Beauty Pick: Clarins Toning Lotion with Camomile

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Every time I travel, I make it a point to buy two things ‘duty free’. 1. A lipstick and 2. A skin product. The reason why I do this is because for years, I have tried to maintain my skin so as just to wear lipstick and a little mascara. It’s been quite a journey considering I have extremely sensitive skin. I like to try new products but still continue to purchase the ones I think do the best job for my skin depending on the season and weather.

While in Barcelona last month, I picked up this AMAZING toner by Clarins. I never gave much thought to toners before, but this is definitely one for the books. It removes the impurities that your cleanser can’t get rid of. It leaves your skin feeling smooth and smelling great! And because it’s alcohol-free, it doesn’t make your skin dry. I’m really happy about finding this toner! (See smile below)

Try it and tell me what you think!

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Green with envy? NOT.

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Nars have released a “modern and unique” duo eyeshadow, under the name of “Tropical princess” featuring a “neon lemon lime” and an “icy lavender”. I quite like the icy lavender! I read once that it was the most flattering shade of eye shadow for all eye shapes and colours- like a universal “go-to” colour. I think pastels generally make the eyes pop. But the lime green?! I don’t care what anyone says but I wouldn’t be caught dead wearing green eye shadow- let alone lime green! Not unless I wanted to look like Effie bloody Trinket.

But don’t worry Nars, I think people might still cough up $35 for this bi-polar shade, because check this out (click here) – it’s a tutorial on how to cover a red pimple with green eye shadow. You’re welcome!

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Are you Bikini Ready?

It’s May, and that means bikini season is almost around the corner. You’ve already spent hours on the Victoria’s Secret website trying to decide whether you’re going to strut some fringe or opt for flounce! You want to be daring and try those Dolce & Gabbana high-waisted floral bikini bottoms without looking like a complete pollock, but you also want to keep it Côte d’Azur chic in that gorgeous white one piece with the mesh cutouts. Either way, one thing’s for sure: you want to look like an ultimate beach babe. Here are a few guidelines I put together so you can hit the beach with a splash!

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First and foremost, you’re going to have to “drop it like a squat”. Try the 30-day squat challenge for the perfect beach bum. Maybe throw in some lunges too! I’m think 3 sets of 12, twice a day, for those buns of steel. Come on, it’s not asking too much- is it? 

Substitute that morning coffee you think you can’t go without, for a nutrient-packed green smoothie. My green juice consists of celery, apples, cucumbers, kale, ginger, and parsley. My aunt has thick beautiful hair, and she is absolutely convinced its because of the ridiculous amounts of tabbouleh she has had over the years. Which brings me to my next point… 

Book an appointment at your hair salon for a treatment session. I have very fine hair and it tends to get really dry in the cold winter months, especially in Amman. I like to use Redken’sIntense Renewal Super Moisturizing Mask” to rejuvenate my highlights and leave my hair looking shiny. 

Invest in a body scrub for silky smooth skin. Exfoliating will get rid of dark spots and those pesky ingrown hairs! My favourite is Kiehl’s gently exfoliating grapefruit body scrub. It’s not too harsh on the skin and leaves my skin feeling as smooth as a baby’s bottom. Follow up with a gentle moisturiser to put that sports illustrated cover girl to shame!

This is a no brainer: Book a mani/pedi. 

Increase your water intake and stay hydrated. I find that no matter how much water I drink, it’s never enough. Water does wonders for your skin and body. 

Slather on the sunblock! With an SPF of at least 30. I promise that you’ll tan gradually and safely. Damage from the sun is irrerversible, and sunblock protects you from harsh sun rays that leave you with sunspots and wrinkles. 

And lastly, be happy. Nothing is sexier than a beaming smile. 

 

Ciaté: Corrupted Neon Manicure Set

 

Corrupted-Neon-Manicure-Pack-Shot-NIGHT-2-BDWelcome to the polish that never sleeps! This collection brings you the zestiest matte neon shades. Style your look by sprinkling glitter over wet polish for a sizzling finish and as the sun sets, light up the night with the afterglow top coat. With clear-on application, this clever polish soaks up the daylight and continues to glow in the dark.

Hala Ajam sits down with Aya Jammal

Hala Ajam featured Editor-in-Chief of U Magazine Lebanon Aya Jammal on her website as this month’s guest blogger! The interview is below, but to view the full article please click here. The pretty editor shares the best advice she’s ever been given, what motivates her and why she’d rather be in New York right now.

image1What inspired you to do what you are doing today?
Fashion’s ability to reflect, inspire and most importantly bring out one’s confidence.

Share with us the best piece of advice ever given to you
“Be yourself!” – something my mother always says to me.

What motivates you?
Passion. I do what I love after all, and that’s the greatest blessing.

Mistakes are…
Lessons in disguise.

What’s the biggest mistake you made starting out?
Trying to do everything myself. Delegation is an acquired talent that took me a long while to master. Thankfully, I have a wonderful team who supports me and whom I can trust.

Define a success.
Someone with the ability to induce positive change, no matter how big or small.

Tell us a common misconception that people have about what you do.
That it’s easy! The fashion world is beautiful indeed; but beneath the surface, it’s tough, fast-paced, competitive and ever-changing. You really have to have a combination of passion, discipline and determination to be able to survive in this world.

What are three things most people don’t know about you?
That I’m sensitive, though I don’t show it to most. I don’t whatsoever enjoy being in the spotlight, though my job requires me to be at times. And between the two of us, I play Fashion Police in my head all the time; sometimes I’m “good cop,” but mostly I’m ruthless.

If you could be anywhere in the world right now, where would it be? Why?
New York. Fashion Week just kicked off there!

Hey Honey.

marc-jacobs-honeyI’m a sucker for floral fragrances and this Marc Jacobs number will end my summer with a bang. It’s got a floral base with splashes of green pear and juicy mandarin. And of course, to get that fluffy golden warmth, its drizzled with honey, vanilla, and smooth woods. Delicious!

Marc Jacobs Beauty Line

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Marc Jacobs is launching his own beauty line, set to be in stores on August 9th. The 122-piece collection will not include any nude tones, because “that’s just lazy,” Jacobs has admitted. The packaging is inspired by a glossy black lacquered table he owns, and the product names are inspired by “everything” apparently including Jacobs’ tattoos and his favourite movies. We’re looking forward to checking out this bright and fun collection!

Striped & Spotted’s best kept beauty secrets!

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I wrote an article for www.fustany.com last month and I wanted to share it with my followers. I scoured the web to find you the best-kept beauty and fashion secrets out there! Well, some of them are hand-me-down tips from my mum, because mummy does know best! Check them out.

  • “Bat Those Eyelashes Girl!” For thicker and fuller lashes, use a little bit of talcum powder on them before applying your mascara. The powder will help give your lashes some volume. My mum taught me this trick a few years back and it’s one of the oldest in the book. Try it!

  • “Break in Those Brand New Pumps!” I’ve always taken it as a rule of thumb to never wear a pair of brand new shoes to an event that will have me standing up all night; I always end up in a bad mood and with a few blisters to top it off.  My mum once told me that the best way to break in a pair of shoes is to wear them with sports socks and walk around in them for an hour or so (at home).  It always does the trick because they feel comfier and roomier just in time for your big event.

  • “Have You Grown a Few Inches?” I’m quite petite and sometimes I like to go in flats. On these rare occasions however, I always pull my hair up in a high bun. I use a bun ring to add a few inches to my height; it always seems to work.

  • “Rise and Shine” If you didn’t get enough sleep last night, don’t be afraid to go for a bright lip. It’ll draw attention away from your eyes, which are a dead giveaway that you’ve had a rough night. If you use eye liner, then opt for a navy instead of a black to brighten up the whites of your eyes.

  • “No More Stains!” The best way to get those measly deodorant marks off your tops is to use a pair of nylon stockings. Honestly! Bundle up a pair of nylon stockings and gently rub the deodorant mark away. Thank me later.

  • “Rain Rain Go Away!” Have any of you made the mistake of wearing your suede Isabel Marant sneakers out on a cloudy day? Once it begins to rain, there’s no escape! Those rain spots are an absolute nuisance on suede. Don’t worry, I have a trick. Use an emery board or nail file to very gently rub the stain using a back and forth motion. Don’t be too harsh though! This works on most suede stains.

  • “Slip and Slide!” One of my biggest closet problems is keeping my silk and satin tops on the hangers without having them slip and slide off. Ideally, velvet hangers work like a charm. However, if you use metal or plastic hangers, wrap a rubber band on either side of the hanger to keep your top in place. Works wonders!

  • “One Mani Too Many!” If you’re suffering from a case of yellowing nails because of nail polish staining, then get yourself to the kitchen STAT! After you buff your unpolished nails, soak your fingertips in lemon juice mixed with a spoon of baking soda. Repeat this every other day until your nails improve. Ta daaa!

In my opinion the best tip I can give you is to smile, oh – and listen to your mother.

Suqqu Face Stretch Mask.

I know I’ve been totally MIA, but we’re just loving white snowy London. It is absolutely freezing and keeping my face moisturised was becoming a problem. I popped down to Selfridges and picked up this AMAZING skin mask; it’s called the Suqqu Face Stretch Mask. It’s a 3-D stretch mask that you apply to your entire face. The mask is drenched in serum which helps to nourish and moisturise your face, leaving your skin tightened but equally as supple. Each sheet contains 33ml of rich serum. Just use it once a week when you feel like your skin needs some glow. Try it and let me know what you think. I think it’s exclusive to Selfridges. 

However, I would suggest moisturising your face and using your eye cream every time you leave the house when temperatures drop; not just in the morning before you head out. 

No more caviar nails! Say hello to the leather effect.

Yup! Nails Inc. has done it again. Check out this super cool leather effect nail polish that’s sure to make a fierce statement. Alexa Chung tweeted a picture of her leather nails before the product was released exclusively at Sephora stores worldwide and online from Nails Inc. It apparently sold out within seconds of release. It’s no wonder, we think these nails are SICK.

Nails Inc. Leather effect