Monday, March 4, 2013


Très charmante-what we thought, after we shared a morning breakfast chat with the Haute Couture designer, Nabil Hayari....who joined a group of media types for a stateside launch of his elegant floral, fruity, and woodsy fragrances- Only For Her, Goldy and Broderie... now available here...
 at C.O. Bigelow.

Born in France,  the designer, shared with us his love of drawing as a child. His subject, women---naturellement---and their complex passionate personalities---that fortunately -led to a blossoming  career of crafting exquisite, hand made gowns for ladies who want to look beautiful---two red Carpet stunners-which were on display...and now perfumes.

As is a French tradition, perfumes developed by couture houses--- is once again marvelously re-enacted.  We sampled all three...and it is readily apparent the complex elegance of all.

Interestingly,  our table of women of various age groups- all had their own favorites- but all agreed on the glamorous appeal of the entire collection.

Delicate flowers---serve as the core of transporting elements for all of the scents---with Only For Her-a floral oriental we felt ---so lovely for day-to-night occasions...   white flowers such as peonies, lilies and gardenias...and lace embroidery inspiring the romantic aromas of Broderie...while the gleam of gold jewelry inspiring Goldy-a complex woody powdery parfum developed by the acclaimed nose of Dorothee Piot of Robertet. And of course, like the finest fragrances...Hayari Parfums are made in Grasse from natural ingredients.

We loved the packaging too---a box that unfolds like a flower, glass bottles that are numbered...and the stopper top of pure crystal.

PLUS: Until March on a one of a kind couture dress by Hayari on CHARITY BUZZ...with proceeds benefiting the American Heart Association.


Alexandre Flueckiger, Alpeor

A few days later we ventured downtown to the very jewel of s boutique OSSWALD...that proffers very hard to find luxury fragrances and skincare from mostly European sources.

The occasion for a visit this time---besides we'd love to try everything...was to become acquainted with the made in the Swiss Alps skincare line ALPEOR®...and its leading light, Alexandre Flueckiger.

As we learned, this collection of luxurious skin care is cultivated from the family owned company's own garden of 4000 rare plant species in the magnificent Swiss-Valais region---where the core ingredients including these carefully sourced rare plants---are then combined with something called Bio-Phyto-Complex (BPC) technology that rejuvenates and stimulates cellular activities, that joins specific plant extracts = maximizing the efficacy of each Alpeor product.

This matters as many brands offer beauty care products which may sound luxe and have costly ingredients but in fact do little as the formulas do not penetrate the dermis deep enough to matter. Not a problem here!

Alpeor products aid in anti- aging--- with goodies that firm, hydrate, brighten, even out tones, repair and protect the well as eliminate toxins and cleanse the skin-all essential first steps.
Edelweiss- is a special high altitude flower found in the Alps-known for its hardiness...and a key ingredient in Apleor products

Another big parabens, mineral oil, phenoxyethanol, silicone, PEG, chemical-dyes, or alcohol this European company believes in not only the effectiveness of its products, but also the safety of its offerings---eliminating questionable ingredients that frankly seem to be standard in other high-end lines we try.

Yet Alpeor manages to have the same benefits ---and 'feel' ---what we would expect given the exclusive nature of the line. All of the creams and serums we demo-ed were quickly absorbed and basically scentless.

The Apleor collection is rather extensive-with different cleansers, toners, creams and serums---grouped into 3 areas...yet we feel all selections can work for many different skin types.

Our super sensitive skin had no problem with the Intensive Day Care hydrating lotion that we've be trying, packed with the aforementioned BPC, minerals and cornflower flavonoids to boost cellular metabolism (for that new skin glow) and meadow sweet seed oil that is not oily at all,  but with just enough moisture worthiness for normal skin.

ZO® MEDICAL products are sold in physician's offices (for now, anyway)...and belong in the cosmeceutical category of serious, targeted, skincare goodies, packed with high end, multi-tasking ingredients- available without a prescription.

This line of several products--- all have very medical sounding names and are cleanly packaged which to us means something...nothing extraneous...and where needed airless pumps to preserve the quality of the product.

No surprise though,  ZO® MEDICAL has garnered a lot of meaningful attention because its  medical director, Dr. Zein Obagi--- is the founder of the acclaimed  and still in demand-Obagi Nu-Derm® and Obagi Blue Peel® kit...and he also launched a Skin Health Products line in 2008.

We were intrigued. ZO MEDICAL in general is not we feel that the multi-functional product we have been using for two weeks now-the HYDRAFIRM™Eye Brightening Repair Crème a great way to test out this label on an area of the face that tends to show signs of aging, first.

A little goes a long way---a tiny dab of the rather thick white cream--- pat-ted down under each all that is needed---and no worries---it easily is absorbed on dry skin. We use it right after we wash our face in the there's a bit of moisture left on our skin that's trapped in.

Ingredient wise...there's shea butter that hydrates, and the caffeine, and  enzymatic vasodilators and coenzyme A that targets the puffy parts...more of a problem for us after we remove our swim goggles after swim practice...and so we re-apply to get that under control, as needed.

There is also retinol and something called bioimetic proteins in the mix to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles and encourage natural collagen production to restore the elasticity of this fragile area of the face... though we feel more permanent change always takes a minimum of 2-3 months of regular use of any product-recommended as 2x daily.

PLUS optical diffusers to deflect away from the appearance of dark circles---though for those that use cover-up for that purpose...make-up easily glides over the product.

BTW: There is also a line of Skin Health Products...that are available online...and can be used as well for therapeutic purposes, protection (from the sun, for example),  and the daily maintenance of healthy skin.