Women’s Hair Care – Maintaining Healthy Hair

Hair Reflection

Using the correct products for your hair is essential not only to enhance the hair’s natural state but also to give it nourishment.

When it comes to looking and feeling good, women’s hair care is a number one priority!

No matter the color, feel or style, we would all like to have hair that looks like it has been groomed, nurtured and perfected by a salon professional on a daily basis, right?

However, today’s crazy lifestyle and a full schedule can wreak havoc with how elegant our hair looks; mornings are a frantic rush against the clock, a lack of time doesn’t allow us to apply conditioner in the shower.

We blow dry our hair, apply straighteners or tongs, we pull, drag and twist without any thought for the damage we are inflicting to our precious locks.

Then we wonder why our hair is looking flat, dull and lifeless, or even worse starting to fall out!

So ladies isn’t it time to give your hair some much-needed TLC and give a lot more consideration to the products we buy, and the chemicals they contain before we apply them to our bedraggled hair!

We spend a staggering amount of money on shampoo, conditioner, bath and shower products each year. So, what is the actual cost of using these products to our body? With eczema and dermatitis problems rising, should we be concerned about the products that we use to clean our hair and skin?

So, before we move on to how we like our hair styled, let us take a look at what products we are using on a daily basis, and if in fact, they are not creating some of the problems we face when trying to get our hair looking elegant, you may be surprised at what we find!

Many of us, at least two or three times a day will strip oils, grease, and dirt from our skin, using potentially harmful shampoos soaps and shower gels.

hair styled

Sulfates and Hair Care:

People are now more aware of the damaging effect hair shampoo and conditioners that contain Sulfates (SLS) can have not only to hair but their skin as well. SLS is believed to irritate the skin by upsetting the natural oils that maintain the skin’s balance. This not only leads to damage but also reduces the skin’s ability to keep out allergens – such as SLS – that may trigger reactions such as eczema and sensitivity.

The three types of Sulfate that can cause damage:

  • Sodium Laureth Sulfate – (SLES)
  • Sodium Lauryl Sulfate – (SLS)
  • Ammonium Lauryl Sulfate – (ALS)

Chances are most people will have shampoo that contains one or all three of these Sulfates right now.

Most of these chemicals can be found not only in shampoo but cleaning and hygiene products also, such as toothpaste, soaps, and detergents.

The reason you see them in shampoo is that they act as the foaming agent, it is true that we all think if the shampoo we use doesn’t create an abundance of bubbles, it’s not cleaning our hair thoroughly.

These Sulfates appeal to manufacturers because they are cheap to add to products, and they are very good at removing the unpleasant oily build-up some people get on their hair and scalp, but at what cost?

While its true that there has been a lot of testing on the safety of using products that contain these chemicals, an increasing number of reports points to it not being good for your hair or skin.

So, If you continue to use shampoo that contains Sulfates, you risk causing damage to your hair, in both appearance and condition, unless these Sulfates are listed way down on the ingredients label, it is best to avoid buying shampoo with them in it.

If you have a sensitive scalp and facial skin you need to be aware that prolonged use of products that contain Sodium Lauryl Sulfate and Ammonium Lauryl Sulfate can lead to skin irritation. While most peoples reactions are minor, others can have severe allergic reactions, such as red rash, very itchy skin and the possibility of hives, even your eyes can become red and irritated.

As most shampoos now contain Sodium Laureth Sulfate and Sodium Lauryl Sulfate, the quantities may vary for different shampoos, the latter is highly comedogenic and known to cause breakouts for some people.

SLS + SLES

Shampoo’s that are meant to help with hair loss also have these Sulfates. Studies show that Sodium Lauryl Sulfate damages the hair follicle, if that happens there is a good chance it will contribute to hair loss, not aid it!

What is more surprising is how high up you will find this in the ingredients of  these shampoos (top six) which point’s to a high percentage of Sulfate.

A bottle of shampoo that contains only 0.5% of concentrated chemical that has sulfates in it can irritate your skin. You can find some shampoos that have alarmingly high concentrations of compounds with sulfates, between 10 and 30% so you can see the potential that has to irritate your skin.

Sulfates are great for cleaning oily, greasy buildup; however when used on a long-term basis they also remove essential oils from your hair, these naturally producing oils are what nourish your body and hair, without these your hair becomes dry and brittle with nasty split ends.

Also, for people who suffer from oily hair and scalp, it can exacerbate the problem as the dryness may promote more secretion of oil.

Alternatives to Sulfates:

So, isn’t it time to start looking for Sulfate-free shampoos? Yes, its true they still contain surfactants, but they are usually milder and have minimal irritation to skin, such as decyl glucose, coco glucoside, and lauryl glucoside. However, Sulfosuccinates are suitable for body washes and shampoos with high oil content (up to 50%) they are effective cleansers that produce high foam but are considered a gentler sulfate. Most people are happy with these ingredients, although these may still cause minor irritation to people who have overly sensitive skin.

sis freeWhat you need to look for are shampoos that contain 100% natural and organic ingredients. As with most organic products there are many benefits from them, along with fewer chemicals on your body, your hair is going to feel softer and cleaner with this type of shampoo, and your skin is certainly going to appreciate it.

Yes, sulfate free shampoo is going to cost a little more but isn’t it a price worth paying for the relief you are going to give to your hair and scalp?

A very good example of this is Moroccanoil Moisture Repair Shampoo, it is Sulfate-free, phosphate-free and paraben-free.

Moroccanoil ShampooMOISTURE REPAIR SHAMPOO REVIEW

Vitamins and Supplements for Hair:

Hair growth supplements come in the form of vitamins or herbal supplements that are used to improve hair density and healthy hair growth and regrowth.

In both men and women, hair loss is the result of a mixture of genetic and hormonal circumstances. It can also be due to side effects from medication-steroids, illness or medical treatment such as chemotherapy, long periods of stress that not only affects your hair but can have damaging consequences to your overall health, also auto-immune disorders and thyroid problems can all lead to your hair suffering.

If you believe your hair loss is a result of health-related issues, you should consult your doctor, treat the medical condition and see if this resolves your hair problems.

Hair loss can be due to a poor diet or a nutritional deficiency, and in these circumstances, hair growth supplements may help. A good, well-balanced diet will also help with your overall health.

Although there are many vitamins, plant extracts, and herbal supplements to help healthy hair growth, these can only promote hair growth if you lack in vitamins or nutrients.

scented hair

 

Supplements or vitamins to help hair growth:

  • Iron
  • Vitamin A, B, D, and E
  • Zinc
  • Amino Acids
  • Omega Acids – especially omega-3 fatty acids.

 

Iron – This is essential for hair growth. If your iron levels are low (anaemia), less iron is supplied to hair follicles, this disrupts your hair growth cycle and result in hair loss for some people. You can increase your iron count by taking supplements or by adding these foods to your diet – red meat, fish, lentils, spinach, green vegetables.

Vitamin A – This is needed by the body to produce an oil known as sebum; this helps to keep the scalp conditioned and healthy. If we don’t provide enough sebum, the scalp can become irritated or itchy, and lead to your hair becoming dry and brittle. A pre-stage of ‘Vitamin A’ can be found in orange or yellow vegetables such as carrots or pumpkins.

Vitamin C – An antioxidant that assists the body to absorb iron and helps with the production of collagen. Good sources of Vitamin C can be found in blueberries, kiwis, oranges, and sweet potato.

Vitamin D – This is a vitamin that can help to reduce stress and depression and will be found in healthy hair follicles. Vitamin D is vital to healthy cell reproduction, which is why it is so important for hair growth. It can be found in oily fish, eggs, and mushrooms.

Vitamin E – This is an important supplement that will protect hair and skin from sun damage. Nuts, broccoli, avocados are a great source of vitamin E.

Zinc – This helps to regulate the level of DHT (dihydrotestosterone) in the body, this hormone is known to cause hair loss. If your zinc levels are low, your body will produce more DHT, so leading to hair loss. You can find zinc in sesame seeds, fish, eggs, and nuts.

Amino acids – Are thought to be necessary for hair growth because they help the body to produce keratin and grow hair. Amino acids can be found in protein-rich foods like dairy products, meat, and eggs.

Omega acids – such as omega-3, are essential fats that your body does not produce. Omega-3 acids provide essential oils that help to keep your scalp both healthy and hydrated. These oils can be found in oily fish, avocado, and pumpkin seeds.

It important that you only take the recommended daily dose of these vitamins or nutrients, if you take too much of something it can be as detrimental to your hair and skin as taking too little of something.

Nourkrin:

Nourkrin
Nourkrin Woman Review

Nourkrin is a supplement that nourishes the hair and helps to aid the normal hair growth cycle. It contains nutritional supplement marilex which is fish extract and Biotin. Nourkrin should be taken regularly for a minimum period of at least six months.

As Nourkrin contains fish extract, it is not suitable for anyone allergic to fish or shellfish. You should avoid taking Nourkrin if you are breastfeeding or pregnant.

What is Biotin, does it help your hair to grow?

Biotin is a water-soluble B-vitamin and is also known as vitamin H, and it is recommended for strengthening hair and nails.

Biotin is a vitamin found typically in fish and works to break down certain fats and carbohydrates in the body. Biotin is often used in supplements for hair loss and brittle nails, particularly by pregnant women.

If you do not get sufficient Biotin in your diet, your hair may become weak and brittle, and this can lead to hair loss. You can prevent this by taking biotin supplements or by eating plenty of biotin-rich foods such as whole grains, liver, yeast, nuts and seeds, and salmon. Egg yolks are another biotin-rich food with one whole cooked egg providing up to 10mcg.

Do Supplements work?

Unless you are diagnosed with a severe deficiency in a specific vitamin, mineral or nutrient, you are unlikely to see overwhelming hair growth or regrowth, but the appearance of your hair should look stronger and healthier.

However, it is imperative to maintain a healthy and balanced diet. You should still make sure you are eating well and getting your recommended daily vitamin and nutrient intake.

How to care for your hair:

Women who have changed their hair washing routines, say it is because they are worried about damage to their hair as the main reason for change, so how often should you be shampooing?

Hair experts argue that less is more.

Over-washing can be hurting your hair, especially if you have bleached, colored, or chemically treated hair or it is naturally very dry or porous. Washing your hair every day strips away the natural oils and proteins that you require to keep your hair and scalp healthy, so do try to limit hair washing to three or four times a week. However, this can depend on your hair type.

Does hair get used to the same shampoo?

No, hair doesn’t get used to shampoo, it’s more a case that your hair requirements might have changed over time. If your hair has been colored or treated, you might now need a different formula, and if your hair becomes oily, try swapping to a lighter shampoo and also look for lifestyle reasons as to why it has changed.

I think it’s probably true that we need to rotate our shampoo to get the best performance from it, but the real reason is more likely to be because the products are building up on our hair and affecting it, alternating your shampoo on a regular basis can prevent this from happening.

How often should I wash my hair?

cool blonde

The finer and straighter your hair is, you will probably notice the faster your hair becomes oily. If you have this delicate type of hair, you will find that you can’t go more than two days without washing it.

The curlier your hair, the longer it allows you to go between washes, If you have thick, coarse, curly hair, this type of hair tends to be less oily, so you don’t need to wash it so often.

If you like to color your hair regularly, then it’s probably best to avoid washing your hair every day, this will stop your color from fading and your strands from becoming dry.

It is advised to leave your hair for at least 72 hours after a color has been applied before washing it, as it takes up to three days for the hair cuticle to close and trapping in the color molecules. So, If you wash your hair too soon, you risk disrupting the freshly applied color and your gorgeous new tone is likely to fade.

To help maintain your hair color, shampoo your hair with a color-protecting formula and wash using warm water, followed by a suitable conditioner, rinse out your conditioner with cold water. The warm water helps expand the hair cuticle, which allows the color-protecting agents to get in, and when you rinse with cool water, it snaps the cuticle shut and keeps the color inside.

When you do wash your hair, as we have stated, avoid shampoos that contain sulfates and silicons. Sulfates can strip the color, while silicons leave behind a residue that can have your new color looking dull.

Moroccanoil Colour ShampooMOROCCANOIN COLOR CONTINUE SHAMPOO REVIEW

 

Dry shampoo is your friend:

If you are prone to getting greasy hair, then use a little dry shampoo in between washes to soak up excess oil. However, try to avoid becoming too reliant on dry shampoo, as overusing it can lead to build-up on the scalp, this in turn will lead to clogged hair follicles, which can hinder hair growth.

Protect your hair:

Hair can be damaged by both UV light and heated tools, like straighteners, tongs, and the ever-reliable hairdryer! So, it’s vital to protect your hair when styling it.

When you blow dry your hair at home, always use a heat protector to condition your hair from the inside out to shield against damage from any heated accessories.

Mor-Oil TreatmentMOROCCANOIL TREATMENT REVIEW

Also, when drying your hair, be careful not to hold the hairdryer too close to your precious locks, this will help prevent nasty split ends. Never leave your hair dryer on your hair any longer than you could keep it on your skin.

Always think of your hair like you would your skin – what you put on it is going to affect it. Investing in good quality products and accessories will keep hair looking and feeling healthy and robust.

Is blow-drying bad for your hair?

Toweling your hair dry is akin to scratching your skin with your nails as it roughens up your hair fibers and air-drying can lead to frizziness.

Pat wet hair with a towel before blow-drying, if done correctly, it is better than toweling dry or just letting your hair dry naturally.

When blow-drying, the consistent heat applied in the same direction smoothens hair cuticles and gives your hair a nice shiny appearance. It also sets hair in place and helps seal in moisture.

To combat damage from hair styling accessories try using Moroccanoil Heat Styling Protection. This creates a thermal protective shield that allows hair withstand extreme heat, and provides a soft glossy finish to extend the life of every style.

Condition the right way:

A good conditioner is crucial when it comes to any hair type, at least once a month you should consider Deep Conditioning; this involves using a good quality conditioner that will put moisture and strength (protein) back into your hair.

To enable your hair to absorb the conditioner, towel-dry your hair after shampooing. Excess water will mean the conditioner will run off the hair and won’t penetrate the hair, delivering the necessary moisture to keep hair looking healthy and shiny. If you are short on time, at least squeeze out excess water before applying conditioner.

You apply the deep conditioner that is suitable for your hair type, beginning about halfway down your hair, moving towards the tips, always pay particular attention to the tips as these always seem to be drier than the rest of your hair. You can use a wide-toothed comb to ensure you spread the conditioner evenly.

Deep conditioning treatments usually require between 10 and 30 minutes on your hair, but they do vary in time so check with the product you have bought. You may now want to cover your head with a plastic shower cap; this is for two reasons.

straight shiny

One it helps to keep the conditioner in place, and the second being that some deep conditioners recommend applying heat to your hair; the cap helps to keep the heat on your hair allowing the conditioner to do its job. You do this by using your hair dryer on a LOW setting to thoroughly heat the product, taking extra care not to have the temperature too hot as you do not want to melt the plastic cap!

Rinse your hair with cool water; this will tighten the hair shaft and help your hair look shiny and well conditioned. Leave a couple of days before washing to allow the treatment to properly nourish your hair.

Brushes Combs and Styling:

No-one wants a matted and unruly head of hair, so brushing is a necessity, but don’t tear through your locks mindlessly, being too aggressive will only cause damage to your delicate strands.

Brushing from the roots pulls your hair out and inflict damage – always brush from the bottom and work up gradually, especially suitable if you have long hair.

For shiny, healthy and untangled hair, you should be brushing your hair twice a day, in the morning and just before going to bed, for about a minute each time.

So what’s the best technique?

It would be best if you had a round brush for blow-drying, a brush for styling and a tail comb to divide and move hair around.

Good brushes can be more expensive but they are worth investing in, and if you look after them they will last a lifetime.

For your own personal hygiene and to keep your brushes clean and free of dead hair, oil, and product build-up wash them at least once a month in a mixture of baking soda and warm water.

Also, the brushes and combs you use should change when your hair is wet to avoid breaking and static build-up.

Detangling CombDetangling Comb: Wide teeth are perfect for combing through wet.

When your hair is very wet, it can be harder to comb through, but it is weaker, fragile and more susceptible to breakage. It is best to put your brush aside and use a wide-tooth comb. The teeth are designed to slide through wet hair – especially if coarse, wavy or curly – much more comfortable than a brush can, and there’ll be much less damage to contend with when it’s dry.

Women’s Hair Care:

If you have fine hair:

fine hair

People with fine hair should be careful when putting anything on it containing oils like coconut, or olive oil, these are great for hydrating but can be too much if you have fine hair as the added weight will make it heavy, flat and limp. Aloe oil is an excellent alternative as it is lighter and will nourish without leaving hair looking or feeling greasy.

If you have thick hair:

thick hair

Thicker hair requires more hydration than fine textured hair due to wider strands. You need to be buying products that are moisture balancing to help hydrate drier ends and newer roots. If your hair is prone to frizzing, choose lightweight smoothing products that will control and not weigh your style down. If you do have very wavy or curly hair, a heavier cream or serum may be what you need.

African or Caribbean hair:

Afro-Carib hair

Afro and Caribbean hair can get dry because of its unique texture, which also makes it very fragile. It has distinct processing, styling and grooming needs and requires products that are specifically suited to it.

Most hairdressers comment that African-Caribbean hair is the most prone to damage of all hair textures. Issues they find with this type of hair are from product build-up on the scalp, and breakage caused by untangling the tightly-knit hair strands.

If you have coarse or curly hair:

Curly hair

Coarse, curly hair will often get dehydrated as it’s harder for natural oils to travel down and coat the entire strand. Jojoba oil and Shea butter are perfect for coarse hair as they are similar to our natural hair oils. This type of hair can be challenging to style if over-washed and become frizzy, don’t be tempted to apply anything too silicone-heavy as it will dull your color and end up causing even more frizz.

If you have colored hair:

coloured hair

Those with colored hair should avoid shampoos containing sulfates and silicons as these will strip color and leave behind a residue that is going to make your new color look dull and flat.

Exfoliate your scalp:

People today are more than happy to exfoliate their face and fully appreciate the benefits gained from doing it, so why are they not giving any thoughts to scrubbing their scalp?

Dirt, oil, and product buildup form on your scalp just as it does on any other part of your skin, and to keep your scalp and your hair healthy, periodic exfoliation is necessary to unclog your pores.

Just like the pores on your face can get blocked, your hair follicles can become clogged due to sebum buildup. If you have ever felt tiny pimples when you touch your scalp, this could indicate that your hair follicles are clogged and may have become infected by bacteria.

Also, keeping your scalp clean of sebum buildup not only ensures healthy hair follicles and in turn a healthier head of hair but it will also promote hair growth.

You may be applying hair growth tonic to your scalp, but clogged hair follicles will mean that very little of the stimulant is penetrating that buildup of sebum to reach the intended hair roots. You’ll end up wasting your hair tonic, and money!

So, you may think using clarifying shampoos that are formulated to cleanse excess buildup will cleanse the scalp also, unfortunately, these shampoos are used to remove buildup on the hair, and these are not so good at deep cleaning the scalp. To remove prolonged sebum buildup on the scalp, you’ll need to use a scalp scrub or exfoliate.

DIY scalp exfoliate:

An excellent DIY scalp exfoliate that I make and use includes Sea salt and Coconut Oil – this is both detoxifying and purifying. Also, due to the sea salt, its drying properties help if you have oily hair.

How to prepare sea salt scalp scrub:

DIY Scalp scrub

This DIY scalp scrub recipe is straightforward to follow. Put 3 to 4 tablespoons of sea salt (not table salt and certainly not rock salt) into a bowl and add coconut oil to it to make the mix slightly runny. Mix the oil and the sea salt for a few minutes, and there you have it, it’s ready!

To use, you first wet your hair, doing this will help to rub the solution into the scalp and also prevent any hair breakage.

Once you have wet your hair, gently rub the sea salt scrub onto your scalp in sections. Massage into your scalp without being too aggressive; you can add more water if the scrub becomes too dry. Massaging your scalp in this way also helps to promote better blood circulation and encourage hair growth.

Leave the solution on your scalp for a few minutes, rinse it off and shampoo. After exfoliating your scalp, this is a good time to apply your hair growth tonic. Your hair follicles are now clean and clear of any buildup and better able to absorb the nutrients.

Do this once a month will keep hair follicles clear, and your scalp will look and feel better, you may also see some new hairs appearing.

Conclusion:

I do hope this has brought to your attention just how important it is to be extra cautious when buying women’s hair care products. Buying chemical free products will make caring for your hair and skin so much easier, and a lot more rewarding.

Also, be aware that your overall health can have a telling effect on the appearance of your hair. Maintain a good healthy diet and add the correct vitamins and supplements will have a dramatic impact on the condition of your hair.

Allow for a little ‘hair time’ once in a while, having hair that looks shiny, full and healthy does wonders for your self-confidence.

What are your concerns regarding hair products and chemicals, do you use only organic products? Please leave any comments or questions below, and I will be happy to discuss them with you.

jo@yourskincarehelp.com


 

Alcohol and Skin Care Products – The Facts – Maintaining Healthy Skin

One question that I get asked almost on a daily basis is about the ingredients in cosmetics. What should I look out for in a product that is going to be detrimental to my skin? Most of the time, people’s biggest concern is Alcohol and Skin Care Products, and maintaining healthy skin.

Alcohol – How To Interpret It:

However, it isn’t so easy to give a straightforward answer, simply because everyone’s skin type is different, and anyone who has ‘sensitive’ or ‘very sensitive’ skin need to be particularly careful with the cosmetics they apply to their skin, as alcohol is the number one irritant for sensitive skin.

That said, one thing I do advise everyone, is to look for and avoid anything that has ‘Alcohol’ high on the list of ingredients.

With so much misleading or incomplete information online, you can easily believe that not all alcohol-based cosmetics are harmful to your skin. Products loaded with alcohol (SD alcohol, denatured, ethanol, methanol or ethyl alcohol) are absorbed quickly into the skin and have a light, delicate feel to them, it’s easy to see why they appeal to manufacturers and the reason why they like to keep adding them to their products.

Despite this widely available information being misinterpreted, research is conclusive: No matter what skin care problems you have, alcohol as the main ingredient in a skin care product is a going to aggravate it.

Can Alcohol Ever Be Good For Your Skin?

So, it’s perfectly understandable that you may be thinking their has to be a good reason why so many skin care companies include alcohol in their products. Of course, a few reasons will appear, but their are only two explanations that hold any weight. As previously mentioned, alcohol can make a skin-care product feel almost weightless, creating a deceptively pleasing aesthetic.

The second reason being that your skin is their to protect your body from ‘foreign bodies’ entering it, and naturally, this will include any cosmetics we try to apply to our skin, these include the ‘good’ ingredients we like to ‘feed’ it.

Skin-protective substances (lipids, enzymes, and antioxidants) are keeping the beneficial ingredients in your cosmetics from getting into your body. Alcohol helps to get these ‘good’ ingredients like retinol, and vitamin C to be absorbed into the skin more effectively, but in doing so it damages the skin’s barrier, destroying the very substances that keep your skin healthy.

There are undoubtedly other, less harmful ways to get the right ingredients into the skin, and without damaging the surface.

If Alcohol Evaporates – How Damaging Can It Be?

Most people will know that alcohol evaporates quickly, so it seems logical to think that if it is not on the skin surface for very long, the damage will not be so severe. Unfortunately, that is only wishful thinking, alcohol immediately harms the skin and will continue to cause damage long after it has evaporated.

Once the alcohol has done damage to the skin’s barrier, your skin has been weakened, and it will never be as good at protecting itself from further damage.

The Good & Bad Types Of Alcohol:

There is a group of ‘fatty alcohols’ which are not harmful in any way to the skin. Unfortunately, these often get confused with the bad alcohols, such as Denatured alcohol, the fatty alcohols (the right type) include, among others, Cetyl, Stearyl, and Cetearyl Alcohol.

These fatty alcohols are used as emollients and thickeners in skin-care products. Fatty alcohols do not irritate your skin and can be beneficial to help relieve dry skin, they give a pleasant texture to creams/lotions and help keep components stable in products, in small amounts these won’t create problems to any skin type.

When we talk about the presence of ‘bad’ alcohol in cosmetics, we are referring to a drying type of alcohol, the names to look out for on the ingredient label are, SD Alcohol, Denatured Alcohol, Ethanol, Methanol or Ethyl Alcohol and less frequently used Isopropyl Alcohol. These are the volatile alcohols that give products a quick-drying finish and help creams to feel weightless on the skin surface, and they also help to de-grease skin. It is understandable they have some appeal to consumers, especially for those with oily skin.

When you see any of these types of alcohol listed in the first six ingredients on the packaging of any cosmetic product, without question they will aggravate and are bad for all skin types. The consequences of using any cosmetics with high alcohol contents are dryness to your skin, erosion of the surface of the skin; this affects how the skin replenishes, renews, and rejuvenates itself. These bad types of Alcohol weaken everything about skin.

Alcohol’s Connection To Acne & Oily Skin:

Alcohol has two benefits that will undoubtedly appeal to people who suffer from acne and oily skin. Alcohol can kill acne-causing bacteria, and help reduce their breakouts, which is why people with acne favor alcohol-based anti-acne products. Alcohol also de-greases skin, and that instant relief from shiny skin is appealing to those with oily complexions.

However, research has shown that alcohol-based anti-acne products increase both irritation and dryness, thus making it difficult for those with acne to stick to their skincare routine. Research indicates that anti-acne products that contain milder alternatives to alcohol are better for the skin. The downside of using alcohol-based treatments is that the damage they cause leads to an increase of acne-causing bacteria, and makes inflammation of the affected area worse.

For those treating oily skin, alcohol can stimulate oil production at the base of the pore, so the de-greasing effect is counteracted by oily skin producing more oil, it is a no win situation! You have to avoid products that have high Alcohol content.

Alcohol & Skin Cells:

While researching this subject, I was reading about an experiment where small amounts of alcohol were applied to skin cells in laboratory settings (about 3% alcohol, keep in mind skin-care products contain values ranging from 5% to 60% or more) over the course of two days it increased severe skin-cell damage by 26%. The alcohol also destroyed the substances in skin cells that help to reduce inflammation and defend against free radicals.

So, it leads back to the question, why are products that are alcohol-based still being produced? We know these cause damage to our skin, whether you see the damage straight away or 10 years from now. There is no reason to use alcohol in cosmetics given that their are more advanced alternatives currently available.

Isn’t it a good reason for cosmetic companies to now stop developing SD alcohol/ethanol-based products when it’s such an out-dated way to be making cosmetics.

Conclusion:

So, what is the conclusion regards Alcohol and Skin Care Products? The research is clear: Alcohol harms your skin’s protective barrier, aggravates sensitive skin, triggers free-radical damage, makes oily skin and redness worse, and the most damning thing of all, it will rapidly age your skin.

It’s quite simple people, given the damaging effects of alcohol-based products, avoid them altogether when their are hundreds of skin-friendly alternatives available.

What are your concerns regarding Alcohol in Cosmetics? Please leave any comments or questions below, and I will be happy to discuss them with you.

jo@yourskincarehelp.com


 

Lab Series Skin Care For Men Review – Skin Matters

Lab Series For Men

 

 

Lab Series for Men is owned by the Estee Lauder Corporation, Lab Series Skincare for Men was previously known as Aramis Lab Series for Men. Estee Lauder has other brands that offer male-specific products, including Clinique Skin Supplies for Men and Aveda Men, but the Lab Series products are better by far. Generally perceived that men’s products fall far behind those of women’s products regarding good skin care, a few good products in a men’s line is most welcomed!

With regard to the ingredients in the Lab Series range, there isn’t anything in these formulas that you don’t find in products specifically for women. Regardless of gender, skin is skin; although hormonal elements do play an important part, for instance, male hormones make a man’s skin thicker and more oily than woman’s, whereas female hormones make a woman’s skin smoother and softer, and often with smaller pores than a man.

However, in regard to what either gender needs to maintain healthy, protected skin, there is little or no fundamental difference. When it comes to the numerous skin problems the human body can develop and need help with, such as acne, sun damage, free-radical damage, growing older, rosacea, psoriasis, and so on, there is little research to show that men require products that are markedly different to those that women need.

Lab Series Skincare for Men want to encourage guys to become more interested in keeping up their appearance using a sensible skin-care routine, with its masculine, no-nonsense packaging and plenty of products to give the Best Skin Care for Men – Maintaining Healthy Skin.

The Lab Series range offers good cleansers; some excellent moisturizers, including some with sunscreen; a good selection for the morning shaving ritual, such as an excellent shave cream and shave gel, and well-formulated post-shave lotion.

Good absorbent face masks and lip balm; many products are fragrance-free; with packaging that keeps light and air-sensitive ingredients stable during use.



LAB SERIES RAZOR BURN RELIEF ULTRA  

Buy From labseries.co.uk

          

Skin Type:

Formulated for all skin types.

What It Does:

Lightweight soothing lotion that offers fast relief from razor burn, irritation, and redness. Immediately distributes moisture to affected areas, calming the skin and re-building the moisture barrier damaged by shaving.

Ingredients:

Water Purified, Ceteareth-12, Coco-Caprylate/Caprate, Glyceryl Stearate SE, Dioctyl Succinate, Cyclopentasiloxane, Butylene Glycol, Coffea Robusta Seed Extract, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Extract, Avena Sativa (Oat) Kernel Extract, Sea Whip Extract, Betula Alba Juice, Bisabolol, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Caffeine, Glycosaminoglycans, Sodium DNA, Sodium Hyaluronate, Cholesterol, Galactoarabinan, Linoleic Acid, Phytosphingosine, PEG-10 Soya Sterol, Glycine, Glycerin, Astrocaryum Murumuru Butter, Hydrogenated Lecithin, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Sorbitan Sesquioleate, Propylene Glycol Dicaprate, Chamomilla Recutita (Matricaria), Ethylhexyl Stearate, Ethylhexyl Palmitate, Anthemis Nobilis (Chamomile), Sodium Beta-Sitosterol Sulfate, Stearyl Alcohol, Polyquaternium-10, Ceteareth-20, Potassium Stearate, Xanthan Gum, Stearic Acid, Acrylates/C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer, Carbomer, Trisodium EDTA, Phenoxyethanol, Methylparaben, Propylparaben.

How To Use:

Use post shave, apply a small amount with fingertips in circular motions around shaved areas.

Conclusion:

Although most post-shave products contain at least one irritating ingredient, Razor Burn Relief Ultra gets it right! It is a lightweight lotion that contains several soothing, skin healing and cell-communicating ingredients that are perfect for shaved skin, all without fragrance. This product is capable of making just-shaved skin feel calm and comfortable and helps tremendously with post-shave irritation and redness, I would highly recommend.



LAB SERIES INVIGORATING FACE SCRUB

Buy From labseries.co.uk

Skin Type:

Formulated for normal or oily skin types.

What It Does:

This Thin-textured energizing gel scrub will give you smoother, clearer skin and helps provide a closer shave. Actively exfoliates to smooth skin’s texture unclogs pores of debris and sebum, preps the skin for a smoother shave. Energizing gel scrub removes dead skin cells, and stimulates blood flow to create a younger, healthier look.

Ingredients:

Water, Alcohol Denat, Polyethylene, Glycerin, Tea Carbomer, Oleth-20, Prunus Armeniaca Seeds (Crushed Apricot), Menthol, Trisodium EDTA, Phenoxyethanol.

How To Use:

Apply to wet face and neck 2 or 3 times per week with fingertips using a circular motion, then rinse.

I use it every few days for that deep down cleaning, especially when I have been doing something that has left me feeling sweaty or dirty.

Conclusion:

Exfoliating is an important way to keep your skin smooth and radiant. It’s like giving your face or body a helping hand to clear away its dead skin, and this makes way for new cells to come through and provide the skin surface a fresh, radiant appearance.

Take care when exfoliating your face, mainly so if you decide to use a ‘scrub’ type exfoliator. Make sure you don’t scrub your face too often, and when you do, only ‘scrub’ your face very lightly. Rubbing too hard on your face and too frequently will cause more harm than good to your skin.

The scrub itself has a mild abrasiveness to it, but enough to remove any dead skin cells, making the skin smooth and making it easier to shave, you get a closer cut shave without any friction of the blade going across the surface, and avoiding any nicks or cuts. It is good to use if you haven’t shaved for a few days or have rough skin, it helps to soften the facial hairs. It does a wonderful job of exfoliating facial skin and is one of the best scrubs I’ve used.

If you use soaps and other lotions on your face, you probably aren’t aware of what gets left behind on your skin. You can’t expect moisturizers and creams to help your skin if it’s clogged up when you apply them. Get rid of the dead skin cells using exfoliators, and when you use Lab Series face creams you will be delighted with the results! I would recommend this product.



DAY RESCUE DEFENSE LOTION SPF-35

Buy From labseries.co.uk

Skin Type:

Formulated for all skin types.

What It Does:

Lightweight, invisible daily moisturizer with SPF-35 helps defend against high-impact elements of the environment – sun, climate, and pollution, that can lead to dehydrated skin and the look of stress and premature aging. It is Fast-absorbing, Non-acnegenic.

This Non-greasy formula absorbs quickly into your skin.

The Broad Spectrum SPF 35 filters UVA/UVB rays to prevent damage and protect skin from early signs of aging brought on by the sun.

HYDRA-ENDURE Technology joins barrier reinforcers and a blend of extracts from plants that are capable of enduring extreme weather conditions. Together, they help skin to absorb & retain hydration and defend against the damaging effects of infrared rays, pollutants, and other external aggressors.

Ingredients:

Water\Aqua\Eau, Homosalate, Ethylhexyl Salicylate, Salicylate, Octocrylene, Butyloctyl, Methoxydibenzoylmethane, Nylon-12, Octyldodecyl Neopentanoate, Behenyl Alcohol, Dimethicone, Glycerin, Myristyl Myristate, Cetyl Esters, Butylene Glycol, Polyethylene, Stearate, Peg-100 Stearate, Peg-6, Ammonium Acryloyldimethyltaurate/Vp Copolymer Sigesbeckia Orientalis (St. Paul’s Wort) Extract, Thermus, Squalane,Thermophillus Ferment, Anastatica Hierochuntica (Rose Of Jericho)-Extract, Triticum Vulgare-(Wheat) Germ Extract, Hordeum Vulgare (Barley) Extract\Extrait D’Orge, Betula Alba (Birch) Bark Extract, Salicornia Herbacea Extract, Saccharina Extract, Saccharomyces Lysate Extract, Acetyl Hexapeptide-8, Biosaccharide Gum-4, Caffeine, Cholesterol, Glycyrrhizate, Sodium PCA, Sucrose, Linoleic Acid, Trehalose, Trisiloxane, Extract, Sodium Hyaluronate, Polyquaternium-51, Lactobacillus Ferment, Steareth-21, -Ppg-2 Myreth-10 Adipate, Tocopheryl Acetate, Fragrance (Parfum), Laurate, Caprylyl Glycol, Urea, Myristyl Alcohol, Hexylene Glycol, Sodium Dehydroacetate, Disodium, Edta, Phenoxyethanol.

How To Use:

Apply to clean face and neck daily – before going into the sun.

Conclusion:

This is an excellent all-day moisturizer and sunscreen for normal to oily skin. The lightweight texture offers excellent skin protection for a fresher, healthier-looking complexion. The easily absorbed lotion will appeal to men who don’t like to feel a layer of product on their skin, but who need a moisturizer for dry areas and to rebuild moisture barrier to keep skin comfortable and balanced.

The SPF35 protects from harmful UVA/UVB rays and pollution, while antioxidants help to guard against the signs of aging.

This moisturizer and sunscreen is one of the best products from Lab Series and is far better than many other sunscreens available in men’s skin-care lines. One more positive, although this contains fragrance, the amount is low, and this doesn’t have a strong scent to it.

The one slight problem for me is the size of the tube. To use this as a moisturizer and sunscreen protector you have to be reasonably generous with the amount you apply for maximum protection, this means a 50ml tube won’t last very long, it needs to be a minimum 100ml size, and a little more cost effective would be appreciated! That said, this is an excellent product that I would highly recommend.

Have you tried Lab Series For Men?  How did you find their products? Please leave any comments or questions below, and I will be happy to discuss them with you.

jo@yourskincarehelp.com



 

Best Skin Care for Men – Maintaining Healthy Skin

male+website

In general, men spend a lot less time and money on looking after their skin than women do.

Fellas, it is time to listen up; It is just as important for men to use good quality products and to follow a daily skin care routine.

When it comes to skin care, men like to keep it simple. However, men are now becoming more conscious of their appearance and want healthier, younger-looking skin, so guys it really is time to step up your skin care game.

Best Skin Care for Men:

To help men develop a suitable skin care routine, we will guide you through the steps you need to take and advise you how to get the best skin care for men, and maintaining healthy skin. At first, this may feel like it is going to take forever when incorporated into your daily routine, but after a few days and a little practice it will add very little time to your mornings and evenings, but the results will be more than worth the extra effort.

Although there are differences between men and women’s skin – for example, men’s skin is thicker than women’s.

Men also have a higher concentration of collagen in their body; a lack of collagen is a sign of aging, as women have lower collagen levels than men, women’s skin appearance is 15 years older than a man of the same age – even so, the essential elements to using an effective skin care plan remain the same.

Know Your Skin Type:

Firstly, it’s crucial that everyone and these include men, determines and understand their skin type fully. Once you have managed to figure out what skin type you have, then the rest of the process will be a little easier for you to find the products that suit your skin type best.

Skin Type

 

SENSITIVE SKIN – This means your skin may be irritated or red. Sensitive skin can sting or burn after products with specific ingredients are used, and you may feel that your skin feels worse instead of better after using skin care products.

NORMAL SKIN – The least problematic and you usually won’t have too many issues with products, the pores appear small, and your skin is clear and has a healthy glow to it, and not sensitive to products.

DRY SKIN – If you have dry skin it can feel itchy, flaky and has a rough, irregular texture to it, and it may feel tight. Dry skin can also look red, mainly if you use products that have ingredients that dehydrate skin and irritate it. Your pores are generally small, and you wouldn’t typically have problems with spots or blackheads.

OILY SKIN – Your skin will always appear shiny and greasy, you may have problems with blackheads and white pimples, and generally have spots and enlarged blocked pores. Your skin feels oily and looks greasy during the day, even if you are not sweating.

COMBINATION SKIN – This is the most common skin type. Your skin may have both oily and dry areas. The area that is known as the ‘T’ zone, this is across the forehead, down along the nose and the chin can be very oily. Your cheeks generally feel normal or may be slightly or very dry. The skin around your eyes is usually more dehydrated than the rest of your face.

Products:

Read product labels and ingredients!

ingredients

When buying cosmetics, it is worth looking at the product labels and ingredients, this will help you to decide if there are any ingredients that are going to cause your skin to react when you apply them.

The skin care products you choose for your daily skincare routine will depend on your skin type. So, If you have Acne-prone skin, look for cleansers and moisturizers that say ‘oil-free’ or ‘non-comedogenic,’ as these won’t clog your pores.

If you have overly sensitive skin, use mild ‘fragrance-free’ and ‘alcohol’ free products, also avoid if they have Citrus in them, if you put anything on your face containing these ingredients they will leave your skin feeling irritated and dry.

Unfortunately, it is a fact when buying cosmetics you cannot always expect to find a suitable product for your skin straight away, what may sound perfect on the packaging, once applied may feel unsuitable on your skin. You will have to expect a little ‘trial and error’ until you find the most suitable cream or lotion for your skin type.

Wash Your Face:

Wash your face with a good cleanser.

So this is a no-brainer, but it seems that some guys are doing it all wrong or more realistically, just not doing it at all! Men will all to often take super hot showers and use harsh soaps or face scrubs, doing this will make your skin dry and irritated, and when your skin is dry it will appear wrinkly and much older, not what you’re looking for, right guys?

It is essential to use a gentle cleanser for daily use, one that will cleanse the skin, removing dirt and pollution that can accumulate throughout your busy working day, and will hydrate while it cleanses. Remember to wash your face both morning and evening, and after exercise.

Shaving and Razors:

Most men shave on average five times a week.

When you are buying a razor cartidge that has up to five blades – the obvious thought is, if the razor has more blades the better my shave will be. That may be so, but something you should consider with these types of blade heads is that if they shave too close, you are more likely to get razor burn and ingrown hairs, this is due to the extra blades pulling the hairs below the skin a little too deep.

Buy the blade head with one or two blades, and the shave you get is more than sufficient, and you are less likely to get that nasty looking rash on your neck. By choosing a razor that fits your skin and how sensitive it is, your face will thank you!

Your facial hair will be softer directly after showering or washing your face than at other times, and this will give you a much smoother shave and less skin irritation. It is advised not to use water that is very hot, as this can lead to facial redness and inflammation.

Using a mild moisturizing gel or foam is key to providing a barrier of protection while shaving, so don’t scrimp with it, put plenty on for that smooth shave you are seeking! Always shave with a clean, sharp razor blade. If you continue to use a blade more than five times, you can expect to have irritated skin and ‘razor burn’ which can be very painful and look nasty on your skin!

shaving set

Don’t be in a rush when you shave, give it a little extra time and you will see the benefits afterward. Shave in short strokes, do not stretch your skin taut while shaving, follow the direction of the hair growth, remember to rinse your razor blade regularly during shaving to stop the blades getting clogged up, and thus giving the less than perfect shave that you are seeking.

After your shave, rinse with cool fresh water to soothe your skin, this will also help to prevent ingrown hairs.

Rinsing your face with cold water causes the blood vessels on the skin to contract, this helps to reduce swelling and any bleeding you may have from the small skin tears.

You should ‘pat’ dry your face with a clean towel, do not rub dry as your skin will be quite sensitive at this point.

So, after your shave those hair follicles are open – you should now apply a product that both hydrates and soothes the skin and helps to prevent irritation and red blotches, this will also help to calm the skin post-shave.

There are four main types of Aftershave:

LS Razor Burn
   Razor Burn Relief Ultra Review

Lotion – These tend to have a bit of an extra kick them. The scent can be strong enough to take the place of a cologne. Lotions/Creams work as a skin toner and help tighten up the pores when applied after shaving. These also work well for people who have oily skin.

Gels – There isn’t much difference between gels and creams, but gels do wonders for cooling down your skin and reduce the potential ‘burning’ feeling that shaving can cause. Skin absorbs the gel rather quickly, the downside to the skin absorbing gel so rapidly is your skin has less moisture in it and may have a tight, dry feeling after being applied.

Splash – Often alcohol-based, this type of aftershave can act as an antiseptic and works well for those who are prone to cuts and nicks when shaving, but it does tighten and dry out the skin.

Balm – A hydrating lotion with a mild scent that fades quickly after applying to your face. Most balms do not have any alcohol in the ingredients so are suitable for those with sensitive skin, and are great at reducing the effects of razor burn.

The routine, once I have finished shaving, is to apply ‘Soothe and Smooth by Paula’s Choice’ all over my face using a cotton pad. Once the ‘Soothe and Smooth’ is completely absorbed, I apply a generous amount of ‘Lab Series Razor Burn Relief Ultra’ all over the shaved area of my face. My face feels moisturized, calmed and soothed afterward, and this has also helped tremendously with post-shave irritation and redness. I do feel that ‘Paula’s Choice Soothe and Smooth’ is the foundation of my post shave routine and an excellent compliment with ‘Lab Series Razor Burn Relief Ultra,’ I highly recommended both products.

One of these options will be suitable for you depending on your skin type. For those who have sensitive skin, look for aftershaves that are free of parabens, and don’t contain any alcohol, fragrances or irritants like menthol and lemon oil, which could potentially cause breakouts and redness.

Face Moisturizer with SPF:

Men pay very little attention to moisturizing their facial skin, in fact, of all the things that men view as a ‘girly’ thing, it is probably moisturizing that comes out on top!

However, what turns the girls on more than anything is when faces touch, and it doesn’t feel like sandpaper rubbing against their face but nice, smooth soft skin, take note guys!
So, moisturizing your face morning and evening will help you achieve that soft, kissable skin.

Moisturizer works by retaining water in your skin, which can help reduce fine lines and give your skin a brighter, younger appearance. For the best results, you should apply moisturizer to your face and body immediately after bathing, showering or shaving.

LS SPF35
Day Rescue SPF35 Review

When you apply your Daily Face Moisturiser in the morning, it must have SPF – Sun Protection Factor in it, preferably with SPF30+ (never leave home without applying sunscreen) this will give you both a daily sunscreen and an advanced facial treatment. With SPF you will get UVA and UVB, and a good quality product will provide protection plus the added bonus of antioxidants to help shield skin from premature aging due to the sun.

Men who don’t use sunscreen not only increase the risk of getting sun damage, your face will develop a red, almost ‘angry’ appearance, skin irritation, additional blood vessels may appear, all of this could increase the risk of skin cancer. We all want to stay forever young, or as close to it as possible, so apply sunscreen every single day.

With the advance in cosmetic products, you will hardly feel that you have anything on your skin when moisturizer is applied, and it won’t be visible, so don’t worry about your ‘manly’ appearance. Look for something that is a lightweight moisturizer as this is ideal for daily use, and it will visibly improve the appearance of your skin and provides lasting hydration, you can also look for a moisturizer that won’t make your skin appear too oily.

As you will be looking for Fragrance-free products not to irritate your skin, there is no feminine smell to worry about, so applying moisturizer won’t be considered ‘girly.’

Night Moisturizer:

male face - cream

After you evening shower and shave the last step of your daily skin care routine is to apply a ‘night moisturizer.’ The moisturizer you apply is different from the one you use in the morning as it doesn’t have the SPF in it.

Again you are looking for a fragrant free and non-greasy cream that provides fast, lasting hydration for your skin, it calms sensitive skin and helps reduce redness and irritation.

The benefits of a night moisturizer are that it will help to repair and replenish the skin’s natural protective barrier that is needed after all the exertions of a busy day; it should be applied to a clean face and neck about 20 minutes before going to bed to allow it to be absorbed.

Guys, another thing to do after your evening shower is to check your skin regularly. You need to be aware of any new spots or moles that start to itch, bleed or change color, as these are often early warning signs of skin cancer. Do not ignore early warning signs, If you notice anything suspicious, make an appointment to see a dermatologist. Men over the age of 50 have a higher risk of developing melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer. However, when caught in the early stages, skin cancer is highly treatable.

Exfoliate: – Best Way to Exfoliate Your Face

Exfoliate is a word that many guys would not have heard of, and it is entirely possible it is something they have never carried out as part of their skincare routine.

Exfoliating is an important way to keep your skin smooth and radiant. It’s like giving your face or body a helping hand to clear away its dead skin, and this makes way for younger cells to come through and give the skin surface a fresh, radiant appearance.

Exfoliating isn’t something that needs to be done daily, for most people 2 or 3 times a week is sufficient.

If at all possible try to Exfoliate in the morning: Your skin renews itself overnight, so exfoliate your skin in the morning to clear away any dead skin.

There are two ways to Exfoliate your face, one is to use a ‘chemical’ exfoliator, and the other is to use a ‘Scrub’ exfoliator.

A good example of a Chemical Exfoliator – PC Exfoliate 2%

Paula’s Choice exfoliator PC4 Men Soothe + Smooth.

This is a lightweight leave-on exfoliant, you use it post-shaving. Formulated with 2% BHA (salicylic acid), it is suitable for all skin types, and it quickly calms redness, helps to unclog pores and reduces raised bumps and ingrown hairs. It also removes dead skin cells, and this gives the skin a smoother and younger appearance. It is applied using a cotton pad and left to dry. Leave to dry before you apply your night moisturizer.

 

LS Exfoliate scrub
Face Scrub Review

Take care when exfoliating your face, mainly so if you decide to use a ‘scrub’ type exfoliator, this differs from the ‘leave on’ chemical exfoliators. With the ‘Scrub’ type, you apply the lotion onto a wet face and ‘work’ it into the face in a circular motion. Make sure you don’t scrub your face too often, and when you do, only ‘scrub’ your face very lightly. Rubbing too hard on your face and too frequently will cause more harm than good to your skin. The exfoliating beads in your product are sufficient enough to get the job done without needing to get too vigorous! Pat dry your face and apply your night moisturizer.

So guys remember, be gentle and use a light touch to massage any skin products into your facial skin.

Maintaining Healthy Skin:

So, I hope we have guided you towards the Best Skin Care for Men.

The critical thing to remember is that it’s all about consistency. Every man’s skin will deteriorate with age, but you can help to slow down the process provided you get into a skincare routine.

If you start while you are in your mid twenties, and have a good skincare routine in place, you will notice the benefits later in life, and your skin will look much younger.

Regardless of your age, there isn’t a better time to start looking after your skin than right now.

So, there you have it guys, this is your essential guide to maintaining healthy skin. Follow this routine each day, and you and your partner will notice a significant improvement in your skin’s appearance.

Also, keep a lookout in our Products/Reviews, we will be having a look at some of the best products for men’s skincare.

So, guys, what  Men Products do you use? Please leave any comments or questions below, and I will be happy to discuss them with you.

jo@yourskincarehelp.com


 

Clinique’s City Block™ Oil-Free Daily Face Protector Broad Spectrum SPF 40 Review

 Face – Exfoliate

Clinique’s City Block™ Oil-Free Daily Face Protector Broad Spectrum SPF 40

Clinique City Block SPF40
Buy From johnlewis.com

Here at Skin Matters we are always on the look out for products that not only offer the best value for money, but also makes your daily skincare routine easier to fit into your busy schedule, with this product we believe we have found a little gem.

What It Is:

High-level daily sun protection in a sheer, weightless formula.

SPF40 Protects against sun and environmental damage with broad-spectrum UVA/UVB sunblock and antioxidants. You can wear it on its own or as an invisible makeup primer. 100% Fragrance-Free

Skin Type:

For All Skins, even sensitive.

What It Does:

Clinique’s Super CityBlock™Oil-Free Daily Face Protector Broad Spectrum SPF 40 This is one of Clinique’s best-known skin care products, and it’s among the best sunscreens Clinique has to offer. Its effective overall formula means it gets excellent customer reviews.

Clinique’s City Block Oil-Free Daily Face Protector Broad Spectrum SPF 40 comes in an opaque squeeze tube with a screw-top lid. The product is a lightweight cream that gives a slight tinted tan but blends very well into skin without leaving color behind. It’s easy to apply to your skin and feels lightly hydrating; for those with very dry skin, you might find that you need to put on an additional moisturizer underneath to give your skin a boost.

The Super City Block formula has a lot to like about it, starting with the fact that this provides reliable broad-spectrum sun protection with a sunscreen that has the added benefits of both titanium dioxide and zinc oxide. This sunscreen also has a variety of antioxidants like chestnut rose extract, Matricaria extract, gentian root extract, and vitamins C and E. Antioxidants protect the cells from damage caused by these free radicals.

Research has shown that when you have antioxidants formulated into a broad-spectrum sunscreen, this boost’s its effectiveness in protecting your skin against UV and other environmentalfreeradicals.

Journal of Long Term Effects of Medical Implants 2004 and Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology 2012

Also, the opaque tube the sunscreen is packaged in means the product will stay stable in the presence of light and air.

Ingredients:

Active Ingredients: Octinoxate 7.50%, Octisalate 2.00%, Titanium Dioxide 5.20%, Zinc Oxide 6.00%. Inactive Ingredients: Water\Aqua\Eau, Butylene Glycol, C12-15 Alkyl Benzoate, Cetyl Alcohol, Laureth-4, PEG-100 Stearate, Rosa Roxburghii Fruit Extract, Citrus Unshiu Peel Extract, Porphyra Yezoensis (Algae) Extract, Hydrogenated Lecithin, Chamomilla Recutita (Matricaria) Flower Extract, Oryza Sativa (Rice) Bran Extract, Saccharomyces Cerevisiae Extract, Cucumis Sativus (Cucumber) Fruit Extract, Hordeum Vulgare (Barley) Extract\Extrait D’orge, Rosmarinus Officinalis (Rosemary) Leaf Extract, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seedcake, Gentiana Lutea (Gentian) Root Extract, Salicornia Herbacea Extract, Plankton Extract, Polyglyceryl-3 Beeswax, Yeast Extract\Faex\Extrait De Levure, Magnesium Ascorbyl Phosphate, Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate, Tocopheryl Acetate, Pantethine , PVP/Hexadecene Copolymer, Acetyl Glucosamine, Propylene Glycol Dicaprate, Caprylyl Glycol, Polyethylene, Caffeine, Isohexadecane, Methicone, Nylon-12, Zeolite, Lecithin, Polysorbate 80, Acrylamide/Sodium Acryloyldimethyltaurate Copolymer, Isostearic Acid, Calcium Chloride, Alumina, Polyhydroxystearic Acid, Xanthan Gum, Hexylene Glycol, Disodium EDTA, BHT, Phenoxyethanol, Iron Oxides (CI 77491, CI 77492, CI 77499).

How to Use:

You should apply to clean skin after using Clinique’s 3-Step Skin Care System.

Using fingertips to apply to your face, blend into your skin.

Apply this after you have applied your serum and moisturizers and before makeup.

Conclusion:

I have tried so many sunscreens on my face, but find that they all cause my skin to dry out as the day wears on, even the most natural and chemical free ones. Clinique has found the formula that works for me, this leaves my skin with a very comfortable feeling, not oily or greasy, but never feeling tight or dry. Also, the bonus is that it works as a light concealer which I love.

You can also use this as your moisturizer, as it has many ingredients that moisturizers with sunscreen protection have (like high, broad-spectrum SPF and loads of antioxidants) and the great thing about this is you can wear it under your foundation, or as a substitute primer every day, safe in the knowledge that your skin is getting great SPF.

It looks like a tinted moisturizer when you squeeze it out of the tube but applies very sheer, and it is very lightweight and smooth, it evens out my skin tone and makes it look more radiant. I find applying makeup on top of City Block very easy to do.

I’m confident that it will protect my skin well from daily sun exposure, and hopefully, it will slow down the aging process of my skin due to the high SPF. It is now an everyday essential for me.

I Highly recommend this product for both winter or summer use.

Have you tried any Clinique Products? Please leave any comments or questions below, and I will be happy to discuss them with you.

jo@yourskincarehelp.com



 

Healthy Skin Care Advice – 12 Steps To Great Skin

Skin Matters

When it comes to skincare, we should be less into the latest ‘fads’ and more into long-term benefits of doing what’s right for our skin. We should be looking at the bigger picture, take into account the whole spectrum of skincare and not what might bring short terms results but in the end long-term misery! So, whether you’re confused by exfoliation or pondering what ingredients get results, here are some words of wisdom.

Invest In Your Skin:

You can’t put a ‘value’ on your skin, so it is worth spending that little extra taking good care of it – that includes products and treatments. Skincare brands are continually developing, with new and innovative ingredients appearing all too often.

Chanel

Are these pricey products worth the extra cost? You have to be aware of the ingredients, and look for what is known to work in face products, for example, you would want to see Retinol, so much has been done to show the value of it, also Vitamin C, vitamin E, and antioxidant-ferulic acid have all been proven by science to work, to name but a few.

With so much research going into the skincare products, I do believe the more expensive items are worth the extra cost. Do be careful when buying some of the least costly cosmetics, of course, many are perfectly good products, check the ingredients, as you don’t want to buy one that is not so skin friendly!

Healthy Supplements:

The health industry has become saturated with supplements promising to give us a more youthful looking complexion, but as with skincare products, some supplements deliver more effectively than others, so it is wise to do your research before you buy.

Studies show how essential nutrients are for our skin; Vitamin C is involved in the synthesis of collagen, a crucial protein in making your skin supple, they are vital to maintaining a good skin quality. You also need to pay close attention to your diet as well as the supplements you take daily. No one food or ingredient will guarantee healthy skin; however, an inferior diet will lead to poor skin health. We need to love and nurture our body and give it all the support it needs to work efficiently.

Use A Retinoid:

Considered the ‘gold standard’ in anti-aging, you should consider using a retinoid (a derivative of vitamin A) if you’re after a smoother and more youthful complexion. Retinoids work to replenish cells, unclog pores and boost collagen, but not all Retinol products are of equal standard!

Doing your research could pay off, and if you are still unsure speak to an expert who will be able to advise you on the correct Retinol product for your skin type. There are many top quality retinoids, which deliver the active ingredients deep down into the skin where they are needed, you’ll be delighted with the results!

Beware Botox and Fillers:Botox:Fillers

We are looking to enhance our natural beauty, with non-invasive treatments. Be wary of using Botox or fillers – you can become addicted to them very quickly, and before you know it, they change your identity.

Consider all other treatments and products before you consider any injections! The results might be just as good for your skin, and your overall well-being but without invasive measures.

Facial Massage:

Facial massage is not new, but it quite often gets forgotten. We are more than happy to treat our body to a massage, so why don’t we treat our face? Our facial muscles are continually moving, and could benefit from gentle finger pressure in the right places! By giving yourself a facial massage, it can encourage detoxification, and lymphatic drainage, which can reduce inflammation and swelling.

A good technique that you can use when applying your moisturizer is to put the palms of the hands flat on your forehead, and working all the way down the cheeks and neck then rolling back up; it is very soothing and relaxing.

Prevent UV Damage:

I will always advise people to apply SPF on a daily basis, it is one of the most important steps of your skincare routine, you should never leave home without applying it to your face. Sunscreen formulas continue to improve, and today you can buy sunscreens that do not have a heavy texture feel to them when applied to the skin.

I also understand it’s not for everyone, some people don’t like to apply sunscreen directly to the face, an option is to apply a moisturizer first and follow it with your sunscreen. For the ladies it can be difficult to apply your makeup afterwards, some sunscreens do ‘ball’ up making it difficult to get a nice smooth look. My advice would be to use a moisturizer or serum with Sun Protection Factor included in it, and use makeup that also has SPF in it, this allows you to layer products to build up the sun protection.UVA Damaged Skin

What ever way you do, it is so important to do all that you can to reduce the number of UV rays penetrating the skin and causing skin damage, also try to limit the time you spend in direct sunlight. Nothing ages the skin faster than sun damage, be warned!

Read more on Sun Care for the Face

Treatment For Redness:

People who suffer from rosacea, and facial redness, that usually affects the cheeks, nose, and chin, just going about your daily life can be incredibly taxing! It is still not clear what triggers troublesome bouts of rosacea. It is essential to try to determine what might cause yours to react, some possibilities are certain spicy foods, direct sunlight, alcohol, and pollution, these are the more common irritants.

Try natural remedies to see if they help to keep it in under control, anything with a strong anti-inflammatory agent that has a soothing effect on the sensitive and over-reactive skin could help to calm it, such as:

Turmeric, Ginger, Aloe Vera gel (apply topically) Raw honey (apply topically)

Be Gentle To Your Skin:

The most common mistake that women who have blemish-prone skin make is to pick and probe at their skin continually; you must resist this temptation if you don’t want to leave your skin scarred. Also, you might want to consider the products you are using, are they causing your skin to react?Gentle on Your Skin

If the blemishes are making your skin feel sensitive, be careful not to strip your skin of its natural oils that keep skin healthy and balanced, as this will cause the skin to overcompensate. Women are then forced to resort to heavy camouflage make-up to mask over the problem!

Don’t Be Afraid To Exfoliate:

Traditional granular exfoliators have fallen out of favor in recent years. I believe that ‘scrub’ exfoliating is less popular due to the increased popularity of the chemical ‘peel’ method. However, under-exfoliating is a common mistake people with dry skin make. By not removing dead skin cells this decreases the effectiveness of your moisturizer as it cannot penetrate the skin as efficiently, so make sure to exfoliate at least twice a week using a gentle micro-exfoliator.

Read more on the Best Way to Exfoliate Your Face

Eye On Your Diet:

Our diet can affect the condition of the skin, so we need to be cautious of foods high in sugar, as these can increase location, a Fruit Saladprocess which breaks down collagen over time, thus accelerating the visible signs of aging.

Drinks can have this effect your skin also, namely alcohol and caffeine – alcohol can be very dehydrating, and too much caffeine is not good for the skin, making it look red and swollen. If your skin is prone to spots and breakouts, dairy and sugar are two things that you need to avoid to keep those outbreaks in check.

Stick To A Routine:

It’s crucial to have a skincare routine, especially when it comes to cleansing and exfoliating. One of the most common reasons I hear why people fail to keep up with their skincare routine is that it seems to take forever, and involves lots of products and repetitiveness; well, we do like to over complicate things, keeping it simple can be just as effective! Use multi-functional products when you can to help cut down on time spent in front of the mirror.

Hygiene is Key:Refresh

A simple thing like changing your pillowcase every second day has to become one of your ‘good’ habits! It is something I always advise people; good personal hygiene has to go hand in hand with a good skincare routine. Why spend all that time in the evening cleansing and moisturizing only to go bed and lay on a pillowcase with lotions embedded on it a week old!

All the effort you are putting in to look after your skin will be worth it in the long run. Keep up the excellent work.

Do you follow a strict skin care routine? Please leave any comments or questions below, and I will be happy to discuss them with you.

jo@yourskincarehelp.com


 

Clarisonic MIA 2 Facial Cleanser Review

clarisonic

Clarisonic Mia 2 Face Cleansing Device

Clarisonic Mia2 side
Buy From Amazon

Introducing:

The Clarisonic Mia 2 has two speeds, one-minute pulsing T-Timer®. The Clarisonic Mia 2 comes with its own protective travel case, allowing you to have beautiful looking skin at home and on-the-go.

After just 60 seconds, the oscillating bristles clear 6 times more makeup, dirt and sebum than using cleanser on its own. It is so gentle it can use twice a day for any skin type.

Clarisonic Technology:

A Cleansing Breakthrough:

Deep cleansing of the face is the first step to a healthy skin care routine. The patented Clarisonic Sonic Cleansing Brush uses a sonic frequency of more than 300 movements per second.

This helps to cleanse the skin far more effectively and thoroughly, yet more gently than traditional superficial cleansing or simple rotating brushes. The result is noticeably smoother, more radiant looking skin.

Effortless Cleansing:

      • 94% of people who used the Clarisonic Mia 2 said it made their skin softer
      • Cleanses 6 times better than manual cleansing
      • 61% greater absorption of Vitamin C after use
      • 2-speed settings – Delicate and Universal
      • 90% of people said their skin felt more radiant after using the Clarisonic Mia 2 Facial Cleanser.
      • It comes with a range of interchangeable brush head

     

Clarisonic Mia2 in box

Prepare your skin for your beauty regime:

The Clarisonic Mia 2 helps to cleanse your skin thoroughly and prepares it for the creams you want to apply. The Clarisonic Mia 2 allows you to get more from your moisturizers and serums, by enabling better absorption on the skin.

The built-in T-Timer is easy to operate and ensures you use your device for the recommended time on your forehead for 20 seconds, your chin/nose for 20 seconds and finally your cheeks for just 10 seconds each. By following the pulse, you will know precisely when it is time to move on to the next area.

Clarisonic

Smart technology, with visible results:

It works by using a patented micro-massage motion, the Clarisonic Mia 2 works with the skins natural elasticity, and removes the build-up of impurities such as pollutants, bacteria, and oils.

Also, the Mia 2 will unclog pores and help clear your skin of blackheads. Even the most sensitive skin is taken care of with no chemicals or harsh abrasives involved.

Conclusion:

The Clarisonic Mia 2 is definitely an investment product. Personally, I’ve been using Mia 2 for just over three months now, and the overall appearance of my skin has improved dramatically.

There is a range of brushes that you can use, the Deep Pore brush head I use once-a-week for exfoliation. I switch over to the Sensitive high-performance brush head for daily use, as its not so severe, and the better option for everyday use.

When you use it, do not press it hard into your skin, just add your preferred gel cleanser, then let the device glide over your face, and it will do the work, you just need to guide it.

There is a timer that beeps to indicate how long you should stay in one facial zone and when to switch — from your forehead to your nose, cheeks, and chin.

My skin has definitely benefited from using the Mia 2, it feels brighter, cleaner, and looks healthier since I have regularly been exfoliating, and cleansing more deeply with the suitable  brush.

And from reviews I have been reading, I see that many people have seen good results from regular use.

I would definitely recommend buying it as an essential part of your skincare routine.

Have you used any Clarisonic Products? Please leave any comments or questions below, and I will be happy to discuss them with you.

jo@yourskincarehelp.com

 



 

Paula’s Choice – Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid Exfoliant Review

Paula's Choice Skincare

P C Screen

Face – Exfoliate

Paula’s Choice – Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid Exfoliant

P.C BHA
Buy From Paula’s Choice

What It Is:

Paula’s Choice Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid Exfoliant;

This fast absorbing liquid that removes built-up dead skin cells and fights blackheads. An award-winning treatment for skin that is prone to breakouts.

Skin Type:

Combination skin and Oily skin.

What It Does:

When the exfoliant is applied to the skin, the liquid is rapidly absorbed; the leave-on formula is a gentle, non-abrasive solution. The Salicylic Acid (BHA) chemically exfoliates the surface of the skin, this allows for the removing of dead cells and unclogging pores, leaving your skin with an even and refined texture.

BHA (salicylic acid) has anti-inflammatory properties, and helps to reduce blackheads, blemishes, and calm redness.

With the addition of Green Tea, this delivers antioxidants to neutralize free radicals to provide essential anti-aging properties. While Methylpropanediol optimizes the effectiveness of the BHA and hydrating properties, that leaves a smooth, dewy, fresh finish.

You will find your skin is left feeling cleansed and decongested, with a clarified and balanced tone.

All skin types can use this product, but it’s particularly well-suited for those who have combination or oily skin that is prone to getting clogged pores. The liquid solution is easy to apply, and won’t feel oily.

As with all Paula’s Choice Skincare products, the formula is fragrance-free and Non-irritating, which is always good news for skin.

This product is Not tested on animals.

Ingredients:

Aqua, Methylpropanediol (hydration), Butylene Glycol (hydration), Salicylic Acid (Beta Hydroxy Acid, exfoliant), Polysorbate 20 (stabilizer), Camellia Oleifera (Green Tea) Leaf Extract (skin calming/antioxidant), Sodium Hydroxide (pH balancer), Tetrasodium EDTA (stabilizer).

How To Use:

Apply once or twice daily after cleansing and toning.

Lightly soak a cotton pad, and apply to entire face. Around the eye area caution is needed to avoid lower lash line, and eyelids.

Do not rinse.

When applied in the morning, follow with a broad-spectrum sunscreen rated SPF 30 or higher.

Please Note: Those allergic to aspirin (acetylsalicylate) should not use products containing salicylic acid (beta hydroxy acid).

Conclusion:

For people who have skin types that vary, you can use this on areas of your skin that are oily and prone to breakouts or blackheads, most frequently the nose and chin. Then on your forehead, cheeks, and neck, you can use the AHA exfoliant.

When using AHA and BHA products, give 2-3 weeks to see results. This will allow for the old skin to be replaced with new fresh, healthier looking skin.

Don’t feel you have to use any one product all over your face, go by what your skin is telling you and apply accordingly.

Some people say that AHA and BHA products can make skin more sensitive. What you need to remember is that you are removing extra layers of dull skin. The new skin beneath will be more sensitive to sun exposure. You combat that by applying a broad spectrum sunscreen SPF30 or higher every day, which is essential for healthier, younger-looking skin.

I would recommend this product.

Have you used any Paula’s Choice Products? Please leave any comments or questions below, and I will be happy to discuss them with you.

jo@yourskincarehelp.com


Paula’s Choice – Perfecting 8% AHA Gel Exfoliant Review

Paula's Choice Skincare

P C Screen

Face – Exfoliate

Paula’s Choice Perfecting 8% AHA Gel Exfoliant

 

 

P C Skin Perfecting
Buy From Paula’s Choice

What It Is:

This ultra-light gel exfoliant gently dissolves built-up dead skin to reveal a smoother, brighter, more radiant complexion. Formulated with 8% AHA (glycolic acid), it helps to fade signs of sun damage and corrects uneven skin tone while improving the appearance of wrinkles.

Skin Type:

Normal to Dry Skin.

Good for repairing Sun Damaged Skin.

What It Does:

Skin Perfecting 8% AHA Gel has a weightless gel texture to exfoliate the skin’s surface via 8% glycolic acid in a pH-correct formula. It helps to smooth dry skin and improve signs of unevenness. It is gentle enough for skin that has stubborn white bumps, and skin that is prone to milia.

The creamy solution works to remove dead skin, while Glycolic Acid promotes a smoother, more refined texture. It will help reduce the appearance of dark spots, and signs of aging, such and fine lines and wrinkles as a result of sun damage. Leaves your skin feeling softer and smoother.

8% AHA Gel is suitable for all skin types, people who have dull, uneven normal to dry skin will find it beneficial. It should be noted that using water-based gel textures, the finish could be somewhat sticky, especially if a moisturizer is not applied over it.

As with all Paula’s Choice exfoliants, this product is fragrance-free; research indicates this is best for the skin.

Ingredients:

Water (Aqua), Glycolic Acid (alpha hydroxy acid/exfoliant), Sodium Hydroxide (pH adjuster), Chamomilla Recutita Matricaria Flower Extract (chamomile/skin-soothing), Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice (hydration), Camellia Oleifera Leaf Extract (green tea/antioxidant/skin-soothing), Sodium Hyaluronate (skin replenishing), Panthenol (hydration), Sodium PCA (skin replenishing), Propylene Glycol (hydration), Butylene Glycol (hydration), Hydroxyethylcellulose (texture-enhancing), Polyquaternium-10 (texture-enhancing), Phenoxyethanol (preservative), Sodium Benzoate (preservative).

How To Use:

Apply once or twice daily after your cleansing and toning. Apply over the entire face, including the eyes (avoid the lower lash line and eyelids). Do not rinse.

For daytime use, always follow with a moisturizer containing a broad-spectrum sunscreen rated SPF 30 or higher.

Conclusion:

I have very sensitive skin, and I also have some sun damaged areas on my forehead. I began using this product as part of my skin care routine, and I am seeing a marked improvement.

It has helped remove some rough dry patches and even out the skin tone. The good thing is that I have not had any irritation, redness or over drying.

When using AHA or BHA products, you need to give 2-3 weeks to see the full results. This will allow for the old skin to be replaced with new fresh, healthier looking skin.

You must never forget to apply sunscreen every day, limit sun exposure while using this product as it contains Alpha Hydroxy Acid (AHA) this may increase skin’s sensitivity to the sun and increase the possibility of sunburn. I recommend using a broad-spectrum sunscreen of SPF 30 or higher.

This really is such a great AHA product. Makes my skin soft, smooth, and supple. I would highly recommend it.

Have you tried any Paula’s Choice Products? Please leave any comments or questions below, and I will be happy to discuss them with you.

jo@yourskincarehelp.com


 

Clinique’s City Block Purifying™ Charcoal Clay Mask + Scrub Review

Clinique Grey

Clinique Pink

Face – Exfoliate

Clinique’s City Block Purifying Charcoal Clay Mask + Scrub

 

charcoal clay mask+scrub
Buy From johnlewis.com

What It Is:

A 5-minute dual-action detoxifying – exfoliating clay mask.

Skin Types:

Oily Skin.

What It Does:

Purifies and polishes your skin. This dual-purpose exfoliator gives a delightful deep-clean treatment.

Natural bamboo charcoal and kaolin clay help to remove pollution and impurities, while natural silica beads gently refine texture.

Suitable for extra cleansing; if you have oily skin that can benefit from the use of a clay mask; City Block Purifying Charcoal Clay Mask + Scrub is for ideal for you. This highly absorbent and fragrance-free product helps make skin look smooth and refined in just five minutes.

Once applied this clay mask/scrub hybrid goes on as a medium gray shade that turns light blue as it dries, indicating its time to rinse.

You’ll feel the clay become progressively tighter as it dries, but once you rinse, the skin doesn’t feel taut or overly dry. This clay mask product would not be suitable for someone with dry, dehydrated skin.

Ingredients:

Water, Kaolin, Butylene Glycol, Silica, Magnesium Aluminum Silicate, Charcoal Powder, Glyceryl Stearate, PEG-100 Stearate, Sodium Methyl Cocoyl Taurate, Gentiana Lutea (Gentian) Root Extract, Laminaria Saccharina Extract, Tocopheryl Acetate, Acetyl Glucosamine, Sucrose, Caprylyl Glycol, Xanthan Gum, Disodium EDTA, Phenoxyethanol, Chlorphenesin, Iron Oxides, Titanium Dioxide.

How To Use:

Use 1-2 times per week.

Leave on for five minutes or until mask turns blue.

Conclusion:

Combines cleansing of a scrub with the oil absorption of a clay mask.

It will help reduce pore size and clear blackheads.

Leaves skin refined and matte, not tight or dry.

Works in five minutes and rinses off easily.

Contains gentle, plant-based soothing agents.

Fragrance-free.

Not only will it remove dead skin, but it also removes impurities and pollution from your skin. This allows for the new skin to appear with a healthy, glowing appearance to it.

When you are washing the mask off, you gently work it into the skin and get the scrub effect but without the harshness of some ‘scrub’ exfoliants, this is perfect as we don’t want to be ‘tearing’ at our face to achieve good results! The other thing I like about this mask is that it doesn’t leave your skin feeling too dry or tight.

It’s not a deep clean, but it helps to keep skin looking good, and it is an important part of your skin management program when applied twice a week.

The reviews for this product have been excellent.

I like that this product has a clean ingredient list, no added fragrance or irritants.

I would recommend this product.

Have you used any Clinique Products? Please leave any comments or questions below, and I will be happy to discuss them with you.

jo@yourskincarehelp.com