27 Aug

My Other Life

I feel like I’m always sharing little pieces of my life with you all on this blog, but I realized recently that I’ve never really showed you what I do for a living.  At the beginning of the summer, I decided to stop working as a marketing copywriter so that I could dedicate myself fully to something else I really love… hair and makeup!

I was doing weddings VERY occasionally on the side, and I wasn’t sure I could make a real career out of it.  But the moment I invested in myself and went for it, I had plenty of work!  Want to see some of it?

Weddings are my absolute favorite thing to do— there’s nothing more fun than hanging out with a bride and her family right before she’s headed down the aisle…

And more recently, I’ve been doing hair and makeup for photo shoots, which is a LOT of work, but also incredibly fun.  (I’ll be sharing some of those photos with you soon!)

You can check out “my other life” by visiting www.kimguiley.com or liking my hair & makeup page on Facebook.

Do you have “another life”… something that you do on the side of work?  Ever thought of making it your career?  Are you a fan of any of the wedding looks above?  Share in the comments!

2 Aug

Oily No More: The Nitty Gritty of De-Slicking

Skin is a funny thing, isn’t it? Factors ranging from stress and hormones to the weather and your diet can cause skin to fluctuate from dry to oily to something in-between. Even if you wouldn’t consider yourself “oily,” chances are you get the occasional shiny forehead or nose.

Luckily, there are some quick fixes to help soak up oil on the spot and also combat it long-term, before it even begins. Check out the following for some schooling on de-slicking your face.

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1. The most obvious solution, of course, is blotting papers. Sephora’s new line features five types that target specific skin concerns, including oil control. You can easily throw a pack in your purse and use them as needed. Make sure to blot (not rub), or you risk wiping your makeup clean off!

2. Another purse-worthy solution? Cover FX’s Matte FX Oil Absorbing Powder. This stuff is seriously awesome. It soaks up oil on contact and gives your face a clean, matte finish without removing any makeup. It’s perfect for touch-ups throughout the day and especially on a night out.

3. Despite what people with oilier skin think, it’s actually a bad idea to skip moisturizer. When skin is dehydrated it only produces more oil, creating a vicious cycle. The solution? Try a mattifying moisturizer like Murad’s Oil Control Mattifier. It’s a three-in-one moisturizer that mattifies, minimizes oil, and helps control breakouts with skin-clearing willow bark and replenishing Argan extract.

4. Ladies with excess oil often skip sunscreen because it’s yet another layer of product and can often feel heavy.  But check out Peter Thomas Roth’s Oily Problem Skin Instant Mineral Powder SPF 30. Simply dust this powder on either alone, over moisturizer, or after putting on makeup for a lightweight feel with thorough sun protection. You can carry this in your purse for touch-ups as the day goes on and even use it on your neck and décolleté.

5. Invest in a good toner, which tightens your pores and protects skin from oil-causing dirt and bacteria.  All natural brand, Korres, created a pomegranate-based line that’s perfect for oily skin due to pomegranate’s pore-minimizing, mattifying, and clarifying properties. Try the Pomegranate Toner after cleansing morning and night (but especially at night) – your skin will feel cleaner definitely de-slicked.

Remember, finding your perfect skincare regimen takes time, trial and error, and often mixing and matching products from different brands. Oily skin is a common concern with a huge market of solutions, so take these tips and dive right in to find the combination with the best results!

Do you have any tricks on maintaining an oil-free zone on your face? Please tell your favorite products, tips, and tricks!

26 Jul

Covering Up Doesn’t Have To Be Cakey

When I worked in the makeup industry, the biggest concern I heard from women who wanted new concealer or foundation was, “I don’t want it to look cakey.”

Well, duh! No one wants to have foundation or concealer actually visible on their face— the whole point of these products is to smooth out and even one’s complexion.

Somehow the phrases “full coverage” and “cakey” have become synonymous in the beauty world, but with the right foundation and concealer, you can get full-coverage benefits without a side of cake!

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We all have varying skin concerns and imperfections, and luckily there are actually some foundations and concealers (and even a powder) that provide great coverage without looking like you’re wearing heavy theatre make-up.

Power to the powder

If you’re spending time in the heat or don’t want to use liquid foundation, opt for Cover FX’s Powder FC Mineral Powder Foundation. It’s the most full-coverage powder sold at Sephora, despite it being mineral-based. It works best with a brush like Sephora’s Pro Flawless Airbrush. You’ll find that it covers up imperfections and evens out skin tone pretty well. Use it over a BB cream or tinted moisturizer for a bit of extra coverage or just dab concealer over it where needed and voilá!

Concealing anything and everything

If you need to cover up a stubborn blemish or evidence of a late night, turn to Make Up For Ever’s Full Cover Concealer. It’s waterproof, plus it doubles as an eyeshadow primer. This is heavy duty concealer at its best— without actually feeling heavy.

If you prefer an easy-to-use stick concealer, try Hourglass’ Hidden Corrective Concealer. It’s packed with hydrating vitamin E and blends in extremely well with the skin. You can use this first, then dab on the Make Up For Ever concealer for extra staying power and darkness correction.

Foundation: full on coverage, light on weight

While there are definitely beauty items you can buy on the cheap, foundation is a worthwhile investment. Think about it: this stuff sits on your face all day (and sometimes all night!) and can be the difference between a long-lasting, fresh-faced look and residual patches of leftover foundation after a few hours of wear.

Try Guerlain’s new Invisible Skin Fusion Foundation. True to its word, it’s invisible and silky smooth. It covered up post-acne redness and under eye circles so much that I only needed a hint of concealer.

Another great full coverage formula that feels weightless is Tarte’s Amazonian Clay Full Coverage Foundation. It has up to twelve hours of wear and adjusts to your skin type, either hydrating or minimizing oil.

Bottom line: Good coverage doesn’t equal heavy, so don’t shy away from products labeled “full coverage.”

Do you have any go-to products for concealing imperfections and creating an even complexion? What’s your take on full coverage foundations? Let us know!

19 Jul

What to Do When You Need a Vacation From Your Vacation

Isn’t it ironic that a vacation, while meant to be a relaxing escape from the realities of our lives, can actually leave us feeling exhausted?

Sure, vacations are relaxing because you have a reason to ignore your email, sleep in (or stay up until the wee hours), and to cut yourself some slack on eating healthy. Pasta, bread, and fried calamari?  Sure, why not?

But with prepping and packing for a trip, airplane travel and flight delays, and going from dinner to parties to activities on repeat, our bodies start craving some major downtime and rejuvenation.

This all, of course, depends on your vacation. If you go on a low-key family trip you may actually get some rest. But if, say, you go to Vegas with friends (like I recently did), you’ll have a very different version of relaxation (i.e. little sleep and lots of play) and may really need a vacation from your vacation!

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A couple weeks ago, I showed you some beach savvy beauty looks, and now, here are some ways to take a breather and recoup from lots of fun and sun.

If you’ve been in the sun, sand, and heat (and especially if you’ve been staying up late too), your skin needs some major TLC.

1. Slather on Fresh’s Seaberry Body Cream for serious hydration. Plus, it smells like a luxurious spa treatment (no joke) so you’ll feel swept away, even if only for a few moments, to a tranquil place.

2. For tired, puffy eyes from one too many late nights, use Origins’ No Puffery Cooling Mask for ten minutes underneath your eyes and then rinse off. The cooling sensation will soothe the oh-so-delicate skin beneath your eyes, especially after long days in the sun and/or long nights at the club.

3. To wake yourself up in the morning, spritz on Caudalie’s Beauty Elxir for instant rejuvenation. It’s a mist of essential oils and botanicals that soothes skin, tightens pores, and feels absolutely refreshing. You can even spray it on over your makeup!

Now that you’ve cooled down and hydrated, pamper yourself by exfoliating with a sleep-inducing lavender essential oil scrub, using a thirst-quenching face mask and giving yourself a mani-pedi in a bright color. (I love this neon orange by Zoya.)

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Go a step further by taking a night or day off from your busy life to snuggle up with a good book, catch up with an old friend, and get some long-overdue shuteye. Anything that puts your body in a state of true relaxation will do wonders for your mood and productivity.

Now, sit back and breathe of sigh of restful relief. Your next vacation awaits and you’re (almost) ready to roll again!

What do you like to do to recover from a fun, but tiring vacation? Do you have any favorite after-sun remedies? Do tell!

10 Jul

5 Surprising Things You’re Doing to Mess Up Your Skin!

Hi, beauties! Let’s chat about your number one accessory: your lovely face. Having clear and beautiful skin is hard for some of us.  We all know the common culprits— smoking, forgetting sunscreen, or sleeping with your makeup on are obviously the biggest offenders when it comes to damaging your skin. You may not be aware, though, that there is even more out there trying to sabotage your pores!

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DIRTY MAKEUP BRUSHES: It’s so easy to stop paying attention to the last time you washed a makeup brush. After all, you only use it for a few minutes each day, before you’re even awake. And taking the time to clean your brushes before work just adds time you don’t need to lose. Simply using a gentle shampoo or brush cleaner can save you from blocked pores, acne, and swiping the wrong color across your cheeks!  (Check out Kim’s favorite brush cleaner here.)

A LITTLE LOVE FROM FIDO: I’m guilty of this one. My dog has a big tongue and she loves to give enthusiastic kisses. I’m happy to greet her when I come home, but I became less happy when I noticed how often her love-fests caused me to break out. If your dog decides to show you some love, don’t forget to take the first opportunity to wash your face. Your pores will be clogged with slobber until you do… yuck!

YOUR iPHONE ADDICTION: You may have noticed that when you get off of a long phone call there is a little bit of makeup or oil on your screen.  That’s because the heat from your phone is melting your foundation!  Even if you keep your phone as clean as you can, the germs in your purse or pocket do not belong smeared on your face. If you must make a long phone call, consider using a headset, pressing speakerphone, or washing your face immediately afterward.

LONG HOT SHOWERS: I know. I’m sorry. Everything amazing— dogs, cell phones, and now even hot showers— have their downsides. If you get out of the shower with pinker or itchier skin than you got in with, you may have stripped your outer layer of skin of its natural oils, especially if you use soap. Try a moisturizing body wash, shorter and less steamy showers, or showering with a good-looking buddy and taking turns under the spray!

CHANGE IS GOOD: Years ago, you found the perfect skin care regime, but now your skin isn’t as good as it used to be. Did they change the ingredients in your lovely products? Nope. You may have noticed that a lot of the facial washes and acne treatments out there are aimed at teenagers. Teenage skin has excessive oil, but your acne might be coming from other elements like stress or sensitivity. Updating your products to suit your changing skin can help you achieve that beautiful glow again.

Have you ever experienced bad skin woes? Or have any amazing success stories? Share your skin care dos and don’ts in the comments!