Wednesday, April 10, 2019

NIGHT OUT FIT | Reformation Venezia Butterfly Midi Dress and Static Nails Pop-On Reusable Manicure Set Review




As some of you may have heard in my Evening Skin Care Routine video, I am in esthetician school and have been rather preoccupied learning about skin and practicing facials. As much as I am obsessed with skin care, it is exhausting to be a 30 year old in school for five days a week for 8 hours a day. That’s why I look forward to nights out more than ever!

I actually make the effort to dress up and put on a full face of makeup now since I’m in scrubs and bare-faced most of the week. I’m also still shedding my winter weight which means a lot of sweaters and even more dresses. Nordstrom recently started carrying one of my favorite dress brands, Reformation, so I splurged on the Butterfly Midi in Venezia — a sweet yet sophisticated mini floral print. I fell instantly in love with the vintage-inspired silhouette, particularly the d├ęcolletage-highlighting neckline.


Reformation dresses are impressive in quality and flow beautifully, but do check out brands like Ali & Jay and Bardot for more affordable options that are equally pretty and offer an impressive selection in prints, sizes, and lengths. I luckily didn’t have to hem this dress because the flounced skirt of the “midi” length stops right at my ankles, but I highly recommend starting your night out search at Nordstrom early so that you can take advantage of their alterations department! 


I was hesitant to order a dress so expensive sight unseen being that it’s an online exclusive, but the fluttery feminine sleeves won me over. Reformation's dresses tends to run on the smaller side, so I sized up to a size 2 and it’s still a bit snug around the rib cage. It is, however, more comfortable than I expected since my arms have full mobility. Petite women like me, 5’0 tall and fluctuating at my heaviest around 115 or less pounds currently, are generally advised against wearing large print patterns or prints whatsoever because they can overwhelm our frames. This dress, however, has a botanical print that is whimsical without leaning bohemian, and I don’t think it is visually distracting at all!


Now I’m a traditionalist when it comes to heels because I mostly own pumps, but I really wanted to try something trendier. My friend Rachel, the Beauty Professor, raved about the Steve Madden Camille Clear Sandals, so I figured they would be a good investment for summer outings. They are so versatile and the block heel makes them both stable and comfortable! I normally wear a 5.5 in most pumps so I ordered those online first but went to #nordstrom to exchange them for a size 6. My toes are slightly longer than my big toe so sizing up gave them ample room without hanging over, and the clear straps subtly elongate the look of my legs in shorts and skirts.


One thing I’m rather gutted about since starting school is that I no longer maintain acrylics or even gel manicures, although seeing how sadly damaged my bare nails had become the first couple weeks were tough. It is a blessing in disguise; they are able to breathe and recuperate for a few months plus I found a solution to temporarily dressing up my nails without mess. Nordstrom recently started carrying Static Nails so on special nights out, I have been using press-on nails instead! 


I kept my expectations low, but they really are perfect for dates and weddings or just a feminine pick-me-up. They’re offered in multiple shapes and colors and finishes which keeps things interesting! I do think the Pop-On Reusable Manicure Set in Sugar Floss Stiletto shape and length is much more wearable and manageable straight out of the box. This is all preference, but I rarely get my nails done longer than 1/4 inch past the end of my fingertip for maneuverability’s sake. 


Plus, the pink-nude Sugar Floss color is so flattering, with just a hint of translucency that makes the set look convincingly natural. 24 reusable nails in twelve different sizes per hand are provided, so I’m able to create a short set and a longer set by trimming and filing. 


It took me approximately 15 minutes to cut and file the black Conjure set which is sold out everywhere. The glossy black nails are edgy but after gluing them on, I laughed because they looked like Halloween claws on my petite nails. This set has nails that are not only longer, but wider as well, which is not ideal for my extra narrow nail beds. I kept the right hand’s nails extra short and super round for the ease of contact use and skin care application, but I filed the left hand’s nails to a pointy oval shape at a length I normally get my acrylics to show versatility in this post. It was quite a massive reshaping so application to end took about one hours. Removal is quick with a hot water soak, and these nails can be easily reapplied with more glue, and even painted.


Nails are sort of a given on nights outs, but I hesitate to accessorize due to my tendency to lose things. Thanks to my twin sister, however, I’ve been converted to Kendra Scott! I have been known to have a strong preference for (overpriced) designer costume jewelry but I have to say, Kendra Scott is new go-to brand for earrings. People randomly drop me compliments whenever I wear them, and I have to admit, the quality is consistently good and the price point very reasonable. 


Nordstrom recently ran an online-only Kendra Scott promo so I jumped at the chance to receive a third pair for free! I chose a classic — the Tessa Stone Stud Earrings in Iridescent Drusy/Gold — to wear to school. Then I selected a fancier evening pair — Circe Drop Earrings in Lustre Glass/Gold — to match the Venezia dress, and the promotional pair is another lustre glass drop style with silver hardware but more casual. Personally I love translucent touches and have since the ‘90s so I felt it was only appropriate that the earrings matched my footwear selection! When it comes to accessories, shoes, makeup, and outfits I prefer to take a holistic cohesive approach (including matching hardware) to keep my look visually appealing especially if I plan to take photos for Nights Out. 


Again I apologize for being away so long, but as school becomes more manageable, I’ll be back full time to share everything I’ve been learning. Even though my heart will always be devoted to the luxe brands I’ve used my entire life, I have been researching and testing the best in affordable skin care. I truly believe good skin should be accessible to all, so I hope you’ll allow me to help you guide through the madness that is beauty nowadays. 

Last but not least I am wearing my favorite new everyday lipstick by Charlotte Tilbury called Bond Girl and my clutch is new from Senreve, called the Aria Belt/Convertible Bag. Many thanks to @Nordstrom for sponsoring this post and allowing me to share some new favorites!

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