How to Make The Most of Your Instax Mini Camera

How to Make The Most of Your Instax Camera

Who has an Instax?! Or, maybe you keep adding it to your shopping cart online and then telling yourself you’ll just buy one later? That was me for a while! Anyway, this post is for you.

I got my Instax mini 8 (in white) back in September but didn’t play around with it very much. I felt like I needed to save the film for fun occasions, so I was a little hesitant to bust it out at events or even in low-key environments.

But, what’s the point of having a fun camera like the Instax mini if you don’t use it? Here are a few ways to really make the most of your camera and take good photos: 

First of all, don’t be shy to use your camera. Yeah, in a lot of situations when you’re out an about, you’re going to feel a little silly taking photos with your Instax.  Learn to tune out your surroundings and have a little fun! Stay calm, steady, and relaxed when composing for the best photos. Don’t cover the exposure meter (the two holes above the lens) or the flash when taking a photo.

Try taking photos of everything. Your friends. Your face. Your eyeball. A pretty flower you saw. Your breakfast. Your coffee. A funny sign. Your happy hour cocktail. If you really want to get comfortable with your camera, you’re going to have to use it. 

Invest in a good camera bag or strap. If you feel like you have to inconveniently lug your camera around, you probably won’t use it very much. Whether you use a camera strap, special camera bag, or even a bigger purse to hold your camera, have something with you to hold your camera if you’re going to be holding it for a long time. One time, I thought I would be fine just holding my camera everywhere I went but it got annoying pretty quickly. 

How to Make The Most of Your Instax Camera

This case is currently on sale at Urban Outfitters and it fits the mini 8 like a glove. 

Get artsy with different filters and attachments. It’s pretty fun to play around with filters and lenses on the Instax. This pack has a few colored filters, and this lens helps you take better selfies. Instead of buying colored filters, you can also go the DIY route and use colored cellophane or sunglasses to create cool filters too. 

Try out different types of film. Fujifilm actually makes a variety of film for their minis: wide frame, monochromatic, rainbow, shiny star, air mail…the list goes on and on. It’s pretty uncommon to find a good variety at stores, so order online for the best selection. Fujifilm has a list right here. I’m definitely going to buy a monochromatic pack one of these days! 

Display your photos in frames, albums, and scrapbooks. While hanging photos on a photo wire or taping them directly to the wall has that carefree cool girl vibe to it, you actually have options when it comes to displaying or saving your photos. Urban Outfitters actually has a ton of frames and albums made just for Instax. I have a couple of the clear frames for my photos and LOVE them. They just sit on my desk. 

Buy film in bulk. Let’s be real–snapping photos on with your Instax costs a lot more than snapping photos with your phone. Costco sells the regular Instax mini film in some of their warehouses for a nominal price, but I prefer to order on Amazon for the convenience. $10-$15 per twin pack is pretty standard for the classic white film. You might be paying more like $10/pack for the other special film packs. 

Tips for taking photos:

  • Make sure the exposure you have set matches up with the light on the camera, unless you want to deliberately overexpose or underexpose for an artistic look.
  • The viewfinder isn’t exact, so you will need to make sure you’re pointing the lens at the subject. Try turning the camera to the right a little and tilt upward.
  • Do not expose the film to light. Do not shake the photos. Once you have taken a photo, make sure the photo isn’t exposed to direct sunlight. If you’re outdoors, put it in your pocket or in a bag to protect the image. 
  • Carry extra film and batteries with you! 

That’s pretty much it! Do you have any tips to add to make the most of your Instax experience?

Disclosure: this post contains affiliate links. 

Wedding Invitation Basics & Tips

Wedding Invitation Etiquette

Engagement season is coming to a close soon and wedding season is about to kick into full gear! If you’re one of the ladies tying the knot in the near future, you’ll definitely want to be up to speed on wedding invitation etiquette. It’s pretty easy to forget about etiquette with all the things that need to happen when planning a wedding– themes, colors, venues, dresses, bridal party, etc.–the list goes on forever! 

Here are some of the basics you’ll need to think about when it comes to wedding invitations. Included are links to helpful resources that give you a great amount of detail and answer almost any question you might have!

  • Start looking at invitations and save-the-dates about 8-10 months before the date. This will give you a little time to think about colors and themes while you’re looking to finalize a venue. 
  • Send out save-the-dates 6-8 months ahead of the wedding date and wedding invitations 6-8 weeks before the wedding (The Knot). Invitations for destination weddings should be sent out 3 months in advance. This gives people time to make the appropriate arrangements to be there. 
  • Without getting into the nitty-gritty of the fine details on wording for your wedding invitations, you’ll need to include some basics: the full names of the bride and groom, the time, date, month, and year of the wedding, and the location. Formal invitations will also include the names of the hosts, which are generally the bride’s parents. If you’re finding this to be a little tricky (perhaps the hosts are divorced), Basic Invite has all of your questions answered here!  
  • Wedding invitations tend to be quite formal, using language and a format that has been used for centuries. Formal wedding invitations are common, but if you’re have a more casual celebration or perhaps a rustic wedding, there is no need to follow formalities to a tee. 

    Rustic and less formal save-the-date and invitation

  • While not on the formal invitation, do give your guests clear guidelines on attire, directions (with a map) to the venue, accommodation details, and information on any activities (like dancing). Not only will they be more prepared for the big day, but you won’t be fielding questions left and right from guests about these things. This information can accompany the wedding invitation but should not go on the formal invite.
  • If you’re sending out more than just the the wedding invitation, such as a response card, there is a method to placing everything in the envelope. Refer to this guide here on how to assemble your invitations

    Invitation with extra information

  • Do not list your wedding registry on your wedding invitations or on your save-the-dates. It’s impolite. You may, however, tell your bridal party and close family and friends where you’re registered and guests may ask them or they may tell guests. 
  • If you have a wedding website, include this information the save-the-date, not on the wedding invitation.
  • Gifts will likely be sent to the return address on the invitation or save-the-date. If you would like gifts to be sent to a different address, you should list an address beneath the RSVP line on the invitation. 

Some reallllly helpful tips: 

  • Sign up now for mailing lists to get discounts and special savings on save-the-dates and invitations. 
  • Save-the-dates are a little more informal and fun, and they’re also not required. If you’re having a small wedding and you’re not inviting a bunch of guests from out of town, you may not need to send out save-the-dates. If you are sending out save-the-dates, check out these save the date ideas!
  • Ask friends and family in advance for their information. It will take time to correctly format every invitation. 
  • Visit the post office to see how much it will cost to send out your invitations. If you’re sending out a lot of info with the invitations, you might be paying more. In order to do this, you should order a sample invitation set. 
  • Register at common places such as Macy’s, Target, Crate & Barrel, Williams-Sonoma, and Pottery Barn in addition to any place you would like to register. You may have some guests who directly search for your registry all on their own without speaking to any family or the bridal party. 
  • Order thank you cards before your wedding. This ensures you’ll be able to send them out in a timely manner. 
  • Work with a reputable company that has great reviews and has great customer service. This is your wedding, after all. 

Sounds pretty crazy, right? Well, Basic Invite is here to put your mind at ease and simplify everything for you. They’re different than their competition in a few ways. 

Almost Unlimited Colors – Basic Invite is one of the few websites that allows customers almost unlimited color options with instant previews online. Once you select a design you can change the color of each element on the card to over 180 different color options. So, you can make sure the card is exactly how you want it – down to the littlest detail. 

Custom Samples – Order a printed sample of the actual invitation so you can see exactly how it’ll look when placing the final order. The print quality or paper quality won’t be a total mystery. 

Over 40 Different Colors of Envelopes – You can choose from over 40 different colors when it comes to the envelopes.  All envelopes are peel and seal so the envelopes can be quickly and securely closed. What a time saver!

Over 200 Wedding Invitation Sets -Each of the wedding invitations is part of a set. You can find everything from save the dates to wedding invitations and enclosure cards, wedding menus, wedding programs and even matching thank you cards! 

With everything you have to manage when planning a wedding you’ll definitely want to bookmark or save this post!

Check out Basic Invite on your favorite platforms! Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram |Twitter 

Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Basic Invite. All opinions are my own personal views. Photos courtesy of Basic Invite. Thank you for supporting the brands I love, which also helps support thesassylife! 

How To Dry Shampoo Your Hair–The Right Way

How to Dry Shampoo Your Hair The Right WayOkay ladies, we need to have a chat about dry shampoo. We all know that it’s a godsend and it’s totally changed the way we think about washing our hair, but let’s be real–we’re all really picky about our dry shampoos and our routines.

If your hair type is anything like mine–dark, fine, oily hair, you probably feel the need to wash your hair frequently. I used to wash my hair every day but thanks to dry shampoo, I only need to wash my hair every 2-3 days. It’s crazy how much time it saves. Needless to say, I love using it.

Finding the right dry shampoo for my hair wasn’t easy though. It took me a while to get a routine down and to change my routine depending on the season. There are formulas out there we absolutely adore and others we despise and nearly cry over for making our greasy hair somehow look worse.

So, let’s talk about dry shampoo and cover the basics!

I’m going to go with the assumption that you know the basics, but if you don’t, here’s the simplified version of how to dry shampoo your hair:

For aerosol sprays, spray 10-12 inches away from the hair and scalp. Wait a minute or two and then massage the product into your hair and brush out any residue.

What type of formula should you use?

Good question. There are plenty out of choices out there–white powders, dark powders, clear formulas. Personally, I’ve had great luck with Klorane’s dry shampoos. Out of all of them, I prefer the non-aerosol Klorane Dry Shampoo since it doesn’t run out as quickly as the spray formulas. Dry shampoo tends to be quite expensive, so it’s good to save where I can.

Do some research on what might work for your hair and definitely read customer reviews. More expensive doesn’t necessarily mean better dry shampoo.

You could also sign up for beauty boxes that provide dry shampoo samples. I tried out quite a few dry shampoos from Birchbox before landing on the Klorane one that I like so much.

Aerosol Vs. Non-Aerosol?

Aerosol formulas are easy to apply. They work just like hairspray. Non-Aerosol dry shampoos require a little more work. You need to use your fingers to massage the powder into your hair and scalp. It’s a little messy, but the bottles tend to last much longer than aerosol bottles. In my experience, I could finish an aerosol bottle in 2-3 weeks, while a non-aerosol dry shampoo lasts me 6-8 weeks.

Apply more dry shampoo to areas that are heavily visible (the top of your hair) and areas that tend to get greasy quickly (roots, hair close  to the face). You should definitely concentrate how much product you use in areas you KNOW get greasy!

When should you dry shampoo your hair? (If there is one thing you take away from this post, let it be this)

According to my stylist, you should use dry shampoo the same way you use deodorant–before you smell or sweat. It’s best used to prevent greasy, flat hair.

That means that yes, you should apply dry shampoo to your freshly styled hair on day one. Depending on your hair, you could probably add dry shampoo daily while getting ready for the day in between washes. If you have extra oily hair like me, it’s also great to apply before going to the gym, or before going to bed.

If I don’t dry shampoo my hair correctly on day one, I may end up washing my hair sooner than I would have liked.

This is the key to making the most of your dry shampoo!

Help! My hair and scalp are getting dry!

Since you aren’t exposing your hair to much water and you’re using a powder to soak up excess oil and grease your scalp naturally produces, this is actually a common issue. Use a light oil to massage into your scalp before your next wash. Also, you can gently apply some oil to the dry ends of your hair to give them some life and moisture.

You can also purchase some dry conditioner to go along with your dry shampoo, but there aren’t to many on the market, and generally a hair oil does the trick.


There you go–those are some of the basics behind dry shampooing your hair the right way! Do you have any tips to add?

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. 

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