Blog Posts by Allure Daily Beauty Reporter

  • How Much Skin is Too Much Skin?

    It may be hard for most of us to believe this time of year, but it is warm in other parts of the world. Take Australia, for example, where a U.S. Marine seems to have offended a lot of people with a letter to a local newspaper complaining about the skimpy clothing he saw women wearing out at night.

    Captain John Campbell sparked controversy with admonishments such as: "It's about having standards, ladies," and "What are standards? Well, it can begin by dressing in a manner that leaves something to the imagination, to say the least."

    17 Bad Skin Habits to Break

    The newspaper and the U.S. Consulate have not, incidentally, been able to find a U.S. Marine serving by this name in Australia. But with angry responses to the letter-like "Put it where the sun doesn't shine"-we had to ask what you think. It it anybody's business how much skin a woman shows? Or is public exhibitionism kind of out of control these days?

    More from Allure:

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  • Could Self-Hypnosis Be the Secret to Losing Weight?

    Did you put on pounds over the holidays? Or make a New Year's resolution to get fit? Since diet and fitness are on everyone's mind this time of year, every Wednesday in January, we'll be bringing you special guest bloggers: experts in nutrition, diet, and fitness.

    Today, Jana Klauer, an internist and author of The Park Avenue Nutritionist's Plan (St. Martin's Press), explains one unbelievably simple way to increase the odds you'll meet your diet goals: self-hypnosis.

    Often excess weight and negative body image go hand in hand. Hypnosis brings together the visualization of a slender body and the importance of setting a healthy goal. Here's how to do it on your own.

    • Sit or lie somewhere quiet and peaceful. Turn off your Blackberry and the ringer on your telephone.
    • Take a deep breath, hold it for a few seconds, and then exhale. Repeat twice, each time relaxing more deeply and allowing stress to leave your body. Tell yourself, "I am in a safe place of peace and relaxation. My
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  • How to Return and Regift with Style

    While giving and receiving gifts during the holidays is the fun part, we're bound to receive (graciously, of course) a couple gifts that don't work. Rather than letting them collect dust at the bottom of your closet, here's how to return-and re-gift the ones that were not on your wish list. We asked Jaye Hersh, owner of the Hollywood boutique Intuition whose clients include Lindsay Lohan and Jessica Simpson.

    Consider the source. If you anticipate that you might not want to hold on to something, keep the original packaging as intact as possible. Take care when opening the gift so it's easy to reassemble later. For instance, if there's tissue that's closed with a sticker, slide the item out without tearing the seal.

    Related: How to Give a Personal Gift

    Make the most of it. If you're taking something back to a store, do it quickly-things get marked down fast. The best time for making returns is first thing in the morning, when the sales staff is fresh. It really helps to be

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  • The Top 3 Ways to Keep Your Resolutions

    It's that time of year again-when you vow to shape up, lose weight, and start saving...just like you have...dozens of times before. The difference this year? These winning strategies, which studies show will enable you to make real changes in your life. Bonus stat: Scientists say it only takes 21 days for the brain to form a new habit. And just knowing that can help you conquer anything.

    Resolution 1: I will go to the gym
    The trick is to plan your workout schedule as seriously as you do cocktails with friends: Studies show that you're more likely to stick to a fitness plan if you set a schedule in advance. Ears peak when we mentioned cocktails? Well then you, missy, are best served by a morning workout routine, so you'll have no excuse to cancel on the gym when after-work drinks beckon. And, during your workout, listen to music that's 120 to 140 beats per minute-think "Push It" by Salt-N-Pepa. Fast, but not too fast, paced music is proven to keep you moving.

    3 Recessionista

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  • How To Winterproof Your Hair

    Winter hair can often be described in three words: limp, lifeless, and static-y. But there are solutions! Adir Abergel, senior stylist at the Frédéric Fekkai Melrose Place salon, explains.

    Smooth out. If your hair looks dull and dry, the best way to restore softness to it is by shampooing with a moisturizing formula twice a week; follow that with a rich conditioner.

    Get a lift. Limpness is typically caused by overactive oil glands, which can weigh the hair down at the roots. For those who have it, it's a year-round problem, but it may be more obvious in the winter, when humidity is no longer plumping up the rest of the hair. So to fix it, first, apply conditioner only from the ears to the ends. Second, use a little dry shampoo, even on clean hair. It'll make your hair look like you got a great blowout. You could also have your stylist cut layers into your hair to create more fullness.

    The Top 5 Hair Tips for Gorgeous Hair

    Guard against static. Virtually every type of

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  • How to Fake Perfect New Year's Eve Skin

    We know from experience that after a New Year's Eve party, the worst picture of you will be posted and tagged by some Facebook frememy. And since having one pic of us with an angry zit -accentuated by our bright red mini dress, btw-just floating around the internet is enough, here's how we're going to make sure it doesn't happen again this year. Follow these concealer tips from Linda Wells' book, Allure: Confessions of a Beauty Editor, and it won't happen to you either.

    For Blemishes: Soak a Q-tip in Visine (or any anti-redness eye drops), then put it in the freezer for 30 minutes. When you take it out, hold it against the blemish for a minute to reduce redness and swelling. Let your skin air dry. Using a flat makeup brush with a head smaller than the blemish itself, dab a light layer of a cakey concealer on top and work the brush in a circular motion, blending slightly at the edges. Let it dry, then put on one more thin layer. Pat loose powder over the concealer, so it won't budge.

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  • 3 Tips for Healthy, Fresh Breath

    I'm no longer the only beauty-product tester in my house-my husband, by virtue of living for years with a beauty editor, has become a discerning tester. Most guys, when asked what they think about a face scrub or shampoo, might grunt "fine" or "too girly." Not Grady, who works at GQ (he's also worked for Men's Vogue and Details, which may explain his discriminating tastes). He differentiates between the harshness and softness of exfoliating beads, comments on whether a scent is too flowery or not quite woodsy enough, complains about a good product's bad bottle design-and thinks up new uses for things (example: one foaming cleanser, he's found, also makes a great shaving cream). So starting today, he'll be doing a series of product reviews-from the male perspective, of course-on

    Celebrity Dentist's Tips for Getting a Gorgeous Smile.

    Today he wrote about his love for the Supersmile Tongue Cleaner. No denying its big-time breath-freshing powers, but for anyone with a sensitive

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  • Tips for Hiding Thinning Hair

    The news that Prince William is starting to lose his hair made headlines in England. If that's considered shocking, what about when women experience thinning? It can be even more difficult psychologically.

    If you notice thinner ponytails and more hair in your drain, the best way to gauge if you need to seek medical attention is to perform a brush test before three consecutive shampoo sessions. It goes like this: comb your hair forward over a pillow or towel from the crown to the front of the head for 60 seconds using a timer and a clean brush. If you collect more than 50 hairs, see a doctor to help you determine the cause and the treatment.

    Top 10 Holiday Hair Mistakes

    In the meantime, there are ways to camouflage the thinning. Garren of the Garren New York salon shared some tricks with Allure:

    -Keep your hair shoulder-length or shorter, and with a blunt cut.

    -Side-part your hair for more coverage over the crown.

    -Coloring your hair can actually make it appear

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  • What to Wear to the Party: Holiday Dress Codes De-Coded

    Catholic schoolgirls and maître d's no longer own the exclusive rights to dress codes. This season, getting an invitation to a holiday party means you'll probably have to follow a few fashion guidelines as well. Here, we break down the most popular codes:

    Yes, you could throw on a little black dress and call it a day (or a night), but you'll feel more comfortable if you go the extra mile, since many partygoers do. Rebekah McCabe, senior VP of public relations for Chanel, plans to wear "my Chanel blazer over my new Alexander Wang cropped satin pants, like a modern tuxedo." Any detail that's slightly special or unexpected, like over-the-knee boots paired with a sleek minidress, works too.

    Top 10 Holiday Hair Mistakes

    This basically means cocktail attire, dialed up a notch. "The point is to mix up the fabrics, prints, or silhouette in some way," says stylist Tina Chai. "Basically anything but a little black dress or jeans."

    8 Holiday Party Makeup

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  • Does Being Beautiful Make You Happier?

    Turns out there's a truth to thinking that the prettier a woman is, the happier she must be-at least for ladies like Carrie, Samatha, Miranda, and Charlotte. A new study in the journal Personal Relationships found that women who live in cities are more satisfied with their lives and personal relationships if they're beautiful, whereas women who live in the country have no correlation between their levels of happiness and attractiveness.

    Related: The fragrance most likely to attract a man.

    "City women who were the most attractive got a lot of bang for their appearance buck," the study's lead author, Victoria Plaut, a visiting assistant professor of psychology at the University of California, Berkeley, School of Law, and an assistant professor at the University of Georgia, told MSNBC. "And if you were even slightly below average, you were very clearly worse off."

    Tell us where you live, and what you think-do you think your life is better or worse because of your looks?

    7 Makeup

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