A Woodhouse Escape for Mother’s Day

There’s no doubt being a mom is one of the hardest jobs out there, that’s why it’s so important to pamper her with a trip to the spa.  But not just any spa, Woodhouse Day Spa in Mt. Pleasant is the go to place for a luxurious escape from the daily stress of trying to juggle it all. The Charleston owner, Kimberly Powell has made it her mission to offer the best customer service with a wide variety of treatments for optimal relaxation.  In addition to her Sweetgrass & Charleston Wedding candles (sold exclusively at Woodhouse Day Spa), Kim is set to launch a meditation & wellness candle line called Heron, which will include the scents Rise, Radiate & Rest.  These will be available with the opening of her new downtown Charleston Woodhouse Day Spa, which is planned to open this December.   Also, a very busy mother to 3 boys, she finds time to always give back to the community while cooking up a new project.

Woodhouse Day Spa offers over 70 different treatments from facials, massages,  body scrubs, manis and pedis and the state of the art Vichy shower.  I know it might sound overwhelming, so I’ll just share my incredibly relaxing experience.  I opted for the the aromatherapy bath cure and slipped into a state of bliss.  The head-to-toe ritual begins with a dry brush exfoliation and then 25 minutes of soaking in lavender bath salts.

Next up was the seasonal massage which included a mint julep and lavender shea and cocoa butter, blended with an organic honey butter serum.  My skin felt super hydrated thanks to the sunflower seed oil, honey, and vitamins A,B, and E that are packed in their products as well.  I was finished off with the Farmhouse Fresh Fluffy Bunny Lotion and Sunflower Honey Butter mixed together, and yes it felt as good as it sounds.  The beauty of it all is that you can take home the experience by purchasing all of the the products in their retail boutique.

If you want to offer some variety you can gift the seasonal massages so mom has something to look forward to for the next escape.  Also, if you spend $300 or more on a gift card you can get a curated spa gift box including a Sleep Soothing Mist, Lavender Eye Pillow, Organic Citron Green Tea Tin, Serene Bath Salts, Body Moisturizer and Pleat Soap by Voya.  If you’re a last minute shopper like me, you’ll love that you can purchase their gift cards conveniently online here and customize it to make it more personal.

Wellness guru Kimberly Powell hand picked her favorite products from her boutique so mom can be pampered at home too.  The Athena 7 Minute Lift reduces the appearance of sagging skin, lines, and wrinkles in 7 minutes.  Give the gift of a bronze glow with Vita Liberata Rapid Tan Mousse, the rapid development technology speeds up the tanning process for a light sunkissed glow after one hour, a medium bronze result after two hours, and a deep tan after three or more hours. Certified organic botanicals and moisture locking technology nourish the skin and give 72-hour hydration. For a blissful bath pick up a jar of Red Poppy & Hemp Mineral Bath Salt.  For a sweet and citrusy scent try this organic fragrance by Provence Sante Eau de Toilette Fragrance Spray.

So, if your undecided on what to give mom or what hints you want to drop for this Mother’s Day, then make it easy and give the gift of blissful relaxation at Woodhouse Day Spa. As a mom who feels like I juggle 4 jobs, an urban escape for a couple of hours is just what I need for some peace of mind and rejuvenation.  Also, tune into Lowcountry Live this Friday for more details and how you could win an aromatherapy bath and seasonal massage at Woodhouse Day Spa.

Photography by Nicole Mickle

Friday Night at Charleston Fashion Week

 Last week the south’s most celebrated style event, Charleston Fashion Week kicked off for it’s 12th year.  I look forward to this event every year, because it brings some of the most talented emerging designers from all over the U.S.  This year’s contestants were some of the most diverse and inclusive groups we’ve seen.  From the 12 year old designer Kelly Callaway from Phoenix, to Joan Madison from Ohio with decades of experience, to Kenya Mollie of Project Runway fame.  As a judge on the Emerging Designer panel, I have the hardest job to help decide who’s the winner.  This year was one of the toughest years because everyone was a star in their own way.  Tomorrow I’ll be featuring the semi-finalists on my blog.

This year I took the glam but comfortable approach to my outfits.  It was all about teal for me from head to toe.  This Zac Zac Posen dress was the perfect segue into Spring and the marabou slippers I picked up from Julep last year after their runway show.

In real life I don’t like to wear a lot of makeup, so I have to make sure my skin is always on point.  The week before fashion week I made sure I got an appointment at Germain Dermatology for my favorite facials – The Hydro Silk Peel and the Cryofacial.  If you want super hydrated skin and a visible reduction of puffiness then this is the combo you want to get.  I also squeezed in lash extensions with my girl Becca at Simply Smitten Beauty Bar.  It’s so nice to wear wear minimal eye makeup because longer lashes make such a difference in the beauty routine.

I love to pile on the gold jewelry and these bangles, gold ring, and Goldbug earrings from Croghan’s Jewel Box were the right accents.

Zac Zac Posen Bay Pleated Tiered Gown from Far Fetch $556 // JW Micro Bag by Taxidermy $895 // Goldbug Shining Star Earrings $135, Gold Plated Valla Ring $115, 14k Bangle Bracelets $140, $175, and $225 from Croghan’s Jewel Box // Remy Rotenier for Bella Luce 8.68ctw Remy Cut Eterno Yellow “Tournesol Ring” from Jtv $80.99

Photography by Clifford Pate,  Manicure by Mylk Bar,  Lashes by Simply Smitten Beauty Bar

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Makeup and Mexican at Freshfields Village

There’s always new places to explore and shop at Freshfields Village.  For you last minute shoppers there’s something for everyone on your list.  Christmas shopping can be exhausting, but doing it at Freshfields Village is a breeze, with all the parking and stores in close proximity.  They even did the work for you with their curated gift guide – click here for some great gift ideas.

Who doesn’t love a little pampering in their life?  Blue Mercury is the one stop shop for the beauty buff in your life or someone who just needs a little refresh in the makeup department.  Carrying favorites like Bobbi Brown, La Mer, Darphin, Kiehl’s, Chantecaille, Living Proof, RMS Beauty, Goop! and Smith & Cult, they have you covered.  They also have an in-house spa, which offers treatments like Oxygen Facials, glycolic peels, and waxing services, plus they do makeup applications.   This Bobbi Brown everything eyes book is perfect for that budding makeup artist friend or someone who wants to explore their skills.

Bobbi Brown everything eyes book $14.95,  LAFCO fresh cut gardenia – living room classic candle $42,  BOBBI BROWN lip color $29 from Blue Mercury

Super Goop! is a pretty amazing skincare line that has SPF in all of their products.  From lip balm, lotion, refreshing spray, body oil, your skin in protected with their 30-50 spf.  These are a couple of my favorites.

SUPERGOOP! spf 50 everyday $32,  SUPERGOOP! sun defying sunscreen oil spf 50 $34 from Blue Mercury

Mexican has got to be one of my favorite foods out there and I was excited to find out that Cantina 76 was opening at Freshfields Village.  With locations in Columbia and Greenville, I’m glad they picked Kiawah for their 3rd outpost.  My recommendations?  The Dirty Queso to share, Roasted Chicken Taco, and you can’t go wrong with any of their Enchiladas.

Another great thing is that the portions are generous and are perfect to share.  My kids are the pickiest eaters and they even found a few things that they liked and munched on the endless chips and salsa.

Pella Faux Fur Coat in Leopard $348 ,Virgo Sweater $198 ,Watson Jeans $178.00 from J. McLaughlin // Sunglasses from Village Optical in Freshfields Village // Jewelry by Julie Vos from GDC  Home // “Brody” platform oxford by Summit White Mountain Shoes $148.95 from Nordstrom

Photography by Libby Williams 

Here’s my 6 hours in Freshfields video which highlights some of my favorite haunts including Tres Carmen, Blue Mercury, Beija Flor, and Dolittle’s.  Hopefully it will give you some gift ideas and places you’ll want to splurge on yourself.

Video by Brennan Wesley

Give the Gift of Glowing Skin

As I grow older, skincare has been become my top priority.  Your skin is your body’s largest organ and it’s important to make sure your nourishing it and keeping it hydrated with the best products on the planet.  I’m grateful that I’m exposed to very knowledgeable people in this market from my dermatologist Dr. Marguerite Germain, shopping at the organic skincare boutique Wildcraft, to meeting the owner of the organic skincare line True Botanicals.  The gift of radiant skin is always a great idea and I’ve picked out a few of my favorite items.

Back in October I attended a True Botanicals event  hosted by the beautiful all natural beauty blogger Jessica Morse of Bare Beauty at The Dewberry Hotel.  The founder of True Botanicals, Hilary Peterson was on a tour to spread their all organic goodness and it was so enlightening to hear about their ethos.  Their certified organic products made from botanical extracts contain antioxidants, vitamins, essential fatty acids, and are the most heavenly scented because of the essential oils.  You can feel the quality when you use their products and it feels good to use them because they are MADE SAFE™, Cruelty free, Non-GMO, and Gluten free.

From left to right: Nourishing Lotion, GROVE $ 38.00, Nutrient Toner, CLEAR $48, Nutrient Mist, RENEW $48,  Resurfacing Moisture Mask $90 from True Botanicals // Abalone shell tree from Vieuxtemps

I love the toners because it gives my skin an invigorating boost that it needs after I wash it, plus it reduces blemishes, minimizes pore size, and plumps my skin.  Their anti-aging Cellular Repair Serum and Pure Radiance Oil keep my skin feeling hydrated while leaving my skin dewy and glowing.  You might have heard the many benefits of Vitamin C in your skincare products – from boosting collagen production, to diminishing the signs of aging, to correcting dark spots this is my new daily regimen.  I mix the Vitamin C Booster with the Cellular Repair Serum, RENEW to stimulate collagen production and even my skin tone.  I use the Resurfacing Moisture Mask to exfoliate especially in the winter time when you need to slough off that dead skin.  The Nourishing Wash & Nourishing Lotion infuses a woodsy citrus scent while it gives your skin a youthful glow because it fights free radical damage with potent antioxidants.   I’ve become obsessed with their products because I’ve seen my skin improve instantly.

Owner Holly Thorpe of  Wildcraft stocks her shelves with a highly curated mix of handcrafted, organic, cruelty-free lines of skincare, cosmetics, fragrance, haircare, bodycare + wellness blends.   Holly has researched and done her homework because every product she carries from Charleston to California are ethically + sustainably sourced.  Her shop located in South Windmere of West Ashley offers the right mix of product without being too overwhelming.  Here are some of products that are perfect to splurge on yourself or that special someone who deserves some pampering.

Axiology Natural Organic Lipstick in Attitude. 100% vegan. Attitude glides on as a hot, hibiscus-pink pop with a blush of blue undertones. Popular among both world-travelers and urbanites, this color evokes lustrous Indian saris and bright neon billboards—and will keep your lips loaded with moisture $30 from Wildcraft 

MCMC Fragrances in Hunter – With tobacco absolute, organic Bourbon vanilla and balsam fir, this fragrance is best worn with a flannel shirt. $95 eu de parfum & $45, roll-on perfume oil from Wildcraft 

Bless by Leahlani Beauty Balm. Makeup remover, moisturizer & lip treatment. Rich, organic butters coalesce with the most lush organic and cold pressed beauty oils to nurture and bless your skin for an unparalleled softness. Bless is a nutrient dense silken moisturizer that will soften the skin and deeply nourish the complexion. Infused with nutrient dense, organic and cold pressed oils, Bless will help to reduce inflammation, strengthen and protect your precious complexion $49 from Wildcraft 

Leahlani Meli Glow Illuminating Nectar Mask. Say aloha to a soft, supple and more even-toned complexion with Meli GLOW.  This illuminating nectar fusion mask, filled with enzyme and vitamin rich tropical fruits, nutrient dense beauty oils, skin moisturizing and plumping hyaluronic acid and stimulating clays steeped in the creamy fusion of organic Hawaiian nectar.  She will deeply nourish and strengthen the barrier of your skin, delivering a bountiful dose of active enzymes and antioxidant rich oils to each cell on your precious face. Plump skin cells, deeply nourish and gently exfoliate the skin, helping to promote a more even skin tone while unveiling that ‘aloha GLOW’ $49 from Wildcraft 

Leahlani Kalmina Coconut Cream Cleansing Powder. Your cleansing ritual will never be the same. Silken coconut milk, soothing oatmeal, vitamin and antioxidant rich tropical fruits, softening clays and organic vanilla beans come together to create the most exotic and opulent cleansing powder you have ever experienced. Organic hibiscus flower, wildcrafted camu camu fruit and water activated vitamin C are a powerhouse trio working harmoniously together to boost collagen production and even out the complexion $48 from Wildcraft 

Leahlani Siren Serum. Radiant and skin-brightening serum infused with vitality boosting micro-algae and organic and cold pressed oils rich in Vitamin C + A.  Luminous and youth enhancing blend of Sea Buckthorn CO2, carrot seed, geranium, jasmine, rose, ylang ylang and sweet citrus will absorb beautifully into your skin $44 from Wildcraft 

Josh Rosebrook Vital Balm Cream. A uniquely effective, powerful moisturizer that combines the occlusive, breathable benefits of a natural balm with the absorption and luxury finish of a cream. This multi-benefit moisturizer supports true skin health and beauty by facilitating maximum cellular hydration, repair and restoring vital skin function $47 from Wildcraft 

Josh Rosebrook Advanced Hydration Mask. Designed to help replenish and retain maximum skin cell hydration this unique treatment can be used daily to elevate skin appearance, vitality and function. Lock in moisture, plump, condition, and improve skin circulation which protects and supports healthy dermal function and slows skin decline. Removal the mask without water rinsing, which helps slow moisture loss and assists in maximum cellular hydration and retention $66 from Wildcraft 

Follow them on Instagram @shop_wildcraftchs for updates products and events.  They’ll be hosting a couple fun events next weekend – 12/15&16: Plants, Planters, Wreaths, and Illustrations Pop Up with Gertie’s Goods. 12/15: 11am-2pm Brow sugaring with Rock Beauty.

Photography by Clifford Pate

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Cryo-date

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I’m a huge fan of Germain Dermatology and the groundbreaking services that they offer. I started going to them a few years ago when I had issues with my skin and I love using their custom skincare products and taking advantage of their skin rejuvenating procedures. So when they invited me to try out their new Cryosauna and Cryofacial I was intrigued and had to try it out.

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Before I went in for my treatment, the expert on hand – Mel filled me in on all the amazing benefits. Whole Body Cryotherapy is a systemic anti-inflammatory treatment involving skin exposure to ultra-low temperatures for a brief controlled time. When the skin is exposed to those temperatures (-140 to -150 degrees Celsius) the blood vessels then release anti-inflammatory proteins that go to any inflamed area in the body. The treatment is dry and tolerable and lasts for 1.5-3 minutes.  They give you a robe to enter the chamber but you have to strip down to just a pair of gloves, socks, and slippers so your extremities are protected.  I’m a wimp when it comes to cold temperatures so I’m surprised I stood in the chamber for almost 3 minutes! The body also releases endorphins and it boosts your metabolism (burning up to 800 calories over the next 48 hours after one treatment). After one treatment I had a burst of energy that lasted with me the entire day.  I felt both relaxed and ready to tackle my usual hectic schedule.

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Cryotherapy can also help with rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, musculoskeletal injuries, autoimmune and other inflammatory disorder, skin disorders such as dermatitis and psoriasis, skin aging, skin elasticity, and cellulite, athletic performance, weight management, depression, and post surgical recovery.   The cost is $65 and well worth it if you are having any of these issues.

If your a busy person on the go and you want to see fast results, the Cryofacial is where it’s at!  A controlled beam of vaporized liquid nitrogen is used to cool the skin of the face, scalp, and neck area. During these super hot days of 90 + temps, this treatment is a real treat!  The 10-12 minute facial is $45 and is great for pore reduction while collagen production is stimulated.  Because of this the skin tightens and wrinkles are reduced.

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 Toxins in the skin are reduced by increasing blood flow and when treating the scalp: hair growth is stimulated, by increasing blood flow. It also reduces inflammation and puffiness of the skin.  The most visible difference that I saw was my the disappearance of the dark circle under my eyes.  I’ve heard a lot of models pop in to get a Cryofacial right before a photoshoot so their skin can look flawless, and now I see why.  The other great thing is that you can still wear makeup while you get the facial. Perfect if you need to squeeze in a quickie facial in the middle of the day.

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  I totally recommend the Cryotherapy treatment if you want to see and feel results.  It’s refreshing and rejuvenating, and totally convenient because Germain takes walk-ins for these treatments.  Now go experience the chill factor and tell them the Curator sent you!

Jumpsuit from 7 Gypsy, necklace by Kate Davis Jewelry

Photography and Videography by Terrence Edwards of Current Visuals

Getting that Healthy Glow at Germain Dermatology

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It’s no mystery that your skin changes with age and exposure to the sun and I have personally felt the affects of all of this.  Blessed with pretty decent skin from my Filipino mother and Italian father I’m still not safe from aging and the elements.  Being proactive with a skincare regimen, protecting myself from the sun’s harmful rays, and drinking lots of water is how I’m taking on this challenge.  Thankfully Germain Dermatology is helping me with that new skincare routine.

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Starting with the Skin Tone Enhancement Lotion.  This bottle contains botanical ingredients such as Kojic acid, Arbutin, Bearberry and contains green tea and other soothing antioxidants.  One of the main ingredients is glyceryl stearate which acts as a lubricant on the skin’s surface, and gives the skin a soft and smooth appearance. It also slows the loss of water from the skin by forming a barrier on the skin’s surface. The Advanced Vitamin C Brightening Serum is basically vitamin C in a bottle and helps to brighten and even out skin tone. Using some kind of under eye moisturizer goes without saying these days.  The Hydrating Eye Serum with super hydration benefits of Hyaluronic Acid to soothe, smooth, and plump the skin in that much needed area.

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The little blue bottle of hydration for your skin is the Hydra Boost Serum.  The serum is packed with ingredients that reduce the signs of aging while giving you brighter, firmer and rejuvenated skin. And don’t worry, no artificial dyes were used to make this beautiful hue of blue.  The Ultra Lite Moisture Dew Cream is exactly how it sounds, it’s light on the face while  moisturizing the skin with oil-free ingredients and plant extracts such as aloe vera and squalane emollient.

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Last but not least is the Super Sheer Physical Sunscreen SPF 50+ with both UVA and UVB protection.  The suns rays are damaging and protecting your skin everyday is so vital. This sunscreen is light and smooth without the cakey layered feeling that you get with your average sunscreen, so it’s perfect to wear under your makeup.

Photography by Clifford Pate

 

About Charleston Shop Curator

Charleston Shop Curator serves as a fashion blog and shopping guide to showcase the incredible diversity of style in Charleston, South Carolina. We continually strive to expose local creative talents from designers to stores. Here you can find all of the treasures Charleston has to offer, and more.

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