Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Lisa Hoffman Madagascar Orchid Eau de Parfum review

          In a grade school African studies class, I remember being assigned to report on Madagascar (for the record, this was before the cartoon movie). Madagascar has a devastatingly beautiful array of flora and fauna, often found nowhere else in the world. In fact, 90% of those species are endemic. There are roughly one thousand different orchid species in Madagascar, the majority of which are only found in that ecosystem! Sadly, the orchids alongside much of the other flora and fauna hang in precarious balance due to human destruction.

           Lisa Hoffman Madagascar Orchid is a perfumer's attempt to capture the essence of the Star of Madagascar Orchid. Though it was previously thought to be scentless, it was found to emit a perfume just before the break of dawn. Perfumers actually floated above the tropical canopies in a blimp to capture the essence of this ephemeral fragrance without destroying a single petal!

          Lisa Hoffman Madagascar Orchid Eau de Parfum is described as 'A modern bouquet of Sheer Jasmine, Ylang Dew, Mimosa Mood & Pink Peony perfectly fram the exotic, unforgettable aroma of Madagascar Orchid.' To me, Madagascar is a modern floral bouquet leaning a hint exotic thanks to the orchid. This scent would be great for pure floral lovers; it's not a fruity at all. Madagascar Orchid has a more uplifting scent when compared to weighty florals like rose or gardenia. However, I wouldn't describe it as a 'light' scent. I think if you like florals like lilac or iris, you would be a fan. There is a hint of sweetness, almost like vanilla. Jasmine and Ylang Ylang lightly smooth out the base. Since Lisa Hoffman is not yet readily available on counters, I thought it would be useful to make an everyday comparison. The closest thing I can think of is the beautiful French scent of my Clarins hand lotion. I've noticed that a couple online reviews compared the scent of Madagascar Orchid to soap. Perhaps it does, though it would have to be quite a luxurious soap.

         Overall, Lisa Hoffman Madagascar Orchid is a fresh and beautiful exotic floral. One can see how this would be an award winning scent. Though you may be familiar with the popular jewelry form of Lisa Hoffman scents, the Eau de Parfum is new and can be found online at Lisa Hoffman or on HSN for $65 for 2 oz. Thanks for reading! Do you have a favorite Lisa Hoffman scent? Have you tried any other orchid scents? What kind of florals do you like?

Love, Dovey.

Disclosure: This post contains product(s) sent to Cute and Mundane for consideration by PR. The ideas and opinions in this post are genuine and my own.  

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Lisa Hoffman Tuscan Fig Eau de Parfum review

             The fig, with its easily ripened soft teardrop shape and pink flesh, epitomizes a summer fruit. Every summer I look forward to when small crates of figs appear on market shelves. Recently, I've been wearing Lisa Hoffman Tuscan Fig Eau de Parfum. (You might recognize Lisa Hoffman from her buzzed about scented jewelry line). Tuscan Fig is a bottle of perfume that's mellow and sweet, much like its namesake fig.

          Lisa Hoffman Tuscan Fig's description states 'Surrounded by Vanilla Bean, Honeysuckle, Coconut Wood, and Gardenia, Tuscan Fig entices you with its warm essence.'

         Overall, I would describe this as a sweet, smooth, and warm gourmand type scent. I can see how the sweet mellowness of the fig is the inspiration here. There are no sparkling or floral top notes; most of the scent is focused on the mid or base note range. The vanilla is quite prominent for me, which I love. It adds a touch of relaxed femininity. I think the coconut wood and gardenia are woven into the scent, however neither wood nor floral are overly prominent. There are no spicy notes here. Since Lisa Hoffman isn't readily available on counters, I think it would be helpful to draw comparisons from everyday scents. If you're familiar with Bath and Body Works, I would say this would be somewhat similar to 'Warm Vanilla Sugar' and 'Rice Flower and Shea.' From my experience with Lisa Hoffman Tuscan Fig and another scent (to be reviewed soon!), her scents tend to be more spa-like or zen. They are pretty with unexpected elements, however they aren't the kind of scent that takes your nose on an olfactory roller coaster. I can see them working for a range of people.

          Overall, I'm a fan and have been spritzing myself with Lisa Hoffman Tuscan Fig quite often this week. The fig and vanilla sweetness is a nice touch at the ripest point in summer, when I want a break from my usual florals. I think this would carry nicely into winter as well when I'm looking for warmer gourmand scents to provide some coziness from the cold. Lisa Hoffman's Eau de Parfums are new additions to her line and can be found at Lisa Hoffman online or HSN at $65 for 2 oz. Thank for reading! Are you familiar with Lisa Hoffman's fragrance lines? What are your favorite warm scents? Do you look forward to figs in the summer too?

Love,  Dovey.

P.S. Figs shown in this post were promptly sprinkled with sugar, baked, and eaten post-photograph!

Disclosure: This post contains product(s) sent to Cute and Mundane for consideration by PR. The ideas and opinions in this post are genuine and my own. 

Saturday, July 28, 2012

NARS Storm Bird nail polish review + swatches

           NARS Storm Bird nail polish is swooping onto counters this Fall 2012. With a name like Storm Bird, one can imagine the shadowed wingspan of a seabird riding the gusts of a storm. It's really nice imagery for a grey polish.

         The formula of NARS Storm Bird seems to be consistent with NARS cream nail polishes. It's smooth and pigmented. Depending on how much you pick up with the brush, the color becomes opaque in 1-2 coats. The brush is attached to the large square head which seems unwieldy, but works fine for me. The brush is rounded and not paddle shaped.
         NARS Storm Bird nail polish is a medium grey creme. It's a balanced neutral, though it may lean ever so slightly blue. Grey is not a particularly new color; if you remember last fall NARS released the dark grey-blue nail polish NARS Galion. NARS Galion is significantly more blue and darker than NARS Storm Bird. I believe Deborah Lippman Stormy Weather is darker than NARS Storm Bird.

           I'm glad I held out on last year's dark greys and went for NARS Storm Bird nail polish this season. I like how it's close to neutral, and is a mid-tone grey. I prefer this to greys that are too dark or too light. Although NARS Storm Bird seems like a color more suited towards fall, I've already made good use of it this week as a pedi. The slight blue tones look nice when paired with nude sandals and dark skinny jeans. Thanks for reading! Have you picked up anything from NARS Fall 2012? What's your favorite grey polish?

Love, Dovey.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Beauty Tip 2: Travel with a LUSH Bath Bomb

         Recently I had the most brilliant idea while traveling. Why not pack a LUSH Bath Bomb? They're non-liquid for airport travel, plus it disappears after one use, so you only have to carry it one way. They make your bag smell good too. With one little bomb, you can create a fragrant personal spa within the confines of your hotel room. Baths are such a great way to unwind after a stressful day of traveling and make it easier to sleep in an unfamiliar bed.

          LUSH Avobath was my bath bomb of choice last time around. It's peppy and relaxing with its combination of Avocado and lemongrass. My Avobath (seen above) is slightly smaller than the full size ones they sell in-store because its from one of the holiday tins containing multiple bombs. It's more budget friendly to buy them that way, plus hotel tubs tend to be small anyway.

View from hotel window in the Ace Hotel, NYC.
           In addition to that bath bomb, I also brought my tub of Mask of Magnaminty to help clear a stressed out complexion. It could be said that I'm not a light traveler. What do you do trying to create a little spa time while traveling? Have you ever tried taking a bath bomb with you? (What are your favorites?)

Love, Dovey.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

NARS Undress Me Multiple review + swatches

        A Sugar Plum fairy dances across the crystalline stage of my imagination as I contemplate the NARS Undress Me Multiple, a whimsical offering from the NARS Fall 2012 collection. What can I say? It's easy to get whisked away to the Land of the Sweets when one is presented with a ballet slipper pink sprinkled with silver dust.

         I haven't made a secret of my love for NARS Multiples (see here). NARS Multiples have a beautifully smooth texture that glides on. It's one of the best cream textures out there. The color lasts for a few hours and will needs to be reapplied. The packaging, however is well suited for reapplication, as it is a stick form that can easily be thrown in a bag for touch ups. The more I use them, the more I ascribe to the idea that multiples can be use all over the face. After applying to cheeks or as a highlight, I'll swipe a bit on my nose and other areas of my face to subtly unify the look. This  goes for almost all the colors, as they can be applied in an imperceptibly sheer fashion. Multiples are also a nice alternative to those like me who tend to break out when using NARS powder blushes.

NARS Undress Me Ingredients: Polymethyl Methacrylate, Triethylhexanoin, Dimethicone, Hydrogenated Poly(C6-14 Olefin), Cetyl Ethylhexanoate, Cera Microcristallina (Microcrystalline wax), Alcium Sodium Borosilicate, Sorbitan Sesquiisostearate, Polyethylene, Candelilla Cera (Euphorbia Cerifera (Candelilla) Wax, C10-30 Cholesterol/Lanosterol Esters, Sodium Magnesium Silicate, Sodium Hyaluronate, Tocopherol, Tin Oxide, Euterpe Oleracea (Euterpe Oleracea Fruit Oil), Simethicone, Linseed Oil / Palm Oil Aminopropnaedio Esters, Aqua (Water), Silica, Glycerin, [(+/-) May contain Mica, Cl77891 (Titanium Dioxide), Cl77491 (Iron Oxides), Cl77492 (Iron Oxides), Cl77499 (Iron Oxides), Cl75470 (Carmine), Cl77163 (Bismuth Oxychloride), Cl77742 (Manganese Violet).]

          NARS Undress Me Multiple is a demure ballerina pink (or perhaps negligee pink as the name might suggest) with silver glitter. It belongs to the family of multiples without sheen. Any shine can be attributed to the visible silver glitter. NARS Orgasm Multiple is a peachy pink with golden sheen. You can see how Undress Me lacks that same sheen, and instead has larger pieces of glitter mixed in. NARS Luxor Multiple (reviewed here) is a pale highlighter with a pale pink iridescence. You can see how much darker and blush-like NARS Undress Me Multiple is.

         When worn the color of NARS Undress me multiple is very subtle, especially on my currently tan skin. I bet it will only look better as my color fades into fall. I love understated colors like this. The glitter is noticeable, and fades more slowly than the color. I'm hesitant about wearing glitter, however I think this can work because the base color is subtle and doesn't compete for attention. (That said, an interview and professional work environment might not be the best places to whip this one out). Worn well with subtle or smoky mattes, NARS Undress Me multiple could provide just the right hint of intrigue. While NARS Undress Me Multiple might not be a collection builder, it is a sweet and whimsical piece that lifts my imagination à la grand jeté!

        Thanks for reading! What are your favorite items or lemmings from NARS Fall? What are your must-have multiples? Is glitter a do or don't in high end cosmetics?

Love, Dovey

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Beauty Tip 1: Keep your nail polish bottles clean

          Recently, I sat down and cleaned the forty plus rims of my OPI, Sephora by OPI, and Essie nail polish bottles. When nail polish accumulates on the rims of bottles, the bottle can't close as tightly or evenly. More air enters your bottle which eventually leads to the polish inside drying out faster. You can extend the life of your polish collection by keeping the rims clean when applying the polish and by periodically cleaning the bottle itself with acetone. I'd suggest using paper towels instead of cottonballs or rounds. The cotton fibers tend to get stuck everywhere (yep, I found out the hard way). 

          Cleaning my collection also helped me rediscover some colors I forgot I had, and reminded me to be a bit more reductionista (borrowing that term from Liz) in my ways. But, there's still a little room for the Lippmanns that I've been eyeing, right? Which reminds me, I still have all my luxury and drugstore polishes left to clean. Sigh. Have you performed any polish stash maintenance recently? Do you have any tips for nail polish or makeup stash maintenance?

Love, Dovey.

Laura Geller Cake Eyeliner duo review + GIVEAWAY!

         It's Laura Geller Makeup's 10th birthday and I'm celebrating with some baked cake. Baked cake eyeliner, that is! Much like actual cake, Laura Geller Cake eyeliner starts as a swirl of liquid product. It's poured onto terra cotta pans and baked for 24 hours. The result is a beautiful fine powder product with individualized quirks.

          In the spirit of cake, Laura Geller Cake eyeliners have delicious foodie names. Plus, they come in duo form, so you can enjoy two coordinating 'flavors' in one product. Today I have Plum Pudding / Black Forest, Creme Brulee / Dutch Chocolate, and Unearthed / Dutch Chocolate to share with you. They can be layered and used either wet or dry. I've shown dry swatches below. Plus, they come in duo form, so you can enjoy two coordinating 'flavors' in one product. Plum Pudding / Black Forest is a gorgeous metallic red plum alongside a glittery black. It's my personal favorite. Creme Brulee / Dutch Chocolate is a burnished coppery color (much like the burnt parts of Creme Brulee dessert) alongside a mostly matte chocolate brown. Unearthed / Dutch Chocolate is actually an eyeshadow combined with a cake eyeliner. Unearthed is a golden beige sheen and Dutch Chocolate is a chocolate brown.

           I've dreamed up a one-of-a-kind giveaway for Cute and Mundane readers to celebrate Laura Geller Makeup's 10th birthday! No birthday is complete without cake, so I'll be giving away two Laura Geller Cake Eyeliner duos (Est. Retail Value: $46-49) to one lucky Cute and Mundane reader . The winner can choose their two favorite duos from the ones featured in this post. (They will be brand new, not the ones used in this review.) Good Luck!

Contest RulesTo enter, use the Rafflecopter widget below. The folks at Laura Geller can only send to U.S. addresses. So make sure you (or someone you know) has one. I will randomly pick one winner from the valid entries and notify them via the email address provided. The winner has 72 hours to respond; if I do not get a response within that time frame, the winner will forfeit the prize and I will choose a new winner. The winner's address will be forwarded to the sponsor, who has agreed to ship and provide the prize for this contest.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Good Luck!

Love, Dovey.
P.S. If you're a fan of Laura Geller makeup , be sure to check out her website this month; they're offering a 10% off site wide!
 Disclosure: This post contains product(s) sent to Cute and Mundane for consideration by PR. The ideas and opinions in this post are genuine and my own. 

Saturday, July 21, 2012

LUSH Emotional Brilliance Review + Swatches (Glamorous, Strong, and Vibrance)

          Today we witness a color explosion as the LUSH Emotional Brilliance cosmetic collection goes live. The idea behind Emotional Brilliance is to choose colors that reflect your state of mind. You've seen previews of the color wheel (see my post here). To recap, the idea is  to spin the wheel and as it slows to a stop, pick the first three colors that stand out to you at the moment. The colors and order you pick them in reveal your current state of mind. The first color symbolizes your Strength or Weakness. The second symbolizes your Subconscious Need. The third symbolizes your Talent, and it is what you require to realize your subconscious need. The three colors I picked were Glamorous, Strong, and Vibrance. Today I have a review and swatches of these colors from the LUSH Emotional Brilliance line!

         Glamorous, Strong, and Vibrance are all Liquid Lips products ($22.95 each). They're housed in glass vials with medicine dropper lids. The pharmacy feel makes it seem like these are you individualized 'color prescriptions'! In addition to having an emotion based color name, each color has a little extra adage on the inside of the tag. Glamorous reads 'You can do it', Strong reads 'Always', and Vibrance reads 'Full of life.' Although the lid is in a dropper shape, you will find an easy to use doe-footed wand (see below) on the inside. Overall I like the packaging. These look really cute on my vanity and I like products that can stand on their own (it's space saving). I did encounter one issue though. The head of one wand somehow fell off as I was pulling it out of the vial. I pulled it out of the vial with my Tweezermans, stuck it back on the wand and all seems to be well. I'm not sure if this was a common or freak encounter. I've listed the ingredients from each label below. The principal ingredient seems to be Jojoba oil, which I'm pleased to see. The list is also uncommonly short for a makeup product, which is great.

Ingredients: Glamorous: Jojoba Oil (Simmondsia chinensis), Candelila Wax (Euphorbia cerifera), Titanium Dioxide, Rose Wax (Rosa damascena), Tin oxide, Cl45410, Cl77019 Strong: Jojoba Oil (Simmondsia chinensis), Candelila Wax (Euphorbia cerifera), Rose Wax (Rosa damascena), Cl45380, Cl12085, Cl19140, Cl15985, Cl73360 Vibrance: Jojoba Oil (Simmondsia chinensis), Candelila Wax (Euphorbia cerifera), Mica, Rose Wax (Rosa damascena), Titanium Dioxide, Synthetic Fluorphlogopite, Cl15985

         The colors in the LUSH Emotional Brilliance are elemental and quite pure. By that I mean, they are a selection of basic and season-less colors, which is the point of the collection. It reminds me of lines like MAKE UP FOR EVER which treats color the way an artist would. You can see the swatches of my colors below. Glamorous is a cool barbie pink. Strong is a red-orange. (I love this color!) Vibrance is a tangerine with shimmer. The colors are quite pigmented and mostly opaque, depending on how much you apply. I don't find these colors to be very staining; they can be mostly wiped off if need be. The brighter colors do require a little finesse in application, as is typical with wand formats. The texture is a bit unique. It's not at all like a gooey sticky gloss. It's more like a lip cream. If you've tried NYX Xtreme lip creams, they're somewhat similar in texture. They go on smoothly and feel so comfortable and moisturizing when worn. I think that's the Jojoba oil coming into play.

       Overall, I consider LUSH Emotional Brilliance to be a unique and fun line of color.  For me personally, emotion and color are so enmeshed that I'm happy to see someone come up with a line based around that! The line does carry a luxury price tag, which I did ponder for some time. These medicine jars are the antithesis of fancy logo written lipstick bullets. Similarly, I think the idea behind the product is in inherently different.  Most importantly, it has a short ingredient list, which is important if you consider that we pretty much eat our lipstick. It's a great way to try to go more natural with your cosmetics without sacrificing bold color. This would also be great for parents concerned about their child's exposure to chemical cosmetics. Plus, the formula is quite pigmented and comfortable to boot. Overall, I'd say this is worth a try next time you head to your local LUSH. Or, if you don't have a LUSH nearby, you can spin the online version of the color wheel. Let me know what colors you choose!

Love, Dovey.

P.S. The bright crochet is my mom's handiwork. My teapot is sitting on top of it as I type :)

Disclosure: This post contains product(s) sent to Cute and Mundane for consideration by PR. The ideas and opinions in this post are genuine and my own.

NARS Liberte (....Fraternite Egalite!), a blush review

          While NARS Fall 2012 starts trickling in, I thought I would give one last hurrah for NARS Liberté blush. I'd been eyeing this striking burnished orange blush ever since it first came out in the NARS Summer 2012 collection. I almost feel as if it is a matching piece for my NARS eyeshadow trio in Ramatuelle (reviewed here).

          When hearing NARS Liberte, one can't help but resurrect "Liberté, Égalité, Fraternité" (Liberty, Equality, Fraternity), the tripartite French motto with origins in the French revolution. LIberty is personified in Eugène Delacroix's painting 'La Liberté Guidant Le Peuple' (Liberty Leading the People, read more about it here). I like to indulge in a little imagination and imagine that NARS Liberte is the color of well worn flag red.

Public Domain Image from Wiki

          NARS Liberte blush  is a pigmented matte burnished orange. When compared with the crayon orange swatch of MAC Optimistic Orange Cremeblend blush, you can see that NARS Liberte is considerably more terracotta and less juicy in character. I've compared Liberte to NARS Deep Throat. You can see how much more dramatic it is when compared to the delicate pinky peach of Deep Throat.

         Oranges made quite an impact this summer, and I can see a color like NARS Liberte being able to drift well into pumpkin season. I'm happy to finally have this in my collection. Thanks for reading! Do you have any favorite orange blushes in your collection? Did you have a chance to try NARS Ramatuelle this summer 2012? Which products are you looking forward to in the Fall 2012 collection?

Love, Dovey.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Living Proof Restore Revitalizing Spray review

          It's summer and we've got our skin slathered in sunscreen from head to toe, but what about our hair? Add in some styling with hot tools on top of that UV damage, and we've got ourselves some crispy locks. Not good. Enter Living Proof Restoring Revitalizing Spray. For those unfamiliar with the company, Living Proof is the brainchild of Harvard and MIT scientists. Science + beauty? Yes, please. (Living Proof 'Full' volumizing products are already mainstays in my collection).

          So what exactly is a 'Restoring Revitalizing Spray'? It's a lightweight spray that protects hair from heat and UV damage (think sun and hot tools). Living Proof Restoring Revitalizing Spray lacks the heaviness and oiliness of traditional hair oils and creams. It's key ingredient for hair protection is a polyfluoroester, a moisture controlling molecule that helps reduce surface friction and other stressors that lead to breakage. Living Proof Restoring Revitalizing spray can be used on both wet or dry hair for heat and UV protection.  When I sprayed my hair with the Living Proof Revitalizing Spray, it hit my hair, evaporated, and nothing appeared different. At first, I was perplexed, but then I realized that was the point. This is not a 'styling' product like a mousse or hairspray. It is a protecting product. You don't want it to change your hairstyle! This spray is so lightweight, non-sticky, and non-oily that you can't even feel it there. While there was no immediate textural difference, I did notice a difference when I used a curling iron on treated hair. The ends of my hair felt smoother, shinier, and less dry at the fragile ends. Win!

           I'll definitely be spraying the ends of my hair with Living Proof Restoring Revitalizing Spray anytime I plan on using hot tools or heading to the beach. It's another Living Proof win in my book. If lightweight heat + UV protection sounds like your cup of tea, you can find Living Proof Restore Revitalizing Spray ($26 for 5.5oz) at retailers like Sephora, Ulta, and Nordstrom, or LivingProof.com (always free shipping). Thanks for reading! Have you tried Living Proof before? What are your favorite heat protection products for hair?

Love, Dovey.

 Disclosure: This post contains product(s) sent to Cute and Mundane for consideration by PR. The ideas and opinions in this post are genuine and my own.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Guerlain Terracotta Sun in the City review

          Guerlain Terracotta Sun in the City is the El Dorado or golden grail of highlighters. Limited edition makeup doesn't get more luxurious than this. A raised Guerlain logo sits atop a three dimensional undulating woven imprint layer. Unlike the bronzers of Guerlain Terracotta years past, Sun in the City is a golden highlighter. Sunny golds have been popular this season and my makeup tends to be a bit gold-anemic. The addition of Guerlain Sun in the City certainly ups the karats in my collection!

          Guerlain Sun in the City comes in a larger than palm sized disc with 15g/.52oz of product. The amount of product is generous, possibly because it's meant to be used for both face and decollete. It's described on the packaging as a 'Golden Glimmer Powder' that is like a "A Sweep of Sunlight". The product is made in Italy.

          Even Baby Bird (above) took a moment to appreciate the luxurious packaging.

         As you can see from the swatch below, Guerlain Sun in the City is a smooth, pigmented, and beautiful gold. I feared disturbing the pattern with my brush, however it seems as if it will hold its integrity even up against a good bit of use.

        Overall,  Guerlain Sun in the City is a gorgeous addition to my collection. It's well made and has enough product to last a lifetime of sunny looks! Did you pick up anything from Guerlain Terracotta this year? Do you have any favorites from years past?

Love, Dovey.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Kiehl's new Aromatic Blends - Fig Leaf & Sage review

            I had a Ratatouille moment when experiencing Kiehl's new Aromatic Blends fragrance in Fig Leaf & Sage. You know, the moment in the movie when top food critic Anton Ego takes a bit of Remy's ratatouille and is immediately whisked back to his provincial childhood? My skeptical nose took one whiff of Fig Leaf and Sage and I was transported to the countryside.
           Fig Leaf & Sage is one of four scents in Kiehl's new Aromatic Blends line (the other three being Orange Flower & Lychee, Vanilla & Cedarwood, and Nashi Blossom & Pink Grapefruit). All the scents are naturally inspired and focus on sustainable sourcing. Today I have a review of the Fig Leaf & Sage line, which includes a Fragrance, Hand & Body Lotion and Liquid Body Cleanser.

          The Fig Leaf & Sage Fragrance ($75 for 3.4mL) is as refreshing as I described above. I was quite startled at how strongly it evoked a place. Scent memory is quite strong, and my memories from a childhood in the countryside distinctly resurfaced.  Fig Leaf & Sage really combined the watery crispness of leaves (think Caudalie's Beauty Elixir) with the depth of green herbs basking in the sun. The scent is unisex, as it is lacking in the deep woods and spices of men fragrances and the florals found in women's fragrances. It was really quite different from any other scent on a shelf, which I think is the point. Kiehl's is going for unexpected nature here. The fragrance is packaged in an old fashioned glass bottle, which I find to be very simple chic. The scent lingers for quite a while. The lasting power of the herbs are much better than crisp grassy greens that tend to be ephemeral in nature. As Fig Leaf & Sage is a 'place' type scent, I found that in addition to a personal fragrance, it makes for a nice pillow mist that hopefully can transport you to Provence, if only in dreams.

          I also had the chance to try Kiehl's Fig Leaf & Sage Hand & Body Lotion and Liquid Body Cleanser. Both products were well scented and smelled just like the fragrance. Both body lotion and body cleanser are packaged in plastic bottles with botanical and informational appearing labels, which is a nice touch. The body cleanser made a nice lather while while preserving a gentle and not too drying feel. The lotion had just the right moisturizing feel. It sank in quickly, but not too quickly. At $26 and $24 respectively, the Kiehl's Fig Leaf & Sage Hand & Body Lotion and Liquid Body Cleanser command a luxury price tag, but do deliver on quality.

        As I mentioned above, Kiehl's Aromatic Blends are available in four different scents. I've provided the official descriptions below:

Orange Flower &Lychee - "The Orange Flower and Lychee recreates the atmosphere of late afternoon in a Moroccan garden. The Orange Tree absorbs the warmth of the sun during the day then exudes its strong distinctive essences as the air begins to cool in the evening, while the lychee lends a soft and sweet aroma reminiscent of the roses growing nearby."

Vanilla & Cedarwood - The Vanilla & Cedarwood scent is a delicate balance of ying & yang, one part feminine from the Uganda Vanilla, smooth, smoky and just slightly sweet; one part masculine from the Virginia Cedarwood, raw and earthy. Together they blend to form a fragrance that is dynamically simple and irresistably universal." 

Nashi Blossom & Pink Grapefruit - The Nashi Blossom is too fragile to undergo any form of processing. We used a unique extraction technology with a more durable ingredient, ginger, whose aromas helped to strengthen the reproduction of the Nashi Blossom, making it an absolutely pure interpretation of the bloom." 

Fig Leaf & Sage - The Fig Leaf & Sage unique scent is best described as spring in Provence, reminiscent of the French countryside. The scent expression is not merely that of a fig, but is a combination of the scent of the air beneath the fig trees and the delicate aromas of herbs in the surrounding fields."

              Kiehl's Fig Leaf & Sage was literally and off-the-beaten road scent from nature. I certainly recommend taking a whiff the next time you're near a Kiehl's boutique. I'm quite curious about the rest, myself. I think Nashi Blossom & Pink Grapefruit sounds like something I need to check out! Thanks for reading! Have you experienced Kiehl's Aromatic Blends line yet? Which of the four scents above appeals to you most?

Love, Dovey.

P.S. The herbs in this post are from my friend's mom's absolutely amazing garden!

 Disclosure: This post contains product(s) sent to Cute and Mundane for consideration by PR. The ideas and opinions in this post are genuine and my own. 

Testing, one two three...

          Here's a look at what  I'm testing out and working on for Cute and Mundane this week. (Do you recognize any of them?) I hope your week is off to a beautiful start!

Love, Dovey.

Sunday, July 15, 2012


          After swatching to our hearts content in the NARS 413 Bleecker NYC flagship  store (read about it here), Ponyo and I took a skip, hop, and a jump down the street to the MARC JACOBS boutique and BOOKMARC (Marc Jacobs's bookstore). Above, you can see the boutique storefront. The boutique certainly has a youthful feel and is filled with color. I was particularly entranced by all the bracelets, and must have tried on nearly all the bracelets in the store.

          We were there for too brief a time to do serious shopping, however I did pick up the cutest heart shaped MARC JACOBS mirrors as gifts. They're sold in both the boutique and BOOKMARC.

         Marc Jacobs' fragrances were of course on display as well. Marc Jacobs Daisy Eau So Fresh is the epitome of my favorite everyday scents. It's a fresh fruity floral that's easy to wear. I like it much better than the original Daisy, which I'm not that fond of. To be honest though, Daisy Eau so Fresh not a terribly original scent. The large sized bottle had the prettiest white, pink, and pale yellow plastic flowers attached. Marc Jacobs Oh, Lola! is spinoff of the original Lola fragrance. I didn't like Lola, but I do like Oh Lola. It's fruity and a bit more unique than Daisy Eau so Fresh.

         Here's a picture of the BOOKMARC storefront. BOOKMARC is a small corner bookstore. It had a selection of artsy books in addition to a large selection of Marc Jacobs iPad/laptop cases (see mine here) and small BOOKMARC souvenirs. There was the most bizarre eye sculpture hanging from the top of the store. The crazy part is that the eye blinks!

         Thanks for reading! Have you been to these Bleecker St. boutiques? Do you like Marc Jacobs perfumes, apparel, or accessories?

Love, Dovey.