Category Archives: Vine Vera Blog

Six Reasons To Use A Serum

woman examining herself in the mirror

CTM. Cleanser. Toner. Moisturizer. It’s all you need. The three basic steps. Everything else is just unnecessary, right? We’re all into compacting our skin routines, finding products that multitask and cutting out the extraneous, and these can be valuable time-savers. However, the serum may be a rare exception. It’s one of those products that is worth investing a few extra minutes a day for. In fact, if you’re already using a serum, you might even say it’s worth sacrificing a few minutes of sleep for. What is it about this wonder product that makes it such a great investment? Read on to find out.

They’re Powerful
According to Zoe Weisman, director of product development at Advanced Clinicals, it has a lot to do with content. “Serums tend to be more concentrated when it comes to the active ingredient.” That means that whatever the star ingredient in your serum, be it retinol, vitamin C, hyaluronic acid or another noted skin enhancer, a serum is likely to have a more potent dose that your average moisturizer with the same active ingredient. Weisman also advises looking for a product in an opaque bottle with an airtight lid to prevent oxidation. Smiling woman in white at mirror

There’s One For Everyone
If your skin tends to be on the dry side, Weisman suggests investing in a serum with hyaluronic acid to draw moisture to the skin, which will help to plump up lines and fill in depressions. If dark spots are your concern, vitamin C will prevent damage and hyper pigmentation, while vitamin A (retinol) will increase cell turnover and decrease wrinkles.

Layering
Another of benefit of serum is their light weight and easy absorption, which lend themselves to layering. That means you can combine serums to address different problems, or add one under your moisturizer, SPF, or foundation without creating a pile up.

Eye Serums are the New Eye Cream
If you’re looking to compartmentalize your beauty routine, while still incorporating a serum, you may want to give your sticky eye cream its walking papers. “The ideal,” says Weisman, “is a milky serum. You get the light texture and high potency of serum plus the milky aspect that makes it moisturizing.”

Happy woman applying eye serum at mirror

Benefits Go Below the Neck
If you love your serum, why stop at the jawline? There are serums designed for the neck and décolletage. “If you think about it, ” says Weisman, “this is a bad time for necks since we’re always hunched over our phones.” In fact, if you’re really serum happy there are full body serums to soften stretch marks, and smoothen cellulite, and hand serums to moisturize and treat age spots.

Penetration
Penetration. We’re always wondering whether it happens or not. With serums, the answer is a resounding, “Yes.” Serums’ lightweight formulas absorb better and penetrate more deeply into your skin than moisturizer, so you get better results with no residue.

Why do you love your serum? Let us know what your serum does for you!

The Many Benefits Of Acupuncture

vine vera presents The Many Benefits Of Acupuncture

Cupping, feces face masks, microdermabrasion; with all the latest beauty and health procedures, one more bizarre than the next, it would seem that acupuncture has been relegated to the “Where Are They Now?” files along with the stars of most nineties sitcom stars. While the concept of poking needles in the skin as a way of treating various health issues may have seemed edgy a few decades ago, it now seems rather tame in comparison to some of the newer approaches. However, what comes around goes around, and if something old is discovered to have a new value, it may be worth reinvestigating. Recent studies show that ear acupuncture may help in weight loss. Shall we investigate?

Auricular Acupuncture
Auricular acupuncture, aka, acupuncture of the ear, was a discipline first used in France in 1956. When Dr. Paul Nogier began to notice that the pain of a backache could be relieved by burning the ear of the sufferer, he began mapping the ear to locate spots correlating to various bodily systems and organs. The doctor’s strategy entailed envisioning the ear as a curled fetus with the head pointing downward, and he delivered treatment by applying pressure to the spot corresponding to each organ.

The Study
In order to evaluate the efficacy of acupuncture treatments in weight loss, researchers compared the Korean standard five point acupuncture treatment with single point stimulation. A control group which received a fake treatment was also used.

The study included 91 Koreans, 75 women, and 16 men, all of whom had a body mass index of 23 or greater. None of them had received treatments for weight control in the past six months. The participants were divided into three groups, the first of which received the five point treatment, the second of which received the one point treatment, and the third of which received the fake treatment.

vine vera presents The Many Benefits Of Acupuncture

The Groups
The first group had needles positioned at five points in the ear corresponding to the Shen-men, stomach, spleen, hunger, and endocrine system, which would remain in place for a week, at which time, the needles would be inserted in the other ear, in a process that would be repeated over the eight week trial.The second group had the same treatment, but only one needle was inserted, at the hunger point.

The third group believed that were receiving the five point treatment, but the needles were actually removed right after insertion; however, the group was not notified of the removal and the surgical tape remained to prevent the participants from discovering the truth. All three groups were assigned restricted diets and asked not to exercise during the trial.

The Results
Of the participants who completed the study (24 dropped out) those who received the five point treatment showed a 6.1% reduction in BMI by the middle of the trial, the one point group showed a 5.7% reduction and the group that received fake treatment showed no change at all. The researchers conclude: “Both five needle acupuncture treatment generally used in Korean clinics and one-needle treatment at the hunger point appears to be effective in reducing body weight in the short term.”

Let us know what you think. Would you consider acupuncture as a way of achieving your weight loss goals?

Your Guide To Making Summer Stains Disappear

vine vera banner Your Guide To Making Summer Stains Disappear

Quick! What do these things all have in common: ice cream, the beach, hiking, hot dogs, hamburgers, berries, and sweat? If you guessed all things to do with summer, you’re half right! What is the other half? All things likely to cause stains. Summer brings with it not only its own unique set of activities, but its own unique set of stains caused by those activities, and that could be bad news for your white crop top. But have no fear, for every stain, there is a solution. Here are some of the ways you can help keep your summer clothes stain free.

Ice Cream
What’s summer without ice cream, and what’s ice cream without a big chocolate stain on the front of your shirt? Don’t let run away scoop get in the way of your summertime pleasure. Rinse with cold water, apply a stain pretreatment, fill a sink with cool water, and a few drops of detergent, and let soak.

Berries
Ah, the berries of summer. A vast array of colorful fruits, all with a potential to do some heavy damage to your pastels. Don’t abandon your antioxidants! Use a spatula or knife to scrape off excess. Apply a formula of 1/2 teaspoon dish soap, and 1/2 cup hydrogen peroxide and rinse.

Ketchup
Ketchup is the world’s most popular condiment and most likely to end up on your shirt. Don’t let it dampen your barbecue fun. Pretreat with stain remover. If any of the stains remain, use a clean toothbrush or eye dropper to apply white vinegar to lighten it.

Dirt
With summer comes the opportunity to get out in the great outdoors. Unfortunately, the great outdoors is full of dirt. Don’t let dirt keep you from getting your vitamin D! Wait for the stain to dry. Scrape off excess. Dilute a gentle detergent with water and rub it on to form a lather. Rinse. If the stain remains, apply a solution of one part vinegar, and one part water to lighten it.

vine vera banner Your Guide To Making Summer Stains Disappear

Underarm Yellowing
Nothing like a good workout in the summer to yellow the underarms of your favorite white shirt. Don’t let a sweat stain stop you from getting in your daily aerobics! For a fresh stain, apply some shampoo. If the stain is older, make a paste by mixing four digestive enzyme tablets with 1 tablespoon of water, and let sit for an hour.

Mustard
If you’re headed out to the ball game this summer, a hot dog may seem like a great idea until the mustard drips on the seat of your pants. Don’t let mustard stains keep you from rooting for your favorite team. Just flush the stain with some white vinegar, apply a dish soap solution using one tablespoon clear soap and ten ounces of water and let sit for fifteen minutes.

Wine
Summer and wine were meant to go together. Wine and your clothes, not really, If you’re carefree lifestyle is taking its toll on your clothes, never fear! For red: Coat the stain with salt, boil some water, and stretch the fabric over a bowl. Pour the boiled water onto the spot from a foot above. For white: Run cold water on the stain, spray with dish soap solution (one tablespoon clear soap, ten oz water), and dab with detergent.

Got summer stains? Let us know how you deal with them! We want to know!

The Many Benefits of Raw Honey

honey on green table

Do you ever yearn for a simpler time? A time when you could eat your breakfast of cereal, milk, and orange juice unaware of the possible health dangers? In a world where food that you once thought nutritious is now regarded as possibly fatal, and foods that were once considered dangerous are now hailed as superfoods, it’s hard to tell what’s what. So let’s check on the status of good old honey. Honey has been used as a folks remedy throughout history. How does it measure up to today’s standards?

Honey
If you are a fan of honey, you will be pleased to hear that its reputation remains untarnished. It is still a very popular food, and unpasteurized honey is even used as a medical treatment for wounds in some hospitals. However, when honey is manufactured, it is heated. While this improves the texture and color, and removes excess crystallization, it also destroys much of the honey’s beneficial properties. That’s why you may be interested in the many benefits of raw honey.

Raw Honey Benefits

woman with two jars of honey

Source of Antioxidants
Raw honey has antioxidants called phenolic compounds, and some types of honey are just as potent as fruits and vegetables when it comes to protecting the body from cell damage by free radicals. Honey can help to prevent the oxidative effects of free radicals such as aging and cancer, and the polyphenols in honey may also help prevent heart disease.

Antibacterial and Antifungal
If you have hydrogen peroxide in your bathroom cabinet, it may come as a surprise to hear that it also can be found in honey. Raw honey contains hydrogen peroxide, which kills unwanted fungus and bacteria. Hospitals in Europe have been able to fight Staphylococcus aureus, an antibiotic resistant bacteria, using Manuka honey. Different types of honey have varying degrees of antibiotic qualities.

Heals Wounds
Honey’s germ killing properties also make it useful in medical settings for the treatment of wounds, and researchers believe that these properties go beyond honey’s natural hydrogen peroxide content. Studies have shown Manuka honey’s ability to decrease time in which wounds heal and reduce the probability of infection. However, you should know, this Manuka honey is medical grade before you begin slathering your store bought honey on open cuts.

jar of honey in a woman's hands

Packed with Phytonutrients
Phytonutrients are plant compounds that help to protect the plant, often shielding it from UV radiation, and may do the same for humans. Phytonutrients have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, and since honey is derived from plants, it too is rich in phytonutrients. However, it should be pointed out that these nutrients disappear when honey is processed.

Helps Digestion
Honey has been proven as an effective treatment for Helicobacter pylori, which is a common cause of peptic ulcers which often occur in the digestive system. One or two teaspoons of honey taken on an empty stomach may soothe pain and assist in healing.

What do you use raw honey for? Let us know what you know about this sweet healer.

Scar Treatment Options

woman checking skin in mirror

In movies, good guys scar in a fashionable attractive manner, usually in the form of a pale line strategically placed to make the character look rugged and cute at the same time. However, life is not a movie and we don’t all get so lucky. While some of us may have the good fortune of possessing the perfect scar, others of us spend our lives trying to visualize ourselves scar-free.

Although there is no method for scar removal as yet, there is hope; there are ways to lessen the appearances of scars, and you may even end up turning your less than perfect scar into something straight out of a movie. Here’s a look at scars, what they are and options for treatment.

What Is A Scar?
Scars are natural parts of the healing process of the body, usually resulting from wound repair in the skin and other tissues. Scars can be the results of diseases, accidents, surgeries, or skin conditions, such as acne.

How Do Scars Form?
Scars form when the dermis, a thick, deep layer of skin is damaged. The body forms new collagen fiber to mend the damage, but the new tissue is of a different texture and quality than the original. When the damage has healed, a scar forms.

Hypertrophic to Keloid scars
Although most scars are pale and flat, sometimes the body overproduces collagen and the scar is raised. These kinds of scars are most common in dark-skinned and younger people.

Pitted scars
Other scars have a sunken appearance. These scars result when underlying structures supporting the skin, such as fat and muscle, are lost. Pitted scars are communal the results of surgery or acne.

Stretched skin
Scars appearing as stretched skin occur when the skin stretches rapidly, as in during pregnancy or when skin is under tension while healing.

woman receiving dermabrasion treatment

Scar Treatment Options
While scars cannot be removed completely there are some ways of minimizing their appearance:

  • Topical Treatments
    Although many commercial skin care products such as vitamin E and cocoa butter cream claim to heal scars, they are not effective and should be avoided.
  • Surgery
    There is no specific surgery that can guarantee scar removal, but there are surgical procedures which can be used to change the shape of a scar, or diminish its appearance. In the cases of keloid or hypertrophy scarring, surgery is not recommended because there is a possibility of recurring scars, and even more severe scarring as a result of the surgery.
  • Steroid Injections
    Repeated steroid injections can help to flatten the scars appearance, thus softening the look of keloid or hypertrophic scars.
  • Radiotherapy
    Low dose radiotherapy can be used to prevent the recurrence of hypertrophic and keloid scarring, however, it is only recommended in extreme cases because of its association with long term side effects.

woman receiving dermabrasion treatment on legs

  • Dermabrasion
    Dermabrasion is the removal of the skin’s surface using special equipment. While it may be useful on a raised scar, it may not be as effective when the scar is sunken.
  • Laser Resurfacing
    Dermabrasion’s laser manipulating cousin, traditional dermabrasion involves removing surface layer of skin with the use of lasers. More modern types of lasers may be able to work on the collagen in the dermis without skin removal. This advancement would require less down time than the more conventional resurfacing methods.
  • Filler Injections
    Fillers can be used to raise sunken scars to match the level of the surrounding skin. However, it is to be noted, that the effects of fillers are temporary and may need to be repeated regularly.

What is your experience with scar treatment? Let us know what you recommend.

Beware These Bleaching Ingredients In Your Skincare Products

woman with good skin

One would like to think that society is moving forward; that we are beyond the point of endangering our health for our beauty; that we have come a long way from the days of using white lead to lighten our faces (as the ancient Romans did) or lead sulfate to remove our freckles (Rome circa 15th-18th century). But maybe we’re not as forward thinking as we would like to believe. While the days of full face whitening may be over, many women still use skin bleachers to fade hyperpigmentation and dark spots., and some of these products contain harsh chemicals. Here is a list of some of the chemicals you may not want to see on your skin cream label:

Hydroquinone
If you use skin lightening creams, you may have noticed this ingredient popping up on the label. Hydroquinone is a melanin inhibitor that works by preventing the production of skin pigments. Although it may look as if it is working in the beginning, long-term danger may await. Hydroquinone has been known to cause permanent skin discoloration, and has hence been banned in many countries.

Mercury
Mercury is another ingredient that often looms large in skin lightening products. However, while it may serve to lighten your skin, it may also be doing damage to your kidneys. Mercury in skin products can cause scarring, discoloration, and rashes, and has also been found to break down the skin’s resistance to bacteria and fungus.

Steroids
Banned in most countries without a prescription, topical steroids can cause skin thinning and fungal infections, and long term use can even lead to serious internal diseases. Steroids have also been associated with folliculitis and rosacea.

woman reading labels

Parabens
These preservatives are most often used to extend the shelf like of beauty products, but they have also been found to be carcinogenic. Parabens have not only been associated with an increased cancer risk, and they can also interfere with the endocrine system. Reports show that paraben can have an estrogen-like effect on the body which may disrupt the reproductive system.

Phthalates
Similar to paragons, phthalates are also carcinogenic in nature and should especially be avoided by pregnant women.

Fragrances
They smell lovely, but they may not leave your skin that way. Fragrances can be highly toxic and have an adverse effect on the central nervous system, possibly leading to irritability, hyperactivity, and depression.

Natural Alternatives
So now that you’re sufficiently scared of your skin lightening treatment, you may be wondering if there are natural alternatives, and the good news is; yes, there are! Plant testing has revealed a number of all-natural ingredients that suppress melanin production without the side effects of chemicals. Look for products including such ingredients as licorice, mulberry extract, arbutus, kojic acid, Emblica and vitamin C next time you are looking for a pigment reducer for effective results without the negative side effects.

What natural products do you use for hyperpigmentation? Let us know how you’re staying safe while looking gorgeous!

Beauty Tricks For Days When You Are Short On Time

vine vera banner presents Beauty Tricks For Days When You Are Short On Time

You wake up in the morning, and no matter what time it is, it’s not enough time to get ready and go to work. You look hopelessly look at your array of makeup products, and head out the door, silently hoping your Korean aunt never finds out about this. As you get in your car, you struggle to apply your mascara in the rearview mirror, looking longingly as the Starbuck’s recedes in the distance. Finally, you make it to your building, catch a look at yourself in the lobby mirror, and see….a hot mess. If you’re a busy woman, you’re always short on time, but you can’t afford to look your best. When it comes to beauty shortcuts, you need to take ’em wherever you can get ’em. Here are a few beauty tricks you may want to take advantage of.

Exfoliate Before the Foundation
We all know haste makes waste. Do something quickly and you may have to redo it; you need to get it right the first time. That’s why you need to exfoliate before you apply foundation. Sure, it a may seem counterintuitive to add a step in order to save time, but, as foundation wearers will testify, bases are sure to highlight any patch of dryness on your face, making it necessary to take off the foundation, slather on moisturizer, and start from scratch. Makeup expert Jane Park says, “It (pre-exfoliation) saves time because of your lipstick, makeup, everything goes on smoother after. ” Park uses a konjac sponge for exfoliation gentle enough to use every day. Simply, dampen, smooth it over your face and you’re set for a flawless application.

Use a clear sunscreen as a primer, moisturizer, and facial SPF
We’re always being warned of the importance of applying an effective sunscreen daily, but thick formulas can take ages for the short of time beauty maven to rub in, leaving that telltale white residue marking you as a makeup amateur. Fortunately, newer formulas solve that problem, by offering a sheer consistency that eliminates the chalky whiteness altogether. Even better, because the sunscreen is hydrating, you can skip moisturizing. The sunscreen provides enough hydration to sub for the moisturizer, or you can mix it with your base makeup for extra protection.

vine vera banner presents Beauty Tricks For Days When You Are Short On Time

Multifunctional Mascara
If you’re used to doing full face makeup, this hack will give you the basic effect in a fraction of the time. Instead of doing brow, shadow, eyeliner, and mascara keep things to a minimum by just focusing on your brows and lashes. Use a tinted brow gel to embolden your brows while keeping them tame and use a mascara with multiple wand functions so you don’t have to layer on multiple formulas for a finished look.

Go Monochromatic
It’s great to experiment with contrasting makeup if you have the time. For days when the time is short, multipurpose sticks are a great option. Just dab the color on straight from the tube or use your fingers to apply it to your cheeks, lids, and lips. You’ll find these colors are so sheer and easy to use, you can apply them sans mirror!

Dry Shampoo and A Blow Dryer
Dry shampoo can be a big time saver, but you need to do it the right way. Although you may think you can spritz some dry shampoo on oily roots and be done, hairstylist Jacob Rozenberg says that this will result in large patches of powder that will take ages to absorb. He advises spraying the dry shampoo a minimum of eight inches away from your head, letting it sit for 60 seconds, and then distributing it through your hair with a brush or blow dryer while using your fingers to rake the powder through for even application.

Do you have any time-saving beauty hacks for us? We’d love to hear them! Let us know how you cut your prep time and manage to arrive flawlessly.

Seven Daily Wellness Habits

good habits lead to good life

It’s true that sometimes the emphasis on self-improvement can be a little, well, much. After all, maybe you don’t want to improve, or maybe you’ve already improved, thank you very much, and if you get any better you may just start losing friends. While we don’t want people to stop ‘liking’ you on Facebook because of your glowing positivity, you may want to take a look at this list. You may actually find some things that are a little naughty, and even if you don’t, you and your friends can have fun discussing how much you don’t need to do them.

Coffee
Here’s a habit that most of us have mo trouble keeping, in fact, some of us might claim it’s more difficult to stop. Carlene Thomas, RDN, actually makes no bones about preferring it more traditional “health food” options. “My daily ritual during summer is two beverages- a green smoothie and a really good cafe latte from my Nespresso machine. A morning cafe latte is something I truly enjoy and crave, while a green smoothie is a great way to clear out my fridge and fit in more greens.”

Breakfast
The most important meal of the day should always be tops on your list, and not so hard to swallow. After all, what could be better than food to wake up to? Scott Keatley, RD, says, “My favorite daily habit is breakfast.” He points out that research shows that spending just 15 minutes devoted to making mindful food choices can lead to more satisfaction throughout the day and that breakfast is a great way to kickstart your metabolism in the morning.

Limit Technology
What? Turning off my computer and phone is supposed to be good for my mental health? While no one is suggesting that you miss important phone calls and emails, it has been shown that excessive attachment to technology can lead to isolation. One study of human behavior reported an indirect correlation between the use of social media and happiness. Taking a break may lead to some relaxation and more spare time.

thoughtful woman

Reflect
So, this may sound a little heavy to you, but, really who couldn’t benefit from a few minutes of quiet thought? Carley Sweet, INHC, says, “I take five to ten minutes a day to reflect on what’s going on. I struggle with anxiety, so finding time to go to a quiet spot and just chill really helps me to stay level-headed.”

To Do List
The organization can be key to sanity. Cynthia Pong, JD, says making a to-do list keeps her focus. She says, “my favorite daily habit which helps me manage my stress, stay organized and be productive- is making a to-do list. It sounds basic, but writing things down can go a long way in keeping you sane.” She says just remembering what you have to do can be stressful enough!

Yoga
Not for everyone, but a life changer for some. Calli De La Haye, co-founder of Kali murti Yoga makes sure to find a place for it in her busy day. “I have a 10-month-old daughter, so I have to roll with how the day is going, but this is my savior for staying calm and finding some peace at the start of my day.”

Cooking
While the kitchen may be a disaster area for some, it’s a salvation for others. Says Pat Connelly, founder, and CEO of Cavity, “I cook dinner every night. I try new things and I eat beautifully organic and seasonal foods. It calms me there is something wonderfully methodical about cooking every night….. It helps me unwind from a long day.”

What do you do to stay maintain wellness daily? Let us know which habits keep you on the ball!

Famous Men Who Turn 50 This Year

Ah, the benchmark ages. Sure, every age is another notch in the belt, but there is something about hitting those multiples of ten that really make us take account of where we are in life. If you’re less than excited about turning fifty, well, you know what they say, misery loves company, and, while you may be down in the dumps, it looks like you’re in some pretty good company. Let’s take a look at some of the celebrities hitting the five-o benchmark this year, and not seeming too bothered about it at all.

Vin Diesel posing

Jaguar PS / Shutterstock.com

Vin Diesel
Fast, furious and fifty, Vin Diesel is in the prime of his life! Vin, nee Marc Sinclair, is best known for his role as Dominic Toretto in the “Fast and Furious” film series and is also a producer for this and other franchises. Formerly linked to “F and F” co-star Michelle Rodriguez, Vin is now happily settled. He and current partner, Mexican model Paloma Jimenez, are proud parents to Hania Riley, Vincent Sinclair and daughter Pauline, named in honor of fallen “F and F” alum, Paul Walker. He is also godfather to Walker’s daughter, Meadow Rain.

Will Ferrell
If you’re going to turn fifty, there’s not a much better guy to do it with than Will Ferell. From his riotous impressions of George W. Bush on Saturday Night Live to his hilarious portrayal of Ron Burgundy in “Anchorman 1 and 2,” there are not many people who can say they’ve had as much of an impact on the world of comedy as Will Ferrell. Married to Swedish actress Viveca Paulin, Ferrell is the father of children Magnus, Mattias, and Axl and is the recipient of two Emmy awards for his work on SNL and as a sketch comedy producer for “Drunk History.”

Paul Giammati
From his first high-profile role as Kenny “Pig Vomit” Rushton in Howard Stern’s private parts.to “Sideways” to “American Splendor” to ” Love and Mercy” to “Downton Abbey,” there is no movie starring Paul Giamatti that he has not done justice to. Residing in the Brooklyn Heights neighborhood of Brooklyn, New York Giammati is married to Elizabeth Cohen with whom he raises a son, Samuel, born in 2001. A Yale graduate, Giamatti is a two-time Golden Globe and Emmy Award recipient, and currently stars in the Showtime series, “Billions.”

Jason Statham

Paul McKinnon / Shutterstock.com

Jason Statham
When it comes to tough guys, it doesn’t get much smoother than Jason Statham. The Derbyshire English native, often playing the beloved antihero, is best known for his roles, in “Snatch,” ” The Expendables,” and ” Fast and Furious 6 and 7.” While a tough guy in movies, Statham is quite the ladies man off screen. After his relationship with model Kelly Brook fizzled out in mid-2000, Statham has been dating model Rosie Huntington-Whiteley since 2010. They announced their engagement in 2016 and are currently expecting their first child.

Turning 50? Who are you most happy to be doing it with? Whether it’s a celebrity or otherwise, we hope you have some pretty good company on this benchmark occasion!

Two Products That Can Help You Fight Aging

Beautiful woman in the garden

With all the products out there, it may seem to you that your bathroom has become something closer to a chemistry lab than a bathroom. You are no longer simply the makeup artist, but the subject of a mad science experiment designed to determine what works best on your skin, regardless of negative side effects. Redness, breakouts, rashes, all in the name of the science of beauty. While many of us chalk up failed experimentation to trial and error, there are some things that no women’s cache of makeup should be without. Two of these products are serums and sunscreen.

What Are Serums?
All moisturizers, whether anti-aging or otherwise, should contain a blend of antioxidants, and ingredients for skin replenishment and restoration. Good serums are marked by a high concentration of these ingredients and also by the distinctive texture of the ingredients they contain. Serums should apply smoothly and have a lightweight feel despite their powerful contents.

Tips on Serums
Serums usually address a variety of issues, including wrinkles, environmental damage, loss of firmness, and uneven skin tone.

If you’re looking to safeguard your skin from visible effects of pollution, look for something with a high antioxidant concentration. Antioxidant superstars include retinol, vitamin C, and vitamin E. If you are sensitive to retinol, a vitamin C and peptide containing formula will work well.

Extra sensitive skin prone to redness will benefit from a redness relief formula with ingredients like ceramics and glycerin.

woman trying out products

For large pores, bumpy skin and signs of aging, look for something with niacinamide and hyaluronic acid which will smooth the surface of the skin without a greasy feel.

Serums should be applied twice a day and can be used with or without moisturizers, depending on your skincare needs.

Sunscreen
The first step in any serious anti-aging routine is an SPF rated 30 or higher, and lots of it. That means daily application whether or not the sun is out. And, remember, UVA rays can penetrate glass, so that means that even home, car and office do not provide cover from the damaging rays of the sun, so apply whether inside or out with due diligence.

Tips On Sunscreens
To maximize the benefits of sunscreen, you may want to consider the following:

  • You probably don’t want to apply a typical “beach” all- over body moisturizer to your face. A facial moisturizer with built-in sunscreen will give you the protection while also providing the hydration and anti-aging ingredients that your face requires.
  • Look for a facial moisturizer/sunscreen based on your skin type. Creams work best on dry skin, while fluids and gels are best for oily skin. Those with combination skin should look for a lotion of gel.
  • Antioxidants work well with sunscreen. Look for sunscreens with vitamins C and E, soy, grape, pomegranate am green tea.
  • Sunscreen should be the last skincare product you apply in your am routine. Applying products over sunscreen will make it less effective. If you are layering sunscreen, start with a facial moisturizer with SPF protection, followed by a primer containing sunscreen and topped off with a pressed powder with added protection from the sun.

What do you look for in your sunscreen and serums? Let us know what works best for you to combat aging issues.