Test Driving the Brit Celeb Makeup Artist’s Line at Selfridges


I had a mission in London. The beauty industry had been buzzing about celeb makeup artist Charlotte Tilbury’s new line. The mascara was said to be next level. The concealer able to camouflage a decadent night of partying. And, the Wonder Glow Primer able to deliver a lit-from-within effect that filled in wrinkles creating an anti-aging optical illusion. With a cadre of celeb clients that range from Kate Moss, Victoria Beckham and the new Mrs. Clooney, I was intrigued. Especially because this makeup is tough to find stateside.


I hightailed it over to Selfridges and challenged the talented Oliver Simpson to transform my fatigued complexion into something resembling Sienna Miller. The counter was MOBBED. We found a stool and got to work. Charlotte’s Magic Cream infused my jet-lagged visage with verve,  brightening the complexion and adding a dewy glow. Next, the Wonder Glow Primer evened out my skin tone. The foundation added another level of luminosity. I have a zillion blushes at home. But, I found the Cheek to Chic Swish & Pop Blusher alluring. The effect was sun kissed and natural. Finally, what girl can resist a lip gloss at the end of the day? We finished the look with a moisturizing swipe of Sweet Stiletto Lip Lustre.


I may not be Sienna Miller, but, damn, I felt good!

Light Wonder Foundation: $45, Nordstrom + Wonder Glow Primer: $55, Nordstrom

Here’s what I bought:

paris '15 blog 4 copy

Magic Cream Moisturizer, $100, Nordstrom + ‘Cheek to Chic’ Swish & Pop Blush: $40, Nordstrom

paris '15 blog post copy

‘Lip Lustre’ Lip Lacquer: $22, Nordstrom + ‘The Retoucher’ Conceal & Treat Stick: $35, Nordstrom

Paris Blog Post '15 2 copy

Makeup artist Oliver Simpson & Amy Tara Koch at the Charlotte Tilbury in Selfridges

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

  • Digg
  • Del.icio.us
  • StumbleUpon
  • Reddit
  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • RSS


As we all eagerly wait the arrival of the royal baby, one thing we know for sure. Kate will be prepped to the nines with every comfort possible for her special delivery. So, what does every woman need to channel the creature comforts of a royal delivery?

A due date is an educated guess. To be completely prepared for D Day, have your hospital bag packed and ready by week 32. it will give you a semblance of order and control. consider your needs: The room will be freezing and dry. The food will be gross. There will be no Ritz-Carlton amenities in the bathroom. And you might be there longer than you think. Make your quarters and yourself comfortable with little touches from home. A cozy cashmere shawl or blanket is soothing for the hours of labor you may endure. Thick socks are a must. Your feet will be exposed in the stirrups and can get really cold. A robe that smells like home for the day after delivery is comforting. have a great-smelling cream on hand for after the delivery; it will feel great and minimize the antiseptic smell of the hospital. Make a delivery-specific playlist for your iPod or burn a few CDs with your favorite chill-out music. it’s fun to be able to remember the exact song that was playing when you gave birth. A nice neutral lip gloss instantly prettifies a tired postpartum visage.

• A printed list of who to call from the hospital with big news. if you want to e-mail pics, have e-mail addresses already loaded into your computer.
• A cozy cashmere shawl or blanket from home to snuggle in during the early stages of labor and after delivery. Delivery rooms are freezing.
• Bottled water and snacks for post-delivery.
• Tootsie pops help with delivery. You cannot eat or drink once delivery starts, so a few sucks in between contractions supply the body with enough sugar to keep pushing.
• Makeup.
• Lip balm.
• Moisturizer for your face and body. Did i mention that the room is super-dry?
• Make two cds, one for each stage of delivery: dilation and delivery. Ambient yoga music and soft-rock for dilation and classic rock for pushing.
• Camera.
• Granny undies (to house the diaper-like pads you will be sporting on the drive home).
• Loose outfit to wear home.
• Gifts for your nurses. They work hard and really appreciate the gesture. (Like Vosges chocolate)

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

  • Digg
  • Del.icio.us
  • StumbleUpon
  • Reddit
  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • RSS


With the spate of maternity and new mom gear on the market, it is easy to get overwhelmed. So, I took a swan dive through the marketplace and selected a few must have products to help you-and your new baby-look and feel your best. Believe me, the smallest details make the world of difference.

1. SMART STASH: emergency diapers at the ready
Diaper Buds $5.99 for 8ct.

2. DROOL WORTHY: four chic bibs in one, perfect for busy parents and stylish kids
Bebe Au Lair Quib Bibs $14

3. MATERNITY MOXIE: Must-have pregnancy kit with luxe pampering essentials
Citrus Lane Pregnancy Pampering Kit curated by Amy Tara Koch $65

4. NEW RULES!: Dr. Laura Jana’s comprehensive guide for new parents
Heading Home With Your Newborn by Laura A. Jana & Jennifer Shu

5. SLEEP SAVVY: Guru Dr. Marc Weissbluth shows you how to get baby to stack Zs
Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child by Marc Weissbluth

6. HEAVEN SCENT: The safest lavender-spiked cleanser for pregnancy
Belli Skincare Pregnancy Body Wash $15

7. BOOBY TRAP: Is it a bottle? A breast? Tough to tell and that’s a good thing
Mimijumi Not So Hungry bottle $13.99

8. AU COURANT CAR SEAT: The most adorable, safe, easy to carry  infant car seat
Britax Chaperone Carseat

9. GREAT CHOICE: Cord blood banking equals parental peace of mind
Viacord Cord Blood Banking

10. NURSING NIRVANA: Where (breastfeeding) fashion meets function
Leading Lady Nursing Lace Bra $31

11. PREGGO PANTIES: Sexy. Sexy. Sexy.
Belabumbum Maternity Lace Boyshorts $29

12. STROLL IN STYLE: Super stylish, lightweight stroller
Baby Cargo Stroller $150

13. HEDGE ON THE WEDGE: Get out of the preggo dumps in these sustainably sourced kitten heel wedges that come with seven ribbons to transform your look
Mohop Shoes Mid Cherry Peep toe $164

14. MOLTO MAXI: A smooth-as-silk maternity dress that can be dressed up or down in a snap
Ingrid & Isabel Athena Maxi Dress $148

15. FLIRTY & FABULOUS: The genius “Momshell” dress is perfect for pregnancy and beyond
More of Me Maternity Momshell Dress $170

16. SWELL STYLE: Jumpers are on trend. Hatch’s version accommodates a burgeoning bump and can be worn-belted-after baby
Hatch Maternity Jumper $258

17. SLEEK & CHIC: A black stretch camisole bodysuit perfectly flatters a pregnant body
Bashful Bump Maternity Camisole Bodysuit $44

18. SPACE SAVER: Rollable bibs are great for the on-the-go mom
Tommee Tipee Easy Roll Bibs $6.99 2pk

19. PURE RELEIF: Cootie free skin cream to naturally relieve baby’s eczema and assorted skin irritations
Episencial Soothing Cream $10.99

20. THE SKINNY: Destination Maternity translates the colored denim trend seamlessly into maternity with their secret fit belly.
Joe’s Jeans for Destination Maternity Chelsea Secret Belly Fit in Lollipop $185

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

  • Digg
  • Del.icio.us
  • StumbleUpon
  • Reddit
  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • RSS


What do pregnant women want for Christmas? GLAMOUR! With the basketball bulge of a belly, a great holiday gift is something that injects maternity moxie to that nine month fashion challenge called “pregnancy.”  My BUMP IT UP gift guide is filled with stylish gear designed to make her look and feel great.     

1. Bobbi Brown Lip Gloss Trio

2. Spanx Power Mama Tights

3. Belli Pregnancy: Complexion Perfection Duo

4. Destination Maternity: Storksak Jools Diaper Bag

5. Kara Ross Drusy Resin Cuff

6. Ingrid & Isabel BellaBand

7. Hatch by Two Birds Wrap Dress

8. Mr. & Mrs: Labor & Delivery Survival Kit

9. Mama Mio Beat the Heat Bump It Up Pregnancy Style Kit


Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

  • Digg
  • Del.icio.us
  • StumbleUpon
  • Reddit
  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • RSS

10 things to GLAMMIFY your pregnancy

1. Must have info to stay out of the preggo dumps!
BUMP IT UP: Transform your Pregnancy into the Ultimate Style Statement $15

2. Combat stretch marks
MAMA MIO Tummy Rub Stretch Mark Oil $35

3. Relieve foot pain
BELLI Foot Relief Cream $18

4. Sweet relief for hemorrhoids
TUCK’S cooling hemorrhoid pads $7.99

5. BFF for trimesters 1 & 4: helps keep bottoms up as belly morphs
BELLABAND by Ingrid & Isabel $30

6. Footwear Fabulosity: insoles to make wearing heels a breeze
FOOT PETALS Stiletto Stylist Kit for Moms $44.95

7. A chic stretch belt is essential to create a flattering empire waist silhouette

8.  Seamless support maternity undies
BELEVATION support panty $20

9. Get your glow on
ZOE ORGANICS glowing face and body wash (paraben free) $16

10. Stay high and mighty: all hosiery, bulge-defying bra
SPANX Bra-llelujah all hosiery comfort bra $36

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

  • Digg
  • Del.icio.us
  • StumbleUpon
  • Reddit
  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • RSS



The baby shower is a curious event. It is often at this moment  that moms- to- be are subtly notified that they-the stars of this infant making production-take back seats to their child . Each and every gift- onesies, feeding utensils, booties and receiving blankets are for the baby. And, mamma (this bizarre put –on- the- back- burner feeling is a precursor to life as a mom) is ignored. So, if you really want to make a mom-to-be happy, offer up something that will  make her feel beautiful, sexy and pampered.

Pish Posh Mommy: Pull String Valencia Bag, $34.99

“Pish posh mommy carry alls are a must-have for Type-A women who crave organization tout le temps. Versatile and chicm these printed carryalls–complete with a pull string pouch, a diaper clutch, a fold up diaper pad, a ‘wet bag’ for bathing suits or soiled clothes–can be dropped into my pures, my beach bag ot just plopped in the car”

The Belly Bandit, $55.95

Wearing a compression garment like The Belly Bandit  for 6-8 weeks after childbirth helps reduce uterine swelling and bloating. Celebs like Angelina Jolie, Gwen Stefani and Halle Berry rave about this modern day girdle (www.bellybandit.com) which comes in 5 sizes and three styles (I love zebra!).  


Belli Pregnancy: Complextion Perfection Duo, $34.00


 Get radiant with BELLI SKINCARE’s (free of chemicals, parabens and dyes) genius complexion duo which exfoliates, moisturizes, protects and evens out skin tone. A mama-to-be must have!

Belly Button Boutique: Mom’s First Days Kit, $70

Coming home from the hospital after giving birth is painful. Literally. Belly Button Boutique’s MOMS FIRST DAY kit has all of the essentials –cooling breast soothers, nursing pads, hipster panties, Feme pads-to keep a new mom (relatively) comfortable

MAMA MIO: Beat the Heat Bump It Up Pregnancy Style Kit, $75.00


Mama Mio’s Pregnancy specific skincare products go that extra mile to ensure that products are free from synthetic colors, parabens, sulfate detergents, petrochemicals and a host of known irritants. Developed by a triumverate of British supermamas, Mama Mio has put a playful spin on the woes of maternity with “Boob Tube” Bust Cream, “Tummy Rub” stretch Mark butter and “Lucky Legs”. And, the kit comes with a copy of my book!

You Lingerie: Azalea Orchid Bra, $ 29.99 and Panties, $14.99

Channel your inner sexpot with YOU maternity and nursing lingerie unique features include: 

-Soft cups ( no underwire) to accomodate size and aid in prevention of breast infection

-discreet one handed maternity nursing clips

-4 hook back allow added length for expanding rib cages


 Ms. and Mrs. Labor and Delivery Survival Kit, $45.00

A collection of delivery room essentials to soothe and support mom on D DAY: disposable camera, lip balm, stopwatch, back massager, etc.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

  • Digg
  • Del.icio.us
  • StumbleUpon
  • Reddit
  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • RSS

COVER UP: Best bets for safe and effective sunscreen for moms and kids

Summer =  fun in the sun.  And while tis the season of outdoor diversion, terror lurks in the form of skin cancer. With over 2 million people diagnosed annually, sun protection is imperative.  But, what many don’t know is that not all sunscreens are created equally.

A product with broad spectrum protection and without harmful chemicals is essential.   WHY? In contrast to many common sunscreens that only protect from UVB waves, “broad spectrum” blocks dangerous UVA waves as well.  The other component to safe and effective sun protection is scrutinizing the ingredients and avoiding preservatives like parabens and phthalates which can be absorbed through the skin to accumulate into the bloodstream.

Of course there are many incredible designer sunscreens, but you don’t need to spend the big bucks for an effective product.  Brands like Nature’s Gate, Alba Bontanica and Kiss My Face are inexpensive and just as effective as designer brands.

CONFUSED? Don’t be.  Here’s your crash course in sunscreenology and my best bets.


SPF: Sun Protection Factor, rating applied to only UVB rays.  The higher the SPF does not mean you can stay out in the sun that much longer.  For example, SPF 15 means it blocks all but 1/15 of UVB meaning you are about 93% covered for those rays. The difference between SPF 30 and SPF 60 is just an extra 2% of coverage.

UVA: Makes up 95% of UV radiation reaching the Earth’s surface, less intense than UVB but penetrates deeper in the skin to the dermis.

UVB: UV radiation that hits the top layer of skin, epidermis, responsible for sunburn and any skin reddening. The most significant amount of UVB hits the U.S. between 10 AM and 4 PM from April to October.

Broad spectrum: Look for sunscreen boasting broad spectrum,-multi spectrum or UVA/UVB protection to ensure defense against both types of UV radiation.

Parabens: A synthetic preservative that can be found in shampoos, moisturizers, shaving gels, cleansing gels, topical pharmaceuticals and toothpaste.  According the Environmental Working Group (EWG), parabens can disrupt the hormone system, and were found in the breast cancer tumors of 19 of 20 women studied.

Phthalates: A chemical compound called “plasticizers” making PVC and found in nail polish, shampoos, detergents, hair spray, toys, food packaging and much more. Like parabens, phthalates hinder the endocrine system.


SUNSCREEN FOR ADULTS: all of the following products have broad spectrum coverage and are free of parabens, phthalates, fragrance, nano-technology and chemicals

SKINCEUITICALS PHYSICAL FUSION: $30, SPF 50, universal tint that evens skin tone, high UVA protection, protects against collagen damage, water and sweat resistant, does not clog pores, features plankton extract, J.Lo is a fan!

BELLI ANTI-CHLOASMA FACIAL SUNSCREEN: $24, SPF 25, Pregnancy-friendly ingredients, lightly tinted to blend with all skin types, oil free, may be worn alone or under makeup

Belli skincare sunscreen ATK

KATE SOMERVILLE SERUM SUNSCREEN: $45, SPF 55, oil/alcohol free, can be used daily for oily or problematic skin, does not leave skin feeling chalky, sticky or greasy, celeb clients include Christina Aguilera, Katy Perry and Selma Blair

Kate somerville sunscreen serum

ALBA BOTANICA NATURAL SUNBLOCK: $9.95, SPF 30+, certified organic sunflower seed and jojoba seed oils, aloe vera and calendula moisturize and nourish skin, 100% vegetarian ingredients, grape seed oil and vitamin E provide antioxidant protection

alba botanica sunscreen ATK

NATURE’S GATE MINERAL SPORT BLOCK: $9.99, SPF 20, Seaweed extract revitalizes, milk thistle extract soothes and Mimosa bark extract repairs and protects.

natures gate sunscreen

KISS MY FACE, FACE FACTOR: $12.95, SPF 30, water resistant, helps reduce wrinkles with UVA/UVB protection, great for sensitive skin

SUNSCREEN FOR KIDS: products below are water resitant

EPISENCIAL SUNNY SUNSCREEN: $14.99, SPF 35, Free of Petroleum/hormones/gluten/nut oils, manufactures with solar power, organic sesame, safflower and avocado oils to moisturize and nourish the skin

DR.ROBIN: $24, SPF 30, quinoa and oat protection for soothing hydration and green tea extract to help prevent free radical damage, Used by Celeb Moms–Debra Messing and Jennifer Garner

Dr Robin Chemical Free Sunscreen for Kids and Babies

KISS MY FACE NATURAL MINERAL SUNBLOCK LOTION: $14.99, SPF 30+, retains SPF after 30 minutes of activity in water, Gluten free, Natural ingridients include aloe, sunflower oil, green tea, shea butter, carrots, mushrooms and olive oil

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

  • Digg
  • Del.icio.us
  • StumbleUpon
  • Reddit
  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • RSS


The Bump it Up Style Solutions Tour landed in Chicago last weekend to collaborate with Bump Club Chicago at the fabulous Peggy Notebaert Museum in Lincoln Park

Amy Tara Koch, Bump it Up Style Lounge Chicago

Mamas, Papas, Preggos & kids waiting for the festivities to begin

Amy Tara Koch Bump it Up Style Lounge Chicago

Women tuning in to my styling sessions with ISABELLA OLIVER clothing and talking pregnancy beauty with BELLI SKINCARE’s major duumo Annette Rubin.

Amy Tara Koch, Bump It Up Style Lounge

I show a woman how a form fitting ruched t-shirt + long necklace + leggings = bump it up perfection. All clothing is Isabella Oliver

Amy Tara Koch, Bump It Up style Lounge

Channeling a distinct Parisienne vibe with fab Isabella Oliver Breton boyfriend cardigan

Amy Tara Koch, Bump It Up style Lounge

A pop of color in the shape of a drapey scarf is a Bump it Up staple!

MATERNITY MOXIE: Isabella Oliver Clothing

(As worn by Natalie Portman, Selma Blair, Angelina Jolie, Jessica Alba, Gwen Stefani, Sophie Dahl, Naomi Watts, Minnie Driver and Jennifer Lopez)

Amy Tara Koch, Bump it Up Style Lounge Chicago

EYE CANDY: Awesome accessories +fabulous cupcakes supplied by MORE

Amy Tara Koch, Bump it Up Style Lounge Chicago

Founder of Belli Skincare- Annette Rubin – offers custom skin consultations and explains how critical it is to avoid “contra-indicated” ingredients during pregnancy.

Belli Skincare is the only skincare in the world that is teratology screened–which rules out any ingredients that are remotely linked to birth defects or any other developmental problems that might occur during pregnancy.

Amy Tara Koch, Bump It Up style Lounge

Mommy must have? I adore  PishPosh Mommy print carry-alls, wet bags and diaper clutches to keep mom organized and chic

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

  • Digg
  • Del.icio.us
  • StumbleUpon
  • Reddit
  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • RSS

Stylin’ in Haute-lanta: Bump It Up Style lounge goes south!

I transform part of the legendary Fox Theater into the Bump It Up Style Lounge featuring Belli Skincare, Isabella Oliver Maternity and Pish Posh Mommy.

ATK Bump It up Lounge Child and Baby Expo Atlanta

The Bump It Up Lounge in Atlanta at the Child and Baby Expo with Pish Posh Mommy, Isabella Oliver and Belli Skincare.

Godiva Chocolate and accessories–what could be sweeter?

Isabella Oliver clothing (from top left, clockwise)
I style guests with go-to celeb maternity brand, Isabella Oliver, and show them how to look like  long, lean, baby making machines.

The key to staying organized as a mom?
PISH POSH MOMMY’S chic Carry-alls!

Belli Skincare, ATK, Bump it Up style Lounge Atlanta, Child and Baby Expo

Bethany Fite of Belli Skincare gives customized skin consultations to preggos

I take the stage to congratulate  Desiree Miller on creating the impressive Baby and Child Expo

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

  • Digg
  • Del.icio.us
  • StumbleUpon
  • Reddit
  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • RSS

Some out of the box gift ideas for mom’s day

Speaking On behalf of groovy moms everywhere—we have worked hard all year and now it is time for family members to prove your devotion to us. No hint—no get…


Amy Tara Koch, Bump it Up and Vosges Chocolat

I teamed up with Chicago’s most famous chocolatier Katrina Markoff to create Mama’s Chocolat Gift Tower, a chocolate kit based on pregnancy cravings: spicy, fruity, savory.cheesy—it has it all. Style advice and a stash of the perfect chocolates


Cupcakes? For breakfast? Deconstruction is the name of foodie Patty Rothman’s game and she is a master at profiling intense flavors and Willy-Wonkifying them into savory cupcakes that skew more entrée than dessert. For Mom’s day she offers Breakfast in Bed squeezed into a delicious cupcake: Bacon/Maple, Cappuccino, Cinnamon roll, Passion. National delivery available!


CHEAP & CHIC way to prove your love—free coupons good for room cleaning, breakfast in bed, dish washing, hugs and more!

GROOVY ACCESSORY: Sequin NYC Enamel Cuff Bracelet

Sequin NYC Enamel Cuffs

Peek at magazines and shops and it is easy to see that tis the season of the accessory. What’s hot? Attention grabbing cuffs that add a dash of flash to basic ensembles.

FULLY LOADED iPAD2 or iPOD TOUCH: W/ Stress Relieving Apps For Moms

Yoga App

Apps designed to make mom’s life less chaotic
myMeditation, $2.99
Yoga STRETCH, 99 cents
Grocery Gadget, $4.99
Red Laser, Free


MIRACLESUIT flamenco_red

There is an inimitable dread every mom feels about swimsuit shopping. Take the anxiety out of mom’s summer by proffering her a stylish suit designed with slimming and shaping technology to make her look 10 pounds thinner!

MAKE UP PALETTES: Bronzer? Check. Illuminating powder? Check. Gel liner? Berry stain lip glosses a plenty? Check.

smashbox mega palette

Get your glam on with this all-in-one kits used by red carpet fashionistas

STILA E! Red Carpet—Stunning Starlet, $25 /Glamour Goddess, $25

SMASHBOX Mega Palette, $59


Isabella Oliver Boyfriend Cardigan

The nautical sweater is the knit du jour for spring/summer. The length of this Isabella Oliver version makes it supremely versatile and  perfect for leggings, shorts, jeans or a dress
Isabella Oliver Breton Boyfriend Cardigan, $139


The pure, anti-inflammatory ingredients in BELLI products exfoliate and keep skin uber hydrated.
Belli Head-to-toe Essential Kit, $100

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

  • Digg
  • Del.icio.us
  • StumbleUpon
  • Reddit
  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • RSS