5 Apps Every Freshman Should Download Now

If you think about it, our smartphones are like clothing; we don’t leave the house without wearing clothes just like we don’t leave without our phones. Grabbing your phone is a natural instinct, like taking off your heels the moment you get home. Checking a notification on your phone is like that annoying zipper on your favorite pair of jeans that just won’t stay zipped, so you’re consistently checking it throughout the day.

Now, think of the App Store as shopping and trying clothes on at the mall. If you see an app that looks like it will be useful, you download it like you would impulse buy a floral, cold-shoulder top at Forever 21.

Then, you explore the app, use it for a couple days, but after that, you probably forget about it, as it stays there for months wasting memory on your phone. This unused app is the same as that top you bought that you wore twice and now it sits in your closet taking up space.

Just like clothing, there are some apps that you use all the time and some that you never even click on. From studying to cooking, here are five functional apps for a college student I guarantee you will use at least once a week!

PHOTO: Lex Kelly

1—Amazon Kindle 

Regardless of where you buy or rent your textbooks from, it is going to be expensive! In my experience, depending on the textbook, I have found that downloading the E-book with the Amazon Kindle app is often cheaper than purchasing the actual textbook. You can download a free sample or the entire book to your computer, smartphone, or tablet.


If you’re like me, writing things down in my agenda is helpful, but I still need more reminders. Egenda is an electronic agenda in which you to enter in all of your assignments for the semester. It also sends you notifications on due dates and reminds you to study for upcoming exams.

PHOTO: Daisa Harris


This budgeting app allows you to track your expenses and see where you spend your money the most. It separates your expenses into categories such as eating out, gas, groceries, etc. Then, it helps you create a budget for yourself. If you forget to enter your purchases, CoinKeeper sends you a daily notification reminding you to keep track of your money and stick to your budget!

4—Thrive Market 

As a college student, eating healthy or organic can be challenging, especially if you’re on your school’s meal plan. Plus, grocery shopping can be an all day affair if you lack your own transportation. With Thrive Market, you can get a vast variety of organic and gluten-free food for half the price that the grocery store sells them—all delivered to your door! A membership is $65 a year; however, there is a free 30-day trial!

PHOTO: Cassidy Clark


Buzzfeed’s Tasty app has video tutorial recipes from breakfast to dessert. The tutorials are simple and easy to follow, especially for someone who is at the beginner stage when it comes to cooking.

Find any of these apps interesting? Have any other apps you love to use while at school? Let me know in the comments below!

How to DIY Your Own Embroidered Beach Hat

As a college student on a budget and a DIY queen, I always say, “Why buy when you can DIY?” In other words, why spend tons of money on something that is incredibly easy to make yourself, for half the price?

One of this summer’s must-haves is beach hats with bold statements or words embroidered on them. They’re all over social media, fashion blogs, online, and in stores. Of course, being a Style Guru, I just had to have one, but I thought that they were a little too expensive. I tried finding one on sale, but I had no luck. Finally, I decided to make one myself because not only would I save money but I could personalize my hat. I wouldn’t have to worry about it looking  “cliche.”

Here’s a simple step-by-step tutorial on how to create your own embroidered beach hat:


1—A canvas or straw wide brim hat. I bought this one at Target, for just  $12!

2—A pencil or Sharpie.

3—At least one foot of thread, twine, or yarn (you may need more or less depending on the size of your letters and the length of your word).

4—An embroidery needle.


1—Think of a word or phrase that you’d like to put on your hat. I came up with the phrase “Shell Yeah!” to express my enthusiasm for the beach. Begin by lightly writing the words with the pencil or Sharpie in big letters, on the far right side of the back of your hat. For a shorter word or phrase, start the beginning of the word closer to the center of the hat.

2—Using your needle and thread, hand-stitch each letter.

It’s that simple! Now, go to the beach and rock your hat on with confidence!

The beauty of DIY fashion is that you can give your project a sense of originality, personalize it, and make it your own.

If you create your own embroidered beach hat, I’d love to see it! Share it on social media by tagging @Cfashionista!

Here’s How to Style a Skirt Three Different Ways

Like most teens struggling to survive middle school in the late 2000s, I would do anything to “fit in,” that meant wearing the latest and trendiest tops from Aeropostale and Hollister. You know, the $40 tees with their brand name plastered on the front that made you look like a walking billboard. Yet, as a 13-year-old, I felt like the most fashionable girl, strutting through the hallways of middle school wearing my new Hollister tee, until I saw four other girls wearing the same exact one.

By the time I got to high school, I was tired of worrying about finding my daily twin. I decided that my wardrobe needed a touch of originality. I began shopping at consignment stores, where I found affordable and unique chic clothes, which guaranteed that no one would be wearing the same outfit as me. If I found something at a consignment store, I would alter it and think of ways I could enhance it, or make it more my style. From then on, I went to school in style with confidence.

I have continued to consignment shop because I can always find something unique and it’s affordable for a college fashionista on a budget. Last week, I went to my favorite consignment store, where I stumbled across a maxi denim button-down skirt! A denim skirt is a staple for a Fashionista’s wardrobe and for it costing only $4, I was ready to staple it onto my body.

Although the skirt looked incredibly chic, I knew that it could be something more than just the denim skirt. My guru instincts kicked in and as soon as I got it in my closet, I did a few fashion experiments to see how I could style it. These are the results:

1—The Traditional Way

Wearing the skirt in the original fashion, I paired it with a striped T-shirt and some ballet flats. With a simple Kate Spade wristlet, this outfit is perfect for a walk downtown.

2—The Denim Dress

I simply pulled up the skirt and wrapped a braided belt around the waist, which ties it all together and coordinates with the Calvin Klein handbag. With a beaded choker and a fedora, this chic dress is ready to wear on a date.

3—The Denim Dress Plus a Bandeau

Once I had the denim dress, I tired one more experiment and slid my black bandeau over the top of it. Adding the bandeau makes it look like a completely different dress and paired with nude wedges and some red lipstick, I’d be ready to go shopping with the girls!

If your wardrobe needs a hint of originality stop in one of your local consignment stores and think outside the box. You never know what you’re going to find.

Which outfit is your favorite of my denim skirt experiments? Comment below!