10 Easy Insider Beauty Tricks
Ever had a polish job marred by tiny bubbles? Here’s how to get the upper hand next time, says celebrity manicurist Jenna Hipp: Before you apply color, roll the bottle between your palms rather than shaking it, which can introduce air into the formula. Then, after you apply the first coat, let it dry for a full five minutes. If you paint over wet nails, the second coat is less apt to lie flat.
Want Some Body?
To perk up a limp-noodle ponytail, Kayley Pak, a stylist at the John Barrett salon, in New York City, recommends spraying dry shampoo midway down the tail to give it “guts” (hairstylist-speak for body). Fluff with your fingers, then set with hair spray.
If facial scrubs leave you feeling raw, there’s a kinder, gentler solution: Mix about ½ tablespoon of baking soda in your palm with enough water to turn it into a paste, suggests January Olds, an aesthetician in Santa Monica. Massage into damp skin, then rinse. “The granules feel smooth, even, and nonirritating,” she says.
The Cure for Mani Mess-ups
When you’re giving yourself a manicure, paint the nails on your dominant hand first so that you don’t end up polishing with your weak side when it’s wet, says Tracylee, a nail ambassador with Sally Hansen. Also, leave your thumbs for last so you can use them to clean up the other nails along the way. Take smudges off your thumbs when they’re dry with a cotton swab dipped in polish remover.
Summer brings with it two sworn enemies of hair—chlorine and sun. To fend them off, follow this advice from celebrity hairstylist Kristan Serafino. Before swimming, wet down and condition (but don’t rinse) your hair to keep it from absorbing chlorine. And when in the sun, pin up your hair in a twist or a chignon rather than wearing it down or in a ponytail. That way, it will be less exposed to damaging ultraviolet light.
DIY Skin Soother
For a make-it-yourself body-smoother, whip up this coconut treatment from Jennifer Yen, the creator of the Pur-Lisse skin-care line. In a bowl, mix together ½ cup ground rice (you can use a blender to grind), ½ cup coconut milk, ¼ cup brown sugar, and 1½ tablespoons freshly grated ginger. Stir until the ingredients form a paste, then smooth it over your entire body using circular motions. Rinse in the shower, then slather on moisturizer.
Next time you’re touching up your roots at home, don’t forget the hairline and the temples, where grays tend to lurk. After spreading the formula along your part, pull your hair into a ponytail (or a headband if your hair is short or you have bangs), suggests Marie Robinson, Clairol’s color director: “This will expose those errant grays so you can coat them properly.”
Traditional wisdom states that the best way to revive old, clumpy nail polish is with polish remover. Not so. For a smoother, less streaky result, use a few drops of fresh clear polish instead. “That will help thin the formula without separating it,” says Los Angeles–based manicurist Kristi Marie Jones.
Blend Right In
Cream blush is the best option for dry or fine-lined skin—but it should leave you looking flushed, not feverish. After you’ve applied the blush onto the apples of your cheeks, blend the outer edges with a synthetic makeup wedge dipped in liquid foundation. “This will massage the color into your skin so there isn’t a jarring contrast,” says Sarah Appleby, a makeup artist in New York City.
Two new reasons to love the humble cotton ball: You can preload it with powder blush or bronzer for on-the-go application. Or, if you’ve been heavy-handed with your cheek color, dab the puff in translucent powder and blend it on top to lessen the intensity, says Jacqui Stafford, a style expert and the author of The Wow Factor ($25, amazon.com).