Archive for the ‘etiquette’ Category

Keep These Items On Hand For Entertaining

In etiquette, how to, lifestyle on December 24, 2016 at 1:30 pm

It’s that time of year where entertaining is becoming more frequent and addition to considering where to go and what to wear, partaking of delicious food and drink is also top of everyone’s mind.  Instead of going out, many people will take on the task of being the host of the party and if that’s you, there are a few things to consider.  Whether you are hosting an impromptu gathering of friends “just stopping by” or having a more formal get together, there are some pantry staples that you want to keep on hand (or at least top of mind) to make entertaining a breeze.  Ahead are ideas for items you can pick up at your local market to make your get together fun, festive and delicious!

Wine, Champagne, Sparkling Water/Juice. In addition to always having water nearby, these particular beverages speak sophistication and can enhance the flavor of the items you serve your guests.

Popcorn.  Great for impromptu gatherings and easy to prepare, popcorn is the perfect snack without a ton of calories.  Sprinkle on a mixture of various seasonings to take your popcorn to the next level.  Give the following recepie a try:  a little olive oil, paprika, oregano, parsley, seasoned salt, chili powder and parmesean cheese.  Tortillas and salsa are also great options.

Crudite Platter.  Generally speaking, crudite platters usually consist of various vegetables.  Be creative and include various cheeses, meats,crackers/bread, fruit as well as hummus (or dip) and fruit spread.

Frozen Ravioli/Various Sauces.  Keeping these items on hand can make food prep a breeze.  Serve with salad and baguette.

Assorted Nuts and Chocolates.  Accessible at your local grocery store.  More variety and fun with a monthly subscription box or on

Ice Cream/Gellato.  Perfect to end the night.  Serve with coffee, berries, nuts, etc.

Candles/Flowers.  Perfect for the entryway and area where you are entertaining.

Serving Trays.  Serving trays make everything look more elegant.

Music Playlist.  Create ambiance with a continuous stream of great music.  This is easy to achieve with Pandora, Spotify and Apple Music.





Tips For Hosting Overight Guests

In etiquette, how to, lifestyle on December 23, 2016 at 1:30 pm

Usually there is nothing more exciting than having your favorite people visit you from out of town.  When you have guests coming to stay with you for the weekend, you want to make their visit as pleasurable as possible.  And while you don’t have to do a home makeover, you want to make sure you extend the same hospitality and grace that you would like to have extended to you.  With the following tips and some planning, you can ensure that you an your guests have a wonderful extended time together.

First things first – figure out where your guest is going to sleep.  If you have a spare room, this won’t be too much of an issue.  If you live in an apartment, chances are your guest will sleep on the couch or on an air mattress.  Wherever your guest is going to sleep, make sure the area is comfortable, that the area has curtains/blinds and that you have provided pillows, clean linen, a blanket, waste basket and a cleared shelf or table for their use.  You can also provide bedside emergency such as a box of tissue, pain killers and antacids just in case.

Double check dates and times of arrivals, departures as well as length of visit.  If you are picking your guest up from the airport (train/bus station), make sure you have the correct location.  Nothing is worse than being on time at the wrong place.  I know.  I’ve done that.

If you have a driveway and your guest is driving to your home, save your best parking spot for them.  If you live in the city where parking is often difficult to find, let your guests know where and when to park.

Explain the quirks of your place and show your guest where everything is.  You have lived in your place for some time so you know how everything works.  You know about that toilet handle you have to jiggle and the door you have to lift and pull in order to close.  Make sure you pass this information on to your guests to save them the agony and possible embarrassment of fumbling around your home.

Stock up on toiletries and create a landing space for your guests things in the bathroom.  Usually guests bring their own personal items but it is always nice to provide a nice basket filled with body wash, unscented body lotion, toothbrush as well as a towel, washcloth, loofah, etc.  Also, make sure there is enough toilet tissue, and keep a toilet brush and a plunger nearby.

Keep a loose schedule so your guests have time to breathe, especially when they first arrive.  If your guest is in town to visit you specifically, you can always plan for activities ahead of time by asking what your guest wants to do.  If your guest is in town for business,  discuss your schedules in advance and make sure they have access into and out of your place.

Make sure your guest has your wifi access, any access codes to get into and out of your building.  Also make sure they know how to work the heater/air conditioner, remote controls and provide an extra power strip so they can plug up their computer, phone, etc.

Plan meals ahead of time and make sure you have something for your guest to snack on when they arrive.  If you can, go out to dinner one of the days your guest is in town.  Also, you can do some crock pot meals so that you don’t have to spend all of your time cooking. In addition, stock your fridge and pantry with goodies such as fruit, cheese, veggies, cold cuts, condiments, bread, pasta salad, crackers and chips that will be easy for you and your guest to fix meals and snacks.  And don’t forget the wine (or sparkling soda), juice and water.

What has been your experience with hosting or being an overnight guest in someone’s home?






On The Phone Again…

In etiquette, lifestyle on June 16, 2016 at 12:00 pm

It’s that phone thing again…

Why does it seem as though people cannot get off the phone for even 30 seconds to transact business?   I’m speaking specifically about people who have their phone glued to their face while at a checkout counter.  You’ve seen it before, perhaps standing in line behind said perpetrator, maybe you are the cashier, or maybe you are the perpetrator.  Anyway, said perpetrator is checking out while having a loud conversation on the phone and the cashier has a barrage of questions their company demands they ask (rolling eyes in the back of head) and Talking Tiffany (or Tom) wont get their ass off the phone. Not even for 30 seconds, thereby holding up the line. And while said person is on the phone, you know they can never find their wallet or their keys or their kids or their supposed coupons for 10% off their purchase of $5.  Please.  Mass confusion.   My advice for you is to at least tell the person you are talking to please hold while you transact your business because doing so is just plain rude and disrespectful and I’m sure you would want people to respect you.

Lower Your Voice

In etiquette, how to, lifestyle on April 26, 2016 at 12:00 pm

So I’m on the train, listening to my music, enjoying my commute but suddenly finding it rather difficult to be at peace because a passenger insists on having a very loud conversation.  The conversation had no end in site and my ears began to bleed because I turned my music up to drown their voice out.

How many times have you been in a public place like the airport, doctor’s office or even a restaurant and have been forced to listen to someone’s loud telephone conversation?  Said offender just rambles on and on about whatever, disturbing the peace without any consideration for the people around them.

Or is it you? Are you the perpetrator. The one who just won’t at least lower their voice while in a public space.  Honestly no one cares about the sordid details of your life.

Now I’m not saying don’t talk on the phone and I won’t get into a long diatribe about social responsibility and manners (at least not now).  And I get it, some conversations are important and need to take place while you are out and about so consider the following when you are on the phone:

  • Be aware of your surroundings and lower your voice.
  • If you are using earbuds/earphones, you may not even realize how loud your voice is so take a bud out of one ear.
  • You may even try cupping your mouth as you speak.  I know, it’s kind of weird but it works.  I once sat next to a gentleman who was on the phone the entire commute and could barely hear him talk because he had cupped his mouth.  Now maybe he was talking about something top secret – who cares.  Point is a measure was taken so as not to really be heard by anyone except the person he was directly speaking to.
  • If possible, excuse yourself and go somewhere more private.
  • Tell the person you will call them back.

Hopefully these few tips will cause you to be more mindful when you take a phone call in public.  If you have loud people in your life, perhaps a sibling, cousin, best friend, enemy, make sure they read this :0)

Purse Essentials – What Every Woman Needs in Her Purse

In beauty, etiquette, lifestyle on March 4, 2014 at 10:30 am




These days, most women carry a purse of some sort everywhere they go.  And whether that purse is a small clutch or something rather suitcase like, there are many items that we carry such as a wallet (neatly organized, of course), keys, shades and a cell phone that we use to navigate through our day.  However, in addition to those items, there are several other essential items that every woman should keep in her purse at all times so that she will be prepared for just about anything that may come her way.

Tampons/pads/liners – At some point during the month, you know you are going to bleed and to be quite honest, Aunt Flo can show up unexpectedly – especially if you are traveling or under a great deal of stress.  At any rate, don’t be one of those women who get caught out there and always need to bum product off of someone.  In addition, instead of having all your lady business sloppily strewn about your purse, keep your items in a cute little zip up case (which can be found anywhere – drug stores, Sephora, Ulta).  If keeping up with your cycle is an issue, keep a small calendar to write everything down or better yet, download an app on your cell phone such as My Days which keep track of your cycle.

Baby Wipes-Whether you have small children or not, these come in handy for a multitude of reasons – just in case you spill something on your clothes or to freshen up during the day.

Altoids (or other breath mints) – This is self explanatory.  Unless you have some sort of medical condition that leaves you with a bout of hacking halitosis, you should always be mindful to pop a mint or two, especially after a meal.  I even like to take it a step further by keeping a travel sized toothbrush, toothpaste, mouthwash and some floss.  Altoids are also good to use after a big meal as they settle the stomach or if you suffer from a rare occasion of heartburn.

Pen/small notebook (or your cellphone) –  You never know if you need to take down information or you have an amazing idea that you want to remember.  And please don’t be that woman who is scrounging around in her purse looking for a pen. Keep it in a side pocket with your keys and phone.

Cold Hard Cash – We live in a world where we use debit(or credit) cards for everything.  Occasionally this form of payment will not be acceptable and an ATM may not be around.  Having said that, keep $20 on you so you don’t get caught out there without funds.  Hey, you also may find yourself on a bad date and you just need to get the hell on and sometimes using cash is just quicker and easier.

Snack – Snacks are fun but are also necessary to ward off low blood sugar and hangry-ness (angry hunger) when you are having a super busy day and don’t have time to get a meal.  Keep a small package of almonds, pretzels or a meal bar in your purse to keep you sane and focused.

Lotion – Self explanatory.  Ash is never acceptable.

Mace – Just in case you have to ward off a would be attacker.  Hopefully that is never the case.

Emergency Contact/ID – This is just in case you are in a situation where you cannot speak for yourself.  This information should include name, phone number and an emergency contact.

Pain Killers – No one wants to hear you walking around continuously complaining about a headache or cramps.  Select a pain killer that can treat a multitude of ills.  Put the medicine in a cute pill box if you don’t want to carry around the whole bottle.

Extra Underware – Just in case you are traveling and your luggage is lost or in case you get stranded overnight, it’s always a good idea to keep a pair of panties in your purse.

Lipstick/Lipgloss/Lip Balm – Ashy cracked lips are never acceptable.  And if you are wearing lipstick, take a few extra seconds to make sure it is lined and evenly applied.  Enough said.

Tissue – You may have to wipe something – like your nose.

Compact Mirror – Just so you can make sure everything is on point.

Nail File – Just in case you break a nail.

Hand Sanitizer or Paper Soap – Well hopefully you are washing your hands before  (Yes before.  Your hands are dirtier than you think)  and after you use the bathroom and before you eat – if you aren’t, that’s nasty so get it together.

Safety Sin/Sewing Kit – A miniature one of course that can be purchased from the drug store or an arts and craft store.  You just never know – a button may come off or a hem can come undone.

Lighter – This coming from a non-smoker is important.   You never know if you you will need to light candles on a birthday cake or you may get stranded out in the wild.  It is also great to use if you have spent some extra time in the bathroom to neutralize scents.

Again, in addition to this list of essentials (feel free to add more), use cute cosmetics bags to help organize your items.  It will help you save time looking for your items and you will appear more organized, classier and more pulled together.  Nothing is worse than having to dump out the entire contents of your purse to find something as simple as a pen.

Warm Weather Violations

In beauty, etiquette, fashion on March 15, 2012 at 10:36 am

So for the past couple of days we have been experiencing some really stunning, outrageously beautiful days in the DMV.  Not officially out of the winter season (which was a little milder than expected), it goes without saying that the warmth is more than welcome.  It also goes without saying that because the weather has been unseasonably warm, many unscrupulous individuals have had the audacity to walk out their homes wearing questionable attire and have committed various heinous beauty acts which are in extreme violation of what is sound and reasonable.  Following is a list of my top three pet peeves and if you fall into one of these categories, it’s ok.  Just be mindful and make some changes.

Crocadile feet.  Yes I said crocodile feet.  Jagged toe nails that haven’t seen a file, emory board or jack hammer in forever. Crusty (crust + rust = crusty) feet that haven’t seen a pumice stone or lotion in who knows how long.  Chipped toenail polish – is it on or off?  Make a decision.  Please care for yourself enough to care for your feet – go get yourself a pedicure or do one at home.

Ill fitting shoes.  Just in case you didn’t know, your shoes should actually fit.  Your toes should not hang off the front of your open toe shoe/sandal, looking like bird claws on a perch nor should your big heel hang off the back of your shoe like a car hanging off a cliff in a movie.  It is also not acceptable to wear shoes that you have to tip in (yes tip).  You have seen her before (or maybe it’s you).  She is wearing a great outfit and really nice shoes that she can’t walk gracefully in.  Instead she looks like she is taking shorter, stifled steps, perhaps like she is walking a tightrope because her feet are balled up like fists inside of a shoe that doesn’t fit.  Just because the shoe is cute doesn’t mean it will work for you.  Go shopping in the latter part of the day when your foot is a little bigger and you can get a more accurate fit for your foot.  Also when we are older we pretty much know what our shoe size is but our feet do change over time and it is a good idea to have someone measure your foot. This way you won’t have to be a tipper.

Kymaro Body Shaper

Ill fitting undergarments or lack thereof.  With warm weather people tend to wear more sheer fabrics.  Nothing wrong with that per se but please make sure you have (and actually wear) a slip and/or tank top with your outfits.  No one needs to see your private parts while you are picking up eggs at the grocery store.  And please, to the more – let’s just say voluptuous folk out there,  body shapers are your friend.

Film Set Tips

In etiquette, makeup on April 4, 2011 at 3:09 pm

Having the opportunity to work on film and television sets over the years, I have gained valuable skills and experiences that have helped me grow as an artist and as a business woman.  Being on location can bring about exciting and fulfilling days, as well as long days with unexpected twists and turns that test your patience and you long to hear the words “That’s a wrap”.  Having said that, here are some tips and best practices to help you along the way..

Do your prep work:

  • Understand the script.  If you are provided with a script, you should actually read it so that you understand the characters/settings and what is required of you to bring characters to life.
  • Utilize your call sheets.  Your call sheets are going to list times, dates, scenes, locations, cast and crew for each day of the shoot so you always know the who, what, when, why and where.  You will also know how to plan the looks and what to bring for that particular day.
  • Attend the pre-production meetings for your department.  You play a very important role in the production so it is important to take detailed notes and to ask questions.
  • Be sure to discuss the details of pay, contracts, etc prior to the shoot so that everyone is clear on what the compensation is and there wont be any surprises.

On Set:

  • Arrive early to set up and organize your work station.  A lot of time is wasted when your work station is haphazard.  You must position yourself to complete the looks in a timely manner, especially when you are responsible for doing makeup for multiple talent.
  • Understand that you are at work.  Your friends and family should not be on set.
  • Bring snacks just in case there is no craft services or if it will be a while before meals are served.
  • Dress comfortably and professionally and please be aware of your hygiene.  Also wear a watch even if you dont normally wear one so that you always are aware of the time.
  • Always be on standby for touch-ups/last looks.  The director should never have to look for you.
  • Watch the monitor to see what the talent looks like and dont be afraid to say that you need to touch up something before the camera starts rolling.  It is your job to make sure people look good.  That is your work on the screen that everyone will see.  Own it!!!
  • Since scenes are shot out of sequence and you may need to do the same look on the same person for several days in a row,  be sure to keep your notes and continuity charts in order and pay attention to detail.
  • Have a set bag for when you are on standby filled with the essentials (q-tips, translucent powder, lipstick, etc) to touch up in between shots.  This way you wont have to lug your entire kit around the set.
  • Dont leave set until you are told to.  Understand that times can run over and that you will be expected to continue working.
  • Understand that the language that makeup artists speak and what directors speak can be two different things.  Be patient in understanding exactly what is expected of you.
  • Be kind, remain flexible and no complaining.

Hope that helps

Toodles :0)

just wondering

In beauty, etiquette, fashion on May 23, 2010 at 6:16 am

i have been trying to figure out when it became acceptable to

  • wear skirts and dresses so short that your secret place is almost exposed.  i thought private parts were just that – private.  i was at work one day and i had to tell a client who was bending down exposing everything that she needed to stand up because she was offending everyone, including myself.  you know what she says to me? “oh that happens all the time.”  im thinking if it happens so much, maybe you should reconsider what you are wearing.
  • wear pants/jeans sagging, exposing color coordinated boxers.  even worse to walk in such a way while wearing your sagging jeans to hold them up.  i mean these fools have perfected that slow dip walk to prevent their pants from completely falling off.  come on.  this pant sagging trend started in prison because inmates were not allowed to wear belts with their prison uniforms because the belt would enable them to hang themselves, other inmates, or use as weapons.  why would anyone want to emulate such a thing?  and why should a law be passed to tell your foolish behind to keep your pants pulled up? oh and dont let me start on sagging skinny jeans!
  • to wear sunglasses and hats indoors.  there was a time (back when we had more manners) that when you entered a building you would take off your hat.  it was a sign of respect.  now not only is it hats it’s sunglasses as well.
  • to walk into a store/transact business while checking out on a cell phone
  • to not wear the proper undergarments under your clothing.  ladies come on.  you need to make sure you are wearing the right type of bra for your outfit and the size of your bust.  i know it can be hard for those that have fuller bust lines – you want to wear the cute little halter tops, strapless tops and whatever else is out there that isnt big bust friendly.  dont push you luck.  minimal cleavage is acceptable in certain settings (not while looking for a job but i will talk about that later) but your areola is showing.  thongs should not be seen peeking out of your pants, skirts, etc.  and when you bend down, even if it is at your knees, you need to ensure that you are not flashing everyone.  crack kills.  visible panty lines are never acceptable.  they make seamless panties, thongs, etc.  and do you remember slips?  they go under your skirts.  and for those of you with big thighs and large posteriors, you need to invest in some undergarments with some built in control like spanx.  you might think it’s attractive to have all your stuff jingling all over the place but actually it isnt.  and just because something comes in your size doesnt mean you should be wearing it. just thought i would throw that out there as well.

im just saying

protect yourself

In beauty, etiquette on October 2, 2009 at 6:58 am

so working at a company that is the “leading expertise in beauty” i see many things during the day.  i see ladies come in all the time with their dirty fingers rubbing in shadows and blushes, people with growths on their lips slathering on lip gloss with the wand that comes in the tube as well as applying lipstick directly from the tube without consideration and ladies trying on a myriad of mascaras ,again, with the wand that comes in the tube.  with that said, cleanliness and sanitization is major a concern.  i just want to share with you a few tips on how to protect yourself and others when you visit stores that have an open sell environment…

mascara:  use the disposable mascara wands that have been provided (use a different wand for each eye.  double dipping is a no no)

lip gloss:  if you are trying on stick gloss (you know the ones that you screw off the top and the wand is attached) use the disposable lip wands that are provided and again no double dipping).  if you are trying on a lip color that comes in a pot, first wipe off the top layer of uncertainty with tissue then take a lip wand to dip into the pot and apply the color.  if you using a lip gloss that comes in a tube, squeeze out a little of the product onto a tissue, then spray some alcohol on the tip of the tube and rewipe the tip, throw the tissue away and then use a disposable lip wand to apply the color.

lip sticks:  take a tissue to wipe off the layer of uncertainty then alcohol the lipstick and then wipe again

eye shadows:  use a tissue to wipe off the layer of uncertainty then take a disposable eye shadow applicator to apply your eyeshadow. and again do not double dip.

also when you go into these stores for makeovers, the artist should be sanitizing their hands, using brush cleaner for their brushes before they touch the product and your face, wiping off layers of uncertainty, wiping off the mouths of foundation bottles with alcohol so on and so forth.  and (gasp) if they ever blow on their brushes, product or you, run for the nearest exit because that is so gross!!!!!

i hope this tidbit of information helps to raise your level of awareness about issues of cleanliness.