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Monthly Archives: February 2017

Tips to Find Right Blush for You?

We like to think of blush as pretty foolproof. There’s no detail work to master, no lines to stay inside of, and it looks great on everyone. But we also think that there’s a little more to applying blush than just dusting it on. Carefully placed blush can manipulate the appearance of your face shape in sneaky ways, and without much effort (we’re not talking about those trendy seven layer step systems). Play around with the looks below to find what application meets your own beauty needs. The results may surprise you!

Center Blush

For those who wish to soften their bone structure or have a square-shaped jawline, this can be a game changer. Apply rounded bursts of blush to center of the cheek– right on the apple. It will have a rounding effect on your entire face. What’s more, center blush can have a widening effect on the eyes. Done correctly, you’ll look like a doll.

Lower Blush

If your face features a long or prominent chin, you can even things out by placing your blush just below the apples of your cheeks– over the bone. This creates the subtle illusion that the apples of your cheeks rest a bit lower, and will elongate the upper part of the face to keep you looking balanced.

Upper Blush

Popular in Japan, blushing underneath the eyes can create an either sickly, or youthful appearance that might be seen as an extreme for some. However, applying your blush up high can make a short face appear extra long. For those with small or round faces, it’s worth a try– keeping the blush just above the apples is a happy medium to blending it into your eye makeup.

Outer Blush

Contour blush (shading around the cheekbones and temples) can draw focus to the center of the face– a plus if your face is on the wider side. Do too much and you’ll look like a Ziggy Stardust revivalist (no complaints here!), but do a little and you’ll find it to be a subtle way to add structure without joining the contour club.

Full cheeks

It’s not for everybody, but BIG BLUSH can work magic on those with large or long faces. Coloring outside the typical blush lines can shorten the face significantly and even shape it, depending on whether you apply rounded pats or sweeping strokes. Try it with a subtle shade and skip the heavy eye and lip looks. That will keep your cheeks the major statement.

Tips to Getting The Right Eye Shadow

When it comes to choosing which eye shadow to buy, I am huge advocate of one simple truth: get the shade that makes you feel amazing. But to feel amazing, you need to feel confident. And when it comes to makeup, nothing gives you more confidence than a good understanding of color theory and how it applies to your natural eye color, hair color, and skin tone.

So, let’s give you some color theory basics so you can purchase with power. Below are some factors to consider when buying an eye shadow — whether you want an everyday look or instant drama.

Skin Tone  

Today, skin tones tend to be categorized into two columns, warm and cool. It doesn’t help that some makeup brands will categorize pink tones as warm and yellow tones as cool while others will do just the opposite, because the color wheel is divided down the center and yellow can be considered cool or warm.

But if you are aware of your undertone, you can navigate through all this product with decisiveness. To find out your undertone, check your veins. Our veins are naturally blue, so a yellow skin tone will have veins that appear more green. A pink skin tone’s veins will appear more violet.

If you have a warm skin tone, any warm eye shadow color will look more natural; if you are cool toned, any cool color will look more natural. Selecting shades further to the opposite sides of the color wheel will give you more drama.

Warm skin tones should try colors like bronze, vanilla, ivory, taupe, light and dark brown, pink, and coral. If you have a cool skin tone, play with pale blue, lilac, teal, gray and turquoise.

Eye Color

Using your own eye color to choose your shadow palette is a perfect way to put the focus exactly where you want it. Using an eye shadow shade that is complimentary to your eye color (one that is opposite on the color wheel) is an easy way to draw attention and make the eye pop or look more prominent. Choosing a shadow that lies close to your eye color (we call this analogous) will give a soft and easy effect that looks beautiful. Here is a simple breakdown.

Blue eyes – We know that orange is opposite blue, so anything in that color family or on either side of orange will create a lovely, dramatic effect. Try shades and tints of orange, red and yellow to get a ‘wow.’ Think copper, gold, peach, coral, pinks, and warm browns. For a more subtle look, something that is next to blue on the color wheel like violets, purples, or greens can create an unexpectedly natural look. Lilac, lavender, deep purple, plum, khaki, and olive are all excellent choices.

Green eyes – Eye shadow with red undertones like burgundy, maroon, and pink, or close colors like violet, lavender, peach, plum, and red are ideal complements to the green of the eyes. Warm metallics like red-based copper and bronze tend to bring out not only the green, but often accentuate the beautiful grey and brown flecks that green-eyed people tend to have.

Brown Hazel eyes – Brown is not boring. In fact, brown-eyed people are able to experiment with the widest variety of colors. Brown-eyed makeup wearers are lucky to have their pick of the lot — from warm, rich amber, copper, and gold tones to cool, slate-grey, charcoal, and lavender hues.

Remember that the three primary shades (red, yellow and blue) combine to make brown, so essentially the world is your oyster. Decide what effect you want to achieve and be creative.

Hair Color

Black/ Brown – Brunettes have more fun when it comes to choosing makeup as many eye shadow colors suit them well. Deep, dark colors like black, browns, and purples are perfect. And for a more natural look, neutrals like gold, beige, cream as well as lighter, softer shades of green, red and yellow all work well with dark hair.

Blonde – Blondes traditionally tend to have a fairer skin tone, meaning a softer palette will be more flattering. Color tints work well for fair skin, so try tints of your favorite reds (pink), oranges (peach) and violets (lilac) for a look that is sure to work.

Red – For a long time, red heads were limited in their options because of fashion norms, but these days, anything goes. Neutral shades will give a more natural look, but strong and bold greens are gorgeous for drama. Let your personality be your guide here and make your own rules.

Bold Color – In this “anything goes” age for hair color, people are wearing bright shades and mermaid-inspired looks. An easy tip to choosing eye shadow: complementary shades are for drama and similar colors are for a softer look.

Still feel a little nervous? If you are a beginner, you may want to buy a color wheel from your favorite art supply store — a great way to feel more secure with color theory.

Finally, one overall rule: matching your eye shadow with the color of your eyes will look dull and diminish the impact of both colors. This does not mean that blue-eyed people should not try blue shadow, or that brown-eyed individuals shouldn’t brush on a rust color. It just requires blending in complimentary colors to make the appearance more captivating.

Matching your shadow choice to your outfit can look a little outdated as well, but, then again, there are no strict rules to follow with today’s makeup ethos of individuality. Don’t be afraid to experiment! The nice thing about makeup is you can just wash it right off.

Minimize Those Lip Lines

For some women, especially smokers and sun worshippers, lip lines can become a bother and a reason they desire plastic surgery. Years of cigarettes and UV exposure can cause dozens of fine lines to collect around the lips.

“The best treatment for lip lines is prevention; protect the skin from sun and avoid tobacco products,” advises Clinton Humphrey, MD, a facial plastic surgery fellow at the University of Illinois at Chicago. “Once lip lines are present, hyaluronic acid fillers may provide a small amount of improvement. Substantial improvement can be gained from dermabrasion, which is more effective for the upper lip than the lower lip.”

Treatment options depend in part on how many lines you have, says Michael Olding, MD, chief of plastic surgery at George Washington University Hospital in Washington, D.C. Many fine lines would require dermabrasion, whereas a few deep lines could be addressed with a filler, he says, adding that the choice comes down to filling the lines or flattening

Plastic Surgery: Minimizing Lip Lines

Options for minimizing lip lines include fillers (also known as soft tissue augmentation), dermabrasion, and laser skin resurfacing.

  • Fillers for lip lines. Hyaluronic acid is a naturally occurring substance that can be injected into the skin to improve the look of fine lines. Hyaluronic acid adds volume between skin fibers that have lost it over time. Your doctor may offer several other filler options — your own fat, for example. Swelling from a pharmaceutical filler decreases over a few days; fat injections may take one to two weeks. Results from both are temporary and may diminish over time.
  • Dermabrasion for lip lines.Dermabrasion is a cosmetic procedure in which a dermatologist scrapes away the surface of skin, evening out the look of fine lines. A chemical peel achieves a similar effect with the use of a caustic chemical that burns away the top layers of skin, revealing the smoother surface underneath. These procedures may require downtime of up to two weeks depending on the intensity of the treatment.
  • Laser skin resurfacing for lip lines. Laser skin resurfacing uses a targeted beam of light (a skin laser) to even out the skin’s surface. For laser resurfacing and dermabrasion, you may have flaking for five to 10 days and notice results in 10 to 14 days; the skin may remain pink or flushed for one to six months.

Plastic Surgery for Lip Lines: What Procedure Is Right for You?

You and your plastic surgeon will discuss the options. Your skin type, desired result, and the amount of downtime you can manage will affect your choice.

Budget is also a concern, since most cosmetic surgeries are not covered by health insurance plans. According to the American Society of Plastic Surgery, average plastic surgeon fees for these procedures in 2007 were:

  • Chemical peel: $744
  • Laser skin resurfacing: $2,222
  • Dermabrasion: $283
  • Hyaluronic acid filler: $598

You will also have to budget for costs such as medication, ointments, staff, and facility use. Discuss with your plastic surgeon whether you will need to repeat the treatment in months or years.

Plastic Surgery: Not All Fillers Are Equal

The majority of facial fillers have an excellent safety profile, but some fillers may have unintended side effects. According to a study of 25 women who received polyalkylimide implant injections (implants which are essentially gel and water), researchers found that in the year after the procedure, some women experienced swelling, hardening, or pain at the injection site, and they also experienced body-wide reactions such as fevers and arthritis.

Remember, all cosmetic surgery has possible side effects. Find out about the side effects before deciding, but once you do, you can make a safe choice.

Behind the Botox Alert

Many of my patients were concerned and called my office when they heard news reports that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) said it was reviewing the safety of Botox, Botox Cosmetic, and Myobloc. Because Botox has become such a popular cosmetic treatment, often used to soften wrinkles in the face and forehead, I’d like to explain the basis for this investigation and how it might or might not affect you.

The FDA is reviewing cases of individuals treated with Botox between 1996 and 2007 who developed adverse reactions. While the inquiry relates primarily to children withcerebral palsy who were given Botox to relax severe muscle spasms in their legs, the FDA is considering all reports of harmful side effects. Although the use of botulinum toxin for cerebral palsy is not approved in the United States, doctors have prescribed this treatment as a successful alternative to painful surgery. This is therefore known as an “off label” use of Botox, which means that it’s used to treat a condition outside of the FDA-approved labeling for the drug. The FDA does permit physicians to use an approved medication off label, but urges doctors to be well informed about the drug, to use it based on firm scientific evidence, and to maintain records on the medication’s use and effects. Since the muscles in the legs are so much larger than the facial muscles that cause frown lines in your forehead and crow’s-feet around your eyes, it takes 20 to 100 times the amount of Botox used in a typical wrinkle treatment to treat leg spasms. It is possible for some of the Botox to seep out beyond the intended muscle group and cause a potentially life-threatening reaction, such as the weakening of respiratory and digestive muscles, which could lead to difficulty breathing and/or swallowing. Several children with cerebral palsy who were treated with Botox required feeding tubes and/or intubation to help them breathe.

While there are no new reports of adverse reactions related to the cosmetic use of Botox, there are possible side effects that can range in severity from dizziness to chest pain. But it’s important to know that there has never been a reported death attributed to Botox Cosmetic. As a dermatologist, I use Botox Cosmetic to treat patients who want to smooth out their facial wrinkles and frown lines, as well as to treat excessive perspiration. If used correctly, and in the appropriate doses, it’s very safe and effective. I have personally used Botox Cosmetic and have treated patients with it since 1996, so I hope this will reassure those of you who have used Botox for cosmetic reasons.

Nevertheless, this recent FDA alert is a reminder that Botox is still a medical procedure and should be performed by an experienced, board-certified dermatologist or plastic surgeon in a medical setting. While you may be tempted to get a “deal” at a spa or salon that offers discount Botox, the person doing your injection in this type of setting may not have much experience (you might be the first client!). As with any elective procedure, be sure to find out who will be doing your injections and how long the person has been using Botox. A good place to start is to ask your family physician or internist to recommend an experienced physician who can make sure this treatment is the right one for you.