Camel Sweater and Cognac Ankle Boots

cognac booties with jeans
camel sweater
camel sweater outfit
how to wear ankle boots
camel sweater

We had a few weeks of spring-like weather but we're back to a "real" winter and I'm swapping out my springy tops for my winter sweaters. There's nothing I love more than a classic sweater and I love the camel tone on this one by Lucky Brand. The subtle dolman sleeves give it a really relaxed feel yet the color keeps it classic. I also love how it's cozy for winter yet still lightweight enough to take into spring paired with shorts or white denim and sandals.

I love having a classic pair of cognac ankle boots and this pair from Nordstrom BP look great with an ankle length jean or your favorite denim cuffed at the ankle. Personally, I love these high-rise Levi's for pairing with ankle booties.

As always, thank you so much for reading!

x, Tyler

Photos by Jessica Kay Photography

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Vacation Prep: What to Pack for Mexico

mexico vacation style

Planning a vacation is always an exciting thing but undoubtedly almost always comes with added stress, as well. Though once you have your dates lined up, your ticket booked and your time-off requested, in comes the fun stuff: planning your itinerary and, of course, the outfits

I feel lucky to be able to travel to Puerto Vallarta, Mexico at least once a year and thought I would share my vacation planning process, i.e., what I consider essentials in case you're planning a tropical trip of your own. I'm sharing some looks from previous trips but you can see more from my Mexico Vacation Style post from last year, as well. 

So, without further ado, here’s what I pack + a few things I have my eye on:

casual vacation style

Start From The Bottom

Shorts

Skirts

When I'm traveling to a warm-weather destination like Mexico, I always like to start with my favorite bottoms as an easy base for any ensemble. Be sure to bring along essentials like shorts! For a week-long trip, I like to rely on a trusted pair of denim shorts in my favorite wash (light and high-rise), add in one more denim wash (like white) and then bring a couple easy-breezy styles in linen or something lightweight and silky that just feels soft and effortless. Having a couple fun and/or breezy skirts is perfect, as well.

Note: On the plane, I will usually either wear a pair of leggings or jeans I can use in case of cooler nights, though I find I never end up wearing jeans once I get there. Do check the weather though because you can get rain! Leggings come in handy when you want to take off on an active excursion, as well.

white off shoulder

Add Basics

Linen and cotton knits that keep you comfortable and cool are a must and are something that always accompany me on a warm-weather trip. I like to have a couple effortless tanks, tees or bodysuits and even comfy off-the-shoulder styles in neutral tones that will pair with everything. Your basics will be perfect to throw on with any of your shorts/skirts or wear with leggings for day hikes or excursions. 

mexico vacation style
off shoulder vacation style

Try Tropical Statement Tops

This is my personal favorite part of vacation outfit planning. I tend to rely on classic pieces for my everyday wardrobe but like to be a bit more fun, flirty and festive for my trips to Puerto Vallarta. I still love a fun top in classic white but will also gravitate towards a few more bold tones like yellow, oranges and corals and look for statement sleeves, off-the-shoulder styles and anything with fun hems and details like cutouts, lace and crochet.

Basically, don't be afraid to mix in any of your favorite trends. I also love summery prints like gingham, floral or boho anything and even crop tops that pair perfectly with high-waisted bottoms.

mexico vacation style
vacation style
white lace romper

Dresses, Skirts and Rompers

What’s the easiest thing to throw on in warm weather? Dresses, of course. Pack along a comfy knit, a maxi dress for day and night and, depending on your travel length, 2-3 sweet summer dresses and/or rompers. Again, I love boho details and bold tones here. 

off shoulder striped bikini

Swimwear

Swimsuits

Coverups

I like to bring 2-3. One for sunbathing (think bandeau styles for minimal tan lines), a sporty style for outings like jet-skiing, snorkeling, etc. (love a halter for this) and one extra just for fun. I think I might try out a one-piece here but consider cut-outs and off-shoulder styles. Don't forget the coverups! 

Shoes 

I am not one to go all-out with a suitcase full of shoes so having styles that will work with every outfit is a must. I like to bring a “statement” sandal like a gladiator style. I tend to love metallics that look sleek for day or dressed up for dinner but will also bring a pair in a light neutral tone that looks great with a tan. I adore the Dolce Vita Jasmyn or for this. Espadrilles are great, too!

I also recommend bringing a slip-on sandal (flip-flop style) that gives you easy on-and-off access for the beach or pool. Tkees is a great brand for this! I always bring one pair of sneakers that I wear on the plane, as well.

Accessories

Again, I don’t want to haul around a new bag for each outfit so I tend to bring one neutral and small crossbody and one tote bag that I can use for the beach. This can double as your personal item on the plane, too! Just throw your crossbody in there. I missed the straw/rattan bag bandwagon last season but it’s still very “in,” so I have my eye on a few sweet, circle bags. 

In terms of jewelry, I think it can be fun to have a statement piece to dress up an outfit for dinner but it's so hot that I really don't like having anything heavy on me. Save the space and avoid post-packing tangles by opting for your daily basics. These Gorjana rings and a comfy, soft banded watch have become the only things I wear on a tropical trip.

Don't forget your sunglasses! I will be bringing my classic Ray-Ban's but also found a cheap dupe that I can swap in for days spent on the water so I can enjoy myself without the fear of losing them. 

And that's it! If I missed anything or you have any questions, let me know!

If you're looking for a bit more visual inspiration, feel free to follow my Vacation Style board on Pinterest as I add more there. I will share any more updates here as they come and if it's helpful, I can also add another post with what I've purchased!

Safe and happy travels!

xx Tyler

Current Beauty Favorites

Beauty is not something I normally talk a ton about on my blog and Instagram but I shared this photo of my current favorites (both new and old) on Instagram recently and a few of you reached out requesting a review, so I wanted to get something up for you. 

Before I start, I thought I'd share that I am by no means a beauty expert but (at almost 30 years old—ack!), I've definitely had my years of trials and can say I have always done my research on products. I have crazy sensitive, reactive skin, so I am not going to put something new on my face without knowing what it is and when I find something that works, I am LOYAL.

For reference, I've always thought I had combination skin but I am noticing more dryness (especially seasonally) in the recent years and (sadly) fine lines. I do notice hydration is key for me and I will get shiny if I am not hydrated. Which makes sense because oily skin is usually producing excess oil to compensate for being dehydrated/dry.

Here are the things I want my skincare to address: dryness/hydration, dullness, fine lines, lack of radiance, plumpness, and (my most stubborn skin problem), hyperpigmentation, aka, acne scarring. Even if I have the tiniest spot—it leaves a mark behind. Womp womp. Finding products that can do all of these things without breaking me out is a true miracle. While I do prefer using more natural products, it's still something I am working towards for my entire regime so you will find a mix of several brands and lines. 

Without further ado, here are a few of my current beauty favorites. 

skincare favorites

1. Sunday Riley Good Genes: This is one of the newer additions to my collection and it's something I was very excited to try. This little lactic acid treatment has some major hype/holy-grail/miracle status surrounding it and was even sold out in-store at Sephora. After reading countless reviews, it's something people are saying has significantly changed the appearance of their skin. Like, made scarring fade within weeks. Can now more confidently be makeup-free. All that jazz. Naturally, I had to get my hands on it. So what is it? 

"A treatment formulated with high-potency, purified grade lactic acid that immediately exfoliates dull, pore-clogging dead skin cells to reveal smoother, fresher, younger-looking skin."

This claims to do all the things from plumping to brightening to addressing hyperpigmentation and even claims to improve the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles in 3 minutes. I started with a free sample from Sephora and while I can't say I noticed a huge effect on fine lines in 3 minutes, it performed well enough to warrant shelling out $105 on 1-ounce. I know it's a lot but this product truly is incredible. For me, the biggest difference has been on stubborn hyperpigmentation on my cheeks. I'm talking those tiny red marks that take months (even more than months!) to fade have been fading in as little as 3 weeks of use. It smells AWFUL but it's really a small price to pay (besides the $100) for such amazing results. I can confidently say it is helping to even out my skin, address dry patches, it seems to be plumping and I am noticing the most drastic effect on redness and those pesky, never-seem-to-fade spots.

Out of all of these products, this is the one I'm most excited about as I feel it's making the biggest (and most immediate difference) in my skin. Really my goal of any skincare product is to help me feel more confident without makeup and this product is doing that. If you have been fed up with never-ending hyperpigmentation, I would recommend running out for a sample of this STAT! Do note, if you are worried about price, you can also find this in the Total Transformation Kit exclusive to Sephora for a slightly more digestible price. However, I did not go that route as it comes with the Sunday Riley Luna Sleeping Oil (which does have rave reviews!) but I am sensitive to essential oils and I only wanted to test out one at a time. 

How I use it: I have been using this 3-4 times a week and apply it as my first step after cleansing, at night only. You can also use it as a 10-minute "flash" facial and as a primer. Neither of which I have tried—yet!

2. Drunk Elephant Virgin Marula Luxury Facial Oil: Another newer addition to my collection but I had been wanting to incorporate an oil into my everyday skincare regimen for some time and when I came across the Drunk Elephant line, it sounded like just what I had been searching for. I've tried others (like argan oil and a couple more fragranced oils) in the past but never had a great experience. Either they didn't seem to have a huge impact or a began noticing clogged pores, irritation and milia (those small white bumps). What it is: 

"A wonder-working luxury facial oil, high in critical antioxidants, to deeply moisturize, nourish, soothe, and rejuvenate your skin while restoring its youthful glow."

Oils can be the magic addition to your routine and provide deep hydration while delivering potent, skin-loving antioxidants. In my experience, oils often include essential oils (think lavender, rose, rosemary, lemon, peppermint, etc) and silicones for slip which are things I know my skin HATES. What really drew me to this oil (and this line!) is that they are free of silicones, sensitizing dyes, perfumes and those fragrant, potentially irritating essential oils.

This is another product I got a sample of first and I noticed an immediate difference in the overall texture and smoothness of my skin. It feels hydrating yet lightweight on the skin and really seems to help boost the radiance and glow factor both while it's on the skin and longterm. Note: it does claim it doesn't leave a residue behind but I didn't find this to be a "dry" oil which absorbs without leaving any shine. This definitely leaves some slip and shine on the skin. But maybe I just overapply! Either way, this is hydrating enough on my skin to use as my sole nighttime moisturizer but I still like to add a separate moisturizer on top.

How I use it: As of now, I use this at night only, after my Good Genes, after other water-based products or before any other heavy treatments. Personally, I don't use it during the day as I haven't found it makes the best base for my makeup. However, I will occasionally pat it on top of makeup to refresh/rehydrate later in the day. The best way to apply an oil? Warm it up in your hands and pat/press (don't rub) into the skin. 

3. Drunk Elephant Protini Polypeptide Cream: I discovered this when I got it as a sample with my Marula Oil purchase and it is pretty perfect. What it is: 

"A breakthrough protein moisturizer that combines an unprecedented array and concentration of actives for improvement in the appearance of skin’s tone, texture, and firmness."

With sensitive skin, somehow a moisturizer is usually the scariest thing for me to try. Too heavy and I risk a breakout. The wrong ingredients and I risk irritation. I find too often that natural lines are also the ones that use plant oils and natural fragrances but these are often the ones that can have the most irritating effects. I love how the Drunk Elephant line uses clean ingredients and none of the potentially irritating, "bad" stuff. This cream is also formulated with a proper PH level to keep your skin healthy and strong. It's ultra soft and smooth and feels incredibly hydrating and I think plumping. Somehow it feels like it has the "smoothing" properties silicones give yet it DOESN'T have silicones which is incredible. Very hydrating and my skin drinks it right up.

How I use it: This is my last step in my nighttime routine. I apply it on top of my Marula Oil. 

4. SK-II Facial Treatment Essence: Another pricey product a lot of people wonder if is worth the hype. Personally, this one is difficult to explain why I love it. But I really do. (Love it!) What it is: 

"An award-winning signature essence that moisturizes and brightens, revealing youthful-looking, radiant skin."

This is made from Pitera which is rich in vitamins, minerals and amino acids that have really amazing anti-aging and hydrating properties. It's a watery formulation and while I can't completely explain what it does, including it in my routine definitely makes me feel more hydrated, even-toned and honestly, younger! For me, I guess it feels brightening yet not in a, "I put highlighter on my face" way, just in a naturally brighter and more youthful way. 

How I use it: I apply this both morning and night. It's the first thing I apply to clean skin in the AM and PM. I will use it on the nights I am not using the Good Genes. It's another one that is most effective when you warm it up in your hands and pat in an upwards motion on your face. 

5. Estée Lauder Revitalizing Supreme Global Anti-Aging Wake Up Balm: I actually discovered this Global line after receiving a sample of the Global Anti-Aging Mask Boost and adored the instantly radiant look it gave my skin. When I have the mask on, it literally gives me a glowy, radiant finish that seemed to instantly mask or "blur" any imperfections. Naturally, I wanted to emulate this on a daily basis and not just in mask form. This is when I discovered the Wake Up Balm. What it is: 

"A balm that firms and deeply nourishes your skin."

That is not very descriptive but all I can say is it's amazing. It doesn't give as strong of a "blurring" effect as the mask but it definitely helps instantly with luminance/radiance, fine lines and plumping. It is amazing for days when your skin feels especially blah and uneven and can really help instantly transform the look of the skin. Really great after a night out.

How I use it: I have found I love this as a primer! While it doesn't make my makeup last longer (in fact, it might be the opposite), I find that it helps keep my makeup from feeling cakey later in the day. I do alternate my everyday makeup routine but this has become my favorite go-to, especially for ease during the work week. I've discovered that mixing this with my foundation creates the most supple, easy-to-apply, tinted moisturizer. It just glides on and looks natural with minimal effort. 

6. The Ordinary Granactive Retinoid Emulsion: This is a new-to-Sephora line and, truth be told, I haven't had enough time to try it out yet! The prices of this brand are crazy low (I'm talking $8-$10) and this was the only product that wasn't sold out! So I snagged it. A retinoid is something that can make the biggest difference in the skin but typical retinol comes with very irritating effects when you first start using them. Apparently, this next-generation retinoid gives you the same amazing effects without the drying and flaking that is normally associated with retinol. What it is:

"A stable serum emulsion of a next-generation retinoid active that achieves better reduction in visible signs of aging than retinol—without irritation."

My Thoughts + How I use it: Stay Tuned!

skincare review

A few more things not included in this re-stock photo...I also use the Pevonia Propolis Soothing Concentrate daily which really helps soothe the skin and fight breakouts (don't buy this from Amazon/Walmart, I've heard it's not the same!) and always, always apply my Image Skincare Prevention+ 50 SPF in the morning. This is a holy grail sunscreen for me. It feels so hydrating on the skin yet isn't heavy and makes a great makeup base.

I have also recently been seeing an esthetician for (hopefully) more regular facials and it's something that makes such a drastic difference in the skin if you can find someone you love. Since my skin has been so dry, she recommended I do NOT wash my face in the AM and it's something I've been implementing for the last month and a half. I can honestly say it's making such a huge difference in my skin because I'm not washing off the natural, good-for-you oils my skin is producing at night. I've noticed my skin is less dry and feels less stripped, more supple and happy—ha! Note, I do rinse my face with cool water in the AM but do not cleanse.

Let me know if you have any additional questions. While I am no expert, I would be more than happy to help in any way I can! 

As always, thank you so much for reading!

x Tyler

Comfy Sweatshirt for Spring

Shop the Look Below. Nordstrom Top | Levi's Jeans | Vince Flats - sold out, see similar below | Stella & Dot Bag c/o | Ray-Ban Sunglasses

Shop the Look Below. Nordstrom Top | Levi's Jeans | Vince Flats - sold out, see similar below | Stella & Dot Bag c/o | Ray-Ban Sunglasses

grey sweatshirt
grey spring style
comfy spring style
spring style
grey spring style
neutral spring style

I know most of you are still experiencing a real winter but it's been so springy here, I can't help but share some pre-spring favorites. I love this comfy Dream Scene sweatshirt for these in-between days. It is beyond comfy and perfectly soft. I really love the relaxed yet fitted silhouette. I find it flattering when the body is loose while the actual waist is fitted. This one has a lightly banded waist that creates a really effortless feel and makes a half-tuck a breeze.

I also snagged these new Levi's mile high super skinny jeans and I adore the light wash for bringing into the spring season. I have another pair of mile high skinny jeans by Levi's and these ones are much stretchier which I personally love. They don't bag out as much and retain their shape. They also fit a lot tighter through the leg and down to the ankle. Sizing note: I did have to size UP in these. 

I love adding olive as a pop and this Stella & Dot suede bag was the perfect touch of warmth. Are you enjoying any spring weather where you live?

As always, thank you for reading!

xx Tyler

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