Friday, June 02, 2006

Summer, summer, summer-time (ooh, summertime)

Hola ladies,

Girls, I have had an extremely literary couple of weeks. It seems that everywhere I turn, gorgeous, talented, charismatic ladies are writing fantastic books...and throwing equally entertaining book PARTIES. And as every published author knows, half of the pleasure in turning in your book is planning the soiree...(what do I wear? what do I write? which will read better in pictures, the paris-hilton-over-the-shoulder stance or the halle-berry-butt-first pose?). Ahh yes, I remember THE ACCIDENTAL DIVA party fondly. I was wearing blood-red Viktor & Rolf stilettoes and a fluffy Tracey Feith minidress that I can no longer pull past my thighs. My friend Lyah Beth Leflore, co-author of THE COSMOPOLITAN GIRLS, has fabulous thighs. She also had a fabulous party at The Harlem Tea Room to celebrate her new chick lit tome, LAST NIGHT A DJ SAVED MY LIFE (a totally delicious read, it's about a fancy Manhattan party promoter who falls in love at one of her glittering, celebrity-studded events--so sexy!). The party was teeming with eclectic publishing personalities, including her agent,Marie Brown, aka the Godmommy of the Black Literati (that's her in the photo in-between me and her client-of-the-hour, Lyah). When I was just a wee, terrified suburban twenty-one-year old getting her feet wet as an editorial assistant, clutching my purse to my chest as I walked home from the subway because I lived in "the hood," Marie took me under her wing. Back then, her Soho offices were mecca to a slew of journalists, performance artists, bestselling novelists, book editors, music reporters. We'd hang out there after work, get wasted, and talk, talk, talk. Some of us fell in love, some fought bitterly, and some are best friends to this day. It was like the Paris Cafe Society of the twenties, but with less alcoholics (actually, that's not even true). If any of you are thinking of writing a novel--submit to Marie, she'll take care of you. This woman discovered Terry McMillan, okay?

Across the city, at a sneaky little lounge in Union Square, my mentor and the most legendary magazine editor in the history of mascara, Lucky's beauty director,Jean Godfrey June, was hosting a party for FREE GIFT WITH PURCHASE: MY IMPROBABLE LIFE IN MAGAZINES AND MAKEUP. Now, Jean and I go waaay back. She hired me at Elle to be her beauty assistant, and proceeded to pass on to me all the secrets that made her the most lauded--and most awkwardly imitated--beauty writer in the biz. The most important secret? Lazy, cliche'd beauty writing is for losers! For example, instead of saying something inane, like, "Pucker up with this pout-prettifying rosy gloss," she forced me to be creative, clever, REAL, ie: "This rosy gloss--the exact shade of the crushed rose petals thrown at your bossy cousin's wedding--makes lips look so insanely luscious that Melanie Griffith will instantly demand to know your plastic surgeon's number." See the diff? Basically, anytime you think to yourself, "that Tia, she sure knows her way around a lip liner!" know that you're actually thanking MIss JGJ! She's so major that, four years later, when she asked me to return from my Spanish sabbatical to work with her at Lucky, I dropped my paella to the floor and booked the next ticket. This woman is the ultimate beauty diva, and her memoir about her life at the tippy-top of the industry is a hilarious, insidery, must-read for any and all makeup junkies...especially if you're considering a career in beauty!

Flipping the script dramatically, I've gotta say that I'm DESTROYED to hear that the Bliss Resurfacing Peel was a tad too intense for some of my SYB's. It's all my fault (waaah). It totallly worked for me and my girls, but maybe my skin's not as sensitive? If you're breaking out or getting really dry, STOP using it. Waaah! So bummed. Speaking of bummed, it's time for TIA'S WEEKLY...WHY? My question this week is, why is every grown-ass woman I know (meaning, let's say, twenty-seven-and-up) ridiculously obsessed with silly, teenyboppery shows like "Laguna Beach," "So You Think You Can Dance," and "My Super-Sweet Sixteen?" If anyone knows the answer, please let me know. It's a sickness. We are women with mortgages to pay, several degrees, and in some cases, little bambinas to feed. We should not be counting down the days till "Making The Band: 3" returns. If anyone can explain this phenomenon to mama, please drop me a comment--I think the whole Bliss Peel thing proves that I don't have all the answers :-)

And FINALLY, on to what counts! After some PAIN-STAKINGLY careful editing, I've assembled the most delicous, most urgently spectactular beauty offerings for summer '06!! I get all tingly just thinking about this stuff! Enjoy...



1.) YSL HORIZON PALETTE-FOR THE EYES ($55): Why? Just LOOK at it. Inspired from one of the 2006 Yves Saint Laurent collection fabrics, this relentlessly chic palette combines all the hottest summertime eye shades--bronze, golden-yellow, turquoise and navy--in one vibrant mosaic. The eyeshadows are out-with-the-girls sexy, but I just kind of get a high just whipping out the compact.

2.) CREATIVE NAIL DESIGN POLISH IN TROPINKAL ($5.95): Yesterday, while I was on air doing the "Wake Up With Cosmo" show, I gave myself the most heart-stoppingly summery mani/pedi with this shade. See the vivid, juicy fuschia blob to the left? The polish is just as intense on your nails...and last night at dinner I was stopped three times by girls just wanting a second glance at my almost-flourescent tootsies. Very why-am-I-stuck-in-rainy-Brooklyn-instead-of-San-Tropez.

3.) DIOR SUNSHINE BLUSH IN SUNSET FIESTA ($41): A tad pricy for blush, but sooo necesssary (and, I mean, it's DIOR, dammit!). For an instant sunny flush, swirl your brush over this bronze, watermelon, peach, and pale rosy-gold combo--the orangey shades wake up brown skin, and the gold shimmer gives a sexy, twinkly glow. Quite possibly my favorite new summer staple.

4.) LANCOME STAR BRONZER GLOSSY LIP NECTAR ($18): The best part about this gloss isn't the sparkly, shiny, looks-good-alone-or-over-lipstick's the fact that it's infused with special moisturizing ingredients that repair super-chapped, dry lips. Chic and functional (kind of like those Spanx girdles everyone's wearing).

5.) ELIZABETH ARDEN GREEN TEA HONEY DROPS BODY CREAM ($15): Storytime: The night of the famous Northeastern blackout two summers ago, Elizabeth Arden was hosting an event at the Four Season, where beauty editors were invited to spend the night (plus a guest!). Of course, Adam was my plus-one. And of course, I assumed that the event was canceled due to the blackout, and I set off on a HELLISH, four-hour walk home from midtown Manhattan. Meanwhile, Adam spent a luxurious night at the Four Seasons, pretending to be worried about where I was...but in reality, slathering his body with the Green Tea products stocked in the bathroom (the bastard). Ever since that night, he's been OBSESSED with this body cream, and now I am too. The cool, minty-sweet scent is so clean, so summery, and its blended with drops of real honey to smooth rough skin. If you love it, try the shower gel, bath soak, fragrance, and shampoo, too--so luxe!


Anonymous Fo'Real in Los Angeles said...

Hi Tia, Love the pix and can't wait to read the books. I must admit that the Bliss Peel is working for me and I've had no bad experiences. I guess my skin is pretty tough. Anyhoo, I'm off to Borders, Kiehl's and Sephora today for some major pampering. Thanks for the new summer picks.

12:44 PM  
Blogger Whitney said...

I LUV LUV LUV this post! As an aspiring beauty editor and novelist, you made my day with the details of both industries! Also, I recently read Jean Godfrey-June's book and LUVED it! It was a funny, enlightening read and wildly inspiring to me!


3:23 PM  
Blogger MsTyque said...

Hi Tia, great post! I've been meaning to pick up the JGJ book, I love her Lucky column and now I also must pick up Lyah's book because Cosmpolitan Girls was great! BTW, I had no problems with the Bliss Peel and I would sometimes layer it over my Retin A Micro. Guess everyone's tolerance is different...

4:49 PM  
Anonymous samida said...

I love how you keep my up on the new Black chic lit game. BTW, everyone should really scrap together their change and get that Dior blush. Its soooo worth making your wallet feel lighter!

9:15 PM  
Blogger PinkCrystal1908 said...

Hey Tia, love your blog. I'm so glad to see back to the norm after that hospital bout. I was so worried I even said a little prayer. ;)

Anyhoo, I was hoping you could help me find a SPF-infused moisturizer for my combination/normal skin. Whenever I simply was my face with my Cetaphil cleanser, my skin remains clear, but every moisturizer I try breaks me out. As of now, I am only using vitamin E cream for when I wear makeup, but I know need to wear sunscreen everyday. Especially living in humid Mississippi.

I am 15 years old, so I don't know if this is a cruel case of puberty or what, but I would really like your advice so I won't want to kick myself when I'm 40.

Love ya Tia (and all the rest of you chicks who shake you beauty)!

12:53 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Okay Tia,

First,I'm sooo ready to read "Free Gift with Purchase" I always read her editor's page which is funny and cool.

Now I'm going have to say that not all of us beauty divas have a life of book signings,parties, hell not even a man to go get some Wings at Wild wings.:) So we put the kids to bed, finally reheat dinner and sit down to MTB3,The Hills, Laguna Beach,etc. I know I'm that girl who life right now is wrapped around a TV schedule or the latest book or mag. We all just don't have glammed up lives or we don't have them any more. And there absolutely nothing wrong with that.
I still love ya XOXO

6:51 PM  
Anonymous CousinKuka said...

First of all girl, lovin' Total Effects! Picked up two creams, one for me, one for mama-dukes and we are in LOVE! Second of all, even though I cannot see myself spending 41 dollars on some blush, I will get my butt to the beauty counter at Nordstrom's and get a sample or two... And finally, a question: the nail color you mentioned is soooo cute for summer. I am really into pinks and brights for my toes and fingers, and I like to stray from the pack by using cute nail art. What is your opinion on the little sheets of stick on flowers and rhinestones for your nails? Cheesy or cute if used in moderation? Note: one flower on each nail...

9:55 PM  
Anonymous Ellisha said...

Hey tia, luv the post and by the
way my sister used the bliss
peel and it worked wonders,you can't please everybody. I just wanted to tell you that you are
so appreciated for what you do. Some girls like me dream about having the fabulous life but live in places like missouri where the social scence is shall i say limited. Reading your beauty advise really makes me
feel like a beauty insider and that makes me fabulous even in missouri.


8:11 AM  
Blogger 1969 said...

Welcome back Tia.

I haven't tried the Bliss Peel so no problem here but I tend to have sensitive skin so I will stay away.

Now if you watch the episode of my Super Sweet Sixteen with "The Divo", you will laugh your behind off. That was pure comedy. I don't set my clock for it but if I catch an episode on the weekend, it's good while folding laundry.

4:48 PM  
Anonymous KRiSTOPHER DUKES said...

Ooh la love... I'm hardly into any eyeshadow other than shimmery black, and too much of it, but that YSL pallete is speaking to me. So gorgeous.

8:33 PM  
Anonymous Tami said...

Thanks Tia you are the best my books are on there way via I soo loved Cosmopolitan Girls.

P.S. I am loving "The Hills" ! hehe

3:45 PM  
Blogger Schanina said...

My beach reading research is complete, thanks Tia! I actually picked up Lyah's book the other day at B & N. LOVE the book's title, LOVED that song! I'll probably be jammin' to it on my IPOD while reading this "totally delicious" novel. Yum, Yum! Can't Wait!

5:33 PM  
Blogger Shelia said...

Girl, you know we're trying to maintain our youth by any means necessary...whether it by these shows or the beauty products we choose (smile).

9:21 PM  
Blogger MalcaJ said...

Okay the Bliss seemed like it started working but i think i just need to use something else with it so I'm trying a moisturizer with suncsreen so we'll see....Ok I must admit that teeny bopper reality shows are my guilty pleasure and I agree with the comment from anonymous. After a early morning preparing to go to a job I don't like but pays the bills, a long boring day of work and then having to come home to prepare to do the same exact thing the next day, sitting down to watch these overdramatic kids with their "drama" takes me away from my real life drama for a minute and gives me a laugh...and also there really is nothing else on tv right now...o and when is Bobby Brown coming back on?:)


9:07 AM  
Blogger mizzsuccess said...

I'd like you to know that I'm absolutely famdazzled that there is someone out there who shares alot of my personsa! I think it's just FAB-U-LUZZE! I was first introduced to you through a girl friend of mine who recommended that I read your book because I'd appreciate the mix of fashoion, laughter, and the knowing someone else (even if she is a book character) shares alot of our experiences! So keep doing your thing girl!

12:39 PM  
Blogger Suezette b.k.a. Mz.Black Geisha said...

I saw the YSL palette in a magazine and fell in love...I don't know who I'mma have to con into buying it for me, but I WANT IT!

7:47 PM  
Blogger Suezette b.k.a. Mz.Black Geisha said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

7:47 PM  
Blogger shimmerliciousdiva said...

Hey Tia, I was wondering if you could do a lot of us a huge favor. I would love to buy Dior, YSL, and all of these other high end beauty products, but for a chica on a student budget ($0), it is not possible. Could you pick your favorite drug store beauty products (Cover girl, Revlon, Maybelline, Rimmel, etc.)for brown girls? Maybe if you could do something like "as a substitute for MAC blush in Raisin, use .... Tia if you could do this for the kinda broke girls trying to Shake our Beauties, I, as well as many others would greatly appreciate it (I know that I am not the only one in this situation).

1:12 PM  
Anonymous coco_fiere said...

Tia, I admit I am addicted to So You Think You Can Dance! One word: Donyelle--sista rocks the pirouettes, leaps, and serves it. However, I am a former dancer so anything that takes me back to my days of Russian leaps and such does it 4 me. :) Loving the Lancome gloss and the Dior blush is on my maybe list (maybe I'll spend $41 on rouge, maybe I won't). Thanks for the list! Now I gotta get JGJ's book....

5:23 PM  
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