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 #Listerine

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

real beauty

What is Real Beauty?

“True beauty is not related to what color your hair is or what color your eyes are. True beauty is about who you are as a human being, your principles, your moral compass.”

What is real beauty? Something that is not only aspirational, but inspirational. Read my story on real beauty.

Growing up I always wanted to be like my older cousin Kelie. She has gorgeous skin, the biggest brown eyes that always seemed to sparkle with light, her hair never seemed out of place, when she smiled her dimples gave her this innocent quality, she could wear a face full of makeup or go bare faced and still looked like she could grace the pages of a magazine, and she was physically fit. Because we didn’t live too close to each other, in my younger years I would only see her at large family gatherings, mainly when my family would vacation down Prudence Island. (We had quite the family compound there.)

When I knew I would have a full week down the island, I would literally absorb every moment I could with her. From being the third wheel with the guys she dated, to hanging out in her house watching her do her hair and makeup, to going down to the docks at night with the rest of the vacationing island teenagers. I practically suffocated her with my presence almost as if somehow being near her would make me as beautiful as she was. When we didn’t see each other, we’d write letters (yes, the old fashioned in the mail kind) and I would soak up every word, oftentimes reading the letters over and over. To put it bluntly, Kelie was and is my muse. Read more

Posted on by Shannon Smyth in beauty 4 Comments

Deborah Lippmann Waking Up in Vegas

Back in July while at Cosmoprof North America in Las Vegas, I had the pleasure (seriously) of meeting Deborah Lippmann. She took the time one morning to sit down with about 20-25 beauty bloggers and talk about how she creates colors for her collections, the chaos of working on set with celebrities and backstage at fashion week, as well as running a business with her husband. She honestly was one of the most down to earth and approachable beauty experts I have ever met. And best of all, I was lucky enough to get to sit right beside her as she spoke to the group (and we were both speakers on panels that week too.)

So I was totally stoked when I recently won Deborah’s Waking Up in Vegas one #ManiMonday on Twitter from @RealBeauties. What are the chances? I met her in Vegas and I win the nail polish she created from her time there.

The color is gorgeous. It’s described as a “putty” color. Although, I do find it curious that a polish named after Vegas was a subdued color and not one fraught with pizazz. I think of show girls and all of the glitz and glamour found on the strip. Regardless, it really is a beautiful shade and I even wore it when I was on PA Live.

Two of my readers had previously submitted questions for Deborah, which she graciously answered as well:

From Cady: After years and years of biting my nails, they just won’t grow anymore! How can I get my stumpy nails looking stylish (and kid proof)?

Deborah’s answer: A weekly manicure, even for short nails is key. Keeping the nails groomed is so important – nails snap and break when edges are rough, so keep them smooth by lightly buffing nails every few days with a tool like my Smooth Operator. The rough edges are also what make people want to bite the nail, so that’s another reason why keeping them groomed is important. You can also use a product like my Hard Rock Top and Base Coat to hydrate, strengthen and protect – put a layer on nails every few days to help them grow. You can also use polish on the nails, you don’t have to wait for them to grow to use polish. Sometimes people think that polish can hurt the nail, but, depending on the formula, it can actually help the nail with nourishing ingredients.

From Andrea: Is a base coat really necessary? All I get are bubbles and it doesn’t seem to make my polish last any longer than if I skip it?

Deborah answers: Always apply a base coat. The perfect technique is to apply one thin coat with 3 strokes down the nail, and 1 stroke across the tip to seal the lacquer. Never shake any nail product vigorously because it will cause bubbles and streaks in the finished manicure, instead roll the bottle gently between your hands.

Do you wear Deborah’s polishes? I’d love to hear about it.

Posted on by Shannon Smyth in beauty, Nail Polish 2 Comments