Lisa Stickley & Stephanie Johnson: Vanity Case Innovation

August 24th, 2011 Posted in accessories, beauty products, Cosmetics, Fashion | No Comments »

Cute little makeup cases excite me!  My current favorite is Stephanie Johnson’s Mumbai Collection.  I love seeing the new designs that people can dream up e.g. the double pocket, the tall vanity, etc!  Really wish Lisa Stickley would have more American stockists.  Paying for international shipping on top of an expensive vanity case is a killer =(!  I’m also waiting for someone to invent a stunning multi-section coupon case.  Below features a few that is both forward-thinking and beautiful…

*Photocredit: Anthropologie & Lisa Stickley

Lush Review: The Ex-Factor Bath Cocktail

August 19th, 2011 Posted in beauty products, Cosmetics, Lush Reviews, Spa Retreat | No Comments »

A perfect bath to chase away any blues (post-breakup or otherwise).  This bath cocktail has a citrus-lime fragrance punctuated by a muskiness/woodsiness.  It’s quite masculine; I didn’t mind though (kind of like sleeping in a boyfriend’s t-shirt).  Reminds me slightly of Aquolina’s Blue Sugar (would be great to use post-bath for guys).  Once I bought a small pot of vegan lotion dupe for Blue Sugar from Etsy as part of a sampler set and loved it!  I suggest this wonderful sky blue bath cocktail as an anytime detox soak or stress reliever…

1 Ex-Factor Bath Ballistic: Sweet, candy vanilla.  1 Ex-Factor will be more than enough; you can even use a 1/2 chunk.   Like most of Lush’s bath ballistics, this is a fast fizzer.

1/2 Blue Skies & Fluffy White Clouds Bubble Bar: This scent is similar to the Big Blue bath bomb only a little more mild and sweet.  At first whiff, there seems to be a nuttyness similar to those in chocolate candy bars e.g. Snickers.  Not sure if I was imaging this?  I think of it as the more masculine counterpart to The Comforter Bubble Bar.

  • Patchouli oil
  • Frankincense resinoid
  • Cinnamon leaf oil

1/3 Happy Blooming Bath Melt: Sweet scent which does remind me of candy cherries.  I loved Happy Blooming with the other elements I chose for this bath!

  • Passionflower
  • Dried cherries
  • Fresh passion fruit
  • Ylang ylang oil

 

 

*Photocredit: Lush Cosmetics

 

Pedicure Recommendations

August 16th, 2011 Posted in beauty products, Spa Retreat, Toiletries | No Comments »

This post is about some of the great affordable products I use for my at-home pedicures.  As an aside, I’m planning to review several Lush footcare products in the near future. I’m glad there are some quality products out there since I do greatly benefit from more frequent pedicures and don’t always want to go to salons to get them done.

Foot Pumice Bar:  I’ve been trying to Google the exact one I use to no avail =(.  Sorry.  I did manage to find something very much like it called Mr. Pumice Pumi Bar which can be purchased from Sally’s Beauty Supply or Amazon.com (~$1.99-$3.00).  Do your feet a favor and pick one up!  It really works very well!  It’s not too harsh and leaves my feet nice and smooth (heels and problem spots) and is the best I’ve ever used.  It’s washable and reusable; I just give it a quick rinse, tapping excess water off, and let it air dry.  Mine is a bright green.  I believe I may have purchased it from CVS.  Not sure if it’s part of their Essence of Beauty Collection?

Spongeables: With soap infused.  It cleanses, exfoliates, and moisturizes (~$5.00 each).  I’ve done a review previously regarding Spongeables.  It’s a must-have!  I generally purchase mine from CVS.

OPI Pedicure:  I’ve used Soak and Soften and really love both their scent and their affect on my skin.  Highly recommend them!  I also suggest for you to purchase a mini set or variety sampler.  It will run ~$45.00 for 4.2 fl.oz. trial size x 6 (e.g. Soak, Soften, Mask, Smooth, Scrub, & Massage).  You can find trial sets on eBay or just do a Google search.

*Photocredit: Mr. Pumice, Spongeables, & OPI

Lush Review: Tang Bath Cocktail

August 16th, 2011 Posted in beauty products, Lush Reviews, Spa Retreat, Toiletries | No Comments »

This bath cocktail is a small reward for all the recent organizational milestones reached so far and for the 5 big loads of laundry I did yesterday (quite exhausting).  Very Tang in color and scent (orange, citrusy).  This may seem rather strange, but the woodsiness of this bath also reminded me of pre-lit orange incense.  Here are the ingredients:

1 Donkey-Oaty Bath Bomb: Sweet floral.  Love that it’s in the shape of a Scottie dog.  Pink and gold tie-dye cuteness!  It’s a fragile bath bomb though.  Both mine arrived in broken bits but it was going into the bath anyway (just doesn’t make for the picture-perfect bath ballistic).

  • Ylang ylang flower infusion
  • Geranium oil
  • Tagetes oil
  • Gardenia extract

1 Gold Star Bubble Bar: Smells like lemon hard candy or Sprite pop with lemon.

  • Gardenia extract
  • Sandalwood oil
  • Frankincense oil
  • Golden stars
  • Golden edible lustre
  • Red golden glitter

1/2 MMM Melting Marshmallow Moments Bath Melt: Sweet floral scent.  Just in case you’re wondering, it’s very easily crumbled under running water.  I do sense the musk in it.

  • almond oil
  • chamomile powder
  • marigold powder
  • synthetic musk

*Recommended Soap: Sandstone soap or any of the lemon-based ones would be perfect.  I used Summer Pudding since it was still sitting in my soap dish.  Summer Pudding is also exfoliating with a delicious aroma of candied cherries.

*Photocredit: Lush Cosmetics


 

Storage Recommendation: The Container Store Like-It® Translucent Stacking Drawers

August 14th, 2011 Posted in Organization | No Comments »

Been loving The Container Store’s Like-It® Translucent Stacking Drawers!  Some models come in translucent white or translucent smoke to compliment your decor.  I’m impressed how sturdy they are as well as how much they can hold.  I’ve been storing toiletries e.g. bar soap, body butters, and massage bars in mine.  They are also ideal for storing cosmetics (including nail polish upright; see picture #3) and hair care products.

*Photocredit: The Container Store

Lush Massage Bars

August 14th, 2011 Posted in beauty products, Lush Reviews, Toiletries | No Comments »

Just some of my Lush favorites.  My top three are Soft Coeur (The Honeymooners), Shimmy Shimmy, and Glitterbug.  Please see past massage bar reviews.

 

*Photocredit: Lush Cosmetics

 

London Accessorize Haul

August 12th, 2011 Posted in accessories, Fashion, Jewelry | No Comments »

One night after a nice dinner at The Platform Bar & Restaurant in London (which I highly recommend), my husband and I walked across to admire the beautiful view at the promenade.  Unexpected to me, sandwiched in-between was a large shopping arcade.  I peeked into the store’s windows wishing the shops were still open (Boots, a cute British bookstore, clothing boutiques, and Accessorize).  The next morning was a race to reach Coventry at a decent time so it would not have worked out =(.  I also didn’t want to seem petty and kept quiet about this; after all we were on holiday, not a shopping expedition.  I knew that the last leg of our trip would bring us back to London before our flight home.  I secretly hoped that we could visit this arcade again and felt that if this was meant to be, it would happen.   My wish came true when my husband announced he wanted to tour the HMS Belfast (which was practically paces away).  Accessorize, as its name implies, is an accessories shop similar to our Claire’s or The Icing in the United States or New York with equally charming and inexpensive bits and baubles.  My husband didn’t have to mention it twice when we walked by that day so I raced in.  These were my loveliest of finds…

*Photocredit: NYCupcake via iPhone 4

*Haul pictures to post soon!  Check back please!

Lush Review: Cheer Up! Bath Cocktail

August 12th, 2011 Posted in beauty products, Lush Reviews, Spa Retreat, Toiletries | No Comments »

After a disappointing end result of Project Runway: Season 9 (and the elimination of my favored designer, Fallene Wells), I decided a Lush bath cocktail was in order though it was very late.  I’ve had the ingredients laid out since before vacation and boy did my feet need a good pumice scrub (which I saved for last)!  I would describe this as a slow to dissolve, very mild floral scented bath with sweetness reminiscent of white chrysanthemum tea with honey.  Also don’t be alarmed that the bath will look a little olivine murky; what it lacks in looks, it readily makes up in being moisturizing.

1 Happy Pill Bath Bomb: Sweet and citrusy. Slow fizz.  It’s one of Lush’s largest bath ballistics.  I could have used just half of it.

  • Olive Oil
  • Hemp Oil
  • Grapefruit Oil
  • Bergamot Oil
  • Frankincense Oil
  • Lemon Oil
  • Orange Flower Absolute
  • Mandarin Oil
  • Gardenia Extract


1 Dorothy Bubble Bar: Very mild floral.  Made me think of chamomile and lightly scented florals in general.

  • Ylang ylang oil
  • Orange flower
  • Gardenia extract

 


1/2 Floating Island Bath Melt: Mildly sweet floral scent.  Made the bath very moisturizing.  I mean, what bath melt doesn’t?  This one is a slow froth.  I’ve used this bath melt a few times already but now its scent reminds me of a Connecticut Muffin Angel Cake muffin =)

  • Almond oil
  • Sandlewood oil
  • Lemon oil

*Recommended Soap: Sandstone Soap (citrus scent, exfoliant)

I used Summer Pudding (exfoliant) soap since it was right in front of me.  Summer Pudding has a candy cherry scent.

*Photocredit: Lush Cosmetics

My London Cosmetic Haul

August 7th, 2011 Posted in Cosmetics | No Comments »

Before venturing to the United Kingdom, I fantasized about what cosmetic brands I wanted to buy.  Besides learning about a country or culture through its food & drink, I learn via its cosmetics.  The obvious choices were brands that were not readily available in the U.S.  I had narrowed the list down to Sleek, Gosh, Me Me Me, and Barry M.

It was off to London’s shopping district!  First stop, Boots =)  I ended up buying a cute owl necklace and hair scrunchy; surprising not one makeup item.  A few Boots associates were kind enough to point me to the right direction.  It was really SuperDrug that I wanted.  The next morning I happily trotted into Holborn’s SuperDrug and shopped to my heart’s content.  This was what I bought…

*Photocredit: NYCupcake

*Picture to follow soon.

Threadless

August 5th, 2011 Posted in Fashion | No Comments »

I was watching Project Runway: Season 9 the other night and quickly went nuts over Fallene Well’s pajama tee (which she used to complete her first runway project).  I did a quick Google search and discovered it’s “The Morning After” by Paul Southworth.  It’s an image that I find both disgusting and madly cute at the same time.  I found this tee on Threadless and had to order it!  It arrived yesterday (very quick shipping & delivery) and I’m wearing it now as I’m blogging.  I also love the feel of this tee (made of soft cotton with a good thickness).  Threadless products are all reasonably priced too.  Go and support the community of Threadless, with its multitude of talented artists from around the world.  You are bound to find something you will absolutely love!

*Photocredit: Threadless