At Home Dermaplaning!

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So by now you may or may not have heard of dermaplaning as the hot new facial service available to the stars…

For those of you who haven’t heard about it, here’s the skinny: dermaplaning is a service that consists of a skilled professional gently scraping a scalpel across the surface layer of the skin to physically exfoliate and also remove baby peach fuzz hairs to produce a super smooth effect and increase the power of skin treatments applied afterwards.

Generally speaking it’s not usually safe to take an unguarded blade to your own skin as it can be difficult to gauge pressure and it would be awful to end up with a scar instead of fresh skin.

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Well, for those of us out here who don’t want to spend a million dollars on facial treatments at a spa, I’m here to offer another option: guarded brow shaping razors for at home dermaplaning.

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These are absolutely amazing in general and I use them for my brow shaping because my skin doesn’t do well with facial waxing. But the real awesome sauce about them is that they have a really sharp blade and they also have a micro guard on them that helps prevent the likelihood of cutting yourself accidentally.

After reading about dermaplaning and doing some research I decided to give it a whirl myself. The major benefit for me has been how much better my skin care products seem to be working. By using a technique like this to physically remove the surface layer of dead cells and make-up residue that seems to never come off fully under usual circumstances it really does promote better absorption of masks and moisturizers.

It’s typically not necessary to do an extreme exfoliation technique like this every day. I suggest trying it once a week, or even once a month if you have sensitive skin. My skin is pretty hardy so I used to do this once a week until my skin got better, sometimes twice a week if I’ve been doing a lot of modeling shoots and classes and been wearing more make-up than I prefer. Now I’m back to once a month. It makes me feel so much cleaner to be able to get my skin under control.

This is a truly fabulous new addition to my skin care routine and I totally suggest it to anyone interested, just be careful not to shave off an eyebrow!

 

Hotheads Hair Extensions, Makeover

I do hair extensions day in and day out, and I always love what I do, but sometimes I get a client in my chair who’s transformation still blows me away.

This client is a cancer survivor. Her hair had finally started to grow back in and she was visiting someone in California where she went to get her first ever set of hair extensions. They stylist ordered no where near enough hair, and then proceeded to remove much of the length from the hair, and then began cutting into her natural hair in an effort to blend in the additions.

We went through and removed all of her existing hair extensions, colored her hair to a more even base color, and then reapplied a very full head of Hotheads tape in hair extensions that we ordered just for her.

The end result is that you can’t even tell she has extensions! She was really happy with the end look and that made me feel all warm and fuzzy inside. This is why I do what I do.

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Facial Scrubs for Body Scrubs

While I was at the New York International Beauty Show (#IBSNY2016 if you want to search the Instagram tags), I made several interesting purchases, along with things from my Sephora haul last month.

 

I’ve already got combination skin so I know that heavily moisturizing facial scrubs tend to trigger acne for me. Since I still wanted to try stuff out I decided I’d use them as body scrubs instead. This is actually one of my favorite uses when I buy or receive products that aren’t quite a perfect fit for me.

 

First up was Rebels Refinery Advanced Clear Skin Facial Scrub which was absolutely awesome and comes from a very cool company with the most amazing smelling Moisturizing Beard Oil that I’ve ever smelled. This scrub had a really nice gritty texture and made me feel super clean, but it’s definitely designed for men’s skin and to pair with a lighter moisturizer than what I use (and probably not use make-up with either). I did notice that my skin was super smooth, and when used as a body scrub all over I had no ingrown hair issues, razor burn, or even a need to use body lotion. For someone with dryer skin, or as a body scrub I rate this as one of the best I’ve used, but for my face it’s a waste.

 

Second I tried my luck with Ole Henriksen Walnut Complexion Scrub which had similar issues. Absolutely wonderful as a combination body scrub body wash but not really working for my face. Great texture, and decent lather when mixed with water, nice smell.

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Hopefully the next set of things I get my hands on prove to be a better fit for my skin type as we approach warmer weather again. Get stoked!

 

Got any recommendations you think I should check out? Leave them in the comments section and I’ll be sure to take a look.

Not Always a Win

Not everything I buy to try is a product I’m destined to love forever.

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Recently, in my Sephora haul, I purchased Glam Glow Super Mud to try. My good friend and former assistant, Vanessa who works at the Springfield Town Center Sephora location, assured me I would love it. While I acknowledge it is a beauty junkie favorite, and it did great things for my skin, I just can’t get past the scent.

 

It contains several herbal extracts, like licorice, which give it a distinct smell that ends up being extremely reminiscent of Jagermeister. I just can’t handle it.

 

This is a bit of a loss because my skin does feel incredibly refreshed and clean. The goal of using it tonight was to make up for three days of chain-smoking in my car traveling to teach hair extension classes out of town. It worked amazingly so I’m disappointed a bit, but I’m planning on gifting it to a current staff member who really enjoys Jager.

Cold Weather Hair Tips

woman-wearing-winter-hat-snowThe weather changes with each season, why would you expect the same routine to work year round? You may need to add, remove, or completely change the products and tools you use. Here’s some points to get you started:

Use More Leave-Ins

The weather is harsh and the cold can be detrimental by hiding how humid or dry the air is. Trust me, you need the extra love, especially if you’re blowdrying more often to avoid leaving with wet hair.

Use Softer Hold Products

Gels and mouses that hold firmly will dry feeling too stiff in cold weather, so go for a lighter hold when choosing products for fall and winter months. You can always tease or add a finishing spray.

Be Wary of Protein Heavy Products

Yes, usually it’s thought of as a good thing, but it may not be necessary to add extra proteins to the hair. Normally a product that is protein rich will protect damaged hair, but if there is no damage they can build-up and may make hair dull and brittle. Avoid these unless your hair is actually damaged. Cold weather is not forgiving to brittle hair.

Use More Conditioner

Get into the routine of using extra conditioner to counteract damaging cold weather. Simple. Use more, rinse thoroughly.

Seal With Oil or Silicone

Jojoba and almond oils will add shine, and coconut oil and shea butter are perfect for coarser hair types. Silicone also works well as a moisture barrier to keep your hair soft.

Seasonal Makeover, Autumn 2013, Part 2

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For this client we wanted to do something a bit more subtle. With a family wedding just a few weeks away we wanted something that would feel brighter and richer without being so different that roots would be visible in pictures from the event.

We started by taking a look at her natural hair. She had no coloring services on her hair so we used the sun lightened ends of her hair as our target colors for her highlights. Her hair tends to take on a golden/cinnamon color so we applied a slightly redder tone on the highlights throughout the sides and a more golden toned color for the highlights through the crown area.

The color result was augmented by slight changes to her hair cut as well. By adding more layers, especially at the front, we were able freshen the layers framing her face and show off our new color better.

The only styling product used on her hair was “It’s a 10” leave-in conditioner. Her hair was blowdried out with a round brush and then touched up with a flat iron for

additional smoothing and control shaping.

Hope this was a fun inspiration for some of you to show that makeovers don’t have to be big to fun. Enjoy the weather!

Is Eye Shadow Primer Worth It?

lThe short answer? Yes, it is!

 The long answer? Definitely yes. Primer allows colored eyeshadows to really pop without having to layer on (read: waste) tons of product. It usually goes on smoother and stays on better as a result. End result? Totally worth it.

If you want you insanely too bright, covers way too much to be reasonable, really red eye shadow to stay bright over an extended photo shoot then you definitely need primer. (I’m allowed to say this is crazy, it’s my own work.)

Primer prevents darkness under eyes or on eyelids from interfering with the pigment of the eye shadow. This can be enough of a benefit on it’s own, but it gets better. Some companies are starting to work on eye shadow primers with ingredients that work like eye creams and actually make your skin healthier. Fantastic! Minimizes my routine and I love it.

Talking Points With Your Stylist: Fusion Hair Extensions

Screen Shot 2013-03-12 at 12.02.48 PMAre fusion hair extensions the right choice for you?

Fusion hair extensions use heat-bonded protein to fuse small sections of hair extensions to your existing hair. The result is seamless blending of extensions into your current hair.

Fusion extensions are great for both thick and fine hair, adding just color, thickening, lengthening, and chemical-free highlights.

Fusions extensions aren’t encouraged for heavily processed hair, very short hair, or un-relaxed ethnic hair.

There are a lot of different companies out there, so stylists have a lot to choose from to ensure a good texture match.

Taking Care of Your Hair Extensions

Screen Shot 2013-02-10 at 9.39.17 PMCleansing/Conditioning

            Brush your hair with a detangling brush. Use the shampoo recommended by your stylist. Gently, from the scalp to the ends, massage the shampoo in a downward motion and repeat if necessary. Only use sulfate free conditioner and apply from mid length to ends.

Styling/Drying

Always dry your hair using a low to moderate heat setting on your hair dryer. Style as desired using the recommended hair products from your stylist. Remember to keep all heated styling tools away from the bonds. When using blow dryers, flat irons or curling irons, use the appropriate protective serum to protect against thermal damage and add control and shine.

Sleeping

Never sleep when your hair is still wet. Gently gather your hair on top of your head with a scrunchie. A loose braid will also help prevent tangling and matting at night.

Swimming

Before swimming, mist hair with a leave in conditioner or apply a shine serum from the ends of your hair to mid-length. Do not apply directly to the scalp. Loosely braid your hair since chemicals and salt water may compromise the integrity of the bonds. Follow the advise of your stylist for post-swimming hair care.

Removal

Do not remove your hair extensions by yourself! You might damage your real hair. Your extensions stylist is trained in the steps to properly remove your hair as to best preserve the best condition of your natural hair, and not impede the next extension process.

Why Over Washing You Hair Is A Problem

dreamstime_11243930.jpg-washing-hair           Hair is naturally dry on its own and relies on oil from the scalp to keep it supple and enhance elasticity. Over washing your hair can actually strip your hair of its essential moisture.

            How often is too often, though? It varies from person to person. Ask your stylist. Some factors include:

            -Hair thickness

-Activity level and exercise

-Products used

-Air-drying vs blowouts, curly vs straight

-Chemical processes

As a general rule, hair should be shampooed only when it’s dirty. This results in less frizz and can save you from going through conditioner at an alarming rate. There are lots of “non shampoo” cleansers out there if you simply must wash every day. My favorites: Kerastase Chroma Sensitive, WEN, and Deva Curl No-Poo. Otherwise, washing with regular shampoo about twice a week is good pretty standard for most hair types while some hair thrives being washed only bi-weekly.