Beauty Secrets

Nana's MUD!

Nana in 1917 at 16
I have been asked to give another one of Nana's beauty secrets and I know she'd be thrilled that people are interested in her potions today.  All my young life, Nana preached about having beautiful skin.  "Sharrie," she'd say "the first thing people notice is your eyes and your skin, and you only get one chance at a first impression."  Nana believed that your skin was your "calling card," and either draws people to you or sends them away. 
      I can still see her mixing up a batch of  "mud" as she called it, while I sat in wonder as a little girl.  She'd mix a couple of tablespoons of rice flour, a capsule of vitamin E, a little rosewater and enough yogurt to make it the consistency of putty.  Next she'd smear it all over her face and neck, lay on the floor sometimes on her hydroculators and rest her legs on a chair so the blood would flow in reverse, and relax her tired muscles.
Now this wasn't a Kodak moment and few people ever had the pleasure of witnessing this "secret of the Harem," but I never forgot it. To this day I refuse to buy over the counter skin masques, because there is nothing better than Nana's Mud.  It brings the blood to the surface and feeds the skin with nutrients.  By the way it's funny that her son, my dad Bill, called his mother MUD!  Give it a try and let me know what you think.  If you want to know more about Nana, buy my Book right now on Amazon, kick back and enjoy the full spa treatment, while reading "The Maybelline Story."


     Who would have guessed that Nana's beauty secrets would become so popular.

Take Ponds Cold Cream for example. When Nana was a teenager during WW1, she was already a fan of the miracle cream that kept her skin moisturized while also removing her Maybelline.  As more expensive moisturizing creams became available through the years, Nana continued her nightly routine with Ponds Cold Cream.  In fact she made a science out of it until she perfected it into a facial as good as it gets.


 Here's Nana's secret to flawless dewy skin, a trick that kept her looking 20 years younger than her actual age, until the day she died at 77.  

     As a girl, I'd sit in her bathroom at night watching her apply ice cold Ponds Cold Cream, which she kept in the refrigerator right next to the tea bags she had ready to depuff her tired eyes. 
     "Darling, first you remove all your Maybelline, face makeup and lipstick with Ponds," she'd say, washing her ponds off with a hot  towel, holding it on her face for a minute until it cooled down.  
     Next she'd reapply the Ponds, but this time, sitting down in her chair in front of a magnifying mirror where she could study every line on her face. 
     "Always stroke up, never down darling," she'd say as I followed her example for the next two or three minutes.  She'd stroke her neck 100 times, then do the same thing with her face, using quick strokes from the chin, to the cheeks, around the temples and up to the forehead.  
     "It takes practice," she'd say making sure I did it correctly.
     "Do it again darling, but this time start at the chin, go around the nose and up to the forhead until your skin is bright pink from the blood coming to the surface."
     Once she was satisfied with the results, she'd apply a hot  towel several times until all traces of the Ponds were removed, then wash her face with Neutrogena skin soap.  
     Once this labor of love was finished, she'd apply her home made mud pack (Check out the recipe for Nana's Mud, by scrolling down through my blog), apply the tea bags to her eyes (also found in past blogs), lay on her hydroculators (this too, just scroll down) and relax listening to classical music for the next half hour. 
     When she washed off the Ponds, or the mud pack, she'd soak a cotton ball with Witch hazel, wipe it over her face and neck as an astringent, than apply eye cream, face cream and hand lotion. She'd top it all off by brushing her hair 100 times, looking radiant when she finally went to bed. 
     To this day I still practice most of Nana's beauty tricks and I must say my skin looks pretty good for my age.  Give it a try once a week or more if you have time and experience a facial as good as any professional could give you.  If you want to read more about Nana's obsession to perfection, read about her in my book, The Maybelline Story.  Purchase a signed copy from my website today!  

Pond's vanishing cream print advertisement, 1910

Secret of the Harem!   Nana Style.

Loretta Young Photoplay Magazine Cover November 1930 Loretta Young

     When Nana was a young girl, in 1915, she like most young ladies of her time, read a movie magazine called Photoplay, that revealed Secrets of the Harem, so to speak.  The secrets were homemade beauty tricks passed on from one generation to the next and were built upon as the ages unfolded. Nana and her sisters,Verona and Bunny learned the tricks, to make themselves as glamorous and alluring as the silent screen stars.

     I was indoctrinated into the Harem when at 5 years old, when Nana  made my eyes up and paraded me around my great uncle Tom Lyle's living room for applause.  From that time on, Nana became my mentor and I her little protege. 
     One of her delicious little secrets for depuffing your eyes "after a late night romp with Valentino" she'd wink, was TEA BAGS
      Yes, just plain old black tea bags.  But there was more.  First you place two tea bags in a half cup of boiling water for about 30 seconds, just to get the tea moving.  Next, you  gently squeeze out the excess water and place them on a small plate.  Now stick them in the freezer until they are ice cold.  Lay down for half hour if possible but at least 15 minutes and meditate on how gorgeous you are going to look with your Maybelline eyes tonight.  Let me know what you think, I bet you will be begging for more of Nana's fabulous Secrets of the Harem. 

Nana's Beauty Secret for staying young. 

One of Nana's beauty secrets that kept her amazingly youthful until her death at 77, was hot steam packs.  I too have been using them for over 30 years and here is why...  Hydroculators are what chiropractors use to relax a patient's tight back after an injury or stress from compression.  Nana had been in a couple of accidents and loved how the hydroculators relaxed not only her back but the stress on her face.  You see, the steam from the pack is able to penetrate so deep it gets blood back into pinched nerves and relaxes them completely.  I have to admit that after lying on

my hydroculators or hot steam packs I sleep like a baby.

Evelyn relaxing at her new home in West Los Angles, California, 1938.

Relaxation is one of Miss Maybelline's Beauty Secrets.

After Evelyn and Bill followed Tom Lyle to California he bought them a little bungalow in West Los Angeles, a few miles from the Villa Valentino in the Hollywood Hills where he and Emery lived. Tom Lyle gave Evelyn a nice allowance and told her to rest and enjoy the California sunshine. She took his advice about relaxing but never ever allowed the sun to touch her perfect alabaster skin for more than 10 minutes, just enough to soak in a little vitamin D.

Speaking of soaking, I remember one of Nana's most famous beauty secrets, was soaking in a hot tub with three cups of Epsom salt and sometimes even a cup of baking soda to soften her skin. She told me there was nothing in the world better for relaxing tense muscles after a game of badminton than a half hour in the tub with Epsom Salt. She believed that a good soak erased a multitude of sins and kept her looking young all her life.

When I became a teenager I soaked in an Epsom Salt bath before getting dressed for a Saturday night date. I believed it slimmed me down so I could fit in my "skinny pants" in 1964, and it was so relaxing that I felt like a million bucks and looked fabulous. Try it yourself and see if it doesn't make you feel relaxed and look beautiful too.

Read more about Nana and her obsession with perfection in the Maybelline Story.

          Maybelline's very own Rosie the Riveter:

Rosie the Riveter was one of the most widely known persona's of the 1940s. With her sleeves rolled up, hair in a kerchief, and a determined set to her jaw and eyes. Rosie had it all: beauty, sex appeal, and attitude.

The Ad Council, at the government’s request, created Rosie the Riveter to persuade women to go to work and Rosie the Riveter with her can-do attitude become a feminist icon for all American girl's fighting to bring their man home from the War. Every wife, mother, sister, aunt, cousin, girlfriend and fiance' took on the ambiance of strength and Independence - and no one more than my grandmother Evelyn, or Nana as I called her. The only difference between Rosie and Nana was Rosie really went to work and Nana went to work on her famous beauty secrets that kept her looking forever young.

Here she is, Maybelline's very own "Evelyn the Riveter!" Posing for posterity, never wanting to miss a trick, always the first to "keep up." However I imagine she had just conditioned her hair and wanted to keep it under wraps for a while. I remember Nana's famous homemade hair conditioners. One was used to nourish and strengthen the hair with protein and one was used for deep moisturizing.

Depending on what was needed after a good dye-job, a day in the sun which was rare because of Nana's flawless ivory skin, or just for the fun of it - she'd whip up a concoction that only the

brave of heart might try or someone obsessed with perfection and pleanty of time to experiment.

Imagine warm Coconut Oil mixed with an egg yoke, whipped up like mayonnaise, poured on top of the head, massaged well into the scalp and bagged up for an hour. Or even more bazaar, real mayonnaise with an extra hit of vitamin E to really seep deep into the shaft of the hair - again bagged up for an hour.

And what did she do for an hour? Well remember the egg white left over - she'd whip it up and paint it on her face of course! Why waste a good egg white when you can tighten your skin at the same time!

I have tried Nana's conditioners and can say if you have the time, patience and can endure the mess they work big time. So if any of you try Nana's beauty secret for deep conditioning the hair let me know what you think. Oh also, use a moisture free shampoo twice after conditioning and maybe a "leave in" conditioner to comb through the hair.

Humm, I think I have some Coconut oil and and an egg yoke come to think of it. See you tomorrow for another great post - and don't forget to read my book and learn more about Nana - her obsession with beauty and those "Maybelline Times" of course!

Beauty secret for making hair grow faster be healthier and look fabulous

One of my grandmother's favorite actresses in the 1930's was May West, famous for saying  "Why don't you come up and see me some time." In this article West gives a few beauty secrets on make-up and being beautiful. Nana too had a big bag of beauty secrets which you can see on my website under Beauty Secrets, and here is another one of her favorites for beautiful hair.

Raw fertile egg yokes for making hair grow faster, be stronger and have an unmistakable healthy shine. 

 I know this sounds strange but no other egg found in the world will work quite as well as a raw fertile egg. You must find the egg now day's in Health Food Stores that carry raw butter, milk and eggs. Raw fertile eggs have the membrane of the Rooster in them and you absolutely only use the yoke. You can beat the egg white and use it as a tightening face mask (one of Nana's famous tricks,) but only the yoke is used in this method.

Just pop the fertile egg yoke in a blender with two cups of fresh squeezed orange juice and you have a frothy "Orange Julius drink." It tastes wonderful and get's the protein into the body lickity split so it can start laying down strong cells and build healthy bones, hair and nails. Drink this twice a week and see if you don't notice difference in your hair, nails and how you generally feel.

Raw fertile eggs are a "perfect food," Nana would say, "pure, nutritious and a miracle food for anyone needing strength and energy." Raw fertile eggs are one of the best kept secrets in the world. Leave it to Nana to own the secrets of the fountain of youth.

How Much Does it Cost for Hair Extensions?

During the late 1960's I wore long Falls, which were made of real hair and cost hundreds of dollars. I also had wigs and hair pieces that I matched to what ever outfit I was wearing that evening. It took hours a week to care them. They sat pinned to head stands waiting to be washed, colored or styled.  Today having hair extensions is what all the Movie Stars and a few of my friends prefer.  If you are thinking to having the process and wonder how much it will cost here is some valuable information.

 If you’ve not had hair extensions before, you may be thinking that the process is going to break your bank. The good news? Not necessarily.

Most ladies come with a preconceived idea that hair extensions are either particularly cheap and they therefore look fake, or, that they are very expensive and cost thousands.

Sure, the ones you see Kim Kardashian wearing likely run in to the quadruple thousands of dollars a time. But the good news is, there is an area for middle ground with hair extensions and pricing. In other words, you can have affordable hair extensions that not only look really great, but also last.

And we are not referring to those temporary clip-in types either. We are talking about the sort of hair extensions that you can wear in a ponytail, you can have blown out, and you can do a workout in. in other words, they appear perfectly natural.

Hair extensions can be life changing since they may add length, volume, and provide much fuller hair instantaneously.

Most ladies wish to try hair extensions, at least the one time, and some women simply can’t live without them.

You might have fine or short hair, but you really want long, full hair. But how much is that going to be? The price of hair extensions will vary depending on the method used for installation, the quality of the hair, and where the extensions are applied.

Types and Pricing of Hair

Now, considering the cost of hair extensions, one thing you must determine is the type of hair that you want. Different types of hair work best in terms of budget and appearance.

-          Synthetic: Cheap, fake hair. Low-priced.

-          Non-Remy: Cheap, often low quality hair, and may be from the hairdresser’s floor. Low-priced.

-          Remy Human Hair: Remy human hair, which is of medium quality. Low- to mid-priced.

-          Remy Human Hair, with Cuticle Intact: this is the highest quality of Remy human hair. Mid-price range.

-          Virgin Cuticle Hair: this is the highest quality of hair that’s available. High-price range.

It’s worth noting that the higher quality of hair – from Remy human hair with cuticle intact up to virgin cuticle hair - is an investment. This will normally pay off, given that the hair lasts far longer than cheaper formats.

The synthetic types are low quality and really, this is not to be recommended. The best quality of hair is human hair, such as Indian hair, and if you can afford it, always opt for that.

With respect to human hair, there are a variety of grades. You will find that quality Remy human hair together with the cuticle intact is very high-grade. This will start at a few hundred dollars and move rapidly upward. This type of hair extension will generally last for around a year, and perhaps a bit longer.

Non-Remy hair is more affordable, but it will not last nearly as long.


The highest grade available is that of virgin hair which will last for 2-3 years, providing that it is maintained correctly. The prices vary, but for virgin hair in general, you’d be looking at a starting price of high-hundreds and moving swiftly into the thousands.

Keep in mind that the hair you are buying may seem cheap. There are two potential reasons for this – the grade is very low-end, and/ or, you’re only buying a small amount. You should calculate the price based on weight, and not merely quality.

Application and Maintenance

Once you’ve made your decision about the quality and the price with respect to your hair extensions, you then need to think about the method – DIY temporary job or semi-permanent solution?

Going for the DIY job will cost $0 in terms of application. For something longer-term, you’ll likely spend anything between $200 and $2000 at a salon, and that’s just for the application. Then, there’s the price of maintenance on top of this, which will be necessary every 2-3 months.

For obvious reasons, it’s important to understand how regularly you will need to return to the salon for upkeep and maintenance. It all factors into the overall price tag for hair extensions.

Cost of hair extension application in the salon (price of hair is not included)

-          Clip extensions - $100-$200

-          Sewn-in hair extensions - $100-$400 

-          Tape extensions - $200-$800

-          Fusion/ micro methods, which involve strand by strand application by the stylist - $1000-$2500

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