Ask the Edit: Vol. V, No. One

Tights or nylons?  Which travel mug?  And where to find warm (non-snow) winter boots.  These questions and more answered.

Hi Belle,

I often am on the go to meetings and have a long commute. I tend to end up with my travel coffee mug with me. I’m looking to buy a find options that are professional for meetings or site visits.

Best, Stephanie

I don’t think too many people care about your coffee mug unless it says something lewd or inappropriate.  Where that line is, you’ll have to decide for yourself.

If you’re looking for a great travel mug, I like this Bodum plastic and white mug.  This black and white print Kate Spade coffee cup is fun.  I also like these Tervis jewel tumblers; they’re made in America and they’re insulated for use with hot or cold beverages.

P.S. Two commenters and two e-mailers sang the praises of this Zojirushi spill-proof mug, so I thought I’d add it.


My wardrobe is transitioning from all pants to mostly skirts.  I have all the neutral colors covered.  Can you help me find a few pencil skirts in jewel colors or other work-appropriate shades?

Thank you, Jayne

A dark purple skirt can function like a neutral in most wardrobes.  This ponte pencil skirt from Ann Taylor is worth a look.  I also like this $15 jersey pencil skirt from Old Navy.  Plus-size?  Eloquii offers their classic pencil skirt in several colors, including dark purple.

Other colors include, this vibrant green from Boden and this rich dark green from NY&Co.  This Tahari pencil skirt comes in cobalt.  Y’all know how positively I feel about a teal pencil skirt.  And this olive skirt from Banana Republic would be sublime with an ivory sweater.

Hi Belle,

Do you have a favorite wrinkle cream? My crows feet are more noticable than I’d like…  I’m thinking of getting Night Is Young, based on your recommendation. Is it going to help my wrinkles?  PS I can’t use retinol 🙁

Thank you so much and Happy New Year! BN

The only eye cream I’ve ever been truly impressed with — as in impressed enough to spend $60 a throw on it — was this Estee Lauder Advanced Night eye cream.  It doesn’t say that it has retinol in it, but there are so many chemical names for the same thing, I would double check.  If it does, the other option is this Ole Henriksen Banana Bright Eye Cream.

To boost the effectiveness of any eye cream, I highly recommend the GloPro derma roller.  I stopped using it for a couple of weeks (sick = lazy), and boy, did I notice.  Immediately picked that baby up again.  You can also buy a cheaper one without the bells and whistles.  It ensures deep penetration of serum.

Hi Belle,

I’m 35 years old and put away my Uggs years ago, but this crazy cold DC weather has left me regretting that decision. Do you have a recommendation for a more grown up cold weather boot? I don’t need boots for when it’s actually raining/snowing – that’s covered (I wear my Hunters). I just need something to wear when it’s COLD for the commute and for knocking around on the weekend.

Appreciate the help! KAS

If I’m understanding you, you’re looking for a casual, warm boot for chilly (not wet) weather.  And I’m guessing you don’t want to pay Aquatalia prices.

For warmth, I’ve seen these Nordic boots from J.Crew on about 100 bloggers.  Sorel also makes a winter boot that looks like riding boot.  Ugg also makes a tall boot that’s lined with sheepskin but doesn’t look like it’s Ugg-ly breathren.


I hope you are staying warm! I need your help regarding a white party I’ve been invited to on MLK weekend. I have a cocktail dress that will work, but am stumped regarding nylons and shoes. The micro fishnet nudes you used to recommend are no longer available. Is there another pair you’d recommend? I can’t go bare legs this time of year. What shoes are appropriate? For a bonus question, what should a guy wear to a white party? We are clueless. Please help!

– Lisa 

I would go with a super opaque black tight and a black shoe.  White and black almost always go together so that should be a fine choice.  To make the outfit work, try a black sash belt, a pair of black chandelier earrings or a black statement necklace with your dress.

Does this technically break the all-white rules?  Maybe, but who has a white party in January?  If you’re not comfortable with it, wear a pair of sheer nylons and whichever heels in your closet you think look best.

Need tights?  These Falke tights have a plush knitting for added warmth and are super dark.

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  1. Heather says:

    I really like the Zojirushi Stainless travel mugs. They come in a variety of colors, I’ve found them to be incredibly leakproof, and they keep hot drinks very hot (I recommend letting your drink cool to the temperature you’d like to drink it at before putting it into the mug because it really does retain heat).

    January 11, 2018/Reply
    • Regina says:

      Jinks! lol

      January 11, 2018/Reply
    • Colleen says:

      I like the Yeti travel mugs. My mom gave me one last year after I had my son and it has been a lifesaver. My coffee stays hot literally all day. Over the summer I left it in my car with the dregs of an iced coffee and there were still ice cubes in it the next day.

      January 11, 2018/Reply
    • kate says:

      There is no comparison to Zojirushi. In fact, they’re probably too good. I have more than once made tea and taken it to the office only to forget about it until mid-afternoon. I open the lid and it’s just about exactly as hot as it was when I put the lid on at 7:30 AM.

      January 13, 2018/Reply
  2. Regina says:

    For the question about a travel mug – I swear by the Zojirushi travel mug (available on Amazon). It absolutely will not leak, so I don’t have to worry about tossing it in my bag – full or not.

    January 11, 2018/Reply
    • TheLOOP says:

      They are the best. Keep coffee piping hot for ever!

      January 12, 2018/Reply
  3. Sarah K says:

    I second checking out the non-traditional UGG boots – I bought the Chaney (moto style, water resistant leather, wool lining) on sale last year, and wear them all the time. They’re cute, keep my feet super warm, and are great for slushy sidewalks!

    January 11, 2018/Reply
  4. anna says:

    “Who has a white party in January?”….this was my thought exactly when I read the question.

    January 11, 2018/Reply
    • Tif says:

      In addition, who has a white party on MLK weekend?!

      January 12, 2018/Reply
      • Mel says:

        That was my first thought.

        January 12, 2018/Reply
      • Clar says:


        January 12, 2018/Reply
  5. CaitLyn says:

    My husband and I both have that Zojirushi mug and it is awesome! I think mine is the 10oz and his is 20oz. Keeps our coffee really warm until the afternoon. Highly recommend!

    January 11, 2018/Reply
  6. Jenn S. says:

    Chiming in with another endorsement of the Zojirushi mug. I’ve had it keep coffee HOT for 12 hours and drinkably warm for 24. My husband has one too; he accidentally dropped his once, nary a scratch or break. Furthermore, cleaning is a breeze; normally I hate mugs with complicated lid/mouthpieces but this one totally comes apart for thorough cleaning (and reassembles effortlessly).

    They’re reasonably chic too – I have a champagne gold one – very pretty!

    January 11, 2018/Reply
  7. M says:

    Re: warm boots — I have poor circulation in my hands and feet (always cold!) and Aquatalia boots have been so worth it for me. I’ve had mine for almost two years and they’re wearing like iron—and I’m not easy on shoes.

    January 11, 2018/Reply
  8. Mila says:

    My brother, sister, and husband all swear by the Hydro Flask coffee tumblers for their work commutes. The tumblers are incredibly durable and come in a variety of colors and sizes, too.

    January 11, 2018/Reply
  9. S says:

    Another vote for the Zojirushi travel coffee mug– It keeps coffee hot for HOURS and doesn’t leak. Plus it’s pretty. After years of buying my coffee in the morning, I now it bring it from home, thanks in large part to this mug.

    January 11, 2018/Reply
  10. jbindc says:

    Another mug option: Contigo! They lock so you can put them in your bag without fear of leaking, then unlock when you are ready to drink it in your meeting. They are easy to clean and ~$20. We have 4 that we rotate and love them.

    January 12, 2018/Reply