We are so excited for our Third Annual Patriotic Pin-Up’s fundraiser benefiting the US Vets of Las Vegas! For three years now, Altenburg Studio, Portraits by Catherine, and Amelia C & Co have partnered up for two days of pin up fun with all proceeds going to help our Veterans. Last year was our best year ever, raising more than $8500! This two-day event always sells out FAST, so if you’re ready to be a pin-up make your appointment before they are all gone!
In these lean and mean times, a girl still has gotta look good. It’s a good think that a few awesome products and pretty tricks separate the hotties from the…uh…homely. Don’t feel like your pay cut means a trip back to the dollar store.
The general rule of thumb when it comes to purchases is that you want to invest the most in what is going to be with you the longest. A classic pair of black pumps will run you more than seasonal flip flops. Same thing with beauty. You need to be investing in what’s going to be with you the longest, and that’s your skin. Cut back whatever it takes for you to afford good skin care. Keep to the trifecta: Cleanse, Exfoliate, Moisturize. Nope, don’t bother with toner. I haven’t found any toner that was really needed. But the other three are must haves. Not saying you have to run out and drop a few hundred on Chanel. There are amazing lines available that work even better than department store brands, you just need to do a little research. When you do find the best for your skin, buy it and do without your weekly lip gloss purchase if that’s what it takes.
Lose the tanning bed membership. Cancer, anyone? Or if your lucky, you’ll just age prematurely from UV Damage. Nothing a several thousand-dollar trip to the dermatologist can’t fix.
Continue to get the eyebrows done. Now that we have all those awesome little threading joints popping up, you can spring the 15 bucks to get cleaned up every few weeks. It’s just good housekeeping, and totally worth the money.
No more highlights. It’s summer, so you can let them grow out sufer-girl style. If you’ve been darkening your hair all over either from gray’s or just preference, find out how you can stretch out the space between appointments. If you’ve been with your stylist for a while, you can probably level with her.
Don’t cheap out on the foundation. If your a girl who wears foundation every day, your going to look silly if the cheap foundation you got doesn’t quite match your skin tone. If you can’t afford the right color and formula for your skin type, just skip it. But, if you need to have it, continue to get the correct color with the best forumla.
Resist the urge to pick up a new gloss at the register. Those sneaky little devils in their pretty display right at check out, those pretty color’s glistening under the store light… no. You must remain strong. That $4 purchase 3 times a month will pay for those brows to get fixed, and trust me when I say no one is going to be looking at your lips if your eyebrows look like Robin Hood and his Merry Men are going to come running out any second.
It’s not going to be easy. Being on a budget never is. But, with a little self discipline and a firm grasp of what’s important, you’ll literally save face till we pull out of this. Then, if you go back to your wicked ways… well, that’s OK.
Stress and Weight Gain: The Big Fat Truth
The magazine racks are nearly bowing under the weight of all those glossies with screaming taglines about sex, makeup, and weight. And all of them have valid points- weight gain, especially in women, is a source of both inner and outer controversy. There’s this massive sign on the side of this super gym I drive past almost every day promoting free enrollment for women. We get it, society! You can launch all the “real women” campaigns you want but when you market your gyms and shape wear and fit models and motivational boosters, it’s hard to drown out the noise and desperation to be thin. And until recently I saw all this grand marketing as just more propaganda mixed in with everything else shoved in my face daily. But when I suddenly ballooned out last week after weeks of dieting, daily workouts, and general good health I was reduced to tears and became very hyper aware of all the “think thin thoughts” around me.
Diet and exersize has been a part of my life pretty consistenly for the past five years or so. Not because I felt over weight or had body issues, but because I liked looking better in my clothes and I liked the light, springing feeling being fit gave me. No crazy diets or work outs, either. Mostly daily cardio and plenty of clean eating. I wasn’t stick thin, but I felt balanced and never felt totally denied. I wanted to keep that comfort level, so in Janurary when I quit smoking, I immediately went on a diet as well. No reason to bloom out just because I stopped asphyxiating myself. All was well, and I’m super proud to say that as of today I am still smoke free!!! Except…
I started on the patches with lasted several weeks, and then when I finished the cycle used lozenges as needed. A few days of lozenges just to ease myself into being smoke free and just like that, I am taking my first shaky steps on the tight rope that is living life nicotine free. My proud high lasted for a brief, shining moment before plunging down into the utter depths of the depression as my dopamine levels became almost non-existent. Allow me to explain: When one smokes for a significant amount of time, the body stops producing dopamine on its own and becomes dependant on the nicotine to kickstart dopamine release. When one quits smoking, it takes a while for the body to start doing it’s job again. It’s that period between that’s the hardest. Doctors try to counteract this by prescribing various anti-anxiety and anti-depression meds, but that’s just trading one substance for another. Eventually, if you truly want to be chemical free, you gotta get through the dopamine dip and let your body start doing it’s thing again.
So here I am, sitting around way stressed out. My anxiety level is through the roof, and suddenly everything seems cataclysmic and urgent. I know I just gotta grit my teeth and get through it, so that’s the plan. In the meantime, I am not as stringent on my diet as I was at the beginning. The intense and unforgiving 4HB diet designed by my fav author, Tim Ferriss is effective only as a lifestyle. And I just couldn’t hack it and be stressed out with low dopamine at the same time. So I modified the diet slightly so it wasn’t so intense, but still pretty good.
And then… last week… my waistline ballooned out as if I just had my way with a fair-ground full of fried oreos. Because, you know, when you’re stressed out the thing you want the MOST is to suddenly gain weight. I stared in the mirror naked and just cried.
It couldn’t possibly be the change in diet. Granted, I wasn’t eating super clean, but small and rare cheating may be cause for no weight loss or slight weight gain, but certainly not such a rapid weight gain.
My BFF Google had my back and it didn’t take long to figure out the culprit in the case of Sudden Weight Gain: A sneaky little bastard named Cortisol.
I’m no dietician or scientist, so rather than try to summarize it for you here’s some link hookup:
A quick spree under the term “cortisol weight gain” will give you even more info.
So I guess at the end of the day, there’s more to stress management than the superior feeling of being calm in a crisis. If you get stressed out, you’re probably going to put on weight. If you put on weight, you’ll probably get stressed out.
Take two chill pills and call me in the morning.