June 25, 2008

Hot Shells and More

My number one recommendation before dieting, exercise or flying is to find yourself a good massage. This one is heavenly:

Never a big fan of hot stone massages, I was a little dubious about trying the Hot Shell massage at Aquaterra Spa--it sounded like it could be painful. My masseuse explained that the shells were discovered in a village where the people were using them to heat food, etc., and turns out they are a perfect addition to a great massage. The hot shells are actually smooth and unlike hot stones, they're almost soft. The combination of the heated shells with the oil is exquisite--I highly recommend it!

You don't have to believe me, but please do--as a beauty editor, I try out hundreds of "organic/green" beauty products throughout the year. Peter Lamas, aside from being one of the most pleasant people I have encountered in the field of beauty, is also a walking font of information about the latest cutting edge discoveries in natural cosmetics. I feel so fortunate that our paths have crossed--every time we chat, he's so passionate about creating safe beauty alternatives for women that the time just flies. I'm a huge fan of the Lamas Beauty Soy Hydrating Shampoo and Soy Balancing Conditioner featuring Certified Organic botanicals for Chemically Treated, Dry, Damaged Hair. I can't tell you the number of "organic/natural/green" shampoos I've tried that left funky residue on my hair and me wishing that I didn't know how bad conventional shampoo is for one's health. I love his hair products because they leave my hair feeling like I just used a luxurious shampoo and conditioner and best of all, they're good for you too!

I would be remiss if I didn't mention Lamas Beauty's fabulous Paraben-free Spa Sensuals Hand Cream and Chinese Herb Body Lotion, both with Certified Organic Botanicals. They are the perfect consistency, keep your skin hydrated, and smell fabulous. I rest my case.

I used to carry packets of Emergen-C around in my purse but the fine people at Emergen-C have gone one step farther and made it a breeze to stay cool and sane in a low-cal way. Every bottle of Emergen-C Health and Energy Water is formulated with 1,000 mg of vitamin C plus several mineral complexes to support good health and B vitamins for a burst of non-caffeinated energy. Made with purified water and all natural sweeteners (no corn syrup, preservatives, or caffeine), you can indulge in Dragon Fruit, Raspberry, Lemon Lime, and Tangerine--and they're just 50 calories per serving. Available at Whole Foods, GNC and natural food stores nationwide.

Don't worry, Armour Beauty Lip Gloss will stay on no matter how many Emergen-C Waters you drink. Started in 2007 by Theo Kogan (from Theo & The Skyscrapers/Lunachicks fame) and handbag designer Allison Burns, Armour Beauty features 14 Rock n'Roll shades of lip gloss that are long wearing, cruelty free and environmentally friendly with healing ingredients. Each gloss is named after Theo and Allison's favorite rock songs, clubs, and legendary icons. I'm a fan of "Nirvana", a sheer gloss with a pink tint and golden shimmer and "Cat Club", a sheer hot pink--perfect for summer. You can order online at amourbeauty.com or find the glosses at Patricia Fields in NYC and Lake in Los Angeles.

I always think when it comes to unwinding, more is really more. One of my favorite places to enjoy a fantastic massage is at the Hotel Intercontinental in Century City. The staff is always wonderful and you are able to enjoy the steam room, sauna, outdoor pool and whirlpool and then relax for a moment with hot tea in the Tranquility Garden before being led to one of three private villas, each equipped with a deep soaking bath, shower and garden area. There are a variety of massages that you can chose from and each is customized with the Comfort Zone scent that best suits your mood.

The finishing touch for a great summer beauty routine is indulging in a luxurious manicure/pedicure. The Hotel Intercontinental offers some great nail services. Using the exclusive Lippmann Collection of polishes, their hand and foot treatments are tailored to your particular nail needs while you relax at the Spa nail bar and pedicure thrones. I enjoy the Manicure Classic and Pedicure Classic, which include cleansing, fruity peel exfoliation, nail care and polish. Both manicure and pedicure each last for about 45 minutes. The Spa now offers a Fitness Manicure and Pedicure for active people who don't want polish but want a clean and buffed look. For more spa information or to book a treatment, you can email iclaspa@ihg.com or call 310-552-0425

Hoping you are inspired to relax with some healthy and fun summer treats. I'll be back soon with more on shopping and champagne tomorrow!


Anonymous said...

your friend danny is hysterical! does he have a blog?

Mary Jo Matsumoto said...

Hi Danny, I'm glad you finally figured out how to use the comment button.

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