This post brought to you by Revlon. All opinions are 100% mine.
When I think of Revlon, it takes me back to my childhood when I’d raid my mother’s makeup kit and pull out that bright red lipstick she wore everywhere (work, dinner, grocery shopping) to practice carefully putting it on my four-year-old self and then wiping it off, thinking she wouldn’t notice. It’s been a while since then – longer than I’d care to admit – but the feeling is still the same. There’s always that little bit of excitement when I walk by their makeup line, like we’re sharing some innocent little secret we both know she was aware of.
When Revlon recently offered up the chance to take part in their Expression Experiment Challenge, where they’re encouraging women to break out of their regular makeup routines and try out new, bolder colors, my inner child did a little happy dance. I received a kit containing their Colorstay nail polish and eye shadow, Photoready Eye Primer + Brightener and Perfecting Primer, a Cherry Tart Lip Butter, and that iconic Fire & Ice Lustrous Lipstick, all of which I managed to use during my recent staycation.
The results of the experiment are pictured below, but I have to confess I haven’t had this much fun playing with makeup since my toddler days. I mean, sure, I play with makeup regularly, but it’s not every day you get to paint your toes with blue nail polish for the sake of “science.”
I’m really glad I was given the chance to take this on. It pushed me out of my comfort zone, which is something I feel we women rarely do once we’ve figured out our makeup routine. I encourage you to take on the challenge yourself and post your own pics. I’d love to see what kinds of looks you come up with. Leave me a comment and let me know how it goes. Check out the Revlon Expression Experiment Facebook app for details on how to get started.
You know, I almost didn’t post this but then I realized there was no way I could omit a Sinbad photo op. I mean, come on – it’s Sinbad! Though this post is a bit of a mish-mash of random (but honestly, very fun) things we did over the course of our Miami staycation, these moments reminded us why we are pretty fortunate to live in this city (now and then and only when there’s decent parking involved).
We rediscovered Monty’s South Beach, a location that not only has spectacular views but also boasts a bar-side pool, so as not to interfere with simultaneous oyster-shooting and tanning. We also discovered that Chili’s is no place for anyone over 30 (that black light pic is the only good thing that came out of that venture – our stomachs are still very upset at us). And we made a pit-stop at some generic Chinese restaurant where we were comfortingly addressed in broken English by a woman who actually had perfectly coherent language skills when addressing her staff.
But let’s get back to Sinbad. I mean, what really needs to be said? If you grew up in the 90’s (and I hope I’m not one of the few), then you can probably share in my Different World inspired glee (I was always rooting for him and Jaleesa). But even now, the guy is still really funny and just plain nice. It was one of those adolescent tv-dreams-come-true — good enough to round out one heck of a staycation and justifying that two-drink minimum at the Improv.
P.S. I wonder where he gets his wardrobe…
In this post: Amorium Jewelry Purple Skull Ring, His & Hers Converse Chuck Taylors
The last time I visited The Forge, I could barely afford a glass of champagne and was really only there because a friend dragged me out. The WMC was going on and there were a lot of people whom I suspect were not only sipping champagne. Five years later, it’s probably still a stretch to make it a regular spot, but I’m a savvier shopper thanks to resources like Gilt City.
Thanks to my coupon-clipping ways I was able to surprise my husband during our staycation (yep – still debating that one) with a romantic dinner at the renovated Forge, one that looks nothing at all like that dark little eatery with the speakeasy that led to the club next door (you know the one). It’s polished, sexy, and refreshed, which can also be said for its food, prepared by Chef Dewey LoSasso. But what really made an impression was the enomatic wine bar, a new, interactive wine-by-the-glass self-serve feature truly designed for oenophiles and novices alike. Think of it as a soda fountain for grown-ups.
And if that doesn’t float your flute, then check out the 80’s inspired nudie wall mural in the ladies room. Or the mirror-backed chairs outside. Or even the sultry red lighting that’s more than adequately suitable for all sorts of Michael Jackson stage presence impressions (see MJ-impersonating husband below). You can try it all out for yourself during Miami Spice, beginning August 1st.
P.S. Please feel free to send in any MJ-impersonating husband pics. I like to think that I’m not alone.
In this post: Amorium Jewelry Hand Chain, Revlon Fire & Ice Lipstick, Dorothy Perkins Cream Blazer
Thanks to my Instagram addiction, I’ve discovered numerous little online shops crammed with items that are too friggin’ cute and are insistently urging a need to make their way into my already-too-full accessories bins. But it’s not like I plan to resist. Like I said – they’re too friggin’ cute.
One of said adorable shops is Love, Always, a boutique that not only purveys trendy items for an affordable price but does so with a moral conscience – 10% of all profits are donated to varying anti-bullying organizations. That makes them even harder to resist.
I’ve plucked out some of my favorites below. And because you’re all fabulous readers of Bubbles & Ink, Love, Always is giving you a special coupon code for 15% off your purchase. Just enter BUBBLES when prompted at checkout. So do a little shopping while you do a little good. Because there’s nothing cute at all about bullying.
Thanks to Love, Always for the use of these images from their Instagram feed (@lovealwayscouture).
Though the weather hasn’t been particularly beach-friendly over the past couple of weeks (particularly for MBFWS), Tony and I were lucky enough to enjoy some time in the sunshine during a mid-week staycation (I still question the validity of that word), which, in my opinion, is the best of its kind because there never seems to be better weather than when it’s Tuesday and you’re locked indoors.
This gloriously sunny day fell upon us by chance as we decided to leave our far-too-westward apartment on a gloomy morning and found that, indeed, there is always better weather upon entering Miami Beach.
And though you know I’m usually offensive to the point of snarky about Miami’s less-than-desirable traits (traffic on the 836, anyone?), days like this make me eat my words – this time at Big Pink, a sanguine corner diner everyone should visit after a dip in the ocean (if you can find parking within a three-mile radius).
More staycation (I know) updates coming up this week, complete with a trip to The Forge‘s enomatic wine bar for your voyeuristic pleasure. And be sure to hover over the pics for more info. You won’t want to skip that “jargarita” recipe. That’s one little mason jar full of sip-able bliss. Cheers!
In this post: L.A.M.B. Tote, Revlon Cherry Tart Lip Butter, Havaianas Flip Flops, Gypsy Warrior (sticker), Black & White Swimsuit
Don’t worry, you’re not on the wrong blog. I actually did bake – something I used to do quite often back when I worked in an office, though, admittedly, really only out of the box (did the minibar in the background give it away?). But you know how on Pinterest you save things to infinity and never actually do anything with them? Is that just me? Anyway, I decided to actually try out one of those recipes I’d been hoarding and the results were actually pretty great, if I do say so myself.
What you see here is my execution of Tidy Mom’s recipe re-pinned ad infitum, which I found here in its nth life. Basically, you follow the steps on the box but add an extra egg (two if you want it to be extra rich – I may have added five. I suspect one was a twin.). Replace the oil for melted butter and double the amount. Use milk instead of water and then mix well (I actually had to use a hand blender and a whisk because it was so rich). Then just follow the time on the box and wait for the cupcakes to completely cool before frosting. Don’t I sound just like a Stepford wife?
So yeah – there you have it. Semi-from-scratch cupcakes that give my pinning purpose. I think. Anyway, my husband loved them and so did his office buddies, so I’m pleased as punch. Let me know if you try making them. I’d love to know how other flavors and variations turn out.
I wish I was cool enough to deliver this post to you without having to admit to the perpetual sense of excitement I’ve been feeling since Friday. But the truth is that half the time I was in awe of the fact that I was seated directly behind Project Accessory designers Nina Cortes and Brian Burkhardt (my two favorites), and the other half of the time was spent wondering how I’d managed to get my name on the guest list for what I have affectionately dubbed as Project Runway heaven.
I’m embarrassed to admit I was a little starstruck. But it’s not very often that Miami gets to experience a CFDA-approved fashion week aimed at launching the careers of emerging (and seriously talented) designers — though we seem to have had our healthy share of events as of late. And though I’m always quite vocal about my often-confounded feelings about this city, there is a sense of pride for my hometown in knowing we not only hosted Style Week Resort but did it with ease and delivered what now seems like the obviously natural fit for this event.
Project Runway alumns Jonathan Joseph Peters and Janeane Marie delivered clean, chic, and quite wearable pieces, JJP with beautifully colored lace and JM with sleek, geometric style. Alessandra Gold offered up deliciously urban flair with a small crew ceremoniously break-dancing their way through the closing.
I’m still relishing in the buzz of fresh fashion and the possibility of such caliber events finding a permanent home in our backyard. But you can make up your own mind: Check out the styles for yourself by heading over to SoFlaNights.com’s recap page. Let me know what you think in the comments.
Nothing softens the blow of a Monday morning like the promise of free stuff. This week, I’d like to start by giving you all the opportunity to win the fabulous hand jewelry I’m wearing below, courtesy of Amorium Jewelry, a Miami-based company that sells hand-made items originating from Turkey. (You might have seen their other hot items, like the be-jeweled purple skull ring, on my Instagram feed.)
While some pieces can be found in six stores around the city (Essence Boutique and RikRak Brickell, to name a few), you don’t have to be a local to shop; most items can be found on their website and you can win by doing the following:
1) Like the Bubbles & Ink and Amorium Jewelry Facebook pages.
2) Visit the Amorium Jewelry website and leave a comment on this post telling me which piece you liked the best.
That’s it! Contest ends Friday, July 20, 2012 at 5:00 p.m. Eastern. Winner will be selected at random. Good luck!
UPDATE: Thanks to everyone who entered and CONGRATS to our winner, Yvette!
Thanks so much to Kate Sorensen of Coupon Cravings for guest-posting and helping us all find our way to a well-deserved massage without breaking the bank. I, for one, will certainly be heeding her advice. Enjoy!
Getting a massage is a good way to de-stress. Sometimes you just need a moment to yourself to relax and recuperate. But looking at the prices of most massages can put the stress right back into the process. It has long seemed that professional massages are a luxury reserved for the affluent. But this doesn’t have to be the case. There are ways to find professional massages at discounted prices that won’t raise your blood pressure. Here are three ideas for how to get a good massage for fairly cheap.
- Look online at Groupon for discounts. Groupon.com offers discounts of up to 80 percent on all different kinds of massages. Whether you’re looking for Swedish, shiatsu, or deep tissue massages, there’s a good chance you’ll find one on Groupon. On their website they explain that all their discount massages are from carefully-chosen, reputable businesses, so you can be sure your massage will take place in a clean and comfortable environment.
- Check out massage schools in your area. Students at most massage therapy schools are required to have a certain number of hours of hands-on experience. They usually have a student clinic where this takes place. They aren’t free, but the cost is much less expensive than your average massage. Check online at the school’s website for information about student massages, or, if you can’t find the information online, call the school and ask.
- Try one of the increasing number of no-frills massage boutiques. Because of its popularity, massage parlors are popping up all over the place. Arthritis Today explains that now there are a number of new franchises that cater to those of more modest means. They offer 60 minute massages for around $40. This is an exceptional bargain for a good massage. The savings is due to the fact that these boutiques don’t spend as much time or money on the atmosphere and extras you’ll get at a spa. But the massage itself can be just as good, and that’s what you really want to spend your money on. Here are a few of these massage boutiques: Massage Envy, Massage Heights, LaVida Massage, and Zen Massage.
If you find yourself dealing with a lot of tension and stress, a massage might be just what you need to unwind. You may have always felt that this is a luxury you simply can’t afford. However, if you’re willing to look for deals, or get a massage in a no-frills environment, you can find your way to a soothing, relaxing and inexpensive massage.