Friday, November 28, 2014

Is your face in need of extra hydration? Try Yonka’s Hydralia or Advanced Optimizer Serum

UPDATE 4/2017:
Yonka has once again changed this product. Now Hydralia is called Hydra+ (Hydra “plus”). It is essentially the same, although not the exactly same ingredients. Please read 4 NEW Skin Boosters from Yonka-Paris to learn more about this new edition of a still wonderful hydrating elixir. I decided to leave the name as it is vs. changing like I have done in so many other articles due to products being discontinued and renamed/rebranded. As you will read below, there were changes to the original products name in the article that published in 2014. So many changes, Yonka, so many changes! Now, on to the article to help you have happier hydrated skin:

Which one of these products should I use?

Many clients want to understand the difference between these two products, and rightfully so! I will explain the benefits and uses of both Hydralia and Optimizer Serum along with why you want to use one or both of these products—especially in the cold, winter months.

First, although it’s been several years since these changes, I wanted to remind you about the former names of these two products in case you’re not up to speed. Advanced Optimizer Serum (and Creme) was formerly called Optimizer Fluid (and Creme). Yonka added “Advanced” and changed Fluid to “Serum.” (Unfortunately, if you ask me. There is also “Yonka Serum,” which many times my clients now confuse with Optimizer Serum. Why, Yonka, why?)

Hydralia replaces Dermols 1, 2, & 3. This, too, is not a change I love. Dermol 1 was a hydration booster for normal to oily and problem skin; Dermol 2 was for true-dry (oil-dry) skin; Dermol 3 was for couperose, red, and sensitive skin. Now they have combined the attributes of all three of these formulations into one product: Hydralia. The basic premise of this hydration helper is the same, but as an aesthetician I fail to see how three skin-specific formulations can truly be made into one product. Still, Hydralia is a great product and one I highly recommend.

Change can be challenging sometimes, especially when you know products (or even people!) from times gone by. For those who never knew the Dermols, Hydralia will have nothing to be compared to. And for those of you who have used the Dermols in the past, I honestly don’t think you will see or feel any difference in the two when using Hydralia. It’s just my brain that is getting in the way!

In the nearly 30 years I have used Yonka skin care products, there have been several changes—some I like and some not so much. Way back when I was first introduced to Yonka there were three gommages, then called “desincrustant.” Now there are just two. Yonka also used to make hair products, which they gave up on. I think as product lines go, Yonka in all these years has had relatively few changes, and the quality of all their products is top-notch. So even though I personally (or professionally) might not like some of the changes, it has not affected how wonderful these products work for your skin. With that said, let’s look at these two hydration boosters.

Now called Hydra+
HYDRALIA is a glycerin-based liquid that you add to your creams (day and night). Anywhere from 2-3 squirts mixed into your cream adds a lot of moisture to your skin. Glycerin is a humectant that helps draw moisture to itself. Some articles I’ve read say it’s a “bad” ingredient because it draws moisture from your skin. But I disagree. Glycerin itself has a very sticky consistency and I find it doubtful it is actually pulling moisture out of your skin. On the contrary. It is pulling moisture from the air onto your skin.

In the Yonka literature on this product it says Hydralia “boosts hydration by 33%, and skin remains 26% more moisturized 8 hours later.” I’m actually not a fan of these seemingly scientific ways of presenting the efficacy of this or any product. But it is what it is. And if the above is true, wow! Hydralia is not as expensive as Optimizer Serum and relatively does the same thing (hydrates the skin). So if you’re on a budget and don’t need both products (I’ll get into that a bit later), then Hydralia may be the option for you.

To say ADVANCED OPTIMIZER SERUM is my favorite product would be an understatement. I love this product! And the reason is what it does for my skin. It is one of the more expensive products in the Yonka line, but it is also one of if not the best.

After I moved to Chicago in 2002, and especially after the first winter I’d experienced with cold and snow for almost 15 years (living in Texas), my skin took a double-take; it was so dehydrated and depleted, I needed help. Prior to my move I really hadn’t used the Optimizer Fluid (as it was called back then)—I just didn’t need it. Now, in Chicago, I was in my early 40s and experiencing a real winter with freezing temperatures outside and a lot of indoor heat from radiators—a sure fire way to remove moisture from the air.

I was experiencing skin changes due to age and at the same time skin changes due to environment. Enter Optimizer Serum. It was a god-send. I used it morning and night starting with that first Chicago winter in 2002 and haven’t stopped since. I am now in my mid-50s and will use this product every day, twice a day, until I am no longer using any products—because my time has come!

What I found was instant hydration without oil. Optimizer Serum has no oils to speak of, it is concentrated in hyaluronic acid and hibiscus seed extract along with many other hydrating proteins and extracts. It goes on underneath your hydrating cream and is used morning and night. This product just makes your skin feel wonderful—in a well-hydrated (not oily) kind of way. I tell all my clients who purchase this product for the first time to be forewarned: you will get addicted to Optimizer Serum. You will get used to how your skin feels while using it; skin that feels as it should—hydrated and “comfortable.”

Even acneic skin can use this product. In many cases people with acne don’t like to (and some actually don’t need to) use moisturizers on their already oily, acneic skin. This gel hydrator is perfect. It has nourishing complexes as well as moisturizing ingredients that don’t add any oil to the skin. Yes, it’s pricey, but a little goes a long way, and it will help with the acne condition simply because it has wonderful (healing and effective) Yonka ingredients.

When I was in my 20s, 30s, and up to my 40s, using Hydralia (Dermol 1, actually) was plenty for me in the winter months only. During the rest of the year using my moisturizers (morning and night) was sufficient to keep my skin feeling hydrated. Then as I moved into my 40s, and definitely once I was living in Chicago, things changed and I needed more. As you’ve read I started using Optimizer Serum, which again, I used in the winter only—at first.

Because a Chicago winter can be brutal and long, I found in the deep of the coldest months I needed to use both Optimizer Serum and Hydralia. By using the two products my skin felt great. With only one or the other my face felt a bit dehydrated. As the warmer weather came, I stopped feeling the extreme need, and stopped using Hydralia and just opted for Optimizer Serum on a daily basis. Even before I left Chicagoland in 2007, I was using the Serum both morning and night—and not just in the wintertime anymore. That change occurred as my skin aged and I simply needed more moisture (but not more oil—yet).

Now that I live in Colorado and now that I am 53, I continue to use Optimizer Serum all year round, 365. I also have changed my creams over to all true-dry products. Even in Chicago my skin wasn’t classic dry (oil-dry), it was just dehydrated in the winter months. Back then I used the white toner (for normal to oily skin) and normal to oily/combination skin moisturizing creams (all Yonka, of course!). Now living in a moisture-dry environment (Colorado) and at the same time having gone into menopause, I need to artificially lubricate my oil-depleted skin through the use of true-dry skin products.

It isn’t officially winter (although we’ve had a lot of snow lately) and even though I haven’t felt the need quite yet, pretty soon I will start using Hydralia (morning and night) with my creams. This will help boost the hydration level of my skin that will no doubt be depleted by the cold of a Colorado winter. I now need both products in the winter to keep my skin feeling hydrated, versus earlier (when I was younger) I could use one or the other. Some of you will fit into that category of only needing a product like Hydralia to add moisture in the winter months. And some of you, like me, will need extra moisture all year round (use Optimize Serum!) along with some additional help in the winter, which is where you’d add Hydralia.

Here is my personal skin care routine and the order I use the products:
  • Lait Nettoyant (blue milk cleanser)
  • Optimizer Serum*
  • Lotion PS (pink toner for true-dry skin)
  • Masque #1 (my other favorite product!)
  • Nutri-Contour eye cream, although I also use Phyto- and Alpha-Contour as well ♥
*I put Optimizer Serum on my dry, just washed skin. Why? I like for this hydration fluid to go directly on my skin to get soaked up without anything under it. Please don’t worry about the order so much, you really can’t go wrong if you put the toner on first then the Serum. This is my preference and it’s how I instruct my clients. I tell them also not to worry!

As you can see, I use one moisturizer (Masque #1) morning and night. This cream adds so much good moisture to my skin, I can’t live without it. I do use different creams in the heat of the summer months (usually Vital Defense cream) but for wintertime, Masque #1 is my favorite skin saver.

Of course I do The Extras—sometimes more often, sometimes less. I do try to gommage at least once a week; the clay I do less often now that my skin isn’t oily. However clay on true-dry skin still has wonderful benefits.

If your creams just aren’t keeping your skin hydrated enough during the winter, try Yonka’s Advanced Optimizer Serum and/or Hydralia to help boost the hydration level of your skin. And if you feel you need extra hydration outside of a cold winter season, use one or both of these wonderful products all year round. You simply cannot go wrong with Yonka-Paris skin care products!

For more information, see:
Optimizer Serum and Masque #1 are life savers (skin savers) for me!