Archive for the ‘General’ Category

The Ancient Egyptian Form of Hair Removal

The removal of body hair dates back to ancient civilizations of Greece and Egypt. I’ve read stories where servants were required not to have hair on their bodies while serving the Pharaoh, as hair on the body was considered at the time to be unclean by the upper class. Sugaring, a method of hair removal, was discovered around this time period. The method has been handed down over generations. Today it is one of the fastest growing techniques used by estheticians all around the country.

What is Sugaring?

Sugaring is a form of hair removal that uses a sugar paste made from sugar, lemon and some water. It is boiled at a high temperature and it forms into a molasses or paste like consistency. After extensive research, it was determined that sugaring can provide permanent hair removal and its benefits are much better than some of the other techniques used today.

I was taught sugaring and certified by Alexandria Professional Body Company about 4 years ago. I like sugaring better than waxing for several reasons. The first is that it can lead to permanent hair removal and it is not as harsh as waxing can be to the skin. Sugar also has many benefits. It is pure and natural, when applied it is not hot, it will not stick to your skin, it will not break hairs leading to in-grown hairs, it is more sanitary, it can hydrate dry skin and when applied will remove the top layer of dead skin cells. The second reason, is sugaring is better for the environment. Remember the ingredients are sugar and lemon. When you dispose of it is will decompose and melt away in the environment while wax (a rosin) will remain in the landfill for decades.

What to do prior to your first appointment

It is very important to stop using vitamin A, or vitamin A derivitives, like retin A, retinoids, glycolics or alpha or beta hydroxyl acids prior to your appointment. Sugaring is not recommended for clients on Accutane.

A few days before your appointment and leading up to your appointment, gently exfoliate and hydrate the area to be sugared. If you are having your underarms sugared it is very important to not wear deodorant to your appointment as this will hinder the sugar from attaching to the hairs.

In order to control the hair growth, it is recommended to come in for treatment every 3 weeks to get your hair growth under control. Hair grows in 3 stages and we want to get all three of those stages sugared and start a growth pattern that will eventually lead to less hair growth and eventually permanency.

Youthful Skin ~ At Any Age

Scientist believe that the aging process of the entire body is controlled by the hypothalamus, which controls the pituitary gland.

The Pituitary gland regulates the other endocrine glands in the body and how and when they release their hormones (ovaries, testes, adrenal glands and thyroid)

As we age, our internal body system becomes less functional and this can lead to several health issues, for instance, high blood pressure, diabetes, and sleep abnormalities. The most obvious example of age related hormone change is menopause.

Extrinsic or environmental aging is the premature aging of the skin from external factors that cause oxidative injury to the skin and body.

  • 80% of extrinsic aging is due to ultra violet rays.
  • Ultraviolet rays are the #1 generator of free radicals.

What is a Free Radical?

Free radicals are incomplete molecules that have lost an electron. When an oxygen molecule has lost an electron it tries to grab onto another electron. In the process of searching for another electron, the unstable oxygen molecule damages and disrupts the cell. Over time, free radical damage builds in our body, whereby aging us. When oxidation reaction occurs in metals, like iron, we call the process rusting. When the process occurs in people we call it aging.

Free Radical generators:

We not only produce free radicals from within our bodies but we also ingest free radicals through the following:

  • Sun exposure*
  • Smoking and Alcohol (1 cigarette drag gives your body 100 million free radicals in your body)
  • Industrial pollution, ozone, pesticides
  • Diet, stress and inflammation.

Two layers of skin tissue: Dermis (lower layer of skin tissue contains collagen and elastin, and adipose tissue) Epidermis (top most layer of skin)

Epidermal Skin Cell regeneration:

Cell production slows down as we age. Epidermal renewal varies from 1-19 days (teens) to 28-35 days (mid-life) up to 90 days in maturity which leads to dull dry skin.

Epidermal Skin Dehydration:

As cell production slows down so does the oil production in our skin. Without the oil production, moisture evaporates from the skin leaving it dry and flaky.

Skin Pigmentation:

Melanin is what gives our skin its color. As we age, our body produces less melanin. Melanin absorbs ultra violet light and free radicals which are precursors to skin aging.
As less melanin is produced more damage can occur with sun exposure. It appears as an uneven tan or blotchy pattern. Some call it sun spots.

Visible signs of Aging

Women in their 20’s 

  1. oil and sweat glands are highly functional,
  2. fat layer protects skin form bruising
  3. muscle tone.

Women in their 30’s

  1. wrinkles in corner of eye area
  2. grooves between eye brows

Women in their 40’s

  1. overall cell metabolism slows down
  2. cells ability to pick up O2, water and proteins diminishes
  3. redistribution of fat
  4. hollowing of cheekbone area
  5. capillaries are weaker and can leak

Women in their 50’s

  1. eyes take on a hollow appearance
  2. exposure of gum tissue
  3. let down of tissue
  4. muscles become weaker
  5. larger pores
  6. loss of elasticity and control

Different Skin Types

Normal skin is usually in good condition and has a sufficient supply of sebum (oil) and moisture. Normal skin is free of blemishes but can benefit from maintenance treatments to keep it healthy and attractive.

Dry skin is lacking oil or moisture or both. Treatments can help to eliminate the drying conditions by stimulating the oil glands to produce the natural oils and retain the moisture that is needed to keep the skin lubricated.

Oily skin has an overabundance or oil and may or may not be blemished. Treatments will help to normalize the production of sebum and help to clear blemishes.

Combination skin may have dry and oily areas, or a combination of conditions. Treatments help to normalize the functioning of the sebaceous gland and improve the health and appearance of the skin.

Couperous skin is identified by small broken capillaries beneath the surface. Treatments help to strengthen the walls of the capillary and improve the health and appearance of the skin.

Mature or aging skin is usually loose, creepy, wrinkled and or lined. Treatments will help to slow down the aging process and help diminish surface lines. Dry skin is often due to the natural aging process of the body. As a person advances in years, the body’s processes slow down and cells are not replaced as rapidly as they were when the person was younger. It is not difficult to diagnose aging skin, but skin ages at different rates due to the following factors:

  • The skin ages due to neglect and the external treatment it has received.
  • Exposure to too much sun, wind, salt water, or polluted air will hasten the aging process.
  • Physiological disease, ill health, and psychological or emotional problems can cause the skin to appear older.
  • Extreme weight loss can result in loss of muscle tone and lined and sagging skin, which in turn gives the skin an aged appearance.
  • Medications, lack of proper diet, and the misuse of alcoholic beverages and smoking may affect the appearance of the skin.

Help for mature skin: The mature client’s skin can be improved but the natural aging process can’t be reversed, nor the skin restored to the same vital condition of youth. I advise my clients that the treatments can make the skin look and feel better, but there are no miracle treatments that can restore aging skin. Cosmetic (plastic) surgery or skin refining, along with proper salon treatments and the enhancement of makeup may help to achieve the desired results.

Elasticity of the skin: Aging skin will often lack elasticity. The skin is tested for elasticity by taking a small section of the facial skin or neck between the thumb and forefinger and giving the skin a slight outward pull. When the skin is released, and if the elasticity is good, the skin will immediately return to its normal shape. If the skin is slow to resume its normal shape, it is lacking elasticity.

What is an Esthetician (or aesthetician)?

*Person devoted to, or professionally occupied with, the health and beauty of the skin.

Why should I be getting Facials?

There are many reasons why a person may seek a treatment for a facial. Usually the person has become conscious of the value of skin care treatments and feels it will be helpful in correcting his or her skin problems. A growing number of people feel that a clear, healthy skin is an asset to their professional appearance and to their self esteem.

For best results, I would suggest a series of facial treatments. This will produce a more positive result. One facial treatment is usually not enough to get the results you are looking for but it is a good start. A single one hour treatment cannot undo a condition that has taken months and sometimes years to acquire. My second recommendation would be the use of professional home care products to help achieve your skin care goals and enhance your facials. The combination of facial treatments and the use of professional home care products will achieve healthy, clear and vibrant skin.

What Type of Facials Should I Be Getting?

It all depends on your skin care goals, your skin type and condition. When you come for your first appointment, you will be filling out a consultation information sheet, a thorough skin analysis will be performed, and I will be asking you questions about your skin and your habits. I can then set up a plan to help you achieve your skin care goals. From your first facial appointment you will see a difference in your skin texture and color and most of all in your overall wellbeing.

What Type of Professional Home Care Products Should I be Using?

Home Care products can be as simple as a cleanser, toner and moisturizer. It can be a simple three step process or up to a five or six step process. Purchasing products is an investment in your skin, just like you would invest in your teeth or heart health. The products you choose to use will determine how healthy your skin will look and feel. I realize in this age of online shopping, you can purchase skin care products that are less expensive. I cannot guarantee the integrity of the products you purchase online. Often great deals online are deals for a reason.

Skin Care Product Tips

The beauty industry is a multi-million dollar market which offers plenty of products out there for all to use and explore. There are good products, high end products, over the counter products and then there are products that are just ridiculous. I constantly get asked, “What should I use on my skin?” My reply, “What are you trying to accomplish, and if you could change one thing about your skin, what would that be?”

I always recommend to my clients that you should always have a good cleanser, moisturizer and sunscreen. If you only clean your skin once a day it should be at night as your skin regenerates itself while we sleep. It is also a good idea to clean off all makeup, environmental pollution and any dirt and oil you have picked up during the daytime. Your pillow will appreciate a clean face.

A cleanser must clean the skin but never strip it of its natural oils or moisture. A cream cleanser is good for people with sensitive and normal skin. A gel cleanser is recommended for someone with oily combination skin. A cleanser with exfoliation beads in it is great as long as the exfoliation beads are rounded and does not have rough edges as this can cause small cuts in the skin while you exfoliate. Cleansing scrubs with crushed apricot seeds or walnut seeds do not make good exfoliators for the face because the exfoliating ingredient can be harsh and cause small cuts and abrasions to the skin.

A moisturizer that is a lotion will be lighter in texture and is usually recommended for someone with oily or combination skin. A moisturizing cream is recommended for someone who has dry or extremely dry skin. It is also common for one to use a lotion during the summer months as it is warmer, and a cream during the winter months as the air is dryer.
Sunscreens come in all different varieties. What you should know when purchasing sunscreen: sunscreen should be UVA and UVB (Broad Spectrum) protection. Also look at the packaging for any expiration dates. In 2012 the FDA started putting standards in place for over the counter sunscreens. Sunscreens no longer can say they are “Water Proof” they must say they are “Water Resistant.” Look for products with Titanium Dioxide, and Zinc in them. Also Parosol 1789 is also another ingredient that will give broad spectrum coverage. Applying sunscreen to the skin 15 minutes before going out is best. Reapplication of sunscreen every 80-90 minutes is the key to protection from the harmful rays and sunburn. Wearing a hat with a 3 inch brim is also highly recommended and can help with preventing skin pigmentation.

Life Style Changes are Essential in Achieving Beautiful Skin

Some people are just born with beautiful skin and others, including myself, struggle with acne and have to work tirelessly to attain beautiful skin. I often times look at magazines and see the models and movie stars with flawless skin, and immediately get depressed because I have struggled with wanting clear, flawless skin, most of my life. I realize that much of the photographs are airbrushed and computer enhanced. Models and Movie stars have special diets and routines to always look their best. It also helps when you have a team of makeup artists, estheticians and hairdressers to help you.

The following is a guideline that you can use to help improve the look and feel of your skin. It was written specifically for those struggling with acne but anyone can apply this checklist for achieving beautiful skin.

Home Care

The first step toward treating your Acne properly. It is just as important to use the correct skin care products. It is common when starting out that your products may need adjusting to achieve the proper usage for your skin. Always wash your face twice daily, once in the morning and once at night. Missing one wash can cause a breakout. Using proper home care is 50% + professional treatments are 50% of getting clear skin.

Professional Treatments

Going to see an esthetician for facial treatments 2 to 3 times a month can help produce lasting results! It is important that you and your esthetician monitor your skin for the first 2 to 4 weeks of treatment. Monthly maintenance treatments with your esthetician will help to keep your acne under control.

Food Awareness

  1. Food allergies can be tested with an allergist or your medical doctor. Food irritations are not testable by prick test; watch for symptoms, runny nose, lower energy, upset digestion/bowel movements, gas, bloating, body aches, headache, mood swings. TOP 8 FOOD ALLERGIES: milk, eggs, peanuts, tree nuts (almonds, cashews, walnuts), fish (bass, cod, flounder), shellfish (crab, lobster, shrimp), soy, wheat (gluten). Cut foods out to see how you feel, it can take up-to 6 months for your digestive track to heal, taking a probiotic can help regulate your system. Certain foods can be an irritant to acne and can be just as bad as an allergy.
  2. Eating organic foods and staying away from eating toxins, pesticides and GMOS. GMOS produce pesticides in your digestive track, they contain roundup (containing agent-orange) which causes severe acne all over the body. Common GMO Foods: Sugar, Corn, Soy, Aspartame, Milk, Canola Oil, Zucchini, Papaya, Yellow Squash, Tomato.
  3. Iodized Salt – Avoid pre-salted foods, things from the sea kelp, seaweed, if you can get your food unsalted you can use Himalayan Salt as an alternate. Some swimming pools are treated with salt and can cause a huge flare up. Ocean swimming will not help to improve the skin.
  4. Biotin – A vitamin of the B complex, found in egg yolk, liver, and yeast. It is involved in the synthesis of fatty acids and glucose. Avoid this as your body does not need large doses of this supplement side effects are acne.
  5. Caffeine – Do not drink too much it raises hormones and stresses your adrenals which is not good for acne.
  6. Alcohol and Soy – Raises your estrogen levels, causes dehydration and toxicity. Beer bellies causing the ‘pregnant’ look are high levels of estrogen in your system.

Environmental Allergies + Smoking

If you have allergies or smoke this can cause a large breakout zone in the cheek area. Eliminating food allergies often significantly reduce environmental/seasonal allergies. If you smoke consider vaporizing, completely stopping is best for acne.


We go through a massive hormone change every 7-10 years which can cause breakouts to start. Teen years are one of these times. Using products with fragrance, perfume, or other toxins/chemicals disrupt hormones. Food Hormones – Non-natural meat or dairy, soy, flax, eating or drinking out of plastic. Peanuts contain large amounts of progesterone avoid them completely. Soy contains large amounts of estrogen.

Birth Control

Makes 1/3 of its users breakout horribly, 1/3 stay the same, 1/3 clear-up, if you have cancer risks in your family especially breast cancer you should not be on birth control.

Water H2O

Stay hydrated! Without water the skin cannot properly balance itself or detox. We are made up of 65-75% water The skin is the largest organ of the body. Chronic dehydration can cause acne to increase. It will make your skin slow moving, slow cell turn over and healing time. It also stays more oily and toxic. Soda, caffeine, heavy sweating can cause dehydration.


If you do any activities where you sweat you must wash your face right after you exercise to remove the sweat, oil and perspiration! Even if this means you are washing 3 your skin 3x a day. Sweat can cause bacteria and clogs the pores almost instantly.

Pillow Case

Use the flip method nightly. Sleep on a fresh area of the pillow case every night, the next night flip your pillow over to the other side and then change the pillow case the next night.


Talking on the phone make sure it’s clean, wipe with rubbing alcohol often!


Make sure hair oils or hair products are not touching the skin, fragrance/perfume toxic hair products are major culprits that cause acne on the skin. If you don’t wash your hair everyday it can cause breakouts. Make sure to rinse all shampoo and conditioner from your hair and make sure to remove from your skin while showering. Toxic hair products can cause a big breakout issue. If you use hairspray use a shield!

Stress/Lost Sleep

Cause hormones to rise and breakouts to begin keep it mellow and get your rest!

Laundry Detergent/Fabric Softener

Get Free & Clear Laundry Detergent or detergents free of sulfates, perfume and dyes. Do not use any fabric softeners!


Most makeups are pore clogging! Mineral makeup is highly recommended to use. Not all minerals are created equal, popular minerals make up lines can contain toxins or irritants like Mica. Using brushes to apply your foundation or powder, brushes must be cleaned weekly. The use of antibacterial soap or shampoo with water is the best way to clean your brushes. Shake all the water out, reshape the brush bristles, let dry on a clean cloth. It is best to have two sets of brushes. Store clean makeup brushes in zip lock bags or air tight containers when not in use.


Using oils on your hair or face is a bad idea! The only safe oil in moderation would be Sunflower Seed Oil. Wash your hands if you have touched oil from the body, you can’t risk touching your face with contaminated fingers!


For cystic or inflamed areas you can ice the skin, apply the ice bare or with a clean wet towel barrier, massage in a circular motion for 10-30 seconds, stop for a few seconds then repeat several more times. This slows the progression of the bacteria and reduces inflammation.

Breakout Zone

If you have acne your face is a detox zone. small changes internally or externally can set off a mini explosion! Acne is about management not a cure, expect from time to time you will have 1-2 pimples show up, with the right program you will also have weeks where you are clear!

Special Acknowledgement and thanks to Jessica Roberts.

Skin Through the Ages

Skin In Its 20’s

Skin will still produce a good amount of sebum (oil) and will have a healthy cell turnover of about every 14-25 days. Breakouts may still be an issue, and you might start seeing fine lines around the eyes. Skin is an excellent record keeper. Sunbathing, smoking, late nights and cocktails seem like a fun idea now, but that starlet lifestyle will show up on your skin 10 years from now.

Skin In Its 30’s

Starting with your 30th birthday, collagen production slows by 1% every year. Cell turnover slows to 30 days, which can lead to dehydration and dryness. Signs of past sun damage may start to show (age spots or brown spots), and fine lines around the eyes may be visible. Step up exfoliation to resurface as skin renewal slows, and start to feed skin with age-fighting ingredients to maintain a healthy glow.

Skin In Its 40’s

Hormonal changes can trigger dryness and sensitization or rosacea. Wrinkles, age spots and uneven skin tone become more prominent in more zones of the face as cell turnover and collagen production slow. It’s time to call on intense ingredients including peptides, antioxidant vitamins and Retinol to stimulate collagen production, repair damage, firm and shield – and maintain radiance!

Skin In Its 50’s

It’s time to strengthen, energize and replenish! Menopause may start up in your 50s, triggering a 30% reduction in collagen and a dramatic increase in dryness and dehydration. Deep wrinkles, age spots and sensitivity are prominent. It’s time to strengthen, energize and replenish!