How I took a leap of faith and tips on how to stay motivated while chasing your dreams.

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

When the odds are stacked against you, it can be hard to persevere. I partnered with Olay to share how I break boundaries and rise above to live fearlessly.

I’m motivated by not only the stories around me personally but hearing how strangers are also doing the same! Did you know that only 6% of pilots are female? Tristan shaeres her story in this video along with other amazing women.

To view click HERE.

 I am proud to stand with her and all of the other fearless pilots and females throughout the world! I also would love to share a little of my journey as well:

In June of 2017, I took a huge leap of faith and quit my corporate job to follow my dreams. I loved blogging and working with different fashion and beauty brands so much that I wanted to do it full-time. So far, my business has been booming and I have not regretted my decision to be a full-time influencer ever since! BUT it’s very important to know that my leap of faith to follow my dreams was intimidating and also scary in a sense. I pushed through even when I had some friends doubt me and what I was trying to achieve.

Once you’ve stopped listening to the naysayers around you and maybe in your own head you will be able to overcome the odds. It can also be difficult to stay motivated and keep pushing through. Some tips I’ve used that have helped me to stay motivated are below!

Don’t compare yourself to others.

Don’t compare your chapter one to someone else’s chapter 10. Everyone works at a different pace. Don’t get down on yourself just because you think you’re “behind” in accomplishing your goals!

Chase your dream for yourself.

Never let anyone make you feel as though your dream is unreachable or silly. I believe that we have to be our biggest supporters. You must believe in yourself and what you’re trying to achieve. It’s so important to have tunnel vision when chasing your dreams.

Set goals for yourself.

Goal setting has always worked so well for me. Whether it’s creating a to-do list for the day, making a list of what I need to accomplish in one month, three months, six months or one year, I’ve always found that writing things down keeps me motivated. I then recreate my goals onto a vision board to help me visualize what I want to accomplish. If you can believe it, you can achieve it.

Morning motivation: eat breakfast!

There’s a reason why breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Giving your body the fuel it needs to work is imperative to being successful. Additionally, I like to listen to an inspiring podcast in the morning to help me start my day. I highly recommend Gary Vee!

Take time to unplug.

Giving your body a rest is necessary. Don’t overwork yourself. When you feel yourself lacking creativity or getting frustrated with something that you’re working on, take time to unplug and let your brain rest. For me, I usually will go workout, watch Netflix or read a book to help me get my mind off of what I’m working on and come back to it later with a recharged mind!

How do you rise up and overcome when the odds are stacked against you?

Go ahead, take that leap and don’t stop until you achieve it!

xx, Tonya Michelle

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MY New Favorite Restaurant in NYC, Park Avenue Summer!

If you’ve been reading my blog lately, you’ve seen how much fun Caroline and I had in New York two weeks ago, that we decided to blog all about it in two separate posts. Well, here’s another one on our new favorite restaurant in NYC, Park Avenue Summer!

Park Avenue is an upscale, New American style restaurant that changes with the seasons. Featured during an episode of Gossip Girl back in 2009, Park Avenue NYC is known for its upscale menu items and stunning décor. Every season, Park Avenue changes its name to Park Avenue Summer/Fall/Winter/Spring and with it, their entire menu AND décor to match the season. Caroline’s cousins frequent New York City and raved about Park Avenue NYC, so we had to make a reservation. Somehow, we got lucky and ended up at Park Avenue Summer for lunch during “wine week,” which only happens twice a year during July and September!

From the moment we walked in, Caroline and I were blown away by the summer-inspired décor. We were seated and immediately handed a “wine week” list of wines to try. For only $20, guests can try ten different kinds of wines and when I say try, I really mean a full pour!

Our waiter was so friendly and immediately recommended appetizers to try. He brought us the corn crème brûlée, herbed French fries and a Cured Lemon Caesar Salad to pair with our wine and all were just exceptional. Both Caroline and I had never had crème brûlée before, so we were so excited and blown away by the flavor.

For lunch, we also asked our waiter for recommendations. Caroline knew right away she wanted to try the “free range chicken” with roasted summer squash and grilled lemon, but Vincenzo recommended the crispy chicken sandwich with jalapeño, and bread and butter slaw. Chicken sandwiches and chicken seem like pretty basic menu items, but not at Park Avenue!

Caroline and I immediately agreed—this was the best meal we have ever had. Sometimes, “fancy” restaurants can overdo it on the fanciness, taking away from the flavor of the meal. But Park Avenue Summer was the perfect mix of fancy and tasty and we had empty plates in minutes!

Last but not least, we had to try the dessert at our new favorite restaurant! Vincenzo was adamant about surprising us, and we couldn’t say no. He couldn’t pick just one, so he brought out the chocolate covered strawberry, a strawberry chocolate mousse with pistachio dacquioise and cocoa nib crumb, the mint chocolate sundae featuring chocolate fudge cookies and bourbon chocolate sauce and a coconut ice cream with bits of shaved coconut. Again, the desserts just blew us away! All three were just incredible, we were so grateful Vincenzo decided that we couldn’t have just one dessert, even if our tummies protested from being so full!

With more trips scheduled to New York City in the coming year, we plan to go back to Park Avenue NYC to experience fine dining in every season, and  we can’t wait to share with you our next experience there

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My top 6 money saving apps!

With all of the anniversary and semi-annual sales going on, you’ll need to save some money to pay for all of the fun new clothes you’ll be getting! And who doesn’t love saving money, especially if it’s so easy!

I’ve compiled all of my favorite apps and Google Chrome plug-ins that will save you money while you shop and make everyday purchases!

Drop

This is a newer app that I discovered and one I love. Drop syncs your credit and debit cards that you use every day and asks you to pick five places that you use your cards at consistently. I picked Uber, Lyft, Chipotle, Dunkin Donuts and Starbucks. Whenever you use your cards at those locations, you can redeem your points for gift cards! I just got a $5 gift card to use at Starbucks just by using my cards like I normally do!

Honey

This one is for all of my online shopping addicts. Caroline showed me this Google Chrome plug-in and I don’t know how I lived without it before! When online shopping, Honey automatically searches for coupons in the background and applies them when you go to check out! I have saved SO much money using Honey, and I almost always find a coupon code to use!

Acorns

THIS IS MY FAVORITE!!! For those that have a hard time saving money, this one’s for you. Acorns syncs to your credit and debit cards and automatically rounds up your purchases to the nearest dollar and invests it for you! I have over $4,000 in mine and it’s been almost 2 years. It’s forced savings for those who are bad at saving money and it’s so easy to use! You’ll feel good about saving too. Get $5 when you use my invite link: CLICK HERE 

Gas Buddy

This is another app that Caroline recommended to me. Gas Buddy is an app that tracks your location to show you the lowest gas prices in your area. It syncs to your checking account when you order a Gas Buddy “debit card” and will save you 15 cents per gallon the first time you use it, and 10 cents per gallon every time after that! I haven’t filled up my gas tank without Gas Buddy since!

Cartwheel for Target

For all of my Target addicts! Cartwheel is an awesome app that will show you all of the deals going on at your local Target. Simply add the deals you want to use to your “shopping cart” within the app and pull it up in store when you check out to use all of your coupons!

Shopkick

Shopkick is another app for shopping addicts looking to save money. Tell Shopkick your favorite stores and whenever you go into those stores, all you have to do is “check-in” and you get points that you can redeem for gift cards! I recently redeemed my points to get a gift card for Home Goods! It’s that easy!

Do you have a favorite money saving app?

I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments below.

 

xx, Tonya Michelle

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20-30% OFF my favorite summer must haves!

If you missed my Insta-story take over at @lolashoetiquedolls its ok! I still have you covered. I’ll be sharing some of my favorite Summer must haves and you can also get 30% until tomorrow using code: TONYA at checkout. After Monday 5/28, you can use the code and receive 20% off.

**Please note, their items sell out QUICK. 

First up I want to talk about getting yourself a MUST have two piece – not swimwear, but outfit! Whether it’s a dress or blazer / short suit. They are a great way to look like you have it all together and still feel sexy, haha. Anyone else agree?

I’m wearing a size Medium in the shorts and blazer.

Direct link to purchase the Blazer HERE and the Shorts HERE.

Don’t forget to use the discount code: TONYA for a % off!

A few others that I think are a MUST:

Divinity & Beyond Top – Red Stripe

Divinity & Beyond Pant – Red Stripe

Leisure Pleaser Set – White

Paired this look with one of my favorite heels; Naturalist! These have a thicker heel which to me, gives more support and they didn’t need to be broken in. Win-Win if you ask me. They are under $30 and even a bigger discount when using code TONYA. They come in three colors and directly linked below.

I’m wearing Nude!

NudeTanBlack

Other heels I have my eye on:

Friends or Lovers – Black

Also, don’t forget a clutch! It’s called the Kensington, this is the Rose Gold color.  It’s under $38 before using the discount code. Also comes in three other colors.

Directly linked here for you: BlackCoralRose GoldNude

Personally, I’ll be getting the Coral one next. I love a good POP of color.

A few other handbags I have my eye on currently:

Eden Crossbody – Nude Snakeskin – under $26. 

East Hampton Crossbody – Natural Stripe – Under $33.

This dress sold out SO fast but I was able to snag one in a size Medium. I was SO happy. Like I said above, if you see something you love, you need to purchase. Don’t wait. I’ve learned my lesson this way….haha. I will link some other similar styles that I adore below.

I first saw these heels and was like “YAS GIRL” – haha needed them instantly. They run true to size, didn’t leave me with blisters and didn’t need to be broken in. Again, a must! They are selling out quickly after the Insta-story take over today, two sizes left: shop them HERE.

Similar Styles:

Reality Check in Nude

Reality Check in Black

Other shoes I’m looking at currently:

Sol – In Coral

Steal The Scene – Nude

Saint-Tropez – Coral

Steal My Sunshine Dress – Peach Floral

I’m wearing a size Medium! They have Large left, direct link HERE.

Rocking my Naturalist heels again here! I love how you can easily wear these with almost any outfit.

This looks like a two piece but it’s a dress! Cute right? Here are some of my other favorite dresses they currently have:

Good Vibrations Dress – Yellow

Forever Flawless Dress – White

Tranquility Dress – White

You & I Halter Dress – Black Floral

Tropical Breeze Dress – Green

 

Hope you found a love at Lolashoetique the way I have. Remember to use code: TONYA for any purchases! I don’t get any commission, it’s just them sharing the love with my readers.

xx, Tonya Michelle

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MVMT April Favorites + DISCOUNT code!

April went by so fast and I can’t believe May is going to be this week! I’ve rounded up some of my favorite MVMT watches and sunnies for you today all in this post. All the different ways I’ve styled them and also simply wanted to give y’all a RAD discount code too!

First up some of their newest sunnies:

  1. BACKSTAGE

I rocked these on the beach, with a red dress and even with some black flares. They come in three different colors and are $45 when you use my code!

Direct link to shop: Backstage Sunnies

2. STRANGER 

These also come in black! I love the shape of these and they honestly can go with any outfit. I rocked mine with a graphic t and white jeans! They are also $45 when using my code!

Direct link to shop: STRANGER SUNNIES.

 

Other sunnies that are in right now and affordable:

Watches:

M1: This new M1 style is stunning, smaller band & great for any occasion. Under $100 when using my code! Comes in tons of colors as well.

Direct link to purchase: M1 Watch

This gorgeous pink rose is called RODEO!

Direct link to shop: RODEO

Some other favorites, click on the photo to shop:

LA Brea Marble: Black Marble – Honestly probably my favorite yet! $145 with my code!

Direct link to shop: LA Brea Marble

Here are the other marble watches in their new collection, you can click any photo below to shop!

Don’t forget to use the DISCOUNT code ” tonyamichelle ” to save $15 on any purchase from MVMT!

xx, Tonya Michelle

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Hair Food – Infused with Honey Apricot!

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

I recently discovered Hair Food – I decided to end my evening last night with a good read and pampering myself and my new hair extensions to some extra love! I’m excited to share my review below and thank you Hair Food for partnering with me on this review.

Moisture Shampoo and Conditioner Infused with Honey Apricot Fragrance is the set I decided try. My hair tends to need extra moisture with all the products and heat I have been using recently.

I’m such a product junkie so I’ve been super excited to give these a try. My hair was SO happy – always remember, we take care of our bodies and skin…don’t forget your hair! I also love how the Shampoo products are Sulfate, Silicone, Paraben and Mineral oil free! That is a huge check mark in my book and the way I take care of my hair and my extensions.

I always make my shower or bath experience all about pampering myself and taking time to relax – a good 20 mins of peace is always needed. I love how Hair Food is based around pampering and hydrating your hair!

Let’s dive into the Key Benefits of the Shampoo:

  • Uniquely infused with honey and apricot fragrance
  • Moisture Shampoo is designed for system use with the Moisture Conditioner. Use together for luxurious moisture and nourishment for healthy looking hair
  • Silicone Free
  • Paraben Free
  • Mineral Oil Free

Key benefits of the Conditioner:

  • Cleansing Conditioner Infused with Honey & Apricot Fragrance
  • Lightweight Cleanser that leaves hair smooth and soft
  • A conditioning recipe that gently smoothes the hair cuticle and helps protect hair against future damage
  • Paraben Free
  • Mineral Oil Free

The conditioner didn’t weigh my hair down — which I’m a fan of and personally NEED. I only use conditions half way down my hair to my ends. I don’t apply conditioner on my scalp, only shampoo!

For under $10 each, this is a great way to try a new product and give your hair the love it deserves. They also have some other great products in the line….a few I’m going to be trying in the future as well. Here are a few to keep your eye out for:

Hair Food Root Cleansing Shampoo Infused With Strawberry Ginger Fragrance

Hair Food Renew Shampoo Infused with Apple Berry Fragrance

Hair Food Volume Shampoo Infused With Kiwi Fragrance

Hair Food Gluten Free Color Care Shampoo Infused with Mandarin & Guava Fragrance

Hair Food Gluten Free Quench Shampoo Infused with Peach & Honey Fragrance

You can find Hair Food at your local CVS. Learn more here!

xx, Tonya Michelle

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Inside my stay at NYFW week with Innside by Melia.

Not only is NYC one of my favorite cities EVER — I love finding new chic and incredible places to stay that won’t break the bank. Innside by Melia is a must stay hotel — I can’t wait to share my thoughts below with you. If you’re headed to the Big Apple anytime soon, make SURE you stay here and if you’ve already booked somewhere — at least stop by for lunch, dinner or drinks at the restaurant located in the heart of the lobby. #WorkTripping

I was so excited to grab my room key and start my stay! I was a little early to check in, so I grabbed lunch at the bar and a much needed drink. Can we talk about how cute the bar is?  **warning: Don’t go behind their bar, haha**

Even in the cold temps you can enjoy their “outside” seating, it’s closed in and heaters are above! At night, this area is so romantic — a great date night or even fun atmosphere to grab drinks before heading out for a fun evening. I noticed a lot of people just came to the hotel to enjoy this area. That says a lot!

There is also their gorgeous dining area on the lower level of the hotel. You can enjoy a delicious brunch here as well. Can we also take a minute to appreciate the art? Stunning right? It looked like to be made out of artificial grass. Stunning!!

Woo Hoo!! I got my room key — time for some fun…

Does anyone else love putting on the comfy hotel robe and jump in bed? Innside by Melia had two robes and two pairs of slippers in the room. Luckily, I only needed one of each but having more is always great! I mean, doesn’t this look fun?!

Not only was the hotel lobby, restaurant and bar very clean and chic…the rooms are too. I can only image how hard it is to keep these rooms up to date, clean and on point. They did a killer job. I felt like I was at home in my own space, it didn’t feel like anyone else ever stayed in the room before me.

I stayed in the King View room — two huge floor to ceiling windows, a king sized bed, a work desk and chair, enough room for all three suitcases I brought and more. The build in was my favorite – it had a place to hang all my outfits, store my shoes below, a safe and extra space for my bags, accessories and makeup. I can appreciate when a room is designed to help you stay organized and it doesn’t make you feel crowded.

The bathroom was a decent size as well. I’m all about good water pressure it comes to taking a shower, anyone else?!! No complaints here with their shower. There was a huge drawer under the sink for more storage for hair products, makeup and hair tools! Win-win!

You can see behind me in this photo the storage I was speaking of! Also there is a cute mini fridge built in as well. All waters, juice and sodas are complimentary. Yassss!!! It always bothers me when my room doesn’t have water in stock.

Just some of the other great things they have to offer:

Located in Chelsea and in convenient proximity to NoMad, Garment District, Greenwich Village and Union Square.

Walking distance to famous New York City landmarks such as the Empire State Building, Madison Square Garden, the iconic Flatiron Building, Madison Square Park, and Times Square.

Modern, spacious rooms perfect for business and leisure travelers.

Unique suites with terraces featuring breathtaking views of the Empire State Building.

2 Meeting Rooms with capacity for up to 70 persons total

Fitness Center with outdoor terrace. (Talk about a view!)

I can’t wait to stay again with the Innside. It’s time to kick your feet up, enjoy an amazing stay and not break the bank during your stay. Trust me — you’ll love it!!

 

xx, Tonya Michelle

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My Favorite Products of 2017!

Favorite time of the year: Beauty Round Up!

I tried so many products in 2017 and I wanted to do a round of my favorites! Everything from my favorite makeup products, haircare and skincare. Below you will find a break down of each category and then linked items for you to easily purchase. If you have any questions feel free to reach out or send me a message on Instagram. I love being able to share my favorites with y’all!

MAKEUP:

 

Favorite Lip:

 

Favorite Concealers:

Favorite Eye Palettes:

 

Favorite Foundations:

Light to Medium Coverage

Full Coverage:

Favorite Bronzers:

Favorite Blushes:

AND Real Her Blush Palette (shown in photo above to the left) Direct link to their website is HERE.

HAIR PRODUCTS:

Hair Masks:

Shampoos:

Conditioners: 

Hair Sprays:

Heat Protectants: 

Dry Shampoos:

Also loving Amika dry shampoo but it’s currently sold out every where but EBay!!

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Olay Regenerist 3-step Trio Review

What if I told you that I have a way for you to RESET? It’s only three steps and once you’re done, you will feel amazing!! Trust me, your skin will thank you!

I feel like my skin has been really dry (especially these winters months are brutal) and dull and one of my goals  for 2018 is to have a better skincare routine. This 3-step process by Olay is going to help me stay on track with taking care of my skin! I hope you will give it a try too!

1. Olay Daily Facials: This is 5-in-1 cleansing cloth! These are amazing! You simply activate by running under water. These are great if you want to wash your face quickly, or if traveling. These wipes will take care of that and leave your face squeaky clean, moisturized and fresh!

2. Olay Regenerist Micro-Sculpting Cream: You want to moisturize your skin without being oily or sticky. Well then, you better not skip part two of your reset!! This sculpting cream is IN-CRE-DI-BLE! You will feel glowy and hydrated. You apply on your face and neck.

3. Olay Eyes Ultimate Eye Cream: This awesome 3-in-1 product gets rid of dark circles, fine wrinkles and even some puffiness! Do we all need this or do we ALL need this?! So many of us forget how sensitive our eye areas are and how much we should be taking care of them. Now is the time!

 

So, before you try for yourself, I’ll let you know my personal experience!

Right away, with the wipes, I felt like my skin was really fresh without having the left over residue or stickiness some wipes leave behind. That is a big deal!

In 3 to 4 days, I noticed that I wasn’t dealing with my usual ultra dry skin when I woke up in the morning. It has been SO cold and windy here in DC and my skin takes a beating every year. This sculpting cream is LEGIT! It has long lasting moisturizing effects, but also doesn’t feel sticky or heavy.

After two weeks, I was still continuing with my 3-step process and I really started to see a difference from the Ultimate Eye Cream. As a full time blogger, I am often on my computer for hours. Editing, typing, proof reading, etc. So, some days I can really see it and feel it in my eyes. They look more tired and puffy. But this eye cream helped so much with my under eye circles and the puffiness! I think as I continue, it will get even better, which is SUPER exciting! I hope you all try it out and let me know how it works for you!

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AURA MUGLER + GIVEAWAY

Out of all the fragrances that MUGLER carries, AURA has to be my personal favorite. This scent makes me think of the rain forest and earthiness, but still feminine and powerful! Right now, you get a matching body lotion with the purchase of AURA MUGLER! I love having a lotion that matches my current perfume! I was at New York Fashion Week and I got SO many compliments on this scent! A couple people even asked “Who smells so good?” ME! That’s who!

I have partnered up with Angel by Mugler to help spread the word on their newest fragrance! This post is sponsored but all opinions are mine.

I had 13 hour days during my trip to New York Fashion Week and all I needed was a spray on my wrist and neck. The rest of the day – I was set! Smelling incredible and I loved how it lasted!

 

AURA MUGLER, the latest MUGLER fragrance, invites you to reconnect with your inner nature and to unleash all your femininity and your aura. The AURA MUGLER Eau de Parfum comes to life in an iconic bottle shaped like a universal symbol — the heart, the very source of life and the realm of the emotions. This MUGLER creation is adorned with the brand’s metallic M.

AURA MUGLER EAU DE PARFUM

This fragrance also comes in shower milk and body lotion! This would be a great gift for Valentine’s Day, a friends birthday, or even an addition to a beauty gift basket!

AURA MUGLER SHOWER MILK

AURA MUGLER BODY LOTION

I can’t wait to hear what you guys think of this fragrance and I have a fun giveaway I am hosting with Mugler! Make sure you head over to my Instagram post to enter to win! The winner will be announced on 2/20! Good Luck. Direct link is HERE.

xx, Tonya Michelle

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