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Our beauty expert tries out REN!

Posted on: August 29th, 2014 by admin

Right after getting started with Ooh! Beautiful, I felt excitedly overwhelmed by the plethora of healthy skincare options that surrounded me.  I’m that cliche “kid in a candy shop” when it comes to cosmetics, skin and haircare — I just can’t help myself.  It’s in my genes … thanks, Mom!  At any rate, I was thrilled to have a chance to familiarize myself with a skincare line called REN.  I was especially thrilled because I’m always noticing beauty awards for their top-selling products featured in InStyle, Harper’s Bazaar, and Marie Claire, so naturally, this type of press peaked my interest!


REN Skincare’s philosophy is summed up in three words: performance, purity, and pleasure.  Their entire line is referred to as “clean skincare”.  The “performance” of the line is proven through groundbreaking formulas that have undergone rigorous testing (NOT on animals), with clinically proven results.  The products’ “purity” is due in part to plant and mineral-derived ingredients that leave out damaging synthetics, and the “pleasure” comes from product texture and their clean, calming fragrance that’s barely detectable, thus allowing an overall pleasurable experience just from daily washing and treating.


I’ll admit, my initial reaction to “clean skincare” is typically “will it really work?” Being an epidermal problem-child for as long as I can remember, I’m always on the lookout for effective skincare — aggressively effective, in fact. Therefore, I was a little hesitant about investing in a natural regimen.  Alas, I bit the bullet and did something GOOD for myself and actually bought “clean skincare”.  My three selections consisted of: ClearCalm 3 Clarifying Clay Cleanser, ClearCalm 3 Replenishing Gel Cream, and their Micro Polish Cleanser (I love a good, gentle scrub once, maybe twice a week depending on the weather). Physical exfoliation isn’t necessarily bad for your skin, unless you’re extremely sensitive. As long as the scrub you’re working with isn’t full of harsh granules, a good polishing is absolutely necessary.


I’ve been using the ClearCalm range for oily, acne-prone skin for about a week and so far, I’m impressed!  My skin feels extremely clean after washing. Note: always double wash! *Remove your makeup thoroughly and THEN cleanse your face.*  The clay cleanser was calming with its light texture and fragrance, and gave my face that squeaky-clean feel after washing. (I was pleasantly surprised!)  Over the past week of using this, along with the ClearCalm cream at night (a light, non-greasy cream with very little fragrance), I’ve noticed a more even-toned complexion, smaller pores, and an overall stress-free look to my skin.  Harsh chemicals aside, it IS possible to use clean, gentle formulas to achieve great skin.  It’s all about making sure it has effective, quality ingredients that will specifically address your skin’s concerns — whatever they may be, and in my case, excess oil and breakouts (even in my 30′s) is my continual case.  The ClearCalm range contains an anti-bacterial agent, and as most of us know, clogged pores begins with bacteria, dirt and oil.  This aspect appealed to me right off the bat and is certainly doing it’s diligence.


With regards to the scrub — great choice for someone with oily skin, aging skin, dry skin; you name it!  It serves as a cleanser and scrub in one, so once you’ve removed your makeup, you can simply wash with this once or twice a week and luxuriate in the look of soft, radiant skin.

Needless to say, I’m beyond excited about today’s REN event at 1pm in Ooh! because I’ll hopefully have the opportunity to get my hands on their ClearCalm Mask and BB cream.  I’m of course BB/CC obsessed — who wouldn’t be with a 20-month-old attached to their hip?!  It’s an easy, fuss-free way to even out your complexion for a day of work, errands, and can even double as a makeup primer.  REN’s Satin Perfection BB Cream has won a variety of awards, proving that “BB hype” is indeed well-deserved. ;)

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Stop by Ooh! Beautiful today for a mini-facial! Beautiful, healthier skin that radiates youth and wellness?  Now that’s pure, performing pleasure if you ask me.


Katie Shayda

Red Carpet Radiant – REN Mini-Facial

Posted on: August 26th, 2014 by admin

Are you red carpet ready?

After summer of fun in the sun it’s time to erase the damage and replenish your skin. REN‘s line of clean skincare will do just that! They have a created a five step system to gently remove dead, damaged skin and reveal radiant, smooth skin that will leave you ready for the red carpet!

Step 1
Micro Polish Cleanser
1-2 minute massage with warm water using your hands to gently exfoliate and remove dead skin.
Step 2
Resurfacing AHA Concentrate
While you skin is still damp allow this to absorb, decongest, and renew skin’s surface.
Step 3
Glycol Lactic Radiance Mask
Massage in with water and set with gauze. Leave on for 10-15 mins then rinse.
Step 4
Vita Mineral Omega 3 Serum
Step 5
REN moisturizer and eye cream
Apply the REN moisturizer for your skin type, be it sensitive, normal, dry, blemish prone, or combination. This final step is personalized for your skin and will leave your skin Emmy ready!


Click HERE to RSVP for our REN event this Friday at Ooh! Beautiful!

or email to reserve your space!




Antonym Cosmetics with Ashley & Katie!

Posted on: August 22nd, 2014 by admin

Gentle on the skin, as well as the environment?  In a world full of harsh chemicals, toxins and waste, Antonym cosmetics delivers a “twofer” in the beauty industry. From their ECOCERT mineral range, richly pigmented powders baked in terra-cotta, to their stunningly soft, vegan, professional makeup brushes — Antonym is a brand you can feel good knowing about.




I tried these products, which are famous not only for their gorgeous bamboo packaging, but because they’re the perfect mix of natural ingredients and striking color, on Out Of Hand’s Ashley Bridges.  Their products are extremely gentle, but still have that staying power we Charleston folks so commonly rely on!

Beginning with a smiling and fresh-faced Ashley, I used their baked foundations in two similar shades, light and light-medium, swirling them together onto her already primed face (I used Jane Iredale primer).  We also spot concealed with Jane Iredale’s concealer to cover any redness — very few blemishes on Miss Ashley, so very little prep was needed! She would mention how relaxed she felt while I was applying these terra-cotta baked powders. I have a feeling the sensation of their expertly soft, vegan brushes had a lot to do with that! I found the handle length of these brushes to be perfect for grip and control. Not a single bristle came off on Ashley’s skin, proving the ultimate quality of these tools.


Although I didn’t use this particular tool on Ashley, I am a big fan  Kabuki Brushes, and if you’ve never tried one, you must – it makes a big difference in the application of mineral powders, creating that extra-flawless look. Antonym carries one that comes with it’s very own zippered pouch, keeping the kabuki clean and residue-free. (love!) I instead used their large powder brush on Ashley because I wanted to feel their entire range of long-handled tools, and believe me, this fluffy brush worked just as well and was an absolute pleasure to use!

Next, I applied the darker shades of the mineral powders in medium-dark and dark to contour her cheeks, nose and to give her face that overall sun-kissed glow. I then primed her eyes with Blinc’s fabulous eye-primer and evened out her lids with the cream shade of their “Croisette” Organic Quattro Eye Shadow palette. I applied the copper shade in their “Noisette” Quattro palette with a dense, mid-size, flat eye-brush to really pack on that pigment for intensity. Next, I added depth to to her lids with the shimmery mocha shade, using their blending eye-brush in the crease, adding a touch of the Croisette palette’s shimmery pink right onto the center of her lid for that added pop of sheen.  I took their two cheek colors in Copper and Peach and lightly applied those two together to the apples of her cheeks. The Copper shade is highly pigmented with a lot of gold shimmer, however, with a light hand, it’s very natural when blended thoroughly with the Peach.

For lighter skin tones, the Peach would suit just fine for a natural and fresh flush of color. I highlighted Ashley’s face with the Noisette Quattro’s shimmery champagne under and around Ashley’s eye — along the orbital bone, lightly down the center of her nose, and then barely touching the bow of her upper lip. This gave her face a radiant look and highlighted her features where natural light would normally fall. We completed the look with their natural, water-proof eye pencil in Noir. The application of this pencil was very rich, so we had to buff the line with their angled-tip, liner-shader brush to soften the look. After a full coat of their Lola Lash natural mascara (not clumpy at all!) to add volume to her lashes, I applied their nude lip crayon that is of course natural, waterproof and enriched with sunflower oil and shea butter (from organic farming) — giving Ashley’s lips that perfectly tauny-nude wash of color, ideal for this overall look!


With Antonym Cosmetics, it’s possible to be chic, glamorous and natural! Pop into Ooh! Beautiful to try this new line, soon!  You’re certain to fall in love — especially with their brushes. ;)


Katie Shayda

The Girls of Summer by Nikki Hardin

Posted on: August 18th, 2014 by admin

The Girls of Summer

These sweet-tea days and full-moon nights are drawing to a close, but we have a few more weeks left to lie on a porch swing and read as if we were 12-year-old girls again. Remember when you immersed yourself in a book, lived in it, swam reluctantly out of its pages to make your bed or set the table? Those books took you to a foreign landscape or psychological territory you’d never experience otherwise. Here are some of my old favorite novels that might encourage lazy August to last a little longer. None of the books are new, but they’re all guaranteed to take you on a road trip of the mind. Pick one of these or one of your own and become one of the Girls of Summer again.

The Bean Trees

Barbara Kingsolver

Kingsolver’s first novel and my favorite of everything she’s written. It’s the story of Taylor Greer who sets off to escape her Kentucky roots and the constrict life she’d have there. Along the way on her road trip to nowhere in particular, she “inherits” Turtle, an abandoned three-year-old Native American. How they end up in Tucson and the life they create there has stayed with me for years. It’s a book I just recommended to my own daughter and will be rereading again soon myself.

  bean trees

The House at Riverton

Kate Morton

Amazon describes this as “the story of an aristocratic family, a house, a mysterious death and a way of life that vanished forever, told in flashback by a woman who witnessed it all and kept a secret for decades.” It’s a great plot — part upstairs, part downstairs — and it’s no surprise that it’s been compared to Daphne du Maurier’s novels. You’ll be telling the kids to get their own dinner so you can keep reading.


The Whistling Season

Ivan Doig

Set in rural Montana in the early 1900s, The Whistling Season has a cast of unforgettable characters in the homesteader town of Marias Coulee. When a widower with three boys to raise hires a housekeeper, the intriguing Rose Llewellyn, sight unseen from an ad in a newspaper, he didn’t expect to also get her scholarly bachelor brother, Morris Morgan. When the local teacher elopes, Morris, with no teaching experience, takes over the one-room school, and the inspiration he brings to the job forms the joyful core of the book. This is a book to re-read and to foist on your friends to their everlasting delight.

whistling season

The Light Years (Vol 1 of The Cazalet Chronicles)

Elizabeth Jane Howard

Howard was married to literary lion Kingsley Amis, but I didn’t know that when I discovered The Cazalet Chronicles in a little bookstore in Highlands, NC, one summer day. I was hooked and tore my way through the five volumes like a starving woman. It was the perfect summer book because it’s one of those family sagas that move slowly and deliberately through time. About three generations of an upper-class family on an English estate from the late 1930s to the 1950s, it was deliciously addictive. You can rent the Masterpiece Theatre production if you don’t have the patience for the full read, but be warned that it ends halfway through the story.

  The Light Years

Here To Get My Baby Out of Jail

Louise Shivers

When I read this tiny jewel of a book, I couldn’t believe it was a first novel. Set in the tobacco country of depression-era North Carolina in 1937, the story is told by Roxy Walston, the 20-year-old daughter of the town undertaker. She’s also the wife of a struggling tobacco farmer and the mother of a two-year-old. When drifter Jack Ruffin comes to town looking for work and is sent out to the farm to help Roxy’s husband, events are set in place that will change Roxy’s life forever. Shivers died this year at her home in Augusta, Georgia, but her book will live on.


A little “hello” & RMS Beauty

Posted on: August 11th, 2014 by admin

Being the “new girl on the block”, (aka the new gal on Pitt Street) I couldn’t be happier to be that girl and the voice behind Ooh! Beautiful’s gorgeous, organic makeup and beauty products. Becoming a member of this truly inspiring and talented team of folks has driven my passion for artistry and cosmetics further than I could’ve ever imagined.

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Each week, I’ll be sharing a post to this blog, focusing on the healthy ways to remain fresh-faced and beautiful, while showcasing lines that are currently residing in this charming, apothecary-style beauty boutique!  I’ll also feature new lines as they’re added to Ooh! Beautiful, providing customers with a variety of truly trusted, high-performing products that match our mission to live beautifully, the healthy way.

As you may already know, Ooh! Beautiful is fully committed to being Charleston’s number one source for all-natural, organic and cruelty-free cosmetics.  This commitment provides customers a refreshing and liberating way to shop for cosmetics.  To invest in skincare and makeup that will give you a healthy, gorgeous glow, not just on the outside, but also from within, is something to really rave about and feel GREAT about!  So, for starters, I’m going to rave about a brand called RMS Beauty.  If you haven’t heard of it, it was founded by legendary makeup artist, Rose-Marie Swift, who has been in the beauty industry for 20 years, working with countless celebrities and serving as lead artist for J.Crew.  That dewy, minimally made-up look that we’ve come to know and love about J.Crew models is the result of Swift’s innovative RMS products.  RMS was created after Swift’s encounter with health issues due to high toxin levels found in her blood stream, simply from working around unhealthy cosmetics for years.  This ignited her passion for women to have the right to feel beautiful and remain healthy.  RMS Beauty was born and now the coveted and highly-celebrated brand is making headlines in magazines and beauty blogs, world-wide. Swift’s invention has been taking the organic beauty industry by storm (and for good reason).

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Last week, I had the pleasure of removing all of my makeup in Ooh! Beautiful and experiment with this line by applying a fresh face, using only RMS.  At first, I’ll admit that I was a bit concerned by the emollient texture of these products, given that I have very oily skin (especially in Charleston’s humidity).  I wanted to really see how these products would wear, so I forfeited priming my skin and immediately began applying their “Un” Cover-up in 00, the lightest shade (yes, I have very fair skin).  Immediately, I noticed that it concealed redness and other blemishes very well.  I applied this concealing base like a concealer and then blended the edges with my fingers (you can also use a small foundation brush) until I felt like the tone of my skin was well balanced. I even put this under my eyes and it didn’t crease!  I used their Buriti Bronzer, second, to give my skin a warm glow. I tapped it onto my temples and lightly down around my cheeks, nose and chin.  It felt like I could really contour with this as well bronze!  Starting on my eyes, I took their Cream Eye Polish in Lunar and tapped a little onto the brow bone and the inner/outer corners of my eyes.  Next, I selected their Cream Eye Polish in Seduce for my lower lid, swiping it on with my finger and working the product into the crease for added definition.  I loved how this light bronze shade made my eyes pop.  This would be a great go-to shadow for everyday.  I lined my eye with a tiny, flat liner brush and the Cream Eye Polish in Karma.  This rich, dark brown/black shade is great for all skin tones.  It’s just a wonderful, neutral liner.  I was amazed that it didn’t crease back onto my lids!  I chose their infamous Lip2Cheek in Promise for cheeks and lips.  Some multi-use products aren’t truly multi-use, but I found the consistency and pigment of this item to really serve as such!  Promise is a beautiful, deep coral shade with a gold metallic sheen — nothing too shimmery once applied to the skin.  I gently rubbed this right onto the apples of my cheeks and tapped it on my lips, and I was immediately impressed with the color payoff!  This brand really knows color that flatters!  To complete the healthy glow that RMS Beauty gives you, I applied their Living Luminizer on places where the light would normally hit — the top of my cheek bones, above my brows (this could also be dabbed onto the corners of the eye and brow bone), and on the bow of my lip.  I now know why I see this product featured all over as a must-have!  It was one of the most beautiful and subtle highlighters I had ever used.  Lastly, I dusted their “Un” Powder on my t-zone, only. Again, I didn’t want to load up on primers and powders because I wanted to truly see the line’s wearability on my skin.  Once finished, I snapped a pic in natural light.

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Three hours later, while driving home, the makeup still seemed freshly-applied. Even later into the evening, I was amazed with how the shades remained true.  I’m an RMS fan without a doubt and believe that these products are truly suitable for all skin types!  Not only are they super easy to use (finger or brush), but they’re extremely portable and good for your skin!  That really is something to rave about and above all, check out!  Naturally, RMS Beauty can be found at Ooh! Beautiful.  Stop in and try it for yourself … I promise you won’t be disappointed.


Katie Shayda

Meet Katie and try out the new RMS color line this Thursday at Celadon!


Pretty in Pink – A Summer Wedding

Posted on: July 29th, 2014 by admin

Ashley and Mark

We could not have asked for a better couple to work along side as we planned their wedding day. This day was truly a great celebration of two people who love life and each other. This was profoundly displayed through touches of dasies, fun mixed seating and two people that were very deserving.
Using whimsical florals, succulents displayed in terrariums, and pops of colors we were able to achieve an elegant atmosphere while mixing in the personalities of Ashley, who works for Patagonia, and her down-to-earth new hubby.
Ashley and Mark are very outdoorsy and have a totally unique style, but when it came to wedding design the couple was wide open. We presented Ashley with an overall proposal together for her based off of her inspiration boards and the part that Ashley enjoyed most was the mix and match ceremony seating. The fun part of this was that we flipped the chairs to the reception afterwards to create an overall eclectic vibe.
Lowndes Grove is a very popular spot and for good reason! Overlooking the marshes of Charleston it has a sprawling landscape so it can accommodate a large guest count. It offers tons of options for ceremony sites, and the house is simply to die for!
The ever popular sparkler send off culminated in a horse and carriage getaway

Stars at Middleton – Photos by Clay Austin

Posted on: July 18th, 2014 by admin


Middleton Place is one of the most beautiful venues in Charleston, complete with a garden, waterfront views, a quaint little inn, and roaming peacocks. We were thrilled to work with Charleston Weddings Magazine and the ladies of Tusk Events.


Sperry has truly outdone themselves with this gorgeous teepee. the inside is just as beautiful as the outside and we filled with florals from Out of the Garden.


The seamless white canvas of the teepee proves to be the perfect backdrop for fun jewel tones and gold accents that filled the space.








Gorgeous photos courtesy of Clay Austin Photography!

GLUE STICK GIRLS – Creating a Visual Journal by Nikki Hardin

Posted on: July 11th, 2014 by admin


If you travel this summer, smart phones make it easy to document every cathedral, museum, scenic outlook, beach, roller coaster and meal along the way. I have so many photos from various trips I’ve taken over the years that I recently went through my computer and deleted the bad, the mediocre and the duplicates. After all, how many shots of a plane wing do I really need?


There’s another way to capture journeys that is really my favorite. It involves an old-school blank book, some colored pens or pencils, a glue stick and your imagination. Keeping a visual journal that relies on words, drawings, photos and ephemera can be incredibly rich and might even end up being a family keepsake some day.

Artist/photographer/diarist Peter Beard is the master of the visual journal. In my mind, all others are mere scrapbooks. A replica of some of his pages was finally published in a huge volume that I spent way too much money on. No regrets, though. I keep it with my art supplies on my kitchen table for inspiration. Beard has a unique vision that I could never hope to achieve, but his work is nudging me to step up my efforts. My own pages are pretty mundane in comparison, but my project for the summer is to expand my vision and lose my creative inhibitions.


There are no rules for a visual journal. You could keep an ongoing one of your life like Peter Beard does, but since it’s summer, it’s also the perfect time for a travel journal. You can devote it to one big adventure or record the smaller day or weekend trips you take. Here are a few examples I found online:





Any kind of blank book will work, although I’m partial to the 8 ½” by 11” hardcover AA Alternative sketch books (you can find them online or in art supply stores), but if you’re traveling, you’ll want something smaller like a Moleskine. You can even find one small enough to tuck in a pocket so you can write or draw in it on the fly.


Put your supplies (glue sticks, scissors, washi tape, a small travel watercolor set, colored pencils, pens, etc) in a plastic envelope for easy packing. Decorate the cover with a piece of art or a photo, give it a title and get started. The sky’s the limit in terms of materials, but things you could use include:

Fragments of maps

Theater programs




Ticket stubs


Subway tickets


Magazine clippings

Doodles or drawings (Yes, you can draw! We all drew and colored as kids, so don’t let your adult ego or fear of failure muzzle your inner child.)

I love cramming my books with all kinds of oddments like this example.


There’s something viscerally satisfying about having a big fat record of your days, and the process of working with physical materials after too much time in digital world returns me to childhood. I love to sit in a bar or outdoor café and draw and write while I watch the world go by. Later, I can go back and embellish the pages with any materials I’ve magpied along the way. It’s the next best thing to being in kindergarten again. Let’s go, Gluestick Girls!

Nikki Hardin is the founder of skirt! Magazine and co-founder of Project XX South Carolina. She blogs at Follow her on Facebook.

Styled Shoot with Lauren M. Creative

Posted on: July 2nd, 2014 by admin

Dance the night away!


We had so much fun working with Lauren of LMC at the Charleston Distilling Company for a 1920′s styled shoot. The Distilling Co. is the latest distillery to hit Charleston and inside it is glorious! The natural pine walls and simple concrete floors are accented by the statuesque metallic distillers making this the perfect downtown venue on King Street for an intimate reception.



The table is covered with specialty linens to give a luxurious pop against the rustic, reclaimed wood walls. Each place setting carefully placed with china from Polished!


Vintage vanities with antique mirrors make the perfect table marker and paired with mercury glass votives create a roaring 20′s paradise.


 Vintage glass decanters with gold stripping add are a luxe addition and compliment the prohibition vibes.


Let there be light!

Overhead hangs a glamorous cube crystal chandelier.




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Her bouquet is filled with peonies, garden roses, stock, hellebores, viburnum, anemones, sweet pea, delphinium, snowberries, pieris japonica, and rice flower.


Let’s toast!


This vintage mirror makes the perfect menu display! It’s also a great place to share the wedding hashtag with your guests or give directions to the ceremony at an outdoor wedding.




 Let’s Get Glam!


Our talented resident make up artist, Devon, worked her magic for this photo shoot with all natural and organic makeup.

She used Glow Time BB cream #3 as foundation on top of Smooth Affair primer and brightener,
Smoky Grey eye shadow with Onyx Mystikol powdered eyeliner, and Black Ice Longest Lash mascara form Jane Iredale.
Vapour Aura Multi-Use in Crush on her cheeks.
Femme Fatale lipstick by Ilia for a pop of color.


Gown and shoes from Swoon.

Photography by Reese Moore! 

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