Break Up with Bad Makeup Habits

All women have their standard makeup routines; and sometimes we take some short-cuts that can do more harm than good. Here are some makeup habits to ditch before it gets too late: 

You don’t throw away old makeup
Be honest… do you have makeup in your drawer from 10 years ago? Lipsticks that you have barely worn, but you swear you will wear “one day”? How about old eye shadows, blushes and foundation? If the answer is yes (like most of us will say!) then it is time to throw them out. Makeup has an expiration date; a general rule of thumb is mascaras 3-6 months and all other makeup approximately 2 years. The problem with old makeup is it can contain bacteria than can damage the skin or the formulas can break down. So if you haven’t worn it in the last 6 months, it is time to part ways.

You don’t wash your brushes
This is probably the worst make up habit. Not only can dirty brushes harbor bacteria that can cause acne and other skin irritations, but your makeup will not apply as well. Also, if you have had any sort of skin infection, it is important to throw away the makeup brushes and start anew. One option is to use disposable makeup sponges or easy-to-use makeup brush cleansing wipes; there really is no excuse to using a clean applicator every time. This is most important with eye infections; throw out your mascara so you don’t re-infect your eyes.

You apply makeup to dry skin
Applying makeup is like painting a fence; before you paint a fence you clean it, sand it and prime it so the paint can be applied to a smooth surface. The same concept goes with makeup; if it is applied to dry, flaky, un-primed skin; it is going to look uneven or rough. So before you apply your makeup, try not to skip the moisturize and prime step; you will be amazed at how much better your makeup looks (and lasts!).

You are in a makeup rut
If we go back to the bad habit of keeping old makeup, it might lead us to wearing the same makeup colors and trends that we did 20 years ago! If you have not changed your colors or even types of makeup in over 5 years it might be time to make the change.  Makeup technology has changed so much that the new formulas can truly help our skin look youthful and beautiful, especially foundations and concealers. New lipstick formulas hydrate our lips better than ever and eye shadow pigments are so vibrant and last all day.  So it’s time to break up with your old makeup and try something new!

 

4 Ancient Beauty Practices You Should Try—They Really Work

If all the legends hold true, Cleopatra must have ruled ancient Egypt from her bathtub. Various reports say that she enhanced her renowned beauty by bathing in milk and rose petals, red wine, or a mix of olive oil, milk and honey. Surprisingly, modern science suggests that she was onto something. Here are 4 age-old beauty rituals that are still worth performing.

Following a daily water ritual. The ancient Romans elevated their daily baths to a sophisticated regimen. The communal public baths of Rome were a combination of gym, spa and social club where people spent time socializing as they moved through a series of cold, warm, hot and cool areas often followed by a massage. The lesson for us today? Relax and de-stress during your cleansing routines. And even if we can no longer easily combine bathing and socializing, it’s important to spend regular time enjoying friends’ company—it’s good for your mental and physical health.
 
Exfoliating after a bath or massage. You may not want to use a dull metal blade to scrape your body as the ancient Romans did, but a vigorous rub-down with a textured cloth once a week keeps skin looking healthier, while stimulating circulation and encouraging fresh cell growth. The Japanese, who still follow the ancient communal-bathing tradition at hot-spring spas called onsen, use a special long, narrow nylon-polyester bath cloth for this purpose before entering the tubs to soak and relax.
 
Applying oils and unguents. Beauty aficionados haven’t used the unlovely word “unguent” for the last 500 years or so, but that doesn’t mean that fragrant oils and liquid ointments (aka unguents) aren’t still as effective as they were in Greek and Roman times for soothing and perfuming the skin and smoothing and nourishing the hair. In addition to mixing olive oil in her milk baths, Cleopatra also reputedly used almond oil—a better choice, since it is lighter and more easily absorbed. You might want to consider trying a modern favorite like argan oil.
 
Using bee products. The ancient Greeks were the first to document honey’s medicinal use to protect and heal wounds. As a beauty treatment, honey has been used for eons to moisturize and strengthen skin and hair in the bath or as a mask. Royal jelly, the food that honeybees reserve for their queen, has historically been associated with longevity and vitality. This nutrient-dense substance, which contains a complex mix of amino acids, lipids, minerals and vitamins, is now found in JAFRA Royal Jelly products. Royal jelly’s royalactin is the protein that seems to have the most positive effects on skin health.

Take our Beauty Rituals Quiz here to learn more ancient secrets!
 
 

6 Sexy Valentine’s Day Gifts You’ll Love (That Aren’t Chocolate!)

Can a heart-shaped box of chocolates make you more beautiful? Fat chance. Here are some much better Valentine’s Day gift ideas to share with your man (or buy for yourself) that offer a sexy beauty bonus.
 
Fragrance. Flowers are men’s number one choice for a Valentine’s Day gift for their ladies, yet gifts of fragrance are much less common. Maybe he’s afraid you won’t like his pick or he’s overwhelmed by the complexity of perfume shopping. The easy solution? Go unisex. One fragrance for both of you is a hot trend and he can’t go wrong choosing a light, fresh eau de toilette like JAFRA’s citrusy Yitsu or sweet-spicy Urban Energy.
 
Sparkly earrings. You may never have thought about it, but men associate large or showy earrings with sexy “bad girls,” which is definitely the vibe you want going on Valentine’s Day. A big, sparkly diamond hoop or dangly cascade may not be your choice for every day wear, but if your man picks out a pair for you, wear them and enjoy knowing he finds you pretty and sexy.
 
A bottle of red wine. If your guy presented you with an anti-aging potion for Valentine’s Day, you probably wouldn’t be very pleased. But that’s exactly what red wine is. Red wine contains large amounts of antioxidants known as polyphenols that fight cellular aging. It’s also a well-known de-stressor. And it’s something you can enjoy together, so pop the cork and enjoy a glass knowing you’re doing something that will keep you and your man youthful.
 
A massage gift basket. He can improvise this one by putting together a collection of related gifts—with the promise of a massage—that include items like body oils and bath gels, a fluffy robe and pretty new towels. If he’s not confident in his massage skills, he can always stick to just a head massage and gift you some JAFRA Spa Scalp Massage and Hair Treatment. Afterward, shower off together!
 
The perfect scarf. Sure, lingerie may seem sexier, but it’s a lot tougher for your man to get right and it isn’t nearly as visible (hopefully) as a beautiful silk or gossamer scarf. If he wants to be really romantic, he should choose an infinity style loop scarf to demonstrate his endless love. A hue that complements your skin color makes you more beautiful and shows how considerate he is. What’s sexier than that?
 
Satin sheets. The smooth, silky texture of satin sheets and pillowcases is just plain sexy, but they also deliver a beauty bonus. Because satin is less textured than cotton, it’s gentler and nonabrasive to your skin, eyelashes and hair. If you’re a side sleeper, satin sheets may help prevent facial wrinkles. And, let’s be honest, for beautiful skin, there’s nothing like the post-sexy-time glow!
 

Facets of Fragrance

Use the olfactory pyramid to uncover your signature scent

Do you ever wonder why a perfume smells perfect after a quick spritz in Sephora or Saks, but once you get home, you’re never inclined to wear it again? It’s not because your sense of smell changes – it’s because the scent does. This is what’s known as the olfactive pyramid and it dictates which aromas emerge from a fragrance and in what order.
 
The big three
 
Much like humans have heart, head and gut to go on in life, there are three levels to every fragrance – top, body and base – which combine to inform how it unfolds. Top notes (also known as head notes in some circles) are first to present; they’re the initial scents that interest us in a fragrance. Often light and fresh (and usually from the citrus or herbaceous families), top notes dissipate about 30 minutes after spraying. They’re also what you’ll smell if you pick up yesterday’s clothing. That’s because they don’t change unless exposed to body heat. However, once that happens, top notes give way to the next level of scent…
 
The body/heart notes. This middle section of the olfactory pyramid is less vibrant, but deeper and lasts another four to six hours after the top notes fade. Floral, fruity, spice-based (or some combination) compared to their predecessor’s zestiness, these are the aromas you’ll notice in the middle of the day. They’re also the notes you want to wait to experience before deciding on a fragrance – since they’re the ones that dictate what a fragrance smells like most of the time you’re wearing it.
 
And finally, after the heart/body notes fade, the remaining scent that’s left on your skin (often until the next day – or your next shower), are the base notes. Less intense or concentrated, but with more staying power, these aromas are muskier, sometimes leather, wood or balsam-based and are said to form the basis for long-term attachment to a scent. In other words, if you wake up smelling like you did the night before (or like your lover smelled) and like it, those are the base notes talking… and whispering for you to come back and smell/experience them again.

 
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