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Saturday, 14 May 2011 14:04

The Aesthetics Industry Emerges Into Holistic Prevention

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The aesthetics industry, for years, has predominantly marketed the concept of "anti-aging" in terms of service and retail dollars. Anti-aging has become a central component in skin care, as we continually attempt to deliver the most effective treatments to our clients. We attempt to erase their chosen past lifestyles from their skin with, sometimes, unrealistic expectations, and usually in direct competition with medical doctors. The future of aesthetics is in treating the skin holistically, as the holistic practitioners we truly are. "Holistic" is a multi-faceted concept where the skin is seen as a whole.

The focus is skin health, skin detoxification, and skin prevention in accordance to a healthy lifestyle.
Conversely, medical doctors will diagnose and treat a condition or disease once it is present. A medical doctor will quickly address hyperpigmentation with a deep level peel that may be toxic or traumatic to the skin with significant downtime and possible complications. This direction in skin care never fully targets the condition at its core. It only addresses the symptoms, which is the hyperpigmentation. However, the body, as a whole, could be in an inflammatory state; stress and adrenal fatigue can cause hormonal disruption that is presenting itself as unsightly brown blotches on the skin's surface. 

What About Diet?
An inflammatory bodily state could also be a reflection of diet. So, as presented in example, you can try to erase the symptoms, but the root of one's health and lifestyle is always communicating to you, the skin practitioner.

What is the Missing Link?
Beneficially, as aesthetic skin professionals, it is important to partner with a medical doctor to refer clients who are in a diseased state, yet for the common skin conditions we see daily, it is important to partner with your fellow holistic practitioners to assist with your treatment program. In turn, holistic practitioners need to be acquainted on what you can do to assist their clients as well, which is the support of the liver, kidneys, and colon through skin detoxification.
Skin detoxification is a big phrase in this day and age of extreme exposed toxicity. We are exposed daily to numerous toxins; they are present in the foods we eat, the uncontrollable environment, household cleaning products, hygienic products, pharmaceuticals, heavy metals, and harsh skin care products, not to mention all the emotional toxicity we create from various mental stresses. There are steps we can take to control toxic overload, for example, choosing organic foods and products. However, anti-aging and holistic doctors are now recommending the constant purging of toxins from the body as part of a wellness lifestyle. Michael Galitzer, M.D. is a nationally recognized expert in anti-aging medicine who preaches the importance of toxic drainage. "The lymphatic system needs to be stimulated." Galitzer says. "This is all about getting your drainage systems working efficiently. If the liver, kidneys, and lymph systems aren't working, you can't pull toxins out of the tissues."

Skin detoxification can benefit your client in several ways:

  • Expels toxins from the body by speeding up the metabolic process that occurs on a cellular level.
  • The skin, acting as a drainage outlet, takes stress off the liver, kidneys, and colon.
  • The stimulation of blood and lymphatic flow stimulates your immune system which keeps the body healthy and strong.
  • Skin detoxification enhances other detox-ification programs.
  • Skin detoxification improves the skin by removing deep impurities, dead skin cells, and assisting with optimal cellular oxygenation, leaving the skin fresh, glowing, andbeautiful.
  • Increased circulation will draw nutrients to the skin's surface and assist the skin in a self-cleansing process.
  • Skin detoxification improves skin tone, elasticity, and texture; also, relieves acne, eczema, psoriasis, and assists in wound healing.
  • Skin detoxification improves the appearance of cellulite by expelling toxins and water retention from adipose tissue by accelerating the metabolic process that occurs on a cellular level.

Let us review the spa/skin treatments that will support your client's wellness lifestyle and assist with continual toxic drainage. Body wraps are extremely supportive to skin detoxification. They stimulate cellular metabolism and blood and lymph circulation. The lymphatic system contains toxins that need to be eliminated, while the stimulation of blood circulation aids in the oxygenation of cells and enhanced nutritional supply to the skin's surface. The main actives in a body wrap that promote this process are: Seaweed, algae, mud, clay, and herbs; such as, burdock, stinging nettle, and sage. Capsaicin is also known for blood and lymphatic flow, which increases the metabolic process within the skin. Additionally, body wraps promote skin perspiration which further assists in the body ridding itself from toxic overload. It is a universal protocol to follow up with a shower after the body wrap has processed on the skin. Instruct your clients to reap the benefits of a contrast shower using hot and cold water. Initially, for rinsing, start with warm/hot water to wash away the body mask, dead skin cells, and toxic perspiration, while aiding the body in extended relaxation of the internal muscles. Then, turn the shower to cold to gently energize circulation and lymphatic stimulation, as well as invigorate the mind. Your client will be revived from head to toe, and ready for his/her moisture treatment and/or massage.
In conjunction with regular, scheduled body wraps, skin brushing is another component to body and skin health, and should be recommended as an at-home regimen, and done on a daily basis, as a morning ritual, to energize the body. Please note that the benefits of daily skin brushing is further enhanced by implementing, simultaneously, with contrast (hot/cold) showers. Skin brushing, similarly, serves to stimulate the circulatory and lymphatic systems. With regular skin brushing, it aids the lymphatic system in eliminating the toxins into the blood stream, which is then processed in the kidneys and liver, and finally, removed from the urinary tract and colon. Likewise, skin brushing exfoliates the skin's surface dead skin cells. When the dead skin cells are removed from the surface, it unclogs the pores to aid the skin in functioning as a detox organ.
These holistic skin/spa treatments will enhance your client's wellness lifestyle and will additionally support other forms of detoxification treatments recommended by holistic practitioners. Bodily systems all work in harmony and support each other. For example, Stacey Abbe, a licensed colon therapist who specializes in colon irrigation, states, "If the colon is blocked, the other organs won't be able to flow properly, including your skin. This blockage can show up in the form of acne or skin rashes, which shows a significant amount of Candida (bad bacteria) in the gut. This bacteria can be eliminated through the administration of a colonic." Colon irrigation, a.k.a., colon hydrotherapy, or colonic, is " the gentle infusion of freshly purified warm (102 degrees) water into the large intestine using the Gravity Flow Method to cleanse the colon of poisons, gas, and accumulated fecal matter." Unlike an enema, which is the retention of water in the colon, a colonic is the continual flow of water through the colon.

How Will Colonics Further Assist Your Skin Care Treatments?
Colonics will enhance and strengthen the immune system which will naturally strengthen the skin's immune function resulting in less breakouts and less hypersensitivity. Colonics enhance the absorption of nutrients from your food into the body, therefore, expect more results from your skin treatments! Last, but certainly not least, colonics will cleanse the craving of addictions; this could be alcohol, drugs, and yes, coffee! Advising aestheticians are always reminding their clients to drink more water, and less coffee, due to the de-hydration effects of caffeine. However, this is usually more easily said than done. Drinking coffee is very addictive, and once you start with colonic treatments, you can cleanse that craving.
Yoga is another powerful complement to aesthetics. Darcy Providente, co-owner of Chagrin Yoga in Chagrin Falls, Ohio, states the beautifying benefits of regular yoga practice. "You sweat by using muscle, which generates muscle activity that creates lactic acid. Through perspiration, the body sweats the lactic acid through the pores of the skin, naturally exfoliating dead skin cells to the surface." Your clients would certainly benefit receiving a facial treatment after such beneficial exercise! To support detoxification, Providente created the Sage Room at her yoga studio where her clients can go to "sweat it out;" a great outlet for stress release, self renewal, and of course, excreting toxins from the body. Providente explains that sage is a symbol for purification and rejuvenation, thus a perfect name for a room where perspiration is intended.

Which Form of Yoga is Recommend for Detoxification?
The recommended yoga practice is Power Vinyasa Flow, which is Sanskrit. Power Vinyasa Flow incorporates poses that require intense twisting of the body. "These twisting postures, called ‘matsyendrasana,’ stimulate your endocrine system and immune system, which creates balance, positivity, and peace," said Providente. As skin specialists, we understand the power of the endocrine system, as well as the immune system. Stimulation of the endocrine system reduces stress levels by releasing endorphins into the blood stream. The release of endorphins promotes relaxation, and hence reduces the level of cortisol in the bloodstream. Elevated cortisol levels have been linked to accelerated aging that surfaces on the skin in the form of wrinkles, skin laxicity, and hyperpigmentation. Stimulating the immune system, as mentioned in previous text, moves toxins into the bloodstream, to be processed in the kidneys and liver, hence strengthening the body as a whole and this gives our skin an advantage in luminosity and overall health. Aforementioned, skin perspiration is reinforced in yoga practice, therefore, enhancing and reinforcing the effects of body treatments in the form of wraps and massage, as well as facial treatments.
The liver is the largest internal organ in the body that plays a vital role in detoxification. It is extremely important to support the liver by limiting your exposure to toxins. Many holistic practitioners recommend a yearly liver detox, usually performed in the spring months, and supported with homeopathic tinctures, herbs, foods, fluids, and fasting. Moreover, hyperthermia
therapy, a.k.a.: infrared sauna therapy, and/or "fever" therapy, is also highly recommended for continual support of the liver in unburdening the body of estrogen-disrupters, which we are exposed to on a daily basis in the form of PCB's, dioxins, phthalates, and heavy metals. These toxic chemicals get stored in your fat cells after ingestion. Research shows that hyperthermia therapy expels these toxins out of the fat cells and through the skin in the form of perspiration. Infrared saunas are gaining recognition and popularity in wellness clinics and spas nationwide. As further stated, all forms of therapy and detoxification work harmoniously, and it is recommended to combine the aforementioned treatments and exercise with hyperthermia therapy to assist in your health and wellness lifestyle.

How Will You Present Yourself as a Holistic Practitioner?
The education given to your clients is always a main focus in portraying yourself as a holistic practitioner. Spend time with your clients in educating the benefits of the treatments that you are providing to them. It is interesting how, after a treatment so pertinent as a body detox wrap, the aesthetic practitioner, or massage therapist, rarely discuss what is occurring in the body. It is so fantastic that it needs to be shared with clients! Additionally, partnering with holistic practitioners, and recommending them to your clients to further their treatment goals, presents you with credibility and knowledge. Your clients will appreciate the referral to progressively enhance their wellness goals. Partner with therapists such as: colon therapists, yoga practitioners, chiropractors, anti-aging doctors, naturopathic doctors, homeopathic doctors, and spiritual healers.
Clients also need to be aware of the after-effects of detoxification treatments. For example, the client could experience fatigue, headache, muscle aches, and slight nausea, or a feeling of general imbalance. It is very important to clearly communicate post-care to your client. Water is imperative, as it flushes toxins out of the system, as well as rehydrates the skin and tissues. Diet should be supportive to detoxification by consuming raw foods, specifically apples, celery, lemon, beets, broccoli, garlic, and onions. These foods support detoxification and immune function. As also previously stated, your client will be instructed to initiate daily skin brushing and contrast showers to continue the support of lymphatic drainage and the expulsion of toxins from the body.
There is a definite reason why these holistic practices of detoxification have been implemented since ancient times by many different cultures. A trip to the spa is maintenance for your body and soul, in addition to your skin. It is no different than visiting your local doctor or dentist for a wellness checkup or preventive treatment. Remind your clients that nurturing their skin will enhance their health and wellness, while boosting visible youth, with less wrinkles, better skin tone, and increased hydration and firmness from head to toe! Spend quality time in educating your clients and you may reap the benefits as a holistic skin practitioner!

Keri Berardinelli is a licensed aesthetician, nail technician, and the co-owner of La Verte Wellness Spa in Chagrin Falls, Ohio. She specializes in holistic skin care and body care. You can contact Keri Berardinelli at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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