Ever since I got engaged nine months ago, I’ve noticed a strange trend. I mean besides the constant “It’s raining on my wedding day” nightmares that keep me up at night and the ever-present fear that by the time I’m hitched I’ll have less than $10 in my bank account. I’m talking about the constant messaging telling me I need to start “shredding” or “shedding for the wedding”. Every day I see a new article about pre-wedding juice cleanses and wedding diet plans, and I’ve pretty much had it. The idea that women need to hit a certain weight or look a certain way on their wedding day in order for it to be “the best day ever” is an outdated concept rooted in sexism. Here’s why I’m 100% OVER shedding for the wedding, and why you should be too.
It Feels Like Society’s Beauty Expectations Of Women, On Steroids
Women have been held to unrealistic beauty expectations since the beginning of time, but since getting engaged, I’ve found that this expectation of having the perfect body (whatever that means) is on a whole other level. Whenever my friends got engaged they would all say, “My wedding diet starts now”. They were literally getting engaged one day and counting calories the next. I didn’t quite understand their reaction, but now, I totally get it. I’m constantly inundated with wedding content about workout regiments, foods to avoid and skincare routines (apparently I’m months behind on this). It doesn’t matter whether or not you’re engaged, if you’re a human woman who goes online, you’re no stranger to the expectations society has for us. The only difference is that when you’ve got a ring on your finger, there’s an impending deadline to achieve the aforementioned perfect body, and it’s your wedding date.
It Feels Like A Prerequisite For Getting Married
Look, I understand wanting to look and feel your best on your wedding day, I know I do, but that means different things to different people. You may have a goal weight you’ve been trying to hit and the wedding day is a good motivator, or you may feel perfectly comfortable in your own body and not feel the need to do anything (more power to you). But whatever your situation is, losing weight shouldn’t feel like a prerequisite to getting married. Content about what you should and shouldn’t be eating before your wedding and articles that claim the hardest part of wedding planning is your fitness routine (has this person ever made a seating chart?) might make you question if something’s wrong with you if you’re not dieting or amping up your workout (myself included). If you find yourself thinking like that, try to block out all the social media noise and focus on doing what makes YOU feel like your best self. I know it’s easier said than done, but maybe unfollow the #weddingworkout hashtag for a while. Don’t worry, you can still get a marriage license even if you’re not going to bridal boot camp.
Designers Are Becoming More Size-Inclusive
You shouldn’t have to feel like you need to drop weight in order to fit in a wedding dress. Cookie cutter dresses are a thing of the past, and bridal designers today are making wedding dresses for all body types and sizes, not just the stick-thin models who debut them on the runway. Supermodel Ashley Graham recently teamed up with Pronovias to launch her own size-inclusive collection, while Fame and Partners launched a capsule collection for the modern woman with David’s Bridal and new wedding dress company Floravere has gowns up to size 26, ensuring women of all sizes they’ll be able to find something that makes them feel like a million bucks. If you’re worried you’ll have to lose weight to find a gown that fits you, you can kick that fear to the curb, because it’s become much easier in recent years to find the perfect gown, no matter your body type.
Grooms Are Held To Different Standards
After being inundated with ideas of ways to change the way my body looks in time for my wedding, I asked my fiancé if he noticed anything similar. He hadn’t. I can’t say I’m surprised that there’s not this insane pressure on men to look a certain way for their wedding day, but it was disappointing to hear nonetheless. I wanted to see if there was any content out there aimed at the groom’s physical appearance on the wedding day. Come to find out, there is, but it’s scarce. I found a list of things grooms should do leading up to the wedding, and the only appearance-related tip was for them to get a haircut. And on their 12-month checklist? Apparently all they need to do is whiten their teeth. No gyms advertising groom boot camp or weight loss tips for men before they go tux shopping. Sure, not all men care as much about their appearance as Tom Sandoval, but why are only the brides being told they need to shed for the wedding in order to “look our best”? I’m exhausted just thinking about all of the things I’m supposed to be doing to my body to get it “wedding ready”, meanwhile my fiancé’s downing fried chicken and playing video games not worrying about what the f*ck he’ll look like six months from now. Ugh, to be a man.
It’s Time To End The Madness
Look, I’m not saying that dieting and exercising before your wedding day is a negative thing, but I’m tired of reading articles that imply feeling your best on your wedding day means you have to be working out and dieting beforehand. Shouldn’t you feel your best on your wedding day because you’re marrying the love of your life? Or because you’re about to attend the best party of all time? Why is weight loss so intrinsically tied to how we feel about ourselves, and why is that link only reserved for women? Your physical appearance might be a part of your wedding day journey, but it shouldn’t hijack what the day is really all about. So, let’s shatter the notion that those surface-level things are in any way the key to having a happy and joyful wedding day. It’s time to say f*ck it and halt to a stop on our never-ending journey towards unattainable beauty standards. The best way to get “wedding day ready” is to be 100% you.
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Images: Jason Briscoe / Unsplash
If you’re a makeup lover, or if you simply don’t live under a rock, you know who Bobbi Brown is. Brown transformed the beauty industry by creating cosmetics to highlight a woman’s natural look, instead of trying to hide it. This sounds like a no-brainer for us now, but back in 1990, it was pretty f*cking revolutionary. She started her career by creating 10 simple, natural looking lipsticks that evolved into what is now a beauty empire. After leaving Bobbi Brown Cosmetics in 2016, Brown returned to her passion of focusing on life and wellness as she authored nine books, launched her lifestyle brand Beauty Evolution, her editorial site justBOBBI.com, and a line of wellness and beauty ingestible products titled EVOLUTION_18 (including, of course, a CBD gummy). She also imparts her wisdom on MasterClass, where subscribers can watch her perform makeup tutorials, describe her beauty philosophies, and teach lessons and tips to key makeup fundamentals. So, who better to ask about what beauty mistakes people make than a beauty icon, trailblazer, and entrepreneur?
There’s a reason conventional wisdom tells us to put our best face forward, and the reason Brown’s top beauty mistake is not about lipstick, or eyeliner, but about what people see first: your face. We’ve seen it in just about every Jersey Shore cast photo since the beginning of time: foundation and concealer that don’t match the skin tone. Brown has seen it, too, and cites it as the top beauty mistake she notices: “people who wear the wrong color foundation and concealer” is her number-one no-no. Another serious faux pas? “So many women will either skip concealer, which is really bad, or they will put a concealer on that’s too light and it just looks like a raccoon.” Ouch.
There are a few reasons Brown often sees people sporting the wrong shade concealer or foundation, which, thankfully, means it’s easy to fix. Number one is simply misunderstanding the purpose of these products. Brown explains, “the reason we wear foundation is to even out our skin, and not try to change the color of it.” So don’t get all aspirational during the winter by buying a shade you know is too tan for you—that’s what bronzer is for.
yeah i'm wild. yeah i like to gamble. yeah i like to order new foundation online despite having never tried that particular brand before and therefore having no idea about their shade range and whether or not the color would match me. yeah i'm crazy.
— sophie (@pixievalkyrie) December 4, 2019
Another culprit? Rushing the process and not taking the right care to find the perfect match, including not trying on foundation on your actual face. Brown emphasizes, “the only way to find the right color foundation is actually trying it on the side of your face—not your hand, not your inner arm—and if it disappears it’s the right color.” Which means, yes, actually trying out the foundation before buying it and not just hoping you’ll get it right. “You have to put in a little time and energy into choosing the right foundation,” Brown says, adding, “it’s hard to just buy something off of Instagram because you don’t know what actually works.” Adding that foundation or concealer to your cart is obviously fine if it’s the go-to shade you’ve been wearing for years, but if you’re trying it out for the first time, be warned that going off the color on your computer screen is a risk.
The good news is that while choosing the right foundation can be tricky, it’s not rocket science. First things first, Brown stresses the importance of having a good base, and that means going for an inside-out approach. She says, “Start with good skin. Make sure you’re eating properly and put your moisturizer on before you do anything else.” And here I am with my million serums and toners—who knew that just eating right and moisturizing would give me good skin? In all seriousness, Brown says, “for someone that’s been both a beauty expert, a makeup artist, and a health coach, the healthier your skin is the less makeup you need.”
if anyone is shopping for gifts for me, I wear Fenty foundation shade 185 and dollar size $185 as well
— Betches (@betchesluvthis) December 17, 2019
She also notes the importance of assessing how your foundation looks in the daylight so you can make sure it’s the same exact shade as your skin. And, if you’re using a bronzer, it needs to “tint your skin so it blends to your neck and your chest,” lest you avoid looking like Dorian Tyrell in The Mask, or Paris Hilton in the early 2000s. On top of that, recognize that you might be wearing too much makeup, or simply applying it in the wrong places. In Brown’s opinion, all you may need to do is “Throw on a quick concealer under your eyes, and really just use your foundation to touch areas that are red.” I’m someone who basically paints a mask on using my foundation, but Brown assures me, “you don’t need it all over.”
Overall, the key to wearing the right makeup, Brown emphasizes, is confidence. She says, “whatever your style, make sure you feel good when you look in the mirror.” She adds, “some people look great in a red lip, some people look great in a cat-eye, and other people look best in a nude face. So really, it’s about style and preference and if you’re comfortable with it, then you are confident.” Choose the makeup or style that brings out your natural beauty and make you feel fabulous. Then, you will shine.
Images: pixievalkyrie, betchesluvthis / Twitter
If you’re invested in the beauty world like every other woman aged 12 to IDGAF (which is my current age, according to my birth certificate), then you’ve probably established your skin type. But, if you haven’t yet discovered your type, fear not, because it’s never too late (the same goes for finding a relationship, @ my mom). And if you identified your skin type 10 years ago and have been rocking the same skin care routine since then, it might be good to do a little check-up, because beauty tips are constantly changing. Even the hallowed skin types (dry, oily, combination) are not set in stone. Especially when it comes to dry skin, we think we know everything there is to know about treating it: slather on moisturizer on moisturizer, right? Maybe not. Maybe your approach is wrong, because your assessment of your skin is wrong. Often, people will pile on moisturizer and assume doing so will brighten their dull appearance, when in reality, their skin is not dry at all—it’s dehydrated. And although you should still be using moisturizer no matter your skin type or condition, dehydrated skin requires a different solution than just dry skin.
I truly apologize if you are now hurt, confused, and filled with the urge to throw out every moisturizer, hydrating cream, and other miscellaneous skin-care product in your makeup drawer. Don’t freak out, this is all normal. Like I said, our knowledge of skin care is constantly evolving with new information. Like, it wasn’t too long ago when using oil on your face was at the top of the beauty no-no list. Only in the past few years or so has it been receiving high praise from just about every brand that knows the key to dry skin is sebum (aka oil). But even dry skin—which seems obvious—has its own set of myths, like often being confused with dehydrated skin. Knowing what’s what between the two is super important, because it can help you choose products that will yield the best results. So, what are their differences, really? Board-certified dermatologist Dr. Loren Gorcey Franco weighs in, below.
Myth: Dehydrated Skin & Dry Skin are Synonymous
a good thing about having terrible vision is that when i look in the mirror without my glasses on, i can’t see a single pore on my face. it’s flawless. i am the skincare queen.
— bug girl (@BugGirlOfficial) December 13, 2019
We wouldn’t blame you if you assumed that these two beauty words are one and the same. After all, one of the synonyms of “dry” in the dictionary is literally “parched.” So, what gives? According to Dr. Loren Franco, dry skin refers to a skin type that’s lacking oil, while dehydrated skin refers to a condition wherein someone is lacking water. She explains, “Dry skin is characterized by having overall less oil compared to normal or oily skin. It often feels itchy and flaky. In contrast, dehydrated skin doesn’t have enough water. Dehydrated skin will often have a dull appearance, feel tight, and exaggerate any wrinkles you already have.” She adds, “You can actually have oily skin that is dehydrated.” If you needed another friendly reminder to drink water, go do it now—you know, for beauty.
Fact: Dehydrated Skin Is Caused By External Factors
D O N T
F O R G E T
D R I N K
W A T E R
Y O U
S T U P I D
B I T C H
— reminding you to drink water (@drinkwaterho) November 30, 2019
Since people genetically have dry skin (hello, that’s me!), meaning they have less oil-producing glands and overall less oil in their skin, they can’t change that. Sad! However, you can change a condition like dehydrated skin, which is most commonly caused by weather, environment, and diet. Yes, that means humidity and coffee are not your skin’s friend! Ya hate to hear it.
Myth: Dehydrated Skin & Dry Skin Are Treated Exactly The Same Way
a girl becomes a woman the night she starts sticking to her skincare routine regardless of how drunk she is
— Sweatpants Cher 🔶 (@House_Feminist) December 15, 2019
Now that you know the key difference, it’s time to brush up on what your skin needs to feel like its best self. Dry skin needs facial oils, which means you can totally use an oil-based moisturizer and cleanser to nourish your skin back to health. Treating dehydrated skin, on the other hand, is a little more complex. Franco breaks it down for us: “Besides using a moisturizer, exfoliating once a week can help get rid of extra dead skin and allow your moisturizer to penetrate and work better. Try using a moisturizer or serum with hyaluronic acid, a molecule that you naturally make and is key in keeping your skin well hydrated.” Basically, if you have dehydrated skin, your routine may be a little more complex than if it’s simply dry. Dr. Franco adds, “At night, especially in the winter when the heat is on, our skin tends to dry out. Try using a heavier moisturizing cream at night to counteract this. If you are acne-prone, make sure it is oil-free or non-comedogenic.” On the bright side, if you have dehydrated skin, now you have an excuse to blow an entire paycheck at Sephora on all this stuff.
Fact: Both Dehydrated Skin & Dry Skin Need to Moisturize
when you’re doing skincare but your skin doesn’t care
— william (@williamcortesjr) December 12, 2019
Everyone needs oil and water to seal in moisture. Hence, everyone—including those with dry and dehydrated skin—need to moisturize. “Drinking water keeps you hydrated, but unfortunately most of the water we drink gets taken up by other organs before it reaches the skin. Keeping yourself hydrated is key, however, it isn’t enough to treat dehydrated skin. The best way to add moisture back to your skin is with a good moisturizer,” Franco explains.
Even though there is a difference between the two, ultimately most dermatologists don’t differentiate between dry and dehydrated skin. Instead, they often just recommend a moisturizer, which really combats both problems. Moral of the story? Drink water and moisturize. But, of course, choose your moisturizer based on your skin type.
Images: Juta / Shutterstock.com; buggirlofficial, drinkwaterho, house_feminist, williamcortesjr / Twitter
Eyebrow trends are fickle at best. At one time, your arches were supposed to be plucked and pencil thin, and now you can’t scroll through your discover page without seeing a close-up of a blocky, over-filled brows that Groucho Marx would envy. But when it comes to getting your best eyebrows, it isn’t all about beating them into submission. Try taking a gentler approach toward shaping that will be kinder to yourself and your brows in the long run… and also make them look better. Read below for tips on how to train your eyebrows so they don’t suck.
Find Out What You’re Working With
Keeping up with my eyebrows is an extreme sport I swear
— cupid (@taqawi_05) May 25, 2019
Counterintuitive? Yes. But first get completely hands-off, says New York brow expert Joey Healy. To do that, you’ll want to let your brows go untouched for about four to six weeks. I know it sounds scary, but that’s the amount of time it takes for a full growth cycle. “Even if you’re plucking with the best intentions, you might be reiterating the same shape that you want to change,” Healy explains. (Aka if you don’t like how your brows are looking, it’s probably your fault.) Holding off on plucking is also the only way to see what fullness you can get back if you have patchiness.
You can also try adding a growth serum to your routine, using it twice daily for those six weeks as a kick start. (Afterward, you can switch to once daily.) Los Angeles Brow expert Kristie Streicher notes that the first grow-out period is the hardest for those who have a habit of tweezing just a couple hairs a day (you know who you are), but it’s critical. “Once you start removing all the unwanted hair at once, it starts training the hair to grow where you want it,” she says. Translation: Your brows will get easier to maintain and will naturally hold the shape you want longer. Yeah, it’s annoying to not have instant gratification, but you’ve got to keep your eyes on the prize.
Set Brow Goals
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Despite trends that come and go, there is a perfect shape where your brows should begin, arch, and end, and it’s based on your own face shape. Says Streicher, “This brow creates a frame above the eye that accentuates the cheekbones and opens the entire face,” Unfortunately, these may or may not be the brows you were born with. To find your ideal shape, all you need is straight edge like a pencil. Find where your brows should start by holding the pencil vertically against the bridge of your nose (not the nostril!) up to your brow bone. That’s where your brows should begin. Maybe mark it with eyeliner or something if you’re new to this. Tweezing those wispy front hairs away will make your brows look too far apart, but removing any hairs far past or underneath will help open up the eyes for a peppier look.
To find the point of arch, use the same straight edge diagonally from the bridge of your nose, across your pupil to your brow. It will land about two thirds the length of your brow. A common mistake is making the arch too close to the bridge, which you should avoid at all costs, because as Healy puts it, “Centered arches always make you seem surprised, sometimes even worried.” Yikes. And worse, the rounded shape can exacerbate under-eye bags—so imagine having hungover, puffy face at all times. Finally, to find the correct end point, hold the straight edge against the bridge to the outer corner of the eye. Any hairs that grow past this can create the impression of drooping—get rid of them.
Then, Tweeze Away
For the artistic precision your sweet face deserves, stick to tweezing for hair removal. If you’re scared you’re going to mess it up alone in your bathroom, try a specialist who
will hold your hand is going to take the time to go hair by hair. I’m sorry, but this means you’re going to have to break up with your waxer for a bit. While it may seem more efficient to wax or thread, over time those harsher methods can break down the elasticity of your skin. They can also cause new issues with your eyebrows by thinning the hairs you need or creating an odd geometry for the brows that’s hard to come back from. Instead, go slow with the tweezers. Perch next to a window for natural light and—this is the crazy part—ditch the magnifying mirror. “They make you lose perspective,” says Healy. “You look too closely and brows end up overly plucked.” Taking a step back helps you see the shape of your brows from a normal angle. If you do mess up—just take a pause. Don’t try to balance them out, because you’ll definitely end up f*cking your whole situation up even more. You might need to take a small L and put a pin in the plucking for a little while. Just keep using your serum and a little makeup to tide you over. Repeat after me: Do. Not. Pluck. More!!!
Keep It Up
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Excited to share my latest tutorial – HOW TO: Fill In Sparse Brows // Whether you have little-to-no hair, misshaped, or no shape at all… you can achieve a natural looking brow by strategically building your products. The most important key is to work with what you have; making it look believable and the most natural. Follow along and achieve this look at home! Link in bio. #browtutorial #featheredbrowsbyks #fillinginyourbrows #browtips #sparsebrows #naturalbrows
Consider your brows the same why you think about your highlights or clear skin—it’s not a one-and-done deal, and maintenance is required. After shaping, stay on a schedule of waiting to tweeze every four to six weeks based on how fast your brows grow. You’ll notice over time that the stragglers will start to fall in line and stop growing where you keep getting rid of them, helping you keep in mind your preferred shape with less effort (win!). Restraint is your friend when it comes to maintenance. Healy suggests if you’re worried about overdoing it at home, set a timer for five minutes and stop tweezing when the buzzer sounds—that way you can’t go too far into tadpole territory. If sparseness persists, the quickest fix is a little brow powder. Putting color on the skin between the hairs gives the illusion of fuller brows without looking unnatural. For thicker brows that still need definition and lift, grab a tinted gel to get the fluffy look that’s currently trending. The goof-proof way to apply product is to go from the tail towards the front of the brow—overly drawn and heavy in the tail makes you look out-of-date. If you’re uncertain about your color, cheat towards using a shade that’s a touch lighter and ashier than you think. Once you get a routine down, it shouldn’t take more than a minute to get awesome brows. After that, you can worry about everything else.
Build Your Brow Kit:
- Joey Healy Brow Renovation Serum, $125
- Grande Cosmetics GrandeLash – MD Lash Enhancing Serum, $65
- Hourglass Arch Brow Volumizing Fiber Gel, $28
- Glossier Boy Brow, $16
- Joey Healy Luxe Brow Powder in Corduroy, $28
- Benefit Cosmetics Fool Proof Brow Powder, $24
- Anastasia Clear Brow Gel, $22
Images: Felipe Bustillo / Unsplash; kristiestreicher, joeyhealybrows / Instagram; @taqawi_05/Twitter
Your eyes are the window the soul, so says probably some old dead white guy from a million years ago. Somehow, not much has changed because we still are obsessed with making our eyes look bigger when putting on makeup. Focusing on your eyes makes a huge difference to your overall look. It makes you look more awake, alert, and often way prettier. I’m just basing this off my own experience when I don’t wear any makeup and people keep asking me if I’m sick or tired (f*ck you too). Spoiler alert guys, I’m an overworked insomniac, I am always tired. I’m just ugly today.
Regardless of the actual size of your eyes, there are many ways to emphasize them using makeup so that people will look in your soul windows (gross) instead of at the acne on your chin. Here are the best products to buy so you never get that “oh you look tired” comment ever again:
Step 1: De-Puff
Yeah, I get it, I’m supposed to sleep more and I won’t look tired, it’s not f*cking rocket science but it’s just not an option. When you’re exhausted, your eyes look small and puffy, so the first remedy in our line of defense to tired eyes is to use some kind of caffeinated cooling product, like this one from Milk Makeup. This is my new favorite product, actually. It feels amazing and calms the bags under your eyes. The caffeine will send that puffiness away and the cold is really refreshing. You can also use a gel eye mask that you left in the fridge or cold spoons to do the trick.
MILK MAKEUP Cooling Water
Step 2: Whiten
Wasn’t there some stupid thing going around a couple years ago where dumbasses were actually putting bleach or lemon juice in their eyes to whiten their eyes/change their eye color? I’m going to just go ahead and call that Darwinism at its finest. Great job, everyone. Anyway, do not do that. If the whites of your eyes are looking super red, it will make your eyes look smaller. The whites of your eyes contrast to your skin tone, so use Visine (particularly on days you’re really tired) to neutralize redness and make your eyes look bigger and brighter.
Visine Maximum Strength Redness Relief Formula Eye Drops
Step 3: Line *Correctly*
If you’re super pale like I am, your eyes probably just blend into your skin tone. Ugh. The key here is contrast, so regardless of your skin, you want to make your eyes pop as much as possible to get them to appear bigger and more awake. Use dark eyeliner to line the top of your lash line completely. When it comes to the bottom lashes, either skip them altogether or make sure you’re only lining below the waterline where your lashes start. If you line your waterline, it will actually make your eyes look smaller. Lining below the lashes creates the contrast you want but makes the waterline blend into the rest of your eyeball, making your eyes look bigger. This is the mistake we all did in middle school—no top liner, and super thick bottom waterline liner. It was gross and made you look trashy with teeny swollen eyes.
This is correct:
And use a smudgy eyeliner pencil like this one to achieve the perfect bottom liner (I like to use liquid for the top):
URBAN DECAY 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencil
Step 4: Volumize Lashes
To further the contrast to the whites of your eyes, eyelashes make all the difference. This is why eyelash extensions make everyone so much prettier. However, those are expensive. And they rip out your real lashes. Leave those for people who don’t have any eyelashes on their own and tons of cash to blow, or Bachelor contestants. You can imitate the look with glue-them-on-yourself falsies or just a really great volume mascara. I switch mascaras often, but my all-time favorite is Diorshow. If you have a good dupe, please tell me in the comments.
To make your mascara look like falsies, do the following: swipe your lashes with translucent powder, then curl, then apply mascara. Let it dry, apply powder again, 2nd coat of mascara, dry, powder, third coat, dry, curl again. I also like to put a little powder on my eyelash curler before I use it with mascara on so it doesn’t stick (and rip out my eyelashes by accident). You are welcome.
DIOR Diorshow Mascara
Step 5: Bring Out Your Eye Color
There are two ways to really bring out your eye color: similar colors or complementary colors. I took years of color theory and got a painting degree for this very moment. I was like, hmm should I be the next Da Vinci or should I tell sassy betches how to make their eyes look bigger? And I chose you. Again, you are so welcome. Complementary means the colors are opposite on a color wheel, which provides maximum possible contrast. I trust you know what the word similar means.
So for blue eyes, you either need to wear a blue toned eye shadow (except not that frosted blue from 7th grade, please) or an orange based (or similar) color, like autumnal browns and golds. For brown eyes, they are considered a neutral and don’t have a true opposite, so you find a color within the brown to emphasize.
If you have warm brown eyes, you should wear gold tinged shades to make your eyes look more honeyed, or blue shades for contrast. If you have cool-toned brown eyes, try blues to make the the color deeper, or reddish purples to make them pop.
I am a green-eyed person, which makes my opposite red, and since I can’t seem to make green shadow or red shadow look good, I look for reddish pinks or purples to make my eyes look greener, like the new Cherry palette from Urban Decay. You could also do a colored eyeliner instead of basic black to really make your eyes pop.
URBAN DECAY Naked Cherry Eyeshadow Palette
Now that you know how to make your eyes look bigger using makeup, go out and take a bunch of selfies—you won’t even have to use one of those dumb animal filters!
Images: Alex Perez / Unsplash; Sephora (4); Amazon
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As January drones on and our New Year’s resolutions crumble, we look for other ways to spice up what’s left of our lives. There’s a right and wrong way to do this, and a haircut could go in either of those directions. We’ve all gotten a little too scissor-happy and ended up regretting it for the next year while waiting for our hair to grow back. (I’m convinced your hair grows slower when you actually want it to be longer.) So before you make an appointment with your stylist, maybe ask yourself: do you really want bangs or do you just need a therapist and a weighted blanket? Is your haircut a cute “new year, new me” transformation, or a cry for help? Don’t just take our opinion. We consulted hair stylist-extraordinaire, Dhiran Mistry from Spoke & Weal Soho, to spill the tea on which haircuts are truly the worst.
Good Idea: The power-suit of hairstyles has to be a badass bob or lob (aka a long bob). It’s sharp, means business, and doesn’t text its ex at 3am. While it can be a risky hairstyle to try, chopping off those dead locks and getting a clean look seriously helps you portray the image that you have your sh*t together. Mistry also suggests keeping your bob as simple as possible, no high-low or low-key mullets.
Cry For Help: Where it takes a real f*cking turn is when you get too round and bubbly with it. We do not want any bowl cuts happening here. This tragic look, also known as the mom bob, basically screams “I’m 36, my name is Linda, I comment hearts on Reese Witherspoon’s Instagrams thinking she’ll see it and care, and I’ve started hiding the good wine from the kids.”
Good Idea: This hairstyle is often super stigmatized, according to Mistry. As a stylist originally from London, he says that many Europeans love to rock the pixie look, but since being in America, he’s noticed many women are uncomfortable cutting their hair that short. For one simple reason: men. They ruin f*cking everything. Mistry’s best advice: dump his ass. Don’t let him micromanage your hair and try to craft you into some dumb image he has in his head of what beauty should look like. You’re your own prize, betch.
Cry For Help: I know you might be traumatized from the pixie cuts of Kate Gosselin circa her TLC show or Jamie Lee Curtis à la Freaky Friday, but these are not the inspos you show your hairdresser.
Venture into the stylings of Cara Delevingne, Janelle Monae, or my personal favourite pixie on the planet, Lupita Nyong’o. So relive your study abroad days and go for this classy European cut.
Good Idea: Rocking a bald head is one of the most confident and badass hairstyles you can go for. You ain’t hiding anything behind lushes locks or tight curls, it’s all on display. Mistry says many women can pull off this look, but few find the courage to actually do it. He adds that most people (me) use their hair as a distraction from their face because they’re self-conscious about their appearance. But bald bitches know they look sick AF with or without hair.
Cry For Help: If your mental health is questionable and you’ve been on a two-week bender, you’re at an extremely high risk of going all Britney 2007. This is not just a cry for help, but a f*cking scream. If you go bald, do it right or not at all. Impulse head shaving has never once turned out to be a good thing. I can literally promise you that.
One of the best shaved-head looks has to be iconic South Sudanese model and former VS Angel, Grace Bol:
Good Idea: Most clients that come to Mistry ask for bangs in order to cover something up—forehead, acne, and in a recent case, a scar from a woman’s Christmas tree falling on her. In other cases of bang requests, Mistry has recently been getting a ton for microbangs. When done right, microbangs can look gothic-chic and modern.
Cry For Help: Cutting them yourself. Enough said.
Good Idea: Though you can’t perfect the messy bun, you may be able to rock a modern-day shag hairstyle. This look has a ton of texture, layers, and sex appeal. Flawless beings such as Alexa Chung and Julianne Hough are perfect examples to show your hairdresser, Mistry suggests.
Cry For Help: Please, for the love of all that is good in this world. Do not show them a picture of Lisa Rinna. This is NOT the type of shag you’re going for. We love Rinna, but you don’t have a daily glam squad to maintain such hair on yourself, and before you know it you’ll be collecting cigarette buds and a small family of birds in your nest of hair.
Good Idea: We love a good Balayage, but the absolute key to dying your hair according to Mistry is not to stray too far from your original shade. The further you go from your natural color, the more likely you are to damage your hair, and there ain’t nothing cute about that.
Cry For Help: Don’t trick yourself into thinking blondes have more fun. Bleached out peroxide blonde hair is just about as classy as Lindsay Lohan’s mugshot(s). Dip dying died along with Tumblr in 2012, so don’t try the partial bleaching.
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Would you believe it if I said this was fine hair? @saalesci has a gorgeous head of hair but had been growing it out for her amazing wedding a few months ago. The problems that occur from not cutting your hair for a long time aren’t always so apparent to the naked eye, it’s the internal damage that it does to the structure and density. Typically the ends feel a little dry but the overall head of hair can feel inconsistent and start to feel very “thin” on the ends. Anyways now her hair looks like this and it doesn’t matter about the months of damage that occurred before ????❤️????✂️
For more hair inspiration, follow Dhiran Mistry on Instagram.
Images: Adrian Sava / Unsplash; dhiranmistry_ (2), alexachung, yukamannami, gracebol, caradelevingne / Instagram
Raise your hand if you’ve ever been personally victimized at the start of a new year by your own ambitions. You know, those resolutions you’ve set for yourself saying you’re going to cut back on ordering from UberEats, slow down on the booze, or finally start using your gym membership? (Same, same.) While those resolutions tend to be forgotten by February (or like… the second week of January), I’ve rounded up some not-so annoying beauty resolutions that are pretty easy to stick to in the new year. Your hair and skin will thank you, and then you’ll thank me, so it works out for everyone.
Finally, beauty resolutions that will make you like, really pretty (and healthy), and don’t require working out every day or cutting
daily weekly happy hours out of your schedule.
1. Remove Your Makeup Every Night Before Bed
… Yes, even when you’re drunk. I know, the last thing you want to do when you get in from a long day (or long night) is remove your makeup before you lay down for your beauty rest, but the truth is you really should. You see, your makeup can trap dirt and toxic environmental pollutants and lead to a number of concerns like clogged pores, acne, dry skin, and the degradation of collagen (which eventually leads to premature aging). Just do it, ok? You know what’ll make it a hell of a lot easier to stick to? Makeup wipes.
For wipes that will take off all of your makeup (yes, even pesky mascara), no face wash or sink needed, grab La Roche-Posay’s Effaclar Cleansing Towelettes and take “lazy but efficient” to the next level. You can even use them while you’re in bed if you’re willing to be that
La Roche-Posay Effaclar Clarifying Oil-Free Cleansing Towelettes
2. Use A Mask Multiple Times A Week
If you’re super lazy, adding another step to your beauty routine may seem like an impossible task. But let me tell you, I swear there is plenty of time for them and they will do wonders for your hair and skin. First off, as far as hair masks go, there are plenty of masks that you can massage into your locks overnight and wash them out in the morning. For face masks, opt for one that targets your main skin concerns. Plaster it on while you’re binge-watching Netflix, in the morning when you’re checking all of your social media platforms before you get out of bed, or while you’re waiting for your shower to warm up. The key is to use it 2-3 times a week. That way, you’re actively addressing your skin issues but you’re not over-using it so it won’t dry out or otherwise irritate your skin.
Lab to Beauty’s The Green Cure Mask contains matcha, french green clay, lavender, and the ever-trendy CBD oil to detoxify the skin, calm redness, and revitalize for a healthy, glowing complexion.
Lab To Beauty The Green Cure Mask
On wet hair, apply this overnight hair mask to calm frizz, provide nourishment and just make your strands smell so much better. Just be sure to rinse out in the morning and then style as usual.
Matrix Biolage 3-Butter Control System Overnight Mask, $25
3. Stop Self-Medicating With Sex And Alcohol
So this one is a little more for your brain and emotional well-being. But regardless, if your anxiety is at an all-time high, your skin is freaking out, your bank account is drained, and you’ve been ghosted by too many f*ckboys to keep track of in 2018 (I swear, I’m not writing an autobiography here), odds are you should probably stop self-medicating by getting drunk and hooking up with even more f*ckboys. Instead, clear your head, ease your anxieties, and get focused using natural supplements. These vitamins contain mood-enhancing ingredients like organic St. John’s wort, organic gingko leaf, vitamin B6, and GABA. They literally just lighten your mood and clear your thoughts to help you focus and get back on track (whatever track that is).
Love Wellness Mood Pills, $18.74
4. Drink Your Collagen
Ingestible collagen became like, really trendy in 2018—and for good reason. It works from the inside out for a more effective outcome compared to topical collagen products. And in case you weren’t aware, your collagen production begins to slow down in your mid to late 20’s. So odds are, if you’re reading this and you’d like to maintain a smooth, youthful complexion, then start chugging collagen every morning ASAP. Skinade is part of my daily morning routine, and not only does it taste good, but I honestly notice such a difference in my skin. The peach and mangosteen drink combats the signs of aging by preventing the breakdown of collagen and improving moisture and hydration. Basically? Your skin will appear smooth, supple (ew but true), and hydrated in less than 30 days.
Skinade 30-Day Pack
5. Get Into A Consistent Skincare Routine
I’m sure you’ve heard all sorts of conflicting things about what your skincare routine should and shouldn’t include. Let me put it plainly for you: getting into any consistent routine should help keep your skin issues at bay. What I’m trying to say is, do you keep randomly trying all sorts of different products and you keep experiencing breakouts? If the answer is yes, then consistency is key. Try getting into a routine using the same products and the same steps everyday and watch as your skin beings to glow. My recommendation? Try cleansing, using a serum, and then a moisturizer every morning and every night.
6. Stay Out Of The Sun And Start Using SPF
In case you still hit the tanning beds or go into the sun without SPF on your face, I’m not going to flat-out tell you to stop because well, I used to be the same way. But what I will tell you is that UV rays really do f*ck with the texture of your skin, especially as you enter your late twenties when your collagen naturally starts to deplete. Protect your face in the sun. And if you’re anything like me and crave a bronze glow, try a self-tanner for your face. If you want an effective SPF that doesn’t just protect but also moisturizes and feels good on your skin, Glossier’s invisible shield doesn’t disappoint.
Glossier Invisible Shield SPF 35
But when you still need that glow so that you don’t look absurdly pale, sickly, and all around ghost-like, Tan-Luxe’s The Face Self Tan Drops can be dropped in with your daily facial moisturizer and then develop in two to four hours for an amazing bronzy glow. Just remember, though, just like with any other self tanner, you’re going to want to stay away from getting your face wet while the color develops (aka no bathing, swimming, sweating, pouring champagne in your mouth/all over your face, etc.)
Tan-Luxe The Face Illuminating Self Tan Drops
7. Use Sulfate-Free Shampoos And Conditioners
Sulfates in your shampoos can cause build-up, strip your color (if you have color-treated hair), and basically make it gross, dry, brittle, and hard to style. Sulfates are the chemicals that we associate with a rich, foamy lather, but guess what: You don’t actually need that sh*t for shampoo to work. Take my word for it and opt for a sulfate-free option.
SheaMoisture Manuka Honey & Yogurt Hydrate Repair Shampoo & Conditioner
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Header photo by kevin laminto on Unsplash
Highlighter is the trendiest makeup product that you should be using rn. The goal is to have beautiful, glowing skin, whether you’re fresh-faced or going totally glam. However, since it’s a comparatively new item added to our beauty repertoire, people are still really screwing this up. It’s like when eyebrows became trendy and we all filled them in so hard they looked like they were drawn in with Sharpie. It took practice to get used to feathering them out and figuring out the pencil/gel/powder debacle. You’ll get used to highlighter eventually, but just in case you don’t, lemme help you out. Here are 5 highlighter mistakes you’re probably making, and how to fix it before anybody notices.
1. Putting It In The Wrong Spots
The point of highlighter is to highlight where the sun would naturally hit your face. Yes, that includes even the fun colors. This means you should highlight your cheekbones (above where you put your blush), your brow bone, nose, and chin. If you want to make yourself look more awake and your lips look bigger, dab some highlighter in the inner corners of your eyes and above the center of your lips. You can also use it on your collarbones or breasts to emphasize them. Do not just sweep it mindlessly everywhere. It’s not 2002 and you’re not using sparkly Victoria’s Secret lotion. Do not put it on a zit. You’re highlighting certain things to look dewy and more contoured. There’s a reason for it.
2. Not Priming
Now that we know highlighter only belongs in select places, if you’re going to wear it, you need to make sure it does not budge. That means your priming and setting game needs to be on point. A primer provides the perfect base for your skin, melts imperfections so the texture is even, and keeps your makeup from smudging or getting oily. I like SHASHBOX Photo Finish Foundation Primer, but you live your life how you see fit.
SMASHBOX Photo Finish Foundation Primer
Now, setting spray sets your makeup. Duh. We’ve talked about how obsessed I am with Supergoop! Defense Refresh Setting Mist, so if you are still reading my articles and haven’t tried it yet IDK what you’re doing with your life. You should be using primer and setting spray if you want your makeup to last more than like, 2 hours. You don’t want your careful highlighting to end up smudged all over your entire face.
3. Using Too Much
If the point is to look pretty and dewy and like your cheekbones could cut glass and you’re not hungover, then putting highlighter all over your face is not going to do that. It’s going to make you look greasy, oily, and sweaty. Don’t do it. Much like with blush or bronzer, use this sh*t in moderation and only just enough.
4. Not Matching Colors
Maybe this just bothers me, but if you’re going to go all out and do a colored highlighter, please match it to your color family (or complement it). I love colored highlighter, but do it right. Does anyone else care about this? Probs not. But it’ll make your whole effect look more put together if you try. For example, if you’re wearing a bluish-red lipstick (like a cool tone), use the blue highlighter. If you’re doing a warm brown eyeshadow, use gold highlighter. Do you see? You’re matching, like you would clothes or jewelry.
5. Using Too Many Products
Unless you’re a makeup artist and you know how to put on no less than 56 products and still somehow make it look like you’re wearing zero makeup, be careful with piling on too much product on your face. The more stuff you add, the more likely it is to cake, crease, or crack (again, use primer first always—it will help). But if you’re going to wear heavy foundation, heavy blush, a f*ckton of bronzer, maybe like, go easy on the highlighter? You know, pick a lane. I don’t really like heavy makeup anyway, so I recommend getting a light and blendable highlighter, like the Winky Lux Strobing Balm Cream Highlighter that will melt into your skin instead of piling on top of everything else. The point is to look naturally glowy, not like the scary clown from IT.
Winky Lux Strobing Balm Cream Highlighter
Images: Giphy (4); Sephora; Winky Lux