Who knew SPF is the Fountain of Youth?

canstockphoto7925768 I am convinced aging is something we should welcome. The opportunity to share our mature years with our family and friends is certainly a blessing.  Nevertheless, not only do we want to be fit, we also want to look our best.  Feeling good about our appearance is important to many of us. So when a study comes out that helps us to do that, we are happy to learn about it.

In a recent study conducted at the University of Queensland in Brisbane, Australia with 903 adults below the age of 55 that regular use of sunscreen show no increase in skin aging.  In fact, the study showed that the adults who used sunscreen daily appeared 24 percent younger than those who did not use the sunscreen daily. Miracle? Maybe :), but I think many of us may consider using SPF protection going forward after hearing about these findings.  you can read more about the study by clicking this link. via Sunscreen – The New Fountain of Youth? | Advanced Dermatology Blog – Dermatologists in NY and NJ.

Below is the scoop on some of the best moisturizers with SPF.  Click on the link for details.spf_creams

  • Sunscreens are essential for skin care day in and day out, 365 days a year. If applied correctly (meaning liberally and reapplied as often as needed), they are the best anti-wrinkle product you can use. In order to make the Best Products list, a moisturizer with sunscreen must: Provide broad-spectrum sun protection and be rated SPF 15 or greater. Help skin fight sun damage. Increase healthy collagen production. Contain a mix of antioxidants, skin-repairing ingredients, and cell-communicating ingredients. Protect skin from environmental damage. Improve skin texture. Contain the appropriate ingredients for your skin type. Not be packaged in a jar via Best Moisturizers With Sunscreen: Beautypedia Skin Care Reviews.
  • When I first got into my SPF obsession (back in my undergrad years of college), I didn’t really feel the need to shell out money for the most expensive brands. I was happy perusing the drugstore aisles for a decent moisturizer. I also wasn’t aware how important having an SPF of 30 was. The best one I found was Aveeno Positively Radiant Daily Moisturizer in SPF 15 ($16.99) (although a SPF 30 one does exist and I recommend getting that one). via Renee Jacques: I Tried Seven Popular Sunscreens And Found The Best One.

I hope this is helpful 🙂

Are You An Exercising Beauty?

How many of you have thought of exercise as part of your beauty regimen? Yes the Ads are filled with suggestions to exercise as a way to lose pounds, but that’s not what I am referring to.  How about what the benefits could be if we thought of exercise as our beauty regimen because it reduces stress and helps our moods in terms of total well-being?  I believe that when you feel better you look better.  So, in future posts, HairBlues will share with you some suggestions for including various exercise techniques to reduce the stress in your day.  Other posts will explain why we want to have exercise in our lives as a part of our beauty regimen.

With that said, have you heard about Downward Facing Dog?  LOL

downward_facing_dogDownward Facing Dog is a Yoga position, which it turns out has many benefits as listed below. Make sure to check out the video by clicking the link at the end of this post.

♦ The pose is so good for many of the things that plague our society today: fatigue, back pain and stiffness from sitting all day

It wakes you up. Sophie Herbert cites B.S.K. Iyengar, the 94-year-old founder of Iyengar yoga, who says that Downward Dog is one of the best poses you can do when you’re fatigued. “He recommends at least a minute in the pose,” she says, “to bring back lost energy for runners after a hard race.” It works equally well, she adds, for those of us who are just tired from a long day at the office.

It eliminates stiffness and back pain. “I find it’s good for people who get pain in their shoulders and upper back,” says Herbert. “Practicing it with proper alignment can make your upper back more flexible and less likely to store so much tension.”

It builds bone density.  Postures line Downward Dog as well as more difficult arm balances that place weight on the arms and shoulders are great for building upper body strength and preserving bone density

It boosts circulation. Any pose where the heart is above the head is a good one for the circulatory system, because it encourages blood flow throughout the body. An active circulatory system helps flush toxins from our body, keep our immune system in tip-top shape, and helps regulate blood pressure.

If you have high blood pressure, talk to your doctor before attempting downward dog, as well. It’s a good check in with your body. Herbert says that yoga classes spend so much time in Downward Dog because it’s a good way to “take inventory” about how you’re feeling. “It stretches your arms, legs and back all at once, and you can take notice of what feels good and what you need to work on.” via Get 6 Amazing Benefits From Practicing Downward Dog: Flash: Self.com.

Check out the Video at the link below.

♦ The next time you peer into the bathroom mirror and notice any crow’s-feet, bunny lines or other facial wrinkles, you may want to consider busting into a downward-facing dog to slow down these signs of aging.

♦ According to Kimberly Fowler, owner of Yas Fitness Studios in Los Angeles, yoga in general is anti-aging as it helps with achieving flexibility and reducing stress. via Anti-Aging Yoga Poses: Can The Downward-Facing Dog Take Years Off Your Look? (VIDEO).

I hope this is helpful!   last_pic for downward post

“I Feel Bad About My Neck” – Remedies

red neck picThe late, very engaging, innovative, author and playwright, Nora Ephron, said it best, as you may remember from her book title, “I Feel Bad About My Neck”. Many of us spend our time looking for remedies to help us with aging faces. However, she taught us that even with those ‘miracle’ creams, our necks,it turns out, would be our ‘dead giveaway’.

How many of us are beginning to look closer (or not) at our necks?  As we age, it becomes visible that our necks seem to get little attention. That is until we notice that they are looking more weary than our faces.  Not too long ago, I received a request to find out what we can do about our necks.  Below are various suggestions I found on the Web, which I hope will help you in caring for this very delicate part of your body.  One suggestion is to not put perfume on our neck!  Also, avoid certain types of jewelry  in humid weather.  I never heard that, have you? Read on, to learn more.  Don’t forget to click on the links for more details.

Best Natural Skin Care Products for Tightening Neck Skin
Natural Skin Moisturizer to Tighten Neck Skin It is important to keep skin moisturized to plump up lines and wrinkles on neck and to firm sagging skin on neck. Apply moisturizer to keep the natural moisture and oils, which are responsible for the skin’s elasticity and integrity. Moisturizers help keep your skin smooth, supple, and moist; prevent neck wrinkles and tighten flabby skin on neck. Look for a light-weight daily moisturizer blended with natural and organically grown plant extracts like aloe vera, green tea or soy. These natural ingredients help keep the sagging neck skin looks smooth and firm. They can prevent imperfections such as wrinkles, sagging, age spots or thinning, etc. Apply moisturizer to the loose neck skin twice a day in upward strokes to encourage neck tightening and lifting of the loose neck skin. via Tighten Sagging Neck Skin: Best Natural Skin Care Products and Neck Firming Tips | Health Tips 2013.

geisha neckVitamin E Oil Honey Mask for Firming Sagging Neck

You can make use of natural skin tightening oils to firm loose sagging skin on neck. Take two tablespoons of milk and add a few drops of vitamin E oil and honey in to it. Apply this natural skin firming mask to the face and neck and leave it on for 20 minutes before rinsing off with warm water for neck tightening. Follow this up by applying a moisturizer. To firm up sagging neck skin, you need to use this homemade neck skin tightening mask every other week.

Do Neck Exercises for Neck Tightening

Performing facial exercises on a regular basis can help in firming the neck muscles and reducing the sagging skin on neck or turkey neck. Try the exercise below and click the link for other suggestions:
Stretch your chin up high and thrust it forward hard. At the same time, pull your head back gradually the farthest you possibly can until you feel a pull on the neck muscles. Repeat this turkey wattle neck firming exercise several times, forward and backward. You will feel the muscles of your chin and the front of your neck tightened. via Tighten Sagging Neck Skin: Best Natural Skin Care Products and Neck Firming Tips | Get a Natural Facelift without Surgery.

pink neckBest Neck Tightening Creams for 2013
As we get older our skin may become thinner, a little saggy, and we may even begin to see wrinkles and fine lines starting to appear. Usually we will notice these problems on our face. However, our neck and jaw line can also start to get these same signs, and it is important to find the right neck cream to help firm and tighten the neck area while reducing the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines. Using a wrinkle cream for you face may not work as well on your neck. via Best Neck Tightening Creams – Turkey Neck Firming Cream Reviews.

 Some of the best natural ingredients to look for when buying a night cream for neck tightening are: Cynergy TK, Manuka honey, Avocado extract, Shea butter, and special emollients for nighttime use.via Tighten
Sagging Neck Skin: Best Natural Skin Care Products and Neck Firming Tips  Health Tips 2013
Protecting your Skin even if you wear sunscreen daily, you should take a few more steps for protecting your skin besides using the right neck skin care products. Avoid make-up and perfume on the neck and be careful about the weather when you wear jewelry. Even silver and gold can leave black marks when worn for extended periods of time on humid days. When you know your skin will be exposed to a lot of moisture,opt for pearls, bends and enamel jewelry. via Aging Gracefully: Neck Skin Care Tips.

helpful neck picI hope this is helpful!

Face Rules & Beauty Secrets FYI

hairblues_secrets2  As a BabyBoomer,  (BB) I am often in conversation with other BB’s who are looking for ‘aging remedies’ LOL. But seriously, what are we to do?  Just give in?  Buy the latest and greatest product and expect a miracle to happen?  Well, it turns out that there are some suggestions, which do not cost a great deal of money, and are definitely worth trying.  Following are some ideas that I learned from a book a BB friend sent to me, which relate to face care.

Habits that will save your skin, which are fairly simple:

  • Making sure your hands are clean before you wash your face so you don’t transfer bacteria.
  • When you put cleanser on, massage it into your face and let it dissolve the impurities.
  • Use cotton to wipe away your cleanser  (instead of a cloth).  Someone once told me that it’s best to do this because face cloths and tissues are more rough to the skin.  Especially the eye area.
  • Mineral water will plump up your skin if you spritz your face after cleansing it,  and before you moisturize it. For up to 12 hours!
  • Toner does refresh your skin.  However, you should avoid alcohol-based toners. Choose witch hazel for oily and problem-prone skin, rose-water for dry skin, and chamomile water for normal and sensitive skin.
  • Facial scrubs do help to remove dead skin cells, they also leave skin firm and smooth.
    • Instead of using pads, create your own scrub:  Add sugar to your cleanser and massage it on your damp skin !  Try it once a week.

3 women with faces

In future posts, I will be covering some of the wonderful suggestions I found in this book, but if you’re eager to learn earlier, check out the book:  Face 100 makeup moves, by Carol Morley and Liz Wilde.

I hope this is helpful! 🙂

hair slave

hair slavery

appointment it,

perm it ,

curl it,

hat it

protect it,

gel it, sell it,

braid it,

unbald it,

buzz it,

bald it,

lace wig it,

unfrizz it

every six-week it,

straighten it,

texturize it,

natural it,

French roll it,

dry it then un-dry it

adorn it,

Biotin it,

bonnet it,

hairnet it,

volume it,

French braid it.

beauty parlor it,

kink it,

dye it,

ribbon it

brush it,

scarf it,

condition it,

cut it,

dermatologist it,

Bosley it,

weave it,

freshen it,

shampoo it,

transplant it,

rogaine it,

minoxidil it,

grow it….

Good genes it!

Are you a slave to your hair?

Remnants of old hairdos & makeup

beauty_remnants Is beauty truly only skin deep?

Are these things that are happening essentially ordained?

gifts … of a well (or not well) – lived long life …
Are we forcing ourselves to bear chains to a time
that essentially has already passed?

Never to return again.

Or, might it be that as we age, we simply refuse to accept what is happening to our hair, looks, body …

Moreover, doctor cuts, facepaint, pulled back eyelifts,

chin tucks,  various creams and knives etc.

no matter how many fixes, brushes, paintings, shadows, lippaints we buy

this new canvas we employ

can not stop age nor its onslaught …

Might it be that we are forcing ourselves

to reject our next stage of beauty?


What do you think?

Ethical Beauty . . .


Ethical Beauty – what does that mean to you? For some people it means using beauty products that are not tested on animals. That certainly is a consideration. However, what do you know about Ethical Hair? As I purchased groceries in the supermarket today, I observed 3 youngish women who had weaves.  I wondered if they knew whether the hair they donned so beautifully had come from a source, which was using an ethical business model.

beauty_got ethicsWhose hair is it anyway that we are buying, and who is getting the business?  Chris Rock discovered a $9 billion industry, and that was in the year 2009!   Yes, “the real hair for sale industry” is presently one of the largest businesses in the United States.

♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

For those of you who care about the source of  human hair you buy, below are some of the things I discovered as I searched for information about “ethical hair”.  As always, at the end of the paragraph, click the link for more detailed information.

Great Lengths sources their hair from the Hindu Temple, Tirumala, where the traditional religious ceremony “tonsuring” is practiced. Entire families (men, women, children, grandparents) make the pilgrimage to the temple to voluntarily have their heads shaved. This act of thanksgiving typically takes place before or after a momentous, joyful event. via Our Hair Source | Great Lengths.

Great Lengths Introduced their Setting Fair Standards Stamp. Setting Fair Standards Criteria:

  • Every strand has been donated willingly and with the full consent of the donor
  • The donor has been treated with respect and care
  • A fair and reasonable price is agreed for the hair and the money used to procure the hair is used solely for charitable endeavours, not for personal or individual profit
  • A company representative procures the hair to cut out unreliable middlemen and ensure full and direct knowledge of the hair’s origin
  • Exclusive in-house production process is used from      procurement of the hair to wholesale selling the extensions to ensure full traceability via Hair extensions | Setting Fair Standards.

♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

I realize that many of my readers may not live in the UK, so I checked a little further for a salon in the US that might be able to give you more information. One of only five certified in all 3 Great Lengths Hair Extensions in the US, and the only one in the NYC, New York Area. via Great Lengths | NYC Hair Salon Blog.

I hope this is helpful.  Stay beautiful!


FYI – Hair Loss is a Lonely Feeling

lonely_hairbluesAnyone suffering from hair loss knows it is a very lonely feeling. She also knows that anytime she sees an article about Hair Loss that she is  immediately drawn into what that person’s experience is like, and what she can learn from the other experience.  Such was the case as I was standing on the checkout line in the grocery store when I spotted the title article in the March 2013 Family Circle magazine,  “The Health Problem 30 Million Women Have…Are You One of Them?”  How could I resist reading this article?  Shouldn’t I be informed about this problem?  And sure enough, just as I had suspected, the article was about Hair Loss.

♦ ♦ ♦

I bet many of you had no idea the number had gone up so dramatically — 30 Million Women!  Yet, even with that news, it still is a very personal experience to each of us who is going through it, and who struggles daily with how to attack, or solve this condition.  Many of you may think that you did something to cause this condition. Many of you are wondering if there are any cures out there, which may help to slow down this process.  Similar to the condition itself, help seems to be very slow coming.

♦ ♦ ♦

Penny Musco’s article “What Happened to My Hair” will not tell you of any miracle cures.  She does not paint a ‘rosey’ picture for you about the turmoil of hair loss.  What she does do, that may help some of you, is she accepts the facts for her particular situation, and eventually accepts herself.  Her family (including her husband) still loves her, and she does not feel ‘shame’ anymore for having lost her hair. Although many of the “solutions’ she tried did not work for her, it does not mean it will not work for you.  I suggest you use her “4 step plan to save your strands”.

1. Get to a dermatologist, pronto.

2. Opt for medical procedures first.

3. Consider cosmetic solutions second.

4. Be Patient.

Read her article at:  http://www.pennymusco.com/Media/Non-fiction/WhatHappenedToMyHair.pdf

I hope this is helpful! hairblues_helpful

Black History& Beauty

womens_history_madame_cj_walker When we celebrate Black History we must include Madame C.J. Walker.  She was a pioneer in developing techniques for black women to address their hair problems. Below are some of her accomplishments.


Sarah Breedlove (December 23, 1867 – May 25, 1919), known as Madam C.J.Walker, was an American entrepreneur and philanthropist, regarded as the first female self made millionaire in America. She made her fortune by developing and marketing a successful line of beauty and hair products for black women under the company she founded, Madam C.J. Walker Manufacturing Company.

Like many women of her era, Sarah experienced hair loss.

♦ Sarah experimented with home remedies and products already on the market until she finally developed her own shampoo and an ointment that contained sulfur to make her scalp healthier for hair growth.

♦ … settled in Pittsburgh in 1908 and opened Lelia College to train “hair culturists.” In 1910 Walker moved to Indianapolis, Indiana where she established her headquarters and built a factory.

♦ She began to teach and train other black women in order to help them build their own businesses. She also gave other lectures on political, economic and social issues at conventions sponsored by powerful black institutions.

♦ After the East St. Louis Race Riot, she joined leaders of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) in their efforts to support legislation to make lynching a federal crime.

♦ In 1918 at the biennial convention of the National Association Of Colored Woman (NACW) she was acknowledged for making the largest contribution to save the Anacostia (Washington, DC) house of abolitionist Frederick Douglass. She continued to donate money throughout her career the NAACP, the YMCA, and to black schools, organizations, individuals, orphanages, and retirement homes.

♦ Madam C.J. Walker died at Villa Lewaro on Sunday, May 25, 1919 from complications of hypertension. She was 51. At her death she was considered to be the wealthiest African-American woman in America and known to be the first self-made female American millionaire. Her daughter, A’Lelia Walker, became the president of the Madam C.J Walker Manufacturing Company.

♦ Madam Walker was inducted into the Junior Achievement U.S. Business Hall of Fame at the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago in 1992, the National Women’s Hall of Fame, in Seneca Falls, New York, the National Cosmetology Hall of Fame and the National Direct Sales Hall of Fame. On January 28, 1998, the USPS, as part of its Black Heritage Series, issued the Madam C.J. Walker Commemorative stamp.

♦ On March 16, 2010, Congressman Charles Rangel introduced HJ81, a Congressional House Joint Resolution, honoring Madam C. J. Walker.

♦ In December 2010, New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg signed a bill designating the block of 136th Street between Malcolm X Boulevard (Lenox Avenue) and Seventh Avenue as Madam Walker and A’Lelia Walker Place.

via Madam C. J. Walker – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

Are You Tattoo Savvy?

tatoosSome of us may think that Tattoos are the latest fashion craze, but it turns out that in fact, Tattoos were around almost 5000 years ago!  Other research suggest that the word tattoo comes from the Tahitian “tatu” which means “to mark something.” It is arguably claimed that tattooing has existed since 12,000 years BC. The purpose of tattooing has varies from culture to culture and its place on the time line.http://www.powerverbs.com/tattooyou/history.htm

♦ ♦ ♦

Needless to say, there is plenty of information about tattoos, however for this post we will focus mostly on some of the do’s and don’t when considering whether you want to ‘beautify’ your body with one of these picture expressions. As always you can click the links provided to read the details. 🙂

The word “tattoo” was brought to Europe by the explorer James Cook, when he returned in 1771 from his first voyage to Tahiti and New Zealand. In his narrative of the voyage, he refers to an operation called “tattaw”. Before this it had been described as scarring, painting, or staining.via Tattoo – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

shutterstock tatoo

So what are some of the things you should consider before tattooing?
What are the Risks?
Infection – Dirty needles can pass infections, like hepatitis and HIV, from one person to another.
2) Allergies – Allergies to various ink pigments in both permanent and temporary tattoos have been reported and can cause problems.
3) Scarring – Unwanted scar tissue may form when getting or removing a tattoo.
4) Granulomas – These small knots or bumps may form around material that the body perceives as foreign, such as particles of tattoo pigment.
5) MRI complications – People may have swelling or burning in the tattoo when they have magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). This happens rarely and does not last long. http://www.fda.gov/forconsumers/consumerupdates/ucm048919.htm

Making Sure Your Tattoo Parlor Is Safe

Follow these safety checks from Tanzi
1) Treat a tattoo as you would any other medical procedure. “You want a tattoo parlor to be at least as clean as a dentist
or dermatologist’s office,” Tanzi says.
2) Ask to see the tools the artist will use. The needles should be new, sterilized, and wrapped — no exceptions. The ink should be in small pots meant for single-use and anything that touches your skin should not be reused. And the artist should wear gloves.
3) Make sure the work area is free of any possible contamination from items like purses and cell phones. via Tattoos: Are They Safe?.

Tattoos & Corporate Jobs Advice

A study by Careerbuilders shows the perils of tattoos for aspiring professionals, and confirms the conventional wisdom that tattoos are a bad choice for anyone who hopes to work in a corporate position:

  • Over 42 percent of managers said their opinion of  someone would be lowered by that person’s visible body art.
  • Three out of four respondents believe that visible tattoos are unprofessional

First Amendment Freedom of Expresson and Tattoo laws

This article titled “Body art in the workplace” confirms that companies have a constitutional right to ban employees with tattoos:

Companies can limit employees’ personal expression on the job as long as they do not impinge on their civil liberties. According to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), employers are allowed to impose dress codes and appearance policies as long as they do not discriminate or hinder a person’s race, color, religion, age, national origin, or gender.

There is a strong legal basis for discriminating against the tattooed, especially if the employer fears that having tattooed employees might hurt their professional image. http://www.dba-oracle.com/dress_code_tattoos.htm

tattoo_pinkWhat About Temporary Tattoos ?

A temporary tattoo is a non-permanent image on the skin resembling a real tattoo. Temporary tattoos can be drawn, painted, or airbrushed, as a form of body painting, but most of the time these tattoos are transferred to the skin. via Temporary tattoo – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

Types of Temporary Tattoos: Know Them for Safety Reasons

Temporary tattoos are offered in several varieties. Decals (press-on) are the most common and the most easily applied. Airbrush-style tattoos are generally applied by a tattoo artist. Henna tattoos are painted on the skin. via Are Temporary Tattoos Safe? What Consumers Need to Know – Tattoo Manufacturing.

♦ ♦ ♦

You can visit the FDA’s page about temporary tattoos to learn more about their oversight of these products.

I hope this is helpful 🙂


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