Category Archives: skincare

the season of giving : you get what you give …

I have to say, it’s super-funny to be wishing people on the street a happy holiday season when there isn’t a flake of snow on the ground and our weather has been non-committal to one steady temperature. As I type this I need a toque and gloves, but also some shades and sunscreen. My entire being – mind and body – is having a bit of trouble adjusting to the season.

It’s also around this time, that our skin begins to have problems adjusting as well. It doesn’t know if it wants to be oily or dry, calm or irritated. Many will just let it be, thinking it’s just part of the seasonal change and that eventually it will work itself out. In the meantime, they hide behind scarves and maybe a bit more makeup and bronzer to liven up their complexion. But in the spirit of the season, you GET what you GIVE … so really, you should be GIVING your skin a solution!

Here are a couple of things to consider as we start to curve around the start of winter :

1. Maintain your routine and don’t get lazy! With all the holiday parties and meet-ups with friends and family you might be tempted to fall asleep without cleansing or toning or moisturizing after a late night. Don’t give in. Continue your proper routine without fail and you’ll make it though the holidays alive.

2. Switch products to address your winter skin issues. You don’t need to buy out your nearby Sephora and overhaul your vanity; but you might need a creamier cleanser to combat dryness. Or maybe, you need a gentler toner to address any skin sensitivity to windburn or chill. Whatever the issue is, identify it, address it, and treat it.

3. Don’t forget to stay hydrated. Temperature drops and all we want is an extra large coffee morning and afternoon, a tumbler of tea every hour, or a tasty hot chocolate topped with whip cream. We fill up on hot beverages and our water intake drops a bit because, hey?!?! Who needs to go tot he bathroom THAT often, right? DON’T forget your water. A tall glass morning and night is a must … and try to add one or two more glasses throughout the day at least.

4. Protect your skin when you’re out and about. Shovelling daily outside? Visiting outdoor Christmas Markets? Enjoying a day of tobogganing? When your outside, don’t forget to protect your skin. The obvious: Sunscreen. The sun hasn’t stopped shining, so you shouldn’t stop protecting. I’m also a big fan of using a light layer of skin salve or skin balm across the cheeks and nose when outside. It can prevent chapping and irritation from harsh winds and wooly scarves!

5. Give your skin what it needs, and get glowing. Your skin will let you know when it likes and doesn’t like something. It will also let you know what it needs. YOU JUST NEED TO PAY ATTENTION. Adjust your routine and products throughout the entire season as needed, and your skin will glow straight past the holidays and well into spring!

-xo
s

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What you should really be looking at when determining your skin type …

Whenever you hit up a Sephora or a beauty department sales associate looking for a new foundation or the latest moisturizer the first thing they will ask is what’s your skin type? This is without fail … and with good intention because really, they just want to make sure you’re getting the right product for your skin type and needs. However, if you aren’t a regular at a dermatologist’s office or a facial bar … you might not know yourself!

Image : Jacks Beauty Department, Berlin

Sales associates and makeup artists are trained to help you determine this but not without asking you a few questions that only you would know. So the real question here is … do you know the answers?

If you’re trying to determine your skin type before making a big skincare purchase, try to look and find the answers to these five important questions :

When you wake up in the morning, does your skin feel :

  1. dry and tight
  2. oily and heavy
  3. the same as when you fell asleep

Ten minutes after cleansing and moisturizing, your skin feels like :

  1. you need more moisturizer
  2. you put on too much moisturizer
  3. you can no longer feel the moisturizer but also feel fresh and clean

When you apply your makeup :

  1. you are unable to get a nice smooth application and powders feel like they are dragging on your skin
  2. you are unable to get liquid or cream makeup to stay in place and it slides around too much
  3. you get a nice even application and don’t have too much trouble with makeup

By midday, your makeup looks :

  1. patchy, and needs some adjustments
  2. shiny, and like it has disappeared or has started to migrate to other areas of the face
  3. the same, but you might need to add some lipgloss

By the end of the day, your skin feels like it is :

  1. inflamed, irritated and/or itchy
  2. greasy, shiny and in need of a good cleanse
  3. tired and ready to be cleansed, but otherwise fine

If you answered mostly 1′s, chances are you’re dry or dehydrated. Mainly 2′s, you’re a candidate for an oiler t-zone. Strictly 3′s, and you’re what most would consider normal.

Knowing the answers to these questions will lead you to making better choices in your skincare and makeup products, and in the end a much happier you with respect to your purchases! But keep this in mind – rarely is anyone just one thing. In fact, it’s more common to be a combination skin type! So, when taking this quick questionnaire keep in mind what your second answer would be if your first answer didn’t exist. Let the makeup artist or sales associate know your answers and see what they recommend!

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getting married? this prep trick will ensure flawless makeup!

In the hustle and bustle of getting married, it’s easy for a bride to put her beauty needs on the back burner as she nears the wedding date! Lack of sleep, poor nutrition, and lots of additional stress combined can create a complexion nightmare come the walk down the aisle and that’s why the common advice for brides is to sleep more, drink more water or eat well, and to delegate wedding day tasks! But there is one piece of advice that brides rarely get that is really important to bridal beauty :

START EXFOLIATING!

While its always a good thing that a bride maintains a steady cleanse and moisturize routine throughout, it isn’t enough to provide an even, smooth “canvas” for your bridal makeup. Exfoliating at least once weekly can resurface the skin in a really good way by removing dead skin cells and dry patches, revealing a brighter and more even complexion. The more even the texture, the easier your foundation, blush and setting powders glide over the skin for a more polish and blended appearance. Almost like you were photoshopped brushed!

Exfoliating regularly is also important if you want that fresh, dewy makeup glow. If your skin is dull, dry or patchy your makeup artist will need to use plenty of product from corrector to powder to mimic the look which in the end won’t feel dewy or fresh at all. Basically, think of it this way : the less imperfections or blemishes you have the less makeup your artist will need to apply letting more of you shine through!

There are plenty of DIY recipes on the good old Internet for you to try and it can be as simple as some brown sugar and coconut oil scrubbed on once weekly. Affordable products are available at your local beauty boutique, or if you have the budget for it, seeing a professional once a month can do wonders! The key takeaway here is that its time to step it up a bit and introduce one more step to your weekly routine. The payoff will be tenfold when you’re in your white gown!

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15 days to better skin : YOU DID IT!

Day 15: January 15

You did it!

You completed our 15 days to better skin guide and I couldn’t be any more
happier that you chose to follow along.

I hope that by following along that you learned a few new things about
your skin, skincare, and yourself; that you are seeing positive changes in your skin
and that you are looking forward to seeing more.

For today, you just need to take the tips and tricks that you learned and continue to put them into positive action. I hope that you are inspired to continue finding new ways to treat and pamper your skin, and that you have a newfound interest
in maintaining a healthy complexion.

Here’s to better skin from Day 16 onward …

xx,
Stephanie+the fresh.beautiful teamĀ 

Posted in beauty OFF duty, better skin guide, face, facials, fresh.beautiful, natural, organic, skin, skincare, tips, toronto | Comments Off

15 days to better skin : discover face oils …

I’m hoping by now your skin is taking top priority in your daily rituals, morning and night; that you’re beginning to reap the benefits, and you want to keep it up. If so, I’m ready to share with you the tip I recommend to all my clientele, regardless of their skin type.

Day 12 : January 12

Embrace face oils.

I have a lot of clients that I recommend this to look at me in shock and concerned that using face oil will just promote ongoing oily skin … but many experts will tell you the exact opposite is true … and so will plenty of my clients.

Whether you apply face oil directly to the skin as is, or add a few drops to your existing moisturizer, face oils can help to regulate oil production and hydrate at the same time. They can also be used to remove makeup and cleanse the skin before you wash, which is much more gentle than stripping away your makeup with a remover or soap based cleanser.

There are some great brands available with a range of face oils to combat skin issues such as acne or rosacea, while others can aid in the fight against aging. You can also check out the health food aisle or a nearby health and nutrition store for natural and organic versions. And the best face oil DIY … well for me, it’s organic coconut oil straight out of the jar.

If you’re still unsure about applying oil directly to the skin, start off small with adding just a drop to your moisturizer or night cream. You’ll still notice results, and eventually become more comfortable with using face oil on its own and directly to the skin.

And that’s when the magic happens …

TIP : Get comfortable with it. Start with a simple face oil before moving on to face oils that help to combat certain skin issues.

HOMEWORK : TRack your progress with face oils. Whip out the camera, and track the changes in your skin after a week of using face oils.

Posted in acne, be beautiful, be fresh, beauty, better skin guide, cleanse, complexion perfection, crystal microdermabrasion, face, facials, natural, organic, skin, skincare, tips, treatments | Comments Off

15 days to better skin : its in the details …

photo cred : cosmopolitan

About now, you’re seeing positive changes in your skin and leaps forward in caring for it. The best way to set off your new glowing skin is to take care of the smaller details as well. One of the smaller details that happens to complement healthy skin are lips.

Day 11 : January 11

Scrub, soften and protect your lips.

Soft kissable lips and smooth clear skin pack a one-two punch in the healthy department.

Start by exfoliating the lips with a gentle lip scrub or soft toothbrush. If you don’t have a lip scrub, you can mix together some coconut oil with brown sugar. Using a gentle circular motion across the lips removes dry skin and flakes revealing smoother skin instantly. Be sure to exfoliate over the lip line as well.

Once your lips are freshly scrubbed, smooth and replenish the area with your favourite natural lip balm. Be liberal with it … and be frequent. And same thing : don’t just apply to the lip area, go over the lip line a bit to nourish and hydrate any finer lines around the mouth.

If you own a lip cream, you can apply this as well for a very intensive lip treatment.

No, kiss away …

TIP : Scrubbing your lips is way different than scrubbing your skin, face, or feet. A gentle touch is all you need. Scrub too hard and your lips may get chapped all over again.

HOMEWORK : Make a habit of having a natural lip balm nearby or in your pocket at all times. Especially in the winter months!

Posted in beauty, better skin guide, cleanse, exfoliating, face, facials, natural, skin, skincare, tips, toronto | Comments Off