Ask Us Beauty Magazine: Holiday Issue 2021

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ASKUSBEAUTY BEAUTY/WELLNESS

THE HOLIDAY ISSUE

Laila Ali

Undefeated boxing champ to wellness warrior

Miss Val

LEGENDARY GYMNASTICS Coach & Survivor GRAMMY AWARD WINNER

LISA LOEB

STORIES OF HOPE,

HAPPINESS &

WELLNESS This Holiday Season

Robin

MCGRAW’S

inspiring I’ve Got a Secret podcast

INSIDE DAYTIME TV’S

(Days of our Lives, “Nicole”) Arianne Zucker and the Power of Positivity

Beauty Secrets

from RHONJ Margaret Josephs


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HOW TO NAVIGATE LOCATE YOUR FAVORITE ARTICLES by using the search feature or contents. I

f you know anything about sports, you

and always willing to learn and grow with time,”

know that the last name Ali is synonymous

she told us. Laila’s number one tip to make the

with the word ‘Champ.’ So many little girls

most significant impact on one’s overall health

transparent expression so that you don’t live

tribe carefully, but I actually don’t take myself

in fear and can be true to your beliefs. That’s

very seriously and have a big sense of humor.”

because, as she shared with us, her greatest

Her fun and up-for-anything personality has,

advice in living your best life is to focus on

however, shown up in her appearances on

listening to your inner voice or intuition.

shows such as The Masked Singer, Dancing With

“Every time I allow myself to be persuaded by

The Stars, The Apprentice, and her hosting of

someone else’s opinion, I end up regretting

American Gladiators. Laila’s always-learning

Just like the powerful and well-known lessons

that I didn’t go with my own gut feelings,” Laila

mentality can be found in what I like to call

from her father, Laila, too, is full of life’s

confided. “It definitely takes practice, but once

‘The Successful Personal Playbook.’ She has

wisdom. “It’s really important to identify what

you get used to trusting yourself, the easier it

used her experiences and affections to fuel

your values are in life. You have to know what’s

becomes.”

her brand. “I appreciate that I have been able

While that’s on a whole ‘nother level of how cool

important to you, what you’re passionate about,

is that, consider the fact that Laila Ali herself

and what you are willing to stay dedicated to.

While as strong as she is in both her mind

holds the title undefeated World Champion

Those answers look like something different for

Boxer with a 24-0 record. I guess the saying is

each of us and basically help you sum up your

true- the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.

life’s purpose. Once you know the answers to

Having witnessed what it takes to develop the

those questions, it’s important to stay grounded

strength and skills in the ring, it’s the applied

and focused so you can make sure you’re

and unwavering mental skills that have fostered

always moving in the right direction towards

this champion. Laila shared with us that boxing

your purpose in life.”

grow up with a twinkle in their eye, worshipping

and wellbeing is to make sure to drink plenty

their fathers and believing that their dad is the

of purified water. “I aim to drink 1/2 my body

G.O.A.T. I know I did. I still do. Yet, not too many

weight in ounces daily,” Laila shared. “If you’re 150

of those girls can actually say their dad holds

pounds, you would drink 75 ounces daily.”

the real title. Laila Ali is the daughter of largerthan-life global icon and, who most believe to be, The Greatest of All Time heavyweight boxing champion Muhammed Ali.

is and will always be her first love. “I went into the sport without any experience as an athlete in general. I knew that I wanted to become a world champion and stay undefeated. It took a lot of self-belief, determination, and consistent hard work in the gym. Achieving that goal gives me a tremendous amount of confidence in everything I do. But it all starts with self-belief.” These days, Laila focuses her attention on a

Laila Ali

UNDEFEATED By Michelle Emmick

52 HOLIDAY ISSUE

wellness mission to educate and empower people to improve their quality of life through healthy living. When it comes to beauty, aging, and wellness, Laila shares that she believes we are all blessed with each year that passes. “I focus on getting better in life. I listen to my body as it changes so I know what it needs regarding food, supplements, sleep, and exercise. What worked for me 20 years ago isn’t necessarily going to be the best thing for me now. So, I stay open-minded

of surrounding herself with forward-moving, positive people. “My husband is my biggest champion. He knows my best and worst

And while we live in a world that often wants

Follow www.lailaali.com

themselves.” Laila continues her family’s legacy in the humanitarian work that always remains at the forefront of everything she is a part of. “I have multiple organizations that I support,”

shaped me into someone who chooses her

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inspiration to become the greatest version of

better person than I was before I met him.”

up as the daughter of a global icon definitely

“ I focus on getting better in life. I listen to my body as it changes so I know what it needs regarding food, supplements, sleep, and exercise. ”

helps improve people’s lives and offer them

or can! I can truly say that he has made me a

think she is serious and guarded. “Growing

truth. Laila understands the importance of

wellness, etc., and turn it into a business that

challenges me in a way that no one else has

feels people who don’t know her personally

the courage of a champion to speak your

to take my passion for cooking, health, and

qualities and loves me unconditionally. He also

Interestingly, Laila shared that she sometimes

to tell us what to do and what to think, it takes

HOLIDAY ISSUE 53

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and body, Laila also knows the importance

Laila proudly shared. “Some of them are listed on my website through my Fan Corner. I donate 100% of the profit from sales to charity because I feel it’s important to give back, and I’m blessed to be able to do so.”

To me, a loves and herself/him figure out t take care spiritually and physic true bea comes


“ a person who d appreciates mself enough to the best way to of themselves y, emotionally, cally will exude auty. Beauty from within. ”

HOLIDAY ISSUE 57


ASKUSBEAUTY BEAUTY/WELLNESS

THE HOLIDAY ISSUE

EDITOR-IN-CHIEF Michelle Emmick

MANAGING EDITOR Amy Breuer

BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT Kellie Galvin

DIRECTOR OF MARKETING/STRATEGY Tequila Dodard

EXECUTIVE EDITOR Michelle Morrow ASSOCIATE EDITOR Jordan Peden

ASKUSBEAUTY BEAUTY/WELLNESS

Laila Ali

Undefeated boxing champ to wellness warrior

Miss Val

LEGENDARY GYMNASTICS Coach & Survivor

ASSOCIATE EDITOR Marianne Pienias MAGAZINE LAYOUT Allison Michele Horwath Kaymie de Jesus

THE HOLIDAY ISSUE

GRAMMY AWARD WINNER

LISA LOEB

STORIES OF HOPE,

HAPPINESS &

WELLNESS This Holiday Season

Robin

MCGRAW’S

inspiring I’ve Got a Secret podcast

INSIDE DAYTIME TV’S

(Days of our Lives, “Nicole”) Arianne Zucker and the Power of Positivity

Beauty Secrets

from RHONJ Margaret Josephs

CONTRIBUTING WRITER Josie Bissett

BEAUTY CONTRIBUTOR Jen Robinson

ADVERTISING OPPORTUNITIES advertising@askusbeautymagazine.com

Contact Us at hello@askusbeautymagazine.com or Visit our website at askusbeautymagazine.com GUIDELINES

Ask Us Beauty Magazine looks to provide our readers with educational and empowering content. We ask our contributors to share their stories through their own words and beliefs. Our stories are published after reviews by our editorial team. Our content providers are not employees of Ask Us Beauty, and while we do seek out contributors that we consider subject matter experts to the stories we share, we do not represent or guarantee their contributions, and note that we are independent to the information they provide. We do want to always acknowledge that we are committed to providing accurate information. If an error is brought to our attention, whether grammatical or factual, we will be happy to make the appropriate changes. Please feel free to contact us hello@askusbeautymagazine.com You will find links inside our stories based on the readers interest in related topics discussed. We encourage our readers if they like the content, to support our contributors through their personal social platforms that are included inside the articles we publish. Ask Us Beauty participates in various affiliate marketing programs, which means we may get paid commissions on editorial chosen products through our links to retailer sites. These are products/services that we believe may offer value to our readers. This does not affect our decisions on the products or services we select. We always want to champion that our readers decide for themselves on all beauty/ wellness decisions which is the mission of our platform.

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EDITOR’S NOTE

I

t’s a simple word. The word that is often most needed and comes to mind during difficult times. It’s a word without an exact definition because it can mean something different and unique to each one of us. It’s the word that often reflects the belief that provides faith, no matter what.

Whether a hardship or triumph, through life’s greatest joy or biggest failures, it’s the feeling of trust to keep going. That inherent part of our being provides reassurance that as long as we believe, anything is possible. It’s one simple word. HOPE. For this issue, we are sharing stories of inspiration. Authentic stories from women take you behind the curtain to share defining experiences that have impacted their lives. Stories of hope that may sound familiar or completely different from your own-- that are life lessons for all of us. My hope is that you read, connect, and recognize the beauty and power of the human spirit. The hope is that one simple word can be part of a positive transformation. Thank you to all our Ask Us Beauty contributors for sharing parts of your life in an effort to inspire others. Wishing you all the best this holiday season and for the upcoming year. Let’s keep finding hope in ourselves and each other.

XOXO, Michelle Emmick Founder & Editor-in-Chief

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contents 32 38

10

10

WE SALUTE YOU

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SMALL TOWN, BIG HEART

20 22 26 28

A GLOBAL SISTERHOOD SISTERS SHARE IN A CROSS-CONTINENTAL COLLECTIVE MISSION IN THEIR PARTNERSHIP. THEADS WORLDWIDE.

SOME HOLIDAY “ME TIME” SIMONE DE LA RUE’S TIPS AND TRICKS BRING US NEW PERSPECTIVES ON TAKING CARE OF YOURSELF DURING A BUSY TIME OF YEAR.

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44

ISABEL LAUREL DEFINES BEAUTY AS THE LOVE YOU HAVE FOR YOURSELF AND THE ENERGY YOU PUT INTO THE WORLD.

MADISON, WEST VIRGINIA AND MADISON, MISSISSIPPI ARE TWO MADISONS FULL OF HEART AND SOUL.

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GIVING BACK

AS MARY DAVIS SAID, “THE MORE GRATEFUL I AM, THE MORE BEAUTY I SEE.” GIVING BACK MEANS GETTING MORE IN RETURN.

MISS VAL

LEGENDARY COACH MISS VAL TEACHES US THAT “WE HAVE A CHOICE: A CHOICE TO WALK IN CIRCLES OR STEP FORWARD.”

JUST JOSIE

CONTRIBUTING WRITER JOSIE BISSETT TEACHES US HOW TO NOT JUST AGE GRACEFULLY, BUT ALSO GRATEFULLY; A SIMPLE BUT TRUE FORM OF ART.

SOUL CARRIER

SOUL CARRIER ARE WELL-DESIGNED, BEAUTIFULLY CRAFTED HANDBAGS THAT ARE A REMINDER TO CARRY AT ALL TIMES THE MOST ESSENTIAL ITEM OF ALL, YOUR SOUL.

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HOLIDAY 2021 FEATURES

47 44 48 52 60 66

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On the Cover: HOLIDAY STYLE TIPS

UNDEFEATED LAILA ALI

RENÉE LINDO SAYS HELLO TO HOLIDAY 2021 BY EMBRACING FALL TRENDS OF GLAM AND COLOR.

JEN’S TOP 10 GIFT IDEAS

OUR LOVER OF ALL THINGS FABULOUS SHARES HER TOP 10 PICKS FOR FUN HOLIDAY GIFTS.

PRODUCTS WE LOVE

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PAMPER YOURSELF FOR HANUKKAH OR CHRISTMAS WITH SOME OF ASK US BEAUTY’S TOP FAVORITES THIS SEASON.

UNDEFEATED: LAILA ALI

LOVING YOURSELF IS TRUE BEAUTY SHINING FROM WITHIN, AND THAT’S EXACTLY WHAT WE LOVE MOST ABOUT LAILA.

ARIANNE ZUCKER

LIKE SANDS THROUGH THE HOURGLASS, ARI ZUCKER SHARES THE POWER OF POSITIVITY.

MARGARET JOSEPHS

FAN FAVORITE FROM REAL HOUSEWIVES OF NEW JERSEY ENLIGHTENS US ABOUT SUCCESS & BEAUTY.

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72 76 104 110

Dr. Sarah Milken @theflexibleneurotic

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LISA LOEB

GRAMMY AWARD WINNER LISA LOEB BEAMS WITH BEAUTY INSIDE AND OUT.

BOOKS & MEDIA WE LOVE

ASK US BEAUTY’S BEST RECOMMENDATIONS ON BOOKS AND MEDIA THAT WE LOVE AND WANT TO SHARE WITH YOU. FEATURING ROBIN MCGRAW.

WEAVE IT

“IF YOU CAN’T ACHIEVE IT, WEAVE IT,” SAYS THE HAIR EXTENSION EXPERTS AT KMXTEND HAIR.

COMMUNITY BEAUTIES

COMMUNITY BEAUTIES SPOTLIGHT WOMEN’S BUSINESS LEAGUE GIVES WOMEN AN OPPORTUNITY TO TAKE CARE OF THEIR BUSINESS AND THEMSELVES.

TIMELESS BEAUTIES GET TO KNOW GAIL ZELITZKY & CATHERINE MARINEA.

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By Isabel Laurel San Antonio, Texas

M

y name is Navy Chief Counselor Isabel Guerrero, and I have been on Active Duty for over 16 years, serving in the World’s Greatest Navy. I was born and raised in San Antonio, Texas. I am Latina Mexican American. During my high school senior year, I joined the Navy, shipped out 6 months post-graduation at 19, and headed to Recruit Training Command in Great Lakes, IL, to become a Sonar Technician. I was assigned to four different ships in Japan to perform my duties. Currently, I am assigned to N3R Prior Service Site SE as the Navy Reserve Prior Service Regional Supervisor. My job is to assist 10 HOLIDAY ISSUE

Veterans to re-enlist in the Navy Reserves and help Active-Duty Service-members transition to the Reserves without a break in Service. I am a Career Counselor (CRF), which means that I am a Career Recruiter. I decided to do recruiting because I wanted to help people and felt that I had a niche for public speaking, building connections, and creating meaningful and lasting relationships. I have been serving in this job for the past 12 years and truly love it. I am married to my wonderful husband, who is also serving on Active Duty. We have two beautiful daughters and three wonderful


dogs. I enjoy running, cycling, crafting, and hanging out with my family in my off time. I am a foodie, and I love coffee! I stay busy and thoroughly love being outdoors.

Back then, I didn’t realize that I needed much more growing in the self-help area because I was internally struggling with self-esteem, body dysmorphia, depression, and anxiety.

I recently completed my Associate’s Degree in Business Administration and am almost complete with my bachelor’s in business management with a concentration in leadership. Another amazing benefit to serving is sending our oldest daughter to college using our Post 911 Montgomery G.I Bill. We put a lot of emphasis on education, setting goals, and achieving them. I feel we have been able to instill that mentality in our girls.

Changes took place when I met my now current husband and my two girls. I saw that life had more meaning, and that love was the most crucial part of any relationship, but especially the one I have with myself. I feel most beautiful when I am around people I love sharing in moments of joy and gratitude. I began flourishing, and then I started to thrive. They taught me that.

My definition of beauty is the love you have for yourself and the energy you put into the world. Beauty can be measured in many ways. But I feel it is your whole being and how you carry yourself. If you asked me this in my early 20s, you would have gotten a whole different answer. I felt beauty was external and required validation from anyone and everyone. I wanted to always be the life of the party or the girl who looked the best and turned heads. It was all about the clothes, the makeup, the “skinny” yet toned body.

But if you are to ask me what externally makes you feel beautiful… well, I do have an answer for that! I feel beautiful in a flowy dress with my naturally wavy hair and makeup. I love a mauve lip and cannot live without my mascara. Most of my wardrobe is extraordinarily colorful and bold. Even my workout gear is loud. I have many tattoos that I have acquired since I have been in the Service. Collages of birds, butterflies, and flowers lace my chest, rib cage, and arm. I feel that they represent the beauty of the earth, and it symbolizes harmony, peace, and tranquility for me.

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Small town,

Big Heart

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Madison, West Virginia

Deanna Howell Madison is a small town, but we have some beautiful people that live here. I’m not talking about the beauty you look at in the mirror; I’m talking about the beauty that is within. The people in our town are hardworking and loyal. They believe in family and hold onto those family values. You don’t have to look far to find help from someone. We’ve seen some hard times with the Coal Mining Industry declining, but that has not and will not stop us from rebuilding. It’s just what we do!

O

wning a boutique had been a dream of mine for over 20 years. With a nudge from my father-in-law and the support of my husband, I began talking more about this dream with my friend, and now partner, Gaye Bias. We love working together as we have similar tastes and love taking something and finding the good in it. We love to repurpose. That’s actually what we are doing with ourselves- learning to love the perfectly imperfect. I’ve been married to my husband Kip for 34 years, and we have two children, Harry, age 29, and Meredith, age 25.

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We want our town to succeed. We are currently in a rebuilding phase. I’m sure some thought I was crazy for opening a ladies’ boutique in a small town during Covid without knowing what our future held. But that is exactly why I decided this was the right time. We needed something positive. We needed to see hope. We needed something to make us smile. If you came into our store and didn’t make a purchase, I certainly hope you left with a more pleasant day than when you entered. I hope you saw two older ladies who had found hope, and it became contagious for you. A smile can be such great medicine to someone who needs it.

“Finding time to listen to yourself is beautiful, whether from meditation, a walk, or just quiet time to listen to your body and mind. ”


Madison has other boutiques and salons in our small town. We also have beautiful mountains for hiking and ATV riding, and kayaking is a very popular sport here too. There are Airbnb’s for weekend getaways as well, as our town is close to several State Parks. A girls’ weekend in the mountains is just the thing to rejuvenate your soul- soul searching while breathing in the clean mountain air is a beautiful thing. There’s not much better than a glass of wine by the firepit discussing what life holds for your friends and family. When I think about beauty, I think it comes from many sources. Finding time to listen to yourself is beautiful, whether from meditation, a walk, or just quiet time to listen to your body and mind. I’m a total work in progress when it comes to this subject. I feel we sell ourselves short as women. Sometimes we feel selfish for taking time for ourselves. But time is such a gift. We aren’t promised tomorrow, so I believe in trying to find a little time to do something that makes you happy and makes you smile. That is beauty. Facebook at The Southern Pineapple IG thesouthernpineapplewv

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Madison, Mississippi

Tomeka Bayliss

I

to volunteer within the community. Faith is also a large part of the culture of Madison. We also have a top-notch education system, which draws many families to Madison.

I love living in Madison, or “Brick City,” the fun nickname given to our city by some of its residents. It is a quaint city where southern hospitality is a real thing. Madison is special to me because it’s a safe place to raise your family. There are many opportunities for children to be involved in sports, arts, and

Holidays here are the best! Our community celebrates BIG with fireworks, lights, decorations, and even a parade. Each year the city of Madison puts on a Christmas parade. It gives many children a chance to take part in it. Dancers, cheerleaders, boy and girl scout troops, pageant winners, marching bands, and various clubs are all included. It is a great time for children to watch their mentors and feel the spirit of the community while getting revved up for the holiday season.

was born and raised in Mississippi, and I love calling it my home. We moved to Madison in 2005. I am married to my high school sweetheart, Scott. We have a ten-year-old daughter, Blake, and the cutest poodle, Ollie Mae. I am a teacher at one of the best middle schools in Mississippi. In addition, my husband and I enjoy serving in the children’s ministry at our church.

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Madison is full of hidden gems. From huge recreational lakes to a man-made reservoir, Madison has lots to offer. We have two very special parks that are very well maintained and family friendly. The Natchez Trace also has a unique walking and biking trail with amazing scenery year-round. There are also local gyms that help keep us beautiful by being strong from the inside out. When it comes to beauty, I find it while watching my daughter play sports. Seeing her enjoy the outdoors is the most beautiful thing in the world. I feel beautiful and blessed when I’m at home in my pajamas with my family, watching a movie with no make-up on, and my hair in a messy ponytail. I also love getting all dolled up for a date night with my husband, a fun girl’s night, or a celebration with friends. Freshly painted nails and toes, a good blowout, and no forehead wrinkles make a girl smile, too!

“I feel beautiful and blessed when I’m at home in my pajamas with my family, watching a movie with no makeup on, and my hair in a messy ponytail. ”

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giving BACK


“ The more grateful I am, the more beauty I see ”

~ Mary Davis

Some of the ways our contributors give back to:

Inspire Always Marcia Agius

I

am happily married to my best friend, and we have three amazing children. I have spent the last 25 years in 3 different countries, running a busy household. Raising my kids and supporting my hard-working husband which wasn’t always easy, but so worth it. I feel so proud to play such an essential role in my family’s successes and the life we have built. An important part of my values is giving back. I have had the excellent opportunity to be a part of various fundraising efforts and events. Over the years, I have been inspired by many exceptional women, which has prompted me to launch Inspire Always. Inspire Always is a forum that highlights and features incredible women showing their strengths and struggles. It’s a community of women that motivates and cheers others on. This platform spreads kindness, positivity and gives back to the community, especially during these trying times. I feel the most beautiful when I am able to give back and help people. It brings me such joy! I define beauty as someone who has the confidence to be unapologetically authentic! inspirealways.ca @_inspirealways

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“We have a choice: a choice to walk in circles or step forward.”

Legendary Coach

MISS VAL Written by Michelle Emmick

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W

e have a choice: a choice to walk in circles or step forward. Every single one of us has experienced negative self-talk, the ‘poor me, I’m not good enough’ trope. Unless you have a mental disability, you have a choice- the choice to choose your thoughts. We all get into the desert sometimes, the desert being an isolating place where you must challenge yourself. And it’s in the desert where real transformation happens, where you allow your thinking to switch and step into a place of gratitude, enumerating every single thing you can be grateful for, big or small, acknowledging what you are thankful for everyday and repeating those thoughts until it leads you out.“

Those are words of Valorie Kondos Field, a.k.a Miss Val, a remarkable woman with a 37-year career as a dancer/choreographer turned legendary head coach. She is a seven-time NCAA Champion, 22-time Regional Champion, and an 18-time Pac 12 Champion for the UCLA Women’s Gymnastics team. Inducted into the UCLA Athletic Hall of Fame in 2010, the four-time National Coach of the Year was also named West Region Coach of the Year and Pac 12 Coach of the Century. Now retired from gymnastics coaching, Miss Val continues her impact. In her book, Life Is Short, Don’t Wait to Dance: Advice and Inspiration, Miss Val shares her personal and professional journey and life lessons as a coach. “The only reason a person needs a coach in their life is to help them achieve something they can’t on their own. The fact is you can try and dictate a change in someone, but you won’t get the same result as if you motivate them,” says Miss Val.

Valorie began her career as a professional ballet dancer and choreographer for the Washington, DC and Sacramento Ballet Companies. Though never a gymnast herself, she transferred what she learned in the world of classical dance and combined her solid upbringing, mental toughness, and winner mindset to coach one of the premiere athletic programs in any sport. She’s mentored hundreds of elite athletes, including Olympic champions Simone Biles, Jordan Wieber, Kyla Ross, Madison Kocian, Laurie Hernandez and Nastia Liukin, among others. Inside her book, Miss Val shares how her experiences shaped her coaching style and created a coaching program that reads more like a life coach playbook. In the chapter “The Art of The Ask,” Miss Val shares that her entire adult life wouldn’t have happened the way it had if she had been afraid to pick up the phone and ask for what she wanted. Of this, she shared, “I want young women to have the confidence and belief in themselves that my mother passed down to me. She used to say, ‘the worst thing you can hear is a no.’ People have always said I don’t take no for an answer. Well, I’ll stop when you tell me it’s enough because how often is it that you get a yes on the first try?” Miss Val calls this Lifeskill, The Nudge. Another one of her key takeaways in lifeskills coaching is “‘Act as If’ you are here for a reason, and you are unique for a reason. Your light has never populated this world and never will again. It isn’t about acting like someone else; it’s about seeing yourself at your full potential.”

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These amazing life lessons were put to the ultimate test in 2014 when Miss Val received a call from her doctor and learned she had Breast Cancer. While many struggle with the effects, Miss Val decided to keep her faith and hope at the forefront. “It is proven that when your brain focuses on being positive and grateful, it produces healthy chemicals, and it floods your system with those chemicals. My inner dialogue was not I have to go to chemotherapy; it was I get to go to chemotherapy,” she divulged. Miss Val shared that her coaching style shifted drastically during that time. “I was still posturing being a coach. I was on the competition floor and putting on a stern effect because I wanted everyone to know I took my job seriously. When I got diagnosed, I heard a quote from the bible: ‘Be anxious for nothing and grateful for all things.’ From that point on, I switched from posturing to being grateful for the opportunity to help these women to be champions in life, and that became an opportunity I was grateful for, not expecting to be a coach. The year I went through chemo, I was enjoying the moment, and on the competition floor, I made a commitment to myself to enjoy it all.” Now years cancer-free, Miss Val has planted roots in Fayetteville, Arkansas, with her husband, retired UCLA Football Coach, Bobby Field. And like many retired coaches, there’s no sign of slowing down. Miss Val wants to produce an urban nutcracker for film and an animated film about the environment. She is also working on producing a documentary about the 2018 National Championships, which is considered one of the greatest comebacks in sports history. Next up, Miss

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Val has taken on the role of Supervising Choreographer for the Gold Over America Tour featuring the best gymnasts in the United States, including the most decorated gymnast of all time, Simone Biles. If all of this wasn’t enough, Valorie spends her free time actively involved with the UCLA Jonsson Cancer Center Foundation, LA 84 Olympic Foundation, Women in Sports and Events, Breast Cancer Research, Unite for Her, and many other charitable organizations. I ended my interview by asking Miss Val how she defines beauty, and in her eloquent words, she shared this: “It’s that inner light that exudes from someone who is grateful and thoughtful with their gratitude. It’s a calming peacefulness and confidence that comes from just knowing that living in gratitude fuels that inner light.”

“ It is proven that when your brain focuses on being positive and grateful, it produces healthy chemicals, and it floods your system with those chemicals. ”


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Josie J

T

US

Contributing Writer

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Aging Gratefully and Gracefully

A

s we begin to make our way out of

for every new wrinkle that I swear was not

profoundly challenging times, I have

there yesterday.

been thinking about the ways in

which the global pandemic has impacted our lives; the good and the bad. It has undeniably forced us to confront our deepest questions and fears about life, death, and suffering. However, I believe that our new normal casts a bright light on what TRULY matters in this ONE beautiful LIFE we have been given.

For as long as I can remember, my passion has been to live my best life, educate myself as much as possible about health, wellness, and the cutting-edge science of aging. When I was asked to grace the cover of the inaugural issue of Ask Us Beauty, I was excited about the opportunity and learned about the other incredible women and doctors featured. I

When the realization set in that covid-19 was

loved getting to personally know the women

here to stay for a while, my type-a kicked in!

behind the magazine and their mission of

I immediately set goals, the same goals I put on my list on January 1st every year. Learn a new language, finally learn to play the guitar I bought 10 years ago, get super fit, meditate,

women defining beauty on their own terms. I am inspired to be part of this amazing community of women and for all of us to celebrate the aging process together.

read more etc. Well, none of that happened.

I am so excited to share with you all things

Instead, the pandemic forced me to pause,

beauty + wellness related. From my favorite

self-reflect and slow my busy ass down.

products, procedures and life hacks to advice

It gently nudged me to examine the areas in my life that felt off kilter and take stock in my most important relationships. It showed me that I need more balance, self-care and to never forget that the most important relationship I will ever have, is the one with myself. And today, after months of reflection

and tips from today’s top beauty and health experts as well inspiring stories from everyday women.

Josie

Cheers to Aging gracefully- And gratefully,

Josie Bissett | @josiebissett

on my life- I turn to my own reflection in the mirror and I am grateful for simply being alive and I am learning (baby-steps) to be grateful

What topics are you most interested in me writing about? I would love to hear from you! Email hello@askusbeautymagazine.com

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Soul Carrier Soul Carrier are well-designed, beautifully crafted handbags that are a reminder to carry at all times the most essential item of all, your soul.

JENNIFER BOONLORN | WRITTEN BY KELLIE GALVIN

his story is a metaphor for finding

T

as her father greatly influenced her life.

your true north and having the

Jennifer admitted she didn’t think like

courage to listen to your inner

a lawyer. Her life had changed, and so

voice. “Soul Carrier” answers a question

had her journey. With guidance from

Jennifer Boonlorn’s mother posed to her the

a very close friend, she listened to her

summer before her senior year at ASU. That

intuition and trusted her “True North”

summer, her entire family was involved in

Jennifer always loved fashion and design,

a car accident that took the lives of both

so she started taking classes at a local

her parents. Only moments before her

community college on art history, color

father’s SUV rolled over in a tire blowout,

theory, and textiles. The college she was

her mother turned around to pose a final

attending took a summer trip to New York

question, “Where do you want to go?”

City, and she loved it so much that she enrolled in the Parsons School of Design.

This is where Jennifer Boonlorn’s Soul

This is where she found her bliss.

Journey begins. When listening to her story, I can’t help but think that we all

Jennifer’s first project was inspired by the

have guardian angels. They can physically

character Blair Waldorf on the TV show

be with us for so much of your life, and

Gossip Girl. Jennifer designed unique

suddenly they’re gone. In Jennifer’s case,

headbands that were so popular that Henri

she was left with the question.

Bendel’s of New York bought her entire

Where do you want to go?

inventory.

Jennifer’s course was set to a law school,

After residing in New York for several

28 HOLIDAY ISSUE


I believe strongly that your soul is your internal compass, a guide for your journey throughout life — JENNIFER BOONLORN

HOLIDAY ISSUE 29


years, this Arizona girl was homesick for the warm southwest. So with a new city and job in marketing, along with a fun collaboration and encouragement from a good friend, Soul Carrier was formed. Soul Carrier are well-designed, beautifully crafted handbags that are a reminder to carry at all times the most essential item of all, your soul. “I believe strongly that your soul is your internal compass, a guide for your journey throughout life,” shares Jennifer. Soul Carrier has two designs. THE ESSENTIALIST COLLECTION Inspired to create a collection of sophisticated handbags that carry your daily essentials with style and grace while also practical and convenient. TRUE NORTH COLLECTION The True North collection comprises four timeless bag silhouettes: a tote, a messenger, a small satchel, and a sleek clutch. This collection skews to a modern and clean aesthetic and is composed of luxurious leather, cowhide, and gold hardware. www.soulcarrier.com IG @soulcarrier

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HOLIDAY ISSUE 31


T H E POWER O F A

GLOBAL SISTERHOOD By Amy Breuer “

T

hreads is built on the belief that we are

offered as new grads, they enlisted their third

better together and that anything is

bestie for an adventure, and the three of them

possible when people are committed to

made their way across the United States and

a common vision,” Kara Valentine, Co-Founder

around the world. As they traveled further, the

of Threads Worldwide, shares as we spoke about

living conditions and hardship became more

her fellow founding partners Angela Melfi and

apparent, and a lingering question of “what can

Lindsay Murphy and their journey to Threads

we do” grew, as did their inspiration to find a

Worldwide.

creative way to be part of the solution.

Kara and Angela met on the volleyball court in

As life would have it, fresh perspectives and ideas

college, and within a minute, they became best

often come when we least expect them. Angela’s

friends. In pursuit of exploring all the world

idea came after looking down at her beautiful skirt

32 HOLIDAY ISSUE


takes a great deal of responsibility to expand the marketplace so that women can thrive. When the pandemic hit, and other businesses including the tourism industry shut down, their artisan partners’ reliance on income from Threads Worldwide was more critical than ever. This organization draws strength from the women that make the jewelry to the people made in the Congo and realizing that they could

wearing it. Whether you are interested in

create a marketplace for women artisans here in

purchasing their beautiful jewelry, hosting a

the US. Women reinvest 90% of their income into

Threads Gathering, or are interested in joining

their families so When women earn an income

the team as a Threads Socialpreneur, visit them

and discover their voice, everybody wins!

at https://threadsworldwide.com

Amazed by the unique gifts and talents of women

When asked what lessons she has learned from

they met during their travels, Threads Worldwide

this experience, Kara replied, “trusting ourselves

created a community-led, fair trade marketplace.

that we know what the right next step is,” and,

Threads provides women in the US the opportunity

when asked how she defines beauty, she humbly

to create a sales channel here in the US for

shared, “I define beauty as living your truest and

the beautiful pieces made by women around

fullest expression.”

the world. Women are able to earn an income while being connected to a larger community in

Absolutely, Kara, I couldn’t agree with you more!

a meaningful way. They call this their “Elevation Ecosystem”, which allows women to: $Share in a collective mission. $ Do so in an environment that calls forth people’s unique gifts and talents, where every member is connected, and where we have a deep trust in ourselves and our members.” Threads Worldwide partners with 9 cooperatives in 8 countries and has been creating work for almost a decade. They are connected to their artisan partners, and they look for opportunities to make meaningful connections while providing a stepping stone to growth and a pathway to success. The values of the organization are firmly embedded into their culture, and the team HOLIDAY ISSUE 33


34 HOLIDAY ISSUE


HOLIDAY ISSUE 35


Join the Community Join Our FB Group & Win Amazing Prizes!

Q:

What Brings You Joy During the Holidays?

WHAT BRINGS ME JOY is having my kids at home, listening to Christmas music and decorating our tree together while reminiscing about our special ornaments - whether that be a baby photo or a special vacation memory (I buy an ornament at each vacation spot). Usually this involves some yelling - get off your phones and help!! :) Luckily the older they get the less I have to do this. At the end of long holiday prep days, I really enjoy turning the lights off in my home and just lighting the tree, drinking a cup of hot chocolate, and counting my blessings. MERCEDES MOTZER

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ANSWERS BY BEAUTIES

A: SO MANY THINGS BUT ONE OF THE BEST IS TIME SPENT OUTSIDE ENJOYING THE FIRE PIT, HOLIDAY DECORATIONS, AND MEALS WITH FAMILY AND FRIENDS. LOVE THE HOLIDAYS! KATHY SORONELLAS

“The Christmas tree brings me joy and of course; my kids.” KELLY ELDRIDGE

Answers by Beauties... “Celebrating my birthday with my family and all the love we share at that time.” CHIMIA HILL BURTON

I FEEL JOYOUS THAT MY FAMILY MADE IT THROUGH NEARLY TWO YEARS OF ISOLATION, DEATH, VACCINE IDEOLOGY CLASHES AND ILLNESS AND HAVE PROVEN THAT WE WILL ALWAYS BE THERE FOR EACH OTHER WHEN IT MATTERS MOST. JENNIFER CONVISSOR

Creating an environment which is enchanting so when people come over, they feel the magic of Christmasthat giddy excitementlike a child.” ELIZABETH CONTE

Christmas traditions with my brothers and sisters and their families all getting together. We spend time cooking, hanging out, walking to look at neighborhood Christmas lights, and always lots of laughing.

“Making my grandmother’s fudge pie and sausage balls recipe which I only make at Thanksgiving and Christmas.” CRYSTAL LAAKE

“Relaxation and recuperation for mind, body and soul with loved ones or space for solitude, reflection and gratefulness for your holiday. Also, laughing and enjoying myself.” GRACIE BOND

JEN FOWLER

What is your favorite go-to beauty product?...Answers will be in the next issue.

HOLIDAY ISSUE 37


Simone De La Rue’s

TIPS FOR FINDING ME TIME DURING THE HOLIDAYS:

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1 Rise and shine: It’s hard to find time for yourself, especially during the holiday season when you want to be present with your family. Try setting your alarm and getting up 30 minutes before the rest of the household. It is the perfect quiet time for meditation, journaling or even a quick work out.

3 Take a walk: Even if you have to run an errand, try walking there rather than driving. Breath in the fresh air, disconnect from your device and just be present. Think of it as time out for your mind and exercise for your body. Walking meditation! It’s a win win!

2 Schedule in your workout. Make it a non negotiable for yourself. If you stick to the commitment, then your family will honor that. Perhaps it is the first thing you do when you wake up, or in the afternoon when everyone else is relaxing. Humans respond best when we have a schedule and a routine.

4 Enjoy a bath: Make bath time your quiet time. Light a candle, play some soothing tunes and soak those sore muscles. Even if it is just for 20 minutes, slowing down your heart rate and allowing yourself some relax time can feel as good as a vacation.

About Simone De La Rue: Simone De La Rue is a certified life coach, celebrity trainer, entrepreneur and mom. After a successful dance career on Broadway, London’s West End and her native country of Australia, Simone De La Rue made a natural transition to the fitness industry becoming a certified NASM CPT, and Pre/ PostNatal specialist. With a passion to help others feel empowered and as a certified Life Coach, Simone works with clients to create the most meaningful, joyful, and sustainable results in order to thrive in life. Simone is the creator of Body By Simone, which Forbes named ‘Hollywood’s hottest workout Empire.’ She’s trained Oscar® and Grammy® winners, super models, and moms and has appeared on E! Network’s Revenge Body with Khloe Kardashian. She recently launched Transformation From Within, her all-new 4-week program to supply the tools needed to make stronger, deeper connections between mind, body and spirit.

HOLIDAY ISSUE 39




With Renée Lindo

H

oliday 2021 will be a little different. After living through 18 months of lockdowns and

stay at home orders, as we climb out (hopefully) of pandemic life, we are doing things differently now. Last year for the most part we stayed home over the holidays and if we went out it was a much more casual, low-key vibe. Hello Holiday 2021...the vaccine, the world feeling like it’s opening up, and people trying to get back to living and celebrating life as we knew it. Following the 2021 Fall trends of glam and color and being comfortable, as overarching themes, these trends will play right into our holiday style.

Renée Lindo is a Personal stylist based in Toronto, Canada serving clients globally, she guides women on their style journey, so that they can show up as the best version of themselves. Her company Let’s Get Dressed Now is a personal styling solution and clothing boutique, meeting women wherever they are on their style journey. Renée is passionate about helping women show up as their most authentic selves and believes when your outward appearance is aligned with who you are on the inside, that is when you are the most powerful. You become magnetic and able to share your magic with the world. 42 HOLIDAY ISSUE


Here are my tips for Holiday dressing and looking and feeling good to be going out again: It’s all about the GLAM, baby! Bring on the sparkle and the shine. We are going all the way opposite to the sloppy sweats, and dressing up again. Sequins and sparkles will have a real place this holiday season. And hey, sequins in the daytime too-it’s a vibe! Instead of a predictable sequin dress, try sequins wide leg pants or leggings. Yes, we are embracing sparkle and shine, but I recommend not going out looking like a disco ball, ie. with everything sparkling, with big hair, heavy shiny makeup, big jewelry and sparkly clothes. I recommend picking one area of interest and keeping the rest of your outfit understated, classy and elegant. Vibrant color! Bring it on. This is definitely a reflection of our optimism and excitement for our new normal. I’m talking about bright pinks, red, cobalt blue, greens, yellows, ALL THE COLORS. We’re doing head to toe vibrant colors for a huge color statement. I’m here for it! Color is such a huge mood boost. What a great addition to any holiday gathering. How about switching things a bit this year? Instead of the usual party dress, try a silky, satin pantsuit or a jumpsuit. Comfort is still a big theme for the holidays. Comfort but make it fashion. Cutouts-I love these, I know this can be scary for some, but think about classy, strategically placed cutouts. It doesn’t have to be your tummy exposed. Instead, how about cutouts along the sleeves or shoulder, and have that be the star of your show. That will make your look interesting and very current. So yes, Holiday 2021 here you come! You are ready! Ready to live again, ready to dress up and look and feel amazing. HOLIDAY ISSUE 43


JEN’S TO P T EN

GIFT IDE AS Our lover of all things fabulous shares her top 10 picks for fun holiday gifts

#2

Uniqlo Ultra Light down vests ($49.90, women’s sizes XXS-XXL) The perfect transitional weather piece, these vests provide an extra layer of warmth without the bulk that can make you feel like the Michelin Man. They layer beautifully under jackets and blazers, too, and come in a myriad of colors. www.uniqlo.com

#1 The TOPTOTE hat holder ($48-$69) Whenever I travel, no matter where I go, I always bring a hat. But my biggest struggle has been how to pack it—and I don’t care how “packable” a hat claims to be, it always comes out of the suitcase looking wonky. Until I found this little gem—a hat holder that clips to the strap of your purse, tote bag, or suitcase— with tough magnets that hold the brim of your hat. Voila! Handsfree and no more flat hats!

#3

This thing is SO GOOD that I have purchased 2 myself.

Lipsticks from The Lipstick Journey ($22) There are so many reasons to buy from this company. A womanowned business, The Lipstick Journey was founded by Anna Warner Mayes, who has been fighting cancer for 10 years. And if that wasn’t reason enough, with every tube you purchase, one is donated to a woman fighting cancer. I purchased a tube for myself, and one was sent with a heartfelt note of encouragement to my best friend who has been battling breast cancer. This company has heart and soul—and great lip color.

My picks: “The Drop” and “The Loop” www.lindsayalbanese.com

Check out my favorites: “Playful” liquid lip and “Brave” crème lipstick www.thelipstickjourney.com

44 HOLIDAY ISSUE

#4

“Untamed” by Glennon Doyle ($28) Every once in a while, a book grabs you by the shirt, pulls you in and says “wake the hell up, girl.” This is that book. Part memoir, part rally cry for women of all ages—“Untamed” is transformative. Already have the book? Pre-order the journal coming out in November. www.untamedbook.com


#5

Beauty Pie candles ($19-$60) If you’ve seen my Instagram or my YouTube channel, you know how OBSESSED I am with these candles. They rival “designer candles” and the scents are out of this world. Purchase them at the retail price of $60, or join the buyer’s club and get them at a third of the price. Trust me--this is a hostess gift she’ll never dream of re-gifting. My picks: Pomegranate & Baies Rose, Bergamot and Wild Basil, and my alltime favorite—Reves d’ Eze www.beautypie.com

#6

Graphic t-shirts from Target ($12-$19; women’s sizes XS-3X) Love the look of a vintage tee with jeans and a leather jacket? Check out both the women’s and men’s departments and nab a Rolling Stones or Bob Marley shirt for a steal. www.target.com

#7

J.Crew Western Hat with Grosgrain Trim ($89, 2 sizes) Don’t let the name fool you—this hat is less “cowgirl” and more “bohemian fabulous.” Truth be told, I now own this hat in 4 out of the 5 colors available. All wool and made in Italy—this universally flattering hat is lightweight and effortlessly chic. Pair it with a slouchy sweater and maxi skirt, or a kimono over a tank top and jeans for some quintessential boho vibes. My pick: if you’re only going to get one (it will be difficult, I’m telling you)— check out the Midnight Navy www.jcrew.com

#8

Kurt Geiger handbags ($180 and up) From tweed, to sequins, to butterysoft quilted leathers…Kurt Geiger offer designer looks and true statement bags at reasonable prices. My picks: check out the Leather Kensington in metallic rainbow stripes, or the pillowy quilted leather Large Kensington Soft Bag in Khaki or Black www.kurtgeiger.com

#9

Doc Martens boots ($140 and up) I absolutely love the look of a feminine dress or maxi skirt with combat boots— and Doc Martens is the O.G. of the combat boot game. My favorite: the 1460 patent leather lace up boot www.drmartens.com

#10

Bearaby “Tree Napper” Weighted Blanket ($279) Weighted blankets have been proven to help anxiety, pain, insomnia and restlessness. In gorgeous designer colors that go with any décor—you’ll look good while you get your holiday hangover nap on. www.bearaby.com

Wishing you all Happy Holidays with those you love and those who love you!

x, Jen

@makingupforglossedtime HOLIDAY ISSUE 45



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HOLIDAY ISSUE 49


mindfulness

DURING HOLIDAYS Dr. Rachna Buxani-Mirpuri, LMHC, NCC, BC-TMH

H

olidays, while joyous, can be stressful times for many. Family gatherings, planning, meal prepping, and tireless conversations can leave people feeling exhausted. Mindfulness is the art of focusing on the present moment rather than what we are conditioned to do, the past or the future. It is also the acceptance of situations without judgment. Mindfulness practices can help us enjoy holiday moments with our loved ones. Some ways of being mindful during holidays are:  Mindful listening: When we have conversations, we are often plagued with our own biases and judgments. Mindful listening shows people around you that you care and are genuinely interested in them and their lives.

 Be non-judgmental about expectations of what and how the celebrations need to turn out. Enjoy the moments for what they are rather than what you wanted them to be.  Remind yourself of what is in your control. A family member who is being difficult might not be in your control. However, your reaction to him is. Reacting with kindness to even the most troublesome people and reminding yourself not to take things personally will help navigate difficult situations.  Be mindful of your own feelings and frustrations. Reach out for support when and if you need it. Practice coping strategies that help you feel better, like eating right, sleeping well, exercising, or meditation.  Learn to say “no” when you are feeling overwhelmed. Friends, colleagues, and family will understand if you cannot make it to every celebration or work commitment.  If you are alone on holidays, reach out to community, religious and social groups to see if you can attend events that can help you feel connected. Identifying triggers early on and building coping mechanisms can help ensure that holiday stressors prevent us from enjoying the festive season. Holidays have their ups and downs; however, mindfulness practices can help us enjoy our ups and navigate our downs to find peace and happiness during this joyful time.

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New Year’s Resolution: 3 Steps to Reach Any Goal Faster Want to shortcut the time you take to reach a goal? The key is NOT in hustling or doing more; the key is FEELING more!

1

STEP 1: Identify how you think you feel once you reach your goal

2

3

STEP 2: Write down all the ways you already feel that way, and practice feeling it everyday on purpose

STEP 3: Take action every day from those feelings

Dr. Krystal Conner: Life Coach

HOLIDAY ISSUE 51


Laila Ali

UNDEFEATED By Michelle Emmick

52 HOLIDAY ISSUE


I

f you know anything about sports, you

and always willing to learn and grow with time,”

know that the last name Ali is synonymous

she told us. Laila’s number one tip to make the

with the word ‘Champ.’ So many little girls

most significant impact on one’s overall health

grow up with a twinkle in their eye, worshipping

and wellbeing is to make sure to drink plenty

their fathers and believing that their dad is the

of purified water. “I aim to drink 1/2 my body

G.O.A.T. I know I did. I still do. Yet, not too many

weight in ounces daily,” Laila shared. “If you’re 150

of those girls can actually say their dad holds

pounds, you would drink 75 ounces daily.”

the real title. Laila Ali is the daughter of largerthan-life global icon and, who most believe to be, The Greatest of All Time heavyweight boxing champion Muhammed Ali.

Just like the powerful and well-known lessons from her father, Laila, too, is full of life’s wisdom. “It’s really important to identify what your values are in life. You have to know what’s

While that’s on a whole ‘nother level of how cool

important to you, what you’re passionate about,

is that, consider the fact that Laila Ali herself

and what you are willing to stay dedicated to.

holds the title undefeated World Champion

Those answers look like something different for

Boxer with a 24-0 record. I guess the saying is

each of us and basically help you sum up your

true- the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.

life’s purpose. Once you know the answers to

Having witnessed what it takes to develop the

those questions, it’s important to stay grounded

strength and skills in the ring, it’s the applied

and focused so you can make sure you’re

and unwavering mental skills that have fostered

always moving in the right direction towards

this champion. Laila shared with us that boxing

your purpose in life.”

is and will always be her first love. “I went into the sport without any experience as an athlete in general. I knew that I wanted to become a world champion and stay undefeated. It took a lot of self-belief, determination, and consistent hard work in the gym. Achieving that goal gives me a tremendous amount of confidence in everything I do. But it all starts with self-belief.” These days, Laila focuses her attention on a wellness mission to educate and empower people to improve their quality of life through healthy living. When it comes to beauty, aging, and wellness, Laila shares that she believes we are all blessed with each year that passes. “I focus on getting better in life. I listen to my body as it changes so I know what it needs regarding food, supplements, sleep, and exercise. What worked for me 20 years ago isn’t necessarily going to be the best thing for me now. So, I stay open-minded

And while we live in a world that often wants to tell us what to do and what to think, it takes the courage of a champion to speak your truth. Laila understands the importance of

“ I focus on getting better in life. I listen to my body as it changes so I know what it needs regarding food, supplements, sleep, and exercise. ” HOLIDAY ISSUE 53


Follow www.lailaali.com

54 HOLIDAY ISSUE


transparent expression so that you don’t live

tribe carefully, but I actually don’t take myself

in fear and can be true to your beliefs. That’s

very seriously and have a big sense of humor.”

because, as she shared with us, her greatest

Her fun and up-for-anything personality has,

advice in living your best life is to focus on

however, shown up in her appearances on

listening to your inner voice or intuition.

shows such as The Masked Singer, Dancing With

“Every time I allow myself to be persuaded by

The Stars, The Apprentice, and her hosting of

someone else’s opinion, I end up regretting

American Gladiators. Laila’s always-learning

that I didn’t go with my own gut feelings,” Laila

mentality can be found in what I like to call

confided. “It definitely takes practice, but once

‘The Successful Personal Playbook.’ She has

you get used to trusting yourself, the easier it

used her experiences and affections to fuel

becomes.”

her brand. “I appreciate that I have been able

While as strong as she is in both her mind and body, Laila also knows the importance of surrounding herself with forward-moving, positive people. “My husband is my biggest champion. He knows my best and worst

to take my passion for cooking, health, and wellness, etc., and turn it into a business that helps improve people’s lives and offer them inspiration to become the greatest version of themselves.”

qualities and loves me unconditionally. He also

Laila continues her family’s legacy in the

challenges me in a way that no one else has

humanitarian work that always remains at

or can! I can truly say that he has made me a

the forefront of everything she is a part of. “I

better person than I was before I met him.”

have multiple organizations that I support,”

Interestingly, Laila shared that she sometimes feels people who don’t know her personally think she is serious and guarded. “Growing up as the daughter of a global icon definitely shaped me into someone who chooses her

Laila proudly shared. “Some of them are listed on my website through my Fan Corner. I donate 100% of the profit from sales to charity because I feel it’s important to give back, and I’m blessed to be able to do so.”


Questions

Q: A:

Any secrets you can pass on to our readers?

Q: A:

I don’t have any big secrets, but I get my nails and pedicure done every two weeks. Being well manicured makes me feel good!

What is the one beauty tip you learned from a loved one, and who is that person?

Q: A:

My mother taught me to always remove makeup and clean my face before going to bed at night. She also taught me to invest in highquality, clean skincare products.

How do you define beauty? To me, a person who loves and appreciates herself/himself enough to figure out the best way to take care of themselves spiritually, emotionally, and physically will exude true beauty. Beauty comes from within.

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“To me, a person who loves and appreciates herself/himself enough to figure out the best way to take care of themselves spiritually, emotionally, and physically will exude true beauty. Beauty comes from within.”

HOLIDAY ISSUE 57




Photography by Christine Comina IG @cominaphotography

Arianne ZUCKER

Like Sands through the

Hourglass… 60 HOLIDAY ISSUE


I

f you’re a Days of our Lives fan, you know how the rest goes. Not too many could understand those words better than

Arianne Zucker, who has spent the last 23 years playing the wild and emotional character Nicole Walker on the hit daytime soap opera. When asked about her experience on the show, Arianne shared, “I’ve got the best job on the planet! I’ve grown up on the show and so many have been right there along with me, it’s a true joy. We have such a strong bond with the actors and entire production team. We are only one of two soap operas that are family owned, and it feels just that, like a family.” I also asked Arianne about some of her favorite story lines. “I’ve had a lot,” she told me. “The joy of playing a character like Nicole is that I’m not part of the tight knit family like the Brady’s, Hortons or Dimeras, which allows me to play in any storyline. I’ve done some crazy stuff!” Ari said one of the funniest scenes she filmed was with John Aniston, who plays Victor Kiriakus. “In the scene, his character locked me in one of the rooms and wouldn’t allow me to leave the

“ I really discovered in my 40s the importance of relationships with other women and the amazing energy that my friends provide. ” In 2007, she co-created the non-profit organization, ARROW-HEART Adventure Camps, with her brother, Todd Zucker. ARROW-HEART is a youth leadership program that makes a positive impact on the lives of young people by inspiring them to make better choices, build character, confidence, credibility, and critical thinking skills.

mansion. He came over to me, and I thought

Arianne currently hosts her own podcast

he was going to grab me but instead he pushed

“Everything From A to Z,” where she holds

me out the window! I couldn’t stop laughing!

a free and unscripted conversation as a

He is an amazing actor, person, and has taught

positivity advocate and champion for others

me so much. My favorite storyline of all was the

to be their own heroes. She continues that

baby switch that went on for two years. It was

positive impact through Aloha Life Coaching,

very emotional and heartfelt.”

a growth and transformation program started

While not working on Days of Our Lives, Arianne has dedicated herself to making a positive impact in the lives of others. “Growing up in

with her fiancée Shawn Christian, whom many will recognize from his Days role as Dr. Daniel Jonas.

Southern California, I started volunteering at

From her early days of modeling to her years

a young age. It’s always been a big part of my

in television, film, and national commercials,

life and something that’s important to me,”

Arianne is using her experience and thousands

she shared of her philanthropic motivations.

of hours of emotional training combined

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with her innate ability to affect people through story to make a connection that translates to the viewer and now coaching clients. This is a connection she’s been able to tap into, which earned her three Daytime Emmy nominations, an Independent Series award, and a Soap Opera Digest Award win. And while the accolades are representative of her skills as an actor, it’s the ability to transfer those skills learned that is providing her the biggest reward. Of this, Arianne says “I love helping someone get to the next step, the next goal. With Aloha Life Coaching, we get to provide the tools, support people in their mindset shift, and follow their journey. It’s so exciting! I think for women especially, for them knowing they are not the only one going through life’s challenges.” Through our conversation, we talked about motherhood, self-love, and the impact that beauty and wellness play in her life. “I’ve been fortunate in terms of my body,” she said. “When I was younger, I was diagnosed with IBS. I had issues with dairy and would always get sick. I ended up cutting out dairy and gluten. I spent time really educating and understanding how the body works and started adding more fiber to my diet, which has helped me become much more balanced. I also swear by Black Elderberry.” Arianne said she defines beauty in many ways. In particular, “When [I] feel healthy, getting my sleep, and taking care of myself and my relationships.” She also told us, “I really discovered in

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my 40s the importance of relationships with

we also need to upkeep what’s going on

other women and the amazing energy that

internally.”

my friends provide.”

With her many personal and professional

I asked Arianne to share one beauty tip

outlets and positive outlook, it’s clear

that was passed on to her from a loved

Arianne Zucker is truly creating the life

one, and she had this to say: “I grew up

she imagined. “Love is my life driver,” says

with bad eczema. My mom gave me a jar

Arianne. “The best gift we have is choosing a

of Vaseline, and I would slather it all over.

rewarding life of love and happiness.”

Still to this day I use Vaseline on my hands and feet.” One beauty product that Arianne says she’s addicted to is FortiEYE Pixi firming

Follow Ari on IG @ari8675 Coaching www.alohalifecoaching.com

eye patches. “I use them every morning

Everything From A to Z Podcast https://

for hydration. The key is to keep them in

ariannezucker.com/podcast

the fridge! I also love Flawless Dermaplane

If you are interested in learning more about

Facial Exfoliator by Finishing Touch. It removes all the dead skin and makes my skin smooth. I want to feel amazing for my age,” shared Arianne, “and I believe in the

ARROW-HEART Adventure Camps go to www.arrowheartadventurecamps.org Donate Today!

importance of upkeep. We can do things on the outside to make us feel good, and

“ We can do things on the outside to make us feel good, and we also need to upkeep what’s going on internally. ”

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Spe Spct Sp eacteclac cetac l Pe e l Pe er f o Pe r fro m r rm for a nce amnce a nce CrCr èm Cr èemèm e e $ 8 7$.8070$.8070. 0 0 A new A new Amultitasking new multitasking multitasking moisturiser moisturiser moisturiser addressing: addressing: addressing: • Skin • Skin •dullness Skin dullness dullness • Dehydration • Dehydration • Dehydration • Inflammation • Inflammation • Inflammation all all in one all in one indose. one dose. dose. OurOur packaging Our packaging packaging uses uses new uses newnew sustainable sustainable sustainable materials: materials: materials: • A•sawdust A•sawdust A sawdust tube tube tube • Hemp • Hemp • Hemp fibre fibre box fibre boxbox • Printed • Printed • Printed withwith soy with soy inksoy ink ink these these are these are farare far friendlier far friendlier friendlier to the to the to Earth the Earth than Earth than than traditional traditional traditional papers papers papers andand plastics. and plastics. plastics. Simplifying Simplifying Simplifying skincare skincare skincare whatever whatever whatever your your lifestyle. your lifestyle. lifestyle.

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FAN FAVORITE FROM REAL HOUSEWIVES OF NEW JERSEY

Margaret Josephs

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W

hen I spoke to the

Real Housewives of New Jersey, which

quick-witted Margaret

she joined in 2017. Since then, she

Josephs, she was in the

has hosted a podcast series, written

middle of filming the next season of

a book, and she’s not stopping. Next

RHONJ. I had just finished reading

year, Margaret and her partner Lexi

her book Caviar Dreams, Tuna Fish

will expand the lifestyle brand with

Budget, so I was looking forward to

plans for loungewear and a mocktail

our interview. Inside the pages of

line called Soirée, a 50-calorie non-

her book, Margaret goes far past

alcoholic drink that can double

what many would divulge, sharing

as a mixer. “I don’t drink alcohol,”

details about her personal life and

Josephs confided, “I typically drink

going beyond what you see or know

an iced tea or cranberry and club

of her from the show. “It was a

soda when I’m out, so I wanted to

labor of love, reliving past moments

create a fabulous product that was

of my life,” shared Josephs. “One

on brand and tasted great.”

of the reasons I decided to write a book is that I didn’t start the show until I was 49 years old. I had (an) entire life before I started the show and wanted to share my story with others.”

One of the things that’s so refreshing about Margaret is her transparency, especially when it comes to having cosmetic procedures. Because my background is in the aesthetic field, I asked her if she ever had any

For those who aren’t aware,

hesitation about being open as so

Margaret Josephs is a busy woman.

many in the public eye continue

In 1999, she launched her lifestyle

to deny having procedures done.

brand, Macbeth Collection, from her

Margaret shared, however, that she

kitchen table and has grown it into

had no hesitation. “It’s nothing to be

a global business empire. Josephs

ashamed of; there’s not a woman

also founded sister brands Candie

out there wrinkle-free at a certain

Couture by Margaret Josephs, House

age. Gravity changes and if we want

Candie by Margaret Josephs, and

to do something that makes us feel

her signature line Margaret Josephs.

better than we should.” Margaret

She is best known to the public as a

shared her procedures with the

fan favorite on Bravo’s hit series The

world when she underwent facial

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“I’m interested in finding out about how people got started and how they grew their success. It’s never an overnight success and I want people to know that anything is possible.” rejuvenation with our mutual friend and

life. Between TV filming and running her

highly-skilled, board-certified facial plastic

lifestyle brand, she also hosts a podcast with

surgeon Dr. Mark Karolak. “I wanted to look

her Creative Director Lexi Barbuto where

like me, just refreshed. Seeing yourself on

they interview entrepreneurs, dreamers,

high-definition TV and being photographed

and disruptors. When asked about her

from every angle is a whole different

inspiration for the podcast, Josephs said, “I’m

ballgame. I can’t tell you how many people,

interested in finding out about how people

when they meet me, comment on how

got started and how they grew their success.

much smaller I look in person. The camera

It’s never an overnight success and I want

is not always your friend!” In 2020 Margaret

people to know that anything is possible.”

decided to have a breast reduction and lift, or as she says, “perk up the girls!” She went to top-rated, board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Joseph Michaels.

Before we hung up, I had to ask Margaret how she handles those crazy Real Housewife Reunions. She confidently answered, “I’m not afraid to call out what I see. No matter what

When you read Margaret’s book, it is easy

the situation, I’m comfortable in my own

to understand that connection and work

skin, and I will always stay true to myself.”

ethic have been constants throughout her 68 HOLIDAY ISSUE


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Margaret’s

Personal Beauty Tips & Tricks

1

2

I don’t drink alcohol-

Vita Liberata Body Blur in

Zero!

Medium Latte & Embryolisse

3

SiO Eye Patches

FOLLOW @therealmargaretjosephs

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Lisa LOEB GRAMMY AWARD WINNER

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W

hile many people were isolated

the wisdom she’s gained from living it. ”

during the pandemic, Grammy

When I looked back at my most popular

award-winning artist Lisa Loeb

song,” (yes, that 1994 platinum-selling

used her time to create art and connect.

Number 1 hit song “Stay”), ‘it was such

From tap dancing classes to learning

a personal song that connected with so

Japanese, Lisa was continually busy with

many people, and I wanted that again.”

her family and work but found time to

Lisa says that her music has evolved with

pursue interest that brought her joy. One

age, her experiences, and learning about

of her creative projects stemmed from

the experiences of others. “Life brings so

a reunion zoom call with fellow Brown

many moments of connecting and sharing.

University alumni that led to musical

There is something so powerful about a

theatre through the magic of zoom. Lisa’s

personal story. I wanted to write songs you

inspiration, Together Apart, became a

would carry with you for the day, that you

collaborative effort including 100 alumni

could relate to, and that I enjoy singing. It’s

exploring moments during the pandemic.

about seeing all sides of life, realizing you

Comprised of short musicals written,

are strong, and even through the dark side,

composed, directed by, and starring the

seeing the hope.”

Brown University graduates, this digital platform has raised close to $40,000 for The Actors Fund.

With the upcoming holidays, Lisa said that a standalone song she wrote called “Light” stands out to her. “Its central theme is

Lisa’s unique storytelling can be found

hope. I wanted to get in touch with the

in her latest album A Simple Trick to

essence of the holiday, which to me is the

Happiness, a collection of personal songs

story of the miracle of the Hanukkah lights

filled with experiences from Lisa’s life and

which shares the message that no matter

“ it’s all about the basics ...I make sleep a priority, take naps when needed, get regular exercise, and eat well. I eat what I like and stop when I’m full. ”

what there is always hope.” In addition to her many hats, glasses happen to be Lisa’s best accessory. Recognized for her iconic cat-eyed rims, Lisa realized years ago that what was once something that she believed pulled the focus away from her art actually provided a deep connection with her fans. “People come up to me whether it’s at concerts or on airplanes and share with me that I helped make them more confident wearing glasses. For over 10 years now I’ve been overseeing the business and eyewear design of Lisa Loeb Eyewear.” Lisa’s

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collection features frames for every look

think about people’s outer beauty a lot; I

and occasion, bridging the gap between the

think about their ability to connect and the

workplace and everyday chic. “We make

electricity they give, their kindness and how

frames that make people feel comfortable,

they look at the world. That’s beautiful.”

flirty, and pretty.”

Lisa is happy to share that with age

Lisa says when it comes to beauty and

she’s learned to enjoy the depths of her

wellness, it’s all about the basics for her.

experiences and to stop and enjoy the

“I make sleep a priority, take naps when

moments. ‘I don’t have tattoos, but if I did

needed, get regular exercise, and eat well.

it would be of a glass-half full. I believe it’s

I eat what I like and stop when I’m full.

such an important message. Whether it’s

Overall, it’s really about balance. When it

guided meditation, taking a walk, or scrolling

comes to make up, I believe less is more. I’ve

through social media finding some cute cat

learned how to put on makeup; I get regular

pictures, always be hopeful and use what’s

haircuts and wear sunscreen every day.

in your own toolbox to rebalance and reset.”

Smiling is the cheapest facelift.”

Lisa is currently touring and can be seen

When it comes to overall beauty, Lisa shares

in another upcoming Together Apart on

that she appreciates all aesthetics. “I don’t

Broadway on demand.

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Life brings so many moments of connecting and sharing. There is something so powerful about a personal story.

CONNECT WITH LISA LOEB Together Apart

Buy Lisa Loeb Eyewear:

https://togetherapartmusical.com/

www.lisaloebeyewear.com

Sign up for Lisa’s mailing list:

Buy Lisa Loeb merch:

https://www.lisaloeb.com/mailing-list

https://lisa-loeb.myshopify.com/

Book Lisa Loeb video messages

Listen to Lisa’s latest album

on Cameo:

“A Simple Trick to Happiness”

www.cameo.com/lisaloeb

https://open.spotify.com/

HOLIDAY ISSUE 75


Books & Media

we love

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I’ve Got a Secret! Women are superheroes! I revealed this major secret on my podcast recently: you should make yourself a priority, but it doesn’t have to be EVERY single day!

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W

hether you’re working, playing, or maybe looking for a quick escape from the realities of day-to-day, podcasts are the easiest way to stay on top of your favorite subjects. We caught up with philanthropist, television personality, and two-time #1 New York Times bestselling author Robin McGraw about her wildly entertaining and inspiring podcast I’ve Got a Secret. Her nothing-off-limits, entertaining conversation-style show provides the inside scoop on topics like beauty, fashion, motherhood, health, and so much more. With her daily presence on the Dr. Phil show since 2002 and candid discussions of her own life experiences, Robin can be considered a subject matter expert in interviewing. Robin doesn’t shy away from the issues we face as women in our many phases of life. What makes I’ve Got a Secret so special is the ease with which Robin leads the conversation, making the listener laugh, learn, and have some great conversation take-aways. Having had interviews and discussions with

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some of the most well-known thoughtleaders, political pioneers, innovators, and experts, Robin shared with Ask Us Beauty that in over 80 episodes there hasn’t been one that she didn’t love. “Oh my gosh, I love all of them,” She said. “I stay in touch with everyone that comes on the podcast, and they all have become dear friends of mine. Phillip will probably want me to say my favorite was his episode, LOL!” As a strong advocate for women, Robin provides advice for those juggling career, family, and still trying to make themselves a priority. “Women are superheroes! I revealed this major secret on my podcast recently: you should make yourself a priority, but it doesn’t have to be EVERY single day! There is pressure to succeed in every area of your life, but it just isn’t realistic to do it all at the same time. Sometimes you have to dial back on certain areas to focus on others. That’s okay! Just never forget about those areas because they’ll need extra love sometimes too.” Robin revealed what works for her is to adopt


regular rituals to recharge and reconnect to the woman that she is. “I love to take baths and journal at night,” she shared. “It’s a part of my daily routine, so making time for myself feels natural!” As we do with all our contributors, we asked Robin how she defines beauty. She had this to say: “Beauty has nothing to do with your physical looks. Beauty is confidence, beauty is empathy, beauty is being curious about the world...When I see a truly beautiful woman, I’m not thinking about her hair or skin. Beauty, to me, is an undeniably warm energy that glows from within. There’s not a lipstick in the world that can create TRUE beauty! I love doing this podcast because it feeds my hunger for knowledge, passion, camaraderie, and FUN! All things that create TRUE BEAUTY!” Right on, Robin! If you haven’t tuned in yet, don’t wait any longer. Grab your friends, become a member of Robin’s ‘Secret Squad’ and check out her Apple Top 100 Podcast, www.ivegotasecretwithrobinmcgraw.com.

Another Podcast A

we love

s a 46-year-old woman on a selfrecreation journey herself, Dr. Sarah Milken inspires women to take small steps and feel the motivation towards self-reinvention. “This isn’t the midlife crisis. It’s the Midlife Remix!” As the creator and host of the podcast, “The Flexible Neurotic.” Dr. Sarah and her female listeners are all about recreating themselves in the second half of life.

Dr. Sarah Milken @theflexibleneurotic

Before beginning her podcast, Dr. Sarah received her Ph.D. in Educational Psychology and taught in the graduate school of education at USC. After serving on several philanthropic boards and a Los Angeles private school and taking time off to raise her two

children (now teens), Dr. Sarah realized she needed to recreate herself and capitalize on all of her strengths; hence the Flexible Neurotic podcast was born. So, what does the Flexible Neurotic even mean? This means that Dr. Sarah is a master at curating information, neurotically asking profound questions, and turning it into actionable items… This is precisely what she does by weaving in her own current midlife remix journey through her interviewing and giving the audience real actionable and life transformational steps that she calls golden nuggets. Check out her podcasts IG theflexibleneurotic HOLIDAY ISSUE 79


Becoming

Relatable

With Rachel DeAlto Chief Dating Expert for the popular dating site, Match.com

You can keep up with Rachel and pick up your copy of Relatable here www.racheldealto.com. IG @racheldealto

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R

achel DeAlto is a relationship expert, coach, media personality, and author, to name a few. Most recognized from the TV show Married at First site, Rachel often appears on the Today show, Good Morning America, Access Hollywood and provides her prowess as the Chief Dating Expert for the popular dating site, Match. com. Rachel is grounded in her belief that relationships are the foundation of everything. It is essential to learn to navigate those relationships with excellent communication, perspective, and selfawareness. Her latest project is the release of her book Relatable, How to Connect with anyone anywhere, even if it scares you. “I am so excited for Relatable to be in the world. I have been studying relationships for a decade, and the idea of the power of relatability came to me several years ago. And seeing it on shelves and in people’s hands is overwhelming. Our relationships are so meaningful. With her authentic and tell-it-like approach to writing, Rachel has created a fun and practical formula for stepping up your relationship game! It’s all about the power of connection and how you can start and build that muscle. Inside the pages of Relatable includes several ways to build confidence. “I believe to be the most impactful is when we dig out the root. We can take Tylenol for a headache, but we need to understand where it comes from if we keep getting that headache. It’s the same for confidence. We aren’t born with a lack of confidence. It happens. It happens through our environment and relationships that have

negatively impacted us. As Jay Z says, we can’t heal what we don’t reveal. As we do with all our contributors, we asked Rachel how she defines beauty. “By our hearts, Rachels says. Show me a beautiful soul over a face any day.” Rachel also shared what makes her feel most beautiful is the love she feels from her family and friends, and though it took a minute to get back to it, the love she feels for herself. And while she holds many jobs, Rachel shared that being a mother and partner above all else ranks #1. “Every accolade, every opportunity, means nothing without love.” We asked Rachel what she was planning next. She shared, “Well, I’m definitely not writing a book for a while, haha, but I will be doing a ton of speaking. I’ve been blessed to have amazing clients reaching out to support, so hopefully, I end up on a stage near you!”

“ It is essential to learn to navigate those relationships with excellent communication, perspective, and selfawareness.”

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Get Happy By Dia Wall | @diawall12

H

ave you ever looked at your life and realized despite all the gifts around you, you still feel empty and unfulfilled? You aren’t alone.” Dia Wall is a woman who landed her dream job, married the perfect guy, and had the beautiful children she dreamed of, then realized none of that was enough to make her happy. Through people, experiences, highs, and lows of her life, Día Wall is sharing the lessons learned about happiness and how to keep it despite any circumstance. “You will laugh a lot, reflect on your own life and find out that you have everything you need to go from being the unhappiest one in the room to a person who radiates limitless joy and purpose. “I wrote the book so that women would see that they aren’t alone. I’m not that much different from them, and maybe the next woman is not that much different from they are,” shares the awardwinning journalist. “I want women to be empowered by their own stories. Look back and find out, wow, I’ve already got the toolkit I need to create the life that I want.” The professional host, storyteller, writer, and speaker believes in connecting women through shared experiences and authenticity. She is devoted to developing leaders personally and professionally at every level, with an eye toward the future. Get to know Día and ultimately yourself, as we all work to get happy together.

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Love You More By Toye Penny

T

oye Penny is a Holistic Well-Being Strategist, CEO Mom Interventionist, and author and creator of The Love You More Method. She teaches women how to put their oxygen masks on first, so they can save everyone else around them. Toye Penny is a woman who found herself in the right place at the right time. At the age of just 23, she became the CEO of a luxury day spa. She was financially flexible and established a beautiful lifestyle for herself and her daughter. Still, she had unresolved childhood trauma, carried a high mental load, and felt guilty about how she showed up for her family. “While my facade said, I’ve got it all together in my career, my personal life, relationships, and complete well-being were falling apart.” Toye was carrying internal struggles that she knew she had to address:

losing her mother to Lupus at nine years old, no father present, being sexually abused, becoming a teen mom, and being involved in a tumultuous relationship with an older man by eighteen, to live the life she wanted. She put the work in discovering herself and stepped into herself, having found that everything else falls into place when you are whole and complete within yourself. Now Toye is passing on all she has learned in her book, Love “Them,” Love You More, where she reveals actionable strategies on how you can apply The Love You More Method directly to your life. Toye hopes you can successfully live out your purpose without the insanity while also modeling well-being for generations to come. IG/official_toyepenny www.toyepenny.com

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“Our life is what our thoughts make it.” - Marcus Aurelius

5 Simple Steps. Less Stress. More Happiness

D

r. Caroline Leaf is a cognitive neuroscientist, author, & mental health and mind expert, specializing in cognitive and metacognitive neuropsychology. Dr. Leaf leverages the strategies she has developed working with patients over the last 38 years to help educate readers to how to foster and

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cultivate the power of their own thinking and direct their own brain changes. She believes mind-management, when done correctly, helps facilitate communication between the conscious, the subconscious, and the unconscious mind. This, in turn, gets brain waves flowing in a healthy way, optimizing brain function.


Dr. Leaf is the bestselling author of Switch on Your Brain, Think Learn Succeed, Think and Eat Yourself Smart, and many more. She teaches at academic, medical and neuroscience conferences, churches, and to various audiences around the world. Her latest book Cleaning Up Your Mental Mess offers 5 proven steps to help you overcome the unhealthy thinking habits that contribute to anxiety, depression, and intrusive thoughts and replace them with positive thinking that leads to health, happiness, and success! We asked Dr. Leaf why positivity is so important to brain health and she shared this. “Our neurophysiology is quite literally wired for love. This means we are wired to think positively with optimism because we don’t have a single cell in our body that is organized around toxicity or damage because the latter would threaten survival. We are therefore drawn to the negative to fix it in order to ensure survival. Thinking positively is not just replacing a toxic thought with a positive thought - that’s like putting a band-aid on an open wound or chopping the head off a weed - the causative factor is still there so it doesn’t work. Positive thinking is way deeper and more complex. Your body and brain are finely attuned to your uniqueness and the positive balance and authenticity of your mind. You are essentially wired for love, right down to the genetic level. Therefore, the more you manage yourself through self-regulation, the more your brain and body will respond in positive and constructive ways because of the psycho neurophysiological [mind-brain-body] connection. So, it’s totally ok to make a

mess, as long as we manage the mess in order to repair and grow. We manage our mental mess through embracing it, processing it to find the root, and then reconceptualizing it to make it work for us and not against it.” Dr. Leaf goes on to share that you can’t change the past or what’s happened to you, but you can change what’s in your mind and how it plays out into your future. “This is positive mind management. Mindmanaging means the brain will respond in a healthy way (improving blood flow, oxygen, and energy waves) because the mind both shows up in and drives brain function.” Whether you are struggling in your personal life or simply want to learn how to understand and use your mind to live your best life, Dr. Leaf’s books provide practical & scientific tips and tools to help you take back control over your mental, emotional, and physical health.

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We offer a variety of packages and memberships with different levels of support and investment. Access to net travel rates and unique travel deals for your clientele.

www.habitatsbykat.co HABITATS BY KAT PROVIDES THE NECCESSARY PLATFORMS FOR THOSE INTERESTED TO BUILD THEIR OWN TRAVEL BUSINESS AND BRAND. WE BELIEVE EACH ENTREPRENEUER SHOULD BE EMPOWERED TO DEVELOP THEIR OWN BRAND VOICE AND HBK IS THE SECRET TO.

FOUNDERS KAT AND SAM, WHO ARE ALSO TWIN SISTERS, PERSONALLY MENTOR EVERY CONSULTANT WHO JOINS HBK.


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MEET THE AESTHETIC LEADERS

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PLASTIC SURGEON

DOCTOR SMITA The definition of beauty in the Oxford dictionary is ‘a combination of qualities… that please the aesthetic senses, especially the sight.’ While we, as plastic surgeons, learn about the ideals of beauty based on various proportions and symmetry and often use these as a surgical framework, true beauty comes from within. Self-assurance, confidence, being comfortable in your own skin, is beautiful. While we may learn about these beauty ideals, our main goal as a plastic surgeon is to foster confidence in each of our patient’s lives.

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would later choose,” Dr. Smita reflected. Now double board-certified in both general and plastic surgery, Dr. Smita shared that she chose the field of plastic surgery in a roundabout way. “I graduated medical school extremely interested in general surgery,” she said. “I headed to Dallas, Texas, to pursue my general surgery training at UT Southwestern. It was during my years as a general surgery resident, however, that I realized I missed the creativity and artistic aspect that I previously got from art.” So Dr. Smita began to look at plastic surgery a little more seriously and rotated with the plastic surgery service at the University of Texas Southwestern during her fourth year as a general surgery resident. “I was immediately hooked! I loved the breadth of the cases, the creativity, and the artistic aspect. More importantly, I loved that we were able to truly improve our patients’ quality of life and confidence, which is such a beautiful thing and so rewarding.”

S

urrounded by role models all her life, the career path chosen by Dr. Smita Ramanadham, who goes by Dr. Smita, was not a surprise to anyone. Dr. Smita was born to immigrant parents, her mother a pediatrician, and her father a pharmacist. Dr. Smita spent most of her early years focused on her schooling and learning about other interests, especially art. “I was rather shy growing up, and art became an outlet in which I could express myself. Whether it was painting, drawing, or pottery, I loved them all. What I didn’t realize at the time was that this talent that I had would blend so well with the profession I

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In addition to serving her aesthetic patients in her practice and her role as a member of the editorial board for Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery- the number one ranked plastic surgery journal- and Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery: Global Open, Dr. Smita hosts an Instagram show with another one of our featured Ask Us Beauty female aesthetic leaders, Dr. Amalfi. The two met in 2017 at the Women Plastic Surgeons Enrichment Retreat in California. “Ashley and I joke that we actually started up a conversation because we both were using the same purse. We immediately hit it off and would run into each other over the following years at various other meetings,” Dr. Smita told us. It was a very natural friendship that soon developed


and has created a powerful duo with their Lipstick and Lipo podcast platform. “We really wanted to meet our patients where they were and provide education about plastic surgery in a very real, relatable, and interactive way. Much of the information about plastic surgery on social media is not from board-certified plastic surgeons, so it was extremely important for us to be out there and visible. Lipstick and Lipo is also about us being women in a maledominated field. We wanted to highlight that we can be supportive of each other and empower each other as female surgeons. We wanted to be an example for the younger generations of upcoming doctors and surgeons that may not see other people that look like them in the field and that they, too, can be plastic surgeons if the desire exists. We also wanted to highlight that while we are surgeons and are required to have a certain personality to succeed in this field, we are also women [who] love fashion and beauty, hence our namesake “Lipstick.” We asked Dr. Smita to share with us her definition of beauty, and these were her words: “The definition of beauty in the Oxford dictionary is ‘a combination of qualities… that please the aesthetic senses, especially the sight.’ While we, as plastic surgeons, learn about the ideals ofbeauty based on various proportions and symmetry and often use these as a surgical framework, true beauty comes from within. Selfassurance, confidence, being comfortable in your own skin, is beautiful. While we may learn about these beauty ideals, our main goal as a plastic surgeon is to foster confidence in each of our patient’s lives.”

Q&A

I’ve lost a lot of weight, and my arms have a lot of loose skin; how do I know if I’m a good candidate for nonsurgical skin tightening? Typically, non-surgical skin tightening is a good option for those patients that have minimal skin laxity or want to improve the quality of the skin. Patients that have lost significant weight are generally better candidates for a Brachioplasty, or arm lift. This, of course, depends on your goals and examination. The best way to know if you are a candidate is to seek a consultation with a board-certified plastic surgeon that can discuss all your options. What exactly is an Arm Lift? An arm lift is a surgical procedure in which excess skin and fat of the upper arm is excised. This is typically done through an incision that runs along the inner arm from the armpit (axilla) to the elbow. It can also be combined with liposuction to improve the overall contour of the arm.

You can find Doctor Smita at www.drsmita.com. Instagram: @thedrsmita Twitter: @thedrsmita Facebook: Smita Ramanadham, MD

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PLASTIC SURGEON

DOCTOR ASHLEY AMALFI “Beauty is all about the way you feel. When patients feel beautiful, you can see it radiate to all parts of their lives. It boosts their own confidence, but also translates into their professional success and fulfillment in their personal lives. Seeing that transformation for my patients is one of the most rewarding parts of my job.”

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r. Ashley Amalfi became interested in medicine and science from a very early age after witnessing the numerous health challenges of her younger sister. “Seeing medicine from the patient and family side of things propelled my deep interest in helping others.” Dr. Amalfi shared that she has always been a perfectionist. “I was meticulous, and nothing bothered me more than a kid who didn’t color inside the lines! I was drawn to working with my hands, and that naturally led to my interest in art as a young girl.” Having won numerous art awards throughout her schooling, Dr. Amalfi decided to pursue dual degrees in Fine Arts and Art History from the prestigious George Washington University. Yet it was during her high school years growing up in Rochester, New York where she had her first experience in the art of changing people’s lives with an opportunity to shadow a few local doctors, one being a pediatric plastic surgeon. “It was the perfect marriage of my passion for science and helping others, as well as the artistic interests and attention to detail that I had been cultivating. I was hooked and never looked back.” Dr Amalfi completed her undergraduate degree in just three years and pursued her Doctor of Medicine degree from the University of Rochester’s School of Medicine and Dentistry, followed by an additional six years of an integrated residency in Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery at Southern Illinois University. Dr. Amalfi shared that her definition of beauty is all about the way you feel. “When patients feel beautiful, you can see it radiate to all parts of their lives. It boosts their own

confidence, but also translates into their professional success and fulfillment in their personal lives. Seeing that transformation for my patients is one of the most rewarding parts of my job.” Dr. Amalfi and her esteemed colleagues see patients at the Quatela Center for Plastic Surgery in Rochester, NY. In addition to her work, Dr. Amalfi and her good friend and colleague, Dr. Smita Ramanadham, created Lipstick & Lipo™ an Instagram TV and YouTube show. “It started as a small idea to educate the public about plastic surgery

during the COVID quarantine in spring of 2020 and has quickly grown. We were featured on TheDoctorsTV discussing our new show and are excited about the buzz it has created. There is really nothing like it out there - two doctors, both women, who have so much in common with the patients we are treating.” For real advice and education about important topics related to aesthetic plastic surgery, check out Lipstick & Lipo™ and follow @DrAshleyAmalfi and @QuatelaCenter_ PlasticSurgery @QMedSpa https://www.quatela.com/ HOLIDAY ISSUE 93


Q&A

It seems like there’s a shift in plastic surgery moving to a more natural look. What are some of the most common procedures? Patients are coming in and asking to look and feel more like themselves. After pregnancy and childbirth, there are so many changes that our bodies go through as women. Mommy makeover procedures are a way to address the physiologic changes that happen to our breasts and abdomen after having our children. Our breasts become saggier and more deflated, and a breast lift using your own tissue, adding a very small implant, or injecting your own fat is a great way to give you back the fuller, rounder breasts you had when you were younger. Nothing is overly fake or overdone, but tastefully complements and fills out your figure. This is my favorite look, because patients look rejuvenated, and they radiate confidence. Liposuction and tummy tuck procedures are also done as part of a mommy makeover surgery. This tightens the abdominal muscles and fixes the diastasis recti, or separation of the abdominal muscles, that happens after we have children and especially after cesarean sections. Adding in liposuction gives us back the hourglass figures we had before pregnancy, and who doesn’t want to just feel better in their jeans!? I love these natural-looking mommy makeovers, and more importantly, the women who walk away feeling like the best version of themselves as they show up for the world,

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their jobs and their families. Can you explain Breast Fat Transfer? Fat transfer to the breast is such an exciting procedure. As we discuss in Lipstick & Lipo™, we call it more of a breast “boost” than a breast augmentation. Fat is a great way to use your own tissue to fill out the concavity in the breast we develop as we age. It doesn’t give the rounded look that an implant does, but for the right candidate, it fills in the gapping that we can get in the upper part of the bra, and that’s so exciting for our patients. Most come in for multiple rounds of fat grafting to achieve their desired shape and size. How do I know if I am a suitable candidate for Breast Fat Transfer? These patients are looking for more of a natural boost with little size change. We can use fat from an area where they desire liposuction, with the added benefit of putting the fat somewhere they would like to have more volume, like the breast. I tell patients not to expect too big of a cup size change, but they can better fill out their existing cup and possibly go up just one bra size.


PLASTIC SURGEON

DOCTOR SHIRLEY MADHERE “Wellness is to beauty what an essential ingredient is to a recipe. The two are fundamentally intertwined; they work well when together. Each may exist independently of the other, but without the other, the essence is incomplete.”

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Dr. Madhere’s perspective is that beauty is a manifestation of wellness and is one of its many dimensions. She believes that when you are well, you radiate on many levels-- and that is undeniably beautiful. “Wellness is to beauty what an essential ingredient is to a recipe. The two are fundamentally intertwined; they work well when together. Each may exist independently of the other, but without the other, the essence is incomplete.” In addition to plastic surgery, Dr. Madhere provides wellness coaching, beauty aisle tutorials, and one-onone coaching. Her latest venture

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PICTURED: KYOKO GETZ

ark Twain said, “Just because you have a hammer, not everything is a nail” Dr. Madhere feels the same way about her scalpel, as her practice is based on a natural approach. This philosophy grew out of her education in general and plastic surgery and training in homeopathy and integrative nutrition. Plastic surgeon, Dr. Shirley Madhere, believes that beauty and healing start from within and that the external appearance reflects inner health of the mind, body, and spirit. Dr. Madhere spends substantial time in each patient consultation to understand the “why” behind their desired procedure, and more importantly, why now? Her discussions revolve around her patient’s desire to change their appearance with solutions provided by non-surgical, surgical, nutrition, mental, social, and financial preparedness.


is Olura Skin Care Technology. This personalized, all-in-one skincare program comes from a trio of experts with over 45+ years of expertise in the fields of beauty, technology, and medicine. A unique system that includes personalized skincare and advanced technology that patients can use at home to defy the effects of aging or to enhance their surgical results. Olura leveraged the knowledge of NYC-based plastic surgeon Dr. Shirley Madhere, former Kate Somerville Product Development Director, Kyoko Getz, and award-winning device developer, Shannon Britt, to deliver

a white-glove experience while helping people achieve their best skin ever. Olura provides a three-in-one system to include “wet” exfoliation on one end and an infusion head on the other to deliver your unique product specifically customized to your skin. “Reclaim your inner and outer beauty, put your best face forward, and feel your best so that you may live your purpose and fulfill your personal mission with integrity.” You can find Dr. Madhere’s at ElementsandGraces.com You can purchase Olura at www.olura.us

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DERMATOLOGIST

DOCTOR SABRINA UDDIN “The satisfaction of watching a disease improve/disappear is like no other in medicine. Patients are highly motivated and exceptionally grateful when their dermatologists can clear up their skin. We give confidence back to patients, and that’s a great feeling.”

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r. Sabrina Uddin grew up in the suburbs of Chicago where she spent most of her early years as a secondary caregiver. Raised by a single mother, Dr. Uddin played a hands-on role in helping take care of her severely autistic older brother. This experience was what initially motivated her decision to pursue the field of medicine.

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chose the field of Dermatology because she loves being able to treat conditions she can see. “The satisfaction of watching a disease improve/disappear is like no other in medicine. Patients are highly motivated and exceptionally grateful when their dermatologists can clear up their skin. We give confidence back to patients, and that’s a great feeling.”

After high school, Dr. Uddin stayed close to home and completed her undergraduate degree nearby at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She then went on to complete her medical degree from the University of Illinois – College of Medicine at Chicago, and she finished her training by completing a three-year Dermatology residency at Loma Linda University Medical Center. Dr. Uddin is trained in both medical and cosmetic dermatology and is board certified by the American Board of Dermatology. She currently practices in Orange County, California.

Dr. Uddin feels blessed to be in a profession where she can make a difference. Her biggest reward comes from helping her patients feel more comfortable taking care of their skin, whether that is a manageable skincare regimen, clearing acne/rosacea, annual skin cancer checks, or simply removing a lesion that was worrisome for them. “I love that my patients leave happy and hopeful.”

Dr. Uddin specializes in medical, surgical, and cosmetic dermatology with a focus on darker skin tones. Dr. Uddin says she

Dr. Sabrina Uddin shares her talent inside the practices of California Skin Institute, one of the largest physicianowned and controlled dermatology practices in the United States. https://www.californiaskininstitute.com/ IG doctor_u_derm

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Q&A

Why is my hair thinning and dull looking as I get older?

As we age, most hair loss is termed “female pattern or male pattern hair loss”. It can be caused by a change in hormones as well as genetic factors. There are also several other types of hair loss that can occur at any time in life. An evaluation by a dermatologist is always the best first step to ensure it is not an inflammatory scalp condition, a deficiency, or related to an underlying condition. What are some good hair growth treatment options? Each treatment is specific to the cause of the hair loss. This is why most dermatologists will not make generalized recommendations for hair supplements. What do you think about the Tik Tok trend, rice water for hair growth- does that work? There are no clinical studies proving the efficacy of rice water specifically for hair growth. This means we have no evidence that rice water helps hair growth. However, the motivation behind this trend is based on a few small studies that show rice bran mineral extract increases hair growth molecules in human cells under a microscope. Theoretically, it cannot hurt, but there is no evidence for this use. Rosemary water? There is a promising clinical study that shows that Rosemary oil is potentially just as effective 100 HOLIDAY ISSUE

as using a low percent (2%) Rogaine. It could be worth a shot if you do not want to try Rogaine. However, most dermatologists would recommend 5% Rogaine, which is likely the most effective topical treatment. Prenatal vitamins? Prenatal vitamins are not harmful to take; however, they do not specifically cause an increase in hair growth. The hair growth that one experiences in pregnancy is usually due to pregnancy hormones that stimulate growth. Gummy vitamins? It depends on the type of gummy vitamins. I always warn patients not take high dose Biotinbased vitamins. Medically speaking, one should consume less than 2,000 mcg of Biotin per day and most gummies have more than that. An excess amount of Biotin can lead to false lab abnormalities, causing misdiagnoses of several conditions such as thyroid disease. More seriously, Biotin causes a decrease in the level of heart enzymes that are elevated when a person is having a heart attack. This means doctors might miss a person having a heart attack if they are taking too much Biotin. In 2017, this actually occurred and resulted in the patient’s death due to an undiagnosed heart attack. Special shampoos? There are currently no shampoos clinically proven to increase hair growth. All shampoos are theoretical. The closest topical which consistently helps improve most types of hair loss is topical 5% minoxidil (Rogaine).


Celebrating 27 Years of Exceptional Jewelry

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company’s commitment to empowering women to live happier, healthier lives. After 17 years in business, the products are available at retailers nationwide including Target, Wal-Mart, CVS, Amazon.com, HEB, and Sally Beauty Supply Store just to name a few. She’s been featured in news outlets such as the Oprah Winfrey Show, on the Forbes 30 under 30 List in 2017, and most recently on Inc Magazine’s 2021 Female Founders list. Jasmine is also a Product Manager at X, the moonshot factory on the Everyday Robot Project. Prior to X, she has held a number of positions creating consumer-focused products for companies like Facebook, Softbank Robotics America, and Microsoft. She earned her Bachelor of Science in Computer Science from Georgia Tech and her Masters in Human-Centered Design and Engineering at the University of Washington.

FIND YOUR PASSION, LIVE YOUR DREAM. Jasmine Lawrence

J

asmine Lawrence is the Founder of EDEN BodyWorks. Devastated by the harsh chemical products, 11-year-old Jasmine

sought to develop her own solution to losing most of her hair. Jasmine used her allowance and love of math and science to create a hair oil to help regrow her hair. At the age of 13, after attending a NFTE BizCamp, Jasmine founded EDEN BodyWorks to share her creations with the world and meet the need for affordable, natural hair and body care products that really work. Over the years the company has expanded from her original creation to over 50 products to meet the needs of curlyhaired women across the globe. The products that EDEN BodyWorks offers complement the

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Outside of work Jasmine is a poet, STEM advocate, and Advisory Board Member for the Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship. www.jasminelawrence.com



Jordan Peden

If You Can’t Achieve It, 104 HOLIDAY ISSUE

weave it!


I

have a hair confession to make. In 2016, I

planned my wedding look. How much easier

shaved part of my head. I know, I know.

would that effortless bohemian look have been

Every now and then I get the urge to do

if I had just gotten a weave? Duh!

something wild with my hair, and that year

It’s no wonder why women love hair extensions.

it just happened to be an undercut. I wanted

They’re literally the answer for almost any hair

something funky and alternative, and I

style crisis. Need a few extra inches to pull

convinced myself it was a look I could achieve

off a high-pony look? Extensions. Want to hit

by shaving a small section of hair just above my

the town with a ‘do you can whip around?

right ear.

Extensions. Shave part of your head but need

An undercut is not a choice you can easily come back from, and luckily for me, I loved mine. It

some length for your wedding hairstyle? Extensions!

was everything I wanted it to be- fun, edgy, and

And as always, Ask Us Beauty is here with a

totally punk rock. But when I got engaged a year

trusted hair extension recommendation. Enter

later, I just couldn’t envision my shaved head in

KmXtend Hair.

my wedding portraits. I decided to grow it out.

KmXtend Hair is a female owned and founded

The whole process was one long awkward

hair extension company that prides itself on

phase that ended in a blunt bob cut once the

offering premium, long lasting hair extensions

new growth was long enough. I didn’t hate it,

to salons and stylists to help women express

but super short hair also wasn’t what I had

their individuality and creativity at a reasonable

dreamed of for my wedding look. I wanted an

price point. These extensions are made

earthy bohemian look with loose waves and a

from 100% human hair and use keratin tips

halo braid propping up a flower crown; instead

and quality tape for a luxurious experience.

I had a mane shorter than my husband’s. Yes,

KmXtend Hair’s mission is to empower women

really.

to feel confident and beautiful with high-quality

Fortunately, my hairstylist is a miracle worker and was able to create the look I longed for with the hair I had. It was beautiful, but my husband

hair extensions for all budgets. This company is changing the game and making it possible for all consumers to achieve their full hair potential.

never misses an opportunity to point out how

If I would have known then what I know now,

much longer and more luscious his hair was

hair extensions would have been a no-brainer.

than mine that day. And he’s not wrong.

Thankfully, I now have KmXtend hair to turn to

What could I have done? I recently heard some incredible advice from Dara Peyton, the best friend of Ask Us Beauty’s Editor in Chief. Dara always used to say, “If you can’t achieve it, weave it!” I could have used

when the only answer is, “If you can’t achieve it, weave it!” KmXtend products can be purchased online at www.kmXtend.com. IG: @kmxtend_hair_extentions

Dara’s words of weave wisdom as I fretfully

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Perfect Brows Written By: Amy Haley-Brox

I

feel put together in some way. That little bit of

with brows? It’s because brows can change

perfect brows is that brow styles change with

n a time when we are all wearing masks, the eyes have become the true focal point of the face, and the brows are center stage

under the spotlight. So why are we obsessed your entire look; they truly are the frame of the face. For example, if we have to run out to do an errand and don’t have time for a full face of make-up, we at least have to ‘put our brows on,’ right? Having our brows on instantly makes us 108 HOLIDAY ISSUE

effort makes such a difference in the way we feel about our appearance. The interesting thing about obtaining the each decade. So let’s take a walk down memory lane. We all had that super-thin, over-tweezed 90’s brow- and we are totally regretting now because the fuller, filled in ‘fluffy brows’ are the new trend. Well, say thank you to Millennials


because they have embraced brows, and with

and is perfect for more sensitive clients. It

that, there has been a resurgence of the quest

stains the skin and tints the brow hairs for a

for perfect brows.

more sculpted brow look. Henna lasts up to

Brow looks are trending on every social media platform so the first step in your perfect brow journey is to seek out a professional and licensed Esthetician, Cosmetologist, permanent makeup artist, or Wax Technician. It’s important to know what types of brow services are provided by professionals. The first type is hair removal and shaping techniques. They are in the form of waxing, tweezing, razor shaping, scissor trimming, and even threading. A brow professional could use one or all of these techniques during your visit. Waxing is the most popular option because it quickly removes a lot of hair at one time, but choosing the right wax is essential to ensure the client has as little pain as possible. The brow area is very delicate, so choosing the proper hair removal for your needs can be tricky. What can I expect at a brow appointment, you ask? A true basic brow-shaping visit will

two weeks on the skin and up to six weeks on the hair and will fade naturally. A new, more permanent way to fill brows is with Microblading. Microblading is all the buzz, but this is kind of permanent. This technique cuts into the skin with a blade or needles to apply tiny strokes that look like brow hairs, and then a pigment color is applied to the strokes. This process can last up to 18 months, and it can be very painful, along with varied complications. Lastly, you can use make-up to fill and color brows. This is the most popular way but can also be the most stressful if you don’t have a talent for it. You can use a brow pencil, colored powder, or even a pomade to shape and fill, but it only lasts until you wash it off. To learn how to perfect this technique, book an appointment with a make-up artist and get a quick lesson on the products and tools to use. So what are you waiting for? Find a professional near you and achieve perfect brows today!

include a hair removal technique, trimming, shaping, and even a powder fill to finish your look. Of course, you can stop at hair removal and shaping, but to ‘Level Up,’ your brows will need to be colored or filled in. Brow color can create the ideal shape and add a fuller appearance to your brows. The ways to achieve this filled-in look are with color and henna tinting, Microblading, or using make-up. Color tinting can be done with a semipermanent dye that tints the hair for up to 4 weeks and has a more translucent look for filling. For a more dramatic fill, henna tinting is suggested. The henna tint is a natural dye HOLIDAY ISSUE 109


COMMUNITY How do you define beauty? Kindness is beautiful. Generosity is gorgeous. And a woman on a mission to help others is a showstopper. Society has convinced us that beauty is a measuring stick. It’s time to change the narrative. The truth is, beauty is an inside job. Own your power, invest in others, and your beauty will never fade.

beauties


Women’s Business League Meet Melissa Gilbo & Amy Pocsik

T

he idea for Women’s Business League (WBL) traces back to the very first time Melissa and Amy met. Over pizza and iced tea, they swapped stories about promoting their services, sales, and being working moms. Eventually, the conversation shifted to networking and the challenges that came with it. “I would collect tons of business cards but make no real connections,” Melissa shared. “I tried structured networking groups, but they were too restrictive, with too many rules and a schedule that didn’t work for me as a working mom.” Amy related, and quickly they realized they could unite their personal networks and build their own community by sharing in one another’s resources. Over time, something magical began to happen. Through contact and friendships, what started as a small group quickly expanded into establishing WBL as a bonafide business. Women’s Business League was born.

Rolodex starts spinning in your head. You tell her, ‘I’m in a women’s business networking group. I know a house cleaner, a math tutor, and a dog walker. They’re all excellent. Would you like their contact info?’ That’s the Rolodex Effect. These conversations and connections happen all the time.” WBL’s unique approach is different from other business referral groups in that their membership is not an obligation; it’s a place to be supported and uplifted. Their members enjoy monthly educational offerings, quarterly accelerators and increased brand exposure. “The personal and professional success of our members is what has us jumping out of bed every morning.” For more on Women’s Business League check out their website at www.womensbusinessleague.com

At WBL, Amy and Melissa want members to feel welcomed, inspired, and a little pampered. WBL gives women an opportunity to take care of their business and themselves. The chapter leaders work hard to make WBL events feel special. “I call it our white-glove service. We go the extra mile for our members because in the WBL community… members are the first priority.” “WBL has been successful because we’re fundamentally different from other networking groups. We see this most often in what I call the Rolodex Effect. Here’s how it works: Let’s say you’re at the hair salon. There’s a woman sitting in the chair next to yours. The two of you start chatting. At one point the woman says, ‘Overall, things are great. But my house is a mess; my son is failing math, and except for bathroom breaks, my dog hasn’t been outside in a week.’ Immediately, your

@womensbusinessleague

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N

uOrganics Cosmetics is one of the natural brands that does what it sets out to do. Starting with the perspective that “We are all beautiful. Nature decided that,” NuOrganics aims to highlight and enhance natural beauty by blending plant-based stem cells with pure and unrefined botanicals and proprietary peptides.

In 2019, Dr. Karazmi, also known as Dr. Mo, was approached to develop a natural but effective cosmetic line. His passion for anti-aging research and knowledge of internal and external factors that promote aging was used to develop these formulations. NuOrganic takes natural ingredients and activates them with peptides and stem cells to stimulate skin cells from deep within the skin layers. Several other cosmetic and nano-scientists were recruited by Dr. Mo to bridge the gap between nature and science and by completing a line of skincare products that everyone can use. With 15 products currently on the market, and 30 more in development, NuO’s success comes from how much people love the products. These rave reviews and testimonials don’t come from paid influencers, rather from real people who see how much the products work. The product highlight reel includes a Vitamin C serum, with 20% stable Vitamin C and Ferulic Acid, an eyelash and eyebrow serum which uses peptides to encourage the hairs to grow thick and long, a 24K gold anti-ageing face cream and a lifting serum full of peptides, as well as a roster of other fabulous products. The ethos behind NuO, as well as creating something that works, is to create a product that is affordable. These products are all available for no more than $60. For more information on NuOrganic products go to http://www.nuorganic.com HOLIDAY ISSUE 113


Timeless

BEAUTIES Gail Zelitzky & Catherine Marienau

Get To Know Gail & Catherine (GZ) I was born in 1941 on Chicago’s north side. My mother and her sister married my father and his brother, nine years apart. Between them, they had five children, in addition to the two children from another sister and one child from another brother. The eight of us grew up together, forever cementing the importance of cousins, aunts, and uncles to our lives. When I was eight 114 HOLIDAY ISSUE

years old, my father opened a new business, Foremost Sales Promotions, Inc., which franchised independent liquor stores. I loved going with him to visit the store owners in their attic offices, playing among the beer kegs and listening to them talk. I married at 19, graduated from college with a degree in elementary school, and had three children. I became a stay-at-home mom because


our second child was emotionally and mentally challenged, similar to my husband, who left us after 15 years. I found myself in a difficult situation. I had no way to make a living, and our home was soon to be underwater since no one paid the mortgage. My father then offered me a job in his company and helped us move to a smaller home. From the beginning, I loved working with him. I interacted with our multi-ethnic store owners, became ‘Madalyn Sherry,’ and wrote a wine newsletter; I created public events and learned best practices in marketing, merchandising, sales promotions, operations consulting, and leadership. I always said I received my Doctor’s Degree from working with my father. In spite of how difficult those years were, I flourished. In 1980, I married the love of my life, and we spent 29 wonderful years together. He died in 2009, and I currently live solo in a beautiful high-rise in downtown Chicago. (CM) I was born in 1949 to a farm family in west-central Minnesota, where I lived in a multi-generational home for many years. I attended a one-room country schoolhouse for grades 1-6. I was a good student in high school, popular with several different groups, and homecoming 1st princess. At age 18, I was crowned Fiesta Queen (1967-68), which followed the Miss America format (known as a beauty pageant at that time). My role was to represent my hometown at pageants and festivals around the state. I began college at the University of Minnesota in autumn 1967. I struggled with the image of being a ‘beauty queen’ and model, particularly as I became active in women’s and civil rights movements, which has continued to the present. I earned my degrees at the University of Minnesota- BA in anthropology, MA in HOLIDAY ISSUE 115


social and philosophic foundations of education (anthropology and education), and Ph.D. in curriculum and instruction with an emphasis on innovative education for adult learners. My 50+ year career has always centered on innovative adult higher education, creating degree programs, teaching and mentoring, researching and writing, and presenting. I have consulted and conducted workshops with colleges in Ireland and East Africa. Teaching, writing, and presenting about women’s issues have been my passion since the early 1980s. I am currently focusing on Women Over 70: Aging Reimagined, and I am co-authoring a book on holistic health options for postmenopausal women. Currently, I live solo in a progressive community just outside Chicago proper, near my 31- year-old daughter. Gail, how did you and Catherine meet? (GZ) After my first husband left us, I decided to go for a master’s degree in business and enrolled at Loyola University. I was in my first year when I met my future husband. I was working full time, responsible for three children, and active in several organizations. I realized something had to go if I was to nurture this new relationship, so I dropped out. When Al died, I knew the time was right and enrolled in DePaul University’s School for New Learning, which allowed me to use life experiences for certain coursework. To my delight, Catherine was assigned as my faculty mentor, and I took a few courses with her. Once I matriculated at 74, we became good friends, continued to meet regularly, and discovered our common interests: women’s issues and learning. As Catherine prepared to retire and was turning 70, I mentioned my desire to interview 70 women over 70 and to create

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a podcast. She said, “I’m in,” and thus began our odyssey towards learning how to podcast, developing it as a business, and finally launching Women Over 70: Aging Reimagined in June 2019. What does age mean to you, and what do you enjoy most about being your age? (GZ) I love parties and happily look forward to all my birthday celebrations- at every age. Until I turned 70, I never really thought about getting older. Life has always been interesting and full of adventure, and it seems to me I will go on forever. Happily, longevity is in my genes. I love how I am seen today as having wisdom to share, and I am blessed with life-long friends who make every day meaningful. (CM) I have always been conscious of my age, marking each decade and halfdecade with notable celebrations with family and friends, usually involving travel. Each milestone is an opportunity to reflect on the past and anticipate what might come next. Now I enjoy having the freedom and time to pursue my passion projects and connect with family and friends in a more leisurely fashion. I am also more confident in expressing my voice about many issues, most importantly that women over 70 matter. What is your favorite beauty product? (GZ) Purity One-Step Facial Cleanser by Philosophy. (CM) Clarins. What advice would you give the younger generation when it comes to beauty/ wellness? (GZ) Make time for yourself- you deserve it. And exercise, nutrition, and well-being will make you ageless.


“ I love how I am seen today as having wisdom to share, and I am blessed with life-long friends who make every day meaningful.” — Gail Zelitzky

(CM) Get on the wellness train early and make self-care a priority, regardless of all your other commitments and obligations. How do you define beauty? (CM) Being your authentic self and presenting your best self. (GZ) Your inner spirit defines your beautykindness, generosity, and love all help you shine and showcase your beauty. Do you have a motto you live by? (CM) Be kind to others and to yourself; be a friend. (GZ) Stand in your own power.

Gail and Catherine host the podcast Women Over 70: Aging Reimagined. Today, almost 40,000 listeners tune in weekly to the stories celebrating women’s enduring courage, compassion, and contribution. Our compelling stories shatter the myth that we become irrelevant as we age. Older women want to be seen and heard, and most wish to continue making an impact. www.womenover70.com Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ groups/Wo70AgingReimagined/ IG @womenover70



CLOSING THOUGHTS

T

hroughout this issue, we have featured incredible women who have given us an amazing gift. The gift of knowledge! Our Top Docs have shared their personal journey into medicine, our influencers have shared their best tips and gifts, and the life lessons of others have been converted into meaningful work, media, and books. Within one click, we have access to such a wealth of information and resources that are a wonderful source of new ideas, hope, and inspiration. I am reminded of the value of learning and the opportunity we have every day to learn and grow. Everyone has a story and yet, all too often, we rush past the happenings of life. The holidays are the perfect time to slow down, share stories, and create memorable moments. As you ring in the New Year, may the next chapter of your life be filled with the best of intentions and aspirations.

Be Well,

Amy Breuer Amy Breuer Founder & Managing Editor

HOLIDAY ISSUE 119



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