RECIPE FOR HEALTHY GLOWING SKIN
I love my skin; it gives me identity, occasional anxiety, and tells the story of my life. Skin wasn't made to be perfect, just like us it's full of imperfections and unique qualities that make it beautiful. We have a choice to protect or neglect it and each decision comes with visible consequences. I'd like to say I made all the right choices to protect and invest in my skins health, but here I am wishing I wore more sunscreen while I look at a drawer of products that drain my savings account. Thankfully, it's never too late and I've finally found a skincare routine of success!
Two peoples skin can't be the same, but they can both be their brightest and healthiest! So, keep reading for my routine of healthy habits, services, and products that enhance the beautiful glowing skin you already have.
THE RECIPE: CORRECT | PROTECT | HEALTHY HABITS | PRODUCTS
I wish I had the maturity to think ahead when I was younger and consider the skin of my future 20, 30 or 50 year old self. I'm sure just like many of you, nothing was more important than soaking up those beautiful rays of sunshine. To the naked eye, my skin looks normal for a 20 something woman (hopefully). But, I know what it has endured, so I know what's lying just below the surface and slowly making its way up to say, "I told you so."
That's why I have this corrective step. I'll never see the supple, smooth, healthy skin I want if I don't take the steps to correct the damage of my younger years. So, I'm kicking up my routine and working toward a clean slate, where my products will be more efficient and my skin will have the healthy youthful glow it deserves.
WHAT IS A CHEMICAL PEEL
A chemical peel is a chemical microdermabrasion. It goes deeper that a mechanical or manual exfoliant to fight acne, aging, and hyper-pigmentation (sun spots). A lot of my skin concerns (mainly fine lines and hyper-pigmentation) start a few layers down, a chemical peel breaks away the dead skin cells on the surface stimulates collagen production and leaves you with brighter, more even, and healthier skin.
I did a package of three with Lapiel Laser Center, one ever 4 – 6 weeks. Each peel is corrective so the benefits don't go away, ever, unless you damage it again. Personally, I'm obsessed!
MY CORRECTIVE PROCESS: CHEMICAL PEELS AT LAPIEL LASER CENTER
I did some digging and searching before finding a wonderful Medical Spa here in Chicago, Lapiel Laser Center. Simply said, they're amazing! They kicked my hesitations in the butt, talked me through the process; what I wanted and more importantly didn't want and decided on the best treatment plan for my skin goals. After chatting with Julie (one of the wonderful aestheticians) we decided to go with a package of chemical peels. Boy do they work wonders! Chemical peels sound much more intense than they are, I went on vacation the day after two of mine, so there was no recovery time or need to hide from the public eye. Just glowing, brighter, and more even skin...starting the very next day!
NO MAKEUP, PRODUCTS, OR EDITING ON MY SKIN IN THE PICTURES BELOW! SO CRAZY, I’M ADDICTED…
PEEL #1 : MANDELIC
Julie started me off with the gentlest peel called the Mandelic.
Reduces pore size
Improves skin tone and texture
I left lathered in oil and excited to see some results. The next morning I was so surprised and excited, my skin was smoother, more even and just looked healthier. Day 3 and 4 were accompanied with minimal peeling, basically dry skin around my nose, but not enough that anyone would notice but me.
PEEL #2 JESSNER
Round 2! I decided I wanted to kick it up a notch, with Julie's approval of course (she would never let me do anything that wouldn't benefit my skins health) we did the next level up, the Jessner Peel.
Visibly reduces hyper-pigmentation
Improves skin tone and texture
After this peel I got on a plane to Switzerland, terrified that with the 8% humidity planes have, all the moisture would be sucked out of my skin and I'd show up as a dry and peeling mess. NOT THE CASE! I drank tons of water and used the products below LITERALLY NO PEELING AT ALL, only a softer, brighter, more even and dewy complexion. WIN!
PEEL #3 JESSNER
After the success of round 2's Jessner, you can imagine my excitement for another round! I considered jumping up to the highest level, Julie talked me through it and knowing I was headed to the beach the next day, recommended I stick with the Jessner. The next level up is called TCA LP. This is the most intense with the greatest results but a little down time.
Decreases moderate to sever hyper-pigmentation
Reduce visible aging: fine and deep wrinkles
Improves texture and skin tone
This one would be good for the winter when you're inside (out of sunlight) and have a few days at home.
After my 3rd peel I was amazed at how great my skin looked, I had less and lighter freckles, little spots from sun damage were gone, dullness vanished and bright healthy skin was everywhere! My skin is so much brighter, even and dewy I would recommend these peels to everyone, even those with sensitive skin.
I can't say enough abut the team at Lapiel, they are so kind and have your skins best interest in mind, all the time. Each aesthetician and nurse has years of practice and Ariana or Courtney will be there to greet you and ask about your week when you walk in. As if getting a facial isn't already fun, Lapiel makes the experience so comfortable and enjoyable because you know you're getting the best possible service. If you're in the area, give them a call! Maybe I'll see you there!
WHY I DIDN'T PEEL
The more hydrated your skin is they less you will peel. I drank tons of water from my trusty canteen (I carry it everywhere!) and applied hydrating toner and facial oil under my normal products. Also stay out of the sun and it all worked like a charm!
This is probably the most important way to influence your skins health and appearance. The pollutants in the air and harsh rays of our beloved sun take a serious toll on our skin. It was always hard for me to take serious because you can't see the effects...yet. I have to remind myself that the tan fades but the wrinkle and spots settle in for years to come.
SUNSCREEN FUN FACTS
20 SPF protects for 2 hours
30 SPF protects for 3 hours
50 SPF only protects 5% more than 30 SPF, and still only lasts 3 hours...
Your lips need protection too
Lapiel introduced me to a wonderful little stick of magic, Sun Defense Mineral powder! This fabulous fella is a lightweight powder that packs the power of 30 SPF. The last thing I want to do two hours after finishing make-up is smear it all together with sunscreen. This powder is genius and the brush is already attached; they thought of everything! It gives me the touch up my makeup wants and the protection my skin needs. A double dose of wonderful, oh and it's organic!
Our actions reflect our image.
Your skin will eventually reveal how you treat it; what you put in your body, on your skin, and expose yourself to will determine what you see in the mirror. I have a little collection of healthy habits that not only make me feel great but also excited when I see their effects push through to my skin.
HEALTHY HABITS FOR HAPPY SKIN
WIPE AWAY THE DIRT OF THE DAY
No matter how drowsy you are, make that trip to the sink and wash away all that dirt, grease, and product. Sleeping with makeup and dirt on your face ages you 7 days, clogs your pores, and keeps your skin from the self-care rebooting it does while you sleep (this is when products are most effective.)
BEAT THE BUILD UP
Old and dead skin cells build up leaving a dull, rough, and lifeless complexion. Exfoliating regularly (2-3 times a week) removes the build up, keeping your pores clean and your skin healthy and radiant. You also absorb product much better without barriers of dead skin cells that slow the aging process. Woop Woop!
IS YOUR GLASS HALF FULL?
Get your daily dose of water! That's 8-11 cups. If you fancy a cup of coffee or glass of wine like me, we need a few extra cups each day. Sip on those at a 1:1 ratio with water. Our skin is a living organ and the last to take nutrients; our kidneys and other vital organs soak up all the good stuff first. So, if there's nothing left, your skin is left out to dry, literally!
GIRLS JUST WANNA HAVE SUN
But you shouldn't.... I carry around a touchup stick in my purse to reapply throughout the day! Sunburns are so damaging and you can never totally come back from that damage, so prevent it whenever you can.
BETTER SKIN WITH COLLAGEN
Sometimes it's not what we put on our skin but in our bodies. Collagen and elastin is what keeps our skin nice and firm. Over the years we produce less and less and adding it to your diet helps with hydration, glow, and structure. Vital ProteinsBeauty Water and Collagen Peptide is amazing! I mix it into my water, coffee, lattes, and smoothies and reap the benefits of healthier skin, hair, nails, joints, and much more.
* I've been using the Lavender Lemon Beauty Water and Collagen Peptides. The Beauty water is great mixed into my hot lemon water in the morning; tastes a little like a cider, yum!
This is where we add all those eye-catching nutrients, dousing our skin in everything it needs to be bright, even and healthy. I've been testing products for months (technically years) and compiled a collection of my favorite natural, cruelty-free and overall effective products that give my skin a beautiful and healthy glow!
My skin: combination/dry and occasionally sensitive.
TOTALLY OBSESSED WITH TULA
A few months ago I ordered their Discovery Kit (travel sized face wash, eye cream, illuminating serum and moisturizer for $52) to try out the products. Well, I'M SOLD! I've been using the products for months and my skin has literally never looked better. Even before my peels, these products amazed me. My skin is healthy, smooth, hydrated, and actually luminous all on its own. The moment I washed my face and realized my skin looked better after I took off my make-up I knew TULA was a game changer!
I'm a huge advocate for oil cleansers, my skin is most sensitive to cleansers (I have no idea why) but the oil washes away all the dirt and makeup without stripping my skin and drying it out. The new TULA line, Kefir, has an oil cleanser that I started using earlier this month. It's wonderful, my toner shows no makeup or dirt residue after I use it, and my face feels so happy and clean.
It took me a while to find a toner I liked, some of them I felt were kind of pointless. I ordered this Pro-Glycolic Acid Toner not expecting it to be much different. I was wrong! My skin had been breaking out from all the traveling and after 3 days with toner, I was back and my skin was crystal clear. I almost always have a little problem spot but this toner has brought my skin so much clarity! Glycolic acid shrinks and cleans out your pores balancing the PH of your skin and keeping everything in order. Love it!
I have two, but the TULA Illuminating serum is my first love. I can't say enough about it, but it's a product I'm not sure I could live without. I credit this serum for the extra glow my skin took on. It slowly chipped away at the dullness my skin was harboring and unlocked this smooth, bright, and happy complexion my skin has never seen.
The second is the Kefir Hydrating pressed serum; the texture is like coconut oil almost and melts right into your skin as you rub it on. I love using this one at night for some extra hydration while I sleep. It's great for daytime too though.
The obsession continues... the TULA Day and Night Cream is an all-time favorite! With naturally dryer and slightly dehydrated skin (too much coffee over here!) I need a moisturizer that packs a kick. I've used it routinely for months, and my skin is supple, smooth, and luminous. It's light and spreadable so it lasts a long time too!
Sometimes I feel like my eyes are hopeless. No mater how much I sleep or water I get, I have dark circles and tired eyes. Since I started using the TULA Multi-spectrum Eye Renewal Serum, to no surprise, my eyes are brighter and firmer than ever. I love the metal application tip, it helps me wake and de-puff my drowsy eyes.
Masks are good for my skin and overall wellness. Each time I settle into a face mask, whether for 5 or 20 minutes, I feel like I'm getting a little me time (even if I'm multitasking) It's those extra little steps of self-care that take your health to the next level. I'm about to order my second Exfoliating Treatment Mask from TULA. It detoxifies and pulls impurities from your skin, has vitamin E, antioxidants, turmeric root for inflammation, probiotics, and retinol. Basically everything! Helping with anti-aging, inflammation, breakouts, and balance this blue beauty is my one stop shop!
Lapiel Laser Center introduced me to this organic and cruelty free brand. The products are super effective, all natural and smell fantastic!
Once you try this Stone Crop Oxygenating Fizzofoliant, you'll love it! This green powder turns into a fizzy and fine exfoliant once you mix it with water. You can feel all the teeny tiny grains sweeping away the dull skin from your face for a smoother, brighter, and more even skin tone. It's gentle so you can use it up to 2-4 times a week too!
If you like soft lips and lemon chills, this is for you! After my peels at Lapiel, they put a nice layer of Rosehip & Lemongrass Lip Balm with SPF 15on my lips. After the second round I realized I needed it. This lip balm has NO POTROLEUM (in most lip balms, an oil byproduct keeps moisture from you lips, ironically) so it's drenching your lips in luscious hydration the whole time! Yes, it smells just like a lemon chill, and the citrus is lovely touch!
I talked about this handy product in the â€œProtectâ€ portion. Basically, it's 30 SPF to go in touchup form! Your sunscreen only lasts a few hours so I keep this guy in my purse and break him out throughout the day to keep my skin protected and make-up looking fresh!
Get the translucent one!
These are my skin saviors when I need an extra dose of hydration, especially after a peel or have a breakout. I turn to them and they always come through!
Oils are lipophilic, which means they soak deep into your skin. Full of antioxidants and nutrients, they protect your skin from pollutants, aging, and dehydration. Music to my ears! Herbivore Botanicals is another favorite organic brand! I love their travel-sized Pheonix oil, great for planes and purses and it rolls right on so you never use too much. I wear this after my toner and before my serum (you could use it as your moisturizer too) when I want some extra hydration; my skin soaks it right up! They carry 3 kinds for various skin types. This is the Phoenix Oil.
* If you do chemical peels this is a GREAT product to avoid peeling.
HYDRATING FACE MIST
This Coconut Water Hydrating Face mist is packed with antioxidants and acids that hydrate, exfoliate, brighten, and fight inflammation. I like to spray this on after my TULA toner and before the oil and serum. I always bring it along when I'm traveling too. Whenever my skin is feeling tired and dull, it's so refreshing! Herbivore has a great collection of products and I doubt you'll be disappointed with any of them!