Victoria’s Secret 2012 Bikinis

Last year y’all loved my post about Victoria’s Secret’s newest bathing suits so you could go out and look sexy for spring break, summer and other scantily-clad occasions.

This year I’m bringing back all the strings, strapless and neon to highlight some of my favorites and dish out some more beach body tips.

Victoria's Secret bikini in coral and print

Victoria's Secret bikini in coral and floral print with a boost!

This little number has several assets worth noting– first, the color is so in right now. Coral can be found in all kinds of attire from skirts to jeans but I especially like it on this tropical-themed suit. The cute and sweet floral print top balances the sexy ruched bottoms. Don’t be fooled by the sweetness though, under those tropical flowers is a boost for the girls giving you extra oomph (for those of us that need it)! The pattern is perfect for those of us who enjoy being girly but don’t want to look like a little girl!

One of the reasons its nice to shop Victoria’s Secret is because once you’ve gotten one- you generally know what to order from then on. I can always reference a suit from last year and order a new one online without having to trouble myself with going to a store. The last thing I want to spend my weekend doing is shedding my clothes and agonizing over whether or not the yellow bottoms are better than the lime green on my skin tone or if that top gives me side boob.

So on that note- suppose you order the wrong size or color or you’re just not feelin’ it anymore once your bikini arrives? Well, Victoria’s Secret shipping bags are reusable and you can just slap on the included return handling information and either exchange it or get a refund. Trust me, I know this works because I have even exchanged the same top multiple times with no consequence to me. How convenient!

Neon bikini with animal print bottom

Neon bikini with a muted animal print bottom, perfect for grabbing attention!

So here’s another tip– if there’s anything I’ve learned from my most recent workout habits, neon makes everything look better! After a couple weeks of successful cardio on a schedule, I rewarded myself with some new workout gear. I purchased two VS sports bras, one in neon green and the other neon pink. I walked in front of the mirror and it was like an instant improvement. I can’t explain why but something about neon just makes you look amazing (within reason of course).

This leads me to bathing suit recommendation number two– neon bandeau top with a fun animal print bottom. These bottoms are the same as the first bikini I showed off. There are actually 29 different variations of those exact bottoms and they can be paired with at least 20 different tops so there’s a lesser chance you’ll be wearing the same outfit as the Brazilian babe 20 ft. away on the beach.

Ruffles add volume on to boobs on this bikini

Ruffles add volume to itty-bitties and provide the illusion of bigger cups.

One way you can show off what you’ve got and emphasize your strengths is to consider color and cut that’s best for your body type. If you have small breasts, try a push-up or ruffles. Ruffles can add a lot of volume and don’t have irritation of a bunch of padding. Try this one- (although it has underwire, padding AND ruffles). The same can apply to ruffles on the bottom instead of the top- it adds volume.

Another style that can work wonders is shine. Sequins, metallic and jeweled embellishments are great ways to grab attention in all the right places. However, make sure when you’re rocking the sequin bikini you won’t be snorkeling with barracudas or tanning in the backyard- it might be a little flashy for those occasions.

Color, as I mentioned earlier, is really important to consider when choosing a suit. What looks good on the model might look awful on you (and not always because there a size 0 and you might not be.) I always take my hair color and level of tanness into account before settling on one suit. Sometimes darker colors (like plum or navy) can make a pale person look that much more pale. Go for something more bright and cheery to be safe!

Another important tip is string size! Always remember that if you have any extra fat, the smaller the string, the more it’s going to dig in. If you look better in lacy panties because they don’t create a crease why would you all the sudden spring for the string bottoms?? No. To assure you aren’t emphasizing extra body weight, shoot for a larger band on the side of tops and bottoms (and of course order the RIGHT size, not the size you WISH you were!) For those with bigger breasts and butts, sometimes more coverage is better. All cleavage is not necessarily good cleavage- if you remember one thing in life- let it be that!

More coverage and support bikini

More coverage and support here are better for big breasts, and more flattering too!

Small triangle top and string bottom bikini

Small triangle top and string bottom bikini for smaller butts and boobs works fine.

Here’s an example of basically the same suit with a small set model and a model with larger breasts– notice how smaller goes with smaller and larger goes with larger- this applies to you also!

Finally don’t forget to get a nice glow (in a safe way) before you head out to the beach. Once you’re there use at least 15 SPF to protect (or if you wanna little more UV rays try 8 SPF but anything is better than nothing!) Read some more tips about getting a great– fake– tan on my post about sunless tanners.

So if you can remember to focus on color, cut and body type, you should be golden (literally) this year when showing off your bikini and bod. Enjoy the spring and summer season and don’t forget it’s never too late to be great, in a bikini!

Until next time,

Callie

Working out as a working woman

Guess who’s back? It’s me again and let me tell you, graduate school and a balanced life are not the easiest things to manage. However, it’s a new year and I’ve got some things to say- so here we go.

So today’s post is all about working out on a work schedule, and trying to get fit and healthy. I hope y’all wanna be healthy too, because even in the short amount of time I’ve been breaking a sweat, I can tell the difference already in my posture and the way I move.

So back to the point- as you all should know, recently Paula Deen has proclaimed she was diagnosed with Type-II Diabetes three years ago. While she is still one of my favorite chefs to reference for some good ol’ Southern dishes (y’all), I have always understood that eating food saturated with that much butter couldn’t be good. I mean if your favorite food was fettuccine alfredo would you eat that every night? I hope not! Its all about moderation, always. So while I am disappointed in Mrs. Paula and some of her choices, it doesn’t influence my opinion recipes I like from her.

Regardless, here comes Bobby Deen to save the day with “Not My Mama’s Meals,” a new show on the Cooking Channel. Well I am here to say something– Bobby Deen may be able to pull off “Not My Mama’s Meals” and make things better again in a whiz (ok, I am really interested in the lighter recipes he’s making but it doesn’t really assuage the situation), but he obviously doesn’t have to deal with the genes passed on from his mother. After all, he’s a man, so I doubt he has the same weight issues as her.

Changing the fate of Bobby Deen just means taking out those extra two sticks of butter for “flavor” and cutting back on the doughnut hamburgers, but for us ladies, it’s a whole other ballgame. To change my fate, I would have to create a show called, “Not My Mama’s Thighs.”

As women, we all have these “trouble spots.” Perhaps you can’t get abs even though you workout constantly? Maybe you have a muffin top that seems invincible or perhaps you’re like me and seemingly can’t combat thighs no matter what you do? Well let’s face it, sometimes the gene pool is more powerful than your power workout. That’s life. But here’s where I say- challenge that idea!

For my entire college career, I’ve considered my “American thighs” to be part of nature– just live with it. But recently I’ve started to question my logic. Maybe I just wasn’t targeting the right areas and didn’t really apply myself. If  you really want to accomplish a goal, do some research, find a solution and go for it! For me– it was finding some great workout plans on Pinterest and actually picking out some that seemed realistic and putting them to use!

My workout of choice is currently from Prevention.com and focuses on the premise that slower sets achieve quicker results. The workout incorporates a two alternating plans six days a week. Plan A focuses on arms, abs and a 30 minute “fat-burning” cardio session. Plan B targets legs, butt and back and has an “endurance” cardio session, basically a 30-minute power walk. All you need to do the exercises are a pair of light weights (or I use 5 lb-ers and they work fine), some space and a chair. My favorite part about the Prevention workout is that the goal is to do it for 14-days and then assess results. For me its great because, come on, who can argue against a 14-day workout?? Just two weeks and see where your progress is. Anyone can do that! And if you really like it and see results, just keep going.

Altogether, the actual workout is about 50 minutes (for me at least). That’s less than an hour. For me with nine hours of classes per week, plus a 20-hour work week and homework, dinner, weekend visits to see my boyfriend- I can still manage this commitment without it feeling like a drag. It’s not so long that I think of all the OTHER things I should be doing instead but it’s long enough that I feel like I am making strides to get fit. Not to mention the moves are not complicated, check them out here–

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So now that you’re in the loop, before you run out and start you’re own workout plan, here are a few tips I’ve come up with since I started working out about a month ago:

  • Start with a couple weeks of cardio before committing to an intense workout plan. You’re much more likely to give up when you jump in over your head before you’re body is ready to handle a regimented plan. Commit to 30-minutes a day of SOMETHING, anything active, for a few weeks before starting that P90X video, Jillian Michaels’ 30-Day Shred or the Prevention plan I recommended. It will seem MUCH harder if you start day-one with no prior activity (thus making you think you can’t do it!)
  • If you find a plan you like on the Internet, print it out! I actually printed out all the directions and pictures (maybe 5 pages total for you tree huggers) for my workout plan and taped them to the wall where I do my workout. This way if I need to reference the directions (like every 5 minutes) they’re right there and I can keep up my heart rate without skipping a beat to go look up what’s next. Same goes for a plan you find in a magazine- rip out the pages and put them up on the wall. Or if you’re really creative, dedicate a special chalkboard or whiteboard and write out your plan in a cutesy way that works for you.
  • On the note of decorations- add some inspiration to the walls! I have a large mirrored closet where I workout and I can easily write and change messages to myself with erasable markers. Find a special quote that gets you going and put it on the wall where you can see throughout your workout. Then that little voice in your head that might be saying, “Ugh, let’s just stop there” is countered by your more rational thought saying, “Keep up the hard work!” However, I would not recommend posting pictures of little bony models on the wall- that’s not motivation, you shouldn’t use a comparison of your unique body to someone else as motivation. Keep the motivation positive.
  • Keep track! For my workout, you’re supposed to workout six days a week. For people who like to check things off lists or stay organized, and especially those who are unorganized, write down every time you workout. I have a calendar in my kitchen that I pass every day and I put a little “W” in the corner of each day I workout. This is either a happy little mark of recognition or, if you’ve missed some days, a glaring sign that you need to get back to business. For me it acts as a sort of check-and-balance system so I know exactly when I’m on schedule and if I’ve been putting off a workout for too long. Plus later down the road you can tally up your marks and it can act as a progress tracker!
  • Music! This is essential, or at least some kind of entertainment is. For me I have trouble reading on a treadmill (unless it’s on the Nook, which rules out my research textbook) so I usually jam out with some tunes. Check out Pandora or Spotify for some specific workout tracks. On Pandora I can listen to “Pop and Hip Hop Power Workout Radio” and after a few days or thumbs upping or thumbs downing songs- it’s not too bad.

So I hope this helps y’all on your journey to sexiness, health, bikini season or whatever it is that motivates you! Do something for yourself this year. If you want some more tips or motivation feel free to send me a note. Good luck–

Callie

Take on sunless tanners for sexier skin

This day in age, sunless tanners and spray tans should be trendier than taking on those harmful UV rays. We are all aware of the damaging effects of sunlight exposure and tanning beds, but whether or not we heed the warnings is another story.

Of course as sorority women we all want to be the tannest, skinniest fashionistas out there and sometimes healthy habits fly out the window. Well that’s not a good way to live and with so many other options out there we can make better choices that will make our bodies tanner and skinny longer!

So what am I using now? Well I am a returning user of Jergens natural glow moisturizers and they have made some excellent changes in the last couple years that make use much more enjoyable.

Jergens Natural Glow moisturizing lotion

My lotion from Jergens, lasts 2x longer, or so we'll see!

Last week I began rubbing on the thick lotion from Jergens which used to have a horrendous smell and could show up with weird smudges the next day. Well thankfully those days are over. Now, the lotion has a light floral scent and is much easier to apply without “mistakes.” Definitely wash your hands and wrists immediately after application or else they will be orange, but other than that it’s pretty fool-proof.

Another, quicker option is Sally Hansen Salon Airbrush Legs. This has been a fail-proof way to get an instant tan since senior prom! There are four different shades you can use to match your skin tone and add a great tan. From pageants to socials to just wearing a strapless dress out– this spray is perfect for the whole body.

Sally Hansen Spray-on tan

Sally Hansen Airbrush Legs- great for a temporary tan.

I have trouble with strap lines from bathing suits and the airbrush legs can be sprayed on the skin, smoothed in and voila, tan! The only caution I have is that I would lightly dab a paper towel on the area where you apply before putting on the outfit you intend to wear for the night (or day). Also, throughout the night the edge of your attire might get some of the spray rubbed on but this should come out in the wash- and it is usually inside of the garment so it won’t affect your appearance during the night. To “take off” your tan, all  you do is shower and you’re back to the old you.

Another quick fix that will last longer is, of course, a spray tan. There are plenty of places to get these done however I have always chosen to get a hand-spray, meaning someone would physically apply the spray tan. I love technology, but not when we’re talking about my tan! As long as you follow all the directions (exfoliate beforehand, wear loose-fitting clothing, don’t shower until the next day, etc.) all should go flawlessly. I think, if you’re afraid of a spray tan, you just need to live a little! Most of the time it works out just fine and lasts almost a week.

So, get your sexy tan the healthy way and kick the UV rays (don’t quit the beach but wear at least 15 SPF). Have fun and it’s our little secret!