August 15, 2011

Mission: Shopping in the United States. Help required.

Hello lovelies,

Oooh... I'm so excited! As I'm typing this post out, I can already count the days before I pack and fly off to the US of A!

A trip to makeup mecca of the world (in my humble opinion). Finally! (Can you tell I'm excited?)

Anyhoo, I know loads of you ladies reading our blog are from the US, or have been there, and here's where I need some help.

I'll be flying in to New York, and spending a few days there before flying to Seattle and making a road-trip down to Los Angeles with the hubs, so we'll be pretty much all over the west coast too. So the question is... where do I shop?

I'm looking at makeup, shoes, some clothes, and maybe bags (Coach I'm looking at you).

I already have some places in mind - Sephora and all those lovely drugstores are already on my must-visit list. And a friend told me I have to pop by Woodbury Commons while I'm in New York.

Anywhere else that's good for shopping? Any tips?

Also... while we're at it, any food places you girls have to recommend? Anywhere that's a must-see?

Help me out here will you, lovelies?

PS: As I'll be flying off later this week, I'll be taking a short break while on vacay while Kahani will be holding down the fort. See you ladies when I'm back!


Tine said...

If you're going to be on the West coast and want to buy Coach, then definitely check out Gilleroy Premium Outlets. You can get gorgeous Coach bags there (not the canvas ones, but I'm talking about full leather babies) for less than a hundo :P Plus there are other factory outlets there like Kenneth Cole, Bath and Body Works, etc.

Makeup, no need to say, hello Sephora. Oh, and if you're going to drop by Bloomingdales, Saks or Nordstrom, get Tom Ford makeup. It will blow your mind and think Chanel is meh :P

Have a safe and fun trip, darls!

Askmewhats said...

Aaww I can seriously sense your excitement! I can't seem to give you any advise as I haven't been there! :) Have fun! I know you will! Have a safe trip!

ksuan said...

Hey there Syen :)

Bed Bath and Beyond has lots of drugstore brands, often cheaper than at other pharmacies like CVS :) Check out Almay (poor-girl's version of Clinique), and the stunning array of Revlon and Maybelline products if you can!

Also, check out Philosophy's full range at Sephora. Love love love.

And of course, Benefit, Clinique and Bobbi Brown are a lot more affordable over there, esp. given the fledgling USD at the moment so do capitalise while you can :D

Have a wonderful time :)

Sarah Kelman said...

I live in California (LA for a while, now in the SF bay area) and have plenty of recommendations!

I hear lots of good things about an outlet store called the Cosmetics Company Outlet (US locations: The store sells genuine department store items (usually from the Estee Lauder family, think MAC, Origins, Bobbi Brown, E.L., etc.) for quite a bit cheaper than regular retail because they are slightly "past season." You can even find some LE items there if you have the patience.

If you're driving through CA, I recommend stopping at either the outlets at Cabazon or Gilroy for tons of apparel and accessory shopping. You can Google either of these outlet malls to get a list of stores there.

Also, just for the true "California shopping" experience, I recommend swinging through South Coast Plaza in Costa Mesa (Orange County) -- not cheap but they have every store in the WORLD there; or also try the Third Street Promenade in Santa Monica (LA - Beach area). I used to work at a clothing store called Anthropologie on the promenade and it was hugely popular with foreign travelers. Check out the website if anything tickles your fancy. :) Not cheap, but gorgeous stuff there.

Another great place for bargains is TJ Maxx, a store that sells "past season" clothes, shoes, bags, bath/body products, etc. for quite cheap. My favorite TJ Maxx store is also in Santa Monica, check out the review on Yelp here:

In general, I find that Yelp is a great website to use to find places to eat, shop, etc. in the US and in California in particular. I always find good restaurants, cafes, and stores by using the website, and there is a lot of useful information in the reviews (like maps, hours, cash only info, etc.).

Have an amazing trip! I just started reading your blog since I am temporarily in Malaysia for the summer, but I've already read about and found some great products to try while I'm here. :)

april said...

Yes! You should spend a full day at Woodbury Commons! You can sign up now and get VIP vouchers sent to your email for you to print, and get the discount booklet too when you get to Woodbury Commons' customer service centre, so that you can get the best discounts at the outlets when you are there. You can see the village map online, and you should plan how you would want to navigate the outlets there. Be strategic, you will find that you do not have much time! So many shops to look at!

Other shopping places - Macy's (the biggest shopping centre in the world), Bloomingdale's..the big famous shopping malls..You can swing by Garment District and SoHo, and you should go 5th Avenue only during the day, shops close at 8pm usually if I remember right.

Have fun! Unfortunately I don't have much to say about makeup because Sephora is kind of everywhere and everyone should get the Estee Lauder brands (MAC, Clinque, Estee Lauder, Bobbi Brown) while they can in US or at the airports for duty free. Duane Reade, a drugstore chain like our Watsons and Guardians, is really common in Manhattan, but there are few, if not, no testers.

I remember I had the best food and coffee along Wall Street, of all places. Food isn't cheap nor good in Manhattan in general. If you are a coffee lover, then I have to warn you that coffee in NYC is generally crap unless it comes from a dedicated cafe, or the Starbucks chain. Wall St had this guy in a street van who serves relatively cheap and good espressos. The couple who sells takeaway grilled kebabs and rice there always had a queue during the day. If you see locals waiting along the street for their kebabs, you know that street van has good stuff. I hope they are still there!

april said...

Oh yes, in Manhattan, you have to see Museum of Modern Art, Guggenheim, American Museum of Natural History (see the dinosaur fossils, one of which is 5 storeys high!), walk along Wall Street (and don't get distracted by hordes of tourists from S Korea or China), take a stroll along Brooklyn Bridge, catch a musical at Broadway (absolute must! I watched Wicked, it was good!). Central Park is another must too, it is very very lovely. You can take a hop-on hop-off bus, to see the difference in the neighbourhoods. Or just take a public bus for that.

If you are a John Lennon fan, you can go West 72nd St The Dakota where Lennon was shot, and across the road is an entrance to Central Park which is also the nearest entrance to the Strawberry Fields tribute to John Lennon. There's a Liverpool FC makeshift stall there, which I think is an eyesore and the vendor is being ridiculous. Haha. Have great fun in Manhattan!

PearlyButterfly said...

There is an outlet located at Seattle as well. Go check out Ulta, Target, Wall-mart,Wallgreens, CCO at the Outlet, Bath & Body Works, Charlotte Russe (nice shoes..You will go crazy shopping in the US.. I'm jealous!! Have fun dear!!

Syen said...

Hello ladies!

Sorry for the uber late reply, but thanks so much for all the feedback! I'm already here in the States, and I'm definitely having a blast! =D

Thank youuu!