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Curing the Winter Doldrums!

Sunday, January 27, 2013

I've been meaning to get this post up for a while now! Today presented the perfect opportunity seems both our vehicles are frozen solid and covered in a sheet of ice! Which brings me to the subject of this post: If it’s cold enough outside to freeze my car into a solid ice cube, winter skin, hair, body is practically inevitable. That dry flakey dull looking skin topped off with straw-ey dry lifeless hair. It’s happening. At least it was! Until I did some research and took a trip to Sephora (and the drug store) :)

Here are a few of my top beauty finds to cure the winter doldrums.

1. Take the time to give yourself a full facial. That means, deep cleansing, exfoliating (using baking soda) toning and a mask. Winter time can get busy so it's easy to forget to give your skin a little tlc. You'll be amazed what spending 15 minutes to treat your skin will do for the way you feel. Finish your at home facial with a big drink of moisture for your skin. Nighttime is the perfect time to load up on heavy moisturizer. Your skin renews itself while you sleep. Give it a little boost with luxurious moisture and you are sure to wake up glowing. I love St. Ives Collagen moisturizer its around $5.00 at the drugstore and i've had it for over a year and I use it very liberally. It's a great bang for your buck! *it is a little heavy for day time wear under makeup, so I prefer to use it at night only! My skin is very sensitive and I have never experienced a reaction to this! Love it.
2. Switching up your everyday cleanser can make a world of difference! During the summertime I had been using an acne oil free cleanser and I hadn't taken the time to make the switch back to a less drying winter cleanser. My favorite is another cheap gold mine of a product: Cetaphil gentle bar cleanser. I learned of this little gem while in Esthetician school. The spa girls fell in love with it and before the course was over we traded our discounted professional products for this lowly little bar of white soap....Its seriously amazing. Removes all traces of makeup including eye makeup without irritating or drying. Its great stuff! Best of all? I think its 4.99?

3. Sort of along the same lines of switching up cleanser is switching your foundation. The same foundation formula that looks awesome during the summertime will not look the same in the dead of winter. Your skin texture and shade changes through out the seasons and so should your foundation. So while a matte foundation (same goes for powder foundations) looks great in the summer ( *I love dream matte mousse by Maybelline) and keeps your skin from looking shiny and oily during the summer months, in the winter it doesn't seem to work its magic in the same way. I always prefer a more matte look as a opposed to a dewier finish, which is just a personal makeup preference but using a foundation that’s TOO matte over dry skin in the winter time can  look dull and chalky and accentuate dryness and imperfections, and we don't want that!! I found a great matte foundation that I fell in love with that is still smooth moisturizing, creamy, and matte but without the dullness my summer foundation tends to give me in the wintertime.  $36.00 @Sephora--Amazing product!

*Sometimes pressed powder is also a culprit for making your skin look dull and ashy. Try a translucent powder instead of a powder matching your foundation. I love the translucent mineral veil by Bare minerals. Its just a pure white powder that sets makeup without adding another layer of makeup to your foundation. It blots out shine but doesn't leave a cakey, ashy texture like pressed powder can.

4. I know practically ALL makeup artists SWEAR but moisturizing your skin before applying makeup. I like the idea, but I couldn't stand that when I would use moisturizer in the morning it melted my makeup right off, and I was left with blotchy makeup and a shiny looking face 20 minutes after applied! Until I found the RIGHT moisturizer! Not too water based and not too oily. I think finding a moisturizing serum is the key, as opposed to a cream under makeup. I found this stuff at TJ MAXX its actually really great stuff!  I thoroughly moisturizes, and my skin completely drinks it in less than a minute without any shiny or oily residue to hide under makeup. Bielenda Collagen Serum $6.99 at TJ Maxx * Estee Lauder has excellent moisturizing serums as well, that are worth checking out! 

5. Find a fun new blush shade to liven up a winter complexion! Okay I realize this blush looks completely crazy, but I think it’s so far my FAVORITE winter find.  I'm so glad I had the guts to try it on because I LOVE it! I've never LOVED a blush before; to me...blush is just blush...until I found this beauty! It looks crazy red in the palette but it is gorgeous when blended correctly! I normally wore more of a rosy pinky colored blush but the red/orange hue (when used sparingly) is a much more natural shade of glow! Sort of like the color my cheeks get when I’ve had a good workout or when i've spent a day in the sun. Your skin looks awesome after a sweat session and or a day at the beach and this blush mimics it perfectly! I love it so much! Probably a little bright for really light complexions but for women with olive shades like me, its to die for! I dare you to try it! You will fall in blush love! It’s called 'Exhibit A' by NARS. Sephora $28.00

6. I've talked a lot about the face but we can’t ignore the body. What good is a luminously moisturized face when you've got a dry scaly body huh? I like to treat my entire body to a homemade olive oil/brown sugar scrub, 2-3 times a week.  I use about a half cup of brown sugar and a half tablespoon of olive oil mix it up in a small bowl and bring it into the shower and exfoliate head to toe. I swear olive oil serves as THE best shaving cream you can buy! I finish it up by slathering rich cocoa butter body oil before bed (make sure you give it 15-20 minutes to completely soak in so you don’t oil stain your sheets!) a little goes a long way! Don't over do it! All you need is about the size of a penny for your whole body! 

7. Let's talk about the cure for winter hair! Nothing freshens up your mane like a professional moisturizing treatment and a trimming off dead ends, but there are plenty of ways to combat winter hair at home too in between visits to the salon. I know I go on and on every post about my love for coconut oil and here we go again: My favorite wintertime hair solution is a hot coconut oil treatment.  Coconut oil is the beauty miracle product. I use it for EVERYTHING…removing makeup, dry skin, dry hair-- it does it all! You can buy a whole jar of it for less than 10 dollars at the grocery store. Heat it up in the microwave for 1:00 or until it’s warm almost hot to the touch and has completely liquefied. Apply throughout your hair paying special attention to your ends, wrap in a towel and wait 20 minutes and rinse and cleanse with a deep cleansing shampoo (I like Neutrogena anti-residue shampoo) $6.00 at the drugstore. It works great for removing hair masks and hot oil treatments, and its recommended to be used twice a week to remove dulling product build up! Win win.

8. People have used aromatherapy for years to cure the winter doldrums! Different scents and essential oils in perfume can affect your mood and how you feel about yourself. Spritzing on a light pretty scent will make you more lively springy and fresh even in the dead of winter! It has been said that Orange blossom is of the most uplifting of the essential oils. This Prada scent 'Infusion d'Iris'  is infused with mandarin, orange blossom and iris. Its to die for! I'm crazy about it! Ask for a free sample to try it out at Sephora! You'll feel better in no time!

9.  One of the best tricks in the book of achieving luminous skin in the middle of winter is using a highlighter. A highlighter is basically a cream or powder that attracts light to your face. When our skin is dull it lacks radiance. Achieving radiance is easy. Find a good cream or powder than has an iridescent sheen to it...iridescent NOT sparkly. The finer the iridescence the better. I was given a free sample of Bare minerals eye shadow primer and discovered it works great as a highlighter all over my face! Its not too shiny or sparkly very subtle and gives just a soft glow when worn under foundation highlighting cheek bones and bridge of the nose, and under the brow bones, it beautifully illuminates places where the light naturally hits your face.

Bare Minerals Prime time eyeshadow primer in 'Brightening pearl' $18.00 Sephora.

10. Get a spray tan! Spray tan! Spray tans have come leaps and bounds from the days of orange pumpkin skin! Today's spray tans in my opinion look better than real tans. They are 
-more even
-less brown
-more golden (think, Florida tan)
-less orangey than a natural tan
-fade naturally
+you dont have to deal with the dryness you get from a real tan! 
I am a huge fan! I swear by the Versa Spa spray tan! I suggest getting a spray tan in the evening on a weekend so that you can let the tan develop for as many hours as possible before showering. Nothing like waking up in the middle of January looking like you woke up from a nap on a beach in the tropics! 

Here is how to find a versa spa spray tan near you! 
11.  I save the best for last! The best cure of all for the winter 'slugs' is getting active! Sweating makes you feel beautiful from the inside out. When you take care of your body it will show in your skin your hair, the whites of your eyes and the sparkle in your smile! Natural beauty comes from within! Drink lots of water and sweat out those toxins even if you can only squeeze in 15 minutes a day! Remeber, the nutrients you put into your body is what all those new cells your body is making (including skin cells) are made of! Do you want to be made of greasy french fries?...Didnt think so ;)

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