Health & Beauty
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How to Start an Exercise Group
This is right around the time of year when all willpower goes out the window — which is why it's even more important to stick with a fitness routine. Organizing a fitness group is a simple way to a) avoid gym fees, and b) find motivation in numbers. Here's how to organize a group that will give you the results you want for a mere fraction of the gym price (you might even have a little fun — don't roll your eyes at us).
Control Your Invites
Blasting an invitation to everyone in your address book might seem like a great idea, but your good intentions could backfire. Be selective — invite 5â7 people to start. Look for friends who don't already have a gym membership or a consistent exercise routine.
Communication and consistency are key to your group's success. Once you've assembled a handful of participants, email an exercise schedule to them. Indicate the date, time, location and type of exercise you'll be doing. Ask group members to RSVP, and include equipment information (weights, jump ropes, balance balls, etc.). See if group members have extra equipment to bring to help keep costs down.
Don't let rain, wind or snow ruin your outdoor exercise date. Just make sure to have a bad-weather backup plan ready to go. Move the group into someone's home, under a covered shelter, or into a clubhouse or public facility. If the equipment is too much to lug around in bad weather, break out an exercise DVD or check your TV listings for exercise shows.
Every few meet-ups, check in with members to see how they're doing with their personal-fitness goals. Big or small, every success should be celebrated; celebrations boost morale and motivate others to keep moving in the right direction.
Maximize Your Wardrobe
Ladies and Gentlemen: You don't have to spend a fortune to look like a million bucks. These priceless tips help stretch even the smallest shopping budget simply by taking current styles up a notch.
Belt it Out
Break out those belts — they instantly transform any look. Buckle a belt over a dress or tunic to glam up your ensemble. Cinch it for a defined waistline or wear loose for an Ã¼ber-chic bohemian look.
Dress to Impress
Don't relocate last-season's dresses to back of the closet — revitalize them with accessories! For a fresh daytime look, pair an upscale dress with ballet flats and a floppy hat. For night, add flair to a casual, little black dress. Use bangles, an embellished handbag and heels for sassy sophistication.
Glam it Up
Dig through your jewelry box — you've probably got a few awesome costume pieces that you haven't worn in ages. Break them out! Pair a funky watch and a bold necklace with a basic T-shirt and boyfriend jeans. Or, spice up a tunic and skinny jeans with sparkly earrings and a large, eye-catching ring.
A Great Sports Coat
This all-purpose garment comes in a variety of classic colors, including khaki, charcoal and black, and works well with just about anything. Dressed up with slacks or down with jeans, the right sports coat can be his go-to closet staple for years.
It's in the Jeans
An absolute must-have is a dark-blue pair of jeans. They look sharp and go with just about anything — just make sure they have a modern fit (sit just below the hips) and that they don't bunch at the ankle. While a pair of jeans will last a while, he should buy a new pair every few years.
All Tied Up
The modern tie has come a long way from its wide-width, fuddy-duddy predecessors, and worn properly, it can make practically any ensemble look incredibly hip. With slimmer widths and energetic colors, a tie can be worn casually or dressy — turning a standard outfit into a memorable fashion statement.
Guys: What Facial-Hair Style Is Right for You?
Attention guys with a penchant for facial hair: Are you thinking of growing a mustache, a goatee or some mutton chops? Not so fast. Before you trim your facial hair into what you guess will look good, take this fun quiz to find out if it will look good.
1. What shape is your face?
Go for a slender style — it will streamline your face and make it appear slimmer. A thin, light beard is a great choice for your features.
You know those dudes that sport a perpetual five o'clock shadow? You should be one of them. This look will work wonders to visually shorten your face and balance your features.
Complement a round face with a light to medium moustache/goatee combo. It will make your face seem a bit more oval. Avoid thick sideburns — they might make your face look rounder.
A fuller beard will help your chin seem less pointed, adding more to your jaw line. Plus, a semi-unkempt beard like this is almost effortless to maintain. Score!
Add balance with a light to semi-full beard, as well as longer sideburns. Once you achieve this style, just use scissors and a razor to maintain it.
2. How much time are you willing to spend maintaining your facial hair?
- As much as it takes
- A few minutes, tops
- As little as possible
As much as it takes
You're into maintaining your facial hair, yes? In that case, any style is fair game. Of course, you could go clean-shaven every day, but a well-groomed beard or goatee would look cool and stylish.
A few minutes, tops
While you crave a cool facial-hair look, you're not about to block out an hour each day to maintain it. Try the five o'clockâshadow look or medium-thin beard — they're low-maintenance and add an element of style to your look.
As little as possible
Looking for a low-effort look? A full beard is the answer. Just be sure to trim near the neckline every few days. If you're not ready for the full lumberjack look, try running clippers over your face every few days for a masculine, permanent-stubble look.
3. How thick/sparse is your facial hair?
- Light and patchy
- Grows out fully, in time
- Dense as an untouched forest
Light and patchy
No worries. There's a look for you, even if you don't think you've got enough to pull it off. Go with a light beard, using clippers to trim down the longer parts until the shorter ones catch up. Chances are, your moustache and goatee area might grow in thicker, so going with one of those while keeping the rest of your face clean-shaven is an option as well.
Grows out fully, in time
You're good to go. All you need is some patience. If some areas grow a little thinner or slower than others, take care to do light passes with clippers over the thicker areas until the thinner ones catch up.
Dense as an untouched forest
You're the (hairy) man! You can probably sport any style of facial hair you like, and in less time than it might take others. The only downside: With that amount of hair, you'll have to learn to love trimming. Get ready to spend extra effort on trimming and keeping the hairless areas clean.
4. Do you want to look:
Try a trendy moustache/goatee combo. Or go for growing out a complete thick beard, which is a hot look right now.
You're all about style and refinement, so looking scruffy just isn't an option. Try a normal to thin moustache, or a light goatee that tells people you're a man of the world. The key is to keep everything well-groomed.
Want to look rough and rugged? You're going to have to work for it! Grow a full beard, and just clean up the neckline every once in a while. For a more work-appropriate style, try a classic thick moustache — it's totally manly and very back in style.