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Your Best Brow

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The perfect eyebrow is the ever elusive unicorn in the beauty industry.

Every woman, from the most natural to the most glam, wants a great brow. The fact that perfect brows are so hard to achieve makes the brow industry upwards of 160 multi-million dollars every year.

My best tip for those with sparse brows is to STOP plucking and waxing for at least a couple months (resist the urge to pluck), to allow for hair to regrow, then have them shaped by a professional. For those with bold and bushy brows, you lucky ladies, please don’t over pluck! Bold brows are in!

If you’ve over plucked as a teenager like I did, and need the extra help to perfect your brows, take a look at the list of products below. Included are some of the best brow products that I personally tested out for months. Also, don’t be afraid to use multiple products to achieve your best brow possible. Every makeup artist I know uses at least 2 brow products on their clients, often to mix and match textures to imitate brow hairs and fullness.

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View the Products:

BROW SCISSORS

Brow scissors are used to trim long brow hair instead of just plucking, they can also be used to trim false lashes. Typically brows are brushed upwards and the longer, more stubborn hairs are trimmed, to make brows uniform.

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Chella Beautiful Eyebrow Tools In Case $45

This beautiful case holds a pair of tweezers, scissors, comb with razor and brow shaping guide. I really love the unique shape and design of the tweezers in this case, plus the razor helps shape stubborn hairs that are hard to remove. [SHOP] [divider] . [/divider]

Real Techniques Brow Set $10

This kit includes all of the tools you need to clean up, fill in, define and shape your brows. I also really like the mini travel case which can be positioned to stand up on its own. [SHOP] [divider] . [/divider]

BROW GELS

Brow Gels are perfect for setting the powder and pencils used in your brows, but not necessary after using brow pomade. If you have thick brows look for clear brow gel, but if you have sparse brows and need an added oomph of color, tinted brow gel is the way to go. [divider] . [/divider]

Amuse Tinted Brow Gel $1

This brow gel is my all-time favorite, and it’s only a dollar! I’ve been using it for a couple months and it still hasn’t dried up. On non-makeup days, I use this gels to keep my sparse brows in place. [SHOP] [divider] . [/divider]

Make-up Designory (MUD) Brow Fix $16

This clear brow gel reminds me a lot of Maybelline’s clear mascara (that I used for years for brows) but better because it doesn’t flake, doesn’t deposit color in the tube and doesn’t dry out as fast. The applicator looks like a mascara wand and the tube is squeezable, making application easy. [SHOP] [divider] . [/divider]

BROW FILLERS

Brow fillers, like fibers and powders, are used in conjunction with brow pencils and gels to give brows dimension. They are especially great for those with very sparse brow hair. Pro Tip: Outline and partially fill in brows with your favorite pencil and use the filler in the middle part of the brow to add volume. [divider] . [/divider]

Wunderbrow Fiber Filler $22

Wunderbrow is known for their long lasting brow gel, but I like this product better because it adds texture for fuller looking brows and it is water-resistant and transfer-proof. It also has Vitamin E, Cocoa Butter and Keratin that helps to create healthy-looking brows. My brows look super full when I use this. [SHOP] [divider] . [/divider]

NYX Build’em Up Brow Powder $8

Available in 8 matte shades, this brow powder takes a while to buildup if you have sparse brows but the ultra-narrow tip allows you to achieve the look of hair strokes. The tip also works great to sharply define the tail of your brows more than the Wunderbrow does. When I want to look super extra I use both brow fillers and set with the amuse brow gel. [SHOP] [divider] . [/divider]

BROW PENCILS

Brow pencils (whether ultra-thin or angled) allow you to mimic brow hairs with quick, short strokes and allow you to outline and define your brows with ease; however, you will burn through them quickly if you have spare brows, for that reason I like to define the outline of my brow with these first and then fill in with powder or fibers. [divider] . [/divider]

Brow Food Ultra Fine Brow Pencil Duo $24

If you like to fill in the front of your brows lighter than the latter half, then you’ll love this pencil. Ultra-fine to define and shape, this pencil is stiff and waxy and helps hold hairs in place as it fills in the sparse areas. I also really appreciate the fact that there are 10 shades available on the 5 pencils. [SHOP] [divider] . [/divider]

Cover Girl Easy Breezy Brow Micro-Fine Fill + Define Brow Pencil $7.99

One of the finest tipped brow products in the drug store, this pencil will mimic real hair strokes easily, just be careful not to twist the product up too far or the tip will break as you apply it. [SHOP] [divider] . [/divider]

Dermelect Revitalite Brow Transformer $26

This brow pencil transforms into different products depending on the angle in which you hold it and the amount of pressure applied. I love to use this pencil to define and fill in my brows because it’s one of the only brow pencils that won’t break no matter how much pressure I use. It’s also Paraben, Sulfate, Phthalate and Fragrance free. [SHOP] [divider] . [/divider]

BROW POMADE

Brow Pomade combines brow gel and rich pigments into one product which typically last all day and evening, eliminating the need for multiple brow products. The trickiest thing about using pomade is that you’ll need an angled brow/eyeliner brush and a spoolie, and lots of practice. I don’t suggest pomades for those who spend 10-15 minutes on their makeup in the morning. [divider] . [/divider]

Osmosis Brow Gel $25

This super creamy brow gel/pomade hybrid will last ALL day plus it comes with its own tiny brush for precision application, but you’ll still need to comb through your brows to disperse the product. I really loved how stiff this pomade dried down because my brows didn’t budge and I had to use eye makeup remover to take off. Perfect for those who sweat a lot or hit the gym after work. [SHOP] [divider] . [/divider]

Plume Science Nourish & Define Brow Pomade $38

This is one of the easiest brow pomades to use because the pomade takes a while to dry, allowing you to work slow and precise. Included in the beautifully packaged box is a VERY easy to use brush and spoolie. It’s also 100% natural, vegan, and free of alcohol, cruelty, fragrance and parabens. [SHOP] [divider] . [/divider]

Hynt Beauty Eye Brow Definer Cream to Powder $22.50

I really liked this brow definer more than I thought I would because I typically don’t like waxy products, but this product applied really effortlessly once I warmed up the cream on my brush. It’s also chock a bock full of really good for you ingredients like Organic Jojoba & Castor Seed Oil which promote healthy skin and hair growth. It’s also vegan, organic, and free of gluten, toxins, parabens, talc, silicones, mineral oil, fragrance and preservatives. [SHOP] [divider] . [/divider]

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Marianne Meissner is a freelance makeup artist who believes all women should look and feel beautiful no matter their size and who also has an unquenchable thirst for travel, finding beauty and inspiration in all cultures.

Beauty

Skincare Routine

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Skincare Routine

Understanding your skin type is the first thing you should do before choosing a skincare routine.

Whether you are looking to hydrate your skin or for an anti-aging routine here are some of our favorites…

Skincare Routine

Sunday Riley, Go To Bed With Me Complete Anti-Aging Night Routine SHOP

Skincare Routine

The 3-Step Skincare Routine SHOP

Protect & Perfect Regimen SHOP

FENTY SKIN, ALL FOUR ONE 4-PIECE AM + PM SKINCARE SET SHOP

Dermalogica, Discover Healthy Skin Kit SHOP

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Ageless Style

Ageless Style, Beauty Edition

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Ageless Style, Beauty Edition

Ageless Style, Beauty Edition…

If you have been a follower of our Ageless Style features, you know how important it is for PMM to promote style for all ages. We reached out to our team of ageless editorial experts for their personal favorites that they use daily to keep their ageless style…

Masktini Night Ranger Overnight Renewal Mask

Masktini Night Ranger Overnight Renewal Mask

We LOVE the citrus-vanilla scent and texture of Masktini! This sleep therapy mask contains natural lime pearl acids to restore your skin’s smoothest texture, nurturing papaya enzymes to soothe inflammation, and hyaluronic acid to plump away fine lines—plus retinol to encourage healthy cellular renewal. SHOP

Caire Beauty DEFIANCE SCIENCE GLOWMAKER DUO: SERUM + MASK

Caire Beauty DEFIANCE SCIENCE GLOWMAKER DUO: Serum + Mask

This vegan and plant-inspired beauty duo are designed specifically for women over 40 who are experiencing menopause-affected skin… and in our opinion is a MUST try! The Theorem Serum Boost is used twice daily and you will notice immediate results as the serum absorbs quickly into your skin. The Triple Lift Molecule Mask, used twice weekly, further enhances the experience with their proprietary hydration-boosting formula. And a big congratulations to the founders, CEO Lorrie King and CMO Celeste Lee, for being a winner of the 2021 Pharrell William’s Black Ambition Prize! SHOP

Clarins Lotus Face Treatment Oil

Clarins Lotus Face Treatment Oil

Clarins’ exclusive blend of rosewood, geranium and lotus extracts purify, tighten pores, and refine the skin texture. Hazelnut oil softens, soothes, and seals in moisture to prevent fine lines.  SHOP

Juice Beauty's STEM CELLULAR™ Anti-Wrinkle Moisturizer

Juice Beauty’s STEM CELLULAR™ Anti-Wrinkle Moisturizer

Luxurious hydrating moisturizer with a proprietary blend of fruit stem cells and Vitamin C infused into a resveratrol-rich grape formula to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Made With Certified Organic Ingredients. SHOP

Smooth Out Recovery Serum

Smooth Out Recovery Serum

A new beauty company, SeeMe Beauty is specifically for ’80s girls who came of age during this totally awesome decade!

Smooth Out Recovery Serum with deeply hydrating hyaluronic acid and exclusive SeeMe Complex™ is a unique formula packed with powerhouse ingredients to nourish and restore vitality to estrogen-depleted skin. SHOP

SiO SuperLift Pack

SiO SuperLift Pack

Made of medical-grade silicone, SiO patches comfortably hug your skin, gently compressing it to stay flat and smooth. The doctor-recommended patches intensify hydration and support the skin’s ability to retain moisture, minimizing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. See results in just a few hours!  SHOP

The Better Skin Company Klayzyme Mask

The Better Skin Company Klayzyme Mask

Ready for a skin detox? The Klayzyme Mask is a mineral-rich clay + enzyme mask for all skin types. Kaolin & Bentonite Clays purify and clarify the skin’s appearance, while pore-refining Papaya & Pineapple Enzymes help remove dead skin cells and support healthy turnover for radiant skin. SHOP

ISA LAZO Body Oil

ISA LAZO Body Oil

Sometimes you just need deep, luxurious hydration in a body oil that is not heavy. ISA LAZO offers this indulgent option with moisturizing properties of jasmine and primrose along with the energizing essence of grapefruit seed oil… divine! SHOP

bioClarity SunFilter SPF 30 Mineral Face Sunscreen

bioClarity SunFilter SPF 30 Mineral Face Sunscreen

Protect your face from harmful UV rays, blue light, and environmental stressors all year long with this non-nano 100% mineral zinc oxide sunscreen formulated with ingredients designed specifically for your face to give you lasting hydration. SHOP

Neutrogena Deep Clean Glycerin Face Scrub

Neutrogena Deep Clean Glycerin Face Scrub

This exfoliating facial cleanser cleans deep and helps leave skin feeling refreshed and exhilarated. Dermatologist-tested, the light gel formula lathers into a tingly, bubbly foam that washes away dirt, oil, and bacteria and removes surface makeup with gentle exfoliators that work to sweep away dead skin.  SHOP

SeroVital hgh Dietary Supplement

NeutrogSeroVital hgh Dietary Supplement

After age 25, our hGH levels begin to drop dramatically, and this is when we really start to feel the effects of aging. SeroVital is the revolutionary formula that encourages your body to naturally produce human growth hormone at more youthful levels. SHOP

Neutrogena Hydro Boost with Hyaluronic Acid Hydrating Facial Serum

Neutrogena Hydro Boost with Hyaluronic Acid Hydrating Facial Serum

Addressing dryness to deliver hydration, this facial serum formula contains hyaluronic acid, a hydrator found naturally in the skin, attracts moisture and locks it in. The unique hydrating face serum formula helps you achieve a fully hydrated complexion that stays smooth and supple and glows from within. SHOP

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Plus Size Guide to All-Natural Deodorant

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Plus Size Guide to All-Natural Deodorant-v2

Have you been wondering what the hype is about all-natural deodorant?

Have you tried an aluminum-free natural deodorant but gave up after a week or two because you couldn’t get over the smell?

Girl, me too.

I have been working on this article for YEARS! I have tried to switch to all-natural, aluminum-free deodorant four different times until I was able to officially make the switch. It took me years because I would give up after a month or two convinced there was something wrong with me.  

Each time I would make the switch I would wonder: why do I smell so bad?

Every Youtube video I watched said that “pit detox” (which is the natural response to switching from an aluminum-based deodorant to a natural one) would only take a couple of weeks.

Pit detox is the process of detoxifying the body from all the buildup of years of antiperspirant use. Antiperspirant blocks your pores and is designed to reduce sweating. 

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If you’ve used extra-strength antiperspirant like I did, for decades (I’m in my late thirties), the detox process could take up to six months as it did with me.

During the detox phase, you will actually sweat more than had you never used antiperspirant and will continue to over-produce sweat until your body reaches an equilibrium. 

Why did I give up after a month or two early on?

Well, in all honesty, I stunk and I sweat so much that I was embarrassed.

Since puberty, I have used an antiperspirant from Teen Spirit to clinical strength options and the idea of sweating in my plus size body made me super self-conscience.

Why did I smell so much?

Well, bacteria is what causes us to smell and bacteria love warm, moist, dark places to gather and my sweaty pits were their perfect home.

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Was I as smelly as I thought I was? My husband says no and none of my coworkers complained but from never sweating to now all of a sudden having a soaked underarm was a serious shock. 

I foolishly tried to pit detox for the first time in the summer right before a family camping trip where I figured smelling would be a rite of passage, boy was I miserable. Each and every time I made the switch and started to immediately pit detox I would get a heat rash. One time it was so bad I even blistered. Imagine going from perfumed and never sweating because the chemicals did their job and kept me dry to sweaty, self-conscious, rashy, and blistered. What made things more frustrating was as soon as I went back to my antiperspirant the rash went away, the moisture left and I felt “normal again”. 

I tried a couple of times again and as soon as the rash would reappear I would stop.

It wasn’t until COVID and I started to work from home that I was able to finally pit detox and make the permanent switch. I think the only reason I was able to finally persevere through the six months it took me to transition is because I stopped interacting with the outside world. My cats and my husband didn’t complain about the “smell” I thought everyone could smell and so I stuck to it. 

Now you might be wondering “why is this so important to you?”

“Why did you want to make the switch so badly that you’d put yourself through hell four separate times just to use aluminum-free deodorant?”

Well, conventional deodorants include aluminum which has been linked to cancer and Alzheimer’s disease. It has Phthalates and Parabens which are endocrine disruptors and can cause hormone imbalance. It’s also got Formaldehyde (a known carcinogen) and I wanted to eliminate that from my routine. The armpit is so close to breast tissue, and with two grandmothers who had breast cancer, I needed the peace of mind natural deodorant could bring. 

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After 6 months of trial and error, hundreds of dollars spent, and endless hours on the internet researching products, I believe I’ve got a great recipe. 

I want to give you all the knowledge I’ve gained so that if you want to switch over to an all-natural deodorant you can as easily as possible. 

I tried different kinds of deodorant: alcohol-based, magnesium-based, baking soda-free, baking soda based, powder, gel, roll on, paste, and stick formula. I also tried diaper rash crème, hydrocortisone cream, Monistat, baby powder, and dry shampoo on my armpits to help with the rash.

 In all the products I’ve tried here are some of my favorites and a few runner ups:

Arm & Hammer Essentials Natural Deodorant

Arm and Hammer Essentials inRosemary Lavender $9.58 for 2pk

The number one spot goes to the least expensive option. I found this on accident doing some Amazon shopping, bought it on a whim, and then bought 8 backups just in case they decide to stop making it. I like that the scent disappears but still masks body odor. SHOP

2-Desert Essence Spring Fresh Deodorant

Desert Essence Spring Fresh Deodorant  $6.25

I really love how smooth this glides on and how soothed my underarms feel due to the witch hazel, aloe, and glycerin in the formula. This doesn’t pill up at the end of the day and months later the applicator is as fresh as when I bought it.  SHOP

Humble Original Formula in  Palo Santo & Frankincense

Humble Original Formula in Palo Santo & Frankincense  $9.99

They actually have 13 scents but I’ve only tried the Palo Santo scent. I love all things Palo Santo so I didn’t mind the earthiness of the scent as it wore throughout the day. This formula uses baking soda and Beeswax so if your sensitive to baking soda or want to use vegan products, you should skip it.

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Native Deodorant

Native Deodorant  $12

Native definitely lives up to the hype and now has plastic-free containers. They also have really great scents (12+) if you love a scented deodorant that lasts all day. Plus, they offer a discount if you build your own pack and buy three at one time.  SHOP

5-JK Naturals Natural Roll On Deodorant in Peppermint + Patchouli

JK Naturals Natural Roll-On Deodorant in Peppermint + Patchouli   $19.99

This formula, completely different from all the rest, is a roll-on and has very limited ingredients. In fact, the reason I loved this formula so much was that the peppermint added a really lovely cooling sensation that felt great on warm skin. I found that a thin layer, almost like an oxidized film, would develop upon use so I don’t wear this when I am wearing a tank top. I love throwing it in my bag for touchups during the day.  SHOP

6-Nala Free From Deodorant

Nala Free From Deodorant $24-29

This formula has both baking soda and magnesium hydroxide which I found work really well for my body. Since using the brand, I discovered that they offer personalized deodorant and recommend products based on your specific needs. If you don’t want baking soda because you have sensitive skin, they have that option. The only downside is it’s pretty pricey but the company is run by a mother-daughter team and they work really hard at providing high-quality ingredients.  SHOP

Life Savers during pit detox: 

7-Cleo & Coco Dry Shampoo + Body Powder

Cleo & Coco Dry Shampoo + Body Powder $16

I found this powder on my final attempt to switch over and it saved me! I powdered under my breasts, in my armpits, and in my cleavage when temps got really high and it was what finally helped my heat rashes. Last summer my heat rash got so bad it blistered because I was wearing tank tops due to the heat and nothing would help with the inflammation. At the height of the summer, I was applying this twice a day. I recommend this powder over baby powder because it is talc-free.  SHOP

8-Monistat Care Chafing Relief Powder Gel | Anti Chafe Protection

Monistat Care Chafing Relief Powder Gel®  $5.94

Monistat Care Chafing Relief Powder Gel® works well for chafing in your armpits, inner thighs, and breasts and I found it really helpful with the rubbing when I needed it. I preferred this over diaper rash cream (which is super-messy) when I needed an added layer on my delicate skin. Since it’s clear, it doesn’t stain anything and is undetectable. 

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Here are some tips I found really help:

  1. Exfoliate your underarms in the shower with either a sugar scrub or a natural hairbrush. Sloughing off dead skin cells helps reduce the smell and helps wash off the residue from deodorants (I found natural deodorant harder to get off than normal antiperspirant). 
  2. Keep a backup in your purse or backpack and reapply mid-day when you’re feeling stinky.
  3. Try not to shave your armpits as often in the beginning or if you have a heat rash, shaving can irritate your sensitive skin. 
  4. If it’s hot and you’re sweating more than normal, skip the tank tops and wear natural fabrics like cotton or linen as that will help absorb the moisture and will keep your upper arm away from the lower underarm and prevent chafing and rubbing. 
  5. Stay away from spray deodorant if you have sensitive skin, heat rash, or have just shaved your armpits. Spray deodorant’s main ingredient is alcohol and will seriously burn your already problematic underarms. Trust me on this, I learned from experience. 

Here are some runners-up that I do like but because of one or two reasons don’t make the top of the list.

9-kopari Aluminum-Free Coconut Deodorant

Kopari Aluminum-Free Coconut Deodorant $14

Available in 6 scents and 1 fragrance-free, I really like this deodorant but only in the winter. I took it on vacation with me in the summer and it melted in the hot car making a mess everywhere. Also, if you’re sensitive to coconut, you should pass.  SHOP

10-TAOS AER Deodorant in PALO SANTO BLOOD ORANGE

TAOS AER Deodorant in PALO SANTO BLOOD ORANGE  $19

I liked this deodorant but I recommend it after detoxing as I didn’t find it kept the moisture at bay enough for my liking. This was the deodorant I took camping my first attempt and it didn’t work well in the heat as the gel like formula can melt and I was in the beginning stages of detox.

Apparently, I don’t mind if my armpits smell like Palo Santo as I keep coming back to that scent. SHOP

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11-Schmidt’s DEODORANT STICK CHARCOAL & MAGNESIUM

Schmidt’s  DEODORANT STICK CHARCOAL & MAGNESIUM $9.99

Schmidt’s deodorant reminds me the most of a traditional deodorant in its shape and application but it didn’t make the top of the list because it dries down fast and becomes rock hard. I tried about 4 different scents to see how they work along with all the other deodorants in my stockpile, so for a normal person, I think you could get through a stick before it gets too hard. I like their line; I appreciate that they have a sensitive skin formula and glass jar version.  SHOP

12-Cleo & Coco Charcoal Deodorant

Cleo & Coco Charcoal Deodorant $18

I think this deodorant does a good job as a deodorant and at keeping moisture at bay but it makes a mess on the packaging and it balls up in the underarm. If you don’t mind deodorant that is a little messy, you won’t mind this one but both of mine have deodorant caked in the screw tops.  SHOP

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How to Decode the Lingo on Skincare and Beauty Products

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How to Decode the Lingo on Skincare and Beauty Products

By Guest Contributor, David Petrillo

What is merely marketing “Hype” when it comes to beauty products?

Each season, a new crop of beauty trends, buzzwords, and marketing terms arise and consumers are left to try to decode what actually works and what is jargon.

Let’s demystify what these words actually mean…

Patented Technology

This is a marketing term used to provide, sometimes falsely, a sense that the consumer is buying something that is highly innovative. But patents aren’t necessarily a surefire sign that something is groundbreaking. Patents are sometimes authorized based on a technical change rather than a scientific breakthrough meaning new combinations of ingredients or methods of production can be promoted as being “patented technology.” What consumers really want to do is identify what their skin needs and buy products with ingredients that are proven to effectively improve the skin in that area.

Maximum strength

This is a term used often by skin cleansers and moisturizers. But this is a relative term, and consumers don’t exactly know what the maximum strength entails or how the product benefits their skin more than the competition.

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Clinical strength

From painkillers to hydrating serums, companies love to highlight how their products are “clinical strength.” In these cases, healthy skepticism is, well, healthy. In many cases, a product claiming clinical strength could have been tested by the doctors developing the products, and the term can also be relative. Remember, anything that really is maximum strength or clinical strength is often regulated to a prescription.

FDA Cleared

The FDA has different protocols for skincare products that make cosmetic claims as opposed to those that make more medical claims, such as promising to increase the production of collagen in the skin. Since that is a body function, the FDA treats those differently than normal skincare products. However, the FDA just stipulates that the product being sold is safe to use in the manner in which it is directed to be used. FDA approval is not a credential that shows the superiority of results.

Hydrating

Products and consumers often use hydrating and moisturizing interchangeably, but this is inaccurate. If you want to hydrate your skin, this means you have skin that has become dull and possibly dry — you need a humectant such as hyaluronic acid or glycerin to draw water to the cells. If you need to moisturize your skin, you need a moisturizer that seals water in to prevent water loss. Today there are a variety of moisturizers, especially gel moisturizers, that have components that are both moisturizing and hydrating. These are good, but your choice of product depends on the individual condition of your skin. If you have extremely dry or dull skin, you may need one product that performs one function very well, rather than a jack of all trades.

Glass skin

Glass skin is a buzzword that has emerged in recent years to describe the effect of Korean beauty products, which make the skin look hydrated, luminous, and smooth. Usually, because all those adjectives entail different steps in a beauty routine, one needs several products to achieve this look, including an exfoliator, a serum, and a humectant. But more and more, single products are claiming to bring about this effect — while they may fit well into a beauty routine, one product will have a difficult time hydrating the skin while also brightening it and exfoliating it to give it a smoother and even texture. [divider] . [/divider]

David Petrillo graduated in 2007 with a degree in Chemistry from Missouri University prior to working as a researcher in the cosmetics industry. His experiences in the lab led him to found his own company, Perfect Image, with a vision of making medical-grade peels and other cosmetic products more affordable. Visit online at perfectimage.com

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Photo by Sunny Ng on Unsplash

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Quick & Easy DIY Brow Hacks

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Wink Brow Bar Founder Umbreen Sheikh, CEO Shares Her Quick & Easy DIY Brow Hacks…

As the daughter of a London salon owner, I’ve known since I was a young girl that brows are an integral part of a woman’s head to toe beauty look. In fact, in my opinion, brows are every bit as important as the hair on our heads. With great brows, I’m convinced women – all women, everywhere – have more confidence, and look and feel on top of their games. In short, my Wink Brow Bar brand is about #embrowerment for all.

But here’s the thing: embrowered / empowered women like us are insanely busy. And that means we can’t always carve the time out of our packed schedules to have our brows professionally groomed. While it’s actually really relaxing to pop by a beauty establishment like Wink for a glass of champagne and a bit of much-needed “me time,” I completely understand that’s not always an option.

That’s why I want to walk you through a little DIY brow magic, utilizing all the tips and tricks my experts use every day at Wink. Shortcuts, hacks – whatever you want to call them – this insider intel will whip your brows into pro shape in no time.

HACK ONE: Determine your face shape and best brow look

Before you do anything else, it’s crucial that you figure-out the most flattering brow look for your face shape. Although it may not seem like it, trust me, every single pair of brows is unique. What works for you may not be flattering on someone else.

While you might be tempted to get this close to your mirror to assess the situation, standing a foot away will actually give you a much better perspective.

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Next, it’s time to determine your basic face shape. Although a quick Google search yields several different options, these are pretty much the core five shapes:

  • Heart Shape: Your chin is pointed, and your forehead is the widest part of your face. Best Brow Look: A slightly rounded arch. A low arch will create a more natural look, and a higher arch will elongate a shorter face.
  • Oval Shape: Your face is balanced, with very little width difference between your forehead and chin. Best Brow Look: A soft, angled arch that shoots straight up, then gently curves down.
  • Rectangle (also known as Oblong) Shape: Your face is longer than it is wide. Best Brow Look: A soft arch, with a wide distance between the brows. Be sure they don’t exceed the inner corner of the eye.
  • Square Shape: Your face is basically as wide as it is long, and your jaw is slightly angled. Best Brow Look: Angular, with a lifted arch and lengthened “tail,” which helps balance the face.
  • Round Shape: Your cheekbones are the widest part of your face and your chin is curved. Best Brow Look: Definitely not round! Go arch-y. Adding a defined arch instantly gives a lifted, more elongated look, which can be really beautiful.

One more brow-look tip: Women with close-set eyes may want to “start” their brows a fraction of an inch away from the bridge of the nose. This will widen the eye area and lend balance to the face. To do this, vertically line up a pencil from the base of your nose to the inner corner of your eye, and lightly tweeze as needed.

HACK TWO: Clean up your act

There’s a right way and a wrong way to clean your brows and prep them for pencils, powders or pomades. Think gentle, gentle, gentle.

Opt for an oil-based cleanser, which is kinder to brows and less likely to dislodge individual hairs than traditional soap-based formulas. Either use a Q-Tip or your middle finger to apply it, and gently swipe cleanser left and right, using light, circular motions.

In a pinch, a makeup wipe will work. But it isn’t ideal, and I want you to learn “brow best practices.” Get into the habit of carefully and gently cleansing, and your brows will thank you by staying full and lush.

HACK THREE: Pick the right shade + pencil it in

I’ll just be upfront about this: “newbies” should stick to pencils for shading and filling. Only when you really master basic skills should you “graduate” to a powder or colored pomade.

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Why do I feel so strongly about this? Because pencils, like our brand new Embrowerment Pencil, simply offer the most control. They’re basically fool-proof, because they make it so easy to create hairlike strokes. And if they have a brush or “spoolie” on one end to help blend product and tame hairs, as Embrowerment does, it’s the best of both worlds.

In contrast, in untrained hands, powder can go all over the place. Colored pomades can also “land” where you don’t want them to, necessitating a clean-up.

If you’re unsure which shade of pencil to buy, simply match it to your hair roots, which are typically one shade lighter than your brows. This ensures a naturally flattering effect. Most women want their brows to add definition to their face, and not “read” as harsh or aggressive. Matching your brows to your roots achieves that. However, there’s one exception to this rule. If you’re blonde, go a shade darker than your roots. Otherwise, you’ll look washed-out, and that’s not optimal for embrowered women.

HACK FOUR: Do double-duty, and beef-up your lashes at the same time

What’s even better than well-groomed, face-flattering brows? Thick, lush lashes right below them! If yours are naturally on the skimpy side, consider using some type of growth product. Because we don’t yet know the long-term effects of lash-growth formulas containing prostaglandins, I typically urge Wink clients to steer clear. Our new Nourishing Lash Fortifier + Keratin contains no prostaglandins, but instead relies on keratin to nourish root structure, and promote stronger, healthier, glossier lashes.

HACK FIVE: “Cheat” with concealer

Even in a jam-packed life, some days are just busier than others. If you’ve got a lot going on, you may not want to carve-out 15 minutes to do a proper brow-grooming session. Still, you should definitely do something, even if it’s only a quick brushing with your trusty spoolie. Stroke up and over, then anchor your arches with clear mascara.

And here’s how to handle any “stragglers” that pop up: dab on a tiny bit of concealer. Whatever you do, resist the urge to grab your tweezers and start yanking. When you’re in a rush, bad brow things can happen. Concealer is just the ticket for hiding unruly hairs until you have more time to deal with them.

Just promise me that you’ll make the time later to really treat yourself to a proper brow grooming session, okay? You, your brows and your head-to-toe beauty look deserve it.

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About Umbreen Sheikh, Founder and CEO, Wink Brow Bar

The #bossladyofbrows, London-born / New York-based Umbreen Sheikh is on a mission to embrower every woman she comes in contact with. A second-generation cosmetologist, Umbreen learned the ancient technique of threading from her mother, a salon owner. After obtaining a degree in Biomedical Sciences from University at King’s College London, Umbreen relocated to New York City with her husband and embarked on entrepreneurship. She now owns four Wink Brow Bar locations in Manhattan, Brooklyn and London and is rapidly expanding her Wink-branded product range.

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Beauty

Skin Care 101 By Hannah Moses

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Skin disorders are very common, and a nuisance, but they are no less painful and embarrassing for those who suffer from them.

Whether you have a t-zone prone to breakouts, a dry, itchy patches of eczema, there are solutions to lessen the severity of these conditions and even prevent them from happening in the first place.

With the skin being the largest organ on your body, you can’t afford to skimp on skin care.

No matter the quality of your skin, a regular skin regime is essential to prevent premature aging, skin cancer, scarring, and more. While cleaning and moisturizing are key factors to skin care, there are many others that will impact your skin.

Below are a few common skin disorders, tips on how to improve skin care, and things to avoid using on your skin:

Common Skin Disorders

Acne:

  • The occurrence of inflamed or infected sebaceous glands in the skin; in particular, a condition characterized by red pimples on the face, prevalent chiefly among teenagers.
  • Impacts up to 50 million Americans annually
  • 85% of people between 12 and 24 have at least minor acne

Eczema:

  • A medical condition in which patches of skin become rough and inflamed, with blisters that cause itching and bleeding, sometimes resulting from a reaction to irritation but more typically having no obvious external cause.
  • Impacts 28 million Americans
  • Most are diagnosed by the age of 5

Psoriasis:

  • A skin disease marked by red, itchy, scaly patches.
  • Impacts 7.5 million Americans
  • Also causes joint inflammation and arthritis

Rosacea:

  • A condition in which certain facial blood vessels enlarge, giving the cheeks and nose a flushed appearance.
  • Impacts 16 million Americans
  • Prevalent in people with fair skin, blonde hair, and blue eyes

Skin Cancer:

  • The abnormal growth of skins cells most often develops on skin exposed to the sun. There are 3 major types: basal cell carcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma, and melanoma.
  • Most common type of cancer in the U.S.
  • One person dies of melanoma every hour
  • 90% of skin aging is due to the sun

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How to Improve:

Use natural skin care products:

  • Avoids irritation and is gentler on skin
  • Less chemicals on your skin and in pollutants

Look at your water type:

  • Soft water- does not remove soap effectively
  • Hard water- does not allow washes to easily lather

Drink green tea:

  • Has anti-inflammatory properties and reduces collagen breakdown

Watch dairy intake:

  • Increases the risk for acne

Avoid poor air quality like smoke and pollutants:

  • Reduces dehydration in the skin and slows down aging

Use precaution with sun exposure inside:

  • Wear a daily moisturizer with SPF

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Things to avoid:

  • Over-washing your face
  • 30+ SPF- sunscreen with an SPF less than 30
  • Not receiving a full night’s rest
  • Sugary foods and drinks which increases breakouts and acne
  • Harsh chemicals in products such as sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS), sodium lauryl ether sulfate (SLES), and ammonium lauryl sulfate (ALS)

The importance of a skin care routine is clear through the information provided above. Not only will it prevent and avoid skin irritations and disorders, having clear skin can help boost your confidence.

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By Hannah Moses a contributing author for Bold Expressions, Inc.

Hannah Moses is a small-town Mississippi girl, exploring her new city in Memphis, TN. She is a digital marketer who graduated from The University of Mississippi, so her hello greeting sounds more like “Hotty Toddy!” She enjoys weekend trips, wine tastings, and concerts in the city.

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