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by Pretty Mama

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Back to School Style

Mere moments after the Fourth of July displays were taken down and the star-shaped ice cube trays finally cleared off the shelves, the retailers have been pushing back-to-school items. Nonsense, I muttered under my breath, it’s just barely the beginning of summer. How could I possibly start thinking about school already? Planning the kids’ wardrobe is complicated enough, what with balancing style and launderability; I’m certainly not ready to start thinking about my own sartorial persona for the school year!

And yet we find ourselves heading deep into August, and while the weather certainly will feel summery for a couple months more, the new school year is fast approaching. (Before Labor Day in our district! How uncivilized.) It may be a bit soon to be wearing corduroy jeans, chic bomber jackets and fur-lined booties, but it’s never too soon to shop for them! And in the case of mommy clothes, I have to decide just who I want to be at the carpool lane.

Cute-But-Not-Trying-Too-Hard Mommy: The balance I search for. Excellent jeans, a dynamite ballet flat, and a classic little jacket over a floaty patterned top. As the weather cools, she’ll switch to a cable-knit cropped sweater and a swingy wool coat, with a gorgeous leather boot with just enough heel to make her legs look a mile long. Lovely leather mini tote  holds the occasional diaper and bag of Goldfish without advertising it. Runs errands while the kids are at school, but stops for a cup of coffee with a friend and possibly a buzz through the mall for a quick peek at this week’s new arrivals.

Way-Glamorous-I-Hate-Her Mommy: Sophisticated heels, elegant and possibly dry-clean-only trousers or even a pencil skirt with a great blouse, stylishly cut jacket, and fabulous accessories that take her ensemble to the next level. Trim croc-embossed clutch bag is a dead giveaway that she’s not plodding through the supermarket this morning holding onto someone’s hand. Full, flawless makeup (lipstick!) and delightfully frizz-less hair. Far too busy to sign up for mystery reader, the stay-at-homes look wistfully at her as some sort of exotic creature they don’t quite understand.

Cookie-Baking-Adorable Mommy: Preppy to a fault, but classic. Bright colors and simple silhouettes like of-the-moment cargo's, a cute tee and a great cardi in washable fabrics (ok, the occasional cashmere sweater) with chic yet practical shoes say she’s devoted to her brood, but not so overwhelmed that she’s forgotten how to coordinate. Always signs up to bring a (homemade!) snack to the class party and coordinate the teachers’ gifts.

Sporty Mommy: Always shows up in yoga pants, cute trainers and a chic fleecy jacket. Minimal makeup, simple ponytail, sunglasses on top of head. Cute yoga bag and color-coordinated iPod on front seat of hybrid. May or may not have just come from the gym, but implies she takes herself as importantly as her kids. Guaranteed to serve organic lunchbox snacks.

Schlumpy Mommy: Races in late for drop-off and pick-up in baggy jeans and a sweatshirt, usually with unlaced sneakers. Never made up, probably wearing her husband’s corporate-logo fleece jacket, she’s crazy like a fox: no one EVER asks her to help out with the fundraiser, book drive or class photo day. Dresses to kill on weekends.

Whomever I choose to be, however, I have to let my children have personalities of their own. For little boys this season, I’m loving the preppy style at crewcuts: untucked button-down shirts with comfy tees, over worn wash denim or cargo-style pants. And if I can get my son into them, I also love sweaters: striped, zip-neck, or even a collegiate-looking cardigan. (Can’t hurt his rep with the teachers to have him looking smart, right?) Don’t want to get too stiff, so I will keep the edges a little rumpled (I am NOT ironing shirts for my four-year-old!) and the footwear a bit funky. My son loves tees, though, so I’m always on the hunt for great graphics that don’t advertise superheroes or japanimation.

It’s always easier to shop for girls, since the options are nearly endless. Nonetheless, I can still spend hours searching for just the right things for my little princess. I adore jeggings on my little girl, with chic ballet flats or Mary Janes and a sweet sweater. I’m picking up a couple of great jumpers that she can layer with short sleeves in the beginning of the school year and turtlenecks and sweaters and leggings or jeans as the temps cool.

And just in case I can find a sitter for the school auction, I’ll be sure to snap up a darling little dress with funky details in a rich deep color and killer platform pumps  for myself. There has to be life after bedtime, right?

Now get out there and enjoy the warm sunshine while your schedule is still wide open! You can always shop after the sun sets.

xoxo,

Pretty Mama

 


Pretty Mama's Favorite Things

Our Favorite Top For Fall

A few weeks ago I received this gorgeous top from IZ Byer California, and realized within two minutes that it was to become my go-to staple for fall. This soft, cozy stretch jersey top with it's criss-cross neckline and ultra-feminine ruffle is the perfect juxtaposition to a pair of skinny jeans or a sleek pencil skirt. The surplice styling and cap sleeves are extremely flattering and the fit is just right.

The best part? The top comes in a variety of colors (which, of course, I immediately snapped up on Kohls.com!) and will carry your fall wardrobe to new heights of stylishness! I give this top an A+!


Jacadi

Jacadi captures the essence of  “a stylish day in Paris” with its collection of classic yet contemporary separates, accessories and footwear for girls and boys, 2 through 12 years old. Inspired by the beauty of its most celebrated spots—from the Luxembourg Gardens to the banks of the Seine—Jacadi offers up plenty of stylish options for school, weekend and holidays.

Check it out at Jacadi.com


 
Summertime and Feeling Breezy
with Hugo Naturals

Summer means beach days, picnics and driving with the top down.  Summer also means humid days, harsh sun and unfortunately, sweat.  Don’t sweat it and avoid those embarrassing moments with Hugo Naturals Dual-Action Deodorant (SRP: $6.99).  The all-natural, aluminum-free ingredients quickly and easily absorb sweat and odor while avoiding irritation.

Hugo Naturals Dual-Action Deodorants are blended with Antimicrobial ingredients to prevent odor-causing bacteria and Rice Powder to take in perspiration.  With warm weather among us, Hugo Naturals provides a safe, soothing and comfortable way to overcome any ‘oops’ moments this summer.  Available in three variations, Mexican Lime & Bergamot, Unscented and Sea Fennel & Passionflower, Hugo Naturals Dual-Action Deodorant has something for everyone.

Hugo Natural products are vegan and gluten-free with cruelty-free ingredients.  Products contain no parabens, phenoxyethnaols, SLS, PEGs, propylene glycol, petroleum products artificial fragrances or colors.

Hugo Naturals products are available at health and natural food stores or by visiting www.hugonaturals.com.

 


Finally! A Way to be Pore Perfect

What’s the one thing that gets between a woman and achieving a flawless complexion? Visible pores. If you ever wished you could make them just disappear, then you’re in luck. With the Obagi CLENZIderm Pore Therapy, pores will be reduced to practically nothing. Oversized, clogged pores will soon become a thing of past!

This physician-dispensed acne treatment unclogs pores and clears dead skin cells while preparing skin to absorb a liquified serum that targets acne at its source. 2% salicylic acid eliminates residue on the skin and minimizes blemishes.

Individual Obagi CLENZIderm products range from $34.00-$70.00. Visit www.Obagi.com to find a physician near you.


 


SILKtáge Rejuvenating Styling Serum
by Emtage Hair 
is Now Available at Whole Foods Markets and iHerb.com

SILKtáge Rejuvenating Styling Serum contains no silicone, chemicals or preservatives; only sustainable and natural ingredients. The quintessential benefits of SILKtáge lie in its signature ingredients; Camellia Oil (also known as Green Tea Oil) and Monoi Oil, an infusion of Tahitian gardenia flowers soaked in coconut oil.

SILKtáge nourishes every hair type, especially dry, stressed, frizzy hair because it strengthens hair from the root and restores moisture lost from styling heat, chemicals, and the environment. This proprietary Organic Camellia, Monoi Oil-infused blend, along with the delicate essence of Organic Geranium, Organic Rosemary and Wild Harvested Palmarosa essential oils is rich in the vitamins, antioxidants and essential fatty acids that healthy hair needs to shine naturally.

 


Super Skin and Sun Care From Kiss My Face

Kiss My Face’s latest sun products are ideal to step up your skin care for the summer season.  Kiss My Face sun care products utilize natural mineral sun blocking agents, titanium dioxide and zinc oxide to provide full UVA and UVB protection while natural botanicals add to the skin saving benefits. 

SPORTS SPRAYS

  • Sport Spray SPF 50 ($15.99/8 oz)
    • This ultra sweat resistant spray is designed for active people who want maximum protection from UVA/UVB rays
  • Sun Spray Lotion SPF 30 ($15.95/8 oz)
    • The unique trigger spray delivers a creamy, easy to apply lotion that provides full protection
  • Sun Spray Oil SPF 30 ($12.95/8 oz)
    • An easy to apply, oil based, water resistant sunscreen that offers fragrance free UVA/UVB protection

LOTIONS

 FACE

  • Face Factor SPF 30 and SPF 50 for Face and Neck ($12.95/4 oz)
    • Green tea extract, peptides and licorice extract help fight free radicals, stimulate collagen production and help reduce the signs of aging
  • Hot Spots SPF 30 ($8.95/.5 oz)
    • This sunscreen hits the spot — perfect for all those delicate facial areas that need extra protection from the sun and made with certified organic ingredients including beeswax, coconut oil and aloe

KIDS


DEFY Damage with NEW L'Occitane Aromachologie

The summer elements can wreak havoc on your tresses – L’OCCITANE has the solution. These new Aromachologie Hair Collection products (launched August 1st) are formulated with pure, natural essential oils, the products combine nature-derived benefits, evocative scents and rich textures for hair care as efficacious as it is pleasurable. With new additions to the collection — Repairing Smoothing Gloss and Soothing Concentrated Mask — as well as newly reformulated Volumizing Shampooand Conditioner, L’OCCITANE offers even more ways to indulge the senses while replenishing hair.

 

NEW Repairing Smoothing Gloss ($24): The first Aromachologie Repairing product to offer styling and smoothing benefits, this conditioning gloss protects against overdrying, heat damage and breakage, smoothing and straightening hair for a shiny finish. Essential oils of angelica, lavender, geranium, ylang ylang and sweet orange nourish as corn starch provides a smoothing effect and strawberry alpha-hydroxyacids increase shine. Apply to the lengths of wet hair to protect, smooth and control; apply to ends of dry hair to smooth and define curls. The gloss leaves hair manageable, smoothed, deeply repaired and ultra-glossy.

NEW Soothing Concentrated Mask ($24): This purifying, moisturizing mask soothes and protects sensitive scalps, easing irritation and rehydrating. Relaxing essential oils of chamomile, mandarin, cedar, basil and lemongrass work with allantoin and alpha bisabosol to calm the scalp as salicylic acid purifies and panthenol moisturizes. The formula restores skin’s natural defenses against damaging environmental stresses, improving scalp barrier function. While hair is damp, massage the mask onto the scalp in sections to relieve tension and activate microcirculation for healthier hair. Apply the Soothing Conditioner to ends simultaneously if desired.

NEW FORMULA Volumizing Shampoo ($18): This silicone-free shampoo weightlessly restores hair’s volume and shine, effectively strengthening and thickening. A five essential oil complex of artemisia, petit grain, sweet orange, rosemary and palmarosa replenishes and conditions hair as corn starch accentuates volume at the root, and a foaming vegetable base creates space between hair to enhance the volume effect.

NEW FORMULA Volumizing Conditioner ($18): L’OCCITANE’s five essential oil complex of artemisia, petit grain, sweet orange, rosemary and palmarosa nourishes hair as glycerin  moisturizes the scalp and panthenol softens. The conditioner leaves hair stronger, thicker, volumized and easy to detangle. Free from silicone, the formula won’t weigh hair down.


World's Most Fantastic Craft Blog: 
The Sassy Pepper

Be sure to check out The Sassy Pepper Blog! Created by the amazing team of Pepper and Sassy, two very stylish young mommies with amazing abilities in regard to all things DIY, the Sassy Pepper Blog is filled with wonderful ideas for creating, decorating and repurposing to make your life easier, your little darlings more adorable and your home more stylish. From making homemade oreo cookies and building a dream bed for your toddler, to tips on how to throw a Wizard of Oz birthday party or the perfect baby shower, you're sure to be as amazed and thrilled by the ideas in this blog as me! Check it out today — you'll thank me tomorrow!

Check out the latest tutorial — how to add a splash of color to any room!

 


Check Out the Ask She She Blog

The Ask She She Blog, where She She Girls go to find the latest styles and the hottest trends; where your fashion, beauty and lifestyle questions are answered, and the thoughts, ideas and comments of all She She Girls are encouraged and welcomed!

 


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