The 5 Minute Outfit

September 25, 2017  |  Fashion 7 comments

Not all of us have time to plan our outfits the night before. Some of us like to waste time on our smartphones until we fall asleep. Others have actual responsibilities like putting kids to bed, responding to work emails, or folding that last pile of laundry. When you get up in the morning, your creative juices might not be flowing yet. So what do you do when you wake up with no energy to come up with a fabulous outfit idea? You opt for the 5 minute outfit.

Anthropologie Ruffled Galaxy Kimono

Kimono: Anthropologie / Necklace: c/o Soft Surroundings (similar) / Jeans: Articles of Society (similar) / Wedges: c/o Express (similar) / Clutch: c/o Express (similar) / Sunglasses: c/o Express

Soft Surroundings Druzy Pendant

5 Minute Outfit on Bangles and Bungalows

The 5 Minute Outfit

5 Minute Outfit

Clutch and coffee

Yasmin Hakim in Lafayette Square

How to Achieve the 5 Minute Outfit

1. Start with a basic canvas that’s a no-brainer. If it’s the weekend, it may be jeans and a t-shirt. If it’s the workweek, it may be your favorite capris and a tank top.

2. A statement kimono in a bold color will make you feel instantly fabulous. It’s comfortable and lightweight. And if you’re in a chilly office or restaurant, it will hide your goose bumps. There are so many affordable options out there for year-round wear.


3. Style your basic tee with a power accessory. I like to call them power accessories because they give you that extra oomph to make you feel special all day.


4. Go for bright red or hot pink lipstick. Oftentimes that extra burst of lip color will get people talking and complimenting your sense of beauty.

5. Finish off your look with neutral, yet comfortable shoes. Nude wedges usually go with everything and are comfortable. With this option, you don’t have to spend time searching for the right shoe or worry if your feet will be in agony all day.

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve worn these jeans with a white top and thrown a kimono over it. The kimono is like a superhero cape. There’s something about a fabulous flowing piece of cloth that makes you feel like you can accomplish so much more. Shop my 5-minute look in the blog shop.

Photographs taken by Mattea Linae. Necklace provided by Soft Surroundings.

Age Defying Beauty at Soft Surroundings

September 22, 2017  |  Beauty 13 comments

With a crowded market for high-end age defying beauty products, it’s hard to choose the right one for you. These products can be pricey, often over $100 for a small jar. That’s why I love shopping for boutique brands that are laser focused on anti-aging products. Rather than spreading themselves too thin, you know they’ve got their eye on the ball when it comes to this particular beauty concern.

Age Defying Beauty at Soft Surroundings

Soft Surroundings has an amazing variety of age defying beauty options. With a slightly older demographic, it’s committed to offering the best anti-aging products, including ones you might not necessarily find at the mall’s makeup counter. Here are a few I’ve been testing lately:

Top Picks for Age Defying Beauty at Soft Surroundings

VenEffect Firming Photo Serum at Soft Surroundings

VENEffect Firming Phyto Serum

WHAT IT DOES: A potent serum that enhances skin tone and firmness.

WHAT I LEARNED & LOVE: I found my skin brightened over time. I’m not sure about its firming effects, as my skin is still pretty elastic in my 30s. But it does feel extra luxurious upon application.

Blue Copper 5 Firming Eye Complex at Soft Surroundings

Blue Copper 5 Firming Eye Complex

WHAT IT DOES: Active copper, anti-aging peptides, and collagen-boosting proteins lift, tone, and tighten the area around your eyes.

WHAT I LEARNED & LOVE: There is a noticeable improvement in the health of my eye area. Note: I used this in combination with my JeNu Plus, which helped to accelerate the minimization of fine lines around the eyes.

Amarte Aqua Lotion

Amarte Aqua Lotion

WHAT IT DOES: Enhances skin’s clarity and transparency and improves tone and texture.

WHAT I LEARNED & LOVE: It’s great for my combination skin. The ultra lightweight lotion evens out the texture of my skin without making it feel heavy. So oily areas and dry areas feel equally cool, clean, and smooth. I also found it gave my skin a bit of inner glow over time.

I used these in combination for extra fabulous results. But they all have their unique benefits. My favorite happened to be the Amarte Aqua Lotion, which made my skin feel like silk. Soft Surroundings has over 150 amazing skincare options curated for lasting age defying beauty results.

What’s your current anti-aging beauty favorite?

Disclosure: Soft Surroundings provided me these beauty products in exchange for a review.



Wish List Wednesdays September 20, 2017

September 20, 2017  |  Wish List Wednesdays 18 comments

wish list

What I want, need and love on my wish list this week …

1 / H&M Ruffle-trimmed Dress

2 / Pillow Guy Luxury Bedding

3 / Baublebar Shani String Hoop

4 / Sugar Paper Wax Seal Set in Gold

5 / Dagne Dover Ava Bucket

6 / Madewell Cotton-blend Sweater

7 / KG Kurt Geiger Strut Leather Ankle Boots

See anything you want, need or love for your wish list?


Summer’s Not Over with the Anthropologie Sale

September 18, 2017  |  Fashion 15 comments

September may be my favorite month with the changing color of the leaves, the mildly warm weather, and the wardrobe transition into light layers. It’s also a great time for sales. As fall items make their way into stores, there are an abundance of deep discounts on summer styles. Since the weather is still pretty pleasant, this is the time to buy and wear what you want at the price you want. I’m coveting everything right now at the Anthropologie sale. With an extra 25% off, it’s got my wallet in a tizzy. This Valencia baby doll dress, originally $148, is now $38.

Valencia Dress Anthropologie Sale

September in St. Louis

Blogger Yasmin Hakim in Lafayette Square

Golden glow Yasmin Hakim

Old Navy Ghillie Flats

Hanging out in Lafayette Square

Yasmin Hakim in Anthropologie Valencia Dress

Anthropologie Valencia Dress

Shop the Anthropologie Sale

Here are more of my favorite items from the Anthropologie sale:

And check out these other fall sales going on right now:

Lord & Taylor: Up to 20% off until 9/19

Rebecca Minkoff: Up to 50% off

Ann Taylor: 40% off select

LUISAVIAROMA: Extra 20% off sale items

Photographs taken by Mattea Linae





Playful Prep for Fall with Old Navy

September 15, 2017  |  Fall Fashion 11 comments

This post is brought to you by Old Navy.

Life is all about happy coincidences. When I chose these Old Navy pixie ankle pants I was smitten by the marigold shade, which is having a moment right now. To tone things down I added a grey sweater with a cheerful rose gold polka dot print — my take on playful prep for fall. I patted myself on the back for coming up with such an awesome color combination, thinking it was so original. Little did I know that was not the case. It’s funny how color pops up in everyday life without even realizing it.

Lulus on grand in St. Louis

I had the intention of shooting at Lulu’s on Grand in St. Louis because I remembered it had a bright yellow door, which I loved. Yellow happens to be one of my favorite colors.

Yasmin Hakim in Old Navy September 2017

Sweater: c/o Old Navy / Pixie Ankle Pants: c/o Old Navy / Sunglasses: c/o Old Navy / Headband: c/o Old Navy (available in store)

Imagine my surprise when I realized I perfectly matched the restaurant’s facade. I could stand in front of it and disappear like an illusion.

Old Navy Playful Prep on Bangles & Bungalows

I swear I didn’t plan this. Like I said, it was a happy coincidence.

Old Navy Playful Prep

So I took it in stride and made the most of the location. In fact, I doubled down on it.

Old Navy Fall Trends

Perhaps this may go viral and start a new trend of dressing to match your surroundings…or maybe not.

Old Navy on Bangles & Bungalows

Outdoor seating at Lulu's St. Louis

Yasmin Hakim in Old Navy Playful Prep September Fall Trends

One thing’s for certain, yellow is definitely my lucky color. And I totally recommend these Old Navy pixie ankle pants, especially if you’re trying to capture the playful prep trend for fall. These pants fit like a glove, with a good stretch, and a fabulous price at $35. September promos at Old Navy include up to 40% off all pants and jeans so be sure to get your sale on.



Wish List Wednesdays September 13, 2017

September 13, 2017  |  Wish List Wednesdays 7 comments

wish list

What I want, need and love on my wish list this week …

1 / Banana Republic gets the Olivia Palermo treatment with extra emphasis on the details like on this pink ruffle trim coat.

2 / Paperless post invites are always a hit with their modern design, guest list tracking, and automatic follow-up messages. Make your party planning a bit easier and eco-friendly!

3 / A classic pump with a neutral palette to go with everything.

4 / I’m curious whether this liner works as well as it promises. Have you tried it?

5 / This statement skirt that will draw tons of compliments.

6 / Keep these post poo drops in your powder room for guests so they don’t worry about “spoiling” their welcome.

7 / Pair these studded boots with a sweet pink dress for the perfect twist.

See anything you want, need or love for your wish list?

Disclosure: This post was sponsored by Paperless Post. All opinions are my own.




Greenhouse Effect

September 12, 2017  |  EastWest 4 comments

I visited the Jewel Box in St. Louis, a gorgeous greenhouse in the heart of Forest Park where palm trees and flowers reign. Outside the Jewel Box, the garden is blooming and the lily pond is in full effect. Inside there’s a serene space for locals and tourists to stop and take a beat. I’m not sure how long the greenery will last this year, but for now it’s a breath of fresh air.

Madsam Tinzin Jacket

Madsam Tinzin Jacket Details

Madsam Tinzin Jacket on Bangles and Bungalows

Yasmin Hakim in Madsam Tinzin Jacket

Madsam Tinzin Jacket Full Length

To compliment the tropical vibes, easy breezy pieces seem fitting. I paired this gorgeous floral embroidered jacket by Madsam Tinzin from the Tales of Brok-pa collection with my favorite pair of jeans and a white tank. When you’re styling a statement jacket for a casual day, all you need is a simple canvas to work with.

I’ve attended a couple of weddings over the years here in the Jewel Box. The greenhouse is a lovely place to share vows. A lofty space in which life literally grows around you signifies the hope for a relationship that will be nurtured and well tended. I love stopping by the Jewel Box every now and then when things become hectic. The serenity of a greenhouse provides a place to contemplate and reflect on the beauty around you and your place within it.

What types of places do you like to visit for a break from it all?


5 Ways to Lounge Like a Goddess with PajamaSutra

September 11, 2017  |  EastWest 5 comments

Resting in PajamaSutra #loungelikeagoddess

How many of you are guilty of wearing scrubby pajamas around the house when you’re lounging around? I have a drawer stocked full of them and the holes to prove they’ve been worn to death. When hanging at home, I dress for comfort. But I also believe how you look affects how you feel. If you wear threadbare pajamas, you will feel sluggish. And if you wear something luxurious, you will feel more like a goddess. So why not lounge like a goddess? I’ve partnered with PajamaSutra to share five ways I like to unwind in their luxe Jaipur Rose dressing robe.

5 Ways to Lounge Like a Goddess

Drinking tea in PajamaSutra #loungelikeagoddess

1. Drink a cup of tea: Coffee is too strong for my stomach. But a cup of tea is like one long sip of heaven for me. It’s funny that I love tea now because as a child, I used to frown upon it. My parents would drink three or four cups a day. I didn’t want to end up addicted as well. As I became older I cut out coffee, energy drinks, and soda. Tea became my faithful caffeine ally. That first sip is always so calming, like a deep breath of fresh air.

Hand block printed robe #loungelikeagoddess

2. Shut off your phone: I’m terrible at this because I’m addicted to my iPhone. I’m the person they write those articles for on why smartphones are ruining your sleep. Unplugging for a couple of hours is a good way to clear the head, focus on the moment, and be present.

3. Soothe your senses: Sometimes you need a quick fix. When you feel stressed, it’s usually from sensory overload. Calm at least one of your senses by smelling essential oils scented with natural elements like lavender, jasmine, and ylang ylang. A burst of scent soothes your brain like a little contact high. Two options I love are Adoratherapy Chakra Boosts and Aveda Stress-fix Concentrate.

Yasmin Hakim in PajamaSutra #loungelikeagoddess

4. Catch up on Netflix: I love a good TV show. I’ll play the TV in the background while I’m doing mindless work. Or I’ll unwind to a reliable comedy like Friends or Parks and Rec. It’s a great way to escape for a short period and chill out. Here are some of the shows I’ve enjoyed lately:

  • Black Mirror: I finally watched the first episode and it is crazy. For the last 10 minutes, my jaw hung open. None of the other episodes I’ve seen so far are as disturbing, but they do make you think. This show is good when you want something suspenseful, but shorter than a movie.
  • Atypical: A heartwarming story about a middle class family and each member’s relationship with the autistic teen son. His best friend/co-worker is hilarious, and happens to be a POC (person of color) whose role has nothing to do with his ethnicity. So kudos to more progress in Hollywood!
  • Other noteables: Merlin (fantasy adventure), Drop Dead Diva (romance & dramedy in a courtroom setting), Girlfriend’s Guide to Divorce (rich women with problems), Glow (Think OITNB, but set in a wrestling ring)

Lounging like a goddess #loungelikeagoddess

5. Get lost in a good book: With so many options, it’s hard to find books to love. I have so many sample books downloaded on my Kindle app, but only a fraction have been fully downloaded. If the book doesn’t interest me in the first couple of chapters, I’m done. Here are three that do:

  • Contagious: Learn about why things go viral and how to adapt this for your business. It has great tips and anecdotes that can help you reach more people with some creative thinking.
  • Rich People Problems: A guilty pleasure about the drama of high society in Singapore and China featuring an avalanche of fashion references. The author uses short stories that dig deep into each character, but are also interwoven to create a riveting overarching story. Don’t forget to read the first two books: Crazy Rich Asians and China Rich Girlfriend. They’re just as juicy.
  • Unfu*k Yourself: If you liked The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fu*k, you’ll enjoy this one too. It’s a step-by-step guide on how to get out of your head and be more productive. Parables, quotes, and convincing real life stories motivate you into changing how you think.

PajamaSutra on Bangles and Bungalows #loungelikeagoddess

If you’re ready to lounge like a goddess, shop dressing robes, bridal robes, and pajamas, all hand block-printed and made from 100% cotton voile, at

Disclosure: PajamaSutra sponsored this post. All opinions are my own.


Timeless Jewelry with Michael Hill

September 8, 2017  |  Fashion 5 comments

Michael Hill Diamond Silver Jewelry

Lately things have become overwhelmingly busy. The lazy days of summer are over. Projects have begun to pile up and work has started buzzing at a frenetic pace. In between the busy spiral of life, I often try to seek a couple hours of peace. An outdoor shoot is a wonderful way for me to stop the multi-tasking and focus my efforts on one thing — taking beautiful photos. A favorite spot for endless inspiration is St. Louis’s Forest Park. Its timeless nature and energy ensures there’s always an untapped corner to enjoy and relax in.

Timeless jewelry

When life gets crazy, I like to return to the idea of simplicity. Finding the simple joys in life brings me inner peace. That’s why a jaunt in the park or a meal al fresco is a great way to slow things down and take a beat. My mother has a hanging flower garden on her backyard deck. She takes 15 minutes every day to water them in the summer and watch their progress. The sheer amount of blooms from geraniums to marigolds and petunias is beautiful to admire. And it’s those few minutes with nature that get her out of her head and into a serene space.

Michael Hill Jewelry

Jacket: c/o Banana Republic / Pants: c/o Banana Republic / T-shirt: c/o Express / Crossbody: Boktier (unavailable) / Ankle Boots: c/o Naturalizer (similar) / Necklace: c/o Michael Hill / Earrings: c/o Michael Hill

I’m always looking for simple and beautiful moments to help slow life down so that I can really enjoy them. One of the reasons I adore this diamond and sterling silver jewelry by Michael Hill is for its classic design. With a subtle sparkle and shine, these pieces are designed for a touch of everyday beauty. The Twist Circle pendant and Huggie earrings add elegance to any look. While the big, bold, and colorful parts of life are always a pleasure, it’s simplest to find beauty in timeless treasures.

Timeless jewelry with Michael Hill

Blogger Yasmin Hakim in Michael Hill Jewelry

This post is sponsored by Michael Hill. All opinions are my own.