Skin

Benefits of Serums

Serum applied to a woman's face.

Serums differ from creams or lotions by what isn’t in them. Serums leave out occlusive (airtight) moisturizing ingredients such as petrolatum or mineral oil that keep water from evaporating. They also contain fewer lubricating and thickening agents such as nut or seed oils. Most serums are water-based, eliminating oils altogether.

Serums also have a smaller molecule, which means that it penetrates much more deeply than creams and lotions can.

If you want to brighten the skin, brightening serums will definitely get the job done. They penetrate deeply into the skin where melanin is produced.

Serums are useful to diminish the appearance of acne, and can help reduce the pigmentation appearance of sun damage.

Serums are very beneficial for your skin regimen. The good thing about serums is that there are so many different kinds that each have specific targets and can treat areas of trouble. Also, serums help moisturize the skin and having dehydrated skin is not a good look.

Here are some benefits of using a serum:

  • Serums have a better anti-aging benefits the longer you use them.
  • Serums can target areas of specific concern.
  • Serums help with hydrating the skin and locking in hydration as they are water-based.
  • Serums have high concentrations of vitamins C and E.
  • Serums are beneficial for people that have oily or acne prone skin.
  • Serums help regulate oil production.

Dealing with Rosacea

Cheek Displaying Rosacea

Rosacea is a chronic but very common skin condition. Cheeks, nose, chin, eyelids, or forehead become inflamed and red, often with small, red, pus-filled bumps. On some cases skin gets coarser and thicker with a bumpy texture.

Although rosacea can occur in anyone, it tends to be more common in middle-aged women and those with fair skin. If left untreated, it tends to worsen over time. It is also important to know that sometimes it can be confused with acne and, if treated in the wrong way, it can lead to a worse problem.

While there is no cure or proven cause, rosacea can be controlled by avoiding certain triggers:

  • Spicy foods
  • Very hot or very cold showers
  • Alcohol
  • Coffee
  • Extreme temperatures
  • Extreme exercise
  • Stress
  • Sun Exposure
  • Hot foods and beverages
  • Some drugs such as cortisone

Natural Remedies for Rosacea

  • Licorice is a very strong anti-inflammatory. Look for this naturally sourced ingredient on over the counter rosacea ointments or creams.
  • Rosehip seed oil strengthens distended capillaries and reduces redness of the skin due to its astringent qualities.
  • Chamomile , applied in cold compresses, is a terrific anti-inflammatory and skin soother.
  • The feverfew herb in capsule form can be used as an effective anti-inflammatory treatment for rosacea or severe acne.
  • Tea tree oil is a potent antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory. Be sure to make a patch test before using it because it’s strong and doesn’t work for everyone.

To minimize rosacea symptoms, avoid the above triggers, protect your face using sunscreen, manage stress levels, eat a proper diet, try out some of the above natural remedies, and use products indicated for sensitive skin: no harsh ingredients, colorants, and perfumes.

If you experience signs of rosacea, see your doctor for a diagnosis and proper treatment.

Benefits of Papaya

Papaya

Papayas offer not only the luscious taste and sunlit color of the tropics, but they are rich sources of antioxidant nutrients: the carotenes, vitamin C, and flavonoids; the B vitamins including folate and pantothenic acid; the minerals including potassium, copper, and magnesium; and fiber. Papaya is abundant in anti-oxidants due to a huge concentration of Vitamin A.

Papaya is a great bet when it comes to skin care. Papaya contains *papain which is helpful in breaking down inactive proteins and removing dead skin cells; applying papaya on the skin exfoliates it in a gentle and natural way. Use mashed papaya for cracked and sore heels. Mix mashed papaya with honey for a hydrating skin mask. Because papaya is low in sodium, it retains little water. The result is an overall hydrated skin.

Papaya is a great skin-firming and anti-aging mask. Mash uneaten papaya with or without milk and apply on your face. It helps in removing blemishes, dark spots, evens out your skin tone, and brings a glow to your face.

Rub the papaya peel on your face after eating the papaya. The alpha-hydroxy acids—coveted ingredients for their anti-aging properties—are found in abundance in papaya which makes it an acidic fruit. So let it stay for no more than five minutes and wash it off with cold water. If you let the papaya stay on your face for more time, it might cause dryness and even irritate sensitive skins.

Tea Tree Oil

Tea Tree Oil

Tea tree oil is derived from the Tea Tree. Its scientific name is Melaleuca alternifolia.

It sometimes comes from Australia. Originally it was used in tea by some, but Australian natives used it in medicine for a long time.

The most relevant uses of tea tree oil to someone in the beauty industry are:

  • acne,
  • after waxing,
  • during extractions,
  • for tinea unguium—also known as onychomycosis, which is a fungal infection of the nail,
  • tinea pedis (athletes foot),
  • scabies, and
  • possibly pediculosis (lice).

It can also be used as a natural antiseptic on things like cuts and abrasions. Some believe it can help with bug bites. It has many other uses and can also be used in the bath as a bath oil. This can be good for the health of the skin by soaking or it can be good for inhaling through the steam of the bath. Some people use it in this way for things like sore throat or a common cold.

Tree oil works by containing chemicals that may kill bacteria and fungal infections. Some people believe it also works to reduce skin reactions from contact irritants or allergic reactions.

When using tea tree oil, it is important to use a carrier oil. It contains eucalyptol which can be a skin irritant if it is not used correctly. This means that if one were to use tea tree oil as a spot treatment then 100% cannot be applied directly to the area. Mixing it into a small amount of lotion or serum is a much better option.

Facials are for Everyone

Man Getting Facial

Some people think, “Oh, facials are just for girls!” Or maybe, “It’s not for me.” Well think again! When I hear facial, I hear skin care. Well, everyone has skin and everyone should be taking care of their skin. After all, it’s the human body’s largest organ and it’s our first line of defense. Facials literally help us from the outside in, and with proper help from a professional Esthetician, results can be seen, if not immediately, then in just a couple weeks.

Here are just a few of the reasons why everyone should be getting facials:

  1. Facials increase circulation of the blood under the skin which promotes the renewal of skin cells.
  2. By working and properly massaging the lymphatic system that lies just under the skin, facials decrease waste underneath the skin that can cause puffiness, redness, and fluid build up. Facials also aid in detoxification.
  3. A good facial and facial massage can help smooth fine lines and promote collagen production, which is key to preventing premature aging, wrinkles, and sagging.
  4. A facial cleanses the pores on a deep level. Even non-acneic skin can use a good deep cleanse. Extractions and cleaning out the pores can help to maintain clear skin, stop acne from producing, and can help to change the pore’s size. Sometimes, when pores are left unchecked, they can start to stretch and widen with the build-up of oil and dirt. Please do not attempt to extract or pick at your own skin unless you are a professional and know how to do it properly; you could be at risk of scarring and infection.
  5. Facials provide deeper exfoliation than you can achieve at home. Exfoliation smoothes skin, allows for greater penetration of products including moisturizers or serums, unclogs pores, improves the skin’s ability to retain hydration, and evens skin tone.

Now doesn’t that sound like facials benefit everyone?

Benefits of Waxing

Brazilian Wax Bikini Area

From the start of my program, I’ve fallen more and more in love with my career choice. I’ve always been interested in the beauty industry from makeup and skin care to aesthetics and reconstructive surgery. I’ve always been fascinated on how seemingly little changes can make a big difference to a person.

But now, I’ve found a new love for waxing especially Brazilians. I first started with shaving. Big mistake. Thinking about it now makes me cringe. Once I started waxing I noticed how nice, smooth, and silky it leaves my skin, along with the reduction of hair growth. It also exfoliates your skin which can lighten the area you are waxing.

Benefits of waxing:

  1. It gives you smooth, silky skin that lasts
  2. No skin damage, if done by a professional that knows what they’re doing
  3. Finer hair
  4. Double function of both hair removal and exfoliation
  5. Diminishes hair growth
  6. Best of all, it is long-lasting: three to eight weeks depending on the individual’s speed of hair growth.

For first-time waxers, it is going to be a little painful due to the depilation of shaving. From shaving, your root tends to be a deep and thick bulb. As long as you stick to waxing religiously, you will be fine. From the first service, you will notice the difference in your skin texture and the reduction of hair growth.

Biohazards in Skin Products

Biohazard Symbol

Here is a list of some common, harmful ingredients that can be found in skin care products.

  1. Phthalates
    (pronounced f-THAL-lates)

    These are added to plastics to make them flexible. They are also used as lubricants in products. They can be found in perfume, hair spray, deodorant, almost anything fragranced, nail polish, insect repellent, carpeting, vinyl flooring, the coating on wires and cables, shower curtains, raincoats, plastic toys, and your car’s steering wheel, dashboard, and gearshift. They are responsible for that “new car” smell.

    Why are they bad?

    Phthalates are known to disrupt hormones, especially in men. They have been linked with many sexual developmental and birth defects.

    Recommendation

    In cosmetics, opt for natural perfumes. Look for products that do not contain synthetic fragrance since most all synthetic fragrance contains phthalates. Instead, try products that are scented with essential oils or are specifically labeled “phthalate-free.”

  2. Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (also called SLS)

    Sodium lauryl sulfate is a surfactant in most products, meaning that it reduces the surface tension between the product and your skin. In many products, it is the foaming agent, which makes it popular for use in toothpaste, shampoos, facial, and body cleansers.

    Why are they bad?

    Although the evidence is controversial, there are many documented links between SLS and cancer.

  3. Parabens

    Parabens are chemical preservatives added to many products to increase shelf life.

    Why are they bad?

    Parabens mimic estrogen in the body, making them endocrine disruptors. While controversy surrounds a 2004 study where parabens were found in breast tumors, many scientists believe that parabens are a known carcinogen, especially when applied directly to the skin. Parabens are easily absorbed and enter our bloodstream intact. This results in a higher probability that they may affect hormonal function.

Coffee Beauty Benefits

Coffee Cup and Beans

I’ve been drinking coffee for more years than I can remember. A good cup of coffee is what most of us prefer to jumpstart the day. Recent studies suggest that we can gloat about the health benefits of that morning cup of joe, too. Coffee can reduce stress and make you smarter!

But did you know that there are coffee beauty benefits worth noting too?. Coffee is packed with antioxidants that can prevent premature aging. And some research suggests coffee can decrease your risk of skin cancer. Here are three beauty benefits of coffee:

  • It gets rid of puffy eyes. Caffeine helps to reduce swelling and irritation. Rather than drinking coffee, applying eye creams that contain caffeine is best, because topical treatments target this skincare problem faster.
  • It temporarily minimizes the appearance of cellulite. Unfortunately, the skin-firming effects will only last for about three hours.
  • It exfoliates dry skin making it silky smooth. While coffee beans may be a bit too harsh to use on your face, using a homemade scrub made out of coffee bean grounds is a safer option for exfoliating the body.

About Sun Protection

Sun Rays Diagram

The Summer is almost over and we’re heading into Winter. Why do I need to worry about Sun protection?

The sun exposes us to two different types of radiation:

  • UVA (Aging Rays)
    • Makes up most of our UV ray exposure
    • Longer wavelength, which means it penetrates deeper into the skin
    • Main ray for tanning and aging
  • UVB (Burning Rays)
    • Can burn year-round
    • Shorter wavelength, which means more visible damage to skin
    • Main ray for sunburns, redness, and skin cancer

The Effects of Sun Damage

  • Fine lines/wrinkles
  • Dark spots/uneven skin tone
  • Sun burns
  • Darkens acne spots and prolongs fading
  • Skin cancer and melanoma

When choosing a sunscreen, consider the following:

  • Physical: Deflects/ blocks rays from the skin and is very stable. This type of sunscreen usually leaves a white cast over skin. Ingredients to look for in a physical sunscreen are Titanium Dioxide and Zinc Oxide.
  • Chemical: Absorbs rays to prevent penetration, generally stable though some chemical sunscreens are not, and usually does not leave white cast over skin. Ingredients to look for in a chemical sunscreen are avobenzone, oxybenzone, helioplex, mexoryl, uvinul, homosalate, octisalate, and octylcrylene.
  • Mixture: Mix of both physical and chemical sunscreens and leaves minimal white cast. Ingredients to look for in a mixture of both would be a combination of either type of sunscreen.

How much SPF is appropriate?

  • Make sure to apply a sunscreen with the SPF of at least 30!
  • Make sure to apply enough! At least ¼ teaspoon for face and neck and about 1 ounce for body
  • Reapply often. UV rays are the strongest from 12 pm to 4 pm. Make sure to reapply every two hours.

The Last Three Steps

Aveda Botanical Kinetics

During our morning skincare routine, how many of us run out of time and rush out the door? ME Do you sometimes cut out the last steps of your routine? I’m here today to tell you to stop doing that! The last three steps—toning, serum, and moisturizer—are essential to the rest of your day.

  • Toning

    Toning is incredibly important to the last two steps. When cleansing, the skin becomes alkaline. This is good because it allows the skin to be thoroughly cleansed. However, if the skin is too alkaline for too long it can cause problems. The skins natural pH ranges from 4-5.5 and sometimes 6. The skin needs to be slightly acidic to fight off bacteria and to keep the natural acid mantle healthy. Toner helps return the skin to an acidic state. It also helps serum and moisturizer absorb better into the skin.

  • Serum

    Serum is your best friend if you don’t like too many steps in your skincare routine. It has the most concentrated ingredients. Especially when paired with a good toner, serum can penetrate the skin well. This will deliver the ingredients deeper into your skin and keep them working for you all day.

  • Moisturizer

    Moisturizers are also important to keep your skin healthy and balanced. If your skin is too dry, it can cause excess oil, and leave your skin open to bacteria. Moisturizers don’t have to be super thick or have complex ingredients, but they do need to have ingredients that work for your skin type. Dry skin may need something with more oils and butters, whereas oily skin needs ingredients like aloe vera and those which are lightly hydrating.

I know you’re super busy, but don’t skip these important steps.

Beauty Benefits of Turmeric

Turmeric - Curcuma longa Roots

Turmeric, commonly known as haldi in India, is a spice derived from the roots of the Curcuma longa plant. This powder is deep orange-yellow in color and has a distinctly earthy, slightly bitter and slightly peppery taste, and a mustardy smell due to the presence of a substance called curcumin.

Turmeric is effective in the treatment of acne due to its antiseptic and antibacterial properties, which fight pimples and breakouts to provide a youthful glow to your skin. Turmeric facemask not only helps to clear acne scars and inflammation but also reduces oil secretion by sebaceous glands. Moreover, being a natural antiseptic, turmeric with milk is effective in treating skin conditions like poison ivy, eczema, and psoriasis. Eczema is a quite itchy and painful disease characterized by red scaly patches on the skin. Topical application of a mixture of Kasturi turmeric with milk can soothe the skin and reduce redness and inflammation.

Not only is turmeric great for the skin, it is also beneficial for hair. Applying a mixture of turmeric and olive oil on your scalp can treat dandruff and other scalp issues by removing debris and increasing circulation in the scalp. Additionally, it assists with the prevention of hair loss due to the activity of Curcumin, which is a component of turmeric that can inhibit the activity of “growth agent beta one” (TGF beta one) which causes the death of hair follicles resulting in hair loss. Furthermore, turmeric can be used in the treatment of various scalp conditions such as dermatitis and eczema that can lead to itchy, flaky skin, inflammation, and thinning hair. Cicatricial alopecia is a scalp ailment caused by inflammation that damages the hair follicles and prevents the growth of new hair. Fungal infections can also cause hair loss. Curcumin, an active ingredient in turmeric, is effective against these ailments due to its anti-fungal, anti-inflammatory, anti-allergic, antioxidant, antiseptic, and antibacterial properties. That’s a lot of properties!

Green Science Masque-Age

Woman getting facial.

The Aveda Green Science Masque-Age is one of my favorite products that Aveda has to offer. It is a great product to use during the massage portion of a facial for any skin type, as well as a great take-home product recommendation for a mature client who has dehydrated, dull, or wrinkled skin.

This masque/massage cream duo contains lots of hydrating and nutrient-rich ingredients including:

  • Jojoba Oil

    This oil is very hydrating and makes for an excellent natural moisturizer. Jojoba is said to be the closest oil in molecule structure in size to the natural sebum our skin produces, making it easy to penetrate nutrients deeply into the skin. In addition to its hydrating properties, it also promotes collagen production.

  • Murumuru Butter

    This nourishing butter contains a powerful dose of antioxidants, preventing free radical damage that causes aging. It is high in fatty acids as well as vitamin A, making it excellent for restoring the elasticity aging skin.

  • Brazil Nut Oil

    This oil is very good for aging skin, giving it a natural glow. It contains vitamins A and E which act as antioxidants, minimizing the effects of free radical damage. This oil is also high in selenium, an antioxidant that aids in cell protection. In addition to its anti-aging properties, Brazil nut oil is great for treating psoriasis, eczema, chronic dry skin, and other skin conditions.

Cucumber Toner

Grated Cucumber

This super easy cucumber toner naturally smooths and softens the skin. Cucumber has many beauty benefits such as fading dark circles, reducing eye puffiness, treating sunburn, tightening open pores, and much more! Let’s hop right into this recipe.

Ingredients

  • ½ cucumber peeled and grated
  • 3 tablespoons witch hazel
  • 2 tablespoons distilled water

Method

Add ingredients to a blender. Once mixture is well blended, filter liquid through a strainer to remove any cucumber chunks. Put in a glass bottle with lid and store in the refrigerator for maximum freshness.

Magnificent Moroccan Argan Oil

Making Argan Oil in Marrakech, Morocco

In the last few years, it seems like the hottest ingredient in the beauty industry is Moroccan argan oil, and let me just say I’m a believer!

I use argan oil on my hair every single day. I love the smell of the products, I love the shine and moisture it gives my constantly dried-out hair, and I love that it’s everywhere!

When it comes to hair, argan oil is a great product to calm frizzy ends, add moisture to dry hair, and add a little shine. You can apply to your hair while it is still damp for an all over treatment or apply just to your dry ends after your hair is dry.

If you’re dealing with dry scalp, apply some argan oil to a cotton ball, and dab your scalp with the oil; if the packaging is convenient, apply the oil directly to the scalp from the bottle. If you do this before bed, you’ll give the oil plenty of time to moisturize your scalp before you wash your hair in the morning. Or if you’re like me—I can never seem to get rid of a dry scalp—wash your hair in the morning and apply oil to the scalp before using your regular hair products, allowing the nutrients to seep in all day long.

Now I’ve been hearing a lot about the benefits of argan oil in the hair care industry, but being a believer and constant user of pure essential oils, I was interested in its effects on the skin. It might seem scary to apply a pure oil to your face, especially if you have finicky skin, but cultures have been doing just that for centuries and it’s left their skin smooth, clear, and visibly more radiant.

Products that work for the face almost always can be applied to the entire body’s skin, and argan oil is no different. You can use argan oil as a full body moisturizer, applying just as you would a body lotion or cream. Apply the oil right after you get out of your shower for best moisturizing results.

Argan oil is great to use on your hands as well, especially on your cuticles and nails if they are prone to cracking and peeling.

Basically, if your body is lacking moisture anywhere, argan oil will be your best friend. It sure is mine!

Five Skin Vitamins

Five Skin Vitamins

  1. Vitamin A: Also commonly called Retinol, this vitamin is found is almost all topical acne medications. It forces your skin cells to “turn over.” This means fresh new cells are pushed to the surface, leaving your skin rejuvenated. Vitamin A will help reduce wrinkles by firming and tightening the skin. Be cautious because Retinol can be harsh on the skin. Protect that new layer of skin with an SPF of at least 30! Foods like sweet potatoes, carrots, dark leafy greens, cantaloupe, lettuce, and dried apricots are good sources of this vitamin.

  2. Vitamin C: Vitamin C is your key to anti-aging skincare. Not only does it help fight against free radicals, but it also adds density, tightness, and glow to the skin, while eliminating uneven skin tone. Great sources of vitamin C include papayas, red bell pepper, broccoli, kale, oranges, strawberries, and cauliflower.

  3. Vitamin D: Our bodies do not naturally create it. In fact, to produce vitamin D ourselves, we need to have direct exposure to sunlight or UV rays. Research has shown that sufficient levels of vitamin D in the skin help minimize acne, boost elasticity, stimulate collagen production, enhance radiance, and lessen lines and the appearance of dark spots. This vitamin can be found in foods like salmon, fortified cereals, milk, eggs, mushrooms, and tuna.

  4. Vitamin E: This vitamin is essential to keeping your skin moisturized and is also an antioxidant known for neutralizing free radicals, protecting your collagen, and repairing your skin. Our bodies naturally create vitamin E, which is secreted on the surface of our skin as an oily substance seven days after consuming a vitamin E rich food. It creates a protective layer on our skin’s surface. Vitamin E rich foods include tofu, spinach, nuts, avocados, shrimp, olive oil, and cooked broccoli.

  5. Vitamin K: Vitamin K helps control blood clotting and helps your circulatory system, which is one of the main causes of puffiness under eyes. Applied topically, it can also help with popping veins. It may also contain retinol which thickens the skin and helps bulk up the translucent layer under the eye. Great sources of vitamin K include kale, spinach, broccoli, asparagus, brussels sprouts, and collard greens.

The CIDESCO Experience

CIDESCO BannerWhen I enrolled at the Cinta Aveda Institute, I had no idea how much I would fall in love with the esthetics world.

As my time in school dwindled, I realized that I yearned to delve deeper into skincare. This thirst led me to continue my education in advanced skincare and more by seeking CIDESCO certification, an international beauty therapy diploma. The CIDESCO program gives another 900 hours of expertise including massage therapy, anatomy, and physiology, dermatology, chemistry, cosmetic science, ingredient knowledge, machines, electricity, as well as a personal thesis and an additional subject of your choice.

As I am rounding out the last of my 1500 hours, I couldn’t be more thankful for my experience and for all that I have learned. I am especially grateful for the wonderful educators that I have had. My teachers all have had decades of training as well as loads of hands-on experience, and they have given me precious knowledge that I will bring with me into the field.

If you are thinking of doing CIDESCO, or are not yet sure, I highly recommend this training. A CIDESCO certification brings a great deal of prestige in the industry. It is intense and involves a lot of work but, by the end of the experience, you will be a more well-rounded, knowledgeable, and polished practitioner.

Acne and Outer Peace

Aveda Outer Peace Cleanser

Acne can be a difficult battle for both a client and an esthetician working to promote healthy skin. The Aveda Outer Peace line is a great line of products to recommend to clients struggling through breakouts. In order to give your client the best possible result, it is essential to know what is in this cleanser that makes it such a great option for an acne prone client.

The Outer Peace Cleanser contains many powerful, naturally derived ingredients including the following:

  1. Oat Amino Acids

    This is the active ingredient in the cleanser that makes it foam, also called a surfactant. Oat grain contains many vitamins and lipids that promote healthy skin. In recent studies, as many as seventeen amino acids have been found in oats. Oats give the skin moisture, protection, and have PH balancing properties.

  2. Saw Palmetto Fruit Extract

    Saw Palmetto is plant sterols, fatty acids, and bioflavonoids. It is rich in polysaccharides which are used by the body to aid in immune system efficiency and act as an anti inflammatory. Many studies have shown that Saw Palmetto is especially helpful in reducing hormonal acne because it inhibits the conversion of testosterone into DHT, which is one of hormonal acne’s main causes.

  3. Salicylic Acid

    Salicylic acid is a beta hydroxyl acid that is derived from wintergreen. It aids breakouts by dissolving the dead, keratinized skin cells to keep the pores unclogged, decreasing inflammation.

This cleanser is gentle yet effective on the skin. It thoroughly cleans the skin without over drying, which is a huge selling point for many people who struggle with acne or even just the occasional monthly breakout.

Five Benefits of Rosewater

Roses and Rosewater

Rosewater is an amazing ingredient to include in your beauty routine. It helps soften your skin and gives it a healthy glow. Rosewater can benefit your skin in many ways and it is very inexpensive. I’m going to share with you five beauty uses and benefits of rosewater. It’s an easy and inexpensive way to get healthy, beautiful skin.

  1. Reduce Eye Puffiness

    Apply rosewater on a cotton pad and gently place it on your eyes. It will help sooth the tender skin around your eyes, preventing or reduce under eye puffiness.

  2. Soften Dry Skin

    Ladies with dry skin can experience amazing benefits with rosewater. When rosewater is applied to the skin, you’ll notice the softening effect immediately.

  3. Makeup Remover

    Apply rosewater with a cotton pad and gently massage your face. For a more effective makeup remover, you can dampen a cotton pad with rosewater along with bit of coconut oil. It efficiently removes makeup and is gentle on the skin. Never rub harshly or stretch the skin while removing makeup.

  4. Natural Setting Spray

    Rosewater can be misted over makeup as a setting product, providing a healthy glow and beautiful dewy finish.

  5. Skin Toner

    The regular use of rosewater as a toner can help prevent wrinkles by slowing down the aging process, tightening those pesky pores, and adding a natural glow to the skin.

The Magic of DMAE

Dimethylaminoethanol Chemical Structure

Dimethylaminoethanol (DMAE) is a nutritional substance that is a powerful anti-inflammatory and membrane stabilizer. DMAE is a precursor to acetylcholine, a neurotransmitter that causes muscles to contract and tighten under the skin. Therefore, it can help maintain muscle tone in the face and body as we age, helping to prevent both sagging and drooping of the muscles under the skin.

Application of a DMAE-rich topical treatment results in almost instantaneous benefits. The skin looks firmer, lifted, less lined, and smoother. If a DMAE-containing lotion is spread on one side of the face, gently rubbed into the nasolabial fold, around the eye, forehead, under the chin, and on the neck, results can be seen in about 20 minutes. The side of the face and jaw line with the DMAE will appear more contoured, the eye will be open wider, the nasolabial fold lessened. The effect is dramatic. There will also be an immediate reduction in lines and wrinkles. DMAE is also outstanding in tightening up the dimpled skin on the back of the thighs and the upper arms.

Continued use of DMAE lightens the age spots that are commonly seen on the face and the back of hands and arms. These brown spots are formed from the accumulated lipofuscin deposits in the body. Lipofuscin is a waste product of the cells and usually appears in older people. Another age-defying effect of DMAE is its skin tightening action that slows down the natural sagging of the skin. Aside from plastic surgery, DMAE skin treatments seem to be among the most effective means to lift and tighten the appearance of facial skin.

DMAE is used mainly for optimization of brain performance and enhancement of positive, upbeat moods. Brain functions including thinking, memory, learning, and concentration also benefit from the long-term use of DMAE. Based on studies, surveys, and patient feedback, DMAE is a valuable and, frankly, amazing tool for making brain functions higher. As a bonus, it also gives the user a younger look through clear, even-toned skin that retains its elasticity even at an older age.

Fun Home Mask Recipes

Estheticians have used food for facial masks for many years now, but, these days, the ingredients have been a little more out of the norm. Usual ingredients are honey and avocado. But what about wine and acai berries? I did a little research and found two new and unusual at-home masks anyone can try out.

Red Wine in Glass

Resveratrol, a strong antioxidant found mainly in red wine but also in smaller amounts in white wine, may help to repair the damage caused by sun exposure that can lead to wrinkles and sagging skin, according to a growing body of scientific research. Kaolin clay draws out impurities, while the grapeseed oil moisturizes and hydrates, and the oat flour gently exfoliates.

Wrinkle Soothing Wine Mask

  • ¼ cup wine
  • ¼ cup kaolin clay1
  • 2 tablespoons grapeseed oil
  • 1 tablespoon organic oat flour1

Combine all the ingredients. Apply to the face, neck, and décolletage. Rinse with warm water after 10 minutes.

  1. Available in health food stores.

Acai Berries

Berries are rich sources of polyphenols, a class of antioxidants that, besides being used as wrinkle fighters, have other benefits. They’re a strong astringent, so they tighten the skin and minimize pores. Fatty acids in high doses, like the ones found in acai berries, seem to fight hyperpigmentation. The sugar and the olive oil form a gentle scrub which also helps in removing dirt trapped in pores.

Pore Tightening Acai Berry Mask

  • ⅔ cup sugar
  • 2 teaspoons acai powder (or ¼ cup smashed acai berries)1
  • 10 fresh, whole blueberries, raspberries, blackberries, or a mix
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil.

With a potato masher, mash the sugar and acai powder (or slush) with the berries. Slowly add the olive oil and combine coarsely with a whisk. Massage into the face. Leave on for about five minutes, then rinse with warm water.

  1. Available in health food stores.