Makeup for any occasion

Feeling confident and polished before a big event is priceless. Women innately know what makes them feel this way. For me, I feel my best when my toes are polished, my hair isn't frizzy, my clothes fit properly, and my makeup is on point. When those things are aligned, I effortlessly have a relaxed time and don't panic when someone insists on taking a picture or a selfie. This, to me, is worth the effort. It's what I tell men and women all the time. As much as we like to pretend it doesn't matter what somebody's first impression is of us, it actually does. Looking and feeling your best coincides with confidence and self esteem. Having a "Glam Squad" (a team of professionals to help you dress and get made up) isn't realistic for any of us. How nice to have someone pull the perfect outfit, with the best shoes and jewelry. Then your hair and makeup team arrive and make you look gorgeous. No wonder celebrities look amazing.

I am part of that solution. This is the work I do for women. It has been my career: helping women achieve their goals and feel their best through grooming, skincare, and makeup. This past Spring and early Summer I found myself quite busy getting girls and women ready for moments in their lives they'd like to feel and look their best. And it was an honor!

All of these photos were taken with an iPhone 6s. Because they were not taken by a professional, I won't put them up in my gallery. However, it's a good documentation of my work, which still happens even when a professional photographer isn't around to shoot. My Services page details all my makeup services. Remember, when an important event is coming up, "better call the Gotham Goddess".

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Zuzu

Prom makeup, brows & hair.

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Meredith

Prom makeup & brows

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Kelly

 Facebook LIVE appearance makeup

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Carmen

Prom makeup & brows

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Karah

Bridal makeup & brows

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Jessica & Juliet

Bat Mitzvah makeup & brows

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Alysa

Bridal makeup & brows

Why peptides are amazing!

Take a look at this handy peptide "cheat sheet" Image Skincare sent me.

I have a variety of products that have peptides that can completely change your skin condition. Let's talk and I'll show you what I have. Complimentary samples are given at every facial.

Facial by candlelight

The solstice is near. The days are becoming shorter.  Book your facial in the 4:00pm spot and experience the Candlelight Facial. Weekends only. 

All winter long! 

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photo taken and published with permission 

Holiday Scheduling 2017 is underway!

If you're like me, you like a little reminder about scheduling. I can't stand it when I call my hair salon and can't get an appointment because I they're booked 4 weeks in advanced! A little heads' up would have been nice.

So, my Goddesses, here is your heads' up. 

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All Teens Have Oily Skin. FALSE!

A thought popped into my head as I was analyzing a teen's skin last week: "Why do so many people assume teenagers are oily? All I'm seeing are DRY skin types!" That's right. 5 out of the 6 teens I saw this month were a dry skin type. Debunking the stereotype that teenagers have oily, acneic skin! Well-balanced teen skin happens when the ingredients in products that are used on the skin are right for the type and condition of that skin. The esthetician must analyze the client's skin to determine the skin type. This determines what methods and ingredients are to be used during the facial, and what at-home care should be recommended. The skin condition is as equally important to know.   The condition tells us what is happening now. Are there break outs? Black heads? Is the skin overly sensitive? Dehydrated? Dry? Is there redness? Rosacea? Is there hyper-pigmentation? And is the client currently using products at home that is agitating or complementing their skin tone and condition?

So, what does skin type mean? Well, it's all about the pore size. A skin type cannot be changed- you're born with one skin type and that's it. You're locked in(skin condition, however, changes). 

  • Dry skin type: invisible pore size on the nose
  • Normal skin type: visible pores on the nose, forehead, and near the ears
  • Oily skin type: large, dilated pores on the nose, cheeks, forehead and usually chin
  • Combination: two different pore sizes, on different areas 

 

So, back to teen skin. Why are so many teenagers made to believe they are oily and acneic when they're not? Teenagers see commercials and ads that tell them they need to "fight acne and blackheads" with cleansers that have salicylic acid or other oil-fighting ingredients. These ingredients are amazing on the right skin and condition! But most people aren't aware of how ingredients react to type or condition. They figure, 'I'm a teen, I break out, I need to use this charcoal mask!' meanwhile, they don't really have a problem. So they use these products anyway because they figure that one pimple equals oily, acneic skin. Wrong. All of these active ingredients creates even drier skin on a dry skin type, making the skin desperate for oil so you'll see breakouts, redness and sensitivity, flaking and really dehydrated skin. The dry skin types out there need to wash once every 24 hours- and I recommend it is done at night. (Actually, I recommend to all my clients to shower or at least wash your face at night. Always) Cleansing at night guarantees happier skin! That's because a double cleanse at night, with the right cleanser for your skin type, removes the nano particles of pollution that wreak havoc while we sleep. What's a free radical? Generally, free radicals attack the nearest stable molecule, "stealing" its electron. When the "attacked" molecule loses its electron, it becomes a free radical itself, beginning a chain reaction. Once the process is started, it can cascade, finally resulting in the disruption of a living cell. Cleansing yourself of all of the typical agitators is great step to overall health and well-being. This goes for everybody. It washes off the day's grit, pollution, pollen, sweat, SPF, bacteria and lowers the chances of free radical damage to the skin. Next, applying an anti oxidant serum is also recommended to teens (or anyone). That's because antioxidants neutralize free radicals ending the electron-"stealing" reaction. Vitamins E and C are just two of many amazing antioxidants you can apply to your skin to help protect it. 

 

If you're interested in bringing your teen son or daughter in to see me, I will help them understand all of this and steer them in the right direction for, hopefully, a lifetime of excellent hygiene, self-care, and healthy, happy skin.

The reopening is almost here!

Well gang.

The good news is my renovation is nearly over! I am waiting for counter tops and a backsplash (and other finishing touches), but overall it is nearly finished. 

The bad news is, July has started and it doesn't look like I can open my doors until August.  This is way past what I was shooting for and I know that you, my amazing friends and clients, have been waiting so patiently.  

As you look around my new website, you will see some things have changed and got a little updated. You might also notice not much has changed at all.  My prices have remained the same and so has my skincare brand (Image).  I want you to know that I am going to do everything I can to make sure you receive the best customer service and satisfaction.  To reach this goal, I want to make sure the wait time between when you want a product to when you have the product is the 1 minute it takes to walk into another room to fetch it for you.  Therefor, I have invested in inventory of my best-sellers.  This way, you don't have to wait for your SPF anymore! 

I have also bought some new equipment, like a new massage table for facials and peels. The table is wider and more comfy.

Oh, and I also bought a new kitchen!  LOL!  That's mostly for me, but I guarantee, you will definitely feel and see the difference when you come over for services. The place feels more open and a lot more modern.  I can't wait for you to book with me and see.

Thanks again for your patience.  I will keep in touch and let you know when I am officially relaunched and reopened!

Be Well,

Shannon

Gotham Goddess will be under construction

Hey all-

I just wanted to let you know that I am closing down for business for about 6 weeks starting April 9th. During this time my home will be under construction and would make it impossible to see clients in my home during that time. House calls are possible for make up, brows, and peels. Also, I will be able to fulfill your Image Skincare orders as usual- so don't hesitate to reach out.  I will send out an announcement when I am back up for business!  

So, please, book your appointments now, before I close.  I won't be able to take facial clients until the end of May.

Be Well,

Shannon

Skin texture- improve it!

Regular facials and excellent skincare can improve your skin texture- that is a fact. But what do I mean by skin texture? The way your face feels and often times looks. It can include flakey, rough patches, a crepe-like appearance on the cheeks or around the eyes, and the skin is dry and rough to the touch.

Also, how does your skin feel on you? Does it feel tight and sometimes hot? Does it feel irritated and look red? All of these conditions can be caused by dry and dehydrated skin.  And skin sensitivity will heighten during this state. 

Here are products that I am loving right now that have, hands down, improved my skin this winter season.  In no particular order...


  Dermalogica Precleanse, 5.1 oz $40.00

Dermalogica Precleanse, 5.1 oz $40.00

Please do not remove your make up with your cleanser. The cleansing process must start with a gentle makeup removing step. During a facial, we call this a "double cleanse".  At home, we call it "taking your make up off".  Dermologica's Precleanse is a lightweight cleansing oil that emulsifies with a little bit of water. Massage on the face with dry hands/dry face and then add water and watch it become a milk and rinse away! Won't clog pores and removes every bit of your long day off your face. 


  Image Skincare Hyaluronic Acid, 1 oz $54.00

Image Skincare Hyaluronic Acid, 1 oz $54.00

Have you already heard the enormous buzz around this miracle serum? Hyaluronic Acid hit peak hysteria in 2015, but it still delivers and people still want this amazing product.  There is a reason this will be a skincare hall of famer.  Our bodies already make this acid naturally (the crusty gunk in our eyes every morning? Yup- that's HA) and so our skin happily accepts it. But what makes some Hyaluronic Acids better than others? Ability to penetrate. Generally speaking, the molecule is pretty big so you get a little penetration, but a nice, moisturizing barrier for your skin.  Image Skincare Hyaluronic Acid has a smaller molecule and a fantastic delivery system so it penetrates deeper, giving your skin a plumping effect and deep hydration. Hyaluronic Acid hold 1000x its weight in water- which is phenomenal when you think about how, as we age, we lose precious moisture. We are basically evaporating. Hyaluronic Acid is excellent for all skin types. Use alone and then follow with a moisturizer, or add it to your serum as an enhancer. 


  Burberry Fresh Glow Luminous Fluid, 1oz $48.00

Burberry Fresh Glow Luminous Fluid, 1oz $48.00

The  55% water-infused primer is why this has totally won my heart.  It feels different than other luminous primers- it's the water! I love this stuff.  It's light weight, blends like a dream and is NOT a foundation. It's a primer. My skin looks so incredibly smooth, hydrated, and healthy when I wear it.  Apply over your skincare and SPF.  Makeup is optional.  


  Ormedic Balancing Lip Enhancement, .25 oz. $18.00

Ormedic Balancing Lip Enhancement, .25 oz. $18.00


Peptides, organic avocado oil, and tons of anti-oxidants protect, soften and plumps up lips. Say goodbye to chapped lips and fine lines around the mouth! Yay!

  Smashbox Hydrating Under Eye Primer, .33oz $29.00

Smashbox Hydrating Under Eye Primer, .33oz $29.00

Base layers are key to hydration and a smooth appearance.  This under eye primer reduces puffiness and under eye discoloration while providing amazing hydration. I use this on myself and my clients. Amazing results!


  Image Skincare Iluma Exfoliating Powder, 1.5oz $31.00

Image Skincare Iluma Exfoliating Powder, 1.5oz $31.00

Sometimes that dull, dry texture on your face is simply dead skin sitting on top. And as we get older, the new cells deep below need encouraging to come up to the surface!  One way you can do that is by exfoliating one or two times a week.  This powder has pumpkin enzymes (they eat away the dead skin layer) and Lactic Acid (milk) which soften the skin. Rice and pearl powder brightens and lightens the skin, aiding in a more youthful appearance (if you like that kind of thing). Place a teaspoon of powder into your wet palm, massage to create a creamy lather and massage all over your face, neck, and décolletage.  I love using this in the shower. (Another benefit is your skincare will penetrate better.) 


  Image Skincare the MAX Stem Cell Creme, 1.7 oz $99.00

Image Skincare the MAX Stem Cell Creme, 1.7 oz $99.00

Here's the night cream! I would be remiss if I didn't tell you what I'm currently using at night. I switch up my serums a lot, but I am truly digging this cream this winter.  It is thick, creamy, heavy (in a really good way), and no scent. My skin is like butter in the morning.  Plant and flower stem cells go deep and protect the new cells. These stem cells combat and prevent the effects of aging on the skin.  My skin looks and feels amazing.  Why the steep price tag? The ingredients are off the hook: tripeptides- one in particular has a Botox effect on the muscle and relaxes them- therefor lines cannot take hold. The delivery system is a Vectorize- Technology: ingredients in a sphere that releases over 48 hours! And that's the tip of the iceberg. 


 

We made it!

Holy Cow!

Wasn't 2016 a blast? In spite of all the tragedy here at home and across the globe, I personally am very grateful for the wonderful year I had. I graduated from school and received my NY state esthetician's license and branched out into facials, peels and skincare. My clients and friends responded with enthusiasm and booked! I was doing facials all the time and it was wonderful.

My latest passion are facial peels and I am rolling them out for 2017. My peels will last 30 minutes and it will include the hands too! Not only will your skin glow, but your hands will too.

Stay tuned for a post about peels and why they are so amazing and why I think you should try one!

Shannon

Teen Skin

I have vivid childhood memories of my mother's moisturizer. Oil of Olay. It was pink and came in a square glass bottle. I can faintly remember the smell of it—it's pretty visceral. 

Her skincare regimen, however limited, influenced me to pick one up too. My first experience with moisturizer was when I was a freshman in college. But that’s all I knew. I had horrible skin and no coping skills, so I thought I should go to a dermatologist. My chin and jaw were covered with break-outs, so he prescribed an oral antibiotic, Retin-A, and suggested I use Clinique's 3 step cleansing program. That system hasn’t changed to this day. It still consists of that yellow bar of soap, clarifying lotion, and the moisturizer, known as “Dramatically Different.”

As it turned out, this protocol was not a good fit for me at all. I was very disappointed. I went to a doctor and still did not get what I needed—better skin. The antibiotics wreaked havoc on my mind and gut. So I discontinued that. The Retin-A never should have been prescribed for me—especially without giving me any guidelines! Retin-A (the over the counter term is retinol) is a powerful Vitamin A cream that is under the category of a "peeling system" because it literally peels your upper epidermis off. And without sunscreen, it can cause a terrible burn, rash, or hyper-pigmentation. Retinol has its place and I do use it and recommend it to clients who are right for it, but it was absolutely the wrong thing for me at the time.

What I understand now is that if I had found an esthetician to work with, she would have analyzed my skin, exfoliated away all the dead skin, and recommended a skincare regimen for my skin type. It would have been a place to start and I would have been golden. But I never knew that estheticians are wonderful allies when you're young. In my world, no one got facials. My mother sure didn’t.

Today, years later, I see the difference it makes with my own teenaged children to have regular facials and have access to cosmeceuticals—which are stronger than over-the-counter, but gentler than prescription strength. A dermatologist should be the last stop on your skin care journey. Not the first.

Teen skin is susceptible to hormones and terrible lifestyle choices like a bad diet, lack of sleep, stress, poor hygiene, and lack of knowledge regarding spreading bacteria. They see a pimple as a challenge – how soon can they pop it? They have no idea that pimple is a localized infection. You pop that sucker and you have released millions of bacteria cells all over the rest of your skin, which then becomes a pimple factory.

Your kid might not listen to you, but she'll listen to me. I want your child to have confidence! I want your child to live life without embarrassment about bad skin. I have the tools and knowledge to teach tweens and teens how to care for their skin, how to create good hygiene habits, and how to use (quality) make-up to camouflage any problems in the meantime.

My mom might have given me the idea that skin is something to take care of, but, like most moms, she didn’t know enough about teen skin to help beyond that. You probably don’t either.

That’s where I come in. Together, we troubleshoot strategies that work for her and her lifestyle. There is not a one-size-fits-all regimen for anybody. When you bring your daughter to me, I assess their lifestyle with a thorough intake and discuss with them an action plan. They are included in the process and so are you! 

Check out my packages for teens:

The DemiGoddess Facial  $50.00: 30 minute facial includes cleansing, exfoliation, skin analysis and gentle extractions (if needed), and a masque specific for their skin type and condition. Detailed instruction on how to use complimentary product samples. Total appointment time 45 minutes.  Excellent for someone who needs a little help with hygiene and a gentle nudge toward better skincare habits.     

DemiGoddess Skincare & Makeup 101 $99.00 : 30 minute facial+30 minute make up boot camp.   This package includes cleansing, exfoliation, skin analysis and gentle extractions (if needed), and a masque specific for their skin type and condition. After, I show her very basic techniques for covering a pimple and applying light, age appropriate make up. I explain how to properly cleanse skin with her new skincare regimen. Complimentary samples included. Excellent for someone who breaks out regularly and feels a little insecure about what to do.

 

Facials, Skincare and why it matters

After receiving about three facials a week for the four months I was in Esthetician school, I learned a few of things.  First, pairing the right ingredients to your specific skin type and condition (there is a difference!) is KEY to getting optimum results from your skincare. If you are  "Meh" about your cleanser or moisturizer, chances are they are not a good fit for YOU and your skin TYPE and CONDITION. The second thing I learned is facials really, really help the way your skin on your face responds to products you put on it and ultimately looks. Yes, it's true, your face will look better with good skincare and a couple of facials, let's say for now, a year.  Lastly, delivery systems matter. What does that mean? Delivery systems are what carry the antioxidant or peptide or lighteners to the lower layers of the epidermis. You can load up a car with gorgeous, expensive things, but unless that car has gas and get it to where it needs to go, the cargo is useless.  You have to have products that can deliver the goods to where they need to go. Period.

So what does an Esthetician do exactly?  Aesthetics is a branch of anatomical science that deals with the overall health and well-being of the skin. Estheticians are specialists in the cleansing, beautification and preservation of the health of the skin- especially the face and the neck.  I have been trained to identify any issues with the skin and figure out a way to solve them.

I received my NY state license in March and I have been slowly inviting women into my home for facials at a very reasonable cost.  My job is to analyze your skin and recommend products that have ingredients to enhance and improve the appearance and quality of your skin.  As a make up artist, I have always used make up to camoflauge issues like aging, blemishes, discoloration  (hyper-pigmentation), under eye issues like bags, dryness, fine lines and dark circles. Make up is great. But proper skincare is even better. The two go hand in hand.                 I never imagined I would love being an esthetician as much as I do! My clients and I are growing up together and I want us to have access to non surgical ways to improve our skin and its appearance.  And it is possible!

I hope you will trust me with your skincare needs and book a facial with me this summer.  I am running a very special offer. An hour long facial for $60.00.  Please call or email to take advantage of this excellent value and see what it does for you!

Be Well

-GG

Gotham Goddess- a great gift idea!

Thank you to New York City's own online newspaper, DNAinfo, for suggesting my services as an excellent holiday treat for a recipient who loves to be pampered! Visit my services page for a full rundown of what I offer. 

If you want to visit me at the Bread and Yoga Holiday Market- I am booking appointments now for December 12th.                                                                            

Email me: GothamGoddessNYC@gmail.com



Update

How did that lip stain idea work out? If any of you reading this tried it out- let me know. I did it today!  NYC was 20 degrees and windy and I had to go outside and pick my daughter up and take her to piano. I tried my own advice and chose a cheerful, creamy color - Revlon's Cherry in the Snow.

 

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As you can see its a cream and would be all over my face and clothing after bundling up for the cold. 

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I blotted and wiped the majority of the lipstick off and had a really soft, stained mouth. I loved it. And it didn't get all over my turtle fur. Watery eyes, runny nose and stay-put lip color.

Make up used today:

Laura Mercier Illuminating Natural Radiance Tinted Moisturizer, Make Up For Ever Full Cover Waterproof concealer, NARS Douceur blush, Revlon Cherries in the Snow lipstick-as-stain.