May: Beach-Ready Beauty
May: Beach-Ready Beauty
Slather on the Block
The number one way to prevent wrinkles and other signs of aging is with sunblock. Innovative ingredients, like the helioplex in this Neutrogena cream, offer the best protection. SPF 30 is a great starting point, and it goes up from there, but is an SPF 85 necessary? "More is better, so I think it's a good idea," says Miami-based cosmetic dermatologist Dr. Kenneth Beer. "The difference between SPF 60 and 85 is not that much on a percentage basis, but if the products are the same price, why not use the higher one?"
BUY ONLINE NOW Neutrogena Ultra-Sheer Sunblock SPF 85, $11; at drugstore.com.
Diminish the Appearance of Cellulite
If cellulite has settled at the back of your thighs, the best remedy is exercise, but celebrities including Victoria Beckham, Uma Thurman, and Kylie Minogue have all had anti-cellulite treatments using these two products. "The four percent oxygen concentration in the Silhouette slimming cream creates pressure on the fats, which break them up, thus facilitating their evacuation," says Karin Herzog, the creative mind behind the products. The Tonus B12 "also has a draining effect." For longer-term effects, Dr. Kenneth Beer says that lasers "hold real promise," so stay tuned.
BUY ONLINE NOW Silhouette and Tonus B12, Karin Herzog, $38-40; at karinherzogus.com.
Pick a Pretty Polish
When the weather heats up, your nails should tone down. "They should be more natural, not too long, and should look clean and fresh," says manicurist Mara Taskin of N.Y.C.'s Rita Hazan Salon, who recommends corals, lilacs and light pink shades. "Ask your nail technician to help you pick the perfect shade for your skin tone." Taskin's new fave for the summer is a subtle, but slightly punchy, pink from O.P.I. called ElePhantastic Pink.
BUY ONLINE NOW ElePhantastic Pink, O.P.I. $8.50; at beautysak.com.
Minimize Varicose Veins
Not ready for summer because of varicose veins? There are a few options, depending on the severity, but in any case, you should consult a doctor to treat them, says Dr. David Bank. Genetics, estrogen, being overweight and jobs or hobbies that have you on your feet all day all contribute to varicose veins, Dr. Bank says: "Whenever possible during the day or at home, get your legs elevated. Gravity will help pull extra blood upward rather than downward." Options to treat veins range from silicone injections to laser treatment to home remedies, like Dr. Hauschka's all-natural Borage pellets (taken orally), which are said to strengthen weakened veins, thereby diminishing their appearance.
BUY ONLINE NOW Borage Varicose Vein Relief, Dr. Hauschka, $14; at dr.hauschka.com.
Treat Ingrown Hairs
Just bought a cute bikini and want to show it off rather than unsightly ingrown hairs? Sandra Mendez, owner of White Tea Spa in New York, recommends lasering the hair at the bikini line for the best long-term effect. But, that can be expensive, so those on a budget should use a light scrub on the bikini area. "Exfoliation may help clear away any dry skin that blocks the hair from pushing up," Mendez says. And apply something like Solution2, which combines liquid aspirin and organic spearmint, and if applied before shaving the bikini line can prevent ingrowns and help give a smoother shave.
BUY ONLINE NOW Solution2, Min New York, $20; at minnewyork.com.
Shed Your Skin
Before self-tanning, it's important to slough off any dead skin cells. It's fine to exfoliate daily, "just be sure to moisturize," says Sandra Mendez. Mendez also recommends exfoliating at the end of your shower. "The dead skin comes off easier-it's equal to the estehetician giving you a steam and cleanse prior to getting a facial," she says. Her favorite tool for the job? "A good old-fashioned loofah sponge and regular cleanser."
BUY ONLINE NOW Bath Lily, The Body Shop, $5.50; at thebodyshop.com.
Perfect Self Tanning
Self tanner has come a long way: the smell has improved; the formulas dry more quickly and they are much less streaky that the tanners of yesterday. Makeup artist Scott Barnes, who counts Jennifer Lopez and Lucy Liu as clients, offers the following tips for a perfect fake tan:"Don?t use shaving cream; it strips the tan. Instead, shave with an oil and a razor that has a lubricating strip."
"Apply under-eye cream so face tanner doesn?t stick there."
"Rub ointment on your cuticles and nails to prevent discoloration on your fingers."
And try these products for a nice, natural-looking color.
BUY ONLINE NOW Self Tanning Instant Gel, Clarins, $30; at clarins.com; Bronze for Body, Dior, $31; at sephora.com; Instant Glow Self Tan Gel, Rodial, $59; at dermstore.com; Sublime Bronze Quick Dry, L'Oreal, $9.50; at walgreens.com; Soleil Identite, Chanel, $45; at chanel.com.
Practice Safe Sun Daily
Even if you aren't laying out in the sun, it's important to apply sunblock every day. Dr. David Bank, founder and director of the Center for Dermatology, Cosmetic and Laser Surgery, warns that you can still get sun through a window near your desk or while in the car, making a product like La Roche Posay's Anthelios a daily must. Also remember to apply cream to your hands, which can be particularly susceptible to the sun's rays while driving.
BUY ONLINE NOW Anthelios SPF 15, La Roche Posay, $29; at anthelios.com.
Wear Your SPF
More and more companies are coming out with an easy way to put on SPF. Clothing that blocks the rays has to be the easiest (especially for children). "It is one of the best ways to protect your skin," says Dr. Kenneth Beer. "It is simple to use, blocks UVA and UVB (and UVC) and works like a charm."
BUY ONLINE NOW Kelly shirt in hot pink, UV Skinz, $35; at uvskinz.com.
Try an Airbrush Tan
- Esthetician Natalie Cupid, of New York's Sundara salon, recommends the following tips to prepare for an airbrush tan: Shower and exfoliate with a sugar scrub the night before the session and shave if necessary. The day of your tan, do not apply moisturizer, sunscreen, lotion, deodorant, perfume or any other product-skin needs to be clean to ensure proper absorption of the mist solution. Wear dark, loose fitting clothing. And plan to avoid water or exercise for at least eight hours after your treatment.
- This will help you get the most from your tan, which should last about five days.
- BUY ONLINE NOW Almond Coconut Milk Scrub, Laura Mercier, $46; at lauramercier.com.
Ease a Burn
We all try to avoid a lobster-red burn, but sometimes it happens. And in that case, you should be prepared to treat it. Products such as Sonya Dakar's Irritation Relief ($49) can help calm and repair the skin, says Sara Thatcher, spa director at The Regent Palms in Turks and Caicos. She also offers this at-home remedy that comes straight from the cupboard: "Take a piece of gauze, soak it in white vinegar and let it cool in the fridge for 15 minutes and apply to the affected areas."
WHERE TO BUY White vinegar, Heinz, $2; at grocery stores nationwide.