Blog Posts by Jennifer Romolini, Shine editor in chief

  • Because we're hair obsessed: A new site tells you exactly where to get the perfect cut

    You know how you see a woman on the street and you think, "Oh My God, I love her hair. I want that hair really, really bad." And you almost stalk the woman, but, realize this will be crazy, so instead you just try hard to remember the style. Then, the next time you go to the salon you try to describe this perfect hair and kind of can't and the stylist doesn't know what you want and then you leave with a bad haircut and maybe cry?

    Well, the new site is out to change this entire, coveting-other-people's-haircuts-making-them-your-own insanity. It's an online service which showcases real women with beautiful, modern, fresh-from-the-salon hairstyles. Then it lists where each person went for the cut (locations all over the country) and the name of the stylist who created the 'do. Additionally, a panel of fashion and beauty experts weigh in and explain why each look works.

    This is how the site describes itself:
    "MopShots is the online hairstyle lookbook from Citysearch where

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  • "America's most stylish eight-year-old" makes us feel scared

    GQ.comGQ.comThere's a story up on GQ's website which features Arlo Weiner, the eight-year-old son of Mad Men creator Matt Weiner. Apparently, Arlo is one very stylish young dude-that is, if you consider a poncy, Little Lord Fauntleroy aesthetic the epitome of fashion. The second grader draws style inspiration from old English movies and icons like Frank Sinatra and favors ascots, velvet suits, wearing tuxedos on the beach, and, yes, top hats.

    Of the ensemble at left, he explained: "I have a lot of black outfits these days, so I needed the red ascot to add some color. I love red and black together-they each make the other stand out. I've worn this to school about 12 times."

    Um. I'm not entirely clear on the vibe in California grade schools in 2009, but in my day, any kid wearing short velvet pants, tights, suspenders and basically affecting the look of a big-top circus maestro would've been in serious school yard peril. Yikes.
    Mad Boy

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  • The Scrunchie: It's BAAACCKK....

    Dear readers, I've been holding out on you. I've had pertinent style information for months now, but I have not wanted to share. At first I thought it would just go away--I was protecting you from unnecessary pain. But now the situation has grown grave, and it's time to let the bad '80s hair accessory out of the bag: Ladies, the scrunchie is back.

    And it is back in a big way. I fear for us all. See the evidence above.

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  • Does makeup actually make us beautiful?

    There's a Belgian advertisement floating around the internet right now which depicts what seems like an average woman in a dowdy "before" and a glamorous "after" shot.
    The makeover images are meant to sell eco-friendly cosmetics from a company called Biocorner--the ad's tagline reads: "No need to be ugly to save the planet."

    The woman looks better in picture 2, though that's really not saying much. The female in the before photo is all bag lady'd out, and the after one has been (obviously) heavily Photoshopped.

    I actually usually love a good makeover, but this advertisement gave me pause. It suggests that we need makeup to be beautiful, and that, without it, we are hideously ugly trolls. Though most every woman in my life wears some kind of gloss or blush or shadow or liner, I like to think of this as just part of our personal choices and preferences, not a societal mandate. But when I really examine it, I realize we see fewer and fewer "natural" women in this country and probably

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  • The best websites for designer discounts (fancy clothes and accessories on the cheap-ish)

    Falls wrap halter top on Hautelook (was $220, now $50)Falls wrap halter top on Hautelook (was $220, now $50)We all get the itch to treat ourselves to something luxurious and high-style, but during these trying financial times, with the big R looming like a Goodyear blimp over your front door, this desire makes one feel crazy and foolish. However, there are ways to fulfill a designer fix without totally wrecking your budget. In the past year, members-only discount websites have become increasingly popular-they're basically like virtual sample sales, without the vicious competition or having to get half naked in front of strangers in order to try something on. Some of these sites are great, some are limited, but most offer big ticket items at up to 80 percent savings. This won't help so much for a $1,700 Gucci bag, but it does come in mighty handy for that $300 pair of jeans you've had your eye on, or the $200 dress you loved but couldn't justify the cost.

    We've rounded up four of the most useful online discount destinations on the Web, the ones that tempt us daily, and those with which we've

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  • Why does Michelle Obama always go sleeveless? Also: Who cares?

    Getty ImagesGetty ImagesLast night, Michelle Obama attended the President's address to Congress wearing a sleeveless Narciso Rodriguez dress, one that showcased her much-discussed "well-toned" arms. But, the thing was, it was cold in D.C. last night! Oh My Gerd! And she didn't have any sleeves! Was she or wasn't she cold? Is our first lady obsessed with showing off her arms? Just what kind of message does Mrs. Obama's bare arms send to the nation?

    These are the kinds of questions heating up the blogosphere today. And, sweet lord, they are stupid.

    Over on the New York Times' Caucus blog, a writer wonders if Obama's arms are "a reminder of everything about her we can't see....In two years, she has shown us a great deal of herself, more than most of us would share, and yet right now, we actually don't know that much about her...In a few years, will she still look as confident as she did last night, or will she reach for cover? And is she comfortable as she looks in those skimpy tops, or is she actually

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  • What's your perfume identity?

    I did not smell good this weekend. I was in Vermont with my sister, learning to ski for the first time, and I'd forgotten not only deodorant, but also didn't have anything to spritz on and scent me up like the pretty human I try to be. The experience made me realize that I'm kind of in a perfume funk, I don't have a scent that I like and I don't know what my signature fragrance is nor what it should be.

    For years, I just stumbled into scents. I started with Love's Baby Soft (check out its creepy ad at left-ahhhh! How did anyone let little girls wear this stuff?), moved on to whatever I came across in the drugstore or Body Shop, and finally ended up with the Hilary Duff perfume, because I love her and she once gave it to me for free (I've created a timeline of my life through eau de toilettes, above).

    And that's it. Now I am 35-years-old and I have no idea which fragrance is right for me, which will make me feel sexy and feminine, or what aroma I could handle smelling every day.


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  • Street sign for Mullet Place keeps getting stolen (so many jokes, so little time)

    This is my favorite story of the day. Apparently in Green Bay, Wisconsin, there is a street called Mullet Place, and, though it is not named for the cheesy/skanky "business in the front, party in the back" '80's hairstyle, pranksters keep thieving Mullet Place's street signs.

    According to Fox News, the folks at Greenbay's Public Works department have to replace the signage several times a year, at a cost of $100 per marker, and they are none-too-pleased:

    "We've gone through a lot of Mullet Place signs," said Chris Pirlot of the city Public Works Department. "My only guess is that people are still in love with the '70s and '80s when the mullet haircut was prominent. I don't know."

    The story further explains that there are times when all of the signs on the two-block street are absent, frustrating Mullet Place residents who can't give proper directions to their homes. City officials have attempted to deter vandals by hanging new signs 20 feet above the ground-and, if anyone is caught

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  • Michelle Obama's first black-tie dinner outfit—better than any red-carpet celeb's?

    Getty ImagesGetty ImagesWhile most of us were busy watching the Hugh Jackman schmaltz-fest that was this year's Oscars, the first couple was at home in the White House hosting their first black-tie dinner, an event that welcomed the National Governors Association to Washington. Mrs.Obama wore a silvery-purple, sequined gown by Chicago-born designer Peter Soronen and I have to say, unlike many of the stars we saw on the red carpet, she got it all right. What I continually admire about MO's style is she has an excellent sense of balance. Here, she offsets the sparkly dress and elaborate crystal-and-pearl necklace (by Tom Binns), with simple shoes and scaled back hair and makeup. The effect is elegant, modern, and dressed up, but it doesn't fall into flashy or over-the-top. Seeing outfits like this makes it exciting to anticipate what Michelle Obama will wear and how she'll put it all together-and honestly, for me at least, this might be one of the most entertaining fashion shows of all.

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  • Oscar fashion: The best, the worst, and the most confusing people of the night

    Getty ImagesGetty Images

    The Oscars themselves were crazy last night (seriously, Hugh Jackman with that opening number?), but the clothes were pretty tame. With few exceptions, it appeared as if everyone was a mermaid or wearing their dream wedding dress or attending an '80s prom.

    I watched the show with an outspoken group who had lots of opinions about the outfits. For the night's scariest, most beautiful, and downright befuddling, check out our slideshow above.

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