A Love Letter to the First Artist I Fangirled Over, Shania Twain

Dearest Shania,

You first came into my life with your sweet love song, “You’re Still the One,” which a classmate sang during music class. New to Arizona, and country music as a whole, I didn’t know which voice originated the lyrics she sang, or the name of the song, but serendipity struck one day while driving to school.

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I heard the familiar lyrics singing over the radio and as luck would have it, the DJ announced your name.

Shania Twain.

I bought your CD, Come On Over, still my favorite, and listened to it on loop for years. If a movie is ever made of my life, the inevitable montage of my childhood would play over the lyrics of “Man! I Feel Like a Woman!” I mean, men’s shirts (okay, my dad’s) and short skirts became my outfit of elementary school.

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I spent countless hours flipping through your CD booklets, memorizing each and every lyric and breath while your albums blasted into my ears through the crappy headphones of my old Walkman. I would lay on my bed, using the booklet sometimes more as a catalog than anything else. Your wardrobe would be the cherry on top of my young life.

The only thing I wanted to do all day every day was choreograph dances to your songs. Usually they were quite literal and, yes, pantomime was featured often, but man, that red two-piece outfit of yours would have really taken the choreo up a notch.

In second grade my teacher was pregnant and towards the end of the year it became questionable whether she would make it to the last day of school. As an activity, she passed around a worksheet for us to fill in ideas about the baby. Questions included whether we thought it was a boy or girl, how much we thought it would weigh, and what we thought the baby should be named. That’s right, she was taking name suggestions.

I couldn’t have cared less about the rest of the worksheet, boy or girl, doesn’t matter, I couldn’t wait to influence my teacher, change her life forever for the better. On the worksheet I wrote the following:

“If it’s a girl, what should I name her? Shania Twain.”

“If it’s a boy, what should I name him? Shania Twain.”

You read that correctly. Under both name suggestions I wrote not only your first name, but both your first and last. I’m not sure if I intended “Twain” to be a middle name, a hyphenated first, or simply for my teacher to forgo her own last name entirely.

Let’s just say that my teacher finished the year before having her baby and didn’t return to work the next year, so I never did find out what she named the baby. But I’d like to think there’s a little male Shania Twain running around central Arizona.

More importantly, you taught me lessons about my own life. You taught me that I could be both feminine and boyish, that I could both love romance and be powerfully independent, that I could live between two contraries rather than choose one identity, just like your music which was both pop and country. Weird and elegant and spunky and strong and delicate and lovable, despite holding very high standards.

Writing is my therapy and writing this new album helped me come to terms with a lot of things emotionally.

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You taught me not to settle for less and you taught men to respect women… your song, “If You Wanna Touch Her, Ask!”—I mean I’d never heard anything like that before.

I finally got to see you in concert a couple years ago when you came to the Staples Center in Los Angeles for your Rock This Country Tour and it felt like everything in my life had led me to that moment. While the show was punctuated with unforeseeable difficulties, both technical and audience-influenced, you took the stage and mic with grace that I’d only expect to see from you. It was, simply put, one of the best nights of my life.

This is a love letter in a sense, but greater than that, it’s a thank you note. Thank you for providing my childhood with depth and for doing so in such a fun, lyrical and musically inviting way. I owe a lot of my self-esteem to your influence.

Forever your fan,



If you’re feeling the love for strong female role models, click HERE to read Ashley’s love letter to one of the greatest Disney heroines, Megara from Hercules.

These Are the Top 5 Songs off Lana Del Rey’s Lust for Life Album

World, stop. Lana Del Rey‘s highly awaited fourth studio album Lust for Life is here.

A stark departure from her moody days of Born to Die and Ultraviolence, it feels as though Lana has finally found herself with this album.

She’s back, and cooler than ever, with a breadth of work meant to empower someone who once felt lost in the world.

Every song on the album is solid, but there were five songs that really stood out to us as being some of Lana’s best work. Scroll below to listen to them:

1. “Beautiful People Beautiful Problems” feat. Stevie Nicks

Arguably the most anticipated collaboration of all time, Lana teamed up with music legend Stevie Nicks on this harrowingly beautiful tune. Though these two songstresses have unique voices, they blend perfectly on this track. Their harmonies are truly enchanting.


2. “13 Beaches”

Drawn in by the sounds of an angelic symphony, it took all of 15 seconds for us to be completely mesmerized by “13 Beaches.” Brutally honest, Lana lays it all out there in one of the most vulnerable songs she’s ever released.


3. “God Bless America – And All the Beautiful Women in It”

A self-love anthem to end all anthems, “God Bless America – And All the Beautiful Women in it” left us feeling utterly empowered. Lana croons prose we all need to take to heart. As she says, “May you stand proud and strong like Lady Liberty” after hearing this tune.


4. “Tomorrow Never Came” feat. Sean Ono Lennon

The melodic instrumentals and soothing vocals from both Lana and Sean Ono Lennon on “Tomorrow Never Came” had us in a trance. The harmonious acoustic track clearly draws inspiration from a couple of The Beatles’ classics, but still has a vibe all its own.


5. “Get Free”

Being the closing track on Lust for Life, we expected a lot from “Get Free.” Without a doubt, it delivered. It’s more of a reflective song and calls upon the listener to really check in with themselves. Lana has moved onto happier times. Are you ready to do the same?


Listen to our top five songs by following the playlist below:


We didn’t put “Love” on this list, but it was definitely one of the best music videos of 2017, so far. Watch our other fave videos from the year HERE.

5 Signs Your Crush Only Sees You as a Friend

We’ve all developed feelings for someone and then laid awake at night wondering if they felt the same way.

Sometimes it’s hard to tell, but often it’s pretty obvious that the cutie we’re crushing on isn’t at all into you.

If you’re trying to figure out where you stand with the darling of your dreams, below are five signs they only see you as a friend.

1. You Only Hang Out in Group Settings

When the two of you hang out, you’re always surrounded by your other friends. If one-on-one time isn’t something you get with them, it’s pretty clear he isn’t trying to turn your relationship into a romantic one.

And if the two of you happen to have some alone time, does he just blatantly ignore you? He isn’t nervous, he’s uninterested.

You may try to get him to hang out as just you two, but he probably won’t go for it.

Group of friends having a dance party otuside

(via Shutterstock)


2. You’re Always the One to Text First

You may think he’s shy not being the one to reach out first, but that’s really just his way of saying he doesn’t want to date you.

If you’re always the one to initiate anything, then it’s obvious he’s holding back because he just sees you as a friend.

Someone who really wants to be with you will put in the same amount of effort you are.

Girl watching as a guy texts someone else

(via Shutterstock)


3. They Make Sure Everyone Knows You’re Just Friends

Any time someone mistakes the two of you for a couple, he’s quick to laugh and point out that you’re “just friends.” He may even jokingly refer to you as his “sister.” Clearly he’s not planning on dating you anytime soon, so accept that the two of you are probably going to just remain friends.

He probably even calls you “buddy” or “pal” on the regular, too, just to make sure even you know where you stand in his life.

Girl picking the petals off flowers to see if guy likes her while guy has his back turned away from her

(via Shutterstock)


4. They Never Get Jealous

You may flirt with his friends when he’s around or even try to get him to set you up with one of them, and how does he act? He’s all about it.

Don’t take this as him being too scared to reveal his undying love for you, no. He’s willing to set you up with one of his friends because you are just that to him—a friend. Don’t get it twisted.

He clearly isn’t bothered by you pretending to like someone else, because he doesn’t like you that way.

Girl flirting with her crush's friend to make her crush jealous

(via Shutterstock)


5. They Ask If Your Friends Are Single

If he asks if one of your besties is single, it’s because he’s into her and not you. Unfortunately, this isn’t his way of trying to make you jealous. Guys are pretty transparent, so if he’s asking about your BFF’s relationship status, it’s for a reason—he wants to date her.

Hopefully your bestie will prove she’s a good friend by not going out with him, but in the off chance she does, drop them both. You don’t need them in your life.

Girl's crush flirting with her best friend

(via Shutterstock)


Dealing with your crush turning down your advances is never easy, but HERE are seven things you can do that’ll make dealing with this rejection so much easier.

These Stress-Relieving Products Will Help You Unwind After a Long Day

Stress happens to the best of us, but it doesn’t need to derail your life.

If you’re feeling overwhelmingly stressed out, we’ve got just what you need right here. Scroll through this list of calming items to put the pep back in your step ASAP.

De-Stress Therapy Balm: $24

Made with the uplifting scents of chamomile, neroli and mandarin, this balm will immediately ease your mind the second you massage it into your neck. Make sure to breathe deeply after you apply to soak up its powerful aroma.

De-stress therapy balm from scentered

(via Scentered)


Stress Management Bath Salt: $8.50

A soak in the tub is sure to rid you of all the unwanted stress in your life, especially with the help of this bath salt. The clary sage and tangerine essential oils infused in the Dead Sea and Epsom salt will have you feeling so much better in no time.

Stress management bath salt from Etsy

(via Etsy)


Stress Release Soothing Face and Body Mist: $19.95

If you want to quickly snap back to your center, spritz some of this mist onto your face and body. Its blend of lavender, chamomile and orange essential oils will definitely help you find your chill.

Stress Release soothing face and body mist from Saje

(via Saje)


Twilight Bath Bomb: $6.95

Watch your worries melt away as you let this dreamy bath bomb made with relaxing lavender oil and comforting tonka absolute dissolve in your tub.

Twilight bath bomb from Lush

(via Lush)


“I’m Soy Burnt Out” Candle: $10

With notes of invigorating chili pepper and orange zest, this candle will instill you with all the energy you need to get you through the day.

I'm soy burnt out candle from Etsy

(via Etsy)


Chill Pill Soap: $4.50

Ever wanted to take a chill pill? Now you can… sort of. Lather up your body with this sandalwood-scented soap to put the chill back in your life.

Chill pill soaps from Etsy

(via Etsy)


Relax-o-Ring: $4.95

One of the easiest ways to relax is with a little help from reflexology. Massage this copper coil ring up and down each of your fingers for a harmonious result.

Relax-o-ring from Saje

(via Saje)


African Jasmine Incense: $2.50

The second you light one of these bad boys up, you’ll feel the relieving powers of jasmine at work. Relax, just do it.

African Jasmine Incense from House of Intuition

(via House of Intuition)


Mini Zen Garden: $34.99

Probably the easiest product to use, just comb through the sand when you start to feel the stress take over and you’ll feel renewed just like that.

Mini zen garden from Etsy

(via Etsy)


Crochet Cat Stress Relief Ball: $17

Nothing like giving a stress ball a good squeeze to help you unwind, right?

Crochet cat stress relief ball from Etsy

(via Etsy)


Coconut Cleansing Bubble Bath: $10

Adding this coconut-scented bubble bath to your water will increase your positive energy like no other.

Coconut Cleansing Bath from House of Intuition

(via House of Intuition)


If none of these items end up working, try adding one of THESE kawaii squishies to your phone case.

Obsess Over These Mystery Podcasts When the PLL Withdrawal Kicks In

Are you experiencing it yet? The excruciating realization that you’ll never ever see a brand new episode of Pretty Little Liars for the rest of your life?

Well, we definitely are. While we’re certain that we haven’t seen the last televised adaptation of Sara Shepard’s amazing novels (fingers crossed for a Freeform version of her latest series, The Amateurs) we have to admit that our craving for crime and mystery has started to kick in.

Take care of your PLL withdrawals by binging these podcasts that range from creepy to cringey and all of the crime in between:


This podcast features true crime stories as narrated by Phoebe Judge, a reporter whose previous work has earned her multiple awards. Aside from this podcast being centered around crimes—those who perpetrate them and those who are affected by them—this crew is composed almost entirely of women. You go, girls! By tuning into Criminal you’ll hear a different real-life story each episode.

New episode! Can one man bully an entire town? Link in bio.

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Welcome to Night Vale

This podcast brings freaky and fiction together for one very binge-worthy story. Set in the made-up town of Night Vale, this immersive podcast is written to sound like a real radio show reporting on the strange goings-on in the small desert town. Think The Twilight Zone meets the X-Files and tag on totally unique content. You may occasionally recognize voice actors… such as one Mara Wilson. Name not ringing a bell? How about Matilda? Yep, that child actor you haven’t heard from in decades is featured on this fictional podcast.


The Generation Why

For those of you who have opinions on various crimes, controversies and conspiracies, this podcast is the one for you. Each episode we hear from two friends as they discuss their theories on unsolved murders, serial killers and stories that just don’t seem to match up. These cases feature both the old and the new as the two friends tackle even the toughest of crimes. This podcast is not for the faint of heart, so enter at your own risk!

Alice Isn’t Dead

Alice has more in common with Alison than simply the first letter of her name—in this serial fiction podcast from the creators of Welcome to Night Vale, a truck driver searches across the nation for her wife who has been presumed dead for years. During this search she uncovers much more than she bargained for, including conspiracies and other unusual cases.


My Favorite Murder

Crime + comedy = a podcast match made in heaven (pun intended). Hosted by comedian Karen Kilgariff and TV host Georgia Hardstark, these lovely ladies can’t get enough of true crime stories and are all too eager to share their insights and humor with their listeners. Occasionally they chat about hometown murders submitted by friends and fans, but a typical crimecast involves the hosts discussing true crime mysteries in gory—I mean glorious—detail. TBH, if you love yourself you should really be tuning into this podcast. Honestly, stop reading this article right now and download MFM.

Hiyeeee. From our interview in @entertainmentweekly. #murderino #ssdgm #myfavoritemurder

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This podcast is for the real detectives at heart. Yeah yeah, you’ve heard all of the old unsolved crime stories, you’ve emotionally flipped through dozens of files, all just a detail short of cracking the case. But with this podcast, you’re ready to get a fresh look at an unknown case and, obviously, keep a pen and paper nearby to scrawl out each detail. S-Town is produced by the people who brought us Serial, so, basically, you know it’s going to be good.

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Get ready for another fictional series as this podcast dives deep into the mystery of 300 men, women and children who disappeared from a small town in Tennessee a decade ago. We follow journalist Lia Haddock, an investigative reporter, as she attempts to uncover the truth.


Another one of our favorite mystery-based shows this year was Riverdale. If you’re anxiously awaiting the show’s return next season like we are, you need to check out THESE other shows with mystery intrigue.

Can We Guess Your Soul (Junk) Food Based On Your Zodiac Sign?

It’s National Junk Food Day and we are stocking up on snacks both salty and sweet. After all, they don’t call us Sweety High for nothing!

Two friends sitting on grocery store floor eating junk food

(via Shutterstock)

While we have a taste for almost every junk food on the planet, the cosmos know the truth behind your No. 1 fave food.

Scroll below to find out if we correctly guessed your favorite junk food based on your zodiac sign:

Cancer (June 21 – July 22): Pizza

Technically pizza may be labeled as “junk food” but to you it’s practically part of the family. As a Cancer you value security and what could possibly be more comfortable and familiar than a large pizza pie? For you, pizza holds a place in your heart forever after countless birthday parties and sports events that featured this hot and cheesy dish.

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Leo (July 23 – Aug. 22): Sour Candy

Leos, you have a flair for the dramatic and always wear your emotions on your sleeve. For you, sour candy truly expresses your passionate side. From Warheads to Sour Patch Kids, you just can’t get enough of this intensely delicious flavor. When put to the test, you can withstand even the most pucker-worthy candies, which definitely puts you in the spotlight. With a personality as big as yours, you need a junk food that’s equally exciting.

Attention all movie goers, can you take the WARHEADS challenge and keep your cool during the film? #SourOn

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Virgo (Aug. 23 – Sept. 22): Lunchables

Virgos are all about order, organization and control. You love your Lunchables because they give you the opportunity to choose your own snack path. You get a secret pleasure out of divvying up the precise amount of sauce and cheese for each pizza and just adore how the plastic box has a separate space for each ingredient. The Lunchable was practically created for your kind; the person who enjoys the small details that go into making one perfect snack.

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Libra (Sept. 23 – Oct. 22): Chocolate-Covered Pretzels

Libras value balance and harmony above all else, which is why chocolate-covered pretzels are your go-to junk food snack. I mean, the combination of salty and sweet creates an equilibrium for your taste buds that’s unparalleled to any other snack. Being the just and fair zodiac sign that you are, you’re always torn when choosing between these two flavors. Thanks to chocolate-covered pretzels you never have to feel guilty about leaving out one of your two fave flavors again. Salty+sweet together 4ever.

A post shared by FLIPZ (@flipz) on


Scorpio (Oct. 23 – Nov. 21): Flaming Hot Cheetos

Scorpios are the most passionate and mysterious sign of the zodiac, while also tending to be a bit misunderstood. Many people won’t lay a finger on Flaming Hot Cheetos because they’re afraid they’ll get burned, but Scorpios know that this snack contains a punch of flavor with a slow burn. You love that this snack lives on the dangerous side because so do you. Like these Hot Cheetos, you can sometimes feel a little overwhelmed and intense, but that just speaks to your inherent power.

How to turn yourself into a dragon: Step 1: Eat XXtra Flamin’ Hot Cheetos. Step 2: Breathe.

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Sagittarius (Nov. 22 – Dec. 21): Lay’s Potato Chips

Sagittarius cannot be tamed. You’re all about expanding your boundaries, going on adventures and exploring the world. You love Lay’s potato chips because this brand gives you the opportunity to travel through your taste buds. With their unique flavors that range from Wasabi Ginger to Crispy Taco, you can travel the globe with the yummiest of all senses. Your appreciation for new things makes the variety of this treat a top choice, but you also value the portable packaging because you’re always on the go.


Capricorn (Dec. 22 – Jan. 19): Little Debbie Oatmeal Cream Pies

Capricorns are the most traditional sign of the zodiac and value loyalty as well as dedication. Little Debbie has an array of snacks, all of which call to the nature of Caps, but it’s the oatmeal cream pies that have captivated your taste buds. Sweet and soft, these tiny pies are the perfect pick-me-up snack for days when you’re feeling just a tad too serious.

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Aquarius (Jan. 20 – Feb. 18): Ice Cream Sundae

When it comes to Aquarius, they are all about innovation. Often thought of as the “mad scientists” of the zodiac, their meddling brains just can’t stop pushing boundaries. You love the ice cream sundae because of the simple ingredients that allow it to be so versatile. This day in age, the real question is what can’t you do with a sundae? You love to experiment with new flavor and topping combos and won’t stop until you’ve developed the newest ice cream hybrid. Let’s be honest, it was probably an Aquarius who thought up the ice cream-filled donuts.


Pisces (Feb. 19 – March 20): Chocolate, Chocolate and More Chocolate

Pisces are the most empathetic sign of the zodiac, and what’s more understanding than chocolate? I’ll wait. Whether you’re having a bad day, celebrating a victory, or sharing love with friends, family and romances, chocolate is always there for you. Pisces understand the value of deep emotions and chocolate is always there to revitalize the soul when it begins to feel the pressure. From fancy chocolate truffles to Halloween candy fun-sized bars, you will eat all the chocolate you can get your hands on. Because, hey, a Pisces never discriminates based on looks.


Aries (March 21 – April 19): Your Fave Fast Food Burger

Everyone has their favorite burger. In SoCal, we have a taste for In-N-Out, while on the east coast, Shake Shack is the (burger) king. The point being, when it comes to your favorite fast food burger, you have opinions. Aries are known to be devoted and stubborn, putting their foot down on their beliefs and never wavering. That’s why your sole fast food is your favorite burger which you swear by. When anyone tries to contest the superiority of your burger, your competitive side kicks in and you can’t help but drive them to your joint and force a special down their throats.

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Taurus (April 20 – May 20): Frozen Food Section

When it comes to Taurus, you live by the motto “slow and steady wins the race.” You’re the builders of the zodiac which means that you’re skilled at taking small steps to reach your end goal. While frozen food is a less immediate snack, you’re willing to wait for the end result. From Bagel Bites to taquitos and all of the mozzarella sticks in between, you have your heart-eyes set on these frozen treats. Whether you’re making it into a meal or sharing an appetizer with friends, your soul (junk) food can always be found in the freezer section.

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Gemini (May 21 – June 20): Cookies

What could possibly be better than a midnight snack of milk and cookies while gabbing with your BFF? Gemini are the chattiest cats of the zodiac and are always up for good conversation. We’ve never met a cookie that didn’t inspire and neither has a Gemini. With a batch of cookies in the oven or a variety of boxes in the cupboard, you are always ready to share this sweet treat with even sweeter company. Pair the cookies with coffee for an intellectual convo or milk for some consoling comfort. Either way, this snack is a real ice breaker when it comes to tearing down walls and building friendships.


Speaking of junk food, find out how this baker combined a favorite cheesy snack into his already famous cookie creations HERE.

The First Splatoon‘s Final Boss Fight Is Still One of the Greatest Video Game Bosses of All Time

Splatoon 2 is officially out today on the Nintendo Switch, and even after beating the new game’s Hero Mode, I’m still hung up on the truly epic boss battle at the end of the first Splatoon game.

Splatoon DJ Octavio boss battle

(via Nintendo)

The boss was the trash-talking, bass-loving DJ Octavio who musically fights you from his flying DJ booth, complete with a set of giant mechanical fists. He made his own boss fight music, spinning the records with wasabi roots, and the beat was no joke. If you haven’t seen this battle in action, you can watch the whole thing here.

On top of the pulse-pounding music, the fight itself long and grueling, really testing the player’s skills while remaining totally original and changing up the gameplay enough so that it never became tedious. Even the most efficient players would struggle to beat it in under 10 minutes. It feels significant, like you’re involved in a truly massive undertaking.

Your mission is to rescue the giant zapfish that powers Inkopolis Square, as well as your mentor Cap’n Cuttlefish. As you make your way through the huge starship-like arena, you must use your ink gun to destroy Octavio’s projectiles and knock his giant metallic fists back at him to give him a taste of his own medicine. There’s also a massive turbine which you must volley back and forth until you can force it to strike Octavio.

All the while, the pounding rhythm of Octavio’s electronic music continues to drive the action with Octavio showing off, warning you about his new attacks, threatening to remix your face and dropping aquatic music-based puns like it’s nobody’s business.

Splatoon DJ Octavio boss battle drop the bass

(via Nintendo)

Still, you can’t forget that you’re in the middle of a tense battle. You must remember to constantly refill your ink supply so you’re ready to take on anything, and have to use that paint to make your way through the environment as Octavio retreats again and again.

He also has a massive laser that will instantly obliterate you if touched, and the closer you get to defeating him, the more dastardly the obstacles get. Certain floors are invisible and can only be spotted when splattered with your ink. The flying projectiles get more and more numerous, as do the Octoling baddies whose only mission is to destroy you before you can put an end to the DJ’s evil reign.

It takes a lot to bring Octavio down, and if you’re not up to the task, it can be easy to get splatted again and again by his crafty tricks. If you lose all your lives, you must start the entire battle over, which can be pretty frustrating if you’re nine minutes into an 11-minute tussle. Still, each and every try can feel completely worth because every element of fighting Octavio is so satisfying.


But the best part comes about three quarters of the way into the fight. At this point, you learn the true identities of Agents 1 and 2, who were pop icons Callie and Marie from the Squid Sisters band all along. They’ve been cheering you on the entire fight, but it’s at this point that they manage to override Octavio’s jams, blasting a hit of their own to drown him out. Their song is fun and fast-paced, giving you the final boost of confidence you need to take out your musical adversary.

Splatoon DJ Octavio boss battle cap'n cuttlefish

(via Nintendo)

Not many boss battles manage to keep players energized for so long, not just with great gameplay, but also with two epic and memorable themes. This fight could have been a frustrating mess, but instead it’s become a shining example that our games should strive to replicate.


Thought the first Splatoon game was fun? Click HERE to read our brand new review of Splatoon 2.

Check Out This Back-to-School Yoobi DIY With Muser Riley Lewis

As much as we don’t want summer to end, there is one thing that makes it all worth it: back to school shopping!

Nothing says “fresh start” like a brand new backpack full of cute school supplies to kick the year off right.

We invited our fave muser triplets—Riley, Dakota and Madison Lewis—to customize a whole slew of awesome school gear from Yoobi right here at Sweety High. Not only does Yoobi make the most adorable supplies, but every time you buy an item, one gets donated to a classroom in need! In just the year and a half since Yoobi launched, they have directly impacted more than one million kids in schools across the U.S. Now that’s a curriculum we can get behind!


Riley customized this holographic bag with Yoobi stickers, patches and pins for a back to school tote that will totally turn heads. Check out the video below to see what Riley created, and get inspired for your own back-to-school haul!

Related Video: DIY Back to School W/ Muser Riley Lewis


If you love a decked out backpack as much as we do, check out THIS selection of sacks we totally dig!