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Shopper: Vera Jiang, 25
Date/Time: 5.12.2011, 2:12 p.m.
Store: The Body Shop
Location: 71-03 Austin Street
What’s in Vera’s Bag
Vera Jiang, a 25-year-old graduate student at Columbia University, visited The Body Shop in Forest Hills on a Thursday afternoon to browse the cosmetics and skin care. “I came in because I needed body massage oil and saw there was a sale, so I started shopping,” says Jiang, who moved to New York from China two-and-a-half years ago and is working on a PhD in archeology. Jiang says she prefers shopping online for beauty products and names her favorite brands as Lancôme, Olay and Kiehl’s. “Normally I find something I like and just keep refilling it,” she says. “I’ll usually buy hair care at drugstores, and overall have a very simple beauty philosophy.” On this day, The Body Shop was offering “buy three get one free” on skin care and makeup. “I didn’t know too much about the products and which would be good for me,” says Jiang. “The saleswoman gave me good recommendations but wasn’t pushy.” Jiang liked the experience enough to say she’d be back in the future.
Shopper: Sonia Rahman,29
Date/Time: 5.12.2011, 3:23 p.m.
Store: Duane Reade
Location: 107-16 Continental Avenue
What’s in Sonia’s Bag
Sonia Rahman, a 29-year-old Richmond Hill resident, stopped by Duane Reade after lunching with a friend in Forest Hills. “I’m drawn towards soothing products and brands that work for sensitive skin,” says Rahman, who adds, “I love candles and anything vanilla-scented.” Currently enrolled in photography and ceramics classes part-time, Rahman says she is always looking for new brands and products that won’t irritate her skin and that will fit easily into her streamlined beauty routine. “I avoid anything with too many chemicals in it,” she says. Rahman, who is originally from Bangladesh, says she is influenced by Indian beauty culture and couldn’t live without head-to-toe moisturizing and black eyeliner. “It’s part of who I am,” says Rahman. “I like to keep it pretty basic but also like a little glamour from time to time.” Naming her favorite brands as MAC and Clinique, Rahman says she isn’t afraid to try new products. “I’ll try almost anything once, but if it makes me break out I won’t use it again,” she says.