Friday, April 22, 2016

HAMMS Event 2016

The HAMMS Event 2016
I'll see you here, with a bunch of other kick-ass makers on June 4th at Lake Monster Brewing.

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Saint Paul Magazine

Lowertown Pop featured in Saint Paul Magazine
Thanks to Saint Paul Magazine for featuring Lowertown Pop and our Stormsister - Lips Accessorized collection, as well as our shampoo | shower | shave bars and Wicked massage candles, in their April issue.

We truly appreciate everyone who came out to Lowertown Pop for our inaugural event, and to those who made donations to our crowdfunding project. We were thrilled to give $4100 to Marvelous Melissa and $4100 to Face to Face.

We'll have more info about Lowertown Pop popping up at the Union Depot Holiday Bake Sale this December, as well as the 2017 Lowertown Pop next April. More info to come!

Monday, April 18, 2016

Spring Skincare

spring skincare
As you can see, posts have been very irregular here for a while. My bad.
In my defense, as you may know, I've been busy producing a MN maker market for Union Depot - Lowertown Pop.

Lowertown Pop popped up April 9th and the Mytalk 107.1 Shop Girls were also on hand and kind enough to give me a few minutes on their show. (April 9th - Hour 1 - starting just after the 15 min mark).

I know at one point, Allison wanted to discuss spring makeup shades but I really wanted to discuss the importance of skincare during this change in the seasons, (sorry Allison!) and mention that it's time to switch up our skincare and get a facial to start our spring routine off fresh.

Winter is time for heavier moisturizers, and creams - Spring is time for lightening things up a bit.

Having spent over 25 years in the spa and salon, I know the importance of regular facials. At least at the change of the seasons - spring, summer, winter, fall. If your pocket book allows it, have them more often.

Facials deep clean and moisturize our skin and prepare it to maximize the potential of your skincare products.
A reputable esthetician will recommend the best skincare for your skin, so please invest in it. Remember, do it now vs. later. At some point you're going to spend money on your skin, in some fashion, if you want to keep it young looking - invest now. Trust me.

I turn the big 5-0 this year and have been adjusting my skincare according to my age and weather for many years.
It's now SPRING so I put away the heavy cleansing cream (I live in MN and winter is wicked!) and bring out the cleansing milk - using that morning and evening to cleanse my skin.
After cleansing I spray a toner onto my face (many don't come in spray form, so I use an atomizer to spray mine on. (I find it wasteful to use a cotton pad to apply toner as skin should be damp to receive serum and moisturizer).
While my skin is damp (not dripping) from my toner, I apply a serum and then immediately follow with a lighter moisturizer than I have used in the winter months).

Exfoliating and masking are also must-do's for optimum skin health. I recommend 2x a week. I do my masking and exfoliating on the same day. Then follow up with my toner, serum and moisturizer.

For men who shave or women that are doing at-home "blading", minimize irritation by keeping blades fresh - since we have all become fans of the "subscription box" phenomenon, I love that new razors arrive from Dollar Shave Club on a schedule that you determine. (I fell in love with their brand several years ago when I saw their videos/commercials.)

As summer approaches and humidity increases it's time to change it up again after another facial. I will often opt for only the serum after the toner or only the moisturizer in the hot, humid MN summers.

Though I know it is recommended to wear sunscreen at all times, I'm not a fan of this philosophy. If you live in a constantly sunny climate or spend prolonged periods of time outside, yes, some form of sunscreen should be applied. But here in MN, many folks suffer from vitamin D deficiency, from our long darker winters, so sunscreen all the time is contributing to this problem.
Please do your research and consult your doctor or dermatologist on this matter.

Thursday, March 31, 2016

Enter to Win!

Win a pair of Lowertown Pop tickets, as well as one of 14 great MN Maker gifts!

Enter here.

Offer expires April 4th.

Get all the details on Lowertown Pop here.
I'll have StormSister Spatique and 3waybeauty goods in tow.

See ya there!

Sunday, March 13, 2016

Roses are red...

An enduring symbol of love and luxury, ancient rose finds new life in modern-day skincare.

From rose-scented treatment rooms to baths infused with the precious petals, rose has long been a popular ingredient in spas. As the world’s oldest cultivated decorative plant, it is primarily native to the Northern Hemisphere but likely originated in Persia, according to The Magical and Ritual Use of Perfumes (Destiny Books, 1990) by Richard Alan Miller and Iona Miller. The flowers quickly spread, popping up symbolically in Greek and Indian mythologies and in physical form throughout Europe and the Middle East. Over the years, women as disparate as Joan of Arc and Cleopatra have been linked with this token of love, and if they’re good enough for a hallucinating martyr and a cunningly beautiful queen, they’re certainly suitable for we spa-going mortals.

As befitting a plant of such stature, “Rosa damascena is one of the most precious and expensive oils currently on the market,” says Amy Galper, founder and executive director of the New York Institute of Aromatherapy. “The petals don’t yield much essential oil, so it takes a huge amount of plant material to distill a few milliliters, approximately 10,000 roses for just five milliliters, but just a tiny bit has a profound effect in skincare.” Donna Cristino, founder of the beauty brand Jing Ai, calls rose oil “a hidden little gem” and promises that we’ll be seeing a lot more of it in the future.

While rose is often noted for its scent, the velvety flower has hidden depths. “Rose essential oil is an excellent emollient; it also offers antiseptic and astringent properties to treat acneic skin and properties that help treat redness and inflammation,” says Jaklin Idris, director of education for Decléor Paris. “Rose oil can help refine skin texture, controlling skin diseases such as atopic dermatitis.” And, according to Galper, it has no known adverse effects. “Rose can be a great addition to skincare formulas, especially for evening out stressed skin and nurturing clients’ confidence,” she says. “It also has great therapeutic characteristics, balancing and soothing tired, dull, and aging skin.”

Rose’s high concentrations of vitamins A, C, and E encourage healthy skin rejuvenation and protect from free-radical damage, says Tiffany McLauchlin, director of education for Lira Clinical. The flower also contains fatty acids like linolenic acid, which hydrates and suppresses tyrosinase activity for healthier, brighter skin.

Precious Petals

Rose appears in skincare products in multiple forms, from standard extracts and essential oils to cutting-edge stem cells, and each offers its own benefits. Rose extract and essential oil are often valued for their aromas, says Nicci Anstey, global sales development manager for Elemis, but the extract is reputed to have soothing and refreshing benefits, while the essential oil has hydrating properties. There’s also rosehip oil, which “contains a high content of unsaturated essential fatty acids, antioxidants, and vitamins A, C, and E,” says Anstey. “It’s highly moisturizing and replenishes dry, stressed skin, helping it to feel more elastic, firm, and hydrated.”

A Rose by Any Other Name

There are more than 100 species of rose, and companies are combining different rose stem-cell extracts for maximum benefits. “White rose supports natural cell regeneration and the skin barrier while restoring suppleness; damask rose helps to tighten pores and purify and smooth the skin; rosa canina (rosehips) calms and brightens skin and helps prevent transepidermal water loss; and pale rose helps to rebuild the moisture barrier and provide suppleness for the appearance of newer, softer skin,” says director of education Tricia Campbell.

Celebrated as the queen of essential oils, steam-distilled Bulgarian rose oil (known as rosa damascena or rose otto) is considered to be some of the best in the world. “Soothing, cleansing, and an anti-inflammatory, it is ideal for sensitive skin, rosacea, and broken capillaries, and it has a sweet floral scent that is uplifting, romantic, and calming,” says Agnes Ding, public relations and marketing manager at Anantara Spa at The Puli Hotel and Spa (Shanghai). “Traditional Chinese medicine uses the petals to nourish skin, and in Ayurvedic medicine, rose is used to balance emotions and tone and cool the skin.”

At Anantara Spa, rose is only combined with massage oil for special packages or treatments, but when it’s used, Bulgarian rose oil is preferred. “Extracted from the petals of the pink rose plant rosa damascena from Europe and the Middle East, rose absolute is brimming with antioxidants that help combat signs of aging and cellular damage,” Ding says.

Picking Up the Scent

Skincare benefits are all well and good, but the coveted flower also boasts an appealing scent with therapeutic advantages. “For many people, rose evokes a scent memory that makes it not only a fabulous treatment for the skin but also an experience for the spirit,” says Cindi Moreno, former director of spa and wellness at the Waldorf Astoria Spa at the Boca Raton Resort & Club (FL). Rose oil can also be used to subtly perfume a treatment room or a welcome area. ”The aroma has tremendous calming and nurturing properties,” says Galper. “It’s quite transporting and helps us make deeper connections to our spiritual sides.” It’s important to keep in mind, however, that because it’s so expensive, diffusing it isn’t the best idea. “An authentic oil is so potent that one drop in a half-ounce of facial serum is enough,” says Galper.

excerpt via American Spa Magazine - Maya Stanton

Monday, February 29, 2016


Stormsisters Lips Accessorized - Helen
My grandmother Helen, was a leap baby - born February 29th. I remember having fun with her on her leap birthday, trying to figure out how old she would be if she only celebrated her birthday every four years.

Grandma was also the main reason I love lipstick so much, and when I was developing Stormsisters - Lips Accessorized, there was no question I would name a shade after her.

When I was a little girl, beginning at the age of 4 or so, and we would go over to visit my grandparents, I would give all of my kisses and hugs upon arrival and immediately run to the bathroom and lock the door. Same ritual. Visit after visit, for years.

My grandmother kept her Estee Lauder lipsticks in a covered, round, wooden bowl on the bathroom counter. I used to hop up on the toilet and climb onto the counter facing the mirror. I would then open one of her pink lipsticks and apply, admire for a minute or so and then wipe off. Of course I was too young to be wearing lipstick so this tradition kept up for many years in her locked bathroom. Hugs and kisses, lipstick application.
In fact, even when I became a grown woman and could wear lipstick without hiding it, I would open her tubes of lipstick whenever I went into the bathroom, simply to inhale that familiar lipstick aroma. I remember being disappointed when Estee Lauder changed the formulation and their lipsticks smelled completely new and unfamiliar.

I'll never forget the smell of those lipsticks. Truth be told, I found an old Estee Lauder lipstick at an estate sale once and I had to open it and see if it still smelled like how I remembered. It did. That lipstick came home with me and I still will open it periodically and take in a deep breath of it.

Simple pleasures.

Happy Birthday, Grandma.

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Face, Hands and Bod

New Vie Collection, Fleur's, Phytomer and Phytoceane skincare.
New products for hands, decollete, face and body!

Vie Collection MÉSOPEPTIDE DÉCOLLETÉ REPLENISHING CREAM combines the comfort of a cream with the tensing power of a gel. It melts into the skin, leaving an ultra-soft finish and is enriched with light reflecting pearlescent agents for an immediate enhancing effect.

- Evens
- Smoothes
- Densifies
- Moisturizes

Phytomer Body Blur Shaka Shaka - just the name cracks me up! (Leave it to the French.) - Taking preorders now for a March 1st launch!

PHYTOMER has created the 1st Shaka Shaka contouring product: A three-phase water-oil-powder lotion you shake before applying to instantly smooth cellulite and tackle visible fat. Like magic, BODY BLUR evens out the appearance of orange peel skin upon application. Day after day, it corrects visible cellulite and refines the waist and thighs.

Not for use by pregnant or breastfeeding women. Not suitable for people sensitive to iodine.

Phytoceane Moisturizing Fusion Cream a real moisturizing shock with a “cream-in-water” texture and refreshing scent. Formulated with RubiMarin, an ultra-moisturizing vegetal coral cultivated in the Phytoceane laboratories, this cream fills the epidermis with moisture and freshness.

Your face is re-energized, more supple and extremely hydrated.

Phytomer OLÉOCRÈME Ultra-Nourishing Hand Cream - Comforting SOS hand care.
This rich, silky cream with a fresh, citrus scent protects, soothes and softens dry and damaged hands. Integrating a hydrating duo of marine oils, it reveals perfect hands: skin is intensely nourished, moisturized, comforted and better protected from external stress.

Fleur's is going through a huge repackaging and rebranding. This is the first brand new cream with the new packaging (we will switch over to new packaging as products become available):

Fleur's Floraskin Youth Plumping Cream - Nutri-fusional texture.
A soft facial cream with a velvety feel that deposits a veil of softness on the skin.
Enriched with jojoba oil and shea butter, it gently nourishes the skin to bring it comfort and suppleness.
A delicious enveloping floral trail that reveals all the delicacy of Hibiscus in its heart.