What Mario Badescu Skin Care Products Did Martha Stewart Give Oprah?


Sorry Glee and Gossip Girl—this week’s most enthralling television time-slot belonged to two of the most influential media moguls in the world; in the same hour on one stage: Martha Stewart and Oprah Winfrey.

Martha appeared on Oprah earlier this week to speak candidly about her incredible comeback (Stewart served 5 months in prison in 2004 for securities fraud), share some of her favorite crafting tips, and dish out some pretty incredible grilled cheese recipes.  And of all people, Martha would never be one to show up empty-handed to her hostess’ home, right?  So naturally, she brought along a thoughtful custom gift basket with several of her personal favorite products that she thought Oprah would love too.  Of special interest to me however were those Mario Badescu skin care products she gestured towards.  Oprah replied, “Yes.  I love these products!”

I think it’s safe to say we all know about the power of The Oprah Effect.  (Oprah’s Favorite Things, anyone?)  I’m happy to say that I’m a huge fan of several Mario Badescu products myself!  If you’re curious about the specific Mario products that Martha gifted Oprah in her gift basket, say no more… here they are:

Check out my own personal Mario Badescu recommendations:

Image credit for Martha Stewart and Oprah Winfrey photo: Oprah.com

Experience total “extraction satisfaction” from this L.A. based skincare expert


Every skincare expert has their area of expertise.  I’ve received facials from some of the best in the field; some known for their peels or microdermabrasion, and others for the latest in high-tech specialty treatments.  In all honesty, I cannot say I’ve ever been laying on the table of someone so experienced in the art of extractions until I stopped in to see Rita Csizmadia at her Los Angeles-based Rita’s Institute for Beautiful Skin.  Hailing from Hungary, Csizmadia specializes in what I believe is truly an art in itself—perfectly thorough extractions without increased redness and swelling.   Her Eastern European technique is not only meticulous and precise, but virtually painless.

How many times have you spent good money for a facial in the hopes of degunking your complexion, only to have your esthetician apply some cleanser, exfoliate your skin, give your face few squeezes with tissue on her fingers and call it a day?  Rita’s impressive and extensive training allows her to apply both modern and old-world techniques to achieve total extraction satisfaction during a medical grade facial ($170) which didn’t leave my skin irritated or swollen.  Specializing in both acne and anti-aging  treatments, she was Dr. Murad’s (yes–that Murad) head facialist before opening her own medi-spa.  It’s easy to see why Hollywood A-listers and fellow Los Angelenos flock to her to keep their skin in top shape; Rita’s advanced skill level combined with her tranquil setting makes her a valuable asset in a town completely saturated with skincare experts.  Want an incredible medical-grade facial in Los Angeles with REAL extractions?  Book an appointment with Rita Csizmadia now, she’s a real pro.

Rita’s Institute For Beautiful Skin
1260 15th St. Suite 901
Santa Monica, CA 90404
310-394-4120


Carrie Underwood named as the new face of Olay


Last week during a press conference and webcast, global skincare giant Olay unveiled their first ever North American celebrity brand ambassador—Carrie Underwood.  Carrie joins a family of well-loved Olay brand ambassadors from all over the world; actress Thandie Newton in the United Kingdom, actress Maggie Cheung in Greater China, and singer and actress Lucero in Latin America.  Olay is also sponsoring Carrie’s “Play On” tour which begins this month and will run through December.

Over on the brand’s Facebook page, there seems to be some discussion regarding the multi-award winning country artist being a good choice to represent a brand that was once associated with skincare products predominantly for more mature skin.

One Olay fan wrote:

<sigh> Carrie Underwood is a beautiful girl, but she needs Regenerist like I need a hole in my head. Why do you insist on using adolescents to sell me wrinkle cream? There ain’t no product that is going to make me look 18 again. Get real! There is nothing wrong with being middle aged!

Another Olay fan chimed in:

I think they are using a younger person to encourage the younger generation to start taking care of their skin now before its too late. It makes perfect sense to me.. but I do see your point

What do you think?  My take is that Olay has evolved as a brand SO much over the years beyond their classic/iconic products, that it’s not just for one skin-type or age group anymore.  It’s time to let a younger generation in on what was once a big secret; how important it is to take care of your skin at any age!  I don’t think that Olay is suggesting that Carrie will represent products that aren’t appropriate to her age group, in fact—her part in their “Challenge What’s Possible” campaign won’t start until later this year.  The accomplished 27 year-old won season four of American Idol, has five GRAMMY awards under her belt, three CMA’s for best female vocalist, along with several other prestigious awards.  What’s one of Carrie’s Olay staples?  The Olay Daily Facials Cleansing Cloths.

“I am so excited to be associated with a beauty brand that has been trusted by women for more than 50 years,” Carrie said. “As a little girl I remember my mom always using the original Olay Beauty Fluid and encouraging my sisters and I to take care of our skin. I love that Olay has managed to change with the times, yet stay in touch with women of all ages who want affordable skin care products that do what they promise. My music career has been a dream come true and proven to me that the seemingly impossible can be achieved. Olay’s inspiring campaign echoes my beliefs.”

Check out what else is happening in celebrity beauty

What’s on Lady Gaga’s Nails in Vanity Fair?


What’s that gray nail polish on Lady Gaga’s nails on the September cover of Vanity Fair?

Just in case you were wondering, it’s none other than the very hot Waking Up In Vegas from celebrity manicurist Deborah Lippmann!  The popular gray shade is from Lippmann’s spring 2010 collection (you’ll find my review & swatches for Waking Up In Vegas and a few other Lippmann shades here) and can be purchased on lippmanncollection.com and Beauty.com.  Apparently someone’s a huge Gaga fan, along with other celeb-inspired shades–you’ll find a fascinating black fuchsia glitter polish named Bad Romance in her collection.

(image credit: Vanity Fair)

New Products From Garnier


Last week, I took a short drive out to the Garnier Beach House in Malibu to check out some of the newest Garnier goodies.  They’re really coming out with some innovative products lately–and more on that in a second!

Audrina Patridge was hanging out after finishing up a photo shoot, and I had a chance to ask The Hills star about her favorite summer beauty items.  Audrina told me she spends a lot of time in the sun or at the beach, so she likes the protection that the Garnier Fructis Color Shield Instant Color Sealer Lightweight Leave-In adds to her highlighted locks.  (Which are gorgeous in person, BTW!)  I asked her what her favorite summer makeup product was–and like me, Audrina is a fan of NARS bronzer.  Okay, so now we have something in common!

Garnier just launched some new skincare products that I’m testing out from the Moisture Rescue collection (Fresh Cleansing Foam, Lightweight UV Lotion, and Refreshing Gel Cream),  so details on those are coming soon!  But one new product I was completely fascinated by was the Garnier Fructis Sleek & Shine Blow Dry Perfector:

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Came, Saw, & Conquered: Lilith Fair 2010


Degree Women was so awesome for sending me out to the ultimate celebration of women in music–Lilith Fair 2010 in Irvine, CA last Saturday.  We had a blast!  This was my first time at Lilith, so it definitely created some memories.  Festival concerts have always been my favorite, but the girl-power line-up was fantastic.  We took in main-stage performances by Brandi Carlile (LOVE HER), Emmylou Harris (still rocking after all these years), Miranda Lambert (ADORABLE), and of course–Sarah McLachlan (there are no words!).

Inside the Degree Women Nature Effects tent, I had a chance to hang out with Cindy from Hello Dollface, the always lovely Nadine Jolie, Jamie from Queen of the Quarter Life Crisis, and The Bender Sisters from BeautyStyleWatch.

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Carrie Bradshaw’s Must-Have Beauty Products


How does Carrie Bradshaw always look so fabulous?  As Sarah Jessica Parker’s personal makeup artist, Judy Chin is responsible for creating her iconic looks.  In this short video, Judy dishes on a few of the essential beauty products that no scene with Carrie could be without!

For starters, did you know they usually only like to use a natural colored lip liner for her and top it with lip balm?  For a perfect Carrie-inspired lip, try applying Face Stockholm’s lip pencil in Jessica or Barbro and top with clear lip balm.  Verrrrrrrry interesting!