SinfulColors Kylie Jenner Denim & Bling Collection

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Thanks to Influenster I recently had the opportunity to try the SinfulColors Kylie Jenner Denim & Bling polish collection.

 

Once I was notified that I qualified for the SinfulColors Virtual VoxBox from Influenster, I quickly headed to Walgreens to see what the collection was all about.  I was was unexpectedly  disappointed.   When I think about a Kardashian  collaborating with a company for a nail polish collection, I picture bright and bold colors.   But, none of the colors in the collection really stood out to me.   Does anyone remember when the Kardashian’s did a line in 2011 with Nicole by OPI?  I loved those shades, I think that’s what I was expecting from Kylie’s collab with SinfulColors.  I’m really picky when it comes to my nail polish, I don’t really care for shimmery colors, or glitter polishes that aren’t opaque.  It was really  hard for me to choose a color that I thought I would like.

The first time I went to Walgreens to find a shade, I didn’t purchase anything because nothing caught my eye.   The collection has 13 different shades, each one giving off a textured matte look.  In typical Kardashian fashion, just about every shade has a name that begins with a K.  Shades like ‘Acid Wash’ and ‘Kameleon’ give a matte pearl look, while shades like ‘Kobalt’ and ‘Kargo’ give a matte metallic look.  I ended up choosing the shade ‘Karats of Kargo’, a gold glittery color.  I thought it would be an opaque glitter, but it was actually a clear polish with gold glitter.

 

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I didn’t test the shade out until I got to the nail salon this past Saturday I was really disappointed when I realized what the actual shade was, shame on me for not doing a swatch prior to purchasing!

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When the polish dried, it looked as if it were a glitter based acrylic, which I actually liked. Since its Summer and I was looking for a bright and bold look I decided to use a Julep polish in the shade’Randi’ to add a little pop to my nails.  Surprisingly I was happy with the end result, and I’ve gotten several compliments.

Overall, I thought the collection was just okay…  I don’t want to waste my polish so I’ll probably add it over top of a lighter color like ‘Funny Bunny’ by OPI.

Have you tried the SinfulColors Kylie Jenner Denim & Bling collection?  If so, which shades are your favorite?

Until next time lovies…

The Importance of Toner

Toner

 

I keep my daily skin care regimen fairly simple.  I do use masks and exfoliators once a week but my normal routine consists of washing, toning and moisturizing my skin.  Recently I posted a blog on Skin Care While Traveling.   One of the key things I mentioned for caring for your skin while traveling was to tone your skin to reset your skins pH.  One of my favorite bloggers and fellow Queen of a Feather Style Junkie asked a good question: What does toner do?

That’s an awesome question because I didn’t realize how many people don’t use to toner and are unsure of what it does. So… I’ve got the answers for you!

Toner does many things from cleansing the skin to preventing ingrown hairs

It resets the pH balance of the skin.

When we cleanse our skin, it disrupts the natural acidity of our skin.  This causes the skin to go into protection mode so that the balance of acidity can be restored,  many times people suffer from oily skin because of this.  Using toner allows the acidity to be restored quickly

It adds a barrier of protection 

Toners assist with closing pores.  Closed pores prevents impurities like dirt and oil from entering the skin.  Toner can even assist in removing certain minerals that are present in tap water (I’ve been thinking about ceasing washing my skin with tap water… we’ll see about that)

It shrinks pores

My pores are HUGE I mean they are just ridiculously noticeable.  I can tell when I do not use toner, because toner  removes oil from the skin and gives the appearance that the pores are smaller.

 

 

 

It’s an excellent moisturizer

Many toners on the the market are humectants, this means they assist with keeping the skin moisturized

It prevents ingrown hairs

One of the benefits of using toners that contain glycolic or alpha hydroxy acids is that they help with preventing ingrown hairs

It’s an excellent skin refresher

Toner can be used to cleanse the skin when its oily or dirty while on the go.  When I’m out on a hot sunny day I like to keep a small bottle in my purse to help remove some of the icky feeling you get from being sweaty all day.

 

My favorite toners are:

Rare Earth Pore Refining Toner by Kiehls

Cucumber Lotion by Mario Badescu

Diluted Organic Apple Cider Vinegar

 

For those that are already using toner, which one is your favorite? I’d love to hear back from you!

Until next time…

Spring Cleaning: How Often Should You Clean Your Brushes?

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Last week I was chatting with one of my good good girlfriends and of course the topic of skin care came up. I’m always on my friends speed dial when they have any kind of ailment or skin issue, since I seem to always have a good remedy or product recommendation. My GGF (good good girlfriend) was saying that her skin was breaking out and she couldn’t figure out why. So I went down my normal list of questions:

How are your eating habits? Good 

Have you been going to the bathroom regularly? Yep 

Are you keeping your hands and cell phone clean? Yes

What about your makeup brushes, are you washing them regularly? *silence*

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Ding ding ding!!!  She had no idea that she needed to clean her makeup brushes, and had been using the same dirty brushes for YEARS!!!   Ladies this is NOT acceptable behavior, your makeup brushes must be cleaned regularly even if you do not use them often.

It’s actually recommended by dermatologists that we wash our makeup brushes daily… But ummmm who has time for that?  So washing your brushes weekly is acceptable.  For me, I’m going to be honest since I don’t wear makeup daily, I wash my brushes about once every two weeks.

Danger Zone

Using dirty brushes on your skin can cause numerous issues.  Breakouts are a huge consequence of using dirty brushes.  This is because over time the brushes become caked with residue, built up product, oil, skin cells and BACTERIA!!!

Cleaning Tips

Cleaning your brushes is super simple, you can purchase brush cleaners from brands like e.l.f., Clinique, Mary Kay and M.A.C.  Since I’m a cheap skate I just use Dr. Bronner’s Castile Oil Soap.  You can also use: unscented bar soap, dish detergent and even baby wash to clean your brushes.  Also, when my brushes are super caked with product I like to use avocado or olive oil to break down the gunk easily.

Brushes can be clean in  a few easy steps:

  1. Gently work the shampoo on the brushes with your fingers (be sure to avoid the barrel so that you don’t cause the brush to loosen)
  2. Press the water out with a towel
  3. Reshape the bristles and lay them flat so that the brushes can fully dry

Whatever you do, DO NOT soak your brushes!!!  This can cause the glue to loosen leading to the bristles to loosen from the barrel.

How often are you cleaning your brushes?  What products do you use?  I’d love to get suggestions from you guys!

Stay tuned as I continue my Spring Cleaning segment and discuss when you should throw your makeup away!

Until next time….

Go Matte!!! But, Take Care of Your Lips

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I absolutely LOVE matte lipstick.  Many of you probably remember when I purchased 35 matte lipsticks back in January.  The madness hasn’t stopped with me purchasing matte lipstick, as I’ve recently jumped on the ColourPop Cosmetics bandwagon.  Their Ultra Matte Lippies are LIFE!!!  Even though I’m obsessed with matte lipstick, there is a downside to the wearing the chic and sassy product… Matte lippies can be damaging to your skin on the lips!!!

Regular lipstick typically has three main ingredients: wax, pigment and oil.  With matte lipstick the amount of wax and pigment is increased and the amount of oil is decreased which gives the lipstick that flat and dry look causing it to be matte.  The oil is what keeps your lips moisturized, so if the oil is decreased in the product it leaves our lips less moisturized and can cause the lips to be chapped, dry and many times sore due to cracking.

Its important to take care of your lips if you are an avid user of matte lipstick (ME!!!).  Since matte lipstick can leave your lips dry and cracked, moisturizing and exfoliating your lips regularly is vital.  When I use matte lipstick, there are three things that I make sure i do just about every night.

  1. Remove my lipstick with Micellar Water (some matte lip products are a bit harder to remove because of the lack of oil)
  2. Exfoliate my lips using a homemade mixture of honey and coconut palm sugar to remove the dry layer of skin on my lips (regular sugar is fine)
  3. Moisturize my lips using medicated lip balm or tea tree oil

Keeping this regimen has allowed my lips to stay soft and moisturized, but the moment I forget to do my routine, my lips go right back to feeling like sand paper!

Fortunately there are many matte lipstick collections that do not cause dry and chapped lips. These product have a bit more oil in them, allowing lips to maintain moisture  Here are a few that I like:

Remember, men don’t want to kiss a woman with sand paper lips…  So ladies, take care of whats under your lipstick!!!  What are some ways your keep your lips from feeling the effects of matte lipstick?

The Truth About Beauty Sleep

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  One major key in skin care and getting rid of puffy eyes is getting the right amount of sleep.  When we sleep, its like our body is pressing the reset button.  In order for your body to properly reset itself, its recommended that we get between 7 and 9 hours of sleep each night…  Seems impossible, especially if you lead a busy lifestyle like me.  Unfortunately, getting less than the suggested amount of sleep can take a toll on your appearance. Now, you can understand why its referred to as “beauty sleep”

There are many benefits to getting beauty rest:

  • Skin Renewal – Sleep gives our skin cells time to renew.  Every night when we are asleep, our  cells renew and rebuild.  Have you ever noticed how overnight pimples tend to come to a head?  This is due to cell renewal which allows our skin to push out toxins and assists with maintaining a clear complexion
  • Complexion – Sleep allows the body to boost blood flow.  This allows the skin to obtain a healthy glow.  The less sleep we get, the more likely we are to experience dull and lifeless skin
  • Healthier hair – Speaking of blood flow, it also plays a vital role in our hair. When we haven’t had enough sleep, our blood flow decreases. Hair obtains vitamins, minerals and nutrients from blood flow.  It’s almost like food for our hair.  The less food our hair gets, it is more likely to weaken making it extremely difficult for it to grow
  • Bright Eyes – Dull and puffy eyes can be attributed to many things, lack of sleep is one of them.  It’s pretty obvious that sleep allows our eyes to rest.  We are constantly blinking and straining our eyes, so it’s no wonder that they become puffy due to lack of rest.  It is also important to stay hydrated and sleep with an extra pillow for elevation which assists with reducing swelling.

Beauty sleep isn’t just some urban myth passed on from generation to generation.  Sleep is really much needed and is vital in our appearance.  For me, when I don’t get enough sleep my skin suffers majorly. How does lack of sleep affect your appearance?

Until next time…

L’Oreal #Extraordinaryhair Review

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Even though I don’t have much hair on my head these days, I do take care of the few strands that I do have.  My scalp tends to be very dry so its important for me to wash and condition my hair almost daily to keep the dry and flaky skin at bay.

I was really excited to try out the Extraordinary Oil line from L’Oréal.  Especially because keeping my hair oiled has always been a huge struggle for me even when I did have longer hair.  I had the pleasure of trying out the Nourishing Shampoo, Nourishing Conditioner and Lustrous Oil serum (my favorite of the three).  This line is perfect for dry and lifeless hair.  While my hair is VERY dry, it does give life so don’t get it twisted!  The great thing about the Extraordinary Hair collection is that the products are all infused with a complex of coconut, argan, sunflower, chamomile, amla and soja! All essential in keeping ones hair nourished and oiled without weighing it down.

When it comes to my hair, I’m EXTREMELY picky about the shampoos and conditioners that I choose, mainly because I have natural hair (4c texture), and if you have natural hair you know that everything isn’t for everybody.

Due to my tightly coiled hair, it sometimes can be tough to find a shampoo that gets into the nitty gritty of my hair and leaves it feeling squeaky clean.  The Nourishing Shampoo did exactly that.  While washing my hair I was amazed at how the soap quickly lathered and removed the dirt.  It really only took one good shampoo to get my hair clean.  Once I finished, I could hear the squeaking (love that sound) as I towel dried it.

The conditioner was pretty great as well.  I mixed it with some avocado and sat with a makeshift show cap on my head to let the conditioner penetrate deep into the roots of my hair.  Upon rinsing it, my hair was super soft and my itty bitty curls looked more plump than usual.

My absolute favorite product from this line is the Lustrous Oil!  It’s soooooooooo thick and extremely effective on my hair.  Just a few pumps are good enough to keep my normally dry hair oiled through the whole day.   Unlike many other serums, this one didn’t weigh my hair down.  My curls were still plump and light and there was no left over sticky residue from the serum.

It typically takes three weeks to know whether or not a new product is working for you, but with this collection, I knew within a few short days that this product was perfect for me.  And now that I have gone back to my Amber Rose cut, I’m still in love with the products for keeping my scalp clean and free from flakes and dryness!  Dear L’Oréal you get two thumbs up from this Product Junkie!!!

(I received this product free from L’Oréal for testing purposes.)

 

Perking Up My Piggy Bank… One Survey at a Time!

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In January I started the Broke on Purpose Challenge with lifestyle blogger @being_melody. I set a goal of eliminating $11,201 of unnecessary debt. This amount does not include any student loans or my car loan.   Since January I’ve been able to eliminate about $3,500 of my debt reducing the left over amount to a little over $7,000. There really wasn’t much to reducing the debt. I simply cut back on things that I didn’t need like:

  • Artificial nail services
  • Tea from Starbucks
  • Food delivery services (Home Chef, Blue Apron etc)
  • Eating out
  • Monthly subscriptions (Ipsy, Boxycharm, Shoedazzle etc)
  • Enhancing my wardrobe

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One major key to me being able to pay off my debt has been taking consumer surveys on the Opinion Outpost website.   Opinion Outpost is a consumer survey site where they pay their users to complete surveys on different products, services. Each survey is worth a specific amount of points starting from 5 points and going as high as 40 points (sometimes higher than that). It can take anywhere between 1 minute and an hour to complete a survey. Whenever I am home sitting in front of the TV I’ll pull my laptop out and take surveys until I either get tired or I run out of surveys to take. On average I can make between $40 and $50 a week just by completing consumer surveys and each time I cash out my survey points, I head straight to my debt calculator to see which bill I can pay on to reduce my debt!

How to Get Started

To get started, all you have to do is set up an account by creating a username and password. Once your account has been created, you must setup a profile so that surveys can start being sent to you. Each time a survey becomes available an email alert will be sent to you notifying you have a survey waiting; each email will include the point value of the survey as well as the approximate time it will take to complete the survey.   There are times when you may not qualify to complete the survey after answering the preliminary questions, but don’t worry, there will be plenty of other opportunities to earn points.

Survey Topics

The subject of the surveys vary, I’ve taken surveys that require me to test products like soaps, lipstick, paper towels and different food products. I’ve also taken surveys on medical studies, new television shows and on other services like electric bills and airline flights.

 Survey Rewards

There are many incentives to taking surveys with Opinion Outpost. As stated before, each survey is worth a certain amount of points. Once a user earns at least 30 points they can redeem their points for things like: Amazon gift cards, Red Cross donations, Frequent Flyer Miles and of course cash! (requires a 100 point minimum). Sometimes, there are even opportunities to make more money outside of Opinion Outpost. For example, in December, I had to record all of the beverages I drank for one week. After completing the beverage log I received a $50 Visa gift card. There have also been times where I have received other incentives like Amazon gift cards, free oil changes and money transferred to my PayPal account.

There are numerous consumer survey sites out there, Opinion Outpost just happens to be my favorite. Setup your profile and see how much you can earn each week. Good Luck!!!

Each month, I’ll be giving an update on my goal of becoming debt free by the end of this year and giving different tips on how you too can pay down your debt!!!   Follow @brokeonpurpose on Instagram for more information and inspiration on becoming debt free!!!

 

PiperWai

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I love my boss, she’s a fellow product junkie so she’s always hipping me to the new new and telling me what I should and should not buy.  A few months ago we were having our daily girl talk and she told me about an episode of Shark Tank that featured a natural deodorant called PiperWai  As soon as she told me about it I rolled my eyes because I have tried many many many different natural deodorants and NONE of them have worked.  I mean none of them have even worked for an hour.  Each time I have tried a  natural deodorant I’ve been left feeling extremely sweaty and smelling like…. well a dead skunk on a 100 degree day… NO BUENO.  Even after my boss told me about how the creators of PiperWai swore by their product I still didn’t believe her because all companies feel that their product is the absolute best.  A few months after she told me about it I developed a huge lump under my arm from the deodorant I used which ended up causing me to have a many other health issues, so I finally decided to try PiperWait and baybeeeeeee If this thang ain’t the TRUTH!!!

I did a little research on the product and saw that it was made from natural ingredients like cocoa butter, coconut oil, and vitamin E oil. Still a bit leery, I purchased the product in January but due to the popularity of their Shark Tank episode there was a 5 to 6 week wait for the product to be shipped.  I decided to order two of jars because if the product really worked I didn’t want to have to wait 5 to 6 weeks to have more delivered.  As soon as I got the alert that my package had been delivered I could not get to my mailbox fast enough.  I tried it for the first time and was almost immediately in love.  When you open the jar it looks a lot like play-dough; it’s soft and extremely smooth, the texture is kind of hard to explain.  To use it, you just take a small pea size pinch of the putty like substance and rub it under your arm.  The tiny pinch is just enough to cover your entire under arm area (one pinch for each arm).piper-wai

The whole entire first day I used PiperWai I kept smelling my arms to see if the deodorant was actually working.  I went a whole 12 hours and did not sweat nor did I have any type of armpit odor!  The fact that I had no odor at all was such a big deal to me.  This is because PiperWai contains ingredients that won’t allow bacteria to grow and thrive, which leads to fresh pits.  In my research on PiperWai, I learned that when we sweat under our arms it does not have an odor.  However, once bacteria reaches the sweat it causes that terrible foul odor like raw onions mixed with crushed garlic.  I also learned that the magnesium in PiperWai allows your body to block the offensiveness of sweat – isn’t science freaking amazing???

One of the things I love most about this product is that it does not clog your apocrine sweat glands like other antiperspirants.  Clogged apocrine glands can lead to large lumps forming under your arms which can be extremely painful and cause other health issues like various infections.  PiperWait is great for sensitive skin, it won’t cause any break outs or irritation to the skin. 

One jar of PiperWai is only $11.99 plus S&H.  $11.99 may seem a bit pricey but honestly its totally worth it because it will last for months! Right now there is a 2-4 week back order on it but its really worth the wait.  Try PiperWai today and tell me what you think!!!

 

Uninvited Guests…. Cold Sores!!!

I’ve had to stop my 30 shades of lipstick challenge because I’ve had a visitor for the last few days. An uninvited visitor known as… A COLD SORE!!! Ever since I was 7 years old I’ve suffered from Cold Sores. When I was a kid they would always pop up right in the corner of my mouth at the same time every single year. Sometimes they would be so painful I wouldn’t be able to even open my mouth wide enough to talk. As an adult, they pop up multiple times a year and now, I’ve been blessed with three of these mutinous craters on my lip.   I always know when one is about to pop up because my lips begin to tingle, they become extremely dry and sometimes they get numb.

Cold Sores, also known as Fever Blisters or Herpes Simplex Virus-1 (HSV-1) can be caused when the Herpes virus enters the body through a break in the skin. This could be a small cut or slight abrasion. Once this occurs, HSV-1 never leaves the body it just lies dormant until activated again.

How are they caused?

Cold Sore outbreaks can be triggered by many things, including: stress, menstruation, bad hygiene, menstruation, fever, dehydration, change in diet and even local skin trauma.   For me, I get Cold Sores when I’m dehydrated and recently due to a severe amount of stress I’ve been blessed with three of these lepers!

Symptoms

For me, my symptoms are always the same. My lips are extremely dry and they tingle or get numb. But, there are a few other signs and symptoms that give the signal that a Cold Sore is about to make its way to your mouth:

  • Sore Lip
  • Ulcers
  • Redness
  • Burning Sensation
  • Rashes
  • Swollen Lips

Treatment

People often laugh at me when I tell them how I get rid of my Cold Sores. I really have a strong distain for taking medicine so I try to search for remedies that can be a quick cure for these Cold Sores. Here are a few of my favorite remedies:

  1. Nail polish remover- I know it sounds unsafe but the chemicals in nail polish remover help speed up the healing process of Cold Sores.   Simply dip a cotton swab in your nail polish remover and hold it on the sore for 10 minutes. Then fill a sandwich bag with ice and place it on your lip (be sure to put a paper towel between your mouth and the bag so that the sore stays dry) within 24 hours the sore should enter the yellow scabby phase and will be completely healed within 3 days.
  2. Lysine – Eat foods that are high in lysine like yogurt, cheese, grains and meats. Lysine is an amino acid that can assist with ridding the body of different ailments and impurities.
  3. Drink plenty of water – Cold Sores germs love to play around in dry and warm environments. Drink plenty of water to keep the area cold and moist so that the blisters are forced to dry out and heal.
  4. Anti-inflammatory – Taking medicines like Ibuprofen can assist with treating the swelling
  5. Moisture – Keep lips moisturized as much as possible with topical ointments and balms like Blistex, Carmex, Abreva and my favorite ointment – Bag Balm!

 

More dos and don’ts of treating and preventing Cold Sores can be found on Experience Project

Honestly, I really don’t know of any ways to prevent Cold Sore outbreaks other than keeping your hands clean, limiting stress and keeping lips moisturized. I feel like cold sores are like a pesky sibling, just waiting for the perfect opportunity to attempt to ruin your life!

What cold sore remedies have you tried???

My Back is Aching My Bra Too Tight!

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Ya’ll know I looooooooove YouTube. I get excited when any of my favorite subscribers post a new vlog or tutorial (see my favorite YouTubers here).   Recently Nitraa B did a video titled “All about Bras”). Definitely a must see for all women! She talked about caring for your bras, where to buy them, how to get measured and other topics related to bras.   Before watching the video I honestly thought Ummm I’ve been wearing a bra since I was 9 I’m pretty sure I know everything I need to know about them.” WRONG!!! Because I would soon find out that I along with 80% of the women in the US have been wearing the wrong size bra!

A few weeks ago at the suggestion of my mother and right after watching Nitraa B’s video, I went to get my bra size measured. For years I automatically assumed I was a 36 C. After going to my local Lane Bryant, I discovered that I couldn’t have been more wrong about my bra size. Boy I was off by quite a bit, because after working with the sales associate I found out that my size was…. WAIT FOR IT… A 42 DDD. Yep I had been wearing the wrong bra size for many many years.

After buying two VERY expensive bras my life changed.   My back pains that I was experiencing stopped, I don’t have any shoulder pain and my bras covered up my fat rolls in the back (just keeping it 100 with y’all) which made my clothes look a lot better.  I currently take a class that forces me to really look at how I present myself, and believe it or not under garments like bras and panties even came up in a class discussion.  As women, it is extremely important that we take time to educate ourselves on our clothing whether its visible or not. Studies show that women that wear the wrong bra can subject themselves to experiencing many health issues such as: deformed breast shape, bad posture, scars on the skin, blocked lymph nodes  and many other issues.

I highly suggest that each of you take the time to get fitted for the right bra. Your breast size is probably a lot bigger than what you actually think they are. Just look at what happened to me, I was off by 2 cup sizes and let’s not get started on how off I was with the band size SMH!  Getting fitted not only made me look better, but it also made me feel better about myself.

While bras are definitely an investment, I understand that for some, spending $80 on a bra is just not feasible , so here are a few helpful tips for after you get measured:

  • Don’t feel obligated to buy a bra from the same place you get measured, take your measurements to another store that is in your price range
  • Keep an eye out for sales, stores like Victoria’s Secret and Fredericks of Hollywood always have some kind of deal going on. February is always a good time to buy bras because of Valentines Day! Mark your calendar for semi annual sales at these stores as well
  • These days, there are all kinds of discount sites that offer inexpensive intimate apparel. Off Duty Intimates is an excellent site that offers bras that start at just $4.99 and they beyond a D cup!
  • Check out Groupon and No More Rack, you will certainly be surprised at what you find here

Oh, and I also understand how intimidating it can be to show your body to a complete stranger, so if you are uncomfortable with getting measured by a professional you can do it yourself using these instructions from Real Simple

Have you gotten measured and found out you were wearing the wrong size?  I’d love to hear about your experience!