Wednesday, November 25, 2020

Haircut and Color Transformation at Elite Hair Studio & Spa

I was long overdue for a haircut and color appointment, and had recently gotten my hair makeover at Elite Hair Studio & Spa. It's hard to believe that I haven't gotten my haircut since last October! Originally I had a hair appointment at the end of March, but then the pandemic hit and everything shut down. 

Elite Hair Studio & Spa had taken many precautions to ensure my visit was a safe one. As soon as I walked in, they took my temperature and asked me to wash my hands. They also provided me with a new mask to wear (which I kept on the whole time with the exception of taking my before and after pic). They also have a very spacious studio, with a separate area for color services and haircuts. There are also large plexiglass panels separating each chair, and plenty of space for social distancing. I also felt at ease because it wasn't crowded there either. 

For my color treatment, my hairstylist and colorist Agnes walked me through a color consultation, and I ended up choosing warm, caramel balayage highlights. Then we went right into trimming my hair, followed by the color process. 

Next at the shampoo station, I love how there is an adjustable footrest, and a warm towel was placed at the back of my neck for a more relaxing experience. Wella ColorMotion+ Color Protection Shampoo was used on my hair, followed by the hair toner, and a deep conditioning / luxe hair massage with Wella ColorMotion+ Moisturizing Color Reflection Conditioner.

Then it was time to move over to the haircutting station to finish up my haircut with layers, followed by a blowout with curls. What a change! My hair was not only lighter in color but also in weight, as I had about six inches cut off my hair. It is a lot more manageable, and hopefully I won't have to wait another year before getting my haircut or highlights touched up! This was also the first time I got balayage highlights, which should have less maintenance as my highlights grow out, with the roots less noticeable and hair maintaining a more natural look. The total process of my cut and color appointment took 4 hours. My balayage hair is more noticeable if you look at the back of my hair, and with curls it really shows the color beautifully.  

A big thank you to Agnes for doing an amazing job on my hair, and to Martha Mehlman, creative director and owner of Elite Hair Studio & Spa and her team for collaborating with me and having me at the studio! 

 My cut, color & styling session is valued at $350, and you can find all pricing on If you plan on getting any color treatments, they have special on Tuesdays for 20% off hair color services. They are also running Black Friday specials on products and services through 11/30/20. You can also find more specials on their website promotions page as well as Facebook. Elite Salon & Spa also has amazing facial treatments. Check out my blog post on the Sothys Energizing Intensive Treatment Facial I experienced at their spa.

Hair transformation with warm, caramel balayage highlights

My 'before hair look, with super long hair, uncolored hair

Spacious hair color studio 

Shampoo / conditioning station

Hair cutting studio

- Kim Weling

Monday, June 8, 2020

Black-Owned Beauty Brands to Support

To share my support for the Black community, I've included some of my favorite black-owned beauty brands that you'll find in my beauty closet. The next time you shop for makeup, skincare or haircare, consider all the brands that celebrate inclusivity and diversity. 

1. Pat McGrath Labs - I have always been in awe of Pat as a makeup artist and had the pleasure of first meeting her back in June 2010 for the launch of COVERGIRL for LeSportsac. I've been a fan of her cosmetics line since it launched at Sephora back in 2016. My favorite from Pat McGrath Labs are the eyeshadow palettes, which always have amazing, richly pigmented hues, from neutrals to jewel tones, and works for a wide range of skin tones. 

2. Fenty Beauty by Rihanna - I remember when Fenty Beauty had first launched at Sephora, and Rihanna herself was ringing up customers at the register. Her line was created to offer shades and colors for all different skin tones. I love the Bomb Baby Mini Lip and Face Set, which includes the travel size Lip Luminizer in Fenty Glow and Killawatt Freestyle Highlighter in the Hu$tla Baby.

3. Danessa Myricks Beauty - One of the sweetest, talented makeup artists that has also been on my radar for years, thanks to The Makeup Show. Her work is both amazing and inspiring. My favorites from her line include the Illuminating Veil and Waterproof Cushion Liner.

4. Lauren Napier Beauty - I remember how happy I was for Lauren, when she had first exhibited her line at The Makeup Show. I'm obsessed with CLEANSE facial cleansing wipes. I always have them in my cosmetic bag and take them with me when I travel. I use them not only for removing makeup but also for touching up my eye makeup, especially when my eyeliner is running. I'm almost out of wipes, so I plan on trying the LA ROSE facial cleansing wipes infused with rosewater, starfruit and cucumber extracts.

5. Briogeo - I first met Briogeo founder Nancy Twine back in 2015 at Sephora and I've been hooked on her products ever since, especially the Blossom & Bloom Ginseng + Biotin Volumizer. At the time her company was still fairly new and upcoming, so I'm so happy to see how much her company has grown. I would love to try the Scalp Revival charcoal + coconut oil micro-exfoliating shampoo next. Also, Briogeo is one of Sephora's birthday gift options for 2020 so I recommend choosing it! 

6. Yelle Skincare - I had first met Yelle-founder Yandy Smith back in December 2017 when she had walked me through her natural plant-based skincare line and The Essential 3-Piece System that was just about to launch, comprised of the Awakening Milk & Honey Cleanser, Awakening Milk & Honey Toner and Awakening Daily Moisturizer. Her skincare line was designed specifically for melanin-rich skin. My favorite if her products is the toner, made with calming aloe, rose hip oil and hyaluronic acid.

7. Nyakio - Nyakio Kamoche Grieco's line celebrates traditional clean and green ingredients from around the world. My favorite is the Maracuja & Yangu Soothing Oil. I'd like to try the Sweet Almond Cleansing Oil Balm. 

- Kim Weling

Friday, May 8, 2020

Accessories Council Mother's Day Top Picks 2020

Happy Mother's Day to all the moms! Whether you are celebrating Mother's Day with a gift for yourself or looking to ship something special to your mom, check out these Accessories Council Mother's Day Top Picks!

Chic, eco-conscious, and affordable, Carmen Sol is made in Italy, with all accessories made of pure rose scented jelly material. The jelly is 100% recyclable, vegan.

Carolee offers unique pearl jewelry, and is inspired by everything from timeless silhouettes to the avant-garde. With the popular rose quartz being a stone of unconditional love, promoting a loving relationship with oneself and others, the Rose Quartz drop earrings is one of my favorite Carolee pieces. 

I love how fun and colorful Certain Standard umbrella designs are. These umbrellas are stylish and compact, with a full size canopy.   

Fortune & Frame designs jewelry and accessories that hold fortunes, meaningful messages, and personal mantras. Cute designs, including the Fortune Cookie locket and Envelope Fortune locket.
Jeff Wan features luxury bags and small leatherwear hand-made in Italy, with urban-minimalist design inspired by the colors and landscapes of Mauritius. One of my favorite pieces is the Lunch Box 11 in vibrant orange. 
Jumper Maybach's collection of luxuriously vibrant silk scarves make the perfect gift for any mom that loves bold patterns and colors. 

LEIGH celebrates your love of shoes, fashion and travel. Available in an array of luxurious nylon colors, all lined with X-STATIC Anti-Odor Silver Tech. Also great for clipping to your travel bag if you run out of room.

PavĂ© the Way, a division of Joan Hornig Jewelry, features a selection of necklaces and bracelets made with sterling silver, 18k gold and Swarovski Zirconia. 100% of profits are donated to the purchaser’s charity of choice.

Rachel offers tights unique tights according to your style. Part shop, part 2 for $25 subscription, Rachel delivers a personal style service that is on the cutting edge of both design and technology.

SSY makes you look good with their iconic bags, clutches, and small leathergoods. SSY creates the trademarked Shoe Jewelz and Laceeys. Shoe Jewelz are jewelry pieces designed for your footwear. All you do is slip the elastic band over any shoe. Laceeys are jewelry for your sneakers. They hook into the holes of your sneakers or shoes where your traditional laces are.

Stacy Kessler Accessories is a sustainable, vegan leather PETA approved, eco-chic accessory’s brand, providing both luxury and sustainability while also giving back to charities. I especially love the featured skull design.

Vint & York is an eyewear brand offering prescription frames and sunglasses, bringing together the essence of nostalgia with contemporary, classic design. Vintage feel initially inspired by the 1920s and reimagined into modern, stylish frames that are playful and timeless in vibrant colors, and unique shapes and styles.

ZuZu Kim produces The Couture Bow Tie® for people and pets, and are handmade in New York City. Many bow ties have a matching set for the wearer and their pet that make a perfect gift.

- Kim Weling