Thursday, October 2, 2014

Fall 2014 Beauty Trend

I love the rush of fall.  
Summer always seems so lazy 
and then fall swings around and the long days swoosh
 right into the active bustle of September. 
And it all collides - the Jewish High Holidays and High Fashion. 

Fashion week usually falls out on Rosh Hashana, but I never really miss out on discovering the trends because all I need to know about Fall beauty and clothing, I already learned early last February. And a side benefit of the season's looks being revealed months before September is that as I'm picking out my shoes to wear for the holidays, I already know the it shoe.  I've already purchased the right eyeliner that will last for the 3-day holiday (I am loving Urban Decay's 24-hour colors) and I even know whether it's in to be putting the weight of the eyeliner on my top lid or under my bottom lash line.  In this year's case, you can go either way ala "Cushnie Et Ochs " (exhibit A) on top of the lash line with an exaggerated flick, or, my Fall eyeliner favorite by "Nicholas K" - a dramatic opposite cat eye underneath your bottom lash line (exhibit B). With both looks you want to keep the rest of the make up light and natural.  To spice up the liner look, you can try using some liquid and pencil liners in various deep colors. Navy blue is always a safe bet to add a little extra something and still keep the look natural.
Colorful liquid liners also seem to be all the rage right now - just check out your October issue of In Style for some fun options (pg.262).

Big brows are another fall favorite look of mine that seem to be classic and talked about every season, but hardly put into practice. It is such a great look since it's so powerful yet understated. Below, I show you how you can get the look (exhibit C), though I must warn you: your friends and family may think you just stepped off the Jason Wu runway. The look is also quick to do, which is key when you're rushing out the door, trying to get kids dressed in their holiday finest while making sure the table is set, etc.

We must not forget the ultimate Fall beauty trend which comes around each year with a slight twist, mostly to the color and not much else...the Bold Lip! Each Fall, the fashion houses showcase their bold beauty lip. This year it has taken on a burgundy hue. I really liked the color featured at Rebecca Minkoff, which was a Stila 'Stay All Day Liquid Lipstick' in Amore. Another lip look that really inspired me was Naeem Kahn's Fall look: an ombre lip! Yes, that's right, an ombre lip. Try it with Nars lipstick in 'Fire Down Below' and then [here's the trick they don't tell you at the store] use a brown eyeliner pencil lightly as your lipliner to give that 'ombre glow.' (exhibit D)
This strong lip looks pretty with a very clean face, but if you want more bold and fashion-forward, it works well with a strong brow too.

Try one or try all of these beauty tips over this holiday season. And remember, whatever you do, the most important part of beauty is being content with your beautiful self. Have a happy, sweet, beauty-filled new year!

                                                                         Exhibit A

                                                                            Exhibit B

Exhibit C

Exhibit D

*This blog was posted on


Monday, September 29, 2014

What Masks Do You Wear?

As seen on

I wear many masks. I particularly like ones made with dead sea mud.  But I also wear imaginary masks.  I imagine I am confident sometimes when I feel otherwise.  I imagine I am in a great mood sometimes when all I really want to do is collapse from exhaustion.  I imagine I am a fashion icon when I am going out for drinks with friends. Masks are a great way to beautify (see dead sea mud comment above) protect, hide, and express ourselves.

The Jewish holiday of Purim is this week.  It is a holiday that has a strong, brave woman at the center of its story.  The story of Queen Esther is about a woman who pretends to be someone she is not.  She hides her identity from the King until the opportune moment and then takes off her figurative mask and proudly proclaims her true identity - as a Jewess.  Queen Esther was not sure how the King would respond. The King fully accepted Esther as her true self and she became a great Queen...oh yeah, and saved her people from annihilation. Minor detail.

We all hide behind masks.  Like Queen Esther, we hide until we know we are safe to reveal our true selves.   We build layers to show the world what we wish to show and nothing more.  In this day of complete access via social media we still get to tell the world the story we want them to see and not necessarily our true selves. (My husband always jokes that nobody ever posts a selfie of themselves 'having a blast' doing taxes!)

For many women and girls, the opportunity to show our true selves may seem to not show itself.  Sometimes we need to break out of our "masks" and let our true selves shine through even if we are at risk of being vulnerable.  The outcome of being a real individual will only lead us to greatness as it did for Queen Esther.  In the joy and light of Purim, let us make opportunities to show the world our true wonderful selves!

Now, until you truly shine from the inside out, here are some facial masks to help you shine from the outside in.

Burt's Bees Intense Hydration Treatment Mask - $15

Pure Mineral Anti Aging System Repair Masque - $14.39

Ren Glycol Lactic Radiance Renewal Mask -  $46.70

Ahava Time to Hydrate Hydration Cream Mask - $30

Caudalie Moisturizing Cream Mask - $40

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Spring Back

The timing of fashion week in reference to the season's products we use and the clothing we wear always seems funny to me.  In the fall, fashion week shows us the clothes and make up we will be wearing in the spring. In the winter, when Spring is just around the corner, fashion week shows us the new fall looks.  Technically, I understand why the fashion world must run like this.  The fashion houses need time! Once the last model's slender legs steps off the runway and the last bottle of champagne is uncorked at the after party, they go straight back to work to make sure all the fabulous clothes that we just got to experience are heading in the right direction to the stores and websites so that we may purchase them when spring actually comes around.  The make up lines are also making sure the production of their new spring products will be finished in time for the hungry beauty mavens in all of us. When fall fashion week presents itself in February, celebrities and fashionistas across the world peer back to the looks of September's fashion week to see what clothing and beauty trends they should follow to reflect the upcoming spring. For example, model Coco Rocha wore a bright orange lip to the BCBGMAXAZRIA Fall 2014 Runway Show. I am guessing she was influenced by  Rag and Bone or DKNY spring 2014 shows.

Model Coco Rocha

Rag and Bone Spring 2014

DKNY Spring 2014

Another favorite look of the Spring 2014 runways was a minimal make up heading into the rosier family.  You may wisely ask, 'Does minimal make up really head into any color family?' to which I would simply answer...'Yes, yes it does.'  Over the many years of fashion weeks, minimal make up has appeared and reappeared time and time again.  To the regular, or uninterested eye, this look may seem the same across the board.  Yet,  someone who loves color and texture can see the quiet differences from one look to the next.  And so, this year's spring minimal make up seems to have a rose colored hue. The constant across the board for spring, whether you are doing a strong orange colored lip or an all-over minimal make up look, is the attention to blush detail. On both looks the cheeks are really featured and the color is in the same tribe as the lip hue.  Even though the blush can be subtle if you like, it is still a must-have product come spring.

Isabel Marant Spring 2014

Michael Kors Spring 2014

Olivia Palermo at Peter Som

Being the self proclaimed beauty and fashion lover that I am, I decided these two spring looks need to be tried and true, or truly tried, or...however you say it, I decided to give them a go in my #dailylooks using once again my favorite app picstitch

Chantecaille New Stick in Ivory
Cover Girl truBLEND Fixstick concealer in Light
Mac Eyeliner Powerpoint eye pencil in Industry
Mac  Powder Blush in Godess (discontinued) 
Blush Substitute is Nars Blush in Gina
Orange/red Nars lipstick in Heat Wave

Same as the photo above.
Chantecaille le stylo ultra slim liquid liner
Lancome Hypnose Mascara in black
Tarte Amazonian clay blush in exposed
Nars blush in deep throat
Nars Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in bolero
Nars Lip Lacquer in chelsea girls

Monday, March 10, 2014

Do You Apply Morals To Makeup?

As posted in Hello Giggles on 3/4/2014

I am thinking we are in serious need of new names for some of the make up products out there. "One Night Stand," "Bad Gal Lash", and "Hot Slut Nail Polish" (yes, that really exists!) are not names that inspire me to buy a product!

Let me clarify - I do not judge a "one night stand" because I understand the human desire to connect physically, especially when a long term relationship is not an option. But, it's not something I espouse nor is it something I want teenage girls to be learning from their beauty products.
Nars make up (one of my all time favorite brands) just came out with a blush palette that has 4 of my favorite blushes in the 6 blush palette case, but it's called "one night stand" -- so do I not use it??Why did they have to ruin with that name? The product is so great that people would love it even if it were just called 'Blush.'

Beauty and fashion pave the road for our youth as they follow these two worlds very closely. They copy the fashion runway's clothing and make up looks and make them their own.  Though a name on a beauty product may seem a non-issue, one of the reasons females buy products IS because of the name and its association!  In high school, I bought Benefit "bad gal lash" because it was cool and I thought I was a "bad gal,"but looking back....who was I kidding? I went to a religious all girls school, I never had a boyfriend and I did not do any drugs.  Seriously I should have been buying "good gal" products if there were such a thing.  I digress... We do buy products because of the names.  My sister just got her nails done in a beautiful maroon color because she liked the name of the polish "Rock Star Skinny" by Essie.

As you can see from the ages of 16 (my "bad gal" lash stage age) to 40, my sister's age, names of products still matter when purchasing.  And beauty brands know the power that they hold.  With all this knowledge, how awesome would it be if beauty and fashion companies would set out to inspire and motivate the youth and the adults of this generation?!  How about they name their products things like "Unique + Chic" for a nail polish or, "Spirit Seeker" as an eyeshadow palette or "Loyal Love" for a blush palette....just to name a few.  Beauty brands, those names are on the house...go ahead, I have not put a copyright on them...yet.

I know that not all brands seek to grab our attention by having a racy title. Some products go for our basic pleasures like Too Faced "Chocolate Bar" eyeshadow palette. I mean, if we are being honest, put the word 'chocolate,' 'wine,' or 'coffee' on any beauty product and watch the items fly off the shelves!

The beauty brands out there are so powerful, that for many, they control the way in which we look at ourselves and how we feel as girls, then as women, and then as mothers.  It may be easy to use phrases that empower us sexually since that is all about our looks, but I would love to see them use their strength and start empowering our essence. I think instead of women thinking about the guy they were with the night before, they might feel better thinking about their inner radiance when applying their blush and how it can affect their day ahead. Oooh thats a good one too "Rad Radiance" blush palette. I may have to start my own make up line!

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

To Love is to Serve

Every year Valentines day passes with a flourish of pinks, whites and reds. The world around us starts raining roses and chocolates and cards with little hearts and teddy bears holding little hearts and balloons with little hearts as well. We are assaulted in grocery stores, in book stores, in pharmacies, by many and more products silently yelling at us to hold me, buy me, love me. Whether we believe in this Hallmark-iday oops, I mean Holiday or not, the colors, cards and sweets start seeping into our psyche and we think 'yes, yes, someone shout to me that you love me with cards, flowers, sweets, more sweets, more balloons, more, more, more.'

Although the above paragraph might give you the impression that I am a hater of Valentines day and that I do not believe in the hallmark holidays, I would like to make it quite clear that this in fact is not the truth.  I am a great lover of flowers, chocolates and sweet hand-written-notes. I just believe that all those wonderful things should come at many different intervals during the year. And for me great love is not hidden in flowers, cards etc..  For me the greatest display of love is hidden in the everyday.  

Dov waking up with my son heard correctly,  EVERY morning at 6am because he knows how hard that ungodly hour is for me. Dov doing all of the dishes that filled the sink without me mentioning anything to him.  When I'm sitting at the computer working and I'm surprised with an-eyes closed-Trader Joe's licorice popped in my mouth (have you tried the TJ licorice? I am obsessed!)

When I was younger in previous relationships, I often felt like those cards, flowers and teddy bears.  I would be standing in front of my date, boyfriend or prospective date/boyfriend and be silently screaming 'love me, see me, love me.' Most of the time in some of those relationships my silent screams never ceased because their showering of gifts never completed my need of what I really wanted, which was to not have to question where I am and who I am in my relationship with another.


A couple of years back, on our road trip to California from NYC,  Dov bought a t-shirt that had "to love is to serve" written across the front of it.  We both understood the meaning of the shirt and loved it because we felt its truth. Words are beautiful and abundant and we can use them to express love if we so choose. But the true test of love is not in our words but in our actions....

 I would truly like to write more on this subject but at this moment I simply cannot. Dov just walked in with a glass of wine, chocolates and a beautiful card. He came to wish me Happy Valentines day. He had no idea I was even writing this blog.  The timing is perfect and the card is sweet and has Dov's signature of writing little comments on the card's picture.

'To love is to serve' can be interpreted in so many ways. To me it is knowing your partner. 
While I am (almost) not in need of Valentines day, Dov is not in like of it though he still surprised me with all these goodies tonight because he knows my love of chocolates, wine and sweet-handwritten-notes.  Because I know that his love for me is not solely based on his needs. It is also balanced with what I need in terms of love and affection.

'To love is to serve' is found in the everyday mundane activities and the not so every day little unexpected surprises. 'To love is to serve' is unique to us all as individuals and our particular needs bring new meaning to the overall interpretation of love. Though poets and novelists through the centuries may beg to love truly, to love wholly, to love unselfishly is hard work and if "serving" my love, serves our greater love, I will gladly be the first in line to work for it.

And on that note I am going to hang out and watch some much awaited episodes of House of Cards with my very patient husband (I have been working for a while this evening).

*Even though we did not go out on Valentines day, I squeezed in some time between the Spa and dinner to do a Valentine's day date night look inspired by Naeem Khan's Fall 2014 show...oh, did i mention I went to the spa on Friday? I went during Kol's nap time with Dov's blessings, because that's what I needed.

Mac Eye Pencil in coffee
Mascara wand!
Stila shimmer powder (discontinued)
Use Stila Eye Shadow Trio in gold glow
Mascara CoverGirl LashBlast 24 Hr. in very black
Nars Semi Matte Lipstick in fire down below
Nars Lip Liner Pencil in amazon
Mac Eye Pencil in coffee (link is above)

Friday, February 7, 2014

My week as a Grammy artist.

The Grammy's are one of the most exciting award shows of award season. The Grammy ceremony is heavily sprinkled with some of the top musical acts in the business.  It makes for a very entertaining evening.  It also means that there are many people watching this televised event.  Many women who are watching, observing, taking notes and generally judging how the artists are looking in their Grammy get-ups.  We "oohh" and "ahhh" at the clothes and shoes knowing that most of the items being worn are completely out of our league.  Or, even if the gowns, dresses and footwear are in our financial league, honestly, when on earth will we ever have an opportunity to wear any of them?!

But the make up...the make up is something that not only can we afford, we can most definitely find an opportunity to wear!  We can always find an occasion to try the beauty looks influenced by the ladies parading down the red carpet.

As I watched Lorde perform her hit "Royals," I was saddened that her beauty team had made her look so mature. After all, part of the thrill of her success is that she is only 17 years old and her music is so exemplary for such a young artist.  I understand their need for not wanting her to look too 'pop,' but there should have been a balance, in my opinion, to her intense dark lipstick look with heavy foundation.  So the next day, I decided to do a lighter version of Lorde's look, or what I called a "night-to-day look." I tried to portray how you could wear a heavy deep burgundy lip in a fresher fashion; a bit of peach/pink blush on the apples of the cheeks and a lighter foundation did the trick.  I had so much fun experimenting with the "night-to-day look" make-under that I decided to try a new artist each day for the rest of the week.

Using the amazing app Picstitch - I know, last to the party - I was able to capture the Grammy artist inspired look along with my own before and afters, and a pic of the products used...all in 1 framed pic!
[In tears...] All of your likes on Facebook have truly kept me going and have made my dream a reality! ...and that's me working on my acceptance speech...

Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturizer in nude
Revlon Cream Shadow in not just nude
Nars Soft Touch Shadow Pencil in aigle-noir
Cover Girl LashBlast 24 hour mascara in very black
Nars Blush in orgasm
Burts Bees Beeswax Lip Balm
Cover Girl Lip Perfection in euphoria
(Unknown color in container received from Gucci Westman at one of the fashion shows)

Cover Girl Concealer truBlend Fixstick in light
Cover Girl truBlend Liquid Make Up in classic ivory
Stila Eye Shimmer (discontinued..sniff sniff)
Cover Girl Bombshell Intensity Liner in pitch black
Cover Girl Bombshell-Volume-Mascara in black
Cover Girl truBlend Mineral Bronzer in golden sunrise
Mally Beauty Melted Lipstick Duo in punch/mauve (I only used punch)

Chantecaille New Stick in ivory
Cover Girl truBlend Liquid Foundation in classic ivory
Lancome Color Design in gris fatale
Mally Beauty EveryColor-Shadow-Stick in gun metal
Cover Girl Liquiline Blast Eye Liner in black fire
Cover Girl LashBlast  24 hour mascara in very black
Nars the Multiple in laguna
Burts Bees Beeswax Lip Balm
Nars Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in cruella

Chantecaille New Stick in ivory
Cover Girl truBlend Liquid Foundation in classic ivory
Revlon Cream Shadow in not just nude
Lancome Color Design in gris fatale (only the black shade)
Nars Soft Touch Shadow Pencil in aigle-noir
Cover Girl Bombshell-Volume-Mascara in black
Cover Girl Clean Glow Blush in peaches
Cover Girl truBlend Mineral Bronzer in golden sunrise
Nars Lipstick in Promiscuous (discontinued)
Substitute: Nars Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in belle de jour

Monday, February 3, 2014

Carrying The Weight of a Miscarriage

As posted in Hello Giggles on 2/19/2014

I started the lucky #9 blog many moons ago because I felt there was not enough word on the street about the difficulties - and often muted truths - of parenting, specifically mommying.  Everyone spoke about the joys of being a new mom, but the exhaustion, stress, loneliness, post-partum, (and did i mention exhaustion?) was rarely talked about. And so I did what I've been doing since I was a little girl... I started spreading the word.  This word was not a warning to unsuspecting soon-to-be moms to stop in their tracks and run far away from children.  It was simply a warning from an educational point of view. Just a "heads up soon to be parents you may have some really shitty days but don't worry we have all been there or are still there and we feel you." I sincerely hope that my blogs accomplish this goal.

So in true lucky #9 form I want to broach another subject that is not really talked about...miscarriages.

Having just had one quite recently the pain and sadness of it was difficult for me.  I was early, yet my excitement at growing my family was huge. My husband and I were so joyful to be adding another soul into our family, a sibling for our son Kol.  I was bursting with happiness and couldn't control myself so I told some family members and shared the happy news with our parents.  After all,  I felt that if anything bad were to happen I would probably tell them anyway, of course thinking in my head that is just something you say because nothing is really going to happen.  I already have one beautiful, healthy boy with no complications so I believed that of course this go around will just follow suit.  But it didn't.

I went for an ultrasound and there was just no heartbeat, no movement on screen, the emptiness of the picture on the monitor stared back at me. I went into crisis mode. I didn't cry, I simply asked the doctor what this meant, what should I do, how do i move forward.   He gave me all the right medical answers, we made schedules and booked procedures and moved forward.

Finally I got home and could hear my thoughts. All my thoughts, my visions of pregnancy, labor, early motherhood, siblings, it all seemed to empty out like the picture on the monitor. And left behind was nothing but an ache, a sadness for what could have been, a sense of loss for this soul inside of me that was no more.

What do you do with this kind of loss. It is understandably private for most people. Most women I have talked to have had one or more miscarriages. Only several weeks pregnant, one might not have even shared the news yet. But people were telling me I was glowing, my skin, my hair was sparkling. And now, I have broken out, my hair is shedding as it did after I gave birth to Kol, and once again I am reminded about loss. Move Forward. Move Forward.

This is what I hear in my head.  Move Forward.  Take the time the doctor says to take and then try again. Move Forward.

I believe strongly in the mantra "dust yourself off and try again" but I have never just moved forward. I have always taken time to acknowledge where I am emotionally and how I feel internally.  I dissect things until i am comfortable with them.  So I thought about my loss, the week I found out about it, I bought myself a couple of bouquets of my favorite flowers in honor of the soul that was not to be ours, in honor of the soul that I was lucky to house for a couple of weeks, in honor of the soul that brought a glow to my skin and a sparkle to my hair.  I set the flowers around the house in every room and as I passed them over the next couple of days I smiled and greatly enjoyed the scent of them.  After the week was done and my blood finally started flowing, I placed the flowers in the bin.

I am starting on a vitamin regimen my doctors are suggesting for me. I have learned that a good way to go about taking care of yourself after a miscarriage is to make sure you are sufficient in your vitamins.  You need plenty of Iron since you lose a lot of blood (recommended is 2 to 3 25mg of Iron capsules) Take a pre-natal vitamin so you make sure to get all the good stuff that comes in that little bottle (speak to your doctor to find out which brand is good for you). Eat healthy food, exercise when you are ready and the best advice I received so far was from none other than my mother, who suggested to do something nice for myself.  I am thinking a day at the Spa is in order.  I will do all the things I am supposed to while I wait a couple of months for my body to heal.  And then,  I plan to move forward.