May 29, 2011

Staycation In Style

Well the hubby and I did the "staycation" thing this weekend in our city of Athens, and we had an absolute blast!!  The urban dictionary defines a "staycation" as a vacation spent close to home.  In our case, we stayed in our own city at the uber fabulous Hotel Indigo, which is literally maybe 8 miles away from our home, but felt like a world away!!

This is just what this mom of 3 needed, 
the feeling of escaping for just a little while to rejuvinate my batteries!!

I feel pictures say a thousand words (and are more fun to look at than words sometimes!) so I just thought I would share with you all some pics from our fun Saturday and Sunday quick getaway.  If you are a parent and don't want to travel too far away from your kiddos but need to get away, I definitely recommend staycation-ing in your hometown if it's cool like Athens is!! 

We really got to experience and enjoy our own city in a way we'd never done before.  Here's how the day played out...

Started relaxing in our lovely SUITE (pics to follow) with my new fave cocktail of SkinnyGirl Margaritas.  Yes, Bethenny Frankel from the Real Housewives of NYC/Bethenny Ever After, has truly hit a homerun with this product, so yummy!

The entrance with fridge and small kitchen bar

The bathroom- it had 2 shower heads and makeup remover cleansing cloth packets 
(how'd they know JennySue had forgotten her facial cleanser??-this was perfect!). So often hotels just offer the basic bar soap- this was a nice touch.

Our sitting area.  Got to catch up on some shows other than cartoons!

The pillows on this king bed were honestly the most comfy I've ever laid my head on.

We also were within walking distance to downtown so we did some leisure shopping. I picked up two rad vintage looking tees and tanks from Junkman's Daughter's Brother- an Athens staple.  They have a massive collection of the most random items you can imagine.  

I got this Def Leppard tee and Wonder Woman tank- they are fun!! 

We did some happy hour cocktails on a rooftop bar.  These pics show how me and the hubby were very busy on our cell phones!! Ha!!  This busy doesn't compare to our "busy" at home with 3 kids under 5!

I'm pretty sure I was tweeting here;-)

We also got to enjoy a late night yummy dinner at Nona.  How's this for a fattening but fulfilling dinner?

My filet drenched in Bearnaise sauce, creamed spinach, and crunchy potatoes.  Heaven on a plate.

This was my hubby at our dinner spot being silly by flashing his dollar bills around!

We finished up our evening at another local bar, East West Bistro.  Right outside of this place, I also got my picture drawn by a local with an amazing talent.  Michael Davenport (shown below) draws portraits of people and the UGA mascot... with his mouth!  

He doesn't have either of his hands, but has made a name for himself by doing something so unbelievable and always having a super positive attitude and smile for everyone that comes into contact with him.  He drew a picture a few years ago of my oldest son and it still hangs on his bedroom door. Now I've got my very own Michael portrait!

Our hotel breakfast before we headed back home. 
 No, that's not a beer at 10am, it's a glass of apple juice!!

Our fun filled and relaxing weekend of course had to come to end, and it did with a yummy outdoor breakfast that we had at the hotel before we left.  I got a smoked gouda bagel with sausage and eggs and scallions, while my hubby showed me up by getting a healthy bowl of oatmeal!!  

I thoroughly enjoyed my travels and leisurely weekend and would definitely recommend the Hotel Indigo to EVERYONE that is looking for a chic and modern place to stay.  I would like to take this moment to thank the awesome grandparents that helped out with all 3 of my children in keeping them happy and busy while me and the hubby were happy and lazy;-)

May 27, 2011

Somewhere Between Moisturizer And Foundation...

Somewhere between moisturizer and foundation...lies the tinted moisturizer.

Me wearing my "home-made" tinted moisturizer!!

This is a product that helps to even out skin tone without obscuring your natural tone and looking too makeup-y!  There aren't very many tinted moisturizers out there to choose from surprisingly enough.   I find that odd since it is such an easy makeup product to wear and is basically fool proof because you don't have to work as hard when blending like a regular foundation.

My skin from afar.  It's looking pretty covered, even, and fresh!

I did a blog a couple years ago on how to make your own tinted moisturizer HERE, but recently updated this "how to" mixture.

I've added two new key ingredients for making the perfect lightweight summer foundation:

  • Liquid bronzer
  • Moisturizers with SPF & anti aging properties

Two Dermagenics moisturizers used on left- one with SPF, one without. 
 L'Oreal True Match foundation in C3
Rimmel London's Face & Body Luminizer in You Glow Girl 

On my original idea, I used the original Oil Of Olay beauty fluid which had no SPF in it.  But of course now it's not an option to go outside without some sort of SPF protection in the summer, so I actually made two formulas this time- one with SPF for when I'm outside and one with an anti-aging moisturizer for when I'm just hanging inside with the kiddos.

Close up of my tinted moisturizer.  
The addition of the luminizer/bronzer adds such a healthy and natural glowing property.  
My skin doesn't look dull when the bronzer is incorporated.

I used two moisturizers I was so generously sent to review by the skin care line Dermagenics:

1. Ultra Intensive Anti-Aging Moisturizer w Peptides (no SPF).  I have super dry skin, and this definitely took care of my dry skin issue as I felt well hydrated.  It is lightweight in feel and has zero scent to it which I like.  However, I have not seen any anti-aging properties such as fine lines and wrinkles disappearing or any skin firming.  But it is a good moisturizer to mix stuff with and it soaks in super fast!

Not that this is super obvious, but I slather on the tinted moisturizer all the way to the collarbone.
I want to make sure NEVER to leave out the neck when adding hydration and color.

2. Sun Savvy Solar Shield Facial Moisturizer w SPF 20.  This moisturizer also has zero scent to it but has the added bonus of a big SPF of 20 which I have used when I'm going to be out in the sun, at the park with the kids, and other outdoor activities.  It is a creamier slightly heavier lotion than the anti aging one but still soaks in well.  It claims to be water resistant, which I can't really attest to bc I haven't been to the pool or beach yet, but it seems to make my tinted moisturized combination stay in place when I'm out in the heat watching my boys play golf.

To create mine own concoction was super simple, and yours can be adjusted depending on your skin care needs (more hydration, or more coverage). 

I mixed it like a cocktail- I used 2 parts moisturizer, 1 part foundation, and a little less than 1 part of liquid bronzer (how's that for exact measurements!ha!), then put it all together in a cleaned out Lancome freebie tub of moisturizer (I had already used their moisturizer and added my new stuff) and swirled it together.  I then apply it to my face by dipping a QTip into the tub and dotting on my face then rubbing in with my fingers or a sponge.  

I wore my tinted moisturizer to dinner with my girlfriends last night. 

We got together to celebrate with our gorgeous prego friend across the table from me who's having a baby soon- isnt' she a beauty!

We ate at the yummy Speakeasy in downtown Athens (a personal favorite of this group!), and shared numerous tapas of coconut shrimp, veggies with Gruyere cheese fondue (to die for!), beef tenderloin skewers, spinach salads, and much more!  Between the 5 of us ladies, we figured out we have 11 kids- soon to be 12!  So of course, we mama's work up quite an appetite during the day running after our little ones and making it through a days work.  We need this girls night out at least once a month!

Voila!! I'm able to put my best face forward with my new creation and let my skin shine through!

Dermagenics products were graciously sent to me for consideration and review.

May 24, 2011

Rainbow Brite Lives

Rainbow Brite was one of my all time favorite cartoons in the 80's, 1984 to be exact.  Well that ages me huh??  Who cares, the 80's were fun, and she colored the world with love!!!  What I remember most was that she was so cute and positive, two attributes that make me smile.  But she was a children's cartoon, so those two attributes are a must right??

My version of an extremely colorful Rainbow Brite inspired face!

Anyway, my sweet little daughter was wearing a super "bright" madras halter dress the other day (see sweet girl below) and it inspired my current "Rainbow Brite" colorful makeup look.

My Rainbow Brite inspired Vivian- minus the blonde ponytail and stars!!  
She has the positive attitude though!

So often I get asked, "Can you do anything other than natural bridal makeup??  In other words, can you ONLY do SAFE makeup??

Well, actually, yes, I can step out of the browns and taupe box, I am not afraid of color!!  In walks my muse, Rainbow Brite.  Here is how I accomplished my obscenely colorful face:

My everyday face.

My brightly colored face!!

Products used (my color palette inspiration at right): 

1.  Bobbi Brown Brights Palette ("samba"- orange, "sea foam" and "jade"- blues)-orange from lash to crease, and blues on the lower lash line.
2.  Nars eyeshadow in "moulin rouge" (purple)- used on upper liner and crease
3.  NYX jumbo eye pencil in "milk" (white)- used along lower inner waterline
3.  Napoleon Perdis colour disc eyeshadow #92 (hot pink)- used on cheeks
4.  LipFusion InFatuation  lipgloss in "Screen Siren"- used on lips

 I liked how this angle shows the extreme lacquer look of the lipgloss I used,
as well as the underneath of the eyes!

Are you surprised that JennySue is wearing such an "out there" makeup look when this was her before...

My neutral BEFORE- please excuse the hair.  It wasn't about the hair today, just makeup!

My extreme bright AFTER!

Granted, this look is quite extreme for me to feel comfortable running to the grocery store with my 3 kiddos, but it sure is fun for a night out!!  I broke my rule of picking one feature to play up, either eyes or lips.  Because in this instance, I decided to play up EVERYTHING!!!  

What to you think about bright makeup and not balancing out the use of highlighting one feature over the other and going all out??!

May 22, 2011

Girls Run The World

The new bumpin' Beyonce hit track, "Run The World (Girls)" that she just performed on the Billboard Music Awards tonight has inspired my blog title for the day!!  You can check out her new song by clicking this link to the actual BBMA site- it is a very different sound from Mrs. Beyonce than we've heard in the past, but I like the futuristic sound!!

My baby girl Vivian who runs my world- and I love every minute of it with her!!

Now I wouldn't call myself a huge crazy feminist, but I certainly do love being a female.  I want to instill in my own daughter that she can be a strong person with strong opinions but to enjoy the softer side of being a lady.  We CAN be all things right?? Who says you can't rule the world while wearing high heels and a fabulous bright lipstick?!

Since my job mainly deals with women (I mean, I have done guy-liner ONCE in the past and put the occasional concealer on a father of the bride)  I thoroughly enjoy getting to meet and work with a variety of female personalities.  So I thought I would just post some pictures of some great ladies I've worked with lately at a few weddings I've had the pleasure of being the makeup artist for.

This shows how much fun I have with my clients- 
wish I could remember what this bridesmaid had me in stitches about!

I've met women who are mothers like myself (one of the toughest jobs in the world in my opinion, but very rewarding!), to high profile lawyers and nurses (where would we be without nurses?? we'd all stay sick!).  Girls do run this world according to all the fab ladies I've met!! The variety of women that I get to meet is amazing, and the fact that I'm in their faces working in their personal space, it allows me to find out a lot about them.  I always like a lot of dialogue when I'm working.

The first group of pics are of a wedding I was hired to do in beautiful St. Simons Island, GA.  The weather couldn't have been better for this wedding and the whole entire bridal party was a joy to work with.  And I worked with a record number of faces, all by myself, 14 faces in one bridal party!! I stood in one spot from 8am until 4pm, and loved every minute of it.  We were in the bride's parents house right near the beach, with the most incredible natural light lit room a makeup artist could ask for.  Yes it's the little things like natural light and good windows that make me smile when working;-)

 Me with the fabulous and beautiful bride Ashley.  
She was glowing from the inside out and was the most relaxed bride, EVER!!!

This is 9 of the 14 I worked with, but bc there are so many of them, I couldn't get close ups of everyone!

 3 lovely bridesmaids/ladies I worked with!  I hope these big smiles mean they liked their makeup!

The fabulous MOB who was just radiant and so gracious to allow me in her home!

Working on bronzer around the perimeter of the face. The best place to apply it!

I also got to work with another wedding party where I worked with a bride and her beautiful mother.  I absolutely love meeting MOB's because they are such an important part of the bride and who she has become.   This duo was no different. They were a joy to work with and showed such a strong mother daughter bond.  And they were super cool with me doing before and afters which are always fun to see the transformation!

 Rachel's BEFORE.

Rachel's AFTER.  

 Me with the happy and beautiful bride!! 



She was concerned about wearing any blush at all, but I convinced her
it was so necessary and that blush is a woman's best friend.  She ended up loving her peach blush!

The mother daughter duo after their hair and makeup was complete!  

Big thanks to Republic Salon of Athens for allowing me into their business to do her makeup.  
They are the masters at bridal updo's and hair do's in general!

I love love getting the opportunity to meet every single woman I come into contact with and am always impressed with what these women do.  And after working with these most recent bridal parties, I realize that... girls CAN run the world!!

May 19, 2011

Foundation Tips Into Your 30's

Sometimes a picture speaks a thousand words.
And this one shows how I feel as my 30's are rapidly flying by,
 getting closer and closer to that 40 year mark...

Yeh.  This is my 5 yr old being sprayed in the face by his slip n slide, he didn't even know what hit him...And now he's about to enter real kindergarten, where does the time go???

This is my 5 yr old's pre-k graudation ceremony, sniff sniff. 
Unfortunatley, we are minus 1 of our 3 kids in this pic, it happens- 
you can't get the perfect family pic all the time right??!

As much as I am embracing the years as they pass by, I also don't want to look like the years are passing by as quickly as they actually are.  A big part of looking your best (at any age) is to work your makeup to your advantage and to wear appropriate makeup for your specific skin needs.  Since I'm in my 30's there are definitely some changes I am experiencing with my face.  And getting your foundation right is what can make or break people guessing your real age, and your fantasy age;-)

I'd like to think I could work my makeup to make me look as good as Nicole Scherzinger above (almost 33 yrs old like me!).  She is new hot commodity now that she's going to be MC'ing The X Factor with Simon Cowell!!  I might need to step up the self tanning though...

Here are two main issues that can start happening to your skin when it enters the 30's:

  • Fine lines start to creep up and become more prominent.
  • Sun damage is starting to rear it's ugly head and taking a toll on your overall skin tone.
Now that you know what you're dealing with in this age, here is my strategy when using foundation to correct them.

1.  Use a primer that contains silicone to soften the tiny creases and set the canvas.  Smashbox PhotoFinish (at right, cult favorite!) and Laura Mercier's Foundation Primer are two top picks that have the magic ingredient.  Remember, primer goes on after moisturizer, before your foundation.  A little goes a long way.

2.  Dampen your sponge very slightly before adding your foundation to it. This creates a more sheer application which is also build able if you need to add another layer.  Start at the inside (nose area) area of your face and work out with short strokes.  As we age, thicker foundation is NOT better, it's more aging.  Actually, this always rings true!!  Keep your layers light!  Lancome's Teint Miracle ($37) is getting a lot of love these days in the magazines.

3.  Add a light application of translucent (colorless) powder to set.  Using a powder puff is the best way to apply this product, and it should be pressed, or rolled, into the skin for the best coverage.  Again, moderation is key so that you don't end up looking too chalky.  This is to just to help lock things into place.

What are your favorite foundation secrets for a more flawless and younger looking skin??