This working mother of two is the epitome of a woman who has it all. She has two sweet, beautiful children, a long and successful career in television news, and her beauty is much more than just skin deep. She’s a pretty, petite package of intelligence, warmth, style and grace. The former CNNer worked as an entertainment correspondent for 7 years in LA, before making the switch from network to local news. From the moment she begins to speak, you can tell that she’s trustworthy, credible and a master storyteller.
I asked Kareen to share her secrets for looking so put together whether she’s out in the field or running around with her kids.
Q: What’s your on-air signature look? What are your favorite brands or places to shop?
A: As an on-air reporter, the last thing you want to hear when it comes to your wardrobe is, “Didn’t she wear that last week?” I know it’s probably happened a time or two in my career. Hey, we all make mistakes, but I try to shop at places where I can find classic pieces that you don’t feel like throwing away at the end of each season. I get bored easily with the same trendy styles. Since I have a more relaxed look when it comes to fashion, I try to stick with what reflects my personality. I love wearing bright colored tops to compliment my skin tone. I focus more on tops since that’s what shows on air. I get to cheat a little on the bottom, so I’m often in pants since it’s easier to work in, under deadline out in the field. Cusp is one of my favorite places to shop since they carry many designers. Their shop feels more like a boutique rather than a department store so you’re not overwhelmed by the space and selections. Since I’m petite, I usually have a hard time finding shirts that don’t look “boxy” on air. Theory as well as Elizabeth and James are some of my “go-to” designers. I also love shopping at H&M and Zara. Their prices are more affordable so you leave with bags full of goodies, without breaking the bank. However, my favorite place to shop in LA (drumroll please), is Library in Larchmont Village. They have the most unique styles of dresses, skirts, tops, jeans, pants, you name it! It’s a hidden boutique that’s a little slice of heaven when you walk in. They also carry Rag & Bone boots, which are sometimes difficult to find in a department store. My only warning is that this shop is a little pricey, but they also have amazing sales year round.
Q: What does your weekend wardrobe consist of and how is it different from when you’re on the clock?
A: As a busy mother of two, I usually wake up to a lot of pulling and poking on the weekends, with my kids nudging me out of bed as I cling on to that last second of sleep. In between breakfast duties, planning play dates, and finalizing your typical weekend errands, I have very little time to even think about what I’m grabbing from my closet. I know, it sounds so unfashionable right? When I’m not at work, I’m just as busy chasing my little ones, so I keep it simple. Depending on the season, I’ll throw on a simple maxi dress, jeans, or a comfortable sweatshirt with leggings. Speaking of sweatshirts, I love the ones by Wildfox and James Perse since you can throw them in the washer/dryer and wear them year round. The color and fit never fades! I’ve had a few turn up missing thanks to my girlfriends.
Q: What are your top 5 products that you always keep in your makeup bag?
A: I’m an Islander who loves the sun (born in Jamaica), but since I spend a lot of time in the field, I get my fair share of rays. I’ve had a few moles removed from my face so I never leave home without sunscreen. My favorite translucent brush on powder is by Peter Thomas Roth SPF 45. It blends right into your makeup. You can apply it throughout the day. My makeup bag is also always stocked with Boscia black charcoal blotting paper (smells yummy!), EOS lip balm, Mineral Fusion sheer moisture lip tint, and finally, a “must have”…Neutrogena mineral sheers powder foundation. You can find a majority of these products at Walgreens and Sephora. Yes, I’ve tried all the pricey and popular brands, but these work best for me!
Q: What advice can you give working moms who are looking to incorporate some of their personal style into their working environment, without crossing the line and looking inappropriate?
A: Can I be totally honest? [yes, please!] I’m a tomboy at heart! I feel the most comfortable in jeans and a tee-shirt. Unfortunately, as an on-air reporter, it’s not the attire I can sport unless I’m covering one of my favorite beats, bad weather. With that said, I try to express a little of “who I am,” in my daily wardrobe. Sure, I’ll pull out the dress and skirts once in a while, but since I spend a majority of my time covering crime scenes or chasing an array of stories across the Southland and beyond, I try not to wear anything that’s too tight, short, or distracting. For me, that means no red carpet attire, i.e. cocktail dresses, especially when you’re following up on a homicide. I try to mix and match my styles, for example pairing a colorful button-down shirt with a pencil skirt. One of my “go-to” stores, for many years has been J-Crew. Listen, you can’t go wrong if it’s even the First Lady’s personal favorite right? Helmut Lang also has a timeless collection of styles, especially their dresses, which can be perfectly paired with just about any accessory. Of course, some days you’ll catch me in Current/Elliot or Rag & Bone dark-colored denims, which I sometimes compliment with a more formal top. I try not to break the bank since I love finding great deals. Bottom line: just be yourself! Stick to what looks classy, comfortable, and fun. Believe it or not we are judged on our appearance. Leave a positive and lasting professional impression!
Makeup: Jessica Reyes