Monday, July 31, 2006

Introducing: Good Skin Color

Good Skin, a skin-care line created by Estee Lauder and sold exclusively at Kohl's stores, has just launched its beauty line. I'm already a huge fan of Good Skin's Megabalm Ultra Soothing Lip Treatment ($9.50), so I was my curiosity was definitely piqued about what fun and fancy new products they might have. So today I made my way to my neighborhood Kohls... only to be dissappointed by the fact that they didn't have the new make-up section in yet! Not one to easily give up, I decided to drive the 15 minutes to the other Kohls I know of in the area. Voila! They had the new makeup. And how fabulous it all looked!

You can imagine my joy at discovering that their Megabalm, which I love for its beautiful glossiness and its ability to quench and soften my lips like nothing else, now came in tinted forumlas ($9.50) as well!

I immediately fell in love with Bronze Raisin, a sheer and gorgeously shimmery shade (the picture on the website does not do it justice!). I also liked Mocha Pink, but couldn't afford to buy more than 1 tube at a time (...yet) so that one will have to wait. But it looked like a nice neutral shade.

The next product to catch my eye was their Smooth Color Eyeshadow Duo ($14.50). The shades all looked soft, subtly shimmery, and absolutely gorgeous. Unfortunately when I tested the shadows on my hand the shimmer didn't show up really well. I know for me with certain colors I need that bit of shimmer, otherwise the color looks odd on me. Again, I definitely suggest going into the stores to check out the color selection b/c the online pictures don't really tell you much. Anyway, I bought a shadow duo in Sweet Sherbet. The colors are very soft and subtle, but sweet and pretty. They also feel silky soft going on the lid.

I looked at some of their blush options, they had a powder blush and a cream blush ($15 each). I tested the cream blush on my hands and noticed that you need to be pretty careful about how much you use-- it felt a bit sticky and went on kind of boldly. Basically, if you want to use that product you just have to make sure to go little bits at a time so you don't end up looking like a clown. I may have to try one of their powder blushes sometime, though. They had a nice range of colors, and many of them also had a bit of that shimmery quality that made them look really pretty.

I may also have to try their mascara ($12.50) sometime in the future. It's a two-sided version, with a fortifying serum on one end to nourish and strengthen lashes, and black or brown mascara on the other to lengthen.

I had fun today checking out the different products. I left a few products out of this post, so if you want to check them out you can go to Kohls online or to one of their stores (check website for locations). I wonder if this will be the entire line, or if they've got some new things up their sleeve that they will unveil later on down the line...

*Note: I will be out of town tuesday and wednesday and will be unable to post. I'll be back on thursday.*

Get It Straight

*I have been having serious issues with Blogger and the photo uploading tool lately. If anyone knows what's going on, please help me out! It seems like this has been going on, off-and-on, for at least a few weeks. Thanks*

In this day and age of hair dryers, flat irons, curling irons, etc, our hair is subjected to more heat styling that ever before. Although this may make hair look awesome in the short-term, long-term it causes hair to become damaged and brittle. As a result, a whole slew of heat-protecting hair care products have arrived on the market. USE THEM!

Sleek.look by Matrix Smoothing System Iron Smoother Spray (~$13)-- This was the first product I tried when I started using my flat-iron. It was brand-new, and I believe the first heat protecting spray designed to be used with flat irons. I was amazed by the results-- it made my hair easier to straighten, and the style lasted longer. I remember one morning I straightened my hair and wore it down, only to walk outside and see that it was raining. I instantly thought "Oh, crap" and waited for the frizz fest to begin. But, to my utter shock and amazement, my hair stayed straight and sleek all day long. I was AMAZED.

Eventually, however, I found that I was less than thrilled with the use of a spray. It left wierd gunk on my flat iron blades. And I had a hard time trying to make sure my whole head was covered in its protective spray, without overdoing it (and ending up looking greasy). So I ventured out to try to find a cream formula. Enter:

Redken Align 12 Ultra-Straight Balm (~ $15)-- This product is designed to be spread through damp hair. It then helps you get a better (straighter, less frizzy) blow-dry, and flat iron, while helping protect hair from the heat. It requires a bit more forward-thinking (I myself don't always know right out of the shower if I'll want to wear my hair curly or straight) but that hasn't been a huge problem even if I use it and then decide to stay curly. I usually let my hair air-dry, partially to lessen the amount of heat-styling I subject my hair to and also b/c I have yet to figure out how to blow-dry my hair successfully. Anyway, Align still ensures that my hair is better protected against the heat of my flat-iron while at the same time helping it relax and straighten, and stay that way.

The last step in my routine is to use Sleek.look by Matrix Sealing Serum (~$15). This helps tame any frizzies or flyaways, while providing great sleekness and shine. It's one of my miracle tools.

Each of these products are sold at salons and come with a warning that professional hair salons are their only authorized distributors. However I have found each of these at beauty stores,, and even Target. The prices generally are about the same, so if you can find them at a professional salon that's probably best, though it can be difficult at times to find a salon that carries the products you want. I do believe that most Supercuts, Great Clips, etc carry most Matrix products.

Friday, July 28, 2006

My Virtual Model

So, I've been aware for a while that Glamour has a virtual model tool on their website where you can go and "try on" the season's latest jeans, swim suits, etc. What I didn't realize is how many other sites were jumping on the bandwagon!

There is anow a My Virtual Model webpage, where men and women can create a virtual model of themselves and shop at such online stores as H&M, Adidas, Land's End, Speedo, and Sears. You can customize the model according to your overall body shape (pear, hour-glass, apple?), your hair color and hair style, and your height. The H&M site even let me enter inch measurements for my bust, waist, hips, thighs, etc for a more exact replica of myself (at left, trying on some stylish H&M fashions). And your model has a unique username and password that can be used accross any of these sites.

Sure, this doesn't exactly replace trying on the clothes in real life, but it's a fun tool for playing around with different styles and outfits. =) Enjoy!

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Sonia Kashuk Lip and Cheek Tint

Not too long ago I invested in the Benetint Pocket Pal, which contains Benefit's imfamous cheek stain. As stated in my review, I've been pretty happy with this product. However it is pricey ($18 for the Pocket Pal, $28 for a bottle of the cheek stain alone). So when I heard that Sonia Kashuk had come out with her own lip and cheek tint for Target, I was more than a bit interested.

Well, I finally made it out to the store to get some yesterday. At $7.99 a pop, this product is much easier on the pocket book. At home and anxious to give it a try, I unscrewed the top and was pleasded to see the little roller ball applicator! Benetint Pocket Pal (not sure about the stand-along version) has an applicator that's a little brush, sort of like a nail polish applicator. This always made me a bit nervous when putting it on, since the liquid is a stain meaning I definitely didn't want it to spill, and after applying a few strokes of the brush on my cheeks I was always rushed to screw the cap back on (to avoid spills) and free my hand again to spread the product before it "stained" as a couple small streaks. It always worked out fine, but there was a bit of a nervous factor there.

The Sonia Kashuk stain, however, has the roller ball applicator, which means chances of spilling the liquid and staining everything in sight are practically nil. And I can simply roll a few strokes onto my cheeks and smudge immediately, recapping afterwards. These may seem like little things, but they are significant to me. ; )

The color of the Sonia Kashuk stain is nice, a deep rosy color that gave me a near perfect match of the flushed look I always seek. I also used it on my lips and was pleased-- the color was nice and pinkish, as opposed to Benetint's which could seem almost a hint of orange-y when I used it on my lips.

Bottom line: In this day and age where stains are all the rage but only available at high prices from Sephora, this lower-priced but still high-quality product is very much welcome and worth a try! I apologize for not having a picture-- I could not find one anywhere online, and my own attempts to take a picture with my digital camera failed miserably. You should be able to find it easily enough at Target. The bottle looks like Sonia Kashuk's lip glosses, in a rectangular shaped tube with a white cap.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006


Lip gloss will be the death of me. I love, love, LOVE lip gloss. Can't get enough. And one of my most recent lip gloss finds is this yummy treat by Victoria's Secret-- their Beauty Rush Lip Gloss. It's glossy, it's sparkly, it comes in all sorts of delicious colors and flavors, and currently it's on sale in stores for 2 for $10 (or 3 for $15 online). My only complaint is that they are a bit sticky, so make sure to wear your hair back when you go outside so it doesn't become glued to your lips. But the sticky factor also gives this gloss extra staying power, and I've been amazed at how shiny and glossy my lips looked even after drinking a glass of water or eating a meal. One last thing, these also have the slanted-tip flat applicator which makes gliding it onto your lips that much easier (who came up with the rounded tip lip gloss applicators anyway?!?).

Indulge. You know you wanna. ; )

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

It's Getting Hot in Here

I apologize for the very late post today... it's been hotter than heck around here lately and, as our apartment has no AC, I've been out literally all day long seeking air-conditioned places (Borders, the mall, a movie theatre) within which to seek solace from the heat. Which means I've been away from my computer all day. = ( I'll try to plan ahead better in the future.

Anyway, speaking of ungodly heat.... These days we all need a little something extra to help keep us feeling "fresh." However some people worry that anti-perspirants, with all their indecipherable chemical ingredients, might not be the best for your health (there is contradictory evidence on whether or not a key ingredient of antiperspirants, aluminum chlorohydrate, increases risk of breast cancer). For those of us who would rather not risk it, but still want protection against wetness, there is Adidas Absorbent-Deo, $3.99 at drugstores (there is also a formula for men).

Normal antiperspirants work by clogging your sweat glands, which blocks smelly sweat from escaping out through the skin (this effort is combined with deodorant to dampen the smell of sweat that does escape). This blockage interferes with your body's ability to rid itself of toxins.

This nifty new product works a different way. It is (in their words) "the first deodorant for women to manage perspiration as effectively as an anti-perspirant, with patented Cotton Tech™ to absorb and evaporate wetness naturally." Basically, it has teeny tiny cotton fibers that absorb your sweat and make it not only not noticeable but also non-smelly.

I know, I totally didn't believe it either. But it really does work.

The perks? No aluminum. AND it won't leave those nasty yellow stains on the armpits of your favorite white shirt (who knew those were caused by antiperspirants?!?).

I've been using this stuff during this ungodly heat wave and I have to say I can't complain. It's been working as well as, if not better than, my old antiperspirants. I say it's worth a try.

Monday, July 24, 2006

Bumble & Bumble Surf Spray

I posted a while back about my search for a replacement to the now-discontinued John Frieda Beach Blonde Ocean Waves spray, which was one of my top favorite hair products. This stuff was simply amazing-- it smelled so yummy and uniquely like summer, it helped bring out the curls in my hair and gave it great texture. However, since they don't make it anyone (Lord knows why) I've had to try to find something else to do the trick.

Someone suggested I try Bumble and Bumble's Surf Spray. It's a bit pricier ($24 for a 4oz bottle, compared to my $6 bottle of Ocean Waves spray), but I figured that also meant it must be better, right? So I plunked down the cash and tried it.

I have to say, I am not that happy with the results. I've tried it a few times, spraying it on damp hair, another time on dry hair, playing around with it in different ways. But I've yet to achieve the same look as I got with my beloved John Frieda spray. And to top it off the Bumble and Bumble spray makes my hair feel really dry, as if it's damaged (my hair normally feels pretty soft).

*Sigh* The search continues.

Friday, July 21, 2006

Estilo Español

Hello, my dear readers! I am back-- returned last night (some would say it was early this morning) from my week and 1/2 in Spain. It was wonderful, awesome, such a great trip! =)

As I travelled through Madrid and Granada I noticed a few trends that I kept seeing over and over again. I thought for my first post back I would talk a bit about some of these. Here goes:

1. Leggings- These were everywhere, particularly calf-length leggings worn with a short skirt, usually one of those bubble skirts (where the fabric folds back under at the bottom so it puffs up a bit).

2. Bra Straps- Apparently the taboo-ness if blatantly showing off your bra straps has gotten lost somewhere over the Atlantic ocean. Many girls wore racer-back tanks, or even halter tops, with a bra underneath. To their credit, the bra would look quite intentional and was coordinated into the outfit, often in a matching or complimentary color. I also saw many of the clear bra straps, and even a store selling bras that had clear shoulder and back straps, to wear with backless tops.

3. Panty-Peek- The Spanish have certainly come up with an interesting solution to the low-rise jeans problem-- you know, low-rise is so flattering yet you risk showing the world your thong or impersonating an overweight plumber. Instead, they've followed a similar path to the bra-straps trend, in that they wear what look like spandex shorts/undies in a solid color (or a pattern, I once saw one that matched the girl's shirt) and let that show to the world while allowing their jeans to sit mid-butt. It's kind of clever, you get the benefit of the low-rise waistline, you don't have to show any extra flesh while doing it,m and you get to add yet another accessory option with the underwear!

4. Let the Curls Flow- I noticed what seemed to be an incredibly high number of girls who had curly hair. I realized that there must be a lot more women there who simply allow their curly hair to be curly and have learned how to style it so their curls look prefectly frizz-free. Here in the US I think many of us have become dependent on our blow-dryers and flat irons for the simplicity that is straight, sleek hair. They do seem to be helped by the other trend of having uber-layered hair, which allows curls to be more springy and alive. Which brings us to my last item of business....

5. The Euro-Mullet: It's not just for men!- I don't think I noticed the quantity of mullets untill I was in Granada. I'm not sure if there were more there than in Madrid or if I simply hadn't noticed them before, but a high number of the make and female population seemed to have mullets. Some were a bit subdued, with short layers on top and longer layers in back. Others were straight-up, unapologetic mullets. I even saw a guy with an faux-hawk and dreadlocked mullet in the back. I overheard one American female traveller say "You know you've been here tool ong when you look at a guy and think 'hey, he looks pretty good... oh wait he's got a mullet!!'"

So there you have it, a few of the style trneds I noticed most while I was overseas. I have pictures to go with these, but blogger isn't letting me upload them right now so we may just have to wait for those till later. I hope everyone's doing well, and didn't miss me too much! ; )

Friday, July 07, 2006

Dear Readers,

This weekend I will be walking in the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer, an event to raise funds and awareness for Breast Cancer, its symptoms, and possible treatments. After returning from SF sunday night, I will be then flying out monday morning to spend 10 days in Spain with my sister. This is all fantabulous for me, but unfortunately it means that I will most likely not be able to post on this blog while I'm away. I apologize for this great dissappointment. I will try to maybe squeeze a post in somewhere along the way, but I have no idea what my internet access capabilities will be like, etc.

You may substitute my abscence with any of the other fantabulous fashion blogs listed in my Links section. I will begin posting again by July 24 (at the latest).

So please.... don't you forget about me. ; )

love, Marcy

Smells Like J.Lo Spirit

I have developed what seems like a fascination with Jennifer Lopez's fragrances. I don't know what it is about them, but hers tend to be my current favorites. Let's begin down the line....

I never really cared too much for Glow by J.Lo, so my first love was really with Miami Glow. It smells like summer. Seriously. Like the beach and sunscreen, except in a super awesome sexy way. I bought it at Kohl's, but a simple froogle search will link you up with any number of discount fragrance websites.

Then I discovered Live. This scent is wild, passionate, fun. To me, it's perfect for a night out on the town. Plus LOOK at that bottle! How friggin gorgeous is it?!? Live by J.Lo (which I'm still not sure how it's pronounced... does it rhyme with "give" or "jive"?) is available at Sephora. It's a bit pricey ($42 for 1.7oz bottle), but not nearly as bad as other popular fragrances.

Finally, there is Love at First Glow. This newer, more romantic and innocent version of the original Glow by J.Lo is sort of subtle and sweet. It's more subdued. Definitely wearable for day time, or a romantic evening out with your honey. Oh, and the little charm around the bottle is a cell phone charm. How cute is that? =) Love at First Glow is available at Sephora, $45 for 1.7oz bottle.

Now remember-- before you plunk down any serious cash on these or any other perfumes, get a sample first. Sephora or any other cosmetic boutique should be more than happy to give you a small smaple of any fragrance you want so you can test it out on yourself for a few days. Scents will change slightly when mixed with different people's body chemistry so what smells heavenly on your best friend may not smell as sweet on your own bod.

One last tip before I go-- when spritzing on perfume, flip your head over and spray the underside of your hair once. Now all day long when your hair moves it will release little wisps of scent.

Thursday, July 06, 2006


I have always had a really hard time buying a pair of shorts. They're even harder to shop for than jeans. My problems: 1) they're generally so super short that there's usually some ass cheek hanging going on, 2) They also tend to have widened-out legs, which I don't get AT ALL. Combine super short with wide legs and you get not only total butt peek, but the parts of my butt that are covered look wierd b/c of how the legs flare out. Going up a size or 2 doesn't seem to help, as it only makes the awkward fit even more awkward.

Thus I have embraced the capri and knee-length shorts trends. They allow me to be cooler, while being able to avoid the dreaded shorts. However, this season it seems shorts are being born-again, and being the ever hopefuly optimist that I am, I set out today for some experimental shopping. I can usually get away without shorts in this great California climate, but next week I'm flying out to Spain where it is swelteringly hot currently so... yeah.

First I went to Kohl's. Kohl's is a wonderful place where cute clothes come in bundles, and cheap ones at that. However I got frustrated quickly as all the shorts were of the typical super-short variety, and everything seemed to come in size 0, 1, 3, 5, 11, 13+, conveneintly skipping my size range of 6-9. Grrr. I did find a pair of carpis (sort of like these) however that fit pretty well and were only $13, so I was somewhat successful. yay! I also snagged a lace tank top that's nice and long for $4.99.

I then hit Old Navy, and that's where I hit the jackpot-- they actually have stylish looking shorts in longer lengths!!! I tried on a few of their 3.5" inseam shorts and, although they still didn't *quite* fit perfectly (I think my latin booty is a bit much for Old Navy) I was mostly satisfied with the fit and I LOVED the length (the ones pictured at right are on sale online for $17.50).

Here's a couple other cute styles I liked:

Madras shorts for $22; Twill shorts for $17.50

If you like the longer bermuda shorts (each for $26.50):

Tab-waist bermudas for $26.50; Mardas bermudas for $24.50

Check for additional styles and colors.

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Wedding Season

Summer means.... wedding season. Obnoxiously big white dresses and pretty shiny things. Last year I had 4 weddings to attend between the months of may and october. This year it's only one, but I'm still scrambling to figure out what to wear.

Well, as I was perusing my newest finding (the fact that Forever 21 has an actual website), I found a very cute and plentiful collection of summer dresses, all for about $25 each! Unfortunately the site won't allow me to borrow pictures, so I can't showcase them here. But you can click here to be taken to the Forever 21 dress section. Some of my favorites include the Luau Spaghetti Dress (it just looks fun!), the Striped Floral Halter Dress, the Floral Empire Tie Dress, and the Chrissy Crossover Dress.

Enjoy your perusing! =)

Monday, July 03, 2006

My Wishlist: VS Swimwear

As an Angels card holder, there are several times a year where I find massive amounts of Victoria's Secret catalogues jammed into my teeny mailbox. Summer is one of those times. New summer clothing catalogues, new swimsuit collection catalogues, special swimsuit sales catalogues, etc. And what else is a girl to do, but stare dreamily at the pages, lusting after all the cute swimsuits, inevitably ingraining to memory each new style, catalogue after catalogue, to the point where I, er, she can recognize a VS swimsuit from a mile away? ; )

Well, towards the end of last week I got my Swimwear Clearance catalogue. Below is a list of a few items that I would love to own, all reduced to a semi-reasonable price. Lust away with me...

First and foremost, is this plain triangle bikini, simple yet timeless and classic, at the very sweet price of $19. It comes in a variety of colors for you to choose from. The only drawback is the top and bottom come as a set, so you vcan't mix and match sizes or colors. But, heck, you could just buy 2 of them and get 4 swimwuits for the price of 2!

Now this... I think this floral bandeau suit is just beautiful. I LOVE the design on it. Unfortunately it's white, so I would not trust it in wate,r but how GORGEOUS is it?!? The bandeau top is $31, the bottoms $28. It also comes in a black design, but I don't like it nearly as much as this one.

This coral-inspired suit is just cute. I like the design, and I've been diggin brown a lot lately. You can also get it in solid brown, or in white with the coral design. Both top and bottom are $28.

Now, I ask you-- how unbelievable cute is this polkadot/"bubble" swimsuit? Again, white, which is untrustworthy, but this suit is just too sweet. The top is $15, the bottoms $14.

I'm intruigued by this floral swimsuit. I just like the pattern for some reason. I;m not even quite sure why. It also comes in mocha/magenta, but I prefer the black/cream color combination. The suit (both top and bottom) is on sale for all of $12.

You may peruse the rest of VS's swimsuit sale items here. They are also, I believe, still holding their semi-annual sale on clothing and lingerie items... just, you know, fyi. ; ) Oh, and BTW, use the code "SHP" at check-out to get free shipping on orders totalling $100 or more.