April 2010 - Posts
Nothing makes us feel more beautiful than a new haircut, do or style! Whether it’s just giving myself bangs and a trim or adding mega highlights and a conditioning treatment, I feel amazing afterwards. Hair along with skin, are the first two things that seem to make an impression. Well, we all know how a bad hair day can truly ruin your day, so just that in of itself kind of carves my point in stone. Good hair is a very good thing and can make or break not only a day but how we feel about ourselves in terms of mood and self confidence.
Spring and summer are perfect times to get your hair in the best possible shape you can. There are so many cute cuts and styles this season that look great with healthy shiny locks. The choppy, asymmetrical bob, the straight and uber shiny styles, and the fringy, wispy bangs to name just a few. The one common denominator in all the spring and summer 2010 styles is healthier looking hair. And in my opinion and virtually every other beauty professional’s that I know of all say the same. You must use professional hair care products. This is no time to go cheap or shop at the grocery store. I like professional spa websites when shopping for my hair products. Lately I’ve been buying all my hair care products at SpaLook.com. Great prices and very professional!
Neil George products are absolutely amazing. The salon is located in Beverly Hills so I suppose they have the money to develop an incredible line…which they have…no doubt about it. I’m crazy for Neil George Intense Illuminating Duo. Intense would be the operative word! The duo restores dry chemically treated hair to the softest, shiniest hair you’ve only dreamed of! The precious Gooseberry formulated within the product must be the ticket!
Luxurious hair is only a click away!
Most of you know my favorite ingredients of all time, are topical vitamin C and glycolic acid. I’ve written so much in the past on these two dynamos that I thought I’d simply choose a few of my favorite articles from the BR archives and give those of you who haven’t read them a chance to do so. And if you have, you’ll be surprised what you may have forgotten about them. I even had forgotten quite a bit about a few great products and some of the good info and I wrote them! These are great little articles that sum up for you a collection of excellent products with vitamin C and glycolic acid.
From Feb 2009:
SkinCeuticals CF Phloretin Sets a New Standard in Anti-Aging Skincare!
From June 2009:
Crazy for Skincare Serums…Especially Pevonia!
Cheap Skincare…There are great inexpensive beauty products available!
From Oct 2009:
Superior Serums! Revale’Skin and Obagi Hands Down!
From Dec 2009:
After a lot of thought Dermalogica is still numero uno with me!
Today I’ll start with the letter A. It seems like a good place to start! A is for apple…but I maintain it’s for Anti-Aging!
In my opinion, if you want your skin to look younger you need key ingredients. Both of which start with the letter A!
Vitamin “A” is the first and “Argireline” is the second. Vitamin A or retinol is great for long term anti-aging benefits while argireline is for those of us who want to look great asap! A great combo in my opinion because while you’re waiting for that retinol to work over time you’re looking great in the interim because of the quicker effects of the argireline.
Vitamin A or retinoid derivatives work by generating new cells from deep within our skin. Argireline, which is a peptide chain of amino acids works by relaxing the muscles within our face to lessen the pronounced look of wrinkles from frown lines and crows feet.
My favorite retinol products in the past have always been virtually retinol only. Meaning a separate container that was retinol exclusively. It made sense to me because retinol is best used at night and so I just used it along with my other night treatments at bedtime. Additionally, I felt that it must be a stronger form if it were in its own container. However, since then I’ve discovered ZO Skin Health Ommerse Overnight Recovery Cream. ZO Skin Health gets an A+ for this amazing product. During precious sleep your skin gets a chance to get amazingly healthy by getting hydrated and repaired. The retinol reduces fine lines and wrinkles while the ceramides nourish the skin.
My argireline pick is one of my favorite skincare products on the market today. However, it’s also the most expensive. You’ll have to dig deep for this precious blend but you’ll be glad you did. Euoko offers Euoko Y-30 Intense Lift Concentrate. This product works both immediately as well as in the long term. It is anti-aging skin care at its finest. Expect to see dramatic results with pore size, expression lines, cell turnover, wrinkles and texture. This product is phenomenal. Another A+!
Today we step away from the academic side of the Beauty Ingredients Snob series to talk about straight up beauty. Today is all about beauty, drama and more beauty! Well I suppose that’s not entirely true because I suppose the ingredients in these products play an important role as well. If they didn’t, we wouldn’t get the dramatic results we get with them.
We all know our little black dress is an important a piece of our wardrobe…but there are also beauty products revolving around black that are just as crucial. When we pull out our little black dress…we want to be stunning…this holds true for some of the black beauty and skin care products I’m going to share with you today.
Black tea is amazing for fighting free radicals, anti-aging, and eye puffiness. My favorite anti-oxidant duo is by Juara products. Juara All Things Sweet Black Tea Set contains a moisturizer and eye creme that are brilliant!
Black pepper is a one way ticket to stimulating circulation and is used in many cellulite reduction products. Thalgo Aromaceane Slender is a primo example!
Black orchid and black violet are often scents and notes used in perfumery. Lovely fragrance! For instance check out Calvin Klein Euphoria Eau de Parfum for a great example!
Black currant protects skin and is also hydrating. My favorite black currant product is the aptly named Ole Henriksen Black Currant Complexion Oil.
Black moor mud has so many amazing therapeutic benefits that it would take a whole article (or three) on itself alone to even give it its due justice. Suffice it to say…it works! Just for the sake of letting you know how amazing it is I will sum it up in two words. Repairs Skin! My favorite moor mud product is by Kerstin Florian. You will be simply and categorically sold when you try it. Kerstin Florian Thermal Mineral Moor Mud Mask is by far one of the best mineral masks on the planet. Buy this black product! Wear your black dress! And hit the town tonight!
Last time I wrote about ingredients and some of their potential outcomes. I also self proclaimed my title as the proverbial “ingredients snob!” I guess it’s pretty clear by now I’m all about the ingredients when it comes to beauty products. I suppose we all are whether we look at it that way or not. It’s not rocket science to figure that out…but it is indeed science that makes the products work. I call it cosmeticokinetics and cosmeticodynamics. Whether those are actual real words or terms I doubt; but it makes sense to me to look at it that way. After all there are terms in pharmacology that are similar so it seems logical to me to borrow the parallel.
1. The process by which a drug is absorbed, distributed, metabolized, and eliminated by the body.
2. The study of this process.
1. The branch of pharmacology dealing with the course of action, effect, and breakdown of drugs within the body.
I’ve set this up for you to understand why it’s important to look at ingredients this particular way. In order for a beauty product to work I feel we need to look at its absorbability (molecular size, consistency, etc), how its broken down, what is in it and how all those things work together (potentiate activity of one another), how it works and the study of its entirety.
Today we’ll look at some top notch proven, effective ingredients in skincare.
Ceramides: are a collection of lipid molecules found mostly in the cell membrane. They are responsible for signaling the cell to regulate differentiation, proliferation, programmed cell death and apoptosis. This is why they’re an excellent ingredient for skin care products.
Elizabeth Arden Ceramide's Elizabeth Arden Gold Ultra Restorative Capsules are unique little ampoules filled with the precious ingredient. They are singularly dosed, easy to use and work brilliantly by supporting the natural collagen in our skin cells. (A perfect example of why it’s important to understand why ingredients are key to your beauty products). They strengthen and firm up the skin, improve the clarity, even out the tone, and diminish fine lines and wrinkles.
Elizabeth Arden is a premium brand which offers results oriented ingredients in all of their EA products. Elizabeth Arden Ceramide Gold Ultra Restorative Capsules containing precious lipids is my ultimate ingredient pick of the day!
One of the main reasons I consider myself an expert in skincare is because I always want to know the “x” factor. I want to know why products work. And simply put the “x” factor is the active ingredient(s) within the product themselves.
Think of back in the day when women simply lathered a thick coating of cold cream on their face. It does indeed make your face feel softer and more hydrated but could it possibly repair or nourish? Not likely. The only way in my opinion to facilitate a physiological action would be to shrink the molecules of the active ingredients or add a delivery system to get those ingredients to the deeper cells in the skin. This is where collagen production takes place. Additionally, the superficial layers must be exfoliated and again ingredients play a key role in that action as well.
I will be doing a whole series on ingredients over the next few days or however long it takes to convey the importance of these complex pieces of the skincare and beauty regimen puzzle.
Today I’d just like you to take a look at the many verbs in the word “ingredients” below. These verbs are potentially what you can reasonably expect when you choose products with the correct ingredients for your specific indications and needs.
Improves and illuminates
Gives a lift and protects
Repairs, refines, relieves, reveals and resurfaces
Exfoliates, enhances and evens out color
Detoxifies and diminishes
Invigorates and increases circulation
Enhances and encourages
Nurses redness, blemishes and other skin conditions
Tightens and tones
Softens, stimulates and strengthens
Next time…we’re going to take a look at my favorite skincare ingredients!
I’ve wanted Alchimie Forever Diode 1 Plus Diode 2 Age Defying Serums forever but didn’t feel like I should pony up the 95 bucks considering I usually only have a couple of hundred dollars each month for fun and extras. But before I knew it I succumbed and used a darn credit card! It turned out my obsession with buying beauty products panned out beautifully this time…thank goodness!
I had been reading the rave reviews for Alchimie Forever brand in general but especially for this little dynamic duo so I knew I wanted to try it.
Alchimie products scored big with Forever Diode 1 Plus 2 Age Defying Serums. These are power packed little bottles with concentrated extracts of potent antioxidants. The combination combats free radical damage and smoothes, tones, firms and lifts the skin. It has an immediate effect (great for using before a night on the town when you want to look sensational) as well as cumulative, long term results.
I’m forever indebted (both financially and gratefully!) to Alchimie Forever Face!
You know how some days you sort of feel the gravity of the world pulls you down more than other days? Like your body and particularly your legs feel extra heavy? And then other days you may feel light as a feather and have much more energy?
That to me is called “heavy legs.” And by that I don’t mean the literal sense of the word ‘heavy.’ I don’t mean they each weigh more than any other day; I mean they just feel like they do!
For those days (in fact in my opinion…every day) Decleor brand offers a couple of amazing Decleor body products called Aromessence Circularome Stimulating Body Serum and Aroma Dynamic Refreshing Toning Gel.
Decleor Aromessence Circularome Stimulating Body Serum is a natural product which uses the incredible properties and benefits of aromatherapy. It enhances blood flow and fluid exchange in the peripheral areas. You’ll find that after each use your body will unwind and your legs will feel energized, smoother and much lighter. To potentiate these benefits even further follow up with Decleor Aroma Dynamic Refreshing Toning Gel for an even quicker, immediate sensation of comfort, lightness and cooling.
So when you’re ready to feel light as a feather…ready to feel cool, toned and invigorated…check out these two sensational Decleor products.
Decleor products put the Sensation in Sensational!
Haven’t you been wondering about those Hydroxatone products they show on TV commercials or infomercials? I know I have been. And I finally succumbed! I’m glad I did. I figured it would just be another mediocre product that promises the world with little return. However, it is indeed a very good product. The only bad reviews I’ve read so far had nothing to do with results but only about scent or sensitivities. But even those few women who had those problems with it said it worked well in terms of getting the results that the product promises or promotes.
I haven’t had the problems with sensitivities at all with Hydroxatone products and I certainly have had that happen in the past with a few brands and/or products. One time I had to be treated at the dermatologist’s office for a Lancôme cream. It can be a horrible experience but I know that anyone at anytime can be allergic to anything. Therefore I still love some of my Lancôme cosmetics I have. It’s just that the one I was allergic to happened to have one little ingredient in it that I happened to be allergic to. Once you identify what it is it’s easy to ward off sensitivities simply by reading ingredients before you buy.
I bought Hydroxatone AM PM Rejuvenating Treatment and the Hydroxatone Hydrolyze Under Eye Treatment. They also offer a Neck and Decollate Treatment that I can’t wait to try next. Has anyone used that one yet? I’d love to get the scoop!
Hydroxatone AM PM Rejuvenating Treatment stimulates collagen production and is an amazing hydrating cream. It’s one my new favorite multi-tasking moisturizers that covers an array of anti-aging issues such as wrinkles, fine lines, sagging skin, uneven skin tone and texture. It’s also kind of nice to have one product for morning and evening use. Since I’ve started use, I’ve noticed dramatic improvement in the luminosity and firmness of my face. Even my jaw line skin appears much more taut. I also love the refreshing scent. I give it two enthusiastic thumbs up!
Hydroxatone Hydrolyze Under Eye Treatment is an advanced formulation that has been infused with their main active ingredient called Haloxyl. This is why it works so well with dark circles. Oftentimes dark circles are simply an accumulation of blood or blood by-products that just need to be broken down so they can be whisked away and flushed out of the small area. Since I’ve begun use my under eye area is much brighter, firmer and definitely much lighter.
So I can sum it up like this. Hydroxatone does what it says and I’m very impressed with the brand. I can’t wait to try more of their products. And if you’re one who may worry about sensitivity I’m happy to report that they offer Hydroxatone AM PM Rejuvenating Treatment for Sensitive Skin. Now that’s good business!!
I love how you can shop by category on many of the SkinStore.com brand pages. For instance, a lot of the bigger brands are broken down by things like face, lips, body, etc. for quicker, easier access to the specific product or type of product you’re looking for.
But my favorite tab is on their Peter Thomas Roth page. It’s the “what’s new” tab. I can’t tell you how many times I’m asked that question. Everyone always wants to know what’s new in the skincare industry or what new product has come out lately for specific brands.
When I last checked there were four new products available so I decided to purchase two of them. PTR products offer Peter Thomas Roth Brows To Die For and Peter Thomas Roth Unwrinkle Primer. And since I’ve started using these two products I can see why PTR chose the names for them that they did! I now have brows to die for…and the primer certainly promotes a flawless unwrinkled complexion!
Peter Thomas Roth Brows To Die For is a nourishing conditioner for thinning, sparse or over plucked brows. After using it daily for just a couple of weeks my brows are thicker, fuller and much more stunning!
Peter Thomas Roth Unwrinkle Primer is a lightweight product that prepares my skin for the ultimate foundation application. Wrinkles are filled, pores are minimized and tone and texture are refined. It’s loaded with a patent pending blend of peptides that promote wrinkle relaxation and I’m thrilled with both the immediate and long term effects and results.
When you want to know not only what’s new, but also extremely effective…check out Peter Thomas Roth!!!
I’m leaving tonight for Utah and I wanted to look especially good for my trip so I pondered what treatment to give myself. I came to the conclusion that my best options for quick beauty would be a mask. I wanted a mask that would brighten up my dull skin, tighten up my pores and firm up my sagging skin.
I chose PCA SKIN pHaze 9 Purifying Mask. And what a good choice I made! It’s formulated with the most incredible exotic ingredients. Algae from the Red Sea, red clay from France and wine extracts just to name a few! It has the best anti-oxidants and is a great choice for any type of skin. My face is completely refreshed, revitalized, detoxified and smooth and bright. From the moment I removed it with my wash cloth I couldn’t believe the immediate result I had just achieved.
PCA offers so many incredible products. I’ve always loved PCA SKIN brand! I used it professionally years ago but had kind of forgotten about it over the last year or so. Then when I was pondering which mask to use this morning it hit me that I had the PCA Skin pHaze 9 Purifying Mask in my drawer and realized how lucky I was to get to use it. It was a brand new tube that I must have forgotten I had purchased a while ago.
Don’t wait until you’re going on a trip to try out this mask! Try it sooner rather than later and you’ll be really glad you did! You will look like you just stepped out of a day spa. That’s truly the only way to describe it!
I think one of the best ways for making a regimen more effective is to swap out a couple of steps. Choosing a wiser more effective product to replace a mediocre one is not only a no-brainer, but can kill two (or more) birds with one stone.
One of the best things to swap out in my opinion is the toner (or balancing and prepping the skin for following regimen products) step. I replace the mundane cotton ball and toner with a mighty pair of pads! They not only tackle this particular (balancing and prepping) step but they do much more! They’re pre-soaked (convenient), they exfoliate (chemically), the textured pads themselves exfoliate (mechanically), they minimize pore size, instantly firm up the skin by stimulating collagen production, brighten and even out skin tone, clear up blemishes and calm redness…And that’s just the first pad in this quick two-pad process. The second pad neutralizes the action and this step is one of the reasons MD Skincare’s Alpha Beta Daily Face Peel is so effective, professional and multi-tasking.
Almost any professional treatment that significantly changes molecular makeup or cellular processes has a second step that either neutralizes or stops the action. Think of a permanent wave…after the hairdresser has changed the structure of the hair, he or she needs to stop the action and restore the cuticle shaft to its original state in order to keep damage at a minimum as well as finish off the process with a beautiful outcome.
My face feels clean, toned, and looks younger, hydrated and refreshed all within the two minutes I take by swapping out this one step of my regimen.
You can’t go wrong with any of the many MD Skincare products as they’re all incredible, but I have to say you will definitely go right with swapping out your toner step for MD Skincare Alpha Beta Daily Face Peel!
Lately it seems Gina and I have been writing a lot about men’s skincare so many of my questions and posts and comments have been about how men have these certain similarities within the industry such as, in general, they don’t like a moisturizer to feel too greasy, or packaging that may be too feminine, and just their habits in general when it comes to taking care of their skin. One common denominator seems to be how a lot of men love bar soap. I was talking to Caitie (who lives with me while she’s taking a pre-requisite course down here in So Cal) and telling her about men with regards to skincare and how they tend to love bar soap. She looked at me, chuckled a little and said, “Oh my gosh…that’s you!” And after a few seconds I started laughing and realized I knew what she meant. I love bar soap too!!
My shower alone has three soap dishes for my three favorite soaps. One for face, one for body and one for when I need an energy reviving pick me up!Here are my all time favorites…you’ll never see my shower sans any of them!
For face I spring for the incredible Cor Silver Soap. Pricey but so well worth it! You can also get it in the Cor Silver travel size if you don’t want to spend as much. It's an amazing cleanser that does more than just cleanse! It removes makeup, evens out discoloration, replenishes collagen, has ultraviolet ray protection, kills bacteria and maintains the natural moisture barrier. It uses tiny particles of silver, collagen and chitosan to reach beneath the surface of the skin. This technology is what makes the soap so special and pushes the price up. Next for my body I’m crazy about Bliss Mammoth Minty Scrub Soap! The mint energizes me and the exfoliation is superb! It has little massage nodules that stimulate circulation and works out tight muscles. It's also hard milled which means no goopy mess!
In my third soap dish lays my multi-tasker. From Molton Brown body I’m wild about Molton Brown Moisture Rich Aloe and Palm Body Bar! Formulated with soothing ingredients such as shea butter, aloe, and essential oils it not only cleanses the skin well but also hydrates beautifully. It also foams up nicely for a great close shave!
My girlfriend Debbie obsesses over eye cream and it always makes me laugh because she has the best eyes ever! Her brows are lifted and her eyelids are not saggy and the bottoms of her eyes have no bags or dark circles. And then it hit me that maybe the fact that she obsesses over eye products is exactly why her eye area is so beautiful!
I asked her what she uses and she gave me a list that only a true skincare junky would appreciate. I’ve always tried to use a single product that treats all eye issues, but she uses one for each specific issue and I’m thinking that perhaps she’s on to something!
Deb’s favorite all around “multi-tasking” eye cream is from Zo Skin Health:
ZO Skin Health Olluminate Intense Eye Repair
Benefits include repairing fine lines and wrinkles both instantly and cumulatively. It also reduces puffiness and dark circles. It increases tone and hydration and boosts collagen production and health. It also protects against the free radical damage..
Deb’s favorite for an effective lift is courtesy Perricone MD products:
Perricone MD High Potency Eye Lift
This product lifts and firms the delicate skin around the eye. Fine lines and wrinkles are diminished and future wrinkles are prevented.
Deb’s favorite for dark circles is brought to you by EmergnC's Eye line:
EmergnC Lighten Up Under Eye Circle Fighter
Say goodbye to dark circles with this amazing potent product. It fights both superficial and original causes of dark circles under the eyes. It also strenghtens the skin and lightens it as well.
Deb’s favorite for puffiness is a Sundari Firming line product:
Sundari Gotu Kola and Boswellia Firming Eye Serum
This eye contour treatment was formulated (via Ayurvedic wisdom) to prevent puffiness and reduce visible bags under the eyes. Ingredients soothe and tighten the skin around the eyes.
There are a lot of fans of StriVectin-SD out there. For years, StriVectin has been making many women very happy with its anti-aging, anti-wrinkle products. Most fans are aware that the original formula was actually a stretch mark cream. Resourceful individuals started using it on their faces and the results were exceptional.
With more women enjoying the successes of anti-aging products, many are noticing that they have missed some areas. Once again, StriVectin has delivered. StriVectin Instant Facial Sculpting Cream actually accentuates the cheekbones and jaw line by tightening and lifting. Many women don’t realize that aging is not just a matter of wrinkles. It’s also a matter of losing that tight, lifted youthful contour. The product even works to soften the wrinkles that start at the base of the ear. It’s about time someone addressed that problem!
I was really happy to see that StriVectin now offers a product specifically for the neck. While you can hide this area much more easily than the face, it can also give you away faster since the skin tends to sag easily. Rather than resorting to turtle necks every day, get yourself StriVectin Neck Cream formulated just for this difficult to treat area.
Remember when tackling your aging skin to treat the whole picture. Aging is not just about fine lines and wrinkles on your face. StriVectin makes it easy to cover all of your bases.
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