31 days to a prettier 2017 : change it up!

It’s Friday night and the weekend is here  …

Day 27 : January 27

Celebrate the weekend ahead with a quick polish change!

It’s easy to let your manicure sit and wear itself away until the first chip … but half the fun about nails and polish is that you can change it up in a quick minute and customize it to your mood. If you’ve been wearing an office appropriate shade all week long, strip it off and swipe on a new “weekend wow” colour.

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The great thing about today’s task is that you can do it yourself! You just need your remover and polish, and about 20 minutes. if you’re super handy with at-home manicures, then take some extra time to tend to any ragged cuticles and rough nails.

Paint away and enjoy your day!

TIP : Don’t forget your base coat and top coat! And speaking of topcoat, get to your Friday Night festivities faster with a quick-dry topcoat!

HOMEWORK : None – it’s FRIDAY!!!

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31 days to a prettier 2017 : choose your weapon …

Very early on in this January 2017 guide, we told you that you needed to clean your brushes thoroughly and regularly from then on. Hopefully, you’ve been in the habit of doing so. Having clean tools is the best for avoiding irritations to the skin and reducing any opportunity for contamination between products. But having the right tools, that are in great working condition, is key to having great makeup looks.

Day 25 : January 25

Do an inventory and quality control check on all your makeup tools.

Besides brushes, this would include sponges, tweezers, mirrors and even your cotton swabs. 

Check your brushes – are they losing fibres or shedding? Are the brush hairs frayed and bent and out of shape? Are the handles broken or wiggly? And what about your tweezers? Still sharp and straight? Are your special makeup sponges split or torn anywhere?

The goal here is to either repair any tools (if you can) as needed, toss any tools that are past their prime, and make note of anything that needs to be replaced. In addition, you may want to consider doubling up on any brushes that you use constantly or need to clean constantly because you are always using it. For me, this would include shader brushes and/or crease/blending brushes (in fact, I probably own two of every eye brush I have). 

Nice you’ve weeded out the brushes and tools that need to be retired from their job, and have restocked with fresh new tools, you’ll find your makeup application easier, cleaner, and more polished.

Get to work!

TIP : If you have brushes where the hairs or fibres are out of shape or somewhat frayed, try cleansing and then CONDITIONING the natural hairs, before you consider tossing it. Sometimes that can fix the issue.  If not … recycle!

HOMEWORK : If you happen to be a one brush per facial feature kinda gal, try broadening your horizons and seek out different shaped brushes for said facial feature. Different brushes have different jobs and can make a huge difference in the execution of a particular look!

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31 days to a prettier 2017 : find your perfect concealer …

Have you ever caught your reflection midday and thought to yourself : “woah …”; and not like an enthusiastic woah that you hear in rap songs but more like a “what happened?” kind of woah. Midday or late day, you may find that your coverage has faded, or that some redness has appeared, or at the very least you are just in dire need of a touch-up. Let’s prevent that from happening.

Day 25 : January 25

Get yourself the perfect portable concealer.

I’m a huge advocate for having a concealer stick or pencil in my makeup kit – even if you only wear a base and rarely need any concealer (if that’s the case you’re super lucky!). Concealer sticks/pencils are small, transportable,  and easy to use; and if you find the right one – they are super creamy and blendable. All of these factors combined makes it the best tool for makeup that always looks fresh and natural. All it takes is a quick look in the mirror during your lunch break, your concealer, and your fingertips.

As mentioned, you’ll want one that is creamy; this will allow you to blend over your skin without the aid of more moisturizer and if your skin tends to get drier as the day wears on. Concealer sticks are better for this, but some pencils can be creamy in consistency – it’s just a matter of testing products out. Creamier concealers are good for touching up under the eyes and around the nose. Concealer pencils – which tend to by firmer – are exceptional at covering up hard to hide zits or marks on the face. If you find your skin blemishes need more help than bags under the eyes, they might work better for you.

When it comes to application, it doesn’t get any easier – its basically apply directly from tube to face and use your fingers to warm the product and blend it in. No brushes, no sponges. 

Bye bye bad face days!

TIP : Get colour matched. It’s super easy and any makeup artist at any beauty department can point you in the right direction.

HOMEWORK : Know what brands work for you before you shop. If there are certain brands that you know work best for you as base products, try to shop within those brands for consistency and ultimate happiness with your chosen concealer!

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31 days to a prettier 2017 : look cute, be cute

By now, the winter season is possibly taking it’s toll on you; everyone gets hit with a bit of blahs before the end of January and it doesn’t quit until at least the end of February. It might be time for a pick me up!

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Day 24 : January 24

Pick up a bright new makeup bag!

It could be something that you find at The Dollar Store that makes you smile … or it good be one of those cute ones from Sephora with the funny phrases on it. It doesn’t matter just as long as you love it and it makes you smile every time you open it up to start your day. If you’re smiling before you even start your makeup routine, you’re already looking good!

Happy shopping!

TIP : Make sure you choose a bag big enough to house everything you consider a “must have at all times”. Pack it up with all the stuff you would want to have on hand if you had to do your makeup in  the car or at the gym.

HOMEWORK : Before you buy, consider what you love and don’t love about your current makeup bag or storage system.  If you need to keep things separate, only choose a makeup bag that has compartments. If you need to keep tools and brushes in there as well, look at ones that have pockets to hold brushes and a plastic flap over it to keep the rest of the bag clean.

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31 days to a prettier 2017 : eat your greens …

Diet and complexion go hand in hand. The healthier the diet, the healthier the body, the healthier the skin. And healthy skin and beauty are hand in hand.

Day 23 : January 23

Get your salad on and eat a little cleaner.

Earlier in this 31-day guide, I told you that hot water and lemon is one of my favourite ways to wake up my skin in the morning. Another way to keep my skin in check and looking bright is eating a cleaner diet.

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I’m not going to sit her and tell you to ditch everything humane and enjoyable to eat like pizza and nachos and french fries … but I am going to ask you to have salads more often … or a vegan pizza … or more avocado mash instead of Skippy’s peanut butter on your toast. A plant based diet consisting of more vegetables and fruits is a sure fire way to get your skin going in the right direction for anti-acne, anti-aging, and anti-anything you hate about your skin.

My favourite ways to get a cleaner diet without feeling like I’m sacrificing :

  • I make sure at least one meal a day is a healthy salad, (and by healthy salad I do not mean a taco salad – not all salads are equal).
  • Everything I drink throughout the day is water, but to keep me sane, I allow myself one iced tea (or other flavoured drink) a day.
  • If I want something that’s not so clean … like chicken wings … I’ll make them at home from scratch rather than buying a frozen box of them or eating out at a restaurant.
  • I prepare snacks in advance. I always laughed at this piece of advice when I read it in fitness magazines because truth be told, no one needs to prepare a Kit Kat in advance; however, since choosing to eat cleaner including cleaner snacking options, having a small Tupperware of almonds in my purse nixes cravings for anything processed.
  • I forgive myself when I fall out of line. This is key. So what if you  dug into that bowl of macaroni and cheese you prepared for your children? It’s okay … next meal is a whole new meal.

Happy noshing!

TIP : Meal prepping is hard to start, I know, because I try to try it out every single week and never do it. However, if you can at least think ahead to the next day and have a loose plan for what you’re going to eat … chances are you will make smarter choices when it comes to your meals.

HOMEWORK : Google recipes for easy to make clean meals.  You don’t have to go all Jamie Oliver on it … but get an idea of what some of the key ingredients are and some simple methods for making veggies or clean meals taste decadent.

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