2013 Express Favorites Part One

With less than one week left to go in 2013, I've been thinking a lot about my best (and worst) of the year in just about every category of life. So today seemed like a good time to start listing my top Express purchases of 2013. Some of them have already received an entire post to themselves, but in case you haven't been following along since day one, I'll give a little recap on each one.

1. The Portofino Shirt

Express convertible sleeve portofino shirt, snakeskin, leopard, tartain plaid, polka dot, houndstooth

I'm pretty sure I've talked about this shirt more than any other Express product so far. I showed 1.2 million ways (#slightexaggeration) to wear it HERE and gave a little more specific attention HERE.

At the beginning of 2013, I owned zero Portofino shirts. And I actually don't even think they gave it that specific name until this year. By the end of 2013, I managed to collect twelve Portofinos.

Express convertible sleeve portofino shirt, review, collection, wild orchid, bird print, snakeskin, pieced chiffon

When you think about it, twelve is really only one per month for the year, which sounds pretty reasonable to me. Granted, I didn't get my first one until April, but that's beside the point. These are currently a wardrobe staple for me and 2013 was definitely the year of the Portofino.

2. Stella Destroyed Jean Legging

Prior to 2010, I wore designer denim exclusively. Then for some reason I can't recall, I decided to try a pair of jeans from Express. They felt fabulous and were a fraction of the cost, so I made the purchase and haven't looked back to designer jeans since then. I love my Stellas and Zeldas, but this year I added the the Stella Destroyed Jean Legging and I've realized all Stellas are not created equal. I usually don't like to pick favorites among jeans, but this pair makes it easy.

I may have nudged my friend Carylee to get those jeans after this post, and she sent me a follow up photo after she made the purchase with the comment that they are "like butter." BUTTER. So true, my friend. But just to be clear, we mean the non-caloric kind of butter that glides on with ease and makes your thighs look thinner. (See how flattering they are on her! They fit everything just right. And now I really want that shirt she's wearing...)
Express Stella Destroyed Jean Legging, Dark rinse wash

3. Leopard Skinny Belt

Need a belt to go with those jeans? Or just a belt that goes with basically every color of pants and makes the outfit so much cuter? You need the Leopard Skinny Belt. It was definitely my most-loved belt of 2013.

How about a little Pinspiration of outfit ideas for your leopard belt? Okay, here you go!

Express leopard belt outfit ideas
(Sources via Pinterest: Burgundy Pants, White Shorts, Green Pants, Yellow Pants, Pink Shirt, Jeans, White shirt, Polyvore Set)

4. Seamed Twill Cuff Sleeve Moto Jacket

This is one of the first pieces I featured on my blog HERE. Originally it was available in Licorice and Foliage, then in fall they added a black option. I don't think the stock photos do these justice, because I saw them in store first and instantly wanted the first two colors. Then they added a black option in the fall, and I tried to tell myself I didn't need it. Two colors was enough. Wrong. I got the black one and am so glad I did because it's just as versatile as the other two colors. I mainly use this in place of a cardigan on casual outfits and find it makes the look so much more polished.

If you want a little visual convincing of the versatility of this jacket, check out a few ways to wear it below:

Express seamed twill cuff sleeve moto jacket, black, foliage, licorice
(Sources- Top Row: More Pieces of Me, Express Instagram, OTDE. Bottom Row: OTDE, Shopaholic SAHM, More Pieces of Me)

5. Express Lip Gloss

This is yet another piece that I didn't discover until 2013, and now I have a good sized collection of these and use them at least once a day.

Express lip gloss, cotton candini, berry splash, caramel drop watermelon mist

Truthfully, Express is not my first stop when I'm in the market for lipgloss. It's just that sometime this year I figured out that these are the cheapest "regular price" item Express offers. So when I get a mailer coupon for $15 off $75 and I find that the two items I want come to $69.90, this is the best way to get my order up to the dollar amount needed for the coupon (since you can't use coupons with clearance items). So really, the lipgloss saves me money. And as you can see from my collection, I've been saving money a lot this year.

Not sure which color to get? My advice is not to worry too much about which color you order. They are all very sheer with not much pigment so I'm yet to find one that doesn't work with my coloring. They have a great smell and taste, so pick the one that appeals to those senses most and you should be good to go. They also make a great little add-on gift for girlfriends (to keep that Starbucks gift card company...) since you can't really pick the wrong color.

I'll have the rest of my most used and most loved Express items of 2013 next week, and this Friday I'll have my list of shopping and style ideas for all things Express that I've been gathering around the web this week. Thanks for reading and I hope you'll check back soon!

Linking up with Bethany and Meghan



  1. Ah, I loved this post! Could not agree more about the portofino shirt... although you own more than me! I think I have 6 (but pretty much want every single one they make!) Also love my leopard belt... I wear it at least once a week! Hope you had a fabulous holiday!!

    1. Thanks Darcy! Glad you enjoyed the post and I'm with you- I want ALL OF THE COLORS. It's a problem. I'm going to try to hold back a little bit in 2014 on the Portofinos but we'll see how long it lasts.

  2. Man, I think I need to take a family pic of all my portofinos, but I know you have me beat!
    Great post - I agree that the moto jacket is such an easy finishing piece and goes with a lot! That's the reason it's made it on not one but two trips with me in the last couple months!
    And that's awesome about the gloss. I have some Express gloss sitting on my desk at work for that reason - purchased just to "save" me money! So, I guess you're saying I need that leopard belt, huh? It's the only thing in this post I don't own yet. Hmph.

    1. Glad to hear you've been "saving money" on lipgloss, too. It's definitely the responsible thing to do. And yes, everyone needs a leopard belt!

  3. The Portofino shirt is amazing- a total wardrobe workhorse. :)


    1. Totally agree! Thanks so much for visiting, Ashley!

  4. I think Im going to pick up the leopard belt now after seeing this-so versatile. I just bought a cool chain belt from Express went to wear it out and the thing broke before even one use! So I have a return to make anyways.

    1. Ugh, yes, I have a chain belt (from Express) too and it's kind of a PITA. It didn't break, but it totally falls out of the loops any time you have to undo it to use the bathroom or something. You need a leopard belt for sure, just don't get the chain version! LOL.

  5. I love the portfolio too, they go with everything!

  6. I am a big believer in Express, and I am so glad that they are stepping their style game back up!


  7. Great finds! I am loving that red plaid shirt and those jeans :) Thanks for sharing with Three-fer Thursday! We wish you a Happy New Year!

    xo Bethany


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