Four major, yet important keys to life

Have you ever had a moment of clarity? One evening, I decided to emotionally eat. It is usual for women to over-eat, especially fatty, unhealthy foods before their time of the month. I let my ego get the best of me as I devoured every bite of my pizza and various desserts. As I laid down with an over-full stomach, satisfied, yet sad, I heard my self,“why are you doing this to me?”

 

“Well don’t you like this? Aren’t I making you happy?” I said.

 

No, I’m not. You’re making me sick.” Cue the alarms; I just had my wake up call.

 

The next morning, I listened to an Addicted2Success podcast on my walk to do some errands. I’m a huge fan of this podcast series and it has made a substantial impact in my life. This one in particular features Reverend Michael Bernard Beckwith where he shares tips on how to unleash your inner power.

 

In part of the segment, he mentioned some key points. Fireworks shot off in my head. Perfect timing, I thought, they couldn’t be more true and easier to incorporate into my routine.

 

I find it fascinating that we (including myself) tend to lose sight of what’s truly important in our lives. By practicing these four elements, we will ultimately live better and longer. Also, readers, please feel free to find research that doesn’t say otherwise. The formula is right in front of us; we must search for the tools in order to apply them to balance the equation.

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Eat well

I cannot stress this enough. I felt like I was at my best (eating wise) when I was following a meal plan that was created by my dear Holistic Nutritionist friend. I become health-conscious a bit more every day, and in turn, I know that I need to cut the CRAP- caffeine, refined sugar, alcohol, processed foods out of my diet.
Easier said than done, right? It takes a lot of will power, but once you’re over that hump, you won’t want to return. There are so many delicious food options available at your finger tips, just remember to make a conscious decision as to what you want to fuel your engine with. What will make you perform better? Vegetables, whole grains, and natural protein (meats or legumes, etc) or candy and soda?

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Exercise

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), for additional health benefits, adults aged 18-64 should perform at least 300 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity per week. To break that down, one hour of activity, five times per week. Examples include: speed walking, jogging; swimming laps, aerobic dancing, biking, jumping rope, etc., anything to get your heart beat up and active, on top of muscle strengthening/conditioning two times per week.

Health issues and obesity are major concerns in our society. Let’s hold everyone accountable for getting up and active every day. It’s only to help yourself and everyone else at the same time.

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Meditate

Meditation is something that I have recently accepted into my lifestyle. As a bit of an over thinker, meditation removes my fog and puts me into a positive mind space. I find guided meditations are extremely useful at the beginning. It’s useful to have someone teach you the importance of the breath and its techniques to help calm and silence the chatter. Meditation helps reduce pain, anxiety, and addictions, but improves overall well being. It is truly amazing to connect with your inner self; it has been waiting for you.

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Gratitude

I believe that gratitude is one of the most important factors to success and well-being, by far. Even research has shown that practicing gratitude blocks negative emotions, stress, while developing self-love and appreciation. I keep a gratitude journal and jar. Every morning, I write down three things that I’m grateful for, plus three good things that will happen to me on that day and a daily affirmation. Then I write down one thing I’m grateful for and I place the piece of paper in a jar. At night before I go to bed, I write three awesome things that happened to me and then one thing that would have made the day better. I’m lucky enough that there have been a few times where I say nothing, because my day was already fantastic.

 

 

These four key points are building blocks for a foundation that will allow you to live longer and healthier. Please keep in mind that you (as a soul living in a human body) have a certain amount of years on earth. Why not use and manage your time efficiently to incorporate a routine that allows you to live the best life imaginable? There shouldn’t be any set backs or excuses. You just have to get out there and do it. In order to become the best possible version of yourself, you have to take the necessary steps to get there; you must #DoYourWerk.

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5 Beyonce songs that motivate women

In lieu of the Beyonce concert last night, here are five Bey songs that have left an impression on me and have helped motivate me to release my inner queen. A few of these songs deal with breakups. However, as I am learning to become more in tuned with my self, I am learning how to ‘break up’ with anything and anyone that doesn’t serve me or my purpose.

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Formation

Besides the catchy beat, how can you not be motivated by, “I see it, I want it, I stunt, I dream it, I work hard, I grind ‘til I own it?” It’s because “I slay.” This SCREAMS confidence and an ‘I’m a boss’ attitude, so basically #DoYourWerk and align yourself with positivity until you get what you ask for.

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Me Myself and I

Picture yourself in a breakup situation. You will learn about yourself and your ex and reflect that to the next relationship. (Yes, you will be in a relationship when you are ready!)  Most importantly, the little grieving period needs to implement self-love. Don’t forget that at the end of the day, you are all you have.  B agrees, “Me, myself, and I that’s all I got in the end, that’s what I found out. And it ain’t no need to cry, I took a vow that from now on I’m gonna be my own best friend.”

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Survivor

Classic I’m-over-the-break up song where you realize that your partner was not worth the tears. You’re not going to give up, you’re not going to stop; you’re going to work harder. Because you’re better than that and your mother taught you better 😉 Remember – it’s not worth the stress, move on!

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Irreplaceable

Another break-up song, but it can apply to people and life in general. Anyone in your life is replaceable except for you. You cannot be replaced; there is only one of you. Tune inside to your intuition if you need help realizing this.

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Who Run the World (Girls)

Girls actually run the world. Our mother, Earth, for one. Two, our feminine energy that is in both men and women – think love, compassion, nurturing, and understanding here. I can name famous women, but I want to spotlight you.

“My persuasion can build a nation with endless power, with our love, we can devour.” You can do anything you set your mind to. If you want to build yourself an empire, do it with love. If you want to find a cure for a disease, do it with love. If you want to change the world, do it with love. #DoYourWerk

 
What other Beyonce songs motivate you? I’d love to hear from you.
Comment below or tweet me @thepaigegordon, xo.

An Ode to Women: Don’t Let Your Crown Fall

In lieu of International Women’s Day today, take some time and thank the women who play a role in your life and appreciate the work they do for you. They are beautiful and could always use a little reminder of the importance and luxury of being happy and successful.

The last 100 years or so has been revolutionary for women – from achieving the right to vote, to spearheading the latest discoveries in medicine. Like it or not, all of our roles, men and women, traditional and nontraditional, are important to society and are truly valued, even if no one verbally admits it.

I believe that women are extremely powerful and have a large advantage over men. Ladies, we have the power to carry a child for nine months. We have the power to get what we want by being persistent and driven. We have the power to seduce. We have the power to lead and rule, if we choose. We have the power to invent and explore the unknown. We also have the power to change the world.

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“I love to see a young girl go out and grab the world by the lapels. Life’s a bitch. You’ve got to go out and kick ass.”
– Maya Angelou



It wasn’t until last year when I started to become more aware of myself and realized that I was lacking confidence. It all stemmed back to growing up and I believe that a lot of women can relate. I floated between different groups of friends in school; I threw large parties because I thought it would make me popular, which ended up backfiring. I learned that I needed to get out of that bubble of a city in order to spread my wings, which brings me here today.

In the end, it’s only you, yourself that matters, so be the best possible version of yourself.”

Amongst my latest readings and thoughts, I discovered a saying, which I have chose to live by. The saying goes, “In the end, it’s only you, yourself that matters, so be the best possible version of yourself.” I believe this saying is the truth. It’s your life, and it’s up to you to do whatever you want that makes you happy. Here are a few reminders:

 

Your body is your temple

Like most girls, I would always look at myself in the mirror and wish that I were skinny. Truth be told, high metabolisms don’t run in my family. We’re big boned and have large frames to support our weight. And you know what? I’m fine with that. I do whatever I can to ensure that I don’t end up overweight. I eat healthy, exercise, and drink lots of water (when I remember to!)  That’s ME. I’m different than you and the next person. Our bodies are made differently; genes are definitely a huge factor, but that’s not the end result.
By the time you’re around 30, your body starts to deteriorate and if you don’t take care of yourself, you’re body will respond negatively. Remember that your body is your temple, so nourish it and treat it with love and care.

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Self love

Self-love is an appreciation for oneself that grows from actions that support our overall growth. Be more mindful and remember to protect and forgive yourself. Most importantly, practice good self-care with all of your basic needs.

Take a look at yourself in the mirror. Next, starting with the letter ‘a,’ name a quality that you have. I am amazing. Then, ‘b’, I am beautiful. Continue through the alphabet until you reach ‘z.’ You may have some difficulty along the way; this is a pleasurable exercise to get you thinking on the spot, use your abundant vocabulary and give you an extra jolt of love.

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Confidence

Rapper Lil Wayne said, “I walk up in the world and cut the lights off and confidence is a stain they can’t wipe off.” Confidence is one of the most important aspects to our life, yet many struggle to find it. It’s a learning process that truly takes time to develop. I have my moments, but I remember that nothing good comes from fear and avoiding risks. Look back to your accomplishments and take evaluation of your strengths (and weaknesses). Where do you want to go from here? How will you get there? Use strong, positive mental images and envision your confident self in that role. Not to mention, guys find it extremely sexy when women are confident.

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Stay humble

Amongst our daily rat race and the survival of the fittest, there needs to be a balance. Kindness makes you happier and goes a long way. David Hamilton, author of Why Kindness is Good for You, writes,

“When a person performs an act of kindness, the brain produces dopamine, which is associated with positive thinking. The brain has its own natural versions of morphine and heroine: endogenous opioids, such as endorphins. It is believed that when a person does an act of kindness they feel good on a chemical level thanks to the production of these opioids.”

Always try and remain calm in any given situation and help others the best that you can. They might be able to help you in return.

“The most beautiful woman I have known had one thing in common apart from beauty: humility. It’s a shame that those with less to boast about do it the most.” – Donna Lynn Hope

 

You’re a sexual being

You have the freedom to choose your sexuality. It wasn’t until June 26, 2015 that the US Supreme Court ruled the right for same-sex couples to marry in all 50 states. Do you like girls? Great! Do you like guys? Awesome! Do you like both?  Fantastic! All the power to you. However, never underestimate the female libido. When we engage in acts of sex, we become animals. It’s part of our natural instinct and it’s not something that we can or should shy away from. Men rely on the physical and women value the emotional. Love is a balance. “Women have their ‘sexual peak’ when they’re feeling the most free, energized and tuned into their sexuality,” said Dr. Jane Greer, New York-based marriage and sex therapist and author. “Women are more probably sexually expressive in their 20s because they’re either in an exclusive relationship and/or feeling free to be sexually active.” What are you waiting for, ladies?

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Be in control of your own emotions

You are the only person that will cry if you get hurt. You are the only person that will be upset if someone walks all over you. So, why let others influence your emotions? It’s another story if you’re in a relationship- you have to communicate your emotions with your partner. Your partner can influence a decision, but it’s up to YOU to make a choice. You can choose to be sad, happy, miserable, or radiant.

 

Know when to let things go

There comes a point in time when you’re stuck trying to decide if you want to stay with something or someone, or to let it go. I recommend that if you’re having doubts or if it’s making you sick, crazy, or unhappy, just let it go. You’re using up viable energy and power that can go to other areas of your life. “You do you, boo.”

 

“Think like a queen. A queen is not afraid to fail. Failure is another steppingstone to greatness.” – Oprah Winfrey.  (Thank you, Oprah!) 

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What will you take away from this? Remember to stay calm and confident. Be in control of yourself and your emotions; get all dolled up and strut down the street. Stay humble and give back any way you’re able to. Express your sexual freedom whenever you feel the need to and let things go when it’s time. Remember that you’re only going to go up from here.

 

I want to hear from you! How will you find your voice? Who is your greatest inspiration? Where do you want to be in the next five years? How will you get there?

 

Thank you for reading!
Until next time,

PG, xo.

 

Photo credits: @huffpostwomen, Dove, Women’s Health Mag

Raw, Vegan Turmeric & Ginger Cheesecakes

For the past month, I have adopted my new healthy lifestyle: eating raw and wholesome meals. I’m very proud to admit that it has been a month without drinking alcohol or coffee. Besides snacking on dried fruit and chocolate covered nuts at work, my meals are mostly on point. I spend time preparing my grocery list and meals where it’s now second nature. To tell you the truth, I haven’t felt better.

I’m so grateful to have like-minded friends who share the same perspective on nutrition. I have absorbed a lot of information since working alongside a holistic nutritionist and my own friend who developed my meal plan for me.

I have learned that eating nutritious meals fuels your body like a well oil machine, while processed food will give you some setbacks and a lack of energy. I am aware that this is a lengthy process, however, it will be worth it in the end to be a happier and healthier person. Despite the temptations to drink and indulge with friends, I must continue to persevere and be persistent in my lifestyle.

I found a recipe on Raw Food Recipes and decided to make this ‘interesting’ dessert with one of my vegetarian friends.

Turmeric is an anti-inflammatory that has a distinct, strong taste. I use this spice in a lot of my cooking to help alleviate inflammation and reduce muscle soreness.

Ginger is a pungent-flavoured spice that relieves gastrointestinal issues and boosts the immune system. This anti-inflammatory also protects against some forms of cancer. When combined with turmeric, these two spices are powerful, holistic antibiotics.

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The recipe

Base
– 2/3 cups crushed almonds
– 9 pitted dates

 
Filling
– 2 cups raw cashews, soaked
– 2 tbsp. cup softened coconut butter
– ¼ cup melted coconut oil
– 1 tbsp. fresh ginger
– 1 tbsp. turmeric
– juice of 1 lemon
– 1/3 cup pure maple syrup
– 1 cup water

Caramel
– 5 pitted dates
– 1 ½ tbsp. melted coconut oil
– 1 tbsp. ginger
– ½ cup of water

The super easy process

1) Start with blending the dates and almonds together in a food processor or a blender. We added a bit of water to help the process. Then scoop out an even mixture into a cupcake tray like below. Let this set in the freezer until you’re ready to add the filling.

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2) Blend the turmeric, ginger, lemon, and water so the spices are mixed well. Then add the rest of the filling ingredients until it’s a smooth, creamy consistency. Equally add this to the base and freeze.

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3) Now, you can blend the caramel topping and add it on top and let that set or you can drizzle it on the cheesecakes when you’re ready to serve. Regardless, let this set in the freezer for at least 45 minutes – 1 hour.

 

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4) Serve! We added a pinch of cinnamon and drizzled some raw honey over top the cheesecakes.

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We were really happy with the turn out of these cheesecakes. The turmeric was a little over powering, so if you haven’t had turmeric before, beware of the intense kick of flavour. It’s a nice feeling when you can name all of the ingredients and none of them are processed.

Give this recipe a try if you’re looking for something different. It’ll wake up your senses and leave you wanting more. What are your favourite raw recipes? Comment and share below! We’d love to try them.
~ PG xo.

The art of Tantra and how it can save your relationship

The most precious possession that ever comes to a man in this world is a woman’s heart.” – Josiah Holland

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One of my friends came to me for relationship advice the other day. I’m single, so how could I help her? I can see both sides of any situation. I know what girls want and I know what guys want.

If you’re thinking to yourself that your relationship has lost its spark, or you’re bored of doing the same routine in the bedroom; you’re in a rut. So what can you do to fix that? Let me tell you about Tantra.

Tantra, according to David Gordon White, is the Buddhist and Hindu body of beliefs and practices of the concrete manifestation of the divine energy that creates and maintains the universe and seeks to channel the energy in a creative and expressive manner. Basically, it’s a powerful energy exchange.

History
Historians estimated that Tantra originated around 600 CE and grew between the 9th-14th centuries where there was a power change in India that lead to a rivalry in the kingdoms. This movement led to the formation of schools and helped spread Buddhism through the Silk Road.

Tantra in the west
Popular authors brought Tantra to the Western world by the 60s. As interest grew, it is now seen as ‘spiritual sex’ where it’s believed that sex should be recognized as a sacred act elevating its participants to a higher spiritual plane.

Sex
The Western Tantra teaches slow intercourse that increases intimacy and a mind-body connection that can lead to powerful orgasms. In a sense, you dissolve into one another.

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I attended a seminar on the Tantric Practice of Deep Connection at the Sexual Awakening Centre last night. There, I met Viktoria, a sexuality and relationship coach and a transformational counsellor. She enforces living in the present and being mindful of your inner self and your surroundings. “We as humans must be able to connect physically, mentally, energetically, intellectually, spiritually, sexually, and emotionally.”

 

I was partnered with a girl named Zoe. We had an incredible connection throughout the process and shared warm, happy, positive energy. We did an eye gazing exercise and I felt like I was staring into her soul. We weren’t even touching each other (our hands were a couple centimetres apart) I felt energy coming out of her hands and into mine. I felt fuzzy, calm, and at peace. My eyes shifted at one point and saw her complexion become lighter. Then, Viktoria wanted everyone to release and come back to our centre and close our eyes. All I could see was a white light inside of me. I was relaxed, grounded, and complete; it was very interesting.

 

Eyes are the windows to your soul
You can look beyond someone’s appearance, but what’s inside, is your soul, the flame. When ignited, it is one of the most powerful sources of energy.
Now, I know some of you might think that this is lame, or it won’t work; give it a chance. It’ll take you to a place of ecstasy that you never thought existed.

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Try this eye gazing exercise with your partner:

  • Face each other (fully clothed) and gaze into each other’s eyes. Focus on their left eye with your left eye, then think of a word or a feeling you want to send them (happy, warmth, excited, etc.)
  • Synchronize breathing- breathe in together and exhale together.
  • Hold hands or let your hands almost touch.
    Do this for about 5-10 minutes and see how you feel.

Now, try this in the bedroom without clothes. Once you feel a shift in energy, work your way to touching, kissing, and foreplay until you progress into different sexual positions. Don’t forget to maintain eye contact. Over time, you will be able to develop the ability to prolong your orgasm; you remain at the peak of pleasure without climaxing, which can last for many minutes or even hours.

 

It’s unfortunate that we tend to forget to focus on our partner. A relationship works two ways and not one. Both should give the same amount of effort, if not more, in order to receive and build a solid framework. If we all implemented Tantra in our day-to-day lives, our relationships and pleasure will intensify. The deep breathing connection creates a heartfelt level of intimacy, allowing you to feel closer to your partner. The slow pace will bring you more pleasure and satisfaction enabling your practice to further beyond a typical orgasm.

 

I met a couple last night that has been married for over 20 years. They meditate together, have grandchildren, and have just discovered the power of Tantra. Listening to the feelings they felt after each of the exercises was quite intoxicating. To this day, they still share that same raw passion they first felt as newlyweds. They’re madly in love with each other and I wish them all the best.

 

Now, I challenge you to sit or stand in front of a mirror. Place your right hand over your heart and look at yourself in the mirror. Stare into your soul through your eyes for a few minutes. Don’t over think this. What do you feel? What are you trying to tell yourself? Let me know, I’d love to hear what you have to say.
~ PG, xo.

 

Click here for further information on Tantra Tuesdays at the Sexual Awakening Centre.
Sources:

  • Smith, Brian K. (2005), “Tantrism: Hindu Tantrism”, in Jones, Lindsay, MacMillan Encyclopedia of Religion, MacMillan
  • White, David Gordon (ed.) (2000). Tantra in Practice. Princeton University Press.
  • Urban, Hugh (2003). Tantra: Sex, Secrecy, Politics, and Power in the Study of Religions. University of California Press

Welcome to Networking 101

I would like to thank my friend Brian for giving me the idea to write this post.
We were at a friend’s birthday party on Saturday and he had a name tag on the left side of his chest from an event earlier that day.

I said to him, “did you know that your name tag should go on the right side of your chest because that’s the hand you use in a handshake?” He smiled and agreed.  The next time you shake hands with someone, pay attention to the direction you’re looking at. If you’re shaking hands with your right hand, you’ll gaze in the opposite right direction, and vice versa.

Networking can be a little intimidating at times. It’s a lot of fun and it gets easier with practice. Keep these eight tips in mind the next time you attend a networking event.

Set expectations
What is it that you want to get out of the event? Do you want to feel the vibe of an organization? Or do you want to meet five new people? Don’t break your promise to yourself by getting discouraged; this is your time to shine!

Practice your story
Describe yourself in 30 seconds or less; think of this as an elevator speech. If a potential employer met you in an elevator and asked what you do, what would you say? Practicing this speech consistently will give you the confidence to continue the conversation.

“May I join you?”
As an ambivert, I have my shy and outgoing moments. I enjoy attending networking events by myself because it takes me out of my comfort zone. At first, it took me a lot of courage to join circles of people, (because I didn’t want to interrupt the conversation) but all it really takes is, “may I join you?” Everyone at a networking event is there for one reason: to build a network- stand in a circle, listen intently and contribute to the conversation when a topic applies to you.

Ask for an introduction
You spot an acquaintance you’ve met before talking to the CEO of a multi-million dollar company you’ve been following on Twitter. You ask for an introduction; now it’s up to you to build rapport and converse to establish a relationship- plain and simple.

Do your research
If there’s a panel of speakers at an event, research their Twitter and LinkedIn so you can get an idea of who they are as a person and what they can offer you. More importantly, if you share a common interest, that will be a helpful spark in a conversation.

Be engaged
Listen intuitively; nod your head and reassure the speaker that you’re actively listening. When you start a conversation, don’t attempt to do an awkward business pitch. Instead, ask the person why they attended the event. Dig deeper and ask about their line of work and what they like about it. Once you have formed a relationship, it will be easier for you to talk about yourself; they will be interested in you because you were interested in them.

Business cards
Don’t hand out your business cards to anyone. If you feel like you have developed a connection with someone and want to take your relationship to the next step, hand him or her a card. It also helps to write down any important information acquired on the back of the card. For every networking event I attend, I bring at least 10 business cards with me so I can determine how many people I meet. At the end of the day, I would rather talk to one or two people that I can really get to know, but it doesn’t hurt to set high goals.

Follow up
After any meeting or event, you MUST follow up within 48 hours. Simply send a quick email saying you enjoyed meeting them and reflect back on a point in the conversation. It doesn’t have to be long or formal, just get the ball moving. For a more personal touch, send them a handwritten thank you card. Also, add the person on LinkedIn. Who knows? One connection can open multiple doors; it’s up to you to figure out which door you want to open.

What’s your ritual before a networking event? Comment below if you have any other networking tips; I’d love to hear them. Enjoy your day and happy networking!

~ PG, xo.

BALMAIN X H&M hits stores today

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Today is the release of Balmain’s H&M collection. It’s funny when I first went on their website, I was blocked due to the number of people trying to access the site. I can’t imagine what it’s like in stores.

This wasn’t the first collaboration H&M has had with a top designer; Alexander Wang released his line for H&M last fall. I think it’s a great idea that H&M is working with top designers to make high-end designs more affordable for the general public.

These are my top 5 looks from the Balmain x H&M Collection:

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A short, fitted deep V-neck dress with different shades of green sequins. There is a chunky gold-coloured zipper in the back and at the cuffs. Pair this with gold accessories.
Price: $199

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These Mulberry silk-satin trousers are perfect for the office and for going out. They have a high waist with deep pleats and a tapered leg. These would look very classy with a tailored blazer and heels.
Price: $119

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This faux-fur leather coat is a head-turner. The detailing at the soft-leather collar mixed with the fun green fur and decorative designed waist belt will keep you warm in the next few months. Dress this with leather leggings and a nice silk blouse and heels; you’re perfect for a night out.
Price: $179

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The detailing on this Mulberry silk blouse is stunning; the chest pockets are concealed with embroidered beads and sparkly stones. Pair this with leather leggings for an edgy look.
Price: $149

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Kylie Jenner wore this dress with a belt and high boots to the Balmain x H&M fashion show in NYC. This short fitted velvet dress is made from a silk blend that’s embroidered with beads and sparkly stones with zippers at the cuffs and back. You can continue with Kylie’s look and pair this dress with high boots.
Price: $649

What are your thoughts about this collection? Have you tried anything yet? Comment below.

~ PG, xo.