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Fashion Can Be Fun And Inexpensive

Ever since I was a little kid, I’ve loved fashion and make up. My mother was a hair stylist and make up artist. I would sit by her side as she matched autumn colored pallets against middle-aged women’s faces. She had a passion, and still does, for color and style. She passed it on to me. It wasn’t until I got older that I truly learned to appreciate that fact that hair dye and make up artistry come second nature to me.

In my late twenties, however, I put on a lot of weight and lost complete interest in how I looked. A bad break up can put you in sweatpants and a tee shirt real quick. I recently lost 100 lbs and I feel stronger than ever. I walk, dance and do pilates regularly. I realized one day that none of my clothes fit–they were either too big, torn or just outdated. So I opened a Macy’s charge, and being on a budget, I found a way to replenish my wardrobe with a few classic pieces that didn’t cost me a fortune. Since I walk through the cosmetic section of the store when I go shopping, I’ve fallen back in love with make up. I could spend hours at the Benefit counter or peruse Bobbi Brown and MAC pigment for days. Again, it’s more of a treat. You don’t have to spend a dime to try on a cool lip color or concealer or whatever tickles your fancy. I’ve also opened my mind to different kinds of fabric when shopping for clothes. For the most part, I’m sticking to a basic black, but adding in different materials, such as metallic clasps or buckles which break up the mundanity, while still letting you have your black (you can never go wrong with black).

Style & Co Buckle Cable Knit Sweater Vest from Macy’s




Black leggings are also the best. Stylish and comfortable, they come in every single size and style imaginable from petite XL, XS, 2x, Tummy Control, Comfort Fit. Pair those with a textured, black shirt and a metallic accessory and you are golden, girl. Puns intended.  HUE or Style & Co. from Macy’s are perfect for leggings and if you scour that clearance rack like me, you could get in good for under $20. Old Navy also has inexpensive leggings. Remember, fashion is about fun and you don’t have to spend a ridiculous fortune. Don’t forget to coupon away, girl. Coupons are your friend!

Eyebrows on fleek.


Zdjęcie zamieszczone przez użytkownika Kim Kardashian West (@kimkardashian) Wł.

Someone needs to alert Kim Kardashian that she is not Bob Geldof from “The Wall” and her model friend isn’t Mentat from “Dune.” That said, I’m loving the adventures in eyebrows this year, for both men and women. Eyebrows are like a HUGE thing now. I mean, they were always huge, but they’re enormous now. Women and men are wearing them bushy, pencil thin, shaving them, filling them in or not having any at all (Amanda Palmer). I think they’re all gorgeous. I use the Stila waterproof liner in black to shape mine. My foundation always varies, but I typically use Dermologica mixed in with a Burmax or Dior liquid. The Benefit So Gorgeous mouse foundation is a moisturizing dream and you probably won’t need to premoisturize, but by all means, use Cover Girl–use whatever you want. If you do go the higher end route, sign up for the Sephora or Ulta cards and rack those coupons.

The Dark Burgundy or Vibrant Red Lip? The vibrant red lip is the Fall staple right now. Gorgeous. I’m using the Jean Iredale lip gelee kit. It stays on forever. But NYX also makes some great reds. NYX is a constant go-to for commercial product. They don’t test on animals, and though their pigments aren’t’ quite MAC, they are still the absolute best bang for your buck. Drag queens wouldn’t front. I premoisturize my lips, then apply color with a small brush and to set it, I will often use a blush or eye shadow. Yes, you have that and you can do it. Lip liner is also a great way to make your color last. No, you don’t have to spend a kazillion dollars on 24 hour lip colors that are full of lead. Don’t be afraid to use an eyeliner on your lips or a lip pen on your eyes, etc. Pigment is pigment. Remember that.


So black dress, red lip. All you need this fall and you are good to go. It’s refreshing to also see some nice new patterns, as well. Lots of animal prints and Aztec designs mixed in with metallics. Gorgeous. Don’t be afraid to mix it up to and make sure you put that bass in your walk, girl. Now, in the infamous words of Dame RuPaul, SASHAY AWAY!!



About Kristen Damasida

Writer and Photographer for Virago Magazine, Kristen grew up listening to vinyl and highlighting the dictionary. Her work has appeared in IrockJazz.com, The East Harlem Journal, Boston's Culturehive, the Ithacan and other publications. Her love of music cannot be eclipsed by her love of words. She's been coined the "Akira Kurosawa of Blogs" by such people as herself. An aspiring musician, she has a serious penchant for peach-flavored anything, multi-tasking, slow-paced thrillers and dreams of going back to South America, laying on the beach, and drinking from a coconut.

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