Summer Essentials

By Erika, Resident Fashionista

Style doesn’t happen in a vacuum.  At least not as far as I’m concerned.  I’m constantly looking to my seriously stylish friends and favorite fashion & style bloggers for fresh ideas, the latest trends and inspiration.  For the YCS list of summer essentials I got together with some of those friends and fashion bloggers to find out exactly what they can’t live without.

Check out what they had to say below!

The Fashion Bloggers

Clearly Taja and Karima are onto something – they both picked similar summer essentials!  Check out Taja’s website, Curvy Urbane, for a variety of make-up, fashion and style tips and ideas – all of which are totally affordable (my wallet thanks her).  Skinny Minority was started by Karima and focuses on embracing your curves and living a healthy, and completely stylish, lifestyle.  Karima’s recipes are some of my faves!  Both women also offer styling, closet organization and wardrobe concierge services.

Taja, Owner/Blogger, Curvy Urbane

Taja says, “My first summertime essential would have to be a super cute, dramatic sandal! One that can take me from a Zoo Trip with the kids to a walk through a festival with the girls.  Secondly, A maxi dress for those unbearable weather days when you still want to look cute but don’t want to wear much. I’m loving the selections that Forever 21 has.”

Where to buy Taja’s essentials:  Sandals  I  Maxi Dress

Karima, Stylist/Wardrobe Concierge/Blogger, Skinny Minority

“Embellished [sandals add] just the right amount of pop for any summer look; plus they are comfortable. If you’re going to wear flats [they] should pack a punch,” says Karima.  “Flowy skirts and dresses are perfect for hot temps; they’re cool, feminine and comfortable. Effortless.”

Where to buy Karima’s essentials:  Sandals (similar styles)  I  Skirt/Dress

Summer essentials FINAL

The Stylish Friends

As a graduate of Howard University, it’s only natural that my friends are uber stylish – it’s what we Bison do.  Darby and Lloyd consistently prove to be two of the most stylish friends I have.  Darby, author of Choices, Voices and Sole, leaves me insanely jealous of her ability to a) mix and match patterns and b) take fashion risks that always prove to be successful (I’m thinking specifically of a pair of hot pink leggings).  Lloyd is a lawyer and all around big deal.  Lloyd is always impeccably dressed for every occasion and spends some of his free time ensuring that the next generation of young men continue to be stylish through the Kappa Beautillion sponsored by the Burlington-Camden Achievement Foundation.

Darby, Writer/Editor/Blogger, Choices, Voices and Sole

Darby’s picks?  “Redken Hair Sun Screen – especially when I have a color in my hair, which is often, it’s the perfect way to make sure my color stays it’s shiny best and my hair stays protected out in the sun.”  She also recommends, “Colorful nail polish – whether it’s a burnt orange/coral, a sky blue, a lime green, or a bright red – summer is my time to play around with the nail polish colors I use. Normally, I stick to a pale pink or other neutral colors throughout the year, if I wear nail polish at all, but in the summer – I always want to pick it up just a notch.”

Where to buy Darby’s essentials: Hair Sunscreen  I  Bright Nail Polish

Lloyd, Lawyer & All Around Big Deal (Kappa Beautillion)

“My two summertime essentials,” says Lloyd, “[one], a pair of sandals.  It takes a confident man to put on a pair of sandals.  So you have to make sure the sandals are show stopping (because you’ll garner attention) and make sure you have a pedicure (because no one wants to see nasty feet).  Since you can only wear them for 3 months tops, you don’t want to spend a lot of money on them.  My secret:  buy them at the end of the summer when they’re on sale and keep them in the closet for 9 months until its warm again.  My faves are my pair of Bally sandals.  [Two], a pair of aviator sunglasses—I have a round face, so a pair of aviators works best on my head.  My faves are my Fendi aviators.”

Where to buy Lloyd’s essentials: Sandals (similar)  I  Aviators (similar, Ray Ban)

My Picks

Full disclosure – I originally planned to tell you all that a pair of cool sandals and summer maxis are summer essentials.  However, I think Taja and Karma set us straight.  So what are my picks?  First, a cool sunhat.  They are stylish, sexy and super practical.  I’m currently coveting the hat pictured above from Banana Republic.  Second, I SWEAR by Laura Mercier Oil Free Foundation Primer.  This is perfect for the summer because it keeps you from being all gross when the weather is hot.  I mix a dab of primer with my foundation to create my own tinted moisturizer.

Where to buy my essentials: Sunhat  I Foundation Primer

So, what summer essentials would you add to the list?  Weigh in below!

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