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’Tis the season for fug sweaters, awkward hometown encounters with high school chums, and office-party faux pas.
When all else fails, we can at least make sure our makeup looks good.
Done. In today’s video, Birchbox’s brilliant Mollie Chen shows us a few ways to touch up and brighten our face postwork, preparty — all in less than five minutes. From her favorite eyeliners and gloss to why it’s better to wear a brightening powder than a translucent one, Chen knows her stuff.
While we had the Birchbox ladies in our office, we also asked co-founder Katia Beauchamp (whose hair always looks amazing) to show us how to create a cool cocktail party-ready updo. All it takes is a few minutes, dry shampoo, some pins, and elastic.
You know, the same thing we’ll need around our waistline after tomorrow.
To subscribe to Birchbox or purchase any of the products mentioned in the video, go to birchbox.com. For more beauty tips, watch our videos on how to do the perfect cat eye and the right way to tweeze your brows.
High school prom: CK One. Trip to Italy: au naturel. Major lapse in judgment: Axe.
Since a smell can bring back memories more vividly than pictures, why leave it to chance? In today’s video, Steven Gontarski of Los Angeles-based perfume store Lucky Scent, has tips for finding your perfect fragrance — from where and how to spray it to how to decide what’s you.
If you’re like us, you’ll want to start spritzing away. Nose around Lucky Scent’s site — which carries tons of hard-to-find brands — and choose a few to try (samples are just $3-$5).
It’s about more than just common scents.
To shop and order samples, go to luckyscent.com. Since Gontarski talks about perfumes so eloquently, we asked him to tell us about his favorite seven fragrances (we’re now hooked on the Peau de Peche and At the Beach 1966).
On a scale of handyman aptitude, we’re closer to Tim “The Tool Man” Taylor (Super Gluing his fingers together) than Bob Vila.
But we still know our way around nuts and bolts, thanks to Home from the Hardware Store, a new book with foolproof instructions for DIY home decor — from chandeliers to table runners — made with items you can find at your local Home Depot or Ace.
In today’s videos, Brooklyn-based co-author Stephen Antonson showed us two projects: a ridiculously simple candelabra made of inexpensive plumbing parts (above) and how to turn tubes into modern, round shelving units. The former takes literally five minutes; the latter, maybe an hour.
No Al Borland required.
To buy a copy of Home from the Hardware Store, go to amazon.com.
When Stephen Antonson, co-author of Home from the Hardware Store, told us we’d need a saw to make modern tube shelves, we thought two things: (1) There goes a finger and (2) Who has a saw? The good news: The production was incredibly easy (no ER visits to report), and a handsaw is around $15 at your local hardware store.
“Did you just get back from vacation?”
Nope (we wish). Instead, we had a lesson in DIY spray tanning from bronzing expert Meredith Fish, founder of Brownberry in Manhattan. In today’s videos, she has tips for doing your face (above) and body — including how to avoid dreaded streaks on hands and feet.
Fish recommends using an alcohol-free tanner — and always starting with a lighter shade and testing it on a small patch of unseen skin beforehand. Make a mistake? Don’t worry: She also shows us her tried-and-true method for getting rid of unwanted splotches.
Follow her instructions and you’ll go from pasty to bronzed in just a few hours.
Much faster and cheaper than a trip to Brazil.
For more information on Brownberry, go to brownberrynyc.com.
We’ve all seen it: Perfectly tan people wearing abnormally long sleeves — even in summer — to cover up streaky, orange hands. Thankfully, there’s a better way. In this video, bronzing expert Meredith Fish reveals her tried-and-true method for getting rid of self-tanner mistakes.
Want more tips? Check out our videos on DIY spray tanning for your face and body. For more information on Meredith Fish, go to brownberrynyc.com.
If you’ve been through a rough winter, it’s likely your legs, arms, stomach, and back haven’t seen the light of day for ages. Don’t be self-conscious to show skin again: Banish the pale with a DIY spray tan. In this video, bronzing expert Meredith Fish explains the best way to give yourself a glow.
Want more tips? Check out our videos on DIY spray tanning your face and how to remove it if you make a mistake. For more information on Meredith Fish, go to brownberrynyc.com.
Pretty, natural-looking curls — not ringlets — were the look at Behnaz Sarafpour’s fall/winter 2011 show. In this video, Bumble and Bumble stylist Laurent Philippon demonstrates his technique for getting the hairstyle just right.
For more beauty tips, watch our backstage videos on hair and makeup at Marc Jacobs and nails at Alexander Wang.
Man, this hairstyle is tight. No, literally: Mononymous Redken stylist Guido slicked models’ locks back into taut, dominatrix-inspired ponytails for the fall/winter Marc Jacobs show on Monday. In this video, he describes the process and why he likes the look.
For more beauty tips, watch our backstage videos on makeup at Marc Jacobs, hair at Behnaz Sarafpour, and nails at Alexander Wang.
Nana, who’s been wearing the same Avon blush since 1963, may not seem like the most fashion-forward lady. But designer Marc Jacobs and makeup artist François Nars beg to differ. In this video, Nars talks us through Jacobs’s granny-inspired fall/winter 2011 look.
For more beauty tips, watch our backstage videos on hair at Marc Jacobs, hair at Behnaz Sarafpour, and nails at Alexander Wang.
We’re not going to name names, but we know someone — definitely not one of our editors — who doesn’t wash her sweaters. (“Why dry clean when you can Febreze?”)
Don’t be That Girl. Clean knits yourself (even cashmere!) with help from Lindsey Wieber Boyd, co-founder of The Laundress. In today’s video, she demystifies the sweater-washing process, from removing pills and stains to proper drying.
Want to keep washing? Check out our video on cleaning a coat in the washing machine. Seriously. To prove how doable it is, Wieber Boyd demonstrated on her vintage Chanel jacket. (It’s wool, but the procedure also works for down.)
Now a certain someone — no one you know — won’t have to keep her arms down on the subway.
For more information or to buy the products mentioned in the videos, go to thelaundress.com. Enter DCVIDEO11 at checkout for 15 percent off (good through January 19). For more laundry tricks, watch our tutorials on cleaning silk in the machine and washing delicates.
You wear your coat every day during winter. Why not wash it once in a while? In this video, The Laundress co-founder Lindsey Wieber Boyd demonstrates the simple way to clean outerwear at home using her gorgeous, vintage Chanel coat.
For more information or to buy the products mentioned in the video, go to thelaundress.com. Enter DCVIDEO11 at checkout for 15 percent off (good through January 19). For more laundry tricks, watch our tutorials on cleaning silk in the machine and washing delicates.
Somehow, in just five days, your New Year’s resolution devolved from work out every day to do leg lifts during Hoarders commercials.
Don’t give up. Dr. Frank Lipman, the integrative doc behind NYC’s Eleven Eleven Wellness Center, showed us how easy it is to get back — and stay — on track in these exclusive new how-to videos.
1. Go healthy at the grocery store (above). 2. Restore overall balance with a tennis ball foot massage. 3. Banish the blues with a restorative yoga pose. 4. De-stress with guided meditation.
And if you really want to get a leg up, try Lipman’s two-week detox program, Remove. No, seriously. Even our staff’s resident “cleanses are for crazy people” skeptic is a believer, mainly because you can have two meals a day of your choosing — plus the provided shakes and vitamins.
Which you can ingest from the convenience of your sofa.
Remove, available online at elevenelevenwellness.com, $199. Want more? Check out the amazing playlist Lipman made us for optimum relaxation.
Special thanks: Jefferson Market, NYC
So the Play Tennis Every Week Resolution of 2010 didn’t pan out. Put those lonely balls to good use with a DIY foot massage that will improve your flexibility and balance in just two minutes. It’s so discreet you can do it under your desk at work. No one will be the wiser.
Want more? Check out our videos involving a restorative yoga pose, guided meditation, and healthy grocery shopping tips. For information about Dr. Frank Lipman, go to elevenelevenwellness.com.
When we were told a simple yoga pose could give us an instant happiness/energy boost, we signed up immediately (heck, why not?). Now it’s our go-to when we need a little lift (especially when we get home from work). All it takes is a few towels and a flat surface.
Want more? Check out our videos involving a DIY tennis ball foot massage, guided meditation, and healthy grocery shopping tips. For information about Dr. Frank Lipman, go to elevenelevenwellness.com.
Sometimes you just need a breather. Get the most out of it through guided meditation, as directed by Dr. Frank Lipman (even his accent is soothing). We recommend you watch our video through once to get the idea, and then play it again with your eyes closed. Just listen to get the full benefit.
Want more? Check out our videos involving a DIY tennis ball foot massage, an energizing yoga pose, and healthy grocery shopping tips. For information about Dr. Frank Lipman, go to elevenelevenwellness.com.
You perfected messy side buns, around-the-head braids, and sleek chignons. Then you got a haircut and could barely muster a ponytail.
Don’t fret. In today’s video, hair genius Adrienne Saczko of The Drawing Room New York demos a beautiful, easy updo for chin-to-shoulder-length locks. All you need is a curling iron (or hot rollers, if that’s easier), hairspray, bobby pins, and your own two hands.
Once you get the style down, feel free to tighten with more pins (or loosen with fewer) and adorn it with your own accessories.
Preferably not mistletoe.
Want more ideas? Check out our gallery of nine easy holiday hairdos. For more information on The Drawing Room New York, go to thedrawingroomny.com.
You know what could really spoil your NYE celebration? Accidentally hitting someone in the face with the cork as you open a bottle of bubbly.
Don’t spend your first hours of 2011 in an ER. Instead, watch our video tutorial starring Patrick Watson, owner of Brooklyn Wine Exchange in New York. We estimate he’s popped at least 10,000 corks in his lifetime.
And we’ll drink to that. Happy New Year!
For more imbibing tips and tricks, watch our videos on drinking wine like a pro, decanting it, and opening it without getting cork in the bottle.
Photo: E_calamar / Flickr
It’s inevitable: You’re going to a holiday party and a zit as big as a tree ornament pops up. Oh, an ex you haven’t seen in five years will be there? Naturally.
We’ve got you covered. In today’s video, makeup artist Merrell Smith of Space NK shows you her simple technique for concealing blemishes. As a bonus she also demonstrates how to get rid of pesky dark areas around the eyes.
Smith’s tips are now an indispensable part of our daily routine. Our only regret is that we didn’t have these videos fifteen years ago.
For more information on Smith, go to merrellsmith.com. Products used in the video include Laura Mercier Secret Camouflage (concealer) and a concealer brush. For store locations, go to spacenk.com.
Tune in tonight for the thrilling finale of Top Chef: Just Desserts as editor-at-large Dannielle Kyrillos and fellow judges proclaim a winner. And check out these holiday recipes from dessert masters like TCJD contestants Eric Wolitzky and Zac Young.
We’re not sure why people think it’s okay to say, “Aw, you look tired.” They may as well say, “Wow, you look like crap.” Gee, thanks.
Keep awkward comments at bay by learning to cover up those sleep-deprived dead ringers: dark under-eye circles. Makeup artist Merrell Smith shows you her technique in this video.
Find out more about Smith online at merrellsmith.com. Products used in the video include By Terry Touche Veloutee (under-eye concealer) and Laura Mercier Eye Basics (eye primer). For store locations, go to spacenk.com.
We know what you’re thinking: Couldn’t we have taught you to do a beehive hairstyle before Halloween?
Sorry, Amy Winehouse wannabes, our version isn’t that extreme — it’s actually cute enough to wear every day (without worrying there might be critters living inside). To show us how, we enlisted the brilliant Michael Angelo from Wonderland Beauty Parlor in Manhattan.
Still think we’re crazy? Then you’re calling bee fans Miuccia Prada, Vera Wang, Scarlett Johansson, and Beyoncé loco, too. Let’s just say we’re proud to be part of that hive mentality.
Michael Angelo’s Wonderland Beauty Parlor, 418 West 13th Street, between Ninth Avenue and Washington Street (212-524-2800 or wonderlandbeautyparlor.com).
Photo: Getty Images