Welcome to The Australian Beauty Bloggers Weekend Awards 2011

As you all know, The Australian Beauty Bloggers Weekend was the brainchild of two fantastic  beauty bloggers, Jacie from You’ve Got Nail and Kimmi from The Plastic Diaries.  It was created to bring beauty bloggers from all over Australia together to meet and greet each other, to swap beauty blog business cards, to attend beauty events, to meet the people behind the beauty brands and to do what we do best – go gaga over beauty products!

In its debut year, ABBW was jam-packed full of events : the International Make-Up Artists Trade Show (IMATS), Beauty Directory event, Maxted Thomas PR Beauty Blogger Gala, Breakfast With Alpha-H, FACE OF AUSTRALIA Make-Up Masterclass and Keynote Speaker of ABBW 2011 was Bahar Etminan from Rescu.  I have to say that I enjoyed each event thoroughly and not one yawn was stifled!

85 Australian beauty bloggers were in attendance and we unanimously agree that ABBW 2011 was a resounding success, thanks to Jacie and Kimmi and the ever-so-generous sponsors!  *cue : round of applause*

I felt very blessed and very honoured to attend ABBW 2011 and call me weird, but it somehow reminded me of my dating days.  I was nervous, yet excited and it felt like a first date meeting the beauty bloggers I had admired from afar.  There were glimpses of online dating sprinkled in there too as I met beauty bloggers I had tweeted and formed an online friendship with for the last few months.  Blind date came to mind when we were introduced to people behind the brands.  Dolling up for the Gala event was almost like a prom date and when we went round checking out all the brands – Nivea, Burt’s Bees, Sebastian Professional, ORLY, Coty – I imagined it to be something similar to speed dating.

Everyone knows that a first date isn’t complete without post-analysis to relive the date and to choose your memorable moments and that’s why, after much deliberation, I give you The Australian Beauty Bloggers Weekend Awards 2011, as judged by yours truly.

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Most Informative Speaker At ABBW 2011

The winner is… Jackie Maxted, the CEO and Founder of Beauty Directory and Beauty Heaven.  Being relatively new to dealing with PR’s, from press releases to attending beauty events, I had no idea what was expected of me, so the talk from Jackie was very useful indeed as she gave us her top tips on how to deal with PR’s.  Basically, it’s important to be professional, polite and courteous.  The answers she gave at the panel discussion were also very insightful.

The close runner-up is Bahar Etminan, Editor of Rescu, who sparked controversy with her comments on hobbyist vs professional beauty bloggers – but I found her story very inspiring.

Most Stylish Female Speaker Award At ABBW 2011

The winner is… El Pendleton, Beauty Editor of Instyle magazine in Australia.  Not only is El stunning with every girl’s dream job, but the girl has style too with her casual chic look.  I love the cut out blazer she was sporting at the Beauty Directory event.

The close runner-up is Bahar Etminan, Editor of Rescu.  She was glam from head to toe with her beautifully coiffed hair to her sexy shoes.

Most Stylish Male Speaker Award At ABBW 2011

Ian

The winner is… Ian Thomas, the Managing Director of Maxted Thomas PR.  To be honest, the first thing I noticed about Ian wasn’t his smart attire, but it was the passion in his eyes.  Call me corny but I was really moved when Ian gave his speech.  He thanked us, the beauty bloggers, for the hard work we do in maintaining our beauty blogs and how this has helped women’s lives and impacted the beauty industry and it really motivated me to continue with beauty blogging.  When I first started beauty blogging, there were a few friends who laughed and teased me for doing this, but now I’m loud and proud to be a beauty blogger!

The close runner-up is Peter Vranes, the Managing Director of lapureté.  Their products are marketed as “nature’s alternative to Botox” and being a Botox user, I’m interested to see if it lives up to its claims, but meanwhile, I did not notice any wrinkles on Peter’s face and attire!

Favourite Make-Up Brand At ABBW 2011

The winner is… FACE OF AUSTRALIA.  Regular readers of my blog know that FOA is my favourite Australian drugstore cosmetic brand with products that work wonders at great prices.  Next on my FOA wishlist is the new lippies that will be launching soon.

The close runner-up is Mirenésse who kindly gifted all of us with products from their new Boutique M collection.

Favourite Skincare Brand At ABBW 2011

The joint winners are Alpha-H and Burt’s Bees.

With Alpha-H, I love their Gentle Daily Exfoliant so it was great to hear about their philosophy.  My skin did a happy dance when we were gifted Alpha-H Liquid Gold Skin Perfecting System to use.

I have to thank Burt’s Bees for making my skin feel and smell good with all the honey goodness.

Sexiest Scent Award At ABBW 2011

The winner is… L’Essence by Balenciaga.  Divine!  Absolutely divine.  It was love at first whiff!  I am not a huge  perfume lover so I can’t tell you what fragrance notes are what, but let me tell you that this baby smells delicious.  I’m putting this perfume on my Christmas wishlist and may I remind everyone that Christmas is less than ten weeks away!  However, knowing my Husband, it’ll be NEXT Christmas before he gets the hint!!

The close runner-up is Oh, Lola! by Marc Jacobs.  I am a sucker for pink products and the added benefit is that this scent smells young, fresh and flirtatious.

Best New Brand I Was Introduced To At ABBW 2011

The winner is… Royal & Langnickel.  If it wasn’t for ABBW, I would never have been introduced to Royal & Langnickel which produces high quality make-up brushes at extremely affordable prices.  Their stall at IMATS was packed full of people buying their products and I regret not buying more from them.  Royal & Langnickel were also very generous to the ABBW-ers and provided snacks, drinks, manicures and makeovers at a suite above IMATS and even gifted us a beautiful brush set from their collection.  The brushes are oh-so-soft!!!!

The close runner-up is ORLY with their gorgeous nail shades – I’m looking at you, Sweet Peacock!  Some beauty bloggers got to try out their new Gel FX manicure and the results are stunning.

Coolest Gadget At ABBW 2011

The joint winners are... Nivea Photobooth and Remington Perfect Curls.

The Photobooth supplied by Nivea was super-fun and produced photos which will forever be treasured.

Remington Perfect Curls is a fantastic hair tool which will be launched very soon – it’s a curling tong which produces beautiful curls without burning any fingers in the process and it’s pink!!  Fantabulous!

Yummiest Food At ABBW 2011

The one true winner is… the food at the Maxted Thomas PR Beauty Blogger Gala Event which was held in Establishment, Sydney.  Every beauty blogger I have met so far, appreciates food as much as they appreciate beauty products.  Many moons ago, when I registered for ABBW, I had mentioned that I was lactose intolerant and it was at this glorious event, I was served a delicious lactose-free, 3-course meal which was delightful with every mouthful.  Bellisimo!!!  So yummy that I just broke out with an Italian word meaning “beautiful” even though I didn’t consume anything Italian that night!  (Unfortunately I was suffering from the dodgy sushi I bought myself for lunch that day, so I didn’t eat all of the melt-in-your-mouth beef cheeks…but that’s another story for another day.)

Favourite Power Couple At ABBW 2011

The winners are…  Jacie and Kimmi.  Like, duh?!  Without their brains and beauty accompanied with blood, sweat and tears, ABBW would never have been born!  Everything was so well organised.  Thank you ladies for an “awesotastic” weekend!

The runners-up are Jackie Maxted and Ian Thomas.  They must have the most interesting conversations at dinner time with updates from Beauty Directory, Beauty Heaven and Maxted Thomas PR!  What a team!

Special Mentions At ABBW 2011

A special mention goes to all the beauty bloggers at ABBW 2011.  I can come across as shy and reserved, so forgive me if I didn’t get a chance to meet you.  But for those I spoke to, it was a great experience to know that we were all at ABBW 2011 for the same reason – because we love beauty blogging.

Last, but not least, another special mention goes to the Liz Giacco, the official photographer of ABBW 2011.  Everywhere we went, she papped us with what looked like a hefty but very gizmo-like camera with a gigantic lens, but she did it in a really stealthy manner.  I was really impressed and the highly professional images you see in this post were taken by Liz Giacco for The Australian Beauty Bloggers Weekend, and are not to be reproduced, republished or reused without the inclusion of this credit.  All the other non-pro photos were either taken by me or from Google and you can laugh at them if you wish.

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And that concludes The Australian Beauty Bloggers Weekend Awards 2011.  What an epic weekend!  Bring on ABBW 2012!!

Did you attend ABBW 2011?  Who would your winners be in the categories mentioned?