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Anatomy of a Facial

A facial is a procedure involving a variety of skin treatments, including: steam, exfoliation, extraction, creams, lotions, facial masks, peels, and massage.  Facials can last anywhere from 30 minutes to over an hour and range in price depending on the types of products used for the treatments.  They are professionally recommended every 4 weeks for maximum results. Step 1: See a Professional. All facials follow the same basic structure and order. They will begin with makeup removal and cleansing.  Then comes some method of exfoliation to remove dead skin cells and smooth the surface of the skin. A massage is then performed that can include all or some of...

That's NOT Botox.

Another strong misunderstanding a lot of people have around the Boston Area is what products go where Botox does not.   If it's caused by gravity:  THAT'S NOT BOTOX! HYALURONIC ACID (HA) FILLERS (TEMPORARY) Hyaluronic acid fillers are synthetic sugars that attract water molecules.  They are placed in actual wrinkles or other areas that need volume and offer instant results. They fill in marionette lines, lift up jowls or plump up volume along the jaw line where definition has been lost. Restylane, Perlane and Juvéderm (www.juvederm.com) are the most commonly used hyaluronic acid fillers, with Juvéderm being the leading product (I refer to Restylane as 'old school').  There is no need...

A Wrinkle In Time–My Botox Lines

While I'm waiting for a few experts to help edit some skin-care specific entries, I thought it's about time to introduce my favorite pharmaceutical--Botox Cosmetic.  One in four women over the age of 30 is interested in learning more about Botox, so you are not alone!!!  Not only am I user of Botox, but I am also the President (of it's fan club), and a provider of this fountain of youth!  I consider myself an expert of injection techniques, the product's history and safety information. Isn't it Botulism: No!  Botox, or onobotulonium toxin, is a protein produced by the bacterium Clostridium botulinum and is considered a powerful neurotoxin.  When...

Hydrating Ingredients in Skin Care Products

It's getting cold out and like I said 'Tis the Season for Chemical Peels!  Both of these things necessitate hydrating products for your skin.  Here's a list of ingredients your cosmeceutical/pharmaceutical skin care products should have in them! Alpha Lipoic Acid - a powerful antioxidant that destroys free-radicals before they can destroy cells.  Alpha Lipoic Acid also enhances the potency of Vitamin C and E.  It occurs naturally in green, leafy vegetables. Lactic Acid - A multi-purpose ingredient used as a preservative, exfoliant, and moisturizer, and to provide acidity to a formulation.  In the body, lactic acid is found in the blood and muscle tissue as a product of the metabolism of...

'Tis the Season for Chemical Peels!

When the summer is over, and you will not be out in the sun anymore (which you shouldn't be doing ANYWAYS) it's time to have a good chemical peel with your aesthetician.  The reason you don't want to do this in the summer is that depending on the strength of the peel, the top layer of skin will flake off and left your epidermis unprotected from the sun. Chemical peels come in different strengths.  You might not necessarily peel, or you might peel--a lot.  Make sure you tell your aesthetician your desired level of peeling.  I wish I had pictures of the peels I've had.  I've had a...

Physical Facial Changes That Occur As We Age

Women often ask me to look at their face and tell them what I see as signs of aging.  I love loaded questions!  Many women don't know what exactly it is that makes them look older, they just know they see age on their faces in the mirror.  Almost 90% of aging is due to sun damage.  So please start wearing sunblock everyday! (It makes a great base for mineral make-up, or if you like make-up free, get a tinted moisturizer with SPF).  Coming blogs will explain what to do about these factors! These changes are sequential and predictable! Starting at 25...

A Youthful Appearance

This being my area of expertise, it's hard to know where to start, but first and foremost, I consider myself a bio-dork, so I'll start there! Biology of Youth-Universal The biological purpose of reproduction creates attraction to a youthful appearance by both men and women. Researches have found the female perception of beauty changes throughout the month (just like us woman to change our minds!).  Women typically prefer a mature, masculine looking man.  These characteristics include a heart-shaped face and small chin with full lips. During menstruation, however, woman are typically more attracted to softer, more youthful features.  These include a small nose, large eyes, and defined cheekbones (which males find...

Clear, Smooth, Even Skin

The conditions involving skin clarity can be broken into the following physiological categories: Environmentally Damaged Skin Environmentally damaged skin results from a history of overexposure to environmental elements.  The sun is responsible for 80% of aging!  Fibers that maintain the skin’s structure and elasticity (collagen and elastin) break down and slowly diminish, resulting in fine lines, wrinkles, and loose, sagging skin.  UV light can damage the DNA in the skin cells which can lead to different forms of skin cancer. Other environmental factors include: Harsh weather conditions which destroy the skins moisture barrier resulting in rough, dry, uneven skin tone and texture). Cigarette smoke results in free radicals which break down collagen...

Beauty Defined

What makes a person beautiful? It is a combination of inner beauty (psychological factors) and outer beauty (physical attractiveness).  Beauty is defined with individual, cultural and universal standards which every single person desires to achieve. Universally Beautiful Throughout time and across cultures, there are several characteristics of physical attractiveness.  Boston or not, beauty is: Symmetry proportion and layout among facial features (Proportion: The Rule of Thirds and Fifths) well aligned appearance on profile Clear, Smooth, Even Skin A Youthful Appearance. Boston Culture Although we are ranked as one of the countries most intelligent cities, we don't fare so well in the areas of physical attractiveness (or friendliness for that matter!).  It's 2011 Boston!  You can be both...