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Beauty Tips

Keeping your skin happy and healthy!

Another week has passed and it is time to continue our foray into SKIN! Last week I discussed how to find your skin’s undertones. Knowing whether you have cool, warm or neutral undertones helps determine which foundation/moisture tint will work best with your skin- there is nothing flattering about a cool toned girl wearing a foundation with a yellow base. So follow the tests I laid out and, if you feel the urge to be a rule breaker, eat cheesecake for breakfast.

Now part 2: Keeping your skin happy and healthy!

We are becoming more and more of a health conscious society. Especially when it comes to our cosmetics. Gone are the days when women covered their faces with layer after layer of white lead or face creams loaded with arsenic. I know, it sounds crazy that women used to cover their faces with lead! But it’s true- from the Romans to one of our favs, Queen Elizabeth- lightening one’s complexion with a toxic mixture of egg, powdered eggshells, poppy seeds, white lead, borax and alum was fairly common.

Today we want to know what’s in our products and why. Even if you haven’t done a ton of research, you have a few key-words on your radar of ‘what to avoid.’ I’m going to discuss two of the main offending chemicals and why they should be avoided.

Parabens: Used in foods as well as cosmetics as a preservative. They can be found in shampoos, conditioners, makeup, toothpaste, shaving cream, moisturizers and sunscreens.

Parabens are known to be absorbed by the skin and while some are eliminated through your urinary tract- others are retained in plasma. What is potentially worrisome about this is that parabens have shown up in many breast cancer tumors. While there has not been a direct connection between parabens and health effects- they are worth keeping an eye on.

Phthalates: Used as a plasticizer. They primarily show up in nail polish, synthetic fragrance, hair spray and deodorant.

Links have been made between phthalate blood levels and altered thyroid function, breast cancer, ADHD and decreased motor and mental development. While most of the these studies are observational plasticisers are known to have potentially detrimental effects and thus we should limit our exposure to them.

 

 

Get to know what's on the surface!

Alright my fellow redheads, this is part 1 of a 3 part blog series on skin- Get to know what’s on the surface!  Per popular request, the first post will address your skin’s undertones.

So what are undertones anyways?  Often times we choose our foundation, liquid or powder, based on our skin tone. Be it ivory, beige, medium, tan etc. - we look at the surface of our skin and try to match.  But your skin tone changes with sun exposure, lack thereof, or simply overtime. Today we see many online cosmetics companies, including Redhead Revolution, prompting buyers to choose a foundation based on their  skin’s undertones, but if you don’t know what that is, then it isn’t much help. So here goes, Finding your skin’s undertones 101:

First, your skin’s undertones lie just below the surface of the skin and regardless of whether you skin hasn’t seen the sun in months or you just got a tan- it stays the same.

Second, there are three undertone categories: cool (pink, or bluish undertones); warm (yellow, peachy, golden undertones); neutral (mix of warm and cool).

 

So which are you? Here are a few tests to help you determine which category you fall into.

1.  Look at the veins on your wrist: Are they blue or green? If they are blue or blue-purple, then you most likely have cool undertones. If they are greenish, then you’re warm.  And if you have both blue and green veins then you are neutral.

2. Hold up a piece of silver or platinum jewelry and a piece of gold. Now, regardless of which one you like more, which one looks best against your skin? Girls with cool undertones tend to look better in silver and platinum metals, while warm-toned girls look better in gold.

3. The neutral shade test: think about which neutral shade looks best on you. Does a bright white or black hue flatter you best? Or ivory and brown/tan shades? If it is the former, then you are most likely cool-toned, while the latter means you are warm.

Now that you have discovered your skin’s undertones, you will be better able to choose a foundation/moisture tint that will flatter rather than clash.  Knowing your undertones also help you determine which colors will look better on you- be it clothing or lipstick. But that’s for another post….

Now go be merry whether you be cool, warm or neutral. And above all, be glad you don’t share Liz Lemon’s witch undertones.