My First Month of Full-Time Work After Graduating College

If you haven’t already, go check out my article about “My Job Hunt Experience + How To Do It Better Than Me.”

For a short recap if you’re too lazy to read the article (I understand, it’s long and honestly why do you care about my job hunt experience), I applied to over 100 jobs before securing one. Now, I work as a full-time nanny.

I worked first as an on-call nanny here in the city. I worked anywhere from 25-35 hours per week. I often found myself in a different home and working a different schedule each day. This routine (or lack thereof) had its perks. Some jobs didn’t start until 11:30am, which is a blessing for this night owl. It also allowed me the luxury of slowly transitioning into full-time work while also attending graduate classes full-time, too.

There were also some cons to working this schedule, too. It got tough going to a new home each day, partly because I thrive on consistency and also because this put me at significantly greater risk for contracting COVID-19 in any of these homes. I also wasn’t making enough money to pay my bills on the hours and the pay of an on-call nanny in my position. I dwindled my savings further than I already had in the previous month of unemployment.

I was thrilled when I was assigned a full-time position with a single family. Not only was I going to be working a 40 hour week, but I would be in the same home each day. My risk of COVID decreased. I would begin to establish a relationship with the kids I would be nannying and the family I would be working with. Even better, this schedule works perfectly with my graduate class schedule, and the location is a reasonable commute.

Working with children isn’t always fun and games (literally). On my tougher days, I remind myself of how grateful I am to have the work that I do, especially when I recount the low points I faced during my job hunt and unemployment.

That isn’t to say that I don’t feel low now, too. I feel low A LOT. Let’s talk about it.


I have never been a stranger to anxiety. Of course, my anxiety increases when I am facing a stressful event or have upcoming deadlines. Full-time work kind of feels like I always have an upcoming deadline. In other words, I get anxious each night knowing that I have a nine hour day of work ahead of me, topped with three hours of class and another hour of schoolwork.

I often feel the greatest dread on the car ride to work. I find myself indulging in my characteristic OCD behaviors as a mechanism to cope with my impending doom.

Again, my job is so great. I truly cannot express that enough. It isn’t my job that causes me to face such uneasiness. It is the responsibility of simply living as an adult.

Sunday Scaries

On a very related note, my Sunday Scaries are more real now than ever before. Of course as a college student I felt overwhelmed on a Sunday evening as I prepared for the week ahead of me, which was always filled with classes, schoolwork, extracurricular activities, and my part-time jobs.

In other words, I would’ve bet a month ago that I knew what Sunday Scaries were. I would lose that bet. My Sundays now consist of spending a few hours meal prepping my lunches and a few dinners to eat that week, since I don’t have time during the week to cook. It involves doing any housework that I fell behind on during the week. I spend many hours on the weekends doing my schoolwork, which I prefer to do Saturday and Sunday rather than after work and class on weekdays.

After the work is done and I can sit on the couch to enjoy a couple hours to myself, I frequently face those same feelings of anxiety and dread when I remember the immense responsibility that is to come in the next five days.

Some weeks are easier than others. Some are worse.

Panic Attacks

This past Sunday was the latter. I had just finished meal prepping for about two hours and had intentions to begin my schoolwork. I have a few projects, presentations, and final papers due within the coming few weeks, so I had a ton of work to attend to. Yet, I found myself self-sabotaging as I began to feel nauseous, lightheaded, and felt that familiar pounding of my heart. My vision blurred and I found it difficult to focus my eyesight on anything. My chest constricted, my limbs went cold and became sweaty, and I thought I might vomit.

And that, my friends, are the stereotypical onset symptoms of a panic attack. Luckily (or unfortunately, you decide), I have felt these feelings with enough frequency that I knew what was coming, and how to prevent it.

I distracted myself from my anxious thoughts to relieve the symptoms. It took about thirty minutes before I felt okay again.

I knew that my panic was triggered by my stress about starting my schoolwork, which is a large task to be completed and seems overwhelming. Until I actually start the work. Without fail, I feel less stressed about my work when I actually just sit down and do the work. The dread is the biggest obstacle to overcome.


I won’t lie, the best part about full-time work is the paycheck. I have never received a paycheck as large as my most recent paycheck, which was my first check of two weeks full-time. I thought I was rolling in dough.

Until I remember my rent, utilities, internet bill, car payments, groceries, work expenses, gas, student debt…

Being an adult with a full-time job means an increase in the size of your check and an increase in bills.


I seriously go to bed earlier than I have in the last decade of my life.

I am also tired all the time, despite going to bed early.

Sometimes I want to take a nap at work, although I definitely cannot do that. Sometimes I want to take a nap in class, which I have possibly considered once or twice.


Again, like the Sunday Scaries, I thought I knew real coffee drinking during my college years. In college, I sometimes drank three coffees a day during stressful work weeks.

Now, I drink at least three coffees a day, every day.

I don’t want to talk about full-time work as if it is the worst thing to happen to me. Yes, I am incredibly stressed, anxious, and exhausted. But a huge part of that is that I am simultaneously enrolled in full-time graduate classes. I also have a large emotional and social strain since my family, friends, and boyfriend live across the state, or further, and I have yet to meet anybody in my new city. Lastly, I am also predisposed to face greater psychological distress than some others, by nature.

And that’s okay! It is all about learning, adapting, and overcoming. Adjusting is never easy for anybody. Right now, I do my best to focus on the positives and remind myself of the things I am grateful for. And ultimately, I wouldn’t change my situation for anything, because I am proud of where I am in this part of my life.

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Apartment Hunt Advice (from a 22-year-old who has literally only done this once)

Yeah, okay, so I am definitely not the most qualified person to be giving out apartment search advice. I may have lived in three apartments by this age, but two of them were on-campus apartments that I literally didn’t have to do any prior research on.

In my defense, however, I did gain a lot of knowledge during my first apartment search that could possibly help somebody out there who has no idea where to even start when looking for their next home. So here’s my best tips and tricks for finding a great apartment.

General Location

First and foremost, you need to decide where you are moving to! For some, this is likely a no brainer – you’re moving to this city for school or that town for work. For others, it is a bit less certain. Maybe you know you want to move out of your hometown and to a new city but aren’t exactly sure which one to move to!

If you aren’t sure of the general location of where you want to move to, make a list of a few places that seem desirable to you. Take into consideration the job market in that area, the weather conditions, reliability of public transportation (if you are using it), cost of living, or how close or far it is from your hometown (for some, closer is better; for others, further may be advantageous). Consider any factor that will make a place seem more suitable to you.

Got a few places in mind? Great! Narrow them down to one. This likely won’t be an easy process, so don’t expect it to happen instantly, or even in a few days or weeks. Moving is a lengthy process, and this is only one step of many in apartment hunting.

Specific Location

Your next step will be to decide what part of the city/town you want to live in. What places or things to do are more important to you around which you want to live? This could be your school, your work, restaurants, grocery stores, parks… The list goes on and is completely dependent on you.

For me, I knew I wanted to live in the city and close to both my school campus and where I *anticipated* getting a job. Therefore, I chose an apartment that is in the city rather than on the outskirts or in the suburbs.

Are you relying on public transportation to get around? Make sure your apartment search includes proximity to a bus, train, or metro station.

It is also important to consider the safety of the neighborhood if this is an important factor for you. Again, this was important for me since I am living alone. Looking at neighborhoods on realtor sites like can offer a safety rating for that area.

The downside to being picky about these factors is that you will start to pay more for each one. A safer neighborhood usually means a higher rent, as does proximity to restaurants and bars, public parks, etc.

Cost of Living (Rent!)

With that all being said, you obviously have to keep your rent cost in mind. The common rule for target cost of rent is about 30% of your monthly income after taxes. So, if you make $15/hr at 40 hours per week, you would have a monthly income of $2,400 (before taxes), and should pay less than $720 per month.

This is often times not always reasonable. A lot of people nowadays suggest that your rent costs will be more like 40-50% of your monthly income as housing costs increase but wages remain the same.

You can combat this by splitting rent with roommates. Or, if you want to live alone, try a different part of the city, try the outskirts, or accept your rent prices and allocate your budget differently.

I fall into this last category – sucking it up and paying more for rent. I have always known that I wanted to live alone, partially because I don’t have any friends in the city that I moved to and didn’t want to risk living with a total stranger, and partially because I thrive on being alone. But, my wallet suffers for it.

An important cost to include that is often overlooked during apartment hunting is the cost of utilities per month. Some rent prices include some utilities, some rent prices include all utilities, and the rest include no utilities. Be sure to estimate to the best of your abilities how much you anticipate utilities to be each month and add that to your monthly budget.

This can differ for each person, too! Maybe you will work 40 hours a week and don’t anticipate being home as often as somebody who works from home. These individual differences will affect utility costs.

Apartment “specs”

Set of treadmills staying in line in the gym

Now for the fun stuff (in my opinion, at least)! Design your dream, but reasonable, apartment. How many bedrooms does it have? How many bathrooms? Does it have a yard or outdoor space? Does it include amenities such as a gym or pool? Do you want pets? Websites like can offer the opportunity to include these factors while apartment searching.


I touched on this briefly earlier, so I won’t spend too much time on it here. But it is a super important question to ask yourself – do you want/need roommates?

For some, roommates offer financial relief from paying the full rent. Splitting rent between two or three people can easily cut your rent significantly.  

For others, the thought of living alone is a scary and lonely thought. Perhaps you thrive on human interaction and company. Living with a roommate or multiple roommates is likely a better option for you. And the cheaper rent is an added bonus!


These are a few little tips that I learned along the way and figured I’d pass along.

Make sure your furniture will fit into the apartment. No, seriously, it’s a real concern. It seems so silly, I know, but my couch nearly didn’t fit into my current apartment. Since I was moving from across the state and we only rented a U-haul for one way, I would have literally had to have left my couch on the sidewalk to be trash picked or thrown away if it hadn’t fit into my apartment.

Don’t be like me. Ask your landlord what the doorframe measurements are before moving in (okay, in my defense, I did ask multiple times and just never received an answer, so it wasn’t totally my fault…). Consider other big furniture, too, like desks, bedframe, mattresses, etc. Also consider if you will be carrying anything up stairs or around tight corners. My sister almost couldn’t fit a box spring into her bedroom in one past apartment because it wouldn’t fit up the stairs and around a tight turn.

My best advice is to either: ensure an apartment is “big furniture-friendly” before signing a lease, purchasing smaller furniture, or purchasing furniture that can be constructed and deconstructed within one living space.

My next tip relates to moving trucks, if you rent one to move. The only thing I have to say about it is to “go small or go home.” By this I mean that you likely don’t need as big of a truck as you think. Measure your longest piece of furniture (for me, my couch) and get a truck that is at least this long, but not much bigger. Everything else that is in boxes can simply be stacked. Getting a bigger truck means that you will have a lot of dead space above your furniture and boxes that is simply wasted money.

This last tip is a bit more of a moving-related tip rather than an apartment-hunting tip, but important, nonetheless. My mom’s best advice to me was to pick up a few six packs before we even started moving my belongings into my apartment. In her wise words, a few beers for the family members would “make unpacking much more fun”! And, of course, this advice only applies to my 21 and older readers!!

That’s all folks

Best of luck to you as you look for your next home, which may be real nearby or maybe even across the world. I hope the knowledge I gained from my experience was even a little bit helpful to you as you embark on such a tedious and lengthy process!

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Vegetarian Lemon Chickpea Orzo Soup

I am not going to lie, I was blown away the first time I tried a variation of this recipe. I had saved it and put it in my recipe book nearly a year before I attempted making it, and boy do I regret not trying it sooner!

Since that first try, I have worked to refine, adapt, and change the dish to fit my preferences. For example, I am a huge fan of citrus-y flavors in dishes, such as lemon and lime (my guacamole recipe is chock full of lime!). So, I added a ton more lemon to this recipe than the original recipe called for (so be warned!).

This recipe is wonderful for any vegetarians looking for a soup that provides some protein. There are also some carbs in the soup, so it’ll leave you feeling full than a typical, less hearty soup would.

Vegetarian Lemon Chickpea Orzo Soup

Prep time: 5 minutes

Cook time: 25 minutes

Total time: 30 min

Serves: 2-4


  • 2 cups carrots, finely chopped
  • 1 white onion, chopped
  • 1 tsp oil
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 3 tbsp garlic
  • ½ tsp pepper
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 6 cups veggie broth
  • 1 can chickpeas
  • 1 cup orzo
  • Juice of 1-2 lemons (depending on preference)


  • Chop onion into bite-sized pieces. Peel and finely chop carrots.
  • Add butter and oil to large pan or wok and melt butter over medium heat. Once melted, add carrots, onion, garlic, pepper, and salt.
  • Cook for 7-10 minutes, stirring often. Onions should be transparent, and carrots should be soft.
  • Add veggie broth and bring dish to a boil. Once boiling, add chickpeas and orzo to pan. Bring heat down to low and cover dish. Cook for another 10-12 minutes, stirring occasionally. Orzo and chickpeas will cook fully in the liquid and veggies will become more tender.
  • Once cooked, add lemon juice. I add a lot of lemon juice because I love the lemony taste of this dish, but feel free to add less lemon if you prefer!
  • Serve this dish warm.

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My Job Hunt Experience + How To Do It Better Than Me

I applied to over 100 jobs before finding a job. It was a doozy.

I am going to try my hardest to keep this article as short as possible. But it will be lengthy regardless because it is a beefy topic and an experience that lasted three months. Let’s dive right in.

Some Background About Me

Before I start talking about my job search, I think it is important to highlight my educational and other job experience, as well as my career goals. These are factors that heavily influenced my search.

I graduated with a bachelor’s in child and family studies (a mix of psychology and sociology) and a combined major in Spanish. I am looking to pursue a career in counseling and am starting my master’s degree in family counseling. I had a lot of experience with psychology research during my undergraduate career as well as serving as a teaching assistant for statistics and psychology research design. I also worked two jobs in food services and worked as a resident assistant and lead resident assistant on my college campus.

Given my comprehensive experience in research, I figured this would be a great field to get into during the next few years spent in a master’s program. At the very least, I was looking for a job related to my field.

The Hunt Begins

I started my job hunt in June of 2020. At first, I was just browsing Indeed and looking at jobs in the city that I would be moving to for school in August. Quickly, I found research positions that I was interested in and I began to apply for jobs shortly after starting my search. At the beginning of my search, I also looked at working as an administrative assistant in an office setting.

As mentioned, I wanted a job in related to my previous experience and related to my desired field. I also had to keep in mind that the job had to be a daylight shift because I was enrolled in four courses during the week that began in the evening. As for pay, I hadn’t found and signed the lease for an apartment until the end of my second month job hunting, but I had a target rent in mind and looked for jobs that paid enough for me to pay for rent, utilities, car payments, tuition costs, groceries, some extra spending money for going out, and some to put into my savings. With all of this in mind, I decided that I would be searching for a job that paid at least $15 per hour and that was a typical 9-5 shift.

I also kept in mind the location of the positions, factoring in location to where I wanted to find an apartment and proximity to my college campus so I had enough time after work to get to class in time. I also wasn’t sure at this point if I would have a car or would rely on public transportation, so I tried to look no further than a ten-mile radius from my college campus.

Job Boards

I began by using Indeed exclusively. Sometimes, though infrequently, I would look directly at a company site for their job listings. Towards the end of the second month of my search, I looked also at Monster and ZipRecruiter and postings on Google. Indeed remained my favorite platform to use, but periodically I would look at job postings on these other job boards.

Time to Apply

As soon as it was time to apply for jobs, I realized how much time is required to apply for jobs. Wow. Job hunting really can be a job within itself. I would find myself settling down for the night and deciding to briefly look at new jobs on Indeed in case there were one or two that I might be interested in. I quickly found myself absorbed in the search, no matter how much I told myself that I would only look for ten minutes. I easily spent between 2-4 hours multiple times a week searching for and applying to jobs.

Job hunting doesn’t just involve looking at what is available. It involved creating your resume and changing it and updating it and modifying it to be specific for each job you apply to. It involves writing a cover letter that makes you stand out from 50 other candidates but that also fits the exact job you are applying to. I have a dozen different cover letters that are tailored for one specific position. One of my biggest mistakes was not doing this sooner, but I will get into that in a bit.

Job hunting is also incredibly tedious and repetitive. You are entering the same information about yourself for each position, with a few different questions each time that are specific for the role or company. I entered my previous work experience over fifty times into different website applications. Luckily, I applied to many jobs within the same large company and was able to save my information for easy application completion.

Lowering My Standards and Broadening My Search

Applying to research positions and administrative assistant jobs within my standards ($15/hr, daylight shift, weekdays, close to campus… etc.) was not looking too promising. I don’t think I got any emails or callbacks about scheduling interviews, meaning no company that I applied to found me to be a desirable candidate.

Consequently, I had to broaden my search. It began by looking at research and office jobs that paid a bit less than $15/hr. I also began to look at jobs with less conventional hours, such as weekend hours to early mornings (I still could not work past 5/5:30 because of class). I started looking at jobs besides research and administrative support. I found jobs for less pay that were more treatment based within my field, such as treatment aide positions in recovery centers or hospitals. I also looked into jobs such as elderly caregiving or customer service work.

Work Smarter, Not Harder

Well into my second month applying to jobs, I still wasn’t getting any interviews. I decided that I needed to work smarter, not harder. I spent more time working on my resume and cover letter and spent less time applying to every job possible.

I totally redesigned my resume, thanks to a pin my mom sent me on Pinterest (linked at the bottom of this article). It was a bit more modern looking than my old resume, which was more or less an outline of my educational and career experience. I created different resumes, too, based on the type of job I was applying to. I had a research-related resume, a medical experience resume, a customer service resume, and an office-related resume.

My cover letter got a ton of TLC as well. I also had different cover letter templates for different jobs and made them easy to tailor for each company and position.

An Unfortunate and Unavoidable Obstacle

I began to get more interviews and callbacks around the same time that I signed my lease, and I don’t think this is a coincidence. By this I mean that once I signed my lease, I could officially write that my address was in the city that I was applying to jobs in, whereas before my address was listed as a town across the state.

I believe that many companies may have looked at my resume or application briefly and dismissed it as soon as they saw that my current address was five hours away. Although this was not confirmed, it is a hunch based on my sudden increase in interview opportunities after adding my new address to my applications and resume.


Once I changed my address and revamped my resumes and cover letters, the interviews began to roll in. I was able to schedule four interviews during my first week in my new apartment in the new city – two administrative support positions, one elderly caregiver position, and one treatment aide position. These interviews were primarily done via video conferencing. If you have questions or concerns about interviewing for jobs or colleges over video conferencing software, check out my article “Interview Outfit Inspiration + My Favorite Office Attire.” I am kind of a zoom interview expert at this point!

The next week, I had one interview for a customer service position. The week after that, I had four more interviews – two nannying interviews, one treatment aide interview, and one research interview.

I also had a few companies reach out to me to set up an interview. A handful of these offers, I declined because I decided the job wasn’t a good fit or was too far out of my desired range for transportation (i.e. if I applied to a job outside the city to the north before finding my apartment in the southern part of the city, I had to decline the offer because the commute was not feasible with my confirmed apartment location). I agreed to interview for a few of these positions, and whether or not I ended up interviewing, these positions all fell through as a result of ceased communication from the company.

I was offered a position with an in-home caregiver company for elderly individuals. Around the time that I was offered the position, I received an offer to interview with another company that had better pay and offered the opportunity to work from home. I could have taken a job as an aide in a halfway house but decided that the hours were not compatible with my schedule.

So, Did I Find a Job?

Yes! After three months and 108 job applications, I received an offer for a position that checked all my boxes. I have begun work as a nanny for a great family. The pay is enough to keep me comfortable in paying my bills and other costs, the location is close enough to my apartment and my campus, and the job is related to my future career as I am working with children and the family.

A Breakdown of My Job Hunt

In total, I applied to 108 jobs. Below is a breakdown of the number of jobs I applied to in each category (research, treatment, administrative support, senior care, nannying, customer service, HR/staffing, and other). I also included the average pay for each category, based on the pay listed in the job posting. It is also important to note that not all jobs had a pay listed, so the averages do not include the pay from every job in the category.

  • I applied to 29 jobs in research, most of which were psychological or medical in nature. The average pay for these research jobs was $16 per hour.
  • I applied to 10 jobs related to treatment, most of which were psychological. The average pay for these treatment jobs was $14.80 per hour.
  • I applied to 40 jobs related to administrative/office support and most of these jobs were in a medical or business setting. The average pay for these administrative jobs was $14.32 per hour.
  • I applied to 2 jobs for senior care. The average pay for these senior care jobs was $14 per hour.
  • I applied to 7 nannying jobs. The average pay for these nannying jobs was $20.36 per hour (I will be honest, though, and say that my position is below this average).
  • I applied to 7 jobs related to customer service. These jobs were pretty diverse, ranging from guest relations in a spa to server jobs to customer service representative jobs. The average pay for these customer service jobs was $15.70 per hour.
  • I applied to 6 jobs in a human resources or staffing position. The average pay for these HR jobs was $17.72 per hour.
  • I applied to 7 jobs that had no category. These jobs included data entry, medical screening (temperature taking for COVID-19), and even a job as a breast milk donor screener. The average pay for these “random” jobs was $16.50 per hour.

Final Thoughts

Okay, this article is not short or brief in any way. But it is thorough and comprehensive and hopefully offers some insight to anybody starting, in the middle of, or finishing up their own job hunt.

I am not going to lie, it was really defeating at times. I was a successful student and offered great work in my previously held jobs, yet I still could not get a job!

I often had to remind myself that job hunting during the pandemic is a recipe for disaster. So many people were laid off and unemployment rates are high, so the applicant pool is higher than normal. I understand why a company would prefer a candidate with more experience who was recently laid off over me, a recent graduate with no experience.

Ultimately, I am grateful for the experience. It taught me a lot about holding myself accountable, about perseverance, about interviewing, and about refining what I want from my job. I am sure that I will find myself in another job hunt in the next few years, especially once I graduate from my master’s program and look for a job related to my degree, but now I have more extensive knowledge about how to perform a careful and successful job hunt.

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The Perfect Group Halloween Costume for You and Your Friends – Dress like the Cast of Selling Sunset


Christine is a blonde bombshell and she has the personality to match. She is fiery, honest, and brutal (especially to her rival, Chrishell). Her style is just as edgy as she is.

To be Cristine, you need to be bold. She often wears animal prints, such as leopard print or snakeskin. Her long, blonde hair is usually pulled back into a high ponytail, and she frequently spices it up with tight braids and hair jewelry. Try wearing a pair of dainty, fur heels to add another dimension to this look.

As for jewelry, Cristine layers her dainty necklaces. She has a ton of ear piercings and always flashes her ear bling.

Her makeup isn’t too flashy, besides her lips which are ALWAYS bold, bright, and sassy. Wear a bright red lip and a simple smokey eye makeup look to capture Cristine’s style.


Let’s move onto Cristine’s nemesis, Chrishell. Chrishell started season one as the “new girl” and her style reflected the soft and sweet woman that she was in these first episodes. However, as she gains more confidence in the Oppenheim Group, her style becomes bolder as well.

Chrishell always wears sweet colors and patterns. Florals are her go-to pattern and you can always find her wearing bright colors, like pink or salmon.

As for makeup, Chrishell’s eye makeup is never too flashy but always coordinates with her outfit. A pink dress calls for pink eye shadow and blush.

Chrishell’s staple jewelry piece is big hoop earrings, but otherwise doesn’t wear a ton of accessories.

Style your hair like Chrishell by wearing it down, long, and slightly wavy. Bonus points if your hair is brown and blonde balayage like hers.


Mary is the oldest member of the real estate agents in the Oppenheim Group, but she could easily pass for a twenty-five-year-old given her youthful glow and style. Mary does a great job at mixing classy with casual pieces.

Try pairing a tight dress with a jean jacket or blazer to get this classy-yet-casual look that Mary always rocks. She likes to wear bright colors, too, such as blues and pinks. Her favorite pattern or texture to wear is lace, adding to her soft style.

Mary’s short blonde hair is always worn down and is usually tucked behind one ear.

Makeup is always light when worn by Mary. Try natural makeup looks that brighten your face. Similarly, she typically favors light, dainty gold jewelry.

Throughout the seasons, more and more of Mary’s tattoos are revealed to the watchers. Bonus points if you invest in some temporary tattoos and wear them on your back and arms like Mary’s!


Heather is the innocent little sister of the group, trying her best to stay neutral on a lot of the drama that takes place inside and outside of the workplace. Similarly, her style is simple and soft, clearly in no competition with anybody else to be flashy or loud.

Heather typically wears a simple dress, that is a soft color or classic white. She infrequently wears any patterns, nor does she wear pieces that stray far from the normal dress silhouette.

Her makeup and jewelry, too, are simple. Go for a natural makeup look and wear small gold earrings with no necklace to capture Heather’s style.

Heather has healthy, mid-length blonde hair that is worn straight, down, blunt.

Heather does, however, seem to have lip fillers, so bonus points if you can overdraw your lips while maintaining a very natural look.


Maya is a strong and independent woman who takes no sh*t from any other member of the Oppenheim group, yet does so elegantly and with such class that she is easily liked by everybody. Maya grew up in Israel and moved to the United States where she quickly gained success and now gracefully balances her jobs as a real estate agent and a mom.

Maya maintains a professional look that comprises on earth tones and the occasional edgy piece. She is often seen wearing dark jeans, an earth-toned shirt, and a black leather jacket.

She favors the smokey eye look, but otherwise keeps it light with the makeup. To complement the earth tones of her wardrobe, she pairs her looks with dainty gold jewelry.

Style your hair straight, down, and braided on one side to capture Maya’s look.

Maya becomes a mom in season one of Selling Sunset and had another baby in season two. Bonus points if you tie this into your costume!


Davina is a character that I am personally still trying to figure out myself! She is sometimes quiet, reserved, and focused on her personal success, but other times finds herself involved in the drama of the group. Of these two sides of Davina, her style leans more towards the former.

Davina’s wardrobe is the least flashy or bright of all the women. To be Davina, wear a simple black dress.

She does, however, always spice up her look with a strong smokey eye to bring some more dimension to her otherwise simple look.

Davina’s black hair is always straight and worn down with no other styling.

Her speech is rather monotonous, so bonus points if you can maintain the same monotony while dressed up as her.

Selling Sunset


Amanza was introduced to the show on season two. She and Mary seem to have an extensive past relationship together and the two quickly reveal and maintain this close friendship. Amanza is a single mom who works hard to offer her children the best lives possible and has the badass personality and style to complement her work ethic.

Amanza always wear statement clothing pieces. Try to find darker and earthy tones that are uncommon patterns. Further, the shapes of her pieces are edgy and flashy, too, with unique silhouettes.

To match this bold style, Amanza can be seen wearing a slicked back high ponytail or bun.

Her bold style doesn’t stop here. Pair this look with statement silver earrings and a statement necklace to match.

Her makeup, however, isn’t often anything more than a simple and natural look. Wear a nude lipstick to tie everything together.

Jason and Brett

The twin brothers who own the Oppenheim group are stylish in a professional way. They are, by no means, as flashy as the women in the group. Rather, they choose to wear classic styles.

Wear a checkered button up shirt, paired with blue trousers and brown dress shoes to capture their look. Sometimes, they are seen wearing glasses, too, whether they wear them for reading or for fashion.

The brothers have small dogs that sometimes visit the office. Bonus points of you carry around a stuffed (or real!) dog.


Romain is the mid-twenties French hottie that Mary dates and eventually marries in season two. Romain is kind but can bite back when he is mocked or talked about by any of the women in the Oppenheim Group.

To style your look like Romain, wear a simple, black, collared, button up shirt. Maybe leave the last few buttons unbuttoned. Any dark jean works to match Romain’s style.

Romain has thick, full, voluminous black hair that is always styled perfectly. He also has dark and full eyebrows, so bonus points if you can fill your eyebrows to capture this look.

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“Big Mouth” Hormone Monstress and Monster Halloween Costumes

Halloween is right around the corner (kinda, not really… Okay, it’s only the middle of September, but sometimes you gotta start planning early!) which means that it’s time to pick the perfect Halloween costume.

Halloween may look a little different this year thanks to COVID-19, unless you live in a country which has leadership that handled the pandemic responsibly… But that doesn’t mean you don’t have an excuse to dress up this year. Maybe dress up and have a mini Halloween party with your roommates or family members. Maybe dress up and do a Zoom call with friends to socialize from a distance. Regardless, if you get creative, you can find a reason to get into costume this year.

Who is the Hormone Monstress?

You may be wondering who the Hormone Monstress is, or what Big Mouth is. If you are wondering, that means you haven’t watched the show, and if that’s the case – shame on you! Just kidding, sort of.

Big Mouth is an iconic animated series that follows a class of middle schoolers who are transitioning through puberty, poking fun at the awkward time of our lives while also doing a great job of educating and normalizing things like menstrual cycles, body hair, and emerging sexual urges.

The Hormone Monster and Hormone Monstress are the physical embodiments of hormones and are assigned to the tweens once they enter puberty to guide them in their decision-making processes. Both characters are witty, comical, and raw. The Hormone Monstress, or Connie, is sassy and flirty, and she has great style and confidence.

I dressed up as the Hormone Monstress last year for Halloween and it was easily my favorite Halloween costume that I have ever worn, which says a lot because I live for Halloween. My boyfriend accompanied me and dressed up as the Hormone Monster, and we got more compliments on our costumes than I can count! Our costumes were immediately recognizable to anybody who has seen or heard of Big Mouth.

Great! How do I get the look?

For reference, here is a picture of my costume from last year paired with the scene that I was imitating in this picture! Now I’ll get into the individual pieces that made this costume come together.

First and foremost, I had to find a top and bottoms that were similar enough to Connie’s fur that it would be recognizable enough to only wear plain clothes and not wear a full costume. Her fur is a reddish brown and a golden yellow, and she has long fluffy dark reddish-brown hair. So, I was looking for a top and a bottom that incorporated earthy red, orange, and yellow tones.

I found an orange body suit at Forever 21 that I thought looked similar enough to Connie’s darker fur. I found a yellow miniskirt that was pretty dang close to her yellow fur. Both items were functional, too. They were comfortable and the long sleeved body suit offered some warmth for when I would be out at night on Halloween weekend.

The next iconic piece that I knew I had to find was an accessory to match Connie’s horns. I found a headband on Amazon that was originally made for devil horns, I believe, and painted over the original colors with a pattern that matched that of Connie’s horns. This part of the process took the longest and required the most effort, so plan accordingly!

To tie in the dark red of Connie’s hair (since I am very much blonde and not at all brunette), I bought a burgundy scrunchie that had fabric ribbons hanging down and styled my hair in a half up, half down style using the scrunchie. It added that color without requiring me to wear a wig or change my hair color.

Speaking of hair, Connie’s hair is long and full, so I decided to wear my hair straight and fluffy.

For the shoes, I considered buying a pair of yellow heels or boots to match Connie’s yellow hooves. I considered thrifting a pair of shoes to then paint yellow. Ultimately, I found a pair of black, square-toed leather booties that I knew I could use for the outfit and in my daily style. They were thrifted and a bit beat up, but were comfortable enough, stylish, and a really great brand, too!

I found some really awesome, big and dangly tortoise shell earrings at Forever 21 while shopping for this costume that I couldn’t resist finding an excuse to buy. I figured they matched the tone of my costume well enough that I could use that an a reason to purchase the earrings, but the earrings were also cute and functional enough that I would (and do) wear them all the time in my day-to-day style!

Connie does have fangs, so I invested a bit in stick on fangs that individually stuck to my teeth. I used denture cream to adhere them to my teeth, which was a bit weird and definitely had a strange texture, but it did the job. The set that I purchased were great, too, because there were varying fang sizes.

Connie’s hands are a pale cream/white color, so wearing gloves would work well for this costume. I decided to just paint my nails white to tie in that color scheme. I also purchased fur bracelet thingies that I wanted to dye yellow, but the dye didn’t stick, and I ended up not using them at all.

Lastly, I am far from a makeup guru and wouldn’t consider myself anything more than half decent at applying my own makeup, so I kept it minimal. Connie has orangish eyebrows, so I filled my brows thicker than usual and colored them with a reddish-orange eye shadow. I used a corresponding palelte for my eye makeup, which I applied rather heavy and with a smokey look in mind. For lipstick, Connie’s lips are a dark pinkish color, so I applied pink matte lipstick.

For the Hormone Monster

Here’s a bonus for you – if you have a friend who wants to dress up as the Hormone Monster, here are a few clothing items that my boyfriend wore to get the look.

We thrifted a pair of dark brown pants and a tan/yellow long-sleeved shirt from Goodwill. The pants were very baggy and big on my boyfriend, which we thought captured the way the Hormone Monster sits back on his legs a bit. The shirt was tight on my boyfriend, also capturing the fact that the Hormone Monster doesn’t wear a shirt.

For the Hormone Monster’s ears and single horn, we purchased a unicorn headband from Amazon, and I painted it the in the same pattern as the Hormone Monster’s horn. I added cardboard pieces to the headband to act as his ears, which I also painted accordingly.

We paired the look with a green fanny pack to mimic the one the Hormone Monster wears in this scene. This was functional, too, to carry our phones, wallets, keys, and extra fangs!

My boyfriend also wore the same fangs that I wore. We painted his chest with black eyeliner to match the chest hair and collarbones of the Hormone Monster.

We had so much fun with this costume last year. I think we executed it pretty well, which makes it difficult to top this year!

Hopefully this post serves as some inspiration for you, and maybe you’ll even dress up as the Hormone Monster and/or Monstress! If you do, send me a picture to!!!

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Easy and Quick Sweet Corn Vegetable Soup

Similar to my last recipe posted for Sweet Potato and Tofu Hash, this recipe was pretty improvised. I had planned to make a soup that is similar but is served cold. However, I quickly learned that I didn’t have enough ingredients, nor a proper blender and strainer, to make that recipe in its totality. So, we ended up with this recipe and it did not disappoint!

It is quick and easy, nutritious and delicious, vegetarian and vegan!

Easy and Quick Sweet Corn Vegetable Soup

Prep time: 5 minutes

Cook time: 20 minutes

Total time: 25 min

Serves: 2-4


  • 1 white onion
  • 2 orange bell peppers
  • 2 cans sweet corn
  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter
  • Oil
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp black pepper
  • 1 cup veggie broth
  • 1 cup water


  • Chop the orange pepper and white onion into small, bite-sized pieces.
  • Drain the corn.
  • Melt the butter on a large pan or wok and add a little oil, using medium heat.
  • Add the onion, peppers, corn, garlic to the pan.
  • Add salt and pepper and mix.
  • Cook the veggies in the pan for about 10 minutes, until the onions turn transparent and are soft. Stir frequently. I like to move onto the next step once the corn and peppers begin to char a bit.
  • Once the veggies are soft, add 1 cup veggie broth and 1 cup water.
  • Cover and bring the dish to a boil. Once boiling, uncover and cook for about 5-7 minutes, mixing frequently.
  • Serve warm.

I love this recipe for a warm fall meal. It is healthy and full of veggies, and it is vegetarian, too! It is super easy to customize to your preferences, as well. Add more veggies, add some protein, add some carbs. Serve it as a side or as a main dish. Whatever you choose to do, remember to take a few moments to take in the feelings of fall, because she is upon us!

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Sweet Potato and Tofu Hash

I don’t plan on being one of those blogs that writes a manifesto before giving you the recipe, because you don’t care about why I love this recipe and I don’t have much to say about it.

I will say, though, that it is delicious and super easy. I threw all these ingredients together one night when I didn’t have enough groceries for any one recipe but had a few of my favorite ingredients just laying around. I have played around with the recipe since then and have refined it to what you will find below. I am sure it’ll change more over time, and I encourage you to put your own spin on it and get creative!

This recipe is also super nutritious. It is protein-packed with the tofu (a meat substitute), black beans, and chickpeas. The sweet potatoes offer carbs, and the various vegetables add color to this dish! It is also a vegatarian dish!

Anyways, here’s the recipe!

Sweet Potato and Tofu Hash

Prep time: 30 minutes

Cook time: 40 minutes

Total time: 1 hr 10 min

Serves: 2-4


  • 2 sweet potatoes
  • 1 block extra firm tofu
  • One can black beans
  • One can sweet corn
  • One can chickpeas
  • 1 medium sweet onion
  • Olive oil
  • Cinnamon (to taste)
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • Cumin (to taste)
  • Garlic powder (to taste)
  • Salt and pepper (to taste)


  • Begin by pressing your extra firm tofu for at least 30 minutes before cooking. If you do not have a tofu press, line a baking sheet with a lot of paper towels or a towel, place the tofu on the towels, top with more towels and a baking sheet, and place something heavy on top to press the tofu.
  • When you are ready to start cooking, peel your sweet potatoes and dice them into bite-sized pieces. The smaller you dice them, the quicker they will cook.
  • Throw diced sweet potatoes into a bowl and add olive oil to coat. Toss sweet potatoes in cinnamon and brown sugar.
  • Spread evenly on a baking sheet or in a baking dish and cook at 425 degrees Fahrenheit for between 25-35 minutes, until tender. The brown sugar will slightly caramelize, so be careful scooping the sweet potatoes off the tray to avoid crushing them.
  • While potatoes are cooking, cut the tofu into bite size chunks. Heat a skillet to medium with a little oil (although cooking with a non-stick pan with no oil will be the best option for crispiness). Add the tofu pieces and cook, flipping occasionally to ensure browning on all sides.
  • Add cumin, garlic powder, salt and pepper to taste. I prefer to add more cumin than anything else, but these ingredients can be completely tailored to your preferences.
  • Heat a large skillet or wok on medium-low heat with a little oil and a little butter. Dice the onion and throw into the skillet to cook. When onions start to turn golden and a bit transparent, begin preparing the black beans, corn, and chickpeas. Drain and wash the black beans, drain the chickpeas and the corn, and toss into the skillet with the onions.
  • Add cumin, garlic powder, salt and pepper.
  • Continue to cook in the skillet until the black beans and chickpeas are cooked.
  • When the tofu is browned and crispy on all sides, add to the large skillet/wok.
  • Once the sweet potatoes are cooked, add them to the skillet with all the other ingredients. Mix everything to incorporate all flavors.
  • Serve warm.

Like I said, this recipe is always different when I cook it. Sometimes I have half of a pepper in my fridge that I want to use, so I throw it into the skillet (like I did this time). Sometimes I don’t add the corn, and other times I add quinoa.

Regardless of how I prepare this recipe, I always want to go back for seconds, which isn’t typical of me! In fact, when I cook this dish with my boyfriend, we often fight over who gets the last little bit!

Even better, this dish is great reheated too, so I love to make it as a meal prep dish for throughout the week.

I encourage you to try this recipe, and to then change it. Make it your own. You want to add meat? Go for it! You hate onions and would rather incorporate Brussels sprouts? Great idea! Be creative and make substitutions and additions. This is my favorite part of cooking. It is a creative outlet to express your taste and to make something that is perfectly tailored to you.

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Cheap Décor Ideas + My Favorite DIY Décor

Not all interior design has to break the bank.

My interest in interior design and aesthetically pleasing décor began years and years before I lived in my own space, thanks to HGTV and Chip and Joanna Gaines. But, when you’re young, you probably don’t have the money to spurge on a television sized clock or modern rustic hanging light fixture. The beauty of being a real-life adult is that I now have the liberty to splurge on interior design – yet I still don’t. That’s because over the years I have learned how to decorate for much cheaper.

You can have great decorations for your home if you are willing to put in some time, effort, and creativity. And, you don’t have to break the bank to do so.

Upcycle old jars.

Not only is saving and reusing jars sustainable and environmentally friendly, it also offers a functional way to decorate your living space. Clean, remove the labels from, and save your old pickle or jam jars. Try using mod podge to adhere a piece of craft paper or a ribbon to a jar to bring some color into the project. I use my upcycled jars to store cotton rounds, Q-tips, and my toothbrush and toothpaste. Now, I have more storage on my bathroom counter that is functional and cute.

Reuse candle jars.

Instead of throwing away your old candle jars, try upcycling them, too. You can use them for storage, just like old food jars. I like to use my old candle jars as pots for my smaller plants. Adding some paint, craft paper, or ribbon can transform these would-be trashed items into cheap and stylish home décor.

I’ll be the first to admit that removing the candle wax from the glass isn’t the easiest task in the world. There are a variety of methods out there to try. I freeze the jar for easier wax removal. But be careful scraping the wax – knives have been broken in the process!

Create your own art.

Find your medium. Watercolor on paper? Oil on fabric? Pencil on wood? Crayon on printer paper? Personally, I have always done acrylic on canvas (basic, I know). Whatever it is, find your niche, your style, and you have the creative liberty to design art exactly how you want it. And you’ll do it for a lot cheaper than buying an expensive art piece.

Don’t expect to be amazing from the start, unless you are already amazing from the start. I began when I was in middle school. I painted a simple rainbow ombre pattern on a small canvas, and I loved it for years! Slowly, I began to try new techniques, invested in better brushes, and ventured outside my comfort zone. Even when I messed up, the overall work was good enough to use as a decoration in my living space. Now, I have a large collection of canvases that I have created over the years and can use in my apartment to fill blank walls.

Learn a new skill for versatile benefits.

Learning a new skill is beneficial in many different ways, and if the skill is artistic or crafty in any way, it can be turned into décor for your home. For example, learning handlettering or calligraphy can be a practical skill in certain careers, for other hobbies, or for creating beautiful art to hang in your home.

Personally, I don’t practice handlettering. But, my sister acquired the skill a few years ago and has since been working to refine the ability. She creates stunning pieces of work for friends, family, and clients. She has opened a small business, called Scallop Designs (@scallopdesignco on Instagram – check her out!), to promote her work and draw more customers. The photos below are a few of the decorations that she gifted to me that now hang in my living room.

This type of work is not only a way to decorate your home but also offers an example of putting a skill to work to earn extra income! Look into various hobbies and skills that interest you and learn how you can profit from it.

Thrift picture frames.

The next two tips require that you venture to a thrift store, provided you have the means to travel to one. If not, try looking at thrift websites and apps, such as LetGo.

No, this tip is not to buy cheap picture frames to frame pictures.

Go to the home section and scope out the picture frames. One you’ve found a few frames that in a style that you like, head over to a craft store and pick up some spray paint. I love gold spray paint to match my interior design style, but black or white are great neutrals, or get funky and purchase a bright color like pink or green! Now, go outside, remove the backing from the frame, lay the frame on some newspaper or an old cloth, and spray paint that bad boy!

You may be thinking, “if this tip isn’t encouraging me to buy cheap picture frames to frame pictures, what is it about?”

You decide. Picture frames are incredible versatile pieces of décor. Try printing a graphic from online and framing it. Maybe dry some flowers and frame them against a white piece of paper. Or simply hang the frame without its back for a simple design.

Thrift mirrors.

Mirrors are a timeless decoration that not only offer aesthetics but also work to make a room feel larger by reflecting any light present in the room.

While searching for picture frames at your local thrift store, keep an eye out for old mirrors, too. Follow the same steps as the previous tip: find a mirror in your style, buy some spray paint, and spray paint the frame. However, it may be trickier to remove the mirror from the frame. Instead, I like to place newspaper on the mirror, taping it down or placing something heavy on top so ensure the mirror doesn’t get accidentally spray painted. If you get paint on the mirror, try using a razorblade to scrap the paint off.

Mirrors are great because they can be hung, rested on a tabletop, or even placed on the floor against a wall. The opportunities to style a mirror are endless – just keep your mind open and try different placements until you find one you love.

Go to Etsy, find a few items you love, and try to recreate them yourself for cheaper.

This is my life hack for giving presents to others. For example, I knew I wanted to get my older brother a plant related gift for his birthday. I scoured Etsy for some cool ideas and found a few that I thought I could execute myself. I decided on a hanging plant shelf (pictured below). I found similar materials at Michael’s and Home Depot, used some tools I had around the house, and created a hanging shelf by myself for cheaper than what was listed on Etsy. In the process, I built one for myself, too, since I had to purchase the string in bulk and was left with a lot of excess that would’ve gone to waste otherwise.

Nobody should have to choose between aesthetics and saving money. These decoration ideas can help you save money and allow you to create your exact style. Plus, it is an ego boost when somebody compliments an art piece that you designed or a plant shelf that you built!

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Interview Outfit Inspiration + My Favorite Office Attire

In my experience, one of the most nerve-wracking parts of an interview is deciding what outfit to wear. On one hand, I want to be professional. On the other, I want to wear something that will catch the eyes of my interviewers and make a lasting impression. I want to wear something comfortable, but not all office wear is super comfy. And the question always remains – is the office environment more casual or formal?

I have spent a lot of time preparing for and participating in interviews over the last year. I have put together a considerable office attire wardrobe and have refined a few outfits that I always turn to for interviews, ranging from casual to professional.


Not all interviews are super formal, and overdressing may send the wrong message to the interviewers. However, there are ways to maintain professionalism without overdressing.

This outfit is great for a less formal interview! The top is soft and flowy and similar to a baseball tee style. The neutral colors paired with a pop of color pairs professionalism with originality.

The pants are not jeans and not dress pants. They are the Pixie pant from Old Navy, which is one of my favorite go-to pants. The fit is snug but stretches, allowing mobility while ensuring a flattering fit.

Since the outfit is casual, feel free to pair it with some fun shoes! Here, I paired it with a pair of yellow flats from Old Navy, adding more color to the outfit.

One of my favorite fashion styles is mixing seasons. For instance, I paired a fall/winter mock neck sweater with a pair of lightweight, capri pants.

The sweater provides comfort and warmth, in case the interview is in an air-conditioned office. However, you will not be overheated given the flow of the pants.

I paired this look with a pair of warm, camel colored flats. Since this outfit is casual, I didn’t feel the need to pair it with heels, but it can easily be dressed up with some heels and jewelry!

Happy Medium

The next interview outfits are a really happy medium between casual and professional. By this I mean that it can be dressed up or down really nicely. Also, the pieces are a bit pricier than those in the casual category.

The shirt is a blouse that was thrifted from a local Goodwill (so not exactly “pricey” as aforementioned). Any patterned blouse works great for this outfit. This shirt also has ruching on the shoulders, drawing attention upwards and accenting my posture.

The pants are from H&M and SO COMFY! I bought them in two colors – cream and teal, and they are my new go-to pants.

I didn’t pair this outfit with any shoes for the picture, but flats or heels would complement the outfit well. Try to match the color to your shirt to get funky, or keep to a neutral color to maintain more professionalism.

Any dress can be styled to be more or less formal. This Lands End dress is an awesome office or interview dress. It is an appropriate length and doesn’t slide up as I walk. The material is soft and thick. It is form fitting but definitely not a body con dress.

Many different patterns are appropriate for interview dresses. This small floral pattern works great, but so does a larger floral or something geometric. A solid color is also great, too!

I love the cap sleeves of this dress, which give the dress a little more dimension and character.

I would pair this dress with a pair of black flats or heels, depending on the level of professionalism of the office or interview.

I love love LOVE this outfit! One of my absolute favorite styles is a blouse tucked into a mid-length skirt. The pattern of this skirt is beautiful and the solid colored blouse accents the colors in the skirt.

The top is from Old Navy (I believe). It isn’t one of my favorites, if I am being honest. It is a thin material that wrinkles really easily (as pictured!). I also tend to sweat a lot and this shirt doesn’t do me any favors in combatting that issue.

The skirt is from SHEIN (from which I no longer purchase clothing). Consequently, it is a cheap material and also quite thing. But, it has been great for short interviews or virtual interviews, or Instagram pictures!


Formal might just be my favorite category, but only because I finally found great pieces to add to my wardrobe. Formal office attire is also my favorite type of clothing to thrift because I deem it a major win if I find a great piece for way cheaper than retail.

For example, this pink blazer was thrifted from a local Goodwill! It is arguably my favorite thrift find, for many reasons. It is a great material, a fun and unique color, and fits me perfectly.

I pair this blazer with neutral tones and my grey work pants (also thrifted). Since the blazer and pants are solid, I like to wear a patterned blouse. The shirt is a hand-me-down from my older sister, who got it from New York & Company.

I pair this outfit with a pair of black heels to tie in the black of the blouse.

This outfit was one of my first professional outfits that I acquired. I bought both the shirt and the pants from Express for a psychological conference at which I was presenting my research. It is such a fun outfit because it is professional but also young and stylish.

The shoes are from Forever 21 I believe, so they aren’t exactly quality shoes, nor are they comfortable. But, they do the job for presenting at a conference or interviewing for a job.

This pantsuit is the most expensive outfit I have in my office wardrobe. I splurged on this blazer and matching pants since I needed a really professional outfit for my PhD interview (which I was not accepted to – check out my blog post about how I applied to seven psychology PhD programs… and wasn’t accepted to any of them).

The pants were custom hemmed for these shoes, which I got from Target.

I wore a different shirt for my interview, but the one pictured here was thrifted from Goodwill and is originally from the Loft.

These are only a few of my office pieces and are the ones I most often gravitate towards for interviews. For example, I wore the first outfit in the “Happy Medium” category today for a virtual interview! For tips about what to wear for virtual and video interviews, take a look at my blog post about Zoom interview tips to help you snag that job.

Nobody should have to compromise style and fashion for professionalism. Don’t be afraid to try new styles and mix different pieces, and find what complements your body and personality best to make a lasting impression on your potential employer!

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