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  • Is Yoga a Cure-All or a Fraud?

    Eight yoga claims, examined.Eight yoga claims, examined.Yoga has been touted as a cure-all, promising a slimmer, leaner body, improved cardiovascular health and a hotter sex life. But are popular claims about yoga's endless benefits stretching the truth?

    MORE: A Guide to Yoga for Beginners

    In the new book "The Science of Yoga: The Risks and the Rewards," William J. Broad, a senior writer for the New York Times and himself a devoted yoga lover, looked at the available science to help establish precisely what yoga can and can't do. "There's a mystique that rolls out of India and all things Eastern, which can get mixed up and produce a powerful image that can be dangerous to the extent that it can be misleading," Broad explains. "The science can be a wonderful tonic and helps clarify what's real and what isn't, what's good and what's bad."

    Broad says the ancient form of exercise can do far more good for you than bad, but it's still important to separate fact from fiction. Here are eight common beliefs about yoga-and the

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  • The New Way to Hide Your Grays

    Ever gone demi-permanent?Ever gone demi-permanent?When you're looking to cover up grays, there are a few ways to do it.

    You can use a semi-permanent hair color if you want the color to last for just a few shampoos (great, for example, if you want quick coverage for a party). If you're looking to make a long-term commitment, you'll want to seek out permanent color. Rather than washing out, this type of dye needs to grow out of your hair-leaving dreaded gray roots in its wake.

    QUIZ: How Healthy is Your Hair?

    But somewhere in the middle lies the hair color sweet spot that many women crave. It's called demi-permanent hair color.

    "This type of product will stay in the hair for 28 shampoos," explains Teca Lewellyn, a Procter & Gamble Beauty Scientist. "So, depending on how frequently you wash your hair, it will take about a month to a month and half to gently fade away."

    Here's how it works: Demi-permanent hair color molecules get under the outer cuticle of the hair shaft but, unlike permanent dyes, they don't penetrate

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  • 10 Ways to Soften Skin Without Lotion

    Banish dry skin, from head to toe.Have you ever counted how many steps you go through in your typical morning routine? From shower to hair and makeup, it's no wonder few ladies can make it out of the bathroom in less than 30 minutes. So it's only natural we often have the inclination to skip a couple steps where possible. For many of us, that means the body cream drops by the wayside. It's an easy compromise until one day you look down at your legs only to notice that skin looking rather reptilian.

    MORE: Explore Your Best Body Skin Here

    Skin's outermost layer, the stratum corneum, is protected by a lipid barrier made up of ceramides, cholesterol and fatty acids which helps keep water in the skin from leaching out. "The natural lipid layer can be lost during cleansing, so it's important to use a product that adds them back into skin," says Ellen Shepard, of Unilever research and development. That's where moisturizers come in-they treat dry skin, helping improve skintone and texture. Humectants (such as sodium

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  • 5 Health Dangers in Your Home

    Pesticides are not just on your lawn, but in your home, too.Pesticides are not just on your lawn, but in your home, too.You don't give much thought to toxins when you sip a glass of water, grab a receipt at your local grocery store or enjoy a barbecue on your backyard deck. And yet, in each of these instances, you and your family may be exposed to dangerous chemicals that could threaten your health.

    Discover five common toxins that may be lurking in your bedroom, bathroom or backyard-and what you can do to protect yourself and loved ones.

    1. Toxins: Air pollutants, including benzene and diesel

    Why they're bad for you: "There is absolute proof that air pollution kills people-and it's ubiquitous," says Sandra Steingraber, Ph.D., an ecologist and author of "Raising Elijah: Protecting Our Children in an Age of Environmental Crisis." "Not only is air pollution linked to asthma and lung cancer, but it may also increase the risk for stroke, heart attack and diabetes." Plus, some new evidence shows that small transient exposure is associated with a greater risk than previously thought, she adds.

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  • Is Your Nail Polish Harmful? Go Natural

    Is your polish non-toxic?Is your polish non-toxic?When it comes to beauty products, few things are so obviously full of chemicals than nail polish and remover.

    "Who hasn't walked into a nail salon and been overcome by the stinky punch of undeniable chemicals?" says Jenna Hipp, a "green" celebrity nail stylist in Hollywood, California. "You think to yourself: 'This can't good.' And you're right."

    It's not just toxic fumes that should raise concern. It's the ingredients in your nail polish that are proven to be harmful. "Between the nail, cuticle and the surrounding skin, it's inevitable that what goes on your nails is absorbed through your blood stream," says Deborah Burnes, founder and CEO of Sumbody natural beauty line and author of "Look Great, Live Green."

    Here are eight terms to brush up on before your next nail appointment.

    MORE: Non-Toxic Nail Polishes - Our Favorite Brands

    "3-Free" = no formaldehyde, toluene or dibutyl phthalate
    is the F-word of manicures-it's not necessary to use and if it is in

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  • Would You Go Gray?

    When will you let your hair go naturally?When will you let your hair go naturally?Any woman who colors her hair knows that it often feels like a full-time job.

    Whether you're adding highlights in your 20s or channeling your inner redhead in your 30s, the every-six-week appointments needed for hair color maintenance are a serious responsibility, and cost a pretty penny to boot.

    MORE: The Best Hair Color for Your Skintone

    Things get even trickier as your hair starts to gray-which happens sooner for some than others. Silver strands can take hold anywhere from our 20s to our 60s-and your chance of going gray increases 10-20 percent every decade after 30 years, according to the Library of Congress.

    If you choose to continue coloring, you'll probably find that you have to hit the salon or the drugstore even more often to keep ahead of those grays.

    While color is always an option, we love seeing women who embrace their naturally graying hair. It's a movement that's gained traction over that past few years, as more high profile women are embracing

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  • Will You Age Well? 7 Signs to Tell You Now

    The clues to aging gracefully.The clues to aging gracefully.We've all witnessed the phenomenon: that radiant older woman whose cherub skin seems to (unfairly!) defy the hands of time, and the thirty-something who appears haggard and worn beyond her years. What gives, Mother Nature?

    While environmental and lifestyle factors no doubt play a major role in how you age, experts say that pure genetic luck is the foundation of the equation. A 2009 study of twins published in the Archives of Dermatology revealed that up to 60 percent of skin aging is due to genetics, says Dr. Heidi Waldorf, director of laser and cosmetic dermatology at New York's Mount Sinai Hospital.

    But be forewarned-this fact could work against you if the assumption that you have "good" genetic odds leads you to not care for your skin. "You can have the best genes in the world, but if you smoke or bake in the sun, you'll look 10 to 15 years older," says Los Angeles dermatologist, Dr. Ava Shamban. "Moral of the story: Don't count on your genes to save you from a poor

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  • Study: Horizontal Stripes Don't Make You "Fat" (Plus Style Tips!)

    Dare to go horizontal and bold.Dare to go horizontal and bold.Ever heard that horizontal stripes will add a few inches to your waistline?

    This common fashion maxim may not be sage advice.

    A new study by YouBeauty Attraction Expert Viren Swami, Ph.D., finds that horizontal stripes aren't so bad after all.

    In the study, a woman in cahoots with the researchers pretended to be a participant while wearing a dress with either horizontal stripes, vertical stripes or no stripes (her dress was white every time and the stripes were navy blue). Later, the real participants rated her body size.

    QUIZ: What's Your Body Shape?

    Turns out, they rated her a little bit heavier when she was wearing horizontal stripes-but the difference was barely noticeable.

    "People should probably not worry too much about wearing vertical or horizontal stripes," says Swami. "They don't make much of a difference to perceived height and weight."

    Our fashion expert agrees.

    "Rules are meant to be broken, especially fashion rules," says YouBeauty

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  • Vitamin D: Skincare's Next "It" Ingredient?

    Courtesy of Ocean Potion; Dr. Dennis Gross; BrownberryCourtesy of Ocean Potion; Dr. Dennis Gross; BrownberryVitamin D sure is a hot topic these days. About one third of the U.S. population has low levels, and it's been touted as a cure-all for everything from depression to heart disease and skin cancer. With all the talk going on, there's a lot of back-and-forth over the full range of D's superpowers.

    But most recently added to the list? Mega anti-ager.

    Here's the thing: We already know that skin is a crucial catalyst and gateway for vitamin D to get to where it needs to in the body. "Vitamin D is primarily synthesized in skin exposed to UV light, if not obtained by diet or supplements," explains Jean Y. Tang, M.D., Ph.D., assistant professor of dermatology at Stanford University School of Medicine.

    QUIZ: Are You Getting Enough Vitamin D?

    And since over time, the skin's ability to create vitamin D decreases (up to 75 percent from the age of 20 to 70) you'll eventually have to pop more vitamin D supplements to reach standard levels than when you were younger. (That's one

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  • 9 Worst Beauty Trends Over Time

    From 60s beehives to 80s big hair to the spray-tan abusing 00s, the worst beauty trends of the past 50 years. From 60s beehives to 80s big hair to the spray-tan abusing 00s, the worst beauty trends of the past 50 years. For all of the plucking and primping ladies (and plenty of men) indulge in, there is definitely a science to looking good. Want to score a mate? All you need to project are "full lips, clear skin, smooth skin, clear eyes, lustrous hair, good muscle tone and body fat distribution," says one distinguished evolutionary psychologist.

    Want to kick butt at work? A recent study shows a little makeup goes a long way in terms of conveying competency on the job. Still, evidence alone doesn't seem to prevent us from testing the parameters of gorgeousity via wacky new ways to style our hair and paint our faces, which seem to deliberately contradict the rules of natural selection. Behold, the worst beauty trends to have emerged over the last half century.

    PHOTOS: See Which Celebrity Faces Are (And Aren't) Symmetric

    The Beehive, as seen the 60s girl band, The Ronettes.The Beehive AKA "B-52"-1960

    Talk about a bomber. After an Illinois hairstylist created this style for "Modern Beauty Salon," the hives seriously started buzzing and the

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