Pre-Holiday 2014: Add some sparkle to your wardrobe & beauty bag!

The idea for this post was sparked the other day while I watched puffy white snowflakes fly all around the streets of Boston. It felt strangely like the holidays. Albeit a tad too early for my taste (being barely Nov 1)!

The snowflakes themselves were sparkling and it made me think of holiday *things* – things that glitter.

Remember, glitter and sparkle aren’t just for pageants and Halloween! The holidays are a perfect time to break out some sparkle. Below are some ideas if you want to get into the Holiday party spirit a little early.

 

  • Deborah Lippman polish: *new* color called “Autumn in New York.” Autumn, winter, whatever. They’re both chilly seasons and this metallic gold polish is perfect for holiday fingers and toes. Click here to check it out: deborah lippmann Luxe Chrome Nail Lacquer; $20

 

DL's "Autumn in New York" hello winter nails

DL’s “Autumn in New York” hello winter nails

 


 

  • Rebecca Minkoff embellished winter white becky blazer: I’ll say it outright, this is pricey. Personally, I wouldn’t buy it because I’d spill red wine, chocolate, or something intensely dark on it. BUT, it’s so lovely, right? I picture it with black skinny jeans or trousers, tank underneath, heels, and a colorful clutch. Perfect for an after work holiday affair. The fabric and sparkles are high quality, picture doesn’t quite do it justice. Click here to check it out: Bloomingdales.com; $428

 

Rebecca Minkoff embellished blazer - so classy, so expensive, wah

Rebecca Minkoff embellished blazer – so classy, so expensive, wah

 


 

  • Splendid sparkle jersey dress: for a hot second I thought, no, this is too springy. But then, I got to talking with the Splendid saleswoman and she mentioned her manager wore it with tights, a pair of booties, and a cute blazer on top. Love it. The gold sparkle (might be hard to see in pic) on the cream color definitely gives off a holiday vibe. It also comes in black with gold sparkle. And love the hem line! Click here to check it out: Splendid.com; $158
Splendid cotton sparkle dress - comfy and whimsical!

Splendid cotton sparkle dress – comfy and whimsical!

 


 

  • Bobbi Brown sparkle eye shadow: new news!  the sparkle shadows are now a permenant part of the Bobbi Brown make up line. I’m a big fan of this brand and these shadows are super fun for the holidays. *11* different sparkly colors to choose from. Click here to check it out: Sephora.com; $32

 

Bobbi Brown sparkle shadow - bling up ya lids

Bobbi Brown sparkle shadow – bling up ya lids

 


 

  • American Apparel sparkle leggings: every lady has to have a pair of sparkly leggings in her wardrobe. They’re more versatile than you think. Spice up that little black dress. Or, pair with some boots and a chunky sweater for a cozy yet fancy, holiday vibe. Click here to check it out: American Apparel Sparkle Pantyhose – White / Silver / XS/S; $10-$20

 

American Apparel sparkle tights - glam up ya gams

American Apparel sparkle tights – glam up ya gams

 


 

  • JoJo Blings earrings: there is literally a color for any occasion and any outfit. These new cushion cut blings in *RUBY* are perfect for the Holidays. And frankly, any time of year. I love JoJo blings to bring a pop of color to any ole outfit choice. Click here to check it out: JoJolovesyou.com; $32
JoJo cushion blings in Ruby - how beautiful are these??

JoJo cushion blings in Ruby – how beautiful are these??

 


 

  • Body Shop glazed apple sparkler: I came across this funky product at the airport. I don’t wear shimmer as much as I used to. I used to coat myself in glitter freshman year of college before going out on Saturday night. I swear, it was the “in” thing to be super sparkly all over. I like this shimmer for two reasons. 1. The packaging is adorable. It has the old fashion perfume puff. 2. It puts out just the right amount of shimmer. It’s not big pieces of glitter but small, silver sparkles that give a little glimmer. Totally fun for a night out. Add a little to your hair? You’re never too old for that! Click here to check it out: TheBodyshop.com; $14.40
Body Shop apple sparkler!

Body Shop apple sparkler!

In-office manis aren’t just for the CEO! CC&NP digs Manicube!

Today I FINALLY tried Manicube…this has been a long time coming for me. Let’s start with…

What is Manicube? (straight from their website):

  • If you dread running beauty errands on lunch breaks and weekends, you are in for a treat. Manicube liaises with your office to come to YOU to provide manicures desk-side or in a conference room. Our manicures are quick without compromising quality so you stay professionally polished. We currently offer services in the New York City and Boston area markets.
  • Manicube’s mission: The mission of Manicube is to make working women’s lives easier.
    • Manicube provides women with confidence by offering manicures at their place of work. We hope to make their lives just a little bit easier while adding a bit of color and delight to their workdays! CC&NP LOVES THIS!

Manicube came to my previous company, Hill Holliday and also comes to Digitas where I now work in Boston.

Manicube set up shop on the 8th floor @ Digitas

Manicube set up shop on the 8th floor @ Digitas

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

How much is it?:

  • I did the Everyday Mani for $15 not including tip (costs go up for other mani options – detailed below)
Manicube options

Manicube’s options

 

 

 

 

 

 

Why I love it:

  • I just love the business idea. I mean, how cool?! It is so smart to me – just knowing how it is being in a busy industry and that getting out of the office for a manicure isn’t usually in the cards. The concept of the mani coming to you is lovely. Also, that your company is essentially saying ‘hey, it’s ok to take a few minutes to yourself to get this done.’ Everyone needs a break once in a while. And we all know (as shallow as it may sound) there is something to “keeping up your appearance” in the professional world . I don’t know about you – but when my nails are all gaggly, I tend to hide my hands! – so hey, treat yourself!
  • You book online – pay with a cc and can include tip up front so all the $$ stuff is out of the way
  • They have a fair cancellation policy. I booked a couple of weeks back and had to cancel last minute. I logged on, cancelled, and they applied a credit to a next visit. I thought that was great. I mean, it happens, sh*t pops up at the last minute so at least you don’t lose your money!

My experience:

  • Today, I went down to the 8th floor where Manicube set up in one of the empty offices

a lot of colors to choose from!

a lot of colors to choose from!

  • My nail tech today was Dina and she was AWESOME. Super friendly and I learned that she also keeps a blog called: DinaDazStyleNInk.blogspot.com. She loves beauty, fashion, and tattoo design. LOVE IT.
  • They had a bunch of different polishes to choose from (pic above). I went with “La Vie En Rose”/pastel petal pink by Deborah Lippman. I was pleasantly surprised to find they carried this brand. It’s on the pricier side – but its good polish and doesn’t include formaldehyde, formaldehyde resin, toluene, dbp (dibutyl phthlate), or camphor, and are not tested on animals. No parabens, or sulfates

look at that pretty polish!

look at that pretty polish! La Vie En Rose by Deborah Lippman

  • It was a nice service – quick, friendly, and relaxing. Within 15 minutes I was done. Dina applied a couple drops of nail-dry oil. And I was out the door with an added spring in my step

love my new manicure - thanks, Dina!

love my new manicure – thanks, Dina!

Seriously, 15 minutes and I was feeling good. I think it’s an excellent idea for companies to offer this type of service. Either because people don’t always have time to get out of the office/fit these things in OR because it’s a nice, simple treat during a hard working day in the corporate world.

Link to Manicube: manicube.com. You can also email them to see if they could come to your office or corporate event @  info@manicube.com

Gifts for girlfriends

Being a good gift giver isn’t easy – balancing generosity, thoughtfulness, and not breaking the bank can be difficult – especially if you have a bunch of people to buy for. If you have a few women in your life that you’ll be giving gifts to – this post is for you.

The idea is – this time of year there are so many great gift sets – but why give one person 4 lipglosses, 3 pairs of socks, or 5 pairs of underwear? Not saying that’s a bad thing BUT –  why not buy a couple/few of these sets, break up the contents, and mix & match to create more diverse gift sets??

Below are a few of my favorite sets by category – some of these items come in ‘miniature’ form in their respective gift sets – making them travel and purse friendly! Check it out!

Fancy polish: Deborah Lippman Nail Lacquer Trio (set of 3; $25 @ Nordstrom)

Deborah Lippman polish mini trio in ‘She’s Always a Woman’ set

    • Deborah Lippman polish is fancy – typically, sold at higher end dept stores and with a hefty (for nail polish) price tag –  but let’s admit it, a fancy polish is a fun indulgence. Especially DL polishes that come in funky colors (including amazing glitter polishes), and with better staying power. This set comes in a set of 3 mini 0.2 oz bottles (regular size is 0.5 oz. $16-$18). Why not split up the bottles? Pop into a couple different stockings to mix it up?? Most women appreciate a new polish (tip: you can always bring your own polish to a nail place – most will be more than happy to do your nails with a color you bring in yourself)

Comfy/lacey undiesHanky Panky Low Rise Thong (5 pack) (set of 5; $89 @ Nordstrom)

Hanky Panky Low Rise Thong set in ‘Stars Variety’

    • My all time favorite undies – in my opinion, the most comfortable, durable (i.e. won’t stretch out) thong you’ll ever wear. HPs come in many different colors. This gift set (among others they have) mix together a few vibrant colors/patterns – break up this pack of 5 and give a few girlfriends a chance to try a comfy, high quality pair of undies. Not only are they comfortable but they are also cute – hello, they’re lace! – and you won’t have to worry about the dreaded ‘VPL’ (visible panty line) when wearing this thong with dress pants

High-class scented candle: Molton Brown – Langour Piccolo candle set (set of 4; $58 @ Saks)

Molton Brown Langour Piccolo gift set

    • Another thing people resist buying themselves = fancy candles. If you put them in your bedroom or around the bathtub, a nice scented candle can really set the mood of a room. This set comes in a beautiful box but why not break up the 4 candles, wrap each in tissue paper, and drop one in a gift bag or bring alongside a bottle of wine as a romantic hostess gift?
    • Tocca candles; set of 4 – another great set!

Cozy socks: Nap Socks (set of 3; $19.99 @ Brookstone) OR Victoria’s Secret PINK Sock Set (set of 3; $19.50 @ Victoria’s Secret)

NAP Socks in ‘Eggplant’ set

Victoria’s Secret PINK in ‘white/heather/grey/purple’ set

    • A new pair of socks is typically an appreciated, practical gift. Both of these sets offer function alongside style. The Nap socks are super soft and great for lounging – while the Vicky socks are perfect for boot-wearing or layering in cold weather. Break up the 3 pack of socks and pair (pardon the pun) with a candle, and give somebody a relaxation package – kick your feet up, light a candle, and relax…

Luxurious mini hand cream: L’Occitane Hand Indulgences Hand Cream Set (set of 3; $28 @ L’Occitane)

L’Occitane Hand Indulgences gift set

  • A purse must-have in the winter is a moisturizing hand cream. L’Occitane is known for rich and pleasant smelling creams. This set comes in a trio as well. You could pair one of these creams with a Deborah Lippman polish to create a hand pampering package

Purse-size scent: Victoria’s Secret Eau de Parfum Gift Set (set of 7; $40 @ Victoria’s Secret)

Victoria’s Secret Eau de Parfum set

  • Another purse essential is a mini perfume for quick fragrance touch ups. This set by VS comes with 7 mini perfumes – complete with beautiful bottles. Each scent is different which is great, so you can split up and not worry that everyone will suddenly be wearing the same scent 😉 Pair a perfume with the hand cream to create a purse essentials gift kit or maybe pair with the undies for a more sexy gift set

Cute lip-gloss: MAC ‘Guilty Passions’ Cocktail Coral Lipgloss Set (set of 4; $32.50 @ Nordstrom, MAC etc.)

MAC ‘Guilty Pleasures’ lipgloss set

  • I truly believe, a girl can never have too many lipglosses. This set by MAC combines 4 fun colors – in various shades of pink. Break up this set and pair a gloss with the purse-size scent and hand cream to create a fuller purse essentials gift kit or pair with the DL nail polish for a mini make-over gift set

Overall, gift sets make it easier to sample. Combining a couple of these items with a thoughtfully written holiday card would be the perfect gift for a female friend, family member, or co-worker!

thank you, Robyn! for being the inspiration behind this post.

The Nail polish index…

Essie Fall 2011 Nail Polish Colors - go get em'

I came across this article in Time Magazine a couple weeks ago – it helped explain why we might gravitate towards that ‘little’ lip gloss purchase, or new bottle of nail polish even when money is tight. I like to spin these purchases as simple pleasures…those, “why not? it’s only $10!’ investments.

Well, this article sheds light on this habit and how it’s a trend of our times…

The premise of the article and The Lipstick Index itself: “When the economy is weak, most consumers cut back on nonessentials and instead spend their money on the little luxuries–for example, lipstick.”
Why?
  • Because: “Makeup is a cheap thrill for penny-pinched shoppers.” it’s a lot easier to justify than a pair of $150 jeans!

Proof:

  • “During the 2001 recession, lipstick sales soared even as the overall economy declined.”
  • The term “Lipstick Index” was coined around this time by Estée Lauder chairman emeritus Leonard Lauder
What does this mean for us now, in 2011? And what does this have to do with nail polish?
  • Well, according to Time: “Lipstick sales are up 14% this year. And nail polish, which more recently has become a bellwether of economic turbulence, has risen an even more disturbing 54%. “Nail polish has become the heir to lipstick in this recession,” says Lauder. “I picked up this signal from my granddaughters. All of a sudden, there was all this nail enamel in crazy colors.”
Proof:
  • Estée Lauder just recorded its best North American sales in a decade. 
Interesting…I guess!
So, buy on my friends…the article said it bestwe may be headed into a double dip, but we’ll go there looking fabulous.”

Hot off the press…Newsprint Nails!

Just saw the coolest nails today! I had heard about this manicure before (saw pics online) but assumed it would be too difficult to do yourself – and that you’d have to go to a nail salon and pay big bucks. Well, I was pleasantly surprised today when a co-worker showed off her ‘homemade’ newsprint nails – take a look:

She said it wasn’t hard to do at all – it just takes some additional time than a regular polish job and a couple extra supplies

What you need:

  • Nail polish – make sure the color isn’t too dark or the newsprint won’t show up (think light greys, blues, tans, pinks etc.)
  • Rubbing alcohol (a small amount is fine)
  • A couple pages of newspaper!
  • Top coat

The process:

  1. Paint your nails
  2. Let your nails dry. You can add a top coat as well – but just remember to let them DRY
  3. Next, grab the rubbing alcohol – using the cap (or a shot glass!) dip each of your finger nails/tips into the rubbing alcohol. The rubbing alcohol with wet the tops of the nails this prepares them for ‘printing’
  4. Take a piece of newspaper, and one nail at a time, press a piece of the newspaper onto the nail bed – hold for ~15 seconds
    • Tip: you can look through the newspaper to find cool blurbs of text, or funky fonts – whatever you want! The idea is, anything you find in the newspaper you can transpose onto your nail…it seems like most people go with black & white text vs. images (considering you only have so much nail space to work with!)
  5. Carefully peel off the newspaper from each nail. Use a fresh piece/section of the newspaper for each nail
  6. Let it air dry for a couple of seconds and then apply a top coat to seal it all in
  7. Let dry and ENJOY!

What do you think, will you try it out? Have you already tried the newsprint nails? Please Share!