Shopping

By Rachel Goldman

Are you a Control Freak?
Constantly Stressed?
Commitment phobic?
Too sensitive?
Always looking for the Bigger Better Thing?
Need constant affection?
Do you have Obsessive Compulsive Beauty Product Buying Disorder?

If you answered “Yes” to any of these questions, I don’t have a tall, dark handsome man for you but I do have a great new store to fit your needs. Callistà³: Fresh Soaps and Cosmetics just recently appeared in the Roosevelt Field Mall in Garden City, New York and already it has made quite an impression. This is due to their unique take on some of your old favorite things. A fresh-obsessed store, Callistà³ is run like a gourmet delicatessen. Their soaps sit in huge blocks waiting to be cut at your discretion; face masks and creams are refrigerated and freshly made, waiting in ice cream-like tubs; and the daily specials are written in chalk everyday. Also, as promised there is something for everyone.

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For Control Freaks:
With 22 varieties of soap, odds are Callistà³ has more than one thing for you. In colorful shiny blocks they are sliced to order, and sold by weight so you have complete authority over your purchase. You say when, you say how much! Try a little bit of everything or stock up on your favorite. These hypoallergenic soaps made of essential oils, herbs, spices, flower extracts, fruits and honey are never animal-tested – only writer-tested. This writer’s personal favorite is Helen of Troy, a delicious concoction of rice grains, milk, cinnamon, vanilla and musk. The rice grains exfoliate, while the creamy mixture left my skin moisturized. Oh, and believe me, it smells and looks good enough to eat (okay in weakness I gave it a lick, and for your information it still tasted like soap). Another store favorite is Penelope, made with coconut oil, almond oil, peach oil and apricot oil, its bright pink color and wake-you-up scent smells like fruity daiquiris with fun umbrellas served on the beach (side note: the umbrellas do not contribute to the scent). Most of their soaps run for $17.50 a pound, so a regular size bar will cost you about $4.00.

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For the Stressed Out:
Looking like brightly colored Easter eggs, Callisto’s oxygen balls are the key to turning your bathtub into your own personal spa. Pick from eight different varieties to match your mood or simply match your soap scent for a more complete aromatherapy session. Just drop yourself and your oxygen ball into a nice warm tub and let it fizz away. I used the Helen of Troy after a particularly stressful day and let my worries melt away and the essential oils and flower extracts soften my skin. Side note: The Helen of Troy oxygen ball is most effective as a de-stressor when paired with a full class of Chardonnay. At $6 to $7 a pop, they make a great gift and are definitely cheaper than a day at the spa.

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For the Commitment Phobic:
No need to commit here, Callistà³ loves to give free samples because they know you will come back. Their yummy facial scrubs and masks are kept refrigerated at all times because they have a minimum amount of preservatives. I loved the Fruit Cocktail, it may look like strawberry yogurt but it passed all of my moisturizing tests: It absorbed quickly into my skin, left a smooth surface for my makeup, and it didn’t sting when I globed some into my left eye (it happens a lot). I also loved the Coco Scrub for weekly exfoliation. It left my skin soft and didn’t irritate, so try a little bit of everything and take as little or as much as you like. If you feel like you are becoming too dependant or comfortable with once product, mix it up and try another.

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For the Overly Sensitive:
Callisto’s Liquid Gold line refers to its base ingredient Olive Oil, which was the center of Mediterranean cultures in centuries past due its multiple uses. For those who need to live life fragrance-free, the Liquid Gold line is a great option featuring shampoos, conditioners, toners and both day and night cream. I recommend check out the Olive Oil soap from their Liquid Gold Line. This soap is wonderful for dry skin and is stuffed with crushed olive pits for extra exfoliation.

Gimme the Bigger, Better thing:
I like to live on the edge, and I’m always looking for something better to come along. When I saw their colorful solid shampoos and body oils displayed like gourmet chocolates, my interest was immediately sparked. Imagine being able to travel without worrying about spilling shampoo and lotion all over your brand-new vacation clothes – at that thought I stripped naked and jumped in the shower to try it out. (I, of course, waited until I was in the privacy of my own apartment.) The shampoo was so easy to use, I just lathered my hair up and I was in business. In addition, they last longer than your silly passé plastic bottles because there is no wasted product. It’s best to use the solid body oils after the shower, or it takes a bit to warm them up. The body oils are also great for massages and come in a variety of flavors (ohh la la!) The shampoos retail around $8 a bar and the body oil range from $9 to $11.

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For the affection starved:
Do you need a little TLC? The staff is not only knowledgeable, but they give you cute little bottles of water and mini chocolates while you shop. They are great at creating the perfect gift basket for you and even make creative party favors.

Finally:
Do you have Obsessive Compulsive Beauty Product Buying Disorder?
Oh well I can’t help you but I know this great store you should check out on the second floor of the Roosevelt Field Mall across from BeBe:

Callistà³: Fresh Soaps and Cosmetics
www.callistosoaps.com
516-746-5559
Open 10 to 9 Monday through Saturday
And 11-7 on Sundays

Originally published March 2004
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