Sunday, November 30, 2008

Hangover Cures

Thanks to the guys over at for bringing us an interactive list of favorite hangover cures. Some of our favorites are missing: Miso soup, Emergen-C and coconut water, but they have a nice list. We dare any of you to try the pickle juice cure and report back to us! Just looking at it makes us queasy.

Got any foolproof hangover cures? JSG is always on the lookout for a new one!

Saturday, November 29, 2008

By George in Austin

By GeorgeThis week, the New York Times featured By George in Austin in a piece on the struggle of independent boutiques in these budget conscious times.

Shopping -- even when it's just window shopping -- is always a highlight of our girls' trips. When we were in Austin, the legendary By George was the first store we hit. Even though we're on a tighter budget these days, the selection was so special and unique compared to what we've seen in big department stores, we bought a Rag & Bone dress. We can't wait to start wearing it to holiday parties this month. And because we bought it in Austin and haven't seen the dress in other stores, we know no one will show up in the same outfit.

The point of the Times piece is that independent stores have it tougher than department stores or chain stores, which have deeper pockets and greater leverage due to their size. The strength of the boutique store -- the good ones, that is -- is that it knows its customers better and can offer a cherry picked selection of the season's best fashions. By George not only did this, it baked them up in a pie served topped with fresh whipped cream.

So keep on shopping at By George and other boutique stores. We realize those 40 and 50 percent off sales at Saks, Neimans, Bloomies, and Macy's are hard to pass by. But buying something on sale isn't a bargain unless you really need it or love it and it fits you. And this recession isn't going to last forever. We need boutiques for their hand selected fashions, better service and unique shopping environments. Go on--just have a look.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving!

We're spending the long weekend busy with family and friends. We're so thankful to be here one year later sharing our experiences with you. Our best to everyone on this-the start of the holiday season.
Anne and Hope

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Best Body Moisturizer Ever

Typically on Thanksgiving I head south to see my mom in Alabama. As you might guess there’s no such thing as a direct flight from NYC to Mobile, so I always have to switch planes in Atlanta. The only good part about that airport is the Body Shop store in the Delta terminal. I made it my annual tradition to buy a Body Butter on my way back home. My skin is extra dry and slathering that on nightly is the only way I can make it through a winter.

Body butter

This year, I’m staying put (even cooking my first turkey. Please send good culinary thoughts my way.), so it’s a good thing I’ve discovered a moisturizer I like even better: Elemis Skin Nourishing Milk Bath. It’s meant to be used in the tub, but it doubles as an ultra-rich moisturizer. I haven’t quite figured out how one product can do both—and I have yet to try it in the bath—but as a moisturizer, it rocks. Not only does it leave my skin super soft for a full day, it soothes my itchy, cracked skin immediately.


It does have a few downsides—it smells powder-y and old lady-ish, for one; it’s a liquid, so the screw cap can prove to be messy (remember, it’s a bath milk, first and foremost) and at $66, it’s on the pricey side. That said, my 13.5 oz. bottle is sure to last me through the winter and beyond. If you’re skin is as dry as mine, it's worth it for relief.

Twilight the Movie (Makeup) Review

We saw Twilight this weekend and thought it was fun, especially since the theater was brimming with tweeners (we brought two with us) and teenagers that squealed for Edward the whole time. We can't help comparing it to Harry Potter because it's geared to the younger set, Twilight star Robert Pattinson was in the Harry Potter movies and the flick is pretty tame. For better or worse, we learned one thing about ourselves and that's that we like some raunch and gore.

If you want to sport your own Twilight look we got some scoop from the makeup artist, Jeanne Van Phue, who used MAC powders (Blot powder/pressed in Light pictured below) and shadows on both Bella and the vampires. We thought Edward's pale skin was too pasty. It looked more like Edward Scissorhands and less like marble. We think Van Phue could have used something with sheen like MAC Strobe Liquid, which would foreshadow Edward's diamonds-in-the-sun glow. We did love Bella's natural makeup, especially the MAC shadow in Wedge (a soft muted golden beige taupe) she wore in Biology class.

The fabulous Jenny at Sephora's Beauty and the Blog dished that Van Phue used Benefit lip colors on set, one for humans and one for vampires. Bella wore Benefit's Silky Finish Lipstick in Good-to-Go (a cream/plum brown) and Edward and his family wore Ms. Behavin (a cream deep dark plum purple). We'll be looking for these at Sephora since we're still wearing purples.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

A Year in High Heels Review

A friend gave us a copy of A Year in High Heels: The Girl's Guide to Everything from Jane Austen to the A-list
by Camilla Morton. Normally we prefer trashy fiction or dishy tell alls to how-to books, but this follow up to How to Walk in High Heels has an intro by the shoe guru himself, Manolo Blahnik, which was enough to convince us to give it a shot.

The rest of the book does not disappoint. We flagged 5 pages on our subway ride home the very evening we were given the book. Arranged month by month, it has such tasty morsels as quotes by the famous, such as:

"A newspaper reported that I spent $30,000 a year buying Paris clothes. I couldn't have spent that much unless I wore sable underwear." -- Jackie Kennedy Onassis

To tips on how long to cook that turkey for: we're looking at 4.5 hours for our 15 pounder; to advice on writing a sincere thank you note, the history of the sneaker, a primer on Jane Austen's library and how to shop for vintage clothes by Lulu Guinness.

It's the perfect Christmas gift for the girl who has everything. It will help her understand what makes an original Pucci so valuable and why it's of note that Maria Callas and Gianni Versace have the same birthday (December 1).

And in the spirit of A Year in High Heels, a special thanks to Erica for giving us the book that you knew we would love!

Matthew Williamson for H&M

Matthew Williamson
We skipped the H&M Commes Des Garcons collection, but come April 22, you'll find us camping outside of our local H&M. The creative director of Pucci and Sienna Miller BFF who consistently nails Boho chic, combining bright colors with dreamy prints, is designing a collection for H&M, according to WWD. These samplings from his Spring '09 show are a Jet Set Girls dream come true (courtesy of

Matthew Williamson
Matthew Williamson

How to Get a Smoky Eye

Smoky eyeWe finally did it! We learned how to create a foolproof smoky eye all on our own thanks to a lesson at the Sephora Eye Studio. Currently in the NYC's Times Square, Las Vegas's Venetian and San Francisco's Powell Street Sephora stores, the experts at the Sephora Eye studio teach you how to apply fake lashes, master color, create a cat eye or achieve the ultimate smoky eye.

Handily, the stores sell discounted kits with the key products in them so you can recreate the look at home.

Here's how to do the smoky eye, with tips from Lyn Lynch, Education Market Trainer:

1. After using a eyeshadow primer, like Urban Decay's Primer Potion (not included in kit), line upper and lower lids heavily with a black cream liner, like Stila Smudge Pot. Lyn saved us years of aggravation by teaching us that eyes don't have to look exactly the same. As Lyn says, "Eyes are not evenly shaped to start with, so don't drive yourself crazy by trying to make them symmetrical with makeup." Huh. So that was our problem all this time!

2. Top with rich bronze shadow, like Smasbhox in Rapture. Lyn used a blunt brush to apply the color from our lashes (on top of the liner), on up to our crease, but stopping short of our brow. She then took a blending brush to soften the edges. She did this in what she called a "windshield wiper" motion, gently back and forth.

3. Next, apply a Champagne shimmer shadow, like Bare Essentials Glimmer in Queen Phyllis under the brow and at the inner corner of the eyes. (JSG confession: When Lyn did this, it looked hot, when we try, we end up a shimmer-y mess. For now we're skipping this step.)

4. Top of with mascara. The Smoky Eye Kit comes with a mini Benefit Bad Gal Lash. After watching us wrestle with the giant brush, Lyn taught us to apply the mascara vertically to get it on our lashes, then turn the brush horizontally to work it through.

We've been rocking out our new look perhaps a little too much. Our SO now thinks we have a secret lover at our day job--but now that we know how to do it, the smoky eye is too sexy to leave for special occasions!

Monday, November 24, 2008

A Peek Inside Dr. Jennifer Walden's Carry On

Jennifer Walden is not only a successful NYC plastic surgeon, she's gorgeous to boot. Dr. Walden travels a lot, both for for work and for fun. We recently caught up with her after she returned from her hometown of Austin for a friend's wedding--lucky Dr. Walden, she got to stay at the Driskill. Bookmark her blog, Celebrity Plastic Surgery, where Dr. Walden gives her no holds barred takes on what work celebs have really had done from Fergie to Brad Pitt. Here's what she travels with:

I carry a large Gucci signature tote, circa 2005, similar to the one below.

My lipstick choices are:
Chanel Glossimer lip gloss in "Coral Reef" and Loreal Colour Riche lipstick in "Golden Splendor" (JSG note: We adore that Dr. Walden is a high/low girl!)

My manicures last less than a week because I scrub in so often for surgery, so I need a little extra help from CVS. I have no idea how I got through security with this in my pocketbook.
Sally Hansen Diamond Strength No Chip nail color in "Champagne Toast"
nail polish

Speaking of surgery, I have dry hands from scrubbing in and Vinotherapie by Caudalie Paris Antioxidant Hand and Nail cream is my hand cream of choice.

iPod touch 32 GB with a strangely wide variety I have been told: Willie Nelson, Yaz, Coldplay, Alison Krauss, Bruce Robison, Squeeze, Tina Turner, 50 Cent, Sugarland, George Strait, Dolly Parton, Spin Doctors, Jack Johnson, Gipsy Kings, Blues Traveler, Jerry Jeff Walker, and John Conlee to name a few.Willie Nelson

Book I am reading: Fareed Zakaria's The Post-American World:

...and some more random stuff that no plastic surgeon can do without:
a Medical Penlight
a Medpor chin implant for demonstrative purposes
2 DVDs with live surgery--Breast Augmentation by Dr Jennifer Walden, and Breast Lift with Augmentation by Dr Jennifer Walden-- for me to review in flight for an upcoming presentation at a surgery conference.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Atlantis in Dubai

Mary Kate Olsen Mischa Barton Atlantis Dubai
Sometimes when you're pinching pennies, it helps to fantasize. On that note, celebs including Charlize Theron, Denzel Washington, Mary Kate Olsen, Mischa Barton, Lily Allen and more were partying it up in Dubai at the opening of the Atlantis the Palm in Dubai (Yes, the same Atlantis that's in the Bahamas). The brand new $1.5 billion hotel opened with a show that put the opening of the Beijing Olympics to shame. (Watch it all on the Atlantis the Palm Dubai's website.) Sigh...Must be nice!

Atlantis Dubai

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Playboy Party for Movember

Playboy Party
If you ever get invited to a Playboy-sponsored party, we have one word for you: GO! Last night we went to NYC's Capitale for the Movember Gala. What is Movember, you ask? According to Movember website, it's a global charity event that invites men to grow moustaches to help raise funds and awareness for prostate cancer. The party was sponsored by Playboy, Canadian Club and Norelco razors.

We've been to many a party and have on occasion been called jaded, but this was one for the record books. It had the key element that is the success to the handful of legendary parties we've ever been to: A fun crowd! It helped that it was a costume party--everyone was dressed up as their favorite mustachioed hero, from Sherlock Holmes to 70s airline pilots to Ron Burgundy to Jim Dangle. The women went as their favorite 70s and 80s icons, think lots of Madonnas in her Boy Toy phase and aerobic instructors. (JSG heard about the party at the last minute and did not know it was a costume party.) Ghandi was the big winner of the night--he won two tickets to the Playboy Mansion--lucky dog!

Playboy Party

Just how good was the party? We went all on our lonesome because it was on our way home from dinner and planned to stay for 15 minutes. Four hours later we stumbled into a taxi!

If you do make it to a Playboy party, some advice: Start swiping your Playboy gear early. People were taking bunny shaped pillows, curtains and votives with the Playboy silhouette on them (one of these curiously landed in JSG's clutch). One of the many new friends we made last night who used to work at Playboy told us this free for all is par for the course at a Playboy party and they just turn a blind eye.

Happy Movember!

Editor's Note: Read the Washington Post's A Look That Seems to Be Growing on Us ... The Mustache is back! from November 25th, 2008.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Sexiest Man Alive 2008: Hugh Jackman

It's hard to argue with People magazine's pick of Hugh Jackman and 2008 Sexiest Man Alive. What's not to love about that chiseled chin, rugged scruff and piercing stare? We adore that Hugh has been married for 12 years and are a wee bit jealous that he wears fake tattoos, dresses up like a stockbroker and does an "80s-like hip-swiveling number" for the lucky b--ch. Guess there are more than a few benefits to being married to an actor.

Not to worry though, ladies, if for some unfathomable reason Hugh isn't your type, there are plenty of hot guys in this issue, including James Bond (aka Daniel Craig); Ed Westwick, who somehow did get infinitely sexier over the summer; and Joshua Jackson, who will always remain Pacey in our hearts. People teases us with an online slide show of the sexiest men alive.

People Sexiest man alive
We don't usually buy our magazines in print editions these days, but this issue is for sure a keeper. Aside from getting too many finger prints on our computer screen, we love that it has a special scratch and sniff section. No kidding! Find out what scent is Michael Phelp's favorite: Surprisingly, not chlorine but L’Homme YSL.

people sexiest man alive
Finally with Playgirl ceasing publication, People's Sexiest Man Alive issue is the next best thing to get your heart racing!

On Our Radar-Chelsea Hotel Atlantic City

Chelsea HotelJust because our budgets are stretched tighter than we've been known to pack out suitcases doesn't mean we're going to quit traveling all together. We've already shared our best budget tips for travel and here's one more to add: Look to a destination that's close to home. Those on the east coast should give Atlantic City a second look. JSG is -- with the holidays seconds away and airfare makes Vegas a no go. We visited Atlantic City last year and had a mixed reaction on the city. So why would we go back? To check out the recently opened Chelsea Hotel.

Situated on the boardwalk, the Chelsea Hotel in Atlantic City is a non-gaming hotel (in regular parlance that means it doesn't have a casino). Why is this a bonus in a gambling town? Because unlike Vegas, the casinos in AC draw a primarily, um, older crowd dressed in tracksuits. Not the type of people you want to be doubling down with.

The man behind the Chelsea Hotel is Curtis Bashaw of Cape Advisors. He consulted with Matthew Abramcyk and Paul Sevigny (Cholé's brother) of Manhattan's still swinging Beatrice Inn, when designing the hotel's chic 5th Floor club. Like the Beatrice Inn, the 5th Floor has a variety of rooms to wander through, like the Living Room, the Bar, the Game Room and the Terrace Lounge. This would be a great after party spot if you're in town this Saturday to see Madonna.

Chelsea Hotel

And between now and March 31st, you can book the special recession buster- Rescue package. It includes:
* Overnight stay in Chelsea Luxe room
* Breakfast special at Teplitzky’s for two — a Stephen Starr restaurant
* Two rolls of quarters to be used to try your luck at the slots at the nearby casino, save, or just enjoy “Free Parking”
* Gas re-imbursement (a $50 gift card redeemable for gas for the return trip)
* Unexpectedly pink slipped and need to cancel? “Rain-check” and re-book for another date without penalty
* Priced at $199 per night Sunday-Thursday; $249 per night on Friday and $299 per night on Saturday

We'll meet you at the bar with the martinis!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Celebrity Solstice and Riedel Wine Glasses

Our favorite event on the Celebrity Solstice was a wine tasting guided by Max Riedel, whose family has been making crystal for over 250 years. Most notably, the Riedel wine glasses are of such quality and function that they are used almost exclusively for wine tasting and competitions world wide.

He entertained us with stories of his grandfather escaping the Russian army and falling in love with Italian women; but he also opened our eyes to the importance of the shape of the glass as a functional way to enjoy wine. We tasted four varieties from Sauvignon Blanc to Cabernet each in its appropriate glass but also in the wrong glass for that wine. It truly smelled, tasted and felt different in our mouth depending on the glass.

Mr. Riedel was so convincing that we're investigating the best places to find sets for our own homes. Williams-Sonoma has a large selection ranging in quality and price which we could use for special occasions. For Thanksgiving next week, we're going to stock up on the Pinot Noir glasses from Target. They aren't as high quality; but buying them in bulk is easier on the wallet and we usually break one between now and New Years.

Riedel Vinum Sauvignon Blanc from Williams-Sonoma (2 for $64):

Riedel Vivant Pinot Noir glasses from Target (4 for $40)

In the spirit of full disclosure, it's only fair we tell you what else we learned on the Celebrity Solstice. Bud Light is good drinking. Hear us out: one of the reasons JSG's Hope has never been on a cruise is her uncanny ability to get queasy by simply turning her head too quickly and riding in the front seat of a car definitely does it; so boats pose a serious problem. Short of the wine tasting, the only beverage that she could drink was Bud Light which was in fact a recommendation from our girlfriend Abby (2 Bud Lights and you'll feel better). You can imagine it was embarrassing to sit at the Solstice's Martini Bar and order a can of Bud Light ("in a glass please") when what we'd really like is Grey Goose martini. Life is full of compromises and surprises. Cheers!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Urban Decay Primer Potion--Two new tricks

We already know you love Ubran Decay's Eyeshadow Primer Potion, it earned the Best of Sephora award for a reason, after all. It helps all those vibrant Urban Decay shadows stick to your eyelids like glue! But did you know it's more than just an eyeshadow base?

We learned from Lyn Lynch, Education Market Trainer, that it can also work as a base for your concealer. Who knew your concealer even needed a base? But as Lyn explained it, it helps prevent your concealer from settling into fine lines, a problem we've struggled with for longer than we care to admit!

Magic trick #2: Urban Decay's Primer Potion triples as a lipstick base. Dab a little on your lips and your gloss will last a few precious hours.

Now you'll really want to buy it in the handy .34 oz size created exclusively for Sephora's 10-year anniversary! For free shipping on purchases over $25, follow the link on the lower right of this page.

Twilight the Movie

The Twilight book is one phenomenon that took us by surprise, even though we'd like to think we're up on pop culture. The book which Hope finished on the cruise and passed off to Anne this weekend, is a vampire story set in the Pacific Northwest-the perfect climate for vamps who can't hang out in bright sunny weather; but not for the reasons you think. The book is fun, and the love story is engaging and easy to believe. Our biggest complaint (or should we call it drawback) is that it takes place in a high school, with too much adolescent angst and not enough heat like Harry Potter.

In contrast, we're obsessed with the HBO series True Blood which is definitely geared for a mature audience with more gore and sex to go around.

The Twilight movie opens this Friday, November 21st. We think they did a great job casting Robert Pattinson as Edward and Kristen Stewart as Bella. Ashley Greene, who plays Edward's sister Alice, is smokin' hot in Maxim this month (yes, the SO has a subscription). We're planning on catching the movie this weekend and will give you our opinion on the rebound. Watch the preview here.

Kristen Stewart- with her gorgeous shiny auburn hair:

Ashley Greene (picture courtesy of Maxim) scores another point for brunettes:

Finally, there was some hoopla about Robert Pattinson not being as good looking as he's depicted in the book. We think the casting gurus did a fine job. What do you think?

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Celebrity Solstice Review

Celebrity Solstice
We're back--and finally recovered--from our 2 night preview cruise from Ft. Lauderdale on the brand new Celebrity Solstice. It was a blast and certainly two days of bottomless banana daiquiris and Bud Lights (more on that later) had a lot to do with it. Freebies aside, we are now converts to the idea of cruising, particularly the idea of cruising with a big group of girls.

Annie has done these 2-night cruises before, but always with a SO. This trip was by far the best, because she had Hope, Julia and Eric (Hope's husband, who did his best to sit through conversations on gray nail polish and the like) to hang out with. There was always someone who wanted to do what I wanted to do--lie by the pool, get another round of daiquiris or snack on nachos.

Celebrity Solstice

Speaking of the food--it was good, but not fantastic. We were happy we were one of the chosen few to eat in Silk Harvest, the Pan Asian restaurant. We could have eaten the Solstice Roll (with salmon, cream cheese, and avocado) for breakfast, lunch and dinner. That's the Murano restaurant below, where we sampled the silky mushroom cappuccino with Calvados. Delish!

Celebrity Solstice We took a tour of the fitness center and the AquaSpa and though we don't workout on vacation; the 180 degree view of the Atlantic was an inspiration even to us. We didn't have a chance to get a spa treatments on this trip; but we're sure it's decadent because AquaSpa uses Elemis products. They also offer medi-spa treatments including Botox and Restylane; but we still advise against doing that on a ship.

Best of all, on a cruise, you never have to worry about drinking and driving or even taking a taxi for that matter. All you have to do is get yourself to an elevator, press "7" and you're home! It's easy for those who want to call it a night early and those who want to see the sun rise.

To book a cruise on Celebrity Solstice, visit the Celebrity site.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Victoria's Secret Miami

Victoria's Secret Maiami
Seems like everyone's abuzz about this past weekend's Victoria Secret show and 2-day long party at the recently renovated Fountainebleau in Miami. We personally loved the rumors that Kate Hudson was flirting with A-Rod, who then called her "trouble". (Madonna, watch your back!)

Your invite lost in the mail? (Ours, too!) Catch some highlights from the OTT weekend on YouTube, including Gwyneth Paltrow and Parish Hilton on the Red Carpet.

A Peek Inside Their Carry On: Keep Me's Ali Kay and Anne des Barres

We spend a lot of time traveling but also a lot of time at the desk writing about it. Keep Me, an uber-stylish line of lounge wear stands out because we can wear it for both. It's made of super soft fabrics and it's flattering (like the set on the model above) and fashionable. With Christmas on the horizon, a set from Keep Me would make a great gift.

The designers, Ali Kay (below on left) and Anne des Barres (on right), were introduced by Diane Von Furstenberg (our icon!) when Anne was working for DVF and Ali was dating Diane's son. The women moved to Malibu and designed their first line which launched this spring. They travel weekly to Miami and New York and they dished about what you'll find in their carry ons.

Ali Kay (pictured below) carries Hunting Season's Oversized Weekender Tote. She fills it with:

A good book, currently The Snowball, a biography of Warren Buffett:

Favorite magazines like Fortune and Portfolio.

A Keep Me lounge jacket to keep me warm and cozy like the Skaya Lounge Jacket:

A Clout baseball cap, all black with black Clout Malibu stitched into the back.

Hand Sanitizer (a small one so that I can get through security with it!)

And her partner, Anne des Barres:

The things that are always in my carry on: my planner, the Daily Journal from Graphic Image: my blackberry, cozy socks for the plane, my Macbook Pro and my Keep Me Jordy Lounge Jacket:

Friday, November 14, 2008

On our Radar - Celebrity Solstice

Today we’re off to sunny Ft. Lauderdale to set sail on the new Celebrity Solstice ship for a two night preview cruise. We’re not generally cruisers, but we were invited by Celebrity to attend this weekend’s festivities, including the naming ceremony today and some mysterious “white party” on Saturday.

Aside from the obvious benefits of warm weather, sea air and all the free pina coladas we can drink, we’re really looking forward to exploring the ship. Especially after reading USA Today’s Gene Sloan’s initial review of the ship, “First impressions of the ship? In a word, ‘wow’!” and “The design of the ship is exquisite, with space after space that makes you gasp with surprise and amazement.”

Celebrity Solstice has an actual lawn—we’re talking real grass—on its deck where cruisers can play croquet. There’s also a glass blowing studio where you can indulge your inner artisan. What makes this ship extra special is its AquaClass Staterooms, which share the deck with the Aqua Spa. Also high up on our list is the Master Class wine bar, the specialty restaurants, including an Italian steakhouse, a pan-Asian restaurant and a creperie and Fortunes Casino.

Gene was very impressed with some of the ship’s space-saving measures that made us think Celebrity is taking a cue from Apple. Stay with us—the ship raised the beds so you can store your luggage underneath, kind of like how the first iPod had a quick wheel that later generations did away with and the new MacBook Pro has the coolest touchpad we've ever seen. (Can you tell one member of JSG just got a new laptop?)

It sounds like internet service is pretty spotty on the high seas, so we’ll report back next week!

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