I am a sucker for anything monogrammed or anything with my sorority letters on it. I have seen this fabulous company I'm about to introduce you too around the blog-o-sphere since I started Royally Pink and fell in love with them.

My Capital Letters is a fabulous online shop where they sell acrylic monogrammed and greek lettered jewelry, keychains, and accessories.

Started by Aimee in Fall 2012, My Capital Letters had been a dream of hers for a while. Her story on the About Us page of My Capital Letters is inspiring and fun, she had a dream and a passion and she got to work.

For the past year, MCL has taken off and is in over 90 retail stores all over the country. That is true success!

My Capital Letters has such a wide variety of of products and designs, everything from solid colored monogrammed keychains to cuff links and home decor. I could spend hours looking through the site and trying all the different cute color combinations that are offered.

The great thing is there is not just acrylic items but regular jewelry as well, such as this beautiful Cross Necklace  and this Engraved Charm Bracelet . I'm in love!

My Capital Letters just joined with Franseca Joy to feature her designs on their jewelry and I've never been so happy about something in my life. Look how beautiful these designs are!

It's not just monograms that My Capital Letters has but Greek Jewelry as well. My favorite is this State Greek Necklace--how adorable and clever to honor your state and your sorority at the same time? 

My next purchase will be one of these gorgeous necklaces; I need more monograms in my life. My Capital Letters is my new obsession and I hope it becomes yours too!

MCL and Aimee are so sweet and wonderful they are giving away one FLOATING MONOGRAM PATTERN NECKLACE to a lucky Royally Pink reader!! I am so excited for this giveaway and hope you are too!!

The winner will get to pick the font and color of their necklace so get to looking!

Sorry for being MIA yesterday; it's been a tough first week of classes.

This is a very late post but my editorial calendar for the blog has been jam packed.

Earlier this month I received my last Ipsy Glam Bag; after some much needed cutting back on my spending habits, Ipsy and Birchbox both lost. If I do renew one of these subscription boxes down the line, it will be Birchbox--I just enjoy it better.

But, my last Ipsy bag was a great one! It was a "Glamour Academy" themed bag and I think this might've been by favorite little bag yet.

Purple and gold are one of my favorite color combinations and I love the little Ipsy insignia that this one displayed.

1. Michael Todd Charcoal Scrub

The first product I received was a Michael Todd Charcoal Scrub. I used it for the first time last week and it was strange. It wasn't a cleanser as I previously thought it was; you just rubbed the scrub into your skin AFTER you used your regular cleanser. It made my skin feel dirty but I did notice a slight difference in the morning when I woke up. I'll have to try it again. I was happy with the size of this; it wasn't a foil packet but a hearty sample size which is always nice.

2. Chella Eyebrow Pencil

I've received another Chella product a few months back, a Chella highlighter pencil. This month another Chella pencil made it's way into my Ipsy bag; the brown eyebrow pencil is a little thin for my liking and I'm just learning how to properly tame my eyebrows but it's a great quality pencil that has been working good! This was the only full size sample in my bag as these eye pencils usually are.

3. Mica Eyeshadow in Bronze

I have yet to use this bronze eyeshadow because with the hot weather, I haven't used much eyeshadow. Also these loose powders scare me and I never really use them too much because they sometimes are too pigmented and they are so messy. With the cooler weather approaching, I will definitely get back into the swing of things and use eyeshadow more regularly and this will be first on my list. This was a tiny sample but I definitely think it'll be enough to use and see if I like. 

4. Pixi Lash Booster Mascara

Another product in my bag that I haven't used yet; the brush is ultra thick and it seems like great formula so I'm excited to try this out. With unpacking and getting settled in my room, I keep forgetting I have these awesome beauty products! This was a typical sample size mascara, not too big but enough that it could give you a month or so use. 

5. Urban Decay Revolution Lipstick

My goodness, I was so thrilled when I found that this would be in my Ipsy bag. I love Urban Decay and was so excited to try out this new lipstick collection. It was a very tiny, tiny sample but I didn't care! The shade I got was very pink and very pigmented, not sheer in the slightest. It may even be a little too pink for me but the formula is wonderful; it's smooth and moisturizing and not sticky. I will definitely be using this more, even if the color is a bit strong!

Ipsy will be missed but this was one heck of a way to go out!

About a month ago I was contacted by Nicole, the lovely CEO and founder of Darby Smart to become a Darby Smart Editor. If you don't know what Darby Smart is, you need to check it out. 

Darby Smart is an website that helps launch designers by creating DIY kits based on the latest fashion and designer trends. 

When you sign up to become a designer, you are able to purchase DIY kits. They have everything from bracelets to clutches to planter pots. It's insanely cool because they send you everything you need to create the product in one neat little kit.

Nicole sent me a complementary kit to create my own DIY craft; I've had it for a little while but wanted to get settled in at school before I tackled it. 

The kit I received was DIY headbands; in the kit there was three silver headbands, three different color thread, and some gorgeous accent pieces to add to the finished headband.

This was absolutely perfect for me because I love wearing headbands and channeling my inner Blair Waldorf. 

Before and after the VMAs on Sunday, I tackled this project; it seemed difficult at first and I couldn't imagine completing it but once I started, I got the hang of it and I am so thrilled with the outcome. 

Darby includes directions with all the kits and they are all relatively simple and easy to understand.

First I chose my thread (pink of course) and decided to pair it with the string of pearl accents that Darby included in the kit. I placed a dab of superglue (also included) on one end of the metal headband and then placed one end of the pink thread on the glue.

After, I begun to wrap the thread all the way along the headband till I reached the other side where I then finished with another dab of superglue. That took a while and it was tedious but I watched Law and Order SVU whilst doing so, so it went by quickly.

After, I was confused to how I would get the pearls on the headband but after carefully re-reading the directions, I figured it out. All you had to do was hold the pearls on top of the threaded headband in place and then continue to wrap the pink thread through the pearls No glue needed; just go through the spaces of the pearls. Very simple.

At the end, I have an adorable skinny, pink and pearl headband. This is something I would definitely buy so the fact that I was able to make it myself was incredible. 

I really loved doing this DIY project provided by Darby Smart and I'm looking forward to doing more projects similar to this!

An Ode to Senior Year

in , , , by RoyallyPink, 7:30 AM
Dear Senior Year,

Today you officially begin. This will be my last, first day of school and I don't know how I feel about that. Since I was five years old I have counted on August and September to be back to school months and now, that is all being taken from me. 

This is the last time I will open a fresh page of a notebook, the last time I'll receive a syllabus for the first time, the last first day of school. 

Today, August 27th, comes appropriately as my last day first day of college; three years ago on August 27th I moved into my freshmen year dorm. I was scared, nervous, and very sad to leave high school behind and embark on this new journey. Now, I'm headed off to my last first day and I feel confident. It's amazing how things come full circle.

I'm a senior again and I'm not ready for it. I'm not ready for all the lasts and all the goodbyes. Being a senior is fun because you're at the top of the class but not fun because soon you will be forgotten. Soon you will leave campus for the last time and know that it'll be a while before you come back. 

People may remember you for the organizations you were in but if not, you will just become another alumni. You may not leave a legacy and that is scary. It's scary to think about being forgotten to a place you have called home for so long.

Senior year is one step closer to the real world, to being a real grown up. That scares me. I don't feel anywhere near ready to face the real world. I don't feel mature enough to work a 9-5 job. I don't want to leave the cocoon that is Iona College. I'm not ready.

With all my fears for senior year comes also my excitement and high expectations. It's going to be fun to live out the college life for one final hurrah. I'm excited that I will get one last chance at freedom and to do whatever I want, whenever I want. I am the leader of my senior year, of my life and I am going to make the best of it.

Senior year, treat me well. Give me lots of laughs, lots of late nights, lots of friends, and lots of memories. Please give me mornings where me and my friends lounge around with breakfast and discuss the previous night's events. 

Give me good classes and good professors with good grades. Give me the strength to lead the organizations that mean the most to me. Give me the clear mind to organize myself without stress.

Most of all senior year, treat me with kindness and love. Be gentle but be fun. I want to remember this year with great fondness and know that I did everything I wanted too. I want to remember this as the year that I stepped outside my comfort zone and made the best of.

Iona College, you are my home and you will always be the place where I found myself. Let the good times and serious times continue with one final year. 

This book is almost finished, I'm not ready to read the end.

How lucky we are to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard?

Rock the Moroccan

in , , , by RoyallyPink, 7:00 AM
For the past year or so I have heard wonders about moroccan oil. Every magazine and beauty blogger has been raving about the benefits of this organic oil.

My sister and mom have begun using moroccan oil especially made for your hair and swear by it. 

I have used some moroccan oil hair products but my hair is so thick and curly and also I use a ridiculous amount of hair products on any given day, I never noticed the difference when I used moroccan.

Aside from moroccan oil for the hair, I have seen other uses for it such as bath and body oil, face moisturizer and toner, and a lip scrub.

It sounds like so much fun to have one neat little product do all these amazing things! I never got around to buying a bottle of moroccan because I just didn't know where to start. Sephora, Amazon, the drug store? There are so many choices to pick from.

As if the Birchbox gods were talking to me, I was sent a nifty little sample of organic moroccan argan oil in August's box and finally used it.

Last night I gave myself a Sunday night manicure and when I took my old, chipped polish off, I let my nails breath for a bit and then rubbed the oil on my cuticles. 

I have very bad cuticles because I hardly get manicures; I would just rather do my nails myself. I rubbed a little bit of the oil on my broken, flaky cuticles and almost immediately I noticed the difference. 

My cuticles and nail beds were cleaner, smoother, and more put together. It was amazed. I was shocked and impressed by how quickly the oil worked and how big the difference was. Just a little bit of oil made my nails that much more attractive.Attractive looking nails make for a much better first week of classes!

I will definitely be using this oil for more uses, anything I could find. I also need to find a cheaper
oil available, $40 for oil is unacceptable to me.

What is your favorite way to use moroccan argan oil?
A few weeks ago I was contacted by the loveliest author and speaker, Cheryll Duffie, about her new book entitled "Everything I Need To Know in Life I Learned From Being in a Sorority". 

I being the obsessed sorority girl I am was thrilled to read the book and talk with Cheryll further about what this book is all about. She was kind enough to send me a copy and I have to tell you, it is an incredible piece of work. 

This isn't a novel, it's not technically an advice book, it purely covers how joining a sorority in your college years can affect, help, and benefit you throughout your entire life. It sheds light on how to get rid of the stereotype and to just be aware that no matter when and where, you are always wearing your letters.

Reading the book I definitely shed a few tears; I'm just constantly overwhelmed and moved by the feelings that I experience when I'm talking about my sorority or surrounded by my sisters or other greek life members. I just think that being part of a sorority has given me an incredible amount of confidence and opportunity. It has given me an incredibly amount of memories and friendship.

This book defines that for me; it was just so beautifully written and covered everything and anything you wanted to know about sororities. It truly showcased what sisterhood really means.

The quote that every single sorority girl lives by and there has never been anything truer.

Cheryll discusses the fact that being in a sorority is a lot like normal life; people don't think that sororities are normal. I've heard it time and time again--this isn't real life when in actuality it is real life. I'm not living in a dreamland, I'm building a network, gaining and honing skills, and learning what it's like to run an organization.

Being in a sorority, leading a sorority, is a lot similar to leading a company. You're passionate about something, spending a lot of time and effort making it better for the people who come after you.

I can't even explain into words how much I loved this book; it is everything I think about and believe in when it comes to my sorority and greek life in general. I want to wrap this book up and give it to every single on of my sisters and remind them why they joined a sorority in the first place.

These are lessons from the book that really stuck with me and I just needed to share them with 
all of you. 

I definitely will be keeping this book for close to me during my last year as a collegiate member but will keep it with my forever and ever and continually live out my sorority's beliefs and values. 

Check out more from Cheryll on her website and stay tuned for some fun stuff coming from Cheryll in the next few weeks!

Living in a dorm room can be really fun or really annoying. You're either made for it or you're not. You really can make the best of dorm room life if you want too; it's the only time you'll live in a cramped space with four plus other people.

It's the only time where you can leave your doors open and visit your other friends on your floor; stay up late, go to sleep early, do whatever you want. I loved living in a dorm room and now that I finally have my own off campus apartment (with my own room), I savor the days where I slept in the same room with two of my best friends.

It's annoying yes, but it's also the greatest time in your life. I've been very nostaglic lately, I apologize.

The one thing that is awfully annoying about dorm room living is the storage. I am someone who has a lot of crap; maybe I'm a hoarder, who knows! But I like my "stuff" as my mom likes to call it. It was always difficult finding a place to put all my stuff and have the room I wanted to have.

As I moved into different dorm rooms each year, it got a little easier because I lived with less and less people but it was still hard.

It becomes an art, learning how to organize a dorm room but you'll get the hang of it.

Dorm Room Storage

My number one tip for storage is bins. Bins are your friend in college so utilize them. They aren't boring, ugly rubber anymore either; they have gorgeous, pretty, chic bins that fit your persoanlity and style.

I love using stacking bins to store my beauty products, scarves, and textbooks. They stack right on top of each other and you're able to stick them in the corner so they don't take up too much space.

Under the bed bins are also a great essential to add to your room too. Keeping bulky sweaters and sweatpants in those under bed storage bins will give you more space in your drawers and closets.

Also think about having a bin for random items like magazines or anything else you hoard. I really love the adorable Lilly Pulitzer bins; they're cute and will add an extra something to the drab dorm room look.

Another great tip is when you're packing for school, try to not bring things you don't need. You don't need your entire DVD or book collection or your high school yearbook. Pick the essentials and pack those up, everything else leave at home!

What are your favorite ways to store things at college?

Moving away to college is one of the scariest things in the world. My freshmen move in day I was full of tears and fears. I just wanted to leave and go home, be with my friends and family and live inside my comfort zone.

Sleeping in your bed for the first time, in a room full of strangers, in a strange building...there was nothing fun about it. There was nothing comfortable about it.

I would be lying if I said I enjoyed freshmen year. Yes I made friends, yes I had fun, but it was a major adjustment, one I would never want to relive.

Over time though, I look back with fondness at my freshmen year and how naive I was, how new everything was. I would kill to go back to freshmen year, change some things, and savor the time I had.

With all of this said, here are some of the best tips I could offer to college freshmen:

1. Get involved

You are going to hear this time and time again. College is not college without being involved. Most schools will have an involvement fair at the start of school where you can see all the clubs and sign up for what you want to join. Your email will be flooded with meeting times but it's a good thing! Go to those meetings, join a club you think will fit you. If you don't wake up in the morning and are involved in some aspect of campus life, you are missing out on what the college experience is all about.

2. Go outside your comfort zone

If you're away at college you're already far beyond the lines of your comfort zone. Go that one step further though, it will benefit you in the end. If something scares you, do it! That fear is a signal that is telling you that something good might come out of it. Do something you wouldn't normally do, knock on someone's door and introduce yourself, raise your hand in the classroom, do something different! This is the best way to grow, especially when you're in a welcoming place like a college campus.

3. Try out a service project

I know on my campus, service is a HUGE part of student life. There are so many different ways to give back to the community around you. Go help out at a soup kitchen, work at the tutoring center; those are great ways to get involved, meet good people, and give back. College is a wonderful way to do charity work and do different things that you normally wouldn't have access too.

4. Learn to do things alone

This is something I am still working on. It can be daunting to go outside your room by yourself. I still won't sit in the cafeteria alone but tons of my friends always eat by themselves. Go to the gym alone, walk alone to class, sit outside on the steps alone, do things by yourself because when you are comfortable being by yourself, you'll be comfortable doing anything.

5. Say Yes to Everything!

Okay, maybe not EVERYTHING. I wish I had said yes to more stuff when I was a freshmen; heck, I wish I said yes to more stuff now!  If it's Thursday night and you're exhausted and have a paper to write but your roommates are going out and they ask you to come, say yes! Say yes despite any situation. Those are the nights where you will thank yourself that you went out. Saying yes opens your mind up more and really shapes your college experience. Don't be that person that is uptight and says no to everything because they would rather lay in bed and watch Netflix. Netflix will always be there, college won't.

In the end, there is a place for everyone at college. You make your own experience with the things you do and don't do. They say college is the best four years of your life and they are not lying. I have grown in so many ways since I first stepped foot at Iona College and I would give anything in the world to have my freshmen year back.

Make the most of it because in the blink of an eye, it'll be gone.

There is few things I love more than back to school shopping. After the fourth of July, I count down the days till I am able to go to Staples or Target and buy all new supplies.

The smell of a fresh, blank notebook, the touch of a brand new pen to clean paper, the first time you open your planner--it's such an experience for me. And I'm being awfully dramatic but that is just how much I love school supplies.

It really pains me that this was the last time I will go school supply shopping. It was the start to many lasts of my senior year and I'm not ready to let go of this one yet. I think during August and September for the rest of my life I will always go school supply shopping and buy new notebooks, planners, etc.

I now consider myself an expert in the school supplies since it gives me the types of chills watching "The Notebook" does. 

I usually stick to the same types of school supplies but here are some that I am LOVING this year!

If I didn't already buy my Lilly agenda, this would've been my next purchase!

I have my Lilly Pulitzer 'Dirty Shirley' pencil pouch from last year and one from Levo League but I think this adorable Tusk in the Sun pouch will find it's way into my life soon enough.

These pencils are all over the internet and Mackenzie Horan is one special lady; she is so talented and these pencils are the perfect addition to any collection. I have been eyeing them from a good year; I think it's time to purchase them!

I love stationary and lists and post its; my desk is currently covered in them. I really love this to-do list from Kate Spade because it's chic, adorable, and completely useful.

Maybooks is my go-to for having extra notebooks around. I always find it useful to keep a few extra notebooks at hand for jotting down extra notes, whether it's for internships, my sorority, or a random notebook with a bunch of random notes. Having those extra books keeps me more organized and really helps clear my mind and keep me sane.

What are your favorites for school supplies?

 I received a free sample of this product from Lucky and Seventh Generation for use in connection with this blog.

As part of the Lucky Contributor Community, there are always opportunities that are popping up. When I saw the chance to write a post all about beauty secrets featuring Seventh Generation Firming Serum, I jumped at it!

This summer I really got into beauty and skincare, more than ever before. I started to search for the perfect products to rotate into my skincare routine. I've found plenty of gems and others that didn't work so well for my skin.

I consider myself to have normal skin, it's not really oily or dry, it's a perfect combination of both. I've also been reading a lot about going all natural in beauty products which has nothing but beneficial use.

When I received this serum from Seventh Generation, I was super excited; I had heard such awesome things about serums and all the benefits from them, such as moisturizing, firming, reducing impurities, etc. Combining those features with all natural ingredients such as tea tree oil, baobob, and rose-hip, there seems to be nothing bad about Seventh Generation products.

These natural skin products won't clog pores and is free of parabens, synthetic fragrances, and is hypoallergenic.

The serum I received is the Firming serum which is described as "strengthens and tones with Baobob".

Maybe it's because I'm only 20 years old and my skin is still in good shape but I didn't notice a drastic difference when using the serum over the past two or three weeks. It does leave my skin incredibly soft, softer than any other moisturizer I use so that is a definite plus and the reason I've continued to use it.

I thought that I would be left with oily skin after using the serum but it really did absorb into my skin rather quickly, another plus.

I definitely think that using Seventh Generation Firming Serum is a great addition to my skincare routine and is definitely part of my #AllNaturalStyleSecrets. It's a great unknown gem!

What are your #AllNaturalStyleSecrets?