Friday, February 5, 2016

3 Valentine's Day Lip Looks

 Valentine's Day Lip Looks

Valentine’s Day – the official holiday of smooching - is nearly here, so it’s time to think about your luscious lip plan.

Today I am giving you 3 date night lip options combined with a little color theory class, breaking down some color options for those of you with a cool complexion and those of you with warm undertones.
Read on and pucker up!

Valentine's lip number one is for those of you who don’t want to do a big lip, but feel like more than just chapstick. Try using a lipliner to shape your kisser, and top it off with a colored lip gloss. In these images we've left the liner where you can see it, but in real life blend through it with your lip brush and make it invisible.


Icy and pink glosses such as Nars lip gloss in Striptease
icon look fabulous on girls with a cool toned complexion, while soft peachy tones like Nars lip gloss in Giza
icon are beautiful on a warm toned girl. 


Valentine's lip number two is all about your pink game. Moving into a full lipstick our warm undertone gets a lovely coral based pink which compliments the olives and golds in her skin. Try MAC "Flamingo Park" lipstick in Flocking Fabulous


Our cool undertone model got a blue based pink, breathing magic into her complexion and making her teeth look super white. I love MAC lipstick in All Fired Up


Valentine's lip number three is a feisty bold red lip – the ultimate Valentine’s lip! Girls with a cool toned complexion look amazing in a blue based red, I'm obsessed with Charlotte Tilbury Matte Revolution Lipstick in Red Carpet Red


while warm toned girls are best in a true red or an orange based red. (pictured here in a true red).
If you are looking for an ornage based red lipstick you cannot go wrong with MAC lipstick in Lady Danger


The lip models in this story were actually 2 of my makeup assistants! Whitney is our cool toned girl, and Therese is my warm complected model. 
Here are a couple of bts shots.

Therese in the makeup room getting a soft, glossy lip

Whitney on set getting a muted red lip

This story was originally written for Phoenix Bride and Groom Magazine.
Check it out here:
Photography by Jessica

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Chic And Healthy Soups To Take To Work (And Make Your Co Workers Jealous!)

This post from Career Girl Daily came into my in box 3 weeks ago and rocked my lunchtime world!

Gluten Free Instant Noodles image from
recipe below

I love having soup for lunch in the winter. (or what we jokingly refer to as winter here in Phoenix, where it doesn't actually get too cold!

Gluten Free Instant Noodle Cup Recipe From Gluten Free On A Shoestring

But when I'm working I don't want to bring those store bought cups of msg-rich, powdered, just add water soups that are guaranteed to make you swell up by early afternoon, and I don't want to bring Tupperware containers of soup from home to heat up in a microwave either.

Kelp Noodle Pot image via Career Girl Daily
But how about homemade noodle cups with fresh vegetables and a multitude of options?? In a chic glass container? I am so hooked!

Kelp Noodle Pot Recipe from Deliciously Ella

Homemade chicken and vegetable pot noodles from

The concept with these soups is that you are filling a jar with wholesome goodness and then when lunch time rolls around you just add boiling water, let it steep for a few minutes, and you are good to go!

The Pho Jar image via Career Girl Daily

The Pho Jar Recipe from

They don't just taste fantastic, but they are so visually appealing. 
You feel satiated and satisfied and yet you've had a low calorie, fat free lunch that is both colorful and nutrient rich.

I bought these French Hermetic Terrine Jars at The Container Store. The middle size is perfect for a lunch soup. It's important to get glass jars, not plastic. The glass ones look better and won't stain.


This weekend I'm going back to buy some of these 
Panoply Canisters, because I think they are also made of glass and I think they would look pretty amazing too. 

Panopy Canisters from The Container Store

What I have learned doing these is:
 *You need to soak rice noodles over night. Boiling water on dry rice noodles doesn't get them soft and edible.
*You can make a bunch of these ahead of time (they look super pretty in your refrigerator) and just throw one in your bag in the morning on your way out the door.
*In a pinch if you need more flavor or don't have time to prep a sauce-base you can just throw in noodles, fresh vegetables, some kelp a miso paste.

There are 11 more recipes in the original post on Career Girl Daily

While clicking away on every recipe that Career Girl Daily had in their post I found some fab blogs to follow, including Deliciously Ella, Gluten Free On A Shoestring and Kitchen Sanctuary

If you have some good ideas for a chic and healthy soup recipe, tell me about them in the comment section below!

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Destination Wedding, Amalfi Coast

Have you ever thought about having a destination wedding on the Amalfi Coast?


I was on the Amalfi Coast for a few days in December, working on new details for my upcoming Glam Italia Tours. 
My friend Adriano de Falco is a tour guide for the Amalfi Coast and Cilento. 

walking along the path to Arechi Castle

While we were scouting excursions for my upcoming Glam Italia tours, Adriano took me up to the incredible Castello di Arechi, or Arechi Castle, an 8th century castle that sits up on the hill, keeping watch over the beautiful coastal town of Salerno.

8th Century Arechi castle

While he was showing me around this amazing old castle, Adriano was telling me fascinating stories about it's history, what happened there 1400 years ago and why it was built. 


inside the castle walls

Arechi castle

At one point we walked out onto a terrace with staggeringly beautiful views of the bay that stretched all the way to Cilento, and that also looked out over the hills and the trees. 

a couple of seconds of cloud cover

A cloud passed over the early morning December sun for just a moment, then everything exploded back into color again.

Adriano pointing out something in Cilento from the terrace of Arechi Castle

While he was telling me about places we could take my travelers in Cilento, Adriano casually mentioned that this was the terrace that they used for weddings.

Wait - what???

Adriano knows me as a travel writer and private tour guide, so he didn't know about the makeup artist side of my life, let alone the makeup artist who does weddings!

I asked Adriano to send me photos from a wedding held here

wedding receptio at Arechi Castle
Vivimi senza paura....

the view from a wedding reception at Arechi Castle

wedding reception at Arechi Castle in Salerno
Now back to my photos...

I can't even tell you how many brides over the years have told me that they would love a European destination wedding or a wedding in a castle, or a wedding on the Amalfi Coast, but the cost was too prohibitive.


I guess you just have to know where to look!
If you check the price sheet for so much as a cup of coffee for a wedding at the other end of the Amalfi Coast in Positano, you will probably fall over. But at the southern end of the coast in Salerno, its a whole different world. 

Amalfi Coast Road view from the castle

Salerno is totally affordable. And its beautiful, and there is an 8th century castle on the hill with views to die for and gorgeous terraces to have your wedding or wedding reception on.

view of Salerno stretching all the way to Cilento from Arechi Castle

look to the right and all you see are mountains

inside the castle grounds

My wedding photographer friends would just love to shoot a wedding at Arechi Castle! There are so many fantastic spots to photograph.
There are also tons of places to hide out when you need a break from the action.

a hidden corner inside the castle grounds where you can sneak off and take a break

And if you're not getting married wouldn't it be a blast to have your birthday party or some other event here???


view of the coastline from Salerno to Cilento, from the Arechi Castle walls

walking back to the parking lot

Find out more about Salerno here in a post I wrote about the Glam Italia 2 Tour

If you are planning a trip to the Amalfi Coast, or will be in Italy and want to pop down there for a couple of days, contact Adriano for apartment rentals and bed and breakfasts. Adriano runs the Bed and Breakfast Association in Salerno, so if his apartments are full he has incredible contacts for all the others, plus he can advise you on which parts of town to stay in.

His other business is running daily excursions throughout the Amalfi Coast and Cilento. He will be taking the travelers on my next Amalfi Coast Glam Tour on all kinds of fantastic day trips, as well as taking us all on the incredible Pathway Of The Gods walking trail. (Read about it here: 10 Things To Do On The Amalfi Coast)

For information on the Arechi Castle, booking events at Arechi Castle, day trips on the Amalfi Coast and Vacation Rentals/Bed and Breakfasts in Salerno contact Adriano di Falco here: Casa Vacanze Il Duomo Apartments and Excursions

Arechi Castle is in Salerno, at the south end of the Amalfi Coast. You can fly into any major Italian airport and get a fast train directly to Salerno.
Salerno is 40 minutes from Naples by train.
Find flights to Italy here:


Monday, February 1, 2016

Clearing The Clutter

So how is your Monday morning looking?
This is how mine is looking.


I was on a fashion shoot yesterday that ran late into the night. You'd be amazed at how many Sunday shoots happen!
Anyway, today is my Sunday, and this is what I'm doing.
I am obsessed with clearing the clutter from every aspect of my life. I want everything to be streamlined and simplified. 
Funnily enough it's taking much longer than originally planned. Somewhere between being a single parent and working non-stop I'm not keeping up to my schedule, but I am getting there one day (literally!) at a time.

As much as I hate tidying and doing housework, I love shopping at The Container Store, so I look at it as a deal - get this room stripped down,/area decluttered and the reward is buying something new at The Container Store.

My office is now a very beautiful grey and white, and I have been buying up white furniture for it from The Container Store, including this really cool White Leaning Bookcase
icon and a white file cabinet
icon similar to this one.
The Container Store does not give me free products in exchange for reviews. But I seriously wish they would!!

Anyway, before I get started on the next project I'm going to enjoy a cup of coffee and read some more of the de-clutter bible,
Marie Kondo's fantastic New York Times bestseller The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing

Oh and congratulations to all the winners of the VIP Passes to the screening of The Choice giveaway. I know you are going to love this film! Winners were notified by email, but there is a list of them on the Rafflecopter widget in the blogpost (see here)

Last week I was working with author and producer Nicholas Sparks doing press for the movie, which was so much fun. Everyone loved the movie! If you are in the mood for a good romance, The Choice opens this Friday (February 5th) nationwide.

Nicholas Sparks doing breakfast TV for his new film, The Choice

Happy Monday everyone!

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Winter Skin Rescue

So how is your mid-winter skin doing?
For most of us January means dry, sensitive skin. Thanks to the colder weather, central heating and biting winds, the complexion gets dull and loses both luminosity and clarity.

Which means you need a strong game plan if you want to maintain or retrieve gorgeous skin.


I am a huge fan of Korean skin care and the concept of layering these amazing products. (Learn about it here: How To Layer Your Skin Care, Korean Style). Using these super high performance (and very inexpensive!) products has completely changed my skin. Depending on what is going on with my skin I can address it by changing just one product in the sequence, or adding in something new. 


The Essence

Korean women consider this to be the most important step. What it does is speed the cell turnover rate, which makes skin smoother and brighter. Essence provides multiple intensive ingredients in just a single drop, and takes them deep deep into the skin where they go to work. You apply essence before your moisturizer.

Innisfree Jeju Sparkling Mineral Essence

I just changed my essence to Innisfree Sparkling Jeju Essence
icon. This one is made with thermal water infused with minerals that heal the skin from the inside out. The mousse formulation is super rich in nutrients, keeping the skin hydrated and healthy, and is the perfect way to protect winter skin. 

The Ampoule

The Ampoule is like a super condensed version of the essence. You can use ampoules to target specific skin issues - dry skin, clogged pores, uneven skin tone, excess oil - whatever the condition you want to treat there is an Ampoule or serum for it.

Another thing I recently added in (which has been a lifesaver!) is 
the Propolis Light Ampoule by Cosrx

Propolis Light Ampule

Bee propolis is a natural antibiotic which gives extra hydration while it cures skin and soothes irritation. You will notice dryness disappears and skin gets radiant almost immediately.
You only use a small drop of the ampoule, and massage it into the skin after the essence and before the moisturizer. I've been using this one for a few months now and love it.

I order all my Korean skin care products through

Each time I place an order I order extra sheet masks. They are super inexpensive, and quick and easy to use.
I change them up based on what my skin needs. This time I ordered Botanical Mask Packs in Rose and in Aloe


Have you tried any Korean skin care products yet?
Tell me which products you have tried and if you loved them or not, in the comment section below.

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