Spa Pedicure at Utopia Salon & Day Spa in Hawley, PA

The best part of living in a tourist area (the Poconos), is that there are a lot of little gems waiting to be discovered. For me, this gem has been right in front of my face for 13 years. I've driven by Utopia Salon & Day Spa countless times, but Read more

Reflekt Facial Exfoliator Review

This luxury facial cleanser makes skin feel amazing! I've been using Reflekt Skincare for the last 6 weeks about 2-3 times per week. In the summer, a regular cleanser alone won't do the trick to thoroughly rid my skin of all the "gunk" that warmer weather brings when wearing makeup, Read more

Malia B Luv Perfume Review

Some of the best perfumes are made by indie brands. When I first began blogging in 2005, I came across perfumer, Sharon Bolton, and her amazing fragrances. For a few years she went off the radar, but I was so thrilled when she recently reached out with the relaunch as Read more

Erbaviva Organic Deodorant Review

Mention "organic deodorant" and you may get a few raised eyebrows combined with some skepticism. People often wonder - Does organic deodorant smell weird? Is it strong enough? What exactly is it made of? I'm going to be straight up honest, I've never tried organic deodorant before simply because I Read more

Dry Skin Solutions for Women Over 40

Sponsored by AmLactin Skin Care Check out the end of this post for a GIVEAWAY!   We all know that getting older comes with pros and cons. Older and wiser (that's a definite), knowing who you are and what you want... and then all those lovely skin issues. Dark spots, wrinkles, and other Read more

a girl’s gotta spa

Smooth Frizz-Free Hair with blowpro Straightening Lotion (Review)

blowpro-straightening-lotion-review

On those rare occasions in summer when I choose to blow dry my hair, I need a product that can effectively banish frizz.  Since my hair is naturally very curly, in the summer all it wants to do is to be curly, so blow drying it straight is an epic battle between me and my hair.  A lot of the products that successfully calm and tame my hair in the cooler months just do not cut it in summer.  I purchased blowpro while in Florida because a hair product that performs well in the weather there, is a pretty good indication of what I can expect it to do all summer (no matter where I go.)

The blowpro straight to the point straightening lotion that I purchased worked amazingly well in the Florida heat and humidity.  I followed the suggested usage and applied the straightening lotion from root to tip on my freshly washed hair and blow dried in sections as usual.  The directions also suggested applying extra product to the tips to help prevent fly-aways, which I did. Read more

Posted on by Gail Lewis in beauty, Hair Care Leave a comment

Summer Ready Nails with Emma Jean Scented Nail Paint




Emma Jean Scented Nail Paint
One absolute must-have in any summer beauty routine has got to be a bright, punchy colored nail polish.  Even for me, someone who rarely deviates from clear or nude nail polish,  summer is the time to let loose and have fun with my nail polish.  For my adventures into bright, summery nail polish territory, I perused the Emma Jean Scented Nail Paint site and decided to go with a color called Jamaican Tango Mango.  To me the name conjured images of tropical summer drinks, flip flips, sun, sand and everything summer!

The Jamaican Tango Mango Nail Paint is a gorgeous coral/pink color that smells like mangoes, my favorite summertime fruit.  In addition to the gorgeous color and amazing scent the Nail Paint is also  vegan and cruelty-free and does not contain harmful ingredients such as Toluene, Formaldehyde, Camphor, and Dibutyl Phthalates. Read more

Posted on by Gail Lewis in beauty, Nail Polish, Summer Beauty 1 Comment

Summer Ready Legs With Kiss My Face Moisturize Shave

kiss-my-face-moisture-shaveIn the summer, when it comes to keeping my legs fuzz free, I tend to opt for shaving instead of my usual waxing.  This is  mainly because waxing requires that your hair be a certain length before you can rip them out by their roots and summer just does not permit hair growth of any kind on anyplace but one’s head…unless you plan on sticking to maxi everything while you grow them out.

I just feel like my legs hide under enough thick layers during the colder months so the last thing I want to do is hide in the summer.  Since I opt for shaving my legs during summer I tend to look for shaving products that are really moisturizing without being messy and that are also soothing to my skin since my skin tends to get quite irritated after shaving if I use the wrong product. Read more

Posted on by Gail Lewis in bath and body, beauty, Summer Beauty, Travel Beauty Leave a comment

A Girl’s Gotta Spa! Featured in Spry Living Mom Makeover


When Spry Living Magazine asked me if myself and two A Girl’s Gotta Spa! bloggers would be interested in making over our moms, we didn’t hesitate to say yes. Myself, Ashley and Hillary all participated in Spry Living’s Take Year’s Off Your Looks Instantly (web and print) story and Making Over Mom with tips.

Each of our moms had challenges that prevented them from updating their look. My mom had hair loss/thinning hair, sagging skin, etc. all related to bariatric surgery she had two years ago. Ashley’s mom has nerve damage and a disability when it comes to the use of her arm. Hillary’s mom was nervous since losing all of her hair so long ago (but it has since grown back.)

From skin care to hair care to makeup, here’s the breakdown of the products used to transformed our moms.

mom-makeovers

Paula (my mom): Read more

Posted on by Shannon Smyth in anti-aging, beauty, blush, bronzer, brows, concealer, DIY Beauty, eye shadow, eyeliner, foundation, highlighter, lip gloss, lipstick, Makeup, makeup tips, mascara, Nail Polish, Primer, salon, skin care 1 Comment

Beauty Blogger Essentials on NewBeauty

While I’ve had the opportunity to review a multitude of beauty products over the last 8 years, there are always certain ones that stand out and remain a favorite well past their posted review. These are products I continue to use and recommend to others.

Today those products are featured on NewBeauty.com in their Beauty Blogger Essentials post. When you have a moment, check it out!

NewBeauty

Posted on by Shannon Smyth in anti-aging, bath and body, beauty, beauty interview, Hair Care, Makeup, Primer Leave a comment

J.R. Watkins Coconut Milk & Honey Body Butter and Body Scrub Review

jrwatkins-body-scrub-and-butterNothing says summer and vacation to me more than the scent of coconut.  And nothing says swimsuit ready more than soft, smooth, hydrated skin.  Now combine the scent of coconut with products  that exfoliate and moisturize my skin leaving it insanely smooth, glowing and hydrated. Who needs 80 degree temps? It’s practically summer in my shower right now…or at least it felt like it about ten minutes ago.  After I used the Coconut Milk & Honey  Body Scrub and Body Butter from J.R Watkins.

The natural scrub is a combination of sugar, shea butter and natural oils and smells absolutely delicious.  It effectively exfoliated my skin without feeling harsh and scratchy.  I loved that the scrub is also moisturizing so I did not feel like I was stripping my skin of moisturize while I exfoliated.  The body butter, like the scrub is also natural and has an amazing scent that is not overpowering.  The scent is light, fresh and clean…perfect for summer.  It felt decadent and luxurious on my skin and left it looking and feeling soft and radiant.  Read more

Posted on by Gail Lewis in bath and body, beauty 1 Comment

How to Get a Better Hairstyle: Tips From Salon A.K.S



best-hairstylesMany of you can most likely relate to this scenario.  You have in your minds eye the perfect haircut or color that you think will look just absolutely amazing on you. You go into the salon and think that you do a pretty good job of explaining to your stylist what it is that you desire, but then you leave the salon feeling like somehow something got lost in translation because the cut or color you are leaving the salon with is not exactly what you had pictured.

So what happened? Did you not communicate clearly? Should you have brought in a better picture of what you wanted? Did your stylist think that what you wanted might not have been the best look for you? Maybe none of the above or maybe all three? Either way, this scenario is all too common and with spring and summer fast approaching, many of you much like myself, will be looking to update your ‘do a little…or drastically.

In an effort to help our readers better communicate with their hairstylist so that they look and feel their absolute best this spring and summer, we reached out to the industry experts at Salon AKS in New York City for some of their tips on better communication between clients and their hairstylist. We hope this will also shed some light on what your hairstylist, (if they are a good hairstylist), should consider before cutting and coloring your hair.  Read more

Posted on by Gail Lewis in beauty, beauty interview, Hair Care, salon Leave a comment

DIY Exfoliating Face Mask


 

DIY Exfoliating Face Mask
My favorite beauty treatments are those that I can create myself with ingredients from my own kitchen.  Creating my own beauty treatments makes me feel good about what I am putting on my skin because I know exactly where the ingredients came from and I know that they won’t harm my skin.

This morning my sister greeted me at her door with bright, glowing, soft skin sans makeup.  And since my sister is a walking  beauty encyclopedia, I had to know what got her skin looking so amazing.  Turns out it was her own concoction of coffee grounds, honey and lemon. The coffee grounds exfoliates the skin, functions as an anti-inflammatory and contains antioxidants.  The honey is a really great  moisturizer and leaves skin feeling soft and supple.  The lemon brightens skin and minimizes the look of pores while getting rid of oil.  Read more

Posted on by Gail Lewis in beauty, DIY Beauty, skin care 4 Comments

True Blue Spa Pumpkin Renewing Face Mask

One of my many winter skin woes is dry, dull skin. Add a lot of travelling during the winter months to that equation and my skin takes a beating.  I honestly feel like I need a weekly peel to help my skin look refreshed, bright and smooth, but going into a spa every week for a peel is just not in my budget at the moment so I have to opt instead for at home skin renewing treatments. This, can of course, also get expensive depending on how you well you expect them to work.

Thanks to my amazing sister, I have in my possession a  renewing face mask that is only $12 and works great on my skin.  I am visiting my family in Minnesota at the moment and noticed the Pumpkin Renewing Face Mask by True Blue Spa in her beauty stash.  I, of course, had to try it. Especially since she seems to be crazy in love with it.  Read more

Posted on by Gail Lewis in anti-aging, beauty, skin care Leave a comment

Bodycology Sweet Love Nourishing Body Cream Review

Just in time for Valentine’s Day, a flowery scented body cream from bodycology.  From their new Sweet Love Fragrance collection, the Nourishing Body Cream contains notes of sweet mandarin, sparkling red pear and vanilla orchid. Fruity top notes dry down and give way to a floral heart of sweet rose and amber.  If you like very feminine fragrances, then this body cream will definitely appeal to you.

I generally prefer clean, light fragrances but did not mind the Sweet Love Fragrance.  I would however, only use one product at a time from this collection and would definitely not layer them as they might be too overpowering when used together.    When I first applied the Sweet Love Nourishing Body Cream, the fragrance was pretty strong, but throughout the day it became much softer and lighter.  I would certainly use this body cream when I want to embrace my girly, romantic side.  Read more

Posted on by Gail Lewis in bath and body, beauty Leave a comment