Goodbye for Nau

In April, a new store, Nau, open its doors in the Beverly Center. Nau was a store dedicated to "the balancing of beauty, performance and sustainability... from developing better, more environmentally friendly fabrics to raising the bar for functional, elegant designs." I was curious to check it out, and, a month later, when I finally made it through the West Hollywood traffic, the employees of Ben Sherman informed me the company went out of business.

Needless to say, e-hop, skip, and jump to for 50% off of the rest of their entire line. This will be until July 31st.

N[au], if you’re concerned that you won't have an asset for clothing made out of cornmeal or whatever is considered "environmentally friendly", have no fear. On August 1st, some former Nau employees will re-launch with a new partner, Horny Toad, Inc. Contrary to my first impression, Horny Toad is a Santa Barbara-based lifestyle apparel company and not a sex-toy boutique for the reptile demographic.


Got Flakes? Get This.

Dandruff shampoos are like hot guys in bands. They have all kinds of promise but, by God, they smell terrible.

Sometimes, there are a few rare exceptions. Case in point:

L'Oreal brand PureOlogy just came out with a sweet-scented solution to those of you previously condemned to a shower uglified by Selsun blue bottles and tortured by "tingling" scalps.

Their dander-busting Hydrate shampoo and conditioner lay on the moisture, smell amazing, and come in cool silver long-neck bottles that won't tarnish the beauty of your little cleansing oasis. Major bonus? No damage to your color!


Barton's Bags

Mischa Barton's line of handbags hits British stores (John Lewis, Debenhams, and Fenwicks) on July 2. There are 30 designs and they range from $50-$350.
She swears she actually designed them herself.

Would you buy a Mischa bag?
Yes, they're cute.
Maybe - I'd need to see the other 28.
Nah, too expensive.
Hell no, they're fugly.


Coming Soon: Vibrating Mascara

For real. On July 17th Estee Lauder is launching a $30 Turbolash Mascara with a battery-operated wand that releases tiny vibrations as you apply. It'll be sold exclusively at Saks until later in the year.

What's the point? Supposedly the formula used dries instantly (so my long-time habit of sneezing immediately after applying will no longer leave me looking like a hysterical prom queen? Sweet.)

Lancome is also planning to release a similar product, called Ôscillation, that will allow you to get a super-even application.
Can you imagine trying to explain the buzzing sound in your purse by saying "it's my mascara?"

I'll follow with a review once I get my hands on these two and let you know if it really makes a difference. If I poke my eye out in the process, expect more typos than usual.


A Dab Will Do Ya

Wiping a cool cotton ball soaked in skin-refreshing potion across a greasy or sunburnt face is one of the small pleasures of summer for me. These are the two new ones that I can't live without:

Dr. Andrew Weil for Origins Plantidote Mega-Mushroom Treatment Lotion
- My fave for before bed, after a day in the sun and anytime my face is feeling a bit parched. It's super-soothing thanks to a myriad of plant ingredients and has a light earthy scent that reminds me of the natural oils I wore back in my high school hippie days.
The 6.7 oz. size costs $30 and will last you forever.

Kiss My Face Obsessively Organic Balancing Act Toner - Totally blasts the excess oil on those hot, humid, unbearable days without drying you out. Contains 78% organic ingredients and has a light citrusy scent. Even better, it comes in a spray bottle so you can quickly spritz a cotton ball whenever you're feeling greasy, no cap to unscrew. I use it several times a day, especially when it's steamy outside.
5.3 oz. will cost you $13.99.

Rolling Stone Does Macy's

Rolling Stone, the most famous and most craptastic music rag on the market (I'm pretty sure Peter Travers will give anyone "4-stars!" in exchange for a piece of gum) must be desperate for cash.
Soon you'll be able to buy their most famous covers in t-shirt form at Macy's for $36.

If you think that's pricy for a tee, know that you do get a free subscription when you buy. It's really a 2-for-1 bargain - you get to look like a tool for wearing an ugly shirt and look like a tool for reading Rolling Stone.


Macy's-Sized F21 Stores?

Looks like Forever 21's growth will continue - they say 4 years from now they plan to be a mall anchor store the size of a Nordstrom.
In addition to their latest accessories and gifts division For Love 21 (which sells similar knick-knack stuff to what Urban Outfitters sells), they have a men's division, a "couture" division (TwelveByTwelve), and the Free People-esque Heritage 1981 division.
If they continue and start selling housewares, books and other brands (they're selling Havianas flip-flops even now) it doesn't sound that unrealistic for them to go monster-sized in a few years.


Boobs McGee Starts Selling Bras

Next spring the Jessica Simpson brand is expanding beyond shoes (great designs - though they run big by about 1/2 size), apparel and accessories and launching a line of bras and panties.
Not a bad move for a girl known for her boobs!
Her brand is expected to top $300 million in sales this year.
Meanwhile Nick Lachey is... doing... something? Bwwaahaha.


Target's Gettin' Sephora on Ya

Target recently forged some impressive partnerships for their cosmetics department, and we'll see the results - complete with testers! - at the end of August.

The Napoleon Perdis and Pixi brands, currently sold at Sephora, and Jemma Kidd, who sells her high-end wares at Bergdorf Goodman, will each be producing exclusive lines for the mega-retailer that will sell for around the same price as items in their Sonia Kaishuk line (about $12-$39.)

Does anyone buy the Sonia makeup? I never have. I'll definitely be interested to try out these new collections, since they will actually have testers available.

P.S. Apparently Target now sells Origins, Clarins, Bare Escentuals and Kiehl's products too, though the brands have no exclusive deal with the chain.

Bumble and Bumble's Creme de Coco Masque

The packaging on Bumble and Bumble's new Creme de Coco Masque insists that "words can't describe" the amazing state it will leave your hair in, but allow me to give it a shot...

What: Of course, Creme de Coco sounds like a yummy drink you might order poolside on a posh vacation. The product smells like it too - thanks to all kinds of natural oils and extracts (coconut, mango and shea butter to name a few.) Seriously, if my IQ were like 6 points lower I might try to eat it.

How to: After shampooing, coat clean hair with the mask and leave on for a few minutes ( they suggest 7, but there's no magic number. If your hair is ragged and rugged, leave it on as long as you can!) I'd also suggest twisting it up in a clip if you have long hair, because all those nice oils that soften your locks might wreak havoc on someone prone to back breakouts.
To intensify the treatment, heat the hair in the sun or with a blow dryer applied to a shower cap.

Verdict: Super soft, shiny, tangle-free hair, as promised! At $24 for 5oz., this is a great way to treat yourself (and your hair) once a week or so, most especially if you're exposing it to sun, wind, chlorine and all those magical byproducts of summer fun. Speaking of, this is definitely going in my suitcase when I head to Miami Beach next month.


Knock It Off: Designer Bags

Clutch, Shop Suey, $38

Brown tote, $65 and blue tote, $29.99, BagHaus

I'm a big fan of rocking styles I can't afford via knock-off pieces. Trends just change far too often to blow your load on the big ticket, unless you're Madonna, in which case OMG MADONNA IS READING MY BLOG?!!
When it comes to bags, there are a few sites that stay right on the heels of the fabulous designs with both man-made and genuine leather imitations, while keeping the price point decidedly working-girl. Here are my two favorites:
*Shop Suey

For Love 21 Launches

Forever 21 launched their new line "For Love 21" today, which offers accessories, jewelry, makeup bags, gifts and notebooks. All items carry the same small pricetags the brand is known for.
So far there isn't much, but these are a few great beaded necklaces fit for a beach vacation:


Yves Saint Laurent Dies

French fashion icon Yves Saint Laurent died Sunday night of brain cancer at the age of 71.
He retired in 2002, so the brand of course lives on, but if you want to see how ridiculously talented he was when he was still working, check out some of his vintage designs. He headed up the design department for Dior back in the late 50's- early 60's, and then moved on to his own label in 1962.
One of his most famous creations was the 60's shift dress inspired by Mondrian's paintings: