Tag Archives: inspiration

Blogger Friendship Award

Thank you to Tami from The Holistic Diva (http://essensu.blogspot.com) for awarding GirlPaint the Vespa Blogger Friendship Award. Your kindness and friendship are deeply appreciated. We here at GirlPaint love your blog, and I am thrilled to be a blogger “friend.”

Vespa Blogger Friendship Award
Vespa Blogger Friendship Award

In turn, I would like to award the Vespa Blogger Friendship Award to the following blogs whose amazing publishers have shared their friendship and expertise with me:

Nanci at NCN Professional Skin Care blog (aka Nanci’s Blog), http://www.ncnproskincare.com/myblog

Angie at The Herbarie blog, http://theherbarie.blogspot.com

Kirstie at Beaut.ie, The Irish Beauty Blog, http://beaut.ie/blog

All the women at DeLush, http://www.delush.com

Winona at Daddy Likey, http://daddylikey.blogspot.com

Frugal Fashionista, http://frugal-fashionistas.com

Elke at Elke Von Freudenberg’s blog, http://www.elkevonfreudenberg.com/blog

If you would like to pass this award on to some of your blogger friends, then here’s how to do it (as passed on to me):

1. Put the logo on your blog
2. Add a link to the person who awarded you
3. Nominate at least 7 other blogs
4. Add links to those blogs on your blog
5. Leave a message for the nominees on their blog

Thank you to my friends in the beauty blogosphere for sharing your advice, wisdom and — most of all — your sense of humor.

Beauty Q&A with GirlPaint: Free Advice for A More Beautiful You

Q&ARecently I became a member of MakeupTalk forum. I LOVE posting on forums, and not because I want to promote myself or my blog (although that’s a nice benefit if other members like my posts), but because I really, honestly like giving advice, tips, tricks and product reviews. It’s the reason I started blogging in the first place. I was working in an industry that cut me off from the beauty world, and I desparately needed to connect to my makeup-loving sister (and brothers).

Following is a condensed Q&A excerpted from my MakeupTalk forum posts.

Q. I’m African American and have desert hair that desparately needs moisture. Recommendations?
A. Coconut oil, definitely. And use a deep conditioner (recommended: Mizani Fufyl) when you shampoo.

Q. Should I tip beauty school students?
A. You should tip 10%. If they do an especially good job, you can tip more than 10%, and be sure to find out where they’ll be working when they fiinish school. If you split the tip, tip 10% of the TOTAL, and split it between the students based on the work they did.

Q. I’ve heard Bio Oil is good for your skin, but I don’t like the feeling of oils on my face. Can you recommend on something to put under my mineral makeup that will not clogs pores or cause break outs?
A. Try Korres Pomegranate Moisturizer. It’s light formula is made for people with oily/acne-prone skin, plus it contains SPF (bonus!).

Q. How do I get rid of dark circles under my eyes?
A. Lessening (NOT getting rid of) dark circles can happen, but it takes time. Many good products are out there to address the issue, but you’ll need to use them consistently (that means at least once a day…twice is better) for 3-4 months. I’ve been using Skin Actives Scientifics Bright Eye cream for over two years. It contains the best active ingredients known to help fix the problem, plus it’s only $17.50 and the .5 oz. jar lasts forever (for me anyway). I believe in SAS Bright Eye 100%, but realize that dark circles are, in large part, hereditary and you may still have to use undereye concealers if you want to camouflage them.

Q. Does anyone believe the Clarisonic Brush is worth it?
A. I’ve used a Clarisonic Brush myself, and on top of my own “thumbs-up,” I’ve also heard rave reviews from just about everyone who’s used one. But $200 is a lot to shell out for a face cleaning appliance. QVC offers a payment plan ($40/payment) that might be the way to go. Either that or purchase one locally and that way, if you don’t like it, you can return it (be sure you check out your retailer’s return policy).

Q. (Non-beauty related) When sending out resumes, should i put my cover letter and my resume all in the body of the email? Or should I send the cover letter in the body and attach the resume?
A. Send ONE email with the cover letter at the top and then copy and paste your resume underneath the letter. NO ATTACHMENTS unless the company specifically asks for them. Always send your resume in the body of the e-mail message, not as an attachment. Put the resume right in the message so the recipient will see it as soon as he or she opens the message. This technique also helps you get through e-mail systems that reject all attachments in this day of rampant computer viruses.

Q. Optical Illusion Dresses – Yea or Nea?

A. Optical Illusion Dresses look perfect….if you have a PERFECT body. Consider yourself warned.

Q. Did anyone else absolutely hate Bare Minerals?
A. I’ve never been a fan of BE/BM — too orange-y for me, plus it’s cakey on me. I make my own mineral foundation. It’s soooooo easy and sooooo inexpensive. I literally mix a little titanium dioxide w/ red oxide mineral powder with a mortar and pestle. You’d think it would be too pink, but those two ingredients work perfectly for me, plus the titanium dioxide gives me added sun protection.

Q. (Follow-up question) Where do you buy the ingredients to make your own mineral makeup? Does it provide any better coverage when you make your own?
A. Do a Google search for “mineral makeup ingredients” and “mineral makeup recipe.” You’ll find tons of info. And the mmu coverage can be customized, so you can make yours with light, medium or full coverage…or one of each!

What's the Opposite of Oscar?

Heath Ledger as The JokerI  knew EVERYONE and her dawg was going to be blogging about the Academy Awards today, and for some reason I just wanted to avoid the whole thing.

To be honest with you, I haven’t enjoyed the Oscars–much less any of the other awards shows–in a few years. It seems they’ve all changed their focus from the stuff being honored to the stuff coming down the red carpet. I know, I know. As much as I’m obsessed with beauty and fashion (look at my blog for Gawd’s sake), I’m just afraid “it” has become so homogenized, vanilla, dare-I-say boring? I mean, have you visited the Oscars website? Front and center is a video embed featuring some Entertainment Tonight “correspondent” selling us the latest red-carpet story. Geez-louise.

So, here I am wondering what to post. The opposite of Oscar? But what though? Something sorta punk-rock, independent, vintage, intelligent…?

That train of thought immediately led me to London street fashion, especially in the 1970’s. Iconist images of torn clothing, brightly-colored spikey hair, highly contrasting stripes, the Union Jack, leather, plastic, safety pins.

PunkThen I remembered: every bit of London Street had been packaged and sold, too. Vivienne Westwood, Malcolm McClaren, ForbiddenLondon.com (oh really?) and the endless stream of individuals and corporations paying homage to these creative kids and their crazy duds…guess what? That homage became none other than a new fad, the latest fashion trend, packaged, homogenous. I see it even now reflected in the skinny jeans and leather jackets the young hipsters are sporting. All the way down to Heath Ledger’s portrayal of The Joker (okay, that might be a bit of a stretch but not much of one).

Westwood Fashion MontageI began to wonder: is nothing safe? Sacred? Above being bought and sold?

My answer: no. And that’s the nature of the world of beauty, fashion, and yes, even movies and Hollywood. In fact, Hollywood is one of the biggest “homage-payers,” or offenders, whichever way you want to look at it. The old saying, “everything old is new again” rings true year after year, collection after collection, movie after movie.

So what’s my point? Honestly I’m not sure if I have one, but I think my avoidance of all things-Hollywood this past year right up to Oscar is further evidence of my need for inspiration, something new and fresh. Some thing to pay homage to, if you will.

So I ask: what inspires you? Oh yes, and did your Oscar predictions win?


(c) Steven Knight courtesy stock.xchng (www.sxc.hu). All rights reserved.
image courtesy stock.xchng (www.sxc.hu).

Lately I’ve been so uninspired. Can you tell? FYI: that’s NOT me in the picture; it’s actually the photographer. The expression on his face so perfectly represented how I’ve felt lately, I had to put it up.

Anyway, as you’ve probably noticed, I haven’t posted since election day. And let’s face it: that was a lazy post.

Ya know, probably like a lot of you, I’ve got a list of really great blogs to read when I’m feeling less than inspired. Except that over the past few months when I read one of my guru’s posts, I’m either less inspired than I was before I read it, or worse, I just get mad.

What is that?Where did this blah-anger (blanger?) come from?

Well, I’ve thought about it a little– ignored it mostly — but here’s what I’ve come up with. The recent election, while incredibly inspiring (sorry if you’re not an Obama supporter…I clearly am), was exhausting. Then, a close relative was all but taken down by a stroke. Next, the economy tumbled…some more, and then took a nosedive. Then the holidays hit. Then we were expected to be all happy it was 2009, and make some exciting new resolutions for ourselves. And I did. And I haven’t kept any of them. And now everything seems that much worse.

It comes down to this: mid-winter is hard for me. And it’s hard for a lot of people. Just do a google search for “mid-winter blues,” and you’ll see what I’m talking about, if you’re not already a fellow sufferer.

I suppose I’ve always been a little low-energy this time of year, but this year, it’s more magnified. With all the bad news of late (and yes, I’m a total news hound), I’ve been absorbing it all. Plus we (as in, the U.S.) have experienced a harsher-than-usual winter. And that equals less time outside in the fresh air. Guess what? Lack of sunlight is a proven depressant. Not to mention the lack of exercise that naturally accompanies lengthy indoor stays.

So, what’s the solution? One guy with the Chicago Sun-Times suggests playing hooky and going ice fishing. Some genius over at Cosmo swears flavored lip gloss is the cure. And yet another recommedation to beat the blues? Poetry.

I’m definitely on board with staying home from work, and I do love my lipgloss. Poetry? Maybe.

Honestly, the trick to pushing through the winter blues, mean reds, the blahs…also known as Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), isn’t really a trick at all. Being patient (difficult, I know), giving yourself a break (go ahead, take a day off), recognizing it’s a stressful time and doing your best to mitigate it…these can be the best “cures” for what ails those of us who aren’t their best this time of year.

Of course avoiding known stressors helps too: lack of sleep, poor diet, worrying, too much caffeine or alcohol, and the like…you know what your s are.And taking care of yourself will help, too. Eating breakfast, getting enough sleep, drinking enough water, savoring a cup of your favorite tea or cocoa, enjoying a nice, long soak in the tub…these are all simple ways to get through the winter.

And although you might not be able to go for a jog — or you just can’t seem to drag your butt to the gym — doing a little gentle stretching before bed or incorporating a couple of minutes of squats or lunges while you brush your teeth in the morning will make you feel like less of a slug.

And guess what? Spring will be here before we know it. Spring in all its bountiful glory. Ah, just thinking about it inspires me.

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