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Pre Valentine’s Day Beauty Tips and Tricks to Set the Romance Meter to RED


Image: Jamiemakeup.com

If you’ve got a new boyfriend, a hot date, or a tried-and-true love, Valentine’s Day is almost like Christmas. You daydream about the sappy possibilities for this most romantic of holidays like a little kid anticipating the gifts waiting under the Christmas tree. Will your beloved send you flowers at work? Will you find one of those oversized teddy bears and a heart shaped box of assorted chocolates waiting on your doorstep? Will he take you to dinner? A concert? A romantic moonlit picnic? Will you get the kiss of your dreams at the end of the night? Take a second to sit back and picture your fantasy Valentine’s day date, and don’t hold back all the cheesy details. Now, in your mind’s eye, how do you look when you greet your beau on Valentine’s Day? Maybe you’re a vision of classic beauty, all soft curls and glittery eyes. Or you’re edgy and vampy in dark lipstick and leather. Whatever the concept, we have some tips that will help you prep your desired look for the occasion and help your V-Day fantasies come true.

Skin


Image: Tropicalserentyspa.com

As you probably know, a canvas of fresh, bump-free skin is the best way to achieve the makeup look of your dreams. Right now, we’re absolutely obsessing over the healing powers of ginger, which is a life saver for eradicating acne scars, reducing wrinkles, and even soothing untimely pimples. Guess what, you don’t have to break the bank for this fix. DIY masks might be a little extra effort, but you probably already have many of the ingredients in your kitchen. Besides, a little extra effort is worth it for the most romantic of holidays. Heres the recipe for an at-home ginger face mask that will give you the skin you’ve always dreamed of, just in time for your Valentine’s date.

Perfume


Image: review168

The perfect perfume is extra important on Valentine’s Day. It’s a fool proof way to entice your man to lean in just a bit closer, and linger next to you for just a bit longer. Maybe you already have a signature scent or maybe you’ve been thinking of trying out something new. Take Valentine’s Day as the excuse you’ve been waiting for to buy a new perfume or cologne. Mist your perfume (don’t douse it) just around your wrists and hair– you’ll give off little, tantalizing whiffs of the scent as you move, leaving him gasping for more.

Hair

While there’s really no wrong way to do your hair for Valentine’s Day, there are a few mistakes that could really ruin your evening. First off, if the style you’re planning relies heavily on hairspray, save that look for another day. Valentine’s is about romance, sure, but it’s also about touching, closeness and intimacy. No one wants to go in to stroke your hair only to run their hand through a crunchy lump of gunky, hair sprayed curls, no matter how visually appealing. In addition, any hair style that requires you to stay still for long periods of time to stay coiffed could really put a damper on your fun and should not be attempted on Valentine’s. For these reasons, we recommend simple sleek ponytails which can be easily fixed and retied if need be, or classic straightened hair for your date.

Nails

As with hair, nails that impede your ability to touch, move, and enjoy should be avoided like the plague on Valentine’s Day. Instead of gluing on long acrylics, which look glamorous but are not conducive to actually using your hands, go short and polished. But short and polished doesn’t mean boring! The color and design is where you can really have fun. You don’t have to adhere to the Valentine’s theme of reds and pinks, though you certainly can if you like. Dark blue or purple is unexpected and fun. How about flecks of glitter, dark, rich tones, matte or metallic nails? The choice is yours.

Teeth

For the all-important Valentine’s Day kiss, white teeth are not only recommended, they are a necessity. This step requires a bit of advance planning, depending on how dazzling you want your smile to be. You can either opt for some classic whitening strips, or try a professional home whitening system to really show off those pearly whites.

Now you’re ready for that all important Valentine date, or you could choose to pamper yourself and stay in with your favorite movie crush! Ahh, bliss!


Images: Johnny Depp and Richard Gere

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How a Sparkling White Smile Could Change Your Life

Can a whiter smile really affect our personal and professional lives?

It takes just 7 seconds to make a first impression!  Whether we like it or not, we're judged by our smile, and is one of the first features noticed by those who meet us.  We're sure at some point most of us have looked at a photo and wished we had a whiter, brighter smile.  But, did you know having a whiter smile can actually change the course of your life.  How?  Keep reading to find out more.  

 

Crest Whitening Strips commissioned a study of the effects of a whiter smile conducted by Keltor Research. Professor Dacher Keltner, a smile psychologist and Professor of Psychology at University of California in Berkeley,  said:  “This study provides some of the first findings that speak to the powerful benefits of having a whiter smile.”   The study was conducted in three parts: 

  1. a simulated first date;
  2. a simulated job interview; and
  3. an online qualitative online questionnaire of more than 1000 people. 

 

How a whiter smile can impact your job prospects?

A whiter smile can really impact your prospects at work - both in getting your dream job and of being rewarded with a raise or promotion.  How? 

 

Image: LinkedIn.com

After having their teeth whitened, and as part of the simulated job interview component of the study, it was found: 

  • 58% of respondents felt they were more likely to be hired;
  • 53% of respondents felt they were more likely to receive a raise or be promoted;
  • 65% of respondents felt they were more likely to be seen as confident; and
  • 64% of respondents felt more confident. 
Further, in response to the more broad question in relation to a person's appearance, participants reported:
  • 68% felt it would lead to greater professional success; and
  • 64% greater financial success. 

There's no doubt about it, a whiter smile can definitely impact your job prospects and help you land the job of your dreams, as well as promotions. 

Read more: Do Good Teeth Make You More Employable?

How can a whiter smile lead to your dream date? 

Dr. Keltner says a white smile is, “the intense focus of what other people look at, and a sign of our warmth, confidence, and health.”

Image: Shapemagazine.com

A smile is one of the first features we notice when meeting someone new.  So, it stands to reason a whiter smile will impact your first date, but just how? 

In the simulated first date, after having their teeth whitened, the Kelton study for Crest Whitening Strips found: 

  • 59% of participants were viewed to be more outgoing; and 
  • 52% of participants were viewed to be more trustworthy. 

While many people believe white teeth appear healthier and cleaner, some scientists also guess that having white teeth is a sign of good genetics, which is attractive to potential mates.

How can a whiter smile impact your life generally? 

Still not convinced? now let's take a look at some more statistics gathered by the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry found:

  • 99.7% of adults believe a whiter smile is an important social asset;
  • 96% believe a whiter smile makes you more attractive to the opposite sex
  • 74% believe an unattractive smile can impact your job prospects

A whiter smile has been found to give you the appearance of youth and vitality.  A whiter smile will make you much more confident when you smile and meet people. 

How can you increase your confidence with a brighter, whiter smile?

Traditionally teeth whitening has consisted of either whitening toothpaste or expensive whitening in the dentist’s chair.  Over the last 20 years statistics have shown that tooth whitening treatments offered by dentists has increased by more than 300% - wow! Fortunately these days there are many options to brighten your smile. With so many options on the market, we've put together a few of the more popular options and a list of the pros and cons of each treatment. 

Image: pinterest.com

Option

Pros/cons

Whitening toothpastes and mouthwashes

  •  Pro – it’s one of the cheapest options.
  • Con - can be abrasive on tooth enamel.
  • Con - takes time to see results.

Over the counter teeth whitening kits / or whitening strips

  •  Pro – choices to suit each budget depending on which kit/strip option you go for.
  • Pro – whiten your teeth when and where it suits you best.
  • Con – can cause sensitivity.
  • Con – generally takes 3-4 treatments to see a noticeable difference to the color of your teeth.
  • Con – you have to mold the mouth tray and do all the work yourself.
  • Con – the formulations are generally not as strong.

Dental whitening treatment

  • Pro - Stronger formula than over the counter kits.
  • Pro – FAST results, generally with one treatment.
  • Con – more expensive.
  • Con – you need to visit the dentist, so less flexibility when and where you whiten.

 

No matter which option you choose the best smile is a healthy smile, so remember, teeth whitening will remove stains from your teeth that have built up over time, but it is really important to have a positive dental care routine and take great care of your teeth every day.  Now it's over to you to change your life with a sparkling smile!

So, as you can see, a brighter, more sparkling smile really can have a positive effect on your life and, these days, there's so much choice in how, where and when you whiten, along with how much you spend.  Here's to you enjoying the benefits of a Pearly White smile!

 

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Vintage Makeup Trends

As much as we love new makeup trends such as heavily highlighted cheekbones, nude lips and cream contouring, we certainly love looking back and taking inspiration from other makeup areas! From classic ‘20s makeup looks with vampy lips and silver eyeshadow to edgy pin up looks with black cat eyes and red lips, we collected all of our vintage makeup favorites so you can perfect the look the Hollywood stars are all rocking so beautifully! 

Refined Simplicity

image via elle.co.uk

The Essentials: Red Lipstick, Clear Lipgloss, Champagne Eyeshadow, Waterproof Mascara

The Application Trick: This look combines a gorgeous porcelain skin complexion with vibrant lips and eyes. Although the focus is both on the eyes and lips, it’s still a more simple look – instead of a heavy smokey eye or a glitter eyeshadow base, use a champagne shadow all over your lid and finish your eyes with a waterproof mascara. While normal mascaras tend to have different consistencies, it is easier to create that slightly clumpy, “spider lash” look with a waterproof, black mascara. When it comes to lipstick, play around a bit with different colors and create an ombré effect with cherry and coral red lipstick. To make the lips pop even more, apply a clear gloss on top.

 Pin Up With A Twist

image via vogue.com

The Essentials: Orange Eyeshadow, Lilac Lipstick, Black Eyeliner, Brow Defining Pencil, Peach Blush

The Application Trick: Say goodbye to the regular ‘50s pin-up vibe shades, such as red, cream and black and experiment with something completely different! although this look incorporates edgy colors, it still has that gorgeous, classic vintage look that we are absolutely in love with. After applying foundation and a peach blush on the apples of your cheeks, arch your brows with a help of a defining pencil and gel. Go bold with an orange eyeshadow all over your lids, all the way up to your brow bone, and apply a classic cat eyeliner on top (if you are feeling really experimental, you can try out a colorful liner as well). Create a color-block look by adding a cool-toned purple lipstick or lip gloss.

The Brigitte Bardot Look

image via elle.co.uk

The Essentials: Black and White Eyeliner, False Lashes, Nude Lipstick, Contour Powders

The Application Trick: The perfect, matte complexion is just as important as the iconic eye makeup in this look. Start with a primer and a velvet, matte foundation, and once you have an even base, gently apply the contour colors – a cool toned brown on your cheek bones and a hint of highlighting powder on top and down the bridge of your nose. Instead of your regular blush, try to find a more nude one, such as a taupe or beige blush to complement the eye look. Start off the eyes with an eyelid primer and apply a matte ivory shade all over your lids as a base. Draw a small line into the inner corners of your eyes with a white eye liner and gently smudge it out to make your eyes look brighter and bigger, then follow up with a matte black liner. Instead of a flick, leave the end a bit thicker, and make sure to apply both top and bottom false lashes. If you would like to open up your eyes even more, apply white liner to your lower lash line as well.

Great Gatsby Vibes

image via vogue.com

The Essentials: Grey Eyeshadow, Cool Toned Red Lipstick, Terracotta Blush, Brow Pencil

The Application Trick: There is nothing not to love about this 20’s inspired, gorgeous makeup look! To recreate it, start with making your brows a bit more dramatic and arched – this will help you achieve the perfect, smudged out eyeshadow look as well. For the eyeshadow, start with the lightest color in your inner corner and gradually apply and smudge together a lighter and darker grey shade. You don’t have to create an edgy cut crease look or apply a liquid liner, just keep your eyes soft yet noticeable. A blue-based, cool toned red lipstick will go together perfectly with the light smokey eyes, and to make this makeup look even more ‘20s inspired, create an arched lip line at your cupid’s bow with the help of a lip liner (in the exact shade of your lipstick). Enhance your beautiful arched red lip with a bright smile to make the color pop, a brighter, whiter smile is easy with an at-home whitening kit

Hollywood stars are rocking the vintage makeup look lately, we’ve put together our tips for creating Movie Star Chic on the Cheap ensuring you’ll rock vintage movie star glamour!

 

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Engagement Photoshoot Tips

Image: plantheday.com

 

There are numerous good reasons why you should take engagement photos with your newly betrothed. First, it’s super fun to be a model for a day. If you wish to be included in your local newspaper’s wedding announcements, a professional engagement photo is almost always a requirement. On a personal note, engagement photos also make wonderful mementos that you can give to members of your family and keep for yourself for years to come. You can even integrate wedding photos with the decor at your wedding reception, using them on the wedding program or on your save-the-dates. It’s also a great practice run for getting those poses just right for your wedding photos and learning how to get the best shots of you as a couple. Read on to learn how to look your best in these special pictures and ensure your photoshoot runs smoothly.

Finding the right photographer

Image: laurahernandezphotography.com

 

Ask your recently married friends who they used for their engagement or wedding photographer, or search the web for photographers in your area. We recommend checking out their deals and packages and selecting a photographer who includes an engagement photoshoot as part of the overall package for your whole wedding process. The engagement photoshoot is a time you can get to know your photographer one on one and see how they work. You can even think of the engagement photoshoot as an audition for the photographer. 

If you plan to submit a snap to your newspaper, check the paper’s website for their photo guidelines, which may dictate everything from picture quality to size to passable poses. Inform the photographer of these rules before the shoot so he or she brings the right camera and steers the shoot in the right direction. Think about how you want the photos to look. Do you want to be candid and casual, or formal and posed? Make sure you, your fiancé, and the photographer are all in agreement and on the same page. Don’t forget to plan ahead: you should submit your photos to the newspaper at least three months before the date of the wedding.

Choosing the location

Image: Glamourandgraceblog.com

 

You can take your engagement photos almost anywhere, from a photography studio to your living room to outdoors, or even in your own backyard. If you wish to shoot on location, let your photographer know. He or she will probably have some ideas for beautiful places to take your photos. If you and your fiancé have someplace that holds a special memory for you as a couple, you may suggest that as a location. Otherwise, look for a park, a botanical garden, or a landmark in your town or city that holds meaning for you and is aesthetically pleasing. Again, choose the location in advance. You may have to contact the management of the location to get the go-ahead for the shoot.

What to wear

Image: Favim.com

 

You can choose your outfit based on the vibe you’re going for. If you’re doing a casual photoshoot in your home, you can even wear dark colored jeans and a sweater as long as they’re well fitted, classy, and not frumpy. It’s your shoot, so wear what makes you feel comfortable. You can never go wrong with a cute sundress, but we recommend avoiding loud patterns and prints. You and your fiancé don’t have to be matching, but you should coordinate enough that your outfits are complementary, not clashing. Simple jewelry is the best way to go with accessories: you don’t want anything distracting from your gorgeous face!

Beauty Prep

Image: everafterguide.com

 

You want your smile to shine bright and white in your engagement photos, and this goes for both of you, so of course teeth whitening is a must. This step can require a bit of planning in advance if you need to book an appointment with your dentist. However, you can also choose a home teeth whitening system. You’ll want to maintain your pearly smile in the months leading up to your wedding, so it’s much more budget friendly and efficient to invest in a home system rather than making repeated trips to the dentist. Opt for classic whitening strips, or try an at home LED whitening system. Make sure to start the whitening process at least two weeks in advance of the shoot to get the best results. 

As any good bride-to-be worth her wedding cake knows hair and makeup trial appointments in advance of the wedding are essential to the beauty prep process, so knock out two birds with one stone and book your trial appointments on the morning of your engagement photo shoot. Professionally done hair and makeup will help you look and feel super confident and polished while on the shoot. Beware you make sure to leave extra time in between the salon and the shoot, just in case your look ends up taking longer than expected, or if you have to make unexpected changes to your hair or face. You may be able to get a special deal on your engagement and wedding makeup if you are using the same makeup artist, with the added bonus of knowing you like the way the artist works.

The most of important thing to remember is why you are doing the photoshoot in the first place - to celebrate your engagement to the person of your dreams who you want to spend the rest of your life with. So enjoy your engagement shoot and get ready to cherish the photos of you as a couple forever after!

Ready to start planning the wedding and have a budget to stick to?  Have a look at DIY Bridal Tips For the Budget Savvy Bride where we’ve put together a heap of hints and tricks to plan an amazing day on a budget.

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At Home Whitening Kits vs Dentist Whitening Treatments

Image: vivadental.co.uk

When it comes to your teeth, you only want to use the best and most effective products. You choose everything from your toothpaste, to mouthwash, to dental floss carefully to ensure you keep your smile healthy. But what about your whitening products?

There are so many options out there, and it can be tough to know which whitening method is best for your teeth. Let’s talk a bit about the reasons whitening works, and two of the most popular methods:

  • whitening kits you can use at home;
  • and professional treatments at the dentist’s office.

Why Whiten?

If you have stained, dull, or yellow teeth you might find yourself hiding your smile. It’s important to feel confident when you smile, so using whitening products is a simple way to get that confidence back. DearDoctor.com tells us how these whitening products work, “Whitening involves applying bleach solutions to the teeth. The bleach attacks the highly colored organic molecules that lodge between the crystals of tooth enamel (the outermost tooth covering) or in the dentin (the tooth material under the enamel). It's these organic particles that give the teeth a stained appearance.” Applying a whitening solution to your teeth can restore them to their dazzling shade of white in a short amount of time.

About at-Home Whitening Kits

The American Dental Association’s Mouth Health blog breaks down the process on at-home whitening kits, “Peroxide-containing whiteners actually bleach the tooth enamel. They typically come in a gel and are placed in a tray that fits on your teeth. You may also use a whitening strip that sticks to your teeth. The concentration of the bleaching agent is lower than what your dentist would use in the office.” You can get these kits at your local pharmacy or even order them online. They typically come in varying strengths, and the strength of the bleaching agent can impact the price of the kit. The kits generally use a bleaching formula similar to those used by a dentist, with the main difference being that you're doing the work to mold the mouth trays, and you aren't paying for the dentist's time in supervising the prodedure. 


About Dental Office Whitening Treatments

WebMD explains the basics of getting a whitening treatment at your dentist’s office, “The most common one involves custom-made trays filled with bleaching solution that fit firmly over your teeth. Because your dentist supervises the procedure, a stronger bleaching solution can be used than what's found in home kits.” The process can often be done very quickly, and you can leave the dentist’s office with drastically whiter teeth the same day you get your treatment. 

Which Method Should You Use?

First things first, talk to your dentist and see what they say. They know your teeth better than anyone, and they will probably have some good advice about which method you should use.

  • Choose an at-home kit if you don’t have far to go. If your teeth aren’t too dull or stained, then you might want to consider using a kit at home. If you don’t need to make a huge improvement, then an at-home kit will give you great results.
  • Choose a professional whitening session if you want to see drastic results. If you have lots of stains and discoloration, then a dental visit might be in order. Professional whitening at your dentist’s office can drastically whiten your teeth in a very short amount of time. Dental Health’s blog shows how fast these treatments can work, “Your dentist will need to assess your teeth to make sure you are suitable for the treatment. Once it has been agreed, this procedure usually takes about one hour.” One hour to whiter teeth, that’s fast!
  • Choose an at-home kit if you’re on a tight budget. These kits are typically cheaper than a professional whitening session at the dentist. This is because you are obviously doing all of the work yourself, so you aren’t paying for the dentist’s time. A professional whitening session can be pretty expensive as Your Dentistry Guide illustrates, “in-office bleaching is more expensive than take-home alternatives. Its cost, on average, is $650…” Depending on the at-home kit you purchase you will probably pay a lot less – the Pearly Whites kits cost as little as $59.99. You might get a whitening formula that is slightly less powerful than what they use at the dental clinic but for many people that’s not an issue as their teeth don’t require very much work to whiten.
  • Choose a professional whitening session if you have specific dental concerns like fragile or problematic teeth. Since these sessions are performed by a certified dentist, you will always be under the care of a professional.
Whichever method you choose, whitening your teeth can improve your self-confidence and make you feel proud of your smile, so get whitening today and start seeing the difference a brighter smile can make!Save
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