Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Is An Eye Cream Necessary?

Consider this. The skin around your eyes is 10 times thinner than the skin on the face, and as a result, is 10 times more delicate. We blink approximately 10,000 times per day and have other repetitious facial movements such as smiling, squinting and expressions. Every day, to add insult to injury, there is eye makeup application and removal, insertion and removal of contact lenses, rubbing of the eyes, under eye puffiness from too little/too much sleep, allergy season, dehydration, and just plain life . . . whether in the fast lane, or not. We could go on, but you get the picture.

The skin beneath the eye has very few oil glands and lacks natural moisture, and as a result, is the first area of the face to show age. Facial creams are not formulated to deal with the myriad of special needs of the skin around the eyes. In fact, they may contain active ingredients that are just simply too potent. For instance, essential oils are not used in eye creams because they are too powerful for such a fragile area. Facial creams are designed for a thicker skin and address altogether different needs. But to answer your question, will they do? Yes, if you are young and have no concerns for your eye area or the negative effects your face cream may create. Whereas, a well formulated eye cream will do right by you, and your eyes. It is important to take into consideration the sensitivity of the eye area and its vulnerability to irritations and allergic reactions that provoke puffiness and the dreaded watering, wipe, watering, wipe situation set off by a moisturizer. A good eye cream will target specific problems and deal with the "some you want and some you don't want" fine lines that come with time, and do it properly without the complications. Let's be honest, some of those lines are attractive and some of them, well, they need to be stopped in their tracks before they unpack their 'bags' and move in. Which one do we recommend? Stay tuned.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Dream Cream: Three Magic Ingredients

Of all the products on the market, what three ingredients should you look for in an anti-aging dream cream? Just three . . .

Osmolytes - a botanical molecule that regulates cell volume by controlling and stimulating moisture exchange. These water regulators play a major role in keeping the equilibrium between the cells and their environment. They bind water and regulate cellular stability and protect against dehydration and stresses. Hydrate.

Omega 3 and 6 - not made by the body, but essential for preventing dehydration. Healthy skin needs essential fatty acids as they affect the ability of the skin to maintain its own moisture content in several ways, not to mention their anti-oxidant properties. Many skin disorders can be alleviated within a few weeks based upon a skin care program utilizing essential fatty acids. Hydrate.

Hyaluronic Acid - a natural component in our skin assigned to the role of holding moisture. It makes up 80% of the substance of the dermis that protects the collagen and elastin fibers and gives density to the skin. Hyaluronic Acid is an incredible hydrator as it holds up to 1000 times its weight in water. Hydrate.

Friday, February 22, 2008

Reading Cosmetic Labels . . . or Not

Learning to read cosmetic labels makes you a savvy consumer. Right? It places the power of educated decision making in your hands enabling you to choose what is best for you, your skin, and your health. True, but unless you are a chemist, or scientist, understanding an ingredient list is quite another matter. The names of ingredients are, for the most part, incomprehensible. Reality Check! Consumers are not expected to interpret the information correctly, in fact, it is highly doubtful that much time is really spent reading the fine print. What does sell cosmetic products is good old fashioned advertising as opposed to a labored dissection of the contents. A skin care cream is sold on a promise, . . . a promise for a specific result. It is the triple 'P' principle in marketing cosmetics. People Purchase Promises. Anti-aging products are manufactured around the needs of their mid-life consumers and the most reputable skin care companies will deliver the best product they have in their arsenal against aging.

For the record, here is an abridged version on how to read an ingredient list. Each product will have an army of ingredients incorporated into the product to fulfill its divine purpose. The cosmetic label will host the ingredients listed in a descending order of concentration. The first five ingredients are the most important and will offer a fairly good preview of the overall product. Vitamin extracts, essential oils, and AHAs may appear in the middle of the list because they are efficient in smaller concentrations. Fragrances and preservatives should be on the tail end of things - below 1%. Once you see a fragrance listed, which is usually at the 1% concentration level, anything after is generally in the preservative family. What is interesting is that a "trade secret" does not have to be listed, and that secret will be the coup-de-gras of the cream. Hmmm . . .

So, do yourself a favor and put away your cosmetic dictionaries and leave that to the professionals. Our best advice is to ask your esthetician to explain the product and its ingredients to you and make sure the product you choose is the correct choice for your skin type and your specific needs. Keep checking back with us and we will do our best to help you become an informed consumer, . . . without all the fuss.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Urban Luxury: 24K Gold Facial

Cleopatra slept in a mask of gold every night. The Queen of the Ch'ing Dynasty had gold rolled on her face everyday. Spas are now taking Cleopatra's lead. Pure gold facials are being offered in specialty spas around the world. 24K gold is used exclusively as 14K and 18K gold contain other materials and metal which may prove toxic or cause skin problems. The application process is accompanied by Gamma PGA, a 100% natural fermentation product of the soy protein, which claims to be 10 times more hydrating than hyaluronic acid (retains moisture like a sponge) and more elastic than collagen. An ultra sonic mist with water droplets seven times smaller than a traditional steamer is used to penetrate and soften the top layer of the skin creating an perfect environment for moisture absorption.

This treatment is said to exfoliate and refine the skin, increase blood flow, stimulate cellular growth, regenerate healthy cells and provide a tightening effect, all the while, fighting free radicals. The jury is still out on this treatment. Unfortunately, there is no current supportive data showing any benefit when gold is applied topically to the skin. What is definite is that the 24K gold facial certainly takes pampering to a whole new level. Your pockets better be lined with gold as this treatment costs $400

Monday, February 18, 2008

Dry vs Dehydrated Skin

Are these two skin conditions the same? No, while both may feel the same tightness they have different underlying issues. Simply put, dry skin lacks oil (sebum) and dehydrated skin lacks water. Sebum helps to regulate moisture loss and assists in maintaining healthy moisture levels in the skin. Dry skin may lead to dehydration as it is weaker than healthy skin and cannot do its job effectively allowing water loss to occur. Understanding your correct skin type and selecting an appropriate skin care program is critical in an effort to combat premature aging. Dry skin needs a cream, or serum, that will replenish the skin and lock in moisture. Dehydrated skin needs a cream, or serum, that can infuse the skin with hydration. Eat diets rich in smart fats, essential fatty acids, like omega 3's found in salmon, soy, flax, and safflower oil. Hot water robs the skin of moisture - keep showers short, bathe in lukewarm water, moisturize immediately after bathing, use a sunscreen that has an SPF of 15 or higher. Drink lots and lots of water during the day. Drink, rest, and be merry!

Friday, February 15, 2008

Is Sothys Secrets a Stand Alone Cream?

Is Secrets a stand alone cream or do I need something else with it like a night cream? (Article Feb. 11th)

The answer rests on a whole host of information on your skin type. As a general rule, a treatment cream should be used at night in tandem with your skin care routine depending on the specific condition of your skin. If your skin is dehydrated, a moisturizing product that will hydrate your skin should be added to your program. Hydration problems could also be treated with a serum worn under the Secrets cream. Note: It is highly recommended that you stay within one line of skin care products to avoid problems that could be caused by a collision of ingredients between the two lines. Skin care companies only formulate their products to work within their own lines, not across the board. A recommendation for a cream that will work with Secrets will be one of our new posts. Check back.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Ooey, Gooey, Good!

Valentine's Day is a perfect excuse to immerse yourself in chocolate. Literally. Eat it, smell it, bathe in it. Ooey, gooey, chocolate. A decadent menu of luxurious chocolate skin care treatments have popped up in spas across the nation. Beauty experts claim the fatty cocoa butter hydrates and softens the skin, the cocoa bean husk acts as a gentle exfoliant to break down harmful free radicals, and the caffeine stimulates the circulatory system and firms the skin. Oh, and get this, . . . there is an anti-cellulite treatment using chocolate. Just sounds wrong, doesn't it?

Spas offer whipped cocoa baths (mmm), chocolate facials, body scrubs, massages, and pedicures. During your spa visit, chocolate treats are served alongside the treatments. Go ahead, indulge. Here are a few facts to ease your conscience. High quality chocolate has twice as many anti-oxidants as green tea and has more flavonoids (anti-viral, anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant) than any other anti-oxidant rich food, including wine or blueberries. Wow, who knew? And, (brace yourself), Vitamin A, B1, C, D, & E, Iron, calcium, potassium, and magnesium. Phew! I mean, really, who cares whether it is one of the best kept beauty secrets around or not? It's Valentine's Day and complete euphoria is just a bonbon away. Now you can truly have your cake and eat it too.

Monday, February 11, 2008


Women 38+ will appreciate not only the result and function of this cream, but the sheer pleasure of its texture and glide. The key active ingredient is 'Tex-OE' from prickly pear, an ingredient that triggers the skin to neutralize the negative effects of stress, or free radical damage, in a couple of hours. This is the normal time frame for younger women to process damage due to stress, but as hormone levels start to change the proteins in the skin responsible for this activity may take up to eight hours. The result? Slow cellular repair, slow regeneration and increased degeneration, all culprits of aging. Sothys Secrets offers a powerful cocktail of anti-oxidants to accompany Tex-OE, including the peel of an apple, peptides to trigger collagen renewal, and iris extract to increase and protect the dermal proteins (collagen and elastin). Marjoram and ylang ylang are responsible for the fragrance and add to the destressing effects of this velvety textured cream. An addictive luxury? In a word, . . . yes.
Available exclusively in Spas and Salons.
Price: $199 for 1.69 oz/(50ml Canada)

*Rate and review this eye cream by sending us an email to

After I turned 40 my skin started to age more than ever. It might be that I have been taking a closer look but I think I am beginning to wear my age and stress levels. Will Secrets help?

Beauty Editor:
40 is that magical age where age knocks is definitely knocking at your door, . . . which, by the way, is not a bad thing. It is our strong belief that beauty truly comes with age and wisdom. Aging is also directly related to how well you take care of yourself. Remember, it takes the 40+ group four times longer than a younger person to recover from stress triggered by emotions, moisture loss, diet, environment, hormones, lack of sleep, not protecting the skin from UV exposure. You name it, you wear it. Secrets is a luxurious weapon to have in your skin care tool box to help mitigate damage done and combat future problems.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Not All Skin Care is Created Equal

What is the difference between professional grade skin care vs department store retail? Great question. Simply put, professional skin care is sold in a spa environment under the careful eye of an esthetician. Professional lines are exclusively prescribed to each client after a thorough skin analysis. Accordingly, manufacturing companies are more comfortable incorporating the maximum amount of allowable ingredients into their products because of the education based distribution. Hence, the category, professional skin care. As a result, clients can bank on a higher percentage of active ingredients and a more efficient product. Kind of important if you are looking for a bigger bang for your buck.

Retail, on the other hand, markets products in a more anonymous setting, and in doing so, must cut back on the level of active ingredients to address the obvious risk of irritation and sensitivities. It is the "a lot of this and a little of that" story. Having said that, there are some interesting products out there, especially in the past few years. We've come a long way, baby! The top companies in this category have buckets of money and they invest in significant anti-aging research and development. And, that is a very good thing.

There are some truly great products on both sides of the fence, but my money at the moment, is on the professional grade products. But more on that later . . .

Saturday, February 2, 2008

Skin Care Turf War

Beauty Editor Post is one of the new kids on the Beauty Blogger Block. This blog will discuss and explore the colossal skin care turf war that stimulates an annual ticket of well over $6 billion in sales. $6 billion! The offerings of the anti-aging skin care market is anything but clear. The vast selections only serve to confuse consumers who know what they need but are uncertain as to what product will deliver the desired effect. This blog will attempt to break down and simplify professional anti-aging skin care products, talk about what is hot, what is not, what is worth the money and what is a waste of money, answer any questions you may have, and hopefully, have a little fun. The writers at Beauty Editor may be new to the world of blogging, but they are certainly not new to the world of skin care. They are career professionals in the skin care industry and are willing to share a treasure chest of invaluable insider's information. So, stay tuned and keep coming back. Oh, and, to be clear, there won't be much time spent on the makeup side of things - lipsticks, mascaras foundations, etc. There are many, very competent and incredibly entertaining beauty bloggers out there in the blogosphere to which we will supply links.