Blog Posts by The chicks at TotalBeauty.com

  • 12 Shockingly Salty Foods to Avoid

    Shockingly Salty FoodsShockingly Salty FoodsSalt is so in right now -- as in, in everything you eat. As any healthcare professional will tell you, our sodium intake is out of control. Both the American Heart Association and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report that Americans are swilling as much as 3,600mg of the stuff a day -- more than double the recommended intake of 1,500mg max. We all might as well be walking around with our own personal salt licks. And surprise, surprise: all that salt is not doing your looks any favors.

    Besides contributing to heart disease, high blood pressure and obesity, to name a few, OD-ing on salt dehydrates skin, which means more wrinkles, puffy eyes and dark circles. It also can make you bloated, which -- we don't have to tell you -- will not help you squeeze into those skinny jeans.

    Cutting back on your salt intake isn't as easy as putting down the salt shaker, or avoiding the obvious culprits, like pretzels and chips. Salt is sneakier than you'd think, and it's hiding in

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  • How to Dye Your Curly Hair

    Dyeing Curly HairDyeing Curly Hair

    Curly girls have zillions of products tailored to their hair type -- shampoos, co-washes, conditioners, brushes, leave-ins ... you get the idea. But hair dyes are a different story, and naturally curly, kinky textured hair is notoriously tricky to color.

    "It's like caring for a baby's skin," says Mahisha Dellinger, founder of CURLS, a natural hair care brand for curly girls. It's fragile, requires special handling and products, and unlike your straight-haired cohorts who can grab box of dye from CVS or walk into any salon for color, curly-haired girls need a serious game plan before coloring.

    Here is everything you need to know before dyeing your curly hair.


    Even application isn't a breeze

    Here's why dyeing curly hair is tricky: it's difficult to get an even wash of color to hit every angle of those spiral-y curls and curly hair tends to be more porous, which means it's more fragile, dry and prone to breakage after coloring. Curl expert Morgan Willhite of Ouidad also

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  • 6 Cutting-Edge Beauty Breakthroughs You Haven't Heard About

    Snail slime facials and BB creams are so 2013. The new beauty trends for 2014 are so cutting edge, many aren't even available yet. You'll definitely want to keep an eye out for these technologies when they appear later this year, in 2015 and beyond.

    The biggest beauty breakthroughs include skin care developments like probiotics to treat acne (dermatologists are definitely getting on board), artificial spider silk and the brand new antioxidant, Tiron. In the hair care world, there's a company that analyzes and recommends an at-home hair color based on a photo you take with your smartphone. And in body care, it's all about the BB cream -- they have even more great ingredients than the BB you use on your face.

    Be the first to try one of these amazing new beauty trends for 2014, and we'll keep you posted when the other beauty breakthroughs are headed to a store near you.

    Beauty Breakthroughs Beauty Breakthroughs The New Breakthrough Acne Treatment

    Probiotics have been trendy in the diet world for a few years, but new

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  • The New Superfoods You Need in Your Diet, STAT

    Move over, acai and quinoa. Meet the new powerhouse grains, seeds and berries making health news headlines.

    "Let thy food be thy medicine, and thy medicine be thy food." So said Hippocrates, the father of modern medicine. With this list of superfoods, you can toss the contents of your medicine cabinet entirely, and rely on your kitchen pantry instead.

    What are superfoods? Oh, just your not-so-average edible plant matter packed with disease-battling, cancer-preventing, skin-saving miracle nutrients. To make our list, these foods had to have more than just street cred and a wispy celebrity endorsement -- these claims are backed by science and supported by health professionals.

    Click through to see which berries, grains and seeds joined the ranks of kale, quinoa, chia seeds and acai in the superfood echelon.

    Read: 6 Healthy Swaps for Your Favorite Treats

    AmaranthAmaranthAmaranth: The Cancer-Destroying Super Seed

    What it is:

    The gluten-free, grain-like seed you haven't tried.

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  • Astronaut Beauty: Gravity-Defying Fitness, Hair and Makeup Secrets

    Astronaut BeautyAstronaut Beauty

    You'd have to be living under a rock to not hear the Oscar buzz surrounding Alfonso Cuarón's film "Gravity" and Sandra Bullock's performance in it. To really nail the role (which she totally did), Bullock turned to astronaut Catherine "Cady" Coleman, who spent 180 days in outer space. A retired US Air Force colonel and 21-year NASA veteran, Coleman e-mailed and chatted with Bullock while on her third space mission, where she served as a flight engineer aboard the Russian Soyuz TMA-20 spacecraft and spent 159 days aboard the International Space Station (ISS) as the lead robotics and science officer.

    While Bullock spent all 91 stressful minutes of "Gravity" trying to get home in one piece, we were curious to know what else astronauts are up to on the ISS when they're not being separated from George Clooney and losing all connection with ground control. We chatted with Coleman to get an inside glimpse into what everyday activities we do down on earth are like up in space. Scroll to

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  • Cosmetic Chemists Spill the Secrets Your Favorite Brands Don't Want You to Know

    Cosmetic SecretsCosmetic Secrets

    Beauty brand loyalty is perhaps the fiercest of all types of devotion. When a girl finds her Holy Grail product, she buys enough of it to see her through the next decade, then prays it never, ever gets discontinued. Don't even think about telling her to try one of the generic dupes. No matter how many others say it's almost the same thing, good luck trying to convince a NARS Orgasm devotee that Milani Baked Blush in Luminoso is a worthy match.

    Unless, of course, you've got science to back it up. In search of beauty truths, we sat down with two cosmetic chemists who revealed the biggest secrets behind the products women use every single day. Can you handle the truth?



    Related: 15 Best Earth-Friendly Beauty Products

    Cosmetic Secrets


    You're Paying for Packaging, Not Product

    The old saying, "Don't judge a book by its cover," applies here. "Like a house has curb appeal, a product has what's called 'shelf appeal,'" explains Sandy Alcide, a freelance cosmetic chemist and founder of her own

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  • Beauty Sins: Which is Worse?

    Would you rather be four feet tall or eight feet tall? Deaf or blind? Poor and beautiful or rich and ugly? If you've ever played the game "Would You Rather," you've probably contemplated similar hypothetical dilemmas.


    Related: Why You Should Never Shop for Shoes At Night

    But when you encounter a real-life dilemma in your beauty routine, what option do you choose? And what are the consequences? We put together a list of some of the most common beauty sins (popping a pimple vs. concealing it, tanning beds vs. tanning outside and drinking booze vs. drinking liquor) and investigated just how bad they really are for your body. Think of it as Would You Rather?: Beauty Edition.

    Related: Adult Acne: 6 Things You Need to Know

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  • The New Game-Changers in Your Pursuit of Great Skin

    If you have breakouts, covering your face in black soot probably seems like a really terrible idea. But if that black soot happens to be active charcoal, it may be just the acne cure you've been looking for.


    Charcoal skin care products aren't exactly news. In Japan (here we go again with our Asian skin care trends), charcoal has been used as a cleansing ingredient for centuries, and in countries like India and Egypt, it's been used to treat wounds for even longer.

    Related: 7 Secrets to French Women's Flawless Skin


    "Charcoal is a powerhouse ingredient used for its cleaning power," says New York City dermatologist Sapna Westley, M.D. "It acts as a magnet to draw out and trap impurities." And active charcoal is surprisingly similar to the charcoal in your backyard grill -- it's simply heated, making it porous and more absorbent.

    Related: 14 Best Facial Masks


    Yes, it's counterintuitive to wash your face with something that looks so, well, dirty. But trust us on this

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  • No Detoxing Required: 10 Teas for a Happier, Healthier New Year

    Green tea is great for you, this we know. But there are also teas to help boost your burn at the gym, stop you from grabbing that candy bar at 3pm and even chill you out when you're feeling stressed. Rather than reaching for your morning coffee click through for our top 10 teas to help you drink your way slimmer, happier and healthier. No detoxing necessary.

    Related:
    Master the Art of Napping
    5 Healthy Things That Could Kill You
    Modern Woman Health Woes, Solved

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  • Beauty Buzzwords for Fall: Vamp, Punk, Shimmer

    Sure, summer is just getting into full swing, but we're already hearing whispers about the new makeup trends for Fall 2013. It's bold (brows), it's bright (skin), it's retro (dig out those Doc Martens), and it's what we'll be wearing come September when things start cooling off.



    RELATED: 10 Best From the Fall 2013 Makeup Collections



    But don't take our word for it. We went straight to the experts -- the makeup artists we trust most. These pros combed Fashion Week runways in New York, Milan, London, and Paris and spotted (or created) the headline-grabbing makeup trends you'll be seeing everywhere this fall.



    Some of the trends, like red lipstick, are classic fall staples. It's like the harbinger of cool weather -- we expect it, and fall in love with it year after year. But some of these news looks, like the colorful, winged eye makeup or hyper-contoured, glowing skin, are a complete 180 from recent makeup trends. To be honest, they seem a bit intimidating at first look, but all of

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