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Behind-the-Scenes: 2012 FITNESS Beauty Awards

Written on May 16, 2012 at 9:33 am , by

Here’s a peek at just a fraction of the 3,600 new products our beauty team called in for testing for the 2012 FITNESS Beauty Awards, the 60 winners of which will be published in the October issue. Our panel of twelve experts in the fields of dermatology, hair styling and coloring, and makeup artistry are currently testing the products, judging them on factors like effectiveness, ease of use, packaging, and cosmetic elegance. Next, we’ll distribute the products to hundreds of readers for the final round of testing before they’re narrowed down to the top choice in each category. Keep your eye out for the winners in our October issue on newsstands this fall!

Cynthia Nixon Talks Rosacea and Her Secrets to Great Skin

Written on April 30, 2012 at 11:41 am , by

She spiced up the small screen as Miranda Hobbes on the cult TV series Sex and the City, and now actress Cynthia Nixon is speaking out about her experience with the chronic inflammatory skin condition rosacea. Read on as she dishes about the foods she loves, her biggest beauty indulgence and her secrets to embracing that natural flush.

FITNESS: What made you start working with the National Rosacea Society?
Cynthia Nixon: I first started working with the National Rosacea Society because 16 million people have the condition, but not many know about it, so I wanted to raise awareness. When you have it, it can be awful to treat it yourself. The first thing you have to do is speak to a dermatologist and get a treatment plan. You can’t cure rosacea, but you can control it. I had acne in my teens and early 20s, and then developed rosacea in my 30s. So many people think of it as acne, then use scrubs and masks and don’t realize they are only making the problem worse. You need to know what to do and what to avoid. Rosacea is a condition that can cause embarrassment and discomfort.
FITNESS: What’s been your experience with rosacea, and how have you managed it?
CN: I cannot stress enough the importance of seeing a dermatologist because everybody’s skin is different. After I found out what the dermatologist recommended and he prescribed me medicine, I have managed to keep it under control.  I also got information about things that I was eating that were triggering the rosacea.
FITNESS: What specific foods trigger rosacea?
CN: Spicy foods trigger it, like tabasco and jalapeño peppers. I still eat those things, but I stay away from them when I know I have important events coming up. Other things that can trigger it are red wine and too much sun exposure.
FITNESS: What have you learned from working with the National Rosacea Society?
CN: I’ve learned that rosacea is much more common than we think. Also, if you don’t treat it, it can get worse. There are four different kinds of rosacea: redness, pimples, eye irritation and thickening of the skin. Your face gets red and blotchy and it’s not fun. You have to tend to it so it doesn’t get worse.
FITNESS: Moving on to beauty: What’s one product that never leaves your bag?
CN: Undereye cream for sure. I find myself applying some too many times per day!
FITNESS: What are your haircare, makeup and skincare routines like on a typical day?
CN: My hair tends to be oily so I wash it two to three times a week. I wake up in the morning and wash my face, then apply some toner, moisturizer with SPF, and undereye cream.
FITNESS: What are your secrets for looking great anytime, anywhere?
CN: I make sure to maintain a gentle regimen. I don’t use many products because they can be too harsh on my skin and can cause my rosacea to flare up. Also, I wear SPF all the time.
FITNESS: What’s your diet like? Are there certain foods or snacks that are your go-tos?
CN: I’m a big fan of cheese! (Editor’s note: Woman after our own heart!) I also eat a lot of salads. I keep celery, carrots and almonds in my house. I also keep protein bars around because those things can really help sustain you through the day.
FITNESS: What’s your biggest beauty indulgence? 
CN: Facial acupuncture for sure. It keeps my blood flowing.  With rosacea, my skin can get very inflamed so the circulation boost is helpful.
FITNESS: How do you stay in shape when you’re on the go?
CN: I work out mostly when I’m at home. When I’m away for a couple of days, I’ll use the hotel gym. I try to eat well; I’m a vegetarian. Also, as I mentioned, I make sure protein bars are always around.
FITNESS: What’s the best tip you’ve picked up from the makeup, hair and skincare experts you’ve worked with?
CN: I actually received the best tip while filming Sex and the City and that is “put as little foundation on as possible.” Maintain a good skincare routine. A ton of foundation only ages you!

Visit rosaceafacts.com to view Cynthia’s iPSA and take a self-screening quiz.

—By Wanda Rosa, beauty intern

Team NARS Completes Triathlon, Raising More Than $100K for Charity

Written on April 24, 2012 at 3:06 pm , by

Twelve NARS executives, including CEO Louis Desazars, competed in the triathlon— many sporting a bold lip in homage to the brand's superglam aesthetic.

A huge, heartfelt congratulations to our friends at NARS Cosmetics for recently completing the Lavaman Triathlon in Kona, Hawaii, raising more than $111,000 for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society in support of a fellow employee who is a cancer survivor. “We challenged ourselves mentally and physically like never before,” says Kelly Fobar, global communications manager for NARS in New York City. “It was incredible to see how much encouragement, friendship and dedication this team shared in the three short months we trained together.” We at FITNESS are so proud of your accomplishments living proof that makeup, fitness and making a difference aren’t mutually exclusive.

Each member of Team NARS completed a 1.5k swim, 40k bike, and 10k run in the triathlon after months of dedicated training and holding fundraising events in New York City.

How To Sport Sorbet Makeup For Spring

Written on April 23, 2012 at 3:16 pm , by

The sorbet shades taking makeup counters by storm this spring might look intimidating— green lip gloss, blue on cheeks?— but they’re surprisingly sheer and wearable (hint: one at a time, not at all once!). Here, our top picks for the season and the best way to sport them.

EYES Yves Saint Laurent 5 Color Harmony for Eyes in 13 holds a mix of pink, blue, green, purple and yellow shadow hues to brighten your eyes. Wear them individually as sheer washes of color or dip an eyeliner brush in water and trace close to your lashline for a subtle pop of color. Keep the rest of your makeup light in the pinky-neutral family to make your eyes stand out.

CHEEKS Reminiscent of a Jackson Pollock painting, Givenchy Limited Edition Unique Compact Powder in Spring Glow mixes classic pink with skin tone-evening dashes of purple to counteract sallowness and green to neutralize redness. It’s best for fair to medium skin tones and a great choice for those who already have some rosiness in their cheeks but want a touch of definition and glow.

LIPS Creamy lilac Aveda Rehydrating Lip Glaze in Beach Thistle (below, left) and shimmery mint Lancôme Paris Color Fever Gloss in Green Petal (below, right) can be worn alone as a fresh take on nude (pair with deeper gray or brown eye makeup and pink cheeks so you don’t look washed out) or on top of your favorite lipstick to soften and add shine to the hue.

 

 

 

 

COMPLEXION Sweep purple, blue and champagne-hued Clé de Peau Beauté Luminizing Face Enhancer in 11 along your cheekbones to create a soft-focus, candlelit luminosity.

—By Wanda Rosa, beauty intern

Look Like the Ladies Of Mad Men

Written on March 27, 2012 at 9:58 am , by

Steal the retro glam makeup look of the ladies of Mad Men with these two limited-edition collaborations. We think Betty, Joan and Peggy would approve.

Estée Lauder Mad Men Color Collection

Both encased in gilded, vanity-worthy packaging— even the boxes are a vintage-y brocade print— the Lipstick in Cherry and Creme Rouge in Evening Rose lend that timeless just-bitten flush to lips and cheeks.

Refinery29 + Julie Hewett Mad Men Spring Essentials Makeup Kit

This set includes all you need to recreate any of the leading ladies’ old Hollywood makeup looks: The perfect red lipstick, Rouge Noir; Cheekie Pot Cheek & Lip Shine in Destiny, a rosy mauve; flat-topped Cheekie Brush; an Eyeshadow Quad that contains three neutrals (Bellini, Pearl and Siren) and one dark defining powder (Noir); and a portable Mini Liner Brush.

Behind the Scenes of our April “Ready, Set, Glow!” Feature Shoot

Written on March 26, 2012 at 1:37 pm , by

Our “Ready, Set, Glow!” makeup feature in the April issue (check it out on pages 40 – 44!)  shows you seven ways to update your standard makeup look for spring— in a single step. Here’s a peek on the set of the photo shoot for the story, where celebrity makeup artist Jackie Gomez— whose clients include Beyoncé, Zoe Saldana and Marisa Miller— worked her magic:

 

Miss USA Alyssa Campanella Talks Makeup Tricks, Her Favorite Workout & The Dish She Can’t Resist

Written on March 8, 2012 at 5:07 pm , by

Earlier this week, I was lucky enough to chat with down-to-earth, stunning Miss USA Alyssa Campanella, who spilled her secrets for looking great 24-7, her workout routine while on the road— even shared one of her specialty dishes! Read on to steal her tricks.

FITNESS: As Miss USA, you’re expected to always look gorgeous. What are your haircare, makeup and skincare routines like on a typical day?
Alyssa Campanella: Since I’m constantly in the spotlight, I have to always look polished. I wash my hair the night before so that it is nice and fresh for styling, but my makeup varies. I like to have a clean face, but if I have an appearance or event, I play around with colors or makeup styles. My skincare doesn’t really change. I use a pore-refining scrub, toner and a moisturizer daily. I also use a mask every two days to exfoliate. My legs tend to be on the dry side due to the changing weather in New York and being a California girl, so I slather on Australian Gold Moisture Lock, which smells great and keeps my legs hydrated while imparting a natural glow.

FITNESS: What’s the one beauty product that never leaves your bag? 
AC: Chapstick, since my lips dry quickly. I also carry mascara for touch-ups.

FITNESS: What are your secrets for looking great no matter where you are and what you’re doing? Or does it change depending on where you are?
AC: I like to be natural. I want people to appreciate their inner natural beauty, so I try to be as natural as possible. But when the event calls for glamour, I get dolled up.

FITNESS: How do you stay in shape when you’re on the go? What are your favorite workouts?
AC: I actually do a lot of core workouts without even realizing it. Even to pick myself up I do so with my core, and I attribute that to Pilates training. I’m not really a cardio fan; I’m more into muscle building. I do quick exercises when on the go. The trainer actually taught me this exercise called the frog, and it hurts but it definitely tones your legs. You basically squat like a frog and stand up, moving up and down. I thought it was easy, but by the sixth one I started crying “oh no, not 30!”

FITNESS: What are your gym bag beauty essentials? 
AC: To work out, I carry a ponytail holder, put my hair in a bun and slick it back. Afterward, I cleanse with a face wipe, then apply powder, eyeliner, mascara, lipgloss and whatever I have to wear for the day.

FITNESS: We hear that you love to cook and bake. What is your specialty dish? 
AC: One of my best dishes I actually made on New Year’s day for breakfast, which was banana bread. I wanted to stay awake until the New Year, so to stay awake I decided to bake. My father had bananas that were ripe so I woke them up by making banana bread french toast. It was such a hit! I made it for everyone and had a lime-infused berry apple salad on the side.  I credit my mom for the inspiration— she’s a great cook!

FITNESS: What’s your diet like? Are there certain foods or snacks that are your go-tos? 
AC: I actually don’t have a diet; if it’s present in front of me I eat it! I used to eat too much sugar, so I started adding fruits and veggies to my meal. I try to limit sugar and sweets, not to lose weight but to maintain it. Your body is a safe haven and you have to protect it. Bananas, I can eat them all day every day. I also drink this acai strawberry banana smoothie that’s full of antioxidants, which helps keep me full. It’s delicious on the go. The nutritionist also provides these fiber bar chocolate brownies that hold you over in between meals. My schedule is a bit crazy so I have to make sure there are snacks at the ready.

FITNESS: Red hair is famously the most difficult to care for. How do you keep yours looking so stunning? 
AC: I wash my hair with carrot-infused shampoo. My hair is fine and I’m naturally a blonde. I dye it every four to five weeks to keep up with the roots. I also use deep treatments. Before my title, my hair was always left natural, but as Miss USA it has to be kept nice and polished.

FITNESS: In terms of beauty indulgences, is there anything you splurge on? 
AC:  I enjoy a nice foot massage. I’m constantly running around and it works out your legs, but a nice foot massage always feels great! I actually don’t like when people touch my feet, but that’s the one time I will let them. I also like to have my nails done.

FITNESS: What’s the best tip you’ve picked up from the makeup, hair, and skincare experts you’ve worked with? 
AC: Since my hair is naturally thin and fine, it can be lifeless. At a photo shoot in California, the hairstylist taught me to add a little bit of mousse or foam when you’re trying to tease your hair— it gives it body and volume. We call it Texas pageant hair. It gives your hair life! A makeup tip: Line your eyes with a liquid liner first, but finish with a layer of black powder to keep it in place and polish the look.  Also, when using concealer, go for something that matches your skin or is one shade lighter. It really makes a difference when taking photos.

—By Wanda Rosa, beauty intern

How Actress Thandie Newton Gets Glowing Skin, Stays Fit & Says No To Snacks

Written on February 23, 2012 at 11:28 am , by

It’s no wonder that actress and Good Deeds star Thandie Newton is the new face of the Olay Total Effects skincare line: When we sat down with her yesterday morning, the first thing that struck us was the incandescence of her flawless skin— even at 9AM! We asked the sweet, down-to-earth star to share the secrets to that enviable glow, as well as her must-have foods and workouts for on-the-go.

FITNESS: What’s the one beauty product that never leaves your bag?
Thandie Newton: When I was a little girl, my mother, who’s from Zimbabwe but has lived in England for a long time, had to deal with the change from the warm climate to the very cold coast of England, so would never wear makeup. We were working-class and didn’t have money for frivolous stuff, so the only thing she used to used was Oil of Olay, as it was called then. I just remember the little pink bottle up on the shelf of the bathroom. You watch your mom as you grow older, and that really became the symbol of the most glamorous woman. So I’ve used Olay for a long time and I was still using the original one when they got in touch with me. I think I mentioned it in an article or something, and then when they approached me I was incredibly personally touched by it because it was really authentic. I don’t carry it in my bag all the time partly because it’s such an affordable product, so no matter where I travel, I can just go to a pharmacy and it’s there. I do always carry a great lip balm, though: My favorite is from Neal’s Yard Remedies— it’s practically edible!

FITNESS: You’re so busy traveling for work. Is there a routine you try to keep in terms of your makeup, skincare and your hair? Or does it change depending on where you are?
Thandie: I try not to wear makeup if I don’t need to. Just undereye concealer, a little bit of rouge and lip balm. I’ll use those moisturizers with a little color in them, like Olay Total Effects Tone-Correcting UV Moisturizer SPF 15, then I’ll add a few drops of turmeric powder, which is naturally anti-inflammatory and gives a slight sun-kissed look. I have really curly hair so I need a good moisturizer for it. I like John Masters Organics, because it has no harmful chemicals.

FITNESS: You’re always getting your picture taken and jetting from place to place. What are your secrets for looking great on the go?
Thandie: I always make sure I have at least a tinted moisturizer on. There are really great pot rouges by Julie Hewett that come in amazing colors, which I can literally dab on with my eyes closed. Or I’ll pinch my cheeks: l love those old-fashioned little tricks. Apart from that, I just try to remember to smile!

FITNESS: How do to stay active and in shape no matter where you are?
Thandie: Jivamukti Yoga is my absolute go-to temple of wellness. Not only is it a wonderful, energetic, active workout, but it’s also incredibly soothing and relaxing.  I’ve tried a lot of different yoga practices and that one was a bit of a life-changer for me.

FITNESS: What types of foods and snacks do you gravitate toward to stay healthy?
Thandie: I just try to eat well. Anything that makes you feel bad is actually aging for your body. I also love juicing. Because I have a very busy schedule, I’ll have a juice with ginger and lemon in the morning and a green juice in the afternoon. Within 20 minutes you feel the difference; it has a direct impact on your system. I’m not a snacker— I just don’t graze. I think three meals a day is plenty, and then I have the juices in between.

FITNESS: In terms of beauty indulgences, is there anything you splurge on?
Thandie: I think a good massage is really beneficial. I really like a hot stone massage, but as with anything it has to be in combination with other things, like if I’ve done a yoga class and I want to feel soothed afterward. I feel like every little thing that I do, whether it’s taking care of my skin or eating well, is a gift to myself.

FITNESS: What’s the best tip you’ve picked up from a makeup artist, skincare expert or a hairstylist? 
Thandie: I was complaining about my hair being really dry and the ends were ratty because I’ve been relaxing it since I was a teenager, when a friend suggested I grow the relaxer out. It occurred to me that these are incredibly harmful chemicals, so I grew my hair out, and I’m so thrilled that I have. It’s healthier and more lustrous than it’s ever been.

5 Unexpected Uses For Makeup You Already Own

Written on February 21, 2012 at 10:00 am , by

Time to streamline! These genius double uses for the makeup staples you already own make your cosmetics go the extra mile, saving much-needed space in your gym bag—and money in your wallet.

  • BLUSH = EYE SHADOW  Use an eye shadow brush to sweep blush over your eyelids for a pretty, monochromatic look.
  • CONCEALER = EYE & LIP PRIMER Neutralize the ruddy pink tones of eyelids and lips with a light layer of your regular concealer: The colors you apply on top with appear truer and last longer.
  • EYE SHADOW = HIGHLIGHTER Blend a light-colored neutral cream eye shadow (think champagne or gold), such as CoverGirl Intense ShadowBlast in Beige Blaze, on the tops of cheekbones, cupid’s bow, inner corners of the eyes and under the brows for a believable glow.
  • LIP BALM OR LIPSTICK  = CHEEK & EYE ENHANCER In a pinch, dab tinted lip balm or lipstick on cheeks and eyes—they can double as a cream blush and eye shadow. Use a clear balm to add a touch of healthy sheen.

Source: Pat McGrath, creative design director for Procter & Gamble Beauty

And my own creation: Layer lip balm, a rose, pinky-nude or mauve-hued eye shadow, and top with clear lip gloss for a custom-created lip color.

—By Wanda Rosa, beauty intern

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