Beauty Sleep: Better Skin in a Wink

I suggest removing makeup BEFORE your beauty sleep...

I told you about my unexpected results from my humidifier, right? WELL…I got a little nuts and looked into it. You CAN get better skin and you can do it while you sleep. Not buyin’ it? Here’s why: your skin goes into hyper-drive, it is working double hard to repair itself on the “night shift”. Some people think it is because your skin is totally naked, it isn’t covered by makeup, foundation; your skin isn’t battling the sun or other radicals. There was a study by Duke University, researchers added a Vitamin C product to women’s nighttime regiments and they saw almost immediate benefits.

Here’s how to get more out of your “beauty sleep”…

SLEEP ON YOUR BACK: when you mush your face into that pillow, you are creating pillow lines, and researchers are finding that these fold lines can do more damage than we thought.

HYDRATION: Since we always seem to fall back to “hydration”, I’m beginning to think it is actually true!! However, do it inside and out–a great humidifier AND a few extra glasses of water. That also means lubing yourself up in a thick, rich lotion before you hit the sack. (Quit complaining, you’re going to bed, not putting on a pair of skinny jeans or a thin sweater! If you’re changing your sheets like you should be, this shouldn’t be a problem…)

There you go. We can get more in-depth if you like–email me.

Happy Sleeping!



A Pumpkin a Day…

This is SORT of what I'm talking about...

The newest craze in treating acne is the pumpkin. Researchers have found that eating a handful of pumpkin seeds are the next soldier on the war against acne. Pumpkin seeds contain zinc salts as well as Vitamin E and T.

Pumpkins are also being used in facial masks, to treat everything from overly greasy skin and acne to moisturizing and even for bleaching sun spots! I enclosed a few recipes, since Halloween is coming up! Save those pumpkin guts for fresh, clear skin!

Greasy Skin Recipe: Mix 2 tablespoons of boiled pumpkin with 1 tablespoon of Olive Oil. Keep the consistency to a paste because it will have to stick to your face for 20 minutes. Then, wash with cool water. Second Step: Mix 2 tablespoons of pounded fresh pumpkin with egg-white and beat. Put this one on your face for about ten minutes and then rinse with cool water.

Acne: Rub the face with a piece of fresh pumpkin several times a day to get rid of pimples and acne. (This one is pretty hardcore…so…let me know how it works for ya.)

Anti-Aging: Slice up pumpkin and boil, pound pumpkin, add an egg yolk, 1tsp honey and mix carefully. Warm it up, apply to face for 15-20 min. Rinse.

Bleaching Mask: Pound 2tblespoons fresh cleaned pumpkin seeds, adding 2 tblespoons of boiled water as you go. Add 2tblespoons of honey, mix. Put on the face, focusing on pigmented spots as well as freckles. Keep the mask refrigerated, as you can use this mask every day.

There you have it–a better use for those smelly pumpkin guts!


Acne and Humidifiers: Not Just for Allergies Anymore

I had a scratchy throat a few weeks back. I don’t have any more sick days left, so I was on the war path. I began my salt water gargle–don’t laugh, it works. I also dusted off my humidifier, with the hopes of avoiding the flu.

What a side effect: my skin has cleared up–big time! My humidifier cleared up my pimples! Was I surprised? YEAH! Now, there are naysayers on this wide world of intertron. There are those who will disagree with your humidifier clearing up your acne. Here’s why it works: it will help prepare your skin for better absorption of your nighttime acne treatments.

The humidifier will open up those pores and prep them for some primetime absorption. Pick up a nighttime acne treatment and apply before bed. You will have eight hours of unaldulterated absorption.

Humidifiers will also aide in the moisturization of your skin. This will make it easier to skip the heavy lotion and/or foundation in your day hours. Moisturized skin carries a healthy shine that is unmatched by ANY make up, I don’t care how much you paid for it!

So, if you want some soft, healthy skin, pick up your nighttime acne treatment and plug-in the humidifier. I saw a difference in the appearance in a few days, it took a couple of weeks to commit to a humidifier forever.

Good Luck!!



Sleep Can Impact Acne–Guilty as Charged

Woooooo! I’m going to Disney Land tomorrow! YESSSSS! But, there is a problem. Because I am going out of town this week, I have spent the whole week doing a double dose of work. I had to do this week’s work as well as next. What does that mean? It means that I haven’t slept in days. Does sleep affect acne? YES. A LOT. In fact, the very first place I see lack of sleep is in my skin. I know that sounds dumb, but after a week of burning the candle at both ends, I am left with a face full of screaming acne. Even before the dark circles pop up. Does sleep cause acne? Not really…it is more of an indirect affect.

Can sleep cure acne? Wouldn’t that be awesome?! Sleep is important, it is not an option. Sleep deprivation can lead to death—a result significantly worse than acne. Your sleep is your body’s maintenance time, you’re re-charging the battery.  If you don’t do regular maintenance, your body is going to start to break down, with your skin being the first thing to suffer.

Everyone has a different number of hours to sleep; some people sleep five hours and are ready to tackle the world. Others sleep ten hours and they still can’t wake up on time! Lack of sleep will cause inflammation—acne. It will cause an increased insulin resistance—this will also lead to weight issues. Your insulin is all outta whack, now you’re eating weird, which will compound your skin issues. Your insulin levels have a lot to do with your stress levels, high stress levels will impact your acne.

Last but not least, you’re going to see some depression because of your lack of sleep. So. For all of our multi-tasking and hard-working ethics, we still don’t have enough hours in the day. This week I have been so busy that I have been getting roughly three hours of sleep a night…I look like a sea hag! I have also been eating pumpkin drop cookies by the bucketful. (If you haven’t had a pumpkin drop cookie—I highly suggest you look into it, just another perk of the autumn season.)

That said—I need some sleep! This has been such a crazy week—long story and no one cares…but…I have sacrificed enough I think. I promise I will get some serious sleep…in a few days. I’m almost finished with my weekly projects.

Spotted—Some Uneven Skin Tone

OMG. I am freaking OUT! My tan is starting to fade and I am now seeing little spots here and there…it has finally happened. I have a few tiny sun spots! You know those little spots that stay a little tan while the rest of you goes back to winter skin tone? Yeah. Freakin’ great.

NOW what? Well, my doctor checked me out—I’m good. These are the little spots that come from a lack of pigmentation in the skin cells. From what I’m gathering, there are a few ways to handle this issue on your own. First and foremost, you’ve got to keep up with that exfoliation. (Jeez, change the record, already right?!) You’re going to scrub that all down, hoping to get to the new skin underneath. You can do the exfoliation mechanically—with one of those cool little brushes you see. But make sure you are scrubbing with a material that is abrasive enough to really slough off those dead cells.

You can exfoliate with chemicals as well…meaning that you use creams or lotions with “magic” enzymes to break apart the top layer of skin cells. But…you’re going to need the big guns. To really see the results, you’re going to use enzymes, like fruit acids, beta hydroxyl lotions or chemical peels. It sounds extensive…well…it kind of is…you’re stripping the top layer of skin off! These enzymes will work to clean your pores from the inside out. This fixes the uneven skin tone a lot quicker, but it is a slow process to start.

Start the process slowly, gradually and with a mild product. This means anything with AHAS, alpha hydroxy acids. Some of the most common types of AHAs include glycolic acid (found in sugar), malic acid (from apples) and tartaric acid (in grapes). All chemical exfoliants are acidic, meaning they have a pH balance of less than seven. Keep in mind–the lower a product’s pH, the more effective it will be; however, it will also be more intense, so start with a pH of five or six and work your way down from there.

Many over-the-counter creams and lotions claim to lighten dark-skin patches and even out skin tone; however, most of these products yield minimal improvements at best and may take weeks or even months to produce any visible results.

So…there we go. I have a few months of chemical peels and gentle exfoliation.

If you’re dealing with some little speckle-freckles, exfoliate. Big time. Then cross your fingers…

Mega Dose of B5 for Acne

First, let’s start by saying the megadoses of ANYthing probably can’t be the best idea–at least in the longterm. In the short term, you could see results. But, I saw a couple of links talking about how great B5 is and how megadosing can help out with bad acne. There are opposing viewpoints, and I am wading through the information to bring you a more reasonable explanation.

Here’s the deal. Vitamin B5 is suspected to quell your acne because it helps reduce the oil in your body. Some studies say that B5 is clearing up their patients’ acne, while other patients report that the vitamin made them break out even harder. Which isn’t completely insane, because sometimes when you choose a new plan of attack, it can actually draw out the pimples faster. (The pimples were going to surface, but your new approach just brought them out faster.)

The side effects are pretty gnarly. A megadose of vitamin B5 will bring on mild stomach irritation, diarrhea, headaches and possible breakouts. B5 is tricky because it can also deplete the rest of the vitamins in your system…bringing on a deficiency. If you are experiencing a deficiency, you will see thinning hair, strong tingling/buzzing sensation in the left foot; constant tiny muscle twitches in the calves; bloating/stomach discomfort after lunch; intense restless legs at night; some fatigue; sore and swollen tongue; mouth ulcers; tooth impressions down the sides; intermittent diarrhea; a rash of dermatitis round the nose; occasional panic attacks; acne also came back. Low blood pressure is also associated with too much vitamin B5. There are topical B5 acne medications as well, though most people won’t use them. Granted, topical B5 seems less effective than the oral B5, but it also gave off way less of the side effects.

Vitamin B5, when used in MODERATION seems quite useful. It has a great effect on skin–overall. The advantages are a reduction in oil and sebum. It will work wonders on your enlarged pores, it is also ideal to even out skin tones and texture. B5 has been known to give people a boost of energy. It is also thought to help improve cystic acne.


So. Yeah. Call me crazy, but I don’t know if mega dosing B5 is worth it. I think there are way more avenues to take beyond loading up on this one. Plus, you could end up breaking out all over again before you get to any type of improvements. Keep the B5 in your rotation, but you don’t have to go crazy.

Remembering 9/11

Ten years ago, everyone remembers exactly where they were standing. I can remember how I watched the towers fall. I remember what I thought and how I felt. Through a shroud of tears, I watched the chaos on a tiny kitchen television.

Today was a bright and warm September day much like 9/11/2001.

Like many others, I got sucked into the television programming around the largest act of terrorism our country has ever endured. I spent hours listening to stories, some triumphant with a near miss and others heavy with the reality of death. I had a friend over, he said he needed “a break,” he told me that watching too much of these programs would be damaging–that they were just too sad to sit through. With a snotty, wet face I disagreed. These people were there, they lived it. They heard that last phone call from their husband or sister, they watched a building brought to its knees. Those are the firefighters that went home that day knowing that their whole crew had been pulverized only hours before. Is it sad? I think to fully give it the magnitude it needs, you have to recalibrate your meaning of “sad.” I don’t know if there is a word for what happened that day.

I say, if these people can live through it, if they can pick up the pieces and try to live some semblance of life–then I can sit through their stories. I feel like I owe it to them. I feel like the absolute and very least that I can do would be to listen, to spend a few hours of my undivided attention to hear what they lived through.