Archives for February 2012

So what’s Clinique’s 3 Step Really Like?

It’s nothing like Pro Active or any of the drug store 3 step kits…

Yeah, you’ve heard it all before, probably from all kinds of people, including us – Beauty Advisors.

But what do we really think of Clinique’s 3 step? That’s the big question!

Let me share what I think, and how my skin feels. Bur, first of all, let me make it clear – I got my 3 step for FREE, I work for Clinique, so there you have it!

During my hiring process (trust me it was very long – took about a month) I was skin-typed by the Clinique counter manager, and ended up being Skin Type 2 – Dry/Combination – which basically means, I have dry cheeks and a T-zone. If you get skin-typed in a store, you will probably see one of those:

Or an iPad (we have one in downtown Minneapolis, it’s just been sent into repair, because it wasn’t charging!)

You can also skin-type yourself on Clinique’s website! That’s especially appealing to those, who don’t feel comfortable talking to a Beauty Advisor (but we are not as scary as you think!)

My 3 step came with a bar-soap, a purple clarifying lotion (2) and the dramatically different moisturizer without pump. I remember back in 2008 my friend Bri swore by Clinique’s bar soap and said that it really helped her skin clear out. Well, if I had a choice, I would’ve rather gone with liquid soap, but it is what it is. Now do Clinique’s products really have no fragrance? No, they do. The soap and the lotion aren’t as bad, because you wash the first one off, and the other one is absorbed by your skin. But the clarifying lotion smells like witch hazel (duh, it’s one of the ingredients, and menthol – also on the list). Oddly enough, clarifying lotion is my favorite product. I’ve been skipping this step for over 2 years now, and oh boy did it feel good coming back to it! It leaves my skin squeaky clean and if i give it a few moments, I can feel the cooling effects of menthol!

Now back to step 1 – the soap. It’s fine, really, it’s just the next time I am definitely getting the liquid soap! If your skin is combination, but tends to get very dry, I’d recommend trying the extra-mild liquid soap. I know people who’ve done it and love it! Another interesting thing I heard from the customers – substituting the soap with this foaming cleanser:

Heard that it works like a charm as well, though I personally wouldn’t recommend it for oily skin. I also know that a lot of people use this to remove their make-up!

Now last, but not least – the moisturizer (skin type 3 and 4 – you get the gel – less oily!). Yes, it does have the mineral oil in the ingredients. If you don’t know what it is, here is some quick info –

Most often, mineral oil is a liquid by-product of the distillation of petroleum to produce gasoline and other petroleum-based products from crude oil. A mineral oil in this sense is a transparent, colorless oil composed mainly of alkanes and cyclic paraffins, related to petroleum jelly (also known as “white petrolatum”). It has a density of around 0.8 g/cm3. Mineral oil is a substance of relatively low value, and it is produced in very large quantities. Mineral oil is available in light and heavy grades, and can often be found in drug stores.


Mineral oil is a common ingredient in baby lotions, cold creams, ointments and cosmetics. It is a lightweight inexpensive oil that is odorless and tasteless. It can be used on eyelashes to prevent brittleness and breaking and, in cold cream, is also used to remove creme make-up and temporary tattoos. One of the common concerns regarding the use of mineral oil is its presence on several lists of comedogenicsubstances. These lists of comedogenic substances were developed many years ago and are frequently quoted in the dermatological literature.

A study reported in the Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology (2005) found that the type of highly refined and purified mineral oil found in cosmetic and skincare products is noncomedogenic (does not clog pores).

So it’s not as bad as a lot of people make it sound! I use it and love it! I do wish it came with a pump though (it does, mine just didn’t 😉 )

And I do recommend that you try it! If you live in the Twin Citites area, come see me at the Clinique counter in downtown Macy’s, I’ll be more than willing to help you, sign you up for events and make-overs!



Shabby Chic and a Vintage Necklace

I know I promised a refashion to all of my lovely readers here on WordPress and on the Re-Fashion Co-op Blog on Blogpost. And here it is!

I had this Large Gap Body shirt for over 2 years, it was one of the things my girlfriend gave me, and no I was never that size, it was just that one particular shirt.

It’s inside out, and you can see that pocket on the front. Well the pocket and the length in general bugged me so much, that I chopped it all off! Pinned some vintage lace to the bottom – I used two different kinds – one for the front, one for the back:

 And here is what I ended up with!

 Here is another closer look at the trim:

 And the vintage necklace that I got from my Grandma:

 Can’t wait for spring now 🙂



Eleven Eleven, no we are not making a wish!

I was tagged by Lena from Coffee Cat in a post called Elevens:

This is how it goes…

  • You must post the rules
  • Post 11 fun facts about yourself
  • Answer the 11 questions that the tagger posted for you & then create 11 questions to ask the people you’ve tagged
  • Tag 11 people and link them in your post
  • Let them know you have tagged them.

Fun Facts about Zhenya:

1. I sometimes talk about myself in 3rd person 😉

2. I knew I was going to live in the US since I was 14.

3. I’ve been to the States 3 times (a total of 2 1/2 years) before actually moving here for good.

4. I love bacon.

5. Some day I might just become Jewish, yes, I do have those occasional thoughts.

6. My English grades in school were always better than my Russian ones, even though Russian is my first language.

7. I can knit, crochet, cross-stitch, sew and make beads bracelets (no bragging here, just listing the facts)

8. Up until 9th grade I sucked in gym class, and then something happened and I got on the track team in High School, and later in college as well.

9. I have a Masters Degree in Cultural Studies, my senior thesis was about Russian-American inter cultural communications.

10. There was a period in my life when I did nothing but paint, I seriously thought of becoming an artist.

11. I have seen Keanu Reeves, Alec Baldwin, Kramer from Seinfeld, Charlotte and Miranda from Sex in the City, while living in Manhattan.

And here are my answers to Lena’s questions:

1. What is the biggest lesson your mother taught you?
The importance of saving money, because growing up we had very little.
2. If you had a chance to go on a date with one celebrity, who would you choose? Why?
Nicholas Cage, don’t ask me why 🙂
3. What is missing in your life right now?
Nothing really, ever since I got married, it’s been wonderful!
4. What is your guilty pleasure?
Brownies and White Chocolate M&M’s
5. What are your favorite stores to shop?
Thrift stores (Salvation Army, Goodwill), TJ Maxx and Marshalls, Opitz
6. You have a free evening at home; what would you do?
Chores (boring I know, but I’ve been working 6 days a week lately, so I really don’t have time to do them); if it’s not the chores – then watching TV with my hubby!
7. Why do you blog?
Because I can NOT to, I have been blogging since I was 19 or 20, and I believe I have a lot to say. I will admit that sometimes I have the celebrity syndrome, when I think I am extremely popular, but almost 100,000 views on my blog is really impressive, don’t you think?
8. What is/are your talent/s?
I am bilingual 🙂 That’s a talent alright. I also think I am a very talented interpreter.
9. If someone offered to pay for you next vacation, where would you go and why?
Colorado, because someone did agree to pay for my next vacation 🙂 And Colorado is simply awesome!
10. What makes you stand out in a crowd?
Usually my outfit, and my confidence (yeah the celebrity syndrome kicking in again)
11. What is your drink of choice at Starbucks?
I hate Starbucks, but if I absolutely had to get something from there, I would go with a soy based iced frappucino 🙂
Now my questions and the list of people who will have to answer them 🙂
1. If you had to be named after a city, state, or country (etc), which would you want it to be?
2. What did you do for your latest birthday?
3. What is your favorite commercial?
4. Have you ever been in a food fight? Where and when? And who started it?
5. Have you ever sold/donated your blood? If you haven’t do you want to?
6. Which cartoon character do you resemble the most?
7. What do you think Victoria’s secret is?
8. You can select one person from history and have them truthfully answer one question, who would you select and what is the question?
9. If you join the circus, what would you perform?
10. Have you ever eaten a crayon, or glue? Or what strange thing have you eaten?
11. What is the strangest name someone has introduced themselves as to you? What is their real name?
The next ELEVEN are:
Megan (duh!) – Mr. C & Me 
Lisa – Joliluja 
Anuschka – Into Mind 
Adriann – Madame Saslow
Have fun everyone 🙂

I’ve been welcomed to the Refashion Co-op

I am sure you’ve noticed a new “Refashion Co-op” badge on my blog – it’s on the right side, if you scroll down a little 🙂 Well a couple weeks ago I asked to be added to the other refashionistas, and be able to post on the Co-op’s blog. I was more than extatic to get the email with the welcome to post there. No, I am not cheating on WordPress with Blogger, I am simply joining a community of people who are more or less like me in their love and passion for refashion!

I am yet to post a project on there, but so far I’ve posted an intro and some pictures of my previous refashions!

I promise I will have a DIY/refashion for all of you guys soon, hopefully by the end of this week (it’s just I’ve been working a lot A LOT!)

Meanwhile check out my first post on the Refashion Co-op and don’t forget to bookmark that page!



Watch Watching

So I want to get a new watch, I can’t wait to get it, there are other priorities though, so it’s probably going to be a few more weeks till I actually go and splurge. But this is what I’ve been look at so far:

As you can probably tell I am debating between Michael Kors and Marc Jacobs. Which one do you like the best?

Also I am wearing my husband’s watch for the whole day today, it’s his way of training me into wearing a large chunky watch 🙂



Hey girl.

I couldn’t resist stealing this off of another blog here on WordPress! Like the post if you can relate!

Learning Leather

As you know I freecycle, when I lived in NYC I freecycled a lot, here in Minneapolis, not so much. Maybe because I don’t need all that lumber or coal that’s being offered 😉 But last weekend I got some leather, and it’s amazing! I don’t even know where to begin. You know the really soft kind, the one that you touch and go – Ahhhhhhh! Yup, that kind! So now all I need is a few DIY projects, to put my leather to work! Here are some things that caught my eye, now am I going to have time to do them all? Hopefully! How soon until I post a DIY leather project? Well, maybe as early as this Friday! So stay tuned! And here are my picks!

Leather Journal

 Bow Leather Cuff  

 Leather Necklace

 Leather Bracelets

 Leather Cuffs 

Leather Earrings   Leather Head Band

 Leather Belts

 Leather clutch 

All of these projects are also collected on one of my boards on Pinterest – so come check them out and get the instructions from there!



Through the Eyes of a Commoner…

An exhibition about Princess Diana is currently being hosted at the largest mall in the US – the Mall of America. Luckily for me, I live about 30 minutes away from there and have friends who agreed to go there with me.

Diana herself is a fascinating figure, I remember watching a movie about her last summer while I was still in Russia. It was extremely touching, though I never really cried. I didn’t cry when she died either, back in 1997 I was only 11 year old.

The whole exhibition is divided into several parts, and it’s so difficult to choose items that stood out to me the most, so I am not even going to try. All I am going to say is – you need to go see it for yourself – and make sure when you are there to look for the prayer book given to Diana by Mother Teresa, that item alone radiates so much energy, that it’ll give you chills!




Strange Shirt Refashion: The easiest no-sew Loop scarf tutorial

So I went freecycling today, and ended up getting a few things, including this odd number:

Yes, my friends, that’s a top! I found the seam, fortunately there was only one, folded it accordingly:

 And now off with it’s head, I mean top (hmmm, top of the top, that’s almost a philosophical question 😉 )

And what do we have now? An awesome loop scarf (don’t worry it’s not going to fray – i checked):

 I am also wearing my Hello Kitty pj’s but you can’t see them 🙂




Oh, Fairytales… Oh, Refashionistas…

Yesterday it has finally dawned on me – Cinderella was the first fairy tale re-fashionista! Of course with the help of her animal friends. And even though her dress ended up ruined,

the tradition of refashioning carries on! Here are my favorite re-fashionistas out there! Hope they inspire you just as much!

from Columbia, SC

 Erica from


 Cotton and Curls

Provo, Utah

Also check out her list of refashionistas! It’s amazingly useful!

And of course the Refashion Co-op 

Check out their website for useful links and numerous daily posts 🙂

Who is your favorite refashionista?