Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Jeffre Scott + Goldfaden MD = reader giveaways

There’s a special panache that comes with being the one and only.

And starting next week, Charlotte’s Jeffre Scott Apothecary will be the first and only store in the Carolinas to offer products from the Goldfaden MD skincare line.

Scott’s Providence Road store has specialized in elite skincare and cosmetics since it opened in 2006. Prior to owning his shop in Charlotte, Scott’s resume included being a national makeup artist for Chanel and a career in NYC that ranged from buying for Barney’s New York to starting his own retail product management firm.

Jeffre Scott Apothecary will be the first store in the Carolinas to offer Goldfaden skincare.

Needless to say, Scott has stringent criteria for the specialty items that stock his shelves. “We don’t have a lot, but what we have works.”

Goldfaden MD’s tag line of “Physician Strength, Naturally Inspired” hints at a number of attributes: Paraben- and petro-chemical free, 100 -percent vegetarian with no animal testing, hypo-allergenic, etc.
The big selling point: It’s the first natural skincare line (developed by a dermatologist) with physician strength results, according to brand officials. Products retail from $35 to $115.

Since hitting the market in October 2012, Goldfaden MD’s products have been named as faves by a range of magazines, from Self and Harper’s Bazaar UK to Real Simple and Marie Claire.

A lot of promotional material comes through the newsroom, but Scott receives even more product pitches from possible beauty vendors. So I asked Scott what made him want to offer Florida-based Goldfaden products at his store.

“My philosophy is about taking time to find a fit for (the Charlotte) market,” he said. Any potential products that pique his interest must also get a thumbs-up from his staffers and a few trusted clients, he said.

Goldfaden reps also know their core skincare customers: women who are 30-plus, naturally -focused, interested in natural ingredients (but don’t want to compromise efficacy levels or potency), who also want rapid, if not immediate, results.

“She’s the affluent mom who eats healthy, exercises, is fashion/beauty/brand conscious and wants to use products that are both effective and that she feels good about using,” brand reps said.

Scott prides himself on providing customers with an experience: No high-pressure sales tactics, plenty of education about possible products and readily available samples. “So they can walk away and feel confident in their purchase,” he said. “We’ve built that trust with the customer … and (value) cultivating a long-term customer rather than an immediate sale.”

After nearly a year of talks with the company and test runs by some of Scott’s most trusted, Goldfaden MD got rave reviews and the green light for his store.

 “It’s almost like a spa/doctor treatment at home … It’s results-driven,” Scott said, noting locals gave it five stars for component integrity and simplicity.

And Goldfaden reps felt Scott was a perfect fit for their first foray into the Carolinas. “We love Jeffre … It is a luxury niche, knowledgeable apothecary focusing on education and client service.”

It’s one thing for a business owner to talk up their newest product in a sales pitch and entirely another to be so confident you’re offering some for free. Sounds like giveaway time...

Scott provided two new, full-sized Goldfaden MD products: “Bright Eyes” dark circle radiance concentrate ($52 value) and “Wake Up Call” overnight regenerative facial treatment ($80 value).

Want to win?

Before Monday, send me an email with "Goldfaden" in the subject line. Please include which product you'd like to win, the Goldfaden MD attribute you're most excited about, your full name, mailing address and daytime phone number.

Just remember: If you win, you've got to report back with your results. (Bonus point to those who chronicle through photos.)

Want even more?

Jeffre Scott Apothecary will host a two-day event March 14-15 with Lauren Wolk Goldfaden - daughter-in-law of brand founder Dr. Goldfaden - and Lisa Goldfaden, Dr. Goldfaden's daughter.

This will be one of the first events in the store's spring beauty event calendar, featuring a variety of brand creators and experts nearly every weekend from March 8-April 24.

All events have limited availability and require a $75 RSVP (to be applied towards any purchase.) Details and to register: 704-339-0010;

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Dare to bare on social media?

Are you brave enough to bare it all? On the Internet, on a Monday morning, no less?

Calm down, I'm talking about the upcoming makeup-free Monday.

As a nod to National Eating Disorders Awareness Week (Feb. 23-March 1), The Renfrew Center Foundation is sponsoring its third annual “Barefaced & Beautiful, Without & Within” campaign, challenging women nationwide to go without makeup on Monday and share their photos online.

The Renfrew Center of North Carolina – a treatment facility for eating disorders located in SouthPark – opened in 2007 and is part of Renfrew’s 13-facility network across 11 states.

“From ‘paparazzi’ friends to selfies, we’re obsessed with taking and posting photos on social media, yet we feel pressured to alter those images to what we think we should look like rather than who we really are,” said Paula Edwards-Gayfield, the local site director.

The goal for the campaign and these untouched snapshots is to initiate discussions about healthy body image and inner beauty, a break from the unrealistic expectations (and photo editing) found so commonly online.

“Positive self-esteem and body image is possible, even in the face of today’s cultural pressures that put women at risk for eating disorders and other destructive behaviors,” Edwards-Gayfield said.

Last month, Harris Interactive performed an online survey of more than 1,700 U.S. adults who have some type of social media account, 85 percent of whom have posted photos of themselves online.

The survey – done on behalf of the Renfrew Center Foundation – found that 50 percent of respondents admitted to doctoring their pics before posting.

Yes, cropping and red-eye removal are included in the definition of editing. But the survey found that 1 in 8 respondents tinkered with their pictures because they’re not happy with how they look in general, while 1 in 6 people said they edited to appear thinner.

Another 15 percent of respondents “enhanced” their looks by removing blemishes, while another 15 percent reportedly added color to look “less pale.”

The survey isn’t meant to draw any correlation between social media usage and eating disorders, but rather to serve as a reminder that so much of what appears online has been manipulated.

“Eating disorders are a complex combination of conditions involving biological, psychological and cultural factors unique to each individual. They don’t just happen to affluent adolescent girls, and they aren’t always about getting thin,” Edwards-Gayfield said.

Show your face

Want to participate on Monday? Tweet your makeup free mugs with the hashtag #barefacedbeauty and/or change your Facebook profile picture to one of your natural self.

Refreshing change

Cosmopolitan put a slideshow online actually praising celebs for going public without makeup. It's a nice detour from the usual tabloid-blasting celebs get...

To help promo the recent release of her "Body Book," Cameron Diaz posts sans makeup.

(I love and adore Lorde for posting with zit cream on. That's real life.)

Tata Harper spring skin event

Tata Harper - the 100-percent natural and organic luxury skincare line - will have a consultant available at Woo Skincare and Cosmetics Thursday for a mini-facial event.

From 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., those who come in can get an introduction and a chance to sample various products in the line, all of which are handmade in Vermont. Call ahead to schedule: 704-333-0443.

Woo Skincare and Cosmetics is located at 2900A Selwyn Ave.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

'A Queen and Her Crown: A Celebration of Natural Hair'

As part of an events series meant to raise awareness of African-American Heritage Month, UNC Charlotte’s Multicultural Resource Center is hosting a photo exhibit titled “A Queen and Her Crown: A Celebration of Natural Hair” through Feb. 28.

Rashona Sharpless, a second-year graduate assistant at the center, put the exhibit together and said the goal is to show the beauty of natural hair, and how perceptions of it have changed.

“There is a bit of a stigma to having natural hair and there was a time that a black woman wearing her natural hair was not seen as professional,” she said.

“Some of the older norms that are fading, but still present today, are that natural hair is unprofessional or dirty. There have been several stories in the media about young black girls being threatened with expulsion for wearing their hair natural,” Sharpless said.

The exhibit includes 20 photos, and the models are students, faculty and staff at UNCC, Sharpless said. The pictures were taken by Charlotte-based photography company Project Noir.

“We included faculty and staff to show that in the professional world you don’t have to change your hair if you don’t want to,” Sharpless said.

The free exhibit is outside the Multicultural Resource Center on the second floor rotunda of the Student Union, located on Craver Road. “A Queen and Her Crown: A Celebration of Natural Hair” is open for viewing 7 a.m.-1 a.m. weekdays and 9 a.m.-1 a.m. on the weekends.

Free parking is available on the Student Union parking deck;

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Scarves, snow boots and Rodarte's 'Star Wars' dresses

This #snowpocalypse isn't expected to be nearly as cold as the last.

But an official "winter storm warning" goes into effect at 6 p.m., so it seems a festive occasion to consider layering up, snow gear, etc.

Daily Worth has put together eight shop-able slides on what to wear when you want warmth without "frump."

Personally, I can't be without some type of scarf at all times, so extra love for's "Scarf Knot Library." (It's been around on Pinterest for ages, but this seems the perfect time to break out a refresher on the double-knot or the double-wrap neck knot.)

Who needs bread and milk?

And I'm probably more excited than necessary about finally getting a true test of the new snow boots.

To be fair, I spent more than a year debating these boots. I read a review - around Christmas 2012 - that these were the best boots for winter travel: waterproof, warm and super lightweight in a suitcase.

I've still got family in Colorado, Kansas, Minnesota and Wisconsin, all places that see plenty of snow. So it seemed prudent (at some point) to get a pair of travel-friendly boots.

There's a cozy inner-liner (see the plaid bits) that slips in and out of the boot and the outer boot casing can fold in half/flat. So I put them on my Amazon wish list and got emails about price fluctuations for months.

I think it might have been August or September, but at one point they were nearly half the price of when I'd started eyeballing them. That was finally permission to purchase.
Oh, Teva, you're about so much more than just sandals.
During the year's previous "snow event," the parking lot of my apartment complex was pure treachery. It was hardly an inch of snow, but the feet stayed warm, dry and the tread kept me from falling on my face.

We'll see how they hold up to the predicted 6.5 inches we're allegedly in for.

And if the impending winter weather hasn't made Charlotte feel enough like an alternate universe for you, check out the Star Wars dresses that Rodarte had on the runway today at #NWFW, courtesy of (British) Vogue.

Yes to the Death Star
Be safe and stay warm!

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Front Row Charlotte and 'Go Red' sales

If you enjoy shopping for a cause, several upcoming events might be right up your alley...

Front Row Charlotte

Tickets for the March 5 show go on sale around 7 a.m. Thursday morning, and co-founder Erica Hanks said  they move fast.

What exactly is Front Row Charlotte? Hanks describes them as "intimate" fashion shows that feature five local boutiquess, plus two local jewelry designers. A runway show will feature the best each store has to offer for the season, and each hosts a pop-up store immediately after, so you can shop for everything seen during the show.

This season's boutique lineup will include Coral, Coplon's, Poole Shop, Our Place and Social Dress Shop, as well as  Erin McDermott jewelry and Melvin jewelry, Hanks said. Tickets are $50, the event will start at 7 p.m. March 5 at Center Stage in NoDa and will feature goodies from FuManChu Cup Cakes.

Hanks started Front Row Charlotte two seasons ago with Joey Hewell. Both wear a number of hats - Hanks is a wardrobe stylist, Hewell the owner of J. Studio Salon - and both are considered locally to be fashion authorities.

"It's been fun to see how excited Charlotte is for this concept, I started it and didn't think anyone would show up," she said with a laugh.

"Front Row is my first ever atempt at organizing anything besides a birthday party. I just wanted to do a fun event my girlfriends would want to go to, that I would want to go to."

And Front Row Charlotte has had no trouble filling the seats, all of which happen to literally be on the front row. "There's no second or third row, there's no standing," Hanks said. "Want people to feel special, like they are VIPs, and for people to be able to see the cloths, take photos and have a really cool experience."

All proceeds from ticket sales go to a local nonprofit or charity, Hanks said, adding the giving back is vitally important to her and Hewell. This season's beneficiary will be Baby Bundles, which provides baby essentials to new moms in financial need. "It's something we feel strongly about, we love giving back and to (organizations that ) are small and could use the funds."

Front Row Charlotte will put the Eventbrite ticket link out on their Facebook and Twitter accounts once it goes live Thursday morning.

Macy’s “Go Red” Total Makeover

Macy’s has partnered with the American Heart Association to help promote the first Friday of each February as national “Go Red For Women” day, to raise awareness about women's heart disease.

Locally, Macy’s SouthPark (4400 Sharon Road) will host its “Go Red” Total Makeover passport event 1-3 p.m. Saturday. Shoppers can purchase an iconic “Red Dress” pin for $2, which will earn them 20 percent off most regular, sale and clearance items and 15 percent off jewelry, watches and some home items.

In addition to giveaways, a number of interactive stations will be located around the store, offering tips on heart health. A certified nutritionist will discuss heart-healthy eating and specific nutrition questions; Estee Lauder, Lancome and Clinique will provide free makeup consultations; demonstrations of simple yoga stretches and blood pressure screenings will be featured and Medic will provide hands-only demonstrations of the newest recommendations for CPR, among others.

Those who visit each station and complete their passport will be entered to win a $250 Macy’s gift card. The Go Red Total Makeover winner, Terri DeBoo, will receive a $500 Macy’s gift card, makeover and wardrobe fitting. She was selected as the promotion winner after losing more than 100 pounds to become heart-healthy.

More details from the American Heart Association:; 704-417-5756,