how yoga helps combat stress

Yoga has become the physical activity preferred for so many women because of the endless benefits that you will experience with it. It helps to reduce stress, tiredness, and even sleep problems, besides giving you a healthy body. But do you know that it can improve your skin?

Yes, this practice improves so many different aspects of your organism that one of the final results is glowing and healthy skin. At the same time, you will feel good about yourself and your surroundings, thanks to the release of good hormones that automatically changes your emotions and reactions.

Benefits of practicing yoga

Here I will show you the different benefits that yoga has, but just remember to have a safe practice and consult with a professional in the area, to fully understand how it works.

Blood circulation

To have good circulation in veins and arteries, and a healthy heart, you must move. Even when it can look slow and boring, this sport increases blood flow and heart rate with different movements and positions. A bad circulation raises the risk of heart problems, and you will feel tired and without energy, which contributes to dry skin and hair loss.

Oxygen flow

This is highly important for skin, because the oxygen flow gets rid of free radicals and other toxins from the body. The free radicals are behind the loss of collagen and elastin that are responsible for aging expressions like wrinkles and facial lines.

Digestion

Certain positions help with the natural process of digestion, just wait a couple of hours after the meal to go to the class. The deep breathing exercises also help with it, reducing the bloated feeling. With good digestion, the nutrients will find the correct place, and skin will have a good look.

Lower stress

Yoga is a great way to reduce stress levels because it helps to forget work, house, and other issues, you must highly concentrate on the movements. Besides, it helps you to get better sleep and feel calm and happy.

Hormones balance

Stress and daily routines are a detonator for an imbalance among the different hormones that are you in your body. Others are your monthly cycle, but this sport is a great way to control both, and hormones will not play strange games with your body and emotions. Skin will benefit from this because a good distribution will give you a good and healthy aspect.

Facial

Now, you can find new techniques like facial yoga, movements especially created for the face. These exercises are amazing for the face muscles and the skin there. You can practice them in the morning and before bed to start seeing results, giving you a youthful appearance.

Increase your energy

Yoga will increase your energy levels, giving you the opportunity to perform every activity scheduled for that day with 100% effort. Productivity will improve, and every single task will look like normal and easy to finish. This boost will also help with your feelings when you are full of energy you will feel happy and at ease.

yoga for stress and skin
Yoga is a perfect way to release stress.

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Retinoids are they good or bad

Many people live in a continuous love-hate relationship with retinoids.

They like its effects on the skin, especially long-term benefits but dislike the side effects that often come with its usage: irritation, redness, inflammation, peeling etc., especially at the beginning when the skin is acclimating to it.

However, it is an ingredient that has substantial scientific research to sustain claims of improving the overall physiology of the skin with a history that dates from the 1950’s initially acclaimed for the phenomenal effect that it had on acne patients.

Later, in the 1980’s it was revealed as the new gold standard for anti-aging for its capacity to work at a cellular level to improve skin functions and self-repairing abilities, improving lines and wrinkles and refining the skin texture for a more youthful appearance.

It is very important to first understand the different categories available in the market:

Retinoids are vitamin A compounds and derivatives of natural and synthetic origen and within them there are two main categories.

Prescription strength (retinoic acid, tretinoin, available in cream and gel formulations) and OTC formulas containing (retinol and various types of retinol derivatives often described as: Retinyl Acetate, Retinyl Linoleate, Retinyl Palmitate and Retinyl Proprionate; regularly found in many cosmetic products).

The two categories are often alleged to be similar, but the main difference is that retinol is eventually converted into retinoic acid. The skin uses vitamin A as retinoic acid, so the prescription strength formulas are readily available to be used by the skin.

On the other hand, Retinol is considered gentler on the skin but it takes longer time to reach the results of the prescription counterpart, since the skin has to convert it into retinoic acid, although it is still very effective if patience is not an issue to you.

Without further due, let’s take a closer look to some of the almost magical attributes of retinoids?

  • Encourages skin cell regeneration. This is a strong characteristic because it maintains skin normal functioning, thus preserving a more youthful performance.
  • Improves and supports normal skin tone helping to lighten hyperpigmentation from sun damage, post inflammatory and hormonal induced like melasma.
  • Stimulates the production of collagen and elastin
  • Minimizes the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles
  • With newer cells exposed and increased collagen and elastin production as well as hydration levels, the skin looks smoother and the appearance of pores is also improved.
  • Reduces and prevents the formation of blackheads, whiteheads (millias) and overall pore congestion.
  • Balances sebum production (skin natural humectant).

 

But just like everything else in life..

Things are not all white or all black. Retinoids also have their dark side and must be used with care to achieve  full benefits without causing any harm to the skin.

Here are some recommendations and important factors to consider to get the best use and results from retinoids:

  • It is not an ingredient that should be used if you are trying to become pregnant, if you are pregnant or if you are breastfeeding, in high doses it has been associated with birth defects.
  • A slow approach is better; this allows the skin to acclimate to it and minimize side effects, such as those mentioned earlier.
  • A small amount is enough to do the trick. A safer way to start is by using it every third night for a week or two, than every other night for a week and eventually every night or according to your physician recommendations. The ingredient is so effective that even when you use it a few times a week, you will still see results.
  • Apply it when the skin is fully dry to minimize risk of irritation
  • Keep it in a dark place to avoid the product from oxidizing and losing effect.
  • Do not mix with any exfoliating acids or other types of exfoliation. With that, I mean from products and also waxing, threading, sugaring, skin treatments like chemical peels or microdermabrasion etc. And if you still want to take a chance to do it, please go to a professional and let them know that you are using Retin-A. The skin will literally peel off and can leave a scar or result in post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation. If you are having a treatment done it is regularly recommended to suspend the use of Retin-A at least 4 to 7 days prior to the procedure depending on the treatment to avoid negative side effects.
  • Retinoic acid has also proven to improve the appearance of stretch marks, especially when they are in the initial state ( reddish color).

SOME HELPFUL TIPS:

The standard recommendation of use for Retin-A is during your night time skincare routine. If you have dry skin, a good tip is to wait 20 minutes after the Retin-A application and apply a simple hydrating moisturizer, this will prevent excessive dryness.

Since the skin can become more sensitive and drier, I suggest that you include in your skincare routine other products containing ingredients to fortify your lipid barrier and increase hydration.

Some great options are: hyaluronic acid, panthenol, ceramides, lipids, niacinamide. Anti-inflammatory ingredients are also great to minimize redness and irritation, like: aloe, allantoin and bisabolol.

THE MOST IMPORTANT TIP:

Because your skin becomes more sensitive to the sun when using retinoids, using a good formulated SUNSCREEN daily is crucial to prevent sun damage and to protect your new skin.

MY EXPERIENCE:

I like retinoids, the history is there. We know they work. I have been using them on and off for a long time and I find that it is an ingredient that if used with care you can get fantastic benefits from it.

In my case, I don’t mind being patient and for the sake of my skin, being so sensitive, I prefer to use retinol. I have tried Retin-A many times, but it has been too harsh for me, even the time- released formulations. My skin has its moments, and I normally must suspend its use when my skin begins to act up. 

I personally cannot tolerate it more than two to three times a week, but that is the perfect dosage for my skin. I see the difference and my skin does not become an angry mess. Your skin will be the judge as to how often is your magic formula.

If retinoids are in your list of favorite ingredients, I suggest you start using it at a lower strength and grow into a higher percentage considering your skin reactions, that will guide you to reach an adequate dosage and optimum result. Take into consideration though, that you must be persistent to achieve those results, using it sparingly just a few times a month is not enough to make a big difference.

Also, don’t feel discourage if you are not a retinoid person. There are many people that have tried it over and over and it simply is too aggressive for them to tolerate.

There are other options now in skincare far less invasive and with no side effects, like peptides or stem cells that work through cellular communication to encourage the skin to respond to specific functions like: collagen stimulation, improving lines and wrinkles, cell repair, skin firming etc. without inducing negative reactions or making the skin sensitive to the sun. That’s why I included them in Zkin Fix Age Reversal Serum. I find them to be very effective and safe with no risks or side effects involved.

I believe that it is not about using everything or every trend that comes out there. As a matter of fact, I think that well chosen ingredients do much more than too many ingredients which at the end, there is a big chance that are fillers and irritants that won’t do much to improve the skin.

Let your skin decide.

After all, your skin care is a journey of discovery. Experiment with care and enjoy all the steps.


Thank you very much for being here.

Until next time,

Dora Salazar

Medical Aesthetician

Founder of Zkin Fix Skincare

 

 

“Natural” does not always mean “gentle.”

Lately, I have seen a lot of information recommending to apply lemon juice on your face. It is important to know the risks and if you apply it how to do it correctly to avoid negative side effects, including burns or hyperpigmentation.
The fame of lemon as a skin brightener comes from lemon juice containing vitamin C (ascorbic acid), well known for making the skin look more radiant.
However, lemon juice also contains citric acid and malic acid. With a low pH ranging between  2 to 3, it is way more acidic than your skin normal pH which about 5.5. creating an exfoliating action.
Acids need to be treated with care because they can cause a lot of damage to the skin if you don’t handle them properly. Although a few drops in a mask can be helpful for its astringent and clarifying properties, I am not an advocate of using pure lemon juice directly on the skin, especially if you have sensitive skin. It can cause rashes and irritation and the skin becomes more vulnerable and sensitive to the sun.
Also, it’s not a good idea to apply lemon juice on your face in the morning, you will run a huge risk of getting hyperpigmentation when your face gets exposed to daily sun light. Another important thing to know is that citric acid is an alpha hydroxy acid; therefore, it needs to be neutralized. So, if you use lemon juice make sure to rinse it off with water thoroughly to bring the pH back to normal and stop the exfoliating effect. I have seen cases where people had been drinking beer or tequila shots with lemon by the pool or the beach and the lemon touching the hands or the mouth when left on the skin and in contact with the sun caused terrible burns.
If you decide to use it, treat it as an acid and always use a well formulated sunscreen with an spf 30 or higher to protect the skin.
However; keep in mind, that daily use can cause too much exfoliation and eventually incur in hypersensitivity and irritation creating post inflammatory hyperpigmentation.
If your concern is dark spots or dull skin, there are many effective skin brighteners, — yes, including vitamin C,—  but blended into skincare formulations like serums or moisturizers for example, that are safer to use and better tolerated than  pure lemon juice. These are known as tyrosinase inhibitors, tyrosinase being an enzyme that is fundamental in the production of melanin. So, by controlling the production of this enzyme the melanin or pigment of the skin becomes lighter.

Some of the best tyrosinase inhibitors are :

  • Kojic Acid
  • Azelaic Acid
  • Arbutin
  • Licorice Extract
  • Mulberry Extract
  • N-Acetyl Glucosamine

Always keep in mind that everyone’s skin is different and what worked for someone else might not be the best for you. Another thing to consider is that not all natural ingredients are gentle, it is important to do some research before applying something new on your skin, and if in doubt, do a patch test first on the side of your neck and wait 24 to 48 hours to determine if it is suitable for your skin.

Thank you very much for being here.

Until next time,

Dora Salazar

Med. Aesthetician

Disclaimer:

The article above represents my personal opinion and it is intended for educational purpose only.

Acclaimed by celebrities and beauty professionals,

Microneedling is all the rage in skincare treatments at the moment and for a good reason. It can literally transform your skin and even erase some years from your face.

But how can tiny needles help you defeat the effects of time?

One of the main causes of aging is the loss of collagen and elastin which becomes more palpable year after year, especially as the level of estrogen starts to drop more dramatically. These tiny needles create micro-channels in the skin that signal the presence of a minute injury and despite the minuscule nature of the wound it is enough to induce the production of new collagen also working as a vehicle to facilitate deeper absorption of active ingredients.

Professional in office treatments are more powerful but at home treatments are gaining popularity, even some skincare companies offer the roller as part of their daily routine. For the purpose of this article I will refer to the use of the handheld roller used at home which can also provide great results when used properly.

Either you are already a big fan of the needling or are eager to put the big hype to the test,  here are some tips that will help you take your treatment to the next level:

EXFOLIATE BEFORE THE FIRST TREATMENT

Removing dead skin cells before the first treatment will help you achieve more even results allowing the roller to run smoothly and avoiding tugging or pulling of the skin and also improving absorption of the nutrients. It is not necessary to do it all the time but I have found to really make a difference in the results, on the first treatment.

KEEP THE SKIN MOIST

Keeping your keep moist with the serum while performing the rolling prevents causing more irritation and in addition, you take advantage of the momentum when the skin is more readily able to absorb the product.

SELECT INGREDIENTS THAT CAN HELP IMPROVE YOUR SKIN CONCERN

There are thousands of ingredients out there that promise to improve the skin. However, the only ones that will make a difference to your skin are those that can help your personal needs.  Either you suffer from acne scars, hyperpigmentation or want to improve lines and wrinkles…the serum you select is as important as the procedure so choose a product that contains ingredients to help improve your skin concerns that way you will see faster results.

MORE IS NOT BETTER

Controlled inflammation is expected in this treatment but don’t get too carried away wanting to over treat the skin. Too much inflammation increases free radical activity and guess what… it translates into… “oxidation” which in fact ages you, so as you can see.. more is not always better.

Although some manufacturer’s recommend the daily use of the roller, as a professional I prefer to  treat the skin two times maximum three times a week. Also you must consider the needles size in the roller you are using. It is not same to use a 0.25mm than a 0.50mm or a 1mm. The higher the number the more aggressive the treatment so the recovery time should be accordingly.  That way you allow the skin to replenish its protective barrier and restore its integrity avoiding negative side effects.

Also avoid other type of exfoliants  or irritating ingredients after the treatment, it will only causes excessive inflammation and sensitivity.

POST CARE

The following day is normal to feel the skin a little sensitive and it might even tingle a little if you exercise.  Because a natural micro-exfoliation (desquamation) occurs the skin can feel a little dry or rough. It happens in a microscopic level so you might not see the peeling but you can feel the difference in the skin texture. Stay away from heat, internal or external like direct sun, hot showers or saunas to avoid getting post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation. It is crucial to maintain the skin well-hydrated at all times and to use a sunblock daily.

DESINFECT THE ROLLER EVERY TIME

Although in a minute scale, this is a treatment where the skin is being pricked which makes it more vulnerable to bacteria. Make sure you wash your hands before you do the treatment (using gloves is best) and sanitize the roller every time you use it. Follow the manufacture’s cleaning instructions.  Denture cleaning tablets are recommended by many Companies. Once clean, the roller should be stored in a closed case to protect it from getting contaminated.

Like the old say says:  “no pain, no gain”… well… when it comes to beauty and anti-aging treatments most people will be willing to ignore the pain if they see the gain! So what do you think my friend?

Are you ready for a prick?

Thank you for being here.

Until next time,

Dora Salazar

Medical Aesthetician