Sunday, January 17, 2010

Pineapple Polish for Spring

I'm kind of convinced that the only color that I'm going to want to wear on my nails this spring will be a pale yellow with plenty of white in it to render it wearable and chic. There's something so delicate and subtle about the Rescue shade "Square Pants" that reminds me of whipped lemon-chiffon pie. It will look perfect with all the diaphanous fabrics of the season.

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World's Worst Housewife

I can't cook (though I do love watching Barefoot Contessa on the Food Network), I hate to clean, and I don't own an ironing board. I think that it's safe to assume that I will never even approximate Donna Reed or Carol Brady. However, I absolutely despise wrinkled clothing, so when I saw an infomercial for the "Mister Steamy" today during a commercial break from Jersey Shore, I realized that I've found the perfect present to give myself on Valentine's Day. Mister Steamy is a bright yellow spiky ball that resembles a Medieval torture device, and when you put it in the dryer it supposedly fluffs and de-wrinkles your garments. Maybe people will even think that I actually own an iron!!

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Sunday, January 10, 2010

Nineteenth-Century Flower Girl

I went to the American Lives exhibition at the Met today, which included one of my favorite nineteenth-century genre paintings entitled The Flower Girl by Charles Cromwell Ingham. The flowers that spills out of the girl's basket are rendered with such intense and vibrant hues and delicate brushwork that they appear nearly life-like, as though one could bend down and smell the cheerful bouquet. On a related note, I decided after the exhibition that I needed to fulfill my unrequited floral olfactory need with a stop at the new Madison Avenue boutique of renowned French parfumer Frederic Malle. The shop is refined (60's modern) in an elegant Parisian manner that manages to remain entirely unpretentious, and the staff is gracious, knowledgeable, and has a playful attitude towards scent that is quite inspiring. After smelling glass bell jars perfumed with a variety of luxurious florals, I settled on the 1er Mai candle (housed in fire-engine-red glass) that smells exactly like lily of the valley. There is something about the scent of fresh flowers that is so appealing and really changes one's whole mood, and there's honestly nothing more romantic.

photo credit: Charles Cromwell Ingham, The Flower Girl, 1846. oil on canvas.

A Conditioner Fit For Rapunzel

When I was 5 years old I had the most beautiful ringlets that my mother would adorn with large silk bows. Years of damage and heat-styling have taken a toll on the texture of my hair to the point that it became straight and kind of limp. Since I now have very long hair for the first time since I was five years old, I'm beginning to realize that I need to resort to drastic measures if I want my hair to bear any kind of resemblance to its former glory. Santa Maria Novella's Honey Intensive Cream is the only conditioner that gives me beautiful youthful hair without split ends. I haven't even had to trim my hair in 6 months (it's that good). My mother tried it, and it changed the texture of her hair as well (from coarse and frizzy to smooth and sleek). If you really want your hair to feel like velvety Rapunzel locks, shampoo with Vanilla Silk Shampoo from Organix (get it at your local drugstore), then leave in the Honey Cream for twenty minutes before rinsing (doing the final rinse under cold water), and be the heroine in your very own beauty fairytale.

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