- Messy Chignon Hair Tutorial -


In honor of awards season, I wanted to share with you one of my favorite red carpet hairstyles, the classic chignon. I love this timeless style and find that it’s appropriate for many occasions. We’ve seen this style polished to perfection, but I wanted to share my take on a slightly messier version  that I find chic and “effortless”. It’s actually pretty easy too!

Thanks for reading, and here’s to fabulous looking hair! xx

Teacher Diva Hair Tutorial_-5

Products Used:

Pro Beauty Tools: 1 ¼” Professional Gold Curling Iron

Oribe: Superfine Strong Hairspray

Nexxus: Promend Heat Protectant


I find that day old hair works best for this updo, it gives the hair a little extra grit and volume when worn up. Start by throwing in a few curls with a 1 ¼” Professional Curling Iron. This curling iron is my favorite because I love the size (perfect for those loose curls) and it has a variety of heat settings, making it ideal for all hair types. The barrel is 24k gold plated, and the high heat of the curling iron gives me 24 hour, long lasting curls, which is perfect for a long night out. I am very picky when it comes to my hair appliances, and this one works great (and it’s under $30)!

Section hair into 2 ½ inch sections and apply this heat protecting spray. This will help keep moisture in the hair while using appliances like a blowdryer, curling iron or flat iron. Take each hair section & curl with a 1 ¼ inch barrel curling iron

Heat Protecting Spray

curing iron


Back comb or lightly tease each section at the root. Mist hair with a firm hold hair spray. I love the Superfine Mist by Oribe.  After back combing & spraying, gently smooth any flyaways, and then finger comb the sections together.

teasing comb


Gather the hair and use an elastic to pull your hair into a ponytail. You will wrap the elastic around your hair a few times but do not pull the hair through like a normal pony tail. You will want to create a small bun, with then ends of your hair not pulled completely through. Gently lift hair at the crown of your head to add extra volume.


messy bun


Take the ends that are sticking out and divide them into two sections. Wrap one side around the top of your bun, covering the elastic. Secure with a bobby pin or two. Don’t worry if your layers are starting to stick out, you can tweak it at the end or leave it if your prefer a messier style to your updo. Repeat with the second section.

updo hairtutorial

messy bun tutorial


Use bobby pins to pin any hair that has fallen out of the bun. I just use a few, as I like mine to look a little “undone”. I like to go through one more time and gently lift the hair at the crown to add some extra volume. Finish with your favorite hairspray and you are all set!

chignon hair tutorial

low bun

oribe hair spray

chignon bun tutorial

 Low Bun Tutorial

OUTFIT DETAILS:  WHBM Black Duster Cardigan  (also seen here // fit: tts) | similar Striped Shirt | Baublebar Statement Earrings (surprisingly these weren’t that heavy!) c/o | David Qumran Crossover Ring | Michele Deco II Watch c/o | Kate Spade Gold Bangle | Lipliner: “Honey(bun)”  | Lipstick: “#600 Pow!” (obsessed with this duo…it has some serious staying power!)


Please feel free to reach out with questions or comments below!

Images by: Mary Summers 

This post is in collaboration with Pro Beauty Tools. All opinions and selections are my own.

- The Classic Trench Coat: Under $100 -

Black Skinny Jeans

Now that Spring is only a few weeks away, I am starting to pull out some of my favorite transitional pieces. A staple I always turn to each Spring is my trusted trench coat.

This versatile piece, is easily one of my favorite items because it can be worn with countless items I already own in my closet. Whether it’s paired with an evening look or kept casual with jeans and flats, it’s a great way to complete your look. I love this Black and Tan Trench Coat from Charming Charlie (under $75).

Personally, my favorite way to style a trench is with a striped tee shirt and black jeans. I threw on these black pumps, but you could easily pair with your favorite flats to make this work friendly. Speaking of work, how amazing is this Faux Leather Tote? It’s actually reversible (amazing) and I love the size. It would be perfect for a small laptop, files, or anything else you may need to take with you while at work.

Thank you for reading and happy Friday! xx

Black Shopper Tote

Gold Rings

Black Tote

Trench Coat Outfit

Striped Top Outfit

OUTFIT DETAILS: Black & Tan Trench Coat (FIT: tts, I am wearing a small) | Black Faux Leather Tote Round Sunglasses (the perfect dupe for the prada sunglasses!) | Gold Mesh Ring (available in select Charming Charlie stores) X Midi Ring Gold Ring Set (these are perfect for stacking or wearing solo) c/o Charming Charlie | Black Jeans (FIT: tts) Striped Top (The one pictured is old, but I linked a similar style that I own. Size up, it runs a little small in the arms) | Black Pumps (FIT: tts) | Lipstick: “Nice to Meet You”


This post is in partnership with Charming Charlie. All selections and opinions are my own! 

- The Little Black Dress -

Black Dress

They say every girl should own a little black dress. Something to have on hand for any occasion and versatile enough to wear with any accessory. While I couldn’t agree more, I also love the idea of a simple, cotton black dress for something a little more casual.

This black shift dress is just what I was looking for to wear as we transition into Spring. I love the long sleeves and ruffle detailing on the hem. Not to mention, it’s so soft and doesn’t wrinkle! I plan to wear this dress with heels or these lace up sandals as it gets warmer. This is the perfect solution for those days where you just don’t feel like taking the time to plan out your outfit. I love it!

Thanks for reading! xx

Black Dress

lace up shoes

baublebar necklace

Little black dress

lace up heels


OUTFIT DETAILS: Matty M Black Tunic Dress (FIT: Runs big, size down!) | Steve Madden Lace Up Heels on sale! (more sizes here) | Celine Box Bag (similar budget friendly version) | Baublebar Bee Necklace | Prada Sunglasses | Michele Deco II Watch c/o | Brandy Pham Double Cylinder Cuff c/o | David Yurman Chain Bracelet 


images by Mary Summers

- Free People Floral Tunic -

Free People Blouse

This past week the weather has been unreal in Dallas. 65 Degrees, sunny…no complaints here! I was excited to bring out some of my Spring and Summer tops, including this Floral Tunic ( be sure to read about sizing at the bottom).

Long, flowy tops are all I live in during the Spring.  This one is unique with the cut out details on the back. I wasn’t sure how I would feel about the open back, but I actually love the detailing (especially because you can still wear a regular bra). This top is so easy to wear, and definietly something that will get a lot of play in my closet this Spring.

Free People Blouse

timex leather watch

Free People Tunic

Pigalle Pumps

baublebar necklace

Floral Blouse

OUTFIT DETAILS: Free People Floral Tunic (Ok- this is actually a dress, but a very short dress. If you are petite, this would be an adorable dress on you, but for me at 5’6 it was pretty short. I sized down to an XS and found that it makes for the perfect tunic. I would recommend sizing down if you want to wear this as a top) | Current Elliot Skinny Ankle Jeans (FIT: tts) | Louboutin Pigalle Pumps (borrowed from Mary, you know she’s a good friend and photographer when she lends you her Loubs for a shoot when you forget your shoes!) I usually wear this budget friendly version of Nude Pumps | Prada Brown Leather Satchel (similar version here) | Timex Greenwich Watch (I love the brown leather strap!) c/o | Baublebar Tassel Y Necklace | Brandy Pham Double Cylinder Bracelet c/o | David Yuman Criss Cross Ring 


images by Mary Summers

- 5 Essential Pieces Every Girl Should Own -

Utility Jacket Outfit

When it comes to fashion, we’ve seen trends come and go, but the basics always remain the frontrunners in our closets. While, trends can be fun and exciting, a closet needs balance. For me, basics are those items that never go out of style. The pieces you can mix and match or throw on when in a time crunch. I’ve narrowed it down to 5 essentials that every girl should own…or eventually own! Just click the arrows to shop my favorites as all price points.

Comment below and let me know what you guys think.



A utility jacket like this will go far in your wardrobe. I’ve worn mine layered with long sleeve or short sleeve tops. It’s truly the perfect year round staple!


A striped shirt should be one of the most versatile pieces in your wardrobe. You can wear them with other patterns and prints and layer with your favorite jackets and cardigans.


I’ve had this scarf for two years and it is still a staple in my fall & winter wardrobe. I love a chunky knit scarf! 


Every girl needs a leather clutch you can use for any occasion. I love the size and color of the Saint Germain Leather Clutch. It’s structured, yet still feminine. This is definitely a classic bag that can be used year round.


Finding the perfect jeans can be hard. Trust me, I know! I finally found my favorite pair of skinny jeans (ever) and I wish I could wear them every single day. I also have this pair of dark skinny jeans, which also fit pretty well. You can see how I styled these here and here


- The Packing List | Mexico -

Packing for Mexico

By now I’m sure we all can agree this cold weather has got to go. Being in Dallas we haven’t experienced it quite like other areas, but I sure do miss patio weather. I can’t help but dream of a sitting on a beach in Mexico!

In effort to make winter more bearable, Austin and I decided to plan a little “Winter Escape” in February. I’m heading to Cabo to work on a project for The Teacher Diva, but we decided to extend the trip a couple days and make a little getaway out of it.

Just as I’ve been counting down the days until this little trip, I’ve also been planning out my packing list. The thing I love about traveling to the beach is that you really don’t need much. I try to keep my packing limited to these essentials:



What is a trip to the beach without fabulous (and affordable) swimwear? I am in love with these suits from Modcloth. I can’t get over this Pastel One-Piece Swimsuit. The colors are so beautiful and I love the way it fits (I am always a fan of a cute one-piece)! I also found this high-wasted Two-Piece that will look great with my fringed and lace coverup. Speaking of coverups, I have been looking for a white kimono style coverup and this one takes the cake. I love the style, fit and most of all the price. I’ve learned to never pass on a good cover up. After all, it’s what you will be wearing around the resort or beach most of the day, so why not feel confident?

one piece swimsuit

pink swimsuit

modcloth swimwear


These cat eye sunglasses are perfect for a day by the beach. I love any pair by Quay, and these were no exception.  If you like to wear a sun hat, I suggest this black and white straw hat. Not only is it glamorous, but it’s protects your face and shoulders from getting too much sun. Bonus- it folds up nice in your suitcase and does not wrinkle!

quay sunglasses

sun hat


When I think of the beach, the first thing that comes to my mind is flip flops and bikinis. However, I love a good espadrille. These Magenta Suede Espadrilles are probably the most comfortable shoes I’ve worn (plus the color is simply amazing). I thought it would fit like a traditional espadrille (hard with no cushion), but that was not the case. These are padded and  are very soft inside. These will be perfect to wear at the airport and to wear around town.

As far as sandals go, the “strappier” the better, in my book. I just added these cognac leather sandals to my cart!

 pink espadrilles


I always like to bring a few dresses and casual tops on my trips. I try to stick with versatile options that I can mix and match. This denim dress is adorable and I can’t wait to wear it throughout spring and summer. I also love a good striped tee. This striped flowy top is perfection and so easy to travel with. It’s very soft and long enough to wear over your favorite skinny jeans.

For dinner one night, I plan to wear this geometric maxi dress (how pretty is that bow in the back?) with these black wedges.

packing list


I love organizing my carry on. Oddly enough it brings me great joy to have a neat purse and carryon bag (anyone else?). This St. Germain Clutch is perfect to store my favorite on-the-go accessories (and it doubles as a gorgeous clutch).

I highly recommend this back up battery. I posted about this little guy before, but it has been worth every penny. I use this on every trip and can’t believe how well it’s held up. This is a must, must, must!

When I’m on the plane, I love to listen to music and write in a travel journal. I usually write down highlight from our trip, our favorite restaurants, and must-do’s in the city (this is a great way for me to remember when it comes time to doing a formal review on here).

These navy headphones have been amazing to travel with. They actually fold up making it easy for packing purposes. I have a love hate with headphones like these because usually I find that they hurt my ears or cause me to get headaches, these are not the case. They are very comfortable and easy to adjust. I will not leave for a trip without these!

My passport is an obvious one,  but wanted to include details on my monogrammed passport case.

carry on essentials

leather clutch


Now, as much I love my products, the beach isn’t the place to wear a full face of makeup or rock a glamorous blowout. But it doesn’t mean you can’t wear a little color!


I love this Tinted Sunscreen with SPF 50I purchased this last summer before our trips and have been using the product any time I’m going to be in the sun for a while or just want a hint of color. The nice thing about this cream, is you can build your coverage. If you want something a little heavier, simply add another layer after you let the first layer set.

Gwen Stefani UD Palette

I just got my hands on the UD X Gwen Stefani Blush Palette and I am obsessed. If you have snapchat, head over to my account (the teacher diva) today because I will be showing you how I wear this palette. Palettes are ideal for traveling, especially if you find one with versatile colors. This blush palette is perfect for contour, color and highlight. It’s another must! I’m also trying her new Brow Box. I am partial to my Brow Power Pencil, but I do love that this kit has two universal colors, wax (to help the brows stay in place) and it comes with mini tweezers and two slanted brushes. I’m such a sucker for cute packaging. I will show you how to use this one on snapchat today as well!

beauty buys

After I am in the sun and water, my skin always feels dry. I like to pack a good face moisturizer, eye cream and lip balm any time I travel. I can’t stand for my skin to feel tight and dry. The Bare Haven Essential Moisturizing Soft Cream is the perfect solution to dry skin. I also decided to splurge and try the La Mer Illuminating Eye Gel. I’ve read plenty of reviews, but wasn’t quite sure it lived up to the hype. I’ve used it for about 3 weeks now and I’ve noticed my eyes do not appear as puffy, nor do they look “tired”. I love the cooling sensation when I apply. It really does make a difference.

For my lips, I always look for something with SPF. Fresh Sugar Lip Balm is my go-to! I have this in two other colors as well, but I love this classic one.

Shine Spray

Let’s talk about hair. If you color your hair (guilty!) you know how bad the sun and chlorine can be for your color. The Alterna Rapid Repair Spray (get 20% off with code MAX20) is a must must for all you girls with color treated hair or damaged hair. Not only does this mist add a hint of shine, but it also has UV blockers to help keep the sun from damaging your hair and the color. As I’ve mentioned before, I love anything that can be used on wet or dry hair. If only I could find this in a travel size, I would honestly carry it in my purse. It’s that good!

packing for mexico

What are your travel must haves? I am always looking to try new things. Thanks for reading! xx

Resort Favorites from ModCloth

This post was in partnership with ModCloth. All opinions and selections are my own!

- Plaid Details -

black cape

It’s no secret, I have been loving capes this season. You’ve seen me wear them many times on the blog (here and here are a few of my favorites), but it just goes to show how versatile this layering piece can be. I love to layer capes with chunky sweater, tunics or in this case, a simple white button down shirt.

Did I mention this cape is actually reversible? That’s right, you can choose to wear the plaid side or keep it all black. This was such a great find for only $60. I found a ton of other great options linked below all under $100.

Thanks for stopping by and thank you so much for the sweet comments and emails about our home tour! You guys are truly the best. xx

over the knee boots

black hat

Cape outfit

celine bag

wool hat

black leggings outfit

black and white outfit

OUTFIT DETAILS: Topshop Reversible Cape | White Button Down Tunic | Wool Hat (old) Identical version here and here | SPANX Black Ponte Leggings (similar black leggings under $50) | Sam Edelman Over The Knee Boots ( I also love this pair of Steve Madden Over The Knee Boots) | Celine Luggage Tote (similar tote under $300) | Michele Deco II (18 mm strap) c/o | David Yurman Crossover Ring 


images by: mary summers

- Home Sweet Home -

Gallery Wall Art

Today, I’m excited to share a project that Austin and I have been working very hard on for the past several months.

Austin and I purchased our first home two and a half years ago. After months of looking, we finally found one we fell in love with. Coming from a tiny 700 square foot apartment, we felt a bit overwhelmed after realizing we had to fill it with something besides a hand-me-down bed and a Craigslist couch.  So after several months of planning, hard work, and saving, Austin and I finally feel cozy at home. And we are so excited to share it with all of you! We are very pleased with how everything turned out and we couldn’t have done it without the help of our dear friend and designer, Jessie Russell.

And speaking of Jessie, let me just brag on her for a second. I am sometimes a pretty impatient person with long-term projects.  I am known to start ten different project and never finish any of them…well I do, but in my own way. And I can never visualize the big picture when it comes to interiors (as you may have heard me mention on here before). Those are pretty much the opposite qualities you need when trying to decorate a house. Jessie was a total lifesaver. She was the visionary for this whole project and I couldn’t have done it without her. If you’re like me, find a friend or a decorator that is good at that kind of stuff. It’s absolutely worth it.

So when we started thinking about our vision for our three-level town home, we knew we wanted it to be an inviting place for friends and family. We wanted a place where we could entertain, yet come home and relax. I wanted everything to be white & neutral balanced with bold statements like our bedroom wall, curtains, and printed wallpaper.

Home Office Decor

Tuscan Moroccan Rug // Desk // Chair 

Table Tray

 orange tray // blue & white jar found at hobby lobby // orange clove candle (smells so yummy!) // leopard print book 

Offiic Chairs

Office Bookshelf

This little bookshelf has to be my favorite Ikea purchase. We have another one in our living room as well! We decided to add an accent shelf with marble contact paper. I love how it turned out! My clothing rack is also another Ikea find.

Ikea Clothing Rack


pink planner c/o // zebra note pad // silver pen // fuchsia aviators // zebra tray // angelika” lipgloss // glasses // makeup case // gold stapler // gold scissors 

desk styling

candle // rose face mist // but first coffee print (custom, but she can make more!) // monogram business card holder // french bulldog notepad 

Entry Table

I wanted to keep our entry table very simple. A few tall lamps, scalloped mirror and small tray were just what it needed. We purchased most of these items at Home Goods and the baskets are actually planters from Ikea. I love to burn this candle when we have guests over. It smells so good and really fills up our house.

Kitchen Table

This light fixture is one of my favorite purchases for our home. We just Iove the way it turned out! We found our kitchen table at Crate and Barrel Outlet and our chairs are from Restoration Hardware. This Cow Art Print is also another one of my favorite pieces. I love the way it looks in our dining room!


What’s a home without great coffee? Austin and I love drinking coffee each morning, and having this Nespresso Vertuoline Evoluo Deluxe has made getting ready for work that much easier. It is so convenient and easy to use. We have become quite addicted to this little machine and find ourselves using it for both coffee and espresso. We also have the Nespresso Aerocino Plus Milk Frother and are testing our are barista skills with cappuccinos and lattes. We still have a way to go on the latte art, but we are getting close!

nespresso review

coffee table books

leopard pillows

coffee table // spike sea urchin // kate spade book // fashion book // matchstick holder // various knick-knacks found at Home Goods //  Side Chairs // Upholstered Chair is from Restoration Hardware

Navy Curtains

Diamond Shag Rug // Leopard Pillows // white faux fur pillows (24 X 24) // Navy Pillows and Grey and White Pillows are from Peacock Alley // Gold Lamps (we found those on major sale, here is a similar lamp) // Wall Art // frames are from Ikea // Velvet Curtains (color is Regal Blue // Size 124″)


ceramic french bulldog // faux fur stool Target // gold vases are from Z Gallerie // gold candle holders 

Shelf Decor

Ikea Book Shelf

Bar Cart

coffee table

floral wallpaper


Tray (found in store at Target) // Jewelry Box (local boutique) // The Best Part Print  // Jo Malone Perfume // Chanel Perfume // Chloe Perfume (my wedding day perfume!)

Navy Accent Wall

We had these Leopard Benches made last year, and I am so happy with how they turned out. Jen and her husband from Liven Up Design are the best! These were the perfect addition to our navy and white bedroom.

Bedroom Details


Sunglasses // Black Watch // Monogram Acrylic Jewelry Box

Leopard Print Stools

chanel flats

Similar Ballet Flats (under $80)

ikea nightstand

Peacock Alley Sheets

 Sheets (I love these crisp, cool sheets!) // Shams & Coverlet // Duvet Cover & Shams // Bedskirt c/o Peacock Alley

Leather Sofa

Brown Living Room

Rugs USA Muai Chunky Loop Rug c/o // Ikea side tables // Grey Chairs // Copper Side Table 

Cow Skull Living Room






Images by Mary Summers

- Skin Care in 3 Easy Steps -

skin care routine

When it comes to skin care, I like to stick to a daily and nightly routine. However, that has not always been the case. For years, I struggled with problem skin, and looking back on it, I was totally the cause.

I hate to admit it, but I used to be pretty lazy when it came to washing my face. Each night I would use a face wipe (thinking it would take off all of my makeup) followed by night cream. And in the morning, I would use face wash with my trustworthy Clarisonic (which I love). I thought I was doing everything right yet was left confused as to why my face was still suffering from surface breakouts.

My dermatologist told me that while the face wipes are great for the girl on the go, they do not clean your skin entirely nor do they remove all of your makeup…(!) She really stressed the importance of having a strict routine and using a cleanser that took off every trace of makeup.

A few months ago I had the opportunity to try this brand new skin care line by bareMinerals, called Skinsorials.  I’ve used their makeup since high school. so I knew it had to be great, but I was anxious to see if the skin care really lived up to all of the hype. The Skinsorials line has a handful of cleansers and moisturizers based on your skin type, so it’s easy to choose what’s best for you.

Based on the descriptions, I wanted to try the Total Cleansing Oil, Essential Moisturizing Soft Cream, and the Skinlongevity Face Serum.

Using a cleansing oil was new for me. I wasn’t sure how I felt about putting an oil on my face, but after trying it, I can’t go back!

So here’s how I use this 3 step system:

  1. I apply 3-4 pumps  of the Total Cleansing Oil to dry skin and gently massage over my face to dissolve makeup and impurities. After rubbing in circular motion, I then put my hands under warm water until the oil becomes milky. I keep rubbing in circular motions, then wash off. This gets off my mascara, foundation…everything! It’s pretty amazing. You can still use this with your clarisonic too! I find that it works best after you massage the oil over your dry face. After rubbing in circular motions, get your clarisonic wet with warm water, then use on your face.
  2. After cleansing, I apply two pumps of the Skinongevity Face Serum over my face and neck.  It’s important to apply this to clean skin. I have only used this for about a month, but have noticed a difference in the texture of my skin and it’s appearance. Be sure to use this morning and night!
  3. My final steps includes the Bare Haven moisturizer. I love the way my skin feels after using this soft cream. Be sure to use all three products every morning and night!

What are your favorite products? If you try this out, email me and let me know how you like it (theteacherdiva@gmail.com)!

Thanks for reading! xx

bare minerals skin care

cleansing oil

face serum

bareminerals face moisturizer

PRODUCT DETAILS: Bare Minerals Skinsorials Total Cleansing Oil // Skinlongevity // Bare Haven Soft Cream c/o // Robe // Celine Audrey Sunglasses (similar version under $10 here)

images by: mary summers 

- Black & White Spots -

polka dot blouse

If there’s one blouse you need to own, it’s this Tiered Tunic by Maeve. I love longer tops, so it’s no surprise I found this one last week when checking out Anthropologie’s 40% Off Sale. Unfortunately, this wasn’t on sale, but it was too good to pass up. I actually want to buy it in white and another print!

For an office look, simply pair this tunic black pants (I also love these white trousers) . If you want a little more color, I found these green pants that would look adorable with this top. I love the idea of pairing this with a Nude Pump or keeping it comfy is a pair of flats.

If  you’re looking for something a little more casual, I opted to pair it with my Current Elliot Jeans and Nine West Purple FlatsThis Wool Moto Jacket is (finally) on sale, and I can’t help but get excited to wear this through winter and early spring. I love winter whites and this coat is beautiful (and warm).

On a side note, I am off to Eatzies and Trader Joes to pick up some flowers and food for tonight’s dinner. Now that our house is done, we wanted it to be a an inviting place where we can host our family and friends. I’m excited for my family to come over for dinner to celebrate Austin’s birthday!

Hope you all have a great weekend and thanks so much for reading! xx

white moto jacket


magenta flats


black and white outfit

casual outfit

wool jacket

OUTFIT DETAILS: Maeve Lila Black And White Tunic (fit: Despite reviews, I found this to run true to size. I am wearing a small) | Banana Republic Wool Moto Jacket on sale (fiit: tts) | Current Elliot Distressed Denim (fit: tts) | Celine Box Bag | Nine West Smoking Slipper on sale (fit: tts) | David Yurman Chain Link Bracelet | Brandy Pham Double Cylinder Cuff  c/o | Michele Deco II (18 mm strap) c/o | Thumb Ring (I’ve actually purchased quite a few rings from her and I love that they never turn my fingers green. I can wash my hands with them on a be worry free!)| David Yurman Crossover Ring | Celine Sunglasses (similar version under $10 here) | Lipstick: “Spanish Pink”


images by: mary summers