INSPIRATION VAULT: Beauty from the dark side

An ode to dark beauty……

Black lips, smouldering eyes, inky lashes dark as night.

Streaks of ebony. Lashings of charcoal. Smudges of coal. Sharp lines in jet. Flashes of onyx, obsidian.

Shadowy, pitch dark, sombre, alarming, dramatic, edgy.

Raven-sable-dusky mistress of the dark.

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IDOL FRIDAY: 10 things about Debbie

1. Blondie`s video for their hit song “Rapture” featured a cameo appearance New York artist/Andy Warhol disciple Jean Michel Basquiat, whose life was portrayed in the Basquiat (1996).

2. As of 1989, she dropped using Debbie as a stage name and returned to using Deborah.

3. Deborah was considered for the role of Pris in Blade Runner (1982) but Daryl Hannah was chosen instead

4. Debbie was one of the artists to perform in the 2006 closing night at New York`s legendary punk club, CBGB`s.

5. Blondie was inducted into the Rock And Roll Hall of Fame on March 13, 2006.

6. Dyed her hair red for her role as James Woods’s masochistic girlfriend in David Cronenberg’s Videodrome (1983)

7. Eat To The Beat, released in 1979, is an early video collection by Blondie. The late model Gia Carangi appears in the eighth video, “Atomic”.

8. Was up for the female lead roles in the movies Raging Bull (1980) and TRON (1982)

9. Debbie was a member of The Stilettos in the early 70s. Debbie met Chris Stein, who was the guitarist, and when the Stilettos disbanded in the mid-70s, Harry and Stein formed Blondie.

10. Worked in New York City’s very first Head Shop, a shop specializing in drug paraphernalia used for consumption of cannabis and other recreational drugs.

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GLOW: The wonders of Apple Cider Vinegar

If you don’t already have a stash, it may time to invest in some good old Apple Cider Vinegar  (ACV) for your beauty cabinet as well as your pantry. More than just being king of the dressing salads, and a superstar at pickling things, the so-called ‘miracle’ vinegar provides a not-so-secret host of applications beyond the kitchen! Oooooh! Read on lovely, this all-in-one beauty product is soon to become a staple for all you natural beauties on a budget.

The use of vinegar with a variety of plants or essential oils for cosmetic purposes can be traced back to the Romans and was fashionable during the 19th century as ‘vinegar de toilette’.  Hollywood hottie Scarlett Johansson apparently swears by ACV to keep her visage looking lovely. “If you have breakouts, it can be really healing,” she tells Elle UK. “It’s a little bit stinky, but if you’re not sleeping over at your boyfriend’s, it’s really effective”. ScarJo apparently mixes a little with lemon juice, which, when diluted with some purified water, can make an excellent facial astringent to moisturise, refresh and purify skin.

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So, how does it work? Well this wonder juice is made from fermented apples (that is first fermented to cider, then re-fermented into vinegar). Malic and lactic acids found in the vinegar help to soften and exfoliate your skin, reduce red marks, and treat acne on both your face and body. ACV has antibacterial and antiseptic properties and does a sterling job at regulating the pH of your skin, which is super important in having great skin! The more balanced the pH of your skin, the better – you want to control that oil whilst not drying your skin out too much. Many of the harsh chemicals in many of the big beauty brands that are marketed at acne-prone skin are also excellent at zapping your skin of all its moisture.  I have tried almost every single one of those products in my teens and twenties and so many of them were just soooo harsh- they virtually strip your skin of all its good oils and make it dry, flaky, irritated and red. Not a good look, and gosh knows what it may be doing to your sensitive dermis.  The acidity of ACV counteracts that process and actually balances your skin and hair’s natural pH levels. When making the switch to apple cider vinegar, you instantly decrease the consumption of unnatural chemicals, which is always a good thing if you are conscious of your chemical load and its impact on wellbeing.

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Making a refreshing astringent from apple cider vinegar is dead simple – you’ll wonder why you didn’t do it YEARS ago. Dilute approx. one part vinegar with anywhere between two – eight parts purified water, and gently wipe/ dab the concoction over your face with a cotton ball, avoiding the eye area, just like a regular toner.  When you first start using this toner, it’s a good idea to start off with a 1:8 ratio first and see how your skin reacts. You can then make it stronger or weaker depending on how it feels. Many people also like to add green tea and/or other essential oils to mask its strong scent. It can be stored in a clean, sterilised glass container – try to avoid plastic containing nasties which may negate all the goodness. You could also put it in a mister bottle (again, try to find a non-plastic one) and lightly spray over the face.

You can apply the lotion at night after washing, and in the morning before you apply your moisturizer. Just use it in place of your normal toner. The acidity of the vinegar will create a light layer on the skin, locking in moisture. If you have sensitive skin, you may want to dilute the solution further, and use it once a day only to ensure your skin isn’t reacting.

A dab of pure apple cider vinegar can also be left on the skin overnight to fade age spots or acne scars.  Apple cider vinegar can also help reduce red marks and blemishes, and soften skin.

When used in your beauty regimen, apple cider vinegar can help you get pretty from head to toe. It soothes and promotes quick healing.  And it’s cheap too! Be sure to choose an organic brand of raw apple cider vinegar for the most beauty benefits. Honestly, there is NO NEED to fork out on a brand name toner that can set you back $30 or $40.

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There are a range of other benefits that many people claim this wonder vinegar achieves.  Besides topical use, a lot of people find it a great supplement to take orally, for a range of different reasons from detoxing, allergies, to candida, to chronic fatigue.  Whilst I can’t really handle doing pure shots of it myself (too strong! Its burns!) I have tried it diluted in both hot and cold water and it does make a great internal cleanser. If you’re interested in reading more info on the benefits of drinking apple cider vinegar, you can look over here.

Lovely one, do you have a CRAZY amazing beauty or health secret that you’d like to share? Let me know in the comments below or head over to my FACEBOOK PAGE and leave me a comment!

xDS