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Aside from all the other fabulous beauty pointers I have given over the years on my Behind The Brush Blog, online and on national television, I want to share some other words of wisdom with you that will hopefully make a unique difference in your daily routine.

“Always be a first-rate version of yourself, instead of a second-rate version of somebody else.”
~ Judy Garland

Here are some of my everyday AM and PM beauty secrets to help you be a “first-rate version of yourself” every morning, and keep you moving upward and forward each day.

Rockin’ the AM

• Good morning sunshine. Your body wakes up quicker when it’s daylight outside. I recommend keeping your curtains open so the sun can help you wake more naturally. In the winter, you can use a sunlight box with a timer.

• Cold water. If you want to wake up quicker and stay a wake, try a splash (or three) of cold water to your face. If that’s too much of a shock, try drinking a glass of cold water because it stimulates the body and helps you stay awake.

• Eat a healthier breakfast. A whole-grain bagel with light cream cheese and green tea is a great way to start the day. In addition to the antioxidant benefits, green tea has caffeine and is high in the amino acid L-theanine that has a calming effect and aids with concentration. You will gain a different level of alertness when you drink green tea especially in the morning (helping you to feel a caffeine-like “awake” effect even).

• ALWAYS brush your teeth. You don’t need to spend a lot of time doing this in the morning, because nighttime brushing is the most important. Dedicate at least 30 seconds in the morning.

• ALWAYS use deodorant (maybe even body spray). Perspiration is mostly odorless until bacteria grow which causes body odor. Be sure your armpits are dry before applying deodorant. To feel fresh throughout the day, I also recommend wearing a light fragrance –like any out of my Live+Love+Laugh Fragrance Trio. Apply to your wrists, ankles, and sides of your neck (keep a deodorant and your body spray in your bag to apply again later if needed).

• Check yourself out. Yes, really, you should do this. Before you leave your home: Look in the mirror, smile and say the mantra: “I will remember to smile!”

Rollin’ thru the PM

• No night time carbs or sugar or salt or caffeine. Sorry: no rice, no pasta, no bread and no potatoes at night. It’s better to eat a high-protein, low-sugar dinner. I recommend wild salmon and lightly grilled asparagus (a natural diuretic). Believe me, you’ll wake up in the morning with more defined cheekbones and less puffy eyes. Dermatologists say that when your diet is high in glycemic carbohydrates, your features take on a “soft, doughy appearance.” Especially avoid that late night snack bag of potato chips and/or tub of cookie dough ice cream. If you feel an urge for something crunchy or dessert-y, try a small romaine salad tossed in a light balsamic or a Greek-style yogurt. If you must have a coffee (or a Diet Coke) at night, be sure it’s decaffeinated so you can sleep well.

• Don’t tug and scrub your eyelids. Take care of your delicate lower eyelids while taking off your mascara at the day’s end. Wrinkles and bags can be intensified when you pull and scrub your eyelid. Tense your lower eyelid while you remove your eye makeup to prevent skin from stretching. Gently stroke or pat with a clean washrag or cotton ball from the outer corner of your eye in to the bridge of your nose. (You may remember what I’ve said before about taking your make-up off before you go to bed and the mantra: “I will not go to sleep with my make-up on.”)

• Shrink puffy eyes. Your eyes are windows to your soul because they truly and deeply reflect your state of mind. If you have red, puffy, watery, or bloodshot eyes every morning, you won’t be revealing the true you. Perhaps you have allergies. Taking an antihistamine like Claritin (Loratadine) before going to sleep could help you in as little as a week (Before using any medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history). Also use my extra rich, water-free, highly concentrated night treatment Reorganize Night Eye Balm, you will notice firmer, more lifted, less lined eye area as it treats and protects the delicate tissue around the eye all night.

• Relax, even just for a minute. A lot of you like to catch up on technology at night–watching television or checking emails–but studies show that can affect the quality of your sleep. A little inner peace goes a long way. Unwind instead with relaxing bath, a little yoga or a quick meditation. This will focus your mind, calm your soul, and center yourself inward. If not meditation, just being quiet at the end of the night helps. You can slow down your heart rate and perhaps feel a sense of calmness during sleep. I suggest practicing a “mindful minute” of breathing. First, close your eyes and slowly take an “in” breath while you count to 8, hold it for 2 counts, then release an “out” breath for 8 counts. Another simple meditation I like (especially for those of you who might have a hard time stopping the internal chatter) allows negative thoughts to be diffused by the repetition of positive words in a one-minute mantra of: “I must take care of my needs and myself first.” Remember, relaxing before you go to bed allows you sleep better and you will wake up looking better.

• Clean air. Breathe fresh air during the night. The quality of the air in your bedroom can affect your appearance in the morning. Air purifiers help you breathe better at night since they remove allergens and pollutants in the air. If you don’t have an air purifier and it’s a cool night perhaps open a screened window a little. You’ll wake up in the morning with a more refreshed face, lungs, body and mind.

• ALWAYS brush your teeth. Spend more time with your toothbrush each night. It is so important to remove the hidden deposits of the day. Saliva has self-cleansing properties. Saliva flow (and the swallowing reflex) decreases at night when you sleep so chances of decay are more if brushing isn’t done. Food particles that aren’t removed will ferment from the bacteria in the mouth to produce an acid. This causes tooth decay. (Also, brush your tongue (front to back) each night).

• Plump your lips overnight. This secret can be fun and beautiful. Apply a double dose of lip plumper at night. Use my Lip 6X Lip Amplifying Serum on your lips, lip lines and lip edges each evening to keep your lips moisturized and become plumper overnight. Your lips will look fuller, more amplified, and extra luscious in the morning. It may be used more frequently for increased results because it has vectorized peptides and collagen-injected liposomes combined with tissue-supporting chondroitin (isn’t that a mouthful of awesomeness?).

• Rest and sleep on your back. The eternally classic beauty Audrey Hepburn said lying on your stomach is bad for “beauty sleep.” I concur. The “sleeping on your back” position balances your body weight and keeps your internal organs aligned (and to keep your back aligned, put a pillow under your knees). Think about this: most of your head weighs seven to eight pounds, and that’s a lot of pressure to put on your face every night! (I’ve heard that many dermatologists can tell what side of the face you sleep on by the number of wrinkles–so I hope you’ll agree: no more stomach or side position sleeping, please.)

• Raise your head upwards. Prop your head up on an extra pillow to prevent fluid from settling. You can also put the headrest area of your bed on 2- to 4-inch pieces of wood. This is a time when gravity helps you with lymph and blood flow so fluids won’t accumulate under your eyes and in your face.

I hope my morning and evening beauty secrets help keep you upwardly mobile-–moving forward and outward and beyond each and every day.

“Nothing is impossible, the word itself says ‘I’m possible’!”
~ Audrey Hepburn


Have a Beautiful Day (& Night!),