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Rolling in a 2015 Cadillac ATS

The 2015 Cadillac ATS
The 2015 Cadillac ATS

Please indulge me and excuse this new post, I know it is not beauty related but it did help me appreciate the beauty that is in my own backyard…so to speak.

I was contacted on behalf of GM and asked if I’d like to drive a car from their fleet for a few days. I would be given a full tank of gas and the keys to do as I chose and just enjoy the car. How could I say no to that? I picked this sexy beast of a car, the Cadillac ATS, and opted for a couple quick, local getaways instead of a long road trip.

Inside the 2015 Cadillac ATS
Inside the 2015 Cadillac ATS

Until a few months ago, I drove a 2005 Hyundai Accent that I abused horribly. I would probably still be driving it if I didn’t mind living with the anxiety that the car could die on me at any moment because let’s face it, not having a car payment is amazing…opens up the budget for more beauty products. 😉

Then I bought a 2009 Toyota Corolla and it seemed like the mother of all upgrades at the time. From manual windows to power windows and power locks, I felt like I was finally driving an adult car… That is until I got behind the wheel of the ATS, my mind was blown. It was fully loaded and jam packed with features I couldn’t even imagine wanting but now am longing to have again.

Steering Wheel and Dashboard of the Cadillac ATS
Steering Wheel and Dashboard of the Cadillac ATS
Center Console of the Cadillac ATS
Center Console of the Cadillac ATS

The features in this car amazing; the one I liked the most was the heads-up pop-up display on the windshield. I always knew how fast I was going or what song was playing on the radio. The easy Bluetooth integration was a breeze to setup and use. As I had a little time with this Cadillac, I decided to go on a few trips with it. I went north to Mount Vernon, WA to check out the Tulip Festival then east to check out Snoqualmie Falls, which I’m embarrassed to say was my first time there being a Seattle native. On each trip, the ATS handled amazingly well and was super comfortable for myself and the friends and family riding with me on each trip.

Tulips at Roozengaarde Farms
Tulips at Roozengaarde Farms in Mount Vernon, WA
Freeman Tulips at Roozengaarde Farms
Freeman Tulips at Roozengaarde Farms in Mount Vernon, WA

My first trip was to Mount Vernon, WA for the Skagit Valley Tulip Festival with my family. This festival is something I mean to do every year but always end up putting it off for one reason or another. With the warm winter we had, the tulips started blooming earlier than normal so we were right at the end of their life span but there was still plenty of gorgeous tulips to take in.

I had no idea there were so many different varieties of tulips. My favorite is the Freeman tulip, with its ruffled edges, it reminds me a peony but only with more vibrant color.

To stand in a field of tulips like this and take in all that vibrant color around you is just so uplifting. You can’t help but have a smile on your face.

Snoqualmie Falls
Snoqualmie Falls Park in Snoqualmie, WA

The next day we headed east and went to Snoqualmie Falls. As someone who was raised in Seattle, to not have visited the falls before is a bit of a travesty especially considering how close this is.

We started at the Snoqualmie Falls park and walked along the trail taking the view in. The falls are breathtaking and not even in full swing here, I’m definitely going back to see the falls in all their glory.

One thing I’m very grateful for is the curiosity my time with the Cadillac ATS has instilled in me. These getaways were quick and both about an hour outside of Seattle. What else have I missed out on that is right in my backyard? My Corolla and I will definitely find out and explore.

The Cadillac ATS and My Toyota Corolla
The Cadillac ATS and My Toyota Corolla – I will miss you, Cadillac ATS!

The Cadillac ATS drove like a dream. The way it handled on curves and at higher speeds was impressive. When I got the ATS on the freeway and really let her rip, I felt the power in the ATS immediately. She is just so powerful and you really feel that when you accelerate, it picks up and goes instantly. The ride is just so smooth.

It is also quite possibly the most comfortable car I have ever been in. As a driver, you are totally catered to with lumbar support and every feature right at your fingertips. The same is also true as a passenger. From individual temperature controls to the seats themselves, riding in the Cadillac ATS is like riding in your own personal cocoon. The seat just cradles you and wraps you up in it.

The Cadillac was picked up a week ago today and when I got back into my Corolla, I instantly missed the ATS and was almost disappointed in my car lack of cool features. It has definitely given me a lot of think about when the time to upgrade comes around…which may be a little sooner than previously planned now. 🙂

Everything Old Becomes New Again

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Let the planning of 2015 begin!

They say that if you hang on to a piece of clothing long enough, the old style will become new again. I’m thinking the same can be true for Product Girl in 2015. After a long absence from this blog, this year one of my resolutions is to get to basics and blog like I use to when I first started out almost ten years ago. Back when I blogged about the beauty products I was using simply because I loved them.

Somewhere along the way, I lost the excitement I once had for the beauty world. I use to be able to tell you what year a MAC lipstick was released and what collection it was part of. I could recall what shades were limited edition and what was a repromote. I was a die hard beauty fanatic, going to Nordstrom and Sephora to see what was new just for fun. At one point I would even have a sketch book with swatches of my eyeshadow and lipsticks for comparison. I was that serious about it.

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Rings, Rings, Rings!

rings

Lately I’ve been obsessed with collecting rings. I started with those stretchy rings, you know the kind, the one-size fits all type that are more clunky than functional. Then as I started losing some weight, I realized my fingers were becoming a little more slender as well. That’s when it became time to venture out into rings that were actually sized instead of hanging together with string… I’m a size 8, in case anyone is curious. 😉

These days my favorite type of rings are the stackable kind, collecting simple bands in different tones to put together. Maybe one has a small gem set in, maybe it is just a simple, plain rose gold band. I love the way the different metals, shapes and settings come together to create a unique, eclectic look. I’m also obsessed with rings that take on different geometric shapes, ones that appear to be cut out really have me at hello.

I appreciate different colored gemstones but for my taste, I’d rather keep it simple and go with more traditional gemstones than something bright and in your face… not to say that bright doesn’t have its time and place. Simple pieces in silver and yellow gold, those are more my style.

How about you? How do you rock your rings? One on each finger? A couple on each hand or none at all?

How to Achieve Bone Health and Strength

If you have weak or brittle bones, then you may be the victim of fractures, strains or sprains in your ankles. It’s more common than you might think, in fact; osteoporosis affects about 44 million people living in the United States and is the cause of about 2 million bone fractures annually. If you suffer from severe pain in your ankles due to injury then you may want to consider surgery as an option. If your injuries tend to be minor and not overly painful then there are many things you can do to increase your overall bone strength. Here is a guide to get you started.

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Common Fur Storage Mistakes To Avoid

When people are preparing to buy luxurious fur items, they usually think about how great that mink vest will look or how many years that shearling coat will stay stylish.  Something that most people don’t think twice about is how they will store their fur garment during the portion of the year when they can’t wear it.  However, proper care is crucial when you own a fur garment.  Here are a few common storage mistakes to steer clear of if you want your furs to look gorgeous and lush for years.

Storing at the Wrong Temperature and Humidity  

Most people know that fur needs to be stored in a cool environment — in fact, professional fur storage is refrigerated to between 40 and 50 degrees.  Cool temperatures have a preserving effect.  However, many people don’t appreciate the fact that the environment also needs to have the right humidity level.  You can’t, for instance, store your fur in a normal refrigerator or cooler at home, because the humidity levels are too high.  Air conditioning systems like swamp coolers also make the average home humidity level too great for furs.  In general, you don’t want humidity above 55 percent, or your garment could rot or mildew.

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Mixing Things Up with Makeup Bingo

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An elegant remedy for makeup ruts

There’s just no getting around the simple fact that the vast majority of women in the world will never leave the house without makeup on. In a comprehensive survey authorized by well-known Harley Street beauty clinic Specialist Makeup Services, the average British woman will spend around 474 days of her life putting on cosmetics. This further breaks down into three hours and 19 minutes of applying makeup every week. The same survey also revealed that most British women take up to 17 minutes just preparing the eye area. Thankfully, a woman’s makeup routine doesn’t have to be so time-consuming all the time.

Makeup Bingo is a clever variation of Wardrobe Bingo, which is widely hailed as a fantastic solution for getting over style ruts and fashion funks. Instead of clothes, Makeup Bingo players must gather five items from categories such as foundation, lipstick, blush, and eyeliner/mascara/eye shadow. Much like Wardrobe Bingo, the entire point of Makeup Bingo is to occasionally shake things up a bit and maybe discover some surprising combinations. Simply put, it’s supposed to be a fun diversion. This same concept of fun can also be seen in modern-day TV ads from online bingo companies. Leading UK portal, CheekyBingo has even collaborated with the Frontroom creative agency to help the brand stand out through catchy TV ads for their fashion-centric promos and giveaways. Moreover, the same online bingo brand recently gave away £50 shopping vouchers through its Twitter account to lure in the female demographic. They also welcome pictures from their Twitter followers whenever there are celebrity fashion gatherings or followers have engaged in games of Makeup Bingo. The brand, retweets there followers submissions on a daily basis, and sometimes give out prizes for the most lubricious Makeup Bingo pictures.

So if you want to enjoy the game, on the whole, the rules of Makeup Bingo are pretty simple. After assembling all the makeup items from each category, label each item from 1 to 5 (or B-I-N-G-O, if you prefer). Players will then draw numbers (or letters) at random to eventually come up with some startling mashups. All told, Makeup Bingo allows players to look at their cosmetics in a different light.

Kenzo’s KenzoAmour Le Parfum

Even though we’re now into spring, it doesn’t mean you have to put your warmer scents away… besides, there’s still a little chill in the air in some places. 🙂

kenzo-kenzoamour-le-parfum That’s where Kenzo’s KenzoAmour Le Parfum comes in. You may be thinking… “Hmm, that looks just like that other Kenzo perfume!” Yeah, it does but this one is different. While the bottle’s shape remains the same, it’s color is inspired by temples in SE Asia and features ingredients coveted in the region.  This version is richer and spicier than the previous version making it a great woody oriental fragrance.

I found the incense and patchouili notes to be more prominent here. This makes the original seem much sweeter and powdery than this newer version in comparison. I use to think that the original was as warm as I wanted to go but now I know I can go warmer. 🙂

Kenzo’s KenzoAmour Le Parfum still shares some of the same notes as the original such as the rice steam top note, frangipani flower middle note and vanilla base note. It also adds some new notes to the mix such as a top note of incense, amber and patchouli to the middle and benzoin balm as a base.

If you’re looking for a fragrance that’s warmer and a little more intense, give this one a try. For me, my favorite Kenzo fragrances are florals but I’m to have tried this one, it’s gotten me out of my perfume rut.

We’ll be back with more on Kenzo’s new fragrances next week!

Josie Maran’s Earth Day Essentials Green on the Go Kit

josie-maran-earth-day-essentials-green-on-the-go-kit Earth Day is later this month (April 22nd to be exact!) but it’s never too early to get in the spirit. This new set from Josie Maran is willing to help you out with that. 🙂

The Josie Maran Earth Day Essentials Green on the Go Kit includes some of the line’s best selling products and is a great way to get started with a good eco-friendly line if you’re trying to go green with your makeup.

This kit includes Josie’s Organic Argan Oil, a Plumping Lip Gloss in Daring (sheer shimmering rosy nude), a Cream Blush in Sunrise (soft pink), a Mascara in Black and an Eye Liner in Black.

Have you tried some of the products from Josie Maran’s line? We want to hear what you think! Let us know in the comments.

Jurlique’s Biodynamic Beauty Serum: Genie in a Bottle

Somehow in my mind the word “serum’ registers as intense treatment…worth more money… more active than a lotion or cream. I’m not totally sure that this is true but it has me always on the hunt for a new miracle in a bottle.

jurlique-biodynamic-beauty-serum A few months back I started using Jurlique’s Biodynamic Beauty Serum and I have to say it’s been true love ever since. I can’t remember the last time I was faithful enough to one product to actually empty the bottle!  I usually find I’m on to something else about half way through (glad I’m not like this with men or it would have been tough keeping married). Well not only have I stayed faithful and emptied my bottle but another one is in my cart right now on Sephora.com.

I’ve mentioned in my writing that I have rosacea so many products don’t work for me at all due to inflaming my skin etc. I’ve been using the serum pre-moisturizer, it sinks in really quick with no greasy feeling, doesn’t clog my pores and has no dimethicone which gives that smooth slip like a primer, I personally don’t like that…I want my skin to breathe. What I do like is that my skin feels really hydrated and calm like it just got a big drink of water. I’ve also noticed that my skintone and texture seem smoother and more consistent. I still need a moisturizer on top of the serum but it’s like the two things are working synergistically together, giving me a great base to apply my makeup too or even the option to wear none since my skin isn’t beet red from irritation.

So far I have only used Jurlique’s serum but I am dying to try other products in the line especially the Herbal Recovery Gel and some of there moisturizers. I tend to like the thought of using more natural or organic skincare since I think those with rosacea are more sensitive to chemicals but of course am searching for products that still perform. Well take a look at Jurlique because the ingredients are cleaner than most and my first impression is that this could be my dream line.

Clean and Easy’s Facial Waxer

I have a bit of a weakness for waxing kits. Like my obsession with lip stains, I tend to try out new waxing kits whenever I see them. When I saw Clean & Easy’s Facial Waxer, it seemed like a really easy way to take care of my needs… and just maybe I could stop buying those stupid wooden popsicle sticks.

clean-easy-facial-waxer

At first, the Clean & Easy’s Facial Waxer looks like a great system… for about $15 you get 2 vials of wax, strips, an after waxing treatment and a wax warmer that plugs into any outlet and heats your wax up in 15 minutes. This would even be easy to travel with but what appealed to me was the roll-on cap you add to the vial of wax. Wouldn’t it be nice if waxing was as easy as rolling on some wax? That doesn’t happen with this product.

When put to use, unfortunately this product turned out to be more of an inconvenience that I thought it would be. I was expecting to be able to use the wax in just 15 minutes but really, it took twice as long for the wax to warm up to a consistency that would spread well. As soon as I started trying to apply the wax, I knew I was in trouble. The wax would jamb up the wheel in the roll-on tip or it would get stuck on an area I had already applied wax to. It was only a matter of minutes before I got frustrated and gave up. Then came removing the wax, the strips included with the Clean & Easy’s Facial Waxer barely stuck to the wax.

For all I know, the wax may have been great but the frustration with everything else is hard to overlook. Bottom line? It looks like I’m back to wooden popsicle sticks and my beloved Poetic Waxing kit.