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The Big Chop

26 Apr

Haircut Appointment 2013

At this point in time it’s no secret, I chopped off all my hair!  It happened last Wednesday at Adelaide Salon here in Williamsburg, Brooklyn.  It’s not that often I make a drastic hair length change like this, so to commemorate the event, photographer Joel Stigliano tagged along to document it.

My long time stylist Casey (who also did my dip-dye) did the honors.  I wanted to donate the hair to Locks of Love, and I had so much hair it resulted in two ponytails we chopped off.  All in all I think it was about 10 inches we took off.

Haircut Appointment 2013

Haircut Appointment 2013

Haircut Appointment 2013

The style I wanted was an inverted bob, which is longer in the front than it is in the back.  Casey took her time really perfecting the shape and when it was done, it was perfect!  Very flattering to my jaw line.

Also, for anyone wondering, the best way to cut curly hair is when it’s dry so you can see the natural curl pattern.  That’s why Casey’s cutting my hair prior to us washing it.

Haircut Appointment 2013

Haircut Appointment 2013

Haircut Appointment 2013

Haircut Appointment 2013

Haircut Appointment 2013

During my entire appointment, we had this adorable guy watching us.  Can you believe he’s just a puppy?!  Probably the most well-behaved puppy I’ve ever encountered.

Haircut Appointment 2013

Haircut Appointment 2013

Haircut Appointment 2013

Once my bob was pretty well-shaped, it was then time for color.  I decided I wanted to dye my hair back to my natural brunette.  While I loved the red, it was too high maintenance for me.  Adelaide Salon carries Organic Color Systems which is a vegan line, so I was all set!

Haircut Appointment 2013

Haircut Appointment 2013

Haircut Appointment 2013

After the dye set it was then time to wash, set and dry the curls.

I often get a lot of questions from readers on how I style my hair, so stay tuned next week as Casey walks us through a curly hair styling tutorial!

PHOTOGRAPHY  BY // Joel Stigliano


Pinning / Curly Bobs

2 Apr

It seems just about every single year once it gets nice out, I have this urge to chop off all of my hair. By the end of winter, I’m totally over having to blow-dry my hair for close to 30 minutes because I have so much of it. While I love my current really long length, it’s now becoming impracticable for me to keep up with. I also think it’s kind of boring. I usually like a little edge to my haircuts and the current one just isn’t doing it for me anymore. Walking the streets of NYC there are tons of girls with long loose curls like mine.

When I did my last big chop back in 2009, the shorter curls were ridiculously easy for me to manage. It was literally wash and go. I’d like to get back to that for this summer considering how active I’ve been lately.

Last year at this time I was totally macking on Keri Hilson’s bob below, but as of recent I also love the soft, inverted bob that Marion Cotillard wears.  So I’m kind of undecided what version I want to do, or how short I want to go yet (at or below the chin).  I also haven’t decided yet if I want to stay a red head, dye it back to my natural brunette, or even maybe an ombre brunette.  All I know is I want all my hair gone and for my hair routine to only take 10 minutes again.

Here’s some of my favorite inspiration images I’ve been pinning lately to try to come up with some ideas of what to do.  My next hair appointment is in less than two weeks, so I better hurry up and make up my mind!

So what do you think?  Should I cut it all off?  Dye it?  Both?  I’d love to hear your suggestions!

Vegan Versions / Veg Friendly Hair Dye

31 Oct

This post originally appeared last week on my column Vegan Vogue I write for I Eat Grass. If you haven’t stopped by I Eat Grass yet, be sure to do so!

Dip Dye Diva
The results of my recent dip dye

I have this thing where around every three months I feel compelled to change my hair in some manner. Usually it’s as simple as getting bangs, or growing the bangs out and styling them differently. Other times it’s chopping it all off into a drastically different style.

This time around, I was really happy with my overall hair cut and length, but was still wanting a change. For years I’ve wanted to dip dye my ends, so I figured now was as good a time as ever. Hair dye is a great way to freshen up your look and make people take notice.  So I made an appointment with my long time stylist and rolled with it!
Luckily my local salon’s color was vegan friendly.  If you are in the market for a new hair color, check out these salon and at home hair color brands that are all cruelty-free.

Organics Color Systems

Organic Color Systems is the brand used to do my dip dye (see photo above), which is only available in salons.  It’s 100% ammonia free, and also certified vegan and cruelty free by PETA.  Organic Color Systems also boasts their products cover 100% of greys and their ingredients used are organic.

When going to the salon to get my dip dye done, I was expecting my stylist to have to bleach my hair, and then color over the bleached areas since my hair is so dark.  To my surprise, the Organic Color Systems color worked straight on my dark hair and still produced intense results.  To find a salon that carries Organics Color Systems near you, click here.


Aloxxi is another salon only hair dye brand who I had the pleasure of attending an event for during New York Fashion week this past September.  They’re listed on PETA’s list of companies that do not test on animals, and all their products boast the bunny logo.

Aloxxi generously gifted me with their suite of color safe, hair styling products which I’ve been using since I had my color done and they work very well.  In particular their color rich treatment masque makes my curls super soft and intensely conditions in only 3 minutes.

To find a salon that uses Aloxxi color by you, you can click here.

Manic Panic

If mainstream hair color isn’t your thing, try at home color with Manic Panic.  Manic Panic has been known for their crazy, bright, intense colors since the 1970’s, and  guarantees all their products are vegan.  Their colors are also semi-permanent, which makes it really easy to try a new look without being stressed about it being a long-term commitment.


Looking for a veg- friendly alternative to your standard “box” color, check out Herbatint.  Herbatint offers ammonia and paraben free permanent hair color products that are easy to apply at home.  They’re also certified vegan and cruelty-free.

Do you like to change-up your hair color and use a brand I didn’t mention here?  Please share what dye you use in the comments!

Dip Dye Diva

8 Oct

Dip Dye Diva

Here’s the result of my hair appointment on Friday. I decided to go with the dip-dye in red. I’m honestly kind of shocked I actually went as bright as I did, and love it! I can’t believe I waited this long to finally do it.

Now I’m all excited to clean out my closet and do some shopping for some new clothes to compliment the new ‘do.

Stay tuned tomorrow for some more photos from this shoot.

Dip Dye Diva

Dip Dye Diva

Edit: For anyone interested, the dye used for my hair was Organic Color Systems and is 100% vegan and cruelty free.  Believe it or not, the color is that bright without bleaching.  It’s only available in salons.  I highly recommend their brand, and no I’m not being paid to say that.  I had my color done by my long time stylist Casey, at Adelaide Salon in Williamsburg, Brooklyn.

Pinning \ Hair Change Ideas

5 Oct

Happy Friday! This past week has been another whirlwind one for me. I had a big year and a half long project finish up at work that launched Tuesday, and I had to put in extra hours to work out all the kinks. Yuck.  I also started Crossfit, as well as celebrated my 4th wedding anniversary with Jim.  I’m looking forward to the weekend and getting to kick back a bit and slow down.

I have a haircut appointment tonight, so I’ve been pinning some ideas on how to change it up. I know I’m keeping it long, but love the idea of adding even more curly layers, and maybe even dip-dying the ends (which I’ve been thinking about doing forever). Whatever I decide, it’ll be a surprise!

Are you on Pinterest? I’m an addict. Check out my pins and follow me here.

Dex New York Makeup Lesson

27 Aug

Dex NY

A few months ago, my friend Tracy talked me into buying a Groupon with her to get a makeup lesson. I had a while back made a promise to myself to stop buying Groupons because I never use them. I had a change of heart for this specific one for a few reasons.

  1. I’m an idiot when it comes to makeup. Seriously, the lesson would help.
  2. After looking at the company offering the Groupon’s website, Dex New York, I learned not only are their products not tested on animals (they have the bunny logo!), but all their products were vegan as well.

We made our appointment for a few weeks later and went together.

Dex is located in the Upper East Side of Manhattan, and isn’t so much a makeup store, but a makeup studio. They train makeup artists in their craft and they specialize in event and red carpet makeup. Though they are a studio, they sell all their products, which are mineral based, via their website.

Upon arriving, we were offered some refreshments and then asked to remove our makeup to get ready for the lesson.

Dex NY

Dex NY

Throughout the lesson we were given a face chart to complete so we would have all the information we learned to bring home with us and recreate. Step by step, as we went through the process our instructor would do one side of our face, with us replicating it on the other side. We’d then fill out the chart with the step, product used and brush used prior to moving onto the next step.

Dex NY

Dex NY

Dex NY

Dex NY

Our makeup artist, Rebecca, did a fantastic job not only explaining why she was choosing the products she was for us, but also why she was applying them the way she was. She did an analysis of our bone structure and our eye shape, and from there explained the best ways to apply makeup to bring those features out.

Dex NY

Dex NY

For my lesson, I had asked to learn how to best pull off a bright lip, which is something I’m pretty horrible at. I also wanted to learn a good day to night smokey eye look. Rebecca reviewed both with me.

Tracy asked for a lesson on camera ready makeup.  She does a bit of television work for her personal training business and wanted to learn how to apply makeup that showed up well on camera.  It was interesting to sit in and listen to her lesson being a lot of the tips Rebecca offered for camera ready were not necessarily things I would have thought of myself.  I picked up several tips which have since resulted in better photos for myself as well.

Dex NY

Dex NY

Here’s my finished result.

I wound up treating myself to an early birthday present and buying most of the products Rebecca recommended for me. I loved they were all vegan, and featured color names specific to New York (like Montauk and Wall Street Onyx). Their packaging is also very eco-friendly. All colors come in steel tins which snap in and out of a pallet. I love the pallet because you have all your makeup for your entire look in one slim pallet which easily fits in a purse or clutch. Plus, when you run out of something you don’t have to replace the entire pallet, just snap out the tin you’re out of and replace it.

Another reason I love it, the products do what they advertise.  My makeup has looked amazing in photographs lately, even when I do my makeup all by myself.  Can’t hate that.

Have you ever taken a makeup lesson? I’d love to hear your experience.

Time for a Change

13 Feb

I want this haircut!  Source:

Man, I’ve been BUSY lately.  Though work has finally calmed down for me a bit, my weekends have been filled with social obligations and lots of necessary chores around the house.  What little free time I’ve had has been spent either with Jim or at the gym.

Been so crunched for time lately, one thing that’s been really annoying me is my hair.  While I love my curls, at this point in time they’ve gotten so long my hair takes absolutely forever to dry.  I’m spending close to 30 minutes drying it again, which I hate.  Plus my curls aren’t keeping as frizz free as they used to when they were shorter.  I’m also kind of over my bangs, which is good timing being blunt cut bangs over the summer in NYC spells disaster so now’s a good time as any to start growing them out again.

Krystal from This Time Tomorrow

Kelly the Glamourai

Lately I’ve been loving the soft, curly bobs on a lot of the style bloggers I follow.  Especially Krystal’s new haircut from This Time Tomorrow as well as Kelly the Glamorai‘s bob.  Seeing these styles made me want to start doing some internet searching for inspiration, and I came across Keri Hilson’s crazy cool curly bob that when styled naturally is super edgy, but could also be blown out for a slightly softer look.  I’m loving the versatility of it.

So I think I’ve pretty much made up my mind that come April (which is my next haircut appointment) my hair will be chopped off.  Now it’s just finalizing the style.  While I’m pretty much sold on the Hilson style, I’m still open for suggestions so send them my way!  I’m also debating maybe coloring my hair as well.  I’m super excited to make this change because in April I’m finally going on a much-needed vacation to Mexico and it’ll be fun to rock a new look while there.

Solving Confidence Idiocracy

11 Nov

Makeup trial at Sephora

I was looking some email newsletters this morning and came across the most recent GOOP one where Gwyneth Paltrow talks about how she’s basically an idiot when it comes to makeup.  Reading this reminded me that OMG, I totally used to be one too!  In fact, it was a real confidence issue for me.  I’d get anxious anytime I’d be in a makeup store that I’d chose the wrong color and look like a clown.  Or that I’d apply it wrong.  I actually still am a klutz with makeup.  Difference is I took some time earlier this year to solve the issue and regain my makeup application confidence.

Basically all I did was I realized the value of having someone who really knows what they’re doing show me how to do it.  I needed step by step instructions.  Hell, this can apply to any sort of thing you ‘re lacking expertise or confidence in. For example, if you’re a crappy cook, hire a personal chef to teach you how to make 5-7 really easy meals that you can rotate and repeat.  It’ll cost you some money upfront, but think of what you’d save (and the weight you’d lose!) in the long run not ordering out or relying on pre-made, unhealthy food.  If you’re style challenged, another example could be hiring a stylist to go through your closet and teaching you how to wear what you already have, and how to shop for what’s most flattering for your body type.  Costs some cash, but you’ll save in the long run by not buying clothes that don’t fit properly and by getting more use out of what you already have.  Plus you’ll look awesome which will boost your confidence and more.

So what one of my fellow make-up challenged friends and I did was we made an appointment at Sephora to sit with one of their consultants.  We gave her a list of what we were trying to accomplish, and then took her advice.  You can do this with just about any sort of beauty boutique, including department stores.  Sephora in particular has a $100 purchase minimum, but when you consider the quality of the products and how long they last, it was well worth the investment.

My list for my consultant was:

  • Items had to be vegan/cruelty free
  • Organic was a plus
  • It had to be oil free.  My skin breaks out easily.
  • I need everyday makeup.  If I was going to invest this much, I needed it to be stuff I would wear daily.
  • I also needed an evening “look” that flattered my face, and was easy to transition to from my day look.

The result of my consultation was the photo above (the sample evening look).  Though I did end up spending a tad bit more than the $100 minimum, I purchased all these items nine months ago and I still have more than half the product left.  Plus I got exactly what I wanted (i.e. vegan),  it’s super versatile, I was taught exactly how to apply it, and I now have the tools needed to create a variety of looks without having to think about it.  Makeup problem solved.  And to think to date it only cost me around $10 a month when you take what I spent and divide it among all the months I’ve been using the products, makes it well worth the investment.  Hell, I wasted way more money monthly on drug store makeup that the colors looked horrible on me or didn’t match and I had to replace it. Considering how well this experiment worked for me, I think what I’ll probably wind up doing is making an appointment once a year to be sure my look is relatively current.

What’s the one thing you find yourself not confident about and what will you do to gain that confidence back?

Checking In

3 Nov


Hola! Just checking in quick. It’s been a busy week or so for me with work and whatevs. So here’s the update.

  • I just got back from a business trip to Denver.  It was a really productive trip, but I’m glad to be back.  Denver’s beautiful but I always get horrible altitude sickness while there as well as homesick for NYC.  I have to go back again in December for another meeting, as well as to Vegas in January for CES so it looks like I’m back on the road a bit again the next few months.
  • I don’t think I mentioned it, but I changed my hair again.  I love it!  I went ahead and got bangs again and have been wearing my hair more wavy than curly.  I really love the change.  Here I am with the new hair and a pair of non-prescription nerdy hipster glasses I picked up while shopping recently just for kicks.

My Nerd-tastic Glasses

  • I was totes pissed my business trip required me to travel on Halloween. The only thing that made me more pissed off was this past Saturday (the unofficial Halloween party day) it snowed in NYC! We never get snow this early! I was so excited for Halloween this year and even got my costume early, which I never do. At least I opted to create my own costume from regular clothing this year so I can re-wear all the stuff, plus I have the costume issue solved for next year.

F you Halloween Weekend Snowstorm!

How’s everyone else’s week been going?  Any big plans for the weekend?  Besides sleeping and probably  having to work, I’m planning on attending the Intermix Fur Protest on Saturday, so if you’re going to be there be sure to say hi!

Dip Dye

16 Aug

I’ve been wanting to refresh my hairstyle lately every time I get my hair cut, which is usually every three months or so. I have a haircut appointment coming up the end of August, and have been racking my brain on how to change things up a bit. I really like my current length and overall cut, so I’m thinking I’ll go with a color change.

I love the ombré I had done for this summer, though I don’t think it’s fall/winter appropriate. This past weekend I came across some images of dip dying on Pintrest and love it! Since high school I’ve always wanted to dye my hair bright red ala Rhianna, but never had the guts to do it.  So instead I’m seriously debating doing some bright red dip dye to my already ombréd ends.  Best part is it’s semi-permanent so even if I hate it, it will only last a few weeks anyway.

What are your thoughts on dip dye? Do you love it or hate it?