Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Fitness Tips: How To Maintain That Bathing Suit Body

After posting the bathing suit tips article, I realized that you'd probably want some tips on how to get that "bathing suit body" you've been wanting to get but have been putting off (I know, I'm right there with you!)

Right now I sit in pain because for the past week I've been working out like a professional body builder. Ok, that's an exaggeration, but you get the picture. My boyfriend has been very patient with me as I scream every few hours, "Oh, cramp! Oh, pain!"

So, if you need some tips on what not to eat to maintain that oh, so hot bathing suit body, check out this article: The 6 Worst Swimsuit Foods.

And for those of you who want some fitness tips to get super flat abs, check out this video courtesy of Marie Claire TV...

Photo Credit: Lotus Head

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Money Buys Things, Not Class

Cosmopolitan IIWhen I read Helene's post, Luxury Is A State of Mind and It's Not For Sale, it brought to mind days of yore when I was a salesperson at Nordstrom's all bright and cheery. Once in a blue moon that I-have-money-so-kiss-my-feet person would walk in and not ask for help, they literally demanded to be helped. I once had a customer who kept slapping her hand on the counter and yelling, "Get me those shoes now!" I was seconds away from calling it quits that day, but I knew better than to allow that person to break me.

Although I live a pretty humble life and have worked hard for my money, I've never considered myself to be "better" than anyone else just because I may be able to acquire some of the nicer things in life. I never walk into a store all hotsy-totsy and if I perceive a salesperson to be rude, I'll say - with a nice smile on my face, of course - that their actions were uncalled for.

It is interesting to see what money does to people. As Helene said, " buys things not class."

And I say: Money doesn't buy beauty!

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Happy 25th Anniversary, Shu Uemura!

On this day back in 1928, a Japanese makeup artist by the name of Shu Uemura was born. Destined for greatness, he was the only male student at the Tokyo Beauty Academy and launched his first cosmetic product in 1960. He went on to open up his first boutique store in Tokyo in 1983. And as the old cliche goes, "And the rest is history..."

This year we celebrate the 25th Anniversary of the Shu Uemura brand and the summer 2008 collection is aptly named HANA-BI which means "fireworks". The collection includes 100% natural origin fragrances consisting of Despea water and unique color palettes that bring out the essence of each fragrance. Mr. Uemura himself commissioned Tokyo industrial designer, Gweneal Nicholas, to design the packaging for the collection.

I'll be trying out the eyeshadows in this collection, so stay tuned for a review!

Beauty Tip: Use Organic Skin Care Products

Beauty Tips graphicIn the past few years organic skin care products have gained popularity in the beauty industry. People are becoming more conscious about what they put on their body. I, for one, have been looking at the ingredients of skin care products that I've been using. Half of it is mumbo jumbo to me! Organic skin care products sounds so appealing now because they provide a healthier way to live. Who doesn't want to be healthy, right?

Think about all the pesticides, fertilizers, and all the synthetic chemicals they use on some of the plant extracts in many beauty products today. Now imagine those chemicals being absorbed by your skin and flowing through your blood stream!

For those of you who have sensitive skin, I do highly recommend natural skin care products - especially for people with allergies and eczema. I have my eye on Dr Hauschka products because everything is organic - from cosmetics to face and body care.

With summer here, I know many of you will be heading out to bask in the sun. According to the Skin Cancer Foundation, skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in the U.S. I assume it's because of the harsh chemicals we put on our body in addition to not wearing sunscreen when heading outside. Think about buying natural sunscreen products.

If you use organic products, I'd love to hear your testimony. Leave a comment!

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Sex and the City Giveaway Winners!

The Sex and the City Giveaway is over and the winners are in! Here is the list of 5 winners:

1. Theresa N.
2. Claire
3. Karyn C.
4. Marge Twain
5. Laddie

I will be contacting the winners via email to get addresses in order to send the goodies! Stay tuned later this week as I will be announcing another giveaway/contest...

Tips On Wearing a Bathing Suit and Looking Fabulous Over 40

Juicy Couture swimsuit

With summer in full swing I'm sure many of you have been on the hunt for a new swimsuit(s)! My step-mom and I went shopping for swimsuits a couple months ago and she was very hesitant about buying something because she thought she was "too old" to wear one! If you feel the same way then read on...

Dawn Del Russo, a high-profile stylist and owner of Bella Dawn Boutique, was kind enough to share some of her tips on looking fabulous in a swimsuit if you're over 40. Here's what she has to say...

* Monokinis (one piece swimsuit with cut outs) are oh so popular now and with the right section cut out it is very becoming. Even if you have a great body, go for a suit that signals sexy but doesn’t scream it!

* Hollywood glamour is a huge trend right now. It’s a sophisticated option for women over 40. You can choose a suit that covers more but oozes sex appeal.

* Color blocked swimwear is also hot this year, and let's you play up or down the areas of your body you love or hate. Wear a darker section to camouflage and a lighter color block on the area you want to highlight.

* Floral, prints, or stripes give the illusion of curves. This hides a large tummy. Also, look for a bathing suit with ruching it is a great way to hide a tummy. For heavier booties choose full-cut bottoms.

* Exotic ethnic prints are totally the in right now, and with the right cut can make you look ultra fabulous in the summer heat.

* Try skirted suits, and strapless styles that have more coverage.

* To accentuate a smaller bust, buy suits that create cleavage with underwire and padding. Also look for ruffles around the bust line.

* For a big chest, support your bust with a slightly higher neckline or a built-in bra. A little cleave is always sassy! Tankinis are ideal for large chests as well as halter styles with higher necklines.

* Petite ladies, don’t overwhelm a small frame with oversize prints or straps. A plunging neck or halter elongates your upper body. High-cut bottoms make legs appear longer and a padded top gives a little spice in just the right spot.

* For pear shape women mix eye-catching print tops with a solid bottom. Look for jewel tone, figure flattering colors.

* Toned sporty figures look gorgeous in graphics. Halters show off shoulders and minimize bust. Big prints create a curvier silhouette.

* If you are buying a suit to wear in a chlorinated pool, remember that cotton fades quickly and Lycra will not only fade, but stretch out in chlorine. Look for a blended fabric made of polyester. Some suits are made resistant to chlorine which will keep your suit looking fab the entire season in the sun.

Tips for our beautiful plus size bombshells...

* Consider built in support which offers more support than one with a shelf bra. Also, consider the best style for your body type.

* One-piece suits are more flattering to the larger figure than two-piece suits. A one-piece is slimming, and can accentuate the positive.

* A blouson style is also flattering to the larger figure - look for substantial straps.

* Keep in mind the line of the leg as some skirt styles and shorts can be ultra unflattering. These styles draw attention to the thigh while higher cut legs will offer a more slender illusion.

* Remember always check your back view. The tankini two-piece suits can work miracles for larger ladies in that the bottoms and tops can be purchased as separates.

* Never wear horizontal stripes or one color on top and a different one on the bottom. Look out for many internet shopping sites that are offering bathing suits in larger sizes to suit every shape. Online is a great place to find the perfect suit and try on in the comfort of your own home.

* Finally sarongs and tunics are great, and so stylish, a brilliant way to cover up without the “t-shirt” look.

Have a swimsuit tip to share? Leave a comment!

Find out more about Dawn Del Russo in my interview with her over at The Runway Scoop...

Related Post: Get In Shape For Bathing Suit Season

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

The Ugly Side of Fashion

Fashion. It can be a very inspiring and creative field to get into, but as we’ve seen in shows like Ugly Betty or movies like The Devil Wears Prada, fashion can be a cold, cold world. Everyone wants to look better, be dressed better, and know everything there is to know about fashion…Yes, there are some big egos at play in the fashion industry.

When you become a noted authority in the fashion industry, it’s inevitable that the claws will come out and energy vampires will try to bring you down. For whatever reason, many people don’t like to see other people become successful - and this attitude is prevalent in fashion.

Just like any business, the fashion world is full of people who have opinions. Some people are louder about their opinions than others while others don’t express their opinions and just get lost in the crowd. However, that’s just what they are - opinions - and each and every one of us has them. When it comes to fashion, no one is “right” and no one is “wrong”. The last time I checked, fashion is an expression of your personality and each and every one of us has a unique personality, right? Granted, there are some people that do need some guidance in finding their unique style and bringing out their true selves ;)

It pains me to see women try to bring other women down over jealousy and petty disputes. Criticizing someone on their style of dress makes me cringe.

Ok, I’m off my soapbox now…

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Beauty Quote of the Week on Aging

"Age is a case of mind over matter. If you don't mind, it don't matter."
--Satchel Paige, Baseball Hall of Famer

What if we all stopped keeping track of how old we were? Maybe we wouldn't be so obsessed with all this anti-aging stuff.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

H2Pro Flat Iron Review

Before and After Shots of using the H2Pro flat ironAwhile back I got a haircut and the stylist straightened my hair using one of those professional flat irons. It was so silky smooth that I couldn’t stop running my hands through it. You know that funny Sunsilk commercial where the women were flipping their hair around? That’s how I was feeling about my hair! I was sassy!

Well, now I can feel that way about my hair every day because I finally have a professional flat iron of my very own! For someone who has thick, course hair I find it difficult to keep it straight and smooth. I was using a cheap-o Conair flat iron (I think I paid $24 for it), but it only dried out my hair.

H2Pro flat ironThe H2Pro is a ceramic flat iron - much better than a regular flat iron because it prevents hair damage. I have the 302 YVI model which has a plate size of 1 ¼” and is great for long hair like mine. However, there is a smaller version with a 1" plate that works well for shorter hair.

The H2Pro is made of ceramic and tourmaline so it creates that smooth, shiny, and vibrant look. Also, I do like that you can use it on damp hair, although I think my hair looks much better if it’s completely dry before use. The temperature settings range from 140-450 degrees. I use the maximum heat setting because of my hair type.

Flat iron temperature settings
What I love most about the H2Pro is that it takes me less than 15 minutes to straighten my hair. The iron literally glides down my hair. And the best, best, best thing about it is that I don’t even have to put anything else in my hair to keep it looking silky smooth. Even the next day my hair still looks like I’ve just stepped out of a beauty salon!

Thanks to Misikko, an online beauty supplies shop, for the opportunity to try out this iron.

Monday, June 2, 2008

My Favorite Looks For Fall 2008

Although we've only just begun the summer season here in the U.S., my sights are set on fall and all the cool collections that were shown in New York, London, and Paris this past February. Fall is my favorite time of year because of all the layering...and jackets. Before I was a handbag lover, I was a jacket collector.

I created this collage to highlight some of my favorite looks from the fall/winter 2008-09 runway shows...

Fall Fashion 2008

Over at The Runway Scoop I've shared other favorite collections for fall...and although I probably wouldn't have the guts to wear them because of the pain potential, I really like these leopard print Baby Phat shoes.