Saturday, July 21, 2012

Madame M Dishes Beauty: The Basics

Okay girls, we all know that men think our beauty obsession is somehow related to them. But we know better, don't we? Our clothes, our make-up, our hair, and even our prettiest lingerie is actually about how we feel about ourselves. (Not that they don't get to benefit!) Your friend is much more likely to notice that you got highlights or that your skin is glowing than a man. Especially a man that sees you every day. Married guys know they are expected to compliment you if it's obvious you've put in some effort and single men know it's in their best interest to make you feel confident and sexy. But when a girlfriend sees you and exclaims "Ohmigosh! What have you been doing? You look amazing!" then we think we really must be having a pretty good day.

Hooray for pretty and good ! And I'll take natural, if I can get it. So what's in 99% Housewife's bag of beauty tricks?

First things first. You cannot dress up your unhealthy ways with anything that comes in a jar. The first step to glowing skin is to stop doing things that damage it like smoking, not getting enough sleep, and not exercising. All of those things are free to do but we often don't do them and then head off to the cosmetic counter looking for a remedy.

We'll get to what to put on your face and body another time, but let's talk just plain healthy, first:
  • Exercise every day. Okay 5 days is good enough for most people, but I'm trying to stay ahead of my wretched gene pool. Cardio for at least 20 minutes. Weight training, yoga, and dance and walking are the things I do, but find what's fun for you. Remember not to work the same muscle group on successive days. The repairing days are what build muscle.
  • Drink water. Lots. Add lemon or cucumber as a reminder that you are being attentive to yourself. 
  • Wear sunscreen every day. EVERY DAY! 
  • Get outside. You need 20 minutes of sun exposure to keep your vitamin D levels up. You may also need a vitamin D supplement while the winter weather is dreary. Being outdoors is good for your mind and spirit. It's all related and that's important to remember.
  • Get plenty of sleep. 
  • Eat a healthy diet. 
It's a popular saying that nothing taste as good as skinny feels. But that's wrong. Think of all the skinny, yet unhealthy teen age girls you see. Skinny is not the goal. Thin is not the goal. HEALTHY is the goal. STRONG is the goal.

A theme among some of my friends right now is reinventing yourself. Your body doesn't care what the calendar says. Mid July is just as good a time as January 1st to start over.

Love and kisses. Now put on some sunscreen and get outside!

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