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Molly Ritterbeck

Jennifer Aniston Spills her Gorgeous Skin Tricks and Stay-Fit Secrets

Written on March 25, 2014 at 1:07 pm , by

Photo Courtesy of Aveeno

Jealous of Jen, much? With her year-round glow and killer body, it’s obvious why women (and men) swoon over her. Case in point: the pics that recently surfaced of the star vacationing in Mexico with her beau Justin Theroux: At 45, Aniston looks better and fitter than ever. And though many things have changed throughout the years (say, haircuts for example), one thing has remained the same: her respect for a solid skincare routine, including products by Aveeno. As the company’s ambassador, she recently narrated a series of short videos celebrating ingredients found in nature, highlighting their farm-to-formulation journey and how these actives can enhance your own natural beauty. We stole a few minutes with Aniston to chat about her involvement in the project and how she manages to look better and better as the years go by.

What drew you to becoming a brand ambassador for Aveeno?
“Well, it was just so organic and I’ve used Aveeno since I was in high school and so it just seemed like a really organic and easy relationship.”

Tell me a little bit about the “Beauty of Nature” project and why you wanted to be involved?
“Well, being a part of the Aveeno family, it was kind of the obvious go-to to have me narrate it and I wanted to do it because I thought it was an interesting element for the consumer to understand what goes in and how much detail is put into their products and how natural all of it is.”

Speaking of natural, everyone loves your effortless, natural look. How do you pull it off from a beauty perspective? 
“Oh my gosh, well I use so many different things. The main thing that helps with that is a lot of hydration, obviously, and simple, natural products. Also, being very careful about what you eat because all of that reflects. It’s the old saying, ‘You are what you eat.’ I think it’s reflected in your skin.”

Do you have one general type of product that you can’t live without?
“I love Chanel mascara and I love Chanel [Cosmetics] period. Those are really beautiful.”

So our readers really want to know, how do you stay in shape? 
“You know, I try to mix it up. I want to try Crossfit, I’m terrified of it, though. It’s very intense; very intimidating. I basically do a combination of three: I usually do my spin bike, I run and I do an elliptical—usually 15 minutes on each machine. And then I’ll do, if I have the luxury of time, about a half hour of yoga. Or I just do yoga and then there’s other times when I’ll do strength-training and that’s pretty intense. It’s kind of, what I would imagine, like a Crossfit, but it’s just basically working every part of your body against its own weight.”

Got it. So you like to switch it up?
“Yeah, because you can get bored doing the same thing. And I also think it’s really good taking a break once in a while from working out.”

We know you travel a lot for work. How do you manage to fit in time to exercise on the road?
“I just make the time. I just get up that extra hour and get it in there. It’s just such a game changer on your mood for the day. So I’ll make myself do it, but if I get down to the gym, I get down to the gym. Or if I bring my bands, you can do a lot of stuff in your room.”

Do you have any healthy eating strategies for when you’re traveling or if you’re on set?
“Oh, just a healthy, grilled clean protein and vegetables, of course. It’s pretty basic. I try to stay as light on oil as you can and salt, obviously, and no sugars.”

We always suggest packing healthy snacks in your bag so you have no excuses. Do you have any healthy snacks that you keep around?
“I do. I always have an apple with me and I have some walnuts for protein. And I sometimes throw a little protein bar in my bag.”

Celebrate Sisterhood during National Women’s History Month

Written on March 18, 2014 at 3:55 pm , by

March marks National Women’s History month, the perfect time to celebrate the strides we’ve made and get motivated to help women around the globe. Beauty companies are pitching in with products that empower women. Here, a few of our faves.

Bobbi Brown Pretty Powerful Mascara to benefit The Pretty Powerful Campaign for Women & Girls
Launched last year, the Pretty Powerful Campaign is a global initiative that celebrates the evolution of the brand’s message from confidence through makeup and empowering women and girls through education. It aims to help women by supporting educational or job skills’ training programs that provide them with the knowledge, skills and experience they need to overcome the inequities and disadvantages that far too many of them face every day. The Pretty Powerful Mascara ($25, bobbibroncosmetics.com) is an all-in-one formula that lengthens, thickens and defines without clumps or smearing throughout the day. It is available now and all proceeds in the U.S. benefit the Girl Rising Fund, a 501c3 fund operated by Tides Foundation, which drives resources to effective girl-empowerment programs in the developing world. If you’d like to find out more, check out the trailer to the inspiring documentary Girl Rising below:

 

 

Laura Mercier Bonne Mine Healthy Glow For Face & Cheeks Crème Colour Palette to benefit the Laura Mercier Ovarian Cancer Fund
Claudia Poccia, President and CEO of Gurwitch Products, the manufacturer and distributor of Laura Mercier cosmetics, and Laura Mercier, founder of the Laura Mercier cosmetics brand established the Laura Mercier Ovarian Cancer Fund in September 2012. Both Poccia and Mercier have loved ones who were affected by ovarian cancer, which is the fifth leading cause of cancer death among American women according to the American Cancer Society. The mission is to raise awareness, fund research and educational efforts that will help diagnose, treat and support women with ovarian cancer to prevent more women from dying from the disease. The Bonne Mine Palette ($48, lauramercier.com) is a must-have for any makeup bag. Featuring a cream bronzer, two cream blushes and two highlighters, it’s the perfect product to create that “no makeup” glow that looks soft and natural. 100% of the profits from sales are donated to the Laura Mercier Ovarian Cancer Fund.

Yes To Carrots Yes to Movement Project to benefit You!
The Yes to Carrots brand is making March all about you! In honor of National Women’s History month, they’ve launched the Yes to Movement, a year-long project aimed at encouraging everyone to spread the power of positivity by saying “yes” to something for yourself, your loved ones or for your community. Their goal is to get fans to share one million Yes Moments with the hashtags #YESTOMOVEMENT and #YESWOMEN. Simply snap a selfie on Twitter or Instagram to inspire, empower and get each other to say “yes” more by saying “yes” to yourself first. They’ll choose one lucky lady and help her overcome her fear of saying “yes.” She’ll receive the resources (and all our support) to empower her to face it head on.

Let’s hear it for the girls!

Tracee Ellis Ross Rocks Bold Lips While Working Out—Would You?

Written on March 17, 2014 at 4:32 pm , by

Photo: Courtesy of Tracee Ellis Ross via Instagram

Tracee Ellis Ross, best known for her roles in the series, Girlfriends, and most recently, in the BET sitcom, Reed Between the Lines is transforming more than just her body in the gym—she’s changing up her beauty look, too. She recently hit up her fitness center sporting a bright red lip and says it helps her feel pretty no matter how much she sweats. She’s even taking the notion to Instagram by encouraging others to snap pics of themselves getting #RedLipFit. And although we go to the gym to do serious work, it got us thinking: why can’t you look and feel pretty while working out? We’d obviously skip heavy foundation that could clog pores, but maybe the idea of an easy-to-apply bright lip or a fun mani can give you a boost when you’re busting out reps? Besides, the gym is that one place where you’re surrounded by mirrors almost everywhere you turn. So what do you think?

Favorite Find Friday: Flywheel Label Collection

Written on March 14, 2014 at 9:00 am , by

So, yes, this falls more under the fashion umbrella, but it’s fun to mix things up sometimes on the blog (after all, fashion and beauty go hand-in-hand). Plus, I am just that excited about this new line that I couldn’t hold back. It’s no secret that one of my go-to workouts is a Spin class at Flywheel. I am non-discriminatory when it comes to a sweat session and will try almost anything once, and maybe even twice, but my heart always ends up back with Fly. So you can imagine my joy when they recently launched their first-ever Flywheel Label Collection (prices vary, bloomingdales.com and Flywheel studios). Featuring both performancewear and more casual sportswear, the fun, vintage-with-an-edge collection caters to the on-the-go life of a fitness buff. What’s even more exciting? Bloomingdale’s has picked up a few key pieces from the women’s collection to be sold at select Bloomingdale’s stores across the country including the New York City 59th street flagship as well as on their retail website. So check out a few of our faves below and snatch them up ASAP. Because really, what’s a killer workout if you can’t proudly #fitbrag about it on your sleeve. Right?

Favorite Find Friday: Noya Classic Lip Balm

Written on March 7, 2014 at 1:47 pm , by

A good lip balm is like good skincare for your lips—it’s the perfect base for your look. We all know how bad foundation and blush can look on dry, rough skin. The same goes for a bold lip color or shiny gloss over chapped, flaky lips—not a pretty look. I’ve recently been slathering on Noya Classic Lipbalm ($4, noyabeauty.com). Not only does it keep my lips feeling soft and supple, it’s made of just four all-natural, kosher ingredients: extra virgin olive oil, coconut oil, beeswax and organic stevia. Sounds a little like your kitchen pantry, right? It’s one of the most natural balms out there, which makes me feel good since we inadvertently end up consuming some of our lip products. It comes in three other flavors as well: Vanilla, Cherry and Spearmint and for every lip balm purchased, Noya will donate one to a homeless person in need through The National Health Care for the Homeless. It’s easy to take something as basic as lip balm for granted, but now you can treat yourself and help someone else in need, all at the same time.

Let’s Talk Pits…And How To Make Ours Look And Feel Prettier

Written on March 5, 2014 at 3:05 pm , by

Our underarms are often one of the most-overlooked places on our bodies. Besides shaving and swiping on deodorant, we don’t usually treat our armpits to any special skin care routine. Dove Advanced Care Deodorant is setting out to change that. They’re launching a new campaign—“Dear Armpit”—to encourage women to finally speak out about the way they feel about this mysterious place. To celebrate, they are offering women tips on how to give themselves a “PitiCure” (more on that below) and helping them to see their armpits in a new light. You can join in on the conversation, too, by tweeting your thoughts to @Dove with the hashtag #deararmpit. We recently stole some time with NYC-based dermatologist, Dr. Ellen Marmur, who has partnered with Dove to improve women’s underarm care. Read on for her expert tips.

Let’s talk about how the “Dear Armpit” campaign is helping raise awareness for taking care of your underarms.
“So we’re launching this campaign by having real women put on sleeveless blouses and sleeveless tops and taking a photo in a photo booth and raising their armpits and getting a ‘PitiCure.’ As a dermatologist, I have been telling my patients for so many years how to take care of their skin, and the armpit skin has its own list of issues that no one talks about. Every time people shave, especially if they’re using an old razor, they are stripping away about 36 perent of their skin’s surface cells, not just the hair, so they’re stripping their skin and causing irritation. Then you’ve got the underarm sweat, which has salt and enzymes, and you’ve got any debris from your clothing and things rubbing in that area that can lead to rashes, which can cause the skin to get thicker, which we call alligator skin. Once you get any irritation or redness, that can lead to blemishes, meaning brown discoloration, in the underarm and I think that leads people to feel really embarrassed and ashamed about wearing certain clothing.”

So what exactly is a “PitiCure” and how can someone give themselves one at home?
“So the ‘PitiCure’ is Dove’s way of making it really lovely and easy to think about. The idea is that it’s like a pedicure, where you take special care of your feet, which also used to be considered ugly; the ‘PitiCure’ is a way to take care of your armpits. It is a three-step process, where you might do it three times a week.

1. In the shower gently wash, not scrub, the underarms to get rid of any impurities or debris using your favorite cleanser.

2. Rinse with warm water and pat dry. With my patients and in general, people forget to dry their skin thoroughly after their bath or shower and they leave water droplets under their arms that can trap water and lead to further problems with the skin.

3. Apply Dove Advanced Care Deodorant ($5, drugstores) which is a multitasker and I think this is the ‘Aha!’ moment which is that your underarm care can have a multi-tasker: a deodorant, an antiperspirant and the nutrient moisture. Swipe it on just three times and that is enough to give you 48 hours of protection.

I think it doesn’t occur to most people to actually moisturize their underarms but this is where you can prevent those issues. No one ever tells you how much deodorant to put on but if you do, say, five swipes, you’re going to end up with residue which can irritate you as well, physically, and if you do only one swipe, you’re not getting enough of the product.”

Is there any danger with deodorant penetrating the skin’s surface?
“That’s a really good question. I want to go back to the basics, where skin’s number one function is to protect. So the skin has all these myths about it, like that it breathes or that it absorbs; nothing absorbs into the skin easily. So, products that you put onto your skin, they go into the top dead surface cells, but they actually don’t penetrate down into the vessels, where the blood vessels would absorb it into the body. And even the tiny ducts, they have their own skin-lining them, so you’re still not absorbing the product. I asked that same question and I looked into the data, because I also want to be counseling in a safe way, so we’ve been looking into studies. The ingredient that has led to controversy is the aluminum ingredient and it’s found in the body, but it’s considered to be in the body because of the foods we eat, and that does make sense that you’re eating food that goes into the gut and the gut’s main job is to absorb, but they weren’t able to detect any absorption, especially around the armpit where you would get it from applying deodorant.”

And what if you have any nicks from shaving? Is there any risk from applying deodorant over that?
“The deodorant has a powder ingredient in it, and powder itself causes bleeding to stop. Like if you cut your finger and put baby powder, or even baking powder, it actually causes the blood to clot. So it is safe in that sense, it’ll stop the bleeding and the moisturization and glycerin that’s in the nutrient moisture will actually help it heal faster. If it’s a huge gash, see your dermatologist. You definitely don’t want to try to fix something like that yourself.”

 

Favorite Find Friday: Axe Peace Shower Gel & Shampoo

Written on February 28, 2014 at 9:00 am , by

No matter how prepared I am for beauty-related emergencies (my boyfriend jokingly refers to me as Mary Poppins because of all the crazy stuff I can pull out of my purse at any time), sometimes I get caught in a jam. I only live two blocks away from my guy so I rarely have to keep much at his place. But the other day I was too lazy to run home and shower and figured there was no harm in sneaking in a rinse there. (Keep in mind: this is a dude’s apartment; a bachelor pad, if you will.) Well, I quickly realized the risk I took when I glanced at the product selection (or lack thereof) in the shower and only found a half-used bar of soap and an economy-sized bottle of 2-in-1 Pert Plus (!). Luckily, I remembered coming back from an Axe launch event where they introduced new men’s products so I stashed them under his sink. I grabbed the Axe Peace Shower Gel and Shampoo ($4 and $6, drugstores) and started to suds up. Immediately, I was pleasantly surprised by the light yet musky scent. With top notes of warm citrus and nutmeg that finish with the soothing smell of cedarwood and amber, it’s masculine but not at all in an overpowering way—I swear! I love using it just as much as “girly” stuff I keep in my shower, and I even got my BF hooked, too. So now, when I shower at his place, we end up smelling the same. Strange? Maybe, but it sure beats that questionable bar of soap.

Jennifer Hudson On her Role with Weight Watchers and How Her Short Hair Motivates Her to Work Out

Written on February 21, 2014 at 11:38 am , by

Jennifer Hudson has come a long way since she first graced the stage as a finalist in the third season of American Idol. As a Grammy-award winning singer, she went on to star in the silver screen blockbuster Dreamgirls, which earned her a Golden Globe, SAG award and an Oscar for Best Supporting Actress. After the birth of her first child, she announced she was joining Weight Watchers in 2010 and has since been a success story (dropping from a size 16 to a 6) and spokesperson for the brand.  She discusses her journey in her book I Got This: How I Changed My Ways and Lost What Weighed Me Down ($15, amazon.com). We nabbed some time with her and Weight Watchers’ chief scientific officer, Karen Miller Kovach as they awarded Baltimore with a healthy community grant on behalf of Weight Watchers.

Tell us about what you guys are doing today in Baltimore.
Miller-Kovach: “Weight Watchers is and always has been very committed in terms of ensuring that our program and services are available throughout the world because we’re not just a United States company. We decided to formalize a little bit and so the healthy community grant came out of that and has been awarded to three cities. It was a highly competitive grant process and was judged by a group of independent judges. So a small, a large and a medium city were selected. We’re in Baltimore today, which is the large city that was selected. And celebrating their record and proven ability to provide, within the community, a holistic approach to health and well-being. So, this is a celebration, I think for the community, it’s a celebration for weight watchers to recognize and renew our commitment to healthy living, to weight management and to being an active player in reversing the tide of obesity that exists in our nation.”

Awesome! And Jennifer what does it mean to you to be involved in this type of program?
Hudson: “I think it’s amazing! One of my new year’s resolutions was to help change lives and that’s what this will do. It will give people a new start and direction. So I’m excited to be a part of it!”

What are some healthy habits that you’ve adopted in achieving your health goals?
“I think all around just making healthier choices and decisions. Drinking water, I’m not a water girl but I have to do that. Because that’s important and knowing what’s important for the body not eating just for fun. Being conscious of what I’m taking in.”

What type of workouts helped you achieve and maintain your transformation?
“What I like most, if I’m going to workout, is being outside. I love being outside! I love being able to enjoy things while I’m working out. So I love jogging because I want to be out. I’ve noticed that if I’m in a nice climate, it inspires me to workout more and be more active. Since I’m in Chicago it’s much colder, so you might not feel like working out which makes it more difficult. So when I can embrace the beautiful air, I love to get out and go running. And just most importantly, making sure I’m enjoying whatever I’m doing. Whether it’s doing squats, whether it’s jogging, whether it’s jumping rope, riding a bike, I like to make it fun so I want to do it again. You want to carry it on. So if you’re enjoying it you’ll do it over and over again. I like to make it fun!”

Have you found to have any snacks that give you energy throughout the day, or to have before or after a workout?
“Actually I love a banana! That’s my favorite, if you want to call that a snack! It’s good because it gets that fiber in there, gets your system going and gives you plenty of energy and it’s no points! So that’s something that I love to have. Before I eat anything in the morning I make sure I have a banana or something because it’s filling and you don’t ever want to be too hungry. Because you don’t want to go to the gym, do a workout and then you’re starving, then you’re going to eat anything. If you have something that’s quick, you can grab out of your bag. To me it’s the most fulfilling fruit there is. Eat that up and I’m good to go!”

In terms of your beauty routine, are there any makeup tricks or hair tricks that you like to do before a night out or something to boost your confidence?
“Well, I cut my hair and I think that’s like a weight loss goal for people. A lot of times it’s a goal when you’re going through weight loss. You know it’s like ‘if I ever lose weight I’m going to cut my hair!’ So I cut my hair so I can show off my facial structure and things like that. It’s fun being able to experiment with the new me and discovering who I am now. Like I had the big girl look down, no I’m like ‘okay, what’s my style now?’ Like re-discovering myself and it’s fun! You know, every girl wants to play dress up! So I’m getting to play dress up with myself and find my new self!”

Have you found it to be easier to maintain and to style?
“It is, I think it’s fun and it’s funky! It’s a lot of things but it’s definitely easier to maintain than longer hair. And it inspires me to workout more because I can’t hide behind the hair! If you’ve got short hair you can see my arms and my back, you know what I mean? It inspires me to push even further to work out!”

 

Favorite Find Friday: Ralph Lauren Romance Fragrance

Written on February 14, 2014 at 11:38 am , by

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

When I was younger, I changed my perfume after every breakup (such a teenage-angsty thing to do—I know). There was just something about a fragrance that was so closely tied to the memories of the relationship, that after it ended, I wanted a fresh start. And a fresh scent. But since I’ve been very happily attached for the past six years (!), I’ve had to come up with a new smell strategy. It was around the time when my guy and I first started dating that I began crushing on Ralph Lauren Romance Eau de Parfum ($68, ralphlauren.com). Described as a fragrance that “captures the timeless essence of falling in love,” it seemed like the perfect match for the start of a budding romance. I loved the sensual florals, like white violet and sun goddess rose that created seductive chemistry when combined with the musk of exotic woods. As time went on, I fell more and more in love with my beau and my perfume. But the winter melted into spring and I needed to switch things up (in the fragrance department, not the BF one!) so I swapped in the summer edition—Ralph Lauren Romance Summer Blossom Eau de Toilette Spray ($74, ralphlauren.com). A lighter, fruitier version of the original, this sunny and playful scent has notes of mandarin and waterlily that lightly flutter on top of the woodsy, vanilla base. One spritz gives you that pit-of-your-stomach butterfly feeling and ignites those summer love sparks, even in a long-term relationship. I continue to alternate between the two and since I’m loyal to the collection, I’m anxiously awaiting the latest launch, Midnight Romance coming out this April. So after years of testing out all those other guys perfumes that weren’t a perfect fit, I’m blissfully happy to have finally found the one for me. And today, I thought it was the appropriate timing to share this ode to oud with all of you. Happy Valentine’s Day!

Favorite Find Friday: Suave Moroccan Infusion Body Lotion

Written on February 7, 2014 at 8:00 am , by

Let’s just say this has been one rough winter for us here in the northeast. There have been polar vortexes, followed by apocalyptic snow storms, followed by plummeting temperatures, followed by rain, sleet, hail, slush—the kind of stuff you remember from the 90s. I’m from northeast PA, not too far outside the city but at a much higher elevation so this is nothing new to me. But sadly, my skin has adapted to the closer-to-sea-level altitude of NYC and it has not been happy with the forecast. White, dry and flaky: my skin’s condition sounds more and more like the weather that’s causing it as each wintery day passes. I needed some serious help so I grabbed Suave Professionals Moroccan Infusion Body Lotion ($5, walgreens.com). I slather it on right out of the shower (waiting more than just a few minutes can mean less hydration) and it sinks in deep to hydrate extra dry skin. It’s infused with authentic Moroccan argan oil, a lightweight ingredient known to be rich in nutrients and antioxidants, so after just a few days of using it, I noticed my skin looking more radiant than before. The effects last all day so I know I’m covered until I reapply before bed (seriously, my skin drinks this stuff up.) And since those meteorology-savvy little groundhogs Punxsutawney Phil and Staten Island Chuck both saw their shadows this year, predicting six more weeks of this arctic assault in the northeast, I guess I’ll be relying on every last drop of this skin saver until spring.

On a side note, if you’re like me and dreading this weather, but wishing for brighter days, Suave has teamed up with the dapper celebrity fashion stylist, Brad Goreski, to help make your dreams come true. Just tweet your wish (which can be anything from silky, glowing skin to a sunny vacay) to @SuaveBeauty with hashtag #RadiantWishes to be entered into the sweepstakes or head to the Suave Beauty Facebook page to enter the Radiant Wishes Sweepstakes for a chance to win Suave Professional Moroccan infusion products, a spa day or a trip to sunny Los Angeles. A few lucky winners’ wishes will be fulfilled!