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Skin care ingredients are formulated with specific delivery systems to ensure they reach the targeted skin level for which they were designed to act. If an ingredient is penetrated deeper into the skin, when, in fact, it is meant to remove the dead cells from the stratum corneum, an enzyme for example, it would not be able to carry out its intended function. If that…
With the many alternative skin care products on the market, waterless skin care products are finally making their debut within western societies. Popular in Korean skin care routines, waterless skin care gives consumers the option to use products that leave out the 70% of water found in most lotions and creams. These waterless skin care products allow for the remaining 30% to become the main…
Retinoids, topical vitamin A, are widely considered the undisputed champions of skin care. This superhero ingredient has been clinically proven to banish wrinkles, diminish hyperpigmentation and improve skin texture, and is one of the most effective ingredients for treating acne. Other noteworthy benefits include epidermal thickening and increase of glycosaminoglycans (GAGs). The importance of retinol was discovered in the early 1900s, and subsequent research showed…
Have you heard of corneotherapy? If not, be prepared to hear and see it popping up in the skin care industry more and more, especially on the holistic side of the industry, as skin care professionals are looking to tackle the underlying cause (immune response) by treating the outer layer of skin. Corneotherapy is a newer field of skin treatment within the fields of dermatology…
Pigmentation is a term that refers to the color of the skin. The amount of melanin in the skin determines its pigment and the skin cells create melanin. Certain skin disorders can change the pigmentation of the skin and it can be difficult to reverse the effects, depending on how a person has experienced hyperpigmentation. When the skin is not regularly moisturized or has been…
Globally, ingredients to brighten and lighten the skin are highly sought after by clients. Every skin type can experience a variety of different types of pigmentation including brown spots, discoloration, redness, or pigmented areas. Pigmentation can be caused by several issues, like sun damage, medications, cosmetic intolerance syndrome, hormonal issues, and more. The skin care professional should do a thorough intake form to determine the…
We’re conscious about what we put in our bodies. We’re conscious about the environment. We want to know that the food we eat is being produced in a sustainable and humane way. Sometimes, just seeing an “organic” or “natural” label puts us at ease. But, when it comes to skin care products, is “all-natural” necessarily better? For many consumers, the misconception is that this label…
The phenomenon of aging and the concept of expanding the human lifespan has thrived over the last several decades. The quest for a more youthful appearance has infiltrated research for several generations. The primary causes for accelerated cellular damage or aging were mostly found to be a result of reactive oxidative stress, over-exposure to ultraviolet rays, environmental factors (pollution and toxins), and illnesses. However, further…
As Instagram eyebrows and microblading have seen a surge in popularity in recent years, more and more consumers are looking for ways to obtain fuller eyebrows, including prescriptions and over-the-counter solutions. While perfect eyebrows cannot be achieved overnight (unless you’re counting on makeup), there are ways to achieve them, including proper grooming, a balanced diet, and results-driven topical care. I spoke to Austin-based, oculoplastic and…

Skin Care: Style Versus Substance

Written by Dr. Elliot Hirsch
Skin care is a multi-billion dollar industry in the United States – take a quick walk through any pharmacy or name brand store and see aisles and aisles of flashy skin care lines promising more youthful, moisturized, happier skin. And, with sophisticated-sounding formulas and all-natural options in shiny packages, who needs medical-grade skin care anyway? Your clients do. Over-the-counter products (even those labeled as clinical…
Cleansers and toners are found as effective, all-in-one products, and today’s ability to refine the efficacy of more advanced compositions validates their long-standing purpose to clean and balance skin. While the existence of cleansers and toners as a duo is possible due to the purity of this generation’s skin care formulations and the advanced technology in today’s manufacturing capabilities, a European favorite, micellar water, has…
Did you know that acne scars are a huge problem for many clients? The scars that acne leaves behind can have lasting social and psychological effects, stretching beyond the teenage years into adulthood. In a recent study of 1,972 acne patients, over 40% suffered some degree of scarring, with the highest risk factors being acne severity and delayed treatment.1 Moreover, most patients are unaware of…
Milia are benign, superficial, keratin-filled white or yellowish cysts measuring one millimeter to three millimeters in size. These can be just a single cyst (milium) or, more likely, appear in clusters (milia). They are thought to occur when dead skin is lodged in small pockets just below the skin’s surface and not within a pore. Since milia are a cyst, they generally do not become…
The aesthetics and spa industry has been growing steadily and is projected to continue its growth at a faster than average rate over the next seven years, according to the United States Department of Labor.1 This increase is seen across spa modalities, as well, both on the medical and holistic ends of the spectrum, and everything in between. With changes in the industry due to…
Exfoliation is a hot topic across treatment rooms, social media, beauty bloggers, and magazine articles. But clients are getting mixed messages about what exfoliants to use and the correct way to exfoliate. The job of the aesthetician is to educate clients about the correct way to use exfoliants to assist the skin without breaking down the delicate barrier. The goal of this article is to…
Vitamin A is essential for healthy growth and development, good vision, a strong immune system, and a healthy skin barrier. In the 1960s, dermatologists commonly used vitamin A for treating acne until it was later identified as an effective vitamin for the repair of aging skin.1 It is currently one of the most popular ingredients used in skin care formulations for skin revision. However, little…

The Power of Plasma Lifting

Written by Elaine Sterling, CEO, owner, and founder of The Elaine Sterling Institute
Plasma lifting pens harness the power of plasma, a fourth state matter (solid, liquid, gas, and plasma) to help reduce or eliminate certain skin conditions and concerns, such as wrinkles, fine lines, skin tags, and so forth. Through the process of ionization, plasma lifting treatments are able to create an electric charge or arc. This arc is focused on a target on the surface of…
Not all skin is the same and not every product is universal. Aestheticians see clients with a variety of concerns, including acne, hyperpigmentation, dryness, wrinkles, and sensitivity. Which exfoliators are a must in the treatment room and how can professionals determine the most effective treatment protocol for clients? The client should always come out of the treatment room looking much better than when they entered,…
As summer comes to an end, it is the season to correct some of the skin damage left behind from over exposure to the sun. Even clients who diligently and meticulously lather sunscreen from head to toe may still end up with skin damage, including sunburn, sun spots, dehydrated skin, and more noticeable fine lines at the end of summer. Now, for clients in their…
Before a skin care professional can select the appropriate treatment regimens for their clients, they must have a basic understanding of electricity. Electrotherapy is the term for electricity used during skin care treatments. Many aesthetic treatments incorporate the use of electricity, as common as a basic facial using steam. The benefits desired and results achieved are dependent upon the appropriate use of electricity set to…
SNOW MUSHROOMS Chinese medicine has known the benefits of consuming snow mushrooms internally for thousands of years, but their benefits are just beginning to be revealed in topical skin care. This miracle mushroom is the new hyaluronic acid, holding more than 500 times its weight in water. What makes this even better than traditional, mammal-based hyaluronic acid is its vegan sourcing and smaller molecular structure,…
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