How Affordable Accessories Can Actually Save Your Style Budget

Monday, January 18, 2016 0 , , , ,
Lisa Tufano for Paul Mitchell Lisa Tufano for Paul Mitchell

I apologize that I haven’t had the time to shoot as many budget-friendly fashion looks in the last couple of months. I do realize that some of you really enjoy that content so today I’m sharing some makeup and accessory inspiration.

In my opinion, bold accessories and even a great statement lipstick can completely transform the look of an otherwise understated outfit (like this unremarkable black top paired with fitted black denim, for example).

I’ll be honest: for the longest time I wore mostly nude lipsticks and glosses, because darker colors made me self-conscious about my mouth shape and because inevitably bold lipstick transfers onto glassware, napkins, and even your own face when you are a messy eater (#guilty). In the last five years, however, I’ve come to appreciate how transformative a statement lipstick can be, how useful for creating an ice breaker in social situations, and what a fun confidence boost it is to receive compliments or questions from total strangers about one’s lipstick shade. It may sound silly, but if you want to put a little extra pep in your step tomorrow morning then throw on a mostly black outfit (even a casual one like a black blouse and dark denim) and then swipe on a classic red lipstick and see what happens while you go about your day.

Even if you’re not ready to let your lips do the talking just yet, allowing inexpensive accessories to do most of the work is a really clever hack for staying on a tight budget while still adding some variety and even enabling you to rework existing items in your closet. Just don’t forget to take care of them!

Below are links for the affordable products used in creating this look. Oh, and I promise to post a video tutorial for winged eyeliner soon — I’ve been getting this specific request from multiple people and I’m going to confront my intimidation of working with video soon. Ha!

Neon Yellow Gala Necklace: Purple Peridot
Gold Cuff: Freebie from Victoria’s Secret but similar here and here
Lipstick: Wet n Wild “Ravin Raisin” 916D
Eyeliner: Benefit “They’re Real! Push-Up Liner” <— I actually got hooked on this product and the matching mascara last year after they arrived in my $10 monthly Birchbox delivery 



Setting Intention in the New Year

Setting Intention in the New Year - Lisa Tufano

What separates us from what we want is not the depth of our desire, but our ability to choose something and take action upon it.

– Lisa Tufano


I began this post in early December and have come back to it several times over the last few weeks. The thing about celebrating a new year is that unless you live by an ancient Mayan calendar or something then December 31st represents a very precise moment of transition whether we like it or not.

Recently I read an article that challenged the notion that in order to be happy and successful “you’ve just got to want it badly enough.”

Holiday Gift Guide – Stocking Stuffers <$25!


Boss Lady Holiday Gift Guide 2015 - Stocking Stuffers Under $20

1 / 2 / 3 / 4 / 5 / 6 / 7 / 8 / 9 / 10

Today’s post is focusing on some of my favorite gifting ideas that are both unique and affordable. I think you’ll enjoy some of my picks whether you’re looking for something small enough to stuff a stocking, or just some fresh ideas for your own holiday shopping wish list:

#GivingIsMyStyle with Care Kits for Victims of Sex Trafficking

Thursday, December 3, 2015 0 , , ,

"Care Kits" for victims of sex trafficking - November Philanthropy Project with Think Like a Boss Lady and Charity Girl Problems

Women and girls make up 98% of victims of trafficking for sexual exploitation, and over 4.5 million people are trapped in forced sexual exploitation across the globe.

In fact, trafficking women and children for sexual exploitation is one of the fastest growing criminal enterprises in the world. This persists, despite the fact international law and the laws of 134 countries criminalize sex trafficking.

For me this is an ugliness in our world that cannot and should not persist, and over the years I’ve been personally committed to working with and donating to organizations like Love 146, Polaris Project, and Two Wings, whose combined efforts aim to disrupt this global trend of exploitation.

The most mind blowing reality about sex trafficking is that it is still widely occurring in the United States today, and right here in my own city of Los Angeles.

Recently Christine Rodriguez, who I now know through a mutual friend, attended a community impact presentation given by officers of a Los Angeles-based Vice Squad.

Aside from the horrors of trafficking, the officers also shared the lack of resources their unit faces—often not having basic supplies or food for victims.

They mentioned relying on donations and/or paying out of their own pocket and it struck me as incredible saddening, especially considering this is happening in our own city, the average age victims are inducted is only 12-14, and that this is a multi-billion dollar criminal industry.

After the presentation, a few attendees wanted a to figure out a way to help…no matter how small. Thus, this Care Kit Drive came to be.

When a mutual friend reached out to me about Christine’s Care Kit Drive, I knew I wanted to be involved immediately. So with the help and generosity of my girlfriends both here locally and across the country, we tasked ourselves with assembling special kits that we hope can help ease the transition of young women off the street and into rehabilitation programs. Each kit contains some cozy sweatpants, a sweatshirt, warm socks, hygiene and personal care products, and even snacks. It’s the first step in providing safety, comfort and hope in order to break the cycle of exploitation.

I want to honor everyone who contributed to making the Care Kit drive a success. So many women provided their time and labor, others contributed their money, some donated gently used clothing, and many more simply shared our mission to help raise awareness for the cause.

"Care Kits" for victims of sex trafficking - November Philanthropy Project with Think Like a Boss Lady and Charity Girl Problems

"Care Kits" for victims of sex trafficking - November Philanthropy Project with Think Like a Boss Lady and Charity Girl Problems

In addition, we had an incredible amount of support from many brands and individuals:

Paul Mitchell donated gorgeous hair care products

Portico donated super soft wash towels

Cabo Chips donated highly addictive snacking chips

Charity Girl Problems donated socks from her #Soctober sock drive

Jeni Elizabeth donated all kinds of warm clothing items

Jen Garcia donated feminine care and hygiene products

Darlene Hopkins donated toothbrush and toothpaste kits

Heather Elaine Perry mailed items all the way from Atlanta to Los Angeles to be included

The Tote Project generously provided their inspiring canvas totes to hold all the donated goodies

A thousand and one boss lady high fives and hugs to: Therese Mascardo, Ilana Schwarzberg, Brooke Marston, Diana Vertiz, Ashley Fontanetta, Sara Fontanetta, Ursulline Okonkwo, Michelle Schwartz, Ang Hauk, Kim Kline

It is a small project, and it won’t solve the greater problem of sexual exploitation, but I do hope that it inspires you to pursue your own thoughts and acts of compassion this holiday season. Never underestimate your ability to impact the world around you even in seemingly small ways; whether it’s paying off a stranger’s layaway tab, fostering a homeless pet until it can be adopted, volunteering to feed someone in need, or providing companionship and support to a veteran or even an elderly member of our society.


Don’t look for big things, just do small things with great love.

– Mother Teresa

"Care Kits" for victims of sex trafficking - November Philanthropy Project with Think Like a Boss Lady and Charity Girl Problems "Care Kits" for victims of sex trafficking - November Philanthropy Project with Think Like a Boss Lady and Charity Girl Problems
"Care Kits" for victims of sex trafficking - November Philanthropy Project with Think Like a Boss Lady and Charity Girl Problems

Get Rid of Credit Card Debt like a Boss!

Thursday, November 12, 2015 0 , , , ,

Christmas pink decoration with balls and ribbon
If you’ve stepped foot inside of a major retail store since the week of Halloween you’ve probably already noticed the festive swag and holiday bling visually accosting you from every conceivable direction.

There is much to celebrate during the holidays, and I love fairy lights and hot chocolate and watching reruns of A Christmas Story as much as the next person, but just as I did last year I’d like to encourage everyone to focus on mitigating the financial damage the holidays often bring with them. No amount of gorgeous gifts under the tree is worth the long term stress and hardship of paying down the crushing interest of credit cards.

Being smart about money isn’t just about avoiding debt in the first place — it’s also about having the courage to make a healthy recovery when our spending does spiral temporarily out of control.

Desiree Mitchell
I’ve invited Desiree Mitchell to sound off on the blog this week because she has even more to celebrate this holiday season on account of her newfound financial freedom. Desiree is a relatively new boss lady acquaintance of mine, and I have been extremely impressed with her success story which has one of the happiest endings ever because Desiree is officially debt free as of 2015!

And she has graciously agreed to share some of her tips for eliminating credit card debt.

BACKGROUND: Desiree had decided to tackle her $15,000 in credit card debt head-on, and originally gave herself a timeline of 2 years to pay it off. During this time she lost her primary job and had to take a break from her plan, but despite the setback she ended up surprising herself by paying off the entire debt in approximately 12 months! Here are 5 great tips so you can aggressively tackle your debt and really have something to be thankful for next Thanksgiving!

Pink Out Loud! Giveaway with Paul Mitchell & Victoria’s Secret

Monday, October 26, 2015 4 , ,

Paul Mitchell Pink Out Loud for Breast Cancer Prevention and Awareness
According to METAvivor, “if you know someone who has died from breast cancer, they died from metastatic (stage 4) breast cancer. Most people don’t know that, and even fewer people understand that…

Metastatic breast cancer, or stage 4 breast cancer, is the spread of breast cancer to non-adjacent parts of the body — most commonly to the bones, liver, lungs and/or brain. Many effective breast cancer treatments exist, but if the cancer metastasizes and spreads outside of the breast, there is no cure.

Despite these stark realities, the popular breast cancer fundraising movements give on average only 2% of their research funds to researching metastasis. Instead, their primary focus is on prevention, which does nothing to help those already diagnosed, and early detection, which does not impact those facing the ultimate death sentence of stage 4 breast cancer. And while only 6% – 10% of initial breast cancer diagnoses are metastatic, 30% of patients diagnosed with earlier stage breast cancer will eventually develop stage 4 breast cancer and die.

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He Named Me Malala



Malala Yousafzai has accomplished more for women’s rights in a mere decade than I could hope to contribute in 3 lifetimes. She is only human, but the depth of her humanity proves immeasurable by any metrics known to me.

This month the inspirational documentary of how Malala Yousafzai’s homeland (the Swat Valley of Pakistan) was taken over by Taliban extremists, how her family endured under the de facto rule of terrorists, and how Malala became a beacon for female education and empowerment, is being released in select US theaters. As of now, the film will only screen during the month of October.

The full list of theaters is here.