Thursday, March 3, 2011

March, for girls

Something about the onset of spring makes my girliness come out. I know, I know, we're hardly in the full swing of spring yet (like that catchiness?), but the warm-ish afternoons scattered here and there, the occasional foray outside without wool trappings, the more frequent need for sunglasses... these things all have me buying extra flowers, spraying extra perfume, and putting away my boots. So since it's March, and since I don't indulge my girly side on this blog as often as I could, let's go for it. (Please imagine Anne Hathaway-style "woo hoo"-ing after every segment.)

Spring to me is all about fresh, clean skin. I've long been an advocate for paying up for skincare now (products + treatments) in order to reap huge benefits down the road. My skin runs dry and sensitive, and while I don't have to worry about breakouts, I do worry about aging (I'm picturing my dad shaking his head right now, remembering the hundreds of times he got annoyed at me for getting sunburned over the years). I use as many products with built-in sunscreen as I can, and I moisturize, moisturize, moisturize. Because I'm so sensitive, I gave up finding a cleanser that worked as well for me as Cetaphil, hitting that sweet spot of cleaning out pores without stripping or irritating my skin. Also, true story: the first time I showered at T's apartment way back when in Albuquerque, I actually said out loud: "Awwww, we use the same cleanser!" So I felt married to Cetaphil, as it were, until two Triple Oxygen Facials ago at Bliss (these facials? my biggest indulgence, alongside Le Creuset and All Clad. Some girls have thousand-dollar handbags; I have good skincare and a well-stocked kitchen.). My esthetician used their Clog-Dissolving Cleansing Milk on me (I add a hyphen because I am a hyphen-Nazi like that, what?), and I loved it. Loved it. I'm finishing my first complete bottle now, and I'm happy to report that not only does this stuff clean like no one's business, it doesn't irritate my skin or dry it out. First thing my esthetician said at my last facial? "What have you been doing differently? Your skin looks so clean and so good!" I've also been urging T to make the switch. After all, the couple that cleanses together, stays together...

I don't really want to count my lip balm and lip gloss collection; it's a little bit of a freakshow. Nars glosses are my favorite (supplemented by Kiehl's), and I can almost always justify a new shade. I've settled (for now) on my fave tinted lip balm, and my pocket almost always has a Laura Mercier Berry inside. Lipsticks, though, haven't been my thing for a while. Until one night last fall when I ended up poking around a Chanel counter and began a red-hot affair with a tube of their Aqualumiere Lipstick in Porto Rotondo. This product is a torrid collision between my burning passion, lip gloss, and my steady companion, sunscreen, spanked into shape by lipstick. The color looks garish in the tube - a bad '80s sparkle red-fuschia - but on the lips it's beyond lovely, the perfect red-pink with the soft shimmer of a gloss. I  wear it almost every day. You know, while pretending I'm on a spring getaway in Southern France, wearing a blue and white-striped boatneck tee, ballet flats, and tiny yellow shorts that magically look wonderful on me, and carrying a large straw bag filled with fresh produce and the ubiquitous baguette. (Or something like that.)

Springtime also makes me want to buy a closet full of new clothes oh so badly. That sort of thing is not in the cards this season budget-wise (helloooo, house hunt!), but please let me fantasize about the following:

 1. Figure-flattering perfection for me (neckline: see my wedding dress, bodice and skirt placement: see my rehearsal dinner dress), and when belted and cardi-d/jacketed, great for work meetings, too.

2. Are we sure I didn't design this? I might as well have, and would wear it endlessly, like all the other jersey-knit Anthro dresses in my closet that are not in this perfect bright blue.

3. Shirts can be tough. Ladies with a lot going on up top, can you give me an amen? Every year I dream of wispy button-downs as light as a breeze that fit wonderfully, and every year I am reminded that by the time I layer a camisole underneath there is nothing "wispy" about my look at all. (Maybe one day I'll try having a custom shirt made to eliminate my dressing room frustration - until then, camisoles or 2-4 safety pins hidden in the lining it is!) That said, I still plan on trying on this lineup of perfect button-downs at J. Crew. A girl can dream, right? Also loving: the shape of flowy floral tops that are everywhere this year, provided I can find one with enough shape to avoid the dreaded ski slope look that can come from bulky tops, or find one that looks great belted. (My C+ ladies, can we also give an amen to defined waists?)

4. Pretty sure I'm going to need these. I adore Fryes, and these would be so fondly-remembering-grad-school-while-celebrating-the-present of me. Only problem is, deciding between slate or yellow?

5. Have I mentioned that my left shoulder and neck are breaking? No? I'm under strict husband-orders to quit carrying a heavy purse or go through the shoulder surgery he had before we met. This has worked fairly well in the winter because I can use my coat pockets, but come spring I'll be once again itching to carry a wonderbag full of everything I might ever need. As a result, I'm looking at cross-body bags, and would love recommendations if you see any great ones. For the sake of my broken-down shoulder, help!

Whew! That's a lot of spring fever. What is your girly side enjoying or coveting this spring?


  1. I used to use Cetaphil as well. I loved Cetaphil. But it started to let me down just as it did to you. I've being trying some different cleansers so I'll check out this Bliss one.
    Skirts are always my spring favorite. I have a ton and I always want more.

  2. ooh i may have to try this cleanser- winter has been absolute hell on my skin. which isn't that great on its best day. (oh and my husband? washes his face with a bar of soap. !!!)

    i can't wait to wear skirts and dresses without tights and boots! which reminds me, i better start slathering on the self tanner.

    oh! and i've been trying to carry my purse in the crook of my arm or in my hand- i've heard that's easier on your body. as is not carrying around a crapload of stuff but... one thing at a time.

  3. Amen with the shirts!
    Great post.

  4. - When I first glanced at your title, I thought it read 'March for Girls.' I spent a solid 30 seconds thinking about what a march for girls would look like and now I think there should totally be one.

    - Aqualumiere! That is all.

  5. I used to use Cetaphil, but I don't really like its smell, and it does have one. Now I use Burt's Bees Marshmallow cleanser, which doesn't dry out my skin and smells delicious. I'd love these summer shoes-- Nude peep toe Hasbeens. To pricey for me right now, but I'm watching them.

  6. I know this is really over the top, but I wore little half strip fake lashes out one night and now I'm completely addicted. It's sad.

  7. love love love the halter top dress!


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