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Beauty, Hairstyles, Fashion Trends & More | SheKnows

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    Finding a bra that fits perfectly can be something of a gamble. Getting measured is only part of the process. Different stores seem to go by different sizes, and then there are all the different styles to wriggle in and out of until you find the one that works for you. That’s if you don’t give up and just grab the next-best thing before you completely run out of patience.

    More: 21 types of boobs women may have at some point in their lives

    But new research could make everything a lot easier. Lingerie company ThirdLove has identified the seven most common breast shapes, which appear in the company's own breast shape dictionary to persuade women that it's the shape of their boobs rather than the traditional measurements taken around the chest that should dictate what type of bra they should be shopping for.

    Round boobs

    This is the holy grail of boobs: equally full at the top and the bottom. Typically seen on pre-pregnancy 20-somethings with bouncy bodies. If you have these boobs, show them off, ladies! And when it comes to your ideal bra, go for a plunge style to show off that cleavage and make the most of your shape, like this one from Nordstrom, $41.

    Plunge bra for round boobs
    Image: Nordstrom

    Different-size boobs

    If you have asymmetrical boobs (one bigger than the other), you’re not alone. It’s actually super rare not to have different-size breasts, with an estimated 99 percent of women having asymmetrical boobs to some degree. And around 40 percent of women have one breast that is a whole cup size (or two) bigger than the other. Golden rule: Buy a bra that fits the larger best. It’s far easier — and more comfortable — to add a pad to the smaller boob than to try to squeeze the larger one into a cup that’s too small.

    Side set boobs

    Side set boobs have a space between them that’s three fingers wide. If, on the other hand, they’re very close together or touching, they’re considered to be close set. Make side set boobs feel supported with a bra designed to draw them into a more central position, such as this front-fastener from Macy's, $30.

    Front fastening bra
    Image: Macy's

    More: Finally, cute curvy swimwear has become a trendy reality

    Bell-shaped boobs

    Blame gravity for bell-shaped boobs (slim at the top and full at the bottom), although it’s not the only culprit — you could also blame weight gain or loss and hormonal changes. If you have bell-shaped boobs, your best friend is an underwire bra, which will make your breasts appear rounder.

    Slender boobs

    If you have small, flat boobs, embrace the fact that you can go braless if you wish — you’re the envy of many an ample-bosomed lady. But if you’d like to give what you’ve got a bit of a helping hand, then invest in a good-quality, built-in push-up bra to give an appearance of natural fullness, like this Victoria's Secret push-up bra, $29. A bra with insertable pads can make you look up to two sizes larger.

    Push up bra
    Image: Victoria's Secret

    "East West" boobs

    "East West" boobs have outward-facing nipples, which are very common. To draw your boobs toward the center and create an illusion of cleavage, choose a molded, rigid bra with supportive side panels.

    Teardrop boobs

    Teardrop boobs are less full at the top than at the bottom and may be due to hormonal changes, breastfeeding, genetics or simply the ongoing fight against gravity. The best bra style for this type of boob is a supportive plunge bra with cups at an angle to create lift.

    Need a little help working out what shape your boobs are? Check out our infographic below.

    More: Man tries on his girlfriend's XL clothes, calls bullshit on sizing

    Your breast shape will dictate the best bra type for you
    Image: SheKnows

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    Food and travel are my things. If I’m not cooking, I’m eating. If I’m not eating, I’m traveling somewhere to cook and eat. If you read my blog or follow me on SnapChat (whatsgabycookin) you’ll know that I have very little time (or patience) for beauty treatments. So, when SheKnows asked me to try out an ultra, ultra-luxurious 24K gold facial, I jumped at the chance to check out what it was all about. And let me tell you, it did not disappoint.

    This post was sponsored by Arm & Hammer™ Truly Radiant™ Toothpaste & Spinbrush


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    When Cary Williams first began training to become a professional boxer, she was told that she was "too pretty" to compete in the arena with the big time athletes. Rather than deterring her, the criticism propelled her to work harder and prove her doubters wrong. Cary went on to become an Olympic-style boxer, and is now an Olympic-level boxing coach and the owner of several boxing clubs in California.

    She started Too Pretty to inspire other women and girls to defy gender stereotypes and pursue any dream they have, regardless of who they are or what they look like. The company offers attire and accessories, all of which promotes the message of female empowerment and strength.

    Check out her Kickstarter now and get your daughters and friends involved in the #toopretty mission.

    Name: Cary Williams

    Company: Too Pretty

    Year founded: 2015

    Twitter: @tooprettybrand

    Facebook: Too Pretty

    Instagram:@tooprettybrand


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    It's that time of year again: People are stripping off left, right and center and strutting their stuff poolside. It can be extremely intimidating. The daunting thought of revealing your legs (that haven't seen the sun for nine months) to the world is enough to keep anyone wrapped up in layers on the beach.

    We know that no one is really going to be paying that much attention to our bodies, of course, but we're all different. The one thing that I truly notice about others when I'm on the beach is confidence. Confidence can be the hardest thing to turn on, but it's also one of the easier things to boost.

    If I look after my body just a few weeks before hitting my holiday, the stripping off part isn't so bad. Don't get me wrong: I'm not one for dramatic juice cleanses, but doing little things can make all the difference. I always like to save up a little bit of money to pamper myself in the days beforehand. Getting a manicure/pedicure and a spray tan is all the confidence my body needs, but of course gorgeous swimwear is a must to really feel good on the beach. This summer, I'm relying on Simply Be to pull together my beach body and help me feel gorgeous. Here are three pieces that made me excited to spend time by the pool.

    1. Comfy cover-up pants

    Image: Katie Mathews/SheKnows

    Most beach restaurants and bars like you to cover up when you're eating, so I always like to pack easy-to-wear items that won't look horrendous after sitting at the bottom of my bag all day. These elasticated waist and ankle bottoms are so easy to wear and are really comfortable for a more relaxed beach day.

    2. Detailed one-piece

    Image: Katie Mathews/SheKnows

    When your cover up is that gorgeous, the swimsuit needs to match, and I love how expensive this black halterneck, crochet costume looks (it's only £35). For those days when you're perhaps not feeling as up to showing as much skin as a bikini, a swimsuit is the best choice. The crochet detailing helps the suit sit on trend while the sleek design helps me feel every bit a modern-day-Marilyn.

    3. Sophisticated white maxi

    Image: Katie Mathews/SheKnows

    For those occasions when you want an outfit that's a little more sophisticated but can still sit in the bottom of your bag all day, this white, button-down maxi dress wouldn't make me feel out of place on a yacht in the south of France or strolling down the beach in the Maldives (I just need someone to take me now…).

    What are your beach confidence boosters?

    This post is part of a sponsored collaboration between Simply Be and SheKnows


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    Beyoncé’s “Bootylicious” may have made it famous — and Kim Kardashian put the cherry on top — but nowadays, everyone’s going crazy for some killer curves. We always encourage embracing your naturally beautiful body type, and this is one time when the saying holds true: If you’ve got it, flaunt it. Meaning, if you’ve been hiding a shapely hourglass for all of these years, it’s time to learn how to flatter (and celebrate) your fuller figure.

    The pear body shape is the most common female body shape. Grab a mirror and take a look: If your hips and backside are wider than your shoulders, you're the lucky owner of a pear-shaped body. Pear-shaped bodies typically have a smaller bustline as well. Depending on your overall proportions, bustier pears may actually be an hourglass body style.

    More: Best tops for pear-shaped bodies

    Which celebrities have a pear-shaped body?

    Celebrities with pear shaped bodies
    Image: SheKnows Design

    Beyoncé, Kim Kardashian, Christina Aguilera, Eva Longoria, Paris Hilton and Rihanna all have pear-shaped bodies. Yep, these gals tend to be both hippy and hip!

    Stylists' secrets: Dressing a pear-shaped body

    Style challenges include finding clothing items that fit both your waist (tiny) and your hips (a bit wider). Dresses can be a challenge because slim-cut fashion may not flare enough to accommodate the bottom half of your pear-shaped body, while remaining tailored to the top half of your body.

    More: Best pants for pear body shapes

    Speaking of tailored, find a good tailor and keep him or her on speed dial. Fashions that don't fit quite right can quickly be remedied with a dart here and a tuck there.

    How to dress a pear-shaped body

    1. Focus attention upward. Pear-shaped women should focus attention on the upper half of their pear-shaped body by choosing slim, fitted tops, button-down shirts and cardigans.
    2. Embellish around the neck. Shirts and dresses with embellished necklines naturally draw the eye upward toward the slimmest part of a pear-shaped body.
    3. Layer it up. Layering garments can balance a pear-shaped body by adding visual interest to the top half of the body.
    4. Go for an A. A-line dresses and tops emphasize the upper body while slimming wider hips characteristic of a pear-shaped body.
    5. Wide is good. Keep the hems of pants, skirts and dresses wide to visually balance a pear-shaped body. Pointy-toed shoes with a wide-hemmed pants will elongate your legs.
    6. Get a little structure. Structured pants are a great fit, especially those that skim the hips and thighs of a pear-shaped body. Avoid flashy embellishments like cargo pants, funky pockets or embroidery.

    Next Up: Pear-shaped celeb style

    The best styles for pear-shaped bodies

    best skirts for pear-shaped bodies
    Image: SheKnows Design
    best pants for pear-shaped bodies
    Image: SheKnows Design
    best cocktail dresses for pear shaped bodies
    Image: SheKnows Design
    best dresses for pear shaped bodies
    Image: SheKnows Design

    Originally published Aug. 2011. Updated May 2016.


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    We're not sure who made up the rule that you can't wear white after Labor Day, but we do know that we're ready for this rumor to die once and for all. Far beyond the dogs days of summer, we've come up with seven great reasons to rock white all year long (as if you needed an excuse to break all the fashion rules).

    Hey, the celebs are doing it -- so at least you know you're in good company:

    1. Pair white with leather

    Kim Kardashian white turtleneck tank
    Image: WENN.com

    There's nothing that screams fall more than leather. So why not do as Kim Kardashian did and rock a white turtleneck tank (also very autumn-appropriate) with a pair of black leather pants? This outfit is perfect for late September or early October, when the weather's just starting to cool off and you don't quite need a jacket.

    More: White-out! Must-have little white fashion pieces

    2. Sport some faux fur

    Olivia Palermo fur vest
    Image: Michael Carpenter/WENN.com

    There's no denying the fact that white is one of Olivia Palermo's favorite colors. The socialite and style icon wears it very well here, tossing a brown fur vest over the top of her wintery white suit. Not a fan of pantsuits? Try a white faux fur vest styled with a plain black long-sleeve top (a la Palermo), a pair of skinny jeans and some pointy-toe heels or suede boots.

    Next Up: Slip into white skinnies

    3. Slip into white skinnies

    Eva Longoria white skinny jeans
    Image: WENN.com

    No need to tuck your white skinny jeans away for the winter. Instead, break them out on a cold day, and style them with a snuggly sweater like Eva Longoria's. To look a little less summery, opt for a sweater in a dark, jewel-toned color (think purple or navy).

    4. Wear white accessories

    Kylie Minogue white accessories
    Image: WENN.com

    We love how Kylie Minogue accessorized her light brown leather jacket and casual skinnies with a simple white scarf and matching white handbag. It's a fresh, fun take on an otherwise typical fall look. Plus, it brightens up her entire ensemble in a novel way, which we heart.

    More: 7 styles of shoes to make the most out of your summer

    5. Pick heavier fabrics

    Jessica Alba head-to-toe white
    Image: Apega/WENN.com

    Despite its undeniable association with summer, white when worn in heavier fabrics, such as wool, is an extremely winter-friendly hue. Take Jessica Alba for instance. She's sporting a gorgeous, oversized white coat with white dress pants and a coordinating white top. Forget the flimsy silk shirts and cotton tees. This outfit isn't just warm — it's comfy and totally suitable for the season.

    Next Up: Rock a white graphic sweater

    6. Rock a white graphic sweater

    Lauren Conrad Ho! Ho! Ho! sweater
    Image: Apega/WENN.com

    In case you haven't noticed, graphic sweaters are seriously in for fall! Don't go with a cute knit in an expected color though — choose something that's light and fun and out of the box. We're digging Lauren Conrad's casual “Ho! Ho! Ho!” sweater. Dress it up with heels or keep it chill with flats.

    More: 7 Cozy warm sweaters to get you excited for fall

    7. Try off-white

    Kate Middleton cream coat
    Image: WENN.com

    Still a little bit wary of donning full-on white? Experiment with creams and other off-white shades to give you the same effect but not as bright. Kate Middleton looks stunning in this coat, right?

    Originally published Sept. 2015. Updated June 2016.


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    When you think of Elizabeth Arden, you probably conjure up images of pearls, old ladies and Grandma's perfume shelf, right?

    Once upon a time, that was pretty spot on, but those days are over. The well-known beauty product conglomerate has undergone a total makeover and is revealing its new social media voice in this new video, showcasing itself as a company that caters to strong, like-minded women.

    In a world where women are (unfortunately) still struggling to find their footing, it's nice to find companies that have our backs. Elizabeth Arden is a company that's by women, for women, and they're definitely stepping up their game help to make women feel strong and empowered.

    Elizabeth Arden

    Elizabeth Arden

    Won't believe it until you see it? We felt the same way, but with strong female celebs like Chelsea Handler, Iris Apfel, Mia Moretti, Gabi Fresh, Shoshanna Gruss and Karlina Caune leading the way (and the super-sassy video), it's pretty hard to argue. Notice something all these women have in common? They're trailblazing females who have carved their own paths in life — something the new Liz Arden hopes to inspire you to do too.

    In the video, its star-studded list of friends help fictional character Liz Arden modernize her office to match its new, updated outlook. It has changed everything from the rugs on the floor to the paintings on the walls and the books on the shelves. I mean, it's hard to not love a woman who has Bossypants and Why Not Me? on display in her office, am I right?

    This post was sponsored by Elizabeth Arden.


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    Many companies say they're inclusive of all body types, but few truly walk their talk.

    Aerie is one company that's truly committed to being body positive — and it looks like JCPenney is joining those ranks. At least that's the way it seems, based on their latest YouTube video, Here I Am.

    More: Kesha's new butt pic may make haters think twice before body-shaming her

    The video features many outspoken advocates in the body-positive movement — including blogger Gabi Fresh, singer Mary Lambert and Project Runway winner Ashley Nell Tipton — and allows them to tell their stories of how being plus-size has affected their lives.

    JCPenney Here I Am

    JCPenney Here I Am

    "I remember when I was 10, I wanted to be a singer, and... a family member said, 'Sorry, kid, it's not going to happen for you,'" Lambert says.

    "In high school I was one of those girls who was, like, I would be so much prettier if I were thin," Fresh says.

    More: 3 strong women who show that fitness has no age limit

    "As the fifth-grader called hippo... I was spending my entire life trying to change," Baker says.

    But not a single one of them let those words define their lives.

    "Fat girls can do whatever they want... fat girls can run, fat girls can dance, fat girls can have amazing jobs," the women say. "We can walk runways. We can be on the covers of magazines. Wear stripes. Bright colors. I am beautiful; I am sexy. There's no ignoring this when it walks in the door. My size isn't an indicator of my worth."

    The video is, of course, in support of the retailer's plus-size line, but it's a true celebration of women — all women — without any of the condescension that's (unfortunately) part of other body-positive advertorials.

    More: The first male plus-size model doesn't get half the crap female models do

    "There is true beauty in individuality," JCPenney writes on their YouTube page. "So, when we start letting go of preconceived notions of who someone is based on what they look like on the outside, we all take one step closer to body positivity."


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    The best moment of the 2016 BET Awards wasn't on stage — it was on the red (gray) carpet before the show. Beyoncé's "Formation" dancers commanded attention as they made their way into the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles.

    Image: Parabas Griffin/BET/Getty Images

    Their fashion was as diverse as the dancers themselves, with each woman wearing a completely different style — we spotted white fur coats, floral suits, cropped separates, off-the-shoulder tops and a lot of in-your-face color and prints.

    Image: Parabas Griffin/BET/Getty Images

    These ladies definitely came to take control, and it worked.

    More: 50 blond celebrities who always look fierce

    Their leader, Queen Bey, is up for two awards at the show: Best Female R&B/Pop Artist and Video of the Year.

    Image: Parabas Griffin/BET/Getty Images

    There is also talk of a surprise performance, and we're in for something mind-blowing, judging just from the dancers' entrance.

    Formation Dancers Walk

    Formation Dancers Walk

    Most importantly, this sends a strong message to all women — don't be afraid to take charge and be yourself.

    Before you go, check out the all of the BET Awards outfits:

    BET Outits
    Image: Allen Berezovsky/WireImage/Getty Images

    More: There's nothing quite like the Tony Awards' classy red carpet fashion


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    I'm embarrassed to admit how many times I've been offered free Botox, free Kybella, free breast augmentation, free you name it, it's free. If I actually took everyone up on their kind offers, I would have morphed back into a zygote by now.

    While I get the argument that beauty is skin deep and I agree, that logic can also be flipped on its head. Since physical appearances aren't everything, shouldn't we all be able to do whatever we want to our bodies without judgment?

    More: I had $8k in facial plastic surgery and it worked wonders on my self-esteem

    If you can't tell, I'm feeling defensive. And my turtle shell morphed completely into steel the morning I went to New York City to pay Dr. Richard Swift a visit and take him up on his offer for free Juvederm Voluma.

    I just turned 38 and my somewhat hollow face has started to make me look tired. It's cute when you're young and have that line of definition beneath your cheekbones and can walk around pretending you're from Eastern Europe and work in Vogue's shoe closet. But after a few years, an angular face and a lack of facial volume tells the world: I'm exhausted, famished and in need of hugs. Will I take a few vials of Juvederm Voluma to go with that hug? If a well-respected plastic surgeon like Dr. Swift has agreed to work his magic with a needle, consider me the Real Housewife who once defaulted on her student loan.

    Voluma is a relatively new filler by Allergan, the same folks who brought you Botox. This gel injectable is made from hyaluronic acid (a molecule composed of sugar that our bodies naturally produce) and is inserted deep into the facial tissue. So far, Voluma has only been approved for use in the cheek area. The biggest difference between Voluma and other injectables is that it is said to last up to two years (most fillers last a maximum of nine months to one year).

    More: You can actually tell how fast you're aging and it's pretty fascinating

    It would be catty and possibly libelous to go into detail about certain gorgeous celebrities over the age of 30 who plastic surgeons (Dr. Swift, I should mention, is not one) have told me are definitely using Voluma, but let's just say it's a powerful secret weapon that few people are copping to using and we'll leave it at that.

    Dr. Swift's Upper East Side office is located in the same building as people with Tibetan Mastiffs named Thane. I showed up at 10 a.m. for our appointment and there were already well-dressed women waiting for their beauty pick-me-ups. They looked completely at ease, reading magazines, checking their phones, prepared to dart in and dart out without a second thought. And I was terrified. Embarrassed. Part of me felt like a fraud. I grew up admiring women like Kim Gordon from Sonic Youth, women who might find this choice horribly un-feminist.

    Well, to hell with all of that, I told myself. My face, my decision — those were my final thoughts before meeting Dr. Swift and begging him not to make me look like a cat.

    At this point, I'll take a moment to debunk a cosmetic treatment myth: The only way you'll walk out of a doctor's office with cheetah face is if you a) request many procedures at once and ignore the advice of your board-certified plastic surgeon or b) have visited a cheap medispa that does not employ a board-certified and credible plastic surgeon. If you find yourself in the second scenario, run like the wind and don't look back.

    Dr. Swift was patient, thorough and clear about the procedure and what to expect. I would probably experience swelling for a few days and should sleep on my back. After 72 hours, the injectable would set, but I was told not to massage my face or apply direct pressure until then.

    A numbing cream was applied to my cheeks and Dr. Swift let it work its magic for about 10 minutes while he explained that Voluma is considered a superior filler for long-term results but can cause lumps and bumps, tenderness and redness. In extreme cases where the Voluma creates an unflattering bump, hyaluronidaise can be injected into the area to dissolve the filler — not something you want to do, but a nice thing to know when you're sitting in front of a doctor contemplating running out the door.

    More: Vampire breast lift claims perky results without surgery

    Dr. Swift inserted the first needle directly beneath my cheekbone and kept it in my skin for a few seconds while he worked the product into place using both the needle and his finger. It wasn't painful, but it was an odd sensation — I felt like a flank steak in the hands of the most graceful butcher on Earth. He inserted the needle about three or four times into each cheek and told me he could see a difference already. Each time he removed the needle, he placed gauze over my cheek lightly to control the bleeding — which was minimal.

    In less than 10 minutes, the procedure was over. Dr. Swift handed me a mirror and an ice pack that I was told to apply to my face every few hours for the next 24 hours to reduce swelling. I was shocked to see needle marks and redness (seriously, what was I expecting?) and volume restored to my cheeks. Even better: I looked like the exact same person if you took that person, added a pound of flesh in all the right places and sent her to Jamaica to relax on the beach for a week.

    Fast forward two hours. I made the mistake of checking myself out in the mirror too soon. I had started to bruise around my left cheek and right nasolabial fold, something that I knew might happen but wasn't prepared to see. I now looked like the most well-rested Frankenstein on the Upper East Side.

    More: The 6 hottest trends in plastic surgery right now

    It took about two weeks for the bruising to go away and I also experienced a day or two immediately after the procedure where my cheeks looked puffy and swollen. My face never hurt, but my skin felt tight for a few days. The most worrisome side effect of Voluma was the appearance of a lump on my cheek, one you couldn't see but that I could feel. The lump resolved itself in about three weeks, but if I hadn't had a professional like Dr. Swift to answer my calls and ease my worried mind, I would have probably run back to a medispa to demand the Voluma be removed, which would have been hasty on my part.

    Here's the craziest thing about injections like Voluma: I assumed everyone would be able to tell I did something different to my face, but not one person — not even my husband — said anything about it. Had I spent $2,000 or more on the procedure (prices vary depending on where you live and your plastic surgeon's level of expertise), I may have demanded that they take a closer look at my face. But if the whole point of getting something done is to look as natural as possible, Voluma is fantastic because the results are very subtle.

    Voluma hasn't changed my life and it hasn't taken away my bad days, but it has taken my mind off of a part of my body that irked me. And that's key to remember: Cosmetic procedures can make us feel happier about our appearance, but they won't provide actual happiness. That part is still up to us.


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    I can give myself a fully transformative makeover, but when it comes to straightening my hair, I am still hesitant.

    When most people think about body positivity, they apply it to the actual body, including size, shape and height. This is all valid, considering that a lot of discrimination, sexism and plain-old bullying stems from a person’s body type. Girls in magazines, Photoshop and the fashion industry all tell us that skinny is better, and a majority of body shaming comes in that form.

    However, we might not realize that there are several other forms of body shaming that are thrust upon women on a daily basis that we feel guilt or embarrassment about, when we should not. This includes the quality of our skin, the shape of our noses, the amount of body hair we have and so many more superficial “problems” the media has told us we have.

    More: Report says hot drinks may cause cancer, but it has to be really, really hot

    I know it seems that being aware of the institutions put against women to criticize their appearance means that it is easier to feel confident in your own skin. I wish that were true, but I, like many other women, feel the pressure of white American beauty standards when it comes to getting ready in the morning. I can put on a full face of makeup or dress in a certain style without a problem because I feel like I am enhancing the features I already have.

    However, when it comes to doing my hair, I feel extreme guilt the second I plug in my hair straightener. Sure, putting on makeup covers up some of my blemishes, but people can still see my face. When I straighten my curly hair, I am directly covering up and altering a part of myself that was naturally given to me, that I should be proud of.

    I don’t even straighten my hair that often — probably once or twice every few months — yet it’s still an activity that I regret the entire time I am doing it. Whenever I go out with straight hair, I feel like I am telling the world that I am not proud of my natural appearance and that I have to conform to beauty standards in order to love myself.

    It doesn’t help that I get more compliments when my hair is straightened. It may be because it is a different style, but it can feel like I’m being praised for looking completely unlike myself. I fear that I’ll meet somebody while my hair is straight and that image of me will be imprinted in their brain forever.

    Simply rereading what I have written, I sound ridiculous. But that is the point: Even though I and many other women know that our insecurities are pointless and fake, we still feel them and act on them. It’s important to remember that that is OK. It is completely OK to feel insecure about our appearances, as long as we try to fight them every day. In some cases, that will include wearing a piece of clothing regardless of how other people might think you look. In my case, it includes straightening my hair without fearing that I am encouraging the oppression of women and the implementation of beauty standards.

    More: Yoga exercises that support your immune system

    Every woman has their own journey when it comes to body-related self-acceptance and self-love. What matters not is that we let it get to us, but rather that we let it get to us, then take a step back, realize that our looks do not define our worth, and get back to work!


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    If your love of exfoliants and all kinds of yummy beauty products is running up a hefty bill, this DIY trend has your name all over it. To keep things cheap and easy (and totally pinnable), we've put together four of our favorite natural exfoliators you can make at home.

    More: 9 apple cider vinegar beauty benefits you're missing out on

    Not only does exfoliating slough away dead skin cells, but it also unclogs the oil and dirt that lives in your pores and causes breakouts. Most store-bought exfoliating products contain harsh chemicals and dozens of questionable ingredients that have unknown benefits — another reason to make your own. As with any other exfoliating treatments, these should be used two to three times a week, not every day. And keep in mind that when trying a new skin care product (or in this case, recipe), test it out before you go to bed. That way, if you have an adverse reaction, you can give your skin time to recover while you sleep.

    Basic baking soda scrub

    Baking soda
    Image: Geo-grafika/Getty Images

    The range of what baking soda can do just seems to be getting wider and wider. It can freshen the air, remove stains, clean showers and sinks, and trigger explosions in science fair volcanoes. Oh yes, we can use it to bake, too. But there is one more non-food-related use to add to baking soda’s resume: face exfoliant. The grains in baking soda are just the right size to act as a gentle exfoliant, and many claim that it has helped clear up acne.

    Ingredients:

    • Baking soda
    • Facial cleanser
    • Water

    Directions:

    1. Mix baking soda to your facial cleanser to make it an exfoliating cleanser.
    2. You can also make a paste of just baking soda and water.
    3. Gently rub it onto your skin and leave it on for five to ten minutes before rinsing off.

    Next Up: Nourishing sugar scrub

    Nourishing sugar scrub

    Raw sugar
    Image: fatihhoca/Getty Images

    Granulated sugar is another wonderful, natural exfoliant. Mix it with honey, which contains powerful antioxidant and antimicrobial properties, and a little lemon for clarifying purposes, and you have a wonderfully nourishing and effective face scrub.

    More: 3 DIY beauty recipes that use beeswax to heal dry skin

    Ingredients:

    • 1/2 tsp. honey
    • 1 tsp. raw sugar
    • Fresh lemon juice

    Directions:

    1. Combine 1 teaspoon sugar with 1/2 teaspoon honey and a squeeze of fresh lemon juice.
    2. Mix ingredients well.
    3. If the mixture is a little loose, add a bit more sugar.

    Next Up: Invigorating coffee scrub

    Invigorating coffee scrub

    Coffee scrub
    Image: Sohadiszno/Getty Images

    Coffee is another fantastic natural exfoliant. It contains caffeic acid, which has anti-inflammatory effects and can boost collagen production. Just as coffee stimulates our body in the morning, it can serve as a skin stimulant as well.

    Ingredients:

    • 1 tbsp of ground coffee
    • 1 tbsp of water or olive oil

    Directions:

    1. To make the scrub, combine 1 tablespoon of ground coffee with 1 tablespoon of water or olive oil.
    2. To make this inexpensive face scrub even more economical, save the wet coffee grounds from your brewed morning coffee and use those.
    3. If you use olive oil, skip applying a moisturizer afterward, as olive oil will leave your skin super-moisturized.

    Side note: Since coffee grinds can clog drains, apply the scrub and buff off the grounds over a plugged sink so that you can wipe them out or use a mesh drain strainer to catch them before they go down your pipes.

    Next Up: Soothing oatmeal scrub

    Soothing oatmeal scrub

    Oatmeal
    Image: minadezhda/Getty Images

    People who use oatmeal as a natural face scrub swear by it, and now I know why. Ground oatmeal not only serves as a wonderful exfoliant, but it also absorbs and removes surface dirt and impurities while leaving your skin nourished and hydrated. It has been known to soothe and heal everything from acne to sunburn to dry, flaky skin. Given its gentle nature, it is also ideal for those with sensitive skin.

    Ingredients:

    • 1 tbsp. ground oatmeal
    • 1/4 tsp. salt
    • 1tsp. water or paste

    Directions:

    1. Combine ground oatmeal with salt, which boosts the face treatment's exfoliating properties
    2. 1 teaspoon of water or olive oil to make it into a paste.
    3. Gently rub it onto you skin in circular motions, let sit for five to ten minutes and rinse.

    Originally published Aug. 2015. Updated June 2016.


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    Wear too much clothing and you're matronly or a prude. Wear too little and you're a whore. But what happens when you prefer to be more covered up? If you're like me, a modest dresser, you find that you're constantly going against the mainstream. I'm a Muslim woman who wears the headscarf, and my conservative dress is regulated in several countries — banned in some and encouraged in others.

    More: Why I’m proud of my family’s history of feminist activism

    To many, my choice of covering up is a sign of oppression and working against the liberations women have achieved. I disagree. My choice to dress modestly is an equally liberating expression of ownership of my own body. Thankfully, I live in the U.S. I don't face any state-mandated guidelines on my dress, but I still must build my outfits from the options available to me. The message I receive is clear: Wear less.

    Women's clothing used to be cumbersome and heavy. The modern bikini was a scandal when it was introduced by French engineer Louis Réard on July 5, 1946. When he unveiled his outfit, he described it as "smaller than the world's smallest swimsuit." Indeed, it was so small that models refused to wear it. Eventually, he had to settle on nude dancer Micheline Bernardini to model his new swimsuit.

    More: Women answer: Do you consider yourself a feminist?

    At that time, women's clothing had been steadily pairing down from the heavy garments of the past. The acceptance of the bikini marked a clear shift to "skin is in" and "less is more." In fact, women's liberation has often been tied to their freedom to wear less. Since we are still operating in a patriarchal world that maintains traditional notions of dress, today's women are in a constant balancing act of how much to wear.

    The pressures on women to get the appropriate amount of coverage right is aptly illustrated by a photography project by Rosea Lake titled Judgments.

    Judgements

    Judgements

    Current trends make shopping for modest clothing a needle in a haystack search. I've spent hours going through racks or scrolling through pages of mini, sheer, backless and strapless garments, looking for a maxi dress with sleeves. In fact, the struggle lead me to start a company that offers stylish modest clothing: Mode-sty.

    This expectation is being challenged by Allison Josephs, blogger at Jew in the City. She, like me, is a modest dresser, and she has come out with a video illustrating how much more skin women are encouraged to show compared to men. She's dubbed this discrepancy "The Skin Gap."

    However you choose to dress, it is nearly impossible to ignore that the current expectation is that women show some skin in nearly every setting. The question is, what do we want to do about it?

    More: Feminist artists who are celebrating women's sexuality


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    Another Wimbledon, another clothing controversy. Which, let's face it, is just as much of a tradition as strawberries and cream.

    More: Stop telling me I'm oppressed because I wear modest clothing

    Back in 1919 the female winner, Frenchwoman Suzanne Lenglen, was raising eyebrows for competing in a short-sleeved, calf-length dress without a petticoat. (She also made something of a statement by rocking a thick headband on court.)

    In 1949 the All England Club overreacted only slightly by accusing doubles finalist Gorgeous Gussie Moran of bringing "vulgarity and sin into tennis" with her short dress/lace knicker combo.

    It was a case of all style and no substance for Linda Siegel in 1979; she competed against Billie Jean King in a low-cut top that became lower and lower as the game went on.

    American player Anne White’s 1985 shiny white catsuit caused a stir by apparently distracting her opponent Pam Shriver so much that she lost. Shriver even lodged an official complaint, saying White shouldn't be allowed to wear a catsuit ever again.

    It's not only the women of Wimbledon who've caused a fuss with their on-court attire. In 1987 Pat Cash broke one of Wimbledon's rules (accessories must be predominantly white) by wearing a black-and-white-checked bandana. And Andre Agassi, lover of fluorescent cycling shorts under demin hot pants (because why not?) actually refused to play at Wimbledon because of the strict dress code. However he broke his ban in 1991 and made sure he played by the rules, turning up in regulation tennis whites.

    Arguably the most fashion-forward Wimbledon players are Serena and Venus Williams. In 2008 Serena warmed up in a white trench coat. In 2011 Venus wore a white playsuit with gold underpants. The same year American player Bethanie Mattek-Sands became the Lady Gaga of Wimbledon, wearing a coat made of, um, tennis balls.

    However this year's controversial garment is a little different. At first glance the Nike "Premier Slam" (£75) looks like a simple white tennis dress.

    More: JC Penney's new ad features the best body-positive message we've seen

    Bucking the figure-hugging trend favoured by female players, it's super flimsy — so much so that it's been dubbed the Nike "nightie." It was worn by several players during the tournament's opening matches, including Brit competitor Katie Swan, the Czech Republic's Lucie Safarova and China's Saisai Zheng.

    Swan, 17, was beaten by Hungary's Timea Babos 6–2 6–3 and several commentators and spectators have speculated that the Premier Slam dress was so ill-fitting that it actually contributed to her defeat. She was seen to be struggling with the dress throughout the game and eventually was forced to tuck it into the bottom of her shorts.

    The 440th ranked player revealed that the dress had to be adjusted before she took to the court but played down its effect on her game. "There was a slit in the sides before," she said. "I think they fixed that. I found it comfortable. I was fine in it. It was like floating a little bit, so I just kind of tucked it under."

    Before the alterations were made other female players in the run-up to Wimbledon had to improvise. Brit Katie Boulter, 19, fashioned a belt from a hairband to keep it in place and Czech Lucie Hradecka, wore hers with knee-length leggings underneath.

    Others refused to wear it, such as Germany's Sabine Lisicki, who wore a skirt and vest top instead for her victorious first-round match. "I tried it on but didn't feel comfortable showing that much," said the 26-year-old former Wimbledon finalist. "For me, the most important thing is to feel comfortable and not to think about anything."

    Comfort has to be key when it comes to sportswear (for women and men) but the issue here shouldn't be how flimsy or revealing the dress is. What's the big deal if female players show their shorts underneath their dress? What's far more important is whether a garment affects a player's game so much that they lose focus or are actually physically restricted from playing to their full capability. You'd think a company like Nike would spend the necessary time and money testing their garments to make sure wearing them can be nothing but a positive experience.

    More: 50 Kate Middleton outfits that rocked our world


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    I used to believe that my skin would never change and always stay as tight, ageless and flawless as it was in my younger years. I never imagined that someday I would be trying every product on the market to help my skin stay looking young. I grew up, reality set in and I realized that aging is inevitable. I can't rewrite history or take back all those days I spent in the sun, but I can make choices today that will help slow and reverse the effects of aging on my skin.

    Lunch Pails and Lipstick
    Image: Lunch Pails and Lipstick

    1. You're never too young to start a great anti-aging skincare routine. In fact, right now is the perfect time to instill good habits and find products you like. Test out different moisturizers, serums and creams until you find a combo that works for you. You won't know the fantastic results that a serum can provide until you give one a try. Serums have a high concentration of active ingredients and are designed to deliver the product deeper into the skin for maximum anti-aging benefits. Find a quality serum that works now and you will thank yourself years later.

    2. Anti-aging products don't have to be expensive. I used to think that the more expensive, the better the quality. This is so far from the truth. You can find affordable products that will change your skin if you know what to look for. I recommend No7 Protect & Perfect Intense Advanced Serum to everyone. You can grab it the next time you are in Target for less than $30. This serum is clinically proven to reduce the appearance of lines and wrinkles in just four weeks, and the results continue to get better over time. Don't let your budget keep you from taking care of your skin.

    Lunch Pails and Lipstick2
    Image: Lunch Pails and Lipstick

    Lunch Pails and Lipstick3
    Image: Lunch Pails and Lipstick3

    3. Add a serum to your moisturizing routine. A moisturizers' main job is to hydrate and protect the skin by acting as a barrier on the surface of the skin. Serums are applied under a moisturizer, and although they can provide some hydration benefits, the primary function of a serum is to combat aging. They should not replace a moisturizer, but they can deliver spectacular anti-aging results.

    4. Protecting your skin from the sun doesn't have to be a hassle. When I was younger, I complained about how thick sunscreen was. I didn't love how it left a white film on my face and hated having to use it. Little did I know, sunscreen doesn't have to be thick, white and tough to apply. Sunscreen is included in a number of beauty products these days. Look for a tinted moisturizer with SPF included to speed up your morning routine and protect your skin.

    5. In retinol we trust! You don't need retinol every night, but applying it a couple times a week will help combat aging. It's easy to use and does magical things for skin. It brightens, reduces discoloration and even helps treat acne. It's my anti-aging secret weapon of choice and I like that No7 Protect & Perfect Intense Advanced Serum contains retinol.

    6. Eye cream is not just for old women. Start using an eye cream when you're young and your older-self will thank you for it. The skin around our eyes dries out as we age and often makes us look older than we are. Luckily, applying a moisturizing eye cream can fight off the drying process and keep skin looking younger.

    This post is part of a sponsored collaboration between No7 and SheKnows


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    I've said it before, but it bears repeating — skincare doesn't have to be expensive. You'd be surprised at what you can find at the drugstore these days.

    I ignored my skin for years, not starting a good skincare routine until I was in my mid-40s. Now I have sun damage in the form of brown spots and wrinkles. I talk a lot about the importance of serums in your skincare routine. The addition of a serum to your regimen will drastically improve the overall look of your complexion. Serums contain the highest concentration of active ingredients. One drugstore product I swear by is No7 Protect & Perfect Intense Advanced Serum.

    no7 skin serum
    Image: Target

    I love the way the serum glides on my skin, instantly making it feel smoother. It also makes my makeup apply better and last longer, eliminating the need for a separate primer. I appreciate that is fragrance-free too — I don't like highly scented skincare that interferes with my perfume.

    No7 Protect & Perfect Intense Advanced Serum can be found at Target for under $30! Bottom Line: No7 Protect & Perfect Intense Advanced Serum is not only the bestselling anti-aging serum in the UK, but it is also the first serum clinically proven to deliver anti-winkle results that actually get even better over time, so you can be sure that the longer you use it, the better results you will see! It's definitely worth a try and won't break the bank!

    This post is part of a sponsored collaboration between No7 and SheKnows


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    Coming out of the dry, itchy skin phase of winter, the healthy glow of sun-kissed skin is more than welcome during the warmer months. But stretching that glow out all summer long can be tricky, especially when you spend your days basking in the UV light and stale central cooling of an office. 


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    When Alicia Keys recently revealed her no-makeup selfie, I couldn't have been the only who stared in awe at how beautiful her skin was. Yeah, she's a celebrity (and she may just have great genetics), but honestly, having great skin doesn't have to cost a lot of money or take a lot of time. Try incorporating these habits into your routine for 30 days and see what a difference it can make with your skin.

    1. Drink More Water

    Right, so you've heard this one before. But that's because it's a fact that proper hydration makes all our systems work properly — that includes the skin. When you're dehydrated, your skin can look more wrinkled. Isn't that a great reason to sip up? Keep in mind that water intake can vary per person and you should drink more when exercising or in the sun.

    2. Stay Out of the Sun

    I know what you're thinking - stay out of the sun during prime swimming season? But fact is, the sun's ultraviolet rays are aging your skin. Commit to doing more than simply wearing sunscreen on your face every day. For younger-looking skin, you need to wear SPF 30 on your face; wear large sunglasses when outside to prevent squinting and further wrinkles from forming; and also wear a wide-brimmed hat to shade the face even further.

    3. Break Bad Habits

    This may seem obvious, but habits such as staying up late, drinking heavily, smoking and being stressed are just a small number of things that contribute to making our skin look older than it is. Start breaking these bad habits (slowly) and watch your skin change right before your eyes.

    4. Use Efficacious Products

    Image: Target

    You may already have your skin-care regimen down pat, but adding a serum into your routine can make a noticeable difference. For fast results, I like No7 Protect & Perfect Intense Advanced Serum. This powerful serum is the U.K.'s best-selling anti-aging serum, and it is now available in the U.S.

    Made with No7’s renowned anti-aging peptide MATRIXYL 3000 Plus™ that works to help repair damaged skin and restore key proteins that often break down as we age and is clinically proven to reduce the appearance of lines and wrinkles in just four weeks! I noticed that my skin started to look younger two weeks after I started using it. No7 Protect & Perfect Intense Advanced Serum is available for under $30 at Target.

    5. Get More Sleep

    There is such a thing as beauty sleep. Getting into a regular sleeping pattern with consistent 7–8 hours of sleep each night will help you so much more than you think. The body repairs and recovers itself while you sleep — that includes your skin. Apply No7 Protect & Perfect Intense Advanced Serum under moisturizer twice a day, once in the AM and once in the PM, to deliver even better anti-aging benefits. If you have trouble falling asleep, invest in a silky sleep mask, turn off the TV and be sure to stay off the computer and mobile devices for at least 30 minutes before retiring for the night.

    This post is part of a sponsored collaboration between No7 and SheKnows


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    The internet is flooded with "what not to wear at a wedding" type articles, most of which police what we, as women, should wear on our bodies. And one of the most universal rules seems to be "nothing too sexy." So what happens when you ignore the rules entirely? Fitness instructor Liz Krueger found this out the hard way when she wore a skintight dress to a wedding.

    More: The anti-bride's guide to planning a nontraditional wedding

    "If only I knew that choosing this dress for a wedding on a 90 degree day meant so many women would be outrightly rude to me, and even come up behind me slap my ass as I'm standing alone," writes Krueger on Instagram. She adds that one guest even spilled a beer on her on purpose, hashtagging #adultsarebullystoo.

    Liz Kruger instagram

    Liz Kruger instagram

    Radio station The Breeze Waikato, which shared her story on its Facebook page, asked the internet: "Did she bring ANY of this on herself by wearing this dress to a wedding?"

    The idea that we bring bullying on ourselves is incredibly dangerous, as it legitimizes forms of sexual harassment by blaming the victim. But sadly, the majority of the respondents were quick to say that this woman should have known she'd get a reaction out of guests. Others said that, while she did look great, this was not appropriate for a wedding. And those were the more measured responses — several more Facebook users leaped at the chance to slut-shame this woman, saying things like, "Her sorry ass needs to grow up get the hell out of her College days and become a respectable woman."

    Liz Krueger

    Liz Krueger

    More: 15 couples reveal what really happened on their wedding night

    What's most troubling about this victim-blaming type of reaction is that many who hold these misogynistic views seem to be women themselves. A study by the U.K. think tank Demos found that women were almost as likely to use slut-shaming words online as men were. The researchers gathered their data by tracking how many times accounts associated with male and female usernames used the words “slut,” “whore” or “rape,” both casually and offensively. While those with male usernames used the words 116,530 times, those with female names did so 94,546 times.

    Liz Krueger looks

    Liz Krueger looks

    We have to stop policing what other women wear. As someone getting married herself soon, I may have weddings on the brain, but I honestly couldn't care less what my guests wear. As long as people are happy and comfortable, then so am I.

    Krueger has since tried to get the hashtag #KruegerKindness off the ground, sparking a movement where we respect other women's rights to wear whatever they feel best in.

    "I hope #KruegerKindness can continue to be spread worldwide bc hatred isn't something specific to me and my situation, it's everywhere," Krueger writes on Instagram.

    More: How much your wedding photographer should cost


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    While my skin is still in relatively good condition, it has shown the effects of too much sun and, of course, aging and wrinkles. I've learned the benefits of a more comprehensive skin-care regimen as I've gotten older.

    One of things I wish I had known is that adding a serum to a skincare regimen serves a different purpose than just using a moisturizer alone. A serum is applied before a moisturizer and can deliver more concentrated anti-aging ingredients. A moisturizer's purpose, on the other hand, is mainly to hydrate the skin.

    Image: Target

    The best part is you don't have to wait to be a certain age to start using a serum; the earlier the better! No7 & Protect & Perfect Intense Advanced Serum is the best-selling anti-aging serum in the U.K. It's backed by science, has been studied in clinical trials of over 2,600 women and is proven to reduce the appearance of lines and wrinkles in just 4 weeks. You can be sure that the longer you use it, the better the results you'll see!

    I've been using No7 Protect & Perfect Intense Advanced Serum and really like it. It's a lightweight serum that is formulated with MATRIXYL 3000 Plus™, hyaluronic acid and an antioxidant complex that includes a patented combination of Vitamin C, mulberry extracts and ginseng. It's also hypoallergenic and fragrance-free. It absorbs quickly into the skin and doesn't leave a residue. I apply it in the morning and evening to clean skin and follow with a moisturizer.

    You can find No7 Protect & Perfect Intense Advanced Serum at Target for under $30, proving that an effective anti-aging serum doesn't have to be expensive. Do you use a serum as part of your anti-aging regimen? I wish I had started earlier!

    This post is part of a sponsored collaboration between No7 and SheKnows


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