Latest Posts

Falling for Tracy Reese’s Beautiful Floral Prints

Floral prints have a special place in my heart, as evident by my choice of bridesmaids dresses. I find a good floral pattern to actually be rather timeless, especially when the fit is on point.

I’ve been slowly growing my wardrobe garden with a bevy of all to similar looking midi skirts, as event here, here, and well here. But I’ve been hitting some luck with some full length numbers, that off the hanger, fit my short of stature frame.

This is where the Isla Floral Dress from Tracy Reese comes in. And my excuse to share these photos of me frolicking around the Chicago Botanic Gardens.

Tracy Reese, the women, is a Detroit native, with a wonderfully inclusive mission statement ‘to make every woman feel beautiful.’ Her various ready to wear items evoke a retro, almost bohemian femininity, that embraces playful patterns, and beautiful bright colors. (Oh and she’s also dressed Michelle Obama too)

I’ve been loving a number of items from Tracy’s, I believe Anthropologie exclusive line, Plenty. Each items silhouette is said too ‘complements its wearer’s natural beauty, showcasing her inherent uniqueness and charm.’ that as evident with the Isla Floral Dress, I’ll admit excessive pictures I published, I totally agree.

I saw this dress on line in the new in section a while back, but the styling and pictures made me pass over it with out a thought. But in person, the greens are more vibrant, the print more eye catching and the fabric more soft and swishy.

When I picked up this piece I was on the hunt for a wedding guest dress. I knew the wedding was outdoors, but in Autumn in Chicago: so I needed something that could layer well, but also be comfortable enough if the sun poked her head out.

I also needed something that toed the line between cocktail hour formal, and day time garden party, because again, not sure what the wedding vibe was going to be. The dress, to me, at least, ended up checking all the boxes.

The weather ended up a bit stormy, so the ceremony was inside, but as the couple said their vows, the sun burst through, and blessed the last few hours of the day with the most epic golden pink sky, that basked everyone in a soft rose hue.

On that note- If you ever find yourself in the Chicago area, and can make the trek out to the Botanic Gardens, they are something to behold. We only got a short moment between the ceremony and reception to explore the grounds, but found a new enchanting corner at every turn.

In the case you happen to be crushing on Tracey’s designs yourself, I recommend slipping some on in person, the cuts seem to morph to each women’s individual shape, but… you can also scroll through a few options I found below. Enjoy!

Testing Out Bite Beauty’s Amuse Bouche Liquified Lipstick

I am regretting not making a beauty predictions post at the start of the year! I outlined it and everything! … and low and behold a slew of my predictions are coming true. One such prediction: a bevy of not so dry liquid lipstick launches. I know, with the abundance of matte formulas dominating the market for the last few years it was pretty obvious that it would start to swing in the other direction.

Well Bite Beauty has joined in on the not-matte-but sorta glossy-liquid lipstick bandwagon with the Amuse Bouche Liquified Lipsticks. We saw the Giorgio Armani Lip Maestros, Burberry Liquid Lip Velvets and the Marc Jacobs Liquid Lip Creams earlier this year but Bites new launches have even more sheen.

Bite Beauty Amuse Bouche Liquified Lipstick Left-Right: Whip, Chutney, Éclair, Purée, Candied, & Flambé

The brand just launched 12 (13 if you are VIB rouge) rather stunning colors in this new formula. True to Bites nature, they have the edible, food grade formula, lemony scent, and of course nod to cuisine with cheekily named colors. This time with names that are more of an ode to the transformative process in cooking.

I think when Bite teased this launched people assumed it would be more of a true liquid lipstick, which these are very much not. The Amuse Bouche Liquified Lipstick are wonderfully pigmented, with a few exceptions, but with a rather impacting glazed looking finish. It’s not quite glossy, but not satin either. It has a sheen for sure.

Bite Beauty Amuse Bouche Liquified Lipstick Right-Left: Whip, Chutney, Éclair, Purée, Candied, & Flambé

Bite Beauty Amuse Bouche Liquified Lipstick

Bite Beauty Amuse Bouche Liquified Lipstick in Flambé

The formula has a rather heavy feel that transfers easily, and tends to cling to the teeth. This isn’t the type of lipstick that you can set and forget. These are messy, will get in your hair and start to fad oddly especially in hot, sweaty weather. But the faff aside, they are unique and the effort it goes to apply and maintain is, in my opinion, worth the trouble. at least most of the time…

I go on a bit more about formula comparisons, opacity issues and of course give a range of arm and lip swatches for 6 colors out of the collections in the video below! Have a watch! AND Enjoy~

The Vogue Birchbox

It’s sorta crazy to think that Vogue is 125 years old! I was an avid Vogue reader from a young age, well to be honest, an avid picture looker-at-er. I was always drawn into the interesting editorial images that would spark my imagination and middle school outfit choices. Funny now that I am more at the target age for Vogue that I haven’t thumbed one of its pages in years.

I think YouTube, Pinterest and Instagram probably play a role in that, but I am still nostalgic about my dear vogue. AND as you may know a bit of a beauty freak and deal hound, so after hunting down a coupon code, I just had to get my hands on the Vogue 125 Anniversary box in collaboration with Birchbox.

I’ve steadily made my way through the boxes mainly rose themed offerings, and I’d say I am pretty damn pleased. The millennial pink box comes with an assortment of beauty items: from skincare all the way to nails. With some exclusive products from brands like NARS and RMS along with some exciting new launches from the likes of Ouai and Charlotte Tilbury. So here’s my little breakdown and review for this celebratory collaboration. 

The three skincare items you get in the box are the Rose & Hibiscus Face Mist from Herbivore Botanics, the Immortelle & Rose Face Balm from Northern California’s Earth Tu Face, and the newly released Dry Sheet Mask from Charlotte Tilbury.
The Charlotte Tilbury Instant Magic Facial Dry Sheet Mask  (1 mask but can be used 3 times) was one of the big selling points for me with this box. It’s a pricey item in its own right, and although I was curious about it, couldn’t justify the price. I have used it only once, but I get the hype on this guy. It is indeed VERY hydrating, but without all the mess from a normal sheet mask. I think I could write a blog post, or make a video rather, dedicated to this item alone… so I’ll just leave it at that for now.

The other two items are from natural brands that have been on my radar for years, but I just haven’t gotten around to. The Earth Tu Face Face Balm (full size) is a lovely thick consistency that melts into the skin like an oil. This could be a big favorite for me in the winter. It has a heavy listing of essential oils though, but with my many uses, has yet to bother me. Herbivore Botanicals Rose Hibiscus Face Mist (full size) is nothing groundbreaking, but nice it’s always nice to have another rose mist lying around. It’ll get used up, but it’s nothing special for me.

One of the most fun things about this box is the exclusive items with their take on the Vogue Rose. Which is a real thing by the way!

The Nars Soft Touch Shadow Pencil in Vogue Rose (full size / exclusive) is a lovely creamy champagne pale pink, with a shiny, almost pearlescent finish. It’s shimmery but not sparkly. This looks lovely smudged across the eye lids paired with other eyeshadows or just on its one to make the eyes big and bright

RMS Beauty Lip2Cheek in Vogue Rose (full size / exclusive) is a sophisticated yet youthful rose color with hints of coral and peach. Its a thick formula (true to RMS) that melts into the cheeks that looks natural, but can easily be built up. I am not the biggest fan of this on my lips, but find that it mixes well with a gloss or layered on a lipstick. Its dewy looking, but without any shimmer.

The Jin Soon Nail Polish in Vogue Rose (full size/ exclusive) was a surprise hit for me! It’s a fantastic vibrant peachy orange that just screams summer. The formula on this guy is pretty stellar. Dry quickly, opaque in two coats and has a decently long wear time!

And lastly the box includes a full size of the Aerin Rose Lip Conditioner and a travel size of the also newly released Ouai Rose Hair & Body Oil. I actually got a sample of the Aerin Rose Lip Conditioner (full size) some years back and have been wanting it ever since. It’s a lovely thick lip balm that has an intense scent of rose. It has a light pink sheen to it and well, just feels fancy.

The Ouai Rose Hair Oil (travel size) is thinner then Ouai’s normal hair oil, absorbs a little better and doesn’t way down the hair as much. And although it does smell like roses, it kinda doesn’t smell like the best most fresh of roses.

The box also came with a Vogue subscription offering, which I lost immediately, but is also worth mentioning. So as you can tell this was a pretty good steal of a box, if you are a rose fan of course.

I honestly thought this was gonna sell out right away, so put off writing about it for a while. Luckily it seems to still be kicking around! So if you were looking for a nice feminine gift for yourself or a beauty lover you know then the Birchbox x Vogue 125 collaboration this is a fantastically assembled box!

Art and a Wide Leg

Last week Jeff and I finally got a chance to check out the much buzzed about 14th Factory: a multi-media interactive art experience tucked away just outside of Downtown. It’s a massive space, with something new around every corner.

I’ve been wanting to expand my blog- It’s mainly beauty on here, but I want to incorporate more happenings in and around Los Angeles, Travel and yes, a bit of Fashion too. So having husband in tow, I had him document these new (er) jeans I’ve been living in from Madewell.

So here is a strange hybrid post: part longwinded art rambling and part superficial enjoyment for a pair of pants.

About those Pants…

I am happy wide legs and culottes are finding their way back into style. Skinny Jeans can feel a bit suffocating, and, well, revealing. I’ve always had great luck with Madewell Jeans, even being short of stature, I can usually find something that works by them.

These Wide-Leg Crop Jeans have a hip hugging high waist, that on me sits just above the belly button. I’ve mainly been styling them with a pair of wedges (the ones pictured are actually my wedding shoes), but also like the relaxed and even art teacher vibe they give with a pair of flat mules or sandals.

Considering it’s Summer, and the weathers been acting like it, minimal makeup, open toed shoes and light layers have been key.

The entrapment of bras is no fun when you’re dripping with sweat so I opted to go commando with an American Apparel Bodysuit. It’s tight fit makes it pair well with a more loose leg.

I topped everything off with a vintage glass statement necklace I bought in San Francisco when is was a Sophomore in college. I seriously love this bit of Jewelry with it’s delicate pink flowers and green birds painted on blue glass. And of course, I carted around my Cult Gai Ark Bag– a trendy piece of Instagram Art in itself

Back to the Art…

It took us about an hour to walk around the entire space and take all the pieces in. We did go on a hot Thursday afternoon, so I can imagine the crowds on the weekends at a place like this can get overwhelming.

I love these sort of socially engaging short term art projects- the fact that they are temporary makes you stare a little longer, to impress into your mind something that you wont get tomorrow.

On another not, or thought rather…  it was interesting going here in the age of social media- and well, now being a social media person myself. I too want the best, coolest, picture. Everyone there was enacting in their own photo shoot, and I too was taking a part.

Stepping back, and noticing, made it a staged piece in its own. The creators of these art works must have know the ‘gramable-ness’ of what they were creating, and the participation aspect of this place makes that dance a piece all on it’s own.

But after exhausting myself in documentation and ‘candid’ attempts at having my picture taken, my favorite parts were the places that you couldn’t opt for a selfie. The immersive projections, that you can try to capture, but the experience of them and their surrounding force made me take pause, and just take them in.

And with that… I don’t have anything to share from my most favorite exhibits in The 14th Factory, for I was more rapt up in enjoyment and awe then creating a token for myself. But maybe that bit of mystery will get you out the door and over here, or at least to a place like this.

Although The 14th Factory will be closed soon, I highly encourage you to keep your ear to the ground about local happening like this in your area. When I lived in Seattle temporary exhibits not too dismaler to this one popped up at least a couple times of year!

PS! happily at the time of writing this post, The 14th Factory has expanded their stay until at least the end of July! You can get your tickets here:

A Look at the Kypris Moonlight Catalyst & Antioxidant Dew

This has been a post I’ve been meaning to write for months now. I’ve been testing Kypris Moonlight Catalyst and Antioxidant Dew on and off since Christmas time and just can’t really put a finger on how I feel about them. I am about a 2/3 done with the Moonlight Catalyst and just reached a little more then half way with the Antioxidant Dew.

So with that stated lets get into it… and why not just go ahead and start with the superficial. These are fucking beautiful looking. Big round of applause for who ever came up with the packaging. From the white boxes with silver details these come in to the midnight blue bottles with dreamy graphics, they really made me want these for that alone.

Now the company itself is very natural with its ingredients but has a strong emphasis on green science with its formulations. They are known for using high quality ingredients, but at very high prices. Their products start in the mid 60’s and go all the way up to over 200 dollars. I was really lucky though and snagged both these up at a greatly discounted rate during the holiday shopping season.

The Antioxidant Dew is probably Kypris most popular product. It’s a milky looking but silky feeling hydrating serum packed with active ingredients, 26 of them in fact. And that might be the problem for me. It has amazing stuff in it, but something in that long list has potentially not been sitting well with my skin.

I’ve pulled this out a few times and gave it a solid go and have had oddly placed breakouts each time. There is still the potential for coincidence with poor diet choices so I will be giving this another isolated trial before chucking it completely. I like to be very thorough.

It does really have amazing stuff in it though, some stuff my skin normally gets on very well with: like camellia, hyaluronic acid, tamanu and algae. I have a sneaking suspicion it might by the Comfrey in it that’s causing me issues. But I will be sure to report back.

There’s been one other things about this serum that’s made it hard for me to get my thoughts straight. It is often presented as a hydrating serum, something to add a glowy dew to the face. And although it does do that, I find myself using a lot to do so. If you have combo to oily skin the advertised couple of drops might be enough for you, but with my dry skin I found myself using large pipets full and quickly seeing the bottle diminish. And at 72 dollars a pop I had a small heart attack.

A lot of people tout the amazingness of this serum though, but a few have had reactions similar to mine (Anna from The Anna Edit for example) but like I said, I will give it one more go. I don’t want to be left out of the club. SO many people love this stuff!

On the other hand the Moonlight Catalyst and I have gotten on pretty well. At first I wasn’t sure it was doing much. I was using an abundance of actives and too may acid treatments at the time, which I have since dialed back completely. Now that my face is at a much more stable place it has been very very receptive to this.

The Moonlight Catalyst is sold as a retinol alternative and has a thick jelly consistency with a light peachy scent. It uses fermented pumpkin enzymes to lightly exfoliate the skin and biomimetic EGF, a peptide which plumps the skin along with a long list of plant extracts.

Now I have not seen drastic results with this serum, but I have seen a light refreshing toning to my complexion. It is gentle enough to use nightly, and has some good nutrient rich healing hydrators in it like Sea Buckthorn and Rosehip.

I think if you are accustomed to heavier retinol and lots of acids then you will probably not get on with this. But if you are sensitive like me and haven’t always danced well with retinol this might be a nice natural alternative to try. It is very pricey though. At $77 dollars a bottle I wont be repurchasing this any time soon, not unless I can get it at a heavily discounted rate again.

I know I let the price tag weigh heavy on my opinions of these, but as a consumer it is hard to not judge something in relation to its monetary value. I am no stranger to high end beauty, but I am money conscious and seek out deals where I can. These are luxurious priced oils that most of us can not afford. I think if these were both about 20 dollars less I think they would be more fairly priced in relation to my experience of their performance.

Have you tested out either of these Kypris Oils? What are your thoughts on them? Have you found the experience of them relates well to the price? I’d love to know!

the lovely lilah b.

A few weeks back I received a package from new makeup company lilah b. This is a brand I’ve been stalking for months on Instagram, so I was ecstatic that they sent a couple things my way. This luxurious minimalistic brand just screams elegance.

Their products are, at least from what I have played with, high performing and multi functional. And of course, beautifully packaged in hefty waited ‘stones,’ that slide open to reveal what’s inside. I’ve been using both the Bronzed Beauty and the Divine Duo in b. true pretty much every day since their arrival.

The Bronzed Beauty Bronzer Duo* gives a natural sin kissed glow, and is just the perfect shade for my fair complexion. I like to swirl the two shades together, and have even gotten into the habit of draping the powder from my cheeks bones to my eyelids. It’s the perfect touch of added depth to my eyes that looks as chic as it is easy.

The Retractable Bronzer Brush* is designed for the bronzer formula, and they do indeed pair flawlessly together. It’s made of super soft 100% hypo-allergenic, cruelty-free and vegan-friendly fibers. I love its compact size, and since it’s retractable, has been great to chuck in my bag and use along with my favorite pressed powders.

The Divine Lip & Cheek Duo in b.true* is a classic, and classy multifunctional mauve pink. And although it is a multifunctional product I find the effects on the lips verses cheeks to be rather different. The formula is nice on the lips, but for some reason doesn’t suit me on its own. But I’ve found it looks lovely when layered over a liquid lipstick, or mixed in with a gloss.

I’ve been very very into my cream products lately, especially on the cheek and this just hits all the right marks for me. It’s rather pigmented and has great staying power on the cheeks, especially when set with powder. I’ve loved wearing it on it’s own or layering it with Hourglass’s Ambient Lighting Blush in Incandescent Electra. The Divine Lip and Cheek’s come in eight different shades, so there’s a color for every mood (and one).

lilah b. does have a minimalistic approach but does offers a full face. I have yet to hear anything about the foundation and concealers they have but am very intrigued. I have heard a lot of lovely things about their eyeshadows. Two of my favorite blogger ttsandra and A little Bit Etc have both worn the Palette Perfection Eye Quad in b.stunning and sung it’s praises. So that along with their complexion products are going on my must/next to try list.

lilah b is sold at dermstore (who often has site wide discounts), Barney’s, Net-A-Porter and of course

*gifted from brand

New Beauty | A Look Inside My Mailbox

I am a self confessed beauty junkie. I get that itch when it’s been a while since something new has come across my metaphorical desk (still working on my home/office set up…)

I’ve been super lucky lately and had a lot of stuff sent my way (as well as a few bits I picked up myself). So I thought why not give a bit of a run down on some of the things I’m jazzed to come my way recently.

Makeup wise I was thrilled to hear from Axiology. They are a sustainable organic luxury lipstick brand that is committed to supporting environmental causes.

The lipsticks are packaged in gorgeous golden pop out bullets, with highly pigmented colors inside. I received two of their top sellers: Worth, a warm autumn leaves orange red and Instinct a brown toned nude with a touch of sandcastle glitter.

Speaking of glitter. I qualified for the new Influnetser voxbox in partnership with Marc Jacobs. They complementary sent over the new Dew Drops Coconut Gel Highlighter.  It’s part of their expanded coconut range, and unfortunately doesn’t have the most natural coconut scent… BUT this thing is massive, and packs a massive strobing punch. I think I am set on highlighter for life.

I have been very curious about the Deciem range, and while filling my cart with Ordinary products I decided to round it out with the ever Instagramed Niod Sanskrit Cleanser.

This is more of an intense cleanser then I thought it would be. It’s got a milky, almost soft butter style consistency and smells a lot like pretzels. I am not entirely sure if this is right for my skin type, but plan to bust it out more when I am feeling the oiliness of mid summer.

De Mamiel has been on my wish list for ages. Anthropologie started stocking the range so I took advantage on a recent sale and treated myself to the Restorative Cleansing Balm. I have used this a handful of times now and it is an experience. Super nourishing on the skin, packed with incredible ingredients and topped off with an intoxicating scent. I can’t wait to get more De Mamiel in my life, the products are a true sensory experience.

The Pr company behind BeautyRX offered to send a few things my way. I haven’t seen or heard much about this brand but am always down to try something new. The line is founded by an experienced dermatologist. They sent me a few things to address my dry sensitive skin: the Soothing Moisture Cream and the Ultra Hydrating Eye Repair Cream.

They were also very kind and  let me pick out a couple things that peaked my interest. I am very enticed by the Exfoliating Green Tea Sunscreen (it sounds unlike anything I’ve ever tried before) and the Triple Vitamin C Serum (something I’ve very much need back in my routine).

The website Nature21Blvd reached out to me on Instagram if I’d be interested in testing anything from the Thank You Farmer range they stock. I selected two things from the True Water collection: the Toner and the Serum.

I have yet to test out the well reviewed True Water Serum, but have really been enjoying the Toner. It’s a hydrating, Korean style toner, that layers very well and adds a hefty amount of moisture. Nature21Blvd also socks a range of natural products from the likes of Youth to The People and Hannes Dottir along with a bevy of Korean staples.

I’ve been on a little bit of a Ouai Haircare kick. It all started with the Jen Edit Kit I tested out around Christmas time. I fell for the Finishing Cream and had to pick up a full size when the travel one ran out. I also snatched up (not pictured) the blogger favorite Hair Oil, and although it smells lovely, I prefer the one from Moroccan Oil way more

And lastly during the aforementioned sale at Anthropologie I snatched up a small Golden Waves Sea Salt Shimmer Spray from Captain Blankenship. This is the first product I’ve tried from this all natural brand and I think it’s lovely. Its has a great scent that’s not overpowering and gives a nice beachey grit to my loose waves. Oh, and it has small specks of glitter that might not last for too long, but give a glisten to the hair for a few hours.


Give Back with W.ANT Skincare

Based in Singapore W.ANT Skincare makes a curated collection of skincare focused on non toxic and multi tasking products. They have a lovely mission statement of giving back, and of helping marginalised women in different countries. So with each purchase of W.ANT you are contributing to local communities of women in Bali, Indonesia and Benin, Africa.

W.ANT also focuses on sustainability, they do not have any box packaging, instead the product comes in a hand woven reusable bag made using a Balinese traditional method. I was super happy to test out there Cleansing Trio of this newer brand that has such lovely ingredients and an ethos to match.

The Beet This Honey Cleanser was my favorite product in the line up. I am a sucker for anything honey, so this was probably a sure thing from the get go. It is made with over 60% raw honey, and you can taste that. I’ve always found honey to be very soothing on my skin and great for break outs. I’ve been busting this cleanser out when my skin has needed something very gentle and healing. It’s not the best at removing makeup, so I prefer is for a second cleanser. Also it is a rather thick formula, so It works best with a warm face towel for removal.

The Ginger Clay Scrub Mask I a nice gentle scrub that’s not overly abrasive. I actually prefer something with a bit more grit so I instead like this best as a mask. It’s got a wonderfully simple formula: coconut, two types of clay and ginger. It has an almost savory tropical scent that I find very unique. I mix equal parts of water or  W.ANT’s own hydrosol with the powder to create a thick paste. I find that clay masks can be a little harsh as they dry so adding in a few drops of The Face oil from this range really helps.

The Facial Spritzer in this line was a surprise hit for me. I really love the sprayer on it, creates a nice even mist on the face. It also layers well with products and is great for a mask mixer. I used it with W.ANT’s own mask as well as some favorites from both Evan Healy and Leahlani.

The Face Oil is a nice mix of antioxidant rich oils like Rosehip, Kukui and Tamanu. It’s a rather light consistency that absorbs well. I can’t speak to much to it since the vial I have is only a sample, but it’s been a nice moisturizer and mixer in masks.

If you are interested in checking out W.ANT you can find them here!

Introducing Nylon Bee & My Favorite LA Work Outs

There’s two things I want to talk about in todays post – Nylon Bee and My Favorite LA Work Outs. Both fitness, which is a departure for me, but I’ve been aching to stretch my content so here we go… (nice puns right?!?)

Lets start with Nylon Bee. You might have seen the skincare brand Lyeska mentioned around these parts a few times… here, here and well here. The Brooklyn based skincare line was founded by the lovely Katya Hegg, the line is full of great, antioxidant rich, natural products. Katya reached out to me a few weeks back letting me in on a new business venture she was working on. She’s partnered with Carla Susanto to launch a curated activewear website geared toward busy ladies like myself who want to look top notch while working out with out paying a premium.

I loved the concept. They sell an awesome selection of colorful basics and muted staples to get your work out on with. The two pieces I tested out are honestly the nicest work out wear I’ve ever had the pleasure to sweat my ass off in. The Karma Evelyn Bra* has a nice high impact support so I love it for running or doing intense interval work outs at the likes of Barry’s Bootcamp or Burn 60. AND did you see the strappy back? Gorgeous.

The Toughen Up Emana* leggings by Liquido are sliming and have uber cool detailing. They make me feel like I almost fit in at the hip hollywood Cycle House, and a lot less gremlin like while waiting in line for my cold brew at Alfred’s after. I know, I’m sounding way fancier than I really am. I guess that’s part of the point. 🙂

So if you are on the hunt for chic threads for working out in and like supporting women entrepreneurs please check out their website here!

Secondly, My favorite Los Angeles Work Outs.

Hiking. When ever I get the chance, or time rather, I choose a nice free stroll out in nature. There’s a plethora of hikes in the LA area but if I can’t make the trek out, I am super fortunate to live very close to the Baldwin Hills Stairs (as pictured in this post).

The stairs are intense and sure to make you achy for days. Think lunges all the way up hill. The surrounding trails are a nice alternative though and are flanked by yellow and purple blooms right now. And top it all off – At the top there’s a great panoramic view of Los angeles that on clear days you can see from Santa Monica to Downtown.

Rise Nation. After good old fashioned fresh air, I think I frequent Rise Nation on Melrose the most often. The classes are only 30 minutes, but you sweat. It’s some where between climbing, running-in-place and rowing. The instructors there are a blast, they play heart pumping tunes and you’re in and out with a full body work out in one half hour comedy. It’s on the second floor of a building in the middle of West Hollywood that’s got a great scenic patio to cool down on and stretch afterwards.

Cycle House. This place can feel intimidating at first. The instructors are intense and not afraid to push you. This is the first cycling place I’ve been to, but I really love it. It’s pretty convenient for me to get to, and it’s just a great way to get out any aggression. I love the sort of pack mentality the class can get into and keeping my cycling in tune with the banging rhythms. The music here does not disappoint. You get to ride to the likes or Rihanna, Drake and Beyonce. Also they’ve got cold eucalyptus towels and fresh fruit waiting for you afterwards. win, win, win.

Modo Yoga. I’m not gonna lie, it’s been a while since I’ve been to Modo Yoga, but it’s an old staple in my book. I used to have an unlimited pass there and during that time I got pretty toned. It’s hot yoga, so prepare to sweat! I loved the different style of classes they offered, from Yang Yin (a standing series), to various flow based classes. They also offer their staple Modo classes that have a nice mix of styles with the option of silent or soundtrack. That’s the only place where this place faltered. Some peoples playlist got a yoga F.

*gift from Nylon Bee

For Earth Day: 5 Green Beauty Brands I’m Loving Right Now

I like to think of myself as an eco conscious person. Think of myself… but I know I have a long way to go. This is a subject I want to expand upon on my blog and social media, but I am still in the process of figuring it all out for myself. Less waste, fast fashion, and even skincare. All things I want to explore and challenge myself with. I’m not sure if I’ll ever be 100% green in my beauty buying  (I like my Korean Skincare….) but it’s been a strong theme for me the last few months. So in honor of Earth Day here are 5 green leaning brands I’ve been loving as of late.

Uliv is a local California brand that I found out about at the Indie Beauty Expo this past January. They currently only offer one product, but it’s stellar. The Golden Chai Facial Souffle* is made up almost completely of natural ingredients, many organic and hand crafted. It smells fantastic, moisturizes really well and includes some of my favorite ingredients like Manuka Honey, Turmeric and Seabuckthorn.

I had the fortune of meeting Indie Lee herself a couple of weeks back. She was a pleasure. She’s got a zest for life and it shows in her products. I first fell for her cleaners, the Rosehip and then the Brightening, both are refreshing and gentle on the skin. I’ve also really been enjoying the CoQ10 Toner as well, it smells divine. And recently I started incorporating her Squalene Oil and my face just drinks it up.

I’d been eyeing Leahlani Skincare for months via Instagram. The products are gorgeously packaged, and I was happy that when I got my hands on several items that the outside matched the inside. So far I’ve tested two masks, The Honey Love  and the Mermaid Mask, both are sensorial skin treats. The Aloha Ambrosia Elixir* sinks in beautifully and The Bless Beauty Balm* is in a world of its own.

I’ve been slowly testing out offerings from newer skincare brand Farmacy. The line is built around a unique powerhouse strain of echinacea and they use a lot of natural ingredients in their formulations. The Coconut Gel Sheet Masks are fantastic and I got a deluxe sample of the Honey Savior Salve and its the perfect handbag companion (they should really sell it in a mini size, the large looks a little big for the purse) I’ve also been enjoying their two newest launches the Green Clean Cleansing Balm* and the Green Screen Sunscreen*. Reviews to come for both!

By far one of the most luxurious brands I have every tried, de Mamiel is in a category all her own. So far I have only tested the Restorative Cleansing Balm, but it is an indulgent ritual experience for the skin. The smell is transfixing, and I love massaging it onto my face and letting it sit for 30 minutes as a mask. The line is hand batched in small quantities and made with thoughtful organic ingredients. The formulation list is an herbal lovers dream. I’ve got the Pure Calm Cleansing Dew and Exhale Daily Moisturizing Nectar on the way and cant wait to dive into this range further.

*Pr Samples, Gifts from brands.