Favorite must-have oils !

I want to quickly share with you my absolute favorite oils, that I use all the time, which are completely natural and organic. I took a bath last night and added some avocado oil to the water. Woke up this morning and my skin is still silky smooth. Slept with grape seed oil on my face, which I do once a week and ugh the results are refreshing. Woah, woah… Rubbing oil .. on your body? Eh, okay… but, on your face?! Sounds like a set up for disaster, right? Think again pretties. These natural, oil-based products help the skin stay balanced and have unbelievable results, once you try you’ll never go back. 

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Raw Coconut oil, not only good for you, but it’s one of my FAVORITE beauty treatments!

  • Great makeup remover including eye makeup
  • amazing hair conditioner… add some coconut oil to your hair after shampooing (avoiding your roots) wrap it in a small bun overnight, rise with cool water in the morning… say hi to your new beautiful, shiny, soft hair
  • Moisturizing mask for your face.. Perfect for winter time! Leave on for about 20 minutes and rise off … Instant hydration
  • Aftershave. Immediately calms and soothes skin.
  • Improves skin tone and reduced wrinkles
  • reduces appearance of stretch marks and reduces cellulite

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Grapeseed oil, found in health food stores. One of my favorite skin moisturizers. It absorbs quickly, and used a lot during professional massages/facials.

  • -High in antioxidants which helps fight free radicals from the environment that causes damage to the skin
  • -Another great eye-makeup remover. This oil breaks down mascara and moisturizes the eye at the same time.
  • -Makes eyelashes grow longer and stronger over time
  • -Protects collagen which is essential for beautiful, healthy skin.
  • -Anti-aging properties helping you fight off the aging process
  • -Helps repair scars

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Acocado Oil is such a pure, beneficial way to treat and nourish your skin effectively.

  • -Add to baths for soft skin
  • -Penetrates skin deeply making it an excellent moisturizer
  • -Protects against and reduces wrinkles
  • -Also helps heals scars
  • -Minimizes pores
  • -Contains a natural SPF
  • -Perfect use for mature skin
  • -Reduces blemishes

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Sesame seed oil is rich in antioxidants and pulls toxins from your skin.

  • -Prevents against blackheads
  • -Fades dark spots
  • -Great to leave on face overnight
  • -Antioxidant
  • -antibacterial
  • -Lather this oil onto your feet and wear clean white socks to help soften your feet
  • -natural barrier that protects skin and hair from smoke

Here is one of my favorite beauty cocktails 🙂

  1. 1/2 cup sesame seed oil
  2. 1/4 cup of apple cider vinegar
  3. 1/4 cup water

This will make your skin GLOW! 

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Dr. Alkaitis Oil a calming, holistic facial oil sent to me to try & review. In LOVE with this oil, I use it every other night on my face.

  • -Cleans up blemishes
  • -Plumps up skin
  • -Leaves skin glowing
  • -All ingredients used are edible and 100% natural and organic.
  • -Refreshes skin
  • -Helps skin maintain a healthy balance

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Couldn’t do without my tea tree oil! I like to lather my face in tea tree oil and then steam my face. It opens up my pores and cleans everything out.

  • -Kills bacteria
  • -Antibacterial product that gets rid of acne
  • -Treats sunburn
  • -Reduces inflammation
  • -Organic and natural causing no side effects
  • -Helps dry skin, one of my main products in my shampoo!

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I officially replaced shaving cream with this extra virgin olive oil. Olive oils work as an intense moisturizer. I wouldn’t use this on your face because it can clog pores (it’s thick), but it is amazing for your body. Shave your legs with olive oil and you’ll see exactly what I’m talking about. This can relieve and heal dry skin, eczema and psoriasis. It soothes the skin and makes your legs feel silky smooth without feeling oily after shaving 🙂

Happy Friday! Off to do makeup this weekend.. Everyone have a great weekend!

me1

XO!

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GIVE BIG! SHOP SMALL, SHOP LOCAL!

Hello beauties! I don’t usually do posts on Tuesdays, but waking up this morning to a light snow fall, with my house fully decked out in Christmas decor, definitely put me in the Holiday spirit and inspired me to do a post. This holiday season, I’m feeling some changes. In my business of blogging, being an artist in the makeup industry, organizing events, etc. it can become a bit tiring focusing on things all the time. Things you may ask? By things, I mean the perfect gift guides, the what do i wear to holiday parties, and the latest little must-haves whether it be the hottest new makeup pallets, tools for my kit, or gifts for friends and family. It can become over exhausting financially and physically. So I decided to change things up a bit, and do things a little differently this year. When holiday shopping, I’m choosing to make an important investment in our community! From interesting, brilliant crafted products to original, personal services, my experiences at my favorite small businesses leave me pleased constantly. I’ve met some incredible and inspiring self employed, business owners who are inspiring me to do this post. 
 
GIVE BIG! SHOP SMALL, SHOP LOCAL!
 
Now obviously big businesses are essential to our economy too, since they of course employ locally and give back to the communities, so I’m definitely not trying to bash the big guys here. But this season, I’m going to make the effort to discover some of these unique, admirable additions for gifts to my loved ones. Instead of making your gift guides based on what we normally would, lets try to purchase from our favorite small shops. My favorite small businesses definitely include
Salon 52,
La Tua Bella beauty bar (which you can read about in my previous postings),
Maizies Tea Room,
Cupcake Confessions by Miss V,
and Simply Bee~utiful. 
The Pottery Shack! My friend Marissa’s aunt owns a local pottery shop, we went there and painted our own pottery. It was so much fun, relaxing and I love my tea pot I created myself!
 
I asked some of my readers what their favorite small businesses were and here were some listed:
Gypsy Warrior Boutique, Pink Jewels, PoshBoutique Montville, MSV, Nutz, Joe’s dairy bar, Brassiere 292, Tiramisu restaurant, Steven Amendola, Marlene Weber, Alto music, Tuminaro’s Pharmacy, Rock and Snow, Dedrick’s, Rossi’s deli, Tay, Catbirdnyc.com which features jewelry made by local NYC makers, Beacon bath & bubble featuring all home made bath products from soaps, salts, scrubs, lotions and tons of delicious scents, made with all organic ingredients that are good for your skin, nellys, dana bands, Doughty plumbing & heating, Shadows, Beacon delights for candles, Osmia Organics for natural skincare products, Cocktail perfume, Cesare & Lilly, Babylonian Soap Company, Farmie Market& the list goes ON! 
Not familiar with Osmia Organics? Love her soaps! Watch this video and get familiar!
Here is a head piece I wore today, I bought locally and it was hand made, but forgive me I threw out the tag and CAN NOT remember for anything who made it. :/ But I LOVE it! Perfect for this wintery day!
 
I hope some of you reading this, are willing to support and hop on the small business train for some of your Christmas shopping this year !
 
Now, for those of us who have limited time or limited budgets, can find great items & more affordable, yet comparable substitutions at our local drugs stores. My favorite foundation is Makeup Forever Hd foundation retailed at $42 at Sephora. I am VERY particular and fussy when it comes to foundations. I need something smooth, non clogging, lightweight yet getting great coverage without feeling like your wearing a mask. The ONLY drugstore foundation I found very comparable to makeup forever’s foundation is Maybelline New York Fit Me! Foundation retailing at only $8 !!! I have every shade of this foundation and absolutely love it. 
 
I also love It’s a 10 Miracle conditioner retailing at $16 for 5 oz. At Walmart I grabbed L’Oreal EverCreme intense nourishing conditioner retailing at $6 for 8.5 oz. I LOVE IT! It’s sulfate-free and is filled with natural omegas infusing moisture into the hair. Make sure to always get Sulfate-free shampoo and conditioner. 
 
Rather than spending a fortune in Teavana which I’m 100% guilty of, purchase local tea at Harney & Sons. Based out of Millerton, NY, they also opened up a shop in SoHo, NY you can read all about Harney & Son’s story here: http://www.harney.com/blog/our-tradition-of-tea/
 
My collection of Karuna facial masks. Retails online for $28 a box of 4, BUT found at Marshalls for $12 😉
 
Happy holiday shopping! Time for facial masks and tea time. Here are a few photos that I recently received in my email from jobs the past couple weeks. Enjoy beauties! 
screen shot from music video last week I did makeup, hair  & grooming for
In action shot of the bride’s mother in law last week, taken from Gary of Christine Studios.. one of my favorite wedding photographers!
Beautiful shot from one of my past bride’s Dina… Unsure of the photographers name but as soon as I find out I will credit them! Makeup by me, Hair by Annaliese Tatulli
Love this bride! Gorgeous vintage look. Makeup by me hair by Nicole Naccarato
So much more to come! Xo

Keep Calm & Give Thanks!

Hey beauties! This week has been crazy with Thanksgiving, my 23rd birthday, and tons of work! Thanksgiving is always the time that it really begins to feel like the holidays. I hope everyone had a fabulous Thanksgiving with your loved ones and favorite people. I spent my Thanksgiving (which happened to land on my birthday this year) in Westchester at my family’s house, stuffing my face with fatty foods, opening gifts and appreciating my loved ones. This time of year I tend to reflect on my life and what I’m thankful for. 
  • My family, who love me and support me unconditionally no matter what

  • My amazing friends who I adore dearly

  

  • Andrew, who always seems to guide me in the right path

  

  • My furry friends whom I’ve adopted and love so much and for all the cute things they do, that melts my heart every single day

   

  • The little things in life that make me happy like my daily morning cup of tea

  • Opportunities and experiences that have come my way

  • The support of all my readers & followers that constantly motivate me to work hard and be successful!

 
I am also thankful that I celebrated Thanksgiving not once but twice this year. The day after Thanksgiving I did makeup for an amazing fashion show/benefit, that Rose Kneer put together for Adopt-A-Solider Platoon.
On my way, I couldn’t help but admire the sunset!
For me this event was like celebrating Thanksgiving twice, because it made me realize, and appreciate life and everything in it. The show was hosted by actor and comedian Carlos Gonzalez and co-hosted by Mrs. NJ America 2012, Robin Vitale. Here’s a photo of my Logo on screen of the show…
The show helped raise awareness and funds for deployed soldiers in need. The mission of Adopt A Soldier Platoon is to improve the morale of service men and women, as well as their families. There were amazing performances, and some great designers that blew my mind! Recording Artist Apryl Evans performed and her voice was unbelievable. David J. Bixler who was an injured Colonel during his third tour in Afghanistan, made an amazing speech that was really moving. He shared his reasons for joining the military, and his dedication to fight for the freedoms that have been afforded to him. He described how he felt guilty taking advantage of the freedom we are all given without doing something to earn it. He didn’t complain once, he was very thankful for the Adopt a Solider Platoon contributions. It’s the smallest things that makes the biggest differences, for these soldiers.
I attended this event to do makeup for models, and after David’s speech, I realized I was there for SO MUCH MORE.
  
It made me thankful for everything I have in life, and motivated me to help. During the fashion show part there was a designer that immediately caught my attention. I liked how she came backstage and introduced herself to me, and described to me what looks she wanted me to create on her models. Her designs were lovely. The makeup she chose was bold. Bold blue eyeliner. But… I couldn’t help but notice her age. She appeared to be very young, and made it almost unbelievable that she was the designer! Well, my assumptions were right. Her name? Jazmin Brown. Her age? 14 YEARS OLD! Such great talent at such a young age! Check out this commercial her work is featured in! 
 
  
Alexandria Gilleo: Your such an inspiration, I can’t believe how young you are! What age did you start designing?
Jazmin Brown: Thank you. I started designing about two years ago, at the age of 12. I started off modeling first, then became a designer. I was also on the Tyra Banks show when I was 11 years old. 
 
AG: Ah, something we have in common. I was also once a guest host on the Tyra Banks show ! What is your biggest accomplishment?
JB: My biggest accomplishment was definitely getting booked with Kraft foods!
 
AG: What was it like filming and being chosen for the Honey Grahams commercial?
JB: Amazing! I was sent to San Francisco to film the commercial. My designs were featured in NJ Fashion week. It was a great experience. 
 
AG: What projects do you have in the works, and where do you see yourself in 5 years?
JB: Right now I’m working on my pieces going into boutiques. That’s what I’m working out now. In the future I see myself having my own boutique. I make all the kids pieces myself. For adult wear, I’m still learning. Right now I have someone sit along with me. 
 
Other designers included Dana Bands, Nikkay Fashions, HR Fashion, E & J Bridal Boutique, Stache Haus, Jerzy bling, and a few more. I was truly honored to work this event! This week, I also was booked to do makeup for a music video. Fun! Love these types of jobs. Incredible singer, Michelle Sangalli called me to come on set of her video and do makeup and hair. I got to work with director Edwin Escobar, for the second time. His work is great and I love working with him. He means business! I also got to meet Christopher Lykins, the male actor in the video. He is a model and upcoming actor. Look out for him in tv series Revolution, and movie Safe Haven. Here’s a photo of some of the crew.
 
I am so thankful for my career. I truly love meeting so many different people, and working with young talent CONSTANTLY!
Again, I hope you readers all had a great Thanksgiving. Christmas is next! Christmas is no doubt the most exciting time of the year! I adore everything about this season, except the cold weather 😉 I decorated the whole house, and very excited that I put up my PINK Christmas tree in my closet room. Along with Victoria Secret gifts under the tree (Yes, I’m stocking up on those secret reward cards!) Here’s some photos of my week and Christmas decor! Enjoy!
Celebrating my 23rd Birthday!
  
Christmas Decor! A stocking for Andrew, LaLaa, Buddah, Sonny, Banks, Tom & myself 😉
  
Thanks again for reading! Next post will be on Wednesday ! Xo!

Wings Castle

Once upon a time, I was browsing through the internet (what else is new) looking for new places to explore in Millbrook, NY. I found a location that immediately caught my attention, “Wings Castle.” The photos looked like my dream home that was built to life (considering that I am a princess in my own head )!  As I was looking at all the photos, I had a flash back to this actual castle. I’ve BEEN here before! The photo I found of the moat at Wings Castle brought me back, I remember going to watch a Shakespeare play with a friend here when I was younger. I believe her dad assisted with lighting but I may be wrong. Being a makeup artist that works with tons of designers & photographers, I thought this location would be  a golden opportunity to have a shoot. The next day, I was working at the salon when I overheard my boss’s cousin talking to her about her job giving tours at a castle. No way?! Please tell me you are discussing Wings Castle. Yep! She was. I told her to text me the dates she would be working that week. That Sunday, she told me to come on by so me, my boyfriend, his sister and nephew went to take the tour.

This unique “tourist attraction” is not just a castle for Shakespeare plays but the RESIDENCE of the owners and builders Peter & Toni Ann Wing. Peter Wing built ( & is still building) this castle aka his home. Genius. Every nook and cranny of this place had a unique touch of art, down to the tiniest detail. Peter Wing hand placed every stone on the property. The entire castle is made from recycled material. Peter fashioned this incredible medieval castle from modern junk, rubble and garbage that most people would throw out. As you walk up to the castle, no doubt that you will start to believe that you have been transported back in time into a fairy tale in your most unimaginable dreams. After our tour, I asked to meet Mrs. Wing so I could discuss with her my idea of a photo shoot at the castle. She was lovely, showing us more of her home which isn’t open to the public on the tours. To my surprise she said yes for the photo shoot, but instead of any form of payment she asked if I could do her a favor, and “house sit” the castle the following Friday day & night because she & Mr. Wing had an engagement to attend. I know your probably thinking uhh this sounds like a beginning of a scary film, but OBVIOUSLY I was going to take this opportunity… as long as my boyfriend could come as well to protect me incase the scary knight in shining armor in the hallway decided to come alive. 🙂

   

Back to my dream home! Before Mr. & Mrs. Wing left, Mrs. Wing left me directions with how to welcome guests. They were waiting on guests to arrive to the towers. I didn’t mention previously that this place is also a bed & breakfast. You can stay over night in either “The tower room” or “The dungeon”. Both rooms are so legit! I will definitely make a point to stay here next autumn, when the leaves are changing colors. My boyfriend said he would prefer to stay in the Dungeon Room. It’s very cozy with a double bed. There’s a tiny fridge & coffee maker.. I should add that in this room there is no television or phone (not sure how I feel about that) but it definitely adds character to ” a castle “. After they left, we IMMEDIATELY started our exploration! First off, I want to begin to say HOW INCREDIBLE the view is! Truly breathtaking. You can see about 45 miles out east & west from the highest point of the property. You can see Mt. Beacon which I have hiked numerous times &  also see the Catskill mountains. We explored all around outside, there was tons of art. It amazes me how this man masterfully created this “home” with a unique blend of past with present! There is tons of sculpture, stained glass placed into the stone walls, outdoor staircases that are tiny and winding, towers overlooking the castle, moat and view, passage ways through it all. Literally something out of a fairy tale. We wandered all over outside, taking photos and admiring everything. Andrew thought it would be funny to hide and jump out and scare me at certain points… Not funny! We ran back inside to change into our bathing suits and go swimming in the moat. Water was cold but refreshing. I’m usually not much of a swimmer but I was like a little fish in water. There was even a huge frog in the pool, usually I’d scream and get out  but again, it just added character to the moat. I was convinced the frog was my prince charming waiting to be kissed. Hah just kidding. There’s a part of the pool .. ehem .. I mean the moat, that goes under the house, like a tiny tunnel which was also neat to swim in. I wish we took more photos swimming but I didn’t want to risk getting my phone wet.

   

    

  

Going back inside, the kitchen is filled with old antiques including their pet parrot, Trudy. I say old antique because Trudy is now 100 years old. Trudy wasn’t too friendly , she was barking at my boyfriend. LOL ! The living room is American Pickers DREAM! So many carvings, collections, art, history, there is not an empty spot from the floor to the ceiling.  You could tour this house over and over and still discover something new to admire. There is a stone walkway inside leading to the bathroom which is beautiful! The sink is actually an old bird bath refurbished into a sink. There is beautiful stained glass, a spiral stone staircase, and the bathtub is a huge copper round tub, the water comes out of the mouth of a figure sculpted on the wall. It’s gorgeous arched brickwork is simple amazing.. I still can’t get over how they built such a magical place with their very own hands..

Then the guests arrived. Please don’t be serial killers! LOL The guests were young, very nice, decked out in Burberry outfits. We gave them a quick run around of the castle and lead them to their rooms. We asked them what the occasion was & they were attendees of one of the Johnson & Johnson daughter’s wedding the following day at a local farm. You fancy huh! After exploring & observing the castle it was time to relax. Andrew relaxed watching television on the couch which was a piece brought over from London, as I meditated on the stone wall outside which overlooked the incredible view of mountains, watching the sun set. I don’t know if I’ve ever felt so relaxed or content than I did in that moment. Everything was so peaceful, the nice breeze as the sun went down, the birds chasing each other chirping, the sound of crickets and frogs, a cute cat lounging around… It was perfect.

The whole place is a creative wonder. Now, when I castle sat it was back in the summer, but TODAY was the photoshoot. It was absolutely incredible !! I obviously did all the makeup for the shoot, and my good friend Alyse Camara did all the hair. The shoot was for a calendar that is inspired by the movie Sucker Punch. I haven’t actually seen the movie myself, but I’ll probably rent it tonight because I’m curious.

I worked with a fabulous photographer GianCarlo Fernandez, and an amazing group of girls who I instantly clicked with. As soon as they entered to get hair & makeup I could feel their positive energy. They were so fun, nice, upbeat and pretty. The whole day was filled with laughs and joking. I know I’m not a model (I’m not a size 000 and 6 feet tall) but I filled in as one of the Sucker Punch girls. Each Sucker Punch character has their own different style and attitude. The photos looked awesome, I can’t wait to see all the finished work. For now I’ll post the photos I took on my iPhone.

    

Rocket was played by Dana. Dana had such great energy. I’m pretty sure she was laughing the whole time since she walked thru the door. She works on the set of NBC’s show Smash with Katharine McPhee.

   

Sweet Pea was played by Anna. She should be a victoria secret model. lol She’s a polish model/actress that grew up in Germany and is still new to NYC. She’s already worked with actors including Alec Baldwin and Tina Fey.

  

Johanny played Amber. Johanny, also a beauty, was so incredibly sweet! She is also an actress/model in NYC area. You can check her out at http://johannymota.com

  

Kristen played Baby doll. I’ve been friends with Kristen & her sisters for over a year now. The whole family is talented. Kristen is living in Manhattan writing films. Her films were featured in festivals in LA.

  

Dr. Vera Gorski was played by my close friend Chelsea Harris, owner of Salon 52 in Poughkeepsie

  

& I played Blondie!

  

Looking at all the photos, you’d think we looked warm but it was 27 degrees outside. We were frozen and I still don’t think I can feel my toes. Regardless of the weather I had so much fun doing makeup and participating in this shoot. I met a group of awesome people and look forward to working with them again! I will post the professional photos as soon as I get them. The makeup was fun! I’ll also have to do another post on all the products I used to create all our characters.

Wings castle is truly a work of art and so magical. I would love to attend another play here. We really fell in love with the castle & even though we did the Wings a favor, I felt honored to have them let us stay at their home, free to wander and explore. Peter Wing is creative, fascinating man. I 100% recommend this tour during the warmer months. I believe it’s a small fee of $12 for adults and $8 for children. You won’t regret it! Tell them Alex sent you, maybe they’ll show you more thats not part of the tour!

xo

Hylunia

Hi beauties! 2 years ago I was introduced to an amazing, natural, organic skin care line called Hylunia. If you know me personally, then you definitely have heard me RAVE about this line or have seen my posts about Hylunia on my facebook page. When I was introduced to Hylunia, I was working at a salon nearby and they had just hired a esthetician named Lillian. Lillian & myself bonded quickly. She reminds me of my grandmothers, very loving, welcoming and sweet. She’s been in the industry for years and had used Hylunia for over a decade. I was always skeptical of facials and messing with my skin because my skin tends to be sensitive & I can break out easily. After researching and looking over reviews on this product line I was finally convinced I needed a facial from her & it probably was the best decision I’ve made for my skin. The products are so light weight and smooth. My skin feels so fresh and radiant after using Hylunia. My facials from Lillian went from non existent to getting a facial once every two weeks. OFFICIALLY ADDICTED! Unfortunately as time went on, Lillian moved and I started working at a different salon. I miss her amazing facials but will be forever hooked on Hylunia thanks to her!

I use Beyond Complex C on my face every morning & night after cleansing. After 2 weeks using this product, I can tell you that you WILL notice a difference in your skin. This light-weight orange lotion packed with Vitamin C is a rejuvenating bio-active serum that evens out your skin tone and minimizes fine lines & wrinkles. The texture of your skin WILL improve! You only need a tiny amount. A little bit of this product goes a long way. Beyond Complex C is organic, vegan and cruelty-free. No matter what skin care line I’m using I mix the Beyond C in it as well. I’m truly addicted.

Hylunia’s anti-oxidant vitamin mask is also one of my favorites. Sometimes I wear it to bed and wake up with such soft, smooth skin. I use the The Colloidal Silver spray containing Lavendar Floral Water every day after exercising, yoga, if I’m hot, during work, after work, (lol) also addicted.. It eats away bacteria and is so refreshing and cooling! The Colloidal Silver has healing properties and is PERFECT for all skin types (yes, even sensitive!) It helps keep skin soft, clean and refreshed. I love the day lotion, keep your face feeling very moisturized and contains SPF which is a must! The Night Serum is the best night treatment I’ve ever tried on my skin.

   

I’m proud to say I got most of my friends equally addicted to Hylunia!  & hopefully after reading this post some of you will try it out ! It can be pricey for the whole line but I promise it’s worth it.. And remember a little bit of product can go a long way. After reaching out, Hylunia was even kind enough to donate samples to me for my blog launch party! Thank you Hylunia for being the BEST!!!

  Here’s a photo after I had a hylunia facial, no redness or irritation !

Do you plan on trying hylunia products? Have you ever tried it? What are your opinions & thoughts? So many exciting things in the works, my next post will be on Sunday ! Xo

Product review

This past weekend consisted of my usual routine; Makeup clients, shopping, at home facials, more makeup, dinner dates with friends followed by a trip to NYC. As I strolled around this week, I can’t help but notice that everything is Christmas! I thought Santa visits the mall AFTER Thanksgiving? Guess not this year.. Oh, well I’m not complaining. After all, it’s the most wonderful time of the year 🙂 While shopping, I found myself in Victoria Secret per usual. As much as I’m in there shopping, I seem to forget they have a makeup line. I figured I’d purchase some products and test them out to see how I like them. I purchased the VS tinted moisturizer with spf 15, VS pro radiant FX face illuminator, and VS face powder Next to Nude.   

 

Lets start with the VS tinted moisturizer. I adore the packaging. It’s in a small squeeze tube, preventing it from squeezing too much product out. Putting it on my face this morning, it felt very lightweight. I applied it with my fingertips and lightly blended with a MAC brush. I love that is contains SPF 15 ! If your skin needs some coverage, then this product probably isn’t the best product to go with, only because it is so light weight and has only minimal coverage. It does however give your skin the overall appearance of a more even skin tone. I felt that my skin was smooth all day. This was only $15 ! Officially a fan 🙂

The Victoria’s Secret Pro Radiant Fix Face Illuminator reminded me a lot of NARS Orgasm Illuminator, which is great considering I bought the VS product for less than half the price of what I pay for Nars. It was a great highlighter that I patted on to the bridge of my nose, under my browbone and along my cheekbones. It gave me a nice glow and stayed set all day. To give your face a dewy angelic finish try mixing your liquid illuminator with your regular foundation and apply.

The VS illuminating face powder I also loved. I used it for an eyeshadow and with a small brush used it to go over my already highlighted areas on my face. I really am obsessed with highlighting the face. I want to do it to every client. Looks so good, and natural!!

 500 point perk at Sephora! Nars !

I really enjoyed this new makeup, mainly because it was LIGHT! You have to really be careful and choose carefully which makeup is good for your skin. The wrong makeup can make your skin or acne worse. Being a makeup artist I tell ALL of my clients this! People with less than perfect skin (including myself!) Can NOT use heavy foundation and oily concealers! Your skin will never clear up if your not using the right products for your face. The only time I’ve used heavy foundation and powders was for commercials or films I was working on. Every major makeup company now makes oil-free foundations! My favorite foundation to use on myself and for all my brides is Makeup Forever foundation. The MF HD Foundation is housed in a typical plastic bottle which comes with a pump that dispenses just the right amount of product. I find this foundation makes the skin soft  with a dewy finish. The coverage is pretty good for a liquid foundation – it covers  most imperfections such as fainted acne marks, freckles etc. It lasts about 5-6 hours on me looking fresh. Best of all it photographs very well. I will absolutely wear this is I’m going out, but on an every day basis I always use tinted moisturizer. My favorite concealer is Erase Paste by benefit. The tub of product is incredibly tiny for $26 (just .15 oz), but thankfully you only need a VERY tiny bit to get the job done, so this product lasts me a very long time! This concealer comes in three different shades: Fair, Medium and Dark  .. I use No. 2 Medium shade. It’s great for color correcting if you have dark under eye circles or a red pimple! It’s also a dream to blend. You can find both of these products at Sephora. For people with oily skin, use mineral foundations, it helps your skin become matte for longer.

Me & friends at brunch earlier , with some Knicks players in NYC. Here’s a photo of us and Ray Felton …

      I also want to share quick, that I purchased more Karuna masks. I’m really LOVING these!!! I highly recommend them, for an affordable, great at home mask. Hope everyone had a fabulous weekend ! Xo

   

Intraceuticals Oxygen Infused Facial

Hi dolls! What an exciting week! Bridal trials, special fx makeup, and spa treatments! My friend Jason from this past season of Face Off called me over to watch him create a new fx character. I’ve been meaning to go to his workshop and learn for a while now, but with both our busy schedules, it seemed impossible. It was so fun! He’s so talented. 
  
 
Ok ladies…Lets talk beauty! Spa treatments, for most of us, are something of a treat. Anniversaries, Christmas presents, birthday surprises…. —a girls favorite gift. I take my spa days seriously, since most treatments are pricey, I need good technicians that are educated and can perform amazing services. Which is why, my beauties, I can’t wait to tell you about my Oxygen Infused facial at La Tua Bella Beauty bar in Rhinebeck, NY.
Luckily for me, I was invited for a complementary 2 hour infusion service. *Perks of a beauty blogger. I feel like this is exactly what I needed. I am a work-a-holic! Even when I’m not working at the salon or beautifying my clients, I’m still working, whether it’s networking, advertising, prepping for a shoot, cleaning my brushes, emailing back and forth with clients… It never stops. With all that work, comes stress, and with stress comes congested skin crying out for help (no matter how much time I spend at home giving myself homemade facials),  an Oxygen Facial was exactly what I needed. Who doesn’t love a bit of pampering? A little pampering goes a long way. Indulging in any beauty treatment, at home or at the spa can give you a feeling of instant glam and a pick me up confidence booster for sure!
 

La Tua Bella is not your local makeup store, or your idea of a regular spa/salon. This “beauty bar” is a unique blend of affordable services that combine professional salon/style pampering with such a wide range of services and products. I arrived early, sporting my cotton leggings and an off the shoulder, comfy sweater from h&m. I love everything about Rhinebeck, & in my opinion the location of this spa is perfect. In the middle of a cute town I adore. So walking up to La Tua Bella, I’m already in my glory, sipping on hot green tea, wearing my fingerless gloves made by UGGs. Open the door and you are in princess glamy land that is suitable for ANY age. I was welcomed by Megan, the owner, who made me feel right at home. Soft music played as she offered me a beverage and a mini cupcake (which I indulged in after my services). The set up is perfect. A new sink & chair under a canopy, to give you enough privacy for your relaxing blow out. It features a beauty bar (literally) filled with products to test. Megan carries so many of my favorite products including Model In a Bottle setting spray, Benefit makeup products, Hylunia skin care, Somme Institute just to name a few, which are displayed on wooden shelves, and very neatly arranged. There are stylish, yet comfortable chairs, perfectly bright lighting in the main room, followed by low lighting in the spa room, which immediately relaxed me. Everything about this place is pleasing to the eye, and VERY CLEAN! 

      

As I got ready for my Intraceuticals Oxygen Infused facial, I noticed all things were in place. A warm candle-lit room, with a familiar scent that greeted me.. “Chill Pill” one of my favorite lavender essential oils that I actually had with me in my purse. The bed was heated, which was a nice touch. I then embarked upon nearly 2 hours of sheer BLISS. An oasis of calm, came over me and all the stresses of modern life left me. Intracueticals Oxygen Infusion treatment involves a machine that infuses atomized moisturizers and high powered serums onto your skin by using a stream of pressurized oxygen. It hydrates the skin immediately, temporarily diminishes all fine lines and tiny imperfections, while plumping and smoothing the skin’s surface. It’s recommended to receive 6 treatments for optimum results. There are 2 different types to choose from. 

    

Rejuvenate ~ Achieves a youthful glow and visible reduction of fine lines and wrinkles through deep hydration, promotes natural collagen and elastin production for improved skin texture 

Opulence ~ Super concentrated vitamin C and natural plant extracts safely and naturally treat hyper-pigmentation with deep hydration. It’s a botanical brightener to reduce hyper pigmentation and lighten dark spots, scars and other imperfections. 

 

The Intraceuticals Infusion Oxygen Facial boasts a long line of celebrity fans including Madonna, Naomi Campbell, Eva Longoria and even Justin Timberlake. It uses hyperbaric oxygen (which is basically pressurized oxygen) along with Hyaluronic Acid to deliver specially formulated serums deep into the skin’s structural layers so skin becomes instantly brighter, firmer and younger. Hmm… An oxygen system that claims to deliver this “miracle treatment” …without needles? Sounds not only weird but also bogus… right? This experience, truly vanished my doubts. This treatment was completely painless, as a matter of fact the cool, tingly, sensation almost tickled. No discomfort, redness or irritation. Megan was even nice enough to even offer me a lip infusion. 

 

When I saw the results, my jaw literally dropped! My face looked visibly and instantly plumper and any tightness that I had on my forehead, cheeks and chin was completely gone. My skin immediately had a gorgeous glow. I didn’t notice much of a difference with my lips, but Megan said if I follow up with 2 to 3 more treatments, I will. Afterwards, my skin was incredibly soft, and still is. I got so many complements on my skin yesterday and today! It was such a lovely experience and something I could get used to every month. Actually, scratch that… EVERY WEEK! I think this would be a nice treat for a best friend, or if your a guy looking to get your girlfriend a gift… this is definitely it! This perk me up treatment was a revelation! I can see why Madonna is so in love with this! She even bought the machine so she can do the treatments at home. Katy Perry gets this treatment before every performance. Eva Longoria even says this is a “necessity before every major event.” Here is a clip from celebrity makeup artist Gina Brooke demonstrating the exact facial treatment I got done. Check it out! 


 I want to thank Megan at La Tua Bella Beauty bar for making my first oxygen facial such an amazing, pleasant and memorable experience. I am officially loving this product line, and a fan which means I’ll definitely be going back for more. Remember, you can go to any spa for a facial, but not many have Intraceuticals Oxygen Infusion treatments. I recommend this La Tua Bella Beauty Bar 100%. It’s so unique, and perfect for any spa day, ladies night out, or even a young girls birthday party. Actually, a group of young girls were walking in as I was leaving to have a birthday party there! Every now and then everyone deserves a relaxing, pampering day. (even guys)

 

$165 initial treatment

Series of 6: $800 ($190 savings).

 

Please check out La Tua Bellas website at http://www.latuabella.com

If you decide to book a service after reading this, please let them know you read this article. 

 

Have you ever tried an Intraceuticals treatment? Want to try it after reading this post? Was my review useful? Please beauties… Do tell! 

 

Xo

 

Disclosure: A treatment was provided for review. 

Go for the glow!

Ah November, you are here and creeped up on me way too quickly. I can’t believe I find myself holiday shopping already! I started buying gifts and goodies for my girls. Oh, how I will miss summer dearly but can’t say the beginning of these crisp days and nights excite me. Every year when the weather turns cold, I find myself craving hot baths, hot showers, and of course hot tea. Sure it all sounds fabulous and feels nice, but I’m trying to refrain myself from doing so (besides the tea part!).  Let me tell you why. The hot water may feel amazing when it’s cold outside, and a great way for warming you up from this chilly weather, but it is an absolute NIGHTMARE for drying out your body and scalp. I’ve mentioned before in one of my previous posts that I used to suffer from psoriasis. I have to work extra hard to keep myself hydrated to avoid any dryness that can trigger dry skin and psoriasis. Hot water can suck the hydration right out of our bodies, leaving us with dry skin and dandruff. If you absolutely love taking hot showers like me, then here is a few pointers to keep yourself hydrated this winter!

Exfoliate! Exfoliating helps the skin absorb products better, giving you a smoother appearance. The three most important things  you can do for your skin are clean it, moisturize it, and protect it from the sun. Exfoliation helps to deep cleanse your skin, which will help it retain more moisture and look fresher, younger and healthier. If exfoliating at home is just not enough then I definitely recommend having your skin polished at the spa! One of my favorite services to receive would definitely be microdermabrasion. I feel that it really improves skin texture and eliminates discoloration making your skin very even toned. Microdermabrasion also erases fine lines ! You want to make sure you go to a very reputable establishment before receiving this service. Your task should be performed by a licensed esthetician  or even a dermatologist. If you suffer from rosacea, I wouldn’t recommend getting Micro because it can leave your skin aggravated and cause redness. The micro process removes the very top layer of your skin, so some people’s skin will turn pink after for a short period of time. ( This doesn’t happen to me ) I like to get this done a couple days before a big event, leaving my skin polished and glowing. DO NOT go into the sun after getting Micro! Your skin will become easily irritated and more susceptible to sunburn. Regular removal of dead skin cells and surface impurities or exfoliation helps prevent excessive thickening of your skin which makes it look pasty and not fresh. EW! For my at home exfoliations I use Ole Hendricksen’s Walnut Complexion Scrub found at Sephora. I also LOVE Karuna’s exfoliating mask, which I use once a week. Use gentle circular strokes when exfoliating and don’t SCRUB or work on any area for too long because it will cause irritation. I exfoliate at home once a week. For your body you can use stronger scrubs and brushes. I use a loofah. I also love sugar scrubs. I exfoliate my body every time I shower and moisturize as soon as I get out so my whole body feels ultra soft. 

 Getting micro in this photo! I look like a mummy lol

Moisturize within minutes of stepping out of the shower. People think the best time to hydrate is after your skin is dried off….wrong. The best time to lather on facial moisturizers and body lotions is when your skin is still slightly damp. Your body absorbs the product better and in turn you end up using less product then you normally would!

 Simply Bee-utiful Lavender Honey lotion.. All natural.. feels so good !

-For shampoos stick to brands without sulfates. Sulfate is not good for your scalp and very drying. A LOT of shampoos have sulfate. I use Onesta shampoo & Nature’s Gate shampoo which are both natural and sulfate free. 

Argan Oil, grapeseed oil, avocado oil and sesame oil is my best kept secrets to smooth, soft skin…especially in the winter months. I mix a few drops into my body lotion, rub into my cuticles and layer on top of my moisturizer for added hydration.

    This oil is what I use to shave my legs 🙂 

There are many things to love about this time of year.. My birthday 😉 Thanksgiving, Christmas, crisp snowy mornings, holiday parties, festive lights, hot tea and cocoa, ice skating, jingle Ball, fireplaces with a room filled with lit candles, so much.  

 Jingle Ball’s After party last year with Redfoo

 My birthday last year.. dressed as batman lmao

 Ghetto fire place … haha we ran out of real fire wood

But unfortunately with these cold months ahead also brings on puffy eyes, headaches, runny noses, etc. So irritating to deal with, and takes a toll on your beauty routine as well. Make sure to take your vitamins, especially Vitamin C during these months, drink herbal teas, and keep warm. But here are some easy tips to help these beauty issues for the winter. 

 New tea cup 🙂

Puffy eyes? You need a soothing product to give them a quick boost. Bliss has some great eye treatments to help energize for an instant eye lift! Try fresh sliced cucumbers and frozen green tea bags for an at home remedy.  

Headache? Try an essential oil to dab on your temples, back of neck and under nose to inhale. I learned this at the spa. They usually do this before a massage. Also, eye pillows help! For an at home remedy drink apple cider vinegar mixed with a glass of water 😉
 
Dry, Raw nose?  Drink water! Also, Saline water is best natural remedy for dry nose. Saline nasal drops are available in pharmacy stores. Inhale steam, all you have to do is boil water in a bowl, once it has started to boil remove the vessel from the stove. Inhale the steam. The moisturizing effect of steam will help to relieve pain and dryness in the nose. It will also open the pores. 
 
Colds and sore throats? Sip on a cocktail of an immune-boosting squeezed lemon juice with warm water, ginger and raw honey (must be raw as this preserves healthful enzymes). Mix together one small tablespoon of raw honey with ¼ teaspoon of cinnamon. 
 
Increase your intake of healthy fats and oils this winter: avocado, coconut oil, olive oil, flaxseeds and oil, chia seeds, nuts, oily fish and fish oil!  Ok time to get ready for bed and catch up on my shows. Sorry for posting so late tonight, I had a surprise birthday dinner to attend for my favorite lady, Monica! Here are some photos below… Enjoy 🙂 
      
Another thank you card from one of my gorgeous brides 🙂
Hope everyone had a fabulous weekend! Xo

Halloween: Avoiding a scary day after

 Hello beauties ! I want to first start off saying the thing I enjoy most about blogging with you is the feedback I’ve received and the support I am getting with over 4,000 hits in such a short period of time, I couldn’t be more motivated. It’s hard limiting myself just to 2-3 posts a week! I welcome any questions that might inspire additional future posts. I really couldn’t be happier how amazing this is all going. I do want to take a moment to talk about Hurricane Sandy that recently hit the East Coast. I’m so devastated with all that’s occurred the last several days in NJ, CT and NY resulting from this storm. I just wanted to provide everyone with a really easy way to give back, I know myself I was luckily enough to have very minimal effect and I’m sure some of you have been just as lucky so please just click the link below and give whatever you can.


I know this all seems “a bit commercial” but this is really important. Maybe the most important its ever been for some of us, because its actually in our back yard.. I’m sure you’ve seen some of these photos, but if you haven’t please take a look & help donate ! 
 
     
Aerial view of devastation along the barrier islands of Ocean County after Hurricane Sandy wreaked havoc on the Jersey Shore. Lots of fun memories at this place.
108-year-old subway system, which experienced substantial, unprecedented flooding, also all bus services, bridges and tunnels, as well as all Long Island Railroad, and Metro North lines. As of yesterday night seven subway tunnels under the East River have flooded, in addition to commuter tunnels, subway stations, rail yards and bus stations. So weird, we were just in these exact subways and was riding on the long island railroad saturday and sunday! 

    

 

So please, ladies & gents.. help donate and help our neighbors in need!  It’s devastating watching the footage of the city and other parts of the East Coast that was affected by Sandy. On a lighter note, how was everyone’s Halloween?! I was pleasantly surprised to see how many kids tricked or treated through the puddles in my neighborhood. I’m glad to see all the little monsters safe and parents squeezing some Halloween fun into these dark days. I had so many trick or treaters this year that I actually ran out of candy, so I had to dump my box of low calorie fruit snacks & granola bars into my halloween bowl… better than pennies the old folks used to hand out, right?! I know Halloween night also means tons of makeup. Chances are you probably had a full face of serious makeup/hair junk/costumery. Hopefully you all washed your faces very well last night, otherwise you probably woke up today with a hot, hot mess of the aftermath. No one needs to see tangled, gross hair… Walk of shame-equue makeup remnants and false eyelash strips hanging off your eyeballs. Whether you were a vampire, zombie, cat or lady gaga you probably used a lot of makeup to achieve the right affect. How is all this makeup going to affect your skin, you may ask? Haha, lets just say that you want to look scary on Halloween… not the day after.. So! Scary time is over, time to erase the evidence and restore your skin. 

     

First, you want to make sure that your cleanser is a product suitable for your skin type. The right cleanser is KEY! & Remember you don’t have to waste money on expensive cleansers- I personally splurge more on moisturizers containing sunscreen & antiaging Products.  

 

In the morning, you want to cleanse your face before you put on toner. You then want to apply moisturizer or sunscreen. I buy moisturizers that contain sunscreen in them. My two favorite products being Hylunia Day Moisturizer & Somme Institute’s Double Defense cream. Even if you cleansed and removed all makeup last night, a splash of water in the morning or standing under the shower simply is not enough. 

       

 

As you sleep, bacteria builds up on your skin along with oil. After you cleanse your skin in the morning you want to PAT your face dry (not wipe) & let me emphasize that the towel should be clean & changed daily. At night,  your going to want to repeat this process but apply a serum & anti-aging cream afterwards. I cannot emphasize this enough: NEVER GO TO BED WITHOUT CLEANSING YOUR FACE & REMOVING MAKEUP!  Unless you want the result of breakouts and clogged pores. Once in a while if I’m too lazy and exhausted to go through the process of cleansing my face after a night out of dancing, I keep cleansing cloths near my bed. Olay and Biore all make good cleaning pads. Apply a good night cream to ensure that the morning after Halloween, your skin has no resemblance to the Crypt Keeper 😉

 

I do recommend using Boscia’s Luminizing Black Mask. If you don’t want to splurge on this, go into Sephora and ask for a sample. They will make you up a free mini sample that is good for one use. If you don’t want to use Boscia then select a hydrating mask if your skin is on the drier side, and a clarifying mask if your skin tends to be more oily. It will definitely help restore your skin from all that Halloween makeup from yesterday. After the removal of the mask, moisturize, moisturize, moisturize. 

 

& Remember to drink a lot of water to flush out all that candy you munched on… I’m guilty too. Wompppp. 

 

Now, Thanksgiving may be a month away (which happens to land on my birthday this year), but it’s never too early to start prepping and stocking up on must-haves. Now that Halloween is over, Thanksgiving WILL be here quicker than you know, and winter will slowly creep itself in full bloom. In terms of beauty, here is what’s “in” for fall/winter (sourced by NY Fashion Week)….

-Red is timeless. Bold, red colors, red lips, red tinted blush, red nails… Red is just sexy!

Here’s a few photos at the Red party for Mandy Esposito’s Fashion Show during Fashion week , along with a bride with red lips, and a photo shoot for Kris Hester.

              

-Big, dramatic lashes with natural, soft makeup look. Clear, natural, toned skin is always in. Minimalist makeup, with a hint of blush enhancing those gorgeous cheekbones of yours, with Lush Lashes… Boom! Here’s some makeup applications I’ve recently done, that incorporated big lashes with natural, soft face makeup..

            

-Keep your eyes out for headbands! Headbands and head pieces are making a comeback. Look out for jewels, crystals and other embellishments featured on these big headbands, perfect for this fall/winter. 

  

-Keep it simple, clean, fresh with that little ounce of pop. 

 

Thanks for reading 🙂 xoxo