Happy Easter!

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Happy Easter from all of us at BTR!

If you want more than what the Easter Bunny gave you, make sure to check out our Holiday Savings events all weekend long!

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Makeup Brush Maintenance

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How often do you clean your makeup brushes? It tends to be the one thing we overlook, yet it’s completely essential! Leaving your brushes to sit on the counter between concealing and contouring sessions, means that they unfortunately collect bacteria. This bacteria and product build-up can clog pores and cause breakouts. Make cleaning brushes a part of your beauty routine to help reduce breakouts and keep skin more fresh and radiant.

In order to clean your brushes, you don’t need expensive brush cleaners from cosmetic stores.

All you need is the following:

- A Bar of Soap

- Hair Conditioner

- Baby Shampoo

- Rubbing Alcohol

- Olive Oil or Almond Oil

Use an unscented, pure, white soap. With lukewarm water, wet the bristle part of the brush, and then swirl the brush on the bar of soap until it has lathered nicely. As an alternative to a bar of soap, try baby shampoo. Make sure to clean the entire brush head, not just the tips! Gently squeeze out any excess water from the brush and lay it out to dry for at least 6 to 8 hours. To avoid a wet laundry smell, let your brush dry near a window or a heater.

If your brush is heavily caked with makeup, olive or almond oil will help. Pour a little bit of the oil onto the brush bristles, and then swirl them into a clean paper towel. Don’t use too much oil, just enough to break down the makeup. Afterwards, clean the brush using the process noted above.

The brush should be soft and supple after being cleaned and dried, but if it isn’t hair conditioner can help. Take a small amount and massage it gently into the brush. Rinse in lukewarm water and allow to dry. This should give your brush a velvety feel against your skin!

Now that the bristles are taken care of, don’t forget the handle! By using rubbing alcohol and a paper towel, you can rub down brush handles to disinfect and clean.

You should clean your brushes at least once a week: makeup will apply easier, your brushes will last longer, and your skin will feel healthier!

BTR’s beauty events continue today with Lise Watier, Michael Todd True Organics, Color Secrets makeup, Mekar Organic Cosmetics, and CHI and FHI Heat. Shop them all now!

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Glow Magazine Editors’ Picks

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In partnership with Shoppers Drug Mart and Pharmaprix, the editors at Glow have picked out some of their favorite BTR looks for spring. Shop for these items and more on our BTR Optimum site, and get optimum points with every purchase!

Here’s what the Glow editors had to say:

Stock up on spring’s most sought-after pieces—from classic capris to printed scarves that’ll come in handy on flights, here’s how to wear the hottest items of the season.

Nothing’s quite as versatile as a pair of classic capri pants. Wear them with tropical prints or a fitted linen blazer and wedges to the office and look spring ready. Get the look.

Glow tip: Rock a boho braid to complement your casual look. There’s a a braided look for every occasion.

Mix and match prints or wear statement pants with flat sandals in camel color to anchor vibrant hues. Asian-inspired prints in the same graphic family wear well together, whatever the colour palette. Find the perfect sandals here.

Glow tip: Too shy to wear colour? Check out these eyeshadow shades that’ll flatter every age.

Investing in a good straw bag will help you be spring-ready with everything you’ll need for the season (SPF, umbrella, sunglasses, sweater, etc.). Try this one.

Glow tip: Going away this season? Find out what Glow editors are packing for their getaways.

Add a touch of whimsy to your look this wedding season. A beaded headpiece complements printed dresses and wavy hair. This headpiece is feminine and timeless.

Glow tip: Need makeup inspiration for your big day? Check out celebrity-inspired picks.

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Meet Sharon Sacks – Enter to Win a 1 Hour Consultation

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Introducing for the first time on BTR, dinnerware from the Sharon Sacks by Lenox collection. Discover a variety of distinct patterns, all made in dishwasher-safe bone china. Each pattern offers a world of entertaining possibilities. Wow and awe your guests with a stylishly set table!

Sharon Sacks is an internationally sought after celebrity event planner and lifestyle guru. She is the president and founder of the Los Angeles-based event production company, Sacks Productions. Her illustrious career includes impressive clients: President Clinton, Kim Kardashian, Pierce Brosnan, Denzel Washington, Jennifer Lopez, and many more. All have entrusted their precious memories to her expertise. She works by the motto that every event is “its own piece of art”.

Do you have an upcoming event that you need help planning? Enter our contest to win a 1 hour consultation with Sharon Sacks, herself! Ask her a question on our Facebook page, and we will randomly select a winner from amongst the best questions. Contest ends Thursday April 17th, midnight ET. You’ll get the inside scoop on how to plan the perfect party!

Here are the questions that we asked Sharon about party planning, working with celebrities, and more:

1) As an internationally sought after event planner who has worked with society’s elite, from US Presidents to famous athletes to Hollywood celebrities and royalty, how do you consistently come up with fresh new ideas to please some of the world’s toughest clients?

Creating trends is about finding inspiration everywhere you look. I am always searching for something that’s different, unique, but also palatable. I love to travel, and I draw inspiration from the architecture, color, patterns, music, and even scents I encounter around the world. I take this same perspective with me even when I’m at home. I like to sit outside in my garden when I’m planning an event. It can be so calming, which helps me clear my mind and allows creativity to flow.

2) It’s so many event planners’ dream to work with the clientele you have – how did you manage to make the connections to build your impressive client list?

I started my career planning events for the owner of Motion Pictures Studios. I learned so much during my time there, and received great acclaim for my events. When I decided to start my own business, my mentor was more than happy to share the news with his friends and colleagues, which is what helped launch Sacks Productions. From then on all my business came from referrals and recommendations from past clients. I love what I do, and I’m so blessed that I get to play an intimate role in planning my clients’ celebrations. That personal bond shows in our work, which has helped my business grow into what it is today.

3) A beautiful table sets the stage and creates visual impact for your guests. You recently released a dinnerware line for Lenox that showcases designs both elegant and sophisticated. How did this partnership materialize and will you be expanding into other categories in the future?

I’ve always believed that the key to creating truly memorable events lies in the details. It’s all about pulling together dazzling pieces and unique flourishes that together create a personal and unforgettable experience. While my events may have celebrity sized budgets, my favorite designs and visuals can be replicated on any scale. When I met with Lenox, they were so supportive as I let my ideas and inspirations pour out. I knew immediately that we were on the same page, I could not be happier with our collaboration. I am so proud of the beautiful collection that they helped make a reality. Of course I’m always thinking ahead about creating other collections, but for now I am mostly focused on my clients and making their dream events come true.

4) What is your favorite party you have ever planned, and why?

Whenever I hear this question I smile, because it’s still impossible for me to choose! Every event I plan represents a personal connection I’ve built with the client, and they all truly resonate with me for different reasons. They are each personal to me, and for that reason they are all my favorites.

5) We all wonder what famous people are like in real life – after working with so many, what would you say we’d be most surprised to learn?

In my experience, they have been gentle, kind, sensitive, and unbelievably appreciative. Celebrities are also extremely creative and dynamic; they work in a world where they are constantly exposed to unique and elaborate sets, stages, locations and costumes. I’m continually surprised by the unique ideas and energy they each of my clients shares with me, which makes them incredibly fun to work with.

6) Even with the best organizational skills, things can often go wrong with an event. What was the craziest thing that has happened and were you able to save the day?

I once did a wedding where the entire ceiling was built to look like a secret garden. We had everything approved by the fire marshal, all of our permits were in place and we began dressing the ceiling. The original fire marshal was replaced and two days before the wedding the new fire marshal came in and told us that we needed to have a sprinkler system put in. We had done our homework, but things change and in this industry and you need to be able to adapt. I took a deep breath, processed the situation, and got back to work. We put a sprinkler system in place, everything was approved and the wedding was a huge success.

7) Who is more difficult to work with – a bride or a celebrity?

I think it’s important to remember that every bride is the celebrity of her wedding. On that day, she is the absolute center of attention. Likewise, when a celebrity is a bride, her wedding day is not about her public persona. A wedding is an incredibly personal and emotional event that resonates with all brides equally. I’m happy to help all my clients through every stage of the journey, not matter the obstacles.

8) What is the one thing the “amateur” party planner is most likely to overlook when planning an event?

An amateur is most likely to overlook the importance of their relationship with the client. That bond is what builds the event and your business. It’s all about the client and how you can make every event meaningful and unforgettable. It is also important remember to listen and really hear what your bride wants, and not just go by your own tastes and preferences. It’s easy for an amateur overlook the little things, but those elements are often the ones that mean the most to your bride and groom.

9) What tips would you give the everyday party planner to create a memorable event for their guests?

At the end of the day, creating a memorable event isn’t just about spending money. It’s about emotion and what you can do to create those moments for everyone.

Find more information on Sacks Productions here.

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Fab Designer Accessories

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Complement your look with the right accessories! Today on BTR, we are featuring designer footwear and handbags to help you achieve your perfect spring and summer look.

A favorite among puddle jumpers everywhere, Hunter Boots are quality rain boots that will keep your feet stylish and dry during the April showers. Shop an array of classic styles and colors.

For dryer days, shop Calvin Klein, Ralph Lauren and more from our designer footwear event. Choose from flats, pumps, loafers and sandals for a touch of sophistication, perfect for any office chic look.

Sport some arm candy with handbags from Marc by Marc Jacobs and Guess. Both brands feature vibrant colors to liven up spring outfits, and are perfect as gifts for Mother’s Day. Don’t miss out on brand new spring styles!

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Spring 2014 Nail Trends

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Spring apparel isn’t the only thing that changes annually. Get in on the hottest spring nail trends of 2014! Colored and patterned nails are a great way to add to your individual sense of style, and unlike clothing, it’s easy to remove polish and change it up on a whim.

Here are some nail ideas we love this season:

Stripes: This minimalist and chic look was seen on the runways for Tibi. Get creative with lines at different angles on a base of white or lighter colored polish.

Subtle Ombre: A classy nail design that will look great with office attire, as well as casual spring outifts. You can use two different polishes, or you can use the same one and use multiple coats for the darker portion.

Modern French Manicure: Keep your nails sheer and forget about pink and white. Use a dark blue or black polish and add a diagonal sliver at the tip of your nails. We think it looks completely rad!

Half-Moons: Half-moon manicures aren’t new. However, for 2014, we are seeing neutrals and pastels instead of bold and dark hues. The lighter colors are perfect for spring, and we love how the nude background makes the design pop.

3D Add-Ons: Once again, we see the same color palette, but now amped up with some 3D embellishments! Add some bling to your digits for a cool, innovative look. Rhinestones and small beads work really well.

Which of these are you looking forward to trying? Let us know in the comments.

Be sure to check out our OPI sale today for stunning, professional quality nail lacquers!

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Tips for Great Wine and Food Pairings

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Spring and summer are the seasons of entertaining! Whether you’re planning an intimate dinner party, or an informal outdoor BBQ, it’s important to have the right wine at hand.

Here are our best tips for effective wine and food pairing:

Sparkling Wines:

Sparkling wines are refreshing and versatile. They are light on the tongue and go well with a greater variety of dishes than any other wine. Sparkling wines have a touch of sweetness to them, which makes them extra refreshing when paired with salty foods. For summer BBQs, try prosciutto wrapped melon and Champagne for a tasty treat.

Recipe to Try: Smoked Trout and Caper Cream Cheese Toasts

Citrusy, Light-Bodied Whites:

The tang of these whites wake up your taste buds, perking up dishes that might otherwise seem bland. Also, they’re the only wines that work well with foods that are already tart and tangy. Try a Sauvignon Blanc or a Pinot Grigio, and always make sure the wine is at least as tart as the food, or else you will lose the flavor of the wine.

Recipe to Try: Scallops with Grapefruit Onion Salad

Ripe, Full-Bodied Whites:

These types of wines tend to come from warmer climates, with their richness coming from the oak casks they spend a lot of time in. The full-bodied flavor of a Chardonnay or a Chenin Blanc can sometimes make food pairing difficult. Drink them with heavier dishes like roast poultry, meaty fish, and pasta.

Recipe to Try: Buttery Crab Bread Pudding

Juicy, Medium-Bodied Reds:

These wines have a diverse flavor, and they are certainly crowd-pleasers. There’s a reason why so many people love Pinot Noir: it is fruity, yet nuanced in taste. All of the wines in this category have a vibrant acidity to go well with mushrooms, lighter meat dishes, and tomato-based recipes.

Recipe to Try: Shiitake and Scallion Lo Mein

Rich, Full-Bodied Reds:

From a Bordeaux to a Malbec, these rich wines all pair beautifully with meat. The taste of the wine will play delightfully on the palette when matched with ribs or steak. These wines are bold enough to go well with foods heavily flavored with BBQ sauce or other spices.

Recipe to Try: Sticky Barbecued Beef Ribs

Starting at 4pm, we are featuring our buyers’ picks for outdoor entertaining. Shop a wide selection of camp chairs, picnic baskets, coolers, and the Vino 2 Go: a stylish way of making sure your wine doesn’t spill when you’re out adventuring!

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Q&A with Tracey Mallett

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World-renowned fitness and wellness expert Tracey Mallett continues to revolutionize the exercise world with her body changing techniques. Her credentials include dancer, choreographer, and Master Pilates Instructor. Tracey’s work-outs are specifically designed for on-the-go people who don’t have time for extensive work-outs. Her “Booty Barre” workout is hugely successful and is a growing favorite among celebrities.

Watch her working out with Michelle Obama and a group of excited children on Ellen, here!

On top of her fitness expertise, she is a mother and a wife, and has expanded her talents into the home with tips for party planning, recipes, and motherhood.

We were lucky enough to get an exclusive interview with her! Here are some of her best tips for a healthier lifestyle:

1) We love the mottos on your website, especially “Get Fit. Eat Right. Live Well. Feel beautiful inside and out.” There is no doubt we all believe it, but so many of us have the challenge of actually living it. With our modern and very busy lifestyles, how do you suggest women actually find the time to know-how to make this happen?

We have to really plan our lifestyle and schedule a workout as you would your doctor’s appointment, otherwise if you leave it to chance it will never happen. I personally schedule my workouts around my work and my children’s activities, as you never know when you can squeeze in a quick workout. There are so many resources now for people to get information for a healthy living, the Internet is a big resource especially YouTube and Facebook through social media. However, it’s important that you do your research and you follow REAL experts with experience.

2) You hold so many titles, including bestselling author, dancer, choreographer, spokesperson, business owner, instructor, educator, and of course wife and mother. Wow, we’re tired just listing them all! What is your single most important suggestion for finding balance amongst all that you do?

I believe it’s hard to achieve balance but we must always strive for this every day. I feel that I’m finally at a place that I feel comfortable with work and family balance as I purposely have my studio close to my home (walking distance) and I make my hours so that after 4pm I switch caps from business owner to Mommy. I’m not saying it’s easy but you have to make choices and sacrifices, I wouldn’t be ME without my lifestyle but I could not live without my children.

3) We all know that diets don’t work and that we need to make broader lifestyle changes to lead a healthier life. How do you motivate women in their diet and weight loss goals long term?

I teach them to look at the big picture, focus on longevity and disease prevention. Whole foods are medicine to nourish the body and should not be looked upon as the enemy. There is no quick fix if you’re looking for a long-term weight loss program. It’s about living a healthy lifestyle with balance between good clean foods and regular exercise.

4) What would you say are the simplest changes you can make for a healthier diet?

Cut out sugar with processed foods and increase your consumption of green vegetables and fruits.

5) How much exercise do you think is “enough” to reap the associated health benefits? How often and for how long do you work out in a week?

30 minutes a day between 4-5 days a week is a good realistic goal. It’s important that you mix-up your workouts so that it’s balanced with cardio, strength training and flexibility. I personally workout 5-6 days a week mixing running, BootyBarre and Pilates.

6) What would you say are the biggest obstacles for leading a healthier life and how can they be overcome?

Time is one of the biggest for exercise, unfortunately we just have to find the time somehow, someway, and if we want more time later in life then this is definitely a pre-requisite to be able to achieve this. Not eating good nutritious food, due to lack of education and understanding what the right and wrong foods are to consume plus portion size distortion is another factor. You can overcome this by taking some time to educate yourself about food through books, Internet or investing in seeing a personal trainer/nutritionist.

Motivation is another hindrance but until you start to make good choices then it’s hard to become motivated but once you do start to see results this perpetuates motivation. Music for me is a huge motivation as soon as you hear the beat of the music you just can’t help but move and that’s what it’s all about!

For even more, check out her website at traceymallett.com.

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The Best and Worst Dressed of the 49th ACM Awards

All of country music’s biggest stars were under one roof last night, in Las Vegas. While there were many stunning gowns, there were also quite a few missteps. It’s time to call the BTR Fashion Police.

Here is our list of the Best and Worst Dressed of the 49th Annual Academy of Country Music Awards:

Best:

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Taylor Swift: TayTay flawlessly rocked the crop top last night. The top cut-outs and the skirt slit elevates the look for the prestigious occasion. We think she is channeling a little Angelina with the leg.

Kellie Pickler: She looks fantastic! This Romona Keveza gown is flowy, fun, and perfect for spring!

Kimberly Perry: This dress exudes class and elegance. It hugs her curves in all the right ways, and the glittery pattern only serves to accentuate them.

Danielle Bradbury: The youngest winner of The Voice was a knockout in this glittery gown. With the bright red lipstick and waves, she looks completely glamourous.

Olivia Munn: Wow! What a great color, not to mention a perfect fit! This gown surely made a splash on the red carpet last night.

Worst:

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RaeLynn: What is going on here? A feathered hem on a flared skirt, and a crocodile embossed trim? This dress is all over the place and not flattering in the least!

Kacey Musgraves: The ruching on this gown makes it look like a Prom dress. The fabric looks very stiff, and the belt is very early 2000s.

Shawna Thompson: Yes, floral prints are on trend for spring, but oversized poppies are not. Especially if they come on a background of taupe.

Shakira: Obviously Shakira looks good, but this Zuhair Murad dress does not. The cut-out pattern looks strange: stocking runs or spider web? You decide.

Ashton Shepherd: This songstress also had a Prom date in the same evening, it seems. The material of the dress looks cheap, and the overall ensemble makes the 27 year old look like she’s 17.

Do you agree or disagree with our choices? Let us know in the comments!

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BTR’s 2 Day Super Sale!

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Announcing our first ever 2 Day Super Sale!

On Saturday April 5th and Sunday April 6th, we’re offering a huge selection of top brands at incredible prices! Stand by as events launch four times daily: 9am, 12pm, 3pm, and 6pm ET.

Saturday will feature never before seen prices on designer handbags (Burberry, Dior, and Gucci, oh my!), Michael Kors watches, and our best deals on apparel, flip flops, jewelry, and hair tools. During the evening, you can look forward to a variety of stylish bedding and rugs.

On Sunday, be sure to check out amazing savings on trendy apparel from tops to dresses, and more, as well as fabulous footwear. Then, have a look at what’s new to BTR with Nature Creations spa treatments, Only graphic tees, and denim by Rose Royce. Sunday evening will feature kitchen accessories, luggage, bedding, as well as a variety of clearance events.

With all this choice and variety, it’ll be like Christmas in spring!

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