Valentine’s Day Survival Guide 2018

Valentine’s Day Survival Guide 2018

Well mes chéries, we are a week away from ever loved and ever dreaded Valentine’s Day. In my Valentine’s Day Survival Guide post last year, I chatted with you all briefly about my thoughts on this holiday and had some fun with my Valentine’s Day lookbook.

This year’s Valentine’s Day Survival Guide contains TWO sections:

  1. B&R’s very first His & Hers OOTD (or I guess OOTN in this case)
  2. Surviving the dating world in 2018

I want to give a huge shoutout to one of my best friends, Ryan, for gracing the blog with his presence. 😂 Thank you for playing “Instagram BF” for a day to help me put together our His & Her looks as well as my previous all-black Winter Lookbook. (By the way ladies, he’s single 😉 so hit him up! )

Without further ado, let’s first take a look at what we each picked for our ideal Valentine’s Day date night before heading into some deeper thoughts… ❤

HIS OOTD

Since Ryan is the guest star today, let’s start with his picks first. Since the typical date night usually consists of dinner and some sort of fun or romantic activity afterwards, he opted for something that is chic and polished but not too dressy or casual. This way, his outfit is versatile enough for wherever the night takes him.

There are multiple elements I love in this look. First, there are a series of colors here: white, gray, black, navy, and maroon. The colors are all rather cool-toned, but there is a slight warm undertone in the sweater and shoes that warm up and romanticize the maroon and the entire look.

Next, each piece in the outfit is subtly detailed. The sweater is knit which provides texture while the jacket is a dark marled gray which provides dimension. The gray on the striped scarf match the gray of the jacket, which is crucial when mixing the same shades. The pants and shoes are both solid canvases which help balance all the other textures out.

Lastly, I love that the sweater matches the shoes. Originally, we had styled this look with his Frank & Oak leather sneakers, but the color ended up clashing. While this outfit would look even more solid if he had those shoes in white, any white shoe helps tie the highlights (or brighter color) of the outfit together. Sometimes when there is just one highlight color in a look, it becomes the center of attention. In this case, having both the highlight color on the top and bottom half helps create a sense of balance and a whole look, allowing the eye to take a step back and appreciate the entire outfit rather than over focusing on just one part of it.

Sweater: H&M
Pants: Nordstrom (Nordstrom brand)
Jacket: Zara
Shoes: Vans
Scarf: Kenneth Cole

 

HER OOTD

For my outfit, I chose a look that was sweet and feminine, not too dressy or casual, and can hide the gut I would most definitely get from dinner. 😂 I paired my high waisted faux leather skirt (which you saw in my previous blog post) with a cropped but chunky open-knit sweater and my over-the-knee heeled boots. To play off Valentine’s Day red and pink colors and match the gray tones of Ryan’s outfit, I chose my dark gray trench-styled coat.

I was honestly between numerous outfits for this year’s Valentine’s Day OOTD, but settled on this one for two main reasons: its versatility and comfort. This outfit is easy to dress up or down depending on the night’s festivities and venues. The chunky sweater combined with the high-waisted skirt create a slimmer waist which I highly appreciate when eating is involved. The coziness of the outfit also makes me a bit more relaxed which everyone can appreciate on a romance-pressured date night. As usual, the heeled boot adds a little boost to help elevate the outfit.

I will be honest and admit my outfit does not match as well as Ryan’s does, but I did want to pair it with the gray coat soften the contrast between the black in my oufit and the very light pink highlight.

Sweater: & Other Stories
Skirt: Zara
Boots: Steve Madden
Coat: Michael Kors


Dating in 2018

The last time we talked about love was in this post mid-October.

Mid. October.

That felt like a year ago to me. I’m still putting myself as my priority and spoiling myself rotten, but I’ve started warming back up to the thought of romance and relationships again. Unfortunately, taking a few years off of love almost made me forget that dating in 2018 is entirely a new ball game. You have dating apps, social media, and this ridiculous millennial mentality that there is “always something better” out there.

For those of you who are here because you want the dirty details of my love life, you’re out of luck! As open as I am on the blog and social media, the one thing I do my best to keep offline is my personal life. Furthermore, someone recently decided to publicize my personal life, causing a chain of unnecessary drama and gossip to go around a setting where no one’s personal life should have been exposed and discussed at all. Maybe I’m the only one who has put high school so far in the past that I forgot the 21st Century Devil pays rent in GroupMe. I had absolutely zero tolerance for it, and as a result I’m choosing to keep my love life as private as possible from this point forward.

This entire noisy situation and a some other events that have occurred to myself or a few of my friends taught me a few lessons in surviving the dating world these days. They are as follows:

1. There are only two people in any relationship.

No matter what kind of relationship we’re talking about, whether it’s purely friendship or full-blown marriage, there should only be two people involved in it. To clarify, there is nothing wrong with getting advice from friends and family or sharing tidbits of your happiness with them. But at some point, there is a line between sharing and involving others into your personal relationships.

Everybody loves to talk. Not everyone’s opinions are relevant or important. Figure out what is valuable advice or input and what is just plain noise. Differentiate between the two and leave the rest out of it. You know yourself and your relationship with this person best. Don’t let anyone define the relationship but you and the other person involved.

2. Leave social media out of it.

On the point of social media. It’s always cute to share your happiness and love on Instagram, Snapchat, Facebook, Twitter, and so forth. But do NOT bring social media INTO your relationship, especially if you are just starting to get see each other!

When I see girls getting upset because the guy they like liked a photo on Instagram of a pretty girl or was active on Facebook messenger and viewed her Snapchat story but didn’t answer her text right away (GASP! God forbid!!!), I’m always bewildered as to why they enjoy breeding personal insecurities. I also never understood why they choose to hold a grudge to the guy about whatever trivial social media thing upset them, not communicate how they feel, and expect them to know what they did was wrong. Men aren’t us, my loves. They don’t know the complexities of a female mind. Don’t expect them to be mind readers!

Oh and for the love of God: if you’re seeing someone (no matter how seriously or casually) or even just going on a first date (especially one that did not source from a dating app), be respectful of their time and attention. Close out your dating apps and maybe even remove it from the first home screen of your phone just for the duration of the date. The last thing girls want to see is you opening your phone to check a message only to see that in the pile of apps you had open right before the date are Tinder, Bumble, and Hinge… You are asking for a nice load of passive aggressiveness to come your way.

And yes. Girls notice this crap. Sadly.

3. Take the time to actually get to know someone.

I don’t understand why everyone is obsessed with “doing better.” The grass is not always greener on the other side. Sometimes it is, but most of the time it’s just some really pretty turf. That’s why I just looove when I share something about whoever I’m seeing with a friend and they give me the whole “Oh honey, HIM? You can do better…” speech after just a few short descriptions. Every time they do that, I just want to be like “And you know this how?”

People come into your lives for a reason. Take the time to actually get to know someone beneath the surface and superficial reputations, beneath what you know about their pasts, and beneath the million opinions other people think of them. Who are they around you? How do they treat you? What does their friendship give you? Once you give that person a fair chance to share who they are with you, then can you make an honest decision about where to take the relationship.

I hope these three small tips help you in life and love this season. Enjoy the little things, the crush period, the butterflies. Don’t let the past obstruct your present or your future. Focus on what’s right in front of you in the moment. Take things day by day and don’t rush a good thing. Most importantly, don’t forget that as long as you’re genuinely happy, nothing else matters.

Happy (early) Valentine’s Day, mes chéries. Bisou, bisou…

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Erica Huang

Based in New York City, Erica Huang is the creator and voice behind Bouge & Rouge. This blog is a playground of her thoughts where she invites you to join her on her journey through her 20s. Erica shares her lifestyle, fashion and beauty tips, adventures, and personal thoughts with the goal of inspiring others to always persevere and be unapologetically yourself.

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