This is it…the secret vault of mommy makeovers. I’ve unknowingly been working on this for years, sporadically, and with research in the form of frumpy, fried phone calls (sometimes tears) and over coffee with my yaya sisterhood of girlfriends.
In some of my most vulnerable, under slept, sleepy eyed, maternity clothes don’t fit…nor do any in my closet, roots grown out, pasty skin that hasn’t seen the sun in months (amplifying stretch marks and veins), splotchy, discolored skin ON MY FACE that appeared just as the mysterious line on my tummy went away, ahhhhh, and in my “who’s body is this anyway” moments, I’ve been rescued by my girlfriends.
And with my self-esteem dragging and my hormones off the charts, how thankful I was to have friends by my side!
Note to readers (aka my MHM siterhood): some of these beauty tips are well-kept family secrets and have not been shared publicly in generations – or ever. I share only in an attempt to help my fellow sisters in their own struggle to feel like the woman they were…and will be again…once the hormones fade and the self-esteem finds it way back to where it rightfully should be!
Use them wisely
Lori’s Luscious Lips – With a fabulous gift of gloss, this girlfriend gave me the key to a fast, fresh look. Choose a color in your tones, a viscosity that fits your fancy, and something with a dash of sparkle. Bargain shop and keep them in your car, purse and jacket pocket. $1 Mini Gloss, Sally Beauty Supply. $7.50ish for a larger sparkle gloss, Victoria Secret or Bath & Body Works.
Amanda’s Sun Kissed Skin – It’s important to avoid the sun’s harmful rays, and with the newest findings on the dangers of tanning beds, sunless tan lotion is looking better and better. Amanda prefers the one-application towelettes, but in my experience, lotions not only last longer but also don’t turn my hands orange. Important tips: Exfoliate and shave first; dry off completely; apply thick lotion to hands, bottoms of feet, and small amounts to knees and elbows before application. Wash hands immediately following application, but reapply some regular lotion and blend into wrists (to avoid the distinct line of tanned arms and washed hands, which makes for a good laugh.) $9.99 L’Oreal Sublime Bronze Self-Tanning.
Jody’s Fresh Do – Jody and I have teamed up in the past to touch up our highlights for spring. Kits with caps work well for an all over highlight, but when time is valuable, a few foils work too (and cost a bit less.) You can use regular aluminum foil for this! Add golden touches to the areas you prefer by choosing small strands (larger for a dramatic look.) Apply the color to the strands of hair and fold into the foil to keep the bleach away from the rest of your hair. Follow directions carefully and research the best color for your hair. Approximately $13, L’Oreal Frost & Design Kit (one kit will foil two or more friends – depending on the number of foils used.) Even grocery stores carry it!
Jordyn’s Gorgeous Eyes – After a long night of feedings, monsters in the closet, and other mommy nightshift duties, hide your tired eyes with these simple tips…add a little sparkle to your eye lid near the lash line and on the inside corner: $ 17 Urban Decay Eye shadow (try Midnight Cowgirl, Sephora. Finish with waterproof mascara – use with an eyelash curler for volume: $6 Colossal Volum’ Express by Maybelline.
Debbie Lynn’s Flawless Skin – Choosing a good foundation and powder can help hide blemished and discolored skin, but before you apply your makeup, try this cream, which is surprisingly effective on uneven pigment caused by changing hormones: $3.99 Palmer’s Skin Success Eventone Fade Cream, Walgreens.
Gloria’s Curves – A little extra baby weight can be quickly managed with the use of a body shaper. There are a variety of styles to boost, tuck, and squeeze all the right parts…perfect for form fitting dresses. Prices range from $20 on up.
Melissa’s Fashion – It doesn’t have to cost a lot to look fabulous. Mix, match and bargain hunt! You can even organize a clothing swap with several friends for some freebies. Determine a clothing budget based on price-per-wear. A pricey pair of jeans may be only $.50 per wear, while a mid-priced, trendy top may be several dollars per wear if it goes out of style quickly. It feels great to have clothes that fit well and look great…especially if it doesn’t break the bank.
Kristen’s Flaire – An outfit can be reworn several times and look completely different with the right flare. Kristen recommends adding a large belt to an oversized shirt, coordinating a patterned scarf with an otherwise ordinary outfit or adding a layer to change the look. She finds amazing jewelry on the cheap and believes that at least one item should speak loudly. $5 earrings and bargain jewelry, Forever 21.
Bonnie’s Polished Look – For a sophisticated, together look (even when it’s anything but, ha!) add a quick final touch. Nail polish is a good way to freshen up for a special event and can be accomplished quickly. Choose a couple of pretty colors and keep them on hand. Travel with a bon bon and you can just touch-up as it chips and wears away. Choose a shimmering color for summer, and try to think outside the box and select something bold to brighten your look. $1 (or under) Bon Bons, Wal-Mart.
Cheryl’s Bright Smile – A sunshiny smile is a comforting gift to others, and it feels good to know you’re smile is bright. Bleaching systems can be costly – and even painful – but there are ways to whiten your teeth at home. Try a bit of salt and baking soda on a toothbrush. Avoid the gums, as the abrasiveness can cause them to erode. A swish with hydrogen peroxide can also whiten, but be careful…you don’t want to wash away your good bacteria or you just might end up with a case of black hairy tongue – can we say moderation? Yikes! $ Pennies!
“Of all the secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood the most divine was humor.” ~Rebecca Wells, Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood