Blog Posts by Self Magazine

  • Relaxation Drinks: What Are They and Should You Try One?

    by Amanda MacMillan

    OK, so I'm sure you guys know by now about all the potential health hazards of drinking too many caffeine-packed energy drinks -- how they rot your teeth, mess with your heart and have been implicated in plenty of emergency room visits (and even some deaths) in recent years. But, chill out: We don't need to talk about that right now. What we do need to talk about, is a new trend on the market that seems to be going in a totally opposite -- but possibly just as controversial -- direction: relaxation drinks.

    Now that people are looking for ways to unwind this summer, I'm seeing these bottled beverages everywhere -- in my corner bodega, in press releases filling up my inbox, even on the Dr. Oz show. They have dreamy sounding names like iChill, Unwind, Vacation in a Bottle and Marley's Mellow Mood, to name a few, and they contain ingredients like valerian, melatonin, L-theanine, chamomile, GABA as well as other vitamins and minerals that are supposed to help you feel

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  • Get Charlotte Ronson's Look: Chic Floral Headbands

    by Alexandra Samuel

    Charlotte RonsonCharlotte RonsonOMG, you guys. I am like dying over floral headbands. I saw them all over the place on the ferry to Governor's Ball (a music festival in NYC) a few weeks ago, and I keep spotting them on indie-chic celebs, like fashion designer Charlotte Ronson pictured here at an event last month. I may (or may not) have just ordered two since typing this.

    See more: Tone Up Your Trouble Spots

    But, these blooming bands aren't exactly a one-size-fits all trend. In fact, if you don't do it right, you look ridiculous. Thankfully, it's easy to rock it right. Here's how:

    Leave your hair down unless your in a bridal party or something. Simple rule, big payoff. Wearing a big, attention-grabbing, face-framing accessory like a floral headband can make it looking like you're trying really hard, which as we know, is not the idea. Leaving your hair down, a little wavy and a little unkept makes it looks like your not trying at all. The resulting combination equates to the perfect level of

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  • Help! Will I Fall Out of Shape If I Don't Work Out on Vacation?

    by Jessica Cassity

    Arthur BelebeauArthur BelebeauNope. If you're fit -- and since you're worried about slacking, we bet you are -- you won't suddenly decondition (the scientific term for turning to mush). But there are some notable effects. After a week without exercise, your body becomes less efficient at removing glucose from your bloodstream. This could slow your metabolism by 4 percent, according to research from Paul Arciero, professor of health and exercise sciences at Skidmore College. Sounds minor, but it means you'll burn 80 fewer calories per day, which could lead to a 2-pound weight gain in just two weeks. And there's the mental toll. After 72 hours off, regular exercisers felt more dissatisfied with their bodies, researchers found. But relax, this is not a permanent downshift. You can enjoy those sunny moments and quickly get back on track.

    See more: Tone Up Your Trouble Spots

    Had your fun? Here's how to undo the damage.

    Sprint: Get your body back into fat-burning mode with this high-intensity

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  • 60-Second Makeovers

    by Alex Samuel

    Itching for a new look, and right now? Not a problem! Give these one-minute makeovers for face, hair and body a try.

    More from SELF:

    20 Superfoods For Weight Loss

    Secrets To Firing Up Your Metabolism

    Tone Up Your Trouble Spots

    Delicious Mediterranean Dishes Under 400 Calories

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  • Nearly 1 in 5 Designated Drivers Are Impaired, Says New Study

    by Amanda MacMillan

    photo by Gourmet/Romulo Yanesphoto by Gourmet/Romulo YanesBad news, party people: That "sober" friend you're hitching a ride home from at the end of the night may not be so sober, according to a new study from the University of Florida released today. When researchers there breathalyzed more than 1,000 people leaving bars after 10 p.m. on Friday nights, they found that 35 percent of designated drivers had been drinking -- and 18 percent had blood alcohol levels of .05 percent or higher.

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    That's still technically legal in the United States, where the lower limit for driving under the influence is set at .08 percent. But the researchers say that blowing a .05 can still mean that a person is impaired; in fact, the National Transportation Safety Board recommended in May that the federal government lower the legal limit to this exact level.

    Designated drivers often think that just because they don't feel buzzed, they're okay to drive, the researchers wrote in the Journal of Studies on

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  • Why Soccer Players (Even Amateurs!) Could Be at Risk for Brain Injury

    by Amanda MacMillan

    photo by Virgil Bastosphoto by Virgil Bastos A lot of us ladies grew up playing soccer in grade school, high school and even college -- and many of us have probably played in adult leagues out in the real world, as well. (And then there are SELF staffers; my editor, Rachel, was a not-so-talented high school forward; our social media editor, Stephanie, played Division I soccer for Northwestern U.) That's why this new study is definitely worth nothing: Soccer players who "head" the ball frequently performed worse on memory tests, found researchers from Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York City, and brain scans showed abnormalities similar to patients with concussions.

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    First, what you should know: This study is NOT talking about people in casual leagues who play just every once and a while. Researchers gave brains scans and cognitive tests to 37 amateur soccer players in NYC adult leagues, 8 of them female, who had been playing for an average of 22 years.

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  • Pick the Best Blush for Your Skin Type with the Help of Bobbi Brown

    by April Franzino

    It can be tricky, so Bobbi Brown, founder of Bobbi Brown Cosmetics, helps out. Use these to match your best shade.

    More from SELF:

    Tone Up Your Trouble Spots 6 Moves To Resize Your Butt and Thighs 20 Superfoods For Weight Loss Secrets To Firing Up Your Metabolism

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  • Insider Self-Tanning Tricks

    by Alexandra Samuel

    photo by Thayer Allyson Gowdyphoto by Thayer Allyson Gowdy I am super, super pale -- like so pale that you can see my veins under my skin. So I had to self-tan. It was time. Thankfully, I edited this story when I was back working at the mag -- 8 Steps To A Perfect Faux Tan -- and followed the story step-by-step...kind of, at least.

    You see, while this process is a really good way to get an amazingly gorgeous, long-lasting, even tan, right now I'm feeling a little bit lazy. So I found a few shortcuts and tweaks along the way.

    Face: Instead of the exfoliate-hydrate-apply tanner routine, I've been using Dr. Dennis Gross Alpha Beta Glow Pads, which have antioxidants, exfoliants and self-tanner in each swipe. I mean...I kinda feel like these pads make my whole story moot!

    See more: Tone Up Your Trouble Spots

    Arms and Legs: There's no real substitute for dry brushing your limbs, guys -- exfoliation is key to a smooth, even application -- but I am a huge fan of St. Tropez Self Tan Bronzing Spray, an superfine spritz with

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  • Why Am I STILL Sore?

    You kickboxed Monday but you're sore on Wednesday. What gives?? We explain.
    by Andrea Bartz

    photo by Arthur Belebeauphoto by Arthur Belebeau Bizarre, right? You take a new class or road test a SELF Dying to Try It move, and your muscles are screaming ... two days later. There's a scientific term for the why-now effect: delayed-onset muscle soreness, or DOMS. It can happen anytime you tax muscles in a foreign way. You cause microscopic damage to the tissue (not a bad thing--it's how you build stronger lean muscle), and waves of white blood cells rush in to patch things up. While they're at it, they release chemicals that set off pain receptors, says Robert Hyldahl, Ph.D., an exercise physiologist at Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah. The process peaks in about 36 hours (hence the delay), which is about when you want to reach for the Advil. Resist. The latest research says blunting the hurt may also blunt your body's ability to rebuild muscle, meaning you get stronger more slowly. But if hobbling isn't an option, our experts

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  • How to Fix Nail Stains Left by Bright Nail Polish

    by Alexandra Samuel

    photo by WWD/Robert Mitraphoto by WWD/Robert Mitra Sandals are finally coming out, which means bright polishes are back in vogue. You know what else that means? Stained toes are about to make a major come back...and not in a good way. But no matter how careful you are, nails can get stained.

    See more: Tone Up Your Trouble Spots

    So, when my friend asked "How do I erase bright-polish stains without scary chemicals?" I was glad I had the answer!

    The good news: You probably have all three ingredients in your kitchen right now. The even better news: This works for that weird self-tan build up between fingers and toes too. In a tiny bowl, mix two parts bakings soda, one part coconut oil (or olive oil if you're coconut oil-less) and a few squeezes of lemon juice. Then, add a little bit more of each ingredient until you've got a pastey consistency. (FYI: the baking soda lemon combo freaks out and fizzes and what not. It's no big deal.)

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    Then, use an old toothbrush or nail brush to

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