L’Homme Sport

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Sweet, leather-like citrus notes comprise Yves Saint Laurent L’Homme (Yves Saint Laurent 2014).  This is a powerful, manly, sexy and clean scent.  It’s instensely fresh and more than a bit dapper.  L’Homme is meant for a man who isn’t afraid of making an impression – there’s a great deal of sillage and it lasts for a moderate to long amount of time.

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Top notes: verbena, bergamot and aldehydes. Middle notes: coriande, woody notes.  Base notes: cedar and amber.

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La Roche-Posay, Effaclar Duo is a delightful product for the occasional pimple or two…  If you’ve been stressed, etc.  and have a breakout applying this product overnight works wonders.  You don’t have to use much and it doesn’t dry out your skin.   If you’ve heard the hype about Effaclar Duo, as far as I see it’s all true.

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You may or may not have read my review of Avène Eau Thermale, and if you did you may recall how I raved about it.  Well, if you too are a fan of Avène Eau Thermale and live in the US and find it hard to keep up your stock since it’s not sold everywhere and often has to be purchased online, then perhaps La Roche-Posay Eau Thermale is a good bet.  It’s sold at Target and as far as I can tell works as well or at least nearly as well as Avène Eau Thermale.  It soothes the skin, and is also a bit hydrating just like Avène.  It’s also very refreshing to spray on the skin during the warmer months of the year or after exercise.

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And here go some personal ramblings…

Lately I’ve been thinking about what it means to be a Christian (for lots of reasons).  And one of the things I struggle with most is how judgemental people of my faith can sometimes actually be and other times just seem

What does it mean to be judgemental anyway?  Well, it’s tricky isn’t it?

Two stories from my personal life come to mind.  They both involve cheating – something most people consider wrong.

When I was in college I worked with a guy who was very artistic and intelligent.  We had lots of great conversations but he had a girlfriend and I knew that so I purposefully tried to just be his friend.  However, on one occasion he gave the impression that he wanted to be physically involved with me.  I had been cheated on by my first boyfriend around that time and I was not flattered.  I was livid actually, although I didn’t let the guy I worked with know it at the time.   Instead, I was really rude to him whenever I saw him and at one point even made him cry (I cringe at the thought I feel so bad).  Looking back at that I’m ashamed of myself.  I’m pretty sure you could consider my behavior towards him rather judgemental, although at the time all I could think about was his girlfriend and how hurt she would have been if something had happened between me and him (as I had been by my first boyfriend).  I made a ton of assumptions and even if some or all of them were correct it wasn’t my place to be the hand of justice…

Then once I was seeing a guy who couldn’t decide how he felt about being with me.  At first he said he loved me madly but eventually he didn’t seem as sure, and then he did and then he mostly didn’t but did sorta…  and on and on.    I never knew whether I was coming or going with him…  (I’ve told this story before.)  And then one day I saw something he likely didn’t intend for me to see that was hurtful and I felt betrayed.  While he was somewhat seemingly honest about almost everything at first, eventually he became much less transparent about many things and I began to suspect a deep lack of genuine romantic interest in me and a longing on his part to be with other sorts of people (or so it seemed – he was very confused at the time)…  So I lied, and pretended to have found another boyfriend out of a lot of frustration and hurt, he seemingly finally confessed his real feelings for me (or lack thereof) and that we had no real future together, and we stopped talking to each other shortly after that.  To this day I am quite sure he thinks I was and am an evil or at least weak, immoral woman for finding another guy while we were still involved (even though he didn’t want to actually be with me anyway)…  I’m almost positive he “judged” me.  I probably “judged” him and misunderstood him too though.   And, fyi, and note to self, revenge is rarely a good idea.

So, I guess, basically, to me, being “judgemental” means taking a grain of truth (or perceived truth) about a situation and then getting “carried away with it.”    I had good intentions in feeling bad for the girlfriend from the first story, and she may indeed have been very hurt had her boyfriend done anything with me.  Making the “judgement” that cheating is wrong was ok and necessary I believe, but when I became “judgemental” the way many people perceive Christians as being, was when I assumed I knew all of the facts and put myself a notch above that guy in my mind, or at least treated him like he was beneath me.  And, from that place of false superiority and ignorance, when I decided it was my personal business to correct his actions that also was being “judgemental”, of course.

It’s so hard to avoid being judgemental every once and a while though, I think, for most people, not just Christians who fall unwittingly into negative stereotypes.  If you are capable of being hurt I think you’re capable of being “judgemental”…  Sigh. But perhaps some people do tend towards it more than others for whatever reason…

And I shouldn’t judge that.

Live

2015-03-29 12.54.52Lacoste Live (Lacoste 2014) is sexy, sharp and very masculine.  With woody and herbal notes it has some depth too… Longevity and sillage are moderate.  Notes are listed as: watery notes, green notes, lime, licorice and Guaiac Wood. 

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Skin Medica Vitamin C & E Complex is much better than I thought it would be…  It’s one of those products that flies under the radar and isn’t in fancy packaging, but really works.  I used it primarily as an under-eye anti-aging product, but it can and should be used elsewhere too.  It lightened the darkeness around my eyes, tightened the skin and reduced my fine lines. This product is worth it…

2015-04-04 12.37.42 (3)Yves Saint Laurent Volupté Tint-In-Oil is FANTASTIC!  Wow…  I am in love with this stuff.  It really is the best of both lip gloss and lipstick.  The colors are flattering (I tried Cherry My Cherie) and perfectly rich, the consistency is dreamy and the shine is beguiling (although the shine does eventually wear off and leave just a pretty stain behind).  This is going to become a beauty staple for me.  It’s youthful but refined.  It’s fantastic.

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This weekend had it’s share of ugly moments, but it had nice ones too.   It was pleasant to see a few cousins I haven’t seen in much too long, to meet spouses of cousins who recently joined the family and to see other cousins and uncles and aunts who are all good people.  But, on the less than pleasant side, my son got into my perfume collection and broke a vintage bottle that was almost full right before we were supposed to leave for the wedding.  It shattered into pieces and the contents were all over the place.  Now, the hallway near the collection smells powdery, sweet and balsamic, and to be honest, it does actually make walking down the hall much more enjoyable.

Sigh.

I hope you’re having a nice start to your week dear reader. 🙂

Bottega Veneta

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Bottega Veneta, Bottega Veneta (Bottega Veneta 2011) is a sweet, watery floral bouquet. It’s a bit spicy too.  Actually, it’s quite spicy…  Pink Pepper is very especially detectable at first, and patchouli emerges as a strong note in the drydown.

Longevity is weak to moderate and sillage is also weak to moderate (at least on me).  This is not a cold weather fragrance. Unless you project your perfume very easily I would suggest wearing this on a warmer day.

Top notes: pink pepper, bergamot.  Middle notes: jasmine.  Base notes: leather, oakmoss, and patchouli.

And ode to mineral oil…

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The often demonized mineral oil, and other petroleum by-products, found in cosmetics are hard to avoid.  However, being a person who tries, defiantly at times, to avoid “bad” ingredients in almost any and everything I’ve managed fairly well to abstain.  This past winter though I broke down.  I read one too many articles written about the safety of certain products due to the high level of processing they put their petroleum by-products through.  And it was so cold, and so dry and Vaseline started looking tempting…  After doing research on ewg.org and reading Paula Begoun’s take on it, I bought some.  Ever since then I have less of a black and white view of mineral oil and try to assess products containing petroleum by-products on more of a case by case basis.

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Vaseline Original is simply fantastic.  I use it to coat my eyelashes before going to sleep (my lashes are actually thicker and longer – no joke).  I slather some on my lips before sleeping too, and in between hair cuts I mix it with coconut oil to deep condition the ends of my hair.  And it lasts forever, and works!  I mean, sure, it’s not actually moisturizing, but it’s a great emollient.  So, when combined with a moisturizing product it helps the other product work overtime.  It also prevents the skin from drying out even if it doesn’t actually moisturize (on my lips at night).  And, you can use it for soo soo many things (baby bottoms, cuticle cream, lip gloss, etc.).  This stuff is irreplaceable.  Just make sure you buy the actual Vaseline brand because they supposedly have strict standards for their petroleum by-products and other companies might not be as safe.

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Ok, so I might not recommend Carmex Original Lip Balm based on ingredients, but man, it works…  I try mot to use this classic lip care product too often, but when my lips are really dry or I just feel like having super soft lips this product comes in handy.  Within a relatively short amount of time my lips are basically transformed.  Perhaps limited use combined with “safer” lip products is a reasonable option.  So, basically, use Carmex to treat the lips and then follow up with something more benign (i.e. Burt’s Bees).  And really, even the packaging of this product recommends limited daily use…

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Smith’s Rosebud Salve is still being made in the same way it was since the late 1890’s.  It’s a classic.  It smells like rosebud petals, is smooth, slightly tinted with a pretty pink hue, and is free from parabens and phthalates.  It does, however, have petroleum by-products…  And frankly, I just don’t care.  I’m guessing that they’re the safe variety, and even if they aren’t it’s so darn safe in other ways that I feel it “evens out” so to speak.

This stuff is fabulous. It can be used as a very slighty tinted lip moisturizer (my favorite use), hair smoother (in a pinch), or a moisturizer for your hands or cuticles.  And really, it’s just so darn cute in its pretty little tin.  It’s one of my new go to products (even though it’s been popular for quite some time).

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I can’t believe it’s already almost June.  But, I’m glad…  I’m ready for summer.

What are you looking forward to this summer?  I’m looking forward to being outside as much as possible.  For whatever reason, I’ve been craving nature lately…

At any rate, I hope your week is starting well. 🙂

1932

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Named after the year of the first fine jewelry collection for Chanel, Les Exclusifs de Chanel 1932, is the most effervescent, bright floral among the Les Exclusifs de Chanel.  It has all the markings of being a Chanel fragrance but with a particularly sunny disposition.  I almost feel bad reviewing it in the winter actually, it feels like such a summer scent with its singing floral notes set in retro meets modern Chanel glory…

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Created by Jacques Polge for Chanel (Chanel 2013), the top notes are listed as: aldehydes, neroli and bergamot. Middles notes are: jasmine, rose, ylang ylang, carnation and lilac.  Base notes: opoponax, vetiver, orris root, sandalwod, incense, vanilla, coumarin, ambrette, and musk.  Longetivity is decent and sillage is moderate.

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Génifique Youth Activating Concentrate by Lancôme seems to work well.  It wasn’t greasy, didn’t obviously irritate my skin, my pores appeared smaller and my fine lines were a bit diminished.  However, the results weren’t better than any other “youth serum” or “anti-aging concentrate” etc. I’ve ever tried.  So given that there are some questionable ingredients listed and the price isn’t exactly inexpensive I’m not sure it’s worth it….

2015-01-17 15.38.09However, things were a bit more exciting with silky, super concentrated Lancôme Visionnaire.  Visionnaire is really pretty darn fantastic… My skin was glowing after I used it and that glow was seemingly permanent (until I stopped using it of course). And, by glow I don’t mean irritation either.  My pores were a lot smaller, my skin was tighter, my fine lines almost totally disappeared and my face looked “lit from within.”

Of course, many people have raised issue with the amount of alcohol used (among other potentially negative ingredients) in this serum. They worry that the long term damage caused by this serum because of the alcohol content won’t be worth the short term results. However, while I did notice that my skin was a tiny bit drier than usual the short term results really are that good so I say do your research and make an informed decision. If you’re concerned about ingredients (as in ones that are not “natural”) then maybe steer clear, but if not then this may be the serum for you (even if you don’t have fine lines it could still be worth it).

And, oh my, Downton Abbey!  I am now completely engrossed in this show again.  There are so many emotionally vivid and engaging storylines this season.

-Did Cora really want nothing to happen with the art historian in their bedroom? Hmm…

-What will Edith do with Marigold? How will Mrs. Drewe (and Mr. Drewe) react to whatever she decides?

-Are Tom and Mary possibly developing something?  (Ok, this could just be wishful thinking on my part but they’ve had a lot of (possible) “moments” so far in my opinion.)

-Is Tom glad that Sarah Bunting is gone and was he in love with her at all or not?  Will she be back?

-Where will Tom be next season?

-What will become of the Dowager Countess and her former love?

And I love the romance between Rose and Mr. Aldridge.  They make a handsome couple.

🙂

L’Origan

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In 1905, Francois Coty debuted L’Origan.  It was considered very advanced at that time (this is before the sinking of the Titanic and World War I of course) due to it’s use of synthetic materials.

I’m blessed to have found a very old vintage bottle of L’Origan (Coty 1905).  Using it is a treat…

It’s a particularly warm and spicy fragrance.  L’Origan is heavy yet delicate and reminds me of cinnamon sticks mixed with flowers, and the scent of burning wood.

Smelling it is like taking a small trip back in time because it’s extraordinarily vintage – it is nothing like anything one could easily purchase at present. During the drydown it becomes bright and effusive, but still maintains it’s heavy sensibility.  Again, I can’t think of any scent that so brings to mind an era when quality, romance and elegant ornamentation reigned supreme, as a very vintage bottle of L’Origan.

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My bottle came in a box with L’Aimant.

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Top notes: bergamot, coriander, orange, pepper and peach. Middle notes: nutmeg, spices, jasmine, violet, rose, ylang ylang, and African orange flower. Base notes: benzoin, Virginia cedar, incense, musk, sandalwood, vanilla, civetta, and coumarin.

I also am trying a few samples I recently acquired from Guerlain.  So far, I’m very happy with almost everything.

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However, my favorite item has been the Super Aqua-Serum.  It’s an anti-ageing, skin plumping intensive moisturizer meant for everyday use.  While it is heavily scented, the scent is far from offensive (it’s Guerlain after all) – it smells light and airy, and it lives up to it’s promises.  My skin is definitely softer and more refined when I use it.  It really does seem to “plump up” the skin.  My only complaints are that it’s a bit greasy at first, and of course, the ingredients aren’t exactly natural.  But, overall, I quite like it.

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Two of the other samples were Guerlain, Exceptional Complete Mascara and Guerlain, Secret De Pureté, Crystal Lotus Flower, Eye and Lip Make-up Remover.  The mascara was also very fragranced, but again, it was a nice scent – it smelled like lovely roses.  I think I detected a slight blue tint to the black shade I was using, but it was flattering.  I was slightly miffed that the mascara seemed to clump a little bit, but it was lengthening in a way that I’ve simply never seen before, and it created brilliant definition.  I was pleased, and apparently the actual mascara comes with it’s own mirror, as depicted in the ad attached to the tester box.  Of course, be aware, it’s not a mascara made from “natural” ingredients.

The Eye and Lip Make-up Remover was less satisfactory, but it worked. That’s the thing though, it just worked. It didn’t do anything remarkable, and actually it only worked once I used it over and over again.  Perhaps with time I would notice more of a difference, but sadly this product might not be worth the price since there are less expensive options that work just as well if not better.

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black cashmere sweater – Hayden, jeans -old, vintage earrings found on Etsy

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I love these earrings – they’re made from 1930’s camphor glass. I found them on Etsy.

So, I hope your week is starting off well.  It’s the last Monday of 2014, and then it will be the last Tuesday of 2014, and then the last Wednesday of 2014…  And then it will be Thursday of 2015.  And then Friday and the day after that will be Saturday.  Then comes Sunday again, just like yesterday was Sunday and then Monday is the day after that.  😉

Tabu

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For many years my mother would wake up early on Saturday mornings and travel to a nearby town to visit a good friend of hers.  Although well into her later years of life she was remarkably youthful.  My mother and she (I’ll call her Elizabeth) would pull weeds in the garden or the yard, vacuum, cook, and then sit down at the kitchen table and have thoughtful conversations about many things.  Elizabeth was like a second-mother to my mom in a way, but she was also just a cherished friend. Eventually, as the years progressed, my mother was the only one doing the morning chores, but they still had their meaningful talks as always.

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Elizabeth was a lovely woman.  Her enviably thick hair had turned naturally platinum blond when it “grayed” and she had large, vivid, startlingly blue eyes.   At Elizabeth’s 90th birthday party, there was a moment when her hair was caught in the wind and the hem of her dress, although still quite proper, blew slightly askew.  A man observing the scene commented that she was the real Marilyn Monroe.  I think most women, including myself, would be thrilled to be as stunning as her in their 90’s.

About a year or so ago she died and it still shocks me on occasion when I think of it. She was a permanent fixture of my childhood and had such vitality that my mind has yet to fully grasp that time has passed and she isn’t somewhere in her house, listening to the radio or outside in her yard.

It’s funny that I would think of Elizabeth when I’m wearing and discussing Tabu (Dana 1932) because the persona this fragrance was originally attempting to cater to had something in common with the perception people have of Marilyn Monroe but doesn’t share much of anything in common with Elizabeth.  But, the thing is, to my contemporary nose Tabu is really just a gorgeous, womanly, warm scent of that era.  It reminds me of Elizabeth.

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My vintage Tabu fragrance set

It was launched in 1932 with the idea being a “parfum de puta” (perfume for a whore – or a scent a whore would wear) but, again, in the context of today it smells like a spicy, sweet, engaging, but somewhat serious fragrance.  Perhaps it’s the open, sweet and spicy warmth of Tabu that would have been scandalous in the 30’s but given today’s candy coated fruit bombs it actually seems a bit ladylike.

In any case, I can’t imagine an era when I wouldn’t have worn it, despite of it’s reputation.  As far as I know, there was never anything quite like Tabu, and there still isn’t today…

Top notes are listed as: orange, spices, neroli, bergamot, and coriander (I’m loving coriander notes right now).  Middle notes: cloves, jasmine, ylang ylang, rose and narcissus.  And base notes are: amber, sandalwood, patchouli, musk, benzoin, vetiver, cedar, oakmoss and civet.

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Lately, I’ve also been enjoying Tata Harper’s Concentrated Brightening Serum.  It’s fantastic.  

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I was very skeptical, as I always am, when I first starting using it but it’s been one of the best beauty gambles I’ve made in years.  My skin is noticeably improved and besides the improved appearance it feels healthier.  I’ve been using it in combination with Dr. Hauschka (I’m pretty loyal to that brand) but I’m tempted to try the other Tata Harper products because not only is this line quite safe and natural but the products smell pretty too…

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Have a nice rest of your day, a great start to your weekend.  🙂

Dahlia Noir

Dahlia Noir (Givenchy 2011) is a clean surface of sweet florals that descends into a powdery, “dark” heart.  It’s a pretty scent.  It’s very modern and very pleasing.

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According to Frangrantica it is touted as a “dangerous” fragrance – a, “…’Fatal Flower’ of unreal and imaginative composition for mysterious and fascinating women.”  But, I’m not sure that it lives up to that amount of intrigue, and actually the thing is, it’s not edgy at all.  The “mystery” of the scent, or the “darkness,” seems more like dramatic pretense, to be honest, than something romantic and menacing.  🙂  It’s an olfactory act, and years from now it will smell like that (it already does)- the same way that certain manners of speech from the past seem comical and fake now but in the past seemed cool, tough or attractive.

None-the-less, it is pretty… And I would wear it again.

Before wearing a sample of Dahlia Noir, I used a sample of Dr. Hauschka’s Regenerative Body Cream.  It was more than ok, but not fantastic.

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Dr. Hauschka Regenerating Serum, Regenerating Day Cream, and a sample of Regenerating Body Moisturizer

It was very quickly absorbed, and left my skin quite soft and supple for a long time.  It also had a creamy, but not heavy richness. It was nice. The only word of caution I would offer is that it had a slightly waxy, lemony scent, which doesn’t particularly linger on the skin for long, but is initially noticeable.  I would use this product again, but I might be careful not to use it with other scents that could be affected by the waxy lemon quality.

On a related note, I really appreciate Dr. Hauschka as a brand, because I feel that many of their products  really work and are healthy to use on a regular basis.  Dr. Hauschka also helped clear up my skin.

I always had trouble with acne, but then I discovered the Clarifying Day Oil (formally Normalizing Day Oil), and the Hauschka method of only using moisturizers during the day.  My skin was changed.  Then, I tried just washing my face with water and exfoliating it periodically with baking soda, and in combination with the Dr. Hauschka products and regimen my skin is now almost constantly clear (with the exception of a few blackheads that require a steaming and a mask) and only rarely do I have any sort of break-out (when I do it’s generally related to extreme stress or illness and it’s a limited breakout).

Anyway, now I use the regenerative serum and day cream instead of the clarifying oil, but my skin is still as clear as before. I really do recommend Dr. Hauschka products (No one is paying me to say that).

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The start of Christmas deocrations… grey knit shirt by Mossimo, olive green leather belt by Ellen Tracy, vintage orange skirt, Banana Republic brown tights, dark brown Delman leather boots, vintage cobalt blue glass bead pendant

We put up our Christmas Tree this weekend. 🙂  I know it’s early, but it’s nice to have cheeful lights on dark winter evenings.  🙂

Until Wednesday.  🙂

Candy

Cheap, harsh and um…  tacky, are not particularly positive ways to describe a fragrance, but alas, they perfectly suit the smell I emit when I wear Prada Candy.

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I’m sure some people waft a scent of gourmand, delicious delight when they wear this perfume based on all the raving reviews it receives on Fragrantica, but it does not work well with my chemistry at all.  At all.  A few posts back I wrote that Taylor Swift’s Wonderstruck smelled slightly cheap, well, after smelling Candy on my skin I can no longer call Wonderstruck cheap, as it would mean placing it in the same category as Prada Candy.

Thankfully, I didn’t buy Candy, I only used a sample…  Also, it doesn’t have a lot of sillage so it wasn’t a disaster to wear it in public places.  (I was able to leave the house without having to take another shower.)

In case you’re wondering, Candy was released by Prada in 2011.  It has notes of musk, benzoin and caramel.  And, as I said before, it might smell delightful on someone else, so I would suggest trying it as a sample if you are so inclined.

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I also recently sampled La Prairie Cellular Swiss Ice Crystal Cream. As an anti aging cream it does deliver in that it leaves the skin with diminished wrinkles and a soft dewy quality, but it’s also heavy, greasy (it lays on the skin) and is relatively expensive.  Furthermore, as I said in my previous posts, (sorry to sound like a broken record) I’m not sure of the safety of all the ingredients in this cream – I don’t think La Prairie is known as a “natural” company of any sort… So, since its ingredients are suspect, it didn’t wow me as much as other recent Omorovicza samples I’ve tried and it’s within the same price range, if not slightly more costly, I would easily recommend Omorovicza anti-aging products above La Prairie.  Sadly, I think La Prairie rests on their name, more than their quality….  😦

And on another less than happy note, my birthday is coming up in the very nearish future.  Unhappy because I have a history of bad birthday experiences (snowstorms, sickness, and general yuckiness) and I’m bracing myself for this year instead of just, “letting it happen.” (Hence mentioning it in this blog – although last year was actually one of the two birthdays I’ve had that were really nice.)  I’ve already purchased a few things for myself online that I really wanted without regard to cost (I’m usually more cautious) and as jaded and materialistic as that sounds, it does make me feel a little better.

See, for the record, I don’t think buying expensive, pretty things you really want once in a while is bad…  or materialistic.  There’s nothing wrong with enjoying beautiful things within moderation.  And, after all, if it’s my way of making sure I’m not feeling super gloomy on my birthday, I think it’s worth it.  I mean, every life is special and should be celebrated in a way that speaks to that individual’s soul – especially on their birthday in my opinion.  I like enjoying beauty (not things, just to clarify), even if that means buying my own ticket to the show…  (One of my best birthdays was when I turned 14 and my father gave me a pair of tickets to see the Nutcracker ballet performed live.)

And really, I think birthdays can be a bummer for a lot of people – like everything terrible about the worst Valentine’s Day on a much more personal level.  You can’t quip that birthdays were just created by greeting card companies to make money…  🙂

So, for all of you who read this who have had a bad birthday this year, well, a belated happy birthday, and I’m sincerely sorry…  😦

I feel better…

Until tomorrow.  🙂

Just because it’s near my birthday:

Frou Frou, Let Go

Empire of the Sun, Walking on a Dream

Taylor Swift, Shake it Off

The Black Keys, Tighten Up

The Rolling Stones, Gimme Shelter

Perez Prado, Cherry Pink and Apple Blossom White

Matt and Kim, Daylight

Peter, Bjorn and John, Young Folks

Colonia

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I first heard about Acqua Di Parma Colonia (Acqua Di Parma 1916) when I was reading The Celebrity Fragrance Guide.  It was one of Audrey Hepburn’s favorite scents and since I adore Audrey Hepburn I was prompted to give it whirl and buy some.

However, after splurging on a blind buy bottle of Acqua Di Parma Colonia I discovered that it is often considered a unisex fragrance, if not leaning more towards the masculine side (it was also a favorite of Cary Grant and David Niven – two other fabulous endorsements)…  I was a little worried – I wasn’t in the mood for a manly scent experience.  So, I looked at the The Celebrity Fragrance Guide again to make sure that I had found the right scent favored by Ms. Hepburn and I just hoped she would wear something nice…

Thankfully, it is a truly unisex scent  (I should never had have doubted Audrey Hepburn’s taste for a second), and it could easily be worn by a woman or a man, and really, it’s just glorious. It paints a beautiful scene: a perfect Mediterranean veranda, and above you is the dazzling sun, to your left there’s deep cerulean temperate waters and to your right a dark man (probably Cary Grant in To Catch a Thief) with a white shirt and a red scarf is peeling the perfect orange.

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Acqua Di Parma Colonia notes are listed as amber, Bulgarian rose, jasmine, lavender, lemon verbena, patchouli, rosemary, sandalwood, Sicilian citrus, vetiver and white musk.  I believe, out of this instant favorite, I smell the citrus, lemon verbena, sandalwood and vetiver the most.

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I also enjoyed wearing the very moisturizing, very respectable Omorovicza Gold Hydralifting Mask.  It has the most lovely smell of roses, and it really works (hence the respectability).  I worry again about the ingredients being as safe as I would like (I would with most unknown cosmetics – nothing against this brand at all), but it does deliver on its promises, and that’s definitely something special in the cosmetic world.  Frankly, if one had the time to sift through every ingredient it might be worth it with this one, because it really is that nice…

It goes on like a very light moisturizing cream and then, after about ten minutes one simply wipes the excess away, however, there doesn’t seem to be much excess – it absorbs quickly.  It tightens ever so slightly and after about a half an hour your skin looks very different and stays that way for long enough to count!  Lines are diminished, your skin looks a bit brighter, softer and just generally more cheerful – like getting a good night’s sleep when you’re twenty years old, basically. Again, if I had the time, I would look into this product a lot more.

We’re still mostly on track with our eating plan for the week. We had a minor slip up tonight though, because one of us got sick and needed a trip to the doctor.  But, all things considered it’s been a good week…

I’m looking forward to the weekend though.  We need it.  🙂  I bet you do too? 🙂

Until Sunday.  🙂

LouLou

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LouLou by Cacheral  (Cacheral 1987), intrigues me.  The bottle itself is decidedly unique, and the prominent and unusual use of the Tiare flower in the fragrance is a bit captivating. It has a few of my favorite notes, which include orris root, benzoin, violet, and orange blossom with other notes of vanilla, Chinese cinnamon wood, plum and the 1980’s favorite note of tuberose, with a total of 19 notes listed on Frangrantica.com.

I’ve been wearing it off and on with some frequency this week and enjoying it.  LouLou is a very early 1990’s/late 80’s scent and it actually brings back some vague memories of my childhood.  I can faintly remember going to church or formal school functions and smelling this perfume wafting from the clusters of adults scattered about the room. I have one very clear memory of walking up our church steps and smelling something that may have been LouLou, and in this memory I’m, of course, much smaller and those steps seem gigantic…

If I had noticed someone wearing this perfume back then I would have thought they were quite sophisticated.  It really is a pretty scent.  Strangely, I can almost picture what a woman wearing LouLou would have looked like from some sort of compilation of hazy memories: permed, but well groomed “big” hair, an elegant 90’s tailored suit with shoulder pads, pumps, a black quilted Chanel handbag chain purse, and thick Brooke Shields inspired eyebrows.

We’ve been following the Whole Foods Market weekly menu planning guide  with the exception of lunch yesterday when we mixed up the days on purpose and had a chicken salad using balsamic vinegar, Dijon mustard, parsley, black pepper, green pepper and chicken.

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Assembling a few of the ingredients – Dijon mustard, balsamic vinegar, and chopped green onions and parsley

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The final product – Chicken Salad with fresh chopped parsley, fresh ground black pepper, chopped green onions, chicken, Dijon mustard and balsamic vinegar

So far,  I’m very impressed with the Whole Foods planner.  I feel better already and it’s fun to taste all the fresh ingredients.  The guide is also quite easy to follow and we actually have saved money by using it.   Once we use up all the Whole Foods meal ideas I’ll be quickly searching for more  already made healthy menu plans online.

I also received my shipment of facial serum in the mail and with it came some fantastic samples.  I’ve decided to use a few and discuss them .  If you want a ton of great reviews of beauty products I recommend stopping by dandygal or thesushiprincess.  I’ve found very useful advice on both of those blogs.

Supposedly Omorovicza Blue Diamond Concentrate is full of diamond peptides, and in any case, whatever is in it, it seems to work quite well as an anti-ageing serum, as many other reviews suggest.  My skin was smoother, more supple and definitely “younger looking” the few times after I used it – I was genuinely impressed.  My only concern with this product involves the ingredients, ironically.  It’s highly perfumed, and of course, heavily fragranced products often contain a myriad of undesirable chemicals.  So, given my concern over the possible harm caused by any unwanted ingredients I think I would probably not purchase Blue Diamond Concentrate, but it was more than pleasant to try.

On Friday, I’ll be reviewing Omorovicza Gold Hydralifting Mask.  Until then, have a nice rest of your week and if you’re in the midst of the same snowy cold weather we are, stay warm. 🙂