Saturday, October 31, 2015

Still confused about “dry” vs. dehydrated skin?

What’s the difference between dry and dehydrated? I’m confused.

A definite misunderstanding surrounds these two separate conditions that are thought to be the same. No wonder you are confused! In the title I put quotation marks around “dry because so many people I see come in saying they they have dry skin when really they are simply dehydrated.

Dehydrated skin is skin where the outer skin cells are not retaining enough water to keep the skin feeling hydrated. There is usually an excessive buildup of dead cells on the surface of dehydrated skin, therefore exfoliation is necessarily (manually removing the dead skin) in order to relieve the condition. No amount of moisturizing (piling on layers of face creams) will truly fix the problem, but through regular and thorough exfoliation, you can greatly reduce or eliminate dehydration. In short, dehydrated skin is lacking water retention and needs exfoliation.

Dry skin or what I call true-dry skin is oil dry. It simply does not emit much or enough oil. Therefore this skin usually does not have blackheads, whiteheads, and almost never has breakout. True-dry skin needs moisturizing to help add oil to its oil-deficient surface. Exfoliation can help, but what is really needed is proper moisturizing with creams to lubricate the oil-deficient outer skin. 

A common mistake people with dehydrated skin make is to over-moisturize. Because their skin feels dry, it seems logical to give the skin more moisture. With true-dry skin this is fine. But if your skin is emitting enough or in some cases too much oil, over-moisturizing is where the problems can really begin. You start off with dehydration and can end up with congestion or breakout on top of the dryness (dehydration).

Making the distinction between dry and dehydrated skin is imperative. Without knowing which skin condition you have, you could really cause problems down the road.

OK, so my skin is dehydrated, not dry. What should I do?

In a word—exfoliate! There are many methods you can use to get rid of the dead skin on your face. Gommage (soft gel peel) is my personal favorite. There are other exfoliators like papaya enzyme peels as well as AHA peels and so forth—all of which can irritate sensitive skin. If your exfoliation system is causing irritation or redness in your skin, you may want to switch to a more gentle one. However you choose to do it, the way to get rid of dead skin cells is to slough them off—or exfoliate. 

Your skin will let you know when it’s time to exfoliate: when it feels tight and dry. During the winter months, you may need to exfoliate more often, maybe 2 or 3 times per week. This depends on your environment (how dry the heat is in your home) and just how dry your skin feels. Remember, exfoliation will relieve that dry feeling. By exfoliating regularly, you can keep your skin soft and supple, even through a rough, cold winter.

Hopefully you are beginning to understand the difference between dry (true-dry) and dehydrated skin. If youve read similar articles on this blog, you know I have tried to clear up this most important issue. As an aesthetician I continue to talk about this with my clients who come in thinking they have true-dry (oil-dry) skin when they are really dehydrated with an oily or normal to oily skin type.

Please read the following to become more familiar with this subjectfor your skins sake!

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Emergen-C—a little effervescence for your health

Whether or not you’re a vitamin taker, you may want to consider adding vitamin C to your daily diet and/or supplement regime. It is vital to proper cell function, yet it is the only vitamin that is neither manufactured nor stored in the body. This means you must get vitamin C in your diet on a daily basis either by supplements or in your food.

My favorite way to get extra vitamin C (other than through fruits and vegetables) is with a product called Emergen-C. It is a powder that comes in single-serving packets. They’re great for travel, you can put Emergen-C packets in your gym bag, or even in your camping backpack. Over the past 10 years, Emergen-C has become more commonplace and very easy to find. It is sold in health food stores, but now it’s even sold in grocery stores.

Simply mix one or two packets of Emergen-C in eight ounces of water once a day, several times a day, or whenever you feel you need an extra boost. If I’m fighting something off, I will take Emergen-C every hour for at least four to five hours. Vitamin C is easily destroyed by stress, alcohol, smoking, and pollution. Whatever vitamin C your body doesn’t absorb is filtered out through your urine, so there is no real threat of taking too much of this vitamin.

Sugar substitute. If you’re craving sweets but trying to stay away from sugar, mix two packets of Emergen-C in a glass of water and enjoy. It will help to quench your desire for sweets because this vitamin drink is very sweet on its own; by drinking this vitamin drink you don’t have to put any “bad” sugar into your system. Emergen-C is available in several flavors, and all of them taste sweet and can help to curb your sugar cravings.

For more information, see:

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

MYTH: Oily skin wrinkles less

Lines and wrinkles are formed from a breakdown in collagen fibers over a long period of expressing, sun exposure, and just plain time. Oily skin does keep a lipid or oily film over the face, which does keep it moisturized and supple (usually to the detriment of the pores, however). The sebaceous or oil glands, however, have nothing to do with collagen fibers.

Oily skin tends to be thick skin; thick skin ages differently. It tends to form one or two deep wrinkles, whereas thin skin usually has many very fine lines. Think of a piece of heavy wool versus a thin piece of silk. When folded, the wool will only crease in one or two places, but the creases will be deep. The silk may form many creases, but they will be superficial.

Men tend to have thicker, oilier skin. Not everyone with an oilier skin type has a thicker skin, however. But, I’m sorry to say ladies, even you who have thin skin that is oily are still not escaping the aging process due to the excess lipids.

The oil content of your skin has very little to do with the aging process. Accumulated sun exposure, genetics, and how expressive you are determine how your lines will form.

For more information see:

Monday, October 26, 2015

Yonka’s LAIT CORPS—ginseng body lotion—DISCONTINUED 4/2018

Yonkas LAIT CORPS is a ginseng and comfrey hydrating body lotion. With its delicately scented botanical aromatics, this intensive moisturizing milk leaves the skin feeling soft, smooth and silky. It balances dry and rough skin with PCA* and sweet almond oil, although this cream is not oily-feeling. Don’t get out of the bath or shower without applying this repairing, hydrating milk to your whole body. *Sodium PCA (pyrrolidone carboxylic acid) is a natural component of our skin. This ingredient acts as a water-binding agent and helps to repair dry, dehydrated skin.

Essential ingredients:
  • Glycerin, sodium PCA 5%—hydrating, repairing
  • Ginseng, grape seed oils rich in essential fats—hydrating, regenerating
  • Comfreysoothing, healing
  • Sweet almond oil—repairing, softening, hydrating
  • Vitamin E—an antioxidant that helps prevent free radical damage
Directions for use:
  • Use daily after shower or bath
  • For the full Yonka experience, fill your bath water with Phyto-Bain
  • Apply LAIT CORPS in the morning and/or evening to dry (vs. wet) skin
  • Combine with Huile Corps (body oil) for extra hydration
For some other information, see:

Friday, October 23, 2015

Acupuncture explained

What is acupuncture and how can it help skin problems? 

The following is an explanation of what acupuncture is, what it does, and how it can help you in many different ways, including helping your skin problems. This article was written by my dear friend and acupuncturist, Sharon Kraus, L.Ac.

When some people think of acupuncture, they cannot get past the word “needle.” For them it conjures the image of thick hypodermics and the pain of an injection or perhaps some comedic Hollywood image of a person with 400 needles stuck into every square inch of his or her body. Well, this could not be further from the truth!

Imagine instead walking into a serene setting, complete with soft music and gentle lighting. You are arriving at the end of a hectic day of meetings and frantic work deadlines. Your shoulders are so tense that they practically touch your ears. Your head aches and is heavy, and your stomach is slightly queasy from the greasy lunch you grabbed on the run. Imagine entering this tranquil space after your long and stressful day. You change into loose-fitting clothing and lie down on a soft massage table.

Your acupuncturist enters the room and begins a series of gentle diagnostic procedures such as feeling your pulse, looking at your tongue, and palpating certain areas of your body such as your arms and legs, belly or back. You will have a chance to tell your acupuncture practitioner what’s been on your mind and your concerns about your body. In addition to paying attention to what you say, he or she will be noticing the sound of your voice, the color and tone of your skin, and your general state of well-being. All of this goes into the diagnosis of your condition and the course of your treatment.

As the treatment begins, he or she may gently insert fine filaments (aka needles)—about the width and diameter of a hair—into specific points on your body. These points are chosen for their location on what is called an acupuncture meridian. Although sometimes there is a sensation of pressure, tingling, or the occasional pinch when the needles are inserted, it truly should be a comfortable process. As you lie on the table, you begin to feel your shoulders relax and the pressure begins to drain from your head. The queasiness in your stomach begins to subside as you float into a state of heavy relaxation. When the hour is up, you leave feeling renewed and perhaps a little sleepy. Or, if you lacked energy before, you might feel like going home and cleaning your house or tackling a project. You might just notice that you feel back in harmony with your world again.
Obviously the above is an idealized view of an acupuncture experience. Your acupuncturist may run a noisy, busy clinic with five tables, each separated by a cloth. But if you have a qualified acupuncturist, the setting is not the main issue. Once the treatment begins, it is likely that your body will relax and go into a slightly altered state of relaxation and healing. It is important, however, to find an acupuncturist who is licensed either statewide or nationally, and whom you can relate to. There are many styles of acupuncture, so I encourage you to try a few different people until you find the person who is right for you.

What is acupuncture and how does it work?

Acupuncture is a system that balances the flow of bioelectrical energy in the body. We are conductive beings, composed largely of water, and the functioning of our very cells is regulated by the flow of positive and negative ions. Although modern science still cannot explain it, the ancient Chinese, probably about 3,000 years ago, began mapping the electrical flows of energy in our bodies through a series of channels called acupuncture meridians. These channels invigorate the organs and the tissue, the flow of the blood, as well as the free-flowing expression of emotions. In that culture there was an understanding that the health of an individual depended on the harmonious interrelationship between all of one’s parts.

Over the centuries, this body of information grew and has continued to be refined throughout China, Japan, and other Asian cultures until present times. Now we see the vast tradition of Oriental medicine, which is a primary system of health care for millions of people, interfacing with modern medicine and Western science. More and more we see Oriental medicine being looked to here in the West to address the “gray” areas for which Western medicine has no clear answer, such as hormonal imbalance, fatigue, fibromyalgia, insomnia, chronic pain, arthritis, menstrual discomfort, and even infertility. The fact is, Oriental medicine can address any condition because it’s not treating the symptom, but the underlying imbalance. Regardless of the other therapies you might be receiving, acupuncture can be a very helpful addition.

In relation to skin care, most of us know that our skin is a major organ of elimination. In Oriental medicine, the skin is associated with the lungs and large intestine, otherwise known as the “metal” element. As you may also know, a buildup of toxicity in the body can lead to problem skin. If toxins can’t be properly eliminated through the bowel, they are likely to be expelled through the sinuses and the skin. Obviously the liver and the kidneys play an important role in the detoxification process as well. Keeping the metal element balanced with all of the other elements and their related organ systems through the use of acupuncture and herbs is one way to assist in the detoxification and maintenance of healthier skin.

Hormonal changes can cause breakouts and sometimes deep, scarring acne. Although hormones were an unknown entity 2,000 years ago in ancient China, there was an understanding that supporting a free flow in all the acupuncture meridians eased stress in the body, allowed for better assimilation of food and elimination of waste, normalized sleep, and improved the regulation of all the body’s cycles. In fact, acupuncture and Chinese herbs are known to be particularly helpful in regulating menstrual cycles and menstrual discomfort, as well as easing symptoms associated with menopause.

In the clinic, I have found that improving the flow of the lymph fluid in the upper part of the body with acupuncture, especially when there is a lot of upper body tension, helps to clear up acne. I have also discovered that many women with hormonal imbalances have either blood stagnation or weak “qi” (or diminished energy flow) in the lower abdomen, often accompanied by tight upper bodies—stiff neck and shoulders. We sometimes diagnose this as weak kidney or spleen qi, with liver qi or blood stagnation that can lead to “damp heat” conditions such as hormonal acne.

Let me translate! What this actually means is that a weakness in the body leads to stagnation of fluids, sometimes referred to as “dampness” in Oriental medicine. Many things can lead to this type of weakness or “qi deficiency,” but it’s important because in some cases the resulting accumulation of fluids can lead to a heat buildup in the body. Toxicity due to sluggish functioning of other organ systems such as the liver and large intestine can also lead to localized heat accumulations. In fact, heat buildup can be generated through repressed or expressed emotions like anger or overexcitement, as well as through elements of diet. Foods such as alcohol, coffee, greasy and spicy foods, excessive intake of “the whites” (i.e., refined sugar and flour), or foods to which one may be allergic can also lead to heat or damp conditions. Truly, the term damp heat can encompass all sorts of inflammatory, viral and bacterial conditions, including acne or herpes, as mentioned before.

Skin problems can have many different etiologies, but the beauty of Oriental medicine is that we examine the cause in each individual and balance the body accordingly. Acupuncture is becoming increasingly popular in the West as our society begins to realize the importance not just of healing a single part but of considering the whole. This concept is inherent in Oriental medicine. We can no longer afford to focus on just one part at the expense of all others, whether it be in relationship to our bodies and our skin, to our planet, or to the whole of humanity.

Thank you, Sharon, for such a lovely piece on the importance of acupuncture and how it relates to (and helps) the skins balance and wellness. For anyone in the Ashland/Medford Oregon area, you can contact Sharon through her website: CLICK HERE.

Also see:

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Why get a facial? The benefits of a professional facial treatment explained

Getting a facial means different things to different people. For some it is a conditioning treatment to maintain their already healthy skin. For others it is a necessary step for keeping their skin trouble-free. Truly, you can benefit from a facial no matter what condition your skin is in.

Similar to getting your teeth cleaned at the dentist, a facial gets rid of embedded debris and deep cleans the pores. These treatments will also super hydrate your outer skin and can go a long way in helping your whole body relax, if only for that hour. Although styles of treatment vary from place to place, I have listed some of the many advantages of getting a professional facial.

Deep cleansing. Initially your face is washed with gentle surface cleansers before it is analyzed with the aid of a magnifying lamp to determine the course of treatment. A procedure known as extraction, where blackheads and whiteheads are carefully removed from the pores manually, is performed when necessary and is an integral part of the deep-cleansing process (for those who need this procedure). Toward the end of the facial, a clay mask is commonly used to further cleanse the pores by lifting out surface debris. No matter what kind of facial you receive, your skin should come out very clean and the pores free from debris.

Exfoliation. This is the sloughing off or removal of outer, dead cells, which leaves the texture of your skin smoother and more refined. It is dead skin and oil that clog the pores, so keeping the surface free from a buildup of dead cells helps fight congestion and enables your skin to retain moisture, making it feel smoother. Different salons incorporate different procedures, but nearly every facial will include some form of exfoliation.

Hydration. Throughout the facial, many nourishing and moisturizing creams are massaged into the skin. Sometimes ampoules (vials containing concentrated extracts or oils) are applied as well. All skin can utilize the benefits of deep hydration. Even oily and problem skin needs to be well hydrated, making the texture feel smoother and the skin look healthier in general. 

Relaxation. Listed last, but certainly not least, the relaxation benefits you receive from having a facial are undeniable. We all have a lot of stress in our busy lives, and it’s important to balance this out with what I call “anti-stress activities.” Whether you’re relaxing in a tub full of bubbles or finding quiet time to read a book, taking time to balance out the stress in your life is the key to health and well-being.

A facial offers you fantastic relaxation benefits. In fact, many people are surprised at how relaxing facials really are. Getting a facial truly is a great escape, a haven where no one can find you. When my clients walk through the door to my office, they instantly start to relax. I’m not pulling teeth here. They know they can let the stresses of the day go, even if it’s just for an hour. Relaxation is a hidden benefit that should not be overlooked when considering having a facial.

When you leave the treatment room, your skin should be very clean, well exfoliated, super-hydrated, and smooth to the touch and have a healthy, well-nourished glow. Allow yourself an escape once in a while with a wonderfully relaxing facial—for your health.

Here are a few more articles that will give you further information on facials:

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Yonka-Paris skin care products defined

From Yonka headquarters:

Treat yourself to the forces of nature. Yonka unveils your true beauty with the living force of nature found in flowers, leaves, fruit, barks, roots, seeds, medicinal herbs from fields, woods and mountains and marine plant life.

The words YON and KA that comprise the mysterious name for this exceptional product come from the vision of two brothers early in the 20th century, Charles and Ernest Multaler. YON is the name for a river in China known to Charles and Ernest as a place of beauty and renewal. They chose this to represent the purity of their formulas. KA is of Egyptian origin and represents life force. Aromatherapy has long been recognized as utilizing the life force of the botanical. Charles and Ernest were able to capture these life forces and integrate them into every product they created, giving their products a quality rarely experienced in skin care.

Yonka has been the undisputed pioneer of professional aesthetic aromatherapy since the 1950s. Through its face, body and sun skin care collections, Yonka gives your skin the most precious that plants can provide: the enlivening essential oils charged with energy from the sun’s rays. In the heart of Yonka, a pure and natural aromatic composition of lavender, cypress, rosemary, thyme, and geranium essential oils: “The 5 Quintessence Essential Oils. This exclusive formula is then blended with a wealth of plant extracts from all over the world.

With their subtle aromas, the essential oils combined with plant, fruit, and marine extracts act to balance, soothe, revive and rejuvenate. Each ingredient has a specific role for your skin: the fruit acids moisturize and enhance the complexion; the vitamins combat free radicals; the seaweed remineralize; and the plant oils nourish and soften.

Each product is created, manufactured and tested by the Laboratories Multaler, a French family-owned company. Each product you buy comes with the guarantee of a genuine, high-quality formulation that delivers instant and long-lasting results. Yonka products are sold by skin care professionals the world over, to offer the most effective personalized Yonka products and beauty treatments that combine pleasure and freshness, visible results, and a renewed sense of well-being.

The Yon-Ka collection provides advanced therapeutic facial care to cope with all skin imbalances and conditions—tightness and flakiness associated with dry skin; over-reactivity of sensitive types; dullness of combination skin; excess shine and blemishes of oily skin; acne lesions caused by problematic skin, as well as sudden loss of essential moisture, typical of dehydrated skin.

Yon-Ka also addresses the onset of premature aging—wrinkles, loss of firmness, tired features, hyper-pigmentation, sun damage, loss of vitality and radiance. In addition to specialized facial care, the collection includes eye and lip care—lack of tone, resilience and nourishment, crow’s feet, expression lines, and puffiness. Body wellness is strongly represented with an arsenal of impressive products formulated to promote and restore—softness, moisture, skin tone and shape of the silhouette, bust contour, heavy leg relief and elasticity following pregnancy and weight fluctuations.
From France, Yon-Ka is termed an aromatheraputic product. Aromatherapy is the science and use of essential oils. Essential oils aren’t, however, oily oils. They are natural essences derived from plants and flowers, usually through a process called distillation. These aromatic essences are sometimes termed “oils because they are lighter than water, thus float on the surface of water like a true oil. Their viscosity, however, is thin—like water.

Essential oils stimulate circulation, balance out oil secretions, help to tone capillaries that cause redness in the skin, provide an anti-bacterial environment when infection is present, and have an overall beneficial effect on skin tone and coloring—to name just a few of their many benefits.

If you have problems with your skin, Yon-Ka can help. If you have normal, no problem skin, Yon-Ka can still help make a positive difference in your skin. We encourage you to try these aromatic, effective, and simple to use products, and you too can experience the pleasure of healthy, beautiful skin.

For any of you who have been to my salons or read articles on this blog, you know I have used Yonka products professionally for nearly 30 years. Obviously I like thema lot. I have seen their efficacy work for many skin types; from dry, Colorado skin to teenagers with acne. I encourage you to give Yonka-Paris a tryfor the long-term health of your skin.

For links to some of my favorite Yonka products, see:

Monday, October 19, 2015

Breakouts explained: What exactly is breakout?

Breakout is like a traffic jam inside your hair follicle or pore. The follicle is like a passageway or tunnel. Oil (sebum) comes up through the follicle and out onto the surface of your skin, picking up dead cells along the way. When too much oil tries to get through at any given time, and/or there are too many dead cells sticking to the follicle wall, it starts a chain reaction resulting in a backup. For instance, when traffic starts to slow down on the highway (follicle), it causes a traffic jam (congestion) with an eventual backup (breakout) that can go on for miles.

Once this backup has started, the amount of oil within the follicle starts to increase. This buildup causes the follicle wall to expand and eventually break. Bacteria rush in, which in turn increases the infection. Now you have a hard, red, and sometimes large bump under your skin, commonly referred to as a pimple, zit, or blemish. Technically it is a pustule (if it has a white or yellow pus-filled head), or a cyst or papule (a bump lurking under the skin that contains infection but has no visible head).

To understand what to do if you have breakouts along with what may be causing your skin problems, please read the following along with other articles contained throughout this blog:

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Ideas on when & where to do a clay mask

Step 1: Put a clay mask on your face. Step 2: Take that necklace off!!!
Where to use a clay mask:

If you are a bath-type person, this is a good place to do a clay mask. Put the clay on your clean, dry face, then grab your spray bottle** and hop into the tub. Relax, enjoy, and every so often spray your face. I don’t recommend splashing the bathwater on your face to keep the mask wet, especially if you have used any bath products in the water. This can really irritate your skin, and the water will probably be too hot for your face to tolerate.
**You never want a clay mask to dry on your skin. Using a spray bottle filled with clean, filtered water is an easy way to keep the clay moist the whole time it’s on your face.

Using a clay mask in a steam room is the perfect marriage of protection and cleansing. The steam is great for stimulating the body’s circulation, but remember the capillaries of the face are very fragile and cannot withstand the intense heat in a steam room. Putting a clay mask on your face creates an occlusive, protective barrier between your skin and the hot steam. And since the clay will stay perfectly moist in this environment, it is an ideal place to use your mask.

Also note that if you find yourself in a steam room without a clay mask handy, I highly recommend wetting a few paper towels and putting them over your face while steaming. The heat is just too intense for your face and can really cause a good deal of capillary damage if you frequent steam rooms “unprotected.” Usually the paper towels at a gym are stiff enough (even when wet) to make a good cover for your face.
This woman's face (and capillaries) would be so much better served by applying a clay mask before getting in the steam room.

When to use a clay mask:

Clay can be used as often as desired. If you have normal to oily skin, blackheads, or any congestion, you will want to use clay at least once a week to keep the pores cleaned out. If you have problem skin and especially if you have acne, you’ll want to mask several times per week. And finally, even true-dry skin can benefit from using a clay mask. Oil-deficient skin doesn’t require the same deep cleansing as does an oilier skin type, but you can still derive many benefits from using a clay mask once every week or two.

It’s best to mask after exfoliating if you’re using them together. Exfoliation will help get rid of excess dead skin as well as superficial debris in the pores. The clay mask further deep cleans the pores along with helping to soothe and calm the surface. Exfoliating and using a clay mask can be done in tandem, once a week (or more) as a mini, at-home facial. They do not need to be done together, but it’s nice to do both if you have the time. Exfoliate, run a bath, put the clay mask on, hop in, and relax. After removing the mask, use your toner and moisturizer along with eye cream.

For more detailed information, see:
No clay mask required

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Yonka-Paris Facial Cleansers explained

Yonka makes five daily cleansing products (only 2 are shown in this photo). For their latest invention, see New WATERLESS Cleanser from Yonka: EAU MICHELLAIRE. They also make a product specifically for men: Yonka for Men—Foam Gel Cleanser. The remaining three are the cleansers I sell the most: Lait Nettoyant, Gel Nettoyant, and Nettyoant Creme. Nettoyant means cleaner or cleaning in French. From here on out, I’ll use the names Milk Cleanser, Gel Cleanser, and Wash Cream to describe each one.

All three cleansers are appropriate for any skin type. I have many clients with true-dry skin who love the Gel Cleanser and clients who have an oilier skin typed who love the Milk. My personal favorite, and the cleanser I’ve used for almost three decades, is the Milk Cleanser. As with anything you use on your skin, it is an individual preference that will attract you to one product over another. In the case of these three products, any skin type can use an of these cleansers. You really can’t go wrong whichever one you choose to use.

LAIT NETTOYANT, or “blue milk cleanser,” as I describe it and use as its name for my client’s benefit (who can pronounce nettoyant?!) is silky and delicately scented. This milky cleanser is appropriate for all skin types. “It cleansers and removes makeup from your face and eyes in a single wipe and rinses off with water. Gentle and protective to the skin’s natural balance, it leaves skin perfectly clean, supple and comfortable.” This is really saying that this cleanser, like all Yonka products, is pH balanced—acidic on the scale, which is what you want (vs. alkaline). All traces of makeup are removed leaving the skin perfectly clean, supple and soft.

Essential ingredients:
  • Gentle plant-based cleansing agents—cleaning, makeup removal
  • Borneol—purifying
  • Brown seaweed derivative, vegetable glycerin—softening, hydrating
Directions for use:
  • Apply LAIT NETTOYANT over face and neck
  • Gently massage in
  • Splash-rinse with tepid water
  • Pat skin dry
  • Apply Yonka spray toner, moisturizer, and eye cream 
Whenever possible, use hands to apply or remove products. Washcloths harbor bacteria and can be harsh on the skin; using your hands allows you to feel your skin. And always use tepid or room temperature water on your face. Never hot, never cold.

GEL NETTOYANT is an “ocean-blue gel that creates a smooth and silky foam appropriate for all skin types. It gently cleanses and removes makeup from face, eyelids, and eyelashes; it purifies and revives the skin. Gentle and protective to the skin’s natural balance, it leaves skin supple, fresh, and comfortable.” Again, this means it respects the natural acidic pH of the skin, which some cleansers, namely alkaline soaps, do not.

Essential ingredients:
  • Gentle plant-based cleansing agents—cleaning, makeup removal
  • Red algae (seaweed), iris—softening, hydrating, purifying
  • Essential oils of lavender, geranium, litsea cubeba—refreshing
Directions for use:
  • Apply GEL NETTOYANT over face and neck
  • Gently massage in
  • Splash-rinse with tepid water
  • Pat skin dry
  • Apply Yonka spray toner, moisturizer, and eye cream
Whenever possible, use hands to apply or remove products. Washcloths harbor bacteria and can be harsh on the skin; using your hands allows you to feel your skin. And always use tepid or room temperature water on your face. Never hot, never cold.

NETTOYANT CREME, or Wash Cream, is a rich cream cleanser that is perfect for sensitive skin that is true-dry. Other skin types can certainly use this cleanser, but generally an oilier skin will prefer a milky wash (Lait Nettoyant) or even a foam gel cleanser (Gel Nettoyant) over a thicker cream. Wash cream goes on like butter and has all the wonderful Yonka Quintessence aromatics, making this a pleasure to use day and night. I have several clients who like to have two different Yonka cleansers on hand, and Wash Cream is definitely one of them. Try this cream cleanser as part of your daily Basics routine. 

Essential ingredients:
  • Gentle plant-based cleansing agents—cleaning, makeup removal
  • Red algae (seaweed), iris—softening, hydrating, purifying
  • Essential oils of lavender, geranium, litsea cubeba—refreshing
Directions for use:
  • Apply NETTOYANT CREAM over face and neck
  • Gently massage in
  • Splash-rinse with tepid water
  • Pat skin dry
  • Apply Yonka spray toner, moisturizer, and eye cream
Whenever possible, use your hands to apply or remove products. Washcloths harbor bacteria and can be harsh on the skin; using your hands allows you to feel your skin. And always use tepid or room temperature water on your face. Never hot, never cold. WASH CREAM makes a great shave cream for men.

No matter what cleansing product you decide to use, Yonka or otherwise, keeping your skin clean is paramount to healthy skin. For more information read:

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Product Recommendations Q & As—#2

A friend and I just purchased your book [Timeless Skin] and love it! We are wondering what you think of Neutrogena® products. I am currently 40 and using the cleanser, pore minimizing toner (alcohol-free), and also the regular oil-free moisturizer. I have been told that I look much younger than 40, so I am thinking so far the products seem to be working. I also have some broken capillaries near my nose. I use Bobbi Brown® cosmetics, and those seem to be able to cover up the capillaries. I do exercise quite a bit outdoors, but always use a sunscreen. Any thoughts would be great. My friend wants to purchase the Neutrogena products and also wanted your opinion.

First of all, I want to say congratulations on having a good skin care program. You are doing The Basics daily plus sunscreen when you’re outside. These things may seem obvious to do, but I have seen many clients doing far less than this and paying the price. So well done!

It sounds like you don’t have any real problems with your skin other than broken capillaries. And if you are happy with the results from the products you are using, I would tell you to keep using them if you want to. It is when people have problems with their skin, and therefore specific needs, that a product line like Neutrogena probably isn’t going to do the trick. But if you like your program and don’t see any adverse effects from the products, I say continue on. And if your friend wants to try what you are using—great. Her skin will be different, but these products may work for her too. Then again, they may not. She will just have to experiment and see.

This is not earth-shattering information. Your skin is always going to let you know about what is good for it and what isn’t. It’s when you don’t listen that you can run into problems. But as I said, if you have no-problem skin, you will be able to use products people with problem skin probably cannot. Consider yourself lucky. 

I am interested in a night cream. I am 27 and very age conscious, so the product needs to be anti-aging. I have combination skin—dry cheeks and a slightly congested t-zone area with some broken capillaries throughout my skin.

The first thing I would say in response to this email is this person needs to give up the anti-aging concerns, at least at first. Let me reiterate: you need to prioritize how to treat your skin. The first and foremost concern is the amount of oil your skin is producing. This emailer has combination skin, which means that she has a little too much oil production in the common areas of her nose, forehead and chin. Her cheeks probably aren’t truly dry; they may feel that way, but I imagine the skin on her cheeks is normal. She may, however, be even slightly dehydrated, making her skin feel dry where she isn’t as oily.

Starting with normal to oily skin is really where she needs to focus. The concern she has about aging is justified, of course. She is 27 years old and is just at the beginning of seeing the aging process start. What I want to tell her is: just wait! The lines and wrinkles that you may just have inklings of now will deepen with time, no matter what you do (short of cosmetic procedures). Perhaps reading Ageless Beauty—Part I and Part II (links below) will help to influence how she perceives the aging process. Starting at this early age, still in her 20s, could really make a difference in the long-term. (I know it did for me, now at age 54.)

If she was to go to the department store looking for anti-aging products, she would probably leave with things that would cause problems and not help her skin. No doubt “anti-aging” products would contain ingredients for true-dry skin; ingredients that would work for that type of skin, but on her skin they could increase the congestion she mentioned at best, and at the worst, cause breakout.

Can you see how you can’t get caught up in the marketing words used in skin care products? You must stick to your guns and buy products based on the number one priority: oil or lack of oil produced by your oil glands. If you veer off course, you will be emailing me with a concern about your problem skin, when the cause could be something as simple as using products that aren’t appropriate for your skin type. Even if this person was 57, she still might not need a product that has a lot of oils and emollients. It all would depend on the amount of oil in her pores.

This emailer’s second concern was broken capillaries. This probably causes her skin to be a bit sensitive. But again, she doesn’t necessarily want to buy products specifically for sensitive skin. It all depends on if those same products will work for her normal to oily skin type. Even in the line I sell (Yonka-Paris), many of the products for sensitive skin are better utilized by those who have normal to dry skin. If a client has oily or combination skin and is also sensitive, I will always treat the oil first. Products—any product—shouldn’t cause irritation or aggravate sensitive skin. So using products for normal to oily or combination skin shouldn’t cause her skin to react. If she can find sensitive skin products that don’t also create more congestion in her pores, great. As always, it will be a trial and error process, no matter whose products you are using.

Based on this young lady’s comments, this is how I would prioritize what she needs to look for in skin care products:
  • First, treat the normal to oily skin with skin type appropriate products.
  • Second, know what to do and what not to do for the broken capillaries. See Couperose Skin explained (see link below)
  • Lastly, if aging—or aging well—is a concern, be armed with knowledge about the truth and the myths of products and procedures in regard to aging. 
She would do well to watch the amount of sun exposure she is accumulating as well as look at her diet to see where she may need some adjustments that could help her body in the short and long run. Aging, first and foremost, is genetic. Premature aging and aging in general is next due to sun exposure (especially overexposure). And diet can create health or dis-ease in our bodies.

—not so much in jars of cream, tho
Miracle cures can be found in someone else’s books, blogs, or products. With me you will get the truth, and the truth is we are all aging every second of every day. How are you going to use your time?

For more detailed information, see:

Saturday, October 10, 2015

Yonka for Men: AGE-DEFENSE—Anti-aging hydrating cream

From Yonka headquarters: AGE-DEFENSE is a lightweight, anti-aging lotion that plumps the skin with rich hydration for a smoother complexion. Two hours after application, the skins hydration levels are increased by up to 115%, thereby softening fine lines and wrinkles and promoting increased radiance. A blend of botanicals and essential oils supply exceptional protection, purification and rejuvenation, helping to diminish and prevent visible signs of aging. Formulated especially for men, Age-Defense is great for use after shaving and as a rejuvenating night cream.

Age-Defense is a favorite with many of my male clients. It is non-greasy yet gives lasting moisture for the face. Non-irritating, this cream provides the skin with antioxidant, anti-aging properties, helping to soften fine lines and wrinkles while imparting a subtle Yonka aromatic.
    Essential ingredients: 
    • Virgin baobab oil—hydrating
    • Essential oil of grapefruit—revitalizing, invigorating
    • Moringa seed extract—hydrating
    • Beech buds, imperata cylindricaphyto-stimulants
    • Yonka “Quintessence” (essential oils of thyme, lavender, cypress, geranium, and rosemary)—oxygenates, brightens, purifies

    Directions for use:
    In the morning and/or evening:
    • After cleansing and shaving
    • Spray Yonka Lotion toner (Men’s Lotion YK, Lotion PNG, or Lotion PS)
    • Apply a pea-sized dollop of AGE-DEFENSE cream over face and neck
    • Then use eye cream
    For more information on how to take care of your skin, see: