The Expectation of Female Perfection

Society is never easy on its people. There are stereotypes and expectations being placed on us from the moment we take our first breath. Some are based on the color of our skin. Others, on our body parts. Where there is an opportunity, there will be those who try to force beliefs and lifestyles onto anyone willing to listen. No one is safe from the judgment of social norms and social expectations. Still, some groups and individuals face worse and more persistent ridicule. The female body is a great example of this vicious cycle of expectation. We live in a society with the expectation of female perfection.

One of the biggest expectations of American society isn’t for a career or a good education. It’s for beauty. Obsession is something of an understatement concerning beauty standards in today’s society. Especially the last few years. Go on any social media platform and you will be immediately slammed with a plethora of make-up tutorials and beauty advice, some of which alter your appearance entirely.

The makeup and styles that were often reserved for an older, more mature – more adult – group, are taking over girls of a much younger age. Its completely disconcerting to confuse a thirteen-year-old for a 25-year-old. More so when those pre-teens are getting lip injections and spending hours on hair and makeup.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m all about female body and beauty positivity. It’s your body, you do what you want with it. These observations are not shaming the decisions of our young generations. Rather, they to criticize and question the negative role society plays in the lives of our youth.

One of the largest concerns is that the younger generations are so affected by what they see in magazines, and movies and on TV that it becomes their reality. It’s a new kind of American Dream: one of physical perfection.

Take popular trilogy, “The Hunger Games,” for example. In the book, Katniss’s character is described as unhealthily skinny. Essentially her family is starving- often going without food due to their poor and underprivileged status in their district. It is meant to portray the devastation that is caused by hierarchies and segregation. Unfortunately, some readers focused all of their attention on that more physical aspect of Katniss’s character, rather than the reason behind it.

When the star, Jennifer Lawrence, came out on screen for her big debut as “Katniss,” there was harsh and immediate criticism. Some viewers suggested that Jennifer Lawrence’s healthy body was too fat to fit the part.

Now, Lawrence is, by no means, fat. Sure, she wasn’t the walking skeleton that Katniss represented in the books, but how could they expect that unhealthy of a physical state from any potential actress? True fans and a number of well-known actresses rushed to Lawrence’s defense. But, it didn’t change the immediate response of many: to judge based on weight or bristly standards of Hollywood.

The portrayal of Katniss is a potential game changer. Young, impressionable readers and future viewers would look to their new favorite character as their idol. Katniss and Lawrence would be there real model – their inspiration. Like so many other celebrities, she would represent beauty standards especially western months.

So, what kind of message are we sending to girls if an underweight, malnourished actress feeds into this? It doesn’t matter why she looks how she doesn’t in the novels. From the moment Katniss or any female character is brought to life on screen, she becomes the #Goals of the entire generations. Lawrence isn’t the first bodyslammed, and she is not the last. With the stakes of everyday beauty running high, there will be those extremes and we have to wonder, how? How did we let it get this far? When did childhood become more about a better body and a better highlight than who has the best hiding spot for kick the can? When how many followers we have become more important than what we want to do when we grow up?

The Internet is just another door to disaster. More so for people already fighting uphill battles like eating disorders. It gives access to dangerous knowledge and the criticism of a society safely hidden behind the screen of their technology.

Eating disorders are still something of a taboo topic in today’s culture. It is becoming a more talked about the issue, but, as a result, the issue itself is becoming more hushed and better hidden from prying eyes. The Internet is only providing an outlet for the victims of the disorders. “Pro-Ana” sites are a particularly horrifying concept.

On these sites, sufferers of eating disorders come together to encourage each others’ disorders and shame those unsuccessful. Some even share tips on how to be more successful in their unhealthy habits. It’s self-destructive and as much as it as communally destructive. If you sensitize is a normalizes potential he deadly disorder. Eating disorder survivors from Australian have been working towards banning these “pro-Ana” sites to make a positive change. It is a small step in cutting the metaphorical umbilical cord to encouraged self-destruction and slavery to societal expectations.

How can we truly cut ties with the beauty standards of society, though? In many ways, it’s an impossible task. The impressions and presumptions are becoming a part of us- an in breakable habit, of sorts. Will the fascination with beauty, despite going against our morals, ever fade?

Continue Reading

7 DIY Treatments to Revive Your Hair

Winter is coming. And, for most of us, that means putting our hair through all kinds of chaos. Which also means desperately trying to find successful hair treatments. The heater at home does enough drying out, in itself. To make matters worse,  most of us face a huge drop in temperature during the cold season. That means more hot showers and using heat-powered products on our hair.

It doesn’t always seem like a big deal.A quick hair-dry here and there when we’re running late and don’t want our hair to freeze. It won’t kill us, right? True, but it is killing our hair and draining out all of the moisture. Trying to fix the problem once the damage is done can be a long and hopeless process. Not to mention, an expensive one.

While you can’t always quit while your ahead, you can at least take some precautions and add on a few treatments to improve the life of your hair through coming cold. Even better, you can do it all with common household products and avoid emptying your bank account.

1.Beer

Yeah, it seems weird, right? But a beer mask can do wonders for your hair and help you avoid using volumizing products that tangle your hair and dry out your scalp. The recipe requires ½ cup of flat beer (let it sit for a few hours), 1 tsp. of sunflower or canola oil and one raw egg. One you’ve got the mix down, how you apply it is up to you. Some may opt for the less-messy path of using a spray bottle. If you want to get a good soak on your hair though, dipping it back into a bowl of your beer mask will do just as well.

2. Honey

To prevent or revive dry hair, honey is one of the best natural ingredients to go for. No matter the cause: be it sun damage, curling irons, flat irons or just one too many shampoos, honey masks are nothing short of miraculous. The consistency is thick and hard to handle, so consider adding an oil of your choice to ease the application process. Make sure your hair is damp when you start the process and don’t forget to massage. Massaging is a vital step in any hair care treatment. It helps open up your pores and let the mask soak deep into your roots.

3. Avocado

Its not just a delicious ingredient that we love to see on our plates. The benefits and uses of avocados are countless. Frizz hair, is just one of many things the green superfood works wonders on. It isn’t the cheapest produce you can buy, but the mask will show results for up to two weeks. Arguably one of the easiest masks to master, all you do is mash up, smear on and let sit for fifteen minutes.

4. Egg

Raw egg is a holy grail of beauty regimes. It reveres some of the worst damage to your skin and hair. While some products or treatments meant to target one problem can cause another (dry hair treatments making your hair look oily and visa-versa) raw egg treats both. The fat and protein in egg is what moisturizes while the whites of the egg remove unwanted oil. Talk about versatility.

5. Apple Cider Vinegar

I first came across this product when I had some severe sun poising due to my sensitive skin and acne treatment. I did three-parts water and 1-part apple cider vinegar and it put my raw aloe to shame. Nothing took the burn out of my skin like ACV did. Of course, how astounded was I to discover that its usefulness surpassed pain relief and stretched out into beauty. It doesn’t smell great but its amazing, trust me. A handful of beauty gurus swear by the benefits of apple cider vinegar. Some claim its a cure all. It improves skin and hair from a number of issues- acne, dullness or dryness. All it needs a little red cape and an orchestrated theme song.

6. Yogurt

It tastes good. Its good for your body. Its good for your health, so why wouldn’t yogurt be good for your hair? Greek yogurt, especially, is perfect for very brittle hair. If you dye your hair or style it often, yogurt masks can make return a lot of life lost. The fattier the better and you can do it as often as you want. Apply it to dry or wet hair before shampooing and the effects will be immediate.

7. Coconut Oil

We had to save the best for last, of course. Coconut oil is, and always will be, one of the most influential and universal beauty products. You can use it as a moisturizer, a make-up remover, chap-stick, nail treatment. The possibilities of coconut oil treatments are endless. It is one of those grocery store buys that puts the most expensive, top of the line, products to shame.

We aren’t perfect. We do shitty things to our hair that only adds to the damage of our environment, the sun and the climate we live in. But, it doesn’t have to be a hassle taking care of your hair. These simple DIY treatments deserve to be put to good use. So, even if the heat is on blast, we took a hot, shampooing shower everyday instead of every other, and we’re dying it for the second time this month, it doesn’t have to end in the funeral of our hair.

Continue Reading

Cosmetic Brand Spotlight: Bésame

Hello, all you glamorous and fabulous people! This week, I was introduced by one of my friends to an interesting makeup brand that I’m sure most of you makeup-nistas would love to try and get your hands on! Thanks to the power of the Internet, Bésame is a trending topic among the beauty division. It is also in the most notable fashion magazines such as Elle, Vogue, and Marie Claire! Here’s the catch, most of their cosmetics available only through Sephora or exclusively online purchases.

Image result for besame cosmetics   Image result for besame cosmetics   

Bésame is a cosmetics line that specializes in classic and vintage makeup, representing the elegance, femininity, and strength of all women. This cosmetic brand’s purpose is to bring out the confidence in women everywhere. Founder of Bésame, Gabriela Hernandez, created this line in remembrance of her cherished times with her grandmother. Hernandez has always looked to her grandmother’s collection of vintage and classic makeup as inspiration. With the idea of bringing the classic romantic age back, Hernandez created the brand to remind women exactly how beautiful they are, regardless of time.

Bésame cosmetics is focused upon on the beauty of vintage makeup inspired by the time eras of the early 1920s-1950s. The color schemes and the packaging of each cosmetic are made accustomed to fit the style of the certain time period. In most of their products, red and gold are accented as part of their main color schemes.

Recently, Buzzfeed released a video that introduced classic makeup products and trends for the staff to try out, featuring all of the popular bestsellers of the brand, including their cake mascara, Delicate Rouge blush, and classic color lipsticks.

One of their most interesting products, in my opinion, would have to be their cake mascara. Presenting with a black block of mascara, cake mascara was one of the first forms of applying the product. Provided with a brush, users can apply the mascara on their eyelashes, eyebrows, and can even use it as eyeliner.

Delicate Rough blush features pigmented pink, red and orange colors that bring out the dramatic glow to the face, just like the style back over 90 years ago.

Who doesn’t love a good classic lipstick? It’s definitely a must-have in every woman’s cosmetic collection. Bésame’s classic color lipsticks are popular for not only its classic red tones (which has a variety of gorgeous colors) but for its buttery, textured finish and its fun, history fact of the time era that color was trending in.

Check out all the amazing products Bésame has to offer at https://besamecosmetics.com/. Or you can check out other exclusive products at Sephora’s website at http://www.sephora.com/search/search.jsp?keyword=besame.

Also, check out their YouTube channel at https://www.youtube.com/user/BesameGirl/featured on anything of the Bésame products and application.

So to all my glamorous people, this makeup is perfect for you. It basically screams out the kind of people we aspire to be, or who we already are. Which one of these Bésame products would you like to try? Let us know in the comments below! Or tweet it at @GlamorousPaper on what other classic trends and vintage makeup you would like to try!

Continue Reading

The Art of Chinese Face Mapping

Image result for chinese face mapping

Hello to all my lovely and beautiful Glamorous People! Let’s face it (literally): we all have struggles and insecurities about our acne. For real- who doesn’t? It’s totally normal and it’s a part of our human development. Recently, I noticed I started to breakout a few pimples around my T-zone area- mostly around my chin, mouth, and the center of my forehead area. It’s probably due to lack of sleep, stress, irregular eating schedules and a bunch of other factors that cause these red, painful bumps on my face.

That’s pretty easy to point out how you might have gotten acne. But did you know where acne might pop-up, can be a certain part of your immune system that causes it? This is called Chinese face mapping. Chinese face mapping is a longstanding, Eastern medicine practice used to determine how healthy your body. What it does is indicate the parts of the face that corresponds with a specific internal organ. If acne, pimple, or discoloration pops up on certain places on your face, it usually means that there is a deficiency with that internal organ. The only way to make it go away is to make changes in your diet and lifestyle.

There are many places on the face where it centers on different organs, but here’s a quick overview on the different parts of the face that indicates internal organ problems. (Plus, a bit of anatomy 101, just for you cool, biology geeks out there!)

Image result for forehead

Forehead (Above the brows)

The forehead indicates the gallbladder and bladder in the body. These two organs, apart from the kidney, act as a filter for the body by getting rid of the toxins and other foreign materials that shouldn’t be good for the immune system. If breakouts occur there, eat less processed or junk food and reduce the intake of fat in your diet. Instead, try to consume more organic and raw foods and probiotics. Getting enough sleep will also do the job.

Between the brows

This area, also including the middle part of the forehead, indicates the liver of the body. The liver is a main organ that acts as a filter along with the bladder and gallbladder. Breakouts in that area can indicate that you might be consuming too much rich foods such as dairy and meat. Limit your intake on those two food groups. You can opt for eating more fruits and veggies in your diet. This also might have something to do with pollution, or the air you’re breathing, especially if you live within the urban, city areas. Every once in a while, try to get some fresh, clean air by taking a walk in the park or neighboring hiking trails.

Image result for forehead

Cheeks

The right side of your cheeks is connected to your lungs, while the left side of your cheeks is connected to your kidneys (also related to your liver a well). Reasons being could be due to unhealthy foods, high stress, and smoking. Simplest solution to getting rid of skin problems on these areas is to eat healthy and consume less sugar. Eat foods that have a lot of water retained in them, such as cucumber and melons. The key to treatment is getting the proper hydration.

Image result for nose

Nose

This area is connected to your heart, can breakouts can happen due to pollution, inconsistent blood circulation, and high blood pressure. To counter this, exercise, watch cholesterol and high blood pressure levels, and sweat out toxins with soup, green tea, etc. Eating foods with fiber, vitamin B and omega-3 and 6 will also counter against constant acne on your nose.

Image result for mouth and chin

Mouth & Chin

Around the mouth and chin area is related to what goes on inside your stomach. The biggest factor to breakouts on these areas is due to bad diet and stress. Consuming too much fat, sweets, caffeine, and alcohol will cause some digestive problems in your stomach and will show on your face. Again, maintain a healthy diet of fruits, veggies, and fibers such as chia seeds and aloe vera can improve stomach health. Especially around the chin area, stress can cause hormones to break out and show as acne. To counter that, find ways to de-stress the body. You could start by drinking spearmint tea or taking omega-3’s to relieve breakouts. In any case, also check with your local doctor or dermatologist on your hormone levels.

Overall, maintain a healthy body and face can be obtaining a healthy diet with no processed ingredients, drinking a lot of water, having at least eight hours of sleep, and taking the time to de-stress your mind and body.

Did you Glamorous people find Chinese face mapping accurate? Let me know in the comments below! Or tweet @GlamorousPaper for other remedies to clear breakouts and improving your immune system!

Continue Reading

Lush Toothy Tabs & Tooth Powder

toothy-tabs

Lush Cosmetics is a cosmetics line that focuses on producing safe and natural beauty products. They have recently come out with a revolutionary idea: toothpaste that isn’t in paste form. The concept behind this product, named Toothy Tabs and Tooth Powder, is to give consumers an option for a natural toothpaste that still gets the job done.

Toothy Tabs: What Are They?

Toothy tabs are the vegan tablet forms of toothpaste in the new line. Each bottle of the product, priced at $10, has a decent amount of tabs that should last a few weeks if used daily. Lush recommends to use the tablets by crushing them in your mouth and then continuing to brush as you would normally. The line has come out with seven different types of the Toothy Tabs: Bling!, Dirty, Miles of Smiles, Limelight, Smile, Boom, and Oral Pleasure.

Bling! is a tablet that has been dusted with edible gold glitter for that fancy feeling. These tablets advertises a refreshing citrus flavor along with stimulating guarana seed powder to energize you for the day! Dirty is a simple white tablet that most resembles the original toothpaste we all know and use. Dirty’s defining feature is a classic spearmint flavor with a few essential oils thrown in there. Miles of Smiles is another white tablet. But this one has the promise of a strong triple mint flavor derived from the combination of english peppermint, organic peppermint and wild mint. Limelight is a green and yellow marbled tablet. It promises to give you a powerful citrus and mint flavor from lemon, lime and spearmint oils. One of these tablets also has baobab fruit powder that turns your mouth into a fizzing toothpaste party!

Sparkle is another tablet with a citrus flavor from grapefruit oil and lemon peel but with a surprising twist: black pepper. This unique addition serves to give a warming, tingly sensation during your experience. Boom! is a black tablet that is made of detoxifying ingredients such as powdered charcoal and gunpowder tea. Through the combination of black pepper oil and ground chili, a cola flavor and a warming feeling is created for this tablet. Lastly, Oral Pleasure is a magenta tablet with a sweet and tart flavor of passion fruit. Rose oil and tantalizing electric daisies also give this tablet a tingling feeling when used.

Lush's Tooth Powder
Lush’s Tooth Powder

Tooth Powder: Better Than Normal Toothpaste? 

Tooth Powder is a vegan alternative to regular toothpaste and basically an already crushed form of the Toothy Tabs. It’s also the same price. Lush recommends using the powder by dabbing your damp toothbrush into the pot and brushing as you normally would. The product has three different options: Tooth Fairy, Ultrablast, and Atomic.

Tooth Fairy  is a pink tooth powder with a sweet strawberry and lemon flavor with a little luster in the mix for added sparkle! Ultrablast is a light green powder that promises and extra minty flavor with a twist. It’s composed of peppermint, spearmint and lavender for ultimate freshness. The twist is wasabi powder that provides a refreshing cooling sensation. Atomic is another green powder that is advertised as a ‘spice market’. This specific Tooth Powder contains coffee, cloves, cardamom, cinnamon, ginger and white pepper in order to provide a spicy tingle.

So… Are They Worth Ditching Our Regular Toothpaste? 

If you’re up to feeling adventurous with your oral hygiene routine or just for trying something new, go for it! Each product is highly rated on Lush’s website, all flavors are either three stars or above. Buzzfeed recently posted a video in which employees tried a few of the new products. The reactions were very mixed between dislike and moderate liking. I say if you’re feeling brave enough, why not try it? Go forth and have fun brushing your teeth like a hipster!

Continue Reading