How to get a Fresh-Faced-Glow After a Very Busy Week

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#beautyfriday, chinma eke's blog

Hello ladies, welcome to #beautyfriday it’s been awhile, hasn’t it?

This week, we’re talking tips on how to get a fresh-face-glow after a very busy week. We work hard, play hard, but as fun and satisfying as this lifestyle is, it takes its toll on our skin, leaving it dull and lifeless. Fret not. There’s no need to stay home after a long day’s work to look awake and radiant in the morning. You can have it all: a fun night out and a gorgeous, fresh-faced glow.  Here’s how:

Slough it all off

I’m talking about dead skin cells. Those that accumulate on the surface of our skin are old, rough, and so dull! An exfoliant with glycolic acid, will get rid of them all, leaving our skin smoother and brighter. Plus, it allows skincare products to penetrate more deeply into the skin, so they work better and faster!

A vitamin boost

If you’re not using vitamin c, you’re missing out. This powerful antioxidant boosts collagen production and fights the premature signs of aging, like fine lines and wrinkles. Best of all, it has brightening properties that make skin instantly glow!

Fake it

Strobing is all the rage now. That’s great news for us. There is no easier way to brighten up your skin immediately. All you need is a highlighter and a concealer brush (the beauty blender works well too).

Now, all you have to do is place the highlighter on the places where the sun naturally hits your face. That’s the apples of your cheeks, the bridge of your nose, cupid’s bow, chin,  brow bone, the inner corners of your eyes, and the center of your forehead. Now, blend well. Hello, radiant beauty!

Powder up – sparingly!

If you have oily skin, your makeup will melt faster than an ice cream in the middle of the desert without a powder. But powders give your skin a matte finish. So, if a healthy glow is what you’re seeking, you must hold back on them. If you really must, apply a light dusting. But only where – and when – it is absolutely necessary.

How do you achieve that beautiful, fresh faced glow? Share with us.

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Tips to Extend the Life of your Make-up

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Get the most out of your makeup…

While suggesting that you just use only one lipstick, eye shadow and nail polish color is just crazy talk; it is a good idea to try to use only one mascara, foundation, powder and moisturizer at a time.

Once you open and begin using an item, you start reducing the life of the product because of the potential of attracting germs, among other things. Here are more tips to help you extend the life of your makeup.

Proper Makeup Storage

  • Store your makeup in a cool, dry place, not in the bathroom where the room can become hot and humid from showers and baths. Don’t store products where they will be exposed to sunlight, excessive heat or dampness. If there isn’t a cool spot available, you can also store liquid foundations, tinted moisturizers and lipsticks in your refrigerator.

Avoid Contamination

  • Use a brush, spoon or metal spatula for face products. To avoid contamination, apply makeup with brushes or sponges instead of your fingertips. Try to wipe off brushes and rinse sponges after each use. If you prefer using your fingertips (some products blend better that way) be sure your hands are clean.
  • Use disposable mascara wands. Sharpen pencils (lip, eye and brow) before each use.
  • Apply makeup with a clean brush whenever possible. Wipe off applicators after each use to avoid contamination. When using blush, bronzer or eye shadow, wipe the brush before dipping back into the product again.
  • Take a tube of lipstick and dip it in rubbing alcohol for 15 – 30 seconds, then wipe off the top layer of the lipstick.
  • You can also leave lipstick in the freezer overnight to kill bacteria and viruses. Storing lipstick in the refrigerator can also help it stay fresh longer, especially when it’s hot and humid.
  • Use disposable lip-gloss wands for gloss. Use metal spatulas for cream products.
  • If you use multipurpose products or like to dab your lip-gloss or lip creams onto your cheeks, use different application tools or wipe the surface of the product before switching to different areas of the face.
  • Foundation will last longer if you apply it with a sponge instead of with your fingers. If you use your fingers, make sure that they are clean, but you probably should pitch it after 2 – 3 months. Replace if it smells bad, loses consistency, has water on the top, or changes color.
  • If you apply blush on liquid foundations and face creams, the oils will cling to the bristles and transfer to the blush. Be sure to let foundation, tinted moisturizers dry for a couple of minutes before putting on blush. Blot excess oils from the face. Cleanse the blush brush on a regular basis. After applying blush, wipe off the brush with a towel.
  • Disinfect makeup every three weeks using the alcohol and freezing method. Also occasionally scrape off the top layers of powders (foundation, blush, bronzer). Scoop out the top layer of liquid foundation.

Remember to Keep Makeup Tools Clean

Sponges

  • After sponges get too old, they can begin to absorb too much makeup. They can also hold bacteria. The economical packs of sponges are meant to be disposable and last for only two uses (once on each side). Better ones like Beauty Blender last longer and can be cleaned. If you’re using sponges that can be washed, wash once a week and discard after a month.
  • Rinse out the makeup sponge after each use with warm water. Squeeze out excess water. Using a clean cloth, pat the sponge to get rid of excess moisture and let air-dry.
  • Once a week use a mild shampoo and work lather into the sponge with your fingertips. Rinse well to get all of the soap out of the sponge. Wring out the sponge and pat out any excess water. Let air-dry.

Brushes

  • Toss a brush if the bristles start to fray or fall out. After each use, wipe with a paper towel or washcloth and do a thorough cleaning, preferably once a week if you wear makeup daily or at least every two weeks. Use a gentle hair shampoo, antibacterial soap or brush cleaner.
  • Use warm water to rinse the bristles and at an angle so that you don’t ruin the brush by getting water inside the handle.
  • Apply a small amount of the mild shampoo or other cleaning product.
  • Gently lather the brush and then rinse under warm water until the water comes out clear and all makeup has been removed. Be sure to rinse out all of the soap.
  • Gently squeeze the excess water out of the brush.
  • Lay the brush flat on a clean towel to air dry.
  • Store upright in a glass container to air out and with enough room for the bristles so that they don’t get squashed or lose form.
*Article and image source about.com

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Top 10 Tips for Healthy Skin

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What’s best for your skin is an individual thing based on genetics, skin type, special skin issues, age and other factors. But these 10 tips for women of color are musts for healthy skin.

1. Use products for your skin type. It’s important to use products that are formulated for your skin type. A cleanser for oily skin will be too drying for someone who has dry skin. Some products that work on normal skin might irritate delicate, sensitive skin. Using the wrong product can do anything from making the skin look too oily or causing breakouts, to emphasizing fine lines and wrinkles or making makeup application look uneven.

2. Avoid harsh ingredients. Certain ingredients in products like salicylic acid and even some alpha hydroxy acids (fruit acids) can be too harsh for certain skin. Chemicals like synthetic fragrances can cause allergic reactions in the skin of some women and alcohol-based products are very drying to others.

Observe which product ingredients cause skin reactions and check the ingredient label for patterns and possible culprits. So if you know you are allergic or easily irritated by certain ingredients, check the list before using a product.

3. Do patch tests. If you are using at-home kits like microdermabrasion kits, hair removal systems, facial peels and other products that are clinical strength or potentially harmful, always do a patch test on a small inconspicuous area like the inside of the elbow to make sure you are not allergic to the ingredients or that your skin is not too sensitive and can be irritated or damaged by the product.

4. Cleanse the face daily. It’s especially important to cleanse the face at night to get rid of dirt and debris and of course makeup. Avoid abrasive cleansers. Opt for a sensitive formula, especially if you have dry or easily irritated skin.

5. Exfoliate. When dead skin cells accumulate on the skin’s surface, what you’ll end up with is dull-looking skin or skin that is unable to adequately absorb nutrients and nourishing ingredients from skin care products. Remember to regularly exfoliate the face, using gentle exfoliants, avoiding almond or coarse salts, which can actually tear the skin. Don’t use a body scrub on your face. And speaking of the body, be sure to exfoliate the body with scrubs or by dry brushing to avoid dry or ashy skin.

6. Keep Skin Hydrated. Always moisture, even if you have oily skin. Use a moisturizer that is formulated for your skin care needs and for the season (i.e., a lighter moisturizer in the summer, a creamy moisturizer during the winter.)

7. Use sunscreen. The sun can contribute to premature skin aging. While melanin provides protection to darker skin, you can still get skin cancer and often it’s at an advanced stage. Use sunscreen year round.

8. Be mindful of medications. Certain medications contribute to skin problems and others can cause sensitivity to the sun. Be sure to apply sunscreen or avoid the sun when using these drugs. Drugs that cause sun sensitivity are birth control pills, antibiotics, acne medications and some hyperpigmentation treatments.

9. Be careful with professional treatments. Cosmetic surgery and other professional treatments (laser treatments, microdermabrasion, etc) might cause skin discolorations and other problems in skin of color. Make sure that you see a professional that is experienced in treating dark skin.

10. Help your skin take care of itself. Lead a healthy lifestyle, with a nutritious diet, exercise and plenty of rest to help your body and skin continue to rejuvenate itself.

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6 Ways To Get Glowing Skin When Fancy Treatments Isn’t An Option

We all want to glow like a fleet of Victoria’s Secret angels, (or, you know, J.Lo). But since the majority of us don’t have a team of professionals at our disposal, we have to make do with the available. below are six tips to help achieve the glowing skin you’ve desired.

Take a Supplement

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Your mom probably nagged you about taking your vitamins and she was right. A good hair, skin, and nail formula—which includes vitamins, minerals, and amino acids specific to skin health—will improve its overall quality and appearance. Skin products work externally to try to create the desired effect of glowing skin, but while these products may help a bit, the real change takes places from the inside out. A supplement works at an internal level to correct any deficiencies or imbalances.

Drink Green Juice

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Full of minerals, chlorophyll, and antioxidants, fresh green juice is like a powerful multivitamin. The nutrients are absorbed into the bloodstream and reach skin cells quicker thanks to the lack of fiber in the juice. Drinking green juice is the number one skin fix for girls who want clean, clear, glowing skin. It’s a great replacement for afternoon coffee and it will literally transform your skin in a matter of days. It helps oxygenate the skin and stimulates lymphatic drainage so it’s de-puffing too.

Stay away from green juices that are high in fruit (to avoid the extra sugar), and instead looking for ones that are mainly greens with low-sugar additions like lemon and ginger.

Exfoliate and Dry Brush

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Though it’s often skipped in people’s at-home beauty routine, exfoliation is a critical step on the road to glow-dom. I recommend all-over exfoliation in the shower to make skin fresh and bright. Dry brushing is multi-tasking – it’s actually incredible as a cellulite treatment and increases skin’s elasticity, too.
Start at the tops of the feet and brush upwards towards the heart. Spend extra time on areas that tend to be more stagnant, like the inner thigh, and don’t forget to include the backs of the arms and the back. Dry brushing immediately increases circulation, so you will feel warmer when you are done. Try it before you get into the shower for two minutes in the morning, and you will see a difference in your skin quality in days.

Eat more Avocados

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Our skin needs fat in order to stay hydrated and glowing, and avocados supply the skin with healthy fats and phytonutrients to do just that. Avocados are nature’s own moisturizer, rich in healthy fatty acids, which will keep your skin supple, moist and glowing. Add avocado to your salads, or throw half an avocado into your morning smoothie. It provides a rich, creamy texture and you won’t even taste it.

Make a Natural Mask

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In addition to eating avocados, apply an avocado face mask to get the glowing benefits both inside and out. Mash half of a soft avocado with a fork. Stir together one tablespoon of raw honey with two tablespoons of hot water, and add the mixture to the avocado to create a rich mask. Apply to your face (avoiding the eyes), let it do its magic for ten minutes, and enjoy a refreshed face.

Another rejuvenating and anti-aging mask can be made from grape seed oil, rose oil, honey, and ground almonds. The grape seed oil is an awesome antioxidant, while the rose oil will restore that amazing glow we’re all looking for. The honey will hydrate the skin and erase fine lines, while the ground almonds will gently exfoliate. It’s great for anyone who feels their skin looks dull and tired. Combine six teaspoons of grape seed oil, two drops of rose oil, one teaspoon of warmed honey, and five of teaspoons of ground almonds to form a paste. Leave on the skin for 20 minutes, then rinse.

Snack on Cucumber

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There is no glow without hydration. In addition to being low-calorie and delicious to snack on, cucumbers have a high water content. Cucumber is both hydrating and cooling for the body, and staying well hydrated is rule number one for great looking skin. Try snacking on cucumber every chance you get, and for an added dose, look for green juices that contain the ingredient.

Do you have any tried-and-true tricks for getting glowing skin without fancy treatments? Share them below!

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Sugar Scrub and Shea Body Butter for Silky Skin.

Want silky smooth healthy, camera ready skin? Try these proven DIY recipes.

Sugar scrubs are a simple beauty recipe with countless variations, and they can be incredibly moisturising and exfoliating to the skin, followed by a body butter, gives you smooth, silky skin.

If you are new to making your own beauty products (or even if you are a veteran natural beauty alchemist) I highly encourage you to try out these sugar scrub and body butter recipe.

They can be used on face, lips, body or (especially) feet for silky skin. You can add endless ingredients for your desired outcome, and they take under ten minutes to make.

Convinced yet?

Here’s The Basic Recipe:

Sugar scrub
Sugar (white or brown)
Oil- Extra virgin olive oil, or Almond oil, or Coconut oil
Honey (optiional)
Shea butter or Petroleum jelly (optional)
Vitamin E

Use 2 parts sugar (regular white or brown sugar work great) to 1 part oil (almond, olive and coconut are great), honey and shea butter, add 1/2 tsp Vitamin E oil (or the gel from a few capsules), and mix well.

Scrub shouldn’t be too runny or to dry, mix for the right consistency.
Sound simple? It is!

This lasts for up to 2 months (or more) and smell good enough to eat… Actually, they are good enough to eat, but don’t… sugar is bad for your intestines!

To help make your scrub last longer, add Vitamin E as a preservative. 2-3 Vitamin E capsules that have been opened and stirred in are generally enough.

Apply sugar scrub in the bath, using a dry bath glove to gently massage the scrub into the skin.

Rinse off.
(The oil makes the bath slippery, ensure to clean out the bath to prevent an accident.)
Follow with a moisturising body butter, you can also make yours. Here’s the recipe;

Body Butter

Makes 2 1/2 to 3 cups whipped butter.

1 cup organic raw shea butter (solid)
1/2 cup coconut oil (solid)
1/2 cup almond oil (liquid) or 1/2 cup Olive oil

1. Melt shea butter and coconut oil in the top of a double boiler. Remove from heat and let cool for 30 minutes, or whisk both together in a bowl. Mix thoroughly. 

2. Stir in almond oil and essential oils of your choosing.*

3, Place oil mixture in freezer or outside to chill.

4. Wait until oils start to partially solidify then whip until a butter-like consistency is achieved. 

4. Place in clean, glass jar and enjoy! A little goes a long way.

*Not all essential oils are skin friendly or child friendly. Please do your research before adding.

TIPS: PLEASE READ!

1. You can use what ever oils you wish, just make sure you keep the ratio 75% solid to 25% liquid. SO IF YOU ARE ALLERGIC TO ANY OF THE ABOVE LISTED OILS, JUST REPLACE THEM WITH AN OIL THAT YOU ARE NOT ALLERGIC TO. Just make sure you replace a solid for a solid and a liquid for a liquid. 

2. The chilling step is crucial. If you don’t chill it properly, it won’t whip or stay whipped. About 20 minutes in the freezer usually does the trick for this batch. Make sure you scrape down the sides before mixing.

3. Since this recipe does not contain any water, it will not mould. You should keep in a cool place but it does not have to be refrigerated. 

I do not know the exact shelf life but I know it will keep at least a few months, plus. 
The body butter melts as it goes on and gets a little oily but absorbs beautifully, quickly and leaves your skin very soft.

Ever made your own sugar scrub or body butter? What is your favourite combination? Let me know below!

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