|An Oscar statue is seen at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences following the 85th Academy Awards nominee announcements in Beverly Hills, Jan. 10, 2013. REUTERS/Phil McCarten
Right now, Hollywood's best and brightest are preparing for the year's most important voyage down the red carpet. Oscar night — Feb. 24 — is almost upon us, and though you may be watching the action from your couch with your comfiest pyjamas and a bowl of popcorn, you may be inspired to glam up a bit yourself. After all, don't those stars make it look so easy?
Unfortunately, you don't have an entire team of pulling, prodding, painting stylists and experts getting you ready for that hot date. Fortunately, technology is on your side.
Want your clothes to look red-carpet ready? A good-quality garment steamer can help you get that just-dry-cleaned look at home, but most of us don't have the room for a huge pro-quality model (we are not living in mansions, after all). Rowenta's Pro Compact Steamer presents a balance between portability and performance. It heats up in a quick two and a half minutes and gets wrinkles out easily (but makes sharp creases if you need it to). Though it's compact as far as steamers go, it features a storage compartment containing a lint brush, fabric brush, upholstery brush, crease attachment and handy over-door hook to hold up your garment. When you're done, the hose wraps up and the steamer head locks in place for easy storage. It's $69.99 at Sears.
Every beauty pro has their arsenal of magic products they swear by — but plenty of those experts have extolled the powers of the Clarisonic skin brush. It's designed to scrub and lift impurities from your pores — the company claims it cleanses skin six times better than your hands alone. The effect is not only a cutdown on blemishes and breakouts, but those newly-cleansed pores will better absorb moisturizers, serums, lotions and potions. The three-speed Aria is the company's latest model, which comes with a USB-enabled charger and a charging stand. Brush up for $199 at Sephora.
It's been a few months since sandal season — what's the quickest, most elbow-grease-free way to get rid of stubborn calluses? The answer might be the Ansr Sole, a high-tech update to files and pumice stones. The easy-to-grip, rechargeable gadget contains a powerful motor, a polishing plate, and a container to collect the skin cells that get sloughed away. Just glide it over the problem spots, and five minutes later you'll be ready for flip-flops, even if the weather isn't. It's $125 at mywellcare.ca.
Fellas: If you're going for a clip-on bowtie anyway, you may as well choose one with a little extra function built in. Tiemension makes USB drives that cleverly masquerade as bowties and pocket squares. There are ties moulded to masquerade as fabric, and ties that flaunt their fakeness with a pixellated, almost LEGO block-like look. Each includes a 4 GB flash drive and an LED flashlight, giving new meaning to the term "flashy dresser". You'll feel like a secret agent stashing gadgets into your formalwear — what could be more dapper than that? Pick up an 002 Secret Agent bowtie for $25.95 US at tiemension.com.