I am so excited I can finally share with you the fun opportunity I had been alluding to for the past few weeks! I got the chance to meet one of the sweetest and most beautiful women last Sunday! Sara Kosmyna, a beauty and brow expert, writer, and founder of Bombshell Beauty Studio, contacted me a few weeks ago about meeting up with her and doing a feature on the blog for her new beauty studio she has opened up in Marlboro, New Jersey.
Her studio space is located in the same building that houses a beautiful day spa. Sara offers, by appointment only, makeovers, brow styling, private parties, beauty lessons, and special events. Her little studio is absolutely gorgeous. From the relaxing and cozy lobby, down to her purple inspired royal studio. The atmosphere makes you feel like a princess, relaxed and at home in your own bedroom!
(The studio really felt like a girl's cozy bedroom. She even had purple rose petals scattered on the floor. I loved the purple, which was inspired by the chandelier artwork above. It has specks of purple throughout! Design inspiration can come from just about anywhere!)
Before I get into the make-over, I want to share the Q&A I gave to Sara. I asked her some questions about her new business as well as some beauty tips! She does a better job of explaining her beauty history than I can. Take it away Sara!
1) Hey Sara! Why don't you introduce yourself and tell us a little about what you do! Hi Strength and Sunshine readers! My name is Sara Kosmyna, and I’m a NJ based beauty writer, brow expert, and makeup artist with a degree in writing and a license in cosmetology. My love affair with beauty began early. Ever since I was a little girl being strolled around the beauty aisles in my mom’s shopping cart, I have been drawn to art and makeup. As a third generation beauty professional, I like to think that my flair for transforming comes from something I inherited from my Italian grandmother, aunts, and cousins who all worked in the field before me.
2) What was the motivation behind starting Bombshell Beauty Studio? I’ve always wanted to teach and transform. Ever since I was a little girl, I would draw photos of beautiful women with arched eyebrows, long lashes, high heels, and long nails. Over the years, my eyes have become trained to see where something is working and where it isn’t. Opening Bombshell Beauty Studio was an easy decision for me, but not one without A LOT of work. This past year was a hard one for me. I lost two of my aunts, who were both cosmetologists, to cancer and heart disease. During this time, both of my parents were also diagnosed with cancer. Most people associate chemotherapy with hair loss on the head, but I watched as my mom’s, and my aunt’s, brows and eyelashes dwindled down to wisps leaving their faces looking tired and less defined. Suddenly, something sparked inside of me, and I decided that I needed to help others going through this—especially those who could use a beauty boost and learn techniques for doing their own makeup. Bombshell Beauty Studio was created so they and everyone else could learn, look beautiful, and gain confidence no matter what they’re struggling with.
3) What are you hoping to achieve through your new business? I want to help women, young girls, and people battling hair loss (from cancer or other health conditions) learn how to not only look beautiful but feel beautiful from the inside out. While working with clients, we discuss more than just lipstick, mascara, and skincare. We talk about life. We share stories. We bond, and by the time my clients leave, we’ve connected on a much deeper, non superficial, level. I plan on hosting Ladies Nights where women can showcase their talents, meet likeminded individuals, and walk away learning something new.
4) The concept of beauty has gotten very twisted in our society. How do you maintain and encourage your clients to have a healthy relationship with beauty and body-image? Also how would you define beauty? It’s important to point out what’s beautiful in each individual—an infectious laugh, a passion for doing what they love, an ability to empathize with others. Beauty on the outside can be enhanced with makeup, which I love to do, but I think it’s the beauty on the inside we need to focus on equally. I define beauty as striking a balance between inner confidence, love of what you do, and having it radiant from inside out.
5) What are you top 3 beauty tips? My top 3 beauty tips are as follows: 1) Take care of your skin every day. (Cleanse, moisturize, protect it from the sun every day, year-round. Use products geared toward your skin type and its needs.) 2) Invest in a good coverage concealer to help brighten, camouflage, and enhance your skin. I like RMS Beauty Un-Cover Up, which is very natural and doesn’t contain any harmful ingredients. The entire line is a gem for those who are chemically-conscious, in my opinion. 3) Be gentle with your skin when applying products! The skin is delicate and requires a firm but gentle touch. Avoid rubbing, scrubbing, pulling, and tugging on the skin. This also means not using your fingers to manually extract blemishes.
6) What are 3 beauty products you absolutely can't live without? It’s hard to narrow it down to just three, but I’ll try! My go-to for sun protection is Devita Sunscreen; I swear by Makeup Forever HD liquid foundation for special occasions; and LOVE MAC lipsticks and lip liners.
7) Of course I have to ask, what is your #1 healthy-living tip? Healthy living is possible when you have a positive outlook on life. I try to keep a positive focus by listening to meditation CDs, self help books on audio, and uplifting music. I feel its best to let go of the things that make you feel bad, including habits, negative self talk, and people. All of these have helped put me on the track I was always meant to be on.
8) So finally, where can readers find you and set up an appointment? My studio is located within a full service Spa in Marlboro, New Jersey and I work by appointment only. You can schedule an appointment at the studio by calling (732) 618-4298 or by emailing me at BombshellBeautyStudio@gmail.com. **Readers interested in scheduling an appointment for a beauty lesson, brow shaping, or a basic makeup appointment can receive a 20% discount on one service when mentioning the Strength and Sunshine blog.** Thanks, and have a beautiful day, BOMBSHELLS!
Before Sara started the make-over she had me fill out a quick questionnaire. Just some basic info about me, my skin, allergies, health conditions, etc. I am not a big make-up wearer and usually just buy cheap drug-store stuff. I only wear a translucent powder on my face, a little blush, liquid eyeliner on my top lid, and pencil on my bottom, then just a light taupe eyeshadow. I wash my face with Aveeno Ultra-Calming Cleanser and Neutrogena Power-Clean Scrub. I have pretty sensitive skin and I guess just a combination/normal skin-type. Sara said my skin was beautiful (no huge pores, oil, etc.), but she did stress that I should be using a moisturizer to keep my skin youthful and healthy. I brought up how so many bloggers are big advocates of using coconut oil as a moisturizer and she said to totally give it a try. Although it can be pretty pricy, I love that it is a natural food product, completely safe for the skin and I think I will give that a try first.
Here is a before picture I took in the bathroom! We forgot to take the traditional before picture before we began, but this will do. I have no make-up on, just my natural face!
She started by just priming my face with witch hazel and then worked a light foundation and contour. She explained everything as she went, what she was using, and how she was using it. She was very gentle and it was/is so relaxing to have someone apply your make-up!
She asked me what color I wanted for my eyes. She had two huge palettes of beautiful warm neutrals, but I had no idea what to pick so I told her to surprise me and pick what she thought was best. She ended up picking a two colors ("Booty Call" and "Chopper") I would have never ever picked for myself, but it totally worked and I loved it! Then she went on to lining my eyes with a darker power, filling in my eyebrows with another light powder as well. (Before she started the make-over, she asked if I wanted my brows done and I had to tell her about my Trich and that I didn't want to mess with them. This was the first time I actually told someone in-person about my Trich and I ended up breaking down and crying. But Sara was so kind, gave me a hug, and told me how beautiful I was and that my eyebrows and lashes were gorgeous. She would have never known if I hadn't told her.) I was nervous when she put on mascara at the end (I don't wear it due to my Trich), but I knew I could handle it for one day; I wanted the full experience! Plus, I didn't want to touch my face and mess up all of her work anyway.
Then she applied some lip-liner ("Nude") and a light gloss ("Underage") to bring the look together. I loved how my lips looked the best! I never wear anything but vegan moisturizers and chapstick on my lips, but the colors she used looked fabulous! I always thought wearing color on my lips made my skin look so pale, but the color she chose with the combo of the other make-up did not wash me out.
And now the final product! I hadn't looked in the mirror the whole time (plus I was sitting with the mirror to my side, so I couldn't anyway), but I was so excited to see how I looked!
Perfection! This is my favorite picture!
Perfect warm and girly (but not too girly) Autumn colors. Sara is so talented!
I wish I would have had somewhere to go after the make-over on Sunday. I just went home and studied and worked on the blog. If only I could have gone to school or out on a hot date, haha! But we took so many pictures to remember the look and experience. Sara also write down all the products she used so I can look them up and buy them if I want. She also gave me some other make-up lines to look at and research. I may want to start actually caring more about what make-up I use and splurge a bit!
You may be wondering who was behind the camera this whole time snapping the pictures of the process. Well, that would be my beautiful mom! My mom had tons of questions about make-up and beauty and Sara gave her some really awesome tips and product suggestions to try. Thank you mom for driving over an hour away, taking wonderful pictures, and supporting all my blog events, when I know you could have been getting caught up on tons of work at home! Isn't she beautiful?
I am hoping to continue working with Sara and have her come on the blog as a guest-poster every once in awhile to give you all some beauty tips, tricks, advice, and information on the latest and greatest products and techniques! Thank you so much Sara for inviting me to your studio! You truly are talented and a wonderful women. I wish you the best of luck in your new business ventures! If any of you guys are a local Tri-State resident, I can't recommend Sara's work enough! She is so great and makes her clients feel loved and right at home. She gives you everything you want in a make-over experience!
So tell me:
Have you ever had a make-over?
What are some of your favorite brands and beauty products? I love these two organic lip balm brands, this awesome hand cream (the best, it really works, no lies! I stick with the fragrance free version though.), this liquid eyeliner, and this simple face powder. O, and I almost forgot! I love using baby oil! I just put it on in the shower and come out with the softest nicest feeling skin. So inexpensive and simple, but so effective especially for these coming dry Winter months!
**Disclaimer: Sara offered me a free make-over in return for a feature on the blog. Of course all opinions are my own and come from the heart!**