Tag Archives: lebanon

Ivy Reviews: Bassam Fattouh Cosmetics Nostalgie D’Orient

Ivy says beauty blogger lebanon Review

Before I tell you about the wonderful message behind Bassam Fattouh Cosmetics limited Nostaligie d’Orient  I think I I speak for a lot of women when I say we appreciate makeup that gets us, the kind of easy-to-carry sets that can be thrown into a makeup bag and pulled out for quick pick-me-ups throughout the day. So when I heard that Bassam Fattouh Cosmetics was coming out with  this three-piece pencil set that included a black kohl, red lipstick and concealer all in one, I knew I had to give it a try.

Ivy says Nostalgie D'orient

With Nostalgie d’Orient, Bassam Fattouh wanted to depict the beautiful side of Lebanon, the idea that despite all the issues this country faces which dominate international headlines, it also imports beauty around the world, something we tend to forget… So this collection is his way of paying homage and celebrating both the past and the present by combining the three landmarks we are so proud of; our Baher (sea), Jabal (Mountain) and the capital Beirut, in a vintage pop art package designed by renowned graphic designer Rana Salam.

The Set

Nostalgie D'orient by bassam fattouh review

Beirut: My favorite thing about this Lipstick is that it’s one of the few times you get to wear a bold color without requiring a lip liner, because it basically combines the super creaminess of a lipstick with the precision of lip liner, just keep it sharpened. The color is a signature fiery red one which never fails to impress and although it is very matte it’s quite lively upon application.

Jabal: This one’s a bold carbon black eyeliner, with a very VERY highly pigmented formula. I recommend you use it for tracing and creating kohled eyes or a bold oriental cat eye more than blending for a smokey eye look. The color release is excellent and it will last and last without smudging or streaking, It’s uber matte too.

Baher: I confess, this is my first experience with a pencil concealer, and lately I’ve been quite frustrated with formulas that fade with blending, but the yellow-based formula on this one is thick and heavy enough to stay. It’s not as blendable as you would think but I don’t mind because it’s perfect for highlighting and contouring. My only suggestion is to apply lightly because a little really goes a long way.

Nostalgie Dorient bassam fattouh color swatches

Et Voila, a full makeup look using these three pencils.

Ivy says review Bassam Fattouh Cosmetics Nostaligie D'orient

If you’re fan of makeup and a fan of Lebanon then this is one limited edition set you don’t want to miss out on. You can order Nostalgie d’Orient online here

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10 Dating Mistakes All Men and Women Are Making

BE ALONE

1. Over-Sharing. As tempting as it is to come undone, and give a tell all about how your last boyfriend/girlfriend cheated and left you and how you lost your faith in dating etc… the first few dates are not for pouring your heart out or confusing an interested looking date with a therapist.  Please keep it light, fun and semi-sober. In other words if you want a second date keep your shit together, at all times.

no kiss

2.  Acting Uninterested– yes it’s important to stay on your game but that doesn’t mean that you should pretend to ignore your date, especially if you are into him/her. Hard to get means not putting out, not revealing all your cards too soon and not coming off as lonely and desperate, but by no means does it mean acting nonchalantly or  plain rude. That’s just a turn off- no really- it is, unless you’re into low confidence.

money money

3. Setting the Standards too High- part of the wooing process involves its fair share of seduction techniques; a pick-up (no matter how far she lives), a high-end dinner, perhaps even a bottle of something extra special, in other words, showing off. But keep in mind, first impressions are lasting and that sort of treatment will become expected throughout the relationship. So if it’s out of your league  and you plan on eating at the neighbor hood snack  for the rest of your relationship (and there is no shame there), keep it simple and keep it real. No need to over-impress only to over-mislead.

mwa

4. Be friendly but don’t flirt with others– yes of course everyone wants to date the popular guy/girl but don’t start acting like you’re running for a congeniality contest especially with the opposite sex. It’s important to show interest and respect for your date, it says a lot about your character.

pshhh

5. Talking smack about serious relationships and marriage– unless you’re a serial dater we all know that the whole point of dating revolves around finding that special someone in your life. So, if you’re going to sit there all night and trash the sanctity of marriage or relationships, then don’t throw a fit when your date asks you to take it slow 6 months down the line when you’re secretly picking out rings. Be clear about your goals and expectations.

spencer

6. But don’t talk marriage too soon either– even if you’re eager to walk down the aisle. Some people think that if they just go ahead and mention the word marriage from the get-go, they’ll be saving themselves time and future heartache. Announcing you’re only marriage material is desperate, not to mention you’re selling yourself short, why give your date the upper hand like that? Maybe your date isn’t YOUR idea of marriage material… so why put yourself out there in that way? Think about it…

7. Be Honest-  if you had a good time, mention it, not toooo eagerly- but show  your appreciation. And if you didn’t, then don’t say “thanks I had fun” many times either and then complain about him/her harassing you later.

what

8. Obsessing and Over-thinking things- even if you do these on your own, they will eventually take a toll on your morale and believe it or not your date will sense them in your post-date phone calls/ whatsapps. Be cool, take it easy no matter how much you like him or her, don’t make life revolve around when and if you will see him/her again.

meet the parents

9. Meet No Parents– I’ve always been wary about those who are eager to introduce us to their parents from the second date. Yes, family people are a plus, but it also shows that everyone gets to meet mom and dad, not necessarily someone special. It’s not that flattering and too soon too fast is not a good sign at all.

stay beside you

10. You might just be the one” really? You deduced that from the two dinners already? I’m not trying to be a pessimist here but think about all the false hopes that statement carries. Men tend to say that to women to get them to put their guards down and well I think we know what happens next. Even if it were true, don’t fall for it and more importantly don’t make any concessions for it.

Read More:

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Summer Safari- A Look from Forever 21

Ivy says city centre Forever 21

I absolutely love the endless choices of accessories, hats and shoes that you can pair with outfits at Forever 21 located exclusively at City Centre Beirut. The convenience of completing an entire outfit from head-to-toe in one stop is also something you will come to appreciate when pressed on time.

I loved the boho-chic feel of my first Black and Teal look but for my second look with Forever 21, I chose this short denim dress which I thought would make the perfect addition to my wardrobe this summer, since it’s both versatile, light and can be dressed in so many different ways.

ivy says forever 21 day look

I styled it a little differently, with a pair of closed black mules which I remember rocking back in the 90s (they’re back big time) and a small-sized pretty powder pink backpack and completed the look with this Indiana Jones style Fedora I loved so much I also picked up in black. I like how the entire outfit put together looked safari-themed and fun. What do you think?

Forever 21 styled by ivy saysIvy says Forever 21

The Top 5 Perfumes This Season

Ivy's Top perfumes

1. Black Opium by YSL

Black Opium YSL review

Derived from its 1977 classic Opium, trust me when I say Black Opium smells just as good as it looks. It has notes of coffee ,electric pink pepper, orange blossom, jasmine, vanilla, patchouli and cedar and is one of those scents that lingers on even after you’ve left the room. It now one of my signature scents and favorite fragrances to date from YSL.

2. Versace Eros Pour Femme Fragrance

Versace eros pour femme

I was immediately drawn to the feminine accents of Jasmine, peonies, pomegranate and sandalwood of Versace Eros, the newly launched fragrance by Versace. The bottle also makes the perfect addition to my makeup table, with the design house’s classic motif on the edges and the Versace Medusa right in the center. This definitely smells and looks like a classic on my counter.

3. Fatale Agent Provocateur

Fatale by Agent Provocateur

It’s no secret that like everything from Agent Provocateur, Fatale is very seductive. It’s also smells super sweet, with bold top notes of spicy Pink Pepper with succulent Mango and exotic Blackcurrant and chocolate. I love the combination of fruity-floral-gourmand and just the longevity of the scent. I also appreciate just how practical the compact bottle design fits rights into my purse. If you love your perfumes sugary than you need to try this one out.

4. La Nuit Trésor by Lancome

La Nuit Tresor Lancome Review

Dubbed as the black Diamond of Lancome and announced as the first gourmand aphrodisiac from the brand, La Nuit Trésor is the result of combining the heart of a black rose, with vanilla orchid and my personal favorite, Lychee praline. It also has a very distinct raspberry top note as soon as you smell it. If I would describe this smell in one word, I would say it’s romantic. The bottle is exquisitely shaped like a diamond with a pretty satin black rose and bow. If you loved Lancome’s original bestselling Trésor then you will love the modern sultry take on La Nuit Trésor.

5. My Burberry

My Burberry Perfume Review

An iconically British fragrance that is inspired by the brand’s famous cult trench coat and the smell of a London urban garden after the rain. It opens with notes of sweet peas geranium, freesia flowers rounded up with patchouli in the base, joined with Damascus and Centifolia rose, in other words, it’s very floral and feminine. I love to put this one on during the daytime, especially when I have meetings

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Ivy’s Home: Five Star Hotel Room Luxury At Home

The white company ivy says style home

Like most people who love luxury hotels, I’ve come to appreciate the linens, lotions, towels and most of all bathrobes that come in the rooms. So I thought to myself why not take things up a notch at home and include those five-star touches in our very own bedroom and bathroom, and so I went to the obvious choice, The White Company, which opened its first and only branch in Lebanon at City Centre Beirut on Level 2. I love the stylish simplicity of this British store, which smells like a fresh sea breeze and looks crisp and clean, a place where it’s summer all year long.

Ivy Says Home

I wanted to take that smell home with me and picked out the White Geranium Scent Diffuser, a refreshingly light floral scent – with notes of lavender and eucalyptus, followed by aromatic geranium laced with rose and fresh thyme. I also bought the White Geranium Candle another relaxing and calming scent and completed the set with the Hand & Body Balm from the same series.

Geranuim set The white company reviewThe white company city centre beirut

I spoiled my husband and I with one of The White Company’s signature items, a short Hydrocotton Robe for me and the long Hydrocotton robe for him. Now let me tell you, these are one of the fluffiest and softest quality bathrobes you will find, even after washing over and over again, they make you want to nestle inside. They’re surprisingly quite lightweight, so I like to wear mine around the house over my PJs before I start my day.

The White Company Hydro cottonHome decor lebanon ivy says

I made sure our feet too get to indulge in the same experience as we stepped out of the bath, so I complemented the set with the lIe de Ré bath mat, like our bathrobes, they too are made of Hydrocotton, this amazingly thick, reversible, fluffy mat that makes you feel like you landed on a pillow, and most importantly is super fast dry.

Bath Mat The White Company

And finally, no trip to The White Company would be complete without some items from the Seychelles series, with warm notes of exotic coconut, vanilla and almond. I chose the Body Lotion and Bath and Shower Gel which really made us feel like we were on holiday at some fancy beach resort.

Seychelles  lotion the white company city centre beirut

These simple items really helped give our bed and bathroom that hotel room feel we crave, especially after a long stressful day or during a relaxing weekend at the beach. I also think they make the perfect gifts for friends who too appreciate the finer (and uber-soft) things in life.

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How To Prevent Stretch Marks

Ivy Says Mustela Review

I think I speak for a lot of women when I say there are not many things that plant fear in our hearts, but one of them is stretch marks because those little zigzagish horrors strike when you least expect them to, at times even overnight. I never gave them much thought, until I got pregnant, then the warnings began…

Watch Out”

Moisturize!”

Use Bio Oil

Cocoa butter is your best friend.”

They’re genetic!

Everyone was chiming in and there I was lathering myself to the point where I was looking like a baby seal.

Then one day, I received an invitation for a presentation about Mustela, a skin care line designed to taking care of mothers-to-be and their babies. I was intrigued, this was all very new to me.

Mustela Full stretch mark collection pregnancy

It was definitely an eye opening hour, I learned that although stretch marks during pregnancy are indeed the result of your body growing too big and fast for your skin to stretch along with it, they were also brought on by a surge of hormones that relax collagen in skin. And although stretch marks may not be prevented completely, they can be warded off with the proper skin care routine.

That’s where Mustela comes in with its complete revolutionary range of products for pre-and post pregnancy. The best part they’re hypoallergenic and dermatologically assessed for safety for mom and baby during pre-natal and post-partum pregnancy use , the first concern that pops into a pregnant woman’s mind, trust me.

Mustela Double Action review strech marks

I was presented with a set of skin care products, for pre and post pregnancy. The two I have been using for the past 2 months are the Mustela Stretch Marks Double Action which I apply both during the day and in the evening after a hot shower and it smells REALLY good and the Stretch Marks Care Oil made with only natural origins that I massage on to my skin before bed. It’s grease-free (surprisingly) so you don’t have to worry about staining your PJs or linens. I’m currently 30 weeks along and I’m very relieved to say, not a stretch mark in sight just yet (fingers crossed.) So if you’re expecting or plan on it I suggest you keep these two by your bedside at the soonest.

Mustela Stretch Mark oil review

I also plan to continue trying out this line even after I have my baby, the first is the Body Restructuring Gel, to firm up any saggy skin and decrease puffiness, and also the Stretch Marks Intensive Action Cream, to reduce the color and size of any stretch marks that may appear. It really feels good to know that I have those two-on stand by for later.

You can find the Mustela range in Lebanon at most pharmacies.

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Ivy Reviews: La Crêperie Restaurant in Jounieh

La Crêperie  Photo-by-Marco-Pinarelli

When I first heard La Crêperie closed to be majorly renovated, I have to admit I was a little sad and worried, though I have to also admit it needed it badly. I had so many fond memories at this historic spot that dates all the way back to the 19th century and a long-standing iconic restaurant which had first opened its doors in 1968. Describing this landmark as perched would be an understatement, it literally hangs off a cliff, and boasts one THE best views in the country, overlooking the entire bay of Jounieh and the Mediterranean Sea.

Every inch of the place has been completely restored and managed by Sky Management (the same folks that brought us SKYBAR and O1NE House of Entertainment) and after much anticipation it opened its doors earlier this Spring.

La Crêperie  review 1

The venue is a design marvel, with each corner looking like it had taken a page out of Architectural Digest, a savvy combination of French Provence decor with traditional Lebanese Ottoman-style heritage boasting magnificently high ceilings and stellar marble columns. But it’s the interior decor which left the biggest impression on me, since I’m absolutely obsessed with the combination of country-chic furniture, soothing pastels and crystal chandeliers.

La Crêperie 2]

Most people prefer to dine on the picturesque outdoor terrace or in Les Jardins ( La Crêperie botanical backyard), but my personal favorite place is a cozy table inside. I got to try out many items on the assorted international/Mediterranean menu on a recent lunch with friends. And here are some of my recommendations worth trying.

La Crêperie  Garden

As the name suggests, La Crêperie; you can choose from 13 savory crêpes and a total of 18 sweet ones. We opted for the Jambon, Fromage et Beurre crêpe, a generously stuffed one with ham, cheese and butter which I loved, but I have to say, it’s enough to stuff you, so don’t get greedy.

La Crêperie  Crepe Jambon fromage Beurre

For starters, we also had the flavorful Quinoa Salad, with avocados, mangos, cucumbers, raisons and corn in a refreshing lemon and oil dressing topped with cilantro. I’ve never had this combination of ingredients with Quinoa before and I have to say it was a lovely new perspective.

La Crêperie Quinoa salade

The Scottish Salmon dish was made of four unfussy wrapped roles of smoked salmon, simple and straight to the point.

La Crêperie scottish salmon

The Bresaola au Parmesan had a crisp topping of mesclun green leaves tossed in an oil and lemon that gave each mouthful a fresh vibe. The lentil salad had a very Mediterranean feel to it with cherry tomatoes, chives and parsley in a vinaigrette sauce.

La Crêperie bresaolaLa Crêperie  Lentille salade

And finally, another favorite of mine, the Ravioli aux cèpes, a delectable mixture of fresh mushrooms encased in a ravioli, cooked to perfection with a hearty creamy/buttery sauce. I would without a doubt have this on my own next time as a main dish, sharing it with not easy.

La Crêperie  Ravioli

For mains, we shared three entrees, the Loup de Mer, a significantly-sized grilled white fish, with a side of steamed greens, it was a little simple for my liking as I would prefer my fish usually more marinated with flavors, however it was grilled just right, not overdone and still moist.

La Crêperie  grilled fish

The house burger, was the kind you would get at an authentic French Bistro, nothing too complicated and my personal favorite the colossal Escalope de Veau Panée, breaded white veal with a side of penne pasta in a tomato sauce.

La Crêperie Burger MaisonLa Crêperie  Veau panneLa Crêperie menu review jounieh

And finally my favorite part of any meal, dessert, with the king of all cheesecakes, the berry cheesecake no exaggeration,may be one of the best I’ve had in Lebanon so far, wholesome and utterly delightful with each bite. La Crêperie  cheesecakeFor the chocolate aficionados I also recommend the Tarte au Chocolate, made with a firm dark chocolate interior in a perfect little tart shell. And some of the house sorbet to beat the heat.

La Crêperie Tarte au chocolateLa Crêperie dessertLa Crêperie  dessert

Verdict: Rarely is the new able to encompass the original spirit of institutions like this one, but the new La Crêperie takes it a step further, it’s not only managed to restore this Lebanese landmark back its original glory, it has thrust it into a new era of golden years ahead.

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