Positively Beautiful

Positively Beautiful

by DailyMakeover

Eat Your Way Beautiful

The Sakara Life founders choose healthy ingredients for their organic meal delivery service.
Photo: Sakara Life

As you know, my lovely ladies, I’m a huge fan of eating well and taking care of my body to help me achieve beauty from the inside out. I not only ingest my antioxidants and nutrients that help me look good by eating whole healthy foods and taking supplements, I tend to use a lot of skincare and makeup products that contain these skin-improving goodies as well. Now don’t get me wrong, I do have my Sundays where I eat whatever I want and don’t go to the gym to allow for some sanity, but overall I believe you are what you eat. Many women simply don’t understand the true impact that food has on your skin, hair, nails and teeth. Well, let me tell you sisters, it does make a difference. And if you can manage to clean up your act 80 percent of the time, a splurge here or there is not going to kill you.

I recently discovered a couple of true beauties based in New York City, Danielle DuBoise and Whitney Tingle, who have created an organic food delivery company called Sakara Life. The word “sakara” in an ancient Sanskrit word meaning “the manifestation of thoughts to things.” Their amazing company shares my philosophy completely about empowering yourself through health, balance and overall well being. These two empowered women have found a positive approach to eating healthy wholesome foods that are delivered straight to your door to not only instill beauty on the inside but on the outside as well. You are pretty much guaranteed to feel fabulous each day you are eating their beauty-boosting treats, which are delivered to your doorstep in five- to 20-day packages with weekends off for a little bad-for-you fun balance. I interviewed the girls at Sakara Life to have them share with me their motivation for creating this amazing system.

Carmindy: What two sentences best sum up your philosophy?
Sakara Life: Eat clean, organic, local and fresh foods that you can trust. Love what your putting in your body so your body can love you back (even if it’s an extra fudgy brownie sundae, own it and be proud of it — your thoughts matter)!

Why is it so important to have a food balance in your life?
As two people that have gone to extremes with food, we understand the need for quick fixes, easy eats and food on the go and that sometimes eating healthy takes too much time. When you’re too busy to worry about your own well-being, then you are out of balance. Living in balance means you take time to be mindful about what you are eating, drinking and thinking. It doesn’t have to be perfect but it does have to be thoughtful. Everything in your life has, is and will come from you and your well-being, so it’s important to take care of yourself and find balance.

What are the top three foods to combat aging?
Alkaline water, organic dark greens (kale, chard, etc.) and avocados.

What are some of the skin benefits when trying one of your programs?
Our program is full of fresh, organic fruits, veggies and whole grains. Most people think hydration comes from drinking your 64 ounces of water a day, but ideally, your hydration should come from the foods that you eat, like fresh fruits and veggies. There is a very particular molecular structure of water in these foods that is a super hydrator for the skin and helps flush out all of the toxins that cause inflammation and breakouts.

What would you consider skin superfoods?
Coconut oil, cacao (raw) and organic cucumbers.

What would you consider foods that are skin killers?
Anything with trans fats, non-organic dairy and highly processed foods (even vegan things like veggie burgers!).

Body Beautiful

As we begin to see sleeveless dresses and sandals arrive in stores and Easter candy on drugstore shelves, we know that spring is almost here and it’s time to shed the winter weight! It is time to get into that gym for some fine-tuning before the season arrives so our bods are in peak condition. Keeping your body healthy is so important in achieving all-over beauty and helps raise your self-esteem. No matter what size or shape you are, treat your body as you would your face and care for it!

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Create a challenge for about five days that you can do with a group of friends and encourage one another to really push the limits. Recently, I grabbed a few girlfriends and my awesome trainer Lauren Goldberg and headed down south to Miami for an informal girl’s bikini boot camp. This fun, healthy getaway is great to do with your friends because it allows you to split the cost of the trainer and hotel rooms. It also empowers you to have a group of like-minded friends who will support you during this challenge.

In Miami, we woke up every day to a healthy antioxidant rich breakfast of fresh fruit, egg white omelet’s with veggies and green tea with almond milk. Then, we packed our beach bags, slathered ourselves in my favorite sunscreen—SkinCeuticals Sport UV Defense 45—and then hit the beach for an hour walk/run in the soft sand. After the run/walk, we changed into bathing suits and cooled down by taking a swim in the ocean, and then we relaxed under umbrellas with good books and even better conversation. If my lips became chapped or dry, I smoothed on my favorite Fresh Sugar Rose Tinted Lip Treatment SPF 15 and kept my eyes defined with my Natural Beauty Inspired By Carmindy Forever Stay Eye Pencil in Chocolate Brown.

When we left the beach, we stopped at a great cafe for a lunch of grilled asparagus and tuna tataki and lots of water with lemon. We shopped a bit at some local boutiques then headed home for a quick rinse off before changing back into workout clothes.

We then headed to the indoor/outdoor gym for our second workout of the day, where we did a total of one hour of full-body cross training followed by another 30 minutes of cardio. It was intense, but whenever one of us wanted to stop our trainer Lauren kept us going by telling us how hot we all were and how much better we would look in our bikinis after this week. After the gym, we rewarded ourselves with a healthy dinner of steak, grilled veggies, coconut sorbet and a good bottle of wine before collapsing into bed.

After five days we all lost weight, felt great and vowed we would do this more often. It’s better to take a vacation and come back feeling better then ever then to take one where you eat and drink yourself into a coma every day, and then have to come home with the pressures of work, not enough time, kids etc. and try to get back in shape. Use the freedom on your next getaway to push yourself towards a better you. You will be wearing those little sundresses with pride before you know it!

As an established makeup artist, many beauty brands send me samples of their latest products for consideration. I only write about the items that I truly love and I always abide by Daily Makeover’s Editorial Ethics Pledge in each of my Positively Beautiful posts.

New Year, New You!

Happy New Year everyone, and for all of those who want to make New Year’s resolutions for this coming 2011, let’s try focusing on the positive. Here are some of my favorite positive beauty resolutions that are easy to do and cannot only help ourselves, but others as well.

My first suggestion is to promise not to tear your self down anymore. From this moment forward, try to avoid saying anything negative about yourself like, “I hate my dark circles” or “My skin looks gross”. Try using only positive words and thoughts about the fabulous new you in 2011 and watch as confidence starts to crawl into your day-to-day life.

Another great resolution is to promise to compliment one woman each and every day. Whether she has beautiful skin or is wearing great outfit, let these ladies know it! It will boost their self esteem and make you feel good about yourself too.

One of my favorite fun resolutions is to promise yourself to think outside of the box when it comes to your basic makeup routine and take a chance. Go for that amazing red lipstick you have always dreamed of wearing or play up your eyes with a smoky purple hue that you are always too nervous to try. Yes, you can get away with it, and it’s good to bust out of your makeup rut from time to time. It is just makeup, so go ahead and have some fun! So this new year add a few positive beauty resolutions to your list and watch 2011 unfold to be your best year ever!

Natural Beauty Down Under

This is my second year in a row kicking off the New Year in Sydney, Australia for my winter vacation. I’m always just blown away by how amazing the women are here — we Americans can really learn a thing or two from these beautiful women. They love to hike, kayak, run, surf and swim to stay in shape. They moisturize daily and are diligent about sunscreen, as the Australian sun is the most powerful in the world.

They wear minimal makeup, adding just enough to play up their features in a natural way. A little foundation, highlighter, eyeliner, mascara, blush and lippie (as they call gloss or lipstick) and they are ready to roll. They are comfortable in their own skin and like looking unique and different from one another. Never do you hear these women obsess over weight or age or compare themselves to other women. They smile all the time without worrying about crow’s feet and eat and drink heartily without worrying about every calorie that goes into their body.

I have yet to see an army of plastic surgery addicts like we see in our U.S. cities, or any young girls trying to emulate fake-looking reality show stars who are over-tanned, lips over-plumped and hair, nails and makeup overdone. In a nutshell these Aussie lasses are all about life’s perfect balance. They are happy and healthy and oh so beautiful. So let’s start the new year off like our sisters from down under and embrace our confident selves as it’s never too late to change the way you treat yourself!

Asian Packets Of Beauty

Asian women are known for having beautiful skin and remaining relatively ageless. I have discovered some of their magical skin secrets, and now I’m totally hooked. Many of my girlfriends and I travel frequently all over the world and we always bring back whatever fantastic foreign beauty finds we come across to share with one another.

I have just discovered a few facial-cleansing products that come in easy and convenient little travel packets, one from Japan and the other inspired by ancient Chinese medicine to create an energy balance to the skin. The packaging, design and innovation that’s generated from this part of the world never ceases to amaze me and it’s always exciting to play with new products from or inspired by Asian tradition.

The first product is the Komenuka Bijin Facial Cleansing Powder from Japan. This rice bran cleanser gently exfoliates dead skin cells and leaves the skin feeling squeaky-clean. It contains rice bran, aloe, seaweed and coconut oil and when applied to wet skin lathers up in a creamy mask that washes away all impurities and grime. The powder comes in little individual packets housed in a cute clear “Cup O’ Soup” style container and is available at www.komenuka-bijin.com.

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Everyone who follows me knows by now that I am a huge fan of antioxidants, so when I discovered the WEI Pomegranate Buffing Beads, it was love at first scrub. This pretty box of daily exfoliating packets cleanses the skin and purifies toxins to clear the way for open energy flow. Pomegranate is one of the most powerful antioxidants that’s great for the skin, and the beads scrub away rough skin encouraging new cell growth and revealing brighter younger skin underneath. You can find this fabulous Chinese herbal beauty line at "http://www.weibeauty.com/"target="_blank"rel="nofollow">www.weibeauty.com and be sure to check out the four categories of beauty-balanced skincare.

As an established makeup artist, many beauty brands send me samples of their latest products for consideration. I only write about the items that I truly love and I always abide by Daily Makeover’s Editorial Ethics Pledge in each of my Positively Beautiful posts.

Get Fit and Feel Fabulous!

Attaining beauty isn’t only achieved by the creams, lotions or potions we put on our faces or by what we paint, swirl and sweep on our pretty features. It’s also how we treat our bodies. If you have read my blogs about powerful antioxidants like Glowelle, you understand that internal health is an intricate part of great looking skin and that all-over health is key to creating all-over beauty.

Fitness and everyday good nutrition is a serious part of my daily regime and I learned most of it from the team at Peak Performance Gym in NYC. My good friend, celebrity trainer Joe Dowdell, owns this private training gym and has partnered up with nutrition expert Doctor Brooke Kalanick to write a fantastic new book called Ultimate You: A 4-Phase Total Body Makeover For Women Who Want Maximum Results.

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In the past I think most information out there on women’s fitness has been delivered in fast fix sound bites and gimmicky hooks like “How to Lose 10 Pounds in 2 Seconds.” This kind of approach never works and has left most women frustrated and feeling defeated. Television shows like The Biggest Loser and Celebrity Fit Club have shown that there is no fast fix and that good health is a life long commitment, but one that will bring you beauty, strength, energy and confidence for a lifetime. Now that’s worth it! So start with the basics and grab a copy of Ultimate You to educate yourself on the right way to kick start your over-all health and well-being. In this body bible you will learn that the scale is not such a great way to monitor your progress but instead look for top markers like lower body fat percentage, loose fitting clothes, gains in strength, and inches lost. You will discover some of the top foods for looking and feeling beautiful like salmon, cherries, kale and green tea. Tone up your body with easy photo-guided strength and energy system training.

The knowledge you will learn in this book will save you heaps of money too as personal trainers can run you about $150 per session and nutritionists up to $500. This book gives you all the secrets from these top two pros so you can do it on your own. Give yourself this gift and be bikini ready by summer. Now that’s beautiful!

Can Wheat Be Making Our Complexions Dull?

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Is your face dry, rashy or puffy? Have you tried every cream, lotion and serum only to wind up low on cash with no results? The problem may not be the products but what you are eating. We all know that a diet rich in antioxidants and omega 3s can help keep your skin glowing and healthy and bad eating can really show in your face, but if your diet is a good one and you still have skin issues you may be allergic to wheat gluten?

Jennifer Esposito's Butter and Sugar Line

A very dear friend of mine actress Jennifer Esposito had this very problem. For years she battled with a very yellow cast to her skin, puffy eyes and serious dryness that just would not go away no matter what she tried and as her makeup artist on many occasions I witnessed these issues not getting any better. Her nails were brittle, hair dry and as time went on she also felt sluggish and fatigued. Finally, after many trips to different doctors she was diagnosed with Celiac disease and extreme allergy to wheat gluten that causes these very symptoms.

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Wheat gluten is found in all wheat-based products like bread, pasta and cakes and acts like the glue that holds them together. In many people’s bodies it’s like internal toxic sludge and can cause the liver to work overtime and slows down the digestive process ie the puffiness, dryness and yellow cast to the skin. As soon as Jennifer went gluten-free her skin, hair and nails have changed 100%. The puffiness is gone and the yellowness has faded. Hydration has returned to her complexion and the nutrients are now being absorbed properly and she has never looked or felt better. Finally being able to overcome her personal beauty battle she is helping bring awareness to this issue by spreading the news to women who may have these symptoms to demand Celiac disease testing from their doctors.

She has also just launched Butter and Sugar, a fabulous new line of gluten-free goodies like bread, cookies, cupcakes, donuts and even pancake mix that can be ordered at butterandsugarglutenfree@yahoo.com while the website is being built.

See? So you really can have your cake and eat it, too.

On Set For Ciba Air Optix Aqua

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I just finished filming an online commercial for the fab contact lens company CIBA for their great Air Optix Aqua lenses. There are a lot of makeup tips I provided for contact lens wearers to ensure great looking eyes that stay comfortable. Keep an eye out for the video on CIBA’s website in the coming month but for now here are five tips you lens wearers can use for beautiful and healthy eyes.

One of the first things you should know is when to throw things away. Liquid eyeliners and mascaras have a three-month shelf life and need to be discarded and replaced to ensure bacteria does not get into your eyes irritating them.

Second tip is to put in your contact lenses first before applying makeup so your vision is spot on and you can avoid tearing or smudging.

Third, make sure you blow off any excess shadow from your eye shadow brush so you don’t get particles into your eyes or opt for cream shadows instead to avoid the problem all together.

Fourth is to use regular mascara on the top lashes and waterproof mascara on the bottom lashes to keep from getting runny makeup if you tend to use eye drops throughout the day.

Highlighter

And last, if you want to keep eyes bright, apply a cream highlight shadow like Sally Hansen Natural Beauty Inspired By Carmindy Natural Highlighter Duo in Pink Luster across the entire lid from the lash line to under the brow bone then apply a navy blue eyeliner along the upper lash line. Curl the upper lashes and apply one coat of black mascara then add on an extra coat to the outer lashes for a little bit of a lift.

As an established makeup artist, many beauty brands send me samples of their latest products for consideration. I only write about the items that I truly love and I always abide by Daily Makeover’s Editorial Ethics Pledge in each of my Positively Beautiful posts.

Liquid Beauty

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Maintaining beautiful skin starts on the inside and powerful antioxidants should be your age fighting weapon of choice. You should be as diligent with taking antioxidants as you are about protecting the outside with sunscreen and if you do it every day you will see a major difference. SoU, a cool Canadian company have created Quick Fix a ultra-high purity and concentrated liquid nutrition that fights premature aging.

It comes in little vials and can be thrown in your morning juice or taken like a quick shot every day. This lovely beauty potion helps counter free radicals leading to your cells’ degenerative process thereby increasing cellular protection and slowing down the aging process. What’s not to love about that? Yes you can ingest antioxidants in such foods as blueberries, salmon, spinach, flax seeds and green tea, but sometimes our eating can get a bit off track and taking a little liquid dose each morning can only help your skin a bit more. Some of the active ingredients come from green tea, whortleberry, acai, pomegranate and vitamin c. What’s really cool is SoU has these amazing little refill cases that are slightly larger than an iPod and hold four vials to make it chic and easy to travel with.

You can choose an exotic wood finish, anthracite black, translucent green, vivid red or my favorite brushed aluminum. You can also choose from a Quick Fix collection of liquid nutrients created to fight other issues like stress, low immune systems and even hangovers. I love the idea of a magical liquid hangover cure.

Now that is a great gift for a friend! Visit www.SoUboutique.com.

As an established makeup artist, many beauty brands send me samples of their latest products for consideration. I only write about the items that I truly love and I always abide by Daily Makeover’s Editorial Ethics Pledge in each of my Positively Beautiful posts.

Spa Etiquette

While still on holiday in Bali, I have decided to take a grand tour of all the fantastic spas in the area of Seminyak and get myself buffed, scrubbed, rubbed, polished, painting, wrapped and steamed all in the name of beauty. While doing this I have noticed a few things about spa etiquette and want to share them with you so the next time your pampering yourself the experience will be a peaceful and clean one.

First off when going to a spa make sure you start off clean. If you have just come from the gym or rolled in off the beach please take a quick shower. This is good for a few reasons and the main one being you don’t want your skin to break out. If sweat, salt water or sunscreen is all over your dirty bod and you lay down to have different special oils and creams rubbed into your skin it may cause blemishes. Cleansed skin will really absorb the beneficial properties in the different treatments you may be getting. Another good rule is don’t get a scrub after a sunburn. I accidentally had a little sunburn on the back of my knees and calves and decided to go for the full body polish only to waste the time cringing in pain when she was buffing the backs of my legs. It seriously took all the relaxation out of it.

Bring panties to the party for those of you trying spa treatments in other countries. Some places encourage full nudity during treatments and some rather you keep a little thong on for modesty. Just feel out the situation when you get there and ask what they prefer. For ladies who are spa’ing together please keep your chatter to a low whisper when getting your mani/pedi’s. Not all of us want to hear how last nights limbo party went.

Last is show up early so all the rest of the days appointments don’t get backed up. This way you will get the full time booked and it’s a perfect opportunity to get sucked into buying all those yummy creams, candles and other spa knickknacks available.

After Holiday Beauty Detox

Okay, we are all in the same boat at the moment: Bloated, tired, dehydrated and a little rough after all the holiday madness. Now is the time to detox our bodies so we feel better and our skin, hair and nails will look better as well. We can all get an early jumpstart on this so by New Years Eve we will look smashing!

The first thing to do is to start drinking tons of water. Flush out all the bad stuff by drinking at least 8 glasses of water during the day. Drink about 4 ounces of pure unsweetened cranberry juice from the health food store each day to clean out that liver. All this fluid will help re-hydrate you and clean your system.

Get back on your healthy eating regime and daily exercise right away so you can erase the evidence of the holiday feast fest. Now it’s supplement time. If you are like me the healthy diet went out the window this week and the amount of sugar and carbohydrates ingested is starting to show with dull puffy skin. Start each morning with a few good anti oxidant and pretty skin supporting vitamins like grape seed extract, omega 3′s, vitamin C and coenzyme Q10. These are skin’s little helpers and can get you on the fast track to radiance.

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Now scrub away the sin in the shower with a good cleanser and a handful of white sugar. When I was home for the holidays I discovered a great cleanser in a local health food store by Alba called Sea Mineral Cleansing Gel. This kept my skin squeaky clean and did not leave a residue. The sugar will buff away any dry skin you may have leaving your face nice and smooth.

Deep condition your hair to keep it silky and shiny and diminish the dryness from the dryer and irons you may have over used for all of those holiday parties. After the shower, moisturizer your face, body, hands and feet with a rich cream to keep it supple. Make an appointment to get a mani/pedi asap so you will feel sparkly and new again.

Now by New Years Eve, you will feel amazing and be able to face 2010 beautifully!

As an established makeup artist, many beauty brands send me samples of their latest products for consideration. I only write about the items that I truly love and I always abide by Daily Makeover’s Editorial Ethics Pledge in each of my Positively Beautiful posts.

Swedish Beauties

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I just returned from a fabulous trip to Stockholm, Sweden for a beauty and wellness event hosted by the fitness wear brand Casall. I was a guest speaker and was excited to share my philosophy about enhancing your natural beauty with these women as well as learn about how they look and feel so incredibly beautiful.

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I absolutely love traveling the world and meeting inspiring women from different cultures to learn about their view on beauty. Every woman I met was gorgeous! Their healthy attitude towards their bodies and their skin is impressive and we had a great time sharing beauty secrets. The Swedes are very much into natural ingredients with regard to what they eat as well as what they put on their faces. Botanicals and antioxidants were on the top of their list for skin care and a rational and well-balanced take on food helps them keep in shape. They eat clean (but never starve themselves) and get plenty of exercise.

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These lovely ladies don’t overdo it with makeup but opt for a simple polished look of luminous skin with an emphasis on eyes. Very trend-forward, they love their eyeliner and keep cheeks and lips pink and fresh looking. The two main makeup companies they adore are Face Stockholm, which is also available in the states, and Make Up Store, which is their equivalent of our MAC and where they go to get fun eye shadows and fab false lashes.

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I brought goodie bags of my Sally Hansen Natural Beauty Inspired By Carmindy Luminizing Face Primers and Mystical Mauve Natural Shine Lipglosses, which were snatched up by every Swedish gal at the event and they simply loved the products.

Seems we are on the same wavelength when it comes to natural beauty.

As an established makeup artist, many beauty brands send me samples of their latest products for consideration. I only write about the items that I truly love and I always abide by Daily Makeover’s Editorial Ethics Pledge in each of my Positively Beautiful posts.

Fighting Sun Damage With The CO2 Laser

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Me before my treatment.

I grew up in sunny southern California where there was a surf team in high school, weekend beach parties at the Huntington Beach Pier and lots and lots of suntan oil. Being tan was a way of life and the only ads my mother had seen for sun care were the ones with the Coppertone baby and the puppy pulling down her swimsuit to reveal a bad burn. Ouch!

If I only knew then what I know now there would have been a lot more umbrellas, hats and zinc oxide in my life. Over the years all that time spent in the sun seemed to creep up on me in the form of brown sunspots and melasma on the sides of my face and my chest.

I stopped tanning about 13 years ago and became a sunscreen fanatic, but the damage was already done and there are definitely days when I wish I could erase the history of those sunscreen-free days. After a skin cancer scare on my chest this year that turned out to be just a result of old sun damage, I decided to do something about it. I talked in length with my dermatologist, the amazing Dr. Rosemarie Ingleton in New York, on the treatments that were available to combat my existing sun damage before it became worse. She told me all about the C02 Laser Peel and the amazing way it cleared up the damaged skin and rejuvenated the surrounding tissue, allowing for a healthy clear complexion. I had read a bit about it in magazines and was interested in how it really worked and it’s quite fascinating. Crazy cool modern technology!

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Getting the laser applied to my skin. Aren’t my goggles hot?

She explained to me that instead of one solid heavy-duty laser that zaps all the skin at once, the CO2 is done in a fractional grid of tiny pinpoint light beams that penetrate the skin in a pattern. It produces thousands of columns called microthermal treatment zones. This method protects the skin from enduring too much damage all at once because you have a large reservoir of healthy normal skin surrounding these zones, allowing you to heal very fast and have minimal side effects. The result is bye bye brown spots and hello pink baby skin. That said, the downtime is about 5 days and you must really be religious about sun protection going forward so the damage does not return.

I decided to go for it and wanted to share with you my C02 experience. When I arrived at her office on the day of the procedure, I was given a cocktail of Valium and painkillers and my face and chest were coated with numbing cream. Once that had set in and I was feeling mighty fine, I laid on a table and was given some not-so-chic eye protection. When the laser began I felt a hot sensation and actually smelled a little smoke, which was really freaky (I think that’s why they gave me the Valium)!

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My skin the day after treatment. Ouch!

After the laser was completed, my face and chest were wrapped in wet gauze and I felt like a mummy. My skin was very hot like I had a really bad sunburn (ironic I know) and I became a bit woozy so they aimed a fan at my face and spritzed me with water to cool me off. After about 20 minutes the hot sensation subsided so she coated me with Eucerin Aquaphor Healing Ointment and sent me home with care instructions.

The next morning I woke up feeling and looking like beef carpaccio with a flaky crust. An appetizing image I know, but that is exactly what it’s like and it does feel a little claustrophobic. It’s like a tight concrete mask was poured on your face overnight. I craved cold foods like mint chocolate chip ice cream and I washed a few times a day with gentle cleanser and sometimes mixed in a little vinegar to help cut through the thick Aquaphor ointment. After you pat your skin dry you have to slather the greasy Aquaphor back on, which feels heavy but is soothing and eliminates the tight feeling.

As the days went by, flakes of brown dead skin came off little by little revealing perfect, pink, baby skin underneath. It does get a bit itchy, which is a good sign that you are healing but make sure you do not scratch or pick. I took Benadryl, which eased the itch and also helped me sleep.

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My pretty in pink new skin!

After about 6 days I went back in to see Dr. Ingleton and took a photo of the new me. The results were fantastic! The dark brown areas are gone and my skin looks radiant. I was still a bit pink in the chest at the time the photo was taken but that has since faded and my skin looks amazing — It was totally worth the week of being uncomfortable. I’ve been crazy about wearing hats and coat myself in SPF 45 sunscreen daily. I think that’s a small price to pay for the great results I got.

So what do you think, would you do the CO2 laser to get rid of sun damage?

As an established makeup artist, many beauty brands send me samples of their latest products for consideration. I only write about the items that I truly love and I always abide by Daily Makeover’s Editorial Ethics Pledge in each of my Positively Beautiful posts.

Erasing Sleepless Nights

There’s nothing worse than looking into a mirror after a sleepless night to see dark circles in full effect and dull, lifeless skin. Lack of sleep can do a number on your appearance, but your mood can actually make it worse. The best way to perk up your complexion is to skip the self-loathing and self-criticism and just do a few little makeup steps to help cover it up and get on with your day.

Start by using some eye drops to brighten tired, red eyes. I love Collyre Bleu Eye Drops from France. They are bright blue so they look a little bit scary, but they make your eyes appear super white and wide awake.

The next important step is to bring radiance back to your skin. I love Sally Hansen Natural Beauty Inspired By Carmindy Luminizing Face Primer — I created it with light-reflecting particles so not only does your skin feel velvety smooth, but it actually looks lit from within.

Don’t spackle on heavy concealer to hide dark circles, instead opt for a bit of eye brightening concealer. Try Sally Hansen Natural Beauty Inspired By Carmindy Fast Fix Concealer in All Over Brightener — it’s a light pinkish concealer that instantly gives the eyes a well-rested look without caking up on the delicate skin. A quick dab of this miracle concealer will keep you looking fresh.

Fast Fix Concealer All Over Brightener

A swirl of fresh pink blush on the apples of the cheeks is key to looking healthy and rested so smile big and swirl it on with a big fluffy powder brush.

The final step to a refreshed look is a shot of navy blue eyeliner. The blue color helps enhance the whiteness of your eyes and opens them up so they look bigger AND brighter. For large eyes try rimming the inside of your eyes with a touch of blue liner for a look that makes your eyes pop. For smaller eyes smudge the color along the top lash line as close to the roots as possible to help really enhance them.

After trying these tricks you will look like you had a full 8 hours and then some!

As an established makeup artist, many beauty brands send me samples of their latest products for consideration. I only write about the items that I truly love and I always abide by Daily Makeover’s Editorial Ethics Pledge in each of my Positively Beautiful posts.

Fixing Summer Beauty Mishaps

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In the summertime you can face all kinds of beauty problems, from streaky self tanners to getting sunscreen in your hair. Fortunately I have some easy tips on how to conquer these issues in a flash.

If you were at the beach and applied your sunscreen but accidentally ended up missing a spot, cover your red sunburn mark easily with a swipe of concealer. Lightly apply a little concealer on the area in a shade that matches the rest of your skin and then dust on a yellow tinted powder to keep makeup in place and ease the redness. Try Sally Hansen Natural Beauty Inspired By Carmindy Truly Translucent Powder in Neutralizer.

If you spent all evening flawlessly applying your self tanner only to wake up with an unsightly streak, there is a way to fill it in and even it out fast. Grab a Q-Tip and dab a little self tanner across the streak and let it soak in. This will even out the white spot and not darken the tanned skin around it.

Batiste Tropical Dry Shampoo

If your hair gets a bit greasy at the beach because its come in contact with the sunscreen on your skin, grab a can of Batiste Tropical Dry Shampoo and spray it on any limp strands. This will erase greasy hair instantly and make your hair smell pretty and beachy.

If you find that your foundation just balls up when you try to apply it after your sunscreen, then choose a foundation that contains sunscreen in it already. I like Lorac ProtecTINT SPF 30 — it gives you light coverage and full protection. If you want a little bit more coverage, try the combination I use every day– Skinceuticals Ultimate UV Defense SPF 30 sunscreen, followed by my Sally Hansen Natural Beauty Inspired By Carmindy Your Skin Makeup. This combo always works for me because it blends together nicely and keeps me protected.

So don’t worry, there is always a solution to summer’s little beauty mishaps.

As an established makeup artist, many beauty brands send me samples of their latest products for consideration. I only write about the items that I truly love and I always abide by Daily Makeover’s Editorial Ethics Pledge in each of my Positively Beautiful posts.

The Right Way To Apply Self-Tanner

Neutrogena Energizing Citrus Sugar Scrub

Hopefully this summer you are out and about enjoying the nice weather with a healthy, natural looking summer glow — one that is fake, of course. If you are still a bit confused about how to apply self-tanner without looking like a streaky pumpkin here are a few of my favorite tricks and tips.

The first and most important rule when applying self-tanner is to exfoliate before you do anything. Smooth skin will absorb the self-tanner in a nice even way and minimize the streak factor. Get into your shower and shave all the necessary bits. Now exfoliate the skin with a good scrub that contains granules that will help with the sloughing off of dead skin. I like anything with sugar in it like Neutrogena Sugar Scrub Energizing Citrus Body Exfoliator, but you could even use regular old white sugar straight from the box.

After the shower towel dry and skip the moisturizer. If you slather on moisturizer first it will make you a bit streaky, so skip it and go straight for the self-tanner. To avoid having dark tan areas where skin is thick and absorbs more of the tanner — knees, elbows and ankles — keep a wet washcloth handy. After you apply the self-tanner all over, use the washcloth to buff over these rougher areas. Scrub your hands with soap and sugar to get all of the self-tanner off and you won’t get those brown palms.

L'Occitane Castanha Self-Tanner

When applying it to the face, I like to use a non-latex sponge for an even application. Lightly buff the tanner all over the face and also into the hairline and over the ears so it look nice and even. Don’t get dressed for about one hour and try not to brush up against anything that will ruin the application. I would recommend sitting straight in a chair for at least 30 minutes maybe working on your computer so it has time to absorb evenly.

My new favorite self-tanner is the L’Occitane Castanha Self-Tanner Progressive Natural Tan. Made from the Brazilian castanha nut, it is a natural way to get an all over tan without the harsh chemicals and it never gives you that funky smell like other self-tanners.

If it’s a very light and subtle tan you want, try a two in one product. Apply a moisturizing self-tanner like Jergens Natural Glow Daily Moisturizer. You will get hydration and a very light, streak-free color that you can build day by day.

As an established makeup artist, many beauty brands send me samples of their latest products for consideration. I only write about the items that I truly love and I always abide by Daily Makeover’s Editorial Ethics Pledge in each of my Positively Beautiful posts.

Sunburn Relief

Sunburn

No matter how diligent we are at applying sunscreen, from time to time you may forget a spot or don’t reapply when you should. You won’t know what hit you until later in the day when you discover that you’ve fired yourself silly. OUCH!

If you’re red and crispy, there are a few things you can do to ease the pain and help the healing along. First, take an aspirin to eliminate some of the pain. Take a cold shower and try my home remedy for cooling skin down: mix cold water and vinegar in a spray bottle and spritz your bod. It may stink a bit but it will help your poor skin feel better. A milk or oatmeal bath can also help sooth the skin and tame the pain, but make sure to rinse off with cool clean water when your done.

Do not rub on moisturizer or any type of petroleum-based salves — slather yourself in aloe vera gel instead. It may be a bit sticky but this is the best way to start the healing process.

Sally Hansen Natural Beauty Inspired By Carmindy Your Skin Makeup

If your face is red and you need to go out and face people there are a few tricks to conceal the lobster effect. Begin with a light layer of aloe lotion like Mario Badescu Aloe Lotion, then lightly stipple on a very soothing liquid foundation like Sally Hansen Natural Beauty Inspired By Carmindy Your Skin Foundation. Powder the skin with a yellow tinted loose powder that will help counteract the redness.

Stay away from any blush or bronzers and keep makeup minimal. A little dark brown, black or navy eyeliner and black mascara will make your eyes pop. Apply a cool toned lipstick to balance out the raging redness. Now look at yourself in the mirror and SWEAR you will never let this happen again!

As an established makeup artist, many beauty brands send me samples of their latest products for consideration. I only write about the items that I truly love and I always abide by Daily Makeover’s Editorial Ethics Pledge in each of my Positively Beautiful posts.

Primping In The Wilderness

Carmindy goes camping

There’s nothing like a little time in the great outdoors to
refresh your mind and body!

This time of year the weather is perfect for a hiking and camping trip. Even if you are being a rough and tumble outdoorsy chick, you can still look good in the woods! You just need a few specific things to throw in your backpack to keep you looking cute and help you stay protected from the elements.

The first thing you should pack is a great sunscreen. You need to apply it to the skin, no matter if the sun is shining or not. Even in overcast conditions you can get burned — the sun’s rays can penetrate through even the thickest, gloomiest clouds. Pack the Kinesys Travel Size SPF 30+ Sunscreen, it’s the perfect tiny size, so you don’t have to worry about lugging big, heavy tubes in your pack.

Sally Hansen Natural Beauty Fast Fix Concealer

You’ll also want to bring along a small sheer concealer — it can keep unsightly redness away and is a way better option than a whole face full of foundation. Try Sally Hansen Natural Beauty Inspired by Carmindy Fast Fix Concealer. Just dab on around the nose and areas where you may get a little red.

Keep your eyes defined with a smudge-free mascara on the top lashes only. Cheeks will be flushed from your hike and the brisk outdoor weather, so no need for blush. You lips however will need a little help. Throw a tinted lip balm in a zipper pocket in your pack for a bit of shimmering color and moisturization when you need it. I like Burt’s Bees Lip Shimmer, which is the perfect pretty balm.

Aubrey Organics Gone SPF 15 Bug Spray

Lastly, don’t forget bug spray to keep those pesky biting insects away. Please choose a DEET-free spray to keep yourself safe. I like Aubrey Organics Gone Safe & Natural Outdoor Spray SPF 10, because it’s safe and it also contains a little extra sunscreen for your protection.

With just these few simple products, you’ll look great without having to wear a ton of products. Have fun out there and look out for bears!

As an established makeup artist, many beauty brands send me samples of their latest products for consideration. I only write about the items that I truly love and I always abide by Daily Makeover’s Editorial Ethics Pledge in each of my Positively Beautiful posts.

The Magic of Argan Oil

Wild Woods Grove Argan Oil

Strolling through Borough Market in London the other day, I stumbled upon Wild Wood Groves Argan Oil. I had heard stories about this mystical oil being the rarest in the world and was curious about its special properties. I know small amounts are used in some beauty products, but I have never seen 100% pure oil available for sale before. I bought it immediately and was schooled in its history and beauty benefits.

Argan oil comes from a small area of Morocco where Berber women produce the oil by grounding up the seeds from the thorny argan tree. It takes 2 days of work, crushing and pressing the seeds to produce just one liter of this beauty potion. Due to over grazing by local goats, the trees are now protected and the Berber women of the area are only allowed to produce a small amount at a time, which makes this coveted oil even more rare.

For centuries argan oil has been a well-kept beauty and health secret of the Berber women, who use the oil to nourish their skin, nails and hair. It contains twice the amount of vitamin E as olive oil and is rich in anti-oxidants. Eight essential fatty acids help prevent moisture loss in the skin and its amazing anti-aging properties are well documented.

You only need a few drops of this non-greasy liquid gold to moisturize and protect your complexion. Rub a little on the hands and on cuticles to soften them up or rub a small drop into really dry hair to re-hydrate it instantly. I love the stuff and learned you can even cook with it and make yummy dishes, which is fab — if I cooked that is!

As an established makeup artist, many beauty brands send me samples of their latest products for consideration. I only write about the items that I truly love and I always abide by Daily Makeover’s Editorial Ethics Pledge in each of my Positively Beautiful posts.

The Best Natural Beautifier

honey

Sweet to eat and sweet to treat!

Is there anything sweeter than honey? Not only does it taste yummy, it also has fantastic beauty benefits, so we can enjoy eating it and using it on our skin and hair. In some cultures and ancient religions there is a superstition surrounding honey and many use it in rituals to attract money, love, admiration and attention.

My personal love of honey products started when I was on a girl’s trip to Tulum, Mexico and stumbled upon a local perfumery at the beach resort Coqui Coqui. The perfumery made this organic fragrance oil called Mielum that smelled like honey and was supposed to help attract men and money, according to local mythology. I bought 5 of them! I dab it on before big meetings or a special night out and love the light sweet fragrance it emanates.

Burt's Bees Honey Lip Balm

The smell is so subtle and lovely that I began looking into other honey based products. It turns out honey is rich in nutrients, amino acids, enzymes and antioxidants. It makes a wonderful moisturizer and can be used as skin beautifying facial mask. Simply apply it to a moist face and then cover your skin with a warm washcloth and let it steam the honey into your pores. Then rinse off with cool water and check out how fab your skin looks!

Korres Thyme Honey Cream

Honey is so hydrating it can be found in hair products and makeup as well. I found an amazing shampoo by Terax called Miele, which is perfect for dry hair because it adds in tons of moisture. Burt’s Bees Honey Lip Balm is great for smooth, sweet-tasting lips and I love Korres Thyme Honey 24-Hour Moisturizing Cream because it’s fab for your face.

Get sweet on this sticky stuff and it will keep you looking good!

As an established makeup artist, many beauty brands send me samples of their latest products for consideration. I only write about the items that I truly love and I always abide by Daily Makeover’s Editorial Ethics Pledge in each of my Positively Beautiful posts.