Mother’s Day Special: All About Mom

By Nora Heston Tarte

Answers to those burning questions, tips for enjoying “me time,” and more

It’s Mother’s Day, and as our gift to you we’ve got answers to some of moms’ biggest questions including makeup tips, skincare secrets, tips for finding alone time, and more!


Beauty

How can I use makeup to look younger?

Believe it or not, this is one of those situations where less is more. Wearing too much makeup can age you. Instead pick a few of the right products to achieve that youthful glow. First step, switch out powder makeup for liquid. The caked-on powder can amplify wrinkles, while liquid helps smooth things out. A good primer can also help makeup go on smooth.

Keep these products on hand: blush, mascara, white eyeliner, and a light eye shadow or highlighter. A little rosy color on the apples of cheeks helps mimic a healthy glow. That white eyeliner and highlighter helps your eyes look bigger and more awake (not like you stayed up all night with a screaming toddler). Too much dark eye makeup can actually make eyes look smaller, which isn’t good at any age.

Can I prevent gray hair?

As we age, both men and women need to accept the idea that gray hair is going to come. Enjoy as many years of natural hair color as you can before those monthly salon trips become mandatory!

There are however some theories on foods and vitamins that could prevent—or at least stave off—gray hairs. For example, eat more Indian food. Curry could have ingredients that help fight grays. Other options include chewing on curry leaves or opting for hair products that include curry as an ingredient.

Shellfish is another option. The iodine and copper in shellfish are good for skin and nails. Want a topical solution? Women’s Fitness posted an article that suggested scalp massages with butter made from cow’s milk could help your hair keep its pigmentation thanks to some enzymes in the butter.

If that doesn’t work, give in to the salon. Make it fun by experimenting with new colors. Or, embrace the gray. Aren’t young girls dying their hair gray now, anyway?


Skin Care

What is the best product I can use to reduce signs of aging?

Sunscreen! Sunscreen offers more benefits than any other skincare product. Instead of reducing signs of aging, sunscreen actually prevents skin issues that make everyone look older because too much sun exposure can dry out skin, cause discoloration, and lead to fine lines and wrinkles or even that crepey-feeling skin you’ll dread.

Aside from sunscreen invest in two good moisturizers, one for wearing overnight and another for daytime to wear under makeup. Eye cream is also a must—and no, it isn’t the same thing as a facial moisturizer.

I’m over these stretch marks and OTC creams aren’t working, what can I do?

Unfortunately there is no easy cure-all for stretch marks. They seem to just linger for many women, while others seem genetically blessed and never develop them at all. If coconut oil and other natural remedies haven’t helped, there are more intense solutions.

Laser removal of stretch marks is possible. Using high-energy light, the appearance of stretch marks can be minimized over several treatments. The color of your stretch marks determines which type of laser will benefit you most, so make sure to go in for a consultation before committing to the procedure.


Mental Health

I need a break! How can I find me time without relying on my spouse?

Look, whether you are a single mom or your spouse is struggling to find alone time, too, raising kids doesn’t have to be a two-person job. Invite more people to help with child rearing—after all, it takes a village, right?

If a grandparent or aunt or uncle lives nearby, this may be the best person to ask for a little reprieve. Whether it is date night, girl’s night out, or even a chance to go to the grocery store without your personal shadow, these are people in your life who likely want to help (and spend time with their youngest family members). If this isn’t an option, hire help! The biggest thing you need to do is let go of the guilt. Having a nanny come by a couple days each week, or even hiring a monthly babysitter for a scheduled night out is completely acceptable—and you should do it!

I’m overwhelmed by motherhood. What can I do?

Feeling overwhelmed is a normal part of being a parent. There are a lot of moving parts. If you’re feeling anxious or depressed, it may be necessary to consult a doctor. Your OB/GYN or family physician can make recommendations based on your personal history and current feelings.

For many, talking to someone can help. Either seek out therapy, or find support in a mom’s group or trusted friend. Having a group of other moms—or at least one or two—that you can go to for support may help you make peace with those overwhelming thoughts.

It’s also important to participate in self-care. Don’t let motherhood consume you. Find hobbies and interests outside of your family. Exercise or working creatively can help. Test your limits by trying a new workout trend, or ask a girlfriend to meet you for a wine and paint night to unwind.

Summer is just around the corner, but I don’t feel comfortable in a bathing suit.

How many of us do feel comfortable in bathing suits? The truth is, every person has something they would change about their body. For me, the rule of thumb is to not miss out on experiences with my children because of how I’m feeling about my appearance on any given day.

Invest in a suit that complements your body. The days a two-piece was an option may be out the window, but luckily one-piece suits are having a moment right now! Choose one with cutouts in the best places for your body, or with a lace detail that makes it still look a little sexy even if you aren’t baring it all. If your lower abs are the problem, cover those without covering up completely. Those high-rise bikinis are having a moment, too, and they perfectly cover the pesky lower stomach while still looking on trend. You can always play with colors and shapes to complement your body type, too.

Need a little tummy tuck? Spanx now makes swimsuits. You’re welcome.


Overall Health

What is the best multi-vitamin for women?

Many OB/GYNs actually recommend prenatal vitamins for all women of childbearing age, whether you’re pregnant or not. The levels in these vitamins are optimized for women and offer additional nutrients that other multi-vitamins may not have.

The brand matters less. Mostly pick one that works for you, is affordable, and available nearby. Some brands may be harder on the stomach but taking them at night can help. The purer the vitamin, the better.

Sidebar: Drink This!

Have boxes of Girl Scout cookies taking up space in your pantry? (We know you ordered extras so your daughter could get the 500-box prize her entire troop was vying for). Unwind at the end of the day with a cookie and wine pairing, or sip on a cocktail inspired by your favorite box.

Here is the breakdown:


Tagalongs – Rosé

Make it local: Buy a bottle of Scotto Family Cellars’ Dry Sangiovese Rosé (ScottoFamilyCellars.com)


Trefoils – Chardonnay

Make it local: Harney Lane’s 2017 Chardonnay features bright fruit flavors including apple, pear, and white peach.


Thin Mints – Cabernet Sauvignon

Make it local: Mettler’s rich cabernet tastes of dark cherry, cola, and cedar with earthy characteristics. The long finish pairs well with this minty delight.


Thanks-a-lot – Zinfandel

Make it local: Can you go wrong with a zin in Lodi? Klinker Brick’s 2015 Old Ghost is a good choice, classified as the winery’s best zinfandel of the year.


Do-si-dos – Malbec

Make it local: The estate-grown Malbec from Burlington Chandler is a treat. Enjoy wine made from local grapes from the former executive director of the Lodi Winegrape Commission.


Samoas – Tawny port

Make it local: NV OVZ makes a dessert wine that mimics a tawny port. It’s made from 40-year-old brandy originally owned by Korbel Winery and features flavors of almonds, walnuts, raisins, and caramel.

Cocktails:

A distillery out of Humboldt, Humboldt Distillery, decided to get creative with their Girl Scout cookie drinks. Use these recipes if you’ve already run through your stash and want to mimic your favorite cookie’s taste.


Samoas Scout:

Recipe:

2 oz Humboldt Distillery Organic Vodka (or another organic vodka)

.5 oz dark creme de cacao

.5 oz toasted coconut syrup

.5 oz heavy whipping cream

Rim a martini glass with high quality chocolate syrup and use toasted coconut flakes for rim.

To create the syrup, start with sweetened coconut flakes, and toast them in the oven at 350 degrees until nicely golden. Add to a pot with equal parts sugar and water, and bring to a boil. Place everything into a heatproof container and let cool overnight. Once cooled the next day, strain through a fine mesh strainer.


The Thin Mintini

Recipe:

1 oz Humboldt Distillery Organic Vodka (or another organic vodka)

1 oz Creme de Menthe

1/4 cup Chocolate Ice Cream

Thin Mint Cookies

Rub rim of glass in melted ice cream and dip in crushed Thin Mints cookies (if you have some) for garnish. Blend vodka, mint liqueur, and chocolate ice cream in electric blender until smooth.

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