How I got 2019’s most requested hairstyle

Back in the ’90s, women were going to salons and asking for “The Rachel,” an iconic cut modelled after Jennifer Aniston’s girl-next-door Friends character Rachel Green. It was of a lobbish length with spunky face-framing wisps. Cute! Sassy, even! If I was in my 20s back then, it’s the cut I would have asked for. But now, in my late 20s, I ask for “The Amal.”

I’ve been fascinated by Amal Clooney’s blowout for months now. Last year, Vogue pointed out that Clooney had the “hardest working hair in New York City.” I agree! And I can’t take my eyes off it. The international human rights lawyer’s mane is a rich shade of volcanic obsidian, or a bar of Ghirardelli chocolate. It goes against gravity—the waves are defined and sculpted, but floating. If Clooney was stranded at sea, her hair would be her life jacket. In the world of political hair, Clooney is an outlier. I’m used to the shielding bob of Hillary Clinton or Elizabeth Warren’s helmet cut. Or the normal-girl hair of Sarah Huckabee Sanders. As we’ve written about before, there are unspoken hair rules for women in politics, though, they’re changing, as is the conversation around beauty in politics as a whole. Back in January, congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez broadcasted a breakdown of her skincare routine on Instagram to her millions of followers. As for Clooney? She takes a coyer approach, and her large hair is, well, full of secrets.

Julien Farel Salon on Park Avenue and 61st Street is the place to get this goddess hair, something I noticed immediately upon entering. Even at 9.30am in the morning, I was flanked by all types of women with that same huge hair: Older Upper East Side women with blooming tresses; young moms with Brazilian-supermodel layers. I met the storied creator of them all, Julien Farel, a beautiful Frenchman with the jawline of a Grecian statue and a great handshake. He sat me down in a swivelling chair, unraveled my tangled post-gym bun, and began gesturing around my head like an orchestra conductor, explaining the steps to get Clooney’s hair. “Start with the foundation,” he began. To achieve this hair, one has to focus on the scalp, which for Farel, is the key to unearthing and maintaining red carpet—or courtroom—hair. Farel noted that prep is a huge step. My hair would be twice-washed with a sulphate-free shampoo created by Farel himself that gives you an icy-clean sensation the moment it hits the head. It comes out soft to the touch, too. With wet hair, I sat in the chair and Farel began to work. “She’s using big rollers all the time to get the volume and the volume in the right places,” Farel explained. “This is a more glam look than a beach-wave look. The younger generation is about flat iron and twisting it with their fingers. But there is no other way to keep the volume [than rollers].” Whether they’re Velcro or hot, rollers will be your best friend to get that pumped-up Clooney hair. Farel would blow dry my hair and then roll it up in a fist-size Velcro roller. By the time he was finished placing them all, I resembled a ’50s housewife, or Sputnik. But when he undid them? Va va voom. I was transformed. The volume wasn’t just at the ends of my hair, it was at the top of my head—something I had never experienced.

By the time I had left the salon, my hair was huge. I mean big. It was a lush waterfall. Having big hair like that makes a person feel not just manicured, but confident—and, yes, super hot. Could I take on the UN? Of course not. Did I look super amazing? Yes, I did. I can only hope Amal would approve.

Tips to deal with frizzy hair

Frizzy hair is a never-ending problem. It is caused by lack of moisture in the hair and humidity adds more to the suffering. But don’t worry!

Mahika Yadav and Sargam Dhawan shared a few tips that will make you combat frizz like a pro and eliminate all the bad hair days.

* Use a straightening iron with bristles or teeth: The teeth when combined with heat leaves your hair smooth and shiny. Use straighter brush which does exactly that and also sets the temperature that is right for your hair.

* Use Leave-in defrizzing balm: Go for Leave in a defrizzing balm. This is a quick and go-to method where you don’t have to worry about washing your hair. It helps to easily tame your hair and maintain sleek and stylish hairstyles.

* Try keratin treatment: If you want something that is time-saving and long-lasting keratin treatment is perfect for you. A method that is resistant to any weather be it summer, winter or monsoon, it will make your hair straight sleek and party ready. So say Adios! To the frizz.

* Check on your food intake: What you take inside of your body shows its results outside. Having a protein, fiber and vitamin rich diet is essential for healthy and smooth hair. It helps in stimulating the natural keratin already present in the hair. So, make sure you get enough goodness of these elements for healthy and frizz free hair.

* Use a shampoo that is sulfate and alcohol-free: Sulfate dries out your hair strands which causes hair to soak up the humidity in the air like a sponge and thus causing static in the hair which makes it frizzy. Same goes for alcohol. Alcohol swells up the hair cuticles thus causing frizziness. Instead, use products which are rich in glycerine and sulfate and are alcohol-free.

* Use a hydrating hair mask: Giving your hair a special treatment once a week is essential, it helps fill in any holes in the hair shaft that soak up outside moisture, which in turn makes your hair frizzy, use something which is rich in glycerine and proteins which will help to battle the frizz.

* Air dry your hair 90 per cent before blow drying: Instead of going berserk to dry your hair right after you shower with a towel and then hair dryer, gently pat it with a towel and let 90 per cent of your hair air dry. Rubbing it harshly can cause friction in hair leading it to static and hence frizz up, once you start drying it, the condition worsens, leading you to frizz.

Look inside historic beauty of renovated gate house in Co Down

Dating back to 1860, the house enchants with its period beauty and has undergone major refurbishment in recent years with a new extension creating a wealth of accommodation.

The quaint style which makes gate houses so sought after can be found alongside clean, modern, luxurious finishes.

The house has three en suite bedrooms, a studio, formal dining room with butler’s pantry, open plan living space and kitchen, a drawing room, boot room and utility room.

The enviable position along a private road offers a tranquil setting which is handy to Carnalea railway halt and close North Down’s popular coastal paths.

There are beautiful views from every aspect including breathtaking sea views from upstairs.

A sun porch leads into a welcoming hallway which features a lovely retro style radiator, a sign of the attention to detail that has gone into creating this special home.

The first bedroom is just off the hallway and harks back to the origins of the house with a cast iron fireplace and cornice ceiling. The en suite shower room is finished with porcelain wall and floor tiles.

The drawing room is a bright and calming space with built in book cases and a maple floor.

There is a rear hallway and a fabulous feature is a minstrel gallery with glass balustrade overlooking a large living room with exposed feature Belfast brick wall and cast iron wood burning stove.

A natural well with glazed floor cover is an unusual find in this room which also has French doors opening to a rear patio.

This room opens into the superb kitchen which is high spec all the way with hand painted bespoke units.

There is a Fischer and Paykel stainless steel range oven, a six ring gas hob, a double oven and warming drawers, an integrated dishwasher and a casual dining peninsula.

Off the kitchen is a utility kitted out with the same quality units.

Off the minstrel gallery is a studio with bi-fold glass doors creating another beautiful bespoke feature in this part of the house.

The elegant dining room is finished with a parquet wood block floor and features a walk-in butler’s pantry.

The master bedroom looks out over Belfast Lough and comes with an en suite dressing area as well as a luxury shower room with twin wash hand basins and bidet.

The third bedroom also has charming views and a modern en suite.

Outside there is an enclosed rear courtyard garden with paved patio areas, raised flowerbeds and a raised seating area.

5 of the best chocolate experiences in Belfast

If you’re looking for the ultimate chocolate fix in Belfast, then it’s worth checking out a few of the places below for a seriously good chocolate experience.1. Co Couture

Co Couture’s freshly prepared chocolates are a work of art and lie on display at its pretty city centre shop near City Hall.

A few of its chocolates have even picked up awards over the years, including the store’s Irish Whisky Truffle which scooped 3 Gold stars in the Great Taste Awards in 2008, and a Dark Chocolate with Biscuit & Cranberry which received 2 Gold stars. The store also hosts a regular Beyond Extraordinary Chocolate Dessert Club if you’re really wanting to treat yourself.

2. Hotel Chocolat

With a semi-new cafe lying opposite City Hall, Hotel Chocolat new home is a decadent chocolate experience with pretty views. Whether it’s slurping on one of the shop’s epic hot chocolates or nibbling on its to-die-for chocolates, the cafe will make a perfect pitstop when in town.

3. Al Gelato

As summer approaches, picking up a delicious ice-cream will no doubt be top of the list and, for any chocoholics out there, the Nutella tap at Al Gelato will seriously up your ice-cream game. Choose from a selection of ridiculous ice-cream flavours or, if ice-cream isn’t your thing (*says no one ever*), then the waffles or crepes are a great alternative.

4. St. George’s Market

St. George’s Market needs to be mentioned in its entirety given the market hosts so many great food stalls selling handcrafted and artisanal chocolate-based goodies. This includes Joy’s Artisan Foods, The Crepe Makers, and Check Out My Buns for gluten-free treats.

5. Guilt Trip

Not only is the look and feel of Guilt Trip very aesthetically pleasing, its doughnuts are pretty incredible too. Choose from a mouth-watering selection of doughnuts including a recent “Chocolate Hazelnut Creamieux” addition… However, make sure to get there early as doughnuts are known to sell out quickly!

Keep acne at bay

Get rid of acne by washing your face and hands regularly and use tea tree-based products to regulate sebum production and reduce blemishes, suggest experts.

Sargam Dhawan and Sharad Kulkarni have shared some tips to get rid of acne organically:

* To keep bacteria at bay, wash your face and hands regularly with the natural antibacterial alpina and tea tree cleansing wash. It contains essential tea-tree oil with a soft, foaming formula that gently and effectively cleanses normal to oily skin while helping to regulate sebum production and reduce blemishes. It is made will all natural and organic ingredients.

* It is very important to moisturise your skin. Opt for juniper and yarrow moisturiser or aloe and lavender moisturiser as it will also have vitamin E that helps to replenish the moisture to avoid skin dehydration.

* Ayurvedic medication, on the other hand provides a more holistic approach. Bitter gourd juice intake every day acts as a rakta shodhaka (blood purifier) as its anti-bacterial action helps to flush out the free radicals out of the body thus keeping the skin clean and clear through internal cleansing.

* Start your morning with lots of water. This is known to push toxins out of the body relieving body from the harmful effects of toxins. Toxins are drained out of the body through sweat, urine and bowel. Once the body is detoxed the skin gets the glow. Apart from this fresh fruit juices and other natural sources of fluids are appreciated.

Stunning Wedding Dresses For Your Big Day

Elfenbensvit Organzapåse Juvel Balklänning Golvläng BröllopsklänningarSome brides will take ages shopping for a stunning wedding dress. It is a task that can be tedious, especially when looking for a design that is simply unique. It can equally be tedious to find a designer to put together a gown that will beat any other. However, nowadays, it is not as difficult to find the dress of your dreams. This is on account of online professionals offering wedding solutions. Most are stores and factories dealing with wedding dresses and outfits for different events. These stores come with their own advantages.

They offer one-stop solutions:

By one-stop we mean you can get everything under one roof. Along with your bridal gown, you can shop for bridesmaid dresses too. It falls much cheaper and is easier when you choose to source the outfits from one place as compared to going to different designers to have them done. This way, the maids can all agree on one design to suit all or different designs with one color to fit your wedding theme perfectly. The choices will depend on the plans that you have in place.

The use top fabrics:

The online factories work with top quality fabrics as well as threads. They also settle only for the rich and vibrant colors that add to the happy mood of the wedding day. The rich textures and beautiful sheens they have for every material will make the perfect gowns and dresses for your needs. You do not have to worry about quality when going for their services.

They offer elegant embroidery and beadwork:

Embroidery and beadwork are the accents that make a wedding gown stand out. Most of the beading is usually on the waistline or shoulders. Attention is given to every dress with the pearls and beads to gain a classic elegant dress at the end of the day. Details are attended to with the embroidery to give patterns that give life to the dress. There is plenty of exquisite embroidery to choose from most of which are done by hand by professionals.

The offer perfect appliqués and ruching:

Ruching detail will not only leave the dress looking stunning, but will falter your figure. Professional tailors do it by hand to achieve the perfect fullness and shape. The appliqués are also handmade to give extra detail to the dress. They are arranged in designs that are simply breathtaking to make your wedding dress stand out.

They offer fast and safe deliveries:

This is one of the biggest advantages of ordering from online factories and stores. Most will offer free shipping to your place of residence. The deliveries are made safe and secure and you can be sure to get your dress in the perfect condition. They also offer safe reliable payment methods enabling you choose and purchase wedding dresses that you find most ideal for your big day.