Saturday, May 31, 2008




Sadick Dermatology, Park Avenue, NYC-May 21st

Text, J. Ecochard,

Frankly, we don’t obsess about cellulite (we know-we’re like one of the few-‘cause 85% of women have it).

However, any invite to hear our gal pal, dermatologist guru, we totally worship her - Dr. Cherly Karcher who practices with the Sadick Group-talk about an effective, FDA approved treatment for the orange peel like dimples in our lives and on our bodies-get’s a

WE’RE IN response.

So on a Thursday before the long weekend, we found ourselves sipping glasses of bubbly (a no-no?!?)-in a packed office with editorial types. All of us clung to every syllable of Dr. Karcher’s explanation of what SmoothShapes™ is and does--- wanting oh so much to BELIEVE.

What it is exactly is a “unique combination of laser and dynamic therapy, in addition to contoured rollers and suction.” Meaning, a ten-minute per area gentle massage (manual manipulation and vacuum, mechanically delivered)…that positions and “evacuates” the skin for the- don’t feel it- laser and light combo that penetrates the dermis- “liquefying” the fat cells.

What it does is “improve engorged adipocytes and fibrotic fibrous septae (cellulite) through a proprietary technology called “Photomology™.”

Well, we were given copies of the clinical studies loaded with big words-that document SmoothShapes™ effectiveness via the aforementioned Photomology™ - and it’s all on Elemé Medical’s website ( complete with an embedded YouTube video.

Suffice to say that the roller like device specifically impacts tissue components responsible for the appearance of cellulite-and without any yech side effects like broken capillaries etc. Visible results, we’re told, usually show up in a month of twice weekly treatments.

The bottom line cost (around $2000 for multiple treatments) won’t dissuade those who live by the pool or on the beach. For us, we were loving the massage.

The immediately smidgen of a smoother appearance of our jambes-was just another plus!!!!

Images of SmoothShapes™ President and CEO Nancy Briefs with machine and Dr. Cheryl Karcher

Thursday, May 29, 2008



FX Artist Nick Herrera for Wolfe Face Art & FX


Text, Images by J. Ecochard and Mario Badescu, Skindinavia

We returned to the festive Makeup Show buzzing NYC's Metropolitan Pavilion-for snippets of the tidbits doled out to the 3000 plus excited professionals swarming this year’s edition. Many jammed their official bright orange Makeup Show haulers with the latest face and body products-some household names, some insider cult must-haves.



Years ago when we lived in Paris for a spell, Makeup Forever was the hip French line we scooped up during SWAT team-like jaunts to Galleries Lafayette.

Now it’s a premier global brand-with limited distribution (SEPHORA) and a tremendous following in the professional makeup community.

Unbelievably, we got to tap the brain of Director, Artistry & Development, Kevin- James Bennet for about 20 minutes. He generously dished some observations and info on the latest Makeup Forever product- the oil free, lightweight liquid-HD HIGH DEFINITION Foundations and HD HIGH DEFINITION color correcting Primers.

With his astute take on the biz--- “the face of the industry has changed in five years, with consumers looking to the pros…and no longer just the celebs…for makeup directives,” Bennet clearly (energetically) personifies the “we can do better than this” modus operandi of his employer.

The results…? A mind-boggling, biotechnologically inventive - 25 shades of the amazing moisturizing HD High Definition Foundation to match the enormous assortment of skin tones found in the USA.

Bennet feels the American diet is sooooo packed with artificial dyes and chemicals- that it has changed the color of our skin -to a more yellowish tinge…(and FYI: we concur that our livers are workin’ overtime). Yikes.

So these new high tech shades create “the truest colors in a wide range of skin tones.” These undertones cut across racial groups too so all faces in every nook and cranny of the planet-will look terrif in HD Definition’s natural looking matte finish.

Bennett also points out how “an HD camera can see up to 6x more detail than the human eye” so the “camera ready” Makeup Forever Primers that correct extreme skin conditions- set in 30 seconds (yeah) and inventively “raise the skin’s moisture level” –highlighting the cosmeceutical trend of ‘makeup as treatment.’ In other words: “Nothing is dummied down- so there’s no fluff like talc or filler.”

And “this isn’t Paris” -so it figures that the slight yellow light-medium beigey #125 HD HIGH DEFINITION Foundation and the HD Primer geared towards dialing down redness-ya know, our shades of course, did a complete disappearing act by first day.

The supply of the cutting edge HD Powder- for a flawless works on all skin tone finish- was significantly diminished!!!


TEMPTU- is the go to brand for Body Art pros-they’ve have been using the products since the 90’s- when Temptu’s claim to fame was for temporary tattoos and its tenacles to tap the very BEST tattoo artists (think the intricate Absolut Vodka ad).

Now, dialing up Temptu’s “push to the consumer” is new PR head Ava Scanlan who we know from our Fashion Week endeavors. She’s totally jazzed us on the re-vitalized displays, the new company Los Angeles office--- and outlook for newer lightweight airbrush machines, and formulations cleverly packaged- like the popular Airbrow kit.

Luckily, President and CEO Michael Benjamin and JP McCary VP also had some time to share Temptu’s goal of “everyone having an airbrush-like they have an electric toothbrush.” The firm is “adding 40 sku’s” for us regular folks, hopefully-while still maintaining the company’s commitment to the professional Body Arters (that’s used in theme parks like Universal, Hollywood flicks, etc).

“People want the real thing,” Benjamin explains “…we’re living in a high def world.

We cannot wait.


Founded by Jeanine Lobell in 1994, the attitude free makeup line Stila is now backed by private equity bucks.
We think the independence helps the brand’s focus- on its top notch, multi-tasking ingredients and green commitment to recycled packaging- (FYI: way before it was cool).

The pomegranate, vitamin packed, anti-aging oil free Sheer Color Tinted Moisturizer SPF 30 (launched this week at MSRP $36) that the Midwestern based make-up artist/former painter Domenic Briguglio applied to our skin...was absorbed right away. As a base for a dramatic, layered look that “glowed without feeling like grease” Briguglio told us to “blend it with your finger-and layer and build the color with a foundation brush that can double as a re-texturizing tool.”

“To cover large pores, use the brush tip for accurate coverage.” It works!

Other products used (and helpful hints) included:

Use a bronzer, not a darker foundation for a tan look. Shade #2 is my favorite and has SPF 15 for sun protection with the look of the sun.”

“Lip and cheek colors should go hand and hand…and should be light with a dark eye.”

“For older women, a change in technique is all that’s necessary…more of a sheen applied with a light touch and different placement of color… like keeping shimmer lower on the lash line or higher on the eyebrow for a smother look that avoids mid eye wrinkles.”

Less is more and less makeup shows more face to enhance your beauty, not cover it up. Makeup is a lot softer these days as modern lifestyles don’t leave a lot of time.”

“For an evening glam vs. everyday look, line inner rim of eyes with the waterproof gel Smudgepot (in addition to) lifting a corner up on the upper lid. Focus color on the center bottom of the eyes and blend edges out.”

“That’s a ten minute look,” Briguglio remarked about our fab new image.

“Focus on the skin and breeze through the rest.”


Vaguely Scandinavian sounding this American brand is gaining cult status with its effective “makeup boosters that hold makeup all day.” The two bestsellers-the weightless Moisturizer Spray (to use before) and our scooped it up immediately…the use after Makeup Finishing Spray both SOLD OUT at the always jammed Alcone booth.


Well we were intrigued as we scanned the literature about---“time released nano-spheres, barely wider than a ray of light, contain a proprietary cooling technology that decreases makeup surface temperature 10-15 degrees.” So that means makeup is as fresh as when it was first applied- being humidity and heat resistant. Best-it’s oil, sulfate and paraben free.

Okay-we tried the Finishing Spray on top of our ‘Stila face’---and after a barely there spritz, the refreshing feel was genuinely cooler. Our brain cells started to move around-is this the real deal?

And FYI: our makeup lasted well into the night—after a weight lifting, heart pounding gym session and a night around the Big Apple via Mass Transit. We just re-touched our gloss and felt this had our maquillage famously last as long as an air brush session. (12-15 hours)


Other Skindinavia products-like the Shine Reducing Cleanser, Primers and soon to be launched Shave Gel and Post Shave- are geared towards combating stuff like razor bumps, sun protection, and hair thickness...make this a full line brand to watch.

And we think, about to break out from its insider status if it's marketed properly.

Face and Body Artist Keegan Hitchcock for COSMIX School of Makeup Artistry


We don’t need our MBA’s to know that Proctor and Gamble, Inc. the humongous consumer goods company-has several- as good as -pricier competitors - makeup and skin care lines. All products are so thoroughly tested that sensitive types can truly trust the brand and its ‘hope in a jar’ claims.

At the busy booth, the busy (of course) Jesse Tettemer from Marina Maher Communications gave us the lowdown on this mass marketer’s latest that’s found favor big time-with gals from coast to coast.

From CoverGirl-the LASHBLAST MASCARA- and its innovative super bristle laden “Moldtrusion Brush” lays on the thickness with a very few quick strokes…that’s smudge and smear proof. We appreciated how easy it is to apply, didn’t burn or sting and served up long luscious peepers without looking Goth.

We also sampled the brand new TruBlend Liquid Makeup with “an exclusive affinity pigment system created with brighter chroma color spheres that go beyond matching to actually merge with skin upon application.”

We dabbed a small oil-free glob on our makeup free cheek (as this is the first vendor we met with)- and yup-after two tries, found our perfect, natural (indoor) shade from the 15 choices. Priced at around $7.99-we think CoverGirl TruBlend is a real value especially since we’ve seen foundation going for over $50 bucks these days. And the scent is decent-one of the things we usually hate in less expensive goods.

P&G’s Beauty’s Global Creative Design Director, Pat McGrath certainly left her touch on the incredible new MAX FACTOR mascara VIVID IMPACT HIGHLIGHTING MASCARA. We know this because the pr gal told us (HA-Joke) but really because the hot color choices are so obviously picked by a visionary veteran with confidence in her customer base. Refreshing.

Five “fashion-forward” combos like our disco favorite-Burning Bordeaux (brown base, burgundy topcoat) are subtle---with the iridescent topcoat adding just enough punch. The burgundy made our green eyes greener!

Two for the price of one-eye shadows ($5.49) are always a good idea-since we have never finished an eye shadow palette ever-before tossing it out due to old age. MAX FACTOR’s Vivid Eye Shadow has a nifty soft applicator that can work as a dramatic liner or slant the spongey wand a bit-and use it as a smudge-able shadow. The color delivered is highly pigmented (mineral) so a little goes a long way-and comes in sheer tones like Emerald Coast and Irish Coffee.


We remember Ramy Gafni’s popular launch at Bergdorf. His upscale eyebrow products were smash hits right out of the box. Nowadays he has a full-blown “Beauty Therapy” Line with the tagline “Minimum Makeup, Maximum Impact”… focusing on good for you cosmeceutical formulations. But his “Miracle Brow!” (“for over plucked girls”) and the new “Perfect Eye Wand” are still best sellers.

As Ramy notes, “I’m always trying to improve on the existing products” and thus introduced the new “Whipped Liqui-Air Blush” that glides on sheer and “leaves eyes and cheeks blossoming with color.”


We (re)learned that the luxury brand Lancôme is a subsidiary of the French giant L’Oreal from the super smart/nice Elizabeth H. Riley, a manager with the newish Makeup Artist Relations department.

Years ago, we’ve interviewed the Washington DC Redskins’ cheerleaders who swear by the brand’s Juicy Tubes and the Bi-Facil eye makeup remover “that gets rid of everything.” And they paid for their own makeup too.

So it isn’t surprising that the French company is once again pushing its latest foundations and treatment products- towards the pros. One product getting a big hit is the “Absolue Bx Foundation” …that treats the skin (with Pro-xylane™)…and comes in 12 shades that attract and reflect light-to even out skin tone that’s “not a heavy look.”

Plus, Riley pointed out the packaging needs (keep to a minimum) that a regular consumer might not even care about-but is often a major concern for an artist that hauls around a lot of stuff. Lancôme addresses the portability dilemma with the keeper Hydra Ideal compacts with snap-able foundation inserts.


We got a tip on this brand from a big name competitor…and are glad we had the time to meet Mary Tressel the PR guiding light of this pro-driven company created by makeup artists.

German for “a women’s water spirit creatureNixie uses its own cruelty free labs to make its pigment rich mineral eye shadows (in 200 shades!!!) and Full Coverage Cream Foundations “that’s fragrance free and can be even used on burn victims.”

Nixie also sells a full line of powders, blushes etc-at very reasonable price points. Hopefully the line will catch on with regular makeup junkies because we know the Hollywood makeup artists LOVE IT.

Those Eastern Europeans have the flawless skin we crave. Mario Badescu, the 40 years’ old, handmade brand has a following amongst NY City sophisticates---(and celebs like the un-stitched Martha Stewart) who coo over the natural ingredients Badescu’s packed with- from day one- and before the ‘eco’ trend.

We swear by the oil-free Moisturizer SPF 17 that’s really non-greasy…and are looking forward to making a dent in the sample Botanical Facial Gel to wipe off a day’s muck.

But other attendees clearly preferred the “Facial Spray” with aloe, herbs, and rosewater because–as Nicole Darmanin, the Marketing/PR person informed us-“we’re out of it.”

Rosie Perez gets done by Makeup Artist Billy B


We’ve written about this French brand before…it’s a staple in every makeup bag/box backstage during Fashion Week. Once again, the USA distributors were here with top sellers like the Lait-Crème Concentré-a ‘24 hour miracle cream’ that nourishes, cleans and moisturizes the skin like nothing else we’ve ever tried.

It’s baffling to us why the brand is not better known in the States as it’s priced reasonably and lasts.

Body Art by XTAH-C

HOT Jewelry and handbag designer, CC SKYE’s ECO TOTES

Text, Vivian G. Kelly
Images of designer CC Skye, models, jewelry, and handbags, courtesy of CC Skye

Although we attended the Holiday 2008 INTERMEZZO show with the express purpose of finding some eco-fabulous bags, we’d be remiss if we didn’t report on CC Skye.
Yes, she DID have some Eco Totes, [below] but there was so much more to get excited about at the packed booth [part of Cynthia O’Connor & Company’s huge space]. We were drawn by the heavy crowd and buzz of excited voices and were barely able to angle our way in to inspect the eco totes perched on the top shelf. We noted down the contact information, and what we later learned about CC SKY made us a fan.

CC SKYE is the kind of young design talent we love to report on. She and her story are proof positive that a young designer CAN succeed today. Young aspiring designers, take note: even if you don’t have an LVMH patron behind you and aren’t in New York, Paris, or Milan, you CAN “make it”. CC Skye is based in Los Angeles and is a hit with the Hollywood IT GIRL set. She’s only been in business since 2006, but already, IN TOUCH magazine has crowned her “HOLLYWOOD’S HOTTEST NEW DESIGNER”, and has been nominated by GEN ART for BEST NEW ACCESORY DESIGNER.

We were smitten after hopping onto the website,
What girl or woman, WOULDN’T want to engage in CC Skye’s luxe and fun lifestyle? The company nails the IT GIRL style and vibe squarely on the head. While CC SKYE is LA based, IT girls are everywhere, coast to coast, and in every country. The CC Skye woman is glam, hip, and a little edgy [even punk at times] and always well accessorized. Ms Skye [shown here in a black military coat] looks just like the IT GIRLS who buy her bags and jewelry.

WHAT SETS CC SKY’S BAGS APART: the chunky gold hardware that’s crafted in CC’s jewelry factory. She started in 2006 with jewelry, and then debuted her handbag collection that shares the same esthetic.
The handbags feature sumptuous Italian leather in bold colors and interesting silhouettes and the chunky gold plated hardware. Add these two together, and you’ve got a winning handbag collection.

The biodegradable canvas eco totes are screen printed with the “Down to Earth” motto. They are eco, but they’re ECO LUXE. They boast the same luxe-y details as the “real” bag – the chunky 18k gold plated chain. The woven handles of Leather and 18k gold Plated is a clever play on a high end/ low end “mixed” materials. “Down To Earth” is the prevailing theme - “a play on the current cultural trend of Being Luxuriously oriented yet down to Eco-minded and effectively Down to Earth at the same time” as fashion industry leader Barneys NY did so effectively this past Christmas. A few months earlier, we reported on Earth Pledge's most recent fashion show that took place during NY Fashion Week and was styled by Vogue’s Brana Wolf. Thanks to Vogue and Barney's tireless Fashion Director, Julie Gilhart, just about every high end designer you can think of contributed an environmentally friendly outfit.

CC Skye's eco tote will be available as of June 1st on the following online shopping destinations.

Friday, May 23, 2008



Text, Images by Judith Ecochard

Douglas Hannant is a fashion designer who understands the business of the biz… and thoroughly knows the lives and desires of his dedicated clientele, their clothing needs from sun-up to sun-down… and their posh zip codes, no doubt.

Backstage- prior to the runway show in the striking Buddakan Restaurant bordering the hip Meat Packing District- Hannant seems calm and confident. “My customer is Palm Beach,” he tells us-though his inspirations for the elegant sheaths, caftans, and evening wear come from exotic resort locales across the world.

Hannant also explains his focus for Resort, “my most important season… as my clients like to dress-up and have no need for casual performance wear at dinner.”

We applaud his sentiment.

Not surprisingly, the thirty-three dressy looks that traipsed down the runway are perfectly fitted, and perfectly accessorized with oversized Eric Javits straw sunhats and bold gold necklaces by the well-known Janis by Janis Savitt- (kudos to stylist, Marie Claire fashion visionary, and Project Runway judge-Nina Garcia).

The models? Polished and youthful and NOT goth jail-bait types. And clean!


Several tried and true sunny separates and gowns are wonderfully tailored modern classics-exactly what the mostly blonde ladies who pack the front row want to wear.

Our favorites include a day wear darling mint embroidered funnel neck sheath (Look 3), a versatile shimmery white silk taffeta blouse over a multi stripe lurex tweed pencil pant (Look 13),

and a plush Dior 50’s cocktail style fushia/red jacquard dress with pockets (Look 28).

As usual, there are stately coats (a shantung opera Look 23) and a jacket/bolero (a fetching quilted leather-part of Look 12) to cleverly ward off ocean breezes.

Hannant's tasteful but still opulent touches such as elaborately hand beaded necklines and top fabrics from Italy and France underscore his eye for the ‘the best.’

And the color palette that ranges from strong peacock blue (in a chiffon evening gown with flattering -otherwise bare back straps Look 29) to a sorbet smooth orange embroidered dress (Look 30) flatter those with darker skin tones as well as fairer damsels.

In sum-every ensemble will probably find favor-and a (huge customized) closet from which to hang.


We love the hair that was teased and smoothed at the crown, then pulled back-silky board straight, and enhanced by extensions (by Edward Tricomi of Warren Tricomi Haircare).

THINK - Not a hair out of place!

And rarely have we met so many models backstage that universally sing the praises of runway makeup (by Vincent Longo)…cooing “it feels like nothing…it goes on great…even the mascara smells like roses.”

FYI: Products expertly applied by Carlo Longo and his team include the flirty La Dolce Vita Lash tips snuggly glued to the outer eye corners- with a glossy Vibrant Eye Waterproof Liner in black on the upper lid= a modified cat eye.

Skin is glowing and supple AND looks healthy- with the best selling (and pioneering) moisturizing Water Canvas Blush in Forever Flush on the cheeks.

Once again, the Creative Nail team worked their magic with pink glimmery “Pucker Up” nail polish.

Thursday, May 22, 2008



East 67th - NYC, May 20th 2008


Text by J. Ecochard
Before And After Images of a 47 and 42 years old patients- are courtesy of Dr. Trokel

When we got the invite to meet Dr. Yan Trokel, MD, DDS and witness his Y-Lift procedure (a four years old ‘process’)- we had visions of Harry Potter-like wizards waving wands-transforming clients form eh to fab.

Well seeing is believing.

The Y-Lift is a pioneering non-surgical lift developed by a Dr. Trokel-a Columbia University schooled Dentist and Maxillofacial Surgeon-who has extensively furthered his education and worked long stints in plastic surgery. The latter is important to us…after all, we hear the horror stories of untrained docs hanging up a shingle to jump in the cosmetic plastic surgery money train.


The Y-Lift corrects the sagging mid-section of a face (men and women) and re-apportions facial features-to look like one’s youthful self …and not a freak show facsimile.

With strategically placed deeply injected Juvaderm™, (a hyaluronic filler that’s FDA approved), a “moldable cheek form” in the malar region is achieved with the added plus of firming up the jaw line and diminishing the folds that can form from the nose to the mouth.

Other big pluses are that there is minimal, if any bruising, no downtime –a key in our busy lives, no anesthesia, and the “lift” which is customized to fit each patient- gradual falls in two years (= or -) as the filler is absorbed.

As Dr. Trokel noted “…older patients have the most dramatic results…(but) everyone from thirty somethings on up- can do small things to ward off the major procedures.”

COSTS: Comparable to our gal pal's seemingless endless Sculptra injections.