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8 Reasons to Go Make Up Free This Summer

When you think about it, summer time is ideal for those of us who want to take a break from the plight of wearing make up daily. The sun gives our skin a natural glow and make up will only melt on our skin anyway!

 

Sweaty skin

As any of us who have ever run for the bus can confirm, make up often runs when we’re warm and sweaty. When out in the sunshine on a hot, humid day, we will get sweaty with very little exercise or movement and our full face of makeup will begin to, for lack of a better word, melt and slide off your face in a sticky mess. This is not an ideal look and it’s unsurprisingly quite uncomfortable too! If you’re partaking in summer activities like relaxing on the beach, swimming in the sea, doing yoga or taking walks in the sun, you’re honestly better off without a sweaty face caked in make up.

 

The sun dries the skin

Those with bad spots or acne-prone skin may cringe at the idea of leaving the house without make up and we get it, we really do. It’s honestly not doing your skin any good though, as even the best quality make up blocks pores. The heat of the sun dries out skin, encouraging pores to close up and giving it a chance to heal. It’s not all good though, as explained by Annet King, global director of education at Dermalogica. “The sun exposure will also cause dehydration, which in turn stimulates oil production as your skin tries to correct the issue. That, of course, means you will end up with another breakout.” So basically, avoid the products and give your skin a break. Use a high quality sun cream and most of all, enjoy the sun in moderation!

 

Save time

Save anything between 10 and 30 minutes of your day. Depending on how many products we use, some of us spend much longer than others perfecting our look, but when going make up free, that time is shortened to 0! Spend that extra time in the sunshine, it only comes around once a year – why would you want to waste your time indoors in front of a mirror?

 

Give it a break

If you’re taking time off to spend outdoors, your skin should get a break too! Treat it to a natural glow and let your pores breathe without being coated in make up, creams and chemicals.

After only a couple of days of freeing your skin from everything from foundation to primer, concealer, blusher and the rest of the contents of your make up bag, you will honestly feel better for it and your skin will thank you for it by looking visibly brighter and healthier. 

 

Mascara hates water

Mascara hates sweat, water and especially swimming. If you live in, or are visiting, somewhere with a lot of sunshine and humidity, waterproof mascara is the obvious choice. But after a few days without a daily coating of lash-drying-out mascara, you will see that this truly is the right option. Your lashes will toughen up, becoming stronger and over time, noticeably thicker. 

 

It will affect your tan 

After removing the make up that’s covered your face all day, you will more than likely find that while your body has become a naturally sun-kissed tanned colour, your face still looks the exact same colour as it did before you put the make up on. As you top up your tan, you may have to use more bronzer to give the impression that your face is the same shade of brown as the rest of yourself. Save all the stress and let your face see the sun! 

 

You will save money 

As noted in the previous point, buying a darker shade of foundation, bronzer and also buying waterproof mascara is all unnecessarily expensive when you could simply go without. Why waste money on extra products when you could buy a new beach bag, sandals and lilo for the pool or sea? 

 

You will take better care of your skin

When our skin is make up free, we notice our spots and blemishes more easily. But if you decide that make up isn’t the option you want to go with for the appearance of good skin, you will find that you’re more likely to take the time to take care of your skin. Eating healthier, drinking more water and less soda are the easiest ways to do this, followed by the use of hydrating face masks and eye-bag serums. Plus, it’s easier to moisturise and top up sun cream when you’re not worried about ruining your make up!

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Summer Skin Protection

It’s officially the first day of summer 2018! Every season of the year is a perfect time for rejoicing in the beauty of nature and appreciating the world around us, but there’s something extra magical about summer and the joy that the sunshine brings. For those of us that don’t burn like a hotdog in the summer sun, it’s great to stay active and soak up the rays. This can lead to a lot of sitting around doing very little and drinking litres of water, which don’t compensate for the dehydrating summer sun and delicious cocktails we couldn’t resist having ‘just one more’ of.

 

Drink water… lots and lots of water
Those of us spending time in the sun should drink at least 3 litres of water. This is simply to keep our bodies hydrated – even when you’re not sweating, you will become dehydrated quickly. Yes, you might spend your day running back and forth to the toilet – and this isn’t ideal, especially when out in public – but would you not rather take that over dehydration and a raging headache any day of the year?! We sure know we would! Those of us who have experienced sun stroke know that it is frightening, incredibly painful and has the potential to leave you bed bound (yes, really). Those of you who haven’t experienced it, do yourselves a favour and protect yourself. Your body will thank you! Don’t forget to eat enough to keep up your energy levels in the high temperature – fruits or smoothies are ideal for an energy boost without making you feel bloated.

 

Sun cream, sun cream everywhere
Check the dates on last years’ sun cream and lotions, if there is anything left in the bottle! There is a little image on every bottle and tube with a number inside to indicate how long it will last after having been bought. No products should be used past their use-by date and if you cannot remember when a particular cream was bought, that is not a good sign. If you have any leftovers from previous years that have exceeded this then it’s honestly best to bin them and get yourself to the shop for replacements. Unless you’re confident it was bought last year and the image says 18 (for 18 months) you’re not really good to go…

SPF lotions should be applied 30 minutes before being exposed to the sun and frequently whilst outside – although it’s similar to putting oil in a pan… too much will effectively roast your skin so it’s important not to get obsessive with reapplying it. And don’t forget to reapply if you feel like it has been rubbed off on a blanket or clothes and after swimming or taking a dip!

Remember to use an after-sun lotion when arriving home that will moisturise your skin. Many also contain aloe vera – your skin will stay soft, be less likely to peel and many after-sun creams will assist in prolonging your suntan.

 

Protect Your Head
Never forget your sun hat when out and about in the sun. The sunshine hits your head first and can increase the risk of dehydration, plus the skin on the top of your head may become damaged over time. Shade your head and save yourself from an on-coming headache with a cheap, light-weight sun hat. If you don’t have one then please take the time to buy one. This goes for children too – in fact, even doggie sun hats exist!…

 

Now, girls
This is one specifically for the girls and most of us here at HNS can agree with this… Don’t be afraid to wear your bikini instead of a bra. Granted, they’re not ideal when going for long walks as they don’t offer the same level of support provided by a bra, but it can’t be denied that a few days without the tight figure-hugging wire isn’t a bad thing, especially when the heat is getting to you and sweat starts forming. Bikini materials are designed for quick-drying after swimming in a pool or the sea so that makes them ideal for coping with sweat too!

 

In fact, avoid anything tight!
Any tight clothing is bound to stick to your skin after not too long of this temperature. This will lead to excessive and unnecessary sweating which may cause the material to run against your skin and cause sores! We will skip the horror story though and just strongly advise you take your outfit into consideration!…

 

Choose your footwear wisely
Flip flops will ruin your feet and skin after not-too-long, while pumps will become sweaty and may even need a good wash after returning home. A good quality pair of sandals that do not have anything between the toes are ideal for this weather. They may affect your tan, creating tan lines, but that’s a small price to pay for pain-free walking!

 

There are so many rules for summer time! Don’t forget to pack sun cream, but don’t use it too often or it will act like oil does in a pan and burn your skin to a crisp. Don’t forget to drink litres of water to stay hydrated and always take an umbrella and sun hat to protect your skin from the sun’s harmful rays. It all seems a little boring so when all we want to do is have fun, sometimes these essential rules get forgotten. Try to protect yourself though – your skin will thank you if you look after it and the last thing anyone wants is to end up on bed rest covered in burns or with heat-induced sunstroke, so it’s easier to just stay safe!

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Has Your Make Up Bag Expired?

The Downside of Beauty: the Summary

  • No matter how expensive the product is, it won’t last forever
  • Check for an image on the packaging while shopping for beauty products to know how long they will last – learn how to find it below!
  • There are some majorly concerning side-effects from using expired products and it doesn’t matter if you only use something once a month – you’re still at risk.

When it comes to looking after ourselves, us girls sure know how to do it properly. From makeup to hair care, moisturising almost every inch of our bodies and painting our nails, many of us love spending some girly time treating ourselves and making ourselves look and, more importantly, feel good. Despite this, it seems that the products we use might not be as good for us as they make us feel. Did you know that products have an expiry date just like the food you eat and the drinks you enjoy? We’re all guilty of having done it at some point or another, but is it really a big deal? Sorry to break the news but yes, it really is. The expiry date is also known as the PAO – period after opening.

 

Where can I find the expiry date? 

On every beauty product, from makeup to hair spray, moisturiser, shower wash and even shampoo and conditioner, you will find an expiry date. There is a little symbol that is a requirement for products sold in many countries that have a shelf life of over 30 months to remind you when to replace each item after opening the product. A little number within a tub-shaped image, usually found on the back of the packet, bottle or tub, will let you know whether the item will last you a long time. Generally, the number will be 12, 18, 24, 36, or, in the worst case, 6 or even 3 and will be followed by an ‘M’ for ‘months’. 36 months (3 years) is ideal for a product you are gifting to yourself or someone else, as you should have more than enough time to finish it.

 Unfortunately, you will find that the majority of mascaras last only 6 months, but, devastatingly enough, some last only 3 – we just thought we’d warn you! When buying makeup online, check in the description for the expiration date before buying or ask previous buyers (Amazon is great for this, with the option to ask questions to buyers) or contact the seller directly. Add a little description on how to find the date as a surprising amount of people don’t know – although we live in hope that all sellers do!

Product Expiry Dates Icons

Are there any exceptions?

Ok, so you’re currently going through your makeup bag and realising that everything in there has expiry dates. There are very few exceptions though, sorry to break the news! Nail varnish is one example of an exception and although some probably do have expiration dates, the majority don’t. This is because it’s not put directly onto your skin so won’t cause any damage after a long time of use. Due to the way it is created, we can all tell when it is expired due to it solidifying in the bottle and becoming unusable. Luckily for us though, it can usually be revived with a splash of nail varnish remover and continue to be used…

 

But can’t I just ignore the date?

Ok, we know what you’re thinking and we get it. Beauty and hair care products can be VERY expensive and we all know the feeling of wanting to keep them until they’re well and truly finished… Technically, yes of course you can ignore the expiry date. But would you consider eating a week-old piece of bread? No, none of us would… Now, imagine putting that piece of bread on your face. Ok, so it’s a strange thing to imagine and obviously it’s not the same – make-up doesn’t go green or visibly mouldy. But hopefully, you understand the point we’re trying to make. You wouldn’t eat out of date food, so it seems logical that you probably shouldn’t put out of date products on your skin, regardless of how expensive they were. Expiry dates are decided for are reason. They specify the time in which your products will be of the highest quality. It is worth spending some time checking through your makeup cupboard before replacing essential items and you will definitely see the difference in the health of your skin. Take pride in taking care of your skin and it will thank you.

 

How will expired products affect me?

You often won’t notice a difference in the product itself but it is possible that over time the texture or even smell might change. We don’t have any shares in expensive make-up companies before you ask, so no we won’t benefit from you replacing your expensive products… you don’t just have to take our word for it though! Hadley King, M.D. is the dermatologist at SKINNEY Medspa in New York City and explains: “The consistency of the product is going to change over time … They’re going to dry out, get clumpy and not apply as smoothly.” They can also begin to harbour bacteria, leading to lumps and bumps in your once-smooth skin. Hadley goes on to explain that sun creams and foundations containing SPF protection will not be as successful in protecting your skin from harmful rays once expired, in the same way that anti-aging and acne creams will stop doing the job you bought them to do.

Expired make up products can lead to skin irritation and an itching feeling after wearing them for a long time, as explained by the wonderful Hadley. “All of the molecules in these products can break down into something else, and you can have a reaction to it”. That annoying itching sensation can lead to redness, inflammation, rashes, or, in the worst-case scenarios, even swelling or blisters. Sorry for the nightmare-inducing facts… it’s scary to imagine, we know. But it’s so important that we protect our skin. We do, after all, need it for a lifetime.

 

Eye makeup risks

Many of us have experienced conjunctivitis at one time or another, usually after absent-mindedly sharing eye makeup with friends, but it’s possible for expired eye makeup to be the cause of infections and pink-eye too. “And what about my favourite red lipstick?”, you ask with panic in your voice? Swelling is the general risk. Sorry ladies, we know you might like the idea of having larger lips, but swelling from expired lipstick is not the ideal way to enhance your pucker.

 

In summary, taking the time to root through your makeup bag and lotions collection is essential if you want to protect your health and skin. It might be time for an expensive shopping trip but can we really put a price on our health? Apparently, yes we can… And don’t forget, the expiry date is not relevant until after the product has been opened, which makes it easier when you’re gifted with piles of bath products, moisturisers and make up galore on your birthday.

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Stay Safe as Temperatures Soar Today

It may not yet be officially summer time, but that doesn’t mean you should forget about your health. Those of us living in England are set to enjoy the day hottest April day since 1949 today (that’s a total of 69 years!) and the temperature resembles that of our summer time… sometimes… with the scorching sun hitting us with a temperature of 28C (82F) in many areas of the country. Staying healthy should be a priority but since us Brits don’t see much of the sun, many of us prioritise rushing to the beach or local park to find a good spot, forgetting to cover up, lotion up and drink a lot more water than they’re used to drinking.

 

Protect Your Skin

The last thing anyone wants is to resemble a lobster before summer time even arrives! The most common places for people to burn is usually on the nose and shoulders and one of the most commonly forgotten place to use sun cream on is the ears! Use an after-sun lotion when arriving home that will moisturise your skin and contains aloe vera – your skin will stay soft, be less likely to peel and some after-sun creams even claim to assist in prolonging your tan.

 

Protect Your Health

Those of us spending time in the sun should drink at least 3 litres of water per person. This is simply to keep our bodies hydrated – even when you’re not sweating, you will become dehydrated quickly and avoid the risk of sun stroke – a terrifying painful headache that may leave you bed-bound. So root for your keep-cool bag and fill it with bottles of water and a selection of fruits or smoothies for a much-needed boost of energy.

 

Stay Loose

Ok, by this we’re referring to your clothes. Don’t go out with the intention of tanning your skin in the sun all day – resembling a lobster is not a great look, it’s painful and it’s a quick way to damage your skin in both the short and long-term… Take loose-fitting clothes with you to avoid hot and sticky fabrics sticking to you, especially when (not if, in this weather!) you get sweaty. A thin cardigan or scarf will protect your shoulders and back from the harmfully-scorching rays.

 

All of these points apply to you if you’re working today too – protect your skin with sun cream for when you’re outside on your lunch break, wear loose-fitting clothes for if the multiple fans around the office aren’t enough to keep you cool and drink as much water as you can manage.

 

Look after yourself and don’t travel anywhere today without your sunglasses, sunhat, money for an ice-cream and extra water if necessary and a good book! We only live once and your skin needs to last you that lifetime. Many skin care companies actually advise that we stay out of the sun between 11am and 3pm so if you intend to be out during these times then you need to be extra careful or you will regret it – sorry to break the news! You will definitely benefit from a beach umbrella to cover yourself from the rays during this time, known in many countries as siesta time.

 

Have a wonderful day and look after yourself. Take a second to share with us what factor of sun cream you prefer using in our poll below and see what the most popular results are – you might be inspired to up your skin protection a notch if you haven’t been already by these crazy temperatures!

What factor of sun cream do you most frequently use for yourself?

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Moisturiser (and the Mistakes You May Be Making)

Do you find that you only remember to moisturise when your skin is dry or during this chilly time of the year? If so, you’re not alone. Many of us make the common mistake of only applying moisturiser when we get dry skin, as opposed to using it daily to prevent skin becoming dry in the first place! Creams should be applied after washing but before your skin has completely dried. It is actually better to moisturise wet skin not dry skin because whilst your skin is wet it is being rehydrated and will appreciate the added moisture provided by the cream.

Do you use moisturiser every day?

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Why shouldn’t I use too much moisturiser? 

It doesn’t matter how dry your skin is – you shouldn’t use more moisturiser than you would when it’s not dry. The excess cream is useless as it will only sit as an extra layer on your skin, clogging your pores as your skin is unable to absorb it. This can actually lead to overly dry skin. We know, it isn’t fair! The same goes for when we overuse moisturiser. Using it on too much of a regular basis is damaging for our delicate skin and leads to it becoming dependent on moisturiser. As you can probably imagine, this effectively makes your skin lazy and makes it look tired and dull.
 

So, how much moisturiser should I actually use? 

According to experts at WebMD, we should be using a nickel-sized splodge for our whole face. In British terms, this equates to slightly larger than a penny, which as you know, is really not that much. Moisturiser also shouldn’t be applied more than twice a day. Using much more than this more than twice daily is a quick way to suffocate your skin and pores, doing you no favours. The effects can be damaging for your skin in both the short and long-term.
 

Wait, I should actually moisturise my oily skin? 

We know what you’re thinking but yes, just because your skin is oily doesn’t mean you shouldn’t use moisturiser or that the cream will make it worse. Our skin produces a natural oil called ‘sebum’ and without moisturiser, your skin will actually begin overproducing it in higher quantities in an attempt to keep itself naturally moisturised.
 

Do I need a moisturiser with SPF? 

In short: yes, you do. A longer explanation is that yes, we all for regardless of our skin type. To protect our skin from UV-damage and excessive aging we should use a SPF moisturiser every morning before leaving the house. It’s unnecessary to use an SPF cream at night time however, as there is no sunshine so no harmful rays so the cream will only clog your pores. We know it’s not ideal to buy two moisturisers, but as long as they have good lengths of expiry dates, it’s definitely worth the extra cost. Learn more about product expiry dates in our blog post here.
 

Do I need a skincare routine? 

Yes, remember the phrase: ‘cleanse, tone, treat, moisturise’ and you can’t go wrong. Many of us are lazy with our skin and just splodge on creams in the morning and before bed but getting into a routine is a great way of keeping your skin refreshed all year round.
 

Ideally, you should begin by cleansing with a simple liquid cleanser and water, tone with a quality toner, treat with a blemish or acne cream if necessary and finish with moisturiser. Always take the time to check Google or Amazon for reviews before going on a skin care shopping trip to ensure you choose quality products that don’t strip skin of natural oils or lead to spot breakouts for a large number of customers. If you have oily skin, for example, search specifically for skin care products for oily skin. You get the picture!

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A Six Step Guide to Luscious Locks

Hair is something that we all hope will last a lifetime but over time, our locks can become weak and lifeless. There are many factors that we can contribute to this, from stress to many illnesses and an unhealthy diet. Another factor is this time of year in particular – with the oncoming change of season, it’s bound to become cold, windy and rainy in many countries worldwide, with a lack of rejuvenating sunlight. It may start to feel like you will never have strong, vibrant hair again… So, what can you do? There is no harm in trying some of our top tips to see if your hair becomes revitalised, thick and luscious!

1. Change your shower routine
If you shower more than 3 times a week, use a hair grip to keep your hair out of the water every other day – your locks should not be washed more than 2 to 3 times in one week. Hot water can also be very damaging for hair and should be avoided. In fact, this leads on to the next point…

2. Treat your hair to some cold water
Next time you have a bath or shower, try (quickly) rinsing your hair with some cold water. Depending on how you deal with the cold, use a little or a lot. Be warned that if the water is too cold on your scalp, you may collapse from shock… but otherwise, this simple trick revitalises your roots and after a few washes you should start to notice the difference with shinier and smoother hair.
A tried and tested technique for using minimum amounts of cold water:
In the shower, turn down the temperature slightly (while facing the shower head away from your skin!) and rinse the water over your hair. Brush it through and repeat. Perfecting this technique will mean the water never touches your skin, although for those not a fan of the cold, this works with even with just a splash of cold water. Don’t forget to use a hair grip to keep your cold hair off your skin while you get out of the shower!

3. Massage your scalp
When using conditioner, massage it into your scalp to help it work its way to your roots. This process allows the conditioner to work better, while the massage strengthens your scalp. It’s important to be quite rough and not gentle with your roots – as long as you don’t end up with a headache! The more often you massage, the stronger your hair will become, preventing strands from falling out. This will in time lead to thicker hair.

 

4. Use less of the heat products
Many people get out of the shower/bath and are straight over to their hairdryer. Hair hates the heat, especially when it is still damp. Although convenient (especially for girls with longer hair), hair also doesn’t react particularly well to being wrapped in a towel (often referred to as a ‘turban towel’). Instead of doing this, try dabbing your hair with a dry towel and massaging the roots. A common misconception is that putting your hair in a towel is enough to fully dry it, however, it is worth releasing your hair occasionally and brushing it through. Maybe put it up in a clip – this allows it to dry naturally while keeping your damp hair off your neck. With enough time, this method will completely dry your hair, but if you have places to be and must use a hair dryer, at least use the lowest heat setting to prevent causing damage.

The same goes with straighteners and heated curlers… although for unruly curly hair, the oils and proteins in avocados have incredible powers in smoothing the hair (apparently…). If you’re not feeling adventurous, invest in a good quality heat-defence spray and follow the instructions to keep your hair feeling and looking healthy.

 

5. Stop using tight bobbles
Many ballerinas who tie their hair up tightly every day can tell you that after a while, your hair will begin to pull from the roots, leaving bald patches which can often be painful. Before using a hair bobble, always give it a stretch (like you would do with a balloon!) to loosen the elastic.
Many people find it effective to tie their hair up before bed time to prevent waking up with a face full of hair, or worse, getting spots from oils in the hair rubbing against your skin. While it is useful for many reasons, try tying your hair in a simple plait before bed instead of doing a ponytail or bun as these can pull hair out and lead to headaches if tied too tightly.

 

6. Dry shampoo – yay or nay?
We all know that dry shampoo is like a bottle of powdery magic, especially on a Monday morning when there isn’t time for a shower because you just had to have that extra lie-in (don’t worry, we’re not judging), but is it doing more damage than good for your hair and scalp? Hair care experts advise that dry shampoo should be used in moderation and shouldn’t be used for more than three days in a row, otherwise your scalp can become irritated, leading to itchy and flaky skin. This is because dry shampoo dehydrates hair and makes it tangle easily, making it weaker so the strands snap easier during brushing. Don’t forget to wash out dry shampoo properly before washing with shampoo and conditioner as this will only lead to product build-up.


Don’t forget to always spray dry shampoo from at least 20-30cm away from your roots and keep shaking the can in circles to ensure even distribution. Brush through your hair after a minute of allowing the dry shampoo to do its job.

 

These are not one-off cures for luscious locks!
Hopefully these tips and tricks will help you to improve the quality of your locks. They need repeating and are not one-off cures for improving the quality and healthiness of your hair. Over time, you should start to notice the benefits as your hair becomes shinier and stronger, meaning the strands will break less easily, leaving you with thick and luscious locks.