Friday, February 17, 2012

The Friday Forum - February 17

This morning, it's warm and foggy outside. As I carried trash and recycling out to the bins for today's pick-up, I saw snowdrops peeking out from the leaves covering the ground. It was a sure sign that winter will soon give way to spring. If only the weather forecasters, who are predicting 1-4" of snow this weekend, had received the telegraph.

This week, I've been in beauty overload. I've had an opportunity to see or test many new products, and I've received many boxes of new treasures. I am really hoping for bright sunshine today. I'm eager to show you the new Chantecaille Coral Reefs Palette. It's hard to have something so beautiful that's still hands-off because I can't get a pristine photo if I dig in. I saw a tester at Neiman Marcus this week, but I really want to experience Chantecaille nirvana alone, in my own house. Does that make any sense?

Neiman Marcus Beauty Event starts next week (February 23) and runs through Sunday, March 4. With any beauty purchase of $100 or more - easy to do - you'll take home a tote filled with samples, including Tom Ford Neroli Portofino fragrance, A DOZEN ROSES Electron fragrance, La Mer Restorative Body Lotion, and Kate Somerville Clinic-to-Go Pads. The totes are available in hot pink, neon yellow, and gold. I was given the gold one, and I love it! The gifts with purchase are the main attraction at Beauty Event. The list is long and includes Chantecaille, Le Métier de Beauté (Red Velvet Lip Crème), Nest, Antica Farmacista, Sisley, and Laura Mercier. It's a good time to pre-order. If you don't have a local Neiman Marcus and want personalized assistance, give Sunny Choi Noble or Michael Reinhardt at Neiman Marcus Mazza Gallerie a call at (202) 966-9700. Make sure to ask for one of them.

The Saks Fifth Avenue Beauty Week is underway, and the tote is cool, but, in my opinion, the samples inside are not worth the effort. I wish Saks would re-up its game for Beauty Week. It used to be the cat's meow.

I got Charlie's porch fixed last week, and before another week could pass, he broke through another screen panel. I caught him working the screen away from its frame and brought my furry bad boy inside before he could escape. Now I'm on tap for another $100 repair. I wish he could control his instincts! That's makeup money.

It's time for The Friday Forum, our open chat. What new products did you discover this week? Did you find any deals you couldn't resist? Are you using a fabulous product and want to sing its praises? Did you find a beauty product disappointing? Do you have a question others might be able to answer? Want to talk about skin care? What's new in your life? Just use the comments. Don't be shy. Just make sure to ask any question you might have over the weekend. By early the next week, most (not all) readers will have moved on.

Don't forget this week's giveaway contest. By special request, it's for a KORRES Naked Love Your Lips set. The deadline to enter is tomorrow, February 18, at midnight. Good luck!

I have so much beauty news to share. I'll be working hard this weekend to write and get photos. For now, I hope you have a beautiful day - or if you're lucky, a nice, long President's Day weekend.

Photo by Best Things in Beauty


Nina said...

Happy Friday! Don't mean to kvetch but...I agree that Saks' beauty bags have been pretty lame recently, but I also think Neiman's haven't been too great either. If you want to commit to a big purchase from one brand, you can get a good gift, but they don't give very much stuff in the store bag anymore. As I am not loyal to one brand, it's just not worth it anymore...thoughts?

Charlestongirl said...


I hear you. I was there for so long. I would never advise someone to spend $100 just to get the tote.

If you want a lot of GWPs, the entry price is high. You have to be ready to spend a lot - or select carefully.

Evelyn said...

It always cheers me up to see flowers poking up from the winter detritus; yay, spring is coming! Although, I could use one nice big snowstorm to have a snow day from work. :)

This week was definitely a makeup shopping week for me - Valentine's Day gift to self. Of everything I bought, I like the new Dior blush and lilac Dior gloss for spring and Rouge Bunny Rouge duo in A Major the most. I was really curious about how the blush would look (and hoping I would not end up looking like a clown) but it was a natural, glowy pink rose on me. I'm glad I bought it instead of Nars' Gaiety. I now have plenty of new makeup to play with during this long messy weathered weekend!

Clarisse said...

Hi Charlestongirl!
What lovely news: really, Spring is coming? I wish it were true here...The horrid fortnight of snow, cold, blizzard and black ice is behind but I wish I could see snowdrops now...The spring make-ip is coming out here and we are discovering it A lovely Friday and a beautiful week-end to all:-)

Eileen said...

Hi Charlestongirl; Hi Nina,

You are both so right about the beauty event gift bags and GWP's. Although I have gotten some nice samples in the past, most were throwaways as were the incredibly cheap looking totes. I'd really rather have a nicer selection of samples in a serviceable box.

This week I made another Tom Ford purchase. I bought the eyeshadow quad in Burnished Amber, the blusher in Love Lust, and the Lip Lacquer. Although it is colorless, the Lip Lacquer gives a beauitful pearl-like lustrous shine to the lips. It's really quite pretty all on its own and looks luscious over lipstick. Since I've been wearing more lipstick than gloss just lately, I find that Lip Lacquer is the ideal product to keep in my purse as it goes with everything.

After reading comments from Ava and other ladies, I'd really like to try the TF eyebrow pencil. My problem is that I purchased one from Chanel just last month. Since my eyebrows are fairly thick and black, I only need a pencil to touch up the occasional bald spots that occur as hair sheds. At that rate, my Chanel pencil will probably dry out long before I use it up. But, I'm really intrigued by the unique shape and wonderful formula of the TF. Perhaps I should just go ahead and splurge on the TF. There! I think I've talked myself into it ;-)

So, Charlie has been up to mischief--again! I think it's become a great game for your little tiger, Charlestongirl. Once they get it in their heads to do something, nothing will hold them back until they grow tired of it. One of our huskies was always escaping from our yard when she was about a year old. She was attracted to our neighbor's yard because they also had an energetic pup to play with--and a swimming pool. It turns out our Bobby loved taking a dip in their pool. Retrieving her daily from our neighbors went on all summer. We raised the height of the fence (she could jump 6'), we lined the fence along the ground with rocks (she was quite a digger), we trimmed the hedge back from the fence so she couldn't use it to climb on--that dog was driving us nuts! No matter what we did, she kept getting out. The mystery was finally solved when our neighbor showed us a video he had taken. We have a mature tree near the dividing fence that has branches extending over onto the neighbor's side. The video showed Bobby climbing along the branches about 20 feet off the ground and then dropping down into the neighbor's yard where she was ecstatically greeted by their two dogs. All I can say is thank God we had such wonderful neighbors who liked Bobby and that by the end of the summer, Bobby was finally content to stay in our own yard with her own pack. I ask you, Charlestongirl, what's a mother to do? LOL

Have a great weekend, everyone.

Charlestongirl said...

Evelyn, as long as you aren't wishing snow on us, I'm with you. Those who want snow deserve a winter wonderland. I think our snow prediction is narrowing into 2 inches, which I can handle.

I need to feature Gaiety soon. I didn't like my first set of swatch photos, so I had to find time for a do-over. Maybe this weekend. It's pretty. I can see why you don't need two blushes in that color family. Makes perfect sense. :)

Charlestongirl said...

Hi Clarisse,

With all the reports I've heard about the European deep freeze, I'm sending my sympathy.

Charlestongirl said...

Eileen, he climbed the tree? That's amazing! A not-so-little monkey!

I found out that week that our much-anticipated TF counter in the DC area isn't going to happen before fall. I had been told we were hoping for spring, and some sales associates were promising it (God knows why!), but fall will be the earliest. I'm bummed. We will be getting nail colors at all the counters with lip colors. That's all for the immediate future. I want to get my hands in the full TF collection and play!

My new gold NM tote is really nice. I'll enjoy it. The samples are nice too - way better than Saks. Unfortunately, to get the best gifts, you have to spend significant sums at each brand. It would cost thousands to get all the ones I'd like to have (and I can't spend thousands next week), unless...

Going to try to remember to get lottery tickets later. I was disappointed that I didn't win Powerball's 300M last weekend. Why do I keep hoping?

MikkiD said...

Happy Friday! Thanks for the gorgeous flower post. My daffodils are actually starting to come up. I do hope the 50/50 chance of snow for our area on Sunday is actually rain. I agree on the lame Saks and NM bags over the last 2 years. The "samples" and coupons are miserable, BUT . . I keep the bags in a container in the rear of my car and use them for shopping bags. Target gives credit for using your own bags, I don't have to tote home boxes from Costco then worry about recycling them, and the bags last forever.

Eileen said...

Hi Charlestongirl,

Yes, we were a bit astounded when we saw the video of Bobby up in the tree. We hypothesized that she was using our 4' garden wall to launch herself up onto the lower branches. Once she could grab a substantial branch, it couldn't have been too hard to work her way up and over. Actually, it is the same thing my sons used to do when they were boys. Anyway, we created a "cage" going over the garden wall near the tree so she couldn't use it as her launch pad. That's when her trips to the neighbors finally stopped. What a dog!

I think you'll have fun once you can play with TF. It's unadulterated luxuary and the prices reflect that. Not everything is great, but that's true of any line. There are a lot of real treasures, though; enough to make you say, "Yes, this is definitely Tom Ford." And, when it comes to the eyeshadow quads and blushers, you get a rediculously large amount of product which actually makes them quite a bargain--at least that's what I keep telling myself :-D

Charlestongirl said...

Hi NikkiD!

Great minds think alike. I use them that way too. I also give them to my friends. When they are really nice, like the current NM gold one, I carry them to work!

I agree that lame is a good word. Anyone who remembers the old days has to wonder. Is it the economy, or do they think we'd do anything for a freebie?

Charlestongirl said...


That is! I have never heard of a tree-climbing or tree-jumping dog. I guess I shoudn't be surprised. Foxes climb trees. But a husky? That's a skill better than a talking dog! I love that story!

I must go to New York...I must get back to New York. I have so many people to visit and so many things to see and buy, including TF. Must save money... Must stop buying everything in sight... Oops, I forgot to get the lottery tickets. Doubt I'll go out now. I'm ready to relax.

Ava said...

Most beauty bags and GWP really aren't what they used to be. Just a few years ago one got travel sized products (several sizes up from samples), and I have a couple of Chanel mini powder and foundation brushes that I've using for years. I'm pleased that LMdB still has nice gifts, and Koh Gen Do sent a cute cosmetic organizer that I'm finding very useful. I was really surprised that Barneys recent beauty bag was so nice. I didn't get a Sunday Riley lipgloss - though that may be just as well - but did get a full-sized Lippman nail polish, Lipstick Queen lipstick, and a Kevin Aucoin lip gloss. Many other samples came in the bag including a Koh Gen Doh Macro Vintage Eye treatment sample. I'll be saving up for Barneys' beauty events from now on. The bag required a $200 purchase, but I had that much or more on my wishlist of products, most of which are exclusive to Barneys.

Eileen, don't you need an eyebrow product to carry in your bag? ;)

Eileen said...

Oh Ava! You're brilliant! Of course I do :-)