Archive for February, 2013

Spa Treatments You Can Do At Home

Woman putting on green face mask

As a lover of nature, organic products, and all things DIY, I thought that this post would be an interesting read if we talked about DIY spas! Mother Nature has blessed us with an abundance of good resources all containing hidden beauty secrets and elements. The joy of Doing It Yourself means that you get to experience these natural miracles taking place for yourself. Things like Chocolate, yogurt, strawberries, heavy cream, and honey are not just yummy–they are beauty. For example, check out this interesting and easy, quickly-lather-it-on-and-wash-it-off, spa recipe I came across:

DIY Choco Spa
1/3 cup cocoa
3 tablespoons heavy cream
3 teaspoons cottage cheese
1 /4 cup honey
3 teaspoons oatmeal powder

Mix all these ingredients together and smooth in onto your face, under your chin, and around your neck. Relax and let the ingredients do the talking. Rinse it off with warm water after 10 to 15 minutes and feel the difference!

I think I know what my next project for that extra tin of cocoa in my pantry will be! As you can see, the way to charm yourself into a spa does not necessarily have to burn a hole in your pocket or smash the already broken pieces of your piggy bank. I personally love DIY at home spas because they are simple, affordable, don’t require a drive to town, and can be done at any time of day that best fits my schedule.

As most women know, the hours of the day when the best parlours are open is when we are at the office. Closing hours are pretty much aligned as well. Sadly the manicurists, pedicurists, and spa specialists need to go home and have a break too. But as the old saying goes “if you want it done, do it yourself”!

Another absolutely delicious spa set of ingredients is this Thanksgiving spa scrub that I think was absolute find!

Thanksgiving Spa!
1 tablespoon fresh apple mash or apple sauce
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Mix all the ingredients together, being sure not to leave sugar lumps, and then apply it to your skin using circular motions. Because apples are rich in nutritional benefits, are 85% water filled, and are loaded with potassium and Vitamins A and C, they are a rich and healing ingredient for your skin. I’ve found this scrub to be perfect for removing dead skin cells and surface dirt from elbows, knees, and feet.

Exfoliating too does not have to be rocket science. But doing so will make your skin feel sweet as sugar and soft as butter. It can be done at home using simple ingredients like table salt, sugar, ground coffee, or other what have you rough ingredients. One simple concoction is to put one part table salt into a jar or small pot, along with two parts olive oil. Give it a gently stir and then apply with love! Rub it into your skin, rinse, and remove. You can use the same approach exchanging Vitamin E oil for olive oil and the salt for sugar or ground coffee, but don’t use instant granules…it’s melts down to a messy procedure…true story! 😉

Not to launch a sales pitch with this bit of info, but there’s this unique bath salt product out by Dead Sea Spa Magik. It’s relatively cheap, lasts for ages, and does wonders for improving skin texture and tone. The Dead Sea Spa Magik bath salt is also wonderfully relaxing because it’s got bromides, magnesium, and potassium that help to soothe away any aches and pains.

On an ending note, don’t forget that spas are meant to be pleasure pools for renewal, rejuvenation, and relaxation. They are important for health, beauty, and peace. Happy spa time!

Christine Stevens is a dietician counsellor and writer. She has written many articles, blogs, and posts on the subject of natural healing and natural diet. Presently living in London with her husband and three children, Christine holds the firm belief that “nature works best” and holds conferences, discussion groups, and counsels on the subject of nutrients and diet. Evangeline encourages her readers to go for as natural as possible products like those from Dead Sea Spa Magik for overall beauty and care.

Jennifer Aniston’s Hair Looked Great At The Oscars

Jennifer Aniston

Did you watch the Oscars last night? Jennifer Aniston wore a strapless, red Valentino Haute Couture gown, paired with a Ferragamo clutch. But it was her decision to wear her hair down and straight that had critics up in arms.

Personally, I thought her hair looked great, and I’m telling my colorist to try and mimic that the next time I go in for coloring.. What does Perez Hilton know about hair anyway?

I’ll take long straight hair over the cropped cuts that Charlize Theron and Anne Hathaway were sporting last night. Movie role or not, it’s just not flattering..

Photo Credit: Chesi – Fotos CC (cc)

The Best Places To Visit In London

London Eye at Night

London is a favorite destination for many people during the summer. The city gets VERY crowded around July. But regardless of when you’re planning on visiting London, be sure to check the weather forecast first, as weather in London is very unpredictable.

There’s plenty to do year-round, and it’s rich history and architecture attract visitors from around the world. London is the capital and the largest city of both UK and England, and at the same time it’s the largest city in the European Union.

The Houses of Parliament stands right by the old Palace of Westminster. The oldest part of House of Parliament is the Westminster Hall, which was built in 1097. The Westminster hall is one of Europe’s largest unsupported medieval halls. And let’s not forget that the clock tower is home to the world-famous Big Ben. You can even climb the stairs to the top to see the famous bell!

One of London’s greatest icons is the Westminster Abbey. It’s where each and every King and Queen has been crowned since 1066. If you’d like to get a birds-eye view of the city, the London Eye is an amazing way to do so. On a sunny day, the whole city is laid out in front of you. London Eye presents another extraordinary and entertaining way to enjoy the capital city.

There are many new shows and events that take place in London’s theaters. The one that stands out is the Apollo Victoria Theater. The theater is located on West-End of the city. It’s an icon that is a must-see for many travelers. Apollo Victoria opened as the New Victoria Cinema in 1930, at a cost of a quarter million pounds. Thanks to its architectural design and history, the building is believed to be the most important and interesting cinema building in the UK.

The East End of London is where you can take a tour around Whitechapel and find out interesting facts about the murders of Jack the Ripper. Most of his killings took place around that neighborhood, and still there are buildings and restaurants reminding us of the serial killer.

London is a city with a plenty of history and sites to be seen. It’s impossible to describe through words, it needs to be experienced first-hand. The city offers entertainment for people seeking to explore history, or enjoy a romantic vocation. In the center of the city, you’ll find a town filled with parks and gardens, which makes it not only full of history, but also full of life and nature.

Taking Advantage Of The Carnival Triumph Fiasco

Carnival Triumph

By now, I’m sure you’ve heard about the Carnival Triumph fiasco, which has been often referred to as the “cruise from hell” and the “poop cruise”. The nightmare is finally over for the trapped passengers, but Carnival has a tough road ahead of itself.

Carnival stands to lose between $80-100 million from this disaster, not to mention how this might affect future bookings.. Would you really want to cruise with Carnival in light of this disaster?

In order to keep their boats at capacity, Carnival will have to discount upcoming cruises, and I fully plan on taking advantage of this to score a cheap cruise! 🙂

I’ve cruised with Carnival probably 6-7 times over the past decade (including two cruises on the Triumph), and I’ve always had a great time! This was a freak accident, but I’m not going to let it scare me away from cruising again.

Will you?

Some Cocktail Recipes For Valentine’s Day Dinner

Ladies, are you cooking your man a romantic dinner at home this Valentine’s Day? If so, you can’t forget about the drinks! A great drink can compliment your meal, and it gives you a chance to impress him with your cocktail skills.

Not sure what to make? We’ve got you covered, with a variety of drink recipes that are sure to please. Have fun with the cocktails you create, with embellishments like heart-shaped fruits or chocolate covered strawberries. After all, it’s Valentine’s Day!

Captain’s Black Apple Martini

  • 1 oz Captain Morgan Black Spiced Rum
  • 3/4 oz Apple Liqueur
  • 2 oz Red Cranberry Juice

In an ice filled shaker, glass, combine all the ingredients. Shake well and strain into a sugar rimmed (optional) cocktail glass.

Cruzan Love Potion #9

  • 1 1/2 parts Cruzan 9 Spiced Rum
  • 3/4 part DeKuyper Tropical Coconut
  • 3 parts Pineapple Juice
  • 1 part Cranberry Juice

Shake all ingredients with ice and pour into a highball glass. Garnish with a strawberry on the rim.

Crave Steamy Crush

  • 1 part JDK&Sons Crave Chocolate Mint Liqueur
  • 3 parts Hot Chocolate

Build in a glass coffee mug. Top with mini marshmallows.

Dobel Melonada

  • 1 1/2 oz Dobel Tequila
  • 2 oz Fresh Blended Watermelon
  • 1 oz Pomegranate Juice
  • 1/4 oz Fresh Lime Juice
  • 1/4 oz Agave Nectar

In an ice filled shaker, combine all ingredients. Shake well. Strain over fresh ice into a salt rimmed glass. Garnish with a lime wedge.

Basil Hayden’s Apple Bubbly

  • 1 part Basil Hayden’s Bourbon
  • Sparkling Apple Juice

Add Basil Hayden’s Bourbon to a champagne flute and fill the remainder with sparkling apple juice. Garnish with a sliced apple.

Hope you all have a Happy Valentine’s Day!

The Adidas NEO Line Of Footwear and Apparel Is Here

Check out the new adidas NEO line of clothing, shoes, and accessories, with celebrity endorsements from Selina Gomez and Justin Bieber!

It’s the ideal mix of sporty and casual with an eye for fashion and a focus on fun. The adidas NEO label offers fresh choices in footwear and apparel for living life to the fullest.

So, if you’re looking for the freshest apparel, footwear and accessories for all your daily adventures… You just found it!

Review: Safe Haven

Last night, we were invited to an advanced screening of Safe Haven. The movie, which stars Josh Duhamel and Julianne Hough, comes out on Valentine’s Day. How fitting.. 🙂

The movie is based on the novel from Nicholas Sparks, the best-selling author behind the hit films The Notebook and Dear John. Need I say more?

Here’s the synopsis for Safe Haven:

An affirming and suspenseful story about a young woman’s struggle to love again. When a mysterious young woman arrives in a small North Carolina town, her reluctance to join the tight knit community raises questions about her past. Slowly, she begins putting down roots, and gains the courage to start a relationship with Alex, a widowed store owner with two young children. But dark secrets intrude on her new life with such terror that she is forced to rediscover the meaning of sacrifice and rely on the power of love in this deeply moving romantic thriller.

I’ve been wanting to see this movie ever since I saw the first trailer for it, and I was not disappointed. If you love a good chick-flick that’ll have you leaving the theater in tears, then Safe Haven is just what you’re looking for! Props to my husband for going with me, even though it wasn’t his type of movie..

I thought Julianne Hough did a great job in her role as Katie. I’ve been a big fan of hers since seeing her in Rock of Ages, and I’ve even thought about dying my hair all blonde because of her.

As for Josh Duhamel, what can I say? I’ve loved him since Las Vegas, he’s a great actor and a nice piece of eye-candy to boot! Some people complain that he doesn’t have much acting range, but I felt he totally nailed his role in this movie.

The storyline felt a bit Lifetime-y, but as someone who could sit and watch LMN all day long, that was fine by me. I’d love to say more, but I don’t want to ruin the movie for anyone.

Just go and see it, you won’t be disappointed. And bring some tissues with you, they’ll come in handy!

Review: The Wet Brush

While I was getting my hair cut and colored at the salon last month, I noticed that they were selling a brush called The Wet Brush. I asked my colorist what made this brush so special, and she said that it was a special detangler brush that really worked great. So I decided to spend $10 and try it out for myself.

Well let me tell you, she was absolutely right – The brush is amazing!

If you saw my recent ceramic rollers post, then you saw just how long and thick my hair is. It’s a real chore brushing my hair, and having my hair colored makes it even worse since the process drys out my my hair. When I get out of the shower, the back of my head feels like a rat’s nest!

Up until now, I’ve been using a detangler spray I found at Ulta called It’s A Ten. It works great, but with The Wet Brush I don’t even need to use the detangler anymore. When I use the brush, knots come out with no pain whatsoever. And now when I’m traveling, I don’t need to bring along my detangler anymore.

If you’re looking for a quality detangling brush, get this brush and you don’t be sorry. The Wet Brush costs $10, and comes in a variety of colors. (I went with purple)