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.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

pur thing

Trends come and go, and your product needs change as you age. Wouldn't it be great to have a collection of products that work for all situations and all stages of your life? Pür Minerals delivers with high-quality, mineral-based color cosmetics and treatment products. The products contain super-fine micronized minerals for excellent, natural-looking coverage and they don't have irritating fragrances, drying talc or oil that can clog pores.

Some of my favorites:

4-in-1 Pressed Mineral Makeup: Great for all ages and skin types, it's a foundation, powder, concealer and sunscreen in one. The soft powder glides onto skin and blends in flawlessly so you can secretly go undercover. It has SPF 15 so it's ideal for summer and comes in a practical compact with one side for the makeup and mirror and a separate compartment for the sponge applicator.

Lip Tint SPF 15: It glides on smoothly and feels luxurious on your lips. Plus it delivers color that lasts. I tried Ruby Sunset which was a bit too deep for me at first but turned into a pretty pink after a quick blotting.

Lemon Maximum Moisture Cream: It's super rich and hydrating so it works great on dry, rough areas. Try it now before you reveal your birthday suit for summer. It also has a very subtle lemon scent that won't drive you crazy if you're wearing it all day. I smooth some on in the AM and PM and love the results.

Go to for more info and to check out the entire Pur Minerals collection.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

fur real: beauty products for your fluffy friends

Why should humans have all the fun? These luxurious doggie grooming products--designed for the discerning dog--will have Fido glowing in no time. FUR products by J Mikel are ph-balanced, clean rinsing and safe to use on dogs, cats and humans too. Actually, in an ironic twist, they're made for animals and tested on humans.

What's in the formula? Powerful free-radical fighting anti-oxidants, beneficial essential fattyacids, natural sunscreens, and therapeutic essential oils. Sounds like a perfect skin care concoction if you ask me--which is not a surprise, since J Mikel spent years in the beauty industry, working with well-respected brands such as Estee Lauder’s Aveda, Neiman Marcus and Bergdorf Goodman. Her extensive experience with aromatherapy and perfumery has played a big role in developing her dog collection.

The line highlights two puppy-pleasing essentials: Morning Seed and Calendula Cleanser and Detangler. The cleanser is soap-free, moisturizing, has a fresh citrus floral scent and is designed to nourish your dog's coat. The detangler is a silky, leave-in conditioner that moisturizes, repels dust, detangles knots and adds shine. Plus, it works on all coat types: silky, ruff or curly.

Fans of the line include groomers, dog-loving celebrities and dog care experts--not to mention celebs like Miley Cyrus and Mariah Carey. But true dog lovers will also adore FUR's accessory collection featuring dog silhouette note cards and the FUR dog ID key ring. Along with the company logo and products, they were inspired by Zachary, J Mikel’s West Highland Terrier. So chic!

This adorable pet line can be found at top apothecaries, department stores, beauty websites and upscale dog emporiums. To view the collection, go to or buy via the online shopping cart, After all, nothing's too good for your pooch!