Saturday, December 31, 2011

Year in Review: What I remember most of 2011

This was the year I broke out of my usual makeup sources (e.g. MAC) and explored other bands I wasn't familiar with personally. I had gotten tired of seeing the same colors get recycled by main stream brands along with higher price tags than when they offered them originally. Also, I found when you purchase from an indi brand it can be a lot more personal and gratifying on a different level, as opposed to always going for what is main stream. I love helping people get a little boost because I featured something of theirs on this little blog of mine.That makes me happy!

I also made it a point to get out and into Dayton proper a bit more.  I enjoyed urban neighborhoods, popup shops, new places to eat, and especially new friends. This is something I want to continue to do next year.

But for now, let's get on with...

2011: What I will remember... (in random order)

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Quest For My Pretty - Weekly Weightloss Report

Wow! Christmas... Cookies! That's what Christmas was about. My mother makes the most awesome cookies and I was happy to eat them. But I did get some exercise in so I hope the damage is minimal...

Weight: 160.2 lbs (-0.2lbs)

Hey! I maintained! That's great news!

I have a new tool for weight loss which is sort of awesome. My parents purchased a BodyBugg for me for Christmas. It's awesome! I've been wearing it as much as I possibly can since I got it charged up. I discovered that I burn between 700 and 800 calories while sleeping. SLEEPING! But what this information can do is give me more clear idea on what I should be eating, not what anyone else thinks I should be eating in terms of calorie allotment. I've been pretty sure that my intake has been off for a while. I hope the BodyBugg will keep me on track and give me new insight into how my body is actually burning it's fuel.

In other news, my HUSBAND asked me when I was doing another Shakeology Cleanse. I can't believe he wants to do this with me, but I'm excited that he does! I was thinking mid January. Is anyone interested in joining us?

Penhaligon's Ltd - Up to 50% off selected items!

Just letting you know Penhaligon's is having a big sale (as in BIG DISCOUNT) on their site. Not everything is on sale, and there are differences between what's on sale in the US and what's on sale in the UK. I thought I would point some things out:

If you are in the US...
  • Lilly & Spice Eau de Perfume - both sizes are on sale. I picked up the larger size for $33.75 (normally $135)
  • Artemisia Candle - I didn't buy this but I adore the scent.
If you are in the UK...
  • Anthology Fragrance Collection - £40.60, was £58.
  • Lp #9 for Ladies - You have no idea how envious I am! £29, was £58. I would have snatched this up super fast if it was on sale in the US.  
So what are you waiting for? Go shop!

Monday, December 26, 2011

Cuticle and Peeling Nails Advice from Ms. Lisa of the Beaute Box

Have YOU signed "The Box" yet? I actually haven't, but I wish I had asked if I could!
The Beaute Box

The Beaute Box The Beaute Box, as you know, is my favorite place in Dayton to go get my nails done. I don't do it often - I have far too many polishes at home. But when I get a craving for a Shellac on the Rocks or a Minx-tini pedicure, I head over to Ms. Lisa.

In Lisa's new location, which I wanted to mention, she has ample space. Not only is she doing nails, but you can have parties come in. If you want the services of an esthetician, she has one - and she'll double team you with a Shellac manicure while you're getting your lashes done (see picture of some patron, not me).

However, when I go see Lisa, she often has advice for me on how to care for my nails. I have two main problems right now: Raggedy Cuticles and Splitting Nails. Let me impart to you Lisa's advice on how to care for these two conditions.

The Beaute Box
Raggedy Cuticles Home Care
  • Solar Oil, Solar Oil, Solar Oil! - Lisa trusts CND as a company implicitly. And she says their Solar Oil is the best. Some Oils have fragrance or other additives that may cause your cuticles to feel dry. So she suggests investing in Solar Oil. But either way, a cuticle oil for Lisa is a MUST!
  • The Post-Shower Routine - After you are done showering every night, take your towel while your hands are still damp. Use the towel friction to push back your delicate cuticles. Lisa says that this is both gentle enough of your tender cuticles and effective.
  • Cuticle Oil at Night, Every Night - I'm a fan of lotions, and I play on my iPhone before bed when I don't have a book, but Lisa wants me to get this into my routine. I'm going to try!
  • Cuticle Nipper, not a Shaver! - You know those little implements that nip at cuticles? This is Lisa's favorite. I loved the little Shavers,but what I've come to realize is that they are not good enough. They create bigger problems later on. In this case, the quick solution is indeed not the best.
The Beaute Box
Peeling Nails Home Care
Really, we all know most of the things to do here (keep your nails polished, wear gloves when washing dishes, hydrate, etc) but Lisa had additional information on buffing out the peelies once you have them. Quite simply put: Buff toward the "good" part of the nail. In my case, I tend to peel from the ends of my nails. So I should peel from the tip, toward the base where the cuticle is. This will remove the peel, but keep the good part of the nail intact and ready to grow healthy. Side to side buffing will not help - you're buffing the peel away but not down to the good part of the nail. I found this most curious.

For the moment my nails are Shellac-ed with Asphalt in order to keep them protected while they grow out. They are down to the quick, and that's not very comfortable. But with Lisa's suggestions and a little luck I hope to get my nails back to their functional length soon.
The Beaute Box

Incidentally, Ms. Lisa is looking for more vintage furniture. If you know some at a good price, the Beaute Box might be interested.

To make an appointment at The Beaute Box, try their facebook page.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

My Husband's Holiday Party - What I wore...


Christmas Party Look

I've never felt more like a sparkler in my life! However I quite liked my makeup and my hair...

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Wishing you a Merry Christmas with my Christmas Mani

CND Shellac Asphalt with China Glaze Snow Globe

I'm not great with holidays around my house. Sometimes I make an attempt. Sometimes not. Being married to an ex-Catholic Athiest will do that to you. But I thought I could at least share a bit of cheer with my manicure.

That's CND Shellac in Asphalt topped with China Glaze Snow Globe.

I'll say this about Snow Globe - if you like Fairy Dust but ever wanted it to be bigger and better in the glitter department, this polish is for you! As was the trend in 2011, there are glitter particles of many shapes and sizes, not to mention colors. It's worth picking up if you like to top your traditional colors with something more eye catching.

Now I'm off to my mother's house, in which Christmas will be in FULL FORCE! She loves to decorate.

Merry Christmas!

The Beauty Spotlight Team - Week of December 24th

After all the running around, shopping, cooking, and headaches the holidays are actually here. The Beauty Spotlight Team wishes you a happy and very healthy Christmas, Chanukah and New Year. May 2012 be a beautiful year in all ways.

Friday, December 23, 2011

Hausfeld's is Dead (not entirely), Long Live MavRes!

If you hang out South of Dayton (like me) you've heard of Hausfelds Salon and Spa. Hausfelds officially closed it's doors Saturday, December 10th. I heard about the closing before many of the employees, on Friday December 9th. I was a party at a friend's house, someone told me about the closing, and I was immediately on my phone emailing my stylist Genny, FREAKING OUT that I would lose her, Kim, Ariella and everyone else I'd grown to trust. She calmly responded saying that she'd call me. When she was finally able to say something she gave me a call and said "I am opening my own salon."

That sound you hear is my jaw simultaneously dropping along with a cheer because I'm so happy for Genny!

Thursday, December 22, 2011

How awesome can you get? David Esrati's Spicy Peanut Rolls

I was just introduced to this wonderful little lunch by my friend David Esrati. Let me tell you - they are fantastic!

And if you wanted to make them lower cal, I'd suggest less peanut butter or substitute PB2.

Check out David's blog

Guest Review: Chian Glaze Brownstone, Urban Night and Westside Warrior from the Fall 2011 Metro Collection

I'm swimming in polishes right now and I haven't been applying as many on a regular basis. So I asked my friend Kara to do some swatching and review for me, and a chance to play with some of the colors. Personally, with her olive-toned skin I thought these colors look fantastic on her. But lets find out what she has to say...

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Quest for My Pretty - Weekly Weight Loss Report

Honestly, I know I'll be lucky to get a "maintenance" report this week. I've been into the wine a bit.

Weight: 160.4 lbs (+ 3 lbs)
Oh hello my nemesis number! We have to control you! I acknowlege your existence, now we go to WAR!!!!

Ok, now, I know part of this is water and part of it is eating/drinking habits.

Stuff to be proud of:
  • I still went in and taught Turbo Kick on Tuesday even though I was off on vacation.
  • I'm putting plans in place for January.
This time of year is just hard - especially THIS year. Least year I was "good". No, I was GREAT. I owe that mostly to the self-promised Althea Harper dress goal. This year I'm enjoying the holidays, and that means food and drink.

So tell me... how are you managing the holidays? Is there anything I should try? I want to know what your tips are.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Hey #Dayton! Check this out!

It's the Ohio Classic III hosted by Pretty in Dayton love Althea Harper. It's also co-hosted by Pretty in Dayton friend Clash Consignment. So come on down to Therapy Cafe next Tuesday December 27th at 6 pm and lets have so fun!.

I'm going to be there, are you?

Get details on how to get tickets from the Ohio Classic III Facebook page.

Face of the Night Using Illamasqua Liquid Metal Eyeshadow in Surge

I've never been so excited by a product and then so incredibly let down. It makes me really sad to show this...

Monday, December 19, 2011

Cult Nails Power Thief - If you don't have this you need it!

Cult Nails Power Thief

Once again my picture fails to do this polish justice. When I put Power Thief on, I told my friend Kara that I felt that Cult Nails had "Out Chanel-ed Chanel".  I look to Chanel to do one of three things: put an interesting spin on the trendy color of the moment, set the trendy color of the moment, make conservative shades fun to wear.  I feel like Power Thief did that by turning up subtle shimmer just one notch above Chanel subtle shimmer (so you can actually see it) and sticking it in an otherwise peculiar but conservative shade. The result was total awesomeness.

Mocha brown with multicolor shimmer. The shimmer doesn't show in my picture very well, but trust me - it's there. It's totally chic!

Two coats, no problems.

I got my usual chipping in a day or two, but I did not want to take this off! It was such a fun color.

Bottom Line
Totally worth the splurge. The definite winner for me from the Super Powers collection!

You can get Cult Nails polishes from their website.

OMG! I sewed a skirt! - A Class with Tracy McElfresh

Sewing Class with Tracy

Sewing Class with Tracy I've had a sewing machine since a friend of mine introduced me to quilting during graduate school. But I haven't actually used it to make much of anything other than quilts (and those only rarely). During high school I played with my mother's old sewing machine, trying to make dresses I saw Alicia Silverstone wearing in Aerosmith videos and failed miserably. I haven't really tried since then because, quite honestly, I'm terrible at picking out fabric to go with a pattern. Just terrible! But when Dayton designer Tracy McElfresh announced she was having an A-line Elastic Waistband Skirt class at Grass Roots (Facebook Page), I pounced on it and reserved my spot.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Penhaligon's Ltd offering 20% off online orders through Dec. 18th!

Now's your chance to pick up that special scent! There are codes, so here are the details...

For US and Canada Residents:
  • Code: 60665
For UK and the Rest of the World:
  • Code: 60666
  • Key: December
The offer ends at midnight on December 18th. Don't ask me which Midnight, the email didn't say.
Visit Penhaligon's Online Store to take advantage of this discount!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Quest For My Pretty - Weekly Weight Loss Report

I am officially going back to basics! Monday I began logging my food in Lose It again. I also started to think about what got me off the couch originally - the short but effective cardio workout. For me, back then, it was Turbo Jam 20 Minute Video. This time that video for me will be the Turbo Fire Fire 30 video or the HIIT 15, depending on what I can do (since I should not do HIITs on back to back days).

I plan to do Turbo Fire Stretch 40 on Sundays as well - it always felt right ending the week that way. This past Sunday I reacquainted myself with that workout and found it to be quite challenging again. I pushed my muscles as far as they would go, and was sore the next day. That has not happened in a long time. It felt good!

Weight: 157.4 lbs (-1.6)

I am so happy with that you have no idea. With as much damage as I have done in the past two months, I can't expect to bounce back to my lower weight quickly. So it's one day at a time now. I'll get through the holidays!

In other news, I burned 720 calories teaching Turbo Kick yesterday. It was fun! Take a look at my lovely class:

Turbo Kick 2011

Yeah, you can't see us very well. But I'm pretty sure you can pick me out!  I love them all! I will do my best to keep improving for them!

Sunday, December 11, 2011

The Beauty Spotlight Team - Week of December 10th

The holiday season is upon us. Is your shopping done yet? Take a break, sit by the fire grab a cup of coffee or cocoa and gather some great gift ideas from your favorite beauty bloggers!


Don't forget about the auction to benefit Doctors Without Borders. Participants have donated a treasure trove of the best lotions, potions, products, and gadgets. Donated items range from the hottest items from this year’s holiday collections to hard-to-find exclusives and limited edition cult favorites. When the auction ends, winning bidders make their donations directly to Doctors Without Borders, through the site’s secure giving page.

Hurry, the auction ends Monday, December 12th.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Just a few videos....

About the Charity Auction!

If you haven't checked out, get on it! Seriously! It benefits Doctors Without Borders. Right now the Pretty in Dayton lot is STILL under value by a lot! And other items are too.

In case my lot isn't what you're looking for, check out these videos by other contributors. They may entice you:

In case you missed my first post on the subject... Here it is!

Quest for My Pretty - Weekly Weight Loss Report

Yes, the November Experiment of not logging my food and trying to exercise regularly without a schedule failed:

Weight: 159. lbs (+1.8 lbs)

I can not allow this to continue. So first order of priority is to start tracking my food again. I'll go back to faithfully using Lose It. Exercise will sort itself out, but the food is going to be the hardest to wrangle again. I've been eating like Insanity, but without doing Insanity. It's like being an athlete in high school and then going to college. I'm eating to support a metabolism I no longer support with my activity.


Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Exploring Dayton: A Visit to Preen Apothacary

My good friend Teresa has been trying to get me into Preen Apothecary for a very long time. The stars finally aligned this past weekend and we attended a Skin, An Apothecary event after a late afternoon lunch. To say the least, I was pleasantly surprised.

Preen - 2011Preen is located on state road 48 in Oakwood, Ohio. It's tucked away on the east side of 48 in an area of little shops. I had been buy it many times, but never had I ventured into the store. Because of the Skin event we were greeted with a glass of champagne and an assortment of appetizers that was to die for. But these appetizers did not detract in the slightest from the awesome array of cosmetics and pampering products that Preen has to offer.

Decked along the walls of Preen I saw displays of Tocca perfumes, Bond No. 9 perfumes, Jack Black, Skin products (of course), Clarisonic, Nars cosmetics and skincare, Kevyn Aucoin, Lipstick Queen, and Hourglass cosmetics. And that's only what I can remember off the top of my head. Believe me, that's not even half of what they offer. Along the center island there was also a wide variety of jewelry and other high priced accessories (I would have caved if the glittery head bands in the center were half the price). In short, the selection at Preen was like going through Sephora with a fine tooth comb, and then adding some glitter to the contents that made the cut. Love!

The icing on the cake of course was that I got a chance to SMELL more of Skin, An Apothecary's collection of body whip scents. I did tell you I would notify you if I found one I adored. Seriously, if you want to smell like you should be licked from head to toe, then get the Skin Body Whip in Ginger Snap. I also got a Sugar Scrub in Ginger Snap as a result of my purchase (the promotion that was going on included it). It's heavenly! The smell is exactly like a sugary ginger cookie - making me feel totally decadent. It's perfect for the season.

I also highly approve of the following Skin Scents: Crema, Lavender and Mint, Mango, and Vanilla Plum. I suspect as seasons change, my tastes will as well. But for now Ginger Snap trumps all of these lovely scents.

All in all I had a lovely visit to Preen. I can't wait to return - when I have a little more cash to play with. That Bond No. 9 perfume in Chinatown caught my attention, as did several of the Tocca scents.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Exploring Dayton: I found a little "Peace on 5th"

Peace on 5th - 2011

Having trouble finding Peace on Earth this holiday season? Well, you can actually at Peace on 5th in Dayton, Ohio. Peace on 5th is "pop up store," meaning that it will be around for a limited time. As I understand it these pop up stores give  Dayton a chance to fill their empty spaces with fun and exciting new shops while giving would be store owners a chance to try out their store concept with an actual store front.You can read more about it at Activated Spaces. Peace on 5th is interesting in that it actually benefits a charity the Dayton Peace Museum, something which I have only recently heard about.

When I stepped in and smelled the wonderful scent of pumpkin spices. In the spirit of the holidays and peace, I picked up a pair of the candles making the lovely scent for my neighbors next door. And, since my husband and I have a thing for puzzles, I picked up a gorgeous wooden puzzle set for us. My friend Teresa was enchanted by some mugs that said "Change your thinking, change the world" while our friend Katy was purchasing glittery ornaments off of a Christmas tree in the back. 

Peace on 5th - 2011
Everything in this store had a story. If you ask the store operators they can tell it to you. As we were tasting olive oil we were told the history of the grove in which the olive trees from which the oil came were grown - a history that dated all the way back to Ancient Rome.  Items like these make easy gifts to purchase because you know some of the money is going to a good cause, and you're getting something special. It's the type of store I miss seeing, the type of store I left behind when I moved here from Ann Arbor, Michigan. I hope that Peace on 5th's stay in downtown Dayton extends beyond it's January 12 (?) expiry date. I would love to see this shop thrive. If you are in town, I urge you to check it out:

Peace on 5th
519 E. Fifth St.

All of the items in Peace on 5th are fair trade, slave-free, and eco-friendly. In the event that you do not get down to the store in time to catch it in the 5th street location, I am assured that there is a store in the Peace Museum proper.

Now I need to go visit this museum... and shop there as well.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Subscription Lingerie? What do YOU think of Adore Me's Concept?

You know I've been a huge fan of subscription based accessory sites. I've even ventured into subscription based shoe club memberships. Well I was contacted recently about ANOTHER subscription based service. But rather than decorating you for your day out on the town, this one is intent on decorating you for your bedroom.

Read more about Adore Me after the jump!

They Beauty Spotlight Team - Mystery Makeup Bag courtesy of ZuZu Petals

No matter what, this has to be one the cutest makeup bags I've ever seen. It's adorable! What do you think is inside Zuzu Petal's Makeup bag? Personally, going to marvel at the cuteness for a bit before clicking over to her site.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

December: My Send the Trend and JewelMint Accessory Picks

I love waiting my inbox on the first day of every month. Usually I wake up, go to work (if it's not the weekend) and then see that I have "My Showroom Ready" in the case of Jewelmint, or a notice from Send The Trend that there are new selections. Sometimes I like to show them here, like I will today.

In terms of Accessories for December, I think of three things:
  • Glittery - the holiday season is upon us and chances are I'll want to look like a glowy sparkler at least once.
  • Warm and Cozy - the approaching Solstice doesn't mean "warmth" to me, but the signifier that very cold days are approaching and I had better be ready. Ned Stark said it best: "Winter is coming!" Sometimes it's already here, though Dayton is a lot easier when it comes to snow than Michigan.
  • Cheap - As in "I'm cheap". I'm looking for the most bang for my buck because I've been buying for friends and family. Or I've splurged recently on myself and my husband during Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Either way, I'm out of cash. 
The last item means that I'm going to be very picky when it comes to what I pick up in December. I'll show you what I liked after the jump...