Archive for the ‘Eye, Lip, and Facial Care’ Category

A Guide to Facial Peels

       
Sunday, July 20th, 2014

A Guide to Facial PeelsIf you’ve had skin problems or feel like you look older than you feel, a facial peel might be just the thing to bring back your smooth and youthful glow. Weather, sun exposure, smoking, acne, age and more can all affect facial skin, and sometimes you just want a little help. This isn’t radical plastic surgery; a peel helps freshen your skin and brings out the real you.

Where to Get Facial Peels

Dermatologists can perform facial peels, but it depends on how deeply into the skin’s layers you need to go to achieve the look you want. For light treatments, you can apply over-the-counter products by yourself. For deeper treatments, you’ll need a trip to the doctor.

What Facial Peels Do

There are many conditions that can make your skin appear dull, uneven or blotchy. A facial peel renews your skin faster than nature can and also corrects certain conditions that nature lets go. Some of the ways a facial peel can help include:

  • Reducing the appearance of small lines around your eyes and mouth as well as wrinkles due to age and sun damage.
  • Lightening freckles, age spots and darker areas that sometimes occur with pregnancy or use of birth control pills.
  • Treating light scars and some forms of acne.
  • Helping pre-cancerous facial growths with deeper peels.

How Peels Work

Facial peels use acidic solutions to remove your skin’s outer layers and reveal fresher ones underneath. Alpha hydroxyl acids (AHA), which include glycolic and lactic acids, are common mild forms; carbolic (phenol) and trichloroacetic (TCA) acids work deeper into the skin.

These solutions may sting and cause redness as they remove skin layers. Mild peels typically look and feel like bad sunburn. Deeper peels might cause blistering and require bandages during healing. All of them create sun sensitivity, and it’s important to protect yourself by avoiding exposure as you heal.

Success with Facial Peels

Everyone’s skin is different and your results might be completely different from someone else’s. Testing solutions or lotions on a small patch of skin before applying them to your entire face is always a good idea.

People who have fair skin and light-colored hair generally receive better results from medical peels than those with darker complexions. A facial peel sometimes causes permanent skin lightening, which is naturally more noticeable on darker tones. Treatments can still be successful, but it depends on what you want to achieve. At-home treatments probably won’t cause such problems, and you can discuss your concerns with doctors regarding deeper peels.

Treating Yourself

If you’re interested in light treatments that you can do at home, there are lots of good products. Some exfoliating treatments use rough granules to remove dead skin cells. BABOR Cleansing CP contains ground peach pits, and ClariSEA Green Tea Sea Salt Cleanser uses microbeads and salicylic acid to clarify skin. Both also contain moisturizers to sooth and repair skin.

For a slightly deeper treatment, there’s Purifying Glycolic Gel for daily cleansing, and That’s Incredi-Peel Glycolic Resurfacing Pads offer spa-strength results at home. Note: These products contain AHAs and may sting, create redness or increase sun sensitivity. Faithfully follow the instructions, and soon you’ll be glowing with fresh, young skin.

Seven Winter Tips For Soft Lips

       
Tuesday, January 28th, 2014

Seven Winter Tips For Soft Lips
The cold days of winter can be the perfect inspiration for pulling out those gorgeous sweaters, chic boots and attractive scarves. You might even reinvent your makeup strategy and skincare regimen to look and feel your best during the most frigid of days. In the middle of all the frenzy, we often tend to ignore our precious pouts. Achieving soft, kissable lips, all through the year, does not have to be a mountain of a task. With a few simple tips, you will be well on your way to flaunting those absolutely attractive lips, no matter what the season.

Don’t Overdo The Lip Balm
Believe it or not, too much lip balm or gloss can actually dry your lips out. Our lips are conditioned to produce natural oils for protection and nourishment. By constantly applying a lip balm, you are reducing your body’s need to generate its own essential moisture. Choose a deliciously flavored lip balm for instant revitalization, and always remember that less is more.

Remove Those Dead Cells
Smiling with chapped and dry lips can be painful and embarrassing. Keep them smooth and supple by exfoliating with a quality lip scrub, once or twice a week. Empower your lips to sport that perfect shade of lipstick, all day and night, with a gentle scrub and intense moisturizing treatment.

Lip Masks Are In
A rejuvenating lip mask can be the perfect way to get rid of dead cells and heal your lips inside out. Make your own by combining a tablespoon of sour cream with a few drops of lemon juice and half a teaspoon of olive oil. Apply on lips and wash off after 20 minutes to reveal beautiful baby soft lips underneath. Follow with a lip renewal treatment in your favorite shade and flavor, such as Le Couvent des Minimes – Smile Lip Balm Honey.

Don’t Just Settle For Any Lipstick
Not all lipsticks are made the same. Choose yours wisely. Many lipsticks are infused with moisturizers that can boost the appearance and health of your lips. For a high-gloss look that is packed with all-day hydration and flavor, try Philosophy Fresh Cream High Gloss, High-Flavor Lip Shine.

Tap Into The Benefits Of Vitamin E
Your lip care routine does not have to be elaborate or time consuming. For an instant boost, dab a few drops of vitamin E oil on your lips to restore a youthful texture and negate the signs of aging. Vitamin E is loaded with antioxidants that fight free radicals and protect against sun damage. Choose lip care products that contain vitamin E for added benefits, such as Yu-Be- Lip Therapy or Dermalogica- Age Smart Multivitamin Power Firm for Eye and Lip Area.

Resist The Urge To Lick Your Lips
Licking dry and sore lips can worsen the situation by depleting the thin layer of natural oils on the surface. Never rub, lick or pick on your irritated and chapped lips.

Find Lip Balms With SPF
Your lips are exposed to the sun as much as your skin. Lips do not contain the protective pigment called melanin, found in your skin, and are equally prone to damage from the sun’s ultraviolet rays. A lip balm with SPF can be an ideal choice for protective coverage all day long. Try Kamins Chemist- Lip Balm SPF 20 for an intensive moisturizing lip treatment.

Tips for a plumper pout

       
Tuesday, November 26th, 2013

Tips for a plumper pout

There's hardly anything more alluring than full lips, but not everyone was blessed with this feature. Fortunately,there are plenty of ways to make your pout appear more plump.

  1. First thing's first: You need to get rid of any dead, dry skin to avoid flakes and ensure that your lip color goes on smooth. Exfoliating can also accelerate blood flow to the lips, giving you a natural flush without even applying color. Just a dab of the Philosophy Kiss Me Exfoliating Lip Scrub is enough to do the trick. Apply with your fingers and massage in a circular motion to slough off dull skin cells and reveal a softer pout. This step is especially crucial in the winter and when you're rocking the matte lip trend.
  2. Next, you should reach for products that contain both moisturizing ingredients and peptides. Dermatologist Dr. Dennis Gross told Woman's Day magazine that he recommends this step to help facilitate collagen production, which tends to slow down with aging. He advised using a lip balm with nourishing shea butter and vitamin E, like the Dermalogica AGE Smart Renewal Lip Complex.
  3. One of the easiest ways to achieve fuller lips, according to celebrity makeup artist Kimara Ahnert, is with a lip gloss specifically formulated for plumping. She told Woman's Day that ingredients like cinnamon and mint can actually make lip tissue swell by stimulating the blood vessels. The tingling sensation that comes after applying Too Faced Lip Injection Extreme Turbo Power Supreme is what lets you know it's working. You can glide this clear gloss on by itself or over another hue to increase moisture by up to 60 percent and make your pout look up to 40 percent fuller.

This Thanksgiving, Feed Your Skin with DIY Beauty Treatments!

       
Saturday, November 16th, 2013

Feed Your Skin with DIY Beauty Treatments

The foods you eat nourish your body, so naturally you try to incorporate the healthiest fare. When Thanksgiving rolls around, it’s all about indulging in the comforts of the season – those tried and true traditional dishes that have a nostalgic quality and make you feel happy. Autumnal ingredients like yams, cranberries, cinnamon and nutmeg aren’t just delicious, they’re also good for you, when prepared properly. Did you know that they’re also spectacular for your skin?

This Thanksgiving, don’t forget to feed your skin with some sustenance. Here are three DIY treatments made from the tastiest festive ingredients:

Mashed Potato Mask
It seems as if mashed potatoes can cure anything, and they’re a comforting remedy for your complexion, too. If you’re pursuing a solution for your puffy eyes, battling frequent breakouts, or attempting to diminish dark circles or fine lines, try making a mask infused with this classic dish. All you need are some prepared mashed potatoes – it doesn’t matter how they’re seasoned.

Opt for organic potatoes so you can avoid harmful pesticides. If you have especially dry skin, consider adding a bit of olive oil to your potatoes for extra moisture. However, those that are looking to alleviate acne should mix up a batch with minimal ingredients.

Smooth the potatoes over clean skin and leave on for 15 minutes. After rinsing off, follow up with a moisturizer.

Squash foot soak
Are you feet feeling parched? With the temperatures dropping and the air getting dryer, it’s common to see some flakes. Fortunately, butternut squash boasts a high vitamin E content, which when combined with the lactic acid in milk and nourishing properties of oil, can slough off dead skin and repair cracks.

Simply mash up one large cooked squash and combine it with 3 cups of whole milk and 2 cups of either safflower or vegetable oil. Put the mixture in a tub that can comfortably fit your feet, and submerge them in the solution for 30 minutes. Rinse them off, then slip on some cozy socks to trap in moisture.

Sweet potato conditioner
Your hair needs a detox once in a while, too. Switch out your normal conditioner for this sweet potato concoction, which can get rid of product buildup and help to prevent pesky flyaways from the dry static-filled air.

Start by cutting a cooked sweet potato in half and mashing it up. Then, add 3 tablespoons of honey and 1/4 cup plain yogurt. Massage it onto clean, damp hair and don a shower cap to seal in the solution, allowing it to absorb more effectively. After 20 minutes, rinse out the conditioner and voilá: smoother strands.

Pointers for a perfect complexion

       
Thursday, November 7th, 2013

Pointers for a perfect complexion

No matter who you are, blemish-free skin is always a top beauty priority. Still, certain lifestyle factors or habits can get in the way of a clear complexion.

Whether your type is oily, dry or combination, there are certain strategies and solutions that can be invaluable in your efforts to achieve a flawless face. Here are some helpful hints:

Detox your diet
Cleansing doesn't have to involve an all-liquid diet, but it does mean you'll need to get rid of certain unhealthy fare and replace it with more nutritional foods. The fact is, what you eat can have a major impact on your skin, so it's important to feed your body the right nutrients to make sure your skin cells can regenerate properly for a rejuvenated and radiant appearance. 

Meagen McCusker, associate professor of dermatology at the University of Connecticut Health Center, explained to The Washington Post that it's best to avoid refined sugars and high fructose corn syrup, which can promote inflammation. Not only that, but she noted that sugar also damages cell membranes and destroys collagen, which is the protein that keeps skin looking supple and taut.

Los Angeles-based dermatologist Jessica Wu told Women's Health magazine that dairy products actually fuel your oil glands, thus exacerbating breakouts.

So what should you be noshing on? Alan Dattner, a New York dermatologist, told the news outlet that nuts and wild salmon offer the essential omega-3 fatty acids that promote healthy skin. He also recommended incorporating fish oil and flaxseed into your diet for the same benefits.

It goes without saying that hydration is important for overall health, but it's also crucial for your complexion. Aim to drink eight glasses a day to flush out impurities that can make your skin look dull.

Be a clean freak
If you want to keep blemishes at bay, you have to wash your face regularly – no excuses. That means using a cleanser that can regulate oil when you wake up and before you go to bed, as well as after a sweaty gym session. Don't wash your face more frequently than that, though, or you could actually dry out your skin and cause oil glands to go into overdrive. You'll also need to reach for a makeup remover at the end of the day to avoid acne. Breakout-prone skin needs moisturizer, too, so reach for an oil-free formula, which will boost hydration levels without clogging pores or leaving a greasy residue.

Cleanliness is key for other aspects of your life as well – like your makeup brushes. If you don't wash them, the bacteria and dirt that builds up in the bristles could end up back in your pores. So remember to massage a bit of facial cleanser and warm water into them once a week, then lay them flat to dry.

Women's Health noted that smartphones are filled with germs, which can land on your face every time you put one to your ear. Keep antibacterial wipes on hand to prevent your chatting from compromising your complexion.

TLC
Most importantly, be kind to your skin to avoid the angry red bumps.

Exfoliate once a week to facilitate cell turnover and slough off dead skin and debris that can clog pores. Be gentle with your application, though – an ideal product that contains natural exfoliants, like alpha-hydroxy or glycolic acids, will do the work for you.

When it comes to your nighttime skin routine, reach for a treatment that contains calming ingredients, like aloe vera or chamomile.

Whatever you do, don't stress. Cortisol, one of the primary stress hormones, is directly related to oil production – so it's important to relax to minimize acne. Whether it's taking a morning yoga class or a warm bath at night, simple soothing acts will also keep your skin from freaking out.

Quick skin firming tips

       
Tuesday, October 29th, 2013

Quick skin firming tips

Regardless of your habits or genetics, signs of aging are inevitable. While it’s natural for skin to start to sag over time, there are ways to keep it looking supple. Follow these simple tips to defy gravity and give your complexion a lift:

Your ultimate nighttime skin routine

       
Tuesday, October 22nd, 2013

Your ultimate nighttime skin routine

There’s a reason it’s called beauty rest: The hours between your head hitting the pillow and your alarm going off are crucial for your skin to repair itself. Skin cells regenerate, toxins are released through your pores and, by morning, your complexion is rejuvenated.

While it’s inarguably important to get enough sleep, you also need to consider your nighttime skin regimen. Products that you apply before you catch some Z’s have the ability to seep even deeper into your skin while you snooze. So follow these steps before you hit the hay and you’ll wake up with that sought-after natural glow:

Clean surface
First thing’s first: You need to wipe away your cosmetics with a proper makeup remover. If you wear waterproof eyeliner or mascara, you’ll need an especially potent solution.

It sounds like a no-brainer, but it’s critical to wash the dirt and oils off your face before bedtime to avoid clogged pores and breakouts. Not only that, but clearing your face of any impurities enables your moisturizer to absorb more effectively. If your skin is especially dry, look for an oil-based or creamy cleanser that can help to maintain moisture. The being TRUE Restoring Deep Cleanser is formulated with gamma linolenic fatty acids, which restore lipid balance and lock in hydration for supple, smooth skin.

Remember to rinse with cool to lukewarm water instead of hot, which could promote dryness as well as a feelings of tightness. Oily skin types should look for a gel cleanser with ingredients that can help to control oil production overnight. Then follow with a clarifying toner to ensure that any traces of oil or dirt are removed.

Twice a week, all skin types should use an exfoliator after washing, unless the cleanser has one built in. Scrubbing away dead cells promotes turnover, meaning a renewed, radiant complexion.

Wage war on wrinkles
If you’re fighting the effects of aging, your nighttime skin routine will play a major role in your efforts. Dr. Melvin Elson, a clinical professor of dermatology at Vanderbilt School of Nursing, told Prevention magazine that because your body temperature rises while you sleep, anti-aging solutions have a better chance of working more effectively as they can sink deeper into the skin. Choose a powerful product that’s formulated with retinol, which has been proven to make fine lines, wrinkles and age spots fade away. Dr. Patricia Farris, an assistant clinical professor of dermatology at Tulane University School of Medicine, advised in Prevention applying retinoid treatments before bedtime as UV rays can compromise their effectiveness during the day.

Diminish dark circles
Shadows under your peepers make you look tired, even if you aren’t. So before bed, dab on an eye cream infused with vitamin K. According to Prevention, a study by Elson found that women who used one every night for three months saw their undereye circles recede by 33 percent. Exuviance Brightening Bionic Eye Creme not only has vitamin K, but also vitamin A, polyhydroxy acids and cooling cucumber extract to target puffiness and shadows as well as brighten the overall eye area.

Pump up the hydration
Moisturizer is a must in any skincare routine, but especially before you hit the hay. While you’re sleeping, your body temperature rises and you sweat out a significant amount of your skin’s water content. In winter, this is even more of an issue as the air is naturally dry. Dermatologist Dr. Murad told Beautylish that it’s crucial to use a rich cream that has ultra-nourishing ingredients, like glycerin or shea butter, which act like a moisture magnet.

Post-exercise skincare tips

       
Thursday, October 10th, 2013

Post-exercise skincare tips

There’s nothing like a little exercise to give you a natural glow. As your heart rate rises, you sweat out impurities in your system and your blood circulation accelerates, making your skin radiant. However, a grueling session can lead to redness, blemishes and full-on breakouts if you don’t take proper care of your skin – especially if you’re wearing makeup.

Here are some post-workout tips to make sure your cardio doesn’t compromise your complexion:

Hands first
Before you even touch your face, you must clean your hands. In an interview with Teen Vogue magazine, Jessica Clark, lead aesthetician at Equinox in New York City, advised using an anti-bacterial soap and vigorously lathering your palms for a minimum of 20 seconds.

Banish bacteria
Removing bacteria and grime from your face is a key step for avoiding clogged pores. Beautylish explained that cleansing pads are helpful for preventing breakouts. If you’re in a rush, some products don’t even require water to swipe away dirt and oil. The ultra-convenient B. Kamins Chemist Anti-Blemish Pads are powerful enough to get rid of germs and bust both blemishes and blackheads, but gentle enough on irritable skin since they’re oil- and fragrance-free.

If you’re prone to breakouts on your back or chest, Clark recommended spraying witch hazel on those areas right after stepping out of the shower.

Get steamy
Steam rooms and saunas do more than just soothe sore muscles. Self magazine’s assistant beauty editor Runa Bhattacharya explained that steam naturally removes impurities from your skin and unclogs your pores while giving you a healthy flush. Steam rooms are better than saunas if you have especially dry skin, as they have far more humidity in the air than saunas. Additionally, steam can help to regulate the oil glands, which is helpful if you suffer from acne. Bhattacharya recommended drinking plenty of water afterward to rehydrate your body, which will translate to a dewy complexion. You should also use a proper moisturizer to keep your skin looking supple and feeling soft.

Cool down
Just as you need to bring your body temperature down after a workout, you may need to cool down your skin. Frugivore suggested making your own solution by putting cold green tea in a spray bottle. A quick spritz post-exercise will not only alleviate any redness, but will also infuse your skin with antioxidants for cell protection. GloMoist Hydration Mist by GloMinerals is formulated with calming chamomile extract, and can instantly boost your skin’s hydration.

Prepping your skin for the colder season

       
Wednesday, October 9th, 2013

Prepping your skin for the colder season

Winter is fast approaching, which means snowfall, hot cocoa, holiday parties and a lot of other excitement. However, the colder, dryer weather doesn’t bode as well for your beauty. Harsh conditions can be tough on your complexion, meaning you’ll need to take certain precautionary measures to prevent flakes, cracks and other skin problems.

Follow these tips and your face won’t be looking as bleak as the weather:

Use kinder cleansers
While you may have been using an aggressive cleanser in the summer months to manage sweat, humidity and excess oil, it might be time to ease up on these solutions as the climate changes. Erica Glaub, Los Angeles-based makeup artist, explained to Shape magazine that gentler oil-based or milk cleansers and soaps are best for washing away impurities without completely stripping your skin of moisture.

Upgrade your moisturizer
Just as you transition your wardrobe to more substantial fabrics, you’ll also need to switch out your moisturizer for a heavy-duty cream. Dr. Deborah Sarnoff, a dermatologist at the North Shore-LIJ Health System in Greenvale, N.Y., told LiveScience that a richer product will have more natural oils. She also advised applying a night treatment for some deep hydration while you sleep. Glaub noted that optimal contents for your go-to winter cream are shea butter, almond oil, olive oil and grapeseed oil. Jojoba oil, which helps to balance your skin and accelerate cell repair, is also a key rejuvenating ingredient.

Did you know that honey is also a natural source of hydration? Try rubbing some into your elbows, knee caps or other parched areas, then rinsing.

Adjust your shower
While it’s tempting to take a hot shower in the winter months, doing so can seriously dry out your skin. That doesn’t mean you have to shiver your way through a cold shower - Glaub stressed that even lukewarm water is better. If you can’t bear to turn down the temperature, bathe for a shorter amount of time. When you get out, pat your skin dry instead of rubbing it with a towel and immediately apply moisturizer all over.

Exfoliate every week
It’s imperative to exfoliate in the winter, as sloughing off dead skin cells will allow your skin to absorb moisturizers and creams more effectively. Avoid products with abrasive chemicals or beads, which can irritate your skin, especially if it’s on the sensitive side.

Remember sunscreen
Just because the sun’s presence isn’t as strong in the winter doesn’t give you permission to neglect protection from UV rays completely. Sarnoff suggested looking for a moisturizer with at least SPF 15, or 30 if you’re outside more often.

How stress is sabotaging your beauty

       
Tuesday, October 1st, 2013

How stress is sabotaging your beauty

There are obvious reasons to avoid stress, as it can do some serious damage to your body. Did you know that it affects your appearance as well?

Between work deadlines, social obligations, paying bills and taking care of other responsibilities, sometimes it’s inevitable to feel overwhelmed. However, you might want to consider ways to keep your calm once you realize the potential impact on your complexion. Here are just a few ways that stress is sabotaging your skin, hair and nails:

Wrinkles
It’s no secret that stress can affect mood and energy levels, but it also makes you look olde. Daily Makeover explained that when you’re under a lot of pressure, your body continually churns out cortisol, a hormone that can break down collagen – not to mention also make you gain weight. When your cortisol levels are high, it’s more difficult for the skin to reproduce elastin and repair damage, leading to faster formation of wrinkles. Dr. Doris Day told Woman’s Day that it can be helpful during a particularly stressful day to stop and take a deep breath, thereby relaxing the muscles in your face to prevent fine lines.

Puffy eyes
One of the major negative effects of stress is that it can disrupt your sleep, and as a result, you end up with tired, puffy eyes. Daily Makeover noted that when you don’t get the deep sleep you need, your body is unable to rid itself of excess liquids. Therefore, that fluid ends up settling in the undereye tissue, causing dark circles and bags. It’s crucial to get an adequate amount of shuteye, but when you still need some extra help, use a moisturizing eye cream and a yellow-based concealer to fake an awake look.

Breakouts
Unfortunately, you’re also more likely to get pesky blemishes and breakouts when you’re tense, which can be frustrating and exacerbate the problem. According to She Knows, one of the other effects of a spike in cortisol is increased oil production and an inability to control inflammation. Therefore, you’re a lot more likely to see redness and clogged pores. Skincare expert Lavinia Borcau recommended looking for cleansers and toners that are formulated with green tea or chamomile, both natural anti-inflammatories.

Dry skin
If your skin is looking flaky and feeling dry, stress might be the cause. Borcau told She Knows that when you’re especially strained, your skin can’t hold moisture as effectively. She suggested using a rich cream that contains shea butter and avocado oil. Not only will your complexion feel softer, but these ingredients can also act as a barrier from irritants, free radicals and bacteria in the environment.

Damaged nails
Your digits are also dealing with negative impacts when you’re under pressure – and not just because you might be nervously biting your fingernails. Dr. Flor Mayoral, dermatologist and clinical instructor from University of Miami’s Miller School of Medicine in Miami, Fla., said that many people make a habit of pressing their fingers over their thumb nail, leading to a raised ridge in the center. On top of that, your nails may become weaker, peel or even begin to show white horizontal lines. When they’re looking particularly brittle, nix the lacquer for a week and brush on a strengthening treatment.

Hair loss
Is your hair starting to shed? Daily makeover explained that hair loss is another issue that can be caused by anxiety. Your hair follicles immediately go from a growth phase to a resting one. Dr. Mayoral noted that the “fall-out” phase that follows typically lasts for up to three months after a stressful time, and it can take six to nine months for the hair to re-grow. In the meantime, switch to a shampoo that can energize your scalp and a nourishing, thickening conditioner.