November is running out fast & before we know it December will be here. Yikes!
We know that in sunny South Africa December spells heat, sun, pools, beach & skimpier outfits. As much as I wanted winter to pass, I now find myself in a bit of shock. Why? Because I don’t have my summer body quite ready (yet). I had the best intentions about exercising like a maniac during winter so that I can get a fab summer body, but I’m embarrassed to say that I was a real couch potato.
But I’m a big girl, so I’ve devised a 10-point plan to get my look summer ready.
If, like me, you have been neglecting your skincare & body routine during winter, don’t stress. Here is what we are going to do from head to toe:
In case you think I’ve lost the plot, consider this study that proved that all you really need to look sexy & healthy, is a smile!
Even if you are wearing no makeup, a smiling face makes you look just as good as if you had the perfect BMI. Turns out crows feet (the fine lines around your eyes that form when smiling) makes you look more intelligent too. Read more about the awesomeness of smiling over here.
Get the cleanest smile by brushing twice a day for two minutes. A really awesome toothpaste that I”m loving at the moment is the White Glo Deep Stain Remover (R54.95 for 100ml or on special at the moment at Clicks until 24 December). This toothpaste contains charcoal which means it is black! A bit weird at first, but you will fall in love with the fact that the charcoal particles penetrate & draw our lingering colour particles. Say hello to fresh breath & gorgeous white teeth.
Also remember to use a good floss once a day like the GUM Expanding Floss, (R55 from Clicks & DisChem) which is ideal if you have small gaps between the teeth, sensitive or receding gums.
2. Summer-Ready Hair
I have probably mentioned this 10 times before: if my hair looks good, my confidence also gets a lift. To get your summer look kick-started, get your hair looking great. You will need to consider your cut, condition & colour. Decide which one of these need some TLC first. Or if your budget allows, change up all three & you’ll feel like a million dollars.
I love hair treatments & can recommend the INOAR Hair Botox or the Davines Replumping Treatment at Carlton Hair Salons countrywide.
Colour adds instant vibrancy, so consult with your hairdresser about it. I am not the hugest fan of home colour, but in times of desperation or a tight budget, I have always enjoyed Garnier’s Nutrisse colour.
A fantastic home hair treatment is Not Your Mother’s Intensive Hair Unit Renewal Treatment which is a great quality product at a really affordable price (R39.95, Dis-Chem).
Also make sure that you use a good shampoo & conditioner to protect your colour like the Revlon® ColorSilk® Shampoo & Conditioner (R65.99) formulated with Revlon ColorStay Technology™. It is available in four shades – Glowing Blonde, Brave Red, Gorgeous Brunette & Bold Black.
3. Face facts
During periods that I don’t go for regular facials, I can see the effect on my skin. I’m now getting back into the swing of my facial routine again & after the last two facials that I had, I could feel & see a genuine improvement in my skin.
I’ve tried & loved the following two facials – both done with fantastic South African skincare ranges:
The Dr. Gobac® Facial done with his range of cosmeceuticals. It’s not a girly fragranced range, so it is perfect for men too. All active ingredients are carefully selected & combined to give the maximum claimed effect in the shortest & healthiest possible time. Contact the Dr. Gobac® Skin Body Apothecary in Morningside for an appointment or ask for a salon in your area.
The Placecol group of salons also offer a range of fantastic facials. Pop in & discuss your skin concern with one of their therapists. I had a Resurfacing Treatment with them a while ago & my skin felt & looked fantastic.
Naturally, you should take care of your skin at home too, so I suggest you use a sheet mask once a week.
4. Spruce up your makeup
Remember that you need to replace your makeup at specific times, otherwise you are breeding some nasties in your makeup bag!
So, take an hour or so to clean out your makeup stash & treat yourself to some new goodies for summer.
- Liquid or gel eyeliner & mascara – replace every 3 months
- Lipstick, lip liner & oil-free foundation – every year
- Lip Gloss, cream compact foundation – every 18 months
- Cream Shadows,cream blush & concealer – 12 – 18 months
- Powders (eyeshadows, blushes & bronzers) & pencil eyeliners – every 2 years
For a luxury buy, I love the CHANEL LES BEIGES range – it creates a gorgeous natural look.
The Essence & Palladio makeup ranges have become my budget-friendly go-to makeup ranges.
5. Tackle cellulite
I recently read that cellulite is blamed & hated so much but has actually done nothing wrong to deserve all the hostility. It made me chuckle, but truth is that we all loathe cellulite.
Running is great for combatting cellulite, so go on, grab your takkies & start jogging. But in all seriousness, my best recommendation in the war against cellulite is a three-pronged approach:
* Exercise & stick to a clean diet. Be warned that dieting too hard can actually aggravate your cellulite, so take a slower more sustainable approach.
* Get rid of dead cells by doing dry brushing at home or go for a full-body wet exfoliation at a salon. “If you’re not already body brushing on a regular basis then you should be,” says dermatologist Dr Ariel Haus.“Daily body brushing, stroking in the direction towards your heart, or a strong-handed massage on the thighs will increase fat dispersion if done on a regular basis.”
* Use a quality cellulite product that you can afford. I love the Dr Barbor, Annique & Nivea products. Cellulite products will also work much better after exercise, so pop one of these in your gym bag for your post-exercise shower. Look for ingredients like caffeine, retinol & ginkgo biloba.
Something to remember: you are not likely to get rid of cellulite entirely as it is in some genes, so you could be very skinny & still have cellulite or obese with very little cellulite.
A bonus: read these cellulite treatments that celebs use.
6. Get rid of unwanted body hair
Smooth hairless underarms, legs & bikini lines will make you feel so much sexier.
Shaving is always a safe option, but if you’re looking for longer-term smoothness, book a wax. I recently tried WAXIT & I was really impressed! WAXIT has four salons around Gauteng & specialises in waxing for male & female clients. You won’t find a quicker, more professional wax around easily.
I’ve also tried out Mandy’s Hair Removal Lotion & it will definitely find its way into my shopping basket again this summer.
Make sure you shave or wax 24 hours before heading into the sun or getting a spray tan.
7. A tanned look – the safe way
If you are still on the fence about whether or not you should be booking those sessions on a sunbed, then listen up. The answer is no, no, no & no. During a recent talk that I attended by a dermatologist at Laserderm, Dr Noori Moti, she said that each & every person that she diagnoses with skin cancer has been on a sunbed in his / her life. Ouch. I spent many afternoons on the sunbed in my teenage years & 20’s.
What you need is to gradually build up your tan with a quality self-tanning product like the Caribbean Tan Range which has always been my favourite self-tan. The smell instantly transports be to a sunny island! They offer three different application methods in three different shades, plus products to use before & after your self-tan process. Just like getting a tan from the sun, you need to give your self-tanning product time & TLC to get a gorgeous sun-kissed look.
A spray tan is also a safe, quick way to get a healthy summer glow. Ensure that you do your homework & get the spray tan done by an experienced therapist so that you don’t end up with an uneven yellow look.
8. Soft, glowing skin
So you’ve been jogging, scrubbing & getting a healthy tanned Summer glow. Or not.
Anyway, next up is keeping your skin soft & moisturised. Body oils are all the rage, so use these during & after your shower.
Personally, I mostly stick with the Vaseline® Intensive Care™ Lotions & Creams.They are affordable (from R24,99 for 200ml for the lotions & creams, & R89,00 for the innovative new Vaseline® Intensive Care™ Spray Moisturisers) & have been my go-to moisturisers since I was a little girl.
9. Get your SPF game on
If you’ve been a bit naughty & skimped on your SPF this winter, then it’s time to turn the page. SPF is an absolute non-negotiable. It might feel like a schlep right now, but your 60-year-old self will thank you later.
A broad-spectrum sunscreen – with UVA & UVB protection) is what you need. Remember to reapply every few hours.
For face: I am very impressed with the Filorga UV-Bronze Face (R 485.00, 40ml). It is not greasy & uses photo-activated technology which is triggered by the sun’s rays for protection & reducing the signs of ageing.
For particularly intolerant skin, go for the PAYOT Sun Sensi Creme SPF 50 (R370, Dis-Chem).
For body: SVR Sun Secure Brume SPF 50+ (R435 for 200ml, from Clicks & selected salons) is my latest favourite. This range uses SVR’s Integral Secure Technology which targets all types of sun rays – UVA, UVB, visible light & infrared. It works for the whole family. I cannot get enough of the amazing, yet subtle fragrance. This ultra-fine mist can easily be sprayed onto wet skin too! It is sweat & rub resistant too. What’s not to love?
10. Summer Ready Feet
No matter what your age, skin tone, height or size, groomed feet & neatly painted toenails in gorgeous summer shoes will always look sexy! Period.
My advice: go for a professional pedicure to kick-start your holiday. I love getting a gel overlay on my toes, because it means having perfectly groomed toenails for up to seven weeks. Then lastly, use a good old pumice stone in the bath or shower & a great foot product will keep your soft pedicured feet silky smooth.
I hope you liked these beauty tricks. Do you have more to add? Please let me know how you kick-start your summer holiday body.
Here’s to a gorgeous summer-ready look!