Archive for the ‘Antioxidants’ Category

Winterized Beauty

With the New Year here and the cold weather still here, it is even more important to make sure to protect your skin. I always post on the importance of staying hydrated and keeping moisturized. Even though I try to drink as much water as possible, my skin still shows signs of dehydration at times during the winter months so I need to stay on top of my skin care regime. I wanted to bring you some of my absolute favourite things that I have discovered in 2012 that gave my skin that added boost of moisture.

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The first thing I want to talk about is treating yourself to a facial. Now it is important to keep up with weekly maintenance at home, but I recommend finding a great spa near you to pamper yourself each month. A lot of spas have specials that make it affordable to go on a regular basis. For those of you that have been following the blog for some time, know that I just adore SKN Holistic Rejuvenation Clinic in Vancouver. From the moment I have been going to them my skin has been in love and just can’t seem to get enough. I swear that my skin acts up sometimes just so I will go in for a treatment. On a recent visit to SKN, I received the “Perk Me Up Peel“.This peel is a great, quick treatment that creates visible change and hydration in the skin. It boosts the skin by removing surface cells with AHA’s and is completed with an infusion of antioxidants.First off they started by cleansing my skin with Osmosis “Cleanse” with 20% lactic acid added to it. Then a 50% lactic acid was applied to my skin and left on for 2-3 minutes to help with cell turnover, decongestion and hydration. After a Rhonda Allison Omega 6 oil was put on my skin, along with a milk mask to pump up the moisture. While the mask and oil sat on my skin, a cold jade roller was glided across my face (this was the best part). To finish off the treatment, I had more Omega 6 oil and a growth factor serum added for healing and rejuvenating. Not only was my skin glowing when I left, but the next morning and days after I had clear, radiant skin~ no more dehydration and congestion. You can check out SKN Shop  for all these lines and many more great products.

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Now I have some absolute favourites when it comes to MUST HAVE products that hold a permanent residence in my cupboard. With saying this I want to not only include them in this post but also introduce you to some new contenders I have had cross my path.

Hair~ Now since I cut my hair last February and have a shorter style, I have really started to play around with different products. Recently I have started the journey of becoming a blonde, which means with curly hair as well, I need to find lines that give my hair tons of moisture. Here is a list of some of my favourite products that are keeping my hair in top shape this New Year.

Joico “Smooth Cure” hair care line~ This line gives my hair tons of moisture and helps protect it from the dry winter weather. I love their Sulfate-free shampoo and conditioner, both contain KeraShield Complex that reduces frizz and leaves my hair manageably soft and smooth. After I like to add Joico’s leave-in rescue treatment. This cream can be used alone on wet hair as a styling aid or it can be applied before blowdrying your hair. When blowdrying my hair I also like to add their thermal styling protectant, these two combined protect my hair against humidity and thermal damage. The whole “Smooth Cure” line from Joico smells great on top off all the goodness it does for your tresses. Another great leave in treatment I found was Biolage Smoothing Shine Milk. This light-weight mist helps control flyaway’s, frizz and gives added shine while leaving my curls bouncy and soft.

The original Mane ‘n Tail hair care line~ It’s funny I originally heard of this line and tried it years ago, but was recently sent some product. This line gave great moisture and strength to my hair. I enjoyed the shampoo, conditioner and hair strengthener. One product that was new to me (and not hair related) was their Hoofmaker hand & nail therapy, it was originally developed for horses to moisturize dry, cracked and brittle hooves. This cream is light-weight and non-greasy. It adds instant moisture to dry hands and left my cuticles nourished.

Moroccan Oil products~ What’s not to love about this line. One product that I recently discovered during a photo shoot was their Luminous hairspray, all I can say is it smells heavenly~ like being on a beach in the Caribbean. It has medium hold but still keeps your hair manageable with a natural look. It’s even easy to brush out if you’re needing to change-up your style. 03739

LUSH~ Awwwwww Good ol LUSH Cosmetics, what can I say ~ How I love thee! As many of you know LUSH holds a special place in my heart. I have discovered so many fabulous products from them that I enjoy sharing them all with you. When it comes to hair, LUSH has been a life saver. I am totally obsessed with their R&B hair moisturizer which I have posted about before. It is one of my go to products that I also use as a styling aid. The Blousey shampoo is a new-found favorite that contains rose oil, blackcurrant absolute, thyme and rosemary. It has fresh smashed organic bananas that provide my hair (especially being blonde) with intense moisture. Next I discovered Happy Happy Joy Joy hair conditioner, which reminds me of Springtime and all the flowers in bloom. With Orange flower absolute, rosewood and grapefruit oils your hair will be dancing a happy tune. Once a week I like to run a bath, apply a hair treatment/mask and relax. There is nothing I enjoy more than hair products that contain peppermint and honey, and Roots hair treatment contains both. I love the way it tingled and left a cooling sensation on my scalp. Honestly my hair had major bounce after this treatment! Last but not least Shine So Bright split end treatment. I love adding this to my hair as a finishing touch after drying. You can use to mend split ends or tame fly-aways as well. It’s a perfect size to slip into you purse and have as a quick fix when your out on the town.baby-lips_pack-shot-crop_Quenched

This past October I attended World MasterCard Fashion Week in Toronto and had the opportunity to go backstage with Redken and Maybelline to see all the magic created before the shows. I have always been a fan of both brands and during this trip I came across some new products that caught my eye. First off Hair! Again with shorter curly hair, finding a styling cream that doesn’t weigh my hair down is a little tricky. Also one that doesn’t leave it looking greasy is the key too. That’s where Redken Tousle Whip 04 comes in. This cream smells divine and delivers soft texture while providing a good hold. Then when I want to blow out and style my hair I first use Redken Smooth Down Heat Glide, with macadamia oil it adds protection and leaves my hair glossy smooth. After I dry it, I use Redken Iron Shape 11 finishing thermal spray. This heat protective spray locks in curl and straight shapes while adding a touchable, shiny finish. There are many Maybelline products that now fill my makeup bag, one being their new moisturizing lip balm “Baby Lips“. This lip balm provides 8 hours of hydration and I was passed on a beauty trick from Maybelline’s lead Makeup Artist Grace Lee ~ use it to highlight your features. That’s right girls, you can add “Quenched” (shown here) to your cheekbones for contouring. This new balm also comes in scrumptious shades and my new favorite is “Cherry Me”.

brown_ss_angleFace and Body~ When it comes to my skin I love products that smell great, deep clean and keep me well moisturized. I believe in exfoliating your skin each week, always moisturizing and not going to bed with makeup on (though we all have done this a few times I bet). Here are some of my favourites from 2012 that I can’t seem to put down. Even though I love going to the spa, I love even more finding products that I can indulge in right in my own home. During my birthday last year I received La Licious brown sugar & vanilla sugar souffle’ and this is definitely a scrub you need to get your hands on. It exfoliates your skin to perfection and did I mention it’s all natural! It has all my favourite ingredients~ Brown cane sugar, coconut oil, sweet almond oil and honey. It smells so good you will want to eat it. Another great scrub that I was introduced to by the same friend was Jade & Ginseng Sugar Scrub from Jade Spa. With the detoxifying properties of jade and many health benefits of ginseng, your skin will  be exfoliated, renewed, smooth and hydrated. These two have permanent homes beside my tub.

When it comes to shower time and cleansing my skin I tend to mix it up between using scrubs, body washes, milks and my latest craze~shower jelly. LUSH  introduced me to shower jelly’s and I was instantly hooked. A few of my favourites have been Calacas (limited time only)~which smells like green life saver candies, Ghost~which smells like a garden of jasmine and lilies, and my latest obsession Whoosh~ which bursts with a lemon scent and is sure to wake you up. The great thing about these shower jelly’s is they clean your skin so well without stripping the moisture. Another fave from LUSH  is their Rub Rub Rub shower scrub. This sea salt scrub contains a mimosa and orange blossom scent that is sure to awaken your senses. After cleaning your skin you always need to moisturize. It is said the best way is to apply your crams and lotions while you skin is still damp. Sticking with a theme I came across a few beauty finds from LUSH,  Vanilla DEE-Lite body lotion  is vitamin-packed and made with their Vanilla Fountain fragrance and fresh kiwis. Though this lotion is light it still leaves your skin supple. Another great moisturizer for those looking for an organic line is Consonant C ultra moisturizing organic face cream. This cream is formulated with organic botanicals and natural source hydrators making it a perfect fit for the driest winter weather. Last but not least when it comes to cleansing my face I look for a wash that is gentle for sensitive eyes, deep cleans and won’t over-dry my skin. Dermalogica’s Special Cleansing Gel does the job. I love how easy this cleanser washes my face and easily rinses off. Dermalogica products are formulated without artificial fragrances and colours, making them suitable for all skin types.

Wel there you have it, a few of my favorites from 2012 that I’m continuing to love in the New Year. I’d love to hear what your MUST HAVE beauty products are that you just can’t live without.

Remember to say that you heard it first from BeautyBuzz411!

I look forward to hearing from all of you, email at beautybuzz411@gmail.com or simply leave a comment here

Much Love, Beauty Buzz 411

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“Balanced and Fit………a fitness journey”

44448_10152383415765574_598047244_nTwelve weeks and counting…….. It feels incredible to finally be at the 3 month mark and see the results that I have been working so hard to achieve. Lately, people have been giving wonderful compliments on my transformation and wrote me saying I have inspired them to start their own fitness journey. My inspiration these past few weeks have been thanks to my trainer Hanan and her #operationbooty plan. We are trying to focus on building me some buns of steel. This past week I came across this picture of fitness model Jamie Eason and I am now using this pic as my daily inspiration going forward. I am setting my goal to achieving Glutes like hers!

Now that I have invested so much time into my fitness journey, I am finding it more enjoyable to be at the gym. First off Steve Nash Sports Clubs have a great mix of machines, free weight, cardio equipment and more. It really makes it easy to challenge your self and switch up your routines. I have to admit, I am a fan of free weights and intervals thanks to my trainer Hanan Arabatlian from Hanan Fitness. Her program has kept me motivated while always challenging me. Every time my body hit a plateau, she upped the game. My 4 pack of abs would love to say a great big THANK YOU to both Hanan and Steve Nash Fitness Clubs for sponsoring my fitness journey.

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As usual my diet has been going strong and I have really been getting into finding new ways to add more veggies into my day. This past week I decided to indulge in a new smoothie. I took the following raw veggies and fruits (celery, kale, broccoli, apples, beets, bananas, red pepper, carrots and lemons), combined them in a blender with some coconut water. It may not sound that appetizing but it tasted really good. There are so many nutrients and health benefits from each of these items. I know a lot of people are into juicing these days, but I like to eat the whole thing as the pulp is great for you.

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In my last few posts I have been raving about my love for beets. Being Ukrainian and growing up enjoying my grandmothers delicious cooking, I have always loved beets. Beets have so many health benefits including being rich in vitamins and antioxidants, anti-inflammatory properties, helping with cell detoxification and cleansing, as well they are low in calories~plus so much more. A few months back I interviewed the ever so lovely Jillian Harris. This fellow Ukrainian posted her family Borscht recipe on her site that I just had to share. I made it and it was so delicious. This is a guilt free way to indulge in some yummy goodness. Also if you aren’t already a fan of Jillian’s website, I suggest you check it out……there are so many scrupulous recipes and amazing decorating tips!

Though my 12 week “Balanced and Fit…..a fitness journey” has come to an end, I am looking forward to the next phase in continuing my fitness plans. I will keep you up to date on what’s going on and post when I can. I just signed up at the gym so my New Years will be off to a great, strong, healthy start. Again I want to thank Hanan and Steve Nash Sports Club for this past three months~ I couldn’t have done it without you!

Remember  to say that you heard it first from BeautyBuzz411!

I look forward to hearing from all of you, email at beautybuzz411@gmail.com or simply leave a comment here

Much Love, Beauty Buzz 411

“Balanced and Fit……. a fitness journey”

fitness-quotes1I can’t believe I am approaching the three-month mark since I started my fitness journey. The only other time I have completed something similar in duration was when I entered a fitness competition through Muscle Hers fitness magazine a few years back. I completed 9 weeks, so to be at 3 months seems incredible and I can’t help but be proud of myself. I love the quote pic this week “It never gets easier, you just get stronger!”. The initial stages were tough as my body was adjusting to  getting back into a routine of hitting the gym. But as time goes on it is still challenging and so it should be. You should never get to a point where you workout and don’t feel the burn or hit a plateau. You should always look for ways to push your body and shock your muscles. The one thing that does get easier is how your body recovers as you get stronger. By staying committed and making fitness a part of your lifestyle, you will gain strength like you never knew you had.

The one thing that has impressed myself as the weeks have gone on is how I’m able to lift heavier weights and do intervals. Last week my trainer Hanan had added in an additional day for my legs where I do back to back exercises with no break in between. I have to admit, I got my butt kicked (which was her mission). After my first set I was feeling like I had done three, but I knew I had to stay focus and that it was just mind over matter. Too often in the past I would have done one set and quit, not this time. I finished all three sets and then proceeded to do cardio. I can tell you that I definitely felt it the next day and I am starting to see my rear end firm up. My stomach has a nice little 4.5 pack.

At the end of my sets  I also had another inspiration~ while at the gym I had a gentleman who was in a wheelchair come into the room and workout beside me. It made me stop for a moment and realize how much I have to be grateful for and that there are no excuses. I was so motivated by his determination and focus that it helped push me harder and inspired me. I normally do not work out in that room at Steve Nash Fitness and I am so glad I did that day. There are many people out there that have difficult circumstances that could make them throw their hands up and give up, instead they don’t let it hold them back and persevere. I also wanted to share a video I saw recently that truly inspired me ~ Never, Ever Give Up. Arthur’s Inspirational Transformation!
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As for my diet, I have been pretty disciplined with staying on track. There have been long working days where it’s tempting to grab junk food or make poor food choices. Not any more! On the go I continue to opt for fruit, nuts, veggie smoothies and protein shakes. My obsession with Kale continues, I have been eating tons of salads with fresh raw kale (seen in picture here). I take some butter lettuce and mix kale, red peppers, cucumbers, celery and hearts of palm (which are so tasty and remind me of artichoke hearts~not to mention have many health benefits). For the dressing I use a little apple cider vinegar mixed with a few drops of honey and some olive oil. If you want a bit more of the good fats, I suggest slicing some avocado and adding it to your salad.

This next week will be fun as I am doing a HUGE photo shoot with an amazing team. With this said I am making sure to workout extra hard, stay super hydrated and eat clean. I will be experimenting with fruit and veggie shakes and make sure to post some pictures and recipes next week.

Well Week 12, let’s do this!

Thank you to my personal trainer Hanan Arabatlian from Hanan Fitness  for my fitness program &Steve Nash Fitness Clubs for sponsoring my training at their various gyms.

Remember  to say that you heard it first from BeautyBuzz411!

I look forward to hearing from all of you, email at beautybuzz411@gmail.com or simply leave a comment here

Much Love, Beauty Buzz 411

“Balanced and Fit…….a fitness journey”

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Ten weeks have passed and the lessons keep coming. This past week I experienced food poisoning and it left me out of commission for more days than I wished to experience. This was tough as I had already been fighting the flu for a few weeks. Unfortunately I had to cut my gym time short and limit the amount of exercise. At times like this when you get a wrench thrown into things, you have to take care of yourself. I could have pushed myself and completed my workouts, but I feel in my gut that it would have done more harm than good. This picture quote is perfect, you only have one body, you might as well take care of it. When your body is fighting off something, sometimes the only thing to do is get some rest. So that is what I did and I am feeling a lot better. My diet this week lacked as I was not able to eat much. With this said, when I did have an appetite I made sure to get in as much protein as I could and stay on top of my leafy greens. I consumed many shakes~ Kale and me are becoming bff’s.

In my last check-in with Hanan, I sent the pictures wearing a bikni so she could see better what was going on in my overall body. She really wants to target my booty so she has added an additional lower body workout. I am excited for my workouts this week and look forward to the continued changes to come.

I am ready to jump back into my routine and hit the gym and nutrition hard this week. I love odd numbers so week 11….. I’m ready for you!

Thank you to my personal trainer Hanan Arabatlian from Hanan Fitness  for my fitness program &Steve Nash Fitness Clubs for sponsoring my training at their various gyms.

Remember  to say that you heard it first from BeautyBuzz411!

I look forward to hearing from all of you, email at beautybuzz411@gmail.com or simply leave a comment here

Much Love, Beauty Buzz 411

 

“Balanced and Fit………a fitness journey”

These past 9 weeks have been such a learning experience for myself. I can’t believe how fast time has gone by! Over these past 2 weeks I have struggled with being a little under the weather, but that hasn’t stopped me from allowing my body to rest a few days and then getting right back into the swing of things. My upper body and back continue to lean out and show definition. My lower half  (meaning my legs) are definitely building muscle but not leaning out as quick as I would like. I know that I have to be patient and your lower body and stomach (especially) take longer, these are the trouble/stubborn areas for woman. With this said though my core stability and strength is developing and I continue to chisel away at my ultimate goal! 6 pack abs!

This week I have 2 inspiration pictures, the first has no quote, it’s simply one of my favourite pictures lately of No doubts lead singer Gwen Stefani. She has always had amazing abs, but this picture inspires me in so many ways. I love how Gwen has been a top fashion icon for years and she continues to Rock It. I love the whole outfit, her blond hair in a bun (my old go to do which I’m aiming for again) and beautiful healthy abs. Once I have achieved my fitness goal and have rock hard abs, I will remake this shoot. So in my eyes this picture represents a 1000 words and inspiration.


This week with being on the go and still feeling under the weather, I did not have a huge appetite and found it hard to eat as much as I have been. I made sure to eat as much protein as I could handle and small meals more often. One thing I could stomach was my oatmeal in the mornings. I added berries and nuts to make sure I loaded up on my nutrients and antioxidants. I decided to add juicing this week to make sure I was getting my veggies in my system. My favourite came from an inspiration from Jugo Juice~ kale, spinach, berries and beets, it’s called “Can’t Beet This”. One thing when you are feeling run down or sick is to make sure to stay hydrated, this is even more important when your not feeling well.

I love my second picture quote, I now realize how to incorporate fitness into my every day and there really is no more excuses.There is no such thing as quitting anymore and I plan to finish what I started. All anyone really has to do is get over the mental struggle we all go through and check self doubt at the door. Anyone can accomplish anything the set their mind to. On this past weeks check-in with my trainer Hanan, she asked me to send my pictures wearing a bikini (which was a scary thought). Well I have to say that I bought this bikini that was a few sizes too small a few years back and it’s finally starting to fit. It was so encouraging and exciting to think of bikini shopping for the summer. Alright week 10, I’m ready for you~ BRING IT ON!

Thank you to my personal trainer Hanan Arabatlian from Hanan Fitness  for my fitness program &Steve Nash Fitness Clubs for sponsoring my training at their various gyms.

Remember  to say that you heard it first from BeautyBuzz411!

I look forward to hearing from all of you, email at beautybuzz411@gmail.com or simply leave a comment here

Much Love, Beauty Buzz 411

Look Good and Feel Great with MASC

One thing that Beauty Buzz 411 is constantly on the look out for is fabulous men’s skin care. I have spoken to many men and skin care is not much of an importance on their list. Usually because they want to keep it simple, don’t have time and most don’t know what’s best to use. Beauty Buzz 411 is pleased to be working with MASC, a one stop shop in Vancouver for everything when it comes to skin care for the boys. Their online shop is amazing and I love how they are selective on which brands they carry. From The moment I stepped foot into the Vancouver store (in the heart of Yaletown) I felt right at home. It doesn’t hurt that Owners Patrick Levesque and Jamie Beuthin are incredibly knowledgeable and are such amazing guys. I still remember the moment I first met Patrick, it was an instant connection and I knew that we would work on something great together. As the months rolled on I have had the chance to get to know Patrick more and realize how down to earth he is and passionate he is about mens skin care needs.

Beauty Buzz 411 will be working with MASC and testing out the latest and greatest skin care for men. There will be on going monthly posts on what products and lines are a “MUST HAVE”! Recently I had the opportunity to indulge (along with my male panelists) in some amazing beauty products that were an instant hit. First was the Jack Black “Beard Lube” Conditioning Shave. I have to say this was a HUGE Winner for both myself and the boys. I used it on my legs and was blown away, I actually think it may be the best I’ve ever tried! As for the men they found it incredible, a 4 day hair growth shaved as easily as 1 day (without the razor catching the hair). With jojoba, eucalyptus and macadamia nut oil your skin will be left feeling clean and soft. Beard Lube is a pre-shave oil, shave cream and skin conditioner all in one. Not only does it go on clear making it easy for the men to see the hair, but it rinses easily and won’t leave a film or clog your blade.

Now you all know I am an advocate for exfoliation, well Menscience “Microfine” Face Scrub is a great addition to any skin type regime. I love how this product contains glycolic acid to remove dead cells, salicylic acid to clear pores and allantoin/aloe/glycerin to soften and soothe skin. It’s gentle for the face but still worked great on the chest and back! For the men it was great to prepare the skin for shaving. Also from the same line, another absolute MUST HAVE was Menscience “Advanced Face Lotion”. This lotion was ultra light-weight yet provided mega moisture, perfect for the men (especially those travelling on planes a lot). Not only is it formulated with advanced water-binding agents and skin-refining ingredients, It helps renew and restore your complexion. It really nurtures and protects your skin.

Last but not least I wanted to find a new cleanser that would be great for everyday use without stripping the skin of moisture. I discovered Kyoku “Daily Facial Cleanser” , it is inspired by Japanese herbal skin remedies and is designed especially with a mans skin in mind. I loved the way it felt on my skin and the scent of peppermint was uplifting. I was very pleased with these 4 beauty finds and look forward to searching out and bringing you all more. There was one more product that I tested out, Evolution Man Conceal and Treat and I feel it’s the perfect concealor for Men. It isn’t greasy and has a matte finish, making it great for providing coverage without looking like you’re wearing make up. I highly recommend picking one up as you never know when a late night or blemish will throw your complexion for a loop.

I recently had the chance to interview Patrick and find out the 411 on what’s to know when it comes to skin care for the boys!

BB411~ You and Jamie are the founders of MASC, how did the idea come to be?

PL~We graduated with Bachelor of Commerce degrees in Entrepreneurial Management, with no specific ideas of how we were going to apply that in the real world. We worked at several different jobs and gained some invaluable experience before it dawned on us about getting into men’s skin care & grooming. We both found ourselves having a hard time finding products  that were on the market, but were just not easily accessible. We also disliked having to go into a women’s shop or department store to find one shelf of product for men, which seemed more of an afterthought than anything else.

BB411~You carry select product lines, what do you look for in deciding which ones to carry?

PL~We consider the reputation of the brand, if it’s unique in comparison to other brands we carry, whether or not the product works well, the quality of the ingredients, whether it’s tested on animals, and of product packaging. We also really strive to offer our customers something unique and thus don’t see the point in offering a brand they can easily buy at the drug store.

BB411~ What do you want people to feel when shopping in the store or online with Masc? What makes you different from other stores?

PL~ We want people to feel comfortable and informed at masc. We are not about pressuring a guy to buy something, or the most expensive product, but rather finding the best products for their skin or to address their specific concerns. We take the time to ask questions, and are always happy to provide samples if he’s uncertain. Our store caters specifically to men, is run by men, we are knowledgeable about our products, and obviously have direct experience with skin care and grooming for men. We know what works. Online we try to provide as much information, including videos where we talk about the products so that they can feel like they’re in the store, even when they are not. We are renowned not only for our extremely high level of customer service but also for our unique assortment of quality products. Most of our brands will not be found anywhere else in Vancouver, and in some cases even in Canada.

BB411~How important is skin care for men?

PL~Men tend to underestimate the importance of a good skin care routine. If you consider the fact that men take blades to their face when shaving, I’d almost say it’s even more important for men. There are various skin complications that can arise from improper shaving techniques or poor quality products.

BB411~What are some key points for men in taking care of their skin?

PL~Cleanse & moisturize daily, both morning and night. Use a good shaving cream and exfoliate a few times a week right before you shave. Not only with this improve the appearance of your skin, but it will also allow for a smoother and less irritating shave. Just remember, your shave can make or break the appearance of your skin so it’s important to really figure this part out. Also, your under eye area can be the first area of your face that will show signs of aging. Using a good under eye product daily, morning and night will go a long way. The key is consistency with all of this. Get into a good routine and stick to it. The more you take care of your skin now, the more benefits you’ll reap in the future. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, as the saying goes.

BB411~Does nutrition and fitness play an importance in healthy skin?

PL~It’s all connected. If you don’t take care of your body by eating healthy, keeping hydrated, and exercising, it will reflect on the health of your skin as well. Just like if you work out like crazy, but eat takeout every night, you’re not achieving the optimal results that you could be.

BB411~#1 mistake men make when it comes to taking care of their skin?

PL~Not moisturizing. Guys have either never been told they should moisturize, and never experienced the benefits, or have had a bad experience with a poor quality moisturizer that made them feel greasy. There are some great moisturizers available that will make your skin look and feel great, and it is so important to moisturize daily.

BB411~ 3 beauty products you carry with you always?

PL~I don’t necessarily carry any beauty products with me on a day-to-day basis besides a Jack Black Lip Balm. If I had to choose another, I’d select a hand cream. More often than not I don’t have a bag with me so I have to keep it simple. Oh, one product that is good to keep at work though is a jar of toner pads. Sometimes if you’re going somewhere straight after work and want to freshen up without having to wash your face, toner pads are great for that.

BB411~ #1 beauty product you could not live without?

PL~ The Vitamin E Moisturizer from (Malin+Goetz). I’ve been using it for years and it works so well. It’s oil-free and they use fatty acids as the primary moisturizing ingredient, so it absorbs into the skin very well.

BB411~ Favorite cleanser and exfoliant?

PL~ My favorite cleanser right now is the Menscience Daily Face Wash and my favorite scrub is the Urth Face Scrub.

BB411~ Favorite Cologne?

PL~ Duro by Nasomatto

BB411~ What does beauty mean to you?

PL~ Good question. I’d have to say that beauty comes from the inside out. I know that’s cliché, but I know that for me, if someone is an awful person, it changes the way I see them. The same goes for someone with a big heart. I think someone who respects others and themselves is also the same person that will take care of themselves and try to reflect on the outside how they are on the inside. It doesn’t always go hand in hand though.

BB411~ What does it mean to give back?

PL~ It means helping those that are less fortunate or that need a helping hand of some sort. There are so many organizations out there that need support and we feel really good about being able to help whenever we can.

BB411~ What charities or causes are you involved in or that are dear to your heart?

PL~ I’m definitely a supporter of anti-bullying and different causes that go along with that. We have and continue to support many Out In School events put on by Friends & Company. Also, we support the Dr. Peter AIDS Foundation as well as they are such a fantastic organization. Another one that is important to me is Autism Speaks. My niece has autism and it’s becoming more and more common and requires a lot of support and awareness within the community because there’s still so much unknown about it. Families with kids that have autism need all the help they can get. We support other causes, including different sports teams etc, but those two are ones that stand out in my mind.

BB411~ What inspires you?

Wow, that’s a good one. I think I’m inspired by the fact that all limitations are self-imposed. When someone says I can’t, I want to prove them wrong. Being an entrepreneur, there are no limits and it’s all up to us how big we want to dream. The other day I was at the gym after having not made it a priority for a while, and I saw a blind man working out, with his guide dog helping him navigate through a busy gym. People like THAT inspire me.

BB411~ That is truly inspiring, WOW!

BB411~ Favorite quote?

PL~ “The best way to predict your future is to create it.”

BB411~ You are also one of the founders of Homorazzi, can you tell me a bit about that?

PL~ Homorazzi started about two years into Masc being open. I started it with my friend Donovan and a bunch of our friends were eager to join in as well. It’s  an entertainment site where we write about the latest in TV, movies, music, celebrities, gay issues, and of course, intermixed with some eye candy. It’s been an exciting ride and we’ve had the pleasure of meeting so many cool people along the way. We also have a show on OUTtv now where a panel of four of us talk about the same sorts of topics that we cover on our site.

BB411~ You are openly gay, has that been a struggle for you in your life?

PL~ Every since I’ve come out of the closet, being gay has never been a struggle. The struggle was when I was still in the closet and having to constantly lie to myself and others. When I was true to who I was, the world opened up many doors and I am a much happier person for it.

BB411~ What advice would you give to the younger generation that may be struggling with coming out?

PL~ We grow up hearing the phrase “be yourself” and it couldn’t be more true in this scenario. There is no rule for when you should come out, so do it when you feel ready, but know that your life will get better in the long run once you do.

BB411~ If you could tell your younger self something you know now what would it be? (a lesson learned or wisdom gained?)

PL~ I would tell my younger self that my family and friends will love me for who I am, regardless of my sexuality. I would also say to myself, “Follow your dreams and do what makes you happy in life.”

BB411~ Fun fact that people may not know about you?

PL~ I just found out last year that I was adopted! The news brought my family closer together so it was a positive experience.

To find out more about MASC and all the faboulous products check out their website, visit the store , follow on  facebook and  Twitter

Remember  to say that you heard it first from BeautyBuzz411!

I look forward to hearing from all of you, email at beautybuzz411@gmail.com or simply leave a comment here

Much Love, Beauty Buzz 411

Tea Party with Tracy Stern

As little girls (and some little boys too), I think we can all look back and remember playing dress up and having tea parties. I also remember my grandmother’s exquisite china tea sets, hand crafted and designed with beautiful roses. Tea time held such wonderful memories, it’s probably because of that I still get such a feeling of love sipping on a warm cup.

In May of this year I was invited to the opening of New York- based Tracy Stern’s SALONTEA, which opened its first ever Canadian boutique in Vancouver (with President Sarah Ambrose). I had heard about the New York location and tea before as Oprah is fond of the brand. I wasn’t sure what the night had in store but soon found myself in my very own “Alice in Wonderland”. I took the occasion to dress up in one of my big Betsey Johnson dresses all decked out in black frilly lace! Upon arriving I was instantly mesmerized by the decor and colors that filled the room~burnt orange, hot pink and chocolate-brown. I wanted to find out more about the concept and was directed to the entrance wall. There laid out before me were seven different cut out mirror images~ The Writer, The Society Hostess, The Romantic, The Lover, The Artist, The Musician and The Fashionable Dandy. I was told to see what image grabbed my attention and that would be the tea of choice. I was of course drawn to “The Writer“, which I found out was Oprah’s favourite too (love this)! I mingled and engaged in wonderful conversations while enjoying a selection of teas, an array of delicate sandwiches, sweet treats and some sparkling champagne. My attention then turned to a display in the middle of the shop, on the shelves sat BEAUTEA products and perfumes which are made from tea. I was very curious and had to learn more.

I had the opportunity to meet Tracy Stern that night and I can honestly tell you she was beyond lovely, gracious and the perfect hostess. I was drawn to Tracy’s concept, devotion and love for the essence of beauty. We sat and chatted for quite some time and she indulged me in her world of tea. The conversation soon turned to beauty talk and we ended up sharing our favourite lipsticks, hers being Tom Ford’s Red and mine (at the time) YSL’s Coral. I explained what a huge fan of tea I was and that I loved taking baths. She mentioned that I should definitely try “The Writer” tea bath sachet and roll on tea perfumes. The perfumes were amazing, with such captivating, enticing and alluring scents. I took some of the tea sachet’s home and it was like indulging in a cup of chai tea (see a previous post here). I was in total heaven.


I picked up a copy of Tracy’s new book “tea party” and she graciously signed with a personal note. The whole night was a fabulous experience and I absolutely love the concept. It really is a perfect place to relax during an afternoon or to host a tea party. This takes tea parties to the next level. From the moment I met Tracy I knew without a doubt that she would be someone who I would like to feature on BB411 for a Beauty Q&A. So go grab your favourite cup of  tea, sit back and learn more about life and beauty with Tracy Stern.

BB411~Have you always been in love with fashion and beauty?

TS~Since I was a little girl, barbies, fashion and simple luxuries like taking bubble baths were always my world. My mother dressed me well & I have an award from kindergarten for “BEST DRESSED AWARD”! Today in a NY magazine I am still voted best dressed.

BB411~What is the story that brought you to creating “tea party” and the beauty line?

TS~”tea party” the book-I have and always have a million ideas and inspirations for creating special events, decor and gorgeous table top ideas. Plus I love people and being surrounded by friends . I love the element of surprise and fantasy and want to create that for my guests while being old-fashioned and bringing people together.

BB411~What is your earliest memory with tea and tea parties?

TS~As an only child I would have tea parties for my dolls and remember my grandmother cutting out circle tea sandwiches for me with egg salad. Very sweet and simple.

BB411~Do you use tea for your skin care?

TS~I love beauty and purity. Using tea which naturally rejuvenates the skin cells on skins first layer of epidermis. You can actually spray brewed tea to balance the ph levels. As well it actually helps sunburns too.

BB411~Where do you see your business going in the next 1, 5 & 10 years?

TS~I would like to organically approach building several tea apothecary’s for the people to understand the lifestyle component of tea

BB411~3 beauty products you carry with you always?

TS~lipgloss, chai perfume roll on, lipstick

BB411~#1 beauty product you could not live without?

TS~My pure oils

BB411~Favorite lip color?

TS~TOM FORD RED

BB411~How do you stay fit?

TS~Eating healthy, juicing, drinking tea and walking the world over

BB411~What does beauty mean to you?

TS~It’s lifestyle encompassing visual, scents, tastes & it’s a feeling to make life more beautiful and wonderful

BB411~Are you involved in any charities, are any close to your heart?

TS~I am involved in numerous charities in NYC and internationally . My latest NFTE just honored me for helping young entrepreneurs & I’m especially fond of all my charities to help children and women in need.

BB411~ If you could tell your younger self something you know now what would it be? (a lesson learned or wisdom gained?)

TS~I would tel my younger self that everything that happens is the way its meant to be. Let go and enjoy life and all opportunities that come your way.

BB411~Fun fact that your fans may not know about you?

TS~People don’t know I’m a skateboarder! I have been skating and doing tricks since high school – freestyle and old school. I love to travel internationally and now will start writing a jet set blog and national column for travel at pink memo.

Tracy Stern has created the popular SALONTEA and BEAUTEA product lines, which are sold at specialty shops and boutiques around the world and on her website. She hosts a tea salon in Manhattan and organizes bridal showers, banquets, and themed parties around the country. Stern and her products have appeared on numerous national television programs as well as in publications such as O Magazine, People, Harper’s Bazaar, and the New York Times.”

To find out more about Tracy and keep up to date with what she has going on, check out SalonTea or follow her on facebook &  Twitter

Remember  to say that you heard it first from BeautyBuzz411!

I look forward to hearing from all of you, email at beautybuzz411@gmail.com or simply leave a comment here

Much Love, Beauty Buzz 411