Blog Posts by Jennifer Romolini, Shine editor in chief

  • The 10 beauty products our editors could not live without

    I've been exposed to a lot of incredible, expensive (and not so incredible, but still expensive) beauty products in my years as an editor, but most of them I wouldn't actually go out and buy. And like everyone else, I have those drugstore/Sephora/hair salon mistake purchases that I was convinced at the time were going to change my life, but instead just sit in my bathroom mocking me with their uselessness and collecting dust (throwing them away would be admitting defeat).
    This kind of excess bums me out, and lately (it being Earth Month!) I've been thinking about how I want to be less wasteful, and only bring things into my house I will really use and love.
    So I asked some of the Shine staff: What is your very favorite miracle product-the one you couldn't get through the day without?
    Their results are below. As for me, my necessary, desert-island product is...
    Dr. Bronner's Lavender liquid soap This is the one beauty thing that I always need to have around. It's been my favorite

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  • Today in retro beauty: "It takes a little effort to look natural. It takes a little makeup too."


    I'm a little obsessed with these how-to videos from '80s TV actress Donna Mills. When she played Abby Ewing on Knot's Landing (a show my mother and I watched obsessively), Mills wore the most elaborate, multi-colored, over-the-top eye shadow combinations I've ever seen. In this particular segment from her 8-part series, she gives PBS-like (the little happy clouds of cosmetics) instruction on how to create a "natural", "pretty," "outdoor" appearance, you know, like for a picnic-and puts more stuff on her face than I wear in maybe a year.

  • Does anyone care about this? Oscar de la Renta to design Jenna Bush wedding gown

    Chris Gordon/Getty imagesChris Gordon/Getty imagesThere's a story in WWD today about how Jenna Bush has at last chosen a designer for her wedding dress (her wedding is May 10th) and it is oldie-but-goodie Oscar de la Renta (he's also a favorite of her mom and Hillary Clinton). At first I looked at this bit of news and thought, "Wow. I care about this information not at all." But now that I've thought about it long enough to look up a Jenna Bush image on Getty and remember what a boozy, spoiled, disrespectful pain in the ass she's been for the past 8 years and how she's getting some super fancy gown probably for free because she's the daughter of the worst president ever, well, now I realize this story actually irritates me very much. [WWD]

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  • What we loved in magazines this week (and a little of what we didn't)

    The May lady magazines are out! At least some of them (which is a concept I've never understood-even when I worked in magazines-why, say, a May issue comes out in early April, rendering it old and obsolete by the month stamped on its cover. Is it like a mind trick, like you're supposed to think you're getting information early? Perplexing.). Anyway, yesterday I walked to the neighborhood dusty deli/decent newsstand, bought a stack of the new May magazines and read them cover to cover. After the jump, the fashion and beauty highlights you'll like this week, and a few things you probably won't at all.




    image: Just Jaredimage: Just JaredStarting with Marie Claire, I love, love that they have Tina Fey on the cover and I think the interview by Amy Poehler inside is amusing and smart. But I don't understand the cover image. What do you guys think? It's supposed to be Hitchcock-esque, but I miss Fey's glasses, for one, and it's unclear to me why she's wearing a busy trench and disparate jewelry. The photos inside manage a much

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  • More bad news for Project Runway: Nina Garcia and Elle magazine part ways

    Andrew H. Walker/Getty imagesAndrew H. Walker/Getty imagesProject Runway is not having a good week. First the show moves from still-sort-of-hip Bravo to the decidedly crusty Lifetime channel. Next we hear that judge Nina Garcia has left/lost her job as Fashion Director at Elle magazine, a move that will near certainly end her tenure on PR. Will we lose Michael too? How could the show survive without the famous, irritating-yet-addictive Kors' whine? [NY Mag, Jossip]

  • Actual fast, performable-by-normal-humans makeup transformation

    Have you ever had one of those days when something really fun comes up after work and you really, actually want to go but you didn't prepare for it and feel like you look too gross? So instead you head home and order take out and watch TV and feel like "Ugh. Why didn't I just go?" This video from Marie Claire brilliantly shows you how to pull yourself together in less than 5 minutes. Watch the instruction, stock your desk with products and a pair of dressy earrings, and you'll never have that
    why-am-I-a-loser-who-never-goes-out feeling again.

    Related links from Marie Claire:

    25 Beauty Products That Will Change Your Life
    Enter to Win a Giveaway-A-Day
    Virtual Hair Salon: Try on a Hairstyle
    MC Psychic - Ask Advice, Get a Free Reading
    Looking for More Love, Fitness & Career Advice? Subscribe to Marie Claire & Save!

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  • Earth Month means...cool eco-friendly style

    Hayden Harnett Green tote, $27Hayden Harnett Green tote, $27It being Earth Month (that's a thing now, right? I keep hearing about it..If nothing else, Earth Day is April 22), we've been receiving a ton of information about eco-friendly fashion and beauty. Some of it has been OK, some of it great and some of it, well, we wouldn't even wear it on a cross-country trip to Burning Man. After the jump, a linked-out list of our favorites.

    FASHION...
    Kelly Barry's Ruffle Wrap Dress, $120
    It's made out of bamboo jersey by a tiny indie label in San Francisco. It looks sexy on, but not in a slutty way, comes in black and hot pink, and may be the most comfortable garment I've ever worn.

    Stewart + Brown Embroidered Top, $98
    I love the blue of this organic cotton top, the embroidery is fun but not too much and the Dolman sleeves and gathering bodice make it really flattering too.

    Aristocrat Denim jeans, $130-$200
    Everything about this jeans collection is eco-friendly (from the cotton to the dyes to the production) and what's also excellent is-unlike a

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  • INSANELY good Idea: Make your own dresses, without, um, having to make them

    Sometimes an idea comes along in fashion that is so amazing and so exciting that I just want to cry with joy. That was how I felt earlier this week when I heard about Style Shake, the UK website that lets you custom design your own dresses (and tops and soon, pants and skirts) and then makes them for you. I felt so thrilled, in fact, that I called the founder Iris Ben-David in England that very second and asked her how it all came about. "I was getting so tired of never being able to find anything I wanted to wear," she said. "Every time I went shopping I'd try things on and think, 'This would be perfect if it fit better or it was longer, or shorter, or yellow, or just, different.'"

    So, last October, Ben-David created Style Shake, a web retailer that lets you choose the fabric (cotton, silk or linen), color, cut (everything from neckline and sleeves to waist panel and skirt length and design) and trimmings (things like box pleats and belts). Then you plug in your measurements and the

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  • The new Bluefly spin-off "b*fly" equals some truly great deals

    image by bluefly.comimage by bluefly.comUbiquitous online retailer Bluefly (you know, they're on Project Runway and also have those naked woman nothing-to-wear ads) has spawned a mini-site called "b*fly" which carries contemporary casual pieces from lines like Free People, Generra and Joie, all up to 60 percent off normal prices. I wanted to make fun of this-since every time I go on Bluefly.com I feel like, "Oh, WOW, that purse is marked down from $2,640 to $2,144."-but this site is actually really good. It's well-organized by size, style and designer and the discounts, on things I actually want, are deep. I spotted Michael Kors heels for just $59, an adorable belted BCBG Max Azria jacket for $142 and a pretty, ruffly LinQ top for $46. There's also a live chat "personal shopper" feature to help you find exactly what you what you want. [b*fly]

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  • Why everyone should wear a trench coat (and four you might like)

    For the past few weeks, I've been walking around the city repeating the same mantra: "Why is it so f*cking cold? It's April! I'm still wearing my winter coat! This is obscene!"
    Then today, it is 70 degrees in New York. I'm not complaining (because that would be ridiculous) but I am filled with a tiny feeling of anxiety and dread. What if there's no spring at all? What if the weather skips right to summer? What if I never get to wear my spring jacket?
    The thing is-and this might seem like the lamest concept some of you have ever heard of, but-last year I fell in love with a coat. Specifically a trench coat, specifically an inexpensive trench coat from Uniqlo that every fashion-pretentious woman I know thought was super-expensive and said so. "Oh, Jennifer, I love your coat. Is that from Blahbety-Expensive-Designer-Blah?"
    This coat changed everything about my spring wardrobe. It was the perfect length (right at the knee) to wear with dresses and mini-skirts and trousers. It gave me a

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