Category Archives: everyday faves

Everyday faves: Fast drying top coat polish

It’s time for a new entry in my now-monthly series about “Everyday faves,” to highlight everyday, or commonplace, things — or practices or habits — that make a difference in my life. For me, these posts are an exercise in self-reflection and appreciation.

Fast drying top coat

Last month, I highlighted the silver tray I use to store my nail polishes. This month, it seemed fitting that I highlight the nail polish I use EVERY SINGLE TIME I paint my nails, my fast drying top coat.

Librarian for Life + Style | Everyday faves, fast drying top coat

I never used to wear a top coat, because I was super impatient when painting my nails as a teen and in my twenties. When I hit my third decade, I transitioned into being super impatient with instant chips in my polish and manicures that didn’t last, so I started scouting out clear top coats in order to extend the life of my self-manicures. And a top coat really does make a difference!

I am still pretty impatient when it comes to painting my nails — call a spade a spade, right? — so I’ve found a fast drying top coat is the perfect compromise to balance extending manicure but doing it as quickly as possible. Enter my favorite clear top coat, the Seche Vite dry fast top coat.

Librarian for Life + Style | Everyday faves, fast drying top coat

Librarian for Life + Style | Everyday faves, fast drying top coat

If you’re a longtime reader (thank you), then you will have seen photos of this top coat before. I include it in a lineup of polishes whenever I do a nails post:

Librarian for Life + Style | Mellow yellow + gold flecks mani/pedi polishes

Original post:  Mani/pedi in shades of gold

Librarian for Life + Style | Sparkly 4th of July manicure polishes

Original post:  Updating my easy 4th of July manicure

Librarian for Life + Style | Rose-tinted metallic polishes

Original post:  Rose-tinted metallics

I am now on my second bottle of Seche Vite top coat polish. I have found this brand at Walgreens or Target or Sally Beauty Supply stores, costing a range between $8.50 and $10. It’s definitely a bit more spendy than other nail polishes, but in my opinion, it’s worth the investment to extend the life of your manicure or pedicure. It also provides a lovely glossy finish to your polish, and tends to even out any lumpy bits.

Librarian for Life + Style | Everyday faves, fast drying top coat

Do you give yourself manicures or pedicures? Do you use a top coat? Please leave a comment and share 🙂

Exploring more everyday faves

Want to explore more of my “everyday faves”? Past posts in the series have included:


Linkups:  Hello MondayVisible Monday#iwillwearwhatilikeShoe and TellConfident TwosdaysTurning HeadsStyle With a SmileWho’s Wearing What WednesdaysTrendy WednesdayWhat I Wore WednesdayI Feel Pretty WednesdaysWeekly Wednesday Fashion Linkup,  Whatcha Wearing WednesdayTop of the WorldThursdays Fashion FilesThursday ModaCelebrating StyleFashion FridayPassion for FashionFun Fashion FridayCharming FridayFriday FavoritesFancy FridayFine-Whatever LinkupWeekend Wear Link Up#SaturdayShareLinkUp

Everyday faves | Nail polish tray

Everyday faves series

It’s time for a new entry in my now-monthly series about “Everyday faves,” to highlight everyday, or commonplace, things — or practices or habits — that make a difference in my life. For me, these posts are an exercise in self-reflection and appreciation.

Posts in the series have included:

Tray for nail polishes

This time for the “everyday faves” series, I’m highlighting the silver tray I use to store my nail polishes.

Librarian for Life + Style | Everyday faves, nail polish tray

Where I got the tray

I first highlighted this tray back in 2014, in my “Pretty, practical, pretty:  A view of my dresser” post, when we lived in Portland. As I said back then:

The silver-worked tray is another item I picked up in the UAE, and I used it then for the same purpose I use it for now:  to store perfume and nail polish. It also ensures that I keep those two collections small enough to fit in this tray!

I found this tray in Abu Dhabi, at Lulu’s, one of their chains that’s akin to our Target. It’s one of the few non-jewelry items we took back with us from the UAE. We didn’t want to bother shipping furniture or anything big or heavy back to the U.S., so we focused on taking back whatever would fit into our suitcases when we moved back.
Librarian for Life + Style | Everyday faves, nail polish tray

Librarian for Life + Style | Everyday faves, nail polish tray closeup

I still use the tray to store my collection of nail polishes, which is larger than my collection of perfumes. (I only have 3 perfumes at the moment:  Chanel No. 5, a gift form my mom; Burberry London, which is almost out, and a couple of musky vanilla scent freebies from Aveda). I currently have 15+ nail polishes, which all fit into my little silver tray.

Librarian for Life + Style | Everyday faves, nail polish trayLibrarian for Life + Style | Everyday faves, nail polish tray closeup

The tray, which is most likely tin or aluminum, is not that ornate or attention-getting in its design, but it’s sweet and pretty to my eyes, and it brings a smile to my face. Most importantly, the tray reminds me daily of our time in the UAE and our happiest memories spent there, every morning when I get ready for the day. And that feeling is priceless. ♥


Linkups:  Hello MondayVisible Monday, #iwillwearwhatilikeShoe and TellConfident TwosdaysTurning Heads, Style With a SmileWho’s Wearing What WednesdaysTrendy Wednesday, What I Wore Wednesday, I Feel Pretty Wednesdays, Weekly Wednesday Fashion Linkup,  Whatcha Wearing WednesdayTop of the WorldThursdays Fashion Files, Thursday ModaCelebrating StyleFashion FridayPassion for Fashion, Fun Fashion FridayCharming FridayFriday Favorites, Fancy Friday, Fine-Whatever LinkupWeekend Wear Link Up#SaturdayShareLinkUp

Everyday faves | The cream to my coffee

Everyday faves series

It’s time for a new entry in my now-monthly series about “Everyday faves,” to highlight everyday, or commonplace, things — or practices or habits — that make a difference in my life. For me, these posts are an exercise in self-reflection and appreciation.

Posts in the series have included:

The cream in my coffee

This month, I am highlighting the cream in my coffee. I haven’t always been a coffee drinker; I used to only drink tea. (And I still do drink tea a lot.) My husband, who likes to say he has coffee running through his veins, converted me to coffee a few years ago. (I have always loved the smell of coffee.) While he prefers his coffee black, I prefer mine with cream and sugar, or — the best of both worlds in my opinion — flavored coffee creamer.

Librarian for Life + Style | Everyday faves, coffee creamer

Instagram pics of my coffee (and books)

If you follow my Instagram feed, then you’ll already know that I’m a coffee drinker. I have posted pics that include coffee cups or mugs, including:

Librarian for Life + Style | Instagram coffee pic

Librarian for Life + Style | Instagram coffee pic

Librarian for Life + Style | Instagram coffee pic

Current coffee creamer

I’ve tried different kinds of flavored creamers throughout the years, but my current favorite is Darigold in the french vanilla flavor.

Note:  This post is NOT sponsored by Darigold or by anyone else. I wanted to share my use of Darigold creamer with my readers via my “Everyday faves” monthly series.

Librarian for Life + Style | Everyday faves, coffee creamer collage

Morning coffee ritual

My husband sets our programmable coffee machine each night, for whatever time I need coffee in the morning. (My schedule varies throughout the week.) He usually sets it for about a half-hour before I have to head off to work. I get dressed upstairs first, then head down for my morning coffee and then finish getting ready. I really enjoy this simple daily morning ritual:

  • Setting out a coffee cup.
  • Getting the creamer from the fridge and pouring a little creamer into the cup.
  • Pouring the coffee in and seeing it turn a caramel color.
  • Seeing the steam rise off the top and disappear into the morning air.

Bliss.

Librarian for Life + Style | Everyday faves, coffee creamer collage

And yes, it’s SUPER important to me to put the creamer in FIRST, before pouring the coffee in, not after. Same goes for creamer or milk in tea. That way, the milk or creamer doesn’t curdle — which can happen when a cold substance hits an already hot substance, like if you poured the creamer in after you poured the coffee — plus you don’t have to bother about stirring the creamer around. Pouring in the coffee automatically swirls and stirs the creamer around. No need to dirty up a spoon! Yes, I am very practical, and proudly so. 😉

And now, it seems like a good time to have some coffee…

Librarian for Life + Style | Everyday faves, coffee creamer

Do you prefer coffee or tea? Do you have a preference for cream, sugar, etc.? Please leave a comment and share!


Linkups:  Hello MondayVisible Monday, #iwillwearwhatilikeShoe and TellConfident TwosdaysTurning Heads, Style With a SmileWho’s Wearing What WednesdaysTrendy Wednesday, What I Wore Wednesday, I Feel Pretty Wednesdays, Weekly Wednesday Fashion Linkup,  Whatcha Wearing WednesdayTop of the WorldThursdays Fashion Files, Thursday ModaCelebrating StyleFashion FridayPassion for Fashion, Fun Fashion FridayCharming FridayFriday Favorites, Fancy Friday, Fine-Whatever LinkupWeekend Wear Link Up#SaturdayShareLinkUp

Everyday faves | Native deodorant

To celebrate my 5th blog anniversary, I’m personally hosting a giveaway for 5 lucky winners. This is the final day to enter the giveaway (!), so visit this post for all the details on how to enter. I will announce the 5 winners tomorrow.

Everyday faves series

This is the latest entry in my now-monthly series about “Everyday faves,” to highlight everyday, or commonplace, things — or practices or habits — that make a difference in my life. For me, these posts are an exercise in self-reflection and appreciation.

Posts in the series have included:

Native deodorant

This month, I’m highlighting my love of the all-natural, non-toxic deodorant from the Native brand. And this is probably the most literal entry in my “Everyday faves,” series thus far, since I wear deodorant EVERY DAY. 😀

Librarian for Life + Style | Everyday faves, Native deodorant

Going Native

Back in February, I posted on my Facebook page about first trying out the deodorant that I had read good things about. (Of course, now I can’t find the posts and articles I had been reading earlier this year. Murphy’s Law.

Librarian for Life + Style | Facebook post about trying Native deodorant

After trying out the deodorant for a couple of months, I posted a follow-up on my Facebook page:

Librarian for Life + Style | Facebook post about trying Native deodorant

You can read more customer reviews of Native products here on their site.

Switching over to an all-natural deodorant

Librarian for Life + Style | Everyday faves, Native deodorant

I chose two scents, because they were doing a special discount at the time if you bought two or more deodorants. I chose the “Lavender & Rose” scent and an Unscented one just in case I didn’t like the “Lavender & Rose” one. I do like the “Lavender & Rose” scent, and it’s not overpowering at all. The sticks came in this cardboard shipping box, seen above, and the box arrived in just a few days. Gotta love free AND fast shipping!

Both deodorants are in my medicine cabinet now, and I use each stick about equally. I just go with the scent — or unscent — depending on my mood each day. (I’ve also noticed they have seasonal scents available at different times.)

There was a card enclosed in the package, seen below, with tips for how to transition to using the Native all-natural deodorant. It does take a bit of time to make the switch, for your body to adjust. It felt like it took me a couple of weeks, but it didn’t feel hard at all to transition. I just felt a little extra sweaty the first week or two.

Librarian for Life + Style | Everyday faves, Native deodorant

Does it work?

In a word, YES. It worked for me, at least. I waited a couple of months to write this review and post, because I wanted to make sure I really could recommend Native deodorant. And I do recommend it. The peace of mind alone is worth it, knowing that it’s non-toxic, aluminum-free and paraben-free. (There’s also a sensitive option, for those sensitive to baking soda.)

I still sweat when I’m wearing the Native deodorant, which is natural, but I don’t stink by the end of the day. (Thank goodness!) I put it on the morning, about three swipes back and forth, and then I can just go about my day. It’s AWESOME. Plus, it doesn’t seem to be leaving any gross residue so far on the underarms of my shirts and dresses. I used to use the “invisible” type of deodorants, like from Secret or Lady Speed Stick, but when it came time for laundry day, I would STILL find a build-up of white residue on the underarms of my dark shirts and dresses. I have not found that kind of residue build-up on my clothes thus far after two months of wearing Native deodorant.

I honestly don’t think I will ever go back to regular deodorants. I am a #GoNative convert. An all-natural deodorant that WORKS. It’s like the magical unicorn of body care products.

Get a free travel-size Native deodorant

If you’re also interested to #GoNative, then you can get a FREE travel-size deodorant with your next purchase by clicking this link. Plus, Native ALWAYS has free shipping and free returns.


Note:  For full transparency, this post is NOT sponsored by the Native brand. I’m writing about Native deodorant because I truly use it every day and love it and want my readers to know about it. However, please know that the link above is a referral link. This means when you get a free travel-size deodorant, then I’m eligible to get one, too. #GoNative!


Have you used an all-natural deodorant? Do you have a favorite brand that you swear by? Have you tried any that didn’t work for you? Please leave a comment and share!


Linkups:  Hello MondayVisible Monday, #iwillwearwhatilikeShoe and TellConfident TwosdaysTurning Heads, Style With a SmileWho’s Wearing What WednesdaysTrendy Wednesday, What I Wore Wednesday, I Feel Pretty Wednesdays, Weekly Wednesday Fashion Linkup,  Whatcha Wearing WednesdayTop of the WorldThursdays Fashion Files, Thursday ModaCelebrating StyleFashion FridayPassion for Fashion, Fun Fashion FridayCharming FridayFriday Favorites, Fancy Friday, Fine-Whatever LinkupWeekend Wear Link Up#SaturdayShareLinkUp

Everyday faves | Wrinkle releaser spray

This is the latest entry in my now-monthly series about “Everyday faves,” to highlight everyday, or commonplace, things — or practices or habits — that make a difference in my life. For me, these posts are an exercise in self-reflection and appreciation.

Posts in the series have included:

This month, I’m highlighting my love of wrinkle releaser spray! (That’s an odd sentence out of context. Maybe it’s still an odd sentence, even when in context. 😉 )

Librarian for Life + Style | Everyday faves, wrinkle releaser spray

Just like in last month’s post about Static Guard spray, I have at least two bottles of wrinkle releaser spray at hand at all times:  a full-size bottle and a travel-size bottle. The full-size bottle I keep upstairs, and the travel-size bottle I keep in my bin of travel toiletries, near the downstairs bathroom.

Also, it’s funny looking at the list of previous “Everyday faves,” and there’s are a couple of themes when you put together my love of stain sticks, static cling spray, and now wrinkle releaser spray. One, I love getting travel-sized stuff. Two, I must seem like a very messy, rumpled person. Or rather, I am trying to prevent looking like my naturally messy, rumpled self. 😉

Here’s how the spray works. First, you hang or lay flat an article of clothing that’s wrinkled. This is a cardigan of mine that’s been on the floor in the laundry basket for over a week, so it’s a good candidate for this demonstration. Next, spray the area that’s wrinkled — and not just a light misting or spritz, but a thorough spray over the wrinkled areas.

Librarian for Life + Style | Everyday faves, wrinkle releaser spray

Then start smoothing out the wrinkled areas, stretching the fabric across and down. (I usually do this with both hands, but I had to use one hand this time to take pictures.) It really is best to do this step right away, instead of waiting a few minutes to let the spray “soak in” and then trying to smooth out wrinkles. You need to get to smoothing out the wrinkles immediately. Let the clothing item air dry for a few minutes after.

Librarian for Life + Style | Everyday faves, wrinkle releaser spray

Does it work? Below is a side-by-side comparison, before and after using the wrinkle releaser spray on my wrinkled cardigan. There’s definitely a difference!

Librarian for Life + Style | Everyday faves, wrinkle releaser spray

I always take my wrinkle releaser spray with me while traveling, especially if it’s for work. No matter how well you pack, your clothes will have at least some wrinkles. So adding a travel-sized wrinkle release spray to your toiletries is super useful, and much easier and quicker to do than ironing. If you’re a longtime reader (thank you!), then you’ll know I loathe ironing. Loathe. So much so I’ve basically designed my lifestyle and wardrobe around avoiding ironing as much as possible. (This is also why I purchased a steamer, which I talk about here in this post.)

And I don’t have a set brand that I prefer for the wrinkle releaser spray. I just reuse the travel-sized Downy bottle and refill it with spray from the larger bottle of whatever wrinkler releaser brand I happen to have on hand. I have personally found no difference between using generic and brand-name wrinkle releaser sprays.

Librarian for Life + Style | Everyday faves, wrinkle releaser spray

Do you use a wrinkler releaser spray or something similar? Please leave a comment and share!