Before you decide to switch regimens to address breakouts for the 100th time, read this!
So you just started a regimen a week or two ago that your esthetician raved about and now you are breaking out more than ever? Believe it or not, this is not the time to change routines.
It is crucial to understand how your skin functions and how certain ingredients influence its behavior so you know what to expect when starting a new regimen.
Normally, your skin regenerates itself every 28-50 days depending on age and skin health. You shed skin cells daily, but the amount is so minute that you rarely see it happening. This is called natural exfoliation. Acne regimens rely on products that will enhance this process (along with anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory ingredients).
When starting a new acne regimen, your skin goes through an accelerated exfoliation and renewal process. This allows for breakouts to show up much more quickly than they would have otherwise. The products are not creating new breakouts, but rather unveiling them at a sooner date. You would have seen the same blemishes surface weeks down the road, but since your skin function has been sped up you are seeing 5-6 weeks worth of breakouts in one or two weeks. This amazing and horrifying process is commonly referred to as “purging”.
This can definitely be alarming, but it is very important to adhere to the regimen suggested to you so you can get through this period, and you will get through it. The average time frame is 7-10 days, but it is not uncommon for it to stretch to 2-4 weeks. It all depends on the severity of acne you were experiencing and how quickly you can advance your regimen. Sensitive skin has to advance more slowly so the “purging” period may be a bit longer than tolerant skin which can increase the frequency of product usage more quickly. This breakout period can be minimized by using products with anti-bacterial properties such as benzoyl peroxide or topical antibiotics from your derm. We suggest sticking to a regimen for 6- 8 weeks and sometimes longer before deciding to switch, unless you are have a reaction (not skin purging). Keep in mind that not all acne will clear in 8 weeks, but you will definitely get a sense of the products and if you will be able to achieve better results over time.
The bottom line is to stick it out and you will see clearer, more refined healthy skin.
The key players in this acclimation process are:
Alpha and Beta Hydroxy Acids (glycolic, lactic, salicylic, malic, mandelic acids) - Hydroxy acids have the ability to break down corneodemosomes on the surface of the skin. These are what hold the dead skin cells together. Think of the mortar on a brick wall. Once the corneodesmosomes are dissolved, the dead skin cells are ready to fall off. Using a hydroxy acid will speed up the rate that the cells are shed which means your skin has to make new skin cells to fill their place. When these new cells die, they are pushed to the surface for their turn to be shed. Any debris or microcomedones (pimples) rise to the surface too, which is why it seems like the product is making you break out. When using these ingredients for acne, daily is usually best.
Retinol – Retinol works from the inside out, which is opposite of a hydroxy acid. This ingredient stimulates cell renewal first, which then forces your skin to shed the dead skin cells from the top layer. This is a very potent ingredient and flaking and peeling is a common reaction because it has the ability to speed up the production of new skin cells so fast that you can visibly see the shedding of the old skin cells, which is usually invisible. This is generally not a desirable outcome, so moderation is the key with retinol. Use maybe 2-3 times a week.
Ask a professional before starting a regimen with either of these active ingredients.
Have a questions for our estheticians? Ask us here.
These days more and more consumers are becoming increasingly cautious about the ingredients used in their skincare and cosmetic products and they are trying to stay away from chemicals such as parabens, petrochemicals, or synthetic fragrances, just to name a few.
Companies are certainly aware of this and many of them are jumping on the “green” bandwagon. You are probably seeing a lot more products on the market labeled with the terms “organic” and “natural” and you may be wondering, what is the difference between these two? Is there a difference? The short answer is yes, there is a difference between “organic” and “natural”.
To start with, there may be some confusion for the consumer as to how these terms are regulated. In the United States, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is the government agency that regulates the labeling and safety requirements for the cosmetic industry. Yet, they do not have a sanctioned definition of either of these terms. While the term natural is not regulated by any agency, the term organic is. The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) oversees the National Organic Program (NOP) which regulates what can be considered organic. That being said, the USDA does not have a separate category for cosmetics, they use the same standards used for the food industry.
There are also International organizations that certify organic products. ECOCERT is a worldwide organization working in over 80 countries and COSMEBIO is a French organization created specifically for cosmetics and skincare.
So, what does is actually take for a product to really be “organic”? To earn a certified organic label 95% of the ingredients used must be organic. For a product labeled “made with organic ingredients” the required percentage goes down to 70%.
Natural is a broader term usually used to indicate that a minimal amount of chemicals were used in either the process of making the product or the actual formula of the product. Typically, “natural” products are free of synthetic additives such as chemical preservatives, synthetic coloring or fragrance. However, seeing natural on the label is not a guarantee that any of these ingredients will not be in the product. If you are still uncertain, always check the ingredient listing.
With so many choices out there it can be overwhelming. How does the consumer know what they are getting? What’s the bottom line for all of you ingredient-savvy consumers? Read those labels!
I’m always on a search for the best eye cream, and so are our customers. At least five times a day I have customers asking “What is the best eye cream you have?”
Of course, ‘best’ depends on customer preference. Things that work for some people may not work well for others, but it seems that there are those cult-favorites with the loyal following that always seem to top the ‘favorites’ charts for just about everybody.
Here are some magic little potions we (and our customers) can’t stop raving about:
Neocutis Lumiere Riche Bio-Restorative Eye Balm with PSP is excellent for dry, dehydrated skin and is formulated with 30% more PSP. Lumiere Riche helps target the most prevalent signs of skin aging including: lines and wrinkles, under eye darkness, stress and fatigue, puffiness and hydration. This is a periorbital wonder cream!
Osmotics Blue Copper 5 Firming Eye Repair features a powerful combination of active copper, cutting edge peptides and anti-aging proteins that help boost collagen levels lost due to aging. This soothing, rich, cream-gel formula improves the overall health, balance and quality of collagen to firm, tone and tighten the entire eye area, while reducing the depth of fine lines and wrinkles.
SkinCeuticals Eye Balm is a synergistic combination of highly effective, yet gentle phytochemicals rehabilitates mature, aging skin around the delicate eye area. This rich, corrective emollient treatment is specifically formulated to counter the three prime signs of aging— moisture loss, collagen breakdown, and free radical damage. A natural anti-inflammatory is added to reduce the appearance of under-eye puffiness, while a soothing agent derived from the chamomile plant calms irritated skin.
L’Occitane Immortelle Eye Balm – An eye cream with anti-aging benefits that reduces dark circles, puffiness and signs of tiredness around the eyes. Formulated with Immortelle floral water, this cream will soothe, moisturize, nourish and tone the delicate skin around the eyes.
Give one (or all) a try- we’re sure you’ll love them!
You can find these and many other great products on SkinStore.com!
Winter can wreak havoc on your hands. The skin on our hands is thin, delicate and often dry making them more vulnerable to cold winds, frost, and dry heated air.
SkinStore has the cure; Barielle Intensive Hand Treatment (gloves included) is an intense, overnight, moisture treatment. It’s formulated with revolutionary Oat Beta Glucan, which acts as a natural anti-irritant. The Barielle Intensive treatment is the perfect remedy for treating and healing rough, dry, scaled, and chapped hands. This greaseless penetrating cream provides a protective barrier directly on the skin to prevent dryness and is safe for even the most sensitive skin.
To apply, massage the cream into hands, put on enclosed gloves and allow the healing powers of the Oat Beta Glucan, Aloe Vera, Jasmine, Honeysuckle, Passion Flower, Rosehips, and Vitamin E to transform your hands into the soft, healthy and hydrated hands that you are seeking. No more irritation and dryness!
For best results microwave the gloves for 10 to 15 seconds, then put the gloves on and allow cream to penetrate overnight. Make sure the gloves are not too hot before putting them on.
Spices are not just for cooking, many skincare companies utilize spices, or the oils obtained from them, in the formulation of their products. Here are just a few with notable skincare benefits.
• Fennel – Fennel’s ability to decrease irritation and redness make it a great ingredient for sensitive skin. It also has the capability to tone and tighten making it a useful tool for mature skin and a great addition to an eye cream. The Obagi Nu-Derm Eye Cream contains fennel. With its ability to stimulate lymphatic drainage and reduce puffiness, Fennel is a useful firming agent.
• Cloves – These little evergreen tree buds have been used all over the world for centuries. Clove oil is an effective antimicrobial agent and is often added to cleansing products such as Eve Lom Cleanser. Additionally, cloves are rich in Vitamins A and C, two very effective antioxidants.
• Cinnamon – Individuals with oily or acne-prone skin will benefit from this yummy ingredient due to its antibacterial and naturally astringent properties. Juara Sweet Black Tea and Ginger Mattefying Moisturizer is a great product that makes use of its benefits. This refreshing gel-cream combines the anti-aging benefits of fermented sweet black tea with the shine-reducing and pore-purifying properties of ginger and cinnamon for a luminous matte finish. Completely oil-free, it immediately reduces shine while at the same time helping delay and reverse signs of aging.
• Pepper – Pepper is a popular ingredient in body products due to its ability to boost circulation. Bliss Blood Orange and White Pepper Sugar Scrub also have analgesic properties and can be used to soothe muscle aches. Aromatherapy Associates De-Stress Muscle Gel is another great muscle soother.
• Turmeric – This is a popular ingredient because of its antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties. Turmeric is also a powerful antioxidant and can help with the lightening of hyperpigmentation. For a more in-depth look on Turmeric, see our previous blog. [“Hot Ingredient – Turmeric”]
Like this blog and share it with your friends on Facebook! Or leave us a comment, questions, or feedback – if you have a question, one of our estheticians will respond to you directly when you supply your email address in your response, remember, email addresses are not posted with your comment.
It’s that time of year again! We have to start thinking of all the photo opportunities that fall brings. Back to School and the upcoming holiday season- they’re all occasions when cameras are ever present. We want to make sure your smiles are ready for a close up.
GoSmile products offer a safe and effective way of lightening teeth in no time! If you’re in need of some big time whitening try the GoSmile Whitening System. Stains are reduced in as little as one 30 minute treatment! This easy to use device is to be hand held. Start by brushing your teeth, then use a tissue to blot dry the surface of your teeth. Rub the included teeth whitening serum in a circular motion ensuring each tooth is thoroughly coated. Then press the “G” button to turn on the light. Insert the Smile Whitening Light into the mouth and shine the light on your teeth until the device beeps and automatically shuts off. Immediately repeat ampoule plus light process two more times, for a total of 3 passes of ampoule plus light. Remember, no food or drink for 20 minutes after use.
If you don’t have 30 minutes to devote, no biggie, we still have you covered. Supersmile Professional Whitening System is a two item system that whitens and cleans teeth. Use equal parts of the Supersmile Whitening Accelerator Component and Supersmile Original Mint Whitening Toothpaste, and brush teeth in circular motions for 2 minutes.
You could even use the products in conjunction with each other if you’d like…
Let’s talk underarms. They’re the pits. They are pit-iful. They need a ton of TLC to stay looking smooth and healthy.
There are a few things you can do to prevent ingrown hairs, rashes, and tenderness when shaving your underarms. There are also a few tricks to getting a closer shave than ever before, and going longer between shaves, too!
Always shave in the shower or bath, when your skin is damp. Hot water softens the hair and the skin holds onto the hair less tightly when it’s damp. Never, ever dry shave, especially under your arms.
Always use shave cream or gel, and invest in a high quality razor. Your razor should have at least three blades and a moisture cushion around the blade. One-blade disposable razors shouldn’t have ever been made.
Because the hair under your arms grows in a circle type of shape rather than in one direction, it’s important to maneuver your blade to adjust to hair growth – always shave downwards first, then upwards, and then sideways if you have any strays. Don’t go over the area more than three times with your blade, and if you have any stubborn strays left remove them with tweezers post-shower.
Don’t apply deodorant or antiperspirant after shaving, let your skin rest overnight, or at least for a few hours. If you must use something then use a gentle or natural formula with soothing ingredients like aloe.
If you’re prone to getting bumps or rashes after shaving apply an aftershave gel post-shave, we like Shaveworks The Cool Fix because it’s soothing, cooling, and has glycolic acid to exfoliate the skin and prevent ingrowns.
We are so excited to announce our latest giveaway! Starting now, through June 5th you can enter for a chance to win a GlamGlow YOUTHMUD Tinglexfoliate Treatment! ($69 Value!)
This amazing product:
- Activates collagen synthesis.
- Absorbs impurities without removing natural oils.
- Helps to correct discolorations while improving skin texture.
- Can be used by all skin types.
Entering the giveaway is simple. All you have to do is CLICK HERE and fill out the entry form.
Spring is here and warmer longer days are fast approaching. Many of us may have been prisoners of long pants, long sleeve shirts and no sunlight. Even if you’re not going to be out in direct sunlight, those lightweight spring outfits usually show a bit more skin, and who wants to be a ghastly pale shade?
For those of you who want a little extra color without hitting a Tanning Booth (please don’t!), SkinStore offers some excellent self tanning products that are safe and effective:
1. Fake Bake Original Self Tan Lotion – New technology promotes a smoother application for a deeper, darker, longer-lasting tan on the skin by up to 50%. Four and a half Star Customer Rating!
2. ARCONA Bronzer – Self Tanner – This light, oil free bronzer/self tanner creates radiant, natural looking color without the sun. Natural based product! Be the first to rate this product online!
3. Pevonia Self-Tanning Emulsion – This self-tanning light-textured emulsion combines natural color (Caramel), with DHA (Sugar Cane), Squalane, and Vitamins B and E, to promote immediate absorption for a smooth, streak-free application. Natural based product with a Five Star Customer Rating!
4. Tan Towel Plus Half Body Classic Self Tanning Towelettes – Provides a natural looking glow that is simple to apply, with no odor or mess and it does not streak. One towelette will cover the whole body. For fair skin. Four and a half Star Customer Rating! Recommended by staff member Valerie!
5. Dr. Dennis Gross Alpha Beta Glow Pad – The only anti-aging, exfoliating sunless tanner that contains active Vitamin D, Soy Proteins, Alpha and BetaHydroxy Acids to exfoliate, tighten pores, eliminate blackheads and help fade existing sunspots for an even, streak-free glow. Four and a half Star Customer Rating, Recommended by staff member Anthony!
As with almost all self tanners be sure to exfoliate any areas of skin you intend to use a self tanner to promote smooth even application and prevent early fading!
Visit SkinStore on Facebook.com and let us know what your favorite self tanning products are!
Hooray, the warmer weather is here bringing with it wonderful sunny weekends and a desire to get away for a few days. Looks like it’s time for a weekend getaway! The only problem left after deciding where to go is trying to decide what to pack. If your bathroom vanity or cabinets are anything like mine, they are filled to the brim with various beauty products. How on earth do you decide what to take with you?
Here are my top three essentials for every weekend getaway:
For a quick yet thorough cleanse the Ole Henriksen Truth to Go Cleansing Wipes are my go-to items. These wipes not only cleanse, they are also infused with anti-aging ingredients such as Pepha-Tight micro algae, Vitamin C and CoQ10. You gotta love multi-tasking products!
Another compact time saver that I love is the Oscar Blandi Pronto Dry Shampoo. It’s perfect for use in between regular shampooing or to revive hair during the day. Excess oil at the roots is quickly absorbed by the rice, oat and tapioca starches while lemon verbena leaves a refreshing scent.
For the most part, I like to keep my makeup pretty low maintenance on vacation unless I’m going out somewhere special. That’s why I love tinted moisturizers! My favorite is the Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare All in One Tinted Moisturizer SPF 15. Moisturizer, color and SPF in one step, it doesn’t get much easier than that. It’s lightweight and provides lasting hydration and it also contains the antioxidant benefits of Vitamins C and E.