Welcome to Real Life Style Blog!

Can changing your wardrobe really change your life? Of course it can! Imagine how light and powerful you would feel if 100% of the clothes in your closet were the right clothes for you right now. Imagine that your wardrobe reflected both your personality and your personal style, while suiting your lifestyle. That, ladies and gentlemen, is called Real Life Style. Want to be able to look and feel put together in just 2 minutes a day? You can.

Click here for more information about how you can work with Lani and click here to schedule your free consultation. Because fashion should be an outlet for fun, not frustration!

Thursday, October 31, 2013

The Fashion World Finally Realizes That My Nude Is Not Always Your Nude

Thanks to Kate Middleton and her L.K. Bennett nude pumps, most women (not just those with a fashion stylist advising them) now know that the nude pump has become a classic wardrobe staple. No other shoe can elongate your legs and match every color dress in your wardrobe. 

For years I have been frustrated by my inability to recommend this problem-solving shoe to all of my clients due to a lack of "diversity" in the nude pump arena. My quote has always been, "My nude is not your nude!" Imagine my delight when I saw a Washington Post article (thanks for sending Rachel!) announcing a new line of "Les Nudes" shoes with that exact sentiment.  Welcome to the year 2013! Christian Louboutin has become the first major designer to place pumps in a range of colors under the “nude” label. There is even a "Louboutin Shades" app for the iPhone that will match a shoe color to a picture of your foot! Most of the line has already sold out so call your local store to see what they've got left or get on the waiting list.

Christian Louboutin's Sold Out Nude Collection

Another important wardrobe staple, just like the nude pump, is the nude bra and panty. MySkins offers 20 different colors in their underwear and bra lines, meant to appear invisible with your skin tone. All the panties are 100% cotton and completely seamless to ensure that no one will ever see your underwear through your clothes. To find your perfect nude, you can either download a PDF version of their Skin Tone Color Card or request to have a version mailed to you. 

Major makeup lines have also discovered the demand for products ranging in more than just a few skin tones. Urban Decay's Naked Skin Liquid Foundation comes in 18 different shades, from very light to dark chestnut with both warm and cool skin tones in mind.

However, if you're looking for a liquid foundation at a drugstore price point, Loreal's True Match Blendable makeup is also available in 33 neutral, cool, or warm shades to match your skin perfectly. True Match is also full of Vitamins A and C to keep your skin nourished. I still swear by my Youngblood Primer and Foundation to keep my makeup on perfectly for an entire 18 hour day, but True Match is what I reach for on other, more low key days. It is amazing what a match this foundation can be to your skin!

Most of you probably think bright and Lady Gaga when referring to Mac makeup, but a client (with the hardest skin tone to pinpoint of anyone I've ever worked with!) turned me on to Mac's Tinted LipGlass years ago. Among the 43 different shades are many that can serve as "nude" lipgloss for every skin tone. It lasts for hours and looks amazing on its own, over lip pencils or lipsticks. 

Happy Matching!

Thursday, October 24, 2013

5 Fashion Books You Should Read-Until I Write Mine of Course!

Believe it or not, I get that not everyone can have a stylist come to their house to personally walk them through the process of creating their best wardrobe. This is why I've gathered the top 5 Fashion books that I think you should read-until I write my own!

This list was inspired by my friend and fellow fashion stylist Lauren Rothman's new book, "Style Bible: What to Wear to Work". Wondering what to wear to work? Who isn't?! Buy this fabulous book, which is mentioned in the November issue of Vanity Fair. Congrats on such an amazing accomplishment, Lauren!

Lauren Rothman of Styleauteur and I hanging out at her C. Wonder book event

How insanely cute are these Georgetown Cupcakes with miniature Style Bible covers in chocolate?! They tasted pretty good too!

Ok, enough pictures of cupcakes! How about some fabulous accessories at C. Wonder? Lauren was actually wearing the amazing boots at her book party. How on trend are these accessories?

C. Wonder has some incredible necklaces!

Calf Hair Leather Clutch

Suede Gold Ankle Boot from C. Wonder

I'm a little prejudiced about the next two books because they are by Jesse Garza & Joe Lupo of Visual Therapy, the two men who taught me everything I know about the styling business. Having worked with them for 7 years, I can tell you there is no better basic book out there than their first one, "Nothing to Wear? A 5-Step Cure for the Common Closet"

Who isn't confused by which colors are best for them? Visual Therapy's second book, "Life in Color", answers all color questions finally, confidently and clearly.

The final word on dressing for your body type. Enough said.

A classic. This one is also illustrated by Ruben Toledo, just like "Nothing to Wear?". Tip: Buy anything Ruben Toledo illustrates!

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

A Fab New Store and Beauty Galore

A few weeks ago I was lucky enough to attend the re-opening of Saks Off Fifth Outlet at Potomac Mills in a brand new space with other area fashion bloggers. Full disclosure: I've styled some great events at Potomac Mills.  As much of a fan as I have always been of the mall, especially the Last Call by Neiman Marcus (they get direct shipments from Bergdorf Goodman!), I was never that enthused about the mall's Saks Off Fifth store.   After receiving a tour of the new store and being treated to an incredible beauty box of goodies (see below!), I have a whole new outlook and will be taking clients to shop the store ASAP.

Now light, bright and with INCREDIBLE deals on major designers (can we say Derek Lam and Ralph Lauren Collection?) the store is irresistible. I picked up a black fur collar to mix into my fall wardrobe and my husband (can we say furlough shopping?) scored an incredibly well-fitting suit from one of the store's new private labels. See me below with the dream Derek Lam outfit I put together during the event. In case you are interested, that outfit was 70% off! Really good thing I am pregnant and can't buy any real clothes...

New Barneys Beauty Floor

In other exciting store news, I happened to be in New York for the recent opening of Barneys' newly renovated beauty floor. Barneys made big news when they first moved their beauty floor to the lower level (i.e. the basement) years ago. On October 4th, the Barneys flagship store in New York, as well as the store in Beverly Hills, unveiled the new format, meant to emphasize the Barneys environment over the individual brands. In short, it is a stunning presentation and a total retail game changer. And just in case you mess up your hair while trying on clothes upstairs, there is now a Valery Joseph-helmed blow dry bar: Barneys Blow Bar.

Fall Beauty Trends

Orange and purple. Seriously, keep reading! If you happen to be near the Henri Bendel store in New York City, I highly suggest you stop by the Giella beauty counter. I've written before about my favorite all-in-one bronzer/highlighter/blush in the world, EYE M GLAM. This season Giella sent me some new updates for my fall beauty routine, a few of which mix fabulously with my favorite beauty product.

I love the in-between pink and orange hue of Giella's latest blush color: Bashful. It is so new that it isn't even on the website yet! It is soft and pretty on its own and a great addition to your usual bronzer for a more impactful look.

Can one be in love with a lipstick? Actually, Glum Plum is too good to be called just lipstick. It has a lightweight, but somehow long-lasting, gel texture. I was a little freaked out at how dark and well, plum, it was when I initially opened the tube. Imagine my surprise when it went on as a gorgeous stain. I've been seeing the strong dark lipstick look on the runway and thinking I could never pull it off. Well now we all can! This color is also hot off the makeup presses for fall.

Plum Lipstick as seen at Vera Wang Fall 2013

The copper eyelid is a twist on the orange color story for fall. I would NEVER have tried this if Giella hadn't sent it to me personally. It is sooo fun!!! She shows it with a beautiful matching copper lipstick, Manic, but I liked it on my skin tone best with a more true, sheer orange like Candy Apple Revlon Lip Butter.

Orange Eyeshadow as seen at J.Mendel Fall 2013

How are you having fun with your beauty routine this fall?

Thursday, October 10, 2013

The First Ever Guest Post from Mr. Real Life Style!

The Top 5 Fundamentals of Office Wear for Men

With the government shut down and Mr. Real Life Style stuck at home, I've been tasked with putting together some workplace basics for the guys. These tips aren't for the super-trendy man who is already going sock-less in monkstrap shoes. Rather these are the“Top 5 Fundamentals of Office Wear” that will keep you (or your partner) looking sharp, professional and on top of the fashion game.

1) How to Wear Pants Properly: Whether you're in a suit or in business casual, RLS continues to endorse flat front pants. These are a more modern look and will make you look thinner than pants with pleats.

Bonobos Heathertones Grey, $178 

Exceptions are only for seasoned gentlemen wearing suits or the super-trendy catching pleats that have recently re-emerged on the runway. However, I can tell you with confidence, that not many DC government workers are wearing anything that hot off the runway. For those considering "the new pleat", remember that the pleats should lay completely flat while you're standing and be worn at the waist—not below. The newest interpretation, for the super stylish, have fewer pleats, are more likely to use a “reverse pleat” (facing away from the fly), and a more narrow silhouette, meaning you're more likely to find what you’re looking for in the store than in your closet.

2) The Down Low on Dress Shirts: Guys, just as you should have purged your wardrobe of puffy pants, it’s time to get rid of the puffy dress shirt hanging out over the back of your pants. Go for a more narrowly cut shirt that still considers comfort (the shirt shouldn't be so narrow that the buttons are pulling).

For men who aren't skinny but are looking for a slimmer cut, check out the “slim fit” selection at Charles Tyrwhitt, which provides more space than their “extra slim” line.

3) Shirt Collars: Whether you opt for a classic or spread, make sure that your collar corners aren’t curling up like elves’ shoes. Remember those little plastic tabs that came in the collar? Those should come out when the shirt goes to the cleaners but go back in before you head to the office. Lost your collar stays long ago? Pick up a set of various size stays, so you're set with all different collars. Better yet, your wife should get you a set of custom message stays from Red Envelope.

4) Match Your Leathers: Some suits or slacks deserve black shoes. Other combinations will go better with brown. Either way, make sure your leathers match. If you opt for black shoes, make sure you’re wearing your black belt. And likewise, brown shoes mean a brown belt. If you can, pick a watch band to match too.

5) Suiting Up: I find most men know the color basics (or have fallen into them). Have a navy suit, have a grey suit, and build out from there. We've already talked a bit about flat front pants versus pleats. So, let’s talk about fit. First and foremost, make sure your suit jacket fits across the shoulders. If it doesn't fit there, forget it, no matter how much you like the pattern, price or fabric.

We recommend sticking with two-button suits. They’re classic and will stay in style. More modern silhouettes are cut in above the waist and have higher armholes. If you’re still in the baggy Tony Soprano suits, it’s time for a change. Tailor the pants and sleeves to fit your limbs. The pants should hit just at the top of your shoes, and the jacket sleeves should hit at the wrist bone, giving you an opportunity to show a bit of shirt sleeve.

Some companies are now integrating working button holes into the sleeves, which is a nice touch. But if you have shorter arms like me, take a pass. A tailor won’t be able to adjust the sleeve length if there are actual buttonholes, and it’s better to have a properly fitting suit than something that doesn't fit with bells and whistles.

Follow these simple steps and you’ll be a step ahead of the competition in your office. Check back later in the season for five tips on taking office wear to the next level.