Everythingspa’s Blog

CNYSPAGIRL blogs about all things spa

Studio 8 Fitness and A Time For Me Wellness Center, Clinton NY October 22, 2011

You would never expect an upscale day spa and fitness studio to be tucked away along this mostly rural stretch of Route 5 near Clinton, NY.  But just when I had started to lose confidence that my GPS would deliver me to my pre-programmed location, there it was.

It was a Wednesday morning in early September when I arrive at Studio 8 Fitness, prepared for a serious workout. I am joining a small group of women for a circuit training class as a guest of Kelli Corasanti, the fitness center’s owner. It’s the first time I’m meeting Kelli, but she hugs me like a long lost friend. And before I know it, we’re warming up on the cycles to signal the beginning of our workout.

It doesn’t take long before Kelli asserts herself in a drill sergeant-like manner that you’d never expect to come from the pretty, slim blonde.  One minute, she provides nurturing guidance to this group of ladies that follow her in an almost cult-like fashion. (And I mean that in the nicest possible way!) The next minute, she’s a rough and tumble fitness instructor issuing training instructions that you wouldn’t dream of deviating from.  But it’s all good: Kelli is the perfect combination of Barbie and G.I. Joe.

When I asked the other members of my small group why they come to Studio 8 Fitness instead of a traditional gym, the response was overwhelming:  It’s the personalization and the motivation provided in this somewhat non-traditional environment adjacent to A Time For Me Wellness Center.  But most importantly, it’s Kelli herself. “I love what I do and I think it shows”, says Kelli, whose classes are fun, energizing and certainly challenging.  It’s no surprise that Kelli has such a following, given her warmth, spirit and positive energy.  But she also holds an impressive resume of educational degrees and fitness certifications, so you know you’ll be in extremely good hands:

  • ACE Certified Personal Trainer specializing in functional training.
  • Certified as a TRX Instructor.
  • Certified as a Youth Fitness Specialist through the International Youth Conditioning Association.
  • Master’s degree in Counseling Education.
  • Previous experience as a Mad Dogg certified SPIN Instructor.

Kelli has published two books: Kelli’s Quips: Happy Thoughts for Busy People (available on Amazon.com) and Finding My Way Back to Me: A Journey of Self-Discovery (available on Amazon.com and at Barnes & Noble). Finding My Way Back to Me is also the title of an online life coaching program that Kelli created at http://findingmywaybacktome.com.

When my workout was over, I dragged myself down the stairs and into the day spa.  The tough part of my visit was over.  Now I was in for some serious and well deserved relaxation:  a massage, facial and lunch!

A Time For Me Wellness Center’s owner, Amy Croft, has created a welcoming sanctuary in this unassuming location. When I first arrive at the spa, Amy is decked out in gardening clothes and is going about the business of planting fall flowers out on the deck.  When I emerge from my massage, the first of two treatments in store for me that day, she has transformed herself into a sophisticated spa owner.  Along the way, she and her staff have baked oatmeal cookies (they’re still warm!), made the fruit-infused spa water and are mentally and physically preparing for the clients who are scheduled for appointments that day.  This is the typical day-in-the-life of a spa business owner who wears many hats.  What distinguishes Amy and her family-like team of associates apart is their passion for their clients, the spa and their work.

But don’t take my word for it: just ask the massage therapy client who has just received her 92nd massage at A Time For Me Wellness Center.  If that isn’t a testament to why the spa was Voted #1 Day Spa in the Utica Observer-Dispatch Readers Choice 2011 Awards, then I don’t know what is!

The spa itself is a stunning piece of architecture that has surely caused more than one guest to desire, wistfully, to live there.  The large deck, a spectacular gathering place for pre or post-treatment relaxation during nice weather, overlooks the thickly wooded surroundings, which were already showing signs of the fall spectacle that Mother Nature puts on annually.  I can imagine winters in the great room, in front of the floor-to-ceiling stone fireplace, sipping a warm beverage as the temperature dips outside.  It is the most unpretentious of settings – the kind of place where the clients feel “at home” moments after walking through the door.  The décor has a sunny, Tuscan feel – deep green ceramic tiles complement bright yellow walls. Warm wood flooring covered in patterned area rugs and rich woodwork lend a rustic feel to the open, airy design.  A cozy upholstered seating area is perfect for sinking into while you await your treatment; it’s the kind of place that makes you want to linger just a bit longer, so plan on making the most of your relaxation time and not rushing away after your service is complete.

With a full kitchen available, it’s a sought after place for holiday and office parties and just about any other event that a guest can dream up.  There’s even a designated spa party room in the works that can accommodate private groups. Since it’s opening in November 2006, the 4,000 square-foot three-level wellness center has become a popular place for couple’s massages, thanks to its two couples massage rooms. There are eight treatment rooms in total, with service offerings that include massage, esthetics, manicures and pedicures.

Christine Hansen is one of five Licensed Massage Therapists.  What impressed me the most about her massage technique is that there was nothing perfunctory about it.  If you’ve ever had a perfunctory massage, you know exactly what I mean.  Christine used a variety of techniques and assisted stretching to work all the muscles and areas of the body she knew would be sore the next day, courtesy of my morning workout with Kelli at the in-house Studio 8 Fitness (Coming soon –  more about Studio 8 Fitness). The signature massage is a customized 60 or 90-minute treatment that includes hot towels on the feet, hot stones on the back and a touch of aromatherapy.  During my visit, the spa was running a promotion that included a complementary add-on, normally a $5 value.  There were so many interesting offerings; I opted for the foot scrub as the ideal complement to the hot towels.

Jen Salvo, a cosmetologist who offers esthetic and nail services, gave me a pampering and relaxing facial using products by Plantogen, know for plant derived spa therapy.  Afterwards, I followed my own advice and lingered just a bit longer over lunch on the deck before making the surprisingly quick and picturesque drive back to Syracuse.  A Time For Me Wellness Center and Studio 8 Fitness is a gem of a spot that simply cannot be kept a secret!

A Time For Me Wellness Center

7201 Route 5 West

Clinton, NY 13323




Studio 8 Fitness

7201 Route 5 West

Clinton, NY 13323

(315) 723-9986




Spa Review: Skana Spa and The Lodge at Turning Stone (Verona, NY) August 22, 2011

Guest Suite at THe Lodge at Turning Stone

In Verona, thirty miles and just a few Thruway exits east of Syracuse, The Lodge at Turning Stone is a haven among the dizzying array of activity at The Turning Stone Resort Casino. The Lodge squashes the notion of what a typical casino hotel is like. With its separate entrance, complementary valet parking, and refreshingly smoke-free environment, you just might forget that it’s connected by attached walkway to the rest of the bustling casino resort. This is super convenient if you want to take in a show at the Showroom, dine in one of the abundant restaurants, attend an event at The Events Center or if you can’t resist the lure and excitement of the gaming opportunities.

My sister and I are overnights guests at the resort – no husbands and kids allowed.  It’s our first sister’s getaway and it’s so convenient – halfway between our homes in Syracuse and Utica – that it just might not be our last.

Double queen guest suite, The Lodge at Turning Stone

The glitz-free guest rooms at The Lodge have a subtle masculine feel. They have quite possibly thought of every amenity: there is even a full-sized golf umbrella in the closet. All 96 suites are spacious – the smallest at 550 square feet – and many feature balconies or terraces.  Frosted glass French doors separate the bedroom from the invitingly spacious living room with cozy seating options.  The smart layout of the pass-through bathroom features a dual-headed shower, soaking tub, a trendy vessel sink and a full spectrum of heavenly scented bath products from L’Occitane. Plush bedding, warm woodwork and pops of rich crimson create an inviting respite you’ll look forward to returning to each evening.

The welcoming open design of the great room is almost completely surrounded by windows, creating a sense of airiness and grandeur.  Beautiful views overlook the golf course and the pristinely manicured garden in all of its spring glory. This is the heart of The Lodge where you’ll find nooks for reading, lounging, casual conversations or relaxing by the fireplace.

At turn down, soft music plays (The Only Real Thing, by Mark Kelso), slippers are placed bedside and the ice bucket is filled. Instead of traditional chocolates, our bedside table contains a dream catcher, said to move freely in the night air and grab dreams as they pass by; the bad dreams get tangled in the netting and perish with the first light of day.

If you’re staying at The Lodge, Skaná Spa (skah-nah) is just a short stroll from your guest room.  If you’re staying at one of the resorts other three lodging options, it’s an easy walk from anywhere on the property.  Day guests are welcome at the spa too.

Skaná is the Oneida word for “peace” and peace and tranquility are exactly what you’ll find. Prepare to be spoiled here: the spa attendants are among the friendliest in the industry. They will take excellent care of you and nurture you throughout your entire visit.  Plan to spend the good part of a day at Skaná – sauntering from the herbal infused steam room to a cooling shower, to the sweat-lodge inspired sauna and light-filled whirlpool in a prescribed five-step circuit that detoxifies, opens pores and relaxes you before or after your treatment.

The beauty of visiting Skaná on a Friday afternoon is that I have it mostly to myself.  It’s a busy graduation weekend at local colleges and multi-generational families are taking full advantage of all that the resort has to offer, proof-positive that luxury can be family friendly.

Inspired by the natural surroundings and the Oneida Nation culture, not a single detail at Skaná deviates from this theme. Nature is evident everywhere you look:  In the botanical print fabric on the lounge chairs, in the artwork adorning the walls, in the frosted glass embossed with leaves and the botanical print wallpaper and curtains.

Skana Spa

Even the chandeliers represent blossoming florals. The centerpiece of the bright and airy spa lobby, surrounded by windows, is a spectacular circular fireplace.  Everything is designed circularly and curvy to mimic nature.

Amenities are first rate: Okab spa sandals – loved for their comfort, fit and superior slip-protection in the wet areas of the spa, spa robes the color of golden-hued sand and the nourishing healthy spa snacks.  The infused spa water changes with the seasons; if you time your visit right, you might get to try the strawberry water (recipe below) served in conjunction with Strawberry Festival, an annual event in the Oneida Annual Calendar of Thanksgiving.  Hungry spa goers can refuel on dried fruit & nut mix, fresh fruit, bottled water and Native American teas.

Light-filled whirlpool at Skana Spa

For an over-the-top experience, schedule time in the ultra-private VIP lounge at Skaná. You’ll enjoy access to a gated herb garden, a lounge area with a hidden flat screen TV, side-by-side deep soaking tubs, a shower à deux, your own steam room and sauna and treatment room for two.

I’m wondering how my therapist, Michael, will react when I tell him that I won’t be joining him in the hallway outside the treatment room.  After all, he did tell me to relax and take as much time as I need before hopping off the treatment table and slipping back into my robe.  I’m going to recommend that he just wheel the warm and cozy massage table right into the relaxation lounge, with me still ensconced in it’s many layers of plush comfort.  I’m not trying to be difficult, but the eighty-minute poultice massage I just experienced has left me completely relaxed and quite possibly incapable of carrying on with my day.

The prior afternoon, my strong and intuitive therapist, Valerie, escorted me to a spacious two-room treatment suite for a White Pine Foot and Body Treatment.  My treatment began with a foot soak in Bourbon Vanilla Foaming Bath Milk. A medley of heated towels was placed over my eyes, under my neck and on my feet.  I was spritzed with cooling lavender and honey mist and then scrubbed from fingertips to toes with Kerstin Florian’s Turkish Scrub with Eucalyptus. A full body massage with Deep Forest oil followed, formulated with pine and a luscious blend of other essential oils. The Oneida people honor the pine tree as the Great Tree of Peace and the oil is valued for alleviating fatigue and mental exhaustion. At Skaná Spa, one treatment is more luscious than the next.

Our eight-course dinner at Wildflowers was an extravagant indulgence.  It’s an extraordinary dining experience the caliber of which is normally only found in large cosmopolitan cities. The delightful company of Loretta Taylor, Spa Director at Turning Stone, enhanced our meal. A personalized scroll menu, steamed hand towels between courses and an intermezzo of lemon sorbet created a dining experience that we won’t soon forget. Service is crisp and efficient with a welcome lack of formality, pulling out all the stops to ensure that every element of this culinary event is at it’s finest. Our dinner server, Jason, entertained us by reciting the menu as if performing a monologue on stage, pausing at all the right moments for questions.

Soft Shell Crab at Wildflowers Restaurant, The Lodge at Turning Stone

Diners can expect the freshest available local ingredients on a menu that changes rapidly with the growing season. The five pepper crusted bone in filet mignon is buttery tender; the asparagus & morel mushroom salad meaty and earthy. The sweet and subtly briny flavor of the at-the-moment, delightfully in-season soft shell crab can only be found a few weeks out of the year.  The menu describes the Wildflowers Salad as beets, beets & more beets with chicory salad.   A combination you probably hadn’t considered: beet ice cream, beet glass, and brilliantly colored beets in white, red and purple is part culinary theatre and part cinematic performance by the chef and wait staff.

Other highlights from our dining experience:

  • Amuse bouche course, fried steelhead over risotto
  • Foie Gras Torchon with infused rhubarb, Melba toast & fresh berries.  The foie gras had an extraordinarily rich and smooth texture with a creamy mouthfeel
  • Five pepper crusted bone in filet mignon with asparagus & morel mushroom salad
  • Sweet and succulent scallops
  • Gifts from the chef that kept on coming, like short ribs over polenta

You’ll be too full for desert, but order it anyway.  The childhood memories tasting is five bites of sweetened bliss: banana split, peanut butter gelee mousse, raspberry rice krispy treat, cookie dough truffle and S’more truffle.  At Wildflowers, one dessert course isn’t enough. The second dessert course, a final gift from the chef, includes a chocolate surprise (we won’t give away the “surprise” element – let’s just say it’s a combination I hadn’t considered) and a rich liquidy cheesecake shooter.

Stay midweek for the best deals on room rates.

Turning Stone Resort

5218 Patrick Road

Verona, NY 13478


Strawberry Water Recipe, courtesy of “Skana” the Spa at Turning Stone

“Skana” the Spa at Turning Stone means “peace” in the Oneida language, and combines modern treatments with Native American healing principals to create peace and harmony within.  We offer our guests spa water based on the Iroquois Annual Cycle of Thanksgiving.  Our Strawberry Water celebrates the Strawberry Ceremony which signifies thanksgiving for all berries and new life birth, and the Maple Ceremony signifying the coming of the life giving season after the harsh winter.  The power of maple is highly regarded and considered to be both preventative and restorative. This recipe is simple and refreshing.


1 lb of strawberries

8 oz. of maple syrup

10 cups of water

2 quart pitcher


Wash, hull and cut the strawberries into chunks, place in the pitcher

Mash the strawberries with a potato masher to a chunky consistency; not smooth

Add the water, and the maple syrup and stir.

Refrigerate and stir before serving.

As is common in the travel industry, this writer was provided with accommodations, two spa treatments, dinner at Wildflowers Restaurant and breakfast the next morning.  While it didn’t influence this review, Everythingspa believes in full disclosure.


Spa Music Review: Escapes, by Jeff Gold May 2, 2011

Filed under: Spa music reviews — everythingspa @ 2:45 am
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Escapes, Music for Relaxing by Jeff Gold

Music composer Jeff Gold found me through a shared interest group on LinkedIn.  His message couldn’t have come at a better time.  I’d been wanting to venture into reviewing spa and relaxation music for some time, but hadn’t reached out to any composers or vendors.  When Jeff offered to send me a copy of his Escapes CD, I was thrilled!  But the truth is, I had just purchased a pair of Bose QuietComfort® 15 Acoustic Noise Cancelling® headphones and I was looking for the perfect music to enjoy while trying them out for the first time.

Escapes is fifteen tracks (one hour playing time) of peaceful instrumental music that sets the mood for a relaxed state of mind or quiet meditation.  It’s the perfect backdrop to restorative yoga class, a warm bath or a simple evening at home.

My favorite track that I’ve played over and over again is Del Playa (track #1). When I asked Jeff to describe the inspiration for this beautiful song, he tells me “I wrote Del Playa as a love song for my wife. We met at a party on a street named Del Playa, which overlooks the beach, while we were both students at UC
Santa Barbara. I told her it was for her and she thought it was the prettiest love song she’d ever heard. She wanted to name it Del Playa
because it reminded her of the night we met. “  It’s an incredible calm inducing song with just the right amount enchantment; you won’t be able to get it out of your head.  The rest of the tracks are equally beautiful, but there is something about Del Playa that has won me over.  The entire tranquil compilation was even more of a perfect escape when it was piped through my new Bose headphones.

Jeff is finishing up his next CD, and I for one can’t wait to hear what comes out of his studio next.

Everythingspa’s readers can get 20% off CD’s at Jeff’s online store by typing “everythingspa” in the textbox. The 20% will be deducted at checkout.


Jeff Gold


The best reason to plan a girlfriend getaway? No reason at all! April 27, 2011

Turtle Landing Retreat

If your friendships have become virtual, it may be time to reconnect with your gal pals in-person. The girlfriend getaway: It’s synonymous with shopping, lounging in your pj’s, wine or cocktails, great food and maybe some time at the spa.  What you won’t find on a girlfriend getaway? Husbands, significant others and children.  A well-executed girlfriend getaway lets one recharge their batteries and return to the real world a better person. It might be a weekend long bachelorette party, reuniting the girls from college, or just work-weary moms needing a change in scenery. Or the best reason to plan a girlfriend getaway soon?  No reason at all.

Jamie Virkler, owner of Turtle Landing Retreat in Fulton, NY, recognizes that she herself is a better wife and mother after taking brief retreats with her girlfriends. This realization inspired her to open the retreat, a contemporary refuge surrounded by nature on the banks of the Oswego River, in October of 2010.  While the house was designed with scrapbooking groups in mind, you don’t have to be a crafter to enjoy all that Turtle Landing has to offer.  The retreat house, which sleeps 15 in super-fun themed rooms, is ideal for a girlfriend getaway and has garnered rave reviews from first-time and repeat guests. Rent the entire house for the weekend, including the fabulous outdoor spaces, and let Jamie take care of everything including the gourmet meals the retreat has become known for.

45 minutes southwest of Syracuse, the picturesque town of Skaneateles offers boutiques, gourmet and casual dining, and plenty of places for you and your girlfriends to call home for a night or two within every budget.  The cool, deep waters of Skaneateles Lake abound with water activities.  The Monet-inspired Mirbeau Inn & Spa, named to prominent award lists from top travel publications, has everything a girl could want for a getaway: a world-class spa, state-of-the-art fitness center, luxury accommodations, cooking classes, wine seminars, and unique dining experiences spread out over 12 acres. The newly created Life Enrichment Programs focus on health, wellness, spa, culinary and wine experiences.

Speaking of wine, a vino-tasting weekend in the Finger Lakes Region is the perfect setting to reconnect with friends.   For a hassle-free and safe approach, hire a tour company to take care of all the details.  Take a vineyard tour, taste some world-class wines at over 100 unique vineyards and be driven around the lakes in style.  At days end, hang your hat at one of the cozy bed and breakfasts or country inns.  La Tourelle Resort & Spa in Ithaca makes an excellent home base for your weekend in wine country, and they’ll customize a girlfriend getaway to your liking.

For a savvy planning guide, consider “The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Girlfriend Getaways,” by Lisa Kasanicky. This seasoned travel and spa expert guides you to more than 70 destinations throughout the United States and Canada including where to stay, where to eat and what to do. Each chapter has a theme — shopping, adventure trips, volunteer vacations, cultural excursions and of course spas — so that you can skip right to the type of destination you want and start planning your getaway.

Here are seven steps to planning a great girlfriend’s weekend that will be relaxing, refreshing and fun:

Step 1 – Select a date.  This may be the toughest step of all with multiple friends who have many commitments.

Step 2 – Set a budget.

Step 3 – Where will you go? Location. Location. Location.

Step 4 – Select your activities.  Or plan to do absolutely nothing and don’t feel a bit guilty about it!

Step 5 – Make reservations: Transportation, accommodations, dining, spa treatments and activities.  If you’re more spontaneous, skip this step and let the wind take you!

Step 6 – Manage expectations and iron out final details.

Step 7 – Have a great time!


Spa Review: Mirbeau Inn & Spa (Skaneateles, NY) April 13, 2011

Club Room at Mirbeau Inn & Spa

I’ve just arrived at Mirbeau Inn & Spa again after a several year hiatus.  As soon as I drive through the gates onto the 12-acre property, I ask myself, “Why don’t I come here more often?”  To continue reading the article, click here to be directed to my National Spa Examiner column on Examiner.com.


Terra Organic Spa and Syracuse Chi Spot: Environmental friendly efforts March 30, 2011


Terra Organic Spa - Fayetteville, NY

Earth Day (April 22) is the annual celebration of the environment, created to honor one of the most noteworthy “women” of all times: Mother Earth. This month, we’re showcasing wellness businesses owned by spectacular Central New York women who show adoration to our planet through their personal and professional environmentally conscious practices.

Rachel McClean, owner of Terra Organic Spa in Fayetteville, walks the walk and talks the talk when it comes to honoring the earth.  So much so, in fact, that she named her spa after it.  “I was completely obsessed with the human language for months. Terra is a Goddess in the mythical world, but it also means Earth. It’s a name that came to me in a dream.” The clients at Terra Organic Spa are split evenly among genders, so the unisex name appeals to both men and women.

When you name a business after the earth, there is a mighty expectation to live up to.  Terra is a gleaming example of a local business going the extra mile using Earth-friendly practices that include the use of organic products, holistic concepts, energy efficiency, and green cleaning methods.  A spa generates a great deal of laundry and that can be rough on the environment.  At Terra, the laundry soap is organic, biodegradable and free of chemicals – better for the environment and better for the client.  The cleaning products are chemical free and yet still effective against dirt and germs.  Old sheets and towels are repurposed and donated to local animal shelters.

High quality products used during spa treatments include critically therapeutic pure essential oils from Aromatics International, a company dedicated to supporting organic farmers and essential oil distillers in countries around the world. Clovertree Apothecary products have been chosen for their effectiveness, organic properties, strict purity standards and because they’re made in the USA.  And all that goodness only adds to the appeal of the treatments: The organic facial is wildly popular.  McClean says “It’s a delight to hear people talk about the service after the fact.  It smells so good and fills the spa with wonderful aromas. The products can be purchased and used at home to take the experience with you.”

Debra Lee Gertz has practiced acupuncture at 510 Jamesville Avenue in Syracuse for twenty years.  She recently bought the building, welcomed some independent practitioners and christened the space ‘Syracuse Chi Spot’. Along with Donna Heitzman (Chiropractor) and Madelaine Greacen (Ayurvedic practitioner), the three ladies have created a complementary wellness facility that treats mind, body and spirit in earth-friendly ways.  For starters, clients are encouraged to eat locally and seasonally for balance and health and as a way to lessen our carbon footprint.

Syracuse Chi Spot - Jamesville Ave, Syracuse NY

Food scraps and used tea bags generated at the office are composted and added to the practitioners home gardens to enrich the soil and to grow their own food in the summer months.

All herbs that are provided to Syracuse Chi Spot’s clients are wild crafted, organic and most are fairly and directly traded. They are free of pharmaceuticals, preservatives, dyes, yeasts or sugars and are safe and independently tested for heavy metals, pesticides and microbes.  They are also sustainably harvested and grown.

Gertz says “The organic oils used by our Ayurvedic practitioner, Madelaine Greacen, are recycled by a local business and often reused for heating oil.  All laundry is cleaned in a high efficiency machine and if possible, hung out to dry. The detergents we use are eco-friendly and free of dyes and perfumes. “

Here are some simple and effective steps to reduce ones impact on the planet at home:

  • Buy only what you need to help reduce food waste in your home
  • Compost yard and organic household waste
  • Buy organic products whenever your budget allows
  • Reduce. Reuse. Recycle. Repurpose.
  • Use energy mindfully
  • Eat locally and seasonally
  • Practice sustainability
  • Plant a garden; grow your own fruits, veggies and herbs


KSS Professional: The new, modern mineral makeup March 26, 2011

Filed under: Product News,Product review — everythingspa @ 1:52 am
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KSS Professional Mineral Makeup

If you think all mineral makeup is the same, think again. I recently came across a line of products whose founder has lovingly crafted a line of mineral makeup to avoid unhealthy, harmful and irritating ingredients after extensive research into raw minerals.

I’m talking about KSS Professional Mineral Makeup, first used in practice on private esthetic clients for two years at Kenlee’s Skin Shop near Kansas City, Kansas, before launching in August of 2010. Here’s what master esthetician and owner, Kenlee Livingston, would like you to know about the products she has created: “KSS products will never contain talc, bismuth oxychloride, carmines, dyes, parabens, sulfates, propylene glycol, or nanoparticles. The ingredients we use are of the highest grade and primarily consist of titanium, iron and zinc oxides. The sun protection value is very high due to the level of titanium dioxide and ranges from SPF 30-50, depending on the shade. We also support eco-friendly vendors and do not use raw materials that are not animal friendly or cruelty-free.”

This modern mineral makeup is handcrafted in small batches to be long-wearing and densely pigmented.  The product line consists of:

  • Nine shades of premium mineral foundation powder (shades can also be customized)
  • Three shades of sheer loose mineral powder
  • Premium mineral blush in Shine
  • Two formulations of professional toners
  • Two custom vegan brushes formulated specifically for use with KSS products

I tested the loose mineral foundation, available in nine shades, in Sabrina, a near-perfect light to medium neutral shade.  It was just the slightest bit “yellow” for my skin tone (the medium-neutral shade Oleha would probably have been 100% perfect), but I loved the look and feel of the silky powder so much that I used it every day for weeks! To warm up my skin a bit, I used the premium mineral blush, Shine, to add luminescent tones of gold to my skin, making it the perfect blush or bronzer.

What I also loved about the KSS Professional line is the custom foundation brush with its dense but soft bristles.  This tool allows you to apply the foundation and blusher/bronzer perfectly to the skin.

Under development and launching soon are more products to enhance the line: pure vitamin C crystals and two formulations of face washes.

To purchase products, go to Kenlee’s Skin Shop Webstore at http://shop.kenleeskinshop.com/main.sc.

To learn more about KSS Professionals, visit http://www.kssprofessional.com/.