Introducing (drum roll, please!) ... Mandy, the Baroness of Beauty! Mandy is pictured above with QVC host, Antonella (I just love her!!!)
Since Mandy loves all things beauty, road trips, and the Q, it's no surprise that she's a Beauty Bash veteran with several Bashes under her belt. She's also a super cool, fried-pickle-eating, Barry-Manilow-listening, caffeine-addicted chick! I'm trying to be happy for 16 1/2 pound bag of *free* goodies, but my smile is still through gritted teeth of jealousy. Sigh.
She has written up her whirlwind experience at this year's Beauty Bash on her blog, Just a Small Town Girl, complete with pictures:
The QVC Beauty Bash event for me is like all the great holidays wrapped up into one. Like a kid at Christmas, I get so overly excited for the event I don’t sleep for
I know the first question I am going to receive is “What is a Beauty Bash?” so let’s talk about that briefly. The Beauty Bash is like a huge trade show held at QVC Studio Park in West Chester, PA. Various beauty vendors who sell their products on QVC have the opportunity to set up a booth. When people attending the event arrive and get registered, they are given a tote bag and a passport, which is a list of all the vendors. Once inside, people go from vendor to vendor who generously give away some product or samples. People also have the opportunity to talk to the creators of the product – discussing anything from any questions they may have or about what new products will be making their way onto the air in the upcoming months. Some vendors also have areas set up where one can get their make up done, have a facial, or even get hair extensions! (Ken Paves giving one lucky woman some hair extensions.)
The second question that I have received is “When is the Beauty Bash coming my way?” The Beauty Bash takes place once a year and is sort like Mount Everest. If you want to climb the mountain, you have to go to the mountain; the mountain doesn’t come to you. Over the past few years, in speaking with different people, I’ve learned that people drive and fly in for this event from all parts of the country. QVC isn’t right in my back yard; every year we make the almost 6 hour one way drive. Trust me, it’s worth it!
The quality of event that QVC pulled off this past weekend was top notch, five stars. With huge crowds of people, typically tempers flare, there is a lot of anxiety, and it can take away from the overall experience. Personally for me there was none of that. The vendors were all extremely generous and so genuine. When you see them on television, of course they are going to be happy and passionate about their products. I can tell you first hand, that these people and their representatives believe in what they are doing with every fiber of their being. If you have a question about a product, chances are they will pull it from their arsenal of supplies to give you an exclusive look at it. When you were talking to a vendor, they made you feel like you had their undivided attention, which is very much appreciated. The vendors are just normal every day people like you and me. They talk with people who are waiting in line at the studio store or chat with someone on their way out of the building. They laugh with you while washing your hands together in the bathroom. The QVC employees were always smiling and helpful, many going way out of the way to assist us. They were more visible this year, helping to herd throngs of people this way or that way to make things run more smoothly. The other participants of the beauty bash were fun to be around. All around us we heard stories of what a bonding experience it is for mothers and daughters, sisters and aunts, and friends. It was so easy to look around and see everyone smiling, which isn’t always the case in a tough economic environment like the one we’re currently facing. Those smiles and attitudes were infectious. There was a palpable sense of excitement in the air.
I know what you’ve come here for today isn’t to read about the experience, you’ve come back to see what was in that big tote bag I showed you the other day. The “dumping of the bag” is much like being a child at Halloween. Remember when you were a kid who upon coming home after trick or treating sat in the middle of the floor and shook out your treat bag to see what goodies you had amassed? That’s exactly what I do when I return home from the beauty bash. Dump the tote bag, give it a few hard shakes to make sure I have every last thing out and then dig in. This year the tote bag weighted over 16 pounds and contained several hundreds of dollars worth of product. I received more this year than in Beauty Bashes past and can I just tell you, I had the incredible urge to just roll around on the floor on top of it all? I didn’t but I really, really wanted to. This picture doesn’t do the haul justice at all, but it was one of few that I could get that showed everything. Most of products we received were full size or very close to full size.
I’ll spare you a full list (if you’re interested let me know and I’ll send you one), but here are some of my favorite products in bullet form.
• Wen -- Six 6 ounce cleansing conditioner that are nothing short of glorious. Three lotions and body crèmes, and a soy candle. Can I just tell you he also had his three gorgeous lab dogs there? I also found out he uses the cleansing conditioners on their coats and they were oh so shiny! And you don’t even have to ask, yes, Sandy my golden retriever will be rocking a WEN cleansed coat after her next bath.
• Laura Geller – always one of my favorites was giving away full sized products of balance and brighten, balance and bronze, or blush and brighten each coming with a kabuki brush that works wonders. I love her reps and they are always one of my most favorite stops at the Beauty Bash. I want to be friends with all of them and the next time I am in NYC you better believe I will be stopping in at their studio. I want Laura Geller to be my new best friend.
• Philosophy – this organization is always incredibly generous, and this year was no exception. In addition to providing the opportunity have to facials and have your make up done by one of their artists they gave away huge foil bags containing Hope in a Jar, Purity foaming facial cleanser, a body wash in their new Unconditional Love scent, and a lip gloss that has me applying it every half hour because it smells so damn good.
• Ojon – these people provide hair care products that seriously make me want to shower three times a day for no other reason than to smell their products. They are mainly coco based that not only leave your hair super soft but your skin as well. This year we received full size “Rub Out” dry shampoo and a revitalizing hair mist.
• Tarte – this cosmetic company has learned from the past. Last year their sample sizes were ok but noting to get too excited about. This year however, I wanted to do cartwheels. They gave away a full sized conditioning lip stick, a full size foundation in your choice of shade, AND a compact with 8 lip glosses. To say I was happy was an understatement. It doesn’t hurt that all their products come in purple containers as well.
• T3 and Orlando Pita – this was their debut Beauty Bash and WOW, did they go all out. Their beautifully presented full sized products included volumizing dry shampoo, a heat seeking un-serum, a heat seeking volumizer, and a set of six professional combs. I cannot tell you how excited I am to try these out. As someone who uses heat styling products on an almost daily basis, my tresses are going to them them.
• Mally -- yet another company I always look forward to seeing was handing out metallic make up bags containing full size blush, eye shadow and lip gloss. I have actually been carrying this product in my everyday bag since Sunday. It’s a perfect size for touching up in the middle of day or heading out to meet friends for dinner after work.
As I said before, this is just a small sampling of the products that were tucked into my Beauty Bash tote bag. I have hair products that range from Ken Paves (hair dresser to Eva Longoria Parker and Jessica Simpson), Nick Chavez, and Fredrick Fekkai. There is eye shadow, mascara, and lipstick from companies like LORAC, Smashbox, Prescriptives, DuWop Clinique, and Bare Essentials. I have skin care products that help detoxify, reduce my pours, give me smooth hands and feet, cleanse, moisturize and prevent wrinkles from Dr. Denese, Diane Young, Peter Thomas Roth, DDF, and Doctor Perricone. There was so much, I have found something new and interesting every time I dump the tote out and sort through it all (which I can assure happens at least once a day for the first few weeks). I seriously have enough products to carry me well into next year and have no excuse for not looking beautiful at any given time.
Go check out Mandy's blog here and be sure to congratulate her on her new title! She wrote up another post about the looong wait and huge crowds waiting outside the Bash before it began and her comments sections are rockin'! Go Mandy!
Here's a video of Laura Gellar at the QVC Beauty Bash Dinner Cocktail (how swanky sounding!):
And Mally Roncal: