Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Body Mist Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 100+. The name may be a mouthful, but this stuff works. Of course, most people can probably dial down the SPF level a bit, but I like to be over prepared for the sun's searing rays.
As I was typing the headline to this post, I added an extra s to desert and got really excited about the possibilities of a dessert island. Chocolate volcanoes! Crushed graham cracker sand! Key lime pie palm fronds!
But, I digress...this is Desert Island Week. Still exciting, though not as delicious.
Choosing my product was a no-brainer for me. Fair-skinned with red hair, I would burn to a crisp without sunscreen. Even a trip in my car with the window down can cause my skin to turn red. Plus, there's the risk of skin cancer.
Like Deal Diva Katie, I wondered if by choosing sunscreen, I was taking this week's theme too literally. But, I don't use a lot of other products and there are definitely none that I would wear while on the beach. Except sunscreen.
I use it everyday, and though I'm not sure if this is scientifically proven, I often layer it on with multiple sunscreen-laced products for extra protection. We're talking facial moisturizer, foundation, basically any product that goes on my face, neck or chest.
But, when it comes to my arms and legs, I break out the easy to use spray: Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Body Mist Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 100+. …Full Story
(Paint illustration to portray true feelings by the author.)
Stranded on a desert island? I'll take a barrel of Aveda Air Control hairspray, please.
Let's be real: If I were stranded on a deserted island with one product request, it would be sunscreen or moisturizer with minimum SPF 50. The sun would off me before any of the usual suspects, like hunger or thirst or falling into a leftover tiger den concealed by palm branches from the Swiss Family Robinson.
But you might have caught by now that our theme week is not grounded in logical decision-making. So that's why I'm going with Aveda Air Control hairspray.
I'm not a product loyalist, to be honest, but this is my favorite thing. It's gentle, fragrant hold elixir in a can that might explode in extreme sunlight (someone, consult science for me) but would make me happy while it lasted. The hairspray is total luxury. No really, at a pry-the-money-from-my-hands cost of $25 per bottle.
For people with fine hair and bangs, though, this is the way to go. The hold is lightweight, so it won't make your bangs look greasy or stiff as it keeps them in place. Bangs can be disorderly, and we do what we must to rein them in. I spritzed this stuff on the daily back when I had full bangs. …Full Story
Stranded on a desert island? Trust me: Your fellow castaways will thank you for packing this fragrant Caress body wash (I recommend 'Sheer Twilight!) after a few days of sweating it out in the hot sun.
I’ve mentioned before that I’m not much of a makeup maven. So when I started racking my brain for theme week ideas, my mind immediately jumped to those strategical items that would make a long Gilligan’s Island experience more enjoyable … like those comfy yoga pants I scored a couple years ago on deep discount at Tar-jay … or my pretty purple and grey Sketchers sneakers that I could walk in for hours.
Y'know, great thoughts about dated items that are no longer accessible to the general public.
So, I started thinking about my everyday routine, and BAM!
If I were stranded in the middle of nowhere, I’d *totally* wish I had my Caress body wash, if for no other reason than that it smells absolutely awesome -- something I’m sure my hypothetical fellow castaways would appreciate after several days of foraging firewood and chopping coconuts and sweating bullets out in the sun.
I actually discovered Caress body wash as part of what felt like a desert island scenario. I was a half day into New Jersey vacay when I realized I’d packed nary a bottle of shower gel. …Full Story
My baby. M.A.C.'s eyebrow pencil, $16. Never leave me.
I feel like we keep doing this for Desert Island Week: "I WAS going to tell you about this, but instead..."
Here I go, too. We just love so many products, it's hard to choose! I was going to tell you how Retin A changed my life, freed me from having acne in my 30s, rebuilt my skin from the ground up leaving it clear and smooth. However, it's prescription and not readily available to everyone. And then I thought, "Maybe we can have a skincare week and I'll ramble on then!"
Plus, really, I CAN go without it. If for some reason, someone stripped the Retin A from my cold grip, I would not be thrilled, but I would be able to persevere. What I really can't go without is my M.A.C. eyebrow pencil. So let's talk about that. …Full Story
Product shot from Sephora.com
If I were stranded I'd want this with me: Clinique's Moisture Surge Extended Thirst Relief. Works like a dream.
This morning I was joking with Deal Diva Katie that if I ever got stranded on a (hopefully) tropical island, all I'd really need was a hand saw.
I'd use it to crack open the coconuts, naturally. And not to drink the milk or eat the fruit, but for the oil -- which quite possibly may be the best thing in my beauty routine these days.
I'll have to tell you about my love affair with coconut oil some other day, because when I got back to my desk, I realized there was probably a different item better suited for this exercise: Clinique's "Moisture Surge Extended Thirst Relief."
Don't let the long name turn you off. This stuff is no joke and it WORKS. (It's also expensive as heck, but we'll get to that later.)
Rimmel Scandaleyes mascara, snagged for about $5 at Target.
I have a theory about Lost. It does not involve lotto numbers, monsters or semi-parallel-next-door universes. I haven’t actually seen much Lost, but my boyfriend recently binge-watched it on Netflix and I was near the living room for some of it, so I picked up a plot point or two.
One of the things that stuck out to me the most was the fact that all the women on the island always looked awesome no matter what. Even dirt-smudged with gross island goo, they still had perfect eyebrows and their hair was always more beachy waves than tangled mess.
So my theory. I think there was an episode that involved the blonde con man hording useful supplies found in suitcases. They probably had the same thing going on with beauty supplies from abandoned luggage.
If I’d been on Lost I think I would have done okay for myself setting up a buy-sell-trade beauty supplies station under a palm tree or something. I would, however, horde my favorite mascara all for myself – Rimmel Scandaleyes. …Full Story
All of us on the rooftop at Birchwood, photo by a nice lady whose name we do not know. Thanks, miss!
Happy My Outfit Monday!
Last week, the Divas got together for a very intense, high-stakes business meeting at the Canopy at the Birchwood, the rooftop bar overlooking the water in St. Petersburg. Over elderflower cocktails, we discussed ways to make the blog better, more engaged, and threw around some new features we hope to introduce, including more themed weeks. More on that in a minute.
First, our outfits! …Full Story
These are not my eyebrows, but they do look expertly done.
Do you ever look in the mirror and realize with horror that there are two caterpillars crawling across your forehead? It's like one day your eyebrows are totally fine, shaped just the way you like them and then BAM! they are out of control.
I had one of those realizations the other day and needed a fix fast.
Tweezing was an option. But, besides cleaning up a few strays, my brows also needed some shape, something I'm not comfortable doing myself. I fear I'll get too zealous and be left with nothing.
The option of threading has been off the table since a painful experience a year ago. Some people swear by the ancient method of hair removal that uses strings to pluck several hairs at a time. But, I'm apparently too big of a wimp -- I cried the entire session.
That leaves waxing. But, where to go?
Sure, you can get your eyebrows waxed at the hair or nail salon, but I wanted to try something new. Ulta's Benefit Brow Bar seemed to fit the bill
Housed in select Ultas (including the Brandon and Clearwater locations), the Benefit Brow Bar is staffed by professionals trained in the art of eyebrow shaping. At least, that's what the website says. …Full Story
Confession #1: I've always been a little in awe of women who rock really bold eye makeup.
Confession #2: I'm almost always not that girl.
Are you thinking yet, Well then why am I staring at a picture of you with green eye shadow? Settle down, I'm getting there.
Kate Moss for Topshop for Nordstrom
I'm an avid oggler of 1990s supermodels (in a fashion way, not in a creepy way). I love the glamour, the devil-may-care attitude of Naomi Campbell throwing cell phones at people, the unashamed lips of Christy Turlington, the snobby snootery of Linda Evangelista. It all spoke to a very gold chain, Versace time in our sartorial history. Kate Moss was always there on the fringes being alt, but I was never a huge fan in the same way. She was not a glamazon, but rather, a waif, a dressed-down girl in jeans and Converse. But lately, when I scan through Pinterest, I am totally drawn to her rumpled aesthetic. Maybe I'm just older, but there's something cool and accessible about Miss Moss, and she's landed on my People pin board more than once.
So maybe I'll also like her new collection for Nordstrom, too. It's in the store's Topshop collection (this is a lot of layers -- Kate Moss for Topshop for Nordstrom). Per the press release: …Full Story
Photo via Rent the Runway.
CLICK FOR SLIDE SHOW | Oh, this dress? NBD, it's just a $1,000 Badgley Mischka dress (that I rented for $30).
My group trip to Vegas was months in the works, giving me plenty of time to shop for good deals on going-out dresses. Even better, I got a complimentary checked bag on the flight there, so I arrived with a roller stuffed with seven dresses. I wanted to be prepared for anything.
This isn't the story of how my final-sale finds from Piperlime and Express served me well in Sin City. It's about how I abandoned them for the allure of temporary designer glamour and have zero regrets.
My friend Ileana (of hair-tuck tryout fame) wasn't finding what she wanted to wear in Vegas in stores around Tampa Bay. She decided to reserve a flashy silver dress from a Rent the Runway boutique in Las Vegas.
Rent the Runway, as you may know, is an online store that allows customers to borrow designer dresses for a sliver of the cost. Normally, you pick out what you want from the store and they ship a dress to you in your size (plus a size above or below it, just in case). Vegas and New York City are the only places with stores.
The four girls of our trip decided to join her in picking up the dress. We figured, hey, maybe we'll try on some dresses too, just for fun, it'll be silly. Sure. …Full Story
Katie, Stephanie, Keyonna and Kameel ready to go backstage at Macy's in Westfield Countryside!
A funny thing happened while we were getting ready to host our latest Macy's fashion show.
I elected to wear a breezy shorts jumper, and Katie and I were discussing how I should wear my hair with it. I got that crazed look in my eye, as if I had just eaten a handful of espresso beans, and exclaimed "A BIG BUN!" Katie got that look in her eye, that look of reason and sense, and said, "Maybe just do something more simple." I relented.
On Saturday, when I sat in the hair chair, I kept my mouth shut. I showed the nice Aveda stylists my jumper, and immediately they were both like, "A BUN!" And so commenced the largest Kardashian bun of my life. Yes, it was all my hair -- a giant teased ponytail twisted in a coil and messily pinned. And I loved it. Katie did, too.
We had yet another successful fashion show, this time at a new mall, Westfield Countryside. We had a blast hosting with Kristin Swenson of BonBon Rose Girls, who is always such a fun, down to Earth gal to hang out with. Kristin wore head to toe Michael Kors, including a hot jumpsuit (jumpsuits all summer long!) and snake print heels. …Full Story
Just one of the many thoughtful messages you can create.
You know how some apps are super useful? Like the ones where you can do your banking straight from your phone, or go thrifting without leaving the house, or keep your various to-do lists organized?
emotiKarl is not one of those apps. But it's fun!
You can type out messages using lots of little Karl Lagerfeld faces (or with little icons of the designer/artist/photographer/Pippa Middleton shade thrower's sunglasses), and his cat's face, of course, because Internet, etc. You can save the messages like images and text them, tweet them, Instagram them, Facebook them... you get the idea.
And who knows, maybe it can be useful. Let's say your friend sends you a picture of, I don't know, the denim overalls, neon orange turtleneck and socks-and-sandals combo they plan on wearing. They'd like your opinion. You're not feeling it, but you don't want to seem rude, so just send a sad face Karl. Let him break it to them.
In case you're feeling inspired, emotiKarl is free in the app store (as it should be).
Nasty Gal's Courted Skort in gingham is the same shape and style as the skort I fell for at TJ Maxx but I'm not really into the pattern. It's on sale for $29.
While shopping at TJ Maxx recently, I came across a blue asymmetrical skort.
My first reaction was to question whether adults are allowed to wear skorts. My second was to try it on. I mean, what's not to like? There's freedom in wearing shorts but a ladylike appeal to a skirt. Combining both seems genious.
I remember wearing them in my youth. In fact, I wore a skort for my senior portraits, a light tan corduroy pair that blended with the sand on the beach.
Sadly, the blue pair didn't fit. I liked them so much, though, that I played that mind game where you try to rationalize purchasing something totally wrong for you anyway.
I'll lose a few pounds, they're not that tight, that seam probably won't rip right down the back when I bend down.
But, I resisted and put them back on the shelf.
Now, days later, I'm still imagining outfits I could have created with them. And I'm on the search. I have yet to find a suitable comparison but the internet is vast so there is still hope.
I know I'm not alone. What item do you regret not buying or finding in your size? What got away?Full Story
Lil' floating Deal Diva heads on the event poster.
You knew it was only a matter of time before you stumbled into Macy's on a Saturday to pick up a pair of leggings and saw our festive faces staring back at you, announcing trends into microphones. Friends, that time is upon us.
The Times Deal Divas are BACK, live and in person, hosting another fabulous fashion show this weekend at Macy's. This time, we're taking the show on the road to Westfield Countryside, 7001 US Highway 19 in Clearwater. The fun starts at 2 p.m. on the second floor in the Impulse department.
Making things even sweeter, we're hosting this show with our fashiony friend Kristin Swenson from BonBon Rose Girls (follow this awesome blog if you don't already). We can't wait to induct her into our Macy's backstage hijinks, slathering on eye shadow while we practice saying "PALAZZO PANTS" without popping our p's. Relive our past Macy's shows here and here. …Full Story