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Lori Freese - Publisher Dish-Houston, Lifestyle Expert 







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Beauty is skin deep they say but honestly it is so much more! Here on the Beauty DISH we will share tips for great skin, hair, make-up, nails... you name it, we DISH on it!


Entries in beauty (11)


Your Skin's Miracle!

DISHIES are writing in asking for suggestions on natural ways to moisturize their skin and we have the best solution options!! First, Jojoba oil is a fantastic oil that you shouldn't live without. It's greatness isin it's molecules! They have a similar structure to our own skin and hair sebum. More so than any other oil! It doesn't remain oily to the touch and leaves behind silky, smooth, pretty skin!

Here are DISH-Houston.com's top 10 ways to use this awesome oil! 

1. Facial cleanser and moisturizer - The oil absorbs into skin quickly so you're not feeling greasy. It also cleanses clogged pores.  KEEP IN MIND: This is not an acne cure but a healthy diet is one of the most important factors for stopping acne from forming. Using jojoba oil is a way to fight existing acne, but not the solution to the problem. It's just a piece of the puzzle. 

2. Makeup remover - Jojoba is a wonderful makeup remover! It is so gentle and gets rid of everything; including stubborn products like eyeliner and mascara. It doesn't burn or sting like other makeup removers do (because of the chemicals). Just take a little on a cotton ball and watch it do it's magic. Then, BONUS, you get moisturized eye area and stay young looking longer!

3. Foot and hand softener - Applied just like lotion, use when you get out off the shower/bath as a moisturizer. For the feet, it's great to put on a pair of cozy socks straightaway to lock in the moisturizer. Then you can run around the house without worrying about oil getting on everything while it soaks in and does it's magic!

4. Massage oil - There are some really bad oils on the market that smell amazing but are absolutely useless in the massage room. The secondary problem to those products is fragrance is known to break the skin out, jojoba will not do that. PLUS, it smell delicious. Have fun! 

5. Lip conditioner - Use your fingers to apply the oil as if it were using a lip balm. Jojoba has incredible soothing properties and puts moisture back into dry lips.

6. Leave-in hair conditioner - Take a small amount in the palm of your hand and work it gently through the tips of your hair. This with help keep dry hair moisturized. It can also be smoothed over frizzies when hair is damp to combat flyaways. *BONUS NOTE: put a good amount in wet hair and massage the scalp. Put a towel on your hair and sit in the steam shower, bathtub or outside for a relaxing moment in the sun. When you wash your hair it will be softer than you've ever felt and your scalp will be healthier as well!

7. Aftershave - Use a tiny bit and pat (don't rub) it onto the freshly shaved area. This leaves the skin soft and helps prevent razor burn.

8. Cuticle oil - This oil helps recondition dry cuticles. Feel free to use it on the entire nail surface to prevent chipping and peeling which can be caused by dehydration, drastic outdoor temperatures, or hot water drying out the nails, either from daily hand washing or over showering. The outgrowth of hair and nails is actually dead cells, so they needed to be cared for to prevent future damage. Split or chipped nails cannot be mended, just like split ends on your hair. Just cut them off and care for them better next time.

9. For the bath - Add a few drops of oil to a bath. This moisturizes the skin leaving it feeling soft and smooth.

10. Excessive dry skin treatment - Perfect for alleviate eczema. Eczema is excessively over-dry skin, skin that needs major moisturizing and love. A little TLC, eating good foods, taking quicker warm showers (not long, hot ones), and a jojoba oil treatment after every shower and before going to bed at night, eczema can disappear.

Remember, everything in life plays a huge role in healthy skin! It all builds you up, or breaks you down. 
Feel free to email DISH your beauty questions! 


Ready for Volume? You can Pump it UP!!

By DISH Contributor Greg Decker, Azur West Creative Director

At Azur West, we are in L-O-V-E with Shu Uemura Art of Hair’s latest product. It’s called “Volume Maker” and it’s the first precision hair powder brush that gives instant root lift, texture and body. It also helps to refresh any blow-dry for long lasting hairstyles. Since it is an invisible powder, it works on all hair colors.

It comes out as a clear powder with no scent. It’s a sleekly packaged product in a very easy-to-use canister. The red and black design is ultra-cool, and it is the perfect size for your purse! The product gives your hair instant volume, just like its name suggests.

The product is also a fantastic dry shampoo; it works wonders on second (and even third!) day hair, absorbing oil on the scalp while making it feel cleaner.

Stop by the salon and let us demonstrate it for you! We know you will want one, and you’ll be the envy of all your friends.




Ombré Color at it's Best

by Jennifer Stepp, Senior Colorist, Azur West

Flipping through fashion magazines, you can’t help but notice that Ombré is a popular color trend.  Ombré is French, meaning to shade or graduate in tone. Hair stylists use Ombré to describe the hair that begins dark at the scalp and changes tone through the ends of the hair.

As we enter into Spring and move into the warmer Summer months, Ombré can provide you with that “just back from a beach vacation” look.  Much like the perfect hair color achieved by a younger person who spends their days playing in the sun, the hair farther away from the scalp will be lighter than that which is closer to the head. Since this effect is more natural, it also requires much less maintenance than other color techniques.  You can use Ombré to be as strong or as subtle as you wish.

You have probably seen Ombré primarily on blondes, made popular by celebrities such as Sarah Jessica Parker, Kristin Cavallari and Drew Barrymore. In the photo below is an example of a blonde Ombré I performed on our salon's client, AshLee. But for the more daring, Ombré can be used in a variety of colors. Just check out this beautiful Ombré featuring reds and pinks on our client, Michelle.   

Call us at Azur West at 713.400.2987 for a complimentary consultation for any of our popular color services. Whether you want to try Ombré or achieve a palette of rich tones by using the Balayage technique or traditional foils, we can find the perfect color for your hair.



Need Volume or Length? Think Extensions!

by Katie Sullivan, Stylist, Azur West

Want a quick, easy and beautiful way to add tons of beautiful volume to your head of hair? Looking to add instant length? Have you considered hair extensions?



I personally avoided hair extensions for a long time. And probably for the same reason you and many of our salon's clients had. The application process can be very damaging to your existing hair, and the hair quality was chemically over processed or unrealistic. My salon, Azur West, did tons of trials and research over several years and made a conscious decision to not offer this service until they found a solution that matched the luxury and high performance of the other services and products for which our salon is known. I am very happy to report that we have now found the perfect hair extensions!  Ron King Invisi-Tab hair extensions are a new brand on the market, with the very best in hair quality and application system. Don't believe me? Come by my salon and let me show you myself.

Austin, Texas-based hair guru Ron King is a national educator for hair color and cutting with several celebrity clients on his roster. He developed these extensions after sourcing a fantastic collection and resource for 100% European hair. The hair is virgin, unprocessed hair that most closely matches the majority of our clients' hair texture. It is incredibly soft and is heat-friendly for styling tools such as flat irons, blow dryers or curling rods. The hair can be styled, highlighted or colored just like your own hair.

Ron King was able to secure an exclusive arrangement, so this type of hair is hard to come by, and distribution is extremely limited. Because of this, he has hand selected just a few salons across the country to partner that will have access to this hair. I'm very excited that my salon, Azur West, was chosen to be the first (and only!) hair salon in Houston to feature these extensions.  

Other than the hair itself, the application process is revolutionary. Ron King worked with a friend in the medical industry to create the "Invisi-Tab" system, using medical grade adhesive that appears seamless, offers great flexibility and does not require excessive amounts of care. You won't even feel them in your head. Trust me, I wear them myself.

I personally have found clients who are growing their hair out love these extensions to help with that awkward “in between” stage as their hair is growing. Even better, I prefer to use them to add tons of body and volume for a gorgeous head of hair.  Even just adding as few as two to four extensions makes a big difference in the volume of your hair, and makes the cost affordable compared to other solutions on the market. I have even used the extensions to add highlights or lowlights to a client's current hair so they could avoid doing a chemical process to their own "real" hair. There are so many great ways to use these extensions.

Call Azur West at 713.400.2987 for a complimentary hair extensions consultation. I would love to show you how these extensions can make you look like the supermodel you deserve to be!


Balayage: The Hot Highlighting Trend

by Jennifer Stepp, Color Director, Azur West

Celebrities are wearing it. You can’t be a Victoria’s Secret model without it. And now, women in Houston are asking for it by name. What is it? Balayage! The Balayage (pronounced bah-lee-AHZGE) technique of highlighting hair has been around since the 1980's, but it went underground for quite awhile. But as the old saying goes, “what goes around comes around” and Balayage is back as strong as ever. 

Supermodel Gisele shows how Balayage Highlights Balayage is a hair coloring technique designed to create natural-looking highlights with a soft grow out. A French word meaning "to sweep", Balayage involves custom hand-painting the highlights to your hair by individually selecting each strand and then softly "sweeping" with a special hair color brush to give a perfectly natural sun-kissed look. The highlights are concentrated primarily on the mid-section and ends of the hair. However, unlike the Ombré technique, the color is also swept up to the roots in a soft, dissipated fashion. This creates a darker root area, but a very beautiful and natural grow out. Balayage is certainly an art form and takes a lot of practice. Unless you are with the right stylist, it can be a very difficult look to achieve.

I like to compare the Balayage look to the way a child has that natural, gorgeous blonde color they achieve so easily by playing in the sun. So many of my clients tell me they wish they could return to that "natural" blonde of their youth. Unfortunately, time takes its toll on us in many ways and hair color is one as it grows darker with age.  With Balayage, it looks like you spent the summer at the beach or as if you just came back from a really great vacation.  Also, Balayage clients won’t get noticeable and obvious roots (or "new growth" as we prefer to call it at Azur West!), meaning they get more wear out of their highlights investment. It’s a great alternative to regular foil highlights.

My fellow hair stylists at Azur West and I are experts at the Balayage techniques, and we are ready to consult with you to see if Balayage highlights are the right choice for the look you are trying to achieve. Want to experience Balayage for yourself? Call Azur West at 713.400.2987 for a complimentary hair color consultation with me or any of my fellow stylists to learn more!

(Remember to mention you are a reader of Dish Houston when booking any color, cutting or styling appointment at Azur West and receive a complimentary Shu Uemura Art of Hair treatment ceremony, a $45 value

A Healthy Scalp Leads to Healthy Hair

BY Tony Sanchez, Azur West Artistic Director

A healthy scalp is key to a beautiful head of hair. Maintaining the right balance of oils ensures the hair root can take hold and remain in place.  Nourishing the scalp through vitamins, exfoliating dead cells to unclog pores and increasing blood flow provides the optimal nutrition and conditions for hair growth. Your scalp is filled with capillaries, and unless the blood is delivering the right nutrients to the scalp (and the skin is not clogged to receive the good stuff), the root of the hair will die. Most of the time, thinning hair and hair loss can be corrected by balancing nutrition and exfoliation.

You need the right nutritional supplements and products designed to keep your scalp its healthiest, to reduce hair loss, increase texture and density of hair, and to avoid thinning hair.  The popular Kérastase line of products has developed specific blends of nutritional supplements designed to ensure your scalp and hair have the nourishment they need to take root, hold strong and grow beautifully. From the Densitive blend of nutrients for men or women experiencing thinning to the Age Premium vitamins created for women’s hair loss due to aging and hormonal changes, there is something perfect for everyone. Paired with the proper shampoo for scalp health, it helps to deliver a healthier head of hair.

Shu Uemura Art of Hair, another popular brand, used their research on healthy scalps to create Essential Drops. A dropper of carefully selected oils to help balance and maintain the health of the scalp while providing inner balance.  From the purifying and invigorating peppermint oil to the combination of lemon and catnip for a calming effect, enriched with ginger stimulierndem, embedded in the non-greasy oil of tamanu nut, rich in vitamin E and essential fatty acids. Plus, combined with the steam of your shower, it turns your daily routine into a luxurious spa-like experience.

At my salon, Azur West, we carry both of those product lines and a variety of nutrients and exfoliation options for every head of hair. Stop by to visit me and my fellow stylists! We would love to help you find the right products to balance your scalp and ensure a perfect environment to grow a healthy (and beautiful!) head of hair.



True Beauty Salon and Spa

Most Houstonians have heard of True Beauty Salon and Spas. There are two locations, one at Woodway and Voss and the other in Rice Village. What most folks don't know is that they are not affiliated with the national chain, they are locally owned! The same husband and wife team have owned True Beauty for 21 years! Of course, in the past they were affiliated with a national brand but just this year have gone out on their own. Isn't Houston so lucky to have such a great locally owned company? True Beauty offers a wide array of salon and spa services as well as top products such as Aveda, Eminence, Dermalogica, Pureology, Morrocan Oil, Phyto, and Bumble and Bumble.

Since taking full ownership Monique has really participated in giving back to the community! She participated in Fashion's Night Out with Carrie Ann Boutique in Uptown Park AND Rotary Skyline and Pepperdine Houston Chapter's Step Forward Day. Look for them later this year also participating as a sponsor for Tour de Pink and the cancer card!

There will be a lot more coming up about True Beauty here on DISH so keep checking back! We're looking forward to the holidays because we have new and unique gifts coming into the stores!

It's a beauty Christmas!


Caudalie is Hitting The Vine

For the past 15 years this amazing and innovative skin care line has been all natural...well before the trend because big. From the beginning, they formulated their products with a maximum of Natural ingredients in order to preserve the environment and the skin. But it gets better! In 2006, Caudalie made an innovative move by removing parabens from all its products. From that point on, their formulas have contained preservatives used by organic brands only!

The news gets even better! Caudalie Founder, Bertrand Thomas will be here in The Woodlands to meet and greet with YOU, my fair DISHIES!! Bertrand Thomas has asked DISH to invite YOU to meet, talk about and try their most innovative and best selling products!

Friday October 7th

1pm - 4pm

Sephora The Woodlands

1201 Lake Woodlands Drive, Suite 700 The Woodlands, TX 77380


You will get to meet Caudalie founder Bertrand Thomas and experience the latest breakthrough innovation from Caudalie, Vinexpert Regimen, an anti-ageing powerhouse regimen, packed with Resveratrol for exceptional immediate and long term clinical results. Experience one on one consultation with the founder and exclusive gifts with purchase.

GIFTS TOO??? Well you know that's DISH'S favorite thing in the world!

Put it in your schedule now and make an evening out of it since you'll be all the way up in the Woodlands...make reservations at America's or Hubble & Hudson! Have a beauty and a date!



Dr. Fred. Aguilar Explains the Botox Basics

In case you've ever wondered how much Botox it takes to get the look you are wanting...Here is the answer thanks to Houston's Premiere Plastic Surgeon Dr. Fred Aguilar.


Plastic Surgeon Approved!

Ok beauty Buffs! We are skeptical about EVERYTHING! Especially when someone tries to sell it to us in a living room...Believe! We are also always up for a challenge, like THISfor instance...Our challenge was to try Vegan Certified Skin Care line called Arbonne. We had heard all of the stories and success stories blah blah...of course, but does it work? Because let's be honest, that what it all boils down to anyway! RIGHT??

A little history here first, DISH has tried EVERYTHING except surgery to make our skin gorgeous! We Botox, we've lasered, we've used every product under the sun if it claimed to work no matter the cost...That being said.

ARBONNE WORKS!! We actually saw a difference in our skin OVER NIGHT! Needless to say we were convinced that maybe it was a fluke so we sent it to Momma DISH and a few friends. SAME THING! Amazing noticeable difference! WE ALL BOUGHT IT! And it continues to be an amazing product.

There are letters from Board Certified Plastic Surgeons praising Arbonne comared to the medical grade products they sell within their offices. One even switched over what she sold out of her office because Arbonne is better!

DISH uses the Re9 Advanced line; CLICK HERE to get yours! 

(PLUS: a little DISHIES told us that if you email us before you order that you can get 20% off your order!)


Cin's Skin Secrets!

Cin's Skin Secrets
Owner of Utopia MedSpa, Uptown Park
            Moisturizing your skin daily is a myth created by hungry retailers.  If you live in a humid climate, such as Houston, you should exfoliate your skin three times a week, and only moisturize the dry patches. That way your own beautiful moisture can shine through pores that can breathe.  This gives your skin a radiant glow.  Rather than use a highly marketed product found in a department or drug store, you should opt for the "natural, organic" ones.  These would be food-grade without chemicals or preservatives. I moisturize my skin with sweet almond oil, coconut oil, flax-seed, or grape-seed oil. I make sure my products have certified organic seals on them.
  I touch the dry areas such as the sides of my nose, my hands, the top of my eye-brows with a natural oil.  I exfoliate my skin three times a week in the shower with gentle circles from a natural bristle brush, or a mixture of 3 tbsp. of ground oatmeal with a tsp. of fresh grapefruit juice.  Rarely a day does not pass, when someone does not compliment my skin.  I tone it with a mixture of 8 parts spring water, 1 tsp. vanilla extract, and 1 tbsp. Bragg's apple cider vinegar.  It is also a good idea to avoid synthetic colors and fragrances added to products, these can be carcinogenic and lead to dizziness.
 Here are 5 synthetic cosmetic ingredients to avoid on hair and epidermal products.They are as follows:
1. Methyl, Propyl, Butyl and Ethyl Paraben-- these can be toxic and contribute to skin cancer as well as rashes.
2. Diethanolamine (DEA) and Triethanolamine (TEA).  These chemicals release formaldehyde.
3. Sodium Lauryl and Laureath Sulfate -- this is an inexpensive detergent that causes allergic reactions
4. Petrolatum-- it surface dries your skin and clogs the pores-- it is found in Johnson's Baby oil and Vaseline.
5. PVP/VA Copolymer-a petroleum-derived chemical used in hairsprays, inhaled particles can damage the lungs.
    We all need to do our part to have a safe, healthy body, mind, spirit, and environment.