Entries Tagged as 'How-To'

Contouring Palettes: What Are They and Do You Need One?


IMG 3647 Contouring Palettes: What Are They and Do You Need One?

Blame Kim Kardashian. What was previously reserved for theatre, high fashion editorials, and drag queens, the skillful art of makeup highlighting and contouring became main stream with a simple Instagram photo.  In the midst of a major glam session with celebrity makeup artist Scott Barnes, Kim posted the below pic with the caption, “Wanna see how @scottbarnes68 contours?!”

0904 kim kardashian highlighting how to bd Contouring Palettes: What Are They and Do You Need One?

photo credit: Kim Kardashian’s Instagram

While men, makeup novices and children were frightened at the tiger-like streaks of makeup on her face, makeup aficionados’ curiosity peaked and thus began a multitude of diagrams, blog posts, and youtube tutorials outlining their version of the ‘Kim Kardsashian Kontour’ (sorry about that—I had to).  After all, her makeup looks are the most searched on the internet.

Realizing that the trend isn’t going anywhere, beauty retailers are cashing in and products specifically designed for contouring and highlighting are hitting the shelves. But is this a trend you should skip or jump on?

Let’s get to the highlights:

  1. What is conturing? Simply put, using a shade or two darker than your complexion you can contour your facial features to minimize areas you want to appear smaller. On the contrary, you can use a shade or two lighter than your complexion to highlight features you want to stand out. When put together, you can fake cheekbones, a nose job, a smaller forehead and more. The placement of the highlight and contour is crucial to pulling the look off. If you need a refresher,  Danielle covered highlighting and contouring in depth here.

countourhighlightmarks2 Contouring Palettes: What Are They and Do You Need One?


  1. What is a contour palette or kit? A contour palette or kit will have both your contour and highlight together in one kit. Some have just one color for the contour and one color for the highlight. Others, like the Anastasia Beverly Hills Contour Kit featured below, have more than one shade of contour and highlight.
IMG 3575 Contouring Palettes: What Are They and Do You Need One?

Anastasia Contour Kit

IMG 3577 Contouring Palettes: What Are They and Do You Need One?

The top row are highlighters and the bottom row are used for contouring

  1. Do you need one? If contouring and highlighting is something you want to try for yourself, chances are you probably have what you need already. A bronzer and concealer will do the trick.  I like to use Guerlain Terrecotta Bronzing Powder in 08 and NARS Illuminating Concealer in Custard. But if you are little unsure of what to use, a contour palette might help. A palette with more than one highlight and contour color can allow you to mix your way to the perfect shades. Here’s a list of some contour palettes worth checking out:

contour before and after Contouring Palettes: What Are They and Do You Need One?

Whatever route you go, my best tip when it comes to highlighting and contouring is to blend, blend, and blend!! What do you like to use to highlight and contour?




FA1291616E2C1EFFDFE71FFF82805E89 Contouring Palettes: What Are They and Do You Need One?

My Latest Hair Obsession: The Beautiful Curls Hair Care Line



Beautiful Curls Review My Latest Hair Obsession: The Beautiful Curls Hair Care Line

I’ve grown to really appreciate (dare I say love???) my curls now,but my curl routine could still use some help. My previous routine consisted of  wash, condition, and add mousse—which initially does produce shiny bouncy curls. Only problem is that by the end of the day, my hair looked dry and curls fell flat.

So after what seemed like a whole afternoon of youtube browsing, I came across the channel of  SunKissAlba…a gorgeous girl with gorgeous hair and a fun personality. After viewing about 2 years worth of videos in a couple of hours, I was pumped to try her way of doing curls—add moisture, then moisture, and more moisture.

With my new curl information fresh in my mind, I headed off to Whole Foods, straight to the beauty section. After standing in front of the hair care aisle for a good 45 min…looking at all the products, comparing the products, picking up 5-putting back 2 (my normal beauty product shopping routine) I settled on 2 products.  I decided on the Beautiful Curls line–it was fair trade, all natural, and contained Shea Butter (which I heard worked wonders on curly hair). I purchased the Curl Activating Leave In Conditioner and the Curl Activating Creme and tried them out that night.

Can we say best curls ever??? And without the use of gel, hairspray, or mousse. They were soft, defined and shiny—the holy grail of curl must haves. Compliments poured in the next day at work. Sold.

Here’s what I did:

  • Applied the Curl Activating Leave In Conditioner in the shower
  • After combing through the product once I got out the shower, I applied the Curl Activating Creme (I applied both rather generously)
  • Towel dried hair with an old t-shirt (helps prevent frizz) and air dried the rest
  • Once completely dry, I put my hair in a high bun to sleep
  • Take down in the morning and you’re good to go!

Beautiful Curls My Latest Hair Obsession: The Beautiful Curls Hair Care Line


IMG 3572 My Latest Hair Obsession: The Beautiful Curls Hair Care Line

Easy breezy. Style lasts for at least 3 days…any stragglers are touched up with a curling iron. I would definitely recommend this for thicker hair types—fine hair may find the products too heavy.

Any other recommendations??


FA1291616E2C1EFFDFE71FFF82805E89 My Latest Hair Obsession: The Beautiful Curls Hair Care Line

How to Get Down: 3 Easy Steps to a Beautiful, Bouncy Blowout


3Steps How to Get Down: 3 Easy Steps to a Beautiful, Bouncy Blowout


As you might recall, I’ve been participating in Frizz Ease’s #downfor30 challenge and my days for the #downfor30 cause are now numbered. I confess, there were a few fleeting moments when the black elastic sitting on my desk got the best of me and my hair once again found itself in the all too familiar comfort of a ponytail.

But participating in the challenge forced me to not only embrace my natural (and ridiculously voluminous) ringlets, but to learn the best ways to style it, what products work, and how to maintain the look.

It’s a journey I encourage everyone to try and it’s not too late to take the Frizz Ease #downfor30 challenge. Simply snap a photo of you rocking your hair down, upload it to Instagram, and use the hashtags #downfor30 and #sweeps. Not only will you embark on a personal hair self discovery, but you’ll have a chance to win an awesome trip to NYC! For more details, go to www.neverpullback.com/down.

While I’ve been loving my curls, I wanted to do a smoother, straighter style, but still keep plenty of volume and body. I do a “Down Under Blowout” in just 3 steps:

Downunder How to Get Down: 3 Easy Steps to a Beautiful, Bouncy Blowout

  1. Start with freshly washed damp hair. Apply a light hair oil through out hair. I used Frizz Ease Nourishing Oil Elixir. It adds softness and moisture necessary for a smooth blow dry.
  2. Divide hair into smaller sections. Start with a small section and using a blowdryer with a nozzle on it and a round brush, blow dry the hair with the brush over the hair so that hair flips up. This gives you plenty of tension to easily straighten out even the kinkiest of curls.
  3. When section is basically dry, finish drying the hair using the brush underneath so that the hair curls under. This gives the hair a smooth finish. Repeat on all sections until done.

That’s it! Additional straight hair tips:

  • Use a round brush with a mix of nylon and boar bristles
  • Start with hair that’s not soaking wet to prevent drying out hair
  • Sleep with hair in a high ponytail secured with a scrunch to preserve the style
  • Use dry shampoo to extend the life of the blowout or try Frizz Ease’s 3 Day Straight Flat Iron Spray for a longer lasting straight style


Frizz Ease Logo How to Get Down: 3 Easy Steps to a Beautiful, Bouncy BlowoutFrizz-Ease believes that when you pull your hair back, you also pull yourself back. So we’re challenging women everywhere to take on the world hair-first and wear their hair #downfor30 days straight with the help their favorite Frizz-Ease products. Join the movement at NeverPullBack.com.



Disclosure: Compensation was provided by KAO via Glam Media. The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and are not indicative of the opinions or positions of KAO.

FA1291616E2C1EFFDFE71FFF82805E89 How to Get Down: 3 Easy Steps to a Beautiful, Bouncy Blowout

The Nordstrom Beauty Trend Event


IMG 2742 e1400034137244 The Nordstrom Beauty Trend Event

Last weekend I got the chance to stop by the Cherry Hill mall for Nordstrom’s Beauty Trend Event. The event is taking place at Nordstrom stores across the nation.

IMG 2714 e1400034280157 The Nordstrom Beauty Trend Event

IMG 2724 e1400034326759 The Nordstrom Beauty Trend Event

Dozens of beauty experts were on hand to provide one-one-one free consultations, makeovers and discuss the latest trends! Armed with my camera and my sister-in-law, Kristen, we experienced first hand the awesomeness of the Beauty Trend Event (seriously they even had cake pops and a DJ).

Kris is used to being my beauty guinea pig, so she plopped in a chair while Beauty Stylist Nicholas Mancini worked his magic giving her a bronzy night look just in time for the summer. We talked about all things beauty with Nicholas from the importance of a great skin care routine to the universal struggle of reversing the signs of aging and dreaded “man hands”.

IMG 2721 e1400035191822 The Nordstrom Beauty Trend Event

IMG 2726 e1400035135122 The Nordstrom Beauty Trend Event

Nicolas took care to emphasize Kristen’s features using a Smashbox BB Cream to even out her already perfect “young skin” and a deep purple eyeshadow trio to bring out her brown eyes.

IMG 2754 e1400035558507 The Nordstrom Beauty Trend Event

IMG 2775 e1400035318934 The Nordstrom Beauty Trend Event

My favorite products used? Le Volume de Chanel mascara in Prune, $30, a gorgeous plum shade and Sisley Phyto-Lip Twist in #4, a punch of pink in a glossy finish, $50.

In the end, Nicholas took an already naturally gorgeous Kristen and gave her a hot summer look for a night out. Kristen loved the look so much, she looked past the $50 price tag and went home with her own Phyto-Lip Twist!

BeforeandAfter The Nordstrom Beauty Trend Event

Want to get the look? See below for product list:

Products The Nordstrom Beauty Trend Event

  1. Smashbox Litmitless Liquid Liner Pen in Dark Brown, $22
  2. Sisley Phyto-Lip Twist, #4, $50
  3. Smashbox Photo Op Eye Shadow Trio in Sepia, $28
  4. Smashbox Camera Ready BB Cream in Medium, $19.50
  5. Smashbox Photo Finish 24 Hour Shadow Primer, $20
  6. Chanel Le Volume de Chanel, 30 Prune, $30
  7. Chanel Le Blush Creme de Chanel, 62 Presage, $38.50 (limited edition)
  8. YSL Touche Eclat Radiant Touch, $41
  9. Smashbox Halo Hydrating Perfecting Powder, Medium, $40
  10. Chanel Correcteur Perfection Long Lasting Concealer, $40

Go to Nordstrom.com to find out when the Beauty Trend Event is coming to your area!

FA1291616E2C1EFFDFE71FFF82805E89 The Nordstrom Beauty Trend Event

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