Written on June 17, 2013 at 9:00 am , by Fitness Magazine
Vanessa Williams is a busy bee. Not only is she an actress, singer, dancer, author and mother of four, she was recently named the spokesperson for Clear Eyes. I chatted with her about how she does it all—from looking gorg in front of the camera to staying fit despite her crazy schedule.
How were you introduced to Clear Eyes’ products? Why do you love them?
“I was introduced through my makeup artist, Sam Fine, because we always start with Clear Eyes’ drops and then we continue with the makeup process, which usually takes about an hour or so. It’s all beauty-related. Between fashion shoots, camerawork and being in front of the lens, it’s important for me to use Clear Eyes. And it’s not only photo shoots, but any kind of film work where you’re working late hours, and supposed to be in the same scene and not make it look like you’re still working at two in the morning. So they definitely come in handy; they’re a necessity for me.”
Speaking of eyes, yours are stunning! Do you have any makeup tricks to complement them?
“One of my tricks is using a beige or white pencil on the inside of the eye. That opens up your eyes and makes them look fresh. I use white on stage just because I can use that for the distance. I think it depends on what environment you are in, but white makes the eyes pop and beige makes them look natural. It’s one of those foolproof guarantees. I’ve got the beige pencil traveling with me in my bag.”
Our readers are all about staying in shape. What’s your favorite way?
“Right now, I’m doing mixed martial arts at Westchester MMA, which I started in the fall. For the first half, it’s a cardio fit class, and then you put your boxing gloves on and work with a heavy bag about six foot tall. I do combinations: kicks, switch kicks, hooks and upper cuts. It’s fantastic. I do rounds of it, and between I also jump rope and run around the room, so it’s nice. Also, in Los Angeles, I use the program Drenched. The studio is called Body Theory, so it’s a cardio kick boxing class. I also do yoga, Alvin Ailey and Zumba classes. And when I don’t have anything, or when I’m traveling, I just jump on the treadmill for an hour and use some hand weights. I’ve just got to do something. Especially the older you get, you lose muscle tone so easily, and you just can’t afford to take any time off.”
What’s your favorite healthy snack?
“My favorite is Skinny Pop Popcorn, which I’ve been eating for about a year and a half now. I love popcorn, and it’s a guilt-free kind of thing. I can eat the whole bag, which has zero fat and still tastes delicious. It doesn’t taste like styrofoam; it tastes like really good popcorn with just enough salt.”
—Katelyn Blough, beauty intern
Written on June 14, 2013 at 11:20 am , by Fitness Magazine
One of the many perks of being a beauty intern at FITNESS is getting to experiment with different looks. Each morning, I switch up my eye makeup so I don’t get bored (yes, it helps I have a beauty closet to shop in!). Recently, I stumbled across skinny smolderEYES Amazonian clay waterproof liner ($19, tarte.com). The smooth, creamy tip glides onto my lids like butter (I hate hard eyeliners with pointy edges that hurt my skin when applying) and the color doesn’t smear even after a long day staring at a computer screen. There’s a smudger at the other end to help you create the easiest smoky eye on the planet (just swipe on the liner then go over it with the sponge tip to blur the line). What I love most about this liner is the variety of colors it comes in. Golden Tiger’s Eye is the perfect everyday brown. Feeling frisky? Try Amazonite Blue. It’s a guaranteed stand-out-in-the-crowd shimmer. I think I’ve found a keeper. In fact, I love them so much I might stop experimenting with other eye products each morning!
—Katelyn Blough, beauty intern
Written on June 12, 2013 at 2:51 pm , by Molly Ritterbeck
You might not recognize Bobby Holland Hanton by name, but if you’ve seen big time blockbusters like Inception, 007 Skyfall, The Dark Knight Rises and the final two Harry Potter movies, then you’ve seen his work. As one of Hollywood’s top stuntmen, he transforms his body to mirror the major stars he’s stunting for (think: Daniel Craig, Christian Bale and Chris Hemsworth to name a few). His latest adventure is teaming up with Dove Men+Care to help shed some light on the “face torture” most men put their skin through, including poor grooming routines and razor burn. With Father’s Day quickly approaching, we chatted with Hanton to get his top training secrets, as well as, some solid skin-care advice and recommendations so you can share them with the special men in your life.
Some guys disregard skin-care. Why is it important to you and what do you love about Dove Men+Care?
“A lot of guys—over half of my friends—don’t use any face care whatsoever, and that includes the guys I work with, so hopefully that’s the reason I’m getting the jobs and they’re not. At the moment, I’m using the Dove Men+Care. The new body wash, Odor Guard ($6, drugstore.com), is fantastic because I don’t want to be going on set and smelling bad so that helps remove and control odor. They also have a new face range out at the moment that I’m using as well. The face wash hydrates my skin but doesn’t irritate it so I don’t have to worry about that when I get to work, and the same goes for the face lotion, which is great to use after shaving. And if you’re looking for gifts, they have cool Father’s Day Gift Sets available at Wal-mart.”
As a stunt double for a ton of Hollywood stars, what do you do to prepare for a role?
“Preparing for a role really depends on the actor I’m preparing to double on that movie. If it’s action movie like Thor with Chris Hemsworth, he’s a huge, huge guy naturally, let alone when he’s training and working out to get to the size of Thor, so I’ll generally work out the training program myself or work with a trainer and a nutrition program to match what Chris is eating throughout the whole movie and we try and work out together as much as possible when we get time. Also, it’s up to me to get into that kind of physical shape as soon as I know that I’ve been chosen for that job. So if I’m doubling with Daniel Craig on a Bond movie, he’s a lot slimmer and slender, so it’s more about eating well and not training quite as much. So it just depends, but the training programs and the nutrition programs change massively.”
You’re obviously an expert in transforming your body. What are the key things that someone should focus on if they want to see big results?
“Due to much of my life doing this, I would say that probably 85% of the success in achieving your goals is nutrition. If you can really restrict and focus on exactly the right times to eat during the day and what you should eat, then the training actually comes secondary. But also I would say that sticking to a very strict routine for a period of time is important. For example, if I’m not that strict on a movie, then I might train five days a week, and have two days off where I kind of take it easy on my diet. It really depends on the goals you want to achieve. Try to be as regimental as possible, not just about your food and training but about everything, down to waking up in the morning and sticking to a certain routine. And that’s the way I find it easiest to control, and I mean that. I would really say that’s the most important thing.”
You mentioned eating at the right times. Are you an advocate of eating smaller meals more often throughout the day or does it all depend on what you are preparing for?
“Yes, I am the master of eating small amounts regularly. What I try to do generally is eat every two hours, small amounts. But it is really a part of your daily routine, being able to do that and taking the right snacks to work or to train with you. I mean, for me, my routine is that I literally wake up in the morning and I’ll shower, go to work and have my first meal of the day, which will be a protein meal: like chicken, turkey, spinach, natural nuts in the morning. Trying to do that, I must say, is very difficult because it’s tough to eat the same kind of stuff everyday so you try and change up as much as possible. And then after small portions of that, another protein snack and then lunch time, I’ll introduce my first set of carbs—clean, good carbs, meaning sweet potatoes, brown rice, etc. And I’ll eat small amounts again all the way up until I go to bed. A lot of people believe you shouldn’t eat carbs after a certain time, but I don’t believe that. It certainly doesn’t work for me. I eat small amounts, including carbs, all the way up until bedtime.”
I imagine your body and muscles take a beating when training and filming so how do you recover from soreness or small injuries?
“You know, that’s a great point, as my job is mostly physical, one of the most physical out there. So I do get little bumps and stuff like that a lot, and sore muscles, so it’s really important to stretch. I stretch in the mornings, before we start anything—that’s when you’re going to be your stiffest. So sometimes we spend a half hour stretching in the morning before we do anything physical and also before we train, we have a stretch and a jog on the running machine to keep our muscles warmed up. It’s very, very important.”
What was one of the craziest stunts you’ve ever attempted and how did you get past that fear of doing something that intimidated you?
“I think I got thrown into the deep end on my first job, which was on the Bond movie where I was the stunt double for Daniel Craig. I was twenty-three and new to the stunt world in movies. So I had to do a balcony jump in Panama, which was the last shot of the night at two o’clock in the morning. It was dark and there were a lot of elements; it wasn’t just the jump from one balcony to another, it was down a narrow corridor where I couldn’t see my take off or landing point, and I had no safety and no wires. We rehearsed it back on the stage with safety mats and boxes and it all measured out to exactly how the set was in Panama. So I knew I could do it, it was just trying to overcome the nerves. So I tried to turn the nerve side and the fear side of it into adrenaline, which helps me massively. I think I perform slightly better a bit under pressure and high intensity. So it actually worked out perfect. I managed to get it in two takes, we went home and everyone was happy.”
Written on May 31, 2013 at 9:00 am , by Molly Ritterbeck
While the majority of New Yorkers are getting a little cranky due to the 90-degree temps, I’m loving the recent heat wave. Though it does make me wish I was jetting off to a tropical island in the middle of nowhere. And while no such vacation exists on my summer calendar (wah!), I made my own quiet little escape—in my shower. It’s not as glamorous, I know, but I grabbed Softsoap’s Limited Edition Maui Coconut Splash Moisturizing Body Wash ($3, drugstores) from the beauty closet and scrubbed up after the gym. The formula is luxurious with a rich, hydrating lather, but the scent is what’ll really get you. The bright floral notes mixed with a hint of sweet coconut intoxicate you like your favorite fruity, umbrella-on-the-side cocktail. This might sound a bit dramatic, but seriously, the experience is so relaxing it might just be enough to hold me over until I can finally get to that white-sanded slice of paradise.
Written on May 24, 2013 at 9:43 am , by Molly Ritterbeck
Even though the forecast is looking a bit dismal for the holiday weekend for us New Yorkers (meh!), I’m still looking forward to enjoying some time outdoors—protected, of course, because yes, you can get rays even when it’s cloudy outside. So whether you’re headed somewhere sunny or just planning a staycation this weekend, one of the best things to have on hand is this convenient travel kit from StriVectin. The Sun Kit and Eye Bundle ($59, strivectin.com) holds an Age Protect Sunscreen SPF 30, Intensive Concentrate for Stretch Marks and Wrinkles and Eye Concentrate for Wrinkles housed in a cute little orange pouch. Plus, it includes a UV indicator bracelet, which alerts you when you’ve been in the sun too long and serves as a reminder to reapply sunscreen. Speaking of sun protection, if you’d like to help contribute to The Skin Cancer Foundation, head over to the StriVectin Be the Face of Safe Sun app to submit your profile picture to be included in their mosaic. For every picture submitted, StriVectin will donate $1 (up to $10,000) to The Skin Cancer Foundation. Once they receive all 10,000 pictures to complete the mosaic, they will share the interactive design as a fun, inspirational way to continue to spread awareness of skin cancer.
Written on May 23, 2013 at 5:06 pm , by Molly Ritterbeck
Lauren Conrad wears many different hats: She’s a fashion designer with two lines—one is called Paper Crown; the other is an exclusive line for Kohl’s called LC Lauren Conrad. She’s a writer and has her own series of fiction tales as well as style and beauty guides. She’s even made a must-check-daily contribution to the blogosphere with a blog she created with her hairstylist, Kristin Ess, and makeup artist, Amy Nadine, called thebeautydepartment.com (if you don’t already follow it and her on Instagram @laurenconrad—you should start!). Recently, we chatted with her about her latest venture, a partnership with Malibu (yes, the rum), plus health and beauty tips.
So tell us about Malibu’s new launch.
“Well, I am partnering with Malibu to launch Malibu Island Spice, which is only 70 calories a serving so I’m really excited.”
What does the new flavor taste like?
“It’s similar to the original Malibu, but it’s a little bit bolder and it has coconut, vanilla and a hint of cinnamon in it. It’s really good.”
Do you have a favorite drink recipe that you like to use it in?
“I like to mix it with coconut water—it tastes like a little Piña Colada.”
It’s great that it’s only 70 calories. Do you have any high-cal indulgent foods that are off-limits in your diet?
“I have only-every-once-in-awhile foods. I think whenever I restrict myself to the point where I’m not allowed to have something, it is the only thing that I want. So, for me, I have foods that are special occasion or treat foods, whether it’s pasta or something as simple as dessert, that’s not an everyday thing. I think you should still enjoy good things.”
How do you like to stay fit?
“I think it’s more about a lifestyle rather than just trying to go on a diet as soon as you want to come down. I think small, healthy choices are what works best for me. I think it’s staying active and it’s just little things. I think that going on diet can be a bit intimidating. For me, it never really worked.”
Switching gears a bit to beauty, we follow your thebeautydepartment.com blog. What’s your best advice for getting ready in a hurry?
“I do it often. I think it’s just finding products that work well for you and really just getting into a routine. I can do my entire face in five minutes if I need to. I ideally like to take a little longer because I actually enjoy doing my makeup, but I think it’s just finding no-fuss looks that work.”
If you had to choose, what are the three beauty essentials that you have to have?
“I like a good foundation. That’s really important to me. I have some discoloration on my skin, so I need something just to even it out. And then, probably a blush and a mascara if I’m only picking three for the day.”
Written on May 17, 2013 at 10:18 am , by Molly Ritterbeck
As the weather’s warming up, my go-to hairstyle these past few weeks has been the top knot (just like every other girl in New York City). It’s easy, and can transform dirty strands into a cute style. I’ve played around with nearly every “bun-stuffing” contraption that has come into our office and my favorite is the Sarah Potempa The Wrap Up ($12, sarahpotempa.com). You simply pull your hair into a ponytail and slide the pony through the opening in the middle. Then, roll it up to the base, fold the flexible ends into a round bun and voilá—an instantly chic updo. If you have layers and a few pieces poke out, just smooth them down with hairspray and pin into place. You can go for a formal look (I used it to style my hair smooth and polished for a recent wedding I attended), or try something a little more piecey and casual (my messy bun held up through a training session with The Biggest Loser trainer, Dolvett Quince!). The possibilities are endless. And it comes in a smaller size, The Half Up ($9, sarahpotempa.com) so girls with fine or shorter hair can get in on the fun too.
Written on May 15, 2013 at 1:24 pm , by Molly Ritterbeck
Catt Sadler brings us the latest entertainment news every day as a co-anchor on E! News, but it’s her chic style that’s garnering headlines this time. She’s teamed up with Scotch-Brite (you know, the home cleaning products’ company) to give you the chance to win $5,000 toward a new wardrobe and a personal style consultation with Sadler through their First Impressions Photo Contest. Here, the working mom of two shares some of her styling secrets, the best ways to make a good impression, as well as, her favorite workouts and beauty tricks.
So tell us about the contest.
“It’s very cool. Essentially we’re encouraging people, fashionistas especially, to make their best first impression by uploading a photo of themselves to the Scotch Brite Facebook page with a couple lines below it as to why they are making the best first impression. The contest goes through May, and then in June, our judges will narrow the participants down to fifteen finalists. In mid-June, the public can go online and vote for their favorites until it’s narrowed down to three finalists. Then, I will pick the final winner, and they’ll get a $5,000 wardrobe makeover, which is pretty awesome, and an online style consultation with me. We’ll have an online chat situation where I can answer questions and give them tips or even look at their wardrobe and help them get rid of stuff.”
What’s your best advice for making a good first impression?
“Well, I have a couple of tips. Some of them are pretty traditional style advice like mixing highs and lows [prices]. I think everybody knows that’s a good way to go when you’re shopping. I don’t think you need to throw a lot of money into the really trendy things like floral blouses that are in. You can buy those for cheap, but then you’ve got those investment pieces like [points to her Chloé bag] this. Yes, I did invest in this little puppy. But I will have this forever and if I have a little girl, I’ll pass it down. These are timeless pieces that certainly supplement any outfit nicely, so splurge on the pieces that are going to be around for a while. I do something called ‘last looks’ everyday before going on TV, which I think can be good advice for girls before they leave their house: smooth your flyalways or get the lipstick off your teeth. And that ties directly to the Scotch Brite Printed Lint Rollers ($4, staples.com) because you don’t want little fuzzies all over you. You have to do that ‘last look’ to make sure you’re crisp, chic, looking good before heading out the door. If I had to pick one other one it would have little to do with fashion and that’s just more about the energy and the spirit that you convey. I think that’s huge when you’re making a first impression. Whatever it is that you want to convey to whomever it is, your boss, or a hot guy at the bar, you want it to be the best representation of yourself.”
You mentioned doing DVDs but do you have any other favorite workouts?
“You know, those methods are pretty strict in that you do it six days a week for an hour at a time, and I certainly do not do that. I’m like most people; I go in waves. I work out really hard for six weeks and then I don’t do anything for a month. You know, I just think it’s the way we all realistically are in our daily lives. I try to move no matter what. My kids and I, we go hiking or I ride bikes with them, but other than really doing those videos, I will mostly just run. That’s my thing. When it’s gorgeous in L.A., like why am I in my living room doing DVDS? Get out the door! I always thought running was challenging. I don’t think I’ve ever gone more than three miles in my life, I’ve never done a marathon or anything, but the better you get at it and the more fit you are, the longer you want to go. So I was actually just interviewing a bunch of Olympic athletes that are hopefuls for the Sochi Olympics and this cross-country skier was telling me you just need to go to the ‘pain cave.’ And I was like, ‘what’s the pain cave?’ It’s about this whole mental place you have to go. If you can get yourself 30 seconds, then that turns into another minute and then that’s three more minutes. So I think of this now and I go to the ‘pain cave’ and then when I’m running I’m like, ‘You can do it! Don’t stop!’”
What are some go-to healthy meals or snacks that you make for yourself and your kids?
“I’m not a cook; I’m not going to make that up. We’ve gotten really into seaweed and kale. That has become our replacement for chips. They actually like it and that’s awesome, and it’s actually easy for me to do. I just put raw kale on a baking sheet and throw some olive oil and some salt and pepper and put it in the oven and then it becomes crispy and they’ll eat it for days.”
What are some of your best beauty tricks that you picked up from being on television everyday?
“For starters, when it comes to hair, I think showing your face is always a really good thing to do. There was that period when it was really trendy to have your hair in a middle part and you’re all covered up. But I definitely don’t think that’s the way you want to go, especially when it comes to making a good first impression. I think people should show their face more. That helps. The other thing is, and it’s tricky these days with high-def television, but I think skin is really important. Of course they put a ton of makeup on me with being on TV and of course we all want to appear flawless with our foundation, but I think you want to look like you have skin. You don’t want to look like you’re wearing a mask ever. The only other last trick, which applies to television and real life, and my obsession, is contouring. You don’t need the bone structure because it becomes your bone structure. I think it can make a night and day difference, but it’s about choosing the right product, whatever that is. Some makeup artists I work with use a dark stick foundation; I’m not as big a fan of that. I just like a dark bronzer, and the right brush, and just don’t overdue it because then you can look crazy leaving the house and that’s not the goal.”
Written on May 10, 2013 at 1:58 pm , by Fitness Magazine
We go to the gym to put in work. But that’s not to say we don’t get giddy when we find an accessory that is both functional and cute to wear during our sweat sessions. Enter Emi-Jay Hair Ties and Headbands (prices vary, emi-jay.com). Not only do they keep hair and sweat out of our face, but they add a pop of color to basic workout clothes. What makes these ribbon-like accessories cool is that they can be used in multiple ways. Want to glam up a boring pony, bun or braid? Tie your hair with one of the lightweight, stretchy bands, or simply slide on a bright, patterned headband to keep flyaways tame. No matter how you wear them, they’re guaranteed to brighten your look and mood.
—Katelyn Blough, beauty intern
Actress Christine Taylor Opens Up About Going Organic and Being The Face of Nourish (A New Organic Beauty Line)
Written on May 9, 2013 at 3:31 pm , by Molly Ritterbeck
You probably know Christine Taylor from her roles in laugh-out-loud movies like Dodgeball: a True Underdog Story and Zoolander (and even as Melody from the Nickelodeon TV show, Hey Dude), but off camera, she’s spreading her passion for health and wellness to everyone around her. As the spokesperson for the 100% USDA certified organic beauty line, Nourish, she’s sharing her personal journey of integrating better health into her family’s lifestyle and encouraging others to live greener. Here, she shares her story and secrets to staying fit and keeping her family healthy.
What interested you about Nourish?
“Well, when I had my children, I started to look at labels more. I was always health conscious about food and I would try to buy organic and eat as cleanly as possible, but when I had these little babies, I was all about looking at the labels of the creams and the lotions and shampoos and I didn’t want any chemicals. It really took me a while to connect the dots that what you’re putting on your body is just as important as what you’re putting in your body. So when Nourish came along, it was one of those stories where I got to meet the brains and the incredible guys behind it and we just clicked. It was amazing to me because they put these products in front of me, which are packaged beautifully. The girl in me loves the pretty packaging but nine times out of ten, that pretty packaging would be terrible and wouldn’t work well. So when I sat down to look at these products, they were beautiful to look at. The product themselves work extremely well. And the big kicker for me: each product is under ten dollars, which is unheard of. At least for me, particularly for an organic product, it was music to my ears because I felt that this is a great way to make organic products accessible to everyone. And it’s USDA certified, which is important because something that I’ve learned is that consumers can get tricked when they hear something is all natural. Well, natural is very different from organic. Natural just means it could have a few natural products in it, whereas organic means everything has to be organic especially with the USDA seal. I think it just gives me complete peace of mind. It’s gentle enough for the kids and my whole family can use it.”
Do you have a favorite product in the line?
“I’m a fan of their Body Butter ($10, nourishorganic.com). I have naturally dry skin and living in New York in the wintertime my skin gets really dry. The fresh fig is my favorite scent. I love it because I can just put it on my feet, hands and cuticles before I go to bed. And it’s not so greasy that you get it all over your sheets. It actually really saturates your skin and you just wake up with sweet-smelling, soft hands like little baby skin.”
When it comes to beauty, do you have any great tips to share?
“Something that I’ve learned along the way, my cardinal rule, is a good clean face. I just feel like keeping your skin clean is one of the most important things. I’ll never fall asleep with makeup on or skip washing my face in the morning. Those are two of the most important things to start and finish your day with from a beauty perspective and an anti-aging perspective. Another thing that I’ve joked about forever is sleep. It’s one of my greatest beauty tips. I don’t get enough of it, but I always feel like it makes a huge difference.”
How do you incorporate healthy eating into your household?
“My daughter, who is now 11, made the decision at 7 that she was going to be a vegetarian. It was over the summer. We were on a vacation and we were at barns and farms. There were lots of chickens. She spent all of this time with the animals and came home and we went to a barbeque and she connected the dots that the barbeque chicken was the same as the cute chickens she was playing with; and she was really firm about it and said I don’t want to eat it anymore. So as a parent, I was at a time in my life where I just wasn’t as interested in meat. So I think when she made that decision, I naturally had been gravitating toward natural plant-based foods and greens. And I realized that if my daughter wants to do this, I would have to get a little bit more proactive about what’s healthy and what are good ways for her to get protein because she can’t just be a carbotarian. So I just figured out ways to get protein in her. I’m not a chef or anything so it was a fun project for me to take on. I got really interested in the foods that we haven’t been used to eating like beans and brown rice. So everything was just sort of just cleaning up in the house as far as what was in the cabinets. I still have two kids and we eat treats, but I thought it was just important for us to start as a family integrating overall health and wellness.”
Do you have any favorite on-the-go snacks for the kids?
“Absolutely! I wish I could tell you that when you open up the fridge, it’s perfect and that you see green. Those are all in there but the reality is that we do a lot of driving. You know, I take the kids back and forth to school, so we have to have snacks. One of the best things that I’ve found for a quick snack is edamame. It’s a little protein that can fill you up a little bit. And for the munchie stuff, I just try to go more organic with those things because I think that kids want to have something a little crunchy. So instead of getting the overly processed, I’ll try to find something at Whole Foods that’s more organic and maybe has less sugar. But the truth of the matter is, I have two very normal kids.”
You obviously have a busy schedule as a working mom. Are you able to find the time to workout?
“I feel like I need to carve out time during the week. When the kids are in school, it’s easy. I’m a big yoga person, I love yoga and I do two different kinds. I do a real sweaty kind of powerful yoga. You get this great workout. It’s exhausting and I’m sore so that’s one of my favorites to do. And the other one is Kundalini yoga. For me, it’s very meditative. Yes, you’re in poses but it’s a very different kind of yoga. It’s an important thing for the body, mind and soul. It’s not as sweaty or strenuous as power yoga. And because I have two little kids and a busy life and a lot going on, it really centers me and I feel like that’s the biggest gift that I can give to myself. If I can get one of those sessions in a week and then add to it a couple of the power yoga sessions then that’s the best or the most that I can ask for. And when the weather is nice, I like hiking and playing tennis. I love being outside. In the summertime, I like swimming and getting in the water as well.”