#YOLOBEB 2017 Scholarship Winner

What does YOLO mean to you? The expression YOLO was originally coined by rap mogul, Drake and stands for ‘You Only Live Once.’ The acronym underwent a meteoric rise to popularity after it was introduced by the rapper. Pop culture’s use of the term was rather shallow; often acting as a cry for teens attempting to justify irresponsible actions.

But not for everybody – What may have started as a rash justification for acting irrationally  meant a little more to some.

At Bella Ella, we found that some people have found the best side of the expression, taking it to heart and using it to motivate themselves to live a life that contributes to the world and that they can look at with pride.

We wanted to help those people achieve their goals, so we put together a scholarship for college students and seniors in high school – asking them to give us their best version of #YOLO and what it meant to them. The instructions were simple, post a picture, give us your version, and tag #YOLOBEB so we would see the post. The winner would win $500 to help with school expenses and help them pursue their passion.

Contestant after contestant, we were continually impressed with the quality of the submissions and the attitude of these outstanding contestants. Selecting the winner turned out to be a tough ask!

In the end, one contestant, in particular, stood out to us; Mandy Coulam submitted an outstanding post, and we think anyone that sees her version of #YOLOBEB will find motivation through her picture and caption.

Mandy’s original caption read:

Although I won’t be the first, I will be a part of the first generation to graduate from college in my family. The term “YOLO” has greatly shaped me through the trial of being a minority. We only snagged this one moment to serve, to learn, to grow. Seize it! I once heard, “it’s not about how long you live, it’s about how you live.” I know that to be true. I seek for pressure, so I might find the diamonds within myself. There is no chance we will fail if we continue to press on each day!

So, thank you, Mandy! We appreciate your persevering attitude and your passion for making the most out of life. We hope you continue to embrace your version of #YOLOBEB and inspire others.

What’s in Your Closet? Survey Reveals Americans’ Feelings Towards Their Wardrobes

With the start of spring upon us, we knew that it was time to start cleaning out our closets and shopping for a new spring wardrobe. Taking a look at our closets made us wonder about the hidden closet habits of our fellow Americans. What do people spend on additions to their closet each season? How do most people organize their clothes? Dying to get answers, we conducted a survey of thousands of Americans to reveal their closet tendencies. You can find some of the most intriguing results below.

Percentage of Wardrobe Worn in Last 6 Months

We were happy to find out that we aren’t the only ones guilty of buying clothes and never actually wearing them. More than 15% of women and nearly 20% of men said that they’ve only worn 10% or less of their closet in the last 6 months.

Women's Shoe Ownership by Region

With so many shoes options on the market, it can be difficult to keep a shoe collection to the minimum. While the majority of respondents claimed to own 10 or less pairs of shoes, around 12% of midwest women own 50 or more pairs. The women from the west seem to be the most minimalistic. This is a stark difference from celebrities like Kim Kardashian who are rumored to own hundreds of pairs of shoes!

Average Dollar Amount Spent on Shoes in the US

It turns out that our survey respondents were frugal shoppers, with around 25% stating that they spend an average of $30 or less on a pair of shoes. Less than 5% said they spend more than $300 on new kicks.

Average Dollar Amount Spent on Shoes in the US- Men vs. Women

Interestingly, men seem to be more willing to splurge on their shoes. Over 40% of male respondents spend an average of $51-$100 on shoes compared to less than 25% of females.

Shoe Ownership in the US- Men vs. Women

Although males might be willing to fork out more cash on their shoes, they typically own fewer shoes than women. Perhaps they value quality over quantity. Nearly 11% of women respondents own 21-30 pairs compared to only 2% of men.

Women's Shoe Ownership in the US by Region

It seems like women from the West have different opinions on shoe ownership than women from the South. Over 35% of western women own 5 or less compared to less than 25% of southerners. Meanwhile, nearly 10% of Southern gals own more than 50 pairs while only 5% of Westerners own that many.

Average Amount Spent on Seasonal Wardrobe Additions by Region

Although there were more obvious differences in shoe ownership by region, most of the country can agree that they will spend less than $50 on new clothes each season.

Average Time Spent Selecting an Outfit- Men vs. Women

Not surprisingly, women seem to spend a little more time than men when it comes to picking out their outfits. Approximately 12% of women said that they spend 11-20 minutes on selecting the perfect look compared to 5% of men.

Average Time Spent Selecting Outfit by Region

It seems like personal style and first impressions truly matters in the South. Our survey results revealed that women from the South were most likely to spend more than 30 minutes picking an outfit for the day.

Percentage of Americans Who Have Hidden a Purchase from Their Partner

While the majority of our respondents claim to be completely truthful to their spouse, women were more likely than men to hide a clothing purchase. 24% of women have hidden a purchase from their partner while only 15% of men have.

Most Common Ways to Organize a Closet- Men vs. Women

When it comes to closet organization, both genders can agree that the best way is to sort by type of clothing. Men were slightly more likely to organize by season while women were more likely to organize by color.

Does Your Closet Stress You Out?

Closets can be a bit overwhelming. There are so many options of what to wear, how to organize it, and what to purchase, but our respondents seemed to have the stress under control: 46% of females and 56% of males said that their closets do not stress them out.

Now that we’ve uncovered the secret closet habits of the average American, where do you stand on your relationship with your closet? Do you agree with what our respondents said or do you feel differently about your wardrobe? Let us know in the comments below.