Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Off Like a Prom Dress

A few weeks ago, I noticed something strange. On a trip to the mall (shopping, not National) there were younger girls three deep at every makeup counter. It was like the Front Page on the first happy hour of intern season.

My suspicions were confirmed when I saw this entry by Meg over at Faking Good's Prom Season.

Inspired by my own upcoming 10 year high school reunion, I became totally nostalgic for the bastion of American americana that is the high school prom. Mostly mine was so strange.

Let me set the scene.

I went to a private high school in New York. Our football team was embarrassingly bad. Most of our school sponsored events occured at the Bottom Line, not the school gymnasium.

Like a good child of the 90's, I diligently watched "Saved by the Bell" and "Beverly Hills, 90210," read the prom issues of both Seventeen and YM, and longed for that typical prom experience. Shopping for months for an expensive dress, hair in an updo, perfect makeup, disco ball on the cieling of a hotel ballroom, pancakes and coffee at our local diner hangout where the owner knows all of our names and which one of us will later buy in as a partner and turn part of it into a nightclub which will be the setting for many drug stings, breakups and a concert venue for so many crappy bands.

But, I digress.

That was not me.

I bought the first dress I tried on. (It was long...but as a vertically challenged person, I firmly believe in short for formal occaisons. I would wear a short dress to my wedding if my mother hadn't given me The Look of Death when I suggested that.)

I had my my hair done in an updo. Then I cried my eyes out the whole ride home because my hair was crunchy, stinky smelling and a thousand pins were poking me. I promptly washed the whole thing out and blew my hair out straight.

I did all my friends' makeup, mostly consisting of silver eyeshadow, because that's what I wore. We were far from perfect.

I don't remember a disco ball...

In short, not the prom I dreamed about (Zack Morris didn't show up and sweep me off my feet or anything), not even a particularly memorable evening.

But I do remember a girl in my class throwing up on her $3000 Bergdorf Goodman dress as soon as she got to the party!

That was totally the highlight.

Happy Prom Season!

Also, the whole experience taught me many valuable lessons about getting ready for formal functions, of which I have one coming up in a few weeks (it always falls in the middle of the NBA Finals) so check out my routine. I got tired just reading it.

Back to Life, Back to Reality

Ahhh, back in the warmth.

Seriously, who knew that Southern California could get so blisteringly cold in May? Apparently anyone who reads the weather report and doesn't think that it is simply lying.

Even though it got down to the frigid mid 60s during the day, it was quite a weekend out in LA.

I have no inside dirt on the Lohan Curbside Terry Stop, but I did run into David Hasslehoff browsing the men's department at the Barney's Co-Op in The Grove. I managed to totally OD on avocado and Iced Blendeds and managed to get a sunburn within an hour of arriving.

Productive, no?

On the beauty front, I took a spin around Fred Segal in Santa Monica to quell my beauty jones. While the draconian TSA rules prevented me from picking up too many fun toys, my friend snagged the 100% Pure Organic Dark Chocolate Mocha Body Cream for her mom who was on a quest for chocolate scented body lotion. I recommended checking it out after my positive experiences with the Strawberry Body Scrub from the same line. The lotion is very chocolately smelling, but not overpowering or mercifully lacks the candy sweet smell that so many lotions have these days.

While it was being wrapped up, I became intrigued by the Too Faced Lash Injection Mascara sitting idly at the counter. It looked impressively dark and sooty (that's how I like it!) and the brush looked like it could really give good lash for a night out in a dark club that serves degenerate underage starlets. Unfortunately, I walked away, remembering exactly how many mascaras currently line my dresser. But it did not go unnoticed that Sephora has a mini version available for purchase...

So...did anyone else have any fun beauty adventures over the holiday weekend? Can anyone give me the scoop on the Too Faced Mascara? And, does anyone know where I could get an Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf fix on the East Coast???

photos courtesy of and

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Ripped Off...and loving it.

There are lots of perks to working for the government.

The feeling you get knowing that someone twice your age has to suck up to you to gain access to your boss.

Savant-like knowledge of regulatory provisions and congressional districts by zip code.

Finding out confidential and sometimes even classified information, which no one else actually wants to know.

Hot ass ID badges.

However, earning the big bucks is not a perk I enjoy.

Don't believe me? Are you sitting there thinking, CapHillBarbie, you are so full of crap! No one would do your job and not get paid like a banshee! Oh yeah? Check out the salary of everyone on the Hill. Send money and care packages.

So, when I lust after certain high priced fashion items, I have two choices: (A) forgo rent and eat Top Ramen every day for lunch, or, (B) find a knock-off and work it like there is no tomorrow.

Thus was the case of The Chloe Flats:

On a trip around Bergdorf Goodman with my mom earlier this year, I spied a hot pair of Chloe flats for spring. They looked perfect for bumming around on the weekend, casual days at work in the summer, and would even work through fall! But when I took a gander at the price tag, my dreams of swanning around Dirksen in my cute shoes came to a screeching halt.

I still love you dearly, even though you are out of my price range.

So, I put them down (my birthday isn't until fall, so begging for an early present from my mother would have been fruitless) and tried my best to forget.

Until this weekend when I stopped into Steve Madden on Saturday (yup, that's right, I'm a masochist.) and found pair of flats almost exactly like the Chloes! The best part? About $400 less than the real deal. I snatched them up on the spot.

Let the swanning begin!

Another perk? Being able to provide a little technical assistance for this legislation.

Off to the Left Coast

That's right, boys and girls (who am I kidding? No men read this.) I am taking advantage of the Memorial Day recess and jetting off to Los Angeles.

As I've stated before, I love LA. Love it.

I love that everything come in a sugar-free variety, that everyone relishes that which is fake (even the frozen yogurt isn't really yogurt!), and that being proud of how you look (or how your car looks) doesn't lead people to believe that you are a Grade-A Moron.

Yup, that's right, I love it for exactly three days.

Then I want to scream, take public transportation, and talk about Chris Dodd's eyebrows with someone who knows who I'm talking about.

So, I'm about to run home, pack and get a few hours of rest before gearing up for my annual dose of sun, fun and of for beauty products!

I'll have a full report when I get back!

I may even get a tan...fake, of course.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

You Snooze, You Lose!!

Beauty products almost never go on sale, so make like a bunny and hop to the sale at tomorrow!

Here's the deal:

On Wednesday, May 23rd, everything purchased on will be 20% off.

They have an awesome lineup of brands, including Vincent Longo (no soulmate eyeshadow though...sniff), Red Flower, NARS, Paula Dorf and more.

Also, if you are ever squemish about purchasing makeup online becuase you are worried that when it arrives it will make you look like Gina Gershon in Ugly Betty, fear not. has a pretty sweet return policy too.

I'm thinking of using this opportunity to try out some Kevyn Aucoin products, or finally picking up the Monyette products that I've never been able to find in person...

What have you been wanting to try but putting it off?

Monday, May 21, 2007

Old Faithful

I am not a person who typically finishes a whole lot of beauty products.

I am far too fickle in my tastes, and therefore, most products turn clumpy or develop an off smell long before I hit the bottom of the case. But every once in a while I see the silver lining at the bottom of the eyeshadow and remember how much I love a certain product.

And then I find out that it is no longer available.


The product in question is the Vincent Longo single eyeshadow in Baby Love. I picked it up after reading a column in Allure magazine like a thousand years ago by the late great Kevyn Aucoin.

It's a shimmery taupe color, with just a hint of mauve and a gold-ish sparkle. I can sweep it on and be ready for anything. Seriously, it makes me look polished, but not like I'm wearing too much makeup. Add a little eyeliner or layer on a darker shade and I'm ready for evening. It never creases, and it's hard for me to feel like I've put too much on.

It's like my eyeshadow soulmate. Who went out for cigarettes in the middle of the night and never came home.

For some reason, the Vincent Longo of Sephora no longer carries the single eyeshadows, even though the company's website still has it available for purchase. I have been extremely remiss in my visits to Barney's and the Longo counter, so I don't know if they still carry them or if I should call the company and snatch up as many as I can.

Vincent Longo does this to me quite frequently. I once had to call the headquarters and cry on the phone to get the rep to sell me a bottle of foundation when they pulled it for reformulation. Actually, Longo products are usually the ones I actually finish....

So, scouts! Help me out...have you see this eyeshadow? Should I call the company and turn on the waterworks? Is there some sort of legislation we could get passed about requiring a comment period before discontinuing a cosmetic product?

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Singin' the Blues

Wow, there were so many cheesy and cliche titles I could have come up with for this post.

As previously mentioned about a gajillion times on my blog, I'm kind of a sucker for the Next Hot Thing.

My name is Capitol Hill Barbie, and I'm a trend whore.

All together now, "Hi Barbie."

Sometimes this pans out, other times, not so much. So when I recently hightailed it to Sephora to try out the latest rage, blue mascara, I was anticipating a minor disaster. More George Bush referring to the web as the "internets," less Britney exiting a car on a Saturday night.

I was surprised with the result that it looked kind of cool. I sampled Benefit BadGal Blue, which is apparently EXCLUSIVE to Sephora. I noticed that it made my eyes a little brighter and whiter. I layered it over the existing mascara, so the look was subtle, meaning that my fiance looked at me like I was an escapee from St. Elizabeth's when I asked him how it looks.

Whatever! He was wearing sandals with socks when I met him!

So I was pleasantly pleased with the results. However, I had a little sticker shock when I checked the price tag. So I scoured Sephora for some other options, and found that their house brand (which I've been hot and bothered about lately. seriously, it's like Wet n' Wild for the yippie set.) makes a few options like the Triple Action Mascara and the Mascara Fantastic Color for a much more reasonable cost.

While I liked the effects of the blue mascara, I considered carefully that it doesn't really fit into my (working in a ridonculously untrendy environment) lifestyle, and I passed it up. And then I think I bought my 30th pink lipgloss.

Hi, my name is Capitol Hill Barbie and I'm a lip gloss-a-holic.

Once more, and with feeling..."Hi, Barbie."

photo courtesy of

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Invasion of the Swedes!

I think I could really do pretty well in Sweden.

I'm blond, I'm pale, I have 85 Allen wrenches from Ikea, and I love Marimekko.

Love it.

So, when I was invited to the opening of the new Marimekko store in Silver Spring, I was so excited. Then I realized that I would be an indentured servant to my boss until the end of days.

But as luck would have it, fortune smiled upon me and I was able to go to the opening!

Let's just say I was a little embarrassed the next day as to amount of champagne consumed. Embarrased and reeling from a pounding headache.

However, I did get some insight before I went loopy.

Marimekko is an adorable label, which was trendy in the seventies, yet remains totally relevant today. The patterns are bright, sweet, and fresh. It could punch up the most boring Pottery Barn apartment. I actually have a wall hanging in the pattern on this handbag which certainly livens up my sandstone living space.

The store is bright and airy, and the best part is actually the baby clothes and the housewares. Seriously, if any of my friends move or pop out a kid, they are getting a present from here.

The stores are rapidly expanding, so there might be one coming to a corner near you. If not, check out the goods at and then when one does open, you can tell everyone you already knew about it.

P.S. With the opening of Marimekko and the existing American Apparel (LOVE love LoVe American Apparel t-shirts), Silver Spring has become a hot destination. There's even a Cakelove. Actually... that's how you know it's over, huh?

UPDATE: Okkkaaayyy...I'm a moron. Officially. Marimekko hails from FINLAND, not Sweden. But that's ok! I like Finland a lot too! Mmmm, vodka. I apologize for my stupidity.

They tell me I write a blog?

Ok. I have not fallen off the face of the Earth (although during my prep session yesterday I wish I could have) but I have extraordinarily lax about keeping up my blog.

But the forecast is looking sunny, and I hope to fill you in on the few bright spots in my life and store openings!!

Coming up, on Capitol Hill Barbie:

  • New stores! Coming to the US! Coming to DC! Cool stuff! How! Many! Exclamation! Points! Can! I! Use!?
  • A review of some of the oldie but goodies that have gotten me through the tough times when I lived far from a Sephora or was chained to a 1000 page bill (yes, Farm Bill. I'm looking at you.)
  • Some products that will help you pretend that you've seen the sun in the past three months.
  • A primer for newbies to the DC life, politics, and all the fashion conundrums that accompany life on the Hill, in government, or anywhere bureaucracy, short sleeved suits, power and copious amounts of alcohol collide.