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Skin Care Videos & Tips


Skin Care Video & Tip Of The Week

Topical Vitamin C Proven to Work!

Studies at Tulane University, among others, have found that vitamin C can increase collagen production, protect against damage from UVA and UVB rays, correct pigmentation problems, and improve inflammatory skin conditions. The key, however, may be the type of vitamin C used. To date, most research points to L-ascorbic acid as the most potent for wrinkle relief.  You can't go wrong with SkinCeuticals CE Ferulic which is a Three Time Winner Award for Best Serum "Best of Beauty Winner".

Tip #1  Sunscreen

Did you know that one of the best things you can do for your skin to slow down the aging process is to use sunscreen EVERYDAY.   Even if you are just getting in and out of your car, you are being exposed to harmful UVA/UVB rays.  I keep a bottle of SPF 15 or higher in my glove compartment in case I forget to put it on. 


Once I noticed that the left side of my face (drivers side) was aging quicker than the right side …..not only did I freak out, but I was a true believer that I need to wear sunscreen everyday. 


Repeated sun exposure can also cause what are commonly called age spots, or liver spots.  They don't have anything to do with your liver, but have everything to do with sun.  An ‘age spot' is actually a solar lentigo which is a small bit of pigmentation caused by sun exposure.  Age spots are usually found on the hands, arms, and face, and on the back in men


It's easy to think that a cold environment frees you from the risk of sunburn, but solar ultraviolet (UV) rays actually can be more damaging on the slopes than on the beach.


And for heavens sake, please stay out of the tanning booths!!    Karen


Tip #2  Antioxidant

You have heard the saying….New Year….New You.  Let’s start off together.  Remember, things don’t happen overnight, so be patient and try your best to stick with a regimen.  Before you know it, you will begin to see a newer, fresher, younger you in the mirror.

We already know that it is important to wear sunscreen everyday.  The next important thing we can do for our skin is to put on a cream or serum that contains the antioxidant power that is necessary to protect cells from free radicals (such as air pollution, sunlight, alcohol, and cigarette smoke). Another factor is stress; stress produces adrenaline-related destructive free radicals.  I already know that stress is never going to leave my life.  So I must do what I can to protect myself from looking older.

Scientists have learned in the past few years that brewed coffee made from roasted beans is high in antioxidants.  The extract contains high levels of antioxidants called polyphenols that are believed to prevent cellular damage in the skin when applied externally and to boost the immune system when ingested.  CoffeeBerry extract was twice as capable of protecting the skin from UVA damage. It was also better at inhibiting UV-induced inflammation and enzymes associated with melanoma.  “This is one of the most promising new antioxidants to come along in years,” says David McDaniel, assistant professor of clinical dermatology and plastic surgery at Eastern Virginia Medical School in Norfolk, Virginia,  “CoffeeBerry is safe and natural, with the potential to be another superpotent antioxidant like C+E Ferulic Acid or the synthetic idebenone,” he says.

At an independent lab, Cyberderm, in Media, Pennsylvania, scientists recruited ten women, ages 35 to 60, with wrinkles, dry skin, and discoloration. Each was given a basic moisturizer for one side of the face and the same cream with 1 percent CoffeeBerry for the other. Neither the supervisors nor the subjects knew what they were testing. After the women applied the creams twice a day for three weeks, evaluators assessed the results visually and with measuring tools. They found texture and tone on the CoffeeBerry side of the face to be superior in every case, with 46 percent improvement in fine lines and wrinkles, 64 percent in overall skin smoothness, and 79 percent in skin hydration.

This is a GREAT start.  I have been using the CoffeeBerry for approximately 2 months and have truly noticed a big difference in my skin.  Don’t forget the back of your hands.  My wrinkled, mangled mess on the back of my hands has improved dramatically.  I don’t hide them like I used to.  Karen

Tip #3 Sagging Skin

I decided to focus in on skin that has lost its elasticity….you know, sagging, creping or skin that is just hanging.  The reason for this is that I looked in the mirror this morning, and not only did I not see me, I saw my Dad looking back at me.  Mind you, I’m a woman.  I was mortified.  I feared one day I would look like my Mother.  She was beautiful, but older.  But I saw my Dad, jowls and all.  That’s right…..jowls.  How could this be.  It is now time to take action.  It sure is hard to keep up with what time has done to us, but if we can just take a few extra steps every day, we can see noticeable improvement in our efforts.

As we age, saggy skin becomes more and more of a problem. The skin on our face begins to loose elasticity as we age and facial muscles are no longer able to hold facial skin in place. This results in the development of lines, wrinkles, and eventually deep folds. Often times the process begins with delicate lines such as expression lines, brow lines, and mild crow’s feet and later develops into more unsightly sagging in the entire face.

In the past, the only way to deal with or reverse this effect has been with expensive cosmetic surgery, painful toxin injections, and harsh chemical peels. Each of these comes with a long list of potentially serious side effects. Add to that a price tag that is prohibitive for the vast majority of the population and it is easy to see why so many people look to alternative treatments for dealing with saggy skin.


We are featuring 2 new products that will help you fight the battle of time.  Good luck!   SkinCeuticals and Kinerase is being offered up to 30% off.


Preventing Saggy Skin

The best way to deal with saggy skin is to ensure that you take a proactive approach to skin care and follow a few simple steps to help prevent the early onset of facial sagging. Here are some tips to help keep your skin firm: 

 1.  It is important for adults to drink at least 8 full glasses of water a day. Water is your skins natural cleansing system. Water constantly works to flush away toxins and waste products to keep your skin soft and healthy.  I know you hear this all the time, but just try it for a couple of days and see if you notice the difference.  I know I have. 

2.   Sun damage is one of the leading causes of premature saggy skin and facial wrinkles. Always apply a sunscreen with an SPF rating of at least 15 if you plan on being outdoors for more than 30 minutes. Your sunscreen is one of your most powerful weapons against saggy skin and aging spots.  I know I preach this all the time.  I have actually started taking my own advice and have been wearing sunscreen everyday for about 6 months.  Like I mentioned in an earlier newsletter, I keep it in my glove compartment and put it on while sitting at a red light.  Please don’t apply sunscreen while you are driving by using your knee to steer the wheel.

3.  Avoid smoking at all costs. If you are currently a smoker, do whatever it takes to quit – permanently. Smoking actively increases the signs of aging and can increase your risk of developing sagging skin significantly.  I know this can be the hardest thing in the world to do.  If you can’t quit, please, try to cut back.  We want you to be around for a long time.

 4.  Never go to bed with make up on. This will lead to increased stress on your skin and can cause pores to clog and become infected. Be sure to wash your entire face daily with a gentle cleanser. The key here is not to rub, scrape, or be overly abrasive in the process. As with most things in life, moderation is the key to achieving favorable long term results.

What can be done about existing lines, wrinkles, and sagging skin? Traditionally the only solutions available have been painful and expensive cosmetic surgeries, toxin injections, and harsh chemical peels. Each of which has a long list of potentially dangerous side effects. Recent scientific breakthroughs have allowed for the development of more gentle cosmetic products that can reduce saggy skin as well as facial lines and wrinkles without the risks involved with other more traditional procedures. A word of caution, there are some products that produce outstanding results and have independent clinical studies to back up their claims while the market remains flooded with copycat products that deliver nothing more than a hit to your bank account.

We all know that saggy skin can be problematic and sometimes even downright scary. By following the tips listed above and carefully selecting your skin care products, you'll be one step ahead in the battle against sagging skin. Keep your skin looking young and healthy by taking a proactive approach dealing with skin care. We all get old but we don't have to look that way!   Karen

Tip #4  No More Dark Circles
Have you found yourself looking in the mirror and noticed that you have dark circles staring back at you.  That’s right, I seem to have dark circles too.  If you have been reading our weekly newsletters, you might be thinking the same thing I am….boy, I sure am falling apart.  Well, actually I refuse to fall apart…I am just aging.  I will do whatever I can to fight the aging process every step of the way.  As I looked at myself in the mirror making faces to see how to make my jowls disappear I did notice that if I smiled, not only did my jowls disappear, but my dark circles and bags under my eyes disappeared.  Not bad.  All I have to do is smile all the time to make me look younger.  Try it!!  It really works and you will notice that almost everyone will smile back at you.   There’s always that one cranky person that doesn’t like to smile, but who cares, you look great anyway. 

So what makes you look older?  Surprisingly, it might not be wrinkles or gray hair but dark circles under your eyes. Although dark circles under eyes usually aren't a sign of exhaustion or serious illness, they can make you feel old, unhealthy and tired.

My favorite eye creams for under eye puffiness and dark circles would be the Obagi Elasitderm Night Eye Cream and the RevaleSkin Replenishing Eye Therapy. 

Just what constitutes dark circles under eyes is often in the eye of the beholder, but medically, they're defined as round, uniform areas of pigmentation beneath each eye.

•    Allergies
•    Atopic dermatitis (eczema)
•    Heredity — dark under-eye circles can run in families
•    Lifestyle factors, such as smoking and drinking alcohol and caffeinated sodas
•    Nasal congestion (which dilates and darkens the veins that drain from your eyes to your nose)
•    Pigmentation irregularities — these are a particular concern for people of color, especially African Americans and Asians
•    Sun exposure, which prompts your body to produce more melanin, the pigment that gives skin its color

But the most likely culprit causing chronic dark circles, dermatologists say, is excess pigmentation in the skin.

Dilated blood vessels that sit close to the thin under-eye skin are another cause, doctors said. And airborne allergens, which cause blood to pool in the vessels under the skin, can worsen their appearance, said Dr. John A. Persing, a professor and the chief of plastic surgery at the Yale University School of Medicine. (Treatment for these sufferers may be as simple as an antihistamine pill.)

For people who aren’t sure why they have dark circles, he recommends topical products that contain a plumping agent or alphahydroxy acids, which can thicken the skin, or vitamins C and K, which can inflame skin and add volume.

Thinning skin and loss of fat and collagen — common as you age — which make mild to moderate dark circles often respond well to simple and inexpensive treatments, such as:

•    Cold. Try a cold compress, two chilled teaspoons or a bag of frozen peas wrapped in a soft cloth to temporarily reduce dilated and discolored under-eye blood vessels. Or, try a cooled, used teabag.
•    Water – That’s right, drink lots of water.
•    Extra pillows. Elevate your head with two or more pillows to prevent puffiness that develops when fluid pools in your lower eyelids.
•    Extra sleep. Although short nights don't usually cause under-eye circles, a lack of sleep makes you paler and more hollow-eyed, so shadows and circles you already have are more obvious.
•    Dark glasses and sunscreen. Although a tan might hide dark circles in the short term, in the long run, the extra pigment it produces can make circles worse.
•    Saline washes or sprays. Rinsing your sinuses with a saltwater solution (mix 1/4 teaspoon sea salt with 2 cups warm water) or over-the-counter saline spray can help relieve nasal congestion.  This seems like torture.  Who wants to do this….not me!!
•    Cosmetics. Hundreds of skin creams that claim to reduce or prevent under-eye circles crowd department store and drugstore shelves. The results of one well-publicized study showed that a cream containing vitamin K, vitamin C, vitamin E and retinol was moderately effective in treating under-eye circles.
•    Camouflage. The right concealer can do just that — hide dark circles. If the circles under your eyes are bluish, use a peach-colored concealer, not one that's white or gray. And avoid scented products and those containing salicylic or glycolic acid, which can irritate delicate eye tissue, making redness and swelling worse.

I have found that I get the best results using my eye cream in the morning and before bed, I drink lots of water and I sleep mostly on my back with an extra pillow. 

Thank you for taking the time to read my newsletters.  Let me know if I ramble on to much.  If you like what I have to say, this is Karen….if you don’t, I’m Lynn.  Shhh….don’t tell Lynn.

If you have any questions you would like me to answer send me an email at  Karen

Tip #5 Crow's Feet
It seems that if you read just about any ad for any cream on the market today, they will ALL say “miracle cream”.  Knowing that we are aging, we want to believe that these creams work.  I am one of those people.  You spend lots of money trying to find the one cream that really does give us the results we have been dreaming about.  Not to mention that we want to see results in days or minutes.  We don’t want to wait for 6 to 8 weeks.

Last week we covered dark circles under our eyes.  This week, we are going to tackle those pesky crow’s feet.  I noticed that all the smiling I was doing to try to disguise my dark circles and bags, seemed to bring out the lines around my eyes.  Trying to look younger is a never ending process once you hit 40.

I have to say that I have truly found a few good products that really do soften and actually diminish crow’s feet.  I have been so excited watching my eyes get a softer look to them.  I use Obagi Elastiderm Day Eye Gel in the day and use a Retinoid, SkinCeuticals Eye Renewal Gel and then Obagi Elastiderm Night Eye Cream in the evenings.  I hit my eyes hard with all these products.  In other words, I actually stuck with it instead of skipping a day here or there.  I love the results and can’t wait until I hit the 6 to 8 week time frame to see if my eyes get even better.

Crow's-feet are usually the earliest wrinkles to appear on a persons face, Crow's-feet are caused primarily by exposure to the sun--what they call photoaging.

Squinting into the sun contributes to the process as well, explaining why outdoor enthusiasts may be more susceptible to crow's-feet than a less-exposed person. Once the skin has been exposed to sunlight over the years, it loses its elasticity. Squint long enough and often enough, and temporary wrinkle patterns formed at the corners of your eyes eventually become permanent.


Dermatologists agree: If you never smoke, squint or tan your face, you'll get fewer crow's-feet. So the sooner you take steps to prevent crow's-feet, the younger the skin around your eyes will look. If the damage is already done, there are ways to minimize their appearance.

Here's what Doctors suggest for preventing crow's-feet in the first place--or preventing existing lines from getting worse.

Glycolic Acid - You can minimize the appearance of existing crow's-feet by moisturizing the area with an eye cream that contains glycolic acid--one of a group of alpha hydroxy acids--originally derived from sugarcane.  Glycolic acid encourages wrinkled cells to slough off and newer ones to emerge. The moisturizing agents in the cream will prevent any wrinkling from dryness.

Avoid the Sun - Since crow's-feet appear only after sunlight has begun to destroy the skin's elastin and collagen fibers over time, the best way to prevent crow's-feet is to use a sunscreen around the eyes.

Wear sunglasses and hats - In addition to applying sunscreen, wear dark sunglasses and wide-brimmed hats that shield as much of your eye area as possible.

Avoid Smoking - Yet another reason for giving up cigarettes.

Retin-A (Tretinoin), or other retinoids when applied to the skin help increase collagen production, strengthening the structure of the skin and reduces the appearance of wrinkles.  This is my favorite product for anti-aging. 

Tip#6 Anti-Aging  

Treat yourself to the best on Valentines Day.  Per your request, we are featuring our favorite anti-aging brands again this week.  You will truly see your skin transform within a few days.  I know this sounds unbelievable, because I thought the same thing. 


The Revale Skin CoffeeBerry has 19 times more anti-oxidant power of anything out there right now.  It is great for anti-aging, acne, rosacea, melasma, age spots….and the list goes on. 


I have been taking good care of my face but neglected my hands, neck and décolletage.  I found myself hiding my hands.  I was very embarrassed.  When I would drive my car and my hand was on the steering wheel, I would just shake my head at the fact that I never did anything for my hands.  I was already using the CoffeeBerry on my face, neck and décolletage and couldn’t believe the amazing results.  I decided to use the CoffeeBerry on the back of my hands and my forearms.  I cannot begin to tell you the dramatic difference it made.  I noticed little results within just a couple of days.  I have now been using it for approximately 3 months and the results are even greater.  I don’t have the wrinkling or creping I once had.  My skin is actually smooth and soft.  When I drive I don’t cringe while looking at the skin on my arms and hands.


My point in telling you this story is to let you know that if it helped my arms and hands, imagine what it will do to your face.  Once I apply the CoffeeBerry to my face, neck and decolletage, I apply one pump to the back of one of my hands and rub it into the back of both of my hands and forearms.  I am hoping the people from RevaleSkin will come out with a body cream, because I would love to take a bath in this stuff.


I am lucky enough to get compliments on my face at 47 by using this product along with my retinol.  I don’t think I’ll ever get a compliment on my hands, but I do know that I am no longer embarrassed to show them.


Tip #7 Obagi

We are featuring the brand Obagi this week.   We are seeing tremendous results in our customers that have had complaints with acne, melasma (uneven skin tone), age spots and freckles. 

See how Obagi System skin care products work and how they Transform your skin at the cellular level to look and act younger and healthier.

We already know that over time, normal aging and damage from the environment (sun, stress and pollution) cause skin to lose its ability to 'renew' itself properly. Cell turnover slows, causing the dead skin layer at the surface to be thicker and slowing the flow of moisture from within, resulting in dry uneven skin texture. Skin cells are disorganized. Daily exposure to sunlight causes the amount of pigment in each cell to increase, producing freckles or age spots and uneven skin tone. Collagen and elastin begin to break down, causing the skin to lose its resilience, resulting in fine lines, wrinkles and sagging.

The skin's cellular functions are accelerated allowing continual renewal as dead skin cells are replaced by fresh cells pushed to the skin's surface, making the surface smoother and naturally hydrated. Freckles and age spots seem to disappear. Pigment cells are more evenly distributed, helping prevent the appearance of new freckles and age spots. The skin is rich in collagen and elastin that promote resilience and firmness. All these functions work together to keep skin looking and acting younger and healthier.

Tip #8 Obagi & Lip Plumpers

Another holiday, Valentines Day, has come and gone and unfortunately, so have another couple of pounds.   An exciting thing happened though, we stumbled across this lip plumper that contains Hoodia.  Hoodia helps to suppress your appetite.  I immediately put it on my lips to see how it felt.  Thin Gloss also contains a blend of vanilla & peppermint essential oils.  It felt good on my lips and I am just waiting for it to work on my hips.  Check out the page on our site for Thin Gloss to see all the benefits besides plumping your lips and smoothing out fine lines.  This seems to have the potential to be something really great.  

We have heard your requests to keep Obagi on sale.  

See how Obagi System skin care products work and how they Transform your skin at the cellular level to look and feel younger and healthier.

I know we say this on a weekly basis, but over time normal aging and damage from the environment (sun, pollution and stress) can cause the skin to lose its ability to 'renew' itself properly. Cell turnover slows, causing the dead skin layer at the surface to be thicker and slowing the flow of moisture from within, resulting in dry uneven skin texture. Skin cells are disorganized. Daily exposure to sunlight causes the amount of pigment in each cell to increase, producing freckles or age spots and uneven skin tone. Collagen and elastin begin to break down, causing the skin to lose its resilience, resulting in fine lines, wrinkles and sagging.

The skin's cellular functions are accelerated allowing continual renewal as dead skin cells are replaced by fresh cells pushed to the skin's surface, making the surface smoother and naturally hydrated. Freckles and age spots seem to disappear. Pigment cells are more evenly distributed, helping prevent the appearance of new freckles and age spots. The skin is rich in collagen and elastin that promote resilience and firmness. All these functions work together to keep skin looking and feeling younger and healthier.

Tip #9 -Vitamin C
We were honored when the NBC Today Show contacted us, Complete Skin  to  purchase Obagi and Cellex products from our on-line store.  Thank you for choosing us NBC!!

NBC is doing a segment on Friday, February 27, 2009, on Vitamin C’s powerful antioxidant for your skin.  They will be featuring the best brands in the industry:   Obagi Professional-C Serum 10% and Cellex-C High Potency Serum.

Watch these two duke It out on the Today Show….Let’s “C” who wins!!

Our vote is for Obagi…see why…

Vitamin C actually neutralizes free radicals to prevent skin cell damage upon absorption by the skin.  Our vote is for Obagi because it gives superior protection to:

1.  Prevent premature signs of aging, including fine lines and wrinkles
2   Protects against future damage.
3.  Stimulates collagen production for firmer, more resilient skin.
4.  Lighten and brighten skin for more even tone.
5.  Moisturizes and increases skin hydration for more soft, supple
     And smooth-textured skin.

Obagi provides solutions that work at the cellular level for healthier skin, affecting real changes that go beyond cosmetic treatments, solutions that work from the inside out.

Watch these two duke It out on the Today Show….Let’s see who wins!!

Tip #10-Transformation  

 We answer, “YES”!!!!!  We were approached by our wonderful Obagi Rep in December and she challenged our office to use Obagi for 3 months and watch our skin transform.  She wanted us to see first hand the results we would achieve.   Most of us were avid SkinCeuticals users.  We came to find out that SkinCeuticals is mostly preventative.  As we age, we need products that are corrective due to the damage our skin has received over our life, ie., sun damage, pollutants, stress, etc.


So we all began using the Obagi system in December.  We knew our skin was going to go through many stages until we got to where we wanted to be.  Everyday we came into work, we saw each other as we turned red, dry, itchy and peeled like crazy.   Some of us didn’t react as much as others.  It was all normal.  We had to go through the “reaction” phase to get to the other side…..porcelain like skin.  It was worth it if we would obtain the results that were promised to us.  Oh, by the way, did we mention that our Obagi Rep had the most luminescent skin we have ever seen.  I am telling you the truth.  Her skin was our goal.  After this whole ordeal was over, she then became our “Angel”.


So here we are, 3 months later and the results are in:


Obagi took our skin to another level that we didn’t think was possible.  As you age, you think your skin will never “glow” again.  We are all here to tell you… will!  We find ourselves telling anyone that will listen because we can’t believe that are skin is truly glowing with a firmer, plumper and tighter look.  We are very excited about this brand because we are all outshining each other!!  By the way, I can promise you, none of us are under 40.  You will BELIEVE too!


Please read under our tips section for more information on the “Phases” of your transformation!

TIP # 11-Using Retin-A with your Skin Care Regimen

We want to wish all of you a Happy Mother’s Day.  Enjoy your day because you deserve it.  I have actually turned Mother’s Day into Mother’s Week.  I milk it for all I can.  We work hard and deserve extra special treatment. There is a down side though….Father’s Day is right around the corner.  So don’t abuse it because pay back is not fun!!!

We have talked about what our products do to help your skin look better, but we haven’t touched upon the one item that I will NEVER do without.  Retin-A or Tretinoin cream.  Anytime I talk to a customer, I always recommend it.  I have honestly been using Retin-A for over 20 years.  Wow….that is a long time.  I can honestly say that I believe it is the reason that my face isn’t full of wrinkles or age spots.  In other words….I am holding on by a thread and that thread is Retin-A.

Let me explain to you a little bit about it.  I first started using it when I was 27 because I had acne.  Within a month of using Retin-A, an article came out in the paper that stated that studies have proven the effectiveness of Retin-A in getting rid of lines and wrinkles.  Well that did it for me.  I decided right then and there that I would always use Retin-A….and I have, except when I was pregnant and nursing.  This stuff is truly amazing.  It boosts whatever products or skin care regime you are using.  That is why Obagi incorporates it in with their skin care line, because it has been proven to work.  I am proof of that. 

The trick is to not overdue it.  I cannot tell you how many people just give up because their skin is red and irritated.  When you have cell turnover, a little flaking or irritation is normal.  You don’t have to be miserable when using Retin-A.  Find your balance.  It may only be twice a week.  That is ok.  It is still effective and you will still see results.  Retin-A reduces lines and wrinkles, shrinks pores, gets rid of  whiteheads and blackheads, gets rid of freckles, melasma and age spots.  It is a little miracle in a tube. 

Retin-A Help

Here are some guidelines that may make it easier to take this great medicine.

  • Apply Retin-A/Tretinoin in a thin layer at night. A small amount goes a long way.
  • In the morning wash your face with a mild facial scrub or rough wash cloth. This will help reduce the noticeable flaking.
  • After washing, apply a good water-based moisturizer. Yes, guys, this applies to you too. The moisturizer will make the drying effect of the medicine more tolerable.
  • If flaking occurs during the day use a wash cloth to remove it and apply more moisturizer, or just apply moisturizer.
  • Try using a moisturizer that also contains a sunscreen. If not, apply sunscreen anytime you are in the sun even for a short amount of time. Retin-A/Tretinoin makes you more susceptible to sunburn.
  • When you first start using Retin-A, apply it every other night or every 3rd night. The flaking and irritation side effects are usually the worst in the first 2 weeks of application. As your skin adjusts to the medicine, you can apply it more frequently.
  • If you notice an increase in the irritation or flaking, it's ok to take a break for a couple of days. Just don't stop completely.

A derivative of vitamin A, Tretinoin can be found in multiple prescriptions and acne treatments under the names of Retin-A, atralin, renova, avita, and altinac. Tretinoin is advertised to be used to treat mild to moderate acne on excessively sun damaged skin. It irritates the skin, causing skin cells to shed more rapidly and therefore produce new skin more rapidly.  With more skin turnover, dirt has a lower chance of developing within the skin and therefore acne has a lower chance of developing. Over time, wrinkles, acne, darkened, and rough skin can begin to disappear over time. Results are usually seen within 3 to 4 weeks.

Retinol creams have long been used in clinics to treat problem and aging skin. We already know that it is proven to be an effective active anti aging ingredient - something that actually works.  But not all retinol creams are the same and you need to know a bit more about retinol before you choose one. 

In the last week or two a scientific study undertaken by the University of Michigan showed beyond doubt that topically applied retinol creams reduce wrinkles and reverse the signs of skin aging.  The study used retinol in a serum at 0.4% and produced significant results on women in their eighties.

Just imagine what it might do for women in the their forties and fifties!

So - here's a list of  things you really need to know about retinol:

1.     Retinoic acid is a form of Vitamin A which is active in the body and which is proven to have anti aging effects on the skin.

2.     Previous studies were all carried out on Tretinoin which is short for trans-retinoic acid. Tretinoin based creams are proven to reduce fine lines and wrinkles and stimulate the production of collagen.

3.     For many years Tretinoin was the only retinoic acid used in skin rejuvenation and it was used in prescription only products because of the high risk of severe irritation. It was also commonly used for treating acne and other skin disorders.

4.     Recently cosmetic scientists have started developing less irritating forms of retinoic acid to achieve the anti aging effects of Tretinoin without the downside of skin redness and burning. These retinol and pro-retinol compounds allow retinoic acid to be delivered more slowly to the skin and thereby reduce irritation. It was a retinol product of this sort that was used in the Michigan study.

5.     Anti aging pro-retinol compounds available in creams and serums sold now include: Retinol, Retinyl Actate and Retinyl Palmitate - watch out for these names in the list of ingredients

6.     Pro-retinol compounds need to be present at a level that works - ideally a minimum of around 0.5% as in the Michigan study. If the retinol ingredient is listed way down the bottom of the packaging it may mean it's only present at a minute level which won't have any effect at all. Go for retinol products that call themselves that - or reveal the source of the anti aging effect.

7.     More is not necessarily better - retinol can still have an irritating effect on the skin at higher levels - especially if your skin is at all sensitive. Work up to higher levels over time and stick within a general maximum of 1% for anti aging purposes.

8.     All retinol products will make your skin more sensitve to sun damage. You should up your level of sun protection. Wear a broad spectrum sunscreen - at least SPF 30

9.     If you use a retinol serum - you will probably need a good anti aging moisturizer on top

Follow these guidelines using your retinol cream and it will do great things for your skin.  Watch the lines disappear!

Tip # 12

Do your Eyes give your age away? Studies prove that the first place people look at when they see you, is your eyes.  They also prove that people judge your age by looking at your eyes.  Keep them guessing and be happy with who you see in the mirror.

Our favorite anti-aging eye creams are featured on our home page below.  We have found that these eye creams really make a difference on lines, crows feet,puffiness and dark circles. (Skinceuticals a.g.e eye complex, Obagi eye treatment and Revaleskin replenishing eye therapy.

Tip #13

You Won't Recognize Your Skin!!

We have talked about the importance of products that penetrate down to the dermal level.  How best to get your product to have better penetration than to just simply clean your skin thoroughly.  Actually, it isn't that simple.....or is it? 

I have always washed my face with a soft cloth or my hands, but it never really felt completely clean.  I would still have blackheads and my face just didn't feel smooth or soft.  How could I get the best results out of my expensive products if my pores are clogged.  It has been in front of me the whole time....The Clarisonic Brush.  You just don't believe it could make that big of a difference.  You know does!!!!  I cannot believe that I didn't invest in a Clarisonic Brush years ago.  After my first experience I just couldn't stop touching my face.  Really!!  My face has never felt so silky soft.  Even my nose, my neck and my decolletage....every place I used my Clarisonic was soft to the touch like never before.  No blackheads....clean pores. 
Now I believe that my products will get better penetration which means better results, less wrinkles, less lines and less sagging.  A more radiant and youthful glow.

Since my face felt so amazing I thought I would try it on the rest of my body.  I had been in the sun all my life.   The skin on my arms and legs looked dry, thin and wrinkled for my age (48).  After just 7 days using my Clarisonic all over my body, I can visibly see a difference in the texture of my skin.  This brush has literally worked miracles on my skin!!  I wonder if it will help cellulite?  I will let you know!!!   I can't wait to hear what you think once you try it.  Please let us know!!