Discussions, topics, research on overal skin care using natural, clean, vegan, cruelty-free, non-toxic, gluten-free, unisex ingredients, DIY concoctions, or treatments.

How Skin Reflects Your Individuality

 

“I think the reward for conformity is that everyone likes you except yourself.”
― Rita Mae Brown

 

One of our most important natural assets that evolution has given us is our skin. Skin protects, insulates, and regulates our body. Each body contains its own genetic and geographic remnants. What your skin looks like reflects your individuality in multiple ways. Sometimes the look is made through choices and some are ingrained.  Either way, let your skin tell the story of who you are.

 

Skin as identifier
Your skin can literally identify who you are. Your fingerprints are unique to you. The thin epidermis layer of skin on your fingers begins to form while still in your mother’s womb. When a baby starts using fingers to touch, the pressure interaction with surfaces starts to form faint “friction ridges.” If burned or cut, fingerprints will grow back over time exactly as they were. Skin elasticity does decrease as we age so fingerprint ridges are less prominent in seniors.

Skin also contains personalized bacterial communities. What we touch leaves an imprint on an object’s surface. Research studies show that skin-associated bacteria can be recovered from surfaces. It can be used to differentiate objects handled by different individuals. Our skin actually leaves a trail of our personal touch.

 

Beauty diversified
At the age of 20 French-American model Maeva Giani Marshall had a stroke and was treated for kidney problems that caused hyperpigmentation on her face. The burn marks from medication faded into dark smudged like freckles. Of her look, she says: “I want to show people that you’re allowed to be different and don’t have to change for anyone.”

When Salem Mitchell posted selfies on her twitter account people made fun of her freckles. But her speckled tawny brown skin and personal confidence grabbed the attention of Ford Models Agency, where she is now signed.

Women of the Middle Ages used ointments, dyes, and cosmetics to hide what they considered skin flaws, including freckles. They wanted pale skin which was associated with high status. This goes to a point art critic Jerry Saltz made recently in his article How to Be an Artist for New York magazine: “Don’t be reined in by other people’s definition of skill or beauty or be boxed in by what is supposedly high or low.”

Birth marks, scars, and skin disease such as vitiligo all tell a story of who you are. Rather than diminishing your look it can enhance by emphasizing your individuality. Consider it a twist on conventional beauty.

 

Skin Color and adaptation
The color of your skin tells its own story of geography and sun exposure. Through the ages skin has adapted to conditions. When humans started walking on two legs in Africa, they lost much of their body hair and their skin increased the number of sweat glands to keep them cool in a hot climate. Their skin produced a lot of melanin to keep skin dark, acting as a natural sunscreen against the sun’s harsh UV rays.

A person’s skin color (melanin found in skin cells) is related to their ancestry and heritage. When humans moved to milder cooler climates where UV rays were less strong, the skin adapted to a paler color to better absorb Vitamin D from sun rays and folic acid. Melanin content varies by gender and age and differs on body parts as well. Consider the palms of your hands and feet.

 

Skin and emotion
Skin blushes, gets goosebumps and regulates temperature according to how we are feeling. Some professional training companies analyze a person’s emotional reactions to situations by reading their skin temperature. Skin may help you to understand your own emotional intelligence. A study on facial thermal response measured skin temperature at the tip of the nose when showing positive, neutral and negative pictures to participants. The skin temperature remained the same when participants were shown the neutral picture but changed to warmer when viewing the positive and cooler when viewing the negative pictures. It seems the skin of your nose knows.

Being one of your most important natural assets, protect and nurture your skin. Let your skin reflect your individuality and prove you’re one of a kind.

(photo: Milena Fotografia/pexels)

Dark Chocolate May Be The Perfect Valentine For Your Skin

Why? Dark chocolate contains lots of healthy antioxidants, iron, calcium and vitamins that nourish your skin. Made from beans harvested from the cocoa tree, delicious dark chocolate contains more than 60 percent of cocoa solids, is low in sugar and made with cocoa butter, a saturated fat not associated with elevating LDL (bad) cholesterol. Valentine’s Day can be made even more special with dark chocolates made from organic or fairly traded cocoa beans. Like skin care products, the benefits reaped are only as good as the ingredients.

For its ability to nourish the body, dark chocolate is included in The Healing Foods Pyramid developed by the Integrative Medicine Department at the University of Michigan. They recommend eating up to 7 ounces a week or 1 ounce per day. Other researchers found that dark chocolate is a richer source of polyphenols and flavanols than fruit juice. Flavonols are clinically proven to help protect skin from sunburn and other damage caused by UV rays. Cocoa can even reduce stress hormones. Less stress means less collagen breakdown and less wrinkles.

You may be wondering whether milk chocolate or white chocolate contain the same benefits. No, they don’t. Because milk binds to antioxidants in chocolate the health benefits are cancelled. So forget the chocolate milk and hot cocoa as a dark chocolate substitute. For the same reason, avoid drinking milk while eating dark chocolate.  White chocolate doesn’t contain cocoa solids so it won’t include the antioxidant benefit either.

If your sweetie doesn’t present you with a box of dark chocolates, you can still order a delicious dessert of fruit dipped in melted dark chocolate after a romantic meal at your favorite restaurant. If you don’t get chocolates or a meal, relax at home with a jar of YASOU hydrating body cream. You’re skin will love it.  (photo of chocolate: Lisa Folios/pexels)

Love and Skin Care: What’s It All About

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To express love you could write a poem, play a heart rendering song, attend a candlelit dinner, pick up roses, or wrap a box of jewelry. However you do it, to love and be loved is a pleasure that supports healthy skin. Plant kisses, offer a massage,  or sit in the back at a romantic movie. Feel-good emotions help reduce stress and build skin cell immunity. Indulge yourself.

 

Love lets you face the world

When your skin looks and feels good you are ready to face the world. Caring for your skin is a way of expressing self love. Healthy skin is one path our bodies and brains use to indicate what’s stirring inside. When you love the skin you’re in, it shows.

 

Let the glow grow

Love can help you get your glow on. A happy, joyful person releases endorphins causing increased blood flow that may manifest as skin glow. Endorphins spread like confetti from your brain when it’s trying to keep pain and stress at bay. Some lovely ways to increase endorphins are to eat, laugh, make love, listen to music, drink, exercise with others and sniff lavender.

 

Love reduces stress

Self-care is important for healthy skin. Desire lights our fire but stress, sadness and anger can cause inflammation that leads to skin disruptions such as acne and rosacea. Happiness and joy reduce inflammation through chemical reactions that include endorphins and neurotransmitters. Stress increases cortisol levels and inhibits enzymes responsible for the healthy production of collagen and elastin.

 

Love is mindful

The nerve endings in skin are continually communicating with the brain. If you or your significant other experience chronic stress or disturbing emotional issues it may show up on the skin. The mind-skin connection was reported years ago in Harvard Health Publications, Women’s Health Watch. Consider the blush, if you question the skin’s ability to decipher emotions.

 

Love makes skin stronger

Positive emotions increase skin cell immunity. Strong skin cells are less prone to infection and quicken the skin’s ability to heal. Skin tells a story of how we cope, love, fear, desire and explore. It shows what we’ve been through and how we choose to live life.

A team of researches from Duke University recently demonstrated how emotions can be “seen” using a functional MRI scan. While fascinating, it’s more wonderful to see joy in real life on the faces and in the arms of our loved ones. Our skin allows us to touch and feel. Nurture your skin with natural moisturizing skin cream and you’ll be ready for all that love has to offer.

Share the love and make it special this Valentine’s Day with YASOU natural skin care.

YASOU Blog Topics For 2019

Happy 2019! We hope you had wonderful holidays. It’s a new year with new goals and ambitions. Here at YASOU Skin Care we are excited and energized to present skin care posts that educate and entertain.  We want to bring you the best and most current topics in natural skin care. We have a lot to talk about! Here are just some of the topics we will cover in this blog during 2019.

Individual Beauty Begins with Your Skin. Whatever you put on it, whatever color it is, nobody’s skin is the same as yours. It’s like a map showing contours, origins, physical and cultural features that reveal the uniqueness of you. Not only where you’ve been, but where you’re going.

Social Media Devas Don’t Look Good All The time. People are taking photos and sharing them on social media 24 hours a day. Those who are confident in who they are and what they look like are posting pics that reflect real life, not magazine covers. Mastering a natural skin care look can rid you of the demand for glamour shots with something more real. When you feel good, you look good.

+MORE.   Take a look at our info graphic for more subjects we plan on talking about this year. Make sure you register for our newsletter so you can stay informed about our newest promotions, events, sales and giveaways. Looking forward to 2019 with you.

YASOU!

Don’t Just Give a Gift, Present It

Estheticians know their customers want change not only in an improved physical appearance but also in their confidence or self-esteem. It’s more than just a look, the feel is important. A face, hands or body become a canvas. A hydrating body cream soothes. A vegan hand cream is pure. Include touch during your gift giving moment. It may be a kiss, hug, handshake or pat on the back. Touch always adds intimacy.  

How can you bring more joy to your gift giving experience? Employ thoughtful aesthetics and authentic gestures to your gift giving moment. We may venture to multiple shops looking for the perfect gift, but how much thought do we give to the moment when a gift is given? This moment could be the beginning of a new tradition or a once only event. The idea is to surprise, engage and intrigue. In other words, don’t just give a gift, present it. Make your gift giving moment memorable. Here are some ideas from professions that rely on aesthetics and authentic gestures to create memorable moments. 

To enhance a diner’s experience chefs know they must prepare a delicious meal, but they also need to present it well. For example, they choose the right size and color of plate to serve the food. They don’t overcrowd the plate or add too many sizes, textures and shapes. These decisions add to the diner’s delight. If your gift has color in it, choose a wrapping paper with a similar or complementary color. Fit the box size to the gift size.  

Designers use their creativity to express ideas in an original way. Composition is key. They look at multiple elements and bring them together. When presenting a gift, design the moment in a way that only you can. What will you be wearing when you give the gift? What scent is in the room? Is music playing? What about the lighting – candles or twinkling tree lights?

Writers know the power of story. When giving a gift offer a short backstory – why you think they would like it, where you got it from, why you want them to have it. Offer a complement that is heart-felt and revealing. It should tell the person something you adore about them while also revealing something about you and your relationship to that person. For example: “Every time you (do whatever), it reminds me of what a special person you are.”

This season YASOU skin care added all of the elements above to create a special skin care gift package that contains a 8oz hydrating body cream aroma free with two hand crafted Lavender, Bergamot bath bombs gift wrapped that we think will be appreciated by all gift givers as well as those receiving your gift. Moments are what make our life beautiful and memorable. Enjoy yours. Happy holidays!

Fall Harvest Ingredients That Enhance Your Skin

Each year growers carefully tend to their crops so we can put food on our table and enjoy many skincare products made with natural ingredients. It’s been a challenging year for growers. In Midwest states, farmers had a late spring planting due to weeks of heavy rain. Floods stripped top soil from fields. Hurricanes hit the East and Gulf states while wildfires burned on the West coast. Still, growers are a resilient lot. Bumper crops, inclement weather, and market competition are forces they face every year. Yet they continue to plant, often generation after generation. When the fall harvest comes, they learn what their toil has brought. Hera are some ways ingredients from the fall harvest act as natural skin enhancers:

  • Collagen stimulators
  • Moisturizers
  • Anti-inflammatories
  • Cell repairers
  • UV ray protectors
  • Circulation boosters
  • Stress relievers
  • Germ killers

The following fall harvest ingredients may be ingested as food and flavor enhancers or applied topically through skin care products such as oils, masks, serums, soaps, scrubs or lotions.

 

Pumpkins

Pumpkins contain vitamins A, C, and E, as well as zinc and essential fatty acids. When eaten or applied topically through oils or masks pumpkin can help ward off signs of aging. Don’t forget the seeds. Nutrition expert Joy Bauer calls pumpkin seeds a “skin superfood.” She describes the zinc found in pumpkin seeds as a natural protector of cell membranes that help maintain collagen and promote skin renewal.

 

Olives

California is the lead grower of olive trees and producer of olive oil in the USA. Certified Organic Extra Virgin oil is full of linoleic acids, oleic acids, palmitic acids and polyphenols, which contain antioxidants. When absorbed into skin, they combat free radicals. Polyphenols also protect against ultraviolet rays and may encourage new cell growth, replacing damaged skin cells. Certified Organic Extra Virgin Olive oil in skin care products is used to soothe and moisturize the skin. Its antioxidants form a protective barrier, trapping moisture on the skin.  YASOU skin care uses certified organic extra virgin olive oil as their main ingredient in there Calityl-O Complex which is in most of the skin care line creams.

 

Apples

Apples contain malic acid, a natural humectant that helps keep skin hydrated. It’s a natural antioxidant with properties that fight free radicals. Mandelic acid reduces discoloration. Most antioxidants are found in the apple peel. Skin care products containing apple extract use it for its toning, exfoliating and rejuvenating benefits.

 

Cranberries

Cranberries contain high amounts of vitamins C, a collagen booster that helps keep skin firm. Natural acids in cranberries act as an exfoliant helping to prevent clogged pores. Its antioxidants are free radical fighters that bring out the glow and suppleness of skin.

 

Nutmeg

Nutmeg comes from evergreen trees in the tropical islands of the East Indies. It is a collagen stimulator and protects against UV rays. Nutmeg oil has antibacterial properties and is believed to boost circulation.

 

Cinnamon

Cinnamon contains antimicrobial properties that may diminish acne. Cinnamon is often used in lip plumping products, masks, oils, powders and of course for flavoring food. Cinnamon extracts have highly potent antioxidant properties. For use on the skin, cinnamon oil should be made from tree leaves, not the bark.

 

Carrots

Beta carotene contained in carrots is an antioxidant that the body converts to vitamin A, which promotes healthy skin cell production. The content of flavonoids in carrots is high in autumn. These phytonutrients areantioxidants with anti-inflammatory and immune system benefits

 

Rosemary

This fragrant herb is used in teas, pure essential oils and as flavoring for food. Rosemary extract is known to tone and firm sagging skin. It helps reduce swelling and puffiness due to its anti-inflammatory properties.

 

Almonds

L’Occitane, a popular French beauty company, is so enthralled with the skin care benefits of almonds that it partners with local almond growers that produce high quality product through sustainable practices in Provence. In addition to high protein, almonds are rich in omega-3 and omegea-6 fatty acids, contain powerful antioxidants and moisturizing properties.

 

Beets

Beets contain a mix of healthy nutrients including folate, fiber, vitamins A and C, manganese, iron, and potassium. They help stimulate cell renewal, guarding against premature aging and wrinkles.

 

Kale

Kale contains a powerful range of antioxidants that work from the inside out. Its own antioxidants help protect the plant from damaging UV rays, and thus help protect our skin. Its high Vitamin C content supports firm, soft skin.

 

Lavender

High grade, quality lavender oil regenerates skin and helps in the healing of cuts and scars. Lavender contains antiseptic and antifungal properties. As a bacteria fighter it helps keep acne at bay.  Lavender essential oil is known to have calming and sedative properties, promoting relaxation and sleep. It can be applied directly on the skin, or as an ingredient in skincare products.

 

Seasons affect the concentration of phytochemicals in plants. Phytochemicals are compounds derived from plants that have biological activity in humans.Fall harvest ingredients are nurtured by the soil and sun under the watchful eye of growers. When you use choose skincare products with natural and organic ingredients you are enhancing your skin and supporting growers who know when crops are ripe and ready to be reaped.

Scary Skin Care Stories

Halloween is around the corner and I’ve been hearing some scary skin care stories. Don’t try to trick your skin, treat it well and avoid mistakes as described in these tales.

Horrifying breakouts from heavy makeup
A friend’s teenage daughter left her Halloween makeup on all night and woke up with a shiny, red, bumpy face. Her mom created a scrub using two teaspoons of baking soda and one teaspoon of water to cleanse and exfoliate her daughter’s skin. Oily, heavy makeup left on the skinmixes with dead skincells to clog pores, trapping bacteriainside and causing acne. Halloween face makeup is usually oil-based, heavier and thicker than every day makeup so don’t get spooked by clogged pores. While makeup may be a safer alternative to wearing a Halloween mask, don’t forget to cleanse well when the witching hour comes.

Bacteria communities
Here’s a creepy, yet healthy discovery made by researchers at the National Human Genome Research Institute. Our skin is crawling with hundreds of kinds of bacteria in moist creases behind our ears and under our neck, to the webs of our toes, the navel and the fold between our eyes. Dry areas of the skin also contain bacteria, but it is less diverse. “Our results underscore that skin is home to vibrant communities of microbial life, which may significantly influence our health,” said researcher Elizabeth A. Grice. Another harmless, but unsettling reality is that microscopic mites graze on oils, skin cells and other microbes on our face.

Face mask mistakes
If you decide to apply a facial mask, make sure your young children are away or asleep. A friend covered her face with a green, organic facial mask to refresh her skin. When her two-year old son saw her, he screamed and ran away in fear of not knowing what had happened to his mother’s face. She had to wash off the expensive mask in order to calm him down.

Skin care products gone bad
After finding an old jar of moisturizer in her bathroom, a woman started using it again only to find her skin inflamed with sensations of burning and irritation. If you notice any change in your product’s texture, color, or smell throw it away. Sunscreen shelf life is about two years. Shampoo lasts for years if you keep the bottle closed. The same holds true for soaps if they remain in their packaging before use. Quality moisturizers and serums can last up to two years. Always apply with clean hands and fingers to avoid spreading infection.

Also, people who neglect or misread skin care product instructions risk skin hazards including discoloration or irritation. It’s always important to read the instructions on how to use all products properly. Harsh ingredients used incorrectly can result in multiple skin nightmares.

Dirty, yucky makeup brushes
Perhaps the most often committed skin sin is not cleaning your makeup brushes. Unwashed makeup brushes can become a breeding ground for dirt and bad bacteria that causes breakouts in the skin.  Rashes, blisters, irritation, clogged pores and other skin ailments can occur when using dirty makeup brushes. A friend who admitted to not cleaning her brushes regularly, saw a small cyst forming on her face. She thought it would go away, but years later the bump remains on her face. Dirt also diminishes the performance of your brushes. What was once blending can appear as streaks making makeup application a hassle.

An unlikely culprit
A pillow case can serve as a great ghost costume or candy collector but while sleepingplacing your face directly on the pillow case causes friction on the skin which can lead to wrinkles and create forehead lines. Facedown sleepers may experience more skin breakouts. That’s because dirt and oil from the pillow and grease from your hair is in contact with the skin. Sleep on your back with your head elevated a bit. Flat sleepers may experience puffy eyes due to fluid buildup. Wash your sheets and pillow cases at least once a week to avoid impurities on your skin. Apply a hydrating body cream. Also, remember to apply a hydrating night cream on your face to moisturize your skin and support your body’s natural night time renewal processes.

Don’t be haunted by these scary skin care stories. Love your skin and these nightmares will turn into sweet dreams.

Skin, The Sense of Touch and More.

 

“A touch isn’t just a touch. It’s a kiss from the soul, onto the skin” . . . .

The words above made me think about how our skin interprets the sense of touch.  It’s mind-boggling if you think deeply into it. One thing I realized is that our skin’s health is so much more than addressing dry skin or aging. It’s deeper than that.

Our skin is the door to feeling touch. How?

RECEPTORS: Your skin has many types of receptors in your body, they are grouped in three categories 1) Thermoreceptors, that do what?  2) Nociceptors, that do what? and 3) Mechanoreceptors, that do what?

Each receptor is a structure that gathers information from the environment. That data is then changed into a signal that can be understood by your nervous system.  The receptors that let the body sense touch are located in the top layers of the skin (the dermis and epidermis). They are small in size and collect super accurate information when touched.  These receptors in the skin allow a person to feel sensations like pressure, pain, temperature and physical change like an object pressing firmly or just brushing against the skin. And of course. . .

Can these receptors transmit emotions and love? Well, there are two touch systems 1) discriminative touch and 2) emotional.  You can do some research to learn more about them if you like. What I have learned from my research is that touch can communicate tenderness, compassion, anger, love, gratitude, happiness and fear within mere seconds. Touch is a fundamental human need from the time we are born and essential for physical, emotional and social health and it all starts with your skin!

The importance of skin health becomes more visible as we age.  When we age our sense of touch starts to deteriorate because our skin is aging.  Aging skin becomes thinner, more fragile, and starts losing the protective fat layer giving an aging person skin disorders such as … Aging can affect the receptors and how they communicate. Our sense of touch, pressure, vibration and temperature control start to diminish.

Taking care of your skin at a younger age can keep it healthier effecting your health and happiness as you age.  Take the time to nurture your skin and celebrate your own sense of touch. Make it a part of your daily regime and lifestyle.

In her poem “A touch isn’t just a touch” Sarah L. Harvey writes about touch:  “It’s the sensation of one’s soul, whispering to one’s fingertips” Think about how touch influences your day.

Are There Good Alcohols in Skin Care?

When I started YASOU skin care I wondered why is there alcohol in skin care products?  I believe we need to understand why alcohol is used in skin care before we can begin discussing the difference between good and bad types of alcohol.

The use of alcohol in skin care products may be that it is used as a solvent (dissolves something or thins out a mixture), emulsifier allows two different substances to blend together), antiseptic (kills bacteria), buffer (balances the pH), stabilizer (prevents separation or unwanted reactions), preservative (minimizes bacterial growth or spoilage), penetration enhancer (improves delivery of an ingredient into skin), or fragrance fixative.

So as you can see alcohol in itself is a versatile ingredient that can perform a range of functions! Today I want to concentrate on the “good” alcohols.  I have included a chart below with our list of “good and “bad” alcohols for you to use as a beginning guide to help you become aware of certain alcohols when reading your skin care labels. The “bad alcohols” for skin care are on this list because they produce dryness, erosion of the surface of the skin (which is really bad for skin), and a strain how the skin replenishes renews and rejuvenates itself.  These alcohols just weaken the skin and can be considered volatile.

The good alcohols are the fatty alcohols, also called wax alcohols. These fatty alcohols are a wax substance which are usually derived from nuts, coconut, and Palm oil (we don’t recommend using products with palm oil due to the sourcing tactics of this ingredient) making them rich in healthy fats that can feed and nourish the skin in combination with other plant based oils.

Fatty alcohols also tend to be 100% non-irritating (please note this doesn’t mean that people with skin sensitivities won’t have allergic reactions to them because everyone has different skin). The function of fatty alcohols is to act as emulsifiers to help bind the oil and water components of a lotion or cream and keep it from separating. They can thicken a formula making it creamy, thick, luscious and rich. The fatty acid content acts as an emollient, assisting with hydration and forming a protective barrier to the skin once a product is applied.

YASOU skin care only uses fatty alcohols that are nut or fruit derived (vegetable).  We have constructed an alcohol informational graphic listing the ingredients to look for in both “good” and/or “bad” alcohols.  These fatty alcohols can be plant or animal, thus this infographic has been created as a general guide for you.  Should you be seeking vegan fatty alcohols, check with the product’s manufacturer to find out if the wax is plant or animal based, gluten free and natural.  I hope you find this informational graphic helpful.  If you are interested in learning more about any ingredients, or if you would like us to address certain skin care topics, please feel free to drop us an email at Terry@yasouskincare.com and let us know what you would like us to cover it.

YASOU!

 

Ingredients for DIY Face Masks

Sometimes I skip face masks mainly because I don’t want to spend any more time on my skin care regime.  If you want to start incorporating them into your daily routine I would look into DIY recipes. I did some research and found some great recipes to pass on to you and will store away for my personal usage as well.

Face and body masks can help tone, tighten, nourish, and hydrate the skin. They can help remove impurities, excess oils and help improve the appearance of your pores making your skin glow.

My research revealed some basic DIY ingredients for face masks for common skin problems.  There’s a few I want to try myself.  Let us know if you decide to try one and what kind of
end-results you experienced. If you have a great one you would like to share with us, we will pass it on.  Email us at terry@yasouskincare.com   When mixing these ingredients use your judgement on what kind of consistency you like.   (Infographic Source: Vitamins Plus & Supplements).