Monday, April 6, 2015

The Makeup Show LA 2015 Recap: Brand Coverage

Press Pass Affiliate Links

I was lucky enough to receive an invitation to The Makeup Show LA 2015 to cover some of the brands and education at the show. I'm happy to talk about some of the items I saw that we may not be able to try out in person. Check out my photos and my thoughts on some of the brands!

the makeup show la 2015 (19 of 33)

Friday, April 3, 2015

Interested in Barre? A Comparison of Five Different Barre Classes/Studios

Press Sample

I know, I don't usually talk about anything fitness related on the blog. After developing an interest in barre classes, I thought it would be handy for anyone looking to start taking barre classes to see what some of the differences are. I had the opportunity to try out barre after the good people at Classpass gave me a free month to try out. Being a former dancer and someone who doesn't like gyms, I wholeheartedly lapped up the opportunity to do so. Like I said, if you're interested in trying out barre but don't know where to start, I hope this post is useful to you!

Pop Physique (their website is not safe for work FYI)

Pop Physique was the first barre class I tried and it's because I had heard Bren mention going to their classes over winter. I was very pleased with their workout and the overall setup of their studio. I went to their Seal Beach location and I highly recommend Lala or Ashley if you want to try the classes out.

pop physique logo
  • The Seal Beach location provided water (none of the other classes did as far as I know)
  • During the classes I took, the instructors made a point to learn names and provided personalized encouragement (a small touch)
  • The workout isn't as cardio-based as the other classes so you don't get as sweaty
  • There's an even distribution of exercises for your arms, abs, glutes, and overall body
  • They incorporate use of weights during the arm workout
  • They provide all workout materials including mats and weights
  • Sanitizing sprays are situated next to the equipment for easy cleaning
  • The workout isn't always the same, it'll differ slightly depending on your instructor.
  • The instructors are quick to provide modifications for each exercise so you don't feel singled out if you have to make changes.
  • Lockers aren't provided but cubbies are provided in a room adjoining the workout area
  • If you're looking for an intense cardio workout, this isn't it.
  • Not a lot of ballet terminology incorporated in the workout.
My Thoughts: I thoroughly enjoyed Pop Physique. This is the class I choose if I don't want to get an intense cardio sweating workout. All the instructors have been so nice and they're all eagle-eyed. They are quick to provide indirect instructions to allow you to self-monitor and adjust your form before they do it for you and they provide modifications as they're instructing you on each exercise. Pop Physique says you can do their workout every day and that's true in my opinion. 

Pure Barre

Pure Barre was the next studio I tried out. I was also pleased with their location in Huntington Beach and with the exercise I got.

pure barre

  • The class emphasizes the "tuck" which is tucking your tailbone under during your workout. All barre classes encourage this form but Pure Barre heavily uses the term throughout the class
  • As a result, the class works out the lower body heavily though you do incorporate weights for arm workout
  • They do provide equipment for the workout 
  • There's cardio incorporated so you will sweat in this class but not as much as Cardio Barre and Xtend Barre (which I'll talk about below)
  • They provide complementary towels to use
  • Sanitizing sprays are situated next to the equipment for easy cleaning
  • The workout isn't always the same, it'll differ slightly depending on your instructor.

  • They don't provide water
  • Lockers aren't provided but cubbies are provided in a room adjoining the workout area
  • When the classes are smaller, the instructors do try to give personalized encouragement.
  • Not a lot of ballet terminology incorporated.
My Thoughts: Pure Barre is the class I recommend if you're looking to work out your lower body. Although they do incorporate an upper body workout, they're very much into working your abs, glutes, and legs. There's cardio incorporated so you will burn calories and get a decent sweat. The instructors were also nice and when the classes are smaller, the instructors try to provide personalized encouragement. When the classes are larger, they're more hands-off.

Cardio Barre

I tried out Cardio Barre next in Costa Mesa. Considering the name, I wasn't surprised to get a sweat building workout.

cardio barre logo

  • As the name of the class says, it's a cardio workout and you will sweat in this class
  • It's a great all-over workout for your arms, legs, glutes, and abs
  • Most of the workout is done at the barre with some on the floor for abs and glutes.
  • They provide you with weights to use
  • The workout incorporates some ballet movements and terminology

  • I highly suggest taking their Intro class to learn some of the movements used in class. You may get corrected a lot in the Beginner class if you don't take the intro class.
  • The workout is similar across instructors and is a little cookie-cutter compared to other classes
  • They don't provide you with water as far as I know.
  • They don't tend to provide personalized encouragement, even when the class size is smaller.
  • They don't provide you with a mat so bring a beach towel/mat or risk laying on the carpet.
My Thoughts: Cardio Barre is good if you're more experienced with barre or if you want to sweat but it isn't my first choice for a newbie. I highly suggest taking their Intro class to learn the form, even if you may be familiar with barre. Personally, if I'm paying for a class (especially at $17 a pop for the single classes), I think they should provide mats for you to use and it seems a little cheap of them not to in my opinion. I also felt like the workout was a little cookie-cutter/repetitive.

Xtend Barre

The next I tried out was Xtend Barre in Seal Beach. I had heard great things about Xtend Barre and how it utilized ballet-based movements so I was excited to try it.
xtend barre logo
  • This workout incorporates the most ballet movements and terminology
  • This workout will make you sweat
  • The place provides mats, balls, and bands to use
  • Sanitizing sprays are situated next to the equipment for easy cleaning
  • The workout is great for former dancers due to the structure of the program
  • There's a good mix of cardio with a workout for your entire body (including abs)
  • They incorporate use of weights during the arm workout
  • There's also a good mix of work at the barre and on the floor
  • They don't tend to provide personalized encouragement
  • They don't provide water as far as I know
  • Lockers aren't provided but cubbies are provided in the same room
  • Specific to the Seal Beach location: parking sucks because it's Downtown and the closest lot is a metered one.
My Thoughts: Xtend Barre is the workout I would choose when I want a more ballet-based workout. I think a lot of studios forget that barre should incorporate some traditional ballet terminology and movements and not just use the barre as a means of support. Hearing words like sous sous during a workout reminds me that Xtend hasn't forgotten about the ballet. I highly recommend this for former dancers and also anyone who wants to get a good cardio-based workout. If you're between Cardio Barre and Xtend Barre, pick Xtend (because you won't have to deal with bringing a towel as your mat!)

The Bar Method

The Bar Method was the last barre class I took before my Classpass ended. 
the bar method logo
  • There's a moderate level of sweating
  • The studio has both showers (unlike other places) and lockers
  • The overall studio was very clean
  • They incorporate weights during the arm workout
  • They provide mats, weights, and bands to use in the studio
  • They incorporate an overall body workout but there is lots of lower body and leg work
  • They were able to provide personalized encouragement
  • I'm a little concerned about the fact that we were able to put equipment back without cleaning. Maybe they clean them afterwards but I prefer cleaning equipment myself.
My Thoughts: Fair warning, I ended up pulling both of my calves after the workout and was unable to straighten my legs for two days. This was incredibly surprising since I had been doing barre for the month without getting such a focal injury. I also had taken a barre class earlier that week with no injury. I won't be going back as a result. 

Even if it wasn't for that, I was a little weirded out that the students were able to put the equipment back before cleaning it. Like I said, the overall studio was very neat so it doesn't mean that they're not being cleaned but I highly prefer cleaning the equipment right after I use it so I can guarantee it won't be dirty.

I liked the amenities they had at the location such as the lockers and the showers but the injury I got just gives me bad memories plus the fact that I couldn't clean my own equipment afterwards.

OVERALL: Here are my recommendations-

Recommended Barre Class for Former Dancers: Xtend Barre
Recommended Barre Class for a Total Body Workout: Pop Physique and Xtend Barre
Recommended Barre Class for Lower Body Workout: Pure Barre
Recommended Barre Class for Working Up A Sweat: Cardio Barre and Xtend Barre
Recommended Barre Class for Newbies to Barre: Pop Physique
Recommended Barre Class for Veterans to Barre: Pure Barre, Xtend Barre

I hope you find this post useful. Are you into barre? Are there any classes you think I might like?

Monday, March 23, 2015

The Makeup Show LA: Brands, Education, and Products to Look Out For

So The Makeup Show LA is this weekend and I wanted to mention some of the education, brands, and products at the show. I plan to attend on Sunday all day to cover the event and see some of the education available. Although I won't be able to make it on Saturday for sure, I'll still mention some of the talks worth seeing (though all of them are!)

For more information, check out the website!

the makeup show la 2015

-Education Highlights-
Keynote Forum: Ellis Faas on "Signature Style" at 1:30-3:30
Main Floor Seminar: Hidden Money in Makeup - James Vincent and Danessa Myricks at 9:45-10:30
Main Floor Seminar: Cheek Technique: Pop and Contour using Dual Intensity Blush - Cindy Rodriguez for NARS Cosmetics at 11:15-12:00.
Main Floor Seminar: Art of Brows - Eugenia Weston for Senna Cosmetics at 4:00-4:45

Keynote Forum: Ruby Polanco and Panel on "Branding and Building a Career at 10:00-11:30.
Main Floor Seminar: Uncovering Flawless Skin - Jessie Powers for MAKE UP FOR EVER at 9:45-10:30 
Main Floor Seminar: Beauty & The Beast: Versatility in all Aspects of Makeup - Trason Fernandes for Bdellium Tools at 1:30-2:15 
Main Floor Seminar: Beauty Business for Entrepreneurs - Erik Kaiser for Glamcor at 4:00-4:45 


Beautylish - They will have Rae Morris Brushes and Bioderma Sensibo H20, need I say more?

GlamcorTec - Lighting is never to be overlooked when doing your makeup and Glamcor offers professional and consumer lighting options. They're a bit expensive but are worth the investment!

Kat Von D Beauty - Kat Von D is making their debut at The Makeup Show. Although I don't currently own anything from the brand, I know that their Everlasting Liquid Lipsticks get so much love and I hope they'll be featuring some of the new metallic Liquid Lipsticks that I saw on their Instagram!

Make Up For Ever - Make Up For Ever recently came out with their Step 1 Skin Equalizer primers, a range of primers targeted for specific purposes. In the age of multitasking products, the Skin Equalizer Primers take a more specific approach; five formulas correct texture and five correct tone. Each serves a different purpose and can be mixed together. 

Mario Badescu - I love their skincare and love that they're catering to makeup artists since skincare prep is huge. I think many makeup artists and professionals will appreciate their presence at the show. I'm personally a fan of their Drying Cream for blemishes.

MustaeV - Mustaev is a Korean makeup brand making their Makeup Show debut. Their presence at the show is especially interesting since the American makeup market has been embracing Asian (especially Korean) innovations in their products so I'm looking forward to see what they have to offer for the pros at the show. 

NARS Cosmetics - Between their launches of the Audacious Lipsticks, Dual Intensity Blushes, and Luminous Weightless Foundation, my wallet is sad. I already have plans to get two of their Audacious Lipsticks and the Luminous Weightless Foundation (if I can find a color match!).

NYX Cosmetics - Their transition into professional friendly products means that their Makeup Show debut is no real surprise. They have recently jumped into the contour game and the rest of their products seem to do well with consumers so it's understandable that they want to cater to professionals.

Senna Cosmetics - Senna is selling Pro Brow Brush and Brow Shaper Powders. Anastasia Beverly Hills is often touted as "the" brand for brow products but do not overlook Senna. They have some great brow products that are worth a glance!

Here's a floor plan if you wanted more information on which booth was which!

The Makeup Show LA 2015 floorplan
I hope to see you there!

Monday, March 16, 2015

The Makeup Show LA 2015: Announcement and Reminder

Just a reminder, the Makeup Show LA is coming up at the end of the month! The Makeup Show LA is my favorite trade show so if you have the opportunity to attend, I highly suggest you take the opportunity. 

the makeup show la 2015

Here's more information if you're not familiar with the show:

It's the largest pro-driven beauty industry event coming on March 28th and 29th.  If you are able to attend, you'll have the opportunity to interact with today’s hottest brands as well as to participate in workshops and seminars led by some of today’s most influential leaders in the industry.   

Brands that will be featured at the show include MAKE UP FOR EVER, NARS, Smashbox, and Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics. Exclusive hands-on workshops and seminars with leading beauty industry professionals will also be available. The Makeup Show LA will shine focus on artistry as well as business, offering attendees a wide variety of experiences over the weekend that can help to catapult their careers over a lifetime. There will be over 75 beauty brands including Diamond Sponsor MAKE UP FOR EVER, Platinum Sponsor Crown Brush and Temptu PRO, Silver Sponsor NARS, Supporting Sponsor Smashbox, Contributing Sponsors, Pinnacle Cosmetics, The Powder Group, On Makeup Magazine, and School Sponsor, Ruby Makeup Academy

The Makeup Show LA will be held on Saturday, March 28, 2015 from 9am to 6pm and on Sunday, March 29, 2015 from 9am to 5pm at The California Market Center, 110 East 9th Street, Los Angeles. For a complete list of participating brands, educational speakers, schedule of events and prices, please visit

I'll be talking about some of the new brands at the show along with some of the brands I plan on checking out, soon!
Designed by Minimalsphere