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Gift GuidesHoliday Gift Guide ’10: Man Up

ONE. Philips Norelco SensoTouch 3D Electric Razor — We have found the Holy Grail of electric shavers with the Philips Norelco SensoTouch 3D, and any man should be so lucky to get it as a gift this holiday season! The shaving heads follow contours and curves perfectly, allowing for a smooth shave every time, wet or dry. Its handle features an ergonomic grip for better control and precision, and it’s cordless, complete with a travel pouch. To sum up, it shaves well, handles well, and travels well – perfect.

TWO. Kenneth Cole Dress Belt Box Set — Our contributing LA editor says that almost every year, her husband requests a new belt, which apparently many men need. Over time, she’s realized that belts wear out, and it’s really hard to find a simple yet stylish, decent-quality belt that looks just as good with a suit as it does with jeans. We love that this box set offers four ways to wear a reversible leather belt: black, brown, dressed up or dressed down — and all for a good price, $58. And because it’s so multi-purpose, it almost qualifies as a gadget. So boyfriend, husband, brother, Dad … they’ll all get something out of it.

THREE. HTC Windows Phone –Guys always love the latest and coolest gadgets, so this is the perfect gift for the man who could use a bit of mobile upgrading.  The HTC Windows Phone is currently carried on T-Mobile and AT&T (with Verizon coming in the near future) and combines the hardware prowess of HTC phones with the new Windows 7 mobile operating system.  The work/personal  phone is completely customizable and integrates all his social media accounts into one central place.  Now he can open his phone and check your latest tweets, foursquare check-ins, and Facebook updates on one screen. Annoyed by your boyfriend working on the weekend? The HTC phone makes it easy just to turn off work email alerts until Monday morning. Though I generally shy away from touchscreen phones, the 4.3in screen is very user friendly, with typing feedback and the auto-correct is much less invasive than on the iPhone.  Plus the 5mb camera is superior to any other phone camera I’ve tried (all the better to take pictures of you) and comes with XBox Live (for the guy guy in him.)

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Dining & Nightlife, Hotels, TravelSè San Diego

There are few things more refreshing after a long flight than to walk into a luxurious hotel suite that feels like it could be home. Well, that is, if my home were a swanky pad furnished with custom Italian furniture, floor-to-ceiling stone wall spa bathrooms, Brazilian walnut hardwood floors, and the most luxurious bed adorned with fine linens and down pillows. That’s how I felt last Friday night- as if I had walked into a chic dream apartment, when I checked into the Sè San Diego after a six hour flight from New York City.

Located right in the heart of downtown, the Sè San Diego is just a few minutes away from the airport and within walking distance to most of the city’s attractions, restaurants, clubs and shops.  The building is rather unassuming on the outside, but the moment you walk through the 9000 lb bronze pivot door, you’re transported into a luxurious world of art, design, comfort and decadence. If I were to pick one word to describe the hotel it would be sensual– as the entire experience is designed to envelope all five senses. READ MORE

Bath & Body, Beauty, Food, Gift Guides, Paper GoodsLast-Minute Valentines

Okay, it’s February 11th–are you still looking for a Valentine’s Day gift?! I’ve got some quick ideas for you that any Valentine would love, no matter what your budget is! First up, l’Âge de Thé’s Love Blend loose leaf tea costs only $6 and would be a super sweet way to send your love to someone. It’s a black tea with strawberry, chocolate, and just a pinch of rose petals. And it tastes delicious!

Linda & Harriett put together a Limited Edition Goody Bag that contains a note pad, a box of note cards, a pencil, and a cute little reusable heart bag (tied with a handwritten gift tag!). Of course, the paper goods are the top-notch quality you would come to expect from L&H, and you can choose from a set of designs. The Goody Bag is $26 and would make a thoughtful Valentine, don’t you think?

Lastly, check out Elemis’ Exotic Frangipani Monoi Moisture Melt. The name is a mouthful, but it’s so worth it. At $48, it’s the most expensive on this list, but oh so luxurious. Monoi is made in Polynesia by soaking frangipangi flowers in coconut oil, and the result is a silky, moisturizing oil that is a treat for your skin. It would be perfect to use for a sensual massage and is nicely fragrant, so I’m sure your Valentine would loooove it. Have a happy Valentine’s Day!

Beauty, SkincareSee the Difference

Still scrambling for the perfect Mother’s Day gift for the most wonderful mom in the world? I think all moms deserve the Elemis See the Difference Eye Duo set. It’s a set of anti-aging treatments that will soothe and revitalize her eyes, presented nicely in a sleek silver box that she can reuse. The set has 2 products to be used in 2 steps for a complete eye area treatment:

  • Absolute Eye Serum: The serum is to be applied first, and contains rosewood, osmanthus, soothing comfrey, lavender and chamomile to help decongest the eye area. As serums go, this one is lighter and doesn’t leave you looking oily after applying. It is really soothing and aims to reduce dark circles and puffiness.
  • Pro-Collagen Eye Renewal: This cream/gel is the true anti-aging component of the treatment. It smoothes and firms the eye area and has been proven to reduce the appearance of wrinkles by up to 60% over 4 weeks. It’s also light and contains Padina pavonica, Chlorella, and buckwheat.

This set will leave your mom feeling pampered, soothed, and looking more youthful. The value of the See the Difference Duo is $163 – but it’s available exclusively at Nordstrom and Nordstrom.com for $99. Quite a deal for such a prestige skin care brand!

Beauty, SkincareGetting Buff

My love for Elemis products grows every time I try something new from the line.  Back in the day when the line first came to the US, I sampled a few things, but now I’ve gotten overwhelmed by the wide range of products from the brand  (truly a solution for every skin type!).  I ran into trouble when I started using the wrong things for my face, so it was a good thing that I had that Elemis facial and evaluation at Bergdorf’s last month and the aesthetician set me straight on what I really needed.

One thing she prescribed to help me clear up some of the congestion from using the wrong products as well as regular maintenance is the Elemis Skin Buff, a product that has since not left the coveted spot in my shower rack – right next to my shampoo and razor. READ MORE

Beauty, New York, Spas & SalonsRecession Friendly Facial

Even in the depth of economic dispair, a trip to Bergdorf Goodman provides reprieve from the winter blues. It may seem ironic that I list this legendary luxury store as recession friendly (and I don’t mean “just look and don’t buy”), but located on the beauty level is the Elemis SpaPod where you can get a facial, a massage and an eyebrow wax for $55.  Say again?

Elemis is one of my favorite lines of skincare and in New York, it is exclusively carried at Bergdorf. Behind the counter is the SpaPod is a small room where the Elemis aestheticians performs facials using a range of Elemis consumer and spa-only products.  I stopped by after work yesterday evening for a 30 minute Power Boost Facial and was impressed with the convenience and quality of their services.

The facial starts with an electronic examination of your skin in the Visia Complexion Analysis Machine, which quickly measures sun damage, dry skin, oiliness, bacteria, pore size and wrinkles.  Armed with this knowledge of your skin, the aesthetician can quickly prescribe the correct Elemis product to suit your condition. For example, it turns out that I’ve been using the wrong Elemis mask at home, but now I’ve been corrected. READ MORE

Beauty, Fashion, Insider's ObsessionsInsider’s Obsessions: Alison Brod

If you work in the fashion and beauty industry, you’ve probably heard of Alison Brod. She is the founder of one of the most successful fashion, beauty and lifestyle public relations firms in the U.S. From producing fashion shows to traditional media outreach, Alison Brod Public Relations does it all. You’ve probably heard of most of the brands on her client roster, which include Gap, Peter Thomas Roth, Kooba, Susana Monaco and Darphin – to name only a few. More importantly, you probably read about them on a daily basis. Undoubtedly, Alison is not only adept at analyzing the latest and greatest trends, but also transforming them into ideas and executing them to perfection for her clients. So what are her obsessions of the moment? Let’s find out! READ MORE

Beauty, Celebrities, MakeupHow To: Get Angie’s Neutral Look

Want to look like Angelina Jolie? Don’t we all! I usually think she looks beautiful (and I always covet her Louboutins), but I was especially enamored with her neutral makeup look at the Spirit Awards last week. So much that we consulted our friend and celebrity makeup artist Emily Kate Warren for tips on how to re-create the look. (Many thanks for the wonderful tips!) Then I tapped into my arsenal of makeup products to try to recreate the natural glow effect. (Sadly, no amount of makeup I ever put on will have me looking like Angie).

I think it’s tricky making this look work because you essentially have to put your face out there with very little color, but a lot of polish. When working with nudes and neutrals, it is also tricky to find shades that don’t wash you out, so I recommend testing out a bunch of products to get the ones that work for you. Below, I’ve listed the tools and tricks that did it for me. READ MORE

BeautyBest of Beauty 2007

Yet another year has passed and during this time, we’ve made many beauty discoveries. The lovely Annie of Blogdorf Goodman invited us, along with our fellow beauty bloggers, to talk about the beauty products we fell in love with – whether they were old or new. Altogether, we came up with 10 products that were favorites for 2007.

1. Sula by Susanne Lang
2. Josie Maran Concealer Stick
3. Lancome UV Expert 20
4. Suki Lemongrass Cleanser
5. Cargo PlantLove Lipstick
6. Kerastase Reflection Collection
7. Essie Polish in Material Girl
8. Space NK
9. Elemis Tri-Enzyme Resurfacing Facial Wash
10. Ecru Hair Care

Want to find out why we love these products? Just click below! READ MORE

Beauty, Hair, Skincare, TravelEssentials For A Summer Escape: Part 2

Part 2 is all about hair and skincare! We have recommendations on everything that you need – compact, efficient and just perfect to take with you on your relaxing summer trip. READ MORE

The Daily Obsession draws from the expertise of a coast-to-coast editorial team offering dedicated readers reports of the most luxurious products and trends. We provide sophisticated and relevant angles on the latest fashion trends, must-have beauty products, insider interviews, travel destinations and of course, our current obsessions.

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