Broke and Beautiful • Affordable fashion, makeup and budget beauty blog!
The original budget fashion & lifestyle blog about living the BrokeLife! Living the cheap life without breaking the bank. Budget shopping tips for affordable fashion & style, cheap home decor, budget friendly recipes, & free music downloads! We love eco fashion, sustainable design, and environmentally friendly products.
Clear, plastic furniture is not a concept that I was immediately warm to. The hyper-modern aesthetic just wasn’t cute to me. It felt contrived, overly ironic, and challenging for my design imagination to work with. It wasn’t until several years after I saw my first Ghost Chair – a now-historical piece of functional art by Phillipe Starcke, and the OG see-through furniture – that I finally understood my problem: I was viewing clear furniture as a theme instead of an accent. You don’t fill an entire room with see-through furniture! They’re for adding some interesting, contrasting vibes to an otherwise logical and beautiful – perhaps even traditional – space.
And I really should have known, too. The Ghost Chair that Phillipe Starcke created was inspired by and crafted after a chair that belonged to King Louis XVI. Um, that’s not modern at all! And the shape of it doesn’t try to hide its origin, either. The shape and silhouette (were it to have one) are unarguably old-school, when Starcke replicated the shape with crystal-clear lucite, it was a pretty genius move.
Cleverly combining super-old with super-new is never going to be boring, and when that thing happens to be a chair made out of polycarbonate plastic, that makes a high end design idea an option for strict-budget shoppers. Plus, you couldn’t ask for a chair that was easier to clean. Some, including the original, are even meant to be used both indoors and outdoors!
The thing about clear furniture like this, though, is that it kinda has to be plastic. Glass stuff just doesn’t have the same effect as crystalline polycarbonate, lucite, or acrylic. Besides, you don’t want a freaking glass chair in your house – that’s recipe for disaster.
As for how to mesh a clear, modern-art chair into your hand-me-down furniture and IKEA stuff? Just try things! Like we discussed before, tossing one of these futuristic chairs next to an antique desk or rustic farm table is a great place to start. Or, if you’re into a more minimalist vibe, planing one of these nest to an angular, boxy table would give a little curve and motion to the scene. Don’t worry, it will make way more sense to your eyes than it does to your brain, so keep your adventure hat strapped on tight, and go by what you think looks good and brings you joy.
Do you have one of these ethereal, clear chairs in your house? If so, how did you style it? Do you use anything as a cushion, or drape anything over it to signify to other people that there is an invisible chair there? Leave your tips to owning see-through furniture in the comments!
Over at Poshmark, they’re making some serious secondhand-money moves! On top of adding an entire country to their roster (welcome to Poshmark, Canada!), they’re also adding an entirely new department to their repertoire: Poshmark Home, for all of your used and secondhand housewares and decor.
Poshmark Comes to Canada!
Due to my typical American naivete, I had no idea that our Canadian friends didn’t have full access to Poshmark! Well, luckily, those days are over. Last Wednesday (5/29), Poshmark launched Poshmark Canada in beta.
Welcome to the club, Canada! You’re going to love it. And while this change doesn’t affect US customers because sales can’t cross country lines (yet?), you can certainly shop Poshmark Canada and have your goods shipped to a Canadian friend who’d be willing to forward it to you! So, in a way, this opens up an entirely new network of items to stateside Poshers.
Don’t have a friend who lives in Canada? Don’t worry! There are tons of clever companies out there whose main service is forwarding packages. Here are some of the highly rated virtual mailboxes for US shoppers:
These give you a Canadian address to ship to, then they’ll forward your order onto you, wherever you live in the US! I believe these even cover shipments from non-Canadian countries, as well. The world is your oyster!
New at Poshmark: Home
It’s not impossible to find housewares and home goods on Poshmark, but prior to last Thursday (5/30), there wasn’t a dedicated category or department for all of the hidden home gems. Now, we have an entirely new playground to buy and sell secondhand.
Currently, there are a select number of products that will be allowed in the Home section, and I assume that the list will be adjusted over time. Basically, the no-no list basically includes particularly breakable items, knives, and furniture. Basically, pain-in-the-ass stuff that should be sold locally instead of digitally.
That being said, I do wish that you could sell mugs, dishes, and tableware. That’s something I love to collect, and while it can be delicate, it’s typically pretty easy to ship with lots of good padding. Maybe Poshmark will add more categories in the future!
Here are the new Poshmark Home categories:
Candles & holders
Ornamental strings lights
Jewelry organizers & storage containers
Some of these categories are popular for DIYers and crafters which makes me wonder if this change might be bringing them a step closer to an Etsy-type marketplace. Stationery, ornaments, cards, blankets… Those are all excellent crafts that people have historically been pretty great at making. We’ll see where that goes!
Bedding is an interesting category to me, as well. If you’ve ever tried to buy new sheets for a queen size bed, chances are good that you’ve experienced the sticker shock that makes you wonder how a gigantic fabric rectangle could be $60. Plus, with the modern invention of washing machines, as long as there are no stains, I’m 100% fine with secondhand bedding.
If secondhand home items weird you out, remember that there are all types of people selling on Poshmark. Sure, there are average people like you and me trying to get some cash for our old stuff, but there are also professional Poshers out there. Some of them are wholesalers, some are brick and mortar locations selling goods online, and some are probably home stagers with warehouses full of interior design and decor items that have been used once or twice. AKA give it a chance, ok? For me?
If you haven’t signed up for Poshmark yet, I highly encourage you to give it a try. They’re a bustling, growing company, and you can really make cold hard cash by selling your old clothes! If it sweetens the deal for you, try using my referral code “LINDSAYISBROKE” when you sign up to get $10 after you make your first purchase!
Whenever we talk about cash back programs on B&B, it’s usually referencing a new or up-and-coming program to watch out for. That’s because we boldly assume that everyone in the world of online shopping tricks has already heard of Ebates, now called Rakuten.
Established over 20 years ago, EbatesRakuten has been serving up Big Fat Checks for longer than some of you have been alive. For those who haven’t yet crossed paths with the largest cash-back program on the ‘net, Rakuten is just like the rest: through direct partnerships with brands and online stores, they give you a cash back bonus based on how much you spend.
A snapshot of the current cash back bonuses available right now during their Summer Sales
Each store has its own negotiated cash back percentage, and sometime they’re as high as 15%! Usually, though, the range is from 3-8%, which is still a sweet little bonus. I like to think of it as an extra discount on my order, despite the fact that Rakuten only pays out every quarter.
If you’re wondering why I keep struggling with the name, fear not, there is a good reason! Well, sort of.
Way back in 2014, Rakuten bought up the famous and well-known Ebates for a cool billion dollars. Ever since then, they’ve been slowly transitioning into Rakuten, and in February 2019, they made the official name-switch and it’s been… mostly successful, I think! Personally, I would have kept the well-known name “Ebates,” but I’m an adaptable human who respects others choices, so I’ll keep trying to say “Rakuten.”
Using Rakuten Online
Obviously, this is the way that the vast majority of Rakuten users make their extra cash. Shopping online is so ubiquitous at this point that there’s an extremely good chance that something you already buy is available in a cash back format. But the Rakuten merchant dashboard (a phrase I just made up) is good for more than just activating your shopping cash back shopping trip.
Each merchant page will show the cash back rate alongside the activation button, that’s a given. If applicable, Rakuten will also tell you current sales, coupons, and applicable discounts that will help you on your bargain shopping way.
Once you activate your shopping trip, Rakuten will open up a new window for you to shop in so it can track how much you spend and give you appropriate monies in return. It takes about a day for them to log your shopping trip, but you’ll receive update emails after you shop, and again after you receive your rebate. Like I said, though, Rakuten pays out quarterly, so keep that in mind when getting excited about cash back emails.
Getting Cash Back In-Store
Yes, getting cash back from shopping in-store is a real thing! At the end of 2016, two years after Rakuten bought Ebates, they introduced in-store cash back or, as MoneyTalksNews likes to put it, brands began to “pay you to spend money at their brick-and-mortar locations.” What began with 30 retailers now encompasses 80 brand partners that offer between 1-5.5% cash back.
In order to get the cash back from in-store purchases, link a debit or credit card to your Rakuten account. Then, once you activate or “link” the offer to your account, just use the card on file and you’re all set.
Rakuten’s Legendary Referral Bonuses
The last and arguable easiest way to earn some extra cash through Rakuten is through referrals. The thing is.. it’s not exactly difficult to convince people to become instantly eligible for rebates on everyday purchases. The service itself is so un-invasive that the downsides are to few and far between to really acknowledge. The worst thing about Rakuten is that it’s sometimes hard to remember to activate deals. Is that their fault? Not really!
So when you mention Rakuten to your friends and family, they get $10 after their first purchase, and you get $25. It’s honestly such a generous deal, and while there’s obvious benefit to Rakuten using your address book to beef up their user database, the return is substantial enough for me to give it two very enthusiastic thumbs up.
So, uh, this seems like a good opportunity to give you my referral link give you my referral link in case you haven’t signed up yet! Remember $10 for you after your first purchase, and a potential $25 for each of your friends!
…has been great. Even after all of the other cash back and rebate programs I’ve tried, the one I keep installing into my browser is Rakuten.
Why? Because they do exactly what they say they’re going to do every time. Despite my budget shopping addiction, I don’t do a ton of online shopping. Despite that, I’ve earned almost $200 in rebates over the last couple of years. I can only imagine what someone who actually buys things for themselves could earn.
Luxury items and designer goods usually only show up in my possession if they were purchased secondhand. But a couple of times per year, my opportunity to buy brand new stuff from magazine-level designers manifests through a ridiculous sale at a high end store. With Memorial Day right around the corner, we’re in prime new-stuff territory, and we’re starting out the season of actually-affordable-designer-stuff with the Barney’s Warehouse 50% off sale.
If you’re into the idea of a summer wardrobe, this is probably the place to acquire all of the necessary accessories. Scarves are in abundance, which is semi-ironic as we enter the hottest months of the year, but you can’t deny that they’re a good sunburn prevention item when tank top season rolls around! And, of course, you need some glasses and hats to round out your “I’m not trying to get burned” fashion look.
For those who use the sunshine to motivate them in the fitness department, you’ll be all over the activewear in this sale. Really cute sports bras by Electric Yoga and Live the Process are highlights of the upper activewear department, and then the bottoms take over. There are so many workout leggings in this sale, and due to the demographic, they’re all cute AF.
Socks have historically been one of the most under-appreciated players on Team Fashion, especially when it comes to women’s fashion. Men’s fashion has been appreciating socks for so much longer than we have, but with the whole gender-based fashion thing slowly melting into the past, women everywhere are starting to bask in the glory of a stylish sock.
It’s arguable that socks are the most genuine representation of a person’s individual style, and possibly even their personality. Think about it. For one, you don’t find people in malls paying for brand-name socks for that perfect Instagram shot. The majority of a worn sock isn’t even visible! When someone buy’s a pair of cute socks, it’s usually because they instantly pass the Marie Kondo test.
But socks are becoming more visible. (And maybe I just cursed the world by introducing the idea of Instagram sock models. Sorry about that.) Style adventurers everywhere are beginning to rediscover this under-appreciated clothing element, incorporating fashion socks into their most stylish #ootds.
The best part about socks-as-fashion is that there are an infinite number of styles available, so everyone can find what they like. Ultimately, though, socks can be divided into two categories: inside socks and outside socks.
Fashionable socks: outside (Rihanna) vs. inside (Karen Cardiel)
Inside socks are barely visible to others, except maybe for a glimpse at the ankle or two. Maybe they peek out over the top of a pair of boots, or they poke out between a pair of sneakers and ankle pants, but for the most part, they’re a silent supporter.
Outside socks, on the other… foot, are actual outfit elements that are meant to compliment what you’re wearing, or maybe draw attention to a great pair of legs or heels. Or both.
Photo by Lia Clay for Teen Vogue December 2016
With higher demand for socks come more unique and creative options. Along with new and creative options come an army of fashion-lovers with little to no idea how to wear this stuff. As far as our advice goes, let’s just say this: thank goodness for the internet.
How the Internet Wears Fashion Socks
Here are some brands who are making waves in the world of fashion socks:
This is sock brand has been around for nearly 20 years, and at the helm of the operation is a true fashion industry veteran, complete with an incredibly stylish pedigree. With artistic, stocking-designing parents, Laurie Mallet was clearly destined to make Ozone into the go-to brand for unique fashion socks. They have a particularly good collection of floral socks that shouldn’t be missed, and yes, they have a Sock of the Month club.
This is a family-owned brand that saw a gap in the sock market for unique, interesting socks that were made well and affordably. The result is Yo Sox. They sent me a care package a couple of years ago and I still sock those bad boys on a regular basis (s/o to this pair of fabulous flamingo socks). The quality of these socks really is impressive, and their style options are always increasing. Their multi-design sock bundles offer a decision-free option for those who can’t pick from the vast number of styles on the website and gets the typically $12 socks down to $9/pair.
Foot Traffic started with a guy who loved socks, and has blossomed into a thriving business with roots in Kansas City, MO. Whether you’re looking for ankle socks, knee socks, no-shows or legwarmers, Foot Traffic has your back. If you’re obsessed with those veggie socks up there, they’re only $9. For sock lovers who are less discriminate, check out the sizeable clearance section for socks as low as $3 per pair.
This little Portland-based shop has been around for a long time, and definitely had a hand in my relationship with fashion. When slouchy socks and thigh highs came into style around the mid-2000s, you could hear every thick-thighed girl sigh heavily. This was long before inclusion was trendy, and Sock Dreams’ incredibly extensive size offerings were a much-needed breath of fresh air. They’ve continued on the body love war path throughout the last decade and are still thriving as an independent business built on acceptance. Oh, and the socks are hella cute, too.
No one knows how to do a seasonal blowout sale quite like Vancouver-based Mia Melon. A few times a year, they throw a inventory clear-out sale that rivals the best sample sale you could wish for. Not only that, but their outerwear offerings are as functional are they are beautiful.
Their jackets perform incredibly well under the spring and summer rains that we tend to get here in the Pacific Northwest. Best of all, the look good enough to grace your daily commute year-round. My Mia Melon jacket is two years old now, and it would easily pass as new.
But back to the sale, right? For two days only, take 45% off of new and sale items on the Mia Melon website.
Mia Melon 45% off code: FLASH45OFF
Considering that Mia Melon coats are the kind you maybe hand down to your kids someday, 45% off is going to make a big dent in the price tag. Each waterproof jacket is treated with a DWR coating that makes it virtually impervious to your local spring weather. The hoods on Mia Melon coats are also noteworthy if you love feeling like you live in a rain cocoon.
Here are some of the best deals from the Mia Melon seasonal sale:
Sometimes I wonder how sugary, carbonated beverages are still somehow thriving in the consumer marketplace. They’re not good for you, they’re expensive, and some of the flavors are just downright weird. I mean, would Dr. Pepper be a good flavor anywhere other than in a carbonated beverage? But then, on a sweltering summer day… I get it. There’s nothing that kills the heat quite like an ice-cold, fizzy bev.
Many might associate carbonated beverage popularity with the soda fountains of the 1950s, but judging from the last decade of beverage trends, it’s clear that we are the true Carbonation Generation. Pretty much every demographic has developed a strong penchant for sugar-free, carbonated or sparkling water. We love it so much, we give it pet names like “fizzy,” “bubbles,” or my personal favorite, seasonally relevant moniker, “mom water.”
But it turns out that even affordable things become expensive when you buy them all the time! If you find yourself buying case after case of sparkling water, it might be time to look into a SodaStream.
Which SodaStream is the Best SodaStream?
Here are your three main SodaStream sparkling water options:
Sodastream Fizzi Classic ($90): No batteries, no cords. Just you, a bottle, and a pressurized canister of CO2. Just push a button on top 2-5 times (depending on your preferred level of carbonation) and you’re done!
Sodastream One-Touch Electric ($120): This version has three buttons on the top that are preset to specific amounts of infusion. Basically, a low, medium, and high for carbonation. This one plugs into the wall so it’s always ready. It’s just a single button-push between you and fizzy water.
Sodastream Fizz Premium ($160): For the glamorous, highly conscious, and financially gifted, there’s the Premium. This version carbonates water directly into glass bottles that don’t need to be replaced every year or so like their plastic counterparts. Like the Fizzi, it doesn’t require electricity, but you pay a much prettier penny for the materials involved.
My favorite of the bunch is undoubtedly the Fizzi Classic. I got one of these for Christmas in 2017 (thanks, Milo!), but didn’t fully appreciate it until early 2019.
Reasons I like the Fizzi Classic over the other models include:
No electricity required
Extremely lightweight & easy to store
Simple mechanical construction makes any necessary troubleshooting 100x easier than an electric model
You can bring it and use it pretty much anywhere (camping, hotels rooms, porch parties, etc.)
So far, I have used it to replicate the lime-“flavored” fizzy water I used to buy in stores, but I’ve also used it to save my ass when making gin & tonics without tonic in the house, created some pretty delicious fruit syups to add to plain water, and saved myself hundreds (if not thousands) of dollars in random beverage purchases.
The original title of this review was “Completely Unsponsored, Highly Enthusiastic SodaStream Fizzi Review.” Not only is this thing the cure to running out of La Croix, but it’s also a way more sustainable way to navigate your sparkling water addiction. Sure, you can recycle cans of sparkling water, but with the SodaStream, you reuse the same containers over and over. And that carbonation canister? It’s recyclable.
Here’s the fun part. Let’s pretend that you, a moderate and reasonable person, only have one fizzy water per day. (Lol.) That’s 12 fluid ounces of carbonated smelly water every 24 hours. Let’s see how SodaStream measures up against its pre-packaged, recyclable-yet-environmentally-expensive, store-bought counterpart.
Store-Bought Canned Sparkling Water Value Breakdown
Includes: 8.5 L of fizzy water, or 288 fl. oz.
Days with fizzy water: 24
Monthly fizzy water budget: $11.23
Yearly fizzy water budget: $134.85 Cost per fluid ounce: $0.03
Total investment: $134.85/year for one sparkling water per day.
Not too shabby, right? For only $11.23/month, you can have a delicious beverage that isn’t flat water every single day. Seems reasonable, right?
Well, while this might seem like a pretty low number, you have to remember that this is just the consumer cost of your moderate pre-packaged fizzy water habit. The environmental impact of the canned stuff also includes the manufacturing of the cans and packaging, the fuel and emissions from transportation, and the cost to recycle the leftovers – and that’s assuming it’s getting recycled.
$8.99 for a 24 pack is the best price we found for the most popular brand. Chances are good that you’d be able to find something a little less expensive from a different brand, but none of that stuff will matter after this next part so just keep reading.
SodaStream Value Breakdown
SodaStream Fizzi MegaKit (includes CO2 cartridge & two bottles): $75 at Amazon
1 CO2 canister: $15 with returned canister exchange
Makes: 60 L of fizzy water, or 2,028 fl. oz.
Days with fizzy water: 169
Yearly fizzy water budget: $90 (including initial purchase)
Yearly fizzy water budget: $30 (not including initial purchase) Cost per fluid ounce (including initial purchase): $0.02 Cost per fluid ounce (after first cartridge refill): $0.0034
Total investment: $75 initially, and $15 every 6 months (okay, 5.63) months
I used the lowest price I could find online for the pre-packaged fizzy water, and the SodaStream still came through with a lower overall cost for the first year. And, I don’t wanna make you feel bad, canned fizzy lovers, but if we go into the second year of SodaStream ownership… well, it gets a little bit ridiculous. After owning a SodaStream for the first year, your annual fizzy water costs is only $32.41.
On top of that, all of the can-related issues we faced earlier are nearly eliminated. There’s only one big shipment involved, and since the CO2 canisters are recyclable (or refillable, whichever works for you) the carbon footprint is way, way smaller.
How to Get SodaStream Fizzi & Which Package is Best
When you go to buy a SodaStream, it can get kinda confusing kinda fast. You can buy the SodaStream Fizzi machine by itself for $60, there’s always some kind of bundle. Then, depending on whether you’re shopping with SodaStream directly, on Amazon, or at one of the many retailers who carry the product, the bundle content will vary.
The bundles include at least one proprietary bottle, a CO2 cartridge, and maybe some flavors or a warranty. Here are the SodaStream Fizzi Classic bundles we’ve found, and the price differences between them:
I should also mention that these cuties comes in a variety of different colors, including baby blue, white, and fire engine red.
Adding in Flavors or… Ideas of Flavors
We all know that sparkling water never really has a flavor. Even if the can or bottle is covered in fruit, it tastes as much like fruit as the water used to rinse actual fruit tastes like fruit. As in… it doesn’t. In fact, people have made an art form out of mocking sparkling water “flavors” and you’d be wise to spend at least part of your day reading the insanely hilarious ways people have described the flavor of sparkling water.
SodaStream has its own line of water flavor drops, and they come in all of your favorite sparkling water flavors like lime, lemon, orange, and raspberry. You can get all five for $25 on Amazon, but there are some DIY options that are worth looking into.
Important note about flavorings: you always add the flavors after you carbonate! Some of the SodaStream branded flavors will cause a major eruption if added before you carbonate. Trust me, I’ve been there! You can also pour flavors or syrups in the bottom of a glass, then top it with carbonated water with the exact same effects (and less potential mess).
Making your own syrups for sodas is pretty darn easy. Using sugar is a good way to make syrups incredibly simply (I guess that’s why they call it “simple syrup”), but making sugar-free and low-sugar flavors isn’t off the table, either!
There is one flavor additive that I would unconditionally recommend getting for your SodaStream if you love the idea of custom cocktails. In order to make tonic water, you need some pretty specialized flavors. Luckily, you can get a tiny bottle of concentrated tonic water flavor for $6 and make it on the fly! Making club soda at home is a tiny bit more involved, but wholly worth it if you hate running out of common mixers!
Last Ditch Effort
Okay, I’m not going to harp on you about the amazing abilities of SodaStream after this paragraph, but you gotta let me gush one last time.
If you’ve been on the fence about picking up a SodaStream Fizzi Classic, or one of the other models – definitely consider it.
Basically, SodaStream rings a lot of bells for me. For one, it makes me feel better about my intentions to minimize my carbon footprint and be as low-waste as possible. Two, it taps my creative side when coming up with cocktails and mixers. Three, it’s not soda, and that means I’m drinking actual water instead of mucky, sugar-filled or aspartame-laced sodas. And four… it’s just fun. It’s fun to show it off to friends, it’s fun to make drinks for yourself, and it’s honestly fun to watch the infusion process. (Bubbles!!!)
Do you have a SodaStream? If so, which one?
Tell us your favorite tips, tricks, and SodaStream recipes in the comments!
If you haven’t checked in with The Body Shop in a few years, prepare yourself before continuing because they’ve only gotten better with age. As one of the trendiest brands of the 1990s (thanks, coconut body butter!), they’ve used their momentum to keep up with the insane speed of the beauty industry.
But they’re not immune to change, either! Their packaging has received a sleek, 21st century upgrade, and there are some new members of the family. The Body Shop has also spent their time getting their business right in the eyes of the environment. A quick glance over their Enrich Not Exploit sustainability targets will fill your heart with actual, genuine hope.
3 target goals (out of 20) set by The Body Shop that make us swoon:
Invest 250,000 hours of skills and know-how to enrich the biodiversity of local communities.
Publish use of ingredients of natural origin, ingredients from green chemistry, and biodegradability and water footprint of products.
Build Bio-Bridges, protecting and regenerating 75 million square meters of habitat helping communities to live more sustainably
So maybe it’s time to dive back in to The Body Shop. After all, the 90s are trendy for all eternity, right? Well, here’s your chance.
“I hope your day is full of tadpoles, and showers, and rainbows and rain. And pollywogs, and puddles, and, uh, sunshine and umbrellas, and warming weather, and lambs… Is ‘lambs’ the plural of ‘lamb?’ Yeah. And daffodils and chicks, and wildflowers and butterflies, and… births? And baby animals, and blossoms, and bulbs, and bunnies and breezes and – guys! The spring theme! You get it.”
The intro of Sara Weinshenk‘s semi-eponymous podcast, Shenk, begins with a series of guest-inspired wishes and affirmations for your day. Some days, the well-wishes include trapeze artists, cotton candy, and crystal balls and others are filled with sandcastles, soft serve, and bikinis. Either way, Sara wants you to have a good, highly-themed day, and an episode of her podcast is a great way to start it off.
Shenk is a fashion podcast that is also kind of about everything. Sara is an awesome interviewer who uses her deep California comedy roots to bring hilarious and talented colleagues to her podcast. While her guests are typically successful and interesting, Sara, herself, is a complex and charming creature. As a born and bred Valley Girl (a title she wears with pride), her demeanor is unique to the west coast, and what would a west coast lifestyle be without a healthy dose of cannabis?
She’s a rising podcast star and a tried-and-true influencer for all things ganja (shout outs to Kush Queen and Smoked Honey). In the pageantry of our modern, weed-loving world, Sara Weinshenk is the unanimous queen. Best of all, her Valley Girl coolness keeps her passion for cannabis from being obnoxious, or even stereotypical. As far as California girls go, she’s as good as they get: ambitious, stoned, and clever as hell.
No matter what day it is, Sara and her Shenk guest promise a ton of laughs. Sara is a killer in the comedy scene, and a style icon in the world of weed (and probably everywhere else). When she’s not recognized for being a talented, young, stand-up comic whose career has spanned almost a full decade, she’s being recognized for her entirely original and disgustingly good sense of style. Like if Wednesday Addams became a technicolor dandy.
You can often find her donning some sort of neck tie – be it a high’n’tight bowtie, or a 70s style pussy bow. Her eye for vintage is incredibly keen, and her closet is clearly full of once-in-a-lifetime second-hand fashion finds. In a twisted, stylishly dystopian future where the only currency is western-style blouses and loud prints, Sara Weinshenk will become our unequivocal leader.
During each episode of Shenk, Sara encourages listeners to send her their most puzzling fashion quandaries – complete with photos, please! If you want to know if you can wear certain colors together, pair checkers with houndstooth, or just figure out if a vintage find is worth it or not, she’s your girl.
After the necessary introductions, podcast formalities, and thematic well-wishes, Shenk‘s guests are inevitably polled about their own fashion history. All of the best embarrassing fashion phases rear their dated and ugly heads, and it’s great. Sara doesn’t excuse herself from the table when it’s her turn, either. She’s proudly relived her Very Californian style trials in the early 2000s, all of which are as endearing as they are cringe-worthy. After all, if you can’t bond over horrific fashion choices, then what is there?
Some of our favorite Shenk episodes include:
Baggy Clothes, Art & Antler Horns with Jessimae Peluso
Ebikes, A Leather Hat & Anxiety with Joe De Rosa
Flipping Vintage, Baby-G Watches & Button Ups/Downs with Bree Essrig
818, Apple Cider Vinegar & Sperry Topsiders with Brody Stevens
The reasons we love Sara and Shenk are numerous, but at the forefront is the constant reminder that style is an eternally evolving, incredibly fun, and not-too-serious way to infuse your outsides with your insides, so to speak. A lot of the guests Sara interviews are her friends, but many of them aren’t necessarily the types to delve into the deep meanings behind their Hot Topic jewelry fascination, or the symbolism of a visible thong. Hearing people revisit their most potentially humiliating style choices can be as hilarious as it is insightful, and walking that road alongside someone who is funny for a living usually results in and excellent time for us listeners.
As far as podcasts go, Shenk is providing an excellent mix of fashion nostalgia, cannabis culture, thoughtful interview, and hilarious small talk. It’s an excellent choice for a sunny day when you’re stuck in traffic, something to listen to while you chip off and then repaint your nails, and of course, the perfect accompaniment for a soak in a CBD-infused bath.
If you’re a Shenk listener already, leave a comment with your favorite epsiode. If you’re not yet a Shenk listener, you’re officially obligated to share your most hilarious fashion phase with us! Shoot us a tweet or admit your shame in our own personal Discord.
It’s been a good couple of years for the budget skincare lovers of the world. Beauty brands have been passionately wooing us to spend our money on their products, and they want poor people’s money more than aaaanyone else’s. So, lucky for us, we have a lot of great, affordable skincare brands popping up all over the place. The latest, as of August 2018, is Colourpop’s sister brand, Fourth Ray Beauty.
Having launched less than six months ago, it’s impressive that Fourth Ray has already amassed almost 50 products to choose from. A few of those products are sets or kits, but there are dozens of individual facial cleansers, oil, serums, and creams for you to play with.
Despite the brand’s infancy, people are already raving in measurable patterns about Fourth Ray Beauty’s best products. From the reviews and comments I’ve read, the ultimate favorite Fourth Ray product is the Cloud Bank Milky Cleanser ($12). It’s an opaque, thin facial cleanser that contains soothing ingredients like rose water and Argan milk that are gentle on skin while thoroughly cleansing. Other common favorites include the facial mists, moisturizers, and the BFD Oil Cleanser ($14), which happens to come in a set with the Cloud Bank Milky Cleanser for only $26 – currently on sale for $22. People love the way the oil emulsifies into a soft cleanser, and the smell is a favorite among shoppers, as well!
There are also a few products that people have repeatedly cited as their least favorite. Number one on that list: AM to the PM Gel Cleanser ($12). Folks have said that the formula can be overly drying, especially for naturally dry skin types.
But not every purchase can be based on a slew of credible, eloquent reviews. Instead, we are gonna just scroll through the Fourth Ray products until we see something we would like to someday unbox, set next to our other skincare products, and perhaps even use someday.
True to Colourpop family legacy, Fourth Ray loves to latch on to a good trend. They’ve got a ton of products to choose from already, and new releases aren’t exactly few or far between. While they have your standard cleansers, moisturizers, and face masks, they also have very buzzed-up items like skin milks, facial oils, and those weird crystal face rollers. (Do they work? IDK. I’m inclined to believe that they just make you feel extra fancy.)
One of the most appealing aspects of this new brand is the fact that everything is vegan and cruelty-free. They also pay attention to their environmental impact, and include recyclable packaging, glass bottles, and plastic that is recyclable in many regions.
As for whether or not you should take the plunge – well, it seems like most would say it’s worth a shot. Not only is the price right, but many have touted the ingredients in Fourth Ray’s products and I see frequent comparisons to higher end products. Someone on Reddit even compared Fourth Ray’s The Lightweight moisturizer ($12) to Tatcha’s famous(ly expensive) Water Cream. If they’re even remotely similar, that means you could be getting the goodness of a $68 product for less than 20% of the price. If that claim holds water, sign me the eff up, please!
For further reading on Fourth Ray (i.e. everything I’ve been diving through to see if there’s any real dirt on this new, affordable skincare brand), here are some great resources:
Of course, there are hundreds of reviews already posted to the Colourpop and Fourth Ray websites, but I’m never sure about who deletes negative reviews and who doesn’t, so I rely on external reviews more than anything!
Have you tried Fourth Ray Beauty? What did you think?