Benefits of Collagen: More than Skin Deep

The word “collagen” is derived from the Greek “kolla,” meaning glue. It is the most abundant protein in our body forming the musculoskeletal system and all connective tissue. Experts often refer to it as the fountain of youth. As we age, our body’s ability to make collagen begins to slow down. Consequently, our skin, hair, tendons, cartilage, bones, joints, organs, and intestines start losing their structure, causing signs of aging and poor health.

Collagen is made of primarily amino acids, many of which need to be obtained through diet. There are delicious foods that help replenish collagen, but supplementation may benefit you more efficiently and in more ways than just beauty.

Research shows our skin is made of approximately 70% collagen. In some studies, consumption of collagen peptides was seen to significantly reduce eye wrinkle volume by up to 20 percent and this effect was long-lasting.1 Other studies show how after 6 months of use, collagen led to a clear improvement of the skin appearance in women suffering from moderate cellulite2 and stretchmarks.

About 33% of collagen is made from the amino acids proline and glycine. Today, it can be difficult to obtain therapeutic amounts from diet alone. Hydrolyzed collagen protein (powder) is arguably the easiest way to increase collagen levels. Hydrolyzed simply means the proteins are broken down into easy-to-use molecules. Two highly reputable brands are Great Lakes and Vital Proteins (I have no affiliation with either). Taking 2 tablespoons at breakfast and at night have shown to be enough to experience benefits. There is virtually no taste or smell.

Bone broth, commonly used centuries ago and popular again today, is abundant in collagen, minerals, and other special anti-inflammatory properties. From your kitchen or health food store, it’s easy to sip on broth like tea, or use in soups and stir fry. Bone broth is high in protein and supports the immune system. It is particularly useful for gastrointestinal health and in reduction of inflammation.3

In our daily diet, fish, meat, bones, and organs are the best sources of collagen. Vegetarians can depend on beans, cheese, eggs and wheat germ. Here’s a great tip: Adding vitamin C from berries and greens will increase the utilization and production of collagen, in addition to the mineral copper, and sterols derived from aloe vera.4 You can get copper from sources such as sesame seeds and cashews.5

Aside from the beauty benefits, collagen’s amino acid profile can be life changing for everyone. It supports mood, gut health, joint6 and post-exercise pain.7 Its high content of proline, shown to be significantly present in wound healing,8 and glycine, an important inhibitory neurotransmitter as well as a natural anti-inflammatory9 are of significant interest in research today.

With consistent use, anti-aging, improved digestion, detoxification, restful sleep7, brain function, as well as weight loss are all benefits of collagen consumption you can look forward to experiencing. For those of us who want to beat the clock, stay pain-free and look younger, collagen may just be your secret weapon.

Tiffany is a certified nutrition consultant and functional diagnostic nutrition practitioner and can be reached at (760) 285.1221. www.GlutenFreeWithTiffany.com

References: 1) https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23949208, 2) https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26561784, 3) https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/m/pubmed/11035691/, 4) https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4345938/, 5) https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/6110524, 6)http://www.scielo.br/pdf/rbgg/v19n1/1809-9823-rbgg-19-01-00153.pdf, 7)https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18416885, 8) https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23508578, 9)https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12589194

Why Do I Keep Getting Canker Sores?

Canker sores appear in the mouth, on the tongue, lips, cheeks and gums and can develop into ulcers, or a white swelling which can be the size of a pinhead or as large as a quarter. They cause a burning, tingling sensation that can be irritating and painful especially when eating or drinking certain types of foods. They can appear (and may disappear) quickly or linger for as long as a month.   

So what causes these types of ulcers to erupt?  As with many diseases, canker sores are derived from inflammation in the body. There can be many triggers, such as nutritional deficiencies, which can create unnecessary inflammation; hormone imbalances; dental issues; food allergies; excessive stress and fatigue; biting your cheek or gum during eating which creates stress to the area; failing to change your tooth brush routinely, or using a tooth paste with excess chemicals.

There are also diseases such as irritable bowel syndrome, Crohn’s disease or chronic fatigue which can affect the immune system as well as the bowels.  When the bowel is affected and a build-up of toxins occurs, more inflammation builds and outbreaks of the skin (your largest organ) and underlying immune responses to the additional bacteria can cause these types of ulcer outbreaks. 

So, outbreaks can be a simple response to eating the wrong foods that create more acidity within the system and cause inflammation to build, or something more causing a consistent outbreak or long-lasting ulcers that don’t seem to go away.

What can you do?

Cleaning up the diet, addressing hormone issues, managing stress and making sure your elimination process is working efficiently will all make a big difference on how long the canker sore(s) will last or return again. Keep in mind that drinking at least 64 ounces of water a day can enhance elimination and toxin removal from the body.

Nutritional deficiencies such as iron, L-lysine, vitamin B12 and other B-vitamins, folic acid, vitamin C and zinc have all been linked to outbreaks. Taking a quality multi-vitamin daily can help to supply nutrients you may not be getting in your diet.  Garlic and olive leaf together can act as a natural antibiotic and assist with the removal of bacteria.  Alfalfa and red clover can assist in cleansing the blood stream (not to be taken with certain medications or if you are pregnant).

Keeping the body more alkaline than acid is important.  Try eating more salads with raw onions, asparagus and eggs (foods that are higher naturally in sulfur lowers inflammation). Limit, or preferably eliminate, your intake of inflammatory foods such as alcohol, coffee, sugars, citrus fruits, night shade veggies and processed and refined foods.

Other quick remedies include applying a ½ tsp. of coconut oil daily onto the area and taking orally to help rid unwanted bacteria build-up and to speed the healing process. Gargling with warm salt water can also help ease pain.

We all age and as we do, our diet should help our bodies rather than hinder the process to keep us healthy and free of unwanted pain and irritation.

Dr. Beckner is owner of Your Body Code, personalized nutrition and wellness programs in Palm Desert, and can be reached at (760) 341.BODY (2639).  For free recipes and more information visit www.yourbodycode.com

1.) Herbal Healing by Phyllis A. Balch CNC, copyright 2002.  2.) Understanding Nutrition, 7th edition by Eleanor Noss Whitney & Sharon Rady Rolfes, copyright 1977.

How Often Should I Change My Make-Up?

To maintain that healthy facial glow, here are some helpful facts about the shelf life for your cosmetic products.

Mascara should be replaced every three months, as its liquid consistency and exposure to air every time it is opened make it more vulnerable to bacteria. Its proximity to your eye area can lead to possible infections. If you end up with conjunctivitis, commonly called “pink eye” or any other eye infections, it’s best to throw your mascara away immediately! Also, be cautious when sharing your mascara with others; it is not recommended.

Liquid eyeliners present the same concerns as mascaras, so they should be replaced every six months. Pencil eyeliners, however, can last up two years. Sharpen your pencil with each use to keep it fresh and easy to use/apply. Regularly cleaning your sharpener with a discarded toothbrush is a good idea, as well.

Most foundations should last up to one year; however, you should throw away liquid foundations if you notice any change in smell, texture or color. If you’re prone to acne, consider replacing your foundation every six months and be sure to wash hands, sponges and brushes much more often.

Because of the liquid consistency of lip-gloss, it will need to be replaced more often than an actual lipstick; every 12 months is recommended. The longevity of concealers depends upon consistency. Liquid concealer should be tossed after one year; however, powder concealer can last up to two years. Non-liquid lipsticks can last up to two years, as well.

If you notice a change in color in your nail polish or even a bad smell, it’s time to throw your polish away. Typically, it should last you up to two years. Some brands have expiration dates on the back of the bottle. When making a purchase, check for expiration dates before your purchase to make sure it’s not old inventory! If your products do not have expiration dates, use a sharpie to note date of purchase as a freshness guide.

Powder, blush, bronzer or eyeshadow can last for two years, with proper care. And don’t forget to clean your brushes often!

Heat destroys the shelf life of your favorite products, so a trick of the trade for desert dwellers is to find a handy little make-up tote and refrigerate your make-up. The bonus of refrigeration is the refreshing coolness during application!

Michele McDonough is a strategic consultant and executive recruiter in the field of health and beauty. She is also co-founder of Women’s Power Circle and can be reached at [email protected]

Five Ways to Wear Fall Fashion in Warm Weather

Although Father Time says it’s autumn, Mother Nature seems to have a different opinion. With temperatures still cresting over 85 degrees, one may find it frustrating to put together a fall outfit that doesn’t cause heat stroke, yet is a bit more substantial than strappy sandals and a billowy maxi dress.

Fellow fashion icon and fitness guru, Natalie Corona, and I have highlighted five fall fashion finds that will help you effortlessly transition into autumn attire.

Burgundy

Pantone announced that “Tawny Port” was THE color for fall, and since our weather, besides being very warm, is also perpetually sunny, we chose a muted burgundy that does not feel heavy amidst the palm trees and bright skies. If burgundy is not your thing, instead, reach for dove grey, peacock or navy, which are also featured colors on this fall’s color line up. Don’t be afraid to mix these fall tones with the soft colors you wore in the summer. One of our favorite combos is blush, also known as “ballet slipper” with any of the Pantone “it” colors listed above.

Boots

Nothing hollers autumn like boots. Whether your preference is ankle or knee high, boots are an easy and fun way to transition from flip flops to fall follies. There are so many color and fabric choices when it comes to boots. Keeping a bare leg allows us desert dwellers the opportunity to wear peep-toe booties and corset tie-up shoes throughout the season without worrying about frosty toes. Natalie and I both love a shorter skirt or even denim or leather shorts with suede boots. Boots of all kinds make a decided statement that the holiday season is here.

Layering

With the Valley temperatures dramatically dipping after sunset, layering is a great way to go from chilled to cozy. Natalie chose a fall-colored flannel that is casually tied around her waist to create a cinched-in waistline. A plaid shirt in flannel or cotton blend gives a cool vibe when watching weekend football games or strolling down El Paseo with family or friends. I chose a wool blend shrug left open to give the casual knit dress a sturdier and more dressed-up appearance. A textured shrug or cropped sweater is a fashion forward choice when meeting with friends or co-workers for an impromptu happy hour at one of our favorite outdoor eateries in the heart of Palm Springs.

Fringe

Since we will not be routinely adding a shearling, wool or fur coat to our fall repertoire, fringe accessories are the perfect way to add substance and the swing factor to our warm weather fall outfits. In our pics, Natalie has fringe on her boots that give a playful and grounded look, while I have donned a fringed belt that gives another layer of weight and movement that we have come to love in traditional fall styling. Fringe-infused totes, clutches and satchels are all the rage this season…especially in fun fall colors, like Grenadine, a poppy red that claims to look great on everybody and yet another easy way to bring an autumn vibe to our warm fall climate.

Make-up

As our days get shorter and soirees get more plentiful, this season’s fall make-up trends are a fan favorite to showcase our lean toward impending festivities, all while keeping us cool…in more ways than one. Natalie and I are wearing a warm nude lip color, which is always in style no matter the climate or time of year. However, to step up the sizzle factor, warm chestnut, silky mauve and candy apple red are so ‘right now.’ Try adding a matte finish to bring your conquer-the-world factor up a notch or two. Not into bold lips? Then experiment with a unique eye color, such as a bold chunky eyeliner in peacock or cobalt, or add mountain shadow hues, like terra-cotta and deep rich mocha onto your upper eye lids. Surprisingly, all the tips mentioned above work on a multitude of skin tones and eye colors.

When you feel a hankering to drink apple cider and hot cocoa, but need to blast your A/C to do so, remember that you can easily add a fall flair to your summer wardrobe by choosing more saturated colors like burgundy, throw on a pair of suede or leather booties, grab a fringed bag and layer your outfit with a flannel or nubby textured vest.

Regardless of what autumnal accents you apply, the most important time-tested trend is to never leave the house without an unmovable belief in yourself, loving kindness towards others, and an attitude of gratitude.

Elizabeth Scarcella, founder of Go Get Young, is a lifestyle counselor who helps her clients reclaim their best self by utilizing a variety of holistic methodologies. For more information, visit www.gogetyoung.tv. Natalie Corona, mom to 2 youngsters, is a transformation coach passionate about helping her clients to look and feel their best. For more information, visit www.facebook.com/nataliecorona.

Your Skin Care Regimen

Your regular skin care system may not be the best year-round regime. However, shifting your beauty routine in accordance with the season is something few of us stop to consider.

Just as you switch up your wardrobe in concert with the seasons, you should also be rotating your skin care products to protect your complexion against climate variables…extreme heat, cold and humidity…even the harshness of high wind. The environmental/geographical conditions in which you live, as well as the daily stress you endure, can impact the way your skin behaves and responds! So paying attention to the seasonal climate changes will affect what skin care treatments you need and any regimen adjustments.

Did you know that our eating habits also change with the seasons? That’s likely due to the seasonal harvesting patterns of all things fresh, fruity and green! Given we all agree, what you ingest directly affects the health of your skin.

You now have multiple reasons to change your regimen with the seasons!

Generally, you’ll find your complexion tends to be oilier in the summer and drier in the winter, meaning the same moisturizer used year round won’t suffice. Use the seasonal change in your area as an indicator to start transitioning your products. Following are a few healthy skin tips to guide you as the seasons change:

  • It’s time to get that dry skin exfoliated from the winter months so moisturizers are better absorbed into the skin. To help in the exfoliation process, look for products that contain Alpha Hydroxy Acids.
  • Look for products containing hyaluronic acid. This is a powerful humectant (moisture-binding ingredient that holds moisture in the skin) which keeps the skin plump and hydrated and, yes, young-looking. This is critical and desirable in drier climates.
  • Retinoid-based products are also important when it comes to seasonal changes. This covers all of your dermal needs: UV protection; smoother, firmer skin; a more even tone; fewer breakouts and tighter pores.

And always remember to drink lots of water ALL year round! Yes, it will ultimately show up on your skin.

Michele McDonough is a strategic consultant and executive recruiter in the field of health and beauty. She is also co-founder of Women’s Power Circle and can be reached at [email protected]

Resolving to QUIT in 2018

The New Year is upon us, and for many resolutions will be set and abandoned within the first 8 weeks of the year. Those resolutions were more than likely set to achieve some level of happiness – financial, physical or emotional.

THIS year, let’s quit some stuff in order to move towards happiness rather than adding, abandoning and then feeling the subsequent self-loathing for lack of achievement. Just QUIT the following:

Comparing. Comparison is the thief of joy. It truly is. And let’s be honest, we really don’t know the whole story when we are viewing snapshots of vacations or parties that we see on social media. The picture that you see may have been preceded by devastating news or an argument. Stay in your own lane. Get clear on what you really want and chase that.

Expectations of Others. “Expectations are a down payment on future resentments.” The bar you set for yourself is for YOU. Placing that same bar for others is a really quick way to get frustrated and disappointed. People have different values and place importance on different virtues. Being on time, for instance, is NOT important to some people. If it is to you, be on time. If your BFF is chronically late, tell her to meet you 15 minutes early. Problem solved.

Controlling Behavior. Listen, you only have control over you and your behavior, reactions and responses. You have control over the process but not the outcome. And here’s the truth…sometimes, you miss the TRUE outcome, the BETTER outcome because you were too busy trying to manipulate the outcome you THOUGHT you wanted. Let it go. Do your best. Put one foot in front of the other, do the next right thing… the outcome will sort itself out.

Approval of Others. You don’t need it. You are an adult and are capable of writing your own permission slips. Life is short and you are allowed to do, think and feel what is best for YOUR Soul. This doesn’t mean you are selfish and don’t think of others, it means YOU COUNT. Remember, you are not responsible for other people’s reactions to your decisions. You are only responsible for how you impart and implement your own desires.

Your Limiting Beliefs. You are amazing! Take a moment to write down all that you have achieved. Really. Do it. If you are more than 2 years old, you have achieved a LOT. Write down the things that you think you should just “blow off”; learning to walk, read, write. It’s a big deal. Continue to be a student. When you think that you can’t do something, add the word “yet.” It changes everything.

It’s 2018 and it is going to be an amazing year. You will be challenged, there will be change, there will be joy, love, loss, excitement and fear. It’s all happening. Some of it you will like and some of it you won’t. How you navigate and respond to it all will shape your year. So, CHEERS to YOU, the New Year and QUITTING!

Jen Yockey is the owner of Gather, a movement and wellness studio, and founder of the Recover You™ Program. She is a certified yoga instructor and master life coach and can be reached at (760) 219.7953, [email protected] or jenyockey.com.

Athleisure Wear

Remember the days when exercise clothes belonged only in the gym? Today, athletic wear can take you from the mat to the mall with just a few thought-out touches.

When putting together a daytime errand-running-lunch-with-friends snazzy yet uber comfy ensemble, think trendy and practical at the same time. Fit leggings and a strappy sports bra are perfect for layering with an open back tank or a pullover that is equal parts cozy and chic. The sweater pictured here with a high low hem and side slits looks adorable with a knit scarf that ups the cozy factor. Finally, some rose gold flats with coordinating hardware on a handbag add just enough accessorizing to create a smart and fun street look.

A few simple additions can take your workout wear into town.

Sometimes our afternoon errands and late day workout routine take us into sunset creating the need to dress appropriately for happy hour, catching an early bird dinner, or dashing off to watch our child’s practice or rehearsal. In those unforeseen, yet probable, cases, I recommend a chic jacket with lots of detail to pair with solid colored yoga gear. A cropped style works just as well as a hip length coat.

For diversity, I love a silky and strappy bra tank that wears almost like a camisole. Nothing says comfort and sexy at the same time like a built-in bra shirt in a move-with-you feel paired with black leggings. These pieces are so transitional – durable for a workout, yet luxurious enough for a night on the town. To complement this urban look, I would add black booties, maybe with metallic gold accents that offer just enough glitz, yet are walkable as well. 

If this outfit will be taking you into the night, dress the whole ensemble up with a clutch purse in a metallic hue or any other color coordinating with your footwear. Finally, gold hoop earrings are more than enough jewelry, especially with a detailed jacket.

Once you start looking at your workout gear as additional pieces to your wardrobe, I bet you will quickly find many options that you hadn’t previously considered. Don’t be afraid to pair unlikely combos, such as kitten heel closed toe pumps with a textured pair of leggings, or a wedge sandal with flower print capris. It’s easiest to start blending your studio-to-street wear by pairing with neutral colors, flowy knits and chunky jewelry to create a cool, put together vibe.

Most important is that you feel good in your own skin, express yourself freely and strive to live from an attitude of gratitude.

Elizabeth Scarcella, founder of Go Get Young and co-owner of Rx2Fitness, is dedicated to helping others find health in all aspects of life. For more information, find her at [email protected]

Saving Stressed Skin

We hear it all the time, stress is the leading factor of disease within the body…and the skin is no different. As our largest organ, it’s paramount we learn how to keep damage in check during anxiety-ridden times, especially if your face is the place that’s showing signs of stress.

Wrinkles

Noticing more fine lines and laxity in your skin? Stress may be impacting you on a hormonal level. Cortisol, the hormone released in response to stress, is the natural enemy of collagen, breaking down the connective tissue that keeps your complexion taut and firm. But beyond damaging collagen, anxiety can also cause us to hold certain facial expressions, such as furrowing the brow which can eventually cause permanent wrinkling on the forehead and around the eyes.

The Solution: Become mindful of when you are holding facial expressions in moments of stress. Breathe in deeply, and as you exhale, visualize your face being relaxed and smooth. Meditation is also helpful, even if you have just a few moments. Download a meditation app onto your mobile device so you have no excuse to take a quick beauty bliss moment. Lack of hydration is typically a wrinkle culprit, so make sure you consume at least 8 glasses of pure water each day to prevent dry skin and to eliminate toxins. For a quick hydration fix, use a serum that contains hyaluronic acid, an ingredient that naturally occurs in your body and holds 1,000 times its weight in water. It even pulls moisture from the air into the skin, instantly hydrating and leaving you with a gorgeous glow.

Under-Eye Bags

Tomorrow’s to-do list can weigh on your mind, keeping you from getting enough beauty sleep. This can cause fluid to pool below your lower eyelid resulting in a puffy mess in the morning. Stomach sleepers, bad news: You can expect the puffiness of your under-eye bags to be even worse due to gravity.

The Solution: Get at least eight hours of sleep. Since the light from your smartphone’s screen simulates sunlight, shut off any electronic devices an hour before you go to sleep. Use your downtime to enjoy a cup of caffeine-free chamomile tea to help calm and relax you before bed. If you still wake up with puffy eyes in the morning, hold the back of a cold spoon (pop it in the fridge) up to your under-eye area and massage it from the inner to the outer corner of your eye to jumpstart the fluid’s drainage. Then, apply concealer in an inverted triangle under your eye. The brightness will start slightly below your nostrils and build toward your eye, concealing the puffiness.

In today’s world, stress seems inevitable, yet, there are simple solutions that can make all the difference in showing a face that appears to have just returned from a relaxing vacation.

Elizabeth Scarcella, founder of Go Get Young and co-owner of Rx2Fitness, is dedicated to helping others find health in all aspects of life. For more information, find her at [email protected]

The Evolution of Skin Rejuvenation

Acne is dramatically reduced after ten weeks of treatment. (Photo by Envy Medical, Inc; results may vary)

When a new service joins Desert Health®, I like to know as much about it as I can – to educate myself and to better inform readers. Such is the case with SilkPeel Dermalinfusion. I hadn’t heard of the treatment which Studio Facials owner Kris Kabris called “all the rage in LA,” so I went to work researching its efficacy.

It appears that many celebrities do indeed turn to SilkPeel to achieve that “flawless look.” Not only are they treating their face, but also different parts of the body including the décolleté, neck, hands, and feet. Local plastic surgeon Andrew Ordon, MD, stated on The Doctors that it is the new trend, “It used to be all about the face, and now, they want everything to match.”

What sets this treatment apart from others?

The SilkPeel combines three treatments in one to exfoliate, extract and infuse skin with beneficial serums to treat a variety of skin conditions. “It’s non-invasive, takes only 30 minutes and has no downtime,” says Kabris, “So you can use it prior to a big event or simply on your lunch break.”

Like microdermabrasion, SilkPeel is a skin resurfacing treatment, but with added benefits. First, instead of spraying particles at the skin or scraping with a more abrasive crystal tip, SilkPeel uses a diamond-tipped wand to softly resurface and polish the skin while at the same time using suction to remove dead skin cells. Simultaneously, healthy serums for specific skin conditions such as sun damage, acne or fine lines are delivered into the skin via the wand right after exfoliation when the newly surfaced skin is most receptive. After the treatment, you can immediately apply makeup. 

What skin conditions does SilkPeel treat?

Like other treatments, SilkPeel stimulates blood circulation and revitalizes collagen production, which promotes younger-looking skin. However, the therapy is also designed to help problem skin conditions through the different serums added.  The vitamin C solution helps sun-damaged skin and is used as a skin brightener for hyperpigmentation. For acne, the skin is infused with two healing agents: salicylic acid which dissolves pore plugs and bisabolol, an agent extracted from chamomile which works to calm inflammation and condition the skin. For dark spots, the active ingredient is lumixyl peptide, and for dehydrated skin, hyaluronic acid, which is produced in the body naturally.

“If a client has multiple problem spots, say acne in some areas and dryness in another, I can mix it up to apply the individual serums where they are needed,” says Kabris adding that the wand tips can also be changed for different body parts. She has successfully used it in the breast and belly areas for post-pregnancy stretch marks
as well.

How many treatments are required to see improvement?

“You’ll see improvement with the first treatment as your face will appear plumper,” says Kabris. “And you’ll continue to see improvement for days later as the serum continues to work under your skin.” The company recommends a series of four to six treatments scheduled every other week and then maintenance once a month in place of a standard facial. Problem skin conditions may take longer. “With acne, swelling and redness will be reduced immediately. I have some clients who see very noticeable improvement with just one treatment, and then significant improvement after four to six sessions.”

Are there any adverse side effects?

According to numerous websites, serious side effects don’t seem to be a major concern. Skin irritation and redness from the exfoliation process and some reactions to the serums were noted.

I enjoyed my treatment with Kris and the plump and polished look that followed. She recommended the vitamin C for anti-aging and kindly reminded me to wear sunscreen daily. She also used the hydrating serum on my lips and around the eyes. I was in and out within an hour and on with my day. For me, results were indeed immediate and visible for days.

For more information, contact Kris Kabris at Studio Facials (760) 636.3555.

Sources: 1) https://www.thedermreview.com/silkpeel; 2) The Doctors TV, March 21, 2016; 2) https://www.realself.com/silkpeel; 3) www.oprah.com/style/the-facts-about-skin-treatments

Functional, Fashionable Footwear

Few fashion items seem as elusive as finding the perfect summer shoe. As the years grow on me, my tootsies demand more respect (and support) than an inexpensive pair of trendy flip flops can provide. In addition, I have finally accepted that Birkenstocks and Crocs, albeit comfy, are not always the most suitable choice to complete a more polished look.

Having been on the quest for a chic-practical-go-with-everything-in-my-closet shoe, I have curated 3 must-have styles that are sure to keep your feet smiling and your inner fashionista proud.

Neutral platform wedges with an ankle strap. Platform sandals come in a variety of styles to suit your preferred look and budget. Whether you go for a “flatform” wedge in which the entire sole of the shoe is anchored solidly on the ground (similar to a sneaker) or you opt for a raised platform, you can’t go wrong with this choice, which pairs perfectly with linen shorts, cotton capris, or a full skirt. When selecting the perfect hue, check your predominant color palate…do you tend toward warm tones or cool tones? Purchase a pair that complements your wardrobe in order to get the most use.

Flat stacked mule slides. Mule slides are an easy, classic shoe that transcend many fashion styles and have remained on trend for decades. Since you can find them in unlimited colors and fabrics, it becomes effortless to match them with your existing summer wardrobe. Alternatively, I am obsessing over this summer’s ice cream colored palette serving up all the “flavors” – from mint green to yellow sorbet. Decide to be bold and add a pastel punch of color to an ordinarily plain colored outfit.

Block heel sandals. Flat sandals aren’t always an option, especially when attending a swanky garden party or dining at a chic restaurant. However, a block heel, also called a chunky heel, is the ideal option. Again, this style of sandal comes in a bevy of colors and fabric choices. Block heel sandals work with everything from fancy adorned jeans to a midi-length dress, or even a ball gown. I suggest choosing a scrappy metallic version to instantly increase the sizzle factor and look appropriately dressed, all while being comfortable throughout the duration of your festivities.

Regardless of the color or particular style you are drawn to, functional fashionable summer footwear is not as mystical as you may have thought. Use the suggestions above to create a custom look that’s entirely your own.

Remember, the most important factor in choosing your summer supplies is that you think happy thoughts, feel a sense of calm and peace, and consequently, inspire others to do the same. Happy feet forward!

Elizabeth Scarcella, founder of Go Get Young and co-owner of Rx2Fitness, is dedicated to helping others find health in all aspects of life. For more information, find her at [email protected]