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Corneobiology refers to a broad range of experimental studies focused on the anatomy, physiology and biology of the stratum corneum, focused specifically on the horny layer that is very unique to human beings.1 This science encompasses numerous studies that deal with immunology, endocrinology, neurobiology and psychology. Studies as early as 1964 showed that the horny layer membrane was a coherent tissue of cornified cells (corneocytes)…
Stem cells are special cells in the body that provide a continuous source of new cells. Stem cells have two unique features: they are unspecialized which retains the ability of self-renewal by cell division, almost without limit. They also have the ability to become specific cells of a particular tissue or organ. For example, in the intestine, they constantly replace worn out cells that line…
As we all strive for health and longevity, there is a growing interest towards the use of botanical-based skin care products. Plants historically hold the wisdom of the earth and can unite a generation who suffers from nature deficit disorder, to be a little closer to that which is unaffected by commercialism.In the 1950s, the introduction of personal care products came on the scene bringing…
The inner-outer body connection is well documented and has been for years. The physical, emotional and psychological condition of the human body has the ability to influence not only the inner functioning of the body, but its outer appearance as well. Nutrients, eating habits and food categories all have an influence on the condition of the skin; and as an aesthetician it is critical that…
Ayurveda (pronounced: are-you-vay-da) is a Sanskrit term. "Ayur" comes from the noun "ayus" meaning life, living or longevity. "Veda" comes from the verb "vid" meaning to know about, to study or science. Thus Ayurveda is commonly translated as science of life or study of longevity. It is the knowledge of what it takes to live a balanced, healthy and inspiring life. Ayurveda originated in the…
Friday, 01 June 2012 12:14

The Science of Prevention

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Skin cancer is the most common cancer in the U.S. with more than two million Americans diagnosed annually. Basal cell carcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma make up the majority of these cases. The third type, melanoma, arises from pigment producing cells called melanocytes. The ability to spread widely to other parts of the body is a unique characteristic of melanoma that the other skin cancers…
When we enter the spa for relaxation and that all important get away from the rush of everyday life we have certain expectations. There is an ambiance that is created within the spa, the soft, relaxing music, the pleasing to the eye décor, and the cozy treatment rooms. There is however the ‘Spa smell’. The luxurious, gentle smell of essential oils that lulls you into…
While chirality is actually nothing new to science and the pharmaceutical drug industry, it is a relatively new concept to skin care. But what do chirally correct ingredients offer the skin and can they provide real benefits otherwise unmatched? In 1847, renowned French chemist Louis Pasteur first discovered the concept of chirality as a graduate student while studying two acids in wine. He observed that…
Stress, that cliché word meaning 'totally overwhelmed,' is now acknowledged as a proven threat to health. "Over 50 percent of deaths in the United States can be attributed to behavioral and social factors [stress]," says psychologist Oakley Ray, Ph.D., of the Departments of Psychology and Psychiatry at Vanderbilt University in a study. This and other research implicates stress in causing disease and degradation at the…
Scientists and researchers have come a long way in their efforts to understand the properties and benefits of supplements in skin care. The use of vitamins and other nutrients to hydrate, normalize, protect, heal, condition and beautify the skin appears to be the wave of both the present and the future. Clearly, the internal use of vitamins is one of the most powerful weapons in…
Once upon a time in a far away universe there was a popular principle called "body wisdom – intuition", which meant that our bodies would tell us which foods we needed- as long as we learn to listen. When we were truly present with our intuition and wisdom principle, when our bodies are deficient in a particular nutrient, our desire to eat foods containing that…
For many people in the U.S., nutritional supplements are simply a natural alternative to synthetic drugs, used in similar ways for similar conditions. But, for those who have used nutritional supplements for years and are familiar with the research on supplements and their use worldwide, nutritional supplements are an integral part of not just addressing health problems, but of creating optimal health and well-being, even…
In August of 1979, I was at the end of my rope. I was 38 years old, but I felt helpless and hopeless. More than three years of rapidly declining health had left me nearly disabled by pain, fatigue, and depression; all of which were caused by a disease syndrome that no doctor could properly diagnose. The best that they could offer me was the…
HOLISTIC: The word implies healing and wellness. It is a word that we are seeing more and more in the spa industry. The word actually does refer to healing. When a person is out of "balance", they are literally feeling "torn apart" by their perceptions of the pressures of their life. Because of this, their body manufactures different kinds of chemicals that aid in their…
There is no denying that Mother Nature has provided us a bounty of exquisite ingredients that have many supportive benefits for our skin’s health. But what happens to those ingredients when science enters the picture? Science and nature may be at opposite ends of the spectrum, but when the two merge, how does that impact the effectiveness of a skin care formulation? It all comes…
Researchers at the University of Leeds, funded by Cancer Research UK, suggest that people with very pale skin may be unable to spend enough time in the sun to make the amount of vitamin D the body needs - while also avoiding sunburn. The study, published in Cancer Causes and Control*, suggested that melanoma patients may need vitamin D supplements as well. But researchers also noted…
Tuesday, 17 January 2012 11:43

Managing Stress Can Help People Improve Their Skin Conditions

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As anyone with a chronic, inflammatory skin condition, such as psoriasis, rosacea or acne, knows, dealing with unpredictable flares can cause considerable stress and have a negative effect on a person's overall well-being. Now, an ever-growing body of research shows how the complex link between the skin and the psyche — including the role of stress — affects skin conditions. At the American Academy of…
IFT Member Claudia Fajardo-Lira, PhD, Professor of Food Science and Nutrition at California State University-Northridge, explains the facts about antioxidants: Q: What are antioxidants? A: Antioxidants play an important role in overall health. They are natural compounds found in some foods that help neutralize free radicals in our bodies. Free radicals are substances that occur naturally in our bodies but attack the fats, protein and…
Reiki, a Japanese word that means universal life force, is the practice of using the hands system to balance the body. Based on Chinese Medicine and the philosophies of Buddhism and Taoism, Reiki is considered an effective means for alleviating pain, depression and anxiety. Reiki draws from the idea that spiritual energy flows through a Reiki provider who can transfer energy to a patient and…
Understanding hormones and their effect on the skin, from the teenage years to perimenopause and menopause, is challenging for many skin care specialists. Journeying through the roller coaster with many clients can be rough sailing. Understanding the prominent hormones in the body is essential in order to correctly diagnose, treat and prevent hormone related skin conditions. Estrogen and progesterone are the main partners in this…
They are the chemical messengers that control nearly every aspect of the human body. Without hormones, growth and development, metabolism, reproduction, mood control, digestion and other necessary functions would not be possible.Small changes in hormones can cause big changes within the bodyand the skin. Hormonally induced skin conditions, like acne and melasmacan be frustrating, asfluctuations in hormones are unpredictable and often not easily detected, even…

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