Hyperpimentation. How to Fix It!

Hyperpigmentation. It’s something we all struggle with, unfortunately. There are a lot of products out there making huge promises to get rid of it for. I’m going to break it down and explain to you the best options for the skin, without damaging the skin. As you know, that is always my goal. Let’s fix the problem without causing another one.

Some people are more prone to it than others, based on genetics, but everyone is susceptible. From the fairest skin to the darkest. This is why wearing sunscreen is so important for everyone (I’ll get more into that later).

Remember, no one is born with it. Every baby is free of hyperpigmentation, including freckles, which is also a type of hyperpigmentation.

Freckles are caused by melanin. Melanin is a pigment in the skin and is what gives skin its color. When the sun hits the skin, it causes a production on melanin so that it can protect the skin layers underneath. Once melanin builds up in one place, a freckle is the result.

Here are some ways our skin develops the pigmentation.

Sun Exposure– The sun triggers the production of melanin. The skin is usually worse in the summer months. Using good skin care and regular facial treatments, you can minimize damage. It is completely normal to have your skin get darker in some spots in the summer and lighter in those same spots in the winter. I want to also say, and this is important to remember, sun damage can take up to 10 years to show. That means you can think that your skin is fine after a summer in the sun but later your skin will show the damage. I haven’t tanned my face in 10 years and I am still surprised at the damage that shows up. I had a good time in my teen years and my 20’s!

Heat– This one usually surprises people. Most think that as long as they avoid the actual sun, they will not have any pigmentation. It definitely helps but heat triggers inflammation and inflammation triggers the increase of melanin activity. So even if you go to the beach and wear sunscreen, big sunglasses, a big hat and sit under a big umbrella you can still get the damage. Sorry, folks!

Over-Exfoliation– I am super careful with my clients on how often they exfoliate. When I create a home care plan for them, I consider both the physical and chemical exfoliations. Too much can cause pigmentation. As I said above, inflammation triggers the increase of melanin activity. Even if you can’t see the inflammation, it can still be happening.

Picking at Blemishes/Acne– This is bad for many reasons but one of the biggest ones is that it can create what is called post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation (PIH). And like sun damage, you don’t always see it until a few years later.

Hormones– Due to the increase of hormones during pregnancy, melasma is often caused. Just another form of pigmentation but harder to lighten. A lot of women will experience what is called a “pregnancy mask.” The upper lip will darken. This can also happen with birth control and even some medications. Always ask your doctor. I have seen many clients with melasma all over their face so it’s not exclusive to the upper lip. Everyone is different in how they will react but there are some worse than others. I once took a birth control pill and immediately started getting that mask above my lip and I switched that pill real fast! Luckily, no long-term damage was done.

Now I will discuss ways to help the pigmented areas.

Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant, shown to reduce the number of sunburned cells as well as reverse age-related damage to the skin. Antioxidants help fight cell damage from free radicals, which are molecules that could injure cells and increase inflammation.

It does not replace sunscreen, but Vitamin C protects against and may repair UV damage, like discoloration. It also helps brighten the skin, which can make the overall appearance of the skin healthier. This is safe for those pregnant or lactating.

Retinol- A natural form of Vitamin A, this boosts the thickness and elasticity of the skin therefore reducing the signs of wrinkles.

There is an abundant amount of evidence to support that retinol works! Finding it in the right products is the tricky part because you need to have enough to get results. Most over-the-counter products cannot put enough retinol in them to give you the benefits you need. Retinol works by promoting cellular renewal and collagen production to improve skin texture and to diminish brown spots. Not safe for those pregnant and lactating.

This serum is a little more expensive but you only use it about twice a week so lasts longer!

Exfoliation- It’s important not to exfoliate the skin to break up the pigmented areas. As I said before, be careful not to over-exfoliate. I have a great scrub that also acts as a mask. It has glycolic acid and retinol in it with gentle jojoba beads. I love it because over time it helps to lighten and lift hyperpigmentation. I also have these amazing glycolic/retinol pads that act as a toner so it’s a leave-on. Perfect for hyperpigmentation. Book a product consultation with me if you are interested in having me look over your routine using your products.

Great for lightening the skin!

 

Sunscreen- Wear it everyday. SPF 30 is the perfect number. Most damage is done incidentally (about 78%), which means when you are not at the beach but just running errands around town or sitting in your car or next to a window at work. And just as a reminder, sunscreen in your makeup will not help. You have to wear about 7x the amount to actually get that number on the bottle. Sunscreen is skin care and skin care is separate from makeup. Skin care first, makeup second.

Facials- Always important but getting a facial (book with me if you’re local!) when dealing with a specific skin issue will definitely help. Make sure you address your concerns with your esthetician. What you see and what she (or he) sees may be different.

Chemical Peels- Oh my gosh! Anyone who knows me know these are my favorite especially when done in a series. I will only perform the chemical peel series between November and May because of the sun exposure. I am strict on this rule. No point in fixing the skin while damaging it. My series are done weekly over 8 weeks. Slow and steady. I recommend a home care plan so my clients can get the most benefits. They basically have no downtime and can resume normal activities. They might experience some flaking but nothing embarrassing or that will make you want to hide out in your house. You don’t have to peel with a peel because all the change is happening under the top layer.

Results from a Chemical Peel Series and using recommended home care products.

 

www.PSBLounge.com

Listen to the podcast, Pure Skin Talk. 

Advertisements

Save Your Skin During the Holidays!

Shopping, parties, family in town, traveling, etc. There are so many things going on this time of year that sometimes we neglect ourselves and that means, our skin. I’ve compiled a short list of things to remember to save your skin so you don’t have to play catch up in January. It’s bad enough the credit card bills come piling in, do we also need the wrinkles and dry skin?

1. Wear Your Sunscreen– Even though the sun is gone, we still need to be aware of the UVA rays that are present year round. These are the rays that can cause skin cancer and premature aging.

My favorite!

2. If you’re stressed out, your skin will show it. I know that being “stress free” isn’t always an option but it’s important to take a time-out every once in a while. Go do some yoga, get a pedicure, a facial (call me!) or just relax by the fire. We all know these things but we need to be reminded.

3. Manicures- All your running around at the malls and cooking are going to wreak havoc on your hands and nails. Mix any oil (olive, jojoba, grapeseed) with a lotion or apply by itself for extra hydration. If you haven’t already, try a Gel manicure. I love them! Lasts about 2-3 weeks and the best part, at least for me, you don’t have to wait for them to dry! Chipping isn’t really an issue either. It happens but it is pretty rare. A little more expensive than a regular manicure but just think what your sanity is worth. 🙂

4. Chapped Lips- This is when you need a Lip BALM, not a chapstick. A balm will heal your lips and a chapstick will protect your lips. Burt’s Bees is my absolute favorite.

5. Sore Feet- Peppermint is the answer. You can find it in scrubs and lotions and it will make your feet feel fantastic! Peppermint is also great for headaches. I use an inexpensive peppermint oil and put it where the headache is and most often I won’t have to take medicine.

6. Dry Skin- How many times can I talk about this during this time of year? I think it makes it in every blog post! Did you know that people with dry skin tend to age faster than those with oily skin? Yep, there is an advantage to oily skin. 🙂 Keep your skin hydrated and not just your face. I’m obsessed with grapeseed oil so that is my go-to oil. Just make sure you use it consistently. Those heaters can dry out our skin and make things worse. Add a humidifier to your bedroom and turn it on at night. That can help keep the skin hydrated, especially if you turn on the heater.

7. Makeup- Keep it light and dewy and wash your face every night!

www.PSBLounge.com

Follow me on Social Media:

@pureskinandbodylounge

If you live in Orange County, Ca, please come visit me for a facial!

Konjac Sponges. Best. Thing. Ever.

I have not oversold these with that title! I love these sponges! I’ve often said how sensitive my skin is so that means I have to be super careful with how I care for it and especially how I exfoliate it. Scrubs don’t work with my skin. They irritate it. Washcloths, even baby washcloths don’t work either. I can use these sponges every other night and my skin has seriously never been softer.

facial-sponges

They have different ones for the face and the body and for different skin types. Easy to take care of and easy to use. I am even finding myself recommending these to some of my clients instead of a scrub. If I can save you money but still give you amazing skin, I will!

bath-sponges

 

Give Yourself a Mini Facial

Simple, effective, deep cleansing & pure. All of our Facial and Body Sponges are Eco friendly, 100% natural and made from pure edible vegetable roots.The Konjac Sponge is as soft as butter, full of yummy skin friendly goodness! It cleanses the skin like nothing you ever experienced before, leaving the face clean, glowing and silky smooth.

100% Natural vegetable Fibre
Exfoliating
Naturally Deep Cleansing
Removes Water based Make-Up
Suitable for Daily Use
100% Biodegradable
100% Colouring Free
Soft & Gentle
pH balanced
Kind to You & Kind to the Environment

 

SHOP ONLINE!

PSBLounge4c

Is Mom’s Beauty Advice Right?

Things have changed a lot since the 50’s and what women could do then, we can’t necessarily get away with now. Plus, we know so much more about skin and we have access to vital ingredients that will help us age. Of course, some women are just blessed with good skin and are able to not do anything to their skin and still age gracefully. Just because this was your mom, doesn’t mean this will be you. And you may not know until the damage is done.

images

Here are some tips that mom may have given you…

1. Cold Cream is Best- That just isn’t true anymore. We know that retinoids and peptides can stimulate collagen, that antioxidants prevent free-radical damage and the breakdown of collagen and elastin, and that sunscreens prevent damage from ultraviolet light. Cold cream doesn’t contain these types of ingredients.

2. Use Vaseline to Remove Your Eye Makeup- Yes, it will work. You also take the risk of getting breakouts and milia (those tiny white bumps that are common around the eye area). Vaseline can clog pores and does not easily remove.

3. Wash Your Face with Hot Water to Clean Pores- Please don’t do this! Lukewarm is best. Hot water can actually dry out the skin and after continuous use can give you broken capillaries. It is exceptionally bad for those with rosacea and acne. Furthermore, it will not clean your pores. Proper exfoliation is still your best option (until you come in for a facial!).

www.PSBLounge.com

 

UltraSonic Spatula

Have you heard about this new tool? I’m in love! I did a lot of research on this before I decided to purchase because it sounded too good to be true. I finally gave in and thought I would try it out for myself to see what the hype was about.  Of course, my family are my guinea pigs…

Mom- She had this thing on her nose for so many years, she was convinced it was just part of her nose. After just one session with the spatula, the “thing” started erupting (for lack of a better word). Since then, I have used it one more time and it is almost gone!

Dad- He has very dry skin and is constantly scratching his back. He uses walls and posts like a cat and it was always a family joke. One back facial with the spatula and he is itch-free. It has been 4 days and still nothing. He can’t believe it!

Unknown

Sister- Her skin is pretty clear but we decided to try it to see what would happen. The next day, I asked her what she thought and she realized that she wasn’t wearing any concealer (she always wears makeup) because she didn’t need it. She said her skin looked much more even!

UltraSonic Spatula

Push out impurities and clear away excess oil with the sonic vibration of the Skin Spatula. As the skin cells vibrate, the tissue and pores become softened, extracting environmental toxins, oil and makeup. On the flip side, the spatula aids in the absorption of water or gel-based skin products with the same sonic push, giving you double action in one tool. The energy of the ultrasonic waves brightens and evens skin tone while providing long lasting results and radiant skin, all for just minutes a day.

• Vibrating ultrasonic waves exfoliate dead skin & extract dirt and oil from clogged pores

• Hydrates new cells

• Spatula shaped tip can be used to penetrate serums & gels for better efficacy

This spatula is used with EVERY* facial!

Book Online Today!!

*excluding express and teen facials

New Client Facial

Be good to your skin. You have to wear it for the rest of your life.

New Clients!

Customized Facial  $60 (save $20)

Includes:

Skin Care Consultation   (and samples for a full skin care regimen, if interested)

Enzyme  (chosen specifically for your skin)

Extractions

2 Different Masks   (customized for your skin)

Book this New Client Facial any time in the month of September and get this great price!

Book Online!   www.Styleseat.com/DevynMcArthur

Dermatologist for Acne?

I don’t always post from other blogs but lately I have been hearing so many people talk about their experiences with a Dermatologist for acne. This post was written so well I didn’t think it was necessary to write my own.

Updated 8-31-17  I originally posted this 3 years ago and I still hear the same things from clients. Learning HOW to take care of your skin and using the right products for YOUR skin is what is best. No matter what.

WHY I REGRET GOING TO DERMATOLOGISTS FOR ACNE

It seemed so obvious at the time. My whole family is oily and acne prone. My siblings were both on Accutane. Dermatologists are seen as the first stop for acne problems. It was covered by insurance. After the Proactiv failure, it seemed like the next logical step.

What actually happened was a series of disappointing appointments. In each five to ten minute session, after hours in the waiting room, I was asked what skin care I was using (Blackhead Eliminating Scrub, nothing else), given a few expensive prescriptions, and sent to the pharmacist. When I told them I was getting cystic acne, they didn’t believe me because it was never present at the time of the appointments. I was never asked about my diet. I was never asked about my usual sun exposure, just vaguely told that the medications could make me more sun sensitive. I never had a proper skin analysis. I was never told what my skin type was (combination dry, not oily). I wasn’t asked how often I washed my pillowcase (not enough). I wasn’t asked whether I picked (I do).

At this point, I don’t even remember all of the different expensive medications they gave me over the years. I remember Benzoyl Peroxide, Differen, Tazorac, Retin-A, Cetaphil, and some sort of liquid blotter in a bottle. I know there were more. My skin only got worse when using any of them. I saw no decrease in acne and a sharp increase in redness, peeling, and shininess. I was mocked incessantly about how shiny my face was by the other students in elementary school. They were right- my giant forehead (fivehead) reflected like a mirror and was even more prominent than usual, something I was very self conscious about. .

The shine was a combination of raw skin and product buildup. The top layer of my forehead skin had peeled off early on and never seemed to grow back. I kept using the products, constantly hearing, “It has to get worse before it gets better.” Except it never got better. It got worse and worse and worse. My horrible tendency to pick at the flaking skin did not help at all, and I now have plenty of post inflammatory hyperpigmentation. This wasn’t at all helped by the 30 minutes of sun exposure at prime sun hours during recess every school day and full days on weekends. I was told to “avoid excess sun exposure,” which in my 11 year old brain meant “don’t lay out in the sun” which I didn’t do anyway. They did not make it clear to me that any sun exposure on my glow in the dark complexion was both counterproductive to my acne and would make every inflammation problem I was having far worse. Eventually I stopped using all of the prescriptions and just let them sit in a drawer untouched.

Don’t get me wrong- there are plenty of cases where dermatologists have helped dramatically. There are many that I’m sure do thorough consultations, many who truly help acne and rosacea cases. Accutane was very effective treating the deep cystic acne of my siblings. I have personally told many clients to see a dermatologist for suspicious spots, at least two of which have been diagnosed as skin cancer (basal cell and squamous cell carcinoma). Dermatologists help with diseases and cancer. They are indispensable.

However, as a nurse practitioner puts it, “Their product toolboxes are too small.” Beautification of skin is the entirety of what an Esthetician does. Appointments are generally an hour or more. A good Esthetician will ask in depth questions about a client’s routines, lifestyle, history and issues. Skin care routines will be recommended, adjusted, perfected. Treatments are done not only to beautify the skin but to calm the mind and body. The stress cycle will be explained and discussed. Exfoliation, extractions, and hydrating masks can be done to speed up the improvement of a new skin care routine.

Lauri Shea, LE

Book Online to Come See Me!

Breakdown of a Facial

Interested in getting a facial? Not sure what a facial from me entails? Below is what happens during a regular facial, not a specialty one. I’m breaking it down for you so you can get excited and come in!

1. Let’s talk. I always ask about your skin. What are your concerns and what would you like me to work on. What I see and what you see is not always the same and I want make sure that when you leave, I have addressed YOUR concerns.

2. Cleanse. I use a mild cleanser (steamer is now on) to remove dirt, oil and makeup. This is also when I can access your skin. By look and feel.

3. 2nd Cleanse. I use a stronger cleanser during this step to get the process of lifting dead skin and softening pores started. Sometimes I add a scrub to this step. It depends on what the skin needs.

4. Enzyme. I have a variety to choose from and I make my decision on which one to use based on what you need, want, lifestyle and weather. A stronger enzyme that contains some acids will not necessarily be used during the summer months. They are all effective and help exfoliate the skin. Steamer is turned off after this step.

Blueberry Enzyme
Blueberry Enzyme

5. Ultrasonic Spatula. I apply a gel or toner-type solution to the skin to help loosen the dead skin and using the spatula that is activated by ultrasonic sound waves (28,000 vibrations per second), it lifts the dry skin cells off the skin. At the same time, water is being pushed into the skin which allows the new cells to be hydrated. All you feel is a gentle vibration.

6. Hydrating Serum and Moisturizer. Each step prior has been about softening the skin and exfoliating. Once the steamer is turned off, the skin dries up and the pores goes back to normal. They aren’t changing size, they are just tightening, which makes extractions more difficult and painful. The serum keeps the skin hydrated and the moisturizer locks it in. This is a little secret that makes a tremendous difference! I don’t force extractions either. If they are ready, I will get them.

7. Mask. Since I apply two masks, this one is usually anti-bacterial and calming. Your skin can sometimes get a little red from extractions. This mask will calm it down.

8. 2nd Mask. Hydration. Everyone needs it. I have many different masks to choose from but they are all hydrating. Some brighten, whiten or even help with blemishes. I pick one that best suits your skin. During this mask you will get a light neck and shoulder massage.

9. It’s the end. Boo. 😦 Serum, Moisturizer and SPF. If it’s an evening facial, I will ask if you would like me to apply Grape Seed Oil to your skin instead of moisturizer since that is what I recommend for nighttime.

Depending on your skin and needs, I may add or take away steps. Most of the time I add. 😉

This facial is about you. We can talk as little or as much as you want. First-timers often take advantage and ask me a lot of questions. Some just want peace and quiet. It is your time.

When you leave my treatment room, you will have a glow. There are no signs of being tortured, even if you have acne! 🙂

 

BOOK NOW!

What About Your Neck?

Have you ever thought about giving your neck a facial? Neckial? Necial? Whatever you want to call it. 🙂

It’s cold and that means we are wearing scarves and turtlenecks. The fabric constantly rubbing against your skin can cause a build-up of dry skin. Wool is worst culprit.

images

Well, next time you are exfoliating your face (pm only), make sure you include your neck. Try this great scrub! Looking upward, keeping the skin taut, gently massage the neck for about 1 minute. This area is more delicate than the face so let the scrub do the work.

After, apply serums and grapeseed oil and you’re done!

I have always suggested that whatever you do to your face, you should do to your neck, chest and hands. If you haven’t been, now is the time to start!

Shop Now!