What to Wear to Be Ready For What?

I’m a townie to the core which means once I drive somewhere that I consider far away, then pretty much in my frame of reference, I am not thinking of terms of going back in the same direction, which is just a presumption.

But when you think about it, getting in the car and going back in the same direction will feel like the first time to the person you were driving to?

Anyway, when I am driving to an area of our small island that I am not overly familiar with,thing is I don’t know how to dress ‘local’ for that locale.

Add to that, I don’t really know what to expect in how my date is going to dress.

Add to that, I don’t know what we plan to do.

But I like to go with the flow.

Barring packing a whole suitcase of choices, I try to downsize what I bring so I don’t look like I’m bringing too much.

How much is too much?

What am I really saying in the language of the new relationship?

I think I am trying to say, I don’t want to look assuming so I am trying to look unassuming, so thus, I bring less than what I think I need.

One time, I went with my girlfriend to SF for 3-4 days.  I always admired her because she would bring clothes that all worked together and accented her outfits with silk scarves.  I always packed a bunch of clothes for whatever mood I was in, so I usually ended up wearing something towards the end of the trip which I really didn’t think was appropriate but nevertheless was what was clean.  (As an aside, the last morning we were there that trip, she was wearing her pajama t-shirt with a silk scarf, and still managed to look chic).


I’m challenged in what can I bring that is casual yet elegant?  I’m not big on wearing a lot of big jewelry so those articles on dressing up your outfit with necklaces and such fall flat for me.  I’m also not a pattern person. I’m a simple dresser, the less I have to deal with the happier I am.

Another traveling story.  I had gotten packing lightly down to the point where, if I was going to my Mom’s I’d be washing what I brought, and sometimes wearing a t-shirt my sister left (which would really piss her off if she knew).

Yet another digression.  Where I expanded my horizons and I really started packing more than I would ever need (which would secretly bug me).  I travelled with people who brought waaaaaayyyyyy more than would ever be used.  For a neighbor island trip, they would bring a full size suitcase and a duffle bag of shoes and other stuff.  I got used to that and started doing the same, bringing a full size case for a few days.

Nowadays, I’d rather just be unencumbered.

You know, take the baggage free option.

I got that right.



I am planning to bring a long black, tube dress strapless that I can wear with my platform slippers, make my hair bigger or smaller, that feels about the right speed. I could wear this on a Sunday day.

But I’m bringing the option of white jeans, sandals that will go with either outfit, and maybe a black or sparkly top.


Ethnic Math-Secrets of Asian Beauty

A friend gave me a copy of the current O magazine which was all about aging and retrofitting one’s self with various potions.

In O style, they had a spread of the 4 women who we readers were to guess their ages before turning the page.  A blonde, brunette, African American, and a silver-haired stylish, definitely older woman.

I guessed the ages fairly accurately, the blonde I guessed 45, the brunette about 45, the African American, about 60, and the silver haired woman 70-s.  But where was the Asian in the group?!

Thing is in Hawaii, if you’re Asian you can easily identify the ethnic extractions of  other Asian people. Like you can properly ID the Japanese, the Chinese etc.  People think I’m Chinese, but I’m actually Japanese – I just tell them I’m part of the Jade Dynasty (when the Emperor of China sent 3,000 Chinese boys and girls to populate northern Japan and spread the genes).

Ok that was going off on a tangent.

The point I was making.

The other thing in Hawaii is, you learn to guess ages of people taking into consideration their ethnic background.  Like say, you see a Japanese woman, and you automatically ADD 5 years to the age you think she is, to get her proper age.  This works in reverse as well.

I really wish any of these magazines would use Asian women so it would make for an apples to apples comparison.  Not supplying us with an Asian, Indian, Native American and other examples makes a huge difference!

Then how about women who exercise and properly take care of themselves? That makes a gigantic difference as well!  My jazz dance teacher is older than me, and when she gets on the floor and tumbles, you better believe us girls who are younger, better get rolling!


Leading a happy life without a lot of stress also helps in looking younger than you are.  Not having those furrow lines – unhappy expressions really do kind of stick on your face after awhile -just like your mom told you, “Don’t make that face, it might stay that way!”

If you still get zits – DO NOT PICK THEM! I see people in the gym locker room popping their zits in the mirror, and I am grossed out that they are doing it at all, but that they are in public!  There’s a woman in my ballet class who does the same thing, what? she doesn’t think we can see her?

When you pick zits that leaves a nice little scab when they heal which turns into a brown spot, which are probably the #1 beauty complaint after wrinkles.

Drink a ton of water.  Japanese drink water but eat a lot of salty foods-go really light on the salt. A ton of water is measured in liters btw.

Eat fruit for fiber.  I know you can take a pill or a shake, but eating fruit gives you the nutrients and fills you up.  Same for veggies.

Eat food instead of fake food. I’m guilty of eating a slab of food(energy bar) on days I’m on the run but try not to make it a habit.

Keep red meat, or basically any kind of seafood or chicken to a minimum on a daily basis.  It clogs your system.

Moisturize and use a honey scrub.  Really, when you’re enjoying some time with your favorite someone, than it’s nice to have really soft skin.

Wear sunscreen everyday.  My condo has windows all around so even if I’m not going out, I still have sunscreen on. More so on overcast days.

Send out thoughts of gratefulness. To whomever or whatever floats your boat.

It makes a difference.


Beauty and the Brow

I was going through some old photos the other day and I took one out to show my blue eyed man how black my hair was when I was 28 or 29.  In the shot I am in glorious 80-s style makeup with red red lips, red red fingernails and OMG the most bushy unkempt brows I don’t care to remember!

Me at 28 or 29, New Year's Eve at Nicolas Nicolas with bushy brows and 80-s makeup!

Since I just got my brows done professionally by Stacie at Marsha Nadalin, brow artist extraordinaire,  I figured it made sense to post a before and after, though the after is roughly 20 years AFTER!

Really, don’t you just hate it when your brows are all weird?  I can practically feel the errant hairs poking out and it makes my physically uncomfortable.  Plus, oftentimes I channel Spock and I lift my right eyebrow and I swear it gets stuck there after awhile, so Stacie has her job cut out for her in making them look even.

I did my brows by myself for the last

20 years later, much better brows!

year, Stacie had given me a great foundation and I had been trying to maintain them. But when I get in front of the mirror in ballet class I can see things have drastically gone wild!

Happily, I am back on the program and will let Stacie take over!

This aging stuff is a drag-but I am happy I have professionals like Stacie ad Hillary my hair stylist to beat back the hairier effects!


They’re Laughing in Kentucky-Revive’

The HUGE disclaimer on this is, I absolutely love Revive’s products.

But I find it hilarious how they are marketed as a product that consumers might think is French with the spelling and pronunciation of the names like Sensitif’.

Their advertising agency in Kentucky is laughing their asses off – all the way to the bank.  After all, it’s all about the Benjamins.

I bet they sit around the office eating croissants from Costco, downed with French Vienna coffee from a can, all the while thinking up ways to elevate Revive’ products in the mind of the consumer.

Not quite at the price point of La Mer, Revive’ products sport names like Creme’ Lustre’, Volume Intensif, or Sensitif.  They have a new upper level brand called Peau, or Po, or Poh I don’t know.

Recently Nordstroms had Revive’ out for a visit. The Doc got the flu, but his #1 representative did the pitch.  With his snappy suit and UK accent, he properly applied the right air of élan’ and flourish to sampling the product.

It reminded me of a time I was in Jean-Marie Josselin’s Restaurant, A Pacific Cafe, and our waiter was going to great lengths with his French accent.  Turned out he was Jersey and an actor.

But Revive’ products really work and feel good.  I wonder if they would command their price point if they were Revive, Cream Luster, Or Volume Intensive.

Who knows?


Spending the Night-How to Look Ok in the Morning

Like I said before guys have it easy in this area. They pretty much fall out of bed in the morning the same way they looked the night before.  A few may have bedhead but pretty much no change.

I know it’s a double-standard, or maybe it’s just pressure I put on myself, but dating again after being in a long relationship is a little nerve-wracking.

What does he think, I look like this all the time? Does it matter to him?

My advice on looking half decent when you wake up is a little preparation.

Hydrate, meaning drink plenty of water.  Not to the point you have to go to the bathroom a bunch of times, but for every glass of wine you drink, drink a full glass of water (10-12 oz.)

Avoid hard liquor. You can’t possibly thinking downing those tequila shots all night are not going to have a bad effect on your looks the next morning or for the next years.

Don’t mix alcohol. You’ll probably get a headache and frown in your sleep.

Go for food that isn’t salty-avoid the bloat. Helps with puffiness under the eyes too.

TAKE OFF YOUR MAKEUP!  I found some awesome wipes that are’t greasy so they don’t require more cleansing.  They take it all off.

If you have long hair you might consider putting it in a one ponytail bun, or pony, or otherwise, kind of lay it out.  Believe it or not, it works so your hair isn’t all hema-jeng the next morning.  You know, how some people when they come to work in the morning and they tried to plaster their hair down.

Not having a lot of hair product in your hair helps in the above.  If you plastered your hair with hairspray and teased it…….you’ll look like Helena Bonham Carter in Sweeney Todd.

Moisturize your face. Floss your teeth.  Brush your teeth.

I can’t help the fact my feet are a disaster.  One of my dance friends said she is proud of her callused feet – she needs them to dance. Me too.  But have nice toenail color.

If you wear nail color, take it off if it is chipped.  Nothing is tackier in the morning. Think of horrible claws wrapped around a coffee cup.

(When I say snarky things like that, it’s when I am picturing the hair-sprayed, red-lipsticked mess, spider-mascared, “lady” in the client’s building).

In the morning, resist putting on your full face. Brush your teeth, moisturize and fluff up your hair.  Think radiant thoughts.

Stretch a little, gets the blood going.

Post-shower.  Light make up. Bring colors that are suitable for morning light, and use a light hand.  Moisturize your body and face with sunscreen.  My morning/day make up includes moisturizer, sunscreen, tinted sunscreen, rose balm, mascara, eye brow, and brown liner, neutral eye shadow.

Me, a little better.


Oh Honey Honey! Honey Sugar Body Scrub

Well, I felt like I was getting rough around the edges so I decided to do a body scrub and I thought about doing the coconut scrub(sweet sticky Thang), but recalled that honey is also known for its wonderful healing properties.  Plus it’s natural and I figured it would leave less mess in the tub!

I’m all for that!!!

I did about a half cup of honey and added maybe 3/4 cup of granulated sugar. Surprisingly it stiffened very quickly so I added a little water.

Scrubbing away I found that the best way was to apply, then wet my hands a bit so there was more liquid to swish/scrub around the honey sugar mix.

Smells really good too!  Perfect for a romantic night! Yay.

Clean up was a breeze.  You should probably still use some cleanser on the tub to avoid bugs.

So, I think the reason I take the time to do this is, when someone tells me my skin is sooooooo soft that makes me feel it is all worth it.

Plus, I used to use chemical exfoliating body lotions like Neostrata and Amlactin, but I bet they tasted nasty!



The Housewives of WhereEver!

Really, do these women think they look good?  I know they have to shovel the makeup on for HD cameras but they are nuts if they think they look good!

The HW of Atlanta airs with the most frequency in the Hawaii market–that woman Kim, is tardy to her own party! She’s in her 30-s and she looks 50!

I don’t usually rag on people, but I’m a huge Bravo fan so I really get annoyed with only the option of seeing a HW show, be it Miami, New York or wherever.

But then you’d have to think, what would HW of Honolulu be like?  I’m a freelancer so I’m able to go to the gym the same time all of the HW of Honolulu go. I have to admit I envy their lives-go to the gym and workout, yap with friends over coffee in the lounge,  go to lunch, and then pick up the kids from school. What a nice life.

But I’d probably get bored.  I was married and did about a year of that life going to theatre classes and working out.  I got bored so I took  two part-time jobs.  One in an aerobic/dance clothes store, and the other at an advertising agency in the media department. I got divorced after that and when to the CBS tv station.

I was doing very well at the CBS tv station in sales, and I got harassed by a male manager ( who was chased out of the Honolulu market afar his contract was up) so I went on sabbatical for 3 months.  At first it was fun and I really needed the relief from stress.  At the 2 month mark, I was again really bored, so I resigned and took a job that eventually led me to the path of freelancing for the last 10 years!

Back to HW tho.

My mom was a career housewife and still is.  Everyday she roller-skates around the kitchen making breakfast, cleaning up, making lunch, cleaning up, a little computer time and maybe a nap, and making dinner and cleaning up.  My dad helps her out nowadays, so it’s a little easier at dinner. But she also cleans up the house, dad vacuums and I try to help out in the house and the yard when I visit.

Working women and mothers in Hawaii are total heroes.  The quality of our public schools is really terrible so to get their kids ahead in life, there is a very large percentage of women who work full-time and sometimes more to pay for tuition to private schools. Then they come home and many cook dinner and do chores. I’m sure the kids and hubs help out, but I think in my experience of my friends most of them carry the weight.

So what’s the point to this post?  I think that Bravo should retire the HW genre-it’s negative to women in general, and people choose their own paths in life whether they are a housewife and happy or unhappy, or on the career path, and happy or unhappy, or a freelancer who is pretty damn happy.

And I really don’t like their makeup.


Make Me Moist! New Foundation and Sunscreen Options!

My blue-eyed friend informed me he did not use sunscreen on a daily basis. What?! We live in Hawaii with the sun shining on us everyday, having a position close to the equator  – it is pretty brutal.

So, since he’s a guy, I had him try out my Clarins SFP40-my fave-it goes under makeup really well, very light, not greasy, and doesn’t feel like it has fine grains of something that some blocks have. For guys, it has a very light but pleasant fragrance.

Tooling around Nordstroms, where as usual, no one is at the counter at Clarins, Kiehls, Bobbi etc. Doesn’t matter.  I know what I want.

But I do see something new on the counter – Clarins has made their super wonderful spf40 sunscreen in tints!  They offer light, medium and dark in the same silky liquid formula. Since no one was around, I helped myself to a sample.  I’m wondering at the same time, if this is why Nordstroms leaves out their sample pots – for whatever reason, the salespeople are rarely at their stations.  I can’t ding my friend there because it was her day off.

I see the Revive’ product rep, Crystal, and ask her to help me buy the regular formula Clarins.  She highly recommended the Cleau De Peau spf50 sunscreen and gave me a sample.  I asked, you recommend this over Revive? She said yes because the Revive’ packaging is being changed because customers can’t use the entire product without taking out the pump.  Nearly half the product is wasted.  Be on the lookout for new packaging. At $95 a bottle-I’m sure we all want to use it to the last drop!

A few days prior, I was browsing to check out new stuff–at Laura Mercier I saw they had new foundation in both oil free and moisture formulas.  Moisture Supreme (pronounced suh-prem) is another dream product!  I used it over my regular regimen of Kiehl’s Power Line, Rosa Artica and Clarins spf40, and wore it for an entire day without feeling dry.  Awesome!

I had tried Laura Mercier’s tinted radiance moisturizer and decided I didn’t like to be that shimmery.  When the Revive’ guys came, I saw that the Revive’ girls were all wearing it-I could tell by the shimmery effect it has.  It reminds me of those horrible mother of pearl products brought out maybe 10 years ago that gave you a radiant look, but really if you look at it in the sun it looks weird and fakey. Sorry Laura.

I’m sitting writing this with the Clarins tinted spf40 on and it feels and looks great.  I’ll post again at how it wears during the day.  What’s more, because it’s tinted with just enough pigment you can tell if you’re getting your face covered with the sunscreen protection.

On men sunscreen.  I also checked out Facial Fuel by Kiehls – it is liquid, but it has a chalky texture and a not unpleasant, but somewhat chemical scent.  The Clinique men’s line, carried in NM but not Nordstrom, is pretty nice.  Packaged in sort of a gunmetal color, “M” line offers everything the same as the “women’s” line.  Plus they had some interesting sunscreens that were on the men’s counter.  Smelled pretty good.  I would use them.

That said, Clinique Super Defense spf25 is really great.  The other products don’t have treatment, but Super Defense is also anti-aging and moisturizing.

So, that and that said, if you’re sitting inside with a lot of windows and sunlight, make sure you use your sunscreen! Even on overcast days!


I’m in Love with Rosa

It’s really kind of hard to believe that I found a product that is so perfect that I can’t stray.  I have lots of samples from Lancome, Sulwasoo, Orlane et al.

But I come back to Kielhl’s Rosa Artica cream.  Much like the texture and consistency of La Mer, at $60 a jar it is so much more affordable and works so well at moisturizing my face all day and into the night!

I had a few days where I was using a Lancome Renergie’ sample-and though it smells good-it nowhere nearly moisturizes as well as Rosa Artica.

I’ve turned on a few friends to this wonder product and they are firm believers as well.

Happy Moisturizing!


Overnight-The Away Kit

There comes a moment in a new relationship when one needs to think about what they would need for an overnight – or at least be prepared.  Men have it easy, they just fall out of bed and they pretty much look the same.

My routine is floss, brush, moisturizer super boosted with Philosophy Vitamin C powder, sunscreen, primer, foundation.  Eyebrows, shadow,liner, mascara.  Blush, lip and Makeup Forever HD Powder.

That’s a lot of stuff to carry around.  How to simplify?  Sometimes when I visit my folks in Maui, I get there and realize I forgot something fairly critical like cleanser.

Got the answer for that.  These nifty face wipes I got at the Face Shop.  Gentle, herbal and they take off makeup with no rubbing!  I don’t like those baby oil wipes-makes my face greasy and that’s one more step to tone.  These herbal wipes are one step, no oil, very freshening and only $2 for 20 wipes!

On any given day, I have so much stuff that I carry around that I got a locker at the gym because my shoulder was hurting from carrying my dance bag, my clothes and my makeup, hair stuff and whatever else. I think my makeup kit all by itself is 4-5 pounds.  I offloaded the hair stuff which would be the Kitoko Oil and Neuma cocktail ingredients, plus three types of lotion, one being Kiehl’s spf30 Body Lotion (smells like coconuts), Johnson&Johnson 24 Hour Moisture, and Bliss Lemon and Sage.

My back feels a lot better.

What can I get away with for an impromtpu overnight? I like to visualize processes and do a walk through so I can figure out what I need.  Will it fit in my purse?

Face wipes-makeup remover, moisturizer w spf, floss, toothbrush, toothpaste, elastic for my hair. Maybe BB cream, mascara, eyebrow stuff, liner, rose balm.

Believe it or not, most of this stuff would fit in the bag I carry around.

There’s also a thought process into what I wear the night before that doesn’t make me walk the walk of shame!  Remember Carrie from Sex in the City walking home in her evening clothes at 7a in the morning when she runs into Miranda?

That’s another post.