Any woman will tell you that her hair is one of the most important aspects of her appearance - and one that is essential to her self-esteem. But it’s not always easy to decide on a new hairstyle, which is why many women (and men!) gain inspiration from celebrities and popular entertainment. Keeping an eye on the latest hair trends can also help hair salons stay relevant in a crowded marketplace. It’s still unclear which cuts, colors and styles will make a splash in 2010, but it’s worthwhile to take a look backwards at what was hot in ‘09. Here are a few of last year’s most requested hairstyles:
Gwyneth shows off her stylish elongated bob.
The elongated bob. Always a classic, the bob itself dates back to the 1920s, when fashion-forward flappers popularized the look by chopping off their long hair into sleek, chin-length cuts. This version of the bob enjoyed a moment back in 2008, but 2009 saw a different spin on the trend - one that was slightly longer, making it easier to wear and maintain. Katie Holmes, who rocked a shorter bob with bangs a few years back, was one of the first celebs seen with this look, while Gwyneth Paltrow arguably perfected it with her collarbone-grazing, stick-straight blonde bob. As women looked for ways to cut back on their expenses in a recession-stricken economy, this take on a perennial style was one way to scale back on salon visits without sacrificing edgy style.
Long, flowing “vampire” hair. Of course, not everyone decided to go shorter last year;
Deborah Ann Woll of 'True Blood' fame.
instead, many women responded to the white-hot vampire trend by requesting long, wavy hair inspired by their favorite beauteous bloodsuckers. Commonly cited favorites include Bella, the heroine of the Twilight films (as portrayed by Kristen Stewart), and the ladies of the hit HBO series True Blood - particularly Deborah Ann Woll’s character, Jessica. Some women even resorted to extensions, either temporary or permanent, to achieve that flowing, lustrous look that speaks of eternal youth and supernatural beauty. With a new season of True Blood and the third installment of the Twilight film franchise on its way in 2010, this trend shows no signs of vanishing in the sunlight!
Christina Hendricks sparked "scarlet fever" with her red locks.
Going red. Another popular hair trend in ‘09 could be summed up in two words: Red fever! Formerly blonde bombshell Scarlett Johansson was seen out and about with deep red locks that truly lived up to her name, while Christina Hendricks of Mad Men inspired many ladies with her luscious strawberry waves. Ashlee Simpson, whose hair has been practically every color of the rainbow, wowed fans by embracing bright red, and natural redhead Amy Adams kept things understated and classy at the opposite end of the color spectrum.
So which way will the tide turn in 2010? It’s still too early to tell, but any of the above hairstyles can easily be achieved by professional hair salons. Simply bring a photo of your latest obsession in to your stylist, and he or she can make magic happen! And remember, you should never underestimate the power of gorgeous hair.
…for only $22.90. I’m not as crazy about the colors as I am about the Piperlime one…but I am much crazier about the price. Just goes to show that it can pay to shop around. Now I think I can afford the heels too!
Iconic fashion designer Alexander McQueen, who was legendary for his edgy designs and rabble-rousing attitude, was found dead at his home in London yesterday. While McQueen originally rose to prominence as a tailor working on London’s tony menswear hub Savile Row, he later became the head designer for Givenchy and the ultimate force to be reckoned with in the world of avant-garde haute couture. More recently, he released an affordable take on his McQ Alexander McQueen line through the Target Designer Collaborations series. The cause of death is still unconfirmed, but rumors are circulating that McQueen may have committed suicide; his mother passed away less than two weeks ago. As the fashion world continues to mourn the loss of a true visionary, take a look at some of Alexander McQueen’s most memorable designs here, and view a slideshow of celebrities who have worn some of his more daring creations on red carpets over the years here. Rest in Peace, Lee Alexander McQueen; you will be missed.
Valentine's Day Premiere with the beautiful Jennifer Garner, Anne Hathaway and Jessica Biel
It’s Valentine’s Day this weekend and Valentine’s Day, the movie, hits theaters today. Are you looking forward to seeing this large A-list cast tackle all the ins and outs of love?? I can’t wait to check it out! And after seeing some of my favorite actresses on the red carpet at the premiere earlier this week, I’m feeling inspired for my own hot date this Sunday. This picture of Jennifer Garner, Anne Hathaway and Jessica Biel has got my wheels a-turning….which way should I go with my dress this weekend?? Should I go sexy and sultry like Jennifer, with a tight LBD with peekaboo lace? Should I go sexy and sassy like Anne with a short hemline and fancy feathers? Or should I go sexy and sweet like Jessica with a more traditional “Valentine’s” color and ruffles? I feel like all three women captured a different part of my personality with their very different but very workable styles. I am torn! I want to wear a dress inspired by this red carpet but I think I need help on this one…so I’m going to put it to a vote…
Last month, I was blown away by our First Lady’s glowing skin at an event. I blogged about a tip I read on how to achieve a similar effect with oil and lotion. The idea was to apply oil to your skin in the shower, with a washcloth. You rinse off the excess and then apply lotion on your skin after you’ve toweled off…So how did it go when I tested it out myself?
Ladies, let me tell you: This has become my new weekly luxury! My skin has never felt this silky and smooth - at least, not since I was a baby! I absolutely love how soft my skin stays for several days after I treat myself. Through trial and error, I found the best way to go about the process:
1. After I’ve finished bathing, I take a dry washcloth and generously put Johnson’s Cocoa Butter Baby Oil Gel on it. Then I apply the oil all over wet skin, focusing on my legs and arms. Bonus: the dry washcloth exfoliates skin.
2. Next I carefully rinse off the oil that hasn’t been absorbed. I emphasize “carefully” because the tub gets really slippery!
4. I slip into a robe for about 30 minutes so that all of the yummy moisturizing products soak into my skin and not my clothes. I liken the robe to how you would put on gloves after moisturizing your hands.
Voila! Softest. Skin. Ever.
Not only does it give me silky skin but it also makes me wash the tub once a week…I admit, sheepishly. Cleaning the bathtub is my number one dreaded chore - everyone has their thing. For some its doing laundry, for others its cleaning the toilet. For me, its cleaning the tub. I hate it, so I put it off. But since I could possibly greatly injure myself or my husband with the amount of oil slicking up the tub, I’m forced to clean it. That should show you just how much I love this soft-skin-technique: I don’t mind cleaning up after if I can have the soft skin I want!
I have always been a huge Natalie Portman fan. And I have always been a huge Rodarte fan. When the Rodarte for Target line hit stores right before Christmas, I was quick to pick up this yellow tulle/lace skirt to add to my wardrobe. I’ve been stumped with how exactly to make it into an outfit though. Well, leave it up to the fabulous Natalie to wear the similar slip dress version of my skirt. Now I know how fab it would look with some black accessories! It doesn’t look like they have the yellow version of the dress online anymore but they do have the black one and coral one, if you’re interested in scoring some high fashion that is red-carpet ready at a totally affordable price. Or you can always go with the skirt and put your own twist on the trend!
Yay, it’s Friday! And nothing says you’re ready for the weekend quite like a comfy, casual ensemble like the one the ever-adorable Drew Barrymore is sporting here, on a grocery run with boyfriend Justin Long. True, there’s not much to it - just your standard jeans, T-shirt and sneakers-type outfit - but there’s just enough detail to keep it interesting and quirky rather than messy or lazy. To steal this look, the first thing you’re going to need is a pair of slightly roomy jeans. No skinny jeans, no trousers, and no bootcuts; instead, look for straight-legged boyfriend jeans like this pair from Converse One-Star at Target ($34.99). Drew eschews a boring plain T-shirt in favor of a top with a bit of embellishment near the neckline, to add interest. For a similar effect, I like this floral knit top from Forever 21 ($13.80). Of course, you’ll need a purple and black buffalo plaid flannel to throw on over that shirt for warmth; if you order two or more, they’re just $29.99 each at CCS. (Yep, those are men’s shirts - all the better to lend that slouchy, borrowing-his-clothes vibe to your outfit.) Follow up with a pair of classic Chuck Taylors from Converse ($45) and a cool pair of shades ($5.80) and you’re ready for a Saturday morning outing. (Don’t forget to pull your hair back into little grown-up pigtails for bonus Drew points!)
For those of us who are forced to deal with acne well past our teen years, it can be challenging to determine which approach is best when it comes to vanquishing breakouts. I continue to swear by tea tree oil, but I’m always open to new suggestions, especially since acne often has a tricky way of overcoming whatever product or routine you’ve been using, forcing you to change course in order to keep your skin clear. I’m particularly fond of ideas that cost very little money, since the costs of skincare can quickly add up. That’s why I’m so intrigued by this post from Katrina at Shimmer Kisser, who has been using sea salt on her acne-prone skin for the past 6 months, with fantastic results. How does it work? Here’s her method:
“…at night in the shower after I’ve used my regular face wash to remove my make up I put 1/2 a teaspoon of salt in my wet palms. I then gently scrub my face for 10-15 seconds and wash it off. Sometimes I’ll do this in the morning too. I’m actually saving money because I don’t use face wash in the morning anymore like I use to.
If my skin is acting up I’ll put the salt on and leave it for 5 minutes. You can mix it with honey or your face wash and use it as a mask if you want a more intense treatment.”
You can also dilute some sea salt with water in a spray bottle and spritz it on to fight body breakouts. Love this tip! Has anyone else used salt to keep their skin clear? Did it work out for you?
Well, mascara definitely seems to be the watchword today, because Meagan’s not the only one who decided to try out a new lash booster for the new year! Of course, my motivation was a little less admirable; while Meagan was looking for a more natural alternative, I just wanted prettier eyes. So, inspired in part by our recent guest post from Clumps of Mascara’s Brittany, I decided to finally give CoverGirl’s legendary LashBlast a go. It’s hard to believe that I’m only now trying this product for myself, considering the fact that LashBlast has received the most effusive praise of any drugstore mascara this side of Great Lash, but there you have it! There are several different varieties of LashBlast available, including the sparkly “Luxe” line and LashBlast Length, but I decided to go with the classic “Volume Blasting” formula in the fat orange tube.
Was I impressed? Did it live up to the hype? Absolutely! This is probably the best drugstore mascara I’ve ever tried. It’s incredibly volumizing, and gives my lashes a nice little curl when I apply it slowly. I find that it can get a little clumpy on the first coat, but if you keep working the giant applicator through your lashes everything should right itself and you’ll be left with amazing eyes. The brush, with its flexible plastic bristles, is huge, it’s true - but it’s also surprisingly easy to use, so don’t be intimidated. My conclusion: You need to try this mascara if you haven’t already. I’m already looking forward to finding out how the “Length” formula (the one in the skinny yellow tube) measures up!
One of my New Year’s resolutions is to be kinder to my face. And I’m not talking about whispering sweet nothings into the mirror. I’m talking about resolving to use more natural makeup products so that I don’t assault it with so many chemicals on a daily basis. And I thought that starting with my mascara might be an easy way to go.
a good sample for me to try. Sure enough, they had the a mascara from Korres Natural Products. It is their ProVitamin B5 & Rice Bran Mascara and I thought, Jackpot! But I was a little concerned about how a natural formula would work to volumize and lengthen my lashes.
Well consider me resolved! I am seriously impressed by how dramatic the results were. I swiped it on only a couple of times on my right eye (which is on the left side of the photo here) and I left my other eye’s lashes naked. You can see the results below. I have naturally longer lashes, so I’m lucky in that regard, but doesn’t it look like I have false lashes on the left side?? I mean, I don’t think they look fake, per se, but they do look kind of awesome. This is one resolution that is going to be easy to keep…
While browsing the makeup section at Target yesterday evening, something interesting caught my eye: L’Oreal has unveiled the latest addition to their True Match line, and it’s unusual indeed. Why? Check out that applicator! We already have liquid foundations that can be applied with your fingers, a sponge or a brush, powder foundations both loose and pressed, “air brush” style makeup that can be sprayed on for a flawless finish, and even an oscillating puff designed to buff makeup into the skin. But this True Match Roller Perfecting Roll On Makeup offers something that I can safely say I’ve never encountered before: A “liquid light formula” foundation that is applied with a little sponge roller, just like paint! (Well, hopefully not just like paint, as I doubt that anyone is seeking that particular look for their skin.) I’m completely intrigued, if a little intimidated - and I predict that many more companies will follow suit with roll-on applicators for a variety of products. Any takers?
Happy New Year, Latest Beauty lovers! Has anyone else noticed how optimistic people are about 2010? It seems like the general consensus on the facebook statuses I’ve seen is that everyone thinks this is going to be a great year. That this will be “their year.” I love it! And I love thinking about how to make 2010 a great year in fashion. One of my favorite trends that is coming back in 2010 is the chandelier earring. These were popular a few years back and now Harper’s Bazaar is touting them as one of the big trends to look forward to seeing in 2010. I love the idea of putting my hair in a messy bun, throwing on a t-shirt and jeans and slipping some fancy chandelier earrings on for a finishing touch. They add a bit of pizazz to any outfit!
I will admit that their T-shirts are very soft and have just the right level of stretch, but that’s about as far as my interest went…until now. AA has just unveiled a collection of nail polish in “18 unique shades of high-quality color,” and I have to admit I’m intrigued. I’m loving Hunter, a dark green creme, and Factory Grey, which is pretty self-explanatory.
My acne-prone skin has always made me a little reluctant to try new powders, foundations and concealers, for fear that they’ll make me break out - but on the other hand, I’m always willing to give the benefit of the doubt to Neutrogena. (I had a dermatologist tell me that their cosmetic products are the most reliably skin-safe out of all of the drugstore brands.) Since I’ve had great luck with their Mineral Sheers line in the past, most notably the Concealer Kit (which I love), I decided to give the Mineral Sheers Powder Foundation a whirl.
Here’s what I love about this product: It’s so portable! Everyone who’s ever tried loose mineral makeup understands what a pain it is to transport, and this is actually quite easy to throw in your purse. When you’re ready to use it, take off the cap, slide the clear plastic that surrounds the brush down, and shake it a little to dispense the powder. That’s it. I was also fairly pleased with the quality of the brush. It’s not amazing, but it performs better than you might expect.
Unfortunately, I noticed a few flaws as well. First, while I appreciate the portability of the built-in brush, I don’t really like how you can’t access the powder any other way. If you want to use your own brush, you’re out of luck. I also think the “shake to dispense” method leaves something to be desired, as specks of powder always end up all over my bathroom counter - how wasteful! And, although the product is good, I can never build it up to a suitable intensity. It’s just way too sheer for my tastes. If I’m going to wear Neutrogena powder foundation, I think I would prefer to stick to their Powder Foundation Compact, which offers similar results but allows for more coverage than the loose powder. All in all, a decent product, but I doubt it will become one of my everyday essentials.
There are only 10 days left until 2009 disappears into the ether of history and 2010 is upon us, so without any further ado, here is the final installment in my series of posts on the biggest trends of the year. Today, we will cover the most notable nail fad of ‘09, the wild hair trend sparked by a certain Gossip Girl, and the fashion trick that’s fit for a First Lady.
BEAUTY: Matte nail polish. This was, hands down, the biggest nail trend of ‘09 - and one of the biggest beauty trends of the year, period. After matte-centric ManGlaze and KO Knock Out made headlines early on with their unique colors and finishes, it seemed like every single polish company (OPI, Zoya, Nubar and Orly leap to mind) launched at least one collection of matte polishes this year - and, in many cases, several. Essie, China Glaze and Rescue Beauty Lounge took the craze one step further with by creating matte top coats, which can be brushed onto any shade to create that velvety matte look. I haven’t seen many low-end knockoffs of the matte nails craze yet - you still have to stop by a beauty supply store or specialty retailer like Ulta to stock up - but I predict that drugstore brands will be rolling out their take on the trend very soon. Something to look forward to in 2010 - unless you’re already burnt out on it, that is! So what was your take on matte polish? Did you dig it, or do you prefer your manicure shiny?
HAIR: Long, untamed tresses. If you’re wondering what the most popular hairstyle of 2009 was, then look no further than Blake Lively. The blonde bombshell, best known for her portrayal of Serena van der Woodsen on Gossip Girl, epitomized the wild, messy, borderline unkempt long hair that could be seen on countless Hollywood starlets this year. (Case in point: Check out my last Latest Trends post, in which Lindsay Lohan is shown rocking the look.) I would describe it as Brigitte Bardot meets a serious case of bedhead. The New York Times even likens it to “the ‘Rachel’” of the ’00s - in other words, the defining women’s hairstyle of the decade, just as Jennifer Aniston’s updated Friends shag was the ‘do of the ’90s. And if you lack the natural length necessary, don’t fret - there’s always extensions!
FASHION: Waist-accentuating belts. This is one of the most figure-flattering fashion trends in recent memory, and it is my humble opinion that we owe it all to First Lady Michelle Obama. Sure, women wore belts before Mrs. O emerged as a fashion icon, but I can’t remember so many ladies belting their dresses, cardigans, and so forth quite as much as they do now. The belt has evolved from a sartorial afterthought to one of the most vital accessories a woman can own. They can make an ill-fitting or loose dress incredibly pretty and polished, and they make any outfit look “done,” but not stuffy. If you don’t have at least one or two belts at this point - which I doubt - look for a wide one that’s fitted to your waist but has a bit of stretch, and consider an eye-catching color for added drama. Or you could go the First Lady route and pick up a clear belt, like this one. It’s sleek and futuristic yet pretty and classic, and it will certainly go well with any color combination. Belts, we salute you. Thank you for bringing the hourglass figure back into popular consciousness!
Surely you’ve heard by now that Sex and the City 2 will be hitting theaters in 2010, and no matter how you felt about the storylines and character development in the last movie, you’ll probably want to know what Carrie & Co. are wearing. The above image of Sarah Jessica Parker/Carrie Bradshaw in a comfy-looking white jersey dress and fabulous gold accessories is probably already familiar to you if you’ve seen the film’s promo poster, and it could be an easy one to duplicate - even if you’re on a budget. Start by throwing on a short-sleeved white dress that nips in at the waist and has a scoop or V-neck to show off those amazing collarbones. This See by Chloe pleated jersey dress will do the job nicely, and it’s marked down from $470 to $141, making it surprisingly affordable as well. Next, you’ll need a cool statement necklace; I love this Twining Snake Necklace from Rock Paper Scissors Jewelry ($49). While Carrie’s handbag is a structured gold clutch, this shiny gold wristlet from Express has the same feel for just $15.75, and a pair of glittery gold platform heels from Wet Seal will up your footwear glamour quotient for under $25. And, finally, the piece de resistance - a pair of gold mirrored aviator shades - can be purchased from Amazon.com for the astonishingly low price of $6.99 for a 3-pack!
What do you think of Carrie’s look? Are you excited for SATC 2?
As 2009 draws to a close, the onslaught of “Best Of” lists has begun. Since I love to see celebrities all decked out for formal events, I was particularly excited to check out Jezebel’s list of the Best Red Carpet Outfits of 2009. While I don’t entirely agree with Sadie’s choices, I appreciate the fact that she listed less “conventional” ladies, like Tilda Swinton and Chloe Sevigny, right next to Best Dressed stalwarts like Natalie Portman and Anne Hathaway. And, of course, it inspired me to compile a list of some of the most notable red carpet moments of the year, according to LatestBeauty.
In chronological order (starting at the beginning of the year), here are a few more fashionable celebs who deserve Red Carpet Awards in ‘09:
Holidays are stressful, y’all. There are all the parties, the gift giving, the holiday cheer, the elbowing in the stores. And you often feel like you’re being pulled in ten different directions so that you can get everything just right. I can feel the tension building just thinking about it. We are in the midst of Hanukkah and Christmas is next Friday….do you think you can squeeze in a little R&R for yourself before the end of the year? Because if you can, and you are in the LA area, then you need to check out this rundown of spa specials that expire at the end of the year. If you don’t think you can fit in some “me” time, you might change your mind when you read about some of these tantalizing treatments. I am totally getting the Rock Star treatment over at El Leon Spa on Beverly Blvd. Here’s the rundown:
El Leon, a Spanish-Moroccan oasis, and its sister spa the Raven, inspired by the jungles of Thailand, offer $50 off a treatment they call the Rock Star: more than two hours of services featuring a Dead Sea salt and lavender oil hand/foot massage, a full-body Thai massage, and a head, neck and face massage ($135, regularly $185).
TWO HOURS of services for what some spas charge for one hour?? And I have been dying to try a Thai massage. Mama needs to be stretched. Seriously. Now I know what to tell my husband to get me for Christmas. Heck, we should go together as a holiday treat for both of us. Which means my shopping for him is done…ooh…I can already feel the tension slipping away…
If massages aren’t your thing, there are plenty of spas offering deals on facials and pedis and more. Treat yourself. You deserve it.
It was announced this month that THE color of 2010 is Turquoise. Pantone, the global authority on color, has made the call and they explain their reasoning behind this decision, saying,
Combining the serene qualities of blue and the invigorating aspects of green, Turquoise evokes thoughts of soothing, tropical waters and a languorous, effective escape from the everyday troubles of the world, while at the same time restoring our sense of wellbeing.
Well, sign me up! I have always been a big fan of turquoise and I think it is one of those rare colors that is bold but also flattering on most skin tones and colorings. With turquoise being the latest and greatest color to look forward to in the new year, I decided to get a head start and pick out a few turquoise pieces that can take you throughout the year….
This turquoise coat from Love21 (Forever21’s contemporary line) is sophisticated and stylish. I love the collar and the texture of the trim. Perfect for getting you through the beginning months of 2010.