Thursday, December 15, 2011

Happy Holidays!!!!

Wow- I can't believe the Holidays are upon us so soon!  It feels like we just got done with Halloween- time flies.

This year we're changing things up a little bit and we will be closing from Friday December 23 through Monday January 2.  We'll have the site closed during that time, and I'll be sorta looking over emails, but DH and I are traveling out of town for the very first entire Stark family Christmas in over 20 years, so availability and response times will be limited.

We'll reopen the site on Tuesday January 2, and resume shipping on Wednesday January 3.

I'm hoping to have a little time over the weekend to put together a fun little contest for the time that we're closed- just for fun.

Hanukkah comes a little late this year, and usually we do the special GWP for the first night- this year we're releasing it a little bit early, and it's a super pretty color.

I hope you all are having a fun holiday season!!!!  Thank you again for all of your support!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

5th Anniversary Random Refunds!

It's Silk Natural's Fifth anniversary!!!  We have a ton to be thankful for, and to celebrate this year we're doing Random Refunds!

From Friday November 19th until December 4 we'll be choosing random order numbers and sending you a FULL refund for your purchase.  The odds of winning are 1 in 20, and if you've purchased anything since last Friday you've already entered.

I just sent the first round of refunds, and look forward to sending quite a few more.

Thank you so much for a wonderful 5 years, and hopefully we'll have many many more.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Holiday 2011 is LIVE!

After the Fall collection, and Colors for a Cure  I sat down and thought about what YOU need for the Holiday Season.    Another dozen new lippies?  Another dozen new shadows?  Right now we officially have over 700 products, and many of you own a large percentage of them.

It didn't seem really necessary.  What we ALL need is some ME time.  Family is a blessing, work is a blessing, life is a blessing.  But gosh, sometimes it's nice to curl up under a blankie with a cup of tea and watch some guilty pleasure TV, or read a good book, or take a nice hot bath.

I can't give you an afternoon with nothing to do (can you imagine...), but I can give you some little stolen moments, some things to pamper yourself, a few extra minutes in the morning, or one less thing to think about.

This collection is a total Pot Luck.  Each member of the SN staff had a specific request, and actually designed a specific product.  Each time a staff member comes up with a fantastic idea- I tell them to go in the back room and make it.

This time they did!  Susan made the lippie palettes,  bath salts, and gave me the basic concept behind the eye wands.  Heidi made the Body Oils.  Thea made two stunning new shadows.  Jen had a ton of input on the Eye Cream and Blemish Buster- plus she's Jen.  She did all of the swatches, and all of the hundred  "Jen things" that keep me from going fetal about this time of year.

And You came up with some great suggestions too!

There's a ton ton ton of new stuff- you're going to be clicking away for a while.

A few of the notable things:
Eye wands!  Travel friendly, and super easy to use- with pre-designed looks to make your life easier.  To use them just pull the wand out of the vial, give it a little tap and apply.  It's not a product that everyone is going to love, and it might take you a little bit to warm up to it.  BUT that first busy morning when you needed to leave the house 5 minutes ago- you'll fall in love.

They're designed to be super easy duos, and we have a new eye diagram for them.  It's a Half and Half eye, and it's really flattering.  We've been playing with it since Fall, and it just works on everyone- no matter your eye shape.

Lippie Palette-  5 colors in one neat little package!

A Bath & Body Extravaganza!

Eye Cream (about time)!

Creamy concealers- yes- it's the cream blush formula made into concealers!  The color is a little bit different than the older creamy concealers.  They are lighter weight, and super easy to apply and blend.  I hope you love them!

Brow Colors in the cream liner formula!

Lippies in big squeeze tubes- glimmery shades that are perfect for layering!

Tons of stuff that I think you'll really enjoy!

American Thanksgiving is on Thursday.  I'm thankful for you- among my many blessings.  We appreciate each and every one of you, and thank you so much for your support.

We'll be closed Thursday and Friday, and will resume shipping on Monday November 28th.

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving, and safe travels!

Thursday, October 6, 2011

The late Fall release is on the site.  We always do a small collection in October for Breast Cancer Awareness month, and this time it’s a little more personal.  I lost a friend to it last year, and have another who’s fighting it with everything she has.  It’s not fair. 

I’ve tried being positive, and playing nice.  We always released colors with a hopeful tone.  But this year I’m mad.  This is just fundamentally wrong.  We can send little machines to Mars to take pictures, but a few harmful cells are killing off women left and right. 

Anger isn’t always a bad thing.  I think it drives us to make things better, to find fixes and solutions.  I’m much more creative when I’m a little bit miffed.   

So I took inspiration from this:

I propose we fight like hell!!  The colors have a bit of a devilish theme- in honor of Halloween, and to remind us that this is a battle.  My friend was the happiest most positive person I’d ever known, and now I’m guessing she’s the sweetest angel.   Let’s fight.  Make ‘em take the lemons back.

I thought about exploding lemons, and somehow my brain came around to torch flames.  The kind of heat that’s focused, productive, and that you can use to make beautiful things.  The trio is Howl, Scream, and Paranormal – they’re certainly not everyday colors, but really- you need more eye shadow like a hole in the head so I made colors that you’ll probably geek out on.  They’re interesting, complex and fun.  There’s also Demon to go along with the fighting Halloween theme.  It’s sassy and fun.

There were a lot of GWP re-release requests this year.  We also had a lot of ingredients become discontinued, so I did the best that I could.  Quite a few of the colors in this release needed to be reformulated from the original because I just couldn’t get any more of the colors that they used.  I did my best.  Sari is one that I know needed a  lot of changes- but I tested it side by side on my eye for a full day and it’s very close. 

I don’t know about you but sometimes when I’m a little touchy I throw-down with my English major vocabulary.  So we created the Smart Mouth Duo- with Propinquity and a special matching color Defenestrate (to throw something out the window). 

During the month of October we’re donating $.25 from the sale of each jar of all of the Colors for the Cure shadows to the Susan Komen Foundation.  None of these colors is limited edition, but if you purchase this month you’re helping a great cause.

In doing this release I got to thinking about old favorites, and we’ve brought back two very popular balms- Shirley Temple and White Chocolate Macadamia Nut as well as Autumn Harvest Olive Oil Lotion.  AND FINALLY we have 4 ounce bottles of the Organic Olive Oil Lotion.

We also have a very special lippie as well.  We’ve named it Hot Flash, and it’s a liquid packaged in a very handy squeeze tube.  It’s a little bit sheer, and it has the wonderful glimmer from the 24-karat gold.  It’s a little bit sheer, and should be flattering to most women.  It's really more glimmering than anything.

This year the price is $11.99 for a 10 gram tube, and we’ll be donating $2 of the purchase price to the Komen Foundation.

We’re also participating in Team Pink Eye and have donated four $25 gift certificates to be used as give away items.  There will be one give-away on a participating blog each week and to enter you must donate $5 to the Susan G. Komen Foundation.  The individual blogs will have the full entry details- and this week’s giveaway blog host is VampyVarnish!!!!!!

The giveaway should go up on her site sometime tomorrow, and remember to read the details.
Thank you again for being wonderful!  It’s an honor to be part of this project and I hope you’ll join us in FIGHTING LIKE HELL!!!!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Multi-Tasking Safe for Work Look

Funny story....I was doing my makeup one morning, and frogged it all up.  I was doing an experiment with colors, and it just didn't turn out well AT ALL.  Too deep, too shimmery, and just not really what I was going for.

Well, if you want to make an omelette you gotta break a few eggs (or marry a guy who makes great omlettes).  Normally I'd just clean it off and do something else, but we had to leave NOW.

In desperation I grabbed my foundation, and started patting it on top of the hot mess I'd created.   The foundation muted the color, took away some of the sparkle, and made it PRETTY.

So I experimented that night- with the deliciously unholy combination of Rollick and Superfly.  With a little foundation it was lovely.

Moving on to a little more "normal" combo- I went with Scout & Bling.  It's a great combo, but a little over the top for daytime.  Bling in particular looks like gold foil applied to your lids, and it's super fun for a night out.  I love it with a lot of black liner as sort of a Middle-Eastern/ Bollywood inspired look.

Safe for work depends on where you work- so I generally think of safe for church, and err on the side of being conservative.  I think this would work in just about any office.

So far, this technique has worked with every combo I've tried it with.  I like the muted, more neutral look for day, and it's really expanded options for color selections.  It doesn't really work all that well with super glittery shades, but it's a fun technique to play with.

To test the theory, you could try it at night when you're about to take off your makeup.  That's usually my play time to practice new looks- right after I've washed my face for the day.

Have fun!!!!!

Thursday, September 1, 2011

The Fall 2011 Colors are HERE!!!

The Fall Collection is live!!!  It’s also pretty darn large.  Usually when I make a collection I just kind of keep going until I run out of “mojo”- and the mojo held out for three straight weeks.  So there are colors, and colors and colors!  

I spent a lot of time looking at the clouds this Summer- and I love the way they’re kind of lit from within.  So, I set to work to replicate that.  It took me weeks.  I played, I tested, I nuanced, tweaked, and experimented.
And I came up with a new texture that we’re calling Eyelights.  You have to wear them over a primer- preferably Stick ‘em because they look best when they’re a little bit damp, and Stick ‘em keeps them a little bit wet.  Rather than a sheen or a pearl they sort of glow from within.  There’s a subtle heat and luminosity to them.  There are also a few without interference colors that are modeled after Blanket Fort- that lovely soft focus pearl finish.  

They’re going to look a little bit different on each of you- and they’re going to look a lot different than when you just swatch them on your arm.  There’s a luminosity to them that is nearly impossible to capture in just a few pictures.  

They’re going to be different on different days, in different lights, on different people.  

The inspiration came from two sources- our vacation, and the Finger Lakes where we live.
We ventured into Van Gogh country near Arles on this vacation- and what really blew me away about his paintings is the texture.  The paint is built up- layer upon layer of brush strokes to get the shadows, and the light just right.  Starry Night is cool on a poster, but in person- it takes your breath away. 

Texture, texture, and more texture.  Color is what it is- it’s the way color sits on the canvas that’s transformational.  When we got back to Upstate NY it was right in the middle of racing season.  I grew up in Watkins Glen New York.  It’s a sleepy little Podunk town in the middle of nowhere- about 20 minutes from Trumansburg.  

There’s a HUGE race track up on the hill, and there’s a race almost every weekend.  The Vintage Grand Prix, NASCAR, and every once in a while a little Formula 1.

There’s just something about the throaty rumble of a performance tuned engine that gets my blood going.  Standing near the track when they’re going full throttle just shakes every cell in your body in a way that you can’t describe to a person who's never experienced it.   

So I combined the two influences- the beautiful light of Provence with life in the fast lane.  It’s a big nod to you.  I know you’re beyond busy, and I like that your makeup time is your little bit of “me” time- to play, to relax, to enjoy being you.  The colors are complex so you can play fearlessly without worrying about being late to work, or just keep it simple because the colors are already complex enough.

There are also nine- yes- nine new Amplifying Lip Glazes, a new Buttercream, and a new Kisser Slicker.  We’ve also added Vegan Illuminating Powder, Pink color booster, and a new lip stain.   Gigi makes her triumphant day-glo return to the site as well!

We all want the collections to be bigger than they are, but there has to be deliberateness to the colors- and stability testing when it comes to dyes.

There is no skincare in this release because the colors came pretty fast and furious this time, and it was all I could do to keep up with the ideas while I still had the mojo going.  I’m actually working on a few projects, and hope to have some things to the site in another month or so.

In the meantime- HAVE FUN with the new collection!!!!!  It’s big, colorful, and juicy.  I hope you love it!!
Thank you all for your awesome suggestions, and all of the input you have on the forum.  I listen and it helps more than you’ll ever know. 

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Sneak Preview and THANK YOU!!!!

We've reached 1000 fans on Facebook, and as promised- the party has started!  This week's gift with purchase is a Full Sized Tube of Dancing Shoes Amplifying Lip Glaze, and we're doing a special sneak peek at the Fall collection.

I've added two new colors to the site in the sneak preview section- nice shimmering neutrals that you can use everyday, or tuck them away for a special occasion.  The Fall collection will have colors- it's not just a bunch of neutrals- we've been playing with different colors, and textures, and even have some all new pigments that are pretty darn fun.

I don't know when Fall will be ready- I've been up to my eyeballs creating colors like I've never created before, and it's been a process.

And the Facebook contest!!!!!  We drew 20 winners from our list of fans and each of them are receiving a $10 coupon to the site!!!!!

Because it's a Facebook contest where you only had to "like" us to enter, we're not going to post the winners names because of privacy concerns.  There was no expectation that your names would be listed publicly when you clicked "like"- so it just feels like it's not OK to post people's names on my blog.

The winners were notified via email- or if I couldn't find your email address I did send the notification through a friend request.

And in other super cool news Phyrra chose us for this month's Indie Spotlight on her blog.  It was cool to be interviewed by her, and there is a contest to go with the spotlight this month!  You can enter the contest here:

Anywho- Congrats to the winners- and THANK YOU!!!!!!!!!  Happy Happy Happy day :)

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Yes, the site is down....

Apparently the thingamob in the doohickey went kablooey, and then the switch that turns on the backup power failed too.  There are folks on site working on fixing it, but there isn't really an ETA at the moment.

As anyone who's been married for more than about 10 minutes knows- when something is broken, yelling, or asking a lot of questions doesn't really help- and never ever speeds the process.  So, hopefully it will get fixed in a jiffy, and we'll be back online.

We actually have a pretty stellar hosting company- we chose them because they had THE BEST server uptimes in the business.  Yeah.

Onto more fun things- it's high time I tell you what we've been up to!  We were closed/on vacation for a large portion of July.  My husband and I went to France to visit his Mother who lives in Provence.  We made it there during the lavender harvest, and OMG.  If visiting Provence during lavender harvest isn't on your bucket list- you might want to think about adding it.

The scent is heavenly.  Of course, I picked up some more French lavender essential oil for our French lavender lotion, and toured yet another distilling facility.  The place where I purchased it this time does small batch distilling, and I think it does make a difference.

Normally lavender is harvested, and baled in giant 1000 pound bails, and then they put a couple of those in the still, and in a few hours they have a few gallons of essential oil.  The farm that I purchased from is a much smaller operation.  When I asked them about getting a 500 ml bottle- they firmly said no because they just don't produce enough to start putting it in big bottles.

I bought 3 smaller bottles.  It's heavenly.  I apologize for the poor pic quality- the weather was a little rainy, and the fields are absolutely FULL of bees doing their thing.  We took the pics as fast as we could so we didn't get stung!

Other than that we mainly stayed around my MIL's house- she banged up her leg pretty badly, and we just sat around, drank wine and enjoyed each other's company.  It was just what the doctor ordered- for all of us.

Shall we discuss the past few GWP's??  It's something I keep meaning to blog about, and by the time I get around to it half the time I've forgotten.

Luau was inspired by Susan.  She came back into the lab one Wednesday before I left for vacation, and said the Whiskey Tango girls needed a mermaid inspired color for a piece they were performing over the weekend.  Luau is what resulted.  When you fly into Niece the thing that always strikes me is the absolute crystal blue of the water.  It looks like a lagoon, and signals to me that I'm really far from home, and vacation has started.  Luau draws from that color, and I twisted it up with a few other things to keep it interesting.

I fell in love with Luau, and wanted a color to match it- so I created Duct Tape.  Duct Tape was designed to match pretty much everything.  There's grey, silver, gold, and a bit of blue.  It really does pick up most tones beautifully.  I wore it as an inner lid color for a good portion of vacation and was really pleasantly surprised by how well it went with so many different colors.

While I was away we stopped at a farm stand and got some fresh figs.  We don't really get them much around here, and the color scheme really blew me away.  The outer part is a deep almost black plum color, and the inside is a creamy purple coral, graduating into cream.  It's beautiful.

So, when I got back I put all of those colors in the blender, and out popped Eden.  How could I name it anything other than Eden when it's based on a fig??

I've also been busy at work...making some of the products that need to get back on the site.  Maiden has been reformulated,and as soon as I can get to the site I'll put it back- along with the microdermabrasion gel.

We actually had to reformulate a fairly large number of lippies this Spring when a supplier discontinued a LOT of the pigments that we relied on for lippies.  The line was descimated, but I did manage to round-up a few replacements,and completed the reformulations.  It was really about half of our lippies that needed reformulated, and it was not a pleasant process.  It's done, and in the past now though- thankfully.  It was actually kind of neat to reevaluate everything, tear it apart and build it back up again.  Not that I ever want to do that again.

Bubble Gum, and Honeysuckle were casulaties of the great pigment discontinuation of 2011- they were completely made up of discontinued colors, and I couldn't get even a reasonable match.  I tried and tried, but Honeysuckle in particular had a certain pigment where there was just no close replacement at all.

It's ok- we'll rebound.  Oranges are big for Fall- and we'll have something great in it's place (I hope).

I hope you all are having an amazing Summer! I apologize for the inconvenience with the site being down.  It's rather annoying for everyone, and hopefully it will be fixed soon!

Thank you all again for being you- you really brighten our days.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

As Promised!!!

Facelift is now back on the site.  I mentioned earlier that some batches were forming crystals, and it needed to be reformulated.  The new formula has the exact same actives used in the same percentages- so if you were a fan of the results you got before, you'll still get them with the new Facelift.

What did change is the thickener, and the hydration system. Most of our serums are made with Tamarind Seed Extract, Sodium PCA, and a little bit of Panthenol to hydrate your skin.  Sodium PCA really just isn't compatible with a lot of things- including the carbomer we use in our moisturizers.  In doing the research I ran across something called propanediol.

Propanediol is made from corn. It's 100% natural, comes packaged with no preservatives, and is Ecocert approved.  In the side-by-side tests I did, I liked it as much as the Tamarind Seed Extract, and Hyalauronic Acid.  It's a great water binder, helps dissolve actives, and has a lovely skin feel.

The other change that I made was in the thickener- mainly because I think it has a nicer skin feel than the hydroxyethyl cellulose that we were using.  It's not quite as "filmy" on your skin.  The new thickener is anionic- that's the only drawback. Most skin products are cationic, and don't mix with anionic things.  If you let it dry, and then pat the moisturizer on top you should be fine.  The only really bad thing that can happen is that it pills a little.

I really like the dehydroxanthan gum- it's really nice to work with, and it feels great.  I'm really thinking about switching everything over to using that as the thickener, and having everything compatible.

I feel like that decision is more up to you than it is to me- I know how frustrating reformulations are.  Just when you fall in love with something the manufacturer "improves" it, and it isn't quite the same anymore.  Hopefully these are changes for the better, or things that you really wouldn't notice or care about.

Let me know what you think!

To that end I also put a new moisturizer on the site that uses the same thickener.  It works very well with the new serum formula.  It's really quite lovely.  Camellia oil is one of my all-time absolute favorite oils. It's light, soaks in quickly and leaves your skin soft.  It's a high-oleic acid oil (like olive, or argan) which is great for conditioning, but it feels a lot lighter than the typical high-oleic acid oils.  Passionfruit oil is one of my other favorites.  It has a lot of naturally occurring vitamins, and is high in linoleic acid which is great for acne-prone skin.

Then we have Awesome Sauce.  It's a little serum I knocked together a little while ago just for fun- and I code named it Awesome Sauce because I really like it.  I gave tester bottles to Susan and Heidi, and didn't think much more about it.

I came into the office last week, and both Susan and Heidi stopped me cold- they loved Awesome Sauce, and demanded it be put on the web site.  Our skin looks amazing- clear, bright, smooth, and it's great for the morning after you've overindulged.

I think you're going to really like Awesome Sauce- we kept the code name, because we couldn't think of anything better, and we kind of like that it doesn't say that it's anti-aging (which it is).  We don't want people thinking we're old enough to need a wrinkle cream- that's sort of the point ;)

Then we have a few lippies.  I was feeling a little run down when I made my last blog post, and it just felt awful, ungrateful, and whiny to say no to a Summer collection. Winter just drags,and drags, and I couldn't let the precious warm days slip by without at least a little nod to sunshine and flip flops.

So we have 3 new Amplifying Lip Glazes.  These are mostly matte, and very sheer.  Summer is GO time- every woman I know has about a million things to do, and taking time out for elaborate makeup just doesn't happen.  Pretty Please, Nice Tan, and Blushberry are meant to be kept in your purse, and whipped out to add a little polish to just about any look.

Yes, we probably need some more matte Lip Glazes- it's a great formula, and the color selections need to be rounded out.  This is what we have for the moment, and hopefully I'll come back from vacation inspired and ready to make a few more.

We will be closed on July 4th.  We'll be in the office shipping on July 5th.  We'll also be completely closed for vacation from July 18th to July 25th.

The web site was doing some odd things, so I can't update the new product page with a nice link.  All of the new items are listed on the side in a separate listing called June 2011.

Here's a direct link:

Have a great great great long weekend, and please be safe...those fireworks fuses burn faster than you think ;)

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Is it really almost July?!?!

Where does June go???  Seriously- it's longer than February, but it feels like it lasts about 10 minutes.  One moment we're digging out our sandals, and the next it's time for the 4th of July.  Well- I guess time flies...

This year we'll be taking our annual vacation to visit my mother-in-law in France.  Between everyone's schedules, and the availability of affordable flights we're leaving sooner than I had planned.  We'll be gone from July 9th through the 25th- it's a long one this year because MIL needs some help around the house, so we'll be taking care of the garden, shuttling her to some important appointments, working on some plumbing and all of that other fun homeowner stuff.

In May Jen and I went to an ingredient trade show and I came back with all sorts of nifty ideas, and some really fun new ingredients.  Between hiring, and training Val's replacement, doing our semi-annual restock of supplies, and trying out new ingredients the time just went by sooo fast.

Last year we did a little Summer collection, but this year it doesn't seem like it's going to be in the cards for the moment.  I wanted to, we had some cool ideas, but it just feels really irresponsible and unfair to everyone to drop a Summer collection, and then leave the country for 2 weeks.

Silk Naturals has always been open- save for the week that we moved into our current studio, and a couple of snow days Silk Naturals has been online, and shipping every single day for almost four years.  There's never been a backlog, or a delay- 99.9% of our orders have always shipped within 2 business days, and we do whatever it takes to make that happen.

This year everyone we're trying a little something different- instead of staggering our vacations, and making-do with one less person for over a month by the time we all take our week off, we're actually closing for a week so we can all take vacation at the same time.

Silk Naturals will be closed from July 16th through July 24th- we'll ship all of the orders that come in before 9:00 am Friday morning, and then close the ordering system for that week that we're all out of the office.

I think it will actually be better for everyone that way- both the SN staff, and you because we'll be more focused, and ready to bound into August with some great inspiration and ideas.  You can't force collections- you have to charge into the lab inspired, focused and ready to work to make the good ones.  I'm hoping that a couple of weeks in Provence will do that (it always does).

This week we're bringing back Facelift serum, and maybe a few other things (that's a BIG maybe).  The reformulation of Facelift was pretty major- the actives, and their percentages are the same, but I had to switch out the thickener, and a few of the hydrating ingredients.  It looks, and feels different, but produces the same results.  I actually like it better than the old Facelift, and have seriously thought about reformulating all of the serums, and some of the moisturizers to use the new thickener, and hydration system.  It feels a little bit lighter weight, and not quite so "filmy" on your skin.

If you were a fan of the old Facelift you might want to resample this because it is quite a bit different formula wise.  I think you'll like it, but it is a change.  It will be available on the site starting on Tuesday.

Have an awesome Summer, and a safe 4th of July!!!!  Thank you all for being who you are- you really make our days, and we can't do what we do without you!

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Wow!!!!  I guess it wasn't quite as brutal as the last few times...which is cool for everyone really.

Let's end the suspense and go right to the answers:
Groove is in the Heart- Dee Light- Groove Eye shadow
Lola by the Kinks- Lola lip gloss
Theme song to The Young and The Restless- Restless eye shadow
Roam- B-52's  Roam eyeshadow
Once Bitten Twice Shy- Great White- Bitten lip gloss
Safety Dance- Safety Eye shadow
Theme song to Magnum PI- Magnum Eye Shadow

Then the harder ones:
Bolero- Ravel- Bolero Blush
Shine On You Crazy Diamond- Pink Floyd- Diamond eye shadow, or Shine lip gloss.  I probably wouldn't have gotten it from this clip either- it was EVIL
Little Darlin'- Darling lippie

We had a lot of people get most of them right, and the margin of error is 2 songs.  I'm never quite sure where the margin of error will be when I make the contests- in order to have winners we do usually have to include one, but in this contest we had a lot of people getting 9-10 right and it didn't feel fair to set it too low.

The winners are:
Andrea D
Jenna B
Danielle S
Jennifer L
Jen E
Cat B
Kathy M
August F
Jennifer J-D
Christy A
Karmen C
Sarah W
Cathleen Q
Caitlin M
Nacori G
Paula H
Sharon P
Kristi C
Tracy K
Caroline P
Ann D
Heather C
Amy F
Blanca V
Maria H

I hope you all had fun tapping your toes to some fun guilty pleasure songs.

Congrats to the winners- and have an awesome weekend!!!!!!

Friday, June 10, 2011

Everyone's Favorite Contest....

Hello!  Forgive me if this reads a little funny- I banged up my finger and am on painkillers as I write this :)

Things were finally rocking along again....I took a little break from blogging while I did my semi-annual reorganization and restock.  It takes a while to go through and make sure we have enough supplies, and this year has been weirder than most.

This week I learned that half of the world's jojoba supply is grown in Argentina- which has been unusually cold this year.  So, jojoba is in short supply, and about double in price.  I've found alternate sources, but there is NO organic jojoba to be found anywhere at any price.  From now until it's available again, we'll be using conventional jojoba that is pesticide free, but not organic.  The price of the lippies will remain the same because the price of castor oil has finally stabilized- so it's evening out a little.

I banged my finger up pretty badly on Wednesday (car door...ouch)- nothing too serious, but it's a nasty boo boo. No stitches, or anything broken- so that's good. Typing is evil though.  The bright side is I'm now up to date on my tetanus shot, and I don't have to do the dishes any time soon.  So- I guess I'll take it as a semi-win.

During my convalesence I did everyone's favorite contest:
Name That Tune!

Ok- actually I know this is a fairly brutal contest.  I sort of delight in picking odd clips from songs you probably haven't heard in years. It's the toughest 2 minutes in makeup- and if you win- you get the satisfaction of knowing you beat a pretty tough challenge.  Oh, and a $5 gift certificate to Silk Naturals :)

The following is 10 different songs- and each one of them corresponds to a different Silk Naturals Product.  To enter just send your 10 answers (just the product name) to sncontests at

Entries must be received by Friday June 17th at 11:59 pm Eastern Standard time.  I'll post the winners shortly afterwards.

I can pretty much guarantee that there will be a margin of error- it's fairly rare for someone to get all of them. So, if you know more than say 6-7 take a shot and enter.  Really try to get them all right though...because from experience, people miss the oddest ones sometimes.

There are two TV theme songs in this collection- we're looking for the name of the show, not the name of the piece of music.  They're pretty recognizable this time (unlike the Charmed debacle of '09 with that Smith's song).

Good Luck!!!!!!!

Everyone's Favorite Contest....

Hello!  Forgive me if this reads a little funny- I banged up my finger and am on painkillers as I write this :)

Things were finally rocking along again....I took a little break from blogging while I did my semi-annual reorganization and restock.  It takes a while to go through and make sure we have enough supplies, and this year has been weirder than most.

This week I learned that half of the world's jojoba supply is grown in Argentina- which has been unusually cold this year.  So, jojoba is in short supply, and about double in price.  I've found alternate sources, but there is NO organic jojoba to be found anywhere at any price.  From now until it's available again, we'll be using conventional jojoba that is pesticide free, but not organic.  The price of the lippies will remain the same because the price of castor oil has finally stabilized- so it's evening out a little.

I banged my finger up pretty badly on Wednesday (car door...ouch)- nothing too serious, but it's a nasty boo boo. No stitches, or anything broken- so that's good. Typing is evil though.  The bright side is I'm now up to date on my tetanus shot, and I don't have to do the dishes any time soon.  So- I guess I'll take it as a semi-win.

During my convalesence I did everyone's favorite contest:
Name That Tune!

Ok- actually I know this is a fairly brutal contest.  I sort of delight in picking odd clips from songs you probably haven't heard in years. It's the toughest 2 minutes in makeup- and if you win- you get the satisfaction of knowing you beat a pretty tough challenge.  Oh, and a $5 gift certificate to Silk Naturals :)

The following is 10 different songs- and each one of them corresponds to a different Silk Naturals Product.  To enter just send your 10 answers (just the product name) to sncontests at

Entries must be received by Friday June 17th at 11:59 pm Eastern Standard time.  I'll post the winners shortly afterwards.

I can pretty much guarantee that there will be a margin of error- it's fairly rare for someone to get all of them. So, if you know more than say 6-7 take a shot and enter.  Really try to get them all right though...there may be a special bonus if you get them all.

There are two TV theme songs in this collection- we're looking for the name of the show, not the name of the piece of music.  They're pretty recognizable this time (unlike the Charmed debacle of '09 with that Smith's song).

Good Luck!!!!!!!

Friday, May 27, 2011

Changes and Last Call for some items...

I've been more absent than usual lately- Val has moved on to greener pastures, and I've been double-timing it around the shop. She actually had a little part time job on the side, and because she's Super Val she got a promotion that she couldn't pass up.  We're happy for her, and we'll miss her.

We were very fortunate to find a great replacement in Heidi, and she's learning the ropes pretty darn fast.

Last week's gift with purchase was Mystic- I apologize for the name recycling.  It was inspired by a conversation I had with a friend, and I rather like it.  This week's GWP is Inspire- something fun, something easy, and something inspired.

We have a few products that need to take the Summer off- a few of the meltier skin care products- the Cuticle Balm, Lotion Bars, and the Liner Palettes.  We're not exactly sure if the Liner Palettes will melt, but they are really a labor of love, and it would kill us to hear that it melted in a mailbox, so we're pulling them for the foreseeable future.

We also have to discontinue some of the lip balms to make room on the shelves.  Right now they're stacked and stacked and stacked on top of each other.  So the Winter flavors are going on a little Summer vacation too.

They're all in a special category on the site called "Last Call" and will be available through Monday.

The other little piece of news is that I need to reformulate Facelift.   I know it's a real favorite, and I love it too, but lately a few of the batches grew some crystals.   I've made it the same way for years- and all of a sudden we've had to throw-out a few batches because of the crystal issue.  I'm working on it, and will have it back on the site ASAP.

Happy Summer!!!!!!!  Have a lovely, wonderful, and safe Memorial Day weekend!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Spring 2011 Finally!!!!!!!

Up above our shop is a dance studio.  Years ago countless little girls lined up to take ballet, and tap from Lucille the dance teacher.  One of them was our very own Susan!  She kept dancing- through high school, and college and then stopped to raise a family, and be my right hand woman around the shop.

When we moved into our current office a little over a year ago, Susan and her friends started a dance troupe in the 3rd floor space.  They've gone on to become the Whiskey Tango Sideshow.  They're a cabaret nouveau troup that sings, dances, and essentially knocks the audience's socks off every time they step on stage.

For their first solo show a few weeks ago I designed a small collection- they're a fun, smart, and immensely talented group of women.  Funny, and down to earth- it was an honor to work with them.  My instinct tells me in a few years I'll say "I knew them when..." 

The collection of 3 eyeshadows, and 3 lipsticks were made for the girls for their show- and it was so much fun I just kept going with it.  I did go to circus camp for 5 it runs in my blood too.

The Whiskey Tango girls are REAL women- 3 farm girls, an ER nurse, a massage therapist, and a hairdresser by day.  Most of them are mommies too...but every Wednesday night they turn into Sideshow gals to practice their act.  They're living the dream.

In the spirit of that- this collection is centered around the things I always wanted to get around to doing.  Some of these projects date back years- a collection of non-sting plumpers (in development for about a year), lip stains (what was that 3 Christmas' ago already???), a self tanner, an eye shadow primer- and the showstopper of the collection- THE CREAM LINER PALETTE!

I'm sort of really in love with the Amplifying Lip Glazes- they're almost as glossy as a liquid gloss, and they have the gradual non-stinging lip plumper that makes your lips soft, full and super healthy.  There's also a nice refreshing hint of a minty tingle too.  They're sort of what I was working on last Spring, and it finally all came together.  The colors in this release are sheer with a touch of glimmer in them. They're made for layering over the new lip stains, but look great by themselves too.

Without further ado- Silk Naturals is proud to present the Whiskey Tango Sideshow Spring 2011 Collection!!!

Enjoy- and thank you all for your patience, wisdom, awesome suggestions, and support- you've literally been waiting years for some of these products, and I hope you love them.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Limerick and More...

I'm trying to get a bit more consistent at blogging...there are a ton of fun, and interesting things that go on every week at SN, and I just don't get the time to blog about it all.

First, I'd like to thank you all so much for your support of the newest collection, and for your feedback on the gumballs.  New formulas are a tough process.  I once met a chemist for an ingredient manufacturer who spent a year working on the formula for a single bath bomb.  An. Entire. Year.  She went on and on about flash foam and coco betaine- and I knew I'd found a kindred spirit. 

That's sort of what it takes to make a good formula- you can have every advantage possible- knowledge, ingredients, skills etc. but when the rubber meets the road it's an entirely different ballgame.  When you start with piles of ingredients that don't do a whole lot on their own and make it into something usable there's a hundred different ways to get it right, and about a million ways to mess it up.

Eye shadow primer has been the bane of my formulating career.  It's the single trickiest formula I've ever tried to make, and I've been working on it for years.  There are easily 200 different revisions on that formula, and I'll probably still think about it when I'm in the old-folks home.

Version 1 of the Stick 'Em primer was well liked by everyone- but the manufacturer who made the silica that we used went out of business.  So Version 2 came out- and I still rather like that one.  Version 3 was a test formula that was included in the MAC packages- and now we have Version 4 that was gumballed last week.

We're getting feedback on that one- both good and bad.  Honestly, I learn more from the bad reports than the good ones, so I try not to discourage dissent.  I like Version 4- I'm proud of the formula.  It's pretty much all natural, and in theory, you could even eat it.  I also like the way it makes colors pop, but doesn't make mattes look funky.

We'll most likely release that one because I do think it has its merits.  The other important part about new formulas is that we sell them with integrity.  Not every product we make is going to be a perfect holy grail for everyone- it just can't happen.  So, we need good information for the descriptions- did it work for you, how did it work, if it failed why do you think it failed.

Pretty much any information that would be helpful to someone purchasing the product is great to have.  It's why we gumball. I think it's part of what makes us SN.

There's a thread on the forum relating to the Primer if you get a chance pop in and let us know what you think about it!  If you're not a member of our forum, you could also just email us through the Contact Us form on the web site.

Onto the next subject...the Gift With Purchases :)
When we started doing the Mystery Adventure Club I started writing little notes about each GWP color- why I made it, what went into it, my inspiration etc.  It was a popular feature of the packages, and for a while I blogged about them too.  I'm not sure why I stopped- other than I tend to make them on Friday's and then go home and utterly crash.

So, continuing with the tradition I owe you all a few writeups for the GWP colors.
Limerick was the GWP the week of St. Patrick's Day.  I've actually been to Ireland briefly, and it really and truly is green. They get so much rain that the entire island is just lush with green.  Rather than do the expected green I went with blue.  More specifically, a dirty blue.  Because limericks (at least the memorable ones) are well- dirty. Blues aren't super hot sellers for us, so I added a bit of copper so you'd have a chance to match it with something other than blue.  It sort of ended up purple-ish, but I think it was an interesting color.

Emporium was what I call a "scratch" color.  Twyla Tharpe talks about the process that she calls "scratching" in her book The Creative Habit (great read if you're into creative things)- she just goes to her studio and does things.  Being busy, stretching yourself, making yourself be creative are sort of habits.  Some weeks I have a very clear vision of the color I want to make, and other times I go in and just kind of scratch at it until I get something I like.  Some of my favorite colors were made that way- Sari started out with my wondering what would happen if I used a lot of boron nitride in a color.  Blanket Fort started out as a quest to make something that felt soft like a blanket.

Emporium riffed off of Hug Me.  I liked the way Thea used a strong interference and backed it up with an entirely different color- so I played around with that theme.   I like the pink overlay.

This week's color is Shake It!  It's inspired by a song.  Not just any song either...this song:

It's written, and performed by Tyler Barks this amazingly talented rapper.  I found him on the new website which is a totally fun site.  It's people who will do all sorts of things for $5- so I hired Tyler to write a rap.  Can you imagine being an 18-year-old rapper, and getting an email from some crazy woman in New York to write a rap about makeup?  For $5 I wasn't expecting a whole lot- mainly a fun little experiment, and a way to support the arts.

And he did it!  He totally pulled it off.  If you want to see any of his other work he has his own Youtube channel:

Susan said we have a $5 rap and a $3.50 video, and I couldn't agree more- it's something I hacked together, and I have no talent for video production.  But the song is fun!  If you do have a talent for video production and want to make a video for this song hit me up...there's a gift certificate in it for you.

Next week we're switching things up just a little bit.  Instead of doing a gift with purchase product we're sending you all a little magic trick, and a coupon code in honor of April Fool's Day (no foolin').

Apparently this has turned into a I'll sign off for now.  Thanks for reading if you've gotten this far :)

Silk Naturals Mineral Foundation (640x480).mp4

Thursday, March 17, 2011


I've been working on a lot of different projects.  Little things here and there that I want/need to accomplish.
On Monday morning I woke up inspired.  I wanted, needed to make eye shadows.

When the universe sends you a message like this you really just have to go with it.  That's the way I prefer to work...not releasing a collection because it's a certain date, or a certain time, or I'm being gently, sweetly nudged in a certain direction, but because I'm inspired.  When I've tried to force it, it looks and feels well...forced.  Those colors usually wind-up in the scrap heap.

 Sometimes the muse whispers make lippies, sometimes it's tackle a skin care issue, sometimes it's a technical itch I need to scratch.  I tend to go with it, and then I save them up to make a big collection.

This time the muse whispered eye shadow, and I went to work.  You know how some weeks things just "click"?  So far, this week, things are clicking.  The Spring eye shadows are done. And these girls are wild- they want to come out and play!!!!!! We're right in the middle of several projects for spring, and they'll be awesome when they're done, but they're going to take a bit of time to get just right.

I drew on all of the yummy things about Summer for inspiration.  Ice cream, icy drinks, fruit- things that just don't taste the same in January.   The name of this collection is "With a Cherry On Top". 

We went to Finland to visit my brother-in-law and his family on our last vacation.   Under normal circumstances it's a pretty darn great country.  They have the least corrupt system of government, the best educational system, one of the best health care systems, have the highest per capita coffee consumption and they're generally just nice, happy go lucky folks.   No country is perfect, but Finland gets pretty darn close.   I've been married to a true and proper, block-headed, salmiakki eating Suomalainen (that's Finn in Finnish) from Munkkiniemi for almost 12 years.  I like Finns.

IMHO Finland in June and early July is one of the best places to be in the whole world.   Given their long, dark winters they take full advantage of the sunlight, and just go with it and have fun.  We arrived a few days after Juhannus (Summer solstice), and jumped into the party that was already in full swing.

We partied 'till the sun came up, and were home by 1:00 am.  I've never seen a city bustle that late anywhere else- even New York at 2:00 am on a Sunday is pretty much a ghost town.  Helsinki feels like it's just warming up at that hour.  I love it.  

So, Summer- ice cream, refreshing beverages and Finland.

By the way.there's also a couple of gumballs on the site.  Version 4 of the primer- in reality it's at least version 50 (I stopped counting literally years ago), and I've tweaked this as much as I'm going to tweak it.  Hopefully you'll love it, and if you don't- I'll most likely scrap the project for the time being.  It's as close to the original gumball version as I can get.

The other gumball is a new version of the cream liner  The version that's on the site right now uses a special kind of wax that is no longer sold- so I didn't have a choice.  We have to reformulate.  This version is vegan, and slightly different from what we shipped out in the MAC packages.  I backed-off on the wax ever so slightly so it's creamier and easier to apply.

Kippis (to your health)!  Kiitos (thank you)! and Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Yippee Winners!!!! And a few fun announcements...

It's been a fun week at SN- we're chugging along with all sorts of projects.  This week we started something new!  We're putting together some of our favorite looks, and offering them as a bundle on the site with a bit of a discount.  I'm super excited about this project- Susan, Val, Jen, and Thea will be helping out, so hopefully you'll get a nice variety of looks.  They'll run from Friday to Friday, and then we'll change it out with a new look. 

I'll admit that I didn't put a lot of prior planning in on this project- I just woke up on Thursday, and went with it.  That's kind of the fun part!  For the moment, we're focusing on eye shadows, but as it evolves it could grow to include just about anything.  With over 700 products we have quite a bit to choose from.

Questions, comments, ideas for looks you'd like to see, etc. are very welcome!

The Snow Day contest was over last night, and we had quite a few winners!  The official snow total, as measured on my sidewalk was 9.5 inches.  There were a lot of places around us that got pummeled pretty hard- with totals up to 2 feet in places, but at my house it was 9.5 inches.

I added a margin of error of 2 inches, and we had a total of 9 winners.  They are:
Kinjal S
Colleen W
Betty V
Monica W
Al P
Nina X
Kristi G

Congratulations!  I emailed you all the coupon code this morning :)

Monday, March 7, 2011

I'm Ready for Spring...How About You????

We had another snow day this morning.  There wasn't much of a choice because this time they actually closed the roads for part of the day.  As I was shoveling my car out of the driveway for what feels like the millionth time this year, I actually started having fantasies of using a flame thrower to just melt the snow.  I'm pretty sure I'd just mess things up royally with one, but it was a fun thought.

The cool part about this awful Winter that we've all been having is that I spent a lot of time inside, and working on the web site.   We added filters to the colors, so you can pick and sort through all of the products to hopefully find just the right products for you.  Special props to Jen on this project because she did a lot of the data entry, and that wasn't an easy project.

While I was sorting through the colors on the site I really took a good look at them with a critical eye.  The shelves in the eye shadow area are full, so it was time to either remodel the shop, or discontinue a few colors.  Normally we try very hard not to discontinue items, but once every few years a nice spring cleaning is in order.  There are also a few that I literally can't make anymore because the pigments have been discontinued.  So, all of the eye shadows we're discontinuing are in the "Last Chance" section of the web site and we'll keep them there through the end of the week.

Other than that odd bit of sorta not fun news things are chugging along in the shop.  I've been doing the annual round of taxes and paperwork.  We've just renewed the lease on our office for another year, and I'm thrilled about that.  It's a great shop, and if you're ever in Trumansburg stop by!  We're also gearing up to Spring, and we've been working on a few special projects.  I'll have more info on them in the coming weeks- but MAC girls, you're in for a fun treat- I think.

We used to hold quite a few contests, and I'd love to get back to we're starting with a guess how much snow I have at my house contest.

This is a picture of my little VW Bug in the driveway this morning.  On Saturday it was 51- so all of the snow you see fell on Sunday night, and into this morning.  We measured the snow on our sidewalk, and if you guess the right amount to the nearest half inch you win a $5 gift certificate to Silk Naturals!

Send your guess to  All entries need to be received by Friday March 11 at 11:59 pm eastern standard time (so just before midnight on Friday night).

I was checking out our Facebook page today with all of the other contest entries, and I just want to say a big giant THANK YOU for entering, and for all that you do to support SN.  They were a joy to read, and it was a ton of fun.  We really appreciate you, and you make coming to work really fun.   If anyone has any other ideas for contests just let me know!

By the way....we've been trying to do more with Facebook lately.  It's been a fun way to get to see all of you, and read little posts here and there.  If you're not already a fan please look us up!  

Oh, and what would you like to see for Spring??  Go ahead and post to the comments, or tuck your answer into your contest entry :)

Monday, January 17, 2011

A New Contest!

Happy New Year!  I hope you had a wonderful holiday, and are somewhere keeping warm.  It's about 10 degrees here today, and I stayed warm by making some new products!

We're plugging away on the Valentine's collection- there are a lot of new products, and some really fun hair care items that I think you're going to love.  I'm not 100% sure when it will be live- we're shooting for late this week, but it's always touch and go during the wind-up to the release. 

As soon as it's live on the site we'll post it on Facebook, and announce it on our forum.

Speaking of Facebook- we're having a new contest.  To enter, just go to Facebook, and list your favorite 3 products.  We'll use a random number generator to choose the winners.  The prize???  A $5 gift certificate to Silk Naturals.

To enter go to our Silk Naturals Page, and post on our wall.  The contest ends Wednesday January 19 at 11:59 pm eastern standard time, and we'll announce the winners the next day.

Good Luck!!!