Go for the glow!

Ah November, you are here and creeped up on me way too quickly. I can’t believe I find myself holiday shopping already! I started buying gifts and goodies for my girls. Oh, how I will miss summer dearly but can’t say the beginning of these crisp days and nights excite me. Every year when the weather turns cold, I find myself craving hot baths, hot showers, and of course hot tea. Sure it all sounds fabulous and feels nice, but I’m trying to refrain myself from doing so (besides the tea part!).  Let me tell you why. The hot water may feel amazing when it’s cold outside, and a great way for warming you up from this chilly weather, but it is an absolute NIGHTMARE for drying out your body and scalp. I’ve mentioned before in one of my previous posts that I used to suffer from psoriasis. I have to work extra hard to keep myself hydrated to avoid any dryness that can trigger dry skin and psoriasis. Hot water can suck the hydration right out of our bodies, leaving us with dry skin and dandruff. If you absolutely love taking hot showers like me, then here is a few pointers to keep yourself hydrated this winter!

Exfoliate! Exfoliating helps the skin absorb products better, giving you a smoother appearance. The three most important things  you can do for your skin are clean it, moisturize it, and protect it from the sun. Exfoliation helps to deep cleanse your skin, which will help it retain more moisture and look fresher, younger and healthier. If exfoliating at home is just not enough then I definitely recommend having your skin polished at the spa! One of my favorite services to receive would definitely be microdermabrasion. I feel that it really improves skin texture and eliminates discoloration making your skin very even toned. Microdermabrasion also erases fine lines ! You want to make sure you go to a very reputable establishment before receiving this service. Your task should be performed by a licensed esthetician  or even a dermatologist. If you suffer from rosacea, I wouldn’t recommend getting Micro because it can leave your skin aggravated and cause redness. The micro process removes the very top layer of your skin, so some people’s skin will turn pink after for a short period of time. ( This doesn’t happen to me ) I like to get this done a couple days before a big event, leaving my skin polished and glowing. DO NOT go into the sun after getting Micro! Your skin will become easily irritated and more susceptible to sunburn. Regular removal of dead skin cells and surface impurities or exfoliation helps prevent excessive thickening of your skin which makes it look pasty and not fresh. EW! For my at home exfoliations I use Ole Hendricksen’s Walnut Complexion Scrub found at Sephora. I also LOVE Karuna’s exfoliating mask, which I use once a week. Use gentle circular strokes when exfoliating and don’t SCRUB or work on any area for too long because it will cause irritation. I exfoliate at home once a week. For your body you can use stronger scrubs and brushes. I use a loofah. I also love sugar scrubs. I exfoliate my body every time I shower and moisturize as soon as I get out so my whole body feels ultra soft. 

 Getting micro in this photo! I look like a mummy lol

Moisturize within minutes of stepping out of the shower. People think the best time to hydrate is after your skin is dried off….wrong. The best time to lather on facial moisturizers and body lotions is when your skin is still slightly damp. Your body absorbs the product better and in turn you end up using less product then you normally would!

 Simply Bee-utiful Lavender Honey lotion.. All natural.. feels so good !

-For shampoos stick to brands without sulfates. Sulfate is not good for your scalp and very drying. A LOT of shampoos have sulfate. I use Onesta shampoo & Nature’s Gate shampoo which are both natural and sulfate free. 

Argan Oil, grapeseed oil, avocado oil and sesame oil is my best kept secrets to smooth, soft skin…especially in the winter months. I mix a few drops into my body lotion, rub into my cuticles and layer on top of my moisturizer for added hydration.

    This oil is what I use to shave my legs 🙂 

There are many things to love about this time of year.. My birthday 😉 Thanksgiving, Christmas, crisp snowy mornings, holiday parties, festive lights, hot tea and cocoa, ice skating, jingle Ball, fireplaces with a room filled with lit candles, so much.  

 Jingle Ball’s After party last year with Redfoo

 My birthday last year.. dressed as batman lmao

 Ghetto fire place … haha we ran out of real fire wood

But unfortunately with these cold months ahead also brings on puffy eyes, headaches, runny noses, etc. So irritating to deal with, and takes a toll on your beauty routine as well. Make sure to take your vitamins, especially Vitamin C during these months, drink herbal teas, and keep warm. But here are some easy tips to help these beauty issues for the winter. 

 New tea cup 🙂

Puffy eyes? You need a soothing product to give them a quick boost. Bliss has some great eye treatments to help energize for an instant eye lift! Try fresh sliced cucumbers and frozen green tea bags for an at home remedy.  

Headache? Try an essential oil to dab on your temples, back of neck and under nose to inhale. I learned this at the spa. They usually do this before a massage. Also, eye pillows help! For an at home remedy drink apple cider vinegar mixed with a glass of water 😉
 
Dry, Raw nose?  Drink water! Also, Saline water is best natural remedy for dry nose. Saline nasal drops are available in pharmacy stores. Inhale steam, all you have to do is boil water in a bowl, once it has started to boil remove the vessel from the stove. Inhale the steam. The moisturizing effect of steam will help to relieve pain and dryness in the nose. It will also open the pores. 
 
Colds and sore throats? Sip on a cocktail of an immune-boosting squeezed lemon juice with warm water, ginger and raw honey (must be raw as this preserves healthful enzymes). Mix together one small tablespoon of raw honey with ¼ teaspoon of cinnamon. 
 
Increase your intake of healthy fats and oils this winter: avocado, coconut oil, olive oil, flaxseeds and oil, chia seeds, nuts, oily fish and fish oil!  Ok time to get ready for bed and catch up on my shows. Sorry for posting so late tonight, I had a surprise birthday dinner to attend for my favorite lady, Monica! Here are some photos below… Enjoy 🙂 
      
Another thank you card from one of my gorgeous brides 🙂
Hope everyone had a fabulous weekend! Xo
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Halloween: Avoiding a scary day after

 Hello beauties ! I want to first start off saying the thing I enjoy most about blogging with you is the feedback I’ve received and the support I am getting with over 4,000 hits in such a short period of time, I couldn’t be more motivated. It’s hard limiting myself just to 2-3 posts a week! I welcome any questions that might inspire additional future posts. I really couldn’t be happier how amazing this is all going. I do want to take a moment to talk about Hurricane Sandy that recently hit the East Coast. I’m so devastated with all that’s occurred the last several days in NJ, CT and NY resulting from this storm. I just wanted to provide everyone with a really easy way to give back, I know myself I was luckily enough to have very minimal effect and I’m sure some of you have been just as lucky so please just click the link below and give whatever you can.


I know this all seems “a bit commercial” but this is really important. Maybe the most important its ever been for some of us, because its actually in our back yard.. I’m sure you’ve seen some of these photos, but if you haven’t please take a look & help donate ! 
 
     
Aerial view of devastation along the barrier islands of Ocean County after Hurricane Sandy wreaked havoc on the Jersey Shore. Lots of fun memories at this place.
108-year-old subway system, which experienced substantial, unprecedented flooding, also all bus services, bridges and tunnels, as well as all Long Island Railroad, and Metro North lines. As of yesterday night seven subway tunnels under the East River have flooded, in addition to commuter tunnels, subway stations, rail yards and bus stations. So weird, we were just in these exact subways and was riding on the long island railroad saturday and sunday! 

    

 

So please, ladies & gents.. help donate and help our neighbors in need!  It’s devastating watching the footage of the city and other parts of the East Coast that was affected by Sandy. On a lighter note, how was everyone’s Halloween?! I was pleasantly surprised to see how many kids tricked or treated through the puddles in my neighborhood. I’m glad to see all the little monsters safe and parents squeezing some Halloween fun into these dark days. I had so many trick or treaters this year that I actually ran out of candy, so I had to dump my box of low calorie fruit snacks & granola bars into my halloween bowl… better than pennies the old folks used to hand out, right?! I know Halloween night also means tons of makeup. Chances are you probably had a full face of serious makeup/hair junk/costumery. Hopefully you all washed your faces very well last night, otherwise you probably woke up today with a hot, hot mess of the aftermath. No one needs to see tangled, gross hair… Walk of shame-equue makeup remnants and false eyelash strips hanging off your eyeballs. Whether you were a vampire, zombie, cat or lady gaga you probably used a lot of makeup to achieve the right affect. How is all this makeup going to affect your skin, you may ask? Haha, lets just say that you want to look scary on Halloween… not the day after.. So! Scary time is over, time to erase the evidence and restore your skin. 

     

First, you want to make sure that your cleanser is a product suitable for your skin type. The right cleanser is KEY! & Remember you don’t have to waste money on expensive cleansers- I personally splurge more on moisturizers containing sunscreen & antiaging Products.  

 

In the morning, you want to cleanse your face before you put on toner. You then want to apply moisturizer or sunscreen. I buy moisturizers that contain sunscreen in them. My two favorite products being Hylunia Day Moisturizer & Somme Institute’s Double Defense cream. Even if you cleansed and removed all makeup last night, a splash of water in the morning or standing under the shower simply is not enough. 

       

 

As you sleep, bacteria builds up on your skin along with oil. After you cleanse your skin in the morning you want to PAT your face dry (not wipe) & let me emphasize that the towel should be clean & changed daily. At night,  your going to want to repeat this process but apply a serum & anti-aging cream afterwards. I cannot emphasize this enough: NEVER GO TO BED WITHOUT CLEANSING YOUR FACE & REMOVING MAKEUP!  Unless you want the result of breakouts and clogged pores. Once in a while if I’m too lazy and exhausted to go through the process of cleansing my face after a night out of dancing, I keep cleansing cloths near my bed. Olay and Biore all make good cleaning pads. Apply a good night cream to ensure that the morning after Halloween, your skin has no resemblance to the Crypt Keeper 😉

 

I do recommend using Boscia’s Luminizing Black Mask. If you don’t want to splurge on this, go into Sephora and ask for a sample. They will make you up a free mini sample that is good for one use. If you don’t want to use Boscia then select a hydrating mask if your skin is on the drier side, and a clarifying mask if your skin tends to be more oily. It will definitely help restore your skin from all that Halloween makeup from yesterday. After the removal of the mask, moisturize, moisturize, moisturize. 

 

& Remember to drink a lot of water to flush out all that candy you munched on… I’m guilty too. Wompppp. 

 

Now, Thanksgiving may be a month away (which happens to land on my birthday this year), but it’s never too early to start prepping and stocking up on must-haves. Now that Halloween is over, Thanksgiving WILL be here quicker than you know, and winter will slowly creep itself in full bloom. In terms of beauty, here is what’s “in” for fall/winter (sourced by NY Fashion Week)….

-Red is timeless. Bold, red colors, red lips, red tinted blush, red nails… Red is just sexy!

Here’s a few photos at the Red party for Mandy Esposito’s Fashion Show during Fashion week , along with a bride with red lips, and a photo shoot for Kris Hester.

              

-Big, dramatic lashes with natural, soft makeup look. Clear, natural, toned skin is always in. Minimalist makeup, with a hint of blush enhancing those gorgeous cheekbones of yours, with Lush Lashes… Boom! Here’s some makeup applications I’ve recently done, that incorporated big lashes with natural, soft face makeup..

            

-Keep your eyes out for headbands! Headbands and head pieces are making a comeback. Look out for jewels, crystals and other embellishments featured on these big headbands, perfect for this fall/winter. 

  

-Keep it simple, clean, fresh with that little ounce of pop. 

 

Thanks for reading 🙂 xoxo