Moisturizers help draw & seal moisture into the skin, strengthening the skin’s protective barrier. Moisturizers should be applied after cleansing and exfoliating,. To make things easier, you can use a moisturizer with at least SPF 30 and broad-spectrum protection (for daytime use), then layer makeup on top. If you plan to moisturize in the evening, you can use the same product. You can also try a formula with other ingredients, like retinol or antioxidants. All you need is a small amount, covering the forehead, nose, cheeks, chin, and neck.
A must-have product, sunscreen helps protect the skin from the sun’s UV rays, which may cause skin cancer and signs of aging. Apply every day after cleansing and exfoliating, and before makeup. Apply to cleaned skin at least 15 minutes before going outside (30 minutes before going in water), and reapply every two hours if you remain outside. Physical sunscreens (consisting of zinc or iron oxide or titanium dioxide) physically block UV rays from damaging the skin while chemical sunscreens (usually ending in -ate or -one) absorb the ultraviolet light, then break it down. Be aware that physical sunscreens are less likely to irritate the skin, but can be thicker and pastier.
Exfoliation removes the outer layers of dead skin cells, helping to brighten and smooth the face, even out pigmentation, unclog pores & reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. There are two ways to exfoliate: physical (manual) and chemical. With physical exfoliation, you use a tool, such as a brush, a sponge, or a face scrub, to mechanically remove the dead skin cells. Meanwhile, with chemical exfoliation, chemicals (including lactic, glycolic & salicylic acid) gently dissolve the cells.
When you’re ready to exfoliate, do it right after cleansing, either in the morning or evening. If you’re new to exfoliating , start with once a week, working up to twice or three times per week over time. If you find physical exfoliation is too intense, you can opt for a gentler chemical exfoliant (like lactic acid) instead.
Colloidal oatmeal contains beta-glucans, sugars that reduce skin inflammation and enhance collagen production in the skin. It can be used regularly and for long periods of time safely. It has also been approved by the FDA as a treatment for eczema.
Chamomile contains many naturally occurring compounds known to soothe the skin when applied topically. active ingredients deep into the skin for optimal skin restoration. You can brew a strong tea and make warm compresses, or throw a few tea bags into your bath water, along with sweet almond oil for a soothing soak.
Facelifts are invasive, Botox is expensive, and anti-aging serums or creams don’t ever seem to work. Well, move over Botox, there’s an anti-aging facial — often referred to as a “natural facelift” — that has burst onto the beauty scene, and it actually works. This magical treatment, known as a microcurrent facial, uses electrical currents to boost collagen production, tighten the skin, and lift the facial muscles. It is FDA approved, safe, painless, and no needles are ever involved. Keep reading to learn more about microcurrent facials and where to take advantage of this amazing treatment locally.
A microcurrent facial uses two handheld metal wands that give off electrical currents, one positive and one negative. It stimulates the muscles in the face and increases the production of collagen and elastin in the skin. Microcurrent treatments are safe and effective, as they have been around for years and have even been used in the medical industry to help patients with conditions such as Bell’s Palsy. Due to the electrical current, however, pregnant women and clients that have a pacemaker should not receive a microcurrent facial.
Retinoids are derivatives of vitamin A compounds that treat acne & reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. However, they often come with side effects including dryness, redness, flaking & irritation. Gentler, over-the-counter retinol can be found in cosmetic skin-care products like night creams, serums & moisturizers. Adapalene, a synthetic retinoid, is available as the over-the-counter drug Differin. Prescription-only retinoid acid (Retin-A) is more effective, yet harsher on the skin & available in different strengths.
Get started with retinoids by using an over-the-counter product it three times per week to see how well your skin tolerates it. If you can use it that often without any issues, you can increase your usage to three to four times per week. If you need something stronger, due to severe acne or signs of aging, consider using Differin or a prescription retinoid. Experiment with using lower-strength formulations once or twice a week, then consider adjusting upward in strength and frequency.
When using a prescription product, you must follow your dermatologist’s instructions. In general, using just a pea-sized amount on dry skin in the evenings after cleansing will keep the product from causing too much irritation. Follow that with your moisturizer or mix your retinoid with the moisturizer to help buffer it.
Experts caution against exfoliating and using retinoids together because both can cause irritation, especially when used one right after the other. If you want to use both, try exfoliating and using your retinoid on alternating evenings, or exfoliating in the morning and using the retinoid at night. Also, because retinoids increase your sensitivity to the sun, make sure you’re always using a broad-spectrum sunscreen with at least 30 SPF. Lastly, avoid retinoids if you’re pregnant.
Pregnant women must be careful about what they apply to their skin, as some skincare product ingredients are not safe during pregnancy: prescription retinoids, over-the-counter retinols, hydroquinone, benzoyl peroxide, and salicylic acid. Some of these ingredients should be avoided after delivery, especially if breastfeeding. Topical products like retinoids can be absorbed into the skin then excreted into breast milk or transferred to a baby’s skin upon contact.
Below are some alternative ingredients to address problems like acne, dryness and hyperpigmentations. Before using any products during pregnancy, make sure to get your doctor’s approval.
AZELAIC ACID: a topical used to treat rosacea that kills bacteria found in pores and decreases keratin production. It helps decrease redness and acne and reduces pigment production, helping to diminishd ark marks created by acne.
NIACINAMIDE: a form of vitamin B3 that possesses anti-inflammatory effects on the skin. It helps to alleviate acne and rosacea and its nonirritating nature makes it an attractive option for dry or sensitive skin.
VITAMIN C: an antioxidant replacement for retinoids that treats dark spots and general skin-tone issues. When used in conjunction with mineral sunscreen, it can boost collagen production and fight sun damage.
HYALURONIC ACID: an incredible, natural skin hydrator that moisturizes and diminishes the appearance of fine lines.