Spring Rituals

Today is my first day of Spring. Finally, the sky is blue, the sun is shining, the birds are singing, and the flowers are blooming. After our Polar Vortex Winter, it feels like life is finally beginning anew.

I wrote earlier this year about the rhythm of the seasons, and once again I was reminded this morning, walking to and from SoulCycle, of how this natural cycle impacts my focus, and my activities.

Here are some of the ways I have begun to celebrate Spring, and how I will continue to.

  • I opened the windows in my house and let in fresh air. Simple, and glorious.
  • I cut 4 inches off my hair and I have never felt lighter. Thank you, Jason Snyder!
  • I cleaned out my closet, thanks to the inspiration of my dear friend Jennifer Mapp Bressan, who is constantly reminding the world that we need less clothing than we think we do.
  • I took a good look at my to-do list and got rid of two items that had been sitting on there since January; one task I (finally) completed, and one task I decided I was never going to complete and just deleted.
  • I switched my evening cream to the lighter Kantic Calming cream from what I use during the winter, our Kantic+ Intensely nourishing cream.
  • I had coffee in my yard, listening to the sounds of Spring, watching the sun rise over Georgetown, watching the world wake up.  
  • I incorporated abs in my exercise regimen, per the inspiration of my friend Anne who does 200 of them five times per week. This should be a year-round ritual (because summer bodies are made in the winter!), but for now, it will start as a Spring / Summer ritual.
  • I went to yoga. I don’t do yoga, but when my friend Kelly DiNardo, owner of Past Tense in DC, invited me. I figured at the very least it would help me get rid of the winter cobwebs in my body.
  • I finalized a new partnership for Alchimie Forever, which will yield its fruit a little bit later this season.
  • I still need to get my first Spring pedicure… I am hoping to make time this weekend to go to Mia Bella, my favorite nail place in New Orleans. 

How do you celebrate the first few days (weeks) of Spring?

BeautyView: Jennifer Mapp Bressan, Brand Manager, Cibu

They say what happens in Vegas, stays (or should stay!) in Vegas. My initial meeting with Jennifer Mapp Bressan, Cibu Brand Manager, is an exception to this wise rule. We met in Vegas, at Cosmoprof North America during the summer of 2007. We were at the same beauty panel, and realized we were neighbors – me in DC, her in Northern Virginia. The rest is history, as they say. Fast forward almost 7 years, Jenn and I have become fast friends, and while we continue to meet annually for a reunion cocktail in Vegas, we meet much more often in DC, to chat about the industry, beauty, hair and skin care tips, and more. I recently caught up with her for this interview…

AP: What city were you born in? JMB: Chicago, IL.

AP: What city to do you live in? JMB: Falls Church, VA.

AP: What is your middle name? JMB: Mapp.

AP: What is your astrological sign? JMB: Scorpio.

AP: What is something about you most people don’t know? JMB: I am more conservative than I seem.

AP: What is your most prized possession? JMB: My 2 year old wild child, AJ. I tried to think of a material answer and I couldn’t come up with anything. It is fruitless to prize any possession in the wake of a toddler.

AP: If you could have dinner with the person of your choice, who would it be? JMB: J Crew creative director Jenna Lyons.

AP: Describe your fashion style in three words maximum. JMB: Classic, quirky, accessorized.

AP: Do you wear a watch? If yes, what model? JMB: Not yet but our 5 year wedding anniversary is right around the corner. Tick tock, Matt. Tick tock.

AP: Diamonds or pearls? JMB: Diamonds.

AP: What is your #1 beauty secret? JMB: SPF 30+.

AP: What fragrance do you wear? JMB: Bond #9 New York, Nuits de Noho.

AP: Botox or not? JMB: Botox or bangs, depending on the haircut.

AP: Hair color: natural or not? JMB: All over Aveda color with balayage highlights by Chris Houser at Salon Cielo Connecticut Ave, naturally.

AP: What are your special diet tips, if any? JMB: At least one serving of olive oil and red wine, daily.

AP: What do you do for exercise? JMB: Dancing Mind Hot Yoga, Falls Church, VA.

AP: What are three things that you always have in your fridge? JMB: San Pellegrino, Fresh Crunch Pickles, seasonal produce.

AP: What is your cocktail of choice? JMB: Pinot Noir.

AP: What is your secret to work/life balance? JMB: Tenure. Over-communication. Yoga. 495 Hot Lanes.

AP: How many miles do you fly per year on average? JMB: Not nearly as many as I’d like.

AP: What are your three top tips for travel? JMB: Narrow it down to 3 pairs of shoes, metallic is a neutral; center your travel wardrobe around a versatile, printed wrap; Sephora VIB points = air friendly toiletries.

AP: 3 songs on your ipod right now. JMB: Pompeii, Bastille; Mas Que Nada, Sergio Mendes + Brasil 66; Shook Ones, Mob Deep.

AP: What book are you reading right now? JMB: Does a 2 month backlog of WWD count?

AP: Quote to live by. JMB: “Comparison is the thief of joy” –Teddy Roosevelt.

AP: What is your worst pet peeve? JMB: Passive aggression.

AP: What time do you usually wake up in the morning, and how many hours of sleep do you usually get? JMB:  7:15; 7 – 8 hours.

AP: What is your favorite thing about the beauty industry? JMB: Frivolity.

AP: Least favorite thing. JMB: Frivolity.

AP: Who is your mentor? JMB: Ann Ratner, co-founder of Ratner Companies, parent company of Hair Cuttery, Bubbles Hair Salons, Salon Cielo and Cibu.

AP: Words of advice for young women starting their careers today. JMB: Your time is valuable. Negotiate as solid a salary as you can earn early on, this is the launch pad for the rest of your career. Instagram wisely.