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Refinery29

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    Welcome toMoney Diaries , where we're tackling what might be the last taboo facing modern working women: money. We're asking millennials how they spend their hard-earned money during a seven-day period — and we're tracking every last dollar.

    Today: a project manager working in manufacturing who makes $80,000 per year and spends some of her money this week on Smartfood popcorn.

    Occupation: Project Manager
    Industry: Manufacturing
    Age: 31
    Location: Berkeley, CA
    Salary: $80,000
    Paycheck Amount (2x/month): $3,333 (with deductions listed below)

    Monthly Expenses
    Monthly Housing Costs: $2,645 (I pay $1,645 for two-bedroom, two-bathroom shared with my girlfriend. We split rent proportional to income.)
    Student Loan Payment: $0 (Student loans are all paid off!)
    Social Security: $206
    Medicare: $48
    California State Income Tax: $196
    California State Disability Insurance: $33
    Health & Life Insurance: $59
    Car Insurance: $145
    Renters Insurance: $14
    Phone: Covered by my employer
    Electricity: $50
    Internet: $24
    Water/Gas: $20
    Storage Unit: $43 (I split this and utilities with my girlfriend.)
    Netflix/HBO GO/Hulu/CrunchyRoll: $0 (We mooch off of friends and parents.)
    Delta Silver Card: $10
    MaxFun Podcast Network: $5
    ACLU Donation: $30
    Savings: I throw in a couple hundred each month…I have around $20,000 in my bank account right now. I'm slowly building my savings back up after a cross-country move.

    Day One

    9 a.m. — Even though it's the weekend, I get up early because I have some commission work I didn't do yesterday, and we're going to a party this afternoon!! I have crackers and Diet Coke for breakfast while I tap away at the computer.

    11:30 a.m. — Finally finish writing my last commission! I offered to write NSFW fanfic commissions to get me through a couple months in between jobs, and it was WAY more popular than I expected. Almost a dozen people requested $40-$50 stories from a set list of video games/anime/TV series. I take half the payment up front, and the rest when it's completed. I stopped taking commissions a month or so ago, but it has still taken me some time to finish. I'll get paid for this one later this week after it goes through some final edits.

    12:30 p.m. — My girlfriend, T., and I put on makeup and make ourselves pretty for the party before piling into the car to go into the city. We drive through McDonalds for a quick snack; I pay for food, and she gets the tolls. We cross the Golden Gate Bridge, and even though I moved to California a few months ago, I'm still not used to the sight of it! $4.90

    2 p.m. — We get to the party! It's a pumpkin beer bracket party where we are ranking a bunch of different beers. I dislike beer and pumpkins, so about eight beers in, I am very ready to ralph. Somehow I power through.

    4 p.m. — When the bracket is finished, we all snack on hummus and pumpkin spice-flavored snacks. Someone at the party mentions that a popular site that hosts fanfic is facing protests from younger fans for allowing "problematic ships." Fiction about content you might not agree with is a tenet of creative freedom (and also NSFW stories), so this goes against my whole brand. I donate a quick $10 to show my support — without them I wouldn't be able to do the commission work I do. Not to get all "kids these days," but teenagers need to do some research into the history of fanfiction (particularly LGBTQ+ and NSFW) and realize that without these sites, there'd be no fandom at all. $10

    7:30 p.m. — After the party, we swing by Safeway to pick up some bottled lemon juice for my nighttime routine. I drink hot water and lemon juice every night, and it's become a craving for me as soon as the sun sets. I've heard it's better to drink in the morning because it helps with digestion, so hopefully it still works later in the day. $4.45

    8 p.m. — Once we get home, T. works on a writing submission of her own that's due tomorrow while I relax. I give it a quick round of editing before she sends it out.

    9:30 p.m. — I do my nighttime skin routine, which is basic AF — Neutrogena cleanser, rose water toner, and Clinique moisturizer and eye cream. We head to sleep early, bloated from beer.

    Daily Total: $19.35

    Day Two

    8 a.m. — Wake up groggy and hop on an early morning conference call that goes an hour over schedule. I eat my toast and drink a Diet Coke while taking notes.

    10 a.m. — FINALLY IT'S OVER. I put on my makeup — a full face because I'm extra like that — and get ready for the work day.

    11 a.m. — I get into the office later than usual after the long phone call. My normal hours fall anywhere between 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. We're a young company, and I'm not held to a strict time table.

    12 p.m. — Things are quiet; we had a huge event last week and half of the staff is at a conference out of town. I type up notes from this morning's meeting and nibble on snacks from the office kitchen.

    1:30 p.m. — We have catered Mexican food today! My forever fave. I recently moved from Texas to live with T., and I'm not used to the difference between California and Texas Mexican food. Luckily the chicken enchiladas today are good. Someone also brought muffins! Like a filthy thief, I squirrel away three in my bag to take home for myself (two pumpkin spice, one chocolate chip.) There's plenty left over, so I'm sure no one will miss them...

    2 p.m. — Even though it's fall, it's still in the 80s for some reason, so I wore a new summer jumpsuit to work. I'm not sure how I feel about it, and it's weird being able to wear super casual stuff to work. I switched to this position after working several years in politics where the dress code was stricter — it's a weird career jump, but I needed a change after the last couple years we've had.

    7:30 p.m. — I head home and quickly cook up some pasta with pre-cooked shredded chicken, cream cheese, lemon pepper, and diced garlic. I call this my "desperation meal" since it is so completely basic, but T. loves it. Somehow she doesn't realize how TERRIBLE it makes my breath smell. Ah, true love.

    8 p.m. — Boss calls me in a panic because he got a flat tire driving the company car. I call AAA and a tow truck gets him back to the office.

    10 p.m. — An eventful night comes to an end, and I head to bed.

    Daily Total: $0

    Day Three

    9 a.m. — Toast and a Diet Coke for breakfast. T. hasn't left yet, so we watch Estée Lalonde's October vlogs. After looking at all her makeup recs, I contemplate restarting my ipsy subscription....

    10:30 a.m. — Get to work and immediately look into new subscription makeup boxes. I finally decide to try Glossybox! It's a little pricey ($21 a month!) but I find some referral codes and set it to three months, so it only comes to about $15 a month. $42.12

    1:30 p.m. — There are still some muffins leftover, so I eat one and play around on my phone.

    2:30 p.m. — AAA arrives to tow the company car to a body shop for new tires. It's a beautiful day and things are slow for me at the office, so I offer to accompany it and use the company credit card to pay.

    3:30 p.m. — I get back to the office, and my boss says he's gonna bounce early, so I head home too. I finish up some work and sprint to my car....Being let out early literally never happens for me!!! I am usually at the office until well after sundown.

    4:30 p.m. — Since I'm home early, I drag T. off the couch to go get burgers at Boss Burger in Albany. We ordered from this place for delivery once before, and it seemed fine, but it's always hard to tell with delivery burgers. When we get there, the place is super noisy and crawling with kids. I pay (we trade off paying for dates) and somehow one soda, one beer, and two small combos are incredibly expensive. We agree that for the price it's not any better than what we could get from Five Guys or In-N-Out — both of which we eat more than is probably healthy. $37.44

    7 p.m. — I finish editing my final commission and send it off. I get paid for the back half of the work (+$21!) and the client really seems to like it. I'm relieved. I felt like I had kind of phoned this one in because my day job has been wild these first few months. Not sure when I'll open commissions again, but I feel very accomplished to be able to do creative work and get paid for it!

    10 p.m. — We put ourselves to bed early like the old people we are.

    Daily Total: $79.56

    Day Four

    8:30 a.m. — Breakfast is Diet Coke and a muffin. I call my new health insurance to start the long pre-authorization set up for the medication I'm on. I was diagnosed with MS a couple years ago, so I have continuing treatment that can cost anywhere between $400 and $11,000 per month if I don't file the right insurance paperwork on time. If everything goes right, the medication is free! If not... well, $11,000 is a lot of money that I don't have. I'm not worried, because I've managed to stockpile a couple months of medication, but I'll be happy when it's all sorted.

    10:30 a.m. — I get to work and make a quick Naturebox order while I have the time, because I have some store credit that will expire soon. I choose two bags of Sriracha roasted cashews. I try not to snack, but when I do, I can inhale a whole package of these in one sitting. $8.44

    2 p.m. — I eat my leftover enchiladas from lunch on Monday. A coworker joins me, which I don't mind because she's very nice, but I did sort of just want to play mobile games on my phone on my break...oh well. I am nice and social like a real human being.

    3:30 p.m. — The car shop calls, and it's time to pick up the company car and its fancy new shoes! It's another beautiful day in California, so I don't mind the little break from work, and I head to the mechanic.

    5 p.m. — I get back to the office, and my boss wants to go home early again! He tells me to take off too, since much of my work hinges on the two of us doing things together.

    5:30 p.m. — I put some roast beef, potatoes, and carrots in the Crock-Pot when I left, so I serve that up for dinner...but I definitely put too much pepper in it. It tastes so bad I can't finish it, but T. gamely says it's good and eats the whole thing. I'm bummed it didn't turn out, but snacking on another muffin helps.

    7 p.m. — T. wants to write, so I settle in on the couch and queue up the first two episodes of Westworld season two... I don't understand ANYTHING that's going on, but I love it. T. gets distracted and watches a little bit, but she doesn't like it, so I am on my own for watching the rest of the season.

    10:30 p.m. — We crawl into bed after a couple episodes. I mention my chest feels really tight and T. says hers does too. We realize all the pepper at dinner probably gave us both acid reflux. Whoops!!

    Daily Total: $8.44

    Day Five

    9:30 a.m. — Diet Coke and toast. I meant to wake up earlier and wash my hair, but I accidentally slept until my emergency alarm!

    2 p.m. — Work is super busy! I sneak away to eat a muffin. The box of them is still chilling in the fridge, so I don't feel bad that I took some home earlier in the week.

    4 p.m. — Things start to calm down, so I work on my Christmas list. It might seem childish, but my family goes ham at Christmas and we buy an obscene amount of presents for each other. I promised I'd get my mom a list of what I want by the end of the month, so I'm just pulling things off my Amazon "save for later" and sending it to her. Capitalism, wow.

    6 p.m. — I still leave the office over an hour earlier than normal...I could get used to this!

    7 p.m. — I get home and we decide to cook up all the leftovers from the past week. There's homemade spaghetti and meat sauce, that lemon chicken pasta, peppery roast beef....and we eat it all!! I show T. some more episodes of Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, but she says it stresses her out. Rebecca is a hot mess. Can't wait for the next season.

    9 p.m. — We are throwing a Drink Talk and Learn (DTL) party this weekend. For anybody who hasn't seen these on social media, a DTL party is where everyone has to make a three-minute presentation on any topic of their choice. It's only Thursday, but a guest has already sent us her presentation! Neither of us have even started...

    10:30 p.m. — Getting into bed, we make a note to finish our presentations tomorrow and practice them — there's a heavy drinking penalty for going over the three-minute mark, haha.

    Daily Total: $0

    Day Six

    8:30 a.m. — I wake up a little before my alarm but can't fall back asleep. I'm so exhausted. T. and I laze around in bed before we leave for our days. I nibble on crackers and Diet Coke for breakfast.

    2 p.m. — For lunch I eat the last of the abandoned fridge muffins....I am officially all muffin-ed out.

    3:30 p.m. — It's Friday and everyone in the office is ready to go home. I bite the bullet and order some hiking boots ($75.75) that I've been looking at since I fell on a hike earlier this month. I also grab some vitamin D gummies ($21.99), clear hair ties ($4.54), and an NYX eyebrow pencil ($6.59). $108.87

    5 p.m. — Boss is leaving work early for a trip, so I offer to drive him to Oakland. We go over work stuff on the drive there, so it's productive, but traffic is awful on the way back. I use the downtime to call my parents. I try to make an effort to speak to them on my drive home whenever possible. I like to tell people that my parents and I talk so often because we have a big common interest — me!

    6:30 p.m. — I finally make it home and cook up some spicy tacos, since T. is at a work dinner. I brown the ground beef, make salsa, and add black beans, green onions, and copious amounts of Tabasco before tossing it all in a tortilla with hot sauce and a little low fat sour cream. I watch another episode of Westworld... god, I love robots.

    8:30 p.m. — T. comes home, interrupting Dolores's latest killing spree, and reminds me that I still need write up my presentation! I hustle and finish up a presentation on an under-appreciated video game series I loved as a kid. I'm excited to present tomorrow, although it's beginning to seem like not as many people will be coming. That's the drawback to throwing a party that comes with homework, lol.

    11 p.m. — I finally finish my presentation! T. is already in bed, so I crawl in and join her. Sooo happy for the weekend at last!

    Daily Total: $108.87

    Day Seven

    7:30 a.m. — Wake up early and cuddle T. until she wakes up, too.

    11 a.m. — T. and I crawl out of bed and go to Target to get party supplies. We end up buying tortilla chips, Smartfood popcorn, Landshark beer, tortillas, orange juice, lemonade, champagne, white wine, and rosé ($135.25). We also pick up some Clorox wipes and other cleaning supplies, two pairs of new pajamas, and home goods including a couple more fake plants. Because um, who can resist Target? I am embarrassed by how high the bill is this time ($73.52). T. pays me back for half, but we put it all on my Target card. $104.39

    2 p.m. — Back home unpacking everything. We realize we definitely bought too much booze for seven people. I make a promise out loud to drink twice as much as normal to make up for it, and T. says I will regret it.

    3 p.m. — We practice our speeches and nibble on some crackers for lunch. I'm under time and T. is over, so we watch BuzzFeed Unsolved and Worth It while tweaking our slides. We also set up the awards for our guests: Best Presentation, Best Dressed, and Best Time Management. We also have a Best Host award (the award figures came in packs of four), which we decide to give to our friend who held the Pumpkin Beer Bracket party rather than splitting it between ourselves.

    5 p.m. — One of our college friends, N., is taking the bus in from Petaluma, and she is WAY earlier than we expected. With wet hair and no makeup, we run to the BART station to pick her up. We also grab some mixers and various sundries that weren't available at Target (green onions, fresh salsa, La Croix, and meat and cheese platters.) T. pays.

    6 p.m. — N. catches up with us as we pregame and put on makeup. I get my hair and makeup done before I have to pick up another friend who came in from the city. He is one of my best friends from high school, and I'm so happy to be living in the same state again. When I greet him, I see he looks so dapper! I feel a little embarrassed to be caught in a t-shirt and sweats, but he says I "look like a celebrity running errands," so I decide to stay in the comfy clothes. Best Dressed award be damned!

    7 p.m. — The party begins! The rest of the guests arrive, and everyone brought snacks but no real dinner. We all catch up, and I'm really excited to see a lot of my longtime friends meeting for the first time. It's always so surreal to introduce friends to each other who have been important figures in your life but at separate times. We slam back some drinks before starting the presentations in earnest.

    8:30 p.m. — The presentations all go well! Everyone is hilarious and so informed. I'm sure we all learned a lot, or at the very least, drank a lot. T. and I go into another room to discuss who wins what awards. Apparently T. says I propositioned her for makeouts, which I don't really remember (thanks, booze), but all our friends agree that sounds like something I'd do.

    11:59 p.m. — It's almost midnight, so time to kick these people out of our house! N. is spending the night so she doesn't have to make the long trek back. We tuck her into the guest bedroom and pour ourselves into bed. An hour later, I wake up feeling sick to my stomach and do not feel great until about 5 a.m.

    Daily Total: $104.39

    Money Diaries are meant to reflect individual women's experiences and do not necessarily reflect Refinery29's point of view. Refinery29 in no way encourages illegal activity or harmful behavior.

    The first step to getting your financial life in order is tracking what you spend — to try on your own, check out our guide to managing your money every day. For more money diaries, click here.

    Have you been working for at least 8 years and seen your salary increase or fluctuate? If so, fill out this form for a chance to be featured on our Salary Story series!

    Have a Money Diary you'd like to share? Right now, in addition to our ongoing diaries, we're looking for potential diarists along the following theme:

    Your Spending In Your State: We want to run one Money Diary from a different state each week. Want to rep your state? Submit here! In particular, we're looking for diaries from Hawaii, Maine, New Mexico, and North Dakota.

    Have questions about how to submit or our publishing process? Read our Money Diaries FAQ doc here: r29.co/mdfaqs

    Like what you see? How about some more R29 goodness, right here?

    These Are The Podcasts Money Diarists Love Listening To

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    Money Diaries provide a unique window into the way women across the country — and the world — save and spend, but they also illuminate the commonalities many of us share in our daily lives, no matter where we live or how much we make per paycheck.

    This is especially apparent when it comes to waking up in the morning and getting to work. Most of us have to deal with less-than-ideal commutes to work — be they by car, subway, or foot. OPs often talk about the ways they pass this time: with music, books, or, most frequently, podcasts.

    From true crime, to Real Housewives gossip, to good ol' interviews, our Money Diarists' podcast tastes run the gamut. Here's a roundup of some of the tried and true favorites our diarists listen to while getting ready in the morning and commuting to work.

    Dr. Death

    In this recent Money Diary, an accounting controller in Madison, WI, listened to Dr. Death while meal prepping. The much-buzzed-about true crime podcast centers around reporting on the Dallas-based neurosurgeon Dr. Christopher Duntsch and his horrifying history of malpractice on the operating table — which led to serious injury for many patients, and, in a few cases, death — for which he's currently serving a life sentence.

    Not for the faint of heart (or stomach). For those who can't get enough, the popular podcast will be getting the TV treatment soon, as well.

    Bad With Money

    This 33-year-old executive assistant wrote in her Money Diary that she listened to Panoply's Bad With Money podcast on her way to work. Hosted by Gaby Dunn, a self-proclaimed finance "deadbeat," this podcast explores personal finance from a feminist and queer lens and includes conversations with activists, politicians, celebrities, and authors. From healthcare to parenthood to cryptocurrency, Bad With Money delves into all kinds of financial issues for anyone who feels like they're bad with money and wants to learn how to be a little bit better with it.

    Call Your Girlfriend

    This technology associate living in Bangalore, India, wrote in her Money Diary that she perused the aisles of a store for almost an hour while listening to Call Your Girlfriend, and this production manager in L.A. wrote in hers that she listens to Call Your Girlfriend while getting ready in the mornings (along with NYT 's The Daily, and My Favorite Murder — a combo she recommends for "anyone who wants to never trust men and check every closet before bed.")

    Call Your Girlfriend, "a podcast for long-distance besties everywhere,"  explores pop culture and politics and seeks to empower and celebrate female friendships.

    Anna Faris is Unqualified

    This sales manager in Boise, ID, wrote in her Money Diary that she made it through a six-mile run with the help of this podcast, wherein Anna Faris interviews celebrities and give callers romantic advice (that she is definitely qualified to give).

    We recommend starting with the Andy Cohen episodes if you're in the mood to laugh.

    My Favorite Murder

    This podcast show is the winner in the most-mentioned-podcast category of Money Diaries. Part true crime and part comedy, My Favorite Murder centers around the recounting of real-life murders and is packed with hilarious commentary by hosts Georgia Hardstark and Karen Kilgariff. The podcast also often features listener hometown crime stories.

    Since its first episode in 2016, MFM has developed a cult following, with a growing fanbase of self-dubbed "Murderinos." This OP is such a die-hard fan of the show that her friend gifted her a merch onesie for her baby. And this Money Diarist loves MFM, too, but said that she has to listen to it in the mornings (never at night) so that she doesn't get nightmares.

    Bitch Sesh

    Real Housewives fans, listen up. For those who don't already know, this podcast breaks down and dishes on all the juiciest drama of the Bravo franchise, with lots of funny commentary (because just when you think the Housewives can't outdo their wild ways of yesterseason, they do, and it needs to be talked about). Hosts Casey Wilson and Danielle Schneider hold live tapings, too, one of which this recent Brooklyn Money Diarist attended.

    As the OP put it, Bitch Sesh is "a breakdown of the Real Housewives franchise, but it is also so much more than that."

    Armchair Expert with Dax Shepard

    This Money Diarist works from home, and listened to Dax Shepard's podcast while transitioning out of work mode into dinnertime. Armchair Expert is full of really meaty and in-depth, no-holds-barred celebrity interviews with a variety of guests from Lauren Graham to Marc Maron. The highlight: the podcast's inaugural episode with Dax's very own wife, Kristen Bell, where the two bicker about Bell's trip to the art supply store (which also, impressively, warmed our hearts).

    Hidden Brain

    Three of our recent Money Diarists listened to this NPR podcast, which uses science and storytelling to explore curiosities about human psychology and behavior.

    Some recent highlights include an episode about the effect of advertisements on the human brain, and a deep-dive into why we deem certain things disgusting. Do like this OP and listen to Hidden Brain on your walk to work. Just don't be surprised if you get so engrossed that you walk past your office building.

    Startup

    This Money Diarist is an aspiring podcast host who listened to Startup in her car while sitting in Dallas traffic in order to glean insight into how to start her own podcast one day. The acclaimed podcast focuses on entrepreneurial life, and was adapted into an ABC sitcom, Alex Inc.

    Women's Work

    This podcast highlights the stories of trailblazing women doing important work in the world. Each episode focuses on a unique woman's story, like this scientist merging STEM with jewelry design.

    This OP said of the Gretchen Rubin episode: "I'm a personal development junkie, so I love learning about habits, happiness, and human nature."

    Like what you see? How about some more R29 goodness, right here?

    A Week In Berkeley, CA, On A $80,000 Salary

    A Week In New York City On A $90,000 Income

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    We always thought of professional-grade makeup brushes as something we would acquire as full-on adults, like fine china or an investment portfolio. After all, what would be the point of splurging on a set of finely-crafted tools that would last forever when we hadn’t yet developed the wherewithal to take care — or even keep track — of such things? And yet, years after college graduation, we’re still using whatever random brushes remain from sets we don't even remember buying. (And for the record, we still haven't purchased a full set of dishes, either.)

    But in a rare case of procrastination paying off, it seems we may have dodged a budget-denting bullet: According to nine professional makeup artists who work with celebrities like Jenna Dewan and Lily Collins, there are plenty of quality brushes to be had for just a few bucks a wand. Some are made with craftsmanship and design in mind (think wooden handles, rose-gold accents, and mermaid motifs). Others are bundled with zippered cases, travel rolls, and organizational trays. Every single one of them is a steal.

    See which bargain brands can be found in the kits of Hollywood makeup artists, and prepare to mark "buy a fancy set of makeup brushes" as a done deal in your grown-ass goals list. With the money you save, tackling that whole investment-portfolio issue might just be next.

    At Refinery29, we’re here to help you navigate this overwhelming world of stuff. All of our market picks are independently selected and curated by the editorial team. If you buy something we link to on our site, Refinery29 may earn commission.

    Think about it, do you actually use more than five different makeup brushes? Probably not. And if you're using the same brushes almost every day, it might be time to restock — which is as easy as walking into Target with a $20 bill. Celebrity makeup artist Jamie Greenberg tells us this box from Eco Tools holds a solid set of brushes, and it's all the everyday makeup-wearer really needs. "These tools are great — and so affordable," she says.



    EcoTools EcoTools stay matte & beautiful kit, $10.99, available at Target

    Looking for a no-fuss, no-brainer brush set to cover all your bases? Makeup artist Mai Quynh, who works with Alison Brie and Katherine Langford, suggests bargain bundles from this brand. "The brushes are very soft, and [this set] has all the basics to do a complete face," Quynh says.



    e.l.f Professional Set of 12 Brushes, $12, available at e.l.f

    Makeup artist Allan Avendano, whose clients include Jenna Dewan and Camila Cabello, says he was initially surprised by how well the brushes from this wallet-friendly brand performed. "The synthetic brushes from NYX are super affordable and have lasted as long as some of my expensive brushes (as long as they’re taken care of and are cleaned regularly)," he says.



    NYX In Your Element Metallics Eye Brush Set, $28, available at Nyx Cosmetics

    "It took me a long time to get on board with the new breed of synthetic brushes — I was a diehard traditional brush girl,” admits makeup artist Fiona Stiles, who counts Gabrielle Union and Lily Collins as clients. "But these dense synthetic brushes really do work in a unique way with makeup, especially liquid or cream products. I have dozens of the Sephora brushes in my kit and I constantly reach for them. The quality is unreal." The brand’s Ready to Roll Brush Set makes a solid starter set at a value, but we can’t get over how cute the multi-colored synthetic bristles are in this mermaid-inspired set.



    Sephora Collection Ocean Crush Fan Brush Set, $25, available at Sephora

    "Morphe Cosmetics has a huge selection of low-cost brushes to choose from in both synthetic and animal hair. My favorites for eyeshadows are the M433 (pointed liner), M510 (pro round blender), and the M167 (oval shadow) brushes,” says Michael Ashton, a makeup artist who works with Adele and Keira Knightley. “They deliver great color payoff when creating any eye look, and the brush shapes allow me to apply product exactly where I need it to be."



    Morphe EYE SLAY, $18, available at Morphe Brushes

    "Sigma has such a great range of options when it comes to brushes, and I’ve had a few of my favorites in my kit for years. The bristles are great quality and super soft,” says Katelin Gan, who works with Noah Cyrus and Sophia Bush. “The brushes hold up so beautifully — plus, they look super chic."



    Sigma Beauty Spot-On Concealer Brush Kit, $39, available at Sigma Beauty

    These brushes are makeup artist Robert Sesnek ’s affordable pick because they feature soft, densely-packed natural-synthetic blend bristles that are easy to clean and work well with cream, liquid and powder makeup. “There's little to no shedding of the bristles and you get all four brushes for under $20,” he says of this set.

    Makeup artist Emily Cheng also gives the brand a nod, saying, "I've had some of their brushes for years and they've held up great."

    Ashton also considers Real Techniques a wallet-friendly go-to brand, particularly for applying foundation and cream-based blushes and highlighters.



    Real Techniques Real Techniques Flawless Base Brush Set, $14.99, available at Target

    A high-quality brush can last more than 10 years and stand up to frequent washes, makeup artist Lisa Aharon points out. When working on clients that include Rachel Brosnahan, she likes options from this brand, which she says offers a good selection of brushes with both synthetic- and natural-hair bristles. "The quality is high, but still affordable," she says. What’s more, double-ended wands help make the most of precious makeup-bag real estate.



    Inglot Cosmetics Travel Brush Set (4 PCS) , $36, available at Inglot Cosmetics

    For those who are pained by the idea of brushes that absorb all the makeup before it even hits skin, this set of silicone applicator tools helps apply liquid and cream concealers and foundations seamlessly. Like silicone makeup sponges, these tools get clean with a quick hit of warm water. But unlike those sponges, the diamond-shaped, handled tools allow for more precise application.



    Pür Pillow Blend Collection, $39, available at Ulta Beauty

    This year, the brushes we've come to know and love got a major face lift. Sam and Nic Chapman, of YouTube's Pixiwoo, revised their face brushes to create these angled, extra-fluffy inventions fit for all your blush, bronzer, and highlighter needs. Although the shape remains consistent throughout the 3-piece set, it's the size that really matters. Our suggestion: Use the tiniest brush for inner corner strobing, the medium to really dig into creamy bronzers, and the biggest for a dewy glow.



    Real Techniques Rebel Edge Trio, $19.98, available at Ulta Beauty

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    The Easy Way To Rock Glitter Eye Makeup For The Holidays

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    While glitter is a year-round requirement in our books, there are certain occasions that call for more sparkle than others: outdoor music festivals filled with flowers and fringe; Halloween parties with full-on '70s disco transformations; and, of course, the entire holiday season itself, when shiny red lips, golden highlighter, and sparkling eyeshadow are about as easy to spot as those seasonal red coffee cups.

    To help you shine a little brighter this year (if you haven't jumped on the glitter train already), we've rounded up our favorite beauty buys from Ulta Beauty that will add a burst of shine with every swipe. From the glistening topcoat that'll amp up any lipstick look to the heavy-metal liner that doesn't compromise on color, here's proof that there's no single way to rock a high-glam glitter vibe. Because ICYMI, feeling a little extra is always fun.

    This rainbow-metallic highlighting kit is a one-way ticket to a beauty look that is, simply put, out of this world. Get a cool, intergalactic glow with any one of the iridescent shades, from lavender-pink to golden yellow.



    Anastasia Beverly Hills Dream Glow Kit, $45, available at Ulta Beauty

    Disco lids, coming right up! This glittery liquid eyeshadow will lend any regular blink a firework-worthy sparkle. The creamy formula (inspired by candied fruit) will create a sugar-sprinkled, foil-like effect.



    Too Faced Tutti Frutti Twinkle Twinkle Liquid Glitter Eyeshadow, $22, available at Ulta Beauty

    If you do a glitter look without using glitter brushes, will it really be as sparkly? TBH, we don't want to risk finding out.



    It Cosmetics Make A Night of IT! Brush Set, $48, available at Ulta Beauty

    You know when snowflakes fall on your lashes in the winter, and it kind of looks amazing? This glitter mascara topcoat will do the same, just without the whole, you know, standing outside in the snow part.



    L'Oréal Voluminous Million Lashes Glitter Mascara Top Coat, $9.99, available at Ulta Beauty

    This clear, pearly topcoat will transform any one of your favorite matte lipsticks into a shiny, '90s gloss. We'll take any extra splash of moisture to fend off chapped, winter lips, too!



    Stila Glitterati Lip Top Coat, $22, available at Ulta Beauty

    Make your skin shine from within with this super-hydrating peel-off mask. You can thank the antioxidant-rich plum oils for the visions of glowing skin dancing in your head.



    Ulta Beauty Collection Sparkling Sugar Plum Hydrating Glitter Peel Off Mask, $3, available at Ulta Beauty

    Copper eyeshadow's been all over the 'gram lately, so add a little extra fuel to that fire with a metallic, sparkling version. The thin-tipped brushes on these allow you to apply the formula however you want: as a simple line or an allover-lid look.



    Urban Decay Starfire Heavy Metal Glitter Liner Trio, $39, available at Ulta Beauty

    Don't forget to give your hair some extra shine this season, too. Blast this finishing spray over any type of look — from a fishtail braid to super-tight curls — to add a veil of light-catching specks.



    Bumble and bumble Bb. Glimmer Finishing Spray, $17, available at Ulta Beauty

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    The future of beauty is here — and you’re invited. Check out the rest of our 2018 Refinery29 Beauty Innovator Awards winners for a full look at the products, brands, and people that are breaking the rules and redefining beauty standards, one lipstick at a time.

    Is there anything more satisfying than touching the wand of a great concealer to the furious red pimple on your chin and watching the disappearing act happen before your eyes? Yes, the perfect foundation is hard to come by, but finding its match in a concealer — the one that melts into skin, magically lending brightness to dark circles and steamrolling bumpy blemishes — is a whole other kind of struggle.

    In an attempt to find the crème de la crème of concealer, our Refinery29 Beauty Innovator Awards testers tried the best formulas to reach the mass market this year. After vigorous swiping, blending, and sweat-soaked dancing (you know, to test staying power), we found one formula we all agreed on. Ahead, the hands-down favorite — and candid reviews of the three runner-up formulas we're pleased to fully endorse.

    At Refinery29, we’re here to help you navigate this overwhelming world of stuff. All of our market picks are independently selected and curated by the editorial team. If you buy something we link to on our site, Refinery29 may earn commission.

    "Apparently I've been sleeping on oil-based concealers. I didn't know if I'd be into the thin, slightly runny consistency until I tried this concealer, and realized the coverage it gives is perfection. It's lightweight, so I don't feel like I've trapped my skin under thick spackle, but heavy enough to provide believable brightness when I swipe it under my eyes." —Channing Hargrove, Fashion Writer



    Josie Maran Vibrancy Argan Oil Full Coverage Concealer Fluid, $28, available at Sephora

    There's a reason they call this stuff 'All Nighter. ' It stuck with me for the duration of a crazy Saturday night — after countless vodka tonics and Hot 100 hits spent on the dance floor — with zero bathroom touch-ups required. Since then, I've used it before every one of those marathon nights that could keep me out until 2 a.m., because I can trust the coverage will never smudge or fade." —Emily Curl, Entertainment Host



    Urban Decay All Nighter Waterproof Full-Coverage Concealer, $29, available at Ulta Beauty

    "Truthfully, at first glance, I had low expectations of this concealer. I love First Aid Beauty, but this formula looked way too thin to cover serious blemishes, like red and irritated pimples. But once I touched the delightfully bendy doe-foot applicator to my skin, I realized how wrong I was. The color blends in seconds, with a soft pat of my fingers or a BeautyBlender, and lasts all day. The coverage is incredible: It hides everything, but is lightweight so it doesn't crease under my eyes, and I never feel like I have concealer slathered all over my face (even though I do)." —Danielle DeJoy, Director of Platform Reporting & Insights



    First Aid Beauty Hello FAB Bendy Avocado Concealer, $22, available at Sephora

    "One light layer of this fluid concealer gave a believable soft-focus brightness to the bluish tint around the inner corners of my eyes, while two thicker layers fully concealed the red, bumpy pimples along my jawline. Considering the versatility, and the fact that the concealer stayed borderline flawless all day — zero flakiness or melting off — right up until my double cleanse, I'm keeping this miracle tube in my permanent rotation." —Megan Decker, Beauty Assistant



    Laura Mercier Flawless Fusion Ultra Longwear Concealer, $28, available at Laura Mercier

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    The Metallic Smoky Eye

    When you're in a beauty rut, it's a little like looking in your closet and seeing absolutely nothing to wear. Sure, you have the bones to create a killer look — a bold liner here, a bottle of texture spray there — but sometimes you just need a boost of inspiration. That's why we created Short Cuts, a series of quick, easy-to-follow videos meant to educate, empower, and excite the beauty nerds in all of us. Whether you're looking to learn something new or to refresh your current routine, there's a Short Cut for you.

    The holiday season is here, and it's time to take out your sparkly dresses, dazzling hair accents, and of course, all your statement glitter makeup. But with great glitter comes great responsibility. One wrong move and it could look like you accidentally shook the 13 Going On 30 magic dollhouse all over your face instead of purposefully planning a trendy eye look. In the video above, we show you how to rock a glittery eye this season — and well into 2019 — because shimmer is fun to wear year-round. Check out the step-by-step breakdown below.

    Step 1. Prime lids and bottom lashline with a neutral eyeshadow. This gives depth to the eyes.

    Step 2. With a dense, flat brush, pat metallic or glitter shadow onto lids and blend any harsh lines with a clean, fluffy eyeshadow brush.

    Step 3. With a small, flat brush, gently dust metallic silver glitter onto your lower lash line.

    Step 4. Apply mascara to the top and bottom lashes.

    Step 5. Optional: With flat liner brush, gently apply dark shadow along your upper lash line for a lil' extra definition.

    Like what you see? Follow Short Cuts on Facebook for more videos.

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    Any kind of subscription service sounds great — free music, streaming TV, weekly meals delivered to your door — until you start considering that pesky monthly fee. $9.99 a month isn't so bad for Spotify Premium, you think. Then you tally up how much that will ding you over the course of a year, and realize a curated, ad-free workout playlist might not be worth $120 in the long run after all.

    Luckily, Target understands both our need for convenience and general aversion to accumulating credit-card debt, which is why the megastore is bringing us the coolest beauty subscription service — without the actual subscription. Each month, Target's beauty team puts together a cute, curated box filled with travel-sized personal-care essentials, along with fun not-so-essentials, and makes the set available to any Target shopper buying in-store or online.

    Ahead, we're breaking down what's inside the just-launched December Beauty Box (which retails for just $7) plus all the other hidden-gem, holiday-specific assorted bundles you can grab along with it — with zero hidden fees to catch you by surprise on your next bank statement.

    At Refinery29, we’re here to help you navigate this overwhelming world of stuff. All of our market picks are independently selected and curated by the editorial team. If you buy something we link to on our site, Refinery29 may earn commission.

    For December, Target launched a fresh new box, curated to add glow to parched skin and hair. Inside, you'll find a hydrating face mask, a Bliss body butter, a zesty coconut and lime-scented bath bomb, an exfoliating pink Himalayan salt scrub, Pond's cold cream, and a reparative shampoo by Dove. The entire 6-piece box is only $7, while supplies last.



    Target Target Beauty Box™ - December Holiday, $7, available at Target

    Cover all the beauty-loving bases with this gift box full of options. For $20, you get an assortment of 12 different products for the 12 days leading up to Christmas, including dry shampoo, exfoliating cleanser, highlighting powder, body scrub, and more.



    Target Target Beauty Box™ - Holiday - Beauty Advent Calendar, $19.98, available at Target

    With five different volumizing sprays inside, this styling set is basically the equivalent of giving the gift of bouncy, full hair — and that's huge.



    Target Target Beauty Box™ - Holiday - Hair Styling Set, $14.99, available at Target

    This skin-care set — specially curated by the good people at Dermstore — includes both Bioderma micellar water and Sunday Riley's Good Genes serum, among other high-end picks, which makes it approximately ten times fancier than its $24 price tag.



    Target Target Beauty Box™ - Holiday - Dermstore Skin Care, $24.99, available at Target

    SheaMoisture released its own fully-stocked box at Target; inside you'll find an amazing hair mask, curl-loving conditioner, and some skin-care extras, to boot.



    Target Target Beauty Box™ - Holiday - Hair Shampoo And Styling, $14.99, available at Target

    This box is a wildcard win: It has a deep conditioner, two different curling creams, and tea-tree essential oil to promote hair growth, plus a set of false lashes.



    Target Target Beauty Box™ - Holiday - Hair Shampoo Styling Set, $14.99, available at Target

    We all know someone who swears by Sunday-night sheet masking. This $14 box will give them five brightening options — that's more than a month of glow.



    Target Target Beauty Box™ - Holiday - Let It Glow, $14.99, available at Target

    Make it easy for your friends and family to start removing toxins from their beauty routine with this five-piece kit, which ditches unnecessary ingredients in favor of a more natural approach.



    Target Target Beauty Box™ - Holiday - Good Clean Fun, $9.99, available at Target

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    Shani Darden moved to Los Angeles in her early 20s with ambitions of becoming a model and ended up as one of Hollywood's most sought-after estheticians instead. Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, Shay Mitchell, Chrissy Teigen, Kelly Rowland, and Jessica Alba all swear by the pro's customized treatments and clinical, no-B.S. approach to skin care.

    Darden launched her first product, the cult-favorite Retinol Reform, in 2013, then followed it up with the Beauty Innovator Award -winning Texture Reform Gentle Resurfacing Serum earlier this year. Now, she's releasing her first comprehensive everyday routine: the Daily Cleansing Serum, Daily Toning Essence, and Daily Oil-Free Moisturizer, a simple yet effective regimen for all skin types.

    Here, Darden talks about the new lineup (available now on her website), the product everyone should be using, and how Huntington-Whiteley had a hand in one of the best skin-care launches of 2018. The following interview was told to Rachel Krause and edited for length and clarity.

    From Dancing To Dermatology

    When I first got to L.A. [trying to make it as a model], I kept getting put in music videos. I didn't actually know how to dance, so one day I just thought, I’m not supposed to be in music videos. I knew I wanted to work in a spa, so I went to school for massage first, then to be an esthetician. From there, I got a job working with a dermatologist, Dr. Erma Benitez, and that changed everything for me. Because I come from that background, my approach is a little more clinical. That's why I launched Retinol Reform: I was seeing so many people who used stronger retinols, and their skin looked amazing, but it can take you months to get your skin to where it's not peeling and sensitive and flaky. I thought, I have to make a better retinol.

    How Texture Reform Was Born

    Texture Reform, on the other hand, was a complete accident. Using a pure retinol is really hard to keep stable, so I thought I'd try to use retinyl palmitate, which is the gentlest form of it — you get the same results, but it takes a little longer. I played around with the formula forever with the lab, and then I actually gave it to Rosie [Huntington-Whiteley] to try. She fell in love with it — I kept having to get it from the lab to make sure she always had it. She said, "You can't not put this product out."

    The Light Touch

    My in-office treatments are customized, but all of my clients get LED light. Red light boosts collagen in the skin on a different level, and it makes such a difference. There’s also blue light, if you have acne. Obviously the [in-office] Déesse Pro mask is super easy to use, but it’s also a lot of money. The handheld versions really work. I love LightStim the most — you see the results and it’s been FDA-cleared, but you have to put the time in and use it every day.

    The One Thing You Must Use

    As for my new launches, I wanted a really gentle cleanser that could remove makeup without stripping the skin, and had a good lather that feels really clean. The toner is the love of my life: It has sake water in it, which brightens the skin, and another ingredient called sebocytine, which reduces oil production. Every skin type can use it; it really makes your skin feel great and you still feel hydrated while also [controlling] oil.

    I wanted to keep them affordable. I’m not a person who could put out a $500 moisturizer — it just gets to be silly. They’re still not affordable for everyone, but it’s a good price point for the ingredients that are in them. I always say that if you have nothing else, you’d just have to have a really good retinol, and then everything else could be simple.

    At Refinery29, we’re here to help you navigate this overwhelming world of stuff. All of our market picks are independently selected and curated by the editorial team. If you buy something we link to on our site, Refinery29 may earn commission.

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    If you're planning on banging out some early holiday shopping this coming weekend — before December 23rd when you'll inevitably reach the point of defeat while being elbowed in a painfully long checkout line at your third toy store stop — we salute your foresight.

    We also suggest you start at Target because the megastore has stocked its shelves with a ton of new seasonal goodies; the best of which can be found in the Beauty & Personal Care aisles. There, you'll find shelves filled with holiday gift sets of all varieties — boxes of body lotion, chic sparkly hair clips, all the bath lovers' essentials — and they're all under $15.

    Check out our must-haves ahead, and get them this weekend — before they sell out and you're forced to schlep around town to find the perfect lip gloss set for your 12-year-old cousin.

    At Refinery29, we’re here to help you navigate this overwhelming world of stuff. All of our market picks are independently selected and curated by the editorial team. If you buy something we link to on our site, Refinery29 may earn commission.

    Glitter nail polish is trending right now. Not sure what shade to try? Grab this $14 advent calendar, and you'll get twelve, fun-sized sparkly polish bottles all housed in a cutesy pop-out gift box.



    Defy & Inspire Defy & Inspire 12 Days of Nail Color Nail Polish Set, $14.99, available at Target

    This Bliss body butter trio is an easy pick because the formula is rich and moisturizing, plus the scents are universally enjoyable, whether you're into the clean, fresh scent of lemon and sage, an energizing grapefruit and aloe blend, or prefer a fragrance-free formulation.



    Bliss Bliss Facial Skincare Sets - 3ct, $9.99, available at Target

    Kristin Ess is dropping adorable gift sets this again season, all include one of her best-selling styling products paired with a fun holiday accessories, like these sparkly hair pins.



    Kristin Ess Temporary Rose Gold Tint + Celestial Bobby Pins, $14, available at Target

    — PAID —

    This Burt's Bees gift set is basically every beauty-lover's dream. Featuring four skin-care essentials — the intense hydration day lotion with clary sage, the facial cleansing oil with ultra-moisturizing coconut and argan oils, the keep-one-in-every-purse conditioning lip balm, and the facial oil featuring rosehip seed extract — it's basically all you need for your a.m. and p.m. routine.



    Burt's Bees® Naturally Nurtured Face Care Gift Set, $12.99, available at Target

    Who doesn't love a mini fragrance rollerball set? They're fun, easy to stick in the side pocket of your purse to pull out when you're standing on the stuffy subway platform.



    Good Chemistry Good Chemistry Rollerball Fragrance Gift Set - 3pc, $14.99, available at Target

    Your 12-year-old cousin will flip over this huge lip gloss kit — and it's only a $12 hit to your bank account.



    Target Beauty Vanilla Fragranced Lip Gloss 18ct, $12, available at Target

    You can't go wrong gifting fresh makeup brushes.



    Eco Tools EcoTools Radiant Complexion Beauty Brush Kit - 4pc, $14.99, available at Target

    Holiday hangovers will run on high from now through January, so why not gift your roommate a de-puffing treatment? You can both wear these squishy gold eye patches around the apartment Sunday morning while you're nursing your headache from the couch.



    My Spa Life Everyday Indulgences Gold Hydrogel Eye Strips, $2, available at Target

    We're already fully onboard with the Pixi pencil eyeliner formula because it runs along the lash line like a smooth and silky dream. So, when we can gift a three pack of the most gorgeous and wearable shades — black noir, shimmery copper, and a soft pink — it's kind of a no-brainer.



    Pixi Pixi Cosmetic Set Medium - 0.09oz, $14, available at Target

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    Still thinking about your last 29Rooms experience? We don't blame you. There's nothing quite like immersing yourself in a world of culture, creativity, and cause. The good news is, we're taking the interactive playground on the road again, and this time we're headed back to Los Angeles. From December 5 to 9, you can check out our 29Rooms Expand Your Reality theme, where we inspire bold thinking, unlock new passions, and help unleash your imagination. Our favorite time to experience the magic? The Party After Dark sessions, where guests have the opportunity to dance, create, and explore without the crowds — plus, access to a whimsical bar experience with Smirnoff * vodka cocktails (like peppermint punch and pomegranate Moscow mules) and a drag performance.

    Even if you can't make it to a Party After Dark session, there are plenty of other sessions and 29 rooms to explore. Step on stage with Amazon Prime Video's The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, see your name in lights, and find your voice; head to Pantene 's room to enter the "Play Rescue Reset" journey and strike a pose in front of a glistening fountain; or check out the phone booth from Plan B One-Step, where you can listen to inspiring stories from real women. Your transformative 29Rooms experience is almost here. Add the dates to your GoogleCal, clear the photo storage on your phone, and remember to bring your Mastercard to experience the virtual Fred Segal Holiday Shop. You can browse and buy 29 exclusive, curated Fred Segal gifts for everyone on your list this holiday season — just like you’re in the store. We'll see you there, Angelenos.

    When: December 5 to 9, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., 3 to 6 p.m., and 7 to 10 p.m.

    Where: The Reef, 1933 South Broadway, Los Angeles, CA

    *SMIRNOFF cocktails will be served December 5, 6, 7, 8, and 9 in the Party After Dark sessions from 7 to 10 p.m. only. Please sip responsibly. The Smirnoff Co., Norwalk, CT.

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    It's easy to feel overwhelmed shopping on Amazon. Not that we don't do it all the time (because free two-day shipping is the bomb), but you can't help but let out a heavy groan when you realize you're almost out of an essential — say, shampoo — and a simple Prime search pulls up 351 pages of what seems like every bottle ever made.

    Fret not, because we're here to help. After skimming through thousands of handmade soaps and razor-refill boxes, we compiled the best beauty deals available on Amazon right now. From fresh new finds, like a lash growth serum that's actually affordable, to can't beat deals, like 30% off a Sonicare electric toothbrush, we've got every winter beauty essential to add to your next Prime order.

    Scroll through all the goods ahead, and add them straight to your cart, zero filtering required.

    At Refinery29, we’re here to help you navigate this overwhelming world of stuff. All of our market picks are independently selected and curated by the editorial team. If you buy something we link to on our site, Refinery29 may earn commission.

    If you've been debating upgrading to a fancy electric toothbrush — to show off a pearly white smile at all your upcoming holiday parties — let this 30% off sale be the push you need to treat yourself.



    Philips Sonicare Plaque Control Rechargeable Electric Toothbrush, $50.85, available at Amazon

    A winner of this year's Refinery29 Beauty Innovator Awards, this idiot-proof, bi-directional razor is just $4 and change when you grab it on Amazon right now. That's 72% below its retail price.



    Schick Schick Intuition f.a.b. Razor, $4.28, available at Amazon

    You can't go wrong picking up a discounted bottle of this happy pink nail polish for when your holiday manicure inevitably chips.



    Essie Nail Polish in Cascade Cool, $7.65, available at Amazon

    If you love scented lotions, you'll want to grab The Body Shop's best-selling strawberry body butter two-pack — including a small and jumbo size — for just $6 this week.



    The Body Shop Strawberry Festive Bauble Gift Set, $6.42, available at Amazon

    Ever wonder how the Victoria's Secret angels get that full-body glow in the middle of winter? The secret: this body lotion. Like a BB cream for your legs and arms, this tinted cream smooths out lines and adds a tan that's just natural enough to make people ask if you went on vacation.



    Vita Liberata Vita Liberata Body Blur Instant HD Skin Finish, $36, available at Amazon

    If you're always running out of moisturizer and you're partial to a refreshing gel-cream texture that melts into your skin (as opposed to anything white and heavy), this $13 two-pack was made for you.



    Garnier Garnier SkinActive Moisture Rescue Face Moisturizer, $13.24, available at Amazon

    When you do the math, this luxe 12-pack of Parisian hand cream is an awesome deal. Each chic aluminum tube tallies up to around $4, and it made Oprah's annual gift list.



    La Chatelaine Deluxe 12 Hand Cream Gift Set, $54.4, available at Amazon

    Wrap your feet in this cocoon of lactic acid and exfoliating fruit enzymes, and when you unwrap them, your heels with be baby soft.



    BeaLuz BeaLuz Exfoliating Foot Peel Mask, $15.99, available at Amazon

    Throw away all those scrubs that leave grimy coffee-grounds residue along the rim of your bathtub, and replace them with this little glass jar packed with pink Himalayan sea salt. It sloughs away dead skin, smells like aromatherapy and sugared almonds, and requires zero clean-up, to boot.



    Majestic Pure Himalayan Salt Body Scrub with Lychee Essential Oil, $12.98, available at Amazon

    You can use this deep-cleansing bar soap on your face and body. The mud additive pulls out any dirt and oil trapped in your pores, leaving you with clean, fresh skin.



    AHAVA AHAVA Dead Sea Purifying Mud Soap, 3.4 oz., $7, available at Amazon

    If there was ever a right time to invest in an aromatherapy oil diffuser/humidifier with a color-changing LED light display, it's when you can get it on sale.



    URPOWER Wood Grain Ultrasonic Aromatherapy Oil Diffuser , $19.98, available at Amazon

    Whether you're going for a dramatic cat-eye or a sexy, smudged kitten flick, this felt-tip liquid liner delivers, which is why it's the #1 new release in Amazon's eyeliner product category.



    Maybelline Eyestudio Master Precise All Day Liquid Eyeliner Makeup, $6.94, available at Amazon

    If you're in need of a new Clarisonic — like, you can't remember the last time you replaced your well-worn brush head — shop it at Amazon, and it'll be at your doorstep in two days.



    Clarisonic NEW Mia Prima 1-Speed Sonic Cleansing Face Brush, $84, available at Amazon

    Typically, this luxe night cream (or night balm, rather) retails for $19.99 — and that's honestly a steal, as it's packed with nourishing Manuka honey, which leaves skin softer, firmer, and plumper over time. Buy it on Prime and the price drops to just $15.



    L'Oreal Paris Age Perfect Hydra-Nutrition Night Balm Face Moisturizer, $14.99, available at Amazon

    Curious about face mask sticks? This charcoal one is just as effective as a regular potted clay mask, minus the crusty mess that comes with application.



    Olay Clay Charcoal Facial Mask Stick, $9.94, available at Amazon

    Lash-boosting serums can be pricey — we're talking around $50 or so — and we're willing to splurge for naturally long, fluttery lashes. But now you can reap the benefits of stronger, shinier, healthier eyelashes for the same price as a tube of Great Lash mascara from CVS.



    Maybelline Lash Sensational Boosting Eyelash Serum, $11.99, available at Amazon

    Maybelline Lash Sensational Boosting Eyelash Serum, $9.48, available at Amazon

    Like the tried-and-true Natural Glow moisturizer without the chemical-y self-tanner smell, this brand-new body lotion hydrates your legs, arms, and shoulders, and leaves a luminous soft-glow sheen.



    Jergens Jergens Brilliance Skin Illuminating Body Moisturizer, $9.4, available at Amazon

    Stila's Glitter & Glow eyeshadow is arguably the world's best liquid shadow if you're looking for a shimmery lid that will stay put all night long (trust us, Beyoncé's makeup artist uses it). And when you can get a three-pack of the most wearable shades (pale gold, silver, and copper) for $25 — well, you go right ahead and add it to your cart.



    Stila Eye Shadow Set [3D Dazzle Glitter and Glow Liquid], $25, available at Amazon

    More than 600 Amazon shoppers have reviewed the Color Wow Dream Coat — a color-protecting spray that cuts the frizz out of dry, damaged hair — and most everyone gives it five bright-yellow stars.



    Color Wow Dream Coat Supernatural Spray, $28, available at Amazon

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    More is more this party season: with shimmering sequins, Quality Street colors, and '80s prom dresses, there’s no room for wallflowers. We shot our favorite after-dark pieces at London’s glittering Moth Club, from the statement-making gold bag to the puff-sleeved prom dress.

    Soirée season has arrived – we’ll see you on the dance floor.

    Lauren wears Warehouse Dress, Loeffler Randall Shoes
    Leah wears Rixo Dress, Topshop Heels; Amy wears Warehouse Top & Skirt, Mango Bag, Office Heels; Lauren as before

    It wouldn’t be a party without sequins, but this season sparkle goes next-level thanks to the designs of Halpern, Ashish, and Balmain, who all sent head-to-toe sequin looks down fall 2018's runways. Our star-spangled highlights are Rixo x Laura Jackson’s chevron striped number, a tea dress for after dark; Warehouse’s fringed co-ord, a modern take on the '20s flapper; and (again from Warehouse) a backless silver gown dripping in contemporary glamour.

    Lauren wears Isa Arfen Dress, Mango Bag, Loeffler Randall Heels; Amy wears Rotate Dress, The Vampire’s Wife Bag, Topshop Heels

    Forget the LBD – this season, we’ve fallen for the '80s prom dress. Would Cyndi Lauper or Madonna circa Desperately Seeking Susan wear it? If it's a yes, then you’re on the right track. Isa Arfen’s Bow Wow dress is at the top of our wish list – a larger than life blue bow is the ultimate party starter – while Danish brand Rotate has made the sweetest fuchsia mini. From pouffy sleeves to balloon skirts, exaggerated proportions are key.

    Thought your only option was a party dress? Think again: the co-ord is just as thrilling and comes in a plethora of fabrics and styles this season. Channel Bianca Jagger at Studio 54 with Alberta Ferretti’s mix-and-match metallic two-piece, complete with show-stopping details like the wide leg and pussybow blouse. Self-Portrait has suiting nailed, while Kitri’s ultra violet jacquard co-ord is as comfy as it is sumptuous – pair with gold accessories for a festive color clash.

    It’s all business in the front and party in the back with some dresses. Topshop’s liquid gold slip requires one last glance over the shoulder before hitting the dance floor, while Gucci’s aquamarine dress is scene-stealing from all angles.

    There’s only one plus-one we want this party season: a statement bag that’s as Instagrammable as the rest of our get-up. Shrimps’ beaded Antonia bag now has the Midas touch in luxurious gold, while Rejina Pyo’s boxy number sets the bar high. For these accessories, there’s no RSVP required.

    Shrimps Bag 
    Amy wears Warehouse Top, New Look Earrings

    If you didn’t get the memo, animal print came back in a big way this year, and none more so than glam rock’s favorite: snakeskin. Pay homage to the Rolling Stones and don a pair of python trousers, best teamed with tactile velvet and tailored cuts. The '70s never felt so fresh.

    Amy wears ASOS Heels, MSGM Trousers, Frame Blazer 

    Remember: Quality Street colors are inspiring our favorite dresses this festive season. Gucci’s shimmering electric blue dress, with oversized bows and a thigh-high hemline, looks good enough to eat, while Isa Arfen’s ruched and gathered off-the-shoulder piece is a caramel delight. The brighter the better here; extra points for matching your eyeshadow to your outfit.

    Lauren wears Isa Arfen Dress, Anthropologie Hair Slides, Amy wears Gucci Dress, New Look Earrings, Gucci Sunglasses

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    Welcome toMoney Diaries , where we're tackling what might be the last taboo facing modern working women: money. We're asking millennials how they spend their hard-earned money during a seven-day period — and we're tracking every last dollar.

    Today: an academic librarian working in higher education who makes $63,000 per year spends some of her money this week on the Charlie Brown Christmas vinyl.

    Occupation: Academic Librarian
    Industry: Higher Education
    Age: 27
    Location: New Haven, CT
    Salary: $63,000
    Paycheck Amount (Monthly): $3,367.28

    Monthly Expenses
    Mortgage: $1,350 plus an extra $100 to the principle each month — paid from my joint account with my fiancé. We bought a home this summer.
    Student Loan Payment: $280 plus extra $70 to principle
    Credit Cards: I am digging out of some credit card debt that I accumulated in graduate school and from moving across the country for my job, so I pay a couple hundred dollars a month.
    Internet: $40
    Commuter Train Pass: $100 pre-tax
    Streaming Services: We're on my fiancé's parents' HBO Go and Netflix accounts and our friend's Sling account (so we can watch NFL RedZone).
    Phone: My parents still pay for my phone.
    Car: My car is paid off, and I pay $492.10 for car insurance twice per year.
    Savings: 10% of my paycheck goes to a joint savings account with my fiancé.
    403b: 10% of my pre-tax paycheck

    Day One

    8 a.m. — I oversleep and miss my train, so I drive and pay to park at work. Not the end of the world — I have to do some shopping after work anyway, since we're hosting people for Thanksgiving. The meter expiring at 1 p.m. means I'll be taking an unanticipated but fortuitous half day at work. $5.75

    1 p.m. — See ya next week, work! Before running my errands, I stop at Panera for a bagel and drink. $5.50

    1:30 p.m. — Super productive Target run. I pick up some last-minute breakfast food since we're hosting guests until Friday, a table runner, and some Pepto Bismol to prep for the Thanksgiving feast we're cooking up. $27.44

    8 p.m. — Some of our guests have arrived! They sat in horrible traffic from Boston to drive down, so we treat them to some New Haven-style apizza (yes — there's an a!) for dinner. $36.80

    Daily Total: $75.49

    Day Two

    9 a.m. — We wake up a little hungover after a spirited evening of beer tasting and board games. We eat cold, leftover pizza for Thanksgiving breakfast. Definitely grateful there are leftovers.

    1:45 p.m. — The rest of our guests have arrived! Two of our guests prepare a mouth-watering spread of snacks to tide us over until the big meal, including baked brie and chicken wings. The wine is flowing. It's going to be a good day. We play Dominion.

    6 p.m. — We cook dinner for everybody. My fiancé got a grocery store gift card at work as a holiday bonus, so we were able to get pretty much everything (turkey, green bean casserole, potatoes, cranberries — the works) for free! Everybody is pretty drunk at this point and we play Exploding Kittens, watch Bring It On, and call it a night around 11:30 p.m.

    Daily Total: $0

    Day Three

    10 a.m. — We eat the eggs I picked up at Target a few days ago scrambled with Thanksgiving leftovers. It's divine. Some of our guests leave to try to hit the Black Friday sales before they have to return their rental car.

    12 p.m. — We head to our favorite record store since they're having a big sale. We leave with three new records (The New Mastersounds, Woods, and Whitney) as well as some $0.50 Christmas records. Traffic is a little crazy, so we don't do any other shopping. $44.73

    4 p.m. — While we kill time before our friends' train back to NYC, we hit up a new brewery for a couple hours. We each have two beers, split some pretzels, and play Cards Against Humanity. Our guests picked up the tab out of gratitude for us hosting Thanksgiving. Any time!

    5:30 p.m. — We hit up the grocery store for some Hawaiian rolls and cheese to make sandwiches with our leftover turkey and ham. We also pick up some onion rings and settle in for a low-key night at home watching Netflix and cleaning up the aftermath of hosting a full house. $17.36

    Daily Total: $62.09

    Day Four

    12:30 p.m. — We love going to craft fairs and finding cool Christmas gifts for our family and friends, so we hit up a craft fair at a brewery after a slow morning and more leftovers. Unfortunately, the crafts aren't great, so we each have a beer, cut our losses, and leave. $13

    1:30 p.m. — The CT Brewers Guild has a fun brewery passport program where you collect stamps for prizes. Since we're already in the area, we pop into a brewery in Hartford that we've never been to before and each get a drink. $14

    2:30 p.m. — Well...today is getting crazy. After the second beer, I'm really into the idea of getting more beer passport stamps, so we go to yet another brewery. Because I ride the new commuter train, I get my first beer for free! However, we end up buying two four packs of cans and a metal tacker sign to add to our collection. $58.60

    6:30 p.m. — We drive home and hang out with the dog for a little bit before heading out to dinner. We rarely eat out, so this is a treat. We split a pizza and some fancy short rib fries. I don't drink anything but water, since we had such a crazy afternoon. $34.82

    8:15 p.m. — Continuing date night, we head to the movies to see the Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald. We get popcorn and a soda to share. I've missed going to the movies since we canceled MoviePass, so this is super fun even though the movie is just okay. $35

    Daily Total: $155.42

    Day Five

    10 a.m. — There's a state park about 45 minutes away we've been wanting to check out, so we gas up the car. The hike is amazing! The dog has a great time romping around the woods and we enjoy a waterfall, poorly marked trails, and scenic views. Definitely coming back here in the spring when everything is alive again! We skipped breakfast, so we have some snacks on the trail. $30

    1 p.m. — Continuing the beer passport madness, we split a flight of beers on the way home from the hike at a brewery we've never been to before! $11

    2 p.m. — We settle into an afternoon watching NFL RedZone on our friend's Sling account. We're in a fantasy football league together, and things are getting pretty competitive this close to the playoffs! I work on some crafting projects for an upcoming fair I'm selling at, and we continue eating Thanksgiving leftovers. They're finally almost gone.

    Daily Total: $41

    Day Six

    8 a.m. — I'm back into my bike-to-train commute routine this morning. It's Cyber Monday and I don't have any meetings, so so I peruse the deals at work and end up buying fancy Christmas plates/bowls/etc. for my mom from Williams-Sonoma and a bunch of 70% off picture and poster frames from Michaels. $230

    12:30 p.m. — I'm pretty hungry come lunchtime and am tempted to buy something, but I stick to my super old macaroni and cheese leftovers from last week.

    5:30 p.m. — We go to Kohl's to pick up the Charlie Brown Christmas vinyl. (Weird place to get vinyl, right? But it was sold out everywhere else.) I buy a new pair of jeans, too, since they're on sale and mine are all falling apart. $34.71

    7 p.m. — My fiancé made turkey stock from the Thanksgiving turkey, so we add all the random vegetables in the fridge to the pot to make a pretty tasty soup. And we eat really stale leftover bread. At least the leftover pie is still good?

    11 p.m. — Snapfish is having a wild sale, so I make my future mother-in-law a photo calendar with pictures of our dog. I did this last year, and it was such a hit that it's expected pretty much in perpetuity now. $13.71

    Daily Total: $278.42

    Day Seven

    8:15 a.m. — Go to get blood drawn. (I have to do this once a week because of a medication I'm on.) On my way back to work, I pick up a coffee because it just feels like it's going to be a long day. $3

    9:30 a.m. — Ticketmaster is having a sale! I pick up concert tickets for New Year's Eve in NYC and am thrilled to have saved $35. $53

    12:30 p.m. — My predictions were right that this would be a long day, so I buy a half sandwich and tip $1. It's extremely satisfying. $5

    5:30 p.m. — We go to Michaels to pick up my order from yesterday, and end up getting a bunch of shatterproof Christmas ornaments to hang up on our tree outside, too. $21

    6:15 p.m. — For some reason we're craving hot dogs for dinner, so we pick up hot dogs and buns at the grocery store before heading home for an evening of crafting projects and watching The Great British Baking Show. $7.88

    Daily Total: $89.88

    Money Diaries are meant to reflect individual women's experiences and do not necessarily reflect Refinery29's point of view. Refinery29 in no way encourages illegal activity or harmful behavior.

    The first step to getting your financial life in order is tracking what you spend — to try on your own, check out our guide to managing your money every day. For more money diaries, click here.

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    Have questions about how to submit or our publishing process? Read our Money Diaries FAQ doc here: r29.co/mdfaqs

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    Photographed by Julia Robbs.

    We take our bathroom business very seriously. Honestly, sometimes it's the most relaxing part of the day, which is why we protect it so fiercely — and why we get so worried when something is off. Like, you know, when it suddenly burns with the fire of a thousand Sriracha bottles every time you pee.

    If it's any comfort, painful urination is exceedingly common. How often do women ask doctors about this particular symptom? " All the time," says Raquel B. Dardik, MD, an ob/gyn at NYU Langone Medical Center. So there you go — you're far from alone, and there's no need to be embarrassed.

    But just because it's common doesn't mean it's always simple to diagnose. That's partly because the burning sensation could originate from a variety of places, both internal (like your bladder) or external (the skin around your vagina). "When you don’t have the very classic symptoms of a bladder infection [e.g. feeling like you have to pee all the time], it’s hard to tell if it’s the bladder or the vaginal area that's causing pain," Dr. Dardik says. Essentially any dry or irritated skin around your vagina can become inflamed when it comes into contact with urine because "you’re putting acid on skin that’s irritated."

    So if your bathroom stall texts are coming with a few more fire emoji these days, you'll want to check in with your doctor to figure out what's really going on. Here are a few of the culprits she might pinpoint:

    Urinary Tract Infection
    The most common cause of that burning sensation is a UTI. These occur when bacteria from outside of your body make it to your bladder, causing symptoms such as abdominal pain, a frequent need to pee, and, yes, burning when you go to the bathroom.

    If you've had one before, you're probably already well-attuned to those symptoms — and you know when you're getting another one. But your doctor will still probably want to see you in her office before prescribing a round of antibiotics.

    "When you treat a UTI, you’re guessing which bacteria is in there, which means you’re guessing which antibiotic will work," explains Dr. Dardik. So if you get a prescription without getting your urine tested and you're not feeling better in a few days, your doctor won't know if it's because she gave you the wrong kind of antibiotic or because you don't really have a UTI. "You have no idea what you treated in the first place," she says. So, it may be a(n extra) pain to get an appointment with your doc, but you'll be glad you did it.

    STIs
    "Anything that breaks the integrity of the skin will cause burning when you urinate," says Dr. Dardik. That means some STIs can definitely cause pain. If you're in the middle of a herpes outbreak, for instance, you may have sores that will be particularly sensitive to urine. Chlamydia and gonorrhea are also known to cause painful peeing.

    Skin Irritation
    Again, anything that messes with the skin around your vaginal and urethral areas can cause painful, burning urination. And that's a long list of possibilities: Burning when you pee may be a result of a yeast infection, which causes irritation and itchiness (read: more irritation) around the vagina and vulva. You might also feel that pain after particularly rough intercourse. Even a change in your laundry detergent could irritate your skin. Menopause can also cause drying of the vaginal area.

    So as annoying as it is, get to that doc — and make your bathroom visits great again.

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    November ended, but December's brought with it an entirely new lineup of simmering holiday sales. As we countdown to the new year, we'll still be able to steadily snag discounts on everything from gifting goods to fashion finds and big home buys. And for the next few weeks, we've got Wayfair’s 12 Days of Deals sale high on our shop-list.

    The extensive home site is currently offering up to 70% off (in addition to a slew of closeout steals) on a wide range of furniture and decor goods through December 13 — with dedicated daily deals on specialty categories like top vacuums and kitchen brands. To stay on top of the best buys as they roll out, we'll be sifting through the top-reviewed goods every 24-hours throughout the sale's 12-day run. Scroll ahead to shop today's batch of home must-haves for well under full price and with well over 4-star ratings.

    At Refinery29, we’re here to help you navigate this overwhelming world of stuff. All of our market picks are independently selected and curated by the editorial team. If you buy something we link to on our site, Refinery29 may earn commission.

    Good: MCM Night Stand
    Deal: 36% Off
    This mid-century modern nightstand is constructed with smooth white and wood paneling and rose gold, powder-coated handles.

    Reviews: 4.4 out of 5 stars on Wayfair — ranging from, "Dresser is beautiful..." to, "We love it! We are very satisfied with the quality. Its sturdy and looks nice."



    George Oliver Vitiello 2 Drawer Nightstand, $161.99, available at Wayfair

    Good: Sherpa Throw Blanket
    Deal: 22% Off
    Soften your winter space with a cloud-like sherpa blanket made from cozy faux fur.

    Reviews: 4.8 out of 5 stars on Wayfair — "The large size of this blanket is HUGE and a good deal for the price. You can wrap you self all up in it and be completely cozy. SO soft and plush and luxurious."



    Willa Arlo Interiors Basile Faux Fur with Sherpa Throw Blanket, $48.99, available at Wayfair

    Good: Woven Area Rug
    Deal: 83% Off
    This rich blue and stain resistant area rug is machine-woven in Turkey with a durable 10% polypropylene blend.

    Reviews: 4.6 out of 5 stars with over 200 5-star reviews on Wayfair — ranging from, "It's soft, beautiful and exactly what we were looking for in our new apartment." to, "This rug is absolutely gorgeous...I put it down in my living room and it just popped."



    Langley Street Melvin Woven Area Rug (5' x 7'6''), $73.83, available at Wayfair

    Good: Memory Foam Mattress
    Deal: 58% Off
    Crafted with a patented, “pressure-relief system,” this multi-layer foam mattress is designed to increase circulation and receive stress on your body's pressure points.

    Reviews: 4.7 out of 5 stars with over 4,000 5-star reviews on Wayfair — ranging from, "Best sleep ever!" to, "I can't believe it's this good."



    Alwyn Home 8" Plush Memory Foam Mattress (Queen), $169.14, available at Wayfair

    Good: Ceramic & Wood Table Lamp
    Deal: 53% Off
    Spruce up a side table or nightstand with this smooth, glossy, and modern lamp made from a ceramic and wood base..

    Reviews: 4.5 out of 5 stars on Wayfair — ranging from, "Ordered 2 for living room and they are beautiful, love them." to, "Love it, the wood can tie in the natural color of other furniture in the room."



    DwellStudio Wallin Table Lamp, $77.99, available at Wayfair

    Good: All-Season Comforter
    Deal: 35% Off
    Bless your bed with an all-season, down-alternative comforter that's crafted with a plush baffle box design and smooth piped edging.

    Reviews: 4.7 out of 5 stars with over 4,000 5-star reviews on Wayfair — "Other comforters are too small and leave way too much extra fabric on the duvet cover.. but this stretches from end to end to end. And I like the way it fills the duvet cover so it always looks a little more fluffy, not so life-less like my other down comforters. Would highly recommend!"



    Alwyn Home All Season Down Alternative Comforter, $60.99, available at Wayfair

    Good: Stylish Server Storage
    Deal: 35% Off
    This mid-century modern style piece is a stylish mix between an entertainment console, kitchen storage unit, and bar cart.

    Reviews: 4.6 out of 5 stars on Wayfair — ranging from, "Great value for the cost." to, "We love our server! It looks like just the photo. It's very sturdy, and well-made."



    Mercury Row Rogerson Contemporary Server, $234.99, available at Wayfair

    Good: Cozy Throw Pillow
    Deal: 65% Off
    One of the coziest throw pillows with ever did see.

    Reviews: 4.6 out of 5 stars on Wayfair — ranging from, "These pillows are super soft and very luxurious. They have a wonderful three-dimensional texture." to, "These pillows add the perfect amount of texture to any bedding set. They are true to color and very tall and sturdy-worth the cost for sure!"



    Laurel Foundry Colmars Throw Pillow, $27.99, available at Wayfair

    Good: Wooden Nesting Tables
    Deal: 6% Off
    Make the most of your small space with this trio of rustic-chic wooden nesting tables.

    Reviews: 4.4 out of 5 stars on Wayfair — ranging from, "Perfect sized tables." to, "Love these, the L shape leg fits under your furniture for space saving and for easy relocating in front or to the side of the chair."



    Mercury Row Cetus 3 Piece Nesting Tables, $94.99, available at Wayfair

    Good: Classic Platform Bed
    Deal: 47% Off
    Pull your sleep space together in classic style with the clean lines of this upholstered, platform bed.

    Reviews: 4.6 out of 5 stars with over 2,000 5-star reviews on Wayfair — "This bed was perfect! I put this bed together in. 1 hour all by myself. There were only 5 steps! I had a platform bed before and this one is lower than expected but still I'm in LOVE with it. Great quality product and it looks AWESOME. It's exactly what I wanted."



    Charlton Home Brookby Upholstered Platform Bed , $211.57, available at Wayfair

    Good: Multi-Storage System
    Deal: 50% Off
    A stylish dual-purpose home buy at its best — this hall tree serves as an entryway bench, coat rack, and 5-shelf storage system.

    Reviews: 4.9 out of 5 stars with over 100 5-star reviews on Wayfair — ranging from,"This fits beautifully without being overbearing in the space....and it serves every function we need it to. I was able to assemble it by myself without an issue." to, "Easy to assemble. Very sturdy. A nice blend in style between contemporary, industrial and classic."



    Williston Forge Robinette 68" Angled Side Hall Tree, $174.02, available at Wayfair

    Good: Faux Sheepskin Rug
    Deal: 65% Off
    Hygge up your bare floors this winter with a rug that is the closest we'll get to walking on clouds.

    Reviews: 4.6 out of 5 stars on Wayfair — ranging from, "Excellent quality, beautiful rug!" and "So soft and fits my bedroom perfectly. Love the shape, size and texture." to, "For the price this rug is amazing. Super thick and soft."



    Mercury Row Bigby Hand-Tufted Faux Sheepskin Natural Area Rug, $139.99, available at Wayfair

    Good: Plush Mattress Topper
    Deal: 78%
    When you don't have the funds to spring for a new mattress, try upgrading your bed with a plush topper instead.

    Reviews: 4.6 out of 5 stars with over 1,000 5-star reviews on Wayfair — "Its like sleeping on a new mattress."



    The Twillery Co. Trahan 3" Down Alternative Polyester Mattress Topper, $58.99, available at Wayfair

    Good: Multifunctional Sofa
    Deal: 55% Off
    This stylish MCM sofa can be folded back and cleverly converted into a futon for extra sleeping space.

    Reviews: 4.3 out of 5 stars on Wayfair — "For the price, this is definitely a 5 star couch. I am more than happy with my purchase. The design is great and very chic."



    Langley Street Cobbs Convertible Sofa, $238.99, available at Wayfair

    Good: Memory Foam Pillow
    Deal: 80% Off
    Sink headfirst into memory foam this season with an affordable, top-rated pillow purchase.

    Reviews: 4.5 out of 5 stars with over 3,000 5-star reviews on Wayfair — "THE most comfortable pillow I've ever slept on."



    Alwyn Home Memory Foam Pillow, $19.97, available at Wayfair

    Good: Accent Chair
    Deal: 64% Off
    Spruce up an open nook in your small space with this sleek, mid-century modern accent chair in bright white.

    Reviews: 4.7 out of 5 stars with over 500 5-star reviews on Wayfair —"Beautiful chair, exactly what I hoped for! Well made wood and metal legs and the plastic seat is very nice quality."



    Langley Street Whiteabbey Side Chair, $70.98, available at Wayfair

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    Most of us have a well-meaning friend who is always pushing the latest wellness trends that they saw on Instagram. Stick a jade egg in your vagina, have some bone broth, take this strange new workout class, and use this vibrating massage tool, they say. While you might not be totally on board with their unconventional health habits, you can always use their interests to predict what type of stuff they'd want for the holidays.

    At a time when "wellness culture " dominates, it can be tough to keep up with all the cool health and wellness influencers and products out there. (Not to mention somewhat sketchy, since many "health" or "wellness" supplements and products are not regulated in any way, shape, or form.)

    Given that, we've compiled some (safe!) gifts that your sweat-loving, Goop-worshiping, wellness-freaky friend will be obsessed with — and even skeptics like you will want to get behind.

    At Refinery29, we’re here to help you navigate this overwhelming world of stuff. All of our market picks are independently selected and curated by the editorial team, but if you buy something we link to on our site, Refinery29 may earn commission.

    Each colorful card in this deck contains a mindfulness practice or mantra for the day.



    Amazon Mindfulness Cards: Simple Practices for Everyday Life, $16.95, available at Amazon

    Soaking in this luxurious combination of eucalyptus, cajeput, and epsom salts will help them relax from a long day of boutique workout classes.



    Saje Apres Sport Soothing Bath Salt Soak, $24.95, available at Saje

    Some people swear that sitting on acupressure mats with hundreds of pointy plastic needles can help manage muscle pain. This mat also includes a bolster for their neck.



    ProSource ProSource Acupressure Mat and Pillow Set, $19.98, available at Amazon

    A classy neoprene gym bag that's big enough to take on an overnight yoga retreat.



    Dagne Dover THE LANDON CARRYALL (MEDIUM), $155, available at Bandier

    Water infused with quartz crystals is incredibly extra — but then again, so is paying $35 for a boxing class.



    Glacce Rose Quartz Bottle, $80, available at Glacce

    If they're so busy that they waste their ClassPass credits each month, they'll appreciate a subscription to the workout streaming service Our Body Electric, aka "obé."



    obé obé Gift Card, 1 Month, $27, available at obé

    Preorder Hannah Bronfman's first book, Do What Feels Good, which is full of recipes, workout motivation, and skincare tips.



    Amazon Do What Feels Good, $19.48, available at Amazon

    A celestial-inspired yoga mat is perfect for practicing your next full moon ritual.



    La Vie Boheme Yoga CELESTIAL, $86, available at La Vie Boheme Yoga

    Instagram's not ready for the gorgeous smoothie bowls your friend will prepare with this matcha coconut butter.



    CAP The Matcha Coconut Butter, $26, available at CAP Beauty

    The racerback design on this sports bra crop top keeps weight off their shoulders — and looks great in workout Instagrams.



    Core 10 Core 10 Women's Icon Series The Warrior Mesh Sports Bra, $35.84, available at Amazon

    Each day of the year, there's a different prompt to read and reflect upon in this book. Even if they're not into meditation, it might inspire some deep thoughts.



    Amazon Journey to the Heart: Daily Meditations, $13.59, available at Amazon

    These Swiss sneakers are highly cushioned, thanks to the cloud-like sole, and they're pretty cool-looking too.



    On Running Cloud, $129.99, available at On Running

    Equinox groupies will appreciate this kit of essential oils, which was inspired by the gym's signature eucalyptus scent.



    UMA UMA x Equinox Wellness Oil Trial Kit, $36, available at Uma Oils

    No, this is not a torture chamber or human toaster, it's an at-home infrared sauna.



    Serenelife Portable Infrared Home Spa, $189.99, available at Amazon

    A packable rose gold jumprope will make their home gym way chicer.



    Amanda Kloots AK! Jump Rope, $40, available at Amanda Kloots

    This gorgeous vessel will keep their green concoctions smoothies chill all day long.



    S'well Geode Rose Traveler, $35, available at S'well

    Reishi mushrooms are known to be a divine, spiritual, ~*~*magic*~*~ kind of mushroom in Traditional Chinese Medicine.



    Moodbeli Mushroom Adaptogen Sachets, $28, available at Moodbeli

    Inside one textured foam roller you'll find an even knobbier one to target tough-to-reach muscles.



    lululemon Double Roller, $58, available at lululemon

    Protect their beloved AirPods within the depths of their massive gym bag with this neoprene case.



    Amazon PodSkinz AirPods Case Protective Silicone Cover Skin, $7.95, available at Amazon

    So, these chocolates allegedly help your skin and relieve anxiety — and if they don't work, well, at least they're chocolate.



    Sakara Sakara Chocolate Trio, $120, available at Sakara

    These high-waisted leggings come in 14 different colors and are surprisingly durable.



    Girlfriend Collective Cherry Compressive High-Rise Legging, $68, available at Girlfriend Collective

    They can pack this massage kit in their carry-on for long flights (or boring meetings).



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    As issues of sustainability and ethical responsibility move to the forefront of the industry, more and more brands are moving to enact real, positive change. On Monday, French fashion house Chanel announced it would halt the use of exotic skins and fur in future creations.

    “The future of high-end products will come from the know-how of what our atelier is able to do,” Bruno Pavlovsky, president of Chanel fashion and president of Chanel SAS, said in an interview with WWD. Pavlovsky's list of exotic skins includes crocodile, lizard, snake and stingray. Sourcing skins that were on par with Chanel's quality and ethical standards became harder and harder, resulting in the decision to eliminate these materials altogether. “There is a problem of supply and that was not Chanel’s business anyway,” the exec explained. “We did it because it’s in the air, but it’s not an air people imposed to us. It’s a free choice.”

    While it will take some time for existing products made with fur and exotic skin to be filtered out, moving forward the brand says it will focus its research and development on textiles and leathers generated by “agri-food” industries. Obviously, PETA is thrilled with the news.

    “The champagne corks are popping at PETA, thanks to Chanel's announcement that it's kicking fur and exotic skins—including crocodile, lizard, and snake skin—to the curb,” PETA Executive Vice President Tracy Reiman said in a statement following Chanel's announcement. “For decades, PETA has called on the brand to opt for luxury, cruelty-free fashion that no animal had to suffer and die for, and now it's time for other companies, like Louis Vuitton, to follow the lead of the iconic double C's and do the same.”

    Louis Vuitton, Gucci, Jimmy Choo, Michael Kors, and Burberry have already joined the fight against fur, but time will tell which brands will follow Chanel's lead and cease the use of exotic skins.

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    In our series My 6-Figure Paycheck , women making more than $100,000 open up about how they got there and what exactly they do. We take a closer look at what it feels like to be a woman making six-figures — when only 5% of American women make that much, according to the U.S. Census w ith the hope it will give women insight into how to better navigate their own career and salary trajectories.

    Today, we chat with a 28-year old sales director in the medical device industry based in Los Vegas, NV. Previously, we spoke to a 26-year-old product manager from Austin, TX, a 28-year old senior social media associate in the aviation industry in Washington D.C., and a 30-year old associate director of social media marketing from New York, NY.

    Job: National Sales Director, Medical Device Industry
    Age: 28
    Location: Las Vegas, NV
    Degree: Bachelor's, English with a minor in Victimology
    First Salary: $23,946 + bonus/commissions equaling $25,000
    Salary: $100,500 + bonuses

    As a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up?

    "I wanted to be many things growing up, from a marine biologist around age 10, to the president as a teenager (and maybe still, if I'm honest). I always cycled back to a desire for defending people who couldn't defend themselves and a deep need for justice and equality.

    "After graduating from high school I decided I either wanted to be a civil rights attorney for the ACLU or an author or journalist à la Anthony Bourdain. I suppose I've always been something of a romanticist."

    What did you study in college?

    "I have a BA in English with a Minor in Victimology. I am currently pursuing a Master's in Marriage and Family Therapy."

    Did you have to take out student loans?

    "Luckily, I was awarded a couple of scholarships prior to starting my undergrad. One was for $10,000, and another for $1,500. I also chose to stay in state to keep my tuition affordable. My four years cost roughly $19,500 of which I was responsible for $8,000.

    "I worked full-time throughout college at Starbucks and later as a concierge for a resort on the Las Vegas strip. With these combined incomes I was able to pay my $2,000 a year off by the end of my senior year."

    Have you been working at this job since you graduated college?

    "I was hired with this company within a few months of graduating from college. Previous to that, I worked as a concierge at a resort on the Las Vegas Strip."

    How would you explain your day-to-day role at your job?

    "My job is to oversee the domestic sales for our medical device company. I lead a small department of four people and make sure that we hit our goals for fiscal growth as well as account acquisition.

    "I maintain contact via email and phone with all of our professional accounts and attend medical conferences throughout the country. I propose sales promotions and new ideas for finding new accounts. I make sure my staff has direction and support to continue farming for these leads."

    Did you negotiate your salary?

    "Yes, I negotiated. I had been at this job for quite a while. When I was offered the promotion to National Sales Director from Territory Sales Manager, I negotiated from the offered $82,000 up to $90,000 and negotiated my commission structure from an offered 2% year over year to a 5% year over year plus quarterly bonuses for hitting targets.

    "To figure out how much I should ask for, I ran some reports on what other sales directors were making and what our company sales have looked like over the past few years and then ran my personal reports for the territory I was previously responsible for. I used the improvements I had gained to leverage my worth; my goal was going to be $100,000 with salary, commissions and bonuses."

    Is your current job your “passion”? If not, what is?

    "Absolutely not! I enjoy my salary, and I'd be lying if I said it wasn't my main motivation for remaining here. My passion is and has always been to help people and I don't feel that this current job offers me that satisfaction."

    If you could, would you change anything in your career trajectory?

    "I am currently pursuing a Master's in Marriage and Family Therapy and hope to help disenfranchised and under-served populations in the Las Vegas area receive mental health services.

    "I have my eye on a Ph.D. eventually, but will start here. This career change is going to give me far more satisfaction and help me feel that my efforts are worthwhile. Plus, the opportunity for continued education and professional growth is exponential."

    What professional advice would you give your younger self?

    "My advice for my younger self would be two-fold. Firstly, don't jump right in to a career. You've worked since you were 16 without any break. Take the summer off, use your savings to travel — as you've always wanted to do. Find out who you are and what you want from life. Let yourself be moved by the people and places you find.

    "Secondly, when you do settle down at this job or another, do not be afraid to explore other options. Don't be afraid to reach for a higher ledge, or switch to an entirely different mountain to climb. Perhaps it's not as high or as impressive to those on the ground, but the view may be exactly what you've been searching for once you reach the top."

    Are you a woman under 35 with a six-figure salary ($100,000+) and want to tell your story? Submit it here.

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    Ariana Grande has had a big year. In fact, 2018 has been her biggest year ever. She released a stunning album, demolished Spotify and YouTube records, and created a music video that we can’t stop talking about.

    Grande’s highly anticipated music video for “Thank U, Next” now holds the record for the biggest music video debut in YouTube history, earning over 50 million views in the first 24 hours, a spokesperson at YouTube told Refinery29. Vevo also confirmed that with those 50 million views, Grande broke its record for most music video views in the first 24 hours, and then the video went on to break Vevo's becoming the new fastest video to reach 100 million views.

    "It's one thing to have a video premiere that comes out of the gate strong and entirely something else for it to continue to sustain that momentum over time. All signs indicate that 'thank u, next' will be a chart topper for us for weeks to come and will contend with many of our top all-time most viewed videos," said Vevo's Head of Content, Programming & Marketing JP Evangelista.

    With over 440,000 comments on the video and over 516,000 chat messages (another YouTube premiere record), her fans are beside themselves. An absolute pop banger referencing all our favorite aughts romantic comedies, from 13 Going On 30 to Legally Blonde to Mean Girls with some Bring It On thrown in for good measure? Not to mention the brilliantly comedic Kris Jenner cameo? Grande makes what she wants on her terms and her fans love her for it.

    As the pop star teased the video with a series of behind-the-scenes photos and spoilers, “Thank U, Next” surpassed 100 million streams on Spotify in just 11 days, making it the fastest song in history to reach that milestone. With that kind of reception, you would think she had taken some time away from the spotlight and made a triumphant return. Nope. A little over three months earlier, Grande released the lush pop album that is Sweetener. Spotify revealed that in 2018, Ariana Grande was the highest streamed woman globally, with more than 3 billion streams.

    While Grande’s year wasn’t all streaming records and album releases — she mourned the loss of Mac Miller and broke things off with whirlwind fiancé Pete Davidson — she has taken tragedy in stride and made something beautiful.

    With this kind of momentum, who’s to say what 2019 will hold for Grande. No, thank you, next.

    This article was originally published on December 2, 2018. It has been updated with new reporting throughout.

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    In 1995, Sheena Iyengar, a business professor at Columbia University and author of “The Art of Choosing,” conducted a study proving that having too many choices is paralyzing to a person's decision-making process. And yet, that hasn't stopped the beauty industry from producing hundreds of new liquid lipstick s in just the last few years. With so many options out there, how do you choose one over the other?

    Recently, that decision has gotten a bit easier thanks to a few much-needed updates from our favorite brands. No longer are liquid lipsticks drying to the point of crusting off our lips; in fact, many are creamy, silky smooth formulas that can last through an intense makeout session without budging — which is exactly why we're adding a handful of them to our fall makeup rotation.

    Still not sure exactly which liquid lipsticks to consider? Keep clicking for our favorites.

    At Refinery29, we’re here to help you navigate this overwhelming world of stuff. All of our market picks are independently selected and curated by the editorial team. If you buy something we link to on our site, Refinery29 may earn commission.

    This liquid lipstick was formulated to keep your lips hydrated the longer it's on. But whether you consider it to be moisturizing or not, you can't deny that is goes on smooth, feels lightweight, and leaves behind an immediate and ultra-rich stain that lasts through lunch.



    Kaja Cushy Vibe High-Pigment Lip Stain, $18, available at Sephora

    Half the battle of finding the perfect liquid lipstick is finding a comfortable applicator. It's no surprise that Charlotte Tilbury got it just right. Sure, this formula is creamy, long-wearing, and packed with pigment, but it also goes on like a dream thanks to the curved, doe-foot tip that hugs the contours of your unique lip shape with ease.



    Charlotte Tilbury Hollywood Lips Liquid Lipstick, $34, available at Sephora

    Rihanna hit it out of the park with her first liquid lipstick. The universally-flattering hue is lightweight, opaque, and insanely long-lasting. Plus, the hourglass-shaped wand hugs lips to deposit the perfect amount of even color.



    Fenty Beauty By Rihanna Stunna Lip Paint Longwear Fluid Lip Color, $24, available at Sephora

    Lawless Beauty, a cruelty-free line of liquid lipsticks, has an extensive list of ingredients with a few notable exceptions, including talc, petroleum, and parabens. But that's not all: The formula is opaque, comfortable, and long-lasting, too.



    Lawless Soft Matte Liquid Lipstick, $25, available at Sephora

    When YouTuber Michelle Phan decided to revamp her makeup line, Em Cosmetics, she created a line of pigmented, whipped liquid lipsticks that never feel dry or cakey on the lips.



    Em Cosmetics Infinite Lip Cloud, $16, available at Em Cosmetics

    NARS' first-ever true liquid lipstick does not disappoint. The formula is light and dries down to a matte, yet comfortable finish. It isn't completely transfer-proof, but it does last 10 hours at the beach (we tested).



    NARS Powermatte Lip Pigment, $26, available at Sephora

    After the success of the Gen Nude range of neutral liquid lipsticks, the brand decided to launch a brand new, 10-shade lineup of the same creamy, long-wearing formula in bold pinks, reds, and purples.



    bareMinerals Statement Matte Liquid Lipcolor, $19, available at Ulta Beauty

    If you want liquid lipstick that will really, truly never move, Beauty Bakerie is the way to go. The indie brand's formula never clumps and never dries out your lips. But we also love the incredible color range; there is an entire rainbow of pigments for every style and skin tone.



    Beauty Bakerie Matte Lip Whip, $20, available at Ulta Beauty

    Prefer a trend two-for-one? This formula comes with two liquid lipstick finishes to mix, match, or wear individually — and it's available in tons of colors, too.



    Touch In Sol Metallist Liquid Foil Lipstick Duo, $25, available at Sephora

    Dose of Colors is an indie company that deserves all of the mainstream attention. We have a particular affinity for the brand's liquid lipsticks. They go on velvety, dry matte without leaving your lips parched, and the color payoff is major.



    Dose of Colors Matte Liquid Lipstick, $18, available at Ulta Beauty

    Considering this was Revlon's first liquid lipstick, it's safe to say the hydrating, plush, and easy-to-use formula isn't shabby.



    Revlon Ultra HD Matte Lip Color, $9.99, available at Ulta Beauty

    If you didn't think makeup was entertaining, you haven't tried this transformative liquid lipstick before. With one smack of your lips, glitter emerges as if by magic.



    Ciaté Glitter Flip, $19, available at Sephora

    If you're looking to meet a formula that grips your lips and never lets go, you've come to the right place.



    Giorgio Armani Beauty Lip Magnet Liquid Lipstick, $38, available at Sephora

    It's been a consistent sell-out at Sephora for good reason — it comes in gorgeous pink and nude shades that stay put for hours, whether you go sheer or full coverage.



    Dior Dior Addict Lip Tattoo, $30, available at Sephora

    A vegan, non-toxic, cruelty-, paraben-, and sulfate-free liquid lipstick is hard to come by — but the vivid matte shades from this under-the-radar indie brand fit the bill and then some.



    Spela Cosmetics Liquid Lipstick, $18, available at Spela Cosmetics

    CoverGirl's full spectrum of vibrant brights comes with a foolproof precision cap.



    COVERGIRL Colorlicious Melting Pout Liquid Lipstick, $7.99, available at Ulta Beauty

    We don't just love this liquid lipstick because it had a cameo on Insecure(for the record, Molly wore Prima Donna). In fact, we stan the formula for a few reasons: it's non-drying (thank the shea butter and jojoba oil), long-wearing, and never unattractively settles in the creases of our lips.



    The Lip Bar The Lip Bar Matte Liquid Lipstick, $12.99, available at Target

    Through bad weather, cocktail hours, a huge burger, or just a long day, this lipstick formula will not forsake you. It lasts all day, goes on incredibly opaque (you only need one swipe to coat your lips), and dries to a comfy matte finish that won't feel like sandpaper on your face. If you need a lipstick that won't budge, get a couple of these next time you're at the drugstore.



    Maybelline Super Stay Matte Ink Lip Color 50 Voyager , $6.69, available at Target

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