Skin

Natural Remedies

Some of the most cost effective and naturally beneficial skin care for all skin types can be made from ingredients you can typically find in your own pantry. Some of my favorites include:

Skin Care for Dry Skin

  • 1 banana, mashed
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • ¼ cup plain yogurt

Leave this combination on for 20 minutes and rinse with cool water.

A Firming Toner for Aging Skin

  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 2 cups purified water

Paint this mixture onto your face and neck and let dry.

A Calming Milk Mask for Rosacea or Red, Irritated Skin

  • Vitamin D milk
  • 2-3 drops rose oil, optional

Soaking a clean cloth the milk until fully saturated. Optionally, add in rose oil for added aroma and more calming effects. Wring out the cloth lightly, being careful not to remove too much of the milk. Lay the cloth over your face and let it sit for 10-15 minutes. Rinse your face with cool water.

Brightening for Oily Skin

  • ¼ teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • A few drops honey
  • ¼ cup plain yogurt
  • ½ a small lemon, juiced

Mix together the ingredients and leave on the skin for 15-20 minutes. Then rinse face with cool water.

Brightening for Dry Skin

  • ¼ teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • A few drops honey
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil, almond oil, or olive oil

Mix together the ingredients and leave on the skin for 15-20 minutes. Then rinse face with cool water.

A Gentle Exfoliant

  • ½ cup hot water
  • ⅓ cup oatmeal
  • 2 tablespoons plain yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 small egg

Mix ingredients together. Apply a thin layer to the face with a brush, and let it sit for 10-15 minutes. Rinse with warm water, moving your hands in circular motions to gently exfoliate. Use this mask once a week to remove dead surface cells.

The History of Exfoliation

Exfoliation is the process of removing the dead skin cells from the surface of the skin through either chemical or mechanical methods.

Mechanical exfoliation, the process of exfoliating the skin by hand by scrubbing with something abrasive, has been practiced all over the world and throughout history. American Indians used dried corncobs. The people of the Comanche tribe would use sand from the bottom of a river bed to scrub the skin. Polynesian people would use crushed sea shells.

Mechanical exfoliation was practiced in ancient Egypt where they employed a variety of methods. Pumice stones were popular abrasives as well as other minerals such as alabaster particles, and scrubs made from sand and the aloe vera plant.

Exfoliation through chemical means, as practiced today, is a science constantly updated with new technology and ingredients. But the practice itself also has a long history dating back to ancient Egypt when sour milk, which contains lactic acid, was used as a chemical exfoliant. Cleopatra is famously said to have frequently bathed in it.

In the Middle Ages, people commonly used old wine for its exfoliation properties. Old wine was effective because of its tartaric acid content. Various natural remedies of these kinds, containing naturally occurring levels of alpha hydroxyl acids, were the norm until the late 1800s. That’s when German dermatologist Paul Gerson Unna began scientifically formulating the earliest forms of chemical peels. His pioneering research with salicylic acid is still used today.

In the early 20th century, dermatologists began to experiment with phenols in chemical exfoliation. That remained popular through most of the 20th century.

Natural Cleanser with a Twist

Your face is the first thing people see when they look at you. Whether you are forty, twenty four, or fourteen, you don’t want to walk around with acne on your face. I have pimples and blackheads sometimes, so I know that when someone looks at me, they are thinking: “Why didn’t you take care of that before you left the house?” But you’re not really supposed to pop pimples, and when pushing out blackheads, you should be sure to steam your face first for fifteen to twenty minutes.



I’m always reading up on new things, and lately I’ve run across this natural way to cleanse the face that’s especially good for people with super sensitive skin. First, I steam my face and take a cotton cloth to gently push the blackheads out of my face once I’m finished. Then I rinse my face with slightly cold water. (Using water that’s too cold isn’t good for your face. You’re trying to close the open pores on your face, but you shouldn’t shock and stun your pores with extra cold water.) Then I’ll take about one fourth cup lemon juice, a half teaspoon of baking soda, and about a nickel sized dollop of honey. I mix them all together and gently start to apply and massage into my face. After two to three minutes of massaging, I’ll rinse my face. Then I’ll blot my face with a towel that has a light color to make sure it’s properly cleansed. For toner, I use witch hazel which is the best natural toner out there. Then I’m done. 

This cleansing ritual also works really well for people with chest and back acne too.

I’m taking Biotin. It’s helped my hair grow, but it has also helped my face. I’m not as oily and, at the end of the day, my skin feels a lot better—it feels firmer, replenished, and hydrated.

Try this little home remedy for yourself and let me know what you think.

Lemon Mask Setup

Summer to Winter Skin Adjustment

Climates are changing as we invite autumn in. Here in California, where we only really have two seasons, we experience Indian summers into October. The weather seems to be getting warmer versus taking a step back to cool off.

Other places that do not experience Indian summers actually have four seasons and are starting to become chilly. People there are preparing their homes to greet the snowy nights.

So our topic is climate change! Sudden climate changes can leave skin and hair a bit dull if not treated head on. So how does a warmer or cooler climate affect your skin?

Let’s meet the skin first. When dealing with extreme temperatures, the skin goes into a panic. She’s a tough cookie, but when it comes to dealing with drastic change, she puts her defense up.

Most people forget that the skin is an organ and its job is to protect above all. It acts as an external shield to the inner organs to keep the body within a normal temperature (37°C, 98.6°F) at all times. When the skin suddenly shifts locations to wildly different temperatures, it reacts. It happens all the time. Walking indoors from the hot, humid weather to a cool, air-conditioned building and, within a couple of seconds, the skin must adjust. Oh skin, don’t we all!

Whatever climate the skin is faced with, being moisturized is very important. The moisture—consisting of fatty acids, lipids, and natural oils—should be between pH level 4.5 and 5.5 (acidic) which is enough to repel bacteria. Doing this successfully depends on external factors (e.g. moisturizers) and internal factors (e.g. water bottles galore).

Sunscreen should always be used daily, no matter the weather and climate! And in any climate, moisturize the skin and make sure you’re drinking enough water.

Now, when the weather is warm, your skin reacts by sweating, which cools down the body. Heat and your skin tends to butt heads. This is the time where most breakouts occur because your skin is in overdrive producing oils already so people think: “Why even moisturize? It’ll only clog pores even more and cause more bumpity bumps.”

You do want to avoid the thicker, heavier creams for moisturizing during the warmer climate and stick to something light and noncomedogenic. But you still have to moisturize your skin. Botanical kinetics™ hydrating lotion is a great option because this quick-absorbing lotion—which contains emollients derived from coconut, jojoba and other naturally-derived ingredients—replenishes moisture with a gentle touch. Camomile and lavender blend helps promote a soft, supple skin texture.

Remember those tips for warmer weather. But now let’s add humidity. Moisturizers that contain humectants—a hygroscopic substance used to keep things moist—is ideal for humid weather. They prevent the loss of moisture so the skin retains the natural moisture it already has. According to a Mayo Clinic article, you should look at the ingredient list for urea, glycerin, aloe vera, or alpha hydroxy acids.

But if you actually live where fall transitions into winter, your skin functions differently. Circulation becomes sluggish which results in sensitive skin. Remember, your skin just went through a season of hot weather and is about to adjust to the colder weather. Keep those summer products to the side, or even toss them to avoid using them after expiration, and grab the thicker creams for the cold air.

In a 2011 article, Jessica Krant, Assistant Clinical Professor of Dermatology at SUNY Downstate Medical Center said, “Winter brings dryness from every direction, which sucks the moisture out of our skin, lips, hair and even our eyes.” She makes a series of suggestions on how to combat the effects of winter cold.

In an article from HealthDay News, Dr. Amy McMichael, a dermatologist at the Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center in Winston-Salem, offered the following tips for protecting skin during the winter months:

  • Switch to a thicker facial and body moisturizer.
  • Do not use indoor tanning beds.
  • Limit alcohol consumption and avoid hot beverages to minimize rosacea flare-ups.
  • Laser and chemical procedures are available that can help treat rosacea, melasma (a kind of skin discoloration) and other skin problems.
  • Take advantage of off-season or post-holiday sales on sun-protective clothing to help protect your skin all year long.

The Daily Glow, which is now EveryDayHealth, released a report on the Best and Worst Skin Cities. There’s also an infographic.

San Francisco is number two, yea!

Embracing a Holistic Approach Toward Skincare

November 20, 2014
By

When I first enrolled at Cinta Aveda, I knew that I had an obscure fondness for extracting sebum from the skin—and that’s it. I wasn’t too sure that I cared much about creating an urban retreat “getaway” type of experience, or making people feel at ease, or even treating people’s skin and creating long-term solutions addressing their concerns. I really just wanted to squeeze gunk out of pores and call it a day. Boy, has that changed dramatically!

Don’t get me wrong, I still love extractions. However my educators, along with experiences with my clients, have shaped my outlook to one that’s much more holistic: to treat the client in his or her entirety. Now I want to not only address the skin in its present state, but to address the roots of any problems—whether it be lifestyle, stress levels, medications, overall attitude, etc. One’s skin, after all, is an organ. It absorbs external free radicals, and is a reflection not only of the foods and beverages you put in your body, but also of the hormonal highs and lows, emotions, sleep quality, and an endless list of other life circumstances. To neglect these forces, therefore, would leave my work incomplete.

Personally, I think the holistic outlook will prove to be much more effective—for the mind, body, and soul. I am so grateful to have had by horizons broadened during my time here at Cinta Aveda, and I look forward to incorporating the mission of Aveda into all of my future endeavors.

Home Remedies for Dry Skin

October 15, 2014
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Home Remedies for Dry Skin include Avocado

In this entry I will be discussing how to remedy dry skin at home. As the weather changes and we move into the winter months, I am sure we will all notice a change in our skin. When our bodies have trouble holding in the water and oil that it needs to keep skin moist, we end up with dry skin. One main reason you could have dry or scaly skin is due to low humidity. Heating and air conditioning can also contribute to dry skin.

  • Baking Soda

    A baking soda soak is a folk remedy to relieve itching and dry skin. Add one cup baking soda to a tub of hot water. Soak for 30 minutes and air dry.

  • Oatmeal

    Adding instant oatmeal to your bath will soothe your skin. The oats are packed with vitamin E, a nutrient vital to healthy skin.

  • Coconut Oil

    This can improve the moisture and lipid content of skin. Best applied after shower to lock in the moisture or add a spoonful to a bath for a 30 minute soak.

  • Avocado

    Since avocado is a natural emollient, it can hydrate and even prevent dry skin. You can use as a moisturizing mask one to two times a week. Mash half of the avocado and apply it directly to your face and body. If you are looking for more hydration, add a teaspoon of honey which will add moisturizing benefits to the skin.

  • Water

    Drink lots of water. It helps to keep your body hydrated and can alleviate dry skin. Eight to ten glasses daily is the minimum quantity, but it is ideal to drink more!

How Do I Conceal My Problem Skin?

How do I conceal my problem skin? While there is no fast fix for acne, eczema, or bad sunburn, I found some great cover-up advice that will help skin look its best. It’s all about the prep!

  • Acne

    Make sure skin is hydrated by mixing oil-free moisturizer with foundation containing salicylic acid. To apply, use your index finger to pat mixture into the skin. Let it set for 30 seconds then look for any dry skin flakes and remove with tweezers. Don’t use powder to set the foundation—the chalkiness factor can amplify any blemishes.

  • Eczema

    You want to apply a moisturizing cream cleanser onto a makeup-removing wipe. Rub all over the face in a circular motion. Then rinse with cold water. Blend moisturizer onto the skin with fingertip. Next combine a dollop of foundation with a pea-size amount of moisturizer. Rub your fingers together to blend together, and then pat onto skin, applying evenly. Using foundation with a moisturizer is a soothing yet effective treatment for concealing and breakouts.

  • Sunburn

    Rub fresh Aloe Vera Gel over the burn and let it sit for 30 minutes. This will allow the skin to cool, and will calm the redness. Aloe also helps expedite the healing process of the burn. You will then apply a creamy moisturizer on top. Select a foundation two tones darker than your normal skin tone to cover the redness. You should wear sunscreen with an SPF of at least 15 daily to avoid burning in the first place.

As you can see, each skin ailment’s resolution is about mixing a moisturizer with a foundation. I hope this information helps.

Acne

September 27, 2014
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Acne before and after

Acne can affect you in many ways, both emotionally and physically. I myself have gone through the troubles and frustrations that acne can bring. I’m going to explain the different types of acne and how to help your skin heal, as well as give some tips for prevention.

Acne has four grades of severity:

  • Grade I—Minor breakouts, minimal comedones (black heads), a few papules (pimples).
  • Grade II—Many comedones, and occasional papules and pustules.
  • Grade III—Red and inflamed, many comedones, papules, and pustules. Better to get treated by a dermatologist.
  • Grade IV—Cystic acne. Cysts with comedones, papules, pustules, and inflammation are present. There is a higher risk of scarring and deep pitting. This grade of acne can only be treated by a dermatologist.

There are many ways to help with the symptoms and treatment of acne. It’s very helpful to keep your skin clean and have a good skin regimen. Facials are recommended once a month or as needed. A healthy diet is also good to keep in mind. Use products that are noncomedogenic. Avoid too much sun exposure and it can also help to reduce stress. And don’t pick your blemishes. Not only will you prevent the infection from spreading, but you will reduce the chances of scarring, and you’ll decrease the healing time.

Acne is a constant battle but if you take the right measures in keeping your skin clean and hydrated with the right products you can definitely win the fight.

Benefits of Alpha and Beta Hydroxy Acids

September 17, 2014
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We all have our issues with choosing products for our skin and finding the best effective products with ingredients that will benefit our skin! AHA’s and BHA’s are great ingredients for giving a youthful look to our skin. They both work in their own way for a particular skin type or skin problem.

AHA and BHA

Alpha Hydroxy Acid (AHA) is an acid that is derived from fruits that contain skin rejuvenating properties. Most commonly known are Glycolic, Lactic, Citric, Malic, and Tartaric Acids and are found in most skin care formulations as they promote the cell turnover rate. The process in which they work is by melting down the intracellular fluid letting dead skin cells to be removed from the surface of the skin. AHAs are water soluble and are best for the sun damaged or individuals with a thicker dermis. AHAs exfoliate the surface layers of the skin and help retain more water which, in turns, helps the overall moisture content. They do not penetrate as deep as BHAs; the overall effect of the AHAs is felt on the surface of the dermis.

Beta Hydroxy Acid (BHA) is specifically one organic compound—a salicylic acid. BHA will work in the same way as the AHA does by breaking down and exfoliating dead skin cells. The defining difference is that salicylic acid is oil soluble, which has the ability to penetrate pores filled with oil and exfoliate those pores. BHAs are great for those individuals with oily or acne prone skin. There is an anti-inflammatory property as well as an anti-bacterial affect from using a BHA. It is also great for sensitive skin types and those that may have a specific skin condition.

The Benefits of Sunscreen

September 13, 2014
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sunscreen_ultravioletWhy is sunscreen so important? This is the number one question people ask. There are so many reasons to use sunscreen or products with SPF. First, reducing the risk of skin cancer! These cancers strike more than a million each year. Melanoma is the deadliest and kills more than 8,000 Americans each year. Therefore, it is recommended to use a SPF of 15 and above.

Sunscreen is ideal for all skin types even if you have a darker skin tone. There is a common misconception that if you are dark-skinned, you don’t need sunscreen. But, in reality, we all need some type of protection from the harmful UV rays from the sun. Sunscreen also helps to reduce broken capillaries and any redness or blotchiness. It prevents your skin from getting sun spots which are darker spots which may appear like freckles and skin discoloration. It also helps slow down the development of wrinkles and premature aging.

Sunscreen or products with SPF come in many different ways and, if you are anything like me and feel like SPF creams are too thick or oily for acne prone skin, there is always an SPF powder.

These are some reasons to choose to take care of your skin from the harmful UV rays that the sun produces. We all want to make sure that we protect ourselves and start reducing skin cancer and deaths associated with skin cancer. Sunscreen can also help keep your skin looking healthy and young. And who doesn’t want that?

Waxing

August 10, 2014
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Cinta Aveda Institute Facilities. Image by Pipsqueak Productions.With a cosmetologist license you are also allowed to do waxing as well. I have come to find I love waxing! Waxing eyebrows, arm pits, nose hairs, legs, just about anything you need waxed, I will do, except for Brazilian waxes.

With waxing you have to be very careful in the way you apply it, the way you pull the wax off, and what you use afterwards.

When applying the wax, you have to examine the growth pattern and see which way the hair grows, and from there, you apply it with the growth pattern not against it. Also make sure the hair is long enough to wax. It has to be at least one half of an inch.

If it is honey wax, after you have applied it, apply the strip with the same way you applied the wax. Smooth down over the muslin strip with the growth pattern. Make sure to pull the skin taut before pulling the strip off. You want to pull the strip against the growth pattern, so pull the skin the opposite way.

With hard wax, you do not use a muslin strip, you simply let the wax harden. This type of wax is great for waxing the nostrils.

When finished with waxing, make sure to remove the wax with oil. The best oil to use is tea tree oil for it is used to help swelling and is antibacterial.

Make sure, before applying wax, you exfoliate the skin and take off any make up. The area must be clean.

Outer Peace Acne Relief

September 12, 2012
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Ever since I was in high school I have dealt with acne.  I have tried everything for it, from Neutrogena, Clean and Clear and even a doctor prescribe benzoyl peroxide topical cream. Finally I decided to be an esthetician and came across Cinta Aveda Institute. I had never used Aveda products, so when I saw that they had an acne line (Outer Peace Acne Relief) and an acne facial I was really excited.  After trying both of those combinations together my skin has been better than ever and healthier too. I have learned that there is no cure for acne but it can be treated.

 

Outer Peace Acne Relief Product Descriptions:

  1. Cleanser : Cleans deep into pores—dissolving oil, makeup and other impurities—without irritation or over drying skin
  2. Acne Pads: Cleanses, exfoliates, unclogs pores—to help wipe out blackheads and prevent new breakouts.
  3. Acne spot relief: Eliminate breakouts—and the bacteria that lead to more—while reducing redness and swelling. Ideal when extra help is called for.
  4. Lotion: Helps clear blemishes—and keep oil under control—while shrinking the look of pores. Balances moisture, so skin’s not over dry or shiny.

My results:

  • I follow this 4-step skin care regimen once in the morning and once at night. It doesn’t dry my skin at all. It leaves it smooth and feeling refreshed. I must say I truly love these products and so does my skin. If you have dealt with acne and nothing is working I would definitely try this line.

Tip:

  • like with all skin care regimens you must follow a strict regimen to get the best results. It might be a little more expensive than drugstores acne regimens but its worth the price.