Thursday, September 28, 2006

Fashion show-off

Hey Hey Hey,
It’s me! I’m back! Thank you from the bottom of my hot pink heart (hot pink being the lipcolor du jour at the shows) for all of your sweet well wishes. In case you’re wondering, my migraine fog has finally cleared and I am officially back in the building! And actively gnawing my nails to a nub wondering who’s going to win Project Runway. I just love Michael to death—and no, not just because FINALLY we have a good-natured, level-headed, sweet-as-all-get-out young black man starring on a reality show (he’s the anti-Flavor Flav, is he not?)—but because he’s actually extraordinarily talented. Can I please wear his white cocktail dress with the black leather cinch-waist every day of my life until it becomes tattered and concealer-smudged (yep, herein lies the problem with applying makeup with your fingers…it gets everywhere)?

So, speaking of Project Runway, let’s get into New York City’s Olympus Fashion Week! As always, the people-watching was much more exciting than the actual shows. Take Zac Posen’s after-party at the Soho Grand. It was such an exclusive, chi chi affair that some celebs actually lost their sartorial sense. Exhibit A: Guess what brilliant, megalomaniacal hip-hop star-slash-producer swanned into the soiree wearing a smoke-grey Louis Vuitton MINK STOLE?! Kanye, of course. It was haphazardly flung across your boy’s shoulders like he was Diahann Carrol. And the lovely Mischa Barton—whose fashion choices I usually enthusiastically co-sign—was wearing a fluffy, lacy white headband that gave her a distinct ten-maids-a-milking vibe. And girls, Kate Bosworth was so emaciated that a shocked hush fell over the crowd upon her shaky entrance. On a non-celebrity note, however, I looked sorta cute in my off-the-shoulder Tracy Feith black mindress…

But the week wasn’t all about the parties, obviously. It was the Spring 2007 Collections, and everywhere you turned a new trend was being hatched. Judging from the turbans at Prada, the Out of Africa-style safari thingies at Ralph Lauren and a host of other fedoras, beanies, and messenger caps at Armani, DKNY and Marni—hats are the big thing. This is inconvenient for me, because I have a disproportionately huge head and can’t even successfully rock a baseball cap without feeling like I’ve stuck my head in a vice. In terms of shoes, it’s still all about the platform pump! You know those darling Christian Louboutins all the stars are rocking, with the wooden platforms? I just bought a super-cute knockoff at Urban Outfitters—the Oh Deer! Rounded Wooden Platforms ($58) even have Louboutin’s telltale red sole. Oh and girls, if you’re so over boho everything, you’ll DIE over Spring’s return to flouncy, flirty, ladylike dresses! Think Whitley Gilbert at a cotillion—in a good way. My favorite was this little red corvette from Ferragamo (above, left). I found a totally affordable version at Anthropologie—their lipstick red Hourglass Dress ($188) has the same kicky skirt and corset-like bodice. Yum.

And now, onto our favorite part!! Ladies, during the shows, your eagle-eyed beauty leader zeroed in on the four biggest beauty trends of the Spring 2007 Collections. Enjoy, and try not to wear them all at once…

Sick to death with love for you,
Your Tia


This might seem obvious, like when is perfect skin NOT a trend? But, let me tell you, at shows like Calvin Klein, Jill Stuart, Max Azria and Bottega Veneta (left) the models had such radiant, dewy, “I-just-had-the-best-sex-of-my-life” skin that they upstaged the clothes! Here's how to do it: Instead of heavy foundation, simply blend a creamy concealer under eyes and over blemishes. Then—and here’s the magic—using an oversized brush, dust a translucent shimmer powder allover to set the concealer. Kimora Lee Simmons’ KLS Beauty Powder Highlighter ($20) has light-reflecting particles that somehow camouflage uneven skin tones and discoloration…it’s simply gorgeous. Choose one of the four darkest shades—Honeycomb, Butter Pecan, Juicy Java or Chocolate Soufflé.

Faithful SYB readers are well-aware of the fact that I favor a bronzey lip. My mind has officially changed. At Michael Kors, Vera Wang and Oscar de la Renta (left), the models' lips were painted the sweetest shade of princess-pink, ever. Oh, that whole “Who me, sexy?” thing is just so irresistible, isn't it? And yes, brown girls can most definitely go there—as evidenced by cutie-pie model-of-the-moment Jaunel. After the shows, I ran out and bought Revlon Superlustrous Lip Gloss in Glossy Rose ($6.19)--this sheer, shimmery shade looks adorable alone or layered over brown lip pencil for more depth.

Ooooh, my favorite!! You know I LIVE for a bit o'gold around the eyes. No matter how intense your night was, a smudge of this sunny metallic shade instantly makes you look awake, refreshed and impossibly sexy. Which was not lost on the beauty squad at shows like Donna Karan and Anna Sui (left). And gold just happens to be stunning on brown skin. Blend a gilded shadow like Clinique Touch Tint for Eyes Shimmer Formula in Gold Glimmer ($14.50) just along the upper lashline, and then, using the pad of your pinky finger, dab it on the inside corners of your eyes (you know, around the tear duct area). Smokin!’

4.) GLOSSY, BOUNCY, SIDE-PARTED HAIR (please ignore the crazy lips)
For many seasons, we’ve all been rocking the heavily flatironed, center-parted locks, because it’s the proper Beyonce thing to do. But at Catherine Malandrino (“Angela, you look ridiculous”), Zac Posen and especially Nanette Lepore (left), I was so taken with the unapologetic glamorousness of the super-bouncy, swooped-to-the-side style! And how about that glossiness? On a beauty counter backstage, I squealed when I saw the product that my Dominican hairstylist uses on me every Sunday— Olive Oil Nourishing Sheen Spray ($4.49)! Spritz this vitamin E and olive oil-blended shine spray on wet hair before you blowdry, and then again on dry hair before you flatiron or use the curling iron—and you’ll have Barbie-hair-level glossiness that you wouldn’t believe.

Friday, September 22, 2006

So sick

Hey Ladies,
I've been missing you sooo much. Okay, so you know how I get really bad migraines? Well, earlier this week I found myself in the middle of a stress blizzard, which prompted a huge, ugly, ill-timed migraine attack--and thus, a little hospital vacay. When I first checked in, my roomie was a junkie who told the nurse that she was scared she might "lose her s&*t and f&%k somebody up" if she didn't leave her alone (yes, I promptly switched rooms). I'm feeling tons better and I'm finally out of the hospital, but my doctor advised me to keep a veeerrrry low profile for a little bit, just to pull myself together. So, mama's going to take a little SYB break this week, but I'll be back in no time with my Fashion Week roundup! Please don't be mad--I'd lose my s&^t and f&$k somebody up if I thought you were mad at me--and enjoy this breezy fall weather. Can't wait to break out my new ankle booties.
big fat love,

Monday, September 11, 2006

Sexual Chocolate

Hello My Pretties,
Well, I’m coming off of yet another bachelorette weekend! This time, it was for my middle sister, Devon (left), a frightfully sexy Washington DC lawyer getting married in October (you might recall that I enjoy calling her Brownie, because she’s sweet, soft, warm and brown). I threw the soiree with my youngest sister, Lauren, who's a content editor at Ohhh, it was so much fun! I can’t decide what was the best part! Was it…

1.) Spending the last three months perusing bachelorette party planning websites and buying random decorations and trinkets that no one ended up noticing but me? Things like, special bachelorette trivia cocktail napkins that ask things like, “How many times do you think the bride-to-be has made whoopee in her life?”

2.) Combing naughty specialty stores like Toys in Babeland for racy underthings? Now Brownie is the un-cheesiest girl I know, so the gift had to strike the perfect balance between raunch and chic. I ended up getting her a Candy G-String made out of strung-together candy necklaces (remember, from third grade?). Woo-hoo, do ya think I’m a nasty girl!!

3.) Sitting on the floor, surrounded by mounds of makeup, stuffing goodie bags with a personalized beauty regimen for each girl? Oh, I went to that special place. And a shout-out to Essie, who provided me with a bunch of electric-fuschia nail polishes—named Bachelorette Bash!!—for the girls.

4.) Giggling at Fonzworth Bentley’s eerily wrong Fashion Rocks performance at 5am, after we got home from dinner at Manhattan’s swanky Aspen restaurant and dancing with impassioned abandon at Lotus?

5.) Unveiling the enormous penis cake!! I got this brilliant slice of naughty deliciousness at a crazy East Village bakery called Masturbakers (hardy-har). Ladies, it's WAAAY to racy to reveal...but you can check it out (click on Cakes...its the "Male Torso," third down from the center. But a chocolate version, of course!). HAVE YOU EVER??! The thing was so detailed, it had six-pack abs and perfect little brown nipples!! But the best part wasn’t the anatomical correctness, however, it was the delicious chocolate icing. Omigod, once the cake was sliced, we sat around the table at Aspen in total silence, too busy inhaling the creamy chocolate perfection to speak. Is there anything better than good—really, REALLY GOOD—chocolate?

Well no, people, there isn’t. And that brings me to theme of this week’s post. Chocolate. Here, I bring you my favorite chocolate-scented products of all time. Now don’t get me wrong. I am not a fan of food-scented beauty. I think it’s corny and ticky-tacky teenagery. And I especially loathe chocolate done wrong—I mean, who wants to walk around smelling like a Ho-Ho? No, this stuff is chocolate done chic---just some delicate-fragranced, decadent-feeling products for grownup girls with a sexy sweet tooth. And they won’t compete with your perfume…these subtle cocoa scents will be your own little secret. So enjoy! The sweet stuff happens to be one of fall’s hottest trends, and you won’t gain a pound.



1.) BOURJOIS BRONZING POWDER, $18: Is this not the cutest thing ever?! This sunny bronzer is shaped to look like a real-life chocolate bar. And get this--it's cocoa-orange scented! So yummy, so cute--and just the thing to brighten your complexion as the cold, tan-fading weather sets in. I like to apply really rosy blush and then dust bronzer on top--it gives a really radiant, lying-in-the-afterglow flush.

2.) JAQUA MINT CHOCOLATE LIP WHIP, $14: Everything about this sheer bronzey-brown lip gloss is tres adorable—the hand-painted packaging (it looks likes some confection you’d find at a Victorian ice cream shoppe) to the absolutely dreamy scent (it’s slightly sweet, but infused with a minty tingliness—HEAVEN). Not licking the perfect-for-all-brown-skintones gloss off your lips is a challenge, but I believe in you girls. You’re a strong bunch.

3.) BOBBI BROWN POT ROUGE FOR LIPS & CHEEKS IN CHOCOLATE CHERRY, $22: Ms. Brown has whipped up a lovely little blush, here. Dab on the apples of your cheeks and, I swear, you’ll look instantly refreshed and awake. Now, this deep raisin-mahogany (it’s a lot darker in person) is an exception to today’s rule—it doesn’t actually smell like chocolate, but whatever. It’s in the name! And Bobbi Brown happens to so adore it that she’s teamed up with uber-fancy chocolate maker Vosges to whip up her own Bobbi Brown Candy Bar ($6) (she’s selling it at Vosges boutiques, Neiman Marcus, Bergdorf’s and! Told you it was a major fall trend.

4.) PACIFICA MEXICA COCOA CANDLE, $7.95-$21.95 (round, square, votive 6-pack): I’m obsessed with Mexican cocoa, are you? Ever since me and my sisters used to go to the Mexico display at DC Children’s Museum and actually ground up the cinnamon-and-nutmeg-infused cocoa bars for our own hot chocolate, I’ve been in love. If you live in New York, you must go to Café Habana on Elizabeth Street for the best Mexican Cocoa this side of Quetzalcoatl. If you live anywhere else, buy this spicy-sexy candle! There’s a reason why it's a cult favorite among candle luvahs.

5.) TUTTI DULCI MOISTURIZING SOUFFLE in FANTASIA DI CIOCCOLATA, ($9.95): This lushly rich, lightly textured whipped body cream is so irresistible that I get separation anxiety when I must leave the house. So I carry the jar around with me in my fab python-skinned handbag. And now I have scoliosis. Just kidding. But seriously, applying this stuff is like taking a dip in a nutmeg-y, vanilla-y, subtly cocoa-infused cloud. And men LOVE it.

Friday, September 01, 2006

My miracle nipples

Hey Hey Hey,
I’m exhausted. Though I’m only 28 (and have been for three years), I am officially an old lady. Wanna know why I’m exhausted? Because I went out THE DAY BEFORE YESTERDAY. Mama can no longer bounce back the way she used to. It’s really tragic, mourning the loss of your hot stuff, shake-your-money-maker-like-somebody’s-tryin-to-pay-ya former self. But even more tragic is the way I got into the party.

Allow me to set the scene. I’ve just arrived at Common’s pre-VMA “cookout” at Sky Studios, this deeply chic penthouse apartment that fancy folks rent out for parties. Oh, girls! It’s really all about the rooftop, which has a glittering pool (the view from the deck of downtown Manhattan is totally breathtaking…and oh yeah! It’s where Samantha and Richard slow-dance at dusk on S&TC), and a sultry secret garden (complete with lush trees and a tropical flowers…perfect spot for on-the-low trysts and omigod-did-you-see-her-hooker-shoes gossip sessions). The point is, Sky Studios is one of the sexiest party venues in the city. So that, coupled with the fact that yummy Common was the guest of honor made it impossible at the door. Okay, so I’m standing there with Adam, my sister Lauren, and our friend Mike the Suit (he’s a suitmaker-to-the-stars. Seriously, most of his clients have had their own Cribs episode). Outside the door, it’s absolute BEDLAM. The entire block is roped-off. ‘Bows are recklessly thrown. Folks are anxiously texting every baller on their call list, trying to work a hook-up. Now folks, I’m lucky enough to be on the damn list because one of my dearest friends, the very chic & sassy publicist, Miss Mashariki, is THROWING the party. But Door Guy isn’t impressed with this information, because at that moment, apple-bottomed video vixen Melyssa Ford is sauntering in. And she’s followed by Sleepy Brown, and a bevy of Victoria’s Secret models, and Kelis, and random NFL guys, and Janice Combs (okay, why?), all of whom sidle on in, sans problem. And I start to get heated. I tap on Door Guy’s shoulder again, and before I can say “I’m way too old to fight to get into yet another party where me and my adorable, brilliant, hilarious girlfriends are considered less interesting than Lauren Conrad,” he smiled benevolently and shoo’d us crew in. Hark! It was a miracle!! Of course, twenty minutes later I realized the true nature of said miracle. One of the straps of my plunging halter-top had slid over, totally exposing my nipple. Yes, girls, my nip was the miracle.

There is a moral to this story. You never know where you’re next miracle will come from. And for me, the most exciting miracles come in beauty product-form (I know, huge surprise!). And what kind of friend would I be if I didn’t share them with you? Behold, the five miracle-workers that are currently setting my world—and nipples—ablaze.



1.) TARTE FRXTION SUGAR EXFOLIATOR & LIP BALM DUO, $11: Okay, I have super-chapped lips. They’re so bad, I’m constantly either rubbing off the dead skin with my finger, or nibbling it off. A terrible habit, but what am I to do? Lip gloss on top of chapped lips is beyond gross. Well, the folks at Tarte have remedied this situation with this dual-sided flake-busting balm! The exfoliating side is embedded with brown sugar particles, that, when gently scrubbed against chapped lips, sloughs off all the flakes. The rich, vitamin E-infused side moisturizes your newly smooth lips, post-exfoliation. It’s brilliant. I’ve already worn the damn thing down to a nub! Oh, and the brown sugar tastes fantastic. Some guy on the subway caught me licking the sugary exfoliating side, and I was so humiliated, I had to get out three stops early.

2.) RESCUE BEAUTY NAIL POLISH IN REVAMP, $18: As evidenced by the fall runway shows and superstars like Lindsay, Nicole and J. Lo, this season’s hottest nail trend is goth-black polish on short, rounded nails. If you’re anything like me, though, black nail polish is just a tad too look-at-how-tough-I-am. You know? That’s why I hallelujah’d to the heavens when I saw Rescue’s take on the noir nails trend—Revamp is indeed black, but it’s blended with a deep ruby glitter. Oh, it’s breathtaking! On-trend, but with a chic twist.

3.) DUWOP SUB-SURFACE UNDEREYE PRE-CONCEALER TREATMENT, $22.50: I’m so excited about this product I can barely type!! Seriously, every single one of you should use Sub-Surface before applying concealer on blemishes. Here’s why. On one side, you have a medicated, salicylic acid-infused blemish treatment, and on the other, there’s a special primer that ensures your concealer won’t crease or separate or get oily during the day. Use the zit zapper first, then the primer, and finally, your concealer. So, while your skin LOOKS perfect, your blemishes are being treated, as well!! Have you ever?

4.) LANCOME FATALE 3D COMB MASCARA, $22: Remember when I talked about fiber mascaras, and how they made lashes look amazingly full? Well, if it’s length you’re after, it’s all about Fatale. Lancome has pioneered brand-new mascara technology—the usual wand had been replaced with a comb! So you’re literally applying the mascara with a built-in comb. Girls, this mascara is so potent, so dramatically lengthening, that your lashes will seem to touch your brows. My only thing—be very careful when applying, because it can get gunky if you’re not paying attention. Hot stuff!

5.) JOHNSON'S SOOTHING NATURALS SOOTHE & PROTECT BALM, $4.39: Ignore the fact that this balm is for babies. It’s fabulous. So, I was looking for something to moisturize my disgustingly dry elbows, feet, and ankles (sexy, yes, I know)—something heavy-duty, but not greasy. Herein lies the challenge. EVERYTHING super-moisturizing is greasy. Except for this adorable little pocket-size roll-up stick. It’s so mild you can use it on your face and lips, and it’s totally portable! I keep it in my bag for emergencies. So, yeah, baby products. I’m seeing them in a whole new light.

Yet another hot & spicy publicity job opening!!!

Hey girls,
Okay, yet again, my fabulous friend Tiffani Carter, an account director at one of Manhattan's hottest beauty/fashion public relations firms, Tractenberg & Co., is looking for an assistant!! Tractenberg represents all sorts of fab clients (like Stila, Mizani, Bath & Body Works, Jergens, Clairol Professional, and a million more), so whoever lands this publicity assistant job will have an amaaaazingly invaluable, career-building experience!!

In Miss Tiffani's own words, she's needs "a bright, savvy, energetic young woman who is raring to go!" If that sounds like you, send her your resume and cover letter...good luck, superstar, and here's her contact info:

Tiffani D. Carter
Account Director
Tractenberg & Co.
116 East 16th Street
New York, NY 10003
212.929.7979 x2241
347.742.9875 cell

big kiss,