48 hours in Chicago!

When my bestie Victoria asked me to go to Chi-town with her for a quick trip, I jumped on it. If you haven’t noticed I try to travel once or twice a month. Not only to experience and make new memories but because I love sharing my favorites places and recommendations! It was a fast turn around but we had a blast, ate some amazing food and took some great photos. So, let’s dive in.

We checked into Loew’s hotel Chicago (the one located 455 N Park Dr, Chicago, IL 60611 ) – it’s affordable and beyond stunning. Between the decor and atmosphere it reminded me a lot of one of my favorite NYC hotels. A place where you can work in the lobby – also grab a bite to eat and a drink.

Soon as we arrived we headed straight into ETA Restaurant + Bar – ordered breakfast, a smoothie and felt recharged. I had my usual, the American breakfast (I ate it all, it was beyond amazing!) V had the avocado toast and chicken sausage! Highly recommend – service was also great. Even being busy they didn’t make you feel like it was a hassle. Much appreciated.

Checked into our room & the view was priceless. V was super excited cause she’s never had a room with a crazy view before. I think since she’s been to NYC afterward that’s now a thing…. a room with a view is a must!!

We got changed, fixed our selves up to be presentable and then headed out to explore. We did a little shopping at Moon Voyage, it’s a local boutique (2010 W Pierce St East) – I got a cute sweater and skirt, V purchased a gold ring with her initials on it “VIE” You can see it here. We explored and found some cool graffiti art – of course had a photoshoot LOL.

We decided to head to the Sky Deck — first off, if you guys don’t know I’m going to tell you: I’m afraid of heights. But I’m so glad I went and did it, def won’t be doing it again but I’m glad, HAHA. I think the scariest part was the elevator ride (60 seconds takes you up 103 stories) YIKES.

We then looked for the best pizza in town!! We landed at Gino’s East. We walked in there around 5:30pm right before the rush. I ordered everything basically, I was starving. We ordered: Pizza Breadsticks, Fries, Chicago Fire Pizza (Hot and spicy patty-style sausage, fire roasted red peppers, red onions) and Spinach Margherita Pizza (Spinach cheese blend, cherry tomatoes, fresh mozzarella, basil) & some beers!

Headed back to the hotel for some drinks at the hotel bar, watched the Steelers lose, got some computer work done and then crashed!

Day 2

Well after not having the best life choices and drinking each a bottle of wine the night before we were so sick we couldn’t eat the breakfast we ordered. LOL Wish I was kidding. We were pretty mad at ourselves.

V headed to her hair class for Bombshell Extensions (the ones I wear and love!) So I ventured out for a little on my own.

I got myself together and headed to meet my friend Roxanne for lunch! Roxanne is known as @glassofglam on Instagram and she moved to Chi-town from D.C. recently.

I was super excited she had time to meet up while I was in town! She recommend Summer House Santa Monica – Honestly she killed it. This place was stunning and the food was delicious to say the least. I just discovered as I’m typing this they have one in Northern Bethesda! Ok, I’m pumped and def diving to Maryland for this.

After, headed back to the hotel and decided to have myself a spa day. I went to the Spa on level 3 — booked myself a 50 minute massage and a 50 minute body wrap. Both were incredible. I fell asleep and twitched like 4 times, haha. Highly recommend their spa if you’re local or staying there.

We met back up after and decided to head to dinner! We used the hotels concierge service (which again, highly recommend). Ended up at Katana, only locations being West Hollywood, Chicago and Dubai! It’s tapas style eating which was perfect for us, we got to try so many different items. Our favorites:

  1. Sunomono – spicy marinated cucumbers
  2. Premium edamame
  3. ishi ebi no tempura (popcorn rock shrimp tempura, miso glaze)
  4. Shishito Japanese peppers (soy garlic sauce, bonito)
  5. SKEWERS wagyu kosho (american wagyu new york, black pepper sauce), Suzuki (chilean seabass) and Ebi bekon (jumbo shrimp wrapped in bacon, chili garlic sauce)

We also got sushi but it wasn’t anything mind blowing. We would of gotten more skewers instead! I honestly forgot to take photos of most so bare with me but I would 100% recommend you trying this restaurant. I wish we had one in the D.C. area.

After we walked a few blocks to the Chicago theatre for some photos and shopping. Stopped at a bakery and wasn’t a fan, I sadly didn’t even eat my cupcake and the place smelled weird when we walked in. LOL.

Chicago is so beautiful during christmas – all the lights, decor that the buildings put up is stunning. Even the display windows at Macys.

It was a quick and fun 48 hours – honestly much needed! Hope y’all found some new places to go while in Chi-town or if you’re local to the area. We headed back to D.C. and I’m already ready to go back for more.

A few of my travels favorites and must haves!

The luggage that I’ve been using for over a year now: Gabbiano Luggage 

Comes in a 3 piece set! It’s held up from ALL my travel. No cracks, no broken wheels and etc. I highly recommend them. I also just got their new set is beautiful and made from Aluminum – Linked HERE.

xx, Tonya Michelle


Continue Reading

NEW Dove Dermacare!

Sponsored post by Mirum. All opinions are my own. 

The fall weather is my favorite. The air is so crisp and cool and I get to break out my favorite jeans, sweaters and boots! However, with the fall weather brings dry air that leaves my skin, namely my scalp, feeling dry, itchy and flaky at times. 

You all know that I have been using Dove products for forever. Their gentleness to my sensitive skin is unmatched, not to mention their prices are always low so that I don’t have to compromise to feel fresh and clean. When Dove announced their NEW Dove Dermacare 2-in-1 Anti-Dandruff shampoo and conditioner, I was SO excited to try it out!  You can too here: shpp.in/1jplei63b

 

Taking care of your skin is so important. For healthy hair to grow, you have to take care of the skin on your scalp as well! When your skin is dry and itchy, usually your scalp is too, creating dandruff that can be embarrassing, especially with my dark hair it can be extremely noticeable. 

There are times that I have to shoot an outfit on a moment’s notice or look perfect for a picture and there’s nothing worse than feeling like I can’t do it when my scalp is feeling dry and dandruff flakes are visible in my hair. But thanks to Dove’s new Dermacare 2-in-1 Anti-Dandruff shampoo and conditioner, I no longer have to worry about that! 

Dove’s products have always been affordable, but BJ’s prices are unmatched. I purchased Dove’s new Dermacare shampoo and conditioner at my local BJ’s and hope you all will.

xx, Tonya Michelle

Continue Reading

Say goodbye to puffy, tired eyes with Clarins!

This post is sponsored by Clarins USA, however, all thoughts and opinions are my own.

This time of year, when it gets dark so early, I feel as if I’m tired ALL of the time! Can anyone else relate? My skin gets drier and tired looking, my under eyes get puffy from allergy season, accompanied with dark circles from feeling tired all of the time. Luckily, I found a product that has helped with ALL of that!
Clarins’ new Super Restorative Total Eye Concentrate is a plant-powered, all-in one, sulfate free formula that targets puffiness, dark under eye circles, gives your eyelids a more “lifted” appearance, and even helps to smooth fine lines and wrinkles, leaving your under eyes looking younger and brighter looking. What more could you ask for in an under-eye cream?!


The all-natural ingredients of, Organic Harungana Extract, Cassie Flower Wax, Tetrapeptide and Albizia work together to improve the appearance of your under eyes in as little as seven days. The Organic Harungana Extract helps to restore the appearance of density, while the Tetrapeptide creates a more “lifted” look. To combat the puffiness, the Cassie Flower Wax smooths the appearance of the under eye area while the Albizia works to combat dark circles and puffiness.


To apply, warm the product between your finger tips and gently press under your eyes moving from the inner corner outward, from temple to temple. Repeat again above your eyes on the browbone and that’s it! This product is perfect for anyone with sensitive skin, combination skin or oily skin and should be applied morning and night for maximum results.


I’m so glad I found a product that targets all of my under eye insecurities this time of year and leaves me feeling confident to take on the day!

xx, Tonya Michelle

Continue Reading

Say goodbye to tired eyes with Olay’s NEW Brightening Eye Cream.

This blog post is sponsored by Olay, however, all thoughts and opinions are my own.

There’s nothing worse than hearing, “you look tired!” Maybe you got a full eight hours of sleep and you’re not even tired, dark under eye circles just run in your family! Or you packed on your favorite concealer and not even that can hide the fact that you pulled an all-nighter for work.

 Introducing my new skincare holy grail for under eye circles: Olay’s NEW Brightening Eye Cream!
I have been exhausted from traveling so much lately, especially to different time zones which contributes to my lack of sleep and therefore, my dark under eye circles. Sometimes, my favorite concealer just doesn’t cut it, so I was thrilled to find a product that worked for me. In just a week, it’s really helped me look not so tired from being on the go so much!


The lightweight formula, with Vitamin C, Niacinamide, Vitamin B3, Pro-Vitamin B5, and Vitamin E anti-oxidant complex and Optic Brighteners hydrate your skin and smooth and illuminate it, so you can fool everyone else that you’re well rested, even if you’re not.

In addition to my lack of sleep on occasion, my olive skin tone can leave the areas under my eyes darker than usual. Olay’s new Brightening Eye Cream has really helped combat the darkness under my eyes, even if I’m not suffering from lack of sleep.


I put this cream on under my eyes in conjunction with my regular skincare routine. It fits into my normal routine so seamlessly that it was basically fool-proof to use. In the morning following my cleansing and moisturizing, I put a small dab of Olay’s Brightening Eye Cream under my eyes and gently massage it into my skin in little upwards motions. The difference is almost instant!

I then apply my makeup for the day if I’m going out and no one would ever guess I didn’t sleep well last night.

You can find the Olay Brightening Eye Cream at CVS or here!

Are you dealing with bad under eye circles? Let me know in the comments below!

This content is sponsored by Olay. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

 

xx, Tonya Michelle

Continue Reading

How to turn a bad hair day into a good one

The worst part about starting your day is realizing you’re having a bad hair day. Bad hair days can totally ruin your day…until now. I’m sharing my secrets on turning a bad hair day into a good one!

Dry Shampoo

The first thing I do when I wake up with a bad hair day is try some of my favorite dry shampoos. Eva NYC, Living Proof are my go-tos and Not Your Mother’s is Caroline’s favorite. They instantly transform a greasy hairdo into one that looks like you just washed it!

Anti-residue shampoo

If you’ve gone a few days without washing your hair or your shampoo and conditioner seems to not be working lately, try this amazing anti-residue shampoo from Neutrogena. It’s affordable and totally transforms my hair. Caroline swears by it and I can always notice a HUGE difference in her hair when she washes it at least once a week with this shampoo!

Invisibobble and bobby pins

Another hair-hack for a bad hair day is simply throwing it up in a bun or ponytail and calling it a day. Recently, I have been obsessed with Invisibobble. The clear or hair-colored coils keep your hair from kinking up, so you don’t need to commit to keeping your hair up all day because of all the kinks in your hair. Additionally, bobby pins can bring a somewhat boring hairstyle to the next level with these cute and fun ones I found on Ulta. They keep frizzy hair at bay and out of your face and look cute doing it, too!

Hairspray

There’s also nothing worse than styling your hair only for it to fall flat later. These hairsprays are my favorite for keeping my curls or blown out hair in check.

Also, I get so many questions on how I curl my hair and what tools I’m using. I currently use all curling wands, straighteners and blow dryer from ONE brand. Click HERE to shop them.

Have a favorite hair product that can transform your bad hair day? Let me know in the comments below!

Continue Reading

Sephora & Ulta Holiday Gift Guide! $15-$100! + gift card GIVEAWAY.

Tonya and I picked our FAVORITE items perfect for stocking stuffers and gifts during this Holiday season. Below you will find gifts from Sephora and Ulta ranging from all different price points, whether it’s for your sorority sister or mother-in law!

We also decided to give away a $100 gift card to either store if you comment below with your favorite item from the list. For an extra entry, post this blog post in your insta-stories and tag @tonyamichelle26 (so she sees it) and you’ll be entered with 5 extra entries. Contest will run from  11/6/18- 11/20/18 (winner will be announced on the blog post and in her insta-stories)

Sephora

$25 and Under Price Range

 

$50-100 Price Range

 

Ulta

$25 and Under Price Range

$50 + Price Range

 

We will have more fun gift guides coming soon – perfect for your significant other, friends, and the one friend who loves to be comfy at home.

xx, Tonya & Caroline

Continue Reading

When do you feel the most empowered as a woman?

This blog post is sponsored by Britney Spears Prerogative Fragrance. However, all thoughts and opinions are my own.

When do you feel the most empowered as a woman? For me, it’s putting together an amazing outfit and rocking it. My style changes daily, whether I wake up and rock yoga pants or if I’m decked out from head to toe in bright colors or sequins. I feel empowered by being able to express myself by my style! For others, it might be a goal or a dream accomplished.

That feeling of confidence is evoked as a sense of smell in Britney Spears new fragrance, “Prerogative.” The scent is fit for every budget so that all women AND men can enjoy the feeling of confidence and determination to be whoever you want to be. Yes, it’s UNIsex!


I have built my entire brand off of being unique and truly myself. When I heard of Britney’s new fragrance, I couldn’t wait to try it! Not only does it smell amazing, but it gives me the confidence to be myself in a way that all women should feel! With notes of Pink Pepper, Goji Berries and  Apricot Nectar, this fragrance is unique and confident, just like Britney and those who wear it. You can find the fragrance at Kohls – Priced perfectly between $32-42 depending on the size you’d like! I also think this is a great gift for the Holidays coming up! Shop HERE.

I often am asked how I built my own business and started from the ground up by just doing something I am so passionate about. Defying labels and expectations is what Britney Spears’ Prerogative fragrance is all about.

Be unique and be confident and you can do whatever you want to do in life. I love Britney’s message behind this perfume that resonated so deeply with me that I couldn’t wait to share it with you all.

xx, Tonya Michelle

Continue Reading

Stay Fresh all Season long with Summer’s Eve.

This post is sponsored by Summer’s Eve®, but all opinions and/or content is my own.

The fall weather is my absolute favorite. However, the beginning of fall bringing cool mornings and hot afternoons wreaks havoc on my skin not to mention my body. It can be so hard to dress in the morning and by mid-afternoon I’m taking off all the layers I threw on in the morning because I’m sweating so much! That’s why I use Summer’s Eve®, so I can feel fresh all day and on the go!

One of the most important parts of my health is using pH-balanced products on my intimate area. Summer’s Eve is a perfect example of that. Many women do not know that everyday activities such as exercising or even being on your period can leave you feeling less than fresh. Summer’s Eve® is pH-balanced and designed to helpyour body feel fresh!

I’ve been using Summer’s Eve® products for as long as I can remember, so I was so excited when they released their new Simply Summer’s Eve® lavender + chamomile cleansing wash! It’s free from dyes, parabens and alcohol so you can feel comfortable about what you’re using on your body. Not to mention it smells amazing and leaves me feeling fresh for the rest of the day.

If you’ve been following along on my Instagram stories, you know how many traveling nightmares I’ve experienced this summer with being stranded in an airport for hours upon hours! I was always so thankful I packed my Summer’s Eve® coconut water cleansing cloths with me.

These individually wrapped cloths are perfect for on the go. When I got stuck in the airport and I couldn’t shower, I could at least feel clean in the areas that are important!

The cloths are also perfect for travel. When I’m at a hotel, I pack a ton of these wipes in my suitcase so I can freshen up when I don’t have time to shower, which is also so useful at the gym!

Make Summer’s Eve® a part of your hygiene routine. You’ll feel fresh all day and can take on your day-to-day without feeling self-conscious of odors that prevent you from feeling confident!

How does Summer’s Eve® make you feel fresh?

Continue Reading

How to feel confident wearing sleeveless styles!

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Dove. The opinions and text are all mine.

Now that summer is coming to an end, I’m in the process of transitioning my wardrobe to fall! Fall fashion is my favorite and one thing I love about it is how I can bring some of my favorite sleeveless styles into the fall with layering. Thanks to Dove, I feel confident wearing my favorite sleeveless styles.

When I was a teenager, my Mom first introduced me to Dove deodorant and I never looked back.

Dove is a product I’ve used my entire life, even before I was a blogger and did any collaborations! It provides 48-hours of odor and wetness protection, plus added skin care benefits for softer, smoother underarms which I can absolutely attest to! I always get so many compliments not only on the outfit I love, but on my underarms! I don’t have dark underarms and they’re always so smooth thanks to Dove Advanced Care

My favorite sleeveless style to wear is a halter or strapless dress or jumpsuit. They have been my go-to summer styles and with the right color combinations, can easily be worn during the early fall months as well.

Another favorite of mine are athleisure tank tops. I wear workout tanks on a regular basis around the house, running errands or working out. I always feel so confident knowing that when I’m running around getting things down, I won’t have embarrassing pit stains thanks to the 48-hour antiperspirant!

When I’m on the go, I like to use the Dove Dry Spray. It provides 48-hours of odor and wetness protection with all the care of Dove, while going on instantly dry, so I can apply on the go without waiting for it to dry so I can throw on a top and go!

Thanks Dove, for always being there for my underarms and keeping me confident in the styles that I love!

Follow along with Dove to learn more about their new products and how they can benefit your hygiene as much as they’ve benefitted mine!

FacebookTwitterInstagram

xx, Tonya Michelle

Continue Reading

Why I’ve chosen to use Clarins Double Serum for over a year!

This post is sponsored by Clarins, however, all thoughts and opinions are my own.

I’ve partnered with Clarins to bring you my results of using #MyDoubleSerum one year later and how amazing my skin is now!

One year ago, I wrote a blog post introducing you all to Clarins’ new double serum. Click HERE to read. I told you my shocking skincare results after only seven days. Now, I’m back to tell you what my skin is like after using this product one year later!

First, let me tell you all about Clarins Double Serum, the holy grail of skin care. At first, I was very skeptical about a product that promised results after only seven days. But I actually noticed a difference in my skin after only three days!

The best part about Clarins Double Serum is that its ingredients are all natural, plant-based ingredients that combine to improve skin texture, boost radiance, firm, tighten and even skin tone while fighting wrinkles for younger looking skin. The 21 skin nourishing plant extracts include turmeric, great for your body inside and out, to protect and restore skin.

Another plus is that Clarins has formulated their Double Serum to be a perfect match for any age and any skin type! You don’t need problem skin to see the benefits of this amazing product. It also fits right into your normal skin routine! Right after cleansing and before moisturizing, use Clarins Double Serum and not only will your skin thank you, but you will notice your other products working better as well.

One year later, Clarins Double Serum has changed the way I feel about my skin. I always try to remain transparent and honest when it comes to my skin, telling you all about my struggles with adult acne has made skincare a priority for me.

I’ve noticed a drastic difference in my skin over the past year. I feel more confident going makeup free and I’ve been getting so many compliments on my glowing skin, which used to be one of my biggest insecurities!

Having a consistent skincare routine has helped my skin tremendously improving the texture and overall appearance of my skin. Knowing that I’m using a plant-based serum gives me confidence knowing that I’m not using harsh chemicals on my skin.

So, what’re you waiting for? Give Clarins Double Serum a try! Your skin will thank you.

xx, Tonya Michelle

Continue Reading
1 2 3 8