Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Aloe Vera Hair Rinse

My dear friend Sarika--whose skin and hair glows like none other--told me she swears by applying aloe vera on her hair. If I were allowed to share a picture of her, I would, but suffice to say if she ever gives me a beauty tip...I will take it.

Last weekend I trekked off to my local Trader Joe's and bought a huge tub of aloe vera juice (I figure if it's safe enough to consume, it's safe enough to rinse with) for only $7.99!

The consistency and color of the juice is just like water, which makes it hard to rinse with-you can't just apply it to your hair like conditioner. I ended up putting it in a spray bottle so that I could evenly spritz the juice throughout my hair.

I did a little reading around before trying this and found A LOT about the alleged benefits of applying aloe vera on your hair and scalp. Apparently, it's great for maintaining a healthy scalp--makes sense since your scalp is essentially skin and aloe vera is good for your skin--and can even help with dandruff since it breaks down dead cells. What's more, it makes a great conditioner since it moisturizes your hair and gives it shine and strength.

My Thoughts
So far, I've rinsed my hair with aloe vera twice. I think its too soon to expect any result in terms of scalp condition or any drastic results in my hair, but I do feel that my hair is smoother and less frizzy. Will I be using this rinse again? Absolutely--I can't wait to see the longterm benefits and the difference in use actual aloe vera gel versus the juice.

Basic Sugar Scrub

Making a body scrub has never been so easy. This is probably the most basic scrub and the easiest to make. I can't speak for every kitchen, but the ingredients involved--sugar and extra virgin olive oil--are always stocked in my kitchen.

Olive Oil-Sugar Scrub
Take two parts sugar for one part extra virgin olive oil (2 cups of sugar for every 1 cup of olive oil) and mix in a bowl. Add the sugar in small amounts to make sure it is evenly blended in the olive oil. Store in a jar or airtight container.

How To Use: Use the scrub generously all over your body or on your hands. I found it to be a little too abrasive for my facial skin so I opted against using this as a face scrub, but if you have really dry skin, this just might work for you!

Monday, February 27, 2012

Chia Seeds

I recently started adding chia seeds to my oatmeal after reading about it's alleged health benefits. My dad thought I was crazy, until his beloved Wall Street Journal had an article about the seed's magical qualities.

Now, there's no surprise that health freaks will consume chia seeds for its alleged benefits. But being a beauty-centric blog, my main question is: What can chia seeds do for my hair, skin and nails?

Chia seeds have an extremely high concentration of omega-3's (more than salmon!) and are rich in calcium and protein. But let's focus on the omega-3's. Omega-3 fatty acids are important for scalp health by preventing a dry scalp and dull hair, improves skin quality and slows aging.

I can't speak for how they've helped me out yet since it's only been 2 weeks, but I'll take my chances since they're rich in omega-3's.

Image via Google Images; specifically here.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Monounsaturated-fat Reduces Wrinkles

If you're looking to keep your wrinkles at bay, then start from the inside out. 

The Journal of the American College of Nutrition published a study which showed that people who had higher intakes of butter had more wrinkles than those with high intakes of olive oil. The difference between butter and olive oil is that butter is saturated fat and olive oil is monounsaturated!

Specifically, "overall, [their] finding suggest that subjects with a higher intake of vegetables, olive oil and monounsaturated fat and legumes, but a lower intake of milk/milk products, butter, margarine and sugar products had less skin wrinkling in a sun-exposed site."

Monounsaturated-fat Foods: Almonds, Avocado, Peanut Butter, and Olive Oil

Friday, February 17, 2012

Fragrant Hair

Don't we all dream of fragrant hair that smells fresh, clean and irresistible? 

If you're tired of smelling like your favorite shampoo, then consider this: Spray a paddle brush with one spritz (or two if your fragrance is mild) into the bristles. Brush your hair starting at your roots all the way to the tips of your hair.

If you're using a different fragrance in your hair than you are using on your body, then make sure the scents compliment each other. Let's be real, nobody wants to smell like a combination of apple pie and jasmine.
Image Source: This Is Glamorous, specifically here

Monday, February 13, 2012

What do people find beautiful?

The March 2004 Issue of Evolution & Human Behavior revealed what influences our decision in determining an individuals attractiveness.
Key Points:
  • Physically attractive traits include high degrees of bilateral facial symmetries, such as eyes that are identical in shape and size, and waist-to-hip ratios of 0.7 for women and 0.9 for men.
  • People may see physical attractiveness differently when they know that person's other qualities, usually invisible to strangers
  • The researchers offer this beauty tip: "If you want to enhance your physical attractiveness, become a valuable social partner."
But that's just what one study says. In the end of the day, beauty is in the eye of the beholder. 

Information Source: Here

Friday, February 10, 2012

Ice Cubes For Your Pores

Pores are the tiny openings on our skin that house our hair follicles and oil glands. Many people suffer from enlarged pores (especially around the nose due to the number of oil glands).

Two easy ways to reduce pores:

  1. Rubbing Ice Cubes on the face tightens the pores and increases blood circulation.
  2. Take one egg white and beat it until it is well whipped. Apply a thin layer on your face and wait for it to dry. After dried, wash your face.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Illusion of Longer Legs

According to Allure magazine, to create the illusion of having longer legs, the shade of your pedicure should match your natural skin color--specifically, foot color. According to the magazine, this trick "fools the eye, extending the line of your leg in a subtle but perceptible way."

Information Source: Allure Magazine
Image Source: Pinterest

Monday, February 6, 2012

Mineral Water..the common cure for Wrinkles?

It's been the cardinal rule of beauty that if you drink 8 glasses of water, you'll have flawless skin. I've heard this since I was a wee little five year old and continue to hear this till this day. 

It's been a conflicted statement since some argue that it merely nourishes the outermost layer of your skin and other insist that it eliminates wrinkles and nourishes your skin from inside out.

Recent studies prove that water does help the skin! But more importantly, specific types of water benefit the skin more.

The study was conducted giving half the subjects tap water and the other half mineral water. Before and after pictures were taken. Results showed that women who drank tap water showed a 19% decrease in wrinkles and women who drank mineral water showed a 24% decrease in wrinkles.

Friday, February 3, 2012

Yellow Nails

Yellow nails make a person look unhealthy and/or poorly groomed. Common causes are smoking, regular use of nail polish and sometimes they're scars from cooking in the kitchen.

If you have yellow nails, a great way to make them relatively whiter is to rub a lemon slice under the tips. The acid of the lemon eats away at the stains. Soaking your nails with lemon juice would also suffice! If you're using fresh lemons, make sure to peel the thin filament and that the juices can actually come in contact with your nails!

Another great trick is to use Denture Tablets. Denture tablets are used to whiten and clean dentures and therefore, can do the same for your nails. You just follow the instructions on the denture tablet box (usually involving soaking the tablet in water) and then soak your fingernails in the liquid for a few minutes.

If you're too lazy, busy or just not interested in trying the methods above, here are two products that would lighten yellow nails:

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Anti-Aging Foods

A recent article in Women's Health Magazine listed anti-aging foods:

Watermelon — Contains beta-carotene and lycopene, which increase your protection against UV rays.

Hemp/Fish — The omega-3 fatty acids in hemp and fish help your skin retain moisture.

Pumpkin seeds — Loaded with vitamin E, which is a big skin protector.

Acerola juice — Has 3,000 times more vitamin C than orange juice.

Cucumber — The skin of cucumbers are made of silica, which is the building block of skin. It can help prevent wrinkling.

Citrus zest – Eating one tablespoon of citrus zest a week can reduce your risk of skin cancer by 30%.

Broccoli — Researchers found that skin treated with broccoli-seed extract and then exposed to UV radiation had 38 percent less redness and swelling than untreated skin