You guys! A little birdie told me that Shopbop is having a MAJOR sale right now until this Friday 9/29. And not just any ordinary sale – I’m talking sitewide discounts! Everything on their website is on sale…. I know, I can’t handle it either. This is the perfect opportunity to shop items that normally sit in my shopping cart that I never check out. Also, the perfect opp to shop key items, like coats, bags and shoes – items I would wear over and over again that will actually get good wear out of throughout the year that will never go out of style.
The temperature has finally dropped below 70, feels cooler (a lot cooler) outside, and we are in the clear to say that it’s beginning to feel a lot of Fall! Yay! Anyone else just as excited as I am about this?! With a new season comes new trends and new wardrobe… obviously. Hello Fall, Hello red!
I’ve been seeing a lot of reds and maroons, pant suits, and color blocking play EVERYWHERE, epsecially on my Instagram feed, and quite honestly not surprised either. One in particular that has grabbed my attention is the color red. Red is such a powerful color. It makes such a strong statement alone, and easy to create an effortless outfit when you’re in a rush. It’s definitely one of my go-to colors right now for this season. If you know me you know that I steer far from a bold lip or any darker hues when it comes to beauty, however; as you grow, you tend to develop new loves and interests, and red has definitely grown on me. One that I happen to keep wearing over and over again. I’ve found myself wearing red more often than usual. If you asked me last year what my go-to wardrobe and beauty palettes were, I’d probably say neutrals and of course black. I’m very particular with adding pops of color in my wardrobe. Fast forward to today, I’m for sure playing with more colors and adding new tones in my life both wardrobe and makeup – and I ain’t mad about it.
What are some of your favorite Fall trends at the moment? What are some trends you’re currently wearing that you never thought you’d wear before? Would love to hear them.
Before I get into this topic, I wanted to start off by saying how very thankful and blessed I am to be a part of this blogging community that once didn’t exist nor was considered to be a real job. I meaaaan, is this real life?! I am very fortunate and grateful that I have turned a hobby into my career. And all of this would not be possible at all whatsoever if it weren’t for the continuous support of my blog and social media friends – YOU! Thank you.
Now where were we…? Oh yes!
Social media is really funny. While no one most do not like to share anything negative on social media (speaking for myself as an influencer), it’s really easy to judge someone based off what they choose to share on social media. This goes without saying, don’t believe everything you see on social media – DON’T! Especially when you see all these amazing trips bloggers go on. Wait – let me rephrase that. Blogger trips ARE indeed fun and am forever grateful for every opportunity I have had as a blogger, however; it isn’t always what it seems to be.
Here’s what really happens behind the scenes on these blogger trips that we don’t talk about…
Before blogger trips:
Work on media kit and proposal letters. Outreach to brands to partner with me during my trips. Whether this is for complimentary stays in hotels, accommodations, or sponsored post collaborations. I love a free trip just as much as the next person, however, free doesn’t pay my bills. At the end of the day, I gotta eat.
Style my outfits beforehand. Taking photos of each look will help and make your life easier when shooting back-to-back photos.
Have inspiration photos to make sure I capture the content I and/or the brand is asking for.
Pack the essentials: camera (very important), chargers (very very important), the product I am shooting, etc…
Scout the location and area I am traveling to: hotel, outside of hotel, restaurants, shopping centers, etc. for outfit photos. Backgrounds are key.
During blogger trips:
Start documenting EVERYTHING on SnapChat, Insta-stories (because if you didn’t snap it, didn’t even really happen?!), Instagram, Vlog, and Blog.
Start creating content: outfit photos, product, etc.. depending on the collaborations.
Make time to eat in between shoots.
Then begin editing content, and start posting on Instagram.
By this time, I have yet to enjoy the hotel, location, beach. To be completely honest with you, I have yet to really enjoy the hotel pool when I travel. Every Most photos I have shared on social media laying out on the beach or lounging by the pool have only been for a quick second or for the gram. I’ve never actually done any of the above in “real life” during my trips – lol. Sounds silly when you think about it. Sounds even more silly as I’m typing this post. But that’s blog life. That is my life when traveling for work.
After blogger trips:
Catch up on real life for a little bit. Then get back to work.
Begin uploading all of your content, and start editing.
On top of that – catch up on other work: respond to emails, follow up, prep for upcoming shoots and other collaborations, etc.
Although I have yet to master this whateveryouwanttocallit, I have learned that setting aside a few hours in the morning to shoot everything, has definitely helped me enjoy the rest of my stay. And as much as I try to set a plan and shoot all content first thing to get it out of the way, things always come up and not everything goes as planned. Life, right?! There’s a lot of work that is put into all of these trips and vacations. A lot of people don’t understand or realize that these trips are a lot of work and a huge part of our jobs. Creating content isn’t just taking a photo. It’s not as easy as point, shoot and upload. It’s so much more than that. It’s a lot of work but a lot of fun, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.
I love posting in real time on social media as much as possible because it feels more authentic and right for me, but that’s not how it always works out when traveling. So one thing I have learned and would advice any other influencer is to post all your travel content after your trip to fully enjoy your stay. This will make it feel more like a vacation and less stressful. As a creative, you always have to make sure you are in a happy place and stress-free in order to produce and create amazing content.
PLEASE NOTE: this post is in no way of me complaining. I am simply sharing with you all what happens prior from posting vacation photos on Instagram, and during these trips, and the amount of work behind it that you don’t hear about. I love what I do, and my goal was to turn what I love doing into a career. Beyond blessed.
I’m pretty sure I left out a few other things, but this is just to give you an idea of what goes down behind these blogger trips and vacations. If you have any questions or feedback on this topic, feel free to leave a comment. I’d love to hear your thoughts, tips and what works for you when traveling.
I can’t think of a better way to spend the last couple of days of Summer than with Wet in Malibu. The first thing that comes to mind when I think of summer is the beach. Summer is one of my favorite season for obvious reasons – the weather. I can seriously live in bikini tops underneath my clothes all days of summer.
I decided to hit the beach with one of my favorite blogger babes Enocha.
I partnered with Wet Swimwear to share with you all some of my top favorites pieces. This was a tough one to narrow down because they have the best swimwear collection with so many different styles and prints to choose from.
From endless bikini and one-piece options to a nice variety of cover-up pieces, Wet swimwear never fails to bring you the best of the best for warmer temps. And as you all know, I love when items double for more than one purpose, and can take you from day to all your night time festivities, so I was pretty pumped to find out that Wet carries not only a wide assortment of swimwear, but cover-ups that can be worn as outfits (insert clapping hands emojis here and here).
For instance, this beautiful black romper is not only perfect as a bathing suit cover-up, but also serves as a romper for a night out. Just add a strappy sandal or mule heel, and you are good to go and ready for a girls night.
You better believe that I will be wearing these pantalones when I’m not lounging by a pool or beach. They are so cute and would look great with a crop top, hat, sandals… I’m picturing my next off-duty OOTD right now.
Rest assured I’ll be taking this kimono cover-up dress out on the town. White cami underneath with a pair of cropped skinnys and a low-heel sandal. Done and done.
Before we get into today’s post, happy Tuesday! I hope everyone enjoyed the long holiday weekend, because I know I sure did! Is it just me or did it felt like it was the shortest weekend ever though? If you follow my Insta Stories, you know that I had the most Sundayest Sunday of all Sundays.
Ok, let’s do this….
For those who have been following MelRodStyle for awhile, you know that I’m always on-the-go, and am always up for quick getaways. If there’s any talk of a girls trip or plans for one, you bet you can count on this lil gal to be there. Enocha and I decided to take a very last-minute girls trip to The Oaks at Ojai, which was approximately a two-hour drive. Though it was a very spare-of-the-moment getaway, it worked out perfectly, especially since it would be my last trip with Enocha until she returns from her trip to London (insert crying emoji).
We stayed in a Double Courtyard Suite located in a private corner behind the pool area, which included a private patio entry. I loved that it was secluded because I was really looking forward to nothing but a peace and quiet trip.
The Oaks at Ojai offers an extent list of activities and services, such as Yoga, Pilates, Tai Chi, Qigong, along with facial and body treatments. Their mission is to provide their guest with an environment that encourages your healthy goals of all kinds, including your eating and exercise habits. The Oaks provides healthy meals and snacks throughout the day, along with yummy smoothies and desserts, as well as offer fitness and calorie conscious meal programs customize to fit your needs.
During our stay, we made sure to make time for a facial. We got the Vita D Brightening Facial Treatment, which included a marine based mask that helps firm and lift the skin, along with Vitamins B5, C, D, E and K to protect and hydrate the skin. It was heavenly.
The rest of our stay was very relaxing and spent most of our time by the pool lounging. This quick trip was exactly what I needed to unwind and recharge. Thank you to the team at The Oaks for a wonderful experience. I had an amazing time.
As a fashion and lifestyle blogger, I am invited to many events throughout the week, and while they are all so much fun, my favorite events are the ones that involve food…don’t judge me. If there’s an event with food, I’m totally there. You can find me chasing the waiter around with the platter of hors d’oeuvres. To be honest, my favorite influencer events are the brunch ones (hashtag sorry not sorry). So naturally, when I was invited for a tasting at the Sapphire Pantry in Laguna Beach, there was no hesitation. I was definitely attending!
If you follow me on Instagram @melrodstyle, then you might’ve seen on my stories all the food we were able to taste. Sadly, I didn’t get to take photos of every dish (hence why I am not a food blogger), because my belly could not wait #STORYOFMYLIFE, but we had the following from their breakfast menu: OATMEAL, TRADITIONAL SANDWICH (hickory smoked turkey, scrambled egg whites, tomato, whole wheat bread), BREAKFAST TACO, BREAKFAST BURRITO, BUTTERMILK PANCAKES, PB & J FRENCH TOAST (ahhh insert drooling emoji here), SMOKED SALMON SANDWICH, and so much more. Just thinking about all the food we I devoured is putting me back into a serious food coma.
If you are ever in the area or are planning to visit Laguna beach, I highly recommend giving them a visit because their food is incredible, and their staff and manager were the friendliest.
My Thoughts on Loop Giveaways and Like / Comment Pods
I miss the days when Instagram was easy, stress-free, and not having to worry about how to go around the “new algorithm changes” (literally rolling my eyes as I type this). Remember when you could get 600 likes with less than 10k followers? Or when your feed wasn’t controlled by Instagram’s new formula? Nowadays, you can have 100k followers with only 600 likes, if that (smh).
With the new changes, one must find ways to stay relevant in the blogger world. In other words desperate times calls for desperate measures… I’m talking about Loop Giveaways that have been all over your feed (guilty), and Like/Comment Pods (keep scrolling to read).
As much as it’s annoying to see nothing but loop giveaways on my Instagram feed, I think it is appropriate to do one or two, not three in a day or in a week. Spread them to throughout the months. I made the mistake of doing two within two weeks only because I didn’t realize how close the giveaways were going to be (my bad). I won’t be doing that again.
Although a lot of people have their own thoughts and opinions about loop giveaways and are not fans of them, I am here to say that I see both sides. Some may think it’s like buying followers, but I have to disagree because someone actually ends up winning an amazing gift, while buying followers will only get you fake/ghost followers. These loop giveaways have their pros and cons.
Pros: Influencers who participate in these giveaways have a chance to gain more exposure from a wider audience, which means more followers. This is a pro, especially on a brand’s perspective since, unfortunately a lot of brands care more about quantity versus quality.
Cons: After the giveaway is over, you lose followers (not all but most), which is pretty standard and expected.
It really depends on how you look at it. The way I see them is that it definitely helps your blog/Instagram get recognition. The new followers might not have even known about your blog or Instagram, which can help in your advantage if they like your feed and stick around. OR, perhaps these accounts who are entering these giveaways are just in it for the free stuff (also pretty normal), and are only following for a chance to win, period. It’s really difficult to gage these loop giveaways, but I suggest every influencer who is trying to build their account to try a giveaway to see how they like it. If it didn’t matter about the number of followers you have on Instagram, then none of the above would be relevant. Unfortunately, as a full time blogger (I’ll speak for myself) we have to make sure our numbers keep growing and our engagement is high, which leads me to Like/Comment Pods…
Would I do another loop giveaway? Yeah, maybe. Maybe not. I don’t think the loop giveaways helped my account at all. If anything I gained a ridiculous amount of followers during the last loop giveaway I participated in, and am still losing followers (most likely followers who were just looking to win something and not necessarily like my account) now – but I can’t stress about it. I know why I’m losing, and it’s because of the other accounts who participated in this same loop giveaway. If I learned anything about these giveaways, it’s that you need to make sure that the other accounts are similar to yours or relevant. You can’t have an account who is promoting cleaning supplies be in the same giveaway as someone who focuses on fashion, beauty, etc… Also, a lot of these accounts that were a part of the same loop giveaway as I was were international, which means the majority of their followers only spoke Spanish or a different language, and since I speak mainly English, of course they would not stick around. It didn’t make sense. I understand that 100%. Again, my bad. I’m definitely going to try to host more giveaways on my own and see how that works out. Not only for exposure but for my followers because I luv ya. 😉
LIKE / COMMENT PODS
For those of you who are not familiar with these pods, they are DM groups through Instagram or through the Telegram app (I’m sure there are others) with different bloggers who share their Instagram posts for the group to like and or comment on each other’s posts. It’s another way to support one another. I briefly mentioned my thoughts about it on my 5 Instagram Pet Peeves blog post. Very similar to my thoughts on loop giveaways – I’m not against them. My only issue is when other bloggers do not catch up, meaning like or comment on your posts. The way it works is that you must be caught up with whoever is involved in the group by liking and or commenting before sharing your posts with the group. Some follow rules, while most do not… this is based off my experience by the way. I had to leave a few groups because I felt like I was abiding by the rules while others were using lame excuses like “sorry no wifi, will catch up later” yet still share their post. This topic is silly, really. And I’m sure more for those who are reading this who are not bloggers, but this is the blogging world we live in.
Anywho, these are my thoughts on loop giveaways and like/comment pods based off my experience. I would love to hear your thoughts and comments.
Backyard parties and BBQs are so much fun. Hosting these parties can be quite the opposite though. Being a host takes a lot of effort and is a lot of work. The good thing is that there is no right way to host a party, and there are no limits to hosting a cool party either.
Whether you love being the hostess with the mostess, or if the idea of hosting a party stresses you out, but are planning a get-together at your place anyway, then don’t worry. I’ve listed a few tips that help me prepare a fun, stress-free party.
Whether you’re hosting indoors or outdoors, here are just a few hosting tips based from my experience that can help you plan a very smooth party this Summer.
Clean & organize throughout the week leading up to your party. This will help relieve stress, and avoid feeling overwhelmed the day(s) before the big bash.
Prepare cocktails in advance, and always keep wine and/or champagne refrigerated. Options is key.
Avoid serving difficult/messy dishes, meaning try to stay away from dishes that will get all over the place, specially if it’s a kid-friendly party. Stick to tried-and-true recipes because trying something new the day of your party can go really really bad. Or try maybe hiring a taco man or ordering out.
Have enough food and drinks.This is George’s tip by the way. Know approximately how many guest you are planning to expect.
Be ready early. Set aside enough time for you to get ready. The last thing you want is to be in the middle of blow drying your hair while your guest are all waiting around bored AF.
Having an outdoor bathroom is SO CONVENIENT. This will help you keep your place inside clean and have to worry less about cleaning more areas in your home. Trust me, an outdoor bathroom is life changing lol. But don’t worry if you don’t have an outdoor bathroom. This tip doesn’t apply to everyone. Perhaps rent a portable bathroom if you are trying to avoid indoor foot traffic.
Make sure to have enough seating areas in your backyard for your guest to be able to relax. If you’re limited on chairs, maybe lay out blankets, pillows and cushions to create a floor seating. It’s the easiest and perfect way to add extra seating.
Entertainment is very important. Create a music playlist and have it playing before your guest arrive. Have games out for guest to play, such as corn hole or even drinking games. Obviously if you’re hosting a kid-friendly party then have something to entertain them as well. Or if you don’t have any kids (like me), but your friends do, then maybe advice the parents beforehand that you do not have anything to entertain them with, so suggest for them to bring their own toys.
Put away anything valuable or anything you do not want to get ruined, ESPECIALLY if you are expecting kids to attend.
Have a cocktail and relax because you’ve worked so hard. After all, you’ve earned it. CHEERS!
I hope you find these tips very helpful for your next get-together. If anyone has any tips to add on, please feel free to comment as I’m always looking for new recommendations for hosting a successful partay!!!
All home decor are from H&M and are listed below to shop!
When I wake up every morning, the first thing I look forward to is a cup of Nespresso. It’s no surprise that I am a serious coffee aficionado. Coffee plays a big part of my everyday routine, and if you follow me on Instagram, then you’d agree that my feed is filled with lots of coffee and latte drinks. I am thrilled to be partnering with the Nespresso “One Touch to Extraordinary” VertuoPlus to share how I elevate my mornings with simple pleasures of coffee.
I truly believe that you’ll have an amazing day if you begin your morning on a good note. If your mornings already feel rushed, then most likely you will end up having a very hectic day. It’s all about positive vibes and good energies and pausing even if it’s for a few minutes. It’s so easy to get caught up in life and not take a moment to yourself. I know I am guilty of it, especially since I am always on the go – whether it’s to meetings or photo shoots one after another, events or traveling. It’s easy to rush out of the house and not take “me time”. Which is why I’ve made it a priority in my everyday morning routine that as soon as I get up, right before beginning my day and being glued to the computer working nonstop, I set aside 20-30 minutes to have a seat and enjoy my Nespresso. And in those moments, I like to catch up on my reading – or sometimes do absolutely nothing but pause and enjoy some quiet time… just me and my Nespresso.
The VertuoPlus’ one touch to extraordinary is so easy to use, because with the touch of one single button, you can make the most out of your mornings while enjoying the best coffee – and who wouldn’t want that?! It’s so convenient having the VertuoPlus’ in my life, especially since I’m constantly on the move.
I alternate between a hot and iced cup of Nespresso coffee in the mornings depending on my mood. May I add that I make an AWESOME iced cinnamon latte?! With that said, I’m so excited to share my iced cinnamon latte recipe. Cinnamon is one of my favorite spices, and this drink is inspired by my recent trips to Mexico. It is really easy and simple to make, and perfect for summer.
Iced Cinnamon Latte Recipe
1 ½ cup of ice
1 capsule Voltesso
1/8 tsp of Ground Cinnamon
1 tablespoon of almond milk or of your choice (try cashew milk for a sweet alternative)
*** I don’t add creamer because I like the natural taste of my Nespresso and don’t want it to overpower the taste or take away from it.
Brew capsule with ice already in cup.
Add milk of your desire at the end.
Followed by cinnamon on top.
Add a straw, stir and enjoy!
A special thank you to Nespresso for helping me get the most out of my mornings, because a good day starts with Nespresso.
*This post is in partnership with Nespresso but all thoughts and opinions are my own.
It’s clearly no surprise that Mexico has won my heart the past month or two. I’ve traveled to Mexico in the last couples of weeks more times than I have EVER. Don’t believe me? Click here, here,here… oh and here.
So when I had the opportunity to visit Puerto Vallarta (for the 2nd time in a month by the way), I instantly jumped at the thought. I practically already had my bags packed, totally kidding… kinda.
We stayed in the most charming, romantic, breathtaking, jaw-dropping… you name it. I can literally keep going…boutique hotel – Casa Kimberly. And when I mean charming and romantic, you would think Enocha and I were on our honeymoon. No, but in all seriousness, Casa Kimberly is the perfect place to stay for a quick romantic getaway, but also great for a girl’s trip. I wish I knew about this hotel before because George and I would’ve stayed here for our honeymoon in a heart beat. Not to mention, the food, the service and every detail of this place was just so spot on and amazing. Just talking about it makes me miss this place so much (insert crying emoji here).
Besides the GORGEOUS hotel, everything around the hotel was walking distance to the main spots in town. We were just a few blocks away from El Malecon and the beach… can it get any better than that?!
Puerto Vallarta, once again you blew my mind away!