Recently I had the pleasure of meeting one of the Arcona representatives while completing training on their products. My first question to be answered was, “What does Arcona mean?” Arcona is the name of the lady chemist that developed this line of skin care products based on natural cosmeceutical grade ingredients in 1989.
My second question to be answered was, “with so many “natural” products out there what makes Arcona different?” The answer to that question is that Arcona products contain natural ingredients such as antioxidants, active enzymes, amino acids at a high concentration level that are designed to assist your skin’s renewal process. These cosmeceutical grade ingredients are obtained through cold-processing for maximum ingredient concentration without reducing the effectiveness.
I was also pleased to find out that Arcona products are vegan, with the exception of a couple of products containing honey! Arcona products also do not contain any fillers, parabens, perfumes, dyes or sodium lauryl sulphates.
I had the pleasure of trying The Basic Five Program for Normal Skin. The kit contains the Golden Grain Gommage (Morning Exfoliant.), Magic White Ice (Hydrator), Desert Mist (Protective Serum), Toner Tea Bar (Night time Cleanser), and Gentle Solution (Night time Repair Serum).
My first delight was applying the Golden Grain Gommage. The blend of distilled water, jojoba beads along with Cranberry, Blueberry White Tea and Grapefruit Seed Extracts gently exfoliated my skin leaving it fresh and smooth.
Next I applied the Magic White Ice. Because I have dry skin I was skeptical that this thin moisturizing lotion would be able to quench my skin’s thirst. I remembered during the training how we were informed that the Arcona products don’t have heavy creams. Their philosophy is to balance your skin’s hydration level and you won’t need heavy creams to compensate. I was very pleased with the results! My skin felt hydrated and renewed and I had a satisfaction in knowing that this had been achieved through natural ingredients and without harmful chemicals.
Finally I applied the Desert Mist. My first thought was this serum appeared oily and would sit on my face creating a shiny complexion. Absolutely the opposite! It quickly absorbed into my skin within a minute creating an antioxidant barrier that helped strengthen my collagen level and acted as a humectant to bind moisture to my skin.
In the evening I followed up by using the Toner Tea Bar. I ran a clean washcloth under warm water and rubbed it on the bar and proceeded to cleanse my face in upward outward circles as the directions suggested. The organic smell of the blend of black tea, green tea, honey, and essential oils by itself was already soothing and relaxing. I found the Toner Tea Bar to be deeply cleansing without drying my skin. I tend to have dry skin and this bar was wonderful on my skin even though this is the bar for Normal Skin!
I completed the night time treatment by applying the Gentle Solution as a night time treatment to nourish and repair my skin with its antioxidants.
After having used these products for two weeks now I can honestly say I enjoy them! I am very pleased with how my skin looks and feels and would highly recommend this line of products for the most scrupulous customer searching for a line of natural based products that are customer and environmentally friendly!
Have you entered our latest giveaway? You could win a 5-product regimen from NIA24! Enter now!
Since we exfoliate our face to remove dead skin and help promote cell turnover, there’s no question that we shouldn’t also exfoliate our body! The body is just as equal to the face and you don’t want your skin to age quicker on certain areas. Of course we want smooth, glowing, healthy skin…everywhere!
With a plethora of products available, there isn’t a reason not to try one… or ten! There are body products which are a liquid consistency and ones which are a grainy scrub consistency. Some offer a scent-sational experience or you can opt in for one with a cooling/warming sensation. Here are just a few different products which will help you to scrub your way to radiant skin!
A pad provides an easy and convenient way to exfoliate the skin, remove excess oils and residue while supplying the skin with antioxidants. Peel pads are used on clean, dry skin once daily. With use of a peel pad you’ll notice that your skin appears smoother, more even toner, brighter and you’ll also notice that your other products penetrate deeper and therefore, work much better!
Our top selling Philosophy Multi Use Peel Pads always get rave reviews. Lactic acid, emollients and vitamins in an easy-to-use daily pad provide exfoliation, hydration, and antioxidant protection in one easy step. This formula also contains anti-inflammatory ingredients to reduce swelling associated with rosacea or eczema.
What about those of us that are super acne prone? Someone that tends to get acne (whether it’s a teen, or a 35 year old going through hormonal changes) favors peel pads because they’re easy to use, sanitary and effective. ZO Skin Health Offects TE-Pads Acne Pore Treatment is an outstanding peel pad for treating and preventing acne. These pads are hydrated in 2% salicylic acid, the highest over-the-counter concentration, which gently exfoliates pore-clogging dead skin cells while botanical extracts calm the skin and glycolic acid provides anti-aging properties.
If someone is looking for a super exfoliating anti-aging treatment, we recommend Peter Thomas Roth UnWrinkle Peel Pads. They promote cellular turnover, reduce the appearance of lines and wrinkles, brighten and infuse the skin with vitamins A, C, E and D. These unique peel pads contain a blend of alpha, beta, gamma hydroxyl acids and amino acids (the building blocks of peptides) to provide comprehensive anti-aging benefits in one easy step. Win!
Those of you that are super sensitive, or if you simply don’t want to have any excess exfoliation (if you’re already using glycolic or retinol) there is a peel pad for you too! ARCONA Triad Pads cleanse, tone and hydrate the skin while infusing it with antioxidants and clarifying cranberry extract.
Guys love peel pads too. Men’s Health magazine voted Anthony Logistics Astringent Toner Pads their favorite peel pad in 2008 and our male customers keep this bad boy in their favorites. Anthony Logistics Astringent Toner Pads help eliminate impurities, tighten pores and control shine. The special blend of ingredients provides calming effects on skin while providing oil control, and working to heal any nicks post-shave.
What’s your favorite peel pad? Why do you love it? We’d love to know!
We’re sure that you endlessly hear about the importance of exfoliation. Your skin looks and feels better when it’s free of dead skin cells, residue and pore-clogging debris. We’re also sure that you know all about alpha hydroxyl acids and beta hydroxyl acids and enzymes and manual exfoliants, like scrubs. But… do you know about exfoliating your hair? Yes… hair! Dead skin cells, product residue, minerals from hard water and other pollutants build up in your hair, dull the shine, and make your hair brittle and more susceptible to breakage. No good!
Thank goodness that there are amazing products that you can use to ensure shiny, bouncy, healthy hair! So, here’s a simple and easy guide on keeping your scalp clear of baddies.
Begin with a clarifying scalp treatment. We’re obsessed with Rene Furterer Complexe 5 Regenerating Plant Extract. Its unique concentration of over 50% orange and lavender essential oils stimulates microcirculation and invigorates the scalp to enhance the growth of healthy, beautiful hair, while providing a deep cleanse. Use a clarifying scalp treatment once every one to two weeks to maintain a clear scalp.
Eliminate rubbish with a shampoo. Phyto Phytosylic is a twice-a-week shampoo for all types of hair that effectively eliminates flaking and treats dandruff problems. Its gentle formulation combines the benefits of essential oils with willow bark extract enriched with salicylic acid. Use Phytosylic on alternate days to Rene Furterer Complexe 5, or use this shampoo instead of the treatment if you’re a busy bee and can’t commit the time to Rene Furterer Complexe 5.
Once your hair is purified and clear of all the bad stuff, deposit some good stuff! Your freshly exfoliated scalp will drink up hair-growth boosting treatments! Try Phyto Phytoaxil Fortifying Treatment; Phytoaxil is exclusively formulated with natural active principles and is proven to help hair growth!
What are some of your favorite hair and scalp-purifying treatments? Maybe a trusty home-made remedy? We’d love to know!
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So it’s nothing new that money may be tight for everyone these days, even for the avid spa goers. There are priorities like kids, appointments, friends and family to attend to. Relaxing a little usually falls to the bottom of our to-do list. Here are some great products and tips for an at home facial, that will guarantee refreshing results.
The DIY facial consists of a few main components. You need just an hour of your day, a few products, and a calm mind. It is important to relax and have a little fun. You may want to get your kids involved by putting a mud or clay mask on them. Otherwise your spa getaway can be a solo project, or a fun time with your girlfriends.
Tea bags or cucumbers for the eyes. To use up the leftovers, you can make an iced tea or sip on some cucumber water while you relax.
Hand or body lotion and cuticle oil if you have it. (olive oil is a great alternative to soften hands and cuticles).
Essential oil of your choice. Any health food or specialty store should have a selection. Pick the scent that speaks to you and enjoy.
Applicators for products: A paint or nylon foundation brush will work great for your applying your mask.
Quiet place to lay down with relaxing music. This is simply a must!
Tip: You can store very hot towels inside of a large ziploc bag by rolling them up; this will keep them warm for a little while. For a longer lasting approach, try putting water on the bottom of your crock pot, enough to cover the bottom and fold up a few wet hot towels. Then put the lid on and presto… instant hot towel cabby! You can also put a few drops of essential oil into the pot for an aromatic experience.
While you’re masking you can give yourself a nice hand and arm massage. First apply your cuticle oil generously, and then follow with the body moisturizer of your choice. You also may have one of those spa foot tubs lying around from a few Christmas’ ago, now is the perfect time to dust it off and put it to use. You can place a few drops of essential oil in the water and enjoy a relaxing foot soak. For some bubbles add a teaspoon of bubble bath or shower gel to the water and enjoy. Hot towels will also come in handy for your foot bath.
After you cleanse remove with hot towel. Then apply a toner or water to your skin. You then will want to apply an exfoliator of your choice. For something quick, easy and non messy try an exfoliating peel pad. The Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare Alpha Beta Daily Face Peel/2 Steps is an amazing two step treatment with real results. For the lips you can use a little brown sugar and a few drops of water or olive oil (if you have some honey you can a little to the paste), this will give you a smooth finish for soft, healthy lips. After you have exfoliated and cleansed your skin and lips off with a towel you will want to apply a mask of your choice for 10-15 minutes.
After masking in pure bliss you will want to apply a treatment serum of your choice. You will need to go out into daylight and face the world after your relaxing facial so choose an antioxidant serum like Skinceuticals CE Ferulic. This will hydrate and protect your skin from free radical damage. Lastly, don’t forget the moisturizer preferably one that contains an SPF and an eye cream. Moisturizing your skin will seal in the benefits of the facial and also soften and hydrate your skin. An eye cream will do the same and will make your under eyes feel hydrated all day long. Try the Lisa Hoffman Spa Facial Eye Treatment. This is a weekly eye treatment just perfect for that spa facial experience. In every good facial your Esthetician will finish off with a lip balm or treatment, don’t forget this step just because you’re at home. The lips are important too!
We hope you take steps to put yourself first sometimes. You can try these simple tips and tricks for a luxurious facial all in the comfort of your own home.
For those of you wanting the benefit of microdermabrasion without all the cost involved we have some excellent choices for you. But what exactly is the definition of this fancy word? Dermabrasion is the use of a physical exfoliant to remove or rub off the top layer of dead skin cells. The result is a fresh layer of newer skin cells revealing a more glowing, healthy skin, less fine lines and wrinkles, and fewer sun spots or hyperpigmentation.
Microdermabrasion is usually done at either a dermatologist’s office or estheticians salon or spa. The “micro” part comes with the use of micro aluminum oxide crystals that are blasted onto the skin with air pressure and immediately vacuumed off the skin. Microdermabrasion has little if any down time.
SkinStore has some wonderful at home tools that provide you the opportunity to get similar results to microdermabrasion without the office or spa appointments, or the associated cost.
If you prefer a tool instead of a product you can use this by itself:
The Personal Microderm Tool Kit
Removes the thin layer of dead skin cells so that rejuvenation creams and serums can sink deeper into the skin and work more effectively…Greatly enhances poor, dull skin texture by gently resurfacing the superficial skin layers…Polishes and reduces fine, crêpe lines on the cheeks generally caused by aging and sun damage…DVD and written directions included.
If you prefer a product instead of a tool you can use one of the following by themselves:
Lierac Paris Micro Abrasion Exfoliating Smoothing Cream This stimulating smoothing cream contains alumina crystals for deep-down exfoliation and urea for optimum comfort, giving an immediate radiance-boosting effect, refined skin texture and diminishes the appearance of fine lines.
Dr. Brandt Microdermabrasion
Magnesium oxide crystals polish away dead skin cells leaving skin radiant. These diamond shaped crystals exfoliate evenly without scratching or irritating the skin while smoothing fine lines and wrinkles and improving the overall texture of the skin. Helps clear acne prone skin and improves scars. Ideal for the face, arms, hands and neck.
As with any skin resurfacing product, either chemical or physical, it is imperative to use an SPF of 20 or higher after having a resurfacing done. Not protecting your newly revealed skin cells can cause damage from UVA/UVB rays and cause your skin to rapidly age. SkinMedica TNS Ultimate Daily Moisturizer SPF 20 is a great choice.
Restore that youthful healthy glow to your skin and have everyone wondering how you did it!
Which do you prefer: “in office” microdermabrasion or “at home” microdermabrasion? Leave us a comment below!
If you are not familiar with Jurlique, you may want to look at the great products they have to offer. If you are already an avid Jurlique user, you should check out their new Fruit Enzyme Exfoliator. This is a great treatment you can add in to your regimen a few times weekly. You can leave this on for only 5 minutes to achieve clear radiant skin.
This exfoliator contains natural fruit extracts and enzymes to resurface and brighten the skin the natural way. Jurlique’s signature ingredient marshmallow root will detoxify, soothe inflammation, and condition the skin. This product also contains willow bark extract which helps to stimulate cell renewal and is a natural antiseptic and anti-flammatory.
This product is suitable for all skin types, but people who want a skin boost are going to love this product. The Fruit Enzyme Exfoliator will also assist in the effectiveness of other products that you may be using. It is going to help to firm, even out skin tone, and reduce fine lines.
As always you will want to wear a daily sunscreen if you are going to be using this product or any others that have skin resurfacing results. Jurlique Sun Lotion SPF 30+ would be an excellent choice. This is a broad spectrum sunscreen with Vitamin E to give the skin additional protection and antioxidant benefits.
Over worked and over looked! Our hands & feet are constantly being put to use and could probably use some well sought attention. It is easy to forget these areas in our normal routine; however, these areas are very important to our daily function. Given a bit of attention and some extra care, these areas will be healthy in just a snap!
For quick treatment and relief of hand/ foot stress, you can apply products daily to help. Many products can help keep these areas soft, hydrated, and protected. Alchimie Forever has a great product called 532nm Antioxidant Relief for Hands & Feet. This product will not only help soften the skin but will also nourish, detoxify, heal and protect the skin. With that said, it is easy to apply daily so your hands and feet maintain their health. If your life style includes heavier use of your hands or feet, they would most likely require more attention. You can incorporate an exfoliant into your regimen or even look towards investing in an area specific kit. In this day and age, it is very easy to find products specific to each targeted concern you may have. H2O Plus offers a product called Smoothing Mint Foot Rub which includes ingredients that will help smooth the skin, massage out tension and add moisture to the skin. Another recommendation for your hand or foot concerns is a product by Z. Bigatti. They offer a Foot Therapy Kit which comes with a foot cream, an impact fruit enzyme mask and also a silk toner. Use the fruit enzyme mask to gently exfoliate, clarify and improve skin texture. The toner is used to protect and the foot cream is used to hydrate the skin. What a great combination; don’t you think! So remember there are many different ways to pamper those tootsies and treat your hands, but the real deal is taking the time to tend to them. Take charge of your health, wave goodbye to dry stressed hands and walk away from cracked, callused feet!
To scrub or not to scrub, that is the question as we approach these winter months. We want to put our best face forward for all our special holiday events. The heat, climate and lack of hydration can leave our skin looking lifeless and dull. There are a variety of great exfoliants out there, from gentle, to really high powered and effective, that can offer the perfect solutions for your specific skin type and concerns.
Let us begin with the sensitive skin guys and gals; there is something for both of you to use. Having sensitive and dry skin can seem like a curse sometimes. There are always little patches of skin that never seem to smooth out. After you apply your foundation you notice even more how dehydrated and dry your skin is. This is because all the dry dead skin is not being exfoliated and has nowhere to go but stay on your skin. For dry and sensitive skin types we suggest Sothys Gommage Exfoliant. This is a gentle yet effective treatment to release the surface dryness on your skin, making it softer and smoother. It does not contain any granules, which means it will not scratch or damage your delicate skin. It’s an oat flour base product that contains bee’s wax to help seal in the skin’s surface moisture. When using a gommage product you just have to be a little patient. All you need to do is leave this on your dry skin for about a minute. Then you want to gently slough off the peel in a circular motion. Do this very slowly, as you do not want to pull or irritate your skin. Once the gommage is gone so is your dull, dry skin. This product also works great for the tops of your hands!
If you are searching for a gentle scrub instead of a gommage, we suggest Avene Gentle Purifying Scrub. This has a non-abrasive gel texture that will unclog your pores and purify your skin. It really is a must try for people with sensitive skin, that may be apprehensive to try scrubs.
For skin types more on the oily side, try Philosophy Never Let Them See You Shine Scrub.This is a cleanser and scrub all in one, great for on the go lifestyles. This product will help to control oil and shine, but also buff away all the dull tired skin. This does not have any added oils, so it is just perfect for oily skin types. This product also contains jojoba ester which will soothe and condition your skin, leaving it fresh and fully hydrated.
If you are looking for a really effective peel treatment we suggest something with an AHA base to brighten and improve the skins tone and texture. If your skin is on the oily side and you have breakouts, try the Topix Gly Sal 10-2 Pads. These pads have 10% pure glycolic and 2% salicylic acid. Glycolic acid is the smallest of hydroxy acids, so it can really penetrate into your skin, removing all the dead surface layers of skin. Glycolic can also help to reduce wrinkles, acne scarring, and hyperpigmentation and improve many other skin conditions. The salicylic acid works with the witch hazel for skin toning and astringent benefits. This would work great to protect your skin from future breakouts, and help clear up the existing ones. This is a great treatment to do up to 3 times a week for skin smoothing results. These little pads are handy, effective, and the price is right. They also come in 5-2 for people that have skin that is not as oily and a bit more sensitive. Another great peel is the Philosophy Micro delivery Peel Pads.These peel pads use a combination of lactic acid, and citrus acids to really give you a whole new look. These small pads contain full-sized antioxidants with an enriched formula to protect and soothe your skin. These pads work great for dry and dehydrated skin types.
If you are looking for a highly effective skin resurfacing product we suggest a microdermabrasion peel. Before you spend all your money at the dermatologist for this procedure, take a look at these products: Dr. Brandt Microdermabrasion has a great crystal polish formula, which will help the skin look radiant and new. Dr. Brandt uses Magnesium oxide crystals, similar to that of an in-office peel. The crystals will not scratch or irritate your skin; you will only have smooth skin using this treatment. Even those that have sensitive skin associated with rosacea can use this product every two weeks or so. Another great micoderm treatment is Dr. Michelle Copeland Microdermabrasion Formula.This product uses AHA in conjunction with powerful antioxidants to exfoliate and soothe the skin. This product will not give you the flaking effect that a lot of peels can have because of its soothing benefits. This treatment is a little less abrasive then the Dr. Brandt microdermabrasion, so if your skin is on the sensitive side, we suggest trying this one out.
A great tool to use in conjunction with your favorite cleanser to help exfoliate is the Clarisonic Skin Care System. This little tool needs to be mentioned when it comes to offering a wonderful cleanse and exfoliation. It has double the power than manually cleansing your skin but is gentle enough to use twice a day. You can choose to get a sensitive brush head so even testy skin types can benefit from the system. This is a staff and customer favorite, and also a fabulous gift idea for the holidays!
There are many different types of skin refining products to choose from. They offer similar results, by helping to improve the tone and texture of your skin. By using an exfoliant on a regular basis, you will notice how beautifully your other products will work. Serums will penetrate better, makeup will glide onto your skin, and you will have an overall healthier glow. When using products that exfoliate we recommend using a sunscreen during the day to protect your new skin. We hope that these products will help shed the dull winter skin, and prepare you for the warm months ahead!
Looking for a new way to exfoliate? Have we got a product for you! SkinCeuticals has recently launched Retexturing Activator, which uses a chemical exfoliant that is unlike any other. The revolutionary product surpasses the results of a 20% glycolic daily use treatment!
We all love our tried and true alpha hydroxy acid for exfoliation, but sometimes it can become irritating to our skin and can cause sensitivity to the sun. Alpha hydroxy acid works by dissolving the glue like substance between dead skin cells thereby allowing the dead cells to slough off. The SkinCeuticals Retexturing Activator works differently. This patent pending product stimulates the protease enzyme in your skin that aides in your natural exfoliation and hydration.
The protease enzyme basically herds the skin cells to the surface of your skin, where they can turn into a corneocyte. Corneocytes are a component of the stratum corneum layer of the skin and contain proteins and some other water soluble substances that help your skin’s barrier to function properly, keeping you well hydrated and protecting you from any cellular damage. Once these protease enzyme have done their job, the corneocytes are ready to fall off (natural exfoliation). Proteases help keep this process moving so that you can produce new skin cells faster and keep your skin’s barrier in proper shape. This even helps to prevent acne from forming since the dead skin cells aren’t able to collect and bind together to clog your pores.
If your protease enzymes are stimulated, then your cell renewal rate will be increased because you are naturally shedding skin cells faster. Your body will produce new healthy cells to fill their place. What does this mean for you? Healthier, younger looking, more hydrated, even toned skin! Without the irritation!
So now you may be asking “what exactly is the active ingredient that makes this product so fantastic?” There are a couple of amazing ingredients; the one we are most excited about is the Hydroxyethyl Urea/ Aminosulfonic Acid Compound. SkinCeuticals uses this ingredient in a 25% concentration. The SkinCeuticals Retexturing Activator also contains Kombucha and Hyaluronic Acid.