Skin

The Benefits of Microdermabrasion

Female model with exfoliated skin.

If you’ve never heard of Microdermabrasion, it is an amazing machine that can help to smooth out fine lines and wrinkles, increase the production of collagen and elastin, smooth out and retexture the skin, and help to diminish sun spots, scarring, and other discolorations. This machine creates a mechanical exfoliation using small crystals as well as vacuum suction. The vacuum sucks the skin up while the crystals work to exfoliate dead skin cells and imperfections.

Exfoliation is important for all skin types, including the most healthy of skins, to ensure the process of cell turnover. As we age, the rate of our cell turnover—or the amount of time it takes new skin cells to reach the surface and replace the old, dead ones—becomes slower and slower. For this reason, we all need a little help with desquamating the old skin cells. Microdermabrasion is an excellent way to slough off those dead skin cells to reveal a more polished and lively skin tone.

Another benefit of this treatment, in comparison to other forms of deeper exfoliation such as chemical peels, is that there is relatively no downtime. You can leave the spa the same day with a glowing and fresh complexion.

These treatments can be done alone, or in conjunction to an anti-aging, skin brightening, or deep cleansing facial. It is also extremely beneficial when compared with a gentle peel, to really stimulate cell turnover, as well as to decrease pigmentation and sun damage. In addition, for desirable results, it is necessary to have more than one treatment. Microdermabrasion is a progressive treatment, requiring anywhere from two to twelve treatments to see the desired change in your skin.

Check out your local spa scene to see which spas offers this amazing service.

There are a few things to consider to make sure your treatment goes off without a hitch:

  • Make sure your treatment is followed up with some kind of hydrating product. For full facials, a nice hydrating mask is perfect following microdermabrasion, as exfoliated skin can drink up all the nutrients of the mask. For shorter services, a hydrating serum or rich moisturizer can do the trick.
  • It is also crucial that a good sunscreen be applied following your service, as exfoliated skin is more susceptible to sun damage. Aim for at least an SPF of 30, but SPF 50 is ideal.
  • Furthermore, as one of the goals of this treatment is to help to reduce sun damage, it might be a good idea to avoid prolonged time in the sun for a few days.

Five Things You Should Know Before Your First Brazilian

Brazilian Wax Bikini Area

Brazilian waxing has definitely become the newest craze in the beauty industry. In fact, it is becoming a regular routine for women, who simply like to remain bare! If you have never been waxed before and are thinking of taking the plunge, there are definitely some things you should know before going in for your treatment. As someone who worked at a waxing salon for over a year, there are a few things that I noticed from clients who were new to waxing; had they had a little bit of information, their first time would have gone a little bit ‘smoother.’ Here are five tips that you should know before getting your first Brazilian wax.

  1. If you are a shaver, you have to give your hair adequate time to grow out before your first Brazilian wax. Many clients transitioning from shaving to waxing do not know that they cannot shave before waxing. Your hair must be at least as long as a grain of rice in order to wax, and often times you will not get a clean wax if you have shaved the week before, because your hair will be on different growth cycles. In addition, the short coarse hair, due to shaving, may cause the experience to be a bit more painful. To ensure a more flawless and easy wax, let your hair grow out as long as possible first.
  2. Some estheticians do not give their clients a rulebook for the delicate twenty-four hours after having a Brazilian wax. Because you have removed the hair from the follicle, and did some light exfoliation, the open hair follicle is susceptible to bacterial invasion. Typically it takes about twenty-four hours for the follicle to close up again. So during that time period, avoid steam rooms, taking hot baths, and hot yoga. These types of environment create the perfect breeding ground for bacteria. On a side note, a lot of clients who have had bacterial infections assume that it is the spa’s fault for using contaminated wax when, more likely, that is not the case. We all carry various strains of bacteria on our body, including staphylococci, the bacteria responsible for staph infections. Bacteria cannot penetrate solid, intact skin so normally our body is not in danger of infection. After waxing however, the skin is more vulnerable to this bacteria, so this advice is particularly important. In addition, avoid sexual activity for twenty-four hours, as this is a very easy way to spread bacteria. It may be tempting to show off your clean wax, but give it a day to heal up!
  3. Exfoliation in between waxing sessions is key to ensure you do not get ingrown hairs. When shaving, ingrown hairs are not as big of an issue because the hair is not being removed from the root, it is simply be shortened. So there is still an open pathway for that hair to grow back in. With waxing, the hair is being completely removed from the follicle, so sometimes the new hair gets trapped underneath the skin, which can cause an infection or inflammation. The way to prevent this is to exfoliate and remove dead skin cells. About two days after your wax, it is okay to begin exfoliating the area. You may use a scrub in the shower, or scrubby gloves—making sure to clean the gloves after each use to avoid bacteria—or you can use an exfoliating solution with something like salicylic, lactic, or glycolic acid to digest dead skin cells. Exfoliating will help your bikini area remain smooth and healthy.
  4. Another new concept for people transitioning from shaving to waxing is the idea of letting the hair grow in between waxing. The typical time period between Brazilian maintenance is four to six weeks, but that can differ depending on your growth cycle, which may be a little messed up due to shaving. Between those four to six weeks, let your hair grow back in to ensure a nice clean wax. It may be an adjustment for some, but you will get used to the waxing cycle and come to love it!
  5. Lastly, it might be helpful to take a Tylenol or ibuprofen about thirty minutes before your first waxing appointment. This well help to ease the pain of the first time wax, as well as help to stop inflammation. Also remember to breathe and try to relax!

Aveda’s Perfecting Plant Peel

Aveda Product - Perfecting Plant PeelI love Aveda’s Perfecting Plant Peel, and every client I do this on absolutely loves the way their skin looks and feels immediately after. Powered by plants, Aveda’s Perfecting Plant Peel system performs like 30% glycol without the redness and irritation. It is a facial masque which actively smoothes with instant exfoliation and radiance. This can be performed as a standalone 30 minute service or an add on to our signature facials. Your skin will have an amazing glow immediately after the service.

I believe you get the full plant peel when used with the steamer. I like to apply the plant peel and let the client sit under steam for about seven minutes, while I do a hand/arm massage. When the seven minutes are up, I spray the activating spray over the face and massage it in so it warms up. I like to combine this with the hydrating mask mixed with a little Outer Peace Cooling Masque to cool and hydrate the skin after. When the client looks in the mirror they immediately notice smaller pores and a glowing face. I always get excited to see the look on their face when they see their skin. If you feel the client could benefit from this peel, you should always recommend and explain the amazing immediate results they will get. It is an extra $10.00 on top of the facial price, but I promise it is worth it.

Is Your Sunscreen Safe?

It’s almost spring and summer will be right around the corner. The one thing we always hear during the spring and summer months is “Wear Sunscreen!” Ok, we know the the risks of not wearing sunscreen but do we know the risks of wearing it? Everyone thinks that sunscreen is all upside with no downsides. Unfortunately, sunscreen comes with many risks.

Most store-bought sunscreens contain harsh cancer-causing chemicals that cause aging and damage to your skin. For instance some of the most well-known and widely-used sunscreen in the U.S. have some chemical ingredients that may be extremely harmful and could cause serious problems. What are the ingredients that may be harmful? There are many, but here is a list of the ingredients that I try to avoid:

  • Oxybenzone: This is a chemical penetration enhancer that provokes a reaction when exposed to the sun’s UV rays. When absorbed into the skin, it can provoke an eczema-like reaction that sometimes spreads beyond the exposed area and can stay on your skin well beyond your time in the sun.

  • Octinoxate: One of the most common ingredients in sunscreen, it helps other chemicals to absorb into the skin. It can disrupt hormone balance when mixed with water—perhaps by jumping into a pool while wearing sunscreen. It can also produce free radicals which can damage your skin and cell tissues.

  • Retinyl Palmitate: A derivative of vitamin A, Retinyl Palmitate is supposed to improve the sunscreens performance against UV damage but actually, when exposed to the sun, it can break down and create free radicals that damage cells and DNA, and possibly cause cancer.

  • Paraben Preservatives: Parabens are in many products and could be very harmful. They can cause allergic reactions, hormone disruption, and are suspected to be a major factor in breast cancer.

Now that you know that there are risks, please make sure to look at the ingredients to make sure the product is safe for you and your loved ones. The Environmental Working Group does an annual study of sunscreens and they provide a list of healthy sunscreens and brands that you can research yourself. They also provide a breakdown of the ingredients of the various products and why they are safe for you.

Get out there and enjoy these glorious seasons, but use a safe and effective sunscreen so you can fully enjoy the sun without hurting yourself or your skin.

Acne is a Map to Your Body’s Systems

No one likes to break out. There are many different reasons why we breakout and what can be causing it. People can breakout in the adolescent years or as an adult and if you are really unlucky you might breakout in both.

Some causes of Acne are:

  1. Hormone Changes
  2. High Stress Levels
  3. Diet
  4. Products and Cosmetics
  5. Medications
  6. Environmental Factors
  7. Not Having Proper Cleansing Habits

If you want to know why you are breaking out, simply start by taking a look in the mirror. Where our acne presents itself can say a lot about its root cause. After doing some research, here are some locations of breakouts and what they can mean.

  • Forehead: Digestive System and Bladder

    In order to improve acne in this area, you may need to consider a diet change or an increase in your intake of water. Consider cutting back on processed foods-that can really help clear up this area.

  • In Between the Eyebrows: Liver

    An allergy often manifests itself as acne in between the eyebrows. Consider a detox of sorts. Cut down on your alcohol consumption, eat lighter foods, and consider any foods to which you may have developed an allergy (such as dairy).

  • Temples and Ears: Kidneys

    This is a quick fix: cut down on coffee, soda, and other sugary beverages, and drink pure water instead. Hydrate your body and you should see a significant decrease in acne around your eyes.

  • Nose: Heart

    Acne on your nose could mean high blood pressure or high cholesterol. Try cutting back on red meat and increase your intake of foods with Omega 3’s like avocado and fish. Additionally, because your nose is so porous, make sure that your makeup isn’t expired or try a different kind if you don’t see better results.

  • Cheeks: Respiratory System

    Acne in this area usually also points to allergies. If allergies aren’t the culprit, consider keeping your body at a neutral temperature rather than allowing it to overheat. Avoid spicy foods and add more green veggies to your diet.

  • Outside or Corners of the Mouth: Hormones

    This zone is difficult to eradicate because hormones can be hard to control. However, getting enough ZZZ’s at night, keeping skin clean and moisturized, and a balanced diet can help. Sometimes birth control can be the cause as well.

  • Chin: Stomach

    Because this area is associated with the stomach, increasing the amount of fiber in your diet, drinking more water, and generally detoxing your body may help clear up this area.

In truth, you’re fighting your acne from the inside out! If your issue is truly internal, no amount of creams and cleansers will clear up your face anyway. The right skin care routine does make a big difference, but it won’t be a quick fix. Clearing up adult acne will take time, dedication, and lifestyle changes.

4 Benefits of Bergamot Oil

There are a lot of essential oils out there. One of my favorites is bergamot. There are so many benefits from using bergamot oil in your everyday light. Bergamot has a very sweet smell and it is very citrusy. It’s also very refreshing. I love putting it on after I get out of the shower or bathtub. So what can Bergamot oils do for you?

1) Bergamot is a natural anti-depressant and stimulant. Bergamot creates a feeling of freshness and joy and energy. In cases of depression it helps with sadness by improving blood flow and circulation. The stimulations also increases the secretions of digestive juices, biles, and insulin by basically acting as a natural digestion aider.

2) The oil is also known to be an antibiotic and disinfectant. Bergamot inhibits the growth of germs and virus and fungi. The oil also prevents infections including those on the skin. Bergamot also reduces the feeling of pain in the body. Another one of the great qualities of bergamot is that it can reduce nervous tension and it can treat ailments such associated with stress such as sleepiness and high blood pressure.

3) The oil is also a cicatirsant which means it aids in pigmentation issues and leaves your skin tone attractive and even in tone. You can use is on the after effects on long term acne post inflammatory hyper pigmentation.

4) Bergamot is also a popular as a natural deodorant. You have to be careful with un-natural deodorants because the lymph nodes in your under arms can easily absorb the toxins and fillers and nasty crud in those drug store brands. Nothing to worry about when bergamot is absorbed by the body! You get all the benefits from the oil flowing around in your body and you will smell great and natural!

A Few Words of Caution: Bergamot oil must be protected from sunlight, because bergaptene, one of its components, becomes poisonous if exposed to sunlight. That is why the oil should always be stored in dark bottles in dark places. Exposure to sunlight should even be avoided after it is applied or rubbed onto the skin, at least until it absorbs into your skin

9 Benefits of Patchouli Oil

TZtIkLag5PsLv2JY2nQSRlObBCaceLfLosQIWZ6pKJcPatchouli oil is my favorite of all the essential oils. The scent is the most relaxing thing in the world to me. I really enjoy rubbing it into my scarf so I can enjoy the scent all day. The best and most common benefit of patchouli oil is that it relieves stress! It is known to help with anxiety and also enhance the senses. Regular use of patchouli oil will keep you peaceful and calm. Here are some of the benefits to this oil:

1) Patchoulis fragrance also appeals to the soul and touches the mind directly. You will often find it used in perfumes and incenses.
2) The oil can also be used for massages and aromatherapy. Patchouli oil massages stimulate and relax the mind and relax the nerves.
3) Patchouli can really help people with depression.
4) Patchouli also has many healing properties.
5) The oil can help prevent infections from getting worse.
6) It is also known to have helped people with dermatitis and eczema and psoriasis.
7) The oil also has anti- aging properties.
8) The oil helps you looking young and healthy!
9) Also patchouli has been known to help acne scarring, dry skin and wrinkles.

Overall, my favorite thing about the oil has to be the way it makes me feel after I have put it on. It takes me to my favorite happy place, somewhere in the hills around my house surrounded by a redwoods. I love that the scent feels somewhat earthy and fresh. There are so many different essential oils and I feel there is one for everyone. There is something extremely spiritual about smelling and choosing an essential oil. The oil you choose will no doubt become a part apart of your life.

Here is a little more history on Patchouli oil:

Patchouli has been around for literally ages. Over the years people have discovered many uses of the oil, ranging from medical uses to cosmetics. The popularity of patchouli reached its peak during the late 1960’s and early 1970’s. Patchouli originates from southeast Asia and the herb grows wild in Sumatra and Java at an altitude of 3,000 feet. However, the cultivation of the herb is extensive in lower tropical jungles. The plant grows to be three feet tall and has a very strong stem with little hairy leaves. To extract the oil the plant is harvested two times a year, sometimes three. The best oil quality is considered to extracted during the rainy season. The process of the extraction involves hand picking the leaves, bailing the leaves, and then followed by draining in the shade. Afterwards, a few days of fermentation is needed. Then the oil is extraxted through steam disillation process. Patchouli is one of the rare essential oils that actually gets better with age! As the oil ages into a deep amber from a light yellow, the fragrance becomes smoother and richer. Patchouli over the years has been used for insect repellant as well as in cosmetics.

4 Types of Honey Masks to Try at Home

Honey masks are not only amazing for your skin but also all natural! Here are four different types of honey masks to try with different skin types :

1- Honey face mask for acne-prone skin

•3 teaspoons raw honey

•1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon

Mix honey and cinnamon together, and apply to your face. Leave the mask on for 10-30 minutes. The antibacterial properties of both honey and cinnamon are especially beneficial for acne-prone skin.

2- Honey face mask for dry skin

•1 teaspoon mashed avocado

•1 teaspoon plain whole milk yogurt

•1 teaspoon honey

Mix ingredients in a small bowl until smooth. Spread the mixture over your face and let it sit for 20-30 minutes before washing it off. The fats in the avocado and whole milk yogurt are deeply moisturizing to the skin, while the lactic acid in the yogurt smooths your skin, refines pores, and stimulates collagen production.

3- Honey mask for sensitive skin

•2 teaspoon of raw honey

•1 teaspoon aloe Vera gel

Stir the aloe and honey together and apply over your face. Leave it on for about 10-20 minutes. Aloe soothes inflammation and calms your skin, perfect for those with sensitive, irritated skin.

4- Honey mask for scars and dark spots

•2 teaspoon of raw honey

•1/2 teaspoon lemon juice

Combine the lemon juice and honey, and apply the mixture to your face. Allow it to sit for 20-30 minutes. Lemon juice exfoliates your skin, brightens dark spots and fades scars. Your skin will feel smooth and soft right away, but it may take a few applications to notice a real difference in scars and spots.

The Many Uses of Lavender

0TzSpSkilDZ-PpqJuBRggEjk4-f4okY-njg60JtsZiIThis beautifully-scented herb has been used since ancient times and still remains one of the most loved and revered of all essential oils.

Aromatherapists feel that lavender essential oil is the most versatile because of its many healing properties and considers it one of the best essential oils to have on hand.

Lavender calms anxiety and provides natural stress relief.

Throughout history, people have turned to lavender for all kinds of ailments including acne treatment, skin disorders, digestive complaints, pain relief, and to prevent and treat infections.

LAVENDER HAS BEEN USED FOR:

• Pain relief

• Headaches and migraines

• Muscle aches and sprains

• Menstrual cramps

• Allergies

• Asthma

• Relaxation

• Anxiety

• Depression

• Inducing sleep

• Digestive distress, gas and colic

• Inflammation

• Burns

• Insect bites

• Chicken Pox

• Acne treatment

• Dermatitis

• Insect repellant

• Dry skin

• Muscle relaxant

HOW TO USE LAVENDER ESSENTIAL OIL

Some options for using lavender essential oil are:

Mix 5 to 6 drops of Lavender essential oil to your bath water if you have dry skin.

Diffuse 10 to 12 drops of Lavender into the air during your workday for natural stress relief.

Add 2 drops of Lavender per ounce of your favorite lightly scented, unrefined organic oil (like almond oil or olive oil) for a body oil with all the benefits of lavender for improving your skin, relaxing your mind, warding off insects or helping you sleep.

The unrefined organic oil you choose acts as a “carrier oil” for lavender (or any essential oil, for that matter), which dilutes the oil and carries the beneficial properties into your skin.

4 Benefits from Lymphatic Massage

I have recently just learned to do the lymphatic massage. Not only did I learn how to give the massage, but I also learned how it works and how beneficial it is for the body. Lymphatic massage helps to remove the waste and detoxifies the body.

Lymphatic massage also helps with:

1) healing after surgery which regenerates the tissue to reduce scarring at surgical incision sites.

2) breast feeding because the lymph drainage massage can help to reduce the swelling of engorgement and ameliorate plugged ducts. Fixing these two problems can reduce soreness in the breasts and nipples, ultimately leading to better breastfeeding.

3) improved immune system. They state that lymph drainage massages can improve the function of the immune system and increase the production of antibodies that fight off infections. Lymph drainage massages can also reduce inflammation in the body that causes diseases such as arthritis.

4) relaxation- Lymph drainage massages can be especially relaxing because they can reduce pain levels in the body.

So not only our the benefits great for you but it also feels good!

Beauty and Art at Aveda

lScxstwxfLTdsxTKuWtji72xyFERrKPMAg7Qn8aYIRoWhile at an Aveda Concept Salon or an Aveda Institute, one can’t help but notice the allure of beauty and art all around. The Aveda style uniquely speaks of etheric images beckoning us to a moment of visual wellness.

Like a palette of nature’s colorful expressions, the subtle and bold vintage water color wash you from the moment you step in. You become excited and sun drenched. In other words, an experience at Aveda is an immersion into fine art.

As an Esti student I am often reminded that my education is not just about technique, application, and product knowledge. While those subjects set the foundation to build a life long professional career from, I believe the true essence of Aveda training and service is about creating art through bringing forth each guest’s individual beauty.

I have found that the “compliment sandwich” is a chance for me to share with my guests what makes them unique. To emphasize a person’s individual and personal assets, I sometimes mentally say to myself, “what makes this guest specifically beautiful?”

I have found that a sincere compliment really helps to ease a guest into their service. I believe this gives them a feeling of connection and lets the guest know that I see and I care about them.

A finishing touch of a lip or cheek color is another opportunity to introduce to the guest the Aveda allure, so when they step out of the experience center they feel as if they have experienced not only moments of wellness from their service but have participated in making the everyday into an expression of beauty and art.

4 Skin Types and the Products that Fit Them

Treatments for skin ranges due to the different skin types. Knowing your skin type will help determine the correct products and treatments necessary. There are only four different skin types: dry, oily, combination and normal.

Dry skin is characterized by small to no pores, superficial lines and minimal acne. Treatments for dry skin include humectant ingredients, and should include regular exfoliation. Dry skin can also be sensitive to certain products, ingredients and treatments. This means extra care needs to be taken when considering less abrasive products and treatments as to not irritate the skin.

Oily skin is characterized by larger pores, overly active sebaceous ducts, and acne prone. It is best for people with oily skin to use more soluble products such as salicylic acid, and should use gel or foam when choosing cleansers. Those with oily skin generally have lower pH levels, so it is best to find products that balance it. They should also wash regularly because of their higher predisposition to bacteria growth.

Combination skin is characterized by oily skin conditions in the forehead and nose region, and dryer condition on the cheeks and chin. It is the most common skin type, and is best to find products that balance it. Use a cream cleanser if you are going to use a salicylic acid treatment. Those with combination skin should choose between either stronger exfoliants or frequency of use.

Normal skin is neither oily nor dry. They have normal pore size and regular oil production. Product and treatments should be used to maintain the acid mantle because it is typically at ideal levels. Those with normal skin should be more concerned with maintaining, instead of trying to fix different levels through treatments and products. So one of the larger concerns for normal skin is irritating it through more harsh treatments when not needed.

Recalling My First Facial Client Experience

I was transitioning from the Esthetician intro phase to the alpha phase, and it couldn’t be scarier, even though I felt pretty prepared when I left the intro phase.

The first day of being an alpha, I already had a client. What do I do?! Suddenly everything I had learned the last ten weeks went out the window. Elemental Nature? What’s that? To add more worry and stress, I realized that my first booked client was a male client! All I’ve been working on were female faces; I’m not ready for this! I was completing psyching myself out. Nobody noticed I was a nut case. Nope, I was cool as a cucumber on the outside. Internally, I wanted to melt and die.

The time came, and a huge part of me hoped the client canceled for some reason, any reason…please! But of course, Life likes to see you squirm. I saw my client standing at 6 feet 2 inches and the size difference did not play into the intimidating factor at all…Luckily, he was super nice and I performed the facial like I would normally, except massaged downward in the direction of the facial hair growth. I’m pretty sure I may have forgotten a step or two, but you have to be like Dory and “just keep swimming!”

Before I knew it, the facial ended, and I was so relieved! Excitement came over me because I did it! And I didn’t fall flat on my face. It really is not as terrifying as you anticipate it to be. After the facial, I discussed some of the beneficial products for his skin, and he ended up purchasing all of them! I felt such a glee after finishing my first client’s facial.

A few tips I would share would be to follow the facial steps as best as you can. If you don’t remember a step, just keep moving and perform the steps you DO remember. The client doesn’t know if anything went wrong unless you start acting like it is. Secondly, make sure to apply pressure and check the pressure with your client during the massages. Nobody likes to be lightly touched when he/she knows they’re coming in for a facial or massage. Lastly, be warm and friendly to your guest regardless of how you’re feeling. Check your issues at the door and put a smile on your face when you greet your guest. Good luck!

8 Tips You Should Know Before Your Next Brazilian Wax

When I started the Esthetician program, one of the things I was looking forward to was learning how to wax, specifically a Brazilian wax. For those who don’t know, a Brazilian wax is when all the hair is removed in the pubic area, front and back. Here are some tips to ease anyone on having this service performed for the first time.

1) Even though it is possible, avoid having a Brazilian wax before or during your period due to pain sensitivity.

2) Let your hair grow to a ¼ inch in order for the wax to grab better.

3) Before the service, exfoliate the area to release any hairs trapped under a layer of dead skin cells.

4) If you would like to reduce the pain, you can take a pain reliever 45 minutes before your waxing appointment.

5) Remember to breathe and relax during the service, tensing up makes it worse.

6) Do not wear any tight clothing or do anything that will cause any friction or sweat in your waxed area for the next 24 hours.

7) After the first 48 hours, exfoliate your waxed area to avoid ingrown hairs

8) Don’t shave in between your Brazilian waxing services.

The Difference Between UVB and UVA Rays and Their Affects on your Skin

One of the biggest misconceptions about sunscreen is that it is only for the pool or beach. In fact a lot of you adults don’t incorporate it in their beauty regimen at all. The number one reason for again is from sun damage and it’s much easier to prevent now then correct the later.

People think that if they aren’t in direct sunlight then they don’t need to apply sunblock for the day. Unfortunately what they don’t understand is that we are exposed to sun rays directly and indirectly. Sun rays can reach you driving in your car, sitting inside work, or anywhere there can be windows.

Here are some facts about the sun rays:

There are both UVA and UVB that we are exposed to daily. UVA rays are called the “Aging Rays”. They are constantly present, no matter the season or the weather. If you think you can’t get sun damage on a cloudy day then think again. They are so powerful that they also penetrate some clothing and even glass.

Also UVA rays are the rays responsible for the signs of aging because they are able to penetrate much deeper into the surface of the skin, damaging the cells beneath. While people think their skin looks younger when it’s tan, the reality is each tan gives your skin irreversible damage, and you will see its damage later in life. When you think of UVA rays, think sun spots, leather skin and wrinkles!

UVB rays are the rays you can blame when you get a sunburn. Unlike UVA rays, these rays aren’t always the same strength year round. They are more prevalent in the summer months; however they are able to reflect off water or snow so it’s always important to protect yourself. UVB rays are responsible for causing most skin cancers.

Do yourself a favor and start protecting yourself with the proper sunscreen. People always think the higher the sunscreen number, the more protection they have, but that isn’t always the case. It’s good to choose a broad-spectrum sunscreen of 30 SPF that contains both UVA and UVB protection. UVA radiation is less powerful than UVB, but it penetrates deeper into the skin. Small daily doses of UVA causes long-term skin injury, even without signs of sunburn. UVA light is used in tanning booths.

Choosing to use a protection every day is the single most important thing you can do to prevent sun damage and skin cancer.

My Top Three Favorite Skin Care Products from Aveda

Everyone who has ever used Aveda knows that every ingredient in their products are natural, safe, and leaves you feeling beautiful.

Aveda oils smell delicious and also serve to improve your skin. After being enrolled in the Esthiology Program at the Cinta Aveda Institute and having months of practice on myself and others, these are some of my choices for their top products and why.

Botanicals Kinetics Exfoliant:

This is a non-abrasive liquid that helps exfoliate the surface cells for a smooth and clear complexion. I love how this product keeps my skin smooth without stripping it! To keep your skin looking fresh we all need to exfoliate more, so this is a great step to add to your beauty regimen.

Your skin will look softer, smoother, and more supple. BK Exfoliant is great for all skin types, and can be used one to two times a week after cleansing.

Intensive Hydrating Masque:

This is my favorite Masque with Aveda! Everyone needs to moisturize and sometimes just using creams are not enough. It’s a great way to pamper yourself in between facial visits, using it after traveling on a plane, or giving your skin more of an intensive boost of moisture. It contains Hyaluronic Acid in it that will smooth and plump your skin. It is more than 1,000 times more moisturizing then your regular moisturizer! Remember, when you hydrate your skin, you keep it looking young! This masque is also great for all skin types.

Beautifying Composition Oil:

Most people think that if you put oil on your skin you will break out. NOT true! Our skin is actually lipid-loving and if you properly moisturize with the proper oil, it can keep your skin balanced. Sometimes your skin can be too oily because the sebaceous glands are working overtime to send moisture to the acid mantle to balance out the PH level.

I like to apply it before I use my moisturizer as a chap stick all over my body. The Beautifying oil has a lovely aroma of rosemary and bergamot that I can smell all throughout my day.

How to Make a Papaya Refinement, Avocado Honey, and Lemon Mask

avocado_papaya (2)You never know what produce may be lying around your kitchen that can bring wonders to your skin. One of my Instructors informed me of the amazing benefits that Papaya has when you combine the seeds with apple cider vinegar. It can make an amazing refinement for the skin. I just happened to have a papaya in my kitchen and added it to my juice because it has great internal benefits. I tried the papaya refinement and followed with an avocado and honey mask and it left my skin feeling very soft and glowing.

Papaya is a great source of Vitamin A and helps in the removal of dead skin cells along with breaking down the inactive proteins. Papaya seeds like the fruit itself are high in proteolytic enzymes, which have wonderful medicinal values. Apple cider vinegar has innumerable healing and curative powers and is also antibacterial, antifungal and anti-inflammatory properties.

Here’s how to make the refinement and mask:

Ingredients:

1) 1/2 papaya

2) Papaya Seeds

3) 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar

4) 5 tbsp of water

Slice the papaya in half, scoop out pulp and seeds, add a couple of table spoons of apple cider vinegar and grind the refinement in a blender of your choice until it reaches a pasty or cream like consistency or a consistency that allows you to apply the refinement all over the skin (You can also include the peel of the papaya as it has some amazing benefits to the skin such as it is also rich in Alpha-Hydroxy Acid that offers great anti-aging benefits)

Apply for 25 minutes on your face and then rinse off. This will help with reducing all those unwanted pimples and inflammation. Follow with the Avocado and honey mask for hydration. Avocado is loaded with vitamin E, healthy fats and antioxidants to help keep the skin smooth; the lemon juice contains citric acid, which may help “brighten” the skin, and the honey helps brighten the skin and also thoroughly cleanse with natural antibacterial/antimicrobial properties to it.

Avocado and Honey Mask:

Ingredients

1) ½ Avocado

2) 2 tbsp honey

3) 1 tbsp lemon

Simply mash and combine all the ingredients in a small bowl and apply to your face. Be careful around your eyes (as with all products). Let the mask sit on your face for about 20 minutes. Rinse with warm water. Follow with your favorite moisturizer. (I Recommend the Aveda All sensitive moisturizer or Tourmaline Serum)

Try adding papaya to your juice or eating it, it makes an even bigger impact on your skin because you are treating the internal parts of your body. One step at a time while taking care of the external parts of our skin and incorporating a healthy diet will achieve greater results.

10 Veggies and Fruits to Juice for your Skin

juice (2)When you take a sip of a delicious glass of juice it can make you feel as if the world has stood still for a moment. At least that is how it feels for me. My father introduced me to juicing when I was kid and it was something I became fond of, until he started mixing greens into my juice. I sometimes couldn’t stand all the concoctions of strong fruits and veggies (example: ginger, beet, kale, grapefruit mixed in with apples, berries and bananas) because all I wanted was apple or orange juice. As I got older I started to realize how important all of those nutrients were and how beneficial those fruits and vegetables are for the body.

What we put into our bodies is just as important if not more than what we put topically onto our bodies. In my opinion juicing is a great way to get the nutrients not only your body needs but your skin needs too. I recently invested in a Ninja Bullet not too long ago and I am having a blast making different recipes for masks to treat my skin and for juicing and I must say I have noticed a significant difference. I have also been eating a much healthier diet and what I have learned is in order to achieve amazing skin you have to take into account the internal and external factors to get the results you want.

Listed Below are 10 of the best veggies and fruits to juice for your skin

1. Carrots are a powerhouse of antioxidants, vitamins and minerals.

2. Beets are one of the most effective cleansing vegetables available for your liver, and beet juice is even said to help regenerate damaged liver cells. In the long run, anyone looking for how to get perfect skin cannot ignore the importance of the liver. Drinking fresh beet juice mixed with other vegetable juices regularly is one of the simplest ways to heal this vital organ.

3. Celery juice is highly cleansing, alkalizing and detoxifying to your body. It is especially rich in silica, a trace mineral needed for beautiful skin and healthy hair and nails.

4. Kale is one of the most powerful vegetables around and definitely benefits your skin with its high levels of vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients.

5. Cucumber is an extremely hydrating, cooling and alkalizing vegetable for eliminating toxins. It is high in silica and other beneficial trace minerals for reducing inflammation and improving the softness of your skin and the strength of your hair and nails.

6. Pineapples are a sweet and delicious source of antioxidants like vitamin C for better skin. It’s important to juice pineapples with their cores as this part contains the enzyme bromelain which helps breakdown undigested proteins – a potential source of liver stress and skin problems.

7. Tomatoes are classed as a fruit and their juice is rich in the skin protecting antioxidant lycopene. Also highly beneficial for your heart, tomato juice is especially good to have before going out in the sun for long periods as it helps protect your skin from UV damage.

8. Papaya juice ( as I mentioned in my last blog ) is a tropical tasting shot of vitamin C, vitamin E, lycopene, beta-carotene and various minerals and micronutrients. Papayas also contain a similar digestive enzyme to pineapples called papain that assists in breaking down inflammatory foreign proteins. Highly recommended for soft and beautiful skin.

9. Lemon juice has many health benefits, including assisting digestion, detoxification and elimination, providing alkalizing minerals and antioxidant vitamin C and helping your liver to produce more bile to digest fats.

10. Apple is actually an extremely healthjuice (2)y fruit, high in antioxidant flavonoids like quercetin, kaempferol and myricetin.

These fruits and vegetables are not only beneficial for your skin’s appearance, but they also reduce the risk of skin cancer.

How CIDESCO Made Me a Better Esthetician

cidescologo (2)When I first enrolled in the Esthiology program here at CAI, I never thought I would one day be near my completion of CIDESCO. I had never considered this career path until a small introduction to the program piqued my interest. It goes to say, CIDESCO has given me far more than what I thought I was ever capable of learning.

Although I believed that the health of skin was important, I didn’t quite realize how all of your body’s cells–and not just your skin cells–individually function and work together to create one big functioning unit. Turns out, that your skin is actually a giant billboard advertising the overall health of a person, not just the external damage that may be done to the skin. Basically, instead of looking only at the body’s outward appearance, I have been able to explore my clients’ lifestyles and pinpoint why their skin shows signs of distress, and how to correct conditions through choosing the correct ingredients and suggesting small changes.

I also never thought that I would want to specialize in the field of skin care. I first wanted to have a hand in everything-mMakeup, facials, and waxing- however I simply could not choose. I thought I wanted to be a ‘well-rounded’ esthetician who knew something about everything. This, as my educator Maria has put it, is being ‘a jack of all trades, and a master of none.’ I have certainly gone through a process and change of direction with my initial career goals, but I realized that I have learned exactly what I needed to in order to get me there.

Looking back at this roller coaster ride, that is CIDESCO, I have zero regrets. I doubt I would have gone as far as I have without the education, experience, and knowledge that CIDESCO has given me. The choice I made to enroll at Cinta Aveda has certainly been rewarding, and also career-wise, life changing.

What You Don’t Know About Salicylic Acid

220pxfountainspringswintergreen (2)The other day I decided to find out more information about salicylic acid. I was curious about what this popular ingredient actually does. As Esti students we learned that salicylic acid is contra indicated for pregnant women and those with sensitive skin issues. Salicylic acid is mostly found as a featured ingredient in acne care as in the Aveda Outer Peace line and in one of my favorites, the Aveda Liquid Exfolient.

So what is Salicylic acid? Salicylic acid is a peeling agent that causes exfoliation or shedding of the outer layer of skin. Salicylic acid is also used topically in the treatment of acne, dandruff, corns, and warts.

As a beta hydroxy acid (BHA), it has the ability to penetrate into the pore (AHAs do not), so it can exfoliate inside the pore as well as on the surface of the skin, making it effective for reducing blemishes, including blackheads and whiteheads. Salicylic acid has shown an ability to improve skin thickness, barrier functions, and collagen production, it also functions as an anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial.

Most salicylic acid on the market today is synthesized from petroleum derivatives, traditionally salicylic acid has been derived from white willow bark or wintergreen. Aveda’s salicylic acid is naturally derived from wintergreen (methyl salicylate). The partridge berry, or Teaberry, was used by the American Indians for pain and fever. In the nineteenth century wintergreen was considered a cure-all.