Living

Lifestyle news, features and reviews on Monsters and Critics. The latest from health and fitness, food and drink, fashion and more.

Cancer Treatment Radically Changing According to Leading Researcher

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Cancer will kill about 600,000 Americans by the end of this year. Cell growth is the secret of living, the source of our ability to build, adapt, repair ourselves; and cancer cells are rebels among our own cells that outrace the rest. Cancer is a disease that begins when a single cell, among all the trillions in a human body, begins to grow out of control. Lymphomas, leukemias, sarcomas all begin with that microscopic accident, a mutation in one cell. Curing cancer without harming the patient has long been a goal of medical researchers, but the curious mind and the […]

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Netflix ‘House of Cards’ is Back! We Have The Perfect Bourbon Cocktails For It

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  We are thrilled that the political drama House of Cards has launched Netflix’s expansion into original programming.This whip smart potboiler of power plays, dirty deeds and unbridled lust began two years ago, and was an immediate hit with viewers and my fellow TCA TV critics, giving Netflix the clout and the wherewithal to redefine “television.”The success of this series netted more fantastic efforts, “Lilyjhammer,” “Orange is the New Black” and even emboldened Amazon.com to create new and daring series, to their credit, “Transparent” has officially made gender transitioning a more mainstream topic.Season three debuted early Friday, and fans in […]

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Spring Beauty Surprises From Beth Bender Beauty, Merle Norman

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Spring is a time for re-birth, it’s the time to start fresh, you know, that whole spring cleaning thing everyone talks about. Out with the old and in with the new. That goes for boyfriend jeans, black nail polish, gladiator boots and last year’s dull make up.It’s time to get out of the make up rut and try something new. You must, I repeat, you must check out Beth Bender Beauty Girls’ Night Out Stencil Set. This will make even the most ham fisted among us idiot-proof when it comes to creating drama eyes for those special and not so […]

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Venin Royale Concentrated Neuropeptide Renewal Serum Uses Cobra Venom

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At a certain age, you will try anything to keep your skin looking youthful and dewy. It’s no secret that, over the years, I’ve spent thousands of dollars on Botox, Voluma, Juvaderm, Micro-Dermabrasion and any other injectable fighting off the inevitable visit to the plastic surgeon’s office and I look pretty damn good; my age… but not my age. Those Real Housewives could learn a thing or two from me! But with all this attention to looking young and tight, it doesn’t mean anything if my skin looks sad and grey.I recently found out about a skin serum from Venin […]

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Spring Fashion 2015: SPY Takes Us ‘Crosstown’ With Guaranteed Happiness

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Fashion Spotlight 2015: SPY Sunglasses have figured out how to boost your mood and make you look like a million bucks.SPY’s Crosstown Collection is the brand’s fashion-forward premium collection, handcrafted from acetate and mixed metals. It takes SPY’s beach-vibe to a more metropolitan setting. Some days you just can’t be bothered to apply a full face of makeup. Maybe you had a long night and your eyes are telling on you, screaming to the world that you had WAY too many drinkie-drinks. Or maybe you just haven’t made your next lash appointment!For Spring 2015, I fell for full Plum Camo […]

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The Napa Valley Experience: HALL Wines Reveals Slate Of Events For Novice To Wine Aficionado

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Travel Spotlight: A jewel found in Napa Valley, California, each of HALL’s state-of-the-art winemaking facilities and tasting rooms combine modern art and architecture matched with spectacular settings. Owned by Craig and Kathryn Walt Hall, its vineyard collection features five Certified Organic estates producing classic Bordeaux varietals. The Napa Valley Experience: HALL Wines Reveals Slate Of Events For Novice To Wine AficionadoHALL Wines has announced the launch of new experiences at both its St. Helena and Rutherford locations that appeal to a diverse group of visitors to the Napa Valley. From the novice wine drinker to the aficionado, modern art lovers to foodies, […]

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Lashing Out: Safe and Sexy Eyelash Extensions

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True confession time: I hate mascara and applying false eyelashes with the Duo glue and then worrying if all that junk is going to pop off at the worst possible time.  When I get dressed and need to look my best, I want my face to be finished, but not Kardashian spider-leg drag in the lash department either. The truth is, womens’ faces are greatly enhanced with a lush lash line.Look at poor Uma Thurman, who went out without mascara recently. She had the whole world thinking she did something weird to her face. She just forgot to put on […]

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Oregon Gourmet Artisans Create Cheesorizo, A Fantastic Vegetarian Alternative

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Eat This Not That: Meet Cheesorizo®, a vegetarian, all natural and GMO, gluten, grain, and soy free wunderkind that will have you swapping out red meat, textured soy protein and chicken in no time. This must-try find is from a naturally sustaining artisan dairy in Oregon, created by an entrepreneurial family who are vegetarian. This original meat-free cheese sausage tastes and cooks up just like meat sausage. It’s 100% addictive and you will have to order it direct if you live outside of Oregon – the links are provided below.Pholia Farm is an off-the-grid family farm in Rogue River, Oregon, […]

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Florida Bound: TCM Classic Cruise Returns To The High Seas November 2015

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Travel Notes: Florida bound? TCM Classic Cruise Returns To The High Seas November 1-6, 2015 The Disney Magic Will take movie lovers away on a luxury cruise!  Now in its fifth year, the TCM Classic Cruise has hosted special guests including Ernest Borgnine, Tippi Hedren, Eva Marie Saint, Debbie Reynolds, Mickey Rooney and Richard Dreyfuss. A highlight reel of past TCM Classic Cruise’s can be viewed hereTurner Classic Movies (TCM) will set sail on the high seas for a fifth time with the 2015 TCM Classic Cruise returning on November 1-6 aboard the Disney Magic, the Disney Cruise Line ship […]

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Oscar’s Fashionable The Muses of Laura Kay, Sketch Artist

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Oscar wasn’t the only thing shining at last night’s Academy Awards.Hollywood’s leading ladies pulled out all the stops when it came to the red carpet. Capturing the most glamorous looks of the night was Laura Kay, founder and artist of Diary Sketches, who re-created the best dressed…in sketch form! Sketching live throughout the broadcast, Kay freehand illustrated the most elegant ensembles, from Jennifer Lopez’s beaded blush Ellie Saab to Marion Cotillard Dior Haute Couture silk evening gown. Laura Kay’s website Diary Sketches is full of ultra-feminine illustrations. Plus her art can be purchased on her Etsy. Laura also does custom […]

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National Margarita Day: Los Angeles’ Best Tapatio Tequila Fueled Bar Crawl – Details

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Ola! Sunday is National Margarita Day, a time to celebrate the occasion and raise a salt-rimmed glass to toast the cocktail’s clarifying, crisp and sweet palate tease, especially in the snow bound areas of the country.The classic Mexican cocktail of tequila, lime juice and Cointreau or Triple Sec is marked every Feb. 22.  The drink’s creation dates to the late 1930s or early ’40s according to a story in Smithsonian Magazine: As with so many popular things, more than one person has claimed to have invented the margarita. One of the most prevalent stories is that Carlos “Danny” Herrera developed […]

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Oscar Fashion Buzz: Crystal Cult’s Bedazzling Shades For Red Carpet Glare

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Oscar Fashion spotlight: What would Cookie from Empire wear on the Oscar red carpet, sashaying up to that stick thin fashionista Giuliana Rancic? She’d be decked out in Crystal Cult’s screen goddess glasses that totally flipped us out when we got to see them!  When you need to make a statement, and shine like a Silver Screen Siren, look to The Crystal Cult.Crystal Cult’s chic sunglasses are presented in an array of flattering looks to compliment any shape of face, and are priced affordably.Shine like a Silver Screen siren this award season with The Crystal Cult’s Swarovski crystal embellished sunglasses, adorned […]

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Perfect Snow Antidote: February 22 Is National Margarita Day!

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Stop the presses and stop shoveling snow. Please go put on a Tommy Bahama shirt because I’m going to bust out some much needed cocktail news:Sunday, February 22nd is National Margarita Day! The margie is as diverse a cocktail as they come. To make the best – do NOT buy pre-made mixers please! They’re gross, high fructose corn syrup nightmares with fake flavor additives. When life hands you limes, you damn well better use them in a margarita recipe.We’re firing up the vintage, made in the USA Juice-O-Mat Juicer (circa 1950s or earlier, the only way to fly people, get […]

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Drink This Not That: Sia, For Ladies who Love Scotch, Plus Recipes!

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There are ladies who lunch and then there are ladies who scotch!Sia is a new scotch that was launched by a lady (gasp, and clutch the pearls)…. Carin Luna Ostaseski. But this was not a lady who grew up in the distillery ranks or the Appalachian back woods. Ostaseski had a career designing websites and digital products for some of today’s most recognized labels. However, like most trendsetters, she soon realized there was more out there and wanted to find her niche.After being convinced by friends to taste a scotch, (seriously, how much convincing was involved?) she saw that scotch […]

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Security Expert’s Ten Insider Tips To Stay Safe In Unsafe World

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The first time I met Louis Perry, he was overseeing a celebrity filled party and was all eyes on the VIP guests. Yet as official looking as he seemed, his presence also had this amazing chameleon quality; he was like any other guest. Perry was there to guard people and valuable art, and his team he was managing were also present yet unobtrusive as he was.That night, during a lull, I asked him some questions, as the whole “protection” side of celebrity is fascinating to me, and he did not disappoint. Perry fought his way out of the Brooklyn projects […]

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Hello Puppy Breath! ASPCA ‘Come To Their Rescue’ Campaign Begins

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Hello products, the creators of naturally friendly oral care, is on a mission to make the world a friendlier place. And while we don’t make oral care for pets,  some of their best friends happen to be furry and four-legged, and they want them to find happy homes.Hello is a brand of seriously friendly™ oral care products. The products are vegan, and contain no alcohol, artificial sweeteners, or dyes. Hello is never tested on animals, and all of the products are made in the USA. The line currently includes a range of toothpastes, mouthwashes, and breath sprays in delicious flavors […]

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Small Batches, Fresh Ingredients And Powerful Tools For Best Nut Butters

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If you search for nut butter recipes, technique and wisdom on the Internet, you’ll find a unifying thread of wisdom: All nut butters are not alike, some are more nutritious than others, and some are easier to process at home than others, but they all are fantastic vitamin, alpha-linolenic acid, an omega-3 fat, protein and mineral rich ways to eat healthily.  Downside? All “butters” are calorically dense so there’s a strategy to including in your diet daily (recommended for heart health) so your weight is stable. Nut butters usually were one of our first culinary loves as American children, showing […]

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Baby Needs New Shoes: Freshly Picked Moccasins

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    Fashion Spotlight:  There’s nothing cuter than baby shoes or the little feet that go inside them, and when you combine that with quality made in the USA craftsmanship, and one woman who has a clear vision of what makes sense for children’s fashion, you have a winner.American thrift and tenacity Meet Susan Petersen, Founder/Creator of Freshly Picked, a line of handmade clothing in the USA that took many attempts and six design prototypes before she struck pay-dirt with a very wearable and adorable pair of moccasins for babies.  Petersen started making baby moccasins in 2009 after becoming frustrated by […]

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Chinese Lunar New Year Chocolate Limited Editions From L.A. Burdick

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The Lunar New Year, a massive celebration in many Asian countries, is fast approaching. This year marks the Year of the Sheep (or Goat to some), which, according to the Lunar New Year calendar, will celebrate the charmer of the Chinese Zodiac group. People traditionally gift each other “lucky money” in red envelopes, as red symbolizes fire that drives away bad luck. The fireworks that shower the festivities are rooted in ancient custom and are meant to frighten evil spirits away. Celebrations around the world are already underway for the Chinese New Year, which begins next Thursday, Feb. 19 and […]

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Adidas Originals x Kanye West Fashion Show (Pictures)

A close up shoe detail from the adidas Originals x Kanye West YEEZY SEASON 1 fashion show during New York Fashion Week Fall 2015 at Skylight Clarkson Sq on February 12, 2015 in New York City. (Photo by Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for adidas)

We have added a set of pictures from the runway at the Adidas Originals x Kanye West YEEZY SEASON 1 fashion show during New York Fashion Week Fall 2015 at Skylight Clarkson Sq on February 12, 2015 in New York City. All photos by Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for adidas.

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February 2015 Best Beauty, Fragrance and Skincare Finds

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February 2015 Best Beauty and Fragrance Finds sees some cosmetic veterans and some newcomers who address skincare and beauty head to toe for both men and women.Monthly, Monsters and Critics shines a spotlight on the best of the newest beauty products that turned our heads and impressed. We don’t love everything. We send back professional samples of items that do not make the cut. These items listed below were wonderful and all were made without harming animals.  They are also made without Parabens, Sulfates and Phthalates. After wading through many professional samples submitted for review, this month’s top picks we […]

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Last Minute Valentine’s Day Greetings, Three Great Buys!

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Uh oh. It’s nearly here! Last Minute Valentine’s Day Greetings, Three Great Buys!Forgot to go to the store for Valentine’s Day?  Have no fear, here are some great greetings for your special someone.Valentine’s Day is here and for all you gents that are scrambling to find unique gifts rather than the usual chocolate and roses, M&C found some great E-cards that are unique and guaranteed to warm your loved ones heart!For the cost of only .99 cents, Musical Names offers a customized card of music and pictures for your sweetheart. Each letter of your significant other’s name is set to […]

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Review: Fragrant Indian Food With Kitchen Curry Master

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My very first encounter with Indian food, or more pointedly Indian spice, was from my well-intentioned mother who always recreated a “Cosmo Cooks” recipe from her 1960s- 70s Cosmopolitan magazines.  Sometimes she struck pay-dirt (Spaghetti Carbonara Cosmo style was excellent).  Occasionally though, she whipped up a bizarre dish so heinous I would feign illness and stagger off clutching a body part. For me, a cloistered kid in a small town full of Italians and Irish north of Boston during these President Johnson/Nixon years, the smell of this bright orange yellow curry was as foreign and off-putting as could be.  Sadly, […]

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Say I Love You With A Valentine’s Peep

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It’s Valentine’s week! That means jewelry stores in every mall across America are raking it in, restaurants are planning to overcharge for aphrodisiac inspired menus and every man is hoping for a peak at a Victoria’s Secret… but for something a little less G-String and a little more G-rated, why not consider a box of Valentine’s Peeps?By now you know I am a Peeps fan, they are so dang cute and fluffy and sweet. They are now a perfect Valentine’s treat with their seasonal special offerings. They have cute pink chicks and bunnies, they also have cherry, raspberry and strawberry […]

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Cocktail of the Month Part 2: ‘His’ And ‘Hers’ Twelve Five Rye Cocktails!

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February 2015 Cocktail of the Month Part Deux: With Valentine’s Day right around the corner, we have two special ultimate lovers “his and hers” home bar cocktails featuring rye whiskey. Our favorite mixologist, Amanda Gunderson, Los Angeles-based Congenial Spirits’ director of product development and education, has crafted ‘his’ and ‘hers’ cocktails that speak to what men and women really want- a sweet, strawberry-laced champagne cocktail adorned with a strawberry and rosemary for her (Rye is for Lovers), and a spin on the Michelada (a popular traditional Mexican beer cocktail), including celery bitters and tart grapefruit, for him (Bulls Rye).With uncomplicated, […]

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