Thursday, 30 October 2014

DARK UNDERARMS – Causes, Remedies & Prevention. Dark underarms is one of most common beauty problems faced by many women – it is a real turn down especially since it poses constraints on wearing sleeveless tops which ultimately results in being self-conscious when it comes to dressing. Dressing of course has a major influence on our confidence levels so we must not let anything restrict ourselves to pick and wear the attire of our choice.

Survey Revealed: How to Get Rid of Dark Under Arms

Dark UNderarms

Recently during my parlor visit for a regular waxing session this topic came for discussion since my friend badly wanted to get some solution to this problem. Thought of sharing with you all about the topic and further investigation of the problem. So here am trying to cite the major causes of dark underarms and remedies, preventive measures etc.

Major Causes:
Frequently wearing tight dresses, especially made of synthetic material, which are skin tight around the arm pit area (this will be worse if you’re overweight) which causes friction between skin and cloth and thus leads to dark underarms.
Hair removal by Shaving or Hair Removing creams: Shaving removes only those hairs which are above the skin surface and underarm area will appear dark since the hair follicles beneath skin are still visible in the form of black spots. Same is the case with hair removing creams and additionally certain chemicals in the cream might react and worsen the darkening effect. Neither shaving nor hair removing creams removes hair from its roots.
Negative reactions to Anti-Perspirants or deodorants: Alcohol and few chemical ingredients in these react badly on skin to cause darkening, especially anti-perspirants are supposed to be harsher than deodorants.
Dead Skin Bulid-up: As is the case with face and body, dead skin cells accumulate in under arm area and many times dirt and sweat accumulation makes things even worse and make it stubborn & thus difficult to remove.
Medical Conditions: Discoloration of underarm area can also be due to a medical condition called Acanthosis Nigricans, which is related to insulin production or some glandular disorder. If you have dark underarms and hyper-pigmentation around the base of your neck, please go get your blood sugar checked. These can be symptoms of type II diabetes and most people don’t know they have this. Intake of androgen-based contraceptives also contributes to darkening.
Apart from these, Genetics is also one factor and dark underarms may be passed on as heredity from past generations.

You can try a home made pack similar to what we use for face, with ingredients that have skin whitening properties- like a combination of lime+cucumber juice with a pinch of turmeric or besan+yogurt or sandalwood paste+rose water etc. Regular use will have positive effects but don’t expect an immediate solution.
Many commercial products are also available in market to lighten dark underarms but it is always advisable to go for something which is prescribed by your dermatologist which will generally have ingredients like salicylic acid, AHA, lactic acid, Retinol etc which are proven for their skin lightening properties.
If you suspect any medical condition contact your doctor and get it treated medically.
Once you find out what works well for you, and have shown positive results it is equally important to take some preventive measures to ensure your underarms stay clean n clear for ever.


Avoid tight fitting dresses, at least don’t wear them every day and choose cotton rather than synthetic material for daily use especially during summer when we sweat profusely…
Switch to waxing and stop shaving/using hair removing creams. You can really feel the difference in skin in terms of color, texture and growth of hair. Since waxing gets rid of hair from the roots the area stays clean and soft and hair grows back slowly without much thickness too.
Be conscious of the ingredients in deodorants, better to avoid anti-perspirants which have harsh chemicals and pick deos especially which are free of alcohol and strong fragrance. I personally feel it is always better to stick on to body spray/splashes rather than roll-ons since the application is more hygienic when it comes to spray. Avoid using all these while at home instead dust on some anti-fungal powder to absorb sweat if it is really required.
Regularly exfoliate your underarm area with a good body scrub, at least twice a week while you take shower-this will remove all dead cells, traces of deos, sweat and impurities. Make sure you moisturize the sensitive skin after exfoliation.
You may need to keep track of your weight too. Excess flabby arms lead to dark armpits due to rubbing skin against skin.
Now following are few things which have really helped me to prevent darkening of underarms.

I do regularly exfoliate with my favorite St.Ives apricot body scrub and am sure it works!!This is followed by applying a body moisturizer which will ensure the skin is not dried out.
St Ives Scrub for Underarms
St Ives Scrub for Underarms
I prefer waxing – really hate the way skin feels after shaving be it arms, legs or underarms which makes my skin dry so I never opt for shaving.
I always stick on to a mild deodorant – Dove is my personal favorite since it is quite moisturizing and has a mild fragrance-been using it for many years. Absolutely loving the new Dove deo with cucumber and green tea extract which has a refreshingly pleasant & mild fragrance and smell is quite long lasting too…I love to experiment with perfumes but not deodorants since it is being used in underarms where skin is quite sensitive.
In short just a little care is required to prevent darkening of underarms which would surely yield beautiful and long lasting results!!

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Wednesday, 29 October 2014

Pantene's Total Damage Care 10 Shampoo contains Keratin Damage Blockers, which identifies and neutralizes free radicals in water and this helps in preserving hair’s vital proteins.

Fun 'n Fitness Mondays: Tried and Tested: Pantene Total Damage Care 10 Shampoo

This aids in a healthy, tangle-free hair, giving up to 100% damage protection The shampoo comes in a white bottle with a golden flip open cap. If you have used Pantene shampoos earlier, you will know the exact fragrance of this one. The consistency of this shampoo is creamy; it lathers quite well. It works as a good moisturiser and cleans the scalp well. The shampoo is loaded with chemicals and that left my hair dry. I had to follow up every wash with the Total Damage Care Conditioner. I also ended up with terrible hair fall.
• Cleans the scalp well
• Removes oil, sweat and dust from the hair and scalp
• Lathers well
• Inexpensive
• Travel-friendly packaging

• It caused terrible hair fall
• Loaded with chemicals
• Causes product build-up over time

Price: Rs.152

Indian Institute of Management (IIM) Kozhikode and the Ministry of Human Resources Development are organising the Pan-IIM World Management Conference from November 5 –8. The theme of the conference, 'Globalizing Indian Thought' focuses on Indian management approaches like jugaad innovation that have found international recognition in recent times. The conference aims at bringing together global scholars to deliberate on issues that will impact global management thoughts in the years to come.

Management conference in Indian Institute of Management (IIM)

Short film competition
The U.S. Consulate General, Mumbai's is organising a short film competition on 'Women's Safety and Empowerment'. Participants must submit 3-5 minute videos in the form of stories, testimonials, ads, public service announcements, or any other format which depicts the safety or empowerment of women in some way. The contest is open to Indian nationals residing in the states of Chhattisgarh, Gujarat, Goa, Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra. The submitted videos must be original and produced within the past two years. For more details visit:

Animation awards
The Maya Academy of Advanced Cinematics (MAAC) is accepting entries for the 24 FPS Annual International Animation Awards 2014 to be held in Mumbai. The awards are spread across different categories including exclusive student awards for best VFX short film, game design, TV series, animated film etc. Students, professionals and studios from across the world can send their entries for the different categories. For more details:

Shopper marketing programme
MICA is conducting a three day management development programme on 'Shopper Marketing: Turning Shoppers into Buyers', from November 13-15 at its campus in Ahmedabad. The programme is aimed at professionals working at senior and middle level management positions, in the area of marketing, branding, advertising agencies or retail. Participants will understand the essentials of shopper marketing, complex decisions of shopper behaviour, trip and shopper types, shopping currencies and shopper marketing processes.

Business competition
Henkel has opened registrations for their eight Innovation Challenge. Students across the world from all disciplines can participate in this completion and are expected to submit ideas for sustainable products and technologies. A team of two students must indentify market trends and challenges in the Adhesive Technologies, Beauty Care or Laundry and Home Care sector. The winning team will receive an around-the-world ticket worth 10,000 Euros. The last date to submit ideas is December 10. For more details:

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Neil Harbisson, the world's first legally-recognised cyborg, talks to Roshni Nair about the untapped potential of cybernetics and the need to make technology more intrinsic

Meet Neil Harbisson: He hears colours with an antenna implanted in his skull and spins them into art


Neil-Harbisson-cyborg Alec Baldwin looks on as Harbisson wears a head-mounted apparatus to make a sound portrait of the actor in New York
The story of Neil Harbisson is one for the ages. Born with a rare vision disorder called achromatopsia, this British-born, Barcelona resident saw the world only in black and white.

That was until 2003, when he collaborated with Adam Montandon, Associate Professor of Innovation at Denmark's Erhvervsakademiet Lillebælt institute. Together, they created a revolutionary device called the 'eyeborg'. Fixed on the wearer's head, the eyeborg converts light waves (colour) into sound waves. This effectively gives one the ability to hear colour.

To say Harbisson's life changed thereafter would be a trivialisation. Once fully colour blind, Harbisson now perceived the world like no one could. "Art galleries became sound galleries," he says. "I was suddenly able to listen to a Picasso or a Rothko, and supermarkets became orchestras of sound."

A year later, in 2004, Harbisson became the only person in the world allowed to wear a head-mounted apparatus for his passport photo. This made him the world's first legally-recognised cyborg.

Today, this contemporary artist, who creates 'sound portraits­' of people, is a champion for cyborg rights. His Cyborg Foundation, established in 2010, is dedicated to creating awareness and promoting cybernetics as a way of life. In this interview, Harbisson talks about his vision for the future. Edited excerpts:

You've said that you were teased in school because of your disorder. Was achromatopsia something that always made you feel out of place?

Not really. I always thought it was good to be different. There's no problem seeing in black and white. It's just that colour is a very social and popular element, so I wanted to have a sense of it. Not necessarily change my sight.

Since colour is everywhere, weren't you bombarded by too much noise when you first wore the eyeborg?

Yes. When I first started hearing colour, it was too much information because it's all around us. My brain was being remapped, so I'd get headaches and feel really tired. It took around five weeks for me to get used to it. Other than that, I also had to get used to my new height, because the eyeborg antenna made me 7cm taller. So I'd bump into doors or branches (laughs).

You once said that Renaissance art 'disturbed' you as compared to modern art because the latter had 'less noise'...

I like abstract and minimalist art because you can hear the notes clearly. Traditional and classic paintings are more detailed, so you hear more notes, and that can become very chaotic. Simple paintings sound much better — you can concentrate on specific notes. Paintings by Mondrian, for example, have clear separation of colours. Paintings with complex shapes and shades are complex to listen to.

As a cyborg, do you have any dietary or lifestyle restrictions?
Electricity is part of my diet because apart from food and drink, I need to charge myself. I had to plug myself in a power source, but don't need to anymore. My eyeborg is now battery-powered, and it lasts for about 4-5 weeks.

But my ultimate aim is to draw energy from my own body instead of depending on an external source. Energy from blood vessels, our breath, and even brain energy. There's kinetic energy too.

Have you ever faced opposition for being a cyborg?
Oh yes. Some very religious people think our bodies shouldn't be modified. There are bioethicists who feel technology shouldn't be merged with humans. So doctors refuse to perform cyborg operations. It's extremely difficult to convince ethical committees about such procedures. Which is why the doctor who implanted the eyeborg on me remains anonymous. Many believe the union between humans and technology is unnatural, unhealthy or dangerous. That it will bring about a new kind of 'species' that will be dangerous to the world. This reminds me of the time people thought sex change operations shouldn't be performed. But this attitude is slowly changing.

Why do you think that bioethicists have a grouse with cybernetics when devices like pacemakers and microchips have saved lives?

The difference is that I can hear infrared (IR) and ultraviolet (UV) – colours the naked eye can't perceive. This goes beyond the realm of the normal and acceptable. Any implant that goes beyond traditional senses or perceptions is an issue for bioethical committees.
Also, having an antenna implanted means you're not replacing a body part – you're creating one. Some people believe humans aren't supposed to perceive UV and IR. Some believe we shouldn't have antennae. But I disagree. I think it's only natural to sense IR and UV because these are colours other animal species can perceive.
If anything, being a cyborg brings you closer to nature, not the other way around. Having a new sense changes your outlook, because you see the world in a new way. It's a new reality. The more senses you apply to your body, the more connected you feel to this planet.

There are concerns about cybernetics being used 'idly' instead of limiting it to rectifying a medical problem or disorder. Can you comment on that.

Anyone should be allowed to become a cyborg. We have the right to expand our perceptions of reality. I was never interested in seeing colour. I wanted to perceive it differently. In the same way I've decided to extend my senses, someone else too should be able to. There are people who are blind but have no interest in extending their sight. There are those who're deaf and not interested in hearing ever. I believe there are two groups of people: one that doesn't want to extend the senses, and one that does. We should be able to explore such an option.

Do you think people in developing countries can have access to affordable cybernetics in the near future?
Absolutely. Computers and mobile phones were exclusive at one time, but now they're accessible to everyone. The same will happen with cybernetics. Cybernetics will actually be cheaper, because technology will be merged with the body in some way. There's no external product. When you are a cyborg, you are technology. We've developed very affordable technologies, but the problem is that doctors aren't willing to implant them. It's more a social issue, not a monetary one.

Can you tell us more about these technologies?

We've worked on an infrared sensor called 360º Perception, which extends senses in all directions. This is to be attached to the back of the head. So you'll feel a vibration whenever there's movement behind you. There's also something akin to an inbuilt compass that vibrates when you face north. This provides a sense of orientation and is also very cheap.

Such technologies can save lives. Like in my case, perceiving UV rays helps me avoid radiation. Moon Ribas, who co-founded Cyborg Foundation with me, has the Seismic Sensor in her elbow that allows her to detect earthquakes. If you can pick up tremors anywhere on earth, you can alert people that very moment. Similarly, if you can sense what's behind you, you become more aware of your surroundings and can better protect yourself in a dangerous situation.
The possibilities of cybernetics are endless. You could have night vision instead of turning on the lights at night. That would save so much electricity. We could live in a world where artificial light is not necessary.

Does Cyborg Foundation get a lot of communique by people who want to become cyborgs?

Yes, thousands have contacted us. We try to reply to all of them, but it's not always possible. More and more people want to stop using external technology and start becoming technology. They want to apply the technology that machines have to their own bodies. It's strange that we give senses to cars and mobile phones, but we don't give these senses to ourselves.

Cyborg Foundation will continue promoting cyborgism as an art and social movement. We want to work with people who wish to express themselves in other ways, with the help of other senses. We will also push for the creation of clinics and hospitals that can perform cyborg operations. Places like New York, Mexico, Ecuador and Germany are more open to cyborgism than others.

But there are privacy and security concerns about having technology merged with your body...
All technology applied to the body can be private and closed circuit. You can choose whether or not to connect your senses to the internet or a company. In fact, I encourage people to create their own cybernetic extensions. The Cyborg Foundation's projects are open-source. So anyone can create their own antennae, Seismic Sense, or 360º Perception. Only you should have a hand in the creation of your sense, because at the end of the day, it's personal. It's not something you can buy.

So there's no question of cybernetics becoming commercialised since sense expansion will be custom-based?

Yes. People can create their own senses and body parts. There are 11-year-old children who create robots at home. When it comes to cybernetics, you just need to find a doctor who'll implant a device in your body. That's the difficult part.

What impact does being a cyborg have on your personal and social life?
Well there aren't many cyborgs in the world (laughs) so I do feel alone sometimes. If there were more cyborgs, we'd be able to share mutual thoughts and experiences. Being a cyborg at this juncture is quite isolating. It can be difficult to have a relationship with someone who doesn't think or feel the same way about technology as you do. Sometimes, there's a social gap between cyborgs and other people. Some people laugh when they see my antenna. But I'm used to it. I have been for 10 years., @savagespacetaco

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Bangalore City railway station has become the first in the country to have its own WiFi network for passengers.

Bangalore station gets country's first railway WiFi facility

The facility will be made available to passengers, on their mobile phones, free of charge for the first 30 minutes. After that, you can purchase more browsing time online through your credit card, or buy a scratch card at the WiFi help desk. These are priced at Rs 25 for 30 minutes and Rs 35 for one hour, and are valid for 24 hours.

RailWire, a broadband distribution model of RailTel Corporation of India, under the Railway Ministry, is facilitating the bandwith for the station's WiFi. RailTel will soon provide Wi-Fi facilities at other A1 & A category stations as well. Connaught Place in Delhi, Dadar and CST in Mumbai, and Thane stations are reportedly on the roadmap, but no confirmation as to which station which get the upgrade next.

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A huge achievement for Snapdeal, India's four-year-old startup that allows third party retailers to sell goods online, comes in the form of a $627 million investment from SoftBank Internet and Media. The investment yesterday came at the same time that SoftBank confirmed a $210 million investment in another local startup Olacabs

Snapdeal snaps up $627 million investment from Japanese giant

The Japanese company's investment is Snapdeal's cue to continue expanding within the country, riding on what is likely the biggest cash dump by a single investor into an Indian startup. The latest cheque brings Snapdeal's fundraising this year upto a total of almost $1 billion, putting it into an easier spot to compete with rivals Amazon and Flipkart.

For SoftBank, the investment comes as part of what the company's chief executive, Masayoshi Son, says is a plan to invest $10 billion in India's e-commerce sector over the next 10 years. Meanwhile Kunal Bahl, cofounder of Snapdeal, says he hopes to take the company's future in the same direction as Alibaba, a China-based e-commerce giant in which SoftBank owns a third of the shares.

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Real Madrid star forward Cristiano Ronaldo has beaten Barcelona's Lionel Messi for the first time to clinch La Liga's best player award among a hattrick of awards he won at the Spanish top flight's annual gala.

Cristiano Ronaldo beats Lionel Messi for first time to bag La Liga's best player award

The Portuguese also won prizes for the league's best striker and best goal, for his back-heel against Valencia.

Ronaldo said that it is a very good moment in his career, and later tweeted that he was happy and proud, The BBC reported. The accolade comes as Ronaldo was also named on the shortlist for the 2014 Ballon d'Or, the award given to the world's best player.

Argentina forward Messi, who also figures on the Ballon d'Or shortlist, had won all five previous La Liga best player awards since the prize was launched in the 2008-09 season.

Ronaldo finished top scorer in La Liga in 2013-14 with 31 goals, but was unable to fire Real Madrid to the title, with city rivals Atletico winning the league.

However, Real dominated the individual awards at the La Liga gala, with Sergio Ramos being named best defender and Luka Modric winning the prize for best defensive midfielder, the report added.

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Wednesday, 22 October 2014

New Delhi(Indilens Web Team): Diwali is one of the biggest festival of Hindus, celebrated with great enthusiasm and happiness in India. The festival is celebrated for five continuous days, where the third days is celebrated as the main Diwali festival or 'Festival of lights'.

Traditional Diwali Celebration in India and PM Modi's Wishes

Different colorful varieties of fireworks are always associated with this festival. On this auspicious day, people light up diyas and candles all around their house. They perform Laxmi Puja in the evening and seek divine blessings of Goddess of Wealth. The festival od Diwali is never complete without exchange of gifts. People present diwali gifts to all near and dear ones.

The exact day of the festival is decided by the position of the moon. According to the Hindu calendar, Amavasya or 'no moon day' is considered as the perfect day to celebrate Diwali. This dark night comes after every fortnight and in the month of Kartik, it marks this festival of lights and diyas. As per the English calendar, the festival generally comes in the month of November and December. For all Hindu people, the festival holds an imperative meaning since the festival is reckoned with Lord Rama's victory as the King of Ayodhya after his return to the kingdom from 14 years of exile along with his wife Sita & brother Laxman after killing the demon, King Ravana. The festival is celebrated by lighting diyas and candles to drive away the darkness of Amavasya.

Diwali Festival in India

Assam, Bihar, Delhi, Jammu and Kashmir, Punjab, Orissa, Rajasthan, Himachal Pradesh, Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh, Gujarat, Andhra Pradesh, Goa, West Bengal, Tamil Nadu, Madhya Pradesh, Kerala, Karnataka

Diwali Celebrations around the World

Mauritius, Nepal, Malaysia, Indonesia, Myanmar, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Japan, Thailand, South Africa, Kenya & Tanzania, Britain, Australia, Trinidad & Tobago , Guyana, Surinam, Fiji

Prime Minister Narendra Modi Wednesday took to Twitter to share the link of a special page for exchanging Diwali wishes with people.

"Many friends are sending Diwali wishes. My thanks to them. Do visit this specially created page," he tweeted. @narendramodi

"Many friends are sending Diwali wishes. My thanks to them. Do visit this specially created page"

In another tweet, the prime minister said people could send their special e-greetings on Diwali online.

"Diwali is here! Send these special e-greetings and share the happiness and brightness of this festive season," he tweeted.

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Thursday, 9 October 2014

If there is one actress who singularly embodies Bollywood’s charisma, enigma, glamour and giddy stardom, it is Rekha.

Ever so sparkling, stunning and sophisticated, the actress didn’t start out on an impressive note. Far from it, she was ridiculed for her chubby, gawky demeanour even though her debutSaawan Bhadon was a box office success.

The teenager took the criticism in her stride and began to work on her appearance and style till the camera turned weak in its knees and audiences were mesmerized beyond doubt.

Rekha’s presence on the silver screen was no longer just beautiful. It was its soul. It was its poetry.

Where most would be content achieving just that, the ambitious actress further experimented with her make-up and hair through edgy, kitschy looks that declined to play safe and challenged the boundaries of fashion.

The gorgeous Rekha turns 60 today. We celebrate this milestone in a compilation of her MOST GLAMOROUS avatars in the movies.

Super Nani

Rekha in Super Nani


In her upcoming release, Rekha plays a neglected grandmother who decides to teach her husband a lesson by taking up modelling on her grandson’s behest. This gives her ample opportunity to flaunt her ageless glitz on screen.

Bachke Rehna Re Baba

Rekha in Bachke Rehna Re Baba


A lousy rehash of Hollywood’s Heartbreakers, Bachke Rehna Re Baba is best remembered for Mallika Sherawat’s innumerable bikini-clad appearances and knockout Rekha’s diva tactics.


Rekha in Parineeta


With her signature red lips and seductive aura, Rekha fills the frames with magnetic vintage vibe in her alluring ‘special appearance’ for the Parineeta melody, Kaise Paheli Zindagani.

Khiladiyon Ka Khiladi

Rekha in Khiladiyon Ka Khiladi


Blonde wigs, stylish sunglasses, gloves and ruby red lips distract us from the mostly vampy, hard-hearted persona of Rekha’s underworld queen in Khiladiyon Ka Khiladi.

Also remembered for her smouldering make-out session with the much junior colleague Akshay Kumar.

Madam X

Rekha in Madam X


If you’re going to play an over-the-top baddie, style yourself like an over-the-top baddie seems to be Rekha’s mantra as she parades a wardrobe of costume-y numbers and sequined turbans to play the vile Madam X.

It’s outrageous, yes. But Madam Re totally works it.

Khoon Bhari Maang

Rekha in Khoon Bhari Maang


Taking up modeling seems to be Rekha’s preferred mode of revenge. Seeing how much glamour she gets to bring on screen doing that in Khoon Bhari Maang, who can argue?


Rekha in Utsav


Proving she’d be a style icon no matter what age we lived in, Rekha embellishes her courtesan Vasantsena with enough bling and blaze to look anywhere else on screen in Shashi Kapoor’s critically acclaimed Utsav.


Rekha in Janbaaz


It’s only a song appearance. But, boy oh boy, Rekha brings the house down with style, sensuality and sequins that’s only befitting for a Feroz Khan production.


Rekha in Silsila













Like a true Yash Chopra heroine, Rekha is a picture of exquisite grace and feminity as the classy muse in her kajal-lined eyes, loose tresses, scarlet red lips and pristine white churidars.

Umrao Jaan

Rekha in Umrao Jaan


She’s played a courtesan in many films but none hold a candle to her Umrao Jaan’s adas.

Even the shiniest of pearls and diamonds she adorns cannot outshine the radiance and romance emanating from her big, soulful eyes.

Saajan Ki Saheli

Rekha in Saajan Ki Saheli


Rekha breaks the monotony of the soap opera-like narrative of Saajan Ki Saheli with her chic appearances as Nutan’s point-proving daughter.


Rekha in Nagin


Part of Reena Roy’s vendetta spree includes taking the form of different human beings to advance her harsh scheme.

In one such scenario, she transforms into tantalising Rekha wearing a slinky black gown that showcases the famously curvaceous beauty to enticing effect in target Sunil Dutt’s eyes.


Rekha in Hawas


Even in her early films, Rekha showed off her glamorous essence in a rather bold manner with a pot-smoking, cabaret for Neetu Singh-starrer Hawas.

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One day your teenage girl comes home after school and makes a grand statement: “I want a cell phone”. You are left surprised as your quiet-natured girl has never raised such a demand before. You neglect that demand thinking that it was just a momentary outburst of her whim. But she repeats her demand the next day and the day after. She even lists a number of reasons why she needs a cell phone, all of which sound extremely unconvincing to you. She declares a hunger strike until her wish is granted. After repeated sessions of talking, cajoling and coaxing, she reveals the reason:

Teenage Peer Pressure Survey report from the Babyoye

All her friends have got cell phones and she feels embarrassed not to have one. Do you know what we are talking about here? Yes, teenage peer pressure.

What is peer pressure?

Simply put, peer pressure is the influence your teenager’s social group has on her, making her choose or do things which she wouldn’t have done otherwise. She succumbs to that pressure hoping that she will be accepted in that group and valued by its members. Peer pressure is not an exclusively teenage phenomenon. We experience it at different stages and different fields of our social life, be it in college, office, family or neighborhood. But teenage peer pressure is difficult to handle as there is a risk of your teen choosing or doing something without weighing its pros and cons.

What are the different forms of peer pressure?

Most parents identify peer pressure only when their children explicitly demand something, such as a cell phone, new gadget, video game or dress. But it can be manifested in different forms which you, as a parent, may leave unnoticed. Your teen kids may be undergoing peer pressure if they:

  • Choose to wear the same kind of clothes, jewellery or hairdos as their friends
  • Watch certain TV programs or listen to certain types of music which you haven’t seen them enjoying hitherto
  • Start using words which were alien to their vocabulary
  • Start breaking rules and doing things which you never thought they were capable of doing
  • Start working harder and spend the night studying
  • Start taking their studies less seriously
  • Develop new habits (such as smoking or drinking) and change their interests overnight
  • Start developing new hobbies and activities

Is peer pressure a bad thing?

No, there is positive and negative peer pressure. For example, your teen can be influenced by her friends to try out new hobbies, work harder at studies, become more social and outgoing, and develop new skills. But teens can also get influenced to try out not-so-desirable things which they normally wouldn’t have done otherwise. Some influences, even though they are harmless, might implicate that you spend money to buy stuff that is not really necessary.

How to help your teenager deal with negative peer pressure?

As a parent you should learn to identify which influences are positive and which are negative in order to help your teen deal with peer pressure. You may feel anxious about the new interests your child is developing simply because they are new. You have a good reason to worry whether she is compromising on her values and views. Always remember one thing: A teenager with strong values and a good sense of self-awareness will be able to resist negative peer pressure better. Building self-esteem and confidence in your child will help her enforce her own personality and opinions when she is faced with negative influences.

What to do when you are worried about your child’s peer group?

You start getting sleepless nights when your teen hangs out with a peer group that influences her negatively. You might be tempted to openly criticize the behavior of her friends. Withhold that impulse, however strong it might be. She is not going to like it if you criticize her friends using harsh words. She may even continue those friendships secretly even if your say no to them. Instead of focusing on particular friends, start focusing on generic behavior you disapprove. For example do not say “I don’t like your friend Anita because she doesn’t respect elders”. Instead talk to your child about the importance of showing respect to elders when we live in a society. Make your child see the potential dangers and consequences of such negative behaviors.

How much should you compromise?

Setting boundaries is necessary, but that doesn’t mean you should say no every time your teen acts on peer pressure. You may not be a great fan of sleeveless tops and slogan printed T-shirts. But letting your child wear clothes of her choice will help her connect with her friends. If you think compromising on a particular behavior of your teen is completely harmless, do it. Exercise your wisdom to arrive at a decision on what is negotiable and what is not.

When should you take external help?

Most behavioral problems related to peer pressure can easily be managed. If you notice major behavioral changes in your child and if you suspect that they are due to peer pressure, it is time you have an open conversation with her. Mood swings and behavioral changes are common in teenagers and they outgrow such changes quickly. However certain changes need to be handled with more care and seriousness. For example, if your teen develops tearfulness, hopelessness, aggression, anti-social behavior, lack of sleep, lack of appetite, reluctance to go to school, total withdrawal from her favorite activities etc., you may need help from an expert. Talk to a counselor or your family doctor if you notice major behavioral disorders in your teen.

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Thursday, 2 October 2014

Mumbai: On the auspicious day of Ashtami, Bengali women offer prayers to Maa Durga and dress up to the hilt to celebrate the ongoing Durga Puja. The traditional attire which includes a stunning saree with heavy eye make-up, a big bindi and ornaments, is the norm for this day. Bengali or not, if you too wish to enjoy the festivitives of Durga Puja, here are tips to get your look right.

Make and Beauty world fantasy on the Durga Puja Celebration

sushmita-sen durga puja make-up

For the day puja or one at home, it’s best to keep the look rather subtle. To stick to a simple and not-so-glam make-up, professional make-up and hairstylist Swati Dedhia explains, ‘Ensure your face is well-moisturised and clean, because it’s more about the natural look here. You could brush on some loose powder and highlight your cheek bones with a sheer blush for that radiant glow.
‘Since it is the day, the eye make-up shouldn’t be too dark or bright. For this, you can simply use the the sheer blush and apply it lightly for a thin coat of shimmer as an eyeshadow. Then, use the eyeliner or kajal pencil to shape your eyes well. Use a red lip colour or a shade of nude on the lips.’

If you are attending a Durga Puja in the evening, then your make-up and hair are bound to be heavy. As for heavy traditional make-up, your eyes have to be given the most attention. Swati suggests, ‘You could use warm shades of eyeshadows with gold, copper, bronze, for a heavy look. However, the most important thing is to shape your eyes well with kajal or eyeliner on the eyelids.The best way to make your eyes look bigger is by extending the tip while applying the eyeliner from the corner of your eye. This defines your eyes better and looks great for a traditional look. You cold use the classic red lipstick or try on a plum red.’


‘You should be particular about the way your hair looks for this festive occasion. To be hassle-free and simple, just pin your hair into a neat bun and wear a fresh gajra. You could choose to leave out a few strands of hair near your face and curl them. Or simply puff and back comb the front of your hair and pin it tightly,’ says Swati.
If you want to try out something other than a basic hair bun, then opt for a messy bun that looks modern and will blend in well making a good combination with the rest of the ethnic look. Swati suggests, ‘Another style you can try out is with a bun behind but with a twist in the front section of the hair. You could braid your hair from one ear to another into a regular plate or a French braid. For this, begin with side parting your hair and braid the hair from either sides, and move to the other. Then take the rest of the hair and tie it into a neat bun. Secure the bun section with pins.’

Traditional attire

Your look is going to be a miss if you don’t pick a cotton, silk or the traditional tant saree. You could stick to the classic red and white colours but if you are in a mood to experiment then look for borders in bright colours like pink, yellow, green or orange.
There is nothing like it if you can manage wearing the traditional red and white Bengali saree with puffed sleeves. Or traditional silk borders against basic or neutral colours would look elegant as well. Ensure your saree is well-ironed as a creased one will only look shabby and spoil the appearance of your attire. You could also wear a printed ethnic blouse or opt for bold dark colours in contrasting colour of your saree.

To keep the ethnic look in tact, don’t forget to wear a big bindi. A basic maroon or red one will do the trick. Wearing a bindi also helps draw attention to your eyes. For a more grand look, you could wear a maang tika, one with a single band or a tri-band covering the sides of your head. Many married women also wear sindoor in addition to the bindi to add an ethnic touch.

Wednesday, 1 October 2014

Palak Shah, Bollywoodshaadi: A ‘May-December' romance usually takes most of us by an element of surprise. It talks about a relationship in which one partner is in the winter of his life, while the other is in the youthful spring. In simpler terms, it talks about the relationship with unsual age inequality among the couple. We are accustomed to see a young woman falling for an older man. However, when the reverse equation of a younger man and older woman comes in front of us, we raise our eyebrows.

5 Reasons Why Men Fall in Love With Older Women

But if Bollywood statistics are anything to go by, then a cougar relationship- wherein the man is younger than the woman- is not only successful, but is also sustainable. From the likes of Farhan Akhtar to Abhishek Bachchan, many Bollywood stars have found their love in older women. So, let us explore the reasons that make men allured towards older women.

#1. Respectful and responsible

A prominent psychiatrist, Sanjay Chugh feels that, “Just as a woman would look for a father figure or fulfil her needs for protection in an older man, a man would look for a mother figure or fulfil his needs for tender care and love in an older woman.”

Thus an older woman will be nurturing as well as be an epicentre of strength in the times of difficulties. As she has more experiences of life than her partner, her right guidance in tough situations will make him feel more confident.

#2. Gratifying intimacy

As per various studies, it is found that women reach their sexual peak quite later in life as compared to men. In addition, they still look young and hot at that age. On the other hand, older women find young men energetic and more dynamic. This results in an extraordinarily fulfilling physical intimacy. And, this is also a reason most men fall for older women.

Farah Khan and Shirish Kunder (left) have an age difference of eight years, Farhan Akhtar and Adhuna Babhani (bottom-right) have the difference of six years, whereas Archana and Parmeet (top-right) have the difference of seven years. But, this age disparity never seemed to have affetced their relationships.

#3. Women age gracefully

It is true that everyone gets better with age and so does women. According to Atul Verma, a clinical psychologist, “Younger people usually are drawn to older people because they are more mature- and more successful.” As a woman gains experience in life, she becomes more contented. This also inculcates in her a certain degree of financial and emotional stability. This is perhaps the most important factor why a man gets attracted to her.

#4. Strike a better chord

The most striking aspect of any relationship is the communication between the partners. An older woman, who indulges in intelligent conversations, can make a young man go head over heels. This aptly explains, why a happy-go-lucky Ranbir Kapoor gets charmed by much older and ambitious Konkana Sen Sharma in the movie Wake Up Sid. An older woman can not only connect well with her man, but she can also be the one who is more caring, compromising and understanding for her partner.

#5. Age is just a number

In today’s world it is impossible to determine someone’s age. Those whom you may think are in their late thirties, might actually be forty plus. Also, you never ask someone’s age before falling in love, right? Hence, the relationships wherein women are older than their partners, are as justified as the reverse ones.

The power couple of Bollywood- Abhishek Bachchan (left) is two years younger than Aishwarya Rai; Another couple- Shilpa Shetty and Raj Kundra (right) have the age difference of three months

Life coach Malti Bhojwani, comments on this newly found trend by saying, "What I have noticed is that women in their 30s are breaking away from set society norms and are going out with men who are younger than them." With so many examples already set by the Bollywood couples, we can easily state that love has nothing to do with the age. 

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