Sephora Therapy

October 27, 2009

Aah Sephora F&F, an occasion to get beautiful. Of COURSE I have to post about what I got (and would get if I had a money tree). Beauty has always been my first love; it’s how I first became introduced to higher end brands – first starting with MAC and then spilling over to other companies – and from there, growing into an awareness (or got suckered into, depends how you look at it) for quality products and pretty packaging.


I tried to hold myself to a higher standard of consumerism and buy what I really needed – as of now, this is skincare, since my epidermis has been freaking out on me for the past couple months, leaving me scarred, literally and figuratively. I’ve had to deal with breakouts at the age of 23! I thought teen acne sucked, well that was expected and pretty normal. Adult acne is so much worse, because everyone else seems to have grown out of that phase and into clear, supple skin. Sigh. When will it be my turn?? For now, I’ve been putting everything that promises clear skin into my shopping cart, so we’ll see how they go.

(Oh, and of course I didn’t just buy skincare. Try as I might, I couldn’t not have fun with this F&F discount, since it only comes once a year! I rationalized things with 1. my skin needs it and 2. I wouldn’t have bought it without 20% off. Most of the thigns I ended up with falls into this second basket)

Here we go!

Philosophy Purity Made Simple – gentle cleanser for my sensitive, easily irritated skin. Bought the 8oz to try. This got lots of rave reviews, and my Mario Badescu creamy cleanser is too filmy and doesn’t leave me with a bare-skin feeling,

DDF Ultra-Lite Oil-Free Moisturizing Dew – forever in search of a new moisturizer. Currently using Olay Complete, which is fine, but hey, I like trying new things. This one is a gel and only has 3 ingredients, which I appreciate, since most lotions are packed with bad irritants ending in some variation of -ol (read: alcohol). It’s good so far, nothing bad about it.

Fresh Sugar Lip Treatment – love love love lip products. Lip and cheek stuff are my favorite makeup items (Michelle, I’m with you on that one!), and this is a much raved about cult favorite that I had to try. At $22.50, it wasn’t a lip balm I was willing to pay full price for, but I’m loving it! Super smooth and moisturizing, smells lemony also. I keep one next to my bed and one in my purse. yup, that means I got two – ordered the Rose version after I got the regular one!

Living Proof Straight Making No Frizz Styling Cream for Medium to Thick Hair – this is probably my favorite product of the bunch. Created by MIT researchers as an alternative to silicone, this cream was designed to tame frizz and smooth hair to be ultra touchable.  LOVE how it makes my hair feel! Seriously, it makes it so soft to the touch, I just love running my hair through it. With other anti-frizz products, I’m afraid to touch my hair throughout the day since it adds to the oilyness and drags it down, but Living Proof doesn’t make my hair greasy at all. Usually, I airdry so I haven’t tested this out against heat, but I’ve read that performance only improves with irons and curlers.


Clarisonic Replacement Brush Head in Delicate – havn’t been using my Clarisonic since I’ve been on this new oral antibiotic and Epiduo gel combo (told you I’m trying everything! Including this concoction my dermatologist prescribed… I’m not liking it though, it makes my skin burn and sting sometimes), but after I finish this month and am able to get back with my Clarisonic brush, hopefully this Delicate head will be gentle enough to still clean my skin.

Marc Jacobs Daisy – in my fantasy world, I have a zillion cute bottles of perfume sitting primly on a dresser, but in reality, I just don’t use enough scent to warrant buying all the pretty bottles out there.  That’s why perfume roller balls are the perfect solution for me, trial size versions that are portable so I can put it on whenever I remember! I chose Marc Jacobs Daisy. It’s light (i.e. appropriate for the office), with a dry flowery scent that has me sniffing my wrists even after 10 hours at work.

Shiseido The Skincare Hydro Nourishing Softener – I use so much drying products in an attempt to zap out all the oil in my skin that sometimes, a little moisture is necessary. This toner is supposed to refresh dried out skin and give back moisture. Shiseido is an outstanding skincare company, so I’m looking forward to good results!


 Sephora F&F ends November 2, 2009 so you still have some time to browse and decide on what to buy, but some items are already out of stock, so don’t wait too long!

Blushing Winter Cheeks

October 21, 2009

It’s not hard to tell that shu uemura is a definite Coastalpolitan favorite! I can’t help but fall in love each time I walk by the counter at the mall and although my collection is small and humble, my shu uemura goodies are fun and irreplaceable!

Like Janice, I’m absolutely obsessed with blushes. “Um, why do you have so many?” is a reaction I get most often whenever a friend rummages through my makeup bag. So that I can have one color to fit each mood and setting, of course! Plus, what girl doesn’t love pink (okay, maybe that’s just me)?

The current look I’ve been aiming for is the perfect pink hue–the kind that’s usually triggered by walking outside on a cold day. As most of my days are spent indoors (boo.), I had to find something to help me fake this illusion. I actually bought two blushes to add to my collection recently, Glow On in M Pink 30 and P Peach 45, but M Pink 30 is the one I’m in LOVE with. Gorgeous color that it is, the color seemed a bit overwhelming to me in the beginning. However, I’ve finally mastered layering this on with the perfect light swipes and haven’t worn any other blush since!


As luck would have it, you can pick up Pink 30 (1 of the 3 shu blushes offered) for 20% off via Sephora’s F&F Sale!

EDIT: Unfortunately, these beauties are all sold out on, but trust me when I say that this is worth the $21 regular price!

Sephora Friends & Family 2009

October 20, 2009

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sephora-holidaySephora’s Friend’s and Family started today and runs until November 2. I haven’t had much time to think of all the fun things I want to get, so all I have picked up so far are the Fresh Soy Face Cleanser and Soy Face Cream. After getting a facial at the Fresh Espace back in April, I’m in LOVE with their products and am excited about the chance to incorporate them into my daily skincare regime! I have read so many great reviews and the fact that they smell so fresh (I know, I know, but it’s so true!) is just an added bonus. If I can think of some great undereye or anti-aging treatments, I’m definitely in for another order before this ends…

Although the promo hasn’t been advertised nearly as much as in the past (what, no special flyer or email notification, Sephora?), you can enter FF2009 for 20% off your entire purchase. Remember you get 3 free samples of your choice and free shipping on orders over $50.

Cheers to the start of F&F savings for us all!

Stomping in Puddles

October 16, 2009

Happy Friday!!! Although it’s gray and cold outside, Fridays are always a reason to be happy.  This weekend promises to be a wet and sloshy one, with rain and more rain. How to tell if your area will require an umbrella and/or galoshes? Try this website – straight to the point and hilarious. It also stores your location info, and helpfully suggests whether to bring an umbrella. Funny, before I moved to New York, I never checked the weather, there wasn’t a reason to. It still hasn’t become a habit yet, so I just keep an umbrella in my bag at all times or go to Duane Reade to buy one (which I’ve done oh, 4 times).

For those brave enough to go out, I’ve come across some cute rainboots to equip you for some quality puddle jumping:


Burberry Mid Calf Check rain boot on sale at Nordstrom’s for $99.90. The website doesn’t show it as on sale, but anything ending in $.90 at Nordstrom’s signals a discounted cost. Good for those who like the iconic design of Burberry but don’t want to pay 2X the price tag.


A more subtle, gorgeous alternative from Burberry. Love the deep berry color that stands out in the rain. The tall boot is also more accomodating for wider calves, which from personal experience, should not ever have anything cutting it off at midcalf.  If I didn’t already have this pair from Jeffrey Campbell, I’d get these in a heartbeat.


Hunter rainboots ($115) are a perennial favorite, and are available in short and tall lengths in a rainbow of colors. Yellow wellies stomping around on rainy days are just so happy! I’d want a fun pair to beat the rainy blues. A lot of retailers carry these, I’d wait until there is a coupon code to grab these (Piperlime would be a good bet with their 20% off coupons).

And just for fun, here are some adorable Tokidoki rainboots! These bring out my cheeky side who loves Hello Kitty and all cute animations. Ee! (There are also Hello Kitty rainboots available by the same maker but even I know some limits of embarassment).


This weekend is Saks Friends & Family 25% off. Burberry and Hunter are both not one of the many exclusions. Excuse the double negative, both are included! You can use this to get rainboots or anything else you’ve been saving up to get!


Reverse-Reverse Online Outlet

October 15, 2009

I recently discovered‘s online outlet, Reverse and can’ t believe I didn’t know about it earlier! The site offers real deals on a bevy of goodies, free returns (like its parent company), and $5 flat rate shipping on all orders. After some quick perusing, I’m excited to say that there are definitely some great finds!

Gaspard Yurkievich Scallop HeelGaspard Yurkievich Scallop Back Heel (orig. $381, sale $141) I la-LOVE the orange detailing and scalloped back! Why, oh why can’t I be a size 8?!?

Susan Monaco BaratheaSusana Monaco Barathea Tie Coat (orig. $550, sale $193) I’m always on the lookout for perfect white coats and this one is absolutely gorgeous. The cropped sleeves and dainty collar are a perfect contrast to the more traditional winter coat.

Michelle Mason Halter DressMASON by Michelle Mason Belted Halter Dress (orig. $352, sale $124) A girl can never have too many black dresses! This would be an instant classic for a night out and the pockets and plunging neckline make it fun as well.

With so many options, this will quickly become one of my favorite online shopping destinations. Sample sale prices without the hassle of waiting for start times or worrying about no return policies!! Reverse is by invite-only so click here to join! 🙂

Wolford = Warm Fuzzies

October 14, 2009

Just wanted to comment on this amazing pair of tights that is keeping me warm today while walking to work and running some errands during the afternoon. Wolford’s Opaque Polar Tights have a super warm, fuzzy lining alongside its interior that creates a much more substantial barrier against wind and cold, so much more effective than the hole-y fabric of tights. Like fleece for your legs!! Soft soft soft like the first time you wear it before washing.  The fibers are created using a moden knitting technique technology for extra durability. One of the commonly touted benefits of Wolford is that it lasts forever, which is three times longer than I can say for my other pairs (I’m looking at you Hue and DKNY!)


These do look like any ordinary pair but Google images assures me these are Wolford Polar tights

The outer surface of the tights is totally opaque and matte, unlike the soft satiny sheen that normal tights give, so it’s a tradeoff.  But what’s cool is the vertical ribbing on the outside (the fuzzy internal lining is stitched in vertical panes), adding a pattern to otherwise plain legwear.

Wolford tights are pretty expensive – retail is $68 for this pair – but I snatched these up in 2 minutes at the Ruelala sale awhile back for 50% off!  Literally, I set an alarm for the sale to begin since I knew my size and the opaque black pairs were sure to go quickly.  Years of piano and facebooking (now twittering) have trained my fingers to be super speedy and accurate in clicking.  I checked out with the Polar pair, and another dark brown (“Mocca”) pair which is more breathable.  The dark brown is the go to during a cool summer/brisk fall day, whereas the ones I’m wearing today I consider my industrial strength tights.

Creators at Wolford, you guys are geniusesss.

Mmmilitary Coats

October 14, 2009

A guy in uniform may not do it for me, but there’s something about a military coat – the epaulets, the big buttons, the double breast maybe? – that really tingles my aesthetic senses. It’s only the first few weeks of October and already I’m feeling the chill in New York City; it’s a good day if the temps are up around the mid-60’s. If this were school, that would be an almost fail. NYC is an autumn fail, skipping past the gentle transition and plodding straight through to winter. BUT! The “almost” is salvaged by cozy scarves and warm coats to snuggle into… starting with beautiful military style coats that I’m loving:


Browsing through VS, this coat immediately caught my eye. Dark navy coats are a great way to change up the usual black jacket, and the double columns of buttons nip in on top, and flares out with a pleat. Girly on bottom to balance out the military look. The model’s hair is in the way, but I think there are also epaulets on the shoulders! Once you have one or two basic coats, the next step is to shop for details, details. Given a choice, I would definitely go for the Sangria Red, yup.

Then, I went snooping around the Internet for other variations of this coat, and omg I found my dream military jacket, the Stella McCartney Felt coat, as seen on Anne Hathaway and Demi. DROOL, the color, the horizontal closures, the tie belt. If only, if only.


(photo by

Adding a Perfect Touch with Pearls

October 11, 2009

Lately, I’ve become absolutely obsessed with accessorizing with pearls. As a little girl, I was gifted with a pink strand and was adamant about wearing them everywhere. Now at the age of 23, I remember why I always loved them. They’re a perfect way to dress up any outfit! Check out one of my favorite looks spotted recently on One Tree Hill (I know, no one watches this show but me):


Just found Tiffany’s style blog recently and am loving it (I think it’s my new favorite blog of the moment)! Her post here shows a beautiful pearl necklace from Marika King that I am dying to get my hands on! It’s sold out for now, but will hopefully be available again soon.

I picked up a simple long strand of pearls from Nordie’s recently and am going to keep my eye out for more to add to my collection. They will be the perfect touch to my darker fall/winter wardrobe. Here are a few other pieces that have caught my eye:

betsey johnson tulle trim necklaceBetsey Johnson Tulle Trim Pearl Necklace ($48). It’s simple and elegant, and the black tulle adds a fun touch! The black and white effect offers some similarity to the Marika King one.

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Nordstrom Long Strand Illusion Glass Pearl Necklace ($48). I’m loving the layering possibilities and the fact that the pearls are spaced farther apart.

forever21 satin chain necklaceForever21 is always an easy stop for fun and cheap accessories. Here’s a pretty strand of faux pearls with a blush pink satin ribbon interwoven throughout. Priced at only $6.80, I love!

And just for fun, I saw this while shopping in SF last weekend. With a price tag of $598, it’s probably a bit out of my price range, but looked so gorgeous wrapped up in a row of 4. I will probably have to stick with more affordable pieces for now, but am going to love all the fun possibilities they offer! Wear more than one piece at a time, tie on a satin ribbon, take them out to play or off to work. Why not have some fun with a classic staple?