I made it back all in one piece from
sunny cloudy and windy California. I missed you ladies like crazy and felt lost not having our daily chat sessions. I spent the last few days in Manhattan Beach and Los Angeles, California for the Neutrogena Skin Care Summit. I will be partnering with the company as one of their 2014 ambassadors. I look forward to sharing more about new products, skin care regimens, anti-aging serums, acne prevention and a few stellar items from their cosmetic line.
Warning: this post might get long winded, but I am going to do my best to give a recap of the last couple of days. I could have easily broken the summit up into a few posts, but I was so excited to share my experience. I had to get it all out today. (I wore this H&M skirt and Express crop top on Wednesday.)
Express Top // H&M Skirt not online (love this one and this one) // Daily Look Heels (option here and here) // Forever 21 Clutch (option here and here) // Total Betty Society Necklace c/o // Forever 21 Bracelet (option here) // Gigglosophy Heart Ring c/o
I landed in L.A. Tuesday morning and headed directly to Shade Hotel in Manhattan Beach. I had about 10 minutes to run to my room, change clothes, freshen up, take a few deep breaths and hop on a shuttle bus to the Neutrogena headquarters for the first round of activities.
The PR team and Neutrogena staff had a quaint patio set up for lunch. The tables were filled with fresh flowers and sweet treats. We all knew that a special celebrity ambassador would be speaking at the luncheon. I had my fingers and toes crossed that it would be Kristen Bell and I literally almost died when she walked out. Yes, I am that person who gets star struck. You guys, she was adorable, flawless, witty, charming, genuine and smart. She hosted a Q&A and we got to ask her questions and also hear why she is so passionate about Neutrogena and their product offerings.
After lunch we were split into groups. My first session was all about being pampered in the beauty bar area. We got to try out Neutrogena cosmetics and hair care. My new favorite? The Moisture Smooth Color Stick in Sweet Watermelon. I can't get enough of it. I got lucky enough to have the one and only, Amy Oresman, touch up my make up. She is the personal make-up artist for Hayden Panettiere. She is also known for her work with Emma Roberts, Molly Sims and Jennifer Garner. Holy what?! Yeah, I thought the same thing too. She is beyond amazing, hilarious, personable, crazy talented and I begged her to come home with me.
If Amy wasn't enough, Sam Leonadri did my hair. Again, say what? Okay, I'll be honest, I didn't actually know who he was until this week. He is another celebrity stylist and has worked with hundreds of actresses and is globally known. His Australian accent had me a little giddy, but his magical hands were what got me fired up. He offered up some advice for my hair, introduced me to a great Neutrogena hair mask and created some super sexy waves. I tried to get him to come back to Texas too. No such luck.
After an afternoon of pure magic, we headed back to the hotel to get ready for a networking, roof top cocktail party. It was a fun evening and the perfect chance to really get to know some of the other girls that were attending the summit. I was actually one of the only style bloggers in attendance and the only girl from Texas. The majority of the ladies were either beauty bloggers or had their own YouTube channels. I didn't know single person, but that quickly changed. I made so many new friends and learned more about YouTube than I even knew was possible. Let me tell you, YouTube is where it's at, but the thought of doing videos stresses me out. Anyway, we all had so much in common and plenty to chat about. Everyone was super friendly and fun.
Wednesday morning started bright and early at 7:30 AM with a personal, in room blow out hairstyle. Talk about first class service. We had breakfast at the hotel on the sun deck with a presentation on sun protection and learned some eye opening statistics about skin cancer. It was very informative and I for one will be more diligent with sunscreen in my house. Neutrogena's spray on sunscreen has always been a favorite of mine, but I discovered that they also offer a sun defense stick. I plan on grabbing one next time I am out. Some of the girls said they swear by it and that it's great for facial application.
After breakfast, the shuttle arrived to take us back to the Neutrogena headquarters. As much as I enjoyed being pampered at the beauty bar the day before, Wednesday's experience was even better. I really got to see and hear all that Neutrogena stands for, how much time and research they put into their products. It took six years of research and testing to produce the exact formula combination for their Ultra Gentle Hydrating Cleanser. It's was also refreshing to learn how strongly they believe in being eco-friendly.
One of the most horrific, but coolest experiences out of the entire two days was having our photos taken by a machine that looked underneath our skin to show bacteria, future breakouts that could be brewing and the dreaded white and black heads we all have hiding under our skin. I say horrific because we had to remove our make up for these "x-ray like" photos. It took some courage to go bare on the face in front of a room full of strangers, but we all did it. Luckily, because I am crazy-town obsessed with washing my face and having a consistent regimen with my skin, my under the surface photos came back with an A+. Phew! We did learn that a breakout starts to form eight weeks before we ever see it some to the surface. That is why it's so imperative to have a face cleansing routine that is practiced seven days a week. Most of us only treat our skin once a blemish makes it's appearance. I have been using the Neutrogena Oil Free Acne Face Wash for years and am a true believer in it. They also have a pink grapefruit one that is simply divine. I have used it the past few days and am thinking of permanently switching to it.
After two full days, one last champagne toast and a knowledge filled summit, I traded in my heels for Converse, took a walk down to the beach, met up with an old high school friend for dinner and you guessed it, ended it all in the jacuzzi tub.
Thank you, Neutrogena and the girls with Rpr Marketing Communications. You are all a class act. Your hard work and efforts never went unnoticed. I am still blown away by all the details, hospitality and effort that went into putting this event together. I am beyond grateful and honored to have been a part of it.