Clearly Bronzed

Where was this when I was ballroom dancing! In ballroom, bronze is not only “beautiful” but begrudgingly a “must-do.”  If you want to be taken seriously – and I’m not exaggerating – you better believe you need to grace that floor looking like a golden goddess.  Pale skin is NOT in, much to my own dismay.  Protesting the fact won’t get you anywhere. . . 

Trust me on that.

allure.com

Enter – years too late (*insert expletive here*) – this phenomenally, brilliantly clear Hydra-Mousse from Tan-Luxe. It apparently delivers exactly what it claims to, minus all the horrendous “side effects” of a traditionally brown-dyed solution.  

Now I can’t be too hard on the brown-tinted selections out there – they DO make it easier to see and smooth out mistakes.  BUT…the prospect of using a self-tanner and NOT having overly-orange skin where you’re drier, OR clothing, sheets, and expensive costumes that have decided to tan along with you. . .well, that’s pretty damn fabulous.

I mean, dancers everywhere can rejoice finally.  No more brown streaks, overly glowing elbow, or horrific scent (thanks a lot, DHA!) It isn’t inexpensive necessarily but then if you’re saving on cleaning bills (and not freaking out about warming up and starting to smell funny!) this might be for you!

The Redolence O’ Halloween

I really can’t get enough of Halloween, and given that scents play an integral role in memories – creating and recalling – I have a deep-rooted love of fragrance, particularly the ones that center on this time of year. 

I am, however, incredibly particular.  Once upon a time I fell in love with Acqua Di Gio by Armani – when it was discontinued some 15 years after I discovered it, I was horribly distressed.  Aqua was one of the very few fragrances that managed clean floral without the oft’ cloying aroma of the market majority – for me that was the ideal situation.  When it faded into the historical, balmy tomes, I bowed out completely – I never was a perfume kind of girl, so the loss of the one I adored…singularly…was it for me.  

I was always acutely aware of life’s redolence, though, whether nature-created, or the man-made kind, filling precious glass bottles to the brim with pale, watery hues.  I still am keenly cognizant of them, though I’ve long given up purchasing any “Eau” for myself.

Still, I maintain a somewhat illimitable love of fragrance – the sense of smell is one that can (as aforementioned) move us quite deeply.  What do I wear in this case? Dragon’s Blood. Only. By a very specific brand, I should add… My red vials are sacred in their own way, as my olfactory has associated the liquid resin with parts of my being, and my Life.  It is fair to say, also, that it is MY scent – the oils and ph of our skin births a unique aroma all our own, no matter the formulation is the same.  (It might be why a fragrance you LOVE smells divine freshly uncanted…and also on a friend of yours…but perhaps not on you so much.)

Dragons Blood resin en.wikipedia.org

Dragons Blood resin en.wikipedia.org

I fell in love with Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab many moons ago – during what you might call a personal journey (from which was born profound self-discovery.)  The scent selection at the time was still rather substantial (though a meager cry from the current offerings!) and, what I loved most, highly uncommon.  I bought more imps that I could have counted – so many that I had to have a bead container labeled with the letters of the alphabet to sort them!

Another site, while I am at it, whose oils I have purchased (and happily burned to enchant the air!) is Dark Candles – another site for those in love with Samhain, or vampish, um, everything…!

In any case, I recently saw this post from Musingsofamuse and it – of course – caught my attention.  Best time of year and countless fragrances to seduce the senses (seasonally, or not!)

She posted about a brand I am unfamiliar with, Lathers & Lights – fair to say they are now on my radar. 🙂 The sheer plethora of scents – specifically allotted to October, and to Autumn itself – is MIND-blowing.  I desperately want to read through them all right now but my eyes are starting to feel strained just from typing for so long!  It really is amazing.

Musingsofamuse.com

Musingsofamuse.com

I’ll post a few screen shots below (not knowing whether they abandon ship later in the year) – it was rather a challenge to fit all of “HALLOWEEN” on my screen (huge it is!) but…I tried! You may not be able to make it out completely here, but just take in the size of the selection – if you are a lover of fragrance the way that I am (in an intensely, all-encompassing, sensorial way) and / or also enchanted by Halloween, it’s worth just knowing someone out there has an enormous offering for you.

Oh…and pumpkin scents?  There are over 30!

http://www.lathersnlights.com/scents.html (Did you notice this is only through part of the letter "C"?!)

http://www.lathersnlights.com/scents.html (Did you notice this is only through part of the letter “C”?!)

Vita Liberata Tan

I have to be honest, I am SO not sad that my wedding is during the Autumn!  And if it were during Spring or Summer, I’d steer (incredibly) clear of anything “tan” at all – self, or sun. I know a little bit of “color” can wake up the complexion, but over the years, the quest for a self-tanner that doesn’t turn you into a giant tangerine (along WITH your clothing!) has been littered with ones that DO.  The wedding gown can be spared!

That aside, the orange’d hue is often accompanied by the telltale, and frankly repugnant redolence of DHA (dihydroxyacetone.) Not a good look, and definitely no fun when your body heat turns up – dancing under hot lights caused a cocoon of the scent (cloying to me AND anyone in my remote proximity!)  Not to mention those rivulets of sweat making for fun, streaky skin…since the formula just couldn’t hang on.  

GROSS.

Well…Vita Liberata’s pHenomenal 2-3 Week Tan Mousse is one of those products that endeavors to eliminate those mishaps, to keep you golden and glowing…and fragrance-free! BudgetBeautyBlog posted a review a little while back – I liked it because she sports a pallor also, and beginning with fair skin can often lead to curious results.

Sephora photo

Sephora photo

Addressing the issue of lasting power – something many brands fail to conquer – the pHenomenal 2-3 Week Tan Mousse sticks around for two to three weeks.  BRILLIANT!  I could have saved a good amount of money NOT having to double self-tan for Ballroom competitions with this streak-free, hydrating, and non-scented mousse!  Per the description on Sephora: 

Research results after just 2 applications: 
– 80% agree pHenomenal tan lasts 15 days or longer 
– 100% agree that skin was silky soft after using pHenomenal
– 100% agree that they were comfortable enough to go straight out after applying pHenomenal
– 100% agree pHenomenal tan is quick and easy to apply
– 90% agree pHenomenal tan faded like a natural tan

Budgetbeautyblog photo

Budgetbeautyblog photo

I haven’t tried this myself as yet, but I feel like if I do have an event to attend – at which my ghostly white gams might be “too much” for the crowd – it might be worth a try.  Bronzed without consequence of skin damage?  Nice to have the option!

Revlon Love Is On

I think it has been a long time since Revlon has launched a major fragrance – I vaguely remember a few when I was in my later teens, I think!  Love Is On is a mix of Italian berry and sweet lemon, which the Company concludes is “loved by women, irresistible to men” (in the sense that the key notes can be unisex.)  You can see more details here.

mimifroufrou.com

mimifroufrou.com

Interestingly, the bottle does sort of look like a lip profile, but of course also the heart…separate halves, joined together.  

mimifroufrou.com

mimifroufrou.com

Along with the fragrance debut, there are two Love Series sets – one for the face, and one for lips.  The face kit will include a primer, a blush, and an eye brightener.  The lip kit includes two lipsticks, two lip liners, and two glosses.

Nest Candles

NEST candles are THE BEST.  And yes, they are worth the price tag.

I used to take trips into Takashimaya in NYC back in the day with my mother, and the first floor had a fresh “Floral Boutique” for flower arrangers, or anyone shopping for live “fashion” decor.  It was…DIVINE.  It smelled like fresh-cut EVERYTHING. It closed some years ago, much to my, and my mother’s chagrin, but I will never forget walking in there and being engulfed with the scent of roses, hyacinth, greenery… It took my breath away each and every time (making me take an ever deeper one to take it all in!) 

Nytimes.com photo

Nytimes.com photo

cafleurebon.com photo

cafleurebon.com photo

When I first smelled NEST’s “Bamboo” candle, I was immediately reminded of Takashimaya.  And, as is likely obvious, that is a beautify thing!  The scent is described as: “Flowering bamboo is mingled with a variety of white florals, sparkling citrus and fresh green accords.” I LOVE the smell of fresh flowers, and these candles are no joke – I couldn’t begin to enumerate the countless brands I’ve tried, but these take the cake.  

Save for Ralph Lauren’s Holiday candle (UH-MAZING), no one has beaten NEST in my book.  The quality of these candles is remarkable – they fill a large room without being overly cloying, and they last for a good amount of time. 

I love that NEST offers a wide array of scents, as well, and has a user-friendly search page to narrow down the relatively vast selection.  They also show you other products with the same fragrance below the product image to help you snag more of your favorite scent! 🙂

Screen Shot 2015-04-24 at 7.16.50 PM

nestfragrances.com photo

 

I absolutely love these candles…and whenever my mother gets one (or several) as a gift, I snatch them up as fast as I can, even though they weren’t for me. (Don’t worry, I always check with her first! 😉 )