Thursday, December 4, 2008

Fit For Life Update...

So, I feel I have given 'Fit For Life' by Harvey and Marilyn Diamond a fair chance and am ready to report my results. To keep it short, I liked how it incorporated more fruit into my day, and I will keep the habit of eating only fruit in the morning as I enjoy it and it makes me feel good. That being said, this is the only part of the 'diet' I will keep. It is, unfortunately, a diet, not a 'way of life' as it claims to be. There are too many 'food combining' rules that are, well, a pain in the ass to follow. Who has time for that? And if you don't combine your food properly, then you have to wait sometimes hours before you can eat again. I'm already hungry just writing this. I am not trying to lose weight (well, maybe that last 5 pounds of baby weight) I really just want to enjoy wellness and glowing skin, shiny hair, and tons of energy. I'd like to be a little less grey under the eyes. Fit For Life just makes it too complicated, and I can't accept that eating well has to be that complicated. Somebody must have some love for this method though, there are 117 five-star reviews of the book on, and it has been in print for 21 years now. I have no doubt that this diet will result in weight loss, if that's what you're looking for.

I've since sent my copy off (with a bunch of other stuff) to a local charity shop, hopefully someone else will give it good home. Someone with more time and determination than me.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

A really great eyebrow tip

A while back I found a fabulous eyebrow pencil, the colour was perfect for me and the consistency was great. Then I got it home and remembered why I don't usually like eyebrow pencils. They tend to make such a heavy line and most of the time give brows that look of being tattooed on. Yes, you can blend them out with a spooly (mascara wand-type brush) but often by the time you've blended enough, the skin around your brows is red, you've stirred up a bunch of flakes of dry skin in your eyebrows, and some of your makeup has been scratched off. This is worst-case scenario, of course, but I've seen it happen many times. Brow powder isn't much better. Although it's more subtle and makes a softer line (and it's easier to use) it can look really dry and even kind of dusty on the skin. It's also less long-lasting and less precise.

So here's my solution: Apply your eyebrow pencil with an eyebrow brush. Just sharpen that pencil and scrape the side of the 'lead' onto your brush. This way, when you apply, you get the control and ease of using a brush, along with the softer line of a brush. You also get a more natural look because the emollients in the pencil, and your line will be more precise and long-lasting. Hurray!

Friday, November 14, 2008

How to avoid stretch marks during pregnancy

Having worked with models who gain 50 lbs with their pregnancies and 3 months later are back to doing bathing suit shoots, I had a few tricks up my sleeve to avoid stretch marks during my pregnancy. Their advice worked, and so I pass on their wisdom to you:

1. Get in your best shape ever before you get pregnant so that your skin can accommodate the weight gain. Also, if you're at a healthy weight you'll have more chance of conceiving.

2. Don't gain more than the recommended 25-35 pounds, not good for you or baby. I gained 30 and it was a cinch to lose and I didn't diet (another reason breastfeeding is fabulous).

3. Drink lots of water, eat lots of fruits and veggies to stay hydrated.

4. Eat lots of good fats, very important for skin's elasticity.

5. Keep moving, long walks are great.

6. 'You must put oil! Start now! We only have one skin!' This is according to my Brazilian-model friend who has 3 children and looks disgustingly fabulous. I had just found out I was pregnant, so nowhere near beginning to show in the tummy, but apparently that's the time to start caring for the skin. The oil she recommended was sweet almond oil (easily found in pharmacies) and I applied it at least 5 times a day to my belly, hips, boobs, and thighs, as per her instructions.

7. A couple of other products that were recommended to me that I liked were Clarins Tonic Oil (a product French women swear by) and Mustela 9 Months Stretch Mark Cream. I didn't use them as often as the sweet almond oil though, I preferred to use something more natural since I was applying so often.

And there you have it. Though I must mention that even if I did get a belly full of stretch marks, gain 100 pounds, ruin my vagina, or any other things a first-time Mom worries about, it would still have truly been worth it. Of course you don't realize that until after your baby is born. When it's your first pregnancy life's still all about you and your worries about yourself, and when baby comes along things change so drastically. Enjoy your solitude, the anticipation, and take good care of yourself. Enjoy your pregnancy.

Monday, November 3, 2008

The Slantboard..

I had heard about this before, I forget where, but supposedly if you hang upside down and reverse the blood flow in your body, it has an anti-aging effect. Eva Mendes is apparently a huge fan:

Seems to be working very well for her, it definitely makes my list of things to try.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

A product I love (I have many, so more to come!)

Now that winter is fast approaching, soon we will not only be continuously subjected to Christmas music wherever we go, but our lips and cuticles may become cracked and dry. I don't know which is worse. Just kidding, it's the Christmas music for of course, because the lips and cuticles we can actually do something about.

One of my favourite cheap beauty products is 100% lanolin, readily found in pharmacies as 'nipple ointment' for breastfeeding moms. It's all-natural, has no scent or taste, and is super, super thick and soothing. A little goes a very long way, and one tube lasts me almost a year. Try it as a night treatment and you will notice a difference in the morning, even after only one use. As a makeup artist, it's been pretty much my duty to try every lip balm and cuticle cream out there and though I'd love to be able to recommend something more fancy-shmancy, this is really the best, and it will only set you back about ten bucks.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Madonna's Anti-aging plan?

Read on!

Who knows how much of it is actually true, but in my opinion, it doesn't seem to be working so well for her. Sure she's still great, and she's in absolutely fantastic shape, but there's nothing luscious and juicy about her anymore. There is definitely something to be said for having some body fat as one gets older.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

My morning banana...

Japan is going crazy for a new diet:

Speaking of fruit for breakfast, this summer I found a copy of 'Fit For Life' at a garage sale (yay garage sales!) for ten cents and started reading it last week. This book was written in 1987 by Harvey and Marilyn Diamond and is still in print today. One of the principles in the book is that we should eat only fresh fruit in the morning, nothing else. Oh, you can eat as much fruit as you want, though it's not exactly a breakfast of champions for those of us who wake up at 5:30 am to a screaming baby. I have been trying it for two days now, and by 10am I am shaky, ready to eat the furniture, and even a little angry. Maybe it's just an adjustment period for my body? I sure hope so. There are eight whole pages of glowing reviews in the front of the book, here are some of my favourite snippets:

"Deserves a Nobel Prize."

"I have lost 20 pounds in 30 days..."

"How could something so simple avoid my reasoning for so long?"

"People comment on how much smaller my gut is and that's in 2 weeks time!"

"I feel like I have been buried under concrete in a cave all my life, and finally I was rescued..."

Pretty compelling stuff. I will be sure to post an update when I feel I've given Fit For Life a fair chance to work it's magic...

Monday, October 20, 2008

40 Is The New 25?

When I was a small child, my mom worked as an Avon lady. Every month she'd receive her order, huge boxes filled with glamorously-packaged potions and concoctions of every kind, all promising to make their user gorgeous, radiant, youthful and everything else you can think of . There were always lots of samples for me to play with, teeny tiny lipsticks and little envelopes filled with magic creams and exotically-perfumed towelettes. I couldn't wait for those boxes to arrive. For me, this was heaven, so much so that it led to a career as a makeup artist and a lifelong passion for everything related to the beauty industry. I am always on the hunt for new (and often outlandish) products or techniques that I can test on myself and gossip to my girlfriends about. I also have very strong interests in alternative therapies, and the importance of nutrition and exercising. Of course exercise is one of the fountains of youth, but I still have a lot of 'hope in a jar', whether it be a some crazy-exclusive expensive eye cream imported from some obscure, unheard of place or just a cheap blush from the drugstore. I want to try it all.

'Forty is the new twenty-five' is a phrase I have been hearing a lot these days, and it makes me giggle every time I think about it because it makes me only twenty years old. It makes me feel a kind of silly optimism, and everyone I tell it to seems to have the same reaction. Would I want to be twenty years old again? Well...just the thought sends my brain flashing back to waitressing hell, crappy boyfriends, and eating Ramen noodles in my cramped apartment that I furnished with discarded items I found on the street, Would I like to look and feel twenty-five by the time I'm forty? You betcha.