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Archive for August, 2018|Monthly archive page

These Peels, Scrubs, And Exfoliators Will Keep Your Skin Glowing All Year Long.

In skincare on August 15, 2018 at 12:00 pm

Caution:  Increased use will make your skincare absorb better into your skin, making you even more amazing….

We are constantly bombarded with images of our favorite celebrities and their beautiful, glowing skin.  Sure, this look is achieved with the help of their go-to makeup artist and their arsenal of glow inducing products.  But before the makeup is applied, much attention is given to a celebrity’s skincare routine, whether it is in the form of trips to their favorite skincare professional with state of the art tools or the use of at home treatments.

Then there is you.  Wondering if your skin can be that amazing- especially if you have some skin care concerns.  The truth is yes your skin can be that amazing and there is easy access to great products.  When you feel like your skin needs a daily glow, the enviable radiance before a big event, or you just need to banish uneven texture, dark marks, red spots and hormonal breakouts, you can still head over to your dermatologist’s office for treatments which may include post procedure down time. The other option is reaching for at home solutions in the form of peels, scrubs, and exfoliators  to deliver amazing results.  Whatever you choose, be sure to be consistent, follow the directions and use your sunscreen.

Cane & Austin 30% Miracle Pads $88.  These peel pads are ideal for turning up the cell renewal process.  Key ingredients include glycolic acid (resurfacing), vitamins A, C, E, (lighten, brighten, tightening) and salicylic acid (clears pores) which work together to banish breakouts, reduce the appearance of age spots and hyperpigmentation and refine the look of pores.  COQ10 provides powerful anti aging protection.

Algenist Multi-Perfecting Detoxifying Exfoliator $38.  This oil free, clay based exfoliator will help improve texture, tone and clarity, making your skin soft and luminous with salicylic acid and oligosaccharides (moisturize, resurface).

Philosophy The Microdelivery Exfoliating Facial Wash $8-$60. More like a mini peel, this facial wash is perfect if you want to cleanse and treat in one step.  Gentle enough for daily use.

Juice Beauty Green Apple Peel Sensitive Exfoliating Mask $42. Great for all skin types except sensitive, the organic fruit hydroxy acids and raw cane sugar will help to get rid of discoloration and makes the skin smoother and brighter.

Mario Badescu Almond And Honey Non Abrasive Face Scrub $15.  This super gentle facial scrub contains finely ground almonds and honey and sweet almond oil to gently buff away dead skin cells and nourish and hydrate your skin.

Tatcha Polished Gentle Rice Enzyme Powder $65.  This water activated enzyme powder turns into a creamy foam, gently buffing away dull, pore clogging dirt to reveal smooth glowing skin.  Key ingredients include Tatcha’s proprietary Hadesi 3 complex of antioxidant green tea which aids in skin detox, red algae which plumps and moisturizes and rice which exfoliates.

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Don’t Forget These 5 Places When Applying Your Sunscreen

In beauty, lifestyle, skincare on August 13, 2018 at 12:00 pm

Remember back in the day when wearing sunscreen on a regular basis wasn’t really part of your skin care routine?  No one concerned themselves with the dangers of bathing in the sun for hours, and slathered in baby oil at that.  And if you had a deeper complexion, you thought you were immune to the effects of sun damage because of the depth of your built in melanin.

Fast forward to today where people are more educated about the dangers of UVA and UVB rays.  There is now a lot more information available about the various forms of skin cancer, how they develop, as well as the steps you can take to protect you and your loved ones.  Startling statistics show that skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in the United States (1).  In addition, skin cancer in people of color is usually detected in later stages when it is more difficult to treat (2).  The key is understanding that absolutely no one is immune to this disease, which, in most cases, if detected early can be cured.

Now you may be thinking to yourself that because your makeup has SPF or because you don’t spend your days outside in the sun, that all is well.  Not so fast.  SPF in makeup is insufficient because it (SPF) should be reapplied every 2 hours and most people don’t even apply enough of said makeup to get enough protection in the first place. Furthermore, ultraviolet light penetrates windows and clothes so you still need a sunscreen.

With that said, although people are actually taking the time to apply sunscreen before leaving home, there are still sensitive areas of the body that are often overlooked and are some of the places people wouldn’t necessarily consider developing skin cancer:

Lips. Fresh Sugar Sport Treatment Sunscreen SPF 30.  This targeted, nourishing formula is water resistant and perfect for the lip, eye and face area.

Ears/NoseAlgenist Sublime Defense Ultra Lightweight UV Defense Fluid SPF 50.  This lightweight, oil free sunscreen is fast absorbing and contains anti-oxidants that help delay the aging process.  Sublime Defense does not leave a gray cast on deep skin tones.

Eyelids.  Shiseido Sun Protection Eye Cream Broad Spectrum SPF 34.  Gentle and non-irritating is the way to go when it comes to applying anything to the eye area.  Anything you apply in that area should also treat.  This sunscreen eye cream is fast absorbing, lightweight, hydrating and makes the eye area appear brighter.

Scalp.  Coola Organic Scalp & Hair Mist SPF 30.  Even though your hair may be covering your scalp, both are at risk for sun damage.  Good for all hair types including tightly coiled, Coola Organic Scalp & Hair Mist keeps hair moisturized, manageable, protects color.  Contains monoi oil and panthenol and is vegan, cruelty free, and non-gmo.

Feet/HandsMD Solar Sciences 40 SPF Quick Dry Body Spray.  Oil free and water resistant, this sunscreen is great for those who live an active lifestyle and is safe enough to use on children 6 months and older.

The great thing about these sunscreens and many others is that they come in various forms like finishing sprays, primers and balms, making it easier to choose a formulation that fits your preference and lifestyle.  And remember, sunscreen (between 30 and 50 SPF) isn’t just for the bright sunny days of summer.  It is to be used every day of the year.

(1) https://www.cdc.gov/cancer/skin/statistics/index.htm

(2) https://www.aad.org/media/stats/conditions/skin-cancer

UVA rays are associated with aging the skin.

UVB rays are responsible for burning the skin which can lead to cancer.

Find out more about blue light skin aging (HEV) here.

On My Radar: Weekly Beauty, Fashion and Lifestyle Roundup

In beauty, fashion, lifestyle on August 10, 2018 at 12:00 pm

On My Radar is a roundup of all the things I love, discovered, and that have piqued my interest this week that you should know about.

Bite Beauty French Press Lip Gloss.  Rich, creamy and smooth, these coffee inspired lip glosses describe the perfect cup of coffee and are the perfect addition to your lip gloss collection.  Available in 6 sumptuous shades, French Press Lip Gloss is made with coffee butter and arabica cold press coffee oil which keep your lips smooth and conditioned.  These won’t be around long so hurry up and choose from these limited edition colors which describe the perfect flavor of coffee such as Flat White and Salted Caramel (a personal favorite).

Tom Ford Ombre Leather.  Experience how sultry leather notes in a fragrance can be with Tom Ford Ombre Leather.  A “textural scent” with notes of jasmine sambac, black leather, and white moss, this fragrance which comes in a minimalist matte black bottle is bold yet gentle, adventurous and sensual.

Laura Mercier Flawless Fusion Ultra Longwear Concealer.  This lightweight, medium to full coverage concealer hydrates and blurs and it’s fluidity makes application and blending a breeze.  Flawless Fusion doesn’t crease or fade and holds up against 12+ hour days.

Drunk Elephant C Tango Multivitamin Eye Cream.  C Tango eye cream is rich and creamy without being heavy and suffocating, leaving the under eye area smooth, bright and hydrated.  Formulated with five forms of vitamin C and eight peptides, C Tango is great for all skin types and can be used am and pm.

Zara Floral Jacquard Pants and Blazer.  These are the perfect two pieces that look great together or worn separately.  The rich texture and color of the fabric are perfect for the upcoming fall/winter season and can be dressed up or down.  Pair with a loafer or sneaker for a paired down look or with a heel to dress these pieces up.

Alexis Bittar Folded Knot Ring.  NEVER shy away from a beautiful piece of jewelry.  This brushed gold tone ring is bold without being over the top and is the perfect addition to your ring collection.

H&M Wool-Blend Coat.  Although it’s still warm outside, now is a good time to consider what cold weather outerwear pieces you need to add to your wardrobe.  This soft wool belted coat can be one of those pieces that can take you from late fall to early winter.

Modern Alchemy Hyacinth & Bergamot Candle. This beautiful blue marble candle is the perfect pop of color for any room.  In addition to the beauty of the candle, The lingering scent is like that of a cool, gentle ocean breeze that lasts long after the candle stops burning.

World Market Oval Gray Faux Shagreen Katy Desk.  This glamorous desk is the perfect accent to any room in your apartment/home.  With a soft grainy textural finish, deep drawer and gold steel legs, you can use this as a vanity entryway table, as a desk in your home office.

10 Universally Flattering Styles That Work On All Women

In fashion, how to, style on August 9, 2018 at 2:00 pm

Depending on how you look at it, shopping for clothes can sometimes be quite a process.  And, if you are left to your own devices to shop yourself as many are, trying to decide what style of clothing works on your body type can sometimes leave you annoyed, confused, discouraged or all 3.  There are a lot of clothing styles and different body types out there so it’s only natural to sometimes wonder what works for you.

Believe it or not, there is a such thing as clothing styles that are universally flattering for all body types.  Yes it is important to know what works specifically for you but you can also take the guess work out of building your wardrobe with the following styles, regardless of your size, body type, or height:

Wrap Dress.  The wrap dress works on every shape and size.  What’s great about this type of dress is that it highlights the smallest part of your waist (or helps to create one) and can give the illusion of curves and can complement a larger posterior.  Wrap dresses also have surplice (define) v neckline and the skirt portion which will either be an A-line (flare) or pencil cut, both of which complement most body types in and of themselves.  Depending on the material and the depth of the neckline, wrap dresses can be dressed up or down, worn to the office or for a special occasion.

A-Line Skirt.  Most a line skirts have a higher waist that helps to pull in and define the waist and graduates into a full skirt to hide thighs and posterior – great for those who choose to dress strategically to conceal these areas.

Pencil Skirt.  Pencil skirts look great on a multitude of figures because they create a great silhouette by conforming to the hips and skimming the legs.  The key is finding a skirt with details that will flatter your body type and either highlight or conceal certain aspects of your frame.  This can mean choosing a pencil skirt with varying features such as rouching, peplums and varying fabrics to create the best look.

Drop Crotch/Herem Pants.  This fun staple is a relaxed look that isn’t too tight.  It skims the body and tapers at the ankle.  Create balance with a loose fitting top.  If you want to add a bit of contrast, pair with a top that is a bit more form fitting.  Depending on how the high the waist of the harem pants are, you can even pair a crop top with them.  Concerned that a crop top is not for you because you don’t have six-pack abs?  No worries – a crop top can highlight the smallest part of the waist without showing skin.

Shirt Dress.  Shirt dresses are great because they allow you to create what isn’t there.  You can cut the belt loops that come on the dress and tie that sash where your waist is naturally.  You can even pair an entirely different belt with your shirt dress to create/cinch the waist.  Use this same same concept for a trench coat.

Collarless Blazer.  These types of blazers are universally flattering because they drape over the bust without the bulkiness.  This allows you to wear tops that aren’t as thin underneath your blazer.  This concept is especially great for those who may have a larger bust line where some collars may drape over that particular area in an unflattering way.

Paneled Dresses.  Paneled dresses create illusion wherever you want it because of the panels (color clocking).  Need to hide a tummy, choose a darker color or a pattern in the front to create the illusion of a smaller waistline.  Want a nip at the side/hip area, choose a paneled dress with the darker color or with surplice lines on the side.

Jumpsuits.  Jumpsuits are great because for one thing, you don’t have to do much coordinating.  Jumpsuits create many options for varying body types because you can choose a style that drapes, skims, or hugs the body in varying fabrics and silhouettes.  Bodysuits/Leotards have a similar concept and end unnecessary bunching around the waist.

Bodycon Dresses.  Every bodycon dress is not super skin tight or super short for that matter.  Like many of the aforementioned articles of clothing, the power is in the fabric, cut and silhouette of the dress.  With that said, you might choose a dress that has side panels, rouching or even a thicker, stretchy material – whatever it takes to match your comfort level.

Boot Cut Jeans.  Boot cut jeans have a more relaxed fit so they aren’t super tight like a skinny jean.  Similar to an A-line skirt, boot cut jean skim the hips and thighs so you don’t have to show off all of your parts to the world if you don’t want to.  And of course, as with jeans in general, you can dress up or down your look and wear varying types of shoes.

Please keep in mind that even within these examples, you still have to find the correct size, proportion, and preference for your particular body type and it’s nuances/uniqueness, as well as what you want to highlight or conceal.

What are your favorite universally flattering styles?  Are there any styles not list or do the aforementioned styles not work for you?  Leave your comments below.

Office Snacking Etiquette

In etiquette, how to on August 7, 2018 at 12:00 pm

Follow these tips to ensure that your office snacking is a civilized, fun filled experience.

Spending time with others to share a meal (or even snacks) in a communal setting is a wonderful pastime that many enjoy.  Whether it is around the family table, at a favorite restaurant or even a party, communal eating is a great way to catch up, strengthen bonds and connect with those around us.

This is especially true in the workplace.  Taking time out for communal eating/snacking in the workplace can encourage team building, idea creation, engagement, raise energy levels and of course banish post lunch hunger pangs.  Lets face it, even the most awesome work environments can use the provision of delicious, fun treats to add excitement to a typical workday.

Having said that, when it comes to office snacking, behaviors can occasionally get out of control.  You are probably familiar with the scenario:  you’re at work (or some other type of gathering) where there is plenty of food to enjoy and that one random person joins the group and without discretion, literally grabs food with their bare hands.  Hold Up!  Where did you just come from?  Have you washed your hands or at least used some hand sanitizer?  How does anyone know that you didn’t just use the restroom or public transportation?  Or that you didn’t just wipe your nose or come from the office handling tons of paperwork?

As with dining etiquette that suggests chewing with your mouth closed and keeping your elbows off the table, there is etiquette for less formal dining situations that suggests how one should conduct themselves – even around office chips and dip.

The following basic rules can apply anywhere…

  • Wash your hands before approaching food and drink.  No one knows where you and your hands have been.  If there is a sink nearby, do a courtesy hand wash or use hand sanitizer before touching any food (or plates/utensils) to lessen the concern of those around you.
  • Refrain from touching your hair, face and especially your nose while around communal food for obvious reasons.
  • Use utensils whenever possible – at least when it comes to serving yourself.  Many times communal office snacks are finger foods (cheese, crackers, other forms of crudite, dips and sauces) and there is always an inclination to grab a portion with bare hands.  Please don’t.  And please, as a courtesy, don’t use your chip or carrot as a utensil unless its your personal portion.
  • No Double Dipping.  Please don’t dip your chip (or other dip-able food), bite off a portion then put the remaining chip back in the community dip/sauce.  You may not have health issues but those around you may not know that.  Leaving traces of your saliva in and around the food is never cool.  And while we are on the topic of chips and dip, if your chip breaks off in the dip, please use a spoon to get said chip out.
  • Keep Your Hands Out Of The Bag. Whether you have washed your hands or not, as a courtesy, refrain from putting your hands in bags of chips, veggies, or whatever food comes in a bag.  Just pour a portion onto a napkin or plate to enjoy.  The same concept goes for breath mints, gum, candy and any other food that is not individually wrapped.
  • Clean Up After Yourself.  Enjoying communal food and drink might be confined to a common area such as a kitchen or empty room, cubicle or office.  You might even grab and go back to your desk to snack and work in private.  Whatever the case, clean up after yourself.  Use the trashcan and wipe up spills.  Put items away in the cabinet or fridge.  Don’t create the need for an exterminator to get rid of critters when all you have to do is clean up after yourself.
  • Don’t be a snack thief.  You know that person:  they grab 5 sandwiches, 5 bags of chips (to go with their sandwiches) 3 sodas and 10 cookies and stash all of it for later.  Then they go back for the portion they are going to in the moment, meanwhile no one else has had a chance to get anything to eat.  But that isn’t you.  It’s your colleague.  Anyway, be courteous and save some food for someone else.  Or at least wait until everyone has gotten their portion to go back for more.  And again, please don’t hoard, especially if you did not contribute by giving money or bringing any of the treats.

This non-exhaustive list isn’t necessarily about being a germaphobe but can fall in line with common courtesy and providing a safer, cleaner environment in which one can enjoy food and community.  When all else fails, if you are unsure of how food has been handled, just steer clear.  If you are around during the initial set up, you are safe to grab your portion before everyone else gets to it.

What has been your experience when eating in a communal office setting?  Share your tips on how you keep office snacking fun and safe.