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


Pre-Natal Massage at The Lodge at Woodloch

Pre-natal massage review of @lodgeatwoodloch via @agirlsgottaspa

Your aching back, your swollen cankles, your sore shoulders… if you are in your third trimester of pregnancy, I’m sure you can relate.

There’s so many things to look forward to with your impending arrival, but feeling like your body is falling apart is not one of them. As someone who absolutely loves her spa massages, pre-natal massage was something I was curious about since massage during pregnancy can have some unwanted side effects (especially if you are considered high risk, like myself.)

Before heading to your local spa to indulge in a pre-natal massage, make sure that the therapist is trained in pre-natal. There’s pressure points, etc. that are to be avoided during pregnancy because they can trigger contractions (some even say pre-term labor.) And there are certain essential oils you should stay away from. You should also get the all clear with your doctor/mid-wife first, as well. Read more

Posted on by Shannon Smyth in beauty, Pocono Spas & Salons, Self-Care, Spa, Wellness Leave a comment

Book Salon and Spa Appointments with MyTime App

Lavish Body & Home - my experience when using the MyTime spa and salon app via @agirlsgottaspa #beauty

Time is a priceless commodity these days. When you’re trying to squeeze in some me time, it can seem almost impossible.

I recently had the opportunity to try a new scheduling app called MyTime that you can book salon and spa (and many other services) directly from your phone or via the web. I’ll be honest, I usually do all the legwork myself from searching area spas and salons, to looking up their menu’s and pricing to researching reviews. Sometimes I’ll begin the process only to get distracted among all those steps and then put it off another day. Then that haircut that I needed at week 6 suddenly becomes week 10. (I get distracted really easily.) I was willing to give MyTime a shot to see how it all worked. Read more

Posted on by Shannon Smyth in beauty, Hair Care, Nail Polish, Pocono Spas & Salons, salon, Spa, Travel Beauty Leave a comment

The French Manor Inn and Spa Massage Review

I was sent to The French Manor on behalf of SpaWeek. Opinions are my own.

The French Manor Inn and Spa #Massage Review. #Spatreatment #Poconos

Up on Huckleberry Mountain lies an enchanting stone chateau with 20 miles of magnificent views of the northern Pocono mountains. Whether your view is of the prominent snowcapped peaks in the winter, the lush greenery in the Spring and Summer, or the spectacular colors of the Fall foilage, you are guaranteed something breathtaking even before stepping foot inside The French Manor Inn and Spa.

If you long for a peaceful hideaway that is elegant, a place to simply retreat to whether you are local to the Poconos or are venturing in from out of state, you won’t be disappointed with what The French Manor has to offer.

I’m blessed to live local to The French Manor, and having been previously to their Le Spa Foret for a Spa Pedicure, I know that the team here is top notch. Read more

Posted on by Shannon Smyth in beauty, Pocono Spas & Salons, Spa, Wellness 3 Comments

3 DIY Holiday Inspired Spa Treatments

3 Holiday-Inspired #Spa Treatments

With winter vacation just around the corner kids of all ages are exploding with anticipation for many school-free days, Spafinder Wellness 365 has some budget friendly and tech free ideas to keep kids entertained for the days not dedicated to family gatherings, traveling, or last minute shopping. I’d even say these are perfect for those, “No School” snow days, as well!

Treat the kids (and yourself) to an at-home spa-day. Don’t trust the eight-year-old to paint your nails or do your makeup? Not to worry, we have three recipes for indulgent treatments that are kid-friendly and mom-approved! Best of all, these recipes feature ingredients you probably already have at home! Read more

Posted on by Shannon Smyth in bath and body, beauty, DIY Beauty, holiday, kid's spa, Pocono Spas & Salons, Self-Care, Spa, Wellness 2 Comments

#SapphireGoesPink for Breast Cancer Awareness

breast cancerThe Sapphire Salon and Destination Spa in Pittston, PA is holding #SapphireGoesPink on Sunday, September 29th from 5-7pm. Sapphire is working with Look Good, Feel Better and The American Cancer Society to host this breast cancer awareness event.

It may surprise you to see a breast cancer awareness post here on A Girl’s Gotta Spa!, especially since we stopped promoting BCA products back in 2009. However, this local event is 100% charity based, so not only do I support it, I’ll be there as well! (And with Amanda, who is MC’ing it!) Read more

Posted on by Shannon Smyth in beauty, Health, Pocono Spas & Salons, salon Leave a comment

Mount Airy Casino and Spa Review


One of the many reasons I love living in the Poconos, is that there are a variety of things to do. Since the area is a popular tourist attraction, especially now that the Jersey Shore is still being rebuilt, there’s not too much you CAN’T do in Northeast PA.

Back in 1998, Mount Airy Lodge was the location chosen for my honeymoon with my first marriage. Unfortunately it did not live up to expectations when it came to cleanliness, activities and overall impressiveness (and I’m sure my ex-husband would agree.) Soon the Lodge became an eyesore and an undesirable place until the DeNaples family were given a gaming license and completely demolished the old Mount Airy Lodge and crafted an amazing luxury experience that is now Mount Airy Casino Resort. The transformation is amazing. The resort is continuing to transform as it adds outdoor cabanas and a pool to their luxury spa.

I recently had the opportunity to stay for a weekend with my fiance. This is my review:  Read more

Posted on by Shannon Smyth in beauty, Pocono Spas & Salons, salon, Spa, Travel Beauty Leave a comment

Spring Skin Care Tips from The Lodge at Woodloch

Spring Beauty Tips from The Lodge at WoodlochOne of the best spas in the Poconos is The Lodge at Woodloch. It is not only a favorite local spot for me, it is highly rated as one of the best destination spas in the country. I feel very lucky to have it right here only minutes away.

As Spring is not too far off, that means it’s also time change up skin care products and treatments to meet the seasonal needs of your skin. I asked The Lodge at Woodloch’s Spa Treatment Manager, Amanda Clabaugh, for some tips:

Since your skin changes throughout the seasons, it is best to “switch up” some of your skin care products to maintain a healthy, glowing complexion! As the cold days of the winter are soon to be behind us, skin may be less dry, so switching to a lighter moisturizer will keep your skin balanced.

Remember to continue to drink plenty of water to maintain hydration and use a topical vitamin C product to boost collagen!  Read more

Posted on by Shannon Smyth in anti-aging, beauty, Pocono Spas & Salons, skin care, Spa, Spring Beauty Leave a comment

Hair Color & Cut at Lotus Salon at The Lodge at Woodloch

It’s no secret that the Poconos has an amazing destination spa tucked away in the hills of Hawley, PA: The Lodge at Woodloch. I’ve been to The Lodge at Woodloch several times and have had the pleasure of experiencing a facial, massage, pedicure, enjoying a weekend getaway with my boyfriend golfing and kayaking, makeup consultation with Christopher Drummond in their boutique and last week for the launch of their renovated Lotus Salon, along with the newest addition of Master Stylist Christine Lafferty, I headed up for a much needed hair color and cut.

First of all, while the spa may tend to be on the pricey side (it is a luxury spa after all) the Lotus Salon’s prices fall in line with what most hair salons in the area charge. So if you’ve been hesitant to try them out, put your wallet woes to rest. Lotus Salon uses Wella hair care products for color, which I have had a very good experience with in the past when I previously went to Salon L’Etoile in Jenkintown, PA. Christine used a demi-permanent color on me with a color lock. They also use Alterna (the LOVE of my life) and Moroccanoil (love their anti-frizz and hairspray) hair products.

Christine is amazing. She listens to what you want, skillfully cuts your hair all while engaging with you like you’ve been lifelong friends. And there’s nothing fake about it–Christine is super personable and it makes you want to hang out with her. But I’ve found that of most of the staff at The Lodge; just real, down to earth people (which essentially is what the Poconos is about–a truly hometown feel.) Christine previously had an upscale salon in Boston, but came back to Northeast PA when a family member was dying from ovarian cancer. Since then, she decided to remain in the area and landed at The Lodge at Woodloch (they are lucky to have her!)

Loved the outcome of my hair! Have you experienced the Lotus Salon, or any of the spa treatments, at The Lodge at Woodloch? To view all of their offerings see their website at


Posted on by Shannon Smyth in beauty, Hair Care, Pocono Spas & Salons, salon Leave a comment

PA Live: What I Wore & Apps for Holiday Shopping

Today I was on PA Live again on WBRE. It was my second television appearance, and can I tell you that I LOVE being on TV? What to talk about was no problem, as I love shopping and since it is the holidays I knew shopping apps would make a great topic–but what to wear? All I knew was the necklace I’d be wearing (provided by Delicate Raymond) and not much else.  So here’s what I decided on:


Dress: The Limited
Black Jacket: The Limited
Boots: Franco Sarto Upton Boots from Macy’s
Necklace: Vintage Monogram Necklace from Delicate Raymond (use code SPA30 to get 30% off their jewelry!)
Bracelet: BeadForLife Sanyu Bangle
Ring: Leela Bijou Sahara Ring in Olivine Green
Earrings: From my aunt when I was 13 (awww!)


Hair: Exure Shampoo & Conditioner, Pureology ColourStylist RootLift, Zarran Diamond Mist, LiQWD Design Professional Working  Spray
Makeup: Laura Mercier Luxe Eye Portfolio, GlamNatural Hydrating Foundation, GlamNatural Cream Blush, 29 Cosmetics lipstick in Wine Lover (sold at Cake Plate Boutique), LashControl Mascara, Sally Hansen Salon Effects Nail Strips (didn’t even last 6 hours before they peeled off.)

What I talked about:

Shopping apps! My favorites (and if you’ve shopped with me you know I make you wait while I check in and scan!)

Where to watch the segment: PA Live

So how did I do? Let me know what you think!

Posted on by Shannon Smyth in beauty, Pocono Spas & Salons Leave a comment

A Girl’s Gotta Spa! Celebrates 6 Years of Blogging (and a Giveaway)

Monday, October 24th, was a pretty busy day. Then about 9pm it hit me…something amazing happened on this date 6 years ago. I opened a Blogger account and launched A Girl’s Gotta Spa! (<–This link takes you to the old site.) I sat back in my chair and welled up with tears. Do most people cry when celebrating longevity in their career? Maybe not, but when it is one that has changed your life and the path you were on, I think it’s reasonable to say it’s OK to cry. Happy tears of course. :)

Six years ago (if you are mathematically disabled like me–that is back in 2005) I just wanted to connect with other like-minded women from my home in rural PA (otherwise known as the Poconos.) I was still new to the area I was living in and didn’t know many people. A Girl’s Gotta Spa! gave me the ability to talk about my passion (beauty) while doing something I always wanted to do (write) and then hear from complete strangers from all around the world. I’ll never forget the day 2 years after launching when an editor for the Finnish magazine Trendi emailed me to tell me my blog was popular in Finland and they wanted to feature me in a story. I was like: holy smokes, someone in Finland knows who I am? That was mind blowing.

This blog, and my readers, have seen me through good times and bad–babies being born (Duncan and Brody), a divorce, a new happy and healthy relationship with an awesome guy, downsizing in a job, creating my own career for myself, being on the verge of broke to recovering and being financially stable…it has been one heck of a ride.

So I thought it would be appropriate to hold a giveaway. I know that is rare for this blog, I never want to be known for just constantly giving away stuff because I want your eyes for learning and connecting, not freebies. But amongst my pile of beauty overload, I have a bunch of products from MAC Cosmetics Wonder Woman collection. Fitting, no? Many of my friends and colleagues have referred to me as Wonder Woman (and Superwoman) so I thought it would make for an exciting giveaway.

(Image is not representative of all of the products listed, just some of them.)

Here’s what you’ll get (retail value of $600):
Wonder Woman Invincible Mirror
Utility Belt Face Brush Set
Bulletproof Blue Makeup Bag
2 Powder Blushes– Mighty Aphrodite and Amazon Princess
3 Lipglass–Athena’s Kiss, Secret Identity and Wonder Woman
2 Eye shadow quads–Valiant and Lady Justice4 lipsticks–Marquise d’, Russian Red, Heroine and Spitfire
2 Nail Lacquers–Obey Me and Spirit of Truth
4 Opulash Mascara–Victorious, Army of Amazons, Themyscira and Bad, Bad Black
2 Pigments–Marine Ultra and Bright Fuchsia
2 Reflects–Reflects Pearl and Reflects Bronze
2 Mineralize Skin Finish–Golden Lariat and Pink Powder

What you have to do:
Follow me on Twitter
Like me on Facebook
Subscribe to my blog

The rules (I’m a mom and all moms have rules.)
Must 18 years of age or older, you can only enter 1 time (I track IP addresses so don’t cheat or you will be disqualified), products are as is (although they are brand new and unused), products cannot be exchanged for cash, no product substitutes and I have the right to cancel this giveaway at any time with or without cause. And yes, this giveaway is open to everyone–even if you don’t live in the US.

Contest begins today, October 25, 2011 and ends November 2nd at 12:01am EST. I’ll announce the winner on November 3rd.

Good luck my pretties and thank you for 6 great years!

xo Shannon

Contest is over. Winner is Jennifer B. and she was notified–congrats Jen!

Posted on by Shannon Smyth in beauty, giveaway, Makeup, Pocono Spas & Salons 18 Comments