Things that make you go ‘hmmm’
I’m always excited to find a new fashion fix, beauty breakthrough or smart solution to everyday life. But there’s one “believe it or not” category in which some things — whether weird, wacky or oddly clever — cause me stop and go “hmmm.” From potions that promise to help you smell richer and younger to gum that claims to help your “girlfriends” out. I just couldn’t resist sharing this roundup.
If you have ever had a million-dollar idea that you just can’t believe hasn’t been thought of before, you might want to visit Instructables.com to be sure. I was certain I’d seen it all until I stumbled across their Clap-Off Bra — a bra that literally falls off when you clap twice. Of course, the DIY-er in me was instantly drawn to many of their inventive ideas, including a Bluetooth Glove with the device built directly into the fabric, and their LED leggings that light up while you’re strutting your stuff. Search the site for inspiration or follow their how-to instructions to make your own ingenious product.
Nowadays, it’s not only what you do, but what you wear that can help you get in shape. Similar to the toning sandals and sneakers that have become so popular, these cute and comfy Slimming Slippers, when worn daily, are said to gradually firm and tone your legs. Just wear around the house for at least 15 minutes, three times a day, and their unique shape is said to help you work more muscles, whether walking or standing, resulting in more calories burned. An added bonus: The one-size-fits-all design is also perfect for maintaining your pedicure. ($8.94; Amazon.com) And if you never imagined the day would come when your clothes could help you get more out of your workout, guess again. The recently launched Easy Tone apparel line by Reebok is the brand’s first line of clothing designed to help tone muscles and improve posture while you wear. Using Reebok’s ResisTone™ bands to create resistance when you move, the pieces combine function with style, and are available in long bra, short-sleeve and sleeveless tops, full pants, capri pants and shorts. ($55-$80; Reebok.com)
Last but not least — plastic surgeons beware. There is now a nonsurgical nose-job alternative that allows you to alter the shape of your nose on your own, at home. “No” kidding, NoseSecret consists of a pair of curved, comfortable splints that you place at the inside edge of each nostril to slim, refine, lift or straighten your nose. With three different-size kits to accommodate all nose shapes, the tool aims to create facial harmony when worn by refining the appearance of the nose. ($34.95; NoseSecret.com)
Far East finds
Our friends to the East seem to have endless ideas when it comes to advances in health and beauty gadgets, so I found no lack of interesting items when searching popular Japanese websites. Good ol' chewing gum (whose only job used to be blowing bubbles) has recently taken on whole new meanings, with everything from versions that taste like meatballs to those that will keep you awake. Now there is even an option that claims to enhance the size of your “girlfriends.” Formerly known as “Bust Up Gum,” the Japanese Body Balance Tuning Gum contains Suplitol Pueraria, which is a plant best known for its uses in alternative breast enlargement treatment and is also rumored to help reduce stress, improve circulation and lessen PMS symptoms. ($34.95; GetBustUpGum.com) And for the fellas, “Otoko Kaoru” — meaning “man smell” — is a type of Japanese gum that, when chewed, is absorbed by your body and released through your pores, keeping you smelling like a rose all day long. ($3.25; MelandRose.com) Using this same technology, the company recently launched their Otoko Kaoru men’s shirt to help keep guys smelling fresh. The shirts feature tiny capsules built into the collar that, when gently rubbed, release a subtle scent of menthol and roses. Great for any businessman concerned with unwanted odor, the capsules will continue to work for up to 10 washes.
Last but not least, JapanTrendShop.com may be the mecca for all things unique. Sick of breathing into your hand to check your breath? They offer an actual breath checker that will do the job for you, and give you a 0-6 rating so you know if you need to pop a mint. If you have ever heard yourself in an audio recording only to be surprised that the voice you hear in your head is nothing at all like the one that comes out of your mouth, their Beauty Voice Trainer may be of interest to you. In just 5 minutes a day, the device is said to help train your throat, to help with abdominal breathing and to teach your ear to match the pitches of the included tuning fork. Finally, if you are looking for an alternative to creams in order to stay wrinkle free, their Mejikara Anti-Wrinkle glasses have specially designed ridges that apply gentle pressure to the skin around your eyes to help lift and smooth. When worn for 5 minutes a day, the glasses are said to improve the appearance of your face.
There is nothing like the sweet smell of success, and now you can literally have it all day, every day. While many fragrances out there borrow notes from flowers or fruits, Liquid Money perfume was inspired by the scent of cold, hard cash. The creator was motivated by a study that showed an increase in worker productivity when the smell of money was pumped throughout an office. With this in mind, he created Money Cologne (for him) and Money Eau de Parfum (for her) so no matter what your actual economic situation, you can at least smell like a baller. And speaking of ambitious aromas, the folks over at Harveyprince.com have really put some thought into the psychology of smell with their “smart scents.” Their popular Ageless perfume was developed based on studies showing that women can smell younger than their actual age. Comprised of a proprietary combination of fragrances, including pink grapefruit, mango, pineapple, leafy greens, pomegranate, jasmine and musk, the blend is said to help women appear up to eight to 12 years younger. The company is also coming out with a new fragrance this month, Eau De Lite, designed to curb your appetite and help you lose weight. Now if only there was a scent that made you feel like your house was always clean and the bills were always paid, we’d truly have it all.