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Face To Face Day Spa

Today I had a facial at Face to Face Day Spa in Bend Oregon. I also added on a wild lime scalp treatment. Unfortunately I was not happy. This is the third time I am not happy with a facial. The time before today was at a place in Las Vegas in 2015 called Aminah's Organic Skin Spa, I complained nicely to the owner (she is gorgeous by the way) and got a full refund. She quickly realized that I knew what I was talking about and not just rambling nonsense. And the first time was at some salon in Huntington Beach CA a long time ago. The poorly trained esthetician used an extraction tool and I had angry red marks all over my face, I am talking about at least 20 red indentations for a week after the facial. It should not be like that and the owner gave me a complimentary facial. Then of course I've had many good and great face and body treatments but I have to say, the best estheticians have been Europeans. I used to go to an older Hungarian lady in Las Vegas called Beba and she still does facials, check out Faces By Beba - she is good. She used to be very good but I think she has lost some of her magic but she still does a good job. I do recommend her.
Now back to today's disappointing facial experience....



I could tell from the initial approach by the esthetician today that she was kind of "meh" or uninspired and it definitely showed in her performance. Her cleansing and massage techniques were poor. She did not pay attention to details.
She positioned the face steam machine on one side of my face, the steam should engulf your whole face to open up your pores so the products can really penetrate your skin. Well, only my right check and ear area got steam, not the middle of my face and the whole left side of my face. That is a bad mistake.
She sprayed some product from a bottle too far away from my face, barely any product made contact with my face, so why even bother spraying then?
She either went to a low standard school, I asked and the answer actually confirmed it and/or she just doesn't have that special touch. Not everybody has THAT touch. The facial was supposed to last one hour and then I also added on the scalp treatment. Thinking when you add on a treatment to a facial that is supposed to last one hour then your whole treatment should be more than one hour. Right? No, not today. 60 minutes later it was over.
When I politely asked the lady at the front desk about it she got defensive and wondered if I did not want to pay for the services? It is not that I don't want to pay but when you go to a place that describes themselves as quality and charges around $100 for a one hour facial you should also get quality. The service I got today I feel would had been OK if I would had received it from a student still not done with their esthetician education and was still practicing in school.
Not somebody that graduated from school with a diploma and working at a salon or spa. Of course I paid, $98.50 cash, I got 10% off (I did not ask for the discount).
I left the esthetician $15 in tip although she didn't really deserve it but I just don't think she knows any better. She is not, in my opinion, qualified to work as an esthetician. I can do a better job and I did not go to esthetician school - maybe I should! I will not return to this place. I have two other places I want to try in Oregon. One is in Lake Oswego outside Portland and that spa is owned and operated by a Russian lady and she comes highly recommended and then there is another place here in Bend and that esthetician travels between Bend and Lake Oswego. I have a feeling that the Russian will do an excellent job.



Jinsei Spa

The other day I had a pedicure at Jinsei Spa located in Bend Oregon. I picked the one hour Jinsei Pedicure. But first I prepped my feet for the pedi with a refreshing soak at home using Dr. Teal's foot soak.



Then I headed for Jinsei spa, so looking forward to my pedicure. I LOVE the spa, who doesn't?



The lady that did my pedicure was from Japan and I greeted her in Japanese.
My brother speaks fluent Japanese so my pronunciation is on point. She was super nice and we chatted away. Except when she started rubbing my feet, then I leaned back and closed my eyes and enjoyed every second. Besides loving spa visits, I love getting my feet rubbed. Any kind of massage actually I like.





Since I am a spa connoisseur I am somewhat hard to please, I know what I like and I pay attention to details. The pedicure gets 4 out of 5 Tati approval points, which is good. What needs improvement are two things.....the salt scrub needs to last longer. A few casual rubs won't do it, at least two, three minutes on each foot with a generous slather of salt scrub, work the scrub into the feet and calves. And the aloe mask needs to be left on for at least 7 minutes or so to really do what it is supposed to do. While the hot towels are left on and during that the feet should get acupressure. That is what the pedi needed but lacked therefore the 4 Tati approval points instead of 5. But I will probably visit Jinsei spa again for another pedicure.
And finally.....freshly painted toes. Pink. Of course.



Hair Stuff

I got some new hair stuff. First let's talk about these black currant oil vitamins. I am so bad at taking vitamins, I have every intention of taking a daily vitamin or two and start every morning off gulping down a large glass of warm water with fresh squeezed organic lemon added to it and then of course drink at least one liter of water throughout the day......but those are just thoughts that swirl around in my head. I do manage to swallow a few of these vitamins weekly (like two or three).
So supposedly the black currant oil is good for your hair, it helps against hair loss.
I still think that I lose too much hair. I don't know if the vitamins have made any difference or not, I should probably take a capsule a day for at least three months to see any results.



And a new shampoo and some sort of conditioner/masque Awapuhi Wild Ginger by Paul Mitchell. I like Paul Mitchell products because they are not tested on animals. I have not tried these two products yet but I read some nice reviews about them. What I really want is to try the Olaplex treatment, preferably at home. But I think I should probably go to a salon and have it done by a professional the first time.
Speaking of hair treatments, the most luxurious hair treatment I gave ever received was at a place called George Michael of Beverly Hills. They offer an in salon hair conditioning treatment called the "George Michael professional treatment" and it really is amazing. I should do that again!

No Good Facial

I had a facial this past Sunday. I had looked forward to it and decided to book an 80 minute facial at a place I had not been to before but I read some, what seemed, very promising reports about the place. They use Eminence products, I have tried and liked several Eminence products, they use a special massage technique on the face and I love getting a skilled face massage. The place I went to is called Aminah's. It's located here in Vegas.



I specifically told the receptionist (or whomever I spoke to when I did the booking) to NOT give me a beginner aesthetician since I KNOW what a good facial consists of and feels like.
I do not like when people who don't know what they are doing are picking on my face as in giving me a facial, ripping out my hair as in giving my hair a trim, or fumbling with my feet as in giving me a pedi . I've had so many bad experiences at salons and spas, even the ones that tote themselves as being high end and luxurious that I now wax my own legs and I rarely get pedis when I can do those at home. Why should I spend money on a half assed service when I can do it better myself and for free? So the facial......well, you probably guessed it, it was a no good facial. Decent at best. Not awful. Had I never had a facial before I would had probably thought it was good. The aesthetician needs more training or perhaps she doesn't have that magic touch. I believe that the field in aesthetics should be a true calling, something that you really want to do but I think that here in the US a lot of women and straight out of high school girls enroll in and graduate from "beauty" school just so they can have some sort of a job. Like because they don't know what else to do and beauty school sounds right. Plus anybody can enroll as long as you can pay for the classes. Nothing wrong with that as long as that really is your passion but some of them that I have encountered should not be getting paid for their professional "services". I can do better than some of them and I did not take hundreds of hours of classes.
Well, I did write the lady in charge, Aminah herself and told her what I thought about the facial. She offered me a free facial with her, so I can get a "true Hungarian experience". That is very nice and the right thing to do but she can't give me the facial until January and I don't know where I will be then. So by all means......if you are looking for an OK to good place in Vegas for a facial, try Aminah's. Ask for Aminah herself to get a quality facial or request an experienced aesthetician. The spa was clean, the room and my bed very nice and comfortable, the face massage was very good but my opinion is that the girl that performed the facial needs to hone her skills.
My post facial and post very mentally draining weekend at work face. Up close so you can really see every pore!



Better news, today I found a $10 bill when walking with Chhaya in the park. That is my latte and pastry fund for tomorrow!



And I HAVE to see this film/documentary, Something Better To Come by Hannah Polak! Look it up and spend a few minutes watcing the preview! This is my movie tip to you.




Facial & Massage

I drove to Anchorage yesterday to fix my phone, while I was there I had a facial. Wonderful as usual. This is how cute I looked in my hydrating mask from Korea.



I love every minute on that table, even through the manual and sometimes a bit painful extractions.



Anastasiya that does my facials is the best. Her face massage technique is amazing, she has THE touch. I have worried a bit about where I will be able to find a good esthetician when/if I move from Alaska. Finding a good one is not easy, there are many out there but I think at least half of them have no clue of what they are doing and I don't want them to touch my face. Well, it turns out Anastasiya has the perfect new esthetician for me. Another Russian lady created her own skin care line that Anastasiya actually uses. She lives a bit outside Portland. I love Portland!
So now I have somebody that I can go to for facials outside of Alaska. I'm relieved. I go for facials maybe twice a year, I would go at least three or four times a year, or once a month even if I lived in the same city or at least close by my esthetician. I LOVE facials and massages.
So today I actually had a massage here is Soldotna. A Thai massage, I never had one of those before and I loved it! I got my feet and calves massages (I love that) and the rest of me kneaded, bent, stretched and told that I'm "tall, small, perfect and flexible". :-D
The compliments worked because I booked another session.







Face Mask

I totally forgot about this face mask by Caudalie when I was talking about my new products a few days ago. I got it in Vegas and I have used it a few times. I like it and it smells wonderful, very herby. I might use it again tonight, if I stay home. First I am going to take a bath, then put on this mask and follow with a honey mask. That will be nice for my skin. Cleansing and moisturizing.
Now what about Caudalie, a skincare line that I have used for years (I use one of their face sprays, the Beauty Elixir) and animal testing? I always thought that Caudalie did not test on animals, it's a bit more complicated than that since they sell their products in China. This is what I gathered about Caudalie and L'Occitane, another skin care line that I use, "China has laws that state that beauty products must undergo animal testing before human use. So while L'Occitane and Caudalie both released statements to The Daily Mail saying that none of their products are ever tested on animals, the bottom line is that if you sell to China, the Chinese government will require those products to undergo animal testing. So companies who sell to China, even if their products are completely cruelty-free up until that point, then become complicit in supporting the continued use of animal testing. Hence the loss of the Leaping Bunny."



I decided to check back on Caudalie before I get any more of their products to see if they have changed anything about their policies on animals testing and China. There are companies that cancelled plans to enter the Chinese market due to the animal testing policies there, one example is Urban Decay. Kudos to Urban Decay!









Personal Choices

A few months ago I started thinking more and more about the personal choices I make in my life and how that affects the environment and the animals. I already eat basically no meat, so far 2015 has been completely meat free although I am NOT a vegan but I do admire vegans for their lifestyle. I encourage everybody to eat less meat, read into what eating less meat would mean for you and the environment and of course the animals. ❤
Now I do use products to clean myself, to beautify myself and to clean my home. I decided to try to make better choices. Did I succeed? Well, here follows a personal inventory of my latest products. Here is where I FAILED (let's start with the bad first). I recently got a face cream from MAC in Vegas that I had seen advertised in a magazine. I decided to try it and I use it before work as a face moisturizer. It's called Mineralize Timecheck Lotion. I liked it and went into the MAC store in Anchorage and stocked up on another bottle since there is no MAC store in Kenai. While in Vegas I also exchanged some empty MAC containers for a new eyeshadow. I believe it's 6 empty containers (of MAC products) that you need to bring in to receive a new eye shadow or lip gloss for free but I might be wrong, so don't quote me on that. Anyhow, I picked out a new eyeshadow called Greensmoke. MAC from what I understand tests on animals. They used to be cruelty free (according to some reports that I read) but since they outsourced to China where products have to be tested on animals they are no longer cruelty free. So FAIL on my part.



I also got some new lip glosses. I ran out of my FAVE by NARS called Coeur Sucre and needed that one. Then I saw a gloss called Angelika and got that one too. I found out that NARS does not test on animals. But then I also got some other glosses by Make Up Forever and Sephora's own brand Sephora and those are not cruelty free. From now on I will stick to NARS.



Now here to some better choices. I got these shampoos and conditioners by Paul Mitchell. Not tested on animals. In fact Paul Mitchell is one of the first hair care companies to publicly oppose animal testing. I can say that The Detangler worked really well on my hair.



I got these really nice and yummy smelling lotions by Pacifica. Not tested on animals.
Good stuff!



And here are some products I've had for a while that I want to tell you about.
Eminence Organic Skin Care. I really like Eminence and my mission is to find some great day and night moisturizers by them to start using daily. Eminence products smell AMAZING and edible. The Honedew lotion is wonderful and I really like the Monoi Age Corrective Exfoliating Cleanser. It has small scrubbing beads (finely ground olive seeds actually) in it and I leave it on my face for a while before washing it off. Love it!



I know I have room for improvement and I am working on becoming a better person for this planet. That is my mission.




Last Leg

So as you know.....in case you have been reading my ramblings for a while, I use fake lashes for work and other occasions too, like if I'm going to a party or something but never during the day (I don't bother with any make up during the day, the simpler the better).
A few months ago I tried teaching a girl at work how to apply them. It usually takes a few times before you get a hang of it, I can get them on in about two minutes, that's one minute each eye. Then they stay glued on all night and I take them off before I go to bed. I've been asked how long they last. I reuse mine many times before I discard of them. These that I put on last night are on their last leg though. I have probably used them 15-20 times. If you are careful with the lashes they can be reused. And why go and buy new when you can reuse, right? At least that's my philosophy. So I switch between a few different styles. I get the brand called Ardell which you can find at any Sally beauty Supply, at Smith's or Vons, most large supermarket chains carry Ardell. In Alaska I get them at the local Fred Meyer. I switch off between the "Demi Whispies" or 105 or 117. Always in black.



The other week I found these pretty dark blue ones. I'm not sure where I would wear them so you could actually notice the blue hue but probably a party/rave although those have been few and far in between lately. I need to go out soon or I'm going to turn into a boring fogbone!



Waxing Time

Well I finally decided it was waxing time for my legs. The hair on my legs reached new lengths, I was quite impressed with my Sasquatch style.
I haven't been working and therefore not been occupied with shaving my legs. I usually (when I work) shave up to the knee and then wax my upper legs when the hair gets long enough. Usually every five or six weeks or so.....sometimes longer depending on how motivated I am. My upper leg/thigh hair is kind of fine. When I don't work for a while I let my lower leg hair grow out so I can wax it. That hair is darker and coarser, probably from all the shaving. I like the Sally Hansen wax, it works and it's not that expensive, about $11. I rarely go to a salon for a wax because I have had bad waxes where you basically pay a minimum of $40 for somebody to do a shitty job when I can spend $11 and get it done right. So now all of you know that I waxed my legs and everything that there is to know about that. Very important news, I know! If you need a good waxer, I can assist you. But I won't do any Brazilian waxes. So don't even ask. ;-)



I'm a hairy beast! I was impressed myself.....it took 1 1/2 jars of the Sally Hansen wax to rid myself of my leg hair. When I wax the thighs only about half a jar is suffucient. Yeay....I'm smooth and hair free now (on my legs that is....he he).





Facial Massage

I am a massage lover and a spa lover. In my dream existence I would have one long luxurious and nourishing facial/week, two massages/week and one foot reflexology session/week.
I believe you can keep your skin beautiful by getting regular and quality (of course) facials and your body healthy by getting massages. A while back I wrote about pedicures, that there are places that actually deliver an expert pedicure.....a meticulous one. Not the sloppy "cutting a bit of cuticle, rubbing some lotion on your calves and feet for a couple of minutes and slapping on two layers of polish" places and then you are done and out the door. I have, after some searching found one lady that's OK here in this village....I said OK, not great.
Another thing I am very particular about are my facials. I've had some BAD ones and then I found Anastassia in Anchorage (after somebody recommended her to me). Anastassia is a Russian lady, from my personal experiences Russians and Hungarians are the best schooled in the art of aesthetics.....because it is an ART. And not everybody has the talent, even after they finish whatever school they paid for to get some diploma. That's why I've had so many bad facials, because whoever carried them out sucked at it, despite all the hours spent in school. Anastassia gives an AMAZING facial massage (although she is lazy sometimes and skips it), I mean it's amazing. She has the touch and talent, I would visit her more often if I could (it's too far). I recently came across some articles about facial massages in a magazine. They list some places world wide that are known for their facial massages, of course they mention a spa in Budapest, Los Angeles (I might have to go there next time I visit), New York and Tokyo. I mean, how often when you get a facial does the esthetician give you a long and thorough facial massage? Not often. I've had that done two places, at Anastassia's and Aida Thibiant in Los Angeles and I've had facials all over the US.
Speaking of skin care, I have been using L'Occitane cremes for years, their Immortelle day cream and night cream and I love them. But a while ago I discovered Eminence. An all organic line, originally from Hungary. So far I have only tried a body lotion, Honeydew and it's fantastic and this bamboo face masque. It smells so good and I like it. I might have to invest in some other products like a day and night cream to mix it up with the L'Occitane. And when I had the masque on my face I just had to take a selfie only to show everybody what I look like with a masque on my face!