Great Gifts this Holiday Season

Great Gifts this Holiday SeasonWith the season of gift-giving fast approaching, it can be overwhelming trying to come up with gifts that everyone will appreciate. Worry no longer. Here are the best guidelines for gifts.

Gift Cards

Arguably the most priceless of all gifts, gift cards are the way to go when you don’t know what to get anyone but want to make sure they find something they like. The only research you’d have to do is figuring out what stores the receiver visits. For a special treat, find out places they’d like to visit but don’t and gift them a truly decadent present.

Happy Hobbies

For friends you know more about, buying a gift that compliments what they’re really into is a wonderful way to spark joy. Do they have a dog that they adore? Find them a doggie collar they might not otherwise buy themselves. Do they host wine-tasting parties? Get them a unique bottle opener that can also serve as a point of conversation.

Inspired Creativity

If you’re a handy person and often create stuff, crafted gifts are always a holiday favorite. The first step is to simply decide what it is you like to do then extrapolate. If you’re a chef, put together some special spices or dry meals in a jar. If you knit, make cute winter wear. Nothing is more special than a gift that clearly took time and effort to make.

Useful Usuals

Finally, if you find yourself at an absolute loss as to what to get people on your list this year, pick something useful. Everyone uses pens or pencils. Magnets or sticky notes or coffee mugs are all things people use on a daily basis. As a plus, you can always personalize these and use them as a marketing tool.

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Skin Care for Healthy, Glowing Skin for Winter

Skin Care for Healthy, Glowing Skin for WinterWinter comes with many exciting things, from holidays to cozy evenings in front of a fire, but what it doesn’t bring is fabulous skin. No matter where you live, the cold does nothing but wreak havoc on the pores with its harsh winds, low temperatures, and dry atmosphere. Don’t be the victim this year. Take charge and keep up your healthy, glowing skin.

Drink Water

Hot cocoa and eggnog are only a few of the decadent drinkable desserts that flavor the season but it also means we drink much less water. Unfortunately, this is no way to keep that radiant glow. Though you don’t have to cut those winter favorites, be sure to remain diligent when it comes to downing the only liquid that will keep the skin supple and hydrated.


Winter is notorious for being the driest season and nothing makes skin look blander than a lack of hydration. With water working from the inside to counter this, it’s up to you to provide exterior protection. Moisturizers, especially those with vitamin E, replenish the lipids, or fats, found in skin cells that help them hold healthy shapes. The better those microscopic bits look, the better you look overall.

Get Outdoors

You can certainly achieve a glow with a bronzer, but nothing looks better than a natural glow. Though it’s tempting to stay locked inside all day, remember to get outdoors for at least 30 minutes. This will promote circulation and increase your personal glow, something that can’t be bought in a store.

Oil Up

Before heading to bed, wash your face and then apply either almond or coconut oil in a thin layer on whatever amount of skin you want to keep supple. This oil locks in your natural moisture while providing you with a healthy shine.

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Building Your Brand

Building Your BrandWith social media dominating every market, the term “brand” is inescapable. It’s what your presence is. It’s what you need to set yourself apart from the crowd. It’s how you make yourself marketable and profitable. But how does one even go about building this seemingly amorphous concept?

What Is It?

A brand is how the world perceives your business. Sometimes it’s their perception of you when you are the brand, like Tyra Banks. Otherwise, it’s a company, like Amazon. It’s your look, it’s your style, and it’s your reputation.

How Do You Build It?

While the task of building a brand can seem Herculean, it’s important to remember that the easiest way to begin building one is to start. A lot of brand creation lies in the process of discovery and you can’t achieve that until you begin uncovering things in the field. That being said, here are some steps you can take to research where you can pick your starting point.

What’s your mission?

Why are you doing what you do? What are you hoping to achieve? Craft a mission statement for yourself and you’ll have crafted a cornerstone from which to build the brand. The clearer the statement, the easier you’ll be able to figure out what works for your brand and what doesn’t.

What’s your voice?

This aspect is often overlooked but should always be given a lot of consideration. How you communicate with the world, from the language you use to the hashtags, all work to build your voice. Though this may take some practice in terms of development, once you find this, you’ll have built the framework around your cornerstone.

What’s your pitch?

Finally, develop your pitch. In ten words or less, why should people care about your brand? Nail this and the only thing left you’ll need to truly make your brand shine is time and perseverance.

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Acting Audition Etiquette

Acting Audition EtiquetteAs an actor where personalities are a huge part of auditioning, etiquette becomes an extremely invaluable toolkit. It teaches you where to draw your line so that you don’t go too far and ruin your chances of landing a part.

Do Your Research

Read the play. Get to know the casting director. Study the production company. Then take this information and use it to craft your resume. Preparation in theater is an essential skill directors expect their actors to have. By doing this for the audition, they’ll see potential in you and respect for the craft.

Show Appreciation

Whether you’re called back for a role or not, always send a response to any email you receive. Didn’t get cast? Thank them for their time. Invited back for a second showing? Thank them and confirm the meeting. Appreciation goes a long way. It is a quick way to recognize that they didn’t have to go out of their way to contact you but they did. It also paints you in a positive light for a potential future audition.

Follow Directions

If you’re asked to arrive with two monologues and a piece of the play memorized, show up with those requests fulfilled. It might seem like common sense, but there are actors out there who believe they can simply show up to every audition and wing it. Nothing will make a casting director throw away your resume faster than purposely ignoring their simple requests.

Be Polite

As with most auditions, you’re going to be sitting in a room of other actors and actors are, if not anything else, very talkative people. However, talking all the time can really pull people out of their pre-audition routines. Assume that most actors in the room with you want to be left alone to focus and throw out nothing more than a polite “hello” before preparing yourself.

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Modeling Audition Etiquette

Modeling Audition EtiquetteAs a model, you will work with countless individuals. From makeup artists to photographers, nothing is more important for nailing repeat work than practicing proper etiquette both at shows and auditions. It communicates that you are respectful of everyone’s time and are a true professional.

Don’t Complain

Jobs get stressful. Deadlines make people easy to anger and frustration. Sometimes perfection takes time. While it can be easy to complain about how long makeup is taking or the length of time you had to stand as clothes were draped on your body, bite your tongue. You’re not the only one that feels inconvenience and pointing it out will only get others to associate negative reactions with you.

Be Flexible

As a model, it’s your job to bring the photographer’s or clothing designer’s vision to life. If they want you to start with your left foot instead of your right, do it. If they want to go through 50 different poses around one street lamp, hit every one better than the last. The easier you are to work with, the more you communicate your understanding of the jobs around you and what those require to achieve success. It’s a great way to show respect.

Arrive Prepared

Show up early with everything you need. This is a simple rule that will get you extremely far in the modeling world. Believe it or not, there are a staggering number of would-be models that either can’t or won’t do this, leading to countless missed opportunities. Be responsible and prove your reliability.

Never Backtalk

There will always be a temptation to backtalk those you aren’t fond of. No matter how much you want to or think you can trust someone, avoid this at all costs. The modeling industry is smaller than you think and word travels fast.

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How to Build Your Portfolio: Local Work

How to Build Your PortfolioWe all have to start somewhere. Whether you were born in a big city or out in the middle of nowhere, you can still begin amassing the things you need to slowly grow your career into something lucrative.

Just Start

Too many times people focus on what they need rather than where they need to start. The reality of starting anything is that you need very little. The hardest part is actually taking that first step by doing something. If you don’t take any action, buying all the stuff in the world will never bring you success.

So what if you don’t have everything you need for your modeling bag? So what if your acting resume is mostly blank? You’ll never fill those things up unless you get experience and you won’t get experience until you start.

Keep Going

Apply for everything. Your goal is not to nail a job in the exact niche you imagine yourself in, the goal is to start gaining experience you can then apply to future jobs. So long as the gigs you take offer experiences you can apply to better your chances of landing future gigs, take them and learn. Make connections with people who can refer you in the future. Put in more hours than anyone else. Work hard and you will see dividends.


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How Much Makeup is Right for an Audition?

How Much Makeup is Right for an AuditionApplied makeup amount suggestions for an audition varies greatly from person to person. Some cake it on imagining they’re already on stage and in full regalia. Others abhor the stuff and refuse to touch it unless they have to. The truth, luckily, lies somewhere tucked safely in the middle.

Make It Natural

The only rule you need to follow (assuming the audition isn’t explicitly asking for extreme makeup) is to use natural-looking amounts.


If you go too far, your face paint becomes the focus instead of your acting or modeling chops. If you don’t go far enough, your natural beauty isn’t put on display and your potential can be missed. By focusing on lighter makeup to enhance your best features, you bring out the best you for the audition. You’ll look healthy, you’ll look vibrant, and you’ll catch the attention of the directors in a positive way.

Make It Matte

But what does natural makeup look like? How do you even decide what to do?

For starters, keep your colors matte. Avoid gloss. Why? Without makeup, you’re only shiny when you sweat or you’re wet. Plus, shine draws attention toward it, focusing attention away from you as an entire package.

As for enhancing your natural beauty, pick your favorite facial feature. Is it your eyes? Your lips? Your cheekbones? Your chin? Whatever you decide, that is your main focus to build around. If your eyes are your selling point, practice subtle but strong eyeliner and eyeshadow methods. The key to natural-looking makeup is to make it appear as if you’re wearing nothing extra at all. That being said, don’t be afraid to experiment with extremes that you then slowly pull back. You’ll never know what too far is until you’ve crossed the line.

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Finding Your Signature Pose

Finding Your Signature PoseIn a career where beauty and uniformity are often indistinguishable, it becomes necessary to find the few features you can truly call your own, things that no one else can do as well as you. In modeling, this is known as the signature pose.

Practice, Practice, Practice

The signature pose isn’t something you wake up one morning doing. If your aim is to master a pose that people relate directly to you, you need to research and practice. How do other models or celebrities pose? Why does it work or not work? Is it attractive? Is it wacky? Beyond this, what is your ultimate goal with this look? Do you want it to be sexy or do you want it to be fun?

Now that you’ve narrowed down the options and the focus, you can start standing in front of that mirror and testing out poses you’ve found coupled with your own spin. You can even look through your own portfolio and see if there are angles or looks you think are really unique to you specifically and work from there.

Stick With It

Once settled on a style, start using it. Don’t go overboard, but make sure it becomes a prominent feature of your look. The more you do it, the more natural it will feel until you find yourself posing that specific way without giving it a second thought.

Be mindful, however. Listen to your close, respected peers if they have something to say. You can even ask them outright what they think of your look. What would they suggest? What do they like? What don’t they like? Take their opinions and work them in until there’s no denying that the pose you strike was yours first and everyone else is merely copying you.

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Body Confidence: How to Rock Your Body Shape

body confidenceConfidence can feel like one of those traits that you either have or you don’t, but this is false. Anyone can learn and gift themselves the power to own who and what they are, regardless of the opinions of others.

Think It. Be It.

If you want to be confident, you’ll need to practice. Stand tall. Hold your head up high. Walk with purpose. Simply acting more confident will train your brain to believe that you are confident. It won’t happen overnight, but if you keep at it, you’ll begin noticing changes in no time.

Honesty is the Best Policy

Once you have an innate sense of confidence, it’s time to take a good, hard look at yourself. What is your body shape? You could be anything, from a pear to a square, and all of these shapes are ideal because your shape is your own. No one looks like you and that gives you power over your potential.

With the shape determined, spend some time researching fashion for yourself. Should you wear loose or baggy shirts? How long should your shorts be? What’s the best cut of skirt? Many before you have already figured out what to wear and why, so don’t waste time stumbling around blindly. Use their knowledge to build a wardrobe that makes you feel like a superstar. The clothes make the man, after all.

Start Small

If you’re just now learning how to dress for your shape, don’t do too much at once. Buy a piece or two occasionally to slowly adapt to potentially extreme fashion changes. If you’ve been wearing baggy clothes your whole life but are suddenly switching to form-fitting, it’s going to take time to get used to how things feel, how they move, and the extra attention strangers will be complimenting you with.

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Beauty Trends

Beauty TrendsFall brings us fresh faces and fun follicles, allowing us to change our looks once more. Though runway designs slant toward the more extreme, there are still quite a few gems you can work into your ensemble to guarantee you are fashion-forward this fall.

Modest Makeup

All across the runways models appeared as if they had forgotten their makeup. Gone were heavy foundation, thick lipstick, and charcoal eyes in place of natural tones that appeared almost invisible. For this fall, find yourself a nice lip balm, a simple eyeliner, and calm concealer.

Electric Eyes

If virtually no makeup doesn’t appeal to you, rest assured that there are plenty of crazy options still on the market this season. One of them involves loud eyeliner applied in any shape or style that compliments your facial structure. While pink seems to be perfect, don’t shy away from the rest of the color wheel.

Bronze Beauty

A common color theme that emerged was that of shades of bronze. Be it lipstick, eye shadow, or even concealer, a golden glow is simply glamorous right now. Highlight one area of your face with a complementary hue or decorate everything with it, the choice is ultimately yours.

Glossy Glam

Slick that hair back with a product that leaves a subtle shine. Be sure to ditch the bangs, too. Length doesn’t matter too much but a side part kept in shape with a firm hold is where hair is headed for a while. Up or down, just be sure there are no loose strands.

Bold Blush

Finally, if you do crave a natural look over matted makeup but absolutely adore splashes of color, you can still add a bright blast of pigment to your cheekbones. Bright reds and pinks are absolutely magic when crafting a simple yet daring look.

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