I love this handmade bandana top that comes in a range of colors and sizes (XS to XL). You can tie it tightly in the back for support. The satin or silk look is fashionable today but this top is also is a classic piece that can be layered or accessorized to stand the test of time.
I’m pictured in both looks wearing Zuni earrings from Pueblo Stone and a Navajo necklace. I highly recommend this shop on Etsy to purchase authentic Native American (mostly Zuni) art and jewelry with all proceeds going directly to Native Americans. I love wearing such a vibrant piece that is representative of a rich true American history. As a history buff its cool to read text from Spanish colonizers describing the Zuni tribe use of turquoise and to actually wear it today. ❤
I love that this body suit is made of stretchy fabric. There are clasps at the bottom of the body suit that makes it more convenient to wear. The puffed sleeves add a little flare to the simple look. I love the quality of the fabric and that its the perfect shade of black. It can be dressed up or down. It was easy to steam before wearing it because the fabric barely wrinkles.
These jeans are described as comfortable and stretchy and they are just that. I love that I feel so free to move in them. I think the high waisted feature adds a retro touch. They feel super soft on and just like the body suit they’re easy to dress up or down. ❤
Youth to the People Dream Eye Cream – This is a night eye cream that purposely swells / firms up the skin under the eyes to prevent the look of eye sagging and crows feet. I love that this product feels like an eye “reset” and my eyes bounce back to a more refreshed look by the time I wake up in the morning. If you only try one product from this list look into this one.
Dior Capture Totale Eye Cream – This eye cream is ultra hydrating and great to use morning and night. The package does not have that much product but it does last some time because a little goes a long way. I enjoy using it all over my forehead.
Peter Thomas Roth Cucumber Eye Patches – These eye patches don’t slide down my face after application and they are easy to apply. I wish the eye serum was more evenly applied because some eye patches are a bit dried out while others are drenched with serum. I love to use these while working at my laptop with my glasses on over the top or at night more comfortably.
All in all, none of these eye care products act as a one-stop-shop purchase meaning they all help with one or two eye problems but they aren’t all-in-one miracle products when they stand alone. I’d say the Youth to the People eye cream has the most impactful difference on my eyes when used at night when enough product is used. Substantial eye care is so important with extended screen time so I’m open to learning about new products and tips. ❤
Hands down I already know when I make my final best food Bay Area Eats round up this year this food truck will get featured. Mexi-tamalli is run by two women and they create tasty, creative, thoughtful, and ambitious tamales at affordable prices. I ordered three and the price came up to $15.50 and rounded up to $16.90 with tax. The chocolate mole tamale was perfectly seasoned and the chocolate-chili aroma delighted the senses as an ideal pre-Valentines treat. The pork tamale tasted crispy and non-oily and the chicken tamale tasted lightly sweetened by the sweet corn. I ordered my tamales already prepared with sauces. I recommend enjoying the dish with the traditional sauces. I highly recommend checking them out. They often park on Saturdays at the Santa Clara Town Center. ❤
See you in the next installment, let me know your South Bay food recommendations ~
Perfume Apothecary Wild Rose ~ Freesia, Litchi, Wild Rose, Apricot, Lily-of-theValley, Amber, Cedar notes
This newly launched in 2020 perfume embodies the romance of a true rose with a fresh and clean scent. The longevity is not the best but it does last a good 4 hours and very faintly afterwards.
Since I’m home more often having super long longevity is less important because I can reapply as needed. What I love about this floral scent is how sophisticated it smells for the affordable price $48. Additionally, this fragrance mixes well with other scents. It smells wonderful when paired with scented body lotions.
It sincerely has the aroma of rose petals at first application with a touch of apricot. I think this perfume is the perfect late winter, early spring scent because it adds a bit of floral freshness to my day and paves the way forward to spring flowers. Also, this perfume smells similar to Chloe eau de Parfum Chloé. I could not put my finger on it before and figure out what exactly it smells so similarly to, but after looking at the Fragrantica site I finally see the connection.
This brand even has skincare products made with apothecary rose so if you’re into roses as much as I am definitely check it out. ❤
I purchased the Sugar Cookie foot scrub and vanilla lavender body cream from the FleurdeLysss Etsy shop. This shop is excellent because the quality is outstanding, ingredients natural, packaging is sensible and delivery was timely. The sugar cookie foot scrub leaves my feet extremely soft. The the whipped body cream is hydrating and scented with relaxing lavender. My super sensitive body skin did not get irritated by the products. I purchased more products from this business for family because I was so impressed by the quality for the price. The foot scrub was only $4.50 and the body cream only $5.00. I highly recommend this place for affordable winter-friendly valentines gifts to yourself, family, and loved ones! ❤
Body Product Time! I got some products from Target and Bed Bath & Beyond. Here are my dry winter skin spa shower recommendations:
Dr. Bronner’s Heal Soul Eucalyptus Soap – This soap is all-in-one in that is can be used on the face and body and in household cleaning as well. The Eucalyptus scent is invigorating and light. I’ve used the soap for my face too and it cleans my skin well but it is a tad too drying for the face. The consistency is watery and easy to lather. I love the brand’s mission to sustainability and mental health. Read Dr. Bronner’s story here – https://www.drbronner.com/about/ourselves/the-dr-bronners-story/
Tree Hut Cotton Candy Body Scrub – This is my favorite Tree Hut body scrub scent because it makes the entire bathroom smell like cotton candy. I feared the cotton candy smell would smell juvenile or chemical-like but it is perfectly balanced and more-so a sugary strawberry smell than anything else. I highly recommend giving this body scrub a try to have a little fun and enjoy a shower sweet treat while exfoliating. It makes my skin so soft that I do not even need to use a shower mitten when I use this.
Nivea Cocoa Butter Lotion – I do not see my exact bottle listed online on Target so I’m linking the other Cocoa Butter lotion from this line. I love how hydrating this lotion is it really brings dry winter skin back to life instantaneously.The scent is light and clean, and a little of the product goes a long way as well.
Dr. Teals Eucalyptus & Spearmint Body & Bath Oil – Another hydrating body product is the Dr. Teals body oil. This products also goes a long way with very little. It is affordable and under $5. The herbal scent rivals pricer products from the Bath & Body Works aromatherapy line. I like using it as a body oil at night. It also can be used in the bath. ❤
I purchased an at-home steam sauna from Wayfair. It is currently out of stock but there are similar ones on Amazon and Wayfair should restock soon. ***back in stock now
Pros: This is the best purchase I’ve made this year thus far because the fact that I can use it at home makes the process more hygienic. Additionally, having my head out of the steam area allows for more comfortable extended time in the sauna room because the cool air makes the warmth of the room more bearable. I love to add a little eucalyptus oil to the bottom mat. The arm holes in the room are convenient to reach for things like the side pocket, to hold a cellphone, or a cup of water. There is only one side pocket.
The set up was fast and easy, the only confusing part was the tubes and understanding where to put them but after seeing videos of others putting it together it became easy; just one outer tube to the steam machine and another to the small white steam pot that goes under the chair. Overall, love how effective the steam room is and how I feel afterwards like I just had a full body massage.
Cons: The water MUST be filled to the max line on the steam machine or it will not start. The machine is a little slow to start steaming up so I always use boiling water to speed up the timing. When I do fill to the max line and use boiling water it only takes about 5-7 minutes to fill the room with steam. It does take a little time to dry out the room after use like about 30 minutes. I like to use a hair dryer to dry the inside and air out the bottom mat outside on my patio. The remote control does not come with the necessary AAA batteries.
Overall, I love this machine and I cannot recommend it enough because for the price you get your money’s worth in only 2-3 uses. It is more hygienic and private as a portable room and you can set the mood however you like from the privacy of your own home. In my beauty learning journey I’ve found that steam is the key to everything from hair growth to clear skin. If you invest in one self-care item this year I recommend a full body at-home steam sauna. ❤
Ramen Hajime – 5229 Stevens Creek Blvd, Santa Clara, CA 95051
I’ve ordered from Ramen Hajime a few times and I’ve found that flavor-wise their Kiwami Tonkotsu ramen blows other pork ramen in the South Bay out of the water. It is mouthwatering perfection no exaggeration in my opinion. Perfectly balanced, rich tasting, craving satisfying egg noodle ramen. I’ve ordered the seafood ramen as well but I prefer the pork ramen because the broth remains hotter in the pork soup for a longer amount of time. Check out this spot for hot soup during the cold winter months and maybe try or share a Kiwami Tonkotsu soup as well.
Jacob’s Restaurant ~ Sonoma wine country quick bite – 1266 Broadway, Sonoma, CA 95476
We stumbled upon Jacob’s Restaurant during a Sonoma wine country trip when things were open for outdoor dining and we were impressed by the professionalism and hospitality of the waitstaff. The pizza and clam chowder soup tasted great. I highly recommend this place for some food before winery visits in the area.
MCourse Bakery – Santa Clara
Mcourse Bakery is run by twin sisters with gifts in baking. They have excellent customer service and are wiling to adapt whenever necessary. The bakery offers $8 delivery to locations close to Santa Clara. I ordered a custom birthday cake for my mom’s birthday and they modified their guava cake to fit the roses theme of her celebration. What stood out the most was the complimentary macaroon they gave with my cake order. I never tasted a better macaroon.
They make all their macaroons made-to-order because they don’t have a store. Luckily for customers the macaroons remain soft and fresh because they don’t harden from store display. I ordered the raspberry chocolate macaroons for Christmas and they threw in extra ones to sample other flavors and delivered it too me for free because I couldn’t make it down to pick it up at the scheduled time. They are superheroes in professionalism and sweets. I highly recommend ordering macaroons from this bakery. ❤
How are you all doing and feeling this holiday season? I’ve been a bit busy with my PhD and graduate studies planning however I still feel super grateful for so many things in my life.
In this part of the two part series I have two recommendations for skincare Elemis Superfood Blackcurrant exfoliator and Elemis Peptide Plumping Pillow Facial and one candle recommendation Foundry Mistletoe.
What I appreciate about the blackcurrant exfoliator is that it is gentle enough for every day use, nondrying, nonirritating because it does not leave my skin red, its vegan, and it effectively gets rid of any gunky oil or impurities on the skin with gentle circular motions. Additionally, it does not require aggressive scrubbing and it is currently on sale on the site Mankind for $28, this is the link.
Elemis Peptide Plumping Pillow Facial feels pillowy unsurprisingly. I love the subtle relaxing smell sweetened by jasmine and sweet orange for the ultimate at-night destress experience. I am a sucker for gel moisturizers because they instantly absorb into the skin rather than sit on top. This overnight face mask does not disappoint because it provides that instant hydration. A key ingredient is Peptide4, as we all know from basic biology peptide chains naturally occur in amino acids and the peptide4 ingredient derived from yeast helps add more of it to the skin to boost the overnight skin revitalization process.
My candle recommendation smells like a winter forest, the mistletoe candle from the brand Foundry. I purchased mine from Bed Bath & Beyond. I recommend this $6 candle because the throw is fantastic for the cost. The scent is christmassy, warm, and woodsy. I love the mercury glass jar it comes in and the size of the candle. It is about the size of a large navel orange. I’d make a great last minute gift for yourself or a friend.
Pawfume Blue Ribbon Premium Grooming & Finishing Spray – This dog perfume is unisex and has a fresh clean scent. It beats her previous baby powder cologne she used beforehand because this scent is less chemical smelling and it lasts longer. I also have noticed it makes her fur softer too. I purchased the cologne from Amazon and many reviews rave about this cologne for bigger dogs, messy puppies, and regular use in-between baths.
Gentle Wipes Baby Powder for Puppies – These wipes are sold at several pet shops. I love using them on her paws after walking outside. The baby powder scent is not overpowering and they effectively clean her light colored fur.
Tent Room with a lamp from Target – I’ve wanted a pet tent room for some time but I had a dilemma. I struggled to find one that was big enough to fit her crate. The dog tents that were extra large on Etsy were $250-400 on average. The pet tents sold online were either too small or too low in height for a crate or sold out. Then I thought why not use a kid’s tent instead because the width should be large enough to fit a crate and the cost was typically only $35-60. I decided to get this pink play tent from Target with a fairy lights chandelier for $45. The lamp comes with batteries. Her crate fit in perfectly and she immediately loved her new room.
Petco sweater dress with plaid skirt bottom – I find Petco clothing a bit hit or miss in sizing because my maltipoo is long but too small for size small clothing sometimes. However, the sweater dress fit her well though a little loose at the top but its a good thing because I’m sure her neck felt more comfortable with the extra space.
The Bear & the Rat Pumpkin Cinnamon Frozen Yogurt cups from Petco – My puppy LOVES these yogurt cups. They soothe her sore gums because she’s been loosing so many baby teeth these days. So far I’ve found three of her teeth on the floor. I let her eat half of the cup and then pop it back into the freezer and give her the other half another day.
Etsy Christmas dress and hand knit sweater dress pictured above – I love the craftsmanship of both dresses above. Both were delivered promptly at great prices, custom-made, and have excellent customer service.