Tuesday, December 29, 2009


Many people assume weight training means getting bulky. This doesn't have to be the case and there are many benefits to adding weight training to your lifestyle. Lifting weights help you lose weight. Muscle burns more calories than fat. Cardio of course is a key element in weight loss but when you build muscles you increase the rate of your body's metabolism. Therefore, when you increase the rate of your metabolism you will be able to burn more fat since your body is burning more calories.

Weight training also increases your body strength and energy levels. In addition to this, your body physique also improves which will raise your self confidence. Weight training is also good for your mental health, like any other exercise, endorphins are released, making you happy. It's also good for slowing down the aging process. When you age, muscles are depleted so in order to counter this effect, it's important to continuously train your muscles. building muscles in your core is also essential to help posture and eliminate back aches. The stronger your body is, the healthier it is and the less risk you have for injury. Do something great for yourself and add weight training to your workout regimen.

Monday, December 28, 2009


If someone with sleep deprivation chooses to drive, the results can be fatal. There's over one hundred thousand car accidents a year that are caused by the driver either falling asleep at the wheel or being too tired to react quickly or have full concentration on the road. Tired drivers are more dangerous than drunk drivers. Drunk drivers only account for around 15,000. Since over one fourth of Americans suffer from sleep deprivation, being on the road becomes more dangerous.

Sleep deprivation can also kill you through illness. When you're lacking in sleep your immune system is weakened. Your immune system needs sleep so it can catch up while the rest of your body is resting. Illness that is usually overcome easily becomes harder with a weak immune system caused from sleep deprivation. Your body needs sleep to maintain its health. No one has ever died from lack of sleep but you can die from the effects of sleep deprivation. If you think you are suffering from sleep loss you should talk to your doctor about possible medications. Sleep deprivation is a serious matter and one that should not be ignored.

Sunday, December 27, 2009


There are ways to avoid training injuries. Most gym acquired injuries can be avoided. Injury prevention should be of the highest priority because obviously obtaining any injury will deplete any gains previously accumulated. I speak from experience here being the victim of a serious groin injury this past end of summer. I am a runner and from the extreme last minute training, deciding I was indeed going to run the Detroit Marathon after all summer I had planned on only doing shorter races, I pulled my groin. Had I let it heal instead of thinking I could run through the pain and causing more injury it would have healed sooner. Instead I kept adjusting my stride to limp and ended up barely being able to walk for awhile and missing out on the most perfect fall season I've ever seen for running. (sigh) I needed to have taken my own advice that I've given to others so many times.

Well nourished muscled can take intense exercise and help risk of over training. Nutrition also aids in muscle development. However, the key strategy in my opinion is to avoid over training. The intensity level needs to correspond to the muscles ability. So don't increase your training by great amounts too quickly. Forcing the muscles to do more than they are ready for or able to is just asking for injury. workout intensity should be increased gradually and workout schedules must factor in recover time for the muscles to heal. (This was my flaw this past summer. I am one of THOSE people that literally gets jealous if I see someone running on my 'rest' day so then my day of rest is no more).

No matter what exercise you are performing, correct posture and form is extremely important. When an exercise is done incorrectly it can easily result in injury. To avoid injury the exercise should be performed with precise technique, speed, form and posture. Any kind of weight lifting should be done with a focused mind. Loosing focus puts you in greater danger for injury and use a spotter when needed.

Lastly, listen to your body. Learn the difference between sore and injury and when you know it's an injury....REST or you'll cause more damage! Trust me, I know. Let the injury heal completely before stimulating the same area again. Follow these few guidelines to help avoid training injuries.
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Saturday, December 26, 2009


It's pretty easy (and fun) to get in shape by dancing. Most of us like to dance, and those that say they don't are probably the ones dancing around the house in their underwear the most. It not only helps us stay in shape physically but it helps keep you happy mentally since it aids in conquering stress by releasing endorphins. It's no surprise that exercise makes happier people so it only makes sense that dancing would have the same effect mentally.

Dancing is a fun activity that burns calories and you don't feel like you're actually working out. Fat accumulates around the hips, legs and waistline so dancing is a great way to get in shape. Dancing helps control high blood pressure also which deters cardiac disease.

Many high-end gyms have introduced dance session workouts. Professional dancers are hired who add dance moves to workouts. This attracts additional clientele for the facility as well. Most dance schools now also offer beginner and adult classes in ballet, tap, jazz and hip hop and these classes definitely kick your butt. They may seem costly but really if you eliminate a few cups of coffee per week from your favorite spot will cover the expense.

Don't have time to go to class or the club? Dance at home! I've been known to put on a pair of heels while cleaning the house and when the right song comes on....well you know the rest. Oh, and you don't have to wear the high heels but isn't it just more fun?? So, crank up the music and get in shape by dancing!


It can take a lot of searching to find the best abdominal workout. Strengthening the muscles in this area can take a lot of trial and error. You'll know you found proper technique and a good routine when you feel sore afterward. Your abdominal workout includes more than just your abdominal exercises. You need to avoid junk food and allow your body a healthy balanced diet. Cardio is also a key element and when combined with the other two can help you find that six pack you're been searching for.

An exercise ball is a great way to begin with your Abs. You can do a sit up right on top of the ball. You'll want to lie on your back with the middle pressing o the ball. Next, fold your arms over your chest and begin to raise your upper body using your abs. Be sure to keep your head in line with your back. Do this exercise slowly keeping your technique.

The captain chair is an exercise done using a machine in the gym that looks like a bottom less chair up on stilts. Using your arms you'll hoist yourself up and rest your feet on the side rails. Next, you'll push your feet up until they come around level with your waist, keeping your legs straight and together. I love this machine because there's so many variations. You can bed your legs at the knees and crunch them up and also do the crunches side to side to work your obliques. The lower Ab muscles are the hardest to work and they are worked here with these exercises.

The bike crunch is a great exercise also. Lie on the floor with your back pressed against it. Use your elbows to touch your knees as you move your knees toward you in the air. Be sure to use your Ab muscles, not your arms and legs. This works best in three sets of 15-20 reps.

Whatever exercise you choose, you want to do them in group sets allowing your muscles a short rest period in between. Fitness experts recommend Ab workouts 2-3 times a week. Working them everyday doesn't give the muscles time to recover. Every time you work a muscle hard, the muscle tears so you must rest them for them to recover and build. Whatever exercise you choose, don't forget the cardio and don't underestimate the power of Yoga. Yoga helps build your core which is the center of your body so grab your mat and add Yoga into your abdominal workout routine.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009


By now everyone has heard the upsetting news of Brittany Murphy's death and that cause of death is still unknown. An autopsy was performed on Monday but it will take four to eight weeks for toxicology results to come back. A final cause of death is pending the tests.

The investigation has "no one focus at this time" but that multiple prescription medications were recovered from the home.

The prescription drugs were all written to her and no illegal drugs were found. All the medications were collected and booked as evidence.

The name of the drugs or quantities has not been released but Murphy's husband says that there was prescriptions for 'her time of the month' and cough syrup and that was about it. There seems to be no evidence of trauma or foul play.

Murphy, dogged by speculation she had an eating disorder or drug problem, expressed concerns about her frail frame in an eerie last interview that may prove prophetic.

"I am a bit thinner now than what I would like to be," she told Fox News' Pop Tarts at an event just 2 ½ weeks before her tragic death. She was quick to credit her workout routine.

"I was a ballerina for a long time," the saucer-eyed starlet said. "I still take ballet lessons now - what it does to your body is incredible."

Still, Murphy was upbeat and making plans for the future.

"As far as having a New Year's resolution, I'd love to have a child next year," she told Access Hollywood at the same event on Dec. 3.

Monday, December 21, 2009


At 19 years old, Taylor Swift is a bona fide superstar. Her 2006 self-titled debut album went triple platinum. Her most recent effort, Fearless, sold 2.1 million copies in less than two months. When she won Album of the Year at the 2009 Academy of Country Music Awards, she was the youngest person in history ever to do so and last year she sold more albums than any other artist, including Britany Spears, Lil Wayne and Coldplay! Just how did she manage to pull it all off? The answer's in her songs. After Joe Jonas of the Jonas Brothers broke off their relationship via a 27-second phone call, Taylor penned the hit song "Forever & Always," saying: "did I say something way too honest/That made you run and hide like a scared little boy?". Not that Swift is waiting around for Jonas to come to his sense. She's been prepping for her success her entire life. Her mom says her fingers would crack from playing the guitar so much and she was driven beyond anything ever witnessed. Now she's a hit maker who is juggling her role as one of the world's top recording artist with trying to be a teenager.

When asked how she felt about being the top selling artist last year she's is so down to earth saying news like that really blows her mind. She says she does get some paparazzi but not enough to make her ever not appreciate what she has. She wanted to be famous her whole life so she's not going to complain about a little paparazzi. She she's on tour she does anywhere from five-six interviews PER DAY! She also says she doesn't date a lot because she really is a workaholic but loves every minute of it. She had a record deal that didn't work out and it was devastating to her. When she was 13 she got a meeting with RCA Records and they said they wanted to sign her to a development deal. That means they want to watch you but they're not promising to make an album with you-kind of like a guy that wants to date you but not be your boyfriend. After a year you turn in your songs and they decide whether they want to shelf you, keep watching you, drop you or sign you to a record deal. They decided to shelf her. She had to decide whether to stay with a company that didn't believe in her but wanted to keep watching her or leave and take a chance to make it on her own...and that's just what she did.

Taylor has never been fascinated by the party lifestyle. She has no ambition to be a rebel. She loves to write honest songs that name real people, then get up onstage and live out those emotions in front of thousands of people, to her that is rebellion. She grew up on a Christmas tree farm with plenty of space to run and be a crazy kid with tangled hair.

Swift has three pinch-me moments in her life. The first performing on Saturday Night Live. The second playing the Houston rodeo for 72,000 people and the third was doing the cover of Rolling Stone Magazine. Her goal is to do a world tour...and some point move out of her parents house. She says she doesn't have to have a music career forever, she'll bow out gracefully when her time is up, have kids and plant a garden. Oh, and she says she's going to go gray when she's older. She doesn't want to be blond when she's 60 years old. Just another reason for the world to love her!

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Sunday, December 20, 2009


Actress Brittany Murphy died today. Although people die everyday, I happened to really like this actress. Brittany was 32 years old. The 911 call was made early this morning by her husband Simon Monjack in Hollywood Hills. Los Angeles fire department responded to a call at 8am where she was found unconscious in the shower. The time of death just after 10 am from Cardiac Arrest. Her husband, neighbors said seemed dazed watching paramedics wearing pajama bottoms and no shoes, has requested an autopsy that will be done Monday or Tuesday. Brittany's mother Sharon says that her daughter had a history of Diabetes.

Brittany was born in New Jersey and later moved to Los Angeles to pursue acting. The great thing about her was that she has such an awesome unique look. Not the traditional looking Hollywood beauty, a look of her own and she was gorgeous. To add to her looks she was an incredible actress and very versatile in her roles and she appeared in some of my favorite movies. Some of the movies she acted in was Clueless, 8 mile, Drop Dead Gorgeous, Summer Catch, Just Married, Girl Interrupted, Sin City, Don't say a Word, Cherry Falls, Riding in cars with boys, Spun and my favorite....Uptown Girls. I can't think of a single movie that she didn't do just a great job in and she's so real and believable. Just Married is one I love to watch when I'm having a bad day....it always makes me laugh no matter what.

Many blessings and prayers to Brittany's husband, mother, family and friends. I'm sure she was like a breath of fresh air to be around to all those that loved her.


I've always wondered why on earth a female can spend $200 on a pair of jeans. I have tried on True Religion and Seven for all Mankind and never was impressed the feel and fit. Maybe their great on someone else but I figured the high spending on these items was just a trendy expense. I've always thought woman must be crazy to spend that kind of money on a pair of jeans....THAT IS UNTIL NOW. A couple weeks ago I went on a mission to find a new pair of jeans that I love and I was determined to not stop until that mission was accomplished. After trying on at least over 50 pair of jeans, my life was changed. I came across the HUDSON jean display at Macy's and I figured...why not add it to the pile. I grabbed several styles and headed to the fitting room, depressed after such a long day of wardrobe changes. As I put these jeans on I instantly fell in love, fell in love with the jeans and fell in love with how I looked in these jeans. They were transforming and so amazingly comfortable! The jeans are a lightweight denim with a bit of stretch. Not too much stretch that they change size after wearing yet enough to look better the longer you're in them. Let me tell you, these jeans wash and keep their shape and size unlike many jeans that shrink in all the wrong places...especially length. They're a perfect length for me. I am 5'8" and they are long enough to wear heels yet they look cute with flats or flip flops without looking sloppy. I cannot say enough about these jeans. The price tag was a hefty $197 plus tax but worth every penny. They are an investment and something that fits this perfect and lasts will get it's money worth out of. The downfall of these jeans....every pair and style fit perfect so I spent another half hour trying to decide on one pair! Oh and the best part...they're made in the USA. Next time you're shopping try a pair on and be ready to fall in love!

Thursday, December 17, 2009


Here's some tips to make the most of whatever Mother Nature gave you.

CAN EXERCISES LIKE PUSH-UPS REALLY MAKE YOUR BREASTS BIGGER AND FIRMER? To some extent. They won't affect your actual breasts, which don't contain muscle. (The only thing s that can make women's breasts significantly bigger, implants aside, are weight gain and pregnancy.) But exercise can build the pectoral muscles underneath, making you look a tad perkier, especially if you're on the small side. I recommend push ups or chest flies (lie on the floor with a weight in each hand, arms out in a T just below shoulder level; with a a slight bend at your elbows, bring weights together over your chest). Do three sets of 12 reps three times a week and you could see an improvement in three weeks.

IS THERE ANYTHING THAT CAN HELP PREVENT PREMATURE SAGGING? Actually, yes. How low you'll someday go (or won't) is largely determined by genes, but you can slow down the process by avoiding yo you weight gain and loss. It can stress and stretch breast ligaments, your natural support system. Also, wearing a bra that fits well, especially when working out can help prevent droopage as well by stabilizing breasts and reducing wear and tear on ligaments. Make sure your bra is firm around the body, since 90 percent of support comes from the band, not the straps. Women associate looseness with comfort but when a bra is loose it can't do its job.

DOES DRINKING COFFEE REALLY MAKE BREASTS SMALLER? You'd think so given the slew of headlines last year yet while studies did find that women with a certain gene variant who drank three or more cups of caffeinated joe a day had on average smaller breasts than those who downed less, that's not necessarily cause and effect.

WHY DO MY BREASTS GET BIGGER AND HURT SO MUCH RIGHT BEFORE MY PERIOD? Blame your homones. First, increased progesterone causes water retention, which can make breasts swollen and tender. Estrogen spikes too. they are working to prepare the body for pregnancy and signal the milk ducts to expand which can hurt. For sever pain, the pill may help, as can avoiding sugar, caffeine and anything high in sodium; those three boost fluid retention, which can make you temporarily bustier and bloated.

HOW COME MY BREASTS ARE SLIGHTLY DIFFERENT SIZE? Because you're human! Very few women are symmetrical. Even a one to two cup difference is on the spectrum of what's normal. Gel bra inserts or sewn in padding can help compensate. A cause for concern, if one breast suddenly gets larger it could be a sign of a tumor but that's incredibly rare. If you notice anything different see your doctor.

WHY DO BREASTS GET STRETCH MARKS? It's from a growth spurt-during puberty, pregnancy or from other weight gain. Creams can't quite get rid of them but those marks do fade over time.

HOW DOES HAVING KIDS REALLY AFFECT YOUR BOOBS? Well, first, they'll probably get bigger. Post baby, many women report winding up with smaller breasts than before pregnanacy. There's no biological reason for breasts to shrink and stay smaller after nursing but the breast tissue may shift so that they may look smaller to you.

THE TWO MINUTE BOOB JOB: Put on a push up bra and grab a waterproof matte bronzer a couple of shades deeper than your skin. using a fluffy brush, apply from the inside of your cleavage and swoop up about an inch over each breast. Now swipe shimmery waterproof highlighter just below the bronzer line and over the tops of breasts.

WHAT IS THE BEST WAY TO STAY VIGILANT ABOUT BREAST CANCER? You don't need to be obsessive but you do need to know your breasts so you can recognize changes. Experts say it's not uncommon for women to feel a lump while sudsing up in the shower or even when they're with a partner. If something doesn't seem right, check in with your doctor. Be sure to get a clinical exam from a doctor once a year. No matter what, don't overdo the drinking, anew study links alcohol to breast cancer. And, keep your weight healthy. The closer your body mass index is to normal the less likely you are to develop breast cancer. Period.

Monday, December 14, 2009


Remember how your mom always said "Get your hair off your face!"? Well she was right-you really ARE even more beautiful with your hair pulled back.

1. Try a double band updo-Work a mousse in your hair and blow dry. Make waves with a curling iron, then loosely twist hair back and pin in a bun (let a few pieces fall out). Slip on two stretchy bands, one behind the other,nudge hair into shape and hairspray.

2. Make a polished ponytail-Spritz a heat styler on damp hair; blow dry. Run a flatiron through for extra sleekness. Pull back into a high pony tail and tie on a pretty ribbon.

3. Work a classic bun-No style is simpler or chicer. blow dry using a paddle brush, then comb in a side part. Brush hair back at your nape and twist it around, pinning as you shape it into a bun.

4. Do a Very, very big Pouf-You're gonna need a lot of height for this '50's do. Start with a foam ring or hair doughnut. Leaving out the front part of your hair, make a high pony. slip on the ring and rape hair all around it, pin in in several spots. now brush the front back, secure in place and spray.

5. Go high on top, low below-This is one of the most versatile styles. It's dressy enough for an event yet loose enough for jeans. Apply volumizer to damp hair and air dry. Brush hair into a low side pony tail but don't completely pull the end of it through the elastic-you'll make a messy chignon. Now be a tease: Run a comb up and down the front and spray.

6. The super quick fix-Center part. Headband. Done!

Friday, December 11, 2009


The first step to getting your money under control is creating a budget. The process of looking honestly at your finances is like entering a 12-step program. You have to get over your denial and take a frank look at how much life costs you.

YOUR FIXED EXPENSES-These are the ones that stay the same every month like rent, bills and car payments, not groceries or trips to the drugstore. These fixed expenses should take up no more than 60% of your take-home pay, with housing being about half of that. If this stuff is eating up more, it's time to make some cuts.

YOUR GENERAL SAVINGS-In addition to your retirement contribution, you should be socking away 5-10% of your take home pay every month. Set it up to go into your savings account automatically if possible. If you're a bartender, waitress, hairdresser etc it's even easier...just set aside a percentage when you come home from work everyday.

YOUR LIVING EXPENSES-This is what you have left to live on-what pays for your groceries, clothing, going out, vacations and the credit card debt you accrued over spending on these things. Ideally, it should take up 30% of your take home pay. For many of us, that slice of the pie will take up a bigger percentage so start looking of cuts you can make.

THREE TRICKS TO HELP YOU STAY ON A BUDGET-1. Set aside a money moment each week. If you spend 30 minutes every Monday or Tuesday looking at your finances, you won't have to think about it for the rest of the week. 2. Do the green experiment. Use nothing but cash for a week. This will help you rethink the way you spend money. Put your debit/credit cards in a plastic bag full of water and in the freezer. 3. Use your secret weapon, the Internet. To help you keep track of how much you're spending, the new online tools are great. My favorite is mint.com because you link the site with your online credit card and bank accounts and it spits out colorful pie chars showing you how you spend your money all for free.

START SAVING FOR RETIREMENT...NOW!-After paying taxes, saving for retirement is your most important financial priority. period. Why the big rush to save money you won't need for 45 years? Because those years fly by faster than you think. Save at least 10% of your pretax salary and start now. Women live longer than men and are more likely to take time off to raise kids so you need to save earlier and more aggressively.

GIVE YOUR MONEY TLC AND WATCH IT GROW-When it comes to that general savings portion of your budget, your savings do more for you than any fabulous outfit every could. They give you independence. Just think of it as paying yourself first.

KNOW HOW MUCH TO SAVE-You need a budget and you need to set aside at least 5-10% of your take home pay. Even if you're living paycheck to paycheck and that seems impossible, remember the more the better but do what you can. The most important thing is to get in the habit of saving and the right place to put it.

A REGULAR SAVINGS ACCOUNT-What should you keep here? Enough money to cover at least three months' worth of expenses or saving you want immediate access to for a vacation etc. Half of all women ages 18 to 65 told an AARP survey that it would be a challenge to deal with an unexpected $1000 expense. having that cushion in an east to tap savings account means a fender bender or unanticipated medical bill won't throw you for aloop. Savings accounts don't earn huge interest rates but they're stable, safe places to put money for emergencies. You'll probably get the best deal if you start one online or in the same bank where you have a checking account. If you can get into the habit of saving in your twenties, by the time you are 30, you'll have something pretty good in your hands.

CDs OR MONEY MARKET ACCOUNTS-What do you keep here? Money that you won't need for at least 6 to 12 months but that you might need sometime in the next five years. These are good places to put extra money once you have your emergency fund established. Just know that while money market accounts and certificates of deposit earn greater interest than most savings accounts, they also have more restrictions. you'll pay a penalty if you pull money out early so make sure you have your cushion fund in your savings account set up first before attempting this account.

THE STOCK AND BOND MARKET-What do you keep here? Money you won't need for at least five years. This is where your long-term savings goes and yes you do need some of that. Many women say they are terrified of the stock market. Don't be! Sure the fluctuations of the market are risky but you have to keep in mind why you are investing. Long term this where you'll make the most money. What's more is research has shown that when women do invest in the market we earn slightly more on investments than med do, largely because we do it more conservatively. Young women should resist the urge to look at uneasy financial times as in the past year as an excuse no to get into the stock market. You should put the bulk of your investments in stock because the younger you are the more risk you can take. a smaller percentage of your savings should be in bonds, a safer investment than stocks. Talk to a financial planner or do your own research about the market. Your odds are better with exchange traded funds which are similar to mutual funds but without heavy fees, chosen by professionals.

DUMP THE DEBT THAT'S STRESSING YOU OUT-Ladies, listen up, there's a good chance your debt is keeping you from saving for retirement. That means one thing, you're got to get rid of it. We all want to look good, feel good and have a good time so we go ahead and charge things. The problem is we are hurting ourselves and our future in the end!

LEARN THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN GOOD AND BAD DEBT-Not all debt is created equal. If yous start a business and spend $2000 on a home office, it's an investment in yourself and your future-that's good debt. so are federal student loans, which get you an education so you can snag that higher paying job and for the most part, mortgages. The goal is to avoid bad debt like revolving, high interest situations where you aren't investing in anything but the bottom line of the credit card companies.

UNDERSTAND THE COST OF BAD DEBT-Aim to open your bill every month and see a previous balance of $0. The way interest payments work is horrifying. Look at the numbers. Say you have $10,000 worth of debt on a credit card with a 14 percent interest rate. If you make only the minimum payment on that debt, it will take you 15 years to pay it off and you will end up paying more than an additional $10,000 in interest alone.

STOP MAKING NEW DEBT-In other words, no using your credit cards while you're trying to pay off balances.

TRANSFER BALANCES ONTO LOWER-INTEREST CARDS-If you are paying crushing interest on your balances, transfer your debts to a lower-rate card. The rule is if your rate is 12 percent of higher it's time to shop around. Make sure you read the fine print though. A lot of credit cards offer low interest rate to lure in new customers only to have the rates skyrocket down the road. You can also call your credit card company and ask them to lower your rate. In today's economy a lot of them are willing to work with on this.

TAKE CONTROL OF YOUR CREDIT SCORE-The single largest indicator of your credit health is your credit, or FICO score. Your score is a number between 300 and 850 that tells landlords and mortgage lenders how likely you are to repay debts. The median is 723 so higher than that is your goal. One of the biggest factors used to determine your score is your debt to credit ratio.

ASK FOR HELP-If you can't manage alone, find a non profit credit counselor at nfcc.org, a nationally recognized group. They will create a payment plan for you and be your advocate with lenders. The majority of their counselors provide serves free, those who do charge have an average fee of less than $20. using one won't affect your credit. That's potentially lifesaving financial help for the price of a round of drinks. Nothing could be more worth it.


DO IGNORE TRENDS (SOMETIMES)-Natural makeup is never wrong. a little bit of foundation, a neutral shadow and some lip gloss is always chic adn groomed for day. That being said, for evening you shoudl dare more....red lipstick is the hottest trend that never goes out of style.

DON'T UNDERESTIMATE PONYTAILS-A straight-forward ponytail is perfect anytime. It's easy but very chic as long as it's not greasy...you know what I mean. Some gals feel they have to wear their hair down to 'go out'. Studies show that guys find ponytails sexy because it looks sexy and also looks like the girl isn't trying to hard.

DO SPRITZ NAKED-It feels so sensual to spray fragrance on bare skin. Try a dash of perfume on your cleavage or on your back.

DON'T GET STUCK IN A PERFUME RUT-Your personality changes according to your mood, so why let just one scent define you?

DO KNOW THE POWER OF LIPSTICK-On a woman's face, lipstick is the hero. the color you choose can change your whole appearance from natural to strong and dramatic.

DON'T EVER FORGET TO BE YOURSELF-There is nothing less attractive than someone who's trying too hard. The most important thing is to feel comfortable with yourself and your look. That's as true for makeup as it is for an evening gown.

DO KNOW THAT SMART IS ULTIMATELY SEXY-Brain power is a sexy feature that shows through from the inside out!


First do some quick prep! Bright colors only make flakes more obvious. Gently rub lips with a wet toothbrush and pat dry, then dab on a nongreasy lip balm, like Chapstick. TAKE YOUR TIME! Red lipstick is not a color you can slap on as you zip out the door. If you apply intense lipstick haphazardly it'll look like your mouth was doing something it shouldn't have. For lasting neatness, trace matching red lip liner along your mouth's natural line, soften the edge with a finger, then completely fill in lips with liner. Now dust powder on top, add lipstick with a tiny brush, blot and reapply. GO EASY ON THE SHINE! When you're wearing bright red lipstick you do not need to add more attention to your mouth. dot on clear gloss just in the middle of your lower lip. Don't be afraid to try it out before dark. Sheer reds are pretty during the day.

FAIR SKIN-If you have fair skin then coral-y reds look most beautiful on you; they add a shot of color but aren't overpowering.

MEDIUM SKIN-If you have medium skin then anything from true red to pinky-cranberry shades will work well with your golden undertones.

DARK SKIN-If you have dark skin then stick with deep, rich colors like burgundy or warm brick-super bright ones can seem to harsh.

Don't be scared to spend more then a few dollars on your red lipstick. Think of it as an investment like your favorite pair of jeans. Go to a make up counter and have a professional try on a few colors for you...that's what they're there for! Enjoy your red lipstick!

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This is for every woman, every night. You will start seeing a dramatic reduction in the visible signs of aging. Use new Advanced Night Repair and it will help continuously repair the appearance of past damage caused by every major environmental assault such as UV light, smoke, pollution and even emotional stress. If you want younger, healthier looking skin now and in the future, don't go a night without it. This has 20 patents worldwide and it costs $47.50 and it is worth every penny!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009


Here's some resolutions for 2010 that any woman can stick to!

1. Don't let a week go by without telling someone that you love them. Out loud. Pets count....this makes it super easy!

2. If you can't find something decent to watch on TV, turn it off.

3. Find out the dates of every election in your district (check out smartyvoter.org). Vote in all of them-and enjoy the feeling of getting involved.

4. Always read the kid a book!

5. All together now: this year there will be no drunk texting of exes!

6. Buy less! Am I really going to wear that pair of shoes? Am I really going to carry that bag?

7. You know those days when no one's around and you download that song that always makes you dance, and then you kill five minutes completely rocking it in your house? Make lots of days one of those days.

8. Buy a good decision piggy bank. Pay yourself a dollar every time you skip the third drink, go to be early or make the difficult phone call. At the end of the year buy yourself a good decision present! you earned it.

9. For every time he initiates it, initiate it more.

10. On January2, sit down take out a pen and a piece of paper and write down five reasons you would want to marry yourself. Doesn't that feel nice? Happy new year!


Leggings are even more popular this year than they were last year if you can believe it. We all want to have our own look and be a bit representative but there are rules and there is a time and a place for everything and this goes for leggings too. Here's a few idea to wear them with.....and don't forget leggings don't just mean black! Play with animal prints, red, purple, etc.

1. Zebra print leggings with a sequence dress which now is a long top, paired with some funky boots.

2. Black leggings with a tee and a long trench coat and a pair of ballet flats.

3. Leopard print leggings with a long white tank, pink tee and a jean jacket or a dressy jacket.

4. Red leggings with a white long sleeve tee and a yellow sports vest...don't forget a white visor and some high black heel boots to dress up the sports look.

5. Black leggings with a mini dress is always safe....curb the slut look and go for ballet flats instead of the heels you will be tempted to throw on.

6. Flowered leggings with a boy fit sweater, canvas sneakers and your grandpa's top hat.

7. Multi-colored leggings with a jean mini, cut up sweatshirt and our favorite ballet flats.

8. Tie-dyed leggings and with a tutu...yes I said a tutu...Sara Jessica Parker rocked one out in Sex in the city and so can you....of course you pair it up with a retro non matching sweater.

9. Leather looking leggings with a long tank and a short sweater

10. Your choice....have fun

Leggings look great on anyone if you pair them with the right top and shoes. They are not appropriate for work unless you are in a more casual environment or a trendy/fashion kind of place..then they're ok but still be conscious of what you pair them with...a dress shirt or jacket is cute.

There are a few things to avoid when experimenting with leggings. Although we do love prints.....don't go for the optical illusion thing with striped leggings and a plaid top. make sure they don't cut you off at the knee. Please don't pair leopard with satin and skip the sheer.


Saturday, November 14, 2009


There's a lot of things you can do for a healthier you! Here's some tips:

FIND A HABIT YOU CAN STICK WITH-We all know that exercise and healthy eating are the first things to go when we get busy, that's why developing good habits early is key. Everyone will find their perfect time and perfect workout that suits their lifestyle. For me, it's running. It's my escape time away from everyone, phones, Internet and just alone time for me. Ideally I squeeze in a few miles every morning and it gives me more energy through the day. Some days when I manage to get a day off I can head to the park and run trails and enjoy nature. Yoga is also at the top of my list. Especially a short PM yoga routine, allows me to sleep better and wake up feeling really centered and well rested.

KNOW THAT HEALTH CARE REFORM STARTS WITH YOU-Seventy-five percent of the $2.4 trillion spent in the U.S. every year on health care is for chronic diseases, most of them related to obesity and/or tobacco. These are conditions that can be changed. It isn't easy but every has an opportunity to eat more fruits and vegetables. If you can't run...walk. Making some of those choices is just really important.

USE SUNSCREEN DAILY-We know so much more now than we did when I was growing up, when I covered myself with baby oil and had a little foil reflector. I am just now starting to learn the importance of sunscreen and I will admit I am still guilty of not using it at times. I really have a hard time bringing myself to lather sunscreen on before I go for a run or a quick walk around the block with my dogs but I am getting better...baby steps. Melanoma kills.

NEVER FORGET THAT YOU HAVE A RIGHT TO UNDERSTAND YOUR OWN BODY-A lot of people never see their health records, and they have a 10 minute conversation with a doctor once a year who says, lose 5 pounds, exercise more, blah blah. You should ask your doctor what's in your file, everything from the results of your last blood test to diseases you may be at risk for because of family history. The more you know about what's actually occurring in your own body, the better off you are.

FIND YOUR OWN BALANCE-Balance is a challenge. You do better work if you have some balance in your life. It can't be all work and it can't be all play. Just like it can't be all sleep or no sleep. Find your balance. It's rewarding and make time for yourself...go ahead and pencil you in.

TAKE CARE OF YOUR BONES-The older you get the more prone you are to osteoporosis. You never know until it's too late if you're lacking in Vitamin D and calcium and make sure to do some weight bearing exercise.

DON'T BE COMPLACENT ABOUT YOUR SEXUAL HEALTH-You have only one body. Many STD's last a lifetime and can seriously threaten your health. you have a right and a personal obligation to be assertive about protecting yourself. It's OK to take your time to become sexually active, and if you are having sex it's OK to insist on taking precautions.

EVERY YEAR DO AT LEAST THREE THINGS FOR YOUR HEALTH-A regular physical exam, a gynecologic exam and a breast exam. No one likes any of them...just do it. It's three appointments out of a whole year, two if you combine the latter two.

EAT A GOOD BREAKFAST-You should always eat a good breakfast. It has been scientifically shown that breakfast make a difference, and if you have a good grounding with breakfast, it improves your performance the whole day and actually reduces your over all calorie intake.

TAKE CARE OF YOUR MENTAL HEALTH-Depression is not unusual and it's not something to be ashamed of. If you're feeling hopeless or helpless or anxious it's important to talk about that. And, know that your physical health make a difference in how you feel emotionally. diet and exercise are important to mental health. Take care of your whole body and you will notice the impact on your mood.

BACK AWAY FROM THE VENDING MACHINE-Try to pack your lunch or at least hit the grocery store and keep some healthy snacks in your bag if you don't have a fridge, even some granola or crackers are better to snack on than whatever is in your machine.

REMEMBER THAT STRESS DOESN'T LAST FOREVER-There are seasons to a person's life. There are the stressful times and the easy times. The stressful times even if it's a short period, they feel like they last forever but always tell yourself you got through the last pile of stress and you will make it through this one. I have been telling myself this one about a dozen times a day lately and I'll be happy when I get through issues at hand and I can look back and sigh and smile.

Skechers Shape Ups Shoes


With today's economy, a lot has changed with the way we shop and how we think about what we shop for. I know that I personally was making more money 10 years ago and never thought twice about anything I ever wanted to buy but this is not the case anymore.

Smart Shopper Tip 1-I WILL KNOW WHAT I OWN (including my socks!) There's nothing as liberating as weeding out your closet and here's how to do it: Group everything you own by type-dress, sweaters, pants, shoes, etc. Get rid of all the too big, too small, too outdated. Next look at the things you ARE keeping and evaluate which items give you confidence, fit perfect, make you feel good and take into account which labels fit the best. The labels that fit your body best may not be your 'favorite label' but the visual outcome is what's important. Take a mental note on things you may have duplicates of in category, like 10 simple black tank tops...chances are you don't need another one. You can donate your clothes to Goodwill, have a garage sale or list items on freecycle.org, an online giveaway site. Don't forget to sort out your makeup too. Dump it all on a flat surface then ditch any you've had for too long or any you haven't worn in awhile and chances are you wont. You may also find that you have 47 shades of pink lipstick and none are the right shade....in this case, you may need to finally seek guidance from that beauty consultant.

Smart Shopper Tip 2-I'LL SPEND WITHIN MY MEANS (See ya, credit card debt!) Yes, you can shop again. You just have to know what your budge is before you start. When the economy tanked, many women, whatever their money situation, simply stopped shopping. We are talking screeching halt! But now is the moment to examine your shop-phobia and see whether it's justified. If you have disposable income, it's OK to buy things you want and need. The average woman should spend no more than 5% of her posttax income on fashion and beauty items and services. I have recently this year started steering away from trendy labels and have found a love for thrift stores. It's the thrill of the hunt. Endless racks and then you find this vintage dress from the 50's no one else will ever have, pair it up with a pair of heeled Mary Janes or funky boots and you are a one of a kind look that you don't have to worry about being duplicated at any event you're going to. Write yourself a list. At the top of the list is the always wear that are missing in your closet now that you've so brilliantly organized your closet and makeup zones. Things like sharp black pants, a trim pencil skirt, a perfect white shirt, an interview ready suit, versatile pumps, a quality brush, hair straightener that doesn't fry your hair, etc. Essential things that never go out of style. Next on your list are those that will more signature who you are. Things that you'll never regret buying, insanely sexy jeans, sophisticated work dresses, highlights from a guru, a fancy face cream that really works. Have a 'lust' fund where you save up for items like these. You can even load money weekly on a prepaid debit card that way when you find that pair of jeans that transforms your body you have your 'lust' fund money with you. Remember, the goal is no more credit card debt. Don't forget to treat yourself once in awhile to those non practical but fun items too like a vintage cuffs, sparkly mini, whatever your urge happens to be

Smart Shopper Tip 3-I WILL BUY WHAT'S WORTH IT TO ME. Every woman is different with what we feel is an essential and what is worth the extra money. Long Black dress and short black cocktail dress always rate high on the list. Some women have to dress super conservative for work so they may find a super expensive gorgeous pair of heels is at the top of their want list. It could also be something simple like a gorgeous black eyeliner that wear right and stays put or a perfect lipstick. Point being what may seem silly to me may be the perfect thing for you to spend your lust fund on. It's your fund....you'll figure it out.

Smart Shopper Tip 4-BEFORE I BUY I'LL ASK MYSELF THESE QUESTIONS. Does this truly fit my body, not just the body I wish I had? If it doesn't fit just perfect now, chances are it never will and it will be a waste of money. Am I itching to put it on now? You want to feel that excitement of dying to rip off the tags and wear it now. If you're just lukewarm about the item, another good chance it wont get worn. Would someone who sees me on the street think, She looks great? When you spot someone in a great outfit, you can't help but take a second look. It's good to get noticed, because it builds confidence. Will I want to wear this next month, next season, next year? As I age a bit I'm leaning more toward pieces that flatter and will continue to flatter in the future. Think of clothes like you would your 401K, a long term investment.

Smart Shopper Tip 5-I'LL RE-WEAR AND REUSE MY STUFF WITH PRIDE! Whether you pay a little or a lot, true value is in how often you use what you buy. If you spend a large amount on a spectacular item that gets worn over and over again over the years, the price per wear goes lower and lower.

Smart Shopper Tip 6-SURE I'LL GET THE TRENDS FOR LESS! Look for the instyle trends at great prices and you can feel good about your spending. Don't be afraid to look on sale racks. I mean really, does anyone know if it was last month or last year's item for that matter? It's not like the trends years ago of rolled up jeans, or black jelly bracelets, MC hammer pants, etc. Time sensitive trends really aren't the thing anymore since it's basically an anything goes world now so so if you pay half price for that Abercrombie tee that looks just like the rest of their tees....will anyone really know?

Smart Shopper Tip 7-I'LL NEVER HAVE BUYER'S REMORSE AGAIN! Yes, it is possible. Just figure out why you make bad buys so you can learn to shop smarter. Everybody has one or two or four or six shopping weaknesses, they're part of our human wiring. Emotional processes in the brain are faster than cognitive processes. Therefore, your mind gets the 'love that' message long before it gets the 'don't need that' message. Some of us are suckers for a 40% off sign. Shoppers spend nearly 80% more at outlets than at regular malls. There's an easy fix for this, ask yourself if you would pay full price for this item. If you would, then go for it! Another shopping goof is you overbuy online. Web shopping is a siren call. Seems you couldn't live without it but who hasn't opened a UPS box and buried their head in their hands and wondered what you were thinking. What's worse is the chore of returning something often means you keep stuff you don't really love. The biggest shopping goof for women is we spend when we're blue. Just like emotional eating, there's emotional shopping. Research reveals that when people are sad, they'll actually pay more to obtain something than they would in a neutral state. Easy fix...do not enter the store when you're in a depressed state. Go take your dog to the park instead! I'm serious! You will end up with something you think you love and you'll wear once. Now go start cleaning out your closet and start your list!

Friday, November 13, 2009


You could be putting your skin through hell and not even know it. Congratulations! You lathered on sunscreen all summer but if you're about to pack away the SPF along with your flip-flops....don't! Fall's rays are just as likely as summer's to cause brown spots, wrinkles and skin cancer. Every morning apply a SPF 15 or above. Foundation with SPF isn't enough, especially since women typically spread on a super thin layer.

SKIN SPOILER 1-Going to Bed with Makeup On! A surprising number of women fall asleep without washing their face. Skipping it once a week is not a huge problem, coming home late from work and just collapsing into bed but doing it night after night can lead to clogged pores and breakouts. For those times when you're too tired to wash your face, keep a stash of cleansing wipes on your nightstand so you can swipe your face, throw away and go to sleep. Every other night you need to lather up nightly with a dime sized drop of cleanser and rinse it off with several good splashes of water. If you don't completely remove cleanser, it can clog pores. Residue may also prevent the active ingredients in creams from sinking in and doing their job.

SKIN SPOILER 2-Getting Squeaky Clean! Dermatologists say they're treating more and more women who use too many types of exfoliates-grainy scrubs, pees and home microdermabrasion kits-and reach for them too often. Scouring yourself too much you strip out natural oils, your skin produces extra to compensate. Exfoliating more than necessary can cause extended harm. You end up with re, flaky skin that's extra prone to sun damage and wrinkles. If your skin is normal, exfoliate just once a week. Oily or breakout-prone? Do it twice a week. If you're dry or sensitive, two times a month is plenty. No matter what, if a product burns or tingles, rinse it off.

SKIN SPOILER 3-Eating the Wrong Foods (or Eating too Little)! If you're starving yourself to fit into a new dress or regularly snacking on processed foods like chips and cookies instead of fruits and veggies, you're losing out on vitamins and nutrients. You don't have to be perfect all the time but for smooth clear skin you need a well rounded diet. Women are most lax about getting enough biotin and omega-3 in their diet, both of which are critical for healthy skin. I recommend whole grains, dairy foods and nuts. Also, get in lots of antioxidant rich produce including berries and spinach, they help your skin fight off damage. Plus....fill yourself up with the good stuff and you'll have less room for all that fatty salty sugary stuff no matter how much you like it.

SKIN SPOILER 4-Smoking Cigarettes! About 20% of women 18-24 smoke and it may be written all over their faces. A female smoker will have pronounced lines around her mouth and look much older than she is. Smoking decreases the flow of oxygen and increases the production of rogue molecules known as free radicals, both of which bring on sallowness and wrinkles...a.k.a. smoker's skin. Do yourself a favor....quit smoking! Getting happier in your own skin may help. Work out, eat healthier and talk through 'I'm going to gain weight if I quit smoking'. You wont gain weight if you don't want to. You will feel healthier and cherish your body more.

SKIN SPOILER 5-Skimping on Sleep! Between economy anxiety and increased workloads, women seem to be sleeping less. Beauty sleep is no myth. Our body sees a chronic lack of sleep as a state of emergency which causes it to produce stress hormones. They signal the body to divert oxygen and nutrients away from skin to major internal organs. When skin doesn't get that optimum fuel, it can break out and become dull with dark under eye circles and puffiness. There's no getting around it, aim for seven hours of sleep. For a morning boost, try Garner Nutritioniste Skin Renew Awakening Face Massager.

SKIN SPOILER 6-Gaining and Losing the Same 10 Pounds over and over! Weight gain and loss, especially when they're done quickly and repeatedly weaken the fibers of skin, making it proned to premature sagging, stretch marks and little lines. Even putting on and shedding as few as five pounds in rapidly can upset the body's hormone levels and trigger breakouts. If you're yo-yo dieted and your skin's got a sag, try a firming lotion. Most important, set a goal of losing no more than two pounds per week, a safe, skin friendly amount. Remember...slow and steady wins the race.

SKIN SPOILER 7-Mistaking Rosacea for Acne! It's easy to confuse rosacea's red patches, visible blood vessels and inflamed pimples with plain old acne. More women are being diagnosed with it now more than ever before. If you have any symptoms or if you have splotches that worsen after workouts, when you eat spicy food or drink alcohol or when you're under stress, see a dermatologist. Leave it to the professional.

SKIN SPOILER 8-Not Having Enough fun! Spend time with your friends, it's a proven stress buster. Studies show that stress weakens the barrier that protects skin from elements like pollution and the sun. When you break down the barrier, you put your skin at more risk for breakouts and wrinkles. Schedule yourself in some fun! It doesn't have to be with friends...i find a lot of fun taking my dogs to the dog park so I squeeze that in at least once a week and it's good for me and they're certainly not complaining. Sex is also a welcome prescription. During sex you release beta endorphins which have acne healing properties and also give skin a nice glow.


1. Chocolate-Women in a German study who downed a cocoa-rich drink daily-the equivalent of 3.5 ounces of dark chocolate for 12 weeks experienced less dryness. Their skin also had better blood flow, which pinks your cheeks, and was more resistant to sun damage, thanks to all the antioxidants.

2. Fruit Juice-It gets a bad rap for the sugar, but the antioxidant-packed kind, like cranberry and pomegranate juice, do skin good. So have a small glass or a Pomatini!

3. Oil-rich cleansers-They can help oily skin. Cleansers that contain emulsifying oils such as Vitamin E or Castor oil break down and dissolve dirt and oil without overdrying it like harsh cleansers can.

4. Sweat-I think it's funny how some women try to not sweat or workout but now quite to the point of sweating because they think sweat will cause breakouts. Perspiration is great for skin, it opens up pores, releases dirt and generally encourages skin to function properly.

5. French Fries-OK so they're not good for your skin but contrary to popular belief...french fries and greasy food doesn't directly cause breakouts!

Thursday, November 12, 2009


Here is your ultimate guide to do an expert makeup look without paying a professional $150.

STEP 1-Put on Primer and Foundation. Technically, primer is optional but pros use it. I use it if I know it's going to be a long day and I won't have time to primp myself or for an important evening out. If you use, your makeup will last all day. It creates a base for makeup to adhere to. smooth all over clean moisturized skin. My favorite is a makeup primer by Smashbox. If you use liquid foundation, spread it with a finger like it's a paintbrush. Start at your nose. Smear on cheeks, forehead and chin, blend with a sponge. If you're using powder foundation, apply it with a powder brush. I prefer minerals foundation. They blend with your skin and stay put are actually good for your skin. Buff it into skin in small circles, working from the center of your face out.

STEP 2-Conceal Dark Circles and Other Spots. Don't glop cover-up under your eyes, apply to only the darkest spots, usually the inner corners. To hide a pimple that shows through foundation, dot on matching concealer with a concealer brush. For brown spots, freckles or other discoloration, dab on more foundation with a concealer brush. Then bounce a sponge off the area to set it without removing any makeup.

STEP 3-Then Play up You Eyes (the subtle way). Dust pale, subtly shimmery shadow from last lines to brows with a sponge applicator or shadow brush. Do bone or pink if skin's light; taupe if it's dark. Define top and bottom lash lines with dark pencil or shadow applied with a smudger brush. Curly your eyelashes with a curler to make your eyes look more open. Put two coats of mascara on top lids; place the wand at base of lashes and wiggle side to side as you go up.

STEP 4-Now Apply blush to Flatter your Face Shape. To add fullness to a long face, swoosh pink blush onto the apples of cheeks, blend toward ears. To slim a round face, sweep pink blush behind the apples. The run matte bronzer beneath cheekbones and up toward ears. This is a contouring trick pros use all the time. Prefer creme blush? Apply it to the same spots as mentioned earlier with three fingers. Whatever your flush fix of choice, finish with a dusting of translucent powder, making big sweeps over your face with a powder face.

STEP 5-Last, Apply Lip Color so it LASTS. Slick on lip balm.. It smooths flakes and prevents color from sinking into lines and looking crackly later on. Blot excess with a tissue. Press on a neutral matte pink or brown lipstick with a fingertip starting in the center of lips. Add a second coat with a lip brush. Dab clear or pearly gloss in the center of your lower lip, an expert finishing touch; the reflection will make your mouth appear fuller.


No. 1-Smear on a bright lip color-try a pomegranate or berry lipstick. Or just put a pink or red gloss over whatever shade you have on.

No. 2-Sweep shimmery champagne highlighting powder onto cheekbones and brow bones.

No. 3-Tim your top and bottom lids with black liner; keep it thin.


POWER 1-To Fake Eight Hours of Sleep-pat a lightweight eye cream onto dark circles, then dab on pink or golden highlighter. The shimmer brightens the eye area and prevents chalkiness. Now follow with concealer, tap it onto the darkest part of the circle and blend.

POWER 2-To Camouflage a Bruise-There's no beauty law against using concealer on a banged up shin. Look for a product with a drier texture so it stays put and then blend well.

POWER 3-To Perfect your Eyeshadow-Shape a cay eye with shadow; then use a concealer pen to wipe up mistakes.

POWER 4-To Make a Pimple Disappear-Apply a concealer onto the red spot and extend it out slightly to form a small circle around the bump. Let it set and add a thin layer of foundation on top

Wednesday, November 11, 2009


Here's a list of 25 Amazing Gifts that also give back! Change the world one present at a time, every one of these people-pleasing picks supports a charity.

1. For the beach lover-Lilly Pulizer necklace, $48, lillypulitzer.com. Ten percent goes to Sea Web's Coral conservation campaign.

2. For your sister with the sweet tooth-Bella's classic collection fudge, $13 each, bellasconfections.com. Through December 31st, 25% goes to the American Cancer Society.

3. For your color loving cousin-Kate Spade New York mittens, $95, Kate Spade stores. Employs more than 200 women in Bosnia through Women for Women International.

4. For your workout buddy-Kor One water bottle, $30, korwater.com. One percent of annual proceeds goes to Kor's Thirst for Giving program.

5. For your Chic mom-helping handbags Tabitha bag, $245, tbact.org. Each bag sold provides 60 hours of care for an orphan in Bulgaria.

6. For the big kid-Feed 5 bear, $60, feedprojects.org. Supports Industrial Revelation to promote the fight against child hunger in east Africa.

7. For your Retro-Fabulous Friends-Sunglass Hut Artist Series by Maya Hayuk Hand painted sunglasses, $139 each, sunglasshut.com. 50% goes to OneSight to supply free vision care and eye wear for those in need. TAKE A MINUTE AND CHECK THESE OUT! THEY ARE SO FUNKY AND SO HOT..THEY LOOK LIKE CANDY ON YOUR SUNGLASSES!

8. For the Label Queen-Jimmy Choo Project PEP flip-flops, $95, jimmychoo.com. Twenty-five percent of proceeds goes to the Simelela Rape Centre in Cape Town, South Africa.

9. For your Zen Roommate-Ame & Lulu Kimono yoga bag, $60, ameandlulu.com. Through Dec 31, 10% goes to Grateful Nation to fund cancer care and research for women. THIS IS ON MY CHRISTMAS LIST!! IT'S SO PRETTY.

10. For the Techy Fashionista-Dell Inspiron Mini 10v, $299, dell.com. Each computer sold provides a day of antiretroviral treatment for 11 people living with HIV/AIDS.

11. For your sporty boyfriend-Rugby Ralph Lauren shirt, $98, and hat $45, rugby.com. 50% goes to the Match Rugby Fund, which give grants to community and education-oriented programs started by young people.

12. For your Nana-Tea Forte rejuvenation tea set, $42, stjude.org. All proceeds go to St. Jude Children's Research Hospital.

13. For your friend who's one of a kind-Personalize a pair of Converse Make Mine sneakers, $62, makeminered.com. 15% goes to the Global fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria.

14. For the creative recycler-Eye Pop Art's Mandala Record Clock, $62, worldofgood.com. World of Good supports fair-trade and Eco-friendly products. THIS IS A COOL CLOCK!

15. For anyone artsy-Kiehl's Limited Edition Creme de Corps, $27, kiehls.com. All proceeds go to Rx Art's between the lines project to distribute coloring books to pediatric hospitals across the nation.

16. For you BFF-Nana's H.E.L.P gold plated ring, $65, helpchildren.org. All proceeds go to H.E.L.P. Malawi's Nutritional Education program for children.

17. For the sophisticated boss-Mai Vietnamese Handicrafts coiled bamboo fruit bowl, $28, tenthousandvillages.com. Supports local artisans in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.

18. For the person who has everything-Charity gift cards. buy a card and your friend picks the charity! What a cool idea!

19. For your fave Glamour Gal-Smashbox Wish for the Perfect Palette, $59, ulta.com. Up to $25,000 from the sale of the Wish Holiday Collection goes to the Children's Miracle network to fund medical care and research for sick and injured children. THIS IS AN AMAZING DEAL ON THIS PRODUCT...I'M BUYING IT FOR MYSELF.

20. For the bookworm-Idea Sunnan solar desk lamp, $20, ikea.com. For every lamp sold, one will be give to a child in Pakistan. These lamps are fun colors and perfect for gift exchanges!

21. For the Project Runway Junkie-Laur Su fashion illustrations, $20 each, prismeradesigns.com. 10% goes to Fashion for All, which provides clothing and beauty products for low-income women.

22. For your Green minded guy-Alternative Apparel T-shirt, $10, alternativeapparel.com. All proceeds go to global Green to eliminate climate change. ANOTHER GREAT GIFT EXCHANGE IDEA.

23. For your coworkers-Cookie gift set, $25 for six, flourpotcookies.com. 20% goes to Alex's Lemonade Stand to help fight pediatric cancer

24. For the socially conscious Sommelier-Onehope wine, $19 per bottle, onehopewine.com. 50% goes to the cause designated on each bottle.

25. For the Treehugger-plant one for $25 through January 15, 2010 treegivers.com. The honoree receives a personalized certificate that says where her tree is!



You need food for fuel for energy for life. Starving yourself is ridiculous. Your body is a machine and needs to be treated like one. Here's 10 reasonable tips to help shed those 10 extra pounds.

1. Be Realistic-Experts advise against yo-yo dieting and so do I. It is ridiculous and dangerous to your health to slow down your metabolism or try cleanses or starvation diets to drop the weight. It has taken awhile for you to gain that weight and it will take you time to lose it. You have to give yourself time.

2. Remember food should always be pleasurable-Small indulgences are important even when you're trying to lose weight. If you have a favorite snack..no, you can't eat it everyday but allowing yourself to have a treat once in awhile is healthy and helps you actually stay on track. Opt for whole grains and smaller portions of carbs like pasta and rice. Don't' be too restrictive or you wont stick to your change in diet. Being too stringent leads to binges. Healthy weight loss doesn't mean giving up foods we love. If you love chocolate..have a dark chocolate Hershey's Kiss every day. It satisfies that urge and then you don't feel the need to overdo it.

3. Have Breakfast as soon as you get up-You want to jump-start your metabolism right away-eat within the first hour of waking up. You have to put fuel in your tank. Woman who eat a low-fat morning meal packed with protein and some whole grain carbohydrates lose weight quicker and may keep it off better than those who eat smaller low-carb or low-protein morning meals.

4. Cut back on alcohol-No one is saying you should axe booze during the holidays but after New Year's you may want to consider cutting quite a bit out. Those alcoholic calories can really add up fast. If you can't stop after just one, don't start.

5. Eat two small snacks a day-You are too busy to go hungry. You never want to be so hungry that you get a headache! Sometimes even a few crackers can serve the purpose. Snacking is good..it keeps your metabolism going. If you want to starve yourself and lie in bed all day and just drink Tabasco and lemon water, that's fine but I'm too busy for that and I'm sure you are too. So, in addition to three moderate meals, have one or two healthy snacks. I have a new addiction to a grapefruit topped with Agave nectar and cinnamon! You can sub the Agave for honey but I'm a Vegan so that's why I came up with this combo and it is soooo good. Aside from simply making your life more pleasant, eating low-calorie meals and snacks throughout the day keeps your metabolism running on high so you keep burning calories.

6. Cook at home most days-It's hard to do in party filled holidays but eating at home is a smart weight loss tool year round. Restaurant dishes usually have more calories and fat than what you make yourself. People often say they don't have the time to cook at home, but it can actually take more time to order and go pick up take out than it does to cook. To make things easier and faster during the busy workweek, do most of your chopping and prep on weekends, or whatever your day off is. Cut up your vegetables and put then in Tupperware in the refrigerator so that when you're cooking during the week you don't have to sit and chop onions and peel garlic...they're all ready to go. This way when you come home starving from work, life is much simpler when things are ready to be cooked. There's also a nice physical aspect when you cook...instead of watching TV, waiting for your food to come, you're actually moving around while you're cooking.

7. Use spices-add a lot of spices to your food. You want to feel like you're eating a wonderful meal-not something bland or spartan. Cayenne, ginger, sumac and thyme are my favorites. Texture is also great! Adding sunflower seeds or walnuts to a salad suddenly makes it not a 'salad' anymore...it's something much more wonderful.

8. Go heavy on the veggies-Learn to pile your plate with low-calorie, high volume foods like vegetables, fruits and lentils. The fiber from all of those plant foods takes longer to chew and digest than most processed foods; that extra time allows your stomach to fill up so you feel fuller. fiber also triggers the release of cholecystokinin, a hormone that makes you feel satisfied, so you may end up eating less later on.

9. Go for single-serving sweets-I am a desert person and as far as I'm concerned dinner is not complete until I have something sweet after. Go for a delicious lo-cal ice cream sandwich..I recommend the non-dairy ones. They are low in calories and already pre-packaged so the portion part is already done for you.

10. Exercise, exercise, exercise-think you're too busy to workout? Go for a quick run when you get off work, run up and down some stairs or grab your free weights. Even 30-45 minutes of cardio three to five days a week will help most women drop pounds. Adding a couple of hours a week of sweating is going to help blast fat!


Get through December without any regrets! Choose what you really crave. At a party buffet or holiday dinner, survey all the offerings before serving yourself. What usually happens is that you just start plopping things on your plate but then you see the things you really wanted so you just add that on too. Pretty soon your plate is piled way too high. Look things over, then have a reasonable portion of the one or two things that really entice you.

Always have a pre-party snack! You may think you want to save the calories for the party but showing up to an event hungry back fires. Have a piece of fruit and a big glass of water before heading to the party to help curve hunger.

Say NO to doggie bags! Everyone needs to learn the words 'no thank you' this time of year. You don't have to try the cookies your coworker made if you don't truly want to and you don't have to take home leftovers. When people take leftovers they feel like they must eat them or it's wasteful. many holiday foods are rich, so if you have them again and again, instead of once at Grandma's house, the calories add up.

Nix the guilt! If you do overindulge, just accept it and move on. It's like that saying 'What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas'. What ever happens at a party stays at a party and doesn't have to turn into a punishing starve the next day.

Make time for exercise! A lot of us don't work out because we're so busy during the holidays but that makes things worse. Exercise relieves stress; if you skip it, what does your outlet become? More food! If you move less you feel sluggish, but this is a time when you want to feel great! Even going for a brisk lunchtime walk three days a week can help. Enjoy your holidays!


Why do we as females think we have to be perfect for our guy to love us? Guys don't notice the hours we spend primping ourselves! Save yourself the time and your man will be more into you! It's not your boobs, butt or bank account! Guys want you to chill.

1. You don't have to miss out on creme brulee! Men love women of all shapes, with bodies and legs and soft things to hold on to and ti takes food to get that way. They think of your ribs as something that protects organs...they don't want to see them. Guys don't notice when you lose 5lbs because they don't notice things like that! They're idea of perfection is a little non-perfection.

2. You don't have to make his hobbies your hobbies and his life your life! Doing everything together is a tried and true path to resentment and breakups. It's good for relationships to spend time apart. You don't' have to pretend to like football or golf. Let him hang with his friends for this time and you hang with your friends...or give yourself some alone time and take a bubble bath. Then you have more things to talk about over breakfast! When you spend too much time together you don't have anything to talk about.

3. You don't have to become Jenna Jameson when the bedroom door shuts! Sure hot and crazy spontaneous sex is NECESSARY but sometimes the best sex is the simplest, no tricks. It's honest and passionate and it's more connecting. Sex isn't some game you win by constantly pushing yourself and your boundaries.

4. You don't have to look perfect! Guys DO care about how you look but sometimes they feel your naturalist look IS your best look. They are freaked out by eyelash curlers and don't at all understand their necessity. Guys don't' complain about you not wearing enough makeup...just the opposite. Sure it's OK to go for the smoked eye when you're going out but when you're having movie nights...opt for just some lip gloss. As for the hair, good luck finding a guy who notices chunky, buttery highlights and perfectly executed blowouts. They're not concerned with straight or curly, they are concerned with if they can run their fingers through it.

5. You don't have to be the daughter their parents never had! His parents are not your parents. Unless you spend ten year together or have given them grandchildren, you do not have to buy his mom a birthday present after you break up. You don't have to go overboard with affection, especially if it's fake. Being polite and being yourself is enough. Yes, it is appropriate to offer to help with dishes after dinner.

6. You don't have to spend money on lingerie! No-frills colorful fun cotton underwear says that woman knows she's hot and she doesn't have to convince anyone of it. Guys are already sold on boobs! You don't need a corset, a push up bra, cutlets or anything else...they already love what you have.....throw on a boy beater and you're set.

The most sexy quality any guy will tell you is our confidence so whatever you're wearing (or not wearing) feel sexy and you will be sexy!


Hooked to whatever you're watching on TV and can't bring yourself to stop watching long enough to workout? No problem! Follow this routine three to five times a week. You can even keep your fuzzy slippers on!!

1. SOFA SQUAT-works your butt and thigh. Sit on edge of couch with feet hip-width apart, knees aligned directly over ankles. Stand, place hands on hips, then bend knees and squat down to sit on couch, but let your butt only tap edge, return to standing. Do two sets of 15 reps.

2. CUSHION CRUNCH-works your abs and obliques. Lie on couch and straighten legs; extend arms overhead by ears. Lift left leg toward ceiling, keeping it straight, as you lift shoulders off couch and reach both hands for left toes, pause, then lower to start. Do 15 reps, switch legs and repeat. Do two sets.

3. SPLIT LUNGE-works your thighs and calves. Stand in front of couch; extend left leg back, resting ball of foot on couch, hands on hips. Bend right knee 90 degrees, don't let knee go past toes; press through heel and return to start. do 15 reps, switch legs and repeat. Do two sets.

4. INCLINE PUSH-UP-works your chest, arms and shoulders. Place hands shoulder-width apart on edge or arm of couch; walk feet back so legs are straight and you're up on toes. Bend elbows and lower chest toward couch; push back up. do as many as you can with abs pulled in and hips aligned. Rest and repeat.

5. REMOTE REAR FLY-works your back and shoulders. Lie face down on couch, left arm off edge and extended toward floor, holding the remote or a light weight, raise extended hand up and out to shoulder height, squeezing shoulder blades together; pause, lower to start. do 15 reps, switch sides and repeat. Do two sets.

Now, perhaps when your favorite show is done you can squeeze in a little cardio? Your four legged friend is sitting by the door waiting with his leash!!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009


In the cold months sometimes it gets harder to get motivate to do just about anything....I swear I feel my blood going into hibernation mode sometimes. Next time your brain starts screaming "Get me a Red Bull!!"....try these ideas instead.

1. Wear something bright-a new holiday dress, a cherry polish your fingers or toes-just looking at those could help you have a peppier day. You can even write on a red or pink paper. Surrounding yourself in color adds a little cheer in your life. Consider putting a bit of bright color in a room in your house you spend a lot of time in. Are you one of those people that play it safe and wear a lot of blacks or browns to work? That's fine, invest in a super fun, bright, crazy colored scarf and matching gloves! It will make you smile just putting them on to go outside!

2. Turn on a lamp-light sends your brain a message to wake up. Perfect for bleary mornings and mid-afternoon slumps. There has been studies that prove that exposure to bright light between noon and 4:00pm significantly reduced people's feelings of fatigue and sleepiness. What's better then a lamp? Step out into some real sunshine. Sure it's cold out but there's nothing like a walk on a cold day with plenty of sunshine! Take your four legged friend for a walk! If you're like me...I have no choice! Me and my dogs walk everyday, rain or shine, snow or sun but I love when I come in from the cold weather on a sunny day and my cheeks are all rosy and I have a glow.

3. Pat yourself on the back-this is a simple stretch to open the muscles in your chest so you can take deeper breaths and get more energizing oxygen. To do this, stand with feet shoulder-width apart, arms at sides. Swing left arm across your body, twisting your torso and head to the right and tap your right shoulder, allowing your right arm to swing out behind you. Switch sides, twisting torso and head left and swinging right arm across your body to tap your left shoulder. Repeat, going back and forth in a fluid motion for three minutes. It may sound silly but it works.

4. Take a five minute walk-yup I'm here on the walk again. Taking a five minute walk gives people up to two hours of increased energy. You can do this at work on your break or at home. Sitting there watching TV, trying to get motivation to get stuff done? Bundle up walk to the corner and back and it's just enough to kick start your mind into work mode.

5. Have sex!-this wont work on the job but if you need a pick-me-up, a quickie may be just the thing. Sex releases what is called a 'cocktail of happy hormones.'

Heath quickie-heart doctors say women should limit sugar intake to 6tsp a day; a can of regular soda has 8!

Eat more! Eat more things good for you that is! It's no secret we like to snack when it's cold and we're cooped up inside. I'm not making you eat celery either but instead of that bowl of ice cream that is just going to make you hungrier, how about some hummus or make some homemade guacamole? Popcorn, nuts or fruit is always great too. I share an apple with my two dogs every night. I cut it into tiny squares so it's snacking size and we all share it. It's a great snack and it's good for you!

P.S. Don't forget to go for a walk!!!!


The sexiest hair look you can do is the beautiful wave look...you know, the look that looks like it just fell that way but we all know you had to work at it! First do a blowout. Starting with a straight-ish hair gives you the style extra swing and you don't have to get it perfectly sleek, just straight and dry. Run volumizer through damp roots, flip your head over and start with the cool setting. There's less risk of heat damage this way. Then switch to 'hot' once your hair's mostly dry, bring your head back up and finish with a round brush softly tugging two inch sections up and away from your scalp.

Next step is to create your spirals. Mist on a light hairspray, then wrap three inch chunks of hair around a medium-barreled curling iron, holding it vertically for undone waves. Put shine serum on your fingers and rake through your hair to gently break up the curl. Your hands are your best comb! My little secret when my curl maybe is starting to fall later in the day....I put my hair in a funky bun and spray lightly with hairspray, give it a few minutes and shake it down...VOILA, you have your wave back.

* Try to remember to use planet-friendly products. Green formulas really work so why not do something good for the earth when you style your hair? And, don't forget to recycle your empties.

* Invest in good hot tools. I use a BaByliss dryer, it is gentle yet speedy and use ceramic items.

* Shampoo twice a week if possible, three times at the most!! Shampooing your hair less keeps your hair healthy. You can ward off the greasies with hair powder..this stuff is my best friend, especially because I'm a runner but the powder is amazing, it soaks up the oil and any odor. Blandi's makes a Pronto Dry Shampoo Spray and so does Bumble and Bumble.

* Condition, condition, condition! People are afraid it's going to flatten their hair, but that's not the case. Conditioning repairs damage and nourishes the roots.

Beauty Quickie-To knock out flyaways, spritz your brush with antistatic spray like static guard and run through your hair. Everyone knows in the cold months when your heat is ran in your house you are more likely to have your hair look like you rubbed it on a balloon. A tiny bit of antistatic spray goes a LONG way!

Have fun!

Monday, November 9, 2009


This workout routine combines strength moves with intervals of fat-blasting cardio to give your he sexy definition you want. Do it twice a week and for the best results do an additional 30 minutes of any cardio you like such as jogging, jumping rope, biking or fast walking. I prefer running myself...I am a runner after all and you feel amazing after a good run. All you need is a pair of dumbbells, a sturdy bench or chair and one or two fluffy pillows and a little space..your living room, bedroom, wherever you choose.

1. Elevated Single-Leg Lunge with Biceps Curl-works your legs, butt, abs, back and arms. First warm up with five minutes of cardio. Then, stand three to four feet in front of a bench or chair with your back to it. Hold a dumbbell in each hand, arms by sides, palms facing forward and lift left leg behind you and rest toes on bench. Next slowly bend right knee and lower into a lunge as you curl weights up toward shoulders. Lower arms and return to start leaving foot on bench. Do 10 reps, then switch legs. Repeat on both legs.

2. Wood-Chop-works your legs, butt, abs, back, arms and shoulders. Stand with fee hip-width apart, holding one weight with both hands. Bend knees and squat, bringing weight to floor outside left foot. Stand up, bringing weight close to and across body, then over right shoulder. Squat again, swinging weight down toward left foot in a chopping motion. Do 10 times then switch sides. Repeat.

3. Kneeling Row-works your back, shoulders and the backs of your arms. Stand with left side facing a bench or ottoman, holding a weight in right hand. Lean forward with back flat and rest left hand and left knee on bench or table or whatever, letting right arm hang down toward floor, palm facing in. slowly pull weight up by side, lower arm and repeat. Do 15 reps, switch sides and repeat. If you can't find a bench or anything to use I have done this simply on the floor. Do a second cardio interval of 5 minutes now.

4. Incline Chest Press-works your arms, chest and shoulders. Sit on floor with knees bend, feet flat. Lean back on a couple of pillows so your upper back is about a foot off floor. Hold a weight in each hand at your shoulders, palms facing forward. With abs engaged to support your back, press arms straight up and bring weights together, squeezing chest muscles, as shown. Bring weights back down; repeat. Do two sets of 15 reps.

5. Single-Leg Triceps Dip-works your thighs, abs, back and the backs of your arms. Sit on the floor with knees bent, feet flat. Place hands behind you, fingertips pointing toward feet; straighten arms to lift hips off floor and extend left leg up about 45 degrees. Then slowly bend elbows and lower butt toward floor, without letting it touch, pause then straighten arms to press back up. Do 15 reps then switch legs and repeat both sides.

6. Side Lunge with Shoulder Press-works your legs, butt, arms and shoulders. Stand with feet hip-width apart, holding a weight in each hand, elbows bent, dumbbells by shoulders, palms facing forward. Take a giant step to the left, bending left knee and lowering into a lunge, keeping right leg straight and toes pointing forward. Pressing with the heel of left foot, step back to start as you press left weight overhead. Do 10 times, then switch sides. Do another set on each side. Do a third 5 minute cardio blast here.

7. Mountain Climber-works your legs, butt, abs, back, arms, chest and shoulders-squat down and put your hands on floor, directly under shoulders. Pull belly in and hop feet behind you into a plank position up on your toes, with body in a straight line from head to heel. Keeping abs tight, hop right foot forward, bringing right knee in toward chest, then immediately switch sides, hopping left foot forward and right foot back. Do 20 times quickly and repeat.

8. Leg Lift-works your abs-lie on your back with hands in a V under your butt, legs straight up in the air and squeezed together. Pull belly in, exhale and lower legs until they are about six inches off floor, or as far as you can while still keeping abs tights and lower back flat. Hold for one count, then lift legs back up to start. Do two sets of 10 reps.


Here's an additional three exercises to help blast your belly fat...please don't forget the cardio

1. Double Crunch-lie on your back with knees bent 90 degrees and lifted, shins parallel to floor; rest hands behind head, elbows wide. Pull belly in and lift shoulder blades off floor as you bring knees in toward chest, curling pelvis toward shoulders as you lift, lower back to start and repeat. Do two sets of 15 reps.

2. Twisting Plank-get down in a raised push-up position but with your forearms on floor, shoulder width apart, palms flat, body in a straight line from head to heel. Pull belly in tight and rotate your body left, lowering left hip, pause, then return to the starting position and twist to the right. That's one full rep. Do two sets of 10 reps.

3. Roll-Down-sit on floor with knees bent and feet flat; reach arms forward, palms facing each other pull belly in, inhale and slowly roll yourself down to floor, one vertebra at a time, back curved like a C, until your shoulder blades touch the ground. Exhale and slowly roll back up to the starting position. Do two sets of 12 reps.

You don't have to spend hours in the gym to stay in shape. Take your dog for an extra walk every day for some extra cardio, squeeze your butt when you take the stairs at work, a little bit can go a long way and is better then nothing. Have fun!