Guest Post: Good Food For Good Skin

I’m so excited to feature a second guest post here on Unapologetic Beauty! Here are some very special (and very useful!) tips from David Novak on the positive and negative effects of what you decide to consume.

What effects do different foods have on your skin? Plenty! Food is the proverbial fountain, or anti-fountain of youth, depending on what you choose to put in your mouth.

First, the bad and the ugly. At the top of the list of foods that can destroy your skin— Sugar! Research shows that sugar causes inflammation and this makes us look older. But sugar isn’t the only food that causes inflammation. Most carbohydrates do as well. Those carbs we can do without include starchy fruits and vegetables, such as potatoes, apples and bananas, which convert to sugar quickly. Although these foods do contain nutrients, their sugar content is through the roof, and without a lot of exercise or when eaten in excess, these foods can inflame organs, muscular tissue and our skin. Refined grains also produce the same result.

People with a gluten sensitivity or intolerance can experience a lot of inflammation when consuming gluten-enriched foods. Stay away from barley, wheat and rye for this reason. Sometimes these grains are given different names in different countries, such as Spelt, for example. Even if you do not have a gluten sensitivity, these foods can and still do cause some degree of inflammation. Rice, white or whole grain, is a starch and can cause some degree of inflammation. Foods made from these grains, also known as ‘processed foods’, are equally as bad for your skin.

Many people can improve their skin tone and texture dramatically simply by avoiding processed foods, and eating wholesome foods that are healthy for you. Your skin will respond by looking and feeling healthier. Below are some foods that are great for your skin:

Water: The number one thing that you can put into your body if you want great-looking skin is water. The more water you drink, the more you flush all of the other stuff out of your body and the healthier your skin is going to look.

Oranges, Grapefruit and Brussel Sprouts: These are very rich in Vitamin C, and Vitamin C helps delay or reduces wrinkles.

Broccoli, Spinach, Carrots and Low-Fat Dairy: All of these contain vitamin A, which improves the turnover of cells in the skin. As a result, your skin gets renewed more quickly and the freshest skin stays on top.

Lean Red Meat and Eggs: These provide iron, which helps keep you from becoming too pale or forming dark circles around your eyes. Eat lean red meat sparingly, though, and make sure the cut of meat you eat is not too high in fat. Eggs are a good iron-providing alternative for people who don’t want to eat much red meat, and you can eat eggs literally every day.

Fish, Flax Seeds and Walnuts: Omega3, found in tuna, salmon, sardines and shellfish, is the “good fat” that wards off inflammation, which is bad for the skin. If you don’t like fish to obtain those essential fatty acids that your body needs (and that improve your skin), an alternative option is to eat flax seeds and to cook with flax seed oil. Finally, walnuts have more Omega3 in them than either of the aforementioned.

Whole Wheat: contains selenium, a mineral superb for your skin, which improves it at a cellular level and keeps you looking young and beautiful.

Berries, Plums, Tomatoes, Sweet Potatoes and Cantaloupe: are rich in antioxidants, which increases your ability to absorb free radicals, which in turn reduces skin problems.

Adding these foods to your diet can go a long way towards improving skin health. However, it’s just as important to cut out those bad foods that can harm your skin.

David Novak is a international syndicated newspaper columnist, appearing in newspapers, magazines, radio and TV around the world. His byline has appeared in GQ, National Geographic, Newsweek, The Wall Street Journal, Reader’s Digest, USA Today, among others, and he has appeared on The Today Show, the CBS Morning Show and Paul Harvey Radio. David is a specialist at consumer technology, health and fitness, and he also owns a PR firm and a consulting company where he and his staff focus on these industries. He is a regular contributing editor for Healthline. For more information, visit http://www.healthline.com/.

Urban Decay: Showboat Nail Kit

urban decay showboat nail set

If you’ve ever tried an Urban Decay nail polish, you will undoubtedly understand the raving that’s about to go on here.

This is the second set of polishes that I’ve bought from Urban Decay. The thing is, though, that I only buy them when they are on sale. It’s not that the sets are overpriced to begin with, it’s just that I have a really hard time resisting a good sale. I think that I bought this particular set for something like $12.00 a few months ago. (Unfortunately, they are off the site now! Sorry!)

urban decay showboat nail set 2

This week felt like the perfect time to break out these beautiful mini bottles of pretty polish since it was the first (official) day of summer just a few days ago, and because, really, what says, “Hot weather, here I come!” quite like gorgeous neon tips?

ud showboat radium

Radium

ud showboat covet

Covet

ud showboat perversion

Perversion

ud showboat fishnet

Fishnet

ud showboat woodstock

Woodstock

ud showboat showboat

Showboat

Each of the colors are so pigmented and so fresh–no exceptions. On many of these, I could have even gotten away with one coat if I were really in a pinch (however, they all have two). Taking them off wasn’t any challenge either.

The one thing to note is that some of the polishes have a finish that is more pearly than glossy, like Woodstock.

I have to say that my favorite has to be Covet. I didn’t expect to like it, but on my nails it totally popped and I fell in love! I also love the subtle sparkles that it features.

What do you think? Are YOU ready for summer?

Hiatus Is Over!

After a long hiatus, I’m back!

The last few months have been a whirlwind of studies, but with the fresh, warm air of summer this blog is being refreshed. 

Get ready for some exciting posts on Stila lip products, Physicians Formula Bronzers, and Chanel eye shadows!

Until then, however…please enjoy this picture of the first flowers to sprout in my yard. Image

Get excited, I know that I am!

CoverGirl: LipPerfection Jumbo Gloss Balm

glossy balm 2

Okay, I’m going to admit something here:

If Eva Chen posts anything on her Instagram or Tumblr more than twice, I consider it worth my time and there is a good chance I will buy it.

This philosophy gets me into trouble A LOT since it’s relevant almost every day.

So, naturally following my own advice, when I noticed her blogging about the new CoverGirl LipPerfection jumbo glossy balms I gave in and bought two at Target.

glossy balm 1

Left to right: 220 Haute Pink Twist and 205 Ballet Twist

I wasn’t really sure what to expect because CoverGirl is one of those drugstore cosmetic companies that insists on putting fool-proof packaging on their products so that you can’t discreetly test them. (Yes…I am that girl who looks through all the lipsticks and foundations at the drug store until I find one that someone’s already illegally opened just so that I can test it…) The glossy balm packaging allows no way of seeing the real product color, so all you have to go on is the (usually misleading) cap color. LAME!

However, Eva Chen said they were great…so I took the chance. I chose a pretty pale pink, 205 Ballet Twist, and because we know I can’t resist a hot pink, 220 Haute Pink Twist.

Honestly, they were nothing like I expected. The packaging touts “sheer color, soft shine,” so you would expect something, well, sheer and shiny, right? Oddly enough, they were just the opposite.

glossy balm 4

glossy balm 3

220 Haute Pink Twist

I was extremely surprised at the color payoff. With two coats, they looked like a regular lipstick; not like the “glossy balm” I was expecting. And as for that glossiness…that’s a good question. I got none. They have a super satiny finish, almost matte.

glossy balm 6

glossy balm 5

205 Ballet Twist

I also found that if you put two or three coats of them on, they act exactly like the good old Revlon Just Bitten Lip Balm Stains (and the packaging is almost identical).

These are kind of like a cheap dupe for the Tarte balms, just without the peppermint feeling.

Overall, I really like them and I’ll probably buy more colors, but I’m really annoyed that I was mislead by the advertising.

Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics: Lip Tar in Anime

lip tar anime 1

Ah, the everlasting quest for the perfect long-wearing lipstick…..

I thought it would never end. I thought that I was going to be living my life running to a mirror every 6 hours to touch up my lipstick and stress about how there are no matte colors that leave my lips hydrated, not begging for Fresh Advanced Lip Therapy and a flaky, ugly mess.

That was…until I found out about my new hero, Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics.

lip tar anime 2

lip tar anime 3

Lip Tar. Weird name, right? But let’s be honest, they couldn’t just call this “liquid lipstick” or “long-wearing lip color.” Nope, this product could never be in the same category as all the other lipsticks out there. Why? Well, this one actually sticks and stays forever and ever on lips no matter what no questions asked! Seriously.

I picked this up in Anime because I love hot pink lips and also because I was in a rush and this color was on the top of the pile at the checkout line in Sephora. It’s not super expensive at $16.00 and it even comes with a little lip brush (which is actually REALLY nice. Super precise and easy to control.)

lip tar anime 4

On my lips, it feels like I have absolutely nothing on, and like I said before, it STAYS! Currently I’m drinking some Starbucks, and though I have a pretty good lip stick stain going on the lid, it doesn’t look like it’s come off from my lips themselves at all. Score!

lip tar anime 5

lip tar anime 6

Honestly, these things are like candy. I dare you to stop at one, those colors are just too hard to resist. I’m already planning which one I’ll get next…(it’s between Ophelia and Stalker…what do you think?)

lip tar anime 7

Do you ever get a sudden urge to strike a (GASP) duck face pose when wearing neon lipstick??? I don’t know why, but sometimes I do…so I might as well embrace it!

THE DETAILS:

Benefit: Peek-A-Bright Eyes

benefit bright eyes 1

When I saw that Benefit had released this, I was ridiculously excited. A few years ago I bought a similar palette from them, the Big Beautiful Eyes one, and completely used it up. I was definitely in the market for a replacement!

The great thing about Benefit is that they don’t just sell you a product and leave you on your own. No, no, no. They give you step-by-step instructions on how to use it as well as a bunch of helpful and relevant tips! Awesome. I love easy instructions!

benefit bright eyes 2

benefit bright eyes 3

(Left to right): pink highlight shadow, warn chocolate contour shadow, buff base shadow, Eye Bright

This palette is extremely similar to the good old Big Beautiful Eyes one. It comes with the same two mini brushes (which are nothing special, but they do the job) and three neutral shadows. The difference in this one is that you get a generous helping of their Eye Bright.

I hadn’t tried Eye Bright before so this was a good palette to introduce me to it, since it tells you exactly where to put it and how.

Benefit instructs us to put the buff base shadow on all over your eyelid, then use the warm chocolate contour shadow in your crease and as a liner. Then, finish up with a few concentrated pats of the pink highlight shadow in the middle of your eyelid and some Eye Bright in the inner and outer corners.

benefit bright eyes 8

benefit bright eyes 7

I followed all the instructions given here, and this is how it turned out. To be honest, I’m a little disappointed with the shadows. The deep chocolate was super difficult to work with as a liner (and the brush given didn’t help).

I do like the Eye Bright, however, especially the fact that Benefit give it its own lid so no stray shadow bits got into it. Handy!

benefit bright eyes 4

benefit bright eyes 5

Peek-a-boo….Bright Eyes! Sorry, couldn’t help acting out the title :).

In all, this is a good palette, but if you are going for the Eye Bright aspect I think just buying the product is a better idea.

benefit bright eyes 6

Skeptical on whether or not I’ll keep this palette…hmm.

THE DETAILS:

Stila: Seeing Stars Smudge Stick Waterproof Eye Liner Set

stila seeing stars 1stila seeing stars 2(Left to right): Tetra, Oscar Fish, Stargazer, Angelfish, Moray

I took my own advice and picked these up at Sephora the other day, and man, am I glad that I did.

When Stila says that something won’t budge, they really mean it. I’m NEVER ever ever disappointed in any of their waterproof products (like, ever.) Once you put these super pigmented liners of heaven on, they stay there until you want to take them off. It’s fabulous.

stila seeing stars 3(Top to bottom): Tetra, Oscar Fish, Stargazer, Angelfish, Moray

I like these because you can either wear them simply, as an everyday look, like this…

stila seeing stars 4stila seeing stars 5Wearing Oscar Fish as winged liner with Angelfish lightly blended into inner corners.

…or, you can build them up and do some smudging and make yourself glam for an event (or just for fun, who says you have to be going somewhere special to amp up your eyes?)

stila seeing stars 6stila seeing stars 7Wearing Stargazer layered with Moray as dramatic winged liner and Tetra on lower lash line, Angelfish lightly blended into inner corner.

Literally every one of these colors impress me. When I was swatching them and taking pictures, all that was going through my mind was: “OMG. Angelfish is kind of amazing! No, wait–hello, Stargazer! Are you kidding me? I need Tetra on my eyes right this very second.”

Only one complaint here, and it’s about the packaging. For some weird reason, it takes a lot of time to roll these up. It takes a good 10 turns until it really even starts to move…hm. At least they make up for it in the actual product quality.

And to top it all off…the price? CRAZY.

THE DETAILS: