Sunday, July 31, 2011

The Beauty Spotlight Team: What's inside Modesty Brown's Makeup Bag?

Yes indeed, it's time for another Beauty Spotlight Mystery Makeup Bag! This lovely bag belongs to Modesty Brown. Apparently Ms. Modesty cheated a bit this time and decided to plan this bag - showing us what is going to be in her HOLIDAY bag! Sounds like fun, right?

Since it's a holiday bag, I'm betting there's some glittery goodness in store as well as some rich lip colors. I'll be honest, I haven't peaked yet.

What do you think is in Modesty Brown's Bag?

Please tell me your guesses below?

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Quest For My Pretty - Weekly Weight Loss Report

Why the face, right? Well, last night the softball team that I am on almost  won a game. We're the team that can't seem to get it together. Plus, I have a cursed glove. It just won't actually catch anything right now! Stuff just falls out of it. The exact opposite of the magic glove I had at the beginning of the season. Well, we were ahead by 8 runs at one point and I said to our captain "If we win, I'm totally email-blasting EVERYBODY" and there was our jinx. Le sigh.

What does this have to do with my weight loss? Isn't it obvious? After the game we HAD to go celebrate (really?) at Sammy's. I had my usual tilapia fajitas but I also consumed two very large margaritas. I've found that if I do this the day before the weigh in, it just never works out very well. Skip the margs, bettter weigh in.

Weight: 154.4 (-0.2 lb)

I'll take it, though I honestly with all the work Leandro and his Brazil Butt Lift is having me do I thought it would be a little more of a drop. Maybe next week.

My Healthy Snack Effort
Some of you may know I've purchased a dehydrator in order to make healthier snacks. Well, the jerky was a bust. It was horrible. Anyone have a good recipe out there?

By the way, if you want to join me on my Quest for my Pretty my incentives still stand.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

My Review: Send The Trend's New My Style Room!

Screen capture of my current "My Style" Room
I first learned about Send The Trend's new My Style room directly from Divya Gugnani (co-founder of Send The Trend). She told me as a good customer she wanted to share this room with her. She also wanted me to have a look at this Techcrunch article on the new feature. The result was that Divya and I got into a discussion over email about things I'd love to see on Send the Trend - low and behold the next morning I had access to My Style. Oh the power of Twitter and Social Media! Naturally, I wanted to share my experience with you.

What is My Style?
The My Style room is a place where you the Send the Trend shopper can gather the items that YOU like and share them with your friends (similar to Polyvore but not quite as sophisticated yet). You are able to provide a picture of yourself, load the room with your own selections, and BE the curator of your own accessories collection. The idea itself is something I've wanted for a good long while now, especially as a way to keep track of my own purchases!

My Experience with My Style
As I went through the My Style set up, I took notes to share with Divya on my wishes as a user. I'll spare you the "bugs" and issues I found as a user experience specialist (yes, I was "showing my inner geek" a bit too much) but here are my hopes for My Style as it continues to grow:
  • Default items in the room COULD be the items we as the consumer have purchased.
  • It would be nice to move items around, pair items we wear often together, and basically customize the display (currently it appears to populate by random).
  • When sharing on Facebook and Twitter, I really wanted to attach a picture of my My Style room for people to see! Right now it just defaults to the STT logo.
  • As I get my friends (and readers hopefully) involved in the My Style portion of the site, I want to see not just the "top stylists" but also ones that I personally have chosen to follow. 
  • I absolutely want to upload more pictures of myself wearing more pieces! Seriously, seeing items worn is the best way for me to tell if I want to purchase something so why not allow it?
  • So many of the things I like are now "Sold out" - that can be a bit of a negative thing for a fellow follower to see. Might be nice to have a Past Items area as well as a current items area.
The ability to "Add to My Style" is easy - the function is located in the upper left hand corner of the images on the site. This makes it easy to keep track of the things that catch your eye. It's awesome for shoppers like me who like to "bookmark" things for later purchases (or impulse buys when STT sends out a coupon).

Anyway, check my My Style site out if you want to get an idea what it's like.  And of course, you can always "Vote for My Style" if you like it. I'd be honored.

I am not affiliated with Send The Trend. I was not promised compensation for this review, though when I sent my brief report to Divya she decided to send me a free accessory to thank me for my feedback.

Look of the Night: The Seven Year Itch

This look of the night would not be possible without the generosity of the lovely Lianne Farbes (the Makeup Girl) from who I won MAC Hocus Pocus.

Face of the Night - July 22, 2011

Best of all, it's my first MAC color that has the word "Sample" on the back. Only a makeup geek like me would find that cool.
Face of the Night - July 22, 2011

  • Urban Decay Primer Potion
  • MAC Eye Kohl in Smolder
  • MAC Eye Shadow in Hocus Pocus
  • MAC Pigment in Vanilla
  • Inglot AMC Pigment in 65
  • MAC Plushlash Mascara in Plushblack
  • Mary Kay Timewise Foundation in Ivory 6
  • MAC Powder in Truth & Light
  • MAC beauty Powder Blush in Secret Blush
Face of the Night - July 22, 2011
  • MAC Cremesticks Liner in Pink Treat
  • OCC Cosmetics Lip Tar in Momento - Seriously loving this will be writing something up about Lip Tars soon.

The Anniversary
This past weekend my husband and I celebrated our 7th year anniversary. While we were married on July 23rd, we actually celebrated this year on July 22. Why? My mom and my aunt were coming down to visit from Ann Arbor. We were going to see the Reds play on Saturday, and somehow we wanted to squeeze in a super romantic foodie dinner at Boca Saturday evening. We couldn't go Friday because my husband was expecting to be back late, and the idea of driving down to Cincinnati on Sunday didn't appeal to us. Then a stroke of luck - one of my husband's meetings got canceled and Boca was able to take us Friday evening. So I threw this together really fast.

Outfit of the Night - July 22, 2011

I also threw on a dress my husband purchased for me several years ago in the Juniors department from Macy's that I've never been able to fit into. Also, Mr. Styrch requested I wear my glasses because I have this horrible history of getting cornea abrasions from bad contact lenses on our anniversary when we eat at Boca (it happened once).

Sunday, July 24, 2011

The Beauty Spotlight Team - Week of July 23rd

Get your glow on! Pammy Blogs Beauty shares her top self-tanning tips and  tricks.

Over at Lipstick Musings, Shannon's got a sweet tooth...and she's craving more of Laura Mercier's Luster Eye Shadow in Chocolate!

Visionary Beauty checks out the Mediterranean inspired Penelope Kaleidoscope from Le Metier de Beaute.

This week Modesty Brown goes nude with Kevyn Aucoin's Expert Lip Tint in ThelmaDora.

Cindy over at Prime Beauty shows you five must-have pink blushes for a fresh summer sun-kissed glow.

Makeup Merriment shares a great summer eyeshadow, Chanel Ombre d'Eau eyeshadow in Delta, with us. Check your stash to see if you have this too.

Find out what animal Marcia from Beauty Info Zone compares Napoleon Perdis lipsticks to and see if this is something that you do too.

Styrch at Pretty in Dayton gets frisky with her little bottle of LP No. 9 for Women by Penhaligons, LTD.

Perilously Pale gives us sneak peek swatches and a review of the Le Metier de Beaute Silk Road Kaleidoscope Eye Kit from the upcoming Fall/Winter 2011 Collection.

The nut jobs at Beauty Crazed have obviously been addled by the heat and are giving away a crazy amount of makeup - go enter before they come to their senses!

Londonmakeupgirl got a sneak peek at what you can expect to see from Selfridges for Holiday 2011. There's another beauty advent calendar, and some beautiful palettes from Bobbi Brown and Suqqu. Have a look here: Selfridges Christmas in July.

Paula, from Older Girl Beauty, wants to tell you about the Clarisonic Deep Pore Cleansing brush head and give one of them to you (*and your BFF!). She'll even throw in a Mia to use it with, too!

Zuzu's Petals at Everyday Beauty reevaluates what beauty represents for her and wonders what it means to you and how your views have evolved over the years.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Coveted Item of the Week: Fall Shoes Pour La Victoire Style, Particularly Irina

Monday I received a noticed from Pour La Victoire that they have started getting fall shoes online. So I had to take a look...

Coveted Item of the Week: Pour La Victoire Irina Shoes in Red Patent - $255

You have to admit that when you take a look at a sole that is totally checkered your heart takes a leap. If it doesn't then you must be made of stone! These shoes are the perfect mix of totally conservative with a hint of whimsical naughtiness. You can't tell me you don't want to put on a pair of these and strut around in a cute skirt! I do! And if I do, then I can't be the only one. Because usually... (and this is a secret mind you) I'm not a fan of wearing dresses and skirts. I'm such a jeans girl!

I'm dying over these Irina Shoes in Red Patent. While the do also come in Black Patent, Carmel Patent, and White Patent... I think I just have to go with the Red Patent. I could make a case for the white or black, however.

Of course I also think of Irina Derevko, my favorite Alias character. Could she rock these? Of course she could. She's Lena Olin! She can rock whatever she wants and I'll be happy to watch her rock it.

Will I Get Them?
Sadly probably not. I don't think these shoes are in my budget at the moment. Hopefully I'll get lucky and I'll be able to find them on sale off-season. But I sort of doubt it. Something this special doesn't stay around long enough to go on sale.

All Images are from Pour La Victoire.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Apparently, Ann Loves Dayton: Ann Taylor Opens Concept Store at The Greene

Ann Taylor Concept Store - Trip July 16th

 Nestled conveniently between Ann Taylor Loft and just a few steps away from Sephora at the Greene Town Center is a new Ann Taylor store. But this one supposedly is SPECIAL. In fact, there are only a handful of THIS type of Ann Taylor store around, or so I'm told. They are located in New York, Miami, Atlanta, Seattle, Dallas, Boca Raton, and Pheonix. And now, Ann Taylor Concepts has come to Dayton.

Ann Taylor Concept Store - Trip July 16thOn July 5th I received a notice from an Ann Taylor PR person that Ann Taylor was opening a new "Concepts" store at The Greene.  This letter informed me that it was a different type of Ann Taylor store. an "extension of the brand's rejuvenation". Apparently Ann is trying to overhaul her image, be more fashion forward, and focus on "ease" and "sophistication". The description of the store I was given described it as being a being a more intimate shopping experience, and that the best looks of the season would be featured on a runway of mannequins down the middle of the store.This all makes sense and sounds lovely but I was left with one question: Why Dayton???
 Ann Taylor Concept Store - Trip July 16th
In an attempt to learn more, I attended a special opening of the store. I took a few minutes to speak with one of the store's employees to ask a few questions:

Why A "Special" Store in Dayton?
Believe it or not, Dayton's a big shopping area. At least that's what I heard from the sales associate. My thought was "Wow, so I guess all the wardrobes I've been purchasing to support my weight loss online from Ann Taylor and Ann Taylor Loft finally paid off!"

Ann Taylor Concept Store - Trip July 16th
What IS Special About This Store?
According to the Sales Associate, this store will feature more looks that you can't find in other Ann Taylor stores. It will also feature more of the "Covetables" as she called them.

What's a Covetable?
Jewelry and shoes, of course! Accessories!

Ann Taylor Concept Store - Trip July 16th
My Impressions
Honestly, the store itself didn't seem that innovative, the way the PR person described it in her initial email. There were mannequins down the center, and the off shoots on the sides containing the corresponding pieces. I did like how everything in each area seemed to coordinate. It made shopping in this store very easy. They went for the "boudoir" feel in the dressing room area, with cushy square couches, and three-way mirrors on either end. The staff here was extremely helpful, and interested in making a personal connection. I got the impression that if you develop a relationship with a particular associate you might be able to snag yourself a personal shopper, or at least a great resource.

Ann Taylor Concept Store - Trip July 16th
This dress walked home with me.
A Word Of Caution On Sizing
They size large here. While I'm happy I'm fitting into a size 8 dress now, I don't think Ann Taylor's Size 8 is the same as other size 8s. Vanity sizing is at work.

So What's So Cool About The New Store? Bottom Line
Honestly, not much. The clothing was nice, the layout was nice, but it didn't scream "new" and "innovative" to me. I did have an awesome shopping experience, however. I walked out with quite a hefty bag of additions to my wardrobe. While this is a nice store and you may want to visit, the pieces that caught my eye were ones you could find just as easily on Ann Taylor online. I see the word "Concepts" being attached to this as a bit of a gimmick. Whether this store turns out to be truly different... I think that remains to be seen. I will have to visit again when it isn't Grand Opening weekend and see how I am treated as a customer.

Tip: Make sure to price match check when you shop - had I been a bit quicker on the drop I might have gotten my dress for cheaper.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Quest for My Pretty - Weekly Weight Loss Report

So when I posted my measurements on Sunday I forgot to include my most recent benchmarking photographs. Want to see one? Ok! But just for fun we'll put them next to my first official "before" photos:

Before - August 10th, 2010After - July 3rd, 2011
185 lbs - 20 lbs lostJuly 3, 2011
Note: I had lost about 20 lbs before my first BEFORE photo due to Turbo Jam.

I just can't get over seeing that. On to the weigh in!

Weight: 154.6 lbs (-1.6 lbs)

That's what I'm talking about!!! Thank you Leandro and your Brazil Butt Lift! I think it was the something different I really needed. Switching things up is good! Now if I can just keep it up!

I wanted to let you know that I have created several Facebook Groups that you are welcome to join if you're looking for some support.
  • Styrch's Shakeology Recipe Share - By far my favorite of the groups so far. We're sharing Shakeology recipes and ideas.
  • TurboFire Babes - Group is small but I hope to grow it. If you're starting TurboFire and want to talk to other Turbo chicks this is for you!
  • Bum-Bum Babes - A group to work along with me, and talk about, Brazil Butt Lift.
Also, I hope you noticed the ticker on the side... NEW GOAL: 135 lbs! Think I can do it? I sure am going to try!

Still in effect: Incentives and Shakeology Contest.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Cult Nails - Always Winning

Wow! If ever there was a color I wasn't sure I'd like it was definitely this one:

Cult Nails - Always Winning
Cult Nails - Always Winning

When I first saw a "drop" of this on Maria's blog, it looked gorgeous. The first nail shots, I thought it looked too clear. But now having worn it, I can definitely say "Yes, it is a winner." After all, it's not every day that I get compliments on my polish. And this one got quite a few!

Pea soup with glitter. I seem to be saying "pea soup" a lot lately. Guess it's a trend. It reminded me a bit of China Glaze Zombie Zest in it's base, but it's really not the same at all.

It can be a little uneven because the base is sheer.

Two or three coats over Qtica Nail Growth Stimulator and topped with Seche Vite. I had really good wear with this.

Bottom Line
If you have it, love it. If you can get your hands on it, keep it.

You can purchase Cult Nails from their website.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Quest For My Pretty - Measurements!

Wow, when I went through my old posts trying to find the last time I did measurements, I was sort of shocked that the last recorded date I could find was back in December! I really have been putting this off!

Measurements (in Inches)

Right Arm131412.511.75
Left Arm1413.51212
Right Thigh24242121
Left Thigh25.523.752121

Considering on that December date when I measured myself I was 160.2 lbs and my difference now is only of 4 lbs I'm not surprised to not see a huge difference in those measurements, but I am certain that my body composition changed after TurboFire and ChaLEAN Extreme a second time. My clothing is fitting so much looser, and not just in the butt! (But that Butt measurement was nice to see).

Saturday, July 16, 2011

China Glaze Metro Collection - Fall 2011

Yes, yes, this is press release info. And instead of posting the release verbatim I am going to talk about it because I want to start a discussion, darn it! So here we go!

The Metro Collection
Color names and descriptions are from the Press Release:
  • Skyscraper: A sparkling, glitter blue reminiscent of the sky over the city.
  • CG in the City: Glittering dusty purple, bronze and silver multi-tonal glitter, perfect for a pop of edge from West side to East side.
  • Urban-Night: Exactly what you need for a night on the town – rich purple crème.
  • Traffic Jam: Stop traffic with a breathtaking, raspberry pink crème.
  • City Siren: The perfect deep, red crème to match any outfit. 
  • Loft-y Ambitions: Burgundy shimmer and cocktail hour – nothing better.
  • Brownstone: Burnt terracotta crème mirrors the quaint townhouses of the city.
  • Midtown Magic: Burgundy base with flecks of gold shimmer captures the latest fashion trend.
  • Street Chic: This gorgeous beige crème is the perfect go to shade letting your clothes do the talking.
  • Concrete Catwalk: Steel grey crème is amazing for a chic mani.
  • Westside Warrior: For the trendsetting woman this camo green crème is to die for.
  • Trendsetter: Mustard yellow shimmer translates beautifully from hot dogs to nails.
I LOVE LOVE LOVE Fall colors! Every year, this is the time of year I look forward to the most so when I start getting information like this I sort of go a little nuts. From my understanding there are two collections: "Uptown" and "Downtown" (of course). And as usual I want colors from both of the collections. Don't you wish they'd make it easy and put all the cool ones in one collection? Well, "cool" is subjective, I guess so that doesn't work. How they did it is fine then.

But if I were to create my (fictional) "Midtown" collection of  6 I want they'd be the following:


CG in the City

Midtown Magic

Westside Warrior
And... Urban Night

    Which ones are you looking forward to?

    The Beauty Spotlight Team: It's Mystery Makeup Bag Time!

     The Beauty Spotlight Team has a mystery makeup bag to share with you. Twice a month our team will be featuring one of our member’s current makeup bags. This week the honors go to Marcia from Beauty Info Zone.

    I don't know about you, but when I saw this bag I was intimidated. It's so freaking cute! Surely such an adorable bag has to have adorable items in it! My makeup bag is always a mess and I only take it with me when I travel. Otherwise I end up tossing everything into my purse and it gets all jumbled. Guess I'm going to have to tidy up... after all, I'll be featured one of these weeks!

    Any guesses?

    Find out what's in Marcia's Bag!

    Friday, July 15, 2011

    Sister Post: Blushes You Can't Have: MAC Fab

    Here's the other Barbie Loves MAC Blush...

    MAC Fab

    MAC Blush in Fab

    MAC Blush in Fab
    Swatched Heavily.
    Looks like very rich mud doesn't it? Well you'd be surprised but this blush can actually work on very pale skin. It's very different from it's sister blush (Don't Be Shy). Fab seemed like the oddball of the collection to me, as everything else seemed very "Barbie" and this one was a bit different. But it's more of a berry brown, which can work very well is a contour on just about any skin tone I think (my lovely darker ladies who have this - I'd love to hear what you have to say about this color). Believe it or not, I went through a period where I used this blush more than the pinker Don't Be Shy simply because I could give my cheeks shape and color with one or two strokes. It doesn't take much to make this beauty stand out!

    Blushes You Can't Have On Pink Sith
    Blushes You Can't Have is a series originated on the Pink Sith Blog. Pretty in Dayton participates with the expressed permission of the Pink Sith Blog

    Presidental Award? Say What?!? Cool News From Beachbody!

    Team Beachbody is committed to ending the trend of obesity, and I'm excited to be a part of it! Carl Daikeler, Co-founder, Chairman and  CEO of Beachbody announced a few days ago on his blog (read the post) that Beachbody has joined with  Michelle Obama's Let's Move! initiative.

    My current before and afters (about 50 lbs lost)
    In order to inspire us all to move more, become more active, eat healthy, live a healthy lifestyle, and lose weight (not to mention look hot in our bathing suits), ANYONE who does one of the following things between July 15th and August 17th 2011 will be opted in to receive the Presidential Active Lifestyle Award (PALA):
    In return you will receive a signed Presidential Active Lifestyle Award. (note: I am still trying to learn if this award will be digital or physical but I'm guessing that due to the large number of people participating it will be digital).

    Pretty in Dayton Contest and Perks to Get You To Move!!!
    I want Pretty in Dayton readers to be a part of this! So in order to try to entice you into earning your own award, I'm going to do the following:
    • Perk: For anyone purchasing Shakeology Home Direct (Monthly Autoship) through me, I will send you one of the following: Leandro's Secret Weapon Workout, Chalene's Greatest HIITs workout, or one of Tony Horton's P90X One on One series workouts.
    • Perk: If you order a Beachbody DVD set through me, review it and  I will post your review on my blog or link to your site where you've posted your own review.
    • CONTEST:  For anyone who orders a Beachbody DVD set through me I will put you in a drawing for one bag of Shakeology. Purchase more than one DVD set, I'll put your name in for ever DVD set you purchase. Entries will close on August 17th.
    If you want to become a Beachbody coach under me, I will be as awesome as I can be for you and try to help you reach your goals! Plus, you'll be able to take advantage of any of the Perks and Contest outlined above.

    Come on Pretty in Dayton readers! Let's get moving!

      Thursday, July 14, 2011

      Rue-La-La Final Sale Act 2 - More Awesome Stuff!

      Here's Act 2 for you today! I'm particularly looking at Tart, Cole Haan, and DKNY's bedding!

      As always, you can use my invitation link to join if you need one.

      Chanel Peridot - The "I can't photograph this well" polish

      Honestly, I don't have a great camera and I'm not awesome at photography either, but either way this one was so hard to get a picture, you're not going to like my shot:

      Chanel Peridot

      But I still think it's a pretty polish. Well... as Tyra would say... "Ugly Pretty".


      Drab gold green metallic. Near-foil finish. Reminded me a little of sparkly pea soup.

      Two coats, no problems really.

      With Two coats over Qtica Nail Growth Stimulator and topped with Seche Vite I as chipping the first evening. But my nails are terrible condition due to softball (I think). I could still tell, however, if you're prone to chips this will be a tricky one. Maybe it's a "Sticky Sandwich" polish.

      Bottom Line
      I'm glad I own it, but it's not my favorite Chanel. If you're the type who hates regretting missing out on a limited edition, then go get it. Otherwise, unless you love the color you can pass.

      Wednesday, July 13, 2011

      Quest For My Pretty - Weekly Weight Loss Report

      I had several good things happen this week in terms of advances in my fitness:
      • I started Brazil Butt Lift - OMG! I am going to have so much fun reviewing and sharing this with you!
      • I am officially fitting into size 8s in certain stores - Yes, I know... this means I need to take measurements again!
      • I tried Turbo Jam (my very first workout dvd set in this journey) and realized I am burning about 2/3s as many calories. I have DEFINITELY reached a new fitness level. 
      I'm really excited about a Shakeology Recipe Share group I started over on Facebook.  Anyone can join. My friend Sara is getting hard core with the creativity! I'm loving it. I also started a Brazil Butt Lift group - but that's by invitation only. So let me know if you're going to be doing the workout and I'll add you.

      At one point in time this week I weighed myself and I was down to 152. I doubt that is the case today. But my weight is fluctuating. I guess that's actually a really good thing.

      Let's roll the dice, shall we?

      Weight: 156.2 lbs (-0.6 lbs)

      I want to state that I feel like I am in a place where although I've been plateauing for a while and making small decreases, I am feeling REALLY GOOD!  My mindset has switched and it's becoming less about the number and more about the fitness and shape of my body. That's a really good place to be. You can blame my positive attitude on being able to purchase that size 8 dress!

      Paying it Forward
      All of you who read this blog have been instrumental to encouraging me to lose weight and get more fit. I genuinely want to return the favor. If you are reading this and would like an accountability partner, someone to push you, someone who you can complain to or get advice from while on your fitness journey, please send me a note. You don't have to do this alone. And I would like to be there to help you.

      Awesomeness Abounds At the Rue-la-la Final Sale Act 1

      I don't know why I love Rue-la-la's final sales more than any other flash sale site, but I do. Look what they are offering today:

      As always, you can use my invitation link to join if you need one.

      Tuesday, July 12, 2011

      Reminder: 20% off Shabby Apple Still In Effect!

      I wanted to remind you that Shabby Apple's Summer Sale is still on-going. And yes! I does include accessories like my beautiful caterpillar bracelet!

      Shabby Apple - Caterpillar Bracelet

      Shabby Apple Caterpiller Bracelet - $35 
      Price stated is before sale code.

      Use Code: SUMMER20 
      Sale ends July 31st.

      Pretty in Dayton is a Shabby Apple affiliate.

      Monday, July 11, 2011

      Penhaligon's LP No. 9 for Ladies - Madame Rue Stirred Up Something Nice!

      You may remember a while back, I was asked to be a guest blogger on Penhaligon's blog Adventures in Scent. I discussed out growing Versace Red Jeans, my "Man Catcher" perfume. Now, what I didn't talk about is that Penhaligon's has their own "Man Catcher" perfume, but this one is different. It's LP No. 9 For Women.

      They may not say "Love Potion" directly we all know that's exactly what it stand for. And yes, there is also a LP No. 9 for Men, but I'll discuss that fragrance in a different post. I have samples of both.

      So lets get on with it!

      Image from Penhaligon's Website
      What Penhaligon's Website Says about LP No. 9 for Women
      Head Notes
      Lemon, Geranium, Bergamot, Tarragon and Lavender
      Heart Notes
      Carnation, Rose and Jasmine
      Base Notes
      Cinnamon, Patchouli, Musk, Amber, Cedar and Vanilla
      Created in 1998, LP No. 9 for ladies is potent and addictive brew of sweet floral notes, spices and musk. It opens with a creamy accord of tarragon and lavender sharpened with a twist of lemon. The heart reveals the open sweetness of carnation wrapped in rich sensual base notes of cedar, spice &; vanilla. The final effect is gorgeously soft and romantic, strange and beguiling.
      Perfumer: Christian Provenzano
      Yay! I love it when they tell us the Perfumer!

      Lp No. 9 for Ladies comes in a 100 ml bottle for $120 or you can get a 50 ml bottle for $80.

      My Experience With LP No. 9 for Ladies
      Can a smell make you more attractive by changing your mood and demeanor? I think this one could. I had thought with the "for Ladies" at the end of this title that the scent would be attractive to men, but after wearing it I think it might work a little differently. Let me tell you about it.

      I could smell the lemon in this instantly along with some of the more bitter florals (my guess is the geranium and carnation). The rose and jasmine follow close behind.  The base is, for lack of a better word, frakking awesome!  It's like a wonderful cloud of sexy confidence.

      My initial thought upon applying LP No. 9 for Ladies was that it reminded me of the Victoria's Secrets "Secret Number" line of perfumes. I can't remember which one it was that I owned (this was nearly 10 years ago after all) but the number I chose was a spicy sexy one. LP No. 9 also had a spicy/sexy mix to it but it was more refined, gentler on the nose, and didn't really hit you over the head the way that the much cheaper Victoria's Secret one did. As the description said, it was also creamy. Smelling it makes me want to breath in deeply and close my eyes, just enjoying this mix of scents in a way that the scent I was reminded of never did.

      I didn't notice any particular attraction from men the way I got with my old Man Catcher from Versace, but I noticed that I felt more sexy wearing this. I felt more confident in myself, and that in itself is attractive. You could say that it was a very good "mood creator" scent for me. I behaved a little more flirtatiously toward my husband, I was more receptive to his attempts at "wooing me" over dinner (he's the cave-man "club her over the head and drag her away" sort of guy). So that in itself is a WIN in my book.

      I asked my husband what he thought and he gave it the "well, it doesn't offend my nostrils the way some of the scents you wear tend to do." I took that to mean he was fairly neutral about it. To me that doesn't matter because I liked how wearing this scent made me feel, and that had an effect on him.

      Bottom Line
      It remains to be seen if it is a "man-catcher" for someone, but for me it is definitely something to wear to alter my own mood.

      I will have one of my single girl friends wear it out one of these days and "field test it" so to speak. That would be fun, don't you think?

      Penhaligon's LP No. 9 for Ladies can be purchased on their website.

      The product in this review was provided by Penhaligon's LTD for my consideration. I am not affiliated with Penhaligons LTD and I do not sell their products.

      Saturday, July 9, 2011

      The Beauty Spotlight Team: Week of July 8th

      • A new lipstick from Chanel? Lisamarie from Beauty Crazed knows you are dying to see swatches so here you go already!
      • Beauty Info Zone went to California for shopping and the IMATS show. Find out why their suitcases were overweight on the way back home.
      • Zuzu's Petals at Everyday Beauty had a blast debating the merits of the nude makeup invasion with fellow readers.
      • Over at Lipstick Musings, Shannon's brown eyes turn blue with Lancome's Eye Brightening All-In-One 5 Shadow and Liner Palette #401, Midnight Rush. Will you fall in love, too?
      • Now the UK is finally getting some Summer,London Makeup Girl had a look at the Sue Devitt Beausoleil Summer 2011 collection.
      • This week Jeanie at Makeup Merriment has once again fallen under the spell of the Rouge Bunny Rouge cosmetics line. This time she's enchanted by a gorgeous eye color named Kevin Aucoin's liquid lipstick in Aquarouge to be precise.
      • Paula, from Older Girl Beauty tells us how she refreshed her hair color, and how we can all refresh ourselves this summer, with the help of Natural Instincts.
      • Its time for monthly favorites! Find out what made Pammy Blogs Beauty's list of Star Products for the month of June.
      • Chanel Peridot Le Vernis Nail Colour from the Fall 2011 Illusions d'Ombres de Chanel Collection has Perilously Pale is contemplating buying her first ever "backup".
      • Styrch shows what a dramatic difference weight loss can make in just YOUR FACE on Pretty in Dayton. (People saying she looks like a teenager again).
      • See what Vincent Longo Pearl X eye shadows and a Chameleon have in common over at Prime Beauty!
      • Described at the “new classics” Visionary Beauty has a look at the Sand eye palette from the Bobbi Brown Tortoise Shell Collection.


      Friday, July 8, 2011

      Coveted Item of The Week - Shakeology Tropical

      Oh just watch the darn video! Seriously, since I heard this was announced I have been dreaming about this:

      What a geek am I to post this!!! But as a person who has been drinking Chocolate Shakeology (which I ADORE) nearly every day since last may I have been dying for something new. I was having dreams of Strawberry the other night, because I knew the new flavor is on the horizon. While this may not be Strawberry, it IS something fruity that isn't Greenberry. And I seriously WANT!!!!

      Yes, I am a BeachBody Coach and I do earn a commission if you purchase Shakeology from me but I freaking love the stuff so why wouldn't I post it on my own blog?

      Giveaway Winner! The Winner of the Althea Harper Sittella Scarf is...

      Laura @ Sawan-Heaven!!!

      Laura was lucky number 12 of 42, the number that spit out for me. Laura, you win this:

      Althea Harper Sittella Scarf

      Please send me your address and I can get it mailed to you.

      So this time around, we had the lucky number 42 for the number of entries into this contest (at least from what I can find... and I was checking ALL THE TIME). It's really hard going back and forth between Twitter, my blog,  Althea Haper's Facebook page, my Facebook page and to a spreadsheet but it paid off because I'm super excited for this giveaway!

      Please remember that ANYONE can get their own Sittella Scarf from Althea Harper with a 15% discount through the end of JULY using code: BLOGREADER. These scarves are SO worth it!

      Cult Nails - Captivate!

      To preface this review, I don't usually like jelly polishes and glitters and I tend not to get along. But I will admit this polish won me over:

      Cult Nails - Captivated

      Cult Nails - Captivate

      This polish made me feel like a little kid again, being enchanted by anything sparkly. It also reminded me of being a kid again because it seemed a little like one of those cheaper polishes you might pick up in an accessories store. It turns out that the Polishololic blog found this to be the case - an extremely similar dupe exists called Tiger's Blood at Icing for half the cost. Maria acutally addressed how this happens in the Nail Polish industry in her Blog Post "Does Captivate Have Tiger's Blood In It?". I STRONGLY recommend you read Maria's article as it is absolutely eye opening, if you don't know much about what goes on behind the scenes in making polishes.

      Captivate is a jelly coral with lots of golden glitter particles in it. I don't think they are all the same size, and this actually adds to it's interest.

      That being said, I own no other color even remotely like this. It is unique in my collection. And while wearing it, I could NOT stop looking at it! 

      Two coats maybe somewhat inconsistent. I used two here and you can tell my pinky nail is a lot more sheer than some of the other colors.  This polish was, for me, very goopy when applying and getting even application was a bit difficult.

      With Two coats over Qtica Nail Growth Stimulator and topped with Seche Vite I started to get chips earlier than I have with other polishes I have used from Cult Nails.

      Bottom Line
      Captivate is an aptly named color, but the performance and application weren't as nice as I've come to expect. Get it if you own nothing like it.Regardless of Captivate's imperfections I will be keeping this in my collection.

      It is currently sold out on Cult Nails, so I would suggest checking out your local Icing for Tiger's Blood.

      Thursday, July 7, 2011

      My New Althea Harper Boardwalk Dress!

      I've had a little fascination with Althea Harper's Boardwalk Dress from her Sittella line since I had a dream about it about a year ago that I was wearing it in the rain standing outside of a bar. Strange dream, but I knew I had to have this dress.

      I had one hesitation: the low neckline. I asked Althea and Ashlie about this dress, and discussed my lack of "perky boobs"  and that I needed something where I could wear a bra. They said they'd cut it so it wasn't as low, and make the straps a little thicker to support my... needs. So YES, Althea is willing to work with you!

      What I Love About The Boardwalk Dress
      • It is EXTREMELY comfortable - The material that this is made from
      • The design is forgivable for imperfect bodies - At the very least, it's not gonna hurt you too much.
      • It's like a DKNY Cozy - You can tie it up, clip it back, whatever... and have a whole different dress!
      • It's machine washable - Best news ever, right?
      • No two are exactly alike - Due to the nature of the dye job, your dress isn't going to be the same as anyone else's dress. 

      Pulled together in the back to make it tight.
        After quickly tying up the back (see below)
         What I Don't Like About the Boardwalk Dress

        The skirt is seriously heavy! If I were purchasing it in a store I'd think it was a miss-match between the type of fabric and the design or even a design flaw.  Here's why: The dress is meant to be low cut (Althea intends the v-neck to drop just below the chest) but with the weight of this skirt and the stretchiness of the fabric/straps the v comes down almost to my belly button. No kidding! That's lower than how it looks on the model on her site. I asked to be able to wear a bra with this, and Althea said she'd cut the v higher and make the straps a bit thicker. I'm glad she did because I'd be a little nervous to try the dress sans-modifications. In the end, I have to tie the straps up to make sure this dress doesn't go too low.

        Also can cling to your bra (as you can see from my pictures). So, you might want to try something else underneath. I may try a cami next time.

        Regardless of it's flaws, it's still so comfortable I love wearing it! 

        If you don't mind fighting a bit with your dress to make it perfect, then it's SO COMFORTABLE and perfect for summer. But you might want to ask Althea to make the straps shorter or thicker if you're worried about the low neckline.

        The Sittella Boardwalk Dress is purchasable from for $125. As a Pretty in Dayton Reader you can get 15% off Sittella clothing using code BLOGREADER through July 31.

        Incidentally, I plan on picking up either the Mar Vista Dress or the Waves Mini dress before this code expires!

        Images provided by Kara Lock Van Roekel.

        Wednesday, July 6, 2011

        Then and Now: May 21, 2010 vs. May 16, 2011

        One of the things I get told by many of you who've been watching me go through my fitness transformation and my weight loss is that when you go through my old faces of the day, you really see the change, and sometimes it's dramatic. So I thought I might now and then post "Then and Now" pictures, both to remind me of everything I've done and to inspire those of you who may be on your own fitness journey.

        This "Then and Now" coincidentally are both May visits to the Melting Pot in Dayton. One was in 2010, the other 2011.


        Posted on Friday, May 21, 2010


        Posted on May 16, 2011

        If I can do it, you can do it!

        Want to know how I did it? Watch the video I posted a few days ago!

        Quest For My Pretty - Weekly Weight Loss Report

        I had a really rough week. Three big things happened. One, the 4th of July holiday, when you know you'll be eating and having fun and if you're not then people thing something is wrong with you. Two, it was my wonderful mom's 65th birthday - which I got to celebrate with her at a very nice restaurant in Ann Arbor. Three, my husband's grandfather passed away which meant funeral and food that wasn't so great to eat. Even though all of these things came at me, I did get to get one workout in while traveling. I also discovered I am HELPLESS against the call of my mom's Monster Cookies (oatmeal, chocolate chips, and peanut butter), and her Graham Cracker Pie.

        So yes, I expect this weigh in will not go in the direction I would like it to. I have no one to blame but myself.

        Weight: 156.8 (-0.6 lbs)

        I'll take it!!! That's actually a surprise (a very welcome one).

        One positive thing to come: I FINALLY ordered a food dehydrator. It should be arriving this week. I hope to start making my own munchables over the weekend. With any luck I'll find ways of making some of my favorite snacks in a more healthy manner. Dehydrated green beans with less salt and not "fried" here I come!

        P.S. In case you missed it, I ordered Brazil Butt Lift for my next workout. Please consider working out with me. I will create a special Facebook group for us to share our Bum Bum stories with each other!

        Tuesday, July 5, 2011

        Trying out Penhaligon's Malabah is a Drool Worthy Experience

        You have heard me say it a million times: I can't stand "Rose" scented stuff, right? Well, browsing Penhaligon's site I was put of by Malabah because the heart notes included "Rose". I usually start sneezing the second I put something rose on. But I requested a sample from my dear friends over at Penhaligon's LTD because I was curious what a perfume that had such savory notes like "Earl Grey" and "Cilantro" might actually smell like. I mean really, who puts that in perfume? Well I'm so glad Penhaligon's did!

        Penhaligon's Malabah (from their Website)
        What Penhaligon's Website Says about Malabah

        Head Notes
        Lemon, Earl Grey Tea and Cilantro

        Heart Notes
        Ginger, Nutmeg, Cardamom, Rose and Orris

        Base Notes
        Sweet Amber, Sandalwood and Musk

        Created in 2003, Malabah was inspired by an imaginary journey along the East Indian spice route. The opening notes of citrus, green coriander and smoky earl grey tea give way to a heart of sublime rose, ginger and aromatic spices. The soft base introduces orris, sweet musks and amber to create a luscious and sensual experience.
        Malabah comes in a 100 ml bottle for $135 or you can get a 50 ml bottle for $95. It also comes in a Solid Fragrance, Bath Oil, Bath and Shower Gel, Hand Cream and a Candle. In other words, to create so many corresponding product's it's probably pretty popular.

        My Experience With Malabah
        Upon application I immediately was able to pick up Lemon scent and something flowery, but not overly "Rose". The Ginger presence is strong in the beginning, giving this a fresh and exotic smell. The savory notes were there, but not in a grassy way. They were much more sweet (I think tempered by the jasmine and rose). As it dried down the Jasmine scent became more prominent, mingled with a slight Rose. After about an hour or two's worth of wear the Amber, Musk and Sandlewood start to take over becoming something much more comfortable (to me). I wear perfumes with those notes quite often. I found wearing this made me feel slightly more sensual than some of the other perfumes I wear, and pretty (even though it was laundry day).

        By the way, this perfume is "husband approved". I made Mr. Styrch take a whiff of it and he did NOT wrinkle up his nose, as he does quite often and said "That's very subtle! I like it!" That's high praise from my most harsh critic when it comes to smell.

        Bottom Line
        Whether you're pampering yourself or a friend, Malabah is a great scent. It's not overly flowery, and I think it could appeal to a very wide audience. It is undeniably feminine, but not overly sexy too.

        And by the way, I think it just replaced Lily & Spice as my next perfume to order from Penhaligon's.

        Penhaligon's Malabah can be purchased on their website.

        The product in this review was provided by Penhaligon's LTD for my consideration. I am not affiliated with Penhaligons LTD and I do not sell their products.