How to Take the Perfect Selfie

16 Feb
 Posted by Herbalife Nutrition  0 Comment
Eyes open, and smile.

Whether you like to take pictures or shy away from the camera, it seems that it’s nearly impossible to avoid taking a selfie at some point. Since these pictures will most likely be plastered all over social media, here are a few tips to make sure your selfies come out picture perfect!

I just came back from a huge event in Chicago, Illinois, called an Herbalife Extravaganza, where there were thousands of people in attendance. There were so many photo opportunities and everyone was taking “selfies” to post to their respective social media sites. People would say, “Jacquie, take a selfie with me for Facebook, I’ll tag you.” Or, “Take a selfie with me so I can put it on Twitter.” A few of us started laughing because everyone was posting photos of themselves at a rapid pace. Then I got worried. After taking so many selfies, I realized I could potentially look like a hot mess out there in cyber world. So, I thought, ‘I can’t be the only one with some awful photos online.’ It’s time to master the art of taking a proper selfie.

Everyone these days has some kind of social media account. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and so many other platforms are just loaded with selfies. For those who might have been asleep for the last few years, a selfie is defined in the dictionary as “a photograph that is taken by oneself with a digital camera or a front facing smartphone, tablet or webcam, especially for posting on a social-networking or photo sharing website.” And trust me, everyone is doing it.

I’ve seen some amazing selfies. I’ve seen celebrities and people I know post the most amazing group or individual selfies. Alternatively, I’ve heard of a few selfies that have broken up marriages. Let’s just say they were a bit over exposed, if you know what I mean. And then there are some selfies where I’m more interested in what’s going on in the background than the person in the photo.

There’s definitely an art to creating a good selfie. I’ve been part of some disastrous selfies where half of my head is cut out, the lighting is off, I look 10 years older, my face looks grainy or the angle makes me look like I gained 10 pounds. It’s difficult to be both behind the camera and in front of the camera, so lets get to the bottom of this and learn 8 tips on how to take some perfect pictures.

Here are some top tips for the perfect selfie

Take a quick look at yourself

This tip should be obvious but you’d be surprised. It’s important to give yourself a quick once over before the picture is taken. This isn’t a big deal if it’s just you in the photo, because you can simply hit delete and take another one. But think about the group selfie that your friend tagged you in on Instagram. Your friend looked perfect while your hair was sticking up, your eyeliner was smudged or you had food on your face. Friends only post the selfies that they look great in. Trust me.

Be aware of what’s behind you

If you truly want to be the focus of your selfie, then make sure you check out your background. There is nothing worse than a selfie taken in a messy bedroom. I always check out the backgrounds in photos. You can see what kind of furniture people have, if they leave their clothes on the floor, what kind of food they eat. A good background is important. I recently saw a selfie where a guy was smiling from ear to ear as someone’s house was burning to the ground behind him. Not Cool. Look for solid colored backdrops or unique textures to really make your photos pop. A messy background can really ruin a good selfie.

Lighting is everything

No doubt about it, lighting is the most important thing when it comes to taking a good photo. Indoor lighting is never the best. It’s just not as flattering as natural light. It’s all about the sun. The sunlight can be our best friend when it comes to snapping that perfect pic. For the best result, try facing the sun. When it’s behind you, it can cause a lot of unflattering shadows.

There’s strength in numbers

The beauty of today’s cameras and mobile devices is that they can take hundreds of pics at a rapid pace.  So, click away. Change it up a bit with every click, even if it’s just slightly moving the position of your head with a little tilt. It’s rare to get the perfect selfie when you take just one picture. The more pics you take, the better your chances are of capturing a really awesome photo.

Strike a pose

The best thing about a selfie is that you can take it when you’re all alone. Have fun and don’t take yourself too seriously. You can practice your poses and your angles, and you can get that perfect reach down so your arm isn’t in the picture. The more selfies you take, the more you can critique. When you finally get that perfect photo, the one that shows off your muscles and your sexy little smile, you can practice duplicating it. So, when your friend wants to take a selfie with you at the gym, you’ll be ready to breakout your signature pose with all of your angles just right. While you’re practicing, just remember to delete the ridiculous ones immediately! You never know who might get their hands on them.

Edit your selfies before you post

Sometimes we get all caught up in the moment and just want to get our pics out on social media immediately. We want to see how many likes, comments or shares we can get and we don’t want to wait. But slow down. If you want your photos to be the best, you may have to do a little bit of editing before they are posted. This only takes a couple of minutes, and many cameras and phones have the capabilities of cleaning up photos prior to posting. You can crop, brighten, reduce red eye and even turn your selfie into an amazing black and white or sepia photo with just a few screen taps. A good filter can even make a blemish disappear. So, take the time to do a little self-editing before you post. You’ll be happy you waited.

Rock the silly selfies

OK, lets face it, we all get sick of seeing our friends’ photos that are exactly the same over and over again. The clothing and the scenery may change, but the face and the pose are exactly the same. Yes, you need to find the perfect pose, but once in a while you also need to let loose and just get goofy. These are selfies that become the most memorable and the ones that get shared and liked the most. So, make a silly face or wear a crazy hat. If you’re doing a group selfie get everyone to make crazy faces like they are surprised, scared, sexy, whatever. Just have fun. The end result will be worth it.

Front camera vs. back camera – the great debate

I’ll be honest: I like to use the front facing option on my smartphone to take my selfies. This is the feature that allows you to take a photo of yourself like you’re looking in a mirror. The great debate, however, says they aren’t as good in quality as the back-facing camera. With the back-facing camera, you take a photo and then turn the phone around to look at the picture. Admittedly, with the back-facing camera I have to take a dozen pics to get the right one. With a front-facing camera, I can see what I look like and practice my pout before I hit the button. Front-facing photos have a lower resolutions, I’ve been told. I guess this is a personal choice.  Be sure to practice using the back and front camera so you can see the difference and decide what’s best for you.

***

Taking the perfect selfie can be very challenging when you have to direct and star in your own photo shoot. Executing your perfect pose while finding good lighting is hard enough, and having a steady arm that doesn’t wobble can also be a pain. Be as still as possible, take a deep breath, relax, hold your pose and click away. Sunlight, your good side, a little tilt of the head, and you have the perfect selfie.

And just for fun, here are selfies of my friends Susan Bowerman and Samantha Clayton. You’ll see that what makes a really great selfie is a personal, friendly approach.

How to master the perfect ‘selfie’How to master the perfect ‘selfie’

Tips to Keep Your Hands Healthy and Youthful-Looking

09 Aug

 Posted by Herbalife Nutrition  0 Comment

For good skin care, the hands have it.

Are your hands looking as healthy as they should be? Let’s explore some different hand creams and tips to keep your hands in tip-top shape.

Our hands are our number one tool for work and expression. They are busy most of the day doing something. And they can be quite the focal point for others to look at. Are your hands looking as healthy as they should? Are you taking extra precautions to make sure they are representing the rest of you to the best of their ability? Let’s explore some different hand creams and tips to keep your hands in tip-top shape.

One of the quickest ways to show someone your “true” age is through your hands. How they feel and how they look is very important. Have you ever shaken someone’s hand and were startled by how rough and gruff it felt? Or, have you experienced the exact opposite and felt something so smooth and soft you thought they must live in a pair of gloves? Our hands are our number one tools. And above and beyond any other body part, they are exposed to very harsh chemicals, dirt and the sun.

Think about how many times we clean our hands in a day just to remove dirt and germs. Our hands are always exposed to the elements and weather conditions. And the cold, wind and sun, above all, can damage our hands and cause them to age prematurely.

The palms of our hands are much thicker than the thin skin on the back of our hands. As we age, our collagen and elastin is compromised and we experience the loss of fat. When this happens, the veins on the back of our hands tend to stand out more, our knuckles are more pronounced, we develop spots, fine lines and even wrinkles. So, what can we do? Invest in a good hand cream or lotion and make you use it several times throughout the day. It won’t improve the structure of your hands, but it can help them look better.

There are many different kinds of hand creams and lotions from which to choose. Focus on what is most important to you. Are your hands too dry, cracked and wrinkled? Or, are you starting to notice those pesky dark spots? Here are a few good options to explore.

Moisturizing Hand Creams

The hands need moisture as much as any other part of the body. This is due to their constant exposure to harsh chemicals, the weather and especially the damaging UVA and UVB rays of the sun. Repeated washing throughout the day compromises our skin’s natural moisture barrier, causing hands to become dry and, unfortunately, older looking than they should. When the skin and cuticles become dry, little cracks can form on the skin which can open the door to infection. Added moisture helps to plump the skin, which in turn makes them look more youthful. A moisturizing hand cream that contains Aloe vera, shea butter or olive oil are great choices to keep your skin hydrated, soft and smooth.

Tip: Definitely opt for creams instead of lotions, as they are a bit thicker and richer in texture and tend to be much more hydrating then a lotion.

Sun Protection SPF for Healthy Hands

SPF is a must when it comes to protecting your hands. Even minimal daily exposure to the sun can lead to long-term damage, and potentially skin cancer. Think about all of those little moments in the sun, walking your dog, driving to the market, riding your bike or mowing the lawn. By using a hand cream with at least SPF 30, you can help minimize the potential damage. The key to protecting the skin from the damaging rays of the sun is reapplication during the day. If you have washed or rubbed your hands, chances are you’ve compromised the effectiveness of your hand cream.

Tip: Keep a bottle of SPF-infused hand cream in your handbag and in your car to ensure you always have protection on hand. No pun intended. Yes, just minimal exposure to the sun while driving on a daily basis can negatively impact the appearance of the back of your hands. The same can apply to walking your dog or that bike ride first thing in the morning. Prevention is key.

Anti-aging hand creams are becoming more popular in an attempt to improve the appearance of some of the damage that we already have on the backs of our hands. Besides wrinkles and creases in our skin, we also have to be concerned with age and sun spots. To help improve the look of aging skin, choose hand creams or lotions that contain retinol or alpha hydroxyl acids. These ingredients will exfoliate the skin to help remove dead skin build-up. By revealing the younger skin cells beneath, your skin will definitely look and feel more youthful.

Some Top Tips for Healthy Hands

No matter what kind of hand cream or lotion you are looking for, always check to make sure it contains antioxidant vitamins A, C and E. And don’t forget to eat antioxidant-enriched foods to nourish the living skin. Citrus fruits are my personal favorite.

  • Keep your favorite hand cream next to your sink, and get in the routine of applying right after you wash your hands.
  • Be sure to massage your cream into your nails and cuticles to keep them hydrated.
  • Invest in travel-sized products and keep them everywhere. At your desk, in your purse, gym bag, nightstand and even in the cup holder in your car.
  • Don’t smoke. Smoking will make your skin, including the skin on your hands, look older and more wrinkled. And if that isn’t bad enough, it can also stain your fingers and fingernails.
  • Wash your hands with warm water, not water that is too hot, as the extreme temperature can strip your skin of its healthy oils.
  • Wear gloves when working with your hands to protect them from harsh chemicals, dirt, detergents and anything else that could scratch or puncture your skin. Protection from infection is very important.
  • Apply your favorite hand cream just before bedtime and sleep wearing cotton gloves. You will wake up to softer, smoother hands. Keep your hand cream on your nightstand so you never forget.

If you’re going to go to the trouble of adorning your hands with sparkly jewelry and bright nail polish colors, then it’s important to practice these few little extra steps to keep your hands protected, soft, smooth and more youthful-looking.

Investing in a good hand cream is a great way to keep your hands looking and feeling softer, smoother and more youthful. Healthy hands down!

High Protein Breakfast Helps With Fat Loss

15 Apr
 Posted by Susan Bowerman, MS, RD, CSSD, FAND  0 Comment

 

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High Protein Breakfast Helps with Fat Loss

Eggs: A high protein breakfast option.

Here’s a great reason to eat a high protein breakfast – you may eat fewer calories for the rest of the day and lose body fat, too.

While most people do manage to eat something in the morning, there are still about 31 million Americans – about 10% of the population – who routinely skip breakfast. Not surprisingly, the numbers are highest among teens and young adults – many of whom say they simply don’t have time to eat breakfast in the morning. But, even for those who do eat breakfast, it’s hardly protein-packed – the top three breakfast foods in America are cold cereal, toast and bananas.1

Related Article: 5 diet mistakes you need to avoid

Even though breakfast is often called “the most important meal of the day” – and a healthy habit that has been linked to a reduced risk of weight gain – much of the benefit may depend on what that meal actually consists of.

In a recent study conducted at the University of Missouri,2 researchers recruited 28 overweight students who routinely skipped breakfast at least five days a week. The aim of the study was to compare the effects of two different 350-calorie breakfasts (a “standard” protein meal with 13 grams of protein vs. a high protein breakfast with 35 grams of protein) on hunger, food intake and body weight over a period of twelve weeks.

The students were randomly divided into two groups, and were provided a daily breakfast meal of either cereal and milk (the standard protein group) or one that included eggs, dairy products and lean meat (the high protein group). A third group of breakfast-skippers served as a control – they were asked to simply continue skipping breakfast as they usually did.

Those in the high protein group had more stable blood sugar levels throughout the day, and the students reported that the breakfast helped them to feel more full during the day, too. In fact, those who ate the high protein breakfast every morning ended up eating less food over the course of the day – about 400 calories less than their usual intake – which led to a loss of body fat.

On the other hand, those who ate the lower protein breakfast – or skipped the meal altogether – gained body fat over the 12 weeks. This is worth noting, since many breakfast-skippers defend their habit in the belief it will save them calories and lead to weight loss.

The study was small and only included young adults, so it is yet to be seen if the same effects would be seen in a larger group of people. The study does, however, provide additional evidence that protein helps with appetite control, and that eating a relatively high protein breakfast may help to set the stage for more calorie-controlled choices for the rest of the day.*

The key to eating 35 grams of protein within a 350-calorie limit is to choose high-quality proteins – like eggs and egg whites, nonfat and low fat dairy products (milk, cottage cheese, Greek yogurt) and lean meats, as well as protein powders that can be added to shakes or stirred into scrambled eggs for a protein boost.

Here are a few high protein breakfast ideas, all with less than 350 calories.

  • Protein shake made with 2 scoops Herbalife® Formula 1 Nutritional Shake mix, 1 scoop Herbalife Personalized Protein Powder, 1 cup (240mL) lowfat milk, ½ cup vanilla Greek-style yogurt and fruit. (36g protein, 280 calories)
  • 1 cup low fat cottage cheese topped with 1 diced hard-boiled egg and chopped mixed vegetables (tomatoes, peppers, cucumber), sprinkled with salt and pepper. (34g protein, 265 calories)
  • 5 ounces (150g) canned salmon mixed with a dab of mustard; spread on 5 whole grain crackers and top with sliced tomato. (33g protein, 300 calories)
  • 1 slices 100% whole grain toast spread topped with 4 ounces (120g) sliced turkey breast and ¼ sliced avocado. (37g protein, 320 calories)
  • Protein breakfast pudding: whip 1 cup nonfat Greek-style yogurt (any flavor) in the blender with 2 scoops Herbalife Personalized Protein Powder, 1 TBSP chia seeds and 1 cup diced fresh fruit. (34g protein, 300 calories)

https://www.npd.com/wps/portal/npd/us/news/press-releases/pr_111011b/

2Bauer LB et al. Int J Obesity. June 1, 2015.

*This study was not conducted using Herbalife® products. Herbalife Formula 1 Nutritional Shake Mix has less protein and fewer calories (18g protein and 210 total calories when prepared as directed with 8 oz low fat milk) than the meals used in the study.

Susan Bowerman is Director of Nutrition Training at Herbalife. Susan is a Registered Dietitian and a Board-Certified Specialist in Sports Dietetics.

  •  Posted by Susan Bowerman, MS, RD, CSSD, FAND  0 Comment