Do You Meditate?

If you are interested in learning about meditation I suggest checking out Meditation can lower stress, which lowers cortisol. This stress hormone is linked to skin conditions such as acne and melasma.

12 Steps to Thrive


August Special: The Dermaplane Facial

Does your “peach fuzz” bother you? Does your skin look dull, flaky, or dry? Is your make up not going on smoothly? If so, I would like to invite you to book a dermaplane facial treatment today! Using a sterile and disposable surgical blade, layers of dry, flaky, dead skin are gently scraped away with light, feathery strokes. This exfoliation will also remove the soft vellus hair that traps dirt, oil and make up on the skin’s surface. The old wives tale that “shaving” will cause the vellus hair to grow back thicker or more coarse is untrue of this specific type of hair! Dermaplaning is a safe and beneficial alternative to waxing, threading, chemical peels, and microdermabration. And, it is suitable for all skin types including ethnic, pregnant, sensitive, and rosacea. During the month of August, enjoy this treatment for only $55.00 (Regular price $75.00)


Is Your Sunscreen Doing More Harm Than Good?


Here is a link to an article I read in Skin Inc.Magazine on chemical and physical sunscreens. This article written by Rhonda Allison, the founder and CEO of Rhonda Allison Clinical Enterprises. Respected world-wide for her innovative work with acids and chemical peels, Rhonda Allison is known as a highly respected speaker, author, and educator who has worked behind the aesthetic chair for 30 years. Before you find yourself staring at the shelves of sunscreens wondering which one is best, read this informative article!

Is Your Sunscreen Doing More Harm Than Good? By Rhonda Allison

A few other tips I would add for sunscreen:

  1. Apply thirty minutes before sun exposure.
  2. Reapply every two hours. (Colorscience Sunforgettable SPF 50 physical sunscreen brush is the easiest to reapply because of its powder form. Who wants to put a lotion on in the midday? It easily packs around in your purse or car with a mess. Kids and men like it too! )
  3. Don’t forget ears, the part in your hair, and feet!

Getting ready for a photo shoot? Checkout this checklist!

I have been a make up artist on a number of photo shoots and runway hair shows. Here are a few suggestions I have to make sure your shoot or show goes well and your photos turn out better:

Do not get your hair colored the day before the shoot. Dye showing on the hair-line or on the ears that is difficult to camouflage with make up. Retouching flaws like this cause more work for the photographer.

Do not get your brows waxed or go tanning the day of, the skin will be too red for the shoot.

Polishing up your skin with a facial is a great idea, but because most people breakout after a deep cleansing, be sure to book your facial weeks before your shoot. Stick to a treatment your skin is use to, that way you will avoid any unexpected skin peeling or irritation.

If there is a make up artist scheduled for your shoot, come with a clean, polished face. Take a steamy shower and use a scrub, you can make your own using your cleanser and adding a little brown or white sugar to it. If your skin is really dry, use jojoba oil and sugar. If plan to do full body photos, scrub your whole body! You can also use a buffing pad or Clarisonic to polish your skin. Don’t be too rough though! The steam will soften the dead skin cells so they will bump off with gentle exfoliation.
Finish your face with a hydrating serum and a light weight moisturizer. Make sure mascara and eye goobers are completely cleaned up. To make your eyes look more awake, use some eye drops & curl your lashes. Do not pick at your face, blemishes are more easy to camouflage then scabs! Your body might need a light bronzing lotion but make sure that it is even in color and there are no streaks.

If your hair is also going to be styled at the shoot, do not wash it day of. Hair styles more easily if it’s a little dirty but we don’t want super greasy roots or too much product build up. Wash hair day before shoot with little or no styling product.

Always bring your own mascara and foundation just in case the make up artist does not have your color or doesn’t provide these items. If you like false lashes, bring a pair and ask the artist to apply them for you. Keep some safety pins and bobby pins in your make up bag for hair and wardrobe alteration or malfunction.

For your wardrobe, solids are preferred over prints and bring layers. Don’t forget to include any fun scarves, belts, jackets & funky jewelry you might have as well as a few different pair of shoes. Bringing more options for wardrobe change is better than not bringing enough.

Drink plenty of water the day before your shoot and get eight hours of sleep. If it’s in the morning, wake up early to do some light stretching or exercise so you look & feel awake when you arrive. Eat a small healthy breakfast and drink green tea if you need an energy boost.

Practice modeling the outfits you have chosen for the photo shoot in the mirror. Make sure the clothing lays right and you feel comfortable in it.

Be confident and have fun!

Ingredients for Aging Eyes

By: Richard Banks, Elite Serum CTO

Posted: January 9, 2012

Eyes are among the areas on the face that are most concerning to aging clients. The delicate skin that surrounds the eyes often becomes dark, puffy and wrinkled as time passes. However, with the help and recommendation of spa professionals, the proper eye creams and serums featuring the latest in anti-aging ingredients, can be obtained by clients.

When recommending a solution to skin aging around the eyes, consider using products in the treatment room and retailing products in your boutique that feature advanced formulas that include highly concentrated blends of the most potent anti-aging peptides and moisturizers. Following are several anti-aging ingredients to look for in an eye product.


Argireline. Argireline, manufactured by Lipotec, is the brand name for acetyl hexapeptide-3. It is considered by experts to be one of the best needle-free alternatives to Botox. Argireline has been shown to reduce wrinkle depth, especially around the forehead and eyes. This was proven in a study published in the International Journal of Cosmetic Science in 2002. In this report, it was demonstrated that a cream containing 10% acetyl hexapeptide-3 used by healthy women volunteers reduced wrinkle depth up to 30% after 30 days of treatment.

SNAP-8. The anti-wrinkle octapeptide SNAP-8, manufactured by Centerchem, is an elongation of the hexapeptide Argireline. It is well-known that the molecular mechanism involved in facial aging is directly related to changes in the conformation of the collagen triple helix, degradation of the elastin polypeptides and certain disorder in the packing of the lipidic matrix of the skin. It has been clearly established that these conformational changes and the disturbance of the perfect packing of the lipid matrix can be significantly avoided by modulating muscle contraction.

Haloxyl. Haloxyl, manufactured by Sederma, also known as palmitoyl tetrapeptide-7, reduces puffiness and dark circles under the eyes. This peptide works by encouraging proper circulation in that area. Essentially, studies have indicated that Haloxyl reverses the fluid buildup that naturally occurs while sleeping. Eyelid swelling is a common cause of puffiness and dark circles. Accordingly, when you lie down, gravity causes fluid to accumulate in your lower eyelids. Haloxyl counteracts this effect by increasing the lymphatic drainage by 85% in clinical studies.

Eyeliss. Eyeliss, manufactured by Sederma, is a proprietary combination of three active peptide molecules that are designed to rapidly and effectively reduce puffiness and bag volume under the eyes by more than 70% upon application. This biomolecular-engineered solution was discovered as a result of sensory perception screening tests that were specifically designed to treat puffiness under the eyes.

Matrixyl 3000. Matrixyl 3000, manufactured by Sederma, contains two matrikines, Pal-GHK and Pal-GQPR, which act in synergy to restore and maintain skin’s youthful appearance. Matrikines are messengers of cutaneous restructuration and repair. They activate the neosynthesis of extracellular matrix macromecules, thus providing Matrixyl™ 3000 with a visible anti-wrinkle efficacy. As messenger molecules, these matrikines are capable of regulating cell activities. More specifically, they interact with specific receptors to trigger the stimulation of certain genes involved in the process of extracellular matrix renewal and cell proliferation.

SYN-Coll. SYN-Coll, manufactured by Pentapharm Ltd., stimulates the collagen synthesis in human fibroblasts. Skin aging—and in particular, chronic UV exposure—leads to degenerative changes in skin. This is characterized by distinct alterations in the composition of the dermal extracellular matrix (ECM). The consequences are manifold, such as increased skin fragility, leathery skin appearance and formation of wrinkles. Collagen represents the main component of the ECM of the dermal connective tissue. Thrombospondin I (TSP) is a multifunctional protein that activates the latent–but-biologically inactive form of TGF (tissue growth factor). TGF is known as the key element in the synthesis of collagen and binds to a particular sequence in the TSP molecule.


Red and green seaweed extract. Natural seaweed extracts found in the Elite Serum™ work to target glycation and preserve the skin’s natural collagen. In in vitro tests, the ingredient was shown to inhibit skin-degrading enzymes and the glycation process. Glycation is triggered when the naturally occurring sugar molecules in the skin bond to a protein or lipid molecule without the controlling action of an enzyme. The resulting glycation process impairs the functioning of biomolecules, which weakens the skin structure at a cellular level, leading to a less firm surface and a greater tendency toward wrinkling.

Pure hyaluronic acid. Hyaluronic acid is the key for maintaining water substances in human skin. Due to aging, natural hyaluronan concentration in the skin decreases at an alarmingly increasing rate throughout time. Accordingly, the skin’s ability to maintain moisture is weakened, and it gives the appearance of being dry and rough. When hyaluronic acid is applied back to the skin, it penetrates the dermis, combines with water, and promotes microcirculation and nutrient absorption. It forms an air-permeable layer to help keep the skin moist and smooth. The result is rapid skin rejuvenation, diminishing the appearance of wrinkles, crow’s-feet and other cosmetic signs of age around the eyes caused by sun exposure, smoking, stress and other common factors.