Jan 14, 2010

Best Kept (not so) Secret: Silvertone Bar & Grille

 I rarely do restaurant/shop reviews because up until about a month ago I did not find myself dining out so often. However that has since changed and yesterday brought me into a little piece of downtown heaven at Silvertone on Bromfield in Boston.

My dining companion is well-versed on everything regarding the restaurant industry so over a deliciously light Caesar starter with homemade croutons, he regaled me with tales of Silvertone when it was a Speakeasy where many of Boston's greats sat in the very seats we perched.

The walls are neatly adorned with vintage photographs and the vibe is clearly retro in a way so many attempt but few achieve.The crowd was a mix of businesspeople on their lunch break, college students and clusters of older women gossiping over their tea. Ideally perfect for any patron.

After a light salad came a homemade chicken and vegetable soup that was perfect in the midst of my state of winter cold recovery. It was delicious, not too salty and I paired it with a grilled cheese on country white bread and side of the crispiest golden fries. I also snagged a bite of D's meatloaf that came with creamy mashed and a side of asparagus. Divine.


This is the perfect place if you crave a casual but lively atmosphere and fantastic comfort food - a necessity every now 
and then when everyone is in their frenzied New Years
resolution state of dieting. The waitstaff was
attentive and friendly and the price point
cannot be beaten.

Citysearch gives it four out of five stars as does Yelp.

Links to my previous restaurant reviews:
Cosi in Kendall Square
The Juicery

Jan 11, 2010

Mini-Makeovers: Awake From Your Winter Coma Refreshed & Revamped

I recently brought one of my friends to see my favorite makeup artist. My friend had never gotten her makeup done professionally, nor had any kind of cosmetic application instruction. After said “makeover” was finished I looked at her in awe. The new palette of colors brightened her up, enhanced her very already present natural beauty and created a look that would be easy for her to recreate daily without spending hours in front of the mirror. And her boyfriend LOVED it. I never felt happier.

This prompted me to write a short how-to on giving yourself a mini makeover. I give myself at least one monthly and now that I have a significant other, I am even more conscious about how I look. Whether you’re already quite proficient in your application of makeup or have a few homemade products you like to use for your own “spa day,” here are a few ideas you can use to enhance your own routine.

Mini Facial. Working in the spa industry, I have received countless facials both at Bella Sante as well as trying a few alternatives which only verified that yes we are the best in the industry.  Before I came under the guidance of licensed estheticians, I was using all the wrong products for my skin, St.Ives scrub? I thought it was safe? Neutrogena gel cleanser? How could it be drying me out resulting in even more oil production? Doing a mini facial at home consists of six simple steps. Cleanse, tone, exfoliate, extract, apply mask and moisturize.

Cleanser: As with every product you use, your cleanser should be one geared towards your particular skin-type. If you tend to be sensitive and dry, use something gentle, non-comodegenic and moisturizing to avoid dryness, redness and other irritation.

Toner: keep it alcohol free. I use Phytomer’s Rosee Visage, its so gentle I can use it on my eyes as well.

Exfoliant: Use either an enzyme based exfoliant (such as Phytomer’s Peeling Vegetal) that will give you a uniform exfoliation with just a thin coat and 5-7 minutes or something gritty yet gentle such as Carita’s Intense Smooth Out Micro-Peel.

Extraction: Leave this up to the professionals unless you’ve been guided in doing so. Trying this yourself will likely lead to skin damage.

Mask: If you’re oily you want a purifying and balancing mask, if you’re dry you want one that is hydrating (I use Carita’s Ideal Hydration Lagoon Bath Mask). If you want to pop on an eye mask as well go for it!

Moisturizer: End your beautification ritual with a serum and/or moisturizer tailored to your needs. Balancing, hydrating, purifying, anti-aging etc etc.

Whiten your teeth. Small step, large results. Your teeth and brows are mainly the deciding factor between you looking unkept or polished. For best effect, get your brows waxed professionally once a month and ask an esthetician how you can maintain them in between visits.

If you’re feeling a bit indulgent, treat yourself to an at home spa-kit like Decleor’s OOH La Spa collection (one I personally have tried, tested and love).

These small steps will make all the difference in your appearance. Though I could continue on for pages, if you have specific questions, as always, I am willing to reply via aristobrat_mail using the link provided on the right toolbar.


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