Posts tagged ‘beauty’
Summer Beauty: The Hair Edition
There are a few things that come to mind when I think about summer hair. Frizz, volume, waves, beach, envy. But there are certain products out there that can tackle all of the aforementioned issues except for envy, because most of us will just never have Gisele Bündchen’s naturally beachy hair. Accept and move forward.
Begininning with beach and waves, I present you with Bumble and bumble’s new Surf Shampoo and Conditioner. Though the idea of attaining dirty salt water hair with a shampoo and conditioner seems counterintuitive, I was pleasantly surprised with the duos result on my moppy locks. After one use I noticed a new buoyant and edgy texture in my hair that was certainly comparable to post salt-water tendrils. Unlike most shampoos and conditioners whose effect dies down by the end of the day, the oceany texture stayed with me until my head hit the pillow.
Now let’s address volume. Most volume is achieved with hairspray and mousse, both of which I am pro. But come summertime I want the volume to be as similar to Gisele’s voluminous locks as possible. I have been a long time fan of Bumble and bumble’s Surf Spray, which has been around for much longer than the aforementioned shampoo and conditioner. A couple of spritzes on both sides of my head, some scrunching, and if you’re feeling bold, a quick run through with a curling iron and boom bam! your hair is a full inch or two fuller and also has a beachy texture.
Lastly, let’s discuss le frizz. Le evil frizz. I don’t know about you guys, but one percent of humidity and my hair is poof city. I may as well have stuck my hair in an electrical socket, which does tackle my desire for volume, but there is a big difference between volume and frizz. One is voluptuous, the other is like you’re taking hair cues from Bob Ross. After a few years of playing around with different de-frizz serums, most of which just made my hair look like the grease left on the wrapper of a McDonald’s Big Mac, I’ve happily settled on Bumble and bumble’s Brilliantine. A teeny tiny dollop (smaller than a penny), rubbed together in my palms and then smoothed over my hair (avoiding the roots!) and those frizzy fly aways are goners.
Before I leave you, let me touch on the fact that all of these products are by Bumble and bumble. This is by no means a sponsored post where you question my credibility. I just happen to think that when it comes to summer hair, Bumble and bumble knows best (they even have a surf kit!). Now go forth and channel Gisele.
The Crayon Kiss
Lipstick is hands down one of the greatest accessories. I know it’s a beauty product, but for something that adds such pow! to a look like a bold shade of red, it deserves to be placed in the accessory bin. However, prominent lip shades like fuchsia or orange aren’t necessarily for everyday wear — kind of like 6-inch stilettos — so finding a color that’s more subtle is as crucial to your beauty/accessory routine as face lotion.
When I was younger I had the brightest red lips on the playground. Kids used to make fun of me by telling me I wore my mom’s lipstick, and while that might have been the case behind closed doors at home, I spent most of my childhood telling the obnoxious kids hoarding the swingsets that my lips were naturally that red. But alas, as I’ve gotten older my lip color has faded and now I just miss the days when I looked like I had an addiction to eating cherry pops. While licking my lips can sometimes replicate this “natural red”, it usually just results in me looking like I have chapped lips. And as much as I love a bright lipstick, those too end up drying out my lips, and then I find myself licking them because they are chapped. It’s a vicious cycle if you didn’t pick that up already.
However, after spending a solid hour in Sephora last week, I think I have finally found the perfect everyday lip color. Clinique’s Chubby Stick comes in a multitude of shades in the form of a thick crayon. With a quick swipe it not only adds a subtle color (my personal favorite is the ‘Two Ton Tomato’ — whoever thought up that name clearly loves Heirloom season), but also gives my smackers as much moisture as Chapstick. I know I sound like a CoverGirl commercial right now, but I’m ok with that. When I find a product I love I want to share it. I want to praise it. I want to buy it in bulk so that I’m never without it. But since Clinique can sometimes be a bit on the pricier side, I’ve also found Revlon’s Just Bitten Kissable to be an affordable and comparable alternative. Now let’s makeout.
DIY: Big Tub of Balm to Small Tub of Balm
I have an affinity for large tubs of things. I love tubs of champagne. Tubs of ice cream. Tubs full of puppies. And tubs of lip balm. However, after carrying around a giant tub of Josie Maran’s Argan Balm for weeks and then trying to stuff it into a small clutch bag with no success, I realized maybe I should think about downsizing. Unfortunately, Lady Maran’s (sorry, I’ve been watching a lot of Game of Thrones) nourishing all-purpose balm doesn’t come in mini size and I was forced to take matters into my own DIY hands.
So, in what is perhaps one of the most simple DIYs — except for maybe this one — I will now show you how to take your giant tub of awesome goop and turn it into a clutch-friendly travel pal!
You will need: an small, empty container (I found mine at the local drug store). A giant container full of your favorite balmy goodness (as you can tell, my favorite is Josie Maran’s Argan Balm. And a spoon, which you hopefully already have in your kitchen.
Take your spoon and carve out some balm from the big container. Make sure you start small so that you don’t overflow your small container and end up with a greasy mess.
Using the back of the spoon, smoosh down the balm into the smaller container. Once you have enough in there, use your finger to smooth out the top.
Now take your new itsy bitsy container of balm and put it into the smallest bag you own! TA DA!
Do You Like My Buns?
Back when I had long hair I almost never wore it up. Perhaps it was due to my butter fingers or the fact that I am as experienced with hair as a llama is with rollerblades, but the whole notion of “throwing my locks up into a perfectly messy bun” was non-existent. I would, without fail, end up with a dinosaur bump on the top of my head, a rat tail at the base of my neck, or a knot so complex that I became far too familiar with the term “rat’s nest.”
However, since impulsively chopping off my hair a few months ago I have started experimenting with different ways to wear my hair. I don’t have the most incredible hair in that it’s not thick and luscious like a Victoria’s Secret model, nor does it make a stylist throw his hands up in excitement as if he’s just seen a mouse, but it’s thin, wavy, and there’s lots of it. In short: it’s manageable and malleable.
As an avid admirer of the bun elite — aka the types of women who can just throw their hair up into a perfectly messy bun while running on the treadmill — I present you with three bun varieties that I’ve come to master thanks to many frustrating mornings, afternoons, and evenings in front of the mirror. And with them of course comes three very different looks from beachy and casual to sweet and sophisticated to chic and edgy.
The Low Messy Knot
This bun is perhaps the easiest to achieve. Leaving just a few strands in the front loose, gather your hair back into a ponytail at the base of your neck. Then pull it through an elastic twice, the second time only pulling it half way through, twisting the hair into a loose knot and securing with the rubberband. Give your scalp a little massage to loosen up the roots and go about your day as recklessly as possible. The messier the better is all I have to say on this. Think sex hair.
The Wispy Ballerina Bun
This is the kind of bun that would have gotten me in loads of trouble back in my days as a hardcore ballerina. But since I’m no longer doing tondues seven days a week, I can enjoy this kind of sloppy bun as much as I enjoy a trip to In-n-Out Burger. To achieve this look simply pull your hair up into a high, messy pony tail and secure with an elastic band. Wrap the ponytail around the base as if you were making a snails shell. Lock everything in place with a few bobby pins and then pull some strands out from the bun as well as around the front of your hairline. Embrace those wisps we all try so hard to hide!
The Power Bun
I am a very recent advocate of the slicked dominatrix bun. I always thought it would make my face look shapeless like a potato or that it would feel too reminiscent of my aforementioned hardcore ballerina days. But alas the slicked bun is as powerful a tool as red lipstick. With a little water, a brush, and some rock-solid hairspray this is a speedy way to look put together on even your most hungover of days. It’s also the kind of bun you might want to wear to a shindig that results in a next-day hangover. To achieve it, slick your hair back in a low ponytail at the base of your neck. Twist that horse’s tail into a snail shell and secure with bobby pins and hairspray.
Voila! Au revoir!
I ♥ Duane Reade
The drug store is one of my favorite places on earth. Whether I’m going in to refill a prescription or buying a new batch of toilet paper, I inevitably walk out with a plastic bag full of extra unnecessary goodies. And it’s never a “quick trip”. I can spend hours in Duane Reade, meandering through every aisle from lotions to bandaids, excited at the prospect of filling my medicine, beauty, and cleaning cabinets with more more more!
There’s something thrilling about testing new products, especially when they’re sold at moderate prices. I don’t think I’ve ever purchased the same toothbrush twice in a row (I like to change up the bristles and colors!), and discovering new cleaning products gets me as excited as the house wife I have yet to become.
Since I discuss a lot of my pricier beauty products on here, I thought I’d share with you some of my latest discoveries and staples that can be purchased at your closest Walgreens, Duane Reade, Rite Aid, CVS, and if you’re lucky, grocery store.
I buy a significant amount of my lipstick from Duane Reade. My favorite brand is Revlon as I find it lasts the longest, has the largest variety of colors, and offers a number of different finishes from matte to shiny. I’ve also recently become obsessed with Maybelline “Baby Lips”. I have them in every color and find that they’re perfect for when I want something a bit more subtle. They also smell and taste good…
Even though DiorShow Mascara is my #1 go-to, I like to switch up brands every once in awhile. L’Oreal’s Power Volume Collagen mascara coats the lashes evenly while still giving a touch of clump for that extra full look. I’m still mastering the art of the cat eye, but have found the angular brush and dense color in Revlon’s Color Stay eyeliner to yield the best results. Now it’s all about steadying my hands. And while I’m not big on eyeshadow, I love the color variety in these CoverGirl and Revlon palettes.
The lotion aisle may be my biggest time waster, which is kind of silly since I really don’t moisturize my body enough. I’ve tried a number of different brands but Cetaphil remains the winner for least greasy application. I go through face lotion by the month and sometimes it’s just not worth spending a fortune on. So I alternate each month using either Dr. Jart’s Water Sure Gel from Sephora or Garnier’s Moisturizing Gel (they’re both ridiculously refreshing). I cannot praise Aquaphor enough. From nurturing my chapped lips to hydrating dry skin on the go, these tubes can be found in every single one of my handbags.
Since I wear mascara and eyeliner on a daily basis, finding a good eye makeup remover is crucial for the cleanliness of my white pillow cases. I use Dove Cold Cream for the initial removal and then follow up with Neutrogena’s Oil-Free Eye Makeup Remover. I like to keep Almay Makeup Eraser Sticks with me for days when my liner or mascara get a little too smudgy.
I used to use Dove’s deodorant religiously. But then my friend introduced me to a natural deodorizer that works as well as an antiperspirant and smells divine. Arm & Hammer’s Natural Deodorizer feels like butter when I put it on and lasts me throughout the day unlike many of the other natural deodorants I’ve tried. After washing my face at night, I like to use a light toner to wipe off any extra dirt or makeup. Simple’s Soothing Facial Toner is alcohol free and leaves my skin looking as refreshed as it could look at the end of the day. And lastly, I’m all for weekly exfoliation. Since I go through these pretty quickly, I try not to spend too much money on them. Burt’s Bees Honey & Shea Sugar Scrub is moderately priced, smells like candy, and does a heavy duty job on scrubbing away any excess skin.
Do you have any drug store favorites? If you do tell me so I can go waste some more time in my favorite store.