Beauty

First things first, I have quite the history when it comes to having fake nails. I got my first acrylic set when I was 12 years old because I thought the french manicure was so cool. You know what I’m talking about! I loved the long square shaped french was just so chic. LOL!

I would continue to get them done occasionally, but took several year breaks until a few years ago, when I was just sick of my natural nails constantly breaking. So 3 years ago, I jumped back on the acrylic train and didn’t stop until recently.

The #1 reason that I wanted to stop getting acrylics was actually because I also topped them with gel polish, which meant that I was putting my hands under UV light every other week. I know that nail techs will tell you that there is no risk, but there’s just no way around it. UV light is no bueno. I also wanted a more natural solution to my thin, brittle nail situation.

Enter dip powder. OH-EM-GEE, guys, this is life changing. Unlike Acrylic, manicure dip does not make use of any special chemicals to help it harden. And compared to Gel manicures, it does not require the special UV rays necessary for curing. {Source}

Dip powder application involves applying a base and then dipping them in powder. The powder adds the colors, and they come in different colors and shines. {Source}.

I was nervous that after removing my acrylics, which was a NIGHTMARE by the way (it took me 6 hours), that my nails would break even with the dip powder. Nope. It’s been 3 months since I’ve been getting them done, and my nails have remained strong and they have even grown out quite a bit. There are no “tips” on my nails, I just have the dip powder laid over my natural nails and they are thriving.

I. KEEP UP WITH NAIL APPOINTMENTS

When I got acrylics, I stuck with the same person because she GOT me. She always got my shape just right, and knew which colors I’d like. I was so sad to leave her because she doesn’t do dip manicures, but I have found someone at a new salon that does a great job. I recommend going every other week and sticking with the same person. This may require trial and error, but once you find the right person, keep them!

2. ALL ABOUT THE POWDER DIPS

We talked about dip before, but it really is the best alternative to gel and acrylics because it’s natural – the powder is fortified with vitamin E and calcium. It’s a win win. No damage, no chipping, no UV light…I mean, what could be better?!

3. USE CUTICLE OIL

If you’re trying to repair damaged nails or grow your nails longer, using a vitamin E oil on your cuticles helps a lot. It also helps keep your hands looking hydrated which is a bonus. I love this one from Jason.

Calling all BLONDES!

We need to talk about getting rid of BRASS. Getting icy. You know, these things that only us blondes understand. Or, if you are a brunette with balayage or blonde hi-lights, you get it too.

I like things COOL when it comes to my hair. Yes, I do currently have some warmer pieces in my hair, but the overall shade is cool. I really can’t stand brass or warmth.

Today I’m going to share my top 3 ANTI-BRASS tips with you.

1.) Find a colorist who is experienced with blonding. Brassy hair can usually be avoided by going to the right colorist. My biggest tip when finding a colorist is to look at their work. Instagram is such a great tool for this purpose.

Then, interview them. Ask the important questions. Another tip: take some photos with you when chatting with your colorist and ask if your inspiration is attainable.

If you are in the Bay Area and want to be blonde, you need Noelle at Ash Salon in your life. She is hands down the best. You can take it from me, the girl who has gone to 7+ colorists over the last 10 years before meeting the hair QUEEN.

2.) TWO WORDS: Purple shampoo. It’s an absolute MUST if you are blonde. Why? Take a look at the color wheel. The opposite of yellow/brass is purple. There are so many purple shampoos out there, but my 2 favorites are Pravana’s The Perfect Blonde and Unite’s BLONDA. I’ve narrowed these two down after being a human guinnea pig with lots of others. Both of these shampoos are sulfate-free, VERY purple (AKA effective), and are gentle on the hair. I use both on my extensions as well.

Pro tip: To really ice things up, you can do a toning session yourself with purple shampoo. Here’s what you do: get your hair wet in the shower and then apply your purple shampoo. Wrap your hair in a bun, on top of your head, then wrap with a dark towel (otherwise you may stain your towel purple), and leave it on for 25 minutes. Wash your hair like you normally would, and voila! You will have icy, sexy, cool blonde hair!

I do this about once a month, and in between I wash with purple shampoo and leave on for about 3 minutes.

3.) Avoid using tinted oils on your hair. Fun story: I had been using Moroccan Oil on my hair, and it was turning so, so brassy. It took me awhile to figure out that tinted oils such as this one can tint your hair!

Enter Ouai Hair Oil. Not only does is smell SO good, it is not tinted and my blonde hair stays bright and icy.

Anyone else have blonde hair tips? Spill.

Hope you have a fabulous weekend,

xo Lynn

I feel like we need to talk more about hair. I’ve always been he girl who would rather have her hair styled than have makeup on. GOOD hair can just make you feel some kind of way, don’t you think?

With the exception of one big chop about 3 years ago (remember the super blunt cut lob trend?) I have always loved BIG and LONG hair. In high school, someone asked me if I was from Texas because my hair was “so big” – LOL!

Unfortunately after the big chop, my hair has not been able to catch up to the length it was before. It is close, though!

Anyway, late last year I started thinking about getting hair extensions to add volume and length, especially in preparation for my wedding. I knew I wanted MERMAID HAIR for my wedding day. The stars totally aligned because I connected with Erica Santos, the owner of Revival Studio late last year, and we chatted about Natural Beaded Row Hair Extensions — Erica’s specialty.

Before we chat further, here is a bit more info: Natural Beaded Rows™ Hair Extensions are an exclusive hair extension method created by Danielle K. White of DKW Styling. The extensions are custom colored to match your natural hair color, creating ensuring a seamless blend. The hair extensions are placed in rows in the hair by creating a “track” with an exclusive bead and string technique. Wefts are then placed on the track and sewn in. The extensions are then cut and blended to create a natural and beautiful look!

Amazing, right?

From the moment I walked into Erica’s salon, I felt so excited and so at home. Revival Studio is just so chic and has such a friendly vibe. Erica and Angela, her partner in crime, and I just had the best time as they worked their magic on my hair. And I mean MAGIC.

Erica had done other extension methods in the past, but wanted to get trained on the Natural Beaded Rows method a few years ago, so she flew out to Laguna Beach, California, where the NBR headquarters resides, to get trained in this new method of healthy hair extensions that don’t damage your natural hair. Erica became friends with Danielle of DKW Styling, who invented the method and teaches it to select students each year. 

Long story short, Erica has trained extensively on the NBR method of hair extensions and is one of the few certified stylists in the East Bay Area to do the method. She is pure amazing.

The whole process took about 3 hours and I was seriously BLOWN AWAY by how well my hair turned out. From the custom color to the texture of the hair…it’s seriously perfect.

The length of the extensions I got are 22 inch extensions and I just love the length. If you love the DRAMA like me, you will LOVE the 22 inch extensions. However: NBR extensions come in a variety of different lengths and are all custom cut to suit your needs.

I was honestly a little worried about my big Jew ‘fro taking on a life of its own and the extensions being a completely different texture, but NOPE. Everything blends absolutely seamlessly and no one knows I have extensions.

To see the installation process and the complete before and after, watch my YouTube video as Erica and Angela explain the process and get a peek at how the extensions are installed:

At my wedding, many of my family members commented on my hair and said, “OMG! Your hair grew so long!”…and then I told them I was wearing NBR’s.

I’ve now had the extensions in for about four weeks and I can say that I’m still just as obsessed with them as I was the first time I saw myself in the mirror. They have made me feel so much more like ‘me’, more glam, more sexy, and the best part is that they do not harm my natural hair.

Erica and Angela couldn’t have been more generous or fun to talk to and I had such a great time hanging out with them for a few hours.  If you are interested in booking a consult with Erica, please fill out her form on her website or reach out to her on Instagram at @revivalstudio_

xo,

Lynn

Hair Podcast

Noelle Goodrich is an amazing artist, and a total boss.

I met Noelle about 4 years ago when I was having a hair crisis, and after reading her reviews, I knew I’d be in good hands to have my banana yellow blonde hair fixed.

Yep, BANANA YELLOW. My sister told me after seeing me before Noelle that I looked like a banana. LOL! But that is a story for a different day.

Noelle has been my go-to hair gal for years, and she has a loyal following of women who trust her with their hair because she is incredibly talented at her craft. Not only is the talented when it comes to hair, but she’s also a savvy businesswoman who just opened her own chic and cozy salon, ash. in Lafayette, CA.

Noelle was the very first guest that I interviewed on the All Gussied Up podcast, where she talked about her favorite hair products, what’s trending with hair right now, how to go blonde if you’re a brunette, high-vibe energy, and a lot more. Make sure you give it a listen — there are so many amazing nuggets in there!

+ Listen here

+ Follow Noelle on Instagram @hairbynoellegoodrich

+ Subscribe to the podcast

Target is really the death of me.

I go in there for toilet paper and come out with a new lipstick, some new home decor, and a Kombucha. Fellow Target lovers, we all know that roaming the aisles is just so fun, kind of like being a kid in a candy store.

When it comes to makeup products, anything that I use really has to be amazing, and because of that, I shop smart. And not everything that I use has to be from the department store or super luxury. And there are some AMAZING makeup products available at the drugstore.

Today while I was looking at my makeup and selecting my holy grail drugstore makeup products to share, I wasn’t intending on them all being from NYX. That just goes to show ya how phenomenal the brand is.

So, here are my faves:

NYX Shimmer Down Pigment in Platinum

 This is hands down the BEST inner eye shadow ever. What do I mean? Pop this shadow on the inner corners of your eyes and they will really pop. I wear this shadow almost daily because it really makes me look awake with just one other eyeshadow, which I’ll get to in a sec.

NYX HD Studio Photogenic Concealer in Porcelain

I learned this trick from the makeup master, Jaclyn Hill, and boy does it make a big difference. After you’ve applied your foundation and concealer, add a LIGHTER concealer just to the apples of your cheeks to make them look like they are coming forward. Don’t believe me? Put a light concealer on one cheek and you be the judge of the difference. It’s amazing really. I love this concealer just for this purpose.

NYX Soft Matte Lip Cream in Istanbul

 This liquid lipstick is the best drugstore version ever. I’m usually not a fan of liquid lipsticks because they can be drying on your lips, but this one is not. My tip with liquid lipstick: wear it when you’re at a party or out to dinner because it does not transfer onto your cup or napkin, plus your lips will look fresh the whole time.

NYX Eyeshadow

Using a muave-y color eyeshadow is so flattering! It really adds to that awake look. I only use this eyeshadow in my crease, and a buff it outward towards my temples to elongate the look of my eyes. It’s a barely there kind of eyeshadow, and paired with the bright platinum color on the inner corners, you’re good to go.

Ok, your turn. Tell me your drugstore faves!

xo, Lynn