Beauty Beat: 12 Best-Kept Beauty Secrets

These tried-and-true tips will surprise you.
ESSENCE.COM Jun, 05, 2012

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When it comes to using a scrub and face cleanser, always use the scrub first. Gentle exfoliating will lift dead skin cells from the skin, which will then need to be washed away with your face wash.

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For high-impact lashes, warm your eyelash curler on low heat with your blow-dryer prior to use. Blow air on the curler for no more than five seconds and be sure to test the curler to make sure it’s not too hot. You don’t want to burn your eyelid.

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To avoid bubbles in your nail polish, roll the bottle backwards and forwards between the palms of your hands instead of shaking it.

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If you towel dry your hair, avoid rubbing hair with the towel which will aggravate hair cuticles and create frizz. Instead lightly scrunch and pat your hair, or better yet, use a t-shirt to dry your hair, as that will result in smoother strands.

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If you’ve just purchased a new makeup brush kit and are having a hard time remembering which brush to use where, adhere colored tape to the brush tips to help you remember. For example, you could apply a strip of green tape for eye makeup brushes and blue tape for foundation or blush brushes.

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If you’re used to placing your toothbrush in open containers on the counter, you may want to reconsider that choice. Studies have shown that airborne particles from a flushed toilet can make their way onto your toothbrush. Invest in toothbrush covers to keep your wand free of germs.

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Moisturize within five minutes after taking a shower or bath while your skin is still damp. This helps to seal in moisture more effectively and keep your skin feeling silky smooth all day long.

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If you’re reaching for SPF 30 and thinking that you’re getting double the protection of SPF 15, think again. A SPF 15 screens 93 percent of UVB rays, while a 30 screens 97 percent— just four percent more. What matters most is that you apply and reapply every few hours to make sure you’re protected.

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Need to dry your nails in a flash? Dunk freshly polished fingers into a bowl of ice and water for three minutes. Your polish won’t budge, we promise.

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Got puffy eyes? Pour chilled chamomile tea into an ice tray to create cubes you can rub under your eyes when you need to deflate. Chamomile has natural anti-inflammatory properties and the cold of the cube will stimulate circulation under the eyes.

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Did you know that many major retailers will now accept personal care items for return? At Sephora and Ulta you can bring opened products back within 60 days with a receipt for full credit. Most department store makeup counters accept returns as well. CVS also offers a 100% satisfaction guarantee on beauty products which they will accept for a full refund.

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If you’re a die-hard beauty junkie, chances are you’ve got a bathroom full of products that you pull in and out of your regimen rotation. Whenever you grab a product from your stash, always double check the expiration date. For seasonal products — think sunless tanner or body shimmer — adhere a tiny label with your date of purchase so you know when to keep and when to toss.

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