Checking out Radiance Yoga’s New Digs

Radiance Yoga used to be one of the studios lining Old Town’s main artery, King Street. And it did have that Old Town charm. You walked up a steep staircase to a lobby and two studios that looked like it may have been someone’s personal dwelling at one time. The main one had exposed-brick walls, hard-wood floors and windows that faced out to busy King Street. It was a very comfortable, albeit small, space.

But they’ve left their old home and have traded it for a new one on Prince Street. And I must say that I was pleasantly surprised. It’s on the second floor of a very nondescript building on Prince. When I initially walked in and up the stairs to a white-walled, very plain area, I remember hoping it would be nice, and I got my wish. When you first enter on your right, there’s a bunch of shoe cubbies, a place to hang your coats, and the front desk is the next section down. Two pillars separate the cubby area from reception, so it doesn’t feel so closed off. From there, you’ll walk down a short hallway and find the centerpiece of the space. A round table with chairs and a round light that’s surrounded by this sparse, silver-painted wavy stripes on the ceiling that are supposed to look like the sun (this is Radiance Yoga, remember?). And I just loved this detailing. The main lobby was offset with one darker green/teal wall (I just love an accent wall, too), and the bathrooms were this rich purple color.

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Two sets of double doors (say that five times fast) lie just outside the main lobby area that lead to the two new studios. I took class on the studio on the left. And I have to say, even though the place feels new, it’s still got that charm. The black-framed windows looked older and let in some noise, but it wasn’t nearly as intrusive as the King Street space. The floor looked worn (I’m not sure if it was new or not) and added character to the place. My instructor was tough, but great. During the very first class I took with her, she told our entire class that “we are here to sweat.” And she kept that promise. We performed plenty of vinyasas and held positions for long periods of time. My chest is still feeling all those planks we did on Saturday.Image

I’ve always felt that the space is equally as important as whoever is teaching the class. And I think Radiance has found the perfect balance between charming and old and nice and new. Go check it out if you have the chance.

Please note: you can’t make left turns from Washington Street onto Price (I know, I tried), so find another way to get there.

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Sunscreen Has Come a Long Way, Baby

When it comes to beauty faux-pas, my biggest misstep was that, until very recently, I didn’t put on sunscreen every day. I work indoors, and I almost always wear a baseball cap whenever I go outside. But the biggest deterrence was that just about every sunscreen I tried broke me out. Acne.org (a great resource for those of us with troubled skin) recommended Olay’s Sensitive Skin Moisturizer with SPF. It seemed to work well, but after applying it for four consecutive days when I was in L.A. last fall, the pimples started appearing.

So when I was in San Francisco this past November, the friend that I visited was like, “I can’t believe you don’t wear it everyday?” So not long after that, I called my dermatologist’s office (if you go here, ask for Dr. Suarez) and wanted to know what they recommended. They told me Anthelios or Neutrogena. I’ve had bad luck with Neutrogena’s face lotion in the past, but I’d had never heard of Anthelios before.

I was slightly sticker shocked when I learned that Anthelios Ultra Light Sunscreen Fluid, made by La Roche-Posay, is $33.50 a bottle. But since the company offer full returns if you don’t like the product, and two free samples too, I decided it was worth it. And I’ve just had the best luck with the product. It’s never broken me out, and I’ve been wearing it for about three weeks straight.

It’s watery, unlike a lot of other sunscreens, but it absorbs quickly. It does leave a faint white sheen, but it also goes away and is much more subtle than other brands. It’s got that faint chemical/sunscreen smell to it, but it’s not overpowering. Best of all, CVS recently put it on sale for $20, and with the other coupons I had, I only paid around $12 for it. And I think we can all appreciate a good deal. So if you’re looking for a great sunscreen for acne-prone skin, go out and buy La Roche-Posay’s Anthelios. You won’t be disappointed.

And just as an aside, I’m also in love with Hawaiian Tropic’s Silk Hydration Lotion Sunscreen. It goes on like a moisturizer, smells tropical and floral, and I’ve never been burned wearing it. It makes me want to put on sunscreen, which is something I’ve never felt before. Heck, I can still remember when my Dad told me to get “greased up,” because that’s what putting on sunscreen felt like. And I’m glad that those days are long gone.sunscreen

Can you Bottle Happiness?

Butter London's Slapper

After I hit up this year’s Vintage Virginia Wine and Food Festival, I decided it was time to hunt for my latest nail polish obsession: Butter London’s (don’t you just love that name?) Slapper. It’s a gorgeous, rich turquoise color that is perfect for summer.

And just like back in March when I decided I had to have Essie’s Mint Candy Apple–a perfect spring shade–I drove to two different stores to get it. My first stop was the Sephora in Fair Oaks Mall. A cashier told me that Butter London is something only Sephora’s online store carries. She was nice enough to tell me that Ulta in Fair Lakes stocks it. So after getting my free truffle-of-the-month courtesy of my Godiva Rewards Club membership, I headed off to Ulta.

This Ulta is in same shopping area as the Best Buy and is a free-standing shop. The friend that I was with spotted the Butter London stand first. When I first opened the bottle, I thought the color looked a little darker than the pictures I saw. And for $15 a pop, it was little pricy for it not to be what I wanted. But I knew that if I didn’t purchase it now, I’d just think about it constantly until I got it. So I shelled out the cash, had a great conversation with the clerk about the company’s high-quality products and painted my finger nails last night.

And it was worth every penny. It goes on thick, dries quickly and the color is just perfect. It’s a dark, bright turquoise that honestly reminds of lululemon’s (another one of my favorite brands) surge. I know I’ve found my perfect color for summer, and I’ve had a small smile on my face since I put it on. So, can you really bottle happiness? I’d say yes. Sure, it’s a temporary jolt of happiness, but for $15, I can afford it.