Entries from April 30th, 2012

Allure Beauty Blogger of the Year Award: Challenge 2- The Winning Formula to Zoe Saldana’s Knockout Hair


So I survived week 1! Thank you to everyone that voted!

For this week’s challenge, we were asked to re-create a celebrity look. I picked Zoe Saldana’s hair. What’s not to love about it? It’s incredibly glossy and is always softly waved to perfection. If it wasn’t for my blonderxia (my need to constantly highlight my hair) I would rock it exactly how she does it.

Not only did I go into how to create those boho waves, I also went over what really makes her hair stand out–the shine. It’s so healthy it can’t help but to outshine everyone in Tinseltown!

So, please take a second and scoot over to http://blogger-awards.allure.com/submission/24 and vote! You can vote once a day and the best part is that you are entered to win prizes each time you vote. This week it’s diamond earrings!

Thanks in advance!

Photo Credit: PRN / PR Photos

The Sun Has Arrived! Stay Protected and Beautiful


As the sun starts to show his beautiful face longer and brighter in these warmer months, so should we! Sunshine provides the body with essential vitamin D, but there is a way to spend time in the sun and get your vitamin D safely. Wear sunscreen! We have compiled a list of our favorite sunscreens, some are tinted, some oil-free, and some for your lips, take your pick!

1) Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturizer Oil-Free. This tinted moisturizer has SPF20 and comes in 10 different shades. Tinted moisturizer is the perfect way to stay protected against the sun, but not give up your foundation. Tinted moisturizer is also a great product to use if you simply need to balance out your skin tone and do not need the coverage of a full foundation. Suggested retail: $42 at Sephora.com.

2)  La Roche-Posay La Roche-Posay Anthelios 60 Face Ultra Light Sunscreen Fluid. This one of the very few sunscreens I have found that leaves a matte finish and does not contribute to oil production on the face. With an SPF 60, this sunscreen is ideal for full sun exposure and can be applied under your makeup. Suggested retail: $29.95 at CVS.com.

3) Dr. Jart + Premium Beauty Balm SPF45 PA+++. A Beauty Balm is a moisturizer, brightener, primer, and treatment serum that is full of antioxidant bio-peptides. Over time, this BB cream will also increase the skin’s firmness and help achieve a more even complexion. This is basically a home run, all-in-one product. Not only does it do all of these wonderful things for you skin, but it’s also a broad spectrum (protects against UVA and UVB rays) sunscreen. Incredible! Suggested retail:$39 at Sephora.com.

4) Baby Blanket Tender Scalps Spray. Don’t forget your head! I fix my hair way off to the side with a very prominent part. If  you’re like me, your part is the perfect and unexpected place for sun damage to occur! Now, you don’t have to sacrifice you fresh blow out because you have a play date in the park on a sunny afternoon! Protect your scalp by using a sunscreen spray made specifically for hair and scalp. This sunscreen has broad spectrum SPF 45, is super gentle (it’s made for babies’ heads!) and the bottle is small enough to keep in your purse. Suggested retail: $5.99 at ToysRUs.com.

5) Banana Boat Sport Performance Lip Balm SPF 50. The lips are the most sensitive spot on the face and also one of the spots most prone to sunburn because we don’t typically think to put sunscreen on our lips. This lip balm is a broad spectrum SPF 50 and is water resistant for up to 80 minutes (don’t forget to reapply). The best part? It tastes like lip balm, not sunscreen! Suggested retail: $2.79 at Drugstore.com.


The sun is here so get out and enjoy it! First, protect your beautiful skin so it will stay that way. I hope you find these options useful and please remember to get to your dermatologist to ‘get your spots checked’ every year (source: skincancer.org).





2012 White House Correspondents’ Dinner


This past weekend, celebrities gathered in Washington D.C. to mingle at the 98th Annual White House Correspondents’ Dinner. Those in attendance included Alicia Keys, Kate Hudson, Kim Kardashian, John Legend, Charlize Theron, Eva Longoria and among several others of course were our dashing President Obama and First Lady.

After hitting up the latest posts and pics from the night there seemed to be a common trend amongst the ladies of the evening. There were 2 distinct makeup looks that stood out amongst the crowd: a Nude Lip/Smokey Eye Combo and a Red Hot Mouth.

  • The First: Smokey Eyes and a Nude Lip

This chic makeup combo never seems to get old amongst celebs on the red carpet and in Washington it was no different. The stars who sported this sexy look included Kris Kardashian, Mary J. Blige, Kate Upton, Kerry Washington and Anna Paquin. I think Ms. Paquin rocked it best taking sultry to a new level with an ultra lush lash, sleek black dress, and a sweet subtle lip (must also be that newly pregnant glow!). She ranked #1 for me that night hitting it out of the park with her overall style: great formal black dress with subtle flirty touches like an open back, just the right accent of jewels with a dazzling hanging earring, soft swept back hair and of course the sexy eye/subtle lip combo.

This look has lasted so long because it photographs great, is neutral to be paired with any color frock, and ups the sex factor without going overboard. I don’t foresee this trend dying down anytime soon.








Duplicate it with these great products:

Revlon Colorburst Lipstick in Soft Nude $8.99

Yves Saint Laurent Rouge Pure Shine Sheer Lipstick – No. 26 Natural Beige $32

Sephora Collection Pro Lesson Palette: Smoky Eyes $28

Too Faced Smokey Eye Shadow Collection $36

  • The Second: Red Hot Mouth

Another timeless makeup trend, the Red lip, graced the White House on the faces of Lindsay Lohan, Zooey Deschanel, Claire Danes, and Elizabeth Banks. Who wore it best? In my opinion, Zooey Deschanel! I love the way the red lip takes on a vintage glam against her jet black bangs.

Click here to see all the reasons why I love a red stained pout! Top 10 Reasons Red Lips are Sexy














Copycat this look with the top rated Reds:

MAC Lipstick in Ruby Woo $14.50

NARS Semi Matte Lipstick in Heat Wave $24

Clinique High Impact Lip Colour SPF 15 in Red-y to Wear $15

Lancôme L’Absolu Rouge Lipcolor in Absolute Rouge $30


Photo Credit: Kris Connor/FilmMagic; Stephen Lovekin/Getty Images


<3 Stephanie

Interview with Celebrity Makeup Artist and Cosmetics Line Creator: SONIA KASHUK!



We had the incredible honor of interviewing Sonia Kashuk! She is a renowned makeup artist, creator of the Sonia Kashuk Cosmetics line carried exclusively at Target, mother, and savvy business woman. Sonia let us in on some of her beauty secrets, told us about her motivations, favorite products, and many tricks of the trade!


A Beauty Loft: In your opinion, what is the most important quality of great makeup?

Sonia Kashuk: That it makes the woman look better. It has to be enhancing and doing something to help the woman feel and look better.


ABL: What are some budding trends for Spring/Summer 2012?

  • SK: Orange is the new black. Orange is a year round color that is a staple, but the emphasis is strong for this season. Orange has a new ‘seasonless’ quality and is being seen everywhere.


ABL:  How long have you been practicing makeup and what has been the hardest part of building your career?

  • SK: 30 years. The hardest part, in a weird way, is the more I know, the more I realize I don’t know. I am always learning.


ABL: What does your daily makeup routine consist of?

  • SK: It varies. I have different levels. It can be next to nothing in my office when I’m trying products. I’m a huge believer in foundation- a little goes a long way.  I also love blush for just a pop of color. I always do my brows and add mascara.


ABL: What is one beauty secret you have or use?

  • SK: Doing something to bring the eyes up. Seeing how you can play with makeup to turn your negatives into positives.


ABL: Can you tell us about what inspires you when creating new products for your Sonia Kashuk Cosmetics line?

  • SK: Women. How and what I can do so that my makeup is easy for them to use. I am my consumer. I use my knowledge of women and think about what we need.


ABL: Who is one person that is a great inspiration to you?

  • SK: Two people: My mother. She’s had 5 kids and is a wonderful person. She does so much. Also, my dear friend Cindy Crawford. She has worked very hard and I learn a lot through seeing her success.


ABL: When did you or when will you know you have found success in the beauty industry?

  • SK: Getting the CEW award was really an amazing experience for me. [In the fall of 2003, Sonia was presented with the prestigious Cosmetic Executive Woman Achiever Award in honor of her many accomplishments and unrelenting dedication. Source: SoniaKashuk.com] Success, I find, is when people talk to me about enjoying my products; the feedback from a woman who is happy.


ABL: What is your favorite makeup brush and what do you use it for?

  • SK: My Sonia Kashuk Small Multipurpose Powder Brush (Available at Target.com. Suggested Retail: $10.79). Touchups, powder, shadow, I use it for everything.


ABL: Can you offer one tip to women with problematic or acne prone skin?

  • SK: Try your best to use very little product on your skin. Leave it as clean as possible. Skincare is essential and only use color products on your face when you need it.


ABL: What is your secret for achieving the perfect red lip?

  • SK: Understanding that it shouldn’t be overly defined. The red lip is easier to wear today then it has been in the past. Use a finger and blur the edges of the lip line, that makes is softer and more easily attainable.


ABL: Finding the right shade of red can be very tricky, can you offer any tips on finding the right shade when considering blue-red vs. orange-red?

  • SK: This is what caused me to develop my cosmetics line! If you are shopping for a red lipstick, look for a brand that has one or two. Smaller brands will have one red that looks good on everybody. We have one red lip crayon and we have yet to find a woman it doesn’t look good on.


ABL: What challenges have you had to overcome by being a mother and a successful woman in the beauty industry?

  • SK: I’m a perfectionist and a control freak, but something has to give. It’s impossible to be good at everything. Some days I’m great as a mom, some days I’m great at work. I do the best I can do. It is hard because of my need to be on top of my game.


ABL: What is your favorite product from your line and why?

  • SK: I’m so passionate about what I do and my brand, but one product I am really proud of is my foundation. The skin looking flawless is so important and one of the hardest things to get a woman to love is foundation. Foundation makes a difference, but it is the hardest consumer attraction.


ABL: Do you ever have a hard time figuring out you own look or makeup routine?

  • SK: There are times I have been photographed and I see things that worked and times I see things that didn’t.  I recommend taking pictures of yourself to see how you look. Its a truer sense of how you actually look then looking in the mirror.


Final note: “To all the ABeautyLoft readers: Don’t ever discredit the power and quality of cosmetics found in the mass market. Be careful where you go. I have brought the quality of prestige [into the mass market] without the price.” -SONIA KASHUK


Sonia spoke with us with such humility and kindness; it was a true pleasure. It isn’t often that a woman who has achieved such success and notoriety is so down to earth and sweet. A giant ‘Thank You’ to Sonia for giving us the time for this interview. We will forever be fans and supporters! Below, you can find some products that are Sonia’s recommended favorites, as well as a few of our favorites! All Sonia Kashuk Products can be found at Target and Target.com.


SK Small Multipurpose Powder Brush; SK Perfecting Luminous Foundation; SK Lip Crayon in Rosey Nude; SK Synthetic Crease Brush



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