February Contest!

For all your beauty advice…

It’s a new month, so that means it’s time for a new contest! Ok…I’m about a week late, but better late than never, right? Congratulations to the January Contest winner! She has been notified, and her awesome prize is on the way!

So, what’s the goodie for February? Well, it’s good…really good, so make sure you get your name in for this one! CND (Creative Nail Design) is one of my favorite brands of nail polish. They have these polish duo kits that let you create different looks for your nails. I came across one of these kits, and thought, “that HAS to be the February prize!”

In this kit, you will find a smoky teal polish, and a sheer, glittery silver polish. Wear either one alone, or create a really cool effect when you apply the silver over the teal. This will look great on fingers or toes! If you’re familiar with my contests, you know how to enter. If you’re new to my contests, all you have to do is reply to this post, requesting to be entered into this contest, or put a comment on my Facebook page telling me you want to be entered into this contest. A winner will be chosen at random and notified in the beginning of March.

But wait…there’s more! (I love saying that!) The winner of this contest is also going to get a bonus nail polish set! OPI had an amazing collection with the movie Burlesque and even though those colors are not available anymore, I was able to come across a set of mini polishes that has 4 amazing colors from this former collection.

So, get your name in for this contest! Tell your friends to enter, tell them to tell their friends to enter! Whoever wins this is one lucky person! Good luck, and thanks for playing!!

Email me your questions for Q&A Monday to brookeknowsbeauty@hotmail.com

You’ve Been Beautified!

Q&A Monday

For all your beauty advice…

Good morning, and Happy Monday! I hope everyone had a great weekend and enjoyed the Super Bowl. Thanks for the questions this week. Read on about rubbing alcohol on the skin, shaving your head to make your hair grow, and problems getting hair to grow long.

Dear Brooke, Is rubbing alcohol ok to use as a toner? I tend to break out and have really oily skin, and straight alcohol seems to clear up my skin and dry it out (which I like!). Is this a bad choice, or am I good to go? Jade N.

Dear Jade, As a fellow oily skinned gal, I understand the appeal of using rubbing alcohol to dry you out and clear you up. However, you may be causing more problems to your skin, than solving them. Oily skin needs some kind of moisture, and when you strip all of it away, your oil glands will over-produce oil because they’ve been tricked into thinking your skin has dried out. If used for any length of time, there can be not so good side effects. You may notice your skin is constantly irritated and itchy. Redness and hives can also be a result of using rubbing alcohol all the time as a toner. If you have an area that has a bad breakout, I suggest diluting rubbing alcohol with a little water, and applying to the infected area. Let it dry and then apply a light moisturizer to your skin to put some of that oil back. And, learn to embrace that oil just a little bit. You’ll be thankful when you have few, or no, wrinkles!

Dear Brooke, Does shaving one’s head really make the hair grow back thicker and darker? My friend just shaved her son’s head, using that as the reason. I think it’s not true…thoughts? Mary M.

Dear Mary, If I had a dollar for every person that thought this was true, I would be a very rich woman right now. The color, thickness, and amount of hairs on your head are individual to each person. Shaving the hair will not make it grow in thicker…it just looks and feels that way, because when hair that has been shaved grows back in, it’s got a blunt end from the shaving. If it was true that you could get more hair on your head by shaving it all off, everyone would shave their head to get more hair! Does it make it feel thicker? Yes! Does it actually trigger something internal to make it grow thicker and produce more hair? Um, no.

Dear Brooke, I have been trying to grow my hair out for 2 years now, and it seems like it hasn’t budged from the length it got to last year. Are there ways to get my hair to grow longer, or am I stuck with this length? Meg G.

Dear Meg, In my experience as a stylist, I learned that everyone’s hair has a “life span” and will stop growing at a certain point. It’s different for everyone; that’s why some people can grow their hair to their waist, and some people can only get theirs to the middle of their back. If you’ve been trying to grow it and have refused to cut it, and have split ends, that could be part of the problem. Cutting your hair will not  make it grow, but if there are split ends, you have to cut those off, because if they’re left alone they’ll just continue to split and then make your hair look shorter in spots and unhealthy all over. If you’re taking great care of your hair and keeping it trimmed on a regular basis, and it’s still not as long as you want it…you may have to come to terms with the fact that you’re never going to be Rapunzel! So, the best thing to do is find a great stylist who can give you some ideas on styles and start having some fun with a new ‘do!

Thanks again for the great questions, keep them coming! Email me your questions for Q&A Monday to brookeknowsbeauty@hotmail.com

You’ve Been Beautified!

Quick Tip Friday

For all your beauty advice…

Your hairbrush is just as important as any other styling tool you use. If the bristles are old and worn, they can damage the top layer of the hair (the cuticle) and cause frizz. When choosing a new brush, run it down your arm. If the bristles feel rough and abrasive, put it back! You’ll know when you’ve found the right one.

You’ve Been Beautified!

At-Home Peels

For all your beauty advice…

As wonderful as it is to go to a spa, dermatologist, or a plastic surgeon for a chemical peel that goes deep, it’s also great to know that there are quite a few products out there on the market to help “freshen” you up, or keep your skin maintained between peels. In my quest for miracle products, I have used some at-home peels, and wanted to write about the ones I think are totally worth the purchase!

The Brazilian Peel: Ahhh, Brazil…you have brought us so many amazing treatments…the Brazilian blowout (controversy!), the Brazilian Wax (OUCH!), and now an at-home Brazilian peel! This is a great product, from the packaging, to the results. It comes in what looks like a syringe, and has professional grade Glycolic Acid in one side, and a calming neutralizer on the other side. When you push the products out, they mix together as one, and you apply it to your skin. It feels warm when you first apply it and you will feel a slight tingle on your skin. But, the neutralizer keeps this high-level acid from causing any harm if you were to apply just the Glycolic Acid…that’s what makes this peel available to the public. It comes with 4 vials that are to be used once a week, for a month-long peel. After just one use, you will notice softer, smoother skin. Finish the 4 week system and you will notice diminishing fine lines, pores and wrinkles, and an overall brightness in your skin. $78 for a 4 week treatment is definitely reasonable, considering what one trip to the spa can cost you.

Dr. Dennis Gross Extra Strength Alpha Beta Peel: Another great at-home peel. This one is packaged in the form of facial pads, and it’s a two-step system. It is a more intense peel than the Dr. Gross Daily Peel, with higher levels of Alpha Beta Acids. It’s very easy to use…after you cleanse your face, let it dry and apply Step 1 of the peel, moving the pre-moistened wipe in circular motions until the wipe feels dry. You will feel a slight tingle, but it’s not unbearable. Wait 2 minutes until you apply Step 2, following the same process. Let this fully absorb into your skin. There is no need to rinse; as soon as it has absorbed, apply your moisturizer. If you’re doing this in the morning, make sure you are applying an SPF!

Philosophy Miracle Worker: Another peel that is packaged in the form of facial pads, Philosophy’s Miracle Worker is pretty much a miracle. The active ingredient is an anti-aging Retinoid Solution. The pads and the solution come separate and you pour the solution over the pads to moisten them. You apply this the same as you apply the Dr. Dennis Gross peel. Philosophy suggests you not only apply the peel to your face, but to the backs of your hands as well. This is a one-step peel that you use at night for best results. But, even though you’re just using this peel at night, you still need to be applying a moisturizer with SPF in the morning, even on cloudy days. After one use, your skin will feel amazingly soft, and after about a month, you will notice major changes in your skin. Dull skin will be revived, pores, wrinkles and fine lines will not be as visible. I used this peel for just one week, and people were wondering what kind of “freshening up” I had done. You’ll be glowing from within with this Miracle!

There are many more at-home peels on the market, but these are 3 of my favorites. I don’t think you should use these in place of a professional peel you get at the spa, or your doctor’s office…you should still plan on doing one of those every 3 or 4 months. But, these are great options for keeping your skin in shape between spa visits.

What at-home peels have you used? What’s your favorite one?

Email me your questions for Q&A Monday to brookeknowsbeauty@hotmail.com

You’ve Been Beautified!

The Many Uses Of Lavender

For all your beauty advice…

Once upon a time, I wasn’t a big fan of the smell of Lavender. It was too “something” for me…I could never put my finger on what about it I didn’t like. Maybe I thought it was too “old lady” smelling, or something like that. It wasn’t until I was doing a facial on a client and she asked me to add some Lavender essential oil to the facial steamer, that I fell in love with it. The scent of it wafting through the room was so relaxing, and it smelled so nice. I looked at the client, laying there enjoying this part of the facial, cotton on her eyes, classical music coming into the room, warm steam infused with this scent gently caressing her face…it took all my willpower not to push her over and jump on that facial bed and enjoy the steam! Since then, I’ve learned as much as I can about Lavender and the amazing uses it has when it comes to skin care.

Lavender essential oil is one of the only pure oils that can be applied directly to the skin. As powerful as it may be in the effect it has, it’s very gentle on the skin and has no need to be mixed with a carrier oil to dilute it. Lavender has anti-inflammatory properties, so if you have a burn, a rash, or acne that is red and painful, applying a small amount of Lavender oil to the area will help calm the burn, and reduce redness.

Lavender is very calming in so many ways. It can help ease anxiety, it can relax you and help you sleep, it can also help with headaches and muscle aches and pains. For a headache, massage a small amount of Lavender oil onto the forehead and temples, just be careful not to get it in your eyes. Mix a few drops of pure Lavender oil into some massage oil and massage into sore muscles to help them relax.

Make a linen spray with 1/2 cup of distilled water, 1 teaspoon of Witch Hazel, and 5 drops of Lavender oil. Spray your sheets and pillows lightly before you go to bed at night, and the subtle scent will help you sleep. I used to spray Lavender linen spray on my kids’ beds before they went to sleep at night.

The thing I love most about Lavender oil is that fact that it’s a natural antiseptic. It’s great for cuts and bites, and it also produces great results when used to treat acne in skin care. It relaxes the skin, takes away redness, and naturally cleans the area, clearing up blemishes. There are so many ways to use Lavender oil; it’s truly a multi-tasking essential oil, and I love it!

What about you? Love it, or hate it? Have you tried it for headaches, relaxing, muscle aches, or acne? I look forward to your response!

Email me your questions for Q&A Monday to brookeknowsbeauty@hotmail.com

You’ve Been Beautified!