Friday, April 28, 2017

Keeping Cool, John Frieda Full Volume has a Cold Shot Button.

By Laura Medina

If going "au naturel," isn't your style and it's getting hotter, give John Frieda's Full Volume Blow-Dryer a shot.

It has a Cool setting with the usual speed of low, medium, and high.

For an extra boost to set your sleek or waves, you can lock in your tresses with a Cold button.

During Summer, whether it be sticky humid or burning dry heat, this combination of Cool setting with a Cold button feels so good in getting groomed.

Give it a shot.

In Jodi Baker's series, You have to "Trust", to learn the "Truth." "Truth," the second book in her "Trust" series.

By Laura Medina

When readers left the protagonist/heroine, Anna, she's in the care of the
cute and charming young man, named Cax.  Readers were left at a cliff-hanger, whether she should "trust" Cax with her safety and life.

The second book in the "Trust" series, "Truth," Anna has to dive deep in order to learn the "Truth."

This is where the "Trust" series diverts from "Harry Potter." 

"Truth" takes a very uniquely New York spin, away from "Harry Potter"-London orientation.  As in when it dives deep, Anna and Cax have to dive deep in New York subway culture, legend, and dangers, the myth of CHUDs and homelessness.  Since the author, Jodi Baker, is from New York, "Truth" has a New York state of mind...and heart.

In any good Young Adult series, tracking the progress of the protagonist, Anna switches between the high-end Upper East Side of her grandmother and the low-down subway, in order to discover the "Truth."
In doing so, "Truth" deals with socio-economic class levels and status, bringing clarity among battling "libraries" and ancient cultures and forgotten histories that still affect us to this day.

That's the wonder about Jodi Baker.  Her years being a museum docent and trying to keep information fresh, is what makes her brilliant in taking various cultures, histories, and myths then weaving them in her "Trust" series, that forms a new basket in the fantasy/sci-fi genre.

J.K. Rowling may had built that fantasy path, using British/Roman mythology as bricks in the fantasy path but Jodi Baker is constructing a new fantasy road using a mortar of Meso-American history, dusted with Norse mythology, and good ole Egyptian and
Greek/Roman classics as foundation for her "Trust" series, and the latest and the second book, "Truth."


Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Cartier's Cannabis Afternoon Luncheon Keeps Coachella Chill & Civilized Across Generations.

By Laura Medina

Coachella has grown and evolved by leaps and bounds, from camping out on the festival's grounds to "glammping" in Palm Springs' idea of SoHo House, the Parker Hotel.

So does the idea of "hippy," it went from naturally dirty to organic of the highest order because they know how to make money.

This is represented in Cartier's idea of a speak-easy, their cannabis afternoon luncheon, where they returned cannabis to its roots, an herb to spice up a meal.

Here's the all-afternoon luncheon menu...

Since Coachella was blooming like a desert rose, there has been a few minor scuffles between the permanent retirees (some who get advantage of the festival's economic cash flow) and the party-hardy, cash-infused Millennials, who see Coachella as their Spring Break (a new-found tradition set by former Palm Springs Mayor, Sonny Bono).

Thanks to the emerging professional Millennials, this Cartier-sponsored all-afternoon luncheon, with Grey Space Art, a high-end cannabis glassware company, brought Baby Boomers, the new Gen-X establishment, and emerging Millennials together for a garden party.  A chilled luncheon that brought all generations together, in a civilized setting, a pleasant reaction to the twenty-fifth anniversary to the Rodney King and the L.A. Riots.

This new, matured use of cannabis as a food ingredient that brings people together, shows how to create peace, love, and understanding in this day and age.

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Pre-Proto Coachella, Venice Art Crawl Takes Root at Playa Vista's Runway but Its Heart is Still in Venice.

By Laura Medina

Before Coachella morphed into very much commercialized, Spring Ritual behemoth, that other music festivals are trying or dying to live up to, there was the Venice Art Crawl.  The hippy granddad to Coachella's pseudo-hippies or Bourgeois Bohemians, hippies who know how to make money.

Let's get back to basic.

Before Coachella the Bobo/Spring Ritual Bacchanal (this scribe isn't complaining), there were pure artists using the Spring Equinox, the Vernal Equinox (not the gym chain) to raise funds to further their authentic alternative living on what used to be cheap Venice.

Uh, not anymore.

Coachella isn't about struggling artists, unless they're grateful for the corporate sponsorship and the promotions.  Well, Venice Art Crawl isn't in Venice anymore due to raising rent and cramped space and no parking.

They may have moved to the more spacious, roomier, newer Runway event venue at Playa Vista, yes "Silicon Beach," but their heart is still in Venice.

Abbot Kinney ex-stalwart, Hal's Bar & Grill followed it's former locals to Playa Vista and taken root there.

These ex-Venetians haven't forgotten those rich enough to be left behind in Venice.  It threw a fundraising dinner with an one-night-only menu for artists struggling with the rent.

For those who can only afford the fundraising art sale, there are hors d'oeuvres that fulfill all taste spectrum, from vegan mushroom toast to bacon-wrapped figs to collagen-enriched shrimp cocktails.

It's still rock n' roll with iconography of rock n' roll and blues legends, being used to raise huge funds.  See, it's a precursor to Coachella.

Music sculpture...

The chill tent lounge, any shade is welcoming after Coachella...

Yes, it's the more localized version to the huge concert-turned-season signaler but it still remembers its roots; and it never forget where it came from.

Monday, April 24, 2017

Way Steps Up from Noxzema, Fresh's Black Tea Instant Perfecting Mask & Lotus Youth Preserve Radiance Lotion are a Gulp of Iced Tea for Thirsty Skin.

By Laura Medina

These Fresh mask and moisturizer may not jump out immediately as instant sun burn relievers, but after party-ing out in the desert...yes, the new Spring ritual called Coachella...or splitting time in Vegas, these Fresh classics instant sate thirsty, burnt skin.

The jar appears classic but the use of food ingredients are innovative as the ingredients are timeless...

No wonder Black Tea Instant Perfecting Mask feels like a drink of iced tea for sun-burnt, dry skin. They whip Kombucha, (Black Tea Ferment) the basis for their Black Tea Line, into rich-feeling but very light texture cream that skin immediately drinks up, leaving a relieving, refreshed, cooling sensation.  That's "ah-ha" awing moment.  Healthier and better than Noxzema.

What makes this mask (which this scribe uses as overnight cream) even more refreshing is they mix in...

Lychee Seed Extract supporting natural collagen.  After blasting your collagen in the burning sun, it needs the additional support.

Another boost of water, Jicima Root Juice because it hydrates and nourishes.

Black Tea Instant Perfecting Mask is like wearing a tall glass of classic iced tea.

Another quick gulp of juice for the skin is Fresh's Lotus Youth Preserve Radiance Lotion.

Instead of splashing real sticky fruit juice on your face out in the heat, you're best soothing Fresh's Lotus Youth Preserve Radiance Lotion all over face, minus the stickiness and the flies.

The way it's formulated, it's a fast-absorbing lotion formulated with Fresh’s Super 7 Complex, which is specifically designed to minimize and prevent visible signs of aging, deliver intense hydration, and boost radiance. The formula also contains star fruit extract, which helps preserve and protect the skin from accelerated signs of aging caused by free radicals. Super 7 Complex is a hydrating and radiance-boosting blend of seven supercharged ingredients that promote a youthful-looking complexion (lotus flower extract, blue-green algae extract, hibiscus fruit extract, fig fruit extract, vitamins C and E, and vegetable glycerol), while star fruit extract is proven to protect the skin from free radical damage, improving elasticity and reducing early signs of aging.

Basically, it's a smoothie in face lotion form.

Who would had thought these Fresh classics would have thirsty skin drink up instantly with nourishing ingredients.

Iced tea and pressed juice for the skin...without the stickiness and the buzzing flies.

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Pampering Post-Coachella Skin while Pampering the Earth, Ole Henriksen Face/Body Spa. 

By Laura Medina

It's fitting that folks are unleashing their "inner hippy" on the last and second weekend of Coachella, on Earth Day for that matter.

This scribe knows from experience, that your dermis is hurting from sunburn. It needs tender, loving care stat!  But, it has to be all-natural, in homage to Mother Nature that you were just done celebrating.

Ole Henriksen Face/Body Spa has the TLC your skin is craving for, it's "Coachella Packages"

Post Coachella Essentials - $170
55 minute Spa Melt Infrared Sweat Blanket session
 50 minute Deep Tissue Massage with free organic oil enhancement

Post Coachella Bliss - $265 
Free 20 minute Essentials Bathing Ritual
 50 minute Clarifying Complexion Treatment 
50 minute Deep Tissue Massage

Royal Coachella - $550
Free 45 minute Moroccan Bathing Ritual
60 minute Return To Nature Massage
80 minute Red Carpet Complexion Treatment

For each package, before April 3oth, Ole Henriken Spa will plant 50 trees in your name.

Isn't it great to feel good to be good?

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Pandora's & T-Mobile's Pool Party and Lucky Brand Denim's "Desert Jam" Pool Picnic to Quench Coachella's Thirst.

By Laura Medina

Yeah, yeah, everyone who hears a whisper, a myth, or caught a glimpse, knows about the concert festival, the Coachella Music Festival itself, an all-night affair that stretches across three-nights in a desert...close to Palm Springs and the exclusive rich enclaves of the Inland Empire, normally populated by wealthy retirees...and bored teenagers.

The true "Coachella-ians" know they can be styled and prepped for the nights ahead, during the afternoon-only style lounges.

But, Coachella has now become a Rite of Spring, returning Easter weekend to it's pre-Christian, not so snobby, plain black and white roots of fertility, renewal, and releasing one's tumescence
among thousands of people who are in the same state.  Yes, it's tribal but it's glamorous hippy tribal.  It's nice and a relief to know, that you are not alone.

True Coachellians knows the real parties celebrating Spring, are the ones that involves hydrating while getting revved up for the real concert.

Lucky Brand Denim's "Desert Jam" pool picnic was a pool party that served Americana hot dogs and burger sliders. 

Reinforcing the Americana "Made in California" dream, Lucky Brand Denim monogramed bandanas to shield your face when the dust storms hit during the concert.

The people, behind the pool picnic, knows that Coachella days run straight into the nights, running long and hot.

The folks quenched people's thirsts with the hottest commodities, chilled and iced Cold Brew High Brew Coffee in Mexican Vanilla, Double Espresso, and Black & Bold.  They do all the hot brewing for you, so you can just chill and get energized for the real concert.

CORE Water knows this is an optimal time to launch their refreshingly, healthy CORE Organic flavored waters in: Watermelon Lemonade, Peach Mango, Pomegranate Blue Acai, Orange Clementine, Coconut Colada, and Orchard Pear, so the harty-party dehydrated can quench their thirst with something healthier than soda. In fact, they were cocktail bases to mix up with Deep Eddy Vodka; and that's refreshingly delicious on they're on.

People hid out in Homeaway tent and get their manicures on...

Or, got limbered for the night ahead by getting a free massage at the Zeel table...

But, Lucky Brand Denim saves the best for last.

On Saturday afternoon, Noah Cyrus, Miley Cyrus' baby sister, did a free set for an hour, right before people loaded up on the free shuttle bus to the real concert festival.

On Sunday afternoon, it was Franco V.'s turn...

Pandora's + T-Mobile's pool party was a pure pool party, more fitness than food.  But hey, who's complaining...

Their pool party is now a Coachella tradition, running for three years straight, in the same location. One reason there's barely any food, is that, it's directly behind a Target, a McDonalds, a Trader Joe's, and a frozen yogurt shop.  If you want refreshments, you can walk to either one of them...

Charli XCX manned the DJ booth at the waterfall, hovering the swimmers...

Pandora's + T-Mobile's pool party proves that you're still the boss...

Thank god, the open bar was free-flowing to keep the heat down...

This pool party was more of a fitness party, life-sized game of chess, anyone?

People leaving, were treated to customized-frosted shortbread cookies and freshly screen-printed tote bags that are good for shopping or collecting swag.

Coachella pool parties are a good way to get energized for a long, hot concert well past midnight.  You gotta get hydrated some how and some way.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Topshop Topman Keeps It Chillin' at their "Escape" Oasis Style Lounge during the Coachella Craziness.

By Laura Medina


The most fun stuff doesn't always have to happen at night.

Sometimes, the coolest and chillin' stuff happens in broad daylight.

Yes, you all may be dismayed by the "corporate/branding" of Coachella.

They popped up, in the first place, because those do paid $500 for 3-nights General Admission and $1,000 for VIP admission, didn't bring a lot of clothes and whatever is left, went towards the hotel room.

Fashion and skincare style lounges came to the rescue, for the festival style clueless.

They'll style you appropriately for the hot, desert sun, prep your skin then bedazzle you in hologram, shimmering "unicorn makeup."  The flower crown is done.

There have been some epic hype about fashion-meets-music mergers, such as Revolve + Billboard Lounges and commercially-crazy Ulta Beauty & Nordstorm-sponsored PopSugar "Hotel".

But if it's recharge, relief, and chill before actually party-ing like crazy at the actual Coachella Festival Grounds, you can't go wrong with Topshop/Topman Escape at Korakia Resort Cottages.

Sly hidden among Downtown Palm Springs Mod Suburb bungalows, lays Mediterranean-meets-Morocco styled pensione, fancy term for bed & breakfast guesthouses, the Korakia Pensione.  The complex of vacationing bungalows and villas, done in white stucco Mediterran terra cottas.

Topshop/Topman turned Korakia Pensione into a desert oasis for the festival gypset, where they cater to festival fashion and beauty need.

It's the most civilized because it's purpose is to chill.  You save your craziness at the night.

To help you get ready,  Korakia Resort Cottages gladly offered free massages to restore your energy or release last night's energy.

To restore your sun-burnt complexion, Skin Laundry set-up a pop-up facial spa to baby-pamper your skin.

Topshop/Topman proved that debauchery can be healthy...and considerate...

After guests were swigging delightfully light, citrus-tequila cocktails for an hour...

They rejoice when they spotted the Pressed Juicery refrigerator, fully stocked.  The dehydrated grabbed them by the arm-full.  Empty then restocked on the hour, by the hour.

Go beyond the oasis indulgence and the Shangri-La escapism, you gotta remember, the Topshop/Topman Style Lounge is a service, styling people in getting Summer Festival ready.  It was a two-day lounge.

The first day lunch buffet was a light, diet-conscious Greek and Chinese vegan affair.

The vegan Mandarin Tangerine Chinese Salad with a lot of crunchy silvered almonds and crunchies was a delightfully, refreshing hit...

The second day lunch buffet has more protein yet light options.  Bowls full of crab salad, ahi tuna poke, and trout fish eggs, aka caviar...out in the desert.  Mission possible, mission accomplished.

Still vegan and Daisy Dukes friendly, Parmesan Caesar Salad, Quinoa Salad, and very Californian Strawberry Arugula Salad.

Even hangover brunch ready, greek yogurt buffet...

Then, huge chunks of watermelon, honeydew, and cantaloupe with fried onion-rings sprinkled crab/ahi tuna poke/caviar salad and Pressed Juicery to get you refueled and hydrated for party-hopping...

It wasn't all healthy.  That would be boring.  Sugarfina brought treats...and debut new juicy flavors.

Sugarfina specially renamed their Cowboy prickly pear (cactus) juiced gummies, "California Cactus" just for Coachella.

Another juicy new flavor is Sugarfina's Pink Grapefruit Flamingo gummies.

Green Cowboy Cactus & Pink Grapefruit Flamingo gummies make for a preppy resort duo, appropriate for Palm Springs, Coachella party-central.

It wasn't all "dead quiet" in the desert oasis. DJ Avi of Naked Rhythm pumped some live conga beats over his DJing tracks.

In between being styled, bedazzled, and pampered and swigging beverages-any type of drinks-folks tossed bocci balls in the interior courtyard.

Paul Bowles must be spinning in his grave with envy.  "Coachella-ians" are doing what he tried to do for so long but too early.

Now, onto the Pandora/T-Mobile and Lucky Brand Denim pool parties...