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So, thanks to the Decollete Pad, your decolletage is looking gorgeous - now what?
Why not show it off this summer in a maxi dress?
Follow style maven Paula Joye’s tips and you’ll be pulling off the maxi dress look in no time.
LESS IS MORE: Loose-fitting, voluminous maxi dresses look great on very tall, very thin or very pregnant women. For the rest of us, it’s better to choose a frock that skims (not hugs) the body. Straight or slighty A-line, bias cut styles are the most universally flattering and will stop you looking boxy, swamped or overwhelmed by your dress
CHEAT YOUR WAIST: Use a belt to cinch in your waist and create a more balance silhouette. The trick is not placing the belt around your middle but just at the base of your ribcage instead. This is usually the smallest part of your torso and will create the illusion of longer legs and a tinier waist. Important when you’re covering so much skin
.NAILING THE NECKLINE: If you have wide shoulders try a halter neck that breaks up the line of your decolletage. Bigger busts need support in a maxi so choose a dress that can be worn with a bra or look for styles with some bulit in structure. Strapless and shoe-string straps look best on a smaller bust. If you’re curvy, then a scooped or one shouldered neck line will help balance out your shape.
(Photo: Damian Bennett)
KEEP IT SIMPLE: As a general rule, maxi dresses look best in dark or neutral block colours. There are loads of prints around this season and the most flattering are those with a medium to large designs. Think animal print, ombre or tie-dye. Tiny dots and florals will just add volume and always, under every circumstance, avoid horizontal stripes.
CUT THE FUSS: I personally prefer flat sandals with maxi dresses but if you need the extra height then a wedge is really your only heel option. Keep your accessories delicate - no big slouchy bags or over-sized necklaces. Stick to earrings, ring and bracelets.
Did you love our coconut oil tips? Ever the trustworthy health advocate, the fabulous Sarah Wilson has come up with 19 more!
1. Fry and roast your roots!
As I mentioned the other week, coconut oil is by far the safest, healthiest and tastiest oils to cook with (along with ghee). But it’s particularly tasty for cooking sweeter vegetables like pumpkin and carrots. I really like this recipe from My New Roots, which I’ve tried without the dressing she suggests, and the maple syrup.
coconut roasted carrots
zest of 2 oranges
juice of 1 orange
2 Tbsp. fresh ginger, minced
1 tsp. maple syrup (or some stevia)
1 tbsp. coconut oil or ghee, melted
1 tbsp. sesame seeds
pinch sea salt
Whisk all marinade ingredients together, add the carrots and toss to coat. Pour carrots and marinade out onto a baking sheet, sprinkle with sesame seeds, and place into preheated HOT oven. Roast for 15 minutes.
I love pumpkin fried off in coconut oil. I’ve shared this recipe here.
Also, brussel sprouts!!!!
2. Eat it straight from the jar (my #1 fail-proof craving curber)
After lunch I still get sweet/”I need something more” cravings. So this is my failproof trick. I eat two tablespoons of coconut oil. It satisfies my need for something sweet and KILLS appetite for about 4-5 hours. I really challenge you to try it (allow about ten minutes to feel the effect).
3. Use it as a moisturiser, especially in summer!
I scoop straight from the jar (I keep a jar in the bathroom) and apply onto moist skin. I mix in a few drops of Vitamin E oil, too. The wonderful health properties seep through the skin, too. In ayervedic terms, it’s a cooling oil and so is perfect at this time of year – it will help you sleep at night (PS in winter I use untoasted sesame oil, which is a warming oil).
4. Blokes! Use as a shave gel.
5. Look out for coconut snacks like these:
I’ve discovered these Artisana nut and seed butter snacks and I eat the coconut oil and coconut butter ones straight out of the packet with a spoon. Honestly. So good. You can find them at select health food shops.
6. Use it for healing wounds.
Coconut oil is anti microbial. Rub a bit on any scrapes or cuts to aid the healing process.
7. Make your own coconut cream
Sadly, coconut cream mostly comes in cans, which contain BPAs. Bad. Chris Kresser made this point recently and shared some brands that don’t contain BPAs: One is Native Forest, which you can purchase on Amazon. The other is Arroy-D, which is a brand imported from Thailand. You can get it here.
8. Try it as an eye make up remover.
Really! Plus it’s gentle and moisturizing unlike chemical make up removers.
9. Try a wonderful macaroon recipe here.
10. And my nutballs recipe here.
11. Use it as an odour neutraliser.
If your hands smell of garlic or onion from preparing a meal, or you’ve just applied apple cider vinegar to your sunburn (it’s very effective in neutralizing sunburn, relieving pain, and preventing blistering and peeling – as an aside!) lather yourself in coconut oil to get rid of the smells.
12. Know that coconut sugar is not a good idea.
Here’s what you need to know about coconut sugar…full of fructose.
13. Use it as a sunscreen for a quick vitamin D fix!
Coconut oil is at least an SPF4, so it does help with a little protection if you’re just heading into the sun briefly for some vitamin D. (Stay tuned for my upcoming blog on sunscreen).
14. And as a deodorant. Yes!
a coconut deodorant recipe
I’m yet to try this one, but the recipe comes from Lana Purcell. Thanks Lana!
- 1/4 cup arrowroot
- 1/4 cup baking soda
- 5 tbs coconut oil
- 20 drops essential oil (you pick your favourites)
Mix it all together, It is easier if the oil is melted down and then pour into a mould or an empty deodorant container that you can reuse.
15. Tame your hair!
Yes really. Spread a small amount through damp hair, it helps tame those frizzy fly-aways. And the smell is lovely and summery.
16. As a toothpaste.
coconut oil toothpaste
- 1/4 cup coconut oil
- 1/4 cup baking soda
- A few drops of liquid stevia
- Several drops of spearmint or peppermint essential oil
Mix well and add water to reach desirable consistency. This is an inexpensive alternative to fluoride-free toothpaste. It’s also suitable for people with sensitive teeth. (recipe by Liz atLiving the Nourished Life)
17. Make this icecream chocolate topping * the kind that goes hard on impact
If you’re not on the I Quit Sugar bandwagon, you might like this simple idea:
ice cream chocolate topping
- 200 grams bittersweet chocolate, chopped
- 2 tablespoons virgin coconut oil
Melt the chocolate in a small metal bowl set over a pan of simmering water. Stir in the coconut oil and heat until dissolved, about 1 minute. Keep the liquid lukewarm until ready to pour over the ice cream. Chocolate will harden into a shell within a few seconds when spooned over ice cream. Yield: 3/4 cup (good for 4 to 6 scoops).
18. Use it on your baby as a nappy rash cream.
If you have babies around, try this as an alternative to the chemical-filled options.
19. and for something extra: oil pulling
Oil pulling is a practice taken from Ayurvedic medicine that involves swishing (or pulling) unrefined oil in your mouth for several minutes. It’s a powerful method of detoxifying the body, and coconut oil is highly recommended for this practice.
The benefits of oil pulling cover everything from curing gingivitis to facilitating weight loss, and include:
- whiter, straighter teeth
- healthy, pink gums
- increased energy
- decreased migraine headaches
- clear sinuses
- less severe asthma
- decreased allergies
- improved PMS symptoms
- regulated menstrual cycles
- better sleep
- clear skin
Sounds good? Here’s how to do it:
- ideally oil pulling should be done first thing every morning on an empty stomach
- use about one tablespoon of oil (if it’s too much for you initially, start with less)
- a couple drops of essential oil or a healing oil like oregano (which might be good for thrush) can be added if desired
- swish the oil slowly and methodically, and try to make sure the oil reaches every region of your mouth
- swish the oil for approx 10 minutes, if you can. The oil will become very thin and foamy
- spit the oil out and rinse your mouth thoroughly with water
- brush with toothpaste afterwards
Here are some great tips on how to feel and look great this summer, courtesy of Urban Remedy:
1. Drink a glass of warm boiled water first thing in the morning to flush out your lymphatic system – this is an amazing (free) home remedy for combatting cellulite, fluid retention, bloating and enhancing digestion and detoxification. We say boiled as the body can then use it immediately rather than processing (digesting) the mineral content.
2. Hydrate throughout the day: don’t guzzle your 1.5-2L in one sitting. Sip on water throughout the day to stay continuously hydrated. And avoid drinking with meals as this dilutes your digestive juices!
3. Do some gentle weights or toning exercises every morning. You don’t need a gym or even gym gear to do this! Tricep dips on the bath are a sneaky whole-body toning exercise (they get your legs and tum toned too if done correctly). Simply do 2 sets of 25, et voilà!
4. Moisturise and protect. If you want to stay youthful and avoid the dreaded leather-face look, moisturising and applying SPF is the ONLY way. Think 15+ not factor 4 coconut oil, unless you’re trying to re-enact a scene from Hot Shots.
5. Fake it to make it. Yep, we’re talking about fake tan. Not the orange kind but a nice subtle hint of summer in a bottle… You can get some pretty good ones now (even organic), either applied in salon or at home. For you Sydney peeps, we like Fleur De Lys MediSpa in Woollahra – $25 tans every Friday, all summer. Yes please.
6. Get 15 minutes of SPF-free sunshine every day to boost your vitamin D levels.
7. Keep it clean throughout the silly season. Make sure your liver is getting the TLC it needs by supplementing with milk thistle and detoxing regularly to avoid toxic overload. We often recommend cleansers with busy social calendars try weekly mini-cleanses throughout December, working their way towards a longer ‘new year cleanse’ in January.
8. Give your summer drinks a makeover. Claire from the Saha Space shared some of her lovely ice tea recipes with us last week. Check them out here. We also recommend choosing your alcoholic mixers carefully – soda water and fresh lime is always a good option. Avoid pre-mixed drinks, soft drinks (even diet), fruit juice (you can bet the stuff at the bar isn’t good for you) and milky cocktails.
9. Avoid yeast and sugar to beat the bloat. We often think wheat/gluten is the culprit (and it is for some people) when in fact it is more likely to be yeast. If you’re OK with pasta but not with bread and pizza, yeast is not your friend. Try sourdough bread if this is the case.
10. Tune in to summer cravings (good ones that is). Fresh fruit, fresh veg, grilled fish, seafood, barbecues… We naturally eat differently according to the season so it’s time to break out of your winter food rut and embrace summer.
To give smoothies an extra vitamin punch, we love to add maca powder to them. Cultivated in the Peruvian Andes for nearly 2,600 years, maca is rich in minerals such as calcium and magnesium.
Make sure you buy a variety that is grown high up in the Andes, otherwise it doesn’t pack as much punch! We like to get our maca powder from www.hippocrates.com.au
Lemon juice is very medicinal and contains a whole lot of Vitamin C. When mixed with warm water, it relieves digestive problems like heartburn, nausea, bloating and belching. It has the ability to fight ageing symptoms like blackheads and wrinkles.
Wash the lemon and cut into two equal parts.
Juice the lemon using a manual citrus juicer.
Pour in a glass cup and refrigerate.
But if leaving for a longer time, heat ½ cup of water in a pot. Add sugar if you want extra sweetness. Boil until the sugar completely dissolves in the water. Mix the sweetened water with the lemon juice.
Best served chilled.