Fly Me to the (Air) Mall

Have you ever actually spent time shopping at the airport? No seriously. Besides the typical meal, occasional tourist t-shirt, and the rare neck pillow, have you ever spent your layover browsing the stores and boutiques? I know that up until the past month, I never took a second glance at the stores in the Pittsburgh Airport (or any airport for that matter). Why? Well, I'm not exactly sure. Maybe I didn't think shopping + flying made sense. Or perhaps the designer brands threw me off. I didn't really think there would actually be feasible shopping opportunities for me. Interestingly enough, I was proved wrong! While I wasn't able to personally attend, I was invited to Pittsburgh's Airmall #FLY2014 event to celebrate the opening of a ton of new stores as a result of a huge $10 million renovation, including Furla, Pinko (the first Pinko boutique in the U.S.), Lacoste, Metalsmiths, Tumi, and Collezioni-The Beauty Gallery. The event included a runway show and a makeover session from Carmindy of What Not To Wear! (Yes, I was super bummed I missed it, but you can check out Jess's recap here.)

Photo credit: Kristi Jan Hoover

Pittsburgh Airmall #FLY2014 Event Furla

Pittsburgh Airmall #FLY2014 Carmindy What Not to Wear 5 Minute Face Makeover

Carmindy from What Not to Wear book signing for Bloom at Pittsburgh Airmall #FLY2014 event

Pittsburgh Airmall #FLY2014 event runway show

Pretty awesome, huh?

Even though I missed out on all of the cool events, I was given the opportunity to explore and shop for an afternoon a few weekends ago! (Fun story: It almost always feels so awkward going through security, but it feels even more anxiety-inducing when you aren't even flying and you have to get a special day-pass and you're not carrying anything...I still sent my typical "Made it!" text to my parents once I got through. #nerd)

Sticking true to myself, I am not a high-end designer girl. I just can't do it. But I can at least appreciate it. I spent some time browsing in Furla, drooling over their gorgeous handbags and loving on some of the fun pieces in Pinko. Their clearance rack was actually fairly reasonable. Moving on to some of the more "me" stores, I really enjoyed browsing Metalsmith, which is a great place to get a claddaugh ring or a special "life event" gift like a communion, graduation, wedding, or anniversary. Eventually, I got my shopping on at Nine West, L'Occitane, and Collezioni.

Here's what I snagged:

My purchases at AirMall Pit from Nine West L Occitane Collezioni

This red Hudson Leather Crossbody beauty is really great, BUT I have been looking for a black leather crossbody for a long time and I was disappointed that they didn't have the black in store. I bought it anyway and really do like it, but I know that the black will be more practical and I can just order it online and exchange it. What do you think?

Since almost every loafer I've ever tried on has instantly hurt my feet, I was surprised that these Lobster Smoking Loafers were fairly comfortable. Since these were something I would likely never buy on my own (out of sheer practicality and budget when there are so many other shoes to buy first), I used this opportunity to get something special and fun.

I'm at that stage in my life where I want to take better preventative care of my skin (beyond Accutane). I know pricey hand creams seem ridiculous, but I was sold once I tried a tester of this shea butter lotion trio (along with everything else at L'Occitane). It's a "luxury item" that I am willing to buy since it will be so useful in the months to come. Additionally, I've been looking for the perfect perfume for basically forever and I think I may have found my match! This Cherry Blossom roll-on is light, fresh, and feminine without that powdery or overly floral scent. I think I am going to add the full size spray to my Christmas list.

Going along with my skin care goals, I added two Clinique products (Even Better Clinical Dark Spot Corrector and All About Eyes Serum De-Puffing Massage) and have already been seeing improvements in just the week or so of use. I threw in Essie's Chinchilly after seeing it on Angelica and am so surprised that I was willing to step WAY out of my comfort zone (You may recall my polish preferences in this fun video). Collezioni was SO much fun to browse because they had beauty products and fragrances from a wide variety of popular brands.

I was impressed to see that prices were the same as what you might find at a mall, so even though food prices might be higher, you don't have to fork out extra cash to shop at the Airmall.

...Which is good news for one very lucky reader BECAUSE I'm giving away a $100 gift certificate for Pittsburgh's Airmall to be used in any store or restaurant! This gift certificate is valid until September 17, 2015, so that's almost a full year to make it to the airport to shop your heart out before or after your next trip. Head on over to Instagram to enter to win! The giveaway will run until Saturday, October 25th at midnight. Winner will be announced on Sunday, October 26th :) Enjoy!

Disclaimer: Pittsburgh Airmall provided me with a gift certificate to shop and one to give away in exchange for my media support. As always, all opinions are my own. This post may contain affiliate links. Thank you for supporting the brands that make The Modern Austen possible!