Since April is considered the “official” month for flowers and showers, we’ve decided to begin our Spring cleaning with one of the most important organs we possess…Our skin.
Due to the new season, we would like to start anew…Fresh face and body, supple lips, pops of color for our nails and light, sweet scents for our daily sashay. These products have set the scene in motion:
1. GUERLAIN – Super Aqua Day – Light, fresh, invigorating…The simple pleasures of beaming, beautiful skin.
2. L’OCCITANE – Touting a mix of tangy and sweet, this lip balm will keep your luscious lips soft, supple and ready for action.
3. PACIFICA – Mediterranean Fig – A luxurious Sandalwood base, with a blend of sweet Fig, Palm, Cyclamen, Moss and Clove. Yum…Yum.
4. KIKI de MONTPARNASSE – Dry Body Oil – I stumbled on this product while rambling through my friends cabinet searching for a moisturizer that wasn’t too overpowering. With a balance of the light scent and the oxymoron “dry oil” moniker (which is so true), it is PERFECT.
5. SALLY HANSEN – Salon Effects – “Collide – O – Scope” – Due to my pregnancy and the overbearing smells of nail salons in the past few months, the Salon Effects product by Sally Hansen has been my refuge from boring clean nails. Fabulous designs!!! LOVE.
6. HELLO KITTY – Noir Eye Shadow and Lip Gloss Palette – With 25 eyeshadows and 10 lip gloss selections, you’re covered from morning, noon and night.
7. CLARINS – Tonic Bath & Shower Concentrate – Since being pregnant, there are very few scents that I can endure, be it shower gel, lotions or even deodorant. A friend suggested the Clarins brand and the fresh clean scent was the prescription for my sensitive nose woes.
Due to the cogitated chaos of the coverage we dole out daily, we neglected to dish on the SEPHORA – Meatpacking District – Grand Opening held here in New York City. I know it’s RIDICULOUSLY late, but I wanted to share some “FAB Finds” discovered during our walk through:
TOKIDOKI – Being a visual person, this brands packaging drew my attention IMMEDIATELY!!! Known for their eclectic apparel, the animé inspiration intermingled with POPS of color and kitschy characters secured my need to sample the goods.
PAPERSELF – Created by London based designer, Chunwei Liao, these eyelashes are true works of art!!! The regular “faux” lash is so passé..With styles ranging from “The Clown” to “Peacocks” and “Peach Blossoms”, these will be sold OUT, better stock up now!!!
URBAN DECAY – Obediently following the exemplary advice from the fabulous Kevyn Aucoin (R.I.P.), I’ve been religiously using my Shu Uemura eyelash curlers for years…Well, the cutting – edge contraption from URBAN DECAY has been needling me…I have to test it out right??? Dubbed the “REVOLUTION”, this new and improved device has eliminated the bars usually found in lash curlers and replaced them with an open cage…Will they work wonders??? I’ll keep you posted!!!
21 DROPS – 100% natural, organic, therapeutic essential oils…That’s all of it in a nutshell. And the selection gets right to the point, with names like Strength, Uplift, Calm and Focus. OR, if your day is not going too well, you also have choices like Headache, Hangover, PMS or Pain Relief…Either way, the end result should be an improvement.
Stay tuned for the update after I test them out…
Want to get in shape??? Well, as you know, there are various ways…Personal trainer, ZUMBA, aerobics class or mass minutes on the elliptical…Ugghhh!!!
Luckily, there’s an alternative, BODY GROOVE. (i.e, pole dance class). Yes…Yes…It’s sounds risqué and provocative, but let’s indulge for a second…
My FAB friend audited a class and reported that it could easily be deemed an Olympic sport due to the intensity. The morning after, her entire body throbbed from the full workout. Hmmmm…Sounds painful.
Nevertheless…The 2 hour class is a mix of beginners and intermediate students. BEWARE…Bruising will occur (arms and thighs), but the consensus from the regulars confirm that the AMAZING results are worth it!!! And, as they say, NO PAIN…NO GAIN.
Hey, let’s face it, we’ve done other things FAR more painful for beauty. Right???
Our beauty must haves for the season are small enhancements that garner grand impressions. Morning, Noon or Night, these are just a few that will compliment any look:
SALLY HANSEN – What’s the greatest thing since sliced bread??? No it doesn’t begin with an “I”…( I – Phone/Pad/Pod)…Give up??? It’s the nail polish appliqué…I’ve been wearing the ESSIE – “Ballet Slippers” hue for years. Why??? It’s simple, when I wore color on my nails, it magically transferred to the document that the V.P. had just requested, hence…Extra work for me…Now, the “nail” wonders have arrived!!! With color and design variety, easy application, extended wear and the low cost (compared to a manicure), Sally Hansen’s “Salon Effects” is an absolute MUST.
FENDI – Fan di FENDI – Housed in a signature Fendi phial with genuine metal hardware, the notes range from pear and peppercorns to patchouli and jasmine. This fragrance bestows a fruit scent with a pop of spice. Perfect for a cool Autumn day.
DRYBAR – The catchphrase says it all…”No Cuts. No Color. Just BLOWOUTS.” (Wash included, of course)…Born and bred in the Los Angeles area, the chain has slowly trickled Eastbound with salons in Texas, Arizona, Georgia and the Big Apple. You want a quick hair makeover before that industry party or the plethora of upcoming holiday parties??? Hurry and reserve your spot because the combination of high quality and low cost will equate to a definite wait list.
LIPSTICK – The lip gloss craze over the past few years clearly endangered the use of lipstick everywhere…Really, when is the last time you’ve purchased your favorite shade??? It’s been a while for me too, but it’s back and with the resurgence comes the need for patience and most importantly…A mirror. Let’s face it, with lip gloss you just glide it on and clear out your corners, but with lipstick it takes an ounce of skill and a steady hand. Some of my favorite shades for the season are: Iman – Jaguar/ Tom Ford – Violet Fatale/ YSL – Le Rouge/ Estee Lauder – Tiger Eye.
From the top to the tips and toes, your fabulous ensemble will be complete with a beauty boost.
Have you ever missed your spa, brow or nail appointment due to hectic schedules??? I’m sure many of you have worked later to get the jump on the next day or was overwhelmed with your child’s itinerary, which kicked your pamper plans right out the door…
Unfortunately, this happens to me pretty consistently…Luckily, I have a few suggestions to keep your unibrow at bay, along with other basic tweaks for feet, nails and skin:
CLARISONIC – When you just can’t seem to keep your facial appointment, this is a great addition to your beauty war chest that keeps your face clean, clear and looking fresh.
BURT’S BEES – Vitamin “E” is known to fight wrinkles and maintain soft, supple skin.
TWEEZERMAN – Normally, my form of brow maintenance is “Threading” – yes I LOVE it!!! But, when I can’t get to Myra (my brow guru), I make sure my Tweezerman is up to par and ready to go…
REVLON – Expert Effect All Around Pumice Stone – Similar to it’s shape, this beauty tool is great to have all year round, yes, it does the same as any other, but the ergonomic shape and grip should allow for a quicker AND easier home pedicure.
ARM & HAMMER – Baking Soda is most popular for its power in the refrigerator, toothpaste and the occasional baking ingredient, but in my household, it also gets praise for its gentle addition as a body scrub in the shower. Just add to your shower gel and scrub away the dirt and stress from an overbearing day.
LEMONS – When you’ve chipped your favorite nail polish and can’t find the same color in the store, if you opt to remove and wear clean nails before your next appointment, place your nail beds into some fresh squeezed fresh lemon juice. This will brighten your nails from top to bottom.
Every summer the temperatures seem to increase and luckily, the beauty products presented every year adapt to the hazardous changes in our precarious eco system.
This season, I have some new favorites that have helped minimize the heat, stress and UV rays for the largest organ we have…SKIN!!!
DERMALOGICA – Daily Microfoliant – While working with Jada Pinkett – Smith, she explained her skin regimen and I promised her I would try it…Well, I’ve been using and loving their products every since and the Daily Microfoliant has done wonders for my complexion this summer. I follow the cleanser with their Antioxidant Hydramist spray and Toner. AAAHHH!!! So FRESH…So CLEAN!!!
PANGEA ORGANICS – Egyptian Fennel with Grapefruit & Sweet Orange Lipcare – First it was lipstick (which is making it’s way back)…Then lipgloss…And now…Pangea Organics. Sometimes, I just want a clean lip…no high shine or color, Pangea has created organic lipcare that provides nutrients and simplistic luxury without all the pomp and circumstance…The scent??? HEAVENLY!!!
SHISEIDO – Extra Smooth Sun Protection Lotion SPF 38 PA++ When it comes to protection from the sun, I usually purchase sunscreen and call it a day, but this year, I decided to try a couple of new products and the Shiseido SPL is truly a wonderful edition to my summer regimen. Sheer, smooth and a sweet aromatic scent. LOVELY!!!
BATH & BODY WORKS – Stress Relief Oil- This is actually an “Oldie but Goodie” for me…For the past few summers, I purchase the Stress Relief set (Shower Gel/ Lotion/ Oil)…Maybe it’s the humidity, coupled with the hot concrete and subway platforms here in NYC because at the end of the day, there’s an unfathomable exhaustion…And honestly, after I shower, it’s like all the “STRESS” of the day has been washed away…REFRESHING!!!
In the past, my product purchase philosophy has followed the “try as many on the shelf as possible” technique…I think, for the most part, we’re all conditioned to compare and unfortunately, that leaves a bevy of products that go unused in our medicine cabinets when we find our favorites.
Rarely do I purchase the complete collection from one brand, after all, in my world, it’s not the norm…But, I thought that I would give it a try and determine if this was easier on my wallet AND bathroom storage space…
Well, O • P • I, has altered my stance (i.e., purchase philosophy)…We all LOVE their nail polish, but I had no idea that they carry a complete collection of scrubs, crèmes, masks, massage lotions and grooming accessories.
Unbelievable scents, luxurious feel and most importantly, ONE STOP SHOPPING…I’m converted…For my mani/pedi products at least!!!
AVOJUICE – Ginger Lily
NAIL ENVY – Nail Strengthener
NAIL LACQUER – Gargantuan Green Grape
MANI/ PEDI – Tropical Citrus Kit (Massage/ Mask/ Scrub)
FEET by O • P • I – Callus File
With the Spring solstice comes renewal and rejuvenation…It’s protocol, around here, to shake things up with new bath and body products or reinstate a classic that we used in previous seasons…
Our favorites, thus far, cover the gamut from sheer and featherweight to meringued and luxurious:
O • P • I – AvoJuice Skin Quenchers – Coconut Melon – This velvety, lightweight lotion has a phenomenal scent. Want to visit the Caribbean but short on cash??? The AvoJuice experience will make you feel like you’re there…WHOA!!!
LUSH – Sympathy for the Skin – Organic with an alluring soft vanilla scent, this mid weight frothy potion has the perfect balance of sheen without being oily. My entire family LOVES it!!!
NEUTROGENA – Light Sesame Oil – A classic…Yes, it’s oil, but no need to worry about it staining your clothes, it covers so light you’ll forget that you have it on…Until someone asks “What are you wearing?” The essence of the sesame oil is mesmerizing.
SEPHORA – Super Supreme Body Butter – Milky…Luscious…Creamy (i.e., Butter)…This body lotion lives up to it’s name. It is supremely rich and luxurious. Having a slight sheen and fresh aura, IT IS… “Lusty Pleasure”.
Winter is finally gone (so says the calendar), but it still feels like January here on the East Coast…
Nevertheless, Spring IS officially the season and we must prepare!!! So, it’s time to store the Winter footwear and dust off your flip flops and sandals…It’ll be 80° degrees in no time.
Yes…It’s mani / pedi time…My formula is simple…I abhor when my fingernail polish, fresh from the salon, chips…especially when I’ve opted to go with the same burst of color on the top and bottom…Well, now, I just keep my fingernail color simple and intensify my toes…
My picks range from POPS of neon to soft, subtle tones and of course the metallics…
CHANEL – Jade – a soft, gorgeous color that goes perfectly with almost any color you choose for your look of the day.
ESSIE – Real Simple – The name says it all…”Real Simple”…The ideal color for the nail, not too pink…not to white.
O • P • I – In My Back Pocket – Talk about a POP!!! It’s just the right amount of color AND I adore the density of the lacquer.
DIOR – Silver – LOVE the hue…Perfect for those evening rendezvous!!!
Regardless of the ups and downs of day to day hustle and bustle, there is one indulgence that I consider a staple to complete any look, perfume. Honestly, for me, a scent is mood altering…Sounds crazy, but it’s oh so true!!!
In my collection, there are many perfumes and oils, but only a few that are mainstays. For winter, I crave warm scents and two of my favorites are BOND No. 9 – Astor Place (and many others, the choices are SUPERB…) and THIERRY MUGLER’s Angel.
BOND No. 9 – ASTOR PLACE – Notes: Violet Leaf, Mandarin Zest, Freesia, Red poppy buds, Iris Root, Teakwood, Musk and Amber
THIERRY MUGLER – ANGEL – Notes: Bergamot, Hedione, Helional, Honey, Dewberry, Red Berries, Vanilla, Caramel, Patchouli, Chocolate, Coumarin
Yes…The new year has arrived and so have the resolutions…Which one is the most popular??? Getting into shape.
As you know, there are a plethora of ways to sculpt your frame back into your idea of the perfect shape. So, while sweating out the holiday calories you should be comfortable, entertained, incorporate a backup plan and have fun!!!
That said, the following are some of my favorites that will hopefully keep you on your resolution path:
NIKE – Nike Tech Running Capris/ Nike Free Run – soooooo comfortable!!!
AEROMAT BALL CHAIR – Ergonomic seating combines the benefits of exercise fitness ball and a rolling base. A desk chair, perfect for the missed workout.
ZUMBA FITNESS – Are you ready to party yourself into shape? It’s exhilarating, effective, easy-to-follow and Latin-inspired.
BEATS BY DRE – Just when you’re getting in the zone and pushing past the pain…What happens? Your earbuds fall out and you have to regroup and start again…Annoying right??? Well, Powerbeats Sport headphones are designed to stay securely in place, no matter how hard you work out.
Whether for a birthday, Father’s Day or Christmas, all men appreciate gifts once in a blue moon. In any case, technology, accessories (travel or personal) and an occasional spa day will always brighten his mood. Hey, your thoughtfulness may lead to extra goodies for you.
AUDEMARS PIGUET – Royal Oak Offshore Grand Prix Chronograph Watch
SAMSONITE – Alexander McQueen Collection – Carry On Luggage
In these slow economic times, we need to schedule moments out of our hectic days to award ourselves…After all, an affordable luxury here and there helps us keep going, right?!? Whether it’s as simple as a luscious lotion or heavenly brown sugar mani/pedi or as elaborate as a rugged deep tissue massage and an odd vagacial (i.e., Peach Smoothie), you can ALWAYS find something.
Well, here are a few that may suffice in your search for luxury on a budget: ENJOY!!!
LUSH – The Créme Anglaise body lotion is made with some of the finest ingredients. Infused with sweet orange oil, moisturizing natural butters blended with almonds and saffron, the world’s most expensive spice, gives it the authentically golden colour of real Creme Anglaise. ($45)
THE POLISH BAR – Brown Sugar Mani / Pedi – Sweet lemon soak follow your filing and shaping, cuticle treatment, sweet brown sugar exfoliation and lemon massage. YUM!!! (15% off on ALL services on Tuesdays & Wednesdays)
BODY MASSAGE – Don’t look for frills!!! This is for direct body massage. If you expect candles and cookies…DON’T. But, for an hour massage this is the perfect luxury. ($48)
HAVEN SPA NYC – Finally, clear your bikini area of in-growns. The Peach Smoothie treatment, we will gently cleanse the area with a special exfoliating AHA scrub, followed by an expert application of an acid peel to help free those trapped hairs and blocked pores. ($50)
It’s a MUST to have the staples for simple makeup enhancement when needed…For me, it’s a quick lip tint, perfectly clean eyebrows and being blessed with long eyelashes…a curler and mascara.
I was lucky to receive a couple of tips from the infamous makeup artist, Kevin Aucoin. His advice? Both the Shu Uemura curler and mascara should always be in the beauty bag. It was his favorite.
SHU UEMURA – Basic Mascara & Eyelash Curler
SMITH’s – Lip Balm – Minted Rose
TWEEZERMAN – Luxe Edition Crystal Slant Tweezer
All can be found at SEPHORA.
Have you jumped on the bandwagon yet??? Unfortunately, the purchase of Sunday newspapers have another reason for their possible fade into oblivion…Online “Lifestyle” COUPONS!!!
Yes, we’re aware of all the supermarket coupon sites (couponmom.com/ couponpages.com/ thegrocerygame.com, etc.), but these sites are different. The pure premise of offering DEEP discounts from any and every service…
Case in point, one of my friends relayed that she purchased her Christmas tree from the Groupon site. Along with half price, she also gets delivery AND set up services!!! Can you beat that??? I think not…
But, it gets better, the variety of coupons are unlimited!!! From dance classes, facials and fresh produce to museums, sports games and botox. The deals run the full gamut. What a FANTASTIC idea…DON’T MISS OUT!!!