Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Merry Christmas: Here's a Day in My Life as Mother, Beauty Expert, Girlfriend, and Life Lover!




Friday, December 6, 2013

NuyBeauty: Christmas Rainbow Makeup - A Just for Laughs Video


Happy Friday! My daughter begs to play with my Pro makeup kit. Here's what
happens when I let it happen. So just for laughs...

I think my Shu Uemura master eye shadow palette endured some damage. Whoops ;-).



--N.C.

Disclaimer: Nuy Cho has no affiliation to any of the beauty companies mentioned on www.nuybeauty.com.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

My Top Five Beauty Holiday Gifts 2013 - Family Friendly!

Here are the most awesome items that came through the NuyBeauty office this year that made me happy because they worked well (either on set, on me, my kid, or my pro-skater boyfriend - haha!) and were all-around terrific items. There's something here for moms, kids, men -- everyone is represented, so I hope this helps you in your holiday shopping!

1) YogaToes Premium Gift Set : UNISEX/Great for a couples gift too!

My boyfriend and I discovered this wonderful tool at our fabulous pedicurist, Erica Marton's. It helps stretch out your toes, yoga style, and if you buy the whole gift-kit, it comes with these crazy massagers that uber-circulate your feet. You will be falling asleep and/or in full-body relaxation time minutes. Great for overall circulation, which in turn helps with great skin, period.

I recommend the Premium YogaToes gift set that comes with the massager, purifying spray, and hand & foot salve ($55)

2) Klorane Leave-in Spray with Citrus Pulp: WOMEN/KIDS
Klorane's Leave-in Spray with Citrus Pulp: The Citron, a citrus fruit originally cultivated in the Mediterranean, is traditionally used for its toning and purifying properties. The pulp of this fruit is extracted to create anti-oxidant properties and combined with and white vinegar to create a weight-free detangler hair and toner. $14.

A great, paraben-free detangling and shine spray for all hair types, in my professional book, it's also a great pre-blow dry treatment and its citrus aroma awakens the senses.You can use this on wet or dry hair and if you want one spray product to prep your hair and your kid's for any hairstyle, this is the one.

You can also find this at your local Duane Reade if you're in NYC. Awesome.

3) Honey Girl Organics Face and Eye Creme Extra Sensitive: WOMEN/ ORGANIC

Wonderful for those who have allergies and skin sensitives. Honey Girl Face & Eye Creme Extra Sensitive ($33) is made only from organic extra virgin olive oil, purified water, Beeswax with pollen & propolis,
Raw Pupukea Honey, Royal Jelly, and Vitamin E.Additionally the beehive ingredients are harvested from only holistically managed beehives.
 A shout out to my home island of Oahu, this super rich cream has raw Pupukea honey harvested from the North Shore of Hawaii and will adjust to the most sensitive of skins. Super moisturizing and awesome for the extreme dry weather we've got going in mainland winters. Give a gift of aloha to someone you love, with a little bit of locally harvested honey. And it really smells like local honey.

4) Magic Pads: UNISEX/MEN
These Magic Pads ($20) helped my boyfriend's acne so much, he asked to take them to his skateboarding tour to Brazil! (It also helps they're in a manly enough black container ;-))

Have acne? Want something for helping with anti-aging, exfoliation, and treating your acne, all in one convenient small wipe? My boyfriend Danny and I love Magic Pads. They're pre-soaked makeup pads are filled with glycolic acid, salicylic acid, aloe and vitamin E.


5) Milkseed Oil Skincare Seasonal Blend (UNISEX & NATURAL) ($58)
Caterpillars spend 12 days on milkweed plants before they transform into monarch butterflies.  Milkseed Skincare oil is wild harvested twice a year, after the caterpillars have become monarchs. Milkweed is the only plant these caterpillars can consume to complete their change. This oil is domestically harvested.
A new favorite of mine to carry in my beauty bag. This Milkseed oil is a natural anti-aging treatment (the milkseed oil, which has antioxidant qualities and helps to calm redness, soothe lines and boost your skin's sun protection). The Milkseed Skincare Fall Blend ($58) has the added benefit of Rose Hip oil to assist in restoring the skin's natural elasticity.

Pro Tip: Apply on top of makeup to create a natural, but non-sparkly glow, as blush and a highlighter; That's how I love it. It's great for sensitive skin.

AND JUST FOR KICKS:

Need a cool gift item for a teacher, or friend? I came across this pretty candle with a surprise inside and thought it was just perfect for the holidays. Not quite beauty, but beautiful:

6) Bella j. Candles:
Gold or silver plated, dyed quartz, and real diamond charms on bracelets or necklaces are inside these candles, which are only $25, at www.bellaj.com

I love that there is a hidden charm (worth from   $10 to $450, with a a few lucky ones who will find a jewel with an estimated value of $10,000) in every yummy scented candle. My pick? The Surfshack candle of course -- a scent mixed with fresh air, sweet citrus accords, white florals, leafy greens, and honeydew melon. C'mon, I'm from Hawaii! Aloha :-).

--N.C.

Disclaimer: Nuy Cho has no affiliation to any of the beauty companies mentioned on www.nuybeauty.com.


Tuesday, November 26, 2013

What are you Thankful For? My Thanksgiving LOL Confessional

What I Want and Why Life Is Good - my pre-pre-pre bucket list from my 20s - found yesterday while digging through old photos for work. To me, hilarious!
Truly, I'm thankful for what I have in my life. I love my daughter. I'm happy that I survived, or am surviving my divorce -- because my goodness, it's been a couple year process. Yes, meaning in short, just becoming amicable with the ex, getting a good schedule of co-parenting, took a LOT of work. But we're getting there YAY! And I have a new guy in my life, who's been awesome about the whole thing. I used to want Chanel bags, mink shrugs and shiny things from Harry Winston (well, maybe I still think about them from time to time ;-)), but that's ok!

But I now know the importance of having well-working families and relationships - even if they are non-traditional. I had to get over the non-traditional part through the divorce -- even me, whose been called the `soul sister rebel child' by my brother Ray, because I nonetheless was raised in a conservative household. But as long as you have a solid chain of loved ones, family and friends around you -- this is your family, your community, whether it's modern, traditional, alternative, whatever you want to call it. It's yours, so it doesn't matter. Yes, relationships are hard, but with TLC -- we work to make them better and make them last and work for us.

So happy thanksgiving!

Me and Daddy in Kyoto, 1981.
And if you happen to read in detail my funny little pre-bucket list up there (I've blacked out the too private to share bullet points).  I've crossed out as irrelevant or `N/A' over time, and the funniest one to me is "A man I can bring a man home w/out fear of disownment). Just a little explanation on that: I'm Korean-American with a fiercely traditional father who is Confucian; My ex-husband was Haitian-American/Black. Let's just say this did not go over well with my dad and his obsession with the maintenance of the Cho bloodline. He disowned me over four times - for wanting to be with my ex, and for later wanting to leave him. Basically, I couldn't win either way. But, great news. Daddy and are at peace now. Everything passes. Trust me ;-).


Beauty Tip in all of this? Feel loved. Be loved. Let yourself be loved, because you are loved. 
And that is where your beauty starts. Beauty = love.

--N.C.

Disclaimer: Nuy Cho has no affiliation to any of the beauty companies mentioned on www.nuybeauty.com.

Friday, November 22, 2013

Friday Winter Beauty Tip: Wash Off Tanning

Me, this morning after mixing St. Tropez's One Night Only Instant Glow Body Lotion with Nars Laguna Body Illuminator, and Accent Moisturizing Body Lotion to create a hydrating and natural bronzing effect.
Winter is cold, rainy, and there's definitely not enough healthy, yummy sunlight. One of the things I hate the most is losing my tan. I'm sure you can all relate. An easy way to lift your spirits on a particularly crappy day (it's very wet today in NYC) is to give yourself a nice wash-off tan rub. It creates an instant summery glow, and the way I do it, with a few pumps of moisturizer, also nourishes your dry winter skin. Here's how:

St. Tropez's One Night Only Instant Glow Body Lotion with Nars Laguna Body Illuminator, and Accent Moisturizing Body Lotion

3 Steps to a Safe Instant Winter Tan:

1) Take a dime sized amount of St. Tropez's One Night Only Instant Glow Body Lotion ($18) (more depending on how tan you want to be) and mix this with an equal amount of Nars Laguna Body Illuminator ($45) : a ratio of 1:1.  Then add a few pumps of my new favorite body moisturizer by Accent ($16) (it's got fruit extracts from figs, pineapple and kiwi, which makes my Hawaiian born side perk up, and is paraben- and fragrance-free).

2) Mix all three together well between your palms. Then rub well into the parts of your body you want tan -- you don't want streaks. The mix may stain your hands so wash them right after with soap and water.

3) The Nars Illuminator will give you a tiny bit of shimmer, which will add to the overall glowing effect -- which will beget you complements if you happen to take off your cardigan and show a bit of arm ;-). Instant confidence and happiness builder! And at the end of the day, just wash everything off with the shower.

--N.C.

Disclaimer: Nuy Cho has no affiliation to any of the beauty companies mentioned on www.nuybeauty.com.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Glitz up Your Holiday Nails w/ the Zenith Collection by Zoya

The Winter/Holiday 2013 Zenith collection by Zoya Nail Polish.
I like shopping for the holidays, way before the crowds hit. Like I bought the little USB mini lights tree at Target for $5.99 (in the photo) early this morning right after I dropped off my daughter at kindie. It brightens up all the beauty products I work with.

Today's 'display' - haha - is Zoya's Zenith Nail collection. Perfect for the holidays with its glistening effect, but I particularly like the set because it's colors remind me of a winter's sunset -- there are dark blues, navies and silvers. It's feminine and distinctly bold and vivid at the same time. The darker shades will look amazing with your winter whites and the lighter shades with your pretty, sultry, dark suits or party dresses.

And, why I love Zoya? It's great for kids because it was the first company to remove toxic ingredients such as toluene, camphor, formaldehyde, formaldehyde resin and DBP (dibutyl phthalate) from its formulations.

Have fun and paint up those nails!

xo.

--N.C.

Disclaimer: Nuy Cho has no affiliation to any of the beauty companies mentioned on www.nuybeauty.com.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Monday Pic Post: A Peek at a Beauty Blogger's Desk

Part of my desk in my office: Family pics, sparkly nail polish (Zoya), and various beauty products for review, testing that are always in front of me. One makeup kit in black to the right. Cinegel color photo gels in middle to use for photos or to test colors for makeup on skin. My Canon T2I camera, which I use to shoot beauty stills and videos.
Everyday I sit at my desk and think beauty and what makes life and all of us beautiful. Here's a peek at my desk and a few of the things a Mom beauty blogger like me has to keep me happy, inspired, and plugged into the beauty industry on all levels.

Have a great week!

xo

-- N.C.

Disclaimer: Nuy Cho has no affiliation to any of the beauty companies mentioned on www.nuybeauty.com.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

NuyBeauty Daily Giveaway No. 6: Can you guess the Free Swag Today? ;-)



NuyBeauty Daily Giveaway No. 6: CHALLENGE

Ever wonder what it's like to have a beauty office? And to share part of it with a professional skater?
Well, here's a small peak at my small office in uptown NYC. It's nothing fancy, but at the same token quite fun to work in and shoot pictures and videos in. Also my daughter and I enjoy creative play in here - painting faces and little dance parties.

On the reverse side, working with a lot of beauty and makeup products is dealing with a constant mess. Imagine having double the amount of toys to clean up -- the messy, glittery, crafty kind. Makeup is very not tidy and like food and paint, it spills. A once pretty bottle becomes full of brown yucky fingerprints, and though you'd like to throw away, if it's a miracle working product on photo shoots, you just can't dump it. Like that rag doll your kid LOVES but my gosh it's just GROSS, right?

I work a lot, like all of us moms do. My challenge is trying to constantly keep up with my beauty mess. There is an influx of products that come in -- that I need to work with and review -- keeping them from overflowing is similar to keeping up with my daughter's toys. I get stressed. I go to the Muji store (ADORE! and I highly recommend), the Container Store. Ikea. I do Spring/Fall/Summer/Weekend cleanups. It's a battle!

And then there's the me, that lets my darling boyfriend, Danny keep some of his skate equipment here. A ConEd worker recently joked with me, "Do you also run a Skate Shop?" I laughed. I find that the skateboard designs / streetwear and its philosophy add a nice grounded contrast to all the "pretty" and appearance heavy direction beauty can take -- as I am all about starting with inner beauty at the core ;-).

Ah, life's a wave of messes, yes? We just try to keep up the best we can.

NuyBeauty Daily Giveway 6: CHALLENGE

Watch the video and pick out the special something from the PSEUDO SKATE SHOP (hint, it's a piece of streetwear) that I'm giving away today from Danny's collection:

Good Luck! Write your comment here or on Instagram and Follow Me! @nuybeauty

Winner is @johnwharff - contact me at nuy@nuybeauty.com to redeem your goodies :-)

-- N.C.
Disclaimer: Nuy Cho has no affiliation to any of the beauty companies mentioned on www.nuybeauty.com.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

NuyBeauty Daily Giveaway No. 5: Nude Lips, Whipped Creme Foundation, Pixie Dust Nails

Nude Boots No.7 Precision Lip Pencil, CoverGirl Whipped Creme Foundation and Base in One, in 305, Zoya Pixie Dust Nail Polish in Sunshine Giveaway
NuyBeauty Daily Giveaway No. 5:

Tuesday Touch of Pretty: a Clean Face by CoverGirl, a fashion forward nude lip pencil by Boots No.7, and a hot nail color by Zoya in their awesome Pixie Dust texture.

All yours if you win!

Rules: Just comment below on this post and confirm you've followed me on either Instagram or Twitter. Whichever platform you prefer. My handle is @nuybeauty and either can be followed easily on the right sidebars on your screen. You get EXTRA CREDIT if you follow me on both! 

If you're already following me - then just post a comment below and you'll be entered to win.

Good luck!

Winner is @urbanrhetoric - contact me at nuy@nuybeauty.com to redeem your goodies :-)


-- N.C.
Disclaimer: Nuy Cho has no affiliation to any of the beauty companies mentioned on www.nuybeauty.com.

Monday, November 11, 2013

NuyBeauty Daily Giveaway No. 4: Boots Sensitive Eye Cream Giveaway

Boots Expert Sensitive Eye Cream
NuyBeauty Daily Giveaway No. 4:

Happy Veteran's Day! And the freebies in beauty continue...everyday as long as I have things to give ;) so check back everyday!

Today we have one of my favorite eye creams for makeup photo shoots -- Boots Expert Sensitive Eye cream. It's greatest when you're eyes have just had it after inches of makeup, or when you've just had a long day at the office or with the kids.

All yours if you win!

Rules: Just comment below on this post and confirm you've followed me on either Instagram or Twitter. Whichever platform you prefer. My handle is @nuybeauty and either can be followed easily on the right sidebars on your screen. You get EXTRA CREDIT if you follow me on both! 

If you're already following me - then just post a comment below and you'll be entered to win.

Good luck!

Winner is @iyeung - contact me at nuy@nuybeauty.com to redeem your goodies :-)

-- N.C.
Disclaimer: Nuy Cho has no affiliation to any of the beauty companies mentioned on www.nuybeauty.com.

Friday, November 8, 2013

NuyBeauty Daily Giveaway No. 3: Freeman Beauty Eclos Cleanser & Glitter Nail Decor

Today's Swag: Freeman Eclos Skin Prep Cleanser ($15)
NuyBeauty Daily Giveaway No. 3: 

Today's treat is a paraben- sulfate- synthetic fragrance- synthetic dye- and mineral oil and petroleum oil- free skin prep cleanser to be used day night to clean off your makeup w/ out clogging your pores. It has chamomile and cucumber to soothe and hydrate. The fun thing about this cleanser is it is made with Apple stem cells - who knew that there was a rare Swiss apple that had been extracted of it cells - haha! -- basically the Freeman Beauty reports that these cells help to reduce wrinkles and improve skin texture.

One can always use a new cleanser in their medicine cabinet, right? ;-). I've tried the other Eclos products and have enjoyed their textures very much. Try it out!

***And a little extra treat - nail glitter, nail hearts for your DIY nail decor and art. FUN FUN FUN!

Rules: Just comment below on this post and confirm you've followed me on either Instagram or Twitter. Whichever platform you prefer. My handle is @nuybeauty and either can be followed easily on the right sidebars on your screen. You get EXTRA CREDIT if you follow me on both! 

If you're already following me - then just post a comment below and you'll be entered to win.

Good luck!

Winner is Aaron Reck - contact me at nuy@nuybeauty.com to redeem your swag! :-)


-- N.C.
Disclaimer: Nuy Cho has no affiliation to any of the beauty companies mentioned on www.nuybeauty.com.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

NuyBeauty Daily Giveaway No. 2: 4 GIRLS, Zoya Ballet Babe Ltd Edition Nail Polish + 4 BOYS, Men's Skate / Surf T's


Limited Edition Zoya Nail Polishes from the Zang Toi Spring/Summer NY Fashion Show 2014 - a pretty set of pastel pink, baby blue and black, called Ballet Babe
NuyBeauty Daily Giveaway No. 2:

Yes! Another fun bunch of treats to give to my fans. Today for boys and girls!

I've got one set of limited edition Zoya Nail Polishes from the Zang Toi Spring/Summer NY Fashion Show 2014 - a pretty set of pastel pink, baby blue and black, called Ballet Babe. And for the boys: two awesome skater/surf t's - a Quintin one and a RAW one.

Two awesome skater/surf t's - a Quintin one and a RAW one.
Rules: Just comment below on this post and confirm you've followed me on either Instagram or Twitter. Whichever platform you prefer. My handle is @nuybeauty and either can be followed easily on the right sidebars on your screen. You get EXTRA CREDIT if you follow me on both! 

If you're already following me - then just post a comment below and you'll be entered to win.

Good luck!

Winner is Jennifer Dysart- Contact me at nuy@nuybeauty.com to get your goodies :-)!

-- N.C.
Disclaimer: Nuy Cho has no affiliation to any of the beauty companies mentioned on www.nuybeauty.com.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

NuyBeauty Daily Giveaway No. 1: Scunci Headband & Envyderm Eyelash Enhancing Serum Beauty

Scunci Headband & Envyderm Eyelash Enhancing Serum (Retail Value: $70) Beauty Giveaway
NuyBeauty Daily Giveaway No. 1:

Time for the holiday giveaways! I love giving beauty treats away and before the stress of your holiday shopping starts, I'm going to start giving away fun goodies as much as I can. Hope you can get your hands on some!

Today I've got some Scunci (love their hair accessories for Mom and kiddo) Trendy Tresses headbands, as well as a night-time Eyelash Enhancement and Conditioning serum by Envyderm (w/ vitamins, peptides and minerals, Retailing for $70). Its a Locks and Lash party ;-).

Rules: Just comment below on this post and confirm you've followed me on either Instagram or Twitter. Whichever platform you prefer. My handle is @nuybeauty and either can be followed easily on the right sidebars on your screen. You get EXTRA CREDIT if you follow me on both! 

If you're already following me - then just post a comment below and you'll be entered to win.

Good luck!

Winner is Wendy Thompson! Contact me at nuy@nuybeauty.com to get your goodies! ;-)

-- N.C.
Disclaimer: Nuy Cho has no affiliation to any of the beauty companies mentioned on www.nuybeauty.com.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Tuesday Tough and Pretty: Shelter Serra Watches and Purple Eyeshadow

Purplish eyes at the Gucci catwalks for Fall 2013
I have been getting so many complements on my rubber fake rolex of late. At meetings in Soho, on the beach when I was in Hawaii. No matter where, this watch is hot. AND, people think it tells the time - ha! But it doesn't. It just looks cool, and that's that. Which is why I say, get on this right now. They're light, easy to match an absolutely fun interpretation on the epic classic 70s standard watch. I love it in white. Get one now. You can even mix and match the pieces to make yours multicolored (check my instagram - sidebar on right- to see how I do it.)
My new accessory obssesion: the Fake Roley by Shelter Serra, $40

Now, what does this have to do with beauty you say?  The right accessories can balance out minimal makeup -- which is one of trends for the fall season. One of the looks I latched onto was the deep autumn colored eyeshadows. There were oranges and deep purples -- we're talking just layers of beautiful shadow and the rest of the face kept clean. Try shading your eyes with this Hourglass Visionaire Eye Shadow Duo in eggplant/muave shimmer ($38). Color in your entire lid form the middle of the lid out -- or one of my simple looks I love is to just dot the outer corners of your eyes with a round bigger eyeshadow brush, so you just have a pop of color at the outer edges. It's different, works as a highlighter and is something you can do in a hurry. And this particular look is great for Asian eyes.

Hourglass Visionaire Eye Shadow Duo  ($38)

-- N.C.
Disclaimer: Nuy Cho has no affiliation to any of the beauty companies mentioned on www.nuybeauty.com.


Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Backstage Beauty, Hair & Makeup at NYFW S/S `14: Zang Toi


Model Ling at Zang Toi S/S `14 NYFW, sports beautiful and soft blue on her eyes, nude lips and bold brows. The skin is left flawless with Amazing Cosmetics by Rudy Miles, lead Makeup Artist. Photo Credit: John M. Craig for René Furterer
Backstage beauty is super fun during NYFW. It's where all the action is and though massively chaotic (imagine dizzying amounts of flat irons, nail polishes and liquid foundations are being thrown willy-nilly all over picnic tables and stylists of every type are running like chickens with their heads cut off, and shouting in a setting like a crowded train station at rush hour) - the adrenaline of new fashion to be seen and created is adrenaline pumping.

I had the pleasure of interviewing a long time colleague, awesome hair guru Eiji Yamane, whom I'd known since my days at Issey Miyake. He was lead hair stylist for the Zang Toi show, where the collection was inspired by dance, and themed BALLET BABE. I also had great fun meeting Rudy Miles of BeautybyRudy, lead makeup - who created a look anchored around a soft but bold blue eye that was elegant but striking:


Eiji's Ballet Babe Hair How-To:


Eiji, lead Hair Stylist, uses an old fashioned curling iron to create sumptuous curls and romance for his bold but elegant chignons - for "Ballet Babe" - Zang Toi's fashion theme. Photo Credit: John M. Craig for René Furterer
Eiji's hair creations were a mix of classic, romantic Hollywood crimp curls, gently set into, slightly edgier chingons, with side and middle parts. Each look took about 20 minutes to create. Rene Furterer (I love his products!) was the exclusive hair product used. Here's the step by step how-to:

1) Begin by making a clean center part, misting hair with water before giving hair a blow-out. To give hair more body and hold, I worked in a little René Furterer VEGETAL SCULPTING GEL while blow-drying hair using a Mason Pearson brush to give hair a smooth finish.

2) Leaving hair on the sides free, I gathered the rest of the hair behind the ears and made a low ponytail, spraying hair with René Furterer VEGETAL FINISHING SPRAY for a flexible hold. Next, I secured the ponytail with a skinny hair tie, and then tood a section of hair from the ponytail, wrapping it from left to right around the base of the ponytail to hide the hair tie and tucking in a few hair pins for extra hold.

3) Using the end of a rat-tail comb like a pick, I lightly lifted the hair above the ponytail to keep it from going flat at the back of the head.

4) To create the finger waves on the sides, I took sections of the loose hair from each side of the middle part. One at a time I sprayed the sections with René Furterer LISSEA thermal protecting smoothing spray. This helps protect the hair against the heat from the curling iron. Using a medium-barrel curling iron; I rolled the section toward the head.

The sheer beauty of the exquisite chignon, Eiji's creation.
Photo Credit: John M. Craig for René Furterer
5) After releasing the iron, I combed through the curl and then crimped it with the curling iron to give it more bend, going down the length of the curled section at half-inch intervals. Now the sections were more of a wave than a loose curl. After curling, combing and crimping the sections on each side, I gathered the hair and to bring it behind the ear, taking care to cover the ears and shaping the sections in a classic finger wave pattern. Next, I secured the waves on both sides with several clips. Then misted the sides with René Furterer VEGETAL FINISHING SPRAY to set the waves while I work on creating the chignon.

6) Spraying the ponytail with René Furterer's VEGETAL FINISHING SPRAY, I brushed through the length of the hair with the brush. If the hair needed a smoother finish I went over the ponytail with a flat iron. To make the Ballet Babe chignon, I took the ponytail, made a big loop and rolled it toward the base of the ponytail so that the finished chignon sat on the nape of the neck. This results in a full, dramatic chignon. To maximize fullness, I lightly fanned it out a little with my fingers or use the tail and teeth of a rattail comb to finesse the shape.

7) The Ballet Babe chignon calls for long, thick tresses, so if a model has shorter hair we faked it with beautiful 100% human hair extensions from Fantasy Fashion Hair. Whether faux or real, all chignons were given a final misting with René Furterer VEGETAL FINISHING SPRAY. Lastly, the waves were unclipped and were ready for the runway.




-- N.C.
Disclaimer: Nuy Cho has no affiliation to any of the beauty companies mentioned on www.nuybeauty.com.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

NYFW S/S 2014 GET THE LOOK: Rose Gold Eyes at Jason Wu

A deep but single-toned rose-gold eye set a pretty but bold theme at Jason Wu's show
on Sept. 7, 2013, by makeup artist Diane Kendal. Image via http://modelsofcolor.tumblr.com/
NYFW S/S 2014 GET THE LOOK: Rose Gold Eyes at Jason Wu

During fashion week, one of my priorities is to spot killer makeup. It's part of my job as a makeup artist and your beauty expert, but it's also nice to see the standout artistry amidst the standard nude/bare faces we've been seeing so much the past few years. Not that there's anything wrong or simple about a great and pretty bare face -- it's actually quite hard. However, it's fun on the runways, to spot the theatrical and original. My favorite so far on this fall's catwalk is a gilded take on a smoky lid -- the stellar rose gold eye done by makeup artist Diane Kendal at the Jason Wu Show for #NYFW Spring/Summer 2014.

To me, this eye sets itself apart because it's one color, but done with a hue chosen so aptly. The pinkish gold (she used a 5-toned eye shadow and liner palette by Lancôme in Bronze Amour) beautifully complements so many skin tones w/ its lush earthy undertones. And the gentle and non-obtrusive sparkle effect done with a rose gold dusting powder (also by Lancôme) creates a soft, shimmery, sunset feel.

To get the look at home, start by lining your eyes with a dark espresso kohl eye-lining pencil -- doing both top and bottom. Then also line the outline of your upper eyelid (as you can see in both models photos). Follow the lines gently with the crayon and use your finger or a Q-tip (I recommend the Precisions Tips for makeup) to soften the lines so they look not hardly drawn but finely shaded.

Then fill in the eye shadow color with a bronze eye shadow like Maybelline's Eye Studio Color Pearls Marbelized Eye Shadow Duo in Bronze Blowout (a steal at $6). Make sure the color is nice and even all over your lids.
Maybelline's Eye Studio Color Pearls Marbelized Eye Shadow Duo in Bronze Blowout (a steal at $6)
Then dust a very fine layer of  M.A.C.'s Pigment powder in Tan ($21)(a muted pinky bronze) all over the lid.
M.A.C.'s Pigment powder in Tan ($21)




















And lastly draw a second, fine line on your upper eyelid using a good black liquid liner --  I recommend Hourglass's Script Precision Liquid Liner ($32). This will help outline the whole look and bring out the rose gold, as some of the eyeliner may have gotten lost in the addition of the eyeshadows.
Hourglass's Script Precision Liquid Liner ($32)




















Complete with a couple coats of your favorite mascara, and a touch of soft, peony or rosy lip stain. A tinted lip balm will suffice, like Burt's Bee's.

Model Hilary Rhoda, with rose gold lids.
I've had the pleasure, as a NYC makeup artist of working on
her quite perfect face ;-). Image via Vogue.com/Taylor Jewell
 -- N.C.


Disclaimer: Nuy Cho has no affiliation to any of the beauty companies mentioned on www.nuybeauty.com. 

Friday, August 30, 2013

#ALOHANUYBEAUTY Post 4: Eat Fresh Fish for Beautiful Skin

Fresh caught Marlin from Oahu, grilled and offered to my family with Aloha. Thank you to @_jordo and friends
for their generosity.

#ALOHANUYBEAUTY Post 4: Eat Fresh Fish for Beautiful Skin

To be invited for freshly caught fish on a charcoal barbecue, beachside is pretty normal occurrence in Hawaii. It's something I took for granted growing up -- having Korean seasoned meat & seafood and picnics along the sunset almost weekly as I was raised tropically. Now I know what a treasure it is being in NYC. Fresh fish is an abundance all around Hawaii -- ahi (tuna), marlin, are caught every day by local fisherman and it's possible to eat it all day long and have it taste of the ocean and not the freezer if you want.

Fish is packed with omega 3 essential fatty acids (EFAs) like omega-3 and omega-6, which reduce inflammation in the body -- and so help you fight acne (which is essentially a type of inflammation) and can help with various health problems like rheumatoid arthritis, depression, prenatal health, and dementia, amonth others.

Try eating fish several times a week to promote good health and beautiful skin.


-- N.C.
Disclaimer: Nuy Cho has no affiliation to any of the beauty companies mentioned on www.nuybeauty.com.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

#ALOHANUYBEAUTY Post 3: The Tropical Beauty Essentials List

#ALOHANUYBEAUTY Post 3: The Tropical Beauty Essentials List
 
At home in Waialae, Honolulu - photo by my daughter, 5.
The islands of Hawaii are beyond paradise. The air is moist from the lush fruit trees, the ocean breezes keep the tropical heat bearable - and the breathtaking beaches are what mythical tales are written about. Makeup and beauty on the islands comes down to the bare bones here -- the warm weather lends to not wearing much and letting your skin and features do most of the work. So here are my essentials for looking your best in high heat and mind-blowing sunlight:

1) Coconut Oil for Protecting Skin & Hair Naturally from Sun

A great roadside beverage, and an awesome beauty resource. Coconuts.
Pure coconut oil is by far my favorite fruit/nut/seed oil for beauty. It is excellent for those with skin sensitivities and is super rich in natural emollients. It also has an SPF of 10 which means 90% of beneficial vitamin D creating UBV rays are blocked. I recommend using it as a natural hair sunscreen, and as an after-sun soother for ouchy skin.

2) Glycote Sunscreen Spray Mist SPF 50: Water Resistant 

Glytone Suncare, Sunscreen Spray Mist, SPF 50 - A heavy suncare must, $39 (6 fl. oz.)
I've tried dozens of sunscreens. This is a gold-medal winner because it's super mist, powerful spray applicator is no-fail until the very end of the bottle. And it's a safe formula for delicate kids -- my daughter has atopic dermatitis, and usually has itchy reactions to 99 percent of even the most ultra "sensitive" and "hypo-allergenic, fragrance-free" sun creams. Yet, this was one she did not react to. What a testament. I also found that it was wonderful for getting sunscreen effectively onto my half a dozen or so tattoos. I just aimed and sprayed. Extra pluses are that there is no white residue, it's oil-free and has anti-oxidants. Shaka! for this sun must!

3) Gotta Have Good Toes! Purple Cream Nail Polish in PERRIE by Zoya

My lavender nails as I lounge at the beach - August at Kaimana Beach, Honolulu.
Great beauty and style is about looking good head to toe. Never overlook your toes - polishing them in the summer, when they're out and about makes such a difference. That little pop of color punches up your bikini or your tan. I love a soft purple nail as it's a color that in makeup or nails that looks good on any skin tone -- try Zoya's Perrie shade - it's a creamy lavender; so pretty. And I love Zoya because it's formaldehyde- toulene- and dibutyl phthalate- free.
Zoya's Nail Polish in Perrie, $8

-- N.C.


Disclaimer: Nuy Cho has no affiliation to any of the beauty companies mentioned on www.nuybeauty.com.

Monday, August 26, 2013

MOMS KNOW BEST: MY FAVORITE BEAUTY PRODUCTS 2013 from PARENTS MAGAZINE

2013 Mom Knows Best Beauty Awards: My Picks for Back To School Pretty!
For the last several years I've had the pleasure of judging the most practical, mom-friendly beauty products for Parents Magazine's Mom Knows Best Awards.

As a mom of one, I think a lot about lipstick, pressed powder and bronzer containers getting lost in my purse and how they survive against the rough and tumble of being tossed with lollipops, Barbie hair, beach sand and countless drawings, leaves, rocks, um, trash??? Bless my daughter but do all kids find random "jewels" and pebbles at school and at play and put them in your bag? Please - write and tell me!

My top pick this year was Elizabeth Arden's Beautiful Color Luminous Lip Gloss (my preference was the nude, Cameo color ($18)). It has an amazing shea butter/vanilla smell that doesn't smell too overpowering and moisturizes well. It stays put on your lips w/out sticking to your hairstyle. The cap stays put so that no gooey color ends up all over your bag, and there's a perfectly sized mirror right along the main body of the gloss container.

It's a gorgeous gloss made for a refined, elegant and sophisticated woman -- no matter what undesired items your kid throws into your bag.

--N.C.

Disclaimer: Nuy Cho has no affiliation to any of the beauty companies mentioned on www.nuybeauty.com.

Friday, August 16, 2013

#ALOHANUYBEAUTY Post 2: The Able Ancient Art of the Lomi Lomi Massage at the Moana Lani Spa

#ALOHANUYBEAUTY Post 2: The Able Ancient Art of the Lomi Lomi Massage at the Moana Lani Spa

Waiting for my massage (neon toes by Erica Marton in NYC) at Moana Lani Spa, a Heavenly , Waikiki, Oahu

Post 2: The Able Ancient Art of the Lomi Lomi Massage at the Moana Lani Spa

I was so lucky to have been born and raised in Hawaii. But I never got to experience the awesome ancient art of Hawaiian Lomi Lomi massage until present day. And at no less than one of my favorite, most picturesque hotels: The Moana Surfrider, a.k.a `First Lady of Waikiki, and a Westin Resort & Hotel, in Honolulu, Hawaii! If you are ever visiting my beautiful home island, go to their Veranda restaurant, sit beachside and have their Afternoon Tea. It's exquisite. Proper. But perfectly tropical at the same time. My first headshots were shot right there post-scones in the HD screensaver backdrop.

So let's talk about why I loved the great LOMI LOMI massage at the Moana Lani Spa. The phrase Lomi Lomi itself means "to rub, knead, press, squeeze, massage; to work in and out, as the claws of a contented cat." It is a serene, 90-minute, lighter pressure technique. The massage practitioners at the 17,000-ft beachfront spa have all trained with kumu (teachers) whose lineage is traced from “Kahuna Lomi Lomi” to learn the delicate combination of long strokes and rhythmic massage movements that make the total experience soothing -- and, more importantly, I found: healing.

Waiting for my Lomi Lomi in the peaceful waiting area
My particular bonding with the Moana Lani's Lomi Lomi treatment was twofold: first off, I was overtaken by the incredible tranquility of the view of the Pacific ocean in the spacious waiting room- it took me to a fantastic place of zen before I even hit the spa room. I was comfortably alone and could hear only the soft chatter of beach folk talking down below and ocean waves crashing. And of course the trade winds smelled heavenly, as I basked in pefect, salty, sunny warmth.

My bag of Alaea Salt, used to throw my worries into the Hawaiian Sea
Second, the Spa has a ritual with all its spa guests, where they give you a wood bowl with Alaea Hawaiian sea salt, known for its restorative abilities, before your treatment.  Each guest is invited to dump their worries into their individual salt bowl. At the end of the day,  the salt bowl, along with all the other guests' salts, are thrown into the ocean - and washed into sea.

I think this idea is beautiful in its philosophy and so representative of Hawaiian natural healing culture.

All troubles are washed away at the end of the day.
Hawaiian natural healing cutlure at work
at the Moana Lani Spa.


I had a severe stomachache that day from my chronic pancreatic issue (worsened by stress) - and I'd left my prescription pills at home, so I threw my tummy ache into the salt bowl and though the massage didn't help right away, in about one hour, I was happy to find that most of it had lifted! So Yay to lomi lomi for aiding in the circulation and the mind-body pain treatment process.

So if you have mom stresses, busy body stresses, and/or health concerns like me, try a Lomi Lomi massage for yourself. I highly recommend it. Circulation aids like a slower massage (e.g. Lomi Lomi) really helps relieve tension, aches, pains and overall health.

If you can't make it to the Moana Lani Spa anytime soon (though it's so worth making a trip to Oahu for!), then just carve out some time for a little self-care time. Take a hot bath with epsom salts, and gently wash your troubles away at home. Tomorrow's always a new day. A good soak never hurt ;-).

-- N.C.

Disclaimer: Nuy Cho has no affiliation to any of the beauty companies mentioned on www.nuybeauty.com.

Friday, August 9, 2013

#ALOHANUYBEAUTY Post 1: What's Your Favorite Feature? It's Time to Love it

My 5-year-old daughter feels a sense of accomplishment after hiking up Manoa Falls. The scenic 1.5 hour hike is a nice, light cardio workout perfect for young kids and parents to do together. A great activity for mind and body. The tropical, high density foliage and humidity creates a misty, natural sauna for the skin: so your pores can exercise too ;-).
#ALOHANUYBEAUTY Post 1: What's Your Favorite Feature? It's Time to Love it

Here starts one of several posts I've written w/ my daughter in tow while at home in Honolulu. I come here once a year to visit my parents, research new island beauty trends, do some makeup on island friends and say ALOHA to the island sun!

Natural Skin: Me with little to no makeup in my hometown of Honolulu
POST 1: What's Your Favorite Feature? It's Time to Love it

Throughout my life I've been insecure about many a phsyical feature on me. I wanted a pointier nose, curly hair, and BIG Western style eyelids (and not to worry, I'll dedicate a whole series on this and Asian beauty issues, for those of you who are wondering what I'm talking about). I wanted what was on the other side.

Now, after 38 years on this planet, and realizing how precious our natural given beauty is, I choose not to waste my time obsessing on any single feature. And what I do have, I maintain as best as I can. One of my goods is, skin. Today I'll share how to get that summery dewy glow. My mother gave me her nice, slightly tan skin, but there are ways to work an even dewier complexion. Here's how!

#AlohaNuyBeauty Dewy Skin How-To:

1) Wash your skin no more than 2x a day. If you have oily/combination skin, or are in a tropical/humid climate like Hawaii, use a soap-free cleanser like Avene's Mattifying Cleansing Foam ($20) in the morning; and be sure to wash off all make up all night with warm water. I like Boots Botanics Hot Cloth Cleansing Balm ($9)  -- the muslin cloth it comes with assists in combination with the organic shea butter, rosehip and jojoba oils to remove dirt and oils from your face. Not to mention it smells rich and delicious.
For Morning: Try Avene's Mattifying Cleasning Foam



 
For Evening: Try Boots Botanics Hot Cloth Cleansing Balm



2) When removing makeup, stroke your face in upwards motions. You don't want to assist gravity in the aging process! Pro makeup artist tip: When removing heavy makeup like waterproof mascara- you can always use baby oil. 

3) On a daily basis, I only wear tinted moisturizer or BB cream (try my new fave by Olay Fresh Effects) and bronzer. No foundation! Keep your daily makeup light and simple. Don't weight your face down if your face down unneccessarily if you don't have to w/ excess makeup! And don't forget your sun protection! ;-) Aging is assisted by the sun - so be preemptive: Wear at least 30 SPF every day!

One of the beaches I grew up next to - Kahala Beach. Beautiful, windy, breezy. Who wouldn't feel pretty in this environment? Stay tuned for more #AlohaNuyBeauty2013 stories to come!


--N.C.

*Disclaimer: I have no affiliation with the companies I write and vlog about. My picks and decisions are always editorially and artistically-based and independent. 


Tuesday, August 6, 2013

My Favorite How-To Videos to Date

My YouTube Channel

I started making how-to beauty videos right after my daughter was born, in 2009, using a ladder as a tripod and a small first generation FlipCam. I used heavy dictionaries to support the camera further -- yup, it was that guerilla. And the videos were shot while my little one was either napping during the day or fast asleep at night. I just did my best!

I was lucky enough to start making more and more videos and got major help and teaching, quickly. And yes - I finally invested in a slightly nicer camera ;-)!

Everything, as the saying goes -- like, walking or talking for the first time doesn't come easy -- even your first great cat-eye in make-up, whether you're trained to do it or just doing it for yourself. Skills are tough. I'm always learning to be better in makeup artist or better on camera -- and I can always be a better mom. We're never perfect - nor should we be! Mistakes are for getting better and by embracing them, is how we live life gracefully and artfully.

Here are my favorite video moments from the last 4 years. And a little test for you. Can you tell in which one I was secretly holding my baby daughter in, because she had awoken from a nap?

No kidding! Haha!



--N.C.

Disclaimer: I have no affiliation with the companies I write and vlog about. My picks and decisions are always editorially and artistically-based and independent. 

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Where do we find the real Beauty?

When makeup was simple and consisted of just a few items, back in the day.

I had a Facebook conversation with my friend and colleague, makeup artist Nick Barose, the other day. Let's just say it was based on his pictorial post on women using Monistat cream as primer, hemorrhoid cream, etc. for facial remedies. Whatever the case, all of the back and forth chatter brought me back to watching my Korean grandmas when I was a child, using their limited beauty supplies and routines.

They were of a different time, generations away from us. And what they grew up using in Korea and Japan - was practically medieval -- compared to the oodles of LaMer, rows of Sephora products and strips malls lined with Sally Beauty we've come to know as American Beauty. But they were looking just as pretty in the mirror, right? Of course! No matter what the ingredient, or the nature of beauty ritual, beauty is beauty.

And in my mind these days, I firmly believe, simplicity is the way to go.

I've been covering beauty as a writer for almost a decade. I've been doing makeup and been obsessed with cosmetics for years and years (remember when a lipstick was just rouge, and it wasn't a light too or did 17 other things ;-)?). I've seen models and celebrities from varying walks of life caked in studio makeup so thick it looks as though they're clowns, and looking so beautiful in makeup that you wonder if it's been airbrushed. Makeup is clever, it's painting, it's amazing. But in the end it's just powder and paint.

My paternal grandmother had a routine I never saw change for the 25 years I knew her. She spent many of her years in Kyoto, and then Japan-occupied South Korea. She raised 9 children in poverty for most of her mothering years. Everyday she woke up and went to the restroom, to the mirror. She would first part her hair in the middle, a signature for Korean females. Then she would comb her straight graying hair with oil and tie it in a low simple ponytail. Not a single strand was allowed to come astray. Next, she took a few pieces of Korean thick sea salt, which lay on a single white ceramic dish, on her index finger and slowly brushed her teeth in the mirror. She would check herself slowly afterwards -- her face, her hair. Push down her slicked back hair. And she'd be ready.

My maternal grandmother fled from North Korea and raised five children in the South. She had been wealthy in the North but lost it all in the division. We were very close and I used to watch her getting ready with fantasy and awe. She sat at her Korean traditional lacquered vanity with dedication every morning. She would carefully comb and pull at her permed curls and hug them with her curved hands. Whether or not she was leaving her home, she would adjust her hair and add some hairspray to create a polished 50s set of nested locks, placed perfectly against her head. She would draw her eyebrows swiftly with a pencil, then add rouge. A simple red. It would happen very quickly as she'd been doing it for 40 years by the time I was seeing it. Then came a quick dusting of loose white powder, and swoosh she'd be done.

In the mirror was my grandmother, ready as ever. For the house -- for her rose bushes, and most importantly for herself.

Want a simple classic red rouge like my maternal grandmother wore? 
 Try Hourglass's Femme Rouge Velvet Creme Lipstick in ICON ($30):

It's highly pigmented and absolutely a classic. I would've given mine to my grandma
if she were still here. She would've loved it!

 
--N.C.

Disclaimer: I have no affiliation with the companies I write and vlog about. My picks and decisions are always editorially and artistically-based and independent. 







Tuesday, July 2, 2013

How to Apply Smudgeproof Mascara - No Matter How Short or Long Your Lashes!

I was born with really sparse lashes. I used to despise this, but as you grow older you learn to appreciate that some things on your body you like, some you don't -- so you just appreciate the good things. I've never had to shave my legs or mustache (GOOD) so that meant the counterpoint was I had no lashes! `Yin and Yang' as we say in Asian culture.

But it doesn't mean I can't rock mascara, and make my lashes look a lot thicker. It really works, when done well. A lot of us suffer from thin or not-a-full-rack of lashes. But mascara can do a lot for you. Use a smudgeproof and/or thickening mascara, and one pro tip I'll give you, is to use a high quality waterproof eyeliner to individually coat each lash, if yours are as sparse as mine. Then brush them out after the application with a disposable mascara wand. You can buy these at any beauty supply store, like a Sally's.

Here's my how-to video I did for StyleUnited by P&G Beauty on how to effectively apply smudgeproof mascara, if you need help on technique. Or just a refresher course. Enjoy! Happy Mascara Wanding!



xo

--N.C.

Disclaimer: I have no affiliation with the companies I write and vlog about. My picks and decisions are always editorially and artistically-based and independent.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Being Made Fun of By Your Friends Can Actually Be a Good Thing

I used to HATE being laughed at. And I'm saying that I couldn't discriminate between someone ridiculing me, and friends just poking fun at me out of pure love and and "celebrating" my quirks and mannerisms -- and my goodness do I have a lot of them. I walk into poles, crash into people in NYC all the time (irritating my boyfriend all time to no end) I'm the hugest clutz muffin, and well, I guess I in general seem to have no regard for physical objects around me. Not sure how it all happened.

Whatever the case, for most of my life I had a huge defense line around me. NO one could make fun of me. I got horribly offended and couldn't take a joke. I also tend to mispronounce things, get well-known phrases wrong and say them, well crookedly or in reverse. I really am born to be made fun of, but now I get it. Among friends, it's okay to poke healthy fun at each other, as long as it's well-meaning. I have no idea why it took me so long to realize this, as I'm 38 years old! I guess I was a very serious kid! Ask my mom :-)

And maybe my great friends, and what I've been through in life have helped me to understand that life's better with a belly fully of laughs (and maybe an accidental snort)!

And once I started laughing at myself, smiling more, interestingly enough, all my friends said I had a glow about me. My skin improved - acne vanished. NO KIDDING. So beauty wise, it's good to stay on the light side of things. So take some jokes. Make some jokes! I highly recommend it. It's a true beauty serum that's free and fun.

I swear, the inner shits & giggles can add years to your life. You'll be looking ten years younger without even trying. xoxo

--N.C.

Disclaimer: I have no affiliation with the companies I write and vlog about. My picks and decisions are always editorially and artistically-based and independent.