Category Archives: Tips

DIY Tips for Using Caulk

If a bad caulk job bothers you, with these tips you can learn to run a smooth bead of caulk. With advice from some pros you’ll soon be caulking all your DIY projects like a pro.

“How do you get such a smooth bead of caulk?” This is a question I hear often. For me it seems almost second nature and I usually reply that it takes practice. But after talking with some pros that spend a lot of time caulking, a few techniques will cut your practice time. You can get good results right away.

Cut the caulk tube with care.

This is where your caulk job begins and can be doomed from the beginning. Cut the tip of the caulk tube with a utility knife at about a 45-degree angle. Keep your cut near the end to make a 1/8-in. diameter opening. Smoothing the tip with 100-grit sandpaper, this will give you a smoother finish caulk job.

The biggest mistake you could make is to cut too much off of the tip of the caulk tube. You want the hole in your tube to be about two-thirds the width of the desired caulk joint. Most caulking jobs should only require a narrow bead. If you’re caulking molding to prepare it for paint, start with the opening very small, just over 1/16 in. diameter. To caulk your tub, a 1/8-in. diameter hole is usually about right. Some caulk tubes need to be punched in order to start the flow of caulk. Use a thin wire like a scrap electrical wire or coat hanger to avoid enlarging the hole at the tip.

To apply a smooth bead of caulk that’s just the right size, you have to find the balance between squeezing the handle and application speed. The trick is to keep squeezing constant and vary the speed according to the size of the joint. Keep the caulk gun moving at the same angle and fill the joint as you go, don’t worry if you leave a gap. You can fill this gap in the second pass, this is better than to clean up excess caulk from going too slow.

When you get to the end, release pressure and quickly lift the tip from the surface. Clean the tip before you start a new bead.

Smooth the bead with a wet finger tip using light pressure. Wipe the excess caulk off your finger tip with a damp cloth.

Smoothing not only makes the caulk look good-it ensures good adhesion on each side of the gap. The tip of your finger is all you need, no special tools required. Wet your finger with water for latex caulk.

Silicone caulk requires a little more effort, wear a tight-fitting latex or vinyl glove and wet the fingertip with denatured alcohol. Take care to keep your beads of silicone and urethane caulk slim to make smoothing easier. If you get much excess, they’re hard to clean up and can get really messy. Use paper towels, so you can use a new piece every time you wipe off your finger.

These tips should make your DIY projects easier when caulking is required to finish the project.

8 Effective Tips For Shinier Hair

No one should be surprised by the fact that one of the biggest complaints women have concerning hair care focuses on the lack of shinier hair. When one considers the massive amount of time that we spend engaged in washing, coloring, drying and styling our hair even over a year, never mind considering a lifetime, it is amazing that we have any hair at all. Our hair endures more strain and stress than perhaps any other part of the body.

Thankfully there are a number of things that we can do to have shinier hair and also look healthier at the same time. So if you really do want to sport shinier hair that is the envy of all your friends, then the “8 Effective Tips For Shinier Hair” that follow will help you attain this goal.

Tip 1: Avoid Using Brushes Or Elastic Bands

Many females have a tendency to pull their wet hair into a ponytail when it is wet. This is very hard on your hair since when wet, hair has a much greater ability to stretch than when dry. By stretching the damp hair into a ponytail it is prevented from normally contracting as it dries which may lead to follicle damage. Brushing wet hair may lead to a similar situation, although not as serious. Tugging on the wet hair causes it to stretch beyond normal limits and many lead to damage when it contracts as it dries. In fact most stylists recommend using a comb on wet hair, never a brush if you want shinier looking hair.

Tip 2: Dangers Of Alcohol

Many styling products contain alcohol (not the type found in drinks) in their chemical composition. One of alcohol’s side-effects is to steal moisture as it dries, thus robbing your hair of its natural shine. Mousses for example often contain high concentrations of alcohol and can undermine any shine that you may normally have. Stylists are now recommending styling creams containing an ingredient called dimethicone to help create shinier hair.

Tip 3: Using The Correct Tools

Styling tools such as blow dryers and flat irons are considered basic necessities, however if used incorrectly they will damage your hair. Unfortunately when faced with the need for smoothing rough cuticles, heat is necessary to flatten them. To avoid the possibility of this kind of damage the tools of choice are now those made using ceramics know in the marketplace as “ionic ceramic tools”. The benefit of the ceramic materials is that they conduct and maintain a constant source of heat making them more effective plus the added benefit of infusing the scalp with negative ions which are known to product shinier hair with regular use.

Tip 4: Use Heat Protectors

One of the most overlooked preventative measures for maintaining shinier hair is the use of heat protectors. Whether you are using the latest ionic ceramic models or something less expensive, in both instance you should be using a heat protector product. Simply spritz the heat protector on your scalp and hair just before using your flat iron.

Tip 5: Benefits Of Natural Brushes

Excessive washing, brushing and styling is to blame for dulling hair since these activities work together to rob your head of the natural oils associated with shiny hair. Avoiding daily shampooing is a great first step which will allow natural oil to be replaced on your scalp. Next using a natural boar-bristle brush to help spread the natural oil throughout your scalp and hair, thereby restoring the shine and the appearance of shinier hair.

Tip 6: Apply Oil Treatments

Coconut oil, grapeseed oil, almond oil and castor oil are all known to help rejuvinate dull, lifeless hair giving it both shine and moisture. Each one of these oils has specific benefits beyond just restoring luster to your hair. For example, coconut oil also promotes hair growth and helps to prevent hair loss as does almond oil. Grapeseed oil helps to repair brittle hair, while castor oil is a great hair conditioner if you want shinier hair.

Tip 7: Hair Conditioners and Hair Masks

Following up on the previous tip, if your hair is dull and without natural shine, chances are that it is damaged. So it stand to reason that doing anything to help make your hair healthier is going to also help you obtain shinier hair. This is where the use of a deep hair conditioner or a hair mask at least once a week will help to smooth the cuticles and add more shine to your hair.

Tip 8: Cool Effects

Of all the tips for shinier hair already mentioned, this one is probably the easiest. Simply rinse your hair with cold or at least cool water after rinsing. The cold water causes the pores of the hair to close which means the hair will reflect light rather than absorb it. The resulting effect is shinier hair with minimal effort!

Following these eight very simple tips will put you on the road to having shinier hair that you will be proud to show off and may even help to prevent hair loss as well.