0 IS a Size Too

0 IS a Size Too

You know how your mother or teacher always told you, “If you don’t have something nice to say, don’t say anything at all”? Well this is true but what happens when people say things that aren’t nice? What are you supposed to do? I typically bite my tongue because I don’t like confrontation, but lately I have talked to many women about this specific topic and feel that it’s an important one to share. Skinny shaming. Yes, I said the word that people think doesn’t exist. Body shaming of ANY size is just wrong. Again, the whole if you don’t have something nice to say just keep quiet thing. 
I think it’s important to share this topic because we have all been guilty of body shaming someone at one point, even if it was yourself. Every person is truly beautiful and unique, yet we are so focused on outside appearance and what size we aspire to fit into, that we loose sight of what’s on the inside. There’s a famous picture of Sophia Bush wearing a shirt that says “0 IS NOT A SIZE” and while I love her, I don’t support that statement. 0 is a real size just like every other size out there, I promise. Telling someone who is a size 0 to “eat a cheeseburger” will not magically make them a size 4. Just because you’re a size 0 and might not have a lot of curves doesn’t mean you’re not sexy OR just because you do have curves doesn’t mean you’re not sexy either. 
I scroll through Instagram and see the Kardashians photos in their yoga pants and I can promise you, it doesn’t matter how many XXX you add in front of XS, I still won’t have those curves. For some reason I have associated curves with being “sexy”. I like to eat. A LOT. I love pasta, chocolate, and wine. I also love juice, yoga and vegetables. One day I might have curves or I may not, but it does not define what is meaningful in life. I have friends of all shapes and sizes and we don’t ask each other what our sizes are. Okay, only when we are shopping together and find an item that is on sale or too cute to pass up. I don’t care what size my friend is, when I need someone to talk to at 2am they are there. 
I challenge myself and everyone else to stop focusing on size. Rethink your definition of beautiful and sexy. When you get out of the shower, stand in front of the mirror and admire your body for what it is and be grateful for everything it’s capable of; getting you up out of bed, walking, moving, etc. 
More body love and self love. 

XOXO, 
Gee Nicolette 

Shirt: Spiritual Gangster. Find here
Denim Jacket: Ci Sono
Yoga Pants: T.J. Maxx

The Ultimate Hair Experience

The Ultimate Hair Experience

“Invest in your hair, it’s the crown you never take off.”

I was recently invited to come in and experience the Kelly Cardenas Salon in Wicker Park. Let me just tell you guys, my visit was the most relaxing hair experience I have ever had! The services I received were their Wash House Experience, Blow Dry & Style. 
The staff was super friendly and greeted me with a mimosa (which always makes me a happy girl) and gave me a tour of the salon. My stylist, Justice, was an absolute sweetheart! She started off my services by taking me to the Wash House area. I didn’t capture an image of this area in efforts to respect the space for other customers, but it was a relaxing room with dim/candlelit lighting and zen music playing in the background. This was by far the BEST wash experience I have ever had. Not only did Justice wash/condition my hair and massage my scalp, she also gave me a neck and shoulder massage for total relaxation. 
Before my Blow Dry & Style, Justice asked me a few questions to assess my hair -are there any issues I notice with my hair (for me, it’s always the frizziness!), what products I currently use, and what type of style I would like for my service. With the crazy humidity in Chicago, my hair has remained up in a ponytail for most of the month. I love beachy waves, but whenever I try to achieve them at home, I step outside and my hair frizzes (like Monica in the episode of Friends). Justice used products to help control my frizz and I instantly noticed it during my Blow Dry. As you can see in the below photo, the blow dryers hang from the ceiling, which I thought was the cutest decor until I realized they are actually real! 
Here is the beachy wave hairstyle! AND even after dining outside shortly after, it still remained tamed 🙂 I loved my experience so much, I booked my next appointment with Justice for a cut and balayage! 
So cute- the bathroom had a board filled with prayer requests
If you have never been to Kelly Cardenas Salon, you can experience the Wash House, Blow Dry & Style services COMPLIMENTARY. Book today with Justice and mention my name/this post! 
XOXO,
Gee Nicolette
UPDATE 7/29:
I wanted to add in an update so you could see how my hair turned out for my cut/color appointment.  My goal was to brighten up my hair a bit for the summer, so Justice added highlights/balayage. She only took a little length off of the bottom but added dimensions throughout my hair as well as took out some of the thickness (pretty sure my head felt 5 pounds lighter). I really liked my length when I originally visited her for a blow dry & style, so I love that she listened to me and freshened up my cut without taking a drastic amount off. 

Again, if you have not yet been to Kelly Cardenas Salon, you can experience the Wash House, Blow Dry & Style services COMPLIMENTARY. Book today with Justice and mention my name/this post! 

XOXO,
Gee Nicolette

Fashion Fixer Upper

Fashion Fixer Upper

Some people like to spend their days watching people flip homes on TV, I like to spend mine by shopping and flipping clothes. Just give me my own TV show and call it The Fashion Fixer Upper. I love a good bargain, but also enjoy having unique clothing pieces. I haven’t always been a huge fan of online shopping, but when I learned about Shoptiques, a website that sells clothing from different boutiques around the world, I had to give it a try!

I came across a very interesting denim patchwork dress for only $3.00 (see below)! There was something about this piece that really intrigued me. I wanted to purchase it so I could fix it up and style it to be more flattering to me and my body. This is something I’ve always done since I was a little girl. I would by the fashion pieces that were left over on the sale rack and would challenge myself to style and bring them to life in a new way. Something about this has always been fun to me. 
In the next few pictures you will see how I styled and personalized this piece to make it more flattering to my body shape and personal style. 
Before:
(Image via Shoptiques)
After:
The first thing I did when I received this dress was cut the three hanging fabric/ribbon pieces off on the side. Since this dress is one size fits all, it’s more of a looser fit (as seen in the original photo). I paired it with a belt and rolled up the sleeves to make it hug my figure more. I left the first few buttons undone and added my go-to favorite necklaces, a fun clutch, and velvet booties (of course).
This dress is my new favorite “fun” addition to my closet. I can’t wait to wear it again! 
I encourage everyone to switch up their day-to-day fashion pieces by styling them differently or pairing with new accessories. You will see just how new you can make your clothes look! Maybe challenge yourself to hit the sale rack or a thrift store and see if you can “fix up” something to make it your own. Rock your new masterpiece and send me your pictures 🙂 
XOXO,
Gina

Dress: Shoptiques. Find here
Shoes: Steve Madden. Find here
Necklaces: Pink Jules Boutique
Clutch: Diane Von Furstenberg 
Belt: Macy’s
Location: Catalyst Ranch
Viva La Brunch!

Viva La Brunch!

Ways to make me happy:
1. Take me to brunch
2. Make me brunch
3. Be brunch
Pretty simple right? After all, I didn’t think I was that complicated 😉
But seriously, why do I like brunch so much? I have no idea.. maybe it’s the idea of bottomless mimosas, delicious food and spending quality time with your family/friends. If you’re from a place that brunches hardcore, then chances are you know what I’m talking about. In Chicago, I would say we are pro brunchers. We have so many delicious brunch spots there’s just too many to name (and too many to try!). 
So what is the most important thing about prepping for brunch? Picking out the perfect brunch outfit (after you’ve picked the most Instagram-able brunch spot, of course). 
For me, the perfect outfit depends on a few deciding factors: the plans I had the previous night, the location of the brunch spot, who I am brunching with, and the time. 
A graphic Tee with a cute (brunch) quote is usually the winner for me, and yes, I have multiple shirts with brunch quotes. Weather depending, I will throw on a jacket because I am ALWAYS chilled in restaurants, until the mimosas start flowing. A pair of yoga pants is usually the go-to if I am going more of the sporty look route (which is usually what ends up happening), BUT this time, I chose to wear my SUPER comfy jeggings- which are basically leggings that look like jeans, so it’s actually perfect. Top the look off with a cute hairstyle or if you are feeling a little lazy/don’t want to add any more dry shampoo to your hair, a baseball cap or floppy hat will do the trick!
Then you are ready to brunch.. now just be sure to warn your fellow brunchers that you need to capture the perfect Instagram photo before they can touch their food!
Comment below with your favorite spot to brunch at 🙂 
Gina’s favorite brunch spots in Chicago:
Beatrix
Bub City
Kanela Breakfast Club
Meli Cafe
Yolk
Hub 51
Siena Tavern
LYFE Kitchen (great healthy choice!)
Troquet
Pinstripes
The Hampton Social
Mahalo
Rockit 
Blue Door Kitchen & Garden
Carnivale
Lou Mitchel’s
Shirt: Old Navy. Find similar here
Jacket: Pacsun. Find similar here
Jeans: T.J. Maxx 
Purse: From a street vendor at a fest
Hat: Icing (sold out online) Find similar here
Yoga Pants Every.Damn.Day

Yoga Pants Every.Damn.Day

I come home from work and immediately put on a pair of yoga pants. Then, I eat dinner, run errands and go to a yoga class. When I come home, I shower and change into a pair of my “sleeping” yoga pants. I wake up and do the same thing over again. The weekend comes and I spend pretty much every day in yoga pants. Hence the title of this post, yoga pants every damn day! The amount of yoga pants that I have is insane and probably a little excessive. My justification for purchasing another pair of yoga pants is that I literally wear a pair every damn day. 
I’ve realized, that everyone spends money on their guilty pleasure, mind just so happens to be shopping for a new pair of yoga pants. Since I love fashion and yoga, it works itself out 😉 
Now, I may have an excessive amount of yoga pants, BUT they are mostly from stores such as Burlington, T.J. Maxx, Ross, Target and other discount retailers. I highly suggest checking out these retailers as they often carry name brands such as Under Armour, Nike, Adidas, etc. 

Moral of the story, buy more yoga pants! Haha, kidding. BUT, if you were looking for a sign, this is it 🙂
Shirt: Spiritual Gangster. Find here
Denim Jacket: Ci Sono. Find similar here 
Yoga Pants: T.J. Maxx. Find similar here
Shoes: H&M. Find similar here