Beauty Quick Fixes


Expert Has Answers For Sudden Snags, And Ways To Hasten Your Routines

No matter how good you look, things can happen. Maybe you have a broken nail, or your self-tan came out a little streaky. Here are quick tips to handle those small annoyances.


Duck your hands in a bowl of ice-cold water.

Another option: Blast nails with cold air from a hair dryer between coats. This helps the layer of color to dry as you go.

Quick tip: Old nail polish can take forever to dry, since time can turn polish gooey and thick. Toss bottles when the polish begins to change color or separate.

Tip from a Real Simple reader: Use dryer sheets to take off nail polish. It’s faster and more effective than cotton balls, since they’re slightly more abrasive.


Patch it with a tea bag. Cut a tiny piece of paper from a tea bag (it should be big enough to cover the entire tear), apply a bead of nail glue to the paper (Krazy Glue works in a pinch), then press it on top of the tear. Allow the glue to dry, then gently file the top of the paper so it’s smooth and flush with the nail. Finish with a layer of base coat, two coats of polish, and a topcoat.

Quick tip: Wear rubber gloves when washing dishes or using cleaning products. Water and chemicals can weaken nails and make them more likely to tear.


Sweep a cotton ball soaked in 100 percent lemon juice over streaky areas. It smoothes away unevenly applied tanner by sloughing overly tanned skin cells.

Another option: Massage plain baking soda onto damp skin with small, gentle circular motions Baking soda will slough off freshly dyed cells and real un-tanned skin underneath.

Quick tip: Cut your self-tanner with moisturizer. Mix equal parts of each in your palm and blend them together before applying. The diluted tanner will give you a more natural color.


Wrap a bag of frozen vegetables in a thin towel and place it over your eyes for ten minutes. The cold of the bag stimulates circulation under the eyes, which helps bring down swelling.

A soft wash cloth soaked in chamomile tea will have the same effect, since chamomile has anti-inflammatory properties.

Quick tip: If you know you’ll be drinking alcohol or eating salty foods, be sure to drink lots of water. You’ll be less likely to puff out the next morning.


To avoid bed head and creases on your face, sleep on a silk pillow. It’s comfortable, and it keeps straight hair smooth and won’t frizz or flatten natural curls.


Splash warm water on your skin, then massage in a moisturizer. Skin cells contain fluid that acts as a cushion to keep the skin plump. Massaging the moisturizer in helps to smooth creases away manually.

Quick tip: Sleep on a smooth -fitting satin pillow case instead of a cotton one. Satin won’t bunch up under the skin, so you may be spared morning creases.
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