Posts Tagged wrinkles

Cold Weather = Dry Skin

Posted on October 19, 2009 with No Comments

For many of us it only took a matter of a few days as we saw temperatures drop from the mid-60′s to the mid-30′s as colder, drier weather hit us fast. Chicago, Buffalo, and Philadelphia are being hit with the earliest snow falls on record (even New England played football in the snow this weekend!), and the cold, dry air is drying-out skin just as fast.

With that said, here is a short primer on why our skin gets dry when fall and winter hits. Well, for one, colder air is

less dense than warm air. Therefore, it is unable to hold as much moisture or water molecules. Cold air – as in “Canadian fronts” – often brings with it wind that “whisks” away moisture and tends to dry-out tissue – causing oils and water vapor to evaporate more quickly.

An interesting observation for those who have swimming pools or jaccuzis…as with many folks we know, we cover our pool during the winter. We keep the pump and filter going, but cover the entire pool with a floating plastic sheet. I assumed this was to keep the leaves and debris out of the pool and the cleaner. Well this is in-part true, but I was informed by our local “pool expert” that the primary reason for the covers is to lessen evaporation. He told me the cold, windy weather would cause as much, if not more, evaporation than the heat and sun during the summer.

Well, that is what happens to our skin! So, what do what should you do? Here are a couple of ideas our staff and consultants suggest:

  1. Keep your skin moisturized. While this may seem an obvious first note, it is difficult for most folks to do. First, you start your day with a hot shower (which depletes oils and moisture), then you go out into the cold, dry air – often windy, too. So, by the time you get to work or school, you face is tight, and the skin on your hands hurt or are noticeably dry and flaking. The best thing to do is pat dry following a shower and immediately apply a light moisturizing lotion. We recommend those that contain ingredients like aloe, lanolin and/or emu oil. Generally an emu oil lotion is not greasy, is absorbed deeply into the skin, and lasts much or most of the day.
  2. Stay hydrated – Again, kind of an obvious issue, but for any of you who like to snow ski know, you can easily become dehydrated without knowing it because of the cooler temperatures.
  3. Use vitamin supplements – There is a bit of debate as to whether most folks need a daily supplement for their ski, nails or hair. Personally I think it is a good idea – and there is no evidence that it hurts – none that I know of, anyway. I believe this especially holds true during the winter. Our diets change, level of active outdoor activities decline, and our skin and hair are constantly exposed to a barrage of UV rays and cold air. Help keep your skin elastic and healthy by boosting up on some supplements.

You know your skin best. What you do during the winter generally has an impact as you enter the spring and summer. Care should be taken now to avoid wrinkles, dry patches, skin rash, and flaking. While careful care can be given to protect your skin, a little bit of prevention can help reduce the rate at which your skin ages and helps to keep your complexion smooth and soft.

Adding Services for Increased Spa Traffic

Posted on August 5, 2009 with No Comments

Increasing revenue and traffic for spas and MedSpas can be done several ways. One, open new locations, increase marketing efforts, or adding new services or products.

For many spas, opening new stores or locations may be part of a long-range growth plan, yet may not be suitable while operating in a down economy when spa treatments are viewed as either a luxury or discretionary.

Marketing efforts can be categorized as advertising or direct sales. Advertising can come in many forms. Direct mail, email campaigns, joint marketin efforts with related products or services, TV or radio. Many spas I have seen are flying banners outside their locations (local laws permitting), putting up billboards, and putting advertisements or discount inserts in papers, local news, press releases, or handing out discount or “specials” to customers and guests coming through the spa.

Increasing marketing efforts or expanding services is your best ROI when the economy has slowed. Massage Therapy, Botox or anti-wrinkle procedures, facials, and vein therapy can be supplemented with several ideas.

Another opportunity is making available additional services or products inside the store.

Selling in-expensive consumable products can help boost sales, improve traffic, and get consumers coming back. Spider vein creams can be excellent ancillary products following sclerotherapy or laser therapy. For pregnant women or those who have had children, a preventive or repairing stretch mark cream can help aid recovery and prevent scarring. And while injections can help smooth wrinkles and puff lips, anti wrinkle creams and serums help neck wrinkles, crow’s feet, and puffiness or dark circles under the eyes.

These products are designed to supplement and enhance procedures and improve weekly or monthly revenue. Choosing products that are expensive with luxurious packaging and “rock star” name brands may work against you. While they may certainly enhance the image of your spa (and to many that is important), high-priced skin care products have been shown to be great initial purchases, but lack the consumable “punch” needed for return purchases.

Tips for Smoother Skin – Part II

Posted on June 15, 2009 with No Comments

In the first post on smoother skin, we talked about the “top 3″ of proper care – cleansing, hydrating (moisturizing), and treating. Each are equally important to prevent enlarged pores, avoid rashes and keep your complexion soft and smooth.

Not to get to detailed, but we (the consuming public and manufacturers) can break down each of these areas and take a closer look at some things that work and some that don’t – and why.

There are a lot of skin care products for smoother skin – they come in a wide range of applications, mix of ingredients and a multitude of bases. The market has been segmented to the extreme as everyone looks for the miracle product that will make us look younger. Cream, abrasions, exfoliators and moisturizers all vie for the dollar you are going to spend.

But do they work?…do they help?…really? Well as a researcher, formulator and manufacturer, I would argue that it depends on the ingredients and what your goal is. I’m ot trying to talk in circles, but that’s what it boils down to.

For instance, moisturizers have been considered a regimen staple going back a long time. I remember my Mom applying a mask every night. The general purpose is to rehydrate the tissue. Even years ago, we recognized dryness and tightening and believed re-hydration was good. In fact, it was and is. The cool thing now is we have so many more effective ingredients than 40 years ago.

In the past 10 years, the most popular ingredient for moisturizers has become Hyaluronic Acid. It has found its was into wrinkle creams, solutions for skin rashes, burn treatments, and for chronic or acute drying. It is naturally found in our cells and becomes increasingly depleted as we age.

Many biologist and dermatologists believe it is the accumulated effects of free-radical damage that causes us to lose and produce less hyaluronic acid. If so, it certainly is a convenient response to why tissue becomes thin, dry, and wrinkled as we continue to age. So, to re-hydrate and moisturize look for creams or serums with Hyaluronic Acid. The effects are almost immediate.

Another couple of ingredients to loo for are Aloe and Emu Oil. Aloe most of us are familiar with. It makes a great base for a cream – especially serums. Its widely used in beauty and anti-aging products – working well for facial and wrinkle solutions, especially as an eye smoother.  One of the challenges older men and women have is neck wrinkles.  Particlularly sun damage and natural aging can show premature wrinkles on the neck giving the appearance of unsmooth skin.  If this is what you are experiencing, look for the best neck cream that can add moisture and reduce the sagging wrinkles at the base of your neck.

Emu oil is less well known, but has become a premier (and fairly expensive) ingredient for pitted acne scar treatment, burns, and stretchmarks. I’ve put up a few posts regarding Emu Oil, and at the risk of oft repeating myself, it is great. It has been used for years in Australia and New Zealand for wound healing. It deep moisturizes, and clinical studies have shown it is super-effective at both repairing and improving the complexion. A pretty good combo.

So, there are a few things you should look for when considering products for smoother skin. Each help soften, reduce enlarged pores, help retian moisture, and in some cases, help purify tissue to rid bacteria, oil and dirt.  Another idea you should consider is using skin tightening exercises for the stomach if you have been dealt the hand of flabby skin on the tummy.  These exercises will help give you smoother skin by improving and strengthening underlying muscle and connective tissue.  They will also help improve tissue flexibility, thus tightening the abdominal area.

Tips for Smoother Skin – Part I

Posted on April 14, 2009 with No Comments

I guess we have all been deluged with advice on keeping our complexion smooth and soft. But here are a couple of ideas, in fact reminders, to increase softness while reducing premature aging and wrinkles.

  1. Keep it Clean – Pores enlarge and become clogged when dirt and oil become trapped. Microscopic bacteria and
    tips for healthy skin

    Smooth complexion

    fungus can grow enlarging the pore’s size and compounding the problem. Wash your face daily with an herbal-based cleanser that is not harsh on the skin. Avoid makeup and cosmetics periodically. My wife generally takes a day or two every few weeks not wearing makeup and she says it works great.

  2. Moisturize – While this seems pretty obvious, moisturizers, especially at night, reclaim lost hydration. Some creams can irritate and are fairly ineffective at reducing dry skin. I’ll review several products in later posts.
  3. Treatment – If you have chronically dry skin or have had excessive sun exposure, products with Hyaluronic Acid work very well at providing “instant” moisture – fighting skin rashes, dryness, and problems like rosacea and acne.
  4. Exercise – While exercise in general is a given, toning specific parts of you body can help greatly with overall skin tone and care.  Consider and exercise for the neck that builds muscle and improves your flexibility. A diligent regimen will make you feel better, reduce injury and pain and will help guard against wrinkled or sagging skin on the neck.

Pretty basic, uh? The trick is consistency and adjusting your regimen to your skin type and any specific problems you might have. I’ll make a few recommendations for enlarged pores and wrinkles later.