Pre-Instagram I was basically an Instagrammer- like in real life.
Let me explain.
Picture me driving around the Whole Foods Parking Lot, maybe it’s like 2009-ish. I see a pretty, cool looking girl carrying a BADASS, big cross-body camo bag. There she is with her uber high ponytail, bouncing around after sculpt hot yoga balancing a green juice & an iced cinnamon coffee rocking white Nikes ( I can immediately tag those in my mind because well…the logo is so recognizable ). Her whole #OOTD is for sure Lululemon– you can tell you know? Like it’s just another one of those brands you can spot, no problem. Now the sunglasses are CLEARLY Ray Bans- another brand that’s super recognizable. Those polarized aviatorsare iconic. The situation is feeling complete because now I know where she got her sneakers, top, bottom, & sunglasses…HOWEVER, LIKE HOW-FUCKING-EVER, what on God’s earth is her bag? I RACK MY BRAIN FOR MONTHS- I LOOK EVERYWHERE IN STORES- this is sort of pre-online everything. I search Nordstrom, Forever 21, Abercrombie ( VINTAGE! ), you get it. I can’t find it ANYWHERE. It’s kind of the most frustrating thing in the world- not being able to find something you see that you know you NEED.
For months it was like PLEASE OH PLEASE where did this random yoga chick get this cross-body camo bag that is just the perfectly-sized bag which I don’t think I can live without. My brain spins: “Wow it would look so cute with my new off the shoulder black top & skinny jeans.” “Or even I could use it for travel- I can picture myself casually hoping on the plane to Las Vegas, feeling chic in cameo.” “It’s SO ME, I need it…NOW.”
So basically, my brain looks over the situation & ‘TAGS’ her in real life.
Again, pre-Instagram. Stone age days really.
CUE to 2010 WHEN INSTAGRAM launches. And then!!! Then YOU GUYS!!! Instagram released this thing called TAGGING. Have you heard of it? Yes, I know, I know- I’m sure you have. We all have but here’s the thing: there appears to be this epidemic that we’ve got going on. Well it’s not just something I’m seeing, I feel like it’s something a lot of people are seeing. Something that I feel like I need to talk about. It’s honestly the rudest thing on Instagram these days.
Because it hurts you know, when an influencer, celebrity, or really anyone wears a very cute outfit & doesn’t tag. Actually, hold up- I can understand sometimes people don’t tag ( sometimes I don’t tag, but always, ALWAYS answer questions! ) BUTTTTT for the love of God, if there’s 234 comments in the comment section asking you where something is from, please answer! Especially if you’re answering other comments- answer outfit questions. Us, girls need to know. It’s like a thing.
( …I can’t with the tag where’s there’s 45 tags on top of each other so you can’t see either ).
People are voyeurs. We want to know things: what’s that ketchup brand? Why are you mixing chile flakes in it? What products do you use in the shower? Do you like Summer’s Eve? Who’s your favorite hair stylist? What’s in your ice coffee? Which filter do you use on Instagram? What calendar App is that? Why is your skin glowy? Botox or a new skin care routine? What shirt, skirt, headband, nail polish, sneaker, necklace, etc is that?
LIKE GREAT #OOTD POST WITH THE SUNGLASSES EMOJI, BUT WHERE CAN I GET THOSE LOAFERS?
QUESTIONS! They’re real on social media- people say people are glued to their phones & less social. I would beg to differ. People are given the opportunity to get SUPER social with people all over the world. Now we can find the outfits we’re looking for- not fake versions, the real versions because of Instagram. So if you’re going to get social, get social & SHARE. Thoughts?
I mean I would argue that word of mouth, in the digital space is stronger than ever.
People just like recommendations from other people. They always have, they always will. Advertising is great & all- but hearing a recommendation from a friend takes the cake. You feel like it’s been tested in an authentic ( I do hate this word, but for lack of a better word ) way.
WHICH IS WHY TAGGING OR ENGAGING IN THE COMMENTS SECTION, is so important! Even if you’re not a blogger.
Besides…who really wants to be one of those girls- you know the kind. You’re in the restroom at a local sushi joint on a Friday night just washing your hands before your hot sake & cucumber/avocado roll & it goes like this:
Me: “OMG!” I love your shirt it’s so cute!! Where’d you get that?
Girl who lies: “PHEW, EER, UH this old thing? It was a gift from a friend a long time ago. I don’t know where she found it.” ::rolls her eyes::
AWKWARD SILENCE…because she knows exactly where the top is from.
Me: well, GEE WHIZ it’s super cute!
::Also me: sees the exact top on THE NEW, NEW section on Revolve’s site the very next day::
Sharing is caring! Especially on Instagram in 2017.
Ok, I can’t take full credit here- I actually decided to write about this topic on The Skinny Confidential after reading “The Rudest Thing You Can Do On Instagram” by Amelia Diamond on Man Repeller. I have to quote some of her musings because she is just so good:
“But where it manifested the strongest was in my urgent, impatient need to know what absolutely everyone is wearing at all times on Instagram.
I was spoiled by bloggers. I don’t follow many, but the ones I do tag their photos with diligence. Crease-free hair tie down to toenail polish, they show their cards, palms open. I also appreciate that they tag locations— plus other important things that I might need to know in the case of an emergency. I began to count on the fact that I could tap a photo ( lightly, so that the tags appeared, but not so intentionally as to like it, god forbid ) and be provided with a dossier of information. Information that I could use, or not use. Like the diner’s meal I inquired about, I just wanted to know what the deal was.
Habit fully formed, I found myself pressing photos of my friends, colleagues, adversaries and non-friends whose pictures appeared on my discover feed, in search of answers their lack of accompanying copy failed to reveal. Everyone was too sly with their captions: too vague, too pun-y, too reliant on Emojis. Their words told me nothing and their tags didn’t tell me shit. Great selfie and clever line, but who makes your earrings?Where did you wear them to? Who makes your lipstick? Who designs that couch? Who’s in that photo with you? It’s rude! True, in theory, I may have few qualms about asking you but in reality, I have even less time; I’m scrolling! This is my lunch break. To be a civilian eating a meal without a sign on your forehead that reads “chicken marsala” is one thing. To post an intriguing style photo with titillating content & zero context is quite another.
“But I am not a blogger, Amelia. It would be weird if I did that.” You are a human, human! Have some decency. What if I want to buy the shoes you’re wearing? I don’t want to twin any more than you do, but shopping sucks for everyone. Together we could make this easy. To not tag is unhelpful, not to mention borderline stingy. It is the equivalent of withholding a pie recipe because you don’t want anyone else to have it. Save us both the trouble of a DM-slide and just tell me!”
Do you love her? I feel like Amelia gets it. Let’s be like Amelia.
I know you guys feel the same way because within The Skinny Confidential Secret Facebook Group, I see so many girls asking other girls to ID an outfit. A lot of detectives in that group, let me tell you…You guys are GOOD.
But really, wouldn’t it make the world a better place if everyone would just tag? And answer questions? Let’s stop the epidemic, one tag at time!
Now obviously my real life, pre-Instagram camo moment was not the girls fault- I couldn’t physically ask her- I mean, I was driving. But just so you can sleep at night, I want you to know that after 7 years, I found the bag. Maybe not the exact bag- but DAMNIT, I found one that looks JUST like it. I’m thrilled about it & wear it all the time. It’s fab for workouts- kind of everything I dreamed of.
+ GIVEAWAY: giving away the shorter coin necklace I’m wearing here- you can pick out the one you like ( it’s a zodiac necklace ). Anyone can enter. To win, simply tell me your thoughts on tagging on my latest Instagram. Would love to hear your feedback.
++ ALSO, you can find some major outfit posts here.
I feel like at this point we’re online friends. And as my friends you guys know I LOVE A HUSTLER. In fact, lots of posts on The Skinny Confidential are geared towards hustlers ( remember this TBT post? ). I have massive respect for people who do their thing & do it well.
Anyway, I decided to share 5 hustlers who are killing the game right now. All of which happen to be my online friends too. Each of these sweet souls I met online ( OK, OK- besides Becca- I met her at my hair salon like 8 years ago, pre-Bachelor ). But the rest of my friends showcase here, I met through the Internet!
To give you a quick backstory:
First up is India & DRock from Team Gary Vee. Remember when I was on his show a year ago? I met both India & DRock while recording the show & liked both of them instantly. They each have AMAZING energy- I love good energy. But who doesn’t? Each of us kept in touch. Fast forward to now: India actually made THE LUCKIEST MAN IN THE UNIVERSE sign ( like handmade it! ) for the day after my wedding. Michael woke up to India’s handmade song…go scroll my Insta if you want a refresh. If you’re looking for a cheeky sign, India is your girl- just DM her on Insta: @heartbread.
Now DRock & I have kept in touch via Snap message & he’s constantly inspiring me through his Instagram. He’s one of the few influencers that focused on building a community as opposed to a following. I look to his account for inspo A LOT: @DAVIDROCK.
Next up is Becca Tilley of The Bachelor. She’s also a blogger now ( we designed her blog at blog-doo!! ). Becca is a cool-ass chick. I met her at a hair salon a long time ago & always thought she was SO PRETTY. But she also has a pretty spirit. What you see is what you get with her, you know? And she has GORGEOUS HAIR!! Be sure to check out Becca’s blog where she featured The Skinny Confidential.
Jennifer Jaden is a HUSTLER, man. I admire what she’s built with Societygal. It’s a community of women who collaborate. No competition- just support. Highly recommend you guys check her out. She was featured on TSC Newsletter too- if you’re subscribed you know I love to do HUSTLER editions.
& last but certainly not least is Cara Alwill. Cara & I met through Twitter. I liked her immediately. You will too. She’s an author x 3 ( see below ), motivational speaker, & blogger!!! Also Cara interviewed me on her rad podcast, Style Your Mind. I like her podcast A LOT for women entrepreneurs. Basically she’s inspiring, inclusive, & welcoming.
India K.: My name is India K. I am an interdisciplinary artist working in mostly photo and text based installations. My work has been exhibited worldwide. Somehow, I also find time to be a producer at VaynerMedia in New York, an agency run by entrepreneur Gary Vaynerchuk. Prior to being a producer, I had the privilege of working closely with Gary on his personal brand team, creating and curating his content across all platforms.
David Rock: My name is David Rock and I’m mostly known as DRock. Growing up I always wanted to be a filmmaker and now I’m a story hunter & filmmaker working with Gary Vee. Essentially I’m a Vlogger following Gary’s day-to-day operations as he runs Vaynermedia, the fastest growing digital agency in the world. I’m also madly, deeply in love with New York City and have a love affair with burgers & sneakers.
Gary is the hustler of hustlers, how did you go about applying ( I’m sure this is a whole story ) :
IK: My story is actually fairly traditional when compared to DRock! I was living in New York and working at American Apparel as a sales associate. I knew long term I wanted to do something different, but I wasn’t sure what. My best friend was working at Vayner and encouraged me to apply. I didn’t think I had the necessary skill set for a digital marketing agency. I actually didn’t even know who Gary was (this is a sore topic for him ha). I applied anyway. Within a week, I was hired for their entry level position, Community Manager. That was 2012. Four years later, I’ve had many different roles, made some of my best friends, and I’ve been able to meet Gary and have him become a mentor to me.
DR: Ever since I was a child, my parents instilled hard work into me. They said I could do whatever I wanted as long as I worked hard. As early as I could remember I was doing chores around the house and by age 12 I was working with my dad on construction sites. By 14, I had three summer jobs and kept this up until I graduated. All of those jobs taught me how much I didn’t want to do something every day I didn’t like to do. I promised myself that the day I started to do what I loved I would work my very hardest.
When I first moved to NYC I took any and every odd end job until I eventually landed at Best Buy in Soho. From that moment on I promised myself no more “standard jobs”. I quit and worked for free on the set of a few TV shows and an independent feature. Those were amazing experiences but I didn’t want to be the guy holding wires. I missed filming and editing. I stopped taking those gigs and decided to start my freelancing career.
I made nothing, I ate nothing and I posted hundreds of ads on Craigslist in “talent/gigs”. That’s where I made most of my living until I started to get reoccurring clients. Again, I worked every minute. I learned how to market myself and also began to “up-my-pricing”. I did this for a few years and eventually heard of Gary. Once I figured out what he was about I offered up my services – more than once. The kicker is that initially I was trying to get Gary on a podcast a buddy and I had started called “The Launching Creative Podcast”. I was going to …give give give and then ask but at some point Gary offered me a job. Do I think I’m working harder? No. Do I have more time to work on my craft ( because I’m not looking for more gigs, or worried about where my paycheck is coming in? ) yes.
Day in the life at Vayner?
IK: What to say? Every day is a little different and that’s why I love it there so much. Typically, my day to day involves crafting narratives from the footage our amazing videographers capture. Every video has a story and I kind of step back, take a look at the larger picture, and help shape that. I’m also talking to clients, writing, curating content, introducing people to what we do at Vayner, and of course, drinking a lot of coffee. And lunch. Got to make time for lunch.
DR: There is no standard day – it ebbs and flows. Most of the time I follow Gary in and out of meetings wherever he is. Generally though, the team meets and we discuss the current days content and the next few days of content. Then we brainstorm more ideas for the week.
What’s different about the Vayner workspace?
IK: We just moved into a beautiful new building on the west side of Manhattan called Hudson Yards. As someone who has been at Vayner for four years, I’ve seen three different offices now. They get nicer and nicer. But they’ve always had the same principles: open, inviting, and community focused. I like that I’m always able to look up and look around and see people. Nothing worse than being stuck in a box.
DK: I work more directly with Gary on his personal brand & not so much at “Vayner”. The interactions I have when at the workspace though are amazing. The culture really sets it apart.
Favorite part of working at Vayner?
IK: The people. Hands down.
DR: The people. Everyone has such positive energy and truly knows how to work together as a team. They are family.
Best advice to give aspiring entrepreneurs?
IK: Remind yourself, often, that you’re your own worst critic. You’re going to be really hard on yourself. You’re going to expect big things. You’re never going to feel like you’re doing enough. But just remember: doing anything is something. As an artist, I can sometimes feel like I am never satisfied. But we are really tough on ourselves. The exercise I use is to ask myself “What would you say to a friend in your position if they were doing exactly what you’re doing?”
The other thing I am a big supporter of is self care. There are nights when I beat myself up over going to the gym or doing a face mask instead of working on a new piece. But you can’t make your best work if you yourself aren’t your best. It can feel overwhelmingly necessary to constantly be working. But taking the time to check in with yourself, to do something for your health, mental or physical, is so important.
Oh and don’t put the word “entrepreneur” in your Twitter bio unless you like, you know…actually have a business I guess? Even Gary doesn’t have it in his bio, you guys.
DR: Ask yourself if you are a number 1 or if you’re just being prideful. Then ask yourself if you are better as a 2, 3, or 4, and learn, learn, learn. Then maybe one day you’ll be a number 1. Also, be good to people and don’t try to get anything in the first 1-5 years of your relationships, life is long.
Best advice from Gary you’ve ever received?
IK: No one is going to do it but you. It sounds simple, but at the end of the day, your outcome only depends on you. Execute. Do it yourself. Don’t read about doing it, actually do it. You can talk and plan and sit all you want but nothing beats actual action.
DR: Patience. Patience not only for the things you want to happen but patience with everything. Once you get a grasp that life is long your behavior changes- from how you treat everyone around you to every scenario you are in. You see, at some point I realized my mom was 60. I realized how much she still wants to do & what motivates her. That’s when you begin to understand just how much time you actually have.
What’s next for you?
IK: Become an incredible producer. Get even better at pitching new clients. Grow my confidence. Make more art. Take more photos. Some day, long term: be an artist full time and own my own exhibit and shop space that focuses on art by female identifying artists. The future is female :).
DR: What’s next? Hard work, be good to others, & patience :).
Hello everyone – I am Becca Tilley. Some of you may recognize me from visiting your local fast food restaurant, but I would assume the majority of you probably know me from The Bachelor ( seasons 19 & 20 ).
Ok tell us all about Bachelor Nation.
The term “Bachelor Nation” makes me LOL every time I read it/hear it. I love The Bachelor- not only the people who were on the show with me but also all of the people who get SO invested in it every season. It’s basically a giant family who dates everyone….not weird, right?
Why blogging? Tell us all about your blog, the good, the bad, the truth, the nitty gritty.
I am going to tell the truth. I was very hesitant in jumping into the blogger world. There was this fear and insecurity in the reality that I only have this following on social media and different platforms simply because I was randomly selected to be on a huge TV show. But then I realized, if anything, it made me respect these amazing women who started from nothing and have built these amazing careers just by working their butts off and doing what they love. I have a lot of people helping me with this blog- it has been a team effort (heavy emphasis on team). The girls helping me have been patient angels and it has really challenged me, trying to figure out what my style is and stretch myself.
Advice for new bloggers?
ASK QUESTIONS!!! Every single person who has started a blog had to ask questions.
What’s a day in the life of Becca?
Every single day is different for me. I honestly love it. I have had jobs where I woke up and did the same thing every week, so this past year has been fun getting to go and do and be in charge of my time.
Favorite healthy snack?
OH MAN. I don’t have many of these, but I do LOVE pineapple!!! ( going to the fridge right now. )
Best kept skinny tip?
I have a lot of people ask me how I stay fit when I eat so bad. The answer is mainly genetics, however- I do like to be active. I like basketball and tennis & also just the classic walking. Just get up and move- endorphins help everything!
Workout routine? Favorite workouts? Basically how’d you get in such insane shape for the show?
I tried to be active on a daily basis for the show. I promise, when you know you are going to be on national TV in your swimsuit, it gives you a new motivation. For the first season, I hiked a lot. The second season, I only had two weeks to get ready, so I focused on ab work and things I could do at home.
Two staples in your wardrobe you can’t live without.
Just based on the show, I think people were surprised to find out I have a sense of humor. I came across very timid and shy on the show, so I think people who follow me on social media are thrown off that I have a personality.
One piece of advice that you practice everyday.
Lately, I have been trying to focus on the people who matter to me. It can get lonely in Los Angeles, but I seriously have the best people in my life.
I hope they always know how much I appreciate them!
Jennifer Jaden: Hi TSC readers — I am Jennifer Jaden. I am the founder of Society Gal a community of over 40,000 female creatives and I am also a personal branding coach to female entrepreneurs who are wanting to create sophisticated and powerful strategies in their business and want to show up in a big way.
Basically I help people take their business online and make them look good!
What makes you a hustler?
JJ: I’m a hustler baby, I just want you to know… Does Jay Z come to mind to anyone else when they hear the word “hustler”? No… Just me? Haha okay, well to be honest, I have been a hustler since day 1 — I had to be. I had to be resourceful and know how to make things happen NO MATTER WHAT. That’s just how I roll. My first job ever was selling Spice Girls post cards at recess. What can I say? I was a natural born entrepreneur! I made like $40 each recess — well until the principal called me into the office & shut it down.
I always have to be working on things and moving forward, I guess Lauryn and I have that in common, she is relentless. Real talk, I feel so passionate about what I do, I mean I am helping women live out their dreams by giving them tools to build incredible businesses and share their amazing stories. So I will proudly call myself a hustler.
Have you had bumps? If so, what and how did you deal with them?
JJ: Lots of bumps, I think I mentioned in a past interview that I suffered from a chronic illness that left me bedridden at times. And although I have come a long way it still affects my life. I am a different person than I used to be but I think that is just part of growing. I know I will get back to 100% soon and everyday I feel better and better. I just have to say be grateful for what you have now. Don’t ever take for granted your health, love your body — it really is a miracle.
I think we all go through challenges and each of ours is unique. I think it’s healthy to really feel it and experience it but don’t let it ever consume you. I am a big believer in “this too shall pass” and it really is true. Hold on tight, build a solid support team and give yourself room to feel it. You never know it may be preparing you for a future of helping others with similar issues.
How have you maintained a popular brand on the Internet?
JJ: The key to really captivating your audience is knowing it. You have to understand who you are talking to and why. Understand what they like, what they don’t like. Where they hangout, where they want to hangout. Knowing them inside and out is key. That is what has kept me successful + ‘popular.’
I always get the question “How do I know what to post on social media and when?” My answer to this is: If you want to ensure you’re optimizing your engagement with your brand you need to get really clear on who your ideal target audience is and think about how their day goes.
Are they a busy mom who is up bright and early, taking their kid to school? Or are they more like a party animal who doesn’t roll out of bed until noon? It’s really absolutely necessary to understand what your target audience is doing so you can schedule your posts/content according to their routine. Think, “How can you show up in their day and relate to them? How can I show up and really help them?” Once you have mastered this you will have a brand that is solid gold, baby.
Tips for other hustlers?
JJ: Don’t give up so easily. I truly don’t believe in failing. I think you “pivot” ( thanks for that Amber-Lee Schneider ) when things aren’t going as planned and re-strategize. Everything is a learning experience so look at it like that. Don’t take yourself so serious and have fun with whatever it is you are doing.
Number one branding tip?
JJ: Stay consistent, I truly believe that is the key to success. Show up even when you have 5 followers and the only comment you get is from your grandma who just learned how to use social media. I have seen so many of my besties become super successful in this online world by making sure they show up everyday, even when the going gets tough–– because let’s face it, it will.
That’s just life.
Also remember to stay true to who you are and your morals. Just because “jane doe” over here is posting naked photos with #sponsored tea DOESN’T mean you have to and that it’s the only way to be successful. Stay true to you and do what feels right for you and your own brand.
Where can everyone find you?
JJ: So you can find me on Instagram at @jenniferjaden. Make sure to let me know you read this article and what you liked! I am all about DM’s and commenting back!
Cara Alwill:The Champagne Diet was literally inspired by a glass of champagne. It was 2008, and I was on a mission to find happiness. I thought, at the time, the only way to achieve that was through a diet. I imagined if I lost weight, all my problems would go away. In my quest to find a diet that would allow for alcohol ( I mean, duh! ), one of my coworkers at MTV ( where I worked at the time ) suggested champagne. I was SOLD. She explained that champs only had about 90 calories per glass, and “all the models drank it.”
Champagne did quickly become my go-to drink for a healthy lifestyle, but it also quickly became a metaphor for living effervescently, celebrating every day, and making beauty, happiness, and glamour a top priority in my life. I noticed when I held a glass of champagne in my hand, I felt different. When I heard the bartender pop open a new bottle, it elevated the energy in the room. I fell in love with champagne and everything it represented.
I started living what I call a “champagne life.” I made a vow to only allow the best into my world: the best relationships, the best clothes, the best foods, the best work, etc. I completely transformed my mindset and I knew I wanted to write a book about my experiences to inspire other women to do the same. I started a blog and began sharing my personal stories. Vulnerability became my passion and I loved connecting with my readers simply by being real. That blog eventually did turn into a book – six of them to be exact! I also became a certified master life coach so I could help women in a professional sense through my own experiences. I now have a blog, my books, and my podcast, Style Your Mind, where my mission is to help women design their thoughts, empower themselves, and build beautiful lives.
CA: I simply follow my intuition and do only the things I am madly in love with. I cut out all the bullshit from my business that doesn’t feel right. I have literally created my dream job so it doesn’t even feel like “work” to me anymore. Hustling is a privilege.
What is your go-to beauty tip?
CA: WATER! I drink half my body weight in ounces every single day. I add lemon most of the time. And also a good sweat. SoulCycle a few times a week gives me an insane glow that I could never find in a bottle.
What is your morning routine?
CA: I wake up without an alarm ( I find them to be really aggressive ). I immediately do my gratitude ritual, thinking of 5 things I’m thankful for before even touching my phone. I put on mood music ( the “French Cafe” station on Pandora is the best ), light candles, & make my coffee. I always wear pretty pajamas or a robe because I believe that a little glamour never hurt anybody. I have to feel good when I begin the day. I also love diffusing eucalyptus oil. It helps stimulate the brain and boosts your mood.
Tell us about launching your podcast?
CA: I never had a plan to do a podcast. I loved live radio. But after having my own radio show, I realized I was cutting out so many women around the world who couldn’t listen due to internet restrictions or time zone issues. A good friend suggested doing a podcast and I have never looked back. I love how intimate it feels. As a writer, I’m so used to putting everything into pretty words on paper. But the podcast is real and it’s raw and it’s on the spot. I don’t go in and edit it. It’s one take. And getting to have inspiring conversations with women ( & men ) I love on the show is such a treat. It has quickly become a top-rated show in the self-help category on iTunes and passed over a quarter of a million unique downloads in like 5 months. Mind. BLOWN!
I truly love it & can’t imagine not having that connection with my listeners.
I arrived 15 minutes late because…NYC TRAFFIC. So sorry but I guess it’s just real life you know- I mean I was late to my wedding. I’m working on it.
Immediately upon arrival I met so many incredible women ( some with their boyfriends! ). The turn out was insane. I think there were about 100 plus people at Oficina1m at one point. Oficina1m is practically the cutest place on the planet & the owner is so chic it hurts. He set up champagne, tequila in teacups, hummus platters, tons of tiny bites, Bliss & Baker Krispies, etc for all the lovely TSC readers. So big THANK you to Oficina1m for hosting- I’ll be back.
Rebbl was kind enough to provide some herbal, organic elixirs for those of you who don’t like alcohol.
I wanted to say HI TO EVERYONE- there were so many cool women in one room. And it was overwhelming in the best way possible. Really couldn’t get enough. Next time we may have to do a full dinner because I can assure you there will be more TSC meet-ups in the future. They’re just a fun way to connect you know?
Some of you guys really had me laughing- seriously a VERY FUNNY/WITTY group!
Michael was in the middle of 100 women- so that was hilarious to see too. I feel like he maybe was slightly nervous- HA! Estrogen everywhere.
( In fact, if you’re in San Diego- there’s a meet-up happening this Sunday! I’ll be doing a live Q and A too. So e-mail me if you’re free and I’ll send you all the details ).
A little breakdown on TSC goodie bags:
Firstly, thank you to my friend, Alyssa of The Haute Brunette. Along with blogging she runs THB Marketing House which is a digital marketing agency in New York that connects influencers with brands for collaborations. They work with fashion, beauty, & lifestyle products as well as local events or Fashion Week. Everyone who works at THB is an influencer so all the brands are badass, nothing cheesy. If you’re an influencer you can sign up to start working with their brands. Alyssa streamlined the goodie bag swag & helped coordinate the event! She’s the shit.
I MEAN SHE DID SECURE V-STEAMS IN THE GOODIE BAG.
WHAT’S A V-STEAM YOU ASK?
Well it’s an ancient Chinese treatment that’s gained popularity in recent years for its revitalizing feeling…for your vagina. Remember when I wrote about vagina steaming?
For those of you who need an update a V-STEAM is a relaxing, detoxifying, spa treatment for your nether regions. Fun fact: it can also increase your libido.
We gave away coupons to VSPOT– & they use a festive formulation of herbs like basil, calendula, mugwort, marshmallow root, wormwood, & rose petals and place them in the tube on the v-steamer which contains purified water. The herb infused steam dilates the blood vessels to increase blood circulation by providing oxygen to the area, and in turn, relaxes the pelvic floor muscles.
UMMM HELLO YESSSSS.
Anyway, we also threw in COOLA SPF 30 to keep it on brand, organic Brazilian Bronze Soho Tan coupons ( I did a custom anti-aging tan while I was in NYC & LOVED IT ), Kind Snacks, & more! I mean what more can you ask for? A vag steam with a spray tan, sunscreen, & healthy snacks sounds pretty TSC to me?
Since you’re all so supportive of The Skinny Confidential, I wanted to share the love & showcase some bloggers who attended the meet-up. Collaboration > competition. You all are shining examples of that. SOOO…
+ if you attended the NYC meet-up & you’re a blogger- email me so I can add you to this list!
My girlfriend, Jules Wick, did my makeup. If you’re in New York City you have to check her out- she’s so talented. We did full coverage on my face because SHIT NEW YORK WEATHER is hard on the skin, and a flirty lash ( fake, of course- go for Ardell WISPIES if you’re on the hunt for the best falsies ). You can check out Jules’ rad Instagram– especially stalk her if you’re in NYC. My other girlfriend, Shawn Knudsen, did a bubble ponytail with clip-in extensions. She’s been on the blog before- she gave you guys a tutorial on a kitten curl here, remember? Shawn was visiting her sister, Emilie. Emilie’s a photographer so she shot the whole meet-up. If you’re a blogger in NY- check her out too! Both of them did an amazing job- what a team. YESSSS. Love these badass women.
To everyone who came out to meet me & Michael: I LOVE YOU- YOU ARE AMAZING. Each one of you is doing amazing things- it was such a proud moment to meet you guys & talk one on one. I will DEFINITELY do this again. Any feedback is welcomed. Maybe we will live podcast next time? Thoughts? Oh, & WE LOVE YOU, NEW YORK! What a city- from the truffle pasta ( a Blake Lively fave ) to the culture to all you hustlers…I’M IN LOVE. Thank you, thank you for coming out to sip dry champagne & tequila out of teacups. So fun.
I want to make sure everyone who came out got TSC MEAL PLAN– if you didn’t, please e-mail me: firstname.lastname@example.org.
To wrap it up: I’m falling asleep at the computer. It’s been a jammed packed day & tomorrow is going to be non-stop. I’ve got some fun beauty/wellness posts lined up for you. In the meantime make sure you listen to the two podcasts we collaborated with this week! First up was The LadyGang– they’re HYSTERICAL & then the day after we were on The Bitch Bible…who’s a real hoot. Trust me, these are two podcasts that CRUSH IT. You will love them both, promise. Besides podcasts are so PERFECT to listen to while driving, cooking, doing makeup, cleaning, you get it.
Ok so not much of an intro here because I feel like a lot of you already know Weslie. I mean she’s guest posted on The Skinny Confidential many times ( see here: coffee enemas, hair care, tricks & tips, eyelash extensions ). You can also find her on her new & improved blog, Double You Dot ( my blog design company, BLOG-DOO, actually designed her new blog with her husband Brono…& it looks SICK AF ).
Weslie is a breath of fresh air.
I actually met the mommy of 3 on Instagram 5 years ago & clicked with her immediately.
She’s a very down to earth chick who beats to the tune of her own drum. Seriously though, Weslie makes you feel like you’re in her inner circle in the most relatable way. She’s the farthest thing from catty & is all about collaborating. Basically she rocks.
Her husband, Brono, is super creative & her kids are just SO, SAHHHH CUTE. Like they couldn’t get any cuter.
Ok so I’m going to be guest posting on her blog in the next two weeks— be sure you’re following along! On that note, let’s dive right into BEAUTY…SPECIFICALLY FOR MAMAS.
It’s Friday. Grab a glass of champagne, maybe some Cheez-Its, & get comfy because Weslie is going to break this shit DOWN. Shall we? Alright:
Lauryn asked me to share a few mommy beauty tips, and before I could even finish reading her email I already had 2 tips that I’ve been dying to share with you right off the bat.
Guys, these are a game changer. Long gone are the days of glueing strips to your eyes, applying coat after coat of mascara, or carving out time for lash extension fill appointments.
These things seriously upped by makeup game while saving me time and hassle during my makeup application and removal routines. They’re easy peasy, lemon squeezy… while giving you extra dramatic flare.
I have three kids.
Three still pretty young kids at 8, 5, and 2 years old. This means I’m right in the thick of it—I’m at that stage where I’m highly needed for every little thing-by every little person. Emotions run deep, and energies are high 24/7 around my house. I don’t know about you, but for me as a mom, I just don’t want to make the time for extra fussiness in my beauty routine. Less is most definitely more these days.
This is why I explain myself as the beauty minimalist. I want the least amount of stuff on my face as possible while looking put together and like I actually tried. This means that I expect the few products I do choose to use to make a very large impact. These OneTwo magnetic lashes definitely do just that for me.
The photo on the left is my natural lash with a light coat of mascara, and the photo on the right was taken less than a minute after the first, but I’m wearing my magnetic lashes.
Pretty crazy difference, eh?
So…how do they work?
♡ There are two lash strips per eye.
♡ You separate the lash strips and place the first one on top of your lash line.
♡ Then you take second strip and place it underneath your lash line.
♡ The magnets do their job and connect, then they are secured to your lashes.
In simpler terms….you sandwich your natural lashes in between the two magnetic lash strips.
I’ve been wearing mine since November, and they’ve never slipped out of place, or have fallen off once. I love that they accentuate the outer corners of your lash line, and that they’re not too obnoxiously fake looking. No one has come up to me yet and said, “Whoa I like your false eyelashes!”….This is major plus for me.
There was a learning curve when I first started to wear them. For starters, I found out that they look best when you apply a base coat of mascara concentrating on the middle, to the inner corner of your natural lashes. This helps to blend the magnetic lashes with your natural lashes more seamlessly.
Figuring out how to actually put them on took a few trial applications, but after a bit, I got the hang of it. Now I can put them on in about 15 seconds per eye. Seriously quick, guys.
And the same goes for taking them off…I pinch the outer corners together, then gently lift them away from my natural lashes. That’s it.
It may all sound too good to be true, but it’s not. They’re real, and I love them.
2.) My second mom status beauty hack is MICRO-NEEDLING.
It’s my opinion that micro-needling ( also called dermal rolling ) is the future of at home anti-aging skin treatments.
So what is it?
The idea behind micro-needling is this:
You gently roll the entire surface area of your face, neck, and decollate with a tool covered in hundreds of tiny needles, then you apply an anti-aging serum to sleep in overnight.
This sounds scary, I know. I didn’t like the idea of hundreds of tiny needles stabbing my face either, but guys, it’s not that bad. It’s really not! The needles vary in size and even the teensiest, tiniest needles work wonders.It feels more poky and scratchy, rather than that sharp pain people associate with needles.
The needles puncture microscopic valleys into the skin.
These valleys made by the needles do a few things:
♡ Create a direct channel for anti-aging products to dive into.
♡ This makes the product penetration much deeper, and perform better than they would without micro-needling.
♡ Micro-needling creates a very controlled wound.
♡ With any wound on the skin your body sends extra collagen and blood to the wound. More blood flow means more oxygenation to that area, which increases cell turn over rate.
♡ Cell turn over rate is the rate in which skin renews itself. The faster this is, the more youthful your skin will become. And extra collagen helps the skin’s elasticity…plumping it up and making the skin more firm and bouncy, rather than saggy.
Do you see how micro-needling is really a one/two punch? You’re creating better product penetration with your anti-aging serums, while simultaneously “waking up” your skin and reminding it to renew and rejuvenate itself more often.
Consistent at home micro-needling, paired with the right topicals, can change the game for skin texture, uneven skin tone, & lines and wrinkles.
Micro-needling used to be solely done in med-spas and by dermatologists, but more recently companies have come out with at home micro needling kits, which is sooooo amazing for us moms! I use this one by Rodan and Fields because I trust that its surgical grade steel needles ( important, guys ), and it comes with all the proper cleaning tabs ( equally important ). And the serum capsules that this comes with can’t be beat. Plus, how adorable! Little capsules! I die every time I break one open.
3.) The final mama beauty hack—well, I had to think about this one….
So you know how on Wednesday’s they wore pink? Well, on Thursdays, in my family, we groom.
I know this tip might seem a little obvious, but it’s the best/most realistic mom-in-the-thick-of-it with multiple young children tip I have to offer.
It’s this: condense all grooming and beauty treatments for yourself, and your children, into one block of time on the same day every week.
Create a routine and carve out time to make it happen…or it just wont happen. I know this from experience.
I do this because what mom on earth really has time to pamper herself and three, four, or maybe even five other tiny humans on a day-to-day basis? The answer: NO ONE!
This Thursday ritual ensures that my basic grooming and anti-aging skin care treatments ( plus my kid’s needs ) are met on a weekly basis.
Before our Thursday ritual came about I would haphazardly treat my children’s and my own grooming on an as-needed basis. Like blindly catching fly balls in the dark…I would just tackle things as they flew at me.
I’m neither proud or ashamed to admit that before our Thursday beauty day I would go weeks without shaving…weeks, and months without exfoliating my skin. My nails were always chipped with old polish covering over even older polish. My armpits at times would start to resembles Miley Cyrus’—but unlike Miley, I most definitely wasn’t trying to make a point. My hair was dried out from bleach, and my eyebrows were severely untamed. You get the picture…I was a bit of a slob-kabob.
And my kids….ohhh honey! It felt like at least one of them at any given time had raptor claws as fingernails….I just couldn’t keep up.
To be honest though, I didn’t see any of that.
I was seeing my kids faces instead. I was putting food in their bellies and making sure they had homework done, and clean clothes to put on. More important than looking good has always been feeling good for us, so, I put all of my attention on making myself and my little tribe of little people feel really good.
The downside of this was that my life felt a lot like that game Whack-A-Mole. This way of tackling things just as they popped up made our days more chaotic and complicated, and much more scattered.
So, out of sheer desperation (and a few scary photo moments where I really couldn’t believe it was me I was seeing in the picture) I came up with our Thursday grooming ritual. I decided to hit everyone’s basic grooming needs on the same day, in one block of time, every week.
I broke it down into 4 categories; hair, skin, body, & nails.
Our Thursday nights look like this:
I put raw coconut oil in mine and my kids’ hair and wrap it up in Saran Wrap. I let that sit and soak in for about three hours.
Weekly hair moisture mask…check!
While our hair is soaking up all the coconut oil goodness, I switch gears and focus on my face.
I tweeze any weird hairs, clean up my eyebrows, then pull out the big guns.
I use my PMD self microdermabrasion device all over my face to quickly take off the dead skin cells built up over the week, then I micro-needle my face, neck, and chest.
Lastly, I apply my anti-aging serum.
I dry brush over my entire body working off the dry/dead skin, then give myself an airbrush tan. Yes! I spray tan myself! …And It’s easier than you may think…
My favorite solution is Norvell Organic. It’s organic ( obvi ), and free of parabens, allergens, and never tested on animals. Major plus.
You have to let the airbrush tan sit on your skin for 2-3 hours before you can shower, so in that chunk of time (plus, the oil is still in our hair, remember) I pop popcorn, put on a family movie and go through the kids one by one and do a mini pedicure/manicure on each of them, then turn to my own nails.
Our Thursday ritual has quickly become one of my family’s favorite traditions. It’s been wildly successful! We all look a little kooky during the process with oily hair, and me especially with an overly bronzed body, but we’re in it together. We know no one is coming over, and we’re definitely not going out.
It’s the best multi-tasking family thing we do—- popcorn, movies, and girl talk ( with two added boys ), & getting what needs to be done, done. I’d call that killing two birds with one stone.
So, if you’re a mom with multiple young kids…try this out.
Get organized & condense everything into one chunk of time, once a week and stick to it. Pretty soon it will be routine and everyone will be one the same page. It’s awesome!
The other day I was speaking at a conference & someone asked me about the importance of keeping all social media platforms consistent.
For some reason I immediately felt compelled to write a blog post about this specific topic.
BECAUSE MAN THIS IS OVERLOOKED.
Think of it like this: YOU ARE A HOUSE. Or a building- whatever you prefer here. Each room should be cohesive with the other rooms. I mean unless you are Disneyland where there’s a new brand behind every door, keep your shit consistent. No one wants a modern house with a Western guest room, cartoon bedroom, bright pink bathroom, rainbow themed kids room, & antique kitchen.
I mean maybe some people do? But personally I like the story to flow. I like a good brand.
Let me explain further.
Say you’re a blogger.
On your blog all your photos are super dark & kind of mysterious, let’s say even fashion-y…loving it. Your writing is kind of guarded too. So then I head over to your Instagram to follow you because I’m loving it & all your photos are light, bright, airy, feminine & your captions are super open with a bunch of food pictures. Ok. Hmmm. AND then I decide to check out your Snapchat & it’s all about makeup. Instead of doing the font in your typical black & white, your fonts are yellow & red. Lastly, I go to Pinterest & it’s all Pins of the Kardashians.
Do you see where I’m going with this?
It’s all over the fucking place.
If you’re going to go for the dark, mysterious, fashion-y feel have it reflect on all mediums.
To create a brand, a platform, a community, a strong foundation- the brand needs to shine through on each medium.
And this is why it is so IMPORTANT on social media to do you. Not do anyone else but you. Because here’s the thing, if you’re doing someone else- it comes across as confusing. It’s almost like an awkward identity crisis.
Ok so now I’m going to speak from my experience here. And just because this is my experience doesn’t mean it’s yours. Everyone is different.
I built The Skinny Confidential carefully.
Before I launched the blog 6 years ago I literally took a huge-ass poster board from Rite-Aid and wrote 6 million words of how I wanted the site to “feel.” Feel meaning how I wanted you, the reader, to feel when they left the site. Like what was YOUR EXPERIENCE.
I picked a FEW ( a FEW guys out of 6 million ) of these to represent the brand of TSC.
Words like: inspirational, feminine, FUNNY, casual, easy-going, & even a phrase: “leave feeling like they can live life on their own terms by being the best version of themselves” or “beat to the tune of your own drum.”
I mean I certainly didn’t want you guys to leave the site feeling shitty or bad about yourself. In fact, I wanted the opposite. For you to feel empowered & inspired. For you to feel like you YOU WANT TO GO DO YOU in every way. FOR YOU TO LIVE ENTIRELY ON YOUR TERMS. To not listen to your parents, your friends, your live-in BF ( who may or may not be a loser? ), or even to me.
I wanted you to leave the site feeling like you- yes you, can be the best damn version of yourself. And you can start today…Or maybe tomorrow- because you might need a glass of wine first?
So everything I do with each medium needs to portray that very TSC message.
Simply sharing my outfit & my lunch with you day after day is not enough. It’s just not.
For the record: beautiful fashion & lunch shots work for a lot of people’s blog & brand. It didn’t for mine. Know your audience. Know your brand.
I wanted you guys to leave with tips, tricks, hacks, any kind of value that revs your engine.
Ok so that was kind of a tangent but you get the drift.
To take it a step further it also needs to represent my brand.
My pictures are bright, white, light, with a pop of color. I want them crisp & clear always. Also it’s important that they’re cool, I hate a warm tones. SO every single platform has the same airy feel.
The goal is when you see a TSC picture anywhere, you will recognize it.
As for something like Snapchat, I’m not going to start using colors like red & blue because it’s just not the brand’s colors. You know? This may sound stupid. You may think “who cares it’s Snapchat?” But no. Snapchat is a huge extension of the brand.
Little, small steps everyday create success.
Fonts & colors are little but they matter.
Another extension? Captions. I want my Instagram captions to feel like you’re talking to me. If you meet me in person & I’m different from this exact voice on my blog & my Instagram, then I haven’t done my job properly. Because the way I write is the way I talk.
Overall my job is keep the brand going in the most cohesive way.
Ok wait though, let’s talk about the podcast. The podcast needed to GO WITH THE FLOW OF TSC. Of course I was bringing on masculine energy when Michael decided to be my co-host. That was thought out though. It wasn’t some random decision I made in the shower while dry-brushing. The decision to bring masculine energy into the brand was meticulous. There’s something Michael brings to the table that I can’t bring. I think it gives the brand a dynamic.
And if you know me, you know I LIVE for a good dynamic.
Make sure when you pick your branding elements that you’re also evolving the elements simultaneously on all platforms. For instance you don’t want your Instagram to have professional, bright photos & your blog to have iPhone bright photos because you’re too lazy to take professional photos for the blog. Keep evolving while the brand grows while keeping the feel, experience, colors, shapes the same.
A smart woman told me a while ago: ALWAYS GROW. ALWAYS EVOLVE. ALWAYS GET BETTER.
My hope is that in 5 years from now I look back on this post, even on my Instagram with where it’s at now, & I have evolved. Evolved in a way that is cohesive to the overall brand.
If you guys like posts like this PLEASE let me know because subjects like this get me going. I’m happy to answer any & all questions too.
On that note I am eating alone ( sushi & egg fried rice ) at a restaurant & I feel like they’re about to play Semisonic’s song CLOSING TIME. Like I gotta go. HA.
See ya tomorrow, lauryn x
+ be sure to listen to the latest episode of the podcast because IT’S OUR YEAR ANNIVERSARY & we did call-ins.