Blog Posts by Self Magazine

  • Workout Hack: A Pillow that Makes Your Butt Smaller

    by Marissa Stephenson

    Alexandra FergusonAlexandra Ferguson
    You know how sometimes the only thing keeping you from the gym is a liiitle voice telling you to go? We found it, and it's screaming at you in all caps from a fluffy-soft throw cushion.


    See more: Drop Two Pounds in One Week!

    We loved Alexandra Ferguson's original mojo-saying fitness pillows, and the new line available on her site now (with prices starting at $69) just makes us want to stack piles on our beds for instant fitspo. When we're doubting whether we can muster the strength for a 8-mile run? MAKE YOURSELF PROUD. When we swear that watching Scandal while holding plank is just as effective as going to bootcamp, there's NO EXCUSES. And when we wonder if our quads look big in those jeans, we clutch STRONG IS THE NEW SKINNY. (Our fave, duh.)

    See more:
    Look Better Naked


    No IKEA couch should be without one.

    More from SELF:
    The 24-Minute At-Home Boot Camp
    20 Superfoods For Weight Loss
    6 Moves To Resize Your Butt and Thighs
    5 Simple Steps to

    Read More »from Workout Hack: A Pillow that Makes Your Butt Smaller
  • Get in Fighting Shape: The 'Divergent' Cast's Workout Secrets

    Divergent's fight coordinator, J.J. Perry, was given a mission: whip six Hollywood actors into kickass shape, so they don't huff-and-puff while sprinting, punching, and throwing knives onscreen. His deadline? Five weeks. Here's how he did it--and how you can steal his fitness tricks.
    by Jacqueline Risser

    Theo James as Four (center), with Shailene Woodley (left), in 'Divergent' (Summit)

    "We needed three months to train [the actors], but we only had five weeks," said J.J. Perry, the man charged with sculpting the bods of the film's cast. Operating on a tight schedule, Perry went to work-- training the actors three hours daily for five weeks straight. The good news: You can use Perry's unique tactics to hone a fight scene-worthy physique. Just follow his four simple steps and you'll pass your own initiation test into Dauntless.


    Step 1: Be Realistic About Your Abilities
    Perry, who typically trains bad boy action heroes like Sly Stallone, Jet Li, and Jason Statham (but rarely works with pretty-as-pie actresses), said, "I evaluated everybody right off the bat. I needed

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  • 5-Minute Full-Body Workout

    With this the no-excuses routine, you'll squeeze in a killer head-to-toe, fat-blasting workout no matter how busy you are.
    by Jaclyn Emerick

    Photo: Dasha Libin Anderson

    A quality sweat session in five minutes? Yep. The proof is in this quickie firm-and-burn routine created by Dasha Libin. Russian-born Libin (her grandfather taught kettlebells to the Soviet Army!) is the co-owner of Anderson Martial Arts in New York City and the creator of Kettlebell Kickboxing. She has more than a decade of training in Muay Thai, Jeet Kune Do, Filipino Martial Arts, and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and a Master's degree in sports science. So, yeah, pretty much, she knows her sh*t.

    The Plan
    Libin calls this routine Martial 2s, or 20-2. The secret sauce: efficiency. You'll alternate between two exercises (detailed below), consecutively. No rest between sets and reps!

    For your first set, you'll complete each exercise for 20 reps. For your second set, you'll complete each exercise for 18 reps. You'll continue by reducing by 2 reps every set

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  • Miranda Kerr's Perky-Booty Secret

    by Kafi Drexel

    Courtesy of ReebokCourtesy of ReebokYou could say Miranda Kerr has been working her butt off. She's the new face of Wonderbra, the first global brand ambassador for CLEAR Hair & Scalp shampoos, has her own skin care line, is designing a collection of tea cups for Royal Albert, oh, and she's also covering the Elvis classic "You're The Boss," available on iTunes! ("I'm not planning on launching a music career, but I really enjoy singing and dancing," says Kerr). So, naturally, she needs a way to keep that angel-perfect backside tight.

    See more: 20 Superfoods For Weight Loss

    To find out how she does it, we caught up with Kerr for the launch of another venture as spokesperson for the Reebok Skyscape, an outside-the-gym sneak. (You know, that cute, comfy shoe touted in the new commercial where Kerr comes home post-workout, strips out of her gym clothes and drops them into the washing machine with a pretty enviable rear view?)

    Here's how that tush stays perky: Ballet Beautiful sessions with

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  • Cate Blanchett Got a Tattoo. Did You, Too? Here's How to Care for It

    by Alexandra Samuel

    WireImageWireImageThe day after the Oscars, the gorgeous Cate Blanchett was spotted coming out of Hollywood tattoo spot Shamrock Social Club with black covering her wrist. Some are saying it's an "Oscar" tattoo -- a tribute to her win -- while others say it's tribute to her late pal, Philip Seymour Hoffman. Me? I figure we'll see soon enough.

    No matter what her (or your) tattoo of choice is, there are a few rules to remember to keep any fresh ink looking, well, fresh.

    See more: How to Look Better Naked

    While you should listen to your tattoo artist about how to care for your new tattoo while it heals, you need to take care of it every single day to keep it looking bright for your whole life. Think about old dudes with seriously fadded tats that look more like blobs than actual art. Obvs, someone hasn't been wearing enough SPF.

    According to the American Academy of Dermatology, UV rays can cause ink to fade over time, so it's super important to rock a waterproof sunscreen

    Read More »from Cate Blanchett Got a Tattoo. Did You, Too? Here's How to Care for It
  • Sports May Teach You More About Business Than You'd Think They Would

    by Devin Tomb

    Kate PowersKate Powers

    Yesterday, I was lucky enough to log into a webinar hosted by Ernst & Young Women Athletes Business Network, in which the panel included tennis legend Martina Navratilova and Olympic gold medalist and TV host Summer Sanders. (Not too shabby, yeah?) The women came together to discuss the notion that female athletes (past or present) have a huge tool kit to help them achieve big things in other industries -- and that playing sports in general can set you up to be super successful in any career. I broke down the five biggest lessons I learned so that you, too, can step up your game.


    "A great champion works through setbacks with a comeback."-- Donna de Varona, Olympic Champion and Lead Advisor, EW Women Athletes Business Network

    When Varona dropped this line, fellow panelist Summer Sanders noted how she used the word "setback" instead of "failure." For athletes, setbacks are just learning experiences, they agreed. "It's not winning that teaches you resilience," Sanders

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  • Flywheel Sports Steps Up Its Game with TWO New Launches

    by Rachel Jacoby Zoldan

    Courtesy PhotoCourtesy PhotoYou guys probably know we're big fans of Flywheel, the 26-studios-and-counting Spin and barre hotspot. But with the proliferation of boutique gyms like Barry's Bootcamp and SoulCycle launching private label collections, fancy-schmancy new sites and more, Flywheel had some serious catching up to do.

    See more: How to Look Better Naked

    And now they have, by introducing not one, but two amazing launches. First up? A seven-piece apparel collection, available for purchase exclusively on bloomingdales.com and few select Bloomingdale's stores. It's the first time Fly merch has been available outside the studio--and also happens to be the cutest capsule collection ever. We heart their capris -- they're moisture-wicking wonders.

    See more: 6 Moves To Resize Your Butt and Thighs

    But wait, there's more! Today, Flywheel also unveiled its iPhone app -- which means if you have an Android, you've gotta wait a bit. (Sorry!) The app has everything you love about the

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  • The Crazy Thing that Affects Your Decision-Making

    by Anna Maltby

    Stephanie RausserStephanie Rausser Ever heard the adage "Everything looks different in the harsh light of day"? (Come to think of it, is that an adage? It might just be a quote from Revenge. We digress.) Turns out, that really might be true.


    According to a recent study in the Journal of Consumer Psychology, bright light basically intensifies everything -- so if you like something, you'll love it when the lights are bright. And if you aren't into something, you'll really hate it in harsh lighting.

    See more: How to Look Better Naked

    "Higher levels of brightness intensify both positive and negative affective reactions but not reactions to neutral items," study author Alison Jing Xu, assistant professor of management at University of Toronto Scarborough, told SELF.

    Sounds totally random, but this is research you may actually be able to take advantage of: Is your boss kind of a hothead? See if you can dim the conference room lights in your annual review, Xu suggests. "Turning down the lights may

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  • Sonia Kashuk Launched Her (Amazing!) Spring 2014 Collection at Target

    by Alexandra Samuel


    Courtesy of Sonia Kashuk for TargetCourtesy of Sonia Kashuk for Target

    This past Sunday, Sonia Kashuk released her totally amazing spring beauty collection and it's packed with must-have makeup for the warmer weather that I am totally going to start using now. And yes, while the makeup is awesome both in terms of texture and color, what I'm really loving is everything Sonia launched that helps with makeup -- the tools you need to apply, store and carry. (Besides, how many other makeup artists also create rad brushes and bags like these?)

    See more: How to Look Better Naked

    This season's super soft Brush Couture Five-Piece Brush Sets comes equipped with powder/blush brush, a foundation brush, two eye shadow brushes and a super skinny liner brush. Plus, all the handles have a super funky snake-inspired print with luxe-looking gold end caps that make it seem like this set is way more than $17.

    Another must have: the Limited Edition Completely Compact Brush, an awesome, fluffy face brush and mirror that folds into a palm-sized

    Read More »from Sonia Kashuk Launched Her (Amazing!) Spring 2014 Collection at Target
  • Get a Great Butt for that Perfect Pair of Denim

    by SELF Staffers

    Arthur ElgortArthur Elgort
    The Style: You may think back pockets are just your jeans' phone holder. But their real job is to make your butt Hudson hot. You want them the size of your palm and located at the center of each cheek. Also choose stretch. Pick jeans with 3 percent Lycra for a lift. A try-on must: Sit down to ensure your rise isn't too low--crack is still whack.


    See more: How to Look Better Naked

    The Product: If your jeans are skintight, make sure your skin is tight, too. BioElixia BodyShaper Cellulite Contour Creme ($59) smooths lumps and bumps. Rub it on your tush and thighs daily post-shower and before bed.

    The Move: For a perky butt, isolate glutes with a kick-back. Kneel with forearms on floor, a band around right foot; hold handles. Extend right leg back and up (as shown below). Return to start for 1 rep. Do 12 reps. Switch sides; repeat. Do 3 sets on odd days.

    Warwick SaintWarwick Saint

    More from SELF:
    Drop Two Pounds in One Week!
    The 24-Minute At-Home Boot Camp
    20 Superfoods For Weight

    Read More »from Get a Great Butt for that Perfect Pair of Denim

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