Archive for December, 2009


December 4th, 2009

skin careMyth 1: The more times in a day you use an acne cleanser, the more effectiveness it is.

False: If the product you use contains active ingredients such as retinol, AHAs, salicylic acid, benzoyl peroxide or vitamin C, then it’s best to follow the less-is-more principle. Applied in excess, these potent ingredients can irritate your skin instead of treat it.

Myth 2: Layering SPF equals higher levels of sun protection.

False: Wearing an SPF 50 on top of a SPF 10 won’t give you a total of SPF60 – you will be only be protected up to highest SPF you’ve layered on, so don’t be fooled.

Myth 3: If you haven’t opened it yet, it’s still safe to use skincare from 2007.

False: In general, preservatives stay stable for one year. After this, the product becomes susceptible to bacteria. Also, active ingredients do breakdown over time and become ineffective. Therefore, it’s best to stick to the use-by date to avoid causing harm to skin.

When You’re Embarrassed

December 4th, 2009
How to handle uncomfortable situations with style.

How to handle uncomfortable situations with style.

Call a spade a spade. If the person who is embarrassing you is a competitive co-worker (and not ┬álover or friend who can be reasoned with later, in private) simply call the person on it – and put a stop on the game on spot. Say, “Would you mind telling me what was that all about?” Or, “You seem bothered. Is there something you’re unhappy with that I should be aware of?”

Refuse to play the game. When Melissa agreed to meet a client at his hotel room, the man greeted her at the door, wearing only a towel, and gestured her to come in and be seated on his unmade bed. “The whole situation reeked of a power play,” Melissa recalls. “I could just smell an embarrassing scene brewing. Even if no-one saw us, he’d have a juicy story to tell his cronies later.” Refusing to play his game, Melissa said, “I expected you to be ready for our meeting on time. I’ll come back in 20 minutes when you’re dressed.” When she returned, the man was fully clothed – and apologetic.

Think upper-class. Years ago, Cristina Ford (then married to Henry II) was at a White House dinner party when her strapless gown suddenly slipped down, baring her breasts. Unfazed, Cristina simply hiked up her dress and kept chatting as if nothing has happened. How could she remain so poised? It can only be explained in two words: social security. Richard Gross, a clinical psychologist explains: “The upper-classes are among the unembarrassables of the world. If your status is so high it can’t change and nobody can take it from you, you don’t get embarrassed.” So when someone tries to put you on the spot, imagine for a split second you’re Oprah Winfrey or The Sultan of Brunei; it may help.

Laugh it off. Often the best way out of an awkward dilemma is a quick wit and a good sense of humour. Gross, who has collected thousands of embarrassments stories, tells of Liz Carpenter (a White House staffer during the Johnson administration), who had written a book and was basking in the compliments of her peers when historian Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr., (who’s been President Kennedy’s aide) walked up and said, “I like your book, Liz. Who wrote it for you?”Unembarrassed and not missing a beat, she replied, “I’m glad you like it, Arthur. who can read it to you?” Showing “grace under pressure” (which was Ernest Hemingway’s definition of guts) often truly is the best revenge.

What’s for breakfast?

December 3rd, 2009

When you eat healthy breakfast, you’re most likely to:

  • Take in more vitamins and minerals, and less fat and cholesterol
  • Have better concentration and productivity throughout the morning
  • Manage your weight better
  • Regulate your metabolism
  • Have lower cholesterol, which helps reduce your risk of heart disease

Breakfast must-haves

Whole grain anything for long-lasting energy.

Whole grain anything for long-lasting energy.

Whole-grain breads and bran muffins, or cold low-fat whole grain cereals mixed with fresh fruit such as bananas or strawberries are always good choices.

Fresh fruits and vegetables.Gulp down a glass of fresh fruit or vegetables juice, or have a 100 percent juice beverage without added sugar. Alternatively make smoothie. Blend fruits, ice cubes and yogurt, and drink it in the car.

Fresh fruits and vegetables.

Power up with protein. Tuna, salmon, lean slices of meat or chicken and a veggie omelette are all rich in protein.

Low-fat dairy

Low-fat dairy

A tall glass of skim milk with your cereals, a cup of low-fat fruit yogurt, and low-fat cheese such as cottage and natural cheese, are ideal options to incorporate into your mornings.