Makeup Tools That Double As Skin Care Tools

Make up tools

There are so many different makeup and beauty tools out there, making it extremely easy for your cosmetic bag to become cluttered. To save you some space, as well as time, check out these makeup tools that also double as skin care tools.

Cellulose Sponges
Cellulose sponges are made from natural fibers and are great for both removing makeups as well as simply cleansing the skin. Soft and absorbent, these sponges are can be re-used, and are also incredibly compact, making them ideal for those who frequently travel.

Woman with tweezer

A Tweezer Set
A set of both slant and point tweezers in your beauty arsenal is essential, as you will be able to use these for so many different things. From removing unwanted stray hairs to placing false lashes, having the choice of both makes a huge difference.

Primer
Primers were designed to be applied before any other makeup product so that they could provide a base for foundation, and anything else, to grip on to, enabling makeup to last for much longer. However, primers also have a number of different skin benefits, as many of them also contain moisturizing and hydrating ingredients, as well as antioxidants and SPF. Primers also help to absorb any excess oil on the skin, making it a great tool for those who have oily skin. If you do have oily skin, then you are likely also battling the appearance of large pores, and this is something else that a primer can help with.

Woman applying lip balm

Lip Balm with SPF
When it comes to facial skin care, many people often end up unintentionally neglecting their lips, leading to dryness and chapped skin. Rather than trying to cover this up with some lipstick, invest in a high-quality lip balm instead, preferably one that contains SPF. This can then be reapplied throughout the day, not only giving your lips a subtle shine but protecting them as well. If you want some color, look for a tinted lip balm, but make sure that it still contains plenty of hydrating ingredients.

Facial Roller
Facial rollers are commonly used by Chinese medical and skin care experts, as they are able to reduce redness while promoting the draining of any excess fluid lying beneath the skin. It also stimulates blood flow, which results in defined facial contours and a brighter, more lifted, appearance, doing away with the need for the amount of makeup that you would usually apply. In addition to this, using the rollers before applying any skin care products will help to prepare your skin for the ingredients that will be following, enabling them to better penetrate your skin’s layers.

Everybody has their go-to makeup tools, but these are made even better when they can bring about beneficial effects to your skin as well. From a cellulose sponge to cleanse and remove makeup to a tinted lip balm to add a pop of color while protecting your lips at the same time, these are beauty tools that everybody should have in their cosmetics bag.

Find Time for the Great Outdoors

Woman in the forest

The great outdoors benefits the health in so many different ways, from reducing stress and obesity to increasing creativity, and there are countless studies to prove this. However, research has also shown that more and more people, both adults and children, are experiencing a lack of interaction with the great outdoors, but, fortunately, this is something that is easy to fix.

Taking the First Steps
If you have never been much of an outdoorsy person, then spending time outdoors will likely not come naturally to you. Rather than forcing yourself to take a hike up a huge mountain, start off slowly, with activities that you and your family can enjoy together. Whether this means pulling your child along a trail on a sled, finding new places to walk your dogs, or collecting leaves and seeds for a craft project, all of these activities still share the same goal of getting you to spend some time outdoors. If there is absolutely nothing that appeals to you just yet, pick an activity that sounds achievable, and set yourself a prize so that you have some extra motivation.

Friends at a meal

Al Fresco Dining
Rather than eating your meals inside your home, try al fresco dining once in a while, as this is a great way to spend some extra time outdoors. While you may only be able to do this when the weather is cooperating, enjoying a meal outdoors will add to the sensory experience of the whole meal, and will do your far more good than staring at your computer or phone. Whether this means a lunchtime picnic in the park rather than an office cafeteria meal, or breakfast on your doorstep under the sun, you will no doubt find that your food tastes so much better when eaten in the great outdoors.

Find an Outdoor Hobby
If most of your hobbies are based indoors, then it is time to find an outdoor hobby that you love, as this will encourage you to spend more of your free time outside. For those who enjoy staying active, there is plenty to choose from, including cycling, running, canoeing and golfing, while those who do not really enjoy sports much can turn to everything from photography to gardening to outdoor cooking.

Woman and daughter gardening

Start a Garden
Starting a garden is a great way to really get closer to nature, and simply having that one-on-one time with the earth around you brings with it its own set of unique health benefits. Even if you do not have a large area of land to work with, simply setting up a few pots outside your house can still have the same effect. If growing flowers has never appealed to you, turn your attention to growing food, which can easily be done in a small space. From herbs to potted vegetables, growing something that you can eat will only increase the sense of accomplishment that you will feel from starting a garden.

Making time for the great outdoors is more important than ever due to hectic, digital lifestyles. From finding an outdoor hobby to al fresco dining, these are tips that just about everyone can follow when it comes to making the effort to spend more time outside.

Living the Minimalist Lifestyle

Woman meditating

Living a minimalist lifestyle brings with it many advantages, from reducing your focus on material possessions to increasing your peace of mind. For those of you who have been curious about this type of lifestyle, but do not quite know where to start, here are a few tips that will help set you up for success.

Set Yourself a Personal Goal
Everybody has their own views on what a minimalist lifestyle should entail, and there is no right or wrong answer to this. Before beginning your quest for a minimalist lifestyle, you need to first set yourself a few clear goals that state exactly what you are hoping to accomplish from this. Whether this may be de-cluttering your house, or simply learning how to live with less, a clear goal, along with achievable steps to lead you to it, will make it all so much easier.

Choose a Clutter-Free Zone
The easiest way to take the first step in leading a minimalist lifestyle is by declaring a certain area of your house a clutter-free zone. Whether this is just a drawer in your nightstand or a counter top in the kitchen, make sure that this area is completely clear and clutter free. If you end up enjoying this way of living, then slowly expand that zone a little more each day, so that you soon end up with a whole clutter-free room. It will not be long before you then apply these practices to your whole house, resulting in the minimalist, clutter-free lifestyle that you have always dreamed about.

Project 333
Applying the concept of minimalism to your wardrobe can often be quite difficult, but this is where Project 333 comes in. This is a challenge that requires people to dress with only 33 items for three months, and this includes everything from shoes to clothing to accessories. While this may sound extreme, and maybe impossible for some, those who have completed the challenge have found that this way of dressing actually makes life so much easier, and have carried it on long after the three months have been over.

Minimalistic room

Remove Excess Furniture
Removing excess furniture from around your home can really help to open up each room and increase the amount of space you have while enhancing airflow within your house as well. If this is something that you are not sure about, you can always store your furniture somewhere temporarily for a trial period, so that you can see how well you cope without it before doing away with it for good.

Invest in Quality
Splurging on impulse buys is all-too-common, but these items will only end up adding to the clutter in your home. Instead, make sure that every purchase that you make is of the highest quality that you can afford, as well as being a thoroughly well-thought out decision.

Living a minimalist lifestyle does not need to be difficult, even though it may sometimes seem impossible to get started. From the beginning with a list of goals and a small, clutter-free zone, to clearing away excess furniture and cutting back on impulse purchases, these tips will soon have you living the minimalistic life that you have always envied.

Five Must-Have Memorial Day Fashion Picks

Memorial day

Memorial day is just around the corner, along with the three-day weekend that this brings. No matter what your plans for the holiday may be, here are five must-have fashion picks that promise to inject a dose of serious style into your weekend.

Maxi dress

A Printed Maxi Dress
Maxi dresses are always a go-to item in the spring and summer months and are able to flatter just about every body shape. While there is nothing wrong with choosing a dress in a solid color, a bold print will never fail to brighten up your day, while giving your outfit a strong focal point. Try to find a dress that is made from a lightweight material, with comfortable and secure straps and sleeves, as this makes it more versatile, and means that you will not have to worry about accidentally showing too much skin if there is a breeze in the air.

A Wide-Legged Jumpsuit
A wide-legged jumpsuit, in a neutral color, is a great piece to have for Memorial Day, as it can easily be taken from day into night. Whether you dress it down with some flip flops and daytime accessories or dress it up with a pair of stylish heels, this is a garment that will give you plenty of freedom to move around in, making it perfect for everything from a day of sightseeing to a night of dancing.

Sandals

Comfortable Sandals
No matter what you may have planned for the weekend, it is likely that there will be quite a bit of walking involved, which is why your footwear needs to be comfortable yet fashionable at the same time. Sandals are ideal for the warmer weather, but, if you plan on spending your weekend around the beach or pool, make sure that they can hold up to the water. A low heel, as well as good arch support and a cushioned footbed, may be necessary if you plan on staying active, so make sure that you take all of your plans into consideration before choosing a style.

A Chambray Button Down Shirt
If the weather forecast for Memorial Day weekend is warm and humid, then you will likely not need a jacket or sweatshirt. Instead, opt for a chambray button-down shirt, as this can be worn on its own, or as outerwear to give you a bit of extra coverage and warmth.

Woman with backpack

A Leather Backpack
Backpacks are bang on trend for this season, and, unlike many of the other accessory trends you have likely experienced, this one is extremely practical too. Rather than opting for a cool tote to cart your belongings around in this Memorial Day, go for a chic and durable leather backpack instead.

Long weekends do not come around very often, so you are likely to want to enjoy your time rather than worrying about what to wear. By planning all of your Memorial Day outfits in advance, you will be all set when the weekend arrives to simply kick back, unwind, and make the most of the three days.

Boost Your Midlife Brain Health

The human brain naturally shrinks with age, meaning that brain cells do not work quite as effectively as they used to. By the time a person reaches the age of 45, the memory begins to decline, as do other aspects of brain health. However, there are a number of ways in which you can boost a midlife brain to improve its health while giving it some extra protection for the upcoming years.

Man doing puzzle

Brain Exercises
There are many brain games and puzzles out there that are designed to help create new associations between different parts of your brain, which is great for strengthening it and keeping it sharp. You can also try carrying out normal, everyday activities, but using your non-dominant hand. For example, if you are usually right-handed, try using your left hand to do everything from brushing your teeth to hoovering the carpet.

Woman running with dog

Regular Exercise
One of the most effective ways in which you can boost your brain health is by partaking in regular exercise, as this has been proven, for many years, to be able to boost cognitive function. It does this by reducing cell damage and inflammation while increasing the density of brain cells, as well as blood vessels in the brain. When it comes to the different types of exercise out there, aerobic exercise is one of the best, as this can help with the parts of the brain that are associated with organizing, multi-tasking, and planning, while boosting heart health at the same time. Resistance training has been linked to beneficial effects on the memory, as has low-intensity yoga, so try to include these in your exercise routine too.

Control Your Blood Sugar Levels
Not only does high blood sugar levels lead to obesity and diabetes, but this also damages blood vessels in the brain, while impairing the parts of the brain that are responsible for memory. Lowering your blood sugar levels is as simple as making a few lifestyle changes, from practicing regular exercise to eating a diet high in vegetables, fibre and whole grains.

Group of friends

Socializing
Humans are social creatures, and, as studies have shown, socializing is important when it comes to keeping the brain stimulated and sharp. Research has shown that older adults who are less socially active tend to experience more cognitive and physical limitations, so make sure that socializing takes a priority in your life.

Brain-Boosting Foods
While a healthy diet itself is important for your brain, as well as your body, there are certain foods out there that are known for being especially beneficial when it comes to brain health. At the top of the list are foods that contain omega-3 fatty acids, such as oily fish and walnuts, as these have been linked to improved memory and focus, as well as a lowered risk of dementia.

Your brain is incredibly complex, but boosting its health does not need to be. From physical activity and a healthy diet to brain games and socializing, these tips will help you to keep your mind as sharp as possible while your body continues to age.

Outfits That Keep You Weekend Ready

Style

Weekend outfits should be casual and effortless, but many people feel as though they need to sacrifice fashion in order to achieve freedom. However, as these following outfits will show you, looking chic but being weekend-ready at the same time is much easier than you would think.

A Jumpsuit
When it comes to effortless fashion, jumpsuits are key, as these all-in-one pieces mean that you do not need to worry about mixing and matching garments to put an outfit together. When it comes to choosing a jumpsuit, opt for one with a print and style that really suits your personality rather than current trends, as this is a piece that you will be able to wear over and over again. From artistic geometric prints to military-chic styles, this is a weekend-ready outfit that can easily be dressed both up and down.

Woman in long skirt

Pleated/Full Skirts
Full and pleated skirts are a great way to dress up a casual street style look, and can be weekend-ready depending on what you pair it with. Chunky heeled sandals and a chunky sweater will emphasize a casual look, as will a tank top or tee. Alternatively, if you are seeking a more feminine and sophisticated look, you could always wear the skirt with a chic blouse and delicate heels.

Fitted Jeans and a Blazer
Denim jeans are a wardrobe staple, and pairing them with a smart, fitted blazer immediately ups their smart factor. If you want to give this outfit even more of a flair, opt for a pair of jeans in a bold and daring color, such as red or yellow. While this may seem over-the-top at first, the blazer will help to keep it all relatively toned down.

Leather Shorts
Shorts are so versatile, making them perfect for a weekend filled with activities, as they allow for plenty of movement. However, rather than going for a denim or cotton pair, jazz your outfit up a bit by choosing a pair of leather shorts. Not only are these durable, but they will also make a statement, although you need to make sure that you always keep them as the focal point of your outfit. Ensure that the rest of your outfit is quite simple and minimal, pairing dark shorts with a light colored top. Since leather shorts draw the eye to your legs, your choice of footwear is equally important, and you will likely need to experiment with a few styles before you find a pair that works with the look you are going for.

Woman in printed pants

Printed Pants
Printed pants are usually bold and bright, with the print that you choose reflecting your personality. Prints can also be used to highlight certain features of your body, or to downplay any that you would like to hide, and they will always add some extra interest to your look. In order to keep your outfit looking cohesive, pair your printed pants with a plain-colored top, unless you want to emulate the fashion-forward trend of wearing prints with prints.

No matter what you may have planned for the day, putting together a weekend-ready outfit does not need to be difficult. From feminine pleated skirts to edgy leather shorts, these outfits should provide you with plenty of inspiration to experiment with.

Add a Pop of Summer Color to Your Summer Wardrobe

Summer Colours

A pop of color is a great way to brighten up your summer wardrobe, and there are countless ways in which you can incorporate this into an outfit. From sunshine yellow to candy pink, here is some style inspiration for the upcoming months.

Shocking Pink
One of the hottest color trends for summer 2017 is shocking shades of pink, encompassing everything from candy pink to deep cherry. A shocking pink dress is beautifully feminine, and can be paired with neutral accessories to tone it down if needed. Alternatively, a deep cherry or raspberry colored cardigan is perfect for brightening up a chilly summer evening, and will also give your face a warm, rosy glow, while a bold pink skirt, in an easy silhouette, is unexpectedly versatile.

Vibrant Stripes
Bold, geometric prints are going to be huge this summer, especially when it comes to stripes. While classic, horizontal stripes will always be popular, criss-cross stripes are a great alternative, and provide an outfit with quite an unusual dynamic. From a pleated, flowing maxi dress, such as the one from Chloe, to graphic, striped accessories, such as the bags from Sonia Rykiel, stripes add color as well as pattern to an outfit, making them a worthwhile investment.

Yellows
Yellow is another color that will really be making a huge statement this season, and while the runways were filled with full-on, completely chromatic yellow looks, all you need is a pop of this color to really make a statement. As always, accessories are the best way to go if you do not already own many clothes that would work with yellow, but a cheeky yellow sundress is also well-suited for the season. If you are really feeling bold, go for a classic pair of trousers in a sunny yellow shade, because while this may seem quite out there, they can easily be styled down with a simple white t-shirt and some black flats.

A Patchwork of Colors
On the summer 2017 runways, many designers turned to patchwork, creating everything from pants to shirts to outerwear. Many unexpected fabrics and textures were put together, and this really creates an interesting look, as well as a vibrancy that perfectly emulates summer.

Florals
Printed florals are always popular in the spring and summer, but, this season, they are set to be even brighter and bolder than ever, making them an absolutely perfect choice for those wanting to add colour and pattern into their wardrobe. Pieces that nod to the 70’s are especially on trend, but, other than that, just look out for items that feature plenty of contrast while still being feminine, such as with the floral off-shoulder top from Chloe.

While dark and moody outfits definitely do have an ambience about them, summer is a time for color and vitality. No matter what your wardrobe may already consist of, these tips will help you to incorporate a bit of extra color into your closet, making use of pieces that can be styled in so many different ways.

Add a Digital Detox to Your Summer Getaway

Woman poolside

The average person checks their phone about 200 times a day, making that once every six and a half minutes. While a digital detox is a great way to overcome becoming a slave to your smartphone, the concept is frightening for many, so here are a few tips to ease you into it and set you up for success.

Set an Allowance
Many experts believe that a digital detox is something that people should ease themselves into in order to really succeed at it. For this reason, you should set yourself a daily technology allowance for all of your devices, beginning this well before your summer getaway. By restricting yourself in this way, you will be far more encouraged to spend time enjoying the real world once you have used up your allowance. However, make sure that you set an achievable allowance to begin with, for example, no devices on your lunch break, or in the bedroom at night, before building it up from here.

A Detox Buddy
Difficult tasks are always much easier when you have someone by your side, which is why a detox buddy could really come in handy this summer. Ideally, choose someone who you will be spending your summer getaway with, because this way, you will be able to support each other all the way through and keep up with each other’s progress. If you are travelling with a group of people, give phone stacking a try. This is where you all put your phones in a stack in one place and move on to do another activity. The first person who takes their phone from the pile then has to do a forfeit, whether this may be cleaning up after everyone else or buying dinner that night.

Leave Your Gadgets at Home
While the thought of travelling without all of your gadgets may seem frightening, this is one way to ensure that you do not slip up on your digital detox. If you have planned this well in advance, with set allowances in previous months and a detox buddy to travel with, you are likely to be much more receptive to the idea when the time comes.

Digital Detox Retreats
If you feel as though you may need some extra help when it comes to your digital detox, it could be worth looking into an organized digital detox retreat. These retreats tend to be held in areas of outstanding natural beauty, as this tends to really open the eyes of participants and make them see all that they have been missing while their eyes have been glued to their phones. They will also offer a schedule of physical activities, and help with setting yourself some personal boundaries when it comes to technology for when you return home.

While a digital detox may seem like a drastic move, it actually brings with it so many different benefits. From reducing depression and anxiety to increasing work productivity, these are just a few of the reasons as to why you should give a digital detox a try this summer.

Do You Look Like Your Mate?

While opposites do attract, many couples end up looking quite alike, and there are actually a number of scientific theories about this. From sharing the same ancestry to sharing the same experiences, here are a few reasons as to why you may look like your mate.

Happy couple

Shared Ancestry
While this may sound far-fetched, many couples actually share the same ancestry, meaning that they were related long before they got married. A study that was recently published in the journal PLOS Genetics discovered that, out of a group of 879 spouses, couples had a tendency to marry people who shared their genes. The study looked at couples across three generations, and found that, in later generations, this became less common, and people would cast their nets a bit wider when it came to looking for love.

Shared Experiences
The idea that many couples looked alike is nothing new, and a study carried out at the University of Michigan in 1987 has been one of the most successful ones to date on this topic. Researchers found that couples who had shared a long life together also shared similar experiences, which left them with similar expression lines on their face. Whether this may have been a life of hardship resulting in deepened frown lines, or a life of smiles and crow’s feet, this is quite a promising theory as to why many couples look alike, especially if they have spent a significant number of years together.

Unconscious Mimicry
Unconscious mimicry is when a person unconsciously imitates the people around them. For example, adopting intonations from your friend’s voices, or copying the way in which a friend sits. This principle could also be potentially applied to couples that look alike, because as they will have mimicked each other so much over the years, this would end up gradually reshaping their face.

Happy couple

Other Theories
There is no denying that many couples tend to look alike, and while the above-mentioned theories may be some of the most popular, there are a few other ideas about this as well. One of these theories is that the increased resemblance is linked to living in the same environment, while others believe that a similar diet could have something to do with this.

Only Skin Deep
While the facial features of long-time spouses may start to appear similar, a study carried out in 2010 showed that this was only skin deep. The results of this study proved that people who had been married for 40 years or more had personalities that were just as different as they used to be, even if they had been sharing everything from a home to habits.

It has been known for a while that many spouses share similar features in appearance, but it would seem as though scientists are still a long way from pin-pointing exactly why this is. While each of the theories mentioned above do seem plausible, it is just as likely that it is a combination of all of them, from a shared environment to shared habits, and even to shared DNA.

Add These Accessories to Your Summer Wardrobe

Now that summer is on its way, this is a great excuse to splurge a little and invest in some seasonal accessories. From chokers to giant earrings, here are a few accessories that are right on trend for this summer.

oversized earrings

Oversized Earrings
Oversized earrings are going to be all the rage this summer, and the Spring Summer 2017 runways were definitely proof of this. The earrings seen were heavy and large, sometimes featuring jewels and sometimes featuring bold, graphic details. For those who prefer sparkling gems, check out the earrings from Gucci and Alexander McQueen, while the cugg earrings from Delpozo are bright and extremely spring-worthy. Of course, feminine earrings never go amiss, and some great versions of this can be found at Dsquared2, where the earrings feature everything from ribbon bows to hearts and lips.

Ankle Bracelets
While those who have quite a bohemian personal style are likely to already own a couple of ankle bracelets, this is an accessory that will become much more mainstream this summer. These are the perfect way to decorate your feet after a long winter of keeping them wrapped up, and work well whether you are barefoot on a beach or wearing sandals in a city. Lanvin took this trend even further by promoting tasselled ankle bracelets on both feet, while Attico has some lush, velvety anklets that feature stylish buckles. For a more elegant touch, take a look at the collection from Fenty x Puma, where you will find delicate pearl strands.

Statement belt

Statement Belts
Many summer outfits tend to be quite simple, and a statement belt is a great way to jazz this up. For those who want to add an edgy attitude to their outfit, the leather punk belts from Alexander McQueen would be a great addition to your wardrobe, while Custo Barcelona, Bibhu Mohapatra and Carven have some more feminine, delicate, bejewelled options available. To take their statement belts even further, many designers even styled them by tying them into a knot, which really transforms the whole outfit.

Multiple Rings
You likely already own a number of rings, and wearing these with multiple other rings is a great way to do things a little differently. Try this in a few different ways, from subtly, with just a couple of rings on each hand, to extravagantly, with bejewelled rings on all five fingers, which is something that has been seen recently at Gucci.

choker

Chokers
Chokers were huge in the 90’s, and have been making quite the comeback in recent seasons. If you have not yet purchased a choker, thinking that they are likely to go back out of style soon, think again, as these seductive accessories are set to stick around this year. To really emulate spring, opt for bright, seasonal colors, or for the delicate, fragile chokers from Christian Dior, as well as Coach 1941.

Even if you do not plan on updating your wardrobe much this year in terms of clothing, new accessories will still be able to transform your outfits. From a statement belt to a seductive choker, these are some items that are definitely worth adding to your closet this year.