There are many tools on the market for face washing; brushes, cloths, even rubber devices that claim to be superior. Are any of these gadgets necessary to get clean skin?
The answer depends on your skin type and what you are trying to cleanse at the end of the day; makeup, excess oil, debris, layers of sunscreen.
If you have normal or combination skin and don’t wear a lot of makeup, your cleanser and your hands will get your skin clean on a daily basis. Add an enzyme mask once or twice a week for happy pores!
If you need an extra boost in your daily cleansing routine, consider your habits. Are you willing to keep a gadget charged (or replace the batteries on a regular basis)? Can you commit to changing brush heads when they wear out? All gadgets require maintenance to work properly so investigate before you invest!
The most basic way to get an extra hand cleansing your face is a simple washcloth. Have a few on hand so you can launder them regularly to keep bacteria from growing.
Be gentle when using any tool. Use soft brush heads and light pressure. Applying too much pressure can lead to broken capillaries and other long term damage.
Does your oily skin feel dry in winter? You are not alone. The seasons affect moisture levels in all skin types.
Seasonal changes are more noticeable in cold climates but warm, humid, climates also have fluctuations in moisture levels.
Trans epidermal water loss (TEWL) is the official name for loss of water through the skin to the surrounding atmosphere via the evaporation process. TEWL is a process which can take us by surprise, substantial dehydration sometimes occurs before a person realizes what is happening.
TEWL is affected by environmental factors such as humidity, temperature, the time of year and the moisture content of the skin. Your first line of defense is to stay properly hydrated internally.
Our skin is most dehydrated from December through March. Seasonal changes during April, May and June help the skin re-hydrate. The cycle of moisture loss begins again in July and continues until our skin is at its most dehydrated in December.
Knowing how the season will affect moisture levels in our skin allows us to plan our skin care accordingly. When the dry months begin, add a hydrating serum under your treatment cream at night.
Should I Buy Skin Care Products From A Discount Website?
February 24, 2019 / 8:16 am
We’ve all been there, shopping online we find a serum our esthetician sells but for a fraction of the price.
What’s the deal with these products? Why is a serum $148 at most locations but $99 on a discount site? Is it too good to be true?
Every company sets an MSRP (manufacturers suggested retail price) for their products, whether it’s skin care, clothing, or other items. Most companies even go so far as to monitor when their products can go on sale and how deep of a discount can be offered.
All accounts have agreed to sell products for the MSRP whether in person or online. Reputable companies want control over the pricing of their goods and will shut down accounts that don’t comply.
So how are certain sites selling the same product for less?
A large amount of these sales are expired product sold by a third party. Most retailers won’t risk losing their account just to offer an unapproved discount.
Or like I discovered recently, it could fake product.
I finished a favorite eye shadow palette only to discover it had been discontinued. A quick Google search led me to a few for sale on a discount site. Against my better judgement, I purchased it (they has great reviews!) only to discover it was a knock off. The packaging was identical; it was brand new and sealed but full of cheap eye shadow with no pigment.
Thankfully I spent less than $20 to learn that lesson.
A sales rep from a company I work with told me this story years ago. A customer returned a serum she purchased online because it just wasn’t the same as previous bottles. Their lab tested the contents of the returned bottle and it was apple cider vinegar not the $100 serum the customer thought she was purchasing.
If you can’t purchase your products directly from a professional, find a reputable website. Trying to save a few dollars on a discount site could be a disaster in the end.
Advanced Retinol is a concentrated anti-aging serum with retinol, bioidentical phospholipids, and glycolipids. Over time, the serum visibly firms the skin and reduces appearance of wrinkles and pores while fading age spots and pigmentation. The addition of lipids help restore skins moisture barrier and minimize any dryness or peeling from retinol. Advanced Retinol contains 0.5% Retinol: the #1 dermatologist-recommended ingredient for aging and UV-damaged skin. Retinol helps to improve visible signs of aging, such as lines and wrinkles, irregular pigmentation, loss of elasticity, and enlarged pores.
Luna works throughout the night to deliver visibly youthful, luminous, even-toned skin in the morning. Trans-retinoic acid ester complex reduces the appearance of pores and wrinkles, while visibly improving the signs of premature aging: fine lines, uneven texture, age spots, dryness, and dullness. Balanced with blue tansy and German chamomile essential oils, both rich in soothing, blue azulene, visible redness and the signs of sensitivity are neutralized, for a calm, even-toned complexion.
Intensive anti-wrinkle treatment that works through the night, visibly reducing the appearance of expression lines and deep wrinkles within 12 weeks. This is an exclusive combination of pure RoC® Retinol and an essential mineral complex. The formula starts to work as RoC® retinol penetrates deep within the skin’s surface to help fill in even your deep wrinkles.
SkinMedica Age Defense Retinol Complex .25 is formulated to renew the skin’s tone and texture without irritating the skin. Retinol helps combat the signs of premature aging while magnolia bark extract soothes inflammation. Ideal for use twice a week to build tolerance to formula.
I Tried SculpSure For My Chin Fat And This Is What Happened
January 27, 2019 / 8:48 am
I’ve always had a submental fat pad, regardless of the state of my body weight; it’s that little lump of fat under the chin that creates a “double chin” when you smile too big.
As I’ve gotten older, it started to play a roll in my neck looking….older. After an honest conversation with my amazing dermatologist, we decided I would benefit more from getting rid of the fat than tightening the skin.
He suggested Kybella injections but I was afraid of the swelling and downtime. I considered CoolSculpting but heard about a new alternative, Sculpsure, and decided it was the best option for me.
According to their website Sculpsure uses targeted laser energy to heat fat cells under the skin without affecting the skin’s surface. The SculpSure laser raises the temperature of fat cells damaging their structural integrity. Over the next three months, the damaged fat cells are processed and eliminated by the body’s lymphatic system. Fat cells are permanently removed and will not regenerate. Results can be seen as quickly as six weeks, and optimal results typically seen at 12 weeks.
During my consultation, two treatments spaced 4 weeks apart were recommended. The headgear is designed to keep the heating plate in place under the chin so it needs to be rather tight which was slightly uncomfortable. You have to sit up very straight so the plate makes contact with the underside of the chin which also wasn’t super comfortable but it wasn’t the worst procedure I’ve suffered thru!
The initial heating cycle was HOT! Once the heating and cooling cycles kick in it was bearable. I read a review that compares the sensation to a burn from a curling iron which I think is a little dramatic.
After the treatment, I had a mark from the pressure of the device against my chin but no redness or swelling.
The next day my jawbone felt sore from the pressure of the device but no redness or swelling of the tissue. I was instructed to massage the area for 10 minutes per day, I used my jade roller for which caused a bit of soreness but I wanted to make sure I was moving all the lymph fluid.
Two days after the first treatment my chin area felt totally normal. I continued to massage it with my jade roller as much as possible.
The week after I had some intermittent soreness in the tissue.
During the second week I still felt mildly sore at times but had no swelling or nodules which are possible side effects.
After the third week I started to notice a difference! I too photos to compare and sure enough, my chin was smoother. No soreness or pain at all. I began to get excited for my second treatment!
My second treatment was four weeks after the first and I’m pretty sure the technician increased the intensity a bit. Since I was already noticing results I was determined to get thru it! This time my chin felt sore directly after the treatment. I tried to use my jade roller that evening but was too tender.
The morning after second treatment I was still sore and slightly swollen. By the third day it was still sore to touch but swelling had gone down. I was sore while massaging my chin for a full week after my second treatment, it was nothing unbearable and since the results were getting better each day, I wasn’t alarmed.
12 weeks after my first treatment I am thrilled with the results! The fat pad that bothered me is gone, my jawline is more defined and there was zero downtime involved in the procedure.
This USDA organic power-packed serum blends 20 carefully selected organic oils and botanicals known for their ability to help combat UV induced damage and restore skin’s natural radiance. This concentrated antioxidant serum is also a delicious defense against future damage so we suggest you use it pre- and post- sun exposure together with your favorite mineral sunscreen. The heavenly scent of hibiscus and sweet orange will have you falling back in love with something good for you.
Radiant Skin Facial Oil is a blend of 9 essential oils that soothe irritated, chapped skin. This fast acting, leave on oil provides healing and anti-inflammatory qualities as it deeply nourishes dry, dehydrated and compromised skin. Use Radiant Skin Facial Oil to protect skin restoring suppleness and balance!
This ultra hydrating botanical oil restores a dewy luster to your skin. Naturally rich Jojoba and Sesame seed oils deliver advanced hydration, visibly reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. A blend of pure Lavender, Rosewood and Geranium essential oils provide a dewy, illuminated complexion and create a gorgeous aromatic allure. The perfect instant surge of hydration for a beautiful, radiant glow.
Nine natural oils multitask to help protect from free radical damage and to refresh skin’s appearance. Evening primrose, argan and jojoba oils help to boost hydration, reinforce skin’s moisture barrier, and soften the appearance of lines and wrinkles. Grapeseed and rosehip oils deliver vitamins c + e to improve tone and restore a healthy-looking complexion. Geranium and borage oils help balance skin. This quick-absorbing treatment provides instant hydration to help skin look and feel softer, smoother and brighter.
A botanically active blend of a cold-pressed powerhouse of superfood seed oils, this formula nourishes the skin with antioxidants, vitamins, essential amino acids, omegas 3, 6, and 9, and naturally soothing agents for a luminous, radiant complexion. Vitamins A and C help to brighten the skin’s appearance for healthy-looking vibrancy, while they fortify the skin with antioxidants to support anti-aging. Sinks in, leaving skin hydrated, protected, and velvety soft for an obsession worthy glow.
How often you swap out your skin care products depends on several factors, mainly the environment and your skin type.
If your city has four distinct seasons, you need two sets of products to get thru the year. A gel cleanser and light serum will control oil on warm and humid days but a cream cleanser and more moisture will be necessary during cold and windy months.
If you spend the majority of your time in a steady climate, you can have one routine for the entire year. So when should we try something new?
There is a common myth that skin gets used to a product and it stops working as well.
Your skin will not build up tolerance to a topical product. You shed the top layer of skin every 28-35 days, the product is interacting with “new” skin on a regular basis.
When we start using a new product, we see the most visible results in the first 30-90 days. Then the results plateau but the product is still doing its job. If you stopped using the product and your old skin conditions returned, you would realize how well it was working.
If you feel like your routine isn’t working as well as it used to or you are developing new skin issues, schedule a consult with a professional.
Most people need an entire range of new skincare products at least once per decade. Your routine from college isn’t going to serve you very well in your 30’s!
When you don’t get a full 8 hours your skin suffers. During a busy holiday season, lack of sleep will start to show in your skin.
1. Plan in advance. Look at your schedule for the week to see when you have the dreaded combination of late night + early morning commitments. Stay extra hydrated and cut back on salty food the day your sleep will be short. Also, consider skipping the alcohol at your evening event!
2. Wash your face when you get home, no matter how late. Traces of eye makeup will add to puffiness and irritation the following morning.
3. When you wake up, fill a large bowl with cold water, add some ice cubes and submerge your face for a few seconds. This jolt you into reality, get the blood flowing to your face and color in your cheeks.
4. Have 16oz of water before your first cup of coffee. It’s amazing how much better you feel when well hydrated!
5. Chill your jade roller in your bowl of ice water for a few minutes and give yourself a quick facial massage focusing on any puffy areas.
Eclipse SPF 50+ is an ultra-sheer, lightweight formula that absorbs quickly for a non-greasy matte ﬁnish. Formulated speciﬁcally for daily use and extended outdoor activities. Eclipse SPF 50+ is a unique fusion of scientiﬁcally advanced physical sunscreens, transparent Titanium Dioxide and micronized Zinc Oxide, coupled with pure Vitamin E. This antioxidant-rich blend provides superior water-resistant broad spectrum UVA/UVB protection.
A rich, non-greasy, “chem-free” face sunscreen that offers Broad Spectrum Protection against damaging UVA & UVB rays. Infused with youth promoting antioxidants, this 3 in 1 product functions as a face moisturizer, sunscreen and make-up primer. Red algae, aloe vera, jojoba, sunflower, pomegranate, cucumber, and green tea provide the face with additional sun defense and hydration. Large doses of uncoated, non-nano zinc-oxide protect the skin while providing anti-inflammatory properties that help with rosacea, acne, and melasma.
A 100% mineral primer in one translucent formula that blurs pores and mattifies skin. Wear underneath makeup for more coverage during the week, or on its own for less coverage during the weekend – and either way, you can rest assured that you’re getting SPF 40 protection. Major bonus points for the fact that butterfly bush extract helps guard your skin from blue light too.
DermaQuest Youth Protection SPF 30 blocks the sun’s harmful UV rays while simultaneously combatting signs of aging for a protected, more youthful complexion. Titanium dioxide and zinc oxide deflect and shield skin from UVA/UVB rays while shea butter and jojoba moisturize. Lines and wrinkles lighten as antioxidants absorb to nourish your facial features.
Two close girlfriends had baby showers this summer and I set up a DIY body scrub station as a party favor at both parties.
This gave me the opportunity to play around with a lot of fun ingredients and make new combinations for yummy DIY body scrubs!
I’ve always favored sugar over salt as an exfoliating agent and found that adding finely shredded coconut is effective and aromatic.
Here is one of my new favorite combinations:
Makes about 4oz.
5 Tablespoons sugar 2 teaspoons rose petals (I buy dried rose petals and run them through a food processor) 4 Tablespoons avocado oil 5-6 drops geranium essential oil
Mix all ingredients together in a bowl until well combined. Store in a jar with a tight fitting lid. Can be kept in the refrigerator if you don’t plan on using it up within 4-6 months. Not recommended for use on the face.
A professional chemical peel is part of many skin care rountines; they are effective when getting ready for a big event like a wedding or to soften the signs of aging.
A chemical peel you receive from your esthetician falls into one of two categories:
Superficial peels are left on the skin for 2-6 minutes then neutralized with water or a neutralizing agent. These are often part of a facial treatment and a popular example is glycolic acid.
Medium depth peels are more aggressive and self-neutralizing. They may produce several days of shedding skin and a popular chemical peel is this category is the Jessner Peel.
Medium depth, self-neutralizing chemical peels are very effective for a variety of concerns. Hyper-pigmentation, acne, acne scars, fine lines, wrinkles, and skin laxity can all be improved with peels from this category.
Your esthetician will determine which blend of acid is best for your skin type and concerns. There are many chemical peels available, most use combinations of TCA, retinol. salicyic, lactic, and mandelic acids.
If you are prone to cold sores or know you have oral herpes, take preventive medication for 2 days before having a medium depth chemical peel. Some peels can initiate a flare up.
During the treatment, multiple layers of solution will be applied to your skin with time for each layer to dry between applications. Your esthetician will use a fan to cool your skin and minimize discomfort.
Your skin will be protected with sunscreen after the chemical peel is applied. You cannot wash your face or sweat for at least 5 hours so schedule your appointment accordingly. You may have a chemical peel in the evening and safely sleep with the solution on your face. Thoroughly wash it off the following morning before showering or working out, you don’t want the solution to run into your eyes!
Over the next 36-48 hours, your skin will feel tight and smooth, maybe a little warm. The tight skin begins to shed around the mouth first since your facial movement helps loosen the dead skin. The shedding continues to the cheeks, forehead, and hairline over the next few days.
Schedule your chemical peel when you have no important events for the following 10-14 days.
Some skin types take longer to start the shedding process, some have a “second shed” (day of light but visible dryness) after the major shedding is finished. Skin can be unpredictable so give yourself ample time to heal before any important events.
Looking back a few decades, what skin care advice would I give my 25-year old self?
If I could turn back time, I would:
Be more diligent about sun protection. I lived in Los Angeles for 10 years and applied SPF daily but could have done more to protect my skin. I rarely wore hats or long sleeves when hiking outdoors and, looking back at old photos, my skin was consistently a few shades darker. I’ve reversed most of the visible damage but keep my fingers crossed when my dermatologist is checking my scalp every year!
Start taking care of my neck and chest in my earlier. I recently saw a photo from my 33rd birthday, the skin on my jawline and neck was so taut! At the time I was focused on keeping my acne from flaring up, I didn’t consider much below my chin.
Stop picking my acne. It’s simple. But so tempting. A pimple picked lasts twice as long as a pimple left alone. Not to mention the scars.
And now for the good news!
Here are a few things I’ve been consistent with and feel like it’s paid off:
Start using eye cream at a young age. You don’t need to start as a teenager like I did but ingredients in eye cream do a lot more to prevent than correct. Start before you have visible damage and be diligent to get results.
Commit to Retin A and Retinol…for life. To control my acne as a teenager, I used Retin A when it was new to the market. I suffered thru initial redness and flaking but it helped my acne and the residual marks. When I got into the skin care industry, I learned about the different types of Vitamin A derivatives both prescription and over the counter. This ingredient has proven over time to be the gold standard in both acne management and anti-aging.
Crystal Micrdermabrasion treatments are key. I credit crystal micrdermabrasion with clearing up residual acne scars and getting my large pores under control. I got certified in the treatment in the late 90’s (when it was new to the United States) and had as many sessions as my skin could handle. All these years later, if you want resurfacing with no downtime, it’s still the best option.
This gentle yet effective face cleanser works to remove dirt, impurities, and excess oil while still maintaining the skin’s essential natural oils. Ideal for men or women of all skin types, this gel formula contains glycolic acid, salicylic acid, and vitamins E and A to maintain a healthy clear complexion.
Vitamin Therapy uses soy and avocado oils to gently cleanse the skin and remove makeup without harsh sulfates. The addition of vitamins A, C, and E leave the skin fortified and ready for hydration. Vitamin Therapy is gentle enough to remove eye makeup. Suitable for normal, dry and combination skin types.
This mineral-rich Organic Seaweed gel cleanser effectively removes excess oil and surface impurities from skin while maintaining a hydrated, healthy looking complexion. Vegan Lactic Acid (derived from beets) gently exfoliates to visibly minimize pores. Hints of Lime, Cypress, Juniper and Jasmine essential oils energize skin and awaken the senses. Organic Seaweed deeply hydrates, leaving skin feeling balanced, refreshed and radiant.
Equipped with naturally derived ingredients rich in antioxidants, the SkinBrite Facial Cleanser combines the revitalizing properties of Shitake Mushroom, Green Tea Extract, Panthenol (Vitamin B5) and Vitamins C & E to gently even out and brighten dull skin tone while soothing and protecting the delicate properties of the skin.
Developed with dermatologists, CeraVe Foaming Cleanser’s gently foams to deeply cleanse without disrupting the skin barrier. This refreshing gel, with 3 essential ceramides and hyaluronic acid, effectively removes excess oil, dirt, and makeup. Fragrance free formula is suitable for sensitive skin.
Way back in high school, I bought a deodorant crystal because they were trendy. I faithfully dampened that rock and rubbed it under my arms yet I still smelled funky at the end of the day. I quickly returned to my stick of Secret and haven’t looked back since.
Working in close proximity to clients all day, having body odor is not an option. I need deodorant that works well for a long period of time!
My job involves reading a lot about personal care ingredients and how they interact with our bodies. A study showed a possible link between the aluminum in anti-perspirant and Alzheimers. Then a study disproved the link between anti-perspirant and Alzheimer’s.
After 30+ years of relying on anti-perspirant, I noticed it wasn’t working as well for me. Being a skin nerd, I did come digging. Over time, sweat glands begin to rely on the product and stop producing odor killing bacteria. Anti-perspirant was affecting my skin microbiome!
I decided to see if I could find a “natural” product that worked well enough for me to use during a workout or a work day. The body needs an adjustment period of 2-3 weeks when switching to from an anti-perspirant to a deodorant. It all made sense, during this time the odor killing bacteria would begin to flourish again.
Anti-perspirant controls odor and wetness. It contains aluminum particles to block the sweat glands and keep you dry. The controversy is over whether these particles absorb into the body or stay put on the surface of the skin until you wash them off. Some “all natural” brands make anti-perspirants; these still contain aluminum. One lists it as “recycled aluminum”, no joke!
Deodorant controls odor but not wetness. Most “natural” brands use ingredients like baking soda, coconut oil, shea butter, and essential oils.
Always read the ingredient panel, the statement “all natural” does not require any approval.
For the sake of my clients, I experimented on my days off. It was easy to try a new deodorant during a morning workout; if I wasn’t offensive by the time I got home I knew I was on to something!
It took some trial and error, one product left me smelling like rancid baking soda and I learned I am really partial to deodorant in a stick form, not a cream or spray. I found a natural deodorant with no aluminum that I like, I’d give it a solid 7/10.
I switch between the natural deodorant and my old anti-perspirant depending on my schedule for the day. My anti-perspirant works better since I use it less often and I’ve let my natural bacteria flourish. If I have a long workday plus an event after, I don’t need to reapply. On shorter days, I’ll opt for the deodorant.
Non-aluminum deodorant brands are everywhere right now. If you’re considering making the switch, give your body time to adjust. Introduce the new product gradually during times when you won’t be embarrassed if you end up with a little body odor.
The end of summer is close, it’s been fun but your skin isn’t looking or feeling it’s best.
Even if you have oily skin, you’re probably dehydrated. Travel, alcohol, and warm weather all suck precious moisture from our skin.
This is the one time of year you don’t have to be acne prone to have clogged pores. All of the above plus extra sunscreen will make sure of that.
Now is a great time to have a deep cleansing and hydrating facial. Treatments like microdermabrasion and LED light therapy are perfect for End-Of-Summer-Skin. Hold off on deeper chemical peels and hydroquinone-based lightening products until after Labor Day.
If the heat has triggered your melasma, now is a great time to start using a hydroquinone-free lightening product. These products will start to gently even your skin tone without photo-sensitivity. Save the stronger products and treatments for the fall and winter months.
Full disclosure, I’m a fan of injectable neurotoxins. In the hands of the right doctor, they are a great tool to for people who want to look youthful.
I had my first Botox treatment at 35 years old. The vertical line on my forehead had been there long as I could remember, getting more pronounced with each passing year. The prospect of softening it was intriguing.
The procedure itself didn’t feel as invasive as I expected. It took about 10 minutes and the result was subtle. I was so happy with the results, I continued to have injections every 5-6 months.
I’ve paired Botox with other anti-aging treatments (chemical peels, microdermabrasion, and LED treatments) and I’m generally happy with my face a decade later.
Then I had two Botox treatments in a row where the results changed dramatically. My eyes looked heavier and my forehead too frozen. I discussed it with my dermatologist but the corrections he made didn’t really help.
Unsure of what to do, I took a “Botox vacation” and let my face go back to its natural state.
I was curious; had a decade of paralyzing my forehead muscles affected their movement? Was Botox really “preventative” like some doctors said? Would my forehead be smoother than it was before?
My “Botox vacation” lasted a nine months. During that time, all the movement returned to my forehead; I’m happy to know my muscles still work! The heaviness left my eyelids as the Botox wore off but the vertical line on my forehead also returned.
Does my forehead look better now than it would have if I didn’t get all the injections over the past decade? Not necessarily.
I decided to see a new dermatologist and he used a different injection pattern to lift my brow while still softening the vertical line. I’m happy with the results and will probably get back on my regular injection schedule but it’s also nice to know what my face looks like without a little help!
Even when on vacation, I can’t help but check out all things spa and wellness related! I love the history of bath houses and thalassotherapy.
The Glanum archeological site near St Rémy de Provence, France is home to the remains of a healing sacred spring as well as ancient Roman Baths so I had to have a look.
The Sacred Spring was an underground cave with water flow and an additional tunnel that channeled wind. The wind created a noise that caused the people in 200 BC to considered it “devine”. They decided the “devine water” must have healing powers so an alter was built around the cave.
Over the years, this alter became more elaborate, eventually with stairs leading down to the water and treatment areas surrounding it.
Roman solders would travel from all over to receive treatments with the “devine water” for gout and other illnesses. They often stayed at Glanum for months and it was customary to leave a gift of a carved stone pillar in exchange for treatment. These pillars often included engravings of legs which led historians to figure out the water was used to treat disorders of the legs.
Next to the Sacred Spring, there are stone slabs (ancient massage tables) thought to have been used for massage and water treatments. The indent near the top held oil for the treatment.
Around 75BC Glanum became a popular destination for its Roman Bath house. The bath house was for rest and relaxation, not just healing purposes like the spring. Men used a mixture of sand and olive oil to exfoliate their skin before soaking in the pools of water.
The history is fascinating and the site is beautiful. I recommend checking it out if you’re in the area!