Category Archives: Skincare Tips

Are Men’s Razors Better Than Women’s?

The debate if men’s razors are better then women’s is always swirling around the shaving universe. Recent studies show that at least 30% of women prefer to use a men’s razor over the women’s razor on a daily basis. Are they really different though? They both have the same amount of blades so they should work the same right? Wrong! Besides color, style, and price (women’s are always more expensive) there is a few differences that should be mentioned when you are choosing your next razor at the drug store.

 

Mens' RazorMen’s facial hair is thick and requires a more aggressive shave to provide the smooth and close shave that men want, because of this the razor is angled differently than women’s(which are more flat). Some women report that they get more nicks and cuts when using a men’s razor while some (including myself) say that they get a smoother shave with less irritation.

 

Most women’s razors are more rounded and made to fit the contours of the female body. The heads of the razor also pivot more than men’s so they can adjust to our body shapes. Makes sense to have a razor made specifically for  a woman’s body shape, since we shave well over 600 square inches of our body compared to guys that only shave about 38 sq. inches. Does it really make a difference though?

 

Through all my research I still can’t say if men’s razors are better, but I can say that most of the women I have asked choose to steal their male counterparts razors when he isn’t looking because, as I have discovered, get a much smoother shave than I ever did with my ladies razor. You can be the judge…. Do you like men’s or women’s razors better?

Teens and Skin Care

Damage to our skin takes years to show itself. We should learn from our past skincare mistakes and begin our tweens and teenagers as early as possible.

Educating but also keeping it simple will be the best approach to talking to your kids about their skin care needs.

Many tweens or teens are embarrassed by their acne. Tween and teen acne is NORMAL! The influx of hormones and changes in the body creates more production of sebum, ie. oil. Some more than others. This evens out over time and can be helped with cleansing the face regularly.

Teen Skin Care

Most teens do not need harsh acne medications or topical ointments if they are cleansing their faces as needed, meaning morning and night. Harsh medications and ointments can over time damage the skin, cause kidney damage and can actually make the skin age faster. Most medications slow down or halt the production of sebum, we produce sebum to keep they skin hydrated and healthy and when you remove this from the skin, not only are you preventing acne but you’re dehydrating the skin which in turn can cause the skin to age faster.

Of course with any good skin care regimen sunscreen is always necessary, before leaving the house and during any prolonged exposure to the sun. Beginning early will protect your tween or teen from sun damage, age spots, premature wrinkles and especially skin cancer.

Getting your tween or teen on a simple yet regular regimen will be key for regulating acne and breakouts, it will also create a good foundation for future skin care maintenance.

How To Soothe Dry, Chapped Winter Skin

Feel like you are losing the battle against dry skin this winter, we can help.

Now that we are in full blown winter mode here in Vermont, the effects have started to set in. Dry, itchy, red skin kind of feeling like an alligator? Well we have the cure to bring your skin back to life!

Ren Lip Balm at Mini Spa VTChapped lips are a killer. It makes it nearly impossible to wear your favorite lipstick or eat your favorite foods. Try using Ren’s Vita Mineral lip balm. We all use it here at the Mini Spa and are in love.

Helpful Hint: Always put your lip balm on before going outside. They need to be protected right from the start.

Having some issues with dry chapped or even splitting of the skin on your hands?

It’s so hard to keep the moisture locked in. Well we have found the remedy. We now carry a new skin care line, Ahava. The hand cream is amazing. It can last through two hand washing, unheard of, right. And it has an all natural ingredient list straight from the dead sea.

Helpful hint: Don’t cut or clip those cracks on your fingers, try using a nail file or nail buffer to smooth them.

Taking good care of your skin all winter will make bringing in spring so much easier. And, we do live in Vermont, you never know when that first skin exposing warm day will strike so be ready.

Why We Need To Exfoliate….

Exfoliation is removing the top layer of the skin – which is mostly made up of dead skin cells.  These layers of dead cells are a month old and are blocking essential oxygen to your skin. When skin cannot breathe, it looks dull and dry. Even more so in the winter.

Exfoliation is necessary for a few reasons: It helps prevent breakouts. Dead skin cells clog pores which can lead to acne and other skin conditions. It improves the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. It can also assist in the reduction of hyperpigmentation such as brown spots or sun spots and Exfoliation also helps with dry skin.

Sugar Scrub for the Face by Debra (Flickr = debcll)There are two different kinds of exfoliation: Chemical and Mechanical. Chemical or “acid” exfoliation does the work for you. You apply it, leave it on the skin, and it works to dissolve the dry skin cells. These exfoliants include ingredients such as Glycolic Acid, AHAs and BHA, and enzymes such as Pumpkin, Papaya, and Pineapple. Mechanical exfoliation is the use of products such as a scrub, where you do the work. Both are beneficial.

The thing to keep in mind is that the goal of exfoliation is to leave your skin feeling softer and looking healthier — not red and irritated. If you over-exfoliate, you could end up doing more harm than good.

For some people, exfoliating scrubs might just be too harsh. If that seems to be the case for you, try using a chemical exfoliator. You’ll probably need to use it only once a week. Also, avoid using an exfoliating tool or cleanser near your eyes, as this skin is far too sensitive and doesn’t need exfoliation.

A good rule of thumb when exfoliating at home is not to do it every day! This is a sure fire way that you will not over do it and cause damage to your skin.

The goal to any skin care product is to improve the condition and the appearance of your skin. If you are ever confused or unsure ask a trained esthetician who can point you in the right direction based on your skin’s needs.

We happen to love the Ren Skincare line!  We suggest you look at the Ren Radiance collection – it offers multiple choices for uncovering youthful skin. Whether you want chemical exfoliation or mechanical, you’ll find a product that’s perfect for getting your glow on!

Do I Really Need To Use Sunscreen In The Winter?

Way too often when I am consulting with a new client before a facial I learn that many do not use or think to apply sunscreen during the winter months.  This of course horrifies me and surprises many of my clients when I say even if its cold and cloudy Sunscreen and SPF is a MUST!

This is why:

Winter Sun - Use SunscreenSnow ups the sun’s power. It might be winter, but the sun reflects off the snow and bounces 80% of its rays back at you. The effect is similar to a typical day at the beach.

Even if there is no snow in some areas of the United States the amount of ultraviolet radiation (UV)  we get from the sun does not drop during the winter months.In some higher elevations such as your favorite mountain , the atmosphere is thinner. Without using proper coverage in these places a severe sunburn can occur and cause major damage to the skin.

Applying Sunscreen regularly will not only decrease the number of sunburns you get, it will also reduce skin cancer risks dramatically and help fight off premature aging.

And a side note, a moisturizer with SPF is good to start the day off with, but reapplying throughout the day is the only real way to protect your skin all day long!  Especially when you are enjoying those fun outdoor winter activities.

Dead Sea Minerals: Fit For a Queen!

A recent trend seen in the cosmetic world has been the use of minerals and ingredients from the Dead Sea. Many of you may have even noticed our new and exciting skin care line Ahava, which features a perfectly balanced concentration of Dead Sea minerals to replenish, rehydrate and recharge your skin. What is it about the Dead Sea that makes it so luxurious for our skin?

Dead Sea Mineral BenefitsFirst of all, let’s talk basics. The Dead Sea is actually a salt lake located between the countries of Israel and Jordan. Its surface and shores happen to be the lowest elevation on Earth. This body of water has one of the highest salt concentrations in the world. Due to the high salinity, the Dead Sea is most famous for swimmers being able to easily float in its waters. The high salinity also contributes to the name of the Dead Sea, as animals and plants are unable to flourish in the harsh environment. The effect is just the opposite on our skin, however!

Many tourists also visit the Dead Sea for supposed health benefits. The minerals and content of the water have been said to treat the symptoms of diseases such as cystic fibrosis, psoriasis, asthma and arthritis. Some health benefits of the water include its low allergen and pollen content, reduced UV component from solar radiation, and high atmospheric pressure. Water from the Dead Sea contains 35% of minerals per liter. Over 21 different minerals include high levels of calcium, magnesium, bromide, sodium and potassium.

Ahava specifically uses the mineral-rich mud found in the Dead Sea, which carries magnesium, calcium, potassium and iron. It is essential to maintaining healthy, supple skin and helps to restore moisture levels while at the same time providing soothing relief to soreness, roughness, redness or cracking. Ahava’s secret ingredient “Osmoter” also contributes to healthier skin. This scientifically balanced Dead Sea water extract ups our cells’ metabolism and draws moisture and nutrients to the outer layers of skin where it is needed the most. It also helps protect us from UV damage.

Egyptian queen Cleopatra is said to have been the first to travel to the Dead Sea and use its nutrients for its health and beauty powers. Why not treat yourself like a queen and give our Ahava Dead Sea products a try!

How to Protect Your Skin in the Winter Months

How To Protect Your Skin in WinterProtecting our faces these days is not just about looking good. Protecting our skin in the winter months is key so that the skin can perform its crucial barrier functions – which means protection from water loss and preventing penetration of infectious agents and allergens.

In the winter months this is particularly important due to the fact that there is less moisture it the air (why humidity is good for the skin) Mix this decrees with indoor heating, hot showers and baths, extreme cold temperatures, and blistery winds all skin types can become dry and irritated. In some cases skin can become itchy and flaky.

In order to help combat this here are a few tips to protect you skin and keeping it looking radiant through the cold months.

1. Avoid taking really hot baths and showers. Try using lukewarm water instead and limit them to 5-10 minutes.

2. Apply moisturizer within minutes of stepping out of the shower, this will help hold in some of the moisture from the water in the upper layer of the skin.

3. Drink A LOT of water.

4. Reapply your moisturizer throughout the day vs. only twice a day(if you wear a foundation or a full coverage makeup be sure to have a spray moisturizer, this will keep your makeup in place and hydrate). This will help not only hydrate the skin but will assist in protecting it from the outside elements and the forced air of the offices and homes.

5. Pick a heavier moisturizer for the winter months.

6. Increase the number of times you exfoliate to help preventing the skin looking dry and dull.

7. Add a creamy healing moisturizing mask or serum to your regimen.

8. Consider purchasing a humidifier for your home.

9. Layer up! Whenever your outside wrap those big scarves around your face, to protect it from wind and cold air.

Beauty Uses For Pumpkin – Tips and Tricks

We all love carving our pumpkins this time of year. We make funny faces, scary faces, or crazy designs, but did you know that the pumpkin has more uses then just for decoration? The vitamin packed pumpkin has some amazing beauty uses, so here are some tips and tricks to get you through this spooky season…

Pumpkin for Beauty - Recipes & TipsSo why is pumpkin good for you? Well, for starters pumpkin contains high levels of beta carotene, which the body naturally converts to vitamin A. It also contains antioxidants and enzymes that speed up cell turnover and creates a healthier, younger looking skin. You can use pumpkin in a variety of body product recipes including, hair conditioners, moisturizers, facial masks, sugar scrubs, and more! Here are a few basic recipe ideas to get you started!

The Pumpkin Foot/Hand Scrub: Using pureed pumpkin, sugar, your choice of essential oils, cinnamon, and vanilla, you will have a delicious smelling scrub for those dry hands and feet that we get this time of year!

The Pumpkin Body Cream: For extra moisture for you dry skin you can use a mix of pumpkin, coconut oil, and ground cinnamon to make a body cream. Make sure you put it on in the shower and rinse off with warm water then gently dry skin with a towel.

The Hair Conditioner: Combine 1 cup pureed pumpkin, half cup yogurt, and 2 tablespoons of honey in a mixing bowl. Apply to the hair from root to tip and place a shower cap over your head to trap in the heat. Let sit for 15 minutes and rinse. Follow up with your regular routine and you will find your hair shiny and silky smooth!

These are just a few ways you can use pumpkin in your fall routine but there are so many other ways to get the benefits. So, before you throw those scraps away after carving or making your pumpkin pie, put some aside to give yourself a little beauty treat.

 

Benefits of Paraffin Wax Treatments

Doctors and therapist have been using paraffin since the Roman Empire. The Romans would pour the hot wax over the body to prepare it for massage therapy. In later years, the French used it to help accelerate the healing of wounds. Paraffin wax is now commonly used in many salons and spas because of the variety of benefits it provides.

Paraffin Wax Hand TreatmentWhat is paraffin? Paraffin is a petroleum based wax (which makes it great for sealing in moisture!) and is melted in a controlled temperature wax pot for continuous use. Here at Tootsies,  feet and or hands are dipped three times into the warm wax and covered with a plastic glove and towel. After a few minutes the wax is cool and is gently pulled away from the skin, taking dead skin cells away and leaving moisture behind. Paraffin is a natural emollient that helps open the pores and make the skin soft and supple as well as increase skins elasticity and mobility. Paraffin is very beneficial to dry cracked skin because it adds a waterproof coating to the skin that helps retain your body’s natural oils. This coating also offers protection from external elements.

Paraffin wax is not only beneficial to skin, but it also has many other health benefits. It has been known to relax muscles, increase blood flow, relieve joint stiffness and reduce pain. People struggling with arthritis, muscle, tendon and ligament ailments, tendonitis, sprains and pulled muscles may find paraffin treatments very helpful.

The next time you visit your salon or spa, ask about getting a paraffin wax treatment.

How To Prevent Dry, Chapped Hands This Winter

As the weather is cooling off, it’s clear that winter is on its way (even if we aren’t ready for it to come!).  But what is it that causes our hands to become dry and chapped during the cold winter months?  And what can we do to prevent it?

When the air becomes cool and dry, it starts to strip the skin of its natural oils and moisture.  The skin on your hands is thinner and has fewer oil glands than most of the body, which makes it harder for them to stay moist. We don’t see this problem as much in the spring or summer because the air is warmer and becomes more humid.  Some doctors say that heat from the wood stove or furnace inside our homes can also contribute to drying out the skin.

There are several ways to combat the feeling of uncomfortable, dry hands and prevent skin from cracking or chapping:

1.   The most important step is to remember to moisturize – constantly! Many hand lotions are too light for dry winter skin, so try heavier lotions and creams that will trap in moisture.

2.   Be gentle when washing your hands.  Try to pat them dry rather than rub, and avoid scalding hot water. Remember to moisturize after you wash!

3.   Avoid wet gloves and other clothing, like socks, that can irritate your skin and cause itching and cracking.

4.   Unfortunately, avoid super-hot baths!  Soaking in a scalding tub of water feels great after playing outside in the cold, but it actually breaks down lipid barriers in the skin that leads to a loss of moisture.  A lukewarm bath with oatmeal can help relieve dry and itchy skin!

5.   If it gets bad, don’t hesitate to seek a specialist.  If hands get to the point where they are flaking, cracking, and inflamed, you may need to see a specialist. Or, come see us at Tootsies for a moisturizing almond hand treatment and a warm paraffin wax hand dip!