Putting on the Glitz

If your holiday dress-up look is as predictable as fruitcake in December, it’s time to update your style, ladies.

Whether your mailbox is overflowing with engraved A-list party invitations or you have only one or two special events scribbled on your calendar, this is your season to shine.

Like many busy women, do you perennially aspire to whip-up a perfectly pulled-together holiday look, but somehow get sidetracked with cookie exchanges, shopping mall marathons, and holiday card mailings?

Start planning your glamour-girl transformation early. (Five minutes from now is not too soon.) Make beauty services appointments and keep them. Dates for hairstyling, highlights, manicures, facial treatments, and party-dress shopping are critical, so think twice before you cancel them.

Pamper your lustrous locks

If your hair is long enough, try a simple updo and accessorize your lobes with elegant dangling earrings. Freshen your highlights or add dimension to your color. “This holiday season, the focus will be on easy-to-style, gorgeous, yet effortless hair. You’ll see a lot of beautiful blowouts, soft waves, and clean simple updos—all with an emphasis on truly elegant style,” says Jack Panico, CEO and owner of Panico Salon & Spa in West Caldwell and other locations (973-364-9600; panico.com).

Go for a healthy glow
If you don’t always take time to thoroughly cleanse your skin at bedtime, get in the habit. Allow a thick night cream to penetrate your face for eight hours, and always cleanse and moisturize your face again in the morning, regardless of whether you apply makeup.

It’s not always easy, but try drinking the recommended eight glasses of water a day. Give it a good effort now, and watch your skin cells plump up by the holidays. Book a rejuvenating Power Peel or Thermal Italian Treatment with owner Caterina Castaldo at Bellezza Si Esthetica in Morristown (973-540-0764; bellezzasi.com), and your skin will thank you. A couple of hours at this spa, located within an historic mansion, is the next best thing to a Tuscan retreat.

Erase years from your fabulous face
At least two weeks before a special party, indulge in a Botox boost to banish crow’s feet, forehead wrinkles, and furrows between your brows. Deep laugh lines are no laughing matter, but it’s possible to make them disappear with new Juvederm Ultra Plus XC. This updated version of original Juvederm contains a lidocaine numbing agent meant to make injections more

One of the first area medical practices to introduce this filler was the Peer Group Skin Center in Florham Park (973-822-3000; peergroupnj.com). Dr. David Lange says, “Juvederm is an excellent choice for natural-looking rejuvenation that lasts at least six to nine months. And it’s safe because it comprises a sugar that naturally occurs in the body.”

Play with party makeup
It’s now or never. If you haven’t already mastered a smoky eye or lightly lined lip, seize the day. Try a pretty pale-berry lipstick shade and must-have super-shiny lip gloss. Invest in updated shadow hues such as charcoal, mocha, suede, and teal. Or schedule a makeover with a professional makeup artist such as Kimberly Bollo in Montville (973-727-8460); Pedro Sanchez in Montclair (973-746-8426); or Debbi Stewart in Chatham (973-890-5766).

Massage your cares away
If your idea of pampering yourself is grabbing a few sips of bubbly on the run, or spending fifteen minutes of uninterrupted luxury in the bathtub, it’s time to give yourself the gift of relaxation. European-born Claudia Georgescu, owner of Belmora Spa in Basking Ridge (908-696-0022; belmoraspa.com), has a client list that includes Madonna, Demi Moore, and Anita Baker. Experience rituals of touch including Swedish massage and reiki. Or try a decadent (and well-deserved) Papaya Body Polish.

Shape-up your nails
Don’t get caught under the mistletoe with ugly hands. If you polish your own nails, always use a base coat as well as a top coat. If you book a professional manicure, extend its life by keeping a bottle of clear topcoat next to your bed and applying one scant coat each night before you nod off.

Bare a little skin
It’s time to toss out that tried-and-true cocktail outfit you’ve worn season after season. Go with shorter, flirtier skirts with sequins or funky trim, or an updated pant with classic lines that flatter your legs and derriere. Dare to show off your pretty shoulders, neck, back, and décolletage. Make it a holiday to remember—for yourself and the deserving man in your life.

Put Your Best Face Forward

During the holidays or any time of year, these high-quality beauty-product favorites can help you look and feel your best:

Skincare system. Babor’s luxurious HSR system moisturizes, tones, and regenerates the skin. Skin Deep Day Spa, New Providence (908-508-1800; skindeepdayspa.com).

Anti-aging cream. La Prairie’s Anti-Aging Neck Cream is a cellular firming complex that refirms, reshapes, and renews. Bloomingdale’s, Bridgewater (908-762-2521) or laprairie.com.

Moisturizer. Swiss-made Phyto 5 Ceresal Day Cream is super-light, perfect to wear alone or under makeup. Belmora Spa, Basking Ridge (908-696-0022; belmoraspa.com).

Facial mask. Borghese’s Fango active mud mask nourishes skin cells, unclogs pores, and detoxifies impurities. Lord & Taylor, Bridgewater (908-707-9000; lordandtaylor.com).

Foundation. Ultra-light Debbi Stewart SPF Liquid Powder delivers smooth, natural coverage and SPF-15 protection (973-890-5766; debbistewart.com).

Lip color
. Estee Lauder’s new Pure Color Gloss delivers rich shades with a high-shine finish—just the thing for kissable holiday lips. Bloomingdale’s, Short Hills (bloomies.com).

Nail color. Revlon’s long-lasting, chip-resistant nail enamel comes in party-perfect hues like lilac pastelle, oh my magenta, gray suede, and plum night. Formulated to smooth away bubbles, streaks, and brush marks. Available at your favorite drugstore or revlon.com.

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