Serum – A “Must” Addition to Your Beauty Routine

serumSometimes it feels like it’s a science – the amount of products and routines we have to balance with our beauty, whether it may be day or night, requires precision and investment.  Between the facial scrubs, exfoliation, moisturizer, eye cream, we MUST be hitting all the important areas and fulfilling all the necessity maintenance. Well, you are wrong to assume so.  We’d like to introduce you to a potentially new addition to your beauty routine; something a little bolder and a little fresher: serum.  Serum is a rather new product on market for beauty products, but a lot of women find it useful for more arduous skin problems, or for a vamp up on the quality of their current beauty regimen.  

What is this Serum You Speak of?  Serum addresses specific skin concerns- anything from dark spots, sun damage, wrinkles or acne.   It’s generally light in formulation but has a higher concentration of the performance ingredients needed for your problem areas.  

Why Should I use Serum? If you have problem areas that don’t clear up with your normal beauty routine products, you may need to vamp it up with something a little more potent- and serum offers this.  

What Kind of Ingredients Should I Expect to be in Serum?  Serum generally varies depending on the type of condition that you are treating. However, a majority of them contain beta glucans, salicylic acid (for serums that attack stubborn acne), zinc, aloe vera and tea tree extracts.  

How do I use serum? When skin is moist, it is generally more susceptible to products as it is more permeable.  After you use your cleanser, you want to immediately follow up with your toner.  While your skin is still absorbing the tone, apply your serum.  This way, the ingredients in your serum will infiltrate deeper in your skin in order for you to get better results over time.  You want to ideally incorporate it into your daily skin care routine and apply your serum once a day.   

What are Some Ways I Enhance the Effects of My Serum?  To have better results with your serum, apply your moisturizer in the fridge after every use.  Since your moisturizer is what you apply to your skin after your serum, the quality of your moisturizer can help boost the effects of your serum.  When moisturizer is applied cold on the skin, it pushes blood away from the skin in order to pull the more powerful ingredients of the serum into the skin.   

Get the Most Out of Your Shampooing Sessions

shampoo-gold-1479706We vary in frequency of hair shampooing usage as we all have different hair types and different preferences of texture for our tresses.  However, no matter what your frequency of your shampoo usage is, there are some specific things you can do to ensure that you are always getting the most out of your sessions with good ole shampoo.  Follow these tips to never feel like you wasted a session lathering up again:

  1. Limit your products for after you come out of your bathing duration.  “Less is more” – the golden ticket to a lot of beauty routines, and your hair is no exception.  Stick to one or two products to finish and start your hair. Be especially cautious of products that contain alcohol in them. If you use heating tools, be sure to accommodate at least one product for your heat protectant necessities.
  2. Cap it up with a shower cap.  Shower caps are a traditional utility that have been used by women to keep hair dry when bathing.  Your hair should ideally not be washed every day and the cap is used to protect your hair for the days that you aren’t washing it.  This also prevent your hair from catching any of the debris you wash out from your body as well as soaking up any body soap that may cause it to dry out.  
  3. Conditioner in specific areas.  A huge mistake women make when they do their weekly deep conditioning treatment is focusing equal attention to the scalp as the ends of their hair.  The scalp is where the natural oils manifest, and there’s no need to condition this area unless you want your hair to look unevenly greasy.  When you do choose a conditioner, keep a consistent conditioning schedule- once a week is generally ideal.
  4. Dry conditioner.  This type of product is especially preferred if you reside in colder climates.  To fight the day in and day out of constant depleting moisture, a dry conditioner should boost your hair to look beyond refreshed and lively.   
  5. Gauge your shampooing use and keep that schedule consistent.  A general rule of thumb to set this guideline is to address the thickness of your hair.  The thicker and coarser your hair, the more time in between shampoo sessions you want to maintain.  If you have ultra-thin hair, you might want to lather up your strands every other day.  Whereas, if you have thick coarse hair, every four days should be suitable.
  6. Mind how you sleep.  Your hair spends one third of its time being laying with you while you sleep. It’s important to create a good environment for it while you catch your precious zzz’s.  It’s pertinent to invest in satin sheets and to use something soft and loose (such as a scrunchy) to hold your hair above your head.  This will help maintain more moisture in your hair, prevent it from denting too much, and give your roots a little lift.  

Please remember that all of these steps won’t ensure you good hair – be sure to be a student in your products as well. Research products suitable for your hair type and visit a salon once every couple of months to ensure that your hair is being maintained in top condition.  

Fixes for All and Any Bad Hair Days

mici-1544546-1279x1705With all the beauty tools we have access to, it’s a million dollar thought to wonder how our ancestor female fashionistas were able to take care of their hair.  Believe it or not, they had a couple tricks up their sleeves that maybe we haven’t even been exposed to.  We have a cure for each problem you could face on any particular bad hair day.

Grease-la-weeze-greasy strands.  Greasy hair is a slippery mishap, and chances are, you experience this problem in the summer.  During the summer, our hair is exposed to our skin more as we sport bikinis and strapless blouses to combat the heat – all in which may lead to our hair soaking up lotion and sunscreen that you’ve applied throughout the day.  An old trick? Mix up a 1:1 lemon juice and water mix and apply to your scalp and hair. Leave around 15-20 minutes before washing with cool water.  

Hazardous environment – Sun damage and pollutants. This is a problem that can occur at any time of the year – especially if you live in a sunny urban city.  The same UV rays that can penetrate your skin deep and cause damage is the same UV rays that can wreak havoc on your hair.  The Sun and pollutants you are exposed to everyday can break down the keratin in your hair – the protective shield that keeps hair strength while preserving its sheen.   To treat this kind of hair, invest in a deep conditioning treatment and start wearing a hat for every time you’re exposed to the Sun.  The scalp is especially vulnerable to these hazards and can affect the new growth of hair coming in.   Protect your scalp by investing in more products with vitamin C, soy products or green tea. These will help protect your scalp while soothing any damage that already may be done.  

Fried, frizzy and frazzled hair.  Humidity and high heat are generally the root causes for flyaway hair.  During these type of climates, our hair is seeking out moisture and absorbing as much as possible. The high content of moisture that gets absorbed by your hair shaft breaks some of the chemical bonds that keep the sheen vibrancy of your hair while keeping it smooth.  For a quick fix, stay away from heavy products and hair sprays.  Invest in silicone-based products or light anti-free serum or spray.  The best natural products that have been used for generations? Olive oil and coconut oil.  

Flatter than Kansas- get some volume. Get some spruce in your hair’s bounce.  If you’re one of the 39 % of woman who suffer from pin straight strands, you need to invest in ingredients like sunflower, almond oil, coconut oil and soybeans to get your hair off its feet.  You may also want to try a new doo- something with layers that can catch a drift and lift up more than if your strands are being weighed down with length.  

What’s the Spiel on Charcoal?

charcoal-1491926-1278x855We’ve seen a lot of charcoal lately, and in some of the unprecedented places – beauty.  There have been some health benefits associated with charcoal, but our skin was the last place we suspected.  Acclaimed to be acne fighters, many beauty companies have started to create cleansers, facial masks and pore strips that are all charcoal based.  These products all originated from good intent, as charcoal has been researched to absorb dirt and oil.  Little research has been done on this effect on skin, and we have come to bring forth the straight facts about this new rising star of beauty.  

The charcoal we know built up after a fire is a little different from the charcoal used in beauty. The charcoal used in beauty and for medical practices has coined the name “activated charcoal”. This subtype of charcoal has been formulated to take on toxins and is used to treat poisonous reactions.    

Charcoal products generally contain other ingredients that could be the reason why you find benefits in using these products for your problem skin.  A lot of charcoal based products contain ingredients that subside the appearance of acne alone- such as salicylic acid.  Some also contain kaolin- a clay that can sweep up any extra skin oil that has built up on your skin.  Over time this can mean clearer skin fresher in appearance.

Charcoal has been found to absorb 100 to 200 times its weight.  For an organic product, this can be quite significant and we can see why it may be of good purpose for some of the beauty problems we face today.  

This sleek black mystery of the night can be used at nighttime to whiten up your teeth and cleanse your breathe. If you have any stains on your teeth caused by the subtle vices from day-to-day life: drinking coffee, smoking and alcohol, you will find much benefit in adding a little of charcoal paste to your tooth brush before your scrub away.  Charcoal can also kill the germs that create bad breath in your mouth through their toxin fighting power.  

Strip away buildup on your hair with charcoal.  Trust us, the hue and color of your hair won’t change if you use charcoal based products on your hair.  Since charcoal has the power to cut through unwarranted toxins, pollutants, oil and dirt, you can count on this same quality being applicable to your hair.  
  Although a lot of these suggestions and facts seem counterintuitive and a little bit on the crazy side, there has been a lot of craze within the beauty scene for the plethora of different uses charcoal can have in maintaining a beautiful appearance.  The only way to surely judge such value is to try it out for yourself.

Easy Beauty Mistakes You Don’t Want to Fall Victim To

sleep-1431410With the wealth of beauty information that is available via internet, podcasts, tutorials, etc., it’s easy to be swimming in what it is that we can do to foster a better set of skills to implement on our everyday makeup and beauty routines.  However, it’s possible to get over-informed and to follow the wrong set of assistance.  Even if you consider yourself a beauty master, you’re bound to pick up a skill or hint from the tips that we compiled to be some of the easiest, but most cringe worthy mistakes women make in the realm of beauty.

  1. Using the same brushes for too long and for too many products.  There’s a lot that can go wrong with this.  For one, you’re creating a rainbow accumulation of the multitude of products you use on a daily basis by using the same brush for each separate application.  This can lead to an uneven skin tone.  Additionally, by using the same brush consistently, the brush starts to ware down, lose bristles and fan out.  This means that your product gets unevenly distributed to your face and can even create a blotchy appearance.  Make sure to change out your brushes every couple of months, and every two weeks set aside some time to thoroughly clean your brushes in warm water.  
  2. Overusing bronzer.  All the fair maiden ladies out there can be guilty to this habit.  Bronzer is built to naturally mimic the sun and give your face that glow that can only be achieved by getting subtly kissed on a summer day.  By applying bronzer all over your face, your pale neckline will make the application look unnatural.  Opt to apply your bronzer to the bridge of your nose, cheekbones, chin and the hairline on your forehead to yield the best results.
  3. Sleeping with makeup on.  We have all had exhausting days where it seems like there is just no more energy- not even to wipe away the face assembly we put together in the morning.  Invest in some easy makeup remover wipes. There’s a variety of kinds that you can find suitable for your skin that come in easy sealable bags.  Put them next to your bed if you get to that point to ensure that you don’t’ hit the hay with your glam on.  Sleeping with makeup allows the products to seep into your pores which causing them to swell and enlarge. Not only that, but you can count on aged and dry skin as well.  
  4. Not setting your concealer.  A lot of us quickly pat away our products into our skin and call it a done job.  Well, this is only half of it.  It’s very likely that within the first hours of the day, your products will slide off and reveal your blemishes. To get that product to really stay on, invest in a translucent setting powder.  Not only will it polish your look up and finish any blending you may have to do, but it will add an extra cover to the products you already applied.  

  You’ve taken the first steps with embracing your glam beauty queen. Now, make sure to not take two steps forward and one step back by being victim to miniscule mistakes.