justina x danny | interview

a danny in the wild

 Usually I find art and then become interested in the person who made it. With my new homie Danny, it was the other way around. I stumbled across his Instagram, and immediately wanted to know about this boy with the fluffy hair, insane nature photos, and propensity for cuddling with cats. I got him on skype, and we talked about the internet, eyebrows, and what I haven't done since I was eleven.

Justina:  Do you have a favorite hashtag?
Danny: Honestly I don't really use hashtags - lately just the #Suedeponytail one.
Well that's a perfect segue to the next question - what's up with the ponytail thing? There's no story behind it?
There isn't! I just really like ponytails.
 I was going to get ~involved~ and try to do a ponytail and then I realized that I'd kind of look like Sonic the Hedgehog.
Hey, that could have been cool. 
Other people get really into it! They love you on twitter, and then yesterday I swear I got off and came back and your twitter drama had gone through the roof. Does that happen a lot?
Not a lot, maybe just like...every two weeks? 
And that's not a lot?
Not really. I think - people meet me in person, and they think "oh he's a nice guy", and you know, I'm not on Twitter sometimes. I'm not mean, but it's not how I am in real life at all. It's all easier when you're sitting on one side of a screen. You're trying to be someone, you've got to play the part. Act cooler than you are, you know?
It gets pretty intense, there are people saying some nasty stuff.
I know, it's not usually that bad but..whatever. I mean, I'm doing my thing.
Well now that we've got the light fluffy stuff out of the way, let's get serious: Instagram. Do you have favorite accounts?
Hmm. I follow the account of this guy named Joe Greer and Cory Crawford (@coryacrawford). I met Cory through my band a while ago, and he just goes on these crazy adventures, and his instagram is the coolest. Joe Greer does kind of the same thing - they just adventure and take amazing pictures of the places and people they meet. They're both really classy dudes. Then there's people I just follow because they're my homies. Carlos - he's this dude I just met on tour, he's probably the coolest human I've ever met and he's doing the same thing, just taking photos of his travels, sneaking into abandoned buildings and stuff.
You take some pretty amazing photos yourself - what does your editing process look like? Or are they just come-as-you-are?
Well on tour I usually take the photos with my camera, then use the wifi to connect it to my phone, edit it in the photoshop app, then post it. Usually. Otherwise, I'll put them on my computer, edit them with Lightroom or Photoshop, and Dropbox them to myself. It just depends. 
If you could go photograph on tour with anyone, who would it b-
Reliant K.
Yes. They were my first concert in like the eight grade. I did three weeks in public school, came home and said "I'm never going back" and I didn't. I started online school, and for like three years -my brother had downloaded all their discography ever, so like all their albums, singles, everything - that's all I listened to. Three years. It never got old. I waited three hours after their concert to meet them and get a signature. I have signed drum sticks! Other than that - Five Seconds of Summer, Bieber, anything like that I'd really enjoy, because when I shoot a concert, the thing that will make the photos is the lights.  If there's really good lights, and a lot of them, I can get the coolest pictures out of it. Those massive tours have lights everywhere, it'd be great. Justin Bieber's tours are insane, the stuff they do.
Have you been?
No, my brother and I actually went and saw his second movie on Christmas, and it was awesome.
Well that's a another thing - people seem to skate on your brother (Crown the Empire drummer Benn Suede), but you guys do different stuff.
It's half and half. I'm as well known as I am because of him, he's the one who brought me out on tour. I don't think it's a bad thing. I'd be stupid to be like "Oh I don't want to piggyback off my brothers success, so I'm just not gonna do anything". So it's an opportunity, and I view it as that. We have a great relationship, and it's a perfect situation.
Was there a tour stop where you felt like you took the best photos?
California was just cool - we had a buck of dates, but LA was sick, we ended up having two off days, and we shot a music video, so that was a lot of fun. Other than that, Boston, Houston, New York, those we my favorites.
Do you have a favorite place in LA?
I wouldn't say I have a favorite place, just all the people, artist, musicians. It's just cool. I'm not comfortable in public usually, just in like crowds and stores and stuff, but in LA there's just so many weird people that I don't feel weird about myself. You could be the weirdest person, and you're still normal there, because there's so many people weirder than you. I like that.

Lightning round:
What's the best advice anyone has ever given you?
It wasn't really spoken advice, but just from watching my brother do his thing, he's inspired a lot. If there's something you want to do, just do it, work as hard as you can, be positive, no excuses.
I like that you two work together so well because you do separate things.
 Yeah, we're a really good team.
What is your hair routine like?
Zero. I literally don't do anything. Once in a while I'd man-bun it, but it's too short now.
That's unfair.
My brother is usually in there with like the blowdryer and stuff and I'm just like nah
What's your favorite place in the world?  
I'm a traveler, so I'm all about going everywhere I can go, and seeing everything I can see. Honestly, I probably haven't discovered my favorite place yet. I went to Belize for three weeks, on a mission trip, and fed people and lived with them and that's probably one of my favorite places. Or just on a mountain, with a gorgeous landscape, and the quiet, looking out at creation. That's my favorite place.
You might almost convince me to go camping - I haven't been since I was eleven.
That's sad. That's an outrage.
We have a camper van and everything too. 
See, I have a little hammock and I'm all about that, I just take my little hammock and hang it up, sleep in it. Those are the best places. No cell reception, no people. It's amazing.
You're a pretty positive person. Any Oprah-esque tips?
I used to meditate a lot. I spent a lot of time in my head being chill and just clearing my mind. I used to have a lot of anxiety, and now I have this mentality that whatever's gonna happen is gonna happen, so it's no use worrying about it. I'm gonna be dead one day, and nothings worth not being happy.
Final one: Cheese Its or Goldfish?
Regular cheese its, but flavor blasted Goldfish.
Adventure into Danny's world via instagram  (@danny_suede) and twitter (@danny_suede). You can also order prints of all his work on his website www.suedephotography.com/. 

x J

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in the praise of hair

photos taken with fujifilm x30 | earrings c.o stella & bow

This is just a post for me to spill out a bunch of random thoughts I've been thinking.

1. This is my new favorite hairstyle. I don't know why, but it is.

I have sO MUCH HAIR. I feel like it has honestly doubled, and there was already quite a bit of it. I've only been back at school only one day and already managed to snag it on the back of my desk seat four times. Four. TIMES. My Italian professor thinks it's hilarious. She also thinks my attempts at speaking Italian are hilarious, but that's a story for another time.

2. We've almost made it through a whole month of 2015! YAY US. Someone get a cake.

3. I know I haven't done any outfit posts yet and am a Shame To The Fashion Blogging Nation, but IN MY DEFENSE all I have worn lately is stripes and Dr. Martens, and I'm not in denial about how boring that'll get after a while. I'll make it up in February, promise. Just like you can make up for all the times you've already "forgotten" your new years resolutions. I see you.

4. Lately, I've been getting a lot of emails from you guys and I LOVE it. I love hearing about where you're from, and your prom dress options, and seeing pictures of your pets. Y'all are a pretty legit squad. Except you with the teacup Chihuahua - that's not a real dog.

5. There are so many great things happening that I can't tell you about yet. If it ever seems like I'm half-arsing it, just know that the other half is involved in some cool CIA-level secret stuff.

x J

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new york new york

All photos taken with a Fujifilm X30

Every time I go to new york it gets colder and colder and I don't like it. I do not like it at all.

I WENT TO NEW YORK. I can't tell you what for, but you'll know eventually. Promise. I got to do lots of fun stuff I also can't tell you about yet but hEY PRETTY PHOTOS. Besides re-affirming my hatred of the cold, we learned a few other things:

1. If the pilot decides five minutes from JFK that the runway looks snowy, you'll end up in Philadelphia. 
2. If you tell people you're from California, they''ll immediately get this faraway look in their eyes.
3. Chinese food is closer than you'd think.
4. Times Square doesn't sleep and shopping at 10pm is totally acceptable.
5. Wear your docs everywhere because vans command no respect with angry New Yorkers.
6. "Breakfast" is not a thing people do in NYC.
7. Get to the museum the minute it opens and you have a good half hour to get close to the crowd-pullers.
9. When you get in the taxi, repeat the address twice.
10. Eavesdrop absolutely everywhere, because you'll hear the most interesting things.

Also, if you smile at a New Yorker at 10am the way you would a Californian, 
they will be extremely confused and upset by it. 

x J 

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in action | #action2015

I'm going to talk about two things right now, things that don't fit into the realm of things I usually talk about, but are incredibly important all the same. One is people, and one is food.

This weekend, I was in New York City. We will talk about that and see all the outfit photos and the selfies later. Now, we will talk about the things, or rather, people, who are not photographed. Not talked about. Not smiled at. New York City has one of the largest homeless populations in the country. Everywhere there are people who lost their job, their life, their luck. They're in doorframes and garages. They're adults, and more and more likely- teenagers. For these people, the poverty line is  a cathedral ceiling. Not a glass one, because no one sees them. It's not just NYC either. Here at home, I have volunteered at a food bank during the holidays for the last eight years. It's one of the few things I call a tradition. I spent a flicker of time talking to people, learning about that moment in their life, what brought them. Every year, there are more people, and they're getting younger. This year,  I talked to a 19 year old guy who had been homeless for three years, since he was barely 16, before he got a job, and he told me that this year, he was going to host Thanksgiving for his family with help from the food closet. It would be the first time his family had Thankgiving with a full turkey. I'm not trying to pull heartstrings or tears out of you, and I'm not Gwyneth Paltrow - I just want to share this story, because it's important.

This year, Action/2015, will be working with Save the Children and hundreds of others to get people together in two massive conferences centering on important issues, including poverty. They are using the voice of a generation to tell the world what needs to happen. Kids shouldn't be living on the streets, being ignored. Maybe to make that change, other kids need to say something. We as a generation have so many advantages that we can use to change our world. Not in ten years, or five. This year. Changing now will change the future.

You can follow along with Action/2015 here, and spread the message using the hashtag #Action2015. To learn more about teen homelessness, or if you personally need a little help, click here.

Your mom probably told you to not talk to strangers, and if some dude rolls up in a van he claims is full of puppies, run like the wind. But if a person sitting on a sidewalk with all their possessions makes eye contact, don't pretend they don't exist. Say good morning, smile, compliment their dog. Be a nice human. It might just inspire a change.

x J

ps. full disclaimer: action/2015 reached out to me to talk about their organization with compensation, but this is an issue that has been close to me for years, and my promise to you will always apply.
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save yourself

minimergency kit c.o. pinch provisions

In this post I will single-handedly answer two very important questions.

1. What do two exhausted State Ambassadors look like after three days in Tahoe?


2. Why is Justina always prepared for the moments in life we all wish we were prepared for but never actually are?

To answer number one, see above photos. Sallie was not a willing participant in this photoshoot but she has a Pinch Provisions kit too and I thought ours looked cute together and that we looked cute together and maybe our cuteness could overshadow our sleepy eyes and topknots.

Let me tell you, my little set has never gotten a workout like it did this weekend, and that's how we get to answer number two. The basic premise of Minimergency kits is pure genius: everything you could ever need in a little bag that's smaller than you would ever think possible. It's sort of like Mary Poppin's carpet bag. The only thing that's NOT in it is...um..well, I'm sure I'll come up with something. Maybe. If you want to see EXACTLY what "everything" is, you can click here. I managed to save one knee, three nails, and several conversations. As an extremely life-accident-prone person, I have decided that a kit in every bag is the only way to go, and then just to be safe, made sure everyone else has one to. Hence Sallie. You can also get them for your guy humans, your almost-married humans, and most importantly - your dog. Rex has been on me for ages to get him one.

Speaking of dogs and people who like dogs and are therefore great (smooth. real smooth.) THE GOLDEN GLOBES ARE THIS WEEKEND. I can't watch because I'll be on a plane and planes do not take into consideration important things like Amy & Tina's "last" time hosting the Golden Globes. It's extremely disappointing. You will all have to watch for me and then tweet me any extremely important moments that come up. Also anything involving Matthew McConaughey, as there inevitably will be.

The longer I look at these photos, the more I feel like I need a nap.

x J

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justina + michelle | interview

When you think YouTube, what person comes to mind? If you're one of her 7 bajillion followers, and even if you're not, it's probably Michelle Phan. I'm couldn't name every shade on a Naked palette, but I'm not immune to the powers of the beauty vlogger, and she's the queen.

At the very end of last year, I had the chance to ask her a few questions, and they turned into the first interview of 2015. Read on for a solid what-to-pack list, a moment on video games of the youth, and a serious eyeliner question.

Justina: You wake up in the morning and have fifteen minutes to get ready - what’s the routine look like?

Michelle: If I only have fifteen minutes to get ready, I’ll find ways to take care of multiple things at once. I do this by reading emails and getting a little morning fitness in, like pushups. When it comes to skincare, I like to think ahead. I always keep a cool eye mask in my fridge or have depuffing pads like Skyn Iceland Hydro Cool Firming Eye Gels close by so I can multitask– I get rid of under eye bags while I’m brushing my teeth or doing my hair. Also, I’ll use an all-purpose cleanser like Philosophy Purity for these specific mornings when I can’t spend much time on my full skin care regimen but still want to cleanse, tone and hydrate.

When it comes to my make up, I’ll apply only the basics. Foundation or bb cream, mascara, and lip-gloss will allow for enough coverage to get me out the door without looking like a complete zombie. These three items also even out my skin tone, widen my eyes, and give my lips a blast of moisture and sheen. If I need a bit more color to further brighten and polish my look, I’ll apply when I’m in the car (passenger seat only) or once I get to my destination. I always keep a beauty essential bag in my purse with my favorite shades or eyeliner, lipstick, blush, concealer, and shadow.

Lastly, I embrace a messy mane. I usually prep my hair the night before by braiding it or throwing it into a loose bun. This way when I wake up in the am, I run my fingers through it, toss in some product or dry shampoo and go!

Beauty trends come and go, but is there one you’ve stuck with in your everyday routine? 

 Flawless skin. For me skincare is so important! I use at least six products on my face every night.

You travel a lot for work, which can be harsh on ~mind and body~ - what do you always have on you in carry on? Do you have a “airplane routine”?

Since I do travel frequently, it’s important that I have my pre-flight routine down.
I pack my carry-on bag with goodies that will help the hours pass and prevent me from hauling more bags than necessary onto my next flight. Depending on the duration I might throw a neck pillow and scarf into my bag, but no matter what, I always take the below travel essentials with me.

  • Passport Cover – I use a bright colored cover to protect my identification, and so it’s easily accessible when I’m walking through TSA.
  • Wallet – I pack a large wallet to carry my money, credit cards, and any paperwork or IDs needed. I also use my wallet to hold my phone, preventing it from rolling around loose in my bag.
  • Cosmetic Bag - If I’m meeting that special someone at the airport or I’ve taken an overnight flight, I’ll want to freshen up before getting off the plane. I bring a cute cosmetic bag to carry my beauty essentials. If you need tips on how to get a refreshed glow post-flight, watch my video Travel Friendly In-Flight Beauty Tips!
  • Socks - If I’m wearing sandals or heels, I might struggle with cold feet on the plane, so I pack a pair of socks to warm them up and allow me to better relax sans shoes.
  • Toothbrush – Similar to freshening up your face, I have a toothbrush and toothpaste handy for after I’ve been snacking and/or sleeping on my flight.
  • Eye Mask - Some people will stay awake and let their overhead lights beam throughout the plane on overnight flights. I bring an eye mask to create total darkness and get the rest I deserve!
  • Headphones – So I don’t have to pay for bulky in-flight headphones, I bring my own to listen to music or watch videos.
  • Reading Materials – A good book, a couple of your favorite magazines or an iPad are wonderful to have while flying.
  • Travel Tote – The best travel bag around is a sturdy tote in a neutral color. The neutral tone will go with anything I wear, and the large size will not only carry my must-haves, but also transport my work laptop once my trip is over.
  • Reusable Bags – I use reusable bags for any liquids, snacks, keys, or jewelry I have on my flight. They help keep me organized.
  • Snacks – To avoid overpriced plane food and a grumbly belly, I bring my own favorites to grub on throughout the flight. 

You were one of the OG’s of YouTube - how do you feel like it’s changed since you started?

YouTube has helped developed me as a business person. Now more and more people are turning to YouTube regularly for content and its online niche is well-defined.

Well let’s talk about your work with Nintendo, because that's a new project for you.

I recently teamed up with Nintendo to record videos for a new Nintendo 3DS ad campaign! The portable system allows gamers to play incredible games on the go, with a top screen featuring 3D capabilities and a bottom touch-screen working together for a unique gameplay experience.

Do you have a ~nostalgic Nintendo memory~?

I’ve been a massive Nintendo fan since I was a little girl. It defined my childhood. When I was going through hard times, I turned on my Nintendo console and was transported into another world.

Speaking of another world - lighting round questions:

Important: Cats eye or wingtip eyeliner? Is there even a difference?
I love a cat eye!

I loved your "Daenerys look" video - who is your favorite Game of Thrones character?

Daenerys is actually my favorite character! I love her transformation into a strong leader.

What’s the best career advice you can give in five words?

Have unwavering passion for what you do.

This is usually the part where I'd expound upon how fantastic Michelle is and where to follow her, but you already know and already are, so I'm just going to go practice eyeliner flicks and DS tricks. (couldn't resist)

x J

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did it with a bang || 2014

I predicted everything but Kimye, because no one saw that coming

This is it. The very last day of 2014. I said I wouldn't get emotional....so I won't. 2014 was an amazing year, maybe the best of my 17 years' of existence thus far, full of things that I dreamed of and things I never imagined. A lot of them played out in front of you guys, whether it was here on the blog or captured in a snapchat story. I collected the big moments (that I can tell you about) for this post so we wouldn't forget any of them. Let's start from the start:

1.  FEBRUARY: I went to New York City for the very first time for 24 hours, and it was cold. Really cold. I met Laura Brown, toured Teen Vogue, and ate pizza with gloves on.
2. MARCH: My first award show (awww bby Justina) was a whirlwind of selfies, stopping traffic for Bella Hadid (like she can't do that on her own) and perching precariously.
3. MAY: Prom with the homegirls. This years dresses were even snazzier, and we looked really good in In n Out. Teen Vogue agreed.
4. ALSO MAY: I graduated high school, a year early. Gabrielle made me a very sassy cake.
5. JULY: Germany won the World Cup, and I was psyched because soccer is the only sport I truly understand. You all found out I have a weak grasp of the German language and why that matters.
6. STILL JULY: Stalked celebs in Burbank with Sallie while drinking the best pina colada smoothie I've ever had.
7. AUGUST: Back to my favorite city and the carpets that populate it for the Teen Choice Awards, where I finally met Rebecca in person, selfie'd with anyone who stopped for a millisecond, hijacked the photobooth, and forced Charlie Rowe to re-follow me on Twitter. Josh Hutcherson was also involved.
8. OCTOBER: I turned 17. We skated. My friends are dorks. I love them.
9. ALSO OCTOBER: I was Barbie for Halloween and it was a rousing success, plus my rollerskating skills were finally put to use.
10. NOVEMBER: Katie and I went to Hoodie Allen and it was one of the best decisions of my life. (Future reference: doing anything with Katie is a good idea.)
11. STILL NOVEMBER: The ocean was beautiful and I'm obsessed with this photo. That's all.
12. DECEMBER: Groovy stuff I'm not allowed to tell you about yet but oooh pretty lights

What a wild year. Somewhere in all of that I started college, became a 2014-15 California 4-H State Ambassador, learned some Italian, landed a feature in Barbie magazine, drank a lot of coffee, binged on Game of Thrones, wrote for the New York Times, got a wikipedia page, interviewed some amazing people, made new friends, and generally did my thang. More of you guys showed up, and we had some laughs. (I think. Yes? Maybe.)

 I have one resolution: 2015 will be the year of the Texan proverbs. Go bigger, because going home isn't an option. 

2015 is going to be absolutely insane. Trust me. It's about to get VERY real.

See you on the flip side, don't be late.

x Justina

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who's afraid of the big bad bears

Photos taken by Anouk with a Fujifilm X30


Just needed to announce that. It's officially the last weekend of 2014. I'll get sappy about it on Wednesday.

Arianna and I made the grave mistake of going to the mall (ew) the Monday before Christmas, and the only good thing that came out of it was these fluffy bear hoodies. They're snuggly. We of course then dragged Anouk about to take photos of us and she made some magic.  It was especially impressive considering that both of us looked gross and mall-y.

IT'S THE LAST SUNDAY OF DECEMBER. That means one last giveaway. I decided to give away one more of the most popular prize: a Justina box, filled with little tchotchke's I love.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

As usual, you've got a week to get ya entries in. Don't forget to fill out ALL the boxes, because it makes me extremely sad when I pick a winner and then you didn't actually write your name. Say your name, say your name.

How was everyone's Christmas/Hanukkah/assorted winter festivities? Did you eat loads? I did. I also got a new pink suitcase named Lorinda, who you will be meeting verrrry soon.

*the suspense is set*

x J

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a holly jolly justina

photo taken with fujifilm x30

Merry Christmas homeskillets!

 I hope you all are having an absolutely lovely holiday full of cookies, embarrassing sweaters, 
and too many holiday specials. (if that even exists).
(it doesn't)

See you under the lights, tree,
 and/or poisonous plant we like to hang in door frames this time of year.
x J

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buddha claus // third sunday of december

Dogeared necklace shot with Fujifilm x30


 Buddha says....enter this week's giveaway. I mean, he would. If he could talk. And wasn't tiny. and a necklace. The good news is that because he is, YOU CAN WIN HIM.

(That was probably my best lead-in yet.) 

For the 3RD SUNDAY OF DECEMBER, I am giving away a gold Dogeared Buddha necklace! I am really excited about this one because I wear my Buddha every day, and it's a simple reminder to keep thinkin' about chill things. For this giveaway, the instructions are a little different, so pay close attention. Bonus points are a'jingling.

a Rafflecopter giveaway  

CHRISTMAS IS IN FOUR DAYS OH MY GOSH. Can you beliEVE I haven't even seen Elf ONCE this month? I am a disgrace. My Christmas tree has been up since the turkey cleared on Thanksgiving, and my dad has more lights on our house than Clark Griswold. That's just how we roll. How does your family celebrate? Any special traditions, or - more importantly - recipes?
All I want to do is make ginger bread houses, and eat cookie dough, and go ice skating, and maybe even hold hands. Probably watch Elf a couple dozen times, just to make sure nothings changed.

If Santa somehow lost your list, just remember - if you were really nice this year,  
you might even win a Dogeared necklace.

x J

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