Real Girl Beauty

For every girl who's imagined herself as Lucky Magazine's "Lucky Girl." Or who's conquered her addiction to the bitchier-than-thou forums. Or who reacts every day to her Daily Candy email with the same: "Who can afford that?" Here are some heartfelt health and beauty tips from one Real Girl to another.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Real Girl's Tiny Piece of Fashion Week: Spring 2007 RTW

In the next week or two, you'll see a Real Girl review for a product that was sent to me by Think PR. (Hint: It's a lippie! With a twist!) The people at Think PR? Are super nice. And they've been great to Real Girl! They invited her to a slew of Project Runwaytastic events, most of which she couldn't attend. Wah. But she did manage to sneak in one show and after party, and of course I've got to report all!

Real Girl and her friend Brendon got to the Anand Jon fashion show barely on time, at 4 PM. had been rescheduled for 5 PM, and so we were early enough to watch the final walkthrough, including last minute fittings and a glimpse of someone I totally recognized. Nnenna, from America's Next Top Model, Cycle 6! Real Girl very much wanted to say to Nnenna: "Standing in front of me now, you look like a model." Sometimes I wish I can be as ridiculous as I want to be in public.

I created a whole Flickr album with handy dandy labels and comments so you can enjoy the whole show with me. (Make sure to flip through the after party pics too! But more on that later...) The garments at Anand Jon seemed luxurious, sparkly, and statement-making. Although the clothes were not particuarly my own personal taste, the whole scene was a blast! The photograhers were all snap snap snapping on one end of the room. Digital cameras were popping up at every moment, and lo and behold, who should Real Girl see right before the show?

ONLY the nicest man on reality television: Project Runway and Parson's own Tim Gunn! He could not have been more willing to smile and meet new people or pose for pics, so after the show, when I cheerfully asked, "Tim Gunn! Would you mind posing for a picture for my beauty blog?" He happily responded, "Sure!" We had a brief chat about the Project Runway alumni who were showing all over Fashion Week, and he seemed genuinely interested in their success and good well being. Truly, Tim Gunn could not have been a nicer gent.

Plus? Taking a picture with me clearly put him in so much raptures, he had to close his eyes to enjoy it. Right?

Or maybe Tim was thinking (with Real Girl) of the gratuitous Hot Guy models who paraded down the runway earlier, much to the ladies' glee. I'll just let you look through the Flickr album for that one ;)

The after party for the show at PM was later on, with plenty of time for me to mosey home and change. I was in the mood for a "that girl in the white tank top" look, which--when you see the whole outfit--was cute enough. (Do the boots look familiar?) But when you just see the white tank top in the photographs? Eh, I could have done better. Thanks to my good friend Emily for being my Real Date!

The looks I enjoyed most during fashion week were short, mod or babydoll dresses in soft colors or delicious prints. Also, long gowns with beribboned empire waists. I've compiled a luscious little slide show of the items I saw that I'd most likely actually wear. (Note: When you see the hot pants? Yeah, I'd wear the top.) Some of these looks showed up better on the TV coverage, where you could see the flow of the materials. And some of my favorite looks didn't make the cut--because I couldn't wear them. Of course I've got a Flickr album of all the dresses I want to wear. Or you can just press play below!

My three favorite sites for viewing the Spring 2007 fashions all over the world are:,, and for New York's only, New York Magazine online.

But share your favorites! What are you dying for from Fashion Week? Or what styles are you just dying for at this moment? Anything you want at all to shout out, please do!
I remain your,
Real Girl

P.S. For the offical-like photos of the Anand Jon show, click here! xx

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

ANTM Premieres...and JOY oh JOY!

The Joy oh Joy part comes because the RGB Boutique is taking a lot longer to stock with products than I thought it would. But this is because I'm finding SO MANY great products to include with the ones I've written about in these pages. Like lip balms in every desireable flavor imagineable. Chocolate Mousse, Chocolate Hazelnut, Pumpkin Cheesecake, Brown Sugar & Cinnamon, Cream Filled Cake. And that's just the beginning of all the amazing flavors and other extraordinary products that will be available.

Um...I think Real Girl will be frequenting the Real Girl Beauty Boutique. Why did I think this was a good way to make money again?

The other thing happening this week? The premiere of America's Next Top Model on Wednesday 9/20!! Remember when I saw Tyra Banks? (I have gotten *so* better at Photoshop since then!)

I'll be going to an ANTM premiere party, for which my friend Liz and I have perfected the best ever America's Next Top Model drinking game. So that you, too, can enjoy the Tyrabration to its fullest, I'll share here! Make sure to print it out and enjoy with friends. Or, you know, by yourself. Lordy knows I will every Wednesday night!

Tyra says "Miss Jay": Drink.
Tyra mentions her mother: Drink.
Nigel ogles a teenager: Drink.
Contestant declares "I'm not here to make friends": 1 Drink. This is followed by "I'm here to win": 2 Drinks.
Tyra tells model wannabe that she has to "believe in herself": 1 Drink
Contestant cries about missing her boyfriend: Drink.
Guest spot by crazy Janice Dickenson: Chug.
A contestant stumbles on the runway: Drink.
Tyra displays how she can express SO MUCH with just her EYES: Chug.
Tyra talks with a British accent: Try not to hurl.
Models do a runway show or other posing while bored at home: drink
Someone says "fierce": drink
Someone says "step it up": drink
Tyra pulls up bangs and uses phrase "five-head": drink
Trya tells models about how hard she had it in her day: drink until she's done
Contestant overcomes non-ugly physical handicap: Drink
Tyra talks about the "hard work" it takes to be a model: Drink
Judges tell contestant to "remember her neck": Drink
Contestant is told she is "so pretty in person" but "I don't see that in this photo": Drink
Someone is accused of an eating disorder: Drink
Someone's told she's eating too much: Eat
Judges say: "...but standing in front of me now, you don't look like a model.": drink
Model stumbles in high heels because she's not used to them: drink
Models mispronounce obvious words/designers: drink for each one
Contestant is told she is the “shortest” and so must work “extra hard”: Drink.
Tyra French accents away for “Giles Bensimon”: Drink
Model makes up a word she thinks is actual English: Drink
Models scream like maniacs when they see Tyra: Drink
Tyra exclaims over anyone’s booty, including her own: Drink
Miss Jay rolls his eyes: Drink
Tyra instructs models that they have to “do it like this, see? Like this.” Drink.

Enjoy my lovelies! And add more in comments if you've got 'em!! My fashion show report--along with my favorites from Fashion Week--are coming this weekend! xx RG

Thursday, September 14, 2006

These Boots Were Made For Buying

Love. Exciting and new. Come aboard. We're expecting you. The Love Booooot. Soon she'll be making another run. The Love Boooooot. Priced well enough for everyone...

Here's where Real Girl makes one of her confessions. Don't get me wrong. I LOVE a gorgeous, expensive boot. I was salivating over a pair on the subway today, worn by a chic, rail thin glamour gal, and made of the most gorgeous slouchy butter black leather I've seen in ages. Yummm.

But the thing with my more expensive shoes is that when I wear them, I'm always aware that I've got on a fashion investment that could have been a big chunk of my monthly mortgage payment. And then I'm compelled to be super duper careful. I might take a taxi instead of the subway. I can't wear them to a bar lest someone's cocktail or (ack!) beer gets spilled on my precious tootsies. It's just so And so when I find a cute as hell, moderately priced shoe or boot that 's ALSO comfortable? I jump at the chance to buy it, no matter how unfancy the label is. And those turn out to be some of my favorite shoes. The ones I can dance in, wear to the club, wear to work, wear without terror of a freak rain storm. They're stress free.

This boot? Goes beyond "moderately priced." It's $36.99. May I repeat that? THIRTY SEVEN DOLLARS for a cute boot. I have never been so thrilled to buy budget footwear in my life.

Say hello to Target's Isaac Mizrahi Chiara boot in brown, black, stone, or (not my personal fave) olive. (By the way! These links will be part of the upcoming boutique--and so totally count for RGB royalties for all you supportive beauties!) (You can also click on the images below, and that takes you to a new page! Cool, no!?)

I sent pictures of the boots to my best friend and asked her how much she thought I paid for them. Here, I shall quote her email back to me: "$150? $300?" How good does it feel to email back: "THIRTY SEVEN DOLLARS!" I know. I'm beating a dead horse. But still. You know Real Girl likes a good value.

So what are you getting for your money? Faux suede. Great for Peta lovers, not so much for boot purists. I personally have no problem with the fabric, especially because it is so comfortable. None of that breaking in that you've got to do with leather. I wore my boots with nary a blister the first time around, and the toe is not so pointy as to be uncomfortable. If you're good in any boot with a normal-to-decent sized heel, you will most likely find these confortable--so key for a gal's feet these days.

As for the quality? I give it a rating of LMETIIBYKIN: Looks More Expensive Than It Is, But You'll Know It's Not. In other words, from afar, no one should know it's a cheapie.

As for matters of fit? My foot runs between 6 and 6.5, and I'm great in the 6.5, with room for socks. Here's a crucial note, too: If you only enjoy a fully erect (hee), structured, stiff tall boot, this is not the boot for you. I personally love a little slouch to my boot, so I'm thrilled that the material has give. If you've got slender legs, your boot will slouch. But that also means there's room for larger legs. I took pictures of me in the boot to demonstrate what I'll call the Slouch Effect (first pic). And while I'm at it, I'll throw in some other views of the Chiara on my Real Leg:

Remember, too, that because of use of flash, the brown looks a bit lighter here than its actual chocolate. But all in all? These bootsies have made Real Girl a happy camper. And by "camper," I mean of course "Someone who never camps but has cute cheap boots, so there."

OKAY girls, sharing time!! What are your favorite boots? Shoes? Brands? Stores? Cheap or pricey, it's time to talk footwear! Mmmm. Fooootwear.

With love from,
Real Girl

Monday, September 04, 2006

The bad news: Real Cat's sick. The good news: RGB Boutique arrives!

I have many babies. Real Girl Beauty is one of my babies. My novel is certainly one of my babies. But my babiest baby? The one who tugs my heartstrings every day and makes me love him like he's my child? That would be Real Cat. Here I am teaching him about lip gloss. And he's loving every moment of his tutorial. I've had Real Cat for 9 years, ever since he was a tiny 5-week old bundle of skittering joyful kitten energy.

First, the bad news. For the past couple weeks, Real Cat and I have been going through veterinary hell. Not veterinarian hell, mind you. We have arguably the best vet in NYC--she's caring, brilliant, warm, and I thank her for every minute of special treatment. But for about a week now, Real Cat's life has become a mess of vet bills, blood and urine tests, diet changes, and twice daily insulin shots. We learned Real Cat is diabetic.

There's a lot of extra work to do on my part, and some scary times right now as we try and work out the right dose of insulin. I'm convinced every minute that he'll go into hypoglycemic shock from too much insulin (his urine test results are off right now), but that's a different story.

Basically, I have hundreds of dollars of pet medical related costs behind me--and hundreds more in my future, with regular vet visits, blood tests, insulin costs, needle costs, special food costs, and God knows what else ahead.

But this is my baby. I love him more than most people can imagine. It's got to be done. This means Real Girl needs to find extra dough fast!

Is advertising on Real Girl Beauty out of the question? Well, no. But I'd rather avoid it if I can. I know it's all in my head, but somehow I feel it would disrupt the purity of this blog, which I've worked very hard on. Would I ever gear a review toward an advertiser or change a review because of advertising? No way. But I'm going to try a different route first.

Which brings me to the good news! Have you ever wished for a one-stop-shopping place where you can go to find only products recommended by Real Girl? Guess what? It's coming! With an online Real Girl Beauty boutique! Through, I'll be featuring easy-to-click links to only the best products out there. I'll also make sure you know where the corresponding review can be found on Real Girl Beauty so you can read up and make sure the available product is right for you.

When you purchase a product from the Real Girl Beauty boutique, I'll get a small commission. Since RGB began, I've had readers commenting that I send them to the stores. Now I hope you'll help support me and Real Cat by stopping first to the Real Girl Beauty boutique to see if you can find your desired product there. I promise my reviews will not change to suit the boutique. What's more? If it looks like the boutique is successful, that will be incentive for me to review more products. Will the quality and care that you expect from Real Girl's reviews change? Not if this girl can help it!

I wanted to wait until the boutique was ready to post this--but alas caring for the kitty has taken a lot of time and energy. Not to mention extra work taken on to pay the bills. I hope to have at least something available within a week! Times are tight in every way, but of course I still remain your,

Real Girl

P.S. Of course, purchasing the novel helps tons too! If you haven't already, I hope you'll trust that it's such a fun, laugh-out-loud, page-turning read that I truly believe you'll enjoy. And if you have bought the novel? Real Girl gives you her endless gratitude--for Real.