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Happy holidays! Inspirational & Motivating

Hello Beauties!! Nothing better than waking up to a snow day, for me at least. Snow in the Hudson Valley is so very magical. The views here are breathtaking. National Geographic Traveler magazine named the Hudson Valley one of the best places to visit in 2013. That’s right, of the 20 places around the world the National Geographic deems most worth visiting, the Hudson Valley made the grade. We’re right up there with Kyoto, Japan, Thessaloniki, Greece, Uganda, Cape Breton Island and 15 other exotic international locales. Crazy right? I love it here. I’m writing this as I’m snuggled with with my kitten, sipping on hot tea facing the window, enjoying this view out back (with a karuna exfoliating mask on of course).

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On another note, I hope you all had a Merry Christmas, Happy Chanukah, & have a Happy New Year–Happy Holidays to you and your families! I spent some of my week in NYC. There really isn’t anything quiet like Christmas in New York City. The tree, the lights, the shopping, the store front windows decorated perfectly, & the energy..

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We even stopped to say hello to Kelly & Regis… at the Wax museum 😉

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Here’s some more photos from holiday parties/get togethers with friends:

Me, Ashley, Marissa & Jessica’s annual Christmas fiesta!

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Can’t forget Samantha’s house we had our cookie decorating contest!

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And the salon dinner party!

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Me & Chelsea got each other for our “Secret Ornament” which wasn’t so secret… can you guess who got who which ornament? LOL !

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I bought my grandma this adorable book. It asks her tons of questions then she fills it out, every thing about her favorite memories, and childhood favorites. Once she fills it out she’ll give it back to me to treasure forever and pass down! How freaking cute?!

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& just some other photos:

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Remember this season, it isn’t about the gifts, decor, or even food (haha JK) but being around the people you love! Good people. Friends and family! Then comes all the food and cookies– Yikes..Friends, let me confess: I’m not the best when it comes to eating clean during Nov & Dec! Somewhere between all of the holiday parties, running around like a crazy makeup artist, and shopping marathons, I have completely lost my discipline. Haha, lets just say I could go toe-to-toe with Santa in a cookie eating contest. Not cute!

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Instead of waiting until New Years to make my “healthy” resolutions, why not start early? I’m hoping to find that miraculous cleanse that will take that extra inch around my waist away to get me back in shape to look hot for NYE. But for now, here’s what’s on my grocery list,

-lemons

-green tea

-detox tea

-almond milk

-spinach (a lot!)

-plain nonfat greek yogurt

-low fat goat cheese (for my spinach salad)

-ground turkey or boneless/skinless chicken

-hummus

-honey

-eggs

-asaragus

-yams

-low-carb/low sugar cereal (gluten free options available)

-natural almond butter

-walnuts

-coconut oil

-balsamic vinegar

-salsa

-multi vitamins

-& remember A LOT of water !

After an absolutely amazing 2012, it’s time to celebrate this past historic year! Whether it’s low key or a night out, it’s still a celebration. As I always say, indulge in pampering yourself before the new year! Or start it off by booking a massage or facial! I plan on booking a trip to Cali asap to start my new year off !I also plan on hosting another charity event in 2013. I’m not sure if you know, but I used to host my own charity events. Way back when, I designed clothes. When I was 16 years old I started destroying jeans for fun. Back then, it was fun to spend my time crafting up my jeans. Girls in school started offering me money to customize their jeans and “wrecking” them. I would bleach, rip, cut, sew, spray paint all over them.

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Naturally, people started calling me “Fashion Wreck” so hmmm.. perfect name for my “label” ..no? Before I knew it I had parents from all over the area calling me offering me money to “wreck” their daughters (and son’s) jeans. With that said my Fash!onWreck brand grew without me even realizing what I was doing. I had my first charity fashion show when I was 17 years old with my friend Amanda. What better way to raise money for good cause. I had professional hair stylists and makeup artists come to beautify my models. We raised money for a fellow student of ours Steven, who had passed away terrible brain tumor. We wanted his name to be remembered and live on in a positive way so we had hundreds of people donating and attending our fashion show with a lot of help from Steve’s friends and family. We raised 8 thousand dollars and it was put into an Art Scholarship in his memory. I still keep in touch with his mother, who is very dear to me. I love her.

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Second Charity fashion show I did with 2 other of my girl friends was for St. Jude Children’s hospital, again raising 8 thousand dollars at the age of 18. 

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My last show I did last year with sponsorship from Capri Cosmetology, I raised more than my goal of 8 thousand and reached 11 thousand dollars for St. Jude. 

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My brand had grew, at that point I was designing shirts also that were being produced for me. Some of the cast members of E! & Style Networks Jerseylicious wore my designs and agreed to have the entire cast of the show, travel to my hometown to model for my event and some photoshoots!

The first two shirts I made by hand… On my kitchen floor.. lol second two I had produced in bulk which sold out immediately.

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Over 450 people attended my last fashion & had a lot of people reach out to me! It was the best feeling, I can still cry thinking about it.

Here is Tracy from Jerseylicious cat walking it with my little cousin Lindsay.

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I stopped doing the clothes thing, because, well– it just wasn’t my passion. It was just fun at the time. I love doing makeup and that’s what I will stick with. This past year, I’m so busy with work it’s hard to put another show together although I try to do makeup for as many charity fashion shows as I can. That year I won youngest, independent donator for St. Judes! I also won an award at the college I was attending. 2013 I’d love to put another event together.

haha dad’s face looks funny here!

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Another event that took place recently, has truly inspired me to be kind and do good to others. At the salon I work at, a friend was in one morning last week telling us girls about how she woke up to her apartment crumbling and collapsing. She got out safely with her dog, but lost all her personal belongings and everything important to her. Another young client (20s) that didn’t know our friend, had not said a word during her story. She paid for her color and left. She returned about 2 hours later with a gift card $100 to Victoria Secret and $50 to Sephora for us to give to our friend. Truly inspiring and humbling. So motivated to do good for others!

2013 I vow to do good, work hard and expand with my makeup jobs. In the next year you can look forward to videos! I will be doing tutorials, so if there is anything you want to see please let me know!

Remember these important factors for 2013!

-be the person that makes others feel special

-visualize daily

-meditate everyday

-learn to control your mind

-work hard at what you love

-relax!

-take great care of your skin!

-splurge on good quality makeup

-be mysterious

-stop complaining (esp on Facebook)

-appreciate the little things

-get good at something

-read something inspirational every day

-choose your friends wisely

-make an appointment with me to learn how to correctly use your makeup (haha had to throw that in there)

-LOVE LOVE LOVE! INHALE LOVE & EXHALE HATE

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Cheers!!!

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xo,

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Eyes Need Special Care

Hello beauties! Thank you for reading 🙂 This week has been crazy, busy and so hectic! It feels amazing to wind down with an exfoliating facial on, and lay on my couch with my furry friends. This week was filled with bridal makeup… Weddings, trials, more weddings, & more trials. I’m now booking bridal makeup for 2013. I am happy to announce that I am soon to be, a featured vendor on The Knot! The knot is an exclusive website that contains everything you need to plan your wedding. Dresses, ideas, photos, vendors, inspirations, etc. I’m currently in the process of setting up my profile, but by next week it should be up. My profile will also be featured on Kleinfeld’s site, which carries the largest selection of beautiful, couture wedding dresses and gowns. I quickly posted Friday morning, of an incredible wedding video which I did makeup for. If you haven’t watched it yet, please do! The video was done beautifully by Moving Pictures. Definitely made me cry both times I watched it. Sniff, sniff. 
Here is flowers from Friday’s wedding, perfect for Fall and so pretty! And photo of Saturday’s bride, Lindsay. I love her! Also a photo of Erin, one of my past brides who just got her professional photos back!
          
 
I can finally say that I have completed all my weddings for October. I only have a few weddings booked for next month and the following. During the winter months is when I’m really recommending my future brides to set up trials, while I have the open slots and free time available. Because once spring comes, I’m back in full force busy for the wedding season. Seems that everyone is getting engaged! If you are, or know anyone that is please send them my way and have them check out my site if your in the tri-state area 🙂 When wedding season comes to an end, it allows me to pick up jobs doing makeup for runway shows, commercials, events, films and shoots. I have a lot of exciting projects coming up within the next two months, which I can’t wait to share with you when the time comes 🙂 Besides from bridal makeup, I’ve done my fair share of Halloween makeup this month and I’m finding a lot of my clients wanting completely different haircuts and styles for fall! It’s nice to change it up! I’m working on Halloween this year, so I had to celebrate my Halloween last night. I went to Studio square in Long Island city. Music was so good, view was gorgeous, the set up was done great and we got there early to enjoy all the drink specials. Through out the night it got busy but wasn’t too crowded where you can’t breath or move, thank god because I like my space, nothing worse than a room filled with hot, sweaty strangers in costumes dancing and rubbing against you. ugh! Music by Ed Polido & then Miss Jennifer. ❤  
 
                Follow me on Instagram @Alexgill ! 
 
I decided to be a kitten, since 1. I only had 10 minutes (literally!) to figure out a costume and throwing on old black leggings from Metropark a couple years back and a black tank top were KEY &  2. all my friends and coworkers have been calling me the “cat lady” since I rescued these adorable two little kittens that were living in my yard. I just HAD to take them in, it was getting so cold out and it’s been so rainy, they would crawl up into my car to stay warm from the heat in my engine. What kind of person would I be to deny these cute little creatures a warm, loving home, as they sat outside my windows looking in?! I had to keep them. When we took them to the vet, he said that there was quite and age difference (buddah just over 6 months and banks around 2-3 months) and also informed me that they were not liter mates, and told me how incredibly rare it is for these two stray kittens to find each other, and interact with each other becoming best friends. Once I took them for shots, and brought them inside I had to introduce them to my pup Sonny. He adores them. He’s so gentle with them and I’m pretty positive he thinks he’s the kitten’s mother, which is perfectly okay with me. 
 
              
 
Friday night, my good friend Monica and I attended a fundraising event at Marlene Weber Day Spa, in Poughkeepsie. We purchased a $25 ticket which was donated to Miles of Hope and included two complimentary services, along with raffles, food and cocktails. Is that an amazing deal, or what?! Even better, since it goes to such a great cause. Of course for one of my services, I booked a massage, hunching over all day doing makeup is obviously not the best posture for my back. For my second service, I booked an eyebrow grooming with my glamorous friend Stephanie (who has the best brows EVER may I add) If you need your brows waxed and groomed and you live near the Poughkeepsie area, I definitely recommend you going to her. We all know how important our brows are, which frame our faces! Remember thin, is NOT in anymore. This year full, thick brows is what it’s about. So try to grow those brows in and go get them shaped! I wish I took more photos of the event, but I was too busy indulging delicious food, complements of Rossi’s, Brasserie, La Puerta Azul and more. To make the night even better, I won a raffle for a wash, cut & blow-dry and waxing. Oh la la! I never win raffles so I was beyond excited. Marlene Weber Day Spa was also offering 20% off gift cards, and since my birthday is next month, why not treat myself to an early birthday gift?! I purchased an $80 service for $64. Good deal! Over all Beauty Night Out was a success, many donations made to Miles of Hope, I won a raffle, and got to enjoy time with my girlfriends while being pampered!
        Fall headband piece perfect for these cold months ahead!
 
 
So how do I cut & style multiple clients hair,  do makeup trials on my future brides, apply makeup to brides and their full bridal parities, wander off to NYC, attend beauty fundraising events, along with many meetings, dinner dates and errands in between without looking tired, even though I’m BEYOND EXHAUSTED? By taking special care of your eyes of course! 
 

The skin around your eyes is much thinner than the rest of your face so it requires special attention! Dark under-eye circles can make young people look old and tired. Womp womp. They can be treated very successfully with prescription topical creams and lasers. But I obviously prefer natural eye care. 

 

Puffiness: under eye puffiness can be caused by a variety of reasons including diet, allergies or extra fluid in your system. In the morning to treat puffiness, Splash your face with very cold water. Tap gently around your eyes to help move away fluid in eyes. gently press along your eyebrow and around your eye socket with your middle. Place a cold compress under your eyes for 15 minutes. I like to use cold green tea bags that i keep in the freezer over night or cold cucumber slices. Tannin, which is found in teabags, will lower the swelling and discoloration around the eyes. You need to place two teabags in the fridge overnight to chill them; in the morning, get them damp, and then lie down with them on your eyes. Keep your eyes closed and body still for 10 to 15 minutes each day – you’ll see results immediately 🙂 If you don’t have teabags, use an ice cube wrapped in a cloth. Never put ice directly onto the skin around your eye because it can cause blood vessels to burst, which causes more dark circles and discoloration.

 

Dark circles: The skin under the eyes is so thin that in some people the blood passing through the teeny tiny veins near the surface show through, giving that area a bluish or gray cast aka dark circles.  Heredity, fatigue and illness and make under eye circles dark as well. Sleep and concealer is the best options. Make sure you get at least 8 hours of sleep each night. Beauty sleep is NO MYTH! If you want to look good, do everything you can to get a good night’s sleep. And perhaps invest in 100% silk pillowcases. Always use natural eye creams morning and night. 

 

Lush lashes: All your hair, grows in cycles. Eyelashes grow for approximately six months then falls out by a new lash. Never rub your eyes. Even when removing makeup. Be gentle. Before bed, treat your lashes with castor oil or other light oils to keep them clean and conditioned. A friend recommended I try a product called Lash Max which was a conditioner for your eye lashes making them grow longer and healthier. I tried it for about a month and loved it. 

 

Remember to always wear sunglasses in the sun. One of your best beauty tools. It also prevents crow’s feet and eye wrinkles! I like the eye cream by Hylunia and Lilly B. Lily B has a great natural eye cream I adore, which is infused with vitamin K and arnica that helps reduce any puffiness and under eye circles! Lily.B Skincare Multi-Action Rescue Ultra Eye Cream is a great eye cream for those looking to remedy tired, puffy eyes. It’s non-jar packaging makes it an eye cream I highly recommend to anyone!

 

My favorite under eye concealer is Erase Paste by benefit. which is a concentrated, creamy brightening concealer for eyes and face. Application is key. Use your finger and pat the product from the inside corner of the eye and out to give a smooth, natural coverage. You only need a little because too much concealer can actually bring focus to the under eye area. Always start with an eye cream first to hydrate the eye area before applying concealer so it goes on smoothly and evenly. For extreme under eye darkness, start with a concealer that is pink or peach in color. Pink concealers help to brighten a dark blue or purple under-eye, and peach colored concealers brighten a green or gray under-eye. Don’t use a beige or white concealer, It’s only going to make the darkness look gray.  Once you have applied the pink or peach, layer concealer that matches your skin tone on top. Dust the under-eye with a sheer, pale yellow powder to help to set the product and make sure it doesn’t crease. 

 

Okay, time to remove my facial mask off and get my blankets ready to sleep on the couch, with my tea! Everyone be safe during this hurricane sandy storm! Hopefully it doesn’t hit us too hard. Perfect opportunity to stay inside and enjoy “me” time! Xoxo