Our Newsletter

Payment Processing

Men’s Skincare: Keep Your Skin Healthy This Summer

As we mentioned on previous blogs pores on men’s skin are considerably larger than women’s. Due to this, they are more likely to clog. That’s why daily cleansing and weekly exfoliation are just as important for men as they are for women. This is especially true during summer, when men’s skin tends to be more active and produces a lot more oil.

Excessively oily skin can cause men to have shiny skin and boosts the probability of breakouts. To make things worse, frequent shaving and sun exposure can contribute to intensify the problem. This leads to a simple conclusion: if guys want their skin to look great in summer, you need to enhance your skincare routine by adding these simple rules this time of year:
·Cleanse Every Day: Daily cleansing is even more important in summer to avoid accumulation and solidification of excessive oil. If you don’t cleanse regularly you are more likely to get clogged pores and all of their nasty consequences.
·Use a Gentle Cleanser: Although the same cleanser may not affect your skin in the winter, it may in the summer. The goal with cleansing is to remove excessive sebum (oil) from the skin. However, some cleansers also act as mild exfoliates, especially on sensitive skin. This is where your skin may run into trouble since exfoliation should never happen on a daily basis because your skin needs some recovery time in-between exfoliations. To avoid this from happening use a gentler cleanser during the summer.
·Consider a Cleansing Cream: Cleansers basically range from lotions to creams. The advantage of cleansing creams is most of them also help moisturize. A cleansing cream is less likely to produce undesired exfoliation, no matter how sensitive your skin is. Also, a good cleansing cream will help heal your skin, especially if you’ve been in the sun too long.
·Don’t Over-Shave: Try to avoid shaving everyday in the summer. Shaving produces micro-cuts your skin needs time to repair and heal. This leads to your skin working overtime as it repairs itself. This can wreak havoc on your skin, especially when you’re out in the sun as your skin is battling healing these tiny wounds and protecting itself against UV rays.
·Wear Sunscreen: Excessive sun exposure produces sunburns nearly 50% of the time. This happens because people don’t always choose the right sunscreen for their skin. When in doubt, use at least an SPF 15 and make sure you reapply, especially if you’re sweating or in the pool.
Following these simple rules and adapting your skin care routine to summer conditions, will help save your skin from photo aging, premature wrinkles and lines. And, last but not least, your skin will look great all summer long.
If you have any questions or comments about men’s skin care during summer, or any general skin care questions, please leave them below. Also, feel free to send us a Tweet or write on our Facebook wall. Have a wonderful Memorial Day Weekend and don’t forget the sunscreen!
Image: Jim Bahn, "Surfer in Kauai – PK beach" via Flickr Creative Commons Attribution.

4 Tips to Cut Stress

Category: de-stress,skin care — May 19th, 2011

As we all know, stress has a direct impact on our health. For a number of reasons, we tend to overreact to certain everyday situations. This leads to a true human paradox that makes stress harmful. Our body can easily deal with the typical stress signs – increased heartbeat, general muscular contraction, hyperventilation and sweating – on a relatively frequent basis. But what happens when the stress response is triggered too often?

The stress response means wastes a lot of our body’s energy. The moment we are under stress many organic processes temporarily shut down. This includes skin cells that fight free radicals. Continuous stress leads to faster damage on skin tissues, leading to premature lines, wrinkles and spots.
The good news is there are some habits and behaviors that will definitely help you control the amount, intensity and length of your daily stress. Here we offer a few examples:
  • Yoga: This ancient Hindu discipline is a proven way to counteract stress and the processes through which our brain overreacts to certain situations. Yoga builds up control over some of the body’s unconscious mechanisms, stress manifestations included.
  • Sleep: The chemical reactions lack of sleep creates include a frequent and unjustified stress response. Therefore, getting enough sleep helps get your body back into balance.
  • Physical Activity: Running, swimming or hitting the gym are wonderful ways to help your body get rid of toxins and create endorphins. The balance of these two chemicals has a direct impact on how we react to stressful situations. Exercise also helps build up muscle, which helps preserve the skin’s elasticity.
  • Hobbies: Practicing an activity exclusively for the sake of pleasure, like reading, gardening, cooking or scrapbooking are also proven ways to counteract stress. Not only do these activities create endorphins, they also create a positive psychological effect because you’re having fun!

Cutting stress is key for the preservation of our health and to help our skin look young and luminous.

What are you doing to cope with stress? Are you already seeing the effects? Let us know. Also, feel free to send us any questions by leaving a comment below. Don’t forget you can also reach us on Facebook or Twitter.
Image: Lululemon Atheltica, "jessie at yoga tree" via Flickr Creative Commons Attribution.

Replacing Your Skin Care Routine with Supplements? Not So Fast…

One of the skin’s most amazing attributes is its ability to absorb nutrients from the blood stream and from the surface. The latter has historically been the target of the skin care industry with the developments of creams, lotions and serums. On the other hand, taking supplements for healthier skin became a revolutionary trend about a decade ago.

These supplements really help address specific problems and are a wonderful complement to your skin care routine (as long as the supplement and skin care products have been correctly chosen). However, they should not replace any steps in your skin care routine.
Whether you decide to take pills or supercharge your diet with vital nourishing ingredients, setting aside your anti wrinkle, moisturizer and exfoliate will cause a major hindrance to your skin’s health. Trying to replace any of these steps with a few pills and a new diet will deprive your skin of vital nutrients and water that is absorbed through the surface.
Using skin-boosting supplements is a good idea and will add a definite boost to your skin care regimen. That’s what they were created for: to be great allies, but never a replacement.
Do you have any questions or comments about skin-boosting supplements? Have some experiences to share? If so, please leave them below. Also, feel free to send us a Tweet or write on our Facebook wall.  We are always on the lookout for new topics to discuss, so feel free to send your ideas. Have a great weekend!
Image: e-MagineArt.com, "Pills 3", June 27 2010, via Flickr Creative Commons Attribution

The Dangers of Over-Exfoliation

As you may know, we are big fans of facial exfoliation. The process of exfoliating helps remove debris and dead skin cells, leaves pores unclogged and does wonders for your skin. Exfoliating once a week with a good scrub cream, mud mask or other exfoliate will help your skin look and feel smoother, tighter, firmer and illuminated.

Unfortunately, we often make the mistake of thinking “more means better”. However, when it comes to exfoliation, this definitely does not apply.
Over-exfoliation puts your skin’s outermost layer into high alert because it makes the protective lipidic film on it thinner than it should be. If that lipidic barrier doesn’t have enough time to return to its normal thickness, the skin will more than likely get very dehydrated.
Dehydration will likely trigger patchy areas of excess dryness as well as redness and itchiness. The skin will also be more susceptible to suffer damage from UV rays. Also, your skin will become very sensitive bringing about boosted probabilities for acne and irritation.
If you have already fallen into temptation and overused your usual scrub cream, speak with a professional skin therapist. Their advice will help your skin quickly recover. And always remember skin care is about choosing the right products and being disciplined, but never about using products in excess.
How often are you exfoliating? Have you ever experienced the effects of over-exfoliation? If you have any questions, feel free to leave us a message below. Remember you can also send us a Tweet or write on our Facebook wall. We’d love to hear from you!
Image: Katie Tegtmeyer, "Untitled", April 4 2009, via Flickr Creative Commons Attribution

Quick and Easy Skin Nourishing Snacks

Category: aging,anti aging,antioxidants,nutrition,vitamins,wrinkles — April 29th, 2011

In the same way vitamins A, C, E and Beta Carotene help improve your skin through lotions and creams; they also have the same effect when you eat foods enriched with them. Foods like plums, berries, tomatoes, sweet potatoes, cantaloupe and green will help you battle free radicals that cause wrinkles, age spots and saggy skin.

Eating fruits and veggies is a great start, but not balancing your diet means you may be missing out on other important skin boosting ingredients, like Selenium.
Selenium is recognized as one of the most efficient antioxidants. Clinical trials have shown it has a role in the prevention of inflammatory skin diseases such as psoriasis and eczema. Oats, corn, wheat, brown rice, poultry and nuts, like walnuts and Brazil nuts, contain high levels of this awesome mineral.
So, for your next meal try incorporating some or all of the following ingredients. You can even split these as little snacks throughout the day!
·A cup of Green Tea or a Green Tea Beverage
·A small salad made with corn, cherry tomatoes, lettuce and cranberries
·Orange juice
· A piece of cantaloupe
This kind of combination will definitely have an impact on the way your skin cells defend from the constant and increasing attack of free radicals.
Do you have any questions or comments about foods that are beneficial for your skin? What are some of your favorite skin boosting foods? Have some recipes to share? If so, please leave them below. Also, feel free to send us a Tweet or write on our Facebook wall.  We are always on the lookout for new topics to discuss, so feel free to send your ideas.
Image: adactio, "Walnut Salad", December 15 2007, via Flickr Creative Commons Attribution

Weights and Cardio: Just What Your Skin Is Looking For

Category: fitness,skin care — April 21st, 2011

Working out isn’t only great for your keeping your muscles lean and your heart healthy, it also plays a big role in how your skin battles the signs of aging.

Stronger and firmer muscles give the skin a better supportive surface, not to mention helping the skin detox itself. Detoxing is important because it keeps free radicals at the lowest possible levels. The lower the free radicals, the healthier your skin is.

So you may be wondering, “Lifting weights? I don’t want to be a bodybuilder!” And the truth is, you don’t have to be. Using very moderate weights and having good form is all you need to tone up.

Consistently working out your muscles (while making sure you give your body enough time to rest) will help boost the anti oxidative mechanisms and structural tissues in your body. The firmer your muscles are, the better your skin will look.

Hitting the gym is a great start, but remember to incorporate cardio into your routine. Activities like running, swimming, jogging or cycling will complement your workout, help burn fat and keep your heart healthy. With the weather heating up, it’s a great time to go run or cycle at your favorite park or around the block.

Breaking up your weight training workouts with cardio sessions is a great way to keep your muscles active and you won’t get bored!

Staying lean won’t just help the muscles in your body, it will also help the muscles in your face as well. You’ll start to notice more tone and firmness, which will help counteract winkles. Just make sure to continue sticking to your daily skin care routine.

What are some of your favorite workouts? Have you already started your new spring routine or do you have any questions on getting started? Let us know! Don’t forget you can always contact us on Twitter or Facebook. We’d love to hear from you.

Image: Lululemon Athletica, "Run:Swiftly Tech SS & Run:Speed Shorts", via Flickr Creative Commons Attribution


Which SPF Should I Use?

Category: solar protection — April 15th, 2011

Hopefully the weather is warming up wherever you are and you’re starting to plan some awesome outdoor activities with your friends and family. We hope you’ll be putting on some sunscreen or sunblock to keep your skin protected from the sun. However, with such a large range of SPF’s out there, which SPF should you be using?

For everyday use you should be using at least an SPF 15 on your face. No matter how cold, hot or cloudy it is outside, UV rays will still affect your skin. Remember: these can lead to sunburns, wrinkles and eventually saggy skin.

If you plan on spending a 2-3 hours outside at a barbecue or gardening, you need to protect your entire body, not just your face. Since your skin will be exposed to direct sunlight for a longer amount of time you should use at least an SPF 20.

If you’re planning on spending the entire day at the beach or by the pool, reach for an SPF of at least 30 and apply it to your whole body. As the weather heats up, the harmful effects of UV rays intensify so don’t forget to reapply! This is especially true if you spend a lot of time in the water or if you’re sweating.

With little league baseball and summer soccer leagues starting up it’s very important to slab on sun protection on the kiddos! Kids below 10 are particularly susceptible to sun damage since the outer layer of their skin is thinner. Because of this use at least an SPF 30 on your kids’ skin and reapply every hour and a half to keep them safe from those painful sunburns.

Putting on sunscreen can be particularly difficult on your kids (no matter what age). What tricks do you have to keep them still? Please share them! If you have questions or comments about SPF or other skin care issues, please leave them below. You can also send us a Tweet or write on our Facebook wall.

Image: Catherine, "Family Playing on Beach", via Flickr Creative Commons Attribution


UV Ray Round-Up

We are all aware of the potentially harmful effects that UV rays can have on our skin. We’ve all experienced sunburns and are well aware of how leaving our skin unprotected can lead to photoaging, excessive dryness, premature wrinkles and ultimately skin cancer.
To better understand the UV spectrum and the effects it has on our skin, let’s take a look at the different types of UV rays that affect the skin: UVA and UVB.
UVA rays are constantly bombarding your skin, which is why they are responsible for long-term damage. They are able to penetrate deeper within the skin layers and affect the skin’s structural tissues, which ultimately leads to photoaging. The damage within the skin cells ends up accumulating over time and generates lines and wrinkles along with saggy skin.
UVB rays are responsible for most of the short-term effects of sun damage. It causes sunburn, spots and can even lead to the formation of tumors.
Sunburns are a great example of how UVB rays affect the skin. When you get sunburnt your skin thickens as a defense mechanism. Unfortunately, this causes the skin to act like a sponge and absorb more UVB rays.
Once your skin starts to peel, the UVB damage has reached an acute stage. In an attempt to speed the healing of your skin, your body is killing off the outermost skin cells.
The scary stuff happens when you get burnt repeatedly. After multiple sunburns, the body struggles in letting the skin heal. This leads to the division of damaged cells, which can ultimately turn into a potentially cancerous tumor.
It’s very important to slather on the sunblock or sunscreen as the weather starts to warm up and you find yourself spending more time outside. Your skin will look younger and your health will definitely benefit!
If you have any questions on the different types of UV rays, feel free to let us know. Also, if you have any questions on what types of products to wear this spring, reach out to us Facebook or Twitter.
Image: gtall1, "Barton Fink" , May 16 2010, via Flickr Creative Commons Attribution.

Skin Care Workout: Change Things Up!

Taking care of your skin is similar to working out. Just like it takes time to tone up your arms, tummy and legs, your skin needs time to get in shape. As many see, dedication leads to fantastic results.

However, this doesn’t mean your skin care routine should be exactly the same all year round. Just like you don’t work out just your arms for months at a time, you need to switch things around.

When it comes to your skin, the weather can have an effect on the way your skin reacts to specific products. With spring in bloom and summer right around the corner, it’s time to make sure you have the right skin care products at the ready! Beginning to use them now will help your skin “get in shape” for the warmer weather.
If you are planning to spend more time outside, you should start using body exfoliates once a week. Exfoliation helps your skin restore its natural softness and radiance. This will come in very handy when you are showing off your legs in shorts or your favorite swimsuit.
As always, be sure to use a good moisturizer on your face and body. As the weather warms up, we tend to sweat more, which leads to dryer skin at the end of the day. Choose specific body and face moisturizers with humectant properties. These products provide water and, at the same time, they help your skin retain it. Remember: to avoid premature aging you must keep your skin moisturized.
In the winter you may have neglected to use a moisturizer with an SPF or you may have not used one consistently. As the weather gets warmer and you spend more time outside, sunblock and sunscreen use becomes vitally important, especially between March and September. Keeping your skin protected from UVA and UVB rays is very important to help keep your skin protected from photoaging.
Finally, you may be dealing with cellulite. No matter how discrete you try to be, those annoying little dimples may still be visible. Fortunately there are some products available that help battle this unpleasant (yet very common) skin condition effectively. It’s important to start using these products now because they take time to work.
What are you doing to adapt your skin care routine to your spring needs? Are you already following all these steps to look wonderfully in summer? Let us know. Also, feel free to send us any questions by leaving a comment below. Don’t forget you can also reach us on Facebook or Twitter.
Image: lululemon athletica, "Pre game stretch" , March 26 2010, via Flickr Creative Commons Attribution.

Cut the Stress, Improve Your Skin

We are all familiar with stress. Whether it comes from the office, family or simply driving through rush-hour traffic, stress has a definite impact on our health and skin.

Stress is natural. In fact, it acts as a part of our natural defensive response and puts our body on alert mode. The problems with stress begin when it’s triggered often and for long periods of time.
Dermatologists agree that stress is a definite cause of skin conditions like psoriasis, acne and rosacea. Day-to-day stress also makes your body more susceptible to a wide range of different attacks, including those from free radicals.
Stress interferes with our skin cells’ ability to battle oxidation. Certain mechanisms associated to stress, like muscle contraction and left-brain hyperactivity, use a lot of energy and take away from our body’s ability to de-oxidize. This impairs our skin’s ability to battle free radicals which ends up creating premature lines, wrinkles and spots along with a dull tone and lack of elasticity.
Knowing that stress does have a negative effect on our bodies, what are you doing to cope with stress? Are you already seeing the effects? Let us know. Also, feel free to send us any questions by leaving a comment below. Don’t forget you can also reach us on Facebook or Twitter.
Image: anna gutermuth, "5/365" , November 11 2009, via Flickr Creative Commons Attribution.