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Allure Magazine’s 2014 Beauty Blogger Awards Officially Kicks Off Today!

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How appropriate it is that I’m getting ready to head back to New York as I share this news! I just heard from my pals over at Allure that the 2014 Allure Beauty Blogger Awards is officially in full swing! If any of you missed the memo (which, let’s get real, is probably not the case), I participated in the 2013 Allure Beauty Blogger Awards last year. I ended up earning the “Most Buzzworthy” title as well as placing in the top three overall. I had the time of my life in New York with Cara and Tati during our photo shoot for the October issue of Allure. I might have mentioned the contest once or twice if you would like a recap of the whole experience. ;)

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If you would like to give it a shot and see if you have what it takes to be Allure Magazine’s 2014 Beauty Blogger of the Year – the time is now! They’ve updated the eligibility requirements as well. Last year, bloggers who did sponsored posts could not enter. This year, you can! Of course, you have to stick to the FTC guidelines and be transparent with your readers regarding the financial relationships you have with companies/products. But you already knew that, right? (See the official rules for all eligibility information.)

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In addition to getting lots of career-boosting exposure during the five-week contest itself, one grand-prize winner will receive a trip to New York City, an invite to the annual Best of Beauty party, backstage access to a fashion show, a tour of Revlon HQ to preview new products, a special Allure 2014 Blogger of the Year logo to place on your own website, and a photo shoot—complete with professional styling—for a story that will run in the October 2014 issue of Allure.

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I will forever hold Allure and the Beauty Blogger Awards in my heart. The exposure from this contest has done miraculous things for my blogging career and it really was one of the best experiences I’ve ever had. So, I encourage my fellow beauty bloggers to get out there and enter! It’ll be fun, trust me. Visit allure.com/go/beauty-blogger to enter until 11:59 p.m. ET on February 25. Be sure to let me know if you enter so I can cheer you on! :)

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Behind the Scenes: My Allure Magazine Beauty Blogger Awards Photo Shoot

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True confession: I have daydreamed about walking into the Conde Nast building since I was the editor-in-chief of my high school yearbook. So, to say that visiting the Allure offices was exciting for me would be a massive understatement.

Since those days I’ve often second guessed my career path… I began on the journalism route then took a severe left turn when I embarked on my journey into the beauty industry… before ultimately ending up trying to make a name for myself in a field that’s a strange hybrid of both.

It was when I was inside the elevator at 4 Times Square, on my way up to the photo studio for my shoot, that it clicked. That every decision I have made, traditional or not, has lead me to this moment. And this moment is awesome.

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The studio was incredible – almost as incredible as the rows of designer shoes awaiting my freshly pedicured feet. Cara, Tati (who are both just as sweet and beautiful as they are on their blogs, btw!) and I were whisked into a rotation of fashion fittings, manicures, makeup sessions, and hair styling.

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It’s no secret that I am not a sample size… so I was a little nervous about how they were planning to style my wardrobe. Then I laid eyes on my rack of killer dresses from Diane von Furstenberg, Zac Posen, Jason Wu, and Michael Kors and those fears quickly faded! I ended up wearing a beautiful black, curve-friendly Diane von Furstenberg dress (top left in the style board photo) and…wait for it… a pair of electric blue Manolo Blahniks. Hello, lover!

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I am determined to own these heels one day. And by one day, I mean when the Manolo Blahnik Fall 2013 Collection hits stores in September. Can you start a Kickstarter campaign for shoes? Is that a thing?

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Nail expert (and longtime Marc Jacobs manicurist) Elisa Ferri toned down my bright summer nails to create a more season appropriate look for the fall issue. She used Chanel Le Vernis Nail Colour in Beige. It’s a gorgeous neutral tone with a subtle iridescent shine. I never want to take it off.

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I was a bit nervous about having my makeup done because I’m so particular about how I do it. Well, that worrying was completely unnecessary because brilliant artist Junko Kioka was the mastermind behind my makeup that day. I was furiously taking notes on the products she was using… and will most definitely add some of them to my own kit soon (Kett Fix Crème makeup, Estee Lauder DoubleWear, and Laura Mercier Secret Camouflage to name a few). I don’t think I’ve ever felt more beautiful!

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The amazing DJ Quintero upped the glam factor even more and gave me some major Veronica Lake meets Jessica Rabbit hair. He set it with Serge Normant Meta Luxe Hair Spray. My hair was touchable and soft, but the style stayed perfectly intact. That stuff is miraculous!

Each of us had our own set in the studio, brilliantly crafted by Allure Fashion Editor J rod Lacks and photographer Jason McDonald. I won’t spoil too much detail on that – you’ll have to buy the October issue of Allure to see the finished product!

Here are some more backstage highlights from the shoot:

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After our whirlwind photo shoot, we embarked on a tour of the Allure offices, complete with a stop at the beauty mecca that is the Allure beauty closet (more on that later). Here’s a peek at my stash:

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As if the day couldn’t get any better, we were invited to meet and chat with editor-in-chief (and author of Allure: Confessions of a Beauty Editor) Linda Wells.

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It. Was. Amazing.

Thank you again to everyone reading this for all of your support during the contest and beyond. I would not have been able to experience this memorable day if it weren’t for you!

I’m back in Florida for now… but I’m definitely stuck in a New York state of mind. Stay tuned for more (yes, more!) on my Allure experience… including my top ten picks from the Allure beauty closet!

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It’s official! I’m Allure Magazine’s Most Buzzworthy Blogger of the Year!

Ok, so I know in my last post I said I’d be happy whether I earned a fancy title or not… but guess what?

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I earned two fancy titles!! Who even knew that could happen?! I’ve been floating since noon on Tuesday when Allure magazine published the official Beauty Blogger Awards “Meet the Winners” page. When the clock struck 12 and I saw my face pop up there twice I almost fell out of my chair! I am officially the Most Buzzworthy Blogger of the Year… and I also claimed a runner-up spot for the overall contest. Not too shabby! I’m so so thankful to all of you out there who helped get me to this point. I couldn’t have done it without you!

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The fiercest of them all Mally Roncal said she thinks I’m fun and the adorably awesome Coca Rocha said she related to my hangover beauty solutions entry. Whhhaaat?!

My head is still spinning from the whole thing. Next on the agenda of my whirlwind Allure experience is a trip to New York for the official photoshoot sometime within the next few weeks. The photos from that shoot, along with a feature story on us winners will appear in the October 2013 issue of Allure. Don’t worry, I’ll remind you to pick up a copy before then! ;)

Thank you all again for reading, liking, sharing, tweeting, and for your general awesomeness throughout the past five weeks. I feel like such a huge chapter is closing, but an even bigger one is just beginning. Stay tuned to Martinis and Mascara for lots more news, reviews, and advice – served to you straight up! Cheers!!martini

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Voting for the Allure Beauty Blogger Awards officially closes at noon today!

bbaToday marks the closing of the final round of the 2013 Allure Beauty Blogger Awards. These five weeks have been incredible. This has been without a doubt, one of the busiest, craziest, happiest, most productive time periods of my life.

I know I sound like a broken record at this point, but I really can’t put into words exactly how much it means to me that my readers, coworkers, family, friends, and some people who don’t even know me, have banded together to create such a support system for me. It’s still blowing my mind that so many of you put yourselves out there, week after week, asking for votes on my behalf! The amount of people pulling for me, sharing the voting links, and tweeting away over the last five weeks is just unbelievable. I was voted “Most Buzzworthy” for four weeks in a row… and I could not have done that without you guys!

I really poured my heart into these contest entries and I’m so glad that I made it through every elimination so I could share all five of the challenges with you. I am so honored to have made it to the final four, but honestly, I feel like I won when I got that first call from Allure. This contest has been an incredibly validating experience. I can’t even describe how good it feels to know that the experts at the leading beauty magazine in the country think that I create quality content. So, no matter what the final verdict is, I’ll be happy whether I earn a fancy title or not.

Onward and upward! ;)

Here’s what happens now…

  • At noon today, the voting officially ends, and I stop begging for votes and cluttering your Facebook/Twitter feeds.
  • I pretend I’m not freaking out until Tuesday at noon when the Beauty Blogger of the Year, two runner-ups, and Most Buzzworthy Blogger titles are announced.
  • Cocktails for all of us. Lots of ‘em!

 [P.S. For the last time (::sniff::), don't forget to vote for me, Katie McBroom, to help me become Allure Magazine's Beauty Blogger of the Year! Voting for the 2013 Allure Beauty Blogger Awards closes today at noon. It would mean the world to me if you could take a minute to do this! Remember, by voting for me you become eligible to win awesome prizes like a trip for two to Hawaii!]

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I made it to the final round of Allure Magazine’s Beauty Blogger Awards!

allureweek22I am so beyond thrilled to announce that I avoided elimination again… and I’m one of the four remaining bloggers competing in the fifth and final round of the Beauty Blogger Awards! Not only that… but I was voted “Most Buzzworthy” for the fourth consecutive week! Wow!

The new challenge posted this morning was our $50 makeup challenge. Allure sent us each a $50 AmEx Gift Card and told us to hit up a drugstore and get creative! I took mine to Target and created a look inspired by Adele’s Grammy look. I had an absolute blast with this and I hope you all enjoy it too!

This time next week, Allure will reveal the Beauty Blogger of the Year, as well as two runner ups and the overall “Most Buzzworthy” winner. Until then, I need you guys to do what you do best… vote, like, and tweet! You can vote every day this week until voting closes at noon on Friday. Thank you so very much for your continuous love and support! I’m so excited!

[P.S. Don't forget to vote for me, Katie McBroom, to help me become Allure Magazine's Beauty Blogger of the Year! You can vote every day this week (until Friday before noon). We are in the fifth and final round of the contest, so I can use your help now more than ever! It would mean the world to me if you could take a minute to do this! Remember, by voting for me you become eligible to win awesome prizes like a trip for two to Hawaii!]

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I’m still in the running for Allure’s Beauty Blogger of the Year!

I can’t believe it! The fourth round of Allure’s hunt for the Beauty Blogger of the Year is here… and I’m still in! Not only that… but I was also named “Most Buzzworthy” for the third consecutive week! Woo-hoo!

It’s down to six of us now and the competition is fierce. These bloggers are awesome, so I feel very fortunate to be included in this group! In the new challenge, I hit the streets of my hometown in sunny South Florida to find a makeover candidate and create a little beauty at the beach! I created a beachy bronze look for her and detailed the steps I took to create that golden glow.

Vote, tweet, like, and share my new challenge entry every day this week (before noon on Friday) to help get me to the end! I could use your help now more than ever to get me through to the final round. I owe you all martinis when this is all over! In the meantime, enjoy a Bumble Bee Shot. Bzzz! ;) bumblebee2

The Bumble Bee

1 oz Three Olives Vanilla Vodka

Splash of Drambuie

Mix ingredients into a shaker filled with ice. Strain into shot glass.

[P.S. Don't forget to vote for me, Katie McBroom, to help me become Allure Magazine's Beauty Blogger of the Year! You can vote every weekday. Each week a new challenge will be posted on Monday at 9 a.m. It would mean the world to me if you could take a minute to do this! Remember, by voting for me you become eligible to win awesome prizes like a trip for two to Hawaii!]

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I was voted Buzzworthiest of the week in the Allure Beauty Blogger Awards!

buzzworthyfirstchallenge1Thanks to the votes, likes, tweets, and shares from all of you guys, Allure Magazine has dubbed me the Most Buzzworthy of the first challenge! My “My Beauty Obsession” challenge entry from the first week of the contest was the most viral and I couldn’t be more thrilled about that. Thank you so much to all of you who made this possible – please keep it coming! I’m super excited about being the Buzzworthiest for the first week, but this is still anybody’s game. Your continued support is appreciated now more than ever… especially since I took a real creativity gamble in the new challenge!Revlon Box

Round two of the contest began this morning with The Revlon Beauty Box Challenge. The fine folks at Revlon and Allure sent us a giant box of Revlon products and we were instructed to get creative and use our favorites to use in a video – using only the products they sent us in the box.

In my entry, I explain how to do a springtime smoky eye, and how to punch it up with a quick technique for achieving the two-toned ombre lip look. I did it a little unconventionally… so here’s hoping the judges think it’s creative and not too chongalicious! Click here to see what I mean. And don’t forget to vote while you’re there! Thanks again so much. Let’s keep this buzz going!! Bzzz…

[P.S. Don't forget to vote for me, Katie McBroom, to help me become Allure Magazine's Beauty Blogger of the Year! You can vote every weekday. Each week a new challenge will be posted on Monday at 9 a.m. It would mean the world to me if you could take a minute to do this! Remember, by voting for me you become eligible to win awesome prizes like a trip for two to Hawaii!]

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