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Tote the Rescue!

Working both in a salon and doing house/hotel calls, I am used to hauling all my hair tools with me whenever I work as I never know what unexpected situations I may encounter and I don't want to be without THE tool or product that I need to do the job. I use a traditional style, professional train case that holds a LOT of stuff. While these cases hold a lot of products, they can be unwieldy for home use. But I know some of you have a LOT of hair care products and tools, and that they are taking over your bathrooms!


So, I found a style of tote that is here to rescue you. They're made by Stilazzi and sold at Frends, a terrific LA beauty supply store that caters to the industry but is open to the public.  Even though they are designed for professionals working on set, a "set" bag is a great way for the hair-conscious woman to organize all of her hair styling accoutrements conveniently in a small space.


I have a client who is using one of these now and she cannot believe how much easier it has made her morning routine. Instead of going back and forth to her linen closet for this brush or that thermal protector, or fumbling with an armload of products, she just grabs the bag from the closet, puts it near the mirror, has everything at the ready, and just does her hair. She swears that it saves her at least 5 minutes of fumbling every morning, and she no longer has hair products strewn all over the bathroom! She says it's a great feeling to come home to a clean bathroom that looks like a bathroom instead of a hurricane.


Set bags come in clear vinyl or black–while the clear vinyl is great to see everything, if you are going to put your curling/flat iron in the bag, I recommend that you go for the black bag instead since you don't risk any melting.


Now, go have a great hair day!

Chic on the Cheap

For a bonanza of local sample sales, outlets, warehouse sales and to keep your finger on the pulse of where to get the best bargains in clothing, shoes, and accessories, look no further than Bargains LA.  This website, run by savvy shopping expert Suzanne O'Connor, covers all the best in true bargains throughout Los Angeles and neighboring counties.Recent examples include the BCBG sample sale, LF warehouse sale, and Athena designs for jewelry. The site also lists stores where you can get bargains everyday, without waiting for a sample sale. 



Access to the Bargains LA web site is free, and every listing, including the advertisers, are carefully investigated and personally visited by Suzanne and her staff to ensure that each merchant represents a bonefide bargain. There is even a mobile app you can download for your smartphone so you can go bargain shopping on the fly. If you sign up to be a member on the site you can even ask Suzanne your personal bargain questions (she recenlty gave me a great tip on where to find great deals on designer jeans! Don't worry, I will share — the store is called That Jean Shop), and there is an emailed newsletter that will keep you in the loop when a new sale comes up.


In addition to fashion, you can also find deals on home furnishings and accessories, pet supplies, optical, appliances, electronics, general merchandise…the list goes on and includes pretty much everything except travel, automobiles and real estate.


So, whaddya waiting for? Go forth and shop!

Beauty Bargain Alert!

I have a great luxury bargain find for you that I would like to share. It’s a web site called They feature a lot of expensive skin care and makeup brands and are currently having a sale of up to 45% off! Here is a list of their top brands:


I recommend that you sign up for their emails–this is how I keep tabs on when they are having one of their amazing sales. (I try to ONLY order from them when they are having one of their sales–they have them frequently enough that I can time my purchases so that I am always getting a discount. No reason to pay full price when I don't have to!)


Their current sale is in honor of Mother’s Day and you can get up to 45% off retail depending on which items you purchase. They also have a lot of free-gift-with-purchase offers right now.


Even better, shipping and gift wrapping is free when your purchases total $24.99 and up. And since they are located here in Southern California, their standard shipping will get your products to your door in only a few days. My last order took only 2 days to arrive.


Skin West is a great way to get luxury items for less!


Look Hot while keeping your Cool

With Spring just getting underway, the decrease in stress following Tax Day is like an appetizer, a little preview, if you will, of the more carefree days of Summer that await.  Even in year-round temperate Los Angeles, warmer months and increased daylight often mean more casual dress, less "done" hair, and more natural-looking makeup. At least that is the ideal, but the reality is that looking effortlessly chic can take a lot of work. Sigh.


I can't make ALL the work go away, but I have found a beauty product that will lessen one of the most annoying warm weather makeup mishaps, namely, keeping your make up ON your face, not looking oily and not having to powder or frequently retouch. Enter Shine Stopper Instant Matte Finish with Microsponge Technology! Here are the claims that the manufacturer, Paula's Choice, makes about the product:


  • Controls oil & minimizes the appearance of pores
  • Clinically proven to keep skin perfectly matte for at least 6 hours
  • Unique MICROSPONGE® Technology keeps oily shine in check
  • Leaves silky, powder-soft finish
  • Smooths minor skin imperfections
  • Increases makeup's staying power
  • 100% fragrance-free and contains no dyes or coloring agents



The great thing here is that the claims are actually true and this product does as it promises. Ideal for use on "oily" or "combination" skin all year long, in the summer this product becomes a must-have for all but the driest skin types. Use it in your T-zone if that is the only problem area for you, or all over if your makeup tends to liquefy and slide off.


Honestly, in my opinion this is the best product of its kind on the market–there are many others that claim to do the same thing but either they just don't work, are just "meh", or they work fine but have unnecessary ingredients (fragrance, including masking fragrance) or the latest "miracle" ingredient that in reality does nothing for your face but empties your wallet a little because of the overblown marketing claims or is just a poor value because it costs too much for the measly amount in the tube. Shine Stopper is regularly priced at $21.95 for 1 fl oz. but it is currently on sale for $17.56, though I don't know how long the sale price will last. They also sell a sample size for $0.80 if you prefer to try before you buy. Either way, it's a beautiful solution for carefree makeup that lets YOU shine, instead of your face!


Celebrity Hairstyle Simplified: How To Get Stacey Keibler’s Glamorous Hair


Celebrity Hairstyle Simplified: How To Get Stacey Keibler’s Glamorous Hair


Last week, we gave the Best Down Do Award to Stacy Keibler for her Grade A Academy

Awards Style. Stacy Keibler’s simple style with a twist had heads turning on the red

carpet in an otherwise over-saturated hairstyle choice of full-on fancy updos or a simple

long style. See Keibler’s gorgeous face-framing style and a simple back twist below. It

was popular with you, too. So here is how to do it, step-by-step. Rock it on a night out, or

soften it for a weekend getaway.


Step by Step to the Glamorous Stacey Keibler Do:


1. Hair Prep: completely wash hair and condition only the ends. Oily roots will weigh this

look down.

2. Before blow-drying, in lieu of a conditioner, choose a root lifting product to spray at

the roots and lightweight mousse to brush all throughout the ends. Part your hair to the


3. Use a round brush and polish the ends during the last ten minutes of your blow -ry.

Styling tip: Blow-dry your hair upside down to get more volume/body.

3. Set your hair in hot rollers that are about 1 inch -1.5 in size. Most importantly, DO

NOT release the rollers until they are completely cooled down, or your curls won't last.

4. After the taking out the rollers, run your fingers through some of the curls to break

them up and give the hairstyle a softer look.

5. Section a medium-sized diagonal section in the back from one side of your hairline

and sweep it over to the other side. Twist inward as you get to the other side, and secure

with small bobby pins, and tuck underneath the hair so no one can see it! Make sure to

criss-cross your bobby pins, as they stay in place better that way. Insider tip: use a mirror

behind you and in front of you to help you with this part so that it doesn’t get out of hand.


Voila, you're done! I said it before, and I’ll say it again: I am expecting to see this look

recreated many times over, and hope that my readers are able to after reading this step-

by-step guide. Until next time, happy styling!



My Picks for Best Hair at the Oscars 2012

Rolling Out the Red Carpet for Oscar-themed Hairstyle Awards

The Academy Awards is the perfect time for actresses to shine, and they often do. From a

gorgeous designer gown to beautiful hair, it’s a night showcasing talent and style. While

many lists have gone over the best and worst dressed, in my blog, I wanted to take the

chance to give out my own awards for what I think is really the most important accessory

to any look: an outstanding hairstyle. Several celebrity starlets deserve awards in several

categories: So please wait while I open the envelope.

Best Bangs

With a short, sleek style and sleek bangs to match, Rose Byrne wears them very well,

helped by the fact that she has the perfect face shape for this off-to-the-side-side

part. Even though it’s a down hairdo, it’s so polished and classy. For single-handedly

redeeming bangs, Rose Byrne gets this award. Stunning.

Best Curls

Penelope Cruz has been turning to the retro look a lot lately. It works. It looks classy

and polished, especially with her shorter length. Most of the time, we are used to

seeing this look worn with long hair. A perfect example of that is when Megan Fox did

it. But the fact that it’s more true to the decade it came from makes it more original.

Because ‘timeless’, ‘classic’ and ‘gorgeous’ are words you want to be used when others

are describing your look when you go to such a prestigious event as the Oscars, Penelope

wins for these sophisticated curls.

Best Updo

Emma Stone’s statement red gown and red hair could have been overdone, but instead,

she paired it with a polished updo that made her stand out from the A-List crowd. It’s

shiny and it’s tight and neat, without looking wound-up and hair sprayed to high heaven

(frequent offenders of those faults in updos have been J-Lo and Kim Kardasian, sorry to

say). Simple in the back and pinned up with curls, her style is the kind that you want to

have when you are accepting an award like an Oscar. She certainly wins our best updo


Best Down Do

Wearing hair down to an event like the Oscars can backfire very easily, especially when

the down do is simple. So, this is award winner is a shocker because her style looks so

simple, but the back is done very creatively. Stacy Keibler turned heads all night with

a gorgeous face-framing style and a simple back twist. It is such a simple little switch-

up that you would never think to do it, but when done artistically, it looks amazing. I am

expecting to see this look recreated time and again, so Keibler takes this award hands

down. Beautiful.

Best Short Hair


Really short hair seems to be the antithesis of Hollywood glamour these days, but don’t

tell that to Michelle Williams. Williams wins this award because she looks absolutely

supermodel-like with her short blond locks that framed her perfect, glowing complexion.

For rocking the ultra-short ‘do and still looking absolutely stunning, she wins the award.

It was hard to cut the categories off there, but I could keep handing out awards until the

next Oscars are handed out. What do you think of my picks, is there anyone you would

have chosen for a category instead? As my picks are subjective, I’d love to hear your

thoughts. Also, are there any of the styles that you would wear? The one that I get the

most requests for, I will create a step-by-step how-to for you so that you can recreate the

look yourself.

Until then, happy hair styling!