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Beauty, Hairstyles, Fashion Trends & More | SheKnows

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    When you have dry skin, winter can feel like a death sentence. Sounds dramatic, but when you mix cold weather conditions like sleet and harsh winds with dry, forced indoor heat, you can get majorly flaky, uncomfortable skin that’s prone to irritation and redness. You might think the solution is to douse yourself with the nearest tub of Vaseline or something equally occlusive, but unless you layer a good hydrating moisturizer for dry skin underneath it, you’ll just be sealing in the dryness.

    More: The 19 best beauty products to buy at Free People this winter

    Before you pick up just any moisturizer, know what to look for first: A formula with hydrators like hyaluronic acid, glycerin, or propylene glycol are all great options, and if your skin is particularly sensitive, make sure it’s fragrance-free. Once Ahead, seven of our favorite moisturizers for dry skin that’ll keep your complexion from flaking off this winter.

    Eucerin Q10 Anti-Wrinkle Sensitive Skin Cream

    Eucerin Q10 Anti-Wrinkle Sensitive Skin Cream
    Image: Walmart

    Eucerin Q10 Anti-Wrinkle Sensitive Skin Cream (Walmart, $7.34)

    CeraVe Moisturizing Cream

    CeraVe Moisturizing Cream
    Image: Ulta

    CeraVe Moisturizing Cream (Ulta, $15.99)

    EltaMD Moisturizer

    EltaMD Moisturizer
    Image: Dermstore

    EltaMD Moisturizer (Dermstore, $11.50)

    Cetaphil Moisturizing Cream

    Cetaphil Moisturizing Cream
    Image: Ulta

    Cetaphil Moisturizing Cream (Ulta, $15.49)

    Avene Tolérance Extrême Cream

    Avene Tolérance Extrême Cream
    Image: Avene

    Avene Tolérance Extrême Cream (Avene, $38)

    Dermalogica Intensive Moisture Balance

    Dermalogica Intensive Moisture Balance
    Image: Dermalogica

    Dermalogica Intensive Moisture Balance (Dermalogica, $66)

    First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair® Cream Intense Hydration

    First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair® Cream Intense Hydration
    Image: Sephora

    First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair® Cream Intense Hydration (Sephora, $30)


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    Ah, the annual office holiday party—such an interesting, mandatory event that requires you to not only look like you put some effort into your appearance, but also not enough effort that you look like the fanciest person there. It’s like a first date…but with your boss. Fun, right?

    More: 8 quick and easy hairstyles for when you have absolutely no time

    But since you already have the outfit and the makeup and the number-of-drinks-to-appropriately-drink to worry about (although, for your sake, we hope you don’t need to “worry” about any of these things), we figured we’d take away any hair stress with five totally doable, and relatively quick, hairstyles. Each requires just a few bobby pins and hair ties, and each can be done on almost every hair length and type. Scroll down to see our favorites, and get ready to feel somewhat less self-conscious during your next holiday office party.

    Triple-Bun Updo

    Holiday triple-bun Updo 1

    Holiday triple-bun Updo 1

    Section off your hair into a half-up ponytail, then twist the ends into a bun and pin in place. Then, scoop and twist the sides of your hair (the inch of hair above your ears) back and into another bun, clipping it in place with a gold barrette. Twist the remaining hair hanging loosely into a bun at the nape of your neck and pin in place.

    Teeny, Tiny, Side Braid

    Holiday tiny braid 2

    Holiday tiny braid 2

    Not a fan of updos? Snazz up your usual loose hairstyle by taking the two-inch section of hair above your ear and braid it back behind your ear, tying it off with a tiny clear elastic. Lightly curl the rest of your hair for a soft, wavy finish.

    Side Twist-Back

    Holiday Side Twist-Back 3

    Holiday Side Twist-Back 3

    Make a side part, then, on the side with less hair, create three loose, one-inch twists in a row, twisting to the back of our head, then pinning each in place with a bobby pin that matches your hair color.

    Twist-Out Bun

    Holiday twist-out bun 4

    Holiday twist-out bun 4

    Create deep side part, then flat-twist one side of your hair (using a two-strand twist) from the edge of your hairline to the back of your head, pinning the twist in place at the nape of your neck. Gather the rest of your hair—pulling a few face-framing curls out to drape across your forehead, first—and twist and pin it into a low chignon.

    Gold-Looped Pony

    Holiday gold-Looped Pony 5

    Holiday gold-Looped Pony 5

    Scoop your hair into a half-ponytail and secure it with a clear elastic a few inches above the nape of your neck (this style should look loose and carefree, so keep the ponytail low). Slip a gold hair cuff, like the L. Erickson Cuff Ponytail Holder, over your ponytail and twist and wrap it around the clear elastic. On the last pass over your ponytail, pull your hair only halfway through the cuff, forming a little loop of hair.

    Before you go, check out our slideshow below.

    21 versatile cocktail dresses to get you through the holidays
    Image: Natalie Cosgrove/SheKnows

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    The holidays are, uh, pretty stressful. Unless you’re planning to stay inside and see literally nobody except your kids and spouse all month (lucky you), you’ll probably have to make at least one public appearance at a Christmas party or family dinner, meaning you’ll have to wash your hair, put on non-yoga pants, and, you know, try.

    More: Christmas sweater nail design

    Which is why we’re really into the idea of holiday-themed nails. Because even if you throw your hair into a topknot and barely manage to swipe concealer under your eyes before the doorbell rings, you’ll still feel festive and put together. Holiday nail art is like the Christmas sweater for your hands. So to get you in the spirit, we rounded up our ten favorite Christmas nail designs and inspo pics that literally anyone—even a nail newb—can try on themselves. Scroll down to see our favorites, and then whip out your nail polish tonight. Your hands will thank you for it.

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    Christmas nails 1

    Christmas nails 1

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    Christmas nails 2

    Christmas nails 2

    Subhead 3

    Christmas nails 3

    Christmas nails 3

    Subhead 4

    Chistmas nails 4

    Chistmas nails 4

    Subhead 5

    Christmas nails 5

    Christmas nails 5

    Subhead 6

    Christmas nails 6

    Christmas nails 6

    Subhead 7

    Christmas nails 7

    Christmas nails 7

    Subhead 8

    Christmas nails 8

    Christmas nails 8

    Subhead 9

    Christmas nails 9

    Christmas nails 9

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    Christmas nails 10

    Christmas nails 10


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    If you’ve ever had dry skin or a face full of dry patches, you know how insanely frustrating and fickle they can be to treat. Either you slather on the richest, thicket creams and jellies and wake up with a fun sprinkle of blackheads and bumps, or you try to exfoliate the hell out of them (bad idea) and give yourself a raw, burning face. So let’s stop the guessing game, shall we, and instead use products that actually work, so you can wake up with soft, hydrated skin, even in the middle of winter.

    More: The Weird Beautyblender Hack That Makes My Skin Glowy AF

    Let’s get one thing straight, though: Skin is a complicated beast. Its primary job is to be a protective shield against outside irritants, but every time you skip your moisturizer, or scrub too hard, or get bitch-slapped by the cold, your skin cells lose water, and your skin barrier becomes compromised which can lead to severe irritation, redness, and dryness. So you can’t just slather some lotion on and expect it to fix everything—you need an all-around approach to getting rid of dry patches (provided they aren’t caused by eczema or psoriasis, which are two skin conditions that definitely need a dermatologist’s touch). Keep reading to find out what you can do tonight to wake up with hydrated, glowing skin.

    Ignore The Pretty Packaging

    Sure, that Scandinavian face cream in the minimalist white box looks awesome on your vanity, but it may be doing absolutely nothing for your dry patches. To make sure you’re getting the max moisturizing benefits, you need to actually read the ingredients label, not just rely on what the front of the bottle says. After washing your face, apply a face serum with hyaluronic acid, like Paula’s Choice Resist Hyaluronic Acid Booster or Skin Inc. Hyaluronic Acid Serum (hyaluronic acid binds moisture to the skin), then slather on a face cream that contains both glycerin, which pulls in water from the atmosphere like a magnet, and ceramides, which are the fats found naturally in your skin that work to reinforce your skin’s natural moisture barrier. Our absolute favorite: SkinCeuticals Triple Lipid Restore 2:4:2 (it’s expensive, but it will noticeably reduce dry patches after just one use).

    The final—and most important—step to this long regimen is to apply your occlusive moisturizer. An occlusive moisturizer is kind of a misnomer, since it doesn’t actually add any moisture to your skin, it just boosts the absorption of the ingredients beneath it, all while sealing in all of your skin’s moisture. Petroleum jelly is probably the most recognizable occlusive on the market, but if you feel weird about rubbing straight-up Vaseline on your face, try the cult-favorite EltaMD Moisturizer, an occlusive that contains just petrolatum and paraffin, two non-pore-clogging ingredients that lock moisture into your skin for 12 hours.

    Stay Away From Foam

    If your face wash says anything but “creamy” on it, it’s probably destroying your skin. Foaming face washes—like those marketed toward acne-prone or oily skin—are generally filled with sulfates, a type of detergent that strips your skin of its natural oils and leads to insane dryness and irritation (and, if you have combination skin, these detergents can cause your body to over-produce oil to compensate for the dryness). Stick with a creamy, hydrating cleanser, instead, like Neutrogena Ultra Gentle Hydrating Cleanser, and remove makeup with a gentle cleansing oil, like DHC Deep Cleansing Oil, instead of a harsh, alcohol-filled makeup remover.

    Take a Nap in a Rainforest

    Or, make a rainforest at home with a humidifier. Yeah, yeah, getting a humidifier is super revolutionary, we know, but there’s a reason why dermatologists swear by them: They replenish the moisture in your skin that’s being sucked away by the winter air and artificial heat in your house. Basically, trying to get rid of dry patches without using a humidifier at night is like sprinkling water on a burning house. Get a warm-mist humidifier, like the Vick’s Warm-Mist Humidifier with Auto Shut-Off, and turn it on as soon as you get home each day.

    And there you have it: the not-so-secret system for getting rid of dry patches insanely quickly. Sure, there are a billion hydrating masks and scrubs and miracle products you could try (and subsequently hate) instead, but when it comes to dry skin, you don’t need the frills—you just need good, ol’-fashioned moisture.

    More: The Best Instagram Beauty Photos of 2016

    Originally posted on StyleCaster.com


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    Ah, the facial toner—a thing you’ve been told you absolutely need to use, but you actually have no idea why, or what facial toners even do. It’s cool; that’s why we’re here. In the most basic of explanations, toners do exactly as their name suggests: tone and prep your skin for the rest of your skin-care products, and replenish what your skin barrier lost through cleansing. Necessary? Not totally. Unless, of course, you want amazing-looking skin.

    More: The Best Nude Lipsticks for Your Skin Tone

    Toners of yesteryear were generally geared toward oily, acne-prone skin and filled with horribly irritating ingredients, like alcohol and fragrances. But the (good) toners of today are specifically formulated for a bunch of different skin types, with a mix of antioxidants, powerful hydrators, and natural acne-fighters. Just swipe one on with a cotton ball after cleansing, wait for your skin to dry, then continue with your normal skin-care routine. It’s that simple—and yes, they really do work.

    Still, unless you’re a cosmetic chemist or an ingredient nerd, it’s tough to separate the good from the bad toners, though we will say it’s almost always safer to go with a natural product with recognizable ingredients. So to make it easy on you, we rounded up our favorite ten natural toners for every skin type. Pick your favorite, add it to your regimen, then marvel at the fact that you finally own a toner and understand what it does.

    More: The Best Moisturizers for Dry, Sensitive Skin

    For red and irritated skin…

    Thayers Alcohol-Free Rose Petal Witch Hazel Toner
    Image: Thayers

    Thayers Alcohol-Free Rose Petal Witch Hazel Toner (Thayers, $11)

    For hormonal, acne-prone skin…

    SheaMoisture African Black Soap Problem Skin Toner
    Image: SheaMoisture

    SheaMoisture African Black Soap Problem Skin Toner (SheaMoisture, $10)

    For dull, blah skin…

    For skin that’s prone to dark spots and red marks…

    Burt’s Bees Brightening Refining Tonic
    Image: Burt’s Bees

    For skin that needs a quick pick-me-up…

    Aveda Green Science Replenishing Toner
    Image: Aveda

    Aveda Green Science Replenishing Toner (Aveda, $39)

    For combination skin…

    Derma E Purifying Toner Mist
    Image: Derma E

    Derma E Purifying Toner Mist (Derma E, $16)

    For dry, help-me-I’m-dying skin…

    Herbivore Rose Hibiscus Coconut Water Hydrating Face Mist
    Image: Sephora

    Herbivore Rose Hibiscus Coconut Water Hydrating Face Mist (Sephora, $32)

    For oily skin…

    Meow Meow Tweet Face Toner
    Image: Meow Meow Tweet

    Meow Meow Tweet Face Toner (Meow Meow Tweet, $19)

    For skin beset with dry, bumpy patches…

    Paula’s Choice Earth Sourced Purely Natural Refreshing Toner
    Image: Paula’s Choice

    Paula’s Choice Earth Sourced Purely Natural Refreshing Toner (Paula’s Choice, $24)

    For sensitive skin that needs some TLC…

    A Beautiful Life Skin Botanical Toning Mist
    Image: A Beautiful Life

    A Beautiful Life Skin Botanical Toning Mist (A Beautiful Life, $18)

    Originally posted on StyleCaster.com        


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    You’ve heard of Immunocologie. Or better yet, you’ve seen it—all over Instagram, perfectly arranged in its minimalist glory alongside similarly tonal knickknacks and marble facades, just as god intended. And even though our moms drilled into our heads not to judge a beauty product by its packaging, here we are, with vanities filled with all-black or all-white or rose-gold-engraved bottles of vitamin C and pine bark and snail mucus serum. Or is that just me?

    About that mucus serum: I started using Immunocologie’s line—specifically, the Vital Ionic Mist, the Super 7 Elixir, and the Night Protection, which add up to about half my rent—five months ago, partly because I was itching for a new beauty routine, and partly because someone said I’d be into the packaging. (I was.) I’m just shy of 30, and though I don’t have much crepiness to speak of, I quickly found that my skin was bouncier, brighter, and all over less tired-looking, which is more than I can say about most. I liked waking up in the morning to see if I could spot something change overnight. (I couldn’t, of course, because skincare doesn’t work like that, but I’m still using it nearly two seasons later, which is 90 percent longer than most products make it.)

    More: 5 Home Remedies for Dry Skin

    And though you may have already heard about the Super 7 Elixir thanks to its buzzy, albeit gross ingredient—yep, that’s the snail mucus, which is packed with majorly beneficial nutrients for the skin—the rest of the line is just as solid. And the woman behind it, Immunocologie founder Karen Ballou, almost came up with the idea on accident. We spoke to Karen about the seemingly hippy-dippy ingredients in the products, what “natural” means to her, and exactly how she turned a Hodgkin’s Lymphoma diagnosis into a successful beauty brand.

    What exactly was the impetus behind Immunocologie?

    Eight years ago I was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. It was an incredibly humbling time that resulted in a lot of changes in my life, including how I looked at the relationship between my skin and my body. I had an incredibly difficult time finding a skincare product that was as effective and luxurious as what I was using at the time, but which didn’t give me concern for what might be inside of it.

    In addition to that, I felt most brands weren’t truly understanding the skin for what it is: the body’s largest organ and first line of immunological defense. As I went through treatment, my immune health was vital to my survival and I began to really look into the complexity of the immune system and most notably because of my background, what role does the skin’s immunity play in the body. What I discovered was not only that the skin’s immune health is essential to our overall health and wellness, but also that a whitespace existed in the market to make a skincare product that was as natural, efficacious, and luxurious as it was beneficial to the immune health of the skin with full transparency.

    But we encounter so many different things throughout the day. What made you think that it was the cosmetic products you were using that were causing trouble?

    I wasn’t necessarily certain that skincare products were in fact a part of the cause for my diagnosis, but I’ve spent the majority of my career in skincare working behind the scenes on product formulations and brand development and with that comes a certain knowledge about how ingredients are made and what they can do. Though the skincare industry is starting to make a tremendous shift toward natural, for years we weren’t able to produce so-called natural products at scale mainly because the resources and technologies either weren’t there or not developed enough. That meant synthetics, in many cases derived from petroleum, became a standard. Even though the FDA doesn’t regulate skincare as being trans epidermal, we now know 60 percent of what is put on the skin is actually absorbed by the body. So with all the research that’s now come out around ingredients like phenoxyethanol or methylparaben for example, I wanted to make sure I wasn’t taking any risks with my health, or contributing further to its potential decline.

    Immunocologie 1
    Image: Immunocologie

    What other changes did you make when you discovered your lymphoma?

    Well for starters, my diet changed drastically. I cut out red meat, all processed foods, increased my water and supplement intake, on top of all the medicine I was prescribed. I also started exercising regularly. It also just helped me mentally by maintaining focus on beating this disease.

    Tell me a bit about why you use clay in all your products.

    When I was diagnosed, it was recommended to me that I should drink a tablespoon of raw earth clay every day to help calm inflammation in my skin and in my lymph nodes as well as detoxify my body. I knew clay was incredibly mineral rich and detoxifying, however, I was skeptical I would see any real results given the treatment I was receiving. A week or so later, the inflammation had calmed drastically and my skin tone had evened to the point my treatment partners were in awe and asking what I was doing. It was at that point I knew given my background in formulating that we needed to harness this wonder ingredient into a skincare product that could help provide those same nourishing and detoxifying minerals to the skin.

    I reached out to some contacts and it turned out a peer had been working on developing a natural skincare delivery system using the ionic and mineralizing powers of raw earth clays that not only drastically limit the amount of synthetics included in a product without reducing its efficacy, but also help support skin’s immune health with the natural minerals found in the clay.

    So how do you use it, exactly?

    It’s not what you might expect: It’s not actually clay that is the core ingredient, but the minerals found in clay which play a vital role in the body and in the skin. And because the skin is naturally incredibly difficult to penetrate as an immunological defense mechanism, we have to make sure what we put on it is small enough to effectively penetrate. The clay minerals allow us to do that. So what we’ve done is created our very unique delivery system called Vital Oligo Science, which consists only of minerals extracted from French green clay converted into nano-particles, then encapsulated in purified water and physically emulsified with the active ingredients to penetrate into the skin and give the desired results. The minerals also contain negative ions which help to reduce ionic instability in the skin that can accelerate skin aging. So though clay in some cases can be drying, which is not necessarily a bad thing, the products themselves use the mineral benefits of the clay to provide the results our clients seek.

    Immunocologie 2
    Image: Immunocologie

    What about the ever-popular snail mucus?

    Snail mucin is a fascinating ingredient mainly because it contains an enzyme that helps skin cells turnover and regenerate new skin in a way that when applied, will reduce fine lines and wrinkles and even help to heal scars. Snails, because of the environments they exist in and the textures, have incredibly resilient skin, so much so that if you put a snail on the blade of a sharp knife, it wouldn’t cut itself because its skin cells regenerate so quickly. We’ve been able to bio-engineer this and include these benefits in one of our hero products.

    Another great ingredient is our African desert date seed oil which we sustainably and equitably source from Burkina Faso in west Africa. It’s rich in vitamins A and C as well as essential fibers and also works incredibly as an anti-inflammatory.

    Why is Immunocologie 99 percent natural? What’s stopping the other 1 percent?

    We’re 99 percent natural because we use two food grade preservatives throughout the line, benzyl alcohol, which we source from beets and sodium benzoate. It’s important that we’re fully transparent about what’s in the product and we’re proud to be able to share that kind of information with our clients because it creates trust and that’s how we believe business should be conducted. For us, the term natural has become diluted though and it’s creating more convolution around an already convoluted industry. There are brands in the market that call themselves natural because they use a few essential oils, but then pair them with chemical synthetics which can reduce the benefits of those oils.

    The goal of Immunocologie is healthy skin over anti-aging. Why did you decide to formulate the products in such a way?

    The truth is, we’re all going to age, no matter what and preventing aging is not synonymous with being healthy. When you’re not healthy, you don’t look or feel at your best and many times it’s when we’re not taking care of ourselves properly that can contribute to accelerated aging. Though when we take care of ourselves, when we eat well, exercise, invest in our well-being, we look and feel at our best. So we as a brand don’t believe in formulating skincare products that focus on the inevitable, but instead focus on understanding the root cause of what creates good skin, its health, and finding the right ingredients that contribute to its long-term vitality and ultimately its appearance.

    More: How Long Does it REALLY Take for Skincare Products to Work?

    Originally posted on StyleCaster.com


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    Here are few things more satisfying than removing your makeup at the end of the day—it’s basically the skin-care equivalent of peeling off your stomach-squeezing tights and shedding your bra as soon as you get home from work. But if you’re following a green beauty routine, your natural, gentle makeup remover may be more of a makeup smudger-arounder, leaving you with pore-clogging residue that your cleansers can’t wash off.

    More: The Best DIY Hair Masks for Dry Hair

    But that doesn’t mean you need to ditch your routine and pick up a remover with fifty-three unpronounceable ingredients—you just need to find the right one. And that’s where we come in. We rounded up the seven best natural makeup remover wipes, pads, and solutions that actually dissolve every last speck of makeup all without cooking your face in a stew of chemicals. Keep reading to see our favorites, then try them out for yourself.

    More: The Best Moisturizers for Dry, Sensitive Skin

    1. Vapour Organic Beauty Clarity Makeup Remover

     Vapour Organic Beauty Clarity Makeup Remover
    Image: Vapour Organic Beauty

    Vapour Organic Beauty Clarity Makeup Remover (Vapour Organic Beauty, $32)

    2. Burt’s Bees Eye Makeup Remover Pads

    Burt’s Bees Eye Makeup Remover Pads
    Image: Burt’s Bees

    Burt’s Bees Eye Makeup Remover Pads (Burt’s Bees, $6)

    3. Derma-E Makeup Remover

    Derma-E Makeup Remover
    Image: Derma-E

    Derma-E Makeup Remover (Derma-E, $13)

    4. Honest Beauty Refreshingly Clean Makeup Remover Wipes

    Honest Beauty Refreshingly Clean Makeup Remover Wipes
    Image: Honest Beauty

    Honest Beauty Refreshingly Clean Makeup Remover Wipes (Honest Beauty, $10)

    5. Dr. Alkaitis Organic Mascara & Eye Makeup Remover

    Dr. Alkaitis Organic Mascara & Eye Makeup Remover
    Image: Dr. Alkaitis

    Dr. Alkaitis Organic Mascara & Eye Makeup Remover (Dr. Alkaitis, $45)

    6. RMS Beauty The Ultimate Makeup Remover Wipes

    RMS Beauty The Ultimate Makeup Remover Wipes
    Image: RMS Beauty

    RMS Beauty The Ultimate Makeup Remover Wipes (RMS Beauty, $16)

    7. Jason Quick Clean Makeup Remover Pads

    Jason Quick Clean Makeup Remover Pads
    Image: Amazon

    Jason Quick Clean Makeup Remover Pads, $5; at Amazon

    Originally posted on StyleCaster.com


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    Christmas is magical for approximately 15-billion reasons (a number of which center around presents and all-you-can-eat cookies and pie), but aside from the gluttony, one of our favorite reasons is the never-ending holiday spirit that permeates literally every aspect of life—including your style. During the month of December, you can pretty much get away with any style choice, provided it’s Christmas-themed. Reindeer sweater? Sure. Red-and-green ornament earrings? Why not. Glitter-flecked lipstick and a Christmas-tree dress? Hey, if it floats your boat.

    But if you’re not into dressing up like an ornament, you can still show your undying love for Christmas by trying your hand (ha) at some incredibly purposeful holiday nail art. Nope, these designs aren’t for the minimalists or the Scrooges—they’re for the people who start counting down to Christmas in July and would gladly listen to Christmas songs year-round, sanity permitting. So scroll down to see our favorite designs, and get inspired to try your own nail art this Christmas.

    A very geometric Christmas

    IG Christmas nails 1

    IG Christmas nails 1

    Ombre diamonds

    IG Christmas nails 2

    IG Christmas nails 2

    Ornaments

    IG Christmas nails 3

    IG Christmas nails 3

    The Grinch

    IG Christmas nails 4

    IG Christmas nails 4

    Blue Christmas

    IG Christmas nails 5

    IG Christmas nails 5

    Reindeer nails

    IG Christmas nails 6

    IG Christmas nails 6

    Joyful

    IG Christmas nails 7

    IG Christmas nails 7

    Crystal accents

    IG Christmas nails 8

    IG Christmas nails 8

    Holiday sweater

    IG Christmas nails 9

    IG Christmas nails 9

    Rudolph

    IG Christmas nails 10

    IG Christmas nails 10

    Want more Christmas nail art designs? Check out our tutorial!

    Christmas nails tutorial

    Christmas nails tutorial


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    Save for actual frostbite, there’s nothing worse than dry skin in the winter. Your makeup flakes off, your face feels tight—and not in the good way—and your skin gets red and irritated at even the thought of going outside. While we can’t exactly stop the dry heat from invading your apartment (though, we do recommend investing in a good humidifier—trust), we can bring you a formidable remedy: a face mask.

    More: How to get rid of dry-skin patches overnight

    Whether you’re looking to see results in the matter of 20 minutes, or you’ve totally exhausted you search for a majorly hydrating overnight formula, we found the best face masks for dry skin. Ahead, find nine products packed with heavy-duty moisturizers like glycerin, beeswax, vitamin E, and niacinamide that’ll replenish skin’s lost moisture so you don’t end up looking like a flaky, red mess for the next three months.

    1. Clinique Moisture Surge Overnight Mask

    Clinique Moisture Surge Overnight Mask
    Image: Sephora

    Clinique Moisture Surge Overnight Mask (Sephora, $34.50)

    2. nügg Beauty Hydrating Face Mask 5-pack

    nügg Beauty Hydrating Face Mask 5-pack
    Image: nügg

    nügg Beauty Hydrating Face Mask 5-pack (Nugg, $3.29)

    3. boscia Tsubaki Deep Hydration Sleeping Mask

    boscia Tsubaki Deep Hydration Sleeping Mask
    Image: Sephora

    boscia Tsubaki Deep Hydration Sleeping Mask (Sephora, $34)

    More: 11 causes of dry skin that prove you're your own worst enemy

    4. Laneige Water Sleeping Mask

    Laneige Water Sleeping Mask
    Image: Target

    Laneige Water Sleeping Mask (Target, $24)

    5. Embryolisse Hydrating Cream Mask

    Embryolisse Hydrating Cream Mask
    Image: Dermstore

    Embryolisse Hydrating Cream Mask (Dermstore, $35)

    6. AmorePacific Moisture Bound Sleeping Recovery Mask

    AmorePacific Moisture Bound Sleeping Recovery Mask
    Image: Sephora

    AmorePacific Moisture Bound Sleeping Recovery Mask (Sephora, $60)

    7. Leaders Moisturizing Recovery Mask

    Leaders Moisturizing Recovery Mask
    Image: Ulta

    Leaders Moisturizing Recovery Mask (Ulta, $7)

    8. GLAMGLOW THIRSTYMUD Hydrating Treatment

    GLAMGLOW THIRSTYMUD Hydrating Treatment
    Image: Sephora

    GLAMGLOW THIRSTYMUD Hydrating Treatment (Sephora, $69)

    More: The 7 best moisturizers for dry, winter skin

    9. First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Instant Oatmeal Mask

    First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Instant Oatmeal Mask
    Image: Ulta

    First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Instant Oatmeal Mask (Ulta, $24)


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    It’s officially winter for the majority of the country, which means your previously glowy, hydrated, kissed-by-a-dew-drop skin has probably devolved into a flaky, angry mess. And as anyone with dry skin knows, there are few things more frustrating than meticulously blending layers of concealer and foundation over your skin, only to accidentally dredge up a cluster of flakes around your nose (and mouth, and eyes, and eyebrows…).

    More: The Best Moisturizers for Dry, Sensitive Skin

    But thankfully, you’re not alone—it happens to even the fanciest of fancy and famous people at the most inconvenient times (think: before a photoshoot, or minutes before walking the red carpet). So we asked the pros, the people whose job it is to make sure skin flakes stay hidden, how they deal with dry-skin hiccups. And weirdly, the fix is probably sitting on your desk right now.

    “Scotch tape is the best for dealing with dry skin,” says makeup artist Robin Black. “It sounds odd, but you can use Scotch tape to remove skin flakes by tapping it gently over dry patches without messing up your makeup.” We’ve tried it, and it really does work. Just rip off a few inches of tape, stick the ends together to form a loop, slip it over your finger, and dab, dab, dab the flakes around your nose and eyes, like a lint brush. And if that doesn’t get rid of all of your flakes—or if you have a tape allergy—grab a clean spoolie brush and lightly swipe at the flakes with the tip of the brush until they lift away from your skin.

    If your skin is especially flaky, and you don’t want to carry a roll of Scotch tape around with you to a holiday party, Black swears by Daisy Japan Sticky Cotton Pieces, which can easily fit in your clutch, pocket, or bra (hey, you gotta do what you gotta do). “They look like Q-tips, but on one side of the tip is a skin-safe adhesive that’s just sticky enough to lift off skin flakes—or glitter and smoky eyeshadow bits—without ruining your foundation.”

    More: How to Get Rid of Dry-Skin Patches Overnight

    Of course, the best way to deal with flakes is to prevent them from ever happening by massaging a moisturizer with hyaluronic acid and ceramides (two of the best hydrators) into your skin 15 minutes before applying your makeup. But if flakes do strike, and it’s too late to moisturize, then grab some Scotch tape and a spoolie brush, and give a silent shout out to Robin Black.

    Originally posted on StyleCaster.com


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    If you have dry skin, you know the frustrating feeling of waking up with tight, raw skin, or watching your face flake off by noon. And if you don’t normally have dry skin, and winter is just kicking your butt this season, then welcome to the club—we’re sorry to see you here.

    More: The 9 best face masks for dry, winter skin

    The good thing is, dry skin doesn’t have to be this awful, all-consuming thing in your beauty routine, as long as you use the right products. Which means throwing out that crappy body-and-face moisturizer you’ve had in your drawer for eight years and picking up a formula that really, truly works, like one of these seven under-$15 moisturizers. Each one of them is filled with super-hydrating ingredients, like glycerin, hyaluronic acid, and nut oils, which are guaranteed to stave off itchiness and dry-skin flakes.

    More: The 7 best moisturizers for dry, winter skin

    Scroll down to see our favorites, and say goodbye to your Crypt-Keeper face.

    Garnier SkinActive Moisture Rescue Hydrating Daily Lotion SPF 15

    Garnier SkinActive Moisture Rescue Hydrating Daily Lotion SPF 15
    Image: Garnier

    Garnier SkinActive Moisture Rescue Hydrating Daily Lotion SPF 15 (Garnier, $13)

    Simple Replenishing Rich Moisturizer

    Simple Replenishing Rich Moisturizer
    Image: Simple

    Simple Replenishing Rich Moisturizer (Simple, $9)

    Olay Complete All Day Moisturizer SPF 15 for Sensitive Skin

    Olay Complete All Day Moisturizer SPF 15 for Sensitive Skin
    Image: Ulta

    Olay Complete All Day Moisturizer SPF 15 for Sensitive Skin (Ulta, $9)

    Yes to Carrots Daily Facial Moisturizer SPF 15

    Yes to Carrots Daily Facial Moisturizer SPF 15
    Image: Amazon

    Yes to Carrots Daily Facial Moisturizer SPF 15 (Amazon, $14)

    CeraVe Facial Moisturizing Lotion AM SPF 30

    CeraVe Facial Moisturizing Lotion AM SPF 30
    Image: Ulta

    CeraVe Facial Moisturizing Lotion AM SPF 30 (Ulta, $15)

    Lumene Bright Now BB Cream SPF 20

    Lumene Bright Now BB Cream SPF 20
    Image: Amazon

    Lumene Bright Now BB Cream SPF 20 (Amazon, $9)

    Cetaphil DailyAdvance Ultra Hydrating Lotion

    Cetaphil DailyAdvance Ultra Hydrating Lotion
    Image: Ulta

    Cetaphil DailyAdvance Ultra Hydrating Lotion, $11; at Ulta


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    It seems like every updo tutorial or inspo photo you see on the internet is done by someone with Rapunzel-length hair and 20 years of experience. Sure, we’d also love to have an extra hour each day to spend in front of the mirror practicing the ultimate updo, but this is real life, and thanks to your kids, your job, your ultimate need for sleep…that just ain’t gonna happen.

    More: 64 short hairstyles to inspire your next chop

    But never fear, because rather than leave you and your short hair to your own devices, we rounded up our favorite short-hair updos that anyone can do, so you don’t need to result to your faithful ol’ blow out, curled thing that you’ve worn for approximately ten holidays. Scroll down to see our favorites, and then try them out on yourself!

    Soft and Messy Updo

    Face-framing pieces keep this boho-inspired updo looking soft and pretty.

    Soft and Messy Updo

    Soft and Messy Updo

    French-Braided Buns

    A zig-zagged part, smoothing gel, and two French braids turn short, natural hair into a sleek, long-looking updo.

    French-Braided Buns

    French-Braided Buns

    Triple-Knotted Updo

    If you can twist and pin a bun, you can easily do this quick little updo.

    Triple-Knotted Updo

    Triple-Knotted Updo

    Super-Sleek Bun

    We’re all about rockin’ your natural hair, but if you’re looking for a smoother updo, try this smooth, deep-parted bun.

    Super-Sleek Bun

    Super-Sleek Bun

    Voluminous Curls

    A bunch of curls and a few strategically placed bobby-pins make this fancy-looking updo surprisingly easy.

    Voluminous Curls

    Voluminous Curls


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    If you’re like us, New Year’s Eve is both the most-exciting beauty holiday, and the most annoyingly stressful. It’s literally the one time a year when you’re practically expected to go crazy with glitter, bold makeup, and insanely intricate hairstyles and accessories, yet as soon as December 31 hits, you’re struck with zero hair ideas (and, let’s be honest, energy) to try anything new. So you do the same curling-ironed curls you’ve done a billion times before. Yaaaaay.

    More: The Best Moisturizers for Dry, Sensitive Skin

    But not this year. No, this year, you’re going to put on your party pants and and actually try something fun and insanely gorgeous with your hair to ring in the new year. And to help you out, we turned to our favorite celebrities, like Selena Gomez, Zendaya, and Blake Lively, for their sleekest blowouts, springiest curls, and princess-level updos to get you inspired. Keep reading to see every party look, and then test them out on yourself today. (A practice run never hurt anyone, right?)

    More: 101 Holiday Party Makeup Ideas to Try Right Now

    Rolled-and-Pinned Chignon

    Rolled-and-Pinned Chignon
    Image: Getty Images

    Sleek and Center-Parted

    Sleek and Center-Parted
    Image: Getty Images

    Soft and Smooth Topknot

    Soft and Smooth Topknot
    Image: Getty Images

    Curled Bob

    Curled Bob
    Image: Getty Images

    Textured Waves

    Textured Waves
    Image: Getty Images

    Soft and Wispy French Twist

    Soft and Wispy French Twist
    Image: Getty Images

    Slicked-Back Wet Look

    Slicked-Back Wet Look
    Image: Getty Images

    Voluminous, Picked-Out Curls

    Voluminous, Picked-Out Curls
    Image: Getty Images

    Five-Pinned Side Part

    Five-Pinned Side Part
    Image: Getty Images

    Mini-Braided and Woven Chignon

    Mini-Braided and Woven Chignon
    Image: Getty Images

    Sleek, Center-Parted Ponytail

    Sleek, Center-Parted Ponytail
    Image: Getty Images

    Originally posted on StyleCaster.com


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    One of the dopest fashion shows of 2016 wasn’t on any fashion calendar. In fact, it was built around the idea that wardrobes needn’t be divided by season at all. Wool for fall and cotton for summer? Yawn. Instead, designers Claude Morais and Brian Wolk, the duo behind fashion label Wolk Morais, are making clothes for the seasonless dresser—one who reaches for velvet, lamé, and silk, rendered in vivid colors and moody shades alike, regardless of the temperature outside. Fans like Jessica Chastain, Heidi Klum, and Madonna are already on board. And, like ditching the no-white-after-Labor-Day rule, joining the ranks may make you a better dresser.

    The philosophy: instead of limiting yourself to pastels in spring, brights in summer, and vampy shades in winter, wear any palette you want, no matter the season. Ditto for fabrics. Upstart labels like Wolk Morais and New York City-based Protagonist have embraced the concept from the start, stacking a mix of textures, finishes, and palettes in fabric weights that can be worn year round, with the aim of offering clothing that won’t look tired after a few months.

    Morais thinks of seasonless dressing like this: “It could be long, it could be short; it could be black, it could be white; it could be evening, it could be day. You could wear a beanie in spring or in the fall.”

    Wolk continues, “That’s why we decided on soft velvet or things you could wear all year long—wonderful twills with metallics or lamé.”

    For the label’s latest offering, dubbed Collection 4 (sequential numbers replace traditional spring/summer, fall/winter classifications) and shown in Los Angeles in November, looks that paired floor-length, lamé gowns with logo-emblazoned beanies mixed bits of L.A.’s Fairfax district street style with 1930s glam; The collection was as laid back as it is lavish. What’s more, the looks would feel just as at home at a June wedding as they would a holiday party.

    More: See Now, Buy Now: The Best Pieces to Shop Straight Off the Fashion-Week Runways

    The designers’ endgame is about mixing it up and saying goodbye to sartorial restraints. “The difference is when you’re locked into spring and fall, your mindset is so specific in terms of the weather,” says Wolk. But pulling together pieces from across your wardrobe, regardless of whether they were designed for now or later, makes for more creative looks. It also lends itself to building the kind of wardrobe that Marie Kondo would be proud of—one that gets worn to threads. Of the label’s clients, Wolk says, “They have their favorite things they like to wear and they wear them. It doesn’t matter what season it is, and that’s the freedom of it.”

    With that in mind, who among us couldn’t use a little wardrobe liberation? Instead of shoving summer clothes to the back of the closet or storing them under the bed until May, why not look at your entire wardrobe with eyes that don’t see season? Black velvet, white silk, and jacquard chiffon—all fabrics included in Wolk Morais Collection 4—may be worn on their own in warmer weather, and suddenly find new purpose when paired with wool tights and a winter coat as the temperature drops. Come summer, dresses in oxblood and sienna might be a refreshing change of pace from all that chambray and white linen. Going seasonless may not only elevate the way you dress, but change the way you look at clothes in collections to come. Florals for spring? Groundbreaking.

    More: 11 Trends We Saw EVERYWHERE In 2016

    Originally posted on StyleCaster.com


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    Truth time: You’re a picker, I’m a picker, we’re all pickers. And as much as we shame you for messing with your zits, bumps, and blackheads (you really shouldn’t do it—picking destroys your skin and can lead to scarring and infections, so keep your hands off your face), it’s also an inevitable part of life that is weirdly satisfying…until the self-loathing kicks in, and you hate yourself for ruining your skin. Which is probably why the internet is straight-up obsessed with pimple-popping and black-head squeezing videos, to the point where some of them have racked up more than 20 million views, like this gem:

    More: Amazing Before-and-After Acne Photos from Vegan Diet

    Blackhead and whitehead extraction video 1

    Blackhead and whitehead extraction video 1

    Yeah, more truth time: I literally had to cover my eyes when researching these videos, because even its preview set off my gag reflex (I, for one, am not a subscriber to these channels). Clearly, though, there’s a market for videos like this, seeing as the internet freaked out this week over a blackhead-removal video posted to Facebook, with more than 22-million people having watched it so far.

    But because you’ve probably already seen it, been entranced by it, and shared it with all of your friends, we’ve decided to do the gross dirty work of rounding up a new set of blackhead-squeezing videos to appease your picking needs, which have a combined view count of 60 million—so you know they’re good. Scroll down to see the darlings of the internet, and make sure you’re not anywhere near food when you click play. Happy Friday!

    Blackhead and whitehead extraction video 2

    Blackhead and whitehead extraction video 2

    Blackhead and whitehead extraction video 3

    Blackhead and whitehead extraction video 3

    More: The Best Korean Pore Strips to Totally Annihilate Gunked-Up Pores

    Originally posted on StyleCaster.com


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    If you’ve ever read anything I’ve written, you’ll know I have insanely sensitive and dry skin. Like, sometimes, it just flakes off my face in the middle of the day for no reason, or my eyelid will start swelling up in response to some nonexistent threat (I AM BEAUTIFUL). So, obviously, retinols and I have never been on good terms, seeing as their main function seems to be to irritate and destroy your skin.

    More: The Best Moisturizers for Ridiculously Dry Skin

    Of course, retinols are not out to get you, despite the flakes you’ve probably endured in the past. In reality, they’re actually just trying to stave off Mother Nature for a few more years by speeding up your cell turnover to give you newer, fresher, younger-looking skin. The downside to this, of course, is that they’re not exactly gentle in the process, meaning anyone with dry and-slash-or sensitive skin (*raises hand*) has to be especially careful with the strength of the retinol they use and how they use it.

    A good rule of thumb, says dermatologist Mona Gohara, MD and assistant professor of dermatology at Yale School of Medicine, is to use a pea-size amount of your new retinol to clean, dry skin once a week for one week, then twice a week for two weeks, three times a week for three weeks, and then, only if you’ve had zero irritation thus far, apply it every other night indefinitely. If this idea still freaks you the hell out, or if you’ve tried this method and your skin cracked and flew away, then try applying your retinol over your normal nighttime moisturizer (after waiting 20 minutes for it to sink in) to partially dilute the formula.

    Also, don’t get discouraged if your skin flakes for a few weeks after you add retinols into your routine. “Generally, it can take up to four weeks before your skin starts adapting to the retinol and building its tolerance,” says dermatologist Joshua Zeichner, MD, director of cosmetic and clinical research at the department of dermatology at Mount Sinai Medical Center. So yes, you need to fully commit to your retinol for at least a month while your skin adapts—so no going rogue or getting lazy on your skin.

    And lest you go pick up some random drugstore retinol and burn your skin off, we asked Gohara and Zeichner to tell us their absolute favorite retinols for dry, sensitive skin. Each of these seven products are derm- and beauty editor-approved to be safe for your skin (provided you use them correctly—there’s only so much we can do, here), and all of them will keep annoying little wrinkles at bay for, well, as long as you use them.

    More: 5 Big Retinol Myths You Need to Stop Believing

    1. SkinMedica Retinol Complex 0.25

    SkinMedica Retinol Complex 0.25
    Image: SkinMedica

    SkinMedica Retinol Complex 0.25 (SkinMedica, $62) 

    2. La Roche-Posay Redermic R

    La Roche-Posay Redermic R
    Image: La Roche-Posay

    La Roche-Posay Redermic R ( a Roche-Posay, $57)

    3. SkinCeuticals Retinol 0.5

    SkinCeuticals Retinol 0.5
    Image: SkinCeuticals

    SkinCeuticals Retinol 0.5 (SkinCeuticals, $60)

    4. RoC Retinol Correxion Sensitive Night Cream

    RoC Retinol Correxion Sensitive Night Cream
    Image: Target

    RoC Retinol Correxion Sensitive Night Cream (Target, $20)

    5. Neutrogena Rapid Wrinkle Repair Night Moisturizer

    Neutrogena Rapid Wrinkle Repair Night Moisturizer
    Image: Neutrogena

    Neutrogena Rapid Wrinkle Repair Night Moisturizer (Neutrogena, $21)

    6. Paula’s Choice Resist Intensive Repair Cream

    Paula’s Choice Resist Intensive Repair Cream
    Image: Paula’s Choice

    Paula’s Choice Resist Intensive Repair Cream (Paula’s Choice, $33)

    7. Avene PhysioLift Night Smoothing Night Balm

    Avene PhysioLift Night Smoothing Night Balm
    Image: Avene

    Avene PhysioLift Night Smoothing Night Balm (Avene, $48)

    Originally posted on StyleCaster.com


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    Sephora is a dangerous, magical place. No matter what your intentions are when you first go in (“I just need dry shampoo!”), you inevitably will leave with your rent’s worth of beauty products in a bag. But, hey, at least you got more member rewards points, right? Egh.

    More: 7 Weird and Wonderful Korean Beauty Products from Too Cool For School

    The thing is, we know you’re not going to stop going to Sephora anytime soon. And we also know that it’ll never stop being an addictive buffet of beauty products, so we figured we’d save you the hassle of figuring out what to buy (or not to buy, according to the voice of reason in your head that you haven’t listened to since you bought a bandana shirt in 2003) by rounding up the coolest and newest products coming to Sephora in November.

    And, lucky for you, everything on this list under $30, so you won’t need to guiltily text your friends that you just spent waaaay too much at Sephora for the hundredth time this year. Click through to see our favorite liquid lip stains, mini fragrances, and shimmery eyeshadow palettes. Happy shopping!

    More: Now You Can Shop Instagram, So Say Goodbye to All of Your Money

    Bite Beauty Amuse Bouche Lipstick Duo

    Bite Beauty Amuse Bouche Lipstick Duo
    Image: Sephora

    We were going to make a joke about these lipsticks being bite-sized, but we figured we'd spare you. Aside from the word play, the real draw of these four lipsticks is their dual-end capabilities: On one side is a rich, pigmented base color, and on the other side is a sheer, iridescent "top coat" for a perfectly ombréd finish. (Sephora, $14)

    Atelier Cologne Nécessaire

    Atelier Cologne Nécessaire
    Image: Sephora

    Sample the best of Atalier Cologne with eight beautifully elegant perfumes in scents ranging from warm vanilla to crisp mandarin and ginger. (Sephora, $25)

    Kat Von D Studded Kiss Lipstick

    Kat Von D Studded Kiss Lipstick
    Image: Sephora

    This bright, cinnamon-toned lipstick flatters (almost) all skin tones, and its angled tip renders your lip liner virtually useless.  (Sephora, $21)

    Sephora Collection The Romantic Eyeshadow Palette

    Sephora Collection The Romantic Eyeshadow Palette
    Image: Sephora

    Eyeshadow palettes are great in theory...until you buy one and realize only two of the shades look acceptable on human beings. This eight-shade palette includes rich, matte blacks, shimmery tans, and glitter-infused greys to help you create the ultimate cold-weather look, no matter your style. (Sephora, $12)

    Marc Jacobs Beauty Le Marc Lip Crème Lipstick

    Marc Jacobs Beauty Le Marc Lip Crème Lipstick
    Image: Sephora

    Creamy, super pigmented, and surprisingly long-lasting. What more could you want from a classic red lipstick? (Sephora, $30)

    Formula X Huda Kattan Nail Polish

    Formula X Huda Kattan Nail Polish
    Image: Sephora

    We already had a crush on Formula X for its no-chip formulas (seriously, these polishes will last a full week without flaking), but add three muted, universally flattering shades and a Huda Kattan endorsement, and we're officially in love. (Sephora, $13 each)

    Sephora Collection Mini Cream Lip Stain Set

    Sephora Collection Mini Cream Lip Stain Set
    Image: Sephora

    Move over, Kylie Lip Kits. This adorably tiny kit features the four best-selling shades from Sephora's lip stain collection, and, unlike most liquid lipsticks you've probably tried, not one of these babies will dry out your lips. (Sephora, $12)

    Ole Henriksen All Four Love 3 Little Wonders + Cleanse

    Ole Henriksen All Four Love 3 Little Wonders + Cleanse
    Image: Sephora

    Let us all just take a moment to "aww" at the teeny tiny sizes of these products. OK, resume. This little skin-care kit—just in time for holiday travel—includes Ole's cult-favorite Truth Serum Vitamin C Collagen Booster (an A.M. anti-aging serum), the Sheer Tranformation night cream (for dry, discolored skin), the Invigorating Night Treatment (a fine-line-smoothing gel), and the African Red Tea Foaming Cleanser, all for $25. Yup. (Sephora, $25)

    Originally posted on StyleCaster.com


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    Yeah, yeah, we know: Retinols are confusing. They not only come in a billion different formulas and variations, each one promising to work lightning fast (which, hot tip, almost always translates to skin irritation), but each one also varies in price, consistency, and branding, all of which turns your maybe-I’ll-buy-a-retinol trip down the skin-care aisle into a mind-melting whirlwind.

    So to help your brain out, we picked the four most-popular retinols that you’ve seen in magazines, on billboards, and in pop-up ads for years—the retinols that have cult-like followings, insanely high reviews, and celebrity backers, and we tested them out for ourselves to find you the very best drugstore retinol, once and for all.

    More: 5 Big Retinol Myths You Need to Stop Believing

    Our tester, who has a “normal” complexion with zero sensitivity issues (lucky her), tested the retinols for two weeks per brand and applied them every third night to dry, clean skin, without using any other moisturizers or products (we definitely wouldn’t recommend this method to anyone who has ever had dry or sensitive skin, though; instead, massage in a hydrating moisturizer 20 minutes after you apply your retinol to stave off irritation and flakes).

    Though retinols generally take a minimum of four months to produce results, we didn’t have two years to test this smack down—plus, in the end, all retinols have the same effect on your skin, regardless of their concentration—so we instead based our rankings on the formula’s texture, packaging, application, and its feeling on your skin. (If you hate any of those factors, you definitely won’t stick with a retinol routine every few days for a year.)

    Keep reading to find out our favorite winner, and then get your butt to the drugstore ASAP. Your skin (in 20 years) will thank you for it.

    L’Oreal Paris Revitalift Anti-Wrinkle Firming Night Cream
    Image: L’Oreal Paris

    L’Oreal Paris Revitalift Anti-Wrinkle Firming Night Cream (L’Oreal Paris, $17.99)

    Dear L’Oreal, why did you put your retinol in a jar?! We didn’t want to rule this product out from the get-go, but any skin-care product with active ingredients like retinol should be in an airtight pump, or, at the very least, a squeeze tube with a cap, or the retinol will eventually become ineffective after being exposed to air. Also, jars are often unhygienic and can become breeding ground for bacteria, even if you wash your hands before dipping in a finger.

    But, jar aside, our tester was even more shocked to find that her steel-like skin started stinging and peeling after the third time she applied the retinol—a first for her. “It definitely could have been user error,” she admits, “the retinol is in a jar, so you kind of just dip your fingers in to apply it, which results in more than a pea-size amount on your face.” Still, she says, the cream “didn’t really sink into my skin as well as the others—it just kind of sat on top.”

    Olay Regenerist Intensive Repair Treatment
    Image: Ulta

    Olay Regenerist Intensive Repair Treatment (Ulta, $28.99)

    Sensitive-skinned folks beware: This retinol means business (in case you couldn’t tell by its name). Olay claims that the formula will reduce the appearance of age spots, fine lines, and wrinkles in just eight weeks, which sounds totally amazing, but don’t expect miracles since retinols really do need at least four months to make an impact.

    But just because it packs a punch doesn’t make this retinol is acid in a tube—nope, this sucker is formulated with glycerin and silicone, making it hydrating enough for those of you with dry-to-normal skin. So much so that our tester, whose skin was already a bit irritated from her L’Oreal testing, applied this retinol at night and woke up to softer skin. The only downside? “The formula’s consistency is pretty thin, so it oozed out of the tube pretty quickly,” says our tester. “It’s almost impossible to squeeze just a pea-size amount, so I had to be careful not to apply too much. Still, my skin felt softer and plumper at the end of the two weeks.”

    RoC Retinol Correxion Deep Wrinkle Night Cream
    Image: Target

    RoC Retinol Correxion Deep Wrinkle Night Cream, $19.99

    When you think wrinkles, you think RoC (if that’s not the brand’s slogan, it should be). This deep-wrinkle night cream comes in a sturdy squeeze tube that’s stiff enough that the retinol won’t simply ooze out at the touch of the tube. Plus, the formula is more cream-y than serum-y so it felt more substantial to our tester. “Sometimes, retinols feel so thin and watery that I accidentally put on a few layers to make sure my skin is really covered, which is always a bad thing to do,” says our tester. “But this one felt creamy and spreadable, so I didn’t worry about over-applying it or using too much.”

    And those without patience will be happy to know that this retinol works relatively quickly. “My under-eye area actually looked a bit smoother after only two weeks of using RoC, which was seriously impressive,” she says. “But because the formula is pretty powerful and meant for deeper wrinkles, I could definitely see it being too irritating for a wide range of skin types.”

    Neutrogena Rapid Wrinkle Repair Night Moisturizer
    Image: Neutrogena

    Neutrogena Rapid Wrinkle Repair Night Moisturizer, $20.99

    Finally—a retinol in a pump! Hallelujah! If we could award winners based on packaging alone, Neutrogena would have won. But the real test was in its formula, which contains both glycerin and hyaluronic acid—two skin-plumping hydrators—and a hefty dose of retinol. Though Neutrogena says you’ll notice a difference in just one week, we’re throwing major skepticism at that claim, seeing as your skin cell turnover rate (responsible for creating new, wrinkle-free skin) is only every 28 days.

    More: The best retinols for dry, sensitive skin

    Still, our tester found that the retinol, which absorbed quickly into her skin, “made my skin feel way softer and look a bit more even after just two uses, which was an awesome surprise.” Overall, though, she felt that this retinol was the most do-able for daily use: “I’m in my late 20s and don’t need nor want a heavy duty, deep-wrinkle retinol,” she says. “This formula was mess-free and really lightweight, and it felt like it could be a long-term maintenance product for me, rather than a quick fix, which I liked.”

    WINNER: NEUTROGENA RAPID WRINKLE REPAIR NIGHT MOISTURIZER

    Originally posted on StyleCaster.com


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  • 12/29/16--12:33: How to do no-makeup makeup
  • No-makeup makeup is an elusive, confusing thing, because 99-percent of the time, it requires way more time and effort than your usual night-out look. Why? Because you’re trying to fool people into thinking your skin is naturally perfect and glowing and magical, and that level of trickery takes time and precision.

    More: 9 DIY Skin-Care Ingredients That are Bad for Your Skin

    But just because no-makeup makeup isn’t for the lazy, it also shouldn’t require three years of cosmetology school to master. Luckily, once you get the hang of it (i.e. applying multiple sheer layers of makeup until you eventually build to a natural-looking finish), you’ll realize it’s actually quite easy and painless. So to get you started, we broke down the five most-important tricks to pulling off the perfect no-makeup makeup look.

    Learn the power of concealer

    No, you don’t have to have perfect, blemish-free skin to pull off the no-makeup look—although it seriously helps. “With a great skin regimen that keeps your skin looking flawless, you’ll barely need any makeup anyway,” says makeup artist and skin care consultant Karuna Chani. Uh, dreams. But if you’re not genetically blessed, stock up on lightweight, hydrating concealers, like Philosophy Hope for Everywhere for dry skin, or Laura Mercier Secret Concealer for medium-to-oily skin, and apply them in a triangle beneath your eyes, around the edges and center of your nose, across your chin, and on any other red spots or patches. The goal here is to minimize as much redness and discoloration as possible before even adding your tinted moisturizer.

    Embrace tinted moisturizer

    Sorry, but no matter how awesome your foundation is, it’s never, ever going to give you a no-makeup makeup look, because it’s simply too heavy. “Tinted moisturizers are light, airy, and allow your skin to show through it, so there’s no way you’ll get the ‘cakey’ makeup look,” says Chani. If you have dry skin, pick a tinted moisturizer loaded with hydrating ingredients (like Bare Minerals Complexion Rescue Tinted Hydrating Gel Cream), or if your skin gets shiny by noon, look for a semi-matte formula, like Nars Velvet Matte Skin Tint.

    Hide blemishes the correct way

    Caking 23 layers of concealer on one blemish is immediately going to destroy your no-makeup makeup look. Instead, pick one full-coverage, yet hydrating, concealer that can cover zits with just a few taps, like Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer. After applying your tinted moisturizer, dab the concealer lightly over the head of your zit, wait five minutes, then gently tap, tap, tap to blend it out.

    Ditch any and all powders

    The goal here is to have dewy, glowing skin, like you just got 12 hours of sleep in a misty cloud, and powders destroy that entire goal. So swap your powder blush for a cream or gel formula, like Perfekt Cheek Perfection Gel or NYX Cream Blush, and blend it along the apples of your cheeks. But if you’re terrified that your oily skin will turn into a grease slick after breakfast with all of these creamy products, start your makeup look off with a mattifying primer, like the cult-favorite Becca Ever-Matte Poreless Priming Perfector, which will keep the shine at bay without ruining the dew.

    Keep the rest of your makeup light

    You’ll still want a little somethin’ somethin’ on your face so you don’t look like you just rolled out of bed (this is a makeup look, after all), but don’t go overboard: Brush your brows—“the best shape, here, is a natural shape,” says Chani—and fill them in lightly with a brow crayon, like Maybelline Brow Drama Pomade Crayon, one shade lighter than your natural eyebrow color. Skip eyeliner altogether, or go for a natural look, lining just your top lash line with a copper eyeliner (we like CoverGirl Flamed Out Shadow Pencil in Melted Caramel), then curl your top lashes and swipe on a brown-black mascara. On your lips: whatever the hell you want. We’re partial to a red lipstick (it gives your skin a “this old thing” feel), but a tinted lip balm works just as well.

    Now go forth into this bright, busy world with a meticulously applied makeup look that ideally tricks everyone into thinking you put nothing on your face at all!

    More: The 5 Best Ways to Clean Makeup Brushes


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    If one more person tells me to invest in a good tinted moisturizer, I’m going to lose it.” That’s an actual quote from an actual friend who has two actual kids and one more on the way. “It’s like the magazines think we have no idea that we’ll have less time in the morning when we decide to procreate, but I’ll be dead before I trade in my full-coverage foundation.”

    Amen to that. So in the name of digging up beauty tips for moms that aren’t BS (or, you know, a total waste of valuable time), we went straight to the source: We asked 11 new-ish moms to find out what the best beauty tip they ever got from a fellow mom was. Read on for our favorites below:

    “For some reason, my four-year-old son would never let me sit and polish my own nails during his quiet play time, and a fellow mom suggested letting him pick out the color so he feels involved without actually ‘helping’ me polish them—a.k.a. making a huge mess all over my hands. It worked like magic: Now he sits and plays with his toys while I polish my nails in peace. He likes to ‘approve’ them when I’m done.” —Anna, mother of one

    More: The Gifts 8 Real Moms *Actually* Want to Get This Year

    “The best beauty tip I learned is to put on my face masks while my daughter is in the bath. She thinks I look funny and ridiculous, I’m able to keep my skin looking amazing, and it’s all done in exactly 15 minutes. It may be the most genius thing I’ve ever done.” Katya, co-founder of Hey Mama

    “About two weeks before my due date, I got my eyelashes tinted at the insistence of a fellow new mom. Best decision I’ve ever made. I’d suggest going a little earlier in your pregnancy if possible though since it’s hard to lay flat on your back at eight-plus months.” —Chloe, mother of one

    “I keep hair ties in every single pant and jacket pocket that I have, this way I can easily put my hair in a top knot in the middle of the day when I realize that I should have washed it the night before! For moments like this, I just add baby powder to my hair so that it has a fresh smell.” —Adele, mother of two

    New Moms on Beauty Tricks
    Image: StyleCaster

    “I used the same Mary Kay powder blush my mom used for as long as I could remember. I even brought it to the hospital with me when I gave birth to my twins. When the nurse saw it, she laughed and suggested I replace it with a cream version that can do double-duty on my cheeks and lips for when I want to look presentable, and it was so true. I also find it’s easier to carry a small pot in the diaper bag and use my fingers when I’m out of the house, rather than a compact with a brush. Now, half my beauty products come in pots and require no brushes!”—Charlotte, mother of two one-year-old twin girls

    “My hair never does that braid-it-while-wet-and-get-perfect-waves thing so foam rollers were the best trick any mom has ever taught me. I usually put my toddler to bed around 8:30, which is three hours before I lay down. Once she’s out for the night, the foam rollers go in. They take about half an hour and I can do it while catching up on my shows. Genius!”—Christine, mother of one

    “I have long, thick hair and rarely get the chance to style it with a blow-dryer or flat iron. So when it comes to hair-wash day, I deep condition and comb it while I’m still in the shower. After I towel-dry my hair with a cotton T-shirt, I put it in a braid. I get to look cute while it’s drying and when it finally dries (usually next day for me), it’s wavy.”—Kira, mother of one

    More: 10 Fast Beauty Tricks from Top Mom Bloggers

    “I was trying to find another use for nipple cream after coming home from the hospital. The first ingredient in mine was olive oil, so now I use it to remove eye makeup!”—Gioia

    “I had a friend that worked at a fancy department store counter for years, and she told me eye cream was a waste of money. Instead, when I have bags under my eyes, I use green tea bags instead.”—Francesca, mother of three

    “I literally have 12 minutes in the morning to get ready since I go to the gym at 5 a.m. so I shower at night. When I wash my hair—I learned all about dry shampoo after being a mom, so now I wash my hair maybe twice a week—I spray it with beach wave spray, put it in a bun on the top of my head, and sleep with it. When I take it out, even after the gym, it’s dry and wavy. To get it looking someone uniform, I go in with a curling iron and curl a few choice pieces. It saves me almost 20 minutes that I definitely don’t have in the morning.”—Lori, mother of two

    “Cream highlighter is your friend! Dab it on the inner corners of your eyes and in the center of your eyelid, and you just might trick your co-workers into thinking you got more than four hours of sleep last night.”—Max, mother of four kids all under age 5

    More: 9 DIY Skin-Care Ingredients That are Bad for Your Skin


    Originally posted on StyleCaster.com


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