ALLY FASHION: TESTING THE PLUS SIZE RANGE, YOU + ALL

I’m always really excited when I see brands expanding into plus size lines, especially when they’re an affordable retailer like Ally! A stalwart of the Australian fast-fashion scene over the last two decades (can you believe they’ve been around since 2001?!), in September 2018 they announced that they were releasing a new line ‘You + All’ to cater to sizes 16-22, where previously they only carried up to a size 16, and a pretty small 16 at that!

I’ve made two orders since the collection launched in late 2018, and have a made an effort to try most items they carry, including tops, dresses, jumpsuits, skirts, shorts and trousers! Let’s take a look at photos first, then I’ll run you through my pros and cons at the end of the post.

Outfit 1

Get Me Home Frill Sleeve Bandeau (Size 22)
Taurus Tortoiseshell Buckle Pants (Mustard) (Size 22)

I love how this outfit looks, I actually ended up buying both pieces because this is how they styled it on the model on the website. Both the top and pants are a loose and comfortable fit in a Size 22, but you can see in the first picture that the buckle part of the pants is a bit off. It ends up twisting as you wear it, so I think I’ll take off the buckle part and just tie the sash around my waist. (Unless I can think of a way to sew it flat!)

Outfit 2

Isabella Button-Front Cami (White) (Size 22)
Up All Night Double-Layer Shorts (Animal Print) (Size 22)

Again, I’d say the Size 22 fits me in a comfortably loose way, and with the shorts I probably would go down to a Size 20 as there is no way to tighten the waistband. The cami is loose through the body and is quite long (tucked in here), and I like that the straps are adjustable

Outfit 3

Sail Away Shirt Dress (Natural) (Size 22)

I didn’t realise that this was a ‘faux wrap’ style, so you have no control over how tightly it fits (beyond tightening the waist sash). I probably should have sized down to a 20 in this, as it was too large in the bust. That being said, the fabric is lovely and lightweight, and the style is simple and comfortable to wear, though would work in lots of different situations depending on how you styled it.

Outfit 4

Blaire Button Down Dress (Khaki) (Size 22)

Such a sweet and simple linen dress, I really love this one for an easy summery look. Coming in a few different colours, I’m not sure I’d describe this pastel green/blue as ‘Khaki’ but either way I love it! There’s enough room in the dress that the buttons don’t pull, so I felt flirty but secure!

Outfit 5

Roxy Relaxed Fit Jumpsuit (Size 22)

The jumpsuit is the epitome of chuck-on-and-go outfits, and this one is no exception. I’ve worn it on chilly days with a black turtleneck layered underneath, and on warm days with sandals. I love that it can be dressed up or down, and the elastic waist gives me definition without clinging.

Outfit 6

Billie Button Up Dress (Stripe) (Size 22)

This is one of the more unusual offerings from the You + All range, but I really love it. Layered with a button front shirt (pictured) I felt very comfortable wearing it to work, but also think it would make a cute brunch outfit with sandals and a hat! The straps are buttoned in the back and are very long, so I’ve worn it with them crossed here to correct the length. However you could easily just shorten them.

Outfit 7

Faye Frill Hem Top (Dusty Blue) (Size 22)
Anja A-Line Skirt (Size 22)

Another instance where I was sucked into buying both pieces because of how they model styled them. I thought this skirt and top combo were so dang cute, and they translate really nicely into real-life wear. Another versatile outfit that can be worn for work or play, and each piece has slotted nicely into my wardrobe to be worn with other things I already own.

PROS

  • First and foremost, I think it’s fantastic to see traditionally straight-sized retailers expanding into the plus size world. Putting aside the size range for a moment (we’ll come back to that in the con section!), it is only in the last few years that we’ve really seen an acknowledgement from retailers that there is a plus market just waiting to be serviced, so props to Ally for making the effort.
  • They’re releasing new things every fortnight (I believe) so there are always new garments just waiting to tickle your fancy! And they have a variety of lengths, colours and cuts, so there really is something to suit everyone.
  • There is a real mix of products and materials being used for the line, it’s nice to see so many natural fibre fabrics in use, like linen and cotton. A lot of plus size offerings seem to be that slinky polyester, which isn’t always comfortable to wear.
  • I’m normally a size 20 to 22, and I’d say that everything I tried in a size 22 is loose to the point where with some things I could have sized down. So it’s a true-to-size range, in my opinion.

CONS

  • Without a doubt the biggest drawback to this line (in my opinion) is the size range – I’m wearing a size 22 in all the above garments, and that is their biggest size. In my opinion, that’s really not good enough for a plus size range, when you consider that boohoo go to a size 24 (sometimes 26) and Atmos&Here Curvy go to a size 26.
  • They have recently announced that the You + All range will be available in selected stores. However, given that according to their website they have over 130 stores, carrying the plus range in just 13 locations is somewhat underwhelming.
  • There is nowhere near the same product range in the plus section as there is in the straight section. Hopefully this is something that will change over time, but it’s hard to get past the numbers – at the time of writing, there was 108 curvy items on the website compared to 1548 straight sized items.
  • The curvy range is more expensive. When you look on the website, it seems pretty obvious to me that they’re charging more for plus size items than for straight sizes, generally speaking. I don’t know why that is, but I hope they can equalise the prices across their two ranges!

Final Thoughts

All things said and done, I think Ally have made a great start with their curvy line. There are cute pieces for a fairly affordable price, and I find the quality to be quite nice. If you see something you like on the website, I don’t think you’ll be disappointed if you buy it! However, they need to address the size range, product range, store availability and price ASAP!

Katie xx

[Disclaimer: this post is not sponsored, and all product were purchased by me. All expressed opinions are my own.]

THREE PINK VALENTINES DAY OUTFITS

Though I’m aware that Valentine’s Day isn’t a real holiday (and definitely has a low profile in Australia) it’s definitely the time of the year where people are talking about cutesy romantic things they have planned, and as always, I’m here to deliver you with some cute themed outfits for your cutesy romantic whatever. This is essentially a post to show you a bunch of ways to wear pink, and I’m ok with that. Plus Boohoo really came through with some adorable Valentine’s Day themed outfits and I’m nothing if not a sucker for a cute themed outfit.

I’ve organised my three outfits into arbitrary themes/locations, but honestly, I think these are all really versatile pieces that can be worn year-round and in lots of different scenarios – all of them can be work appropriate, casual or dressy depending on your styling. Even when buying cheaper clothes, I love it when they are versatile and can be worn with many other things I own.

I spent $112 on boohoo and bought five items, all of which can be styled together.

valentines day items

Plus Woven Stripe Midi Dress * – Size 24 – $28
Plus Tie Waist Blazer * – Size 22 – $29
Plus Tailored Trouser * – Size 24 – $22
Plus Rib High Neck Lettuce Hem Top * – Size 24 – $11
Plus Stripe Pleated Skirt * – Size 24 – $22

If you’ve seen my previous post about boohoo, you would know that I always err on the side of sizing up – since that post, I have almost exclusively bought Size 24 from boohoo despite being a size 20/22 everywhere else I shop! I’ve just found that things are more likely to fit comfortably if I size up to a 24, and honestly I don’t care what the number on the tag says as long as it fits well.

OUTFIT 1: OFFICE VALENTINE

Coloured suits are having such a trend moment, and no-one is happier about that than me. This blush pink jacket and pant combo, paired with a soft white turtleneck, could totally be worn to the office, but isn’t so corporate that it couldn’t be worn to dinner or broken down into separates (white top and blazer with cute jeans, pink pants and a patterned jumper or white button-down shirt – heaven!).

Pink Suit.jpg

Blush pink boots are from Marks and Spencer, earrings are from Lovisa.

OUTFIT 2: FROM BRUNCH TO DINNER VALENTINE

No outfit could be simpler than chucking on a cute patterned dress and some white sneakers. Pair it with a trend bamboo or straw bag, and a belt to cinch the waist and this is the perfect dress for a brunch date, whether it’s with your valentine or galentines! This dress has a bold stripe and a cute fluttery hem and sleeves, and the modest v-neck means it could be dressed down for the office with a black blazer, or up for a fancy dinner with some heels and statement earrings.

pink and red dress

OUTFIT 3: THE ALL-OCCASIONS VALENTINE

Midi-length pleated skirts are not only comfortable as heck, but are such a versatile item to have in your wardrobe. Paired with the simple white turtleneck, it’s truly an outfit that could take you anywhere – chill brunch, fancy dinner, or colourful work outfit. Change up the shoes and accessories for a completely different look! I love it paired with the tie-waist blazer from outfit 1 and this sweet merino wool hat from Epitome Hats, which gives it a totally different vibe.

pink and red skirt

 

Which is your favourite? Outfit 1, 2 or 3? Sound off in the comments below, and tell me what you’ll be up to for Valentine’s Day!

 

Katie xx

 

(Disclosure: Asterisk (*) indicates an affiliate link, meaning I earn a small commission if you choose to purchase these items. However this post is not sponsored and all opinions are my own.)

TESTING: REVOLUTION MAKEUP

I’ve been curious about Revolution Makeup (Revolution Beauty? Makeup Revolution? I Heart Revolution? They have so many different names??) for a long time. Super affordable products, great shipping costs to Australia, and they’ve collab’d with some of my favourite beauty youtubers. Combine that with the fact they’re cruelty free and mostly vegan (not all products but there’s an option on their website to shop only their vegan items), AND that they’ve been getting crazy hype on youtube for their concealer that is supposedly a dupe for Tarte Shape Tape concealer.

For clarity, all prices mentioned in this post are in Australian dollars. I’m gonna run you through the ordering and delivery process, swatches and photos of the products, and a few looks I did with the items. At the time of writing (5 September 2018) I’ve used all the items, though I don’t have pictures of everything in use.

ORDERING & DELIVERY

I decided it was time to take the plunge and just order some goodies. They often have perks or freebies, ie. spend over $50 and get a free palette, or brushes. I was impatient and ordered during a time they didn’t have a freebie special, but generally I think you may as well wait until they are running a promo and get extra product. I spent $162 all up, and got 17 items, plus a free lipliner. Plus, because I spent over $50 shipping was free. If you’re spending less that $50, shipping is only $2.95! Which is crazy good, considering that shipping costs to Australia from international retailers can be incredibly pricey.

I ordered on 21 July 2018, and my parcel arrived on 6 August 2018, so it took 11 business days/just over two weeks to arrived. That’s pretty slow, but I think for the cost it’s not unreasonable. Just don’t order anything that you desperately need! Everything was wrapped securely in bubble wrap, and packaged tightly together, so no breakages.

PRODUCTS

Revolution Eyeshadow Palette Soph Eyeshadow Palette * – $18 – Collaboration with YouTuber SophDoesNails

Soph X Palette and Swatches
Revolution Eyeshadow Palette Re-Loaded Palette – Iconic Fever  – $7 – dupe for Urban Decay ‘Naked Heat’ palette

Iconic Fever Palette and Swatches
 *- $7

Newtrals 2 Palette and Swatches
Revolution Eyeshadow Palette Re-Loaded Palette Velvet Rose * – $7 – dupe for Anastasia Beverly Hills ‘Soft Glam’ Palette

(I just wanted to make a note about this palette specifically – while the mattes are beautiful and blend really nicely on the eyes, I’m not very impressed with the shimmers/pressed glitters. Even with a wet brush or a finger, I feel like they don’t show up well, and require a lot of effort to look good. I still think it’s worth the $7 for the matte shades, as the shimmers can be made to work, or you can use a single eyeshadow or a shimmer from another palette.)

Velvet Rose Palette and Swatches
Obsession Eyeshadow Palette Love Every Shade Eyeshadow Palette * – $9

Love Every Shade Palette and Swatches
Revolution Eye Glitter Pressed Glitter Palette Midas Touch * – $18
Revolution Eye Glitter Glitter Glue * – $8

Midas Touch Palette and Swatches
With and without glitter glue

Revolution Eyeliner Renaissance Flick  – $9
Revolution Liquid Lipstick Nudes Collection Gloss – Boudoir  – $5
Revolution Lipstick Soph Nude Lipstick Cake  – $8
Revolution Lipstick Rose Gold Lipstick – Chauffeur  – $5

Eye and Lip Products
L-R: Chauffeur, Boudoir, Cake, Renaissance Flick, Red Lipliner (freebie)

Revolution Concealer Fast Base Concealer C2 * – $9
Revolution Concealer Conceal & Define Concealer – C3  * – $7
Revolution Foundation Fast Base Stick Foundation – F2  * – $9
Revolution Pro Foundation Foundation Drops – F3  * – $13

(For shade matching reference, I use Mont Blanc in NARS Sheer Glow, Fair in IT Cosmetic CC Cream, and Alabaster in Hourglass Vanish Stick Foundation)

Complexion Products

Revolution Blusher Blush Palette – Blush Goddess  * – $11
I Heart Revolution Bronzer Bronze and Glow *  – $11

(The highlighter in the Bronze and Glow duo is absolutely stunning, but it’s worth mentioning that the bronzer/contour shade is very pale and quite sheer. Even on my super fair skin tone, I could go in very heavy-handed and it still looked quite subtle. I like it, but if you have anything darker than a tan complexion I would give this one a pass.)

 

collage

 

LOOK 1: Pinks

Base Products 1

Bronzer, Highlight, Eyeshadow 1

Complete Look 1

LOOK 2: Reds/Browns

Base Products 2

Eyeshadow 2

Eyeliner Pen 2

Lip Products 2

Complete Look 2

FINAL THOUGHTS

With the exception of the comments I made on the Velvet Rose and Bronze and Glow palettes, I was absolutely astounded with the quality of all the products I tried. I ended up not doing a detailed breakdown on my thoughts for each product because I feel like the swatches and photos basically speak for themselves. I was pleased to see that the shades C2/F2 and C3/F3 all worked for me, so there is a bit of flexibility in trying to choose a shade that will match you. I would 100% recommend Makeup Revolution to anyone who has been curious about trying their products – they are always coming out with new things, and there are plenty of reviews circulating the internet if you’re curious about what to get.

Lots of love

Katie xx

 

Disclosure: Asterisk (*) indicates an affiliate link, meaning I earn a small commission if you choose to purchase these items. However this post is not sponsored and all opinions are my own.