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On Solid Ground

To gel or not to gel, that is the question…

To gel or not to gel, that is the question!

Gel varnish is possibly the best invention since long lasting makeup. They come on in a jiffy. They are virtually indestructible. And best part is you can count on it to last and last. Based on the above evidence then, is there anything not to love about gel varnish? As with all good, there are some pitfalls we should be aware off. So before you schedule the next gel appointment, know exactly what you’re signing up for.

1.​ ​The thick coat of polish blocks oxygen from getting to the nail beds and cuticle causing nails to weaken.

2.​ ​Scraping and buffing the nail plate in preparation for gel varnish thins out the nail bed. It is vital to hydrate hands and cuticles with a thick cream after a gel session.

3.​ ​As the gel varnish weakens over the cause of time, it may lift off the nail bed, making it a good place to harbour bacteria, leading to fungus.

4.​ ​The UV light radiation from gel manicure has been linked to cancer though some experts say the risk is slim. One thing for sure, is the strength of the lamps is not regulated so the risk varies from salon to salon. LED options are now available to reduce cancer risk.

5.​ ​The UV light has also been linked to causing premature ageing on hands, causing dark spots to appear on the back of hands. Slather on thick lotion to lessen the ill effects.

6.​ ​During removal, soaking hands in acetone foil wraps causes hands to become dehydrated and there is also a chance for acetone to enter into the bloodstream. Remember to rinse off every trace of acetone after each session.

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Beauty

How to sun proof your mien

We already know that the sun is the biggest culprit for

We already know that the sun is the biggest culprit for premature ageing so what can we do about it? Dermatologists will have you know that wearing sunscreen is the single most effective way against sun protection, not to mention that it is the basis of proper skin care.

Often you’ll find sun protection formulas differentiated by SPF denominations. SPF essentially stands for ‘sun protection factor’, a measure of how well the sunscreen protects the skin. A minimum of 30 SPF is recommended by dermatologist.

However, if you’re swimming or perspiring, it is advisable to reapply as often as every two hours to optimize sun protection. A broad-spectrum formula that helps block out UVB and UVA rays which are the primary causes for sunburns, wrinkling and ageing.

Using the right amount of sunscreen is vital. A rule of thumb would be that you need approximately a dollop the size of a quarter to cover the face. Don’t step out right away after applying sunscreen, give it at least 20 minutes to get absorbed into the skin. Wear makeup over sunscreen as the finishing touch.

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Beauty

A modern take on an age-old nail favourite

French Twist

French Twist
A modern take on an age-old nail favourite

Updated and thoroughly modern, the classic nude-and-white French isn’t exactly making a comeback, rather it’s being reimagined and the possibilities are endless.

French manicures of now are an art on its own thanks to colours, metallic, graphic sharps and negative space. They are anything but basic. French tips work best on nail’s natural oval or round shapes but that’s not to say square tips cannot benefit all the same. Simply move the tip to the side for a funky asymmetrical slant.

Take border nail art all the way lining the entire nail from the tip to sides to wrap around the nail bed for a bold take on graphics. Play up on colour contrast to push the style envelope further.

NEW YORK, NY – SEPTEMBER 07: A model backstage at Michelle Helene Presentation September 2016 during New York Fashion Week at Pier 59 Studios on September 7, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Victor VIRGILE/Gamma-Rapho via Getty Images)

For a more painterly approach, use a nail art brush to create lines from the French coloured tip. Set the lines with a dry brush to blend the lines with the tip. Allow design to dry for five minutes before applying a top coat.

The cornerstone of nail art, French manicure has always been, and will continue to inspire nail art.

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Beauty

Frame It Up

Over plucked your brows? Fret not, help is

Over plucked your brows? Fret not, help is at hand. Fix them in 4 simple steps.

1.​ ​Let It Grow
Give it three to four weeks for eyebrows to grow back though some may take even longer. Resist from tweezing even if you spot strays. Apply clear gel over brows to help them look groomed even when they are not on their best behaviour.

2.​ ​On Speed
Rub on growth serum just before bed to hasten regrowth. Ayurveda insists that applying castor oil speeds up hair growth.

3.​ ​Shape Up
A balanced brow that perfectly frames the face is just what the beauty doctor ordered. Angular faces will benefit from a round, soft brow to play down its chiseled jawline while a long face with look considerably shorted with a straight brow. Rule of thumb to operate off – the brow should peak where the brow bone protrudes the most. Follow your bone structure for a natural arch.

4.​ ​Improvise
For brows to look fuller, use a pencil or a gel to intensify the natural arch of the brow. Choose a colour that is two shades lighter than your eyebrow hair.

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