Category Archives: Women’s Issues

The Why’s & How’s of Large Pores

Pores are openings that appear on the surface of the skin and  a concern many individuals have to accept. Large pores can appear unattractive, increase breakouts, and lead to uneven makeup applications. Although pore size is fixed and determined by genetics, there are ways to make enlarged pores appear smaller. From laser treatments, to at home remedies there are many ways to help clean, tighten and refine pores.

The key to keeping pores looking their minimal size is to keep the pores clear and free of congestion. The more dirt that is clogged in the pores the larger they will appear and the more uneven the skin tone and texture will be. Simple daily and weekly steps at home can help you achieve clearer, firmer and more even skin.

Products containing alpha hydroxy acid, glycolic acid, vitamin C and retinol, a form of vitamin A are wonderful for exfoliating the skin

Daily Cleansing:

For cleansing, the Kellett Polishing Gel Cleanser is phenomenal. It is dermatologists formulated and tested, composed of ingredients that will leave your skin happy. The unique texture of the exfoliating micro beads allows for a gentle exfoliation with each use. This cleanser is gentle enough to use on sensitive skin.

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Kellett Clear Polishing Gel Cleanser

Using a serum after cleansing the skin will help you achieve optimal results. Serums are made of smaller molecules and can penetrate deeper into the layers of the skin. Clinique’s Pore Refining Solutions Correcting Serum will help pores appear smaller, while Pore Resurfacing Complex will help clear out debris from the skin, making it appear more even. This product is oil-free and suitable for most skin types.

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Clinique Pore Refining Solutions Correcting Serum

Another wonderful way to make pores appear smaller is to use a pore refiner, which will help instantly even out your skin tone and give a matte finish to the skin, with or without makeup. Benefits POREfessional is a light, tinted balm that provides a beautifully refined complexion. A small dab goes a long way to provide oil-free, translucent pore coverage.

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Benefit Cosmetics the POREfessional

Weekly Care:

A simple weekly routine of steaming and exfoliating the skin will also help you in achieving a flawless complexion with minimal pores.

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Steaming is a great way to open the pores and allow for maximum product penetration and exfoliation. Start by boiling a pot of water and holding your face over it for 1 to 3 minutes.  For better results, hold a towel over your head.

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EmergenC Vitamin C + Retinol Mask

EmergnC Vitamin C + Retinol Mask is an intensive, clay based mask that gives visible results after a one time use. It helps remove dead skin cells, even out the skin tone and brighten your complexion. Made with kaolin, lemon, green tea and licorise it draws out impurities and makes your overall pore size appear smaller.

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Hot & Now: Vitamin C Benefits

There are certain ingredients commonly found in cosmetic and skin care products that are generally known to be beneficial to the skin. Vitamin C is one of those ingredients that consistently gets praised for being nothing short of amazing. Naturally, the best way to consume this to eat it! Oranges, limes, grapefruits… all full of Vitamin C’s!

Cosmetic lines consistently promote having Vitamin C in their products. Looking through the ingredient listing can be difficult as ingredients are often not clear. Vitamin C comes in various forms and different names, including ascorbic acid, L-ascorbic acid, ascorbyl palmitate, sodium ascorbyl phosphate, retinyl ascorbate, tetrahexyldecyl ascorbate, and magnesium ascorbyl phosphate. The primary difference lies in the percentage of the ingredient included and the consistency of the product itself. In your average beauty department, you will be able to find Vitamin C ranging between 0.3% and 10%. There is no ‘best’ product, as the skin type and conditions make all the difference in what you will individually require.

Vitamin C protects cells and the skin’s support structure from UV rays and damage; it also helps improve the appearance of sun-damaged skin. Vitamin C’s are ideal for hyperpigmentation and sun spots, when the product contains a dosage of  3% or higher. It helps promote the skin’s naturally occurring collagen, essentially leading to fewer fine lines and wrinkles, and an overall healthier complexion. When doing facials, microdermabrasions or peels, Vitamin C’s help enhance effectiveness. Dr. Patricia Farris nicely sums up how conclusive research supports the positive effects of vitamin C, stating, “A significant body of scientific research supports the use of cosmeceuticals containing vitamin C. Cutaneous benefits include promoting collagen synthesis, photoprotection from ultraviolet A and B, lightening hyperpigmentation, and improvement of a variety of inflammatory dermatoses.” Overall, Vitamin C is a phenomenal anti-oxidant ingredient to add to your skin care regime.

Product Reviews:

Dermaglow Vitamin C Moisturizer is great for normal to combination skin types that are uneven, dull or scarred. Skin will be gently exfoliated and will appear overall brighter. For combination to oily skin types this moisturizer is ideal for night use, as it is medium weight and moisture rich, therefore  it does not help with oil control. Its blend of strawberry, grape and orange extracts helps reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles while it works below the epidermis (top layer of the skin) to help fight hyperpigmentation.

Vitmain C Daily Moisturizer SPF 30

 

The Body Shop Vitamin C Daily Moisturizer with SPF 30 is a great daily moisturizer for dull skin. It is lightweight and ideal for normal, combination and combination/oily skin. The SPF 30 is a great addition, as it provides UVA, UVB and broad spectrum sun protection. The SPF and the lightweight formula are a great combination for oily skins as it will create a healthy, radiant glow without excess oils. The Amazonian camu camu berry are known to contain some of the highest content of Vitamin C in nature, and it helps encourage elastin and collagen production in the skin, while protecting from free-radicals. It also contains sesame seed oils to help hydrate the skin.

Emergen-C Vitamin C Serum

The Emergen-C Serum contains 20% Vitamin C, the highest grade available for sale cosmetically. While this serum needs to be used with caution and applied gently to the skin, its benefits are phenomenal for fighting fine lines, wrinkles, uneven skin tone, scarring, hyperpigmentation and helps the production of collagen. This treatment is rather costly and is best applied once a day, at night. The high percentage of Vitamin C will make most skins photo-sensitive, therefore wearing it throughout the day is not ideal. Because it is a serum, its consistency will penetrate deeper into the skin and ensure that the moisturizer following will be more effective.

If a Man Wants You… MY Version.

“If a man wants you, nothing can keep him away. If a man doesn’t want you, nothing can make him stay.”

I keep seeing this quote on girl’s pages.

And I know as they read it over and over again to themselves, they are gleefully giggling, thinking “yeah, yeah, ain’t that the truth.”

“If a man wants you, nothing can keep him away?”

Love is not supposed to hurt, or be carried with regret. Love can not be put on hold, and is one of the hardest things to let go. Love is not selfish, love should not be selfish.

A man once promised me, that he had changed and that he would never break my heart. He confessed his love for me, and I trusted that he loved me.

I have grown as a woman over the years, but I have also grown as a person. I know what I want, what I don’t want, what I need, and what I need to let go of. I know a man who knows what he wants, knows what I don’t want, knows what he needs, and knows what I need. I know a man that realizes there is a girl out there, who loves to love her man. This man knows that at times, the only way to save the one you love from getting hurt is not by letting them go, but letting them know, you’ve always loved them and you always will.

I know a man unlike any other man. Because he’s never cheated, he’s never lied; he tells me what it is, no matter what it is. He loved me enough to let me go, until he bettered himself. He loved me enough, to let me go, rather then hurt me along the way.

Therefore when I hear about all these women getting cheated on, knowing it, ignoring it… I can’t help but pity them.

They know it, but figure if he’s staying, he must love them. If he’s coming home every night, they’re content, thinking “he’s home so everything must alright.”

If a man loves you, he will NEVER stay and hurt you. If a man loves you, he will not buy you gifts to make up for the guilt of constantly cheating on you. If a man loves you he will let you go rather then stay and lie, deny, just to keep you guessing. If a man wants to be considered a man, he must posses the qualities of a man, a good man.

“If a man doesn’t want you, nothing can make him stay?”

A man once told me, “If I stay with you, you’ll have to put up with the same life.
Im not ready for change yet”, he would tell me. “I’ll never leave you, but I won’t stay to hurt you either.” If a man wants you, nothing will allow him to hurt you, if a man doesn’t want you, nothing can keep him faithful.”

If you love someone, let them go. If they come back, it was meant to me. If not, it never was….

For the Unconventional Women

Over thirty and not married? According to Ganong and his co-researcher, Elizabeth Sharp, a professor at Texas Tech, if you aren’t married by the age of 30 you are a loser characterized by the pressure to conform to “conventional life pathways,” which naturally include a husband and baby.

Throughout history, men have always been capable of choosing a path in life that they felt suited them best. Unfortunately, women have been unable to have that same right and privilege. Traditional gender roles are still evident in our society and they dominate the way in which the majority of individuals still perceive marriage. From when we are under ten years of age we are already pre-conditioned to accept that our primary function for existence is finding a boy to love us, marriage, followed by children. We spent most of our childhood lives fantasizing about white, strapless gowns and the final “I do’s.” Being unmarried by a certain age implies something ‘wrong’ with you, as no man wants to be with you, rather than the other way around.

A woman being unmarried at any age does not indicate that she is dysfunctional in any way. On the contrary, she may be self aware and confident enough to actually live her life however she desires. Far too often do people get into a relationship unaware of their selves, insecure due to their own flaws- and this especially applies to females. Too many women still live under the notion that once they meet a partner and settle down they will finally find true happiness; hence why the women who chose to remain unmarried are viewed as dysfunctional.

We have shows such as The Bachelor, where twenty five insecure, hopeful women compete for a relationship with a man they barely know anything about. Then we have the female version, The Bachelorette, where twenty five men compete for the temporary love of a stereotypical, desperate woman. There are endless shows with a similar theme, implying that women can only find true happiness through a man and marriage. Yet all these shows have one similarity among them and that is the inability for any of these relationships to endure past the first three months. It’s rather fascinating that with numerous failed relationship attempts these shows still continue to dominate our television screens and brainwash our already manipulated minds.

Well, newsflash to all the traditional, old school, judgmental individuals- some women chose to be emotionally reliant on themselves and indirectly married to their careers. Being unwilling to rely on a man for financial or emotional stability is one of the top reasons why women chose to be alone, alongside endless other personal motives.

What makes a person happy can not be determined by anyone or anything other than that person. Maybe that thirty-two year old you met at the party and questioned about her single status has consciously made this choice for herself and is content with it. Far too often does society assume and judge others, however every person makes decisions on a daily basis and the majority of these grown women have made the decision to spend their life with friends, family and colleagues.

It is now 2012 and it is time to let go of the conventional, traditional gender roles.

Fame and the Kardashian Effect

Far too often in today’s media do we encounter individuals lusting after fame. Not knowledge, not fortune, not dreams. While some people are more interested in fame due to a talent they are blessed with, many more simply want to be, well, famous. This isn’t much of a surprise with the numerous individuals walking around Hollywood without having made much of a contribution to society in any way, shape, or form. Who else to use for an example then the Kardashian trio?

Not a single one of these females positively contributes to our world, yet society is obsessed with every step they take, every dress they try on, and every man they sleep with. In  every magazine I pick up, every channel I flip through and every online social network I login to, all I am bombarded with is the Kardashian effect.

We have the reality show, Keeping Up With the KardashiansKim has a book, perfume, and jewelry line. She promotes working out with her Fit in Your Jeans by Friday exercise DVDs, during which you can wear Skechers, another client using her to sell unnecessary products. If you want to look cute, pop on some Kim-endorsed LipFusion Infatuation. Then there’s her Beach Bunny bikinis selling for $200 each and her ShoeDazzle shoes for another $49.99.. What do all these facts add to? Millions of dollars, fifteen minutes of fame and a horrifying future for the millions of young girls idolizing Kim as their role models.

Despite all Kim’s extraordinary achievements,  simply put, not a single one of the Kardashian trio possesses a degree in any field. Let me also continue to state that not a single one of them has any information of significance to share with the world. Not once have I heard a Kardashian speak regarding feminism, or politics, or maybe day to day issues that affect our youth such as bullying or drug abuse. No. All we are exposed to is their lavish lifestyle and their expensive houses and cars that we provided them with.

I would like to remind everyone that Kim Kardashian became famous after a brief relationships with rapper Ray J, who “leaked” a homemade porno video of the couple. Since then, Kim has gone on to become an icon and the beauty editor of OK! magazine. As a journalism major this appalls me. There is much work that is required behind becoming an editor, and Kim does not contain any of the required skills.

Well, it is no wonder much of our youth aspires to be famous in all wrong the ways, because as the Kardashians have demonstrated a leaked sex tape may eventually land an editing contract.

The Truth Behind the Veil

The Truth Behind the Veil: Distinguishing Between Religion and Culture

The only time Orit Adose felt out of place wearing her cultural veil was in Toronto’s Transit Commission. She remembers fearing riding the subway due to cold stares of rejection as if her choice to wear her hijab was a personal attack on those judging her; and she remembers under-breath mumbling of her intense need of rescue even though she felt liberated under her veil. It was because of the TTC that Orit made the conscious choice to only wear her hijab when she is praying.

It is common in Western society to look at a woman in a veil and wonder whether she is forced to wear that veil or if she made the conscious decision, out of her own free will. “The hijab is a representation of a woman’s faith and devotion to her culture,” says Hilda Osman, a member of the Sister’s Committee at the Pickering Islamic Center. So why is the hijab often associated with the Muslim religion in itself?

In order to understand Islam one must first separate the religion from the cultural norms and practices of certain societies. The hijab is a deliberate, personal choice that is only religiously required to worn during prayer; as such, it is not required to be worn at all times.

Hinda differentiates between the four different dressing attires practiced and the countries they are mostly practiced in. The hijab is a veil that covers a woman’s hair and shows her face entirely. It is common throughout the world. The burqa is a form of body cover that extends from head to feet with a mesh over the woman’s face, which allows her to see and breathe. This body cover is most common in Afghanistan. The chador is a Persian term for a body covering that sits on the head and covers the entire body. Lastly, the niqab is a veil that covers the head and face, leaving a space for the eyes; common in Saudi Arabia and the Arabian Pennisula.

“The first step to ending stereotyping against Muslim women is to understand that just like Christian and Jewish women, Mulsim women practice their faith in different countries of the world,” explains Hinda. “It is often easy to forget that we are not all one large group of homogenous clones of each other.” She goes on to explain that Muslim women can be found in countries throughout the Middle East, Europe, Asia as well as Northern Africa.

In many countries, however, Muslim women do not chose to wear any of the above dress forms. In Europe, many countries practice Islam. These countries include Albania, Bosnia, Yugoslavia and Poland. In all of the above countries it is not legally mandatory to be covered in any Islamic dressing form. This leads to the question: why is it that certain Islamic countries impose a hijab, chador, niqab or burqa upon their women?

“Islamic extremists in many countries chose to use their power to belittle women in the name of religion,” says Orit. A perfect example of this is the Taliban in Afghanistan and Pakistan, completely degrading the rules Muslims live by.

Under the Taliban regime between 1996 and 2001 women were unable to work, unable to be educated past the age of eight and even unable to visit male doctors without a male companion; which led to many illnesses remaining untreated. The women were forced to wear a burqa at all times and remain in their home taking care of their household chores.

Saudi Arabia is another example of an extremist Islamic country where there is no differentiation between culture and religion. Although 70% of the university students are women, only 5% of the workforce is composed of females. Women in Saudi Arabia are not as much as allowed to drive a car. This obscure law was passed in 1990 when fourty-seven women were “caught” driving. However, many females break the law and chose drive despite potential consequences.

“A woman forbidden from driving in Riyadh will get behind a wheel with enthusiasm, as she has knowledge that this injustice has nothing to do with the religion she believes in,” says Hinda. “The same applies to cultural dress forms. It is easy to confuse practice and culture withreligion,” she specifies.

Islam is potentially one of the most misinterpreted religions of the world. Cultural practices and unjust laws that are sadly imposed due to extremist rules are often interpreted as religious practices, especially in the Western world where stereotypes towards Islamic people are extremist. In order to truly end discrimination and stereotyping toward Islamic women it is essential to understand that Islam is practiced in many parts of the world with different laws and different cultural norms.