Organic Ashwaganda

What is Organic Ashwagandha Root? Ashwagandha stimulates the production of natural skin oils, by promoting the production of vital enzymes and proteins such a Hyaluronan which are crucial for skin hydration and strength. It is often prescribed for dry, rough, aging skin. It’s naturally occurring antioxidant-rich components help to fight against environmental stressors, preventing against premature aging. Novel cleansing components of Ashwagandha such as Withanolides help to cleanse and decongest skin, prevent pores from getting clogged.


Curious? Check out this organic skincare line from ASDM Beverly Hills!

https://shareasale.com/u.cfm?d=336163&m=64896&u=1738419&afftrack=

Four Eyes

Do you ever get sick of your “look”. We all get into ruts with our style. Stale makeup looks, that hairstyle that you see yourself wearing in a photo from years ago. Switching a lip color, or adding some bangs can be a quick fix. But, the best and least committal way to change up your look is to try a new pair of glasses! I have a very high prescription, which means most of my lenses can look like coke bottles, not to mention they cost a fortune. So, I decided, finally to try Warby Parker. It is the program where you can order 5 sample styles to try on, for free, at home. Perfect! The site is clean and easy to browse, with just enough, but not too many options. They have made getting new glasses fun and effortless, and, best of all, affordable! My glasses were only $125! The last time I bought a pair in an optical shop, I paid over 500, because of my complex lens. If you’re curious, check out their site in the link below. You won’t be disappointed. xo

https://shareasale.com/r.cfm?b=1263522&u=1738419&m=47174&urllink=&afftrack=

Late Bloomers

When you are young, you never really think about getting older. 13, 18, 21. Then comes 30….and you become aware of the pending “middle age”, which is a horrible terminal in my opinion! I prefer to refer to this stage as being “in your prime”, or something more positive. Middle aged just sounds, well, sounds like you might as well give up as you barrel to the finish line of life.

The beauty queens and perfect girls from high school, who most of us envied were really a rarity, at least where I went to school. Unless you were one of the lucky ones. I recall most kids being awkward and gawky and somewhat stressed out. Hormones, bad hair and interpersonal issues. I remember being so shy that I would take of my thick glasses before walking through the main hallway, so that I wouldn’t need to make eye contact. This translated into other kids thinking I was “stuck up”, when in actuality, I was blind as a bat and super shy. I have to say that I hated high school. The morning bus, the smell of it, the redundancy, and hollowness I felt there. To me it felt like “doing time”, and I counted down the days to exit for once and for all. Being a “late bloomer” does have its perks. Although it challenging and lonely during the early years, there’s a payoff on the other end. Overall, I feel better than ever as I get older. Of course, I still struggle with my own “moods”, but for the most part I enjoy my life. Maintaining an attitude of appreciation for what we have is key. Everyone has something to be grateful for. It’s not about material things, because money comes and goes. Its more about our outlook, which can come and go as well. Just remember you can only control your own thoughts, behavior and choices. Let the rest go. Smile more, because crying makes wrinkles. Be a decent human being. Be selective about the people and energy you choose to be around, even if that means you only have a few friends. Quality, not quantity. Love more. I don't mean romantic love, but being a kind and loving person. It’s a lot easier than the alternative. And, above all, love yourself. Take care of yourself and the rest will follow. xoxo

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Inner Beauty

As a makeup artist, I see beauty everywhere. Well, almost everywhere. Colors, shapes, natural elements and compositions. These days, the current "beauty ideal", can be bought for a price. However, there is such a thing as inner beauty. That intangible "it quality". I believe it comes from depth and substance. Experience and compassion. Sure, there are "pretty people" everywhere (especially on social media...insert eye roll here);  but to me, real beauty is something far more profound. It is eternal. In the soul. It exudes from the eyes. That ever elusive element. What is beauty to you?

Mascara Madness

The first time I ever wore makeup, it was Great Lash black mascara by Maybelline that I borrowed (yikes), from my friend's big sister. Okay, I lied. The very first cosmetic I used was actually Bonne Belle Peach lip balm that my grandmother got for me. Yes, the giant one on a satin neck cord. Very 80's. However, the first, and most likely last makeup item I will ever use, is mascara. I can admit that I'm a mascara whore. The more the better. From cheapies, to the most luxurious, I've had them all. The packages may say, "one-coat", but does anyone really just apply a single coat of mascara? My method, is to begin at the base of the root, wiggle the wand back and forth, then swiftly whisk outward. I repeat this in front of the mirror, mouth in that funny oval. Repeat, repeat, repeat, until reaching the edge of what I like to call the "Tammy Faye" moment. You might be too young to recall, but if you google Tammy Faye Baker, you will find out what I mean. Mascara enhances, creates contrast, and wakes up the eyes. If I had only one item in my cosmetic bag, it would have to be my go-to L'Oreal Voluminous Mascara in Blackest Black. Oh, and maybe lip balm....Bonne Belle Peach?

What is one item you absolutely can't do without?

 Don't Blink...

Don't Blink...

Shady Lady

Summer sun, winter sun, anytime there's too much sun, it's time to protect your skin! No matter your complexion, too much sun causes premature aging, discoloration, crinkling, and other unwanted side effects. That tan might look pretty when you're young, but you'll pay for it later, and in more ways than one. If vanity doesn't concern you, skin cancer should. In addition to using a sunscreen daily, you can find many foundations which feature built in spf. Below are a couple of my personal faves:

L'Oreal-True Match Foundation https://www.lorealparisusa.com/products/makeup/face/foundation-makeup/true-match-super-blendable-makeup.aspx?shade=w0-5-cream-ivory#w1-porcelain This line offers spf protection, and a wide selection of shades from the palest to deepest ranges. I love this foundation because it applies evenly, and dries down to a soft powder-like, natural looking finish. 

Another line, It Cosmetics https://www.itcosmetics.com/face/foundation/your-skin-but-better-cc-cream-with-spf-50/ITC_0008.html#start=1&cgid=face-foundation, a "good for your skin" makeup line, features spf 50 in their foundations, and they are finally expanding their shades to include more skin tones. A little bit goes a long way with this product. It is buildable for great coverage!

You can always top it all off with a hat and shades, the perfect way to stay cool in the shade, and look fabulous while doing it. xo

 Hiding from the Sun

Hiding from the Sun

The Lipstick Files

She knew in her gut that something just wasn't quite right. Her fiancé had been acting extra sweet, yet her intuition told her it was insincere. Ella wasn't one to pry, but a sudden change in his behavior had forced her to investigate. Staying late at work more than once a week, had become a habit. When she texted him, he didn't answer like he used to, and he always had an excuse. Things just didn't add up. She was no dummy, and with the wedding just weeks away, there was no way she was gonna get played for a fool. Not this time. Not ever.

So Ella did what she had to do. Kissing her fiancé, and seeing him off to work at his usual time, she got up and made herself a strong cup of coffee. She would need it today. Taking a leisurely shower, she shampooed and deep conditioned her hair. She had to look her absolute best. After contemplating what to wear, Ella selected the black lace playsuit topped off with a big floppy hat. She knew it was one of his all-time favorites.

At her vanity, she applied a dewy foundation and set it with sheer powder. Next, she gently swept on a bronzer to softly contour her features. She then added a clean black liquid eyeliner, carbon mascara, and filled her perfectly arched brows with M.A.C. Great Brows kit, creating a soft, yet strong frame to her face.

For the final touch, she lined her lips with M.A.C. Redd Lipliner, then carefully applied M.A.C. Lady Danger, a vivid bright coral red lipstick with a lip brush, until her lips were a flawless eye-catching pout.  Looking at her reflection in the mirror she smiled, and thought to herself, "what a red lip can do for a girl!" With that, she turned on her high heels, grabbed her Italian red leather tote, and headed to the door. She was ready to do what a girl's gotta do!

www.maccosmetics.com

 M.A.C. Lady Danger Matte

M.A.C. Lady Danger Matte

More than a Lipstick

It feels good to do good. Why not buy a lipstick that makes you feel as good as you look! Sweet Lou Cosmetics gives 25% of net profits to non-profit organizations who are on a mission to build up women & girls. They support programs that teach youth the confidence & compassion to stand up for themselves by using the power of music, film, and more. 

To find out more about Sweet Lou, go to:

https://sweetloucosmetics.com

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Ho Ho Ba (Jojoba)

Jojoba oil is one of my long time favorite multi-purpose products. I use organic jojoba oil on a cotton ball to remove eye makeup, and I swear it helps keep my lashes supple and healthy. In addition, it can be added into any body cream to enhance moisture without feeling greasy. I also prefer using a few drops of jojoba to argan oil for taming frizzy hair. Jojoba oil can be mixed into a multitude of home remedies. Look for organic jojoba oil. You can even find it at Trader Joe's!

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Four Eyes

I got my first pair of glasses at 8. In high school, I switched to contact lenses. I've always had a love-hate relationship with glasses. With 20-600 vision, I absolutely need corrective lenses to see 20-20. In middle school, I would take off my glasses to walk down the hall, and I was so blind, that people assumed I was stuck up because I never said hi....ummm, hello... it was because I couldn't see anyone! Trying to look "prettier" for boys totally backfired. Ironically, now I know that lots of guys actually love glasses. I had so many things all wrong. 

In recent years, I've tried color contacts for a quick change, and although they look interesting in a creepy way, I find that they never fit quite right. I might look like a cat-eyed zombie, but one blink, and I can't see at all. A blind cat-eyed zombie. Umm, no. 

Over recent years, there has been a resurgence in glasses styles, and I now find them to be the perfect accessory. With so many colors, shapes and styles, it's a quick way to switch up your look. Glasses offer the perfect camouflage for those pesky under eye circles, fine lines, and "whatnots". The bonus of my high prescription, is that they magnify my eyes, making me look sort of like a crazy-doll, which is a "look" in some places. My relationship with glasses has really changed, and I need more in my life! 

Trying on frames is a tedious ordeal, but it's a lot more fun with a company like Warby Parker, where you can order the frames, and try on for free before committing. The styles are all current, and the collection is beautifully curated. You can try, buy, or return. If you prefer to try things on in the comfort of your own home, check out Warby Parker!

https://shareasale.com/r.cfm?b=1178082&u=1738419&m=47174&urllink=&afftrack=

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Neck Treatments

I know, I know, you came to this post in search of that magic elixir to smooth and tone your neck. Soon, I will be reviewing the latest products and cosmetic procedures for this delicate area, but until then, may I offer a tried and true style suggestion? Scarves. A classic way to accessorize, while providing the perfect camouflage for any neck issues you're having. Personally, I'm a fan of vintage silk scarves, but there are many designer items out there as well. 

 

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Authenticity

This morning I woke up thinking about authenticity. In a world where Instagram dictates who and what is cool, the current "president" of the U.S. uses Twitter as a mouthpiece, and filters have the ability to make a granny look like a total sexpot, it seems we're losing our grip on reality. The majority of people are tethered to their cell phones. Meanwhile, children get ignored, elderly people disconnected, and even pets are neglected. Eye contact and social interaction are diminished. People pass one another in the street, buried so deep in their phones, that they miss the possibility of a chance meeting, or connection. (Oh yeah, "there's an app for that...")

I just wonder. A lot. 

This applies to beauty as well. I have said for some time now, that once everyone starts to look too "perfect" and too much the same in the virtual world; realness, intelligence, and authenticity will become our new beauty paradigm. Smart is sexy after all. Pretty can only go so far, and although we can all do our best to age gracefully, nothing lasts forever. Nothing. 

I know it might sound ridiculous coming from a makeup artist, but I am talking about the bigger picture, and it seems like the more we get sucked into our phones, the less we really "see". It literally shrinks vision inward, so that we become almost myopic. Comparison, judging, and insecurities are amplified. Cyber bullying is epidemic. Hell, even the president does it.  No wonder there's an explosion of narcissists and self-obsessed individuals. I suggest a taking a "time-out" from your phone, a "detox" off of Instagram. Do a "reality check". Nobody wants to look back at their life, and say, "oh yeah, I spent thousands, and thousands of hours staring at a cell phone."  No-one.

Sorry for the rant. Feel free to chime in on the comment section below. I would love to hear your thoughts. xoxo one love.

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Lip Switch

One day you wake up and realize you've been wearing that same shade of lipstick forever. It might very well be your "signature look". But, sometimes little changes can make all the difference. I'll admit, my default has long been pink-nude glossy lips. (Insert eye roll here.) I blame it on living in the Valley for too long. When my last go-to "girly-pink" ran out, I applied a bright red instead. It's crazy because you would think as a makeup artist, I would be more daring. We all need to try new things, evolve, reinvent and be open to change. This applies to everything in life. Nobody wants to be "that lady" stuck in a time warp. I suggest you switch it up! It's only lipstick after all....and with all of the color choices out there, the options are limitless...who do you want to be today?

 What is your mood today?

What is your mood today?

Cruelty Free Makeup Brushes

Do you every wonder what your makeup brushes are made from? Brushes have traditionally been made from animal hair, going back to ancient times. Many still are. However, today we have many options for makeup brushes, including vegan brushes. I love Bdellium. These ethically made makeup brushes are pro quality, yet reasonably priced for all. They have a wide range available on their site. in addition, you can find an assortment of lush lipsticks and lip crayons, in a beautiful range of colors. 

https://shareasale.com/r.cfm?b=1138244&u=1738419&m=59471&urllink=&afftrack=

 Invest in a quality brush set. Take care of your brushes and they will last for years. xoxo

Invest in a quality brush set. Take care of your brushes and they will last for years. xoxo

 Naughty Nude is always Nice!

Naughty Nude is always Nice!

Mineral Skin Mist

From Morningstar Minerals, Derma Boost, is a rejuvenating spray mist. This rich vitamin, mineral & amino acid replenisher can be used on skin and hair. Extracted from ancient plant matter, Derma Boost is formulated to restore skin to a smooth, healthy condition. I apply to my face and body after a shower, before applying moisturizer. In addition, I like to use it intermittently during the day. It's far less expensive than its competitors, and of higher quality.  Click on the link below to find out more about the line and what they have to offer.

http://www.msminerals.com

My mission in life is not merely to survive, but to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humor, and some style.
— Maya Angelou