Sun Sensible Day at the Beach

Nothing can quite cheer me up like a day with my family.   True, I am set in my sun sensible ways!  But it doesn’t mean I can’t spend a perfect day at the beach with my boys.  I just have to take extra steps to protect myself from UV rays.

On my most recent visit to the beach, I wore a white scallop rashguard and bora bora fringe tulip swim shorts from Cabana Life. The crisp white rashguard goes perfectly with the shorts. These are my go-to bottoms.  With their comfortable waistband, fringe hem and tulip openings, they are just perfect for a day at the beach. They also add a pop of color to the outfit. Both pieces have a 50+  UPF for maximum sun protection.

Cabana Life is one of my favorite companies. They have a bunch of stylish 50+ UPF outfits for children and adults alike. They have dresses, swimming suits, pants and even hats.

Speaking of hats, they always manage to make an outfit chicer.  This time I went with a stylish white hat from Sensi Studios.  This Classic Panama hat is hand-woven by indigenous artisans from The Andes before being pressed, and its brim ironed.  It is made of torquilla palms which are known for being flexible yet durable. This design is trimmed using a black grosgrain band and is very light.  I almost forgot I was wearing a hat!

A beach outfit is never complete without sunglasses. I went with bright pink shades from Italia Independent.  I just couldn’t help myself.   This color is perfect for the beach, and these frames feel like velvet to the touch.

Finally, I carried all my beach necessities in a large navy ticking striped canvas bag.  This bag is not only stylish but also fits perfectly flat in my suitcase making it easy to pack.  If you are planning a day at the beach, this could come in handy.

It’s important to note:

Avoid hanging out at the beach from 10 AM to 4 PM, when the UV rays are most dangerous. Instead, take a dip before or after those hours. Not only does your skin bask in less damaging light and heat, but you also get to enjoy the horizon during the golden hours.

Beach SPF

My Take on Long Sleeve Dresses for Warm Weather

As you may have noticed from my outfits in this blog, dressing for sun-protection calls for a very specific type of maxi dress: the ones with long sleeves. I own a lot of these dresses because they’re the only ones that offer maximum coverage, but not everyone can appreciate the fashion proportions at first.

I understand this whole issue with fashion proportions. For those who aren’t aware, there’s a theory that goes, if you’re wearing a long-sleeved top, keep your bottoms short. Similarly, if you’re wearing a top that bares more skin, like sleeveless tops, then longer bottoms work better.

This is obviously not an option with me, but I’d love to dispel the whole theory that being effectively stylish lies in proportions—not always! Being stylish also lies in beautiful prints, silhouettes, and fabrics. So when I dress for maximum coverage, I like to keep these other aspects of clothing in mind. The more tasteful the rendering of these other details of clothing are, the more stylish and sophisticated the overall outfit is.

Case in point is this Emilio Pucci long-sleeved, printed silk maxi dress. I love how soft and cool the silk is against the skin—this fabric is moderately effective in protecting the skin from UV rays, and when it’s paired with a layer of sun screen underneath, it becomes excellent for sun protection. Silk also lends flow and lightness to the dress, so it holds some shape but also billows slightly around the body—it’s the dreamiest kind of dress for summertime.

A silky belt is tied around the waist to cinch it and keep it in shape. There’s also a slit on the front part of the dress, which provides good ventilation and shows off a bit of leg. The flowy silhouette and the print makes the dress festive enough for a daytime event, like an outdoor lunch.

I paired this dress with Jimmy Choo Viola suede tassel heels, which are undoubtedly glamorous. The taupe color makes it muted enough to go with the funky print of the dress, but the tassel embellishment makes the heels stunning enough on their own. These babies can transition from an outdoor lunch to a black-tie event!

Walk in the soft warmth of the sun

There is a time of the day when the sun isn’t as active and I can go out to enjoy its golden glow. Forty-five minutes before the sun sinks and the evening begins, UV ratings are at their lowest, and the light is friendlier to the skin. During this time, I grab the opportunity for a walk outside and bask in the soft warmth of the sun.

This walk along the beach with my family is one such time. Here, I wore a casual tank top with a long, flowy maxi wrap for extra cover. Darker fabrics actually let in less UV, and so this one is just fitting. I accessorized minimally to keep it easy. One is this gold cuff, which adds a touch of edge, and another is a fedora hat with a black bow detail, which lends a bit of drama to the outfit. Hats are another stylish accessory that helps protect from the sun, and these days, they can be worn in places other than the beach. I could talk about that some time.

Spending time at the beach, however, also means having to run the risk of getting sunburns.  While the rest of my family isn’t as strict as I am about sun protection, they still like to take extra precautions and stick to general rules that make them avoid UV rays as much as possible. Some of those that we swear by are these:

Create an agenda to avoid the midday sun—which is when it’s most harmful—by doing activities indoors. In such cases where outdoor activities are inevitable, try to prevent sunburn by seeking shade under a tree, a pop-up tent, or simply by using an umbrella.

Covering up the arms and legs—perhaps with a long-sleeved t-shirt, or pants, or maxi skirts—also help. This way, your clothes absorb UV rays and less of them penetrate your skin. Accessories like hats are great for shading the area of the face, as I mentioned earlier. There are, in fact, a variety of styles available that can cover everything from the scalp to the neck.

Putting on sunscreen, of course, is a general sun-protection tip that I do believe everyone must go by, including children. Anything with at least SPF 15, plus UVA and UVB protection are most recommended.


_MG_0721_Retouch_v1.01_vis01 (1)

_MG_0698_Retouch_v1.01_vis01 (1)

_MG_0716_Retouch_v1.01_vis01 (1)


Pom Poms and SPF

Saint Barth, Summer Hats, Pom Poms…OH MY! You heard right, cheerleaders aren’t the only ones that can rock the pom poms!  My recent vacation to Saint Barth was completely magical: the warm sand in my toes, the fascinating views, spending quality time with my family, and enjoying nature in style.

The only struggle with packing for an exotic vacation is you always want to pack your absolute favorites! For this trip- that’s exactly what I did.   I could not leave home without my favorite summer item.  I made this navy dress that I am wearing in the photo.  It is  so light and flattering on my figure, and it is made out of breathable UPF 50+ fabric!   This dress became an easy solution for when I am in a hurry – I just put it on for an instant sun protection.  It also  looks summer friendly while hiding me from those unfriendly rays.   I must have worn it a thousand times since I put a last stitch in it!  I really want to make more of these dresses before summer comes:)

I paired my dress with color-friendly shoes by Elina Linardak.  These Pom Pom sandals were so playful, I thought I was a kid on the playground again. I completed the look with spirit-filled summer hat with the matching pom poms! I love how this hat brought my outfit together, from the details in the texture, to the added pom poms placed in the center of the hat. Not to mention, this hat was chic and provided great coverage from my outtings in the sun.

No summer outfit is complete with out a pair of polarized sunnies. These sunshades set the entire mood for my outfit. With the rounded cat eye shape of the frame, it embodies some edgy characteristics- but also keeps the outfit looking sleek and summer friendly. This style of sunglasses can really transform an outfit.

If you are planning a family vacation, or just a simple park stroll with your family, you can always look trendy, and stay safe from the sun beat downs.  I have learned that the sun will not get the best of me, and I can always find fashionable alternatives to create a fabulous outfit.   What are your favorite summer outfits, or what do you like pairing your favorite summer dress with?



Pom Pom Sandals and Hat SPF

Day Time Beach Party

During our last trip to St. Barth we were invited to a private picnic lunch on Colombier Beach.  This beloved beach can only be reached by a hiking trail or by boat.  The invitation indicated a 12 p.m. docking time.  I was very apprehensive  about going because this event was taking place in the middle of the day when UV ratings are at the highest.  However, the picnic was set to celebrate my good friend’s birthday, and I did not want to miss the fun because of my need to avoid sun.   So I vigorously covered myself with sunblock, put on this 50+SPF swimsuit, donned a wide brim straw hat and got on that yacht.

As we anchored off of Colombier Beach and I saw the prestine white sand, gorgeous clear water and a flowing white tent set up, I was overwhelmed with happiness.  This beach was ideal for swimming and snorkeling.  My boys spent the entire afternoon in the water while I enjoyed a fantastic lunch and live music in the shade.  This day turned out to be one of the most memorable experiences and I was proud that on that morning I refused to let melanoma alter my life.

On this day I wore gorgeous Tomas Maier Palm-print long-sleeve swimsuit paired with James Perse Linen Trousers.  I finished the look with Eric Javits wide brim floppy hat.  Eric Javits has become my favorite hat designer.  His hats block 95% of UVA and UVB rays while adding a cool edge to any wardrobe.







The Mad-Hatter

Well, this is no Alice in Wonderland, but summertime is approaching which means: HATS HATS HATS!! The most essential accessory to have during the summertime is a trendy hat. Not only can hats really transform a bland outfit, but they are very protective from sun rays and harsh heat, while you are undergoing your outdoor activities. I have picked out a few of my favorites hats that I will be wearing during the heat season, and their benefits when it comes to your skin protection! Enjoy, and make sure you let me know which one is your favorite!

Baseball Cap

Baseball Caps for women’s fashion is on the come up. I remember when you only would wear a baseball cap for a bad hair day. Boy have times changed! Most women wear baseball caps to simplify their outfit, or for a quick run into Target. They are becoming very popular to wear with cuffed jeans and a plain white tee! With the wide brim visor on baseball hats, it will protect you from the direct hit of the sun.


Yee-haw! This stylish new trend is taking a turn! Are you going to a country concert anytime soon? Or are you just going to the park with your kids? Style it up with a Cowboy hat that can set off any romper, or any simple outfit! Just like the baseball cap, the wide brim will definitely protect you from the sun, and also will protect your back if you are wearing a strapless/tank top outfit! Let the summertime fun begin!


Ladies! This is my ultimate favorite!! With Fedoras you can pair them with any outfit- year round! They are no longer considered a summer hat. I am obsessed with this fashion accessory, and I am so glad that you can wear Fedoras with almost anything and everything.Fedoras can really be the game changer with your outfit: you can be flirty, sophisticated, or casual. Fedoras come in all sizes and shapes, but the most common design you should consider purchasing would be a hat with a wide brim. The wide brim prevents harsh rays from outdoor activities, and they also can help protect your facial features.


Let’s take a trip to Panama, with this super chic Panama Hat! It is described to be a shorter version of the Fedora, but more of a stiff brim. The Panama hat has the same added benefits as the Fedora. Going out for a girls dinner, or maybe going wine tasting? This is the hat for you. It is very simple, but still adds a bonus of texture and style to your overall outfit.

Straw Hats

Working in the garden? Sitting on the porch all day long? Or going on a simple stroll through the park! This hat screams, PICK ME! Like most of these hats the wide brim adds extra support to your protection from the sun. Make sure with these hats you are also wearing sunscreen on your cheeks and chin, due to the fact that the UV rays can still slip through the fibers!


Serena Williams you have competition! The visor, also known as the tennis hat, is such an added bonus to protecting your face from the harsh rays. Why do you think all tennis players wear these hats all day long! While they are trying to beat their opponents, they are also trying to hide away from sun. Visors have the widest front brim out of all the hats described today, so your entire face will be protected, while you are being stylish.


Turban hats are a new style that just evolved around 2014-2015. Not only does it keep your hair out of your face, but it also absorbs the sweat and the sun rays coming directly onto your head. When I think of Turbans, I automatically think of the fashion sleek items that Elizabeth Taylor would wear. Absolutely gorgeous! Even though they do not completely protect your body from the sun, you are still getting more added protection than not wearing a hat.

Boater Hats

This style is something that I was recently introduced too. They are super comfortable, and also provide you with almost a nautical feel! You can pair this cute essential with a nice romper, or dark denim jeans with a white tee for a more comfortable look! Even though boater hats are not as protective as some of the other options, it will still protect the top of your head from the UV Rays!

Bucket Hat

What are bucket hats? I consider them the trendy fishing hat! I have seen this style transform from the “Dad Hat” to seeing women wearing these at concerts. The lightweight material can absorb sweat, as well as, protect you. Because these hats have a lightweight brim, you can easily adjust it to your style preference. My favorite are the summer colors that you can wear while you are out on the beach!

Floppy Hat

THE WINNER! This hat is the winner of all hats- when it comes to protection from the sun. With the extremely wide and flexible full coverage brim, the sun does not stand a chance. I normally choose to wear this hat when I know I will be on the beach for extended periods of time. With the extremely wide brim on these hats, it can almost protect your skin to around your waistline! That is incredible, and extra helpful when you are spending those long hours in the sun. This hat will provide you with a very stylish and sophisticated look with any outfit. The bigger the hat, the more the compliments!

Day On the Boat

Most of us who have ever been on a diet would be familiar of the fear instigated upon intake of particular food groups, and the lengths we would probably take just so we could avoid particular foods. To be honest with you, I can say the same for my fear of being out in the sun. When we were invited to cruise around Miami on a boat that belonged to our dear friends, this fear initially jogged through my decision to go, tucking me in and holding me back from joining. There’s the image of the ocean spread before my eyes, and then there’s the sun’s rays drinking up my skin. And I thought, maybe not.

But maybe yes, too—because ultimately that’s now how things should be. You see, fearing and hiding from the sun isn’t a bad thing. But it becomes a real issue when you let it control your lifestyle—and that’s something you definitely don’t need happening. It’s you, really, who needs to take control. Sun protection is about adjustments to sun exposure, and that’s something you can definitely work on with fashionable clothing and daytime schedules.

For the boat ride, I wore a long-sleeved, printed rashguard surf suit from Mara Hoffman, and a long skirt for maximum coverage. To accessorize, I chose this pair of Illesteva Mirrored sunglasses and my favorite baseball hat—it made up for a cool, carefree look in all. I ducked under shaded areas of the boat when the sun was at its midday peak, but definitely went out once the rays were a lot less harsh.

Needless to say, I was very happy that I went—very happy that I exchanged my fear for a warm, lovely day with close friends. We spent a day cruising around vibrant Miami; at one point, even swimming in a canal where dolphins were swimming, too. We docked, and sat down to the most amazing crawfish lunch on the boat, making happy chitchat over our plates. And then much later in the day, we cruised into the sunset and wound down.





Mara Hoffman

Free In St. Barth

Illesteva Sunglasses



Safari Chic Jumpsuits

It would be an understatement to say I love jumpsuits. If I have to pare my wardrobe down to 10 key pieces—factoring in my sense of fashion and concern for sun protection—jumpsuits will definitely be in there. They’ve got style and function rolled into one: providing maximum coverage while lending sophistication to your overall get-up while requiring very little styling effort.

With the sunny days just around the corner, you will definitely spot me wearing one of these full-length pieces. Because why not? They give you that much-coveted, effortlessly chic look. This one that I wore is a Safari-inspired jumpsuit from Ralph Lauren.  It’s made of satin finish silk, which is said to have infallible UV protection and can help withstand the scorching island weather. Not to mention, the satin silk is soft on the skin.

You can expect this jumpsuit to provide ease of movement with its loose and light fitting, too. And for a day out and about, I’d require nothing less for an outfit.

Just as a dress is not style on its own, jumpsuits need a little work, too. I sprinkled a little color toe the soft nude hue of my jumpsuit with my wrist bangle. My Sensi Studio fedora hat has beaded details that added a little playfulness, too. Then I put on sunglasses to finish the outfit off with.

Safari Jumpsuit with illesteva Sunglasses


Safari Chic Jumpsui paired with Hat for SPF