Discover how you too can radiate from the inside out this summer, with answers to this season’s most asked beauty questions.
I have my legs and bikini line professionally waxed, but suffer from painful and unsightly ingrown hairs what can I do about this?
“Most people think exfoliating is the way to get rid of ingrown hairs, but it’s important to realise that a physical scrub won’t do the job,” explains beauty therapist Dee Davies, owner of the Clear Skin Clinic in Double Bay, Sydney. “What’s needed is a scrub and body lotion containing AHAs (Alpha Hydroxy Acids), which work to draw out the hair. MD Formulations Face & Body Scrub, $85, and Environ Alpha Hydroxy Derma-Lac Lotion, $79, both work really well.” Ingrown hair creams such as Veet Anti Ingrown Hair Cream, $14.95, also help, as they contain AHAs, often with soothing and anti-bacterial ingredients, which help calm and prevent infection.
My naturally blonde hair turned a weird shade of green from swimming in the pool last summer. How can I prevent this?
“Chlorine and blonde hair have an unhappy relationship,” explains Emiliano Vitale, creative director of é salon in Wahroonga, Sydney. “Because blonde hair is more porous than dark hair, chlorine is absorbed into the hair more easily, turning it a green colour. If your hair turns green, invest in a clarifying shampoo to help detoxify the chlorine from it. Try Kiehl’s All-Sport Swimmer’s Cleansing Rinse for Hair and Body, $34. Clarifying shampoos contain chelating agents that are ideal for removing build-up from of styling products, salt water and chlorine. To prevent your hair from turning green, invest in a product that will protect the hair, such as Kérastase Soleil Gelée Aqua-Proof, $36.50, which coats the hair so chlorine cannot penetrate the hair shaft.” Other preventative measures include wearing a swimming cap and rinsing with water straight after swimming, and shampooing as soon as possible after your dip.
The humidity makes my curly hair frizzy and unmanageable is there a solution?
“When you condition your hair, don’t rinse off the conditioner completely, but leave a little in the hair,” suggests Vitale. “This will coat the cuticle, weighing the hair down slightly and preventing dreaded frizz.” Apply an anti-frizz styling product for control and anti-static. This helps reduce the effects of humidity and keeps the hair well hydrated. Try Tigi Catwalk Curls Rock Curl Amplifier, $27.95, for curly hair, or for fine, flyaway hair try Redken Outshine 01 Anti-Frizz Polishing Milk, $27.
I always wear an SPF30+ sunscreen, but after two weeks on the beach with the kids in January I tan. I hate the peeling/blotchy look as it begins to fade though, any suggestions?
“Your tan only lasts as long as the layers of skin last,” says Kim Oliver, educator for St. Tropez. “The key to stopping your skin from looking blotchy from a fading tan whether natural or fake is regular exfoliation and moisturisation. To even out a blotchy tan you can use an extender product that safely tans the skin to maintain an even colour. Try Garnier Ambre Solaire After Sun Hydrating Tan Extender, $12.99 or St. Tropez Ultimate Tan Intensifier, $39.95.
My toenails are yellow after wearing dark-coloured polish. Is there a quick way to get rid of this?
“You can remove stains from nails by giving them a light buff,” says Karon McKendrick-Taylor, educator and trainer for OPI. “You could also try soaking your nails in diluted lemon juice or a whitening toothpaste to remove excess staining. Always apply base coat prior to bright coloured nail polish as this will protect the nail from absorbing the colour which causes nails to turn yellow, and avoid 'quick dry' nail shades in dark colours”. Another option is Scholl Perfect Nails Discoloured Nail Treatment, $19.95. This three-step system is designed to instantly whiten and brighten yellow nails (the brightener can also be used as base coat). The first step is to file the nails. For the second step, you apply the conditioning gel, and lastly, you apply the nail brightener.
What’s a good product to protect my hair and scalp from the sun?
“L’Oréal Professionnel Série Expert Solar Sublime Protection Spray, $22.95, will protect the hair from fading and damage caused by UV rays,” says hairdresser Sandy Chong, creative director at Suki hair salon in Paddington, Sydney. “It will give some protection for the scalp, but if you have very fine hair a full sun block designed especially for the skin is recommended.”
What’s the best way to deal with a self-tan disaster?
“If you’re tanning at home, you can fix mistakes immediately by using a self-tan remover such as St. Tropez Self-Tan Remover, $28.95,” says Oliver. This product removes tan from the hands and feet, but only works immediately, not once the tan has developed. Use a tinted self tanner so you can see where you have tanned to prevent mistakes, and also make sure you exfoliate all over and use a moisturiser on dry areas such as feet, hands, hairline, elbows and front and back of knees, prior to tanning. “If you do end up with an uneven tan you can exfoliate regularly to speed up the fading process”, says Oliver.
I love to swim regularly in summer but the water dries out my skin. What’s the best way to combat this?
“Increase your intake of omega-3 fatty acids,” suggests dermatologist Dr Howard Murad, creator of Murad skincare. “Internal hydration results in external hydration, so be sure to drink plenty of water, too. Ensure to rinse your skin with fresh, non-chlorinated water immediately after swimming and pat skin dry with a towel, rather than rubbing to avoid additional irritation.”
Use of a good body lotion will also help greatly. Try Murad Body Firming Cream, $50, or Dermalogica UltraRich Body Cream, $77.50.
I’m always wearing a hat and sunscreen, but the sun still triggers uneven pigmentation on my face. How can I avoid this?
“The sun turns on melanocytes (cells that produce pigment) which cause pigmentation,” explains Davies. “To avoid pigmentation you must ensure the sunscreen you are using acts as a physical block one that contains zinc or titanium dioxide. Dermalogica Sheer Tint Moisture SPF15, $72, or HissyFit Saving Face Moisturising Tinted Sunscreen SPF 30+, $55, tends to provide an even better block.”
Combine this with using a good vitamin C product during the day and one containing vitamin A at night. Try: Environ Intensive C-Boost, $98, and Environ AVST 1, $75.
My lips tend to peel in summer, what’s the best remedy?
“Use a lip scrub to buff away dryness before applying a balm, gloss or lipstick,” advises Simone Wyndham, creator of Shizen, which specialises in all-natural lip products. Try Shizen Lip Scrub Sugar, $24.95.
I feel particularly body conscious at this time of the year. Are there any products to help firm my body?
There are some good firming body lotions now available. Nivea Body My Silhouette, $11.90, contains two proven ingredients white tea to stimulate the breakdown of fat, and anise extract which boosts cell metabolism and stimulates collagen to make the connective tissue firmer. Gatineau Paris Vital Feeling Body Sculpt Perfect, $90, uses a special liposculpt complex with red algae, calcium, rice extract and caffeine. Use these twice a day on a regular basis and you should see some results.