A favourite among celebrity A-listers Victoria Beckham and Miranda Kerr, rosehip seed oil has become a popular home treatment miracle oil of sorts. Rosehip seed oil is derived from the fruit left behind by a rose after its petals have all fallen. Boasting benefits to the skin, hair and nails, it’s no wonder that this oil has even gotten the royal seal of approval from none other than Duchess Kate Middleton. Not convinced yet? Here are 5 benefits of rosehip seed oil that will make you head out the door for one. View Post

Fair 

If you have fair skin, you are likely to be prone to irritation, sensitivity and UV damage. You also show signs of premature aging the earliest. Simply put, wrinkles, pigmentation and skin roughness are common problems you’d spot.

This is why it is important for you to choose skin care products that protects your skin from UV damage. Since sun protection is the key to healthy skin for you, you should use a sunscreen daily, with at least SPF 20. It is also recommended for you to exfoliate your skin regularly to slough off the damaged surface skin and reveal younger and healthier skin.

Medium 

You have more melanin in your skin, giving you natural UV protection, hence premature aging would not be that huge a concern. You may however, be more likely to experience hyperpigmentation. You are also more prone to breakouts and large pores.

Cleansers containing salicylic acid can help to reduce both oil and breakouts. A common mistake is to pile on powder to mattify your face, but we would advice you against it as it may end up clogging your pores. You may want to use blotting papers instead for a quick fix.

Dark 

You are the least prone to UV damage and likely to appear more youthful as compared to your fairer skinned peers. (yay!) However, hyperpigmentation and acne scars can be a problem.

Similar to people with medium skin tone, you should use cleansers that contain salicylic acid once or twice a day. This can help you fight acne problems. It is also recommended for you to introduce spot treatment products into your beauty regimen to prevent unsightly and stubborn acne/pigmentation spots.

 

Now that you know your skin tone characteristics, it would be wise to tweak your skin care regimen according to your skin tone to optimize the results of your products! GOOD LUCK 😀

Pregnancy is usually a period of many changes due to changing hormonal levels. While pregnancy brings a lot of happiness and joy, the hormonal changes sometimes bring along some skin problems like acne, pigmentation problems, dry and itchy skin, varicose veins, brittle nails and hair, etc. A part of feeling good during pregnancy is also looking good because skin problems can sometimes cause a lot of stress.

Unfortunately, you have less freedom in using skin care products during pregnancy as some of them may be harmful to the unborn baby. There are several ways in which you can overcome this limitation. Here are ten pregnancy skin care tips for expectant mothers.

1. Acne

Acne is the most common problem that plagues pregnant women. You should avoid using any skin care products that contain salicylic acid, benzoyl peroxide or any one of the retinoids. If possible, it is best to avoid using any products having chemical ingredients. If you have to use them at all, consult a dermatologist to find out what is safe for you. The natural way to avoid acne problem is to clean your face regularly because it is oilier than other parts of the body and clogged pores can bring on the acne. Use a mild soap for this. Using oil free moisturizers and cleaners and a natural sunscreen may also help. Eat healthy food and drink plenty of water. Remember that this is a temporary problem and therefore if nothing else works, just grin and bear with it.

2. Stretch Mark

To prevent stretch marks and dry skin you will need to apply some oils daily. You can either use these oils by mixing them or separately or find some natural products that contain them. The oils that are helpful for the skin during pregnancy are coconut oil, sweet almond oil, jojoba oil, olive oil, castor oil, wheat germ oil and avocado oil. The mixture should be applied on your breasts, abdomen, thighs and buttocks as these are the areas prone to dry skin and stretch marks.

3. Hair Loss

During the pregnancy period due to hormonal changes the hair goes into a dormant or resting phase and there is little hair loss. After pregnancy this hair begins to fall in greater quantities than usual. This may cause a little worry but it is natural and there is no danger of going bald. Some women experience brittle nails and their nails tend to crack or split. The nails will need regular attention during this time. However this condition is temporary and will resolve soon. If the condition gets too aggravated you can consult a specialist who may recommend safe topical nail strengtheners.

4. Essential Oil

Some essential oils are not safe for use during pregnancy especially during the first and the second trimesters as they may bring about an abortion of the fetus. These essential oils are Cinnamon, Basil, Juniper, Lemongrass, Thyme, Sweet marjoram, Myrrh, Peppermint, Pennyroyal, Rosemary and Parsley. Some essential oils on the other hand can be put to very good use to relieve the common symptoms of pregnancy and you can consult an aromatherapist about these.

5. Moisturizing

Moisturizing the skin often during pregnancy will be of great help. This is because the skin tends to be drier than usual during this period. If you have an oily skin then you can use a water based moisturizer and if your skin is dry then use one that is oil based. For healthy skin during pregnancy a regular routine of cleaning and moisturizing must be followed.

6. Cracked Nipples

In the initial stages of breastfeeding women usually suffer form cracked nipples. Lanolin based creams can be used safely without harming your baby. They will heal and soothe the sore nipples. You can also use it as a prevention after each feed. Read instructions before use. It has been observed that leaving a small quantity of milk on the nipple also helps in bringing relief.

7. Varicose Veins

Some pregnant women suffer from varicose veins and this condition is better prevented than treated during pregnancy. The best ways to prevent occurrence of varicose veins is to take a daily gentle walk, avoid standing for long periods, whenever possible place your feet and legs in an elevated position, avoid excessive weight gain and avoid crossing your legs while sitting.

8. Choice of Soap

To avoid skin irritation during pregnancy use only natural soaps. Soaps using an extra bit of coconut oil are quite good. Use only soaps made from vegetable oils that don’t contain any perfume, chemicals or dyes. You can get natural soaps at a health food store.

9. Pigmentation

A skin pigmentation problem that affects some women during pregnancy is known as the pregnancy mask or chloasma. It affects women with darker complexions more than others. Patches of pigmented dark skin usually appear on the woman’s face and also around the nipples and between the thighs. Some women also experience the ‘line of pregnancy’ or linea nigra which is a dark line of pigmentation that runs down the abdomen. These conditions are aggravated by exposure to sunlight. The best way to handle these pigmentation problems is to avoid sun exposure as much as possible or if necessary use a safe sunscreen made from natural products.

10. Itchiness

A natural, safe and cheap method for relieving itchy skin is to add a little bicarbonate of soda into your bath water. A cup of soda added to the water in your bathtub will usually do the trick. It will reduce the itching and soften your skin as an added bonus. Avoid using scented bath products and use only natural soaps while bathing.

Having acne or pigmentation problems? You might want to consider adding an Intense Pulse Light (IPL) treatment to your current facial treatment. Generally, IPL therapy serves as a good compliment to facial treatments as it speeds up the recovery process, which tends to produce better results as the IPL technology allows deeper penetration into the skin, rejuvenating and enhance renewal of collagen which helps in the absorption of products.

The IPL system releases yellow, green and red lights that are emitted in a series of short pulses. The yellow/green light destroys the bacteria which causes acne that thrives in our skin, while the red light directly targets the overactive sebaceous glands that cause outbreaks of pustules (pimples). The light conversion to heat is targeted accurately to the cells deep in the skin, initiating shrinkage of the inflamed sebaceous glands which helps to prevent over-production of excess sebum. Additionally, IPL treatment is effecting in correcting common skin pigmentation problems such as age spots, sun-induced freckles, and symptoms of rosacea, birthmarks, and unsightly veins, acne scarring and other blemishes.

IPL – Black Magic for Skin Rejuvenation

If you are looking for skin rejuvenation, consider the Black Magic™ IPL Treatment instead. Black Magic™ treatment does not target pigments, but aims to rejuvenate the skin instead, by tightening the pores and reducing sebum production. Black Magic™ treatment uses a proprietary formula created in Korea, known as The Photo Reborn Gel or Plasma Magic Gel.  Unlike conventional IPL Gel, which has a clear colour, the Plasma Magic Gel is black.

 

Normal IPL treatment uses an IPL gel that helps prevent light from scattering during the treatment. During a normal IPL treatment, there may be some loss of energy during travelling of light when it’s penetrating into the skin. However, the formulated Plasma Magic Gel can greatly reduce the energy loss and better absorb the light for better results using less energy. Thus, the Black Magic treatment therefore works effectively by diminishing the look of pores and reduces oiliness of skin.

LED Light Therapy

An IPL session at Porcelain includes the use of LED lights to target various skin problems. The LED Light Therapy is a skin rejuvenation treatment that uses non-invasive, non-ablative Red Light Therapy & Blue Light Therapy, and Infrared Light treatment for anti-aging skincare, facial wrinkles, acne treatment, stretch marks and more. It is very common to see that red light therapy associated with anti-aging and blue light therapy to fight acne. The following light colours used in a typical LED Light Therapy treatment tell you the benefits associated with each colour:

 

Red

  • Encourages collagen & elastin regeneration
  • Increases oxygen & blood flow hence perfect to prevent inflammation + acne

Blue

  • Kills bacteria, hence helps with acne

Green

  • Reduces hyper pigmentation
  • Improves skin tone and texture
  • Smoothen fine lines and wrinkles

Yellow

  • Helps treat sunburns, redness, swelling and eczema

 

Want a certain colour to zero in on your problems? A typical treatment at Porcelain will have our friendly therapists selecting the right combination of colours to cater to your unique skin type.

If you are currently undergoing facial treatment for acne or pigmentation, adding on IPL treatments will be a great compliment as technology enables deeper penetration of the products compared to normal facial treatments. For the treatment of problem skin, this means achieving expected results in a faster and more effective manner.

PS: In conjunction with our 3rd birthday, Porcelain is having 1 for 1 promotions for IPL and Black Magic™ IPL Treatments. Click here to book now! Offer ends 31 July 2012.

 I can already hear you groaning, “Oh no! Not another post about fruits and vegetables!”

Don’t worry; I’m not going to tell you about what to eat and what not to eat. In this two-part special, I’ll be giving you more details on a very popular skin care ingredient: Vitamin C. It’s time to expand your knowledge of this vitamin that almost synonymous with citrus fruits!

The Vitamin C Goodness

In a nutshell, vitamin C is essential in the production of collagen, a key structural protein of the skin. Adding vitamin C to a culture of skin cell (fibroblast) dramatically increases the synthesis of collagen. Vitamin C is also an antioxidant so it can help to reduce skin damage caused by free radicals. This means that, if properly administered into skin cells, there is a good chance that vitamin C can reduce wrinkles and improve skin texture. Consider that the signs of aging skin are similar to those associated with the loss of collagen production and damaged collagen. Vitamin C will then be a good weapon to use against the effects of time. It will also be a good ingredient to use in the treatment of aging skin.

Another benefit of vitamin C is that it can lessen hyperpigmentation (at levels 3% or greater) as vitamin C can block tyrosinase, an enzyme that catalyses the production of melanin. This means that topically, vitamin C provides a small amount of UV protection and using a vitamin C serum in the day can give your sunscreen an extra boost. However, it takes about six months to see results.

So Much Goodness!

Hold your horses dears! Before you run off to buy all the vitamin C products off the racks, remember that there are always two sides to a coin. There are some important points you have to take note of when you’re using your vitamin C product. First, vitamin C is relatively unstable as it is easily converted to its oxidised forms in the presence of air or other oxidising agents. Once oxidised, it will not only lose its efficiency, but it might also harm your skin by promoting free radical formation, causing damage to vital molecules such as proteins and DNA. Secondly, only highly concentrated preparations (10% or more) deliver enough vitamin C to the cells to be topically effective.

Can You C It?

There are many vitamin C products out there on the market.  A lot of them have high concentrations of stabilised vitamin C. However, even stabilised vitamin C products might be somewhat oxidised by the time you use them. Your best bet is to purchase vitamin C products that are either white or colourless and stored in a dark bottle. Oxidised at advanced levels, vitamin C will acquire a yellowish tint. This may be the reason why some manufacturers add colouring to their vitamin C products. Unfortunately, this is not a tell-tale indication of oxidised vitamin C as it is colourless at its initial stages. Vitamin C products stored in dark coloured containers can help to prevent oxidation.

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Stay tuned for the next part of this series! I’ll be talking about the different derivatives of vitamin C often found in skin care products! Whatever is it, just always remember that there is no single miracle ingredient in skin care. Like other products, always use them with caution. Always pick products from a trustworthy source and watch out for the expiration date. More importantly, always store your products properly (in cool dry places) to stretch the shelf life of your product!(: