How to Layer Your Skin Products?

Skincare can be confusing. From the toners, the serums, the a.m. moisturiser, the p.m. moisturiser etc ….your skincare regime can quickly turn into a nightmare!

Layering skincare products

Order Matters, Here’s Why

You might have the most amazing skincare products in the world, however if you’re applying them in the wrong order, you will NOT be getting the full benefits.  In fact not only will incorrect application diminish the overall effectiveness of your routine, it can leave your skin dehydrated, irritated or with break-outs!

Studies have found that matching a good skin care regimen with a healthy lifestyle is the best way to slow the signs of aging.

Think Thin-to-Thick

So which order should product be applied? An easy rule of thumb is to cleanse and then simply apply products with the thinnest consistency to the thickest.

This generally insures that:-

1) The products with the most important ingredients penetrate into the skin efficiently (eg antioxidants & active ingredients in serums).

2) You will finish with the products that help lock everything  in.

Step 1: Makeup Remover

If you wear makeup or sunscreen during the day, then a double cleanse in the evening is a must (you can skip this step in the mornings). SO either use makeup wipes, micellar water OR another gentle makeup-removing cleanser.

Step 2: Cleanser (or exfoliation)

Once your makeup is off, it’s time to actually clean your skin. You can start here in the mornings. In the evenings, this step will also ensure that you haven’t left any makeup remover residue on your skin (where it could lead to irritations or breakouts).

Starting the day with a gentle cleanser (or cleansing mask) will ensure the serums and moisturisers (that are layered on afterwards) will penetrate properly. It will also allow for a smoother make-up application (during the day).

An exfoliation product may replace a cleanser in this step once or twice per week.

Step 3: A Modern Day Toner

Back in the day, toners were harsh alcohol-based liquids that often irritated the skin. However today’s toners are filled with gentle ingredients to help clear pores and add nutrients to the skin.

Step 4: Serums

Remembering THINK to THICK!

Serums are usually super-concentrated and nutrient-dense, to address specific concerns (such as general aging, pigmentation or dehydration). SO it’s important that the skins pores efficiently absorb serums first.

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See here for a good example of a hydrating day serum. OR here for more information on Retinol serum (for night).

Step 5: Lock it in!

A Moisturiser cream ‘locks in’ all of the active ingredients and hydration that you’ve just applied. Preferably use a am cream in the morning and a pm cream at night. 

The best time to apply a moisturiser is while the skin is still slightly damp, so theres no need to wait until your serum is completely dry before applying a moisturising cream. 

Step 6: Optional add-ons 

Eye cream , foundation, additional sun cream 

Remember thin-to-thick!!

Fortunately Rodan + Fields has made all of the above super easy

Rodan + Fields skincare products are based on a ‘multi-med therapy’ philosophy. This means using the right ingredients, in the right formulations, in the right order. To see real changes in our skin, it is vital to use high quality ingredients in safe and effective amounts and formulations.

Rodan + Fields takes safety and efficacy very seriously. In order to achieve desired results (without adverse effects), each formulation has undergone months of rigorous clinical testing and has a clinical grade 99.9% purity. Did you know that other ‘cosmetic grade’ products are only approximately 70% pure (with no audits) and often contain bacteria.

With Rodan + Fields Multi-Med Therapy, great skin and the confidence and self-esteem that come with it, are within your reach.  To find out which product line is best for you please visit the Solution Tool …..& Write Your Own Prescription for Change.

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Acne 101

Acne is the most frequently diagnosed condition by dermatologist.

It affects nearly 85% of people at some point in their lives.  Whatever your age, the psychological impact can be significant. People with acne can suffer from embarrassment and low self-esteem. 

The Cause?

To put it simply, acne occurs when the oil glands (pores) in the skin become blocked with oil, dead skin cells and bacteria.

Our sebaceous glands are meant to produce sebum, which is an ‘oil’ designed to keep the skin lubricated and soft. However, when hormonal changes and other factors cause the gland to produce an excess of sebum (OR thicker than normal sebum) the problem arises. The pore becomes blocked and there is a higher chance that bacteria will multiply, leading to inflammation and acne.

Acne usually starts at puberty when increased levels of certain sex hormones (known as androgens) create an increase in the size and oil production of glands.

Hormonal acne can return again in our 30’s, as our levels of androgen hormones increase. Testosterone (an androgen hormone) stimulates sebaceous glands in women to secrete ‘thicker’ sebum. This can cause clogged pores and an increase the likeliness of ‘adult Acne’.

ACNE CYCLE

One of the most common misconceptions is that breakouts form overnight. However, the acne cycle begins days or even weeks before blemishes reach the skin’s surface. The acne cycle starts when hormones trigger sebum production. The sebum combines with dead skin cells, which leads to clogged pores. When pores are clogged, acne bacteria can quickly multiply, resulting in inflamed acne blemishes.

What can contribute?

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  • Hormones! Especially during the teenage years and then again during perimenopause.
  • A high G.I diet – studies have shown that a high-glycemic index (GI) diet (refined carbohydrates like those found in white bread and also sugar) can increase Acne. It’s suspected that raised insulin levels from high GI foods may trigger a release of hormones that inflame follicles and increase oil production. Also ….sugar feeds bacteria!
  • Stress hormones – such as cortisol can increase inflammation and stimulate oil glands.
  • Family history.
  • Poor gut health.
  • Too much unfermented dairy, gluten and sugar – which can all cause inflammation.
  • Using the wrong skincare products – commonly ones that are too harsh and can breakdown our protective lipid barrier
  • Vitamin and mineral deficiencies (Zinc & Vitamin A).
  • Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) – This is due to increased levels of androgen (or ‘male’) hormones – testosterone and DHEA. Acne caused by PCOS tends to flare up in ‘hormonal sensitive’ areas around the lower part of the face.
  • Wearing heavy foundation. Some makeup can clog your pores. So while you might be tempted to cover your acne with lots of base and concealer, try to resist. Instead, consider a more breathable tinted moisturiser or foundation like Radiant Defense Perfecting Liquid which is non-acnegenic (so it won’t cause breakouts).
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Common Problem:- Why do I have dry skin yet still get breakouts??

It’s a common misconception that breakout prone skin ‘must be oily and therefore needs to be dried out’. When in fact dehydrated skin (common in adults more than teens) is often part of the problem, particularly with ADULT acne. A lot of the products on the market are in fact too drying and add to the problem!

So it’s important to understand the difference between dry and dehydrated skin. Skin that becomes dehydrated from over use of harsh products becomes more prone to bacteria getting in. This is due to a compromised skin barrier.

The key is to use products that will help prevent pores becoming clogged (with bacteria, dead skin cells and sebum), whilst keeping the skin hydrated at the same time. 

What can be done to help?

  • Topical Retinoids such as Retinol : which helps with the skins natural cellular renewal process. This can then help with acne and also wrinkles. Retinoids can be either prescription strength or OTC.
  • Suplementation with Zinc and Vitamin A.
  • Omega 3 supplementation – found in fish oil, Sea Buckthorn & flaxseeds clear acne by inhibiting two inflammatory chemicals that are responsible for acne breakouts, they are called PGE2 and LTB4. Omega-3’s do wonders for all inflammatory skin conditions.
  • Improving gut health.
  • Oral prescription medication such as short term antibiotics (and I stress ‘short term’ due to the disruption in gut health’) or in severe cases Accutane (a synthetic vitamin A derivative). Note Accutane can have irritating side effects and must not be taken when pregnant or breastfeeding.
  • Stress management
  • Gently Cleanse your face and body as soon as you can after exercise.
  • Dietary adjustments. Cut out unfermented dairy which worsens acne because it spikes the acne-causing hormone IGF-1 & can increase inflammation.A low GI diet (ditch the white carbs and sugar).
  • LED Light Therapy & Kleresca
  • R+F Unblemish & Spotless  – see below 

TEEN VS. ADULT ACNE

 

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R+F Unblemish

WHO IS IT FOR?

For adults who have acne and ageing concerns like dullness, uneven skin tone and texture, and loss of firmness.

WHAT IS IT?

UNBLEMISH addresses adult acne by drying and exfoliating, and reduces visible signs of ageing.

Clears current blemishes, unclog pores and reduce visible redness caused by acne, while preventing new breakouts from forming. 

The skin-clarifying four product pack is based on a philosophy of Multi-Med Therapy. This is all about using the right ingredients and active cosmetics, in the right formulations, in the right order. It’s a systematic approach and the results are guaranteed. Each regimen is designed to last 60 days and they’re backed by a 60-day money back guarantee – that’s how confident the company is that you’ll see results.

R+F Spotless

WHO IS IT FOR?


For teens and young adults, to help dry out and clear existing acne and prevent new blemishes from forming.

WHAT IS IT?


SPOTLESS is an easy-to-use 2-step Regimen that helps dry out and eliminate current breakouts and prevent future breakouts.

You can’t put a value on a boosted self esteem/ confidence. 

To purchase click here

 

Note:- If you sign up for PC Perks (Preferred Customer Perks) you will receive insider information, access to specials, enhanced customer service, 10% off all Rodan and Fields products, and FREE shipping. 

 

See here for more tips to control acne

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Victoria Isherwood (Registered Nurse / Dermatology)

Protection – A skincare step NOT to miss!

In a world where people are spending thousands of dollars on skincare products and treatments (for anti-ageing and pigment correction), it’s ironic that the most simple, yet neglected step is sun protection.

We know that the sun is a major contributor to aging skin. It causes sun spots, wrinkles, dullness, hyper pigmentation, broken blood vessels, enlarged pores, thickened skin and more.

Pigmentation is usually the result of too much sun, creating freckles, age spots or larger discoloured skin patches. Research has shown that it is one of the biggest contributors to looking older – equal to wrinkles.

Fast facts

The vast majority of visible signs of ageing or hyperpigmentation are a result of the sun …and its damaging UV rays. In fact, up to 80% of premature ageing is thought to be attributed to the sun.

Australia experiences some of the highest levels of UV radiation in the world (due to our proximity to the equator and frequent blue skies). 

MUST-KNOW FACTS ABOUT SUMMER SUN PROTECTION

1. What’s the difference between UVA and UVB rays?

Ultraviolet A (UVA) rays emit the same amount of radiation from sunrise to sunset, 365 days a year. Ultraviolet B (UVB) rays are stronger in the summer, especially between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m.

2. Are UVA and UVB rays equally harmful to skin?

Yes, but they affect it in different ways. UVB rays are responsible for sunburn and skin redness. (Think “B” for “burning.”) They cause inflammation, surface dryness and excess dry skin buildup.

UVA rays are weaker than UVB rays but pass further into your skin. They stimulate excess pigment, resulting in dark marks, age spots and dullness. UVAs also break down collagen and elastin, causing lines, wrinkles and sagging. UVA rays can penetrate glass, which means they harm your skin even while indoors.

3. What does SPF stand for, and how does it work?

SPF is short for “Sun Protection Factor.” The higher the SPF, the more protection. But exactly how long a sunscreen protects you depends on your skin color and its tolerance to UVB rays.

To get a sense of how long you can stay in the sun, multiply your sunscreen’s SPF number by the amount of time it takes your skin to burn in the sun.

If your skin turns red in 10 minutes without sun protection, your math would look like this:

• SPF 15 x 10 minutes = 150 minutes (2 ½ hours) without getting burned

• SPF 30 x 10 minutes = 300 minutes (5 hours) without getting burned

…but there’s a little more to it than this. First, no sunscreen can block out 100% of the sun’s rays. Since you can’t rely on sunscreen for complete protection, be sure to cover up your body and wear a big hat and sunglasses.

4. What’s the difference between physical sunscreen and chemical sunscreen?

The two types of sunscreens protect skin in different ways and have different properties. Physical sunscreens, such as zinc oxide, reflect and scatter light and are gentle on skin — which is why Rodan + Fields UNBLEMISH and SOOTHE sunscreens are physical sunscreens. Chemical screens, such as avobenzone, absorb light and blend well with more ingredients. Rodan + Fields REVERSE, REDEFINE and ESSENTIALS sunscreens are chemical sunscreens.

Whether physical or chemical, all broad-spectrum sunscreens should be formulated to protect against damage from both UVA and UVB rays.

5. How much sunscreen do I need?

More than you probably think! Apply one tablespoon of sunscreen to your face and one ounce — the amount that would fill a shot glass — to your body for adequate sun protection.

6. How frequently should I reapply sunscreen?

One application of sunscreen won’t protect your skin for the entire day. You should reapply sunscreen every two hours — more frequently if you’ve been in the water. This is true even if you’re using a sunscreen with a high SPF.

See here for another great product which contains SPF

Victoria Isherwood (Registered Nurse / Skincare)

contact / about 

 

Laser Hair Removal – The only way forward

Laser treatment for hair removal means fast and reliable, permanent hair reduction.

Laser hair removal is without doubt the most effective way to rid yourself of unwanted hair anywhere on the body. It’s quick, easy and offers instant results. What’s more, it’s a far CHEAPER alternative in the long run!

Over the last decade, laser hair removal technology has advanced significantly. However many beauty therapists and hair removal clinics are still using out of date technology, such as Beauty Grade IPL hair reduction. This is usually because it is a cheaper alternative than investing in the latest and most advanced technology.

Experienced therapists at Laser Clinics Australia use medical grade Candela GentleLase Pro and GentleYag Pro, the world’s most efficient hair reduction system.

Designed with sensitive skin in mind, these lasers are safe enough to be used on any part of the body and target different skin types – whilst ensuring maximum results. Candela GentleLase lasers feature a unique cooling device that helps to calm, soothe and protect the skin.

  • No more ingrown hairs
  • No more painful waxing
  • No more shaving rashes
  • Less expensive

How it works

The laser works by directing concentrated light into the hair follicle inhibiting the hair’s ability to grow without disrupting or damaging the skin’s surface.

These modern day lasers use a wide beam which allows the removal of multiple hair follicles at the same time.

Experienced Therapists will take your skin and hair type into account before creating a personalised treatment plan. Required treatments typically range from 6-10 per area, and the treatments are roughly 4-6 weeks apart.

The Candela GentleLASE Pro is designed to work for those with dark hair and lighter skin, while the GentleYAG Pro works best on a darker skin tone.

Laser Clinics Australia has the most affordable prices for laser hair removal and will beat any competitor by 10%.

Victoria Isherwood (Registered Nurse)

About / Contact 

Why Does The Beauty Industry Love Hyaluronic acid?

Have you ever wondered why when it comes to anti-aging ‘Hyaluronic Acid’ is at the top of the list??

Hyaluronic acid -is a molecule that is naturally found in our SKIN and connective tissue. This naturally occurring polysaccharide, acts as a hydrating and lubrication agent for our joints, hair, SKIN, nerves and eyes. The reason Hyaluronic Acid (HA) is so unique (and loved by the beauty industry) is because of its amazing ability to retain moisture. In fact in humans, Hyaluronic Acid is capable of holding 1,000 times its weight in water. This results in the binding of moisture in the skin. 

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Unfortunately our skins naturally occurring HA starts to deteriorate over time. This is due to general ageing, sun damage and environmental factors. Also, with age molecules in our skin lose some of their ability to bind and retain water. This not only causes dryness, and wrinkles but also a decrease in the skin’s volume.

A decrease in our skins moisture level is one of the main culprits of aging skin. This is why HA (which attracts moisture)—is a must-have when it comes to repairing the skin’s moisture barrier, preventing epidermis water loss and also restoring volume loss. It also helps retain collagen, and provide elasticity and flexibility.

Today, HA is incorporated into different anti-aging beauty and health care products — you can now buy hyaluronic acid serums and specialist Registered Nurses, Doctors and Dermatologist even offer HA in injection form (dermal fillers / Beauty Boosters). 

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Interestingly ….studies have shown that wrinkles and fine lines are usually more visible in low humidity compared to high humidity environments. This is because low humidity reduces the water-holding capacity and elasticity of the skin. 

Hyaluronic Acid Injections AKA Dermal Fillers

It is because of the depletion in HA (as we age) that specialists Registered Nurses or Doctors often inject hyaluronic acid fillers into the epidermis to replenish the loss of volume and structure. 

There are different types of HA filler’s ranging from ‘thicker / denser’ fillers which are used to mimic bone structure or restore volume to larger areas, and there are thinner / ‘softer’ fillers that are used to mimic softer tissue (such as lips). The longevity of a hyaluronic acid filler is determined by the amount of cross-linking of the gel molecules. The more cross-linked the product the ‘harder’ it can be and longer it will last. Typically Dermal Filler product longevity will range from 6 – 15 months.

There is also a more recent form of HA (which is combined with specific high quality skin nutrients) that can be injected more superficial into the dermis to hydrate and replenish. See here for more details.

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Note:- All HA injections must be administered by specially trained experienced Doctors or Registered Nurses only.

Topical Serums

Different brands contain varying concentrations and types of HA molecules. Studies have found that daily topical application of good quality HA serums can lead to significant improvement in skin hydration, wrinkle appearance and elasticity.

Victoria Isherwood (Registered Nurse – Dermatology)

Victoria Isherwood (Registered Nurse)

 About / Contact 

Keratosis Pilaris – Those annoying tiny bumps that can be found on the back of arms.

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Keratosis Pilaris is a common skin condition that causes patches of small rough raised bumps to appear on the skin. These tiny bumps (that look like pimples) are caused by a buildup of a protein called ‘Keratin’ (and also dead skin cells) at the opening of hair follicles. The condition sometimes gets referred to as ‘chicken skin’.

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The bumps usually appear on the upper arms (most common), thighs, and buttocks. Although less common, they can also show up the face. They are often accompanied with associated redness.

Those with dry skin, are more likely to have Keratosis Pilaris (KP). It may also occur in association with other skin conditions, such as atopic dermatitis / eczema.  KP is usually worse in the winter months, when there’s less moisture in the air. It can often reduce slightly in the summer months.

Although Keratosis Pilaris can occur at any age, it is more common in children and teenagers. It usually reaches its peak prevalence in adolescence and for some, may disappear after the age of 30.

Keratosis Pilaris results from the buildup of keratin which forms a scaly plug that blocks the opening of the hair follicle. Usually many plugs form, causing patches of rough, bumpy skin.

Flare-ups can increase when there is a vitamin A deficiency.

Treatment?

There is generally no 100% cure for this harmless skin condition, however there are ways to greatly reduce the severity and to prevent it from getting worse.

What can help:-

  • Use a gentle soap free body wash (soap can exacerbate dryness). Avoid lathering agents such as sodium lauryl sulphate which dehydrate the skin and strips beneficial lipid layers.
  • Use a ‘gentle’ exfoliator once or twice per week to remove dead skin (without irritating the skin and adding to the problem). A great example is R+F ‘Microdermabrasion Paste’.
  • Topical Retinoids (Vitamin A) help prevent hair follicles from becoming plugged. It also helps with skin cell turnover. However be careful as some Retinol creams are drying. See here for a recommendation.
  • LED or Intense Pulsed Light (ILP).
  • Creams containing salicylic acid, lactic acid, glycolic or urea which help support regular skin-cell proliferation. A good moisturiser will help prevent water loss from the skin (ie dehydration).
  • Laser hair removal
  • Eat anti-inflammatory food such as Omega-3’s found in Salmon, Walnuts, Sea Buckthorn etc
  • Avoid inflammatory foods (non fermented dairy, gluten and sugar).
  • See Gut Health
  • Humidifiers – add moisture to the air, which can maintain the moisture in your skin and prevent itchy flare-ups.
  • Soothe 2 sensitive skin treatment
  • See Skin Supplements
  • Avoid long hot showers which dry the skin out.

More on Vitamin A

Low levels of this vitamin have been associated with inflammation and acne.

Carrots are a source of Vitamin A.  HOWEVER the Beta Carotene (in carrots) needs to be converted into vitamin A in your intestines by gut flora. If you do not have the right gut flora it just won’t happen. See Gut Article. The better absorbed source of vitamin A is from cod liver oil and organ meat, particularly liver.

 

Note:- Women who are pregnant, or breast feeding, or may become pregnant should speak to their treating Doctor or Midwife Before taking Vitamin A supplements or using topical retinoids.

Victoria Isherwood

Registered Nurse

Dry vs Dehydrated SKIN: Is there a difference? And what can we do to help?

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DRY vs DEHYDRATED skin

Dry’ and ‘dehydrated’ seem like two words which describe the same thing. However there is a big difference between dry and dehydrated skin! To put it simply, dehydrated skin lacks water and dry skin lacks oil / lipids.

C314026C-AA54-4C14-8065-40AC3DD559FD.pngDehydrated skin is caused by not having enough water content in your skin, however oil production may still be present. Meaning – you don’t need to have dry skin to have dehydrated skin!

Dehydrated skin is common among people who have acne-prone and oily skin. Especially if they use strong skincare products that strip water away from the skin.

DEHYDRATED SKIN

  • Shows more fine superficial lines
  • Looks dull
  • Is thinner and more fragile
  • Prevents skincare products from working as well as they could.
  • Can be sensitive
  • Feels rough
  • Shows accelerated signs of ageing
  • Has decreased elasticity
  • Has a compromised lipid barrier, which means more moisture is lost and the skin is vulnerable to bacteria and irritants getting in. For some this can result in redness and irritation.

DRY SKIN

  • Feels rough
  • Appears dry and sometime flaky
  • also has decreased elasticity
  • Can have a pileup of dead skin cells which causes a loss of smoothness.
  • Can be itchy
  • The older we get, the less natural oils we produce.

 

How did my skin get so dehydrated?

Everyday life and the environment can negatively impact our skin. Sun, wind, harsh air conditioning, heaters and some harsh cleansers can leave the epidermis parched and fragile. In Winter, indoor heating removes humidity from the air which can cause are skin to become more dehydrated. Taking long hot showers in winter further exacerbates dry dehydrated skin.

Hydration

When you think of hydration it’s only natural to think of water. To hydrate something means to increase its water content. In relation to skin care, hydration means increasing the amount of water in your skin cells, which results in a healthy, smooth and plump complexion. When our skin doesn’t have enough moisture, it gets scaly, rough and dull—and can in fact look like the skin of someone far older. That means whether you’re in your 20’s OR 50’s or somewhere in between, you need to start making sure your skin is properly hydrated now!

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When our skin starts to look and feel dehydrated our first instinct is to slather on heavy moisturiser . The tightness and dullness may go away for a few days or so, but then we find ourselves back at square one trying to solve the problem. Drinking plenty of water will help, HOWEVER since our skin is the last organ to absorb hydration, using topical ingredients that promote hydration are necessary as well.

Moisture and hydration skincare products may seem synonymous, however these products do different things. A moisturiser tends not to hydrate the skin. Instead it forms a barrier to prevent moisture from escaping. A hydration product on the other hand – actually brings water to the skin. So, if you want to show off a healthy glow at any age, make sure you give your skin the right combination of hydration and moisture.

Active Hydration Serum

What order should Hydration and Moisturising products be applied?

Since the purpose of hydrating is to bind water to our skin and moisturising is to prevent the water from leaving our skin, it’s important that hydration comes before moisturising. This is why serums are to be applied first (think thin to thick) . Then once you get that layer of hydration on, you need to seal it all in with a moisturiser. This combination creates the perfect balance.

 For those with particularly oily skin, you may not need to moisturise as often. So applying a hydrating product may sometimes be enough. However this only applies if your skin naturally produces enough oil to prevent water from leaving the skin.

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A great way to keep your skin hydrated (and therefore looking younger) is with R+F Active Hydration Serum™. This hydrating, oil-free serum contains Hyaluronic Acid and 30% Glycerin to help defend against dehydrated skin. Why do we love this unique Hydration Serum? because it…..

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  • Is clinically tested for all skin types – even oily, acne-prone or sensitive skin.
  • Immediately hydrates skin to its optimal level, maintains it throughout the day and continues to build over time with ongoing use.
  • Incorporates 3D3P Molecular Matrix, which acts as your skin’s personal water reservoir, drawing and locking in moisture from the air as your skin needs it.
  • Is OIL free
  • Serves a totally different purpose than a moisturiser.
  • Is clinically tested to boost Regimen performance for all skin types.

The Science

The secret is the patent-pending 3D3P Molecular Matrix. The key ingredients are cross-linked Hyaluronic Acid and Glycerin. These are powerful humectants (aka water magnets) and are the two best water binders on the market. Did you know Hyaluronic Acid can hold 1000 times its own weight in water! Together, these ingredients attract and lock in moisture which subsequently helps nourish and replenish dry skin. Active Hydration Serum is not like any other product on the market. It self adjusts to your skins needs and your environment to address hydration in a different way. Most moisterisers don’t add hydration to the skin. They just form a barrier that prevents moisture from escaping.

Incorporating Active Hydration Serum into your daily Regime?

Active Hydration Serum can be applied before moisteriser and makeup. Because hydrated skin responds more easily to products layered on top, using Active Hydration Serum will also help to boost the visible results of other products.

Click here to purchase. Please contact Victoria to find out how to receive a 10% discount + free shipping.

Other relevant and helpful information-

Skin Masks

Look after your skins protective lipid barrier 

Skin Supplements

What NOT to do

How to Nourish Sun Damaged Skin

Victoria Isherwood

(Registered Nurse / dermatology / Skincare)

Victoria Isherwood (Registered Nurse)

Typical Skin Changes In Our 40’s + what we can do to help….

Life happens and somehow the years fly by. Then before we know it we are in our fourth decade.

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The changes….

Around our late 30’s / early 40s women typically go through a transitional period (which can last several years) caused by hormonal fluctuations. This period is often referred to as ‘perimenopause’.

Due to the shifts in hormone production (mainly progesterone and estrogen), perimenopause can bring about many changes. Unlike full-fledged (or early menopause), you DO continue to ovulate and you ARE still producing estrogen. In fact, your hormones will often test in the “normal” range.

Some of the typical changes that occur during this period of estrogen and progesterone fluctuations (and then decline) include:-

  • Skin Changes – eg …dryer, thinning, adult acne, rosacea, pigmentation, increased sensitivity, less elastic, itchy, lines and wrinkles & volume loss.
  • Hot Flushes
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Poorer concentration & also memory
  • Anxiety 
  • Mood swings
  • Night sweats
  • Increased PMS symptoms
  • Fatigue
  • Irregular periods – often short cycles + heavier bleeding.
  • Weight changes
  • Decrease in breast volume
  • Change in sex drive
  • Etc

Specific SKIN Changes

Changes in our skin predominantly occur due to:-

  • the multiple effects of hormonal fluctuations
  • a shrinking skeleton
  • decreased collagen production
  • accumulated sun damage over the years
  • Repetitive facial expressions over the years (causing lines and wrinkles to become etched in). See more info here.

Adult Acne:

Beginning in our 30’s, our levels of androgens increase. Testosterone stimulates sebaceous glands to secrete thicker sebum. This can cause clogged pores and an increase the likeliness of adult Acne.

……see ‘Adult Acne’ Article for more information 

Facial Hair:

Due to the unstable progesterone / estrogen levels + increased testosterone, some women may develop the odd sprout (or two or three) of facial hair, particularly in the chin area.

Sagging Skin and Wrinkles:

When progesterone levels drop (causing estrogen to become unstable), fat deposits tend to become redistributed. Fat pads in our face (which provide support and structure) diminish. Instead our adipose cells can become more concentrated around the abdomen, thighs and buttocks. Leading Dermatologist Dr Kathy Fields describes this as “fat redistribution from our face to our Fanny” 😳. The result of this loss of volume in our face, can be the formation of wrinkles and skin that appears less taut.

Continuous muscle contraction over the years, is another major contributor of facial wrinkles. Continuous muscle movement causes ‘dynamic wrinkles’ which only appear when the muscle is used, however, over time, if untreated, these wrinkles can become ‘static wrinkles’ which means they become permanently etched in our skin.

Thiner less elastic Skin:

Collagen is the supportive protein structure of our skin. It helps give skin it’s youthful plumpness. Skin stays more supple when there is enough progesterone …..which helps stimulate the production of collagen.

Sun Damage:

The maintenance of Melanocytes (cells that manufacture the pigment Melanin) is under the control of estrogens. As we move closer to menopause, the number of melanocytes in the skin is reduced. With less melanocytes, we produce less of the protective melanin and skin appears lighter. Our skin is therefore more prone to sun damage.

Pigmentation:

As estrogen helps regulate the production of melanin (pigment), melanin synthesis can increase (when estrogen decreases). This can then lead to brown “age spots”. These can appear on the face, hands, neck, arms and chest of many women. This is particularly evident in areas of our skin that have been exposed to the sun over the years. See here for more info on pigmentation and melasma.

Dry and sometimes itchy skin

Estrogen stimulates the production of oils in our skin and also our skins ability to hold moisture. So when estrogen production diminishes  – dry and sometimes itchy skin becomes common.

However it’s not all bad news, there it’s lots we can do which helps dramatically. If you haven’t yet whipped your anti-aging routine into shape, now’s the time—because it only gets harder from here.

What can help?

  • A healthier diet – a healthy outside starts on the inside.
  • Skip long hot showers which drys our Skin out.
  • Supplements – such as Zinc (can do wonders for Skin), probiotics (as gut health is linked to Skin health), Omega 3’s which help with inflammation and dryness, Vitex, Sage, black cohosh etc. Speak to a naturopath.
  • Sun protection +++
  • read previous Gut Article!!
  • See previous Adult Acne Article!!
  • Retinol (Vitamin A) based night serums – is anti-aging as it helps with collagen building and the rate at which skin cells generate. Amp up your results even further by using a dermal-roller prior.
  • Going to bed earlier – as lack of sleep can add to hormonal imbalance, inflammatory skin conditions and adult acne.  Aim for 7-9 hours per night.
  • Manage stress – as cortisol can trigger skin conditions such as psoriasis, rosacea and acne. Stress also robs us of progesterone.
  • Exercise – helps with circulation (blood flow to your skin) and also stress management. See previous article.
  • Quit smoking as it has been linked to early menopause.
  • Some people choose to get mustcle relaxant injections – these work to prevent the formation of static wrinkles by stopping the signal between the nerve and muscle. The decreased movement in the muscle places less stress on the skin helping to give a fresh and youthful appearance. Anti-wrinkle injections are made from a purified protein that temporarily causes facial muscles to relax, instantly softening lines and wrinkles and reducing the severity of visible wrinkles. Please contact Victoria for more information on Laser Clinics Australia bookings. Or visit the  LCA website
  • Hyaluronic dermal filler injections – once again, this is a personal choice made by some people. A dermal filler helps re-volumise and hydrate the face. Made from hyaluronic gel – a natural sugar already present in the human body. Hyaluronic can help restore fullness and volume in numerous facial areas. Visit here for more details.
  • See the Beauty Booster Treatment
  • Upgrade your Skincare Regime / Products – to suit your changing skin conditions. Visit the Solution Tool for further advice regarding which skincare products will best suit your individual skin concerns. 
  • Skin Treatments….eg Skin Needling
  • See ‘5 Of The Worst Things You Can do For Your Skin’
  • Progesterone Cream helps a lot of women with Perimenopausal symptoms in general. I highly recommend Ona’s Natural Progesterone Cream
  • To receive a discount on Ona’s natural progesterone cream use code : Vskin10
  • Vitex – has been traditionally used in Western herbal medicine for menstrual cycle irregularities and to help relieve symptoms associated with PMS. It can also provide symptomatic relief of hormone-induced acne. Visit your local health food shop or nutritionist for more information.

 

Victoria Isherwood (Registered Nurse / Dermatology) ☺️

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Are Your Skincare Products Eco Friendly?

Enspired by recent Earth Day! 🌏 

Unfortunately not all Skincare products are kind to the environment!

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Testing on animals?

Cruelty free skincare

Many people are surprised to learn that so many of the big name skincare and cosmetic companies test on animals. The good news is that there are some great great companies out there such as Rodan + Fields that are 100% cruelty free.

To find out more about which companies DO test on animals please visit:-

https://www.crueltyfreekitty.com/companies-that-test-on-animals/

The bad list includes….

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Microbeads and our Marine Life

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In bays and estuaries all around the world (including Sydney), there are billions of particles of toxic plastic called microbeads. Sadly these microbeads are killing our fragile marine life!

Unfortunately microbeads are a common ingredient in cosmetic and household products. This includes some facial exfoliators, scrubs and polishes.

These microbeads are incredibly small. So small, in fact, that most wastewater treatment facilities can’t filter them out. The only way to stop microbeads from poisoning our rivers, lakes and oceans is to stop them entering delicate marine ecosystems in the first place.

Microbeads = toxic sponges

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Microbeads function like miniature sponges, absorbing things like pesticide and other chemical runoff. In fact they are often a million times more toxic than the water they’re floating in 😫

Marine worms in our oceans ingest these toxic microbeads. The worms are then eaten by fish and other predators. Then if people then eat those poisoned fish, well… you guessed it, they’re at serious risk of falling ill from the toxic residue too.

To find out more about the devastating effect microbeads have on our marine life please visit:-

http://animalsaustralia.org/features/plastic-microbeads-poisoning-marine-life.php

🐠 Rodan + Fields Microdermabrasion Paste does NOT have these non-biodegradable beads in them. Their product uses sugar and salt to polish and exfoliate the skin (helping to get rid of dead skin cells).

Other positive facts about R+F skincare company 

🌏 The vegetable gel capsules from the Redefine Intensive Renewing Serum and the Redefine Lip Renewing Serum all start to disintegrate when they come in contact with water.

🌏 All the products come in recyclable containers and clearly state on them, “Please recycle.”

🌏 The company aims to empower all women…. even   Mother Nature

🏅 They just received the award (for the 2nd year in a row) of #1 skincare line in ALL of North America!! The  numbers and awards speak for themselves 🥇

If you’re at all curious send me a message, happy to share some info 😊

Victoria Isherwood (Registered Nurse / Dermatology)

The Anti-Aging Benefits of Hyaluronic Acid

Ever wondered why when it comes to anti-aging ‘Hyaluronic Acid’ is at the top of the list??

Hyaluronic acid (HA) -is a molecule that is naturally found in our SKIN and connective tissue. This naturally occurring polysaccharide, acts as a hydrating and lubrication agent for our joints, hair, SKIN, nerves and eyes. The reason HA is so unique (and loved by the beauty industry) is because of its amazing ability to retain moisture. In fact one gram of hyaluronic acid can hold up to six litres of water.

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A decrease in our skins moisture is one of the main culprits of aging skin. This is why this ingredient (which attracts moisture)—is a must-have when it comes to repairing your skin’s moisture barrier, or restoring volume loss.

Below is a summary of a great article written by the wonderful Dr Axe.

Hyaluronic Acid

So what is hyaluronic acid exactly, and how does it work?

Hyaluronic acid is a lubricating, clear substance that’s produced by the body naturally. In the human body, hyaluronic acid is found in the greatest concentrations in the skin, inside joints, within the eye sockets and in other tissues where it helps retain collagen, increase moisture, and provide elasticity and flexibility.

Today, HA is incorporated into different anti-aging beauty and health care products — you can now find hyaluronic acid lotions, creams, serums and supplements. There’s a good chance your dermatologist or cosmetic physician even offers HA in injection form (dermal fillers). Read on to learn why.

Hyaluronic Acid Benefits

Hydrates Dry, Aged Skin
Many people report that their skin feels “dewier,” the bags under their eyes become lighter and their skin texture is smoother after applying serums containing hyaluronic acid. The primary way in which HA helps improve appearance of “chronoaged skin” (skin aged due to sun exposure) is by reducing water loss. In fact, one reason that hormone replacement treatments sometimes cause the skin to look more youthful and less sun-damaged is because they increase the skin’s HA concentration.

Dryness, dandruff, thin lined lips, and fine lines are associated with aging skin because as we get older molecules in our skin lose some of their ability to bind and retain water. This not only causes dryness, but also decreases skin’s volume. Skin aging is triggered by both intrinsic and extrinsic aging, meaning daily environmental exposure to pollutants and UV light, along with the “the normal process of aging.” Studies show there are multiple sites in the skin involved in the control of HA synthesis, deposition, cell and protein association and degradation.

Researchers have found that stratum corneum dryness caused from prolonged sun exposure plays an important role in wrinkle formation. It’s now been shown that wrinkles and fine lines are usually also more visible in low humidity compared to high humidity environments because they further reduce the water-holding capacity and elasticity of the skin. HA can naturally help reduce the signs of aging by decreasing “epidermis water loss” associated with sun exposure, skin dryness or flakiness.

Wrinkle Reduction
Although most research shows that HA might take six weeks or more to improve skin’s appearance, some studies have found that anti-wrinkle HA serums can sometimes start to work within just two to four weeks of use. For more substantial anti-aging results, dermatologists now use prescription injections or formulas containing hyaluronic acids (including the dermal filler Juvéderm) to replenish lost facial volume and hydrate the lips etc.

Results from a 2014 double-blind, randomized clinical trial that appeared in the Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology showed that products containing hyaluronic acid effectively decreased the appearance of wrinkles within 30 days of consistent use.

Treats Sores, Sunburns and Wounds    

Aside from lowering the appearance of wrinkles and dryness, HA is beneficial for treating mouth sores, ulcers, wounds, bites and burns due to how it keeps damaged tissue moist. It also provides sunburn relief. Many cold sore treatments for the lips and mouth contain hyaluronic acid gel to speed up the healing process and prevent cracking or bleeding.

HA is part of the structural component of the mouth and the lips, which are made up of connective tissues made partly from collagen and water. Collagen and HA help give lips their structure and shape. Because HA binds to water, it hydrates the skin and tissues within the mouth/lips and keeps skin junctions tight, helps bring nutrients to damaged tissues, controls inflammation and helps fluids carry out waste.

Lubricates Joints    

Hyaluronic acid is found in all bones, connecting tissue, joints, tendons and cartilage structures throughout the body — especially a type called hyaline cartilage, which covers the ends of bones and provides cushioning. Because it helps buffer bones and provides resistance to wear and tear, HA is useful for lowering pains and tenderness associated with degenerative joint diseases.

It’s also found in another important part of our joints called the synovial membrane, which forms a coating over two articulating bones and produces synovial fluid. Synovial fluid is a “viscous fluid” that helps joints absorb shock, remain elastic and carry nutrients to cartilage.
Hyaluronic acid is now a popular substance used in supplements for treating osteoarthritis pain and injuries. It’s also been approved by the FDA for treatment of osteoarthritis when administered in relatively high doses through injections given by a health care provider. (3) Some research shows that lower doses can also be effective for reducing joint stiffness and chronic pain, although results seem to vary. The types of joint pains most commonly treated with HA include those of the elbows and knees.

Hyaluronic Acid Facts

The biggest advantage that hyaluronic acid has to offer is that it has a very high capacity for retaining water, whether on the skin, in the eyes or within soft tissue. HA is considered a glycosaminoglycan, which gives it its capacity to hold a large volume of water along with its high viscosity. Throughout the body, HA is distributed in many different tissues, especially in the skin, where it provides moisture and structure. The skin accounts for about half of all the HA found in the entire body.

Other body parts where HA is concentrated include tendons and joints, the membranes of the eyes, the umbilical cord, synovial fluid, skeletal tissues, heart valves, lungs, aorta, and prostate. HA is basically a very long link of carbohydrate molecules bound together that hold water and therefore allow for fluid movement and pressure absorption.

Over the past two decades, emerging research has shown that beneficial functions of hyaluronic acid include hydration, lubrication of joints, a space-filling capacity within tissue and between cells, building the framework through which cells migrate, repairing tissue and wounds, regulating activation of inflammatory cells (inflammation), enhancing immune responses, repairing injury of fibroblasts, and maintaining skin’s epithelial cells.

How Hyaluronic Acid Works:

HA has been referred to as “the key molecule involved in skin moisture.” In recent years, new skincare products have hit the market that contain hyaluronic acid, promising to make skin smoother, plumper, more even-toned and generally more “refreshed” looking. HA is capable of holding up to 1,000 times its weight in water — however, because the size of its molecules are relatively big compared to other acids, it’s never been easy for skin care manufacturers to produce a hyaluronic acid product that actually penetrates and stays on the skin.

Only in the past decade have scientists been able to create technology-advanced HA formulas that are capable of really seeping below the skin’s surface. Recent studies show that topical application of advanced (low molecular weight) HA serums can improve skin moisture and lead to significant reductions in wrinkle depth within just several weeks. HA is beneficial for reducing oxidative damage to the skin caused from both internal and external factors, especially ultraviolet irradiation (also referred to as photoaging).
• In addition to UV damage, researchers now believe that skin aging is also influenced by hormonal changes, including decreased production of sex hormones like estrogen. Decreased estrogen can result in collagen degradation, which leads to dryness, loss of elasticity and wrinkling of the skin (along with other aging problems, such as joint achiness and dry eyes).
Because HA is involved in slowing down collagen loss in addition to reducing fluid or water loss, it can also help improve joint lubrication, reduce pain, and treat various problems of the eyes and mouth.

How to Use Hyaluronic Acid?

• Hyaluronic acid injections: These are administered by Doctors or Registered Nurses only, so talk a specialist about recommendations if you’re interested in having HA injections.
• Hyaluronic acid serums: Different brands contain varying concentrations and types of HA molecules. The most effective types have more than one size of hyaluronic acid molecules, since various sizes work in different ways. Studies have found that daily topical application of serums containing around 0.1 percent HA can lead to significant improvement in skin hydration, wrinkle appearance and elasticity.

Final Thoughts on Hyaluronic Acid

• Hyaluronic acid is a lubricating fluid that’s naturally found in the skin, eyes, joints, fluid and connective tissue.
• Because HA has a very high capacity for holding water, it’s used in supplement, lotions & serums and eye drops to give structure and moisture to damaged tissue.
• Certain types of HA also have anti-inflammatory properties and help reverse collagen/cartilage loss.
• Benefits of using hyaluronic acid including firming aging skin, reducing achy joints, moisturizing wounds and rewetting dry eyes.

This is a summarised version of Dr Axe’s article. The full article an be found at  https://draxe.com/hyaluronic-acid/

Note:- Hyaluronic Acid is one of the secret ingredients in R+F’s Active Hydration Serum. Click here to order.

Victoria Isherwood (Registered Nurse) 🙂