Friday, November 14, 2008


Charity Volunteers Go Glam- Gratis

East 57th Street, NYC November 12th 3PM

WORDS, IMAGES Judith Ecochard and from companies’ respective websites

Many service bizs celebrate any anniversary with a splashy party…and there’s nothing wrong with that.

But there’s something about gearing festivities towards helping others that is ultimately more rewarding.

On November 12th, the upscale Gerard Bollei Salon celebrated its 30th anniversary by donating $15,000 worth of beauty services to thirty charity volunteers, nominated by their respective non-profits.

The Day of Beauty recipients ran the gamut from women who have never had a professional salon service ever…to ladies who are beauty mavens. Yet all volunteers looked that much more splendid after a Bollei Signature Color, Cut and Styling, seaweed based skincare line Repêchage® mini-facial, a new visage courtesy of IL-Makiage Make-up and a Spa Manicure.

And all pampering treatments were delivered in the spacious two-story salon located in the elegant East 57th Street Galleria building.

We had a chance to chat with some of the eye-appeal enablers when we popped in to check out the event.

Seda Azarian, Director of Education for Repêchage®… felt “great giving back” to worthy volunteers. “We love doing these kind of events,” she added.

Azarian also gave us the scoop on the massive selling Repêchage® Lip Rescue Kit. The three part treatment package with a Bare Luscious Lips Exfoliating Cream, a Lip Perfecting Moisturizer with Pout Plumping Peptides, a Volume Enhancing Massager, and Lip Plumping Gloss with Peptides that ‘s shiny clear-has already garnered plenty of positive press for wannabe Angelina Jolies. ($50).

Joey Battisti, Creative Guru at the salon…was “inspired by the volunteers’ stories” about their work for a variety of charities that helped battered women, under-privileged kids, soup kitchens etc.

A veteran hair stylist – Battisti trained in his family-owned Rochester, NY salon- and in Italy (licensed at 16!)- prior to his career in the Big Apple.

Currently long hair with longer layers for “a more solid look” is a popular style for Fall. “We also do quite a bit of temporary extensions (lasts 6-8 weeks) for thickness and volume.”

Battisti also noted that Brazilian Straightening “is huge.” A 1 ½ hour treatment calms the frizzies, locks in moisture, and leaves a super shiny finish, gradually washes out evenly (no weird looking line of demarcation), and lasts about 3 months depending on frequencies of hair washings. ($600).

Color wise, Battisti is doing richer shades- with tone on tone highlights.

Naturally we had to ask what he considered the biggest hair disasters in the past. “Frosting caps for highlighting…where hair strands were pulled through with a crotchet hook…and Long Island bangs” made the list.

Last up was some face time with Ilana Harkavi, founder of IL-Makiage cosmetics as she was applying make-up to a volunteer. We know IL-Makiage is acclaimed for its silicone based, Dual-Finish Foundation ($26) that’s applied with a damp sponge, goes on “like butter” then dries to a powder for a flawless finish.

For Fall, Harkavi is focusing on the “idea of color”---taking her cues from the gold or cool tones of a women’s eyes, not her skin tone like most cosmetic artists. “Greens, purples, blues and yellow/peaches (the latter for warm tones)” are top palette choices.

“I balance out the eye color tones with the lip color, ” Harkavi remarked…with a Cayenne Red (warm) and Flamingo Red (cool) her favorite picks.

“Every season I come out with a red-it’s a classic that always works.”

We agree.