Refresh Your Wardrobe Without Busting Your Budget!

Image from the Spring Fling Collection at Nifty Thrifty.

Are you swooning over all the new spring trends? Is your wardrobe screaming for a makeover? Today we’ve got two sites that can help you achieve the look you want without breaking the bank: Twice and Nifty Thrifty. Nifty Thrifty is amazing, they collect unique pieces and curate them based on the best trends. Looking to add a little floral to your wardrobe this spring, just go their floral collection. Need a great maxi, they have a collection for that too.

Twice is great for both buying and selling clothes. Twice only buys clothes in fantastic condition from top brands, and they keep prices affordable, ~$20 for a pair of pants, ~$13 for a top. It’s a great place to shop expensive designers too. The best part about Twice, free returns and exchanges. So you can shop without stressing about fit. An added bonus, buying used clothing is not just easy on your wallet, its kinder to the earth too!

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Y&L Is Wishing You A Beautiful Christmas!

Ornament1

Good morning to all our readers, clients, and followers out there! We wanted to send you all the warmest holiday wishes and wish you a beautiful and memorable Christmas day. It has been a great year so far exploring the challenges of balancing style with a busy lifestyle, challenging but fun! We love that our salon is in the fantastic Saratoga community and are excited to continue to become a part of it!

We are also excited for all that the next year will bring and we plan to spend the next few days thinking of a few beauty-inspired resolutions. Speaking of which, one resolution we have is to rock more “natural” makeup looks. If achieving a natural but gorgeous look is something you’re interested in be sure to check back this Thursday when we post a tutorial for achieving beautiful “natural” looking makeup. We’ll share products and take you step-by-step so you can achieve a flawless natural look to take you into the new year.

But anyways, we just wanted to say Merry Christmas, and thank you for being beautiful!

Join Us For Our Pink Party & Support A Good Cause

On Saturday October 27th from 7-9 PM we are throwing a Pink Party to raise awareness about Breast Cancer. Nearly 1 in 8 women will develop invasive breast cancer during their lifetime, and just last year, 230,480 new cases of invasive breast cancer were expected to be diagnosed (breastcancer.org). But there is hope, in 2011 there were more than 2.6 million breast cancer survivors in the U.S. Breast cancer is a disease we can help beat if we raise awareness, so join us on October 27th for our Pink Party, or get involved in initiatives near you to support National Breast Cancer Awareness Month!

Your $55 ticket includes hors d’oeuvres, beverages, and your choice of either a blowout, a mani-pedi, or makeup application. A portion of all our services on this night will be donated to the Avon Foundation for Women.

If you are interested in partying with us in support of breast cancer awareness call, email, or stop by Y&L Style Bar!

​​Call: 408-868-5569

Email: office@ylstylebar.com

Or stop by: 14410 Big Basin Way Suite E

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Color Your Hair Naturally with Henna

Feel like giving your hair color a boost? I know I do with all the color-changing leaves and gorgeous red and orange hues of fall! Why not give a natural alternative to chemical laden hair dyes a try? This week at Y&L we wanted to talk about a natural hair dye, Henna! Most hair dyes rely on toxic chemicals like peroxide or ammonia that strip the hair follicles so that the hair will take the color. These chemicals are bad for your health, your hair’s health, and the environments health.

When I made the switch to safe cosmetics I was determined to find a safe alternative that would give my hair a nice boost of burgundy and auburn color that I so dearly crave. Henna is the only safe, natural, and chemical free hair color on the market. Even most of natural brands for sale at stores like Whole Foods still contain chemicals that strip your hair, drying it out, and have potential links to things like cancer and brain damage (yuck)!

I was a little intimidated by Henna at first, and distraught at the time it takes for the color to set. But after months of using Henna I’ve got it down to a great routine and have worked out most of the kinks—leaving me with a great burgundy glow in my brunette locks! I personally swear by Light Mountain’s Natural Hair Color & Conditioner. This product only uses henna and indigo (for some color varieties) to achieve a decent range of colors. It is under $6 a box, and I am able to dye my medium length hair at least twice with the powder in one box (talk about affordable). A couple of things to note about Henna:

  • You cannot lighten your hair with henna, it will only get more red or darker/more brown. In general henna will deepen and enhance your natural color. For me, it brings out the auburn and burgundy tones in my brown hair. I get a lot of compliments from professional stylists about my color and they would die if they knew (a) I did it myself, and (b) I did it with henna!
  • Henna can add highlights to darker hair and darken lighter hair.
  • The color is not permanent; it lasts 4-6 weeks.
  • Henna is a great conditioning treatment for your hair. Unlike other dyes it will actually improve the health of your hair with use!
  • Henna has an unusual smell, but so does hair dye. It can take a few washes to get all of the henna particles out of your hair.

There are some tips and tricks I have found for effectively applying henna. First and foremost be patient. Be generous when mixing the henna and waiting for it to activate. Let it sit on your head as long as possible! Patience is probably the one thing that keeps people from realizing the awesomeness that is dying your hair with henna. My personal henna recipe for a burgundy shade is:

  • 3 Tbsp Light Mountain Natural Henna in Red
  • 3 Tbsp Light Mountain Natural Henna in Burgundy
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1-2 Tbsp of lemon juice or apple cider vinegar
  • Enough boiling water to make a paste

I mix the ingredients in a glass bowl with a wooden spoon and let it sit for about 2 hours, sometimes 2.5 hours. After 2 hours have passed if the mix is super thick I add a little more boiling water. Then I put on some gloves and a wrap a towel around my shoulders to apply the goop with my hands onto my head. Starting at the scalp and working it through my hair. Once my whole head is covered, I wrap it in a heating shower cap, then two pieces of saran wrap, then a fabric head wrap. I leave it on for at least 5 hours. Sometimes what I do to save time is apply the mix at night, wrap it up real tight, lay an old towel on my pillow and sleep with the mix on my head. I rinse it out with conditioner in the shower and use a fine tooth comb to help remove the pieces of henna.

It sounds like a lot of work, but if you do it right before bed, it is really no biggie. And it is so much more affordable, more beautiful, and better for my health and the environment than traditional dye! My favorite resource for dying your hair with henna are The Henna for Hair Page, where people share their mixes and pictures for getting great henna results.

Have you ever used henna hair dye? What was your experience like?

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Natural Gel Eyeliner!

We are always on the lookout for great products that deliver professional quality without compromising your health, the environment, or your wallet! Today we wanted to give you a heads up on a new gel eyeliner we will be testing soon. It is the All Natural Mineral Gel Eyeliner in Intense Black from Erzulie Cosmetics which is sold exclusively on Etsy. Erzulie Cosmetics are made by Rhonda ( in small batches from safe and organic ingredients. Normally the eyeliner is $9.95 a pot, a steal for gel eyeliner (and comparable to Maybelline’s Eye Studio Lasting Drama Gel Eyeliner). But right now she is offering it for $7.95, plus a 10% off coupon! Pretty sweet right? From the website and her feedback it seems like this eyeliner could be a new Y&L favorite for creating some dramatic cat eyes. But we can’t give it a stamp of approval without trying it out, but for $7.95 it’s not too big a financial risk :).

If you are willing to wait, we will give you a full product review and pictures of the finished look as soon as we can get our hands on the eyeliner goodies! Have you ever tried Erzulie Cosmetics before?

DIY: Hydrating Avocado Hair Mask

Aguacate / Avocado

Aguacate / Avocado (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Did your days in the summer sun and swimming in the pool give your hair a beating? Or do cooler and drier fall days reek havoc on your tresses? If so we have a recipe for a natural DIY hydrating hair mask for you to try out today. It is sure to have your hair feeling balanced, soft, and happier! Oh and it’s all natural and made from easy to find and affordable ingredients—win, win, win!

Ingredients:

  • 1 ripe banana
  • 1 ripe avocado
  • 1 tbsp of wheatgerm oil or olive oil
  • A few drops of essential oils, such as lavender, rose, or sweet orange

Directions:

  1. Mash up all the ingredients in a bowl or a blender.
  2. Shampoo, comb out any tangles, and towel dry your hair.
  3. Apply the mask to your hair (including your scalp if you’d like).
  4. Cover it up with a shower cap and wrap it up in saran wrap. Allow the mask to sit for at least 15 minutes (but feel free to let it sit longer).
  5. Rinse out the mask in the shower, be sure to use a drain catch to keep banana and avocado from clogging the drain.
  6. Enjoy your happy hydrated hair!

Do you have any recipes for homemade hair treatments you’d like to share with our readers?

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DIY: Moisturizing Body Oil

At Y&L we have talked a lot about the importance of moisturizing, especially your face. But today we want to focus on giving the rest of your body some TLC. Soft, smooth, and hydrated skin keeps you looking and feeling great. But keeping your skin soft and hydrated gets complicated with the cooler and drier weather of the fall and winter months. For the longest time I would layer on store bought lotion daily (sometimes more than once!) thinking it was the best I could do to fight dry skin. And when I decided to switch to safe and natural body products, I looked into creating my own lotion. Recipes called for a long list of ingredients and the use of a stove… a little too much work for me given how much lotion I use. So I started considering a body oil—and now I am a body oil convert! It is so simple to make, and when you apply the oil before toweling off in the shower you seal in all that extra moisture. My skin is softer and happier than ever! If you’ve never used body oil as a daily moisturizer give this recipe a try. It’s very affordable compared to store bought brands and contains no harmful ingredients! You can use whichever essential oils you like to create a unique scent. Here is my recipe!

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup organic unrefined coconut oil
  • 1/4 cup jojoba oil
  • 1/4 cup almond oil
  • 10-15 drops of your favorite essential oil (feel free to mix or match just keep it around 15 drops total). I love mixing vanilla and orange essential oils for a sweet scent!
  • Glass bottle, jar with a airtight top or stopper. I use a teal glass soap pump I purchased from Target to store my oil in!

Directions:

  1. Depending on the temperature in your home, you may need to warm the coconut oil before you can easily pour it. Just put the jar of oil in a bowl of warm water or run it under hot water to liquefy it.
  2. Combine all three oils and the essential oils of your choice into the glass bottle, jar, or soap pump and shake it up!
  3. Apply your body oil after your shower before you towel off for optimal moisture retention!

What are your favorite scents for this body oil recipe?

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Celebrate With Y&L Style Bar & Learn Makeup Tips From the Pros!

Have you always wanted to learn the tricks and techniques of makeup professionals? Do you want to relax while getting ready for dinner out with friends? Or, do you want to share the bonding experience of beauty with your daughter(s)? Well if you answered yes to any of those questions than gather up your friends or kids and go to a style bar or salon that accommodates groups and parties!

It is so much fun to just hang out and be a girl with other girls! Chat with the stylists and makeup artists to learn tips and tricks while they makeover your look. After you and your friends are made up and relaxed consider going out to celebrate with a fancy lunch or dinner at your favorite restaurant! If you are interested in celebrating a birthday, or simply having a girls night out call your local salon and see if you can arrange a party. AND if you are in the San Francisco Bay area, call Y&L Style Bar ((408) 868-5569), and let us create a beautiful celebration for you!

Or just stop in to see us at:

14410 Big Basin Way
Ste E
Saratoga, CA 95070

 

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Real People In Fashion Ads?

The other morning I came across an interesting article while getting my dose of daily news: ‘When Fashion and Reality Collide.’ The CNN article by Emanuella Grinberg talks about how high-fashion brands like Lanvin are using real people in the ads to generate more buzz for their lines and demonstrate that beauty comes in many varieties. One quote from the article that stood out for me was from Ari Cohen (who writes the Advanced Style Blog we have mentioned before):

“I think the message is to embrace individuality and personal style, and alternative notions of beauty,” Cohen said. “It’s hugely important to show more diversity in advertising. By focusing on super young models and too much Photoshopping, advertisers set up unreal expectations for consumers.”

At Y&L we love the idea of using real people as models, and showing that beauty comes in a variety of ages, shapes, and sizes. That’s why we used our own friends like Becky Hellwig (the beauty shown to the right), to show off our signature looks!

You can check out more real people featured as models on our Facebook page by clicking here! And you can continue reading the CNN article about how other brands are using real people in their ad campaigns by clicking here.

What do you think about companies using real people as models? Have you ever been in a modeling gig (without prior experience)? What was it like for you?

 

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Must-Have Makeup Bags

Oh the carryall bag… it’s the little bag you keep in your purse, backpack, or car that safely stores your beauty goods, mints, feminine products, phone, etc. I’m due for an upgrade, and after perusing the web and several stores I have assembled a list of adorable bags. I just can’t decide which one to get. Which one is your favorite?

Medium Fold Over Hippo BagEtsy $15

Hippos! This fabric is too cute!

Medium Chevron Fold Over Makeup BagEtsy $18

Chevron, and orange chevron at that is pretty rad.

Waterproof Pouch Cosmetic Bag in Owl PrintEtsy $12

Who doesn’t ❤ owls?

Geo Zip Makeup BagEtsy $16

Great graphic print from a San Francisco based designer <3.

Waterproof Pink Elephant Makeup Bag -Etsy $17

Love the adorable elephant print, the fact that it is waterproof, AND the designer is based in San Francisco!

Small Woodland Animals Makeup Bag – Etsy ~ $19

The print and the little charm on the zipper are absolutely adorable!

So which one would you go with?

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