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beauty (125 posts)
A: The stylists I spoke to all agree: The best approach is to get regular "mini" trims every six weeks. (Were you, like me, skeptical about this suggestion, thinking it might be motivated by greed? Stylist Cristophe of Beverly Hills says you shouldn't be charged for these kinds of trims.) You should have a goal: Are you aiming for an all-one-length bob? A shaggy, piecey look? Once you've settled on the goal, your stylist can give you shaping trims with that in mind. In general, keeping the back short while you grow out the layers at the crown can ease you into a longer style; don't cut the top or the sides until they're as long as the back, says stylist Mario Russo, at Salon Mario Russo in Boston.
Keep in mind: It will take about nine months to grow your hair to the length that allows you to cut it into a completely new style.
With 2012 on the horizon, we found two new nail ideas to freshen up your fingertips in the new year:
Gaga-ify Your Nails: The fifth floor of Barneys department store in New York City has recently been transformed into Lady Gaga's Workshop—where you'll find everything from magnetic paper dolls of the lady herself to claw-shaped stockings fit for little monsters. Our favorite beauty find are these Kiss press-on nails—like the chain and studded set at left—designed by Gaga's personal nail artist, Naomi Yasuda. If you're daring enough to wear these press-ons for longer than a night, swap the sticker-style tabs for nail glue (included in the kit) and keep them on for up to a week. Plus, 25 percent of sales from all items in Gaga's Workshop will be donated to the Born This Way Foundation founded by Lady Gaga and her mother.
Paint and Peel Polish: Want to change your polish as often as you change your clothes? Try Sula's polish duos that peel off without breaking out the remover. Two coats of color has a shrink-wrap effect on nails and the clear top coat leaves an extra-shiny finish. Throw one of these pens in your purse or keep it in your top drawer to easily touch-up chips.
Would you try these? Have any new beauty finds you love?
Paint each nail a different color (and still look like an adult)
Lady Gaga's ferocious fashion
When the season of giving rolls around I always feel like the runner that missed the gun at the beginning of the shopping marathon. In other words, I'm still standing empty handed at the starting line while everyone else took off sometime around Thanksgiving. In an effort to catch up, I came across these three festive and affordable beauty gifts that are guaranteed to put a smile on any woman's face (and save you from looking like a slacker).
Mini Shopping Bag Makeup Palette: No time to wrap? Hang this tote-shaped compact (at left) filled with nine eyeshadows, four lip glosses and a flattering shade of pinky-peach blush on any makeup junkie's Christmas tree. $15, Sephora.com
Nutcracker Soaps: Skip the fruitcake and bring this boxed set of five soaps to your holiday hostess.They may look like toys, but the sophisticated burnt orange, clove, and balsam fir scent is all grown up. $22, GiannaRose.com
Birchbox Subscription: Instead of a generic gift card, give the beauty lover in your life something original (and a whole lot more glamorous). Each month your mom/aunt/niece will receive a box brimming with high-end tools, makeup, hair, and skincare samples. She'll find her new beauty favorites without splurging on the full-sized product and cluttering up her cabinets with jars of half-used wrinkle cream. $30 for 3 months, Birchbox.com
Have any other last-minute gift ideas?
18 gifts to get at the drugstore
9 beauty stocking stuffers under a buck
Lipstick has had a cult following since...well...forever, but the same fundamental problems have existed since the very beginning. The bullet quickly transforms from a sharp, perfect slant to a dull, rounded nub in just a few uses—making application less precise. Gloss is always an option, but getting the last quarter out at the bottom of the tube with the wand is usually impossible. Exude's new line, however, is checking off those cosmetic quandaries one-by-one. The plastic applicator retains it's shape no matter how many times you reapply. Plus, you can release as much or as little of the moisturizing, mint-scented color as you want by clicking the bottom of the tube clockwise. If you've over-clicked, turning the base in the opposite direction sucks the product back inside so that you never waste a drop. For a more satiny look, opt for one of the nine crème shades. If you love shine, try the five gloss shades that range from red to clear.
6 ways to hide the signs of holiday stress
A lipstick that feels like a gloss
5 best new hairstyling products—and their humble origins
Lazy woman's guide to fabulous hair
5 products beauty editors wear down to a nub
This month's best beauty buys
LaVív is being called a custom-made, more natural approach to line filling (you're simply using your own skin cells, after all). But only one of a half-dozen dermatologists we spoke with is planning to offer it. Because LaVív is more invasive, time consuming, and expensive than the fillers already available—and hasn't been shown to last longer—doctors aren't that impressed.
Bottom Line: This concept could inspire a new generation of wrinkle fillers in the next several years, but for now it's a work in progress.
How do women really feel about the way they look?
How to fight back against wrinkles
Beauty after 40: 5 mature beauty gurus tell all
Ha! Boy, am I kidding. Unless pasty flesh, chronically unbrushed hair, and 2-kids-no-sleep-eye-bags have suddenly come into fashion, being just too beautiful is a problem I can only imagine. And let's be honest, it's a problem I'd be willing to deal with.
So why this topic for a photo essay, and why is it so fascinating? For one thing, hello, these images are just fun to look at. And as the site explains, one of reasons why they share these stories in the first place is "to help people understand what it’s like to be someone else. Day-to-day, the reality, not the fantasy. When you’re good-looking, any stranger can tell that you’ve been fortunate. What rarely comes up — for reasons of intimidation, jealousy, or just the fact that it’s not easy for people to talk about being beautiful — are the complications of that good fortune."
No surprise that many of the beautiful people interviewed admit that their looks have opened doors for them. But what I found most affecting were the many young women who said that people assumed they were stupid or unfriendly because of their looks. I mean, I assumed they were stupid and unfriendly even as their quotes were urging me not to. And here's the line that really got me: "So much of my personal value has been placed on what I look like. It’s sad. Looks don’t last. So as I age, will I lose my value?”
It would be strange, actually, now that I think of it, to be a young person just finding her way in the world, and to not have to figure out her place the way the rest of us do. Not only is she beautiful but she's a model, so her beauty is her profession, and not one likely to thrive as she ages. If she's not careful, she may well find herself at 50 or so with few marketable skills, her main "talent," in the eyes of many, faded away. Put that way, it does seem a bit dismal. Thank goodness for my baby weight and mismanaged eyebrows! Perhaps they played a more important part than I thought in helping me to find my way in the world.
Oprah and Cybill Sheperd talk honestly about beauty and aging.
How different cultures define beauty.
Craving Thin Mints? This new lip balm collection from Lip Smackers might satisfy your sweet tooth—minus the calories. With five flavors scented like your favorite Girl Scout cookies—including buttery Trefoils and rich chocolate and peanut butter Tagalongs—keeping lips moisturized has never been so delectable. And at $1.75 each, you can afford to sample every kind.
A lipstick that feels like a gloss
This month's best beauty buys
Do you think hairdressers should be trained on skin cancer as well as styling?
Health screenings: What to get from ages 19 to 91
The fake bake high