Earlier this week, we told you about this adorable kiss-mark manicure to try for Valentine’s Day. It was so cute, I just had to go home and try it out for myself. I was skeptical at first because we’ve all seen the nail tutorials that deem themselves “easy to try at home,” only to leave us with nail polish on every surface of our hand but the nail and a “design” that looks like something straight out of a swamp. But to my surprise, this love-themed mani was as easy as it is adorable. It took about thirty minutes, and I was able to do it without all of the fancy nail art tools.
- The same old red lip, smoky eye, black mascara, basic manicure. Here are outside-the-box ways to break out of your beauty rut, starting with that eyeliner you always wear. [Refinery 29]
- Unexpected retail news: Macy’s bought beauty chain Bluemercury, which means you’ll be soon be able to buy its products — and maybe even get its spa services! — at the department store. [New York Times]
- Have an extra $100,000 lying around? Why not buy the killer necklace Beyoncé wore for her Grammys performance? [Elle]
I don’t remember exactly when it was that I started hating my arms, but it’s been at least two decades. My wrists are okay. They are small and delicate, and bracelets hang off of them quite nicely. I’d even say I’m fine with my forearms. It’s the upper arm that’s a problem, the jiggly mess that stretches from my elbow to my shoulder.
Many women are uncomfortable with their upper arms. This is why the stilted hand-on-hip pose was invented in the first place, to fake upper-arm definition. Millions of women are photographed standing like stupid teacups just to disguise their arm flab. Surely there is a better, less awkward way?
Enter: The Fat Laser.
Full disclosure: I am not on the gel manicure bandwagon. But before you summon the lynch mob, hear me out: It’s not that I’m not enticed by the prospect of a hard-as-nails, two-week mani—believe me, I am. I’m simply irked by tinfoil-wrapped nails, the obligatory soak to remove the polish and the $30-a-pop price tag.
However, as someone who nearly always has her nails painted and is a regular user of base coats, top coats and the like, an at-home mani that lasted longer than five days without chipping continued to elude me despite my best efforts. That is, until my lovely mother, a reformed salon devotee, gifted me Sephora’s Formula X System for Christmas, a set she swore rivaled any salon manicure. Turns out, she was irrefutably correct; when you use the polishes altogether, you get a super-affordable and long-lasting alternative to pricey gel versions. Call me a convert.
After all that holiday shopping, it’s time to do a little indulging for yourself. Here, five luxurious holiday beauty treatments that pack in all the scents of the season, from chocolate and peppermint to frankincense and sweet orange. Bonus: They all ring in under $100, so if there’s someone on your gift list that’s leaving you stumped, buy them a gift card for one of these sweet services.
An interesting story popped up over on Refinery29 the other day. It was a piece that originally appeared on The Marshall Project, a newly launched nonprofit news site that focuses on the American criminal justice system, and it detailed the crazily resourceful ways female inmates create makeup products (or “fakeup”) behind bars.
According to The Marshall Project, federal jails offer products like liquid eyeliner, bronzer and lip gloss (who knew prisons were like mini Sephoras?), but most state and county prisons only dole out things like mascara and eyeliner. So women get crafty, melting down Jolly Ranchers to use as hair gel, crushing up colored pencils for eye shadow and even mixing coffee and face cream for foundation.
- The padded bra is officially a relic. Now you can get a saline injection that temporarily gives you a fuller chest (one doc calls them “vacation boobs”); breasts deflate in about 24 hours as your body absorbs the saline. [Shape]
- And now washing your face with plain old tap water isn’t good enough. People are swearing off the sink and only washing up with micellar water—a special blend of oil and water. Are they on to something? [Total Beauty]
Last week, I posed this question on our in-office messaging system, Slack: “What’s your favorite hand cream?” I thought the ladies of the office would chime in instantly, and from the male editors, I’d get crickets. Shocker: The guys here are serious when it comes to hand cream. (Almost as serious as they are about their beard oil.)
Here are the best salves, ointments, butters, balms, lotions and creams, as recommended by Philly Mag’s discerning editors. And proof that real men use hand moisturizer.
Following Starbuck’s announcement of the Chestnut Praline latte, its first new holiday beverage since 2009, some seasonal beverage devotees found themselves clutching their PSL’s for dear life. Luckily, the beauty benefits of pumpkin and its autumnal cohort are infinitely better than its sugary beverage counterpart. And even better? You scan score these fun get-you-glowing-from-within beauty treatments right here in Philly and the ‘burbs. New fall tradition, anyone?
Confession: I find makeup tutorial videos extremely mesmerizing. On numerous occasions, I’ve fallen down a black hole watching YouTube videos of Madison, a five-year-old girl who makes the most adorable makeup videos ever. (If you ever need to cheer yourself up, watch this. Or this. Or, oh my god, THIS. Just scroll to the 7:20 mark and you will explode from all of the cuteness.)
But it’s not just tiny, precocious beauty gurus that delight me. Watching anyone transform themselves with makeup is fascinating, especially when they venture into the grotesque or fantastical. Don’t believe me? Watch these videos for your best Halloween makeup ever. (Warning: It’s a black hole and some are more than a little creepy.)