Wednesday, April 27, 2011

1-minute makeover moves from "Seventeen" magazine

For this post I wanted to branch out to do something I have not touched on yet, fitness. I have a subscription to Seventeen magazine and they offered "1-minute makeover moves" to help you get a great body! I decided that since swim suit season was upon us, I would try this workout and share it with you too.

Thanks Seventeen! :D

Warm up
Trainer Sonki Hong tells readers that they should warm up by jogging in place for 2 minutes, stretching your whole body for 5 minutes, and doing jumping jacks for 1 minute.

Jogging in place
Work Out
*The trick for this warm up is that you do each move for 60 seconds as hard as you can and then resting for 30 seconds in between.
*After you do all 5 moves, you should repeat them all two more times.

Move One: Dips
This move tones your arms and shoulders!
A. Sit on chair, hands beside your hips. Slide off the chair and extend your legs straight out.

B. Lower your body by bending arms to a 90 degree angle then push yourself back up to the starting position.

Move Two: Bicycles
This move slims your waist!
A. Lie on your back with your hands behind your head and lift legs and bend them to a 90 degree angle.

B. Extend your right leg out and bring left knee into your chest and twist reaching elbow towards your knee.

C. Repeat this motion on the other side. Keep alternating B and C in a fast fluid motion.

Move Three: Duck Walks
This move tones your butt and thighs!
A. Squat keeping your back straight and place hands behind your head.

B. Stay squated and take a big step forward with your right leg.

C. Take another step forward with your left leg. Keep "duck walking" for the full 60 seconds.

Move Four: Swimmers
This move tones your back, abs, and butt!
A. Get down on your hands and knees with your back straight.

B. Lift right arm and left leg at the same time. Keep both parallel to the floor. Return to starting position. 

C. Repeat on the other side.

Move Five: Sidekicks
This move firms your hips, butt and thighs!
A. Stand with feet and hands together.

B. Lift your right leg sideways until you feel your muscles stretching. Keep your leg and upper body straight. Return to starting position.

C. Repeat motion on the other side.

NOTE: Magazine reccomended using a resistance band for this move. Sadly, I did not have one but you can still do the exercise if you do not. Just squeeze your leg when it is in the air. 

I hope that you will try out this workout. It was really easy and fun to do! Hopefully I can stick to this routine and get my body swimsuit ready...and I hope you will too!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Researchers: Beauty Sleep Not a Myth

Of course healthy skin is important for beauty and make up and hair enhance our natural beauty. But what is really most important for beauty? SLEEP! ABC News covered a story about Swedish scientist conducted a study which found an important link between sleep and physical appearance.

The Study:
The study was conducted by John Axelsson and his team at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm. The article explains that "23 healthy adults from ages 18 to 31 were first photographed after eight hours of sleep, wearing no makeup. The same adults were photographed again after sleeping only five hours and being kept awake for a full 31 hours, with the same lighting and camera settings." After this the photos were shown to 65 "untrained observers" who rated them on various topics. Ultimately the study found that "sleep-deprived individuals appear less healthy, more tired, and less attractive than those who have received a full night's worth of sleep."
What to do?
It is apparent that a lack of sleep can have a negative effect on your physical appearance so it is important to get an adequate amount of sleep. The National Sleep Foundation recommends that teens get "9 1/4 hours of sleep each night to function best (for some, 8 1/2 hours is enough). Most teens do not get enough sleep — one study found that only 15% reported sleeping 8 1/2 hours on school nights." As for adults, 7-8 hours is about average. The Foundation does recommend taking short naps during the day to improve short term alertness.

Healthy Sleep Tips
The Natural Sleep Foundation gives 10 tips for healthy sleeping on their site. Many sites and professionals recommend that you have a comfortable place for sleeping. Ultimately, try to plan your schedule around allowing yourself to get as much sleep as possible! Just ask yourself if you are getting your beauty sleep!?

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Don't Die....It's Just Hair Dye!

So since I focused on hair my last post I would continue with this theme. With the season changing, I have heard a lot of my friends talking about changing their hair color. Some of them have come to me for help, unfortunately some of them came after a color disaster. My goal for this post is to keep you from experiencing a hair disaster by talking about color choice, types of dye (or color as we like to refer to it in cosmetology), how to apply your color and how to make it last to its fullest.
Hair Color Swatches

Picking your color
The main thing you need to decide when picking your hair color is if your skin tone is cool or warm. This will determine the color hue you should choose. Cool colors will have a blue or green undertone and warm colors will have red or orange undertones. If you have trouble determining this, look at the colors of your clothing that looks best on you and these colors will help you determine if your skin is cool or warm.

Types of hair color
There are three main types of hair color, temporary, semi-permanent, and permanent. Temporary colors wash out in one or two washes. Semi-permanent last a few months where the chemicals from permanent color will be in your hair forever.

How to apply your hair color
The first thing you should do when applying your hair color is separating your hair into sections so you can apply the product evenly. If you are trying a new color and a new product I would recommended doing a test strand so you know for sure how your hair will respond to the product before you put it all over your head! If you are satisfied with the test, start applying it to each section one at a time. AN IMPORTANT TIP: start applying color in the middle of your hair. Your ends are porous and suck up color faster and the heat from your scalp will cause the color to develop. Also, if you have really thick hair you may want to do the bottom half of your hair, wash it out, then do the top. Wait the full time the directions say then wash out the color.

Protecting your color
You should always use color protecting shampoo and conditioner so chemicals in regular shampoo don't strip your color. It is important to use protective styling products as well because the damaging heat can cause color to fade. Stay away from harsh chemicals like chlorine from pools and watch out for UV rays!

I hope that I have taken some of the fright out of hair coloring! Good luck and have fun with your color!

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

A Trend to Top Those Lucious Locks

Since my last post was on hair and my wonderful friend Erin did such a good job talking to you about accessories, I figured that I would stay on these topics for this post! I thought I would share with you a fashion trend popping back up this season, the Fedora!

Classic felt Fedora
This hat is a great accessory for a couple of reasons. First it is a hat that is suitable for both men and women. Fedora's date back to the beginning of the 20th century. Originally a woman's fashion, it became a part of middle class male attire in the 1920's. The fedora is a accessory that is very classy and is not too over the top for those that are not big on over accessorizing. Secondly, the fedora is useful for protecting your face from the sun. The brim of the hat can come in different sizes and is good to protect you from that spring and summer sun! Straw fedoras are becoming increasingly popular because they are light weight and will not be too hot in the warming weather!  
Straw Fedora
Accessorizing helps out any outfit and any look. The fedora can be dressed up or down for a casual day! I hope that you will try one out and see how you like it!

Thursday, March 31, 2011

The Beauty of Accesories: A Guest Post by Erin Kidd

Hello blog readers, this is not Amanda speaking. Actually, this is Erin Kidd, someone who loves Amanda very much :)

That's me :)
 Anyway, for those of you who do not know, I have my own blog called Becoming a Girly Girl. Basically, I am a once tomboy, no makeup wearer, who is trying to learn the ins and outs of being girly. My blog is documenting my journey to become a true woman...or at least a girlier one.

So, for this blog post, you are stuck with me instead of Amanda. Oh yeah, I know you are excited. ;)

Today, I am here to talk to you about my experience with accessories. For years, my only accessory was a cross necklace that my momma gave me for Christmas. It was simple, elegant, and represented something that I was passionate about. It was the only accessory that I felt like I needed.

You see my cross necklace?
However, I have recently began to experiment with other types of accessories because I am trying to be girly and girly girls accessorize.

  Headbands, bows, necklaces, rings, hats, bracelets, etc....they are all slowly making their way into my life. I am starting to understand how just the right accessory can bring an entire outfit together. I now own some bows for my hair, some long necklaces, and some hats. I have to say that I am proud of myself for broadening my horizons and jumping onto the accessory train.

pretty headband
So I guess the morale of the story is, girly girls accessorize. If you see a cute accessory in a store that you just have to buy, go ahead and splurge...just make sure that you have an outfit that will go with it. I am currently expanding my collection, and will continue to girly myself out with accessories.

What is hair?

Hair, it is our ultimate accessory. We carry it with us everywhere we go so we always want it to look great. But have you ever thought about what hair really is, what it’s made of? What makes our hair different colors and different types like straight or curly? Well, I am here to tell you.

What is hair? 
First off, your hair grows out of follicles on your scalp. Hair starts out as a bulb. Then the follicle grows under the skin and the shaft is the part of the hair that is seen outside the scalp. The only part of the hair that is really alive is what is under the skin. This is where the hair grows. Also under the skin around the hair follicle are the sebaceous glands which produce sebum, an oily substance that coats the hair making it semi waterproof. This is what allows water to run off hair when it is washed. This diagram shows a picture of hair under the skin. 

Hair is primarily made up of a protein called keratin which gives hair its strength. The hair shaft itself is made up of three parts. The first layer is the medulla. The second layer is the cortex. This layer is the main source of the shafts strength and where the hair collects water. The top layer is the cuticle. This is the layer that provides protection thanks to the cells that make it up. This is the layer of the hair that is damaged by things such as rough brushing, heating products such as curling irons, flat irons and blow dryers, as well as chemical damage from hair color. It is important that you use protective styling products to keep you hair as damage free as possible! 

What determines hair type and color?
The secret of hair type and color lie in cortex layer of the hair. The shapes of the cells that make up this layer determine how straight or curly your hair will be. The more round the cell the straighter the hair and the more oval or abnormally shaped the more curly. As for hair color, it is determined by something called melanin. Different types of melanin and the abundance of it determine hair color. Eumelanin causes dark blonde, brunette, or black hair. Pheomelanin makes red hair. Blonde hair is not caused by a specific type of melanin but the lack of melanin. Grey hair begins to show as the melanin in your hair starts to decrease and slowly disappear. 

Now that you know a little more about what exactly your hair is I hope that you will appreciate it more. Hair is more complex than we like to think. It is very important to keep your hair healthy and protected so you will always have you best accessory!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Lip color: The final step of your beaty routine

The last thing every girl needs to complete her make up routine is lip color. Even if you prefer going “nude” it is good to put some type of product on your lips such as a gloss or balm like Chap Stick so they do not look too bare against the rest of your made-up face. The #1 rule of lip color is not to play up your eyes AND your lips. This simply means that if you are putting a lot of emphasis on your eyes then down play your lips. If you are going more natural with your eye make up then play up your lips to get a dramatic effect somewhere on your face.  

STEP 1: Liner
Not all women use lip liner when applying lip color but that is fine. The point of lip liner is to correct any flaws in your lips, make them appear larger or smaller, and to give the color product a base to stick to. Lip liner does make your color last longer so it is good to use. When applying liner you should follow the natural line of your lip. If you want to make them look bigger line right outside your natural line but DO NOT go over board! You will be able to see the natural line of your lip if you make a fake line too far away from it. The same rule goes for making lips appear smaller but make your line slightly inside the natural lip line. After you have made the outside line, color in your lips with the liner.


STEP 2: Lip color
I keep using the phrase “lip color” because traditional lipsticks are not the only products you can use to get color on your lips. You can use colored glosses and balms as well. You should pick the product that feels most comfortable to you. 

When picking a lip color it is important to remember that not all colors will look the same on all people. You have to keep in mind the colors of your skin tone and feel free to try different shades before picking one that is right for you. Also keep in mind you can mix colors to create a perfect shade.

When applying your lip color you should follow the line of your natural lips or the line you created with your liner. You can use a lip brush, your finger, or the tube/wand itself, just do what is easiest for you. After you apply your color, rub your lips together to blend the color. A tip I learned works to keep lipstick off your teeth is to stick your finger in your mouth, close your lips around it and pull it out. I know this sounds funny but it will remove any color that would rub off onto your teeth!

After this step, you are finished with your lip color.  You should now have all the steps and tips necessary to complete a basic make up routine! I hope that you have are excited to try your new routine out and remember, BE CREATIVE!!!