A night with L’Oreal in NYC

Hi friends!

Something a bit different for today. I had the pleasure of attending an event this past Wednesday night featuring a talk with Jean-Paul Agon, the CEO & Chairman of the L’Oreal Group. If you’re brand new to the beauty scene, L’Oreal is a huge global beauty & fashion empire that owns countless other brands you’re probably very familiar with including Urban Decay, Giorgio Armani, Maybelline, Clarisonic, Essie, Redken, Garnier & Pureology just to name a small fraction.

I bought my ticket for this event back in late summer since I was so intrigued by the theme of the discussion, “Beauty for the New World.” I’m always interested in what industry professionals have to say about the future of beauty. And from the head of L’Oreal no less, so I knew I had to go.

The talk was hosted by the CEW (Cosmetic Executive Women) Organization at The Harmonie Club in NYC. This place was swanky, let me tell you! Right by Central Park on the Upper East Side, I’m sure you get the picture now 😉. It was a 2 1/2 hour event. The first hour was cocktails & hor d’oeuvres (food & service were great but I felt a little awkward since I went to this event solo and didn’t really know anyone), and then the talk and q&a with Jean-Paul filled out the rest of the time slot.

cewevent2
View from my seat before the talk started.
cewevent1
It was quite a crowded event.

The first thing I noticed when I sat down in the event space was the massive swag bag on each seat! I felt like I hit the jackpot (even though I kinda paid for it with my ticket price, but moving on)! There was cool stuff from a few L’Oreal brands like IT Cosmetics, Lancome & Kiehl’s. Take a look below.

lancomemascara
A Lancome mini set with the Monsieur Big Mascara & Cils Booster XL Primer. I’ve used the Monsieur Big Mascara before and wasn’t particularly wowed. But I’ll give it another try with the Cils Booster underneath.
kiehlsmoisturizer
This is a hero moisturizer for a lot of people but I’ve never tried it so I’m excited to start using it going into winter.
itcosmeticspalette
The IT Cosmetics Naturally Pretty Palette. A soft, neutral lovers dream. All shades are matte except for the ‘Transforming’ pearlized shade in the bottom right corner.
itcosmeticsbrushes
IT Cosmetics brush kit with travel pouch. It came wrapped up like a gift. I started using some of these right away, and wow are they soft & beautiful!
lancometresorbox
Lancome gift set box
lancometresorinside
La Nuit Tresor Scented Body Lotion, Fragrance & Shower Gel. Not sure I will use any of this so I might save it for a giveaway in the future.

Jean-Paul has been with L’Oreal for 40 years so his perspective on the beauty industry and how it’s changed was very interesting. From the ‘70’s until about 2010 he claimed the way L’Oreal did business didn’t really change much. But then the digital revolution happened and nothing was ever the same. He views the onslaught of technology not as a threat to the beauty business but as an exciting opportunity. For example, the consumer is now at the heart of all products & decisions that are made at L’Oreal, whereas prior to the digital revolution it was products & services that were at the center of decision-making. Throughout his talk he was emphatic on the point that big companies must be ready for change and should try to anticipate it as much as possible. When asked what he hopes his legacy at L’Oreal will be, he said he wanted to be remembered as someone who readied the company for the future as much as possible.

There were some other interesting tidbits I took from the talk. Back in 2001 when Jean-Paul last spoke at a CEW event, an audience member called him out on the fact that L’Oreal was still a “boys club” and had little to no females in high positions of authority. Seventeen years later, things have evolved and now L’Oreal is lauded in the industry for gender equality and pay parity. And when they bought Kiehl’s in 2000 it was a humble $20 million business; news flash it’s now valued at over $1 billion!

What do you think of L’Oreal? Do you like or dislike their products? I’d love to know!

xo, Erica

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Come with me to a special event with the CEO of L’Oreal

 

 

Instagram images that inspired me this week, Vol. 2

As a follow-up to my post from last month, here is another round of cool images from Instagram this week! If you’re not familiar with my first post, it’s a very simple premise: I pick images that I feel are particularly beautiful and/or inspirational in some way, feature them here and tell you why I love them. That’s it. Considering this is a beauty blog and most of the accounts I follow on IG are those of other beauty bloggers, brands, publications, influencers, etc, most of the images are beauty-related (what a surprise?). But I do like throwing in some randoms here and there.

I hope you are as wowed by these images as I am, so let’s get into it!

bobbibrown

Since October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month I think it’s only fitting to include this post from Bobbi Brown in this list. You’ll be hard pressed to find any person or family that hasn’t been touched in some way by this horrible disease, so it’s important to remember what the fight is against. These particular lipsticks are part of Bobbi Brown’s Pinks with a Purpose Lip Color Duo, where they will donate $17 for every $45 Lip Duo purchase to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation. I think that’s awesome.

 

buxomcosmetics

Two things that drew me to this image: the hues of rose-pink & burgundy and the textures. I loooovveee the whole autumn color palette both in makeup & fashion. Sign me up for more deep pinks, plums, burgundys, golds, warm browns & reds, please.

 

doseofcolors

Don’t you just love all the glitter?? This image stopped me mid-scroll and I knew I had to screenshot it. Between the deep (but still bright) glittery eyes, the sheen on the skin, and the twinkle on the lips, it’s like magic. Of course I know that this has been filtered within an inch of its life, Photoshopped/manipulated, but don’t ruin my fantasy. I still love it anyway for what it is. Plus I really like Dose of Colors; they’re a kick-ass indie brand that does some high-quality products.

 

ohglowygirl

Did I mention already that I love texture? Well I do, so #texturetuesday on IG is a fun day for me. I love almost everything that skincare & beauty blogger @ohglowygirl posts, but these kinds of images are particular favorites of mine. We see so many photos of outer packaging, it’s nice to see what’s going on inside sometimes. I love the overall beigey tone of the photo and how the colors of each product play off each other.

 

ragenjewels

I’ve been following the jewelry brand Ragen Jewels on IG since this summer and their whole aesthetic just speaks to me. They do dainty jewelry very well and their prices are quite affordable to boot. I love the mix of traditional golds & silvers with bright pops of color, like in the piece above. Any image with stacked or layered jewelry catches my eye to be honest. And I’m a sucker for any piece with the ‘evil eye’ design; I have a few already in my collection (although not from this brand…yet). The ‘evil eye’ is a huge design element for this brand, so if you’re into that kind of thing you should really check them out here.

 

ohprettythings

This image is just so gorgeous and luxurious to me, yet it seems somewhat retro at the same time, which I assume is down to the fabulous editing skills of makeup artist Jessica or @Ohuprettythings as she’s known on IG. The play of white and black against each other is great. I love a good flat-lay not only because I’m a product junkie but also because it’s a little voyeuristic to me I guess. I just love to see what others are using, what backgrounds they have, etc; almost a peek into someone’s life. You might think the lighter sitting in the middle is a bit strange and out of place, but it nearly blends in with the rest of the image and it adds something a bit personal IMO.

 

milkmakeup

This image speaks to my girly-girl side. Can you guess why? If you can’t, don’t worry I’ll tell you: pink & purple of course! That’s what immediately drew me in but then the high-shine or gloss on both the eyes and lips is what kept my attention. I’m not bothered either way by the expression on the model’s face; to me it’s all about the colors and textures. I’m a real fan of a glossy editorial-looking eye, and the “broken” quality of this (i.e. the nude eyelid with the gloss up to the browbone) makes the image just more interesting to look at frankly.

 

thebeautyidentity

Remember when I said earlier that autumn colors & tones are kinda my thing? Well now you know why this image from Samantha or @thebeautidentity got me excited! I love the staging of this and the shadows that the light is throwing; the products are perfectly aligned and in focus and it seems like the sun is either rising or setting. I also have that eye palette from Dose of Colors (in Baked Browns) and it’s so incredibly lovely. I must use it more!

 

sezane

This is my random pick, but it was a must. In college I went through a serious James Dean phase and enthusiastically read several books on him, watched all his movies (only 3 sadly) and even some of his early TV work. Anything that I could find either on DVD or on YouTube in the early days. I even did a presentation on his life & work in one of my communications classes. I was obsessed. When I saw this image it brought me right back to that time in my life. Rebel Without a Cause was probably my favorite work of his; it’s just so iconic, isn’t it? Little trivia fact: the actress that played Jerry Seinfeld’s mother on Seinfeld actually dated James Dean in the early ‘50’s before he was famous and even wrote a book about it (which I’ve read of course).

What images have inspired you recently, from Instagram or elsewhere? I’d love to know!

Xo, Erica

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Check out the IG images I’m loving this week!

Instagram images that inspired me this week

Happy Friday! To transition us gently into weekend mode, I thought I’d do something a bit different today. I’d like to share with you all some of the Instagram images in the beauty category that stopped me in my tracks this week and made me go, wow! I find these all to be visually striking images in different ways depending on the personality behind the account (hopefully this will make more sense later). I gathered a nice mix of images from social media influencers, YouTubers, makeup brands, beauty editors and bloggers. To be honest I could have picked so many more than I did, but I decided to cut it off at 9 images. I’d love to periodically do posts like this in the future; perhaps they won’t always be beauty-related either. I like the idea of sharing beautiful images that perhaps will introduce you to accounts you didn’t know of or follow before.

I’m going to try to keep my commentary to a minimum here so the images do most of the talking but I’ll let you know along the way just why I think these particular images are noteworthy and who is behind the account.

3ceigphoto

I’ve been following the Korean makeup brand 3CE or 3 Concept Eyes on Instagram for a while now. I love almost all the imagery they put up mainly because it seems to focus more on beautiful, luxurious skin rather than dramatic eye looks. Also their reverse-ombre lip looks, a huge Korean makeup trend with the highest concentration of pigment towards the center of the lips, are just so gorgeous. Look at how dark that lipstick is in the tube but how soft it looks on the lips.

alexsteinherrigphoto

OK this is not beauty related, but just look at that rainbow! Alessandra Steinherr has been the Beauty Director of Glamour Magazine for the past decade and is a recent beauty blogger as well. She regularly posts interesting content and does lives quite frequently so if you’re not following her already, I recommend doing so.

byrdiebeautyigphoto

Byrdie is a great destination for all things beauty, lifestyle and wellness and their Instagram is always on point. For some reason I find myself gravitating more towards their posts on nails and manicures. In my dreams I’d get a manicure like the one pictured in this image. How beautiful, elegant and fairytale is this? And may I say, I appreciate the shorter nails. I think this would take on a whole different vibe if the nails pictured here were longer.

emanigphoto

This image is like Instagram perfection, isn’t it? Eman does great glam looks on YouTube if you haven’t heard of her before. I think the element that really struck me about this particular image was the different tones of blue used on her eyes. Even though her skin and lips looks flawless here, the focus is still all on those colorful, smokey eyes. Gorgeous.

katiejanehughesigphoto

I love, love, love the makeup artist Katie Jane Hughes. Not just her style but her whole makeup philosophy is appealing to me. Just look at the caption on this image and you’ll get an idea of what I’m talking about. She’s extremely active on Instagram and does lives and videos almost every day, sometimes multiple times a day. Her focus is often on juicy, healthy-looking skin and she shares helpful tips on both skincare and makeup application especially for hooded eyes. She’s definitely one to follow.

glossierigphoto

I still haven’t tried anything from Glossier yet (tear), but I’ve known for the longest time that the first product I’m likely to buy will be the Cloud Paint. It’s just so me! Easy-to-use cream, sheer blush that looks natural on the skin? Sign me up. I just have so many cream blushes at the moment, I can’t justify the purchase right now. Instead I’ll satisfy myself with looking at cool images like this.

glamourgigglesigphoto

I actually first discovered beauty and lifestyle blogger Priyanka Patel from Glamour & Giggles on Pinterest before I followed her on Instagram. Her blog is awesome, excellent recommendations and product reviews. I love the staging of this particular image. Everything about it is striking to me. The black and white of the Sephora bags against the pale pink color of the chair. And those cool makeup organizers and brush holders in the background. Even the tissue paper looks perfectly staged!

pixiwoosigphoto

I couldn’t not include an image from makeup artist Sam Chapman, aka one-half of Pixiwoo on YouTube. I’ve been watching her videos and tutorials since 2011; she’s one of the reasons I really got into makeup in fact. Like Katie Jane Hughes, her makeup philosophy is the primary reason I respect her. She often incorporates broken or disheveled elements into her makeup to give it a more authentic and relatable feel. I feel like this image gives both glam and understated vibes at the same time, which is awesome.

overgloweditigphoto

I love everything that skincare and beauty blogger Melanie at Overglow Edit does pretty much. I adore the aesthetic and overall vibe of both her Instagram feed and her blog. She kills it at snapping and editing her product overlays, and giving us little tidbits of info on the skincare she’s using. I’m not much of a skincare blogger since I rarely change up my very simple routine (although I did incorporate a new product just recently), so I enjoy hearing what others who much more knowledgeable, like her, have to say. I could have picked any image from her feed to feature here honestly, so I just picked one of her more recent posts. I love the pairing of the books & the greenery with the beauty products.

What images from Instagram or elsewhere have inspired you recently? Beauty or otherwise? I’d love to know!

xo, Erica