Behind the Look: Melanie Inglessis

Melanie Headshot

Meet Melanie Inglessis, one of most in demand makeup artists in Hollywood. Working with A-listers like Rosamund Pike, Kate Hudson, Olivia Wilde, Lea Michele and Cameron Diaz, she's been swamped during awards season.  Here' she gives us a peek into her makeup kit and dishes how to get a mini face lift.

Describe the most exciting project you’ve worked on lately.

Working on the most exciting project right now but it's secret! Hit me back in July!

What’s your beauty philosophy?

Confidence is beauty.

What are the top five must-haves in your kit and why? 

1. Talika eye patches! They're the best in the business and are re-usable up to three times! It tightens the under eye skin, helps with puffiness and dark circles.

2. Organic Pharmacy Rose Water  You can apply this all day long to rehydrate the skin.  On the plane, on a hot day!

3. A peachy blusher to add to any make up. It's freshen up the look.  Kevyn Aucoin The Pure Powder Glow in Dolline is the best blusher for everyone.

4. A good concealer!  Cle de Peau concealer is the best!

5. Chanel Bronze Universal is a great product for a very natural sun kiss glow.

Have you discovered any new products lately that you find impressive? Giorgio Armani Lip lacquer are pretty amazing, because the color and intensity is very strong.  Also, Orlane Anti Aging Oxygenation System is just AMAZING!

Spill your best beauty advice. Inner beauty is as important as outer beauty!

What’s the one tip or trick that you think all women should know? A little highlighter on the inner corner, the brow bones and outer corner of the eye ( in an upward movement) will make you look like you go a mini lift!!

Behind the Look: Charles Baker Strahan

charles-baker-strahanBesides coifing celebs and models like Leighton Meester, Kathy Griffin,  Lauren Conrad, Lily Aldridge and Molly Sims, I've also had the privilege of having my hair done by Charles Baker Strahan, Celebrity Hairstylist for Herbal Essences.  He's one of the most genuine people in the biz and truly, I mean truly, knows his craft.  His beauty philosophy is so well thought out, it might make you think twice about your hair the next time you leave the house.

Describe the most exciting project you’ve worked on lately. There are so many varied experiences that I have had and that I am truly grateful for. From being the celebrity stylist for Herbal Essences, to being on the E! Series "Scouted" and other on-camera experiences, and even the transformational color/cutting work I get to do in the salon - it's all so exciting.

My current highlight is working with Kathy Griffin on set for the E! Fashion Police.  We have had a relationship for over four years now, which is hard to believe how fast time flies, but our relationship has evolved and she gives me a lot of freedom to change her color and cut and style her hair in so many different ways. The show gives me the license to kill and I'm determined to make her hair different every episode!

What’s your beauty philosophy? Beauty and truth are constantly evolving. The greater the relationship I have with my clients and the more that I know them and their "essence,” the easier it is for me to open up their esthetic and show them how the physical expression of beauty is the truth of the moment they are in.

I love showing people how far they can stretch themselves and how varied they can be in that expression. Beauty and your physicality are your unspoken ways of telling the world around you who you are and how you would like to be received. Be intentional in your choices but open to the possibilities of how you can change. Being fluid with your identity lends to being graceful and that is truly beautiful in any situation.

  1. What are your top five must-haves in your kit and why?  Herbal Essences Naked Volumizing Soufflé – it is an ultra-light and flexible mousse ideal as a base product to do just about anything
  2. Herbal Essences Wild Naturals Illuminating Dry Oil – helps to restore taxed and tired follicles needing shine and softness
  3. Boar bristle round brushes - they polish the cuticle and create shape that allows hair to have life and movement which is essential
  4. GHD Air Blowdryer - the tri-zone technology provides even heat that reshapes the hair but doesn't "cook" it. So, if you straighten the hair you can go back and add curl after
  5. Marcel Irons Hot Tools – you can be more dexterous with them – I can do almost anything with these


Have you discovered any new products lately that you find impressive?

The things most important to me and impressive are the ones that have been around forever. However, I do love it when they take a product and update it, like dry shampoo. Dry shampoo has changed SO many people’s “hair life” in the last few years!

Spill your best beauty advice. The thing I tell EVERYONE is not to try too hard. If you have a look that you are going for, use it as inspiration but leave room for the unexpected. Watch how your hair is responding to what you are doing without judgment and you might suddenly find that what's happening is better than what you were initially going for.

Also, my favorite aha moment is when someone was caught in the rain or they are running late and don't have time to “do” their hair so their hair has the chance to just do its thing and ends up looking great. Be easier on yourself - chances are you'll learn to embrace your uniqueness instead of lamenting why you don't look like someone else. You're always going to be you!

What’s the one tip or trick that you think all women should know? If you just took a hot shower and turned your bathroom into a tropical rain forest, don’t try and style your hair in that environment!

Put your product in your hair while it's still wet. Use the water in the hair to give you an even distribution and wring out the excess moisture before letting it dry. If you are spending most of your effort blow drying really wet hair with a round brush, you are mostly just wearing yourself out. Let the product do its thing and this will likely cut your styling time in half.

It’s also important to remember heat changes the shape of hair and coolness sets it in. So when heat styling, let your hair cool in order to lock in your style.

Keep up with Charles Baker Strahan on Twitter and Instagram.

Behind the Look: Rita Hazan

RITA-HazanMeet the Celebrity Colorist who's responsible for Beyonce's highlights, Rita Hazan. Most recently she brightened the songstress's hair with honey and platinum shades.  In this interview, she proves you don't need to spend a lot of money to have good hair.

What’s your beauty philosophy? Healthy hair keeps color longer.

What are the top five must-haves in your kit and why?  a. Root Concealer b. Weekly Remedy c. Shu Umera Shampoo and Conditioner d. Ultimate Shine Color Gloss e. YS Park Y3 brush


Have you discovered any new products lately that you find impressive? Deesse’s Elujuda (Mo) Mellow Oil. You put it on hair while it’s wet, and it makes it easy to blowdry and keeps your hair shiny.

Spill your best beauty advice. Take care of your hair, use good products, and if you’re spending a significant amount of money, do so on your color because your hair is the focus of your look. If it’s not right you can’t take it off and put it to the side – it’s part of you.

What’s the one tip or trick that you think all women should know? If you have gray hair, you have to try the root concealer. Spray it around your hairline and you’ll never have roots again. This is amazing for women with brown hair especially.


Describe the most exciting project you’ve worked on lately. My newest launch, Weekly Remedy. It took a long time to create a conditioning treatment that is strong enough to make a difference without going to the salon.

Behind the Look: Sabrina Bedrani

Sabrina Bedrani Headshot 2014[1]

Recently responsible for Felicity Jones's makeup look at the Golden Globes, Celebrity Makeup Arits, Sabrina Bedrani, is known for creating clean, beautiful looks.  With a roster of clients like Sandra BullockJulianne Moore, Michelle Williams, Lizzy Caplan, and Elizabeth Moss, I'm sure you've seen her work before. Here, she dishes on her go-to beauty products and advice to live by (for all of you lovers of a red lip)! 

Describe the most exciting project you’ve worked on lately. I recently worked on an editorial shoot with Peter Lindbergh and Amber Valletta. Even though I worked with Peter quite often now, having Amber there made it such an iconic Peter Lindbergh shoot, like the ones I used to look at in magazine when I dreamed of being a makeup artist.

What’s your beauty philosophy?

I always try to have a fresh, youthful approach to my makeup. I believe you should enhance one’s beauty with makeup, not hide them behind it.

What are the top five must-haves in your kit and why?


1- Shu Uemura Eyelash Curler, nothing opens up the eye more than nicely curled lashes, and the Shu Uemura is just the best one on the market, it fits any kind of eye shape.


2- Dior Crayon Eyeliner Waterproof in Trinidad Black, because I can create so many looks just with that one pencil, you can just put it inside of the eye on the waterline, or line the eye all around, use it to line just the top along the lash line for a cat eye, or use it all over the lid and smudge it ( with fingers or the little sponge at the end) for a smokey eye, and it won’t budge.


3- Orlane Super Moisturizer Light Cream, because it really moisturizes without leaving a greasy film, it absorbs quickly and leaves the skin supple and ready for your makeup application. sabrina-beldrani

4- Laura Mercier Secret Brightening Powder, because it’s the perfect for under the eye, it seals the concealer, brightens the eye, but it’s super light so it won’t stay in the lines. Most powder are too heavy for the delicate under eye skin. sabrina-beldrani

5- Dior Eyeshadow 5 CouleursCuir Canage, It has the perfect fall colors for day and night. You can use the colors separately, the lightest one is perfect for day time alone or along with the 2 other Medium tone ones ( one more brown the other more plum). The darkest color can also be used on its own or added to the other ones for a more dramatic look. Perfect for going from a daytime to nighttime look. And it is flattering on everyone.

Have you discovered any new products lately that you find impressive? Talika Eye Therapy Patch, Charlotte Tilbury foundations, Dior Fushion Mono Eyehadow.

Spill your best beauty advice.

Don’t over pluck your eyebrows. let them grow, it’s more youthful to have full eyebrows, and if you don’t know how to do it, don’t touch them, go see a professional.

What’s the one tip or trick that you think all women should know?

If you wearing red (dark) lipstick, the best way to make it last is to apply a lip liner all over your lips before putting on your lipstick. It will make it long lasting and it won’t bleed.

Behind the Look: Ken Paves

ken-pavesMeet Victoria and David Beckham's hairstylist, Ken Paves.  Yes, he works with the sexiest people in the world.  I love his philosophy on beauty and his hot tool recommendations may make you think about replacing yours.

Describe the most exciting project you’ve worked on lately. My new hair care range, Ken Paves You Are beautiful available at Walmart.

What’s your beauty philosophy? The most beautiful a woman can be is confident. She must embrace and celebrate her individual and unique beauty and be her own definition of beautiful.

ken-pavesWhat are the top five must-haves in your kit and why?

  1. Sulfate free, paraben free, dye free, and synthetic fragrance free shampoo and conditioner regime like my Ken Paves You Are Beautiful Range
  2. Mason Pearson mixed bristle brush
  3. Super Solano Blow Dryer
  4. A hooked elastic band for ponytails
  5. Flexible hold hair spray. I can create any look on any hair type with these five tools.

Ken-PavesHave you discovered any new products lately that you find impressive?

Mine of course. I also love the new Unite flat iron, it is great for creating a variety of texture from straight to wavy!

Spill your best beauty advice. Break all the rules!

What’s the one tip or trick that you think all women should know? How to work with their own natural texture and love it!!! For every day hair, I love a cut that works with your natural texture that you can air dry and it looks great!

Look for Ken Paves on the sixth season of Biggest Loser makeovers soon!  You can also follow him on Twitter here.

Behind the Look: Jenny Cho

jenny-choWelcome to “Behind the Look” – a new feature that showcases the talent behind the looks we love – the real celebrities in my eyes.  

Stylist Jenny Cho works regularly with leading ladies including Jennifer Lawrence, Amanda Seyfried and Jennifer Garner.  Not only should you read this interview to get to know her, but also because her best piece of advice is to, "Keep it dirty."  My kind of girl!  Enjoy!

Describe the most exciting project you’ve worked on lately.

It seems like every project is as exciting as the last one so it's hard for me pick just one!

What’s your beauty philosophy?

Be your own kind of beautiful.

What are the top five must-haves in your kit and why? 

jenny-choSuave Professionals Touchable Finish Lightweight Hold Hairspray – I love this hairspray because it locks in style without leaving hair stiff or crunchy.

Suave Professionals Natural Infusion All Day Body Leave -In Foam with Seaweed – Effortless waves is one of my favorite styles and this leave-in foam helps you get it. I’ll usually apply this foam to towel-dried hair before blowing it dry for added volume and movement.

harry-josh-flat-ironHarry Josh Pro Tools Flat Iron – It’s important to invest in a good hair dryer and straightener, and Harry Josh makes excellent ones.

Hot Tools 2-inch Curling Iron – I can do almost anything with this iron, whether it’s beachy or wavy hair, adding body, or giving a slight bend.

Ibiza CX1 Brush – I'm really loving this brush right now. It's amazing for detailing hair.

Have you discovered any new products lately that you find impressive? I'm seriously so impressed and in love with the new Suave Professionals products for 2015, but you’ll have to wait till January! Lots of exciting innovations to come!

Spill your best beauty advice. Keep it dirty. Don't wash your hair every day; second-day hair is always better for styling. Second-day hair doesn’t have to mean greasy though!

What’s the one tip or trick that you think all women should know?

One tip that every woman should know is having gorgeous hair is healthy hair. Keep your hair in good condition by using weekly deep conditioning treatments and follow up with regular trims. It doesn't have to be every 6-8 weeks, but you can tell when your hair doesn't behave and move the right way. That's when you know you need to put a little life back into that hair of yours, and get to the salon!

You can follow Jenny Cho on Instagram and Twitter to see all of her work.

Behind the Look: Napoleon Perdis


Welcome to “Behind the Look” – a new feature that showcases the talent behind the looks we love – the real celebrities in my eyes.

When I first met Makeup Artist, Napoleon Perdis, I couldn't stop smiling.  His positive energy lights up a room and his knowledge of painting faces surpasses many.  Trust me, you want to get to know this guy.  Here's his beauty advice, must-haves and use of donkey milk.

Describe the most exciting project you’ve worked on lately.

My latest Masterclass tour in Australia! I shared my personal makeup tips and tricks with my amazing partners across and taught them how I prepare a face for the everyday customer, runway, trend, and more.

What’s your beauty philosophy?

Beauty is about confidence and empowerment. You are in control of the image you project to others. Be the very best version of yourself you can be, and do it every day.

91GVKitQU7L._SL1500_What are the top five must-haves in your kit and why? 

Optrex Eyedew Dazzling Eye Drops - These drops make the whites of your eyes pop immediately, helping to diminish any signs of fatigue.

Hand Sanitizer - Clean hands are a MUST when you are a makeup artist! Always store some in your kit and use before beginning makeup application.

Breath Mints - You have to get up close and personal with clients as a makeup artist and nothing can ruin a makeover experience quite like bad breath.

Glycerin - I mix this with water and put the combination in a spray bottle to create radiant, glowing skin all over the body on photo shoots. To really amp up the glow factor, I also mix in a bit of my Auto Pilot Radiance-Boosting Primer. The result is gorgeous, super shiny skin.

Brush Cleaner - It is imperative to clean your brushes after each use to keep them in top condition and for hygienic purposes. Always keep a bottle in your kit and spray on brushes after each client.

Have you discovered any new products lately that you find impressive?

Donkey Milk! Cleopatra was known to bathe in the youth-enhancing milk, and I took her ancient beauty secret and made it modern with my Auto Pilot Hydrating Milk Cleanser. It leaves skin soft, supple, and cleansed. It’s especially amazing for dry or mature skin. I personally use it on my face and body – and I’ll never turn back.

Spill your best beauty advice.

Never forget to bring out your inner celebrity! Treat every day like you’re stepping out on a red carpet. It sounds cliché, but when you look good, you feel good, and that translates to every aspect of your life.


What’s the one tip or trick that you think all women should know?

Always use a primer! I can’t say it enough - not to prime IS a crime! One of the makeup mistakes women make is not allowing their foundation to become one with their skin, and primer is an easy but effective solution. It ensures a smooth landing for your base and keeps skin looking fresh all day long. My Auto Pilot Pre- Foundation Primer is gentle on skin and soothes the complexion for a flawless finish. If your skin needs an extra boost of radiance, my Auto Pilot Radiance-Boosting primer will lift and flatter the face thanks to its glow-giving properties.

3 Makeup Tips we Learned from Georgia May Jagger

Georgia-May-JaggerWhile talking with British model Georgia May Jagger at the Rimmel London Spring 2015 preview, we of course, knew she was going to be beautiful and charismatic, but it was a pleasant surprise to hear all the fantastic beauty tips she had. It was while talking about her beauty role models (Veronica Lake and Audrey Hepburn) and first makeup experience (Tinkerbell nail polish and Hello Kitty eye shadow) that Jagger also gave us some great insight on beauty tips and tricks she lives by. 

Georgia-May-JaggerTake off your makeup

Think achieving model-perfect skin is difficult? Well according to Jagger, it’s not. It’s as simple as taking off your makeup before you go to bed, something we all fall guilty of skipping every now and again. “I know that it’s boring, but it’s one of the most important things I think you can do.” We have to say, we 100 percent agree with her.

Break the Rules

After explaining to us that her model mom, Jerry Hall, would just “show up to shoots with her makeup already done and they would just kind of pretend to do it,” she let us in on her favorite makeup tip she learned from her mom.

“I learned from her you can do a lip and an eye and a red lip in any situation and it doesn’t have to be tacky,” she explains. “I think there is a way to do everything so you don’t feel like your trapped.” Follow Jagger’s advice and go for that bold pink lip and metallic eye shadow. Just because they’re both bold doesn’t mean it won’t work.

Use Brow Mascara on Your Lashes

When showing off her favorite products from the new Rimmel London Spring 2015 collection, she even popped in a tip using the brow mascara in a way other than for grooming your brows. She suggested that after curling your lashes, apply the clear colored brow mascara to your eyelashes to separate and keep them from clumping.

Dying to give that last tip a try? The brow gel along with other new Rimmel products in the Spring 2015 collection will be available in January.

Behind the Look: Joanna Vargas

Joanna-VargasWelcome to "Behind the Look" – a new feature that showcases the talent behind the looks we love – the real celebrities in my eyes.  

First up, Celebrity Facialist and Founder of the Joanna Vargas Salon in NYC, Joanna Vargas!  Known for perfecting the skin of A-listers like Maggie Gyllenhaal, Rachel Weisz, Naomi Watts and Julianne Moore to name a few, she has more than a few tricks up her sleeve, especially when it comes to getting celebs red carpet ready.  Ready to meet Joanna?  Read on!

What is the most exciting project you’ve worked on lately?

I've been working with three actors recently on their skin for specific movies they were all working on. It was fun to work towards creating the image of the character in the movie.

What’s your beauty philosophy?

I feel strongly that anyone can have great skin with the right tools.  The key is to use organic products based on what the skin needs to perform at its best.  Good nutrition for the skin will always yield the best skin you could ever imagine because the body assimilates natural ingredients so much better than products with chemicals.

Joanna-Vargas-FavoritesWhat are your top five must-haves and why? 

Well, sunscreen is key for all women, all skin types, all skin tones. I love Eminence Organics mineral powder sunscreen SPF 30 in translucent. It is great because you can wear it with or without makeup, and it really helps protect the skin against sun damage and hyper pigmentation.

I always carry a packet of Dr. Frank Lipmans Recharge Shake because it contains a ton of amazing greens for the skin. If I don't have time to order a juice or if I'm just running around all day it's a great pick me up and a great way to keep on my program.

Bite Beauty makes an awesome lip primer. They are an organic company (of course) and the primer is great at erasing the dry lip line before you put on your lip color.

My own Rejuvenating Serum is something I keep in tow because if I'm feeling tired or like my skin is starting to reflect low energy I put a little on my cheeks and eyes- instant glow again from the neroli oil, which stimulates the circulation in the skin.

A hat! It's a non-negotiable for anyone who cares about their skin. Goorin Bros is my favorite of late- I have a beautiful collection!


Have you discovered any new products lately that you find impressive? 

I love African Botanicals Marula Oil for body- it smells incredible and it feels so good on the skin. I love it as a cure for dry winter skin!

Spill your best beauty advice.

Beauty is about what makes us unique and we should be trying to achieve uniformity. The reason I use non-invasive treatments in my salon is that I truly believe it's the right path to real beauty. And every woman I know will tell you that real beauty comes from how we feel about ourselves, not from what people tell us. My focus has been and will always remain on restoring confidence! But I preach to people every day: there is no magic solution- anyone can achieve the skin they want by doing the steps every day.

What’s the one tip or trick that you think all women should know?

Chamomile and green teas are not only great for you internally, but they are awesome for bathing or rinsing the skin in. If the skin feels stressed, dry and dull, putting them in your bath water or simply washing your face in the tea water will immediately calm the skin and brighten it. It's a great tip before you go to sleep!

Want to keep up with Joanna?  Follow her on Twitter.  You can also make an appointment with  Joanna Vargas at her 5th Ave. salon in NYC or try her skincare.

10 Minutes with Drew Barrymore

BeautySweetSpot contributor, Emily Rekstis and Drew Barrymore.

We had the pleasure of catching up with one of the most humble, intelligent and coolest woman around, Drew Barrymore. Celebrating her new fragrances over cocktails, when talking with her, you would never know you’re talking to an A-list celebrity who the world, has well known since she was seven. Following an awkward exchange of her asking if we met before, and me replying, “I don’t think so,” (of course we haven’t! I think I’d have remembered if I had met Drew Barrymore), we chatted about her perfect New York day, nostalgic scent and her must-have product.

Is there any scent that reveals a certain memory or emotion?

Yes, Night Blooming Jasmine. Over the course of hour after hour, you smell things and it is the most emotional amazing thing. You can smell something and your just like ‘oh I hate it,’ or you smell something and you burst into tears and it brings back a childhood memory. It seems like something that’s so lost and gone but then it’s as if it’s right there in front of you. And there was a Night Blooming Jasmine outside of our dingy duplex out in West Hollywood. But [when I smelled it] it was this moment of such beauty and nature it let me know there was good things in the world.

Do you remember your very first scent?

I have been patchouli girl my whole life. Like I am dirty hippie oil patchouli type. It was interesting to me to learn that so much patchouli is in so many of the most successful scents in the world. It’s a very common accord in the highest selling perfumes. I only like things that aren’t going to sell like old lady rose or hippie patchouli. I was told that patchouli was a great seller.  Then I tested all these patchoulis and I fell in love with one and he was like it’s the most expensive. And I was like well we can get it? He walk like, ok, we’ll get it. So that’s in sultry.

How does a woman go about finding her signature scent?

I would say it’s important to be honest with yourself. Don’t wear something because you think you’re supposed to be wearing it. But wear something that smells really truly good to you. And then don’t spray too much on.

I would also start with figuring out what your favorite flower is, and finding a fragrance that’s representative of that flower.

What’s one beauty product you’re never without?

Without missing a beat: Aquaphor I get nervous when I don’t have my Aquaphor on me. I feel like my lips are just going to shrivel and go away forever. In a burning fire if I don’t have my Aqua 4.

 How would you spend your perfect NY day?

I would definitely go to a museum and there’s just so many, but definitely a museum a great museum. I would eat like a pastrami sandwich. I would go shopping somewhere in the like East Village at a boutique where I would never be able to get that stuff anywhere else. I would eat Chinese food. Although I did just get food poisoning from ordering Chinese. If you can get shrimp that fast, you just shouldn’t eat it. I really paid the price and learned the lesson. But I would still eat a lot of Chinese food. And then I would take a walk after dinner because you can here.

drew-barrymore-flower-fragranceThe three scents: Cherish, Radiant, and Sultry are available for $19.98 for 15 ml to $24.98 for 30ml at Walmart or on the FLOWER site.

An Exclusive Interview with Lucy Hale

lucy-hale-jeannine-morrisBefore attending the Country Music Awards last week, I had the opportunity to hang out with Lucy Hale thanks to Colgate Optic White, who was presenting.  Of course, using some of the questions you sent through on Twitter, I interviewed Lucy about her acting and singing career, beauty secrets love for country music.  The 5'2" starlette (and I know because we had a height competition, you know, back to back) may be tiny, but she sure is fierce.  At just 25, she's not only accomplished, but knows exactly who she is and what she's doing.

lucy-haleOn her fans: My fans are very passionate.  I got into my career, because I love what I do, but to have that support system makes it all even better.

On her new shorter 'do: I cut it this morning.  I needed something new.  I chopped three inches and we're still filming the show, but they can add extensions if they have to.  I feel more grown up with it.

On her new album: With a first album you can do whatever you want and as an artist I'm constantly learning and growing and finding out how I sound better and what I don't like.  I loved that we used a lot of traditional country music instruments like mandolin, fiddle and banjo and steel guitar.  I love those sounds, but they have a mainstream vibe. There's no rules, so we were able to do whatever we wanted.  One of my favorite songs on the album is "Nervous Girl," because it's very strict and raw so maybe we'll see more of that on album two.

On her singing career: I hope to make music for the rest of my life, but I want each album to feel very different.  I'm a very different person from when I started so it will be interesting to see where we go.  I love all music and explore, but country is where my heart's at.

On the artist/actress debate: I get asked this question more than anything: acting or singing.  I'm not one to live in a box or be told what to do and I want to be the exception.  A lot of people have a mindset that they can only accept me as one or the other.  I've wanted to sing before I wanted to act, but I'll never choose.  I love acting and I love music and I've been lucky enough to do both and hope to continue to have respect in both worlds.

On her influences: Dolly Parton, Miranda Lambert, Martina McBride, Faith Hill, Shania Twain.  Mostly late '90's women in country.  Rascall Flatts is what really made me fall in love with music.  They were the first country act I found to be mainstream and I remember hearing "Praying for Daylight" for the first time on the radio and was blown away.

On her beauty secrets:  Besides a good hair and makeup team, eye patches help (she likes Skyn Iceland Hydro Cool Firming Eye Gels) and the obvious, sleep and water.

On her Colgate partnership: I'm 25 now and think I'm the person I'm going to be.  I can finally say I'm comfortable with who I am and when Colgate Optic White approached me about the 'Red Carpet Ready' campaign, it just made sense.  It's all about confidence and what I do to get ready for a big event.

On what's in her bag: Kind bars, phone charger, Ray Bans, hand sanitizer, Aquaphor lip balm, Mark cosmetics, makeup remover, my laptop, my broken iPhone 6 that I dropped before my flight yesterday, Justins peanut butter packets

On her favorite place in TN: Home with my family in Memphis.  I wish I could plop their house next to me in LA.

On her pre-performance rituals: Before I go on stage I need about 15 minutes to myself with no distractions and I say a prayer.  And try not to throw up, because I still get nervous, but it's good.  Once the nerves and butterflies go away, I feel like I need to get a new profession.

On the best beauty advice she ever got: My mom instilled to always wash my face no matter how tired I am.  I don't always listen, since I keep makeup removers by my bed incase it was a long day, but you only get one face, so you have to take care of it.

3 Questions with Cara Delevingne

Cara-Delevingne-InterviewYour ultimate girl crush is much cooler than you think she is.  I knew I was interviewing Cara Delevingne yesterday so naturally, I prepared my questions, but when I arrived at Sephora in the Meatpacking District to celebrate her new Burberry campaign, I was barely prepared.  Immediately I grabbed a makeup artist and asked her to fill in my brows.  Thank God, because a photo was taken.  Here, she spills her beauty must haves, behind the scenes info on her new campaign and the one super power she wishes her famous brows had.

 Cara-Delevingne-Interview1. How was shooting with Kate Moss?  Tell me about the Burberry campaign.

Kate and I have wanted to work together for a while and I still can't believe that it actually happened.  We didn't actually smell the scent before shooting, since it was top secret, but we did on the day of shooting and it's amazing.  We were relieved that it was wicked.  We had so much fun hanging out.  They were trying to get us to stop chatting and concentrate most of the time (on set).

2. What are your ultimate beauty must-haves?

The new Burberry Effortless Eyebrow Definer Stick that I just discovered recently and rose water spray for my face that I use when I travel and always, really.  It's a great refresher and makes me happy.


3. If you could give your brows one super power what would it be and why?

I wish more than anything that I was Medusa and my eyebrows could move.  I would want them to grow some nerves so I can move them.

The new scent, My Burberry, is a floral fragrance that has top notes of sweet pea and bergamot fuse with a heart of geranium, golden quince and freesia, rounded out with base notes of rain-tipped damask and centifolia roses and patchouli.

Interview: Michael B. Jordan

Michael+B+Jordan+AXE+Gold+Temptation+Product+Gw8_zKrDfSrlYou guys may know him from Friday Night Lights or The Wire, but I became familiar with Michael B. Jordan, because of his explosive Twitter account.  As AXE's latest muse, I had the chance to chat with the actor about his partnership,  his biggest temptations and of course, what type of scents he likes on women.  Check out what he has to say.

What made you want to partner with AXE?

This particular campaign was interesting to me. According to an AXE survey, 75 percent of guys and 60 percent of girls don’t know what tempts each other. I could relate to this topic and wanted to help be part of the solution in a cool, creative way. Not only does this allow me to help solve answers in the modern world of dating, but AXE is allowing me to step behind the cameras and direct some of the content.

Besides AXE, do you have a favorite fragrance, a cologne?

I like fragrances that are fresh and sophisticated – like the citrus and cedarwood combination in Gold Temptation.

Does your fragrance choice change with the character you're playing? 

I do a lot of preparation to get into my characters. I think there’s a strong correlation between fragrance and how it makes you feel. Pairing a fragrance with a specific character is one way to help get into character.

Is there a particular scent that you like on a woman?

I like floral, sweet scents that are subtle – and keep you coming back for more. Like how AXE Gold Temptation has notes of chocolate with citrus and spice.

You host AXE's #TemptationTuesday on Twitter. What are your biggest temptations?

It’s been fun hearing about what guys and girls find tempting – you’d be surprised.  There’s always something you just can’t resist. Staying healthy is huge for me, but if bacon’s an option, I’m adding it. And if I walk past sneakers, I’m walking out with them.


Exclusive Interview with Ballerina, Misty Copeland

mistycopeland2.jpg“Thank you for your application to our ballet company. Unfortunately, you will not be accepted.  You lack the right feet, achilles tendons, turn out, torso length, and bust.  You have the wrong body for ballet. And at 13, you are too old to be considered.”

Misty Copeland, the woman in the new Under Armour 'I Will What I Want' ad, told me was a list of reasons why she would never succeed as a ballerina.  Today, well look at her.  I was fortunate enough to sit down one-on-one with the first African-American soloist in two decades for the American Theater Ballet Company.  Here's what she had to say...

mistycopelandWhat is it that drew you to ballet?

I was literally pushed into it. I didn’t know anything about [ballet]. So there was no drive or real focal point really. I took my first ballet class at a boys and girls club on a basketball court and I was pushed into taking it. I took it at the late age of 13 and then to achieve being a member of one of the most prestigious ballet companies in the world in only four years of training I think just says something about the determination that was so innate that just speaks to the I Will What I Want campaign.

What is it that you love most about ballet?

It’s athletic, artistic, I think it’s an art and a sport. I think we need to come up with a new word for that. We’re more than just an athlete and more than just an artist. And what it takes to be the whole package and be all these things and these very elite small percentage of people that makes it to these top companies it takes a ton of perseverance and determination and dedication.

If you weren’t doing ballet, what is it you think you would doing with your life/career?

I would be athletic. I’d be Fashion. I don’t know. I would be doing something that got me moving. I think that’s what I was meant to do. From the time I was like seven, I had like massive calf muscles and thighs even though I did nothing physical. So I think I was meant to do something physical.

Did you ever play other sports?

I played basketball for fun with my brothers when I was growing up. There was three boys in my family. But I never played in leagues or anything that was structured. I’m really drawn to basketball. I can’t wait to meet Steph Curry who’s now also Under Armour athlete, who plays for the Golden State Warriors. Hopefully I get a one-on-one with him.

What’s your guiltiest pleasure?

Oooh shoes. When it comes to food though? Cupcakes.

What’s your favorite pair of shoes?

Right now I have a pair of Saint Laurent's that are like hot pink platform. But that’s not my typical. Like I have so many Christian Louboutins. The very classic ones simple nude, black, pointy toe.

Misty Copeland was phenomenal in person and such an inspiration.  Check out her video and I promise you'll be inspired, too.


73 Questions with Sarah Jessica Parker

In case you haven't seen this yet, Vogue posted a no-BS video interview with Sarah Jessica Parker where she answers 73 questions in rapid fire style.  Turns out, we share a love for the NYC restaurant Gradisca, kittens, strong coffee and blowouts.  Do you have anything in common with Miss Carrie Bradshaw?

Valentine's Day Advice from Victoria's Secret Angels

Have you started thinking about Valentine's Day yet?  It's Friday!  Don't stress, I caught up with two of the sexiest women on Earth, Victoria's Secret AngelsCandice Swanepoel and Karlie Kloss, during their Bombshell Day celebration.  They're advice?  Keep Valentine's Day simple.  Here are their recommendations for date night along with must-haves for making it a complete success.

Candice suggests spicing it up!

“I’ve been in a relationship now for a really long time, it’s [Valentine’s Day] a great excuse to do something different… naughty or spontaneous!”

The way to her heart:

“I love having flowers in my house at all times, the best gift I could receive is loads of flowers!”

Karlie suggests keeping it low key.

“I like a nice night at home with my loved one and a nice home cooked meal. I love a fire, especially this time of year with all the snow, and spending a night in.”

The way to her heart:

“I have a sweet tooth and I love dark chocolate. There’s a local New York store called Mast Brothers Chocolate, and they make a really good dark chocolate with sea salt and caramel that is heaven.”

Flowers and chocolate are sweet and traditional and I respect how they keep it simple and low key.  The cherry on top, of course is lingerie!  Surprise your man with Victoria’s Secret's new collection for Bombshell Day. It's categorized into: Sexy, Flirty, or Romantic.  Don't be shy! Victoria's Secret is also launching their newest fragrance, Forbidden, which includes notes of exotic pear, jasmine, blackberry and amber wood. 

Emmy Rossum, As Real As It Gets

Out of all of the celebs I get to meet and interview for BeautySweetSpot, Emmy Rossum was one of my favorite.  She called last Friday for a scheduled interview and I don't know about her, but I could have talked to her for hours (and I'm not a phone person).  She's hysterical and so real.  I'm intrigued by the way she uses fragrance, believe we should be BFF because we like the same beauty products and know you'll love her Jake Gyllenhaal story. Enjoy the interview!

What was your favorite part of the Elle Women in TV event?

It was sponsored by Hearts on Fire jewelry and the flower arrangements in the middle of the table had jewelry draped from them.  Being the diamond obsessed girl that I am, I started draping myself in it.  I sat with Joe Zee and Emma Roberts, who  also found it fun so we wondered if anyone notice if we left with draped in diamonds.  Turns out, some of the jewelry did go missing!  Imagine? Party favors for all sponsored by Hearts on Fire!

What are your absolute favorite beauty products and why?  

I love the whole Restorsea line, because the technology is really good.  It eats away at the dead skin on top with out harming other layers of my skin.  Their eye cream is always in carry on when I travel since I'm always dehydrated.  I also use the Clarisonic after I remove my makeup to clean out my pores and right now for my hair I'm loving the Oribe Dry Texturizing Spray.  It can turn any hair day into a va-va-voom hair day. I wear a vanilla perfume from Italy that's sold at Barneys regularly.  (This is it - Profumi Di Firenze Vaniglia Del Madagascar.)

Would you say vanilla is your signature scent?

It is now.  I used to wear Viktor and Wolf Flowerbomb until I realized that every guy’s mom and sister wore it too.  You never want to smell like someone's mom.  I’m a very smell conscious person and change the scent that I wear with every character that I play, because it affects my mood and how people respond to me.  

What scent do you wear when you play Fiona on Shameless and why?

When I play Fiona on Scandal I wear patchouli oil, because it makes me feel like her, more earthy, like a girl who showers every other day.  She doesn't smell bad, but she certainly doesn't smell glamorous.   If I were playing a chic character, I'd wear Miss Dior Cherie.

You recently Instagramed a pic of yourself getting a facial and compared it to "a Hannibal Lector costume."  What kind of facial was that?  

I get it all the time at Face Place in LA.  I love it there, because they don’t have a huge spa menu where you can’t figure out what the treatment does and they're all a bizzilion dollars.  They only offer one facial and really specialize in keep you skin clean with extractions, but they do this mask before the extractions that makes them come out painlessly.  In that pic there are also red wires, which give off an electrical pulse to stimulate blood flow.

How do your LA beauty must haves differ from your NYC must haves?

In NY, I go for a red lip and strong brow with lots of nudes.  I feel more encouraged to do fun nail art.  It feels chicer.  In LA, I'm much more casual with softer, beachier hair and a more apricot color palette.

Which look do you prefer?

NY always feels more natural to me, because I’m from here, but I can def embrace the more relaxed “be yourself” attitude LA has to offer.  However, I wont go anywhere wearing a track suit!

What was your most embarrassing beauty moment?

The day before I began filming my first big movie, The Day After Tomorrow, I got a huge pimple right between eyebrows and didn’t practice what I preach, which is don't pick.  Of course I took a needle out of sewing kit and was left with a huge scab on my face.   Jake Gyllenhaal called me third eye.  It was red, puffy, bruised and scabbed!  Ironically, that scene in the movie was cut, but I don't think it's because of my pimple.  Now, I never ever pick pimples.

The Trick to Achieving Award Winning Brows

Out of all of the glitz and glamour of red carpet season, I can't help but obsess over people's brows!  As Twitter was raving over Sarah Hyland's Valentino inspired braided updo at the Globes, I couldn't control my brow envy.  I mean, look at them.  I turned to my brow artist, Maribeth Madron, to find out how to properly fill in your brows.  

Whenever I leave Maribeth's chair my brows look like this, but filling them in at home was always a challenge until I learned how.

"Full, bold brows requires a fair amount of product, and you need actual hair to make the product look natural," Madron says.  "A lot of product on bare skin will look too artificial." Therefore, put down the tweezers and if you need help growing them in, try using Revita Brow.  It contains wheat protein and biotin, which help to thicken the hairs you already have and promote new growth.

To fill them in, Madron suggests using a sharpened wax-based pencil like Maybelline EyeStudio Master Shape Pencil and then setting it with a brow powder.  For hold and a youthful sheen, take the extra step to go over them with a clear mascara.

"Always begin in the center of the brow to prevent you from overdoing the anchor at inner corner of eye," explains Madron.  When using the pencil, brush your brows up and fill in any gaps with short upward strokes. They should be fine "to mimic the look of actual hairs."

Connie Britton's Skin & Hair Secrets Revealed

Chances are if you're reading this you're either 1. a Nashville fan or 2. hoping that I found out the secret behind Connie Britton's amazing hair.  I'm excited to say, you'll both be happy so keep reading.  Back in November the actress and I co-hosted a Twitter chat for Ponds and she was just as gorgeous in person as she is on TV.  And yes, her hair is real!  Here, she spills exactly what she does to her hair and her beauty must haves.

What drew you to partnering with Ponds Luminous Finish BB+?

I love the duality of it – short and long-term benefits in one product is a huge draw.

You mentioned using Wen Leave in Conditioner, but what's the real secret behind your famous hair?  

The truth is, I don’t do much to it at all – I wash it pretty infrequently, and I’m pretty low maintenance with it. I find over washing my hair tends to dry it out too much. I also air dry it.

What's the number one hair or makeup tip you've learned on set?

Less is more! We pile on so many products when we’re in front of the camera, I’ve learned what not to do off camera. I’m a big believer in keeping it basic in my own time, and using only a couple of products that really do all the work for me.

What are your five beauty must haves?

Leave in conditioner, a dry shampoo, volumizing mascara, Ponds Luminous Finish BB+ and I know this isn’t a beauty product, but hydrating is a huge step in my beauty regimen.

What would your character, Rayna Jaymes's, five beauty must haves be?

Rayna keeps it pretty simple as well, which I love. But since she performs on stage, she definitely ups the makeup a bit. A nude lip gloss, darker eyeliner, mascara, and sometimes even some gold eye shadow to spice things up!

The 411 on Laser Tattoo Removal

Since my post on Identity Regret, I've gotten a lot of questions on tattoo removal in general so I reached out to Dr. Jeremy Brauer to find out more about the process and everything else you need to know about getting a tattoo removed.  The advancements in laser technology amaze me and yes, you really can get rid of a whole tattoo.

According to the American Society of Dermatologic Surgery, over 63,000 tattoo removal procedures were done in 2012 alone and since 1 in 5 American's have at least one tattoo, the number will begin to climb.  

How do lasers get rid of permanent ink?

Laser tattoo removal is based on the theory of selective photothermolysis, in which the individual ink particles preferentially absorb the particular wavelength of light that is emitted by the laser.  A photothermal reaction results, meaning the particle heats up and ultimately shatters.  With the newest tattoo removal laser, the PicoSure, pulses of energy are delivered to the ink in a matter of picoseconds, allowing for a second effect, known as a photomechanical, or photoacoustic, effect where the ink particles literally fracture into tiny particles.  The resulting broken down particles (by either method) are then eliminated by the body’s lymphatic system.

How safe is it for your body to absorb the fragments since tattoo ink isn't regulated?

This is a great point - and one few think about before, during or even after getting a tattoo.  We really do not know what is injected into your skin.  The FDA is charged with regulating the ink and pigments, but by their own admission, this has not traditionally been done.  You can go to the same parlor on the same day, ask for the same tattoo in the same colors and could possibly have different particles injected.  The most commonly reported side effects of tattoos are allergic reactions and scarring, but the process of getting the tattoo also carries the risk, however rare, of transmission of infections such as HIV and Hepatitis C.

What colors are the hardest to remove and why?

Until recently, blues and greens were amongst the most difficult colors to remove, requiring as many as 20 treatments to achieve considerable clearance.  Fortunately, those colors have now become amongst the easiest to treat using the novel picosecond 755nm PicoSure laser.  Now I’d say it would be the white and skin tone pigments, because of a phenomenon known as paradoxical darkening, in which those colors turn the tattoo a dark gray instead of improving. 

Is it really possible to fully remove a complete tattoo?  

Yes.  It is important to establish realistic expectations when discussing tattoo removal.  The skin has been altered in the area that the tattoo was placed, and where it will be treated by laser.  When we discuss “complete” clearance,  sometimes a “shadow” may still be evident in the area.   A better way to think of it is that at a quick glance one may not notice a tattoo was once present, but if you look closely enough one may be able to tell that something was previously present.

 What should one expect when going in for treatment?

In general, in our practice, a photograph is taken at the first visit and every visit thereafter before treatment.  The area is then anesthetized with local administration of lidocaine and epinephrine, unless otherwise contraindicated.  From this point forward the session should be pain free.  The laser treatment is then performed, usually in a matter of minutes, followed by application of Aquaphor healing ointment and a bandage.

After a laser session, what should a patient expect from the treated area?

Immediately after the tattoo is treated there will be a whitening effect  that typically fades after about twenty minutes.  The area may be red and swollen, and possibly bruised.  This area may also blister and crust over before healing.  During this time Aquaphor should be applied and covered with a bandage.

How long should they wait between sessions and why?

Session frequency is dependent upon several factors.  Most importantly is the patient, and their experience after a treatment.  The individual’s skin tone as well as how the tattoo looks after each treatment, and whether they experienced any side effects can influence how often we choose to treat.  At a minimum tattoos are typically treated no sooner than four weeks apart, but can be treated as infrequently as every eight weeks or more, depending also on the patient’s schedule.

Are there side effects to tattoo removal?

When discussing the risks of the procedure, it is important that one understands the risk of scarring, increasing and decreasing the pigment both of the skin containing the tattoo as well as the skin immediately adjacent to the area to be treated.

How are different skin tones affected by the laser?  Does it work on everyone?

These lasers have developed to preferentially target pigment, say instead of blood vessels.  This includes pigment from tattoos as well as naturally occurring pigment, and is the reason why a potential side effect is disruption of the normal pigment in the skin.  The greater the contrast between the tattoo and surrounding skin, usually the lower the risk.  Lasers can work on individuals of all skin types, but it is extremely important that the right device as well as parameters are selected and technique performed.

How is PicoSure different from other tattoo removal lasers?

The biggest difference between the PicoSure and other lasers is the pulse duration, or the amount of time the laser is emitted and able to be absorbed by the target – the tattoo particles.  It is though that this particular pulse duration allows for destruction of the ink particles in a novel fashion, by fracturing them into even tinier fragments, making for easier absorption and elimination by the body.  Additionally a shorter pulse duration means that there is less time for the surrounding, uninvolved skin to be damaged by energy that might escape beyond its intended target.