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FRIZZ HALOS

10 Apr

Thank you for your suggestions to the Preview! Guess the Upcoming Post. As you guessed, this post is inspired by The Tropics and will be about our crowning glory. So get in the mood, listen to some Tropicália music or these Songza playlists!

New York feels like a sticky concrete tropical cloud forest in the summer and the humidity means that it is impossible to keep hair from flying away  and gathering on top of your head. Now, if we were living in Elizabethan England, our frizz halos would be IN. But today, frizz (like acne and cellulite) is an undesirable look. But outta these three “bad” traits, frizz has the most potential to become cool, right?! There are, like, poems dedicated to it!

Marilyn and her sorta frizz halo in Florida on the “Some Like it Hot” (1959) set

Till the day comes where we embrace our frizz halos, here are two products to glue down the fluff and keep your knickers from getting in a twist when precipitation gets above 0%.

Screen shot of the No Frizz line from Living Proof

Screen shot of the No Frizz line from Living Proof

LIVING PROOF is the Hedy Lamarr of hair products: brainy and (makes you) beautiful. Its nerdy origin story is that it was co-created by biotech scientists at MIT and beauty experts.

Living Proof frizz line is so resistant to humidity you could probably do a synchronized swim routine during a monsoon and not see a hair budge. That may be a stretch, but in all seriousness, the no-frizz Living Proof line will hold your hair down. If that doesn’t sound convincing enough, the Priestess of Hair Janiston herself endorses it.

Although Living Proof smells nice in its own right, EO PURE PERFORMANCE BOTANICAL HAIR CARE in COCONUT & HIBISCUS  hair scrubber and conditioner jazz up the “tropical scent genre” from the more traditional (and expected) formula of coconut and lime.

Duhlicious

The Coconut & Hibiscus scrubber and conditioner  are great for the more “wrecked out by the blow out” manes, but virgin hair will benefit too from its smoothing, softening, rehydrating, fortifying, and conditioning properties that smell like heaven and make your hair light as a featha. Also, EO Everyday Hair Care lines are natural, therapeutic, non-sulfate, botanical, and stuffed with keratin… essentially, very wholesome.

Montane tropical rain forest in northern Vietnam

In conclusion, both EO and Living Proof products are truly fabulous products that do wonders for the health and look of your hair. Living Proof frizz may be better at keeping the hair clouds at bay during a tropical rain storm (or a New York summer), but the EO Coconut & Hibiscus offers a twist on the olfactory sensation we associate with the ‘the tropics’ (like the traditional tropical scent found in Sally Hershberger’s Wavy Spray and the DIY beach hair spray mentioned in an earlier post).

There are a ton of other dynamo products out there that either feel tropically or can kill frizz in literal rainy tropical climates. What do you like and recommend?

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P.S.:

Since we can’t write about the tropics without mentioning ways to protect it, here are some websites to help boost our ecosystems and save our furry and feathery friends:

http://worldwildlife.org/

http://www.sierraclubfoundation.org/

http://www.nature.org/

http://www.greenpeacefund.org/

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Solstice

21 Jun

Today is the Summer Solstice! Grab your flower crowns and go Bacchae wild this Friday.

Here are some earthy inspired beauty stuff to try:

Fishtail Braid video – (El Cee really did teach me how to do the ‘do!)

Connect with your inner flower child by using the too adorable Swedish Dream Sunflower facial soap. It’s very good for thirsty skin!

Let your eyelids be as green as the grass you prance on with Bobbi Brown’s Sage, Balsam and Forest Metallic Eye Shadow palette. All three are stunning greens. For a cheaper alternative, L’Oreal’s Wear Infinite Studio Secrets in Spring Leaf packs a pigment punch. Use Eco Tools Bamboo set to apply —  the fibers hold product very well. If you’d rather coat your lashes instead of your lids, try YSL’s Mascara in Jade Black. It’s dark enough like a normal black glob but when the sunlight hits  just right the green comes out. Magical.

Now enough interneting! Go out and play!

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Midsummer’s Night Dream engraving photo source

Robert Altman photograph of hippies dancing source

Video

POSH : Port Out Starboard Home

28 May

It’s cold enough to freeze the balls off a brass monkey in New York. While the weather’s having another tizzy fit, spark up a Malin + Goetze cannabis candle and peruse these beachy-keen things to get your mind off the rain.

what’s your summer song?

Smack, smooch, eat a popsicle and swallow uh… sea water with Becca Beach Tint for Lips and Cheeks. You know what? It’s that good it’s getting a photo for all you visual learners: Image The name says it all– this stuff is designed for the beach! It’s waterproof, blendable, buildable, and gives you a beautiful even color. No worries about swallowing stuck on hair strands either — Becca’s not goopy or sticky. It just seeps into your lips in a very, very low-key and pretty way. Add more layers for pizzazz and you’re good to go. I’m partial to berry shades but pick ya fave.

Since this post is beach themed, and although the sun is sleeping this May, sunscreen is the happiest and sexiest scent on earth. Just as happy and sexy as this tumblr: surfer-boys.

Go get yourself a boozy ice pop and let’s take a moment on that site before continuing

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Okay then, so slap on the euphoria even through this rainy season. It’ll lift your spirits. Promise. Current cheap fave is generic Duane Reade SPF 50 which smells exactly like sunscreen should and is easy to buy for you broke fi broke out there. Remember your ears, neck, and hands when schmearing. And since you’re being sooo good and spraying on the sun, further fox that faux tan with Physicians’ Formula Powder Palette Mineral Glow Pearls. If you have been chrysalis-izing till now, however, MAC Bronzing Powder will get you colorful. It’s matte, without shimmer and flash, so it really gives you a believable sun-kissed look.

I’m readdyyy! Sunshine here we come!

Spritz your mane with Miracle It’s A 10 Leave In to hydrate those salt-chlorine-sun scorched hairs. Those with finer hair should use their paws to distribute the product and not spritz their head directly because it is super conditioning and too much will make finer-haired folks look greasy. Curly and voluptuously maned pals like the dude below can splash directly.

definitely can handle the 10

 

Yes, yes, Princess Carolyn Bessette Kennedy famously wore this.

Unless you like being a mosquito’s milkshake, skip perfume in the summer. Having said that, Kareem Abdul’s Egyptian Musk is the ideal and perfect hint-o’-scent for the summer/year round/life. It too will get a photo cause it’s just that awesome.

Alright, alright, hear me out: This ain’t your grandma’s musk. It won’t retrieve repressed memories of being force-fed jelly candy and being told to sit straight. You’ll not pass out from this NOT overpowering scent. The Amazon description hits the nail on the mark (clickedy clack on the oil’s link above to read it). You will not smell like you’re wearing perfume. It’s subtle and just illuminates you in a stunning, truly personal way. It’s hard to describe! Guys and girls who hate “perfume” will love this.

Alright, as always, lemme know what you do to get ready for summer. For my New York friends, keep your spirit throughout this rain.


P.S.:

Like the monkey balls comment, the title refers to another nautical term. Those seamen are the best wordsmiths! 

Slick

22 May

Grease ‘er up.

Oil wrestling is the national sport of Turkey. If this photo gets you all hot and bothered, click here.

Seems like ever since argan oil (“Moroccan” oil) was successfully marketed as a “miracle” beauty treatment, more focus has been given to plant-based oils as natural and beneficial beauty ingredients.

Oils have been used for dietary, medicinal and cosmetic purposes throughout human history*. There is a whole alphabet of oils out there that you can use to slather and gloss with. Here are two ways to slick up and get down.

GLOP REMOVER AND SKIN CONDITIONER:

Ever wake up looking like Meeko in someone else’s den with nary a facial wipe in sight? Never fear! Most people have olive oil (usually in the kitchen) and toilet paper. Presto! ‘Coon eyes wiped away and you look dewy and lovely.

Some eye makeup removers (especially those in liquid form) can be very harsh on your delicate peeper tissue and cause irritations. Instead, use (you guessed it) oil on a cotton pad to clear the junk off and condition your skin. You already know Rose Oil‘s dexterity as a beauty base and especially as a makeup remover. I use it to wipe the drag queen load of globbity glob off my eyelashes.  Lighter oils like Virgin Olive, Sweet Almond, Jojoba, Grape seed, Vitamin E and Chamomile are great for your eyes and don’t leave as much grease behind. Use heavier oils like Coconut as a body moisturizer. All these oils are cheap if you buy them “as is” (versus packaged as beauty products) at your drugstore, health store or supermarket.

Dorian Corey

Click on the link right below this photo for the full scoop on Dor Cor’s mummy!

 What do Dorian Corey and the Ancient Egyptians have in common? A penchant for eyeliner and mummies. She had one in her tomb closet!! 

Of course, if you’d prefer to buy than create, The Balm Eye Make Up Break-Up is the best manufactured eye makeup remover. It comes in a tin and has a lighter consistency than Vaseline and is easier to spread. Most importantly, it will not throw a tantrum and spill everywhere which is a danger when travelling with oil.

HAIR SKRUNCHEROO POTION: Coconut Oil, Salt, Lemon and Water

Get a plastic spritzer and mix coconut oil, salt, lemon and water. It’s up to you to decide the proportions but remember that with coconut a little goes a long way. Add the oil first as a base and pile on the rest of the ingredients. Shake well and spritz sparingly and scrunch.

beach on your head! Yumiko Utsu’s “Octopus Portrait” (2009)

The hair potion is  a very cheap way to get beach hair (the lemon and salt lightens your strands as well) but you can always use Sally Hershberger’s Wave Spray, Wavy Hair instead which, incidentally, smells like coconut.

So how about you? Do you use oils? Do you have any other tricks for me to learn? Do you prefer to make your own beauty concoctions or trust and prefer store-bought? Tell me tell me tell me!


* Note: Ancient Greeks and Romans adored their olive oil salves while folks in Ancient Egypt preferred ben and balanos oils as bases for their aromas. The O’odham introduced jojoba to settlers as a way to treat burns and wounds. Berber women have long produced argan oil for cooking and the growing demand of the oil as a cosmetic has assisted many to establish economic independence


 

Yumiko Utsu’s “Octopus Portrait” photo credit

Keepin It 100…

21 May

… Even when you haven’t showered. Yeah, yeah, I know I know… it’s summmerr and the subway is hot.

If you ever find yourself in such a situation, quit fretting and let those pheromones fly confidently with a bit of help from the following.

 

STICK O’ SCENT: UNDERARM PERFUME

You don’t need to keep your arms pinned to your side if you have Old Spice Deodorant: The Classic Formula  and/or (your pick) Speed Stick Regular.

Old Spice Classic Deodorant Stick, Original 3.25 oz [012044389706]

Now this is the deo version — not the antiperspirent and deodorant combo mix — thus it has that refreshing Old Spice  (or Speed Stick) scent without the cakey deodorant smell of the sports-centered varieties. Essentially, it’s a freshener for your underarms and will trick even you into thinking that you actually are a responsible grown up who practices good hygiene.

 

GREASE MOPPERS: DRY SHAMPOOS

FACT: Dry shampoo is the most brilliant invention since penicillin. It too is a life saver.

All jokes aside, dry shampoo is incredibly handy. My co-worker Lizzy and I have gone through a lot of different brands and have come up with the two best so far: Oscar Blandi Pronto Dry Shampoo (loose powder that you put in your hand) and the drugstore Rolls-Royce Pssssssssssssssssssssssssssssst Dry Shampoo. When using the spritz Pssst, just remember to shake shake shake senora before using.

This whiskerando probably would have benefited from these waterless potions

The ideal dry shampoo mops, fluffs, and does not leave any dust if used with a hairbrush. It should just zest up your ‘do. With Oscar and Pssssssssst, you have no reason to have fear of your head doubling as a chalkboard.  Brush thoroughly just to make sure you get the stuff fully nuzzled on top of your skull. Otherwise you’ll end up looking like Marie Antoinette pre-Revolution.

Finally we come to

SWAMP FACE SCRUBBERS: FACIAL WIPEY THINGS

Summer gives you a serious case of “Swamp Face”: sweaty, runny, and sticky. Swamp Face + Not Showering = Miserableness. Keep facial wipes in every single bag you own.

Every person has his /her  favorite wipe and my currents are Yes to Carrots Cucumber Facial Towlettes and Neutrogena Hydrating towels. Scrubs away the sins of last night that lead you to not showering this morning in the first place.

SWAMP FACE MISTERS

My friend Allison brought it up that a great thing to keep in mind for the summer is a spritzy mist. There are a whole lot out there. From Evian to Caudalie, most can get pricey. Remember the rose spritz mentioned earlier here? That works very well and also restores the pH balance in your face. You can of course just get a plastic spritz bottle from the drugstore and fill with water, but I’d recommend adding some witch hazel to that mix to swagg it up inexpensively. Witch hazel is pretty cheap and everyone should have it in their cabinets. I like all witch hazels, but there is something about Thayers Witch Hazel with Aloe Vera Rose Petals that looks so perfect not only on the face but also on the counter. It’s all about the aesthetics people.

So, what are your tricks? I really need to have a couple more in my bag!

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Edgar Degas’ “Woman Seated in an Armchair Wiping Her Left Armpit” (c. 1895)

Beard dude photo credit

Henri Matisse’s “Portrait of Madame Matisse” (1905)

Let’s Go Out

26 Mar

Like up all night on “fun stuff”-out. Usually the best night begins with an optimistic plan to just get one beer with a friend and then lo and behold you’re rolling to the deli for 5 AM beer and egg n’ cheeses. But…for those concerts/events/museum openings that you have been looking forward to and want to get all sprucey goosey for, take a break from the bronzer and smokey eye and get hot pink and sparkly.

You can combine all this stuff if you’re a candy flippin flower child or want to look like one (respect). Try one or two suggestions on their own if you like planet Earth and want to stay firmly within this side of the orbit (also respect). It should go without saying that you don’t give a hootenanny about squares and their raised eyebrows though.

Tinkerbell ain’t got nuthin on you when you douse your mane in this spray. The sidewalks will be blessed with your fairy dust as you float on by.

Another nice alternative is NYX Body Glitter Gel in a whole range of fabulous colors. Take a swim in it– it can be used both for hair and body.

Like a glow stick, you can mix Make Up Forever Fluo Night powder in white with other powder makeup to enhance the pigment or to make visible in black light. I like to mix and design things around my eyes like flowers or just color blocks. Or mix the pink with your lipstick for some trippy lips. I only have the white and the pink one, but I would love to do a whole body art piece with the whole palette.

Anyone remember when Sailor Beyonce made her Temptu Dereon temporary tattoo line? I have a box of Temptu‘s temporary tattoos in like “Sweetheart” or something. This was for that one time I went out inspired by a rockabilly person. It came with intricate designs, some roses, hearts, and other things. You need a little bit of patience to apply them as well as the professional did for Beyonce (below). I can’t seem to see if Temptu is still producing the sets anymore but temporary kid tattoos are fun too just for the hell of it.

Speaking of tats, Maybelline’s Eye Studio Color Tattoo come in a WHOLE range of super pigmented pleasure pods. They are smudge proof, drink proof, hurricane proof and truly last 24 hours (I tested this once by drinking a bottle of wine by myself during Hurricane Sandy Halloween before going out — I was an evil queen — and woke up the next day to still very violet eye lids).

There are of course a whole range of crazy party makeup options out there (Carnival style falsies anyone?) These are the few that I have tried and really liked. I WANT TO LEARN MORE THOUGH So please hit me up below! And let’s go out.

The Feminine Beauty Ideal

26 Mar

While writing the past couple of posts, it has occurred to me that no beauty-whatever bloggy thing can be complete without at least a short discussion on feminine beauty ideals. The “feminine beauty ideal,” these smarty pants sum up, is the “…socially constructed notion that physical attractiveness is one of women’s most important assets, and is something all women should try to achieve and maintain” (711). This is a broad description, and it is understood by us and scholars alike that there are many paradoxes within the reasons why women (and men for that manner) strive to or uphold a standard of grooming or beauty. There are also many standards of beauty ideals.

And now onto hur.

I hate to admit it, but I feel like I have to have manageable hair. To be fair, my loosely curly/wavy hair is completely manageable, but I do not feel my best if I haven’t tamed it a bit with the ghd classic flat iron.

ghd Classic styler

Do I feel like it seems more professional? Yes. Do I do it I have to do it though because of society? Maybe. I don’t like to make my hair stick straight as it feels unnatural for me (see Garance Dore’s piece on her then stick straight hair), I just like to pull the ghd (the Rolls-Royce of flat irons in my opinion) through my naturally dried tousled hair to get it a bit smoother and flatter.

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punkish lion photo