Love it // Caru Skincare Co. Chamomile Skin Rescue Kit

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Caru Skin Care Co. Chamomile Skin Rescue Kit

Is there anyone out there whose skin doesn’t dry up when the temperature drops? As soon as winter hits, my face gets super tight. Not in a good, newly lasered sort of way. No. It’s more of a don’t make me smile or I will crack open and bleed to death kind of thing.

So, when I discovered Caru Skincare Co, I was rather joyful to find the Chamomile Skin Rescue Kit. Ahhh, the soothing balm that is anything chamomile. Jojoba oil is magical for dry skin, and just the thought of rubbing some on to my soon-to-be winter weary skin gives me hope for the next couple of months.

I’ll be honest. You could put hydrogen peroxide in this beautiful packaging and I’d probably put it on my dry face. I’m such a sucker for a pretty label. The soaps are wrapped in biodegradable handmade paper that is embedded with seeds. You can plant the label when you are done admiring it, and grow flowers out of it. Ingenious!

Love it // Herbivore Botanicals Spa Gift Set

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Herbivore Botanicals - Spa Gift SetI admit, I was initially drawn to Herbivore Botanicals on the strength of their package design. It totally speaks to a certain aesthetic, and I love it! I’ve been struggling in the self-care department lately. I could really use a night to myself, locked in the bathroom with this Spa Gift Set, a bottle of wine and a carefully curated playlist to help me unwind. Of course, they offer a myriad of other amazing products, available for individual sale, and in lovely gift sets like these. Treat yo’self!

Love it // L:A Bruket Handcréme

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L:A Bruket HandcrémeI’m going a little nutty over this Swedish line of handmade, organic, botanical products. L:A Bruket‘s lotions, crémes, soaps and other amazing products are made with the finest ingredients and the greatest care. Their packaging is rustic, yet modern. I love anything that looks like it came from an old apothecary. This handcréme is rich with Sage, Rosemary and Lavender, in a shea butter base. Perfect for these cold, dry hands of mine. Every purse should have a tube of this in it this winter!

Marc Jacobs Beauty / Enamored Hi-Shine Lacquer

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Marc Jacobs Beauty - Enamored Hi-Shine Lacquer in PetraFor years, I have been an Essie devotee. I rarely bother trying anything else any more. I have the odd Chanel or O.P.I. polish that I’ve picked up because the shade was just right, but I always come back to Essie. The range of colour is phenomenal, it’s the right price, and it seems to be a little hardier than anything else.

Well, times they are a-changing, honey. I was checking out the new Marc Jacobs Beauty collection last weekend, and was lured in by the nail lacquer’s promise of: “Wet look. Plasticized Finish. Extreme Wear.” I picked Petra, a shimmering, dark copper shade. Normally, it takes me forever to do my nails because I am fanatical about doing a proper manicure and/or pedicure. The nice long soak, the cuticles, another soak, the shaping, buffing, exfoliating, moisturizing… and then if I’m not thoroughly exhausted, I commence with the base coat and generally three coats of polish and a top coat, each with a prolonged drying period between coats. Merciful heavens! No longer must I suffer between coats! I applied one coat of this magical lacquer over a base coat, and that was all I needed. It’s doesn’t run, it doesn’t separate, it just delivers a smooth, even coat of polish that dries super quickly. I didn’t even bother with a top coat, it just looked so shiny and marvelous. Within 15 minutes I was getting changed, peeling a banana and rummaging through drawers without the slightest fear of dinging my polish. I’ve never experienced that in my life!

Screen shot www.marcjacobsbeauty.com / Look at those colours! / Click to visit

Not to over-dramatize, but I feel like I have a new lease on life. I love having pretty, polished nails, but my incurable fanaticism for proper procedure in matters of grooming has too often caused me to skip the colour portion of my mani/pedi process. Not only is this nail lacquer going to save me an hour at least, it’s going to stay put. I can’t wait to pick up more of these shades and try out the other cosmetics. If the nail lacquer is this fantastic, I can only begin to imagine how much I’ll love the eye, lip and other products.

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Meet Guest Blogger Andrea Paschal

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With September right around the corner, I thought I would call upon some of my lovely friends to share their fall inspiration with us. I’m rather fortunate to have some of the most brilliant and creative people in my life, and I’m really excited to have them write for Fox and Rook. Alors, without further ado… meet my first guest blogger, Andrea! — Hollis

Andrea Paschal Guest BloggerI love music and would say my life revolves around it. During the day, I manage the Coalition of Independent Music Stores and Think Indie Distribution. We handle music marketing for some of the best indie record stores across the country, and we are also a distribution company. Our focus is special or limited edition releases, created especially for indie stores. We are also one of the co-founders of Record Store Day.

I am listening to music most of the time. I think for that reason it is one of the biggest memory triggers for me, the other of course being scent. I host a weekly radio show, Spellbound (substrateradio.com), so I am always thinking about songs that would work for that. I always loved making comps for my friends and put a lot of work into the sequence and all… so with the show, I get to do that every week! As much as I love listening to music, I enjoy creating music as well. I sing and play keyboard/synths primarily.

Art, fashion and perfume are my other obsessions. All three elements inspire me and have shaped me into the person I am today. If my career wasn’t music based it would probably be in fashion; however, I would also love to work with perfume. I am quite obsessed with the science of it… either that or I would be an Egyptologist!

Favorite Fashion Moment: Whenever the 70’s does the 20’s.

Fashion Icons: Women: Kate Bush, Patti Smith, Angelica Huston, Emmanuelle Khanh Men: Nick Cave, Keith Richards, Michael Hutchence (circa KICK and earlier)

My Fashion Philosophy: A great jacket, shoes and accessories can make any outfit. I always try to choose pieces that will be well loved and well worn… the sort of things that get even better looking with age. I love black and white everything and would probably be happiest living inside an Aubrey Beardsley drawing.

Andrea Paschal Fall PicksClockwise from top left.

My Fall Essentials:

1. Diptyque Opopanax Candle – This and their Tubereuse are my favorite candle scents ever! I also love Cire Trudon’s Ernesto. In the fall and winter I adore the smell of Opopanax mixed with a warm fire

2. Rodarte Shirt – Rodarte is one of my favorite designers. I look forward to their shows every season. This shirt is from the spring line but I will still be obsessing over this come fall. I love the cut and the graphic lines.

3. Chanel Le Vernis Alchimie – From the Fall 2013 “Superstition” collection, it’s like a precious metal melted onto your fingertips.

4. Chanel “Mystere” Les 4 Ombres Eyeshadow Palette – Beautiful shadow colors and everything you need to take you from a pretty day look to a dramatic evening eye all in one little compact!

5. Cynthia Rowley Flask Bangle – This may be the best jewelry invention EVER. I can’t believe it has taken this long!!!

6. Tom Ford Black Orchid Lipstick – I don’t think I ever leave the house without this luxurious shade of lippy.

7. Saint Laurent Star Cardigan – I would never want to take this off!

8. IOSSELLIANI Cheetah Head Earring – I love the idea of mismatching earrings and especially one really dramatic one – this is the perfect example.

9. Zoe Karssen Bat Tee – These t-shirts have a rock and roll edge but are so soft they are a dream to wear plus I get to keep alive my not-so secret goth side!

10. Maje Babbette Boot – This will probably be my go to boot this fall – they just look good with everything!

11. Byredo Oud Immortel – I am in love with everything about this perfume line. Ben Gorham, the creator, is probably one of my biggest crushes right now! Such beautiful packaging and incredible fragrances. I love wearing Seven Veils (another scent from Byredo) in the summer, but when the leaves start to turn and that first chill is in the air, I can’t wait to break out this fragrance.

12. Unearthen Pyramid Watch – I love everything Unearthen does and these watches are one of my favorite items from the line. I love that every one is unique.

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Saje Advice

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Somewhere between my 18th and 20th year, I became quite obsessed with making my own beauty products. It was the turn of the century, and bath bombs were all the rage. After a long day of browsing the Geocities websites on Netscape 4.0, there was nothing quite like slipping out of those Miss Sixtys, and enjoying a fizzy soak in the tub.

I started taking classes at the community center, and learned how to make lip balm, shampoo, conditioner, soap and the ever fabulous bath bombs. I would set up in my kitchen, crank up the Chicks on Speed, and get to work.

Chicks on Speed Will Save Us AllMy homemade hair products smelled nice, but were never powerful enough to tame the beast that is my hair. The lip balm always tasted like stevia, and was never moisturizing enough to undo the damage of years of Lip Smacker addiction. I will always love handmade soaps, but I haven’t laid eyes on a bath bomb in nearly 15 years. That is, until now.

This past weekend, my daughter and I went on a nice long walk to the beach. There was a festival going on, and we thought we’d check it out. It was cool when we set out, but by the time we made it down to the beach, it was roasting. Swarming with people, and roasting. We walked, and we walked, and then I saw it: Saje.

Actually, I smelled it before I saw it. The unmistakable perfume of pure essential oils took me back to my DIY beauty product days, and I practically ran inside.

We were greeted by an absolutely gorgeous and ridiculously tall (jealous!) woman who recognized that I was about to pass out from heat, and kindly spritzed me with a Carrot Mist. Oh, it smelled so good. I’m quite fond of the smell of carrot oil. Throw some geraniums in there, and honey, I’m sold! Perhaps it was witchcraft, or the power of suggestion, but I actually felt quite refreshed after a few spritzes.

We wandered about the shop, sniffing everything possible, when the shiny foil wrappers of the Bath Swishes caught little B’s eye, and she wanted to smell them all. Aha! Little cakes that fizz away in your tub, releasing gorgeous fragrances as you bathe. Miss B became rather enamoured of the Tantra Bath Swish, so I treated her to one. Any incentive to get the kid in the bath!

Saje Tantra Bath SwishLast night, she used the swish, and let me tell you, never (ever) have I had such positive feelings about patchouli. It smelled like a rich hippie in the bathroom, and I mean that in a really good way. I feel like an old love has been rekindled. Bath bombs, I missed you all this time, and I didn’t even know it.

You can buy their products online, but if you find yourself in the Greater Vancouver Area, pop in to one of their shops. The people that work there are incredibly helpful and super friendly, and the scents are heavenly. You will find me in the section with the shiny foil wrapped bath swishes, reliving the halcyon days of my youth.

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Summer Skin Care: Battling Time and the Elements

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The awesome thing about being in your thirties, (and by awesome, I mean crummy) is that your skin doesn’t know what to do with itself. I feel like I’m constantly trying to prevent wrinkles, sunspots, lack of elasticity, and other such impending signs of age. At the same time, I am prone to the occasional bout of acne, the likes of which I never experienced as a teenager. It’s a drag, right? Finally, I’ve found the right combination of products for me, and an easy routine that helps keep my skin healthy, clean and (hopefully) youthful.

It goes without saying that a healthy diet, staying well hydrated and getting your heart rate up now and then, all have an impact on your skin’s appearance. Health is radiance!

Once you’ve got the good-skin-from-the-inside-out approach taken care of, establishing a good cleansing and care routine is key. I always include my neck and décolletage in this routine. What good is a youthful face if it’s sitting atop a wrinkled old leathery chest. Ick!

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My Guerlain lady told me that washing my face with water was probably drying out my skin, and suggested I use a cleansing water in the mornings. I took her advice, and started using Nuxe’s Micellar Cleansing Water with Rose Petals. Making this simple change has been a game changer for my skin. No more dry patches!

My eyes are pretty puffy most of the time. It runs in the family. We all look like we’ve been snorting pollen and stay up all night crying. As if that isn’t enough, I’m also a redhead, and we gingers seem to come with these lovely lilac tinted undereyes that only serve to make us look haggard. But wait, there’s more! I’m also starting to get fine lines around my eyes. Are you jealous, yet? Well, thanks to Guerlain’s Abeille Royale eye cream, my little puffers are firm and smooth. I really love this whole line from Guerlain. Okay, I really love everything Guerlain.

In July and August, I don’t really need a moisturizer in the mornings, I find that sunscreen is enough for me. If I start putting too many things on my face, I feel greasy and coated. Blech! Enter: La Roche-Posay Anthelios 60. Light, broad spectrum coverage, minimal ingredients. Perfect for protecting my face from the big, bad, harmful rays of our beloved sun.

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In the evening, I take a little bit of extra time, but still keep a very simple routine.

If I’ve been wearing eye makeup, I use Lancome’s BiFacil eye makeup remover. I love how soft and smooth it leaves the skin around my eyes.

With eye makeup cleared away, I wash my face with Guerlain’s Secret de Pureté Cleansing Foaming Cream. This lovely foaming cleanser leaves my skin feeling clean, but not stripped. It smells absolutely gorgeous, and it lasts for ages, as half a pump is plenty to wash your face with.

Next, I alternate nights using a night cream and a resurfacing treatment. Alpha H Liquid Gold is a product that I learned of via A Model Recommends. It has done brilliant things for my skin! An even tone and a smoother surface are the biggest differences I’ve noticed after using this product every other night for several weeks. It didn’t take but a few applications to notice a difference. I don’t follow the application with any moisturizer or other products, I just go to bed and let it do it’s thing.

When I’m not Alpha H-ing, I apply Guerlain’s Happyology Night Care. It’s so light, and leaves a lovely feeling on the skin. A lot of night creams are heavy and dense, which I find unbearable in the summer. This cream purports to release endorphins, causing you to wake up with happy skin! I daresay, I like the results.

A wee massage around the eyes with Abeille Royale eye cream, and it’s off to bed with me. Easy!

Once a week I spend a little time doing a deep cleansing routine to keep those pores clean. Check back for a post on that next week. Meanwhile, do tell! What are your summer skin care secrets?

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