Ruby Envy Beauty Blog bio picture
  • Welcome to my website and blog!

    Thank you for visiting my site! I am excited to share my love of makeup, skincare, fashion, and style with you. Feel free to browse published photos of my work as a makeup artist, or get to know a few of the real brides who I have been fortunate enough to work with over the years. Since I am constantly talking about beauty and hair products, new (or new to me) product lines, and fashion, I figured my friends would be grateful if I had another outlet for my constant musings. Therefore, this blog and site is not only for people who may want my services as a makeup artist, esthetician, and teacher; it's also for those who like to share their thoughts on creative expression through the arts of personal style, makeup, and fashion.

    Ruby Envy was started 13 years ago, after I did makeup for my first local fashion show. Later, being asked unexpectedly to do wedding makeup on the fly got me hooked on the excitement and importance of wedding day beauty. It's an honor working with brides and their families, as well as photographers, caterers, and all the other inspired people that go into the production of a wedding. I am a crazy romantic, and I never get tired of helping brides achieve their vision of themselves on the most important day of their lives. However, I also enjoy doing freelance work for cosmetics companies, fashion and beauty shoots, and personal shopping. I am the makeup and skincare Beauty Director of a bridal magazine, which allows me even more opportunities to test new stuff and write about it, and to work with incredibly dedicated and fun-loving people.

    My personal passions include singing, dancing, and cooking...this is fair warning to all who read this blog, as you may be subjected to anything from musical performance reviews and suggestions to recipes and my favorite cocktails. Again, you've been warned!

    Please connect with me here, leave comments, and stay in touch.

    Good love, great health, and multiple blessings!

    Kenya Aissa
    email: rubyenvy@gmail.com

    Food For Pretty Skin: Latest Yummy Veggie Burger!

    In the never-ending quest to create a veggie burger that doesn’t make me gag, I made a new one this weekend that really blew my mind. Since the hubs and I are juicing fanatics (because feeling great and having a ton of energy is a top priority), I decided long ago that wasting the fiber-rich pulp left over from the veggies was a major waste. We only juice organic vegetables, and the high cost can be enough to make you run to the nearest Burger King. Why waste all that good food to just get juice? Foolishness. So this wasn’t my first foray into burger-ing my juice pulp, but it was definitely my most successful. Here are the ingredients that I used:

    4 pieces Gluten-free bread, toasted

    About 1/4 cup Flax seeds

    About a handful of whole raw almonds

    1/2 of one red bell peppers

    1/2 of one white onion

    3 whole garlic cloves

    1/2 dry chili pepper (I think it was a Serrano chili, but I don’t really know) with seeds if you like it spicy

    About 1 cup of veggie pulp (in my case it was kale, spinach, and parsley)

    About 1/2 teaspoon fresh organic turmeric, peeled and chopped

    1 can of organic white beans, drained, rinsed and patted dry (or really any kind of bean should work, or fresh ones that you cook, but I rarely do this with beans that I cook myself….wayyyy too much work)

    Oil for sauteeing the veg, and cooking the patties (I used extra virgin olive oil for the sauteeing, and previously roasted garlic/chili oil that I made a week ago to cook the patties)

    kosher salt, pepper, chili powder for seasoning

    Directions:

    Put all the dry ingredients except the chili (nuts, flax, bread) into the food processor and process until well ground up but not fine. In the meantime, sautee the red bell pepper, onion, chili, and garlic in a teaspoon of olive oil.

    After the cooked veggies are soft but not browned, add them to the processor and pulse until blended. Then add the beans and turmeric, and pulse until blended. Then add the veggie pulp….you guessed it. Pulse. Blend.

    Add about a 2 generous pinches of salt, some pepper, and about a teaspoon of chili powder. Even though it may sound weird, taste it. Everything is already cooked or safe to eat raw, but you want to taste it to make sure the seasoning is on point prior to cooking it.

    Blend it in the processor until it rolls around like a ball of dough. If it’s too wet, add more toasted bread.

    Heat the flavored oil (or plain oil if you don’t have flavored) in a non-stick pan on medium high heat. Form patties that are about 1/3 inch thick and 4 inches across. Add patties to the pan and cook until they start to brown around the edges. Lower the heat and cook another minute or so to heat it through. Flip it and cook the other side on medium low heat until brown. You can keep them warm in the oven (topping with cheese if you want). I served my burgers on top of arugula tossed with a little champagne vinegar, then I topped them with mozzarella cheese and sriracha mayonnaise. They were full of rich, spicy flavor, and healthy organic ingredients. My kid ate the leftover patties today dipped in ketchup, and clearly loved them. I rolled the leftover raw mixture into a ball, wrapped it in plastic wrap and refrigerated it. It also keeps well pre-pattied and frozen.

    My photos wouldn’t upload, but I’ll try to work out that glitch tomorrow and add them. I’ll post some of them on my Ruby Envy Beauty Facebook page, also. Let me know if you liked them or if you have any recipe changes or ideas that you think people should know about. ENJOY!

     

     

    Designer Tuan Tran Takes a Bite of the Big Apple…and How Sweet It Is! NYFW 2012 (VIDEO)

    I had the best time in New York during Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week! Yes, I arrived several days late due to my vacation, but I still had amazing food (New York delicatessens??? THE BEST!) and wine, a weird yet illuminating adventure (more on THAT later!), and, cherry on top, my first video interview! I chatted with San Francisco based designer Tuan Tran, who took fashion week by storm with designs worn by 3 beautiful models. I have to give props to Mr. Tran, whose designs stole the show everywhere he and the ladies went.

    *SHAMELESS BRAGGING ALERT*--who did Andrinea and Jaslynn's makeup? Me!!! Me!!!!

     

    They were bombarded by photographers, media, and new fans–and yours truly got up close and personal with the designer himself. You may remember my first encounter with Tuan at last year’s San Francisco Fashion Week, and I’ve been a fan ever since. I, for one, will be following this designer as he creates more unique and interesting future works. Check out the interview…the first of many in my quest to keep you informed about fashion and beauty in the Bay and beyond….so stay tuned!

     

     

    Old, New, Thrifted, Vintage, Designer….and the Like

    I just wanted to share some shots of a few fun finds…I was innocently doing some business in Dublin, CA recently and came across the tiniest shop with an even tinier sign…”thrift”. Of course, this was good enough reason for a brief detour. I copped this adorable Halogen skirt for a mere $9.00:

    I paired my sweet thrifted Halogen skirt with my husband’s white H&M button-down, and my trusty Chie Mihara blue

    suede platforms. I looove a skirt (or dress!) with pockets. The sash belt makes it a keeper, too.

    My favorite Chanel sunglasses and no-name cheapie faux silver hoops…I can NEVER have enough

    silver hoops, real or not.

    I thought I’d go all matchy-matchy with my gorgeous Harlequin Feltworks headpiece (a generous gift to me from the designer), and Maybelline Color Sensational Lipstick in Amethyst Ablaze #978. Of course by the time I took this picture it was kind of rubbed off, but here it is:

    Contributing to my mini thrift haul were 2 beautiful silk vintage¬†Oscar de la Renta scarves….they were HAVING A SALE, so in total, I spent $20.00!

    I absolutely adore the colorful, swirly flower print on this scarf.

    When it comes to beautiful pieces, I would never call myself “cheap”, but I am definitely a “bargain aficionado”. Gotta love those little thrift store gems!

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Nail Wars!–My Competitive Nature Extends to Nail Art

    It’s so weird how women evolve style-wise, isn’t it? I remember back when I didn’t care AT ALL about shoes. Like, I had the rattiest pair of hightop Reebok sneakers and (for real) would wear them with anything and everything. I swore nobody looked at my feet, so why waste the precious money that I could ill afford, being very young and financially….lean. Clearly, I have transcended this issue, as evidenced by my crazy vast footwear collection:

    Ahhh...my babies. Some of them.

    ...and the big sistahs.

    Now, there’s a new sheriff in town…my nails. I’ve always thought of getting my nails done as something for special occasions, and I was happy to paint them myself once in a blue moon. As much as I type, and periodically (read “practically never”) play the guitar, chipping and cracking was pretty much a sure thing. Which is why I’m so in love with the shellac trend of polishes, which doesn’t do the damage of acrylics, and lasts 2, sometimes 3, WEEKS. It’s a nail miracle! To top it off, you can get your nails done and immediately fish your keys out of your purse, as the polish is dry and totally unable to be smeared, smudged, or damaged. I love that it comes in glitter polish that can be layered, and my nail salon, Nails by Vivian in El Cerrito, has talented nail techs that take their creativity very seriously. Shellac is very much lik gel polish in that you dry your nails under UV light following every layer of polish, including base coat. For me, with my multiple coats, designs, and glitter extravaganza, this is usually about 4 times.

    This was not intended to be posted, hence the horribe cell phone blur, and post-grow-outness. But this is one of my fave looks, leopard print nails with gold glitter, all shellac polish.

    Black polish and gold glitter polish, with extra gold chunks added individually. Sorry, another cell phone shot.

    All pink, with gold glitter ring finger. This was my making an effort to be conservative.

    Finally a decent pic with my Nikon! So this is teal blue shellac polish with regular nail polish ladybugs. This is a great way to have designs on your nails with alot of detail, with the added bonus of being able to remove the design if you get tired of it...regular acetone polish remover will take OFF the design, but NOT the shellac polish! Genius.

    My two co-workers and I are all nail crazy, and it’s fun to compare nail designs…it’s almost like who can out-do who, from week to week, and I’m getting more and more creative with my design ideas in preparation for what I call Office Nail Wars. It’s not too expensive to get shellac (only about $5 more than a regular mani, at the 3 nail salons that I’ve gone to in the past year). I have yet to see this done in pedicure form, so I don’t even know if salons typically offer it…I don’t need it because my pedis last long enough. By the time they start to look wack, my feet are begging for professional pampering anyway. To remove the shellac, you can soak your fingertips in acetone, a process which is followed by scraping off the remnants with a metal tool. As time passes, the polish will start to peel on its own; however, resist the temptation to pick and peel it yourself, as it can damage your nails.

    My next big nail move will be….well, you’ll see when it happens. There’s a look that I’ve been putting off due to the ridiculous cost, but I must do it at some point…..I guarantee you, victory will be MINE in Nail Wars when it finally happens! Stay tuned:)

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Versace’s Spring/Summer 2012 Collection–Regency Center, S.F. 03/31/2012

    Saturday night came storming into the Bay Area, bringing its pounding rain and wind. It seems, however, that San Francisco was the eye of the storm–it was all fun, fashion, and fierceness thanks to the Bossini Fashion Show at San Francisco’s beautiful Regency Center! The show was to benefit BCAction (Breast Cancer Action), and celebrate Bossini’s launch of luxury women’s wear. Bossini, a luxury retailer based in in Santa Clara, teamed up with Melange and Byrdsong Productions in a brilliant move that made this event a pleasure to attend. From the opening live music by Ella Cooley & Band and ¬†the flavorful fare provided by Sukhi’s, all the way to the sinfully delicious desserts by Black Tie Desserts and music courtesy of DJ River, the evening was high energy entertainment and fashion for a cause. What could be better?

    Attendees mingle before the show.

    The girl sitting in front of me got these beauties in London.

    Me with fellow makeup artist Regard Tang. I’m wearing my favorite red this season, Red Stiletto lipstick by Lancome, topped with Venetian Lustreglass by MAC.

    It was great to see Amanda stompin' the runway last night.

    The generous selection of colorful pants was killing me. There are no words to describe how much I love these green ones. Gorge!

    ………………………………….Model Shai White wears a design by Danielle the Dressmaker.

    Danielle the Dressmaker wears one of her own amazing designs.

    ………………………………….Designer Tuan Tran wears a vest of his own design.