Category Archives: Women

Post by Alison McNeill and video by Miiko Mentz

We attended this year’s Face & Body Expo to see the latest and greatest in lotions, potions and more!  Although the show was aimed at salon and shop owners, most companies were more than happy to chat with us and show us their goods. First up is GoSmile, where we tested several products on and off camera including their Touch Up ampoules, FlashLites Smile Touch ups and AM/PM Toothpaste duo.


GoSmile differentiates itself from the pack by eliminating the pain and “mess” that usually comes along with teeth whitening. Here’s my assessment of the items I tested:

Touch Up ampoules: I tested original mint flavored ampoules and my first thought was that they’re not very minty. Other than that, I like how the ampoule makes it easy to put the solution on all of your teeth and on some more than others if needed. It’s not messy and or goopy and can be done after lunch and then just left on. Very easy and there was no pain after using them for the week.

FlashLites Smile Touch ups: These were very similar to the Touch Ups, but are more for “instantly erase everyday stains caused by coffee, red wine and more, before they set.” Great to keep in your purse or car.

AM/PM Toothpaste Duo: I’ve been using the same toothpaste for awhile now, so these tasted very strange at first, but I did get used to them. The best way I can describe it is that they taste more herbal-y.  The AM is formulated with essential oils including lemon, lime, orange, and mandarin, and is infused with peppermint. The PM has essential oils like chamomile and lavender, valerian root, and a dash with vanilla. Sounds more like a recipe than a toothpaste, but they both contain white cranberry extract (to whiten) and fluoride to prevent decay.

Now check out the video to see more!

I was lucky enough to be asked to speak at the first annual BlogHer Food. For those of you who remember my BlogHer ’09 posts from July, you might be surprised I so willingly attended. I was surprised myself, but curiosity got the better of me, and I’m glad it did.

Continuing the motif, I was also surprised that I enjoyed myself so thoroughly. I had intended on staying through my session, which was before lunch, and then heading out to explore San Francisco. I ended up remaining at the conference for the entire day. I found the sessions, while geared towards recipe-oriented food bloggers, were still relevant for review and wine blogs as well. The whole attitude of the day was different from what I expected, and I was thrilled. It was the perfect size (I believe it was around 300 people) and the programming struck just the right note.


My panel focused on blogging best practices. Not only was I on a panel with an impressive group of women, we actually talked about blogging. It was refreshing. I also attended a session on photography basics, as well as a fantastic session on protecting your work and copyright. I learned something in every session I attended. I’m a terrible conference attendee, and often my attention easily wanders, so BlogHer Food’s programming impressed me.

In fact, the only complaint I heard from anyone (myself included) was about the lunch. It was a hyper Rocco diSpirito and Bertolli. Yep, they served a bunch of food bloggers thawed Bertolli. This isn’t a food blog, but when the people at the table are complaining that the ravioli alfredo was more reminiscent of biscuits and gravy, you know there’s a problem.


Perhaps it was because we were all coalescing around a common topic – the love of food and wine – but I found the entire environment to be a lot more friendly than my previous BlogHer experiences. I hunted down folks I knew, people I hadn’t seen in a long time, and even met several impressive authors who were more than friendly. I gladly attended a party in the evening, looking forward to seeing some people again. I discovered that food bloggers are food bloggers, no matter their genre. Recipe bloggers were interested in hearing from review bloggers (and wine bloggers!) and I was interested to talk to the recipe folks. It was just such a different experience – for me – than the larger BlogHer conference I attended in July.

Finally, while there was swag, it was both excellent and controlled. I believe there were only five sponsors in the expo/demo area (Healthy Choice, Campbell’s, Pur, Cuisinart, and Pillsbury) as well as the Bertolli lunch and the California Milk-sponsored breakfast. I have no complaints with the goodies with which I came home. The organization even set up an easy and obvious area to donate unwanted foodstuffs from the goodie bags to a local shelter.

Even if I don’t speak next year, I’ll gladly return to BlogHer Food. Among other things, it was just great to be in a room with other people who all whip out their cameras to take a photo of their food. Camaraderie wins every time.

Update: Live blogs from the sessions are now available.


Tweet Michelle @writetechnology, send her technology news at michelle[at]writetech[dot]net, visit her wine blog when you’re thirsty, and drop by her day job.

It’s hard to think outside of the box when you’re in a cube. And so I am calling upon professional office stylist Sayeh Pezeshki to help make my cubicle more…well, stylish. First, we have a look around my office to show Sayeh (and you) what we’re working with, followed by her advice on ways to improve the overall look and feel. Check it out below!

Follow Sayeh for more words of wisdom: @officestylist

We recently expanded our coverage to include all things bubblicious and I’m lucky enough to be the one to share some of my beauty insights with all of you. And don’t worry, I’m qualified and have a pantry of products to prove it.

Anyway, I love that game where you ask people what three things they would take if they were stranded on a deserted island, so today I’m doing that with beauty products. Suspend disbelief for the remainder of this post and imagine you already have necessities like food, water, your iPhone, and hot guys to impress. :)

Sugar by Fresh

Sugar Lip Treatment by Fresh:

I find it hard to justify spending $22.50 on chapstick, so I always keep this one on my wish lists for holidays. The Sugar lip treatment glides on like butter (without the calories) and gives a slight sheen while also protecting your lips with SPF 15. I use it alone or under colored lip gloss.

Eyeshadow Primer Potion by Urban Decay

Eyeshadow Primer Potion by Urban Decay:

Just a swipe of this wand before applying eye makeup and it saves you from the horror that is the mid-day eyeshadow crease. Don’t pretend you don’t know what I’m talking about. At a reasonable price of just $17 this is a must-have for everyday use. (A little goes a long way.) It also comes in a gold shimmer color, but after having tried both, I would stick with the original to avoid looking like Beyonce in Austin Powers. And I realize it doesn’t make much sense to have an eyeshadow primer if I don’t bring any eyeshadow to said island, but that should just tell you awesome it is.

Best of Skintentions Daily Moisturizer by Bliss

Best of Skintentions Daily Moisturizer by Bliss:

I’ve always steered clear of Bliss products since they’re a bit pricey, but Sephora snuck a sample of this moisturizer in my bag recently and now I’m hooked. This light, daily moisturizer has SPF 15, illuminating phytonutrients and is formulated without parabens, sulfates or synthetic dyes. It has a great resume, but really what got me hooked was the smell – very fresh with a hint of citrus. Perfect combo for any deserted island.

Now comment on what your top picks would be, so I’m not missing out on anything!

By Julie Blaustein

Girls in Tech Attendees and Panelist xxx of Venture Beat

Girls in Tech Attendees and Venture Beat's Camille Ricketts

Girls in Tech hosted another sold out evening at the MySpace trendy offices in San Francisco. The event, coined Journalism 2.0 Round Table included a crowd of about 100 eager gals and a few guys too. They were there to learn more about the ever-evolving world of journalism. Brian Solis, Principal of Future Works PR and blogger at PR 2.0, set the tone to the evening by talking with The Wall Street Journal‘s Kara Swisher about PR and how its evolved in the last decade. If you weren’t aware, Brian has recently published the much anticipated, ‘Putting the Public back in Public Relations‘. When Kara asked Brian, “What do you need to be in PR?” Brian responded, “You need to start rethinking whatever it is that you know.” Perhaps suggesting that if you want to know about PR, its all in the book. Brian also mentioned that if you want to learn more about PR, check out the Conversation Prism, the Art of Listening, Learning and Sharing.

The impressive panel included former SF Chronicle Tech Editor Deborah Gage, ZdNet’s Jennifer Leggio, Ubergizmo Editor Eliane Fiolet, VentureBeat‘s Camille Ricketts and Techie Diva’s Gina Hughes and did not disappoint the audience with its lively discussion. Topics discussed were about blogging and how its changed the face of journalism, how citizen journalism and how it is impacting traditional journalism, and also the impact of being a woman in the male-dominated world of tech.

Kara kept the conversation moving rapid-fire, without missing a beat; even making some pretty amusing remarks. When talking about how women can find themselves in this male dominated techie world, the panel had all experienced discrimination and blatant sexism at some points in their career. Gina of TechieDiva shared how while at Yahoo! her professional picture that was waist up and seemed to focus on her breasts, solicited many unwanted comments. She would have preferred more professional comments. ZdNet’s Jennifer Leggio felt there was a belief that she wasn’t all that Techie because she worked in the marketing department and as a result she felt compelled to always be on the defensive to prove them wrong.

Some Great Advice about becoming and being a blogger:

  • Just Blog! If you are passionate about it, then you will be successful. Do not worry if you don’t have any experience, it will come.
  • If you have an opportunity to do a free internship, Do it!
  • Always say YES to any task presented to you. Kara Started delivering mail to folks that she has come to manage.
  • Follow your Instincts. If you have this crazy dream to start a blog, Do it!
  • Do not burn any bridges – you never know when that person will be the Hiring Manager
  • Be Knowledgeable. If you need to learn more, take classes, network, get involved
  • Utilize as many tools as possible in addition to your blogging platform to stay connected with your audience – Facebook, Twitter, Friend Feed, iPhones, Blackberry’s, etc
  • Link to higher ranking blog sites to help build up your own traffic. If possible, become part of a site’s Blog Roll
  • Accept that Traditional Journalism is being replace by Journalism 2.0 – the big difference is you can get things done more quickly and at times may have even more more resources

Kara Swisher of Wall Street Journal and Brian Solis of Future Works


Former SF Chronicle's Deborah Gage , Venture Beat's Camille Ricketts and Kara Swisher of the Wall Street Journal


The Sold Out Girls in Tech Audience Listens Closely to the Panel.

Panelists Ubergizmo's Editor Elaine Fiolet, ZdNet's Jennifer Leggio and Gina of Techie Diva