Blog Posts by Allure Daily Beauty Reporter

  • 5 Days Until Game of Thrones! Let’s Talk Hair!

    by Lexi Novak


    Next Sunday, the fourth season of TV's best blood-splattered, heaving-breasted, gloriously costumed fantasy drama is back. What will be the fate of the surviving Starks? Who will give Joffrey the good beat-down he deserves? So many unanswered questions! Although real answers would require reading the Game of Thrones books or watching spoilers, we're able to offer a few predictions based entirely on characters' hairstyle evolutions.

    Daenerys Targaryen: Currently the baddest dragon mother in town, she started out as an innocent girl, which was reflected in her soft, frizzy hair. When she was forced to wander the Red Waste in Season 2, her messy ponytail looked like it had lost a fight to a Weedwacker--an emblem of her loss of power, hope, and access to regular baths. By the end of Season 3, she had polished waves and intricate plaits: She was back in control of her tresses. Will control of Westeros be next?

    See more:
    34 Hair Ideas for 2014

    Margaery Tyrell:

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  • The Smoothest Blowouts Start in the Shower (Really)

    by Elizabeth Siegel

    Robert MitraRobert Mitra

    You probably already know that whole "lather, rinse, repeat" thing can damage your hair. But here's something you may not know: Getting smooth hair can be a whole lot easier if you start styling it in the shower--and avoid sneaky mistakes that cause breakage and flyaways in the long run.

    The chances are good that you're using too much shampoo. All you really need is a quarter-size amount. "Shampoo removes all of the dirt and oil from your hair, then it starts stripping away essential oils and lipids that prevent dryness and breakage," says hairstylist Nathaniel Hawkins. Shampoos labeled moisturizing, curl-enhancing, or color-protecting are relatively kind.

    See more: 34 Hair Ideas for 2014

    Don't act like you're in a shampoo commercial. Piling all of your hair on top of your head and massaging in your shampoo actually roughs up the cuticle, causing frizz, flyaways, and tangles. Rub your shampoo between your hands, gently massage the roots with your

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  • Allure Cover Girl Lauren Conrad's Tips for Planning a Wedding (Without Losing Your Mind)

    by Danielle Pergament


    You know how there are people who think February 14 is a cynical holiday that says more about the exploitation and commercialization of human emotions than it does about true love? Conrad's not one of them. "I'm a girlie girl," says the woman who actually met her fiancé, law student William Tell, on Valentine's Day two years ago. (They were set up by a mutual friend.) "We've set a date, but we're actually not telling anybody. We'll send out the save-the-dates, but until then..." the 28-year-old says with the wisdom of someone who has been a paparazzi target for a decade. "It'll be about 200 people, but I'm still figuring things out." We asked her how she's planning a wedding while her fiancé studies.

    See more: Find the Best Haircut for Your Face Shape

    Gauge his interest. "I ask him if he cares before I start asking questions. So I'll say, 'I'm looking at food or flowers or whatever,' and before I even get into it, I say, 'I want to know if you care about

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  • Saying Good-bye to Blow, the (Original) New York Blow Dry Bar

    by Catherine Q. O'Neill


    Therapy is expensive in New York, but blowouts--blowouts are cheap. For $50, you get an extra-long head massage, a 45-minute vent session, and a style that leaves you feeling (and looking) better than you did when you walked in the door. My therapists work at Blow, the New York Blow Dry Bar. After nine years, they're closing their doors on Saturday, and I'm faced with the bitter, bad-hair-day reality of saying good-bye.

    See more: Find the Best Haircut for Your Face Shape

    Before there was a Drybar in every hood, there was Blow on 14th Street. I've been going to them since 2011, when I first moved to New York City. They styled my hair for my interview with Allure (I got the job); for my first date (I got the boyfriend); for a big meeting with my boss (I got the promotion); and for nearly every major event since. My regular stylist and now friend, Gregory Patterson, even came to my birthday party this year. Is the salon a good-luck charm? Maybe. But I think

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  • Sofia Vergara Shares Her Beauty Revelation

    by Catherine Q. O'Neill

    Getty ImagesGetty Images

    Sofia Vergara knows what works for her--the woman has an eye for hair and makeup. The Modern Family actress and CoverGirl spokeswoman got on the phone with us to talk about her beauty evolution and ended up sharing a big beauty revelation.

    See more: Find the Best Haircut for Your Face Shape

    Take a closer look at Vergara's pictures over the years, and you'll notice something: With a few exceptions, she always wears the same makeup (brown eyeliner, bronzer, and mauve lips). "It hasn't really changed. Once you find what works for you, you stick to it," she says. Hair, though, is another story. She went dark (then really dark for a movie audition with Adam Sandler), cut bangs, and experimented with updos. But at the end of the day, she didn't feel like herself. And herself, it turns out, is medium brunette, with long, flowing hair. "When I was starting to work in Los Angeles, my natural blonde hair was very confusing for the casting directors because

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  • Sun News: New Sunscreens Maybe, Possibly Will Get FDA Approval

    by Elizabeth Siegel

    Getty ImagesGetty Images

    Here's some light reading for the beach: The Washington Post recently reported that eight sunscreen ingredients have been on the FDA's docket awaiting approval for years, and the agency hasn't approved a new ingredient since 1999. Talk about red tape, right?

    See more: Find the Best Haircut for Your Face Shape

    OK, so what does that mean? For one thing, it most definitely does not mean that there's anything wrong with the sunscreen you're using (you should definitely keep using it). But many sunscreen ingredients protect against UV rays in slightly different ways, and so the more ingredients you can mix together, the more effective you can make any sunscreen, says Steven Q. Wang, director of dermatologic surgery and dermatology at Memorial Sloan-Kettering in New York City.

    See more: The 10 Best Drugstore Anti-aging Products

    Plus, the SPF factor on any bottle of sunscreen only measures the degree of protection against UVB rays (the kind that burn skin).

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  • 11 Things Only a Beauty Junkie Would Understand

    by Sophia Panych

    Regan Cameron Regan Cameron

    Your bathroom looks like Sephora--or does Sephora just look like your bathroom...

    1. Always being the last one to get ready because you have to do all your friends' hair and makeup first.
    You've gotten really good at pregaming and putting on eyeliner at the same time.

    2. Only touching one shade in that limited-edition eye-shadow palette you had to have last year.
    But the packaging was so chic!

    3. Bringing every makeup item you own with you on vacation.
    You live by the Boy Scout motto: Always be prepared (for smoky eyes).

    See more: Find the Best Haircut for Your Face Shape

    4. Having more beauty products in your fridge than food.
    Who has space for food when there are so many creams and perfumes in the world!

    5. That the last time you stuck with a cream/lotion/serum long enough to finish it was when you accidentally emptied your mom's--as a two-year-old.
    Has this gone bad yet? It's OK, I'll just stick it in the fridge.

    6. The sadness

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  • Spring Style Tips from Rachel Zoe

    by Hannah Morill


    When Rachel Zoe wrote her first book, she was a celebrity stylist with a deep love of maxidresses. Fast-forward seven years and she's got two kids, a fashion line--and a deep love of maxidresses. We asked her about the fashion lessons in her second book, Living in Style.

    What's your idea of a stylish work outfit? "Every woman needs a tailored tuxedo jacket with sharp shoulders and slim lapels. I make one every season. If your workplace is corporate, pair it with the matching trousers. If it's more low-key, wear it over a T-shirt with jeans, jewelry, and heels."

    See more: The 10 Best Drugstore Anti-aging Products

    How about a great weekend look? "Here's the thing: Comfort is key, but that's no excuse for looking sloppy. I beg my clients to take five extra minutes to get dressed instead of just throwing on workout clothes. I like leggings with a chunky-knit sweater and riding boots, or wide-leg jeans with a T-shirt, a bomber jacket, and heels."

    Are there any

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  • Allure Cover Girl Lauren Conrad's Eyeliner Secrets

    by Danielle Pergament

    Alexi LubomirskiAlexi Lubomirski
    Lauren Conrad isn't one to take wild beauty risks. The celebrity/businesswoman/designer has the California beach-girl look down pat and knows what she likes: "Eyeshadow doesn't look good on me--it makes my eyes look tiny," she says. For our April cover, we pushed Conrad out of her comfort zone with big hair and, yes, lots of eyeshadow. (Pretty sure we proved her wrong.)

    Still, the eye-shadow belief led her to liquid eyeliner, which she wears on a near-daily basis. We asked for a tutorial in her signature winged look:

    1. Find a liquid liner you're comfortable with. "I use Mark," she says. "I order them in bulk and keep them in my refrigerator. I go through one a month."

    See more: 50 Beauty Products to Try Before You Die

    2. Lean on a counter. "Rest your hand to be steady," says Conrad, demonstrating by leaning on our table and holding an invisible liquid eyeliner an inch from her lashes.

    3. Start at the outside of your iris. Or, as Conrad says, "about

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  • Divergent's Top 5 Beauty Moments

    by Catherine Q. O'Neill


    Divergent isn't known for its wild beauty looks (à la The Hunger Games). But that doesn't mean the futuristic sci-fi thriller doesn't have some gorgeous--if sometimes puzzling--ones. These are my favorites from the film, which hits theaters tonight at midnight.

    1. That Perfect Bun
    Though Shailene Woodley's character Beatrice (Tris) spends most of the film in some form of a messy ponytail, she's first introduced wearing one of the most perfect buns I've ever seen--styled by her mother (above). A little height on the top, big full volume in the twist, and not a single flyaway. Maybe her mom secretly moonlighted as a hairstylist.

    2. Idiot-Proof Tattoos
    The futuristic application process in this film is, in a word, awesome. The tattoo artist simply places a template (below) over the skin, covers it with a glowing blue device, then removes it to reveal perfect ink. It completely eliminates the possibility of tattoo-artist error--which is probably a good

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