4th of July Sweet Treat! Skinny Red White & Blue Lemon Cheesecake Cups!

The gorgeous ladies over at The Sorority Secrets asked me to share a patriotic dessert on their blog today!  Get the recipe for these berry lemon cheesecakes on their site!  Refreshing, guilt-free and perfect for 4th of July!  And check … Continue reading

Lauryn Evarts of The Skinny Confidential Shares Her Top 10 Tips for a Healthy & Fit 2013!

With January basically over, this is the time a lot of the new year’s motivation for a fresh start begins to dwindle.  I asked my favorite fitness blogger to share with us her top 10 tips for making 2013 your … Continue reading

Guest Post! Bronze Smokey Eye Tutorial by Sidrah of MakeupMew.com

I’m thrilled to have Sidrah from MakeupMew.com sharing the steps to achieve a beautiful bronze smokey eye. I love smokey eyes for fall and winter and this look she created for Gourmet Beauty readers is fabulous. Enjoy! _______________________________________________ Hello everyone! … Continue reading

Guest Post! Easy No-Heat Curls by Jordi Gailard

My friend and co-worker Jordi came to work the other day with the prettiest waves. When I found out she achieved this beachy, gorgeous look with no heat I immediately asked her to share the steps on my blog. Here you go!

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The No Heat Curl! (AKA The Lazy Girl’s Dream Come True)

Like every other female with access to the internet I can say that I’m on Pinterest a fair amount of time. Though, my favorite pins to discover are those that allow me to sleep in an extra 20–30 minutes before work. When I first discovered the sock bun trick it was a dream come true … so when one of my past managers, Amanda , challenged me to a NEW easy hair-do she found I was more than happy to oblige.

Step one: Shower

Shower and then sit around with a towel on your head drinking some wine whilst pinning until you hair is “towel dried.” If you are impatient feel free to blow dry your hair a bit, but make sure it’s still a little damp.

Step two: Use a wave enhancing spray

Pick a product that will help those curls stick! I bought Charlotte Ronson A Perfect Mess Beach Hair a few weeks ago at Sephora and could not honestly tell you how it should be used when I initially bought it, but I figured it had to be pretty self-explanatory if there weren’t instructions on the bottle right? … I’m a sucker for packaging. Turns out it’s perfect for this lazy girl no heat curl. If you don’t have this particular product you can basically use anything that is meant to “enhance waves” (I also like Wonder Waves by Garnier) or just use a light mist of hair spray. CAUTION: do not use too much hair spray or else you have a hard sticky hair situation in the morning. #Gross.

Step three: Wrap

Put a medium sized cloth headwrap around your head like all the cool hippy hipsters do. Once your headwrap is in position you are ready to start wrapping! This seems trickier then it actually is I promise. (Or maybe this just seemed tricky to me…?) First, if you have bangs I suggest pulling them out of the way and not including them because it just looks funky. Next, take a good section of hair and twirl it around your fingers, then pull up and over through the headband. Repeat this step on both sides of you head until you reach the back of your head and run out of headwrap. If my ramblings have confused you there is also a video for you to refer to.

If you have long hair you may need to MacGyver a weird little mini bun in the back and use a bobby pin to place it in an area that won’t bug you to sleep on.

Step four: More wine then sleepy time!

Step Five: Remove headwrap and finger through curls

Wake up, pull that baby out and BAM! Curl city! I like to just run my fingers to adjust but you are also welcome to use a round brush to fluff it out a bit (second option did not work out so well for me).

And there ya go! Thanks to Arantha for asking me to post my awesome lazy girl find and I hope you enjoy. May the lazy girl force be with you!

Jordi

(Twitter: @jordanagailard)

Guest Post! Watermelon Lemonade by Lindsey Crouch of Quiche Queen

I’m really excited about today’s guest post!  The gorgeous Lindsey Crouch is a Dallas-based personal chef and caterer, specializing in healthy food that’s as delicious as it is good for you.  She owns Quiche Queen (heavenly crustless quiches) and True Balance Cooking, teaches healthy cooking classes and has appeared on CBS11 in Dallas as their Fitness Expert! Lindsey and I went to high school together and I’m thrilled that she’s willing to share one of her mouth-watering and guilt-free recipes with us today.  Enjoy!  And be sure to like Quiche Queen on Facebook and follow her on Twitter!

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I love a seasonal, refreshing drink this time of year. Who doesn’t, right?! And nothing says “summer” like watermelon! It’s sweet, it’s crunchy, it’s full of water, and it quenches your thirst! Many health experts actually refer to it as a “superfood,” as it’s high in fiber, a great source of potassium, high in Vitamins A & C, and it doesn’t contain any fat or cholesterol! Truth be told, watermelon is actually a vegetable and not a fruit! This is one veggie you can get anyone to eat … or drink!

While living in NYC, my friends and I often frequented the infamous Bubby’s Restaurant for brunch. Luckily for us, we lived in Tribeca, the neighborhood that this great establishment is located, so getting in was usually a breeze! Bubby’s makes an incredible watermelon lemonade, and this was the inspiration for my own variation! There’s nothing like dining in NYC to inspire your own cooking creations when it’s your time to leave.

 

{Bubby’s Restaurant in Tribeca}

{Bubby’s sign for their famous homemade lemonade}

I love making this watermelon lemonade to sip on at home with my sweet husband, for gatherings with friends, and I even featured it at one of my cooking classes this summer that focused on natural juices and smoothies. It’s become one of my top-selling drinks this summer, and if you’re in the Dallas area and don’t feel like making your own, you can always pick some up from me and pass it off like you did 😉 – www.quichequeen.com.

Love & Light,

Lindsey

Healthy Watermelon Lemonade (Serves 4-6)

Ingredients:

  • 6 cups fresh watermelon chunks
  • juice of 2 large lemons
  • 4 tablespoons (or 1/4 cup) pure maple syrup (Grade B preferred)
  • 2 cups cold water

Directions:

  • Put the watermelon in a blender on high or “smoothie” setting, pushing it down with a tamper if needed, until it breaks down and becomes juice consistency (you may have a little froth on top, which is fine).
  • Squeeze both lemons into the blender with the watermelon juice, catching seeds with your hands (or use a juicer).
  • Finally, add in the maple syrup and water to the watermelon mixture in the blender.
  • Set the blender to medium speed and blend for about 30 seconds until thoroughly mixed.
  • Serve the watermelon lemonade over ice in glasses.

7 Summer Beauty Essentials

Happy Tuesday! I’m guest posting over on Peace Love and Glitter today! Go check out my 7 summer beauty essentials to keep you looking and feeling effortlessly pretty in this scorching heat!

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Have you entered my giveaway yet for a 60-minute Cooling Facial from Broadway Retreat? If not, go enter now! Giveaway runs through Thursday!

Guest Post! Banana Zucchini Chia Seed Health Muffins by Rachel Walker of BeautyAnywhere

My cousin Rachel of the blog BeautyAnywhere is a health nut like me and is always making the most delicious and nutritious treats! I asked her to share one of her recent goodies with us, Banana Zucchini Chia Seed Health Muffins! Rachel is also a makeup artist. Check out my post about her 11 beauty must-haves for her clients here. Happy Thursday!

I’m so happy to be sharing a healthy baking recipe with you today! These muffins are very tasty and not overly sweet. I love chia seed because the health benefits are endless. For starters, chia seeds swell up to 3 times their normal size, making you feel full longer. They help to balance blood sugar, giving you great energy! They also contain more Omega 3’s than flaxseed and more than you would find in a piece of salmon. These muffins are great to eat in the morning for breakfast with some hot tea, or as dessert when you are craving something sweet but don’t want to ruin your whole day of healthy eating. I hope you enjoy them as much as we did! Stop by my blog for beauty tips, trends and reviews! You can also find me on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram (username: rach_walk).

Banana Zucchini Chia Seed Health Muffins (Makes 1.5 dozen muffins)

Ingredients:

  • 1 3/4 c. whole wheat flour
  • 1/4 c. chia seed (or flaxseed if you prefer)
  • 1 c. lightly packed brown sugar
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 c. coarsely grated zucchini (about one large zucchini)
  • 1 1/2 c. bananas mashed, leave lumps (about 3 bananas, the riper the better)
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 c. skim milk
  • 1/2 c. applesauce 1 tsp vanilla

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Lightly spray muffin tins with cooking spray.
  • Combine all the dry ingredients in a large bowl and whisk together.
  • Next, add the remaining ingredients to the mixture and stir to combine. Be sure not to overmix, you still want the batter slightly lumpy.
  • Pour the batter into the muffin tins and bake for 15-25 min, or until a toothpick comes out almost clean. Be sure not to overcook.

Guest Post! Bridal Beauty Routine by Devon Thompson of Broadway Beauty Blog

I’m really excited for today’s post!  My best friend Devon got married to her college sweetheart on May 5, 2012 and I had the pleasure of being her maid of honor.  It was a wonderful wedding and Devon was truly the most breathtaking bride.  She is a professional esthetician and makeup artist and owns her own spa, Broadway Skin & Body Retreat.  She also writes the skincare and beauty blog, Broadway Beauty Blog.

Devon did her own makeup for the wedding and did an amazing job.  As an expert in skincare and beauty, I asked her to guest post today and share the makeup she used to look so stunning as well as some skincare tips and products for brides-to-be.  Enjoy!

When Arantha asked me to be a guest blogger for Gourmet Beauty I was honored.  Arantha and I have been best friends for many years and we always shared a passion and obsession with skincare and cosmetics products.  Naturally, I elected Arantha to be my Maid of Honor when I became engaged last spring. I unofficially referred to her as the President of my wedding and I relied on her not only for her MOH duties but her ideas, opinions, and advice for my bridal make-up palette.

I did my own makeup for the wedding and Arantha asked me to share the products I chose and some skincare tips for brides-to-be, so here you go!

{Best friends!}

 My wedding colors were very light and springy (lots of white, blush pink, lavender, and champagne) so we decided that shimmery nudes and mauves would be a romantic color palette for my make-up.  See my wedding day make-up products below:

Lorac Unzipped eye shadow set

100% Pure blush in Peach

Urban Decay 24/7 Glide On Eyeliner Pencil

Make-Up Forever High Definition Foundation

MAC lipstick in Creme Cup (Arantha and I both wore this on the wedding day)

-I had eyelash extensions provided by WM Lash Lounge

-Hair styled by Rosalie Wood of Waves Salon (She is amazing and did hair for a few of my bridesmaids as well, including Arantha)

{Applying my makeup before the wedding}

{My beautiful bridesmaids and me relaxing in the honeymoon suite before the wedding}

Every girl wants to look her best on her wedding day but before the lashes and lipstick go on, you need to prep your canvas.  Implementing a healthy and consistent skincare routine is the most important aspect of achieving a flawless appearance on your wedding day.  I have extremely oily, sensitive, and reactive skin so it was important for me to focus on balancing my skin before the big day.  Check out my lifesaving skincare products below:

Image Ormedic Balancing Facial Cleanser: I am so in love with this cleanser.  It is a foaming gel based facial cleanser that removes make-up and impurities without leaving a residue or over drying my skin.  It is ideal for all skin types particularly sensitive and oily.

100% Pure Carrot Facial Scrub: Since I have very oily skin, I like to exfoliate everyday.  Some exfoliants are too harsh to use that often, but that’s why I love the Nourishing Carrot Facial Scrub from 100% Pure.  It is gentle enough to use daily without causing irritation and my skin always feels silky smooth after I use it.

100% Pure Organic Rose Hydrosol Facial Tonique: This natural aromatic mist instantly hydrates and soothes the skin.  I love spritzing my face with this after a deep cleanse.

Image Clear Cell Acne Masque: This is the best facial masque for oily/acneic skin I have every used.  My skin literally looks improved after each application.  I use this about three times a week to absorb excess oil and quickly eradicate blemishes.

100% Pure Super Fruits Night Balm: This luxurious balm is my nighttime treat.  It is rich and creamy and gives me the hydration I need without clogging my pores.

Image Solar Defense Universal Moisturizer SPF 30: The most effective way to preserve your skin and prevent damage is to protect it from the sun.  That’s why I use this lightweight daily moisturizer with SPF from Image Skincare.

{Zach and me during the reception}

You can read more details about the big day here!  Stop by my blog any time for skincare and beauty tips!  If you have any skincare questions I’d absolutely love to hear from you or come see me for a facial!  Here’s how to contact me.

XOXO,

Devon

A Makeup Artist’s 11 Must-Have Beauty Items

My gorgeous cousin Rachel, pictured below, is a mother of two adorable 8-month-old twin girls and she’s also a makeup artist! She specializes in wedding makeup and you can see the beautiful work she has done on brides here. You can also follow her on Twitter for her expert beauty opinions. She was kind enough to share her must-have items that she has found to be the most universally flattering.

Here are Rachel’s 11 must-have beauty products as a makeup artist!

1. NARS Pure Radiant Tinted Moisturizer: I love this product because it gives a nice, natural coverage that makes skin look flawless. It’s full of luxurious ingredients that actually help improve the appearance of skin within 4 weeks of use. It also has SPF 30 which is always a necessity!

2. MAC Pro Long wear Concealer: I use this concealer on almost all of my brides. It covers without making you look too covered. It provides medium to full coverage, but doesn’t give the heavy appearance that some concealers tend to. It’s also long-wearing which is crucial on your wedding day.

3. NARS Blush in Orgasm: The peachy, pink shimmer of this blush is flattering on many skin tones. It gives a beautiful, subtle glow. It’s a cult favorite that’s worth every penny.

4. Bare Minerals Secret Radiance All-Over Face Color: This product looks gorgeous when applied as a highlighter. Just pop a little on the cheek bone and voilah, gorgeous, radiant skin.

5. MAC Viva Glam V: This lipstick is very versatile and looks good on most skin tones. It is the perfect wedding color for the classic bridal look.

6. Covergirl LashBlast: I’ve searched high and low for the ultimate mascara and nothing beats this. It’s my all-time favorite mascara. It coats every lash without clumping and achieves length and volume. It’s perfect for big, plump lashes. It’s also only $8, so you can’t beat that!

7. MAC Jest Eyeshadow: This shadow looks great on a young or mature eye. It has a nice sheen, but isn’t shimmery. You can wear it alone for an Au-naturale look or add another color for drama.

8. MAC Paint Pot in Painterly: This is the best eyeshadow primer. It’s natural shade evens out the color of the lid perfectly so you have a flawless canvas to build off of. It has amazing staying power…use this under your eyeshadow and it’s not going anywhere.

9. MAC Fluidline in Blacktrack: This is a smudge-proof, long-wearing, gel eyeliner that goes on very fluidly. Just brush it on with a precise eyeliner brush and you have the perfect line.

10. MAC Fix+: This product is infused with vitamins and minerals. Just spray it on after your foundation and you literally see your foundation almost melt into your skin, giving the appearance of a “second skin.” Not only does it set your makeup, it gives your skin an amazing glow. This is my go-to product that gives your skin an automatic pick me up. I could go on forever about this stuff.

11. MAC 187 Duo Fibre Brush: This brush has a blend of synthetic and goat hair. The combination of the bristles gives an amazing, almost airbrush finish when you use it to apply any liquid foundation.