Alcohol & Your Skin

A very recent study has come out with the proposition that even one glass of wine is damaging and, according to this study, an all-round Prohibition era should be instituted forthwith. It is the belief of this writer that extremes of any stripe are dangerous, be they in health, politics or art.

This is why we argue that moderate consumption of alcohol can be beneficial to one’s health and enjoying a glass of wine or beer after a hard day at work is a common way to relax. However, consuming too much alcohol not only makes you feel bad, it can affect your appearance too.

Excessive alcohol can age the skin. The three biggest negative impacts are:

Dehydration

The human body is almost 50% composed of water.  Since the skin is the largest organ in the body, without adequate water it cannot perform its normal barrier protective function or appear healthy and vibrant.  Healthy looking skin needs a good balance of moisture, so drinking plenty of water helps keep your skin hydrated. Think of water as an internal moisturizer, which you should apply continuously throughout the day. Alcohol can dehydrate your body, pulling moisture out of the skin, along with the vital nutrients your skin needs to keep it healthy. When skin becomes too dry, it is more likely to wrinkle, and can make you appear older than you actually are.

Blood Vessel Dilation

When you drink alcohol the blood vessels just beneath the surface of your skin dilate, causing redness or flushing and worsening the appearance of spider veins. For those who abuse alcohol, this effect can become permanent, giving a very uneven, unhealthy-looking complexion.

Pre-Existing Skin Conditions

There are several dermatologic conditions that can be aggravated by the consumption of alcohol including rosacea and psoriasis. Drinking alcohol can cause symptom flare-ups making these chronic diseases more difficult to treat. Minimizing your consumption of alcohol should be part of your regime for managing any pre-existing skin condition.

Reducing Alcohol Intake Improves Appearance

Overall, reducing the consumption of alcohol will result in better skin.

If you have consumed an excess amount of alcohol, you can attempt to counteract the ill-effects on your skin. Drink plenty of water to rehydrate your body both during and post alcohol consumption, which will in turn rehydrate your skin. Be sure to thoroughly cleanse your skin, and nourish it with a good quality moisturizer as well as daily sun screen.

Sunscreen Facts

Now summer is truly here, a few notes on sunscreen are just what the dermatologist ordered.

  1. You need to apply sunscreen every day – TRUE
  2. You need sunscreen even if it’s cloudy – TRUE
  3. You need to re-apply every 2 hours – ONLY IF YOU ARE OUTDOORS ( If you’re in the office all day no need to re-apply after the morning application)
  4. Sunscreen can be layered for better protection: moisturizer with SPF30 + foundation with SPF will work better that each one separately.
  5. Apply sunscreen liberally 30 minutes before going outside giving it time to absorb.
  6. Do invest in a chic sunhat, it looks great and adds protection.

Are Cleansers and Lotions Really Necessary?

“I don’t use make-up, so just a splash with water should be enough”. As any esthetician can tell you, this is a common comment. Yet, it couldn’t be more wrong.

We live in a relatively polluted world, the air is full of dust particles that are happy to land on our exposed face. Mixed with the dead cells the skin sheds daily, this becomes a build up similar to a dry sponge. Water alone cannot dislodge the buildup and any cream applied will be absorbed by the “dry sponge” before it gets anywhere to do some good to the skin.

Gentle cleansers followed by a lotion will remove the daily buildup and leave the skin ready to receive the nourishing night cream.

Saving money on cleansers and lotions is a false savings, because if the skin is not properly cleansed, no expensive night cream is going to do much good, in fact it would be a case of penny wise and pound foolish.

Do’s and Dont’s about Blackheads

Our skin produces sebum (oil) for protection against the elements. Too much sebum results in oily skin, while too little results dry skin.

When sebum comes in contact with air and pollution it oxidizes and the top becomes dark hence the blackhead. The dark, visible part is like a lid on a pot, while the pore below is full of sebum that cannot come out because the top is now hard. Oily and combination skin will have more blackheads, while dry skin has almost none.

Here are some suggestions on how to deal with pesky blackheads:

Don’t try to squeeze them out. You may bruise the skin and the blackhead will still be there, mocking you.

Don’t resort to removal strips. The ingredients on these may irritate the skin and they only remove the top layer, leaving the pore full of sebum.

Don’t use harsh cleansers containing alcohol and avoid rough, grainy exfoliants that may irritate or scratch the skin.

Do cleanse at night with a gentle milk cleanser AND toner or a special face wash. You may use a good facial brush on the areas with blackheads.

Do use a moisturizer suitable for your skin type. Dehydrated oily skin will produce even more oil to compensate for lack of water.

Do visit your esthetician once a month for a thorough cleansing facial.

Do use a face mask once a week.

 

Animal Testing for Cosmetic Products

I happened on a list of cosmetics manufacturers whose products are sold in China. It appears that China REQUIRES cosmetics be tested on animals before being allowed on the Chinese market.

If you believe this cruel practice is not necessary, like I do, this list will be of great interest.

I hope you do not use these brands, or if you do, have a good think about dropping it/them from your cosmetics cabinet.

My Beauty Bunny‘s list of brands that DO test on animals (avoid these brands!!). Updated for 2018!

This is not a complete list but it includes many of the mainstream US beauty brands that are either conducting animal tests or selling in mainland China (where animal testing is required by law).

Algenist
Amazing Cosmetics
American Beauty (EL)
Anna Sui
Aramis (EL)
Avene
Avon
Balenciaga
Bath & Body Works
Benefit
Bliss
Bobbi Brown (EL)
Boscia
Bumble and Bumble (EL)
Burberry
Bvlgari
C. Booth by Freeman Beauty
Calgon
Calvin Klein
Caress
Catwalk
Caudalie
Chapstick
Chloe
Clairol
Clarins
Clarisonic (sold in Sephora China)
Clean & Clear
Clearasil
Clinique (EL)
Colgate
Colorsmash
Coppertone
Coty
Cover Girl
Crest
Curel
Darphin (EL)
Davidoff
Degree
Demeter (Sold in China)
Dermablend
DHC
Dial
Diesel
Dior
Dolce & Gabbana
Donna Karan (EL)
Dove
Dr Brandt (Sephora China)
Dr Jart (Sephora China)
Eclos
Edge
Elie Saab (Sephora China)
Energizer Holdings (Schick, Gilette, Hydro Shave, Playtex, etc)
EOS (mainland China)
Equate
Ermenegildo Zegna (EL)
Essie
Estee Lauder (EL)
Eucerin
Febreze
Fekkai
Fendi
Ferragamo
Flirt (EL)
Freeman
Fresh
Fusion Beauty (Sephora China)
GAP
Garnier
Giorgio Armani
Givenchy
GlamGlow
GoodSkin Labs (EL)
Got 2 Be
Grassroots Research Labs (EL)
Gucci
H2O+ (Sephora China)
Hawaiian Tropic
Head & Shoulders
Herbalife
Hugo Boss
Irish Spring
Ivory
Jergens
J F Lazartigue (Sephora China)
Jimmy Choo
John Frieda
Johnson & Johnson
Joico
Jo Malone (EL)
Jurlique
KAO
Kenzo
Kerastase
Kiehl’s
Kinerase
Kiton (EL)
KMS
Kose
K.Y.
La Mer (EL)
Lab Series for Men (EL)
Lady Speed Stick
Lancome
Laneige
Lanvin
La Roche Posay
Laura Mercier
Lever 2000
Lipstick Queen
Listerine
L’Occitane
Lorac (questionable – here is their latest response “Lorac – LORAC does not support the testing of products on animals and we ask all suppliers to support this point of view and all suppliers state that they do so. LORAC does not use a third party to test on animals. LORAC does not sell in countries requiring animal testing. Please note, LORAC cannot warrant or certify that all suppliers who say they do not test on animals in fact do not test on animals. Additionally, notwithstanding the statements of suppliers to LORAC, LORAC has no way of knowing what the “suppliers of the suppliers” are doing. In regards to the vegan ingredients there is no way to know for sure due to the lack of control over raw ingredients.
L’Oreal
Lubriderm
Lysol
MAC (EL)
Make Up Forever
Malin + Goetz
Mally Beauty (they are working on reformulating to adhere to Leaping Bunny standards)
Mama Mio
Marc Jacobs Fragrances (owned by Coty)
Mark
Mario Badescu (store in Shanghai)
Mary Kay
Matrix
Max Factor
Maybelline
Mentadent
Michael Kors (EL)
Missoni (EL)
Mitchum
Mont Blanc
Morphe
Nair
NARS
Neutrogena
New York Color
Nexxus
Nicole by OPI
Nina Ricci
Nivea
Noxzema
OGX
Ojon (EL)
Old Spice
OPI
Origins (EL)
Palladio
Pantene
Pat McGrath
Pet Head
Peter Thomas Roth (Sephora China)
Pevonia Botanica
Philosophy
Phyto
Playtex
Ponds
PRADA
Prescriptives (EL)
Purell
Purpose
Q-tips brand
Redken
Rembrandt
Revlon
Right Guard
Rimmel London
Roberto Cavalli
ROC
Sally Hansen
Sampar (Sephora China)
Schick
Schwarzkopf
Scope
Sean John (EL)
Sebastian
Secret
Sensodyne
Sephora house brand (including Hello Kitty)
Shu Uemura
Simple Skincare
Sinful Colors
SK-II
Skintimate
Soft & Dri
Softsoap
Speed Stick
St. Ives
Strivectin
Suave
Talika (Sephora China)
Tanda
The Art of Shaving
Tom Ford (EL)
Tommy Hilfiger (EL)
Tony Moly
Tresemme
Trojan
Tyra Beauty
Unilever
Valentino
Vaseline
Veet
Vera Wang
Versace
Victoria’s Secret
Vidal Sassoon
Walgreens house brand
Wella (Sephora China)
Woolite
Yardley
Younique (According to Logical Harmony – Do not verify nor require that their suppliers of ingredients or companies that they work with in manufacturing their products are cruelty-free.)
Yves Rocher
ZIRH (Sephora China)

Sensitive Skin Explained

With winter fast approaching, sensitive skin is even more at risk of being irritated by harsh conditions.
True sensitive skin is triggered by sun exposure, fragrances, soaps, products, the weather, chemicals, inflammatory foods, and alcoholic beverages. It takes time to find the culprit and dermatologists specialize in patch testing and may test for over 100 different substances.

Rosacea is usually a constant once it appears. It is characterized by red flushing; small, visible capillaries; watery eyes; and small inflamed bumps; but it can be controlled. Take the necessary steps to treat rosacea before it becomes severe and avoid the triggers that exacerbate it.
Sensitized skin is much easier to determine and care for. Skin becomes sensitized from being exposed to harsh, too abrasive products, such as alcohol in lotions, rough face scrubs, AHAs in cleansers and toners.

They key is to treat senitized skin gently:

Modify cleansing and skin care routines during the colder months, in dry climates, and in hard water areas. Non-foaming, sulfate-free cleansers, milder exfoliants, and fragrance-free moisturizers suited to skin type will help restore the glow to compromised skin.

Do not scrub the skin. Cleanse with only the fingertips and blot dry; never rub the face with a towel. Because so many things, including even gentle active ingredients and professional treatments, can cause superficial flaking and peeling, the temptation to speed up the process by scouring off dead skin cells can be irresistible.

Grainy scrubs, baking soda paste, sonic cleansing brushes, spa gloves, buffing pads, loofahs, washcloths, and even towel-drying can spell trouble for sensitized skin. Side effects include redness; burning; prolonged scaling; increased sun-sensitivity; a thick build-up of keratin; and an uneven, blotchy skin tone.

Attempting to scrub off flaking and thickened dead skin will backfire. The body quickly produces a thicker buildup to protect itself, just like calluses form after repeated friction from ill-fitting shoes and pedicure paddles. Once this behavior is discontinued, sensitized skin can improve dramatically.

Water intake hydrates the skin from within, improves elasticity, plumps fine lines and wrinkles, and helps achieve a healthy glow. When the skin is well-hydrated, it is easier to address dry skin, eczema, seborrheic dermatitis, rosacea, and eczema. Caffeine, alcohol, and smoking dehydrate the skin, so it is best to cut back drastically or stop completely.

Running a cool mist humidifier at night will hydrate the skin and help counteract the drying effects of cold weather, dry climate, heaters, and air conditioners. Clean as directed to prevent fungus and bacteria growth.

Choose fragrance-free products when possible. Perfumes, mixtures of fragrant essential oils or aroma compounds, fixatives, and solvents can be irritating to sensitized skin and very reactive in sunlight.

Do not overheat homes and avoid heat sources like hot stoves, ovens, hairdryers, fireplaces, space heaters, hot showers, and direct sun.

 

What’s New in August

The European Touch

Sothys Jumbo Cleansing Duo

Cleansing Milk 400ml+ Floral Toner 400ml

Double the regular retail size, for the regular price – that in itself is a great deal.
We went one step farther and made these duos our Product of the Month at
15%off.

Clarity Cleansing Duo
Comfort Cleansing Duo
Purity Cleansing Duo

 
New Sunscreen Products by Peter Thomas Roth

Perfect timing for the sunny, hot weather.
We can now offer you 2 new sunscreen items:


Anti-Aging Sunscreen Stick SPF50
Sunscreen cream ideal for the face, dries matt and is a great makeup base.
The “stick” refers to the packaging, not the contents.

Ultra-Lite SPF 30
This lotion absorbs very fast to provide sheer broad spectrum protection.

Both sunscreen items are priced at the introductory price of $26.- (regular $32.-)

We wish you an enjoyable, sunny and relaxing month!

The Staff @ www.theeuropeantouch.com

Summer Travel Kits & Maxi Duo

  • Minis & Maxi : Travel Kits & Maxi Duos
  • Gernetic Travel Kits
  • Ilike Travel Kits
  • Sothys Travel Kits
  • Sothys Maxi Duos

Gernetic Travel Kits

Perfect size to take on a trip, will last up to three weeks and takes up minimum space.
A great way to try out new products or a lovely, thoughtful gift.
Four options to choose from:

#1  Glyco 50ml + Fibro 50ml + Synchro 30ml
#2  Glyco 50ml+Fibro 50ml+Synchro 30ml+MyoMyoso30ml
#4  Glyco50ml+Fibro50ml+Synchro30ml+Vasco30ml
#6  Glyco50ml+Fibro50ml+Synchro30ml+Immuno30ml


Ilike Organics Travel Kits

Each pouch contains a milk cleanser 30ml + an exfoliant 17.25ml + a mask 17.5ml + a moisturizer 12.5ml.

1. Hyaluronic Time Erase Complex– anti aging.
2. Balancing – oily/acneic.
3. Vitalizing – normal/combination.
4. Time Reverse – aging, dry
5. Brightening – Hyperpigmentation
6. Calming – sensitive
7. Grape Stem Cell – anti aging, protective.
8. Eyes and Lips

Sothys Maxi Duo Cleanser + Toner Duo in double the regular size.Only the size is bigger, the price is the same as for regular size products.  Exceptional value for all budgets.

1. Clarity Cleanser 400ml + Clarity Toner 400ml 
for Sensitive Skin and Broken Capillaries.
2. Comfort Cleanser 400ml+Comfort Toner 400ml 
for Dry Skin.
3. Purity Cleanser 400ml + Purity Toner 400ml 
for Oily Skin


Sothys Travel Kits

Four products in each kit : Cleanser 40ml + Toner 40ml + Moisturizer 15ml + Serum 15ml.Great for one week trip or a thoughtful gift.
1. Vitality Kit – Normal/Combination Skin
2. Comfort Kit – Dry Skin
3. Anti-Age 2 Kit – First Fine Lines
4. Anti-Age 3 Kit – Mature Skin 

Exfoliation for Mature Skin

I was inspired to write this by reading another interesting post by Perry Romanowski’s from The Beauty Brains.

In the past I wrote about the importance of exfoliation for maintaining good skin and some readers may wonder if exfoliation can be done indefinitely, or, as Peter’s client put it “Does exfoliating make you run out of skin?”

The answer is resoundingly NO.

The skin has a basal layer ( the live layer) which produces new skin cells that travel upwards and become the top layer. At this point these cells are dead and will naturally flake off to make room for new ones, and so on. The whole process takes about 35 days. Stem cells in the basal layer produce skin cells indefinitely, but, with aging the production slows down. This in turn means the natural sloughing process slows down too and this is why aging skin has that greyish tinge : it’s been around too long.

Exfoliation takes care of that problem by removing the dead cells and making room for fresh ones to come to the surface.

Exfoliating excess dead cells also eases penetration of anti-aging serums and creams and hereby enhances their effectiveness.

You have multiple choices when choosing exfoliants:

1. grainy, mechanical ones that work by gently moving your fingertips in small circles.

2. enzyme peels ( e.g.from pineapple, papaya) which are applied and allowed to work for a few minutes, then rinsed off.

3. AHA like glycolic acid, lactic acid, malic acid which can be done by an aesthetician.

4. chemical peels like TCA done by a dermatologist.

5. microdermabrasion that is done by either an aesthetician or dermatologist.(in reality it will be done by the nurse)

Exfoliation is beneficial for mature skin and should be done regularly, as part of a good skin care maintenance program.

Getting Your Skin Ready for Spring

dreamstimefree_130900

 

Winter is on its last legs, we hope, so we turn our attention on the current state of the skin. Our faces had to put up with harsh winds, snow, rain, cold outdoors and overheated and dry indoors. Our winter skin care regime should have included nourishing creams and masks. Even in the best case scenario, assuming the skin is in good shape, weather change brings change in the skin care routine.

Take a look at the skin after cleaning it well. Notice any imperfections, any flakiness, any rough spots. Now is the time to apply a good exfoliation.

By exfoliating we remove accumulated dead cells, build-up of makeup and pollution. Winter dryness causes dehydration and flakiness. By exfoliating we prepare the skin for a fresh start.

There are many choices for exfoliants : classic scrubs with small beads are the most basic (keep well away from crushed almonds or other”natural”bits that can be scratching the skin like so many needles). A good mechanical scrub is GerPeel by GERnetic.

Better exfoliants will contain plant enzymes, or lactic acid and do not need scrubbing, as the enzymes break down the protein in the dead cells and all you need to do is wash them off. A good example is Yogurt Power Peel by Ilike Organic Skin Care.

Chemical peels, such as glycolic acid peels, are done by an aesthetician and will give splendid results, especially if you sign up for a series of 4-6 treatments.

If you don’t want to commit to that, you can use a trio of glycolic acid home care products that effect an exfoliation over time. There is absolutely no down time and the results are excellent. A good example is the Glycolic Acid Trio by Peter Thomas Roth.

The same company has an interesting exfoliation called Laser-Free Retexturizing, which combines enzymes with microscopic jojoba beads and glycolic acid for deep exfoliation, plus an extract from a South American plant called dragon’s blood, to repair skin damage, plus sweet almond, apricot and mango oils to moisturize. This product packs a real 1-2-3 punch.

Regardless of the method you choose to exfoliate, once this step is done you can turn to a deep moisturizing mask used as a treatment for a week. It will deeply hydrate the skin and assist in eliminating fine lines due to winter dehydration.

Now you’re ready to start your spring skin care routine. The same way you review your spring wardrobe, you must review your skin care array of products. Check your milk cleanser and toner. Are they still smelling clean and fresh? Then keep on using them, by all means. Just make sure storing them near a heater over winter hasn’t turned them into a bacteria hotel.

Moisturizers, for both dry and oily skins, are a daily must in the morning. Try to use a moisturizer with sunscreen and if not, use a sunscreen AND a moisturizer.

Do change your night cream to a lighter, nourishing one. It’s time to add an eye cream to the routine and prevent new lines.

Do keep on using a moisturizing mask once a week, preceded by a light exfoliation.

Following this routine will result in peaches’n cream skin, ready to welcome spring and summer in our gardens and patios.

Questions I answered recently.

Recently I joined a panel of experts on CharmRoom, a website dedicated to answering skin, hair, makeup and body related questions.

Here are some of the questions I answered, in the hope that this will help other people who have the same question.

Q : “I am new to makeup and want to know the best ways to make my eyelashes look thicker. Thkx!”

A : Use a “volumizing” mascara, like Blinc.
This mascara not only enhances the length and volume of the lashes, but does not run even if you cry.
Ideal for contact lens wearers.
Remove with warm water only, no remover or cleanser.

Q :I wash my face daily, but within 3 hours my face is extremely oily again. What should I do? “

A : Change whatever you’re using to wash your face. It probably contains alcohol which strips the skin and this is why the skin produces more oil.
The oil is there as a protection and if you take it all off, the skin will produce more in self defence.
The face wash I suggest has no alcohol, but cleans the excess oil without stripping the skin bare.  Here is the link to Sothys Purifying Foaming Gel. Another good face wash is Peter Thomas Roth Gentle Foaming Cleanser

:What is a good face cream that will not make my face break out?”

:I suppose the creams that make your face break out are not for your skin type.
It’s not easy finding a good cream if you have combination skin.
I suggest Synchro2000 by GERnetic, which is a moisturizing and regenerating cream that you can use both day and night and whose light texture is just perfect for skin like yours.

Do you have questions like these? Do you have comments on the questions / answers in this post? Don’t be shy! Let us hear your voice and we’ll thank you for it.

Cheers,

Nadia

by Nadia Danay

Moisturizers – We All Need Them

 

dreamstime_xs_3019126

Our skin is a complicated structure, but today we’re only focusing on two basic components : oil and water.

Oil, otherwise known as “sebum” is produced by tiny sebaceous glands. The job of the sebum is to cover the skin like a protective wrap against outside harmful elements, like bacteria, dust, pollution.

Too little oil results in dry skin, while too much oil results in oily skin.

Water is necessary for most of the body functions and is a very large component of every cell. Even if we drink enough for our body, the first organ to lose water content is the skin. This is why we need to moisturize in addition to drinking.

Too little water results in dehydrated skin. This is skin that shows tiny scratches, almost like  they were made by a fine needle, going in all directions. Chronically dehydrated skin will develop wrinkles regardless of age.

OIly skin is very often dehydrated because of harsh, cheap cleansing products which strip the skin not only of too much oil, but also of precious water.

Moisturizers are formulated to respectively suit oily and dry skin and using the wrong moisturizer can result in break outs (oily skin) or diminished but still present dehydration (dry skin).

It is customary to use a moisturizer for day time because our various activities will invariably result in water loss. In addition to replacing water, moisturizers are also protecting the skin against water loss.

Many moisturizers contain SPF, which saves us the use of 2 products instead of just one. The problem here is that SPF needs to be re-applied during the day and no one I know is ready to take off their make up in mid-day, just to re-apply moisturizer!!

The solution is to use mineral powders with SPF and apply this several times a day.

I look forward to your comments and questions. Have a great week!