Tag Archives: NYC

Product Review: “Model in a bottle”

11 Oct

**Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it on my blog. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”**

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B ack in July, I wrote about a product that I had discovered at The Makeup Show NYC. “Model in a Bottle was a featured item that everyone were talking about. The top makeup artists in the industry said it was a must-have makeup kit item. The concept is pretty simple: if you want to keep your makeup look prestige for hours through almost any force, then finish your look and spray on Model in a Bottle. Bam… done. Too easy to be true? I thought so. Because seeing is believing, I contacted the great crew at Model in a Bottle and mentioned that I heard about them in NYC and wanted to feature them in an upcoming blogpost. They were so nice and excited about my interests! They sent me a complimentary bottle as well as a couple of other goodies to try. So the testing began.

According to the information on their sister website link (Hollywood Fashion Secrets), the original Model in a Bottle (pink label) offers the following:

  • Dries with a translucent matte finish
  • Absorbs excess oil
  • Doesn’t clogs pores
  • Never interferes with or reduces the effectiveness of SPF
  • Is fast drying, never sticky
  • Has a fresh clean scent
  • Adds moisture with Aloe Vera extract
  • Not tested on animals
  • Proudly made in the USA

  • (*According to the product statements, the sensitive skin formula doesn’t claim to not clog pores, and is lightly scented with natural lavender.*)


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    That’s a lot of big claims to live up to! Can a product do all of that for a sensitive & combination skinned, raging redhead without any irritation? Can it do all of that AND still keep my makeup looking epic all day–from 9-5 then hit the dance floor without any touchups? We were about to find out.

    First, I’ll start by saying that Model in a Bottle is SO easy to use. Simply apply your makeup as usual, allowing your mascara to dry completely. With your eyes closed, just use 2-4 sprays of the Original Formula Setting Spray (Sensitive Skinned formula if that’s your style) to set your makeup. Keep your eyes closed for a minute to allow it to dry. (If using the sensitive skin formula, give it an extra minute.) That’s it!

    The day I decided to try it, I wanted to put it through a good test. I left my loft with a full faced makeup look: SPF moisturizer, primer, foundation, glitter eyeshadow, mascara, liners, lip color, blush, HD powder. The temperatures were in the high 80’s with humidity. I started out by putting in five hours at the tattoo shop next to a window with direct sunlight. From there, I walked home–close by–during the warmest part of the day. After a bit if sweating (girls like to call it glowing!), I changed into something more “fun” and headed out to see my friend’s band playing at a local club. Several hours of dancing and mingling, I headed back to the loft. As I sat down at my vanity to “take my face off”, I realized my skin and makeup still looked AH-MAY-ZING! I actually was beyond happy at how well my makeup stood up throughout the day and night. Nothing had smudged, smeared, flaked, fell out or streaked. I had a nice matte glow, just like I had when I left the house that morning with no breakthrough shine. Awesome!

    Removing my makeup didn’t require any extra effort either. I took my eye makeup with a cotton ball and my eye makeup remover just like usual. My simple face cleanser washed all the makeup off without scrubbing or a repeat cleansing. I was very happy about that. And so was my face. Even though Model in a Bottle DOES come in a sensitive skin formula (with the added benefit of hydro essential oils of lavender and Aloe Vera, this formula adds moisture to the skin and helps control inflammation for those who have drier complexions or more sensitive skin conditions like rosacea), I didn’t need it. The original formula held my look tight without causing my skin irritation or redness. I was beyond impressed! I had finally found a way to lockdown my makeup look all day! Not to mention? I couldn’t have found this at a better time. A new writing endeavor will have me out and about for long photo shoots and extensive “mingling” and my makeup will need to look spot on for long periods of times, in all kinds of conditions. This is exactly what I’ll need!

    So, regular skinned and sensitive skinned makeup gurus, relax. If you are looking for a product to hold your make up look all day for whatever reason–weddings, outdoor gatherings, late nights, moving activities, photo shoots, etc.–I would definitely suggest Model in a Bottle to hold your look in place!

    Model in a Bottle setting spray offers their original formula (pink label) and their sensitive skin formula (purple label). They also make an Eyebrow Sealer and a new Lipstick Sealer as well)

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Sassy…. You’ve Been Invited To The Makeup Show!

27 Apr

MakeupShow

There have been many times that I have been invited to events that involve makeup, fashion, glamour, runways, hair, nails, you name it. I love watching, talking about what is new, what is hot, what is not, even what I would want for myself. This weekend, however, I was invited to attend one of THE hottest makeup events in the United States: The Makeup Show in NYC. It features some of the best names in the business, showing what they have, what they have new, displays, demonstrations and endless samples. It takes up two floors of one of the NYC convention centers and every inch is used! In addition, there are several seminars, hands-on workshops, and endless networking. You cannot attend unless you are in the industry. You must show proof and credentials to your association with the makeup industry.

So how did a simple, redheaded writer get invited to this event you wonder? I was wondering that myself till I got a phone call about a month ago: I was being offered a press to attend anything I wanted to. Full pass! (Insert the jump for joy and mini scream here.) It’s one thing to go to the mall and look for the products by the companies you really like. It’s another to be asked to go to see what is new, what is different, various ways to utilize products, and also see companies that are not in my area. When I received the phone call, the sweet Makeup Show representative informed me when I inquired about the event, my credentials were investigated through companies I work with as well as my blog, and I was chosen to attend with the press. Wow. Just wow.

In addition to attending The Makeup Show, I was also given a pass to be a guest at the press preview the day before. At that time, I will be informed of the various seminars and teachings as well as given a “goodie bag” of new items that select companies would like to distribute to writers before they hit the market. Bingo!… my kind of thing. I always love to get the jump on what will be hot before the fire is even lit. In addition, we will be given selling points about each new item and what market it will be best to cater to. Perfect!

MickRock

Now, if YOU are a makeup/hair/glamour/nails/etc. industry professional, you should SERIOUSLY consider heading to the city for one day, two days or both and learn things that can benefit you as well as your business. What was an added bonus was hearing that they will be having a special guest at the event at well. Mick Rock, a well-known British photographer, will be speaking to a select few on Sunday to talk about his career with well-known artists such as David Bowie, Blondie, Queen, Lady Gaga and more. He will talk about how his career has made an impact in not just the world of music and photography but also fashion and makeup. He is known for creating unforgettable images of these icons and more, which are featured in galleries all over the world. At The Makeup Show NYC, he will share his story, show the attendees his personal favorite pieces of work, and offer advice to makeup professionals looking to find their own style and niche in the industry. This is sure to bring some additional excitement and enthusiasm to those who will be attending. I know this will be so fascinating and inspiring to myself as a writer to hear the stories from the source themselves! (For more information, go to The Makeup Show NYC webpage and click on “Education”)

The Makeup Show NYC will feature over 75 beauty brands including sponsor brands Make Up For Ever, NARS, Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics, Smashbox, Pinnacle Cosmetics and more. The show will be help Sunday, May 1, 2016 from 9am to 6pm and on Monday May 2, 2016 from 9am to 5pm at the Metropolitan Pavilion, 125 West 18th Street in NYC. A complete list of participating brands, speakers, events and prices can be found at http://www.themakeupshow.com. This will be the only east coast stop on the seven-city tour so if you are interested… I seriously suggest you make it happen and get there!

I couldn’t be more excited to be invited as a press representative to this event, so keep an eye out for pictures, information, new items, trends, and maybe even a giveaway afterwards here on my blog. I am sure I will come back with a ton of things to share! And if you are in the industry.. try to be there. It will be unforgettable!!

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And the Winner is……

23 Apr

Everyone…we have a winner!

A big congratulations goes out to Tabitha who got the secret question right for my recent trip:

Sassy will be going to NYC to watch and help with a new book launch party and book signing by the sisters at How to be a Redhead, and sponsored by the awesome crew at Paul Mitchell.

Tabitha?… I will be in touch with you this week to discuss getting the awesome prize to you soon!

The book signing was an absolute blast! I got to meet some great people, including the two fabulous sisters who wrote the book, Stephanie & Adrienne Vendetti. The fabulous crew from Paul Mitchell who was lead by Jill Schnapp–also known as the redheaded specialist in NYC–did some amazing braids on the redhead attendees as well as spoke about Paul Mitchell’s new Ultimate Color Repair line which is PERFECT for us gingers. I made a bunch of contacts including my newest friend Olive who has her own channel on YouTube called “The New York Real”. In addition, I met some great redheads who were a blast to talk with and get to know. I am looking forward to heading back to the city next week to get other fabulous information at The Makeup Show, focusing mostly on skin care and makeup products.

Congratulations again, Tabitha, for your big win! You will be getting some great Paul Mitchell products for you to enjoy!

Thank you as well to supported me on this adventure. It truly was a dream come true. Now? More dreams to tend to and traveling to come!

Sassy Auburn is getting ready to head in to the book signing!

Sassy Auburn is getting ready to head in to the book signing!

Stephanie, Adrienne & myself at the book signing

Stephanie, Adrienne & myself at the book signing

Look at those fabulous redheads!

Look at those fabulous redheads!

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Stephanie, Adrienne & Jill from Paul Mitchell

Stephanie, Adrienne & Jill from Paul Mitchell

Sassy & her new friend Olive talking about future events!

Sassy & her new friend Olive talking about future events!

What would make the event more fun?  Getting a braid from the Paul Mitchell Professionals!

What would make the event more fun? Getting a braid from the Paul Mitchell Professionals!

New Year…. New Sassy?

31 Dec

untitledIn three days, I will be like the rest of the world, joining together to ring in the new year. I hear so many people say, “Oh, I will be so happy for 2015 to come to end.” I’ll be honest, that kind of makes me sad. Sure, there are things that I wish I didn’t have to go through this past year. We all can say that about one thing or another. But the question becomes simple: If you hadn’t gone through this or that, would you have become someone other than you are now? And would you be happy with that new person? Hmmm. As much as I’d love to hand back a few of the cards I was dealt this year, the fact remains that each of those “cards” changed me in one way or another. Some made me grow, some enlightened me, others were scary, some even caused me great pain. But as I sit here at my desk in The Loft, I realize that all of those things, grouped together, have put me right here. And…. I kind of like that. I am happy. I am well. I am enlightened. I am more informed. Does that make me a new person? Nah. It just makes me more insightful. And that’s not so bad.

As the ball is prepared to drop in Times Square soon, I took some time to look back at the things I did want to do this year but didn’t. They aren’t really all fashion and glamour oriented, but some are. I’m sure as the year moves along, I will think of others. Let’s just say it is kind of a bucket list for 2016. But I have to say, a bucket list covers a really large span of time. I am just thinking of the here and now, no farther than the end of 2016. It kind of makes the goals a little more focused and attainable. So what would I like to do this coming year? These are some definites:

270665_1345_11) Get to NYC to see Fashion Week in the fall.This item is on my REAL bucket list, but I’ll be honest… I’m tired of waiting for the right time. Or more so, I am tired of waiting for it to happen. So, I have decided to just MAKE it happen. As a fashion & glamour writer, I have a lot of friends that I have made in this industry. I am going to do whatever I have to so I can be there. I don’t mean just walk around the streets of Manhattan, hoping to bump into Michael Korrs or Betsey Johnson either. I mean go with a purpose: to watch and write. I will grab the first train out of my hometown, iPad in hand, and sit in the crowd with just like me. People that love fashion, that are interested in new trends. On the inside I will be doing cartwheels, but on the outside I will be smiling and composed, knowing I’ve earned my spot there. And it will be FABULOUS! Sassy may want: a nice, chic briefcase/carry-all to hold her notepad, laptop, iPad, pens, pencils, datebook, etc. like Henri Bendel’s West 57th Briefcase in black, $398.00. Available at Henri Bendel’s website.

VS Pant2) Enjoy nature more. I started doing this a little bit at the end of this year, and found I had been secluded in my own little world too long to not spend time with Mother Nature the way I had when I was a kid. There is too much technology around us to keep us enthralled, allowing us to forget about the beauty right outside of our window. When I wrote my first article from The Loft, all I had was a laptop, a cup of tea, a beautiful view of a park in fall, and an idea. After I took my first walk in the park, I felt so much more of me had pushed back for whatever reason. Maybe it was my health, my J*O*B, my family or my feelings of responsibility to take care of those around me first. Sure, those things are important and always will be. But to lock myself away and not enjoy the sound of a spring rain, the warmth of the summer sun, the beauty in the colors of autumn or the child within during a first snowfall is a crime to myself. I will embrace the outdoors more to give me a clear mind, body and soul. Sassy may want: some comfortable outdoorsy clothes like Victoria’s Secret PINK Gym Pant in Marl Grey, $54.95 and PINK Athletic Crew Tee in White/Black Orchid, $24.95. Available at VictoriasSecret.com

SBS-6534813) Do my own manicures regularly. Okay, I know that sounds silly but it is actually is a big deal for me. For the longest time, when anyone asked me what my biggest accomplishment was in my life, I would say it was when I stopped biting my nails. You have NO IDEA how huge that was for me. I compared it to quitting smoking cigarettes—two packs a day even! It was my vice when I was bored, nervous, thinking, you name it. Then, literally out of the blue one day, I decided to stop. I had a fake set of nails put on and I loved how they looked but at that time in my life, I couldn’t afford to maintain them. Then I realized I was ready. I didn’t have to convince myself I needed to do it to keep myself healthy. There was nothing really that I needed to do it for. Except myself. So I did. I just stopped, cold turkey. Since then I have let my nails grow out, trimming my cuticles and keeping my hands soft. I asked other beauticians what is the best thing I can do to keep them strong. I follow their advice to the letter. Now, my only problem is keeping them looking fresh when I go about my other job. I’m always bumping them into metal furniture, equipment, you name it and I will get a chip on the second day. OR if I find a really good polish that lasts, I will use my nails as a “tool” which wears down the polish on the tips. I know I shouldn’t, but if I need to get a piece of tape off a box, scrape something off the top of the stove or use them to grab a tack or nail, they will surely chip or thin out. The best thing I can do is keep my hands soft, keep my nails strong, and use the best products to keep my polish on the best that I can. And if they do start looking ratty?…. redo them FAST! Sassy might want: ORLY’s Website Nailtrition, $11.29; Nail Lacquer in Gorgeous, $7.69; Glosser Professional Topcoat, $8.79. Available at Sally Beauty’s website.

TJMjeans4) Spend even more wisely. When it comes to my shopping “addiction”, I am better than most when it comes to how much I spend and what I spend it on. I am, however, a terrible impulse shopper and that seems to be where I lose my sense of sanity and just fall into “I need that!” mode. I need to follow the plan that I actually stated several years ago: if you see something you want, take a picture of it then walk away. Use the picture to make sure you don’t have anything like it and see if it will get used often while it is in your glamour ensemble. After you do that, delete the picture. If you go back to the store JUST TO LOOK FOR THAT ONE ITEM, or you keep thinking about it or talking about it for 2-3 days afterwards? It is, in my opinion, an impulse buy. The next thing you have to see is if you can get it cheaper any place else or how do you plan on paying for it. And if paying for it suddenly takes precedence over your electric bill, it’s not worth it. If I really have an urge to go shopping, I try to lean myself towards discount stores, consignment shops, thrift stores, or surplus stores where everything is already less money. Then when I get there, I head to the Sale or Clearance rack FIRST. ALWAYS go to the Clearance rack first. And don’t forget to check online for discount codes or coupons (I LOVE RetailMeNot for store and online shopping). From someone who usually bargain shops to begin with, choosing specific things I NEED rather than random things I want needs to be more of a priority now. Besides…my closet is ready to explode! Sassy might want: a nice day out at my local Marshall’s or TJ Maxx to get something like an inexpensive pair of designer jeans like Celebrity Pink Skinny Shaper Stretch Jeans in blue, $19.99. Available at TJ Maxx’s online store

pBBW1-22175228v275Tea5) Put myself first more often. I don’t want that to sound selfish, but it can happen to any of us. We get caught up in work goings on, helping others with stuff they need, being at our childrens’ beckon call. We help our spouses to make sure they don’t stress because we know that stress trickles downhill. We take on everyone’s pain and responsibilities losing our own happiness in the process. We often do it without thinking, and when we finally realize we need to step back, we can either be in the middle of a fight about it or worse…lose our own happiness completely. Trust me, I know this from personal experience. Don’t let yourself get too far gone. “No” is an easy word to say. It only has two letters. And my theory has always been if someone can’t get over it, let them get under it. Take time for you. Do things YOU want to do to make yourself happy. Do things that will enlighten you, embrace you, help you to grow. Ask yourself: “Does doing this for someone help ME get to where I am going?” Then ask: “Does doing this help THEM get to where they specifically want to go?” If the answer is no, then think twice. You need to be doing things that will keep you sane, grounded, happy, less stressed, and one with yourself. If it doesn’t, maybe saying “I would really like to, but I just can’t right now…thanks for checking with me though.” This takes the hurt off you for saying no and shouldn’t make them angry since you have given them a sincere “I’m sorry but no.” Open your eyes to new things you have wanted to do but didn’t have the chance. Take a class, climb a mountain, run a marathon, read a novel, paint a picture, remodel a room, head to the spa, take a day-cation for just you. That, in no way shape or form, makes you selfish. It will in the end make you a calmer, clearer, relaxed, well-rounded person. And the fact is…. that benefits EVERYONE! Sassy may want: to indulge herself with a relaxing tea a cup of tea in Lemongrass from Adagio found at Adagio Teas. Enjoy that tasty treat while taking a nice, long bath with and a fragrant bath of scents such as Paris – Pink Champagne and Tulips (from $6.25) from Bath & Bodyworks website.

So, I guess the question remains will a new year bring about a new Sassy? I do know there are things I want to do more of, do less of, explore more, stress less, try new things, make new friends, visit more places. Will this all go on with positive outcomes. Some will, some might, some may just go horribly wrong. But the fact remains this: I will learn and grow from everything I put in an effort to accomplish and that won’t make me a new person, but it sure as hell will make me smile.

So, tell Sassy… do you have any changes you would like to make in the new year? Are any of them glamour, beauty or fashion related? Let me know…I want to hear!!

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30 Days Of Beauty…Day 5

6 Jul

MakeupClipartYeah, it was bound to happen. I missed my post yesterday. I had a REALLY good reason though: it was the World Cup final! USA! USA! USA! The game was awesome, the win was fabulous and the beverages around me were tiring. Which means we won–and I fell asleep. I hang my head in shame.

30DaysSo I need to catch up on yesterday’s post first then do today’s later. Let’s start with “Day 5: Day Make Up Look”. I wish I could say this was simple, but since most of my days are spent at the tattoo shop, I kind of have to have a quick and easy yet edgy look. If I have some extra time, I can get a little more involved with colors, play with different eye looks, lip shades, stuff like that. But I have had to do this for a while now so I’m perfecting the “just fell out of bed” respectable day face. The key is to have a bold look that consists of go-to colors that go with ANYTHING. It took a while to get the right products together: products that were easy to apply, would last all day, would not fade or run, and could work in any weather. A lot of testing occurred. A lot of products were tried. But, success happened! We found a throw-on, go-to daytime look.

Let’s talk a little about what you really want to do first before you perfect a day look. Skin care is really important so no matter how much or how little time you have, washing your face is important. A mild exfoliant in your wash will also remove the dead skin cells that surfaced during the night. If you don’t have a gentle exfoliating cleanser, put a little bit of fine coffee grounds or white sugar into your cleanser. Pat your face dry. Use a light day serum under a gentle moisturizer. Make sure one of them has an SPF of 30 or more. Then, according to your skin type, select a foundation that makes your skin look smooth and even. Then you can move on to your day look makeup.

So here is what I have found to put on for an easy, go with everything, casual Day Make Up Look:

* L’Oreal Studio Secrets Color Corrector Primer in green
* Maybelline FIT ME!® Shine-Free Foundation
* LA Minerals High Definition Diamond Veil
* e.l.f. Cosmetics Blush in Fuchsia Fusion
* New York Color (NYC) Trio Eye Shadow in Skyrise Steel
* Too Faced Cosmetics Perfect Eyes Eyeliner in Black
* Dior Diorshow Iconic Mascara in Rich Black
* Urban Decay 24/7 Glide On Lip Pencil in Ozone
* Buxom Full On Lip Polish in Gabby

There we go. A few products that gives me a simple yet slammin’ day look. What’s nice about these products is that some of them can transition into a very vibrant evening look as well with just a few additional enhancements. That is something you may want to keep in mind if time is minimal to go from a day to night look is something you do frequently.

With Day 5 of “30 Days of Beauty” behind us, you have what my favorite day look products are. It is important to have products that are staples in your vanity that you are comfortable wearing, have mastered their application, and can wear with anything. That sets you up for an easy, stylish look you can start your day with…. any day!!
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30 Days Of Beauty–Day 1…

1 Jul

30DaysHere we go. July is here and we are going to begin the 30 Days of Beauty challenge. It’s also the “Can You Remember To Write & Post Something For 30 Days” challenge for me. I set an alarm on my phone to remind me to do this. Let’s see if it works.

So Day 1 is “Favorite Lipstick”. Actually, this was difficult for me since I am more of a gloss girl. Plus, my very favorite lipstick is actually older than dirt and has been discontinued. I looked in my lipstick drawer to see if any of the ones that were in there were ones I would grab on an average day. And you know what?… There was.

A few months back I was asked to test, try and review a new lipstick by New York Color (NYC). It was a new, longer lasting formula with fade-resistant properties, long lasting shine, and didn’t feather or bleed. After my first use, it lived up to the hype. I really liked how it was long wearing but didn’t dry out my lips. There were many shades in all colors and hues. And the price? Awesome! I’ve paid 10x more for a lipstick that didn’t last half the time!

After a week of testing, I realized that this was a lipstick I could invest a few bucks in to get a couple more shades. I went with a very light frosted pink and also a rich chocolate shade. My daughter found the pink tube one day, wore it, and it’s been MIA from my vanity ever since. The chocolate shade gets used more in the fall. But the initial shade I tested–Sugar Plum–goes with everything. So when the day requires a bright, steady, non-drying lipstick with long lasting color, this is what I turn to:

Day 1: Favorite Lipstick
NYC (New York Color) Expert Last Lip Color in “Sugar Plum”. Found at drug stores, retail stores and at http://www.newyorkcolor.com, $1.99
NYC

Sometimes You Gotta Mix ‘Em Up….

24 Mar

imageIn the glamour world, very few things stand alone. Oh sure, you can have that über gorgeous red carpet dress that turns the heads of every status photographer on the runway, but the fact remains that the hair, makeup, jewels and shoes all play a part in that outfit being a front page headline.

That simple fact can also play a part in everyday looks for anyone. Whether you are a 9-5 office worker, a stay-at-home mom, an ever-scouting fad writer or an out there/have-your-own-style tattoo shop manager, layering fashions, accessories, skin care ingredients and makeup items can move a simple daytime look into the WOW! category with a couple of easy steps.

Here are a few to get you started. Following the bouncing ball:

image**Skin Care**-Washing, treating and moisturizing are, nowadays, the bare necessities. If you AT LEAST do that? You’ll hold your ground. But why not combine a few skin-loving ingredients to treat your face to an experience that will multitask with just a few natural, easy to find things. Because my face tends to be a bit dry in the winter, I tend to make my own cleanser/masks to get moisture and anti-aging properties from natural ingredients for the best results. It’s actually simple…

1. Combine 2 tbsp of a mashed overripe banana, 1 tsp raw honey (local is best), 1 tsp heavy cream, 1/2 tsp instant coffee & 1/4 tsp white sugar. (This may sound like a lot, but think ahead: you can freeze extra overripe bananas in the freezer, buy the instant coffee once to use in other things as well, and substitute powdered milk for heavy cream for longer shelf life.)

2. Mix all your ingredients EXCEPT the sugar till the consistency is a bit thick and the coffee has dissolved. Then add the sugar last.

3. Begin to rub it onto your face in small, circular motions. Go over it a few times, adding a bit more each time.

4. After about 5-10 minutes, wash off with warm water & a gentle cleanser (like Aveeno’s Foaming Face Wash)

5. Pat dry.

Whala! Instant face treatment with a combo of fresh ingredients. Your skin is clean, moist, soft and treated. Easy mixing, right? Now, let’s think about what you just did: *Bananas naturally cleanses while hydrating & adding anti-aging vitamins into your skin; *Raw honey is a natural healer and will help heal fines lines due to small skin cracks and stretching; *Heavy cream is loaded with moisturizers and antibodies to fight infection and environmental skin damage; *Instant coffee has just enough caffeine to constrict blood vessels, even your skin tone and awaken tired skin; *White sugar is a gentle exfoliant that will remove dead skin cells and allow the other ingredients to work on the next active layer.

Kind of all makes sense, huh? It’s not a lot of work and if you refrigerate the leftovers you can use what is left daily for up to a week. There are so many ingredients you can add or substitute if you want other skin problems targeted. Tip: Don’t like the way the bananas turn brown in the fridge? Use Stage 1 baby food bananas. They last longer, don’t turn brown and the little bit of lemon juice that is in them helps even out your skin tone too. Baby peaches are good to soften skin. Oatmeal powder can reduce pore size. Yogurt has natural bacteria to help fight acne and breakouts. (Click here for other ingredients and recipes that can help your skin type.)

image**Mascara**-Any YouTube video will tell you that you should wear between 8-10 coats of mascara for drop dead looking eyes. Ummmm… no offense? I don’t have time for that. And it never looks like the pictures anyways. So what’s my layering trick for great, long lashes? It’s kind of simple and doesn’t need a lot stuff. But you will need 3 different mascaras:

1. Get a good mascara that has a great comb wand. This will enable you to coat each lash for length and keep them separated. Plus you can get the little innie lashes with a pointed brush. My go to brand? Benefit Cosmetics “They’re Real!” Mascara. (Sephora, $24)

2. Next, when mascara is completely dry, curl them with a eyelash curler. None specifically, just make sure you are comfortable using it and it doesn’t pinch your eyelid or pull out any lashes.

3. Another coat of mascara. This time use one that lengthens and keeps the separated but begins to add volume. Again, a good wand is important. A comb is good again but can be one whose “bristles” are tighter together. I really like Buxom Lash Mascara. It keeps them fanned with a bit of thickness. (Sephora, $19)

4. Last step? One coat of a thick foofy brushed waterproof mascara. Lock in that look and keep your butterfly eyes looking smudge-proof all day. There are always new ones on the market and I try them before mine dry out and get old, but I’ve always had great success with Lancôme’s Waterproof Hypnose Drama Mascara.

Don’t get scared away by my suggestions of department store brands. I have had great success as well with drugstore brands such as Rimmel’s Scandal’Eyes Show Off Mascara, Lash Sensational Mascara from Maybelline, and L’Oreal Power Voluminous 24hr Mascara. Each is easy on the wallet but still layer-able to get the look you want.

image**Lips**-Maintaining a good, even lip tone with color, gloss, or both will take a little getting used to. The fact is, I don’t have time all day to constantly reapply an entire color routine on my lips. And between chatting all day and drinking coffee, it stays everywhere but on my lips. It has taken some time to get a good routine down, to maintain a lip look that will only need a touch up now and then. But you’ve got to trust me to play with this till you get the look/color you want. Ready?:

1. Exfoliate your lips with 2-3 drops of olive oil and a pinch of white sugar. Dab it on your lips then roll them back and forth so the oil penetrates and the sugar takes off any dry skin. Wipe off excess sugar with a tissue and blot excess oil.

2. Outline your lips with a neutral lip pencil. A great find is Rimmel 1000 Kisses Lasting Finish Pencil Lip Liner in Nude or Avon’s Glimmersticks Lip Liners in Simply Spice or Pink Cashmere.

3. Next time you are shopping, hunt and find a packet of unsweetened Pink Lemonade Kool-Aid and/or Cherry Kool-Aid (if you find other flavors, grab them. They are pennies and can be combined for great shades.) Using a Q-tip, dot a little bit of the powders on your lips, combining to achieve the color you want. If you have to add a drop of water to the other end of the Q-tip to help blend, that’s fine. Just add evenly so you don’t have one lip one color, one lip another. When done, let sit & dry for about 5 min. (If you prefer to just use one flavor, that’s fine too.)

4. Using a lip brush, apply a small amount of a good balm or gloss to keep lips soft. I prefer a balm, as glosses can get oily and transfer more easily giving your color less stay power. My fave right now? Chapstick’s Cake Batter formula. Yum! If you like a bit of frost to your shade, Nivea has a “Kiss of Shimmer Radiant Lip Care” which tops off for a nice, long-lasting sexy frosty shade while keeping lips soft & smooth.

5. Carry a gloss with you that matches today’s Kool-Aid shade in case of early fading or blotchiness or for an extra hint of colored shine.

If a stain isn’t your thing, try to find a ONE STEP lipstick with mega-stay power to keep your lips bright & soft. It won’t last as long but will buy you time in between lip breaks. A good find for me? New York Color Expert Last Lipstick. I find it lasts longer than any tube lipstick I own and the price is a steal.

So there you have it. Layering to get the look you love and the stopping the clock of aging. (Okay, not really but we can sure try to slow it down!) Good luck with these suggestions and please–PLEASE!–share if you have any of your own!

Next time? I think we will tackle eye liners, sweaters and….let me think on it.

Once, Twice, Three Times with Sassy…

17 Feb

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Without researching, I would be willing to say that there are over a million different makeup, skin care, hair and nail products on the market. That doesn’t even include the various colors and formulas of many of them. It is not easy for a company to get a consumer to buy a product once. The money they put into television and print advertising is beyond comprehension. Now, to hold the customer’s interest with eye-catching displays, money-saving deals, and quality results in order to get them to be a repeat customer is pretty amazing. After that, it’s a crap shoot. The cosmetic company now hopes they have gained your loyalty and business. They hope you love it so much that you would not even consider shopping out the product and buy it a third time—THAT is a cosmetic company’s dream come true, and an accomplishment beyond words.

I can totally relate to this as a glamour junkie. Commercials, displays, magazine ads and samples could literally get me to jump the fence on almost anything I use with the right tactics. Even if I’m thrilled with the product I am currently using, I can justify in my head and heart to try something else, even if it’s just once. But really… isn’t that what the cosmetic companies want? Just a chance? They know I’ll either say, “Wow, this is the best xxx I have ever used! Why haven’t I been using this before? I’ll never use anything else ever again!” Or I will give it an immediate thumbs down, kick myself for being a traitor to the product I had been using before, beg for glamour forgiveness and go back to using the one I had loved all along. Not to mention, with me winning contest prizes, getting products to try or review, or sending away for samples for me to try on my own, I’m always getting “teased” with things that are new, improved or could be better. That’s what the companies are hoping for. Some times, I admit, it works. But for a few products, I won’t even bother to deviate. I stick with what I love. Not just once, or even twice…. but have bought them three times or more because to me, they far exceed anything else I have tried or tested. I have found they truly are my favorites at what they do.

So what are these heart stealers that have shown me that “third time’s a charm”? Here are my ultimate favorite products that you will always find somewhere in my beauty ensemble, either in my drawers or on my vanity:

OleFoam**Ole Henriksen’s African Red Tea Foaming Cleanser** – Having sensitive skin has made finding the perfect cleanser difficult for me. I want something that washes my face, fights aging and doesn’t strip it of its natural oils, drying out my skin. I have tried a LOT of cleansers, I fell in love with Ole’s African Red Tea Foaming Cleanser after their customer service department sent me a sample because I thanked them for their “Three Little Wonders” box set I got for a holiday gift one year, which stole my heart. The cleanser immediately became my favorite face wash. My skin felt and looked noticeably healthier, it didn’t irritate or make my skin burn, and the foaming formula really made it so you didn’t need a ton. Plus, in combination with Ole’s other products I had, I really noticed an overall improvement in my face’s skin. I have been using the African Red Tea cleanser pretty consistently for over two years now. Even though I have tried a sample of other cleansers here and there, I always use Ole’s at least once a day. Happy to say, I’m on my fourth bottle! (Available at Sephora, $30)

BurtsBeesHandCream**Burt’s Bees Almond Milk Beeswax Hand Cream** – I never used to be a hand cream kind of girl. I never had to be. My hands never got dry, cuticles were healthy and I had no problems. Then came this year. I don’t what changed but my cuticles turned into corn flakes, my hands felt dry and the tops of my hands looked…old !!(*GASP!*). Oh no, no, no. My years in the cosmetic and skin care industry taught me that your eyes and your hands can tell people your age better than your driver’s license can. The minute I felt my hands drying out, I went looking for something good. I tried several simple “squeeze” lotions for my hands, but they didn’t seem to keep them moist for too long. Burt’s Bees caught my eye because of the Almond Milk in the name. I love the scent of almonds and know that almond oil is fabulous for moisturizing skin naturally. The beeswax is perfect to lock it into the skin and really keeps the hands, nails and cuticles soft. And the scent is to die for! I just dove into my third jar last night—and I’ve only been using it since November! (Available at most drugstores, $9)

TreeHut**Tree Hut Brazillian Nut Shea Body Butter** – The more natural you can keep your health and beauty products, the better they are for your body. I have always turned to almond or coconut oil to keep my body soft after a bath. In the colder months, however, I need something a bit more rich when my skin begins to get dry and itchy. I saw a review for Tree Hut’s Body Butter on a review site once, and remembered seeing the product at my regular retail store, so I thought I would look into it a bit more. It had my two favorite natural moisturizers that I love in it: shea butter and cocoa butter. In addition, it also contained Brazil nut and safflower seed oil, both rich in vitamins and antioxidants which help to keep the skin healthy. The smell is divine… like a yummy latte from your favorite coffee shop! I like the fact that it is not a liquid or a lotion—it is a solid “butter” which goes on thick and melts into the skin. This leaves the skin soft and moisturized for a long time. Since I first discovered this about four years ago, I have purchased at least six jars of this gem. Currently I have one in my bathroom AND bedroom! (Available at some local retailers or drugstore.com, $7.49)

NYCliner**New York Color Waterproof Eyeliner Pencil** – Eyeliners are a dime a dozen. I’ve seen some liners as cheap as 99 cents and some as expensive as $30. It is not too difficult for me to describe what I want in an eyeliner. The problem is… finding it. I want a DARK black pencil that I can sharpen myself so I can get a crisp, tight line. It has to be soft enough to go on with ease but tough enough to not smudge or run. And it has to last—I mean LAST ALL DAY last. Shouldn’t be too hard to find, right? Ha, that’s you think. I have tried so many liners over the years, it’s crazy. The fact is I’ll probably continue to try different liners, depending on the look I am going for. But if someone said I had to grab ONE liner to use for the rest of my life? I’d take NYC’s Waterproof Eyeliner. It can sharpened to a good point, soft enough not to tug at my eyes, cry-proof, rain-proof, sweat-proof and even swim-proof. It. Stays. Put. No smudging, no running. Even though I have tried gels, liquids, minerals and kohl liners for different looks, my go-to everyday no-fail eyeliner will always be NYC’s. Oh, and by the way? It won’t drain your wallet. And that is always a plus! (Available at Walmart & other retailers, $3.99)

I can’t deny that I don’t like to try new things. I’m a girl. It’s not just my nature but it’s also my job! There is nothing wrong with seeing what is out there. What is good for me may not be good for you. And what is good for you might just be what I am looking for! Times and styles are constantly changing so it is expected that cosmetics are going to change right along with it. These items I mentioned might be my go-to products for what I am looking for right now, but who knows if they will even be available in a year! I’d like to hope so, but in case they aren’t, I need to keep track of what other options are out there in case I need to switch. But today?…I am pretty content with these products for their specific purpose and will love ‘em till they are gone!

How about you? I am sure you have a couple of “must have” items of your own. No matter what else is out there, you will use them regardless of the competition. Are they makeup items—a favorite lipstick color? A blush? What about skin care—an eye cream? A moisturizer? Maybe it’s a nail polish remover. Or a can’t-live-without hairspray. Let me know what items are staples in your routine and I’ll let you know if I agree!

The “Eyes” Have It!

19 Apr

Today, I got the glorious experience (said with sheer cynicism) to visit my eye doctor for my bi-yearly checkup. Because of meds I’m on and health conditions, it’s important for me to go every 6-9 months. I feel bad. You see, my eye doctor is my favorite doctor of them all (and I have quite a few). I’ve known him for over 23 years and he’s seen me through my marriages, babies, radio talk shows, sports, and now my blogging. He makes me smile, and I like to make him laugh. It’s good to have that kind of rapport with your doctor.

When he asked about my blogging today, I was excited to tell him I had my own domain name now. I’m my own “dot com” I boasted. Oh, he thought that was the cat’s meow. He wrote down the website to check it out and everything. I don’t what learning about Springtime accessorizing or the which all-day lip color would be best for him on rainy days, but I’m not one to turn away any of my fans. So, in honor of my favorite eye doctor, I will tell my Fashionistas fans the best way to wear your eye makeup when going to the eye doctor for a full appointment.

Most doctors will tell you not to wear any eye makeup at all, and in all honesty, they are right. But you see there are a few of us who can’t leave the house without our “face” on. So certain things you need to be aware of.


Let’s start with mascara. Waterproof, waterproof, waterproof. Don’t wear anything that is going to make your lashes too thick or will make it difficult to look comfortably in the little eye testie things. Plus after all the air poofing, dying your whites orange then jamming the blue rod into your eye, I guarantee you’ll be tearing. (Excited yet?) So you’ll want them to look great, natural and not smudge or run. Sassy’s Suggestion: Maybelline Volum’ Express One-By-One coats each lash without clumping, running or blotching. It keeps them looking nice and natural–for a long time!

Want some line to define? This is actually the product that can cause the most damage to your look–it gets wet, smudged and runny. Find a good eyeliner that claims to either be 24 hour or waterproof. My recommendation? I would use a liner that you sharpen yourself. There tends to be a bit more wax in them, keeping them on longer, and more resistant to water, drops or tears. Try avoiding lining the waterlines on your eyes too. It won’t last while everyone is poking around there. Make a nice crisp line along your bottom and top lashes, feathering the liner in between the lashes for a slightly bolder color. Sassy’s Suggestion: NYC New York Color Waterproof Eyeliner Pencil. It’s soft enough to go on without tugging the delicate area, but stays put while giving you that deep smooth color you want to outline your eyes!

Now, how about just a LITTLE color? Your eye doctor really doesn’t want to see your eye makeup looking like you want to leave his office and tear up the dance floor at Studio 54. Since everyone will have their hands on and in your eyes, you want to put on ONE neutral color so it won’t look a paint swatch mess when they are done, with maybe just a thin line of a darker color in the same family across the top lid and along the bottom lashes. Don’t use any eye shadow primer… the fewer the chemicals near your eyes, the better. And leave the glitter and sparkle for the after 5pm dinners. Plus you don’t want your eye techie digging out flecks the whole time. Sassy’s Suggestion: Maybelline Eye Studio Color Explosion in Caffeine. A nice neutral shade that will still give your eyes a bit of “wow”.

So there you have it…. 20/20 vision with no problems (except your pupils will be the size of dinner plates for a while) and eye makeup that stood up through it all. It will probably be the hardest makeup to keep on under the most extreme conditions so if you can still leave the office looking fabulous, you, my Fashionista friend, have done YOUR job and done it well. Congrats!

Marvelous Finds In March

14 Apr

My husband just asked me what today’s date was. I honestly had to pull up the calendar app on my iPhone because, frankly, I had no clue. Time seems to have stood still for me because no matter what I am writing—a check, a bill, a letter, a gym excuse my for my kids—I have been putting down “March” on everything. Then it dawned on me when my husband had me check today’s date that I had been writing the wrong date for several weeks. Maybe it is because it just doesn’t feel like spring too much here in Upstate New York yet. Maybe it’s because all of the days feel the same to me lately. My guess? If I refuse to write the real date, life will slow down. Yeah, well, not so much.

So since I am already two weeks behind for all of my April writings, I figured I better chime in quick with my awesome March discoveries before I get them confused with April’s. If I don’t watch myself, I will be writing that my latest fashion find in July was a pair of cashmere gloves. Without further adieu, here are a couple of things that I added to my glamour and fashion collection during March that you may want to look into as well:

1. Grape Seed Oil— I have never hid the fact that I think that several natural oils are fabulous for medicinal, nutritive and moisturizing purposes. Grape seed oil is derived when the light oil is extracted from the seeds of several different kinds of grapes. Mainly, the seeds left over from making wine are used for this purpose. It is wonderful when the oil is used for cosmetics and skin care because the natural anti-oxidants and age-fighting properties found in grapes then get transferred directly onto the skin. Grape seed oil has a built-in astringent quality so it is great for naturally tightening the skin. It also contains linoleic acid which is known for cell repair and renewal, keeping skin at its most youthful state. And finally, because it is a lightweight oil, it is easily and quickly absorbed into the skin providing excellent moisturization—even around the delicate eye area—without clogging pores. I now use grape seed oil every night before bed to moisturize my face and neck, with a little shot on my cuticles as well. My skin has never been so soft and smooth! Available at most supermarkets in the organic oils section

2. NYC (New York Color) Waterproof Eyeliner Pencil— A while back, I had found a great sharpen yourself eyeliner that I insisted would be the pencil I would use for the rest of my life. It wasn’t a big, well-known brand and I could only get it at one store locally. Yeah, well, that changed when I saw the display with my eyeliners in it wearing a big “Clearance” sign on it last month. Damn. Time to start hunting once again. While shopping at my local Wal-Mart one day, I saw a big display for the NYC brand. They had an extensive variety of products and colors at a price that was more than reasonable. I liked the fact they had a waterproof eyeliner that was the kind you sharpen yourself, which is the only kind I will use. After using it only once, I knew it was my new favorite liner. It was soft, easy to apply, and had superb stay power. The color was true and still sharp and strong even when it was time to take it off at night! For those who like these kind of liners, this is a must try. Available at many local retails for less than $4

3. mark Save The Day Anti-Acne Concealer Stick— I wish I could take the credit for discovering this item, but all the love has to go to my daughter. She has often asked me if I knew of any acne-treatment companies that also made a concealer that would hide a stubborn pimple while treating it as well. To be honest, it really wasn’t my department. I am the queen of the dry skin, not really a breakout princess. But after doing a bit of research, I saw that mark. had a product that was just what she was looking for. Not only does the concealer stick contains 2% salicylic acid to treat the culprit, but it also comes in four medium-coverage, buildable shades. This little item has become a cult favorite with her friends as all of them love how it hides and treats little flare ups at the same time. Available at Avon.com and through local Avon representatives for $6.

4. Steve Madden’s Shelbi Wedge Sandal— Okay, here’s the story behind this purchase: I had won a gift card from DSW during the holidays. I thought it would be fun to buy a pair of peep-toed boots when they went on sale after the holidays. When the pair I liked arrived at my house, I realized I didn’t like them at all. By this point, it was March and the thought of buying boots was silly and I knew I really should look for a pair of sandals instead. So I went to my local DSW store, returned the boots, and tried on anything and everything that caught my eye. Originally I shied away from wedges because… well…. they just didn’t jazz me. HA! That was until I tried on these little cuties! The heel isn’t too high (2” stacked wedge), they were comfortable as heck and they looked chic and stylish! I grabbed a pair in black. The weather around here finally allowed me to wear them for a full day this week. My feet loved them as much as my eyes. A perfect shoe to wear with jeans, capris or shorts! I love them so much, I think I’ll grab them in the color taupe sometime in the near future. Available at DSW retail stores and DSW.com for $49.95



I think I can finally say that spring is beginning to show itself after a long, hard winter. People are breaking out their bright colors, packing up the heavy sweaters and coats, and everyone is sporting the fashions and glamour of the new season. But as April evolves, are we serious when we say that the dark, cold gloom that hung its head over us for so long must surely gone? Well, if we listen to the gospel of the late Leslie Nielsen from the ever-popular movie Airplane, we would believe it one hundred percent:

“I am serious. And don’t call me Shirley.”