Bluesy Metallic Friday

WEARING: s a k u NEW YORK METALLIC KNIT TOP | AMERICAN EAGLE WHITE JEANS | 
EGO TEGAN POINTED TOE | FOREVER 21 CREAM PATENT CLUTCH BAG | GALTISCOPIO JOLI CRYSTAL
 RING | H&M BLACK FEATHER POLKA DOT FEATHERED HOOP EARRING

THIS POST IS BROUGHT TO YOU BY s a k u New York.

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Lately, I've been feeling like I am failing in so many 'sections' of my life, I can't keep track. It leads to discouragement and therefore I'm harder on myself than I usually am. But it's also the fuel to the fire to not give up and to keep working toward what I want. What makes these cross paths in life easier to navigate? And how do you know when something is right? And even more so, how do you know when it's wrong? Regarding work and personal relationships, I am currently having major conflicts with time and effort. Trying to find the balance is quite difficult, even straight down to missing my best friend's wedding. And to make days of feeling pretty lousy worse, it just seems like so many people I know are getting those promotions, getting married, having babies, etc; and as much as I am happy for them - it's sometimes hard not to reflect on my own self. Am I doing the right thing? Am I making good decisions? Are they worth it? Are you worth it?  Maybe I should focus more on settling down and starting a family. But life takes you in so many directions and as my father always used to say, "If you want to make God laugh, just tell him your plans."

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You know, I've changed careers three times before really figuring myself out. From the criminal justice world to the figure skating world, to now the fashion blogging world, each transition scared the bejesus out of me. I've always firmly believed you should do one thing that scares you each and every day. And this can mean completely different things for everybody but challenge yourself. Not happy with something? Make that change. Get it done. Stop dreaming and start doing. Take a leap of faith. And even though each time I took a different route on that crazy path to self-discovery, as much as every time I would, of course, think over my choices, there was still something deep down in my gut that knew I was reaching closer to something. Like the truth.

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Now, how do you know when something isn't right? If it's broke and unfixable, and/or you are asking yourself if you've reached the end of whatever it may be, maybe a career choice/job or any kind of relationship, those are pretty obvious signs to me. Though, I think that if you've applied a lot of diligent effort to something or someone and the results are still same and you're still unhappy, that's the bottom line for me. The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, but expecting different results, as Einstein used to say. But the bottom line is far away from where you draw the middle line. Because not everything is in black and white, right? The most complicated areas are always foggy and grey. 

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My instincts do say I'm on the right track. But I sometimes forget that it's not the destination that really matters, but the journey. Maybe that's why I feel like a failure lately. My impatience has a tendency to get the best of me. *Flaw alert* Whatever path you take in life will deeply be affected by your experiences and more especially, the choices you make from them. Because when it comes down to it, we ALL have a choice. In everything we do. So, I think that if you choose to stay in a certain mindset, either negative or positive, it really makes a difference in everyday living. Sure, I have those days too where the bully voice defeats me, I don't feel good enough for anyone or anybody, and I just want to be left alone. But I try very hard every day to wake up with a positive attitude, and I feel when I do, the rest of my day is rather positive too. How do you guys differentiate between what feels right and what feels wrong? Do you think that some people tend to gravitate towards one or the other for certain reasons? And how do you deal with those bluesy days like I've mentioned? Retail therapy? Writing? Gabbing on the phone with your girlfriend? Bad emotional eating habits? What helps you get you through it? 

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October Beauty Favorites

BEAUTY FAVORITES: LANCÔME DUAL FINISH MULTI-TASKING ILLUMINATING HIGHLIGHTER 
IN RADIANT ROSE GOLD | DIOR HYDRA LIFE FRESH HYDRATION 
SORBET CREME | DIOR 'DIORSHOW' BROW STYLER IN 
UNIVERSAL DARK BROWN | KIEHL'S POWERFUL STRENGTH LINE-REDUCING CONCENTRATE | 
LANCÔME DRAMA LIQUI-PENCIL™ LONGWEAR EYELINER IN PARISIAN NIGHT | 
LANCÔME TRANSLUCENCE SILKY LOOSE POWDER IN 200 | ST. IVES® FRESH SKIN APRICOT SCRUB |
 YSL BEAUTY ROUGE VOLUPTE IN SMOKING PLUM | SAY HELLO TO SEXY LEGS GLOW BUTTER 

THIS POST IS SPONSORED BY DIOR, LANCÔME & SAY HELLO TO SEXY LEGS

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Running a little late on our regular Wednesday post but I've been running around all day from back-to-back meetings, editing and then some. I've got a lot of exciting content coming your way, I cannot wait to share! Since I have a lot going on this month (redeveloping a website for a client on top of everything else) I decided to release my monthly beauty favorites a little bit earlier here in October. But if you're a beauty fanatic like myself, you'll definitely want to check this post out! I've got a ton of Lancôme and Dior goodies along with other new discoveries as well as an oldie fall favorite that's my all-time favorite vampy lip color! Did I mention it's mango-scented? Yum! And I think I've found the perfect match when it comes to a brow filler. Continue to read more about my beauty product reviews this month down below!

1. LANCÔME DUAL FINISH MULTI-TASKING ILLUMINATING HIGHLIGHTER IN RADIANT ROSE GOLD

A dual-effect powder highlighter enhanced with light-reflecting pearls for a smooth, buildable glow, it is available in illuminating shades for all skin tones. This ultra-creamy powder highlighter melts into the skin for a brilliant highlight that doesn't cake. Its wet-dry technology allows for customized highlight and the ultimate versatility: use it dry for a subtle glow, or apply damp for a more intense result. The formula is infused with light-enhancing pearls to achieve that beautiful pearly glow. It's also infused with vitamin E and triglycerides for a non-drying formula that wears comfortably all day long. The lightweight texture applies smoothly and evenly for a second-skin feel, whether using a brush, sponge, or your fingers. Just wear it dry for a subtle highlight, or apply damp for more intense illumination. Ya know, that extra 'glow' achieved without really trying-look? ;)

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2. DIOR HYDRA LIFE FRESH HYDRATION SORBET CREME

Which skin type is it good for? Normal Oily Combination. An ultra-fresh gel-creme that nurtures and invigorates the skin, it has left my skin looking and feeling moisturized, radiant, and plumped.  This ultra-fresh hydrating moisturizer is infused with natural ingredients, including French mallow flower and haberlea leaf to nurture the skin, support its natural moisturizing ability, and reinforce balance. The sorbet creme-gel texture offers a breathtaking refreshing effect, invigorating skin with long-lasting hydration. I use it every morning and night, but even sometimes just use this one its own when I'm having a makeup-free day. And I simply love its subtle scent!

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3. DIOR 'DIORSHOW' BROW STYLER

Expert precision for a tailor-made result, Diorshow Brow Styler by Dior redefines, reshapes and fills out the eyebrow, offering high-definition makeup with a graphic yet natural result. Its single shade, Universal Brown, is adapted to work with all eyebrows. It features a retractable tip on one side for an ultra-precise line and a brush on the other side for easy blending. It's been my go-to brow filler nowadays - how chic is the packaging by the way?

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4. KIEHL'S POWERFUL STRENGTH LINE-REDUCING CONCENTRATE

A personal favorite of mine since last winter when I first started using the concentrate, it is clinically-demonstrated to improve overall skin texture, tone and radiance while reducing the appearance of lines and wrinkles. It also provides anti-oxidant protection and exfoliates skin to reveal healthier-looking skin. I solely apply it only my forehead and right in between my eyebrows where I have a small line formed from squinting too much ha ha! I know some of you might say I don't need to be using this product at the moment, but I like to think of it as a preventative from further wrinkles!

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5. LANCÔME DRAMA LIQUI-PENCIL™ LONGWEAR EYELINER IN PARISIAN NIGHT

This eyeliner creates a smoky effect by smudging afterward immediately. An extreme, long-wear, high-intensity color liquid-pencil eyeliner. This eyeliner has the high-intensity color of a liquid liner and the ease of application of a pencil. Glide on smooth color while giving eyes maximum color intensity and all-day wear. Featuring a creamy, instantly blendable formula, it sets quickly for 24-hour wear without budging or fading. Definitely worth your extra dollar for this high-quality eyeliner!

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6. LANCÔME TRANSLUCENCE SILKY LOOSE POWDER IN 200

What it is: A loose powder that sets and perfects your makeup. What it does: It features a perfectly blended, innovative powder that absorbs oil and smoothes skin with a translucent matte finish and sumptuous satin touch. It lasts all day, giving coverage that is even and flawless and never chalky. How to use: Wear it alone or over your makeup. Touch-up throughout the day as needed. There's no need to worry about build-up either, but I use it over my makeup mostly to 'bake' in the rest. 

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7. ST. IVES® FRESH SKIN APRICOT SCRUB 

St. Ives Fresh Skin Apricot Scrub is the Swiss secrets for smooth, radiant skin. It captures these secrets in this cleansing formula with 100% natural exfoliants that gently remove dull, dead skin cells to instantly reveal smooth, radiant skin. And the apricot fragrance is intoxicating. 

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8. YSL BEAUTY ROUGE VOLUPTE

My all-time favorite vampy lip color for fall, this Yves Saint Laurent lipstick has arevolutionary texture that provides luscious color and luminous shine while actually conditioning lips. It's made with 65% oils, the deeply hydrating texture instantly melts into lips providing a pop of color, instant hydration, and all-day comfort. After 4 weeks, lips look healthy and more nourished. 6 oils for 6 benefits: hydration, high shine, comfort, ultra-melting, luminosity, and smoothness. With the addicting signature YSL mango scent, these lipsticks are good enough to eat. 

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9. SAY HELLO TO SEXY LEGS GLOW BUTTER

Designed to deliver an instant natural-looking glow and luminous finish, Glow Butter moisturizes while helping to blur imperfections and even the look of skin texture. Extra-fine, rose gold light-reflecting particles give a long-lasting radiant afterglow. Formulated with shea butter, caffeine, and green tea, the butter texture does not feel greasy and is quickly absorbed. It suits all skin tones, and works wonders on arms, neck, and decollete.

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Houndstooth & Charles Bukowski

WEARING: VINTAGE MACKINTOSH OVERSIZED HOUNDSTOOTH JACKET |
FOREVER 21 OVERSIZED CUTOUT SHIRT | LEVI'S 711 ALTERED SKINNY JEANS |
EGO NASH BACKLESS ANKLE BOOTS | CHARLES BUKOWSKI WOMEN 


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I WAS SENTIMENTAL ABOUT MANY THINGS: A WOMAN'S SHOES UNDER THE BED; ONE HAIRPIN LEFT BEHIND ON THE DRESSER; THE WAY THEY SAID, "I'M GOING TO PEE. . ."; HAIR RIBBONS, WALKING DOWN THE BOULEVARD WITH THEM AT 1:30 IN THE AFTERNOON, JUST TWO PEOPLE WALKING TOGETHER; THE LONG NIGHTS OF DRINKING AND SMOKING, TALKING; THE ARGUMENTS; THINKING OF SUICIDE; EATING TOGETHER AND FEELING GOOD; THE JOKES; THE LAUGHTER OUT OF NOWHERE; FEELING MIRACLES IN THE AIR; BEING IN A PARKED CAR TOGETHER; COMPARING PAST LOVERS AT 3AM; BEING TOLD YOU SNORE, HEARING HER SNORE; MOTHERS, DAUGHTERS, SONS, CATS, DOGS; SOMETIMES DEATH AND SOMETIMES DIVORCE, BUT ALWAYS CARRYING ON, ALWAYS SEEING IT THROUGH; READING A NEWSPAPER ALONE IN A SANDWICH JOINT AND FEELING NAUSEA BECAUSE SHE'S NOW MARRIED TO A DENTIST WITH AN I.Q. OF 95; RACETRACKS, PARKS, PARK PICNICS; EVEN JAILS; HER DULL FRIENDS, YOUR DULL FRIENDS; YOUR DRINKING, HER DANCING; YOUR FLIRTING, HER FLIRTING; HER PILLS, YOUR FUCKING ON THE SIDE, AND HER DOING THE SAME; SLEEPING TOGETHER. . . . 

One of the many passages from writer Charles Bukowski's novel, Women, I always found comfort in his writing. His style flairs in the rawest form of honesty, something that most writers today do not have. The older I become the more I realize how important it is to pull away from the idea of what perfection is supposed to be - straight to its core in every aspect. Bukowski wasn't exactly the nicest of people; a total misogynist, narcissist and straight up alcoholic. Many disliked him, but many like myself saw him as an influence not just in the realm of writing. So in today's post I'm sharing with you five things I've learned from one of my favorite American writers.

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HONESTY 

Writers have so many things they can’t write about: family, spouses, exes, children, jobs, bosses, colleagues, friends. That’s why they make stuff up. Fiction is their best friend. But Bukowski didn’t let himself get hampered by that so we see real brutal honesty, a real anthropological survey of being down and out for 60+ years without anything being held back. No other writer before or since has done that. For a particular example, see his novel, Women which detailed every sexual nuance of every woman who dared to sleep with him after he achieved some success. Most of these women were horrified after the book came out. It's actually one of my favorite books written by Bukowski and the beginning excerpt of this post is from Women. Sure he talks badly about most of the experiences he has had with women, but what I really love about it is the cold hard dose of reality that comes with any relationship: disappointment, pain, heartache... love... and the way he is so candor about some of the more intimate parts of life. Think about it, would you find it easy or rather difficult talking about your personal relationships through the written word? 

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DISCIPLINE

Imagine coming home from an awful day at work and arguing with a woman/man that was living with you, finishing off a six-pack of beer and then... writing. He did it every day. Most people want to write that novel, or finish that painting, or start that business, but have zero discipline to actually sit down and do it. I'm actually amazed he had any sort of discipline at all. With that kind of work ethic, it just goes to show that if you truly love what you're doing, it will supersede the rest. (Even through the potent powers of alcohol!) In order to be a writer, you must really love to write and you must write every single day. Easy to say, but so tough to do. I, myself, also write every day, but I'm not going to lie, there are some pretty bad days where I just want to throw my typewriter out the window. But you keep at it, because it's all you know, it's all you have and without the written word, you feel like you could die. That's how Bukowski felt too.

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SHAMELESSNESS

Bukowski didn't give a rat's ass what people thought about him. And I praise him for that. I'm constantly looking over my shoulder and am always second-guessing myself. I sometimes wish I could throw caution to the wind and really have that mentality of 'no f*cks given' at all times. But when feeling extra down, my insecurities tend to get the best of me. Learning the art of not caring what people think takes time and experience, I think. But I've always admired those who really didn't worry about the opinions of others - because it's not as easy as it looks. It can be cleverly hidden in so many different ways.

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POETRY

Bukowski was quite the poet. And it's all non-fiction, which to me, is the best part. It's not the puzzle-kind of poetry where you have to intellectually decode it to understand it. His work was straight to the point. Poetry was something that let writers to master making each word in a sentence effective and powerful. It was this training that allowed them to destroy the competition when they sat down to write their longer pieces. That's how I also got started in writing. In fact, the first two pieces I ever had published were actually poems I wrote as a young teenager. It was only after these publications that I really started to consider becoming a writer. 

PERSISTENCE

The man wrote his first novel at age 49. And it took him over 25 years to become a successful writer. Everyone (mostly everyone) nowadays wants instant gratification. Less and less are understanding what it takes to become one of the greats. I find that when most figure out how long or how much dedication/work will be required to reach whatever goal you may have, most tend to give up before even reaching that halfway mark. And Bukowski was far from perfect and yet still managed to become what he wanted to become. So if he could stay persistent despite all the misfortunes and misgivings life can bring, he still kept plugging away and never gave up. And to me, that's what makes the heart of any champion... 

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Our First Q&A Episode

WEARING: AGNES B GREY FRONT BUTTON SHIRT | PERSOL GLASSES

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Hey guys! Welcome back to my blog! And to new visitors... welcome and stick around because you're in for a treat today! Since I've started my blog which was roughly two years ago, I get asked a lot of questions about my dog and what life is like in a big city with him. Whether it's in person or on social media, everyone adores my German shepherd, McQueen... or, what most of you guys know him as: MaQ! There were so many questions to narrow it down to due to time constraint and the desire for wanting to keep a few precious moments private such as when and where we met him, why and how. And even though I like to keep that sort of balance within my personal life, I still wanted to share a few fun facts about my partner in crime. So let's take a look, shall we? 

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HOW DID HE GET HIS NAME? 

McQueen was named after the devastatingly handsome actor, Steve McQueen. Both carry such a look and are equally charismatic, Steve and I even share the same birthday, so it was only natural to give him such a unique name. We call him 'MaQ' for short because of coined phrases like, "Big Mac" and "Mack Daddy". He is quite big and a total ladies man. :)

HOW OLD IS MAQ?

5. In human years, he's technically 35 but still acts like a kid. Young at heart, I suppose. ❤️

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FAVORITES?

He just loves to play. If he could have it his way, he'd run me around all day! He's a total ball hog like many GSDs I know, but his favorite game is the toy game, or "identification" game where he can search and find whatever stuffed animal I ask him to go get, and he's got a lot of 'em. I am thinking about doing a video on this because it's just too cute and you'd be impressed with how smart he is on top of how many toys he's spoiled with! 

He also love to eat and share food with us. Yes, I'm guilty as charged and am totally that paw-rent who indulges in feeding her pooch table scraps. I can't help it! I don't want him to feel left out, ha ha! I of course only share with him what's healthy and reasonable. But every once in a while you just gotta go for the carbs. We love to share french fries together and his favorite is pizza crust. I love it too but since having MaQ, I give all my crust to him as if it's some kind of ritual between us.  

He is never without his "security blanket", or rather, his "Natty" girl. It's a plush stuffed animal monkey and I named her after Natalie Wood, who was one of Steve McQueen's ladies back in the day and they were quite the couple! You should see her in the video from this post, Natty was the size of MaQ when I first got him! 

DISLIKES?

Cats. Baths. And the rain. 

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DOES MAQ HAVE A GIRLFRIEND?

If you looked this good, would you be with only only person? Ha ha ha! He is a total player! You should see him picking up chicks on our walks... both human and canine! He's got a thing for blonds and leggy women. Hey, can ya blame him? 

DOES MAQ SLEEP WITH YOU IN BED AT NIGHT?

Honestly? No, he and I like to have our own space. I'm the type that likes to cuddle for about 3 minutes and then I'm good. He's the same, ha ha! What he tends to do most at night is keep watch. He's a good ole' boy and protects the house. 

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That's it for now! Be sure to come back and see more upcoming Q&A's! Don't forget to watch our episode on YouTube down below and if you have a question you'd like answered about us, leave it in the comment box or find me on social media! Follow me and MaQ on Instagram! Have a great weekend, everyone. We'll see ya back here on Monday! 

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OUR FIRST Q&A EPISODE!

Happy Friday, guys! Today's video is our very first Q&A with my partner in crime, my German shepherd dog, McQueen (AKA: MaQ)! After receiving a lot of questions about us from our readers, I thought it was finally time to do a sit down and answer some of them! Click to watch!

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To Market to Market

WEARING: ROSEGAL MESH PANEL HIGH WAIST BLUE JUMPSUIT | GUESS SATIN PUMPS | 
ZAFUL TASSEL LAYERED DROP EARRINGS | THE LUXELLE SILVER PLATED CLUTCH

THIS POST IS BROUGHT TO YOU BY ROSEGAL & ZAFUL.

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When one runs to the grocery store, I think the last thing we're thinking about is the way we are dressed. Now who's to say what can one wear to and from the market? It should be fair game, no? But in reality, most of us are running in and out in our everyday getups - maybe even slipping in with our pjs every now and then, especially on a late night run. This is why I love fashion styling. You don't have to work with the rules of only reality. You can set greater expectations and create stories you wouldn't be able to otherwise without the garments, accessories and everything else in between when gathering a look into a concept. And with my new passion in video (as much as I piss and moan about the process of editing - because yes, it really is a pain) lately, I'm really into creating these teeny tidbits of short film all wrapped up within a minute and incorporating the video with photographs. Come check out this decadent late night run to the market, something I'd totally be doing after show at the Met Opera + dinner... I like having dessert at home. 

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How crazy luxurious-looking is this blue jumpsuit?! And the more insane part is that it's from Rosegal and it's less than $23! Sadly it's currently sold out! I just checked this morning as I was getting ready for publish this post. But there's other colors like black and red which are also perfect for the fall season! I love a good jumpsuit for date night - like I mentioned earlier this is something I'd wear to the opera or ballet, maybe even a special event of some kind, but it's definitely more on the dressy side for me and I love how confident I feel in it! My silver plated clutch is from The Luxelle, and I love how the bag fancies up the look. 

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I wore my favorite black pumps. They are from Guess and made of satin with a real sense of comfort. I've had them for years and I still wear them to this day. They can be worn with a pair of jeans or on the dressier side, like in this outfit. To keep the look playful and fun, I chose these multi-colored, layered tassel drop earrings from Zaful. The blues work well with the jumpsuit I feel. Lastly, I also wanted to show some of my favorite upcoming trends in hair & makeup that I saw during Fashion Month and two trends I've really loved are bright, colorful makeup and sleek hair. I did these looks myself - what's funny is these two things are quite familiar to me from back to my skating days. We did big, in your face, makeup, and perfect hair buns without a strand of hair out of place. I'm all for blue eyeshadow and light pink lips lately, it just gives your face that extra pop. What do you guys think of this whole look?

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I'm always trying to elevate my creative work - it's not about competing with others. I never have and never will. I'm only in competition with myself and if I don't feel like I'm learning something everyday and getting better with my work, I feel really lost and frustrated. So creating these 'short films' as I call them at the moment, do mean a lot to me and I wouldn't do them if they didn't because a lot of time and energy goes into them. That's how I am with people too, but that's for another time over coffee. Ha ha! Anyhow, would you like to see more conceptualized stories such as this on the blog? I'd love to hear your thoughts so don't forget to drop a comment before you go! Thanks for stopping - follow me on Instagram and YouTube for the latest! See you guys soon. :) 

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To market to market, it's never about competing with others but only with yourself. So I'm trying to bring you guys a new editorial every week, with a different concept in tune with fashion, style, and short film. And all in less than a minute.

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