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Among all the downsides of cold weather, dry feet have got to be one of the worst. Not only are dry feet uncomfortable, but they can also actually be harmful over time, leading to cracked heels, redness, irritation, and – if you’re really unlucky – actual wounds.

Once your feet are already in that state, it’ll take a while to get them back to feeling like a baby’s bottom… or close enough. But it’s completely doable! And a foot salve is indispensable to getting there. With daily use, foot salves and balms will not only bring the moisture back to your feet, but they’ll also soothe redness and inflammation as well as protect them from further damage.

And if your feet aren’t ridiculously dry yet? Don’t wait until they are to take action. It’s better to keep your feet moisturized and, yes, a bit pampered on a regular basis rather than try to rescue them after they’ve already turned into sandpaper.

A yummy-smelling, super-soft foot salve can give you that extra boost of motivation to actually take good care of your feet this winter. Even better? You can make a great foot salve yourself at home, without any fussy ingredients.

This DIY foot salve will keep your feet smooth and soft all winter long.

Ingredients*:

Makes 1/2 cup.

1/4 cup shea butter
2 tablespoons coconut oil
2 tablespoons sweet almond oil
1/2 oz beeswax, grated (optional)
10 drops peppermint essential oil
10 drops vanilla essential oil

*The ingredients for this recipe are very easy to customize – you can use what you have at home. You can swap the shea butter for cocoa butter, swap the sweet almond oil for olive oil or jojoba oil, or swap the vanilla essential oil with your favorite scent. All of these butters and oils are ultra-moisturizing, so use what works for you!

1. Combine the shea butter, coconut oil, sweet almond oil, and beeswax in a saucepan over low heat.
2. Stir until melted, then remove from heat.
3. Add essential oils, then stir to combine.
4. Pour mixture into a clean jar or container.
5. Let cool until solid.

To use, massage a small amount into your feet each night. Apply to cracked heels as needed. And as always, stay hydrated, gently exfoliate your feet with a pumice stone, and make your tootsies happier with a good massage.

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Oh, we are all about…




Ten Steps for Beautiful Eyes

by Gail Kavanagh

It is said that the eyes are the mirrors of the soul – and there is little doubt that a pair of beautiful, sparkling eyes can be a real asset.

Improve your general eye health

Include more fish and green vegetables in your diet, and cut down on white flour and sugar. Researchers at Tufts University in Boston found that so-called `bad carbs’ like refined sugar and flour can raise the risk of poor eye health in later years. On the other hand, fish oils and antioxidants can keep them sparkling!

Deal with those dark circles

If they are caused by late nights and too much coffee, you need to change your habits, for the sake of your eyes. Get some more sleep (they don’t call it `beauty sleep’ for nothing!) and switch to herbal teas. Bilberry was used by British and US pilots in WWII to improve night vision and has long been recognized as beneficial for eyes. Chamomile tea will help you sleep, and the cooled tea bags can be used as relaxing eye compresses.

Open up the eye area

Get your eyebrows professionally plucked. It’s amazing what a different this will make. The whole eye area will become lighter and brighter, the better to show off your make up!

Use a good eye cream

This doesn’t have to be expensive. Choose an eye cream that works for you, designed to concentrate on your areas of concern, such as puffiness or lines. It must be applied very gently, never rub or drag the cream onto the eye area. Just gently pat it on, avoiding contact with the eye itself. Even the best cream will sting and make your eyes water if you get it into the eyes. Cooled chamomile tea bags or slices of cucumber will help reduce puffiness, while egg white will tighten the skin around the eyes.

Do simple eye exercises

You can do these when you are waiting in traffic, or any other time when you have time to kill. They strengthen the eyes and help with the burning and itching of `computer eyes’. Just look up, and then down, right and then left and roll your eyes. You need to do each movement around ten times, looking as far as you can in one direction.

Use a light hand with make up for day

In daylight hours, you want to enhance your eyes. Use a light concealer to mask dark shadows, and powder gently over the eye area so make up does not run or cake into creases. Use a light powder shadow in a color to tone with your eyes. Don’t use dark or heavy eye brow pencils or eye liner, as these will age your eyes in daylight. Use eye shadow in the correct brown tone, applied with a brush to your eyebrows, as this will look more natural. Eye shadow can also substitute for eye liner and will look softer.

Sparkle at night

Evening is the time to add shine to your eyes with iridescent or metallic eye shadows. Gold tones look sumptuous and silver stands right out, but don’t overlook the possibilities in other glowing shades. A trick for soft but glamorous evening eyes is to use a darker tone of your eye shadow as eye liner. Use an eye lash curler to give definition to your lashes and apply thickening mascara. Use a light colored concealer to make your eyes stand right out.

Clean off make up thoroughly

It’s time worn advice, but no less essential for that. Eye make up left on while you sleep will irritate or even damage the eyes. Use a gentle cleansing pad and remove all traces of make up before you go to bed. Apply an overnight cream to hydrate the eye area.

Protect your eyes in strong sunlight

Sunglasses are not just from hiding from the paparazzi! Get the best sunglasses you can afford and make sure they wrap around the sides of you eyes. UV rays will damage your unprotected eyes and give you lines that have nothing to do with smiling, and be impossible to eradicate. Protect you skin and eyes from the sun and you will not need expensive creams or surgery in the future.

The last tip is attributed to Audrey Hepburn, whose eyes were legendary: “for beautiful eyes, look for the good in others.” Attitude can count for a lot – smile lines are better than frown lines, eyes that shine with hope and compassion will always be beautiful.


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