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Posted by on Mar 1, 2015 in Beauty and Fashion, Beauty Tips, Hair, Body and Skin Care | 0 comments

5 Facts About Allergies to Hair Products

5 Facts About Allergies to Hair Products

Allergic reactions don’t just come from the foods we eat. You can react to just about any substance – including the ingredients in your hair products. Dr. Jan and the team from Madison Reed offer some very helpful insight into allergic reactions and the ingredients in the hair products we use.

1. What is an allergic reaction?

You could think of an allergic reaction as “too much of a good thing.” I say that because it’s a result of your body’s natural defenses working overtime. An allergic reaction is an inappropriate response to an otherwise harmless substance. When the body becomes sensitized to a substance, that substance becomes an allergen. Since this response depends on each body’s response, different people are allergic or sensitive to different things.

2. Why are some people allergic to hair color?

Allergens can get into our bodies in a multitude of ways, like eating peanut butter, breathing in pollen, through the blood when a bee stings, or topical like hair dye. It’s not well understood why some people react to certain substances while others do not.

Como Light Brown 2

Let’s talk about common ingredients in hair dye that can trigger sensitivities. Much of the hair dye made today is still based on formulas developed during the Industrial Revolution. The most common chemicals in hair dye linked to allergic reactions are PPD, ammonia, and resorcinol.

Knowing which ingredients pose a risk will help you make the best choices for yourself. Luckily, advances in science have led to healthier hair color formulas—like Madison Reed Radiant Color Kit —that give high performance without these common, potentially dangerous allergens.

3. Can I get hair color without these ingredients?

Yes! Madison Reed permanent color is free of PPD, ammonia, resorcinol, added parabens, and gluten. And Madison Reed products do not contain any of the 22 chemicals that are banned in the EU, which has stricter safety standards for hair color.

Sicily Blonde 2

If you have high sensitivity to oxidative ingredients (which all permanent color requires to process hair), semi-permanent gloss is another option. This is a category of hair color that deposits pigments onto your hair without chemically opening the hair shaft. The tradeoff is that semi-permanent color cannot fully cover grays. Learn more about the difference between semi-permanent and permanent color on the Madison Reed blog so you can make a more informed decision!

4. How do I make sure a product is safe for me?

If you have had an allergic reaction of any kind and know what you are allergic to, avoid the allergen completely. Repeated exposure to an allergen can lead to a more serious reaction. Always check a product’s full list of ingredients to ensure your safety.

If you don’t know what you are allergic to, keep in mind you can be sensitive to any ingredient, not just the common allergens.

Trieste Red 2

The other important thing to note is that each color has different ingredients. So if you’ve been using one shade of color and decide to change your look, read through the new shade’s ingredients carefully. Don’t assume that it will be the same formula.

If, and only if, you have not had a severe reaction in the past to hair color, you can perform a patch test on your skin before coloring your hair. Madison Reed offers a 100% satisfaction guarantee, so you can do this with their Radiant Color Kits with confidence. If you are going to a salon, call at least 2 days in advance to ask if they offer this service. If they do, make sure they perform the test with the exact shades that they plan to use on your hair.

Palermo Black 2

If you have had a severe reaction in the past, please do not test on your own. It’s best in those cases to consult your personal physician, dermatologist, or allergist.

5. How do I perform a patch test?

Susan Roberts-Cooper, award-winning international colorist and director of research and development for Madison Reed, recommends these step-by-step instructions for a sensitivity skin patch test:

a. Mix a small amount of permanent color and a small amount of developer in a small non-metal bowl. You will be testing a very small patch of skin, so about 1” of color from the tube with a dime-sized dot of activator should be enough.

b. Clean small patch of skin (we recommend the inside of your arm, wrist, or behind your ear) thoroughly. Use rubbing alcohol if you are not sensitive to it.

c. Use a cotton swab to apply the color mixture to your skin.

d. Allow color mixture to dry. Then apply a small bandage to cover.

e. Leave on skin for 48 hours to test for sensitivities to the ingredients. If you sense any discomfort or sensitivity, remove and clean immediately.


Patch test must be done 48 hours (2 full days) before you plan to color your hair. Skin should not get wet during the 48 hours. For this reason, behind the ear is usually the best spot.

A visible change in the skin (redness or bumpiness) could signal sensitivity even if you do not feel physical discomfort. If you test on skin that is hard to see (like behind your ear), ask a friend to check at the end of 48 hours.

Learn more about Madison Reed and their line of hair color products that are healthier for your hair! With more than 30 shades of permanent hair color, semi-permanent gloss and root touch up, there is a color for you! Find your perfect hair color now!

Or check out our top 15 favorite Madison Reed hair color shades below.

Perugia Black

Perugia Black – Sapphire black with hints of blue

Positano Black

Positano Black – Black with hints of deep cool brown

Palermo Black

Palermo Black – Rich dark brown with hints of aubergine

Messina Brown

Messina Brown – Dark cool brown with a blend of cool ash

Venezia Brown

Venezia Brown – Natural dark brown with hints of gold

Napoli Brown

Napoli Brown – Natural deep warm brown with hints of gold

Torino Brown

Torino Brown – Deep brown with smoky undertones

Verona Brown

Verona Brown – Brown with warm auburn undertones
Trieste Red
Trieste Red – Deep reddish mahogany brown

Vesuvius Red

Vesuvius Red – Fiery auburn with coppery red

Genova Red

Genova Red – Auburn with hints of copper and gold

Como Light Brown

Como Light Brown – Light golden brown with hints of mahogany

Sicily Blonde

Sicily Blonde – Dark natural blonde with hints of gold

Tremiti Blonde

Tremiti Blonde – Natural golden blonde

Roma Blonde

Roma Blonde – Cool light blonde with smoky undertones




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Posted by on Feb 24, 2015 in Beauty and Fashion, Beauty Tips, Hair, Body and Skin Care | 0 comments

5 Japanese Geisha Detox Secrets

5 Japanese Geisha Detox Secrets

Japanese skin has long been envied by many women across the globe, thanks to its porcelain-like feel and appearance. It has long been known that Japanese women, even in the ancient times, have always had good skin, most especially the geisha.

But how exactly does a geisha keep her stunningly healthy skin? The secret, according to Tatcha founder Victoria Tsai, is detox.

Your “skin is a mirror of your mental and physical health,” Tsai said, as quoted by the New York Times. “I start from the inside out,” she adds, which only means that having great skin means a huge revamp — starting from what you eat and drink to how you take care of your skin.

Here are a few secrets to geisha-like skin spilled by Tsai, as noted in the New York Times report:

1. Stick to fish.

We know; it won’t be that easy given what you’re used to eating but there’s a reason why Tsai is suggesting such diet.

Fish is an excellent source of monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, says BBC Good Food. They “provide essential fatty acids which act as a natural moisturiser for your skin, keeping it supple. These fats also come packaged with a healthy dose of vitamin E (a vitamin many of us lack), which will help protect against free radical damage.”

Of course, it is still best to consult your nutritionist before going on any type of crash diet, this diet included.

2. Go to sleep early.

Guess which part of your body is reaping the benefits when you hit the sack early? You guessed it! Your skin. Daily Mail Online says that according to Geoff Wright, director of The Hair And Beauty Partnership in London, our skin actually has its own schedule. “From 8pm to 11pm is the time for hydration and stimulation, while 11pm to 3am is the time for nutrition and regeneration, and 3am to 5am is the time for resting,” explained Wright.

3. Green tea all the way!

The Gypsy Beauty has a very detailed write-up regarding green tea benefits. From flushing out toxins from your skin and body to stopping signs of premature aging, you’ll be amazed to know that matcha could be your new bestfriend. It is “especially good for clearing toxins from the system,” notes Tsai.

4. Take a daily bath.

Okay, this should be a no-brainer but for those still skeptical, leaning on the daily-bath-dries-out-your-skin premise, Tsai has a very good response to you. In the post, the Tatcha founder explains the Japanese way saying, “you clean yourself entirely before setting foot in the tub, then enjoy a long, relaxing soak in the warm water.” Try it out sometime!

5. Use skin-friendly products.

There are lots of skin products out there but we are placing our bets on Tatcha if you’re looking to have better skin. The brand uses only the best ingredients sourced from geisha beauty secrets written in the Capital Beauty and Style Handbook (Miyakofuzoku Kewaiden) she chanced upon in Kyoto.

See our favorite products below.


TATCHA Classic Rice Enzyme Powder – for Normal + Combination Skin

This creamy, water-activated enzyme powder effortlessly releases debris from skin, leaving it polished and baby soft in an instant. Optimally conditions skin to receive benefits of any treatment product used in conjunction with it. Functions as a 2-in-1 cleanser for those not wearing makeup. Made with pearl, nature’s skin conditioner.

6e4dfd05e58d8779b5d071b473c5db8f60b5aebe-p-kinu-cloth-gpTATCHA Pure Silk Polishing Face Cloth (5 pack)

Made from 100% pure silk, this cloth nourishes as it gently exfoliates, polishing away dull surface cells and leaving skin smooth and lustrous. Pairs with the Pure One Step Camellia Cleansing Oil or Polished Rice Enzyme Exfoliants.


TATCHA Original Aburatorigami

Removes excess oil and sweat without disturbing makeup or stealing moisture from the skin. A powder and primer alternative that improves the wear of makeup.

Discover beauty secrets of Japanese geisha for flawless, radiant skin. Begin with the Tatcha Discovery Kit for just $59 with free shipping.

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Posted by on Jan 10, 2015 in Beauty and Fashion, Beauty Tips, Hair, Body and Skin Care | 0 comments

New Year Skin Detox

New Year Skin Detox

Healthy Woman Drinking Water

A new year means a new you and what better way to welcome it than getting rid of all those unwanted stuff from the biggest part of you – your skin! Here’s a simple 4-step skin detox regimen by Abe’s Market which we’re sure everyone can follow.

Step #1 Sweat

This is a very effective way to eliminate toxins and poisons through the skin. Walk, run, do Pilates or hot yoga – work up a sweat on both Saturday and Sunday to purge those toxins.

Easy Yoga Kit

If you’re planning to do yoga, check out Wai Lana’s Easy Yoga Kit which already includes:

Metro Blue Yogi Mat™ (1/8″H x 24″W x 68″L)
Beginners and Toning DVDs

(Approx. 50 minutes each)
6-foot yoga strap (Color: Cornflower Blue)
6-month membership in Wai Lana’s online Relaxation Club

Even more, here are 7 detoxifying yoga poses you can try out if you’re already a yogi. If you’re still starting out, it is best to ask your instructor for advice.

Step #2 Exfoliation and Dry Skin Brushing

This removes the dead skin cells allowing the pores to breathe and detoxify more effectively. Do this step on Saturday to help stimulate the lymph system to clean itself and purge the toxins and poisons.

Loofah Set

This Loofah Package is a great way to help jumpstart the process. Using a natural loofah sponge increases circulation, giving your skin a healthy glow and putting you in a relaxed state of mind. Loofahs are gentle enough to be used every day. They’re a simple, wholesome way to rejuvenate your skin.

Step #3 Detox Bath

Detoxing through bathing is considered an ancient remedy and it can be done in the comfort of your home on Sunday. A detox bath helps the body eliminate toxins as well as absorbing the minerals and nutrients in the water. Common ingredients used in a detox bath are Epsom salt, baking soda, and essential oils.

Epsom Salts

Studies have shown that magnesium and sulfate are both readily absorbed through the skin, making Epsom salt baths an easy and ideal way to enjoy the amazing health benefits.

Jojoba Oil

Aura Cacia’s 100% pure vegetable oils are extracted from natural plant or botanical sources, such as almond kernels, grape seeds and jojoba fruit. In addition to their soothing and moisturizing properties, these oils are highly valued for their ability to nourish the skin with fatty acids, antioxidants, and natural vitamins.

Step #4 Organic Skin Care and Organic Cosmetics

Decreasing the number of synthetic substances entering the body is another way to help detoxify the skin. Let’s face it, our skin is constantly exposed to environmental pollutants and toxins.

Why add more with the use of cosmetics containing harmful ingredients such as parabens, petrochemicals, and synthetic fragrances? Instead, use certified organic skin care and cosmetics as an ongoing detoxifying treatment for your skin.

              Painted Earth Lipsticks 1

Check out Painted Earth Luxury Matte Lipsticks which glide on velvety smooth for a supple feel and pampers lips with softening properties such as Sodium Hyaluronic, Squalene and Vitamin E. It is highly pigmented, richly formulated and provides long-lasting wear, hydration, and color-stay.

Moisturizing Facial Mask

DN Unik’s Moisturizing Facial Mask is also worth the mention with a super hydrating combination of linseed oil, white lily oil, rose hip oil, witch-hazel hydrosol, aloe vera, shea butter and sesame oil.

Go ahead and try out this 4-step skin detox regimen now for a healthier and more youthful glow!

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Posted by on Jan 6, 2015 in Beauty and Fashion, Beauty Tips, Hair, Body and Skin Care | 0 comments

2015 Nail Trends

2015 Nail Trends


This year is going to be the year of toned-down nail colors and negative space mani!

According to Becky G, in a report by Twist, negative space manicure will be “huge” and the good news is that you don’t need to be a pro to get the edgy look!

Watch the short how-to in the video below and get the 2015 nail trend on you.


Basically, all you need is nail polish (one or two, depending on the look you want to pull off) and some tape – that’s it! The design, of course, can be as easy as a few swipes or as complicated as striking patterns.

See more negative space nails from Instagram and Twitter below.


Credits: @InstaGangnam/ Twitter



Credits: @SpikedStilettos/ Twitter



Credits: nails_by_cindy/ Instagram



Credits: idreamof_nails/ Instagram

Negative space nails have made it to the runways but the edgy look is not the only nail trend garnering attention. This year is also the time of understated nail colors such as creams and more toned-down, baby hues.


Shelly by Julep




Phyllis by Julep


Think Shelly and Phyllis from Julep. Shelly is a wintermint color with a crème finish while Phyllis is soft petal pink also in crème finish. Both nail polishes from Julep are made with the brand’s proprietary 5-free, vegan-friendly formula including strengthening Hexanal and antioxidant green coffee extract for stronger, harder and more conditioned nails in just two weeks.


Margit by Julep


Don’t forget to check out Julep’s Margit as frosted is also in this 2015! The shade is mushroom with pretty fine rose shimmer finish.


Geena by Julep


If you’re looking for more sparkle, check Geena – Rose Quartz, Julep’s color for January 2015. This gold-capped rose quartz full-coverage glitter is the January 2015 addition to the brand’s Birthstone Collection. Geena is named after Geena Davis: actress, writer, and women’s Olympic archery team semi-finalist born January 21.

Shop more quality and trending nail polish on Julep.com! Even better, become a Julep Maven today!Julep Beauty Inc.

Three hot shades in Julep Maven’s new Winter Escape Welcome Box await new subscribers. Not only does this limited edition welcome gift include three nail colors, it also includes a fan favorite beauty product bringing the value of the box to $58 – yours for only $12.49 and shipping is free.

A Maven beauty box subscription is one of the best values going and as a Julep Maven subscriber, get first access to trend setting colors and top-rated beauty products every month.

Get started now! Join Maven and get 50% off and FREE Shipping on your Winter Escape Welcome Box with code DEFROST or get your Welcome Box FREE when you pre-pay for your first three months and use the code DEFROSTFREE. Either way, you are going to LOVE being a Maven.

Find out more about how to become a Julep Maven here!

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