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  • We think a lot about what we put on our faces—creams, lotions, makeup—but not as much about how we take it off. Soap and water or drugstore cleanser is all you need, right? How complicated can it be? But how we clean our skin is just as important as what we put on it—especially over 40, when it’s extra important to respect the natural balance of our skin. 1.Think warm, not hot. Your skin’s natural oils are formulated by nature to nourish your skin perfectly. For women over 40, these oils are precious—they keep our skin supple, nourished, and elastic. Super-hot water strips most of those oils away. Use warm (or even cool!) water to preserve your skin’s natural hydration while you wash off the grime of the day. Bonus: warm water uses less energy than hot, so your skin routine will automatically be more eco-friendly. 2. Get your makeup remover in the grocery aisle. Soap can be harsh and drying. But special makeup removers can be pricey—should it really take that much money just to clean your face? But there’s a trick: organic coconut oil. It gets every last stitch of makeup off (even mascara!), hydrates your skin beautifully, and at about eight bucks for a big jar, costs the same as soap. It’s also antimicrobial and chock full of antioxidants. 3. Exfoliate- but not too often. Exfoliation gets rid of dead skin cells and dirt buildup, so your skin stays bright and your pores clear. Steer clear of overly harsh exfoliants and too much elbow grease—exfoliating too vigorously can irritate your skin—and strip away those great natural oils. Three times a week is plenty. And hit that grocery aisle again! You can make a great, skin-nourishing exfoliating scrub from honey, granulated sugar, and milk. 4. Don’t skip a night! Over the course of a day, our skin absorbs tons of chemicals and toxins from the world around us. Tempting as it may be to just fall into bed after a long, busy day, your skin wants to be clean so it can regenerate overnight. If you do nothing else on the way to a great night’s sleep, make sure and clean your skin. Removing the day’s toxins and dirt will allow your skin to breathe and rejuvenate naturally as you dream.

    097: Tips On Skin Cleansing

  • When I was about 32 I started seeing signs of my own aging. It showed up in the form of gray hair, and at first, I wasn’t too freaked out about it because it wasn’t a whole lot.

    But by the time I was 44, it had grown in all around my face, and I wasn’t gonna have it. I went straight to the salon and got a dye job.

    But at the same time, I realized that as I was getting older, I was becoming happier, healthier, wiser, and more authentically me. And as I talked to my friends, I realized it was happening to them too.

    We were realizing that getting older meant getting better—not worse. And then I realized I was covering the very sign of my own aging, and right then I stopped dyeing my hair and I never looked back.

    And guess what happened right after that? I was approached on the street by a casting agent and asked to model for a worldwide fashion campaign.

    It was like the universe literally told me: stop covering up, embrace your age, and here’s what happens. Your beauty becomes visible to the world.

    The same thing can happen for you. But first, you have to transform some of the negative ideas about women and age that society has planted in your head.

    I promise you, when you do, it will show on your face.

    Here’s how:

    1- Remember how you felt about getting older when you were a kid!

    Remember how excited and proud you felt about getting older when you were little?

    When we were kids, we’d claim every last bit of age that we possibly could—“I’m nine and a half!” “I’m seven and three quarters!” When we were little, getting “older” meant getting “bigger.”

    As in more knowledge, more independence, more mastery, more adventures. Guess what? It still does. As we get older, our capacities expand.

    We all knew that truth when we were kids. Remind yourself!

    2- Re-draw your graph of life.

    You know, that one that’s in the shape of a mountain. Supposedly, life goes uphill until we hit this imaginary peak called “the prime of life,” and then it’s all downhill from there.

    But who drew that picture? It certainly doesn’t match my experience or that of the women I know.

    We just keep expanding! My graph of life feels more like an uphill journey all the way. So I re-drew my own picture. You can too.

    3- Look at your language.

    Language is powerful. The words we use to describe ourselves carry all sorts of emotional associations we don’t even think about.

    But words matter. When I started calling my “gray hair” silver, all of a sudden my feelings about it—and what I was communicating to the world about my own aging—totally changed.

    “Gray hair” is drab, a drag; something thousands of advertisements have spent thousands of hours telling us to cover up. “Silver” is shiny, precious, beautiful, and a prize.

    Pay attention to how you talk about yourself! The tiniest changes in language can totally reshape the way you see yourself—and the way the world sees you.

    Give yourself the value and recognition that you deserve---and you’ll find that reflected back to you tenfold.

    096: Feeling Gorgeous At Any Age

  • In all my years working in the fashion industry, popular opinion of undereye circles has changed a lot. As a makeup artist, I remember the days when models wanted me to put dark circles under their eyes—yes, on purpose!--because of how smokey and sexy it made them look! But many fans have asked me how best to conceal them, so if you’re concerned about dark circles, here’s my advice for you: 1. See your doctor! Often, undereye circles—especially if they’re new, or have changed in appearance—can be a sign of something going on inside your body. At BOOM!, we believe that the inside is as important as the outside and that the best way to cultivate outer beauty is to make sure your whole body is thriving. Your doc will want to check your hemoglobin, iron, and vitamin K levels, as well as test you for food allergies that can cause dark circles and irritation. 2. Check your stress levels. Once you’ve ruled out medical causes, check in with how you’ve been treating your body. Sleepiness causing dark circles isn’t just an old wives’ tale---it’s scientifically proven! When your body is tired, it produces a lot more of the “stress hormone” cortisol—an adrenalizing hormone that jacks up your system and helps you stay awake. Cortisol increases the volume of the blood in your body, causing your blood vessels (including the ones below your eyes) to expand. Dark circles are primarily caused by blood vessels showing through the delicate skin beneath your eyes---so when those blood vessels expand, those circles look darker. Make sure you’re getting enough sleep for your body to feel relaxed and rested. (And for those crunch times when that’s totally impossible, try and squeeze in a ten-minute meditation each day! That can do as much to reduce stress hormones as an extra hour of sleep). 3. Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate. The skin under your eyes is some of the thinnest on your body---and when you don’t drink enough water, it becomes even thinner. Most of us walk around mildly dehydrated and don’t even know it—especially if we drink coffee every morning. Make sure you drink ten to twelve glasses of water minimum per day—and more if you ingest caffeine or alcohol! Speaking of alcohol---drinking it is the quickest way to dry out your skin. Try to reduce consumption to a couple glasses a week—and if you do drink, add at least 48 ounces of water (that’s six extra glasses!) before you go to bed. 4. Try natural home remedies. Nature is full of stuff that’s incredibly soothing to the delicate skin beneath your eyes. Raw honey has amazing anti-inflammatory and hydrating properties; dab a bit under your eyes before bed and let it soak in overnight. Cucumber slices are a great, cooling poultice for tired eyes, and they have anti-inflammatory effects as well. Black teabags can reduce puffiness---cool them off in the fridge once you’ve used them, and recycle them at the end of the day to soothe your eyes! And avocado---a miracle food full of vitamin E and omega-3s—makes an amazing eye mask, especially mixed with a couple drops of almond oil. 5. Cover delicately! The skin under your eyes is incredibly thin and delicate. Heavy concealers and foundations will overwhelm this delicate skin, and while they might lighten the appearance of dark circles, they’ll also emphasize whatever texture is there, whether that’s fine lines, deeper wrinkles, or dry skin. When you use heavy concealers, instead of seeing your naturally gorgeous skin, the world will just see makeup. The “hide and conceal” approach really doesn’t work on the undereye area. So if you do use concealer here, make sure it’s a light, hydrating formula that allows your skin’s natural radiance to shine through instead of “masking” what’s there. You might find that a natural, slightly tinted moisturizer a shade lighter than usual is more than enough. A lot of us have dark circles and are concerned by the way they look. But here at BOOM, we believe that skin is at its most gorgeous and radiant when it's healthy, not when it’s hidden. I’ve learned to love the variations in my skin tone---because when you stop trying to hide your skin, what people really notice is your glow. Before you use concealer to try to cover up your circles, I recommend you watch the short video that led to this post:

    095: Tips For Under Eye Circles

  • Our culture is inundated with messages about women and aging—and all of them perpetuate the same myth: that we diminish with age. It’s the subtext in all the magazines, all the advertisements, in Hollywood movies and on TV: as you get older, you become less beautiful, less vital, less sexy. This myth makes a lot of companies a lot of money. All those folks selling “anti-aging” cosmetics, “anti-wrinkle” skin creams, hair dyes that “hide your grays”---they all profit handsomely from our feelings of insecurity about getting older. These feelings are based in ageism—the idea that age is less valuable than youth; that younger people are more alive, more beautiful, sexier and more interesting than older people. It’s one thing to notice these messages when we see them in the media, or even to recognize when someone says something ageist to us like, “Wow! You don’t look (insert your age here)---you look great!” But it’s a lot trickier to notice when we commit ageism against ourselves.We’ve absorbed these messages from the media and advertisers for years—so we often don’t even notice how they’ve influenced the ways we think about ourselves every day. But we can start. We can catch ourselves, in the moment, when we’re being ageist toward ourselves—we can change the way we talk to ourselves. And when we change the way we talk to ourselves, we change the way we feel. As we change the way we feel---we change the way we act, the way we carry ourselves, and even the way we appear to others. We become more confident, more magnetic, more comfortable in our own skin—which makes us more attractive. Here are some ways I’ve learned to stop being ageist against myself---to treat myself in a way that’s in alignment with my own philosophy, instead of the messages I’ve absorbed from outside. As I’ve practiced these things, I’ve found myself feeling so much happier—more vital, more beautiful, more confident. I bet you will too. Pay attention to your thoughts when you look in the mirror. We greet ourselves in the mirror every morning. What happens when you see your reflection and you notice a sun spot or a new crow’s foot line? Do you say to yourself, “Ugh, that’s bad; that’s no good”? Do you immediately start thinking about what you’re going to do to fix it? I know I’ve done that—plenty. But what would happen if you saw that new little smile line in the mirror one morning and you said to yourself, “Wow! Look at that—you can see what my eyes do when I laugh!” Or “I earned that one.” Or even—imagine!—“Wow, that’s gorgeous.” Practice saying it even if you don’t believe it yet. It can be tough to push back against messages we’ve spent decades absorbing. None of us are going to just magically be able to look at a new wrinkle and go, “Wow! Sexy!” But every time we repeat something to ourselves, we reinforce it. So if you keep repeating, Ugh, a wrinkle; ack, my skin’s a little crepey; yuck, I don’t like those new grays, you’re going to reinforce the idea that those things about yourself are bad, that you should feel anxious and insecure about them. But if you practice talking to yourself differently—saying wow, look at that beautiful, elegant line—whether or not you actually believe it yet—you start giving yourself a different message. After a while, if you keep reinforcing that new message, you’ll find you start to feel a lot better about yourself.

    094: Ageism In Our Culture

It's About Women, It's about beauty, It's about time

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