Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Rosacea

Rosacea is a chronic skin condition, which involves facial erythema (redness) and vascular sensitivity. It affects upwards of 16 million people in the United States. While an exact cause and cure is unknown, Rosacea can be controlled.

Symptoms include:

  • Persistent and chronic redness that does not go away and is most commonly located across the forehead, chin, nose and cheeks.
  • Flushing or facial redness that will come and go. This can be accompanied by a warm or hot sensation across the area affected.
  • Pimples, bumps, blackheads and pustules may be visible.
  • Visual blood vessels around the nostrils and across the cheeks.
  • Hardening or thickening of the skin, often affecting the nose, called Rhinophyma. This mostly affects male rosacea patients.

While the exact cause has not been officially pinpointed there are many theories surrounding the cause of rosacea including- an abnormal immune system, blood vessel disorder, parasites such as Demodex mites or H. Pylori bacteria, and fungus.

Triggers that can bring on flushing or exacerbate the condition include: heat, stress, alcohol, cigarettes, spicy food, sun exposure and some skincare product ingredients.


It is important to be under a physician’s care to alleviate rosacea symptoms. Common prescription medications may include: Accutane (a systemic vitamin A acne drug), Metrogel (a topical antibiotic), Ciclopirox (an anti-fungal medication), along with many others. In conjunction with professional medical treatment, patients may find relief utilizing services performed by a knowledgeable esthetician. This could include the use of colloidal oatmeal, green tea exacts and tea tree oil. 

If you do not suffer from rosacea it is important to be mindful and compassionate when interacting with those who have the condition. If someone is having an episode of skin flushing, it is important to not point it out. Remember they can feel the heat sensation that accompanies the flushing, therefore they are already aware and embarrassment only worsens it!

Blog Written by askderm's in house Esthetician Chantal Monique
Chantal Monique is a NYS licensed Esthetician and Makeup Artist. She has 7 years experience in skin care and makeup artistry. Her specialties include makeup application and facial treatments, her work has included upscale clientele, a private investigator undercover and independent film work. Chantal also has a background in the Fine Arts. With the unique combination of her education as well as the desire to help people feel beautiful, Chantal provides expert skin care knowledge for our customers as well as the must have ingredients and trending looks. With an ever growing portfolio and clientele askderm is excited to be teamed up with Chantal for future blogs, informational videos and skin care tips! 

Friday, April 11, 2014

Beauty Shortcuts


Whether you are a young professional or a busy mom, this does not mean you cannot find time or shortcuts when it comes to a beauty regiment. So what if you do not have an entire day to commit to the spa! Here are a few tips and tricks for even the busiest of people.


Choose multi-tasker products! Use a moisturizer with an SPF, a primer with anti-oxidants, argan oil for cuticles and hair flyaways, or a product that can be used as a cream blush and a lip color.


Don’t have time or are you to tired at the end of the day to be using a mask twice a week? Multi-task and apply a mask towards the beginning of your shower, leave it on while you go through your normal shower routine and rinse it off at the end.


Think you do not have time to put on a full face of makeup everyday? Everyone can find ten minutes to apply mascara. Sick of people saying you look tired? Curl your eyelashes, this instantly makes you look more awake, pair this with a good coat of mascara and a nude liner on your bottom waterline and you will have everyone fooled that you got your full eight hours of sleep.




Skip washing your hair everyday. Washing your hair everyday is not recommended as it strips away natural oils. Only wash your hair every other, to every three days. This will cut down on the time it takes for you to get ready in the morning, because you wont be spending so much time blow drying and styling. If you have oily roots use a dry shampoo. If your bangs easily become greasy, tuck your hair into a shower cap but leave your fringe out while you shower and wash your face.


Skip styling your hair by going to bed with it wet and in a loose bun on the top of your head. In the morning let your hair down and part for a gorgeous tousled look.


When getting a manicure opt for gel. The polish is cured using a light and there is no waiting around for it to dry or smudging your polish while digging for your keys in your purse. Gel manicures also last about two weeks.


While some shortcuts can be made here are the steps you should never skip:

Washing your face before bed is a must to remove makeup, oil, dead skin, allergens and other toxins that can lead to skin issues. If you had a late night out or are just feeling completely exhausted, keep a package of facial cleansing wipes next to your bed.  Just do not make this a nightly habit!

Always apply sunscreen, everyday. It does not matter how busy you are, this is not something you can skip or only care about seasonally. Melanoma is one of the most prevalent cancers and it also happens to be the most preventable!



Blog Written by askderm's in house Esthetician Chantal MoniqueChantal Monique is a NYS licensed Esthetician and Makeup Artist. She has 7 years experience in skin care and makeup artistry. Her specialties include makeup application and facial treatments, her work has included upscale clientele, a private investigator undercover and independent film work. Chantal also has a background in the Fine Arts. With the unique combination of her education as well as the desire to help people feel beautiful, Chantal provides expert skin care knowledge for our customers as well as the must have ingredients and trending looks. With an ever growing portfolio and clientele askderm is excited to be teamed up with Chantal for future blogs, informational videos and skin care tips! 

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Introducing ACURE

I am not sure if in my professional career, I have ever been this excited about a skincare company, EVER! I have been a vegetarian for over half of my life. 90% of the groceries I bring into my home are organic. Lastly, I am a stickler about recycling- I even recycle the little paper tags off clothing I purchase! It makes me feel good when my work life can coincide with my personal morals that I practice at home. ACURE is a company with ethics. This natural and organic company has chosen a sustainable, eco-friendly and cruelty-free approach. Best of all, all of these good-for-the-people and good-for-the-earth products are completely affordable! Not one item is over 30 dollars.


ACURE is free from:
Animal Testing
Parabens
Sulfates
Phtalates
Synthetic Fragrances
Harmful Preservatives
Artificial Color
Gluten
Sodium Chloride

Benefits to Choosing Organic
Agriculture grown in this manor is free from toxic synthetic pesticides and other chemicals that could potentially enter our soil, water and our bodies. Aside from limiting your exposure to toxins, supporting organic practices may mean not contributing to the frightening bee population crisis. Choosing ACURE means supporting smaller family farms with strong personal connections to the land they are farming and love.

Other "Green" Benefits of ACURE
-ACURE is a Green-e certified company with a neutral carbon footprint
-100% of their office and manufacturing practices are produced using wind and solar power
-All the products are 100% biodegradable and break down safely as to not pollute our water
-The packaging is made from recycled materials and certified sustainable wood

If the “tree hugger” inside of you is not impressed, then maybe the science behind ACURE will entice you. There are two key ingredients in this line:

Chlorella Growth Factor (CGF): Chlorella is a single-cell algae rich in nucleic acids. CGF is clinically proven to protect collagen and elastin fibers, making it a key anti-aging ingredient. Clinical studies have shown that CGF increases collagen expression by 333% in a 1% concentration.

Curoxidant Blend: This blend is a combination of five organic fruits and herbs (Acai, pomegranate, black berry, rosehip and roobis) that are potent in antioxidants that neutralize free radicals.


My Favorites
While I have not tried every single product within the line (Trust me, I will get there!), these are some of my favorites so far:

Sensitive Facial Cleanser- Normally when I think about a fragrance free, mild cleanser, I think about something that is lack luster. This cleanser is anything but! It is so rich and creamy. I love this paired with a cleansing device like my FOREO Luna mini. I have oily skin but have issues using cleansers with salicylic acid, as they over sensitize my skin. This cleanser leaves your skin feeling clean yet hydrated with argan oil, probiotics and pumpkin seed oil.

Brightening Facial Scrub- Just like the cleanser changed my mind about fragrance free cream cleansers, this scrub has me changing my position on a physical exfoliant. I do not like scrubs, normally they are too gritty and they over-sensitize the skin. Nothing gives an esthetician an unpleasant twitch like an apricot scrub, ugh.  This scrub does not leave your skin feeling like you just put hundreds of tiny tears into its surface. It is loaded in sea kelp and contains French green clay. Because it contains clay, after I massage it into my skin I like to leave it on in the shower for five minutes. It acts as a mini-mask and pulls out impurities. I use this scrub two times a week so my face feels extra smooth and clean!

Oil Control Facial Moisturizer- This moisturizer has gotten me through this way-too-long winter. My oily skin easily becomes dehydrated, and while most moisturizers for my skin-type feel watery and pointless, this one is rich yet soaks in nicely. Lilac stem cells control oil production and help heal blemishes.

Cell Stimulating Facial Mask- This is a mask for everyone. It contains French green clay to draw out impurities, while adding moisture to the skin from Moroccan argan oil, CoQ10 and Sea buckthorn oil. Unlike other clay masks, this one does not require a lot of friction to remove. Add water to your fingertips and it actually begins to foam. Use circular motions as if you were washing your face prior to splashing with water.

Eye Cream- This eye product performs better than some 200-dollar creams I have tried! You get a lot of product in this tube. Even better, you can use it around the entire eye area, unlike some eye creams, which are not recommended for the lid. This has definitely improved the crepiness underneath my eyes and my concealer is not settling into creases any longer.

A lot of people make comments about wanting to “Go green”, but then proclaim  “I don’t have the space or time for a compost bin”, as if that is their only way to not negatively contribute to environmental problems. There are FAR more ways to limit your carbon footprint. Something as easy as choosing a specific product line can help! That is a simple choice that can add up if you think about how many bottles of lotions and creams are sitting in your medicine cabinet. For me, the money I am saving because ACURE is so affordable, makes it easier for me to purchase and prepare that organic/ vegan kale and quinoa salad I love so much!

Blog Written by askderm's in house Esthetician Chantal Monique
Chantal Monique is a NYS licensed Esthetician and Makeup Artist. She has 7 years experience in skin care and makeup artistry. Her specialties include makeup application and facial treatments, her work has included upscale clientele, a private investigator undercover and independent film work. Chantal also has a background in the Fine Arts. With the unique combination of her education as well as the desire to help people feel beautiful, Chantal provides expert skin care knowledge for our customers as well as the must have ingredients and trending looks. With an ever growing portfolio and clientele askderm is excited to be teamed up with Chantal for future blogs, informational videos and skin care tips! 

Friday, February 28, 2014

5 Reasons to Start Using Face Oils

#1. 100% Argan Oil is an amazing Multitasker!
Use it on your skin, lips, nails, hair & body!

Create softer, glowing skin by applying Argan Oil to your skin! You can also mix it right into your makeup or moisturizer! Don't forget your lips! A few tricks would be to apply a few drops to your lips BEFORE you get in the shower, the steam of the shower combined with the oil will reveal soft smooth lips! You can also use a small amount just before you apply your lipstick for better wear throughout the day. Use it on your cuticles to maintain healthy nails. Treat the ends of your hair with 3-4 warmed drops and see healthy growth as well as fewer dead ends! (I am OBSESSED - my hair is glowing now - who knew that was even possible!) Lastly -this is a tip that as a Mom of 2 I am proud to share. Use the oil directly onto any stretch marks you may have. I have found that the depth of my "proud mommy marks" have shrank & the color is actually fading as well. I am thrilled with the results & am not completely terrified of bikini season coming up!

#2. Celebrity Secret to Glowing Skin & Silky Hair
Eva Mendes, Salma Hayek, Taylor Swift, Gisele Bundchen & Kim Kardashian

There are many articles and photos of Celebrities endorsing the variety of brands out there with Face Oils. The main message behind them all is - when you use Face Oils - your skin GLOWS! A lot of the Celebs will apply the Oil to their skin the night before a big event as well as right before their makeup is applied. There is a bit of light reflecting properties to the product so it works in conjunction with your makeup to reveal even skin tone as well. You could look Red Carpet ready daily but using a Face Oil. Who doesn't want that?! Oh. Did I mention I use it daily & within 1 week had numerous comments about my skin. Yes. That happened.

#3. Great for ALL Skin Types!
The oil does not create more oil, absorbs & helps prevent breakouts!

Anyone with oily skin is going to freak out & NOT want to use a Face Oil. I get it. It doesn't make sense. BUT - it works. I have reduced my amount of breakouts by about 95%. Yes. I am not exaggerating. There are actually antibacterial bonus' to using Face Oil as well as an over "balancing" effect for the skin. Every skin type will notice your skin just feels healthier!

#4. They are PACKED full of Antioxidants!
They will smooth out existing wrinkles, reflect light & boost your SPF powers against free radicals!

Face Oils are packed full of Vitamin E, Essential Fatty Acids and some even have other essential oils included as well. Combining the power of your SPF with the natural protection of the antioxidants in the Face Oil you will be getting extreme anti-aging protection & instant results at the same time. Your skin will feel smoother and your makeup will glide on leaving you with a flawless finish!

#5. Supercharge your normal skincare routine!
After applying your normal regimen, before you apply your makeup, pat the oil on top to create a barrier to provide lasting results all day long.

Add a Face Oil to your normal every day skincare routine for added moisture, repair, protection & glow! One simple final step will help create a barrier on your skin to keep all the products you put on your skin penetrate better as well as seal in the moisture to keep your skin glowing all day long!

Stay beautiful.
dani. askderm bblogger.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Travel Like a Skin Care & Style Pro!

If you are lucky enough to be traveling anytime soon, or are just daydreaming about jet setting to Tahiti, be aware that traveling can take its toll on your skin. Here are my beauty and skin care tips for when you are flying sky high.



Hydrate: Make sure you drink plenty of water before and during your flight. When you are properly hydrated you feel less sluggish, and this will help you beat the jet lag. When you do not feel 100% it shows on the outside. The cabin pressure within the plane can lead to bloating and swelling of the fingers and toes, so opt for water and fruit, over soda and salty snacks.

Moisturize: There is almost no humidity within the cabin of a plane. That means the air circulating around you is pulling moisture from your skin, eyes and mucous membranes.

Apply a lotion or cream to your entire face and body prior to your flight and re-apply often while on board. Choose products with humectants, meaning they draw in and retain moisture. If you suffer from oily skin, don’t falsely believe that the dry air from your flight is doing your pores any favors. You still need hydration if you have oily and acne prone skin. Your skin will go into overdrive and produce even more oil to make up for the lack of moisture. While I am a huge fan of facial mists year round, there is speculation on whether or not using these mid-flight will lead to further surface moisture loss from your skin when the cabin air evaporates the water. So just to be safe, save your hydrating spray for when you arrive to your destination for an instant pick me up. 

Decreased moisture within your throat and nasal cavity can increase your chances of catching a cold or the flu. Viruses have a much easier time embedding into airways when there is less moisture and mucus creating a protective barrier. A saline spray may be a good option for those who are prone to sore throat and or nosebleeds during flights.

Avoid Makeup: Anyone who knows me, as a makeup artist and makeup addict will not believe I just wrote that! The truth is I have oily skin and large pores so I dread a public face sans foundation, but any time I have worn a full face of makeup on a flight, it looks horrific by the time I land. My foundation will crack and oxidize, turning darker because of my increased oil production, my well-defined brows will have faded and my mascara will have left dark smears on my oily eyelids. I suggest opting for just a facial moisturizer, BB or CC cream and a tinted lip balm, that is it! Just accessorize with an over sized pair of sunglasses and you will not feel the need for eye makeup. Keep a pouch of essentials- mineral powder, mascara, blush and perhaps a bright lipstick in your carry-on so you can apply after your arrival.



Protect your Hair: If you have longer locks, never wear them down during a flight. When your hair is down there is greater surface area for moisture to escape from. Treat your hair with nourishing oil and either braid it, put it in a topknot or a sock bun.  For another layer of protection wear a handkerchief or a silky scarf tied into a turban around your head.

Sun Protection: The debate on whether or not an aisle or window seat is better is very simple to me. I always request a window seat, not for the view, it is so I can pull the window shade completely down. While the rules of etiquette may not be set in stone when it comes to who’s arm rest belongs to who, it is cut and dry when it comes to the window- whomever sits next to it, is in control of it. Remember you are not on the surface of the earth anymore and the intensity of UV exposure increases with elevation. In your approved quart size bag, containing 3oz containers, there must be a sunscreen, preferably with an SPF of 30. As always choose a sunscreen that states it is broad spectrum or has a high PA+++ rating. Don’t forget to apply sun-protection to the sides of your face, neck, ears and hands as these areas often go over looked. Make sure your carry-on lip balm contains sunscreen. Those oversized sunglasses are not just for hiding your lack of eye makeup; they are protecting your retinas from damage and preventing crow’s feet.

These tips should have you feeling ready to embark upon your next trip. Your suitcase is packed, your skin is prepped and you will be departing with everyone wondering - Who is that woman with the headscarf, dark shades and GORGEOUS skin?!


Blog Written by askderm's in house Esthetician Chantal Monique
Chantal Monique is a NYS licensed Esthetician and Makeup Artist. She has 7 years experience in skin care and makeup artistry. Her specialties include makeup application and facial treatments, her work has included upscale clientele, a private investigator undercover and independent film work. Chantal also has a background in the Fine Arts. With the unique combination of her education as well as the desire to help people feel beautiful, Chantal provides expert skin care knowledge for our customers as well as the must have ingredients and trending looks. With an ever growing portfolio and clientele askderm is excited to be teamed up with Chantal for future blogs, informational videos and skin care tips!






Thursday, January 30, 2014

Men Skin Care - Keep it Simple!

With each passing year the skin care market for men is growing. What was once a minuscule section of aftershaves has turned into row after row of cobalt blue and gunmetal color packaging with bold type faces. So how do you choose what products are worth it and how do you break through the hype?



Men’s Needs can Differ

There are several common issues men deal with regards to their skin:

Oil and Acne: Sebum, the oily skin lubricant, is produced within the follicle. Because guys have more hair on their face, they subsequently can produce more oil. Men are more likely to participate in physical work that causes more sweat. If skin is not properly washed or there is lax approach to hygiene, bacteria and oil get trapped within the follicle leading to breakouts. Generally men do not see a reason to be as nit picky as women. Before you know it, you are in the gym on the treadmill, you have taken your germ-covered hand to wipe the sweat from your brow and have deposited bacteria directly into your dilated pores. Oh and that beanie or baseball cap you have been wearing for years? Yes it is the reason you have pimples across your forehead and hairline.

Folliculitis: This is a bacteria infection within the follicle. It is characterized by whitehead pustules around the hair accompanied by inflammation and can be painful. Severe cases are treated by a dermatologist, with the use of antibiotic or anti-fungal/ yeast medication. Folliculitis has a lesser evil but never the less annoying little brother, pseudofolliculitis, you know this as razor rash or razor bumps. This occurs when facial hairs start to grow curled into the skin due to shaving. It has the appearance of red bumps and ingrown hairs. Changing you shaving technique can eliminate this problem.

Dry Skin/Dehydrated Skin: Skin that is dry and tight can be genetic or environmental. Some people naturally have dry skin but many other factors can contribute to this issue. If while taking a nearly scalding hot shower, you are choosing to use a certain overly scented green bar of soap on your face, then it is no wonder upon toweling off that your face feels so tight and uncomfortable. Bad habits such as over exposure to the sun and smoking will also dry out the skin.



After 8 years in the skin care industry this is what I have learned about men:

They cannot be bothered by having to deal with far to many products or too many multiple steps.

Men are more likely over women to discontinue the use of a product solely because they do not like the feel or scent of it.

Contrary to the two points I just touched on, I embrace men as an important part of my clientele because men are more likely to be consistent when following an estheticians instructions. They are some of my most loyal client base and like to adhere to a consistent schedule; this same mindset can overlap into grooming and skin care.

If you are a guy interested in starting a skin care routine or you are trying to get your man into skin care, here are a few key pointers:

Keep it simple and multitask. I would start with only two products, a cleanser and a moisturizer. A cleanser needs to not only remove surface oil but help exfoliate, so choose something that contains AHAs, BHAs or a gentle physical exfoliant. Please stay away from cleansers that have large grit to them. Men tend to be overly rough and excessive scrubbing can lead to, or aggravate an existing condition. The moisturizer should be soothing enough for use post shaving but also contain a broad spectrum SPF.

While “For Men” products are formulated to be more quickly absorbing and to have a more attractive packaging, don’t discount the effectiveness of other products. If you have been secretly using your wife’s facial wash in the shower and you love it, don’t stop!

My Recommendations for Shaving:

Shave after you shower and not before. While in the shower the moisture softens the hair leading to an easier shave.

If you consistently have sensitivity to shaving, shave with the hair growth, not against the grain. An electric razor is another option for sensitive skin types.

Razors with five blades may be a bit much.  While for some it is the closest shave they can get, other guys find that the friction caused by multiple blades can lead to irritation. 



My Favorites for Men willing to go Beyond Just a Basic Cleanse:

FOREO Luna for Men- Whether you have sensitive skin or you are a gadget guru, this device preps the skin for shaving, helping you get a closer shave and with less razor burn. It takes the place of an exfoliant wash. Exfoliated skin appears more even in tone. It is less likely to have clogged pores and more easily absorbs moisturizers and aftershaves. 

Turo skin Daily Moisturizing Lotion + SPF 15- This lotion is a true multi-tasker. It sooths and moisturizes the skin post shaving all while protecting the skin from the sun’s harmful rays.

Obagi ELASTIderm Eye Complete Complex Serum- This anti-aging serum is in an easy to use roller-ball style pen applicator. The roller-ball remains cool to the touch to help sooth eyes. Caffeine reduces puffiness and tightens the skin making you appear more awake and ready to take on the day.

While getting some guys to even wash their face is a gigantic task, others are willing to follow some sort of skin care regiment. The bottom line with men is there cannot be major time and money invested to only yield unnoticeable results.  

Blog Written by askderm's in house Esthetician Chantal Monique
Chantal Monique is a NYS licensed Esthetician and Makeup Artist. She has 7 years experience in skin care and makeup artistry. Her specialties include makeup application and facial treatments, which were featured on ABC's Wife Swap. Chantal also has a background in the Fine Arts. With the unique combination of her education as well as the desire to help people feel beautiful, Chantal provides expert skin care knowledge for our customers as well as the must have ingredients and trending looks. With an ever growing portfolio and clientele askderm is excited to be teamed up with Chantal for future blogs, informational videos and skin care tips!

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Why Vitamin C should be part of your Skin Care Arsenal right now!

Dull lack luster skin, loss of youthful plumpness, age spots and uneven skin tone all have something in common besides making you feel less than confident about your face. All of these common beauty woes can all be treated with the use of one ingredient, Vitamin C!



Vitamin C is involved in the production of collagen. Collagen gives our skin its elasticity and plumpness. Over our lifetime the amount of Vitamin C found in the skin naturally decreases. Another way Vitamin C can keep us looking youthful is by preventing and reversing damage from the sun. This powerful antioxidant fights free radicals that cause cellular damage. Age spots are not because you are getting older, they occur because your skin was overexposed to the sun, and the cells responsible for pigmentation have been permanently damaged.

While some vitamins and minerals are better absorbed through diet, Vitamin C is a powerhouse when applied topically. Studies have shown that Vitamin C has about a 20 times better absorption rate when applied topically rather than taken orally!


What to look for when choosing a Vitamin C product:

  • Look for an airtight container that is opaque. Exposure to Air and light will break down Vitamin C, making it less effective.


  • Choose a product that has the percentage on the label. Anything containing less than 10% Vitamin C will yield little to no results from this antioxidant.


What to know when using a Vitamin C product:

  • While some people might notice a change in their skin’s appearance in as little as 2 week, give up to 8 weeks before you start to notice an improvement. Maximum results will be achieved after 6 months of continuous use.


  • Vitamin C (in the form of L-ascorbic acid) is a great ingredient to use on your skin post laser or microdermabrasion as it has anti-inflammatory properties and will prevent new skin discoloration.


  • This powerful antioxidant turns over cells and can lead to flaking, dry skin, so it is important to apply a moisturizer over a Vitamin C serum.


So, for that part about why including Vitamin C into your skin care routine is so important - imagine a glowing complexion, a more even skin tone with less fine lines and no hyperpigmentation.  A better skin care regiment, with better ingredients can have you looking your best by the time spring has arrived. Once this fresh face is achieved, you will be far less likely to revert back to your old bad habits. Those toxic skin habits, like unprotected sun exposure are soon to be in your rear view mirror because you are about to put your best, fresh face forward come 2014!

Blog Written by askderm's in house Esthetician Chantal Monique
Chantal Monique is a NYS licensed Esthetician and Makeup Artist. She has 7 years experience in skin care and makeup artistry. Her specialties include makeup application and facial treatments, which were featured on ABC's Wife Swap. Chantal also has a background in the Fine Arts. With the unique combination of her education as well as the desire to help people feel beautiful, Chantal provides expert skin care knowledge for our customers as well as the must have ingredients and trending looks. With an ever growing portfolio and clientele askderm is excited to be teamed up with Chantal for future blogs, informational videos and skin care tips!