During a mid-day session at Saturday’s Beautycon Festival Los Angeles, former Vogue editor, Sarah Brown, center, moderated a fireside chat with supermodel, Adriana Lima, and international makeup star, Sir John.  The trio serve as judges on Lifetime’s upcoming reality competition, American Beauty Star, also hosted by Lima.  Speaking about her professional influences, Brown cited Anna Wintour and Jean Godfrey June as her mentors, describing June as “my first boss, brilliant writer, my most important mentor to this day, one of the best people I know.”  Brown also noted that when she began in beauty, during the 1990s, it was without a beauty influence.  Why? Because at the time, nobody actually looked like her.  This gave Brown the opportunity to develop her personal style and look.  Today she admires unique beauties such as, Tilda Swinton and Cate Blanchett.

Sir John’s mentors have included superstars, Pat McGrath and Charlotte Tilbury, for whom he started working as an assistant.  Speaking to aspiring makeup artists in the audience, he shared, “if you want a career in beauty, you can’t lead until you effectively follow.”  Translation:  be an intern, be an assistant, and learn on the job. Calling today’s youth the “we don’t want to to learn, we just want to be a star” generation, he shared some of his earlier credits, which including working at the MAC Cosmetics counter and doing makeup in a strip club (while still working at Vogue) to make ends meet.  “Don’t be afraid of assisting, don’t be afraid of learning,” he emphasized.

Brown also noted that when Lima began her modeling career, she, too, looked like no one else.  While she did have beauty influences, she quickly embraced her singularity.  “Everyone is unique.  You just have to embrace that uniqueness,” she urged.  Lima is the first to acknowledge that she is not perfect. “I am just myself.  I get out there, I have fun,” but, most importantly, “I love what I do, I love being here.”


AGE:  29
CITY/STATE:  Puyallup, Washington
PHILOSOPHY: Moisturize, Moisturize, Moisturize!!
AM BEAUTY ROUTINE:   Wash face with Shiseido Benefiance Extra Creamy Cleansing Foam, use Dickinson’s Original Witch Hazel Pore Perfecting Toner, apply Shiseido Ultimune Power Infusing Concentrate and Hard Candy Sheer Envy Pore-Defense Primer Serum. Makeup: L’Oréal Paris True Match Lumi Healthy Luminous Makeup, L’Oréal Paris True Match Super-Blendable Powder, Tarte Amazonian Clay 12-hour Blush, Smashbox eye shadow (color depends on my outfit that day), Maybelline New York Lash Sensational Luscious Full Fan Effect Mascara (top & bottom lashes), Rimmel London Exaggerate Waterproof Eyeliner in Black. Set everything with Hard Candy Sheer Envy Mattifying No Shine Setting Spray. Perfume: Marc Jacobs DAISY, YSL Black Opium, or Chanel No 5 L’EAU.
PM BEAUTY ROUTINE:  Wash face with Cailyn Dizzolv’It Makeup Melting Balm, Mask and wash with Dr. Jart+ Dermaclear Trans-Foam Clay (pink, white or green. Rotate throughout week), use Dickinson’s Original Witch Hazel Pore Perfecting Toner. Masque-ology or SOO AE sheet mask every other night. Moisturize with Clinique Moisture Surge (on nights not using sheet masks).
CAN’T LIVE WITHOUT PRODUCT:  My moisturizers. I can get very dry skin and that doesn’t make for a pretty look.
CAN’T LIVE WITHOUT COSMETIC:  Mascara. Definitely!
MOST EXPENSIVE PRODUCT:  Shiseido Ultimune Power Infusing Concentrate
BEST BARGAIN PRODUCT:  Any Hard Candy product. Super cheap & and they work well.
 FAVORITE BEAUTY TOOL:  Tria Beauty Hair Removal Laser
 MISC:  My mother always told me beauty comes from within. This being said, it never hurts to get dolled up and feel pretty on the outside.



The Environmental Working Group (EWG) and Women’s Voices for the Earth allege that the Food and Drug Administration has failed to act on dangerous hair straighteners which contain unsafe levels of  formaldehyde, in a motion filed July 28th in federal district court.  This is an addendum to the groups’ lawsuit against the FDA for its failure to act on a six-year-old petition requesting an investigation into popular hair smoothing treatments that are still sold in stores and salons. These straighteners – often known as keratin treatments or by the name of one prominent brand, Brazilian Blowout – contain formaldehyde, a known human carcinogen and potent allergen.

“The FDA has failed to protect stylists and consumers from exposure to formaldehyde,” said Melanie Benesh, a legislative attorney at EWG. “Since at least 2008, the agency has known about the health hazards associated with these hair straightening products and done nothing. Despite the complaints, the FDA has yet to take action to regulate these products.”  High levels of formaldehyde make many keratin hair straightening treatments a serious health threat for both clients and salon workers. These treatments involve liquids applied to hair, which are then heated using blow dryers and straightening irons. The high temperatures of these hair styling tools cause the liquids to release formaldehyde into the air. Read more of this story »