Friday, May 28, 2010

Lemon Juice & Sugar Facial

**Answer to Wednesday's Bible Quiz at the end of this post**
My best girlfriend Earen told me about this Kandee Johnson, a girl that has posted numerous videos on YouTube with make-up application tips, etc.  I finally took some time to watch some of them and I'm hooked!  One of the videos she posted was about the best facial you can do at home with lemons and sugar. 

Yesterday, I cut open a lemon, squeezed the juice on a cotton ball, sprinkled it with organic sugar and applied that to my face in circular motions.  My skin felt absolutely incredible!  In fact, I loved it so much that I even forced my husband to do it last night and his skin felt so soft and looks great!  Give yourself a facial this weekend and your face will thank you for it.  Watch Kandee's entertaining demonstration of this facial by clicking here.

*Answer to Wednesday's Bible Quiz:
The Greek word that means "Overcomer; Victor" is the name of a very popular shoe & clothing brand . . . it's logo is known as a "swoosh" . . . figure it out?  NIKE . . . the very same word used throughout the New Testament & numerous times in Revelation became the brand that the whole world would connect with shoes.  Next time you put on your NIKE shoes, remind yourself of the verse in Revelation 21:4, 6b &7 - "And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying.  There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away. . . And He said, ' . . . I will give of the fountain of the water of life freely to him who thirsts.  He who overcomes (NIKE)  shall inherit all things, and I will be his God and he shall be my Son.' " (NKJV)

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Sunless Tanning Secrets - Part 2

Now that you've purchased your sunless tanner, how do you put it on?  Here are the tips for application success . . .
 1) Shower and exfoliate your skin

2)Towel dry and apply a normal amount of body lotion - nothing too thick; something like Olay Body Quench
**Note:  Don't apply your deodorant until after you've applied the sunless tanner.

3)Depending on the type of sunless tanner, wait 1-3 minutes for lotion to soak into skin before applying sunless tanner (less time if you are using Bare Escentuals; more time if you are using L'oreal Sublime Bronze)

4)Divide your application areas into zones.  Example: Zone #1 - upper chest and neck; Zone #2 - both arms; Zone #3 - both legs

5)Apply sunless tanner to each zone and make sure you thoroughly rub it in and check for any streaks before moving to the next zone.  I highly recommend using a sunless tanner with some kind of instant bronzer (like the two I've recommended) so you can easily see where you've applied it and correct any mistakes immediately.  The following are some guidelines to help know how much sunless tanner to apply to each zone.  Remember, you will not achieve your full tan in one day.  The goal is to apply several thin, even coats to build your tan.  However, you also want to make sure you have enough sunless tanner to thoroughly cover each zone; adjust amounts accordingly.
  • Zone #1 - Upper chest and neck - I use a dallop about the size of a penny.  Rub evenly between your hands and rub on chest first and then use downward strokes to apply to the neck starting just below the jaw line.  Don't forget the back of your neck too . . . especially if you have short hair.
  • Zone #2 - Both Arms - I use two nickel size dallops.  Rub evenly between your hands and work into left arm using circular motions, starting at the shoulder and working down to the wrists.  Try to go lightly over the elbow and wrist; lightly brush onto the back of your hand so you don't end up with a hard line where your wrist and hand meet.  Don't forget the under side of your arm and back part of your shoulder.
  • Zone #3 - Both Legs - I use two penny size dallops for each leg and that is enough to tan from about mid-thigh to my feet.  On the legs you want to work one leg at a time and rub first into the calf area and then the thigh area.  Then apply to the sides and back of knee and use downward strokes over the kneecap.  Stop just above the ankle area and blend thoroughly.  Then brush your hands lightly over the top of your feet and up your ankle with remaining amount of sunless tanner on your hands.  Ankles, feet and knees really grab color so it's best to go lightly over these areas but don't avoid them all together.
6)Wash your hands thoroughly, being careful not to splash on your arms.  Dry hands and lightly brush the back of your wrist and hand with the washcloth/towel to help blur the tanning line. Take a damp washcloth and wipe off your elbows.

7)Allow sunless tanner to dry while you put on your makeup and style your hair.  This should give you at least 20-30 minutes of good drying time.  When you dress, remember to wear loose fitting clothes or shorts and a tank top that will allow your tan to completely dry without being rubbed off on your clothes. 

Have fun watching your color develop throughout the day.  Practice makes perfect!  At the end of the day, look over your tan and see if there are any areas that you missed or didn't rub in evenly and fix those mistakes when you apply it the next day.  Repeat this process for at least 3-4 days in a row and you'll have a nice golden tan.  Once you are a tan as you want to be, apply tanner every 2-3 days to keep up the color.
Tanning "from the bottle" really can be easy!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Sunless Tanning Secrets - Part 1

Last Friday I wrote about my love for being tan and I promised to share the secrets of sunless tanning that I have learned along the way.  Today I'll share some of the dos and don'ts and prepping your skin for the application.  Next Monday, I'll tell you how to apply it. So without further ado . . .
  1. Best application time:  Morning after showering and exfoliating the skin.
  2. Despite what the bottle says, sunless tanner always goes on better and absorbs more quickly if you apply a thin layer of lotion first.  Lotion needs to be one that absorbs into the skin fairly quickly (I love Olay Body Quench).
  3. It will take 3-4 days in a row of application to build up to a deep glow.  Then you can maintain your glow by applying it every 1-3 days (depending on how tan you want to be).  I recommend doing a good exfoliating of your skin once a week.  After you do, apply the sunless tanner for 2 days in a row to build back your tan.
  4. On the days that you are "tanning", apply it and wait as long as you can before getting dressed . . . 20-30 minutes at least. 
  5. On tanning day(s), select clothes that will help keep your lotion from getting rubbed off and allow for maximum drying time.  For example, wear a sleeveless shirt/tank top and shorts or crop pants.  If it's a chilly day, go for a soft, loose fitting shirt and jeans/pants that won't rub your skin too much during the day.
  6. Also, make sure you are not planning to go and water plants or get splashed pool side right after you've put on your sunless tanner.  If you are "tanning", and water splashes on the skin, it will wash a little of the sunless tanner away in spots . . . not a good look unless you want to be a cheetah :-) 
  7. Remember that once you are "tan", you will still need to protect your skin if you will be out in the sun for long periods of time.  It's easy to think, "oh, I've got a good tan so I won't burn now" - wrong!  This is not that kind of a tan!  You will still burn under your tan so cover up or use sunscreen!
Now, I know that all sounds like a lot of trouble but once you get in a routine, you will be amazed at how easy sunless tanning really can be and you will be rewarded with a beautiful tan anytime of the year without harming your skin.  Plus, think of how many hours it takes to build and maintain a tan in a tanning salon or by laying out at the pool!

Friday, May 14, 2010

Tan Without the Sun

***Answer to this week's Bible trivia is at the end of this post ***
Years ago, I worked out with a friend who's slogan was, "whatever you have always looks better tan."  I have to say that I completely agree with her!  However, after having a few "beauty marks" removed by the dermatologist, I decided maybe tanning in salons and by the pool wasn't the best way to achieve a tan and started testing out sunless tanners.   I knew I found the right ones when someone at church remarked that I had way too much time on my hands to be able to lay out in the sun for hours working on my beautiful tan.  Ahhh . . . if they only knew that now I tan from the bottle!

There are a lot of sunless tanners out there and they all claim to be streak-free and that they won't turn you orange.  However, after a lot of trial and error, I've learned that not all sunless tanners are created equal.  Here are my 2 favorites that I use on a regular basis:
*Faux Tan - by Bare Escentuals
*Sublime Bronze Sunless Tanner - Deep Natural Tan - by Loreal
If you have tried sunless tanners in the past and come out looking orange, try Bare Escentuals Faux Tan . . . there is absolutely NO orange undertone whatsoever.  It's more expensive than Loreal or others offered at Walmart but it gives you a nice immediate brown glow, dries very quickly and darkens to a nice true tan color by the end of the day.  In a later post I will tell you the secrets of application that I've learned along the way . . . stay tuned!  Bonus Tip:  If you are a QVC shopper, the Faux Tan by Bare Escentuals will be featured late tonight and tomorrow and will be offered in their XLarge size that is only available twice a year. . . just a little tip for you bargain hunters out there :-)

*Answer to this week's Bible Trivia:
The answer is 2  . . . out of approx 1-3 million Israelites (over the age of 20) that left Egypt, only Joshua & Caleb were allowed to enter the Promised Land.  Because of the Israelites disobedience and lack of faith, the Lord refused to allow them to enter the Promised Land.  Read about it in Numbers 1:44-46 & 14:29-30.  Then read Galatians 5:16-21 . . . see any connections?

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Bible Trivia Wednesday

Here's this week's trivia question: 
Of the 1-3 million Israelites that were age 20 years or older and were part of the Exodus from Egypt, how many entered the promised land?

Monday, May 10, 2010

Return Hasseling

Today I was reminded of a valuable lesson when shopping online. . . make sure to know the return policy and how much trouble and expense it will be to do the return before clicking that "Confirm Order" button.

Since I live in such a small town, I LOVE the ability to shop online.  It saves me from driving long distances especially for my beloved cosmetics.  However, after today, I will be much more cautious about who I purchase cosmetics from online, especially if it's a color I'm not sure about.  I'm a huge fan of Bare Escentuals and it's the main staple in my makeup routine.  It's available at various retailers including Macy's and Sephora.  The lesson learned today though is that Bare Escentuals makes it really difficult and costly to exchange something that you purchased online if it's not the right color.  I was told that I would be responsible for shipping costs both ways - returning my item and the shipping out of the exchanged item to me.  Plus, because of the special that was being run at the time of my purchase (a reduced price for purchasing a lip liner, lip gloss & lipstick), I would have to send back the liner & gloss, even though I am very happy with them, along with the lipstick.  Then they would send the liner & gloss back with my new liptstick color.  That made no business sense to me whatsoever . . . see some return hassling here?  There is a slight gimmer of hope that I may still be able to exchange the lipstick I bought at one of their boutiques (an hour away) but it's up to each individual boutique to make their own exchange policy about products bought online. 

Sephora on the other hand has the most amazing return policy ever!  When you purchase on-line, you have the option of returning/exchanging the product at their store or you can return it through the mail, FOR FREE, by using the easy return label included with your order.  How easy is that?! 

I will still order from Bare Escentuals online but I will only order colors & products that I KNOW will work and that I might possibly have to return.  Hopefully you all will be saved from "return hassling" by learning from my mistake :-)

Friday, May 7, 2010

What would YOU do for a Klondike Bar?

***Answer to this week's Bible trivia is at the end of this post ***
As the weather heats up, I start craving that dish of ice cream in the evening.  Maybe some of you have no problem sticking to that 1/2 cup serving but I feel like a 1/2 cup is just a tease.  The problem comes when you look at the calories and realize that even if you get something "low fat", like frozen yogurt, you are still banking 90-130 calories per serving.  If you like the "good stuff" with chocolate carmel pieces or brownie chunks . . . forget that diet!  You are talking 250-280 calories per serving (remember, that's a tiny 1/2 cup).  So what did I do with that ice cream craving?

I happened to see Klondike Bars one day when I was shopping.  I almost didn't even give them a second thought because I assumed they were like 500 calories because they are so rich and have a great thick layer of chocolate coating.  Well, guess what?  An entire Klondike Bar is only 240-270 calories (depending on whether it's Double Chocolate, Vanilla or Reese's).  They are so rich that I know there is no way I could polish off two in one sitting.  For me this is a great way to get my ice cream and chocolate fix and still keep the calories under control.  I've now realized why the commercial asks "What would you do for a Klondike Bar?" because they really are wonderful!

Bible Trivia Answer:  Jacob was . . . . 77 years old!  Hard to believe?  Genesis 27:1-2 says that Isaac was old & thought he was near death so he wanted to give the blessing to Esau before he died.  We know that Isaac lives a total of 180 years (Genesis 35:28).  According to Bible scholars, Isaac was 137 years old in Genesis 27.  Jacob and Esau were born when Isaac was 60 years old (Genesis 25:26).  So if we do the math and combine what we know in the written text with what scholars of the Bible have calculated, we find out that Jacob was 77 years old!  Did you ever picture Jacob to be 77 years old at this point?  I know I didn't.  Not only was he still unmarried but he was still living at home :)

Bible Trivia - Jacob & Esau

OK, so this trivia question comes a little late this week . . . but here it is . . .

How old was Jacob when Rebekah formulated the plan to help him "steal" his father's blessing from his brother Esau?  This is probably a story you've heard a dozen or more times so before you look it up think how old you have always pictured Jacob to be at this point. . . answer is in the next post.

Monday, May 3, 2010

When things get sticky...

Ever heard of or tried Reynolds "Easy Release Non-Stick" Foil?  When it first came out, the commercial featured two ladies following behind a big truck with a picture of cinnamon rolls or sticky buns and they were instantly enlightened to the idea of a foil for "when things get sticky."  I have to say that I LOVE the stuff!  It lives up to it's claims . . .

I use it quite often in my toaster oven - melting cheese on my nachos or on a pita or bagel for veggie sandwiches, etc.  The melted cheese just slides right off the foil along with the rest of the food.  The biggest test of the "non-stick" claim came when I was making wonderful peanut brittle in my microwave (EASY recipe from Andre . . . I promise to share it with my readers around the holidays :-).  I simply lined a cookie sheet with the Non-Stick foil and poured the peanut brittle on the foil to cool.  After completely cooling, the foil easily peeled off and saved me hours of scrubbing on my cookie sheet.  Give it a try next time you cook something sticky!