Cosmoprof Asia 2019 / Best of Hair & Nails


To be completely up front, I was not intending on visiting BlueSky this year and it is not because I don’t love them, I actually love them too much and wanted to give another company a chance! Alas, I picked the wrong company to demo their gels on me and ended up pretty flustered after a 3 hour manicure that ended in broken nails due to a faulty gel light. This isn’t a game you know?! So I fled to the BlueSky booth and they luckily had the Russian nail goddess, Natalia Polushkina, who bestowed upon me literal fire nails last year.  She saved me and my nails, demoing the newest 9D cat eye gel and 3D design and builder gels for me.   9D cat eye gel polish has more possibility and creativity, the effects depend on the magnetic stick you use and the way you use it to make different shapes beyond the available gradient looks of the 3D cat eye gel.  The new shape I was into is called a galaxy effect, check the slideshow below for a better look and try it for yourself!

Helios is the personification of the Sun in Greek mythology, imagined as a majestic god crowned with the shining aureole of the Sun who drove the chariot of the sun across the sky each day to earth. That is quite a name to live up to for this new professional nail brand based in New York, yes Helios. As a fashionable nail cosmetics line, Helios has developed an impeccable product look, incorporating appealing aesthetic touches and a special, signature twist to the details. The Helios Goddess product line offers a wide range of artificial nails. New nail designs and collections are developed all the time to follow the current trends. The Helios Goddess product line offers a wide range of evolving nail designs, not just following but predicting trends. Without the sun there would be no life on earth, an extreme comparison but nails are life! 

Yes I know, these are not new to the industry but they are still a hot product on the convention floor. Allow me to introduce you to the company behind your favorite gel strips that you may have seen in CVS, Sephora, or online beauty shops, Joyme.  I cannot name names, but this OEM manufacturer has been busy so I had to give their in house brand some love. These are a commitment-free 3D nail art gel mani, ultra-shiny, strong, wrinkle free gel strips that don’t require UV dry time or soak off removal. Highly recommended for those of us with NO time, whether you’re a nail artist on the go or doing your own nails at home, Joyme brings the JOY out of ME, see what I did there? 

After trying this product I am not sure I will ever need another salon pedicure again. I mean I’ll still get them but I won’t NEED them you know? Lova Skin has created a new generation of cosmeceutical foot peeling for a pedicure and express beauty care at home in minutes. Recovers the softness and beauty of your feet, removes the roughness of the foot skin, hydrates and protects, keeps your feet healthy, fresh, and relaxed. Ingredients include swiss glacier water, aloe vera leaf juice, cactus extract, eucalyptus leaves, hamamelis bark, lemon peel extract 4 Acids : Lactic, DL-Malic , Salicylic , Glycolic–I’m no scientist and I don’t know what all that means, but it sounds good and is quite natural compared to competitive brands.

Most of the time I pick products that are small enough to be taken with me to photograph, alas, I could not convince anyone to gift me the fabulous $600 drill set, which is totally understandable.  I was immediately blown away by this nail drill as soon as it grabbed my attention. How could I not notice all the teeny nail drill bits resting inside the battery pack? Genius!!! I sat down at the booth, wide eyed, proclaiming, “What else can it do?!” The better question is “What can’t it do???” Seriously. A nail drill with a drill bit storage in the battery pack, dust collector, vacuum cleaner,  30,000 RPM, it really is a 4 in 1.  I’ve never seen anything like it but after discovering it I cannot imagine ever spending money on a nail drill that doesn’t come with all these bells and whistles that should honestly be the new standard! Time saver and mess reducer would be a grave understatement of the luxury this thing actually affords nail technicians. Sent from nail heaven? I almost wanted to ask the thing, “Did it hurt when you fell?” I bet it did.


Kocostar’s camouflage hair mask is a nourishing hair treatment that hydrates and rejuvenates dry and damaged hair. The unique and eye-catching pink camouflage is symbolic to an anti-violence campaign. Through bright, warm colored camouflage prints, they wanted to convey the message that we should cover ourselves with love and delight, instead of hatred and violence. Although these sheeted hair masks are a but a few years new to the industry they are still a hot product on the convention floor.  My tiny pink to orange sherbet tie dyed hairs were overjoyed to experience this all too perfectly matched pink camouflage hair mask. Please also reference the matching deputing eye gels and moisturizing hand glove masks pictured below as well.  I simply could not resist so I didn’t, I hope you don’t either! These can be found nearly online everywhere and I have quickly become a fan of all of their other lip, eye, face, and various other masks too. 

This French made ammonia-free, semi permanent direct hair colour certainly caught my attention with it’s packaging and color selection. Made of a mix of 3 vegetal proteins: wheat, soy & corn Unique complex balancing the hair hydration and with film-forming properties for the best color adherence.  I was on the hunt for something to keep my hair pink that might work on my natural very dirty blonde hair that would be easy enough for me to apply on my own. In Nouvelle’s words, our universe came from the big bang…our spatial nuances come from paint bang! Each color was also meant to be mixed or toned down with their neutral Moon tone shade. An explosion of spectacular colors for a universe of the most lively, amazing tones: a color for each planet. If you need me I’ll be on Planet Pink.

On the look out for quick changes I could make to spice up my freshly shaved hair I found Beaver’s color rock hair color spray, meant to add cool color to your hair instantly.  You can create your own style with these temporary spray on shades.  I chose glittery metallic gold, hoping to inspire myself into a gaudy New Years Eve look perhaps. When I tried the spray it lasted all day and only came off when I finally rinsed it out in the shower.  This was a huge relief after years of sprays that would flake into powder all over my shoulders and whatever I might be wearing, lasting mere hours in my actual hair. Highly recommended for quick fun looks on the fly for those with hair color commitment issues.

There are many reasons that this product is already award winning.  Moremo Water Miracle Treatment 10 gives intense moisture to damaged hair from the moment it is applied, truly providing hair that is over processed, damaged, dry an abundance of shine and hydration for a silkier smoother voluminous look. It’s unique formulation of SR-21 Complex: 3 types of natural keratin, 17 types of natural amino acid and hippophae rhamnoides extract and free of parabens, mineral oil and sulfates. Hydrolyzed corn protein, hydrolyzed soy protein and hydrolyzed wheat protein aid the restoration of damaged hair. The serum is also said to increase the speed of hair growth 😉!

This cord/cordless lithium clipper, equipped with a high torque, brushless, Ferrari-designed engine. A perfect tool for cutting all hair textures with power, speed and precision. Adjustment lever so you know where your blend is at all times. Led indicators to show you how power you have left and when you’re ready to go! Also a motor and blades that let you glide through any hair type. You could probably even cut through a s.o s pad like hot butter! I of course don’t know what any of this means but Atlanta based barbers David Connor and Hawk of the BabyBlissPro team assured me that these were the perks they looked for in their tools of choice.  I let them demo all of the newest gear on me, leaving me with some smooth new designs and a fresh clean cut, teaser photos below.

Cosmoprof Asia 2019 / Forecast

Sitting in American Airlines terminal at LAX waiting to depart for my fourth trip to Cosmoprof Asia in Hong Kong I am wrought with a fleury of questions, thoughts, and concerns. It feels like I showed up in 2019, slopped on a face mask, took a nap and woke up to the end of a decade.  

In looking forward to the future we must remember that we are already in the future now.  How will what defines beauty this year be any different in 2020?  Familiar sounding articles scream for our attention across the usual beauty publications and channels. “Click here for beauty hacks from fashion week!” Nope. “Nail trends you’ll want to wear now!” For how much longer will we keep rehashing the same trends and calling them new?  How boring! We can’t blame anyone lest ourselves.  In fact bravo, a HUGE pat on the back to all of the disruptors who have brought beauty this far in what seems like only a skip and a jump from the launch of Instagram in 2009. We have really outdone ourselves, it seems that every conceivable look possible has been done and then turned into a face filter, and then replicated back in a makeup look just to be posted on the gram.  Is this as good as it gets? Maybe, but probably not.  

New trends innovate through new technologies that we are certain already exist and are simply being held under heavy security by secretive government agencies.  Microchips for our nails that tell us how many minerals we aren’t getting, or pills you take to change your hair color from the inside out.  Will nail and hair stylists become obsolete in the future? Will I be able to walk into a box and press a button for a freshly bleached pixie cut or whatever my heart may desire? Maybe, probably. In the meantime there is nothing more original these days than being yourself.  Cheesy, but true.  

It’s almost time to board my flight, my custom buzzed summer candy colored tye-dye hair doesn’t seem to especially intrigue anyone around me.  Neither do my multi-colored reptilian textured coffin shaped French tips.  These are new looks for me, but as I profess, everyone has seen everything before! A decade ago people might gawk and ooh and ah but this is just the norm in 2020, I mean 2019, but is there really much of a difference?

Shout out to Los Angeles based rockstar hairstylist Jefferson Tangradi (@GetYoHairDid) and nail boss at large Fariha Ali (@NailJob), who both wanted to murder me the entire time they spent cooking up my fancy looks 😊 That’s right, I admit it, I’m a nightmare client! I can never make up my mind and I can hardly sit still.  Still, somehow, I convinced these two constantly in demand and often overbooked artists to help my nail and hair dreams come to life this year.  Click those instagram handles above to get to their pages for some musing.

As always the Cosmoprof Asia convention floor is calling to me, teasing me with hopes of innovation and progression to share with you soon. Time for me to hop on this flight and travel back to the future, stay tuned 😉 

p.s. Here’s a photo dump of my hair in process by Monty aka (@monty.rec

More photos and videos come soon !


Miss Handly

Cosmoprof Asia 2018 / Hair & Nails

Wow! What a rush, this years convention was the busiest yet with the highest attendance and number of exhibitors in it’s history!  Every year I get to know the convention and its inhabitants a little bit better, but there is so much going on it is still hard to get a solid grip on things.  Our team of investigative beauty gurus were tasked with finding the top products in our categories for an initiative called #BeautyHunt. My assigned sectors were hair and nails of course, choosing only the top 5 products for each sector from the hundreds of exhibitors is not an easy feat.  I set out to try some of the products on the floor and you know I got in and got the goods though so let’s just dive right in shall we? These gems are listed in no particular order ^_*



With my week and half old coral hair faded to a light beige blonde by the time I got to Hong Kong, I was ready for some fresh color.  But when I went hunting for the best color in the hair sector I did not think I would get lucky enough to come across the bright light that is hair color queen Rebecca Taylor and her new line of hybrid hair color with SensiDo.  “Not just direct dye, demi or permanent but all. It’s the stylist’s choice to create their own color unique shades.” The tones and formula options are available in 16 shades, completely allowing for never-ending possibilities of customized color combinations.  In addition to the customization benefits, the color is vegan, she says, cruelty-free, fragrance-free and has packaging that is 90% recyclable. “Literally trillions of color options just from bottles of red/yellow/blue/black/white/brown….the only limitation with Trillion Tones is your imagination,” she says.


Love at first site is the best way I can describe how I feel about the Amika brand.  They are always innovative and pleasure their consumers with eye catching graphics and addictive signature scent.  This year I was distressed because it was so hard to pick what to feature out of all their shiny new products but I settled on Reset, an exfoliating gentle shampoo with a jelly-like consistency to deeply cleanse, re-balance and sooth sensitive, itchy or oily scalps. Developed with pink himalayan sea salt, clay, and charcoal to absorb and rid pores of dirt, odors, hard metals and toxins. Finally, the salicylic acid helps to maximize the exfoliation process while refined sea salt adds benefits of essential minerals.  Scalp health is wealth y’all, take care of your scalp and your hair will thank you.


This brush caught my eye immediately and I was not surprised to find that it was Italian made and not just by any Italian, but the internationally renowned Giorgio Janeke Company, founded in 1830. The pneumatic base of the brush is in fact constituted by a bottom defined by a particular drilling beehive, patented. Air is evenly distributed on the hair without stressing it and allows faster drying without drying it out. This original SuperBrush comes in 12 colors including two metallic and is trusted by professionals and at home hair enthusiasts alike.  The brand also offers dozens of other beautifully crafted styling tools I would highly recommend checking out.


I’m not even going to play, I noticed this company because of their booth design and they were playing one of my favorite artists, Aphex Twin when few of the boothes at the convention even bother with playing music or enhancing their sections.  It was the music that drew me to find this amazing and totally organic product by a French company called Angel. Enriched with helichrysum active ingredients, anti-inflammatory properties will alleviate scalp irritation while rejuvenating and revitalizing damaged hair caused by hot styling tools, chemicals and environmental elements. Unique leave in formula enhances UV protection to prevent dehydration and damage. Protection from split ends and frizz. Helicrysum stoechas extract, renowned as Immortal, is an eternal flower that never fades even after it dries. Its other special ingredient gingko biboa extract can deeply moisturize and repair dry and damaged hair from within. 


The Aromase’s 5a Juniper Scalp purifying liquid shampoo 2% is designed for the daily cleansing of a dry, flakey, or damaged scalp.  It helps to cleanse and regulate the sebum glands, soothes and conditions scalps for healthy hair growth and essentially maintains a healthy scalp ecosystem. The company developed herbal formulas in Taiwan in collaboration with dermatologists at 50 separate large-scale hospitals and 304 dermatology clinics.   This product could even be considered medicinal and really soothed my own scalp which can get a little dry when I travel or after bleach. 



Yes Marilyn Monroe, that’s right!  I’ve actually always wondered what a nail color collection would look like if it were designed by the icon herself so I geeked out a bit when I found the Forever Fabulous Marilyn Monroe collection from Morgan Taylor. These shades embody the spirit of all that is Marilyn Monroe. With classic shades reminiscent of her Old Hollywood beauty and exciting, vibrant tones that represent her iconic nature this color range is sure to leave a lasting impression just like Marilyn herself. Not to mention the colors are offered in gel AND polish and come in this beautiful box emblazoned with Marilyn’s famous signature.  


Personally I use press ons ALL the time, for shoots and on myself.  Dashing Diva has really stepped up their game this year with Magic Press, their gel nail art heavy press on collection.  They have even collaborated on some of the designs with top nail artists like Park Eunkyung of Unistella.   Other perks include no glue, no dry time, no damage, and effectively safe on natural nails.  


I have become a fan of Bluesky over the years and let them demonstrate an application of their new Gum Gel by giving me extensions this year. Gum gel is the Bluesky version of professional grade Polygel which was originally released by Gelish late last year.  Polygel is all the rage so I knew I had to try it . Whether you sculpt over forms or use as an overlay for tips or the natural nail, this product does it all. Having a thicker consistency to regular builder gel and applied in a way more resembling acrylic application leads to even stronger nails. With a game-changing odorless formula using polymer fusion, it is stronger than hard gels or builder gels, and it allows a faster application time. Simply put it’s kind of like if acrylic and gel had a super baby, if you haven’t tried it you are slacking on your nail game.


Hands down, the best nippers ever and most professional and utilitarian design created by the nail nipper experts in Vietnam at Nghia Saigon, originated in 1990. Throughout the years, the scope of the company has grown and changed but they have remained consistent with years of experience and skillful technicians have given pride to Nghia as the leading manufacturer of nail instruments globally. Their company is consistently ranked as one of Vietnam’s 100 strongest brands and is currently the only nail care instrument brand that has been awarded Consumers’ Choice Award and is ISO 9001: 2000 certified.


I have featured this company before but they just keep getting better and by better I mean smaller and more portable. This is their smallest printer yet and designed for at home personal use.  I also love how this little device connects to a mobile app where you are able to choose a wide variety of mixed and customizable patterns and designs. Customization is the fruit of the future.  It’s an efficient device because one cartridge can already print you over 700 to 800 nails, it’s wireless, and very easy to use for anyone.  


Miss Handly

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