The scent of school spirit: Masik Collegiate fragrances



Got a graduation to attend and want a gift idea? Or how about the birthday of a friend who is very passionate about his alma mater? If you – or anyone you know – loves fragrances and those wonderful halcyon college days, then you need to check out Masik Collegiate Fragrances.

Creator Katie Masik traveled to different college campuses and interviewed students regarding fragrance preferences. Then she considered school colors, the style of the campus, flowers, trees, and location to create a unique scent for each school. Masik currently has scents for 19 different colleges, including Alabama, Georgia, Kentucky, North Carolina, Mississippi, Florida State, Penn State, and Texas A & M. As a high school counselor, I think it’s just the coolest fragrance line ever.

Masik Collegiate Fragrances

Masik Collegiate Fragrances

Masik sent two fragrances to test:  Florida State University for women and Penn State University Cologne for men. Both are 1.7 oz. bottles and run $39.50. The fragrances don’t smell of beer and herbs (if you know what I mean); these are wonderfully sophisticated yet youthful scents that really do make you think of carefree days and nights. The bottles are beautiful, all glass and class.

Florida State

Florida State University for her

Florida State - for her

Florida State – for her

Florida State University, home of the Seminoles, is a lovely fresh fragrance. This is a girly-girl scent with lots of fruity notes like Pear, Pomegranate and Juicy Nectarine. Middle notes are fresh and they include Lush Frangipani, Pink Peony, Heady Jasmine. The base notes are warm and just slightly naughty with Cashmere Woods, Golden Amber, and Cream of Coconut. This is a wonderful fragrance for a feminine girl who is always up for some fun.

Penn State

Penn State University for him

Penn State - for him

Penn State University – for him

Penn State University for men is a very masculine, stylish cologne. Top notes are fresh and include Italian bergamot, Juniper Berry, and Chilled Gimlet Accord. The middle note is cool, with a combination of blue cypress and cracked pepper vapor, plus Violet Leaf, Clary Sage, and French Lavender. The base notes end warm with Black Amber and Indonesian Patchouli. This is the scent of a man who knows exactly where he is going in life.

Masik has some great contests coming up so you can win a fragrance for yourself.  Their Fantastic U Photo Contest is going live on April 7th at 1pm.  The contest deadline is April 23rd.   Here are the specifics:

Facebook:  FANTASTIC U PHOTO CONTEST! Want to win $100 worth of free products? Here’s how:
1. LIKE them on FB (Masik FB link)
2. POST or SEND ( Masik a photo that captures fanatical
school spirit at YOUR school.
3. Photos with the most LIKES and COMMENTS will win $100 WORTH OF
4. Enter AS MANY PHOTOS as you LIKE!  The more, the better!
5. Contest ends April 23.  LIKE, COMMENT and SHARE with your friends!

For more information and a full list of universities check out:

Show some school spirit and take a look at these fabulous fragrances!  - Lisa

*sent for editorial consideration

Perfect for Valentine’s Day: Lisa Hoffman Kerala Ashok Garden Bracelet

Fragrance is an excellent Valentine’s Day gift. Jewelry is an excellent Valentine’s Day gift.  So Lisa Hoffman’s fragrance jewelry, her ingenious combination of the two, is the perfect gift. Lisa Hoffman sent the Kerala Ashok Garden Bracelet ($75) and it is really, truly stunning. Not only is it seriously practical (your jewelry and fragrance all in one!), it is gorgeous.

Lisa Hoffman Kerala Ashok Bracelet

Lisa’s fragrance jewelry was inspired by the Victorian Era, when showing your diamonds and jewelry was considered to be in bad taste. Jewelers made ‘fronts’ that covered the jewels for elegant woman as they traveled to parties and concerts. Lisa’s earrings, pendants, and bracelets have a charm similar to those ‘fronts’ that encases small fragranced wooden beads. The wooden beads slowly release the scent as they are exposed to air for a subtle delivery of fragrance.

Lisa Hoffman Kerala Ashok Garden Bracelet

Lisa Hoffman Kerala Ashok Garden Bracelet

The wooden beads retain their scent for a long time and have a great ‘throw’. For her Kerala Ashok Garden Bracelet, Lisa redesigned the fragrance charm to hold even more beads for more fragrance power. The bracelet and beads arrive nicely packaged in a pretty mesh bag. You can also buy refill jars of the fragrance beads for $20 so you never run out of fragrance and can put different scents into the jewelry if you’d like.

Kerala Ashok Bracelet fragrance beads

Kerala Ashok Garden Bracelet fragrance beads

Kerala Ashok Garden Bracelet fragrance bead holder

Kerala Ashok Garden Bracelet fragrance charm

The Kerala Ashok Garden Bracelet is a striking bracelet that celebrates both the strength and the softness of femininity. The fragrance is a beautiful floral combination of Ashok blossom, Deep Violet, Ripe Pear, Velvety Apricot, and Sheer Jasmine. The silver fragrance charm perfectly complements the lovely vintage purple glass beads. The fragrance charm opens up, and you put a few of the wood beads inside then snap closed. As you move your arm, the fragrance wafts about you in a beautifully subtle way.

love the beautiful purple beads

love the beautiful purple vintage glass beads

The perfect Valentine's Day gift:  Lisa Hoffman Kerala Ashok Garden Bracelet

The perfect Valentine’s Day gift: Lisa Hoffman Kerala Ashok Garden Bracelet

The bracelet is so pretty, Lisa says it “acts as a constant reminder to inhale bliss and exhale peace.” What a beautiful message for a day that celebrates love!

While all of her jewelry is amazing, I think the Kerala Ashok Garden Bracelet  is simply perfect for Valentine’s Day. Head on over to the Lisa Hoffman Beauty website and check it out – which one do you think is the perfect V Day gift?  - Lisa

*pr sample

Looking for last minute presents? Three great BCA holiday gift ideas

No, it’s not your imagination. The holidays are coming up faster than ever – there are actually six less shopping days between Thanksgiving and Christmas this year! If you are looking for last-minute gifts, consider gifts that give back. Estee Lauder sent the BIZ several fantastic gift items that are some of the most popular products from these EL lines.  These Pink Ribbon items support The BCA Campaign’s mission to defeat breast cancer through education and medical research.


Give gifts that give back with BCA Pink Ribbon products

Here are three fantastic products that give back to The Breast Cancer Research Foundation ® (BCRF):


Darphin Silky Moisturizing Lotion


Darphin Silky Moisturizing Lotion swatch

For a difficult to buy for aunt or mom, consider DARPHIN Silky Moisturizing Lotion Essential Body Beauty, a gift that any woman would love. It’s a wonderfully silky lotion that has Hydra StructureTM technology, which ‘harnesses the skin’s natural moisturizing ability, providing immediate and long-lasting hydration to help recapture the body’s baby soft skin.’ This lotion has elegant ingredients including Saltwort, French Lavender and Peach Leaf extracts, which do three things:  hydrate the top layer of skin, replenish skin moisture at deeper levels, and provide a gentle exfoliation so skin is super smooth. This is $40, and Darphin donates $8.00 from every purchase to The Breast Cancer Research Foundation®.


Smashbox Photo Finish Foundation Primer

If you need something for a close girlfriend or for a Secret Santa exchange, check out the Pink Ribbon SMASHBOX: Photo Finish Foundation Primer ($36.00; $5.00 to BCRF). This awesome primer works for every skin type, resulting in a flawless canvas for makeup. I adore the Pink Ribbon packaging and I also love what it does for skin. It fills in those fine lines and pores so skin looks younger and makeup looks better and lasts longer. Smashbox donates $5.00 from the purchase price to The Breast Cancer Research Foundation®. You can find this exclusively at ULTA Stores, and at


Estee Lauder Dream Solid Perfume Compact


Dream Solid Perfume Compact in Pleasures


Estee Lauder Breast Cancer Awareness 2013 Dream Solid Perfume Compact in Pleasures

Wow this is just gorgeous. I am talking about the Evelyn Lauder Dream Collection item, Evelyn Lauder Dream Solid Perfume Compact($49.50; 100% to BCRF). The stunning Pink Ribbon design takes my breath away and inside is the iconic Pleasures fragrance. You can see the inside of the compact is inscribed, “Estée Lauder Breast Cancer Awareness 2013.” I wore this fragrance exclusively for years and years and having it again brought back so many memories. The design and the scent, combined with the fact that Estee Lauder gives 100% of the retail price to The Breast Cancer Research Foundation®, completely wowed me. Absolutely fantastic.

If your shopping isn’t finished yet, I really hope you will consider these gift ideas. The products are amazing and how wonderful to give a gift that also supports such a great cause.  Happy holidays everyone!  - Lisa

*pr samples

Soap and Paper Solid Perfume in Midnight and Orange Blossom

Long, lazy afternoons and sultry summer evenings are wonderful – but usually it’s so warm out that the last thing I want is to be smothered in a cloud of fragrance. So I absolutely adore the Solid Perfumes ($18) from Soap and Paper, one of my favorite retro lines. There are 18 different scents from which to choose and they recently sent two of them to me to try. I am happy to report that they are both fabulous for hot and sticky weather.

Inside Soap and Paper Solid Perfume

Inside Soap and Paper Solid Perfume

The Soap and Paper Solid Perfume is made from jojoba, beeswax, and fragrance and comes in a beautiful ½ ounce tin that is just as gorgeous as the scent inside. Just swipe some on a finger and place behind ears, inside wrists, and behind knees to smell fantastic without knocking anyone else over with too strong of a scent. You can even use this as a pomade for your hair, which smooths flyaways and perfumes your locks at the same time.

Midnight Solid Perfume

Midnight Solid Perfume

The Midnight Solid Perfume has notes of jasmine, tuberose, and citrus. I smell the jasmine more than anything, with just a tiny hint of grape jam once it dries down – which makes this a perfect summer scent for me. It is sweet, but not too sweet – it really smells divine.

Orange Blossom Solid Perfume

Orange Blossom Solid Perfume

The Orange Blossom scent is beyond gorgeous. This smells just like orange blossom with a woodsy note once it dries down.  If you love orange blossoms, this is the solid perfume for you.

all the info

all the info

There are so many other intriguing scents from which to choose, like Vanilla Fleur, Fig, and Amber Absolute.  I know is there a perfect fragrance for you and these beautiful tins are fantastic for travel or for carrying in your purse. Be sure to stop at Anthropologie or visit Soap and Paper online to check out these fabulous fragrance finds.  – Lisa

*pr samples

Need a graduation gift? Try Mont Bleu or Prada

Ok, so these aren’t great gift ideas for a boy who is graduating – if you have one of those, get him a gift card.  If you are shopping for a girl graduate, here are some excellent ideas for gifts Mont Bleu and Prada sent to the BIZ that she will love.

hair clips

Swarovski crystal hair pins

The Swarovski Hairpins from Mont Bleu are beautiful and so inexpensive –   only $15.57!  (This is a Czech store that ships internationally, just choose your preferred currency when you visit the website.)

Wearing my Swarovsky Hair Pins

Wearing my Swarovski Hair Pins

The crystals in these hair pins are Swarovski, the Austrian manufacturer of crystals.  The crystals come in quite a few different colors, each one prettier than the next.

close up

close up

another look

another look

The hair pins are just tight enough to hold hair in place without being uncomfortable. I love them. Another plus – they come in a perfect black gift box.


Shamballa  Light Gold Pearl Bracelet

Another great choice from Mont Bleu are the Shamballa Bracelets ($24.66).  As someone who works on both a high school and a college campus, I can tell you these are all the rage and your girl graduate will be thrilled. Every single bracelet is totally unique. They are made with waxed cord that is tied using macramé techniques. The braids hold stones, pearls, or beads and you can choose from several different sizes.


Shamballa Rose Peach Pearl Bracelet

Different color possibilities include pastels, neon, grey, black, and white. They really are gorgeous, and again, so affordable!


Prada Candy Gift Set

Or you could go in a completely different direction and thrill your girl graduate with a little bit of Prada. Specifically, the Prada Candy Gift Set ($114). Look at how chic and fun the packaging is!



This set just came out in April, and it includes Candy Eau de Parfum (2.7oz.), Candy Lotion (2.5oz.) and a roll-on Eau de Parfum (.34oz.).


Candy Eau de Parfum

The fragrance is beautiful. It’s a young scent, but not too young, like bubblegum young. This smells of musk and caramel, which adds up to delicious. It’s fresh and fun, and young women love this.


roll-on Eau de Parfum

There’s a roll perfume perfect for a purse or backpack.


Candy Lotion

And the lotion smells fantastic, it’s a slightly lighter scent than the perfume. It moisturizes beautifully and of course the packaging is total cuteness.

Since you are in for all those graduation ceremonies and open houses this month, you might as well get in some fun shopping too  - and maybe grab something for yourself while you are at it. This year, save the gift cards for the boys and give the girls something fun! – Lisa

*pr samples

Lavanila Vanilla Coconut Forever Fragrance Oil and Roller Ball


foreverfragranceoilvcLaVanila Vanilla Coconut gets my vote as the PERFECT summer fragrance. I wear it in the fall as I long for those hot summer days, I wear it in the winter when I want to transport myself to the beach, I wear it in spring in anticipation of a beautiful summer, and I wear it in the summer because it’s perfect! I waxed poetic about this scent when LaVanila first sent the BIZ products to try, you can read that review HERE.

LaVanila describes the fragrance as, “Paradise Found.  A rich, tropical blend of Young Coconut, exotic Tahitian Tiare Flower, and pure Madagascar vanilla bean steeped in the warmth of sweet almond oil.” I find it to be the perfect blend of coconut, gardenia, and vanilla.


LaVanila Vanilla Coconut Forever Fragrance Oil

Today I am going to tell about my two favorite ways of wearing this amazing scent. Forget sprays and spritzes…let’s go roller ball!!


Forever Fragrance Oil

The Forever Fragrance Oil ($25) version of this scent is a blend of essential oils and sweet almond oil. There isn’t any alcohol, so the fragrance truly lasts all day. It’s a terrific way to wear the Vanilla Coconut scent and it also comes in Vanilla Grapefruit and Pure Vanilla.


The Healthy Roller-Ball

The Healthy Roller-Ball ($19) is another option I adore for my beloved Vanilla Coconut scent. This version is all natural and organic, there are no chemicals inside.

Roller-Ball roller!

Roller-Ball roller!

I carry this in my purse at all times. It’s also a great option for travel. Plus, it comes in seven different fragrances:  Fresh Vanilla Lemon, Vanilla Lavender, Vanilla Coconut, Pure Vanilla, Vanilla Grapefruit, Vanilla Blackberry, and Vanilla Passion Fruit.

LaVanila Roller-Ball Set

LaVanila Roller-Ball Set

For the true vanilla lover, there’s even a beautiful Deluxe Mini Roller-Ball set for $34 that includes Pure Vanilla, Vanilla Coconut, Vanilla Grapefruit, and Vanilla Lavender.

You can order these online, or check them out at your local Sephora. If you love vanilla scents, and you want organic fragrances that won’t irritate your skin, LaVanila is more than worth a look (or a sniff!).  - Lisa

* pr samples

Mother’s Day Giveaway: Faith Hill SOUL2SOUL Vintage and Celine Dion Sensational

How about a giveaway in celebration of Mother’s Day? Whether you are a mom to ten kids, four cats, or a pet rock we know you take care of someone. So we celebrate YOU! Here is your chance to win one of these two great prizes:

Faith Hill Vintage

Faith Hill Vintage


SOUL2SOUL Vintage Faith Hill ($24.50): For the traditionally sophisticated mom, surprise her with an uplifting fragrance like Faith’s SOUL2SOUL Vintage. This feminine scent is bursting with fresh juicy Pear, blended with notes of Passion Flower and Sparkling Plum for a fresh, fruity effervescence. SOUL2SOUL vintage is the perfect gift this Mother’s Day containing a romantic floral heart of Peony Petals, Geranium Egypt, and creamy Gardenia Petals plus the unmistakable sensuality of Oak and Cedarwood.   

Available: Mass retailers and drugstores nationwide

Celine Dion Sensational

Celine Dion Sensational


Sensational by Celine Dion ($27) : If your mom’s a pillar of strength, let her know how much you admire her with Celine Dion’s Sensational fragrance. The dynamic fragrance opens with sparkling icy Pear notes layered over luscious Plum and crisp, juicy Apple.  These tantalizing fruity facets evolve into a medley of vibrant florals like brilliant mimosa, intoxicating Jasmine, Luminous Freesia, and sweet Orris.

Available: Mass retailers and drugstores nationwide

What are you waiting for? Entering is easy, so do it now! We will have one winner for each of these fragrances. In the comments please mention which one you’d prefer (that will be one of the entries). When Rafflecopter picks a name we’ll check to see which fragrance that winner requested, then we’ll do the same for the second fragrance. This is just open for one week so that the winners will be able to tell their mom, their MIL, their grandmother or even themselves that a gift is coming!! US only through 5/11/13.

*prizes are donated and being sent by the fragrance company’s representative.

a Rafflecopter giveaway