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.
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
Next week, I’m traveling to Texas for the first time, and while preparing for my trip, I’ve been testing out hair products to use while I’m there. I love the look of voluminous hair, but I have naturally fine, straight strands that look flat and limp without any styling magic. The problem is, I hate spending more than a few minutes on my hair so I’m usually looking for a product that’ll do all the work for me. I found it with Göt2b’s 2sexy Voluptuous Volume Spray Mousse ($6, ulta.com). The unique spray formula makes it easy to target your roots. Here’s how I use it: I part my hair in several places along the top and crown of my head and spray it along my scalp. Then I mist it through the length of my hair for extra body. I flip my hair upside down to blow-dry, using my fingers to massage the product into my roots and a boar bristle brush to avoid tangles. When I’m done, you’d swear my hair was defying gravity. You get maximum lift that doesn’t feel dirty, as well as, workable hold and shine. I haven’t had to use my teasing comb in weeks. You know how they say, “Everything’s bigger in Texas?” Well, I’ll fit right in the Lone Star State thanks to this miracle mousse!
Tracy Anderson’s clients will soon have the opportunity to get a hot new hairstyle to match their hot new body. Friend and business partner Gwyneth Paltrow is teaming up with Anderson, as well as, celebrity hairstylist David Babaii (Paltrow’s go-to stylist) to open David Babaii Blow Dry Bar in Anderson’s Brentwood, California studio.
The cool thing about this collaboration is the collision of fitness and beauty (a match made in heaven, we think!). This idea of overall wellness has significant meaning to Babaii who, with the help of Anderson, lost an impressive 100 pounds! “I am so excited and honored to join the team as we all share the same devotion to women’s fitness, health and beauty,” says Babaii regarding the partnership. He understands the importance of regaining your confidence while transforming your body, and, let’s face it, who wouldn’t want to reward themselves with a little post-workout pampering?
The beauty bar is set to open its doors Thursday, April 4th, exclusively for Anderson’s Brentwood studio members. Services will range from a yoga-mat worthy ponytail to a glamorous, red carpet style, plus, all of the stylists will be trained by Babaii himself.
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After spending a few days in the heat during a work trip in Palm Beach followed by a few days in the freezing temps in NYC, my skin was confused to say the least, going from oily to dry. But my facial skin wasn’t the only place that suffered from the quick climate change. During my weekly blowout, I noticed my scalp (yes, it’s skin, too) was freaking out (and by freaking out, I mean flaking—gross, I know), too. So I reached for Clear Scalp & Hair Beauty Therapy Deep Nourishing Treatment Mask ($6, drugstore.com) in hopes of nipping the flakes in the bud. I also called up the brand’s celebrity dermatologist, Francesca Fusco, for tips on fighting and preventing flakes. She said that when applying shampoo and conditioner, to lightly massage the product in with my fingertips—not nails, a mistake some women and stylists make. She also said that instead of skipping conditioner at my roots to increase volume (a trick I always do!), to slather it on my roots directly, assuring me that my scalp was craving moisture and that the conditioners were light enough that they wouldn’t weigh down my blowout. Guess what? A few days after taking the advice, my flakes were gone (such a relief) and my hair was bouncy despite applying the mask from roots to ends.
Maria Menounos Talks Inexpensive Spring Trends, Keeping Her Workouts Fun and Her Best Kept Hair Secret
Extra co-host Maria Menounos is tearing up New York City promoting her new film, Adventures of Serial Buddies, a comedy out this week and her latest fashion project with Marshalls. In between her Better TV and Today Show segments, Menounos and I caught up on fashion, fitness and, of course, beauty.
What are you working on with Marshalls?
“I’ve been shopping at Marshalls for years thanks to my mom. I love that you can go there and get on-trend pieces for prices that won’t break the bank. Marshalls has these amazing buyers who make deals with companies so you get what’s in department stores, like bags from Italy, for less. You can buy three dresses instead of one, and saving money is really important. My savings has helped me own a property and make a movie! Plus each store offers something a little different.”
What are some of your favorite spring finds from Marshalls?
“This mustard dress that I’m wearing is one of them. They have tons of great wedges—black and nude, white bags, printed and lace tops and chambray blouses, which I love with white shorts and wedges.”
I know you’ve done DWTS and even WWE wrestling. What’s your favorite workout?
“I do this all day [running from one gig to the next]! Sometimes I play basketball with a bunch of guys. I recently took a Spin class, which I loved but thought was really hard. And once, I took this drum class, where we were doing squats the whole time. I like to make my workouts fun so I don’t feel like it’s work. And speaking of WWE, it was one of the coolest experiences of my life. I got a trainer and learned how to wrestle. They were shocked.”
What’s your go-to healthy snack?
“Rickland Orchards granola bars—they’re really yummy and easy to eat on the go.” (Menounos is a spokeswoman for the company.)
Your hair and makeup look gorgeous. Any tips to share?
“I take off my makeup off every night, even when I’m working late and I’m on my computer answering emails in bed until 1 in the morning. The Neutrogena face wipes are my favorite. And before bed, I use the Alterna Caviar Overnight Hair Rescue to keep my hair soft and looking healthy.”
Girls’ Star Allison Williams Spills on Her Hit Show, Her Skin-care Routine and Her Obsession with SoulCycle
Breaking beauty news: HBO’s Girls’ star Allison Williams was just crowned the new face of Simple Skincare. Let’s just take a moment to talk about her shiny, perfect hair, her gorgeous smile and her fluttery long lashes. I had the pleasure of chatting with her about the insider beauty secrets she picked up in hair and makeup, her favorite workouts and what’s it’s like to work on one of the hottest shows in television. Watch my interview here!
Compiling the ultimate beauty-equipped gym bag can be tricky, especially if you exercise before work or during your lunch break. Here’s a roundup of products that keep my bag light while still meeting all of my beauty needs.
I wash my hair only a few times each week, but sometimes I’m left with no choice (like after Spinning). Bumble and bumble’s Be Color Minded Kit ($28, Sephora) is great for dire-wash situations since the 2-ounce shampoo, conditioner and styling balm are all free of sulfates and harsh chemicals that can dry out hair when used often. And for days when my hair needs a little pick-me-up, dry shampoo is my hero. I keep a mini can of Redken Powder Refresh 01 ($8, redken.com for salons) in my bag at all times. I love that it adds volume with leaving an annoying white residue.
If your gym’s locker room doesn’t provide a blow dryer, look for a lightweight folding one, such as the X5 Superlite Mini Nano Tourmaline & Ionic Dual Voltage Travel Dryer ($49.99, Folica.com). This packs a surprisingly powerful blast despite its small size.
Moisturizing after a shower is an absolute must (especially during the winter months), so I always make sure to keep mini bottles of body lotion on hand. Burt’s Bees Naturally Nourishing Milk & Honey Body Lotion costs only $1.99 (burtsbees.com) for the travel size and leaves skin super soft. It smells fresh, and its lightweight formula won’t leave your skin slick or sticky.
If you don’t want to bring your entire stash of makeup with you, invest in an interchangeable palette, like Bobbi Brown 3-Pan Palette ($10, Bobbibrown.com), which allows you to swap out blush and shadow colors according to your look that day. And, if you have any contact lens cases lying around, here’s a trick: fill one side with your favorite face cream and the other with foundation. This way, you don’t have to miss out on your must-haves in order to downsize.
—Jillian Ruffo, beauty intern
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!
Troy Polamalu is known as the Pittsburgh Steelers’ fast and physical safety. But off the field, Troy’s a soft-spoken family man who makes setting a good example for his younger players and fans one of his top priorities. Recently, he hosted a Polynesian Luau Event to benefit the Harry Panos Fund of the Pittsburgh Foundation, which he set up with his wife, Theodora, in honor of her grandfather, a World War II veteran, and the Troy Polamalu Football Camp held in American Somoa each year. I got the chance to chat with the Polamalus while Troy got his curls touched up by Head & Shoulders Celebrity Stylist, Sunnie Brook Jones (Polamalu’s a spokesperson for the brand).
You are hosting the Luau tonight—tell me about the event and why it is so important to you.
“We’re having this event with two performances: Common Kings, an island reggae-style pop group and another reggae artist named Fiji who’s one of the most popular island reggae artists. I say ‘island’ in the sense of the Polynesian island. And then we’re going to have a performance by Netane, which is a Polynesian dance group out of Orlando, Florida and it’s going to be a real good time. At most events, players come and people pay to get autographs but in a lot of ways this event epitomizes our culture in that we’re hosting an event for everyone to have a really good time. Obviously, people have paid for tickets to get in, which is the great fundraising aspect of it, but as far as hosting it, there’s live music, two concerts, a live performance, all-you-can-eat food, and all-you-can-drink drinks. There’s just so many people who have donated so much and it’s really cool that when you have a passion for a certain cause, how willing people are to really fork out and help out.”
Head & Shoulders is a title sponsor of the event and you’ve been partnered with them for four years. What do you like most about working with the Head & Shoulders brand?
“Well, we have a great relationship. I grew up using Head & Shoulders, so it was really awesome to start the relationship four years ago and to be able to do the different commercials that we’ve done and to pair it with different things. We paired it first with a charity called Operation Once in a Lifetime, which our charity, the Harry Panos Fund for Veterans still has a close relationship with. Then we do things like the million dollar hair insurance policy, the wax figure and now we have the School of Deeper Learning. But it’s been an awesome relationship that we’ve had together. Our locker room is full of Head & Shoulders products!”
As a football player used to being on the field, is it difficult getting used to the beauty aspect of these things, like the hair and makeup?
“Like everything at first, it took some getting used to. For example: the acting—on our very first commercial they gave me five lines, very simple. I was like, ‘Oh yea, no problem, I got this.’ Then I get there, sit with another professional actor and there are 50 people behind the camera and I went blank. I was like, ‘Oh man!’ So I’m getting used to the acting; to the hair and makeup. The first time I ever did anything, they tried to put makeup on me and I was really offended! But you get used to these things.”
You were recently voted the most liked athlete in the NFL by fans, so what do you think makes you so appealing to your fans?
“My first reaction was, ‘I don’t even like myself!’ But I think when you get those types of comments, whether it’s on a personal basis or through media, I try to tell younger players and others that you never just represent yourself. You represent your wife, your children, your family, your culture, the people you were raised by, your faith, and you have to always be conscious of that rather than living egocentrically and doing what you want to do. So in a sense, I think all of it goes to the different circumstances and people that have helped me throughout my entire life.”
So, will you ever cut your hair?
“Um—no. Well, I haven’t cut it in years. Not even a trim; I never even trimmed it. I could probably use one, as I’ve been told several times. I haven’t cut it for 10 years, I think it’s going on 11 years, which is also when I met my wife so I haven’t cut it since I met her!”
Speaking of your wife: Theodora, I know you are a busy mom of two. How do you find time to fit in exercise?
“It’s all about balancing and prioritizing things correctly. Making sure the children are happy. My husband and my children always come first before anything else. And as long as their happy and they are getting everything that they need, then everything else just falls into place—they’re always my first priority.”
Do you and Troy ever work out together?
“We used to workout together before the children and he put me on a workout plan with his special gym equipment that he had made for him at our gym. I used to do that. But now, after the kids, I don’t really have time to go to the gym, so I just try to put them in a stroller or a double stroller and jog around the city.”
Besides jogging, are there any specific workouts you like to do when you can fit it in?
“I like Bikram yoga. I try to do that whenever I’m in California. I try to do it three times a week if I can. I do CrossFit; I love it. It’s so much fun. It’s an amazing workout. It works your core really well, which is great for women, especially if you have kids. The core sort of goes away so you really have to train those muscles hard to get back into shape and back into being strong again. After children, everything gets a little bit stretched out. And I love running. I was running like six miles a day as often as I could. If I can’t get the kids in the stroller to jog with them, then I’ll just go run around the park. Sometimes I run without them to help clear my head.”
What are the healthy snacks you like to prepare for your family?
“We do green juice. Green juice is a staple in our house. We juice everyday. The kids help me; they know all about it. I put fruit in their green juice to make it a little sweeter. But the green juice I drink generally doesn’t have any fruit at all so that’s our staple. Juicing is really fun. The kids get involved with it, then they get excited about what they make so they don’t mind drinking it even if it looks funny. We like to say that my kids are super heroes so green juice is ‘hulk juice’ for us. It’s really fun and a great way to get kids interested and active in participating in a healthy and balanced diet.”