Archives for category: anti wrinkle

Okay so maybe you haven’t had a chance to hear about the next big thing for your skin but its showing up everywhere! Hyaluronic acid (sometimes referred to as Hyaluronan) is found in the connective tissue of the body. What does it do? It is responsible for the cushioning and lubrication of the joints.

So now you may be thinking…wait a minute, isn’t this article about skin care?

How right you are! The skin actually contains 50% of the hyaluronic acid found in the body. Hylauronic acid is essential for the vital functioning of many key systems including skin, heart valves, joints and even the eyes! Its benefits to the skin lie in the benefits to collagen production and keeping it hydrated.

Collagen keeps the skin looking plump and youthful. Without proper hydration and production the skin (especially facial tissue) will begin to wrinkle and sag. Hyaluronic acid plays a key role in ensuring that skin production continues properly and continues to stay youthful and smooth. Using products containing hayaluronic acid can lessen the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles significantly on the face.

Many skin care products (especially geared towards anti aging) contain hyaluronic acid. It can be a topical application or injection. A great product is Hydra Gel which will replenish moisture for users of glycolic acid or vitamin C products. It provides extra hydration to counteract the damages environment wreak on the skin. Contains a high percentage of hyaluronic acid that naturally softens the skin while helping it attract and retain moisture. Vitamin B5 fortifies giving a silky texture. Willowherb extract naturally calms and revitalizes.

As with all skin care products, speak with a dermatologist or skin care professional for questions relating to any skin or health concerns you have prior to use. It is important to pay close attention to any reactions you have and discontinue use of product if you notice any symptoms such as redness, swelling, itching or burning.

Final Thoughts

Beat your dry skin blues by replenishing the body with products containing hyaluronic acid. Remember that proper hydration is necessary for optimal body functioning and although this is a naturally produced substance in our body, changing hormone levels may effect how well our bodies produce it. Sometimes nicknamed as the “fountain of youth”, remember that this, as with all skin care products, is not a supplement for taking care of your skin with healthy diet, exercise and taking care of your body every day.

Getting up in the morning to head to the gym may not always seem like the most worthwhile plan but here is one more great reason to break out the sweatpants and do a little cardio: smoother, healthier looking skin.

No kidding. Taking care of your body in one way often impacts it (positively) in other ways we can’t even imagine. A cardio routine is great for your heart but its probable you never thought you could also be clearing up acne or preventing premature wrinkles at the same time.

So what’s the catch? It must seem too good to be true that a simple workout could be so beneficial in so many ways. The catch is consistency. Never expect a one time excursion to the gym or following that Jane Fonda workout DVD once will have long term results. Maintaining a regular workout schedule is the only way you are going to see healthier skin.

Now, the science!

Never accept any fact or statement without evidence or explanation. We don’t want you to simply take our word for it that exercise will benefit you in more ways than one, we want to show you!

Skin is the largest organ so the benefits can be pretty substantial. We’ll begin with one of the most noticeable differences people have seen: reduced acne. No joke. Exercise helps to reduce the production of testosterone hormones like DHEA and DHT. Testosterone is a part of why acne flair ups occur. Working out reduces stress levels and lower stress helps decrease production of this particular hormone.

Another great benefit working out provides is an increase in collagen production. Collagen is the connective fiber that “plumps” the skin. As we age and collagen production slows, skin begins to sag and wrinkle. By stimulating increased production it is possible to combat this problem. Exercise increases blood circulation and the delivery of nutrients to the cells: ideal conditions for collagen.

Bonus: Yoga is especially great for better skin because while toning the muscles through controlled movements, you are also “toning” the skin. The different yoga “poses” offer a variety of benefits to tone, tighten and increase blood flow to the face. This will keep skin looking smoother.

Cleansing the body of toxins is the last component we are going to look at (although there are several other benefits not discussed today). When we exercise it helps the body “flush” out toxins that can build up over time. Removing toxins from the body will benefit your health overall but especially help healthy skin cell removal and production. The build up of dead skin cells can lead to dull and wrinkles skin. When your body can remove these build ups and function properly, your skin will look much more youthful and radiant.

So break out those yoga pants and try incorporating a workout into your daily routine. We know that with a job, kids, school or any number of other responsibilities it isn’t always easy to squeeze in a workout but remember that your body needs you to think about the long term benefits it could provide.

Looking for more great skin care advice? Check us out online at http://www.bellanina.com. We have some of the best skin care products available to keep you looking young and radiant.

Here at Bellanina we receive messages every day from women (and men!) looking for ways to look and feel better about themselves. The most common complaint we receive is just looking “tired” and “worn”. It seems that this New Year is the perfect opportunity to invite people to try something new and different, shake up their routine and not accept aging gracefully. After all, your age is just a number and at Bellanina we think people only improve with age.

Start by taking command. Look into the mirror after a shower and before you apply any make up or lotions. Really look at your skin and ask yourself, “What do I want to change?” Are you looking for smoother skin? Do you hate the sight of lines around your eyes or mouth? Or do you just want to feel and looked refreshed?

It is important to take this step because in order to truly take control, you must take action with this first step.

By being honest with yourself and your goals, it will be easier to target the best way to achieve them. Most people can’t afford or do not want to pursue drastic and invasive medical procedures (such as plastic surgery) and at Bellanina, we don’t think you should have to do this at all. With proper skin care and the right products, smoother and younger looking skin is not just a dream. It is a reality we can all have for our own.

Here is a simple checklist of areas to consider:

1) Eyes: Are there fine lines beginning to form around the corners or lids? This could be from squinting or rubbing this area. The tissue around the eyes is especially fragile and can be easily damaged or show premature signs of aging.

2) Mouth: As we get older the expressions we hold our faces in most often will eventually develop into lines around the face. “Laugh” or “frown” lines are especially common once people reach their mid thirties. This can be caused by a reduced elasticity in the skin and lowered collagen production.

3) Neck: As the skin begins to lose elasticity it can begin to “droop” in certain areas, especially the neck and chin.

4) Hands: The most overused and abused area of the body. Your hands are exposed to chemicals, weather, water, bacteria and all sorts of germs that can affect how their appearance. Lines, dryness and flaking are all common culprits of “old” looking hands.

5) Thighs and Stomach: At any age a common skin problem is cellulite. Small “dimpling” of the skin that can lead to a cottage cheese appearance. This can be minimized with corrective skin care products.

6) Uneven Skin Tone/Pigmentation: Brown spots, freckles or even patches of skin that don’t match your overall coloring can be minimized. If you have been living with these common issues but unsure of how to deal with them, take charge this year!

7) Facial/Body Acne: Blemishes can be an irritating and ongoing struggle. Don’t let this problem go on for another day!

We invite everyone to contact us and let us help you achieve your goals this year. Our highly trained staff welcomes questions and will help you design a daily routine that will reduce fine lines, smooth skin and replenish lost moisture. By taking the time to incorporate this into your morning routine you will begin to see the results faster than you can imagine.

So contact us today and let us help you achieve your New Year’s resolution! E-mail us your questions at operations@bellanina.com to receive expert advice on how to achieve your skin care goals in 2011!

Lotions, lotions everywhere but which one should you choose?

Have you ever stood before an aisle with over a hundred different types of skin lotions and felt that gnawing sense of being in over your head? Just like people are not the same, lotions are not the same either. A body lotion that is meant for your legs and arms has no business being spread across your face and a lotion meant for your eyes won’t have the results you want for dry hands.

Take the time to learn about why different lotions are available and which type to use for your skin. Remember that knowledge is the first step towards becoming a smarter consumer and one step further on the road to better skin care.

Body Lotion

As the name suggests, body lotion is meant to be applied to the larger areas of your body such as your arms, legs, stomach and chest. This area is generally covered by clothes and protected from the harsher elements of nature and sun (this of course changes in warmer months) and does not show signs of aging as quickly as the face, hands or neck.

Although there are many different brands and types of body lotion available, most have similar ingredients and characteristics. A general body lotion (not targeting any one specific skin type) will have more water than specialized lotions and can be used all over the main part of the body on a daily basis.

Facial Cremes

Unlike body lotions which offer the same benefits no matter where it is applied on the body, facial cremes are designed to target very specific problems and skin care issues. Since the skin on your face is thinner, it is more prone to premature aging and other skin issues.

Facial cremes are typically designed for a skin type and concern. If you had oily skin you would want an oil free moisturizer to hydrate the skin without adding excessive oils. If you had naturally dry skin you would want a thicker lotion with added oils designed to rehydrate those cells.

Mature skin that has developed fine lines and wrinkles or sagging tissue requires specialized ingredients designed to penetrate the outer layers and stimulate collagen production and restore elasticity. Although this will take time and dedication, a good skin care routine can help to minimize these issues.

Eye Creme

Even more specific is eye creme. This is usually a light-weight formula that should be applied very delicately. The tissue around the eye is very thin and delicate.  In addition, there are no oil glands directly beneath the eyes so greater moisturization helps keep wrinkles and fine lines at bay.  Select eye cremes with anti-oxidant protection to help with free radical damage from the sun.

Conclusion

Take the time to learn about conscientious skin cares and choose your products wisely. They will not do any good sitting in the cupboard when you realize they are not the best match for you so make an investment in the products that will keep you looking your best!

Are you looking for better ways to care for your skin? As the skin matures it loses elasticity, slows collagen production and can become less smooth to the touch. Fine lines and wrinkles are a natural part of the aging process but can be minimized with the help of high quality skin care products designed for aging, mature or damaged skin. As we move into a progressively more health conscious mind set it becomes more important to seek out natural or organic products to stay healthy and look our best at any age. Learn more about the healing and restorative benefits of Gotu Kola and Coconut Serum with Alpha Lipoic Acid.

What is Gotu Kola?

Vitamins, minerals and plants have been used for their restorative and health benefits for thousands of years. Ancient cultures relied upon different herbs and mixtures to cure disease, increase life span and heal wounds. Its no wonder that today many products still rely on those same natural ingredients to help restore and maintain the body.

Gotu Kola (centella asiatica) is a small plant that is native to several areas of the world including India, Sri Lanka and parts of Asia. It is a tasteless and odorless member of the parsley family.

How does it benefit the skin?

Gotu Kola (not to be confused with cola nut) has many uses in health and skin care. Some of the most important benefits for your skin include boosting circulation, improving the collagen foundation, improving firmness and increasing elasticity. This is beneficial for all skin types, including mature skin.
Gotu Kola serum is applied topically to the face and is worn beneath standard moisturizers and make up. It can be used in place of moisturizer for extremely oily skin types. Typically you would apply 2 to 3 drops on the face and rub in thoroughly. Remember that Gotu Kola, along with all other skin care products, will be most effective when used as directed. Patience is important when using any product and maximum benefits may take anywhere from 2 weeks to 3 months to be seen.
When used consistently and as directed Gotu Kola and Coconut serum can have wonderful restorative and repairing capabilities for the skin. This unique free-radical fighting blend of natural source vitamins and botanicals are delivered in a potent base of Alpha Lipoic Acid and DMAE that works on a molecular level to redefine and revitalize skin.

Why is Gotu Kola used specifically for skin care?

When selecting ingredients to use for skin care it is important to understand how certain ingredients affect the skin. Remember that different vitamins, minerals and plants will provide different benefits and should be selected carefully. Gotu Kola is used primarily for its impact on the metabolism of connective tissue, thereby stimulating the collagen production of the skin.

Precautions and Warnings

Your skin will absorb whatever products used on it and understanding potential risks and side effects is essential. Gotu Kola is an organic product but that does not mean that some people should not use Gotu Kola or that people with certain conditions should not consult with a doctor before use.
Consult with your doctor or pharmacy if you have liver disease, high cholesterol or diabetes. Children should not use Gotu Kola. The effect of Gotu Kola on unborn children is not known at this time – if you are pregnant consult with your health care practitioner before using products containing Gotu Kola. Consult with your doctor immediately if you develop any reaction or symptoms following use of products containing Gotu Kola such as rash, irritation, nausea, upset stomach, itching or swelling.

Just because you’re taking a break from reality doesn’t mean your skin won’t suffer the consequences. Whether you are heading to a tropical paradise or snowy ski resort, exposing your skin to the harmful elements can only lead to trouble. Be sure when you’re packing for your trip this holiday to include your Bellanina Basic Travel Kit.

Travel sized skin care products are small enough to carry easily in your purse or luggage and offer all the benefits of your home skin care regimen out on the road. Sun, cold wind, dirt and debris are all major causes of premature aging and skin conditions such as acne. It may seem like only a small break to you but every day matters in skin care and every day you leave your skin exposed is another step you’re going to need to take to repair the damage later on.

Bellanina Cleanser: A cleanser is the basic foundation of any skin care. Remember that soap can leave residue behind and therefore is not effective for truly cleaning your face and removing the build up of debris on your skin. Most soap actually has a drying effect on the skin and lead to dryness or flaking. A good cleanser should be non-abrasive and gentle remove residue without causing damage to the skin. Some cleansers contain a mild exfoliant (tiny beads or a grainy texture) that will remove dead skin cells at the same time.

Bellanina Toner: After cleansing use a clean cotton pad to apply a thin layer of toner over your face. Water has minerals that can be left behind and toner is the final clean up to ensure your skin is as clean as possible.

Botanical Moisturizer: Although removing excess oil and debris from your skin is essential to keeping it healthy, your skin thrives when it is well hydrated. After removing the natural oils it is important to rehydrate the skin with a light way, non greasy moisturizer. Using a moisturizer without excess grease and oils will prevent the skin from becoming clogged and leading to break outs. Bellanina moisturizer is great for all skin types.

Bellanina Body Lotion: Skin varies in different areas of the body and has different needs. Bellanina body lotion is a wonderful solution for dry hands, neck, chest, back and legs. Applying a thin layer after your shower or bath will rehydrate your skin and leave it feeling smooth all day long. The convenient travel size makes this easy to carry around during the day should you need a second application.

Bellanina Eye & Throat Crème: The skin around your eyes and neck is especially delicate and prone to wrinkles. Apply this lightweight moisturizer with your pinky to avoid pulling at the skin and causing damage. Massage in thoroughly and it will help to prevent fine lines and wrinkles. **Bonus Tip: Excessive squinting or grimacing can lead to wrinkles and premature aging in the face – try to remember to avoid doing this habitually to keep your skin looking smoother and younger.**

Bellanina Advanced Protection SPF30: Whether you are lying on a beach or hitting the slopes you need to cover up! The sun is detrimental to the skin and although you may be in a cold environment the sun can still cause burning. Apply at least an SPF30 every two hours (or following a swimming or showering) to protect your skin from the sun’s harmful rays. Remember that a beautiful tan today is leathery wrinkles ten years down the road.

Organic Lip Balm SPF15: Keep your lips smooth with this great organic lip balm. Dry lips can occur at any time during the year and this spf15 lip balm is a great way to protect your skin and give your lips the hydration they need to stay smooth and beautiful

The Bellanina Basics Travel kit comes in its own bag and can be easily added to your luggage or carry on bag. Don’t leave for your trip without these great essentials. It also makes a great holiday gift for friends, co-workers and family!

Have you ever sat down to study your complexion in the mirror and been less than satisfied with what your looking at? Your complexion is natural color, texture and appearance of your skin. Skin can look radiant, smooth and healthy or it can appear sallow, discolored and sickly depending on your state of health and how well you take care of your body and especially your skin.

The history of how a “good complexion” has been measured dates back to as early as ancient Greece and some of the most affluent philosophers of that age. The complexion was thought to be the result of four fluids that permeated the body. Later this was transformed into theories about balance in the body and temperaments. Health of an individual was determined by complexion but since complexions can vary between different individuals there was no one best complexion to have.

Your individual complexion is the result of biology. Skin color is determined by melanin in the cells and causes variation in tone. The overall health and appearance of your skin is determined by a variety of factors including your heredity and external factors like exposure to sun, chemicals or even the food you eat. Your skin is sensitive to the environment (both inside your body and outside) and taking proper care of your skin is an important step in maintaining a healthy complexion.

Improving your complexion doesn’t have to be a stressful task. Incorporating a simple skin care regimen into your morning or nightly routine can take years of stress and premature aging off your face. Start slow and build a routine that is custom tailored to your skins needs.

Tricks of the Trade:

1) Moisturize Daily – nothing is better for your skin than staying hydrated. Moisturize in the morning after cleansing the skin and at night before going to bed.

2) Exfoliate – Removing the dead skin cells that build up naturally over time can make a big difference in your skins natural ability to look fresh and smooth. Use a gentle exfoliant on your face and body to prevent premature fine lines and wrinkles from developing.

3) Correct now – Don’t wait for problems to become too significant to treat at home. If you notice dry patches, oily regions or uneven coloring use some preventative treatments designed specifically for your skin issue. Leaving a problem to “heal itself” can be more costly and time consuming to fix in the long run.

4) Protect Yourself – use a sun block even in the winter to protect your skin from sun damage.

5) Eat Right! Your body needs nutrients to stay healthy and your skin will reflect a balanced and healthy diet filled with vitamins, protein and minerals. Some natural ingredients (such as Vitamin C) will improve the overall look of your skin and they are frequently used in many skin care products.

Have you ever woken up in the morning, looked in the mirror and wondered what happened to your face during the night? It’s not just the lines on your face from a wrinkled pillowcase you notice but wrinkles on your cheeks and around your eyes and a puffiness that leaves you looking worse for wear despite a restful night.

Look at the culprit before you blame your age. Even youthful skin can fall victim to this common habit: poor sleep positions. Think about it in practical terms: if you are asleep an average of seven to eight hours a night (we can hope, right?), your skin is reacting to whatever position you assume during the night. Cramming your cheek into the pillow may feel most comfortable but stay like that for eight hours straight and it’s no wonder you wake up in the morning with wrinkles starting to form but on just one side.

Think there is no proof to back that up? Think again.

Side Sleepers

When we sleep on our side many things happen. Most important is a restriction of blood. Your skin thrives on blood and oxygen being distributed evenly thoughout the cells. Remember that your skin needs blood and oxygen to go through its normal process of developing new skin cells and exfoliating the old cells. Sleep is a great time for this process to occur because your skin is not being affected by external influences such as environment or being touched, scratched or wrinkled through normal everyday movements. When we sleep our skin and muscles relax, allowing them to rejuvenate the next day. When you nod off on your side you are placing pressure on one area of the skin and preventing this process from occurring.

Stomach Floppers

Some people can only sleep on their stomachs. There is absolutely no other way they can get comfortable and this is truly one of the worst ways to spend the night. Not only from a cardiovascular standpoint as sleeping on the stomach causes stress on the heart and chest but because it also restricts normal respiration. This impacts all areas of the body (not just the skin) and can have detrimental effects on your body and organs. If you want to think about what it is doing to your face it can cause puffiness, redness and because of the restricted blood flow, result in wrinkles and fine lines forming as early as your twenties. You will wake up looking like you just pulled a week worth of all night study sessions.

Back Drifters

This is truly the best position to sleep because it removes stress from the face and doesn’t place any undo stress on the skin. While a slightly tilted position isn’t the worst thing ever, the flatter you stay the better off you will look in the morning and in the long run. This will allow your skin to receive optimal oxygen and blood flow while releasing the normal tension the will create “blocked energy” on the face and release repetitive facial holding patterns many of us have during the day (such as furrowing the brows or frowning). It is these common behaviors that lead to prematurely aging skin and a disturbing image waiting for you in the mirror in the morning.

Simple Tricks

Many of us have one sleep position that is the most comfortable and no amount of research will change the fact that when we want to go to bed at night, it’s one way or no way. There are ways you can help “retrain” yourself to sleep on your back and start on the road to better skin.

Use pillows to hold your body in place. The body turns several times during the night so even if you end up falling asleep on your back you may very well wake up on your stomach. Try strategically placing a few pillows on your sides, around your legs or even your neck (beware any suffocation hazard if you are a heavy sleeper or take any medications that induce drowsiness) to prevent moving during the night.

If you absolutely cannot sleep on your back and need to sleep on your side, try switching to the softest fabric available for your pillow and sheets. Course fabrics will be more prone to damaging the skin and holding it in place. Smooth fabrics will free movement provide less stress on the skin.

Give your skin a running start by maintaining good hydration during the night. Dry skin is a common root of wrinkles so properly moisturizing before turning in for the night is a good way to prevent future damage. Try a light weight, oil-free moisturizer such as the Calendula Oil-Free Moisturizer to prevent the build up of uneccesary oils in the pores.

Remember that “beauty sleep” can be just that. Sleep is your body repairing and restoring itself for the day to come. Your skin needs to relax just as much as your tired feet or back so don’t overlook how you sleeping. Try to maximize your sleep so you wake up feeling and looking as refreshed as you want to be.

Microdermabrasion may sound like a scary procedure to undergo but in actuality it may be a wonderful alternative for those seeking a facial rejuvenation without going under the knife. More commonly referred to as microderm, this procedure is a non invasive way to remove the uppermost layer of dead skin cells from the face, neck, back, shoulders or anywhere else on the body. Techniques may vary but most practitioners will utilize a mechanical mechanism (such as crystals or bristle tips) and a small vacuum to clean up the removed skin cells.
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Exfoliation is a natural process undergone by the skin and although it occurs throughout our entire life span, the rate slows down considerably once we reach our thirties. Dead skin cells need to be shed by the body in order for new, healthy cells to reach the surface. As this process slows sometimes dead skin cells will cling to the surface and prevent those new skin cells from taking their place. Over time this will begin to form fine lines and wrinkles as dead cells accumulate on the surface. Microdermabrasion removes this outermost layer of the epidermis to get rid of this build up, allowing new cells to surface and improving circulation at the same time.

There are many benefits to microdermabrasion that can make it an ideal alternative to more drastic cosmetic procedures. By removing dead skin cells your skin will appear smoother, more even in tone and feel healthier. Microdermabrasion can help minimize the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles and acne scars. After undergoing treatment, skin care products will be able to penetrate the surface much better and be more effective to help maintain healthy, glowing skin.

Although it is best to get your initial treatment done by a trained professional, you can keep the fresh feeling going with an at home skin care treatment plan. Consult with your esthetician for their recommendations for your skin type if you are unsure or have any other skin conditions you would like to address. The use of proper skin care products and a regular routine at home will help your skin feel smoother, more even in tone and looking younger for years to come. Try a microdermabrasion cream at home following your initial treatment to prevent future build up. Remember to follow all instructions carefully and discontinue use of any product you have a negative reaction to such as rash, swelling, itching or redness.

Microdermabrasion is one way to keep your skin feeling fresh and rejuvenated. Your friends will be amazed at how fabulous you look after only one treatment and there is no need to go through a painful recovery period following your appointment. Look into your alternatives for skin care treatments and research local spa’s and estheticians in your area. You may be surprised at how easy it can be to beat the hands of time!

Have you ever wondered why facials are such a popular treatment? If you look at the services offered by almost every spa in the country, facials are among their most popular services. A facial is a beauty treatment for the face that traditional combines cleansing, exfoliation and moisturizes the skin to restore a youthful glow.

Facials should only be performed by licensed estheticians with specialized skin care training. A facial, although a pampering experience, still requires advanced knowledge of products and reactions. A trained esthetician will be able to offer a consultation to determine your individual skin care needs. In addition, some facials involve a process called extraction which is the removal of white or black heads from the skin and can lead to broken capillaries or skin discoloration if done improperly.

Masks are a popular product used during a facial. A mask typically contains minerals, fruits, oils or vitamins that are designed to rejuvenate the skin. Many natural ingredients provide the most effective skin care treatments and are becoming more popular. A facial will remove dead skin cells but another treatment goal is regenerating healthy skin cell production. As we age, this process can be slowed and lead to a dull and worn down appearance.

Before scheduling your next facial, take certain steps to ensure this experience will be positive and beneficial. Acquaint yourself with the different treatments available at your local spa so you can make an informed decision upon arriving. If you have any skin sensitivity, issues or allergies, let the spa know when you schedule your appointment or upon arrival so these can be accounted for. Finally, know your comfort zone and don’t be afraid to discuss any concerns you have with your practitioner. Go over the steps of the procedure

Have a self indulgent moment and book your next facial. It will leave your skin feeling smoother, fresher and brighter!