The Hot New BB Cream? A CC Cream!

The hot new BB Cream is a CC Cream!

Beauty Balms (aka BB Creams) have enjoyed their time in the spotlight thanks to multiple benefits of an all-in-one moisturizer, primer, sun protection and a light foundation. Color Correctors (aka CC Creams) are the latest take on this craze. Similar to the BB Cream they do all of the above but also address specific complexion concerns like dullness or discoloration while adding a bit more coverage. Both are lighter than your traditional foundation.

Your skin type, desired coverage and even the weather (dry vs. humid conditions) will all influence your preference.

BB & CC Beauty Tips:

  • Apply sunscreen before your BB or CC Cream to ensure you’re getting adequate sun protection.
  • Blend with your usual foundation when looking for more coverage.
  • If skin is oily, use it as a primer to help set your makeup. If skin is dry, mix in a little moisturizer for extra hydration.

To Try:

Smashbox Camera Ready CC Cream Broad Spectrum SPF30 , $42 at

Ole Henrikson Perfect Truth CC Creme Broad Spectrum SPF30, $36, available at

Urban Decay Naked Skin Beauty Balm Broad Spectrum SPF20, $34, available at


Sole Searching…

I’ve done a bit of sole searching…for the perfect flat that is, and I think I’ve finally found it in Tieks by Gavrieli.

I’ve always loved the look of ballet flats, but have never found one with enough arch support and a comfort level that makes me want to wear them all day. Until now. Tieks by Gavrieli are made of fine Italian  leather, available in a slew of colors and patterns, have a non-skid blue rubber sole and are even designed to fold and fit in a purse. They’re not inexpensive, but sometimes you really do get what you pay for.

Here, the reasons they’re worth it:

  • Cushioned back so the heel never chafes.
  • Foldable, compact and lightweight so on your feet or in your purse they won’t weigh you down.
  • They’ll stretch and mold to your feet becoming so comfortable you won’t want to take them off!

Tieks by Gavrieli, prices start at $165, available at

(photo by Tieks by Gavrieli)

Nancy Answers: Can I mix and match different brands of skincare?

Dear Nancy, I know most skin care companies want you to use their whole line of products, but is it okay to mix and match from different lines instead?  Sincerely, G

Dear G, When I first started in the beauty business I was so excited to be surrounded by so many great products I was like a kid in a candy store. I was cocktail-ing with the best of them…and my skin paid the price for it! “The short answer though, is yes, it can be safe to mix and match different brands of skincare,” according to Dr. Komal Pandya, a board certified general and cosmetic dermatologist with The Dermatologist Group in Paramus and Nutley, NJ. But, before doing so, you should “consult with a licensed esthetician or board-certified dermatologist to avoid adverse reactions from active ingredients and determine a skincare regimen that will give you the results you desire.”

Certain active ingredients and different pH levels can cancel each other out or cause irritation if improperly combined. Also, keep in mind that some products work best when used daily, once or twice a week or only at night. Pandya says “choosing one brand of skincare certainly makes it easier to piece all of the products together, and some lines are formulated to work synergistically as a set, but with a little bit of homework – and the guidance of a professional (not the salespeople behind the counters who have a vested interest in the line) – you can certainly stick to your favorites and add in some powerful new products from other companies.”

*BONUS: Mention THE BEAUTY WALL at any DermPerfection Skin Care Center in NJ (Nutley, Verona, West Orange, Morristown) and receive $25 off your first purchase of $75 and over.  No appointment needed, but please call 973-571-2121 for locations and hours.


Swimming Swimming…5 Easy Ways to Protect Your Hair

There’s nothing like jumping into a swimming pool to cool off…but, what’s great for the body can prove hazardous to your hair! Most swimming pools use chlorine, a harsh chemical used to break down bacteria and oils and keep pool water clear. Unfortunately, it also strips oil and moisture from your hair making it extremely dry and damaged and can even cause lighter hair to take on a greenish tone.

Though everyone should protect their hair, those with color treated, chemically processed, thin, fine or dry hair need to be especially cautious. Here easy ways to keep your hair healthy:

  1. Wear a swimming cap. Obviously, if the water can’t get to your hair, it can’t be damaged.
  2. Pull hair up on top of your head to keep it from getting wet and don’t submerge.
  3. Rinse your hair with clean water before entering the pool. Your hair is porous like a sponge. By getting its fill of fresh water, it’s less likely to absorb the chlorinated pool water.
  4. Shampoo, Rinse, Repeat. As soon as you step out of the pool shampoo your hair. If you can’t wash it immediately, rinse well to remove most of the chlorine and stop the damage asap. Clarifying and chlorine-removing shampoos are recommended but they shouldn’t be used too often as they can be drying as well. Click here for some shampoo and conditioner suggestions.
  5. Replace lost moisture with conditioners. Condition after shampooing but also use leave-in conditioners daily and deep conditioning treatments bi-weekly to keep hair healthy and shiny.

(photo courtesy of


Memorial Day Thoughts…

Memorial Day means different things to different people. Tradition has embraced it as the unofficial first day of summer, time to throw a barbecue, attend a picnic or shop the sales. But, it’s so much more than that! It’s a day to honor and remember America’s fallen heroes, a day to celebrate the freedom they gave their lives to protect, a day to be thankful.

I look forward to this day every year. Like many towns across the nation, mine holds a parade followed by a beautiful outdoor gathering that is meaningful to all that attend. Speeches are given, servicemen are honored, students read poems, pastors give blessings. Young children wave flags and run toward butterflies, away from bees. My favorite part of the service is when the local high school marching band plays the corps’ medleys and every veteran and serviceman is invited to walk up to the stage and receive a special coin. Young and old alike make their way–some with babies on their shoulders and others with assistance or canes in their hands. It’s a beautiful sight. When my eyes fill I look around at the sea of red, white and blue…I’m certainly not alone as I see many others in the crowd wiping away tears, too.

Today, when you’re out with your friends or celebrating with your families, take a moment and give thanks for all who were willing to sacrifice their lives so that you could enjoy those freedoms. God bless America…God bless the World!


Twinkle Toes!

Though my manis tend to be neutral…I have an “anything goes” attitude when it comes to my toes!

Take a walk on the wild side in summer’s hottest hues! Go bright…and if you’re feeling extra bold, top with a kalaidescope of colorful glitter.

Layer your brights over pure white so your color will really pop. Essie Blanc is perfect for this beauty trick, but my favorite way to wear Blanc is with Pure Ice Sexy Mama on top!

From left to right:

  1. Neon Green: Essie Shake Your $$Maker
  2. Electric Fuchsia: Essie Bottle Service
  3. Bright Blue Hue: Pure Ice French Kiss
  4. Multi-colored Sparkles: Pure Ice Sexy Mama


Pony Up!

A ponytail as beautiful as this isn’t as simple as just pulling your hair back and hoping for the best, it actually takes some effort. No matter what your hair type, the right products and a step-by-step will have you looking just as polished.

This look was created by Aveda Global Creative Director, Antoinette Beenders, for the Stella McCartney Fall/Winter 2013 Collection in Tokyo, Japan. I don’t know about you, but I’m not waiting for fall–I plan on sporting it all throughout the summer!

Aveda’s Damage Remedy Hair Repair, Smooth Infusion Style Prep and Air Control are available at

(photography and how-to courtesy of Aveda)

White Out: 5 Perfect Pieces

Everyone wears white after Memorial Day…5 perfect pieces to get you through the summer in style!

  1. a white tee, linen tee, $19.90 at
  2. white jeans, matchstick jean in white denim, $115 at
  3. white shorts or skirt, vince tropical stretch tennis shorts, $195 at
  4. a white top, wendy poplin shirt, $139.50, at
  5. a white dress, blanca jacquard dress, $148 at

And the accessories to keep it cool:

  • Pair with a neutral or black shoe.
  • Add a bright bag.
  • Gold jewelry always looks chic.
  • Black sunnies keep white from looking too precious.


(photography courtesy of Pinterest)

Nancy Answers: Help for Fragrance Fade-Out

Dear Nancy, I love wearing perfume but it disappears too soon after I apply it. How can I make it last a lot longer? Sincerely, M

Dear M, If your skin is on the dry end of the spectrum it’s nearly impossible to make it last without a bit of layering. To keep it from evaporating quickly, the fragrance needs something to adhere to. Use an unscented body lotion or jojoba oil to moisturize your skin (particularly in the areas you’ll be scenting), before spritzing on your favorite perfume. That should do the trick! Nancy

The End of Frizz!

Product Review: Arrojo Defrizz Serum, $16 at

Last night, my in-laws (and 80 of their closest friends) celebrated their 50th Wedding Anniversary at Shanghai Jazz, a gourmet Asian restaurant/bar named one of the top 100 jazz clubs in the world. The food, music and planned festivities were absolutely perfect. The weather…not so much!

I had been looking forward to this evening for quite a while. I had my outfit picked out well before the invite arrived, a black silk dress paired with a beautiful baroque pearl bracelet, a gift from my mom. I’d planned on wearing my hair down so I wouldn’t look too formal but the rainy, misty, sticky weather had me worried. I normally straighten my wavy hair–some might call it curly–and in high humidity it tends to get big…very, very big!

I decided to take a chance. This was the perfect opportunity to think of my blog and try a de-frizzer–luckily, I have an arsenal of beauty products just waiting to be tested. Front and center on the bottle of Arrojo Defrizz Serum it says “eliminates frizz, controls flyaways and eases excess volume”–just the words I was looking for! But, would it actually work in weather this extreme?

After shampooing and conditioning, I towel-dried my hair and applied 4-5 drops to my palms before working it through every strand. I blow-dried it smooth and loosely braided it for about 10 minutes for some bend at the ends.

The air was thick with mist and drizzle, so I stepped outside with an umbrella to keep my hair from getting wet. So far, so good. My husband drove with the window half open, humidity filling the car. Still it held. In the restaurant the doors were open for good air-flow to accommodate the large crowd. No problem!

The attached photo is me at the end of the evening, after lots of schmoozing and bumping shoulders and dancing. Normally, under these circumtances my hair would have doubled (or tripled!) in volume. Not once did I feel the need to pull it back into a ponytail to tame it. Arrojo Defrizz Serum is a star!

If you have straight, smooth hair that never changes regardless of the weather, you won’t understand…and you won’t need this product. But if your hair tends to increase in size or frizz with any excess moisture in the air, you will find it life-changing!

Arrojo Defrizz Serum, $16 at