Your Daily Beauty & Make-up Skin Resource for Younger, Healthier Skin

Beauty and Confidence is the definitive guide to beauty, make-up, wellness, and healthy looking skin. Our Editorial focus brings the reader tips and ideas on how to use beauty products to bring out your natural beauty while keeping your face feeling energized and looking young and healthy.

The Secrets to Smudge-Proof Makeup

All too often, I catch glimpses of women with unknowingly smeared lipstick and raccoon-like eye makeup on the street. Hey, it happens -- but it doesn’t have to! As a makeup artist for Good Morning America, it’s my job to make sure the anchors and reporters look perfect from the show’s start to finish. With those hot studio lights and high-pressure scenarios, it’s a challenge to make their makeup smudge- and budge-proof.

Over the years, I’ve learned a few tricks that really work. With these following tips, you’ll look flawless for hours.

1. Choose the right foundation.
Finding the right foundation that won’t look caked-on after a few hours is essential. The best product depends on your skin type. Experiment with drugstore concealers to find the right one. Sephora-brand concealers are also dependable. They come in a variety of shades for all skin tones and rarely require reapplication throughout the day. I like how they sink into the skin, leaving a nice, natural look.

2. Finish with translucent powder.
Television anchors are constantly under bright studio lights. My trick for keeping them shine-free: I use a translucent powder, which leaves skin with a matte finish. I recommend doing a touchup through the course of a day. Use a facial tissue to gently blot the skin and remove excess oil. Then reapply the translucent powder.

3. Go waterproof.
How often have you looked in the mirror to see smeared mascara or a black under-eye smudge? To prevent this from happening, use waterproof mascara. Some can leave your eyelashes looking brittle or clumpy, so test out a variety of brands.

4. Prime your lids and lips.
Creased, smudged eye shadow is one of the biggest beauty blunders I see. But one simple step can prevent this from happening: First, prime your lid with concealer. Without a primer, the makeup has nothing to hold onto -- and the natural oils in your skin will cause it to slide off and crease. So gently dab a little concealer onto your eyelid before applying any eye makeup.

You can also use this same trick for your lips. Using a finger, blend your concealer right onto your lips. If you find that this causes your lip color to look too light, try filling in your entire lip with a natural-colored lip liner. Then blot with a facial tissue before slicking on your lipstick.

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The Truth About the Summer Cold Virus

Q. Are there different types of viruses in warm weather? 
For the most part, viruses are the same year-round. But there is one kind that's more common in the summer: the enterovirus, also called the stomach flu. This virus, which lasts a week or two, causes digestive issues and respiratory symptoms.

Because enteroviruses are spread the same way as colds -- through direct contact with another person or an infected surface -- remind your kids to wash their hands often and avoid sharing drinking glasses, eating utensils or water bottles.

Q. How should I treat a summer cold virus? 
Don't ask your pediatrician for antibiotics, since they're not useful for viruses. Instead, treat a fever with a pain reliever, like Tylenol. Cough medicine and decongestants can provide relief from cold symptoms. Check the packaging for age restrictions. And if your child is suffering from stomach issues caused by the enterovirus -- and is 6 or older -- you can give her an antacid.

Of course, make sure your child gets plenty of rest. You should also ensure she's drinking regularly, since the hot weather ups the risk for dehydration. Cooling baths, light clothing and air-conditioning can also help your little one stay comfortable while she recovers.

If one kid in your family is sick, how do you protect the rest of the brood? Do you let him or her play with brothers and sisters? Tell us in the comments below.

Create an At-home Spa: 4 Simple Herbal Recipes

You're in serious need of a pampering day at the spa, but you're short on time and money. The solution? Transform your own bathroom into a sanctuary. At the Lake Austin Spa Resort, I teach classes on how to turn common kitchen and garden ingredients into luxurious skin scrubs, bath salts and more.

The key is using herbs and flowers. Certain aromas have a powerful effect on the nervous system, leaving you feeling relaxed or energized. I recommend using the following ingredients for their scents:

  • Lavender: This soothing, antimicrobial herb has been shown to help you relax and get a good night's sleep. Wesleyan University conducted a 31-person study and found that when people sniffed lavender before bedtime, they got more slow-wave (or deep) sleep and reported feeling more energetic in the morning.
  • Eucalyptus: Developing research suggests this woodsy scent may help break up mucus and stop coughs, according to the National Institutes of Health. And a study published in the journal Respiratory Medicine shows that eucalyptol, the active ingredient, has anti-inflammatory properties.
  • Mint: Perfect for hot days, spearmint and peppermint are cooling and refreshing. And a recent study published in the International Journal of Sports Physical Therapy also found that applying menthol to the skin increases blood flow.
  • Ginger: When grated and added to a bath, the spicy root provides an invigorating sensory energy boost. It can be mixed with coconut oil for a mildly exfoliating scrub.
  • Rosemary: This herb has a refreshing, stimulating effect.
  • Rose Petals: Pluck them from your own garden to add a sweet fragrance to any bath or body treatment.

Once you've chosen your herbs, mix them up with one of the following recipes. With a few household ingredients, you can go from stressed and tired to relaxed and glowing:

Basic Bath Infusion

  • 4 cups fresh herbs (or 2 cups dried)
  • 4 cups water

Boil water in a large pot; add herbs. Stir, cover and remove from heat. Steep for 10 minutes, strain and pour into a hot bath.

Soothing Bath Bag

  • 1/4 cup powdered milk
  • 1/4 cup Epsom salt
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup dried herbs
  • 10 drops of essential oil

Stir together all ingredients and place in a muslin bag (or several layers of cheesecloth); secure with a rubber band. Add to hot bath and steep for several minutes. Open the bag and use the softened herbs as an exfoliating body scrub. You can also seal unused bags in a glass jar for several months.

Energizing Coffee Body Scrub

  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 4-inch sprig of fresh rosemary
  • 1/4 cup coffee beans, finely ground
  • 2 tablespoons bentonite clay (found in health food stores)
  • 3 tablespoons oil, such as olive, grapeseed, coconut or avocado
  • 3 drops each of rosemary oil and grapefruit or peppermint oil

Combine sugar and rosemary in a spice grinder and process until finely ground. Pour into a medium-sized bowl and mix with the remaining ingredients. Use the scrub on skin; shower off. Moisturize with additional body oil.

Skin-Softening Bath Blend

  • 1/4 cup rolled or instant oatmeal
  • 1/4 cup milk powder
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup herbs of choice
  • 10 to 15 drops of essential oil
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 2 teaspoons body oil

In a food processor, combine oatmeal, milk powder, sugar and herbs until coarsely ground. Pour in bowl and combine with essential oil, honey and body oil. Place in muslin bag and steep in a hot bath for a few minutes. Use cold tea bags (green tea or chamomile) over your eyes as you enjoy your bath.

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Beauty Tips 101: How to Apply Self-Tanner

After a long winter, you’re ready to toss the extra layers. But while the spring brings longer days, you won’t get any color from the five-minute walk from your car to office. Besides, you know that spending too much time in the sun can expose you to harmful UV rays.

The solution? Self-tanners are a safer option, and you can apply them at home. Whether you’re a self-tanning pro or novice, our guide will help you achieve an even golden glow without the streaks. Get ready to transform your complexion from ghostly white to a sun-kissed glow.

Step 1: Get prepped.

For the self-tanner to set in evenly, your skin should be as fresh as possible. Shave your legs and exfoliate any area that you’re self-tanning, with a liquid exfoliating scrub.

Step 2: Apply self-tanner from bottom to top.
Wearing latex gloves, gently apply self-tanner onto your skin. Start at your feet and slowly move up your body to avoid awkward positions, and make sure everything goes on smoothly and evenly. Keep a box of facial tissues on hand to wipe away any excess.

Step 3: Smooth out streaks.
Areas with thinner skin -- your feet, knees, elbows, wrists and ankles -- are susceptible to streaking. Go over these areas carefully to ensure the tan doesn’t look patchy. To avoid streaks on your palms, wipe them down with a tissue after you’re finished.

Step 4: Wait and see.
You need to give the self-tanner the chance to seep in and do its thing, so avoid showering or sleeping (unless you want streaked sheets) for at least six hours afterward. To avoid getting the product on your clothes, wear a loose, old T-shirt. Once your tanner has set, be sure to moisturize each day. Keeping your skin hydrated will extend the length of that gorgeous glow.