It’s been a minute since I’ve shared wedding content, so herrre we go again!

I wanted to talk dresses with you because I feel like the dress is one of the most important aspects of a wedding. I mean…I could have worn several different dresses if I had the time to change my look and the budget. For my wedding in Kauai, I knew I wanted something modern, classic, and a little sexy. Not too try-hard bride. Ya know what I mean? I knew which dress I wanted before I even tried it on. It was a one and done type of deal. HOWEVER, even after I bought my dress, I still longingly looked at these gorgeous lacy, sparkly gowns. I don’t regret my decision AT ALL, but I just appreciate a lot of other looks. I was lucky enough to have found my dress on a second-hand site and I had a seamless experience, but I normally probably would not recommend that route because I’ve heard some horror stories.

And that’s where Kinsley James Bridal comes in. If you haven’t heard of Kinsley James and you’re a bride in California, you MUST pay them a visit.

As experienced wedding coordinators in the Bay Area and recently married themselves, the owners Dawn and Amber saw the need for a couture bridal salon in the East Bay Area.  During their engagement and specifically their search for their wedding dresses, they had to travel to San Francisco, down south and even to other states to try on some of their favorite designers.  So they opened up Kinsley James to serve brides in Walnut Creek, CA and in Los Angeles, CA. Their goal is to bring you the couture and style a bride needs.  They travel to bridal fashion week in New York twice a year to hand select well known, unique designers and dresses to represent Kinsley James.  They have personal working relationships with their designers and they partner with them to find the perfect dress for you!  

Their shops are just so chic and the KJ Girls just GET IT. So I am SO excited to have partnered with Kinsley James to bring you this blog post on how to choose your wedding dress.

Let’s get into it…

But first, know that there are no rules. These are just things that helped me decide on my dress.

1.} Don’t go with the trends

And by this, I mean don’t just wear a wedding dress because everyone else is. Do you. If you’re loving a mermaid moment, wear a fitted gown that flares out, for example. Who cares what is ‘in’?! Going this route probably means that you will be satisfied with your choice years after your wedding.

This is the Gala gown by Galia Lahav. It’s a mermaid dress with a deep plunging v-neckline made of fully embroidered lace.

2.} Consider your venue

First things first, if you want to wear a ballgown to your beach wedding, DO IT. There’s nothing worse than following rules when it comes to dressing for your wedding. But do consider the location and decide what you think would look best given the setting and the vibe. Whether it’s being a princess on the beach with an all-out glam dress and decor to match or a classic and simple dress to your ballroom wedding, do what makes you feel like your best self. It’s so fun to tie your dress in to the whole vibe and theme of your wedding, so if it’s a juxtaposition like a ball gown on the beach, maybe incorporate glam details here and there into your decor. Get what I mean?

This is the Gia gown by Galia Lahav. It’s a sheer strapless corset dress in shades of nude and blush, with a pleated silk tulle skirt adorned by beaded and crystal encrusted dramatic appliques.

3.} Let your body shape lead the way

If you don’t know where to start, I would start here and just begin trying on all kinds of different styles and shapes. You’ll know pretty quickly what you think looks best. If you’re looking to flaunt the girls, try a low-cut dress, maybe with a plunging neckline, if you want to show off your ass, a mermaid style dress is the perfect option. If you want to just enjoy food and let things hang, try an A-line dress. There are SO many options.

This is the Phillips gown by Tara LaTour.

If you have the chance to visit Kinsley James, you will be amazed at their talents. When I went in to pick out a few dresses to photograph, Alexia at KJ Walnut Creek got my style instantly. She pulled a bunch of dresses and I liked them ALL. It was a hard choice to even pick 3 that were the winners.

If you’re a current or past bride, what style are you wearing/did you wear?



This post is in partnership with Kinsley James Bridal. All opinions are my own.

The vibe for my wedding makeup was natural-ish with a BIG focus on the skin. Like, lots of highlighting, contouring, bronzing, and shimmer pops going on. I wore very little eyeshadow and a very simple lip. Why so NATURAL? Well, I’m not really a ‘natural’ kind of person in a lot of ways, but I like for my skin to look its very best…and that means no cake face. Plus I am personally not a huge fan of a lot of eyeshadow in my everyday life, so I did my wedding makeup based off what I look like everyday. I just added some pops of glam, like subtle shimmer on the lids, bold lashes, and accentuated my eyes with contouring.

Get the deets:

Double cleansing is such a THING right now, and before I knew what it meant, I thought…okay? Big deal. Not really. It honestly sounded like a big waste of products.

What it actually means is that you’re using two different types of cleansers to properly remove impurities and cleanse your skin. The term is a Korean skincare term – not at all surprised by this – and it means that you’re using an oil based cleanser and a water based cleanser.

Ok, so why the f would you double cleanse your face? And why use an oil if you already have oily or acne prone skin? Because oil is a lot more effective than any water based product to lift away sebum, sunscreen, and makeup. So cleansing with oil actually helps to PREVENT you from breaking out.

I always use an oil based cleanser first, and then follow it up with a water based cleanser.

Following the oil cleanse with a water based cleanser allows the surfactants (cleansing agents) to more penetrate the layers of skin a lot easier had you not used oil. This is because you have cleared away the oil barrier that otherwise would prevent this from happening. Water based cleansers get rid of water based impurities such as sweat and environmental pollutants.

I’ve tried and tested what feels like a 8 million cleansers, oils, and balms by now, but these are my top 4…


1.} Farmacy Green Clean: Omggg this stuff is seriously the best makeup remover of all time. You need it now, regardless of your skin type. And yes, it can absolutely be used if you did not wear makeup today. If you wore sunscreen and other oils on your face, please use this before using a water based cleanser. The consistency is so luxe and it makes removing makeup and other impurities on your face just SO easy. I use a damp white washcloth and there is no pulling involved at all.

2.} BOSCIA Makeup Breakup Cleanser: I used this stuff for a good 6 years and I can’t really remember why I stopped, but it is damn good at removing your makeup. If you’re looking for something that comes in a pump bottle (vs. the Green Clean that comes in a tub), this is your product. It’s really just effortless to use and you’ll have zero excuses to be lazy when it comes to makeup removal.


1.} Acure Brightening Cleansing Gel: Acure is KILLING IT with their skincare products. Pretty soon I think my entire skincare routine will be filled with Acure products. This cleanser is fabulous for keeping your skin feeling fresh. Plus it’s so inexpensive…yet it WORKS, as do all of the other Acure products I have used.

2.} Saturday Skin Rise + Shine Purifying Cleanser: Not only is the packaging so fun and Instagrammy (you know I live for some beautiful packaging), but the product is just as good. Saturday Skin’s cleanser contains apple and peach extracts whisk away impurities without stripping the skin for a fresh, revitalized complexion.


There’s nothing better than finding a drugstore gem of a beauty product! Generally, drugstore beauty products are less expensive than department store products, and when they really work well, there’s no need to spend extra money on their counterparts.

These are some items that are tried and true for me from the drugstore, from makeup to eye drops. PLUS they’re all cruelty free items.

I’d love to hear any of your favorites because I LOVE a good drugstore buy.

I have become completely obsessed with the lymph system, and with that comes DRY BRUSHING.

Dry brushing stimulates your lymphatic system, but it also reduces cellulite, unclogs pores, and brushes dead skin off of your body.

I go over my entire dry brushing routine in the video above, and list all of the benefits, but please note that dry brushing should not be done every single day as it is pretty harsh on your skin (in the best way possible). Please make sure you also moisturize after you dry brush. Your skin will feel AH-MAZING.


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