Posts Tagged ‘Beauty Routine’

The Best Beauty Trends (and the worst!) of 2010

Thursday, December 16th, 2010

Flickr user limonlucikolata

flickr user chicagophotoshop

2010 was a pretty beautiful year, literally speaking. Aside from a few missteps and casualties (Bump-its anyone? Jersey Shore-esque tans? Anything from the Taylor Momsen makeup bag?), this past year has ushered in some gorgeous new looks and brought relevance to retro trends as well. Below is a list of some of the best beauty trends 2010 had to offer.

  • Ombre Hair- Good news for those who despise the monthly trips to the salon for touch-ups! Perfectly maintained hair is out and ombre hair is in!  Celebs like Nicole Richie and Rachel Bilson started bucking the beauty rule of root maintenance this summer.
  • Retro hair- Think beehives, a la Scarlet Johanson, and Veronica Lake waves made popular by beauties such as Megan Fox and Angelina Jolie.
  • Cat eye makeup and winged eyeliner- A favorite of everyone from Lauren Conrad to the make up artists at fashion week, this easy-to-achieve look dominated the beauty pages in 2010.  With a steady hand and an easy-to-use liquid eyeliner (I prefer Hourglass Cosmetics Calligraphy Liquid Eyeliner) anyone can perfect this subtle, yet sexy come-hither look. Again, please remember, you are going for subtle, not Little J!
  • Pixie cuts- For the past couple months, stars have been chopping off their long locks one-by-one to reveal a gamine and gorgeous, yet classic do. Celebrities such as Michelle Williams, Ginnifer Goodwin, Carey Mulligan, Emma Watson, Elisha Cuthbert and Rihanna have all made the cut, literally. Beware though; this hair trend is not for everyone.
  • Braids- The braided hair style is my personal favorite look from this year. The mixture of simplicity and versatility, mixed with my laziness and unruly mane, has turned the braid into my go-to hair style.

The worst? There were some doozies! The aforementioned Bump Its, Oompa-Loompa tans, raccoon eye makeup, also snuggies, neon makeup and scraggly extensions (again, bad year for Taylor Momsen) … but the absolute worst beauty trend of 2010? Vajazzling!

Beautyfix Product Spotlight: Bioelements Sleepwear

Tuesday, December 14th, 2010

By Jenna

Routine can be a word to describe our sleep regimen at night. You get dressed for bed, brush your teeth, wash your face, hydrate your skin (hopefully) then climb into bed. What many don’t know is that time spent in slumber land is the perfect time to use an anti-aging cream as a wrinkle treatment. While you sleep, your body is hard at work in rejuvenation mode and there’s no better time to infuse your skin with anti-aging products. This season Beautyfix has given you an amazing anti-aging cream to use at night from Bioelements.

Source: Flickr User peasap

Sleepwear from Bioelements is an overnight rejuvenation treatment designed to infuse your complexion with a complex of topical calcium, time released retinol, protein peptides and cranberry seed oil. This formula supplies antioxidants, boosts collagen and elastin production, improves moisture retention and combats fine lines and wrinkles. It’s also somewhat exfoliating so your skin is working overtime during the night to help you get clear skin.  After cleansing your skin at night, warm a small amount between your fingertips and apply to your face and neck.

We are always on the search of clear skin and the products that will help achieve that. This is as easy as slipping into a silk nightie. My skin is sensitive, and for the most part pretty clear, but I’m very concerned about aging and will do everything to prevent wrinkles and fine lines. After using this product for a couple weeks, I’ve definitely noticed a difference in my complexion. Instead of breaking out with a few pimples because of the usual holiday stress, I haven’t at all! Every morning after using Sleepwear, my skin is soft and glowing. My complexion has definitely evened out a bit over the past few weeks as well. Because of sensitivity, I’ve been using it about 2-3 times a week and my skin does get red upon application, and then fades away by the morning. This product has an amount of retinol, so if you’re in the same boat as I am with sensitive or sensitized skin, I would recommend only using a couple times a week. For everyone lucky enough not to have sensitive skin, feel free to use more often at night. In my book, this product is a keeper and I’ll continue to use in the future. Using this for a few weeks will have your skin baby soft.

Working Overtime- Eye shadow can play almost every role in the makeup bag

Thursday, November 4th, 2010

Flickr user Jacklyn DL

As you might be able to tell from some of my other blog posts, I’m not exactly the biggest of beauty junkies. Don’t get me wrong, I do like makeup and feeling feminine but I simply detest spending time, energy and money on pampering. My makeup bag is pretty bare, not because I don’t need that much makeup, but because I have found my no-fail products that work double and sometimes triple duty- cutting down on clutter, cost and time. The MVP of my makeup bag? Eye shadow! There are so many different uses for eye shadow that with a few different shades and pigments, you could practically toss half of your beauty product arsenal! Read on to learn about them.

  1. Eyeliner- Eye shadow is a great substitute for actual eyeliner, plus there is a far greater selection of shades! Simply wet an angled or pointed brush, dip into your eye shadow and voila—custom eyeliner!
  2. Eyebrow pencil- Very similar to the previous tip, applying eyeliner, eye shadow may also be used as a great eyebrow pencil.
  3. Blush- Red and pink eye shadows are not the most popular shades, but if you happen to have a color that suites your skin tone (perhaps it came in an eye shadow palette with various colors) it can be a great blush.
  4. Lip gloss- Making lip gloss with eye shadow can be really fun and produce great results! Start with Vaseline on the back of your hand and start mixing in different shades of eye shadow until you create the perfect color
  5. Nail Polish- This use of eye shadow was news to me and I have yet to try it. However, one of my cosmetically gifted coworkers told me about this little trick and swears that it works wonderfully! Simply mix your favorite color of loose eye shadow with clear nail polish to create your desired shade. Try a vampy burgundy or purple, one of this winter’s hottest trends!

The Lazy Way to Clear Skin

Thursday, October 7th, 2010

A fellow beauty publicist recently asked me what my favorite products are, assuming that I have a slew of serums, shadows, lotions and skincare potions at my disposal.  While she was right, I do get to learn about, try and test tons of great products, I’m just not a beauty junkie. In fact, I actually have a confession to make—I hate washing my face, let alone following steps and applying the correct product to each specific area in the correct order. I know, I know, I should be ashamed to even post this on a beauty blog. Truth be told, my favorite beauty products are face wipesa lazy girl’s best beauty buddy.

Multitasking products are another great addition your skin care routine. They cut down on products and basically allow you to exert as little effort as possible. Below are a few items that perform double, or even triple, duty!

  • Jemma Kidd’s Cleansing Wipes actually have residence on my bedside table. The antioxidant-rich facial cleansing wipes are so easy to use! They are ultra soft and effectively remove makeup and dirt, while toning the skin and cleansing.
  • A moisturizer with spf provides daily sunscreen doses and also replenishes and provides the skin with essential nutrients- if you can find one with a tint, such as Dermalogica’s Sheer Tint Moisture with SPF 15, then you even cut out a makeup step!
  • Pevonia Botanica’s Gentle Exfoliating Cleanser gently exfoliates and thoroughly eliminates dead cells, sebum, toxins and impurities without being too abrasive.
  • A colleague of mine and all around beauty buff, swears by iQ Derma’s Clear Remedy Purifying Cleanser, insisting that it cleanses, removes all her makeup and is specially formulated to help prevent breakouts.

Longer Lashes in the Blink of an Eye

Friday, September 17th, 2010

I, like most women, love the look of luscious, long eyelashes. (Wouldn’t we all love to walk around every day with Kim K’s stunning lashes?)  Although, due to clumsiness, laziness and lack of time, I rarely make an effort.  My unsteady hand generally results in mascara on my nose and eyeliner smudged on my lid and cheek (don’t even ask how it gets there, I have no clue). Fake eyelashes? Please, there is NO WAY I trust myself with eyelash adhesive around my eye region.  I toyed with the idea of trying a product such as Latisse or RapidLash—but I don’t want to deal with a prescription and both of these products contain Prostaglandin, which can alter the color of your eye. Even though I don’t have gorgeous blue or green peepers, I’m kind of partial to the boring brown eye color that I was given.

I recently decided to try Smartlash, a new eyelash enhancement which utilizes VisiLash Technology to create a gentle product that produces serious results. SmartLash is prescription-free formula that replaces harmful ingredients, such as Prostaglandin, with mild peptides to improve the look of lashes and brows without affecting the remaining eye area and skin. Although, what really sold me were the clinical results.

A 30-day independent clinical study yielded the following results:

  • 100% saw an increase in the appearance of eyelash length, fullness and thickness
  • Participants experienced up to a 68% increase in the appearance of lash length!
  • 100% said they feel like they need less mascara
  • 100% indicated superior performance compared to previously used eyelash enhancers

SmartLash is so incredibly easy to use. I just apply it to my lash line, as if I am applying eyeliner, twice a day and I’m done. I have only been using the product for about 4 days, so will check back in after a month and share my results!

10 Easy to Follow Weight Loss Tips for Every Day

Friday, September 10th, 2010

As much as I love summer- the vacations, the sun, sand, bike rides and ocean breezes, there are a few things that really start to take a toll on my body and waistline- namely the barbeques, burgers and booze that are synonymous with warmer months. I assumed that after Labor Day passed, I would be back to my healthy eating habits and kick the added calories. Although, I seemed to have forgotten that after summer comes my other favorite time of year- Football Season. (Go Canes!) Along with football season comes even more barbeques, burgers and booze. Sigh. Luckily, there are some easy ways to lose weight without giving up all the fun stuff. With just a couple tweaks to my diet and following these simple healthy eating tips throughout the day and week, I can still have my cake and eat it too…. or burger… or margarita.

  1. Cut your portions down. Portion control is such an easy thing to correct during the day. Instead of eating an entire bagel for breakfast, eat half.  Our portions are generally much larger than a recommended serving size.
  2. Go Green! And red. And Purple. And yellow. Eat as many colorful veggies and fruits as you possible can during the day. Not only are they a great low calorie snack but they provide tons of nutritional benefits!
  3. Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate. Often times people mistake dehydration for hunger pains. Before you sit down to feast, drink a glass of water or two and reevaluate just how hungry you truly are.
  4. Eat wholesome foods. If you cannot pronounce some the chemicals, additives and substitutes, don’t eat it.
  5. Take your vitamins. It is a simple way to get your daily nutritional needs and it aids in weight loss. It really doesn’t get any easier than that.
  6. Behave on school (work) nights. Try to limit alcohol, going out to dinner and generally unhealthy habits during the week. If you treat your body right throughout the week, not only will it be reflected in your energy level and your performance at school or work, but then you will deserve a nice meal or cocktail (or three) on the weekend.
  7. Drink coffee. Caffeine is a great appetite suppressant, just be sure to go light on the sugar and cream. Black coffee has close to zero calories but can quickly become unhealthy.
  8. Get moving. I know working out is harder for some people than others but add a little cardio to your weekly routine and you won’t be nearly as worried about the hot dog that you had on Sunday.
  9. Get your beauty sleep. Research shows that less than 8 hours of shut eye can decrease your metabolism and increase hunger.
  10. Educate yourself. Just being aware of nutritional facts will help you make healthier choices. Sign up for weight loss newsletters, emails and tweets. Eat This Not That is a great website that give nutritional info and guidance on everything from what fast food lunch is most nutritious to options at a BBQ.

You Are What You Eat

Thursday, August 26th, 2010

Flickr user .craig

Here is some food for thought: what you put into your body is just as important for your skin as what you put on it. The foods you eat directly affect your outward appearance, primarily on your skin. While the beauty industry is constantly evolving and progressing with scientific breakthroughs and discoveries, spending hundreds of dollars on the newest revolutionary product might not be the only solution.  Although proper cleansers and creams are vital, achieving gorgeous glowing skin can be as simple as assessing your diet and adding food for healthy skin. The next time you are tempted to hit the beauty aisle, perhaps you should consider the food section first because beauty really does come from within!

What to consume for healthy-looking skin:

  1. Whole grains- Not only do these healthy starches help whittle your waistline—they can also help prevent acne. Unhealthy carbs, such as potato chips and cookies, affect hormone levels and cause the body to produce excess oil, which clogs the pores. Next time you’re craving carbs, put down the Pringles and pick up some popcorn. The fiber will not only fill you up but regulate your insulin, which keeps your hormones and oil production in check.
  2. Water- There are countless benefits of drinking water. Water is crucial to proper skin hydration. Plus, it carries nutrients to cells, aids in flushing out toxins, and helps your body sweat more efficiently. It sounds gross, I know, but sweat is a natural cleansing mechanism that brightens the complexion and keeps skin looking fresh.

    Flickr user Pink Sherbet Photography

  3. Blueberries, Blackberries, Strawberries and Plums- These four super fruits contain some of the best antioxidants out there. The benefits of antioxidants are vast, and can play a role in everything from preventing heart disease to boosting the immune system. Lucky for us, these delicious fruits also play a major role in anti-aging. They protect the skin cells from free radical damage.
  4. Green Tea- Another reason to go green! Green tea benefits include antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties, packing a 1-2 punch for beautiful skin. Studies suggest that green tea, which protects the cell membrane, can reduce the risk of UV damage and thus minimize the risk of skin cancer. Also, the polyphenols found in green tea have anti-inflammatory properties, ideal for people trying to prevent and reduce acne.
  5. Turkey- Roasted or smoked turkey has a high concentration of zinc, which helps maintain the collagen and elastin fibers responsible for the skin’s elasticity and firmness. Zinc also helps regulate sebum production, putting a stop to shine and helping to prevent pimples. Other foods for healthy skin that contain zinc: chickpeas, pumpkin seeds, baked beans and beef.
  6. Salmon- Get soft, supple skin by adding salmon to your diet.  It’s rich in omega3 fatty acids, which are essential for healthy cell membranes—they hold in moisture and help keep skin plump and youthful. Omega3 fatty acids also have anti-inflammatory properties and can decrease clogged pores.

Blow Dryer Blues- Is the price tag always worth it?

Thursday, August 19th, 2010

flickr user rainpie

I have been without a blow dryer for over three months. This statement might shock you, as it did most of my co-workers, but it’s true. My last blow dryer (not the best hair dryer in the world but a trusty $29.99 drugstore brand) had a good run but ultimately went up in flames. Literally, flames…mid blow dry. I’m just not sure why I went all of three months without purchasing a new one. It could have been laziness, cheapness, or a subliminal nostalgia for my youth, when I was a competitive swimmer and had perpetually wet hair. Whatever the reason, I lived by way of air drying and declared a strike against purchasing a new blow dryer. I would even go as far as making a trip to the gym before a big meeting or event, specifically to use their hair dryers. Weird, I know.

Last weekend, I finally buckled. I had 45 minutes to shower and get ready for a wedding, which meant no time for a quick gym/borrowed blow dryer visit. Facing defeat, I made a visit to the beauty supply store by my house, where I stood in shock, taken aback by the overwhelming variety of blow dryers, features and technology. There were dozens of blow dryers, all boasting breakthrough science and revolutionary patents—and not one of them resembled my previous $29.99 model in any way, least of all in price. In a fit of pure frustration, I selected the cheapest (a mere $119!) blow dryer on display, paid, and left.

Grudgingly, I admit that my hair felt so much better after drying it with my new, expensive (relatively speaking) blow dryer. I began to wonder: is there some actual merit behind all the patenting and revolutionary technology?  Luckily, I have a wealth of knowledge at my fingertips, thanks to my extremely beauty-savvy coworkers (after all, our company is called Intelligent Beauty). For this particular question, I quizzed Jac, our non-official hair care expert.  She informed me that while it isn’t always the price tag that determines the best blow dryers, there are certainly key terms, technological aspects and features to look for when purchasing a blow dryer.

Here are some helpful tips:

  • Make sure your blow dryer is at least 1800 watts. This ensures adequate power to blow dry your hair. (Lower wattages = more time to dry, resulting in more heat damage to the hair.)
  • Ionic Technology is a fairly common phrase in the hair care world. It refers to a technology that generates negative ions that neutralize positive ions in the atmosphere. This process allows hair to dry faster, seals the cuticle, and reduces frizz, leaving hair smooth and shiny.
  • A ceramic hair dryer actually has a self-regulating system that senses if the dryer is getting too hot. The air flow is at the right temperature, and the coils are made out of ceramic as well.
  • Tourmaline blow dryers utilize a technology that speeds up the drying process by about 60%, which ultimately reduces damage caused by heat.
  • Another feature to look for in a good blow dryer: different temperature and speed settings, which allow you to adjust your preferences manually.

The moral of the story? There are several different options fitting for several different bank accounts.  The reigning king of the blow drying world is the T3 Featherweight Luxe, which actually nourishes the hair. For a more budget-friendly blow dryer, opt for something along the lines of the Conair Tourmaline Ceramic Ionic Styler. Just make sure your blow dryer has at least one of the features listed above. It all comes down to amount of time spent drying—less time, less heat, the better the blow dryer!

Lessons from Lesley. Lesson 2- Seven Easy Steps to Smoky, Sultry Eyes

Thursday, August 5th, 2010

Sultry, smoky, come-hither eyes is a look that has been in for decades and some of us (ok… probably just me) have been attempting to perfect it for almost as long. My first attempt at this dramatic eye makeup look resulted in a high school classmate inquiring as to whether I had a black eye. Never one to be easily deterred, I summoned some good old fashioned if-you-don’t-succeed-try-try-again attitude and attempted smoky eye makeup for the second time. This time, causing my younger sister to take me to the MAC makeup counter at the mall and receive a crash course in eye makeup application. My first piece

Smokey Eye Makeup Image by Flickr user dreamglow pumpkincat210

of advice from the makeup pro? Smoky eyes are never a good look for school, or just about any day time function for that matter! Point taken. Her other easy to follow eyeshadow techniques have served me well over the past ten years. However, since it has been a decade (depressing) I grudgingly admitted that it was time to add a few new tricks to my repertoire. Eagerly, Lesley, my outspoken and cosmetically inclined cubicle-mate, offered some Amy-proof eye makeup tips.

Eye shadow techniques for smoky eye makeup

  1. Prep your peepers. Apply a base or primer on the eyelids and brow bone, which will prevent the eye shadow from streaking. If you are in a bind and don’t have a primer, concealer will work too.
  2. Apply a base coat to your lid and brow bone using a light and shimmery color. The trick to creating the perfect smoky eye makeup is to use contrasting colors, so using a light base will help accentuate the darker shadows.
  3. Apply black, charcoal or brown eyeliner starting at the inner corner of your lash line and work outward. Don’t be afraid to go a little thicker on the eyeliner! Once you finish, smudge and blend the liner using a q-tip.
  4. Apply dark eyeshadow onto the lid by beginning at the lash line and extending into the crease of the eye.Remember, the darker the shadow, the greater the contrast and the more dramatic the look.
  5. Blend! The key to creating the perfect dramatic eye makeup effect is to seamlessly blend the colors together, using an allover eye shadow brush and blend upward and outward until there is no distinct line.
  6. The final touch for the perfect dramatic smoky-eye look is serious mascara. Swipe on several coats until your lashes are as long and lush as you like.
  7. Admire! You created gorgeous smoky eye makeup in less than 5 minutes!

Beach Waves- The Chic Summer Hairstyle for Year Round

Thursday, July 29th, 2010

Growing up on the beach in Florida, I spent my days racing back and forth from the sand and school (probably a little too much time in the sun and sand when I should have been in school, but that is neither here nor there).  Summer style was always in, bathing suit tops peeking out from under t-shirts, flip flops, board shorts and wet hair were all too common of a sight at my high school. Looking back at pictures, the au natural beach look was not so cute. However, luckily for the current students at my alma mater and fans of natural beauty everywhere, carefree wavy hair styles and tousled hair are in!

Blake's Perfect Beach Waves

Perfecting the California cool beach waves hair style is as easy as, well, a day at the beach! Trust me, if yours truly can pull this off, anyone can. If only I knew these quick hairstyle tips in high school…

The greatest part about this easy breezy summer hairstyle is that it can be achieved with either wet or dry hair! The most important ingredient is good hair texturizer that mimics the  look from the sun, sand and saltwater and spares your hair the damaging effects from the real thing. I recommend Krystal High Gloss Shine Spray by Kronos or Bumble and Bumble Surf Spray.

If you are starting with wet hair, work the product through the hair and either towel dry or blow-dry with a diffuser.  It is best to only partially dry the hair and remember to not run your fingers through it too much; this can cause frizz and accidently remove the hair texturizer. When starting with dry hair, the process is even easier! Just spray the product on the roots and lightly over the hair for added volume and body. If your hair gets oily easily, apply a little dry shampoo first.

Depending on your hair type and texture, a little spray and scrunch might be all you need. If your hair loses volume easily or needs a little extra vavava-voom, there is an optional step two. Use a curling iron, either large or small barreled, to add a few loose waves. Choose sections of hair in varying sizes and alternate the directions of the curls. Once you have finished curling, bend over and shake your head to ensure that your curls create a tousled hair look, not styled, and perform a quick final spray with either your texturizer or a high gloss shine.

The result? A perfectly chic and total easy summer hairstyle that works year round.