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By Jennifer Davidson and Monique Hankins

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From using Preparation H on puffy eyes, toothpaste on pimples and Crisco on super dry skin, we’ve heard our share of unusual beauty tricks over the years. But not all secret remedies are wacky, here are a few of our favorites that really work:

1. Avocados not only make a delicious dip for your favorite chips, they also make a nourishing treat for your skin. For a deep moisturizing treatment, take two whole, ripe avocados and mash them in a bowl, then slather all over your body. Let it sit for 20 minutes before rinsing for buttery smooth skin.

beautysecrets1.jpeg2. Rub solid antiperspirant/deodorant (the kind that goes on clear) on feet to prevent blisters, and of course, stinky feet.

3. If you experience irritation after waxing or shaving, whole fat milk works great for treating skin. Since milk protein is an anti-inflammatory, it’s perfect for soothing affected areas. Add a few cubes of ice to one cup of (whole) milk, saturate a washcloth or cotton ball and apply to area. Let it sit for 5 minutes. Repeat until skin feels better, then rinse.

4. Create an “aspirin mask” to help treat breakouts. The components of aspirin are similar to salicylic acid which helps exfoliate and unclog pores. Crush a few aspirin, mix with drops of water to form a paste, then apply to face. Leave on for 5-10 minutes. Rinse. (If your skin is dry, add some honey into the mixture)

5. Dryer sheets are great for taming frizzies and fly-aways. Just lightly run one across your hair and your tresses will be tamed.

6. Vaseline mixed with sugar makes a great exfoliant for your lips, leaving them soft, smooth and sweet.

7. Olive oil makes a great moisturizer for lips, cuticles, rough elbows and more.

8. Apple cider vinegar is a great way to combat dandruff without all the chemicals found in most dandruff shampoos. One cup of the vinegar plus one cup of cold water on the scalp after shampooing and conditioning, left on for one minute, then rinsed with cool water will balance the pH of your scalp and also help relieve any itching.

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9. Mascara works to temporarily hide grey hairs in between color appointments. Choose a shade that matches your hair at the root and cover, cover, cover!

10. Need to powder your nose but don’t have blotting tissue? Toilet seat covers in public restrooms will absorb excess oil from your face without disturbing your makeup.

11. For moms with babies, baby wipes are a great makeup remover if you’re tired and in a rush. The cloths are soft and the formulas are mild enough for delicate skin. They’re also great for removing stains from clothing in a pinch.

12. For natural teeth whitening, rub a fresh strawberry over your teeth. The fruit contains natural whitening agents and the seeds work great for cleaning. Since they also contain sugar and acids, it’s important to brush immediately afterwards with a fluoride toothpaste. Catherine Zeta Jones swears by this trick!

This post has been brought you by Only in a Woman’s World.

vanessa hudgens.jpgWhen it comes to summer hairstyles, effortless-looking styles are always the goal. Vanessa Hudgens’ hair at the 2009 MTV Movie Awards was a great example of an I-didn’t-try-too-hard style that works for all summer occasions. With tousled waves and smooth, side swept bangs, a style like this can be yours with a little help from the right tools and products.

 

 

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Shampoo and condition hair with a smoothing formula. Try Peter Lamas Avocado Olive Ultra-Smoothing Shampoo and Conditioner ($17.99 each, drugstore.com) for a sleek, no-frizz look.

 

 

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Spray damp hair at the roots with a volumizing mist to add body and shine (do this while your head is flipped over for added volume). Try Peter Lamas Chinese Herbs Revitalizing Nutrient Mist ($20, drugstore.com). If your hair is naturally curly, apply a straightening balm throughout the hair.

Blowdry your hair, using a round brush, concentrating mostly on the roots— you want them to be smooth, but with volume. It’s ok if the lower half stays damp, unless your hair is curly, then you will need to blow it out straight.

smooth n shine mousse.jpgOn damp hair, apply mousse to hair while tousling with hands. Try Smooth ‘N Shine Curling Mousse, $2.99, folica.com. Let hair air dry or blowdry on a low setting with a diffuser. Using a large barrel curling iron, wrap various strands around the barrel for more defined waves.

If your hair is curly, after blowing out your hair, take your hair in sections, starting from the bottom first, wrapping, not clamping, the hair in 1 to 2 inch sections around a 2” curling iron. This will create a loose curl. Alternate the direction you wrap your hair to avoid a “too perfect” look.


Once finished, use fingers to loosen and tousle your hair. Spray with a shine enhancing product, then a finishing spray with hold. We like Herbal Essences new Tousle Me Softly Hairspray ($2.99, drugstores) because it offers the perfect, flexible hold.
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No time to wash your hair today? Don’t sweat it. You can make your hair look great without water simply by using a great dry shampoo. We love these little wonders when we need to refresh our blowouts, absorb excess oil or simply to reduce the amount of washings to preserve hair color. Here are some tips for using dry shampoos, then take a look at the ones we think you will love.

1.) Choose a dry shampoo (take a look at our choices below)

2.) Brush out your hair to make sure there are no tangles (and be sure your hair is dry, especially if you plan to use it after a workout)

3.) Apply the dry shampoo

**If you choose a powder over a spray, do it over the sink, and apply about a tablespoon of the shampoo to the top of your head and massage it throughout your scalp. Then, be sure to brush your hair well to distribute the product throughout your hair.

**If using a spray, aim the nozzle at your roots, lifting up sections of your hair. Rub the product into your scalp. Allow 5-10 minutes to go by to allow the dry shampoo to absorb the oil in your hair.

4.) Brush the shampoo out of your hair. Turn your head upside down and brush out all of the powder. Use a hair dryer to speed up this process. Style as usual.    

 

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Klorane Gentle Dry Shampoo with Oat Milk is fabulous for girls on-the-go. This dry shampoo uses oat extract, cyclodextrins, and natural polysaccharides ( these are micronised powders with excellent oil-absorbing properties) to clean the hair without washing. $18, sephora.com

 

 

 

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T3 360° Refresh Volumizing Dry Shampoo adds volume and texture in addition to cleaning hair. The formula is designed to give thirsty strands a break from washes and promote hair that looks and feels healthy. We love that it comes in three color formulas to compliment the tones in our hair— genius! $25, beauty.com

 

 

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Fekkai Au Naturel Dry Shampoo uses cotton fibers, rice starch, and corn starch to eliminate excess oil from the hair, is free of parabens and sulfates, and uses natural ingredients to neutralize odor and prevent dirt buildup. Sephora exclusive. $23, sephora.com

 

 

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Ojon Rub-Out Dry Cleanser is made with the same Ojon oil that the brand is known for, so it gives locks an added boost of hydration. This dry cleanser also works great if you overuse a styling product— simply spray and rub into the scalp revealing luminous, healthy-looking hair. Works for all hair types and is eco-friendly. $24, spalook.com





We asked our friend and celebrity makeup artist, Melissa Walsh, to put together a fabulous and time-friendly routine to help you put together a look on Valentine’s Day that would be sure to make you feel and look your best. Whether you plan a romantic night out with the one you love, or a night out with the girls, don’t hesitate to try these tips (along with product suggestions), and have a great Love Day!

 

Melissa says:

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“Start with a light serum that smooths the skin and sinks in immediately without leaving an oily residue - Janson Beckett Vitamin C&C Facial Serum ($44.50, spalook.com) is perfect for this.”

 

 

 

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“Then, dust a powder foundation all over, being careful to blend well - Smashbox Halo Hydrating Powder ($59, beauty.com) gives a really natural glow with great coverage.”

 

 

 

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“Using a fluffy brush, swirl a sheen powder blush onto the apples of your cheeks - I love Cargo’s Catalina blush ($24, sephora.com) as it is a perfect pinky-coral shade.”

 

 

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“As you don’t have much time, use one shade of eyeshadow all over the lid and into the crease; think soft sheeny, muted shades like taupe, heather and moss, and take it under the lower lashline too. Line the top lashes with a soft matte pencil and soften the edges with a cotton bud. A few coats of thickening mascara (try Lash Venom by DuWop, $24, sephora.com) finish the eyes.”

 

 

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“For your lips use a stain or a cream tint like the ones by Jouer ($20, jouercosmetics.com ), which can also be used as a blush - Amaryllis is especially pretty - and smooth into the lips for a barely there flush.”

 

 

**Melissa’s tips if you only have 5 minutes:

“Spray your face with a refreshing mist like Caudalie Beauty Elixir (from $15, sephora.com), which I always use to smooth my skin and freshen my makeup after a long day. Let it dry for a few seconds and then, using a cream tint in a versatile shade like a soft gold or bronze, smooth onto eyelids, cheeks and lips. Lots of mascara for definition and a light colored eyeliner in the lower lashline will open up your eyes. You should be finished in less than 5 minutes but still will sweep your man off of his feet!”




Q: What’s the best and quickest way to get rid of blackheads? I’ve already tried many things; salicylic acid does not do anything for my blackheads or whiteheads.

Woman Looking Into Mirror

A: Blackheads are little annoying things that aren’t the same as typical acne. While salicylic acid can aid in keeping them at bay, it won’t get rid of them on its own. You see, blackheads are caused by excess oil that has clogged a pore. This clog occurs when the built-up oil is unable to come up to the surface of the skin because the pore is misshapen or impaired and dead skin cells blocking the way. When the pore is open, the oil is exposed to oxygen, which reacts and turns it a dark color, resulting in a blackhead.

Here’s our simple recipe for removing blackheads:

  • After cleansing, use a mild scrub or skin exfoliant to remove any dead cells and expose the blackhead. Pat your face dry.
  • Place a slightly warm compress on your face for about 8-12 minutes in order to soften the blackhead, making it easier to remove. Pat your face dry again.
  • Wrap a piece of tissue on the tip of each index finger to avoid slipping, which could tear the skin and cause damage.
  • Gently apply even pressure to both sides of the blackhead by pushing down, then up around the blemish. Think of trying to apply the pressure from “underneath” the blackhead.
  • Attempt this no more than twice— you don’t want to bruise your skin or cause damage to your skin.

 

Allow a couple of days to go by before you attempt to extract again. Between these attempts, try using a clay mask to absorb excess oil. Also, consider visiting a dermatologist, as he or she may be able to prescribe a treatment containing a retinoid to keep pores functioning properly, thus keeping pore blockage to a minimum.

Best of luck.

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