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Turn over a new leaf in 2010

• Go through all those half-full bottles and jars of hand and body lotions and potions, shampoos, sprays and creams in the medicine cabinet, under the sink, on your dressing table. Get rid of those you don't like or don't use.

New leaf: Use up what you do like before you go out and buy something new.

• When was the last time you had a dental checkup, a physical, a going-over by a dermatologist, a well-woman checkup?

New leaf: Get on the phone and book those appointments.

• How old is your makeup? Aging cosmetics can breed bacteria and fail to perform properly. If something is clumping or thick, smells odd or is separating into layers, it's time to get rid of it. Replace mascara and liquid eyeliner every three months; liquid foundation, every 12 months; powders, every two years.

New leaf: Throw out what's aging; replace items you need, and jot the purchase date on new items so you know when they expire.

• Check the first-aid supplies around the house. Your basic kit needs pain relief, antacid, antiseptic wipes, antibacterial ointment, calamine or other anti-itch lotion, cold remedy, plastic bandages, disposable gloves, hand sanitizer.

New leaf: Head to the drugstore and restock.

• How long has it been since you tried a new hairstyle? Are you still carrying around that 1960s folksinger look, a 1970s Farrah 'do, or the big-hair style of the 1980s?

New leaf: Get thee to a salon and try a new cut and style, preferably one that's low-maintenance and chic.

• If you're not one for major lifestyle changes, don't set yourself up for failure with big goals you can't achieve. Start small.

New leaf: Take the stairs instead of the elevator, sip water instead of a soda, walk around the block once a day. When those start to feel normal, take on more.

• Dental experts say you need a new toothbrush every three months as bristles start to break down and no longer clean as well. Replace your brush after a bout with the cold or flu, too, as bristles can harbor germs that reinfect you.

New leaf: Buy a handful, mark the calendar, and start every quarter with a new brush.

• You know you should eat more veggies. Instead of making it an obligation, try new recipes that could actually get you and yours excited about broccoli, beans and other good-for-you staples.

New leaf: Check out Web sites such as epicurious.com that let you search recipes by ingredients. Clip ideas from the Times' Taste section. Subscribe to Cooking Light magazine. Or peruse the stacks at the library or bookstore.

• Watch the listings in Personal Best for charity walks and fun runs; sign up and go. You don't have to finish first; you just have to finish, at your own pace.

New leaf: Make this the year you walk the walk.

• It's closet cleanout time. Get rid of the clothes that don't fit or that you haven't worn in ages. Too-big clothes give you permission to overeat and skip exercise, since there's still something to wear. Too-small clothes are just depressing.

New leaf: Face reality and trim the closet down to what fits and what you enjoy wearing.

• Try a healthy indulgence. If it has been a while since you hit the nail salon, have a pedicure to inspire good foot care as well as a stylish look. Never had a facial, or an eyebrow wax job? Give it a try.

New leaf: Take care of yourself; looking good and feeling good go hand in hand.

Turn over a new leaf in 2010 01/01/10 [Last modified: Friday, January 1, 2010 3:30am]

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