Style + Ask the Edit

Ask the Edit Vol IV, No. Forty

This week’s reader questions include advice on end-of-year-bonus jewelry, velvet booties, dry skin solutions, slim wallets, and more…

Hi Belle,

I recently purchased the Dagne Dover Clutch Wallet, which I love.  However, I’m looking for a slim checkbook-sized wallet/insert/case to hold my extra cards and keep in one of the side zips. I found this Henri Bendel banklet, which checks all the boxes from a functional standpoint (right shape/size, doesn’t fold over/snap, good quality).  But it’s a bit more than I’d like to spend and I’m not crazy about their listed color options.  I would so appreciate your help as my style is similar to yours.

Thank you, S

If you’re looking for a slim wallet, Target has a similar offering in gold.  DvF offers this silver one for half the price of the Henri Bendel.   Lodis also has a slim card holder for sale.

Personally, I switched over to a small credit card holder and I’ve never been happier.  Sometimes, I just put it in my pocket and leave my purse at home.  It’s very freeing to learn to live with less.


I just moved to the Midwest and my face is so dry all the time. I use a daily lotion but it just doesn’t cut it. Do you have a favorite moisturizing face mask?

Thanks! MC

I really like the $13 Tony Moly Banana Sleeping Pack for a surge of moisture.  Saturday Skin also makes an intensive hydrating mask that comes highly reviewed.


Between scarves, zipping my winter coat all the way up, and wearing big chunky turtlenecks, in combination with horribly dry skin and thus using a heavier moisturizer, I always seem to get breakouts in the winter along my jawline. I don’t typically have acne-prone skin. I was fully bundled on my commute to work today and could feel my jawline-pores suffocating, but it’s too cold not to bundle! Any recommendations on how to either avoid or combat this winter acne?

– DG 

First, you need to be exfoliating.  I recommend using either a scrub or an AHA/BHA exfoliating toner.  I like Formula 10 Smooth Operator scrub; it uses tiny pumice particles.  If you would rather use a chemical exfoliator, a lot of readers recommend this Paula’s Choice BHA Skin Perfecter.

To treat the acne you have now, I recommend Cosrx Whitehead Power Liquid and their blemish reducing patches. The patches shrink deep acne like a dream.

Hi Belle,

I’m looking for a new planner for 2018.  I’d like something that costs under-$60.  It needs to be pretty and functional.  Can you help me find one that isn’t boring?


This year, I bought the Russell + Hazel marble planner (set of 2 $20).  You fill it with the pages of your choice from filler paper to calendars.  You can also buy a pre-filled one for $24.

I also like this Anthropologie planner for $30 and this very minimalist planner from Kikki.k for $60.


I’m on the hunt for velvet boots for my Mom’s holiday dinner.  I’m not particular on color, but I need them to cost under $150.  

Sincerely, Charly

These navy Marc Fisher booties would look great with jeans.  These bright raspberry booties and embellished pink bootie are a lot of fun.  For something with a stiletto heel, I love these Ted Baker booties with a sophisticated bow accent.


It’s year-end bonus time and I’ve been delivered a larger check than expected – a pleasant surprise, to say the least! Each year I allocate a percentage of my bonus to treat myself with a little something. This year, I’m thinking jewelry.  However, I’ve never bought myself jewelry above the $200 category so I’m not sure where to look for simple, well-made pieces. David Yurman? Tiffany?  Mall jeweler?

My budget is in the $1,000-$1,500 range and I’m a stud earring/stackable ring-kinda lady, so I’m looking for a nice ring or another option to my everyday pearl studs. Any suggestions for brands or stores would be appreciated!

Thank you! KM

First off, no mall jewelers.  This VICE article provides an overview of jeweler tricks and some tips for buying good stuff at a reputable local shop.

As for jewelry in your price range, there are a lot of wonderful pieces in the $1,000 to $1,500 range.  If you like simple, impactful jewelry, I’d try EF Collection, their X-ring is a classic.  Suzanne Kalan is another hot designer to check out.  I like the avant garde design her 18k gold band and her unique diamond earrings.

My jewelry splurge of choice is David Yurman.  In your price range, this long chain link necklace is chic.  This Stax ring in different textures is cool, so is their Belmont link ring.

Hi Abra,

I keep seeing online ads for those magnetic false eyelashes.  I’m thinking of getting them for a few of my girlfriends for Christmas.  Have you ever tried them?  Do you recommend a particular brand?

Thanks, Meg

Don’t bother.  They’re a complete scam.

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  1. KLC says:


    Check you youtube videos re: those magnetic eyelashes. They are a COMPLETE waste of money and look hideous! Best to invest time in learning how to apply regular falsies in my opinion.

    December 20, 2017/Reply
  2. Molly says:

    re: bundle-induced acne, also make sure you’re washing your scarfs, jacket, etc. regularly – and cell phones can also be a culprit for jawline acne.

    (for what it’s worth, that’s also where a lot of my stress-driven acne hits, so it may be holiday stress/hormone driven rather than weather related).

    December 20, 2017/Reply
  3. CM says:

    MC – I have had awesome winter moisturizing results from Beautycounter’s Cleansing Balm ( Yes, it’s expensive…but it lasts literally forever because you only use a pea-sized amount at a time. I guess it was designed as a cleanser, but it’s best used (in my opinion) as an overnight “sleep mask”. You can use it on cracked winter fingers too. Feels oily at first, but then it absorbs and feels nice. The best is how soft your skin feels when you’re washing in the morning. And no, I’m not a BC consultant, nor do I partner with them in any way. I’ve been satisfied with some of their products more than others, but this one is a keeper…and you can feel good about the safe ingredients. I’ve had mine since May and am only about 1/3 of the way through it so far.

    December 20, 2017/Reply
    • Jennifer says:

      Beauty Counter is a scam IMO. They are over-priced and not based on scientific results (UNLIKE what they advertise). Check out Beauty Counter reviews on Beautypedia here:
      Beautypedia provides reliable and research-based reviews of skincare and makeup companies. They even reference white papers (real science) in their reviews.
      Beauty Counter is just the new version of Avon and falsely sales the “girl power” culture and “GMO/healthy/let’s be green” craze to naive women which upsets me. Its not real feminism and its not really health conscious or “green”. Its a scam.

      December 20, 2017/Reply
    • Jennifer says:

      Additionally, here’s the review of the BC cleansing balm….

      Sorry to be frank, but BC is a total complete fraud…as are a lot of beauty companies, but few of them reach as far as BC in order to sell false feminism.

      December 20, 2017/Reply
  4. Jo says:

    Long time reader – first time commenting. Here just to say that my mom bought me the magnetic false lashes and they actually look awesome once you get the application down! She bought me two pairs – one that is a really lush, full pair that is supposed to go across your entire eyelid – those look ridiculous and I NEVER wear them. The other set is probably about 2/3 or the length of the eyelid and starts with regular length lashes that blend in really well, then just has longer ones towards the outer ends. I wear them only for evening occasions and my girlfriends all rave about how good they look. Of course YMMV if you have difficulty getting them to lie nicely against your lash line! It took me a while before I felt comfortable with how they looked.

    December 20, 2017/Reply
    • Belle says:

      The pair I bought were the full length, maybe that was the problem. But I couldn’t stop blinking.

      December 20, 2017/Reply
  5. Siri says:

    Have you tried the Dr. Jart+ Ceramidin line? The ceramidin liquid followed by the ceramidin cream (or even just your normal moisturizer) is a game-changer, even though it doesn’t feel like it should be. Definitely still also use a sleeping mask though (I like the Dr. Jart+ water fuse hydro one). I had no idea what to do when I moved to the Midwest and that combination literally saved my skin.

    December 20, 2017/Reply
  6. Andrea says:

    KM – For gorgeou, artisan jewelry, check out the website for The Clay Pot, They have two stores in NYC and a lot of jewelry on their website, and looking through their site can give you an idea of designers you want to explore more (The Clay Pot does not show a designer’s full line on their site). I’ve found most mid-sized cities or larger will have a store like The Clay Pot that carries at least some of the same (or similar) designers, and a lot of these designers have a “search for stores” feature on their site allowing you to figure out that store(s) in your city. Also, signing up for The Clay Pot emails will get you emails about occasional sales of 10% off or more.

    December 20, 2017/Reply
  7. Sarah says:

    I am loving the peter Thomas Roth water drench for keeping my skin hydrated, and my yearly splurge on the Erin condren planner.

    December 20, 2017/Reply