Category Archives: Tips

Beauty Tool Road Test: RapidLash

Title_SlideBy Desiree Stordahl, Senior Beauty Editor

Here’s the lowdown on RapidLash:

RapidLash is packaged similarly to a liquid eyeliner with an extremely thin brush. You simply use the wand to swipe the solution across your upper lash line and let the treatment work its magic.

While Latisse relies on bimatoprost to do the growing, RapidLash uses an ingredient with molecular similarities called isopropyl cloprostenate. Because this isn’t classified as a drug, RapidLash doesn’t require a prescription and hence hasn’t been as heavily tested as Latisse (although the company behind RapidLash has done their own testing to a certain extent).

But the big question is, does it work?

Just like with Latisse, it takes a while to see results. Around the fifth week of nightly application, I finally started to notice my lashes were longer, and by the seventh week I had a few that were way longer than the rest.

The results weren’t all that noticeable on my bare, blonde lashes (RapidLash doesn’t make lashes any darker). But with mascara on, my lashes definitely looked longer than they had before I started the treatment, and I was impressed.

However, this doesn’t mean you should go out and buy the next lash growth serum you see at the drugstore. While they may tout lash growing abilities via peptides, plant extracts or other special ingredients, most lash growth serums and mascaras are a scam and simply can’t affect hair growth.

RapidLash is an exception. At around $50 for 3 ml (which lasted about two months) versus $125 for 3 ml from Latisse, it’s a more affordable way to dabble in lash growth.

*It should also be noted that with both products there are potential side effects, such as a temporary darkening along the lash line. While I didn’t experience this, that doesn’t mean you won’t. Consult with your physician if you have concerns.


The Best of Beauty on the Web

Dior Homme FragranceThe Huffington Post reports that Robert Pattinson, aka Edward Cullen, has signed on to be the face of Dior Homme fragrance. Nicely done, Dior. We approve!


AnnaAnna Paquin’s sexy vampire look for the True Blood premiere gets rave reviews from E!’s Fashion Police. What’s not to love about the trendy, side swept hair and “to die for” makeup?


BestofBeauty_SLide03Lucy Hale adds “Pretty Little Ambassador” to her repertoire as the new official spokeswoman for Avon’s beauty boutique brand, mark.


Jennifer EdgyJennifer Aniston stuns the world with an edgy look. Glamour applauds her braided-back hairstyle and attributes it to a boost in self-confidence. We think the icon of classic style pulls off the “edgy look” just fine.


NailsIf you love this adorable twist on Summer nails as much as we do, check out for more creative nail inspiration.


Michelle PhanLove the idea of fake lashes but afraid to try them? Internet beauty tutorial sensation, Michelle Phan, gives advice on choosing the right “falsies” for your eye shape.


Dita Von TeeseDita Von Teese is no stranger to being the center of attention, and that’s a good thing, considering she literally stopped traffic at the #fragranceawards.


Beach Spray HairA special thank you to for this little gem. Beach sprays for every hair type—yes, please!


Nigel and TysonNigel Barker and Tyson Beckford…need we say more?


Benefit CosmeticsLooks like a rough day on the job for employees at Benefit Cosmetics. Is anyone else jealous? #MustBeNice

Sneak Peek! Coming up on Inside Beautiful

ep-8Wondering how beauty queens always look so flawless? Get insider secrets from reigning Miss California, Mabelynn Capeluj and our very own former Miss California, Tami Farrell.

Plus, tune in as our rockin’ reporter Erin Lucas breaks down this week’s buzzworthy beauty news, and stick around for Reba Buhr’s Makeup Shakeup segment with makeup artist to the stars, Desirae Cherman.

And don’t miss our Beauty Insider segment with Melissa Magsaysay and Tina Dizon on everything you need to know about hair extensions (at-home and from the salon).

Catch all this and more, every week on Inside Beautiful!

How to Test Makeup Safely!


Powders:  Eyeshadow/Blush/Bronzer

Spray tissue with alcohol disinfectant and wipe off the top layer.  Use a new disposable sample brush to apply the makeup.  It is helpful if you repeat the first step after use to ensure the palette is free of your germs for the next tester.  Throw away your sample brush.


Lips:  Lipstick, Lipgloss, Lipstains

Never apply lip products directly to your mouth! First, spray tissue with alcohol, wipe off the top layer and use a new, disposable applicator to apply. Most salespeople are happy to do the disinfecting for you – just ask. And if you’re still a little freaked out, try applying the color to the back of your hand. It won’t look the same as it will on your lips, but at least you can get a sense of the texture, opacity, and pigmentation.

Pencils: Eyeliners, Lip Liners, etc.

You should sharpen off the top layer of anything that comes in a pencil form.  Wipe with the alcohol tissue for extra precaution.  Eyeliners and lip liners are best tested on your hands.  The eye area in particular in known for manifesting bacteria, and the last thing you want is pink eye from a tester!


Foundations that come out of a pump have a very low risk of contamination.  Make sure you use a NEW disposable sponge or applicator.  Avoid testing foundations that come in jars – there’s no way of knowing if someone has dipped their finger in there. Luckily, many cosmetic counters are happy to supply you with a few days’ worth of foundation samples. Try your luck at major retailers like Sephora, Macy’s and Nordstrom.


Though it is not recommended to try mascaras on your eyes before buying, we know that some of you are going to do it anyway.  Make sure you are using a new disposable mascara wand (don’t use the one that belongs to the tester).  If you need to re-dip for more mascara, get a NEW wand… double dipping – this is where the contamination begins.  If you just want to see the color and texture, we strongly recommend testing the product on your hand or hair, this keeps the product a safe distance from those gorgeous eyes!

Nail Polish:

Thankfully, nail polish is one product you don’t have to worry too much about.  It is fairly safe to test polish on your nails; just make sure you aren’t testing on a finger with any sores or open wounds!

Bonus Tips:

• Test on Weekdays.  If you know you are going to be trying on makeup, avoid shopping on the weekends.  This is the busiest time for makeup counters, and there will be a much greater chance of cross-contamination.

• Use New Applicators or Brushes. Ask for a new, unused applicator before testing any product.

• No Jars or Pots.  Don’t test ANYTHING that comes in a jar or a pot!  The contamination in these products goes below the surface layer, so simply wiping the top won’t cut it.  Stay safe and just don’t go there.

Treat Your Hair Like You Treat Your Skin!

HairCareBlogWe put our hair through a lot. We brush, tie, knot, crimp, curl, straighten, braid, dye, and yank it in every direction. And let’s not forget the damage done to our tresses by UVA and UVB rays. It’s no wonder that the texture changes and our hair thins as we get older.

Currently trending in Europe and Asia, women are turning to skincare-like hair treatments on the market to pamper their hair and make it look healthy and beautiful. And truthfully, the scalp should be considered part of our skincare regimen: it suffers similar signs of aging, including hyperpigmentation, dryness and inflammation.

Anti-aging ingredients, such as amino acids (like arginine and alpha-lipoic acid), fatty acids (ceramides), vitamins (pro-vitamin B5 and E) and peptides, can help ensure healthier hair by fighting free radicals, decreasing inflammation, and moisturizing skin – all of which stimulate hair growth. But you can do more than just look for shampoos and conditioners containing these actives.  More and more, masks, oils, and serums offer distinctive and essential benefits to keep your scalp healthy and your hair beautiful.

Masks work particularly well because they are left on the scalp for extended periods of time and help restore hair, while imparting shine and lasting conditioning for more manageable, shiny hair.

Hair serums are also important, as they offer super-concentrated actives that treat the scalp and hair follicle, providing protective, corrective, and anti-aging benefits.

Oils (specifically stimulating ones like sage, rosemary, and eucalyptus) increase circulation and balance the pH levels of the scalp. And products with a base of coconut oil are great because, unlike mineral oil, they penetrate the hair shaft, and reduce damage.

But perhaps one of the most important things, and something we should think about more often, is protecting our hair and scalp from UVA/UVB rays. Look for products containing broad-spectrum SPF, and apply them before exposing your hair to sun, salt, or chlorinated water. Broad-spectrum SPF is an essential summer staple that will protect your scalp and hair, as well as your skin, against thermal aggressions.

Treating your scalp and hair with more innovative and powerful hair care products will ensure improved hair with better vitality. Even if it takes a little extra time, your amazing, beautiful, healthy hair is worth it!

Some great products to try:

• Peter Thomas Roth’s Hair To Die For serum, which is touted as a powerful, revolutionary skincare-inspired formula that promotes stronger, denser, thicker, fuller and more luscious looking hair.

• Kérastase Initialiste, a skincare-inspired super serum that acts on the four attributes of total hair beauty: strength, shine, softness and substance.

• Kérastase Resistance Masque Force Architecte, which is said to intensely replenish while rebuilding structure of hair fiber. Smoothes, heals and protects hair, helps prevent breakage and split ends.

• Oribe Gold Lust Nourishing Hair Oil, a luxuriously light oil that absorbs instantly to restore hair to its prime. Infused with a rich blend of jasmine, edelweiss flower, lychee, sandalwood, cassis, bergamot and argan extracts, this oil penetrates the hair to deeply condition, strengthen and smooth,imparting intense nourishment and incredible shine.

• Ojon Damage Reverse Restorative Hair Treatment Plus, which restores vibrant health to even the most deeply damaged hair. Plus, it helps increase hair’s strength, protecting it against breakage.

• Ojon Rare Blend Oil Total Hair Therapy, a multi-tasking wonder that protects, nourishes, repairs and transforms dull, dry or damaged hair to vibrant health. Instantly, hair looks glossier and shinier and feels softer, silkier, and more luxurious.   We put our hair through a lot.  We brush, tie, knot, crimp, curl, straighten, braid, dye, and yank it in every direction.  And let’s not forget the damage done to our tresses by UVA and UVB rays.  It’s no wonder that the texture changes and our hair thins as we get older!