Welcome to The Beauty Marketplace

Welcome to The Beauty Marketplace – your one stop shop to dish and discover the true and reliable people, places, and products guaranteed to make you look and feel your best. Because honesty is the best policy – especially when it comes to Health & Beauty!
There are lots of blogs out there dishing on what’s new and hot in the realm of health and beauty, but what I ultimately end up discovering is most of the recommended products fall short. I wanted to create a blog where I feature honest products that honestly work. We all lead busy lifestyles and most of us do not have time for trial and error, so I figured I would cut to the chase and feature effective products without the guess work, so you can be on your merry go way to living the life you love.
Having the advantage of working for a Health and Beauty show,  many products ultimately land in my lap one way or another. The first product I would like to feature was literally handed to me by HBA’s event director Jill Birkett. Returning very inspired from the WWD Beauty Forum and kindly remembering my woes with frizzy hair, Jill handed me Living Proof’s Straight Making No Frizz Styling Cream for medium to thick hair. (My hair easily falls into the Thick hair category)

Rob Robillard, CEO of Living Proof and a speaker at the WWD forum, swore by this product which shies away from the typical silicone ingredient found in most anti-frizz products and instead uses the ingredient PolyfluoroEster, which according to the website,  is an anti-frizz active that really does the job. Talk about The Beauty Marketplace! What other beauty website not only lists all the ingredients found in a product, but also describes the benefits of each ingredient in layman’s terms for you and I to understand? Check it out for yourself at http://livingproof.com/products/3_PD_SC.php .

To be totally honest with you, I was very cynical when Jill first handed me this product. Past experience has led me to learn not to get my hopes up about any product promising to rid your hair of frizz. I have been disappointed too many times to count, but needless to say I was pleasantly surprised after first use of Living Proof’s Straight Making No Frizz Styling Cream. What was my “Living Proof” that this product works?
After my first application of the styling cream I was on my way out the door and in such a rush I forgot to apply hair spray. Jumping into an open air car on windy day without hairspray usually equates to a recipe for disaster with my hair texture, but thanks to my No Frizz styling cream I was good to go! The added bonus? Not only does this product protect hair and maintain frizz, it also features various conditioning agents preserving the health of your hair and protecting against split ends. How awesome is that?
For information on Living Proof’s extensive line of products please go to http://livingproof.com/NoFrizz.php .  
Have an Honestly Beautiful Day,

December’s Breakout Brand of the Month

A former Vogue intern turned employee myself, it is of no surprise my pick for The Beauty Marketplace’s December Breakout Brand of the Month comes from fellow Vogue alums CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund nominee Juan Carlos Obando and Acclaimed Hairstylist/Vogue Contributor Didier Malige. Both of whom are the creative force behind  The Beauty Marketplace’s December Breakout Brand of the MonthNumber 4 High Performance Hair Care.

One of the main criteria for a Breakout Brand of the Month is an honestly effective product line. Those of you who have been reading my blogs of the past, are well aware of my woes with hair care. So, when I tell you I have found a shampoo and conditioner that is super effective, I mean it! Honest!
The first time I used No. 4 High Performance Hair Care, I used a Shampoo and Conditioner from their L’eau de Mer Hydrate Collection.The way one can almost instantaneously predict the effectiveness of a shampoo or conditioning product is based on how a product feels during your initial application. For instance, the first moment I applied L’eau de Mer Hydrating Shampoo, my hair almost immediately felt lightweight, not knotty or heavy, with a silky texture making my locks very easy to comb through and cleanse in the shower.  The L’eau de Mer Hydrating Conditioner was the icing on the cake, and before I knew it I was out of the shower, drying my way into a wonderful hair day.
Want a product that’s perfect on the go and will work wonders protecting your hair from the heat if you going away this Holiday/ Resort season? From the Number 4 Essentials Collection, try Lumiere d’hiver Super Comb Prep and Protect.
Number 4 products utilize only the highest quality essential oils and extracts, excluding all ingredients potentially toxic to humans, the environment, and even rare vintage couture. This means no harsh sulfates and no stripping alcohols!
Four Signature Liquid Complexes define all No. 4 products, drawing upon water and an advanced delivery system that takes beneficial botanical ingredients creating tiny molecules that easily infuse to your hair. The tiny molecules deliver anti-aging, strengthening, color preserving, and purifying effects on all hair types. All these effects No. 4 Haircare aptly describes as “I can’t believe I fit into this dress” results.
With packaging that looks just as chic in my bathroom as it would in Bergdorf Goodman, it is easy to see how this innovative hair care brand runs parallel to fashion, art, music, and industrial design creative cycles. As Number 4 CEO/Founder Rick Hough explains, “First and foremost we are a high performance hair care company, but at the same time I believe in the power of creative minds and our Style Bureau synthesizes them perfectly.”
Via the Number 4 Style Bureau, every season, the No.4 brand collaborates with and supports a multitude of  talented hairstylists, artists, fashion designers, photographers, architects, environmentalists, musicians, and scientists. Collectively the Number 4 Style Bureau not only decides where No. 4 goes next, but also collectively works towards improving the state of the planet.
So this holiday season, when your looking for a nice gift for a friend or family member, choose from any or all of No. 4’s Hydrate, Volume, Style, or Essentials Collections. Not only because these products honestly work and have been deemed The Beauty Marketplace’s December Breakout Brand of the Month, but because they are giving back in ways to make our world a better, more liveable place.
Number 4 High Performance Hair Careis available at exclusive retailers, spas, and salons, including Fred Segal. Visit www.number4hair.com for a complete list.
Have an Honestly Beautiful Day,

November’s Breakout Brand of the Month

“Walking in The Beauty Way” is a wonderful philosophy emphasizing the need for harmony between people, nature, land, and the spiritual world. This philosophy is the life abiding theme of The Dine or Navajo People. The very people who just so happen to be the inspiration for The Beauty Marketplace’s November Breakout Brand of the Month, appropriately titled Navajo Skin Care.


Navajo Skin Care not only whole heartedly embodies the  “Walking in The Beauty Way” philosophy, but also lives up to all of The Beauty Marketplace’s Brand of the Month standards with an honestly effective product line, a compelling background story, as well as really unique brand attributes.


Noticing a significant amount of natural ‘claims’ in the market, Navajo Founder and CEO Fermín Návar, wanted to truly develop a 100% natural product line in order to keep true to the Navajo concept.  As you use Navajo’s products you can feel, smell, and see the earth-friendly natrality of this line in everything from their Expression Line Moisturizer to the Navajo Shave Balm and the Foaming Hand Cleanser.


A Brown Sugar Exfoliating Face Scrub is my honest favorite leaving my skin feeling fresh and pure. Descried on their website – www.navajoskincare.com – as a unique blend of soft rainwater, natural cleansers and pure essential oils providing necessary ingredients for optimal skin health. Follow this scrub with Navajo’s Eye & Face Moisturizer and your skin will be prepped to go forth into the brisk winter season that lies ahead.


Suffer from acne? Navajo also has developed both a gentle natural Facial Scrub and Moisturizer with a new ingredient to aid with scaring.


What is most compelling about Navajo Skincare is they are an official partner with the Navajo Nation. They donate substantial portions of their profits for the benefit of the Navajo People. Under an exclusive license, Fermín’s team is further motivated to cultivate a product line adhering to typical Navajo traditions and ways of life.


The Navajo traditions are what add to this skincare line’s unique brand attributes and elements. One attribute you do not see much of yet in the beauty industry is Navajo Skin Care does not use any artificial preservatives. Only natural, food grade preservatives are used providing gentleness and stability. 


Because all of Navajo’s ingredients are so natural and fresh, consumers will receive more nutritional and restorative benefits to their skin. To attest to these natural, food grade preservatives Navajo’s products carry what they call a “Freshness Date”. Similar to grocery items, you want to use the skincare products before the freshness and effectiveness of the natural ingredients and preservatives run out.      


While researching the Navajo brand, I had the opportunity to get to know a little the people behind the line. Never have I encountered a more passionate and sincere group of people, putting so much time and positive energy into all they do. Their passion clearly translates into their work with an honestly fabulous line that is Navajo SkincareThe November The Beauty Marketplace Breakout Brand of the Month.


So during a month when we all here in the U.S. are preparing to soon give thanks, lets pay tribute to a line, a brand, a nation making a difference with a wonderful philosophy on life.


Have  an Honestly Beautiful Day,




October’s Breakout Brand of the Month

Since I began The Beauty Marketplace, I have come across so many promising, up and coming brands, worth sharing. Brands with honestly effective product lines, and amazing stories, waiting to get noticed. Many of these brands inspired me so much, I wanted to do my part in giving them the recognition they deserve. In order to do so, I have decided to launch The Beauty Marketplace’s Breakout Brand of the Month.  

Around the first Wednesday of each month, beginning this October 2009, I will spotlight a brand, awarding the selected brand the title of The Beauty Marketplace’s Breakout Brand of the Month. Brands will be selected based on the criteria of  an honestly effective product line, a compelling background story, and unique attribute(s) which set the brand apart from the crowd (like packaging, philanthropy, special ingredients, etc…). At year’s end, readers will vote on one brand from each month’s selection, to determine who will be awarded The Beauty Marketplace’s Breakout Brand of the Year.
For The Beauty Marketplace’s 1st Breakout Brand of the Month,  in lieu of October being Breast Cancer Awareness month, I want to introduce readers to a brand that was inspired by woman who have battled breast cancer. 
The October The Beauty Marketplace Breakout Brand of the Month is En Pointe Skin Solutions by Dr. Christine Rodgers.
Dr. Christine Rodgers is said to be  in the practice of empowering women. A breast cancer survivor and celebrated plastic surgeon, she has intimate knowledge of the common skin and body problems that develop with aging, cancer treatment, cancer recovery, and hormone-related conditions. Having worked with countless patients, studying the skin for years, Dr. Rodgers developed En Pointe Skin Solutions to focus not just on the skin’s surface, but also the skin’s composition.
I was fortunate enough to sample the En Pointe Skin Solutions Trio. The Trio consists of Encore Renewal Serum, Pas de Trois Age Delay Eye Solution, and Fouette Firming Moisturizer. Entertained by the unique product names inspired by Dr. Rodgers love affair with dance, I was honestly pleased with each products end results. Pas de Trois Age Delay Eye Solution was my favourite of the three resulting in almost immediate under eye improvements.
En Pointe ‘s unique packaging colored a ballerina pink and white, is what initially drew me into to learn more about the brand.  After doing some research, I discovered the line was inspired by the women Dr. Rodgers met when she laced up her dancing shoes to help heal her body and spirit during her battle with breast cancer. Her personal experience helped shape the formulations for En Pointe. Comprised of natural botanicals, active extracts and a proprietary anti-aging complex resulting in beautiful balanced skin with a natural, healthy glow, makes En Pointe a brand worth writing about.
Battling breast cancer and turning her experience into something positive makes Dr. Rodgers a role model to all woman, especially those who have been effected by this terrible disease. In honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month and The Beauty Marketplace’s October Breakout Brand of the MonthEn Pointe Skin Solutions, please visit http://www.nbcam.org/about_faq.cfm to see how you can do your part.
For more information on Dr. Christine Rodgers and her En Pointe Skin Solutions brand, please visit – http://empoweryourskin.com/
Have an Honestly Beautiful Day,


March’s Breakout Brand of the Month











With the passing of the 82nd Annual Academy Awards, having watched all the movie stars sashay down the red carpet in their glamorous gowns, tuxedos, and jewels;  most of us cannot help but watch in awe as our inner starlet starts to surface. We all, to some degree, have a starlet or diva hidden within the depths of our own personalities, where we long to be primped and pampered, like a movie star. One beauty brand in particular pays special homage to our inner divas, with clever product names related to Old School Hollywood glamour, and packaging design reminiscent of the Hollywood Walk of Fame. This glamorous brand is March’s The Beauty Marketplace Breakout Brand of the MonthStarlet Glam


Starlet Glam creates luxurious, handcrafted, hypoallergenic bath and body products designed to dazzle, using gorgeous micas for shimmer, and ultra fine glitter for a hint of sparkle. 100% vegetable base, all products are handcrafted in small batches and made fresh to order. I honestly have never used bath products that smell so fresh and delicious!  


Starlet Glam’s Red Carpet Sugar FixSugar Body Polish and Princess Velvet Body Icing smelled so sweet, I honestly was tempted to run to the nearest bakery in order to satisfy my sweet tooth. The Cherry Almond Silk Goddess Hand and Body Lotion smelled like fresh pastries, making me smell so irresistible, you would want to eat me right up.


For all you ladies born with glitter in their veins, Starlet Glam’s Little Black Dress Shimmer Lip Balm and Burlesque Showgirl Shimmer Shower Gel are must haves! Date night anyone?


One woman definitely born with glitter in her veins, is Starlet Glam’s founder Peggy Paliotta. In her spare time you will find Peggy doing some glamour modelling, so this is a woman who honestly knows a thing or two about channelling her inner diva.


Peggy has always had a passion for beauty products and all things pink and glamorous, like Starlet Glam. Her passion and addiction to Old Hollywood led to the creation of her elegant bath and body products.


After browsing a magazine article about handmade lip balms and soaps back in 1998, Ms. Paliotta thought, “Hey! I can do that…” And launched her own line while living in NYC. A new start in Rhode Island, where the resources tend to be a little more fresh, resulted in an innovative line of products, which are now known to consumers as Starlet Glam.


Starlet Glam’s bestseller is a corset shaped soap, titled the Bombshell Marilyn Corset, inspired by  none other then Marilyn Monroe, to whom Peggy honestly has some resemblance.


The diva-liscious product line was handed out in gift bags at the Academy Awards as well as The Golden Globes and American Music Awards. Now, you too can get sudsy with the stars when you purchase March’s The Beauty Marketplace Breakout Brand of the Month – Starlet Glam. Available online at










http://www.starletglambathbody.etsy.com . So go ahead and spoil that inner diva!


Have an Honestly Beautiful Day,


<33 Mary


Authenticity Chic

In continuation from last week’s blog I’d like to touch upon Horst Rechelbacher’s, Founder of Intelligent Nutrients and Aveda,  keynote address at the 2009 HBA Global Expo. Horst delivered the first portion of an honestly profound speech on the topic of “Nutritional Chemistry Made with 100% Certified Organic Ingredients". Horst’s main theme was authenticity. His message was we have become an outdated, petrochemical society where we must be innovative and authentic in order to break free, and change for the better. 

The same theme rang true on a recent trip to Boston. I had the pleasure of meeting Hugo Saavedra, President and Founder of Hugo Naturals. Because he is extremely honest and passionate about all he does and creates, Hugo caught my attention when we were discussing his all-natural body care products.
Hugo explained to me, much like Horst, the importance of authenticity in the marketplace. Too often we substitute the real thing for the quick fix in order to save time and money, but Hugo feels this is not the way we should live our lives. Hugo pointed out we are already seeing the downside to these quick fixes and fillers we use in our products – “just look at the state of the current economy”! Hugo even has his own blog where you can read first hand his earth friendly perspectives: http://hugo.typepad.com/my_weblog/ .
Hugo Naturals products are 100% natural, and have honestly never felt so smooth and clean. I was fortunate enough to sample his Brown Sugar & Kumquat Body Scrub, Mango & Sweet Orange Body Butter, as well as a fresh cut slice of Hugo’s French Lavender Soap. MMMMmMmMm I am getting excited just thinking about these products as I write!
 “What we don’t put into our line of all-natural body care products is just as important as what we do put into them” is the company mantra. You can honestly notice the “authentic” ingredients as you use each product, and I recommend you give them all a try – www.hugonaturals.com
Both Horst and Hugo are authentically chic in their own ways, but they both stand by the same message: we all need to work together to make this world a better place by respecting our planet as well as one another. 
Have an Honestly Beautiful Day,

Mary J. is in the Spot Tonight…

The dust has settled and the calm now restored to the HBA team office. I cannot believe The 2009 HBA Global Expo has already passed, and what an honest success the show turned out to be! I am so proud to be a member of the team that made it all come together. We worked long and hard, but the final result was honestly well worth it in the end. I would be writing all night long if I were to go over every highlight of the HBA show. For now, I am going to focus on just one:
What sets The Beauty Marketplace apart from your average beauty blog is we feature not only products and places, but people guaranteed to make you look and feel your best. HBA’s 1st Annual Positively Beautiful Award recipient, Mary J. Blige, is the epitome of The Beauty Marketplace – both inside and out. Her music has touched millions (“Real Love” continues to remain one of my personal favorite anthems), and Mary J. is now taking the beauty industry by storm as a spokesperson for Carol’s Daughter, in addition to launching her new fragrance “My Life” (named after her certified triple platinum 2nd album).
Most importantly, Mary J. Blige is an active philanthropist giving back to the community and helping women through the founding of the FFAWN organization. FFAWN – Foundation For the Advancement of Women Now – is dedicated to helping women gain the confidence and skills they need to reach their full individual potential through career development, education, family, and finance.  
In person, Mary J. Blige is just as real, glowing, chic, humble, and authentic as you would imagine her to be. At first a little shy, reserved, and soft-spoken, Mary J. Blige is the embodiment of a true woman. Gracious enough to share a few moments of her time, I was able to ask her a few questions in order to share her answers with you. From one Mary J. to another, here is how our conversation went down – (I am MJP, she is MJB): 
MJP: How does it feel to be the recipient of HBA’s first ever Positively Beautiful Award?
MJB: Amazing- these are the awards I enjoy receiving because they actually mean something. Beauty really does come from within. This is something I’ve strived for my whole life.
MJP: Since FFAWN’s mission is to empower women from all walks of life, what is one piece of advice you have been given or would like to give to The Beauty Marketplace readers in hopes of empowering them?
MJB: Never give up on you! Always believe in yourself and, most importantly, never give up on you!
MJP: What is your daytime/night-time beauty routine?
MJB: I don’t really have one, but I never fall asleep with make-up on – it gives you wrinkles. I drink lots of water, and I always take my Multi Vitamin, once a day.
MJP: Name some of your must have, cannot live without beauty products you honestly swear by?
MJB: Well, right now I am wearing Carol’s Daughter Almond Cookie Shea Soufflé. I love it! It smells so good! I also love the Ocean scented Shea Soufflé. I love Carol’s Daughter – their stuff is the best and I use it all the time!
Once again, it is The Beauty Marketplace’s aim to recognize not only the products and places, but the people who make you look and feel your best. Mary J. always does just that with her music, her beauty, and now with FFAWN. Thanks to her presence at HBA’s Keynote Address, along with a powerful presentation from Aveda Founder Horst Rechelbacher (more to come on Horst at a later date), this was the event that, in my opinion, raised the bar and set the tone for the entire 2009 HBA Global Expo.
Bravo to Mary J. and HBA on a job well done!
Have an Honestly Beautiful Day,


We want your Honest Feedback! For comments, questions, or future topic suggestions please e-mail mpalmieri@hbaexpo.

Scrub a Dub Dub (just add water)

Any product that offers convenience, is honestly number 1 in my book. Any item that takes just one small step out of my typically hectic daily routine is a beauty product I can truly utilize. The product I have in mind is one I am surprised did not take off sooner as I find it to be a novel concept – a foam sponge with soap already inside.

Spongeables is honestly effective in delivering consumers an ideal sponge to shower with. Inside is an amazingly smelling, moisturizing soap giving you that squeaky, feeling clean. Spongeables saves time in the shower (Just add water) and saves money in your pocket (sponge and soap all in one). A new revolutionary Patent-pending Technology Foam-release System, Spongeables  is essentially the most perfect sponge, allowing you to exfoliate your body and scrub away  all those dry skin cells – not too harsh but just right! Don’t feel like exfoliating? No worries – the other side of the sponge is soft and gentle on the skin. Spongeables is now available for feet too!
Available in a whole slew of delectable scents from Lavender and Spicy Mango to – my favorite – Eucalyptus. For feet, for hands, fun shapes, fun sizes and colors; Spongeables is a great add on to any gift, as a gift, or an economical treat for oneself.
For retail locations and more information visit www.spongeables.com   So suds up and…
Have an Honestly Beautiful Day,


February’s Breakout Brand of the Month


Whether you have a boyfriend or not, make it a point to buy yourself, or a friend some candy this Valentine’s Day. I am not referring to just any candy, I am referring to Hard Candy – The Beauty Marketplace’s February Breakout Brand of the Month.
Hardy Candy is an in your face cosmetic line with uniquely girly, punk chic packaging that instantly catches your eye. Offering plenty of product options to wow that hot date (261 items to be exact), what began as a high end nail polish endeavour, is now available in mass, at affordable price points, in a Walmart near you.
The brand was founded in 1995 by Dineh Mahajer. Hoping to attain lighter nail polish colors, Mahajer would mix white out ink corrector, into her darker shades. When salons started to take note of her lighter funky colors, Hard Candy was born.
Hard Candy was later sold to luxury group LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton for high end retail distribution, but suffered quite a loss when the market became over saturated with look-a-like brands.
Falic Fashion Group took over and came to the rescue, reinventing the brand, when last year Chief Executive Jerome Falic, began working with contract manufacturer, NuWorld Beauty, preparing the brand to be launched in mass.  
A partnership was formed with Walmart, and after officially making a debut to celebs in a special gift suite at the 2010 Golden Globes in Los Angeles, products have been flying off the shelves as well as selling out on Walmart.com.
My picks for the honestly hottest Hard Candy products this Valentine’s Day?
  • Tasty, tasty.. for some V-day fun use Hard Candy’s Outrageously Delicious Flavored Body Powder in Pink Sugar
  • For some major sparkle,  adorn your nails with Hard Candy’s Just Nails Date Night Nail Color – the bottle even comes with a fun heart shaped ring!
  • Hard Candy’s Blush Crush Baked Blush in Honeymoon gives you that glowing, glow
  • Vamp it up in Hard Candy’s Cupid Lipstick
  • Last but not least, Hard Candy’s easy to use Intensifeye Radiant Shadow Stick in Love is perfect product for the girl on the go
So, this Valentine’s Day surprise your girlfriends, spoil yourself, or spice it up for that special someone with Hard CandyThe Beauty Marketplace’s February Breakout Brand of the Month.
Have an Honestly Beautiful Day,
<33 Mary

January’s Breakout Brand of the Month

Time flies when your having fun, or working hard – either way, I still cannot wrap my head around the fact that it is now 2010. Not just a new year, but a new decade, so here’s to an Honestly fresh start! 

Some where between the hustle and bustle of Christmas and New Years, I found myself in the very adorable, quaint town of Woodstock, VT. It was in Woodstock where I just so happened to stumble across The Beauty Marketplace’s January Breakout Brand of the Month. 

The new month, and the new year, stumbled upon me so fast I found myself startled at the fact I already had to decide on a new brand to highlight. “Wasn’t it just December!!?”, I thought… As I walked into town to go shopping, a light bulb went on in my head, when I stumbled upon an adorable little shop, with a self titled Bath and Body line called Thistle The Beauty Marketplace’s January Breakout Brand of the Month 

The Woodstock Inn & Resort where I stayed only honors local artisans, so in every guest room, we had our very own Thistle Lemongrass Handmade Soap and Thistle Lemongrass Body lotion. Beginning as a moisturizing combination of olive, coconut and palm oils, the soap glides on as naturally as it sounds. I found the Lemongrass scent very invigorating, particularly in the morning hours. The body lotion was just as scent-tastic, went on smooth, and absorbed easily into the skin.  

Also in our room was Thistle Honey Blossom Shampoo and Thistle Honey Blossom Conditioner. The shampoo and conditioner replenished my hair, making it smell and feel so fresh after a long day on the slopes. Even my boyfriend commented on how much he liked using the products… For a man to notice a beauty product, you know what your using has to be good! = ) 

After discovering Thistle’s stand alone store in town, I purchased some Lavender Mint Lip Balm, currently sitting in my coat pocket, I find both soothing and refreshing. I also bought candles from the Way Out Wax Sweet Dream Collection…. perfect for romantic or leisurely evenings at home. 

The story of Thistle is honestly a good one. A fantasy most of us city folks may have of carrying out from time to time: A kindergarten teacher from the big city, longing to get away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life, moves to the country where she begins to concoct natural beauty baths and soaps with her girlfriends.  

Fast forward a few years later,  you have yourself a nice little business producing beauty products which make everyone in Woodstock, and those who pass through it (myself included) very happy. 

All Thistle Bath & Body Products are handmade from the “fat of the land” in Woodstock, VT. Be sure to sign up to Thistle’s Soap of the Month Club at www.thistlebathbody.com   

Here’s to wishing everyone a very Happy New Year! 

Have an Honestly Beautiful Day, 

<33 Mary