beauty, exercise, Fashion, food, hair, makeup, skincare, weight

in which we go to the Real Simple Lifestylers press preview for #RSBEAUTYBALANCE at the Andaz Hotel

Completely unexpected email invite of the year on deck!

It came quietly, with little fanfare. It was simple (Real Simple, lol!) and minimalist in design. It blew my whole head apart for the rest of the day and left me all nervous until the day came for me to attend. Someone actually invited me to a magazine event. This was like that time that someone gave me free sneakers- a whole next level situation.

Let’s all jump up and down squealing, ok?

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Real Simple magazine’s site Real Simple Lifestylers  decided to have a pop-up at the Andaz Hotel on 41st Street and I was selected to attend the press-preview the day before. Selected guests were going to feel all the feels so we could tell those of you who missed it. I went to an afternoon of pampering for YOU, ok? Yes.

And I took lots of photos…

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When I registered for the event, I was sent straight to a link to start signing up for beauty services. I figured I should do everything so that I could give a fair assessment of the experience and the products used, not to mention how I felt about it all. This is a photo of the Aveda Hairstyling Studio, my first stop. rsbb2

I had actually decided to cut off about two inches of hair the day before, feeling that I had too many lengths going on uptop. I made sure to arrive with clean hair so that I could get the best results from my 30 minute appointment. Luckily for me, I got celebrity hair stylist Tippi Shorter (she has actually done Jennifer Hudson’s hair!!! ) and we had a blast working together.

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Tippi asked me how I normally liked to wear my hair, and when I explained that I normally plait and then let it free to curl riotously, she knew exactly what to do. She parted my hair and did two strand twists after working in some Aveda phomollient styling foam, then applied heat via a 5-minute blow dry. After picking out the twists (she left one as an accent on the side) Tippi rubbed in Aveda dry remedy daily moisturizing oil, which left my hair soft and shiny. Even if your hair is natural, that doesn’t mean no maintenance. Products like these leave your strands moisturized and fragrant, always a good thing.

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After leaving Tippi’s chair, I headed right over to the Aveda Chakra Balance station, where I had my cards read, and then was misted with the Chakra 3 balancing body mist and given a healing shoulder massage. This treatment catered to inviting a balance in power, motivation, intention and desire in my life.

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Loving these gorgeous flower arrangements sprinkled throughout the light-filled treatment rooms…notto mention the copies of Real Simple magazine all over the place!

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They weren’t ready for me at my next appointment, so I hung out in the lounge, which was absolutely gorgeous. Ceramic cups for tea, lots of tea bags and different sweeteners and lemon wedges awaited. There wasn’t any food, but there were these elegantly mismatched knives, so hope was alive that something good was coming later.

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I started getting bored so I just wandered around taking photos with my Samsung S5 Active cameraphone until the were ready for me…   rsbb6a

Once they had an opening I headed over to the Laura Geller Mini-Makeover salon, where I chose to get a refresh on my lipstick.

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After that it was time to motorvate to my next appointment, A Pure Barre exercise class. I’ve been working on my weight loss resolution, but I exercise on my own. I was really nervous about taking a class, but also excited about learning new toning and fat burning tricks.

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Loving this view from the second floor of the Andaz Hotel. yes- that’s the library where Big stood Carrie up.

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I was super tired after getting up at 5am to bake cookies and deliver samples before the event, but with my new Aveda hairstyle, my chakras balanced, and my lips touched up by the Laura Geller team- I was ready to jump in there and do some working out. At least until I saw the pile of sweaty towels and the stuff on the yoga mats. Hello? I thought this was a photo op workout?

rsbb91 Um- not so much. Our instructor, Mish led us into a 45 minute whirl of moves that left me limp, sweaty, and profoundly grateful that I had started working out and walking before this class. And I STILL Had to rest. We used everything on the mat, worked every part of the body, and I think I would do the Pure Barre  again. I just need a second to rest and think about it.

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I made a beeline back to the refreshment lounge and found all this. Hope rewarded!!! I put together some crusty bread slices with olive tapenade, goat cheese, and roasted peppers, loaded up on brie and crunchy pita slices then remembered something very very important:

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Wine and Ghirardelli chocolate tasting on fleek!!!!  yes, I took a snack to sustain me on my long walk from the lounge to the kitchen. But this pic is so cool- port wine paired with Sea Salt Soiree was divine.

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I so want to try this arrangement under glass. Simple and gorgeous oh hey, copies of Real Simple mag!

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Once I got myself settled I had all this. Oh, I forgot to mention the SUJA juices that they handed us after the Pure Barre class. I at my self down, grabbed a copy of Real Simple and loafed for a few minutes- until I remembered that I had a skincare appointment with RoC scheduled. I drank all the wine before I got up and ran down the hall, though. I’m not completely insane.

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I ran into the RoC Skincare Lab and was invited to lay down on a white leather divan, as I have always dreamed of doing, and enjoy myself. My skin was cleansed with RoC Daily Resurfacing Discs (a whole tub for $9.99! #bargain!) then she did a lot of stuff that I enjoyed throughly, like massaging my face and putting Deep Wrinkle serum on it. I can’t do eye cream for any reason, it gives me headaches- but RoC does have a good one.

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I grabbed some more Ghiradelli chocoloate squares and another SUJA juice on my way out, said my thank yous, then ran across the street to hang out in front of the library and poke through my goodie bag.

Sit down, this is epic goodie bag stuffing.

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Yes. This happened. Yogi Tea (gone, drank ’em up), Ghirardelli dark chocolate, the Suja Juice Solution Book, The Real Simple Guide To Life, cute You Are Loved stickers from Pink Olive, Aveda hand lotion, thickening tonic styling spray, and samples of their  smooth infusion straightening cream (get your free samples here). The also threw in a fun graph paper notepad, Laura Geller tropical blush-n-brighten compact, full-sized bottle of RoC Skincare Deep Wrinkle Serum (yaaaaassss!!!!), Real Simple 15th Anniversary issue, Pure Barre high-waisted 3-in-1 Gemini capris (invaluable, can’t stop wearing them), and a pack of Aloha Daily Good Greens superfood powders (i already used two of them making smoothies; get 20% off of our using the code  SAMAKOU)

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I picked up Neutrogena naturals makeup remover wipes and this SUJA green juice after my Pure Barre class. I’ve already started cooking with the Ghirardelli Twilight Delight chocolate– I made an easy mole sauce by adding chopped chocolate and crushed red pepper flakes to a pot of roasting chicken breast (inspired by this Real Simple recipe)

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Oh my! A ceramic bee hive with an Aspen Bay bamboo lotus scented candle inside #love. Speaking of love? Check out this heart shaped Konjac cleansing sponge from One Love Organics! I’m really looking forward to playing with it, followed by a moisturizing dose of RoC Skincare Deep Wrinkle serum.

*GIVEAWAY: If you’re interested, I’m giving away the Real Simple Beaute with a copy of the 15th Anniversary issue of Real Simple Magazine and a copy of The Real Simple Guide to Life (lots of good advice for people just starting out on their own). email me at sassyethnicbohemian@gmail.comwith one great thing that reading Real Simple has done for you.

Next up: BooHoo Man aw2015 press preview

xoxo, Faith/Sassy Ethnic Bohemian

beauty, Fashion, MBFW, NYFW, skincare

NYFW recap: The Official Haul of the aw2015 season shows

So, yeah. Fashion Week happened, and I went some places and got some stuff handed to me free of charge. Did I say no? Um.

Let’s move on.

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On Day 6, when I should have been slogging to 3 shows, I crashed and went through my stuff.  I didn’t go out that much, but I think I did ok. I mean, nobody’s handing out free magazines and stuff at the supermarket, right? So in that light…BONANAZA!!!

Clothing and clothing related items:

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I believe that we have discussed the Tide Fashion Closet with stylist Jennifer Eve on hand to give out clothing mantenance advice? I managed to get one bag of Tide pods (with Febreze!) for every day that I was supposed to be at Lincoln Center. Why? Because chicks need detergent like they need egg sandwiches. I got this tshirt from Planet Zero Motorsports at the NOLCHA Fashion Lounge and this insane brightly patterned Winnie scarf from the incredible Desigual aw2015 show.

Beauty products:

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I got a totebag from My Indie Hair at the Nolcha Fashion Lounge. They are all about social media, down to putting their handles on the inside rim of the bag. They were giving out hairspray, but that just gunks up my hair, so I traded that for their Polish #mixitsoft. I got some Bumble & bumble samples from Stylinity at TechStyle Lounge along with a new SK-II Facial Treatment Mask and a tiny bottle of Facial Treatment Essence. Pandora was giving away fashion emergency kits and free photos at Lincoln Center.

Tech stuff:

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I got this cotton totebag (yes, another one… so original, right?) at TechStyle Lounge and filled it with new fun tech goodies. Like this most righteous UME Drive Millenium bracelet ($27.99) that I got straight from CEO Clem Harrigan’s pocket. What’s an UME Drive? It’s 8gig of wearable storage- waterproof and everything. No excuse for not having your presentation when you’re wearing it, right?

I also got a self help book called The Love List on a USB stick/keychain and the Stylinity Selfie Stage ($19.99) which is a clear plastic cradle for your smartphone with both adhesive and a suction cup on the back. Basically? Full length selfies just got so much easier.

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Bottles of Smartwater were all they had for free refreshment at Lincoln Center this (the last) season.   No more Diet Coke or Illy Coffee Drinks. No delicious Lifeway Kefir. Just water. I got four and am saving them for no real reason.

Got this All Beauty Water cucumber and aloe drink sweetened by Stevia at the NOLCHA Fashion Lounge. Definitely tasty. The Koa Olakino drink is so confusing that I just don’t really want to drink it. It’s supposed to be juice- but they tool all the color and sugar out so it tastes like water. I’ve had relationships like this, and it’s weird. Why would you make 12 fruits and vegetables taste like water?

SexyPop popcorn and Skinnygirl Sparklers from TechStyle Lounge– basically fake diet snack food. You can make popcorn fresh and customize it to your taste with far fewer additives and calories. The Skinnygirl Sparklers are basically soda and I admit that I guzzled them all because I never drink soda. I felt really bad afterwards because I could have used real fruit juice and a sparkling water to create my own low cal beverage and avoid the 10 calorie per bottle tariff I paid.

Reading material:

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They give away free copies of T Magazine, The Daily Front Row and WWD at NYFW. So I try to load up. For rainy days and working in my daybook and getting ideas, they definitely come in handy.

Next up: The Art Institutes Student Showcase review

xoxo, Faith/Sassy Ethnic Bohemian