Beauty Inspiration



Okay so I’m not very good at picking out skin products, I don’t have the kind of skin where I can wash it once a day or with just generic face wash. I have oily skin one second and dry skin the next so you can see my dilemma and terror when I’m out shopping and see a zillion different products! The only solution that has worked for me over the last 10 years of my life is that I found a faithful esthetician! Lucky for me she is my good friend Kristyn Smith esthetician and owner of Smith & Brit Boutique and Spa in NYC.

For my birthday I received a package in the mail with some hand picked beauty products from Kristyn and Kelsey that include Native Atlas* Daily Complexion Active Ionic Cleansing Bar and the Clarifying Face Oil, Moon Juice Beauty Dust Packet, and “Un” Cover-up by RMS Beauty. I LOVE all of these products and feel with my hormonal baby induced moods and skin break outs anything helps! I love having friends that know what you need before you even do and besides who doesn’t LOVE to get stuff in the mail!

If you are looking for an esthetician that can give you advice on your skin, or would like to look into facial treatments, brow waxing, and you live in NYC then need to hit up Smith & Brit!

Lastly, another fun way to try different beauty products is subscribing to Birchbox a monthly makeup and skincare box for women that is tailored to your own beauty style and needs or you can choose a subscription for men that is just for men.


Hair: Kelsey Hughes

Makeup: Kristyn Smith (Smith & Brit)

Venue: Lombardi House 



In + On: Floors + Spring Looks

I’ve been scouring the internet for a new rug for my office. I’m super drawn to this leopard rug, but what’s new? It’s just my obvious animal obsession.

One thing I find incredibly funny about my rug style, is that I don’t like the look of “new” as much. There is just something cozy about a rug that has a little fading or warn look to it. Also, aren’t rugs a sort of wintery feel? During the summer I don’t mind for my floors to be bare, but during winter rugs are a must!

I am not ready for summer yet. I love crisp spring weather, and the clothes that go with it. Plus, after a year of not working out the last thing you want to do is shop for shorts. I love three elements to spring wear that you won’t see during the southern california summer; jeans, sweaters & leather jackets.

Alas, 3 days of 80 + weather and I think shorts, tanks & swimwear are looming. I’m rounding up my favorites for the next post so don’t miss it!

(Links & credit for all the inspiration images can be found on my Inspiration Den Board.)

10.11 Makeup an Artist Interview + Look-Book

I’m so excited to be interviewing Erica (makeup artist and hair stylist for 10.11 Makeup today) in the DEN!!  I love makeup. It’s so neat how you can throw on some mascara and a fun lipstick and it can totally transform your look. I’ve been obsessed with bold lips lately and have been wearing out a bright pink hue for weeks now and of course another staple is the classic fire engine red! Also, another make-up must and personal trademark would have to be my black liquid eye liner. I pretty much don’t leave the house without it! Erica has such a talent in making a bride or client look their best by bringing out their natural beauty. Here’s a quote directly from Erica explaining exactly what she does: “Every woman is beautiful and to be able to help a woman not only see, but appreciate, their own beauty is so motivating and humbling”. That said, please enjoy today’s interview with Erica from 10.11 Makeup!


Photography By Swoon By Katie

Amber: The Inspiration Den//Erica: TEN.ELEVEN MAKEUP

Amber: Can you tell our readers a little bit about yourself and your journey to becoming a make up artist + hair stylist?

Erica: I have always wanted to be a hair stylist and makeup artist… I used to play “hair dresser” with my papa when I was little, dressing him up with plastic pink barrettes and making him climb into my salon aka my cabbage patch playhouse. Right out of high school I wanted to go to cosmetology school, but with a strong encouragement from my dad I went to college first. I actually went all the way through getting my Master’s Degree in Marketing. I started working and just couldn’t stop thinking about hair/makeup, so I went to cosmetology school and started 10.11 Makeup while I was in school. By the time I graduated I had my entire season booked with weddings and was able to go full-time with my company. I now have six girls that work with 10.11 and we are continuing to grow far surpassing anything I could have dreamed it would become.

Amber: What does Ten.Eleven stand for?

Erica: My husband actually came up with it. It stems from Ecclesiastes 4: 9-12, verses 10 and 11 seemed appropriate for the wedding industry.

Amber: What motivates you and inspires your work?

Erica: It is such an honor and privilege to be able to do what I love for a living, and to be a part of such a significant part of a person’s life. 10.11 focuses on the Wedding Industry, and to play a role, even if it is a small role, in someone’s wedding is an incredibly honoring experience.  Every client is different and every client inspires us.  Every woman is beautiful and to be able to help a woman not only see, but appreciate, their own beauty is so motivating and humbling.

Amber: What are your current top 5 favorite beauty products?

Erica: I am really an advocate for education, so we are continuously taking classes and educating ourselves on different products and techniques. I think my favorites can sometimes change, but right now my favorite products are :

  • Makeup Forever HD Microfinish Powder- it is silky smooth, works on all skin tones as a translucent powder. It has a smoothing ability for the skin AND it is HD- it is amazing.
  • Embryolisse Lait-Crème Concentre – This is a moisturizing cream great for all skin types. It is incredibly moisturizing but not too heavy, and fun fact- you can also use it as a makeup remover.
  • Kenra Hairspray – any hold, I love their styling sprays. The product isn’t too wet, and it is workable in the sense that you can spray and style  as you go, but you can also use it as a finishing  pray. Plus it smells great.
  • EOS Lip Balm- easy to find at local drug stores or Target. It is paraben and petrolatum free and is full of moisture building agents. Plus they have yummy flavors and a cool design.
  • My two fave mascaras: Covergirl Lash Blast for your drugstore option, and Benefit’s They’re Real mascara. Both are volumizing mascaras that also lengthen the lash. I love the wands on both mascaras, the tip of the Benefit wand is great for the inside and corner lashes, and the price of the Covergirl is great.Studio Castillero_0399

Photography By Studio Castillero

Amber: How would you describe your work? What sets you apart from other make-up artists?

Erica: I would say 10.11 is known for our beauty makeup, enhancing the natural beauty of our clients, and keeping them looking, and feeling, like themselves. Even our smokey eyes are soft and blended, no harsh lines.  All of the girls on the team are licensed cosmetologist and certified makeup artists, and that is a requirement to be on the team. I wouldn’t say this “sets us apart” but the thing I LOVE the most about my team is everyone loves what they do, is passionate about it, and seriously have the best senses of humor. I love laughter, and all my girls are funny it is my favorite.

Amber: I’m a coffee addict myself… What is your favorite coffee shop + drink of choice?

Erica: Oh, I love me some coffee… I have found that the hole in the wall shops, or local shops tend to have the best tasting coffee. Right now my go to coffee is Mexican coffee it has cinnamon and chocolate, and is basically the best thing ever  I live in Northern California, even though my business is located in Southern California, so my favorite shop in Nor Cal is The Orchard Valley Coffee Shop, and my favorite in Southern California  is It’s a Grind their mocha is ridiculous and 85 Degrees Celsius – they have a sea salt coffee that you will dream about!


I NEED to try this Sea Salt Coffee creation from 85 Degrees Celsius and I love the new cosmetic recs! Gotta try those! Thank Erica for letting us feature you in The Inspiration Den!

If your interested in seeing more from Erica check her website or follow here on Twitter + FB!

Website // Twitter // Facebook

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