Blog Posts by Marie Claire

  • 9 Foods that Reduce Stress Levels

    Don't stress!Reach for these items next time you're feeling under pressure, under the weather, or just too close to that breaking point. Munching on these stress-free foods will help pull you back into the game.

    A German study in Psychopharmacology found that vitamin C helps reduce stress and return blood pressure and cortisol to normal levels after a stressful situation. Vitamin C is also well-known for boosting your immune system.

    Sweet Potatoes
    Sweet potatoes can be particularly stress-reducing because they can satisfy the urge you get for carbohydrates and sweets when you are under a great deal of stress. They are packed full of beta-carotene and other vitamins, and the fiber helps your body to process the carbohydrates in a slow and steady manner.

    Dried Apricots

    Apricots are rich in magnesium, which is a stress-buster and a natural muscle relaxant as well.

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    Almonds, Pistachios & Walnuts

    Almonds are packed with B

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  • 5 Christmas Party Themes You Haven't Thought of Yet

    The ugly sweater party is an oldie, but definitely a goodie.The Ugly Sweater Party
    If you managed to go this long in life without acquiring some horrific Christmas sweater - you know, the ones with the puff paint snowmen and the mistletoe-patterned mock turtlenecks - from your great aunt Mildred, then you may have to run to the nearest K-Mart to purchase one for this party of holiday fashion faux pas. We promise they don't cost more than $15, and the photos will most definitely be priceless.

    Reverse Christmas in July Christmas in July is a time-honored mid-summer party favorite. In the summer's hottest month, people pretend it's Christmas - complete with a tree, gift exchange, and hearty meal. Well, turn the tables on this tradition with a beach-themed romp in the dead of winter. Beach balls, mojitos, everyone's favorite Christmas with the Beach Boys album, and ample sunscreen are a must. Bikinis - considering this happens to be one of the all-time worst months for six-packs - are clearly optional.

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    Trim My

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  • 4 DIY Hair Remedies for the Holidays

    A leave-in hair mask can transform your hair.Let's face it: Lustrous hair can take a lot of upkeep. Even if your stylist doesn't make house calls, fear not. "You can give your hair the TLC it needs to look its best by using items you have at home," notes Lorri Goddard Clark for the Privé Salon in Los Angeles, whose clients include Reese Witherspoon. Here, she dishes on her tried-and-true recipes for getting - and maintaining - healthy hair.

    1. Feed Your Head "You can't have full, bouncy hair without a healthy scalp," says Goddard-Clark. To reduce excess oil, dampen a cotton ball with witch hazel, dab it along your hairline and part, and rinse hair with cool water. Fight flakes weekly by adding five drops of tea-tree oil to your favorite shampoo as a booster. Skip conditioner, though, and apply a detangler only to the ends of your hair - your scalp may be sensitive after this treatment.

    MC Tip: Before any type of scalp treatment, check for burns from hot tools that could be easily irritated.

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  • 10 Worst Holiday Songs

    This isn't the most festive cat we've ever seen.1. Dominick the Donkey, Lou Monte
    If we wanted to hear that much braying, we'd sit next to our asthmatic uncle Fred.

    2. Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer, Elmo & Patsy
    Because Nana's drinking is no laughing matter.

    3. The Chipmunk Song (Christmas Don't Be Late), The Chipmunks & David Seville
    Regrettably, the Xanax is in our other purse.

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    4. Jingle Bells, The Singing Dogs
    Hmmm, barking dogs. See also: reasons to move.

    5. Feliz Navidad, Jose Feliciano
    The only Spanish we retained from high school.

    6. I saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus, Tommie Connor
    Fanning the fears of infidelity and broken marriages since 1952.

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    7. Mamacita, Donde Esta Santa Claus?, Augie Rios
    Sparking the Santa-ain't-real conversation in homes all across the country.

    8. Rudolf the Red-Nosed Reindeer
    Someone's gonna yell "like a light bulb!" and think they're being cute. But they won't be.

    9. Christmas in Hollis, Run-DMC

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  • Ted Gibson's 5 Tips for Quick, Holiday-Ready Hair

    Ted Gibson recommends dry shampoo for an extra lift.

    During the holiday season, it's likely you have more after-work functions to attend than you have time to get ready. Fear not. Celebrity hair stylist Ted Gibson - who has worked on Angelina Jolie, Anne Hathaway, and Renee Zellweger's locks, among others - offers up tips to transition from the office to a festive fete.

    1. Tame Fly-Aways

    If your hair has gone haywire since you last styled it, hair towelettes called Hair Sheets by Ted Gibson help calm fly-aways. They also deodorize and freshen your look. An easy fix that you can keep in your desk drawer, hair sheets come in packs of 10 for $25.

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    2. Create Volume

    A long day at work may have dampened the volume in your hair, but don't let it dampen your motivation to go out. Gibson recommends dry shampoo to give it a lift and get rid of excess oil.

    3. Let it Shine

    To get a sleek style, try the serum L'Oreal Shine Perfection. Running a dollop of this medium-weight product through your mane will

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  • 8 Style Tips for the Holidays

    Go for varied textures and fabrics this holiday season.

    The holiday season is right around the corner, which means one thing: a calendar full of festivities, and a chock full of seasonal sartorial conundrums to go with it. Getting a look together for a holiday party can be tricky, but we've come up with a handy list of eight tips that we're sure will help you out. Our number one suggestion? HAVE FUN! This festive season is all about standing out - and more than a little bit of sparkle - so forget about being shy until after New Year's.

    1. Start off with some statement outerwear. Chances are it'll be freezing outside when you head to your holiday soirées each evening, so a chic coat is a must have. It's the first thing people see, and you can use it to pull your entire look together. Make sure that you find one that's perfectly fitted - you can always take it to your friendly neighborhood tailor for some alterations - and if you want to step it up in the style department, try one with a fashion-forward silhouette or an interesting

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  • How to Beat Holiday Weight Gain

    Get through the party season without adding pounds!Get through the party season without adding pounds by focusing your workout on the most effective toning moves. Try this full-body routine by Alycia Kluegl, a trainer at New York Sports Clubs in Hoboken, NJ, three times a week.

    Crunches: Lie on your back, legs bent and feet flat on the floor. Place hands behind your head and focus on a point on the ceiling. Use your abdominal muscles to lift your upper body several inches, then lower back down to the floor. Repeat 15 times.

    Oblique crunches: Begin on the floor in the same starting position. Lift your shoulder blades up while twisting so that your right elbow touches your left knee. Return to starting position, then switch sides. Repeat 15 times on each side.

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    Cardio warm-up: five minutes

    Weighted squats: Stand with feet hip-distance apart, arms at sides, holding 10-pound weights. Squat as if sitting down in a chair. Stop when thighs are parallel to the floor, then

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  • Top 10 Winter Fragrances

    Bobbi Brown Bed is the perfect winter fragrance.Bed Head

    Bobbi Brown Bed is a subtle perfume oil blended with neroili, orange flower, and jasmine. Just the thing if you love warmly sensual, barely-there scents - and gorgeous, antique-style bottles. ($70,

    Mother of Dragons

    Quirky-good fragrance house Demeter's newest offering, Dragon Fruit, mixes citrus notes with subtle, woodsy florals for a fresh, fruity scent that works purely unseasonal. ($6-$39,

    Hot Coco

    With darkly luminous hints of grapefruit, bergamot, rose absolute, and Indonesian patchouli, Chanel Coco Noir is one of the most wearable florientals to hit shelves in years. ($90,

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    Hippie Chic

    Blended with lily of the valley, Moroccan rose, sugared patchouli, and sandalwood, Nicole by Nicole Richie encapsulates all that's intriguing about the designer's rich hippie, cool LA chick vibe. ($69,

    Love Story

    Diane von Furstenberg's new scent, Love

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  • 5 New Ways to Stay Slim This Holiday Season

    Try these new tactics out at the buffet table tonight! That seltzer-and-celery-stick party protocol never seems to work once the sliders and bubbly start getting passed around. Tricia Williams, NYC nutritionist and chef at Food Matters, suggests a game plan for staying slim throughout the decadent season.

    1. Cut 100 to 200 calories from breakfast and lunch. A few painless strategies: drip coffee instead of a latte; brown rice cake instead of a bagel; greens instead of chips; lemon juice and extra-virgin olive oil instead of dressing; lettuce instead of bread for your sandwich. (If the latter sounds extreme, consider the Korean staple dish bulgogi, where you wrap up spicy beef in lettuce. Yum!)

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    2. Add two teaspoons of chia seeds to iced tea or watered-down juice before you go. The seeds expand, so you feel satiated. Plus, they contain omega-3 fatty acids, which temper inflammation from excess food, alcohol, and stress.

    3. Survey the foodscape. What looks most delicious? Zero in on that, steer

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  • 3 Tips to Eating Heathy at Holiday Cocktail Parties

    Here's how to keep your weight in check over the holidays.

    PRE-PARTY: "I always have an afternoon snack [150 to 175 calories] so I don't show up to a party hungry."

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    DIP STATION: "I skip the starches. Tortilla chips add up quickly. But I eat as much crudités as I'd like. If there isn't any, I find enough cherry tomato garnish to improvise a salad. I might also help myself to four pieces of shrimp, no sauce. I limit myself to 2 tablespoons total of hummus, salsa, or guacamole."

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    PASS-AROUNDS: "I never eat the puffs or flatbreads - they're usually 100 calories or more, a slippery slope. Instead, I allow myself two protein servings - four shrimp count as one. If the tuna tartar isn't smothered in mayo, I'll take one and throw out the crisp. Kebabs are also good."

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