For this week’s Beauty Adventure, we had the pleasure of speaking to Asya Varshisky, who works in business development at Sotheby’s and is a proud beauty enthusiast. She tells us about her passion for doing makeup and the joy it can bring.

“I always loved makeup. As a little girl, I would convince my mom to let me give her makeovers. Growing up in Greenwich, Connecticut, I would always head over to Saks Fifth Avenue and talk to the women by the cosmetics counters. There, I educated myself on all there is to know about beauty. I eventually became such a beauty expert that people started asking me for advice.

If my friends were feeling a little down – guy problems, work issues – I would cheer them up by doing their makeup. I found that these little makeover sessions were very therapeutic. It would really put both my friends and me in a better mood. I think it is a very giving and nurturing act to do someone’s makeup.

When my best friend, Liz told me she was getting married in Verona, Italy, I knew exactly what to offer her as a present: a class for both of us at the legendary Kimara makeup studio. We learned a few new tricks, like doing eyelash extensions, and discovered new color palettes. I have been doing her make-up for the past ten years, so I was the natural choice to prepare her for her wedding day. I did a soft makeup using tinted moisturizer, Cle de Peau concealer and a Kimara eye shadow palette. She looked beautiful. It was such a special experience, I am so happy to have been able to share it with my best friend.”


1. Laura Mercier Rose Hope Lip Glace – All of the profits from the sale of this gloss go to the Laura Mercier Ovarian Cancer Fund. $24

2. MAC Viva Glam It Up Bag – A cute clutch featuring Nicki Minaj’s pink satiny lipstick and Ricky Martin’s Lip Conditioner. All proceeds go towards men, women and children living with and affected by HIV/AIDS. $30

3. LUSH Cosmetics’ Charity Pot – Creamy cocoa butter body lotion, with every cent going to supporting grassroots charities all around the world. $22.95

4. Philosophy’s WhyHunger To Believe Charity Shampoo, Shower Gel & Bubble Bath – A multitasking gel that is rich and moisturizing, with 100% of proceeds benefiting the fight against world hunger. $20

5. Julep Winter Collection 2012 Set – Five gorgeous, festive nail colors. A perfect stocking stuffer, with a portion of proceeds going towards organizations that support women. $34

6. GIVESCENT Signature Roll-On Bottle – A lovely scent with a portion of proceeds benefiting Women for Women International. $40

7. Chantecaille Fun Elephant Cheek Shade – Soft, shimmery apricot blush with 5% of proceeds donated to The David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust. $38

8. Estee Lauder: Evelyn Lauder and Elizabeth Hurley Dream Lip Collection – Cute pink clutch that comes with chic lipstick and gloss. Estee Lauder will donate 20% of sales to The Breast Cancer Research Foundation. $29.50

Jen’s Red Lip Report

By Jennifer Hakimian


I’ve always admired a woman who wears red lipstick. There’s something so mesmerizing about a white smile framed with perfectly shaped red lips. The woman in red takes over the room. She is confident, elegant, sophisticated and leaves me wondering, “how does she do it?”

I get bit by the red lipstick bug at least once a year and it’s usually around the holiday season. Images of holiday glamour flood my mind. This is my turn; I can wear red! I begin my hunt for that perfect shade of red, there is no other beauty objective that day. It’s all about the lips. I don’t want it too orange or too purple, just red. I test them out on my hands, and a few make it to my lips. Each one getting smudged off leaving me with red-stained swollen lips and a handful of red tissues in my pocket. I always need a plan B,  so I purchase a handful of perfect tubes of redness, each shade more magnificent than the next. I return home giddy dreaming up an outfit to go along with my new red lips. Eyes must be soft and defined, cheeks barely there. Simple black or white attire and sleek ironed hair. Thoughts of my evening out, as the new me, dance through my mind.

I love red. Red is beauty. I have a board on Pinterest dedicated to Red Beauty. It’s my favorite board. Red evokes power, strength, seduction and desire. Our Pampadour offices have red walls. The red inspires me and, strangely enough, comforts me. In coming up with a color scheme for our website, we chose red as one of the main colors. It’s on all of our call-to-action buttons: PampIt, AddIt, TagIt: all red. It is the one thing I would never change, our Pamp red. We recently acquired a piece of art for our office (“O” by Hans Uder). She is a woman with fire red hair and red lips. Red has definitely become part of Pampadour’s theme.

Here’s the best part. I’ve never actually succeeded in wearing it. Somewhere between my vanity table and the front door I get a passing glimpse of myself in the mirror and realize that the woman in the reflection isn’t me. I’m uncomfortable. Funny how a shade of color that I adore can make me feel so wrong when it’s on my face. I wipe off the rich beautiful hue with a tissue and replace it with my favorite shade of nude. Maybe next time.


Growing up in Australia, Poppy King was frustrated that she couldn’t find a perfect red lipstick. Colors faded quickly, the texture was either greasy or too thick. What could a precocious, spunky 18 year old do? Start her own brand, of course! Launched in 1992, ‘Poppy’ became a runaway success.

After years of ups and downs, Poppy’s launched a new collection in 2010 called Lipstick Queen, with a wide variety of long-lasting lipsticks and glosses divided in two groups, Saints and Sinners. The Saints are sheer and have only 10%  pigment in them to give you a hint of color, whereas the Sinners are 90% pigment and opaque in texture.

Last year, Poppy continued her comeback by collaborating with J.Crew on a red-orange lipstick that was universally flattering, and sold out in a week, and she released a book, Lessons of a Lipstick Queen.

Also, just in time for the holidays, Lipstick Queen released its ’70s inspired Dancing Queen collection, which you can purchase here: Dancing Queen.


Blogger Leandra Medine, better known as the Man Repeller, brought to the forefront the fact that men and women don’t always agree on what is beautiful in fashion. This certainly applies to beauty and got us thinking: “Are there any beauty looks that women ‘adour’ that actually repel men?” We surveyed seventy men to find out what looks drive them crazy (in a bad way). Turns out a red lip didn’t do too bad, while cakey foundation is a definite no-no. Ladies, would you ever guess that bangs would be in the top three?!

Here are the results:

1. Visible Foundation

2. Nail Art

3. Bangs

4. Short Hair

5. Blue Nails

6. Hair Extensions

7. Red Lips

8. Smoky Eyes

9. Rosy Cheeks

10. Eyelash Extensions


Tom Ford understands women. And the man knows that there is no accessory more dramatic and empowering than the perfect red lip. Just in time for the holidays, Ford has launched his Jasmin Rouge Lip Color Collection, which features four lush new shades. Exotic ingredients such as soja seed extract, Brazilian murumuru butter and chamomilla flower oil make Tom Ford’s lipsticks uniquely luxurious and decadent. With its ultra-creamy texture and glamorous colors, it is a must-have stocking stuffer this holiday season.


In New York, each neighborhood comes with a certain style – from the prim and proper Uptown Girl to the hipster Blooklyn chick. When Ashley Turen opened A. Turen, a fashion and concept store in the Lower East Side, three years ago she quickly fell in love with the scene, and it began to inspire her.

I’ve always been a beauty junkie. Something I must have inherited from my mom and my grandmother, who was in fact a beauty queen in Alabama. I can spend hours in Sephora and C.O. Bigelow trying on new products. I’m especially obsessed with skincare products. I guess it came with the territory, but I used to be totally primped and polished. I would get manicures at Dashing Diva, had fake tan addictions, and loved getting my weekly blowout. My eyebrows always had to be meticulous, and I would get eyelash extensions. I would even occasionally have professionals come over to do my makeup!

When I moved further downtown, things started changing. I opened up my store on the Lower East Side, and quickly became immersed in the cool, relaxed scene. I always considered myself a downtown girl, but I was undeniably high maintenance.  I became drawn to the effortless LES style. I still love beauty, but it’s a different kind of look; I gave up on the idea of being ‘coiffed’ or too coiffed rather. Lower East Side girls veer towards an edgier look: eclectic nail art, tattoos, lots of eyeliner and even neon hair. One trend that’s really “in” is to use dry shampoo in lieu of regular shampoo – it gives you a dirty, grungy do.

I gave up some beauty luxuries when my style changed, but one perk I will never let go of is facials, something I discovered in my college years when I began breaking out (probably due to the unhealthy lifestyle of drinking and eating junk). Facials are really lifesavers for my skin.

One of my favorite downtown trends is nail art. I fell in love with it when I lived across the street from the famous Sakura nail salon. In fact, I loved it so much that I recently brought nail artist to the stars Momo to my store to do her special magic. It’s such a fun and creative experience – if I have a nail art idea, Momo will create it for me. It’s become my own version of a pop-up nail salon. From there, I decided to bring fabulous makeup artist Rosie Rodriguez to station in the back of my store, doing make-up for customers. My store is slowly morphing into more of a concept shop. Just like the fashion in my store, all of the beauty products are handpicked as reflection of my style. Though, I have foregone many of my luxuries of the past, I still manage to maintain some, but in my own LES way.

A. Turen is located at 85 Stanton Street – New York – tel. 212-533-8200


by Kimberly Taylor


From left to right, top to bottom:

NARS Andy Warhol Flowers Eyeshadow Palette – $55

Benefit Cosmetics BADgal Lash Mascara – $10

Lipstick Queen Chinatown Glossy Pencil – $20

Charlotte Ronson A Perfect Mess Beach Hair – $20 (Exclusive)

Tom Ford Lip Color in Wild Ginger – $48

Ciaté Velvet Manicure™ – $19 (Exclusive – Limited Edition)

Stila Smudge Pots – $20

Stella McCartney Stella – $92

Lancome Dual End Smudger and Liner Brush – $20

Hourglass Aura Sheer Cheek Stain – $45

Carine Roitfeld for MAC Jungle Camouflage Compact – $44

Bumble and bumble Black Hair Powder – $19-35


If the Lower East Side girl would give up on washing her hair for the dirty, undone look achieved with dry shampoo, an Upper East Side woman would do whatever it takes to look polished.

It takes time to get the proper maintenance for perfect hair and impeccable nails, a luxury that not many have, no matter if they are a career women or stay-at-home mom.

Fix Beauty Bar is coming to their rescue. The new Upper East Side salon is a one-stop shop where you can get a blowout, manicure and pedicure simultaneously. The entire process will only take 45 minutes.

The process is quick but never rushed, from the spa-like waiting area with magazines and snacks, to the pleasant scalp massage finishing your hair wash, to the cup of coffee or glass of wine offered while receiving your services.

For your hair, you can take a glance through their look book that features styles inspired by the biggest celebrity hair icons, from slick-straight tresses called the “Jen” to glam curls of “Kim”, or describe your own dream look. “Even when they go for beach waves, the hair will be flowy but still very well-controlled.” So even surf-girl hair is coiffed and UES-approved.

Owners and friends Michelle Breskin and Karol Markowicz, who always loved to get their hair blow dried together, conceived their salon as a throwback to the ‘60s when women would congregate at the salon to gossip and catch up. The architecture of the main station, built as a cube, encourages a conversation and makes it a perfect hangout place for girlfriends.The simultaneous mani-pedi is what sets this blow dry bar apart from the competition. You can even dry one hand while painting the other in the ingenious dryer built into the manicure table.

It may sound too good to be true, but the pricing is quite affordable. A blow dry is $40, while a simultaneous manicure is $15. Packages are available for members, starting at $75.

Fix Beauty Bar is located at 847 Lexington Avenue, 2nd floor – tel. 212-744-0800 –


Colorado-born Caitlin, author of this week’s Beauty Adventure, shares her beauty routine that ensures she’s always ready for her close-up.

First thing in the morning, I start off with Clean and Clear Morning Burst Fruit Infusions Facial Hydrating Cleanser. It really wakes me up and feels so refreshing. I begin my makeup routine with NARS Sheer Matte foundation and oil-free primer. Another NARS product I love is their blush in Torrid. My go-to eye shadow brand is Givenchy. My favorite nail polish brand, though, is far less expensive: Forever 21! Another inexpensive product I ‘adour’ is Burt’s Bees chapstick.

My skin routine is very specific. I sometimes use Camellia Oil (which is often used by Japanese pregnant women) and almond oil to soothe my skin. I make a homemade facial out of a mix of lemon juice, brown sugar and honey. I exfoliate with red wine: I apply it as a mask and leave it on for ten minutes. It pulls the redness out of my skin! I also love CeraVe moisturizer. At the end of the day, I rely on Olay Regenerist Night Resurfacing Elixir.

To keep my platinum blonde hair color intact, I use Joico Color Endure Violet shampoo. Dop Dop, on Mercer Street, is my favorite salon. Jo Preston is the only person I trust with my hair – she’s incredible.