The Top Shelf: Ana Kraš, Artist

"I’m from Serbia, but I was always really attracted to Japan as a child. When I was 15, a modeling agency offered to send me to New York and Paris, but I didn’t want to go because I wasn’t really that interested in modeling. Then I got the offer to go to Tokyo. I felt it was the only chance I had to see Japan, so I did. I loved it. I felt grown up for the first time; I would work and do shoots every day. The second time I went, though, I was just like ‘OK, this has been enough.' Modeling is just constant waiting—it can be really boring as a job. Imagine just always waiting in line on a casting, for the shoot to start, for makeup… I mean, of course sometimes you get to work with someone interesting, or end up in a beautiful location. But otherwise, you go crazy.

I’m 29 now, so that feels like almost a lifetime ago. I wasn’t really the type of person that was going to have a big successful modeling career anyways, so I went back to Serbia to study at the University of Applied Arts. After university I spent some time in Milan, and then I was traveling for work to places like Paris, Berlin, and Italy. I do furniture design and I guess what you could call 'art'—it’s weird to say that. I do drawings and painting and photography, too. I moved here to New York because I met a man and fell in love.

I guess because I come from a place that was always very poor, and there was a lot of war, it makes a filter for the stuff that doesn’t really matter. I am not going to buy an expensive cream because it’s advertised as a cool thing that is going to make me beautiful—I don’t think it’s worth it. Skin is really about genetics. I have to believe that, because my mother has never put a cream on her face. She is almost 70, and doesn’t have wrinkles at all.

I was lucky to have good skin, meaning I never really had issues. I get pimples every once in a while before my period, but I never had acne. However, I can't do anything to have good hair. It's very dry, and it splits a lot. I use John Masters Organics Lavender Rosemary Shampoo and Lavender and Avocado Conditioner. They smell really nice. And I put Aveda Smoothing Fluid on the ends of my hair. But no matter what I do, or what shampoo I use, it’s never really going to help. I’m just not going to have gorgeous hair. I cut it myself, because it’s healthy for my hair and it’s really easy. Sometimes I'll have bangs, I change it a lot. It’s okay to not like your hair, it grows back. It’s even okay to stick with one thing, because at some point in my life, I was attached to my hair as well. But, I feel like sometimes women with long hair should cut it just so they don’t get attached and define their identity through their hair.

My mom is a very simple lady—very elegant, but very simple. She never wears any makeup, so I was never exposed to all of that. The one thing she ever put on was blush. I remember she would call it 'health.' She would say, 'I’m going to put a little health on my cheeks.' Her friend was a nail technician, so she would get her nails done every two or three weeks, but she also had really beautiful natural nails. Mine have never been like hers, and I do wear more makeup than her. I would never wear full foundation, because I think you always see it when someone is wearing it. You know how I know someone is wearing it? There is a different texture. It looks good on you if you have good skin, but when you see people wearing it and they have a pimple, it looks uglier than the pimple itself—and it’s not clean.

Concealer is the best thing in makeup that exists; it's really the only thing I use. [Laughs] Unfortunately, I’ve had dark circles since I was born—I think it’s from my grandma. I don’t mind it, it’s such a part of me that sometimes I don’t want to cover it, but if I do, I'll use concealer. The problem with concealers is they can be sticky or shiny, or too bright and you look like an opposite panda. [Laughs] The one I use is Laura Mercier Secret Camouflage, but I use it in a particular way. I make my finger wet, and mix it with the concealer so when I put it on my eye, it dries and feels like it isn't sitting on the skin—I don’t like it when it’s too thick. I don’t think they have the perfect color for me, though. I have this yellowish, Mediterranean skin, so I’m very pale now, but when I tan I’m a dark brown gold. I’m lucky with that. So I would need to have one concealer for summer and one for the winter. It’s too difficult.

My father lives in Montenegro, between Croatia and Albania, so I spend summers mostly in the Mediterranean on the beach. The grandmothers there sell raw, homemade olive oils, and another oil called Kantarion that's burgundy red, and you mix them to use on your body. I also use a lotion that's called Mentaten. It's made by this Serbian dermatologist, Dr. Šaljić, and consists only of different herbs and oils, and it’s the most incredible thing. It has a beautiful smell, and I always get some when I go to the Mediterranean to give away as gifts.

I like water and I like to clean—I shower twice a day. I don’t think I’m really obsessed with it; it’s more for the relaxation. I love the feeling, it’s like my solo moment. Or I will shower in the morning and take a bath in the evening. I put salt in it—I get the big blue box of Epsom salts from Whole Foods. I put a good amount in, maybe a quarter. I know that exfoliation is good, but I don’t really do that. In the summer when I’m at the seaside, I’ll use some sand to exfoliate my body. For my soap I use the Dr. Bronner's either in the Tea Tree or Eucalyptus scents, those are my favorites. I don’t really use candles when I take the bath, but I will turn the lights off and bring my pink light into the bathroom because I think it looks pretty and warm.

I use Kiehl's Ultra Facial Cleanser and Pore Cleansing Masque for my face, and the best face cream I’ve ever had is Eucerin AQUAporin Active. For months, though, I've been only using coconut oil on my face and my body. Coconut oil is probably the product I use the most—to remove my makeup, to put on my body, on my face, and I cook with it, too. It smells so nice and it isn't too oily. You must make sure to read the label—it’s important to get the ones that have freshly cut coconuts. There are some coconut oils that are made with older harvested coconuts, so I try to invest a couple more dollars for the ones that are truly fresh. The less days they have been harvested, the better. And you can't beat the smell of the La Tourangelle kind.

For perfume, I use the Aesop Spray Deodorant and also Chloe. I am very sensitive to smells, so even if I like a product, if I smell it on someone, I will puke. The only perfume that doesn’t make me puke is Chloe. [Laughs] Before that, I used this amazing deodorant with crystals. I don’t like regular deodorants because they have some ingredients that are really bad, and the white streak thing is gross. Then my aunt from Stockholm got me a piece of rock. At first I was skeptical because it was a rock, but she told me to wet it. It was great, you could wear synthetic clothes and still never smell bad. And I love the Curaprox Swiss toothbrushes. They are really soft and amazing, I use them all the time.

I feel like makeup is for the eyes, not for your lips. You use your lips for talking, eating, and drinking. Eyes are just there on your face they don’t really do anything, so it’s okay. I have been using this Stila Liquid Eyeliner Pen, and it’s really good. I don’t use much, just on the corners. I hate the sensation of lipstick on my lips and I hate lip gloss, too. But Nars Red Square Velvet Matte Lip Pencil is amazing. I like that it stays on, and that it has a little bit of orange. It’s the best makeup item I’ve ever tried. I don’t ever put lip balm on because I feel like the skin gets used to it, and gets dependent. And I never have cracking lips.

There are all these ways to take care of yourself, but it’s more about what you eat. I do have a dessert every day. I don’t think it's bad. I don’t smoke, I don’t drink alcohol so much. I try to have water and tea. I like juices, but I don’t drink green juices because I don’t find them particularly tasty. I make these pretty simple smoothies. My main ingredients are açaí, almond milk, and dates. I also make breakfast jars. I’ll put a layer of oats, a layer of fruits—maybe peaches—a layer of chia seeds, then shredded ginger, goji berries, banana—you can put whatever you want really—and then you soak it in almond milk and put a table spoon of honey on top. It’s so delicious. I even put flowers on top because they are little and so colorful. They're gorgeous."

—as told to ITG

Ana Kraš photographed by Emily Weiss in New York on November 25, 2013.

Are you having a hard time retaining length? We all want healthy hair overall, but there are a few steps that will get us there. If one of your goals is to retain length but don’t know how, then you will benefit from these tips!

Read On!>>>

  • Detangle gently with conditioner- Use a conditioner with lots of slip so it will be easier to detangle.
  • Trim split ends regularly- doing so will guarantee healthier hair and prevent breakage.
  • Oil Pre-Poos- A “pre-poo” is usually an oil treatment applied to hair prior to shampooing or conditioning. Adding a prepoo treatment to hair helps to restore lost moisture.
  • Air Dry- Minimize heat usage and opt for air drying. Also wring out your curls with a tee-shirt as opposed to a towel.
  • Moisturize- Keep hair moisturized, dry hair = prone to breakage.
  • LCO Method-L=liquid, O= oil, C=cream.Use this method to lock moisture into your hair.
  • Clarify Regularly- Build up clogs your pores and causes tangling and dull hair.  You will want to use a clarifying shampoo or the apple cider vinegar wash to get rid of build up.
  • Massage Your Scalp- Massaging your scalp regularly will increase your blood flow and promote healthy hair growth.
  • Protein Treatments- Using protein treatments regularly will aid in making your hair stronger, after all your hair is made of protein! It's also key in helping you to retain moisture
  • Low Manipulation- Choose low manipulation hairstyles, or protective hairstyles. Constant tugging, combing and pulling can create breakage and shedding. The less you fuss with your hair, the better the chances are for promoting strong healthier hair.
Global Couture is trying to spread the word about embracing your natural hair. Love your HAIR, if it is wavy, curly, kinky or coily.
Are you naturally fierce? Email us to share your hair journey at [email protected].

Backstage Beauty EssentialsAs you know, I spent a fair amount of time backstage this season. When I wasn’t snapping away on my camera, I seized every opportunity to peruse the hair and makeup stations. At every show, there is one designated beauty sponsor for each of the three major categories: hair, makeup and nails. It is the purpose of the hair and makeup artists to use the products of each sponsor when creating the look, but let’s get real; you can’t expect every line to be so complete that no other reinforcements are needed to get the desired look. This is why the hair and makeup teams come prepared with their essential secret weapons.

I know what you’re thinking, is this just some ordinary “backstage beauty products…revealed,” article? Certainly not. I’m not even going there, because why should I? There have been countless articles divulging the favorite cult products of artists everywhere, and frankly, most of us don’t really care about the exact kind of surgical tape that is used to remove a pound of glitter from beneath the eye. Right? We want the good stuff—the things that we can use daily to look and feel our best.

So, this is a rundown of the most current and trustworthy backstage beauty products that every girl needs in her kit for every day life. These are products that I own and stand behind…these are simply the backstage beauty essentials that you actually need.

Backstage Beauty EssentialsBioderma Crealine – Famous for being used by just about every makeup artist from New York to Paris, this hero product does it all. It will remove a face full of makeup and clean your brushes. It’s simple, yet highly effective. I also spotted Koh Gen Do Cleansing Spa Water a lot backstage. Similar to Bioderma, this Japanese favorite features a gentle, non-greasy formula for maximum results.

Dr. Jart+ Water-Full Hydrogel Mask – When models arrived at Opening Ceremony this season, the first stop was the Dr. Jart table, where everyone was given a quick facial for a clean slate. “It’s all about your skin as the first line of defense,” Joy Fennell of Dr. Jart said. “We put on a mask that instantly infuses hydration and helps with the skin’s elasticity.” I walked home with this very mask, and I can honestly say, this works! Its SK-II quality and left my skin super plumped, hydrated and glowing. I would use this type of mask anytime you need a little hydra-boost. I must mentioned that the Dr. Jart+ Premium Time Renewing Serum is fabulous as well. My friend Aimee from The Formula Blog swears by this. Now I know why.

Embryolisse – This French pharmacy all-star is one of the most “feel good,” lightweight moisturizers out there. Sure it’s not packed with all the science anti-aging stuff that is going turn back time, but it feels super luxurious and doesn’t cause redness or breakouts, so it’s perfect for sensitive skin. This is why it’s used backstage. I LOVE to travel with my Embryolisse, because it’s perfect for post-flight touchups and rehydration. It also preps the skin amazingly for makeup. This should be every party girl’s secret weapon.

Lucas’ Papaw Ointment– Another one of those do-it-alls. It’s like a way more intense Neosporen. Made out of an Australian fruit called the papaw, this ointment can be used to treat cuts, scrapes, splinters, chapped lips, cuticles, elbows, and just about anything else. I love it for travel, and use it on my lips and around my eyes for extra moisture. Even Net-A-Porter picked this baby up. I even apply on my eyebrows to make them thicker and healthier. Oh did I forget to mention that this creates a dope glossy eye?

Backstage Beauty Essentials

Bumble and Bumble Prep – A detangler, leave-in conditioner, and a substitution for washing the models’ hair in between shows, this product is top-of-the-line. At Proenza, many of the girls showed up with tons of products in their hair, so artists used Prep to “restart” the hair and bring it back to life. It dries faster than water and makes hair much softer. My friend Sam, turned me onto this baby. “If a girl has bangs and she slept on them funny, she can just hit them with Prep and then redo them in the morning instead of having to start fresh.” — Jimmy Paul, Hairstylist

Simple Skincare Exfoliating Wipes– These double-sided wipes gently lift dead skin cells from the face, leaving skin smooth and revitalized. They come fully packed with vitamins and the added Aloe Vera is super calming. There are no dyes or perfumes used, so it’s gentle enough for all skin types. These are also perfect for travel. I use mine on the plane just after takeoff to clean my skin before popping on my good ole’ Embryolisse moisturizer and my favorite eye cream.

Beauty Blender – This is the KEY to makeup application, especially for those who use foundations and highlighters. When you apply a spray toner, like Tata Harper Herbal Toner or Caudalie Beauty Elixir, onto the face mid-foundation application, it creates the smoothest application.

Backstage Beauty EssentialsMaybelline Baby Skin Instant Pore Eraser – Just a cute as the original Baby Lips, right? This newly launched skincare wonder actually works. Seen backstage at Mara Hoffman. The key is to apply sparingly (wherever you need a little help) as opposed to lathering like a primer over the entire face.  Smooth over your moisturizer (under foundation) and watch your pores and even fine lines vanish. The matte finish simply blurs any skin imperfections leaving poreless smooth skin.

Rohto Eye Drops – To make your whites whiter. I have talked about my love for Rohto before…I am basically addicted to these eyes drops. They are great because they immediately make you look more rested and awake.

Mason Pearson “Popular” Bristle/ Nylon Mix Brush – Everyone knows that this is the best and most universal brush. Hair stylists use it because its the most gentle. It doesn’t cause split ends or irritation to the scalp but can be used to create volume and easily brush out tangles. I love the mini version for travel.

Backstage Beauty EssentialsPhoto of Josephine Skriver (the first) by Carly Tati. 

The post Backstage Beauty Essentials That You Actually Need appeared first on She's In The Glow.

It’s All About The Ads: Spring 2014

When you grab a Vogue, Elle, V, or any of the other worthy purchases at your local bodega this month, chances are it’s because you're curious about what the Annas of the world think is worth mentioning in their big spring fashion issues. But considering that the advertisements (which make up the first 50-plus pages) feature the likes of Oscar winners old and new, your favorite top models, a pop star, and heavy helpings of artistic genius, perhaps there's just as much excitement to be found in commerce as there is in the content. We paged through all the big mags and came up with our favorite Spring 2014 campaigns.

[1] Marc Jacobs Beauty…because if PFW taught us anything (case(s) in point: A, and B), over-the-top blue eyeshadow is back.

[2-4] Miu Miu…beacause Lupita Nyong’o + Elle Fanning + Bella Heathcote + Inez & Vinoodh = duh.

[5-8] Céline…because when something is far from broke, why fix it? Also, those shoes.

[9] Chloé…because Lou Doillon and that hair in that ‘70s jumpsuit.

[10] Balmain…because Rihanna makes ‘80s nonchalant glam seem like a good idea (Olivier Rousteing doesn’t hurt, either).

[11-13] Balenciaga…because Daria’s cheekbones, her vampy lip, and her white hair are screaming a young, downtown Carmen Dell’Orefice.

[14] Louis Vuitton…because the ad might be an oldie, but Sofia Coppola is always a goodie.

[15] Burberry Prorsum…because it’s about time we all embraced our feminine pastel side.

[16] Stella McCartney…because that blunt, icy blond cut.

[17] Prada…because what is that pale lilac eyeshadow, and can we have it now?

[18] Saint Laurent…because Hedi is selling the one thing all men (and many women) wish they could have.