Travel and summer just seem to go together—the kind of travel that's fun: vacations, seeing family and friends. But it also usually means lots of stuff to cart around.
I travel for a living. My "office" can be a motor home on a property off Mulholland Highway, in Malibu, California, or a studio in Miami, Florida. And as a professional freelance makeup and hair stylist, I need to get all my lotions and potions from point A to point B all in one piece (not to mention my personal stuff). There have been many times where I have opened my suitcase and there has been a body lotion explosion or conditioner leak. Not only is it a pain to clean up but I am one of those people devoted to certain product that I can't always get another one in a pinch. I also consider myself environmentally responsible, and although I appreciate all the travel size stuff out there I try to reduce, reuse, and recycle whenever I can. So it's with great enthusiasm that I share one of my favorite reusable travel companions The GoToob by Human Gear.
Here's what I LOVE about them:
First, the sizing makes sense. They come in three sizes: 1.25-ounce is plenty large for a solo week’s supply of shampoo, conditioner, or other must-have cleanser. The 2-ounce size has a suction cup that attaches to the shower wall, thus making it super convienient in hotels, which often have very little shelf space. The 3-ounce container is large enough for a family trip to the cabin. All three sizes are within TSA carry-on regulations for air travel.
They're neat: All the containers have large openings that make filling and refilling easy. My favorite is the "no-drip" valve that helps the cap stay clean, and prevents leaking, especially on planes.
They're organized: There is also a window in the collar where you can choose between common contents such as shampoo, conditioner, lotion, as well as a blank space where you can write your own word.
They're safe: GoToobs are also food-safe and are 100 percent BPA- and PC-free. So you can even bring your favorite salad dressing or ketchup along! (I am on a plane as I write this and I have one filled with agave, my coffee sweetener of choice).
Last but not least, the looks: They are super cute! The GoToobs really are the perfect travel companions. Best of all, they'll never ask, "Are we there yet?"
Did you ever have "that girl" in school? You know the one: pretty, smart, talented, athletic... You didn't want to like her, but when you met her you realized she was nice, too.
Well, that's how I feel about Tarte: I didn't want to like it, so I avoided using it. It just felt too hip...but once I used it, I was hooked. Here's why:
First, it really does have it all: pretty on the outside, substantial on the inside. It's an easy-to-understand product mix—they don't fall into the trap of offering too many products that all do the same thing.
Plus, Tarte proves that glamour can be good for you. The products are formulated with ingredients that are natural as well as having great performance. And their components are made from recyclable or post-consumer recycled material and can often be re-used to help reduce environmental waste.
Their signature product is the cheek stain, which works wonderfully as a modern cheek stain. It's a gel-based formula which blends easily and looks incredibly natural on the skin, packaged in a cool push-up stick. It was an instant best-seller and still one of their most popular products. And you kind of can't go wrong with the shades—they are all really beautiful.
Natural Beauty and True Love are two of my favorite colors.
Next, lips—and this is where I really fell in love--LipSurgence matte lip tint in “Fiery.”
How to describe this chubby pencil? Silk comes to mind. When formulating makeup, you are always balancing texture with wearability—especially when it comes to lip products. What that means is the creamier the product, the quicker it disappears; the drier the formula, the longer it lasts. I love a good, matte lip stain, but it means my lips become dry as a result.
Tarte's matte lip tints are infused with their high-performance natural LipSurgence technology, which the company claims is clinically proven to increase moisture content. I found that the color lasted all day and my lips felt great, even after I took my makeup off. The pencils are also peppermint-infused so they smell great as they glide on.
Tarte is going to be my go-to line for easy summer glamour. It just goes to prove you can have it all.
The best part of going to an event—regardless of the event—is the getting ready.
Friday was the Pink Carpet event at Crave in downtown Minneapolis. I accompanied Katie Dohman and fellow bloggers Kate Arends and Justine Hornick. I always imagine I am going to have oodles of time to prepare: take a luxurious bubble bath, polish my fingers and toes (while I have a face mask on), then do my hair and makeup. Finally, I would slip into my outfit all with time to spare. Of course, the reality is a little different.
The day of the event we had an inspirational photo shoot during the day at Erika Ludwig's studio. Justine did a beautiful updo on Katie during the downtime, and the style lasted day and night. We tried some great new summer lip shades from MAC Cosmetics. As usual when you're having fun, time flew. Suddenly all my appointments collided and I ended up running behind the rest of the day, which cut into my prep time.
So how do I get "pink carpet ready" in a jiffy, and still enjoy every minute of the experience? Go for simplicity. The key is knowing what looks good on you and sticking to it. When you’re running late, it's not the time to try something new, unless it's jewelry, and remember: Deep breathing helps!
Here's a step-by-step:
I dashed off to the MNMO offices to meet Katie Dohman, Kate Arends, and Kelly Fitzgerald, whose makeup I freshened up for the event. A sure-fire way to get office-to-evening ready is a little foundation refresher, concealer (only where needed), and a tiny bit of blush.
Kelly before and after.
Kelly has beautiful eyes framed by a great fringe. This is where I thought I could make the most difference in a short period of time. First, I applied Makeup For Ever Aqua Eye Waterproof Eye Liner Pencil thickly at the lash line and smudged it to create a smoky, dramatic eye. Then extra mascara and a Bobbi Brown lipstick in a shade complimentary to Kelly's natural lip color. That's it—and she looked fabulous, as you can see here!
Now for a top secret little tip: If you are at an event and your skin starts going from dewy to greasy, sneak into the restroom. Tear off a piece of a disposable toilet seat cover and blot excess shine. They are usually made of the same paper as oil blotting papers—who knew?! Now you do.
A little girl talk and some hijinks on the way and we arrive at the party—with not a moment to spare! Crave was hopping. The company was excellent and the people-watching was fun! And as always, the food and drinks top notch, all for a great cause.
This weekend, my daughter and I attended the University of Minnesota Relay for Life.
My niece's best friend is the director of fundraising for Colleges Against Cancer/Relay for Life and had asked me to donate a makeover (which I did) and also to help out with the Locks of Love hair cutting/auction. The relay and supporting the fight against the disease is close to my heart. I have seen firsthand, family and friends fight the battle. Most have won and some have lost, even after the bravest of fights. What I find most important in all this is to be strong, positive and to always be true to whatever cause it is you get behind.
During the Relay, a group of college girls that have grown out their hair, have it cut on stage as the crowd donates money. The donor gets to choose their cutter. I was there to even out the hair afterwards.
Now, these are college students—19-to 23-year-olds. And although they had decided to cut their hair for a great cause, their decision to cut was causing quite a bit of anxiety and worry about the sudden, major change in their appearance. My daughter, who had come along to "help" me, suddenly decided to donate her hair.
It's funny how that little thing made such a difference in the mood of all the other participants. When asked if she was sure about cutting off 10 inches of her hair she said: "It's just hair. It will grow back, plus Mom ... someone needs it."
Maybe my daughter has been listening to me all these times I have reminded her that "the only constant in life is change." Even though I am someone who constantly works on changing peoples' looks, it still made me pause and consider—really realize—how important it is to be open to it.
Have a question just ask me.....