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All things beauty and then some. Andrea Claire has been a hairstylist and makeup artist for 23 years now. A Canadian based in Singapore since 2007, she has appeared on Asia's Next Top Model, Yahoo Asia, Canadian Idol, So Chic and more.

NASA Facials: The New Power Fix Generation

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By Andrea Claire · November 9, 2013 · 0 Comments ·

Billed as the no knife face-fit this NASA technology found at SKIN INC has zero downtime. I visited the Marina Bay Link location which falls in the business sector. Just as they claim the downtime countdown is zero. You walk out looking fresh as a daisy with the radiance of a Spring dew. Have a free lunch hour or a lull in the day of meetings? A perfect opportunity to zip in for some [light] therapy.

You can choose either the red or the blue light Power Fix facial.

Red light therapy (Photo rejuvenation): 

  • targets the signs of ageing by encouraging the skin to produce more collagen smoothing wrinkles, fine lines
  • Promotes radiance
  • Lightens age spots
  • Reduces the size of skin pores
  • Reduces dark circles and puffiness
  • Firms and smoothens skin

Blue light therapy:

  • Cleanses the skin of harmful bacteria that causes spots and pimples
  • Reduces inflammation
  • Prevents further breakouts
  • Reduces the size of skin pores
  • Minimizes scarring
  • Smoothes the texture of the skin

    I have a Baby Quasar which is your fountain of youth beauty gadget for light therapy at home.

*Facials that are based on this type of technology and RF technology are amazing for getting in deep into the dermal layers versus some facials that just work on the surface. Sure, all facials are lovely and relaxing but when you think about it as you are investing time and money, you may as well reap long-term benefits.*

Beauty Lust Haves || November 2013

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By Andrea Claire · November 8, 2013 · 0 Comments ·

Remember: Lust Haves because I love them and you MUST have them. See my faves recapped over the last year here.


Mat Velvet + Matifying Foundation $36.00 USD at Sephora

Make Up For Ever Mat Velvet+
Those who know me know that I'm pretty loyal to certain brand of foundation, but it's also part of my job to know what else is out there. I recently purchased this MUFE foundation in #30 aside from being a little too peachy on me, it is amazing - long-lasting, keeping the oils at bay. I'm not a fan of powder* so it's a nice balance having a liquid with a matte finish. There's cornstarch as one of the main ingredients which helps to re-absorbs oils. Mat Velvet+ is great for people who have oily skin, an oily t-zone or live in a humid climate, like me sweating in Singapore. I am lucky that at 42 years young, I have very minimal fine lines. I do find that this foundation accentuates the little I have so if you have fine lines to deep crevices, I would recommend that you use this on your oily bits (t-zone) and then choose a separate moisturizing foundation that is more forgiving on ageing skin.

*The biggest issue I have with powders is that it fills in fine lines, exaggerating them making you look older. Show of hands who wants to look older? Yeah 16 year old girls trying to get into a bar... you guys need to powder... a lot; go back to your rooms and get your homework done - trust me, you want to grow up fast but when you are grown up you want to turn the clocks back.

Blur Makeup Room in Toronto is everything to us pro makeup artists and beauty addicts. I bought this bdellium Pink Bambu 959 brush when I was in the TDOT teaching an editorial hair class - these vegan hairs are gorgeous. They feel so soft and delicate on the skin. I use it for blending foundation and powder on the skin.

A behind the scenes pic from a beauty shoot using my iPhone. Grace is a stunning Asian model with Ave. She has flawless skin (and dark hair - that's a wig)- book her.

Stila - magnificent metals - the payoff with these is insane. I'm still playing with texture. I find them a little difficult to blend the edges as they tend to hard stop but I've literally played with them only a few times. This above image has the Lavender on the lid and Titanium from crease to brow then I layered on some MAC pigments. These would look stunning as a simple liner too.


MOROCCANOIL® Treatment Light $16.50 USD at Nordstrom

The coveted Moroccanoil has a light version- it's been around for a while but I just found it here in Singapore at Wheelock Place (many products are hard to find here).  I prefer to use the light version pretty much on anybody because it's not heavy. If you've ever complained about having dry slightly frizzy hair this product is for you. It's perfect for hair living in tropical conditions since we're always under the hot sun; add in swimming - chlorine is a cuticle killer.


Beauty Blender - The Original Beauty Blender Double (N/A) - Beauty $28.95 USD at Zappos Couture

I have decided to revisit the Beauty Blender - amazing for blending and to get slightly heavier coverage for bad skin. Stipple foundation or concealer over blemishes/acneaic skin for a beautiful blend. Avoid the grocery store knockoffs because the sponges can have a slightly rougher texture. 

CLEAN Organic Brush Shampoo. sigh Many models still complain to me that artists don't clean their brushes. I worked on one model in Singapore who said to me excitedly "OH! You're the famous one who uses brush cleaner!" Photographers have told me that many models express to them how much they adore that I take care of their skin. I'm sure that I am not the only one here in Singapore that is mindful of the skin of the person in my beauty chair but for those who aren't: tsk tsk! [That's me virtually finger wagging you] 

This brush shampoo conditions and cleans. You swirl your dampened bristles into the solid, create a little foam then rinse under the tap.

*Obviously on set prepping many faces in one day we need to use a quick drying cleaner like Ben Nye or Cinema Secrets but these can be harsh especially synthetic hairs. I personally have a gazillion brushes so I tend to set aside the brushes I used on one person and pull out clean ones then wrap my day with washing all of my brushes preparing for the next shoot day.

What are your faves of the moment??

Lipstick shades of yesteryear that still influence today's beauty

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By Andrea Claire · November 6, 2013 · 0 Comments ·
Lipstick sure has made its mark in the various eras and we definitely have seen a major lipstick comeback but then again, we could say that these iconic lip shades never go out of style.

"You know how to whistle don't you?" Lauren Bacall, To Have and Have Not, 1944

  
50s RED LIPS - Elizabeth Taylor. Audrey Hepburn. Grace Kelly. Many screen starlets come to mind for the 50s but no one better than Marilyn Monroe.

Get the look with:


Noir Collection Lipstick - Rouge Noir $24.00 at DERMSTORE


60s - NUDE LIPS Brigitte Bardot. Twiggy - known for her dolly lashes paired with a pale nude lipstick

Get the look with:

Tom Ford Beauty Lip Color, Blush Nude $49.00 by Tom Ford at Neiman Marcus



70s - DISCO FROSTED Anjelica Houston and Farrah Fawcett. Two totally different looks but with such iconic beauty impact. Anjelica - the exotic beauty vs  Farrah - skate betty /girl next store both with a hint of gloss and frost.

Get the look with:

Noir Collection Lipstick - Nude Noir $24.00 at DERMSTORE you can add a clear coat of MAC Lipglass to get your disco on

80s - HIGH IMPACT PIGMENTS Iman Supermodel. Cyndi Lauper. Madonna. Sure bubblegum pinks come to mind for the 80s but we did have a rollover from 70s punk - a vampy matte 

Get the look:

MAC Dominate


90s - RED LIPS Gwen Stefani brought new life to the iconic red lipstick

Get the look:

Bite Beauty in Tannin
 
 
**My biggest tip for wearing lipstick: after lipstick application form an 'O' with your lips around one finger then slide it out which keeps your lipstick off your teeth. Just don't do this in front of a date as it may send the wrong message.

[This post was originally sent to ELLE.com to use for pro-tips]

VLOG || #AZMondayMakeover sponsored by Luxola: Annia

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By Andrea Claire · November 4, 2013 · 0 Comments ·
 
*If you don't see a video above here, please refresh the post title

This week's azMondayMakeover is Annia, a risk director for an investment bank.



We thank Annia for taking a risk with us!




Never be afraid of a colourful palette. The best way to tackle an overwhelming number of colours is to simplify. Decide on your look before jumping in brush first. As you can see - I decided to give Annia an edgy tight-lined eye with dark colours.

Products I used to create Annia's look:

Dr Jart+ Pore medic recover pre-base
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everyone needs a primer to suit their specific needs whether colour correcting, smoothing pores etc

Face atelier Ultra Foundation using #1 and #3 
-
apply the lighter colour under the eyes and where you want to subtly highlight

BLOOM secret weapon concealer kit
-for blemish touchups and precise correcting

On Annia's cheeks I used a little bit of a Zoeva bronzer into the cheekbone hollows, along the jawline - essentially any place you want to add sculpture and shape and then lightly buffed the cheeks to blend out the colour a little



Zoeva 88 eyeshadow palette

In the eye crease use a medium to light brown colour, more of a neutral shade to create shape.
Apply the crease with the eye open looking directly into the mirror which works on most women. Different eye shapes will have a different need for crease placement and as we age our eyes tend to become a little hooded and therefore you need to create a crease. This way of applying the crease also helps with Asian eyes or deep set eyes
 



For the dramatic tight lining I used a mix of black shadow mixed with a deep shimmery bronze applied with Sigma Beauty Waterline Liner and then filling in the waterline with an eye pencil.

*I LOVE this Sigma Beauty brush - truly a must have!

Magnifibres brush on false eyelashes and a black mascara
- these fibres really build the lashes 
-apply a coat of mascara, fibres then another coat of mascara

I applied Bloom's Coy on her lips
- I love this because it's a product you can use on your cheeks and your lips
-choose a lip liner close to the lip shade you're using

**TIP: As we age our lip line naturally fades so definition is key for a strong lip shape



We chose the final after shot with Annia's own hair loose and down but I wanted you to see how easy it is to play with texture and hair pieces. This is a screen shot but definitely watch the video for more tips! 

I used Rahua volumizing spray um... for volume *wink* and O&M Surf Spray for added texture.

-blowout hair with a volumizing spray not only focused on the roots. When you apply a volume enhancing product throughout the hair shaft you get the benefits all over.
-spray with a little bit of beach spray which gives the hair a little bit of texture so it's not so flat not so smooth, you want the texture - that's chic
-section the hair above the ears towards just below the crown and wrap a piece of hair around the base as if it were a ponytail, adding a couple pins to lock the hair in place
-continue to do in as many sections as you would like and feel free to wrap some track hair extensions around the base of each section to give it length and added thickness
-I prefer using natural hair versus synthetic hair because synthetic hair doesn't have the same kind of texture, you are limited with synthetics as cannot use heat
-synthetic hair also tends to look artificially shiny so it doesn't blend in well when taking photos or frankly, even just in daily life

**TIP: If you don't have the budget for real hair dull down the synthetic hair using dry shampoo, but DON'T attempt to heat style as it will melt.

Want to participate? Email me, Andrea Claire, with the subject line #azMondayMakeover

All products for the #azMondayMakeovers in November are sponsored by


In collaboration with:


**Why AZMondayMakeovers? I feel that as a woman in the beauty industry for 23 years and counting that I owe it to you to show honest beauty without retouching.

Our industry does have an element of fantasy especially when we are using 17-21 year old young ladies in campaigns targeting the 30+ or the body types 000 to US size 6. I will never stop participating in the fantasy side of fashion and beauty but reality isn't so bad either.

Everyone is beautiful - at least on the outside; it's your actions that show you what beauty lies within. 

xo
Andrea Claire



 

BEAUTY APP! Clear Shampoo #NothingToHide

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By Andrea Claire · November 1, 2013 · 0 Comments ·



In search of the perfect selfie...


I was so excited to work on this project for CLEAR - really, what hair & makeup artist wouldn't be? :)

Featured model: Thais Garavello

Hair & makeup: Andrea Claire assisted by Sage Dakota

Photographer: Scott A. Woodward

Director: Mike Rogers

Produced by: UglyD.com 

An amazing team to work with! Thanks all!!

More info on the app:

CLEAR proudly presents it’s FIRST EVER innovative, customizable photo app designed to help you take flawless shots whenever you want, wherever you are. You don't need to be an expert to take a great self-portrait, Clear has partnered up with a celebrity photographer to share his secrets on how you can get that flawless headshot.
Want to look perfect from any angle? Want that flawless profile pic you can use on Facebook? This app guides you every step of the way to achieve that flawless headshot.
Once you have that perfect snap, share it on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram. With CLEAR, you have nothing to hide!

Get flawless selfies and look great in every photo with these unique features:
• Customizable settings which you can personalize to your specific face shape
• Intuitive tips that respond to the shape of your face, camera angles, and even lighting conditions!
• Step-by-step instructions to get the perfect headshot
• 3 flattering filters to make you even more gorgeous!
• A simple crop tool to zoom in on your stunning face
• Create fun collages with the multi-frame feature
• View other flawless headshots in the Gallery
• Post and share on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram

In-App Extras!
Unlock awesome tips from our celebrity photographer on taking flawless headshots.

Win a photo shoot with a celebrity photographer!
Download the app now and submit your perfect shot to win!

Exciting news to share!!! The next #azMondayMakeover series will be sponsored by Luxola!

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By Andrea Claire · October 28, 2013 · 0 Comments ·

If you don't see a video above here, please refresh the post title.

Luxola, the online beauty boutique
is now sponsoring the #azMondayMakeover series for the month of November that Zurina Bryant and I are doing.

We are thrilled about this new partnership. Luxola carries many of the beauty products that I have been using in my kit for years as well as some the newly released and coveted of global beauty junkies!


So tune in next week for the premiere of the #azMondayMakeover sponsored by Luxola to see what I do with this treasure trove of beauty and Zurina's before and after shots of our latest lovely lady.

*Want to take part? Email me, Andrea, here with the subject line #azMondayMakeover and a recent pic of yourself.

Wondergel relief for osteoarthritis sufferers!

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By Andrea Claire · October 25, 2013 · 0 Comments ·


It was a weird invite for me to get, a medical device press luncheon. I did email the pr company back who invited me explaining that this was not in my realm of writing but I would love to accept the invite if that offer still stood. Frankly I think they made a mistake and was hoping I'd decline; but considering my autoimmune disease there was no way I was missing the opportunity!

Flexiseq is a new topical gel targeting pain in osteoarthritis sufferers. You may know that since suffering through chikungunya in 2008 I am now laden with a reactive arthritis in my hips, wrists and ankles. I take a lot of pills twice daily.

The good news is FLEXISEQ does not contain any pharmaceutical active ingredients which means there isn't any risk of interacting with medication you may be taking for your pain or any other ailment.
 
As when I'm given any opportunity to speak I could hear my inner voice telling me to stop monopolizing the conversations but - I rarely listen to that inner voice - cranky old thing. I was intrigued because well - this is what I need.

The lunch at Catalunya was an intimate lunch with health writers who clearly had experience writing these pieces. Joan Chew, a journalist for The Straits Times Mind Your Body had some amazing questions for Michael Earl COO of Pro Bono Bio, the makers of Flexiseq; I look forward to catching her piece written by a real journalist. ;) 

Professor Herbert Kellner, Munich, one of the panelists at the BVDA awards said, “More than 50% of people over 65 have already developed OA and its prevalence is as high as 90% in people over 75. Thus OA is of enormous social and economic significance.” [source]

As a sufferer of OA, I am often showered with tips from people whose family members suffer from it too - but their relatives are typically grandparents or a great aunt or uncle. My knee jerk reaction is always wanting to tell this people to sod off because sadly, as it would suggest this illness tends to hit the elderly and I'm the ripe age of 42.

But what about us younguns who are suffering? I found it interesting to learn the glucosamine and chondroitin only have a 4% success rate! And this is only if the two are taken together. Using glucosamine topical gel? Apparently that itself is bogus and more of a placebo effect.

Flexiseq has zero interaction with other drugs because it's not a drug. The gel was originally invented to be a carrier aiding in the penetration of a drug however the testing resulted in the control (only consisting of the carrier) having the best results. The birth of Flexiseq. It works physically vs chemically. It can be compared to a Synvisc (hyaluronic acid) however Synvisc is an injectable lubricant that is painful, expensive and needing to be done often with the guide of ultrasound - at least for the hips - I've had this done in both of my hips.

FLEXISEQ has an innovative mode of action due to its use of Sequessome Technology and its convenient gel formulation enables patients to self-administer FLEXISEQ topically to the affected joint. The Sequessome™ vesicles contained within are proven to enter the synovial joint after application and increase phospholipid levels in the synovial fluid where they are known to be depleted in joints affected by OA. This physical, mode of action reduces the pain, (in phase III clinical trials, as effectively as the frequently prescribed oral drug medicine - celecoxib) and also improves joint mobility, thereby giving easier movement to patients.  [source]

Flexiseq is about to release in Singapore and there are talks about its release in Canada. The US may get relief in one to two years.
 
*Note: I suffer from reactive arthritis from my chikungunya -I have deterioration in both hip joints, and cysts that seem to multiply with each yearly MRI -  osteoarthritis - yay me!  Prior to getting this illness I had zero health issues. I worked out at the gym 2-3 times at the gym and once a week with a kick-boxing trainer. So you can bet when the whole 'what's your excuse' hit the airwaves I was a little sour too but mainly because I am unwell and depressed. I know this wondergel is not a miracle-gel - I do have reasonable expectations plus two tubes to try. Fingers-crossed this gives me some relief.

My medical journey.

How much is a life worth? 3.50 The Movie

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By Andrea Claire · October 25, 2013 · 0 Comments ·
 

If you don't see the trailer here, please refresh the post.

Last night I went to the gala premiere of 3.50 The Movie. A story that follows an American documentary filmmaker who ventures deep into the underbelly of Phnom Penh to find a young Cambodian girl who was abducted from her village. She crosses paths with various other lives that are affected by the city’s harsh rules of survival.

The acting at times was a little cringe-worthy and the writing a little weak but sadly, although a movie, this is based on true events and knowing that this is many young girls' life stories the harsh reality carries the weakness in the script and acting. 

What seemed all too real were the scenes where the young girls are being examined by the doctor who confirms their virginity; when one girl is beaten for not being a virgin and then stitched up to fake virginity - these scenes. Horrifying. A reality in the depths of human trafficking.

What I learned from the movie was that many of the young girls are bought and sold for their virginity - $500 to $800. Many men believe that sex with a virgin will cure their AIDS. After a young girl's virginity is taken - sex with her can cost as low as $3.00. $3.00!!!! Or as the movie title says: $3.50.

Recently I learned about a girl living in the slum communities of Phnom Penh where I teach, 15 years old, HIV positive. Now, I have no background story as to how she contracted the disease but one could certainly come to a conclusion knowing this horrifying fact.

Please have a look at what I've been doing in Phnom Penh.

Human Trafficking. We can't ignore it. It needs to end.

Because of Google Analytics I can see keywords that bring some of you to my blog. Some of the words I see "how to get a Cambodian girl for sex" or "buying a girl for sex in Cambodia" or "where to find prostitutes in Cambodia"

To those men looking to buy sex in Cambodia:

The little girl whose virginity you bought? She was torn from her mother. Sold by a family member. An uncle. An Aunt. Her father.

The little girl that you are about to have sex with does not want to be there with you.

That little girl could be your daughter or your sister.

You are destroying lives.

Join the fight.

Empower these girls. Educate them. Teach them a trade that keeps them home and safe where they belong.


While I was looking for the film stills I came across the photography work of Thomas Cristofoletti who does have some film stills but this powerful image is part of his Blood Sugar series.

"N. T. even if he’s just 9 years old, helps his parents counting and making bunches with the sugar canes. He’s from Bang Village – about 2 hours drive away from the plantations, where he lives with his other 2 brothers. His family decided to start working in the plantations as they suffering a very strong drought and they are not able to cultivate their lands. Sugar cane plantation of Srei Ambel (Koh Kong – Cambodia). 16 Jan. 2013" © Thomas Cristofoletti / Ruom

Find Thomas on Twitter.

3.50 The Movie on Facebook

Another chilling reality Sold the Movie




Makeovers recapped || #azmondaymakeover

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By Andrea Claire · October 21, 2013 · 0 Comments ·

What woman doesn't love to play dress up?

Celebrity profile photographer Zurina Bryant and I decided to start a blogged Monday makeover series for the fun of it, beauty tip sharing and just downright fun. This would have been week 4 but we decided to do a little call-out and a recap.

Our previous ladies with their before and afters.

Hair and makeup by me, Andrea Claire. Photography by Zurina.

The call-out: Want to participate? We want YOU too!! The deal is: we get to play and post and you get a nice pic or 2 and some lovely tips. We are in the talks of sponsorship so if that works out maybe you'll get a goodie bag too  - but don't quote me on it.

To participate please email us here with AZMonday Makeover in the subject line.

VLOG || #AZMondayMakeover: Vivian Pei

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By Andrea Claire · October 14, 2013 · 0 Comments ·
Welcome to week three of the AZMondayMakeover! You can recap the first two here. 

  There is a video above here. Don't see it? Please click on the post title.

Today's lovely lady is Vivian Pei. Vivian is a whiz in the kitchen. No really. She has an F&B consultancy business, does recipe development, teaches cooking, food stylist, organizes food tours.... Viv - am I leaving anything out?




before and after photos by Zurina Bryant

Now Vivian's before looks way more frazzled than one would expect. In all fairness she did just arrive after a frantic day of work and errands and we plunked her down without any real warning for her pic. (I don't even think she glanced in a mirror upon arrival) We let her open a bottle of champagne prior to sitting into my beauty chair - hey, we can be nice!

On Vivian I used:


Prep + Prime BB Beauty Balm Compact SPF 30 in Medium Plus $30.00 USD at M·A·C mainly under the eyes for added brightening.


 Followed by FACEatelier foundation in #7 (Tan)


Benefit fakeup hydrating crease-control concealer, medium $24.00 USD at Macy's

Laura Mercier Mineral Finishing Powder $34.00 USD at Nordstrom

Too Faced Chocolate Soleil Matte Bronzing Powder $30.00 USD at Ulta

NARS 'Pro Prime' Smudgeproof Eyeshadow Base $24.00 USD at Nordstrom 

This eyeshadow primer is clear and allows a smooth base for shadow. I applied it from lash line to brow bone.

Benefit creaseless cream eyeshadow in R.S.V.P, $20.00 USD at Macy's 

Applied solely on Vivian's lid.

Laura Mercier Lustre Eye Colour USD at Nordstrom 

With Vivian's eyes open, I applied LM Lustre Eye Colour in African Violet into the crease - pretty sure the image is of Chocolate and not African Violet but it shows the same shimmery quality.

Maybelline EyeStudio Baked Color Pearls Marbleized Eyeshadow Persuasive Plum $6.79 USD at Walgreens

I applied a sheer layer of this marbleized eyeshadow. I love these shadows! The way they pick up light is pretty and Hello! Cheap and cheerful!!

Bobbi Brown Long-Wear Gel Eyeliner $23.00 USD at Macy's

I used a deep plum / black that is no longer available. Sorry Dudettes.

Lip Lacquer $25.00 USD at NARS Cosmetics

I applied foundation onto Vivian's lips which isn't necessary - and after hearing what Vivian had to say (watch the video) about her lips I wish i hadn't chosen to take them down so much but she still pulls off this look nicely and hey - it's not a lip tattoo. ;)

For Vivian's hair:


I blew out Vivian's hair with Marc Anthony bye bye frizz blowout cream, tonged in some waves, pinned one side back and then set the final look with Original Mineral Original Queenie.

CHI Air Tex Tourmaline Ceramic 1" Curling Iron-Red $60.00 at jcpenney

I gave Vivian what I have dubbed as 'The Hollywood Mullet' (sleek on one side; sexy, wavy party on the other)

This is the CHI iron closest to what I could find to my vintage CHI with the Marcel arm. sigh I m not a fan of the wands nor the spring armed irons. 




Let's talk about Vivian's dress by Lion Earl! I freakin' love this Singaporean label (I have yet to own one). Jewellery supplied by Singapore-based Killari.

find the team online:

Zurina Bryant

and me, Andrea Claire 


**Sure, we could make everyone over all slick and Vogue-y but I don't know anyone who can maintain that daily. Zurina and I wanted to show you - the feminine masses, that you can look great on your own terms without photoshop and scalpels.

Want to participate? Send us an email with  your photo and azMondayMakeover in the subject line to me and Z.

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