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The Best Sunscreen News We’ve Heard All Year

Written on July 31, 2014 at 11:35 am , by

The United States might finally be catching up with the rest of the world in skincare and sun protection.

The House passed a bill Monday that would expedite the Food and Drug Administration’s approval process for new sunscreen ingredients—many of which are old news to Europe, Asia and Australia.

The FDA hasn’t approved a new ingredient in 15 years (seriously!), and some applications have been pending approval for more than 10. The reason? Many claim it’s a simple overflow of approval work and a lack of information. Because sunscreen is viewed as a cosmetic product in the EU, there isn’t much hard data available on whether or not these ingredients are completely safe, thus stalling the process.

Now the bill is headed to the Senate, and if it passes, The Sunscreen Innovation Act would slap 18-month deadlines on the FDA for approving new applications, but would only apply to ingredients that have been sold outside of the U.S. for at least five years. Many of those ingredients make sunscreen easier to apply and prolong its effect, meaning more protection for us without the goopy, sticky mess.

Fingers crossed for better ingredients and healthier skin!


Photo by Laura Doss

More from FITNESS:

Don’t Get Burned: 5 Sunscreen Mistakes You’re Making

Quiz: Check Yourself: What’s Your Skin Cancer Risk?

10 Skin Cancer Mistakes Even Smart Women Make

Win an Exclusive Half-Marathon Necklace!

Written on April 10, 2013 at 2:17 pm , by

Erica Sara Designs Necklace

A feminine way to celebrate your half-marathon accomplishment, this exclusive necklace is by Erica Sara Designs.

Bling it on!

In celebration of our 10th annual More/FITNESS Women’s Half-Marathon this Sunday, three lucky readers will each score an exclusive, sterling silver necklace from Erica Sara Designs!

You can enter to win between now through next Tuesday. Don’t want to wait to see if you won? Pop on over to the ESD site and use the code FITNESSHALF to purchase this fabulous necklace for 20 percent off.

Enter to win here and good luck!

 Official rules

SpaFinder Wellness Week is Here!

Written on March 13, 2013 at 11:05 am , by

SpaFinder Yoga Girl

Image courtesy of SpaFinder

Who doesn’t love a good deal on fitness classes and spa treatments, right? Which is why we’re pretty psyched it’s Wellness Week over at SpaFinder Wellness *right now.* What this means: Well, what’s most enticing is that if you buy a $25 gift card, you get an extra one to use this week. (Sounds like a good girls’ date to us!)

But it also means that throughout the week, leading wellness experts, chefs, and celeb trainers from the nation’s top gyms, spas, and wellness providers have been sharing their tips, tricks, recipes, and tools. If you check out the SpaFinder Wellness site, you can find some of the free events, open houses, workshops, consultations, and more.

FITNESS is headed to a special event in NYC tonight to check out product demos from some of the nation’s top beauty, skin-care, and wellness companies. Click on over to @FITNESSColleen’s Twitter feed later tonight or tomorrow to see how it went! 

Crowning Achievements for Married Women

Written on January 22, 2013 at 4:42 pm , by

Raquel Riley Thomas Family

Raquel with her family. “I will do yoga and Zumba if I had a challenging day. My children join me, so I get a great workout and bonding time with my girls. It’s a win for all of us!” Photo by Roy Cox Photography.

Glamorous gowns, toned bodies, and serious accomplishments. No, we’re not talking about Hollywood’s awards season—we’re talking about pageant season, people! Why you should care: Based on the 2,000+ entries we received for our 2012 Face of Fitness Contest that required essays about your accomplishments, some of you married ladies very well could be contenders for a crown someday.

Curious about the Mrs. America pageant, we chatted it up with Raquel Riley Thomas, a stunning military officer turned pageant queen. Not only is she the Executive Producer/Director for the Mrs. DC America pageant, a preliminary qualifier for Mrs. America, but she is also Mrs. Maryland America 2010-11 and Mrs. American (1st RU) 2010-11. Her accolades would take up this entire post, so we’ll have to skip right to her insights about competing.

On the difference between Miss America and Mrs. America:

The Mrs. DC team likes to say, “Marriage has never looked so good,” but just like the unmarried-girls version, this is not a beauty pageant. It’s a whole package deal. The difference is that instead of a med student standing to your left, she’s a doctor now. And on your right is an attorney. Mrs. America is like the Superbowl of married women.

On competing at the state level:

I can’t speak for the other states, but the reputation of the women in Mrs. DC are that they are the crème de la crème. Not only are they very fit, but they are accomplished in their fields and honorable about their causes. We even have a diplomat in this year’s competition!

On her experience of going from military boots to bikinis:

I love the glitz and glamour, but the service to the community is still there. I just get to do it in heels and beautiful outfits now! Running the Mrs. DC pageant gives me the chance to put a spotlight on some amazing women and say, ‘Thank you for all the hard work you do for the community.”

On her fitness advice for potential competitors:

You have to be really disciplined. Once you have the fitness down, everything else falls into place.

So get to it, readers! We want to throw some roses at you.

Give the Gift of Bliss (Plus a Reader Discount!)

Written on November 26, 2012 at 9:00 am , by

Last-minute gift problems can be solved in just a few clicks. (Photo courtesy of Spa Week)

Thanksgiving is like the starting line to the holiday marathon. Now that it’s over, you’re already being inundated with ads, flash sales and more holiday shopping stress than necessary before December. Here at FITNESS, we believe in a healthy body and mind–which is hard to achieve in mobs of shoppers and rude cashiers. So let’s make life a little easier, shall we? Whether you need a gift for a party hostess (she has enough wine, trust us), a co-worker or the ladies in your morning jogging group try a different route this year with a Spa & Wellness Gift card from Spa Week. Valid year-round at over 7,500 spa and wellness facilities in the U.S., you can help a friend treat themselves to a massage, facial or whatever else they need to decompress.

As if the idea with crossing off half of your shopping list isn’t enticing enough, Spa Week is giving FITNESS readers an exclusive discount! Just go to spaweek.com/fitness for 15 percent off on all gift card denominations ($25, $50 or $100). Offer ends December 31, 2012, giving you just enough time for those last-minute items. Happy shopping!

More from FITNESS: The FITNESS Gift Guide

Long and Lovely: An Update on Getting Hair Extensions

Written on September 5, 2012 at 9:52 am , by

It’s been a little over a week since I got my Great Lengths extensions. My favorite part of this entire experience has been looping my hair into the perfect pony tail before my morning run. Having longer locks helps me feel girlie and sexy when I’m playing tennis or running. It’s also been a fun week of playing dress up. The first couple of days I sported my natural curly texture, that made me feel very 80′s hair-bandish so I wore tight skinny jeans and heavy-metal tees (prompting my hubby to say I looked like Tommy Lee–ahh what every girl wants to hear.) Then I decided that bangs could be a fun addition to the mix. With the bangs I have felt more girly, opting for skirts and ethnic-style linen tops in a muted palette. It is taking me longer to get ready and there were 2-3 days of adjustment, but overall I highly recommend the experience. I’m having fun changing up my look, hair first.

Me with my long hair!

Tell us: Would you get hair extensions?

The Long and the Short of It

Written on August 23, 2012 at 3:39 pm , by


My before shot! Using Cher circa 1970 and Kim K as inspiration!

You would think that as the fashion director of Fitness that I would be obsessed with clothes, shoes, jewelry, bags—you know all the trappings of fashion. Of course I love all those things but the truth is that my true obsession is hair. I truly believe that even if your outfit is not the latest and greatest, even if you’re kicking around in your favorite Puma sneakers and Lululemon capris, if your haircut is on trend and your hair looks healthy nothing else matters.

For me style starts with the right hair. That doesn’t mean always having perfect hair. I love that the high bun is making a comeback and there’s nothing sexier than post-work-out wisps of hair framing a glowing face.  I think hair tells the story of everyone’s personal style. For years I’ve been dying for long flowy locks a la Kim K and Cher circa 1970. Their Armenian roots give their look an ethnic bend that I can easily identify with. But it’s the sex appeal and versatility of their great hair that I have always coveted.

So today at 5pm my favorite hairdresser—the very talented Alma G—is going to give me hair extensions compliments of Great Lengths. I’ll be posting pictures of my hair and all the crazy styles I look forward to sporting thanks to my long and luscious locks.


Summer Style: 4th of July!

Written on July 2, 2012 at 2:35 pm , by

Written by Andrea Alvarez, fashion intern

Summer’s officially in full gear, and we are super excited for salt water in our hair, sun-kissed skin and most importantly, summer fashions. With the 4th of July on our heels, we have two perfect patriotic looks to satisfy the mood you’re in, whether you’re headed to a barbecue or hanging poolside with your friends.

Feeling flirty? Slip on a sweetheart denim dress and throw on a cute pair of wedges. We love this dress from TopShop!

If feisty is more your style, nothing beats a pair of combat boots or Converse kicks and high-waisted shorts. Spice it up with a crop tank like this one, and you’ll be party ready in no time.

Now you tell us: What are you wearing this 4th of July?

Country Music Star Kellie Pickler’s Beauty and Fitness Secrets

Written on June 26, 2012 at 12:23 pm , by

Pickler sounds just as pitch perfect in person as on her new album. (Photo by Russ Harrington)

Kellie Pickler broke onto the music scene at age 19 when she made it to the top six on season five of American Idol. The bubbly country star has only garnered more fans since the show, releasing three albums (including “100 Proof” earlier this year), winning PETA’s “World Sexiest Vegetarian” title and marrying songwriter Kyle Jacobs. All of this joy comes from a past filled with struggle—she was raised by her grandparents after her mom left when she was two and her dad was in and out of jail.

Most recently, the low-key Pickler (“If I’m not working, I’m in a ponytail, baseball cap and boots,” she says) signed on to be the face of Tone Skincare’s new Fruit Peel Body Wash. In honor of the partnership, we sat down with her to learn more about her beauty routine, fitness habits and musical inspirations.

“100 Proof” seems to be your best-reviewed album so far. What do you attribute that to?
I made it as country as I was allowed to! Traditional country is my favorite style. Everyone’s definition of country is different, but there’s room for it all. I co-wrote six songs on this album, including one with my husband called “Mother’s Day.” The album is really a reflection of my soul.

In “Mother’s Day” you sing about someday possibly having a loving relationship with a daughter of your own. Have you and Kyle given any thoughts to expanding your family?
That’s something that is important to talk about before you get married! You have to make sure you both want the same things. We’re not actively trying, but if it happens, it happens.

As a vegetarian, what are some of your favorite foods?
I love vegetables. Asparagus is my favorite and I really enjoy grilled onions, peppers, zucchini and squash. I love fruit too and drink a lot of water to get all of the junk out! It’s really true about “you are what you eat.” What you eat really is reflected on the outside. Still, I splurge and have a cake and ice cream, just not everyday.

Keep reading to find out how Pickler stays fit without the gym and which reality shows she tunes in for!

Read more

Hot Topic Tuesday: The “Tanning Mom” Controversy

Written on May 8, 2012 at 3:28 pm , by

It takes more than a cute sun hat to protect your skin! (Photo courtesy of Shutterstock)

From Good Morning America to Saturday Night Live’s Weekend Update, New Jersey mom Patricia Krentcil has been making waves this week for one hot topic that is literally sizzling. If you don’t know her by name, you likely would know her if you saw her face—she has tan skin that goes beyond any tan you might see on the beach. How/why? Krentcil has an unlimited membership at her tanning salon and goes for the maximum 12 minutes per session, 20 times per month. Yikes! (And yes, she continues, even during National Skin Cancer and Melanoma Awareness Month.)

But what really has Krentcil in hot water is the accusation some have made about what made her daughter so tan. School officials asked the girl where her rash came from, and she said she had gone tanning with her mother. Now, Krentcil faces charges of second-degree child endangerment—not to mention growing vitriol from bloggers and other critics across the country. Even the notoriously sunned Snooki has even called Krentcil “crazy” for allegedly taking her daughter to a tanning salon.

It’s an ongoing legal battle, so it will be a bit before we know the truth in this story. We feel for the daughter if her mom did make her use a tanning bed or booth, but there is one good thing that comes from this story: Every time we see Krentcil on the news, we’re inspired to reapply sunscreen!

Now tell us: Do you think that Krentcil is being “bullied” as some have proposed (and should be considered innocent until proven guilty in court) or do you think it’s important to shine a spotlight on her to remind others that this isn’t acceptable?

Photo courtesy of Shutterstock