Tag Archives: Beauty

Makeup That Accentuates Your Eye Color

No matter what color your eyes may be, there’s probably a song about it. Crosby, Stills, and Nash harmonized about “Sweet Judy Blue Eyes” in the 70’s while the Axl Rose sang about “eyes of the bluest skies” in “Sweet Child O’ Mine” in the 90’s. Van Morrison paid his tribute to a “Brown Eyed Girl” in a song of the same name in the 1960’s and Crystal Gayle did double duty with her 70’s mega-hit “Don’t It Make My Brown Eyes Blue?” Sugarloaf gave us the funky “Green Eyed Lady” and Kelly Clarkson gave hazel eyes some love in “Behind Those Hazel Eyes.” If for every eye color there is a song, well there too is an ideal make up for every eye color. So green, blue, hazel, or other, these eye makeup tips have it covered.

Woman with green eyes
Green Eyes
If you are a green eyed lady, like Rhianna, violet and plum shades are your best bets. However, you have a wide range of other hues to choose from, including deeper purples, mauves, and greens for a fall or winter look, peach or apricot for a spring blush or gold, bronze and copper for a sun- kissed effect. Lilacs and medium pinks are also good for a more subdued look. When highlighting the brow bone, avoid white, which will do nothing for your peepers; instead try apricot, taupe, or peach.

Woman with brown eyes
Brown Eyes
If you’re a brown eyed girl, congratulations. Your eye color is the easiest to complement, so you can get away with colors that might look garish on other girls. Go for purple, pinks, and blues for some added brightness or more neutral grays and greens. Golds and browns are great earthy options for you. You can also pull off a bright blue, which may be challenging for those with lighter colored eyes, so take advantage. Cooler tones make brown eyes pop.

Woman with blue grey eyes
Blue or Gray
The blue or gray-eyed are best advised to use shades that are slightly darker in tone than your natural eye color. Try contrasting shades of brown rose and violet. Soft peaches, lavender, lilac and fuchsia are great standout options, while golds, warm taupes, and rich browns will work for a more understated effect.

Woman with hazel eyes
Hazel
Hazel- eyed girls have a range of fun options! You can go for lavenders, deep greens and shades with ochre undertones. Gold -based shadows will create a cat -eye effect by bringing out those golden flecks, and brighter green shades will bring out the intensity in the green flecks. Try experimenting with different color intensities or use a combination. For example, you can try three different shades of purple to bring out blue specks, or if you just want to play up the brown base, use shades of natural browns.

Flecks
If you have pool or flecks other than your dominant eye color, decide which color you are trying to emphasize. For example, if you have green eyes flecked with brown, you can choose colors which accentuate only free eyes or only brown. Avoid trying to bring out both colors, as this may have the effect of neutralizing both rather than accentuating either.

Brown, blue, hazel, and gray- it’s all about drawing attention! Bring out your best this season and keep batting those lashes. What’s your fave makeup combo for your eyes? Let us know!

Best Bets: Acrylic, Gel or Shellac

Woman applying nail polish

Gel, shellac or acrylic? In this day and age, with so many nail trends emerging, and updated technologies on nail care, that question may be becoming as commonplace as ‘paper or plastic?’ But the answer may not be so easy to come by. To find the nail option that’s right for you, it may be a good idea to explore our choices.

A gel manicure is a type of nail treatment where a nail technician uses a gel to bind synthetic fingernails to natural ones. The gel can also be applied over natural nails like regular polish. Though relatively new, this form of manicure is becoming more and more popular. It is seen as a cure for chipping nail polish with super shiny results that last 2-3 weeks and usually costs around $35. However, there are also downsides to the gel manicure.

Gels can be bad for nail health. Manicures in general can weaken your nails. “The manicure process itself can lead to dehydration and thinning of the nail,” says Dr. Chris Adigun, a Chapel Hill based dermatologist. This can be particularly detrimental in the gel manicure process where you won’t be able to see your nail beds for 2-3 weeks at a time, to properly assess nail health.

The removal process in gel manicures can also be dangerous not to mention time consuming, difficult and costly. If you opt to remove the gels at home, this must be done with a 100% acetone remover which can be harsh on nails. A less abrasive choice is a gel remover which tends to be more expensive. It is then necessary to affix a remover soaked cotton to nails with a foil wrap and then a hand towel. This process can take anywhere from 15 minutes to an hour. Wearers are also warned to not peel polish as this can take off layers of the nail and also cause water to seep in the nail, which can lead to an infection.

Acrylic nails, or artificial nails, are another choice. Donne Geer, co- founder of Hey Nice Nails explains, “Acrylics are applied using a liquid monomer and a powder polymer to create a hard protective layer over your natural nails. Acrylics only harden when exposed to air”. Polish is added later. Like gel polish, acrylics are also a long lasting option for fashion lovers. If done correctly, acrylics can last up to 4 weeks, outlasting a gel manicure. The cost can range from $35 to $50.

Like gel nail polish, the removal process is time consuming and can be damaging to nail health. You must use a similar process of soaking and wrapping your nails in an acetone remover which can also wear down your nail beds and leave them vulnerable to infection. Acrylic nails are also cited as being difficult to get used to and many say they look unnatural.

Shellac nail polish is a brand name for a new patent pending nail product created by CND. It is a hybrid meaning half nail polish, half gel. Shellac and gel are very similar but Lunchtime Beauty Q &A writer Christina Han sites some differences including the shellac polish being slightly less goopy than the gel. Also, CND sell their own acetone wraps which isolate the remover to the nail bed area saving your fingers slightly as acetone dries out nails and skin. Also, the removal is a quicker process but is only available at salons.

So which option will you choose? With so many different factors involved, the choice is not an easy one.   We can only hope that we made the decision making process just a bit easier.

Facial Sprays & Misting Water

Woman using a facial spray

Ok, so you’re at your favorite makeup store and you’re loading up the little basket you have just gotten from the door attendant who has a pierced lip, black hair and what looks like a pack of ammo around her waist, although, on closer inspection, it seems to be makeup tools.  After you are assured that no violence is about to erupt, you hit the aisles.  You load up your little basket with about $100 worth of merchandise, the whole of which takes up no more than a fraction of your purse.  Then, as you approach the counter, you see it: a bottle of facial spray. Sure, you think you don’t need a $20 bottle of water after you’ve blown your money on everything else.  But think again. With essential oils, herbal extracts and antioxidants, that little addition may be the most valuable thing in your basket.

“But what can this product do for me?” you ask.  Well, more than you might think. Facial sprays can be used in combination with your moisturizer to help lock in hydration and prevent evaporation.  Skin get dry on airplanes?  Just pack your misting spray in your carry on and rejuvenate!  However, if you are using the mists and sprays to retain moisture,  make sure to use a moisturizing face spray with botanical extracts, saccharides or hyaluronic acid, all of which aid in moisture retention. If you  chose to use one  without these ingredients, it may end up having the opposite effect. According to Amanda Matcham, Skin Therapist at the International Dermal Institute, “Don’t let it (facial product without above-mentioned ingredients) dry on your face.  As the water dries on the skin, it evaporates and draws some of the skin’s existing moisture out with it.”

And who among us hasn’t been here?  You  go to the restroom in the middle of your day only to find you have just attended a meeting with your boss or had  a hot date with lipstick on your teeth or mascara under your eyes.  Well, assuming that is not your desired effect, it  can be avoided with just a little spritz of facial spray.  It will help to set your makeup and make sure you look relaxed, fresh and confident. For this, a regular water spray is best, according to Eddie Malter, official L’Oreal Paris makeup artist. It will help to set your makeup and make sure you look relaxed, fresh and confident all day.

So, what else should you know about facial sprays? A thermal water spray, rich in calcium and antioxidants, is the best for anti-irritation and sensitive skin.  Distilled water is good for basic hydration,  but those that contain botanical extracts and essential oils like aloe and lavender will do a better job.  Hydrosal, a.k.a. herbal water, is best for softening skin and will make you smell yummy too!  For mature skin, fruit based mists are best.  Look for products infused with orange and apple slices.

So, the takeaway?  Next time you’re in your makeup store, splurge.  That little bottle may be the best investment you make. And maybe you should smile at the door attendant on the way out.

Protecting Your Lips

woman applying lip balm

When we think of health care and beauty, many of us overlook our lips. In fact, 70% of beach goers who slather on sunscreen products will overlook their lips. However, in a study conducted at the University Of Texas Medical Branch Department Of Dermatology, researchers evaluated the knowledge of ultraviolet light as a risk for lip cancer and found that many beach goers were unaware of these risks. Read on to find out what sun damage can do to your lips and how you can keep your lips moist and healthy.

When it comes to skin cancer, ultraviolet rays are the most pertinent risk factor. Because lips don’t have melanin, they are highly vulnerable to sun damage caused by exposure to UV. The Mayo Clinic warns that the sun’s UV rays can affect the production of collagen on your lips leading to the formation of wrinkles on or around the mouth as an early aging sign.

The American Academy of Dermatology recommends applying an SPF lip balm every day, even on cloudy days, and reapply every two hours. Drinking water often will also help in protecting lips from sun damage as well as keeping them soft, smooth and hydrated. Here are some other tips for you in finding a lip balm product that will protect your lips:

  • Stay away from shiny lipsticks that have high gloss with little or no color as they will attract UV rays. You’re better off with a matte product.
  • Buy lip products that have a base of paraffin, petroleum jelly or beeswax. Beeswax. These will stay on your lips longer and seal moisture longer than thinner glosses and balms.
  • If your lips become dry and start to peel, use sugar and olive oil to exfoliate lips and remove accumulated dead skin cells.

Here are some other tips on how to keep lips looking healthy:

  • Stop Licking Your Lips: Robert Brodell, M.D., a dermatologist from Warren, OH, warns that licking your lips can damage the protective barrier and dry out the lips. The saliva’s digestive enzymes break down this barrier. Opt for a lip balm instead.
  • Use A Humidifier: It can replace moisture in dry indoor air and keep lips and skin hydrated.
  • Limit Your Use of Matte Lipsticks: They can dry your lips extremely, which is why they should be used sparingly when lips are chapped. Try alternating them with hydrating lipsticks or add a moisturizing lip balm layer underneath.

Here is a guide to treating common problems associated with your lips:

  • Cut in the Corner of the Mouth: Keep lips hydrated and apply hydrocortisone cream to affected area.
  • Wrinkles Around Lips: Apply creams with anti-aging ingredients like retinol. Chemical peels can be helpful as well.
  • Thin lips: The best option for thin lips is a collagen injection, which costs about $300 and can last up to six months. Consumers should be aware of possible side effects including excessive swelling and temporary redness of the lips.

What do you do to keep your lips looking luscious? Let us know in the comments section below.

Quick Fixes to Keep on Hand

Woman looking in the mirror

Your life is hectic enough. Finding yourself in a beauty dilemma at the last second is not a fun experience. Luckily, we’ve rounded up some quick-fix beauty products to keep on hand in case of a beauty emergency. The best part of this list is that it’s likely that you already own these products, you just may not know their awesome secret uses.

Clear Nail Polish
It’s unlikely that you will need to paint a quick, glossy coat over your mani while you’re out and about, but it can happen. That isn’t why we suggest keeping clear nail polish on hand, though. Clear nail polish can patch up a run in pantyhose or nylons, and help keep the run from getting worse. You can also use this as a type of liquid band-aid if you’re caught without a traditional one.

Deodorant
There’s a good chance that your beauty cabinet is never without a deodorant and while you probably don’t think of deodorant and your face together, in an emergency situation you might want to. Famed makeup artist (credits include celebrities, high fashion shoots and Revlon), Gucci Westman, says that in a pinch, deodorant makes a great instant mattifier. You can also use deodorant on your thighs and bikini line to help prevent ingrown hairs and razor bumps after you shave. If you’re breaking in new shoes, you can swipe some deodorant on your heels before you put your shoes on to help prevent blisters from forming. A clear gel formula is probably the best formula for this trick.

Hair Conditioner
If you have ever grabbed your razor then reached for shave gel only to find you’re out, you will definitely appreciate this tip. Slather some hair conditioner on your legs and use that as a substitute for shaving gel.

Toothbrush
What can’t a toothbrush do? Seriously, there are so many great uses for your toothbrush beyond keeping your teeth clean and healthy. Instead of shelling out money for an expensive lip exfoliating contraption, use (gently) your toothbrush to remove dry, dead skin from your lips. You can also use a toothbrush to evenly distribute dye to the root of your hair. As if these two reasons weren’t enough for you to fall in love with your toothbrush all over again, if you find you’ve got some suddenly dirty jewelry, bust out a toothbrush (not one you plan on using in your mouth again) and give your jewelry a good deep clean.

Lip Balm
Keeping lip balm on hand is a great idea because dry, chapped lips are uncomfortable. Your lip balm not only soothes your lips, it can also be used on any small scratches, nicks or cuts. Lip balm is also useful as a cuticle treatment. A cult favorite lip balm/major multi-tasker is Smith’s Rosebud Lip Salve. You can even use a small amount to tame split ends when needed.

Multi-tasking beauty products, like a cream blush for cheeks and lips, are definitely helpful to have on hand in the event of a disaster. You probably already own most of, if not all of, these products and if you don’t, you should. One of the greatest things about this list is that all of these quick-fix beauty solutions are super easy to locate and don’t require a significant monetary investment. Bonus points if you keep some of these items in your purse so you really are always prepared for a beauty emergency.

Antioxidants to Boost Immunity – Vine Vera Reviews

Antioxidants are a highly popular topic when it comes to health and beauty and with good reason. These food and skin care ingredients really do help in a large variety of ways from protecting your immune health to helping you look younger. There are several ways to use antioxidants in order to boost your immunity. The most common way for people to get antioxidants to improve immune functioning is through their diet. A healthy, well-balanced diet often provides all the antioxidants you need for proper immune functioning. However, there are supplements designed to pack an extra punch with antioxidants. Following, we’ve compiled a brief list of the most recognized antioxidants to look for when it comes to boosting your immunity.

Broccoli on a wooden board.

Vitamin C
Vitamin C as an antioxidant fights free radicals that attack your body daily. According to a paper published on the National Center for Biotechnology Information, vitamin C deficiencies lead to reduced resistance against pathogens, while an increase in supply can enhance certain immune system parameters. The paper further states “With regard to the common cold different studies including meta-analyses underline that the prophylactic intake of vitamin C may slightly reduce the duration of the illness in healthy persons…”

Foods that are high in vitamin C include many citrus fruits such as grapefruits, oranges and kiwis. Other foods rich in the antioxidant vitamin C include:

  • Kale
  • Broccoli
  • Cauliflower
  • Sweet Potatoes
  • Tomatoes
  • Red, yellow or green peppers

Sliced papaya on a plate.

Vitamin E
Another important antioxidant to help boost your immune system is vitamin E. Vitamin E is essential to immune functioning because it signals the germ/bacteria/virus killer cells to target foreign or harmful substances and destroy these cells. Additionally, vitamin E stimulates the production of B cells which create antibodies to fight diseases. Foods that are high in vitamin E include:

  • Broccoli
  • Leafy greens such as chard and spinach
  • Nuts
  • Red peppers
  • Sunflower seeds
  • Papaya

Lobster dish with seafood dressings.

Selenium
Selenium is an important antioxidant that increases natural killer cells and that enhances the results of vitamin E in the body. In addition, selenium is a powerful antioxidant in the fight against cancer because it mobilizes cancer-fighting cells and reduces damage due to chemical carcinogens and radiation. Selenium also boosts your immune response to infections and helps your body form blood clots. To get more selenium in your diet consider these foods:

  • Eggs
  • Tuna
  • Lobster
  • Shrimp
  • Nuts
  • Chicken
  • Cheese
  • Whole grains

Closeup of a ripe peach.

Vitamin A
Carotenoids are also an important immune-boosting antioxidant. When your body requires vitamin A it converts beta-carotene into vitamin A, but otherwise allows carotenoids to be free to fight free radicals. Beta-carotene is  important to your immune system because it interferes with the oxidation of fat and cholesterol in your blood stream. When you want to increase your intake of beta-carotene, look for brightly colored foods such as:

  • Carrots
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Pumpkin
  • Squash
  • Peaches
  • Apricots
  • Cantaloupe

Varying your diet helps provide your body with the nutrients it needs and including antioxidants helps to boost your immune system. Before beginning any new diet or taking supplements, it is always a good idea to consult with your doctor first.

Ingredients That Help Minimize the Appearance of Pores – Vine Vera Reviews

Woman highlighting her common skin issues such as enlarged pores.

You are diligent about your skin care routine. You cleanse, hydrate and exfoliate routinely and you never sleep with makeup on. You eat a well-balanced diet with nutrients and vitamins meant to make your skin look its best. And yet you struggle with the appearance of enlarged pores. The battle seems to be never-ending. First of all, know that you are not alone in this struggle. Enlarged pores are one of the most common complaints made to dermatologists. While you can’t wave a magic wand and get rid of your pores, Vine Vera introduces you to some ingredients that, when used regularly, help to minimize the appearance of your pores.

What causes enlarged pores?
Your hormones are responsible for the regulation of glands that produce oil, also known as sebum. This sebum moves through the lining of each pore and rests on your face. With normal oil production, the movement of sebum from pore to face is seamless and imperceptible. The problem arises when your glands produce excess oil. The oil itself is not responsible for enlarged pores, it is the complications that occur with too much oil. The sebum mixes with other substances, like dead skin cells, and forms a clog in the pore. This clog is what forces the pore to become larger.

What skin care ingredients help minimize the appearance of enlarged pores?

Beta Hydroxy Acid
Salicylic acid, a BHA  that is often found in anti-acne products, in a gel or liquid form is one of the first ingredients you should look for. Products with BHA not only remove dead skin cells from the surface of your face, they also get into the pore and cleanse it. When used in a gel or liquid form, BHAs are not irritating to skin. Because BHAs exfoliate the inside of your pores, the shape of the pore is improved and oil flows much more easily.

Alpha Hydroxy Acid
Alpha hydroxy acids, like glycolic and lactic acid, work in much same way that BHAs work. They also exfoliate and remove dead skin cells and help clear pores, but they also help supply a bit of moisture. For this reason, AHAs are most beneficial to individuals with dry, sensitive skin or those who suffer from sun damage.

Retinoids
Prescription retinoids have been proven to have a positive effect on pore functioning. You may want to consider a trip to your doctor or dermatologist to talk about prescription retinol gels and creams if you have extremely stubborn skin or blackheads that are accompanied by other breakouts. Though these can be initially harsh on your skin, with regular use you will find your skin adapts. You can continue to use BHAs with retinoids if you want some extra help with your pores.

In addition to using these skin care ingredients, also be sure to check your products for items that may clog pores. Purchase items labeled as non-comedogenic as these formulations are far less likely to clog your pores. Additionally, clay masks can be a great help with minimizing the appearance of the pores if used regularly. Clay soaks up extra oil and helps to clean out your pores. Remember that good skin care does show results, it just may take some time to figure out what ingredients work best for your face.

Skin Beautification Drink?

can you drink your way to increased collagen production?

Collagen is found in many places, ranging from an injectable plumper for the lips to different foods we consume, ranging from meat to different kinds of vegetables. It is the natural protein component of younger-looking skin that leaves it youthful-looking. However, it is also something we lose as we age and our skin loses elasticity as a result. But should you be drinking it to keep you looking younger?

UK star Millie Mackintosh, among other celebrities, have been swearing by these drinks to maintain their skin’s youthful glow in just under 35 calories. Since their increase in popularity in Asia, these drinks have now made their way into North American and European markets, with the claim to replenish the lost collagen in skin and give you that same youthful appearance. However, are their anti-aging claims the real deal or is it a bunch of hogwash?

As they are so new to the American market, there is very little research on collagen drinks and their impact on overall skin health. Many collagen drinkers say that they notice a difference in their skin’s condition, but these drinkers may also opt for things that will make their skin healthier naturally, ranging from drinking more water to a healthy diet and exercise. Therefore it’s hard to judge how much of the improvement is from these collagen drinks versus natural methods that will make your body and, in turn, your skin healthier.

Most dermatologists disagree with the claims that liquid collagen will bring more collagen to your skin, mainly due to the science behind oral consumption into the stomach. Since collagen is a protein, your digestive system will only recognize that it is a sequence of amino acids, not specifically the collagen intended for your skin. As a result, the collagen that is supposed to be going to help replenish and rejuvenate your skin’s tone and elasticity will be broken down by stomach acid and then go to wherever your body needs it to go in order to increase its energy.

Instead of drinking up your collagen, these dermatologists will often suggest that in order to increase your body’s natural collagen production in the skin through diet, the best bet is to consume more Vitamin C. This vitamin, found in citrus fruits and berries and mainly known for its immune-boosting ability, is also known as ascorbic acid and is a key component in producing collagen. This, in turn, helps make skin look younger and reduce the signs of aging. And it’s much cheaper to add into your diet too: Vitamin C supplements are around $7 for about 50 pills, and plenty of foods that you eat, from fruits to vegetables, contain this vital ingredient. Meanwhile, liquid collagen can put you back up to $40 for a 30-day supply.

Vitamin C is not only important in supplement form, but also in your skincare routine. In addition to its important part in producing collagen, it can help minimize the appearance of age spots and wrinkles and brighten your skin’s tone. Look for skin care products with Ascorbic Acid listed as one of the ingredients.

What do you think about this new collagen drink, would you try it?