How To Upgrade Your Apartment for Fall Like a French Girl

The Everygirl’s product selections are curated by the editorial team. If you buy something through our links, we may earn an affiliate commission, at no cost to you. We only recommend products we genuinely love.






Source: Alaina Kaczmarski

I love summer just as much as the next girl, but my apartment is itching to be decorated for fall. I want nothing but pumpkin spice candles and cozy pillows and am ready to never see pastel throw pillows or faux greenery again. Since I am a French girl wannabe (no, really), I decided to research how French girls are updating their homes for fall (because I’m guessing it’s not with a Hocus Pocus doormat or Bath & Body Works candle). And, of course, the current French decor trends did not disappoint. Not only will they get your home ready for more nights in and cold weather, but they’ll also give your entire style a total upgrade. 

Bonus hot tip: Call us biased, but the gorgeous pieces from The Everygirl’s collab with Interior Define come in a variety of shades in luxe velvet fabrics, ranging from chic neutrals to gorgeous jewel tones (but more on that below). Thanks to their timeless design and effortless appeal, we like to think the entire collection has that “je ne sais quoi.” Read on to check out the collection and find out how to update your home for the coziest season like a French girl. 

 

Jewel-tones





chair (in citrine) / side table / rug (in grey) / dried flowers / vase / gallery wall set

The weather is getting colder, which means Parisians are trading in their easy breezy neutrals for richer, darker jewel tones. Think: emerald, sapphire, ruby, and cobalt blue. Not only will a jewel-toned accent or furniture piece add a hue of royalty to your home, but it will also make your entire space feel more seasonally appropriate and cozy. 

 

Geometric accent furniture





couch (in iron) / ottoman / tray / faux eucalyptus / floor lamp / mirrors

This season, French girls are ditching anything that feels too stuffy and making their classic couches feel new again with geometric and modern furniture. Embrace those curves with oval coffee tables, rounded accent chairs, and eye-catching headboards. Aim for a mix of sharp corners (like a square couch) and rounded edges (like a curved chair) for an effortless look. 

 

Chunky marble





couch (sectional in greige) / coffee table / mirror / coffee table books / floor lamp / faux plant

No surprise: Parisians are all about their marble decor. The stylish (and classy) material goes with a lot of styles and can be found in many different price ranges. Opt for chunkier pieces that are full marble design rather than marble mixed with wood or gold, as it will look newer (and Parisians are all about that I-just-found-this-at-a-flea-market feel). Try it in an accent on your bookshelves or as a side table. 

 

Mix furniture





couch (the loveseat in sterling) / chair / ottoman / wall prints / plant

PSA: Parisians are not buying matching furniture sets and calling it a day. Interior design is an art, and they want their home to tell their stories. They’ll often mismatch colors or pick furniture from different styles or time periods to look intentionally contrasted. Think: a modern art piece with grandmillenial-style couch and a mid-century coffee table. 

 

Ornate art





chair (in navy) / end table / rug / Côte d’Azur print / Brigitte Bardot print / The Swing art print / Matisse print / black and white print / statue print / faux peonies

French girls know that art on the wall is like a pair of shoes: It’s the piece that draws the eye and can show off your style. When furniture is simple, a gallery wall can really shine. Don’t be afraid to combine colorful, edgy, and unique works to the walls (remember: The mismatched, effortless feel is the goal), and either mismatch frames for a more eclectic vibe or go with basic white to let the art do the talking. 

 

Velvet Sofas Are a Dream—Here’s How to Style Yours

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The Everygirl designed this product line in collaboration with Interior Define. If you buy a piece from our collection, we may earn a commission, at no cost to you. We only recommend products we genuinely love.

The Best Fall Jackets of 2021, Period

The Everygirl’s product selections are curated by the editorial team. If you buy something through our links, we may earn an affiliate commission, at no cost to you. We only recommend products we genuinely love.





Source: Aïda Badji Sané

It feels like the majority of us are waiting with bated breath for those first days that really feel like fall, but perhaps you’re someone who wants to hold onto summer, white-knuckled and rejecting any mention of a PSL or cozy knit. The thing that will get you to accept fall with open arms? The once-a-year fall jackets.

Each season has its perks, but one of fall’s main ones is the styling options that come with the jackets. It’s too early for the bulky coats of winter, but it’s crisp enough that you need an added layer, and that window is one that needs to be taken advantage of.

With rich tones and cozy textures and a world of outfit options to create with them, fall 2021’s jackets are here, and they came to make a statement. One look at these and you’ll be packing your summer clothes away without so much as a batted eye.

 

Cropped Blazers

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A post shared by Samio – samio.co.uk (@samiorenelda)

Blazers are considered a constant in terms of fall wear, but this year, there’s a twist: They’re a bit shorter than usual. Blazers that hit near the waist are not only the hottest take on the classic jacket but also one of the hottest pieces of fall fashion, period.

Abercrombie & Fitch

Cropped Blazer

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Missguided

Stone Cropped Blazer

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Abercrombie & Fitch

Tweed Cropped Blazer

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ELOQUII

Tweed Bolero Jacket

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ZARA

Textured Blazer

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ZARA

Buttoned Cropped Blazer

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Faux Fur

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A post shared by Aïda Badji Sané (@basicstouch)

There’s nothing like a fur moment for fall, and this year, fur is a bit shaggier than usual. With a bit more of a disheveled texture, faux fur is making jackets interesting and giving a 2021 twist to the classic shearling teddy coat. It gives a bit of excitement to any look and is easy to pull off.

Abercrombie & Fitch

Cropped Sherpa Shirt Jacket

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BB DAKOTA BY STEVE MADDEN

Faux Fur Teddy Coat

2 colors available
Shop now

H&M

Trench Coat with Fur Lining

2 colors available
Shop now

H&M

Faux Fur Coat

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ASOS

Hooded Faux Fur Coat

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ASOS

Faux Fur Shacket

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Bomber Jackets

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A post shared by Juna – Streetwear (@junabanda_)

There’s something that feels nostalgic about bomber jackets, no? Whether it’s because of their resemblance to the classic letterman jacket or just because they always tend to circulate back into style, they feel like a piece of fall that we’re always happy to come back to. 

Abercrombie & Fitch

Faux Leather Bomber Jacket

2 colors available
Shop now

ELOQUII

Varsity Jacket

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BB DAKOTA BY STEVE MADDEN

Faux Leather Hooded Jacket

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MANGO

Checked Jacket

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ASOS

Faux Leather Bomber Jacket

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ASOS

Curve Faux Leather Bomber Jacket

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Shearling Trim

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A post shared by Chandler DeHart (@candidlychan)

In 2020, all anyone could talk about (or wear, for that matter) was the teddy coat, and for good reason. But this year, shearling is a bit more understated, with jackets having embellishments of it near the seams, collar, and cuffs instead of being the overall material. The result? A natural feeling of glam that we’re totally on board with.

BILLABONG X WRANGLER

Faux Fur Lining Jean Jacket

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BP Plus

Denim Trucker Jacket with Faux Shearling Collar

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ASOS

Panelled Blue Faux Fur Jacket

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ASOS

Black Fleece Shacket

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ASOS

Faux Suede Aviator Jacket

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ASOS

Sherpa Aviator

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Puffers

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A post shared by Yuyan (@itsyuyann)

We all probably have a puffer or two in our wardrobes, but this year, they’re a little more exciting than we’re used to. In fun patterns, saturated colors, and oversized fits, they’re the jacket you’re going to want to wrap yourself in day in and day out.

Abercrombie & Fitch

Vegan Leather Puffer Jacket

6 colors available
Shop now

Abercrombie & Fitch

Utility Puffer Jacket

2 colors available
Shop now

H&M

Cropped Puffer Jacket

2 colors available
Shop now

H&M+

Padded Vest

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ASOS

Washed Linen Puffer Jacket

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ASOS

Oversized Puffer Jacket

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The Only Boots You Need for Fall 2021
plus what to wear them with
READ ON

 

Inside the 7 Hours It Takes to Turn Jessica Chastain Into Tammy Faye Bakker

polaroids of tammy faye bakker and jessica chastain playing bakker in the eyes of tammy faye movieFox Searchlight Pictures; Getty Images. Design by Clara Hendler

In the opening scene from The Eyes of Tammy Faye, the infamous televangelist, played by Jessica Chastain, tells a makeup artist that she won't be removing her lashes for a shoot. It's a callback to Fenton Bailey's and Randy Barbato's 2000 documentary, on which the 2021 film is based. "That's my trademark, and if I take my trademark away, then it’s not me," Tammy Faye Bakker says in the documentary. "You can do anything else, but my eyelashes stay where they are." Bakker was a four-foot-eleven firecracker with big lashes, and an even bigger heart, who loved Jesus as much as she loved her L’Oreal Waterproof Lash Out Mascara. She would become known for her over-the-top look as much as she would the scandals that befell the multimillion-dollar evangelism empire she started with her then-husband Jim Bakker.

Tammy Faye Bakker (later Messner) was a gospel singer from the Midwest who rose to fame in the 1970s, due to the success of The PTL Club (also known as The Jim and Tammy Show), a daily religious talk show she hosted with Jim. Her look was intense compared to the average Christian woman: eyelashes heavily coated with mascara, bright eyeshadow, overdrawn lips, an assemblage of wigs, and a closet filled with fur, animal print, and rhinestones galore.

While Bakker wasn't the only televangelist with eccentric style (The Trinity Broadcasting Network's Jan Crouch, her one-time collaborator, was known for her own gigantic, lilac-hued hairstyle), she stood out from her colleagues because she supported the gay community. During its height in the 1980s, The PTL Club's viewership reached over 13 million homes and brought in close to $130 million in annual revenue — until it all came crashing down.

Financial and sex scandals plagued the Bakkers, leading to Jim's arrest and every late-night talk show host to use Tammy Faye as a mascara tears-filled punchline. Saturday Night Live's Jan Hooks became known for her Tammy Faye impressions, while other comedians like Jay Leno and Johnny Carson frequently mocked her; it was said she "had an addiction to Maybelline." (She had an actual addiction to Ativan and once overdosed.) You can still buy T-shirts depicting a face smeared with lipstick and eyeshadow that read, "I ran into Tammy Faye at the mall." But those jokes never came between Bakker and her mascara wand. "What people don't get is when they make fun of me, I'm in on it. So it's OK," Bakker once told Larry King.

Making Tammy Faye was a passion project for Chastain, whose own opinion of Bakker had changed after she watched the original documentary. "I had this judgment against her, and I realized it's so fascinating how the media can give everyone a collective memory that may not really be the truth," Chastain told the LA Times. "I wanted to do something about it to honor her."

A Tale of Prosthetics and Drugstore Makeup

still from The Eyes of Tammy Faye featuring Andrew Garfield as Jim Bakker and Jessica Chastain as Tammy Faye Bakker....

Garfield and Chastain in The Eyes of Tammy Faye

Fox Searchlight Picturesjim bakker and tammy faye bakker greeting supporters as they leave federal court during jim's trial for fraud and conspiracy

Jim and Tammy Faye Bakker greeting supporters during Jim’s trial.

Getty Images

Chastain, who was also a producer on the film, accurately portrayed all of Bakker's quirks, from her Diet Coke obsession (there’s a closeup of her cracking open a can with a nail file) to the Vicks VapoRub she kept on her nightstand (Bakker applied it as a neck cream every evening), to her habit of wearing a full face of makeup to bed. (She told the LA Times in 1987: "Jim has very seldom seen me without makeup and hardly ever in my life without my eyelashes.") To recreate her famous look, from the wigs, to the shoulder pads, and, of course, the spidery lashes, Chastain underwent a full transformation to portray Bakker over four decades, requiring four to seven hours in the makeup chair as makeup, wigs, and extensive prosthetics were applied. (Andrew Garfield, who plays Jim, also wore prosthetics.)

"Tammy was somebody who — she was very specific, very proud of the way she looked," Linda Dowds, makeup department head for the film and longtime makeup artist for Chastain, tells Allure. "She'd always put herself together, and we wanted to honor that." Bakker's key beauty looks in the film spanned from the early 1960s, when she first met and married Jim Bakker, to pivotal moments in the early and late '70s and '80s, finally ending in 1994 (when she had her lip liner, eyeliner, eyebrows, and a beauty mark permanently tattooed). "Everything that she did was very matchy-matchy, so we played mostly within the realms of blues, lilacs, and pink shadows," says Dowds. "With the lip color, she loved pink, so we did a lot of that."

special effects artists applying prosthetics to jessica chastain for the movie the eyes of tammy faye

The team applying prosthetics to Chastain.

Fox Searchlight Pictures

Despite her financial success, Bakker still preferred to buy drugstore makeup, and sometimes bought her makeup at the swapmeet, so Dowds did the same to create the looks. Because Bakker's favorite mascara, L’Oreal Lash Out, had been discontinued sometime in the early aughts, Dowds figured out a good substitute was L'Oréal Voluminous Original Mascara (coated over Ardell Individual Knot Free Flare Lashes). Sometimes Dowds would reuse the lashes so they looked even more realistic: "Tammy said, 'Who said you can't put mascara on fake lashes? I do it all the time.' And so that's what we did." For eyeshadow, Dowds used quads from the Revlon ColorStay 16 Hour and L'Oreal Paris Colour Riche collections. At least nine different Revlon lipsticks were used, including the shade Cherries in the Snow, which has been in the brand's lineup for decades. For Bakker's always-impeccable manicure, pre-painted Kiss Press On Nails were used.

According to Dowds, there were two key elements in creating Tammy: the beauty side and the prosthetic elements. "It was super important to me that we never lost sight of the beauty aspect of Tammy's makeup," she says. "Combining prosthetics and beauty can be challenging at the best of times, but I believe more so when recreating Tammy; her look was 'large' in real life, and combined with prosthetics I was always aware of the risk of crossing a sometimes very fine line between being authentic, and going over the top in an untruthful way."

The Making of Tammy's Face

Justin Raleigh, the film's prosthetic makeup designer, says that when he's designing prosthetics, he tries to find the "hallmark elements" that are similar between the actor and their character. "Obviously, with Tammy, it's her cheeks; she has these big round cheeks, and Jessica has a very sculpted, sort of angular face, so that's a key hallmark element," Raleigh explains. "You don't want to completely lose your actor, but you need enough to transform them into the other person." Aside from enhancing Chastain's cheeks so they resembled Bakker's, the prosthetic work included filling in Chastain's chin dimple, pulling her nose up a bit, and changing her lip line. 

still of jessica chastain as tammy faye bakker in the eyes of tammy faye. chastain wears a white dress and blue...

Chastain as Bakker

Fox Searchlight Picturestammy faye bakker wearing a bright red sweater and blue eyeshadow holding up a stuffed white bear to the camera

Tammy Faye Bakker

Getty Images

Keeping a balance between authenticity and avoiding caricature was an important focus for the team. If an eyelash fell on Chastain's cheek or her mascara was smudged, and it worked for the scene, they might keep it. But since Bakker's appearance was often fodder for late-night talk show hosts, Dowds was "very conscious" of not perpetuating that with her makeup. "You never want the audience to be taken out of the film because something that you have done pulled them out of it, or something became so distracting," he says.

The Wigs of Tammy Faye

hair stylists and makeup artists touching up jessica chastain on the set of the eyes of tammy faye

Touch-ups on set.

Fox Searchlight Pictures

Hair department head Stephanie Ingram custom-made 10 wigs for Chastain to wear throughout the film, including a blonde bouffant flip for a ‘60s party scene and a curly 1980s mullet. While her makeup became dramatically bolder over the years, Bakker’s hair had an evolution of its own. In the scene when she first meets Jim, she's a brunette, which is followed by her blonde days, and then varying shades of red in the later years. In her 2003 autobiography, I Will Survive… and You Will, Too!, Bakker refers to her wigs as "kind of like my security blanket" and includes advice on how to properly care for them. "I think every woman should have at least one wig for emergencies," she writes.

The Final Touches

still of jessica chastain as tammy faye bakker in the eyes of tammy faye. chastain sits at a vanity applying makeup.

Chastain in The Eyes of Tammy Faye

Fox Searchlight Pictures

To bring Tammy Faye's iconic look together, costume designer Mitchell Travers worked closely with the makeup team to make sure that the body padding matched the proportions of the prosthetic sculpt. "We also used clever jewelry placement to help hide prosthetic seams on the neck and ears," Travers tells Allure. "I collaborated with the hair designer to make sure that all of the looks were carefully considered head to toe. Tammy was the type of woman who'd match a scrunchie to her shoes, or a silk head scarf to her purse. She really believed in a full look!"

In her autobiography, Bakker admits that she's never been able to figure out why people have taken her makeup so seriously, especially her lashes. "Little fake hairs with black mascara on them — how can they cause such a stir?" she writes. "Must be a lot of bored people around…" Dowds admires how Bakker never apologized for her look at all even though she knew that people made fun of her. "She was so grounded in the fact that that's what made her happy. She loved putting on makeup," says Dowds. "One of the things that I so respected about her was that she lived her own truth. She liked how she looked, she didn't matter what other people thought, and she would just throw on a little more if she felt like it."

Is It Normal To Bleed After Sex? We Asked Experts






Source: Lunya

There’s no worse post-sex feeling than going to the bathroom and looking down at your underwear to find a spot of blood. You quickly think to yourself, “Am I on my period?” and when the answer is no, you start panic-searching and land on WebMd, only to read about the absolute worst-case, no-chill scenarios. But is there reason to panic, or is it normal to bleed after sex?

Bleeding after sex is actually an extremely common occurrence. And although in most cases it’s perfectly harmless, in other cases, it has the potential to lead to some tricky issues. We sat down with a few trusted doctors to ask as many questions as we could about post-coital bleeding so that next time, you won’t have to resort to Google.

Meet the expert
Dr. Melissa Wong
OB-GYN
Dr. Wong is an OB-GYN at Boston Medical Center.

Meet the expert
Dr. Lauren Demosthenes
OB-GYN, SENIOR MEDICAL DIRECTOR AT BABYSCRIPTS
Dr. Demosthenes is an OB-GYN and professor in South Carolina.

Meet the expert
Dr. Nicole Williams
BOARD-CERTIFIED GYNECOLOGIC SURGEON
Dr. Williams is a gynecologist in Chicago and an author.

 

What are the different reasons we might bleed after sex?

There are a ton of different reasons why someone might experience bleeding after sex, and these reasons can range from something as harmless as vaginal dryness to something more severe. This is why it’s important to educate ourselves on the topic as much as we can and talk to a professional when needed. 

 





Source: ColorJoy Stock

 

Vaginal dryness or inflammation

Listen, being sensitive doesn’t make you weak, and the same applies to our vaginas. Our vaginas are powerful, but the delicate balance of healthy bacteria down there can make them, as well as the surrounding vulva area, a bit sensitive.

“For people who are receiving penetrative sex (meaning something is being inserted into the vagina), bleeding can happen as a result of stretching or scratching of the vaginal surfaces,” said Melissa L. Wong, M.D., OB/GYN at Boston Medical Center.

And if you have any of these cuts, scratches, or small abrasions in or around your vagina, your body may not be producing as much fluid as usual.

“Vaginal dryness can lead to small abrasions after intercourse, and these may bleed,” said Dr. Lauren Demosthenes, senior medical director at Babyscripts. “So if you experience vaginal dryness, using a lubricant with intercourse may definitely help.”

According to Dr. Nicole Williams, Chicago gynecologist and author of This Is How You Vagina: All About the Vajayjay and Why You Probably Shouldn’t Call It That, if you don’t really experience any vagina dryness when having sex, inflammation might also be a cause of bleeding.

“Generally, I find women who bleed after sex, unassociated with menstruation, will usually have inflammation of the cervix or vagina, which is usually just treated with a topical antibiotic for several days,” Dr. Williams said.

 

Vaginal infection

Like I mentioned earlier, vaginas house a balanced system of “good” and “bad” bacteria that keep us healthy. But when this balance gets knocked out of whack, it can lead to a vaginal infection.

One of the most common vaginal infections is a yeast infection. This can occur when your antifungal bacteria is off balance, which allows for an overgrowth of a fungus called candida (a type of yeast).

Now before you get too grossed out by the thought of a fungus in your body, you should know that we actually have yeast in our bodies at all times, and it’s actually very healthy. Only when there’s an overgrowth is there a problem.

A common symptom of yeast or vaginal infection is itching, which can sometimes be severe. “Vaginal infections can cause a lot of itching, and scratching down there may lead to bleeding,” Dr. Demosthenes said.

 

Period-related bleeding

According to Dr. Williams, it’s also possible that you might experience period-related bleeding after sex, even after your period is over.

“If you are at the end of your menstrual cycle, you may experience some bleeding after sex due to some leftover tissue in the uterus,” Dr. Williams said.

 





Source: ColorJoy Stock

 

STIs

Certain types of STIs may also lead to post-coital bleeding. “Vaginal or vulvar lesions like herpes or syphilis may bleed after contact during sex,” Dr. Demosthenes said. “And other STIs like chlamydia and gonorrhea can cause an abnormal discharge and some light bleeding.”

Dr. Demosthenes noted that whether you have vaginal bleeding or not, getting screened for STIs is crucial when engaging with any new sexual partners.

 

Polyp

According to Dr. Wong, bleeding after sex may be a sign of something a bit more abnormal, “such as the growth of a polyp or mass.”

Cervical polyps are growths that can be found on the edge of the cervix where it meets the vagina, and although they’re usually benign, it’s always a good idea to get them looked at in case.

“A polyp on the cervix or in the uterus can also cause persistent bleeding, and these can usually be removed in the office or as an outpatient procedure if necessary,” Dr. Demosthenes said.

 

Cervical cancer

In rare cases, bleeding after sex can be a sign of a more serious issue. “Cervical cancers and cancers of the uterus may also lead to bleeding after intercourse, so people who are not up to date on their pap smears should have this checked out as soon as possible,” Dr. Demosthenes said.

 

Endometriosis

A uterus naturally has tissue that grows inside and forms a lining along its walls, which is why we bleed during our periods. Endometriosis is a problem that can occur when tissue begins to form on the outside of the uterus, causing a lot of pain, heavy cramps, and sometimes chronic fatigue. A very common symptom of endometriosis is bleeding after sex.

 





Source: We-Vibe Toys | Unsplash

 

What to do if you bleed after sex

The first thing to do is try your best not to panic because chances are, you may just need to load up on some lube next time you have sex. However, it’s important to be aware of your body in these moments, and whether or not you see a doctor should depend on how often the bleeding occurs, how much blood there is, and if there is pain along with it.

“If bleeding after sex happens once in a while and is no heavier than spotting, it’s probably normal,” Dr. Wong said. “But if you consistently bleed after sex, you feel pain after sex, or if the bleeding becomes heavy like a period, you may want to talk to your health care provider to make sure there’s nothing abnormal going on.”

If there’s any doubt in your mind, it never hurts to go get a check-up for peace of mind. Besides, knowing that everything is OK down there can help us be fully present and have way more enjoyable sex!

 

5 Things You’re Doing to Your Vagina That You Shouldn’t Be

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5 Things an OB-GYN Wants You to Know About Sex

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Khloé Kardashian Just Convinced Us to Go Platinum Blonde for Fall

Khlo Kardashian standing on the red carpet with short hairCourtesy of Getty 

Once again, Khloé Kardashian is urging us all to try one of this fall's biggest hair color trends. In the last week of August, KoKo sported some shadow roots in an announcement for the clothing line she co-founded, Good American. Now, the reality star is donning another one of the trends colorists Allure has spoken to say has been highly requested this season: "just-from-the salon blonde."

She shared her new platinum blonde mane in an Instagram post on Thursday, September 16. Even though it's obvious that a bright light is shining on her, her hair still looks very blonde. Kardashian also revealed the glam team behind her latest hair color transformation, which included her go-to hairstylist Andrew Fitzsimons and colorist Tracey Cunningham. 

Both Cunningham and Fitzsimons shared some photos of the look via Instagram, but Cunningham also provided a breakdown of the products she used to get KoKo's hair platinum blonde. The lineup consisted of one of Redken's Flash Lift products (Cunningham is a Redken partner), some Olaplex before adding color (Cunningham is also an Olaplex partner), and Redken's Shades 010 N on the hairline's roots. 

Instagram content

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If you're considering going platinum blonde like KoKo this fall, always make sure to schedule a consultation with a colorist, especially if your natural color is dark like hers, to discuss everything that'll go into the upkeep of so much bleach. On the flip side, if you're already blonde, "just-from-the-salon blonde" is a relatively low-maintenance hair color option for the season. As Sydney, Australia-based colorist Kate Reid previously told Allure, folks with medium to fine hair would also fare well with this color because "[blonde] helps to create thickness in the hair." Besides, blondes do have more fun, right? Now, to the salon!

All products featured on Allure are independently selected by our editors. However, when you buy something through our retail links, we may earn an affiliate commission.

25 Easy Meal Prep Recipes You’ll Make All The Time






Source: The Girl on Bloor

It happens every few weeks without fail. I look up from my laptop as the clock strikes 5:30 p.m. and all of a sudden realize that 1. I have to make something for dinner and 2. I have absolutely no clue what that dinner is going to be. I know I’m not alone in this all-too-regular dilemma, but I can’t help but feel like it says something about my adulting abilities (or, occasionally, lack thereof). Those who meal prep: 1, Lauren: 0.

Even just a loose meal plan and a little forethought can prevent those hanger pains that tend to creep in as I search my refrigerator and kitchen cabinets, hoping that I won’t have to resort to my trusty takeout go-to. Sure, you have to invest a little bit of time up front, but it will all be worth it when you don’t fall victim to those vicious delivery fees.

We’re looking for something quick, we’re looking for something easy, we’re looking for something with maximum flavor—without maximum time spent at the stove. If that’s what you want (or—let’s be honest—need) too, look no further than these 25 easy meal prep recipes. Delicious without being super time-consuming? Check and check.

 

1. Vegan Burritos





Source: Jessica in the Kitchen

 

2. Baked Chicken Caesar Burgers





Source: Lexi’s Clean Kitchen

 

3. Curried Chickpea Cauliflower Bake





Source: Cotter Crunch

 

4. Spicy Italian Sausage and Tortellini Soup





Source: Meal Prep on Fleek

 

5. Black Bean Stuffed Sweet Potatoes





Source: The Girl on Bloor

 

6. Dairy-Free Broccoli Cheese Soup





Source: Orchids + Sweet Tea

 

7. Shawarma Spiced Stuffed Peppers with Tahini Sauce





Source: Abra’s Kitchen

 

8. Smashed White Bean and Spinach Quesadillas





Source: Sweet Peas and Saffron

 

9. Air Fryer Tofu with Honey Garlic Sauce





Source: Hello Spoonful

 

10. Spaghetti Squash Lasagna





Source: By Erin Clarke of Well Plated

 

11. Sweet Potato Black-Eyed Pea Curry





Source: Sweet Potato Soul

 

12. Slow Cooker Garlic Cuban-Inspired Pork





Source: Slender Kitchen

 

13. Meal Prep Thai Basil Chicken





Source: The Girl on Bloor

 

14. Vegetable Soup





Source: Abra’s Kitchen

 

15. Sheet Pan Sausage and Veggies





Source: Isabel Eats

 

16. Mozzarella Pesto Mac and Cheese





Source: Chantell and Brett Quernemoen | My Name is Yeh

 

17. Buffalo Chicken Stuffed Peppers





Source: By Erin Clarke of Well Plated

 

18. Whole30 Breakfast Casserole





Source: Hello Spoonful

 

19. Korean-Inspired Ground Beef Bowls





Source: Lexi’s Clean Kitchen

 

20. Slow Cooker Chipotle Honey Chicken Taco Salad





Source: Sweet Peas and Saffron

 

21. Kale Steak Power Salad





Source: Meal Prep on Fleek

 

22. Crispy Chickpea Salad Kit with Butter Fried Croutons





Source: My Name is Yeh

 

23. Lentil Coconut Curry





Source: Slender Kitchen

 

24. Slow Cooker Mushroom Wild Rice Soup





Source: Jessica in the Kitchen

 

25. Winter Kale Salad





Source: Sweet Potato Soul

 

Do you meal prep? Share your favorite quick and easy recipes below.

 

Scalp Care Reigns Among These Exciting New September Hair Launches

21 New HairCare Products to Try in September 2021  Reviews Shop

Allure/Clara Hendler

September generally signals the start of many transitions — hair included. Summer may have done a number on your color, moisture, and overall hair health, but luckily there are always new hair innovations brewing to help whip things back into shape. Or, if you're looking for a seasonal switch-up, there are plenty of options for that, too.

This month's offerings run the styling and hair-care gamut — with a heavy focus on scalp care. Fans of the original Wet Brush, which has won Best of Beauty awards, just launched a scalp massager that will for sure elevate your washday. There's also an exciting addition to Dyson's hot tool lineup that will transform your at-home blowout. Plus, sun-scorched (or generally dry) hair will benefit from Philip Kingsley's latest treatment. 

Throughout the month we'll be sharing details on other new product launches, including two options for color-treated hair that you can use right in your bathroom. For now, keep scrolling to see the rest of the best new hair-care products to snap up in September.

Be sure to check back weekly for new hair-care launches that are dropping this month. (Trust us, you don't want to miss out.)

All products featured on Allure are independently selected by our editors. However, when you buy something through our retail links, we may earn an affiliate commission.

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How pH Balance Could Be Destroying Your Hair

The Everygirl’s product selections are curated by the editorial team. If you buy something through our links, we may earn an affiliate commission, at no cost to you. We only recommend products we genuinely love.






Source: Liubov Ilchuk | Unsplash

In the last 10 years, I’ve probably spent a quarter of all of my earnings on my hair. Between consistent cuts, changing colors, new products, tools, and about a thousand shampoos and conditioners, I’ve forked up a considerable amount of cash to keep my hair healthy and looking good. But I’ve recently discovered that my efforts have likely gone a little unnoticed because I was missing a crucial part: making sure my hair had a healthy pH balance.

“I’ve seen many adverse effects on my clients’ hair over the years from consistent lack of pH balance,” said Nina Lemtir, a previous salon owner and hair and wellness coach. If your hair is feeling just a bit “off,” pH might be to blame.

Meet the expert
Jill Turnbull
PROFESSIONAL HAIRSTYLIST
Turnbull is a professional hairstylist and the founder of Jill Turnbull Beauty.

 

What is pH?

Taking it back to chemistry class, potential of hydrogen (what we know as “pH”) refers to the activity of hydrogen ions (molecules that carry a negative or positive charge) in a water-based solution. A pH is considered acidic if it’s anywhere between 0 and 6.9, while 7 is neutral and anything from 7.1 to 14 is considered alkaline. The scalp has a natural pH of 5.5, meaning it’s acidic. How does this impact your scalp? Well, our skin is mostly made of water, and the pH can change how our skin retains it, including the skin on our scalp.

 





Source: Stocksy

 

Why is a pH-balanced scalp important?

“If you’re not using pH-balanced hair care, you’re likely doing unintentional damage to your hair and scalp,” said professional hairstylist Jill Turnbull. “When you use hair care that is not pH balanced, your hair becomes temporarily acidic or alkaline, depending on the pH level. This causes the cuticle to stay open and become more receptive to damage.”

This is impactful regardless of hair type, but it’s especially important in the natural hair community. To keep your curls moisturized and defined, your scalp naturally produces more oil than straight or wavy hair, making your pH even more acidic. Using a product with a pH of 7 or higher is prone to causing extra frizziness in your curls, scalp dryness, and irritation.

 

How do we keep our hair pH-balanced?

It’s normal for our hair’s pH balance to sway back and forth a bit due to water (which has a natural pH of 7), our environment, the sun, and more. When our hair is consistently put in an alkaline state thanks to our products, that’s when we experience dryness, irritation, flaking, itchiness, and more. 

If you want more of a quick fix, trichologist (someone who studies and focuses on hair health and scalp) Shab Reslan suggested using apple cider vinegar alone. “If somebody wants another natural way to lower their hair’s pH, they could do an apple cider vinegar rinse using three tablespoons of apple cider vinegar and a bottle of water and rinsing their hair with that.”

On the other hand, making sure your regular hair care routine keeps your hair and scalp pH-balanced can reduce frizz, prevent breakage, keep hair looking and feeling moisturized, make your color last longer, and prevent your scalp from getting greasy.

 





Source: Karolina Grabowska | Unsplash

 

Unless you pH-test all of your products yourself, the only way to know the pH of a product is if a brand provides it or by doing your research from those who have used it in the past. Don’t worry if you feel confused. Many brands still don’t include the pH of their products on their websites, but always check the FAQ for the brand, do your research, and feel free to reach out to the brand for that information if you’re unsure.

 

Products to Try

 

Shampoos and Rinses

Using a pH-balancing shampoo once a week can help bring your hair back and keep you from irritation in the future without having to overhaul your entire routine. 





dpHue

Apple Cider Vinegar Hair Rinse

You can use this instead of shampoo to clean and clarify your hair without stripping it. Our editor’s favorite way to use this is in between washes when you need a quick fix (like after a hard workout class) that’s a little more than dousing your hair in copious amounts of dry shampoo.

If you have fine hair, dpHUE just launched a Lite ACV Rinse that is a little less moisturizing and won’t weigh your hair down iIt’s already a holy grail in our beauty editor’s shower).

Shop it now





OUAI

Detox Shampoo

This product contains apple cider vinegar, which naturally lowers the pH of the product, leaving your hair feeling ultra clean without stripping it of its natural oils.

Shop it now





Pureology

Hydrate Shampoo

Pureology is one of those rare, unicorn brands that discloses the pH of its products, and every shampoo in their line has a pH of 5.3 (even below the recommended 5.5!). This shampoo is super moisturizing and soothing on the scalp (thanks to green tea and jojoba oil) but still ideal for fine hair types.

Shop it now





Mielle Organics

Babassu Oil Conditioning Shampoo

This will nourish all hair types but is especially recommended for curly and coily hair textures that need lots of moisture from root to tip.

Shop it now





Redken

Acidic Bonding Concentrate Shampoo

This is one of the only products on the market actually targeted at being acidic and balancing your scalp’s pH. Our editor reviewed this product, and she thinks it even works better than Olaplex on her damaged, blonde locks.

Shop it now

 

Leave-Ins and Treatments

If you want to add a few other pH-balanced products to your routine, focus on products that stay in your hair, like leave-ins, or low pH treatments that get a long time on your hair (like a mask). 





Davines

Volu Hair Mist

This has a balanced pH that will leave your hair soft and shiny without leaving it feeling crunchy.

Shop it now





Briogeo

Curl Charisma Frizz Control Gel

Fight frizz, define your curls, and keep your hair healthy? Briogeo is a mainstay in our editors’ hair care routines because their products pack a punch, all without sulfates, silicones, and parabens.

Shop it now





Olaplex

No. 3 Hair Perfector

The classic Olaplex No. 3 has a low pH, which is one of the ways it’s able to actually repair your hair’s damage over time instead of just masking it by making the hair appear more moisturized. Those with extremely damaged hair from relaxers and bleaching swear by Olaplex for bringing their hair back to life.

Shop it now





DevaCurl

Scalp D(pH)ense Daily Nourishing & Protecting Serum

This scalp serum protects your hair against all those environmental factors (like water, pollution, the sun) and life factors (heat damage, chemical relaxers, coloring your hair) from damage from being in an alkaline pH.

Shop it now

 

I Realized My Cleanser Was Sabotaging My Skin—Here’s How

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How a Kitchen Island Can Transform Your Apartment






Source: Danielle Moss | The Everygirl

We all know that one of the hallmarks of apartment living is having to deal with a smaller-than-average kitchen. And that’s stating it generously—if you live in New York City like I do, your kitchen may truly be minuscule, if you’re lucky enough to even have a super defined prep space at all! I took many virtual tours of apartments that featured mini-fridges or refrigerators positioned in the living room. We city gals have truly seen it all when it comes to cramped spaces.

Recently, though, I’ve noticed that many fellow apartment dwellers have gotten creative when it comes to optimizing their storage and prep space. The secret? Purchasing a freestanding kitchen island that looks chic enough to elevate even the most dated of kitchen spaces and is also ultra-functional. Below, we’re showing you five faux island setups that will make you want to purchase one of your own—because let’s face it, throwing together an entire meal or engaging in some therapeutic Sunday afternoon baking can prove pretty challenging when your only available countertop is approximately the size of a standard placemat.

 

1. Turn your island into a coffee station

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A post shared by Marianne Sides | The MA Times (@mariannesides)

Just because it’s called an island doesn’t mean that the piece you purchase has to be put in the middle of your kitchen—again, many of us don’t have the square footage or room layout for this to be a possibility. Instead, push your island up against a wall and turn it into a mini coffee bar or a place to stash bowls or fruit—you name it! By moving bulky coffee makers off of the main counter and giving them a designated home of their own, you’ll free up prep space close to the oven, which will definitely come in handy when cooking meals.

 

2. Or style it as a breakfast bar

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A post shared by Carly | MY NYC APARTMENT (@mycityapartment)

If you’re not as concerned about counter space but are a bit more ambivalent about your seating situation, opt for an island with an overhang and style your own breakfast bar. Bonus points if the piece features storage cabinets on the other side; use these to tuck away unsightly appliances and bulky pots and pans.

 

3. Use an island to corral cooking essentials

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A post shared by 𝕋ℍ𝔼 𝕄𝔸ℝ𝕂𝕊 𝔽𝔸𝕄𝕀𝕃𝕐 (@adventureintow)

Even a small kitchen cart can make a big impact. A piece like this one should be able to function in even the tiniest of cooking spaces and makes for a great place to set aside ingredients while cooking. There are always items that you need to keep nearby but can’t quite squeeze onto the countertop without risking a spill—we’ve been there.

 

4. Try this twist on the classic bar cart

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A post shared by Miranda Schroeder (@thoughtfullythrifted)

Those looking for an ultra-functional twist on the traditional bar cart might want to source an island that offers plenty of wine glass storage. This makes for an ideal setup when entertaining, too—guests can easily serve themselves, and multiple people can gather around the island at once to fill their glasses.

 

5. Fill a narrow spot with a wooden piece

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A post shared by Shelby | Pretty in the Pines (@prettyinthepines)

A thin wood console table can also serve a key purpose and is a great choice for long and narrow kitchens. Use it as a sit-down coffee bar and sip your morning cup of Joe somewhere that isn’t your stain-prone sofa!

 

6 Genius Ways to Make Your Small Living Room Feel So Much Bigger

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When Bathing Is About More Than Just Being Physically Clean

photo of a woman in a bath filled with rose petals the rose petals are moving in a gifIllustration by Clara Hendler

"I love water. I love praying into the water before I get to a bath, or even just to take a shower," says Juju Bae, a Hoodoo and Ifa practitioner who speaks about Black traditional religions on her podcast, A Little Juju. "Even if I'm not always putting all the good juju in the water, water in itself is holy. Water itself can hold your intention."

In many Black spiritual practices that predate colonial interactions, there has long been a reverence for water and cleansing. These rituals and concepts have been preserved and transported to the Americas and beyond as a byproduct of the Trans-Atlantic Slave trade. They can be found in everything from African Traditional Religions and their descendants, such as Ifa and Black American Hoodoo, to the cultural syncretism embedded in Black expressions of Abrahamic religions.

"Water has no enemy," says Juju Bae. "It cleanses us physically, it cleanses us spiritually." She emphasizes that in many African Traditional Religions, water is venerated and viewed as a life source. In the West, she notes, that reverence for nature isn't typically quite as significant. This has a distinct effect on Black people's contemporary relationship to water and its multifaceted uses. And in recent months, an aversion to water, soap, or any kind of hygienic tool or practice has been brought to the forefront of our cultural discourse.

The Hygiene Culture Wars

A phenomenon that can only be aptly described as the "hygiene culture wars" has recently taken hold of digital media. Celebrities have openly shared their bathing regimens, often without waiting for anyone to ask them about it; from Ashton Kutcher and Mila Kunis disclosing their reluctance to clean their children if they aren't visibly soiled to Jake Gyllenhaal asserting that he deems bathing to be less necessary as "we naturally clean ourselves."

photo of a woman submerged in a bath the water is peach and swirly and here are roses in the bath.Illustration by Clara Hendler

Most folks who take the "less is more" approach to bathing insist that their infrequent washing adheres to contemporary medical guidance from dermatologists. (For what it's worth, dermatologists Allure has spoken to say showering once — or even twice — a day is generally just fine for your skin.) Predictably, the reaction to these revelations was overwhelming, with folks on social media rushing to share their own perspectives on cleanliness and hygienic practices. Unsurprisingly, much of Black Twitter expressed distaste over such blasé routines.

Whether or not someone's hygiene habits are considered acceptable has more to do with power and class than the medical legitimacy of their routines. The so-called elite have a history of viewing the lower classes (in which Black people are overrepresented) as filthy and undesirable, no matter how many times they bathe per day. As physician James Hamblin, who is white and went viral for his disclosure that he had stopped showering, put it: "One of the main reasons I've been able to go so long without using [shampoo and deodorant] is because of the privilege of my position in American society. To the degree that these standards are culturally determined, I am coming from the group that has created these norms."

Digital discourse notwithstanding, containing the concept of cleansing in relation to whiteness and wealth is extremely limiting in scope and context, despite the comical levels of disgust expressed by Black people and other POC in the Twitterverse. For many Black people, especially those who follow the practices and rituals of African Traditional Religions, hygiene is both a physical and spiritual requirement.

Spiritual Cleansing Across Practices

Physically, this appreciation of water can extend to a variety of regular rituals such as spiritual baths. "People are into cleansing their homes, smoking out their homes with sage, palo santo, and incense," says Iya Osundara Ogunsina, a priestess also known as Bruja Banton on social media. "You can use a spiritual bath to also cleanse your body; I think the body gets neglected." 

Both Juju Bae and Iya Osundara stress that the creation and use of spiritual baths as a cleansing ritual is not restricted to adherents of any specific traditional religious practices. "[Spiritual baths] can actually just be [taken in] regular water that you pray over," Juju Bae says, adding that you can also infuse the water with herbs and other ingredients to amplify whatever intention you have for the bath. Similar to Iya Osundara, Juju Bae also takes spiritual baths frequently. 

photo of a woman standing under a watering can water is being poured on her se is surrounded by rosesIllustration by Clara Hendler

The ritual of placing intentions into the water as a cleansing step is also reflected in a variety of expressions of Abrahamic religion. In many traditional Baptist sects, including majority Black congregations in the American South, baptism isn't historically perceived as merely a sprinkling of water on someone's forehead, but a full submersion in a body of water such as a river to cleanse one of their sins. "I know some old-school churches that still take people out to lakes, ponds, rivers, and oceans, dunking them fully in the all-whites," Juju Bae emphasizes.

This also extends to classical African-American spirituals, which are frequently infused with significant references to water and its power. The familiar lyrics to "Wade In the Water," for example, are enmeshed with multiple subtle references to water as a cleansing and liberating space, not just biblically, but as a cue for slaves to communicate with each other as they sought an escape to freedom. Take the line, "God's gonna trouble the water." As Howard Thurman, former dean of the chapel at Howard University expresses in his book Deep River and the Negro Spiritual Speaks of Life and Death, "For [the slaves] the 'troubled waters' meant the ups and downs, the vicissitudes of life. Within the context of the 'troubled' waters of life, there are healing waters, because God is in the midst of the turmoil." The song is a heuristic that has persisted throughout the centuries as a means of survival and a search for mercy.

The Deeper Significance of Bathing Rituals

As a diviner and Olorisa (a priestess of the Orisa practice) initiated to Osun, Iya Osundara sells spiritual baths at her website, Iyalode's corner, providing her community with a variety of spiritual aids to promote cleansing, protection, prosperity, and clarity. "[Spiritual cleansing is] something that my (spiritual) Godmother has taught us to do as a way to just keep up your own hygiene practice," Osundara says. Since her initiation into Osun in 2019, she takes a spiritual bath every week.

"My relationship to water is primarily because of my ancestors' relationship to water through church through baptism, but also through the Transatlantic slave trade," Juju Bae explains. "I have ancestors who decided to jump off of ships in the water and their spirits still live there, their memories still live there, their bodies still live there." That connection is a complicated mélange of trauma and healing.

These themes are also represented in one of the defining moments of contemporary Black pop culture: Beyoncé's visual album Lemonade, released in 2016. Water is a powerful supporting character, whose presence is infused throughout the project. At the beginning of the film, Beyoncé is submerged in water and grief. A few minutes later, she triumphantly opens the door to a cathedral in a beaming yellow dress, water rushing onto the front steps in her stead, later smashing a hydrant and luxuriating in its bursting wells of hydration.

woman sitting in a bathtub she is surrounded by rosesIllustration by Clara Hendler

The contemporary conversation over cleansing is essential to parsing out the many ways in which white supremacy affects our interactions. At a more comprehensive level, however, the acknowledgment of the essentiality of water is not restricted to a performance or a rebuttal to stereotypes associated with Black and other nonwhite communities. Water, for many, expresses spiritual decontamination, salvation, self-care, and survival. It is the ultimate life force that compels consistent acknowledgment and consumption, both internally and externally. Hygiene has been intertwined with Black traditions even in the direst of circumstances, and that anchored reverence is a genetic imprint that no pop culture trend can divorce us from.