A Night at the Pittsburgh Oscars

I fell into some incredible good fortune this past weekend. It all started on Thursday when I came across an Instagram from Pittsburgh-blogger Julie from Orchid Grey. She was giving away two tickets to Highmark's Lights! Glamour! Action! Oscar Party  to benefit the Pittsburgh Film Office. I entered and literally spent the rest of the day daydreaming about it. I know, I'm a nerd. Fast forward to Friday and I found out I actually won! I never win anything, especially not contests like these, so I was absolutely thrilled.

I spent the next day and a half in a whirlwind making arrangements and figuring out plans and doing several no-snow-storm dances--which WORKED! It was supposed to be absolutely horrible out, but it ended up working out just perfectly. I am so excited to share some of the "vendors" I was able to work with to prepare for this wonderful event.

My college roommate and BFF Ali was my date to the Oscars and we could not have been more excited to work with a new salon in the area: Style Out Bar. Stephanie and her team generously offered to do our hair for the event and they did a wonderful job. We both went the updo route, but Style Out also specializes in blow dry styles (straight, curly, or wavy!), professional makeup application, threading, and even color. Some Style Out salons even offer nail services. Check to see if your city has a Style Out Bar here.

Here's what we looked like BEFORE our makeovers (sorry, this is a picture-heavy post!):

Pittsburgh-Oscars-11Since Ali and I rarely ever pull our hair back in anything special, we decided to get updos. I asked for something that would take advantage of my texture and Ali wanted volume on top.

The ladies were so accommodating and fun to work with! We felt comfortable and pampered the entire visit. Style Out would be the perfect place to bring your girlfriends for a bachelorette party or girls' night out AND it would be a nice getaway for a "me" day.

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Style Out often offers different style packages that meet your budget. For example, on Wednesday and Thursday evenings, you can receive a blow-dry style, threading, AND lashes for $50. Check out their website for pricing, but be sure to tweet them, facebook message, call in, or stop by to see if there are any other deals. Tell them Marissa sent you :)

Here's some of our AFTER hair pictures: Pittsburgh-Oscars-8 Pittsburgh-Oscars-7

After we got our hair done, we headed to Macy's to the Clinique counter. Ali had recently picked up their 3-Step Process and was so pleased that she recommended we get our makeup done there. We are both SO glad we did. We were surprised that Clinique had a ton of youthful shades to choose from that would be perfect not only for daytime, natural looks but also for edgier, more formal occasions.

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Diane (Her friends call her "Di") from Clinique was absolutely amazing to work with. She was so friendly and helpful from the start, giving us practical and useful tips and suggestions without being pushy. She took as much time as she needed to give us her full attention and to pick the correct shades and formulas for our skin types, making us feel important and worthwhile. We had stopped by other counters on our way and those ladies were not interested in helping us or made us feel like just-another-customer; Di was the complete opposite.

We talked all things Oscars and blogging and makeup while we were at Clinique and had a blast. We weren't charged for our makeovers--something that is rare to find these days. It gave us the opportunity to try all of the products without feeling pressured. Now we BOTH want to make future purchases. That to me is a true sales experience.

Pittsburgh-Oscars-6 Pittsburgh-Oscars-4 Pittsburgh-Oscars-3(My stubborn hair required more pinning later in the evening!)

Ali opted for a gorgeous blue shadow and amazing eyeliner for her evening look. I was envious of her flawless skin, brought to life even more with bronzer and blush. Her makeup served as a nice compliment to her formal updo. I was kind of amazed at how the concealer and foundation really covered up my many blemishes (I didn't have to touch up my photos after the makeup!) and it actually lasted all evening without getting oily in the T-zone. WINNING. Di also helped my apply falsies that I received in my latest Influenster box from KISS. I had never worn such intense but beautiful eye makeup. I think I might be a Clinique convert now.

Even though the prices are a higher than most drugstore brands, I feel like it is worth it to have the right base and to have long-lasting, quality products. Thanks, Di! We appreciate all of your help! Be sure to stop by her counter at Ross Park Mall and let her know we sent you :)

After our makeovers, we headed home to eat, quickly change, and snap a few pictures before we left for the Oscars! It was already dark out, so our pictures were unfortunately inside and some didn't turn out well. :(

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Ali wore a beautiful satin-y blue dress from H&M, black tights, and a black shrug with some fun jewels. I wore a BCBG Max Azria dress (FROM GOODWILL, holla! Under $5!), black tights, and some simple silver drop earrings and a pearl bracelet.

The event was held at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh (where I had prom six years ago!) and it was stunning. We actually felt slightly underdressed compared to the many floor-length dresses and gowns and tuxedos others were sporting. Regardless, we were comfortable and felt great! We took photobooth pictures, ate food, satisfied our sweet tooth with Pittsburgh Candy Buffet candy, browsed the many silent auction items, and watched the Oscars on the big screen. It was abundantly clear that I have a HUGE list of movies I need to see now!

oscars collage.pngA Night at the Pittsburgh Oscars- Snaps from Instagram

All in all, it was a really wonderful day and I'm so grateful that I had the opportunity to go! I feel blessed to have had something fun to look forward to and I'm already seeing some positive changes now that I am back in town. If you want to know more about Style Out or Clinique, feel free to leave a comment or message me! Ali and I would be happy to share our experiences more in-depth.

Linking up to: Style Elixir's Style SessionsThe Pleated Poppy's WIWW,  Get Your Pretty OnBecause Shanna Said So's Random Wednesdays