Category Archives: Uncategorized

EMPOWERED ENTREPRENURIAL WOMEN! MEET SUSAN J. ASHBROOK, AUTHOR ‘WILL WORK FOR SHOES”

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“WILL WORK FOR SHOES?” Well of course, I thought to myself, when my friend June Miller Richards, CEO & Founder of 6 Degrees of June, said “Harvey have you heard of Susan J. Ashbrook?” June is a fabulous BFF who arranged for me to be a celebrity panelist for an Angeleno Magazine event for Westfield Malls in Los Angeles along side the fabulous MS. Ashbrook.  I’ve known of Susan for several years as the visionary woman who is credited for really creating the RED CARPET protocols that we know and love today. Not that dresses weren’t worn by celebrities in the past, they were. But the modern  starlet phenomena that we see at every major celebrity event? That’s Susan! I must see the Red Carpet coverage on E! before all Hollywood award shows! Who’s wearing what by whom? It’s a Stylist’s dream!  Susan has penned her experience in the fabulous book “WILL WORK FOR SHOES”-THE BUSINESS BEHIND RED CARPET PRODUCT PLACEMENT. I love this book , not only for the dish, but for how Susan is helping others to create successful products and businesses.  Her book is a literal “HOW TO” get huge, powerful exposure for your brand by harnessing the star power of celebrities! I receive emails weekly from women who are launching products and services in search of advice about how to be successful. If you’re searching for ways to build your dream business,  you must get this book!

Susan shows you how to:

* Get your product on the body or in the hands of a celebrity. Love it!

* Execute a celebrity marketing campaign for next to nothing!

* Prepare for the attention and increased demand when you have a celebrity hit!

 

Anya Sarre, HEAD FASHION STYLIST, ENTERTAINMENT TONIGHT AND THE INSIDER said “Susan Ashbrook was the PIONeer in celebrity dressing! Susan’s look behind the curtain of celebrities and fashion makes her book a must read for everyone!”

It’s a fast fabulous read! http://www.amazon.com/Will-Work-Shoes-Business-Placement/dp/1608321444

Will I work for shoes? I know you already know the answer to that my pretties!

See you on the red carpet!

xo

Harvey

Sonja Perkins Non Profit gives a little glimmer to the girls who need it most! Meet Project Glimmer.

Happy Holidays girls! Of course this time of year I’ve been up to my freshly waxed eyebrows getting everyone ready for holiday festivities. You know…The right little black cocktail dress? False lashes? The perfect “IT “shoe? Faux fur accessories? Smoky eye or super frosted deliciousness? I was feeling a little fashionista overwhelmed when by chance I met a fabulous woman who reminded me of the true reason for the season. Giving.  Girls meet Sonja Perkins-Founder and Chairman of the super supportive girl nonprofit Project Glimmer. Now I’ve always known the magical powers the gift of beauty and jewelry bestow helping self-esteem and confidence. What’s on the inside of a girl is definitely the most important and Sonja believes that every girl is defined by here choices. When a girl feels valued on the outside, she feels worthy on the inside, and this makes all the difference in choosing her future.

And when a girl changes her future, she changes the world.  The seasoned and successful venture capitalist Sonja launched Project Glimmer in 2010 and gave away 800 gifts to teenage girls in need at Christmas, all through the San Francisco Firefighters toy program. Up to that point, there had been little if any gifts for teenage girls. Sonja has transformed this and is hoping to deliver 25,000 gifts this season to more than 30 organizations serving thousands of Bay area women and teenagers. The organization’s rule in giving is simply “Nothing can disappoint!”  Sonja said joyously “We only give things that delight! We want the recipient to know that she’s not alone in the world, even if the people around her are not treating her well.”  LOVE Sonja! In this season of giving, if you’d like to help Sonja and her incredible team, discover how you can help at Projectglimmer.org.  Okay girls, back to red carpet dressing for me! Hope Santa brings you all the joy and happiness you deserve!

xoxo

Harvey

 

 

 

THE MAKEUP DILEMMA – HOW MUCH IS TOO MUCH?

 

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Women & Makeup. This should probably be a title for one of my upcoming books. I’ve spent 35 years empowering women through co-created image with skincare, makeup, and fashion. It’s been a whirlwind of emotions helping each woman on her own personal journey. The question that still resonates after all these years is “How much makeup should a girl wear?” Looking at social media can leave you baffled!  If flip on YouTube makeup posts, you’ll perhaps think that everywoman wakes up to a 45 step regimen that includes contouring, highlighting and a host of tricks that use to be saved for special occasions, weddings, or a hot date. What’s the T? T means truth in drag queen slang, just in case you’ve not seen Rupaul’s Drag Race!

 

The T is that most women want to spend 5-10 minutes on their faces and look like they’re wearing no makeup. They hate the feel of foundation. They may say they love the color red, but always opt for the naked shades of everything. Now I’m not speaking about beauty bloggers or makeup junkies who love the ritual and also have a shopping addiction. I fall into that category. I’m talking REAL WOMEN. REAL FACES. REAL BEAUTY.  Here’s the truth. You only need a few steps to achieve an enhanced version of yourself. And that’s only if you care about your image. Some women don’t. Makeup is not every girls gig.  If beauty is a part of your life, here’s a must have list to start a real regimen:

 

  1. Cleanser/Makeup Remover – Clean skin is healthy skin. Cleansers are manufactured by skin type. Oily to very dry. If you wear makeup you NEED a remover before you wash your face. This is an important step in the life of your skin.
  2. Targeted Serum- Serums are excellent to get rid of any concerns you’re having. Blemishes, dark spots, fine lines. They contain higher percentages of active ingredients to alleviate your concern.
  3. Moisturize/SPF – Hydration and SPF protection are key to healthy, radiant skin. Even if you have oily skin you need hydration. SPF protection is not negotiable. Protect your face or suffer the consequences later. Add eye cream if you are concerned about dark circles or fine lines around the eyes.

 

How much makeup? It’s up to you! Here’s what I recommend for a naturally enhanced daytime face.

Choose products that are:

  • Hypoallergenic
  • Fragrance free
  • Paraben Free
  • Cruelty free

 

THE 4 MINUTE FACE:

  1. Primer – Fill in lines, disguise pores, add wear to any makeup. Can be worn without foundation to smooth the look of skin!
  2. Mousse Foundation – Weightless and concealing at the same time.
  3. Concealer/Eye & Lip Primer – Only if you have something you really need to hide. Dark under eye circles, blemish, or dark spots. Also if you’re going to wear eye shadow and lip color. Adds long wear with out looking dry. Apply after Mousse Foundation to cover completely.
  4. Invisible Blotting Powder – Talc free and skin refining that won’t settle into lines or become cakey mess by the end of the day.
  5. Bronzer – The healthiest skin looks sun kissed.
  6. Mascara – Duh!
  7. Lip Balm/Lip Color- Balm for plumping moisture that can be worn alone if you’re not a lip color girl. Add a gorgeous neutral lip color to enhance by day and perhaps a daring color for night? Why not live a little?

 

Believe it or not, these should take you between 7-10 minutes in the morning including your skincare. This will help you put out the BEST version of yourself out into the world. Like it or not, in this age of social media and selfies, image is not only important, it’s a part of who you are.

 

As Rupaul says, “We’re all born naked and the rest is drag!”

 

If beauty is part of your daily gig, check out my products & tutorials on harveyhelmsbeauty.com.

Please check out my new blog every week! I’ll be giving you commentary on all things beauty!

 

Xoxox

Harvey

The Beauty of Democracy

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It’s approximately 8:00 am. November 9th. My eyes suddenly open to stare at the white shade of my bedroom ceiling. The paint shade is called Swiss Coffee. If you’re looking for the perfect white, this is it.  As I sit up in my bed, I look around to see if I feel differently about the world. I notice that I feel emotionally hung over. I don’t drink alcohol so this is characterized by a state of……I don’t know what to call it. Confusion? My want for coffee overrides any other feelings and catapults me out from under my warm, protective covers.

After brewing my French dark roast and popping to the bathroom mirror to look at my skin, I realize that I knew this was coming for about a year. Not my filled pores and new zit from the stress, but the situation we find ourselves in as Americans this morning. Now, I’ve almost been called every name you can think of, but my favorite is American. I’m an American citizen. This morning I felt it more deeply than I have in years. Perhaps from how divisively the campaigns were conducted? The very fact that we can all say what we want whether someone else disagrees?  I have an extremely diverse group of friends that exemplify a broad range of emotional beliefs. They also vote on all sides of the issues. While one friend wants someone who’s not the same old government, with a strong business background, and others want the civil rights champions, who believe in equality for all. And others hate that the 2 main characters we have to choose from aren’t the right candidates to move us forward. It’s because of democracy that I have all these different kinds of friends. This morning reminds me of that lovely truth. Very few places in the world have this luxury that I sometimes take for granted.  Now don’t get me wrong! I know that things are far from being rosy today! I’m as opinionated as the next American. If you read my book BLUSH: THE UNBELIEVABLY ABSURD DIARY OF A GAY BEAUTY JUNKIE than you know I was bullied and almost murdered for being gay. I WILL NOT go back to a time where I’m treated as a second class citizen or tortured without consequences for the people who commit those hate crimes against humanity.  In the same breath, I also don’t want the same old government that’s ruining us financially. I’m an entrepreneur with a freshly launched beauty brand that wants a government that helps us build a solid future, with less big brother watching over us.  So now that the election is decided, we will move forward as we have after every election from the past. Hopefully working together like a serum & moisturizer do! Together they can get rid of any blemish or wrinkle! Separately they’ re not as strong or effective and take twice as long to work.

 

Sorry. You know I’m a beauty junkie and love a skincare analogy. It’s in my American Beauty DNA!

God Bless Us All!

Xo

Harvey

Harvey Writes a Book!

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Well Ladies, finally after 4 years of  blood, sweat, tears, boxes of Wheat Thins, and gobs of waterproof mascara, my book is finally launching! “blush: the unbelievably absurd diary of a gay beauty junkie” is now available! http://www.amazon.com/blush-unbelievably-absurd-beautyjunkie/dp/1477508813

In my next column I’ll give you all the dish on the book! But first girls, grab your favorite cocktail and read this! Oh, if you haven’t heard, check out SKINNY GIRL! Fab line of cocktails and wine that won’t make you calorie guilty!

So, I’m at a cocktail party with fabulous girls, where you know I get all my best ideas, and a woman with a dirty martini in hand says to me, “Congratulations on your book! You know Harvey, I think I should write a book about my life because it’s probably as twisted as yours!” In that moment I went into a magical dream sequence! You know when that happens on TV and the screen goes wavey and there’s some musical interlude that lets you know we’re leaving the present to venture to the unknown? The Twilight Zone?

I’m suddenly transported to New York City, sitting, looking out of my apartment window, typing away on my laptop about She Dragons, Man Drama and Lipstick. Yes ladies, I’ve now become “Harvey Bradshaw”, aka the “Gay Carrie Bradshaw” from Sex and the City! I adore Sara  Jessica Parker! Look at me! I immediately want to call Samantha, Charlotte, and Miranda to meet for Cosmopolitans but I’m snapped back to the moment by the same  woman snapping her fingers in front of my face, asking  “HARVEY? WHERE ARE YOU??? I have a fashion emergency and I need your advice! What’s your favorite body smoother? Spanx or Yummy Tummy?”

In the cab going home I start to channel Carrie Bradshaw again. You know when she types the question into her laptop that lets us know what the Sex and the City episode will be about? Well the question I typed in my mind was “If we all think that our life would make a great story, how do I write and publish a book?” After my 4 year adventure I can now give you some shortcuts. First let me say that it’s not the way you imagine it! So Gorgeous, with the millions of fab women I know, I bet you might be asking the same question! Since your Cyber Main Gay always wants to help you with any or all of your endeavors, let me give you a short cut based on my experience!

HARVEY’S TOP 5 SHORTCUTS TO WRITING AND PUBLISHING A BOOK!

  1. The only way you can write a book is to sit down at your computer and write! I know that might sound strange but you have to physically sit down every day and write. Schedule your writing time the way you do everything else in your life! I joined a Library so that I could have a place to go to make me more accountable. This is where Carrie Bradshaw and I differ. If I’m at home, I’ll do everything thing else to avoid writing. Plus the potato chips are more easily accessible in the kitchen cabinet when I’m at home. The library doesn’t like all that crunching so it saved my waistline!
  1. Don’t edit until you’ve finished telling the story! Whether you are producing nonfiction memoir based writing as I have or an incredible fiction piece you dreamed up in your mind! Finish telling the whole story and produce version 1 of your manuscript! Trust me on this! My book took 22 versions before it was finally published! The writing process will require editing later by a professional who can see your manuscript with fresh eyes! I have a friend who’s been working on the same book for 12 years! Save yourself the stress.

3.Research and decide how you want to publish your manuscript! I saved this till number three because I want you to use all of your creative energy writing. It’s not easy and you have to stay focused and persevere! Now that you have produced your first manuscript it time to think about how to get it out there. Don’t be afraid! The big question is “Do I write a book proposal, find a Literary Agent, and have them submit to publishers? OR Do I self-publish? My advice is to pursue both. You never know! I was beyond lucky because I met Jillian Manus, who owns her own Literary agency, at a Charity gala she was hosting that I was covering for Betty Confidential! With her amazing guidance, we decided that I should self-publish because of the time it takes to get a book to market! Unless your Lady Gaga! Although publishers were interested I didn’t want to wait 18 months! It’s a personal decision. Here’s a link to Jillian’s site that is packed full of info on agents, book proposals and everything publishing to help  you  make the right decision for your manuscript! Also, a link on how to self-publish as I did so you can get started!

http://www.manuslit.com/flash/index.html

http://reviews.cnet.com/8301-18438_7-10119891-82/self-publishing-a-book-25-things-you-need-to-know/

  1. Create a platform for yourself starting today! Whether you decide to go the traditional route or self-publishing you have to promote yourself! Publishers first question will be “How many books could be sold today if we publish it?” Start a blog! Blog about you and your subject! I thank my lucky gay stars for Betty Confidential! Create your own web site! It’s easier and more affordable than you think! Social media is critical to your success! Facebook will change from the place of seeing your crazy cat pics to a place where people can connect to find out what you’re doing and hopefully build interest in your book. Sign up for all things social media! Especially Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and google +. You must have a way to get your book out there!
  1. Realize that if you’re writing and publishing a book, then everyone you know is doing it too through you! This journey is personal and full of unknowns! This will be all you will think and speak about for quite a while! Your friends and family will be on this roller coaster with you so please try to remember that they are not doing this. You are. Without Jason, Kathy, Kaycee, Andy,Allyson, Diana,Michealene, Rich, PJ, April, Deborah, Shaun, Norma, Philip, Stephanie, Oreo the wonder dog and a host of other special angels I couldn’t have done this. When things get crazy…and they will….know that their friendships are the most important thing you have.

Okay gorgeous! Get writing. Look for my next column on my juicy book next week! It’s the perfect hot summer read!!!

See you at the book club!

xo

Harvey

Meet Harvey Helms, Your Cyber Man Gay

Almost every woman I’ve known in my life has at least one gay man that they go to for friendship and advice on beauty, fashion trends, boyfriend drama or for the real answer to the question “Do I look fat in this?” or “Do you really think he’ll call now that I slept with him on the first date?” Oh, the drama of living! The gays love the drama! You trust your gay man because he always tells you the truth. Always. You’ve probably heard him say things like: “Sweet Pea, you might want to consider brighter lighting in your bathroom considering how much bronzer you have on today, okay ‘Miss Miami?’” or “Your Grandmother called and wants that Christmas sweater back! Didn’t I dispose of that sweater the last time we went through your closet, Precious?” Whether you realized it or not, this man is what’s known as your “Main Gay.” Actress/Comedian Kathy Griffin coined this phrase. If she didn’t, I’m giving her credit because I adore her. Now I’m not trying to make Kathy’s Main Gay jealous. Gay men are very territorial with the women to whom they ‘re in service. We take it very seriously! We are not opposed to the occasional Main Gay cat fight either!

As you’re probably already aware, your Main Gay sometimes isn’t always available when you need him. He may have just met the “Boy du Jour” and he says “No really!! I think he’s the one!” and has to see his new man 24 hours a day. Or he’s had to go back to rehab for a few weeks to take care of a little addiction problem. That’s okay, because I’ve always said “Talented people are always addicted to something.” Genius has its price. Go figure. Besides, when you visit him in rehab, you never know if you’ll run into Lindsay Lohan, David Duchovny or Liza. It just ups his celebrity quotient! We love that.

So here I am. Harvey Helms. Stylist. Culturalist. Up and coming author of a juicy cosmetic tell all. I’m your new “Cyber Main Gay.” Think of me when your main gay is not around in a fashion emergency or when you need up-to-the-minute info on a number of global issues like lip gloss, oil control, body smoothers or the mother-in-law from hell. I’ve been married three times and could write volumes on how I was treated by the Wicked Witch because I married “The Golden Child” by whom the sun rises and sets.

Why should you trust me? …

Well first you’re going to see me at my worst after an Active FX Laser treatment [Check out the actual process with my flip commentary in my upcoming column!] and I’ve got a list of achievements a mile long which you can read at your own leisure in my bio. But here’s what you really need to know:

I’m a self-professed beauty junkie and shopaholic. I shop every day. Neiman’s (NMGA), Sephora (LVMHY), Crate & Barrel (GGP), TJ Maxx (TJX) . . . Everywhere. If you need something I know where to get it.

I know every product and trend and chances are I’ve tried it all myself. My closets and bathrooms are like warehouses. I know the moment you look in the mirror and think “My eye cream isn’t working anymore.” Hello, it’s time for the Doctor or a fabulous licensed medical skin spa.

I also have a savvy network of “Friends” who know the next trends and which designer is doing what! I edit these trends by body type to turn them from “Scareable to wearable.” I also know which designers are having nervous breakdowns or are off to rehab. It can affect the fashion collections you know.

I will always tell you the truth. With some good natured humor thrown in. I was raised by a southern belle, so I come by it honestly. But most importantly, I love women. I love everything girls do. I guess I realized this when I tried on my oldest sister’s “Dyed to match” pink satin prom heels. By the way, no one has ever ever asked me if I was gay . . . except my Mother. But she did it out of southern belle common courtesy. When I speak, a fabulous Prada hand bag or a bouquet of flowers falls out of my mouth. No closet for me to hide in.

When your Main Gay is not around, there’s no need to get anxious! I’m just a few clicks away on BettyConfidential.com. I’ve always loved this site prior to becoming a columnist. In my bi-weekly column, I’ll be covering everything from beauty to style to interiors and special events. I’ll be introducing you to women [and a few men] who are the real deal and make living on the planet more fabulous. With some juicy dish and you “Heard it here first” info thrown in. I’ve always hated being the last to be in the know. I know you hate it too.

Please feel free to ask your questions in the comment section below about anything: beauty, interiors, men . . . well anything really! If I don’t know the answer, I’ll find it for you. You can also look forward to some incredible beauty perks over the next year. I’ll be telling you more about a program called “Harvey sent me” so that you can get more fabulousness for your money! It doesn’t get better than that.

So here’s a toast to our new cyber relationship gorgeous! As your new “Cyber Main Gay,” I pledge to you that your well-being and beauty is my top priority.

Loving Air Kisses for no smudging,

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