage. They own footwear manufacturers in the UK and US, which is significant because companies will outsource laborers and underpay them. Side note: I’ve been loving the 990 style recently. It definitely had a frat boy moment circa 2015, but I think we need to reclaim it. Love a good chunky sneaker.

Rent the Runway

I’m very much on the wave that is renting clothes, especially formal dresses. Do you know how hard it is to rewear a formal dress? Answer: it’s very hard. Because you look poppin’ in a formal dress you’ll take lots of pictures, share them to social media, and you don’t want to rewear it for second cousin twice removed Tammy’s wedding the next week! And formal dresses are good at breaking the bank. Rent the Runway has super cute formal dresses, but also regular pieces like tops and bottoms. Plus, you can get an extra try-on size for free which is clutch.

Patagonia

My Patagonia fleece jacket and is a go-to in the winter because it does the best at keeping me warm. In addition to creating sustainable, quality products, Patagonia is involved in climate change activism. The brand has a bunch of awesome stories on their Activism page that show the work they’re doing to make a difference and help the earth.

Athleta

Don’t worry, I would never leave you athleisure girls hanging. Athleta claims 60% of its products are made with sustainable fibers and 4% made with water-saving techniques. The brand is also an advocate for feminism and according to their website, 3,212 and counting women have been empowered through P.A.C.E. and Fair Trade. P.A.C.E. stands for Personal Advancement & Career Enhancement, a program that works to empower the women who make their product. And their stuff is cute!

THE SKINCARE BRAND WE NEED TO BE TALKING ABOUT: THE ORDINARY

Ladies, gentlemen, non-binary people, etc., skincare is something we should all invest in because we all have skin and it’s important to take care of it. I just turned 20, so I know my skin is at its prime, but it won’t last forever and before I know it I’ll start aging because that’s how the world works.

If you need to hear this from a doctor here it is, “How well you cared for your skin from a young age and, more importantly, how much you limited sun exposure before age 20 can make a difference in wrinkle formation. But there are still certain inevitable changes that are going to take place.” This is a quote from dermatologist David Goldberg, MD, director of Skin, Laser and Surgery Specialists of New York and New Jersey. The gist of that is we need to give a sh*t about our skin unless we want to look like wrinkly old raisins and to protect our skin from harm.

But skincare is so expensive?! False. This is not always the case. Alas, my solution for you: The Ordinary. The Ordinary is an awesome brand from DECIEM that sells affordable and good quality skincare products. They don’t tests on animals or pay people to, and are free of harmful ingredients like parabens, sulfates, mineral oil, and more. You can find this information on their About page!

I was first introduced to this brand after watching Hyram, a skincare specialist on YouTube. I knew if I was going to spend money on skincare I wanted to make sure the products I’d be using aren’t harmful to the environment or my skin and being counterproductive. I think you’d be surprised how skincare brands that claim to be good for your skin are exaggerating the “claimed” effects and manipulate their customers to believe them with crafty wording and distracting, aesthetic packaging. That’s a whole other issue, so back to the point. In one of his videos, Hyram explains The Ordinary is so affordable because the brand doesn’t spend money on advertising. This made a lot of sense to me because I had never heard of the brand or seen any sort of ad prior to the video.

After watching The Truth About The Ordinary video and a few other by Hyram, I ultimately purchased the Natural Moisturizing Factors + HA, Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1% serum, and AHA 30% + BHA 2% Peeling Solution. The product names are intimidating, but trust me on this. I bought my items online from Sephora, but Ulta also carries The Ordinary and for these three items, I only paid $18.90. Insanity, I know. As for my personal review, I love these items. I use the serum every morning and night, the peeling solution once a week as recommended, and the moisturizer at night since I use one with SPF (important!) during the day. Plus, a little goes a long way so I know these products with last me a while. If you’re wondering, I have fair, combination skin, and little to no acne. My skin isn’t uber sensitive, but I definitely can’t slap on anything and it’s fine. I also tend to break out around that time of the month and see this stuff working as its progressively gotten better. My skin also just looks better now that I’m giving a sh*t about it. I don’t think I ever completely neglected it, but I was doing the bare minimum for sure.

I think this brand is so cool and I really hope this post gives it some more hype because it deserves it. Go check out The Ordinary and watch Hyram on YouTube! Choose fair and performative products, whether its The Ordinary or not.

USE THIS TIME TO CREATE HEALTHY HABITS

It takes 66 days for a new behavior to become automatic. And according to a study by health psychology researcher at University College in London, Phillippa Lally, it can take anywhere from 18 to 254 for a new habit to be formed, but this is all dependent on the person, their behavior, and circumstances.

The city I’m from ordered stay at home exactly a month ago, so I’ve been back home with my family away from my college town for what feels like forever. I’m not going to get into how COVID-19 has affected me and taken away opportunities and travel plans I had because it will seriously send me spiraling into a pit of despair and tears and that is not on today’s schedule. Instead, here’s how I think now is the perfect time to create healthy habits (because there isn’t else anything to do).

The “18 to 254” days part of the fact is not very reassuring or motivating, but the truth is that creating a habit, whatever it is, isn’t easy. However, I think we’ve been cut some slack because pre-COVID we were much busier people.

I know the first week or so of a new habit is the easiest because you’re feelin’ yourself, feeling motivated, but it gets harder as time goes now. However, now that we’re stuck at home, time management isn’t as much of an issue. Plus, I personally feel a lot more guilty about not doing anything physical after sitting around all day. Even if your healthy habit doesn’t have to do with working out, there is a good chance time management plays some sort of role in this habit or why you haven’t made it one yet. You can use this time to focus on it!

My hope is whenever this is all over (I pray it’s soon, stay home mofos!) working out has been made a habit or I can continue to work towards it making one. I know everyone is different and the ultimate test will be life after COVID-19, but it feels good to know I’ve taken this extra time to do some good for myself, and I encourage everyone to do the same. It makes all this uncertainty feel a little bit more bearable and makes me happy to know I’m working towards a goal I’ve always wanted to accomplish.

Hate you rona, you’re the worst xx

TANGERINE: THE COLOR OF SUMMER 2020

I’m calling it, I think tangerine is going to be this summer’s color. I could be completely wrong, but this is what I’m thinking. If I am wrong, it’s a super cute color regardless and I’d like to see more of it! I used to really dislike the color orange in general because I thought it was just icky and bright, but there are certain hues and tones like tangerine that I think are fun and cute. I like peach too and think it’ll be a trend, which is a softer orange. So, here are some examples of this summer’s color. Manifesting it right there.

Free People Convertible Skirt
VG Rough Rider Top
Lovers + Friends Eden Top
Lovers + Friends Bayside Skort
Princess Polly Ream Midi Skirt

FAST FASHION EXPLAINED

What is Fast Fashion?

Fast fashion is a term used to describe cheap, trendy clothes that take ideas from celebrity culture or runways and turn them into garments in stores at rapid speed. Plus, it’s horrible for the environment. Horrible. However, things weren’t always like this. People didn’t used to constantly shop like we do now; it used to be an occasional event that happened as needed. Outgrew your winter coat? Time for a new one. Clothing isn’t made to last like it used to be. Then, about 20 years ago, the shopping culture we have now made it’s introduction.

Its Impact

One of the impacts of fast fashion is retailers using cheap, toxic textiles dyes. This is such a huge issue because fast fashion is one of the major polluting industries. Its distribution of crops, fibers, and garments contribute to environmental pollution as well as soil, air, and water pollution. The textile industry is the second greatest polluter of local freshwater in the entire world. Polyester, a material we all recognize from the tags in our clothes, is derived from fossil fuels. This contributes to global warming and can shed microfibers that can add to the increasing levels of plastic into our oceans when put into a wash. Cotton, another material we all know, requires loads of water and pesticides in developing countries.

Unsurprisingly, fast fashion is harmful to humans– the people who work to get these garments out so quickly. They work in dangerous environments and for low wages. Not only is it hurting the people who make the clothes, but also the farmers who may be working with toxic chemicals that can have long-lasting physical and mental effects. The water pollution affects ocean life, which is already facing a thousand other threats.

The Faces of Fast Fashion

Sadly, there are too many fast fashion brands to list, so here are some of the big names we all recognize: Victoria’s Secret, Urban Outfitters, Topshop, GUESS, Gap, Boohoo, Missguided, H&M, Zara, Adidas, ASOS, Shein, Nasty Gal, and many more.

What You can Do

I’ve very recently learned about fast fashion, and writing this post helped me fully understand its extensive impact on the planet. I was devastated to see so many stores I’ve shopped from on the list above, and while I understand I cannot singlehandedly end the plight that is fast fashion, there are steps I can take to help, and so can you.

Thrift! Shopping at thrift/second-hand stores is so fun to do with friends and it’s a great way to find cute, discounted clothes. As a college student myself, I’m always balling on a budget so I love going thrifting with my friends and a lot of my favorite pieces are from stores like Buffalo Exchange and Poshmark. Plus, if you’re going to buy animal product clothing, which is a whole other issue, thrifting is the only appropriate way to do it. It’s already been bought and sold, so this way you aren’t contributing to the killing of animals for clothing.

Buy better quality clothes. By doing this you don’t have to shop as much, and as a result you’re less supportive of fast fashion. Get a winter coat that will last longer than a single season and you won’t have to spend money on another one so soon. It’s a win-win situation!

Share clothes with friends. Sharing clothes with friends is so fun because it’s an intimate thing (I realize this sounds so weird, but to me it means you trust your friend enough to share something that’s your own with them and that’s senti). Plus, it’s like renting a new outfit! Speaking of renting, that’s something else you can do. Rent the Runway is an awesome company. I’ve used them before to rent a formal dress for an event and highly recommend. They have cute options and you won’t end up spending as much money in comparison to buying something.

In Conclusion

In conclusion, I am very new to the concept of fast fashion. I’m not claiming to be an expert on the topic and definitely not claiming to have avoided all fast fashion brands because I certainly have not- I have a post about my favorite trends from this month and mentioned a pair of shoes I just bought from Urban Outfitters so yeah… there’s proof. I will, however, be more mindful in the future and do my best to shop from brands that are not killing the earth. I love our planet and have made life choices in the past to support the environment, so this is just another one.

I hope this has taught you something about the dangers of fast fashion and the huge impact it has on the earth and us as humans. I learned a great deal more by researching for and writing this post.

I found a good amount of my information for this post from this site, https://goodonyou.eco/ which is a world-leading source of trusted brand ratings, articles and guides on ethical and sustainable fashion. It has a lot of useful information in addition to what I included in here and I recommend looking through their site to learn more about fast fashion and sustainability.

Take care of our earth!

M

TRENDS I’M VIBING WITH

MULTI-COLOR NAILS

The first time I saw this trend was an ad on Instagram for the “all things nails” company, Olive & June, with pastel colors. After some stalking I saw unexpected color combinations like this navy, nude, white, pink, and light blue and loved it even more. I would never think to put these colors together, but it totally works.

MINIMALIST NAILS

Olive & June also has some super cute pics of this style on their Instagram, but it could be just a little polish heart on each nail or in one post there’s cherries on two fingers while the rest are plain with a clear coat. It’s simple, but fun and creative.

BUCKET HATS

As we know, everything comes back. This 90s style definitely made a return last summer and I’m still here for it. I think bucket hats are best worn with a swimsuit/beach day outfit or something casual like a simple top and wide-leg jeans with sneakers. It’s a great addition to sass up any fit to let the people know you’re trendy and hawt.

Kaia Gerber in a bucket hat, need I say more?

REVERSE TIE DYE & TIE DYE

Who knew this was the word for bleach tie dye? Not me. Regardless, I think this is such a cute trend and a fun DIY project! I’ve been meaning to get some sweatpants from Walmart and make my own pair using one of the countless tutorials on YouTube. I also have been loving regular tie dye, but not so much “a unicorn regurgitated onto this hoodie” tie dye. These Urban Outfitters crewnecks are just what I’m talking about– there isn’t too much going on and they could be dressed up or down. Plus, we all love a good sweatshirt.

Urban Outfitters Tie-Dye Crewneck Sweatshirt

FISHERMAN HEEL

I think the fisherman heel is so cute. I got over the platform sandal trend about a month after it got big, so I’m super excited there’s finally an alternative. I just got this exact pair from Urban Outfitters (on sale!) and I seriously cannot wait to wear them this summer with skirts and casual dresses or trendy shorts.

UO Lia Fisherman Heeled Sandal

CHAINS

There is nothing more I love than a good chain necklace. Whether it’s a figaro chain or a chunky link chain, this has been my favorite accessory for a while. They make me feel cool, okay? Plus they’re cute and simple and look great layered with a longer necklace. Also love the padlock that’s on this link chain necklace from Brandy Melville.

MY FAVORITE DRUGSTORE MAKEUP

PRIMER

e.l.f. Cosmetics Poreless Putty Primer $8.00

I think a lot of primers are BS, but I genuinely notice a difference in my skin and pores when I use this primer by e.l.f.

FOUNDATION

Revlon Colorstay $13.99

I’ve tried a lot of foundations, from high end to drugstore and this is my favorite. It doesn’t oxidize, stays on my face, and has a formula for your skin type whether its combination/oily or normal/dry.

CONCEALER

Maybelline Instant Age Rewind Concealer $8.49

This concealer is an OG and has a sponge applicator. They have a good range of colors so you can use it to brighten your face or add dimension and use as a cream contour.

LOOSE POWDER

Colourpop No Filter Loose Setting Powder $10.00

The translucent color of this loose powder is a lot like the Laura Mercier formula AKA it’s the bomb.com

Coty Airspun Loose Face Powder $5.97

Coty Airspun is the OG loose powder. Beside it’s distinct, powdery smell, it’s awesome. As will most loose powders a little goes a long way. Too much = flashback!

BLUSH

Milani Cheek Kiss Cream Blush $8.99

I am completely over powder blushes. They just don’t stay on your face! Cream blushes are easier and I like the look of them better.

Glossier Cloud Paint $18.00

This is my favorite blush I’ve used to date, and although it’s not as affordable as other drugstore options, it’s worth it to me. It’s also lasted a long time.

BRONZER

Physicians Formula Butter Bronzer $15.99

This bronzer is my favorite along with Benefit’s Hoola Bronzer. It’s smells great and has a smooth application. I just noticed Physicians Formula offers a matte finish of the Butter Bronzer, which is what Hoola is, so I’ll be trying that one out soon!

HIGHLIGHTER

Maybelline FaceStudio Master Chrome Metallic Highlighter $8.49

I’ll be honest, I haven’t tried this highlighter. However, it has great reviews and I trust it’s a good product. I have tried the Wet n Wild MegaGlo highlighter and am very confused about its hype; it has zero pigment.

BROWS

e.l.f. Cosmetics Instant Lift Eye Pencil $2.00

For two bucks you can’t beat this product. I’ll never go back to paying $20+ for Anastasia brow products!

EYESHADOW

Morphe 9T Neutral Territory Artistry Palette $12.00

Quality drugstore eyeshadow is hard to come by, but Morphe has quality products and affordable price tags. They have hundreds of options, too.

Colourpop Jelly Much Shadow $9.00

I love individual shadows because they’re just easy. These jelly shadows are so easy to apply and have amazing pigment. Boo-kay is my absolute favorite shade and I use it religiously. They seriously only take 10 seconds to apply!

EYELINER

e.l.f. Cosmetics Expert Liquid Eyeliner $3.00

This is the best drugstore eyeliner on the market and has the best price tag. It’s perfect for creating a winged look or whatever your heart desires.

L’Oreal Infallible Never Fail Eyeliner $9.49

I’ve tried so many eyeliners for my waterline, and this one has the best wear.

MASCARA

Maybelline Lash Sensational Mascara $9.99

I’ve probably tried 50+ mascaras, high-end and drugstore, and I haven’t liked anything as much as Maybelline’s Lash Sensational. It gives my lashes volumes, isn’t clumpy, and doesn’t have a formula that’s drying or too wet.

LIPS

NYX Professional Makeup Slim Lip Pencil $4.00

This product has a 2020 Best of Beauty award from Allure, so you have more than my word that it’s a good product. It’s creamy and applies well.

NYX Professional Makeup Butter Gloss $5.00

Just like their liner, this product is creamy and applies perfectly. I love the fortune cookie color for a nude lip!

Soap & Glory Sexy Mother Pucker Lip Gloss $8.99

Beside butter gloss, I almost exclusively wear plumping glosses and this is my favorite. My mom has been using it for years and so have I. I’ve even gotten my “not super into makeup” friends to become religious users.

SETTING SPRAY

Morphe Continuous Setting Mist $16.00

I just made the switch to Morphe’s setting spray from Urban Decay’s All Nighter because I wanted something less expensive. For half the price you’re getting an almost identical product. Highly recommend.