Beauty On A Dime

Beauty On A Dime

by Megan McIntire

The At-Home Manicure

I’ve never been one of those women who views professional manicures as a necessity. I can honestly count the number of them I’ve had done on one hand. There’s a couple reasons for this: I hate the way it feels when someone files my nails, I end up chipping or smudging the polish within an hour after having them done and, most importantly, they cost too darn much.

Rescue Your Nails book

My new must-read manicure manual.

Apparently I’m not the only one. I recently had a chat with one of my absolute favorite people in the beauty industry, Ji Baek, a celebrity manicurist and the founder of the super-hip Rescue Beauty Lounge. Even though she owns her own nail salon/spa, Ji is still a huge proponent of the at-home manicure. So much so that she even wrote an A-Z guide to nails, including her step-by-step routine for DIY mani’s.

“The hardest part about doing your nails at home is actually committing to it,” says Ji. “It’s all about getting yourself into a routine. If you usually get your nails professionally done once a week, switch that to once a month. In between those visits, you can cut, trim, style and polish your own nails.”

Sound intimidating? It’s totally not. I picked up Ji’s book, Rescue Your Nails and found out all sorts of helpful tips on everything from how to trim your nails (from one side to the other, never start in the middle or you could end up splitting your nail) to the best way to apply polish (use wide, even strokes from the base to the tip and do two thin coats) and her secret weapon for beautiful cuticles (she rubs excess eye cream on them to make them super-soft).

Not only is it easy and less stressful to do your nails on your own, it will also save you tons of money. Think about it: the average manicure costs about $10 — that’s a minimum of $40 a month on your nails! Or you can spend $20 buying all the at-home products you need for a DIY manicure and have enough to do your nails for at least three months. For me that choice is easy.

Fake A Winter Flush


A pretty winter flush like Rose McGowan’s
is easy to achieve.
Photo: © Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images

When I think of winter beauty, the first thing that comes to mind is that beautiful, just-in-from-the-cold cheek color. It’s such a fresh and pretty look!

Women have been trying for years to find a way to fake that gorgeous, all-natural flush, unfortunately to no avail. It truly is the perfect rosy shade and it’s so difficult to find something that really replicates that — powders look too chalky and creams tend to slide and smudge off.

Fortunately, makeup artist extraordinaire Jake Bailey — he works with Katy Perry and Kyra Sedgwick — has a sneaky way to recreate that chilled cheek look without having to freeze your face off:

“I like to use a lipstain, like CoverGirl’s Outlast Lipstain, as a blush. It’s so pretty for winter and gives you that frostbitten look. Just tap your finger on the applicator, then tap your finger on the apples of your cheeks and blend. It’s translucent and it doesn’t travel or move so it’s longlasting. It gives you a great, natural flush that looks healthy.”

How fabulous and easy is that? Give it a try and tell me what you think!

As one the web’s largest beauty sites, constantly receives products from beauty companies for editorial review. Please read our Editorial Ethics Pledge if you’d like to know how we select products to feature.

Have A Katy Perry Valentine

Katy_perry_valentines_day_beauty_Schick.jpg (Blog Post)

Photo: © Charley Gallay/Getty Images for PCA

As anyone struggling to get “Firework” out of their head can attest to, Katy Perry is the It Girl of the moment. From racking up Grammy nominations and causing controversy on PBS to becoming a newlywed and guest-starring on sitcoms, girlfriend has had quite the year.

Somehow in that packed schedule of hers, she also found the time to pair up with Schick Quattro razors for a truly awesome Valentine’s Day promotion.

Visit the Dare To Be Spontaneous campaign on Schick’s Facebook page and send friends one of four e-cards inspired by Katy’s hit songs. I definitely LOL’ed over the “You make my heart go boom, boom, boom” card.

In addition to these fun cards, the brand is also kicking off a Facebook and Twitter campaign urging users to be spontaneous in order to win some truly awesome prizes, including a chance to see Katy on her upcoming California Dreams tour. Just like the brand on Facebook and follow them and Katy on Twitter to get the scoop and updates on how to enter to win.


Try on Katy Perry’s hairstyles in the Makeover Studio!

DIY Diva: The Strawberry And Sugar Lip Scrub


Photo: © Getty Images

Sugar is a wonderful thing. Not only is it sweet and delicious, it’s also an amazingly effective beauty aid. Check out this tip I learned from the team over at Sally Hansen. It’s a fun new DIY recipe that I just had to share with you guys. This little concoction makes your lips feel unbelievably soft and smooth and, as a bonus, tastes amazing if you just happen to sneak a lick. Easy, sweet and effective; just how I like my at-home treatments!

You’ll need:
2 large strawberries
1tbsp of sugar
1 Q-Tip

Crush the strawberries up until mushy, then mash in the sugar and thoroughly blend them together into a paste. Dab the Q-Tip in the mixture and rub onto lips in a circular motion. Rub off mixture with a tissue lick it off and enjoy the yummy treat.

The acids from the fruit combined with the rough grains of the sugar help exfoliate dead skin cells off your lips, leaving them feel smooth, soft and slightly sweet. It’s like strawberry shortcake for your pout!

As one the web’s largest beauty sites, constantly receives products from beauty companies for editorial review. Please read our Editorial Ethics Pledge if you’d like to know how we select products to feature.

Beauty Science Fiction: Lash-Enhancing Liners

Physicians_Formula_eyeliner_lashes.JPG (Blog Post)

Recently I’ve found myself more than a little obsessed with long lashes. I tried out lash extensions for the first time a few months ago and while they were awesome when I had them, my lashes were left weak, thin and totally sparse once they fell out. Sparse is definitely not a word you want to associate with your fringe.

Fortunately, beauty brands seem to share my lash obsession as companies have recently launched a slew of lash-growing products, treatments and makeup. This recent influx of lash lengtheners has created a whole new category in makeup: The Lash Enhancers.

The latest entry to the enhancer game is a new liquid liner from Physicians Formula called Eye Booster. It features a high-tech Japanese formula containing a potent peptide that, when applied along the lashline, helps enhance lash length and fullness. Since the liner is applied directly to the lashline, it targets the root of lashes for optimum efficacy.

I love the lash-enhancing effects, but even without that perk, this liner would be in heavy rotation for me. The flow-through brush makes it super-precise and easy enough to apply that even a beauty novice could draw a flawless line. Add in a long-wearing formula, a sweet $10.95 price tag and the added bonus of enhancing your lashes and I’m sold!