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FITNESS staff

Favorite Find Friday: Matrix Biolage ExquisiteOil Shampoo and Conditioner

Written on November 30, 2012 at 4:51 pm , by

I’m a big fan of Matrix hair products (they smell fresh but subtle!) and usually rely on their Biolage Volumathérapie shampoo and conditioner ($15, $16, biolage.com for salons) to give my long hair extra lift. But I also believe in switching up your shampoo and conditioner every now and then, so when mine recently ran low, I decided to try one of Matrix’s latest formulas, Biolage ExquisiteOil Micro-Oil Shampoo and Oil Crème Conditioner ($17, $18, biolage.com for salons). Both contain moringa oil, which is packed with antioxidants to protect hair from damage and fatty acids to coat each strand with moisture. My hair looks and feels shiny and silky—and surprisingly, the oils didn’t weigh it down. Bottom line: I can’t stop touching it!

Favorite Find Friday: CoverGirl Outlast Stay Brilliant Nail Gloss

Written on November 23, 2012 at 9:57 am , by

Our Nutrition Editor, Juno DeMelo, loves the look of a shiny manicure but can never go more than a day without her polish chipping. While we were working on a nail story, she nabbed one of the new CoverGirl Outlast Stay Brilliant Nail Glosses in Toasted Almond ($5, drugstore.com) from the beauty department and hasn’t stopped raving about it since:

“This is day four!” DeMelo bragged. “Granted, I asked my husband to be on dish duty this week, but still: This is the longest a manicure has ever lasted for me, and that’s counting salon ones. It’s also the glossiest looking one I’ve ever had. All this and I didn’t even use a base coat!” she said.

Favorite Find Friday: Klorane Extra Gentle Dry Shampoo

Written on September 28, 2012 at 11:26 am , by

OK, so I admit, this isn’t necessarily a new “find” for me, but it’s become a classic product that I always rely on. And while we’re on the topic of coming clean, I have another dirty (literally!) little secret: I hate washing my hair. Now don’t judge me, but I only wash my hair twice a week, which poses a serious problem when I’m working out everyday. Klorane Extra Gentle Dry Shampoo ($18, drugstore.com) eliminates sweaty strands in between washes without forcing me to totally restyle my hair. I just throw on a cap when I hit the shower and afterwards, spray the dry shampoo into my roots and comb through. Another trick: I’ll spray it in before bed and twist my hair up into a bun to add a little texture and prevent it from getting flat and greasy while I sleep. Then I wake up to perfectly tousled “bed-head” waves. I keep a bottle in my bathroom, at my desk, at my boyfriend’s apartment and a mini-size version in my gym bag because, seriously, it’s that good!

How I Beat Those Annoying Bumps On My Arms

Written on September 14, 2012 at 2:12 pm , by

By Daniella Araujo, beauty intern
For as long as I can remember, I’ve had little red bumps on the backs of my upper arms. During the winter, they would also pop up on my thighs. I didn’t know what caused them or what they were, but I wanted to get rid of them. I googled “small bumps on my arms” and results for Keratosis Pilaris— a common genetic follicular disorder manifested by the appearance of rough bumps on the skin—came up. Luckily, it’s not a serious condition, but it’s an eyesore. Though there is no cure, there are ways to treat it. After trial and error, I finally found the perfect KP skincare regime that helped me get rid of the bumps and patches of rough skin:

  • Soap swap. Harsh sulfates in soap dry out your skin and cause further irritation if you’re prone to KP. I switched out my go-to bar soap for a moisturizing body wash. Look for one that’s fragrance-free and infused with lotion. I like Olay Ultra Moisture Body Wash ($8, drugstores); it’s soap-free and contains shea butter for extra moisture.

DERMADoctor KP Duty Scrub helps slough away dry bumps. (Photo courtesy of DERMADoctor)

  • Scrub and hydrate.Exfoliation and hydration are the keys to getting rid of those icky bumps. Giving your skin a good scrub removes the excess keratin buildup, but it’s important to replenish your skin with a rich body lotion to keep it from drying out. My routine started with DERMAdoctor KP Duty Body Scrub ($44, dermadoctor.com), which has glycolic and lactic acids to slough away the top layer of dead skin. Then I applied DERMAdoctor KP Duty Dermatologist Moisturizing Therapy ($36, dermadoctor.com) to my arms and thighs twice a day.
  • Consistency is key. After two months, my bumps began to disappear and I simplified my regimen so that it was easier to commit long-term. I still start with Olay body wash but I only exfoliate once a week. I follow that with Amlactin Moisturizing Body Lotion ($15, drugstores), which keeps my skin soft and smooth.

What’s The Craziest Beauty Trend You’ve Tried?

Written on January 11, 2012 at 12:14 pm , by

Black lipstick, crimped hair, false lashes, the Snooki “pouf”: Most of us are guilty of taking beauty experimentation a little too far. We asked FITNESS staffers to spill the craziest trend or treatment they’ve tried:

“One of the DIY hair masks recommended in a beauty magazine that involved mashed banana and honey. The instructions didn’t mention that you had to mash the banana into a liquid, and I ended up with small pieces of banana in my hair. I had to shower and rinse about five times before it all came out—surely stripping away any of the conditioning power the mask was supposed to have!” —Karla Walsh, editorial assistant

“I’ve tried it all (lash extensions, neon eyeliner, nail patterns, a four-handed massage– you name it!), but recently I’ve been obsessed with tinting my brows. Giving extra definition to your brows by temporarily darkening them really makes a difference and helps to frame your face. I go to the Boom Boom Brow Bar or the Benefit Cosmetics Boutique in NYC.” — Eleanor Langston, beauty director

“A fish pedicure! My cousin’s spa offered the pedicures where you dip your feet in a tank with tiny garra rufa fish. It was ticklish and weird at first, but after a few minutes you got used to feeling the light bites. I think I’ll stick to regular pedicures, though.” —Marianne Magno, associate web editor

“Putting toothpaste on a pimple overnight as you sleep, and it’s supposed to disappear by morning! I have tried this and it actually worked. Unless it was just a fluke!” —Jenna Autuori-Dedić, fitness editor

“Bright, Jersey Shore-esque, press-on acrylic nails. They aren’t something I’d typically wear, but they’re fun for that week that they last.” —Grace Murney, photo intern

“Back in middle school, during the time when funky makeup brands like Urban Decay and Hard Candy had just launched, I thought it was a good idea to wear almost-black lipstick. Every single day. Definitely not the most flattering look on a 13-year-old— or anyone!” —April Franzino, associate beauty editor

Tell us: What’s the craziest beauty trend you’ve tried?

—By Leah Cayson, beauty intern

Staffer Beauty Snoop: Fashion Director Argy Koutsothanasis

Written on December 15, 2011 at 8:03 am , by

Next up in our Staffer Beauty Snoop series, fashionable and fiery Fashion Director Argy Koutsothanasis spills her tried-and-true tips for looking put-together from head to toe:

Describe your beauty style in three words or less: Hair-obsessed! You can have the best outfit, shoes, bag, etc., but if your hair is stringy, unkempt or worse, if you’re sporting a style from the “Friends” era, you instantly lose your style credibility. The reverse is also true: A killer hair cut with attitude and of-the-moment-style will instantly give your wardrobe a boost. So shop at Target but never skimp on your hair!
What are the three beauty products you can’t live without? Shu Uemura Eyelash Curler, Phyto Phytomist Instant Hydrating Conditioner and Bumble & Bumble Does it All Styling Spray.
What’s your beauty routine in the morning? I wash my face with Neutrogena Grapefruit Face Wash, then I lightly swipe my skin with DDF Glycolic Toner and finish off by applying Neutrogena Healthy Skin Anti-Wrinkle Cream-Night Formula all over my face. I also take Phyto Phytophanere Dietary Supplement for Hair and Nails.
At night?  I  cleanse my face and neck with Triaz Face Cloths.
Post-workout? I run every morning before getting ready for work, so my post-workout routine is my morning routine.
What beauty product or treatment instantly makes you feel good? My weekly mani/pedi.
What’s the best beauty tip you’ve ever received (or thought of yourself)? The best advice I ever got was not to wash my hair everyday. I wash it one to two  times per week, and it’s healthier and stronger than it’s ever been! The funny thing is that it no longer gets oily. Since  I have wavy hair, I just prop it up in a high bun for my morning run and when I let it down, the waves look full and healthy— no blow-dry time required!

—By Jaclyn Smock, beauty intern

Staffer Beauty Snoop: Associate Photo Editor Karina Dearwood

Written on December 1, 2011 at 11:20 am , by

This week, we asked Associate Photo Editor Karina Dearwood to spill her beauty must-haves and secrets for an effortless look:

Describe your beauty style in three words or less: No-fuss and natural!
What are the three beauty products you can’t live without? Origins Starting Over Moisturizer with Mimosa, Dior Addict Lip Polish in Fresh Expert and Mally Double Ended Mascara.
What’s your beauty routine in the morning? I use Aveeno Baby Wash & Shampoo for a cleanser, followed by my Origins moisturizer. If I’m wearing my hair curly, I load up on the Matrix Smootherapie Leave-in Cream to fight frizz. If it’s straight, I give it a couple brushes. I finish with a few coats of mascara and lip gloss then I’m good to go!
At Night? Origins A Perfect World Cream Cleanser (I’m obsessed with this brand!) followed by Finacea Prescription Gel to fight problem areas once I go to bed. My favorite night indulgence is to put on foot lotion followed by fuzzy socks!
Post-workout? I usually exercise in the evenings, so after the gym I’ll take a shower and finish up with my nightly routine. 
What beauty product or treatment instantly makes you feel good? A blowout at home or at a salon makes me feel ultra-glam!
What’s the best beauty tip you’ve ever received (or thought of yourself)? The key to wearing makeup is to make it look like you’re not wearing any at all!


—By Jaclyn Smock, beauty intern

Staffer Beauty Snoop: Fashion Intern Cindy Park

Written on November 17, 2011 at 2:42 pm , by

In this week’s Staffer Beauty Snoop, super-chic Fashion Intern Cindy Park shares the products and tips that keep her looking polished on the go:

Describe your beauty style in three words or less: Consistent and simple
What are the three beauty products you cant live without?:Neutrogena Make-up Removing Wipes, C.O. Bigelow Rose Salve and the Clarisonic Mia.
What’s your beauty routine in the morning?: I use my Clarisonic to cleanse, then sweep on Origins Purifying Tonic, apply Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Oil-Free Moisturizer and top it off with an Aveeno sunscreen.
Post-workout?: I wipe off sweat and grime with Shiseido Pureness Refreshing Cleansing Wipes.
What beauty product or treatment instantly makes you feel good?: Boscia Luminizing Black Mask: When the mask dries up and I peel it off, I feel like I’m taking off a layer of dull skin and am left with a cleaner, fresher face. I also love Bobbi Brown Creamy Lipcolor in Pale Plum. It gives me the perfect pop of color when I want to look more awake.
What’s the best beauty tip you’ve ever received? Wear sunscreen every single day. You won’t regret it!

—By Jaclyn Smock, beauty intern

Staffer Beauty Snoop: Senior Editor Bethany Gumper

Written on November 10, 2011 at 9:34 am , by

In this week’s Staffer Beauty Snoop, Senior Editor Bethany Gumper shares her keep-it-simple beauty routine and tricks that keep her looking flawless:

Describe your beauty style in three words or less: Ummm…lazy! 
What are the three beauty products you can’t live without? Clean & Clear Makeup Dissolving Facial Cleanser Wipes, Goody Spin Pin and Almay One-Coat Dial-Up Mascara. Ever since I got Lasik earlier this year, I’m more into eye makeup.
What’s your beauty routine in the morning? After applying moisturizer, I slap on the only five products in my makeup bag in this order: concealer, eyeshadow primer, blush, eyeshadow and mascara. The end. My hair is pretty much just dry shampoo and go. If down isn’t happening, a high bun is cute and easy. 
At night? Shower + air-dry my hair + brush teeth + floss + hair in a ponytail + zzzzzz!
Post-workout? I always take off my makeup before I work out (which explains my love for those Clean & Clear Wipes). So it’s really just about hopping in the shower. If I work out during lunch, I spray my hair with Charlotte Ronson A Perfect Mess Beach Hair after showering.
What beauty product or treatment instantly makes you feel good? A massage. I don’t get them often, but when I do, I’m in heaven.
What’s the best beauty tip you’ve ever received (or thought of yourself)? My friend Carolina, who has gorgeous skin, has been using spray-on sunscreen since before it was cool. So she got me hooked. It’s especially important before I head out for a run—no more tank top tan lines! My go-to is Neutrogena Fresh Cooling Sunblock Body Mist SPF 45.

—By Jaclyn Smock, beauty intern

Staffer Beauty Snoop: Nutrition Editor Juno DeMelo

Written on October 27, 2011 at 10:05 am , by

We’re thrilled to welcome a new addition to the FITNESS staff: Nutrition Editor Juno DeMelo. We got to know her a little better by asking her to spill her no-fail beauty favorites and secrets:

Describe your beauty style in three words or less: Tried-and-true!
What are the three beauty products you can’t live without? Bobbi Brown Concealer, Philosophy Tinted Moisturizer, and dry shampoo.
What’s your beauty routine in the morning? I wash my face, slap on some moisturizer (literally, I slap my cheeks; I could swear I read somewhere that it helps your skin absorb product!), cover up any spots with concealer, line my upper lash line, put on a coat of mascara and dab cream blush onto my cheeks. Oh, and I run the flat iron through my hair every single morning. I spritz it with heat-protectant spray first, and so far, no split ends!
At night? I use Liz Earle Cleanse & Polish Hot Cloth Cleanser, (Editor’s note: A mutual favorite—we love its thick, balm-like cream texture and refreshing eucalyptus-ish smell) wait an hour, then put on Retin-A. It’s the one pricey skin cream I splurge on.
Post-workout? I hate schlepping my makeup bag to the gym, so I usually just head home afterward and take a hot shower.
What beauty product or treatment instantly makes you feel good? A pedicure. Even though my mom was a manicurist when I was a kid—and I have two shelves worth of polish at home!—I can never get it to look as good as it does when the pros do it.
What’s the best beauty tip you’ve ever received (or thought of yourself)? Don’t dye your hair. Until I go gray, I’d rather spend my money on healthy-hair products than highlights. Brown is beautiful!

—By Jaclyn Smock, beauty intern