Beauty is in the eye of the beholder...and those of us holding the mascara wand.

After two decades of covering the beauty industry, I've come to learn what makes it so alluring. Finding the perfect shade of makeup to match your skin tone, adding a swipe of eyeliner to give your tired eyes a lift, discovering an innovative new product line, or indulging in a totally luxurious spa treatment. My experiences have been documented in magazines, newspapers and websites worldwide. I've tested newly formulated products in the lab, explored hair removal options, shopped for lipstick, added shine to my hair and succumbed to massage marathons--all in the name of beauty. I've written press releases, hosted makeover events and co-authored a Do-It-Yourself Beauty book (Alloy). On this blog, I write about products and services that I come across every day as well as those that have been provided by publicists or the companies that make them. Either way, I write what I think. I hope to share some of my insights--and bring you the latest, greatest beauty news right here. Join me in the quest to find all things pretty.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

ole henriksen fights winter skin

We're having a wacky winter in New York--ridiculous snowstorms, torrential rains and whipping winds. You can wrap yourself from head to toe in coats, scarves, hats and gloves...but unless you hide behind a heavy-duty ski mask, your face is exposed. Ole Henriksen comes to the rescue with its Skin Insulator comforting creme with SPF 15 ($35). They should have a stash in Vancouver! This creamy concoction has Grape Seed Oil to nourish skin and Borage Seed Oil to prevent irritation, dryness and water loss. It smells a little fruity so I never leave for the day without a healthy dose. At night, I opt for Ole Henriksen Invigorating Night Gel ($45), an AHA gel that actually smooths and tightens your skin as you sleep. Designed to reduce the appearance of fine lines, pigmentation and breakouts, it really revives skin and you wake up feeling refreshed. Another favorite is the Fresh Start Eye Cream ($38), which feels rich and soothing while it smooths and firms the under eye area. Talk about sweet dreams! Purchase these and other Ole Henriksen products at

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

expert advice: revive winter skin with Votre Vu

While dreams of warmer weather grow more frequent, winter is still here. And what better place to put the ravages of the season to the test than at last month's Sundance Film Festival. Makeup artist Olaf Derlig made Marisa Tomei paparazzi-ready within minutes using Votre Vu products from Paris. He started by applying Wrinkle Eraser all over her face to give her glowing skin. This magic potion actually erases crows feet and fine lines around lips. (How can a product with such a tough job actually smell so good? Is it the Manoi Tiare Oil?) Then he smoothed lips with Luxe Lips to add moisture and shine. Makeup artist Jessica Liparoto relied on the Attentive line to whip Adrien Brody into star-shape. "He's very particular about what he puts on his face and tends to stick to what he knows," says Liparoto. "I was very impressed with Tragic Magic Rescue Creme. It completely balanced him out. I also used Champagne Kisses Enhancing Lip Balm on him." Makeup artist Jordan Long used Votre Vu Habitude Men's Daily Face Crème SPF15 on Joseph Gordon Levitt (Hesher). She said, "It hydrated without looking greasy." She also applied Tout Le Monde antioxidant eye gelee to combat slight puffiness and fatigue. Makeup artist Jordan Long also worked on up-and-comer Jennifer Lawrence (Winter's Bone). "I used the Tragic Magic Rescue Creme to calm her skin as she had slight redness," says Long. "I also used Champagne Kisses Enhancing Lip Balm for a nice nourishing base before I applied lipstick." I followed this tip and I haven't left my apartment for a week without it. Talk about velvety smooth--it glides on and blocks winds that whip up unexpectedly. It's supposed to minimize fine lines too--any help is appreciated! To shop for these and other Votre Vu products, go to