Archive for 2017

Recent Loves

August 21, 2017

This is where I talk about some of the beauty products I've been loving lately...

Ji Chang Wook's Military Enlistment

August 18, 2017
Ji Chang Wook, Ji Chang Wook Military, Ji Chang Wook 2017, Ji Chang Wook Haircut,  지창욱

It's no secret that Ji Chang Wook is a favorite around here so of course I had to acknowledge the news of his formal enlistment for his mandatory military service in the South Korean army. Chang Wook had announced that this would be happening during the run of his last drama Suspicious Partner and has been making preparations since the show wrapped. In between a farewell tour with appearances on various programs, the 30 year old actor had also been getting his affairs in order and spending as much time as possible with his mother and friends.

10 Foods That Offer Sun Protection

August 16, 2017
Food for Sun Protection, Sun Protecting Foods, Foods That Will Protect You From The Sun

A major factor of skincare is diet and what we put into our bodies is just as important as what we put onto it. The food we eat can contribute to the body’s ability to produce collagen and elastin which contribute to the hydration levels of our skin and can also work to inhibit enzymes that cause wrinkles and aging.  Choosing the right foods is the difference between clear, luminous and firm skin or wrinkled, loose and sagging skin.

How The 7 Skin Method Improved My Skin

August 14, 2017
What Is the 7 Skin Method, Korean Skincare, Skincare, K Beauty,

Since I mentioned my love for toners last week, I wanted to talk about the 7 Skin Method which is a major reason that toner is an integral step in my skincare routine. A K-Beauty trend,  the 7 Skin Method is a process in which a toner or lightweight essence is successively applied to the face for up to seven times immediately after cleansing and before moisturizing. It is called "7 Skin" because he word for toner and "skin" are the same in Korea. So it is effectively the 7 Toner Method.

Current Mood

August 11, 2017

Listening...  to the Suspicious Partner soundtrack. How Do I Say It by O When is my favorite track.

YESSTYLE Sweet Spring Makeup Kit Beauty Box

August 9, 2017
YESSTYLE Korean Beauty Box, YesStyle Sweet Spring Makeup Kit, Asian Beauty, K-beauty, Asian Beauty Box,YESSTYLE review Beauty Box Review, #YesStyle #YSBeautyBox17

Well before Asian beauty products were more easily accessible like they are these days, there was YesStyle. was one of the first global online retailers to offer fashion, beauty and lifestyle products from Korea, Japan, Taiwan and more. I've shopped on and off from them for a number of years and I also unboxed a previous YesStyle Beauty Box here before.

MUN Skin Care Anarose Hydrating Rose Toner

August 7, 2017
MUN Anarose Hydrating Rose Toner, MUN Anarose Hydrating Rose Toner Review, MUN Skincare, MUN Toner Review
"The right toner gives the skin a healthy glow and fresh feeling after cleansing and throughout the day. 
It provides the foundation for a deeper penetration of your serum or moisturizer. "

Ever since I got into Asian skincare, toners have been an indispensable step in my beauty regimen. Prior to that, I hadn't used toner in a number of years because my previous experience with them involved wiping a toner soaked cotton ball all around my face and bracing as it would sting and remove every last trace of dirt and oil off my skin. Of course that was when my skin was on the oily and I didn't know better. I've since learned that toners can serve a purpose and it's not to strip your skin but rather to treat, balance and hydrate. These days I have a small collection of toners that I rotate accordingly to address the needs of my skin. In the morning I prefer a hydrating toner to prep my skin for makeup. In the evenings, depending on how my skin is acting and what it needs, I like to switch between a calming toner or one that has exfoliating properties while delivering moisture to ready my skin for my evening skincare routine. MŪN Skin Care Anarose Hydrating Rose Toner is a multi-tasking product that ticks off all of these check boxes which is why it's been a favorite of mine this summer.

Through My Lens : Recently On Instagram

August 4, 2017

A few highlights from the past month as seen on Instagram which serves as my unofficial food diary and love letter to NYC. I also post quick reviews here and there. I generally try to keep the content unique so it's not just a bunch of photos from here. You can see more on Instagram and do follow if you like what you see...

  • Just a slice of life in NYC.
  • The Emmy burger I featured in my review of Emily has been turned into a special dumpling at Mimi Cheng's Dumplings and it is delicious while also capturing the flavors of the burger. It's been such a hit that they've extended it's run for another month.
  • I couldn't resist picking up boxes of the Patchology Illuminate FlashMasque and Leaders Amazonian Acai Anti-Pollution sheet masks when I spotted them at bargain prices at TJ Maxx. They're both quite good too!
  • Found my favorite new summer treat in Pressed Juicery's matcha freeze. It's totally no guilt and low sugar since it's frozen green juice. And yes it does taste good.
  • I never pass up a chance to take in an elevated view of the city.
  • Humblefish might be displacing Chikarashi as my favorite neighborhood poké spot and they deliver to us. The Classic is delicious especially with purple rice. You can also sub for quinoa or zucchini noodles. 
  • I love my cushions and this April Skin Magic Snow Cushion White is a current favorite.
  • Had a fun get together with friends at Barn Joo where we tried a number of tasty dishes. The kimchi bacon pancake was a a personal favorite. I make bacon kimchi fried rice and I can't believe I never thought to do a pancake. I cooked up one at home last weekend. It's an amazing pairing since the smoky flavor of the bacon really brings out the taste of the kimchi.
  • I also never pass up a chance to take in a view of the city from the water.

Up Close With The Pamella Roland Resort 2018 Collection

August 2, 2017
Pamella Roland, Pamella Roland Resort, Pamella Roland Resort Collection, Pamella Roland 2018

Following up my feature on the Pamella Roland Resort 2018 Collection, I wanted to turn the spotlight on the hair and makeup and provide a better view of the Bvlgari jewels that adorned the models. Marshall Lin of Frédéric Fekkkai created an updated take on the sleek and polished hair look made popular by Cher in the 70's. The models sported straight blowouts with middle parts to complement the elegant looks of the collection. Rick DiCecca, Global Makeup Artist for Artistry designed a makeup look with defined eyes with long lashes and soft neutral lids paired with berry stained lips and soft rosy cheeks atop a glowing complexion that looked lit from within. The look was quite polished and evoked a sense of glamour and sophistication to echo the fashions. Since the presentation was staged at Bvlgari, the fashions were accessorized with jewelry from the Italian luxury brand. The sparkling baubles were just as eye-catching as the sparkling fashions and a few of the models I spoke with told me they were a dream to wear. The center part might be a little difficult to pull off for most of us but otherwise the hair and makeup look to be very pretty and wearable. 

Pamella Roland, Pamella Roland Resort, Pamella Roland Resort Collection, Pamella Roland 2018

Pamella Roland Resort 2018

July 31, 2017
Pamella Roland, Pamella Roland Resort, Pamella Roland Resort Collection, Pamella Roland 2018

The Pamella Roland Resort 2018 collection made it's splendid debut against the opulent backdrop of the Bvlgari Fifth Avenue flagship which was transformed into a lush botanical wonderland with servers circling the room with glasses of Veuve Cliquot and hors d'oeuvres in hand. The exclusive presentation included 30 looks from the collection, each of which was accompanied by a touch of sparkle courtesy of Bvlgari and the fashions shined as much as the jewelry in the surrounding display cases.

In a slight departure from her usual artistic influences, designer Pamella DeVos was inspired by the garden of her Bay Harbor, Michigan lakeside residence for this collection. The brand's sumptuous gowns took on a floral toned palette that included geranium red, pale yellow, blush pink and violet along with flowery watercolor prints. Particularly striking were the dresses adorned with 3D floral appliqués that looked like they were fresh from the garden. Other embellishments included trailing floral embroideries, dainty crystals, sequined fringe and the brand's signature beadwork. Also in the collection were a range of striking black and white creations in streamlined silhouettes featuring sleek ruffle details, cut-outs and thigh high slits. This collection is a luxurious marriage of glamour, femininity and elegance. Pamella Roland is favorite amongst celebrities and I have a feeling we'll be seeing some of these designs gracing various red carpets in the future.

Full disclosure: I attended this show back in early June but didn't get around to finish editing all of my photos until now.  I did mention there were 30 looks right. Stay tuned for my next post for a better view of the hair and makeup and the Bvlgari jewels.

Which looks are catching your eye? I had too many favorites but the first and last were two real standouts. The workmanship was incredible.

Dine Out : Emily

July 28, 2017
Emily,  Emily Pizza, Pizza Loves Emily, Emily NYC, Emily Review

While we still haven't made it to the original Emily in Brooklyn, we did manage to dine at Emily in the West Village not soon after they opened. Both the original and Emmy Squared come from the chef-restaurateur and husband-wife team of Pizza Loves Emily known for their well loved inventive take on Detroit style pizza. This newest location occupies the former home of Blue Ribbon Bakery on a charming corner in the West Village. The restaurant itself is a long narrow bi-level space outfitted with plenty of wood and rustic touches throughout. The bar is situated right inside the entrance and the downstairs dining room offers a view of the pizzas cooking in the wood fired ovens. We were seated in the upstairs dining room which has a decidedly homey vibe. The seating situation is cozy since all the tables are placed in very close proximity to one another. This is typical of many a New York dining establishment.

A Minimal Skincare Routine With Shortlist Beauty

July 24, 2017
Shortlist, Shortlist Serum, Shortlist Cream, Shortlist Review, Shortlist Beauty Review, Less Is More Beauty, Shortlist Skincare

This post is part of a #Shortlist sponsored series for Socialstars™

My beauty routine has always been more focused on skincare than makeup but it has been anything but streamlined. I first introduced first introduced Shortlist Beauty here last month and I took a step in adopting a minimalist approach to skincare with their products. I'm back to talk more about this routine, how I adjusted to it and how it's worked out for my skin.  First things first, the Shortlist regimen consists of just two products: a serum and a cream. I have not given up on washing my face or using toner, masks and eye cream but my multi-step skincare routine has been reduced to just two steps twice a day and it's been quite liberating even though it did take a little getting used to at first.

My Nordstrom Anniversary Sale Wishlist

July 21, 2017
Nordstrom Anniversary Sale, Nordstrom Sale, Nordstrom Online, Nordstrom Promotion, Shop Nordstrom

The Nordstrom Anniversary Sale is a big deal because it's the one time of the year when Nordstrom offers discounts on brand new arrivals. This translates into some incredible sale prices on the upcoming Fall and Winter lines from top brands. I like to take advantage of this sale to stock up and replace classic wardrobe items as well as maybe splurge on a few discounted high end pieces for both myself and my husband. A few home decor items have also caught my eye this time around cause we're in the midst of updating our apartment again. Full disclosure: I already ordered 1, 2, 7 and 12 from this list.

The sale is officially open to the general public today and runs through August 6. Prices go back up after the sale. Sellouts are common so you better act fast if you see something you like. Have you shopped the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale? What are you getting?

1. Via Spiga Hooded Packable Utility Coat
I have a similar jacket that is on it's last legs because I wore it for years. This will be a nice replacement.

2. Natori Feathers Underwire Contour Bra
One of the best bras I've owned in terms of comfort and support and I need a few more.

3. Monica Vinader Riva Kite Diamond Bracelet
Love classic jewelry styles like this that can be worn with practically anything.

4. Vince Camuto Pleat Foiled Knit Skirt
This skirt looks so fun and versatile.

5. Helene Berman Fringe Trim Tweed Jacket
This tweed jacket is such an easy way to add polish to any outfit.

6. Hunter Original Refined Short Rain Boot
I was never into Hunter boots because they looked too clunky but this updated sleek silhouette is anything but.

7. Ted Baker Steam Trim Fit Stripe Dress Shirt
My husband could always use another smart looking shirt and I really like the stripes/dots pattern and color of this one.

8. Bugatchi Plaid Sport Shirt
Because dressing down for guys doesn't have to be sloppy.

9. Bensol Tic Wool Trousers
When I find crisp slim fit, flat front pants like this, I usually buy a few pairs.

10. Boss Water-Repellent Car Coat
The minimalist styling and classic proportions make this the type of coat that can be worn for many years to come.

11. Monogram Bedside Water Carafe Set
This will save me a trip to the kitchen when I wake up in the middle of the tonight and want a drink of water. Nice how this carafe is capped with a drinking glass.

12. Asterism Electric Aromatherapy Diffuser
Our current diffuser has seen better days and this one is just so stylish and elegant.

13. Faux Leather Jewelry Roll
Such a lovely way to keep jewelry organized on the go.

14. Nap More Stress Less Accent Pillow
So fun and graphic and I agree!

15. DKNY Clean Rug
I've been coveting this rug and this is the perfect opportunity to buy it!

Nordstrom Anniversary Sale Beauty Picks

July 19, 2017
Nordstrom Anniversary Sale, Nordstrom Sale, Nordstrom Online, Nordstrom Promotion, Shop Nordstrom

In case you haven't heard, the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale is on! This sale is a real event since it's offers a great chance to score some incredible deals for a limited time and all orders qualify for free shipping and returns. Of course the first thing I had to browse are the Beauty Exclusive and these are some of the items I have my eye on. Since I don't really need anything right now, I'm looking at restocking products that I already use like the Supergoop SPF 50 Antioxidant-Infused Sunscreen Mist with Vitamin C.  We go through a few bottles every summer and this three pack is like 35% off which makes it a fantastic value. The neuLASH Lash Enhancing Serum Duo is like getting one for free. It's a pricey product but it's definitely one of the best lash enhancing products I've ever tried with impressive visible results. The Diptyque Scented Candle SetWinky Lux Your Bestie The Nudes Trio and Skinny Dip Marble Manicure Set would all make terrific gifts. Trust me now is not too soon to start your holiday shopping. I'm almost done with mine.

Nordstrom cardholders get exclusive early access to the sale on July 14th. The Anniversary Sale is open to everyone else on July 21. It’s the biggest sale of the year and these items go fast! Have you shopped this sale?

1. Winky Lux Your Bestie The Nudes Trio
2. NARS Angel Pride Cheek Palette
3. Diptyque Scented Candle Set
4. Supergoop SPF 50 Antioxidant-Infused Sunscreen Mist 3 Pack
5. neuLASH Lash Enhancing Serum Duo
6. GloPRO Microneedling Regeneration Tool for Face & Body
7. Omorovicza Ultramoor Mud Set
8. Skinny Dip Marble Manicure Set

10 Things I Need For The Summer

July 17, 2017
Alexa Chung

I've been looking forward to summer all winter long but now that it's finally arrived, I'm reminded of what I don't enjoy so much about the season - specifically the sweltering heat and getting sweaty and gross. While I can't really avoid the heat entirely, there are things that I can do keep my cool and make the most of summer.

Jane Iredale Pure & Simple Makeup Kit

July 14, 2017
Jane Iredale Pure & Simple Makeup Kit Review, Jane Iredale Review, Jane Iredale Pure & Simple Makeup Kit Swatch, Clean Makeup Palette

I was recently selected by Influenster to receive a Jane Iredale VoxBox with the Jane Iredale Pure & Simple Makeup Kit that includes a PurePressed Base Mineral Foundation, Blush, Eye Shadow, and Just Kissed Lip and Cheek Stain. Jane Iredale is a brand that I've a had a positive impression of since I was first introduced to them at a beauty event hosted by Allure magazine a few years ago. Jane Iredale is a mineral makeup company that blurs the lines between skincare and makeup with a clean and cruelty-free product range that nurtures skin and enhance the lives of their consumers through their effectiveness and simplicity. This same principles have guided their philanthropic efforts which are directed towards causes that help women,  the environment and the arts.

Eye Candy : A Summer Girl

July 12, 2017
Elle France, Elle France A Summer Girl

This Elle France editorial just perfectly captures the carefree spirit of summer. And I'm loving how the effortlessly chic clothing styled on model Adela Stenberg is actually representative of how people dress in real life. I mean I'm all for editorials being extravagant and aspirational but it's also nice to see a reflection of reality from time to time. Do you have a preference?

Elle France July 2017 // Photographer: Rahel Weiss //  Model: Adela Stenberg
Stylist: Virginie Benarroch // Hair: Hélène Bidard // Make-Up: Mayumi Oda

Saromae Quintessential Snail Serum Concentrate

July 10, 2017
 Saromae Quintessential Snail Serum Concentrate Review, SMD Cosmetics, Snail Serum, KBeauty snail product

Hanbang which stands herbal treatment is a holistic form of skincare that has been integral to K-beauty for quite some time since it is based on the healing system of traditional herbal medicine which has been in practice for over 2,000 years. Hanbang skincare is all about creating balance with plant and flower based ingredients like ginseng, green tea, lotus root, ginger and licorice. Popular hanbang beauty brands include Sulwhasoo and History of Whoo while a number of other K-beauty brands like Missha and The Face Shop also have dedicated hanbang lines with their product range. I'm personally a big fan of hanbang beauty because you can't really argue with centuries old wisdom and I have found a number of products which have worked for me. The product I'm reviewing today is a hanbang beauty product that combines herbal medicine science with modern science.

Current Mood

July 5, 2017
Central Park Reservoir

Listening...  to John Park's Do Not Disturb. This song is gonna be my summer jam.

Through My Lens : Recently On Instagram

July 3, 2017
Instagram Recap

A few highlights of the past month as seen on Instagram which serves as my unofficial food diary and love letter to NYC. I also post quick reviews here and there and try to keep my content unique so it's not a bunch of photos from here. You can see more on Instagram and do follow if you like what you see... I've been using Instagram Stories more lately and sharing things like my new haircut, what I'm cooking, double rainbows, etc. Summer is in full effect so I've been getting out more.

  • I always have to stop and admire the cool winding staircase whenever I stop by Barney's New York in Chelsea. Wearing Veja Esplar sneakers and H&M culottes.
  • I love spotting cool fire escapes which are such a integral part of the urban architecture of the city
  • This simple roasted kale and potato with dijon vinaigrette dish is so easy to whip up and a current lunch favorite
  • Yes there is greenery in NYC and Central Park is one of the best places to go enjoy it
  • I broke my sugar ban for the matcha tangerine swirl soft serve at Cha Cha Matcha which tastes like an orange Creamsicle
  • The Empire State Building lit up in rainbow colors in celebration of Pride Week
  • Jewel box sushi that looks as artful as it is delicious
  • Totally loving my Nike Air Max Thea Flyknit Sneakers
  • Floral beauty in the garden downstairs

Happy Independence Day to everyone in the US and a happy new week to everyone else!

Eye Candy : Park Shin Hye for Allure

June 29, 2017
Park Shin Hye, Park Shin Hye Allure,  Park Shin Hye 2017, 박신혜

Park Shin Hye is like a cool summer breeze in the latest issue of Allure Korea. The lovely actress is making a serious dramatic turn in the forthcoming crime thriller Silent Witness playing the daughter of an influential businessman who becomes the prime suspect in the murder of her father's fiancee. This is a remake of the Chinese film of the same name. They seem to like putting hair extensions on Shin Hye for some reason. My favorite photo is the second one where she is rocking the extra long loose braid and diaphanous Giambatista Valli dress. Just exquisite! In the accompanying article, she talks about her love of traveling. She also shares that she likes to stick with the basics when it comes to skincare and how she believes in the importance of moisturizer. Well whatever she's doing is obviously working.

Allure Korea July 2017  // Photographer: Ahn Joo Yung //  Editor: Mi Hyun Lee
Beauty Editor: Kim Mi Gu // Hair: Kim Jung Han // Makeup: Seo Hee Young  // Stylist: Car Star 

Less Is More With Shortlist Beauty

June 26, 2017
 Shortlist, Shortlist Serum, Shortlist Cream, Shortlist Review, Shortlist Beauty Review, Less Is More Beauty, Shortlist Skincare

This post is part of a #Shortlist sponsored series for Socialstars™

I've embraced minimalism in many aspects of my lifestyle and I've managed to scale back to a minimal makeup routine that is just 6 product but when it comes skincare, I can't quite give up my multi-step regimen which currently includes any number of masks, ampoules, essences, serums and creams. And while I generally enjoy the routine, to be honest, there are some times when I wouldn't mind just slapping on one or two products and being done. I mean less is more right with most things right? Why can't it also be that way with skincare?

Shortlist Beauty is a new premium skincare brand that takes a less is more approach and they want to provide a simple remedy to complex skincare with a range consisting of just two products. Yes two. Not only that, the products themselves are formulated with a minimum number of ingredients possible. The brand did extensive research and took only the most effective active ingredients, removing all fillers and unnecessary extras, to create two transformative products. These are zero filler formulas made without any parabens, sulfates, colorants, fragrances, or mineral oils that work to repair damaged skin and help prevent aging. And they are designed to work for ALL skin types and ethnicities.

BRTC Jasmine Waterful Sleeping Pack

June 23, 2017
BRTC Jasmine Waterful Sleeping Pack Review, Sleeping Pack, Sleeping Mask

I love a good sleeping mask! They're such a quick and effortless way to skincare. It's a one step process - just apply before bed and wake up to better skin. I'm a big fan of supplementing my skincare routine with sleeping masks to maximize the natural repair cycle that occurs during sleep. I have a regular rotation of sleeping masks that I've been using but I'm always eager to out new ones and I received this BRTC Jasmine Waterful Sleeping Pack for review from Cupidrop as part of their Beautiful Pioneers program.

Sleeping masks or sleeping packs as they're known in Asia are a popular K-Beauty product. A sleep mask is meant to be applied as a final treatment over your evening skincare as a way to lock in moisture and help your products to absorb better into the skin. You rinse it off the next morning and enjoy the benefits smooth and hydrated skin. Overnight treatment products are often formulated with a high water content so they're more lightweight than night creams and other types of facial mask since they're meant to sink into skin without feeling greasy or leaving residue on your pillow.

Dine Out : Momoya

June 21, 2017
Momoya Review, Momoya New York, Momoya Chelsea

Some restaurants just feel have the feel of a favorite neighborhood spot and Momoya is one of them. The window lined corner space has a clean, modern decor with blond wood accented walls and dark wood tables and floors. The menu features classic Japanese dishes and sushi. I had heard good things about this restaurant before dining here but mostly I wanted to try their Crispy Rice Spicy Tuna, the signature roll with spicy tuna, shiitake, jalapeno atop a bed of crispy sushi rice. This is a specialty roll that I have a mild obsession with. I'm happy to report that it's excellent. Their sushi is fresh and the cooked food options we tried including vegetable tempura and unagi don were well executed and satisfying. The service was warm and attentive enough without being overbearing. The prices are reasonable and offer good value especially during lunch. It's no surprise that the restaurant was packed by the time we finished out meal. If I still lived in Chelsea, I could see myself dining at Momoya quite frequently.

Tip: Momoya does not take reservations so go early. They also have a branch on the Upper West Side.

185 Seventh Avenue
New York City
$$ - $$$

How to Brighten Your Skin With Skincare Products

June 19, 2017
VI Derm Review, VI Derm Vitamin C Gel, VI Derm HQ Plus, VI Derm Clear HQ Free, VI Derm Intense Hydration Serum, Skin Brightening Skincare

Regardless of your skin type, uneven skin tone is one of the most common skin issues that people will experience. Hyperpigmentation can be caused by hormonal fluctuations and/or prolonged exposure to the sun during the summer months. Hyperpigmentation is an excess of brown pigment called melanin that can present on the skin as age spots, liver spots, freckles, melasma and dark spots from UV damage. Post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation occurs when blemishes such as acne turn into dark spots after they have healed.

Exfoliation is one way to achieve a brighter complexion and combat dullness since it increases cell turnover on the topmost layers of the skin. Exfoliation can be done physically with topical exfoliants (scrubs or facial cleansing tools/devices) and microdermabrasion treatments or chemically with products containing glycolic acid, lactic acid or AHA's. Another way is to use brightening products with ingredients that target pigment production. Notable ingredients that are proven to work include vitamin C, arbutin, kojic acid and hydroquinone. It is ideal to combine these methods since exfoliating also helps make the products applied onto the skin penetrate better and thus more more effective.

Food52 Mighty Salads Book Review

June 16, 2017
Food52 Mighty Salads Book, Food52 Mighty Salads Book Review, Food52 Mighty Salads Review

"Does anybody need a recipe to make a salad? Of course not. But if you want your salad to hold strong in your lunch bag or carry the day as a one-bowl dinner, dressing on lettuce isn't going to cut it."

If you follow me on Instagram, you might know about my fondness for Sweetgreen and their salad/grain bowls. After the chain discontinued their Avocobbo which was my husband's favorite, I got the idea that I could make it at home. And from there, I just started making more salad and grain bowls for dinner. This plays well since we embrace being part-time vegetarians. They're ideal both from a healthy eating perspective, easy to make and customize and terrific when it's hot out and I don't necessarily want to cook as much but still want to eat well. I've been doing takes inspired from Sweetgreen as well as favorites like Niçoise Salad, to just throwing things together with whatever's in the fridge. It's worked out pretty well but of course I'm always looking to keep things fresh so I was really excited about this book from the editors of Food52 which is one of my go-to sites for recipes and inspiration.

Currently Coveting

June 14, 2017

I love wearing dresses because they're like a a one and done when it comes to putting together an outfit. They're also such an easy way to look put together when I'm going to an event or out for a date night. These are a few dresses that I currently have my eye on. They're all midi length natch. What are you coveting lately?

1. Apiece Apart Daphne Stripe Midi Dress
This is the type of summer dress I could live in and it's from one of my favorite brands.

2. Ulla Johnson Ariane Striped Cotton Gauze Maxi Dress
The pinafore inspired bodice and ruffled crossover straps really add a special touch.

3. Sea Mixed Print Silk Flutter Dress
The silhouette and pattern mixing really speak to me.

4. Mango Ruffled Midi Dress
The vibrant color and ruffles are a winning combination.

5. J. Crew Ruffle Eyelet Dress
I tried on this dress the last time I was in J. Crew and I ended up buying the skirt of the same fabric. I'm still thinking about the dress though.

6. Embroidered Fable Dress
I'm in love with everything about this floral embroidered maxi dress especially the colors.

7. Self Portrait Cutout Guipure Lace and Broderie Anglaise Dress
So very pretty, pretty pretty!

8. Club Monaco Portuna Dress
This is one of those dresses that would look just as amazing dressed up or down.

10 Habits That Will Help You Sleep Better

June 12, 2017
Habits That Will Help You Sleep Better, Habits for Better Sleep, How To Fall Asleep Faster, Ji Chang Wook in bed, Ji Chang Wook Femina

A good night’s sleep has a multitude of positive benefits for our longtime health, overall mood and general wellbeing. Lack of sleep has been shown to lead to weight gain and mental instability not mention premature aging. Actually getting enough sleep can sometimes be a challenge as there may be any number of factors at any time that can keep you from getting a good night's sleep. While certain factors might be out of our control, there are habits which we can adopt habits that encourage better sleep.

Current Mood

June 9, 2017
ZIIP, ZIIP device, ZIIP Beauty

Super excited about my new ZIIP beauty device! Yes I do buy things off my wish lists! This was a splurge which my enabler husband convinced me to go for. I've only used it once so far with good results and hope to post a full review after I've spent some more time with it.

An Easy Trick To Keep Your Home Clean

June 7, 2017
Stylish Entryway, Shoes Off At Home, Keeping Your Home Clean, Take Off Your Shoes at the door


One thing that never fails to make my husband and I cringe is when we see people on television or in movies walking around their homes in their shoes or worse yet sitting on their bed fully clothed with their shoes on. We both grew up in Asian households where it's customary to remove your shoes at the door. I don't know of any other way and even if I didn't grow up with it I'd probably still do it since it makes all the sense in the world. The streets are a dirty place and since the bottoms of shoes walk over all manner of dirt, germs, excrement particles and goodness knows what else, you're just tracking it all over the place by walking around in your house in them.

And it's probably even worse if you have rugs or carpet. I don't care how clean your house is, it's not really clean if you walk around in your outside shoes. We have a bench/shoe storage unit right by our doorway to facilitate the process. I'm admittedly a little OCD and clean our floors once a week. We like to sit on our floors and visitors won't have to worry about dirty floors. We also keep slippers handy for guests who want to wear them. The only time this doesn't happen is when it's some type of service or delivery person and in that case and we line the floors with newspaper or plastic. By that same token, we also never sit on the bed in our outside clothes or put our bags on our counters, tables or chairs.

Do you take your shoes at home off? Why/why not?

The lucky winner of the Fresh Sugar Lip Set giveaway is Regine K! Congratulations!

Stylish Entryway, Shoes Off At Home, Keeping Your Home Clean, Take Off Your Shoes at the door

Getting Organized With The Erin Condren LifePlanner

June 5, 2017
Erin Condren LifePlanner Review, Erin Condren Life Planner, Erin Condren, Erin Condren Review, Erin Condren 2018 LifePlanner

I think I'm a pretty organized in general but I could always use a little help. As a freelance photographer/consultant/writer, I always have projects, appointments and deadlines to track and stay on top off. I've been using a digital organizing app which I supplement with a notebook because there are certain things that I just need to write down. It may sound archaic in this day and age but it just works better for me to have a written to-do list because it reinforces the tasks I have to get done and writing things down also works as a memory device for me.

Enter the Erin Condren LifePlanner™...  I've seen these around and now that I have my very own, I get why this is such a must have organizational tool for so many people. And what's really cool is that there are so many different options available to suit any number of needs.

New Additions To My Closet

June 2, 2017
Closet additions

I've been mostly shopping my own closet for the past year but following a seasonal closet cleanout, I did a little shopping IRL.  I'm still all about building a timeless wardrobe and adhering to only buying strategic pieces that are classic, versatile and work with existing pieces already in my closet. I actually didn't own much black so I've been slowly working in more. And when the weather warms up, I pretty much live in dresses and skirts. Midi has been my preferred hemline for a number of years and it's nice that the length is so popular now because it was impossible to find when it wasn't. I managed to take advantage of some great sales and made the most of gift cards and coupons. I spent less than $30 on five of the pieces and two were just over $40. The only item that topped the $100 mark are the sneakers and they're 40% off. I think I'm set for awhile. My husband's wardrobe has also gotten an upgrade at the same time since I also do his clothes shopping.

1. Who What Wear Bardot Midi Dress
I went to Target to buy some bread and ended up with this chic polka dot dress. It's so flattering and comfortable. Also slightly longer than shown on the model.
Fits TTS / Purchased size S

2. Gap Embroidered Denim Tank
This tank has such lovely details and looks so much more expensive than it was.
Fits slightly large / Purchased size XS

3. Who What Wear Colorblocked Pleated Midi Skirt
A high end look at a bargain price. I've worn this skirt a few times and always get compliments on it.
Fits slightly large / Purchased size XS

4. COS A-Line Wool Skirt
This classically styled tailored skirt is a wardrobe staple that I can see myself wearing for many years to come.
Fits TTS / Purchased size 6

5. J. Crew Clip Dot Tiered Skirt
The swingy tiered silhouette is feminine and versatile and I love the pockets. Looks great paired with the Gap embroidered tank.
Fits slightly large / Purchased size 4

6. H&M Culottes with Ruffles
The ruffles are a really nice detail and my husband says these culottes make my legs look super long which is always a plus.
Fits TTS / Purchased size 6

7. Nike Air Max Thea Ultra Leather-Trimmed Flyknit Sneakers
I was coveting a pair of Nike Air Thea's as well as a pair of Nike Flyknit's so this pair gets me both. They're incredibly lightweight and the gold adds a touch of luxe.
Fits TTS / Purchased size 8

8. Victoria Beckham for Target Asymmetric Scallop Trim Top
This was the one piece I wanted from this collab and it does not disappoint. The scallops are so cute and it's really well made.
Fits TTS / Purchased size S

Have you purchased any new clothing lately?

Recent Loves

May 31, 2017

This is where I talk about some of the beauty products I've been loving lately...  it's mostly masks this month. I really like my masks and probably own more facial treatments than eyeshadow LOL

Through My Lens : Recently On Instagram

May 29, 2017

A few highlights of the past month as seen on Instagram which serves as my unofficial food diary and love letter to NYC. I also post quick reviews here and there and try to keep my content unique so it's not a bunch of photos from here. You can see more on Instagram and do follow if you like what you see...

  • Came upon this lovely public art installation at Rockefeller Center when I was up in the area for an event. And it raises awareness for a terrific cause as well. 
  • Arcade Bakery makes some of the best pizza downtown and their special mushroom, ricotta and asparagus pizza is so good!
  • Shorty Tang Noodles offers up a taste of Taiwan in Chelsea. We need to try their famous cold sesame noodles next time we visit. I'm curious to see how they compare to mine
  • Picked up some terrific tips from the pros at Thumbtack's fun Summer Soirée!
  • I couldn't pass up a view of the magnificent nine-story Victorian atrium and skylight at The Beekman when I attended the launch of the Beekman Art Collection. It's so impressive in person!
  • I'm already big fan of Pressed Juicery so of course I had to check out their collabs with Vogue and Sugarfina. Yes those are green juice gummy bears!
  • There is new poke place opening every week in NYC but Chikarashi is still a favorite and I'm always up for trying what's new on their ever evolving seasonal menu.
  • Sushi of Gari takeout style! Their sushi is $$$ in more ways than one.
  • What I'm wearing lately... midi dresses/skirts and ankle boots

Hope everyone in the US is having a good long weekend. For most people, Memorial Day marks the unofficial start of summer but let's not forget it's greater meaning and be thankful as we honor and remember those who bravely made the ultimate sacrifice for our country as well as for those who still continue to serve. And can we stop saying Happy Memorial Day because the loss of those who protect our freedom is really nothing to be happy about.

Don't miss out my latest giveaways! Win a Fresh Sugar Lip Set and/or a $100 gift card towards the JORD watch of your choice. Enter here and here!

Eye Candy : Editorial Roundup

May 25, 2017
Lee El , Lee El Lancome, Lee El 2017

So these are some of the recent editorial selections that have caught my eye. Lots of pretty here... Starting off with this gorgeous image of Lee El modeling for Lancome in Allets. The styling as well as her hair and makeup are so on point and that is how you rock a red lip.

Daniel Henney looks dapper as always in Arena Hommes Plus. He had been a regular cast member of Criminal Minds: Beyond Borders which was just cancelled. I watched an episode of this show recently and I could see why. There are just too many procedural crime dramas on TV and they all seem to come across as so soulless. Daniel's never been the best actor but he is damn fine!

Daneil Henney, Daneil Henney Arena Homme+, Daneil Henney 2017

Fresh Sugar Lip Set Giveaway

May 22, 2017
Fresh Sugar Lip Spree, Fresh Sugar Lip Treatment, Fresh Sugar, Fresh Sugar Giveaway

To celebrate Spring and just because I think my readers are awesome, I'm hosting a new giveaway. fresh Sugar Lip Treatments are a personal favorite of mine and the prize is a fresh Sugar Lip Spree Kit. This limited edition set ($37 retail / $55 value) includes five popular travel size fresh Sugar Lip treatments housed in a keepsake tin. The array of tints range from neutral to bold and a nourishing lip balm is also included for everything you need to hydrate and protect your lips.

Fresh Sugar Lip Set, Fresh Sugar Lip Treatment, Fresh Sugar, Fresh Sugar Giveaway

JORD Wood Watch Review & Giveaway

May 17, 2017
Wooden Wrist Watch
JORD Frankie 35 Watch, JORD Wood Watch Giveaway, JORD Wood Watch Review, JORD Frankie 35, JORD Frankie, Unique Watch

We're living in an age where we rely on our phones for practically everything. And I do use my phone for a number of things but not for the time because I still prefer to wear a watch. I actually feel like something's missing whenever I leave the house without one. Honestly it's just easier to look at my wrist for the time than to take out my phone. And I don't want to be one of those people who is constantly looking at their phone.

JORD Wood Watch Giveaway, JORD Wood Watch Review, JORD Frankie 35, JORD Frankie, Unique Watch

I consider watches to be fashion accessories. My Cartier Roadster is my absolute favorite but I have a rotation going so they all get some regular wear. JORD recently sent me this Frankie 35 watch. The minimal meets classic styling immediately caught my eye. Crafted of natural dark sandalwood with a slate colored face, rose gold dial and bezel, the Frankie 35 speaks to modern design meets practical function and sustainability.

JORD Frankie 35 Watch, JORD Wood Watch Giveaway, JORD Wood Watch Review, JORD Frankie 35, JORD Frankie, Unique Watch

The streamlined look of this watch is in line with my aesthetic and I like how it works well with my wardrobe whether dressed up or down. Aside from the unique look, this watch is cool because of how it feels substantial and lightweight at the same time. Light enough that I don't even feel like I have it on sometimes. It also looks and well made. This model features a sapphire crystal glass case, Swiss Ronda Normtech Caliber 763 movement and a deployment buckle with a push button mechanism for a secure fit. All JORD watches are also designed to be splash and scratch-proof. The watch can be easily maintained and cleaned with a a natural oil as needed. The brand sent along their JORD Preserve pen with a custom-formulated cleaning oil created specifically for the care of wood watches along with a cloth.

JORD Wood Watch, JORD Wood Watch Giveaway, JORD Wood Watch Review, JORD Frankie 35, JORD Frankie, Unique Watch

JORD (pronounced "yod") is a Swedish word meaning “earth, soil, or land”.  The company was founded in 2013 by two brothers in St. Louis, Missouri with a mission to bring the highest quality wood timepieces to the world. They offer a range of fashionable and unique watch styles in a variety of all natural and sustainable woods for men and women. All of their environmentally conscious products are handcrafted in the USA and backed with a one year warranty. Prices start at $139 and go up to $395 and the company ships worldwide. They will size your watch to your specifications so that it's ready to wear as soon as you receive it. I have to get all my link style watches resized because my wrists are small so it's a real timesaver when it's pre-done. And JORD also offers custom engraving for their watches as well as the box that they come in which adds a lovely personalized touch whether you're buying a watch for yourself or as a gift.

JORD Wood Watch, JORD Wood Watch Giveaway, JORD Wood Watch Review, JORD Frankie 35, JORD Frankie, Unique Watch

The JORD Frankie 35 retails for $179. There is also a larger unisex version of this style called the Frankie. Visit JORD's website to see their entire line of men's watches and women's watches.

JORD wants to give one lucky reader $100 off the watch of their choice. Even if you're not the lucky winner, you still get a $25 code just for entering. Anyone can enter the giveaway through this link! Contest ends June 4, 2017.

Would you wear a wood watch? Which JORD style would you choose?

Disclosure: This post is sponsored by JORD and I was gifted a complimentary watch. No other compensation was provided and all words and opinions expressed are my own.  For more details about my product review policy, copyright, and information about affiliate links, please refer to the Policies page of this blog. 

Dine Out : Kelley & Ping

May 15, 2017
Kelley & Ping Review, Kelley & Ping New York, Kelley & Ping Soho

Kelley & Ping which led the way in Pan Asian cuisine in the early 90's has been a Lower Manhattan mainstay for 23 years with a menu inspired by the market stalls of Asia. The restaurant is located within a a historic cast iron building in the heart of Soho on Greene Street. The cavernous space features lofty ceilings and wood details throughout. The eatery which also operates as a grocery and tea shop features decor that is fun and a touch kitschy with Chinese New Year masks, bagua mirrors and fans lining one side wall and replica statues of the Forbidden City terra cotta warriors watching over the space from the back windows.  The vibe during lunch service is definitely casual in a manner similar to Asian hawker centers where you order and pay at the counter, find a table as your food is prepared in the open kitchen and then go pick it up when they call your name. At dinner, the space is transformed into a full service dining room with a more intimate atmosphere as the lights are dimmed and the candles come out. The menu is more advanced and there is a full bar serving specialty cocktails, Asian beers and premium sakes.

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