So I called my girlfriend up and asked her what’s she was doing….”washing my hair” she said. “What! On a friday night, why you not out on a date? I replied. She says of course the obvious ” Its hard dating in NY”…smh. She wasn’t lying. She proceeds to ask me what products (do) I use cause my hair is always looking so? healthy and thick. A question I have been asked many times before, which has lead me to do this piece on Beauty tips focused on Hair, Nails, Skin and Body.

The first person I thought was beautiful was my grandmother. She was just so flawless to me (inside and out) but on the outside, Her face, her skin, her smile seemed timeless. She never wore makeup, yet glowed everyday. I would love watching her comb her hair and even when she became sick and my mother would comb it, it was a routine I never wanted to miss. Her hair was long, thick, naturally wavy and healthy. I knew then how important personal care would be to me.

It’s all too easy to get comfortable and fall into the routine of how we dress, the products we use, how we do our makeup and the way we style our hair . I’m here to tell you that everything(s) changes . Just like it’s bad to drink spoiled milk it’s also bad to not refresh your look with more and improved styles and products. Don’t get me wrong, I’m no hypocrite. I grew up watching my grandmother use witch hazel on (their) her face and mayonnaise in her hair all of which I still incorporated in my beauty routine to this day, but I have definitely added in more products as I got older and with the changing seasons.

Making the best choices for your hair, nails and skin can go a long way. Here are a few beauty tips to maintaing and or restoring you look.

SKIN CARE

It goes without saying know your skin, “Is it oily, dry, normal?(. )Does it change with every season, weather and or your diet?”.  Everyone has their own beauty so know yours and work on that.  Sunscreen is without question a must for all skin tones. Most cosmetics contain SPF contents, but nonetheless, you should be applying sunscreen every day, every season to keep your skin healthy and looking youthful.

WATER, WATER WATER. Need I say more? and if you say yes, why? even if you live under a rock you still need water down there….. lol

A real good diet is essential to a healthy living and fresh looking skin. Don’t get me wrong, I eat what I crave when I’m craving it, but in moderation. I have a cheat sheet that I use to keep track of myself so I don’t overdo it. Excessive weight has nothing to do with being healthy inside and out, have a exercise plan in place and live by it.

Whether you know your skin type or not, visit a dermatologist, just for complete confirmation on your skin inside and out. After all this is your skin for the rest of your life. Examples of skin tones:

FAIR SKIN: Light or pale complexion

OLIVE SKIN: Slightly beige, yellowish color

TANNED SKIN: Golden brown shade after exposed by the sun

DARK SKIN: Having skin rich in melanin pigments

MAKEUP CARE

Choosing the right makeup to match your skin tone is important. Not all department stores have testers and before you know you have spent” beaucoup” money before finding the right one. In order to know mine, I took a vist to the MAC store and had them do a facial on me.

In case you didn’t know, makeup has expiration dates. Check the bottom or sides to protect your skin.

Women tend to get scared when they hear “bargain and cosmetics” in the same sentence. Please bear in mind that cosmetic companies have sister companies that carry the same makeup as big department stores for cheaper prices to still compete for your money. Drug stores and online websites are good places to buy name brand cosmetics at a discounted price. Do your research on the best one for you based on your price and desired brands. Also please invest into a set of makeup brushes and change them when needed.

Im big on scrubs, body and face. as well as some of my favorite store bought products, I love making my own at home. I get oatmeal, honey, brown sugar, olive oil and mix them up in a bowl. Apply to my face and body, after about 10 minutes I wash it off in the shower. I was not only glowing but my skin was soft, face looked clear and I felt gorgeous.

Every few weeks the cells in your skin regenerate so its important to have a monthly routine of exfoliating and pampering to maintain your look.

I wash my face at least twice a day. When I wake up and before I go to bed. I use non fragrance soap. I don’t need anything synthetic to clean my face and studies have said those have a strong possiblity its carcinogenic. (A cancer causing substance).

As mentioned before, exfoliating is important and please have a great moisturizer. I prefer oil free and find it more efffective when applied to a damp skin. Living in NY, especially winter, moisturizing is a must need.

Ask anyone who knows me “what’s her obsession?”. You will hear LOTION. I have a strong relationship with lotion with no intention of ever breaking up. I keep my skin moist and soft all the time.It will show in the long run with aging.

NAILS CARE

I must have been 16 years old when I got my first real manicure. I was on a pedistool all day after it. You couldn’t ask me to do anything that required using my hands and I think it must have been every 5 minutes I was in the mirror looking and loving my hands. Times have changes since then as I no more do acrylics ( damages my nails too much) but I still get my regular set of mani&pedi with massages. Going to the nail salon on a regular could get costly (based on your job) so I think its imperative to learn a few at home tricks to maintain a healthy good looking set of hands. First and foremost DON’T BITE YOUR NAILS. DON’T CLEAN THEM WITH YOUR TEETH….YUCK!!!

Treat your nails well. Because nail polish remover on a regular basis can stip the nail, sometimes go polish free.

MUST HAVES: Nail clippers in different sizes. Nail files. Buffers. Cuticle pusher. Cuticle oil. Base coats. Top coats. Nail brush. Nail polish and polish remover.

HAIR CARE

It’s a well known fact that your hair is dead. Yes I said dead. The human body, with the exception of your lips, soles of your feet and palm of your hands, is covered with hair. Each strand is collections of dead cells. the only thing alive is the follicle in the scalp. Once the follicle goes, gray hair begins which is why proper products with daily care is important.

Some people wash their hair once a week (coarse and dry hair), others on a daily basis. You have to do what works best for your hair type, but I feel overly lathering is actually taking away from the oil that is needed that your scalp produces. I believe thats where the dry shampoo, leave-in conditioner and hair treatment products come in to keep your hair clean and healthy.

Shampoos and conditioners are a must have in your shopping trips and beauty routine. Shampoos job is to clean your scalp and conditioners help the quality of your hair; that’s why you only apply it to the strands and not the scalp.

I love homemade concoctions, I’ve been using coconut oil for years on my hair and body. You can apply to the ends, put in a bun cover for 30 minutes then shampoo and condition your hair. I know a friend that uses avocado,yogurt and egg whites as a treatment then washes it out. Maybe, you can have a hair party with your friends and create something on your own and see how it helps, just please make sure its products that are not harmful to your hair and scalp.

Try and avoid over excessive heat on your hair, pulling your hair too tight in a ponytail or even sleeping with your hair in a ponytail using an elastic.

It’s important to also have in your stach a great set of combs, brushes, blow dyer, rollers, flat iron/curling iron.

Get plenty of rest cause lack of it can be harmful to the way you look and feel.

I think the best beauty requirement needed for everybody is a SMILE. It does wonders to your personality and look. Never leave home without it.

Smooches

DeAnne