Archives for posts with tag: benefits

Every day we are presented with new articles discussing the drawbacks of consuming too much caffeine. Not so well known however, are the many benefits caffeine provides for your skin. Take a few moments to learn about one of the latest trends in the skin care industry.

We all known that caffeine is commonly associated with drinks and foods we consume such as coffee, tea and chocolate. What might not have caught your attention is the growing number of skin care products which now include caffeine for its many beneficial qualities.

Why caffeine?

Caffeine contains antioxidants which make it very effective when used topically on the skin. It can constrict small blood vessels and reduce inflammation which can be very effective for certain skin concerns such as puffiness and darkness around the eyes. Research has indicated that caffeine has many potential benefits in skin care and has seen an increase in use since 2003.

Potential Benefits:

There are several ways caffeine can be used to help your skin look better. It is important to remember that these results are not long term.

Eyes: Caffeine can decrease the appearance of puffiness and dark circles.

Redness: Caffeine is an anti-inflammatory which means it can help reduce the appearance of redness.

Anti-oxidant: Caffeine is not the strongest anti-oxidant available in skin care but it can help reverse free radical damage.

Oily skin: Many products designed for oily skin contain caffeine because it may block certain enzymes that contribute to acne.

Our Favorite:

Blueberry & Coffee Bean Exfoliating Cleanser: This deep-cleansing lotion contains a multitude of high-powered anti-aging antioxidants, including coffee bean, resveratrol, blueberry, grape, cocoa seed and a papaya enzyme. Small beads gently exfoliate dead skin cells, revealing a smoother more youthful appearance.

Conclusion

Caffeine in skin care products is one of many ingredients used to provide temporary benefits to the skin. Although it cannot “correct” dark eyes in the long run, it can have great short term benefits. Remember that quality skin care products will use a wide range of ingredients to produce maximum benefits. Research new products carefully and always use as directed.

Learn more online at www.bellaninainstitute.com

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With so many types of massage and alternative therapies available today, it can be difficult to understand just what services a massage therapist is offering to you when you book an appointment at your local day spa. Although you don’t need to understand the intricacies of every type of massage out there, a basic understanding of any service you are about to receive is important for you and the therapist. The key to massage is clear communication between the therapist and client so your needs are met and the therapist can adjust treatment for your specific goals and requirements.

Reiki massage does not actually exist as a type of massage therapy. Reiki actually refers to the usage of spiritual energy to heal a person’s aura or situation. Massage can be incorporated into massage therapy however and many massage therapists receive training to combine the two practices and promote spiritual and physical well-being. But what should you, as a client, expect during your visit?

A typical Reiki massage will begin at the head and the therapist will cover the seven chakras or energy centers of the body. Reiki massage would be very different for someone expecting a traditional massage that involves kneading and muscle work. A therapist performing Reiki will actually keep their hands still during the appointment and the healing energy is sent through channels from the practitioner to the client.

A massage without muscle work may not seem like a massage to you so let’s take a look at what the benefit of Reiki massage offers to clients. Reiki is used to treat many different conditions including TMJ (sometimes called lock-jaw), muscle pain, tension, stress and injury healing and pain management (just to name a few).

Reiki massage does not require skin-to-skin contact and as a client, you should experience no ill side effects from this type of treatment. Reiki therapists are taught meditation and hand placements for the seven areas of the body. Reiki therapists transfer energy to the body and remove negative energy – treatment for different conditions or concerns may be fast or occur over a period of time. This is true of any type of therapy as severe conditions may require extensive treatments to obtain maximum benefits.

Reiki massage is certainly not for everyone and this article is not meant to encourage reiki as an alternative to more traditional therapies for medical conditions. Understanding treatments offered is the first step towards becoming a more knowledgeable client and make your massage therapy beneficial. If you don’t believe in or support Reiki try working with your massage therapist to find a type that is more aligned with your needs and goals.

As Western culture seeks new and more holistic methods for treating certain ailments, there are many that have been brought over from China and Japan and slowly introduced into United States culture. Always consult with your primary health care physician before utilizing any alternative therapies to know if they are safe and recommended. Some medical conditions are not conducive to receiving massage and any known medical problems should be reported to your massage therapist prior to your session.

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.

Have you ever tried to nod your way through a conversation without really understanding what someone is talking about?

It is not your job to understand every skin treatment available but when you receive a service at a spa it is nice to understand what the heck they are doing and why. Paraffin wax is one of those delicious spa terms we hear all the time but may have no clue about what it truly means.

Why is it important to learn? The same reason it is important to read instructions before you take a medicine. Anything that touches or enters your body will have an effect on it and as a wise consumer it is important to know about what a product is doing, why it is being used and most important – any possible side effects.

So what’s the skinny on paraffin wax?

In the simplest terms, paraffin wax treatments are utilized in spas to moisturize and soften the skin. They are usually reserved for the toughest areas of skin on the body such as the hands and feet. Many spas will offer this treatment as part of or as an optional addition to manicures or pedicures.

Paraffin waxes are different from other types of waxes used in spas in that it is softer (due to paraffin oil). It melts at a much lower temperature than other waxes and will not burn or blister the skin when it is submerged. In many spas, the wax is heated in special vats prior to a treatment.

So what does the treatment entail?

Paraffin wax is designed to coat the skin and left to absorb for up to half an hour to see the full benefits. An esthetician or beautician may have the client submerge their hands or feet several times in container of this wax to create an even coat over the surface. The hands and feet would then be wrapped in plastic (or some other type of non absorbent material).

After the treatment the wax is removed in a single piece. Because of the oil, this wax does not bind to the skin and can come off easily without pain. Skin should feel soft and smooth following a paraffin treatment.

When would I get one done?

Paraffin wax treatments can be done all year but they are especially ideal in the winter (colder climates particularly) since they can help to repair dry and cracked skin. Remember the skin needs moisture to stay smooth and during the winter it can lose a lot of moisture throughout the day without being properly replenished.

Who should avoid this treatment?

People with diabetes tend to have trouble with submersion of the feet into warm liquids so this treatment is not recommended.

Pregnant woman can receive this treatment but should remember that chronic foot swelling is common and a treatment that utilizes heat will not benefit this condition. Try looking for treatments that use cold or cooling methods to ease this problem.

If you have any type of foot condition such as fungus or athletes foot it is important to tell your therapist prior to treatment. To avoid contamination of the wax they may need to prepare an alternative way of applying the treatment.

Final Thoughts

Trying out a new treatment is always an exciting prospect at the spa. Paraffin wax is an excellent and soothing choice for those seeking an effective solution for dry or rough skin. Call your local day spa to set up an appointment. Go with confidence now that you know what you need to know!

Other Choices:

After receiving your paraffin wax it is important to maintain that soft and silky skin. Why not try a baby smooth foot creme to keep for toes and heels looking great all year! For your hands try the soothing touch hand cream – guaranteed to keep your fingers luxuriously soft!

There are many dramatic ways to make an impact on your appearance. If you’re looking for a way to get smoother skin and a healthy glow, consider making an appointment at your local day spa for a chemical peel. Peels are considered to be a faster, cheaper and much less invasive than other more dramatic steps (such as plastic surgery).

What is a peel?

A peel utilizes a chemical solution that is specifically designed to remove dead skin. Essentially it “peels” away a layer of dead skin cells to reveal the smoother and less wrinkled skin below. Although going to a dermatologist is not required to receive this treatment, it should only be performed by a professional who has received training in this procedure and is licensed (such as a dermatologist, esthetician or plastic surgeon).

What Kinds of Peels Are There?

There are several types of chemical peels available and which would be most appropriate for you depends largely on what your desired results are. There is no “one size fits all” and understanding your options will help you in your decision.

Alpha Hydroxy Acids – This is the mildest form of peel designed to target fine lines and wrinkles, areas of dryness, uneven pigmentation and acne. Alpha Hydroxy Acids (AHA’s) are naturally occurring carboxylic acids. These can also be combined with certain cleansers to be used on a daily basis to improve skin texture.
Note: This is a mild peel but may still cause stinging, redness, irritation, dryness or take multiple treatments to achieve desired results.

Beta Hydroxy Acids – This type of peel is sometimes used over stronger AHA peels because it can penetrate the skin deeper. This primarily uses a salicylic acid that will control excess oil, acne and remove dead skin cells.

Retinoic Acid Peel – This is derived from retinoids (which is denatured vitamin A). This type of peel is much deeper than Beta peels and would be used to remove scars as well as wrinkles and pigmentation issues. Note: The peel is left on the face and the peeling process usually occurs on the third day.

Trichloroacetic acid peels – this is as an intermediate to deep peeling agent in concentrations ranging from 20-50%. It is preferred for people with darker skin tones over Phenol peels. It will be used to smooth out fine lines and wrinkles, remove superficial blemishes and correct skin pigment problems.
Note: This may require several treatments to obtain desired results. You will need to use sun block for several months following this treatment (required). It can take several days to heal depending on the depth of treatment – consult with your technician for further information.

Phenol Peels – This is the strongest type and is a deep skin peel. The phenol is actually a carrier for another component in the peel, croton oil, which is the active ingredient. The effects of this peel are extremely long lasting (up to 20 years) and a single treatment can usually be sufficient to obtain the desired results.

Considerations

Chemical peels may require several treatments to receive maximum benefits but are considerably less expensive than plastic surgery and do not require long recovery times. They can be performed on an outpatient basis with your dermatologist or at your local day spa. Consult with your technician or doctor about the benefits and risks of any treatment you are considering.

Final Thoughts

If you are looking for dramatic results but do not want to pursue surgical options, a chemical peel may be a good step for you. Research peels available in your area and ask questions. Smoother, younger looking skin is possible and can be achieved with proper skin care. Remember to ask questions and study your options carefully.

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.