Sunday, November 23, 2008

Beauty Tips for All Maintenance Levels

(ARA) While the beauty routine of some women consists of little more than a hairbrush and moisturizer, others spend hours in front of the mirror mastering the latest beauty trends. But no matter how high- or low-maintenance you may be, the right beauty tricks will have you looking your best in no time.

Celebrity makeup artist BJ Gillian and hairstylist to the stars Brett Freedman share some of their beauty tips for everyone from women with little time for beauty, to those prepping for a night out on the town.

Low -- In a time crunch:

* Tinted moisturizers with SPF and gradual self-tanners not only protect you from the sun, but also add color to the skin. “I like the new Olay Definity Color Recapture, which also has anti-aging properties,” says Gillian.

* For wash-and-wear hairstyles, get a good haircut with layers to keep hair from being weighed down, says Freedman. “Try Pantene Pro-V Volume Root Lifter Spray to wake up your roots and Pantene Pro-V Volume Mousse all over to give hair a gorgeous amp up,” he says. “My tip: Less is more. Don’t bog hair down with product.”

Medium-- Easy beauty tricks with maximum impact:

* Use your eye color to determine what shades of shadow to use. Blue eyes work best with brown and sea green colors, while green eyes pop with plum and violet shadow colors. Brown-eyed gals can wear any color.

* To easily fake a chic look, try combining sleek, pulled back hair or a tousled bun with a vivid or smoky eye.

High -- Heading out for a night on the town:

* Women who prefer liquid or powder foundations should avoid moisturizer and find the right kind of makeup suitable for their skin, says Gillian. For example, oily skin needs an oil-free foundation and dry skin will benefit from a moisturizing foundation or tinted moisturizer.

* Big-night-out hair requires an intense-hold hairspray. “I recommend Pantene Pro-V Sheer Volume Hairspray with Maximum Hold, not only after styling, but before using any hot tools like curling irons or hot rollers,” says Freedman. “Spray a small amount on each section before curling. It makes a huge difference.”

No matter how complicated you make your beauty routine, keep these tips in mind to help keep your skin and hair looking their best.

For more great tips and suggestions, sign up for our free ezine, BeautyRemarks at

Friday, November 21, 2008

The ‘Scent-sual’ Subtleties of Finding a Fragrance Gift

Tech toys, gift cards and trendy attire will likely be headline-grabbing gifts of choice again this holiday season, as they have been for the past few years. But one classic gift has consistently been popular with both gift givers and receivers for millennia – perfume.

“It’s timeless, it’s classic and it’s appropriate for virtually everyone on your holiday shopping list,” says Vanita Sabnani, vice president of marketing for Puig Beauty USA, purveyors of fine fragrances. “Perfume is consistently on the list of items most often given as holiday gifts. And even though perfume has been around for thousands of years, fragrances have evolved to meet our modern concepts of beauty and social consciousness.”

Contemporary gift-givers have far more choices than the ancient people who began giving perfume as a gift about 3,500 years ago. Since perfume is a highly personal gift that will be worn on the skin, it’s important to put some thought into the selection process. Here is some “scent-sable” advice for choosing perfumes for everyone on your holiday list:

Look for Gifts that Do More

For many people, social consciousness is an important part of giving and receiving a gift. Americans love gifts that both please the recipient and give something back to the community. When you’re scent-shopping, look for fragrances that fit the recipient’s personality and will give her (or him) something to feel good about.

For example, the new fragrance Blue Seduction for Women by Antonio Banderas offers seductive floral fragrance and the opportunity to support a worthy cause. Throughout the holidays, Antonio Banderas Seductive Fragrances will donate $1 to Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS for every Blue Seduction for Women gift set sold. The nonprofit organization supports social service programs that provide treatment and services for people affected by HIV and AIDS. Visit to learn more

Learn the Basics

There are six basic categories of perfume, and within those categories it’s possible to find a fragrance that will appeal to virtually any personality and preference. Categories include floral, oriental, woody, citrus, green and water (sometimes called “oceanic”). Each perfume has a unique profile that incorporates multiple scents to make up its overall fragrance.

Often, a perfume will draw aromas from more than one category; Blue Seduction for Women blends top notes (the initial scent you encounter when you first sniff) of violet leaves and water-based fruits and heart (the scents you detect on subsequent sniffs) of rose, jasmine and raspberry.

You’ll need to do a little “leg work” to learn the personality and preferences of the person you’ll be gifting with a fragrance. For example, if she’s traditional, feminine and romantic, a floral perfume might suit her personality. If he’s an outdoors guy who likes sports, a green or woody scent might best compliment his athleticism.  For your significant other, an exotic oriental can convey your passion and depth of feeling.

Take Your Time

“The fragrance an individual wears is a very personal statement of who she is,” Ms. Sabnani says. “The scent should be chosen to match that individual’s personality, and not based on the preferences of the gift-giver or the trend of the moment.”

Once you have an idea of the type of fragrance right for the perfume-lover on your holiday list, the best way to make a selection is to hit the stores and sample, sniff and test. Fragrance counter sales people are often versed in the finer points of the perfumes for sale in their department. Ask for their help in identifying perfumes that fit into the basic category in which you’re interested.

Always test a perfume on a paper test strip – usually available at the fragrance counter. Never test it on your own skin. If you test multiple scents on your own skin, you’ll quickly find them competing with each other and you won’t be able to really discern the individual aroma of each. Also, because everyone’s body chemistry is different, how the scent smells on your skin is not necessarily how it will smell on someone else.

“Perfume has been a cherished gift for hundreds of years and it’s likely to remain a favorite for thoughtful gift-givers,” says Ms. Sabnani. “With a little knowledge and inspiration, it’s possible to find scents that will please everyone on your holiday shopping list.”

To learn more about PUIG USA’s Blue Seduction for Women by Antonio Banderas, go to

Courtesy of ARAcontent

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Put Your Best Face Forward This Fall

(ARA) – Bathing suits will soon be packed away for another year, but beauty doesn’t take a holiday when summer winds down. Women everywhere will need to modify their daily beauty routines to keep pace with autumn’s changing demands, and the rapid approach of the holiday season.

Your fall beauty regimen should focus on caring for the basics of beauty – skin, smile and hair. Here are some tips to ensure you enter the cooler months looking your best.

Fall Skin Care

Fall is one of the most demanding seasons for your skin. Not only does bright sunshine persist in many areas of the country, the air turns dry and cool – conditions which can add up to damage and drying.

* Remember to moisturize daily, and consider replacing the lotion or gel-based moisturizer you used over the summer months with a cream-based product. Cream-based moisturizers do a better job of locking moisture into the skin.

* You’ll still need sunscreen, especially if you spend a lot of time outdoors, but you can probably pack away the 50 SPF cream until next summer. Go with a lighter SPF. Many makeup lines now offer foundations that include UV protection.

* Stay hydrated. Make sure you get your recommended eight, 8-ounce glasses of water per day. If you live in a particularly dry climate, consider sleeping with a humidifier in your room. Not only will it help your skin, the humidifier can help relieve some respiratory symptoms brought on by dry weather.

Something to Smile About

Your smile is often the first impression someone has about you. “It’s easy to overlook the importance of taking care of your smile, especially as schedules get busier in the fall,” says Dr. Nancy Rosen, a New York City-based dentist whose clients include business executives, fashionistas and politicians.

* Before the holidays hit and you have time for little else other than shopping and entertaining, schedule a checkup with your dentist.

* White teeth can turn a nice smile into a show-stopper. Consider incorporating a teeth whitener into your everyday beauty routine. Crest Whitestrips Daily Whitening Plus Tartar Protection provides five-minute once a day whitening and protection from tartar and daily stain build-up. “These strips not only provide tartar protection, they’re a great way to whiten teeth daily.” Rosen says. “The strips are gentle enough to use every day, even for people who are sensitive to whitening.” They are available anywhere Crest products are sold; or log on to for more information.

* The cool, dry air and crisp breezes of fall can lead to chapped lips. Use lip balm that contains UV protection to prevent chapped or sunburned lips. Avoid petroleum-based balms, as evidence has shown that petroleum can actually dry out your lips.

Have a Good Hair Day

The flagrant abuse you subjected your hair to all summer comes home to roost in the fall. Autumn is a great time to recover from the effects bright sun and pool chemicals had on your hair.

* Update your cut. It’s a new season and a good time for a fresh start. Look for a cut that complements your face, is fashionable yet easy to care for – a style that will serve you well through the increased busy-ness of the fall and holiday season.

* Treat yourself to a deep-conditioning session at the salon to help repair sun and chlorine damage. Afterward, use a light conditioner or shampoo/conditioner combination every time you wash your hair.

With a few simple enhancements to your daily routine, you can ensure your beauty regimen doesn’t fall behind this autumn.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Sarah Coventry Closes Doors Again

Effective October 31, Direct Sales Jewelry icon, Sarah Coventry has once again closed it's doors, leaving thousands of consultants without a company.

The saddest part of the company's on again, off again history is that January would have been a 60th anniversary.

So what's a fashionista to do?

Many consultants are looking to join other companies, and South Main Designs is quickly becoming a hot spot for Sarah Coventry Style Consultants.

With comparable hostess and benefit programs, as well as a comprehensive collection of Fashion accessories and a men's collection, the variety at South Main Designs is unparalleled by other direct sales jewelry companies in the US.

For more information on South Main Designs, and for great discounts on your favorite products, sign up for our free ezine, Beauty ReMarks today.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Holiday Shopping Tips for Saving Time and Money

(ARA) - The holiday season is a time for family, friends, giving, eating and festivities. It should not be centered on stress, anxiety and debt. Here are some tips for getting organized early, saving money and staying sane in preparation for buying gifts for those you love this year.

Make your list and check it twice.

Creating a list of who you need to buy gifts for this year is an essential first step in the gift-giving process. In order to find the perfect gift for each person on your list, make notes about his or her hobbies, passions, upcoming travel plans -- anything to help add that personal touch. Those few extra moments of individualizing your list will make a big difference in your final gift-purchasing decisions.

Prepare a budget.  

Avoiding over-spending can be overwhelming, but getting a handle on your budget will help you to avoid the post-holiday credit blues. First, come up with an overall budget that you want to be sure not to exceed this holiday season. Assuming you have done this, use that list to create a general spending limit for each person. Using your overall budget as a guideline as you go will help to ensure you do not go overboard spending cash this holiday season.

Start early.

Before the haze of the holiday sets in and the impulse to purchase consumes you, start your shopping now. Nothing causes more anxiety than scrambling to buy last-minute gifts. Many retailers entice buyers to start early by offering pre-holiday sales and discounts. Be sure to take advantage of these sales!

Research online.

Now that you have your holiday shopping blueprint, you must do your homework before making the final purchases. Shopping online provides you with the tools to “visit” every store imaginable with the click of your mouse. Compare and contrast prices, checking your budgeting sheet as you go. There is always a deal out there to be had in the cyber world. The BeautyReMarks e-zine is loaded with great deals and articles to make it even easier.

Use coupons.

Online couponing sites make saving extra cash easy by offering free shipping and percentages off your final purchase. ( allows visitors to search by store or by category, is updated throughout the day and provides deals from over 1200 merchants. You will be amazed at the amount of money you can save by shopping from the comfort of your own home. Save time, gas money and your sanity!

Reward yourself.

With all of the stress and money you save by organizing, budgeting, starting early and scoring deals online, you might as well reward yourself on your gift-giving efforts. Use some of the extra money you save this year and treat yourself.

Courtesy of ARAcontent

Monday, October 27, 2008

Earn Your Shopping Black Belt on Black Friday

(ARA) – Shopping the sales is a great way to save money this holiday season. Everyone knows the best sales are found on Black Friday, the day after Thanksgiving, when malls are packed with people finding great gifts at even greater prices. How do you make the most out of the bargain-hunter dream day?

“During this tight economy, getting that awesome gift is possible with a little creativity and preparation,” says Steve Kemble, "America’s Sassiest Lifestyle Guru" and General Growth Properties  gift-giving expert. “The hustle and bustle of the malls on Black Friday is exciting, but to make sure your shopping is a success, I have a few suggestions.”

Kemble, a nationally recognized professional event planner who has appeared on countless TV and radio programs, offers these high-impact, low-stress shopping tips for a winning Black Friday:

1) Develop a Shopping Budget and Strategy

First and foremost determine how much you can afford to spend on your holiday gifts -- especially in the wake of current economic challenges. Be smart and realistic -- it’s not how much you spend, but the thought behind the gift that’s important. Also, now is the perfect time to discretely start asking friends and relatives what they want for the holidays. Once you determine which gifts you need, you can decide what stores to tackle on Black Friday. Plan your day around getting those must-haves before they run out. If needed, you can always plan a second trip to the mall for more common gifts that are likely to remain in stock for a longer period of time. GGP malls are a great one-stop shop for all things holiday.  

Once you know what stores you want to visit, go online and review a layout of the mall to determine where to shop and locate the best place to park. Think about whether you are going to take trips to your vehicle to drop off packages. Feel like spoiling yourself a little? Many malls offer valet parking during the holidays, so you might consider this option as well.

2) Comparison Shop

In order to streamline your shopping experience, start a list of the items you need to purchase. Watch for ads in the newspaper and on television at least two weeks prior to Black Friday. GGP malls are a great one-stop shop for all things holiday and offer great retail offers and fun holiday events on Black Friday. Visit for more event information.

3) Eat, Drink and Shop Happy

It is important to stay hydrated and eat a balanced meal while shopping. After all, you need your energy! Successful shoppers know that they need to start their day with a nutritious breakfast. Pack some bottles of water and small snack items to take with you on your trip and you’re off and running. Additionally, it's always fun to plan for a wonderful lunch with family and friends during your day of shopping. Consider eating a little earlier or later than the traditional noon hour. While others are eating you can be scooping up all the sale items.

4) Partner Up for Festive Fun

For those who need a little shopping advice .... form your own Black Friday shopping team. Recruit friends and family members to provide the extra hands you need to get the best deals. And award your own “black belt” to those who successfully help you reach your goals. At the end of the day you can treat them to a GGP Mall Gift Card for all their help.

5) Think About You Too

Don't hesitate to think about one item you have always wanted for yourself while you are shopping. Adding a certain something just for you makes the day fun. We have all been guilty of going shopping and buying more for ourselves than for others. If you train yourself to know that you are going to get one fabulous gift for yourself, you'll begin to cut back on that habit.

Follow these helpful tips, and you will certainly be on your way to attaining your black belt in shopping this holiday season.

For more tips, deals and news on your favorite fashion and beauty items, sign up for our free ezine, BeautyReMarks today

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Reuse and Rejoice: Eco-chic Gift Ideas that Give Back

(ARA) – The holidays are a time of celebration, where goodwill is spread and gifts are exchanged with loved ones. As more people go green and give back in all aspects of their lives, it’s no surprise that great gifts now embrace this concept. This year, give something different that is sure to make everyone smile.

Here are some easy and affordable eco-chic gift ideas:

1) Gifts that help

The holidays are all about the feeling of giving back, and what better way to show you care than to give a gift that was made under fair practices? Naturally inspired bath and body products that don’t test on animals and contain ingredients that were obtained through fair Community Trade practices are great gift ideas that the recipient is sure to enjoy and feel good about.

The Body Shop is a company that practices all of these ideals. Ingredients are not tested on animals and they just celebrated 21 years of Community Trade relationships, where small community farmers and businesses in some of the poorest areas across the world have access to a fair wage earned in fair work conditions. Their pioneering program has benefitted over 25,000 people in more than 20 countries. Here are some feel-good gifts from The Body Shop that will delight the senses during this magical time of year:

* The brand new Warm Amber scent range features natural Community Trade ingredients including cocoa and shea butter from Ghana, honey from Zambia, and sesame oil from Nicaragua. Also, the Cranberry body range offers a festive and fruity scent that is classic to the holiday season, and Vanilla Spice is a delicious range with notes of orange, cinnamon and ginger. All of these fabulous scent ranges are infused into a variety of products such as bath crystals, body shimmers and lip balms. Who wouldn’t want to find them in their stocking?

* The limited edition Sparkle Seduction collection is inspired from this winter’s key look: natural glamour with an edgy twist. Products feature Community Trade marula oil from a women’s co-op in Namibia, an ingredient that moisturizes and conditions skin. You can look and feel your best whether at the office during the day or out on the town celebrating the season.

* Men’s Bath and Body: Your favorite guy is sure to appreciate a gift featuring products made specifically for him. The Maca Root range for men energizes skin and conditions while protecting against irritation caused by daily shaving.

2) Reuse, rejoice, recycle.

Whether you are looking for the perfect package to give your perfect gift, or want to reuse what you’ve been given, don’t put bags and bows in the trash, reuse it! Here are some smart holiday ideas:

* Recycle packaging containers -- bath containers are often high quality and can be used again after you have enjoyed them. The Body Shop creates packaging with the intention for creative reuse. For example, your body butter containers are perfect to house your favorite jewelry in.

* Gift wrap -- use old posters, colorful bags, holiday sections of the paper, old holiday cards or even colorful clothing that you don’t wear any longer. Remember to save gifted ribbons and bows for future use.

* Promote reuse -- shop antique stores for unique gifts you’ll not likely find anywhere else. Retro items can be a great hit, and bring back memories of the past.

3) Homemade gift items.

Creating your own gift is somewhat of a lost art. Not only is a homemade gift one-of-a-kind, it also can be highly personalized and is likely to be remembered much longer after the tree comes down. Here are some ideas:

* Foods: From sweets to sauces, creating a favorite food for a loved one is an easy way to send holiday love.

* Holiday Decor: There’s a reason the homemade holiday ornament you gave your mother is still hung up 20 years later, it’s a gift that means something.

* Crafts: Consider creating something clever, personal and useful. For example, clean out your used The Body Shop bath containers and decorate with collage, beads and other items to make a personalized storage container.

Not very crafty? Just create a homemade card to go along with your purchased gift. Write out a nice note to the recipient telling them your appreciation for them in your life, especially during the holidays.

This year, get into the true spirit of the season and give a gift that gives back with an eco-friendly flare. Sign up for our Free ezine Beauty Remarks for all the up-to-the-minute discounts and deals on your favorite products.