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As a Wedding stylist for the past 15 years I have hundreds of weddings under my belt. The morning of a wedding I set no less then 4 alarms, for fear I show up even a minute late and cause undue stress on an already nervous bride. I check and double check my neatly packed supplies for the morning, have a big cup of decaf coffee (no caffeine for his girl, no one wants a shaky handed makeup artist!) and head out on my way to beautify a bride and the people she has lovingly chosen to surround herself with on her special day. When I arrive at the brides home or hotel room I am typically greeted with hugs and open arms. They are relieved the glam squad has arrived and their day can officially begin. This is when things get real. Real exciting, and usually real honest. The stories shared amongst the bridal party as they sip mimosas out of cute bridesmaids cups are some of the funniest and most heart warming stories. Stories of how the bride and groom met, how they were set up by friends, or grew up together as neighbors. Letters are exchanged and tears fall. When it is finally time for the bride to sit in my chair, the energy level changes. It starts to set in how monumental this day will be. The past week has likely been one of thee most stressful weeks in her life so far. Between seating charts, vendor payments, and tux debacles the bride is ready to sit and be pampered. It is commonplace now for us all to have our cell phones in arms length and that is no exception on this day. And this is when I feel like offering up some advice. Put your phone away, or designate a friend to monitor it, close your eyes and be in this moment. Be present and take it in. Breathe. The day will go much faster then you could ever imagine. Enjoy those loved ones who chose to be here for you sharing in this special day. If you are lucky and your mom, grandma or aunt can be there with you, hug them, cherish this time with them. They too have been dreaming of this day all of your life, probably longer. Soak up the warmth in the room, and the positive energy that is around you. This is the day you've been dreaming of. And when you hair and makeup is complete and your veil has been placed, smile. Smile and enjoy. A beautiful confident smile will shine through you in every photograph taken. There will be things that won’t go exactly as you had planned. There will likely be a little drama. But wearing a gigantic radiating smile that no make up or hairstyle in the world can compete with and being present in each and every moment will be something you will never look back on and wish you had done differently. XOXO - Kelly DeVinny 

Self Care

Self Care, and what does that mean to you?

It seems "self care' is a term you hear a lot lately, but what does it mean? To me it means taking time to care for yourself. Taking time to appreciate yourself. As a mom of three kids, this is a tough one for me. I am making this my main goal for the new year. Finding ways to appreciate me! This may mean getting up an hour before my family to read emails and drink my coffee in peace. Or getting a regular massage or pedicure. Taking a Yoga class. Getting outside for a long walk or run in the sunshine. Spending a few extra minutes getting ready in the morning so I feel more put together for the day. Its amazing how an extra sweep of mascara or some highlighter can make you feel. Its small things that make YOU feel good. So whatever makes you feel beautiful or energized, do more of it! Care for yourself, love yourself. 

XOXO - Kelly DeVinny

'Tis the season for Radiant skin

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Caring for your skin through seasonal changes can be challenging. In the Midwest, we know as soon as the cold dry winter months return so does our patchy, dry, uneven skin. Ugh. Not only does our skin get dry and lizardy (is that a word, lizardy?) it breaks out into an acneic circus. Not fair. So off to the local salonspa we go.. in search of the right products to soothe and heal dry skin and for products with the right ingredients to promote healthy skin simultaneously. 

 

Ingredients and reading packaging can be time consuming and overwhelming. How do you know what’s best?  How do you choose from the many, many products on the shelf? In our search to find the answer we asked ourselves, (well Google.. we asked Google), what makes a great moisturizer for dry, wintery, lizardy skin? What we found that helped simplify our search was the three components that make a moisturizer effective:

 

    1    It needs to have a humectant to attract and bind water to the skin. Humectants are ingredients like hyaluronic acid or glycerin. 

    2    It needs to have an occlusive agent to physically prevent or slow water loss. There are a few types of occlusives agents in moisturizing products: lanolin, mineral oils, petroleums, and silicones. These can be tricky- while one may work for you, another may reek havoc on your skin. (Need clarification here). Best to ask for a sample to see if it’s the right fit for your skin type. 

    3    It needs to have an emollient. Emollients soften or soothe the skin by filling spaces between skin flakes and creating a smooth skin surface. They are usually light oily substances, such as sesame oil, argan oil, or cetyl stearate. 

 

We love Amir Skin Care Pure Argan Oil For Face & Body. It is a lightweight, non-greasy moisturizer and treatment that contains 100% Argan Oil. High in Vitamin E, antioxidants and essential fatty acids - this emollient oil hydrates, nourishes and soothes skin. It’s a steal at $24 for 2 ounces.

 

Another amazing product that comes highly recommended by Lianna Colestock, a licensed esthetician, is SkinCeuticals Triple Lipid Restore 2:4:2. It’s a bit of a splurge at $128 a bottle. But keep in mind, you get what you pay for. This unique lipid correction cream contains the first 2:4:2 cholesterol-dominant ratio to help restore skin's external barrier and support natural self-repair, while intensely nourishing aging skin for improvement in the visible appearance of skin smoothness, pores, and radiance. Triple Liquid Restore contains 2% pure ceramides. Ceramides, another hero ingredient to look for, helps hold skin cells together, forming a protective layer that plumps the skin and helps to retain moisture. Ceramides are particularly effective in treating eczema. 

 

While the search for the best moisturizer can seem like an overwhelming task at first, if you know what to look for you can more effectively choose and you will end up with less half used bottles of lotion in your cabinet. Once you do find a moisturizer you love and works for you, use it consistently. If you are regimented with your moisturizing routine, you will see the short term and long term benefits. And your friends and relatives will be asking for your beauty secrets this holiday season.

A little Bridal advice...