Unprecedented Presents for Mother’s Day

Victor dE Souza couture flowers moire gown

Unprecedented times call for unprecedented gifts – here are a few suggestions that will have your Mom marking the occasion in a style as unique as she is. The best news is that these are all things that can be used right here and now – no waiting for the lockdown to let up. Unfortunately, the offshoot of this pandemic is that we can no longer use the expression “Go big or go home.” lol

Sting, Marc Quinn, Sir Patrick Stewart, Sean Scully, Charlie Mackesy,
Heston Blumenthal, Burning Man Project

First off, a charitable option in which you can “discover the incredible opportunities you have to make a difference in response to Covid-19. “Now through May 8th Sotheby’s, in a partnership with Google, hosts Mayday Covid-19 charity auction. This sale offers you the chance to bid on virtual access with well-known luminaries with 100% of the proceeds benefitting the International Rescue Committee (IRC).

Mumford & Sons, Sacha Baron Cohen, David Blaine, Sheku Kanneh-Mason, The Strokes

Since that 1980’s Police song “Don’t Stand So Close to Me” has new resonance in the current climate, how about a private virtual recording with Sting? Other musical offerings: a virtual conversation with The Strokes, a conversation, and a classical concert with British cellist Sheku Kanneh-Mason or a pub quiz with Mumford & Sons.

Reflect on global issues and exchange ideas with Madeleine Albright,
Hillary Clinton, Lionel Barber or David Miliband

Mom always wanted to be more masterful in the kitchen? Maybe a virtual cooking lesson with Heston Blumenthal would be appreciated. Are you kidding? My Mom’s not making dinner; she’s protesting the patriarchy. For her: Coffee and virtual conversation with Hillary Clinton or Madeleine Albright.

Or how about a chat with an astronaut?

Apollo 9 astronaut Russell Schweickart, Downton Abbey

Should Mom be a fan of a recently popular T.V. show featuring English royalty – make sure to bid on a behind-the-scenes “LockDownton Abbey” virtual Houseparty. At this writing, the virtual magic performance with David Blaine is leading the pack of cards ($22,000 + make sure your family has one handy). The second place is a virtual hang out with Sacha Baron Cohen ($18,000). Too rich for your blood and wallet?

Charlotte Tilbury

And finally, the virtual Makeup & Skincare Brush-Along with Charlotte Tilbury MBE is a mere $2,600 at the moment?

Victor dE Souza Couture Opera detachable bow mask

Although not in the experience category, Mom will certainly experience plenty of compliments and envious stares in these necessary but beautiful accessories from Victor dE Souza Couture – they are guaranteed to leave her speechless (or at least muted) lol. How can she not stop traffic (what little there is these days) in this stunning fuchsia Opera detachable bow mask ($250)? It’s a “fantasy gown for the face,” according to Victor himself, and I am in total swoon-worthy agreement!

Other masks include a pink bloom Garden print, a blue Damask design (each $84), Suspiria, a hand-embroidered mask ($160), which has a matching gown (good for easing into gala season once that returns) and a tea-stained floral Shabby-Couture version ($124). All from the luxury mask collection handmade in VdS’s New York City atelier and available on victordesouzany.com/

These statement-making, non-medical grade masks are made of two layers of non-stretch beautiful silk taffeta, rayon blend, linen, or canvas cotton pre-washed and washable. They are lined with two layers of thick canvas cotton in between for extra filtering and extra room to breathe. The color-coordinated elastic straps wrap around the ear rather than the head for comfort and minimum disruption to the face and adjustable plastic nose bridge. Victor also sells a line of luxury lipsticks encased in beautiful chess-like pieces lipsticks ($68) if Mom is living dangerously by not covering her nose and mouth.

Overtone for Brown Hair

Finally, for those who are lamenting the appearance of gray hairs with no salon appointment in the foreseeable future –here’s my secret weapon which I’ve used regularly at home way B.C. (Before Covid-19). Overtone Coloring Conditioner comes in every color of the rainbow (plus several natural hair color shades if Mom’s a traditionalist). Since it’s a conditioner that washes out rather than a permanent dye, you really can’t screw it up. Its gel-like consistency makes it easy to use without running, and it smells like minty toothpaste.

I’ve experimented with Extreme Blue, Blue for Brown Hair as well as Extreme Purple – I’ve also mixed them to get an indigo tint which magically covers the bothersome gray hairs making it look like I’ve spent hours getting blue highlights. Start with the more highly pigmented tub of Coloring Conditioner ($29) and maintain color with the bottle of Daily Conditioner ($18) – both super easy and fun to use. (Beware of staining porous surfaces in your bathroom such as unsealed marble). I’ve found that any facial toner with alcohol successfully removes stains from hands or hairline. Gift cards are available online so that Mom can pick her own vibrant or natural hue.

Laurel Marcus

OG journo major who thought Strunk & White's "The Elements of Style" was a fashion guide. Desktop comedienne -- the world of fashion gives me no shortage of material.

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