My Thoughts on Plastic Surgery (yes, I’ve had it!)


What I looked like in high school vs. now. Lots of changes. Some happened naturally. Some I paid for.

If you follow my Flashback Friday series, you already know what a huge (literally) mistake my hair was in the 80’s. One of the reasons I keep my hair so short now is because it was so severely damaged from all the trauma I put it through over the years. Bleaching, perming teasing, and the full-on assault from hundreds of cans of Aqua Net. (Sorry ozone.)

When I recently stumbled upon my high school senior portrait, I was horrified. Back in the day, I’m sure I thought I looked great. Hell, I went out in public looking like this. That was the style. Everybody looks back on old photos of themselves and has that “What the hell was I thinking?” moment.

This made me wonder. Ten years from now, will I look back at my current Instagram feed and shudder in horror at my current hairstyle? My current outfits? My current face?

Looks change. Style changes. But I honestly think that the older you get, the more your looks and your style evolve. And sometimes, you want to speed up that evolution.

Which brings me to the subject of plastic surgery. Whenever anyone asks me if I had it, I give full disclosure. I’m all for it. As long as you are doing it to increase your own personal level of confidence and not to please someone else. And to be perfectly honest, when I first started getting plastic surgery, I wasn’t doing it for myself.


Why I Started Getting Plastic Surgery


Before I started Stylaphile, I was an actor. I moved to New York City in 2000 to pursue my acting career. And I found out pretty quickly how much the entertainment business is focused way more on the way you look than how talented you are. I got caught up in constantly trying to improve my looks in hopes that I would get that big break.

Me & my big mouth at 3 years old

So over the years, I had two nose jobs, a chin implant, and had my ears pinned (they used to stick out pretty far. Like Dumbo far). I improved my smile with Invisalign and porcelain veneers. I haven’t done anything to my lips, though. They’ve always been huge. Just check out the photo on the left of me at three years old.

I was happy with all the improvements I had made and they did make me more confident as an actor. But I would still get feedback from my auditions that was all over the place. She’s too attractive. She’s not attractive enough. She’s too short. She’s too tall. She’s too fat. She’s too skinny. And there was one audition where the casting director actually said, “We love you. You’re perfect. We want you for the part. But only if you speak Yiddish.” (I don’t.)

As much as I loved acting, I just got burnt out. Working a full time job while trying to find an acting job, while attending acting classes and doing showcases really started to wear on me. When I started writing Stylaphile, something changed. I realized how much I really liked to write. I loved the fact that I could write an article, put it out there, and get instant feedback and connection with an audience. This was the exact reason I loved being onstage. It was all about the connection with the audience. But now I was getting that connection instantly, on my own, without having to audition for anyone of have anyone “give” me the part.

So I quit acting to focus on Stylaphile. And I haven’t had any more plastic surgery. I do have Botox about twice a year, and I use a ton of anti-aging products. The great thing about being a fashion and beauty blogger is that I get sent all kinds of great new products to try out. I use these products to enhance the way I look now.  I truly believe that you should maintain your body and your face the same way you maintain your house. You live in it every day and you want it to look its best.

But now I’m doing all of this because I truly love writing about fashion and beauty and sharing it with you, my audience. Not because I’m hoping that someone will think I’m attractive enough to give me my big break. I created my own big break when I started Stylaphile. And now I love what I’m doing.

And I love you guys for reading.


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How to Do a Louboutin “Red Bottom” Manicure


Every fashionista – including myself – is obsessed with filling their shoe closet with Christian Louboutins. Having a pair of those iconic red bottom shoes is right up there with buying your first Chanel bag. But let’s face it. They’re ridiculously expensive. (Both the Louboutins and the Chanel bag.)

So while we may not all be able to afford to walk around sporting red soles, we can certainly get the look on our nails with this easy DIY red-bottom manicure.

Here’s how to do it.


Step 1: Get the right nail length.


d173ab31-531e-4d05-ac85-a07a0162cab6_1.6526f0c08d44ff1dea8febf590291c94Because you need to paint the underside of your nails, this look really only works on longer nail lengths.

If your nails are short, consider using pop-on nails that you can paint over or do what I did and purchase the Kiss Complete Salon Acrylic Kit. It comes with various sizes of nail tips and it’s actually pretty easy to do your own acrylic nails at home. (Take the money you save from having it done at the salon and put it into your “Red Bottom Shoe Fund.”)

This manicure also looks best on round, somewhat pointy nails, so make sure you file your nails into the appropriate shape.



Step 2: Paint the underside of your nails red.



Any bright red nail polish color will do. I used Nails Inc Gel Effect polish in St. James.

Use a very light touch when painting the underside because you don’t want it to pool up under your nail.

You may even want to use a different type of brush, such as an eyeliner or eyeshadow brush with a finer tip for better precision.





Step 3: Apply two very light coats of black nail polish.


Unknown-1I chose Essie’s Licorice nail polish for this step.

Start with a base coat of clear nail polish before applying the black color so you don’t stain your nails. Then apply a very light coat of black polish and let it dry. Apply a second coat and give that one plenty of time to dry as well.

The key to making this manicure look perfect is patience. You have to let each coat dry completely before applying the next step. I waited an hour before moving on to the matte topcoat.



Step 4: Add a matte top coat.


Unknown-2The final step is applying the matte top coat. I love Sally Hansen’s Big Matte Top Coat for this look.

It is very important to make sure you cover the whole entire nail surface with the topcoat. Otherwise, you’ll get patches of shine that will ruin the overall effect. And you don’t want to apply more than one coat of the matte polish because it will look too thick.

You’ll also want to apply the matte coat to the underside of your nails, so that the matte red will match nicely with the matte black.HorizontalSpacerInsert

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How to Get the Perfect Pout


I think I may have finally created my perfect pout. A pout that stays put, thanks to Maybelline’s Super Stay Lip Color.

I am always searching for the perfect nude-look lipstick that matches my lips and complements my skin tone, which is usually fair except for when I have a fake tan, like now.

Last week I was in the drug store and picked up a Maybelline Super Stay Lip Color in Unlimited Raisin. I chose this color because it looked to be a close match to my natural lip color.

When I got home and tried it out, I really loved the color, but it was a bit too dark when I did a full lip application.

I went back to the store and purchased a lighter shade called Continuous Coral to use in conjunction with Unlimited Raisin. And I couldn’t be happier with the combination.

Here’s a step-by-step guide as to how I used the two shades to create this look.

1. Start With an Outline

To achieve this look, I start by lining my lips with the darker shade. I use a tiny, tiny amount of the color on the brush because I don’t want too harsh of a line. Then I use my finger to gently pat and pull the color down to the center of my lip.

2. Highlight & Blend

After the first coat dries on my lips, I do a second coat in the middle of my mouth with the lighter shade.  Using a lip brush, I blend the two shades together. I let this second combination coat dry on my lips for a couple of minutes.

3. Balm & Blot

Next I add the conditioning balm which is on the other end of the lipstick tube. Since the balm makes my lips very shiny, I finish off by blotting with a tissue.

Voila! Perfect pout. And it will stay perfect for 24 hours. I’m in total lip love.HorizontalSpacerInsert


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