Benefits of Aromatherapy

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Benefits of Aromatherapy

Posted on: August 9th, 2021

Aromatherapy is a holistic type of treatment that is also called essential oil therapy, and it utilizes natural plant extracts to promote the health of the body and mind.  Essential oils are made by pressing or steaming various parts of the plant, which ultimately results in the fragrance.  

Essential oils are used in a variety of ways and for aromatherapy, they are used either by being added to a diffuser or they are placed on the skin during a massage.  Essential oils can also be incorporated into hot/cold compresses, inhalers, bathing salts, facial steamers or clay masks.  It is important to note that the oils are not meant to be consumed.  

There are almost 100 different types of essential oils, but there are definitely oils that are more popular than others, mostly due to their benefits.  Many people see the benefits of aromatherapy since it can help with numerous different symptoms, including alleviating headaches, reducing your stress and anxiety, helping with insomnia, managing pain, increasing your immunity, improving digestion and easing muscle pain.  Your massage therapist can go over the different types of essential oils with you prior to your massage and can help you choose which will work best for your specific needs.  

The most popular types of oils are:

  • Peppermint:  Peppermint is known to help alleviate headaches and tension, and can also be used as a digestive aid
  • Eucalyptus:  Eucalyptus can be used to help with a cough and can help to clear mucus out of your chest, it can aid with certain respiratory conditions, including asthma and sinusitis, and can help control your blood sugar level
  • Lavender:  Lavender is often found to be very calming and can help reduce symptoms of insomnia and stress
  • Lemongrass:  Lemongrass is known to reduce stress, depression and anxiety.  It also has antioxidant qualities and anti-inflammatory properties
  • Sandalwood:  Sandalwood can reduce anxiety, stress and can improve your sleep.  It also can help to increase your focus
  • Tea Tree:  Tea tree oil can help with certain skin conditions, including acne.  It can also help with skin inflammation
  • Ylang-Ylang:  Ylang-Ylang can help to alleviate headaches and can also help with nausea

The quality and purity of the oil are very important and it is essential to work with a massage therapist who has vast knowledge and experience utilizing essential oils.  The effects of the oils can also vary from person to person, and should not be used in place of other treatments.  If you are experiencing a medical or mental health concern, it is advisable to discuss treatment with your doctor and ask if they believe you would experience the benefits of aromatherapy.  

Oily Skin Tips

Posted on: July 20th, 2021

It is hard to feel your very best when you are suffering from oily skin. For many people who suffer from oily skin, genetics is often at play and although we can’t change our genetics, there are things that can be done to combat oily skin. Other causes of oily skin include hormonal changes, weather, stress, and beauty products. If you are constantly touching your face, that can also make the problem worse. When you have too much oil in your skin, it can lead to you having acne or other facial blemishes. Fortunately, there are some great tips for oily skin sufferers!

One of the first things that you can do for your oily skin is to take note of how you are cleaning your face. The best way to wash your face is to use a gentle foaming cleanser when you wake up and before you go to bed. If you are using a harsh soap, it can lead to an increase in your skin’s oil production. This can also happen if you use a washcloth. It is best to use clean hands to wash your face.

If you are already using a gentle cleanser and are not noticing a difference, you might want to try to find a product that uses an acid, such as salicylic acid, benzoyl peroxide or beta-hydroxy acid. These products are often marketed as being acne products, but they also work very well for those with oily skin. Another great product is blotting papers. Blotting papers are able to remove excess oil from your skin without causing any dryness.

Another way that you can combat your oily skin is to get a facial. There are certain facials that are extremely effective at eliminating excess oil from your skin. During a facial, your skin is lightly exfoliated, which removes the top layer of your skin. This helps to unclog your pores and allow for the oil in your skin to flow better and avoid breakouts and blemishes.

Finally, there are makeup tricks that you can use to alleviate some of the oiliness. First, you can use a moisturizing matifying lotion that will absorb the oil in your skin and it keeps the oil from mixing with your foundation.

If you are using eye shadow, you can apply a dry eye primer first. If you put moisturizer on throughout the day, using a lightweight moisturizer is your best bet. It is also important to drink enough water throughout the day. In doing so, it prevents your skin from producing excess oil.

If you are still unhappy with your oily skin, you can talk to your esthetician about other remedies that might work for you.

Tips for Those with Oily Skin

Posted on: June 22nd, 2021

Many people wonder what causes someone to have oily skin. For most people, it really comes down to genetics and if this is the cause, you cannot really change that. Other causes include stress, hormonal fluctuations, weather and the skincare products/makeup you are using. Although having oil in your skin is an important part of keeping your skin healthy, when you have too much, it can lead to skin problems. But not to worry; if you suffer from oily skin, there are things that you can do!

The first step to combating oily skin is to use a very gentle foaming cleanser. When you consistently use a gentle cleanser in the morning and before bed, it works wonders to keep your oily skin in check. If you utilize products that contain harsh ingredients, it can actually cause your skin’s oil production to go into overdrive. Using a rough washcloth can do this as well. It is best to use either just your hands to cleanse your face, or a very gentle and soft washcloth.

If you have tried a gentle foaming cleanser consistently and find that you are still having problems with oily skin, the next step would be to find a skincare product that has one of the following acids: salicylic acid, benzoyl peroxide or beta-hydroxy acid. These products are often labeled as acne products, but they also work really well for those with oily skin.

They also sell medicated cleaning pads that have salicylic acid or glycolic acid, which work very well to get oily skin under control. Another great product to try is cosmetic blotting papers. This product works by removing oil from your skin, without causing any dryness.

Getting routine facials is another great way to keep your oily skin under control. Although anyone can benefit from having routine facials, it is especially important for those suffering from oily skin. You can discuss with your skincare specialist exactly which type of facial will work best for your specific skin type.

There are also some great makeup tips that can help to keep your skin looking fresh and can keep the oil in it under control. Before you put on foundation, you can use a lightweight moisturizing matifying lotion that will absorb extra oil and keep it from mixing with your makeup. Throughout the day, in order to maintain that fresh look to your skin, you can use blotting papers or blotting powder to get rid of the shine caused by oil.

If you are wearing eye shadow, you will have better success if you first apply a dry eye primer or powder to your eyelids. This will help to keep the eyeshadow from clumping together. Staying hydrated is another great way to keep your skin under control. When you are hydrated, your skin does not make as much oil. Plus, staying hydrated has so many other health benefits.

If you are still unhappy with your skin, your best bet is to consult with a skincare professional. They will listen to your concerns and help you develop a skincare routine that will work best for your specific skin concerns and goals.

Understanding Which At-Home Beauty Trends are Right for You

Posted on: June 15th, 2021

So many people rely on the internet for information and especially in this day and age, doing things virtually has become increasingly popular. While there are many tips and tricks that you can obtain from the internet, you need to be careful when you are looking for at-home beauty treatments to use. Although there are many products out there that are completely safe and okay for at-home use, there are also products that can actually cause harm to your skin.

Some people find a beauty brand that they really like and try to utilize products just from that brand, but others like to pick and choose products from different companies. You need to be careful when you are combining different skincare products, because there are some skin types that are more sensitive than others, and certain combinations of beauty products can cause you to suffer from skin irritations. In rare cases, some people can actually suffer from a chemical reaction caused by the beauty products they are using. It is so important to consult with a skincare professional to find out which beauty products will work best for you and prevent you from purchasing something that will cause your skin harm.

At-home face masks are a popular beauty product, but there are some types of sheet face masks that the FDA has not regulated. If you purchase a mask that is not regulated, that may be because the mask contains harmful ingredients that can cause damage to your skin. It is important to pay attention to the beauty products you are purchasing and if you are unsure as to which are safe, consult with your skincare professional.

Charcoal is a very popular ingredient in the skincare industry, but charcoal peels can actually strip your skin of its normal cell growth and cause your face to become extra dry. When this happens, your face can actually become oilier since your skin is working harder to make up for the dryness that has occurred. There are many types of chemical peels that are safe to use, but this should only be done under the direction of a skincare professional.
Skincare professionals should really be consulted before starting anything new with your skincare routine and once you have consulted with one, you can have more confidence that you are not doing anything to cause harm to your skin.

How to Control Eczema in Winter

Posted on: February 9th, 2021

Eczema is a very common skin problem and according to the National Eczema Association, there are over 31 million Americans who suffer from it.  There are other skin conditions that are similar to eczema, so if you are unsure of your condition, it is best to consult with your doctor or dermatologist.  

Eczema can look a little different for each person, but the most common symptoms are skin that is:

  • Discolored
  • Incredibly dry
  • Inflamed
  • Swollen
  • Leathery
  • Flaky

In addition to your skin feeling and looking a certain way, many sufferers of this condition experience a certain degree of itching.  When your skin does start to itch, it is important that you do your best not to scratch the area directly, otherwise the condition will actually get worse.  Instead, you need to find a remedy, such as a cream or medication.  

Eczema tends to be worse during the winter, since the severely cold weather tends to dry out skin even more.  There are certain things that you can do though, in order to control your eczema during the winter months.  These include:

  • Avoiding soaps with harsh chemicals-you want to find products that are free of chemicals and fragrances
  • Using a humidifier to add moisture to the air-you can have a whole house humidifier, or you can use smaller humidifiers for your bedroom
  • Use creams, lotions or ointments-you may need to have a medicated ointment, depending on the severity
  • Avoid excessively hot and long showers and baths-hot water dries your skin more, so try to keep the temperature “warm” vs “hot”

There are many different things that can cause a flare-up, including:

  • Shampoos with cocamidopropyl betaine
  • Polyester and wool
  • Certain fragrances
  • Household cleaners with formaldehyde
  • Excessive stress
  • Certain foods, including peanuts, eggs, soy and wheat

Although there is not a cure for eczema, there are things that you can do to reduce your outbreaks. 

What is a Chemical Peel?

Posted on: January 5th, 2021

Chemical peels have been around for a very long time. In fact, the very first chemical peel came about in the 19th century by a dermatologist in Australia, named Ferdinand Ritter von Hebra. There are many reasons why people love this treatment, including how versatile it is. Chemical peels work to improve the appearance of your skin and they can be used on the face, neck or hands.

The reasons that people choose to get a chemical peel can vary, but some reasons are to reduce fine lines on the face, help certain kinds of acne, treat sun damaged skin, reduce dark patches or age spots, improve the appearance of scars, and treat wrinkles.

There are three classifications of chemical peels, and they are light, medium and deep. The type of chemical peel you get will depend on your specific skin type and your skin concerns or goals.

After deciding which type of chemical peel is best for you, your skin will be thoroughly cleansed and the chemical solution is then applied to your face. The treatment generally takes around 45 minutes and the amount of peeling you will experience after depends on which classification your chemical peel was. You will also be given some direction as to how often you should come back for another chemical peel.

After receiving the chemical peel, your skin will be a little more sensitive to the sun, temporarily, so you want to make sure to wear sun protection if you are going outside. You should do your best to avoid the sun for a little while though, but if you do go outside, make sure to wear a broad-spectrum sunscreen and wear a hat and sunglasses to shield your face as much as possible.

It is important to know that your skin will go through a recovery process following the treatment. If you have a light peel, the recovery time can be anywhere from 1-7 days, but a medium to deep peel can take a few weeks for your skin to fully recover.

Many people suffer from various skin concerns and the chances that a chemical peel will help is very likely, since it is such a versatile treatment and can treat so many different skin concerns. This is also a very popular treatment since it offers people a way to improve the appearance of their skin without needing to have surgery.

After a chemical peel, people can expect to have better texture in their skin and their overall skin tone will be improved. You may also experience younger and smoother looking skin. This treatment often gives people a natural boost in confidence since the treatment results are so positive.

Winter Makeup Trends

Posted on: December 9th, 2020

We all know that this year has been a year like no other. Most people are at home more often and many are not wearing a lot of makeup. When people are home, they tend to wear more comfortable clothing, spend less time on their hair and when they do venture out, they may not be thinking about wearing makeup since half of their face will need to be covered with a face mask.

However, the holiday season is upon us and this is a great time to break out of your habits and spend a little more time on yourself. You can rediscover your joy of makeup this winter by using these makeup tips from celebrity makeup artists.

Even though life looks different right now and our full face might not always be visible, our eyes are always a feature that you can apply makeup to. A cat eye is a big trend right now since it brings the drama. You can go for a more subtle cat eye or you can be more dramatic. You can also enhance the look by adding shimmer or glitter and you can also play around with color.

Going along with your eyes, your eyebrows are another area that you can get creative with. Fluffy, natural-looking eyebrows are trending right now. You can get this look by using shaping wax or gel and brushing your eyebrows in an upward motion. If you have some areas that look a little bare, you can use a brow pen to fill it in.

Incorporating more color into your eyes is another big trend right now and you can add drama to either your eyes or your lips, or both! You can experiment and play around with color and decide if you prefer a more monochromatic look, or you can choose either your eyes or your lips to take on bolder color.

Lived-in liner is another popular trend right now and is currently a makeup style being used by Lady Gaga. The lived-in liner look is a smudged, smokey look that you can get by using a soft eyeliner pencil. You can use a gel pencil or a gel crayon eyeliner and once you line your eyes with it, you can take a smudging brush to get the final shape you are looking for.

Although the holidays may look different this year, that does not mean that you have to give up the glam. There are creative ways you can celebrate with your loved ones and still express your individuality with your makeup.

Why you Should Get Your Laser Hair Removal Treatment in Winter

Posted on: December 9th, 2020

Hair removal is incredibly common and while there are many methods of doing this, laser hair removal is a very safe and effective treatment that works well for long-term results. When you have consecutive treatments, the hair growth slows and for some people, the hair growth stops completely. If you are looking to get rid of some unwanted hair, winter is a great time to do so, so by the time spring and summer rolls around, you are all finished with your treatments.

During a laser hair removal treatment, a laser is used that gives off light that the pigment (melanin) in your hair absorbs. The energy from the light gets converted to heat, which causes damage to the hair follicles that make the hairs. Since it takes a long time for those hair follicles to recover, there will not be any new hair growth during that time period. If you have consecutive treatments, it will continue to delay the hair growth and over time, the hair growth may completely stop.

How successful a laser hair removal treatment is depends on your skin type and hair color. It is the pigment of your hair that is affected by the laser though and not your skin pigment. Laser hair removal generally works better for people with darker hair. Fair hair color may not always have the best results. This is a discussion you should have with your doctor and they will discuss which hair removal options will work best for you.

Winter is a perfect time to start your hair removal treatments, since it is recommended that you have not tanned your skin for at least six weeks prior to treatment. You also should abstain from tanning for six weeks after treatment. Most people require more than one treatment, and those are spaced out 4-6 weeks usually. This is why winter is a great time to start treatment, so you are all set by the time the warmer weather rolls around.

Laser hair removal is a quick and painless treatment and the duration of the treatment depends on the size of the area that is being treated. It can take anywhere from 5 minutes, up to an hour. Most patients experience a slight warm feeling and some may feel a sensation similar to a minor sting. Laser hair removal can be used to treat hair on your upper lip, legs, arms, back, chin, chest and bikini line, along with other areas as well. It should not be used around your eyes or genitals though.

If you are thinking about hair removal, you should talk to your doctor and find out which options are best for you so you can get started on the removal of that unwanted hair.

What are Some Stretch Mark Treatment Options?

Posted on: November 20th, 2020

Many people have stretch marks and stretch marks are actually bands of scar tissue that are on your skin.  They are noticeable since they differ in texture from your normal skin, and they can range in color from pink, gray, purple or red.  Although for the most part stretch marks are not problematic in themselves, they can sometimes become itchy or feel sore.  It is good to know there is nothing dangerous about having them, but some people do not like their appearance and want to get rid of them. 

Stretch marks can be found almost anywhere on your body, but the most common places for them to be are on your stomach, legs, buttocks, breasts and upper arms.  Although both men and women can have them, they do more commonly affect women.  

Your skin is composed of three layers which are the epidermis, the dermis and the hypodermis and stretch marks are found in the dermis layer.  Stretch marks are caused when there is a quick expansion and contraction of your skin, such as during pregnancy, a growth spurt or during weight gain/loss.  

If your stretch marks are bothering you, it is good to know that there are a few different types of treatments that you can try.  

  • Topical creams:  Creams are a popular option for stretch marks and this is an affordable and non-invasive way you can treat them.  Creams work best on stretch marks that are recent.  If you have sensitive skin, you should talk to your doctor about which type will work best for you.  Pregnant women should not use creams during pregnancy
  • Heat treatments:  This treatment option uses radio wave energy and ultrasound to bring heat to the dermis layer of your skin, which results in the production of collagen
  • Laser therapy:  This treatment will use light instead of heat in order to lessen the stretch marks’ appearance
  • Microdermabrasion:  During this treatment, tiny crystals are scrubbed onto your skin, which will remove the layers of skin where you have stretch marks

Contact your local med-spa to find out which treatment option will be best for you.

How to Keep Your Skin Looking Beautiful this Winter

Posted on: November 13th, 2020

We are halfway through fall already and it is hard to believe that winter will be here before we know it. Although there are many wonderful things about winter, one of the aspects that is not so great is that the cold, dry air eliminates the moisture in your skin, which can cause red, itchy and irritated skin. In order to keep your skin safe, there are some tips and things that you can add to your daily routine.

Having a whole house humidifier is one of the best things that you can do for your skin. Not only will the added humidity help to keep your throat moist and your home free of static, but it will also help to keep your skin hydrated. Especially in this current environment, many people are working from home and kids are doing school at home, so it is especially important to get this added moisture to the home you are spending all of your time in. You may even want to add a small room humidifier to the rooms that you are spending the most time in, such as a home office or bedroom.

During the winter months, most people tend to spend more time indoors and with the incredibly cold temperatures that we get here in Chicago, many of us tend to keep our heat a little higher, and this actually can cause you to become dehydrated. Most people are good at drinking water during the summer when they are outside and hot, but forget that it is equally important to stay hydrated during the winter. There are many health problems that can come from being dehydrated, and having severely dry skin is one of them.

Hand washing has never been more important in our lives and most of us have become extra diligent with this, but we must remember that water really dries out your skin. Now absolutely you should continue with your great hand-washing routine, but what you should add to this is to apply hand lotion or cream to your hands after you have washed and dried your hands.

You also should think about the time that you are spending in the shower. Although it can be very tempting to spend more time in a warm shower on a very cold day, the hot water in the shower really dries out your skin. It is instead advised that you take a lukewarm shower and that you try to limit yourself to 5-10 minutes.

During the winter is also a great time to reevaluate the products that you are using to make sure that you are choosing products that are actually good for your skin. You want to find products that are cream-based, gentle and fragrance-free, since products containing fragrances and alcohol can make your skin extra dry.

It is also a good idea to incorporate a nighttime routine of applying moisturizer to your face and hands. If you are unsure as to which products will work best for your skin, feel free to talk to your dermatologist or doctor.