Wednesday, 4 February 2015

The importance of exfoliation

Exfoliation is the key to good clean skin. Depending on your skin type you should exfoliate 3 times a week or every other day if you have oily skin. There are a number of ways to exfoliate, but the best way is a a manual one that uses enzyme action rather than grains or kernels. Not only are grains messy,  but they leave a residue and block the pipes and can also scratch the skin. Micro beads seemed such a good idea until companies realized they were not biodegradable and created more landfill issues and are now being phased out.

The most effective way to exfoliate is in the evening after cleansing and in the bath:
  • Apply to a wet face by lathering up the product in the palm of your hand and begin on the cheeks, forehead, nose and chin. 
  • Concentrate on the nose and the jawline, which is where build up occurs the most using circular movements. 
  • Rinse thoroughly and if need be reapply to the nose area if you have oily skin.
  • Apply a mask of your choice. I recommend a moisture mask to rehydrate the skin that can be rinsed off.

Apply a softening lotion, followed by any serums or eye gels in your routine and then apply moisturizer at the end. If you have followed all the steps, you won't need much as the skin should feel moisturized and soft already.  

    Sunday, 24 August 2014

    The miracle of Vitamin C

    Vitamin C, is a great beauty treatment, but can't be stabilized as it’s water-soluble, which means you cannot store it and needs to be replenished on a daily basis. That's why bottles of the product tend to be smaller, because the concentration is stronger and doesn't last as long. There are creams, lotions, serums and capsules to choose from or even powders to mix at home. The less expensive products are usually combined with other derivatives that allow for a longer shelf life. That's the main difference between the products you see on the shelves, which aren’t as active as the concentrated versions (serums) and are safe for daily use.

    The concentrated products should ideally be used as a course, or a few times a week, rather than on a daily basis because it could, over stimulate the skin, resulting in redness or bumps and lumps if too much oil has been produced. Natural products can also go off quickly and could cause reactions, hence beauty companies use preservatives to stabilize a product to ensure a longer shelf life. As a general rule, anything without a preservative can oxidize within four weeks, so use it up or throw it out.  Recently, Vitamin C beauty products have become popular as a quick, instant beauty boost, but understanding how and when to use the products can bring faster and more effective results.
    • Buying a smaller bottle means the serum will remain more potent. A larger bottle usually means the product is less concentrated. Look at the percentage of Vitamin C, 20% is normal to have an effect. Once opened, the shelf life automatically declines. Choose a glass bottle that preserves the product longer than a plastic one.
    • Exfoliate twice a week, or if you have oily skin every other day. Products cannot penetrate a dead layer of skin as effectively, so try to keep it as clear as possible. A normal skin renewal cycle is a month, or in dry skin up to six weeks. Don’t over exfoliate as it could create skin sensitivity and a reaction.
    • Use a serum before your moisturizer and after using a softening tonic. The tonic will prepare your skin and allow the serum to absorb more effectively; otherwise it will drag and sit on the surface. If you have oily skin/or it is humid you may not need moisturizer, but apply sunscreen afterwards.
    • Skin reactions are possible as Vitamin C is active. If you get lumps or redness, stop using the product, as it is nature’s way of telling you that you don’t need it! If you still want to try using Vitamin C, use it as a mask that can be washed off or use a less potent formula only at night.
    Allow a month skin cycle to see any changes, although you may feel them straightaway. Don’t be tempted to use more product to speed up results as it may over stimulate the skin cells. You can use a product range that creates a synergy effect. This helps speed up the process by layering the products and building up the concentration slowly. Using Vitamin C inside and out is healthy and is essential for everyone. It softens, heals and protects and is also a key ingredient in skin lightening products and can also boost the skin after a harsh winter. It is the natural beauty quick fix that works without harsh chemicals and smells good too.