Red Carpet Beauty Secrets

Red Carpet BeautyWho doesn’t love watching the award shows? The celebs all dressed up in stunning gowns looking absolutely radiant with their glowing skin.

It’s mind blowing to see many of the same celebrities year after looking as if they haven’t aged, in fact they appear to be looking younger every year. How do they do that?

Often times, celebs have personal chefs, trainers, and their dermatologists/estheticians/plastic surgeons on speed dial. Good news girls…You don’t need to be rich and famous to have the same privileges…

As an expert in the world of beauty for 20 years working as a celebrity makeup artist and skincare expert I am here to tell you that there is a DIY approach that will bring you some pretty close results.

My secret beauty routine that I’ve designed for myself as well as my clients; Healthy Diet + Exercise + Breakthrough Skin Care Technology

Diet:

Get rid of the toxins. Our skin is our largest organ. Healthy skin is a direct result of a healthy lifestyle. We are what we eat. Alcohol, Cigarettes, fast or fried food are all a sure fire way to detract from your goal of good health- and good skin.

Drink 6-8 glasses of water a day. I know you know this…so are you doing it? Water is the best way to hydrate internally as well as flush out those impurities. Add some lemon if you aren’t a fan of the plain taste. You want that glow, right?

Eat lots of fruits and veggies! I make green juice everyday consisting of fresh fruits and vegetables high in vitamins and anti-oxidants. My faves are Kale, Spinach, Cucumber, Apple, Carrots and anything else I desire. My skin has improved immensely since incorporating this into my beauty routine…not to mention- my immune system is kicking!

Exercise increases the oxygen in our blood which gives us a healthy glow- not to mention keeps our weight down so we feel better in our clothes. Hate the gym? Take a dance class! Get moving!

Skincare:

The best foundation is beautiful skin. I have packages arriving at my door weekly from some of the top skincare and makeup lines on the planet- asking me to try their products. Not to mention, I am a product junkie always searching for the latest in skincare technology… and I too have a few Dermatologists on speed dial.
So many of you are probably thinking…okay then…spill! Alrightly then…

Modern technology has made so many advances that can help us improve our skin and help us reclaim a more youthful appearance- without plastic surgery. Amen!

Laser

If you can afford it, it’s worth it. Many of my clients starting having laser treatments about five years ago and when I saw the results, I started too. Fraxel or Co2 lasers among many others will help rebuild collagen and improve elasticity, considerably. To know what’s best for you, schedule a consultation with a reputable dermatologist or plastic surgeon. Cost is about $1000 dollars and up. I have laser once a year. LOVE!

Exfoliate. Our skin’s naturally exfoliates every 28 days…until we start to age. Yikers…when the process slows down, we have some build up going on. And dead skin is not pretty. Therefore, we need a little assistance getting that process to speed up. Every two months, I visit my esthetician for a facial and a glycolic acid peel. If facials are a little costly, you can give yourself facials at home and use an exfoliant a couple times a week which contains glycolic to keep those pesky dead skin cells from building up. Our moisturizers aren’t work as well if we have a layer of dead skin. EWE!

Retin A.  Recently I asked my Dermatolgist about the Retin-A “craze”. Is it really that big of a deal? She said yes. Retin-A or retinoids play a huge role in speeding up the exfoliation process and building collagen! Retin-A is only prescribed by a doctor. However there are many products that contain vitamin A or retinoids…very similar. The presription is obviously going to be stronger. I only use it a couple times a week. Warning: use once or twice a week to begin with because it can make your face peel a bit more than usual.

Anti-oxidants.  We are exposed to environmental elements that damage our skin and in most cases we have already had some damage done. In order to rebuild and protect…Anti-oxidants are a must. I recommend that you choose a serum or daytime moisturizer which contains vitamins such as C, E, and A (remember the importance of vitamin A?)- along with an SPF! Sun damage is up there on that list with smoking as the fastest way to looking older, not to mention putting yourself at risk for skin cancer.

Eyes are the windows to our soul and we sure don’t want them to look old and wrinkly, do we? Think of the skin under your eyes being as thin as tissue paper and your face like construction paper. Which one is going to break down first? Again, protect your eyes daily with a good eye cream.

Night time is when our skin repairs itself. Think about it, we sleep we recharge, restore and renew. So does our skin…so give your face, neck and declotee the best chance to boost it’s moisture and restore.

Good health along with Skincare and technology= Show stopper! Here’s to the DIY Celeb Glow! We don’t need to be rich and famous to look and feel amazing, do we girls?

Recipe for an at Home Zen Spa Experience

imagesI went to get my nails done today and of course the first thing the nail tech asked me was what color? I replied soft brown or beige. She looked at me as if I was an alien who just sat down. Beige? Beige is boring…so plain…so simple. Everyone else is wearing dark colors for Fall…don’t you want to join in the Fall festivities?

 

For a moment I felt like a weirdo. Then in the next few seconds I thought, no I am not a weirdo! I want beige!

In fact, I began loving the idea of beige even more as I started to think about what beige represents to me.   It’s soft, simple, clean, timeless, like a pottery barn magazine, a spa, a zen place. Personally, I am gearing up for the change of season by creating more zen in my home as well as some zen in my daily life.   As a busy mom, I am running around taking care of everyone else, I have made a vow to take care of myself too. I want to spend more time feeling cozy, warm and relaxed rather than crazed. Burnt orange or red will do another time. But not today.

After my manicure, I went home and decided to create a little spa experience for myself. If you are looking to create some zen for yourself, Here are a few of my simple tips to create your own Spa experience in the comfort of your home…to take care of the one person that you may put on the back burner way too often..YOU!

Recipe to create you Zen At Home Spa Experience:

Ingredients:

Soft towels

Bath tub

Candles

Soft music

Book (optional)

Herbal DeCaf Tea (Celestial Seasons- Camomile/Lavender is my fave)

Homemade Sugar Body Scrub: Mix 1 cup olive oil with 2 cups of raw sugar and add essential oil if desired.

Moisturizing Body Bar or Wash

Homemade Face Mask: 1 cup of oatmeal cooked, 1 tablespoon honey, egg whites from one egg (to hold ingredients together ). Mix and apply to a clean face for 5-10 minutes. Gently rinse Oatmeal and honey soothes and moisturizes the skin.

 Directions:

  1. Draw lukewarm bath (not too hot as hot water robs our skin of moisture). Add some bubble bath if you prefer.   Just remember, the oil from the home made body scrub will moisturize your body while you are in your bath.
  2. Light candles, start music, grab your book
  1. Apply face mask to face and neck. Avoiding eye and lip area
  1. Use Sugar Body Scrub to gently exfoliate body- (avoid face and neck) leaving your skin moisturized by olive oil. Follow with gentle body wash if needed. (I like to mix body wash with a little sugar scrub mixture and gently massage into skin).
  1. Lie back and sip tea, listen to music or read, and relax.
  1. Once you have rinsed body and washed face mask off- gently towel dry and apply eye cream and night cream.
  1. Enjoy the peaceful sleep (don’t forget to blow out the candles)

Make-Up Trends Spring-Summer 2014

Over the years I’ve worked backstage at the world-famous Fashion Weeks in New York City with the teeny-tiny models and the outrageous designs they wear and you know what? I loved every minute of it! While I understand those wild, over-the-top ensembles along with the makeup and hairstyles we created to compliment them might seem outlandish, the reality is that all that creativity and the total fearlessness of the designer, inspires the rest of us. When those innovative ideas and cutting-edge styles flood the market it enables people to interpret their own values into their fashions in fresh new ways.

Here are a few trends for Spring/Summer of 2014 born on the runways that I feel are fun and doable for those of us who want to update our look and not feel as if we look a bit overdone!

The raw-bare faced beauty look:

bare

This little or no makeup look was quite the trend on the runways during the Spring/Summer fashion shows for 2014. I find this au natural look to be a welcoming change towards enhancing the true beauty of every woman. Plus, as the temps rise, women typically don’t like to wear a lot of makeup. To achieve this look I like to start with hydrated skin. A quick skincare tip- even though it’s warm outside, your skin still needs hydration. The heat can quickly dehydrate your skin and that can make your makeup look worse.

Face:
For foundation, try a moisturizer that is already tinted with a foundation or mix a few drops of your liquid foundation with your moisturizer before applying to your skin (preferably with an SPF of 15 or higher). My favorite tinted moisturizers contain a pore minimizer, an SPF and come in a matte finish. They provide a clean and polished looking coverage with a nice matte finish.

Eyes:
For eyes, avoid dark shadows and liners. Use soft neutral shades with little or no liner.

Cheeks:
Blush colors should be in the soft coral or rose shades to create a healthy glow.

Lips:
Lips should remain neutral or a soft gloss or tinted lip balm.

The Bronzed Look:

bronze

This gorgeous sun kissed look is really popular trend this season! The good news is that it is achievable without having to spend time in the sun (which is the number one cause of aging!)

Face: Apply a bronzing powder or apricot colored blush to your cheeks, temple area and forehead. Less is more as bronzers tend to get darker when skin gets oily from the warm temperatures outside.

Eyes:  Apply a soft bronze shadow to lids. Avoid heavy liners as this look is again a soft natural look. For an added “pop” apply a gold toned shadow to the center of your lid.

Lips: To finish this sun kissed look choose a neutral lipstick shade with a touch of bronze or a gloss with a bronze tone.

Bold Lips!

lips

I love this trend as I am always preaching the importance of stepping out and wearing brighter shades of lipstick. This is why: the rule is when you wear brighter lip shades you actually brighten your face and eyes and make your skin appear more flawless. A touch of gloss in the middle will really finish off your look and create a sexier look.

It might seem bold for what you are used to but go for it! Now you have an excuse to step out and give it a try.

Design is all about experimenting with textures, colors, fabrics, patterns and styles. Good designers and makeup artists find new ways to express what makes us feel beautiful. That’s what you’re doing when it comes to incorporating trends into your Spring/Summer makeup routine and your wardrobe. You become your own designer!

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Naked in a room full of people

By Leah Carey

Last night I had a crazy dream about being in an audition factory for reality television shows.  It really was like a factory – they’d audition a whole crowd of people and then they’d dismiss them and the another bus would show up and the whole thing would start again.

And they didn’t just audition to be the next Design Star or Top Model or singer or dancer or…fill in the blank.

No, they came in and went through every talent they had – sang, danced, cooked, sewed, put on a bikini, and threw a hissy fit.  And then the casting agents decided which shows they would filter the people into. They weren’t there because they had “x” talent that was just waiting to be discovered.  No, they just wanted to be on TV.  No matter what.  Whatever it took, they would do it.

I think I was there as a journalist to write a story.  At some point during the dream, I went into a restroom and when I came out, I realized I was naked on top.

This “breasts exposed in public” dream is not uncommon for me (wow, that feels oddly private to admit…)

I don’t subscribe to a lot of traditional dream interpretation – I think that what a tiger means to ME at that moment in my life is far more important than what some “expert” says tigers mean in dreams. But when I had this type of dream yet again a couple weeks ago, I decided to look it up.  And lo and behold, the description at Dream Moods made sense to me:

Becoming mortified at the realization that you are naked in public, reflects your vulnerability or feelings of shamefulness. You may be hiding something and are afraid that others can see right through you. Metaphorically, clothes are a means of concealment. …

Image courtesy of Ambro / FreeDigitalPhotos.net
Image courtesy of Ambro / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Often times, when you realize that you are naked in your dream, no one else seems to notice. Everyone else in the dream is going about their business without giving a second look at your nakedness. If this happens in your dream, then it implies that your fears are unfounded; no one will notice except you. …

If you dream that you are proud of your nakedness and show no embarrassment or shame, then it symbolizes your unrestricted freedom. You have nothing to hide and are proud of who you are. The dream is about a new sense of honesty, openness, and a carefree nature.

Up until that morning, my dreams always matched the first two paragraphs perfectly – I was surprised and embarrassed to find myself without clothing in public, but no one else seemed to really notice.

Here’s the remarkable thing – when the “breasts exposed in public” dream showed up last night, my first thought was, “I don’t have a shirt on. There are people around and no one notices. This must be a dream.”

WHAT?!?!  That is all of the second time EVER that inside a dream I’ve realized that I was dreaming!

Then the next thought was even more interesting: “If this is a dream then there’s no reason to be embarrassed.  I think it symbolizes being vulnerable and being free, so I might as well enjoy it!”

At which point another person walked into the room also without clothing on.  Another naked person has NEVER appeared in my “in public without clothing” dreams before.

This is new dream territory!  I accept being vulnerable and matching vulnerability immediately walks into the picture.  Now that’s a dream I can get into!

I can hardly wait to see what will happen next!

Have you got any good dream stories to share?  I’d love to hear them!  :-)

Weed or Flower?

By Temple Hayes

4699417817_8ce2b69032_nA certain king had two servants. To the first he said, “I want you to travel for six months through my kingdom and bring back a sample of every weed you can find.”

To the second servant the king said, “I want you to travel through my kingdom for six months and bring back a sample of every flower you can find.”

Six months later, both servants stood before the king. To the first, the king asked, “Have you carried out my command?” The first servant answered, I have, and I was amazed to find there were so many weeds in the kingdom. In fact, there is nothing but weeds in this kingdom!”

To the king’s question the second servant also answered, “I have, and I am amazed how many beautiful flowers there are in the kingdom. In fact, there is nothing but beautiful flowers in this kingdom!”

These two servants each found what they were looking for. So do we.

Comfortable In Our Own Skin

Women have begun not only talking about body image issues, but writing body image articles and body images blogs. We’re celebrating the women who are taking back body image with their own words. We’ve gathered our favorite body image reads. You won’t want to miss a single one of these. Photo credit: Sam Edwards/ Caiaimage/ Getty Images
Women have begun not only talking about body image issues, but writing body image articles and body images blogs. We’re celebrating the women who are taking back body image with their own words. We’ve gathered our favorite body image reads. You won’t want to miss a single one of these.
Photo credit: Sam Edwards/ Caiaimage/ Getty Images

Women hate their bodies. Does this phrase anger you? Maybe. Surprise you? Probably not. While this isn’t true of all women, most that you meet have a body part they wouldn’t mind changing, hiding, ignoring. These body image issues are prevalent and affect women’s happiness and the way they see their lives. We want to change that and the best path we know to change is open dialogue. We’ve found amazing reading about body image written by real women for the sole purpose of opening the conversation and taking us to the point where the phrase “women hate their bodies” is shocking.

Don’t ever look back in regret, truly live your beauty and focus on what’s right with you rather than what’s wrong.

Michelle Phillips is a self-esteem coach and the author of the bestselling beauty and self-esteem book The Beauty Blueprint — 8 Steps to Building the Life and Look of your Dreams. Phillips works with many women and an inordinate — but not surprising — number of her sessions end up focused on body image. She’s recently made a shift in her thinking, however, that’s made all the difference for her and for her clients. Phillips explains, “When working with a coaching client I had an epiphany: The negative thoughts I have about my body need to come to a screeching halt.” Phillips adds, “Don’t ever look back in regret, truly live your beauty and focus on what’s right with you rather than what’s wrong. It may not seem easy at first but freeing yourself of negative thoughts is a huge step towards living a truly beautiful life and achieving a healthy body. The first, and possibly the most crucial step on that path, though, is to start loving the body you have right now.”

We agree with Phillips and want to open this conversation with you. Six women writers are doing just that by penning — or typing — their thoughts on body image. Join in these conversations, it’ll be our collective first steps toward women love their bodies becoming our norm.

Read more…

Whose voice is running in your head?

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We all have them; those voices in our head that cause fear and doubt and undermine our lives. Often, they are the voices of people who we trusted and felt safe around but betrayed that security, and in the process, created a life-long internal battle for our self-esteem. It could be the voice of a parent, love interest, or even a teacher or boss whose opinion you valued, and now their words hang over your heart. “Don’t eat that or you’ll get fat.” “Don’t bother trying that you’re not capable.”

I know those voices all too well. Several years ago, after going through a difficult divorce, I lost my job of 12 years, and found myself raising three small children with no money. For months I paid my bills with credit cards and when those ran out, I applied for welfare. As I struggled through a downward spiral, voices from my past played like a broken record telling me that I wasn’t good enough, smart enough, or pretty enough. That was until my best friend Lori called and told me she had stage four colon cancer.

I realized at that moment life was too short to listen to any voice other than mine. I decided that whatever was playing in my head, and no matter who said it, it was time to erase the tape and live my beauty! When I did, my life changed dramatically.

So how do you erase and reprogram your positive inner dialogue?

You can start by writing down all the negative inner dialogue that runs through your mind. For each bit, answer this question: What was the true intent behind the statement, meaning, who made it and why? Here’s a story to help you get the gist of what I want you to do. . . .

I was working with a client shortly after her husband left her. After weeks of self-esteem coaching, she wanted to go shopping to create a new look that matched her new life. As a celebrity stylist and life coach it’s always fun to help women bring their inner beauty to life through a look that matches who they are. After trying on several flattering outfits, however, she looked dejected and stared at the dressing-room floor.

“I have to tell you something,” she said. I braced myself because, by now, I’ve learned that clients who are making bold changes also confront even bigger fears. “I think my stomach looks terrible in all these clothes.”

“What?” I gasped. “You look incredible! You have a great body. Where is this coming from? What is the voice in your head saying exactly?”

“It’s my ex’s voice,” she confessed. “He told me that I was getting fat, and he didn’t want to have sex with me anymore.”

“What was his genuine intention behind that statement?” I asked.

“To hurt me, I guess.”

“So, it wasn’t true, right? He only said it to upset you. Do you see the difference?”
She nodded, and relief washed over her face. The inner voice that had damaged her so deeply wasn’t true, and now she saw it for what is was; a lie. She stood up straighter and smiled, and I knew she was on her way to becoming a free woman.

Whose voice is running through your head? Now it’s your turn to do this exercise so that you can finally be free of any shaming voices that hold you back. And even if the original intention was positive—as a way to protect you, for instance—the result may still be the same. This exercise enables you to observe this dialogue for what it truly is and no longer allow it to control you.

Love,
Michelle