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Benefits of Sandalwood Oil

Sandalwood Oil Bottle and Chips

For centuries, sandalwood has been highly respected and even worshiped, especially in the Hindu religion, where it is considered to be holy. In every step of life, it is considered indispensable, from birth to death. It is used to anoint babies on their birthdays, to decorate brides and grooms, and, mixed with flowers, it is used to embalm bodies. It is also used on the funeral pyre when cremating the dead.

Beyond its cultural uses, it is also a great antiseptic. The essential oil of sandalwood is safe for both internal and external applications. When ingested, it is said to help protect internal wounds and ulcers from infections. When applied to the skin, it protects wounds, sores, boils, and pimples from developing infections or from becoming septic.

Sandalwood paste and its essential oil is also an effective anti-inflammatory agent. It has a nice cooling effect and provides relief from all types of inflammations in the brain, and in the digestive, nervous, circulatory, and excretory systems. It can be used for infections, fevers, the side effects of antibiotics, poisoning, insect bites, or wounds. Sandalwood essential oil is also particularly beneficial in cases of nervous and circulatory inflammations.

I’d have to say that Sandalwood is my favorite oil because it has so much to offer.

Tips for Color-Treated Hair

Cortney Garig with Blue Hair

I’m a person who colors her hair blue. I only dye my hair once a month, which many people don’t believe. But you should believe it because it’s true! But I still find it very important to take extra care of my color-treated hair.

  1. Wash your hair as little as possible

    This may sound gross, but I only wash my hair about six times a month. Yes, my hair does get oily, but in a healthy way. Over-washing your hair not only strips the color, but also makes the scalp produce more oils to compensate for losing its natural oils. My advice: try using a shampoo like Scalp Benefits or another cleanser to remove dirt and stick with Color Conserve conditioner for the ends of your hair. This is my approach but other people have different techniques. Personally, this has helped me remove dirt and add moisture while doing as little shampooing as possible.

  2. Rinse your hair with lukewarm or cool water

    I can almost hear you exclaim, “Are you crazy? Cold showers? No!” But this is not really what I mean. It doesn’t have to be cold, just a nice cool temperature. Why is this so?

    • It seals your cuticle—the outer layer of hair—from the environment. When you leave the cuticle open, you are leaving it so that anything in the environment can get inside your hair. That can make your hair brittle and dry.
    • It promotes shine and growth.
    • It makes your skin soft. If you have dry skin, this helps make the layers of your skin seal up as well, keeping it soft and supple.
  3. Try to stay away from heat

    I know this sounds laughable, but it is unhealthy to curl or straighten every day, especially if you bleach your hair or dye it often. Your hair can slowly but progressively break more and more.

  4. Try supplementing your approach

    • Braid your hair to add texture.
    • Add smoothing crème, slicking your hair back to wearing it in a bun. This gives a straightened look.
    • Use roller sets for a curly look.
    • Twist your hair with texture crème for a beach look.

Health Benefits of Flaxseed

Golden Flaxseed Grain, Unground

Flaxseed warms the human body. The seeds need to be eaten as a ground meal. If eaten whole, flaxseed is not digested by the body. But if ground and taken daily with water, flaxseed provides the appropriate amounts of fiber to keep your digestive system working, as long as you keep your fluid intake high.

Flax is well known for its cholesterol-reducing properties. A couple of spoonfuls of ground flaxseed provides the short-chain omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3 fatty acids are generally present in fish oil. If you rarely eat omega-3’s you’ll be missing out on the benefits of lower cholesterol and beautiful skin.

Flaxseed is another way to get nutrition for pescatarians. Eaten in combination with nuts and fish, flaxseed can be a great help. The alpha-Linolenic acid—an omega-3 fatty acid—helps reduce the inflammations that can contribute to chronic heart ailments, arthritis, asthma, and diabetes. It can even help guard your body against colon cancer.

The high amount of fiber in ground flaxseed is responsible for its cholesterol-lowering effects. High fiber diets help you feel full, so you tend to eat a little less. In turn, this can stabilize your blood sugar and help your intestines function well.

To me, antioxidants and phytochemicals spell an advertisement for an anti-aging cream. Flaxseed contains lignans—a type of phytoestrogen—which work in our intestines and convert to become substances that balance out hormones in women. These have been proven to promote fertility, reduce the risk of breast cancer, and reduce the symptoms of menopause.

Hydrating Effects of Serums

Aveda Tulasara Serums

Light, silky, and fast-absorbing, facial serums are a must-have skincare product. They are especially useful if your skin has taken a beating over the summer and is in need of moisture ASAP. Truthfully, the fact that they have instant hydrating effects on the skin makes them almost addictive.

Serums are water-based moisturizers that contain a high concentration of active ingredients, such as vitamins, antioxidants, and/or plant extracts. It hydrates your skin and makes it look more radiant. Unlike regular moisturizers, serums do not contain occlusive emollients like shea butter, so they penetrate the skin quickly as opposed to sitting on its surface.

Serums have the smallest-sized molecules of all skincare products. That’s how they can penetrate deep into the skin. It’s also why, on a molecular level, they are especially effective for battling free-radical damage. When skin is damaged by the sun, molecules in the skin can lose an atom and become unstable, referred to as a free-radical. To make matters worse, the unstable molecule steals an atom from a stable molecule to cause more havoc within our skin.

Generally, serums’ silky texture comes from smoothing ingredients such as glycerin or “slip” agents such as silicone. Some are treatment-oriented, perhaps to target dark spots or firm the skin. So make sure to check the package before use. You should consider adding a serum to your routine whatever your skin type to increase skin hydration.

How do you use a serum? Apply, wait five minutes to let it sink in, then apply your regular moisturizer. If you have oily skin, a serum can be worn alone.

Incredible Hair Shows

Woman with Elaborate Hairstyle

For a hairstylist, a hair show is an incredible career-changing event. If you haven’t been to one yet, you must. Even if you’re not a hairstylist, it is still a great experience. It’s like an art show for hair. And it is where hairstylists and beauty industry leaders from all over the world show their best work, the techniques they use, and top-selling products used to create the look.

My first hair show was at the Shadow Lounge in Oakland. Many Bay Area hairstylists who specialize in braids, extensions, weaves, color, dreadlocks, and any hairstyles that involve textured hair. Many different salons put on a whole show to present their best work and also to network with other salons.

I was able to do the makeup for the entire model crew of the well-known salon “Nappy or Not”. It was a great experience because they wanted very bright and dramatic makeup looks to contrast with the outfits and the hair designs. I valued it particularly because I learned how to work with textured hair, braids, and extensions. It taught me the backstage life of a big event like this hair show.

As hairstylists, or any beauty industry leader, it is true that we never stop learning and we will always continue to learn, just as I did with my first hair show. This event changed my outlook on my career and has motivated me to continue to grow my talent.

Avocado Hair Masks

Avocado Mask in Hair

Initially, the early Egyptians were the first to recognize avocado’s benefits for skin and hair, and now these benefits are well known. The Egyptians used this fruit to promote hair growth, prevent hair loss, add shine and luster to the hair.

Avocado is not only beneficial for skin and health, but this amazing fruit also has many benefits for hair that will surprise you. The oil of avocado is easily absorbed in the hair, therefore, it goes well with dry hair.

You can use raw fruit or avocado oil to get its rich vitamins and minerals. There are many natural avocado hair treatments to remedy different hair conditions. It works wonders when it is used as a hair mask. It nourishes as well as strengthens the hair.

Natural Beauty Tips

  • While making an avocado or any fruit mask, blend or mash it thoroughly into a lump-free paste. If you have small fruit bits in your mask, it would be difficult to wash them out entirely. If you face such a situation, simply use a comb to remove the bits. It’s a tiresome process, but you will get the job done.
  • If you have oily roots then don’t put the avocado mask onto the first inch or so of your hair. On the other hand, if your hair is dry or frizzy, spread the mask all over your hair and scalp. Pay special attention to the hair ends, as that is where your hair is mostly damaged.
  • If your hair is thin or limp, skip the deep conditioning masks, as they tend to weigh your hair down.
  • Always try to dry your hair naturally, without using a hairdryer, to avert damaged, frizzy hair.

Avocado Mask Recipes

Avocado and Honey Hair Mask With Olive Oil

Honey is a rich source of vitamins that strengthen scalp and hair. Further, it works as a humectant to make your hair strands retain moisture. Olive oil has excellent hydrating properties, so it protects your tresses from damage and is very useful for those who use lots of heat on their hair usually. You can also add in a few drops of lavender essential oil, which is a natural treatment for the scalp that helps get rid of dandruff and itchy skin. Moreover, it adds a feel-good smell to the mask. It’s one of the best hair masks for dry hair!

Ingredients

  • 1 ripe avocado (pitted and scooped out)
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • A few drops lavender essential oil (optional)

Method

Mash the avocado until it forms a smooth paste without any lumps. Mix all the ingredients in a mixing bowl, and blend them all together, until the mixture forms a smooth paste of uniform consistency.

Damp your hair with water and apply the mask onto your hair, paying extra attention to the hair ends. Massage the mixture a little bit. Clip your hair onto the top of your head and then cover with a shower cap. Allow the mixture to sit for about 40-45 minutes.

Remove the shower cap, rinse your hair thoroughly as many times it requires to remove the mask entirely, and then wash and condition your hair as you normally do.

Avocado and Banana Hair Mask

This provides a deep conditioning treatment for dry hair. This recipe can even maintain the gloss on your naturally curly hair.

Ingredients

  • 1 ripe banana
  • 1 ripe avocado
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • A few drops of your favorite essential oil, such as lavender, rose, sweet orange or jasmine (optional)

Method

Blend the ripe banana and ripe avocado together, until they form a smooth paste without any lumps. Put the mixture in a mixing bowl; add in olive oil and 2-3 drops of essential oil. Stir all the ingredients together until you have a smooth mixture of uniform consistency.

Damp your hair with water, and apply the mask onto hair—including scalp if you want—paying extra attention to the hair ends. Massage the mixture a little bit. Clip your hair onto the top of your head, and then cover with a shower cap. Allow the mixture to sit for about 15 minutes, longer if you prefer.

Remove the shower cap, rinse your hair thoroughly as many times it requires removing the mask entirely and then wash and condition your hair as usual.

Avocado, Egg Yolk Hair Mask

This mask has a number of benefits for hair. Use this mask for volume, growth, and conditioning of your tresses. Avocado and egg yolk are also very effective for softening, hydrating, and conditioning hair naturally.

When using any mask containing egg, never use hot or warm water on your hair, as this will cook the egg and you will be stuck with egg bits in your hair.

Ingredients

  • ½ ripe avocado
  • 1 egg yolk

Method

You can use a blender to blend the avocado and egg yolk until they turn into a uniform paste without any lumps. Or you can whisk the egg yolk until it forms a frothy liquid, mash the avocado until it turns into a lump-free paste, and then mix the two together.

Damp your hair with water, and then apply the hair mask with your fingers starting from your scalp and working all the way until you reach hair ends. Massage the mask gently into your scalp for few minutes to stimulate blood flow. Let the mask sit for about 15-20 minutes, longer if you desire.

Rinse your hair thoroughly, as many times as needed to remove all the traces of the mask. Shampoo your hair, condition and rinse your hair as you normally do.

Avocado and Olive Oil Hair Treatment

If your hair is dry, damaged, and frizzy, use this soothing home remedy with olive oil and avocado as its two main ingredients. You can use this mix as an avocado deep hair conditioner to moisturize your mane and restore its lustrous shine. Both these ingredients have moisturizing qualities and will leave your hair looking shiny and feeling soft. Avocado has biotin, a vitamin that helps to strengthen your hair. Olive oil smooths frizz, nurses hair damage, and helps in removing tangles.

Ingredients

  • 1 ripe avocado
  • ¼ cup steel-cut or rolled oats
  • ⅛ to ¼ cup olive oil
  • 1 cup milk

Method

Mash the avocado into a lump-free paste and mix it with the oats. Add in olive oil, using the larger amount if your hair is dry. Mix in milk and thoroughly stir all the ingredients together until the mixture turns into a smooth paste.

Apply the mask onto your hair, starting from the scalp till the hair ends. Wait for 30 minutes, and rinse the mask out with water, as many times as needed to remove all traces of the mask. You may then shampoo and condition your hair as usual.

DIY Bath Recipe

Bathtub

When life is getting too hectic and you need to wind down, there are few things more relaxing than a warm bath. The warmth of the water with your body submerged in it makes a bath relaxing. But what makes a bath good for your skin are the ingredients you add to it.

You can easily create your own bath soak recipe from pantry ingredients. Aim to add ingredients that appeal to your senses, are good for your skin, and have the proper consistency for bathwater.

All the ingredients to this bath soak have a purpose. Milk works to both hydrate and soften skin. Baking soda is a great detoxifier and also helps to alkalize the body. The combination of jasmine and ylang-ylang, provide soothing and relaxing aromas.

Here’s a DIY bath recipe that will leave your skin baby soft!

Benefits of this Bath

  • Relieves Stress
  • Rejuvenates tired skin
  • Detoxifies body
  • Helps sooth tired or aching muscles
  • Helps soften dry or dehydrated skin

Ingredients

  • 1 cup organic whole milk
  • 1 tablespoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon raw honey
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla (in jojoba oil)
  • 6 drops ylang-ylang
  • 6 drops jasmine

Method

  1. Cook the milk, baking soda, honey, and vanilla over low heat until warm.
  2. Remove from heat. Add the ylang ylang and the jasmine, then stir them all together.
  3. Pour mixture into bathwater. Enjoy for up to twenty minutes.

Day to Night Make-up

We all have busy schedules, live fast, and get no sleep.

As strong, beautiful women in the world of cosmetology, esthetics, and beauty, we enjoy our days being filled with clients and sales, but sometimes we wanna grab dinner and drinks with our girlfriends at night. Or maybe the guy you’ve had your eye on is finally taking you to get a bite to eat.

You go through your day, performing services and working hard. Maybe you have sweat stains. You’re looking forward to your night out, but you only have half an hour to change from your work outfit to your cute night-time outfit.

A basic day time make-up look usually includes foundation, concealer, setting powder, a light eye shadow, mascara, and just a pinch of blush. Now, you want to add a little bronzer and smoke out your shadow for a sultry, sexy look. Take a crease brush, throw on a darker shade and blend, blend, blend! You will create a smokey eye look that is sure to look amazing. Add some eyeliner, only make it a wing.

If you can commit to taking less than 10 minutes, then throw on some bronzer to contour those cheeks and forehead, some highlight to give some glow, then use a fabulous lipstick to complete your look and you’re ready to hit the town.

Just a couple easy steps and, presto, you’ve turned your day look into a night look and you even have time to throw on some heels. Now, about that shower…

Outer Peace Pads

Aveda Outer Peace Pads

If you don’t have time to do a full cleanse during your day—maybe after the gym—and you always feel like your skin isn’t good enough, then the Outer Peace Pads might be a good solution for you. They are full of ingredients that are great for busy people who are acne-prone or have oily skin. The ingredients are simple and plant-based. The main ingredients are tamanu, amla, boswellia, and saw palmetto. The aroma, however, is lemon tree oil and rose geranium oil.

Tamanu is a good ingredient for healing the skin. It is used as a topical healing agent which makes it good for people who have acne lesions.

Amla has very high levels of vitamin C. Vitamin C is very good for strengthening the tissue of the body. That characteristic is good for people with acne because it can prevent scarring or acne blemishes from staying for extended periods of time.

Boswellia, a type of frankincense, is used to treat inflammation. This is valuable in acne treatment because it helps reduce the amount of irritation and redness on the skin because of the breakout.

Saw palmetto is good for the skin because it contains a large number of polysaccharides and will strengthen the body’s immune system. This will help decrease breakouts.

The pads are also useful in facials. They are good for closing the pores after extractions and are also a great toner for people with acne-prone skin.

I think you’ll like them.

Five Ways to Curl Your Hair

Brunette Woman with Curly Hair

  1. This easy, no heat technique will give you tighter, more natural-looking curls. On damp hair, use long spiral rollers in varying sizes that you can get from Target. Start from the bottom and work your way up your head. Take a section of hair similar to the size of the curler you are using. Twist your hair around the curler, away from your face. The spiral curlers are flexible and you can fold the top and bottom of the curler over your hair to keep it in place. Then, simply go to sleep. When you wake up the next morning, start taking the curlers out at the bottom and work your way up. Gently use your fingers to separate your curls and use a lightweight oil like Dry Remedy oil. Depending on your hair density and texture, put 2 to 4 drops in your hands. Rub your hands together and scrunch the oil into the ends of your hair to eliminate any frizziness.

  2. An even easier, no heat technique that gives you more of a body wave. On damp hair, use a headband of your choice and place it over your head like a crown. Starting at your front hairline, take medium-sized sections of hair and wrap it around your headband, away from your face. Continue until you reach the back of your head and repeat on the other side. All of your hair should be tucked into your headband and you can go to sleep. When you wake up in the morning, simply unwrap your hair from the headband, take the headband off and you’re done. I like to use a large barrel wand or curling iron to touch up a couple pieces around my face but that’s optional.

  3. For another loose curl technique, you can use hot curlers. You can buy them in a set and they come with clips to use as well. On dry hair, starting in the back, take sections of hair similar to the size of the curler you are using. Wrap your hair around the curler and use the provided clip to keep your hair in place. After all of your hair is in curlers, get ready for your day. Do your makeup, get dressed, etc. After you are done getting ready, take the curlers out of your hair and gently separate the curls with your fingers. Use some hairspray and you’re done.

  4. Instead of hot rollers, you can use a wand or curling iron. Again, take sections similar to the rod size you are using, starting from the bottom, and curl everything away from your face. For beachy waves, use a larger rod or barrel size. For tighter curls, use a smaller barrel. For curls that last all day long, before letting the curls hang down, use a single prong hair clip or bobby pin to pin the curl in place. If you choose to pin your curls, get ready for your day with the pins in place. After you’re done getting ready, take out all of your clips or pins and spray with hairspray.

  5. This technique uses a wand or curling iron, is a little faster, and will give you looser curls. Simply tie your hair up into a loose, high ponytail. Take medium to large sections of hair and curl them. After all the hair in your ponytail is curled, gently take your ponytail out and touch up some curls around your face. Spray with hairspray as needed.