Monthly Archives: March 2011

Beauty - "The Lovely" - Breakfast/Brunch - FOOD - "The Delicious" - Makeup Tools

A Green Table Brunch with EcoTools

March 31, 2011

By Nicci Jordan Hubert

EcoTools Eye Makeover On-the-Go set and Alicia Silverstone for EcoTools Train Case.

Makeup applicators can be a tricky business — not all are not created equal. When they’re too cheaply made, they shed and splotch. When they’re too expensive, well, they’re somehow heavier…as if just shelling out all that moola suddenly prohibits the enjoyment of their use (especially if the expensive brushes turn out to be cheaply made arghhh). So last week, when I had the pleasure of attending EcoTools’ launch their new spring lineup for BATF, I was stoked. I’ve long been a fan of EcoTools brushes because I found them like Goldilocks found her porridge — after testing many a brush, I found EcoTools’ weren’t too expensive, they weren’t too cheap… they were just right.

Spring flowers and mimosas at The Green Table in Chelsea Market

Luckily, the breakfast not only featured a gift bag (perks of the job…) but it was also hosted by The Green Table in Chelsea Market, a lovely nook well-renowned for its sustainable, delicious food. The space was bright and beautiful— just look at those flowers!!—and the ever-flowing glasses of Mimosas on a Thursday morning weren’t too shabby either. Who was I to turn them down?

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Bakery - Dessert - FOOD - "The Delicious"

Camera Cake from DeLush.Bakery in Chicago

March 30, 2011

DeLush Bakery camera cake

My brother and sis-in-law went to a birthday party this past weekend, and I could not stop gawking at the pictures they brought back of this camera cake made by Saba Khan of DeLush.Bakery. Sheer creativity.


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Beauty - "The Lovely"

Talking Best of Beauty with Allure’s Amy Keller Laird

March 29, 2011

Allure's deputy/beauty director, Amy Keller Laird

Allure, the beauty authority magazine, recently unveiled their Best of Beauty winners, featuring top products from every category — hair, skin, makeup, you name it. I got a chance to talk with Deputy/Beauty Director, Amy Keller Laird this morning about some of her favorites from the list! Interesting side note: I used to work with Amy years ago at Shop Etc. magazine (RIP), and she always had an open door policy when it came to my beauty questions — one of the coolest gals in the industry by far! Read on as she dishes on some of her favorites and even some never-to-be-forgotten beauty secrets from Jennifer Aniston’s stylist and Beyoncé ‘s makeup artist!:

What’s the behind-the-scenes “Best of Beauty” process like?

Amy Keller Laird:
The whole process takes about half a year. We send out a very detailed form to all the companies, asking them to submit what they consider to be the best of the best. We also ask for specific products to test from what they’ve sent us that we also consider to be the best. Then we have a team of interns who basically log in everything for every single category separately. Since we had about 190 products last year, we need everything to be organized. The beauty department definitely tests every category that pertains to them and then the regular staff fill in the holes. After about six months, everyone gets a tally sheet of all the products they tested (they can also write in their favorites if it wasn’t on the list). We tally them up and those are the winners. Of course, there is back and forth discussion depending on the category — things like fragrance always elicit passionate discussion because it’s a very personal thing, so we try to find something that appeals to everybody.

You’re constantly testing so many products, how do you decipher which one really works the best for you?

AKL: Part of it is after you’ve been doing it for so long and you try something and you immediately have that delight and that sense of Oh My God, this is different — you love the smell, you love the way it looks and how it works. There’s that immediate gratification payoff and you just keep returning to it. It’s one of those things, like this curl cream I found from Shu Uemura, their Cotton Uzu for defining my waves. After discovering it, I just never want to try the new products for when they come in, but you know, I have to, it’s part of my job. But that’s kind of when you know that product is a winner — when you don’t even want to try anything else.

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Beauty - "The Lovely" - Beauty on the Streets - Dessert

Beauty on the Streets: Nadia Hubbi of Sweet Pillar & Co.

Nadia Hubbi of Sweet Pillar & Co.

Name: Nadia Hubbi

Age: 28

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BATF Giveaways - Beauty - "The Lovely" - Hair - Hair Tools

Giveaway! Clipless and Flat Iron Gift set from HerStyler

March 28, 2011

We’ve officially made it to the 1K mark on our Facebook fan page! To celebrate, I’m giving away a colorful gift set, courtesy of ONE BATF reader will enjoy a colorful HerStyler gift set that includes a 1.5″ ceramic straightener, one mini straightener, and a grande baby clipless curler (25″ base and 18″ end) valued at $425.

GIVEAWAY: HerStyler gift set

Entering is easy as always — do one of the following to enter, or ALL to increase your odds of winning:
(1) Leave a comment on this post about why you should win :)

(2) Tweet “Win a HerStyler clipless and flat iron gift set worth over $400 by retweeting this link @BeautyNDFeast”
(3) “Like” BATF’s Facebook page and leave a comment on the post mentioning this giveaway

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Beauty - "The Lovely" - FOOD - "The Delicious"

3 ways to get a jump start to summer

March 27, 2011

By Nicci Jordan Hubert

So ready to frolick on the beach

Back in February, Royal Caribbean aired one of the best commercials I’d seen in ages. It plays a song about embracing the chill of winter by snuggling up by the fire–“it’s winter again,” the crooner sings–yet images float of people snorkeling in a beautiful ocean, drinking ice-cold margaritas, and standing beside an open window with lightly flowing curtains. The commercial ends with a woman’s voice, “Don’t you just love February?”

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