I LOVE a good launch party.
With Lilah B , I get simple yet sophisticated makeup, and my skin just looks pretty and polished.
I call it “The Malibu Minimalist” look. Details about this new line launch later today on the blog!
I LOVE a good launch party.
With Lilah B , I get simple yet sophisticated makeup, and my skin just looks pretty and polished.
I call it “The Malibu Minimalist” look. Details about this new line launch later today on the blog!
Yep. This is actually a win-win movement that changes both the lives of others, and yourself.
Actress, Sarah Jane Morris, shares her support of the #Dear15Me movement for teens everywhere – and the future of her kids, Emmett and Beau (pictured here)!
Blogger, Rachel Sarnoff of Mommy Greenest, shared her story on her blog, and it was beautiful!
Actress & Thick Dumpling Skin blogger, Lynn Chen, shared how she wished she had better spent her time in her teens, and it was deeply moving.
What have I learned in my life of struggles and strengths? To embrace your quirkiness. It can be the very thing that sets you apart.
BF Asks: Are you up for the Challenge? The #Dear15Me Challenge, that is. If so, post you pic and spread the word! Want to use a current picture, holding our #Dear15Me sign. Email me at Dawn@BeautyFrosting.com and we’ll send the printable pdf files your way!
It seems to be fate at work that my friendship with Ann started at Jan’s on Beverly, where she was my waitress 15 years ago, and ended here in America in a diner in North Hollywood, this past Saturday.
I met Ann when I was 22 and she was 53. I had just moved to LA that week. Ann says Buddhism saved her life in 1983 when she was in an abusive marriage and was about to commit suicide, and now she considers it her mission to spread the “magic” of Buddhism to everyone she meets so that they can share her joy.
Well I didn’t become a Buddhist today, as Ann had hoped, but I will say that she shared a chant with my mom and me 15 years ago that helps me fall asleep whenever I have a sleepless night, and calms me whenever I’m feeling restless or nervous. She also planted a huge seed of joy in my heart, that continues to grow.
I’m so grateful to have met her all those years ago, so thankful to have reconnected with her a few months ago, and am so sad for me (and happy for her) to see her go back to her native Thailand on Wednesday, where she will reunite with her husband, and retire, after working double shifts as a waitress for over 31 years.
I’m so proud that today I got to sit NEXT to Ann in a booth, and buy her and her friend Sunny lunch, instead of her bringing me my lunch. Full circle, indeed. The lesson here? Always be open. You never know the friends you will make in your day-to-day life, the lessons they will teach you, and the impact their spirits might have on you, so, keep your eyes, minds and hearts open. Always open.
Ann was one of my first friends in LA, and you know I don’t often believe in accidents. I’m a better person for knowing this angel we call Ann…better known in Thailand as Sarinya Chaimongkol.
p.s. I can’t wait to visit!
The McCoy’s MeCation Challenge: Hey, you! Yeah, YOU. This summer, I have an assigment for you. Go somewhere – anywhere alone – for at least 24 hours. Trust me. It’ll change your life in some miraculous little way. That’s what McCoy’s MeCations are all about.
With summer upon us, I felt that sharing my miraculous McCoy’s MeCation over this past New Years might be just the source inspiration for some of you out there. Memorial Day kicks off summer, filled with steamy weather and socializing galore, and if you’re anything like me, you’ve got to carve out time for some much-needed R&R and self-care.
That’s what took me to The Oaks at Ojai, back on December 31st this past winter.
My career is about as social as you can get, so when I think vacations and celebrations, I don’t think parties and clubs, I think of comfy accommodations, meaningful conversations, delicious food and drink…and there’s gotta be a pool.
I asked my friends if anyone felt like traveling, and unfortunately, no one could swing it. So, I decided to find a health spa, where I could truly detox and relax, and gear up for a productive – and healthy – 2015.
I realize that spending New Year’s Eve alone as a 30-something female might sound a little sad to some. But I assure you it wasn’t. I dare say it was my favorite New Year’s Eve to date. And I give 100% credit for that to The Oaks At Ojai. Like many of you, I had overindulged during the holidays, and found myself plotting to be my healthiest best in 2015. Then reiki master Kelsey Patel gave me some sage advice and one piece of direction for my New Years holiday, “Be sure you celebrate midnight on New Year’s Eve doing what you’d like to be doing the rest of 2015.”
The first thought for me? I want to be my healthiest best. There are plenty of parties and glasses of champagne to be toasted, but I can do that anytime, so for New Years, I would detox. I researched my options and the one spa that kept coming up with a host of accolades and a bevy of rave reviews was The Oaks at Ojai.
Well, The Oaks did not disappoint. With the pressures of Hollywood only an hour and a half away, you’d expect The Oaks at Ojai to be all about “fashionable fitness,” but you’d be wrong. This is a place where it’s more about feeling fit than sporting your LuluLemon, counting your fat cells or validating yourself on a scale. Here, there’s no pressure for anyone to be anything but your truest self. How many places can claim that?
As for the rates? They vary, but they are very reasonable. You can go solo and all in, and stay in the more luxe accommodation, the Double Courtyard Suite, like I did (for around $710/ night).
Or, you can come with friends, and/or be paired with a “roommate” in a standard twin room (for as little as $250/night). All of these rates are all-inclusive, including 3 meals and snacks, as well as all the fitness classes (15 to choose from – I ended up partaking in 11!!) you could want, so it’s actually a great deal, any way you look at it! They also have spa day passes (for $130 – $185) that are super reasonable.
As for the food? So healthy and SO delicious.
And my “weird” high-maintenance request, that The Oaks was kind enough to accommodate, at lunch on New Years:
I left 12 lbs lighter and I don’t just mean physically. My skin was soft and smooth, and my mind was relaxed and ready for the year ahead.
Overall McCoy’s MeCations Travel Takeaway? There are many highlights of The Oaks at Ojai: the spa services, the health benefits, the new friends, the comfy accommodations that make you feel like you’re in Santa Fe, and so much more. But the real reason it’s so special? The Cluff family and THE STAFF.
I’m not being a soft-soaper when I say that every single member of the staff at The Oaks makes you feel utterly pampered and cared for. They want to know who you are, what your goals are, and what they can do for you.They are kind. They are real. They are attentive. They are downright loving. Much of the staff is part of the Cluff family (mom, Sheila Cluff, is the founder & a fitness and health icon, herself), or teachers or therapists who have been there for more than a decade, out of sheer happiness and loyalty. Just the fact that they have such loyal, attentive staffers speaks volumes of the home-away-from-home that the Cluff family and The Oaks have created for both its guests and staff.
So, if you need a healthy escape from the hustle and bustle of everyday life – especially from this City of Angels that doesn’t always feel so angelic – well, have I got the place for you. Be sure to tell ’em I sent you. I’m their biggest cheerleader.
122 E. Ojai Avenue
Ojai, CA 93023
Editor’s Note: As per all my McCoy’s MeCations, this post was sponsored by the participating host hotel – in this case, The Oaks at Ojai (805.646.5573), 122 E. Ojai Avenue, Ojai, CA 93023. All accommodations, services, fare and beverages were provided by the host hotel, and their associates.
Well, I figure the best way to get y’all excited about No Kid Hungry’s Taste Of The Nation in Culver City (coming up on Sunday, June 7th) is to show you what a fun time I had at Taste of The Nation in Laguna Beach this past weekend at The Montage Laguna Beach.
Details are at the bottom on how you can buy your tickets to have your own foodie dreams come true, all while helping our nation’s kids get fed! But, for now, here’s my Taste of The Nation Laguna story.
Next up? The vegetarian portion of the evening. And it was surprisingly downright delicious to this Texas girl!
Then, it was time for the flavors of the sea with the plentiful ocean-fresh seafood options! After all, our view was all ocean, there at the beautiful Montage.
My 3 favorites of the evening? THESE GUYS.
And, lastly, the meat options!
I started out light with Alma’s Chef Ari Taymor’s Beef Tartare with Fermented Walnuts and Blackberries. It was a divine balance of savory, nutty and sweet!
The line was out of control for this one:
And, the eating & drinking didn’t end when the event did!
I stayed on for the special VIP reception, where I got to enjoy more of what the Montage chefs had to offer, got to meet the chefs, and eat s’mores!
The VIP reception eats, courtesy of The Montage:
Fried Mac & cheese balls
Grilled Cheese & Sweet Tomato Bisque
Foie Gras Cones
Late night antics in the photobooth with new friends:
So, NOW, it’s your chance. Tickets for the LA Taste of The Nation event at Media Park in Culver City are on sale now! General admission tickets are $110 and VIP tickets are $160. I say, go ahead and spend that extra $50 because it’s for my FAVORITE cause, and you get all that VIP access you’re gonna want. And talk about a romantic date!! Be sure to bring your sweetheart, because what’s better than eating, drinking and being with the one you adore?
I’ll see YOU there!
The short film is a first venture into the world of entertainment for Marriott. Shot in Paris, French Kiss follows a seemingly magical young romance between an American man (Tyler Ritter, The McCarthys and son of the late John Ritter) and a Parisian woman (French model and actress Margot Luciarte) exploring the city outside of the four walls of the hotel.
It seems that people often have a hard time grasping the idea of how influencers, like me, and advertising work. French Kiss is a good example of how subtle brand integration can work wonderfully, when orchestrated beautifully with a clear vision. Director John Gray created a work of art, with subtle pops and rare references to the Marriott Champs Élysées, without using a heavy hand.
Regardless of whether you approve of brand integration marrying with entertainment, it’s here , it’s always been here and it’s not going anywhere. We just don’t always recognize it when it’s skillfully done. And when it’s done well like this, it inspires, instigates, and gives us a life to aspire towards. The magical spell worked on me, alright. After putting off renewing my passport for the past year, I’m gonna get that done today. The first plane ticket I’m gonna book? Well, that would be Paris, of course.
So, grab the popcorn, watch the pretty picture, and be prepared to plan that trip for Paris you’re going to want afterwards.
Prom, fashion, beauty, and doing good for girls who do good all in one room???!!
Well, count me in.
I was proud to join TLC, part of the Discovery Communications family, when they joined forces with BCBGeneration to bring its SAY YES TO THE PROM initiative to the west coast for the first time on Wednesday, May 6.
The program, designed to build courage and self-confidence among young women, welcomed a select group of deserving high school girls from Los Angeles School of Global Studies and Manual Arts Senior High School to the BCBG Corporate Headquarters for a day of mentoring, prom dress shopping and makeovers. Joyce Azria, Creative Director for BCBGeneration, and Edwina Findley Dickerson, star of OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network’s IF LOVING YOU IS WRONG, also joined the fun – and confidence-boosting – festivities.
Monte Durham, fashion director and star of TLC’s SAY YES TO THE DRESS: ATLANTA, hosted the day’s events, where each girl was paired with a mentor who served as coach, personal shopper and style assistant throughout the day. I got to witness this magic, and it was truly something special that I will never forget.
Prom dreams – and so much more – were fulfilled as each of the girls had the opportunity to select from nearly 300 BCBGeneration dresses, specifically selected by Joyce Azria for the event.
After selecting their accessories, the girls’ looks were custom-outfitted with hair styles and makeovers courtesy of JCPenney salon experts, beauty guru Cris Ordaz of Discovery Familia’s GURUS DE BELLEZA, Ruby Makeup Academy and StyleSeat. For many, it was the dream-come-true of a lifetime.
Then? Why, it was time to show off the gorgeousness! The girls strutted their stuff, by showing their new prom-ready looks during a red carpet runway reveal show. They may have looked beautiful, but the inner joy these girls were radiating was just the most beautiful thing you could ever see.
In addition to the day’s style sessions, mentoring events and a red carpet finale, First Lady Michelle Obama addressed the students with a special video message.
The Los Angeles event marked the final stop on the 2015 SAY YES TO THE PROM tour, which this year more than doubled the impact of previous years by touching the lives of deserving girls from coast to coast. The tour kicked off in NYC on March 16 and continued with additional events in Denver, Washington, D.C. and Miami before making its way to Los Angeles.
It was time. Time for what? A MeCation, naturally. My spring has been the busiest yet, and I was in need of a little R&R.
My week is usually filled to the brim with activities and events, all in the name of work. But this McCoy’s MeCation with The Orlando Hotel on West 3rd Street in Los Angeles, was a little different. This was the FIRST time that a number of my girlfriends actually wrote me to say they were jealous. While I don’t like anyone feeling jealous of anything I’m doing, in this case, I could certainly understand. I felt utterly treated and pampered to the best of what LA has to offer, and all right down the street from me, on my favorite street!
We started out by checking into our rooms at The Orlando Hotel on West 3rd Street.
When I found out I would be staying in their Entertainers Suite – complete with an extra room for entertaining, and a large balcony, overlooking West 3rd Street, I knew I had found my home for the next two days.
I was in heaven.
But, as gorgeous as the room was, I couldn’t rest on my laurels, or on the luxurious linens, in this case.
No, we had a jam-packed agenda ahead of us, and we had places to go and people to see!
First up on our day of pampering?
Bedhead Pajamas, where they had champ and super comfy pjs, waiting for us.
We all loved the pajama party-meets-British-boho bedroom vibe of the store, so of course, we snapped a pic or two.
We shared one more toast outside in the beautiful Bedhead courtyard, but there was no time to waste.
Next, we were off to Murad to have relaxing hand massages, and face mapping to tell us how our skin was looking!
I was thrilled that my skin only read a low “13” on the damage scale, so with proper skincare, my skin is aging right on time.
We then headed right next door to get gorgeous blowouts at one of my favorite salons, Spoke And Weal.
Then, we headed back to The Orlando for dinner at The Churchill.
The food and handcrafted cocktails were delicious! And we actually got to taste EVERYTHING on this menu, as it was served family style.
But, my favorite part was when I asked everyone to go around the table, and say what they admire about each of our dinner dates. I love doing this with my girlfriends – new and old – as everyone leaves the table, feeling uplifted. I wish all women would do this!
After dinner, we headed upstairs and changed into our Bedhead pjs, where Rachael and I were so excited about my bathtub, that we hopped right in! You know. Totally normal.
And then, inspired by our pretty pjs, we opted for a pillow fight photo session.
As a bedtime treat, the sweet folks at Sweet E’s had left us some sweet nothings on our bedside tables. Sweet dreams, indeed.
Next? SLEEP. Contrary to what I’ve always thought, pampering can be exhausting.
The next morning, I kicked off the day with a little me-time meditation on my balcony.
Then, it was Clover Juice morning happy hour with my fellow editors and bloggers.
Followed by pool time, naturally.
It was one of my all-time favorite weekends. But it’s not just for me! If you’re feeling a little rundown – or just in need of a break – head to West 3rd Street, and stay at The Orlando for your own little mecation. All of this pampering is merely steps away. And trust me, you’ll be glad you did.
Editor’s Note: As per all my McCoy’s MeCations, this post was sponsored by the participating host hotel – in this case, The Orlando Hotel (8384 W. 3rd Street, Los Angeles CA 90048). All accommodations, services, fare and beverages were provided by the host hotel, and their associates.
I have looked at my mom, Clarice McCoy, with wonder like this all of my life. I remember being an itty bitty thing and just staring at her, as she rocked me to sleep, thinking how beautiful she was.
I used to drive her crazy by telling her all day long, “You are so beautiful.” She would literally ask me to stop because it was just too much. I was her own personal cheerleader.
My mom is my best friend…and she’s also my biggest critic. Sometimes this can be challenging, but it’s not always a bad thing.
My mom keeps me in check, and lets me know when I’m obsessing over something that isn’t important, or something over which I don’t have control. She doesn’t really understand what I do, and my life scares her, and becoming an adult for me has meant learning to be okay with that.
My favorite trait that I inherited from my mom? Her eye for beauty, and her need to make her home a loving, beautiful nest for herself and those she loves. Another one? She gets a little more awnry as she ages, but at the center, she always has the most loving heart, so much so that I’ve always felt like we kind of shared the same heart.
My mom worked full time plus, and yet I never felt like I didn’t have a full-time mom. I always tell new parents – and parents of teens- that the best parenting advice they could ever receive is from my mom. At age 5, I asked her what sex was, and she answered me with the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. My father was aghast. My mom defended herself by saying to my father, “If I don’t talk to her now, she won’t talk to me later.” She was right.
Having an open line of communication with my mom, quite frankly, kept me out of trouble. I trusted her to tell me truths, and she trusted me to tell her my truth, and thus, we’ve always had a truth-based relationship. Sometimes too truthful, I think she’d say.
On the other hand, I saw my friends, with more strict parents, smoking whenever they could, hiding alcohol in their windowseats, and sneaking out of the house with boys, just begging for mischief. I, on the other hand, shared my first glass of wine with my mom, and never smoked because she told me that if I wanted to smoke, we’d try one together. Um, no thank you.
So, she did a lot right. I think she forgets that when her children flounder, fall and fail.
She feels like our failures are hers. I only hope I can help her one day understand that our successes as adults are in thanks to her rearing, but our failures as adults are just that…ours. And, just looking at the friends I have who consider my mom their second mom, reminds me of how right she did it.
I still think my mom is the most beautiful woman on the planet, but now I realize that she is much more than that.
She is strong.
She is someone who overcomes.
Someone who sets goals and achieves them.
Someone who loves to a fault.
And someone whose love knows no limits.
I realize that as much as I always wanted to look like my mother, more importantly, I have the heart of my mother.
But getting her cheekbones didn’t hurt, either.
I love you the whole wide world and back again, Mom.
How did you feel at 15-years-old? And what do you wish you could tell yourself at 15 if you could go back now?
That’s what #Dear15Me is all about. Dawn McCoy (host, creator of BeautyFrosting, and lifestyle and life empowerment expert) has created a movement where we can share our stories and struggles of when we were 15-years-old – and share our hindsight vision – to encourage teens to love and accept themselves, just as they are right now at this very moment. *Helping teens tackle their teenage years with the confidence, grace, wisdom and ease we wish we’d had.*
So many of us say, “If I had known then, what I know now….”, so why don’t we tell teens while they’re still in it? Our goal is to start a viral movement that helps ease what can be a tough time in a teen’s life. Post a picture of yourself at 15 and your #Dear15Me message, and let teens know how you felt at 15, and what you would say to yourself if you had the chance now. Because you do. You have a chance now to help them get through this challenging time, with confidence, grace and ease. No picture of you at 15? No problem. Just post a pic of you now, holding the sign “Dear 15 Me…”and write your story and what you wish you could tell 15-year-old you in the caption.
Seeing the struggles that we went through then, how we got through them, and what we know now that we wish we had known then will inspire them to live their best lives now.
Listen. Being a teen was hard. I remember it so clearly: the insecurities, the doubts, the fickleness, the fear, the fights with friends, the crushes, trying to please your parents, trying to impress your teachers, all of it. HARD.
But, today’s teens have it even harder. They have all of that above, plus the added pressure of social media. If there had been social media when I was in high school, I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t have graduated, and I think my parents would agree with me on that.
I realized just how tough it is for teens these days on a recent trip to Little Rock, Arkansas. There, I talked to the mom of a 15-year-old daughter who told me about the pain she has to see her daughter go through daily when she compares herself to others on social media. Remember that party you didn’t get invited to in 9th grade? Well, imagine having to see pictures of it on Instagram the next day. Remember the guy you had a crush on who asked out your best friend? Imagine having to see pictures of them hand-in-hand on Facebook. SUPER HARD.
That next night, I drove to my Dad’s house in Hot Springs, Arkansas and saw a picture of me at 15 years old, hanging on his wall. I saw this gorgeous girl and was shocked, because that was not the girl that I remembered. The girl I remembered was chubby, with braces and filled with nervousness and insecurity. She was scared of being too much – and not enough – all at the same time.
I ended up writing a post about it, and was overwhelmed by the comments, Facebook messages, texts and emails that I received in response. My feelings of wishing I could go back and speak to 15-year-old-me really had struck a chord. Hundreds of women wrote to me, expressing that they too look back and wish they could tell their 15-year-old selves that they were perfect as is, and that everything was going to be okay. Sometimes, that’s all we need to hear: “You’re okay, you’re okay, you’re okay, you’re okay.”
So, I’ve decided to do something about it, and start a movement. It’s called the “Dear 15 Me Challenge,” or #Dear15Me for you hashtaggers out there. #Dear15Me is a movement where we can share our stories and struggles of when we were 15-years-old – and share our hindsight vision – to encourage teens to love and accept themselves, just as they are right now at this very moment. Helping teens tackle their teenage years with the confidence, grace, wisdom and ease we wish we’d had. Here are the details. I really hope you’ll be a part of it, and that we can help make the journey a little smoother for teens out there today.
#Dear15Me : To inspire teens and women and men, at every age, I encourage you to share what you would say to yourself at 15, having the hindsight, wisdom and experience that you do now. I urge you to 1) post a picture of yourself at 15, with a caption saying: “Dear 15 Me…” and follow it with 2) what you were feeling at that age, and most importantly, 3) what you wish you could tell yourself at 15. It’s that easy.
No picture readily available of you at 15? No problem. Any pic of you as a teen will do, or just post a pic of you now, holding the sign “Dear 15 Me…” and write your story and what you wish you could tell 15-year-old you in the caption.
While there’s no time machine to take us back to 15 to correct our thinking then, we hope our past experiences and heartfelt words will help inspire – and make the road a little easier – for teens today. Tag 5 of your friends and ask them to do the same. Together, we can make a difference in the confidence of today’s teens. And be sure to tag @Dear15Me and @BeautyFrosting so we can share your experiences with our social media channels.
“I wish you could see what you look like to me. Don’t you know you’re made of stars? You can do anything – dance, laugh and sing. You’re carried by love. All that you see will come to be. So, what will you do, beautiful you?” (Dawn McCoy)