Unstyled : Kansas City Style Blogger

Unstyled : 005 | Photographer’s Uniform

Unstyled : Kansas City Style Blogger

The busy photography season is finally winding down around here, after a few weeks of all out insanity! I must admit, when other photographers would talk about the “busy season,” I used to be a little skeptical. I mean, how bad could it be, right? Well, it was (joke absolutely intended) BANANAS! With the weather cooling down, I found myself doing photo sessions several evenings a week, and after a couple, I realized I was basically wearing the same thing to each one. A sort of “photographers uniform.”

Odds are if you had me as a photographer this year, you probably saw this outfit, or something very similar! I almost always wear jeans while I shoot, since they are comfortable and flexible. Yes, again, these are the SAME MADEWELL JEANS I wear pretty much everywhere. I have them in a light denim wash and black as well, and they are my favorite jeans ever. I think almost every Unstyled post has featured them so far, and I’m not sorry!

Unstyled : Kansas City Style Blogger

Can we talk about this watch? It was made by Prairie Goods in Kansas City, and I purchased it for my husband for Father’s Day. He’s a bit of a watch junkie, and seems to have a timepiece for every occasion. Not only is this a beautiful piece, but Jason (the owner of Prairie Goods) held it especially for me when I was a last minute shopper (bad, Megan). Lately, I’ve been borrowing it from the husband, and one of these days, I may not give it back!

Unstyled : Kansas City Style Blogger

Almost every year I get a pair of boots for my birthday, and this year I picked up these Danner hiking boots. I’m gonna get real, you guys…I bought them after I read the book Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail earlier this fall, and I saw Reece Witherspoon wearing these in the movie version. I’m actually not a hiker. But they are comfy and perfect for tromping around in fields and off the beaten path while looking for a perfect session location. They are warmer than sneakers when it’s chilly, but they can get dirty. Actually, they look better the more I wear them!

The army green Mossimo coat was a clearance rack purchase from Target a few years ago, and while the zipper breaks constantly, I still love it. The pockets are big and deep enough to hold a second lens and an extra battery pack. The grey sweatshirt is also a Target find.

Unstyled : Kansas City Style Blogger

While the busy season may be ending, I have a feeling you’ll still be able to find me in this outfit…at least until it starts to snow and I need something a little warmer!

(All photos by me, with my faithful assistant, Tate, who made goofy faces behind the tripod while I posed in a field behind Lucy’s dance school, like the true dork that I am!)

Unstyled 004 KC Style Blogger

Unstyled : 004

Unstyled 004 KC Style Blogger

Welcome to another edition of Unstyled, a fashion blog series for the rest of us! Is everyone ready for fall? I’m so excited…autumn is absolutely my favorite season! And not only because it’s my birthday season (although that is pretty fun too!), but because I love the cooler weather, the smell of crunchy leaves and being able to wear jeans without being so sweaty I stick to my car seat.

Unstyled 004 KC Style Blogger

This outfit is a transitional one, perfect for the early days of fall. I’m not quite ready for boots season yet (and neither is the 90 degree Kansas weather), so I am making my summertime staple, my Birkenstock sandals, last me a couple more weeks. Now, this is where a legit style blogger would’ve made sure her pedicure was fresh and gorgeous…but let’s be real, I just didn’t have time for that. So here are my feet in their badly polished glory!

Unstyled 004 KC Style Blogger

Part of my style mantra is to reuse favorite items, and that’s why I’m featuring these black Madewell jeans for the second time. If it works, keep working it! This incredible buffalo plaid button down from Aritzia is the most comfy shirt I own. I love that it has a looser fit, since I often have issues with button downs gaping around my chest area. It’s one of those boyfriend styles that is made feminine with a good, skinny jean.

Unstyled 004 KC Style Blogger

As always, my jewelry is minimal. Anything too flashy would looks nuts with this ensemble. However, I rarely leave the house without my watch, and this is no exception. I love how this piece seems to be in every Unstyled post, because that’s really what style is all about for me. While I love trends as much as anyone, I feel like owning a few good pieces is worth way more than having an endless closet full of items I’ll only wear once or twice. (Note: My particular watch is sold out, but you can find a similar one here.)

Unstyled 004 KC Style Blogger

Now I just need to grab a Pumpkin Spice Latte and I’m ready for fall! Happy September, friends!

UnStyled : My Skin Secrets 001

In the past few years, I’ve totally overhauled not only my style, but my health and how I take care of my body. While I’m nowhere near perfect, I have made some changes that have made a significant impact, especially when it comes to my skin. Like many women, I’ve spent tons of money and time attempting to find a “magic” cream to fix issues that have plagued my skin, such as acne, the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, sun damage and dark circles underneath my eyes. But in the past two or three years, I’ve finally found some solutions, most of which cost very little.

Unstyled Skin Secrets

The number one thing I’ve done to enhance my skin is quit drinking alcohol. While there are obviously numerous benefits to quitting drinking, this was so tangible and evident, it really helped me keep my resolve when I first stopped imbibing. Within two weeks of quitting, my skin was transformed, and it’s continued to get better as time goes on. My acne and dark spots on my face cleared up, my fine lines smoothed out, my eyes were transformed – no longer puffy or dark – and my skin now has a healthy glow. I also started drinking tons of water each day, and recently have cut out most sodas and sugary drinks. I was told by my favorite makeup artist, the best way to get rid of dark circles or undereye puffiness is to drink a giant glass of cold water. She was right! If you suffer from sallow skin or undereye issues, before you apply any makeup, try drinking a tall glass of water and wait five minutes. You’ll be shocked at the difference.

However, even as my skin has become remarkably healthier, I have had some issues arise that needed specific attention. Earlier this year I noticed small patches of acne appearing on my chin. These weren’t like my past acne, they were painful and seemed to spread quickly. A few months ago I switched over to oil cleansing as opposed to harsh soaps, so I thought maybe that was the culprit. But after trying every over-the-counter application, nothing helped!

After some research and a doctor’s visit, I found out that I was suffering from something called cystic acne. This condition is characterized by large, painful bumps, usually deep in the skin. It stays around for quite a long time, and can cause scarring. It is brought on (for me) by stress and hormones, which explains why it showed up right around when I went to New York City for the first time this spring and was completely overwhelmed with life/work stress. I wasn’t sleeping, my diet wasn’t great and I wasn’t taking very good care of myself, which all contributed to this issue.

My doctor said he could prescribe a steroid, but I wanted to try some natural treatments before I jumped to medication. The first thing I did was cut down on sugar and salt in my diet. I’m sort of a sweet tooth, so I couldn’t cut it out COMPLETELY, but I did my best. I also made sleep more of a priority. I was working late into the night, and found I was unable to slow down my brain when I was done, so I’d end up sitting up watching TV or reading until 2 or 3 in the morning. I decided to try and stop working at night (for the most part) and get up earlier to work instead.

cystic acne facial mask

I also found this incredible, natural, affordable treatment for cystic acne. You take equal parts lemon juice and apple cider vinegar, then mix in turmeric powder to make a paste. You leave it on your inflamed skin for five to ten minutes, then wash off (beware: the turmeric will leave a slight yellow stain on your skin, so you will probably have to use soap and water with a warm washcloth and not just rinse with water). I would follow this up with a touch of moisturizer.

The combination of the lemon juice (an astringent), the vinegar (restores pH balance) and turmeric (an anti-inflammatory) helped clear up my acne in about three days. The diet, stress and sleep changes help keep the condition away, but I know if I flare up again, this mask will be the first thing I try! Turns out I don’t need expensive creams or treatments to keep my skin healthy and happy. Some sleep, a lot of water and a few items in my own kitchen do the trick!

UnStyled : 003

In this edition of Unstyled, I want to talk about shopping your closet. Mostly because if you’ve been around for a while, you’re probably thinking, “Girl, we get it, you like that peach skirt.” I’ve posted about it before (once or twice), but when I started to pull together a look for this post, it yelled at me from the back of my closet, “Wear me! I’m adorable!” This skirt is super-demanding. But not wrong, because it is possibly the best purchase I ever made from Forever21. Which, if I’m being real, isn’t a huge feat or anything, but that doesn’t make it any less awesome.

Unstyled Kansas City Style Blogger

Skirt : Forever21
Tank : Madewell
Sandals : Saltwaters
Hat : H&M
Bag : For Purchase Here

Unstyled Kansas City Style Blogger

Can we please talk about this canvas bag for a minute? Many of you may be wondering why a circa 1997 Meg Ryan bag is my dream tote, but if you only understood my deep, undying love for “You’ve Got Mail,” you’d get it. On daily basis, I find myself wondering, “What would Kathleen Kelly do?” Usually the answer is either a.) buy some daisies, b.) smell some freshly sharpened pencils, or c.) add more twinkle lights. I think all the world’s problems could probably be solved with a few more twinkle lights, you know? So when I saw this bag, I had to buy it. They sell out super-quickly, so if you’re a Kathleen Kelly fangirl like me, you might want to get yours ordered.

Unstyled Kansas City Style Blogger

I’m still trying to decide if I can pull off wearing a fun hat. Some days I think I look totally hip and adorable. Other days I think I look like I’m trying too hard. But that’s why this is called UnStyled…because I have no idea what I’m doing. What do you guys think? Are you pro-hat? Pro-twinkle lights? Pro-reusing old outfits that you’ve already posted about several times before? I need answers!

(Thanks to Lane of Missalaneyus for snapping these pics!)

Three Cheers for Pink Hair

A few weeks ago my husband and I were looking through all of our past holiday cards (which I’m gathering for another project) when he said, “See, you change your hair a lot!” I had been protesting that I had the same hairstyle for about 10 years, and I was getting bored. Again. But that husband of mine is pretty observant, and he’s not wrong! While technically I have had long, blond, wavy hair for 10+ years, I do not like getting stuck in a rut and I do change it up quite a bit. It seems like every two years or so I get anxious and end up cutting blunt bangs (my idea of “change” without too much actual change). I also used to color my hair quite a bit, highlighting it to be a sunny blond and even adding lowlights to dial down the color a little. But for the last two and a half years I haven’t colored my hair at all, and I was pleasantly surprised. Turns out, I really like my natural hair color! Who knew.

But, because I’m me, I started to get that little itch to change it up a few weeks back. When I mentioned this, he just asked that I didn’t cut bangs again (he’s not a fan) and I promised I wouldn’t. However, I’m not sure what I ended up doing was any less dramatic…

Pink Hair

Yep, that’s pink! I have wanted to do something fun with my hair color for such a long time, but because of my career in corporate marketing, I felt like I couldn’t do something so “unprofessional.” Oh, and I’m 32-years-old. I was always afraid a funky hair color would scream, “I’M IN MY MID-THIRTIES BUT IT’S OKAY BECAUSE I’M COOL! I’M NOT A REGULAR MOM, I’M A COOL MOM! WHY ARE YOU RUNNING AWAY?”

Six days after coloring...and no washing!

Six days after coloring…and no washing!

These days with my freelance life, I have a lot more flexibility when it comes to my attire and how I look on a daily basis, so I finally decided it was time to go for it. I requested “dusty pink highlights” from my stylist Amy, and she totally delivered! I love the look because it’s super subtle, but really, really fun. And once the pink fades, I will have golden blond highlights where they were. If it were up to me, I would’ve totally colored my whole head, but that’s why Amy rules, because she suggested a little less might be more, especially since it was my first time trying a color like this. She was totally right, however now I am terrified of the color fading because I love it so much! I was told the more I wash my hair, the quicker it will fade, so I haven’t washed it in six days…can I get a high five for dry shampoo? It’s the best (I use this brand if you’re curious).

So far, the pink is sticking around and that makes me so happy! Turns out, this blond is actually having more fun as a pinky!

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