Debunking Skin Myths

It's hard to decipher fact from fiction when it comes to skin care. With an ever-increasing desire to improve the health and appearance of your skin, let's explore some of the most pervasive falsehoods and a few enlightening truths.

Myth No.1

Cucumbers contain special ingredients to treat puffy eyes and under eye bags.
This home remedy is tried, but not true. Cucumber slices may feel refreshing, but they  do not contain special ingredients to reduce under eye bags and puffiness. It's the chilled, high water content found in cucumber that can sometimes decrease puffiness.  Coconut extract and liquid crystals found in Opti Crystal are more effective at replenishing natural reserves and nourishing the skin around the eye area. Eye Genius has a peptide blend and light-reflecting mica to help brighten for a bright-eyed and awake look. It’s formula combats dark circles and puffy eyes as it conditions and repairs delicate eye skin with potent, clinically tested ingredients. These are a much more effective methods for brighter and rejuvenated eyes.

Eye-Genius-CapOn-0.25oz-72dpi934x934Opti-Crystal-CapOn-0.25oz-72dpi934x934

Myth No.2

A good cleanser should foam on the skin.
Many of us have been taught that if your cleanser foams it’s working. Not only is this false, but it is hazardous to your skin. For example, sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS) is a highly effective foaming agent €” chemically known as a surfactant €” that is found in 90 percent of all commercial soaps and shampoos. Due to its abrasive chemical makeup, SLS is also found in floor cleaners, laundry detergents and engine degreasers. This is why COSMEDIX excludes this ingredient from our products. Although our cleaners may not foam up like you expect, they are very effective in cleansing your skin.

Try Purity Clean, Benefit Clean or Purity Solution instead.

Myth No. 3

Sunscreen is not required during the winter.
A cold, overcast day is not the nature's sunscreen. Approximately 30 to 40 percent of UV rays will penetrate through clouds €” no matter the season €”  leaving your skin vulnerable to the damaging effects of sun exposure including sunburn, unsightly wrinkles and more serious health concerns. In the winter, snow can reflect up to 85 percent of the UV radiation that reaches it, which means we are still exposed during this time of year. Furthermore, powerful UVA rays can easily penetrate through windows. So, remember to apply an SPF even if you are staying inside.

Try Reflect, Peptide-Rich Defense and Hydrate +.

Myth No.4

The best way to deal with oily skin is to dry it out.
Oily skin is a sign of dehydrated skin. Oily skin needs moisture. Hydration helps calm, soothe and support the dermal matrix that keeps skin supple and helps to maintain a proper pH balance. Attempting to dry out your complexion will strip the epidermis of its natural, vital oils and will lead to rough, flaky skin, clogged pores and inflammation. Instead of washing your face with harsh ingredients, wash with a mild, exfoliating cleanser to slough off dead skin cells without over-drying such as Purity Clean or Benefit Clean. Remember, the goal is to bring balance to the skin, not to strip it away.

Saving Face

The exfoliation we receive from peels not only corrects a multitude of skin conditions €” such as sun damage, pigmentation and acne €” it also creates the perfect environment for optimal product penetration. Because it increases cell turnover and sheds the skin’s outer layer, it allows products to penetrate deeper for better results.

So, now that you’ve received your COSMEDIX metabolic peel, how do you protect your investment?

SavingFace_Body

Here are a few simple steps you can take to help keep that renewed glow, protect your investment and infuse your skin with nutrients and supportive ingredients for optimal skin health. Your skin care professional can also provide a custom post-peel regimen.

  • Incorporate a gentle cleanser, such as COSMEDIX Benefit Clean, into your regimen to remove makeup and prepare the skin to receive vital nutrients.
  • Antioxidants are a must for daily post-peel recovery to help against further UVA/UVB-induced photodamage. Affirm by COSMEDIX boasts over 10 different skin-specific antioxidants for maximum skin health and protection.
  • Sun protection is a must. COSMEDIX offers a broad range of sunscreens to ensure your post-peel results last.
  • Give your skin the benefits of post-peel vitamin A therapy with products containing COSMEDIX's encapsulated retinol. The ultimate post-peel addition to your skin care routine, you can begin using encapsulated retinol products just a week after receiving your peel.
  • In between peels, apply COSMEDIX's Pure Enzymes mask weekly to keep your skin silky smooth and boost your peel results at home.
  • If your skin is acneic, you may also apply COSMEDIX Clear Mask to keep congestion and breakouts at bay.

Remember, your skincare regimen is the foundation for everything else you do to enhance your skin. Each day, the choices we make and the products we apply to our skin can be the difference between enhancing and diminishing our results. Post peel, the goal is to continue reaping the benefits of the peel. Your skin care professional will provide a custom post-peel regimen based on your goals.

Prime Time to Peel

There are so many reasons to put your best face forward and there’s never been a better time than now to consider a COSMEDIX treatment.

PrimeToPeel_Body

What is a Peel?
The ultimate goal of any peel is the removal of the skin's outer layer of primarily dead cells and the stimulation of collagen and elastin to tighten and firm the healthy layer beneath. When performed properly, this procedure can effectively diminish the appearance of wrinkles, age spots, blemishes and more with little to no trauma to healthy skin cells.

The key to a successful treatment lies in the peel's contents. Using botanical, chirally correct ingredients, COSMEDIX peels work with the skin to prompt the renewal process. With COSMEDIX peels, there is a mild sloughing of the skin. This process €”known as metabolic peeling €” achieves dramatic results without the irritation and consequent recovery time of a traditional chemical peel.

Is a Peel Right for Me?
Whether you're looking to correct a specific skin concern, defy your age or simply refresh your complexion, a COSMEDIX peel can be customized to fit your needs. Before you schedule an appointment, your skin care professional will assess your skin to see which peel is right for you and your goals. Peels can vary in intensity such as a superficial peel like Pomegranate Peel to deep epidermal exfoliation of Purity Peel to a mid-depth dermal peel like Timeless Peel. By identifying certain key traits €” such as skin density and natural hydration €” your physician or aesthetician can better determine the appropriate peel type, depth and duration for your skin.

PrimeToPeel_Body2

When should I get a peel?
While peels are not contradictory in the summer, they are not recommended for all clients due to lifestyle choices that often include increased sun exposure. After a thorough consultation and thorough skin analysis, your aesthetician will determine what the best treatment options are for your skin. Generally speaking, clients who spend significant time outdoors during the summer months are recommended to refrain from medium-depth peels like Timeless Peel or Deep Sea Peel until fall and instead go for a COSMEDIX facial or treatment.

What Are the Possible Side Effects?
While the side effects of traditional peels can range from minor discomfort and inflammation to post-peel pigmentation and increased skin sensitivity, COSMEDIX peels minimize such reactions through advanced ingredient technology. In addition to using chirally correct, plant-based ingredients, COSMEDIX peels contain exclusive, state-of-the-art compounds including encapsulated Retinol, which are designed to affect change with minimum irritation.

Do I Need to Prep Before a Peel?
Depending on the type of peel and your skin care provider's recommendations based on your skin assessment, pre-peel prep may or may not be required. While your physician or aesthetician may suggest additional steps based on individual needs, these gentle yet effective peels can often be applied at your convenience to help correct blemishing, skin discoloration, hypersensitivity and mild photodamage without prep. Medium-depth dermal peels such as Timeless Peel or Deep Sea Peel require a minimum ten-day, at home, pre-peel regimen. These peels are specifically designed to minimize the signs of aging.

What treatments can I receive during the summer months? Will my pre-treatment prep be different?
As a rule of thumb, clients who are appropriate candidates for peels during the summer months will prep longer, use a skin brightener like COSMEDIX’s Simply Brilliant serum to help surpress melanocyte activity and be advised to regularly apply a broad spectrum sunscreen like Peptide-Rich Defense to protect the skin from the elements. For those who are not candidates for a medium-depth peel, there are many treatments that are safe and appropriate for summer use. We recommend COSMEDIX’s Pomegranate Exfoliator and Blueberry Smoothie treatments, which are designed to refresh and exfoliate the skin without prior preparation.

What Can I Expect After My Peel?
Post-peel recovery has typically been one of the treatment's biggest drawbacks. Before such breakthroughs as chiral correction and metabolic peeling, a particularly unforgiving peel might mean spending weeks in a vulnerable, post-operative state. However, thanks to advancements in peel technology, you can now enjoy your rejuvenated skin sooner. COSMEDIX peels have virtually no down time. Our age-defying peels only average a week of recovery time.

Once a peel treatment is applied to the skin, it penetrates to the desired level and begins to stimulate and induce collagen, elastin and glycosaminoglycans. The treatment will normalize the skin, regulate oil production and diminish free radical activity. After a superficial peel, you may experience micro-flaking. With the deeper peels, you will undergo a layered flake that can last two to three days. Most patients will see immediate results following their peel, such as improved texture, clarity of the skin and diminished fine lines.

Get to Know COSMEDIX

In the mid 1990s, professional skin care offered few corrective options capable of safely transforming the skin’s appearance without harsh irritation. While natural products smelled wonderful, they lacked the power to treat serious concerns. Meanwhile, cosmeceutical products that could produce results often did so by damaging the skin, leaving potentially long-term consequences.

Get-to-know-Cosmedix-Body934x934_2Get-to-know-Cosmedix-Body934x934

Unsatisfied with skin care products, a group of forward-thinking aestheticians, physicians and chemists came together with one goal in mind: to create a skin care line capable of delivering visible results with botanical ingredients and reduced irritation. However, they soon discovered why no such formulas existed. The chemistry needed was far more complex than most formulators could handle. Highly purified, plant-based ingredients were expensive, hard to come by and nearly impossible to stabilize.

Unwilling to give up, the group continued to invest into what would become one of the most complex and effective professional skin care lines in the industry: COSMEDIX. Their one-of-a-kind formulas answered significant technical challenges by focusing on four core pillars:

  • chiral correction
  • better botanicals
  • exfoliation
  • skin matrix support

What is chiral correction?

COSMEDIX uses a pharmaceutical-grade purification process known as chiral correction to select only the molecular form of an ingredient that benefits the skin. This process produces formulas designed for optimal efficacy and safety.

Why botanical ingredients?

Combining the very best of science and nature including plant-based actives, all-natural colors and pure essential oils COSMEDIX formulas deliver powerful results with reduced irritation. However, what is omitted from a formula is often just as important as what’s included. In addition to being the industry’s leader in plant-based skin care, COSMEDIX stands apart by using no animal byproducts, parabens, chemical fragrances or artificial dyes.

Why is exfoliation important?

Exfoliation is the key to optimal penetration and efficacy. Exfoliants work by sloughing away the rough outer layer so that ingredients like retinoids and growth factors are able to better penetrate the skin and trigger cellular renewal. Proper exfoliation, however, is a fine balance. Overly aggressive actives, like Benzoyl Peroxide and Glycolic Acid, can cause unnecessary inflammation. Instead of these harsh ingredients, COSMEDIX uses naturally occurring Alpha and Beta Hydroxy Acids (AHAs and BHAs), Protease Enzymes and Retinoids to stimulate turnover without causing excessive damage or discomfort.

What is skin matrix support?

To effectively fight the signs of aging, a skincare regimen must support the skin on three levels: the cell, the cell membrane and the extracellular matrix. Oxidative stress, DNA damage, mitochondrial burnout, glycation and inflammation can deteriorate the skin’s structure and break down cellular defenses at each level, so products that support optimal performance and regeneration is critical. Combining pure, nature-based ingredients with perfect chemistry, COSMEDIX consistently delivers noticeably smoother, softer, younger-looking skin without the long-term complications.

 

Free Radicals: The Invisible Enemy

Any time skin professionals talk about environmental damage the discussion inevitably turns to free radicals molecules that have lost an electron by interacting with oxygen. In the body, these free radicals can wreak havoc upon living cells, stealing their electrons and causing oxidative stress. Scientists have linked this stress to a litany of adverse health effects including skin aging.

Free radicals have their roots in a variety of sources. However, the most common culprit in free radical damage is the sun. When the skin is overwhelmed by UV rays, emerging free radicals can lead to a breakdown in collagen and elastin connective fibers that provide the skin its firmness and suppleness. The result often takes the form of lines, wrinkles, roughness and sagging skin.

FreeRadical_Body_934x934_2

Antioxidants to the Rescue
Antioxidants are the heroes that come to your skin's defense. Produced by the body and obtained from food, antioxidants seek out the volatile molecules, sacrificing one of their own electrons to neutralize the threat of oxidative damage. Antioxidant products help to fill the gap to help protect the skin from the free radicals it faces every day.

Not All Antioxidants are Created Equal
Antioxidant products are only as effective as their chief ingredients. Because individual antioxidants function in different ways, products that contain only a handful of common or non-skin-specific antioxidants may still leave the skin open to harm. However, by combining multiple skin-specific antioxidants, users can give their skin maximum free radical protection. COSMEDIX products like Affirm and COSMEDIX ELITE's Pepoxide delivers a cocktail of targeted ingredients designed to minimize the appearance of existing damage and counteract daily threats to ensure a more radiant, youthful tomorrow.

Do Epidermal Growth Factors Really Make Your Skin Look Younger?

Do Epidermal Growth Factors Really Make Your Skin Look Younger?

Epidermal growth factor (EGF) is a naturally occurring polypeptide (small proteins) that stimulates significant cellular growth and proliferation. By switching on fibroblasts, cells responsible for supporting the skin matrix, EFGs stimulate collagen production, helping to dramatically improve skin density and elasticity. When applied to treated skin, the prolific proteins help repair cellular damage and encourage the appearance of fresh, healthy cells.

How it Works

EGF works by binding to specific epidermal growth factor receptors (EGFR) on a cell, where it initiates cellular DNA replication and, consequently, cell division and proliferation. Produced naturally by the body, EGF can also be synthesized from a variety of natural sources, including plant extracts and yeast. Because skin cells naturally recognize EGF, their interaction with the ingredient is flawless.  Originally used to speed wound recovery, EGF's discovery won researcher Dr. Stanley Cohen and his collaborators a Nobel Prize in 1986. A patent for cosmetic use followed three years later.

Speeding Up Recovery and Rebooting Aging Skin

Because all resurfacing treatments (i.e. peels, laser rejuvenation, microdermabrasions) damage the skin to some degree to achieve results, recovery has typically been a drawback of professional resurfacing treatments. The thought of spending days €” sometimes weeks €” in a vulnerable, post-operative state has inspired fear in many. However powerful EGFs accelerate the recovery process to bridge the gap between being a before and an after. It is critical to incorporate EGFs products, like COSMEDIX’s Cell ID Serum, into any post resurfacing treatment regimen because directly stimulating the more rapid release of skin cells (resurfacing) without directly stimulating the rapid replacement of these cells will cause immune stress. By applying EGF products to resurfaced skin, the window of new cell vulnerability €” and post-procedure recovery time as a whole €” is abbreviated.

In addition to its recovery function, EGFs are a key player in the fight against premature aging. While we have EGFs in our skin, our natural supply diminishes with age and exposure to ultraviolet light. Unable to refresh itself at a healthy, youthful rate, the skin accumulates dead surface cells and starts to show visible signs of aging €” most notably dullness, roughness and prolonged healing time. By topically adding EGFs, a more youthful rate of renewal is achieved.

The Truth About Photodamage In Less Than 1,000 Words

Cosmedix - The Truth About Photodamage In Less Than 1,000 Words

Photodamage, commonly known as sun damage, occurs when the skin is overwhelmed by ultraviolet (UV) rays, resulting in scar tissue buildup and dermal thinning. The changes that the body incurs, however, are not evident on the skin’s surface until years later. As skin ages, visible effects of photodamage appear as fine lines, wrinkles and age spots. Treating photodamage is a process that requires a long-term management program including lifestyle changes, stress reduction and improved nutrition.

Neglecting to shield sun-sensitive skin from harmful UV rays can easily exacerbate photodamage and counteract any progress made with resurfacing and restorative products. To ensure enduring results, a broad spectrum UVA/UVB sunscreen should be applied daily for maximum defense, like Peptide-Rich Defense with SPF 50.

The skin is already under attack from inflammation caused by dietary and environmental stress. Damaged skin is even more susceptible to free radical assaults. Hence, photodamage treatment requires a specialized support system. Serums, masks and cleansers containing reparative ingredients like vitamin C, antioxidants, enzymes, peptides and growth factors provide indirect support to the skin by helping to increase cellular turnover, inhibit melanin production and reduce inflammation.

Chirally-correct skin care with ingredients such as tyrosinase inhibitors, antioxidants, pepoxide and encapsulated retinol are extremely effective for driving results. Naturally, that program begins with rebuilding the skin. Only after the layers of dead skin are removed can fresh, new skin cells thrive. But because photodamage-afflicted skin is highly sensitive, promoting healthy change is crucial. Professional metabolic peels, such as those offered by COSMEDIX professional skincare, are designed to gently stimulate fibroblasts €” skin-rejuvenating collagen and elastin fibers €” without the irritation and excessive peeling of traditional chemical peel treatments.

 

The Five A Approach To Better Skincare

Cosmedix - The Five A Approach To Better Skincare

Like it or loathe it, all of us want fresh, firm, clear and evenly toned skin, regardless of age or skin color. What it represents is perfect harmony€”skin that is well-nourished, well-protected and balanced inside and out. This is skin that’s never seen a blemish, is uniformly pigmented from head to toe and ages a little past its youthful carefree years where proper skin care was an afterthought. For the majority of us, the pursuit of skin perfection is a lifelong struggle. Beautiful skin is readily achieved by focusing on the skin’s most basic needs. Recognizing four skin-specific requirements €” fats, proteins, antioxidants and stimulants €” COSMEDIX emphasizes the importance of internal and external nourishment.

The Five “A” Approach

COSMEDIX takes a five “A” approach to fulfilling the skin’s needs. There are five categories of active ingredients used to treat common skin problems: acids (hydroxy and antimicrobial), vitamin A, amino acids, antioxidants and ascorbic acid. Ingredients in each category are designated according to their principle action

Acids

The primary role of acids is exfoliation. Comprised of alpha, beta and poly hydroxy acids and microbials, common examples include salicylic and lactic acid. These ingredients help the skin shed its outer layer of dead cells, known as the stratum corneum, at a more accelerated rate by dissolving the adhesive links, known as desmosomes, between surface cells called corneocytes. By sloughing away corneocytes, acids reveal the fresher, younger looking skin directly beneath the surface.

 Vitamin A

Vitamin A stimulates cell turnover. COSMEDIX combines retinol €” a form of vitamin A €” in a arabino-galactan-protein (AGP) complex made from wine grapes to enhance the rate of turnover while eliminating the ingredient’s trademark irritation. As healthy, new skin cells appear, unsightly lines, wrinkles and surface roughness fade from sight. The result is a smoother, suppler, noticeably younger-looking complexion.

Amino Acids

Peptides and growth factors usually come to mind when discussing amino acids. As the building blocks of these and other proteins, amino acids primarily aid in cell repair and skin matrix support. Assisting in wound healing, surface remodeling and collagen production, these ingredients help sustain the skin’s extracellular structure. While the body produces its own supply of these key substances, its output dwindles with age. As a result, the skin starts to sag and lose form. By reintroducing such substances topically, we can supplement our internal deficiency and help restore firmness and elasticity to the skin.

Antioxidants

Antioxidants are skin protectors. Antioxidants scour the body in search of volatile, cell-crippling agents from UV rays, urban pollution and environmental factors. Free radicals cause the degeneration often associated with sun damage and premature aging. Antioxidants, however, intervene in the process, sacrificing themselves to neutralize the free radical threat and, literally, save face.

Ascorbic Acid

Commonly known as vitamin C, ascorbic acid is among nature’s most potent antioxidants. Offering powerful protection against UV-induced free radicals, it encourages healthy wound healing and helps suppress cutaneous pigmentation. It also assists in the manufacturing of collagen, improving skin elasticity and reducing the look of lines and wrinkles.

SKINCARE 101: What is Chirality?

Cosmedix - SKINCARE 101: What is Chirality?

Let's start with a quick analogy: People are either right-handed or left-handed. Right-handed people work better with their right hand, while left-handed people work better with their left hand. Very few people are ambidextrous, working equally well with their right or left hand.

Here is how hands work on the molecular level: all organic materials must contain carbon atoms, and each carbon atom has four hands arranged in a three-dimensional manner. Two hands are on the sides, one is in the front and one is in the back. Each hand must be connected to another hand. If at least two elements attached to any single carbon atom are identical or right-handed, these organic materials are called chiral. If none of the elements attached to any single carbon atom are identical or left-handed, the organic materials are called chiral. Chiral molecules exist everywhere. Sugars, carbohydrates, hydroxy acids, amino acids and proteins have similar configurations. Your own DNA is chiral €” as are your hormones, enzymes and the structural components of tissue, blood, hair and skin.

Just like people, these right-sided or left-sided natural ingredients often perform differently. A left-handed ingredient (L) can have a greater skin wrinkle reduction benefit than a right-handed ingredient (R) €” ascorbic acid or vitamin C is a prime example. A recent study has shown that D- and L-forms of ascorbic acid have different affinity for the enzyme Tyrosinase, which catalyzes the production of melanin and other pigments. The skin brightening results of L-ascorbic acid and D-ascorbic acid are vastly different. When both forms are together, D-ascorbic acid can reverse this beneficial effects of L-ascorbic acid. The use of the pure 100% L form in such cases is essential.

At COSMEDIX, we use chirally-correct ingredients, meaning our formulas have been filtered to contain only molecules that positively interact with the skin. The result? Less irritation and more concentrated formulas capable of real change.