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Planning An Intimate Wedding

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Remember when Katy Perry married Russell Brand in 2010? Do you remember how Katy, resplendent in an Elie Saab Haute couture down and $7,000 Casadei heels, and husband to be, Russell, rode in to the ceremony at Rajastahan, India’s Aman-i-Khas resort on the backs of elephants, then celebrated her 26th birthday on route to their Maldives honeymoon? Ever think big weddings are overrated?

Now, calm down. Romance is a beautiful thing, and a couple is entitled to spend their wedding day however they want, and big weddings can be absolutely breathtaking, but, just in case, you don’t have the funds, or you just don’t have the energy, here are some ideas for a more intimate wedding that can be a little more expressive, if a little less impressive.

Destination Weddings
A destination wedding is a good idea if you want to keep the number of guests down, as few will be able to make the journey. The Caribbean Islands could be the setting for the wedding of your dreams. Invite family and friends to come out a few days early, to make an extended vacation out of it.

City Hall and Brunch
A City Hall wedding always has an element of the off beat to it, plus it saves a lot of stress and cash. Bring your own photographer to get a snap of the wedding kiss and wear a casual white dress to suit the occasion.

Backyard Wedding
Set up the grill and play a few rounds of badminton. Go DIY with fabrics and flowers to make your outdoor setting into own version of shabby chic.

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Food Truck Wedding
Food trucks are great ways of keeping it funky while taking care of the menu. Choose your local favorite and see if you can work with the owner of the food truck to dream up a wedding day menu.

A Potluck Meal
Why not? If your wedding is super small, get the whole family involved. Grandma can handle the desserts and your aunt can take care of the pigs in a blanket.

Consider a Low Key Venue
If people can get married at Taco Bell, you can certainly get married at the local brewery. You might even get some free karaoke in. You don’t need tons of space, so just make up for it in atmosphere. Give you and your guests a night to remember without going over the top.

Go Camping
Most campsites have park shelters that can be rented out for events, and weddings certainly qualify as events. As long as your guests don’t mind roughing it, you can have a singalong around the fire at night, and spend the next day at the beach. (You might want to make sure there’s a hotel nearby for Grandma).

Elope
Talk about intimate- why invite anyone? All you need is the two of you and someone to make it official. If running away to Vegas isn’t your idea of romance, consider Paris. Just think, with the money you save on the wedding, you’ll have plenty to spend on some great designer clothes.

Are you keeping your wedding on the down low? Let us know what your doing to make it your own. We love to hear it!

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Toned And Defined Glutes

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The perfect booty. Songs have been written in its honor, plastic surgery has been used to enhance it, dances have been created around it. Yet, for many of us, it remains beyond our reach. How can we get this thing, so elusive, yet so desirable? Women of today want that perfect butt, and, these days, they want it sculpted, shapely, and defined. Gone are the days of “turn to the side and disappear.” Women are seeking roundness, and lift, and firmness, and exercise is a step in the right direction. Read on to find out how to get toned, defined glutes.

Before You Start
Before you begin to knock yourself out in pursuit of the perfect booty, you should know, it may not be fully attainable. According to the fitness trainer, Jonathan Ross, fat cells the body deposits around the thighs and hips are less responsive to exercise than other parts, but, “Progress is still possible. It just takes a lot of i- dotting and t- crossing when it comes to nutrition and exercise. ” Here are some great exercises to help you dot the I’s and cross the t’s.

Squats
This is one of the most widely expert recommended exercises for hips, butt, and thighs. Stand with your feet parallel, a shoulder’s width apart. Lower your hips slowly, making certain your knees do not extend past your toes.

If squats get too routine, variations are almost endless. Michele Olson, Ph.D., says, “I like plie squats to really work those deep rotator muscles.” You can do these by starting with your feet more than a shoulder’s width apart and your feet turned out. Squat, keeping knees over the ankles and press down on feet, squeezing glutes, until you return to a standing position.

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Lunges
Start with feet parallel, a hip’s distance from one another and take a big step backward or forward, lower your body slowly, bending both knees, no further than 90 degrees, making sure your front knee remains aligned over your front ankle. Bring your feet together and repeat.

Bridges
This is a great exercise for the lower back as well as the gluteus. Just lie on your back with your knees bent and feet planted on the floor, a hip’s width apart. Peel your spine off the floor slowly, starting at the bottom, moving one vertebra at a time, tightening the backs of the thighs and glutes until your body forms a diagonal line from your knees to your shoulder. Return to the starting position, one vertebra at a time.

Step Ups
You’ll need a weight bench or step for this one. Whichever you choose, step one foot on top and push through flute and top of leg, using your muscles to lift the bottom leg and tap the bench. Lower and repeat using the same leg.

Hip/Leg Extensions
Hip/ leg extensions involve reaching your leg behind your body to work your gluteus. Extend your leg behind your body using a carefully controlled motion and keep the core stable. Repeat 15 times, for three sets, and then switch legs.

Are you exercising your gluteus this summer? Let us know what you’re doing to get that shapely bod!

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Try These Hair Colors Before Summer Ends

best friends happy about their hair colour

Summer is a great time to dye your hair. Why? Because summer is bucket list time, time to cross off all those things you want to do before you kick it, and you know dying your hair every color under the sun takes up several places on that list. So, what’s it going to be this year, hologram pink? Gray matter? Violet hour? If you still haven’t made up your mind, here are some of the hottest color picks by celebrity hair stylists this season, but you better act quickly, summer won’t last long, and your roots are showing!

Neutral Blonde
If you’ve seen Nicole Kidman lately, you may notice that her skin tone is noticeably close to her hair color. That’s the neutral or nude blonde effect at work. It’s good for a subtle look, keeping the fun in blonde without the brassiness. Works great with peach-toned makeup for a natural radiance.

Cool Blonde
Cool blonde is a great way to play up those highlights and undertones. Says colorist Gion Vincent, “A lot of the new words you will be hearing when it comes to blonde this season are creamy ginger, creamy platinum ash, and smoke taupe.” Cool blonde is also a great way for loyal brunettes to get in on the blonde action.

Honey Blonde
Oh, honey. If you want to get an idea of what honey blonde looks like in action, check out Beyonce. Color consultant Tracey Cunningham says, “Baby lights weaved throughout the hair will lighten and brighten without losing dimension,” so it can handle summertime exposure to sun and chlorine like a pro. But do you really need more to recommend it thanBeyonce?

Strawberry Blond
The name alone makes you want to try this color at least once in your life. Strawberry blond is somewhat easier to wear than most traditional blondes because of its natural appearance as a highlight in most other hair colors. Says Cunningham, “The balance of red and blonde achieved through highlights and a gloss is perfect for a natural redhead of a blonde looking to experiment with a new shade of red.”

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Platinum
Always a head turner, platinum is one of the more glamorous options for blondes this summer. Just remember to stop by the pharmacy to stock up on some chlorine removing shampoo when you’re picking up the touch up formulas.

Defined Highlights
The definition may be the definition of hair color this summer. Colorist Chase Kusero says, “This season it’s about dimensional color. Really warm mixed with neutrals and a lot of reflective colors and not blended, but defined placement and definition.”

Peach
Peach is the new black this summer, or should we say the new blonde? Always a great summer color, Kusero says, “It looks especially good on bronze and sun-kissed skin, plus adds warmth to any skin tone.”

Tell us what your thinking interns of hair color this year? We want to know what dye to try before we die!

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Airlines With the Best Fashion Sense

Airhostess chasing airplane

The Cabin Crew. Even when you are most disheveled after a red-eye flight, you can count on the cabin crew to look immaculate. No matter how long and turbulent the flight, the traveler can take comfort in a smiling face, in a perfectly pressed suit, ready to deliver a fresh damp cloth or lunch tray. And perhaps, with all the headlines the airlines are making lately, it is well advised that the cabin crew be ready for an unexpected photo or a You-Tube appearance. If the landing strip is the new runway, it is important that the airlines stack up. Here are some of the airlines with the best fashion sense.

Emirates Airlines
Emirates is one example of an airline that knows the importance of a good looking crew. According to flight attendant Maria Pederson, one of the ethnically diverse crew members, “People are really impressed by the way we look. I think it makes us stand out, look professional and well put together.” Flight prep time for this group usually takes about an hour, and little wonder, as there are guidelines for the exact hat position (two fingers width above the eyebrows), the folding and tucking of the scarf, the signature red lipstick, and the grooming (hair cannot touch the shoulders). In addition, flight attendants are restricted from wearing uniforms while off duty, a big Emirates no-no.

Emirates cabin crew

Sorbis / Shutterstock.com

Singapore Airlines
The signature “Singapore Girl” uniform has barely been altered in the over 40 years of its existence. After all, what reason would there be for changing something so stylish, iconic, and instantly recognizable? The original, designed by French couture designer Pierre Balmain in 1968, is a take on the “Sarong Kebaya,” featuring the timeless colors and prints of traditional Singapore women’s wear, and a feast of pattern and colors in the friendly skies/

Air Canada Rouge
For a discount airline, these guys have cool uniforms! Check out their tight burgundy tees and gray belted slacks with the knotted print neck scarves. Sort of like “Grease” meets hipster. They also get to wear John Fluevog on their feet. Talk about low budget meets high fashion.

Thai Airways
Always stylish, always elegant, Thai Airlines uniforms give the passenger a taste of Thailand as soon as they board. While flight attendants wear the corporate purple outfits outside the plane, they change into the traditional Thai dress for the flight portion. Pardon us while we change into something a bit more comfortable? While beautiful and colorful in both versions, the passengers are in for an extra treat that may be well worth the price of the flight.

Airhostess in Uniform

Dmitry Birin / Shutterstock.com

Aeroflot
Although Russia is not always synonymous with fashion, the crisp red caps and angled neckties of the Aeroflot stewardesses may turn that around. Earning a top rating as the world’s most stylish airline from the Skyscanner flight booking website, the Aeroflot cabin crew may be the start of a fashion revolution.

Qantas
Even Miranda Kerr couldn’t resist a chance to model the Quantas collection on the runway. The new design is a study in traditional Quantas ruby red, fuschia, and French navy created by Australian designer Martin Grant. But the absolute must have in this collection? Check out the new Quantas trench coat! You’ll be signing up for the job tomorrow!

Are you a frequent flyer? What do you think of airborne fashion? Let us know your picks for best (and worst) dressed cabin crews!

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You Can Be A Happy Working Mom

Woman working with toddler

Help Wanted. The STEM (science, technology.engineering, and mathematics) field is looking for a few good women. While women today make up half the workforce, there is a noticeable dearth of ladies in the STEM fields, and of the ladies intrepid enough to venture into these more scientific pursuits, very few remain beyond a certain age. Why? They leave to become mommies. Now nobody is knocking mommyhood, it’s an admirable pursuit, and definitely not one that should be done away with anytime soon, but we need girls in STEM. In fact, we need women to have a powerful voice in all areas of influence, and that means we need more working mommies. In that spirit, here are some tips for keeping ladies productive in more than one way.

Share and Share Alike
A family who shares is a family who cares, that’s why your family needs to share the chores. If you’re going to be working eight hours a day at a job, you certainly can’t be doing more work when you come home. Assigning the kids a few daily chores will not only lighten your load, it will also teach them a lesson about the value of responsibility.

Mom working with dad and kid in background

Reach Out
If you’re looking to take some weight off your shoulders, try and form a support network with other parents in your neighborhood. That way, you can trade off on bringing the kids to school and picking them up from soccer practice.

Scale Back
Forget about FOMO. Keep it simple by doing less. If the kids have too many outside commitments, scale back on a few. According to Parent’s Magazine, two extracurricular activities are more than enough to keep kids happy. Career expert Eve Tahmincioglu says, “At the beginning of the school year, find out what school field trips are being planned and then choose maybe two that you’ll chaperone.”

Schedule “Me Time”
The only way to truly maintain for sanity is to set aside some time for yourself. Even as little as a half hour can make a big difference. You’ll find yourself feeling more balanced and less resentful about all the sacrifices you make on a daily basis. If thirty minutes seems too ambitious, try breaking it up. Take ten-minute breaks to meditate or take a quick walk around the block.

Couple spending time together

Schedule “Us Time”
Make sure to take a few nights to reconnect with your spouse. If you can’t find time for a weekly date night, there are alternatives. Tahmincioglu says, “After the kids go to sleep is a good time to spend some quality time together.” Whatever the activity, just make sure that you are doing it in a way in which the focus remains on one another.

Keep A List
Keeping a list will help you to prioritize and stay focused. Just jot down what needs to be done over the next few days, and don’t make it too demanding. Motherboard spokesmom Maureen Petrosky says, “I find lots of moms are sunk before they even get started for the day by placing too many demands on yourself. I always say at the end o the day, if we got nothing else done besides keeping everyone alive, it was a great day.”

Are you a working Mom? How do you keep everyone happy, most importantly yourself? Let us know! We need more like you out there!

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Common Causes Of Pain Below The Belly Button

Woman clutching painful tummy

You’ve always been told that you look most attractive when you smile. A pleasant facial expression is vital for inviting conversation. And here you are, trying to have fun, trying to be social and you look….totally miserable. Why? Your stomach hurts. Nothing puts a damper on a good time quite like a sharp pain in your lower abdomen. If you find abdominal pain becoming a little too familiar, you shouldn’t have to suffer. The first step to doing away with your problem is by finding out what’s behind it. Here are a few possibilities.

Digestive Pain
The most common cause of lower abdominal pain is irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) However, it is the tendency to characterize all abdominal pain as IBS which increases the likelihood of misdiagnosis. Dr John O’ Malley explains that “what’s increasingly diagnosed nowadays is inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) which can result in symptoms such as bloody diarrhea. There is also irritable bowel syndrome with constipation which can see symptoms of both diarrhea and constipation.” To help determine the cause of your pain, locate your bowel by placing your hands above your hips. O’ Malley explains,”Pain on the left might indicate large bowel problems while pain on the right could suggest issues in or around the intestine.”

Bloating
Bloating can occur when spasms cause the air in the bowel to expand. O’ Malley says this, “normally causes mild pain, while intense pain could be a result of colonic spasm and even appendicitis when acute.” Although many people try to manage bloating by cutting certain foods from their diets, O’ Malley advises against this. “You should never cut out major food groups without seeking a dietician’s advice. For example. if you have celiac disease, you might have difficulty absorbing calcium, which could result in osteoporosis, so it’s important to cut out food as and when necessary, with medical assistance.”

Woman in pain

Period Pain
Period pain occurs when the muscular wall of the womb tightens. It can be triggered by underlying medical conditions, such as fibroids, endometriosis, and pelvic inflammatory disease. Professor Claudia Estcourt advises monitoring any changes in period pain, which might be an indication of something more serious taking place. She says, “The key thing when assessing pain related to the reproductive system…is to keep tabs on any changes. For example, if you’ve never had period pain and suddenly find your periods are uncomfortable and result in an uncharacteristic pain over several months or cycles, it’s a good idea to take action. Symptoms to look out for include feeling sick, experiencing constipation and diarrhea, weight loss, unusual pain during menstruation, and bleeding during or after sex. Vaginal discharge may be an indicator of something more serious, as can severe pain in the ovaries, or pain which makes penetrative sex inordinately uncomfortable.

Painful Sex
Sharp, dull, or constant pain may be an indication of a possible infection in the fallopian tubes or uterus. Estcort says, “Pain during sexual intercourse can occur when the uterus or ovaries are inflamed and can cause pain when the penis hits the cervix.” She advises women having pain or experiencing bleeding during and after sex to visit their GP for an STI screen to “rule out any infections that might give rise, if left untreated, to pelvic inflammatory disease, ectopic pregnancies, and longer term lower abdominal pain.”

Urinary Pain
UTIs, such as cystitis, are characterized by a burning sensation when urinating or the feeling of urgency when needing to urinate. According to Mary Garthwaite, Consultant Urological Surgeon at James Cook University Hospital, most common factors for cystitis include hormonal changes associated with pregnancy, sexual activity, bowel issues, and fatigue. Pain from cystitis occurs low in the middle of the stomach, below the pubic bone. The bladder can be located by pressing on the middle of the bikini line. Garthwaite says, “If it’s a severe infection, you might get loin pain which can go of to one side and around to your lower back and you may feel as if your kidneys are aching. If you feel as if you may be in the early stages of bladder infection, increase your water intake to dilute the urine and flush out the bacteria clinging to the bladder wall. If symptoms worsen, speak to a pharmacist. Another symptom worthy of a doctor’s attention is the appearance of bright red blood in your urine which may be caused by inflammation from bacteria clinging to the bladder lining.

Woman lying in pain

If you are suffering from chronic pain below the belly button, we hope this has been helpful. Let us know about your experiences and the preventative actions you took.

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Timeless Age Defying Beauty Tips

Charlize Theron

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Ah, Hollywood’s timeless age-defying beauties! The women who have seen it all, done it all, and lived to tell about it, five marriages and ten grandchildren later. The Christie Brinkleys who proudly pose with their grown daughters on the beach with barely a discernible age difference to be found! The Jane Fondas who can still wear the psychedelic space bikinis from their Barbarella days! The Heidi Klums who can still play a mean guitar in their underwear! How do they do it? While that info may be known only to the stars themselves, there are some tips you can follow for achieving your own timeless age-defying beauty.

Makeup

Base
A high-quality primer will camouflage fine lines and prevent makeup from creasing. Try one with an SPF for sun protection and added anti-aging benefits. When it comes to foundation, pick one tailored to mature skin and apply with your fingers, using a moist makeup sponge to avoid a caked-on appearance. If foundation is not your thing, try a light concealer to hide under eye circles and blemishes. Concealer with yellow tones are best for balancing redness and brightening.

If you have noticed the color in your cheeks decreasing as a result of age, you may want to add some blusher. Creams have to benefit of allowing you to gradually increase color, while powders last longer. Bronzers and highlighters can also help to create a youthful look, but try to avoid glittery formulas. Instead, look for finely milled products that build up to create a light sheen.

Jane Fonda

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Eyes and Brows
Eyebrows grow sparse over time, so fuller brows can create a younger appearance, but try to avoid overdoing it with the brow pencil, which can look harsh. You’re better off gently filling out brows with a matching powder and blush for a subtle touch.

Spidery lashes will also add years. When it comes to mascara application, apply just one coat and then wiggle the brush at the lash base to add definition and volume.

If reading glasses are among your daily accessories, be aware that they can magnify eye makeup imperfections. Avoid this by trading in your severe liquid liner for a more forgiving, softer kohl pencil. In addition, be wary of bright eyeshadows which can smudge and smear during the day. this can be avoided by using a primer formulated for the eyes. Use a q-tip moistened with makeup remover to mop up the excess.

Lips
While strong lipstick can bring color to your face, it also tends to bleed into the fine lines around your mouth. You can prevent this by using a good lipliner around the corners of the mouth and cupid’s bow.

Although matte lipsticks are popular, glossy finishes tend to be more flattering and create the illusion of fuller lips. The best way to achieve a natural look is the find a shade of pink that matches the color of the inside of your bottom lip; your perfect neutral.

Halle Berry

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Daily Advice

Beauty Sleep
No matter what new products and procedures come out, it seems that sleep is always number one on the list of anti-agers. Try and get 8-10 hours every night. Also, try to sleep on your back or side with a pillow propped under your ear, as sleeping with your face against the pillows can cause “sleep lines” with may evolve into wrinkles.

Fruits and Veggies
Antioxidant-rich diets are a known component in the prevention of disease and premature aging. Fruits and vegetables are loaded with antioxidants like vitamins C and E, and beta-carotene, which fight free radicals that attack cell membranes. They also protect the nervous system, the immune system, and prevent the brain from oxidative damage leading to memory loss.

How do you achieve your timeless beauty? We want in on your secrets! Let us know!

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