I'm going to be 25 years old in November but I have yet to hit that sweet spot where I'm getting five wedding invitations a month and going to two weddings a weekend. I attended my cousin's bridal shower and wedding last year but that's pretty much it.

A few of my sorority sisters have gotten engaged/married, but not anyone I'm super close too. That's fine with me because I'm in no rush to grow up and the sooner I can put off bridesmaids dresses and Bachelorette parties, the better!

On that note, my co-worker got engaged this summer (while she was on vacation in Japan!!!) and her festivities are starting. It's really exciting to hear about wedding planning and to actually personally know someone getting married.

Her engagement party is in a few weeks and truthfully, I have no idea what to do. Gifts? No clue what to get. Etiquette? No idea what to do. Outfit? Someone help me!

After talking it out with a few of my friends and other co-workers, it seems that for this occassion, simple is best.

But I also found this incredible style guide to help first time goers like me figure out what to wear to the wedding occassion of your choice.



Sometimes I think it's almost easier to be a dude because all you need is a tux or a suit, you just have to figure out which one is appropriate.

After all of this knowledge, I decided that I'm going with a simple, black J.Crew dress that still has the tags on it. I bought it at the beginning of the summer because I figured that I could always use a simple, black dress and I was right! (The one I have is out of stock, but here is a similar one)

Below are a few of my other picks for a Semi Formal Dressy Casual engagement party, bridal shower, wedding!

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What are your fashion suggestions for engagement parties? 
xoxo
B
When I received this book in one of the PopSugar Must Have Boxes, I didn't know what to expect. I didn't read any reviews or summaries of it, and I kind of thought it was going to be a thriller novel, but it wasn't.

The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo was one of my favorite books of the year and one of my favorite of all time. I loved it so much, I forced my mom to read it. My mom used to be a huge reader when I was younger but she's become addicted to her phone and reality television, like all good people in 2017. She has really been enjoying it too.

The book revolves around Hollywood starlet Evelyn Hugo's life. She's an old Hollywood movie star who has tapped this random New York writer to do an exposé on her for a magazine. No one understands why Evelyn has asked Monique Grant to write this article; Evenlyn doesn't deal with the press anymore and she hasn't had her photo taken in years.



Why now? Why Monique?

Everything is soon revealed but Monique soon holds the keys to Evelyn's entire life... the real story, not what the public knows.

What the public knows is Evelyn was married seven times, but why? What was really going on behind closed doors?

The book is a real page turner, an easy ready and really delightful. It has romance, family, sex, passion, tradegy, hollywood glamour -- it has everything you could ever really want in a book. I haven't loved a fiction book like this (that was a thriller) in a really long time.

I feel like I've been really spoiled with books lately because nothing is satisfying to me, if there's not a crime or mystery involved. This has a mystery because you want to know why Evelyn chose Monique, and how Evelyn's life plays out... and boy, is the twist worth every page.

I read this book in three days because I just couldn't put it down. It was so easy to fall in love with the characters, even when you weren't supposed too, and it was so easy to imagine this story playing out in real life.

The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo needs to be the next book you read, I promise you won't be disappointed.


It's been a really long time since I was a freshmen in college, but this blog was based off the idea of giving college girls a place to come and get advice on things they were wondering about, or maybe didn't even know if they were wondering about.

As I've grown, Royally Pink has grown as well and I'm no longer a college student, or even a post-graduate. I'm a full blown adult (I guess?) but my heart will always be in college.

It was really weird last week when I knew Iona was going back to school but there was hardly anyone on my social media that was going back. The freshmen class, when I was a senior, graduated in May, so I don't know too many people at Iona anymore. It's a really scary thought but it also makes this time of year easier.

I'll always miss Iona, I'll always miss college and I don't think I'll ever stop. That has been a common theme over the past three years.

Even though I haven't had many college posts in recent years, I figured I'd do a little something this year to honor the back to school season. Even though I'm not in school, August & September to me will always mean a fresh start.

*I do have some really good posts planned over the course of the next few months for college seniors and how to prep for the 'real world' so look out for that.

Today however, is for everyone.

When I went to freshmen year, it was definitely very scary and as prepared as I was, I felt unprepared at the same time. I thought I had everything I would need but these were things I wish I had my first few months that I didn't think of...

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1. Business Casual Wear: This might seem weird for a college freshmen (or even sophomore) but I'm sure your school will be having career fairs and guest speakers. I suggest bringing a few pieces of business casual wear so you can be dressed the part whenever something like that comes up. You don't want to be the person in jeans and a t-shirt at a serious function.

2. One Cup Coffee Maker: You will save so much meal card money if you invest in a small coffee maker. Most dorms should allow you to have something like this so I highly suggest picking one up. I wasted so much money the first few years of college on coffee but I would've saved if I just bought a $20 coffee maker. You'll thank me later.

3. Brita Filter System: This was something I had no idea I would need but I am so happy that my roommates thought of it. I'm not picky when it comes to water; I'll drink tap water like it's nobodies business but it was so nice to have filtered water that was always cold. Buy one your freshmen year and you'll have it forever!

4. Bedside lamp: My freshmen year I was on the top bunk, on top of a loft, so my desk was underneath my bed. Sometimes I'd want to just lay in bed and read or study but didn't want the room light on, or maybe my roommates were trying to sleep. Having a lamp that attached to my bed was so handy and I think it's something I had no idea would be so useful.

5. Gym Clothes: It was the third weekend of school when I realized I had no gym clothes. I never went to the gym in high school and had thrown out my sneakers the moment I could (I hate sneakers and don't wear them expect if I'm at the gym) so when I realized my college had a gym I could go to for free, I was left with no clothes/shoes. Thankfully my mom took me shopping and I got everything I needed.

Those were personally a few things I could remember not having at the start but made the 4 years I spent at Iona a little easier and more prepared. If you want a full blown packing list, Her Campus has a SICK one and I wish I had this 7 years ago (holy shit, I started college 7 years ago.)

Below are a few other essentials that are NOT surprising!


If you have any other questions about college, please feel free to reach out to me at briana@royallypink.com. I like any excuse to talk about it ;)

xoxo
B
Boy, what a week! I traveled down to QVC in Pennsylvania for work, came home Wednesday after being up from 7 AM on Monday till 1 AM on Tuesday. I was definitely hurting Thursday but it was a really great trip.

On Monday, when we got down to Pennsylvania, my coworkers and I sat in a parking lot and watched the solar eclipse -- or what we could see of it. I wasn't that impressed but it was really cool to be in on this natural phenomenon that took the entire country by storm. It was also really cool to see how the eclipse was said to effect us, even our beauty routines. 

The summer is winding down and I'm so excited for September 1st next week. I will be breaking out my fall decor and drinking Pumpkin Spice Lattes the day after Labor Day! It can't come soon enough.



I don't have much else to report because my brain is FRIED so we'll keep this short and sweet-- here's what I loved this week:


Here's what you missed on Royally Pink:

Have a great weekend!
xoxo
B
So, we've had a few Royally Planned posts this year already, including my Day Designer and the Brit + Co Planner. I kept saying that I was going to reveal my "real" planner and here we are.

*Before we get started, let me say that I now use my Day Designer as a work planner AT WORK and it has been working out amazing. It's a perfect layout for the work week and I've been so much more organized since using it at the beginning of the month. My Brit + Co personalized planner is my "to do list" that lives at home.

When the season started out, I decided that I wanted a Kate Spade planner. I was going to say goodbye to Lilly Pulitzer for the first time in a while, and decided that since I loved my Henri Bendel planner this year, I knew I was able to let go of the whimisical colors that Lilly gives me.

I knew my love of Kate Spade was stronger than ever so I was going to attempt their planners again. If you remember, I tried a KS planner right after I graduated but I was not ready to let go of Lilly.

This year was different. I ordered this planner first but I had misjudged the size and it was far too big to bring back and forth to work with me. Then I saw this one, and decided that is what I wanted to spend the year with.


The cover is bright and beautiful, while the pages are simple and plain but still have enough space to write, plan, and create lists. Kate Spade even included adorable gold foil stickers at the front of the planner.






I have especially been enjoying the double sided pocket on the first page because I put extra stickers and post its there for safe keeping.





I have been actually using this planner for the past few weeks and I love it. I have zero regrets because even though its not as bright and colorful as my past Lilly planners, it's a little easier to use than the Henri Bendel. There is more space to organize, and I've been having fun using different stickers to decorate.

I've already filled up the entire September month with my plans, because I'm excited for fall and I think this planner will make it with me the entire year... until next August.

I think this is a great planner for college because there is so much space to write -- I also really like the notes section in the bach of each month, in addition to the notes section in the front of the planner.  There is just a lot of space for lists, or other notes.

PS: I've also been eyeing up this Henri Bendel + Megan Hess planner (you know how I feel about Megan Hess). If I do get this, it will be my "at home desk planner"; it wouldn't replace the Brit + Co, it would just be more of a planner instead of a list maker.

I love planners, I can't help it!

What planner did you choose for this year?
xoxo
B
My hair has been a mess lately. If we're being honest, it's been a mess my entire life. I've said before how my hair is curly, frizzy, and very unruly. Because of this, I am always on the search for something new and exciting -- a product that will blow the socks off of me and change my hair.

I did a post like this last summer but I've since found different products that work just as well. Lately, my hair has felt fried, dry, and stiff so the following products have been helping me keep that feeling at bay.




1. Ouai Rose Hair & Body Oil: I've always been very honest with my love of all things rose scented so when I got this in the Vogue x Birchbox Limited Edition box, I was thrilled. I'm always in the market for a new oil and this one really helps to moisturize my hair and to tame the frizz and fly aways. I also love how this is a travel size because I keep it in my work bag for when the humidity gets a little crazy when I'm on my commute. I don't use oil in my hair when it's wet because I feel like it makes my hair a tad bit too greasy but after it's styled, I always finish off with this oil. *I have yet to try it on my body but I'm sure it's fabulous.

2. Ouai Wave Spray: I don't think I talked about this last summer but I really should've. I alternated between this and the Bumble and Bumble Don't Blow It cream, but I think I might like this more. When I'm   rocking curly hair, I will spray this in wet hair and then sleep on it. I wake up in the morning with full, soft curls and waves. It doesn't leave my hair oily, greasy, or stiff -- it's so good. I have been loving everything I've tried from Ouai and I really want to try more because the products are SO GOOD.

3. Eva NYC Therapy Session Hair Mask: I can't tell you how many of these I've gone through. I have consistently using deep conditioners and hair masks as a regular conditioner for years now and this I think has been my favorite. It has a wonderful price tag of $11-$14 depending on if it's on sale at Ulta, and it take a while to go through. It's very thick, very hydrating, but does not weigh down your hair. It leaves my hair very smooth, shiny, and perfectly conditioned.

4. Drybar Prep Rally Prime & Prep Detangler: Drybar is still one of my favorite hair brands and I still have a lot of their products (and need to buy their newer products) but this is a must-have for me. It's so good my sister kept stealing it from me, and my bottle is now finished. I need to buy more and I'm thinking me not using this is why my hair has felt weird lately. Anyways... it's a hair primer and detangler that you spray in before brushing your wet hair, and before styling. It has heat protectant and hydrates the hair, while also strengtehning it. I can 100% attest to all of these claims. It's such a stand out product and now holds the spot for my #1 hair primer.

What is your current favorite hair product?
xoxo
B
I am by no means a financial wizard. I have been struggling for years to build up a savings account that satisifed me, and trying to control my spending habits.

Over the past months, I've gotten a lot better and I'm really proud of myself. I went a little crazy with spending last week but I've gotten back on track.

I don't have a good relationship with money and I've made that clear, but I do think that there are things that you should invest in/save for. What am I saving my money for? I'm saving for life... for an emergency, for an apartment, for an adult life.

I do think that there are important things we should all be saving for as we enter our twenties. It's definitely something to think of if you're entering your senior year of college. I wish I would've known this back then...



1. Luggage: I did not have a decent suitcase when I graduated college and shared with my mom. It wasn't until I started traveling for work that I knew I needed something serious. I needed a real, regular size suitcase that suited my personality but was also professional. I saved up a bit and bought this suitcase from Target. I also highly recommend these because they're everywhere and have a really good reputation.

2. Good Pillows: I HATE nothing more than waking up in the morning with a stiff neck. I am very particular about the pillows I sleep on and it drives me nuts when they're not just perfect (I sound very divalicious, don't I?) My pillows have to be soft but not so soft that there is no support and the last thing I want is a hard pillow. Good pillows are everything.

3. Investment Handbag: It's no surprise that I'd find a way to work a handbag onto this list because they are my everything. I have a lot of mid range handbags (Kate Spade, Tory Burch...) but I fully believe in saving up for a handbag that will last you your entire life, such as Louis Vuitton Speedy (which I got for my 16th birthday and it's still incredible). Having a tote like a Prada Galleria, or even a Louis Vuitton Neverfull, to me, is a good investment because it's a sturdy work tote that will be your go-to for job interviews, events, work days, etc. If you love handbags and are looking for something durable, I recommend saving up for something you love!

4. An apartment: I still live at home and I'm 100% ok with it. I don't feel financially responsible enough yet, and it's just me and my mom (my sister just moved out for her senior year of college) so I'm content here, but I have gotten the inkling recently, as more and more of my friends move out on their own, that I need to get serious. I highly recommend to start saving (starting with that graduation money) for your first apartment as soon as you get out of school. This would guarantee that you're ready to leave at a moment's notice, with a nice little safety net.

Learn from my mistakes and start saving now! 
xoxo
B
I'm writing this after a three day, yet busy work week, and as I watch The Fault in Our Stars. This was one of the best books I've ever read, because John Green is a genius, and it was a book that made me sob so hard my eyes swelled up.

It was also a movie that I thought did a good job at staying true to the message and feel of the book because it made me cry just as hard.

It brought something out in me and I just finished writing this post that I published on the HuffPost platform . I was just moved by the movie and started thinking (in the shower of course) what other love stories there are that have notable lines and really inspire something.

It's not wonderful, it's not the best piece I've ever written, but it kind of flowed out of me so I hope you'll read it :)

Anyways... next week I'm headed to QVC for another work trip so I'm going to try my best to write next week's posts before the weekend ends!

I did a lot of shopping over the past week and I'm starting to get all my packages. I already filmed an unboxing which will be up on my Youtube channel soon (hopefully this weekend) and I'll sprinkle in some more products in a post or v-log, whichever comes first!



For now, here's what I loved this week:


Here's what you missed on Royally Pink:
Have a great weekend everyone!
xoxo
B
Ever since I was little, I loved writing. I used to pretend I was a reporter for my local newspaper. I wanted to be Lindsay Lohan in "Get A Clue". I loved to write in my diary and create stories in my head.

As I got older, I realized that I could actually make a career out of writing. When I was a Junior in high school, I got a near perfect score on my English Regents and was placed into Advanced English -- the first time I was ever put into an Advanced class. My Junior year English teacher was very proud of me and talked to me about pursuing a career with some sort of writing.

Before I decided to major in Journalism, I wanted to major in Psychology but with the help of my favorite English teacher (Mrs. I) and my favorite History teacher, (Ms. McNiff) I decided to head to college with dreams of Journalism in my head.

I wrote everything I could in college from newspaper stories to random articles published on random websites to writing internships and then finally to this blog. While I don't have a traditional career in writing and made my way into the social media world, writing is still in my heart.

I write here, for you, every week. I write for Elite Daily, The Huffington Post, and Out of Office NY. I write for my work blog, which was created specifically for me. I write books (well, two books that I have in my head). I just need to write.

My mentor, my friend, Elana, is an incredible writer and has been published in so many incredible places. She gave me my internship at Levo League (now just Levo) and gave me my first job out of college. She's been a cheerleader of mine from the beginning and I of hers.

*I just did an interview with Elana for 1000 Dreams Fund so check out more of her story! She has also a blog where she offers up some incredible career advice! 


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That's why when the queen of freelance writing (as I have dubbed her) reached out to me and told me that she was creating a writing course to teach people with writing dreams how to get published, whether it's a big time name or a smaller outlet, I nearly screamed.

The course is called "Pitch Perfect: How to Get Your Writing Published in Top Publications" and takes you through the steps on how to perfectly pitch yourself to any publication you want, and be successful at it.

I immediately started the course and flew through it (I am a fast reader, fast learner, and I took notes). It's not a difficult course and is filled with a lot of great information. It was information that I didn't find anywhere else.

Elana has so much to teach and I think it's really unique, unlike any advice I've read about trying to get published.

I think what makes this different from other courses/webinars/advice is that if you know Elana, you know she is determined and incredibly smart, but down to earth. She's a realist and understands that people work differently, but I think this course can apply to everyone's strengths.

Nothing in the course is outlandish or undoable -- it's ALL doable.

As my first attempt after finishing this course, I pitched myself to Out of Office NY and got the contributing writer position! I've now written there a handful of times and I've been loving it.

If you are serious about writing and want to make a career out of it, whether as a professional or freelancer, I HIGHLY recommend this course. It has incredibly valuable information and is a great resource to reference whenever you need a motivational push.

ELANA IS OFFERING A FREE COURSE AT 3PM ET TODAY SO SIGN UP

Please let me know if you take the course -- I would love to chat about it and see what you thought :)

xoxo
B


I've been wanting to read this book for a while now...for years, actually. The Royal We was released in 2015 and kind of blew up.

Everyone was reading this book and at one point, it was even being written as a movie by Lauren Graham and Mae Whitman.

The title and cover alone were enough to grab my attention all those years ago and I finally got around to "listening" to this book. Who doesn't want to read a book called "The Royal We"? What girl with a blog called "Royally Pink" doesn't want to read that book?!

The Royal We is loosely (and I say that borderline sarcastically because it's SO TRUE) on Kate Middleton and Prince William's romance.



The novel follows Rebecca "Bex" Porter and Prince Nicholas' journey to the altar. We start out with Rebecca arriving at Oxford University in England and running, quite literally, into Prince Nicholas. They start off as very good friends, and eventually it turns into a budding romance.

The book follows them over eight years, through many trials and tribulations, and shows you all sorts of different perspectives on their relationship. It's very fun, flirty, romantic, and scandalous all at the same time and kept me on my toes. At times, it's also very heartbreaking and I found myself holding back hysterical tears on the subway.

I didn't think the book was predictable either, because a lot of unpredictable things happened, mostly toward the middle-end of the book.

Listening to the book was quite long -- 17 hours but it felt like a lot longer because the book was broken up into different parts.

I am clearly obsessed with all things royal and tried my very hardest to find bits of truth within the book and there were quite a lot.

For starters, Rebecca has a twin sister (Pippa Middleton is not a twin but close enough) and Prince Nicholas' brother is a wild, partying, women loving ginger named Freddie. There is also an issue with Prince Nicholas and Freddie's mother, Emma, who used to be hounded by the press.

As you read the book and if you know the history of William and Catherine, you'll definitely be able to tell some similiarities.

I 100% would recommend this book for anyone because it has romance, comedy, a bit of history, and some scandal. It's not overly corny and is definitely not boring. It's also a fun game to try to figure out what was taken from real life and what is truly fiction.

The Royal We is definitely one of my favorite books I've 'read' this year!

xoxo
B
Since this blog's inception, I've been a huge lover of subscription boxes. From Birchbox to Ipsy to NatureBox, I've loved and tried a lot of the boxes on the market.

My favorite, by far, has always and probably will always be the PopSugar Must Have box. It costs $39.99 a month but comes with at least $100 worth of product inside... and it's all full size and lifestyle products, so you get a mixture of everything.

*I've reviewed so many Must Have boxes over the years.. check out some past reviews!



PopSugar Must Have is celebrating their 5th birthday with a stellar, spectular August box. They were kind enough (like they always are) to send me the box and ugh, I was pleasantly surprised when I opened it.





First up is a mask I've been wanting to try since it came out but never pulled the trigger; the First Aid Beauty Bouncy Mask. This is an all in one mask that will just make your skin look and feel better and I can't wait to try it out.

Next up was my 2nd favorite thing in here... a gorgeous blush colored, leather bound notebook from Fringe Studio. The last thing I need is a new notebook but it's just so pretty!

In the past year since I started loving interior design, I've wanted a breakfast tray or similar item so when I saw this 'Cheers' lacquered tray from Pasatel, I nearly keeled over. My mom already stole it from me and put it on the living room coffee table.



Some other fun items inside the box were a Shoptiques $25 gift card, some gorgeous long stemmed gold glitter candles from Meri Meri (which I will be using for my 25th birthday), Goodie Girl Chocolate Chunk Gluten Free Cookies (which I ate as soon as I opened the box) and an adorable Dogeared Friendship Bracelet.



This was a really great box, one of the best I've seen in a while and I'm happy that I was able to receive it and show it off to you all!

Must Have is really the only subscription box I think is worht it nowadays; the market is saturated with boxes but this has clearly stood the test of time and keeps getting better and better!

If you want to try out Must Have on your own, use the code PARTY for $10 off your first box -- trust me, you won't regret it!

xoxo
B
I'm writing this from the comfort of my bedroom on Monday morning because I took the day off from work. As fun as my weekend was, it was exhausting. I drove to, from, and around Boston so it was a lot.

We arrived to Boston around 2:30 PM on Friday and took a little nap in the hotel. We stayed at the Holiday Inn Express Suites in Cambridge and it was perfectly fine. It wasn't anything fancy or insanely nice but the room was big, clean, and cozy. The hotel staff was nice and courteous so to me, it was a nice stay.



Friday night, went to the Boston Burger Company for dinner in Cambridge. I've been wanting to go to this place for years because they have super aggressive burgers, and it was everything I imagined. I ordered the Killer Bee which was bacon, cheese, onion rings, and BBQ sauce -- it was insaely delicious.









Afterwards, we walked around Harvard Square, went to a few bookstores, walked around Harvard's campus and just enjoyed the nice night. I was asleep by 10:30 because I was exhausted from the drive and we had an early day on Saturday.






On Saturday, we started out in the Back Bay which I think was my favorite part of the entire trip. It seems like the heart of Boston and was everything I thought it would be; so many cute shops, restuarants, and cafes-- it was awesome.






For Brunch we went to The Beehive and it was adorable -- probably my favorite restuarant I went to on this trip. It had a very 1920s/New Orelans vibe with a jazz band and dim lighting. I got Short Rib Hash with egg whites and it was divine. Add a mimosa and a coffee and you've got the perfect brunch!




Afterwards, I wanted to go to Kate Spade (of course) and it was the cutest little shop. Newbury Street was filled wtih adrorable double decker stores and I was obsessed. I got to try on some bags I've been eyeing and picked up a new phone case.

After Kate Spade, we went into the Lilly Pulitzer store which was having an awesome sale and I picked up this shirt which I've been eyeing for a while. Shopping portion of the trip? Complete!



We walked around Back Bay more, went to the Public Garden Park (I think that was the name) and it was incredible. I've never been to Central Park (bad New Yorker, I know) but this was breathtaking. I was obsessed.






After this little excursion we headed over to the JFK Museum and Library and OMG, this was incredible. JFK and Jackie O are some of my favorite historical figures so seeing a museum dedicated to the 35th President and the First Lady that CHANGED First Ladies forever, was beyond words. I definitely think this is a must-do if you're in Boston because it's touristy without being over the top corny.









When we left the museum, we headed to the North End and grabbed a Lobster Roll (my first ever and it was SO GOOD). It was back to the hotel after this for a bit of R&R and then we headed to dinner at a very late 10 PM in South Boston at Lincoln's Tavern. I got Truffle Mac & Cheese and the vibe of the bar was pretty good and if I was in better shape (not tired and cranky) I would've really been into it. It was a super young crowd but still had a classy feel, definitely not a college bar. It was really nice.




Sunday morning we headed out early but not without breakfast at The Friendly Toast. We had tried to get into this resutarant in the Back Bay but realized there was one in Cambridge, a few minutes from our hotel and it was well worth it. The menu was super interesting, with lots of fun brunch items but I kept it simple with 1 Pancake (because it was the size of the plate) and a side of bacon.

We were on the road at 10 AM and the trip was over! It was so much fun to be in a different state and explore the city. I would 100% go back to Boston ASAP, I'd love to go in the Fall and maybe take a trip to Salem, we shall see!

xoxo
B


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