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We often only head to the doctor when something is wrong. Try setting up an appointment with a dermatologist to assess your skin and the care you should be giving it. Also make sure you’re keeping up with your dentist check-ups and yearly screenings (mammograms, PAP smears, etc.).
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There are over 1,000 cosmetic ingredients banned by the EU that are still used in many American cosmetic products. Research your favorite brands to see how they measure up to safety standards, and what ingredients they use.
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Online commerce has made it much easier for smaller merchants to distribute their products across the country (and the globe). In addition to shopping local, try buying from small (and black-owned) businesses online- helping up and coming artisans while also expanding your consumer horizons.
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Replace your toothbrush every three months to avoid lingering bacteria. Clean your makeup brushes weekly to avoid spreading bacteria across your face. Invest in some quality hair styling tools (like your straightener) to avoid putting tarnished metal on your hair.
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While we often focus on pretty manis and pedis, make sure you’re showing your cuticles some love, too. Cuticles serve as the barrier that prevents germs and bacteria from getting into your nail beds. Besides pushing them back or clipping them, make sure you’re giving them a massage with tea tree or coconut oil to keep them moisturized and healthy.
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Melanin needs protection too, and it’s important to incorporate a daily SPF (minimum of 30) into your beauty routine. Aside from having protection from the sun, you’ll also be preventing premature wrinkling and sunspots.
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Unless you’re a makeup artist, it's likely that you can make your products last a while. Even though that’s great for your wallet, it’s important to make sure you’re not keeping makeup beyond the expiration date/shelf life, as you risk infection and even illness from using expired/old makeup. Rule of thumb: mascara lasts around 3-6 months, liquid makeup lasts around a year, and powder can last 18 months to two years. Products with natural ingredients have an even lower shelf life of just 1-2 months.
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Facial masks are a great way to remove toxins, excess oils and dead skin cells from your face. Play around with the difference ingredients (from charcoal to avocado), and textures (clay masks to scrubs) for flawless and clear skin.
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In terms of oral health, make sure that in addition to brushing, flossing and rinsing that you’re also cleaning your tongue. Bacteria can creep and seep into your tongue, and a scraper is the safe way to make sure you’re removing those hidden organisms.
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Opt for a spa day every couple of months to relax and and get a deep tissue massage. These messages not only feel great and relieve stress, but also help stimulate blood flow and relax tense muscles.
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Be it to your makeup palettes or your hair, spice up your look with pops of color every now and again. While red is an obvious choice, get even more ambitious with hues of blue, green, white, and yellow. It’ll make you stand out from the crowd, and you may just find a new signature color.
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Beauty starts on the inside and radiates outward. Get your daily dose of beauty boosting vitamins like biotin (for hair, skin, and nails), Vitamin E (an antioxidant) and Vitamin C (which is great for you immune system AND for boosting collagen).
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If you’re one who is apprehensive about stepping outside of your beauty comfort zone, try subscribing to a monthly or quarterly beauty box. That way, you’ll be exposed to new products on a steady basis and be more apt to give new things a try.
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Aside from getting pretty pedis, make sure you're exfoliating dead skin from your feet and doing foot soaks. Your feet are vital to your health, so make sure you show them a little TLC beyond nail polish.
15 of 15 Photographer: Anna i Jacek Bieniek
Often cheaper (and safer), take some time to make your own beauty products. Whether you make your own face masks or take a stab at making glycerin soap, give DIY beauty products a try.
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