Find the right foundation

Illustration: Silja Goetz

Future Flash: A Mobile Makeup Matcher
Picture this: You're standing before a drugstore wall of foundations wondering, "Buff Beige or Bare Buff?" and you turn to your cell phone for the answer. Simply snap a shot of yourself with its camera, send it to a virtual beauty adviser, and get back a text message (within seconds) that tells you the most flattering shade for your skin. Hewlett-Packard has already developed the technology, called Color Match. It would take a kind of geek we definitely are not to understand exactly how it works, but the system color-corrects each picture for camera and lighting discrepancies and then compares the shot to a database of skin tones to recommend the best match. HP is working to find makeup brands that can help bring the prototype to life. 

Jenny Bailly
Boots No. 7 Restore and Renew Beauty Serum

Photo: Marko Metzinger/Studio D

Word of Mouth: The Serum Everyone's Talking About
Boots No. 7 Restore & Renew Beauty Serum is the Harry Potter of skincare. When this British drugstore product arrived in the United States last year, beauty junkies lined up for a piece of the magic. They'd heard that it was already selling out in the UK, after research about the serum's line-smoothing powers was widely publicized. The evidence (a study followed nine people over 12 days) wasn't enough to convince us. But recently, our very own (generally levelheaded) friends started acting gaga about the stuff. One of the most discerning (and ambitious, and flush) of the bunch confided that she wasn't seeing her dermatologist for Botox quite as often because she thought the $22 face serum was so effective. So she was thrilled to hear about the newly released sequels: Protect & Perfect Body Serum ($25) and Protect & Perfect Eye Cream ($20). We've been using both for a couple of weeks; they're quickly absorbed, and they smell great. But if there's magic, it hasn't happened yet.

Jenny Bailly
Woman in bed

Photo: © 2008 Jupiterimages Corporation

Future Flash: Get Gorgeous in Bed
In a few years, you may be looking for more than thread count when you're shopping ofr a new pillowcase or duvet cover. "Sheets will be infused with various skin-softening moisturizers, and even caffeine to minimize cellulite," says Jeanine Recckio, a trend forecaster and beauty "futuroligst." With every toss and turn, the ingredients will penetrate your skin, making your mornings a little smoother."
Yes to Carrots C Me Smile Lip Butters

Photo: Marko Metzinger/Studio D

Fine Print Alert!
If you think you might have an unhealthy dependency on your lip balm, check the ingredient list. "Lip balms that contain phenol, an antibacterial agent, strip the top layer of skin off your lips," says dermatologist Amy Wechsler, MD, author of The Mind-Beauty Connection: 9 Days to Reverse Stress Aging and Reveal More Youthful, Beautiful Skin. "That's why you get addicted to these balms; they remove your natural protection, so you're constantly reapplying to try to restore a supple feeling to your lips." Break the cycle by reaching for a phenol-free balm that contains a rich moisturizer such as beeswax, shea butter, or jojoba oil. Rehab lips with shea butter and beeswax in Yes to Carrots C Me Smile Lip Butters, $4 each. 

Jenny Bailly
Old fashioned hair dryer

Photo: © 2008 Jupiterimages Corporation

Future Flash: Shampoo Robots
Whirpool bath? Check. Heated tiles? Check. Shampoo robot? Yep, that's right. Tricked-out bathrooms may soon include mechanized hair-washers. "Some salons already have them," says trend forecaster and beauty "futurologist" Jeanine Recckio. "You lean your head back into a basin equipped with nozzles that wash your hair and massage your scalp. There's even a spin-dry." (Ouch! It's actually just circulating hot air, though, no spinning.) The current incarnations of the machines, which are made in Japan, are too bulky—and pricey—for home bathrooms, "but in 10 years...who knows?" says Recckio. "Not very long ago you'd probably see a GPS only in a cockpit; now we have then in our cars. 

Jenny Bailly
Olio Lusso luxury oil

Photo: Gisel Florez/Studio D

Word of Mouth: A Luxurious Face Oil
When I complimented a makeup artist friend on her glowing skin not long ago, she credited this face oil—then slipped me the phone number of a fashion stylist named Linda Rodin, who created the stuff in her kitchen. I called Rodin that very day, and she told me that I could find where to buy her Olio Lusso ("luxury oil") on her website, (it's sold at several boutiques around the country). Even her dermatologist, David Colbert, MD, is carrying it in his New York City office and selling it online at (it gently smooths rough, sun-damaged skin, he told me). A blend of 11 essential oils (from apricot seed to sweet almond), Olio Lusso ($130) smells as sensuous as it feels gliding over your skin. Three days into using a few drops on my face and chest at night (I blend what's left into my cuticles), my skin already feels silkier. Rodin is launching an oil for the body (larger size, slightly less concentrated scent) this month. 

Jenny Bailly
Elnett hairspray

Photo: Courtesy L'Oréal

Cult Favorite: L'Oréal Paris Elnett Satin
Whenever we ask hairstylists which hairspray they use, the answer is almost always L'Oréal Paris Elnett Satin ($14). "The aerosol spray produces a mist that's lighter and finer than anything else I've tried," says New York City hairstylist Eva Scrivo. Too bad for us that the propellant creating this exceptional mist wasn't compliant with U.S. environmental standards, which is why Elnett has never been sold here (stylists we know would load up on the stuff whenever they flew to Europe). After many years of research, L'Oréal has developed a new, more eco-friendly version that's now available at Target stores. We sent it to Eva to test out. "It's got a less powdery scent than the original," she said. But otherwise? She couldn't tell the difference. 

Kate Sandoval