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Tag Archives : facial toner

6 Ways To Get Healthy, Glowing Winter Skin

I can’t stress enough how imperative it is to protect our skin from all the perils of winter. We’re not just talking the face – the lips and body take quite a beating during this season too.

While everyone’s skin becomes more sensitive regardless of skin type, some people experience different degrees of dehydration and dryness, while others struggle with unexpected blemish breakouts. During the winter months we are contending with a multitude of factors that the skin quite literally has to weather. In addition to the cold, crisp air which dehydrates and strips the skin of the nutrients it needs to protect itself, we are constantly transitioning from the arid, manufactured heat of our homes and offices to the dry, frigid air of the great outdoors. This never-ending revolving door between 2 highly contrasting environments whips our skin into a tizzy. The skin becomes like a yo-yo not able to adapt quickly enough to its ever changing environment. It’s uncertain of what to do first to protect itself, so we need to do a little hand holding and take extra special care of our skin so that it can return the favor.

Back to basics! Drink tons of water!

It may be a bit counterintuitive but we need to drink as much water during the winter as we do all summer long. Our bodies are working overtime to keep us warm during the chilly winter months. This requires us to consume more calories and water. Since our skin comes into direct contact with the elements outside, it gets hit hard. If we don’t drink enough water, the skin is unable to carry out its cellular activities as efficiently. As a result the skin becomes dehydrated. So remember to drink.

Skin care by skin type

There is no one skincare regimen that fits all. That said, it’s important to step up your skin care game in the winter, but be gentle! No matter what your type, skin becomes more sensitive during the cold winter months and needs us to cut it a little slack.

Winter blemish breakouts

If you tend to experience bouts of seasonal breakouts during the winter, chances are, you are using too harsh a regimen for this time of year. In a time when even combination and oily prone skin requires more hydration, you may be exfoliating or using peeling treatments too frequently. This can actually strip skin of the nutrients it needs. Parched, the skin responds by going into overdrive and manufacturing excess oil. This surplus of oil rears its ugly head on the skin’s surface in the form blackheads, whiteheads and other varieties of blemishes. Ease up on these type of harsh treatments. Try exfoliating 1 x per week or give your face a couple weeks off. Make sure that the exfoliator you choose is gentle. I prefer all natural exfoliators like Yu-Be Foaming Skin Polish. It utilizes ingredients like rice brand and bamboo to exfoliate, extracts of ginger root and ginseng to balance the skin and green tea, geranium oil and camphor to soothe and refresh. (Can be used as a body scrub too!)  I also eliminate glycolic acid peel treatments and products entirely during the winter. If this sounds too scary, try reducing the number of treatments you use. When overused these types of products produce the very blemishes we initially used them to heal.

You may also want to try a moisturizer geared for more sensitive skin that is a bit richer than what you normally use. I can’t say enough good things about Sapelo Skin Care Rejuvenating Cream. It is an anti-aging wonder that is hyper nourishing, yet simultaneously guards against breakouts. It helps stimulate cell growth providing the building blocks to manufacture new collagen, elastin and keratin cells. Alternatively you can try adding 4-5 drops of  face oil to your favorite moisturizer to give it a boost. Cosmetics 27 Huile 27 is an all natural elixir packed with nutrients that boosts the skin ability to repair, moisturize and protect itself. This French multitasker can be used on the lips, hair and cuticles as well.

Chapped face syndrome

Even if your face doesn’t qualify as chapped, like mine does during the winter, you probably want to opt for a richer moisturizer, add a nourishing, water based serum and boost your moisturizer with 3 – 5 drops of face oil. This is by no means taking things too far. If you’re still feeling dry, you may want to try cleansing your face at night only. If you are washing off the remains of the day at night, a bit of warm water followed by a gentle toner is enough in the morning. For those of us with dry skin, even the gentlest cleansers can be extremely drying.

While some of these practices may sound counterintuitive and perhaps even a little scary, dare yourself to conduct an experiment. Giving your skin a break may be just the thing it needs to rebalance itself and keep you looking healthy and beautiful all winter long.

By: Alyssa Barrie Weiss, Twitter: @AlyssaBarrie

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Our 4 Best Facial Toners

If you’ve committed to taking better care of your skin in 2016, adding a toner to your skincare routine is a great place to start. Toners are an important skin care step because they get your cleansed skin ready for your serums and treatment products, allowing those products to work more effectively. Treatment products such as anti-aging and spot lightening moisturizers and emollients can be the most expensive products in your skincare regimen. Boosting their efficacy probably sounds like a really good idea, no?

Toners also pack a skin-benefiting punch all their own. Here are a few of my favorite toners, with some guidance on which skin type they are best for (though each is universal enough that anyone can use any of them – promise.)

Institut Esthederm Cellular Water

This is an extra-gentle (fragrance-free, dye-free, preservative-free and hypoallergenic) option that’s great not only for prepping skin for other products, but also for setting makeup application as well. It is an aerosol bottle that sprays an extremely fine mist, so you don’t have to fret about large drops of liquid smudging your cateye. Institut Esthederm invented Cellular Water (or Eau Cellulaire) to replicate the water found naturally in the skin. While the demineralized water generally used in cosmetics is pure, it does not provide an ideal cellular environment for the skin. Cellular Water was specifically designed for stressed skin that lacks vitality. Its high levels of mineral salts boosts the effectiveness of all other skin care products applied subsequently.

Lavido Hydrating Toner

A botanical-based toner, great for all skin types. Lavido formulated this gentle facial toner with organic pomegranate peel, orange blossom (a.k.a. Neroli – my favorite!) and carrot. The delicately-scented aromatherapeutic Neroli hydrosol water, derived purely from the distillation of orange blossoms, moisturizes the skin and relieves tension. Used after cleansing, this toner can be applied with a cotton round to thoroughly remove any traces of makeup left over. It also works to tighten and close the pores, leaving skin refreshed and ready for serum and/or moisturizer. Don’t let the flowery ingredients fool you, this truly unisex toner can be used by men as an after shave tonic to soothe and repair sensitive post-shave skin. You can also spray directly onto skin whenever you want a quick skin refresh with aromatherapeutic benefits (I’m looking at you, frequent fliers).

Ursa Major 4-in-1 Face Tonic

This is the most robust of all the toners listed here, as it will really help cleanse skin as well. You can find 4-in-1 Tonic in the cult favorite Essential Face Wipes (a post-workout MUST), or if you prefer spray bottle format, Ursa Major’s Traveler’s Skin Care Kit has a perfect travel size bottle of the tonic as well.

4-in-1 Face Tonic cleanses – removing oil and grime without stripping skin of its moisture or throwing off skin’s pH balance. It also exfoliates – dissolving dead skin cells and clearing clogged pores with its 3% natural AHA/BHA complex. It heals skin – soothing irritation and inflammation and accelerating healing (great for razor nicks). It even hydrates and firms! The natural scent is a refreshing, medicinal brew spiked with orange, fir and lavender. I love all Ursa Major products because they use the highest-grade natural ingredients (99.9% natural, 53% organic to be exact), sourced wherever possible from family-owned, sustainable growers. There are never any petrochemicals, sulfates, parabens, synthetic fragrance or color, glycols, silicones or PEGs. All products are also vegan, gluten & cruelty-free.

Vine Minus Ion Care Water

This “water” is so much more than just that! By far the most multi-tasking product we sell, Vine Minus Ion Care Water is a great antibacterial choice to treat acne-prone skin or even occasional breakouts. Care Water can be sprayed anywhere from hair to heels, and reaps different benefits depending on where you spray it. On the skin, it is extremely healing and antibacterial, thanks to the negative ions. Many customers who suffer from acne have reported major improvements in the condition of their skin with regular use. It is superb as a skin and hair “primer”, really boosting the efficacy of all products applied after it. It is also deeply moisturizing, actually drawing moisture to skin and hair.

What’s your favorite toner? Do you rotate? (Yes, of course I do.) Tell us below!

By: Claire McCormack, Twitter & Instagram

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