Sherri Shepherd takes home swag from Kmart!
The swag you get when working as an actor or even as media, goes with the job. Actors receive thousands of dollars worth of swag, and of course those who provide the swag get kickback when the star promotes these products. It's a win-win situation!
I made my way through the winding maze that is the Hollywood and Highland Kodak Theatre, to meet Christopher, who would let me interview those celebrity gifters at the Gift Bag Lounge. Located in a smallish room, somewhere backstage, were numerous products along with the men and women who would tell us all about these products.
Brandon Beemer & Nadia Bjorlin with Vera Bradley loot!
I introduced myself to Melissa Cordial at the Vera Bradley
booth. Vera Bradley designs luggage, handbags, cosmetic cases and eyeglass cases and then some! The items are all colorful and very distinctive. I recalled an interview with Michelle Stafford a few months ago, in her limousine. I remembered that her luggage was very unusual and when I spoke to the ladies at the Vera Brady booth, I let them know that while I can't be anywhere near positive, it sure looked like it was Vera Bradley! I flashed to my own black luggage, decorated with a colorful ribbons so that they're easily found on the luggage carousel and wondered if I should change to the Vera Bradley design! They were giving away the Raspberry Fix large duffel and the actors were able to wander about the lounge with it, adding their goodies to it. (10 % of the proceeds of the sales go to breast cancer awareness.) The ladies told me that Christel Khalil (Lily Winters, Y&R) was thrilled to own a VB bag after using these products on the show! They've got 2500 stores across the nation, they tell me, but not in Toronto. Tsk tsk. I put the bug into their head, because their items are not only cute, the prices are incredible. Check out Vera Bradley Foundation for Breast Cancer
to make purchases and for the foundation, head over to Vera Bradley
. Much to my delight, Melissa was kind enough to give me a black and yellow change purse!
Heather Tom loves Lierac.. and her little dog, too!
I spoke with a rep for JOICO
, who curling a girl's hair while she told me about what they were gifting today. I am a fan of JOICO products already. I was happy to hear that not only were they gifting to the men, products from their new line, moisturizing conditioner, but that the women were getting a cute cosmetics bag and moisturizing conditioner. They were happy to tell me that they recently started a new skin care line and shower gels and have come out with a sunless tanner. The rep was kind enough to give me a sample of their new product re:nu AGE DEFY, which consists of pre-shampoo treatment and fullness and body shampoo. Love it, and I do plan on using it! I was told that One Life to Live beauties, Susan Haskell, Kassie DePaiva and Kristen Alderson were very excited to receive an exclusive preview of JOICO’s new Recovery Beauty line of hair care products.
Nadia Bjorlin tries out Skorcher!
I was surprised to see Kmart at the gift lounge because I haven't seen a Kmart in years. I guess it's not big here in Toronto? They actually had some cute colorful products for summer! Rebbecca (Events Marketing Manager) showed me a colorfully striped Martha Stewart towel that Sherri Shepherd (The View) decided to take to use on her trip to Costa Rica. Finola Hughes is a big fan of Kmart, she was wearing Kmart’s Joe Boxer brand underwear, she said. She'll be able to add to her collection, because she was given an array of summer outfits that were on display such as a short pajama sets, shorts and a silver clutch that a few of the actresses were interested in using for tonight's awards ceremonies. Rebbecca tells me, "Everyone gets everything." They're given a bag full of loot to take home, as well as a gift card to shop in the store, or online at Kmart.com
I came upon a medieval looking contraption that looked interesting and painful. They call it the Skorcher! Sure, that's how your butt feels when you use it! I met Bret Contreras (a certified strength and conditioning specialist) and Carrie Martz, the PR rep for the product. Bret is the inventor of this new exercise system that if used correctly will shape your butt within an inch of it's life. Every actor who has come into the Gift Lounge has taken one but Susan Lucci, who endorses the Malibu Pilates Chair. Kim Zimmer (Reva, GL) loved it, Actress Whoopi Goldberg, who has been into getting in shape lately loved it and took one, DAYS actress, Nadia Borjlin took one, AMC's Debbi Morgan loved it, as did Darnell Williams (Jesse). He is quoted as saying, "I want a butt and a core. I'm putting it in my dressing room. It's the best thing here!" It was impressive. I wanted to try it out but alas, there was no time! Kim Zimmer from Guiding Light. For those who are interested in buying, you can do 23 exercises on this and it retails for $299. An 'Xtreme version' will offer even more exercises at $649. Off the topic of Soaps, I was interested in hearing that Counting Crows lead singer is putting one of these on his tour bus! Want a tighter butt? Check out Skorcher.com!
I moved on, whispering to a rep from SAM-e
complete. This is a product that helps boost your mood. It's an all natural supplement that they tell me is found in your body. Those with lower amounts of SAM-e are said to benefit from this. The talent got a pack of supplements, along with a pair of slippers and complimentary massages. Jason Cook (GH) took some time out for an on-site massage and said he was familiar with the product. I was told that Susan Lucci, all dolled up in her Daytime Emmy attire, with hair and makeup done, came in for a massage! I guess since she was presenting, she needed to feel good and be relaxed for her presenting. Cameron Mathison (Ryan, AMC) was very interested in the massage, but when he came in yesterday, he didn't have time for one, so he rushed back today for one! I could have used one.
Susan Lucci signs a Nonni mug!
I wandered off and spoke with Jenna Muller, a rep with Lierac Paris. She says skin care centers and drug stores are launching Lierac Paris, who have launched a new collection of anti-aging skincare products in the USA. The line was created by a French physician and the rep showed me how the moisturizer penetrated skin in seconds, not leaving her skin greasy or slippery. Great for those who wear foundation or those who don't want to look greasy in the hot sun! Melody Scott Thomas of “The Young & the Restless” says “You always need eye cream!” while she scooped up some of the new Diopticreme. Jenna says they're gifting four of their inexpensive products, anti-wrinkle eye cream and moisturizers, and are giving away a complementary facial. Good deal - and one that Barbara Walters, Cameron Mathison (Ryan, AMC), Julie Berman and Anthony Geary (Both GH) couldn't pass up! Find Lierac Paris products at CVS, Duane Reade, and Eckerd drug stores, or online at Lierac.com
I spoke a few reps from Caravan Boutique, who were gifting the celebs with Bobi clothes, including dresses, cardigans, and hoodies for the guys. Barbara Walters came by and took a lovely cardigan, while Sherri Shepherd picked up several pieces for her Costa Rica and Las Vegas trips. Kim Zimmer liked a few pieces while Finola Hughes took and decided to wear her frock for practicing with SOAPnet. I was told that Debbi Morgan (AMC) picked out 10 pieces! They've got some cute stuff. Check them out at Shop Caravan.
Last but not least, I spoke with Tracey, from Nonnis Biscotti, who gave me what the stars got - a bag filled with boxes of biscotti in delicious flavors. (The actors also received a VIP card for biscottis for life!) In fact, I had one, earlier. Nonnis told me they were getting the actors to sign Nonni's mugs (Y&R's Daniel Goddard wrote "Let's find a cure.") They'll be auctioning them off in October. A portion of the proceeds go towards breast cancer awareness. Nonni’s work with Susan G. Komen was meaningful to Finola Hughes, she shared that her Mom passed away from breast cancer; she was really pleased to be able to help in some way! Get yourself some Nonnis and come back to Soaps.com before October, to find out where you can bid on a mug signed by your favorite star!