Archive for the ‘reviews’ Category

The Big Moisturizer Experiment
January 10, 2010

Why do I think it’s a good idea to do makeup/face cleanser/moisturizer experiments when I have to actually go somewhere to go to work? I work at home most of the time. Why doesn’t it occur to me to try something new when I am going to be at home, with no one around but the dogs? That would make way more sense than before I head off to speak in front of two hundred people. But whatever.

For the past couple of months I have been using Korres Watermelon Lightweight Tinted Moisturiser SPF 30. It is all natural and organic, which is what I am trying to move toward with all of my skincare. Prior to this I used the tinted moisturizer from Dermalogica, but it has parabens and other terrible stuff in it so I went searching for something better for my skin. Immediately I liked several things about the Korres moisturizer. It smells good, is organic, was reasonably priced, didn’t irritate my skin, and at first seemed to work pretty well. Then I realized (especially as I got farther away from my summer tan and my skin got paler) that the color was kind of….yellow. And it dried really fast on my skin so if I got too much somewhere I had to fix it immediately or it dried in place. And the coverage was more than I needed, so much so that I got the yellow line on my neck.

However, because I didn’t want to waste it, I decided to get a non-tinted moisturizer that didn’t dry so quickly and try mixing them together. I bought the Juice Beauty Oil-Free Moisturizer after trying it out at Sephora. The two mixed like a dream, giving me the color, consistency, sheerness, and drying time that I wanted. However after I put it on my face would get really warm for a minute, and I was worried I was having some kind of reaction.

So fast forward to my last day in Manila, getting ready for work. I decide, hey, maybe I should just put on the Juice Beauty moisturizer and see if that’s the problem. Genius, right? So I get it on, and sure enough, my face turns red and gets warm. Issue discovered! Then, before I can really worry about it, the warmth and redness fades and I begin to look like myself again, albeit with a slightly less even skin tone than I have after using my tinted moisturizer. I went to get dressed and give my moisturizer a chance to dry, then I went back to finish my makeup. And the  moisturizer had not dried, not at all. It was sitting on my face like oil on water. Um, not good. I have approximately 7 minutes before I have to walk out the door and no makeup or shoes on. I frantically grab tissues and start blotting like crazy. I end up getting most of the goop off my face, and getting a shortened makeup regimen done before slipping into my shoes and running out the door.

Lesson learned: the Korres is too drying, the Juice Beauty is too wet, but together they are perfect. The warm face goes away pretty quickly, so I should be okay doing this from now on.  And don’t , for heaven’s sake, do makeup experiments before work anymore. Let the dogs be the judge of how well something is working!

Thanks for listening.

Long Flight Comfort Part 2
January 7, 2010

Winners and Losers

Seat Cushion—loser  😦 Again, I think this could be useful but because I got to lie down across four seats on the flight from Tokyo to Manila I did not need it. So I guess maybe it’s not really a loser, just not a winner?

Travel blanket—loser 😦 Maybe it’s because Japan Airlines is really good, or maybe because technically I was flying internationally so they had more amenities. But they have blankets there that are lightly stitched together after washing so you know nobody has used it before you. So needless to say I did not use my travel blanket. Also, I know that they post dimensions on Amazon, but I swear this thing was way bigger than I expected.

Compression socks—winner!! Actually, big winner.  They are not perfect, as I could still see some mild swelling in my feet.  My ankles were barely bigger than normal, though, which is a minor miracle. Considering that I was in transit for 27 hours total, I think they worked amazingly well.

Slippers—winner!!  They were very helpful on the long flight. Highly recommend for long flights.

Toiletries—neutral.  I didn’t end up needing any of these things, as American Airlines gives you a little bag with toiletries in it when you fly Business Class. But if I were in coach the whole way I would definitely need these items.

I guess the bottom line is that if you are lucky enough to get upgraded, long flights are much more comfortable without you having to do anything.  However, if I were in coach I think I would use all of the items I brought. So I guess that means everyone is a winner! Go team Road Warriorette!

Okay I think the lack of sleep may be making me delusional. Can’t wait to get back home!

Long Flight Comfort Update 1
January 5, 2010

This is the Winners and Losers version, Part 1.

Kindle—Winner!!  Normally for a two day trip I will bring 4 books. For a trip with 50 hours of flying I brought 8, on my Kindle. The first thing I noticed as I was picking up my purse to leave for the airport was how light it was. Awesome! I have read two books so far, and my eyes have not hurt at all, which I was concerned about. It has been great! The only problem is that I did not receive my case before I left, so I am constantly worried about dropping it or breaking it.

Eye mask—Winner!! Of course, I didn’t end up needing the one I bought because they give you one in Business Class on American, which I didn’t realize. Oh well.  Not only did I use the eye mask on both long flights, but I used it in my hotel room yesterday when I was sleeping during the day (remember, I’m working at night and sleeping during the day).  The only disconcerting moment came on the first flight when the nice man beside me had to wake me up so he could get out of his seat. It was pitch black even when I opened my eyes, and there was a quiet, unknown, Japanese-accented voice in my ear. Took a minute  🙂

Ear plugs—loser 😦  I didn’t end up using them, because when it comes down to it, it creeps me out. I didn’t realize this until I was about to put them in. Maybe I will try again, maybe not.  What I did end up using was my iPhone White Noise app with headphones, and that was great. With the eye mask on and the white noise going in my ears, it was like I was the only one on the plane!

Seat Organizer—Loser  😦  I still think this could be really useful, but it took up a lot of room in my backpack that I just didn’t have to spare, so I didn’t even bring it. I think for another trip it could work, so I’m going to try again.

Next edition:  Seat cushion, travel blanket, and compression socks. Fun times!

Gift Guide for the Road Warriorette in Your Life
December 16, 2009

Finding presents for the people you love can be tricky. But never fear! Road Warriorette is here to give you a few suggestions for the lady traveler in your life.

Suitcase

The one thing required for all overnight trips. Ogio luggage is lightweight, durable, and the pockets will expand to amazing proportions. Mine fits into all overhead luggage carriers on normal sized airplanes.

Travel Kit and Travel Bottles

I love these Aveda travel bottles. I have used them for years and they have never leaked or broken. It’s nice to have a pump and varying shapes as well. Of course, you can’t send the cute green bag through security (make-up case anyone?), but you can pop the Aveda bottles into this clear, TSA-approved quart size bag that is infinitely more durable then that holey zipoc bag your loved one has been carrying around. And here is yet another super cute option for travel bottles! Great stocking stuffers.

Noise Canceling Headphones

There are a ton of great ones on the market. Here is a comprehensive review from CNet of top brands and a range of prices.

Pashmina

I don’t need to make another post about the Pashmina and all of its wonderful uses. Just know that it would be a perfect  gift for your favorite traveler.

Travel Purse or Briefcase

This beautiful (but pricey!) Tumi bag is a great example of functionality, shape, and attractiveness in a carry-on bag. However other (less expensive) bags would be great as well.

Business Card Holder

One of my favorite blogs gives a range of pretty choices in a range of options. Good for all people with business cards, not just travelers!

Travel Yoga Tools

I would be lost on the road without my yoga. Here is a great, lightweight version of my everyday mat so your favorite traveling lady can get through her asanas without slipping on the floor on a hotel towel (been there, it’s not awesome). Another great travel-friendly option is the Manduka Equa Towel from Lulu Lemon.

Up in the Air by Walter Kirn

The book about our lives! I will watch the movie before I read the book, but I hope someone gets me this for Christmas 🙂

Kindle

I don’t have a Kindle but I want one! Don’t pack 10 books for a two-week trip, just take your Kindle. Genius.

Travel Document Holder

Great for the traveler who is flying internationally on a regular basis. Keep your boarding pass and your passport together!  And this one is so bright, it will never get lost in the depths of your bag.

Travel care kit—Emergen-C, eyemask, earplugs

A few travel necessities can make a great stocking stuffer!

Napa was fabulous
October 30, 2009

A couple of weeks ago, the Home Warrior (aka my husband) and I went to Napa for a short vacation. Since my sister lived in San Francisco for a while, I have been to Napa and Sonoma several times. However Home Warrior had never been out there, so when he had a few extra vacation days that’s where we decided to go.

We flew into Sacramento because we have some friends that moved out there last year. We stayed with them that night, and went to eat at Hot Italian.  At Hot Italian you can buy pizza, gelato, good wine, and outfits to wear while driving your Maserati: a true Italian experience.  There were a lot of different pizzas on the menu, and some you could get as either a pizza or a calzone, or a pizza or a salad. Home Warrior got a fabulous pizza with gorgonzola, prosciutto, figs, and arugula. I got a pizza that could also be a salad with spinach, craisins, gorgonzola, and pears. I was expecting my pizza to be a little more like Home Warrior’s, which was a traditional pizza with the aforementioned items as traditional toppings. Instead what I got was a pizza crust with a salad on top of it. Although it was not exactly what I was expecting, it was delicious, as was the gelato we had for dessert. A special thanks to Eric, Tara, Taric, Jasmine, and Venus for letting us crash at their place and for entertaining us Saturday night. It was great fun to hang out with friends.

Sunday we got up and drove to Napa Valley, where we stayed until Wednesday. We went to several wineries, ate some amazing meals, and stayed at the very comfortable and affordable Eurospa and Inn. Some highlights:

Domain Carneros—my favorite place to go for sparkling wine. The wine is made in the traditional méthode Champenoise, is complete organic, and the tasting is a great deal at three three-ounce tastes for $15. The soft cheese plate is a great accompaniment, and the views cannot be beat.

Gustavo Thrace—great wine, knowledgeable and friendly staff, and Gustavo was featured in the movie Bottleshock. I actually got to meet him when I was there last March which was really cool.

Duckhorn—it’s worth it to go here for the building alone, which is beautiful but cozy at the same time. The wine is delicious, the pours are quite generous, and the staff is very friendly.

Culinary Institute of America Greystone Restaurant—Best. Meal. Ever. Enough said.

Eurospa and Inn—boutique hotel in Calistoga. Very cute, clean, with Jacuzzi-tubs and fireplaces in all the rooms. The owners are really nice and spot on with recommendations to eat in town.  They also give a great breakfast in the morning and set out cookies and cheese in the afternoon.

It was cloudy the whole time we were there, and rained torrentially the last full day, but it was a great vacation and we can’t wait to go back.