Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Get Moving Tips for Women on the Go from Fitness Expert Kristin McGee

Kristin McGee courtesy of KristinMcGee.com

That's you, right? A woman on the go?  Sure is.  If you're like me, you scold yourself repeatedly throughout the day for not getting more movement in for the good of the ole bod.  Help has arrived!

Celebrity yoga and fitness instructor Kristin McGee shares quick tips for sneaking movement into your day this summer.  Google her, you'll see this lass knows her stuff.  Always happy to learn new, inspired ways to tender my body more healthy, I am so appreciative for these quick tips-on-the-go.

  • Rise and shine each morning with a set of high knee lifts
  • Carry, don't cart, your grocery bags and use their weight to do a few quick bicep curls to tone your arms
  • Take the stairs two at a time to sneak walking lunges into your daily routine (no elevators, girls)
  • Do 20 jumping jacks to get your heart rate up and blood pumping (fresh oxygen, please, feels great)

Here's another little tip for summer, ladies.  Degree Women launched a new wetness protection in March designed to start working before you even need it.  Degree Women motionSENSE is activated by motion first and is proved to help women stay ahead of perspiration.  It's currently my anti-perspirant/deodorant of choice - love the Fresh Energy scent - and is keeping me dry and comfy even in the sizzling hot, humid heat of down south New Orleans. That's a feat! Degree Women motionSENSE is available in drugstores nationwide and retails for approximately $4.69.

Vera Sweeney, Kristin McGee and Audrey McClelland

Want more?  You've got it!  Check out this quick 2 minute vid from Degree with Kristin giving more movement tips to two expert blogging angels (love them!), Vera Sweeney of I'm Not Obsessed and  Lady & the Blog and Audrey McClelland of Mom Generations.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Cool Down on Memorial Day with Caudalie Vinotherapie Spas

Caudalie Vinotherapie Spa at The Plaza is revamping its menus! Both their wine and spa treatment menus are getting a refresher for summer. 

Mathilde Thomas, Caudalie's Founder, hand selected the newest addition to the French Paradox Wine Lounge in the vibrant Wolffer Estate Rose'. Calling it "summer in a bottle," the rose' complements the current collection of Chateau Smith Haut Lafitte vintages and adds a sparkling twist perfect for the warmer months ahead. The rose' is filled with fresh fruit aromas of peach and pear, with hints of rose petal and bursts of crisp acidity.  You may partake of a glass of this sumptuous wine for $10 a glass.

And if that's not reason enough to visit them, here's yet another.  Wanting to cater to clients seeking beach body readiness, a new signature treatment has been designed to instantly refresh the body and ensure a flawless glow.  The Refreshing Body Polish treatment features the Caudalie Merlot Scrub massaged into the body, while the Vichy Shower rains down on the skin followed by a heated towel wrap.  Those unfamiliar with the scrub will be surprisingly delighted by this freshly made treatment using brown sugar, grape seed oil, essential oils of peppermint, sweet mint and lemon, body lotion and the Caudalie Firming Concentrate.  This treatment is perfect for firming, exfoliating and nourishing body skin. Magnifique!

The treatment is just 20 minutes, thus perfect for clients-on-the-go or as an add-on to any of the other spa treatments.  The ideal pre self-tanning treatment is a great way to beat the heat as the Body Polish has a cooling effect that leaves skin refreshed.

Caudalie Vinotherapie Spa is located on the 4th floor of The Plaza located at One West 58th Street in New York.  To book an appointment, you make call 212-265-3182.  Happy Memorial Day, gorgeous angels! xo

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Mother's Day Gifts of Beauty

One of the things I love about gifting with beauty is it truly is a gift that keeps on giving.  And each time the recipient uses that item, it reminds them of the one who gave it.  I find that's especially true when the giver takes the likes and desires of the recipient in mind.  What I mean by that, for instance, is if your mom has been complaining about itchy, dry, rough skin on her upper arms and you know she also enjoys citrus, a verbena scented body scrub would make such a special gift. Right? Of course, right.

With that in mind, here are a few products I can recommend to you for gifting, each with its own special properties.

Have a mom who loves flowers, perhaps even the traditional and lovely fragrance of roses?  I promise you, you cannot go wrong with Pomega5's Rose System.  Readers already know Pomega5 is one of my absolute most favorite skincare brand out there.  Based on using the highly coveted pomegranate seed oil, this is a family run company that takes time to create high quality, gorgeous, effective products, often receiving inspiration for their products from their extensive home garden.  There's not been a single item I've been even the slightest bit disappointed in. Everything I've tried I've loved, cherished and delighted in. Each product contains its very own special properties and each smells so delicious you can't wait to use them. I truly believe in this brand!

While 60% of us buy flowers for our moms every year, this year we can give her roses through the sure-to-make-her-feel-good Rose System that’s actually good for her. Pomega5’s Rose System makes you feel calm and refreshed, and the pure, organic ingredients will help regenerate skin to its youthful and bright complexion. Available exclusively direct from Pomega5.  $135 for the set.

Bulgarian Rose Moisturizing Beauty Bar (120 g)
Daily Revitalizing Concentrate (30 ampoules)
Bois de Rose Velvet Hydrating Cream (50 ml)

Amala Hydrate Spa Valise Set replenishes and sustains skin'­s moisture level with organic Egyptian Jasmine, renowned for its nourishing, smoothing and antioxidant benefits for skin. Amala's certified organic Jasmine is cultivated and custom distilled in Egypt by their own fair trade farm partner.  Your skin feels so refreshed, soothed and pampered. This is the gift of responsible, results-driven skincare. Rich in organic whole plants, the conveniently packaged, proven-effective treatments beautify the skin and benefit the earth.  Eco-luxe organic hemp and woven paper valise.  Available at Spirit Beauty Lounge.   $102 for the set.

Hydrating cream cleanser 1.7 oz.
Hydrating toner 1.7 oz.
Hydrating face cream 1 oz.

Offering innovative prescriptive skincare, Elemental Herbology products address the changes that occur in the skin as a result of seasonal, lifestyle and hormonal change. Formulated to help restore equilibrium, the brand is committed to helping their customers achieve healthy and radiant skin. They are performance focused, yielding that ‘feel good factor’, their products combine clinically-tested bio-actives with over one hundred unique plant, mineral and marine extracts and pure delicately scented flower oils.

This is the perfect introduction kit to give you a wonderful discovery of this fabulous skincare brand. Love, love, love Elemental Herbology.  I can't believe this kit is only $55.  Available at Beauty Bar.

Facial Glow Radiance Peel - Vitamin C/Papaya/Manuka Honey
This radiance peel is infused with a tropical cocktail of vitamins, enzymes and skin-brightening botanicals, to help exfoliate dead surface cells, stimulate cell metabolism and harmonise the skin tone to create a radiant and glowing complexion.
Facial Detox Puifying Mask - Malachite/Kaolin/Manuka Honey
Mineral rich organic Amazonian Clay helps eliminate toxins from the surface of the skin while gently exfoliating and softening. Although it has astringent properties it is not as dehydrating as conventional clays, leaving the skin soft, humidified and glowing.
Biodynamic Facial Souffle' - Rose Damask/Marine Collagen/Calendula
Rich in amino acids, collagen and reparative botanicals, this luxurious treatment mask helps soothe, plump, hydrate and repair parched skin to reveal a dewy, fresh and vibrant complexion.

If your mom doesn't own a Clarisonic yet, this is the p-e-r-f-e-c-t occasion to treat her to one. From the Clarisonic family of sonic skin-cleansing products, the one-button, one-speed, one-minute Mia is perfect for those wanting a convenient, less costly (from the traditional Clarisonic system), yet effective way to cleanse while traveling--or anytime. This award-winning waterproof, rechargeable, professional-caliber brush uses gentle sonic micro-massage action to cleanse deeply. It works so well, it helps other skin-care products absorb better. It cleans pores--loosening dirt, makeup, and oil as it reduces the appearance of pores and wrinkles. It's proven to remove six times more makeup than traditional superficial cleansing, allowing serums and moisturizers to absorb better. Skin is left soft, pampered, radiant, and younger-looking--without harsh abrasion or chemicals. It's so gentle, you can use it twice a day.

Clarisonic Mia Systems retail between $124 - $150 and are available worldwide.  I recommend purchasing from b-glowing (looove them! great customer service and they include fabulous samples) and QVC (sometimes available with easy pay options).

Handmade soaps, each with its own distinctive artistic flair and a childhood memory attached.  That's what Venezuelan-born Marianella Febres-Cordero has created with her gorgeous and luxurious line of soaps.  This is one of my very favorite places to shop when I have a gift to buy!  Each bar smells luscious and creates such a beautiful focal point, wherever you place it.  You just can't help but be transported to another place and time through the stories Marianella tells for each soap inspiration. Each bar is infused with its own special essential and fragrance oils. It's a sensual experience through and through. Truly lovely!

Current bars include:
Aranciata (my favorite) - Orange, Teakwood and Rosemary
Aura Elena (close 2nd) - Oak Moss, Coconut and Mulberry
Coqueta - Baby Powder, Vanilla and Grapefruit
Dama de la Noche - Lemon, Apple and the exotic Dama de la Noche flower
Desert Gardenia - Gardenia, Honey and Oak Moss
Lemonwood - Bois de Rose, Litsea Cubeba and Bergamot
Parchita - Passion Fruit, Polyantha Rose and Litsea Cubeba
Poncha Crema - Vanilla, Fig and Cinnamon
Sugar Cane Tea - Sugar Cane, Plum and Litsea Cubeba
Violet Fields - Violet, Bergamot and a hint of Menthol

Jaboneria Marianella bars (there's a men's line too) are available directly through them. $14

I love these ... and so unique. Love Lip Cracker contains a nourishing preservative-free balm that's been designed to melt at body temperature so it is easily absorbed into skin. With a rich formula packed with the earth's most moisturizing ingredients and an exotic blend of Monoi Oil, Rose Oil and Cocoa Butter, the balm hydrates lips, soothes and protects skin. Peace Eye Cracker contains a lovely little eye serum/cream that has garnered rave reviews for dark circle reduction and improvement in lines and undereye bags. The soothing blend of serum brightens and refreshes eyes using a fusion of regenerating and moisturizing glycerin, arnica, aloe vera and cucumber. Both are available at Beautyhabit. $14 each.

Blended with botanical essences, resins and balsams, Tallulah Jane scents are an ever-evolving olfactory experience. No two vintages are exactly alike so your Tallulah Jane scent is always unique; designed my nature - especially for you. Tallulah, their signature scent, is the most fabulous jasmine scent I've ever tried. Creamy jasmine notes and heady tuberose combine for a scent that is timeless yet so ultra cool! And be on the look out soon for a feature on their newest creation, Hope. I can't wait to tell you more about it and the company's generous collaboration with the American Cancer Society for their Pink & Black Tie Gala. Tallulah Jane perfumes are available at Spirit Beauty Lounge. $48 - $58

Such whimsical packaging, gorgeous formulas and sweet, decadent aromas are yours with a little purchase of Love + Toast or Tokyo Milk products. They feature an assortment of perfumes, soaps, lip balms and hand creams that are unlike any you've tried before. Experience scent combinations like mandarin tea, honey coconut, lemon mint, citrus gin blossom, or tantalize with a sophisticated blend of fresh greens, cassis, white iris and bronzed musk crushed and distilled to perfection. Love + Toast and Tokyo Milk and Tokyo Milk Dark are by beauty entrepreneur Margot Elena Wells, who also brought us Lollia. Her natural beauty line will be released soon, nectar + pollen - can't wait! Love + Toast and Tokyo Milk products are available at b-glowing and Beautyhabit. $6 - $28

Candles & Home Fragrance
Continue the heavenly scents experience for mom with a beautifully packaged candle or unique home fragrance idea.  Nothing warms the mood of a room or the essence of a soul quite like the candlelight.

Presented in their signature black Aedes gift box the Glow Box contains their popular Lime Coconut Sea Salt Exfoliator, Claus Porto's Tuberose soap and a L'Artisan Parfumeur votive candle.  Available at Aedes. $80

The exclusive and limited edition gift coffret contains three L'Artisan Parfumeur votives.  Les Best is composed of Orangers en Fleurs, Intérieur Figuier and Mûre Sauvage; Les Orientales is composed of Ambre, Thé et Pain d’Epices and Ile Bourbon. Available at Aedes. $60 (each set)

Flower Shop is a delightful scent of fresh-cut spring flowers - sweet lilac, pink freesia and hyacinth layered with cooling greens.  This 14.5 oz, 3-wick candle has a burn life of 40 - 65 hours and is available at Bath & Body Works. Fresh Bamboo is another fabulous scent - very clean smelling. Special Sale Price: 2 candles for $30 any assortment of scents (reg. $19.95 each).

Years of traversing the globe searching for extraordinary fragrances is the inspiration for Avenue Candle Collection; each unique candle brings the characteristics and mood of some of the most famous streets in Avenue's favorite cities into our homes.  Avenue's Regent Street highlights notes of Earl Grey Tea and Violet.  Bergamot Citrus and Black Tea leaves are married with a hint of honey and neroli for a deeply rich fragrance.  Available  at LAFCO New York. Burn time: 75 - 85 hours.  $48

Here's a divinely unique idea.  Santa Maria Novella Scented Tablets are 100% organic and natural essential oils mixed with beeswax from the fertile Tuscan fields and bee farms of Santa Maria Novella. Too beautiful to be hidden, tablets can be placed in drawers, hung in closets (ribbon is already attached) or simply left out in the open on a tray to freshen and scent the surrounding space. Tablets are completely safe and organic and will not stain clothing or fabrics, however wax will become malleable at very high room temperatures (85+ degrees F).  Lavender and rose oils, lavender blossoms and rose buds for a fresh romantic scent. Available at LAFCO New York, and also available in the scents of Orange/Cinnamon and Potpourri. $30

Wishing you and your mothers a most fabulous Mother's Day weekend!  xo

Sunday, May 1, 2011

ShopNBC: Day of Summer Beauty

These all day of beauty extravaganzas are always so much fun!  Not only are the newest of seasonal beauty items by top brands showcased, but we get the opportunity to see first-hand techniques and presenations on how to get flawless looks.  And with ShopNBC, you know you're always going to have mega opportunities for easy-pay options on days they feature nothing but beauty.

Here are a few selections in store for you from ShopNBC Day of Summer Beauty:

 (Retail $60) ~ Special Beauty Day Price: $49.09 (3 Easy Payments: $16.03)

I'm thrilled to see Cane + Austin's Glycolic Treatment Pads being offered.  I'd refer you to my review of this item in an earlier post.  I've seen real results in a very short time using these, so can highly recommend them to you.  These sugar cane infused pads were developed by dermatologist Craig Austin, MD as an effective one-step, at home exfroliating glycolic treatment, which helps rebuild collagen.

•Contains the purest, strongest and most effective form of glycolic that can be found on the market.
•Derived from natural sugar cane, these pads effectively exfoliate and retexture skin, revealing a clear, more radiant complexion.
•Experience a reduction in the appearance of pores.
•Clinical study participants saw an average of 27% reduction in the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
•Contains witch hazel for additional toning and tightening.
•Recommended for all skin types.

(Retail $60) ~ Special Beauty Day Price: $43.59   (2 Easy Payments: $21.80)

Ok, this I have to say I'm very interested to test drive.  This is a brand new item for ShopNBC and promised to safely and softly increase lip volume and size without injections, implants or chemicals. Hmmmm.

How do I use this?
Directions inform you to moisturize your face prior to use with a deep penetrating moisturizer. Wash Angel Lift Derma Lips before each use with an anti-plaque mouthwash. Wear under your upper lip along the gum line, just above your teeth.  They recommend wearing Angel Lift Derma Lips only for a few minutes at a time to check for any gum irritation. As your mouth begins to adapt to the strips as it would for any perioral device, the possibility of irritation is said to dissipate. Wear only one at a time. Optimally, work your way up to 30 minutes twice per day depending on the comfort level. The longer and more often you wear them, the more effectively they will work. It is reported that initially, most people find they need to use them regularly for three or four weeks, depending on the desired effect.

From Beverly Hills top dermatologist Simon Ouarian, MD (and touted by RHOBH Housewife Lisa Vanderpump - love her!), this cream will completely change your mind about sunscreen. Oh yes, you heard me, I said, "Completely!"  Here's why.  Sunblock Protect & Correct is SPF 40+ protection that simultaneously helps reduce redness (and appearance of rosacea), fine lines and discoloration while moisturizing skin.  It leaves a radiance to skin and does indeed cover nicely with its lightly tinted formula.  It's a paraben, sulfate, oil and fragrance free product.  You'll notice immediately it doesn't have the usual sunscreen smell.  This is a must-have item for anyone wanting to protect against sun damage AND create a flawless complexion all at the same time.  Just beautiful!

 click images to enlarge

This item is available during Beauty Day in a sweet little kit that includes Dr. Ourian's Epione Hydration Moisturizing Creme and the Sunblock for $96.87 (or 4 Easy Payments: $24.22).  This kit normally retails for $160.00.  I'm really hoping ShopNBC will offer the Sunblock Protect & Correct on its own in the future as well.

Beauty Day Price: $29.75 (2 Value Pays: $14.88)

Hard not to be enthusiastic about Dimitri James products as he is so charismatic, and rightly so, himself.  Rightly so as Dimitri truly does create wonderful products, not available anywhere else, and more affordable than similar products of the same high quality. There are lots of new Skinn Cosmetics items available for Beauty Day, but one item you want to be sure not to miss is his DermAppeal.  Bonus: It smells delicious and feels as if you've just been to a spa!

•Aluminum oxide free resurfacing and revitalizing treatment utilizes a naturally occurring mineral from the Dead Sea
•Along with Papaya and Pineapple Extracts to give you the benefits of a microdermabrasion treatment at the convenience of your own home
•Use once or twice a week for a softer, smoother, less lined, no pore look

Additionally, I must refer you to the video presentation (click link at left) to see a presentation on application and results after use. You'll see why I love this!

    l-r: Romance, Confident, Passion            t to b: Romance, Confident, Passion      Passion (top), Confident (b-left), Romance (b-right)

(Retail $63, $21 each if sold separately) ~ Special Beauty Day Price: $33

Ladies, the colors in this gloss kit are soooo beautiful and very sheer.  Don't let the darkness of the pigments in the tubes, or the glittery/shimmer distract you.  They apply beautifully, feel a bit tingly on the lips (adds fullness) and contains anti-aging peptides. Each shade is designed to work on all skin tones, so you can't go wrong whether you buy it as a gift or for yourself. Formulated with a polymeric network that forms a gel and this helps maximize the shine and clarity of color.  It feels so hydrating on the lips, and not at all sticky. It has great cushion and it is long lasting. Contains aloe and anti-aging antioxidants.

L - R: Romance, Confident, Passion

Celestine Signature Color Cosmetics is a brand new line to ShopNBC and uses smart molecules and smart mineral technology that is said to allow their makeup to float on the skin. It has self-adjusting pigments so it always perfectly matches your skin tone. This innovative color cosmetics collection is infused with peptides and is 100% paraben and fragrance free. Check out other products in the Celestine line here.

(Retail: $120) ~ Special Beauty Day Price: $89.68 (3 Value Pays: $29.89)

This kit is a dual action teeth whitening system.  The Fierce White Dual eneded unit Chamber 1 delivers a primer that you paint onto the teeth. Chamber 2 is the whitening agent and is painted on top of the primer.  It's enriched with peppermint oil and Blood of the Dragon botanical extract.  Fierce White Retouch Pens extend the efforts of the whitening system.  It's a simple way to noticeably whiten teeth.  Dentalogica's scientifically advanced system is formulated to achieve luminous results in an innovative delivery system. Safe on crowns, veneers, implants and partials. Works great if you have coffee, tea, red wine or other foods likely to stain teeth.  The Mandarin Orange Lip Balm contains collagen microspheres that help maximize volume. It enhance the natural color and shape of your lips with its lip plumping properties. You feel the tingly blend on your lips a few minutes after applying. Natural marine spheres, like micro-sponges, expand in the gaps caused by aging and overexposure to the sun. It's rich in beta carotene and an all natural moisturizer that contains essential bio-nutrients to sooth chapped lips. Other ingredients include mango seed butter, oligopeptides DPHP.

Be sure to check out other great summer beauty products and tools from brands like AminoGenesis, Peter Coppola, DermaWand, Toni Brattin Tan Fabulous and more.

And you absolutely don't want to miss your chance to enter to win this fantastic Christian Audigier Tote filled to the brim with beauty products.  Visit ShopBeauty at ShopNBC on Facebook to enter.  Contest ends tomorrow, May 1st.

Watch All Day of Summer Beauty on ShopNBC beginning Saturday night and all day Sunday, May 1st. You can also check them out online at ShopNBC.com.
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