Monday, August 30, 2010

Treat Yourself and Let It Grow: Feel Good Websites

With all the hustle and bustle women and men come in contact with each day, it's important for us to take the time to de-stress, renew and spend a few moments with ourselves to regain our perspective, decide who we are, what we want to accomplish and create our lives purposefully.  Here's a little help reconnecting.


Learn:  about some of the most eco-conscious iPhone apps
Check Out:  the charity and volunteer guides
Discover:  work-at-home opportunities that might actually work

What do you want to do today? This site will help you figure it out, with links to possibilities in categories as wide-ranging as "Change the World," "See the World," "Go Green," "Cook and Entertain" and "Nourish Mind and Body."  You can also drop in on interviews with inspiring people, courtesy of the video links at Inspiration Lounge TV.


Learn:  how to set realistic, achievable goals
Check Out:  what others have found about being happy
Discover:  that you've actually acquired a lot of wisdom on the road to adulthood

The offshoot of Gretchen Rubin's book The Happiness Project: Or Why I Spent a Year Trying to Sing in the Morning, Clean My Closets, Fight Right, Read Aristotle and Generally Have More Fun (Harper, 2009) is the perfect place for igniting ideas, organizing tasks and getting more aggressive about whatever it is you deem most important.  Post your own resolutions or get inspried by other members' first.  No matter which of the eight tools you choose, you'll have just what you need to construct a virtual shrine to your own well-being.


Learn:  how and why to become a morning person
Check Out: 20 ways to get or stay motivated
Discover:  what to do if you're in a slump

Ready, set, simplify!  The thrice-weekly posts from writer/runner/vegan Leo Babauta, author of The Power of Less: The Fine Art of Limiting Yourself to the Essential ... in Business and in Life (Hyperion, 2008), along with an eclectic array of guest bloggers, offer indispensible advice on cutting out chaos and streamlining everything from your fitness goals to your family life.


Learn:  about proper escalator etiquette
Check Out: The Book of Awesome (AEB/Putnam, 2010), the book based on the blog
Discover:  a truly delightful way to filter spam

It's the blog that launched a multimillion smiles, with regular posts about the minutiae of everday life - from "high-fiving babies" to "wordless apologies."  Toronto-based human resources worker Neil Pasricha launched the site to create an escape from the bad news of the world and remind us that there are plenty of reasons to feel good. Come up with your own list of things that make you go ahhh!

The offerings and excerpts above were taken from Vivify's May/June 2010 edition as written by Alexa Joy Sherman.  The offering below is a personal inspiration of my own and one I'd like to share with all of you.


I've introduced you to this diverse group of influential and inspirational men and women before.  You know them.  Among them: Richard Branson (Virgin empire), Peter Gabriel (singer/songwriter/musician/genius ... ok, so that last descriptor is mine, but he certainly is), the two men along with Nelson Mandela are the founding entities of The Elders and since their original conversation years ago they've grown to include Desmond Tutu, Jimmy Carter, Graça Machel, Mary Robinson, Kofi Annan, Ela Bhatt and others.

The story of The Elders (aka The Global Elders) started in a conversation between the entrepreneur Richard Branson and the musician Peter Gabriel. The idea they discussed was a simple one. In an increasingly interdependent world – a global village – could a small, dedicated group of independent elders help to resolve global problems and ease human suffering?

The Elders are an independent group of eminent global leaders, brought together by Nelson Mandela, who offer their collective influence and experience to support peace building, help address major causes of human suffering and promote the shared interests of humanity.

"The Elders can speak freely and boldly, working both publicly and behind the scenes. They will reach out to those who most need their help. They will support courage where there is fear, foster agreement where there is conflict and inspire hope where there is despair." Nelson Mandela.


So there's a good bit here to get you started and then some.  Hope you find these sites as enjoyable, refreshing and inspirational as I do. Enjoy! xo

images/source: Vivify (May/June); The Elders

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Glo: A Look at The New Smokey Eye

Agyness Deyn

Now a classic look, the smoky eye is undeniably gorgeous. But all that black can feel heavy at times. That’s why we welcome fall’s colorful alternatives: Shadows in chocolate, taupe and burgundy are easy to wear and flattering on most, but give that same sultry effect as the original style.

“A smoky eye doesn’t have to be black,” explains celebrity makeup artist for Physician’s Formula Joanna Schlip. “Today’s colorful versions in navy, brown and even lavender look more modern.”

Forget the black-rimmed eyes that populated the red carpet in seasons past. Angelina Jolie proves that soft and subtle is elegant and in!

Deep burgundy shadow was swiped across brown liner for a super warm effect at Roberto Cavalli. And we can’t help but notice the gorgeous gold highlighter on the inner corners — one of our favorite tricks for making eyes look wider in a snap!

Soft browns were blended with bronze and gold for Ashley Greene’s show-stopping look on the red carpet. Keeping the rest simple (a nude lip and no liner) makes the look fresh.

Muted gray lids, arched brows and a bit of highlighter gave Zoe Saldana an ethereal look at the Met Gala. Adding simple, pulled-back hair completes this look of beauty.

source: glo.msn

Friday, August 27, 2010

QVC 26 Hours of Best of Beauty!!!

Enjoy 26 hours of QVC's best-selling beauty brands, customer top-rated items, exclusives, must haves and more during QVC's biggest beauty event ever.

What brands are there?
Oh so many and more than what is shown here: Philosophy, Josie Maran, Mally, Tarina Tarantino, Kate Somerville, Lisa Hoffman, Smashbox, Kiehl's.

Even better ... you'll be treated to extra special pricing, a Today's Special Value with Clarisonic's Mia Cleansing System in gorgeous new and exclusive to QVC colors, easy payments so you can pay a little now and a little later on.

AND ... you'll get to discover QVC's 2010 Customer Choice Beauty Awards winners!

Watch QVC beginning Friday, 8/27 at 10 pm and through the whole day Saturday, 8/28/10 for all the wonderful possibilites. or you can find even more on Enjoy, angels! xo

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Super Hot Fashionista Nail Divas Ginger + Liz

What nail brand is lighting the fire of many a beauty addict, fashionista, celebrity and tweep alike? Ginger + Liz!

You're going to be hearing a LOT more about this fab beauty brand in the coming season, and if you're a twitter fiend you're already well aware of Ginger + Liz Colour Collection. They are setting the twitterverse ablaze with love shared from their instant fans.  I say "instant" as it seems these ladies certainly have the chemistry needed to attract a loyal following.  Style queen herself Rachel Zoe has been known to don the delicious polishes, as has Rihanna, Eva Longoria, a Kardashian sister or two, Beyonce' and well the list goes on and on. Understandable. Here's why.

Ginger + Liz's nail lacquers are reminiscent of candy coated loveliness.  Can that be a description? Sure it can.  However it's not only the visual beauty of the polishes that appeal to so many devout beauty industry and celebrity divas.  The polishes are vegan friendly and toxin free, therefore garnering a well deserved appreciation.  That the colors are right on trend certainly doesn't lose them any fans either.

L-R: Swagger, Got My Groove Back, Boy Toy and Tough Luxe (click images to enlarge for detail)

These are the particular shades enjoying a huge following at the present mo'.  Swagger is a sexy, tough luxe metallic with rose gold undertones. Rock Glam, Casual Chic and Bohemian styles of dress are perfect contenders for Swagger. And apparently Rachel Zoe agrees as this is the little gem she raves about in The Zoe Report.  Got My Groove Back is Swagger's big sister and she can handle it all. Not for the faint at heart, Got My Groove Back is a gold foil metallic that looks good on every haute girl!  Boy Toy is a fun and flirty robin egg blue shade with an aquamarine base. The peacefully cool shade is a mix of relaxed bohemian and pretty prepster. Tough Luxe is army green with a feisty attitude…think Troop Beverly Hills. This deep dark forest green hue is infused with a beautiful shimmery gold that keeps the dark colour from looking drab. A favorite of the Bohemian and Rock Glam trendsetters, the colour lends a hint of rebellion to any ensemble.

click to enlarge for better detail

New to the collection are Blowin' Money Fast (dark emerald green metallic), Ivy League (creamy, bright pastel minty green), Not on the First Date (taupe with a little kick of creamy lavender) and Tuck Me In (metallic silvery color sister of Swagger and Got My Groove Back).

S. Liz Pickett (L) and H. Ginger Johnson (R)

The brand was created by model/author S. Liz Pickett and entrepreneur H. Ginger Johnson. Ginger and Liz have a decade of individually unique experiences in the fashion, beauty, and marketing industries, which fueled by their insatiable love for fashion and beauty, led to the development of the Ginger + Liz Colour Collection. They were quick to call the matte nail trend before many last year and have kept ahead of trend never looking back.

Looking forward to bringing you more delicious-ness from Ginger + Liz near future.  In the meantime, please do check out their gorgeous nail collection of fabulous colors (retailing about $12/bottle) at

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Relic Soap Company: Divinely Created Artisan Soaps

I'm a bit of a homemade soap addict!  Give me the choice of something I can buy in a store and someone's handmade variety with goat's milk and essential oils and I'll take the latter every time.  I like the visual appeal, the aromas of homemade soaps, the feel of their usually creamy lather on my skin and just the notion that they've been made by someone's hand, tenderly, lovingly and creatively. 

I stumbled about a soap diva perusing etsy not long ago and decided I had to try this woman's soaps.  They called out to me ... haunted my dreams ... I could smell them before they even ended up in my order cart.

Allow me to introduce you to Relic Soap Company

Relic Soap Company is a family-owned business that specializes in creating a one of a kind natural artisan soap that nourishes the body and dazzles the senses. Their natural soaps are cruelty-free and vegetarian-friendly. Most are vegan. Each soap has a complete ingredient listing. Their soaps are NEVER tested on animals!

Each bar of soap is packaged in an American-made virgin cotton cloth bag ready for gift-giving or to scent your linens before use. One exception - their salt bars, which are phenomenal by the way, are sometimes too large for the bags and are packaged in attractive glassine bags when needed.

I had trouble deciding which to try, and so opted for Karen's "Any 4 Bars for $20" offer.  Wow! What an incredible deal!  These are nice, big bars of goodness, each having a distinct scent, feel, look, texture all their own and I'm loving every single one of them.

Here, a sampling depiction of some of the ones I ordered, but there are many more to choose from at Relic Soap Company:


The first in their line of sea salt bars. Relic Soap spared nothing in this bar - adding tons of spa-quality ingredients to it. The bottom blue layer is chocked full of detoxifying dead sea mud while the top blue layer contains vitamin-rich Atlantic Sea kelp to nourish your skin. While this bar sloughs off dead skin cells and polishes your body to a glow, it cleanses with conditioning coconut and olive oils and invigorates with a brisk blend of citrus, lavender, mints, and other herbs. Froth makes an excellent after-shave bar, making your legs look and feel magnificent! Their sea salt bars are an eco-friendly alternative since there's no plastic or glass packaging to recycle. 100% biodegradable and 100% natural! I'm aboslutely loving this one!


Karen blended crisp lemongrass essential oil with various citrus and earthy essential oils for a gorgeous stick-to-your-skin fragrance. To make this soap extraordinary, they layered each soap with four distinct, Indonesian-inspired ingredients. Enjoy vitamin-rich banana, smooth coconut milk, silky yet exfoliating adzuki bean and detoxifying green tea leaves. Oh my gosh, are you dying to try this yet? Yummmmmm.


Due to popular demand of their debut sea salt bar, Froth, Relic Soap expanded their line to include some of their popular conventional soap scents, and Lavender Mint was surely a favorite to many Relic Soap fans.  In this bar, they blend sweet lavender essential oil with peppermint and spearmint oils for an instant pick up. Banish the blahs while restoring your glow!


This is the bar that first called me by name! I even waited a bit longer for the shipment so I could have a fresh batch of this soap in the order. I just couldn't wait to dive into its decadence; so as soon as my lovely package arrived, I drew the soap from its drawstring cloth bag, carried it with me to the bar whiffing its delightful aroma with every step, then took full advantage a nice long soak in the bar-created patchouli waters. Oh my gosh, it was orgasmic! 

Enough of my experience, though, here's what you can expect from Hippie Chick.  The official scent of the 60's, but better. They use aged, smooth patchouli oil for an amazingly warm aroma. Relic Soap colors this soap with mineral colorants and mica, not fake, articificial dyes. Ready to pull your hair out?  This is the bar to grab to be transcended to a place altogether peaceful. Ohm...


"If this bar doesn't get you clean, you're not doing it right!" was proclaimed by one of their farmers market customers.

This bar may be a workhorse, yet equally lovely for its fragrance and beauty. Half a dozen various citrus oils team up with spearmint oil to degrease and refresh your skin after a hard day's work. Ground luffa, coarse ground corn meal, kaolin clay and poppy seeds offer astonishing scrub power. They add a sprinkle of vibrant blue larkspur petals to the top of each bar making this bar a gorgeous addition to anyone's soap dish.

Any wonder why I'm in love with this gem on God's green earth? Relic Soap Company bars come sweetly packaged in cloth drawstring bags and range from about 4.5 oz - 5 oz per bar. They're nice and big and long-lasting.  Each sells for around $6 or choose to buy 4 bars for $20. Visit Relic Soap Company online and be sure to "LIKE" them on their Facebook page as well!

FYI -- just a little note that Relic Soap is on vacay until 8/31, but they'll be back and ready to dole out their bars to you in no time flat! xo

Tuesday, August 24, 2010


This is one of those sweet moments. When one spots an Urban Decay SALE alert, that's great; but when one spots an Urban Decay GIVEAWAY in conjunction with a sale (up to 75% off!) - well, that's just something to squeel about. And squeel I did!

Urban Decay is beauty with an edge. Known for their innovative products, high-quality ingredients, and risqué shade names, Urban Decay injects femininity, danger and fun into everything they create.

Urban Decay backstage for Fall 2010 photoshoot

Urban Decay Naked Palette - NEW for Fall 2010!

From the mind-blowing array of eye products, to one of the widest shade ranges available, to their cult favorites we can't live without, Urban Decay has stayed on the forefront of cosmetics for over a decade.

Love animals? So does Urban Decay!  Urban Decay has been 100% cruelty-free since day one!
Urban Decay is coming to HauteLook and in anticipation of the event, the two want to do something extra special for their fans! {hands waving wildly in the air} They'll be giving away (1) $500 HauteLook Shopping Spree AND Urban Decay Gift Bag (valued at $500).

1) Go to Urban Decay's Facebook Page and click Sweepstakes
2) Click the "Enter to Win" tab
3) Become a fan of ("like") HauteLook and Urban Decay on Facebook
4) Fill out the entry form and click Submit!

The sweepstakes ends Wed., 8/25/10. One lucky winner will be chosen on Thursday, 8/26/10. One entry per person.

(registration is free if not already a member and takes 3 seconds)

photos: Urban Decay (NOTE: products shown are not necessarily included in the sale)

Hot and Humid? Secret Clinical Strength Waterproof to the Rescue!

Living down here in the tropical (read: blistering hot and uncomfortably humid) climate of The Big Easy, it's a huge relief to find a deodorant that actually keeps one dry and fresh smelling. Yes, we're big enough to admit it; we get sticky, yucky and all perspiry just like the fellas do.  Can one have any control over that in 100+ degree weather?  Me thinks not.

I'd tried Secret Clinical Strength maybe a year or so ago and liked it very much, but I was intrigued to have gotten my hands on a Waterproof version to test over the summer.  Intrigued and pleasantly surprised, it turns out, as I find this version serves even better in the sweltering humid heat we have in New Orleans. 

Now I believe Secret actually recommends we apply this at night, however I've used it as I would any other anti-perspirant/deodorant and apply it in the morning before getting dressed.  The texture of the product is a bit "creamier" than regular solid deodorant.  It glides effortlessly on the skin.  It has been extremely effective in keeping me not only dry (a huge feat, I assure you down south) but odor-free, a blessed appreciation to be sure.

FAQ's - Secret Says:

What is Secret Clinical Strength Waterproof?
It's the latest in the Secret Clinical Strength boutique and contains an all-day formula that provides waterproof wetness protection. The advanced solid's H20Guard technology provides three layers of protection: clinically proven waterproof wetness protection, odor absorbing capsules that respond to humidity and heat, and skin soothing conditioners.

What's the difference between the Waterproof version and Secret's other Clinical Strength Deodorants?
The H20Guard's optimal level of a top-performing active ingredient that is robust and is not washed off by water (pools, rain, sweat). It has the optimal level of two ingredients that hard for water to remove yet still can be removed by typical soap or wash.  They hold to odor fighters on the skin even when skin gets wet and helps fight odor by absorbing them.

Allow me to include this little piece of goodness to those of you who want to know about removing something as strong as a clinical strength, even waterproof, deodorant from your delicate underarms while showering or bathing.  Tis a little jewel I discovered over a year ago that I still use to this day.  Clarsskin Underarm Cleanser contains chelating agents that effectively remove residue including the metallic salts, and uses no parabens, sulfates or DEA, etc. It's a "phenom" little product and I'm never without it in my shower! (read my review here for more information)

Awarded Best of Beauty by Allure, Secret's Clinical Strength products are available at mass merchandisers nationwide. You may also purchase Secret Clinical Strength Waterproof at a discounted price from, retailing at about $8.29 currently.



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