Cooling Cucumber

It’s hot out there! In an effort to relieve the fatigue and discomfort of the intense summer heat, you can incorporate the cooling and soothing benefits of cucumbers in many ways.

Cucumber Eye Treatment: Place fresh cucumber slices on your eyes after a long days work to reduce swelling, minimize dark circles, decrease puffiness, and rejuvenate your delicate eye area.

Cucumber Mint Spa Water: Spruce up your bland drinking water by adding fresh cucumber and mint leaves to create an enjoyable and relaxing spa water treat.

Cucumber Juice Facial Cleansing Foam: This richly foaming cleanser from 100% Pure uses cucumber juice along with other natural and organic ingredients to soothe and hydrate the skin while purifying and removing impurities, revealing a refreshed and healthy complexion.

Broadway Retreat Cooling Facial: This summertime facial includes a cooling eucalyptus hand, arm, and foot massage while fresh cucumber slices energize and rejuvenate your eye area, decreasing the appearance of dark circles and puffiness.  A gentle soothing gel mask is applied to the skin to calm, balance, and revive the complexion. Treat your skin and your spirit to this limited time facial for only $50 (originally $75).

Beat the heat at Broadway Retreat this summer! 505-246-2400

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Hot Stone Facial

Many of you have already heard or experienced the benefits of a hot stone massage, in which, warm, smooth stones are strategically placed on the body to ease tension and encourage complete relaxation.  More recently, many skincare professionals are incorporating hot stones into facial treatments.  The application of tiny hot stones on the face and decollete instantly relieves fatigue, stress, and anxiety and is ideal for individuals who consistently feel cold and have blood circulation difficulties.

Now you can experience the benefits and comfort of a hot stone facial massage at Broadway Skin & Body Retreat!  We have included this luxurious treatment as an Add On service that can be integrated into any facial.

Call me today to try this unique facial massage for yourself
and feel the benefits inside and out!
505-246-2400

Define Your Eyes

We apply eyeliner to enhance and exaggerate the color and shape of our eyes.  The great thing about eyeliner is that you have many options in creating a unique, classic, or dramatic look by experimenting with different shades of color and design.  I recently pinned an image on my Hair and Make-Up Pinterest page detailing various ways to apply eyeliner that range from subtle to over the top.  It has gotten 1,130 repins so far, so I figured it must be worth sharing.  Count the ways to define your eyes below.  🙂

Skincare for Generation Z

While a majority of my clientele are adult women ages 25 and up, I have had the pleasure of educating and treating the skincare needs of a younger market: pre-teens and teens otherwise referred to as Generation Z.  A few weeks ago, one of my regular clients brought her 13-year-old daughter in for a facial.  I loved the idea that her mother was encouraging her daughter to follow a healthy skincare regime.  I later found out that it was her daughter who requested a facial treatment and had saved her own allowance in anticipation for her professional facial.  I wish I had thought to do that when I was her age.  After all, this is a prime target market to promote healthy skin and educate a young audience on the importance of following a skincare routine and how to treat those pesky teenage skin predicaments.

During pre-teen and teenage years, one will commonly experience the first signs of breakouts, more noticeable congestion (blackheads and white heads) on the nose and in the T-zone.  Introducing Generation Z to a few helpful skincare products will not only allow them to maintain control over their skin as it goes through various changes, but it will instill an understanding of the importance preventative skincare.  Here are my top picks for the perfect products for Gen Z skin:

100% Pure Purity Facial Cleanser and Mask 
This a great cleanser for oily or acne prone skin that not only smells great, but it gentle and effective for the sensitive skin of young teens.  This detoxifying cleanser kills acne causing bacteria and prevents new breakouts from forming while seaweed and herbs continue to nourish the skin without over drying.

Boscia Pore Purifying Black Strips:
These adhesive strips unclog dirt, oil, and bacteria.  Detoxifying charcoal powder is instantly applied to the skin, designed to draw out impurities.  This is a great product for teens who notice a lot of congestion in the nose area. Boscia is an all natural product line, eliminating all harsh ingredients such as parabens, fragrance, dyes, and more.

Soap and Glory Greatest Scrub of All Facial Exfoliator:
Silicami particles and salicylic acid are an ideal combo in this super gentle skin smoothing exfoliant to eradicate excess oil and smooth away blackheads and white heads revealing a healthy, clean complexion.

Image Skincare Daily Defense Matte Moisturizer with SPF 30:
This new generation oil free day time moisturizer with SPF is great for teens.  It provides hydration without a greasy build up while protecting from harmful UVA/UVB rays.

As a skincare professional, I tell my clients that the best anti-ageing method is prevention.  Unfortunately, because we don’t see the signs of ageing until our mid thirties, we tend to be careless about protecting our skin during our youth.  Now that we are all more educated and much more aware of the effects that sun damage, free radicals, and harsh ingredients have on our skin long-term, it is important to relay that information to Generation Z and encourage them to be proactive when it comes to their skincare health.

Call me today to schedule a Teen Facial 505-246-2400

Wedding Details Revealed: Part II

Once I became engaged last spring I began my search for the perfect wedding venue.  Zach and I discussed every option from a casual backyard wedding to more modern locations like museums, art galleries, hotels, and even an elopement.  We both decided that we wanted our wedding to be big enough to include our close friends and family but small enough to remain an intimate and simplistic affair.  After months of touring potential venues, we selected Hotel Andaluz.  I had always loved this boutique hotel in downtown Albuquerque and I felt that it encompassed my personal style of modern meets vintage and the overall ambiance was very sophisticated and romantic.  Another decision we made about our wedding was to keep the transition from ceremony to reception simple and convenient for ourselves and our guests, so, we opted to have the entire event at the hotel.

The Ceremony:
Zach and I knew we wanted a ceremony that was short and sweet and specific to us and our relationship.  Since there were a lot of aspects of the wedding that were nontraditional, we decided to stick with traditional marriage vows and include a unity candle.  I liked the idea of reciting the same vows couples have made to each other for centuries.  For our unity candle I chose three beautiful crystal flower candle holders.  They were so elegant and unique and they sparkled in the light.  Next to the unity candle was my great grandmother’s bible that had been passed down to my grandmother and my mother.  It was so symbolic and special to have a piece of her there with us on our wedding day.

I am my father’s only daughter and we have always been very close.  It meant so much to me to have him walk me down the aisle on my wedding day. When we saw each other for the first time before entering the ceremony we embraced and he told me how beautiful I looked and how proud he was of me.  It was a lovely moment walking arm in arm with my father before being handed off to my husband-to-be.

Zach’s sister, Courtney, allowed us to use her three adorable children for our flower girl and ring bearers and they certainly stole the show! Courtney even made Kate’s flower girl dress!  I found this picture of a flower girl dress on Pinterest  and Courtney was able to recreate it herself.  It was exactly what I wanted my flower girl to look like.  I also loved the “Here Comes the Bride Sign” that her son, Mason held down the aisle while Kate’s twin brother, Colin, was in charge of the ring pillow.  One of my bridesmaids’ boyfriend made the sign for me.  It was perfect.  It was so touching to have all my friends and family help out in creating little pieces of the wedding.

The wedding party entered the ballroom from the outdoor balcony which made for a beautiful burst of light as the double doors opened.  We had a white lace aisle runner lined with tall vases filled with vibrant lilies.

Days leading up to the wedding, I was so worried about crying during the ceremony and losing my composure.  But I was completely calm as I locked eyes with my groom and made my way down the aisle towards him.  I tuned out everything else around me.  I can’t even remember hearing the music.  I had envisioned that moment in my head thousands of time before and I wanted to soak in every second of my stroll down the aisle. I felt totally comfortable being surrounded by my friends and family and I was so blessed to feel so much love in one room.

I chose my dear friend, Jane, to perform a reading during the ceremony.  She is such a special person who radiates with charisma and presence.  She was nine months pregnant at the wedding and I’m so thankful to her little bundle of joy, Harper, for waiting until after the wedding to make her debut. 🙂

The reading Jane recited at the wedding was “The Key to Love” by Anon

“The key to love is understanding … The ability to comprehend not only the spoken word, but those unspoken gestures, the little things that say so much by themselves.

The key to love is forgiveness …. to accept each others faults and pardon mistakes, without forgetting, but with remembering what you learn from them.

The key to love is sharing … Facing your good fortunes as well as the bad, together; both conquering problems, forever searching for ways to intensify your happiness.

The key to love is giving … without thought of return, but with the hope of just a simple smile, and by giving in but never giving up.

The key to love is respect … realising that you are two separate people, with different ideas;  that you don’t belong to each other, that you belong with each other, and share a mutual bond.

The key to love is inside us all … It takes time and patience to unlock all the ingredients that will take you to its threshold; it is the continual learning process that demands a lot of work … but the rewards are more than worth the effort … and that is the key to love.”

Once we were pronounced husband and wife, Zach and I stayed on the balcony to take family photos while our guests gathered in the beautiful hotel lobby for cocktails and hors d’ oeuvres before returning to the ballroom for a sit down dinner and reception.

Ceremony music selections:
Grooms entrance: Let it be by the Beatles (piano instrumental)
Bridal Party: Something by the Beatles (piano instrumental)
Bride’s entrance: First time ever I saw your face (piano instrumental)
Recessional: My Best Friend by Queen

Family photos:

The Van Hecke Family

The Thompson Family:

Wedding Party:

The Reception:
As guests returned to the ballroom after the cocktail hour, they selected their place card that had a vintage key attached to it.  My overall theme of the wedding was “Keys to a happy marriage” and I thought giving everyone their own vintage skeleton key was a unique way to present the place cards.

I wanted the reception to be lighthearted and fun.  Before dinner was served, the hotel staff performed a choreographed champagne pour and we started the reception off with toasts from the Best Man (Zach’s brother, Andy) and Maid of Honor (My best friend Arantha Royce).

First Dances:
My father and I danced to Somewhere Over the Rainbow/Wonderful World by Hawaiian artist “Iz.”  It was a very sweet moment and it reminded me of when my dad would dance with me when I was a little girl.

It was very sweet to watch Zach and his mother during their mother/son dance.  Zach is the youngest of four children and I know he and his mother share a special bond.  They danced to the song More by Harry Connick Jr.

Trying to decide on a song for our first dance was a little tough for Zach and I.  We didn’t have a particular song that had special meaning to us and I was somewhat opposed to choosing a tear jerker love song.  Since I was a little girl, I loved the movie French Kiss with Meg Ryan.  In one of the scenes she dances to a beautiful french version of one of my favorite songs, “Dream a Little Dream.”  I have a similar version on my iTunes playlist by French Canadian artist, Emilie-Clair Barlow.  I would play this song all the time at home and occasionally coax Zach into dancing with me in the kitchen.  It is such a lovely, elegant version of the popular song made famous by the Mamas and the Papas and we decided it was the perfect selection for our first dance as husband and wife.

Perhaps the funniest part of the evening was when the hotel staff was buzzing about U2 front man, Bono, who was supposedly hanging out in the bar across the hall from our reception.  Unfortunately, “Bono” turned out to be an impersonator but we all had a good laugh.  He even tried to crash the wedding and sing for us!  Luckily, the hotel staff was on it and escorted him out of our ballroom before he made a scene.

After dinner, we all danced the night away and continued to celebrate into the early hours of the morning.  It was an amazing day and  I can’t help but smile when I look through pictures and remember how sublimely happy I felt.  Sure there were glitches here and there but nothing seemed to bother me.  I was on cloud nine and I still haven’t come down. 🙂

Wedding Details Revealed: Part I

Image

May 05, 2012 was the happiest day of my life.  I married the man of my dreams surrounded by my dearest family and friends.  For the past year I have been happily consumed in wedding planning.  My thoughts were flooded with all things wedding related. I created a Pinterest account dedicated to my wedding and I subscribed to Brides magazine so that I could gather as many ideas as possible.  It brought me such joy for the past year to imagine and anticipate my wedding day.  The entire wedding planning process was a completely organic experience and everything came together marvelously, resulting in the perfect day.  See how the day’s events played out below.

Primped and Pampered:
The night before our wedding I barely slept a wink.  I was so excited and nervous for the big day.  the morning of the wedding was slightly stressful as we scurried to make the final touches on decorations at the hotel and make sure everything else was in place and taken care of.  However, when it was time for me to settle into the penthouse suite of the hotel to begin my bridal preparations, I was totally at ease and enjoyed quality time with my girlfriends as we all drank pink champagne and primped and pampered ourselves for our white carpet walk down the aisle.

ImageI have always enjoyed doing my own make-up and part of the fun of planning my wedding was deciding on my make-up palette.  I opted for shimmery nudes and mauves from the Lorac Unzipped eye shadow set as well as 100% Pure blush in Peach, Urban Decay 24/7 Glide On Eyeliner Pencil, Make-Up Forever High Definition Foundation, and MAC liptick in Creme Cup.  I had eyelash extensions provided by WM Lash Lounge and my hair styled by Rosalie Wood of Waves Salon.

The Dress:
Finding a wedding dress was probably the most daunting task in the entire planning process.  I didn’t actually choose my dress until three weeks before the wedding!  I DO NOT recommend this to other brides-to-be.  I was completely stressed out at the fact that I didn’t like anything I tried on.  However, once I found the one, it was worth the wait and the countless headaches.  I had visited several bridal boutiques in Albuquerque and Denver and I finally opted for a simple and elegant gown from the Nordstrom Wedding Suite in Denver.  When I began my search, I didn’t know exactly what style of dress I wanted but I felt that when I saw it I would know. I was open to all styles and fabrics from ball gowns to sheaths, taffeta to lace.  Since I am a very petite person (5’1”) I decided I needed something form-fitting with minimal detail so that I wouldn’t end up looking like a cupcake.  My vision was more red carpet than traditional bride and the mermaid silhouette was the perfect choice encompassing all the criteria on my list.

The Veil:
I found my veil even before I found my dress.  In the beginning I thought I would skip the veil all together in an effort to achieve my non-bridal, red carpet look.  When I received a phone call from Brides by Demetrios about an upcoming “veil event,” I thought I might as well go and check some out.  It took me literally 10 minutes to try on veils and fall in love with one.  I realized that the veil is what truly identifies the bride, and I felt that I needed this gorgeous and symbolic accessory for my moment in time.  I fell head over heels for the scalloped edges trimmed in Swarovski crystals.  It was so feminine and pretty.

Flowers:
I was beyond pleased with our wedding flowers.  Our bouquets and boutonnieres were provided by Manning Florist in Albuquerque and they certainly didn’t disappoint.  I decided on a simple white and blush peony bouquet for myself and  lavender and white roses for my bridesmaids.  They were truly more beautiful than I could have imagined.

Bridesmaids:
Selecting the bridesmaids dresses was one of the first decisions I made.  While browsing the internet for ideas, I found the beautiful champagne lace cocktail dresses on the Nordstrom website.  They were so classy and ornate and I knew all of the girls would look amazing in them.  I must admit that I probably had the most attractive bridal party in the history of weddings, but of course I’m partial. 🙂

For the Mothers:
I wanted to show my appreciation for both my mother and my mother-in-law for all of their love, support, and hard work in creating our wedding day.  I decided to give each of them a custom embroidered handkerchief to not only express my gratitude but to give them something that will always remind them of our special day and how much we love them.

The handkerchief to my mother read:
Mom, To dry your happy tears on my wedding day as you have always dried mine.  Today a bride, tomorrow a wife, always your daughter.  Love, Devon 05.05.12

The handkerchief for my mother-in-law read:
Becky, Thank you for raising your son to be the man of my dreams.  Love, Devon 05.05.12

The Groom and his Groomsmen:
I decided early on that I wanted Zach to wear a sleek black suit instead of a traditional tuxedo for our nuptials.  The inspiration for my groom’s ensemble was Brad Pitt’s black Calvin Klein suit he wore for his wedding to Jennifer Aniston.  It was classy and debonair and I knew Zach would look amazing in something similar.  So, Zach decided to purchase his wedding suit at Men’s Wearhouse and now he has a perfectly tailored suit to wear when another occasion arises.

The Cake:
My sister-in-law, Allie, created our wedding cake and I was so pleased with the outcome.  I trusted her expertise from the beginning, but I was blown away by the final result.  I envisioned a three-tiered all white cake with a modern Gina Freehill cake topper, and I left the rest up to Allie.  I cannot thank her enough for not only taking on the role of my bridesmaid but the added pressure as cake designer.  I probably asked more of her than my other bridesmaids and she handled all her duties with ease.

This concludes Part I of Wedding Details Revealed.  Stay tuned for my next post about the main event!

*Wedding photography by Jayme Charissa Photography

Honeymoon Recap

Zach and I have returned to Albuquerque after nearly two weeks in paradise.  We spent our honeymoon in our favorite city, San Francisco and on the beautiful Hawaiian island of Oahu.  It was truly the perfect vacation combining both the excitement of the big city and the tranquility of a tropical getaway.

After a year of being completely consumed in wedding planning, which could easily be a full-time job on its own, and trying to maintain the responsibilities of the spa, I was in desperate need of some R and R.   Luckily, the honeymoon did just the trick and now I am back to work and enjoying the everyday joys of married life.

We hope you enjoy viewing our honeymoon pics almost as much as we enjoyed taking them. 🙂

San Francisco Treat:
We visited San Francisco last year for a wedding and we instantly fell in love with the city.  It has so much vibrancy, character, and entertainment.  When we discussed potential honeymoon destinations, we  both agreed we wanted to pay San Fran another visit.  Here is a recap of our experience in the city by the bay.

Our first night in San Fran we dined at a lovely Italian restaurant, Zingari.  It now holds the title of best Italian food we’ve ever had!  Aside from the amazing cuisine, they had a live pianist and jazz singer serenading patrons.  It was a very romantic evening.

View from our hotel room at the Westin in Union Square.  A blanket of fog covers the city in the early morning.

After a long day of sight-seeing, city tours, and long treks up and down the inclined streets of the city, we stopped for drinks at a swanky seafood restaurant, Farallon.  The ambiance was truly an underwater fantasy.  Doesn’t Zach look so dapper in this pic? 🙂

“If you’re tired, you take a Napa…” 
A honeymoon highlight was our wine tasting tour in Napa Valley.  It was truly a memorable experience.  There is so much beauty in this area, I felt like I was in the middle of a painting.  The grounds of the wineries were extremely well maintained radiating with colorful flowers and foliage.  I will always remember it as one of the most beautiful places I’ve ever seen.  Take a look for yourself below. 🙂

V. Sattui Winery.  This was my favorite winery.  I was completely taken by the lovely gardens on this property.  We tasted an assortment of wines here and we loved them so much we had a case shipped to our home in Albuquerque.

The Franciscan Winery.  Another exquisite Napa Valley estate.

The Whitehall Lane Winery.  This was a very educational tour featuring a stop in the barrel room.

Cheers from the beautiful Napa Valley!

Somewhere Over the Rainbow!
This is the view from our hotel balcony at the Hilton Hawaiian Village after a short sprinkle, revealing a gorgeous rainbow.

Zach and I took a scenic hike in the lush island mountains.  It seemed to take forever to reach the top, but once we got there we were amazed by the view.

I loved this part of the hike with the bare trees forming an arch over the pathway.

Working our way up the mountain.

Cheers!  We enjoyed many cocktails at our favorite ocean side bar and grill, Tropics.   I think we ate here at least once a day and enjoyed live music by local artists.

The newlyweds on our hotel balcony after an evening out. 🙂

Instead of a traditional wedding gift registry, Zach and I opted for a honeymoon registry allowing our guests to purchase various activities on our honeymoon “wish list”.  We are so thankful to our dear friends and family for contributing to our honeymoon festivities.  You all truly helped us make memories to last a lifetime.

I will be posting wedding photos soon!  For a sneak peek, click here.

Summer-ize Your Skin

The heat is on! While you update your closet with sundresses, swimsuits, sandals, and other summer necessities, remember to summer-ize  your skincare routine as well.  Your skin has different needs as the seasons change so here are my product picks to achieve perfect summer skin this year:

Image Ormedic Balancing Cleanser:
This gel-based, balancing cleanser is extremely gentle for even the most sensitive skin types and will even soothe your skin after prolonged sun exposure.  This is also ideal for summer as your skin may produce more sebum (oil) due to heat and humidity compared to colder, dryer months.

100% Pure Pineapple Juice Facial Scrub:
This all natural facial scrub includes, berries, sake, pineapple juice and papaya enzymes to buff away dulling debris, revealing a healthy, glowing complexion.  The ingredients alone sound like summertime in a bottle!

100% Pure Organic Rose Hydrosol:
Refresh your skin with a spritz of this all natural and beautifully aromatic rose mist.  This unique facial tonique is the collection of the steam of pure rose essential oil produced from steam distillation. This hydrating hydrosol contains exactly the same medicinal properties as essential oil.

Image Daily Defense Tinted Moisturizer SPF 30:
This broad spectrum UVA/UVB moisturizer gives your complexion an instant glow while evening out your skin tone.  Enriched with essential vitamins and potent antioxidants, this hydrating moisturizer plus SPF protects from free radicals and the harmful effects of the sun.

Benefits of Facial Massage

Every facial treatment at Broadway Retreat features a blissful facial massage.  Aside from the relaxation and therapeutic benefits, facial massage techniques also improve the overall appearance of the skin.   

Increases Blood Flow: Facial massage manipulations increase blood flow encouraging the healing process of the skin.  This is beneficial for all skin types particularly those with acne, rosacea and other inflamed skin conditions. 

Improves Circulation: Circulation decreases with age, creating a dull complexion.  Consistent facial massage treatments enhance circulation in the skin resulting in the improvement of the overall appearance.  This is ideal for mature skin types as well as smokers and those who travel often as smoking and air travel limit the amount of oxygen obtained by the cells, ultimately creating a lackluster complexion.

 Treat yourself to a relaxing and results driven facial treatment at Broadway Retreat and see the difference a facial massage makes!
505-246-2400

Perfect Ponies

I have always been extremely lazy when it comes to doing my hair.  My go-to daily hairstyle consists of a messy bun or a basic ponytail.  As an Esthetician, I provide several facials a day which means I am under the steamer for several hours.  As you can imagine, by the end of the work day my make-up is practically melted off and my hair is limp and a bit frizzy due to the excessive moisture from the steam.  So,  I have pretty much given up on styling my hair for work as I end up looking a bit ship-wrecked anyway.  In honor of  my no-nonsense, easy breezy ponytail obsession, I have included pics of my favorite styles and variations of the perfect pony!

Dress up a basic ponytail with a cute accessory like this adorable bow.

This volumized pony is great for a night out.  It is sophisticated and sultry.

This ponytail reminds me of Barbie.  It truly is the perfect pony with just right amount of flip at the end.

I adore this pic!  The side ponytail is absolutely darling and is an easy alternative to a basic pony.

For more hair style pics and ideas visit my Hair and Make-Up Pinterest page. 🙂