Everybody wins with Love Bravery

LoveBraveryItems

There is something to be said for the people that stand up for others and promote kindness in this crazy world of ours. Especially now, especially with everything that goes on, with what you see in the news every single day.

We need more doses of inspiration, people who practice decency and kindness, as opposed those who feel superior, who want to tell the world how to behave and act and love, those who judge and want to control in the name of “traditional values” and spiritual righteousness. I’m really over those people! Enough already. ¿Pues que se creen?

So on this note I was excited to hear about Love Bravery, a new collection of clothing and accessories that inspires compassion and combats prejudice, designed by none other than than the fabulous Lady Gaga and Elton John. They teamed up to create a limited edition line of clothing, accessories and novelty items, all exclusively at Macy’s and macys.com.

I recently had a chance to try out a sample of items. Among their accessories, I really liked a few pieces for daily use. The black backpack and water bottle is something I can easily carry throughout the day. It’s a good size and fit, not too heavy, just the right size, especially for the water bottle which is very practical. I also liked one of their scarves in black and white.

My favorite item however was the throwback vintage cassette tape portable battery charger. If you’re like me,  there’s never enough juice for my cell phone. I need more battery life! With this, you charge it at home and then use as needed. Keeps your phone alive for hours. I grew up in the 80’s and cassettes were a staple of my youth. So to be reminded me of all those mixed tapes I used to make – aww… it made me smile. The cassette tape lives on in Gaga’s and Sir Elton’s world, even if it’s disguised as a battery pack.

With your purchase of any of these and the full line of items, 25% of the price goes back to benefit the Born This Way Foundation and the Elton John AIDS Foundation- so you’re doing good and looking stylish. And spreading the Love Bravery.

Yay for Love Bravery! A cool collection and a great cause. Go get it now. And be kind to people, even if they’re different than you. For Goodness Sake!

(*This is not a paid post. Macy’s provided items for photos and all opinions here are my own. Por su atención, ¡muchas gracias!)

 

LoveBraveryBottle

Love Bravery water bottle. Love the graffiti colors. Stay hydrated, people!

LoveBraveryBackpack

Love Bravery nylon backpack. A perfect size bag for on the go. Added the scarf just for fun.

LoveBraveryCharger

It looks like your cassette tapes from the 80’s, complete with the clear plastic case. But it’s totally necessary for your 2016 lifestyle and cell phone juice. Don’t leave home without your battery charger by Love Bravery.

LoveBraveryScarf

Black and white is my favorite color combo.

WaystoWear

You can wear your Love Bravery scarf different ways and they all look fabulous.

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Lady Gaga during the launch of Love Bravery at Macy’s Herald Square New York on May 4th. Love Lady Gaga!! Photo credit by @Macys on Instagram.

 

 

 

Getting my beauty fix at Bluemercury and Macy’s

We’re already in February and how I sense 2016 is flying by.

My birthday is coming up in 2 weeks and I’m feeling the effect of the number (getting up there!) and the image in the mirror au naturel. “OY!!! WHAT THE…???” seems to be my go to reaction, usually after doing a double-take in the morning. ¿Pues qué me pasó?! Is this the new reality?

Needless to say, I’m going through an evolving/complicated relationship with beauty and beauty products.

Love them, use them for a bit, discard them, and then I’ll want to try the next new thing. You say wrinkle eliminators, crease fillers, skin savers, dark spot erasers…I’ll bite. But there’s also a skeptic inside, telling me: you know this is too good to be true, it’ll never work, it won’t deliver. And yet! I want the dream and the promise. I want skin that glows, that represents youth or at least gives me the illusion of my younger self. (But that’s another issue altogether.)

So I was intrigued when I recently got an invite to the opening of Bluemercury, a new concept at Macy’s of a beauty spa within the store featuring high end luxury brands, products and treatments.  I like the idea. It seems like a chance to up the ante on my beauty game and try new things. These are products you don’t normally see at their counters and brands I’ve been meaning to try forever. Why hello, Creme de la Mer! Look, there’s Darphin, a French brand I only read about in magazines…

There are 2 Bluemercury shops that just opened in the L.A. Area, one in Macy’s Santa Anita and one in Macy’s Rancho Cucamonga. I’m looking forward to more openings on the west side (we love these things over here too!) and hopefully go get a facial soon.

My lovely friends at Macy’s were kind enough to send me a goodie bag with a sample of the Bluemercury M-61 line, a proprietary brand that seems to do all the things I need for my beauty regimen, doesn’t do animal testing (a big deal in my book) and doesn’t use undesirable ingredients (me dan miedo todos los “sulfates” y esas cosas).

Bluemercury m61

Bluemercury beauty bag courtesy of Macy’s.

I’ll give you an update on the products after I use them for a few weeks and hopefully get a chance to visit Bluemercury soon. In the meantime, here are some pictures courtesy of Macy’s* from their recent launch.

Happy February everyone, let’s make it happy and healthy and beauty-full.

(*Full disclosure: This is not a sponsored post. I was invited by Macy’s to their event and received the beauty samples to try out. The opinions expressed here are my own.)

IMG_5760

The complete M-61 line is available only at Bluemercury.

Nars

All the colors of the rainbow at the Nars display. So pretty!

Darphin

I’m curious to try out the Darphin line, French women really know their beauty products.

 

 

Getting heart healthy by guest posting for Go Red For Women

Before February is gone, and considering that this month is American Heart Month, I’d like to take a moment to share some nice news.

I was recently invited by the Los Angeles Chapter of the American Heart Association (AHA) and Macy’s to do some guests posts on AHA-LA’s social media pages as part of their “Go Red For Women” Campaign. It was a week-long project that made me realize how important heart health is for women and how much we can do to prevent heart disease. Macy’s is a founding sponsor of the Go Red For Women campaign, having donated more than 50 million to the cause since 2004. This helps create awareness and ultimately save lives.

It also happened to be my birthday last week, so it coincided with the fact that I am on this health awareness kick. I realize I am no longer a “spring chicken” and I’m not getting younger but it finally clicked that it’s not just about fighting wrinkles with beauty creams, it’s about healthy habits to maintain a healthy body from the inside out. (Me llegó tarde el mensaje, pero me llegó!)

So in writing these guest posts and in trying to make them interesting, I realized, como cantan la Whitney Houston y la Chaka-Khan, that “I am every woman, it’s all in meeee.” A healthy habit usually starts with motivation, an idea that you want to be better, feel better, look better, stay better. And I found some great info on the AHA website to stay motivated, including recipes, tips, and  stats that make you want to go and ask every woman you know to please monitor their blood pressure and their sodium intake, to get active, to watch their weight, to take care of themselves first.

Yes, heart disease is the #1 killer of women in the US. One of every 3 women die of heart illness every year, of every age. In my case, there is a history of heart disease in my family, on both sides, so even though I am healthy now, this is something I need to monitor from now on. I take care of my grandmother, mi Mama Lilia, who is 95 and has a few conditions including high blood pressure, and it really is something you need to control every day, with your diet and your physical activity. It’s a lifestyle that you have to commit to, if you want to stay healthy.

So with all this in mind, I decided to “Go Red” and try to support this cause by taking care of me, by doing a little shopping at Macy’s, and by making my newfound mission a bit more entertaining. Follow the links below to take you to the sites and hopefully you’ll be inspired to learn more about your heart. There is a wealth of useful information, trust me. There’s also still time to support the AHA and Go Red Campaign by purchasing a few key items at Macy’s, and with your purchase a donation is made to this cause.

American Heart Association website: Click here: www.heart.org

American Heart Association LA Instagram: https://instagram.com/americanheart_la/

American Heart Association LA Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ahagreaterla

American Heart Association LA Twitter: https://twitter.com/amheartla

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Un regalito de belleza con el Latina Beauty Box de Macy’s

¿Cómo van sus New Year’s Resolutions?

Uno de mis propósitos este año fue to take care of myself.

Lets just say that my wellness/beauty/maintenance rituals are not up to par. Yes, I have neglected myself in this aspect and yes, it’s a concern to do something about it.

Así que tuve un “habla” conmigo misma y decidí a ponerme al tiro. Time to step up my game because I’m not getting younger and because, como dice Salma Hayek, “you have to take care of your beauty, because if you don’t, your beauty may get offended and may leave you.” (Well I’m paraphrasing, but I heard she said it somewhere. Maybe if you read it with an accent it sounds more like la Hayek-Pinault.)

Entonces, me puse muy contenta cuando mis amiguitas de Macy’s sent me their Latina Beauty Box to start the year off right. Yay Macy’s!!

Tiene un montón de samples de todo tipo, desde cremitas para mejorar el cutis con efectos “anti-aging”, mascara for mile high lashes, cosmetics, fragrances and other goodies.

All the goodies from the Latina Beauty Box I received from Macy's. Thank you!

All the goodies from the Latina Beauty Box I received from Macy’s. Thank you!

I have tried a few of their things and I’m especially liking the Shiseido Power Infusing Concentrate. It’s made for smoothing out wrinkles and feels really light. I think it makes me glow a little bit, quien sabe, maybe it’s wishful thinking but I’m enjoying it so far.

Another fabulous item was Lancome Grandiose Wide Angle Fan Effect Mascara. I am loving the brush, never seen anything like it. It’s a little twisted so it reaches all the lashes, every little corner, so they look quite bigger than they are.

The brush from Lancome Grandiose Wide Angle Fan Effect Mascara is amazing. never seen anything like this.

The brush from Lancome Grandiose Wide Angle Fan Effect Mascara is pretty cool. Never seen anything like this.

A before pic without mascara.

A before pic without mascara.

After!

After!

And I was really happy with the Clinique Box, which had a hand dark spot corrector, a CC cream, which I had been curious to try, a fabulous gloss in Black Honey, which is a flattering color even though it looks dark in the tube, and the repairwear firming cream. Todo muy padre!

Enjoying all my Clinique items very much.

Enjoying all my Clinique items very much.

A big thank you to Macy’s for hooking me up. I am enjoying everything and it’s making it easier to maintain one of my resolutions this year.

 

 

Baking #SimpleandSweet cookies for Santa Claus

I hope everyone had a Feliz Navidad and is enjoying the Holidays. I for one am a happy gal. I’ve practically been in my pj’s and eating “recalentado” for the last 24 hours. La Familia is in town with all the “sobrinitos”. Life is good!

This year was I was particularly enthused with the idea of holiday baking. You probably wouldn’t know this but in my house they call me the Cookie Monster. “C is for Cookie, and Cookie is for me” is one of my favorite songs, and for good reason. I LOVE LOVE LOVE a good cookie. (I have always had the doubt: how do you say Cookie Monster en español, “Monstruo Comegalletas” or “Monstruo Galletero”?)

You can imagine my joy, then, when this little box of happiness showed up at the door. The good people over at Macy’s somehow know of my love of cookies and thought I’d enjoy this holiday baking kit. Inside the box were a mason jar with all the ingredients, plus 2 cookie cutters, a wonderful spatula from Martha Stewart with a baking conversion table and a set of instructions.

This #SimpleandSweet Kit came courtesy from Macy's.  All included, easy breezy, baking set.

This #SimpleandSweet Kit came courtesy from Macy’s. All included, easy breezy, baking set.

So I got to work. You know what I love most about this kit? Everything is easy and you just need to add 2 ingredients: butter and eggs. And even though I started baking pretty late in the evening, it probably took all of 20 minutes to produce a fresh batch of delicious cookies.

Just needed to add 2 eggs and a stick of butter and mix. How easy is that?

Just needed to add 2 eggs and a stick of butter and mix. How easy is that?

Cookie batter ready to go int he oven for 15 minutes.

Cookie batter ready to go int he oven for 15 minutes.

Ready!

Ready!

Once the cookies were done, my nephews kept asking how many cookies we would leave for Santa. We all thought since he would be busy with his overnight deliveries, he would need a good deal of cookies to make it through. My nephew Luis Emilio, who is 4 years old, even suggested we leave a cup of coffee just so Santa wouldn’t fall asleep on his route. We all agreed that was a great idea and thought he would surely appreciate the gesture.

Cafe y galletitas para Santa Claus.

Cafe y galletitas para Santa Claus.

On Christmas morning, the cookies had all but disappeared. My sobrinitos were quite pleased when I told them that Santa loved his midnight munchies.  The best part about this is that the cookies were so good and so easy to make. They were instant crowd pleasers and made my inner Monstruo Galletero very happy.

Celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month @Macys

October flew by and I don’t know about you but it was busy, busy, busy. Where does the time go? Can’t believe the Holidays are practically here, but that’s another story.

I wanted to recap a few noteworthy items that happened this month since it was Hispanic Heritage Month and since there were lots of interesting things going on.

Macy’s (yes, your Macy’s store) had a lot of great activities, from Fashion and Style Panels, to the annual AIDS Walk in LA, to Día de los Muertos Celebrations. I had a chance to participate with them as part of their freelance team and thought I’d share some of the event highlights.

To begin with, they had a fabulous style tour “Macy’s Celebrates Hispanic Heritage Month- Los Influyentes” with 3 amazing Latinas that represent fashion, style, culture, music and social media. They are Kika Rocha, former fashion director for People en Español and muy reconocida style expert with her blog “De Tacones y Más”; Julie Sariñana, the wildly popular blogger for “Sincerely Jules”; and singer and actress Jasmine Villegas, who has a huge following on social media and just released her new album. This tour visited cities like New York, Chicago, Miami, San Antonio, Santa Clara and San Diego and these ladies talked about being an influential Latina in this digital age, as well as where they get their inspiration from and the ambition you need to pursue your dreams. Basically, they gave us their insights on how las mujeres somos lo máximo and that we have it all para lograr lo que queremos.

During the San Diego stop on October 4th in Fashion Valley, the lovely Martha Gil de Montes from Macy’s moderated the event, and everybody had a fabulous time. Here are some pictures, courtesy from Macy’s. (Great pics by Chris Eusebio.)

The Hispanic Heritage Month

Macy’s celebrates Hispanic Heritage Month with their “Los Influyentes” panel. From left, Martha Gil de Montes, Kika Rocha, Julie Sariñana and Jasmine V., in San Diego, Ca. (Photo credit: Chris Eusebio Photography.)

Full house at the event at Macy's Fashion Valley, San Diego, Ca. (Photo credit: Chris Eusebio Photography.)

Full house at the event at Macy’s Fashion Valley, San Diego, Ca. (Photo credit: Chris Eusebio Photography.)

Kika Rocha, style and fashion expert from

Kika Rocha, style and fashion expert from “De Tacones y Más”; Julie Sariñana, from “Sincerely Jules”; and Jasmine V, singer and actress. (Photo credit: Chris Eusebio Photography.)

Martha Gil de Montes and Kika share a laugh with the audience. (Photo credit: Chris Eusebio Photography.)

Martha Gil de Montes and Kika Rocha share a laugh with the audience. (Photo credit: Chris Eusebio Photography.)

The Fall fashion trends were part of the event. (Photo credit: Chris Eusebio Photography.)

The Fall fashion trends were part of the event. (Photo credit: Chris Eusebio Photography.)

Me encanta trabajar con estas dos mujeres admirables y talentosas: Martha Gil de Montes, Macy's Media Relations y Ariana Cabral, fashion stylist and author of La Catrina de la Moda blog.

Me encanta trabajar con estas dos mujeres admirables y talentosas: Martha Gil de Montes, Macy’s Media Relations y Ariana Cabral, fashion stylist and author of La Catrina de la Moda blog. (Photo credit: Chris Eusebio Photography.)

Next up, the 30th Annual AIDS Walk LA took place on October 12th and Team Macy’s again volunteered for this event and hosted their VIP breakfast at The Abbey. This is an event dear to my heart and I’ve had a chance to photograph it for 4 years now. It’s always so exciting to see people come out at the crack of dawn to do a 10K and raise money and awareness for AIDS Project Los Angeles. There were around 30 thousand people and we walked all throughout West Hollywood and West LA, enjoying the sights and the community. Bravo to everyone who came out to support, especially Team Macy’s who does such a great job with the fundraising. Thanks to Olivia, Joy, Dan and Art for the good times. Here are some pix by yours truly.

AIDS Walk LA main stage 2014.

AIDS Walk LA main stage 2014.

Team Macy's photo right before the start of the walk. (Photo credit: CBGRAPHY)

Team Macy’s photo right before the start of the walk. (Photo credit: CBgraphy.)

Durinr the walk, we ran into Paula Abdul and she was sooooo nice to everybody.

During the walk, we ran into Paula Abdul and she was super nice, posing for pictures with everybody.

En route. walking on Beverly and La Cienega, right past the Beverly Center.

En route. walking on Beverly and La Cienega, right past the Beverly Center.

Included in this trio of events, an amazing Día de los Muertos Celebration for families over at the Macy’s Montebello store. It was FUN!!! They had live Mariachi music, book reads, coloring tables, face painting, Catrinas, agua dulce and pan de muerto. No detail went unnoticed. Día de los Muertos is quickly becoming one of the most celebrated events here in L.A. and they outdid themselves with all the activities. So creative! Definitely an event to keep in mind for next year. (Felicidades Diana y Stephanie, les quedó super bonito todo.)

Macys Dia de Muertos altar

They had a beautiful altar at the Día de Muertos Celebration in Macy’s Montebello.

You could pose for pictures with this good looking Catrina pair. So elegant!

You could pose for pictures with this good looking Catrina pair. So elegant!

Great group kids performed to the tunes of Jarabe Tapatio y El Son de la Negra.

Great group kids performed to the tunes of Jarabe Tapatio y El Son de la Negra.

¡No hay nada como el Mariachi en vivo!

¡No hay nada como el Mariachi en vivo!

Book reading with the authors of

Book reading with Eric Gonzalez and Eric Haegar, authors of “Rosita y Conchita” had all the kids mesmerized.

Everyone got in the creative spirit. There was an arts and crafts table for making flores de papel crepe.

Everyone got in the creative spirit. There was an arts and crafts table for making flores de papel crepe.

Para celebrar el Día del Padre

Y de repente me encuentro en pleno mes de junio, a few short days away from the start of el Mundial World Cup Brasil 2014, with an interesting conundrum for Father’s Day: Do I get my Dad a present he really wants or do I get him something I would like for him to have and maybe inspire him to be more trendy?

Interesting question, which can only be resolved, knowing my Dad, by getting him 2 gifts. Eso y más se merece el “Rostro” (así le dicen de cariño a mi Pops). The trendy thing we have to work on, because he has a “classic” look he does not like to stray away from. Basically, azul marino de pies a cabeza. Quien sabe, a lo mejor y lo convencemos de usar camisas de cuadritos- mínimo!

¿Ustedes ya tienen regalo listo para su Papá?

As part of a video production I recently worked on (behind the scenes) with Macy’s for Father’s Day gifts, below is a video link where you can get great ideas on what to get for your Dad. The beautiful Martha Gil de Montes, from Macy’s, presents regalos para celebrar el Día del Padre. Hay un poco de todo: moda, zapatos, relojes, lociones y más.

You have a few more days to choose something, so make sure it’s something nice, a muy buen precio (usen sus cupones de la Macy’s) y algo que le vaya a gustar a su Papá.

Les deseo muy feliz Father’s Day a todos los Padres, pero especialmente al mío, que es el mejor Papá del “mundo-mundial” y al que quiero tanto. Love you Dad!