Archives for category: Skin Care

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Eating foods with anti-inflammatories help to boost your immune system and promote healthy skin, for instants; foods like dark leafy greens and those rich in fatty acids, like sardines, fish oils, Indian gnee and flax seeds.

Keeping skin nourished with healthy fatty acids and fats, like coconut, avocado and olive oils, help your body absorb minerals and vitamins.  Fatty acids help repair and renew skin cells and promote a hormonal balance.

Depending on your skin concerns there are different things your can do to help de-stress your skin:

For Eczema- to prevent additional inflammation, drink immune supportive tea made from reships, echinacea and chamomile.  You can also apply room temperature tea bags to irritated skin for relief.  Avoid inflammatory chemicals, artificial dyes, harsh soaps and laundry detergents, and cleansers and disinfectants like chloride.

For Acne & Breakouts- these can be caused by bacteria, pregnancy, menopause and hormonal shifts.  Eat nutrient-rich foods and use skin care products that contain Vitamin C, antioxidant-rich ingredients like green tea, willow bark, tea tree oil, juniper and rosemary extracts.  Exfoliate both face and body regularly with willow bark or other antiseptic ingredients to help minimize breakouts.

For Dermatitis- symptoms of dermatitis can include; swelling, itching, burning and blotchy redness.  Severe symptoms are blisters, crusting, and oozing.  The causes are mostly from allergies or physical contact, for example, with synthetic fragrances, colorings, alcohol, FD+C dyes and synthetic preservatives.  Vitamin-rich ingredients with antiseptic qualities like antioxidant-rich elderflower, peppermint, aloe, witch hazel and calendula can help heal dermatitis.

For Redness + Rosacea- this is triggered by sun exposure, primarily.  Symptoms include redness around checks and nose, broken blood vessels, bumps that look like pimples, swollen or painful vein, stringing, itching and flushing easily.  The exact cause of rosacea is unknown, although it is most common in women ages 30-50 and fair-skinned people.  Treatments include topical vitamins, anti-inflammatory herbs, like turmeric, and skin soothing ingredients, like aloe and especially seed oils, like carrot and calendula.  Calendula contains bisabolol, an anti-inflammatory compound, because of this it helps reduce redness associated with rosacea by calming skin.  Switch to mineral-based makeup, use products with calming plants with antihistamine-like qualities, and healing herbs like sage and jasmine.

The three most important things about starting your massage practice: set clear goals, understand your budget and create a professional image.

Your Goals:  Write down specific concrete goals you would like to accomplish and the specific time period in which you would like them to be completed.  Some goals would be:  What amount of income you’d like to make by the end of your first year, any additional certificates you wish to earn, and other business related goals.  Also, write down what is standing in the way of you achieving these goals, and what steps you need to take to overcome these obstacles.  Seek advice from a mentor or successful colleague and try to connect with them regularly.

Your Budget:  Create a realistic budget before opening your business.  Make sure you consider your living expenses while you grow your cliental.  Being self-employed doesn’t always mean you will bring home a paycheck.  Figuring out your break-even point is crucial; what are the costs and overhead you need to stay afloat.  Depending on your location, keep in mind rent, utilities, internet and phone, furnishings, equipment, licensing, insurance, taxes, supplies, advertising, etc.  It’s always good to keep a plan B in mind.  If you need to book 18 services a week to break-even but are only booking 13, then you are losing money.  Most people can’t continue on without hitting or exceeding their break-even point.  Remember, you still haven’t even paid yourself at this point.  For example, if your expenses total to $1200 for the month and you charge $65 per service, you would need to perform at least 19 services that month just to break-even.  You also need to keep in mind your personal living expenses, rent/mortgage, car payment, insurance, credit card payments, utilities, phone and cable, child care, groceries, etc.  If your personal expenses, for example, total $2800, added to your business expenses would equal $4000.  This would mean, just to break-even you would need to provide at least 62 services at $65.  This means you would need to do about 15-16 services a week.  Again, this wouldn’t result in any salary of your own, nor would it account for any vacation time or adding unexpected expenses.  Make sure you’re realistic about the ability to sustain your business before you begin your transition to self-employment.

Your Image:  Create your image from day one and keep that in mind with all aspects of your business.  This image you present will be represented in many ways, not just the look and feel of your location but also in the way you and your staff dress, your logo and the way in which you market your business.  For example, most people don’t know what LMT means, consider spelling it out (Sarah Johnson, Licensed Massage Therapist) to ensure clarity.   You can also bring out the style you like to convey but still show the public who you are with your business name.  For example, Sarah Johnson Massage Center, Sarah’s Day Spa, Johnson Medical Massage Therapy or Sarah’s Mind & Body Healing; all of these have a clear message but convey very different atmospheres.  Remember not to use a vague name, like Sarah’s Center, people need to know what services you are providing.

You should, also, consider your image when it comes to your marketing.  This day and age people automatically assume all businesses have a website, this is crucial for your business and now websites are typically pretty cheap to make and maintain with many easily accessible templates available.  Offering your full menu, appointment booking, gift cards, and social media links, like Facebook, on your website can be a great way to maintain current cliental and intrigue new clients.  Again, don’t forget about your image when it comes to your online presents.  If you have a modern urban spa feel at your location, don’t put pictures of beaches throughout your website.  Business cards are also very important.  A great way to expand your business is to go to local establishments like banks, boutiques, cafes and hair salons asking if they would display your card, this is great free advertising.  Also, carry your business cards around with you at all times to hand to potential new clients.  Another great way to advertise in an inexpensive way, is to make reusable bags or t-shirts and wear/use them around town as you do your usual errands.  Consider your logo in this regard, keep your image in mind.  A logo of business card that includes a board certified image gives an entirely different feel than one with a yin yang symbol.

Lastly, think about what you and your employees should wear regularly to continue the image you are looking for.  Are you more medical?; then go with scrubs.  Or maybe you like a spa feel; consider a semi-casual all black look, this helps the focus stay on the client without being overly formal.  Whatever you choose, remember, cohesion is key.

In conclusion, set concrete but achievable goals, budget carefully and realistically, and create the image you want to make your business successful.  There are many visions of success, make sure this one is defined by you.

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Honey has been used in ayurvedic, or whole-body, medicines dating back over 3,000 years.  It has been a favorite of nutritionists, dietitians and naturopaths due to its extraordinary health benefits. It is also widely used for its therapeutic effects.  Honey contains nearly 200 substances; it is rich in natural sugars like fructose and glucose along with essential vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, fructo-oligosaccharides, and amino acids.  It also contains flavonoids, phenolic, acids, ascorbic acid, tocopherols, catalase, superoxide, dismutase, reduces glutathione, and peptides.  Honey is anti-viral, wound healing; it is used to treat chronic skin ulcers.  It increases cell growth and provides antimicrobial activity.  Honey promotes cell proliferation and anti-aging of the skin.

The Bellanina Honeylift Invigorating Massage Lotion improves hydration and exfoliates the skin while bringing cellular rejuvenation to dull, lackluster skin.  Through tappotment massage strokes, blood and oxygen is circulated, tissue is cleansed and a rosy glow is imparted to the face.  Tapping on major acupressure points gives a deeper level of relaxation while clearing energy meridians of stagnant chi and providing healing benefits to other organs of the body.  Honey is an antibacterial and has been found to provide immune system support.

A key component of the Bellanina Facelift Massage treatment, Bellanina Honeylift Invigorating Massage Lotion is made from pure, organic honey and orange blossom essential oil.  This sophisticated massage lotions softens and revitalizes the skin while providing antibacterial benefits and immune system support.  Honey stimulates the regrowth of tissue, strengthens capillaries and the fibroblasts needed for healing.  It also encourages the dermis to develop new connective tissue and speeds up the growth of epithelial cells.  Honeylift is designed to delight your senses and provide wonderful, natural face-lifting benefits.

This natural and delicious ingredient could only be referred to as liquid gold.

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Rosewater is created through steam distillation of rose petals and is often used in toners and facial spritzes, like our Bellanina Rosewater Mineral Toner.  Rosewater has a high concentration of Vitamin A and C and antioxidants that help to hydrate the skin.  It is often recommended for clients with sensitive skin or conditions like rosacea because of its anti-inflammatory properties that help to calm and soothe skin irritations and flare-ups.  Rosewater, also, has antibacterial properties that make it beneficial for clients with acne.  Additionally, it can help to uplift the mood and increase spirits!

Our Bellanina Rosewater Mineral Toner is unique in containing hydrating and astringent components such as witch hazel, Dead Sea salts and aromatic rosewater.  The witch hazel reduces inflammation, soothes, and heals and the Dead Sea salts purify and re-mineralize.  The rosewater softens, reduces inflammation, refreshes, moisturizes and soothes the skin; tones, cleanses, and has a regenerating effect.  Clients love the natural rose fragrance and often mist it over their entire bodies after bathing before applying moisturizer for even more hydration.  Stay Rosy!

 

Rethink Your Moisturizer

That light and creamy moisturizer you used all summer isn’t going to cut it when the weather is cold and dry and humidity levels are low. Find thcopper peptidee right moisturizer for your skin type and add a skin serum underneath for additional hydration. For example, if you have acne prone skin, try Bellanina Botanical Calendula Oil Free Crème using our Copper Peptide Serum as an additional hydrator underneath. For dry skin, you want to use a moisturizer with oils such as safflower or soybean.   Our Restorative Marine Moisturizer with soybean oil is tops for hydrating in the cold winter months.

 Rethink How You Bathe

Although it is tempting to take a long, hot shower or bath when it is chilly outside, it prevents your skin from retaining all of the moisture it needs. A hot shower or bath affects the outer layer of the skin called the epidermis which has cells called keratinocytes. These cells, loaded with keratin (also found in hair and nails), provide the body’s defense against the outside environment and help to provide the barrier to allow your skin to retain moisture. In addition, your body produces a thin layer of oil on the skin’s surface to help this moisture retention.

Here’s what happens. The heat from your shower or bath softens your skin’s oils. Just think of how butter reacts when it is heated. When you add soap to the equation, your skin’s oil barrier can get quickly stripped away. Without these oils, the moisture in your skin escapes, leading to dryness and itching. The longer and hotter the shower, the faster this process takes place and the more moisture you’re likely to lose.

So, keep your shower or baths as brief as possible with lukewarm water. Don’t rub, but pat yourself dry and be sure to apply your body/face moisturizers within a minute after bathing while your skin is still slightly damp.

Exfoliation Is Even More Important In The Winter

Let’s talk about why. Cold, dry air coupled with intermittent bursts of hot, dry air indoor heating sucks the moisture out of cells, leaving skin feeling tight, dull and sometimes flaky. Cell turnover doesn’t actually slow down during the winter months, however, the weather extremes between hot and cold cause skin cells to ‘die’ faster as they dehydrate. As we age, our rate of skin cell turnover is reduced making exfoliation even more important.

Very gentle, exfoliation twice a week will wash away these dead cells at the surface, to reveal smoother, younger looking skin. Also, exfoliators improve the effectiveness of moisturizers. Since you will be using even more monew_jojobacroppedisturizing lotions and creams in the winter, you’ll want to exfoliate to maximize their hydrating potential.

There are two main types of exfoliants: chemical and physical.  Our Cosmeceutical Glycolic Cleanser is an example of a chemical exfoliant that contain glycolic acid. Our Jojoba Exfoliating Cleanser is a physical exfoliant that employs natural jojoba beads to “scrub” away the dead cells.  It is always important to apply moisturizing cream or lotion to the skin immediately after exfoliation for the maximum hydrating effect.

Don’t Forget Your Lips

Always use lip balm or petroleum jelly to both moisturize and create a protective barrier between your lips and the cold, dry winter air. airlipvibran-c balm when you are doing the rest of your skin care, make it part of your routine. If your lips are particularly chapped, you can make your own lip scrub to smooth aways the dead flaky skin. All you need to do is apply a generous amount of petroleum jelly to your lips and then rub them with a little sugar or a soft toothbrush using circular motions. Remember to be gentle and that all of the flaky skin may not come off in one treatment! You can also use our Vibran C lip treatment with lots of Vitamin C to repair your chapped lips.

Give Your Feet A Good Night’s Rest

For dry, callused feet, gently buff away the calluses with a pumice stone or foot scrub before bed. Immediately apply a thick moisturizer while your feet are still damp and wear socks made of natural fabric overnight. If that doesn’t do the trick, then up your game with an over the counter cream containing glycolic acid or urea that will exfoliate as well as moisturize. If you do that for a month, you should see some great results!

 

Protect your face from the sun by wearing sunblock. Apply moisturizer on your hands after washing to restore lost hydration. Exfoliate your body during your shower or bath to remove dead skin cells.

All this is wonderful advice but when is the last time someone told you to take care of your elbows?

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Elbows, that’s right. This skin is exposed to just as much (if not more) damage as the rest of your body but is      usually overlooked when you begin to develop a skin care routine.

Take a look at your elbows now: is the skin dry, rough, or even darker in color than the rest of your arm? Do      you routinely lean your elbow against a desk or wall? How often do you take the time to really moisturize your elbows at night or in the morning?

The skin on your elbows is thicker to protect your elbow bone. It is much thicker than the skin around your eyes, for example. This means that it is designed to withstand more exposure to abusive activities but it does not mean it is immune to being damaged as a result.

Thicker skin is more prone to dryness, especially in the winter. Add to that exposure to rough surfaces such as wood or plastic (from leaning on a desk perhaps?) or even your clothes can all cause your skin to become dry and rough.

The solution?

Usually a regular moisturizer won’t be a remedy since this skin is so thick. It requires extra care. So the first step is to remember to EXFOLIATE your elbows in the shower. Exfoliation removes the built up dead skin cells. A proper skin care routine should routinely exfoliate your skin (the whole body, not just the face) every other day.

Deep treatment is usually needed to reverse the existing damage to your elbows. Petroleum jelly is a wonderful (and inexpensive) way to help restore lost moisture. Apply a thick coat to your elbows at night (cover with a cloth to protect your sheets – an old sock with the toes cut off would work wonderfully) and repeat for 5-10 days.

After 5-10 days, apply a body lotion (avoid any containing alcohol as this can irritate and dry skin out) every day. Remember to keep exfoliating your skin to prevent a reoccurrence.

Still not working?

You may need to check with a dermatologist to rule out any other skin concerns or conditions which may be resulting in dry skin. A dermatologist can prescribe stronger treatments to help reduce dryness and reverse the problem if there is an underlying medical condition.

Final thoughts

Treat your skin with love and care – remember that proper daily skin care can prevent signs of aging and more serious skin conditions from developing. As we age, your skin will require more care to maintain a healthy, youthful glow but when incorporated as part of your daily routine (like working out) the benefits will far outweigh the time you need to spend maintaining your skin every day. Learn more online at www.bellaninainstitute.com.

Everyone at some point in their life will have chapped lips. Whether it is a mild annoyance or a serious interference on your everyday life, chapped lips should never just be ignored.

What causes chapped lips?

Chapped lips can occur for many reasons. Common causes include:

  • Dry/Cold weather: During the winter especially, staying inside and relying on forced air can dry out the skin, especially the lips and lead to cracking skin.
  • Medications: certain medications, such as those containing retinoids, high doses of vitamin a or certain chemotherapy medications can lead to dry skin, especially in the lips.
  • Dehydration: a lack of hydration affects all areas of your body, including the delicate skin on your lips.
  • Frequently licking your lips: it may sound counter-intuitive but frequently licking your lips can actually remove moisture and cause your lips to feel drier and begin to crack. Side note: bacteria from your mouth can enter these tiny cracks and cause infections – this can lead to serious medical problems that require medication.

How can they be fixed?

The good news is many over-the-counter remedies will work to smooth your lips and restore proper hydration. Here are some simple tips to remember:

  • Your lips need to be protected just like the rest of your skin. Choose a lip balm with SPF to prevent any damage from UV rays.
  • Avoid flavored lips balms which encourage licking as these will remove the balm and cause your lips to dry out further.
  • Lips balms with aloe vera and vitamin e may help to reduce redness and irritation.
  • Reapply frequently as lip balm gets removed by daily activities such as talking and eating.

One product that really works is Vibran C .  

When to seek medical attention

Persistent dry lips which do not respond to at-home treatment options should be looked at by a medical professional. Remember that your skin is an indicator of overall health and you should not ignore persistent skin issues, even if they seem inconsequential.