Tag Archives: summer skin care

Summer Skin Prep: Exfoliation

Why is exfoliation an important part of your skin care regimen?

Exfoliation refers to the removal of the dead skin cells on the skin’s surface. Our skin cells are in a constant state of migration and replacement. In approximately one month’s time, skin cells move up to the surface of the skin ( the epidermis), where they eventually die, break away from cell cycle

the epidermis, and fall off, making room for newer cells growing up from below. Therefore, the skin you have a month from today will be different compared to the skin you have now.

Our skin’s cellular renewal rate slows down when we age. This is because there is less blood circulation, less oxygen is delivered to skin cells, so they are not replaced as quickly. This leads to a buildup of dull, dead surface cells and rough skin texture. When this build up occurs, skin conditions such as uneven skin tone and texture, fine lines and wrinkles, and pore size enlargement are more prevalent. Furthermore, if your skin tends to be more oily, the build-up of dead skin cells can result in excess oil and clogged pores, leading to blemishes and acne.

Proper exfoliation removes the barrier of dead skin cells clogging the skin and uncovers fresh new cells below. This opens the way for serums and moisturizing products to penetrate more deeply into the skin, which makes them more effective. A regular exfoliating routine will leave your skin looking more vibrant and healthy. The type of exfoliation and frequency will vary by skin type, issues, and sensitivity.

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Exfoliators Explained:

There are 3 types of exfoliators: 1) mechanical, 2) chemical, and 3) enzymatic. While mechanical exfoliators physically remove dead skin cells through a scrubbing action, chemical and enzymatic exfoliators work on the bonds, which hold the skin together.

Mechanical Exfoliation:
Mechanical exfoliators include scrubs and micro-dermabrasion. Be careful to only use round, spherical beads in mechanical exfoliation or it can create micro-tears and worsen your skin’s texture. Do not use mechanical exfoliation if you have broken capillaries (teleang­iectasia).

Alpha Hydroxy Acids:
What they do: They cause the cells of the epidermis to become “unglued” allowing the dead cells to slough off, making room for regrowth of new skin. AHA may even stimulate the production of collagen and elastin. The following are the five major types of alpha hydroxy acids found in skincare products and their sources:
•glycolic acid – sugar cane
•lactic acid – milk
•malic acid – apples and pears
•citric acid – oranges and lemons
•tartaric acid – grapes
AHAs are reported to improve wrinkling, roughness and mottled pigmentation of photodamaged skin after months of daily application. AHAs are recommended for all skin types but note any allergies given the type of acid used. Gentle AHA exfoliators (lower percentage acid with the addition of calming actives) are recommended for mature skin types and for rosacea.

Enzymatic Exfoliators:
Enzymes have a proteolytic effect and induce superficial exfoliation on the cells of the stratum corneum. Exfoliating enzymes remove the dry superficial, dull skin cells by digesting the proteins into smaller fragments, preventing a build-up. The most common enzymatic exfoliators are naturally derived from pineapple and papaya. Pineapple contains bromelain; Papain is an enzyme found in unripe papayas. Enzymatic exfoliation is recommended for skin that has a thicker stratum corneum and for oily skin types. It is not recommended for use on sensitive skin.

If you choose the appropriate exfoliator for your skin type, you should exfoliate every week for best results.

Summer Skin Care | Top 3 Summer Skin Care Challenges and how to Manage Them

summer-time-skin-careJust as the earth has its seasons, so it is with our skin. The summer months, full of brilliant rays of sun, can bring noticeable changes and challenges to our skin. So let’s take a look at a three of the challenges most associated with summer time skin care and how we can manage them!

 

Challenge #1 – Excessive Sun Exposure & Premature Aging

The sun, in all its glowing radiance, is the key to life on earth. Sad to say, it’s also a major stumbling block in the battle against aging skin.

Excess sun exposure leads to free radical damage and inflammation that shows itself in the following ways:

  • Damaged  cellular DNA leading to the replication of unhealthy cells
  • Fine lines and wrinkles
  • Uneven skin tone and sun spots/age spots
  • Collagen and elastin breakdown
  • Skin sagging

Healthy, vibrant, firm skin doesn’t come from damaged cells.

What to do:

We have all heard by now to use sunscreen. This is a given. But, what else can we do to fight the effects of sun damage?

  • Antioxidant Serums – Serums are highly concentrated formulations that are typically worn under moisturizer/sunscreen. Look for serums containing important antioxidants like vitamins A, C, and E. Antioxidants protect your DNA and skin from free radical damage that lead to premature aging.
  • Pigmentation Control – Melanin producing cells are highly stimulated by sun exposure. Using a potent, but non-irritating melanin control product can help keep your skin tone even and reduce unsightly brown spots on the skin.
  • Build Your Skin – Choose products that contain powerful peptides for building major skin proteins like collagen and elastin. These wonderful skin-rebuilders can make a huge difference in fine lines, wrinkles, elasticity, and firmness.

Some researchers claim that 90% of premature skin aging symptoms are related to sun exposure!

Challenge #2 – Excess Oil

summer_skin_careMany of us, especially those of us already on the oily side of the skin spectrum, experience challenges with increased oil production during the summer months. The dreaded oily shine and potential for clogged pores and breakouts can be improved with a few simple measures.

What to do:

  • Adjust Your Moisturizer – As your skin changes with the seasons, so should your skin care. Select lighter moisturizers that hydrate the skin with water based ingredients but have minimal levels of light oils/emollients.
  • Control Oil – Look for products containing specialized ingredients to control excess oil production in the skin. Acnacidol is a wonderful agent for regulating oil production in the skin.
  • Clarify and Refine – Use silt-based masks once a week to draw out oil and impurities, and choose daily cleansers that effectively remove oil without dehydrating and stripping the skin. Your cleanser should not leave your skin feeling tight and dry.

Challenge #3 – Dehydration

summertime-skin-careDespite more humidity, and whether your skin tends to be oily or on the drier side, dehydration (lack of water) can be a problem during the summer. Hot temperatures coupled with more sun exposure can dehydrate the skin leading to rough texture and increased, visible signs of aging.

What to do:

  • Keep Moisturizing – Don’t drop the use of moisturizer during the summer in attempts at controlling oil. A better option is to alter the type of your moisturizer to suit your skin’s needs. Moisturizing adds a protective layer to your skin that helps maintain water levels in your skin.
  • Hydrate Your Skin – Hydrating serums containing ingredients like sodium hyaluronate can attract and bind water to your skin. Gentle toners can also be a useful water source for the skin (avoid overly astringent toners as they can be especially drying).

Quality anti-aging serums can offer both hydrating and antioxidant protection.

 

Products for Summer-Time Skin Care:


by Casey Durrett, LEI – Social Media Director and National Educator, SkinPhD