Monday, June 27, 2011

Beards On Vacation--Get Growing!

Flip flops instead of shoes, tan legs instead of pantyhose, T-shirts instead of business suits...all signs of summer vacation. But, at Believe, we know of one more: Beards! Throwing off the tyranny of daily shaving, more and more men are choosing to grow beards and summer vacation is the perfect time to get growing.
Here's a few tips to get your beard off to a good start:
  • Make a commitment: Just like anything worth doing—like running or learning a new language—growing facial hair takes a while and you should commit to a certain time period to see it through. Don't quit in the middle and the results could be great!
  • Seeing is believing: You should at least try to grow a beard once in your lifetime. Until you do, you'll never know if you suddenly sprout a full red beard (though you are a blond) or if it will come in silver (so distinguished) or if you have bald patches on either side of your chin just where your dad did. You can't fight genetics, but how do you know that your great-great-great granddad wasn't Blackbeard (whose luxuriant facial hair—into which he wove lighted sparklers—made the ladies swoon and the men quake in fear)?
  • Tell everyone else to put a cork in it: Make a pact with your wife, kids and friends that you want to try to grow this beard and that, for awhile, you will look like a beach bum. Ask that they hold their opinions until the growing season is complete. (Your opinion is the one that counts in the end anyway.)
  • Prepare to be a little uncomfortable: Yes, yes, as your beard grows in, it will be itchy, but let it grow for six weeks—no cheating. Don't trim it, shape it, or cut it during this time. Just let Nature takes it's course (and try to look like you are deeply pondering the problems of the universe while scratching your beard.) Wash it with gentle shampoo, like AESTELANCE  G  and condition it with IDEN TREATMENT. A little extra moisturizer like ZUM BODY(in assorted scents) rubbed into the skin beneath your beard will also lessen the discomfort.
  • Let it grow, let it grow, let it grow: Even if you have only a goatee or a luxuriant mustache in mind for the finished product, why not let everything grow so you will have more hair with which to decide how you want it styled in the end? You can always cut hair off, but it takes a while to grow back.
  • Get it professionally trimmed: Make an appointment and come into Believe for us to professionally shape your beard. In the trade, this is called “designing a neckline.” Usually where the beard grows to its upper limit on your cheek is best left natural. Our trained stylists will then take into account your jawline, the measurement from your sideburns to the proper section of your neck, your ear placement in correlation to your jaw—many things that will make your beard look natural, clean and neat. (This is not a job for amateurs! Come let us teach you how to trim your beard properly or visit us at Believe every time you need a trim and enjoy a little pampering. You deserve it.)
  • Put down the dye: Here is the problem with do-it-yourself beard dyeing—the final result looks like you are wearing a fake beard. Products like “Just For Men” dye your beard (and usually parts of your neck, ears and bathroom counter) one flat shade making it appear much darker than your hair and looks as unnatural as if you had dunked your chin in shoe polish. If you truly can't stand the grey, come on in to Believe. We are experts at multi-tonal dyeing and can help hide the grey in a way that won't scream out “I dye my beard!”
  • Don't be hasty: Put off the decision to ditch the beard until after your “neckline design” appointment at Believe. If you then decide to shave it off (or leave a soul patch/imperial or a luscious mustache) we can do it for you. Trust us; Our sharp scissors, professional handling of a beard trimmer and follow-up skin care will save you from lots of bumps cuts and ingrown hairs.

From Abe Lincoln to Jerry Garcia and Jim Morrison to Sigmund Freud, famous men have been almost as celebrated for the facial hair as for their deeds. Should you decide to join such renown company (and agree with an anonymous ancient Greek who said, “There are two kinds of people in this world that go around beardless—boys and women—and I am neither one,” call us at Believe to make an appointment for that shaping and put down the razor!

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Saving Your Skin From The Sun

Though we all love to look tan (somehow it even makes us think we look skinnier) not much could be worse for us than laying out soaking up the sun. The ultraviolet A & B rays (called UVA and UVB) are what damage your skin and lead to wrinkles, brown spots, sun damage and, all too often, skin cancer. A tan is just your body's way of trying to shield itself from those harmful rays.
Tanning booths aren't any better even though they advertise that they only use harmless UVA rays. True, UVA rays take longer to cause harm, but in the end, they cause damage anyway as they go deeper into the skin than UVB rays.
You could be in greater danger if you have certain risk factors for skin cancer, like:
  • You have light eyes or fair skin or blonde or red hair.
  • You have had serious sunburns or sunburn easily.
  • You played outside a lot as a child or laid outside to get tan or used tanning beds as a teenager.
  • You have lots of moles, freckles or birthmarks.
  • You have a family history of skin cancers.
How to avoid skin cancer?
Avoid the sun--especially from 11 am -3 pm. If you can't, wear clothes made from tight-woven fabric with long sleeves and wear a wide-brimmed hat.

Stay in the shade (and remember up to 80% of the sun's rays go through clouds and can penetrate water up to one foot below the surface. The rays also reflect off water, snow and white sand.)

Wear wrap-around sunglasses that are rated to block at least 99% of UVA sunlight.

Use sunscreen rated 15 SPF or above. Apply a half an hour before going out in the sun and reapply often--especially if you are sweating or swimming.

Check yourself monthly for signs of skin cancer and alert your doctor to any new marks or changes.

So, now that you are up on how to protect yourself from skin cancer what can you do to get that beloved golden glow? Stop by Believe and pick up one of the hottest products around (even featured on The Today Show) Dr. Dennis Gross Glow Pads.

What Is It? An anti-aging self tanner in the form of a single step pre-soaked towelette containing Active Vitamin D, Microencapsulated DHA and Soy Proteins that delivers color deep into skin to prevent fading through surface exfoliation. Alpha and Beta Hydroxy Acids exfoliate, tighten pores, eliminate blackheads and help fade existing sunspots for an even, streak-free glow.

Who Is It For? Anybody who wants professional results at home to transform dull texture & tone into radiant, glowing skin better than Mother Nature herself reducing the need for foundation and concealer.

Why Is It Different? An Alpha Beta Glow Pad is the only anti-aging, exfoliating sunless tanner that contains active Vitamin D (the sun vitamin) to provide smoother, healthier skin and natural radiance year-round. Microencapsulated DHA and Soy Protein deliver color deep into skin to prevent fading through surface exfoliation. Provides odorless, streak-free application & long lasting customized color. Prepared and packaged for convenient and easy use.

How Do I Use It? Apply evenly to face and body AM or PM. Increase the number of repetitions to achieve a deeper glow. Wash hands immediately after use.

There you have it--a gorgeous golden tone with all the benefits of a tan with none of the risks. Stop by Believe and get your glow on.

Here's to a healthy summer!

Monday, June 13, 2011

Does Your Hair Have The Humidity Blues?

We haven't even yet hit the dog days of summer and already it feels like stepping into your shower when you walk out your front door.
 The bad news is The Farmer's Almanac predicts a hot, wet summer for our area, full of thunderstorms and high temperatures. The good news is that we at Believe have some tips to help keep the humidity from wrecking havoc with your hair.
When dampness is in the air, hair suffers in three ways: It gets frizzy, flat, or so big you look like a 1940's country music star.
As a general tip, keep your hair moisturized and in good condition. Use a deep conditioner like Agadir Masque once or twice a week, halfway down the length of your hair to its ends. Towel dry it (by blotting, not rubbing)—retiring your hair dryer for the season if possible. Ditto with your straightening iron. The heat from both can damage your hair and make your problems worse. If you have to use a hair dryer, use the diffuser. And, in the sun, wear a ventilated hat. Letting the sun bleach your hair (and make leather of your skin) went out with the Gidget movies.
To deal with the frizz, use a small amount of a silicon-based smoother like Chromastics Tri Organic Extreme just on the frizzy areas. Don't overdo or you risk making your hair look greasy. An amount about the size of a pea is about right. Rub your hands together to emulsify the product and then lightly apply to hair. During the day, make your favorite hand lotion do double duty. Moisturize your hands with it and then rub your hands lightly over any frizz that springs up. (Your hair will smell good, too.)
If your hair goes flat, make sure you are using a shampoo like AESTELANCE G that doesn't leave a heavy residue (such residue gets even weightier when combined with the moisture in the air on a humid day.) You might also want to try a spray-on voluminizer like Chromastics Tri Organic Spray Gel (spray it on your roots while you hair is damp). For a styling product, use AESTELANCE Volume for a light hold and use a flexible hold spray like Scruples White Tea Embrace to finish the style. Other tricks include gentle teasing of the roots (done with a comb) to add volume, and spraying hairspray on the roots at lunchtime, then holding the hair straight up with a brush till the spray dries. A quick gentle brushing and voila—instant volume!
This YouTube video shows the effects of humidity on hair: Your hair shafts actually poof up enough that you might resemble your neighbor's poodle. If that's the case, you may have to admit you can't fight Mother Nature. Pull your hair back in a classic chignon for the office, a sexy tight top knot (allow a few tendrils to curl down the back of your neck) for a dinner out, and horsetail braids and side-swept ponytails are perfect for a weekend shopping or a day at the beach.
We at Believe are here to help, of course. Whether it's recommending products, giving you a great layered cut to help fight the Flathead Syndrome or teaching you the latest braids--come by and share a refreshing iced coffee or tea and let us help you win the battle against humid hair. We look forward to seeing you soon.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Summer Hairstyles 2011

Having survived that Memorial Day barbeque (working off that corn on the cob and potato salad by spending a little more time on the treadmill), you are more than ready for summer. You put your winter woolies in mothballs, tried on that bathing suit and dug out your favorite flip-flops, but what about your hair? With no more winter hat to hide a bad hair day, what to do with your mane? Bring it to Believe for this year's hottest cuts:

The Bob

Take a page from the Roaring Twenties and try this never-out-of-fashion do. With strong outlines marrying curves and sharp lines, this cut is flattering to all types of faces and particularly works well for women “of a certain age.” You can go asymmetrical with the back shorter that the front and add layers if you like, for volume. Sleek and shiny is the order of the day and this clean cut will have you dancing the night away with never a hair out of place.

The Pixie

Remember fighting against this very haircut when you were five and you got dragged to the salon for a Pixie cut? Well, as in many things, mother knew best. If you have small features or a heart-shaped face or can't stand dealing with your hair over the busy summer, this is the cut for you. Wispy bangs accent the eyes, short sideburns to frame your face, this is truly the wash-and-wear wonder cut for the summer.

The Wave

It's possible Mother Nature gifted you with natural waves—if so, rejoice. Just flip your hair over, spritz if with CHROMASTICS Spray Gel or AESTELANCE alcohol-free Voluminizer, give it a scrunch and off you go. For the rest of us, a short stint with a curling iron and some spray that's not afraid of the humidity, like IDEN Finish Spray and you, too, can have mermaid waves.

The Fringe

We used to call them bangs—but today's hippest hairstyles are showing off “fringes”. From strong lines marching straight across your brow, to short, wispy, spiky, long, flip or those with choppy edges, fringes draw attention to those gorgeous eyes of yours and can even mask a few of those pesky forehead lines.

The Braid

With the hot weather upon us and The Farmer's Almanac promising us a very rainy summer, long hair might seem to be more of a pain, than a pleasure. No need to chop your locks to control frizz and fly-away. Go for a braid. Down your back, off to the side or coiled on top, braids take you from pool party to premiere and can be jazzed up with jewels, feathers and meaning to a woman's hair being called her “crowning glory.”

Stop by Believe to discuss your new do. We'll help you figure out which cut will flatter your face and match your unique style. We'll even teach you to braid! And while you're here, pick up a supply of products made with Sunflower Seed Oil, a natural sunscreen,  to help keep your locks from getting sun damage. We, at Believe are happy to help make this summer easy, breezy and fun.