Monday, December 12, 2011

November Highlights

I’ve decided to start a monthly series in which I showcase the highlights of the previous month. This could be events I’ve attended, products that deserve accolades with a sprinkle of any personal highlights I think worth mentioning.

For the inaugural post of this series, it's only fitting that we start with a beautiful and special event that is dear to me - MBBE 2011. 

MBBE 2011
The Melbourne Beauty Blogging community is a cosy one. We ladies we have met at last year’s MBBE are like family and quite a few of us catch up regularly for lunches, dinner and ‘on the job’ at various events. So when this year’s MBBE gathering came around, it was like another little sorority meeting where we caught up with each other’s lives, work and chatted about our latest beauty favourites (this time it was BB creams).

All this against the beautiful backdrop at Miss Fox – a chic and vintage inspired salon that provides impeccable manicures, luxurious spa experiences and every beauty services in between.

We were given the warmest hospitality by Victoria, the owner and hostess of the event, providing us with refreshing PIMMs cocktail and delectable cupcakes as well as pampering with mini hand massages, manicures with Zoya polishes and mini make overs.

The highlight of the afternoon was a keynote speech by Kate Morris, Founder of Adorebeauty online beauty store and winner of the 2011 Telstra Business Women’s Awards. It was inspiring to hear how her perseverance in dealing with numerous rejections from brands that Ms Morris contacted and wanted to represent online who just wasn’t interested which made her more determined than ever and now many of these big brands are embracing the online era and joining her legions of brands representations at Adorebeauty.

Afterwards, there was a quiz with prizes to be won from Garnier, Guinot, Illamasqua, Endota, Avon and GlossyBox for the smart cookies who manged to get the most answers correct. That quiz was probably as difficult as the most recent CAPM exam I sat for (being unprepared didn't help). 

There was even an award presentation for Jacie for her Online Beauty Writer of the year from Beauty Directory presented by Kimmi of The Plastic Diaries. We were proud as punch and it was as good as winning the award ourselves to have one of our MBBE receive such high accolades.

As always with such events, literally thousands of photos were taken. I thought instead of posting it all up, I'll create a slideshow with my favourite photos to share with you. The music can be switched off if you prefer.

Valerie from Ponikuta must be thanked and congratulated for bringing the new and old MBBE gang together and organising such an amazing event this year. She is the woman who made MBBE a reality and runs around tirelessly for months to plan and co-ordinate activities and sponsorships and made the day such a fabulous success!

P.S - for those of you interested, I didn't end up wearing those pretty red pumps, the beautiful warm day called for a pair of red-hot sandals instead.

The majority of the photos in the slideshow are credited to Brendan Cook, who was our official photographer of the day.

Oscar Oscar Salon
Mid November saw a breakfast champagne event on a bright and early Sunday morning at Oscar Oscar Chadstone hair salon, home of leading hair styling artists and the talented Jackie Chan who works magical kung-fu equivalent of hair styling wonders as seen first hand by yours truly on the day.

We were given some brand overview and product information on Aveda Hair products whose premise is to combine art and science to infuse plant extracts and flower essences into professional and high performing hair care and styling products.

We also learnt lots of tips and techniques watching Jackie re-create the low side ponytail and a sleek half-upstyle that was all the rage at the recent runways (the trick is to use a rubber band, but instead of tieing with it, you secure one end of it to your hair with a bobby pin, then wrap the rubber band tightly around the pony tail,take a strand of hair and wrap it over the rubber band to hide it and secure the other end with another bobby pin).

We even had a mini makeover afterwards provided by the entire talented Oscar Oscar team. I managed to have Jackie worked the Cloud Nine styler on me to give my hair soft waves and I had some backcombing action at the back of the crown to create the Barbrarella big hair look.

Fast fact: did you know Cloud Nine is develope by the original makers of GHD, who then sold off the technology off and went to further develop and innovate with the Cloud Nine?

I learnt so much at the session that day and truly appreciated having the advice of a great hairstylist who can give you a great cut to make your hair work with you rather than against. If only Chadstone wasn’t so far out of the way for me, I’d be paying Jackie very regular visits.

Clinique Event
The end of November saw Clinique host its first Melbourne blogger event and some of the MBBE gang again got to catch up during the mid-week soiree over hors d'oeuvres, champagne and drinks and hear from the beautiful Alexis and Miranda gving us the low down on the Clinique story and sneak peeks of some upcoming releases (look out for growing additions in the Even Better product family line and a mascara exchange program next February).

(Be sure to hover over the pictures whilst the slide show plays if you are interested in reading the title or commentary of the photos)

With the business side of the event out of the way, we had a make up demonstration by the talented Courtney with IT Girl 2011 Melanie being the model of the evening to showcase a simple yet sophisticated look using products from the upcoming Black Honey collection.

We also had a skin consultation with the wonderful Clinique ladies and then continued the socialising where conversation topics moved from dodgy hair stylists to more BB creams and plastic discussions. The talk was so riveting and the hospitality so warm, we didn’t even realised time had flown and it was 10pm when we wrapped up. I was definitely trying to hide my worse-than-usual dark-circles and bleary eyes the next morning at work!

And Finally...
Being such a whirlwind month, I was glad to finally close November off. It had been hectic at work and having family from overseas visiting for 3 weeks and then going interstate for a wedding threw me completely off my regular routines.

Bring on the party season of December and the quieter family time that the festive season brings as we head towards the close of yet another year.

I wrap today's post up with one of my favourite photos taken whilst taking the relatives around the Great Ocean Road on our way to the Twelve Apostles. I just love the broody ominous-looking sky.

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