27 ways to look better naked
BORE YOUR PALATE
When people eat the same thing every day for breakfast (or lunch or dinner), they consume about 100 calories less within five days, according to a study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. May we suggest oatmeal or a protein shake for breakfast to streamline your morning routine—and your waistline?
SCRUB AWAY YOUR CELLULITE
Thirty minutes before you hop into your bikini, scrub cellulite vigorously with a washcloth, loofah, or brown-sugar exfoliator. "When you irritate the skin, you draw water into it, and that fills in those little crevices for a few hours," says dermatologist Amy Wechsler. The 100 percent viscose rayon exfoliating gloves used at Korean spas are especially effective. We like the towel versions from Songwol.
HAVE LUNCH INSIDE BUT COCKTAILS OUTSIDE
Need another reason to stay out of midday sun? Direct light eliminates definition and can make you look flat and washed out, says photographer Stacey Mark. Basically, we all look better in slight shadows. And if it's the hour before dusk—magic hour, as photographers call it—get outside in that golden light.
Next time you're on the elliptical and mindlessly watching TMZ, add a 30- second sprint for every one and a half minutes of your regular pace. "You can burn as many calories doing 30 minutes of sprints and rests as you can in an hour going at a steady pace," says Jacque Ratliff, an exercise physiologist for the American Council on Exercise.
GET SERIOUS ABOUT KETTLEBELLS
If you want to build core strength fast, grab those cannonballs with handles. In a University of Wisconsin study, two hour-long kettlebell workouts a week increased participants' core strength by 70 percent after eight weeks.
"The triceps are the biggest muscles in your arms, so they're the first thing that makes your arms look good," says Josh Newman, an owner and coach at CrossFit NYC. The best triceps toner? The humble push-up, with a tweak. "You'll get the most tricep activation if your elbows go straight back—not out—as you lower down," says Ratliff. If you feel sore just reading this, trainers say it's fine to modify. "I'd rather see you do full range of motion on your knees than a half range of motion on your toes," says David Kirsch, a trainer in New York City.
KILL ALL OVERHEAD LIGHTS
If you're indoors, nude-portrait photographer Brian Leighton suggests turning on just one floor or table lamp. "You want the light to come across your body at an angle," he says. "It creates shadows that enhance natural curves."
DON'T IGNORE YOUR BACK
A salicylic acid body wash is the best way to treat bacne, says dermatologist Ranella Hirsch. She suggests applying one with 2 percent salicylic acid (we like Neutrogena Body Clear Body Wash Pink Grapefruit) before you get in the shower, since it needs to be left on for a full ten minutes.
STOP WITH THE BRAZILIANS
"For 90 percent of women, the triangle is the most flattering shape," says Jodi Shays, owner of Queen Bee Salon and Spa in Brentwood, California. And keep it proportional: "In general, the wider your hips are, the wider the top line of the triangle should be," she says.
GET A NUDE PEDICURE
It has a subtle, but real, leg-elongating effect. Go for a nonshimmery nail polish that matches your skin tone or is a shade lighter. We like L'Oréal Paris Nail Color in Sweet Nothings for fair complexions, Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure in Mudslide for olive, and Hipp x RGB nail polish in F3 for dark skin.