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I was raised in a temperate, rainy part of the world and so I love New York’s long, hot summers (even on humid days). Summer means bare legs and they emerge pale and dry from a long winter of enclosure and in need of plenty of TLC. Although my legs are more those of a corgi than Angelina Joli, they still respond to the right treatments, from shaving to creams and even ultrasonic!
I have started to take exfoliation seriously and make sure that before and during shower, my legs (and especially knees) get thoroughly sloughed. I use the Clarisonic Plus’ large head for dry brushing (the much less expensive Sirius Sonic also works well). A little glycolic works wonders as well. I have taken to using Lather’s 10-minute Brightening Mask on my knees and places on my shins were the skin looks a little dry and crepey. Lather’s generous 4oz pot ($28 in the TIA shop) goes a long way and a regular smear really helps smooth and brighten the skin.
For body moisturizers, it depends on the weather. My default is Juice Beauty, which is very hydrating, leaves my skin feeling silky and firmer. Along with the exfoliating, I feel that it is keeping crepey wrinkles at bay. Plus it is very good value ($18 in the TIA shop). If it is a very hot and humid day, then I reach for Skin-Lasting Hydrating Moisturizer ($29). This unusual lotion is a light spray that is perfect for sweat-inducing weather. As well as moisturizing with glycerin it also exfoliates with lactic acid.
I read somewhere of a study on ultrasonic that was conducted on elbows and reported less wrinkling and tighter skin. My mind immediately went to Ultra Renew and knees. I have been conducting a small experiment for the last six weeks, using Ultra Renew ($89 in the TIA shop) in ultrasonic mode on my right knee (the left being the control). It took more than a month, but I now think that it is a little firmer – I definitely feel inspired to continue (the alternatives being saving up for a knee-lift a la Demi Moore, or the inexorable slide to Melanie Griffiths knees).
My other find for legs is shaving with Eco Amour. I’ve never come across a shaving foam that I actually looked forward to using before. Eco Amour Shaving Cream ($24 in the TIA shop) is truly an exception to shaving rules: it is a light, ethereal foam, super kind to the skin (it works really well for the bikini area) and leaves my legs feeling pampered and soft.
The most life-changing (not just leg enhancing) discovery has been The Bar Method. This exercise program has lifted my butt and given definition to my naturally chubby thighs. The longer leaner muscle that these exercises induce are – to this corgi – nothing short of a miracle. They also blast cellulite. Although I do get a little help on this front from Nutra-Lift’s Daily Seaweed Cellulite Cream ($24 in the TIA shop).