#finfree

There's nothing I love more than when Lush e-mail pops up in my inbox and it is regarding something I am already passionate about!
 
Lush Cosmetics has partnered with Discovery Channel's Shark Week, Sharkwater filmmaker Rob Stewart and his organization, United Conservationists, to raise awareness for sharks and stop the unnecessary slaughter for their fins. Rob Stewart has a wonderful film called Shark Water. I have watched it several times, and it really makes you appreciate the beauty of sharks. Check out part Rob's story at the end of this post and join #finfree movement by signing the petition and by purchasing Lush's limited edition Shark Fin soap.

The Shark Fin soap is made of softening seaweed, scrubby fine sea salt and zesty lime oil that make it a refreshing way to cool down this summer. 100% of the price of this soap will be donated to United Conservationists, a non-profit organization dedicated to the protection and conservation of sharks through its Fin Free movement. Now you can swim with the sharks and help protect them too!
 
The Brunette Shake is definately going to support this effort. Remember, Green is Sexy! Be kind to the environment and animals...
 
xx
Hillary
 

 
 
"In August 1999, I was a 19-year-old photographer embarking on my most exciting photo assignment yet: to photograph my favorite species, Hammerhead Sharks, in the Galapagos Islands, Ecuador. As a “fish nerd” I spent as much time with sharks as possible, and grew to understand a very different side of sharks compared to conventional media. To me they were shy, inquisitive, sensitive and important. Being the first animal on earth with jaws, and the only large animal to have endured for 450 million years and five mass extinctions, they’re a huge part of the framework for life in the oceans. Life that gives us most of the oxygen we breathe.
Upon arriving in the Galapagos Islands, instead of finding sharks in all their majesty in the most protected marine reserve on earth, I encountered a fishing line that could stretch from earth to outer space, with thousands of baited hooks and hundreds of dead and dying sharks.
Shark fin soup is a Chinese delicacy so desirable that a single pound of shark fin can sell for more than $400 USD, leading to the practice of finning: keeping only the fins and discarding the bodies, which wastes 95% of the animal. This demand slaughters 100 million sharks each year, decimating 90% of the world’s sharks within my lifetime."


Nega Maluca | Recipe by Camilla Belle

A couple months ago, I posted an interview from The New Potato with Camilla Belle. She talks her favourite foods, recipes, workouts, and where she goes to eat! I absolutely loved the interview.
 
She also shared her own personal recipe for Nega Maluca. As you can see above, it looks mouthwatering and delicious. I'm definately going to give this baby a try!
Set oven to 385 Degrees F.
 
Ingredients:
2 cups all purpose flour
2 cups Nesquick powered chocolate
2 cups sugar
1 tablespoon of baking powder
2 eggs
1 cup canola oil
1 cup boiling water
A pinch of salt
 
Mix the flour, nesquick, sugar, baking powder, and salt in a bowl with a wooden spoon. After the ingredients are thoroughly mixed, add the 2 whole eggs and oil and proceed to stir. Once everything is incorporated, add the boiling water, and stir.
Pour the batter into a bundt cake pan which has been already been greased and place in the oven to bake for 50min.-1 hour. At 50min, test with a toothpick.
Once the cake is finished, I usually make a traditional ganache and pour over the top to cover the cake completely.
 
via The New Potato


 
 

Friday Favorite | Pink Lemonade

Who says you can only make pink lemonade from a can of frozen juice?
 
This is my go-to recipe for a delicious pink treat! It's refreshing and super easy to make. I love that you know all the ingredients you put in it!
 
This is a Brunette Shake approved recipe by Martha Stewart
 
1 cup granulated sugar
2 1/2 cups fresh lemon juice, plus 4 lemons, thinly sliced, for garnish
1 1/2 cups superfine sugar
2 cups cranberry juice
 
 
 
Directions
  1. Step 1
    Bring granulated sugar and 1 cup water to a boil in a medium pan over high heat. Stir until sugar is dissolved. Refrigerate until chilled, about 1 hour.
  2. Step 2
    Add lemon juice, superfine sugar, cranberry juice, and 1 1/2 quarts water to a serving container. Stir until sugar is dissolved. Refrigerate until ready to serve, up to 1 day.
  3. Step 3
    To serve, add ice cubes to fill and garnish with lemon slices.

Fashion 101 | Investment Pieces

Investment pieces can range from that studded Burberry trench coat, those glitter Miu Miu booties EVERYONE had to have a couple years ago, the quilted Chanel bag... The list goes on.

But which pieces do you splurge for? Can you resell them? Which ones do you keep?

Personally, I am described by the line in "Fashion Killa" by A$AP Rocky:

"And Versace: got a lot, but she may never wear it
But she save it so our babies will be flyer than their parents"

I save all my investment and iconic fashion pieces for my hopes that when I have a daughter, she will raid my closet and I can pass down those pieces so she can live life in them like I have!

Iconic fashion pieces are always good to splurge on, if you are financially able and if you are building a fashion collection.

I limit myself to 1 fashion investment per season, and 3 trend pieces per season. The trend pieces I purchase are budget friendly, and I usually purchase them from H&M, Free People or French Connection.

eBay is a great place to buy pieces from Fashion Collaborations from years past that you can no longer find. So of course, think of this when you are purchasing items. Will people be looking for these Missoni for Target dresses in a year? Should I buy it?

Always go for those special, one of a kind pieces when you are shopping. You are unlikely to find these again, and they can go for a pretty penny on eBay or fashion reseller sites.

It is known that accessories and shoes re-sell for a higher price over time and keep their value.

Keep all the packaging, take care of your investment pieces if you are a reseller. If you are 100% sure that you are keeping your investment piece, keep it out and show it off! You deserve it.

A couple of my Investment Pieces are:

Chanel Quilted Jacket from my Nanny
Studded Christian Louboutin Booties
Manolo Blahnik Hangisi in Blue
Prada Baroque Sunglasses in Black




Confessions of a Shopaholic : Volume 1

I have always loved fashion. Beautiful dresses. Strange hats. Vintage pieces... I find beauty in everything. It's almost become a flaw of mine.
 
I love to shop. That is no surprise. As a fashion journalist, I like to see the trends and rate them and experiment. However, I am not personally into the trends. I would rather buy one or two "trendy" pieces per season while saving for investment pieces like a 400$ surf blue Michael Kors Sophie bag, or a 895$ floral Red Valentino dress. 
 
I have always wanted to be able to share my investment pieces with my future daughter. Have her try on my Prada heels, wear my Chanel sunnies...
 
My fashion room was a delight. I could walk in and see everything that I loved on display in a beautiful way.
 
I used to love the sales. SALES! Sigh. My heart beat increases just thinking about it.
 
It shocked me how many "sale" items that I absolutely "needed" at the time of purchase that still have the tags on them. Purses, shoes, pants... everytime I purchase something just because it was a really good deal, I almost never end up wearing it.
 
My passion is fashion and styling. It's either your born with style or you're not. Luckily, I have been around to help many lost souls find a great looking outfit.
 
Having a closet/room full of shoes and dresses is a great thing. But the cost adds up, I had to change my spending habits and how I picked up pieces. I will never pretend to be something I'm not. My style hasn't changed for a long time. I wear a lot of gold, studs, pink, dresses, minimal accessories... My style has been described as edgy, feminine, boho, classic... All of these mixed into an outfit.
 
Shopaholic is me. Yes yes yes. I have finally admitted it to myself.
 
No shoes are worth maxing out your credit card if you're never going to wear them. Remember that!
 
This is only Volume 1 of the Shopaholic series. So next time, I will show you some tips/tricks that I have used to save money and stop spending!
 
xx
 
Hillary
 

 

Beauty Tip/Trick : Nail Polish Stains

Tis the season for showing off that perfect pedicure, and having a bright and colourful manicure!
 
Of course, I have had this problem and probably every other woman on this planet has too.
 
What to do when your constant nail polish wearing causes stains on your nails?!
 
A super easy DIY cure below:
 
-1 tablespoon baking soda
-1/2 teaspoon olive oil
-A few squeezes of lemon juice
 
Measurements are approximate—combine the wet/dry until you’re happy with the consistency.
 
Combine the ingredients in a small bowl or cup (warning: the lemon and baking soda will have a small volcano-like reaction, but it’ll settle down quickly! I had a minor heart attack. Try to avoid this haha.). Rub the mixture onto your nails (try using a soft toothbrush on your nails). Let the mixture sit for a few minutes and simply wash off with warm water.
 
How does it work, you ask?
 
Baking soda acts as an exfoliant while the lemon juice is a natural acidic lightener. Remember the days of putting lemon on your hair to lighten it in the summer? Same idea. Olive oil is a foolproof beauty cure-all and will bring much-needed moisture back into your nails and cuticles.
 
Let's get started on your next colorful manicure. Bright orange polish, anyone?
 
instagram.com/hillarygailstewart
 
 

The Blonde Diaries | Urban Decay Pulp Fiction

As my first post as guest editor on The Brunette Shake, I'm cutting straight to the point and sharing the beautiful news of the limited edition Pulp Fiction inspired Urban Decay collection. 

But I also introduce to you, the start of a new adventure with The Blonde Diaries. A little bit more edgy and down to root of plain ol Alicia Fearon. 

I'm a shopaholic but not just a shopaholic an excessive one at that! Why buy just one when you can buy three is what I always say!

So enjoy the first post of many to come!

Urban Decay has just released that, for the 20th anniversary of the cult classic film Pulp Fiction, they will be launching a limited edition collection inspired by the bad ass leading lady "Mia Wallace". If you have seen the movie, actress Uma Thurman plays the brazen Mia Wallace with those seductive red lips and matching nails and wicked dancing skills. Get prepared because on July 16th your local beauty retailer will have this fabulous line. While supplies last of course.




Not only does the line consist of the classic blood red lipstick, nail lacquer, and lip pencil. It also has a 5 shade eyeshadow palette in brown tones , and a Heavy Metal glitter eyeliner in "Gunmetal".

Definitely a thumbs up to UD on the Quentin Tarantino based collection, fingers crossed for more in the near future ! :)



Laugh the Loudest

 I love it when people laugh and their entire face lights up, a huge smile appears and the mood completely changes in the room.
 
In a World that is so negative and sad, there is also beauty and laughter. Never forget that! Frowning causes wrinkles.
 
What are a few things that make you laugh? Or that make you completely happy inside?
 
Happiness comes from the inside out.
 
Today, do a few things to make yourself,or others, smile. You could be the only smile they see all day, remember that! Kindness does still exist, so let's not let anyone forget that.
 
Here are some suggestions:
 
  • Eat some cotton candy
  • Pay it forward
  • Hit someone with an unsuspecting water balloon (in a nice, silly way)
  • Compliment a stranger on their outfit or their hair
  • Donate some of your old clothes to chairty
  • Volunteer
  • Write a love letter, or a letter "just because"
 
 
 
  •  

Insta-Fashion

Instagram is a great place to network and let people know what's going on it your life.
 
Besides the endless amount of selfies, you can find words of wisdom plus fashion/beauty tips!
 
On The Brunette Shake you can find it all.
 
Make sure to follow The Brunette Shake and my personal Instagram, Hillary Gail Stewart, for daily posts.
 
Instagram is just one more outlet for us to connect and create a community where we can discuss womanly things, fashion, beauty and lifestyle. It's a positive place where we can connect, share and chat!
 
Join me!
 
instagram.com/thebrunetteshake
 
 
 

Real Life Sex and The City Apartment

The set designer for Sex and the City,  Ondine Karady, has filled her one bedroom apartment with vintage/flea market finds plus some wonderful pieces directly from the set of Sex and the City.
 
Can you say LUCKY?
 
 
I would love to come home to a Carrie-esque vibe in my apartment.
 
As it is I just recently finished my own fashion room, and I love it! It is white with gold details. With a shoe wall and everything fashion. I am very pleased with my design! I had a lot of help with the building, and I am definitely grateful for it.
 
Back to the magical Carrie apartment...
 
Emerald-green Emilio Pucci-printed drapes in the living room first adorned the windows of Carrie's apartment.

The painting above Karady's bed once hung in one of the art galleries Charlotte managed.

An art deco desk in the entry first made its debut in Mr. Big's modern apartment.

via: Elle Decor