Written on November 22, 2013 at 11:14 am , by Molly Ritterbeck
After months of working on a short hair makeover story (check it out in the February issue!) and toying with the idea of cutting my long locks shorter, I recently chopped off six inches of my hair. This apparently was hardly noticeable to some (ahem, boyfriend who thinks “it doesn’t really look that different”) but a really big deal to me. And though I’m loving my new cut, styling it has been quite an adjustment. No longer can I sleep in a bun and wake up with effortless waves (tragic, I know). Since I prefer my naturally straight hair to have some texture, this posed a problem. So, I’ve recently been spending some quality time with my curling iron. After years of working in the beauty industry, I consider myself pretty handy with one, but even the most-skilled pro can sometimes struggle with getting the dreaded dent. Unless—that is—you’re working with my new favorite tool, Babyliss Pro Nano Tools 1” Rotating Curling Iron ($60, naimies.com). This iron is so easy to use, it actually makes my styling session faster. It has a rotating base, so you don’t have to nearly break your wrist trying to create a curl, and a super thin clip plate so you can chose not to use it if you prefer the feel of a wand. Plus, it’s made of a hybrid mineral complex (a mix of nano ceramic and Japanese kiyoskei) so it smoothes your hair, leaving each strand shiny and frizz-free. With 40 different heat settings up to 430°F, it’s perfect for any hair texture. Seriously, this thing is so awesome; your hair practically curls itself! (Now wouldn’t that be nice…)
Written on November 15, 2013 at 9:00 am , by Molly Ritterbeck
This is the time of year when my schedule gets crazy hectic (I’m sure you agree). I just returned from a whirlwind trip to Berlin, Germany (traveling’s fun but stressful) and with the holidays right around the corner, deadlines get tighter, the calendar fills up and getting ready on the run is not out of the ordinary. Half of the battle is just being organized and for makeup junkies like us, that can be tough. But I found a little lifesaver amidst the chaos: Sonia Kashuk Completely Organized Makeup Bag ($15, target.com). It comes in three different sizes (grande, classic and petite) and looks like a chic makeup bag on the outside, but it’s like having a personal organizer on the inside. The multiple-sized compartments neatly hold all of your essentials—from your cell phone and keys to makeup brushes and eyeliners. This pouch can be tossed and turned yet it still keeps everything in place. Plus, it’s made of a stain-resistant material so when one of my favorite lipsticks broke in it this morning (wah!), I just wiped it down with a damp cloth and it was as good as new. A definite must-have for any girl on-the-go.
Written on November 1, 2013 at 11:51 am , by Fitness Magazine
I know everyone claims this, but my skin is super sensitive so I’m careful with my makeup routine as to not disturb—what I like to call—the red-faced monster. That’s why I love when skincare companies venture into color because you get the best of both worlds. After some trial and error, I found the perfect match for my skin came in a pretty gold tube labeled Dr. Jart+ Premium Beauty Balm with SPF 45 ($39, sephora.com). Its airy texture glides on so smoothly, you can barely feel it, yet it provides enough coverage to mask imperfections. Plus, it has a high level of broad-spectrum UVA/UVB sun protection (a must). I apply it every morning, and especially when I ski because it protects my face from the glare of the sun on the slopes (yet I still look like a fresh-faced snow bunny when I take a break in the lodge with my friends!).
—Chelsea Burns, beauty intern
Written on October 25, 2013 at 9:00 am , by Fitness Magazine
Winter is right around the corner and I can already feel my skin cringing at thought of the harsh elements. So when I saw the Fresh Crème Ancienne Ultimate Nourishing Honey Mask ($130, Fresh.com) I couldn’t help wanting to slather in on my face ASAP. This luxe pot of sweet goodness, which contains two and a half tablespoons of pure honey, melts into skin to deliver up to six hours (according to the company) of nourishment. It’s also packed with Echinacea extract, which helps improve skin’s resilience to environmental aggressors like pollution and smog (a big plus for big city dwellers!). While I’m leery of thick masks due to my oily, acne-prone skin, this one didn’t clog my pores or trigger a breakout, since honey is actually a natural antibiotic and works to pull out dirt and grime while also healing existing acne marks. Before bed, I smooth it over cleansed, damp skin and leave it on for ten minutes before rinsing with warm water. I wake up with a radiant glow. Warning: the mask’s super-sweet honey fragrance may cause a midnight snack craving!
Written on October 18, 2013 at 11:51 am , by Molly Ritterbeck
Ever since I read here that mascara formulas haven’t changed much in 50 years, it verified my suspicion that when it comes to lash lengtheners, the magic is in the wand. So when my go-to tube recently met its three-month expiration date, I began searching for the perfect replacement. I’ve been testing several but ended up feeling a lot like Goldilocks—one has too many bristles, the next doesn’t have enough; none of them were just right—until I came across Lorac Cobra Mascara ($20, loraccosmetics.com). The unique brush design mimics the shape of a cobra’s head: in addition to a subtle curve for extra lift and curl, it expands wider then tapers off at the end. The sides can be used for separating and defining while the tightly packed bristles offer buildable volume. It’s everything you want in a mascara all rolled into one. And although the formula is made up of the stand-by combo of wax and pigment, this one also has keratin and vitamin E to condition and lengthen your lashes. I never thought I’d be so comfortable putting a cobra head near my eye, but the results sure are charming.
Written on October 11, 2013 at 9:00 am , by Molly Ritterbeck
With intricate attention to detail and whimsical touches, Marchesa (made up of Bristish-born Georgina Chapman and Keren Craig) is one of the most sought after labels for elegant evening wear. I would love to slip on one of their dreamy frocks but I (like most) can’t afford a gown (I’ll have to live vicariously through stars like Kerry Washington and Blake Lively who often don the label while walking the red carpet). But now, thanks to Revlon, we can all get a little taste of the luxurious couture house. The two brands teamed up to create a limited edition collection of textured Revlon by Marchesa 3D Jewel Appliqués ($10, drugstores) inspired by Marchesa’s signature designs. With eight different patterns, there’s a motif for everyone. I chose Gilded Mosaic and not only did the stickers hold up on my nails for a week (impressive!), I racked up a ton of compliments, most recently from the bouncer of the bar I went to last night when I handed him my ID. If a dude notices your nails, you know you’ve got something special.
Written on September 27, 2013 at 11:01 am , by Molly Ritterbeck
Once a month, I see my derm for a glycolic peel to keep my skin looking glowy and to help keep acne at bay. He swabs the concentrated gel on my face and after just a few minutes, my skin looks refreshed and feels baby soft. So that got me thinking— maybe I should care for the skin on my body in the same way as I care for the skin on my face. Enter: Cane + Austin Retexturizing Treatment Scrub ($42, caneandaustin.com). With a 10% concentration of glycolic and gentle micro-beads, this super scrubber exfoliates on a chemical and a physical level. I keep it in my shower, massage it into my arms and legs in a circular motion and then let it sit for a few minutes before rinsing. The rough patches on my elbows and knees are instantly smoother and my skin in general looks brighter. Insider tip: if you’re like me and occasionally like to dabble with self-tanner, this product doubles as a great prep before application or as an eraser to help blend noticeable streaks.
Written on September 20, 2013 at 1:48 pm , by Molly Ritterbeck
This Sunday marks the first day of fall, aka my absolute favorite season. Don’t get me wrong; there are great things about spring, summer and winter, but fall is the quarter my birthday falls in, it reminds me of being back home in Pennsylvania where the leaves turn vibrant shades of yellow, orange and red, and it means I officially have the green light to indulge in all pumpkin everything. Whether it’s a flavored coffee in the morning or a spiced treat for dessert, the tastes and smells of pumpkin are comforting during the chillier autumn months. Last night, I swapped out all of the bright, summery decorations in my apartment for more rustic options—burnt orange flowers in a mason jar, twine-embellished frames and Illume’s Heirloom Pumpkin Metallic Knob Tin Candle ($24, illumecandles.com). It’s luxe metallic amber tin, which glows when lit, makes any room feel instantly cozier. As the rich scent of creamy pumpkin pureé mixes with warm vanilla, dark brown sugar and cinnamon spice, you’d swear your mom had snuck in and been baking all day. So until Thanksgiving, it looks like I’ll be relying on burning these candles every night to keep homesickness at bay.
Written on September 13, 2013 at 12:28 pm , by Molly Ritterbeck
I’ve never had perfect skin but I’ve always tried to fake it. Armed with an arsenal of foundation, concealer and powder, I could apply my “no-makeup” makeup routine in my sleep. But one thing I’ve never added to the mix was a face primer. Though I’m addicted to eye shadow primer as mentioned here, most versions I’ve tried for the face have felt too greasy until I snagged Clinique Superprimer Universal Face Primer ($27, clinique.com) from the beauty closet. I tossed it in my makeup bag and smoothed it over my face after my moisturizer but before foundation. I was stunned by how hydrating and lightweight it felt. It evens out my skin texture without that heavy silicone feeling I’ve experienced in the past. My makeup goes on better and lasts longer with this as a base. I use the Universal shade, which is colorless, but it comes in five additional shades that help counteract specific issues like redness, sallowness and dullness. I may never feel like I have flawless skin (does anyone, really?) but I’m happy to keep fooling everyone with this complexion perfector.
Written on September 6, 2013 at 9:56 am , by Fitness Magazine
You know that lit-from-within glow often spotted on the cheeks of your favorite celebrity or magazine cover star (Fitness’ cover girl and rumored girlfriend to Derek Jeter, Hannah Davis, is working it on our September issue)? Well, I’ve found a dream product that delivers the perfect pink flush reminiscent of an after-workout glow minus the sweat-soaked clothes. Nars Blush in Gaiety ($29, narscosmetics.com) is an in-your-face hot pink that at first glance appears a bit intimidating. But don’t be thrown by the nearly-neon hue because once you sweep this onto the apples of your cheeks, you will be amazed at how natural and flattering this shade is. It goes on sheer and doesn’t overpower your whole look, so you have the freedom to play up bold eye makeup or a strong lip color. So even if you’re not a cover model, or Derek Jeter isn’t the one making you blush, you can still fake a flirty look with this pretty powder.
—Karee Hackel, beauty intern