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Exclusive: Los Angeles' Debbie Matenopoulos on the "surprise" cancellation of Hallmark's Home & Family

Heather Newgen

Debbie Matenopoulos has successfully maintained a career as a host, journalist, and best-selling cookbook author for over two decades. The Los Angeles based mom has had several high profile jobs like co-host of The View, Good Day Live in LA, a number of shows at E!, and her longtime stint at Hallmark's Home & Family alongside Cameron Mathison, which was recently shockingly canceled.

"As you can imagine after nine years being on the most magical show on television I was gutted. In my opinion, there is not a better team, cast, crew, production, or show on TV than the show we created for nearly a decade. Our main goal on Home & Family was to make people at home feel good about themselves, help them better their lives, and spread positivity and kindness. So needless to say my heart was broken along with the one hundred and fifty other people who worked on set," Matenopoulos exclusively told News Break.

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Debbie Matenopoulos with her new skincare line Ikaria BeautyIkaria Beauty

She added, "We were not given an official reason either, which makes it cut even deeper. After the year we all experienced in quarantine due to COVID I believe the world needed our show more than ever. Our world has been in a state of disarray for the last few years. Home & Family was a safe haven, a respite from the rest of the noise pollution on television. I believe we were a show that could help with the healing process that our world needs so badly. Given that we had the highest ratings we have ever had in our nine year run this year, the fact that we have been nominated for numerous Emmys, and to the best of my knowledge were very lucrative for the network due to our ability to create revenue through endless integration opportunities, it came as a huge shock."

Although the pandemic did make things challening, Matenopoulos explained she thought the Home & Family, which is filmed on the Universal Lot in Los Angeles, would go on.

"Upon our reentry after COVID, our show had been cut from two hours to one hour a day and only three days a week versus five. However, we were still being assured up until the last few months that we would continue. So yes, we were a bit surprised."

While the five-time Emmy nominated TV personality has "some cooking shows in the works," and "big things coming," she's also staying busy with her new skincare line Ikaria Beauty that was launched earlier this year.

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Ikaria Beauty BalmIkaria Beauty

"I have had skin allergies my whole life and have spent thousands of dollars trying to find something that did not irritate my skin. I could never find anything that worked so I looked to my roots and decided to create something similar to the skincare routines my Greek relatives have been using for centuries."

Matenopoulos pays homage to Greek hertiage with Ikaria Beauty, which the entire line is based on.

"For centuries women in Greece and the Mediterranean have been using natural products from the area that are incredibly effective to keep their skin looking youthful, vibrant, and healthy. If you look at the people who live in that part of the world you will notice they look decades younger than they actually are, despite spending so much time in the sun.They also live much longer healthier lives than most other people around the world," she said.

The blond beauty continued, "What Ikaria offers that's unique is using natural ingredients to achieve the same or better results as chemical ones. For example, the Ikaria Renew daytime retinol serum uses a cool, plant-based ingredient called Bakuchoil that's a natural alternative to traditional retinol. So it delivers the anti-aging effects without the drying and irritation of regular retinol products. And of course, I'm proud that my skincare line honors my Greek heritage in moniker and ingredients - there's not too many Greek-facing skincare lines out there!"

The popular TV host spends hours in full makeup and revealed she's had skin irritations as a result.

"For years I tried unsuccessfully to do so. Therefore, I spent hours at the dermatologist office and purchased every product that claimed to be healing and non irritative. Guess what? None of them worked. After always coming up empty handed and frustrated I decided to create a calming facial mist and serum as well as my super moisturizing Beauty Balm. They are all packed with natural ingredients that one hundred percent absolutely work. I have to say I am really proud of the line we created and I know when other people try it they will love it as much as I do too."

As for who Ikaria Beauty is for, Matenopoulos said, "Everyone! My line does not discriminate against age, gender, or skin type. It benefits everyone. The ingredients are so clean that I even put the beauty balm on my six year old daughter's eczema.

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Heather Newgen has been reporting on the entertainment industry since 2004 and covers a variety of topics including travel, lifestyle, all things Hollywood related, fun things to do in and around LA and human interest stories. In addition, she travels the world volunteering and launched The Voluntourist in 2017 to inspire others to give back responsibly. She lives in Los Angeles with her dog Murphy, but you'll often find them in Joshua Tree on weekends. Follow her @iamthevoluntourist

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