Friday, May 31, 2013

Beating Oily Skin During The Summer (Guest Post)

Beating Oily Skin During The Summer

Oily skin can cause a problem all year long, but the summer is when excessive oil production is at it's worse. Between the heat and humidity, your skin is left a mess! Many people think that there is nothing they can do about this short of buying super-expensive skin products that may or may not work and simply stay inside all summer long. But there's hope! Really, there is! You don't have to spend a fortune or lock yourself indoors this summer in order to keep the oils and the dread shine that goes with it at bay! Just follow these easy tips and you can beat oily skin during the summer and all year round!

Sunscreen Or Protective Covering

Although you may not know it, protecting your skin with large brimmed hats or sunscreen (or both) is your very first defense against excessive oil secretions caused by heat. Your skin becomes damaged when it is exposed to the sun's rays for an extended period of time, and it is during the times that it is damaged that oil production will increase even more than before. So be kind to your skin and keep it covered if you want to beat excess oil secretion this summer.

Blotting Papers or Cool Water

Using blotting papers to 'blot out' any oils that build up on your skin throughout the day can be really useful in keeping blemishes at bay and the oils on the surface of your skin down to a bare minimum. If you don't like blotting papers, you can always splash your face with cool water and pat it dry. This method will also help to keep the oils down, and may even be a more effective method. It doesn't work well if you're wearing makeup, however, because obviously it starts running and smudging. Feel free to use the two methods interchangeably to suit your needs.


Good hydration is key to everything- your skin, your hair, your health. That is why it is of the utmost importance that you make sure you stay hydrated. Water is also the best first option, but sports drinks are also a good way to stay  hydrated. Beware that sports drinks have extra calories in them, however, so if you aren't going to burn those calories off before bed, you may want to stick to the water instead.

Good Foods

Eating a healthy diet with a variety of good foods is also very important. This is the way you get all of the nutrients which your skin needs to stay healthy. You should eat plenty of fresh fruits and veggies, a few complex carbohydrates, and some lean protein. Splurging on a greasy hamburger or a can of coke once in a while won't harm  you, but limit yourself to a very moderate- minimal, actually- amount.

Those are our tips on how you can beat oily skin this summer. Read them, know them, and use them to help you and your skin stay healthier and look better. If you have your own tips to keeping oily skin under control during the summer, or want to comment on one of the ones we mentioned here today, please feel free to do so in the comments below. We love hearing what you have to say!

Author Bio: Amanda is a skin care fanatic and author of which features an article on the best moisturizers for oily skin. Aside from writing about make up, Amanda loves to travel and one day dreams of living in Paris. Questions or comments for Amanda? Feel free to connect with her @Skincare_HQ on Twitter!

Photo 1 and 2 courtesy of Google Images; the original owner retains all rights.

Tags: "Skincare HQ" "beauty post" "Skin care" "oily skin" "summer skin care" "summer beauty regimen"

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Lawn & Garden: Patio Furniture

On the heels of Memorial Day, the unofficial start of summer, many families begin thinking about the creating the perfect outdoor space. For me, one of the greatest parts of being a home owner is the extension of home in to the out of doors. My home in Atlanta was my ultimate "Barbie Dreamhouse" and had a cute patio space outback.

Creating a comfortable outdoor space was an on-going project that I revisited each summer. I had many things to consider; furniture, plants, lighting, bug repellant, and even wifi. 

My biggest challenge was trying to tackle all things at once. Of course, my mom quickly told me to take on one project at a time.

My first choice was plants then on to outdoor furniture. There were so many outdoor furniture styles to compare. I had to select tables, chairs or sets; cushions, no cushions, it was a lot.

I knew my overall goal was to create Tuscan oasis in the middle of an Atlanta suburb. I did somewhat but I know the patio needs more.

How did you spruce your outdoor space for the summer?

Tags: "Home Depot", "Lawn & Garden", "Patio Furniture" "Outdoor Furniture" "Summer 2013"

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Wordless Wednesday; School Birthday Parties - Arabian Style

School Birthday Parties

We celebrate birthdays in Abu Dhabi! 

Tags: "birthday party" "teacher in Abu Dhabi" "do Muslims celebrate birthdays" "kindergarten" "Arabian birthday" "Arab Birthday" "birthday in the UAE" "birthday in Abu Dhabi"

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Travel Tuesday; Summer Vacation Plans

Madrid, Spain

Summer plans are in full effect and I am eager for the school year to be OVER. I've had quite a ride this year and it's time for me to exercise my lusting for travel.

I think I have my plans finalized and I've selected the following; Madrid, Spain in June, The French Riveria/ Monaco in July as well as the US, and Amsterdam in August.

Madrid, Spain

I selected Madrid because getting to Barcelona from Abu Dhabi was a travel hassle. A simple six hour flight to Barcelona was extended to 12-16 because the connections were off and there weren't any direct flights. During this time of year, or any time, I can't fathom the foolishness of it all so I opted for Madrid.

Monte Carlo, Monaco

For July, I wanted to do something a bit more elite and upscale. My previous destinations were definitely nice but nothing says POSH like Monaco. I am tickled that I will be parlaying with a billionaire or five along the coast of the French Rivera and engaging in the other side of life. 

French Rivera

My last stop of the summer is Amsterdam. My sister, my mom, and I will frolic through the streets of Amsterdam to see what's what. I will probably drag them through Amsterdam's Red Light District and buy embarrassing (but fun) toys. We will definitely tour Anne Frank's House and taken in the local sites.


I have a feeling that Amsterdam will be my favorite European city; but I'm not sure if it can surpass Paris. We will soon see.

Have you guys ever been to these cities? What suggestions do you have for me?

Photo Credit: Google Images

Tags: "Google Images" "travel" "Monaco" "French Riviera" "Madrid" "Spain" Anne Franak" "teacher in Abu Dhabi"  "Amsterdam" "Amsterdam's Red Light District"

Monday, May 27, 2013

Happy Memorial Day 2013

Friday, May 24, 2013

The Best Fashion Sites to Check Daily (Guest Post)

As much as we’d like to spend each day jumping on a plane for the next fashion week or rummaging for the funkiest shoes on 8th Street, it can be a challenge even to grab Vogue or Elle from the newsstand and read about these things. Luckily, the web is a kind place for vicarious fashionistas. Here are ten of the very best E-magazines and blogs that bring to you the adventure of looking stylish on the regular.

Image Courtesy of Ajuk/Wikimedia Commons

This London-based, but exclusively online magazine, is ideal for fashionistas hungry for daily updates of the latest looks, modeled by an eclectic and sometimes unexpected gallery of faces. What’s more, you get your hand held through fun, but practical, style tutorials from celeb advisors, as well as ahead-of-the-curve updates on culture and the hippest—and hippest looking—underground musicians.

Less is definitely more with the minimal, visually arresting layout of Nowness. While many sites bombard you with a mosaic of links and looks, Nowness highlights one standout feature per day (alongside a convenient calendar of recent happenings at the page’s bottom).


Nothing is a true substitute for a hard copy of W:  its oversized, high-concept monthly spreads are the standard bearer for coffee-table (or even gallery) quality images of fashion at its most sublime. Nevertheless, W’s online counterpart is more than a consolation prize for those of us who no longer keep up with paper mags.  Bringing the same marriage of avant-couture and ingenious theme-shoots that makes W special to a visually appealing, hi-res website, W online is a must.

The Frugality may dispense with couture price points and high-art photo shoots, but this incredibly practical blog makes no sacrifices when it comes to being fashion-forward.  Hosted by Red junior editor, Alexandra Steadman shares advice on everything from how to dress your five year old like a rock star to finding the swankiest area rug for your studio—all on a budget.

Style Scrapbook

Andy Torres lives the jet-setting, boutique-browsing life many of us wish we had, but rather than rubbing it in, she shares the wealth of her findings with this helpful blog site. Considering she seems to make it to every fashion week worth mentioning and sports a totally unique ensemble in every on-the-go snapshot, it’s a wonder where she finds the time for her faithful daily updates.

Image Courtesy of Tim Alamenciak/Wikimedia Commons

A couture fantasia, in which Commes des Garcons and Lagerfeld are the coin of the realm, this E-mag has amassed a devoted following for its exclusive “Hinterviews”—candid conversations inside the minds of the men and women who design and define what we see on the runways.

Created by Geneva Vanderzeil, this blog transcends simply shopping and delivers daily DIY advice on how to liven up your wardrobe and create new looks in fast, affordable ways.  Soaked in style through and through- even the how-to photographs are occasions for ogling.

No round-up of fashion websites could go without mentioning Net-a-Porter, a top-to-bottom portal onto the world of the world’s great designs (and the women who can afford to wear them). On top of countless links to highest-of-the-high new products, the site has a gorgeously realized magazine that manages to capture the look of a paper publication.

At first glance, this site seems like too much to handle, but that’s simply because it packs so much in. In fact, it’s as well-designed and navigable as can be, and for anyone interested in any aspect of vintage clothing—be it the best boutique in your area or reviews of books on Art Deco—this is for you.

The creation of Richard Mortimer, the flamboyant impresario who created the East London club Boombox, has translated the fierce energy of afterhours clubland style into an unpredictable, but predictably fabulous, ezine.

For the on-the-go fashionista that desires the latest updates, these are just a few of the best fashion websites that are top-notch and cutting-edge.

Marcela De Vivo is a freelance writer from So California whose writing covers beauty tips, skin care solutions, skin lightening and personal health. As a fashion lover herself, she enjoys providing others tips on where they can find the latest fashion trends.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

4 Creative Home Decorating Ideas for the Single City Girl

Whether you’re a fashion maven with sass or a whimsical romantic, decorating your personal space is all about creative self-expression and inspiration. Create a space spotlighting decorative items that are outside of their element. For instance, bring empty wine bottles into the bedroom and shoes into the living room. Dramatic pops of color and fanciful wall accents are also stylish solutions. From the ambitious student attending one of the many prestigious interior design schools in San Francisco, to the established driven careerist working their way up the corporate ladder in New York City, here are four trendy and unique ideas for the single city gal who’s on an interior-decorating mission:

Wine Bottles

Accessorize a trio of wine bottles with your collection of bracelets and bangles, ala interior designer and style blogger Aimee Song. Hanging your bracelets around the neck of your wine bottles is not only a clever way to store and display your jewelry, but it also creates vintage flair for your room. Sophia Riesling Francis Coppola California Wine, NO Vineyards and Winery Sauvignon Blanc, Lake County Calif. and Cupcake Chardonnay have trendy labels that create a stylish look after displaying jewelry around the bottle necks.

Photo by Adam Cutler via Flickr

Sexy Heels

No accessory is more feminine than a strappy, sexy heel. Why should they hide in the dark shadows of your closet? Sure, hide away your Brooks running shoes and Reef flip flops, but flaunt those designer heels even when they’re not on your feet. For a contemporary look, stack fashion magazines on your coffee table and set a pair of leopard booties on top. Shoes don’t belong on a coffee table, which makes this decor even more forbidden, yet fashionable. Hang a black pump off a framed photo of a GNO or adorn an end table by placing stilettos facing inward in front of a collection of books.

Photo by Maegan Tintari via Flickr

Red, Red Wine

Inspired by Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner’s apartment in the Upper East Side, decorate your living or dining room minimally. Then spotlight areas with dramatic fuchsia accents. Place artificial roses the color of merlot in a metallic silver vase and place on the corner of your bookshelf. Add color to your dining room table with tall, dark purple candlesticks. You can also create moodiness with a fuchsia wall hanging, drapery and throw pillows on a neutral-color couch. Complement fuchsia pieces with turquoise home accessories such as a candle, vase or artwork.

Photo by islandjoe via Flickr

Storybook Wall

Fashion designer and lifestyle blogger Lauren Conrad blanketed bare wall space in her home with torn pages from a book. Creating a vintage and whimsical focal point, paste the pages to a large, painted panel in every direction. Prior to pasting pages, paint the wall a champagne pink or mint green hue to create a charming, romantic ambience. Lauren tells, “I like it because when we open the windows the pages flutter and it gives the room movement.” At the bottom corners of the storybook panel, set a vase with pink roses or a stacked trio of vintage books.

Photo by Neal Jennings via Flickr

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Wordless Wednesday; Dubai

Wordless Wednesday; Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Tags: "Wordless Wednesday" "dubai" "UAE" "United Arab Emirates" "burj khalifa" "Dubai Marina"

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

A New Kind of Mojo

Once upon a time I was a girl with a healthy heart. It seems that over the past few years, the added weight, reduced exercised and my refusal to take cholesterol lowering meds because of the side effects bullied my heart. During the past two weeks, I thought and was told that I had GERD and really bad gas; turns out I had 6 minor heart attacks. I didn't have any of the classic symptoms except deep tingling and burning in my chest. In hindsight, two were very intense and lasted well over an hour. One of the stronger ones awakened me from my sleep and all I could do was cry and pray. It no longer felt like gas but a 4AM on a remote island in the middle of the Arabian Gulf, I felt trapped and isolated. Abu Dhabi was hours away so I called my physical protector; my Ash.

I finally made it to the hospital on the island and there was finally a doctor there who knew to check for "troponin" and "ckmb". It was then the official heart attacks were noted but without the proper equipment, they did not know two of my arteries were clogged. Because I refused to sit in another day in a facility that was of no use to me, my health, and ultimately my life; I left AMA and luckily I did because I was in critical condition.Two of three of my arteries were clogged. The doctor at Sheikh Khalifa Medical City was able to open one artery and implant a stent and the other formed several smaller vessels to the main artery but it's stilled clogged. I am on statins now with the hopes it will open the closed artery so that one can receive a stent. My main artery was clear and open.

So, my apologies for being away, I survived six hear attacks within the past two weeks while still going to work daily and loving my Ash. 

Strange events indeed; but this young life will carry on with love, care, exercise, and heart healthy foods.

Tags: "heart attack" "troponin" "ckmb" "heart attacks in women"

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Wordless Wednesday; Ode to Atlanta, Georgia

Ode to Atlanta, Georgia

Tags: "Ode to Atlanta, Georgia", "Atlanta, GA" "Atlanta" "Georgia" "Georgia Peach" "Ikea in Atlanta" "Midtown Atlanta" "World of Coke" "Georgia Aquarium" 

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