Target the 5 Signs of Aging #ad

Disclosure: Thanks to RoC® MULTI CORREXION® 5 in 1 Chest, Neck and Face Cream, I’m targeting the 5 signs of aging as part of a sponsored post for Socialstars #WomenWhoRoC While the Summer wreaks havoc on my skin by aging it with damaging UV rays, the Winter is equally as Read more

Probiotic Skin Care: Miracle Ingredient or Marketing Hype?

As a consumer, my hope is that when a product comes to market, it delivers information that is true. I mean, we're all so busy, who has the time to fact check everything? For a while, we all believed the mascara commercials and ads where the spokesperson/model had the most Read more

Tips for Gray Hair #GrayAway

I hate to break it to you, but eventually gray hair will rule your mane. Chances are, if you are reading this article, you already know this to be true. When we go gray, and how much, is a mix of genetics and lifestyle. So while you may not be Read more

Charcoal Skin Care Products for Acne Prone Skin

Do you have oily or combination skin? You may want to consider incorporating charcoal into your skin care regimen. Sure, charcoal is totally on trend right now and may seem like a fad, but it's for good reason. Charcoal absorbs oil and draws out toxins and bacteria from the skin. Those Read more

Voluminous Beach Wave Hair

Little did I know when growing up on the beaches of Rhode Island, that the wavy hair that came naturally among the sand and surf, would be a hairstyle I would try so hard to achieve as an adult. While my hair does have a slight natural wave to it, Read more


Back to College with Schick® #Sponsored

Back to college with @quattroforwomen via @agirlsgottaspa #sponsored

As I’m about to have a baby in a week, I can’t help but think about how, two years from now, we’ll be making another transition with our family – my oldest will be going to college. It’s hard to believe that while I’ll still be changing diapers with one child, I’ll be sending off another into the world.

It reminds me of this time 23 years ago, I was preparing to start college life. Seems like a lifetime ago and I’m sure my kids would chime in that it was “back in the olden days.” But what held true back then, still holds true now. Confidence is everything when beginning a new venture. Would you agree? Read more

Posted on by Shannon Smyth in beauty, men's grooming, men's shaving, Self-Care, skin care Leave a comment

Movember with method

Movember with method. Prostate cancer awareness

 Top Row: Connor and Duncan; Bottom Row: Brody and Gavin

All of us have a man in our lives that could fall victim to prostate cancer. Our dads, our sons, our husbands, boyfriends, brothers, friends, co-workers… During the summer my cousin was diagnosed with testicular cancer, he is in his mid-twenties, proving that cancer doesn’t discern by age.

method sent us their Designed for Good gel hand wash (which we always need plenty of in this house) complete with a mustache design and stickers. While the stickers were meant to be placed on the bottle, I felt it would be a good way to showcase my son’s personalities if they wore them and posed. They had fun and it gave me the opportunity to talk to them about the importance of seeing the doctor and preventative care (something I feel that most men ignore–so why not raise boys that understand the value from an early age?) Read more

Posted on by Shannon Smyth in beauty, men's skin care 1 Comment

Atmysphere Fragrance for Men Review

I love when my boyfriend wears cologne and thankfully he always wears scents that are pleasing to the senses. (Unlike memories of high school and the boys who would literally bathe themselves in cologne. Sometimes I wondered if they would douse themselves in it in lieu of a shower. But I digress…)

I don’t typically review men’s fragrance or grooming products here anymore, however I couldn’t pass up Atmysphere, which promises that it would create an intimate romantic atmosphere via the fragrance. It sounded much like those perfumes that claimed to have pheromones in them that would create attraction, however their website is very clear that there are no pheromones in this men’s fragrance. Curious, I informed my boyfriend that he was going to be a test subject. I’m sure he wouldn’t mind an intimate romantic atmosphere anyway…I mean what guy passes that up?  Read more

Posted on by Shannon Smyth in beauty, men's grooming, perfume Leave a comment

POWDERWorks Facial Exfoliant Review

From chemical exfoliants to physical exfoliants, I’m always looking for something new when it comes to effective, results-driven skin care.

Trying so many different types of skin care exfoliants comes with a price though, some are scrubs or chemicals that irritate my skin, even though I definitely do not consider my skin sensitive. Now that my oldest son is a teenager and often perusing my products for something to use on his own skin, I wanted to find something that would work for both of us. A newer skin care company called POWDERWorks reached out to me with a unique powder exfoliant that looked like the perfect fit.  Read more

Posted on by Shannon Smyth in acne, anti-aging, beauty, men's grooming, men's skin care, skin care Leave a comment

Miracle Clay Review

I’ve long been a fan of clay masks. Having combination skin, it typically is one of the best ways to absorb the excess oil and balances my skin back out. A newer beauty company, Miracle Clay, recently contacted me about a few products from their line based on clay (obviously.) I tried out their Ancient Clay Soap (for body), Magnetic Clay Mask (a facial cleanser mask) and Healing Clay (for blemishes.)   Read more

Posted on by Shannon Smyth in acne, bath and body, beauty, men's skin care, skin care Leave a comment

Men’s Grooming and Fashion Trends from Pearson Knight

Trends in men’s grooming, fashion and…motorbikes from Celebrity Hairstylist, Pearson Knight.

Many years ago men were known for  getting groomed, talking trash, and hanging out at Barber Shops whether urban or suburban. In more recent years, the metro-sexual movement and the boom in hair and fashion reality TV shows have given everyday men comfort and being drawn into salons world wide. This may have been a bit annoying for the ladies in their own temple of feminine freedom. I mean how are they supposed to talk about how their man screwed up AGAIN with the neighbor’s husband in the chair next to them? Not cool.

There is hope! A new trend we are seeing and will continue to see boom, is the return of barber shops. The reason for the movement to salons was the variety of style and education on new trends that most stylists were equipped with. The old school barber just wasn’t ready for David Beckham. The modern barber shop, from the ones I have gone on site to check out, are designed with style and masculinity. They are equipped with salon education as well as old school straight razor shaves, manicures, and grooming. I am very excited to see these launch and become a cultural influence once again. I am personally working on some training on the art of men’s hair and participating as a guest artist periodically on my travels at in MPLS. I have the luxury of splitting my men and women being a guest artist at in MPLS, as well.

In regards to men’s hair, I am currently participating in the look of the high fashion man ranging from a sleek Mad Men to the untamed pompadour. The modern pompadour can be completely clean and groomed or have variation of texture and size. I think James Franco shows this well with the sides being a bit unruly and the top wavy in texture. I recently had the honor and excitement of being on the other side of the lens during a shoot with the talented Miami based photographer The theme for the shoot was late 1960’s James Dean feel. We used a 1964 Lincoln Continental just like Drama’s from Entourage. It was so fresh, my favorite part was cranking it up and driving it a bit. Along with the movement of hair change, we are even taking long men’s hair and shorting it up a bit. This reminds me about facial hair. Not so much on the long beard and crazy handle bar mustache (although I participated in this for years!) We are taking it to a clean shave and groomed low cut mustache to a 5 o’clock shadow. We are still working that facial hair but just cleaned up all around.

Speaking of cleaning up, men’s fashion has been and will continue to be versions of the geek or nerd if you will. This means tucked in plaid shirts with mismatched pattern ties, sweater vests, leather belts and suspenders. Color schemes this fall are going to lean a little more towards lavender or hues of magenta and away from honeysuckle pink from spring etc. For more visual explanation this can be researched in any current Details or GQ magazine. The main interest this fall is boots, any boot. I am talking mid/low/high cut boot, motorcycle, Doc Martens you name it. As far as me personally, I have been inspired and will not be looking as put together and clean as most. I am totally inspired by Luke Skywalker in the original Star Wars and Han Solo in Empire Strikes Back. I am wearing utilitarian style pants and shirts with a color scheme of desert tan, light brown, off-white cream, olive to army green, different light greys, and hints of orange. I will be topping it off with some Harrison Ford from Raiders of the Lost Ark. That means the more distressed and dirtier the better. I am pulling out all of my stained white undershirts full of motor grease and dirt. All of the pants that should have become a garage rag by now and flexing them like they’re fresh~!

Motor oil? Garage rags? That is an easy chance to mention this motor oil fans…put away your Super bikes and Harleys and get some fresh fall air on a new Cafe Racer. This can also be achieved by stripping down your sport bike and tossing on a straight bar if don’t want to part with your honey or add more to the entourage in the garage. I am seeing a ton of these race around my home based neighborhood in Miami. I almost thought I was in Europe or something. Some seemed to be tricked out and custom, some new, and some straight up real vintage. This is a ton of fun. I love helmets and going too fast~!!!

Posted on by Shannon Smyth in Beauty Trends, men's grooming Leave a comment

Nivea for Men. For Manly, Manly Men Who Want to Smell Sports Clean

So, I pull up to the mansion to hob-nob with the Hollywood elite. I’m supposed to be dressed in “Hollywood Chic” but no real clue what that means, so I snub the powers-that-be and wear flip-flips with a suit. And I still look better than most people. Plus it was supposed to be a “look like you give a damn” event … and I don’t need to, because I’m just that hot and cute.

Nivea For Men launches in Los Angeles with this Golden Globes pre-party. It’s an interesting concept, but from all my reading I figured out the product launch (we can thank Old Spice and all their press and messaging): men don’t buy products, but their wives and girlfriends DO buy products at the drugstore and grocery store.

That’s Nivea For Men: products for women to buy their men. Nivea is a well-known name in the female grocery experience, so this is their brand extension to capture males (through females.)

Now, I don’t think I’m their market. I’m metro, my shower is filled with Lush body gels (about 7 bottles), Lush shampoos plus other shampoos (10 – it’s about shampoo rotations), and I’m using my Clarisonic with Skinceuticals. Yep, I smell like cinnamon or grass or honey on a daily basis.

I took my baggie of goodies from the event, though, and tried a couple out: Post-Shave Balm for Sensitive Skin, as well as the biggie … Active3, an all-in-one shower, shampoo and shaving gel.  Read more

Posted on by Shannon Smyth in bath and body, beauty, men's grooming, men's skin care 1 Comment

Review: eco-armour Shaving Foam

If  you’re anything like me, shaving is one of those beauty rituals (chores) that most of the time (every time) you wish you could skip…it’s just not that enjoyable (and doesn’t make much sense) to drag a sharp object across your skin in pursuit of smoother, softer skin.   It is, however, kind of a necessity if you plan on wearing anything shorter than ankle length…or if you’re not in THAT stage of the relationship, when if your someone special runs their hands across your legs and encounters a bit of stubble you’re not embarrassed and they don’t immediately remember that the have an early deadline tomorrow and have to head home to get some sleep (I thought you worked for the government, they have Sunday deadlines…go figure).  Nothing ruins a perfect, romantic Sunday morning faster than stretching seductively in bed and in the process revealing a not so sexy patch of underarm fuzz…and you even woke up with glowing skin, not so bad morning breath and sexy bed head…in which country is it again that women don’t tend to shave their armpits?  Read more

Posted on by Gail Lewis in bath and body, beauty, men's shaving, skin care 3 Comments

Neal’s Yard Remedies Organic Rejuvenating Moisturizer Review by Nando

Here’s another review from Neal’s Yard Remedies line of skincare products for men! You can find it at And check out my prior review on Neal’s Yard Remedies Invigorating Body Wash.

~ Nando

Posted on by Nando in anti-aging, beauty, men's grooming, men's skin care, skin care Leave a comment

A Girl’s Gotta Spa!’s Best Beauty Products of 2010

Happy 2011! Hopefully you are ringing in the new year with a positive attitude that this year will be even better than 2010! Have you made any skin care resolutions? I know I have…especially as I realize that I am not getting any younger.

Just in case you missed any of these posts, I’ve put together my list of the best beauty products reviewed in 2010 by A Girl’s Gotta Spa! Was your favorite listed?

1. Skin Care:

Renée Rouleau Vitamin C & E Complex

2. Bath & Body:

Silky Cosmetics Body Creme & Whipped Sugar Body Polish

3. Hair Care:  Read more

Posted on by Shannon Smyth in bath and body, beauty, Hair Care, Makeup, men's grooming, Nail Polish, salon, skin care, Spa 2 Comments