My Top Five Beauty Products From Whole Foods

The only department in Whole Foods that I normally skip is the beauty department. It's true. I guess I've always just felt that the Whole Foods beauty department contained products that would be of little or no interest to me due to them smelling weird or my assumption that they were ineffective. Well we Read more

10 Year Blogiversary #Giveaway: Mischo Beauty

I am super excited to kick off our 10 year blogiversary month of giveaways with Mischo Beauty! I've known Kitiya since the beginning and I am so proud of her for launching her 5-free nail lacquer brand. The Diana Nail Lacquer Set pictured above is part of her Icons Collection. We're Read more

10 Years Blogging 10 Giveaways

Dear 2005 self, launching A Girl's Gotta Spa! ® was your best idea yet. I still cannot believe that 10 years later, I'm still here. All thanks to you, our readers, both old and new. Instead of re-hashing all that I have learned in 10 years (because you can just read Read more

Why Oral Health is Important

Disclosure: Thanks to LISTERINE® I’m practicing good oral care as part of a sponsored post for Socialstars #Listerine Is your mouth on your side? Poor oral health affects aspects of your life that you may not expect. While improper oral health practices deeply affect the health of your mouth, you may Read more

Susan Posnick COLORFLO Loose Mineral Foundation and Kabuki Brush

I know that this may sound somewhat contradictory, but I love wearing makeup that I can't really feel. I like knowing that it's there on my skin, but do not want to be reminded that it's actually sitting on my skin throughout the day. This is why I love wearing Susan Read more


Susan Posnick COLORFLO Loose Mineral Foundation and Kabuki Brush

Susan Posnick COLORFLO Mineral Foundation review via @agirlsgottaspa
I know that this may sound somewhat contradictory, but I love wearing makeup that I can’t really feel.

I like knowing that it’s there on my skin, but do not want to be reminded that it’s actually sitting on my skin throughout the day. Read more

Posted on by Gail Lewis in beauty, foundation, Makeup, mineral makeup Leave a comment

Ambi Even and Clear CC+ Cream for Women of Color

Ambi CC Cream review via @agirlsgottaspa
Finding makeup that contains sunscreen, but does not leave my skin looking gray and ashy, has always been a challenge for me. I’m sure it has been a challenge for a lot of women of color, too.

I love and want to take care of my skin by making sure that I wear a broad spectrum sunscreen with an spf of at least 20, but I also hate the feel of too much product sitting on my face (especially during the warmer months.) It can be difficult to find makeup that also provides broad spectrum sun protection without making me look like I’ve put baby powder on my face. Can you relate??? Read more

Posted on by Gail Lewis in anti-aging, beauty, concealer, foundation, Makeup, makeup tips, skin care Leave a comment

CIRCA Beauty

I absolutely love getting new makeup. Trying the different colors and products, choosing a favorite, bringing it home and opening that pretty new package. It’s even better when I get something I haven’t tried before. Like makeup from CIRCA Beauty, a cruelty free makeup line that’s affordable, long wearing, trendy, and appeals to different skin tones. And oh yeah, the Creative Director just happens to be Eva Mendez.

Circa beauty foundation review via @agirlsgottaspa

Left: BB Cream in 03 Medium. Right: Liquid Foundation in 07.

I usually cannot find foundations or a BB cream that doesn’t end up being too dark or makes my skin looks ashy. This makeup line is simply amazing! My skin tone would be considered medium brown with yellow undertones and both the Color Balance BB Cream (03 Medium) and Color Balance Liquid Foundation (07) matched my skin without being chalky. My skin looked smooth and radiant! Read more

Posted on by Mandy Lewis in beauty, eye shadow, eyeliner, foundation, lip gloss, lipstick, Makeup Leave a comment

IT Cosmetics Cushion Compact Review

@itscosmetics CC+ Veil Beauty Fluid Cushion Compact review via @agirlsgottaspa

Last spring and summer while in Southeast Asia, I became intrigued by cushion compacts. Cushion compacts, like the BB cream, are the beauty brainchild of Korea…I really would like to go on a beauty passage through Korea. They seemed to be everywhere and I made mental note to myself to grab a couple before heading back to the states.  Well sun, sand and sea took priority over everything else and on my last day there I was preoccupied with trying to figure out how to fit the gazillionth sarong into my suitcase and forgot all about getting my hands on a cushion compact.  I had yet another opportunity on the plane to purchase one duty free, but the color swatch wasn’t much help so decided to pass.

Well since then I have been obsessed with finding them, I’ve noticed them slowly making an appearance here in the US in the last few months.  I was FINALLY able to get my hands on a cushion compact from IT Cosmetics and I am so utterly in love and obsessed! Read more

Posted on by Gail Lewis in anti-aging, beauty, foundation, Makeup 1 Comment

bareMinerals bareSkin Foundation Review

@bareminerals bareSkin Pure Brightening Serum Foundation #review #beauty #makeup

The bareMinerals bareSkin Pure Brightening Serum Foundation appears to be a love it or hate it type of product. I’ve been using it as my only foundation for a few months now and there are some definite pros and cons. But are the cons enough to make me ditch it? I’m undecided until I see how it functions when my skin changes due to the elements of winter.

In total transparency, I have never used a foundation from bareMinerals before, so I can’t really compare this to the coverage their other foundations provide. However, since it is a liquid foundation, I’ve used plenty of those like LORAC’s POREfection Foundation and Urban Decay’s Naked Skin Foundation, so I know what I’m looking for in comparison. Read more

Posted on by Shannon Smyth in beauty, foundation, Makeup, makeup tips 6 Comments

Bloggers’ Must Have Beauty Products When Traveling

Bloggers' Must-Have #Beauty Products While Traveling

Believe it or not, a blogger’s makeup bag is not always overflowing with products when we travel. Most of us have a handful of products we are loyal to simply because they get the job done while home or away.

I recently spent some time in Atlantic City and asked fellow bloggers Kelly Augustine from and Lyuba from what their must have beauty products were while traveling. Watch the video to hear about our favorite beauty products and then find the links to all of them below: Read more

Posted on by Shannon Smyth in anti-aging, bath and body, beauty, blush, bronzer, eyeliner, foundation, Hair Care, lip balm, lip gloss, lipstick, Makeup, mascara, mineral makeup, Primer, skin care Leave a comment

Michelle Williams Say Yes Makeup by DeeDee Kelly

Michelle Williams Say Yes Video Makeup. Details from her makeup artist, DeeDee Kelly! #makeup #Makeuptips

Michelle Williams is back with her new album, Journey to Freedom (now available for pre-order.) Good Morning America dubbed it as a “personal journey,” however my personal opinion is that it is more of a spiritual journey. On the debut track, Say Yes, Queen Bey and Kelly Rowland are featured and I am so stoked for a Christian song to go mainstream.

Michelle looks AMAZING and that meant I needed all the details on what makeup was used for the video as well as the look the makeup artist wanted Michelle to evoke. Thanks to the Indian Tyler’s Beyond the Vanity show on LA Talk Live, I discovered celebrity makeup artist DeeDee Kelly who did Michelle’s makeup for the LA portion of the video filming. Read more

Posted on by Shannon Smyth in beauty, beauty interview, blush, bronzer, Celebrity Beauty, eye shadow, eyeliner, foundation, highlighter, lipstick, Makeup, makeup tips, mascara, mineral makeup 3 Comments

Spring Beauty Essentials Under $150

Spring Essentials Kit - 7 beauty products to bring you back to life! #beauty #rmnspringessentials

Keeping up with the season’s best beauty trends can be fun…but costly! (I much prefer the fun part over the expense of it all.) There’s also that Winter to Spring transition that requires a vast array of different products based on your individual needs – for example, my hair tends to lack shine this time of year and my skin looks lackluster (much like the landscape before the first flowers bloom.)

So how can you stay up to par with the Spring beauty essentials while keeping your bank account in check? Know when to spend and know when to splurge – and also know when to use coupon codes!

90% of my shopping is done online and beauty products are no exception. I first search my inbox to see if any of my favorite beauty retailers are having a sale or offering a discount. Next I head to and type in the retailer I’m looking to purchase from. RetailMeNot will list discounts and sales for your favorite retailers – many times codes you can use in addition to the ones the retailers sent you! This is also a great way to weigh whether you should shop Sephora, Ulta, or your favorite department store retailer by doing a quick scan of any discount offerings. If you’re not one to shop online for cosmetics, no worries, RetailMeNot also has printable coupon codes.

When the weather begins to warm up one of the things that require a shake up is my skin care. I live in the mountains where the air is drier, as is my home from my wood stove. So Autumn through Winter my skin is like a nomad lost in the desert in search of something to quench its thirst. This is when I’m using heavier creams and serums targeted to dry skin. Oftentimes, no matter how much moisturizing I do, my skin remains parched and flakey. My hair seems to have the same issues as well. To brighten up for Spring, new skin care, hair care and cosmetics are in order!

As I move into Spring, here are my essentials – totaling under $150! Read more

Posted on by Shannon Smyth in anti-aging, beauty, eye shadow, foundation, Hair Care, Makeup, Nail Polish, Primer, Spring Beauty 1 Comment

LORAC POREfection Foundation Review

Lorac POREfection Foundation #Review #makeup

I’ll be honest, I’ve stayed away from liquid foundation for a long time.

Typically combination skin doesn’t play nice with this type of foundation. From the oily t-zone to the drier patches towards the outer part of my face, I’ve always felt that liquid foundation basically put a magnifying glass on these problem areas. However, I also now have to combat aging skin and the powder foundations I was using have begun to make wrinkles and fine lines more pronounced. Not fun! Read more

Posted on by Shannon Smyth in anti-aging, beauty, foundation, Makeup 5 Comments

Easy Makeup Look Step by Step

Step by Step Makeup Tutorial

Step 1: Apply primer over entire eyelid and up to brow line.
Step 2: Apply jane.’s Ray of Light to lid.
Step 3: Apply mark.’s Fab 5 green to entire crease.
Step 4: Moisten brush dab in and then on Urban Decay’s Zodiac over the green crease line (this adds intense sparkle & shimmer), blend upward then outward on outer corner of eyelid towards brow bone. Read more

Posted on by Courtney Smith RN BSN in beauty, blush, eye shadow, foundation, lip gloss, Makeup, makeup tips, mascara, Primer 1 Comment