Saturday, November 26, 2011

Make Your Ex-Boyfriends Shirt Into A Cute New Dress!

The gals over at Colour Heels Diary have come up with up to 10 different ways you can wear your man's button up shirt. Grab one out of your boyfriend's closet, out of the box of your ex's stuff to give back to him, or maybe just one for yourself at the thrift store! Love these.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Favorite Beauty Blogs..

Cheryl's Beauty Blog. I have a prejudice against beauty bloggers who aren't beautiful. I'd rather take advice on how to look good by someone who.. well, looks good, Cheryl is just that: she is absolutely stunning and puts her makeup to good use- showing you different looks, tips, and products.

A Beauty Blog Written By A Giddy Princess. Another very beautiful and talented blogger. She has great reviews on tanning products, nail swatches and shares looks for day and night.

A Model Recommends. Written by a very successful model from the UK, Ruth Crilly recommends different products that she's tried out and shows you her tips and tricks for looking flawless before photo shoots.

Miss Natty's Beauty Diary Blog. Natalie is another gorgeous blogger- I love her detailed reviews and wide array of products and fashion accessories.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Some Reads of the Day..

Drugstore Doubles... the "Cosmetics Cop" Paula Begoun lists drugstore dupes of high end products for a great way to get the best results without breaking the bank!

 5 Genius Tricks I Learned From One of Hollywood's Best Makeup Artists via Glamour magazine.

In Their Closet.. these girls claim to "de-mystify" celebrity wardrobes.. and they do just that! They take recent looks celebrities have been seen in and tell you where the clothes, shoes, and accessories are from, how much they cost, and where to find cheaper versions for yourself!

Superfoods For Healthy, Young, Glowing Skin.

Do Your Facial Features Predict Your Personality? via BellaSugar

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Be Healthier, Happier, and Prettier.. in 30 Seconds or Less?

Skip the mascara or lipgloss- the one thing you need for touching up in your purse is... eye drops!

In the universal perception of beauty, there are certain things that make a person more attractive. Smooth lustrous hair, clear radiant skin, and sparkling white teeth. All of these traits are signs of youth and vitality; and from early human and animal development, choosing a mate with the best overall health was (and still is!) the most desirable.

Now here's what you might not know: your eyes are included. Research published in Ethology found that people with red or bloodshot eyes were perceived as sadder, less attractive, and unhealthy. Dr. Robert R. Provine, the lead author in the study, says, "If you met a friend with bloodshot eyes it would be unclear whether to offer sympathy or medical assistance, because red eyes may be a result of weeping, allergies or infectious diseases.

(credit: R. Provine)

...Given this discovery, eye drops that 'get the red out' can be considered beauty aids.'"

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Suncreen 101

James M. Spencer of Spencer Dermatology & Skin  Surgery Center in St. Petersburg, Florida shares some tips to keep you protected as summer heats up.
  • Use SPF 30 or higher. People usually apply using a smaller amount than they should, getting the protection closer to an SPF of 15. So unless you want to spend an extra 10 minutes rubbing it in, up your protection!
  • Skip the spray-on sunscreen. A mist is easy and quick, but lacks the coverage you need. To get the full protection listed on the bottle, you need to spray until your skin is moist and let it dry or rub it in.
  • Towels wipe off the SPF. If you wipe off after being in the ocean or pool, reapply! This applies to water- resistant suncreens too.
  • Staying in the shade is not good enough. Finding a shady spot to sit might keep you cooler, but it doesn't protect your skin as well as SPF will. You can get a sun burn in the shade too. 

Friday, August 12, 2011

10 Exercise Myths That Won't Go Away

By Madison Park, CNN

(CNN) -- We're all looking to maximize results while minimizing time and effort in the gym. That search for shortcuts has translated into a lot of myths about exercise. asked exercise physiologists, trainers and nutritionists about their most hated exercise myths.
Consider these the 10 persistent myths of fitness.
10) Your cardio machine is counting the calories you're burning.
"It doesn't mean anything," said Mark Macdonald, personal trainer and author of "Body Confidence" about the calorie numbers spit out by the cardio machine.
Some machines don't even ask for your weight or sex.
"It's not asking your body composition," he said. "If you're at 18% body fat, you're going to burn a lot more than if you're female at 35% body fat."
And how many people know their body fat percentage?
The number calculated by your machine is likely not accurate.
9) Women shouldn't lift weights because it'll make them bulky.
This one drives Alice Burron, a former female bodybuilder, crazy. She would spend four to five hours a day when she competed, trying to build muscles.
"You really have to overload those muscles to create bulk," said Burron. "It's very, very difficult."
Women have too much estrogen to build large amounts of bulk. Guys build muscles faster because they have testosterone.
So ladies, don't fear the barbells. Strength training helps decrease body fat, increase lean muscle mass and burn calories more efficiently.
The government's 2008 Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans recommended muscle-strengthening physical activity on at least three days of the week for kids and two or more for adults.
8) Heart rate monitors will let you know how hard you're working.
Heart rate monitoring is a flawed science.
The better detector of how hard you're working is not the newest, gee-whiz tech device, but your own body.
"The perceived exertion, your own sense of how hard you're working is a much more reliable of exercise intensity," said Matt Fitzgerald, senior editor of Competitor group.
Perceived exertion means it's your estimation of how hard you are working out and surprisingly, it's very accurate, he said.
"Your perception of your limit can change over time. So yeah, even your own perception isn't perfect. It's still better than heart rate monitor," Fitzgerald said.
Heart rates could falter depending on what kind of exercise you're doing.
The talk test can measure how intensely you're working out depending on whether you can talk in full sentences, short phrases or if you're barely able to muster a few words.
"It's best to learn to recognize your body's signals and get a better control of your effort," said Alex Hutchinson, author of "Which Comes First: Cardio or Weights."
7) Your weight is the end all, be all.
Newbies hit the gym, and then weigh themselves every day on the scale.
Week-after-week, they see no downward trend on the scale and get impatient.
People starting saying, "I haven't lost any weight. This is pointless, I'm not accomplishing anything," said Hutchinson.
After a few months of increased exercise, they are healthier because they've reduced risk factors such as blood sugar levels. Even though a person may not be losing weight, his health has improved in ways that might not be measured. 
"They're stuck in this paradigm that weight is the ultimate barometer for fitness. They don't realize the progress they've made and give up."
6) Low-intensity exercise burns more fat.
In general, low intensity exercise has its place -- it's less stressful on joints.
The myth is that if you exercise too intensely, you end up burning carbohydrates instead of fat.
It's the most dangerous type of myth because there's a kernel of truth in it, Hutchinson said.
The more intensely you exercise, the higher proportion of carbs you burn. You may burn less fat, but the total amount of calories burned is higher and that is the bigger picture.
When your body has burned up all the carbs, it starts burning fat.
"You can ignore zones and pay attention to how many calories you burn, which ultimately determines how much body fat you're going to lose," Fitzgerald said.
5) Chug a protein shake after workout.
"It's eating another meal," said Macdonald, a personal trainer who helped TV host Chelsea Handler get in shape.
Protein shakes, powders and bars are good for emergencies, but "they're the lowest quality food."
"You're better off eating real food," he said.
The products are more processed. The best way to get protein is through foods such as a turkey sandwich, Greek yogurt with nuts and fruit.
Martin Gibala, chairman of the department of kinesiology at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario, agrees. "Protein sources in real food are Number 1. Cheaper and real food may provide other benefits, vitamins and minerals. And some of the components in food may act synergistically in ways we don't understand."
"When we isolate the compound we think works, it's not as good as the real foods."
4) You can spot reduce for tight abs or toned arms.
You may have crunched in vain.
You won't see muscle definition or a nice six-pack despite how many crunches you do, because of the layer of fat resting on top of your muscles.
"Don't focus on a body part. Try to get them all," said Burron, a spokeswoman for the American Council on Exercise. "You might have beautiful triceps -- it may not be flopping all over the place. Until the fat is gone, most people wouldn't know it's there."
3) As long as I go to the gym 30-45 minutes, that gives me a pass to do what I want for rest of the day.
The gym doesn't negate a bad diet.
Also, emerging research suggests that if you're sedentary most of the day, it may not matter how hard or often you exercise.
People who spend more time sitting during their leisure time have an increased risk of death, regardless of daily exercise.
In a study of more than 123,000 healthy people, the American Cancer Society found that women who spent more than six hours a day sitting were 40 percent more likely to die sooner than women who sat less. Men who sat more had 20 percent increased risk of death.
2) No pain, no gain.
"The ongoing perception is that people need to feel pain through the entirety of their workout or they're not getting the benefit -- that one's very frustrating to me," said Burron, a personal trainer. "You shouldn't be exercising at a level of pain ever."
Feeling discomfort during a workout is OK.
"If it's so intense you're thinking of passing out, you can't continue this session for longer, then it's too difficult and you're at increased risk for injuries or burnout," Burron said.
"You want to exercise smarter, not harder," she added. "That's the premise. You don't have to kill yourself. You just have to be smart about it."
1) Stretching will help prevent injuries.
A growing number of studies challenge the entrenched assumption that stretching helps prevent injuries.
"The way we were taught to stretch, to try to touch your toes -- there's little evidence it prevents injuries," Hutchinson said.
A review published in 2007 of 10 randomized studies about stretching after or before physical activity found that "muscle stretching does not reduce delayed-onset muscle soreness in young healthy adults."
Static stretching is when you stay in place, bend over to touch your toes, or try to pull your ankles towards your hips.
A study presented this year at the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons found that such static stretching before a run neither prevents nor causes injury.
Then a study published this month in Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise found that static stretches that last longer than a minute could be detrimental to performance.
Athletes often swing their arms and warm up before a game. That type of dynamic stretching such as high knee jogs, walking lunges can help move your muscles through different ranges of motions.
This type of dynamic stretching is different from clutching your limbs, because it focuses on movement.
A study published in the Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research found professional soccer players who practiced dynamic stretching had higher range of motion than when they practiced only static stretches.
While toe-touches and extra flexibility might be required in gymnastics or figure skating, it's irrelevant for more everyday activities like basketball or weightlifting.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Why Makeup Makes You... Happier?

The University of Basque Country (UPV/EHU) did a study on why people buy and use cosmetics- and found that it is usually for emotional reasons.

Vanessa Apaolaza, who was a researcher and the lead author of the study, says, "Our emotions often dictate our decisions. In our buying behaviors, we make emotional decisions and justify them rationally. These emotions are in part learned and in part instinctive."

The study found that when women used products- whether they actually worked or not- it greatly improved their "sensation of well-being gained from... reducing feelings of worry and guilt."

One factor in why the women from the study found their self-esteem and confidence boosted was "through the perception of 'caring for oneself,'" and products marketed towards that idea helped strengthen those feelings after using them.

Another idea as to why such positive feelings resulted is the need to feel sexually attractive. From an evolutionary standpoint, femininity is the most desirable feature to the opposite sex in choosing a mate- so enhancing any feminine features, including the contrast of the face (see Why Makeup Makes You Prettier), and therefore the use of cosmetics (and push-up bras!) are hugely beneficial.

So while you don't have to spend a lot of money on high-end products to make you a more beautiful looking person, you should invest some time every day in making yourself feel pretty. Even if that means taking an extra five minutes for throwing on some mascara or lipgloss before you go out the door, or slathering on some yummy-smelling lotion before bedtime. You'll look great, and even better- you'll feel great!

(study info source:

"Get Gorgeous" Herb Tea For Clear Skin

Tea is known for its antioxidant powers and calming effects. In ancient China, it was used for its medicinal effects, and over centuries afterwards its popularity increased and became a luxury all across the world. Different teas do different things, but can one actually make your skin look better?

The Republic of Tea thinks so. Their "Be Well Red Teas" have many different specialty teas including "Get Gorgeous". Here's what it says on the can:

"Let's get one thing clear. True beauty comes from within. But when it comes to clear skin, some of us can use a little help. So here's good news: this organic, rooibos-based, naturally caffeine-free tea blend is brimming with antioxidants- your skin's best friend. Studies show antioxidants are champions at fighting free-radicals- those pesky cells responsible for aging. Rooibos, a natural complexion calmer, is lovely on its own. When joined by soothing chamomile, the bright flavor of orange peel and a rainbow of other tasty, beneficial herbs, it's a veritable superstar. Who could ask for more in a tea? Simply brew, sip, and "get gorgeous".

 Pick some up at Republic of Tea ($10.50 for 36 tea bags).

Friday, August 5, 2011

6 Reasons "Friends With Benefits" Never Works

by Caitlin Brody via Glamour

Even though the movie, which hits theaters tonight, garnered major cuteness points in my book (Justin Timberlake and Mila Kunis = HOT. And the many JT bum shots didn’t all), I have trouble getting behind the whole friends-with-benefits thing. It’s just never worked for me. Here’s why:

1. I’ve found that it’s nearly impossible not to get attached.After all, a friend with benefits should be a great guy (except maybe when it comes to commitment), which is why we’re friends in the first place. But it’s easy for me to get carried away with thoughts of dates and vacations and ohmigod Kate Middleton married a prince, why can’t I? I try to cut myself some slack though, because even Samantha Jones got attached every once in a while.
2. One word: Jealousy. “Friends” means minimal claim on a guy, so it’s possible that other chicks might come around. And I’m supposed to be OK with it, which I thought would be fine. Key word: thought.
3. The friendship may never be the same again. (That sentence could come with its own dramatic background music.) But it’s true: Sex complicates everything!
4. It’s not just the relationship between the two of you that changes, but the whole dynamic as a group of friends can change, as well. C’mon, it’s weird for everyone if you’re all PDA, but isn’t it just as weird if you’re not?
5. At some point, one of you will get awkward. This one, unfortunately, I’m way too familiar with.
6. No one is immune. Not even seemingly invincible Mila could avoid numbers one through five--and that’s reason enough for me. 

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Love It Or Hate It: Guy's Weigh In On Summer's Hottest Fashion Trends For Women

by Elizabeth Mitchell via TheFashionSpot
June 14, 2011

By now, you’ve probably read countless spring/summer trend reports and could readily recite this season's most talked about fashion and beauty crazes for women off the top of your head (if someone were to actually ask). But have you ever wondered what guys really think about all this stuff? If the new man in your life seriously likes making out with a mouth full of loud lipstick? Or if that hottie you met at the bar last night even noticed your new shoes (or was far too caught up in how hot they made your legs look to care)?

Well, we took it upon ourselves to find out. We asked five guys what they thought about five of this season’s hottest new trends, and what we discovered just might surprise you! But first, let’s meet the guys:
  • Drew: a 25-year-old accountant from North Carolina and a self-proclaimed sports fanatic.
  • Kenny: a 27-year-old nightlife enthusiast and Founder/CEO of newly launched deals website, Night Tap.
  • Jay: a 29-year-old actor who's learned that honesty isn’t always the best policy, especially when it comes to critiquing a woman's looks.
  • Paul: a 31-year-old bail agent who openly admits to his cluelessness when it comes to fashion.
  • Rafael: a 32-year-old fashion designer and stylish store manager at Just Cavalli.

Now, let’s see what they had to say!

1. Nautical-Inspired Fashion – love it or hate it?

Nautical look from MadewellDrew – I don’t mind the nautical look, but pattern isn’t as important to me as the cut of the clothing. I do like to see more legs during the summer, so the white shorts are definitely a plus!!!
Kenny – Eh…makes me think of yuppies, but I’m not mad at white and blue.
Rafael – Whatever about it, but unless you are really thin the nautical look just makes you look like a boat.  
The Overall Verdict? Most guys are pretty indifferent on this one. Show them a variety of nautical looks, and they’ll probably tell you something different each time.
image: Madewell


2. Flared Jeans – what’s the first thing that comes to mind?

Jay – Bozo the clown in the 70s (clown pants). I’m definitely not a fan – they’re too wide, what do you need all that material for?They also kind of hide a girl's figure, mainly the legs. I need to know if you have cankles! And this is a great way to hide them.
Paul – Bell bottoms are kinda not cool...
The Overall Verdict? If you want to grab a guy’s attention, flares aren’t going to cut it. Men are visual creatures and want to see what the shape of your legs actually look like. Their all-time favorite style on a woman? Skinny jeans!Drew  I thought JNCOs went out of style in the late 90s. I like seeing women in a more fitted look that shows off their figure, like skinny jeans.
image: InStyle

3. Bright Lips – love it or hate it, and what do guys really think about lipstick?

fuchsia lipsKenny – Love it. It’s hot when girls accentuate their lips. At the end of the night, I’m going to want to kiss them more. It’s a good look for party girls.
Jay – Ahhh, well it looks good on pale blondes. Then it’s hot. But if it rubs off on me, I hate it. It tastes kinda weird too!
Rafael – Used in the right way it can work…and with the right tones for your skin complexion. But it’s more for photo shoots and younger girls. Natural tones probably look best.
The Overall Verdict? Some guys dig this look, others don’t. It really just depends on the girl, and whether or not you’re going to get it all over them when you’re making out later. Lip gloss is always a good alternative.
image: Jil Sander S/S 2011 IMAXtree

4. The Long Bob (or “Lob”) – what’s the first thing that comes to mind? 

Olivia Palermo long bobDrew – I’m usually a fan of longer hair, but in this case it looks good. I’m leaning towards liking it. While a pretty face seems to be essential for a bob, a “lob” is a bit more forgiving.
Rafael – Friends (the sitcom). Not sexy and very boring, girl-next-door.
Kenny – It’s very Suzy Homemaker-ish. Make a decision ladies. Go long or go short. You can’t do both. Long and free flowing hair like you just left the beach looks best.
The Overall Verdict? Better than the bob, but still not hotter than long locks.
image: Olivia Palermo,

5. Flatforms – love ‘em or hate ‘em, and why?

Prada flatformPaul – Hate 'em. The platform looks funny. Heels are sexiest.
Drew – Not sure how I feel about them. I’m a huge fan of nice legs, which is one reason I love heels, but this look is so different from something I’ve ever seen before…
Jay – Hate 'em. They look like moon boots! A regular sexy high heel goes a long way.
The Overall Verdict? Forget about flatforms – they aren’t going to win you style points with the boys anytime soon. And, as we suspected, dudes want to see our pretty little legs in a sexy pair of high heels (not “moon boots” as Jay called them).

image: Prada flatform, IMAXtree

Sunday, July 31, 2011

How To: Look Prettier in Pictures

Article from Allure

"Chin up" may be a good idea when it comes to facing a bad mood, but it's not the best plan when you're posing for a photograph. A new study published in the journal Evolutionary Psychology shows that the angle at which you hold your head may affect how you're perceived by the opposite sex. “For women, a slight downward tilt of the head simulates the view from above and is most feminine and most attractive,” Dr. Darren Burke told the MSNBC blog The Body Odd. For men, a slight backward tilt of the head is judged as most masculine, which can make the man more attractive.
Burke, senior psychology lecturer at the University of Newcastle in Ourimbah, New South Wales, Australia, and his co-author (and wife) Dr. Danielle Sulikowski looked at how the height difference between men and women would influence whether their features were seen as masculine or feminine. They were testing a theory that evolution would have selected features in women that were most feminine when viewed from slightly above — the view men typically have of them.
Next time you post for a picture, tilt your face down slightly and then look up at the camera. Is that your most flattering angle?

Friday, July 29, 2011

Tour Carrie & Big's Apartment from Sex & the City 2

I've already written about Carrie's place in the first SATC movie (link at bottom), but can we just talk about how fantastic her place is in the second one? I'm always inspired.. I hope they come out with more movies just to see the homes. (And clothes). I'd watch!

Here's a view of the apartment from the foyer. The wallpaper is Oiseau in Chocolate by Katie Ridder  available through Holland & Sherry in New York. Let's keep walking!

This little center area is just a walkway filled with bookcases and a beautiful bubble chandelier from
Lindsey Adelman. Hers is hand blown glass laced with 14-kt gold foil and gold murrine. See how to make your own version here!

Here's a view of their living room. How cool is that center coffee table? It's from Poltrona Frou. The two vintage armchairs are from Bergdorf Goodman. The sofa that took Carrie "a year and a half" to find is from Montauk Sofa.

Here's an alternate view of the room- and a better shot of the fantastic coffee table. The books you can see there include Walton Ford; Lewis Carroll; Tracey Chevelier; Sol Levitt, 100 ViewsThe Name of the Rose by Umberto Eco; The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger; Poe & Fanny by John May; Voices of Time: A Life in Stories by Eduardo Galeano; All Yesterday's Parties: The Velvet Underground in Print 1966-71; and  Lady Chatterley's Lover by D.H. Lawrence. 

One more alternative view. Here you can see better the floral window treatments. The pillow you see on the chair is the Paul Smith Birdie Blossom. The blue ottoman was from a custom-made for the movie Anne Kyyro Quinn piece.

Closer look at the windows and corner "nook" area, with Art Deco club chairs. Notice there are flowers on EVERY table!

And of course the kitchen, where Carrie spends no time cooking! Very modern and chic.

Here is a closer look at the walls over the counter in the kitchen. These are custom-made silver tiles from Heath Ceramics in Sausalito, California. "One of the few mid-century American potteries still in existence,"  says the set designer.

Take a step back from the kitchen and you have the formal dining room. The fabric on the chairs is "Belgravia" from Lee Jofa. And the table is a French 1940s mahogany piece from Alan Moss Studios in Manhattan. The chandelier is fabulous, it's from Property and is made up of oxidized metal discs.  I think that's my favorite piece in this room. The lighted bookshelves in the background are fun too.

Moving on to the bedroom. Still more floor-to-ceiling curtains and beautiful rugs. All rugs in Carrie and Big's apartment come from The Rug Company

A shot of their bed- with a cool modern headboard in Velvet Gate Tuxedo from Kravet and of course, lots of pillows with bedding from Anichini.

The other side of the bed- where there's a fold out desk that becomes the TV's stand. This is Thomas O'Brien's "Hallings Secretary".  The chair is also from Alan Moss, and the wall paper is Rococo Strip by Cole & Son.

Of course, the best part of all is going to be Carrie's closet. Much like the duo-toned cabinets in the kitchen, the woodwork here sets a his-and-her theme, with Carrie's on the right and Big's on the left.

Carrie in her closet, getting ready. Let's take a look at that shoe set up..

Be-a-u-tiful. The shoes in here include styles from Brian Atwood, Charlotte Olympia, Patricia Field (the SATC costume designer), Giuseppe Zanotti, Christian Louboutin, and of course Carrie's favorite- Manolo Blahnik.

Alternate view of the closet and a peak at some of Carrie's purses.

Zoom in to the back side of the closet and you get a glimpse of the bathroom..

With more flowers, makeup brushes and perfumes.

Their apartment is to DIE for. But I wouldn't expect anything less from Ms. Bradshaw :) Check out the post I did on Carrie's apartment makeover from the first movie here.