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Archive for the ‘Beauty’ Category

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I’m Glowing

Thursday, August 18th, 2011

I’m generally content in my paleness. I’ve accepted that sun makes me pink, not a dreamy bronze. And I’ve seen too many bad orange tans and sit-com mishaps to bother with spray tans. But after talking to Melanie Richards about her new mobile air brush tanning business, Glow, I decided to give it a try, and I must say, I can see how it could become a habit. There’s no mess – she brings a tent that you stand in. No stains – the solution dries in seconds, and can be applied clear (without bronzer) if don’t need instant gratification. She takes extra care to contour arms, abs and legs so the color lands where it will enhance (“tan what you can’t tone!”), and goes light on hands, knees and other parts where too much saturation would look funny. Within a couple of hours, my skin looked how I always wish it would after a day on the beach.

This week is the perfect time to give it a try: Glow is offering readers a Swag deal: $32.50 for a custom tan when you have a group of two or more. (Normally, individual sessions are $65, and groups are $45 per person). Mention the Swag Deal when you call for an appointment, now through Monday. 952-500-0458.

Guys Who Groom Together…

Monday, August 15th, 2011

Even more surprising than happening upon new men’s salon Gent at Victoria’s Crossing in St. Paul on Saturday: the place was hopping. One guy practiced on the putting green out front while a group of groomsmen sipped mimosas and watched sports highlights on the flatscreen. They were waiting for wedding day straight razor shaves.

The owner’s story is a familiar one: Local guy, unsatisfied with discount barber shops, but uncomfortable in girly salons. He’s created an upscale, masculine setting with haircuts starting at $29 (gray “blending” starts at $35). The staff includes both barbers and stylists. The salon is stocked with man toys: drinks, iPads, TVs.

Seems like a great idea, yet similar concepts for men have failed. One of the main Twin Cities competitors at the moment, Raze – with two west metro locations, is backed by behemoth Regis Corp.

Still, Gent has a great vibe. I like the decision to place it on Grand Avenue in St. Paul, where shoppers embrace local and men often get short shrift. What could give Gent that extra edge is retail. The front of the shop features cuff links and Leatherman tools. Grooming lines include Jack Black and Joe. Nothing too fancy or fussy – just cool stuff for men who care. Yes, guys, it’s cool to care. 867 Grand Ave., St. Paul, 651-797-4294

Time for a Spa Deal?

Thursday, August 11th, 2011

We expect salon/spa pricing to vary based on the stylist or technician’s experience. But what about time of day? The newly remodeled New Reflections Spa Salon in Plymouth recently  introduced spa flex pricing. Patrons now pay a premium for the most popular time slots, and get a break at off hours. So, a 60-minute massage might be $60 at 3 p.m. on a Wednesday, and $75 at noon on a Saturday. I’ve noticed more salons and spas offering last minute deals, often via Facebook and Twitter, for open appointments, but I like the idea of institutionalizing it – the New Reflections price sheet indicates premium and off hours. No coupons required or social networking required. Consumers love a price break, and the spa is creating better odds of filling slow times. What do you think?  Plymouth Town Center, 3530 Vicksburg Lane – Suite 400m Plymouth, 763-559-3185

Lifecycle of a Trend: Feather Extensions

Thursday, June 16th, 2011

Trends come and trends go – usually on an accelerated pace at a magazine office. (Oh, the pressure.) We’ve come to expect globetrotting Sky style editor Liz Doyle will be first with the trend – and first to declare it O.V.E.R. Which is what she did today. So fly, fly away feather hair extensions. (Alert Steven Tyler!) It’s been a swell, silly, ride. A look at how it went down:

November, 2010: Liz sees the trend in Los Angeles
December, 2010: Liz orders feathers from
February, 2010: Back in L.A. for a photo shoot, she gets them done professionally
May, 2011: MplsSt.Paul Magazine does a story on feather extensions. Shortage of feathers at beauty stores and fly fishing shops (Not saying former caused latter, but feel free to draw your own conclusions)
June, 2011: A MplsSt.Paul senior editor’s 7-year-old gets feather extensions
Trend done, and fly fishermen are pissed
Of course, that’s now. Liz says she’s saving her feathers – “in case they are cool in a year or so.”

Unmentionables Closing

Tuesday, June 7th, 2011

Extrados has closed its Wayzata location, home to the Unmentionables lingerie boutique and brow/facial services. It was simply an economic decision, a spokeswoman for the company says. The lingerie business has been lagging and it made sense to consolidate spa services at the main Extrados location in Linden Hills. Of course, owner and brow guru Leah Simon-Clarke built her clientele in Wayzata and has a loyal following, so don’t be surprised if she pops up in the western ‘burbs again.

See Rihanna’s…

Monday, June 6th, 2011

Jon Charles called me the other day sounding giddy, which is not an unusual state for the salon owner, who always has something cooking. Since famed stylist Oribe visited the Jon Charles Salon in Wayzata a few months ago (watch it here), the two have gotten quite chummy. And how do two fabulous salon men share there admiration? With a wig, of course! Not just any wig: Oribe has given Jon Rihanna’s wig, which the singer/cover girl wore in the April issue of Vogue. It’s now on display, in all it’s glory, at the Jon Charles Salon in Uptown. Quirky? For sure. But that’s what we love about Jon – he knows how to seize a Hollywood moment.

Thumbs Up for Mint Green

Sunday, April 10th, 2011

Spring may be all about coral, but I’ve been rocking mint green polish since returning from spring break, and I’ve never more compliments on my nails. It’s Essie Mint Candy Apple (actually came out in 2009). There’s something surprising and serene about the shade, and it seems to enhance what little is left of my tan. You could say I’ve got the beach at my fingertips.

Cheating on Bobbi Brown

Wednesday, April 6th, 2011

Forgive me, Bobbi Brown. I didn’t intend to cheat. You’ve been a loyal ally – getting me through many an exhausting day with your enlightened Corrector and Creamy Concealer. Of course, I’ll never forget the day I first brushed cheeks with your SPF15 Tinted Moisturizer. It gave me exactly what I, a foundation avoider, needed: Sheer, natural-looking coverage. I tried to ignore the advances of Clinique’s new Moisture Surge Tinted Moisturizer SPF15, but, gosh, everyone’s been raving and, frankly, it’s nearly half the price ($24.50 vs. $40). I could not suppress the urge to check it out, and I’ve got to say – it is not just a cheap substitute. It goes on sheer, just like you, and gives me that little bit of coverage, smoothing and brightening I crave. I hope we can stay friends.

Macy’s Beauty Impulse

Thursday, March 3rd, 2011

Macy’s is expanding its youthful, contemporary Impulse concept from fashion to beauty. A new Impulse Beauty department will showcase brands like Urban Decay, Stila, Too Faced, Essie and others. Mall of America will be the first (and so far only) location to get the new department. It is scheduled to open April 2 with a party, including beauty tips from pros and special gifts with purchase.

Meanwhile, Macy’s downtown Minneapolis store no longer carries Nanette Lepore. Nor does the “flagship” boast the new Bar III department for young shoppers. Increasingly, you’ve got to go to the ‘burbs to get the good stuff.

Ahhh. Smells Like Summer

Wednesday, March 2nd, 2011

I’m moisturizing my dry, pasty hands with the new Mandarin Coriander hand cream from Minneapolis-based Thymes. The blend of cold-pressed mandarin oil, just-peeled orange essence, and coriander is a welcome escape from winter. It’s fresh without overwhelming. The collection includes hand wash, lotion, home fragrance mist, all purpose cleaner and a sink set, all priced from $10 to $32. In stores now.

Locally, find the best selection at Garden of Eden, 867 Grand Ave., St. Paul – now home to the Thymes’ first store-with-in-a-store.

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