Tag Archives: tattoos

Destiny….

9 Nov

img_1662“Destiny is not a matter of chance; it is a matter of choice. It is not a thing to be waited for, it is a thing to be achieved.” ~ William Jennings Bryan

Webster’s Dictionary tells us what the word destiny means:
destiny (noun) des·ti·ny \ˈdes-tə-nē\
Simple Definition of destiny
: what happens in the future
: the things that someone or something will experience in the future
: a power that is believed to control what happens in the future

William Jennings Bryan explains simply that destiny doesn’t just happen… you make it happen. And I couldn’t agree more. Especially right now.

I’ve made a lot of changes in my life over the past year. (Oh trust me, I AM writing a book!) I have always taken full responsibility for everything that has gone on, even though I know it has created changes that not everyone is happy with. I just felt it was time to actively pursue my dream of writing professionally, taking some chances and risks, traveling when I needed to expand things, and really putting myself out there. It is so easy to stay where things are comfortable, but nothing changes if nothing changes. So I took on a new mindset, pushed myself to my absolute physical limits and set out to achieve my dreams. But out of the mouths of the band, Dr. Hook:

“But our minds won’t really get blown
Like the blow that’ll getcha
When you get your picture
On the cover of the Rolling Stone.”

So, is that what I wanted? Is that what I did? Am I on a rock star magazine? Well, not really. As a fashion writer, the cover of the Rolling Stone isn’t someplace I’d normally end up on the cover of anyways. In my own mind, I know I am a rock star, but that’s just me. I’m not a performer, I’m a writer. A fashion and glamour writer at that. And in addition to that, I love the tattoo industry. I love interacting with the people at the shop I help out at. I am in awe of their talent as well as the reasons why people want their personal tattoos. So it would probably be more of a dream to see my name on the front of a magazine that has to do with my passion of fashion and glamour as well as tattoos.

Recently, I added on to a large tattoo that has been a work in progress for some time now. Where it is right now is absolutely gorgeous, but I know that there is more to come. It will look amazing! I decided to take a photo of my updated tattoo which matches a large tattoo I got several years ago. I lInked how they looked together and posted it on Instagram. I will admit, it was a bit risqué for me. I might be a “girl next door” but I am definitely a shy girl next door (most of the time). Well, to say the least, the photo blew up. Magazines saw it, Instagram followers saw it, other artists saw it. It went pretty big pretty fast. I was a little surprised that this “32+” mom had such a reaction to her photo, but it was very cool.

Soon after the post, I received a message from the founder of one of the select magazines I had tagged in my photo. He liked it. He liked it a lot! It wasn’t just my tattoos that caught his eye, though. It was the fact that I was a writer. He liked that this sassy, fierce redhead had somewhat established herself in the writing world. I took some time to see what he was looking for in regards to the magazine. He wanted someone to talk fashion—about what is hot right now, the trends that are going on. Well that’s me all day! I’m always in the know with fashion, not just for me but for my blog. After a crunch time of getting an article and bio done, I showed him I could do it. And so it came to be:

Sassy Auburn is the new
Fashion Editor for
Sweet and Inked Magazine!!img_1664

Pretty awesome, huh? You won’t miss me here, don’t worry…I’m not going anywhere. In fact, I will be linking some of my other articles from Sweet and Inked to here as well. I will also share some tattoo photos with fashion styles that are great right now. Some things I’ll talk about will even be able to show off some of people’s favorite tattoo pieces.

I’ve been been kind of pinching myself since the issue was released, but I have to say that I couldn’t be happier as well as more fortunate to be working in an industry that embraces both of my loves. There are still things to do and room to grow, but I’m excited for the ride.

So, my loyal and faithful Sassinistas… you are lucky. You some of the first people to learn of my new endeavor! Feel free to talk to me about all things on here from fashion to ink. And don’t worry—I will make sure to keep you up to date on just fashion and glamour goodies on my blog still.

Keep an eye out for me in the tattoo community and follow me in Sweet and Inked as well! I look forward to sharing my adventures with every one of you!

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Fab Finds in June…

4 Jul

imageWelcome to summer, Sassinistas! Sun, warmth, cool shades, top down, shorts up. What a great time of year. Although the elements can be somewhat unpredictable–ranging from warm to very hot, dry to oppressive humidity, sunshine to thunderstorms–this doesn’t have to stop us from looking our best at any time in any weather. In June, I was lucky enough to stumble upon some great “must haves” that aren’t just perfect, but also have extra punch on these warm days when keeping your look fabulous is more difficult. You may want to check these summer-friendly items out:

imageModel in a Bottle: This is one of those items I stumbled upon at The Makeup Show in NYC. I knew I wanted to try it as soon as one of the speakers said it was a must have for anyone wanting an all day look that stayed put. When I spoke to the Model in a Bottle company, they were very generous to send me a full-size bottle to try. There are days when I start at 8 am and don’t stop till midnight. From running around at the tattoo shop, handling personal appointments, meeting with clients and prospective recruiters, then finishing my night spinning fire with my local fire jammer, some days can be day non-stop. Other than refreshing my lipstick occasionally, I don’t have a whole lot of time to do big touch ups or even redo my makeup look completely. Model in a Bottle is simple but great! A few spritzes on my face with my eyes closed for a few seconds and my look gets locked in with all-day hold. No eyeshadow creasing or glitter fallout, stay-put blush and steadfast foundation… for almost 24 hours! I can see how models would need something like this is for a photo shoot but even simple glamouristas like me find this to be a necessity. No matter what life throws at you (including surprise weather changes!), Model in a Bottle will keep you looking amazing all day and night.
modelinabottle.com, $18.00
(This is also available in a sensitive skin formula too, but my easily irritable skin had no problem with the original formula!)

imageEye Kandy Glitter: Although I am an independent fashion & glamour writer, living the simple life in a loft around a historic area of NY, that doesn’t mean I still don’t love anything fancy, frilly, glittery and sparkly. I still adore my sequined tops, shimmery shoes, and sparkly makeup. This was another “must have” Makeup Show item that I fell in love with as soon as I tried it on at the show. With 60 colors available, this makeup item it great alone or over your favorite shadows for a dramatic, dimensional look. What I love about this glitter is it goes on with a specially designed brush and an adhesive made with liquid sugar that creates a strong hold without harsh chemicals around the eyes. Use the different degrees of fine grinds to give you a soft, all over shimmer or use it only on certain areas of the eyes for a look that makes your eyes pop. I’m still experimenting but I already know I’m in love with this product! With my circle of activities, glitter is something I will always feel I need. Eye Kandy gives me endless colors and combos for a bold eye look!
eyekandycosmetics.com, $24.95 for a complete starter set with one color glitter; additional glitters are $7.50 each.

imageTarte’s tartiest lash paint mascara: Usually when you hear the term “lash paint” you expect to find a coloring lash gel that just gives your a hint of color. Not Tarte’s. This mascara is made from black pigments that nourish the lashes while it coats them with a glossy volumizing formula. The soft yet defining brush coats each lash giving them a 2700%+ increase in volume. Plus the formula is super water resistant which helps keep your lashes strong all day without smudging or flaking. When I wear this mascara, one rich coat then a hit with the eyelash curler gives me the look of full, fake lashes! If I DO decide to wear false eye lashes? This mascara is great for an extra level of oomph to coat them. This may actually be a mascara that I will have no hesitation buying again…. it’s that good for what I want!!
tartecosmetics.com, $23.00

imageLumene Bright Now Vitamin C Sleeping Cream: I found this product through a campaign from Influenster. They gave me a coupon to try out a Lumene product then tell them what I thought. I had purchased other Lumene products way back in my blogging days, but my favorite product–an eye makeup remover–was no longer available at my local drugstore so I strayed from the brand. With a two coupons in hand, I hit the store again with not even an idea of what I may want to try. While looking at the limited amount of products they had, I did find this little gem. I have my daytime skincare routine down, but my evening routine was lacking just a bit. I have a great serum I use faithfully but I wasn’t happy with the evening moisturizers I had tried. This one had specific things I knew were important to my skin: it contains Vitamin C to help brighten my skin during cell renewal overnight; essential oils such as sweet almond, cloudberry seed, olive, and sunflower seed to provide anti-aging hydration; and hyaluronic acid to bind and retain water for maximum moisture to reduce the signs of fatigue and fine lines. All that in one nighttime moisturizer?… that didn’t irritate my sensitive skin? Perfecto! So far I have noticed a great difference with my skin being firmer, softer and definitely brighter in the mornings–almost to the point where I can use very little foundation for an even look. Just what my skin needs!
Walgreens, $18.49

imageGarage Cold Shoulder Bodycon Top: Working in a tattoo shop gives me the opportunity to get some great ink done by my fabulous artists. One piece, currently a work in progress, is a beautiful arrangement of roses and vines that was inspired by a picture taken by someone close to me. It took me a long time to get up the nerve to do something on my arms. I knew if I did, this would pretty much put the nail in on ever working in corporate America ever again. I was already writing for “fun” but as soon as my first article was published for money, I knew I had found my calling. At that point, I didn’t care where my tattoos were and how many I had. I was now a professional writer! So now I have great tattoos to show off and I need a way to do it with a little fashion sense. That is what is great about “peek-a-boo” shoulder tops. You can show a bit of skin without looking unbecoming, enabling you to jazz them up with accessories to fit your mood. These tops are simple, great fitting and come in go-with-anything colors. Find them online (with a coupon code) or in a store near you!
Garage Clothing, $19.99

imageNo Boundries Junior Crochet Shorts: It is definitely shorts weather, and the style that’s in right now is the crocheted look. These pretty, feminine style bottoms come in several colors and sizes and can be dressed up for a casual dinner out or dressed down for a laid-back breezy feel at a picnic. It is a no-brainer that if you need to keep cool but stay classy on a warm day, this is a great fashion item to have close by. Me? I got them specifically for one reason: I plan on wearing them with two chained/charmed black scarves tied at the hip that will will be perfect for jingling when I perform with my hula hoop or for fire spinning. Sexy, reasonable and very comfortable!
Walmart, $9.88

So let’s welcome July (safely!) wth a bang and get ready to rock the summer. Sassy has A LOT going on in the next few months so you are going to want to stay in touch to get all the details of what adventures I’ll be taking. All of this will be new to me so I can only imagine how a fashionista will make this happen with style. Am I worried? Hell no. I can flash my style anywhere, anytime! Do you have any plans for the summer? How are you going to style them up? Let me know! I’d love to hear about your adventures and how YOU rocked them!!

Sassy Gets Her Name In Print…..

18 Jul

imageSince becoming a blogger, product reviewer and general freelance writer, seeing my (or Sassy’s) name on the Internet doesn’t carry the same excitement that it once did. Oh don’t get me wrong… if I get ANYTHING published ANYWHERE, I am proud as punch and I get pretty excited. But when your name (spelled correctly too!) gets in print in a national beauty magazine?…. that’s the freaking BOMB!

…… and that’s exactly what happened to me today.

About three years ago, a big fashion mag wanted to use a letter I had wrote them in an upcoming issue. They even called me to fact check my name and info. I walked around on cloud nine for two months waiting to see this small-town girl’s name in one of THE biggest glam rags of all time! When the issue came out, I read it cover to cover, inch by inch. Nothing. I even called the editor thinking I was reading the wrong issue. Nope. No luck. “Sorry…..we had to edit for space and your piece had to go.” Wow. Tossed aside like a bad piece of lettuce. I was crushed. I was back to being just a reader and not a contributor. It SUCKED! But did I quit? Hellz no! I kept on writing.

Two months ago, I received an email from Allure Magazine regarding a collection of articles I had wrote in my blog about tattoos, their care and a tattoo expo I had recently attended. They liked a reference I had made in a post in relation to an article Allure had just done on moles and beauty marks, and wanted to use my comments in their letters section. I said “Sure!” and gave them the information they needed. Oh, I was thrilled, but I had been let down before so I shielded my enthusiasm in case I got “cut” once again.

Today, the August issue of Allure came in my mailbox and I couldn’t help gasping as I thought maybe–just maybe–this would be my chance to have my name on magazine stands across America. With shaky hands, I began to flip each page. One, after another, after another, after another. When I got to the letters section, my stomach dropped as I saw my name was no where to be found on the page. I looked up and down, left to right, at least a dozen time. *sigh* Screwed over again. Unless… unless…. maybe they carried the letters on to the next page? I held my breath as I turned the page calmly, like a slow-motion action scene from a Bruce Willis movie.

…and there it was. My letter in all its glory with my name and little home town plastered right under it. It was exact, it was quoted perfectly, and everything was spelled right! Me–Sassy!–in black & white on the pages of one of my all-time favorite magazines. I felt like a star! I don’t care who saw (or didn’t see) it…I knew it was there and I knew it was my experience and my writing. I did it!

So, for those of you who aren’t sure if you should stick with what you love to do–or wonder if you should give up on your goal or dream–from the mouth of experience….don’t. You do not have to give up everything to follow your heart, but you must do a little something every day to pursue it. Whatever it is. Cook something, paint something, sing something, build something. WRITE SOMETHING! Keep your dream alive and close to your heart…

And never, ever let it go!!

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(If you would like to see my letter, grab the August issue of Allure magazine at your favorite store or newsstand. Or, for you gadget gurus, download this issue from the App Store.)

Inking Up May!…

10 May

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For the month of May, I am going to be doing most of my writing about tattoos. I was invited to the Saratoa Tattoo Expo, Friday through Sunday as a VIP. Jeff at Spaulding & Rogers Mfg. and Spaulding’s Tattoo World (the sponsors) hooked me up great to allow me to see what “this side” of the color and design phenom was all about. Plus I thought this would be an odd but necessary connection between the skin care, fashion and art lines. So why did I decide to do this? Many reasons. For one, I love getting new ink! A lot of people who have tats say the pain is almost addicting. Since the weather is getting warmer, tats come out in full force too. More skin is exposed, so people are happy and proud to show off their works of art. As a child, I thought tattoos were these things that guys got when they had a girlfriend, loved their mom, or joined the service. But now tattoos are a pure, raw, unique expression of a person’s interest, desire, accomplishment, or the love of someone here or gone. Everyone has different reasons. Every tat has a different story. Each tattoo I have (and I have a few!) represents a different milestone in my life. Women are now showing off their colors, in both a statement sense as well as a fashion sense. Women’s tats are almost always beautiful. And I think this month, I will show how the world of tattooing has gone beyond just the needle & black ink.

As I talk to women of all ages who have or are getting a tattoo, their stories are never the same. Theresa, a young 20-something girl doesn’t just wear ink, she draws it. The pieces on her arms are bright, gorgeous and original, and you can almost read her personal story with each one. When I asked her why she thought just as many women were getting ink then men, she smiled. “I think it’s a power thing.” She felt that females have the ability to do, say, express whatever they want and tattoos are a great way to do that. I completely understand. Then there was Nora. What a peach! Nora didn’t get her first tattoo till she was 40. She didn’t think women should have tattoos. “Tats were for drunken men,” she told me with a grin. But on her 40th birthday she treated herself to her first tattoo. The only thing is… her son, only a 10 year-old boy at the time, insisted he go with her. An art prodigy since the age of 2, he wanted to make sure his mom’s ink was perfect. And, according to them both, it was. Her son decided that day that he was going to be a tattoo artist. That was it. Nothing else mattered. And she couldn’t be prouder. Years later, she is still getting tats on a regular basis. And her son is getting awards for his talent. She thinks it’s a great way to open up the doors of conversation that the internet, cell phones and texting have taken away. “People notice tattoos. They ask about them. They tell a story. They tell YOUR story. They start a conversation that may never have taken place.” I asked her if she was comfortable telling everything about herself when someone asked about her tats. “Absolutely. I have nothing to hide and everything to share.” She made me laugh when she said, “One day, when I’m in a nursing home, someone is going ask me ‘So tell me about yourself’ and I will start with this tattoo and show them my entire life.” I thought that was awesome.

I asked one girl who really didn’t seem like she wanted to talk too much about any thing, and especially not her tattoos. I thought I had struck some nerve when I asked if women got tattoos because it was “in” and fashionable. Suddenly, the quiet girl had a voice. “NO!,” she sternly said. “It represents who you are.” I said that fashion, in a sense, was the same–showing it off in certain way to show the kind of person you are. “NO! Fashion shows who you want to be. Tattoos ARE who you are. There’s no turning back.” Definitely a different perspective. You can’t take tattoos off like a pair of pair of GUESS jeans or a pair of Manolo Blanik shoes. It’s not just on you, it is you. And that’s way deeper than just carrying a Michael Kors bag. Way, way deeper!

So get ready for a month of tattoo talk. And PLEASE chime in. I’d love to hear your tat stories and pictures if you have any. Keep posting people. This is going to get fun!

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Sassy’s latest ink with more to come!<

Then and Now: Fashions For “Old Farts”

10 Jan

Ever since I was a teen, there have been a few things that have been a staple in my wardrobe, closet and makeup drawer. They are probably things that you cannot live without either. But as I move up in age, I notice fundamentals of these items evolving. For example, every woman needs a purse. As a young woman, my purse needed to be able to hold my money, a lip gloss and a license. That was it. When I got married and had children, my purse then had to be able to hold those items plus a travel-sized pack of baby wipes, hand sanitizer and a Ziploc bag of Cheerios. You see where I am going with this.

Even now that my kids are teens and my daily routine is totally different, I am finding that my must-have items are becoming less and less basic. At least the designers are aware of this because no matter what I need, someone seems to make it. Let’s break down my simple fashion necessities and what requirements they must have to fit my more “mature” life now:

  • PURSE

Then: Small shoulder bags in jazzy colors with one compartment were fine. Sometimes it wasn’t even necessary to carry one at all. Carrying a purse meant you could only carry one drink at the bar during 2-for-1 nights.

Now: Shoulder bags are frowned upon due to arthritis bothering the shoulders. Black or brown is fine. It must be able to hold a wallet, checkbook, ATM card, cell phone, pill box, lip balm, bottle of water and the janitor ring of keys. Extra room should be available in case there is a need to carry a small pack of tissues, datebook, two granola bars and a hair clip. Designer name not required but it helps to justify the purchase.

  • SHOES

Then: High, high, high. The more hooker-looking, the better. Brown didn’t exist, red and black patent leather were a necessity. Comfort was not even considered. Kinney’s was your go-to shoe heaven.

Now: Leather shoes work best because they stretch out and allow room for bunions. Square-toed and rounded-toed shoes work best. Pointed-toed shoes make your eyes water just looking at them. Peep toes are the new sexy. Black and brown are a must, grey or silver is now considered daring. Any shoe over 2” must have a comfort, no slip sole and a built-in cushioned arch support. Designer name not required but helps to justify the purchase.

  • JEANSjeans

Then: If your jeans weren’t tight, you returned them. Stretch jeans were best because they enhanced your figure. You lay down on the bed to put them on and you were fine with that. If you wanted them to feel snugger, you wore stockings underneath them. Acid-washed was your favorite color but anything tight would do.

Now: If your jeans are tight, you return them. Jeans must be purchased at the store because they have to be tried on—no two pairs of the same size fit the same. Stretch jeans are best because they stretch for your figure! If you have to lie down on the bed to put them on, you can expect to be there all day. Usually the classic name jeans fit best but if a designer pair fits better, then that will help to justify the purchase.

  • JEWELRY

Then: The gaudier the better. You watched Madonna and Janet Jackson videos for ideas. Your earrings were so heavy that you were told your piercing holes were about to rip through. Getting you ears double pierced was a luxury that made you the envy of your friends. Your bracelets were made of rubber. Your necklaces looked like Mardi Gras beads. If your jewelry turned body parts green, it was no big deal (that’s what clear nail polish was for.) If you didn’t get your jewelry at a “Buy One Get Two Free” sale at your local teen store, you paid too much.

Now: The shinier the better. Golds, silvers and platinums are the jewelry box trend. Styles are simpler and reflect the person wearing the pieces. Studs, hoops and chandelier earrings are most common. Necklaces are all lengths with varied pendants. Bracelets are usually flashy. If you only have your ears double pierced, you are considered white bread. Minimum of three holes in one ear (with diamond studs) is more the norm. A pierced belly button is now a common accessory at PTA meetings and soccer games. Any watch with two hands will work, but ones with diamonds have been said to keep better time so that helps to justify the purchase.

  • MAKEUP & SKINCARE80sgloss

Then: There was no such thing as the “natural look.” Foundation had to be slightly on the orange side and end right before the neck began. Lipsticks came in pink, hot pink and fuschia. Lip gloss rolled on and came in strawberry or cherry flavors. Mascara was in a pink tube made by Maybelline. Eyeliner was a foot-long pencil, was always black and always cheap. Skin care consisted of Sea Breeze pads and Noxzema in the blue jar. Moisturizer was only something you used on your hands in winter. If you went to bed with your makeup on, you knew it could save you time in the morning. Perfume was Love’s Baby Soft or Charlie.

Now: You have two looks—au natural and glam gorgeous. The natural look is earth tones from mineral powders. Chapstick with a shimmer is enough for the lips. Eyeliner is soft and smudged and mascara is minimal. The glam look is more out there. There is glitter on everything from the eyes and lips down into the cleavage. Eyeliner is blackest of blacks and mascara is thick and bold. Focus on skin care is a must. We will try anything…and everything… to avoid crow’s feet, laugh lines, wrinkles, flakes and sun damage. Paying $40 for a good moisturizer is not unusual. We look for words like Retin-A, peptides, SPF, omegas and vitamins. Our bathroom counter looks more like a spice cabinet. We go to retail stores that sell nothing but makeup and skin care, and won’t think twice about dropping a car-payment size amount of money to stay looking young. Washing your face at night takes 10+ minutes. There are perfumes everywhere that suit a person’s personal taste, but if it comes with a body lotion and shower gel sampler, a free tote bag and a pair of sunglasses, it certainly will help to justify the purchase.

  • HAIR

Then: No matter how big your hair was, it wasn’t big enough. Two cans of Aqua Net and a can of mousse per week was normal usage. Finesse shampoos and conditioners were the designer brand for routine care. Home perms were what you had done if you and your mom were bored on the weekend. If you mother refused to give you a home perm, you bought a hair crimper. You were happy with your natural hair color. That is, until June, when your locks drank Sun-In as much as you drank Iced Tea. When you realized that the Sun-In had turned your hair into dried grass, you tried to make it look stylish with either Farrah Fawcett side curl flips or a jazzy banana clip.

Now: Your monthly hair maintenance is as routine as your mortgage payment. And about as expensive. You’ve lost track of what your natural color really is because you can’t tell where the highlights begin, the lowlights end with the blending of the roots in between. Your stylist knows all about you and refers to you by name & hair color shade. (“Oh, hello Tina Redken OC8 Cayanne/Saffron!”) You can’t stand the thought of even a wave in your hair and you don’t hesitate to pay an exorbitant amount of money on a ceramic hair straightener and blow dryer to prevent any type of curl. You have bottles, tubes, cans, sprays, foams, gels, waxes and pomades in every nook and cranny of your bathroom and shower. Because your hair looks so slammin’, you save money by not buying hair clips, and that in turn helps to justify the purchases.

  • TATTOOStat

Then: You hoped the box of Cracker Jack you bought contained a tattoo that because that would have made you sooooooo cool with your friends.

Now: You are wondering where on your body you are going to put your third tattoo because your friends think you are a Cracker Jack for having less than them. You finally tell your husband you are going to get a tramp-stamp of the design on your wedding invitation tattooed on your back because it will make you feel that much closer to him. That surely will justify the purchase with him… Right?