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True Radical Honesty From Our Community

  • The Ultimate Skincare Routine For Adult Acne
    Adult acne might feel and look the same as teenage acne but when it comes to nailing an effective, breakout-busting skincare routine, it’s a whole different beast.

    As if fine lines, wrinkles and all the other signs of skin aging weren’t enough to contend with, there’s also that crazy little thing called adult acne. Acne ‘should’ be something that you say farewell to as you come to the end of your adolescent years and your hormones settle into adulthood. But that’s not always the case. In fact, adult acne is on the increase and it’s estimated to affect more and more adults as they hit their 50s and older.

    What Is Adult Acne?

    Acne vlugaris, the proper name for the type of acne we’re dealing with here, is exactly the same at any age. It rears its head when your hair follicles and pores become blocked with excess oil and dead skin cells. Unlike regular teenage acne, however, the adult kind can be split into two different types: persistent acne and late- or adult-onset acne. Persistent acne continues from adolescence, never really giving you a break, whereas late-onset acne is the stuff that appears for the first time later on in life. Just when you thought you’d gotten away with it. Dang!

    This all sounds pretty simple, but things get a little more complicated from here on in. How so? Because acne can take on many forms. If the plug bulges out above the surface of your skin it creates a whitehead, for example. If the plug opens up, it oxidizes with the air, turns dark and creates a blackhead. And if bacteria gets involved and infects the blockage? Then it becomes a full blown zit – a papule, pustule, nodule or cyst, if you will.

    So, Why Do Some People Get Adult Acne While Others Don’t?

    As a rule, acne is genetic, so if you’re predisposed, thanks to your parents, there’s not much you can do about that. What you can do, however, is to understand what’s triggering these breakouts later in life – hint: more often than not, it’s your hormones. During menopause, for example, your hormones are all over the place and if you’re sensitive to these triggers, this creates an imbalance that causes sebum production to go wild and your your skin to completely freak out.

    Emotional stress and certain medications can also overstimulate your sebaceous glands, as can pore-blocking or harsh ingredients in your skincare regime.

    On that note, here’s how to create a kick-ass skincare routine that cares for your adult skin (aka doesn’t dry it out!) and helps to balance oil production to keep breakouts to a minimum.

    The Best Morning Skincare Routine For Adult Acne

    1. Gently Cleanse Your Face

    For some, a morning cleanse can seem a little OTT when all you’ve done is sleep since your last cleanse. Not so for you. Because your skin is oilier than most you’re going to want to gently remove any sebum that may have built up overnight. Also, your night cream might feel kind of heavy for daywear, so it’s good to start with a clean slate in the AM.

    One word of warning: don’t fall into the trap of grabbing the most skin-stripping cleanser you can find. You can just about get away with that when you’re 13 – although it’s never ideal – but when your skin is more mature it’s going to need way more care. Choose something that will help replenish your barrier function, soothe and calm inflammation and cut out any risk of over-cleansing your skin. A product like our Soothing Cleansing Milk is great for morning use.

    2. Balance Your Skin With Tea Tree Oil

    As you know, we’re massive fans of face serums for targeting skin issues exactly where they’re needed, and when it comes to adult acne, our favorite topical ingredient is tea tree oil.

    Unlike other acne-busting favorites like benzoyl peroxide, tea tree oil is less drying and irritating on the skin which makes it a great choice for mature skin. But don’t think that means it’s any less effective because its antifungal, anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties combine to give it true superpowers in the fight against bacteria and acne breakouts.

    Try applying our Tea Tree Super Serum+  two or three times a week after cleansing and before moisturizing to help balance and calm your skin. We like to alternate it with Niacinamide (B3) Facial Serum which is another winner for regulating oil and reducing inflammation.

    3. Lightly Moisturize

    Moisturizing oily, acne-prone skin might seem counterintuitive but it’s actually crucial for keeping your barrier function healthy and keeping sebum under control. If you miss this step, your sebaceous glands will think your skin is dry and thus overcompensate with more oil.

    Avoid thick creams that are jam-packed with heavy occlusives like cocoa butter, however – these will block your pores and cause no end of problems. Instead, stick with light gel or lotion formulas that incorporate hydrating ingredients like glycerin, aloe and hyaluronic acid. Our Firming Collagen Day Lotion is great for oily skin, plus it helps tackle the visible signs of aging at the same time. Result.

    4. Apply Sunscreen

    UV radiation will make acne (and any potential scarring) worse. Not to mention all the other dastardly deeds it gets up to as the sun beats down on your skin on a daily basis.

    Wear sunscreen every day, without fail, and always choose a broad-spectrum formula with SPF 30 or above. And if you really can’t bear the thought of applying moisturizer AND sunscreen? Try our SPF 20 Mineral Sunscreen with Vitamin C. It’s packed with hydrating and moisturizing ingredients which are probably just right for your oily skin.

    The Best Nighttime Skincare Routine For Adult Acne

    1. Remove Makeup & Cleanse Your Face

    Before bed is when a more thorough (but still not too full-on) cleanse comes into play. Your evening cleanse is way more important than the morning one because this is when your skin has been subjected to at least 15 hours worth of makeup, sunscreen, dirt, oil and pollution. And if you don’t whisk that away it can, and will, build up on your skin where it will combine with dead skin cells and sit in your pores waiting for the worst to happen.

    We recommend our Charcoal Clarifying Cleanser or Tea Tree Super Cleanser+ which both work hard to whisk away debris from the surface of your skin while balancing, detoxifying and refreshing your complexion.

    You should also exfoliate once or twice a week to gently boost cellular turnover and minimize any risk of dead skin cells hanging around for too long. Try our Vitamin C Gentle Face Scrub after cleansing.

    2. Treat Your Skin With Retinol

    Retinol might be the gold standard of aging treatments, but it’s also right up there in the fight against adult acne. A derivative of vitamin A, retinol helps to increase cell turnover. It’s a little bit like exfoliation, although it works in a very different way. Instead of removing dead skin cells at a surface level, retinol goes deeper into the skin and activates certain genes to accelerate cell turnover down below. It’s very clever and a great way to keep dead skin cells moving along so they don’t clog up your pores. This is music to the ears of mature, acne-prone skin – especially when you add in all the other age-defying benefits retinol brings to the table.

    Just remember, retinol is very powerful, so start slowly by applying Retinol Facial Serum just once or twice a week to clean, dry skin. Then, as you build tolerance, you can build up to every night.

    3. Hydrate & Moisturize

    Allow your serum to sink in for a minute or two, then finish with moisturizer. Of course, you can double up with the same product you used in the morning, but you might find your skin needs a little more moisturization at night.

    /Size-2 Fl Oz

    Our fabulous Retinol Moisturizer is a great product to apply before bed as it combines retinol with hydrating hyaluronic acid, soothing vitamin E and plumping panthenol. If the combination of this and the retinol serum is too much for your skin, however, try our Longevity duo: Rejuvenating Longevity Serum followed by Renewing Longevity Moisturizing Cream. Both of these formulations are incredible for aging skin that gets a little, shall we say, problematic. They harness the powers of bakuchiol, which is nature’s kinder alternative to retinol.

    Acne
    The Ultimate Skincare Routine For Adult Acne
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  • DYK, Not All Dark Spots Are Created The Same?
    We love to blame the sun for most of our skin woes, but is it entirely at fault when it comes to pesky dark spots? Actually, no. The sun is a major factor, for sure, but there are many other reasons your skin becomes patchy or discolored…

    No matter how hard you try to keep the tone of your skin free of patchy dark spots as you get older, this seems to be one skincare battle you just can’t seem to win. But what are dark spots and why, oh why, do they creep up on the skin when we have enough skin issues to contend with (yes, we’re talking to you fine lines and wrinkles)?

    What Causes Dark Spots?

    Dark spots, aka hyperpigmentation, is extremely common and occurs when your skin overproduces melanin, the pigment the gives your skin its natural color. This makes certain areas of your skin appear darker and patchy, while others remain as they were. And it really is as simple as that.

    The tricky part, however, comes when you try to pinpoint exactly why melanin has gotten out of control in the first place. And there are three main causes of hyperpigmentation to know about.

    The Sun

    According to countless studies, exposure to the sun is the most common cause of hyperpigmentation. No surprises there, right? This is because melanin acts like a kind of natural sunscreen to help protect your skin from damaging UV radiation. The more you subject your skin to sunlight, therefore, the more melanin your melanocytes will produce as they work super hard to keep your skin safe.

    Tan skin is basically the result of melanin going into overdrive. And when you continue to subject your skin to excessive sun exposure, this whole process can (and often will!) go completely wayward. This leads to an uneven production of melanin which gets clumpy and, of course, leads to the inevitable patchy, sun-damaged skin.

    These types of dark spots are called solar lentigines and they usually appear on areas that are most frequently exposed to the sun. Your face, hands, arms and shoulders are those most affected, so keep an eye on these areas for small, flat spots that are either brown, black or a kind of grayish color.

    Your Hormones

    Dark spots that are the result of unbalanced hormones are called melasma and they’re way more common in women than men thanks to the many hormonal changes women go through during their lives. Menstruation, pregnancy, birth control, hormone replacement therapy and the menopause all cause extreme changes in the female sex hormones and, just like exposure to the sun, this stimulates melanin production which, unfortunately gets a little out of control.

    Melasma is usually lighter in color than sun spots and it looks more patchy. It’s also commonly seen on the forehead, over the cheeks or around the lips – but almost always on the face, for sure. The good news is that, more often than not, melasma goes away after you pass through this stage in your life and come out the other end, or if you stop taking the medication that’s the primary cause.

    Skin Trauma

    Last, but certainly not least comes post-inflammatory hyperpigmention (PIH) which looks most severe in dark skin types but is pretty common in all genders and can happen at any time in your life.

    PIH happens when your skin becomes inflamed after its been subjected to some kind of injury or trauma. It’s most commonly caused by acne and in fact one out of every two acne sufferers will experience some form of PIH – or post-acne marks as they’re also called.

    But it’s not just acne that can trigger this type of hyperpigmentation: anything that causes inflammation has the ability to leave you with red, pink, brown or black PIH spots. A mild cut, bug bite or burn, for example, can go down that road, as can bouts of psoriasis, eczema or even surgery. As your skin regenerates and heals itself, excess melanin is produced which can leaves the area darkened and discolored long after the wound has gone.

    What Can You Do About Your Dark Spots?

    While not all dark spots are caused by the sun, UV radiation will make every single one of them worse. So, you gotta protect your skin every day to a) help prevent sun spots and b) lessen your chances of any type of dark spot becoming bigger and/or darker.

    Sun avoidance is, of course, the most effective way to keep your skin safe from the sun’s wicked ways, but, well, you have to live, so instead of being quite so drastic, simply up your skin protection game with these two simple must-dos.

    1. Apply Topical Antioxidants

    Apply an antioxidant serum every morning after cleansing and before moisturizing to kick things off. Antioxidants are the bomb for adding that little extra je ne sais quoi to your regime. How so? Well, they’re almost unbeatable at fighting off free radicals that, if left alone, will have a party when you expose your skin to the elements, damaging collagen, screwing up elastin and doing a number on your DNA. This is not only bad news for dark spots but it’s also asking for wrinkles to come and join in on the (not so) fun.

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    There are plenty of awesome antioxidants out there but our favorite for sun protection is vitamin C because it also helps to keep dark spots to a minimum by keeping melanin under control. Win. And win. Try our classic Vitamin C Facial Serum daily. No arguments.

    2. Wear Sunscreen ALL YEAR LONG

    It goes without saying that sunscreen is essential for preventing dark spots AND for helping to minimize existing ones. Not to mention all the other anti-aging benefits a sunscreen like our fabulous SPF 30 Mineral Sunscreen with Vitamin C brings to the table.

    To get the best protection from both UVA and UVB radiation, make sure you always choose a broad-spectrum formulation and never go below SPF 30 which blocks around 97 percent of UVB. Choose a mineral sunscreen that contains zinc oxide, titanium dioxide or both (we believe these are the best!) and apply it generously to all areas of exposed skin every morning. Reckon you can get away without it on cold, gray days? Think again. Sun damage is caused by UV radiation, not heat, which means that chilly, overcast days still have plenty of UV ready and willing to screw up your skin if you let it. The truth is, around 80 percent of UV radiation penetrates right through those clouds. Remember that.

    Should You Be Worried About Dark Spots & Skin Cancer?

    Hyperpigmentation is not related to skin cancer, but if you notice any kind of new dark spot developing or changing in size or color you should always consult a board-certified dermatologist to get it checked out.

    Skin cancer is the most common cancer in the US and around one in five of us will develop it by the time we’re 70. Don’t like those stats? Good, you shouldn’t, so make sure you get any mole, freckle or unusually dark patch of skin looked at by a professional.

    Sun Protection
    DYK, Not All Dark Spots Are Created The Same?
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  • 7 Of The Most Effective Skincare Hacks For Oily Skin
    Excellent news, people of the oily skin persuasion: you might not be able to change the structure of your skin but you can definitely help balance oil production with smart skincare choices. Step this way…

    If slick skin and sweaty bangs are the story of your life you’ve probably asked yourself time and again, when are the benefits of an oily complexion going to come to light? Hark back to your teenage years when puberty, and all the things that came with it, seemed like a never ending battle. Difficult times. Now you’re well into adulthood, and your skin is still as oily as ever. Granted, the wrinkles aren’t too bad, but your makeup rarely stays put and, tbh, monthly breakouts are still a struggle.

    Not. Fair.

    Oily skin can be tricky, we get that. But it’s who you are and, when you think about it, sebum – the oil of which we speak of – is absolutely crucial for the health of your skin. All manner of components like triglycerides, fatty acids, wax ester, cholesterol and squalene come together in sebum to seal moisture into your skin, repel environmental stressors and help transport antioxidants to the surface so your skin can heal and regenerate efficiently.

    Sebum also plays an important role in helping your skin maintain its slightly acidic pH level which prevents bacteria and viruses from penetrating the top layers. Without sebum, therefore, your skin would be a shadow of its former self. Try not to forget that the next time you look in the mirror and will it to go away.

    The amount of sebum your skin produces can’t be drastically altered – because, genetics – but there are many tweaks you can make to your skincare routine that can improve the balance and therefore the shininess of your complexion. Keep scrolling for seven of our favorites…

    1. Never Go To Bed Without Cleansing

    Taking your makeup off before turning in for the night is important whatever your skin type, but if you have oily skin, it’s absolutely non-negotiable. The reason for this? For one thing, oily skin attracts dirt and bacteria more than dry skin. And for another, when oil and bacteria combine with dead skin cells at the surface of your skin, you’re basically inviting acne breakouts to come and do a number on your complexion.

    Lesson learnt: don’t go to bed without cleansing your face. Like, ever. It’s just not worth it. And, heck, cleansing takes, what, three minutes of your time so it’s not like it’s a real chore.

    One of our favorite cleansers for oily skin is our Charcoal Clarifying Cleanser which contains activated coconut charcoal to mop up unwanted debris and detoxify the skin without complete drying it out.

    2. But, Don’t Be Tempted To Over-Cleanse

    While we’re on the subject of cleansing, it’s easy to overdo it as you try to rid your skin of every last drop of pesky sebum. But that’s a very bad idea. Over-stimulating your skin fools your sebaceous glands into thinking they’re not doing their job properly. So then they ramp it up big time, producing more and more sebum to compensate for all the stuff you’ve stripped away.

    Keep your cleansing routine gentle, but effective, and regular but not too often. Twice daily and always after exercising is the rule of thumb here.

    3. Remember That All Skin Needs Moisturization

    Oily skin has its own built-in and very hard-working moisturizing system, so it has no need for more, right? Wrong. So. Very. Wrong.

    Just like every other skin type, oily skin needs to be moisturized after cleansing. Contrary to popular belief, the right moisturizer won’t block up your pores or make your skin even more oily and pimply. Instead it will help to balance sebum, keeping your skin hydrated, healthy and less open to irritation and redness.

    You really must choose the correct moisturizer, however. And that means avoiding anything that contains rich, occlusive ingredients like cocoa butter and heavy oils which form a layer over the top of your skin and clog your pores. Instead, look for lighter gels or lotions that contain humectants like hyaluronic acid. We love Retinol Moisturizer which has the added benefits of retinol to help boost regeneration for clearer, more balanced skin.

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    4. Underestimate Exfoliation At Your Risk

    One of the best tools for oily skin? An awesome exfoliant that’s effective but super gentle on your skin. Whether you go for a chemical, leave-on formulation that contains things like glycolic acid or salicylic acid to break down dead skin cells, or prefer a face scrub that manually sloughs away those darn dead cells, exfoliating oily skin is imperative.

    Excess sebum is like a magnet for bacteria, you see, and when this mixes with dead skin cells it can block your pores, resulting in blackheads, whiteheads, pimples and any other kind of acne spots you might think of.

    The simple way to avoid all this? Keep your skin regularly exfoliated to accelerate cell turnover and make sure all that dead stuff doesn’t overstay its welcome. Try our Vitamin C Gentle Face Scrub two or three times a week after cleansing.

    5. Make Tea Tree Oil Your Friend

    Tea tree oil has been known and revered for centuries for its antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. And this makes it a shoo-in for balancing and soothing oily skin – specifically those that suffer problems with breakouts.

    Not only does tea tree oil help kill acne-causing bacteria on the surface of the skin, but it also works hard to calm and reduce facial redness. Be afraid, inflammation, be very afraid.

    The one thing to remember about tea tree oil, however, is that it’s potent – like, really potent – so, it’s much safer when thoughtfully blended with other skincare ingredients. Our Tea Tree Super Serum +, for example, contains a whole bunch of ingredients that work in harmony with tea tree oil to hydrate and balance the skin. It’s packed with aloehyaluronic acid and glycerin to draw in moisture, niacinamide to aid healing, plus two other awesome acne-fighters: salicylic acid and retinol. Try it a couple of times a week before bed for visible results within just a month or so.

    6. Tone, But Do It Wisely

    Toning your skin can be a fabulous way to balance excess oil – but don’t fall into the trap of choosing a super astringent formula that will soak up too much oil as this will cause your skin to produce even more sebum as it tries to overcompensate for all the stuff you’ve stripped away. Instead, tone, for sure, but choose a more balanced, refreshing product that helps finish off your cleanse while preparing the skin for the rest of your regime. We love Ocean Minerals Super Toner which also contains glycolic acid for a little extra boost of exfoliation.

    7. Keep Your Hydration Topped Up

    OK, here’s the thing about dehydrated skin: ANY skin type can be dehydrated. This is because unlike dry skin which is genetic and thanks to insufficient oil, dehydration is a skin condition that can occur at any time and is all thanks to a lack of moisture. Oily skin, in particular, can get dehydrated very easily because you’re more likely to use more powerful skincare products on the reg while applying less intense moisturization.

    To avoid your skin becoming unnecessarily dehydrated, make sure your routine contains plenty of humectant ingredients which draw moisture to the surface of your skin. Good ones include aloe vera, glycerin and the most popular of all, hyaluronic acid which you’ll find aplenty in our Hyaluronic Acid Facial Serum. We like to apply this daily, after cleansing and toning, but BEFORE moisturizing.

    Skincare Tips
    7 Of The Most Effective Skincare Hacks For Oily Skin
    read more
  • Without Doubt, The Best Things To Look Out For In A Sunscreen
    It’s vital to make sure your sunscreen is doing everything it can to protect you from the sun’s evil rays. Here’s how to get on that.

    The sun is annoying. When it’s out everything seems better. Your mood elevates, your spirit lifts, your hair looks shiny, heck even your complexion looks great. But beneath all that fabulous stuff lies some serious business. Because as awesome as the sun is  – heck, we’d be non-existent without it – it’s just no good.

    No good as far as your skin is concerned, anyway.

    Ticking clocks aside, the sun is the number one cause of skin aging. In fact, it’s responsible for somewhere between 80 and 90 percent of all your aging skin concerns. Wrinkles? Sun. Loss of firmness? Sun. Dark spots? Sun. Almost always, you can point the finger at the sun. Also, did you know that over 80 percent of skin cancers are caused by overexposure to UV radiation?

    As we said: the sun is no good.

    Of course, we don’t recommend you close the blinds and never leave the house again. Drama, much? But being more sun savvy is something we can all accomplish. Staying out of the midday sun, wearing wide-brimmed hats and choosing protective clothing, for example – not too much to ask, right?

    It's also wise to wear sunscreen whenever you expose your skin to the sun. It’s just common sense if you care about warding off premature skin aging for as long as possible. And it's an extremely important tool for preventing skin cancer which, according to the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD), around one in five Americans will develop at some point in their lives.

    But what are the most important things a good sunscreen should offer or are they all decent enough? Well, in answer to the latter, no they’re not. And to answer the former, keep scrolling for the five most important things to look out for…

    1. The Magic SPF Number

    As we’re sure you know, a sunscreen’s SPF value is there to show you how well it’s going to protect you from burning. Low numbers offer you less protection whereas high numbers give you much greater protection. Simple enough, right? Ha, if only. Going by these rules makes it tempting to choose insanely high SPF ratings in a bid to protect your skin as best you can. However, the truth is that SPF 30 actually blocks a whopping 97 percent of UVB radiation, so anything higher than that is going to be very minimal. SPF 50, for example, only blocks an extra 1 percent, and studies show that anything above that provides almost no additional protection whatsoever.

    That’s why we believe, along with most skin experts, that SPF 30 is the sweet spot.

    Also, what about UVA radiation? Well, we’ll come to that in a minute because SPF doesn’t go there, it’s only an indication of UVB protection – the one that causes sunburn – not UVA which is present all year long and the biggest offender of skin aging. An easy way to remember which is which? Think UVA for aging and UVB for burning.

    2. The Term ‘Broad Spectrum’

    So you’ve got your UVB protection sorted thanks to SPF, but how do you know your product will also protect you from UVA radiation? After all, UVA rays are around every day, eating away at your collagen supplies and aging up your skin like nobody’s business – even on cloudy days. They’re arguably the worst of the lot.

    Thankfully, there’s a simple way to ensure you’re getting the right level of UVA protection from your sunscreen: only ever buy broad spectrum. Any product that doesn’t mention this term? Not worth your dollars.

    A broad-spectrum formulation that has SPF 30 is ideal for providing you with the optimum level of protection from both UVA and UVB radiation. It’s what we like to call the best of both worlds.

    3. The Gold Standard Mineral Protection

    There are two types of sun protection – mineral and chemical. Chemical sunscreens use ingredients like oxybenzone, octisalate, avobenzone, octocrylene and octinoxate to absorb and break down UV rays where they are then released back out through your skin. They’re pretty smart, but some experts believe they cause hormonal disruption as well as damage to the planet’s waterways and marine life. We’re not keen on any of that.

    Mineral (or physical) sunscreens, on the other hand, contain active mineral ingredients like zinc oxide and titanium dioxide. These sit on the surface of your skin, forming a physical, reflective barrier against UV radiation, and we believe they’re way more effective at stopping the sun’s rays from potentially damaging your skin.

    Both zinc oxide and titanium dioxide naturally protect your skin from UVA and UVB radiation which is another plus point and why they’re the only two sunscreen ingredients currently proposed safe and effective by the FDA. They’re also environment friendly and provide instant protection for your skin. Chemical sunscreens have to be applied at least 20 minutes before exposure.

    Mineral protection is the only way to go, IOHO.

    4. The Antioxidant Extras

    Products that go the extra mile for your skin are priceless. So, if you really want to maximize the effects of your sunscreen, look out for formulations that also contain antioxidants.

    Antioxidants fight tooth and nail to shield your skin from the damaging effects of free radicals, and exposure to the sun is one of the biggest causes of free radicals. When you put two and two together, therefore, it makes perfect sense that antioxidants should be a non-negotiable part of your daily skincare routine.

    Studies have shown that one of the best antioxidants for sun protection is vitamin C. It’s genius for neutralizing any free radicals that are trying to do a number on your collagen supplies, plus it makes your sunscreen work harder and better by improving the absorption of UV radiation.

    If that’s not enough to convince you, vitamin C also helps reduce and fade dark spots by blocking melanin production. The good news is that our SPF 30 Mineral Sunscreen contains a hefty amount of antioxidant-rich vitamin C so it does all the hard work for you. You're welcome!

    5. The Best Possible Water Resistance

    OK, so this one isn’t quite as important for your daily facial sunscreen – unless you spend all day, every day in a swimming pool or the ocean – but when on vacation, a water resistant formulation is vital.

    In order to have the term ‘water resistant’ on its label, a product has to be tested to offer resistance from the clear stuff for at least 40 minutes. After that period of time, you MUST reapply.

    However, let’s get one thing clear, sunscreens can never be entirely waterproof (it’s impossible), so if you see that written on a bottle that’s a red flag right there. It’s also disallowed by the FDA so... naughty.

    Sun Protection
    Without Doubt, The Best Things To Look Out For In A Sunscreen
    read more
  • 5 Ways To Make Your Facial Serum Work Better
    Investing in an awesome face serum is all well and good, but if you don’t use it properly you could miss out on all of its important benefits.

    Having the knowledge of when, how and why to use a specific skincare product is golden. Granted, some are pretty self-explanatory. Cleanser? Easy, you use it twice daily to, well, cleanse your face and get rid of any debris that’s built-up over the past 8-12 hours. Moisturizer? Also, a fairly simple concept that comes at the end of your routine and helps seal moisture into your skin.

    But what about serums? Touted by everyone from beauty influencers to dermatologists as the key to youthful, healthy skin, face serums sound easy enough, but know this – there’s a definite right and wrong way to use them. Apply yours like a skincare pro and you’ll see some incredible results after regular, continued use. Use it incorrectly, however, and you may as well have saved your money for those new Chloé shades you’ve been eyeing up all spring.

    Serums are created to specifically target your most annoying skin concerns. They have a smaller molecular structure than moisturizers which means they’re able to penetrate much deeper and quicker into your skin. They also contain high concentrations of active ingredients like retinol, peptides, hyaluronic acid or vitamin C. All good stuff, right? You’re not kidding. In fact, this super powered combination of quick delivery AND awesome ingredients means that facial serums are among the most important products in your skincare routine.

    But only if you use them properly.

    Of course, the most important thing to do before using any new skincare formulation is to a) read the instructions thoroughly so you know what you’re dealing with, and b) patch test your product first. Patch testing is crucial when dealing with serums because their potency can lead to skin irritation if not handled with caution. Simply apply a small amount of serum to a discreet area of your skin (behind your ears is a great spot) and leave it for 24-48 hours to check for a reaction. See nothing? Feel nothing? Then you should be good to go.

    Then, follow our guide for expert serum application. Honestly, we abide by these rules every single day – morning and night.

    1. Always Work On Clean Skin

    This feels a bit like a moot point but you’d be surprised by how many people think they can just shove on their skincare products without first cleansing their face and neck. Such a crazy mistake. You simply have to get rid of debris from the surface of your skin before applying any type of skincare product that’s formulated to penetrate the top layers of your skin. Otherwise it’ll have to work extra hard to even reach your skin if it has a blanket of sweat, sebum, dirt and makeup to wade through.

    The tricks for great cleansing are to avoid hot water, be thorough but never heavy-handed, and always choose gentle ingredients tailored for your skin type. If you have dry skin, for example, go for our fabulous Soothing Cleansing Milk which combines rice and oat milks for thorough, but kind-to-skin cleansing. If you’re mega oily, however, you might be better off with Charcoal Clarifying Cleanser which is a great product for balancing excess sebum and detoxifying troubled skin – without drying it out, of course. Massage your product all over your skin (neck included) then rinse thoroughly and pat with a clean face towel.

    2. Don’t Use Too Much…

    … which begs the question, exactly how much is too much?

    Most serums will give you a guide as to the correct amount to use for each application, but the general rule of thumb is that a pea-sized amount or a few drops should be plenty. Remember, serums are super concentrated and they smooth on your skin very easily, so a thin, even coating will deliver plenty of the good stuff to your complexion. Any more, is just going to be a waste.

    3. Try Applying Your Serum To Damp Skin

    Damp skin is more permeable than dry skin and therefore more receptive to active skincare ingredients. This is why we love to apply our serum straight away after cleansing or toning while the skin is still ever so slightly damp.

    Apply a couple of drops to your hand as quickly as you can, then press rather than rub your serum onto your face using clean hands. And don’t worry about massaging it in, either. All you need to do is gently tap your skin all over to ensure you cover all areas of your face.

    4. Exfoliate First

    Getting rid of build-up and dead skin cells is a great way to ensure your serum has nothing getting in its the way. You want your skin to absorb and penetrate the skin deeper down where all the good stuff happens; not to sit on top, trying to contend with all those dead skin cells that, quite frankly, shouldn’t even be there in the first place.

    If you’re a scrub kinda person, try our new Vitamin C Gentle Face Scrub which is the ideal way to prepare your skin to take on all those awesome actives in your serum. Not a big fan of face scrubs? No problem, we also have a fabulous chemical exfoliant that contains glycolic and salicylic acids plus a whole host of other skin reviving ingredients to accelerate cell turnover and boost the results from your favorite face serum. 6% AHA, BHA + PHA Liquid Exfoliant is its name and rejuvenating your skin is its game!

    5. Finish With Moisturizer

    No matter how hydrating a serum is, you must always apply moisturizer afterwards. Hark back to when we talked about all those small molecules that make up a serum’s structure, giving it a thin, silky-smooth texture. Well, this is because serums don’t contain ingredients like occlusives or emollients which are important for creating a moisture-sealing layer over the surface of your skin. That’s where your ‘actual’ moisturizer comes to the forefront.

    Moisturizers are thicker than serums which makes them super important for locking your serum and all of its ingredients into your skin. So, do not miss this important step.

    And sunscreen. But that goes without saying, right? RIGHT?

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  • How To Achieve The Heady Heights Of Glass Skin
    What is glass skin and how can you get it? Read on for the lowdown on this shiny, dewy skin trend that shows no signs of going away.

    Skin trends are an odd phenomenon. Unlike your hair and makeup which you can temporarily change with different colors, tricks, techniques and updos, your skin is what it is. Sure, you can improve its condition with better lifestyle choices and an awesome skincare routine, but you can’t fundamentally change the structure of the skin you were born with. It’s called genetics.

    It’s still kind of cool to keep up with beauty trends that concern your skin, however. But, really, it’s all about trends in skincare, not actual skin. Think skin cycling, product personalization, skinimalism (which is still all over TikTok, btw), that kind of thing.

    And the latest trend we (and the rest of the world) are into? Glass skin.

    What Is Glass Skin?

    Originating from Korean beauty practices where dewy, hydrated, uber healthy skin reigns above all else, glass skin is all about looking after your skin so that it looks and feels its absolute best. Pop words like ‘smooth,’ ‘glowing,’ ‘crystal-clear,’ ‘plump,’ ‘radiant’ and ‘fresh’ to the top of your skincare goals and you’ll be on the right track.

    Glass skin is basically the skin ideal. We don’t like to think of it as skin perfection because that’s way beyond most of our reaches, but it’s about cleansing like a pro, layering on hydration and using skincare products and techniques (rather than piles of highlighting makeup) to help your skin look radiant and luminous. Just like glass.

    Of course, getting your skin to behave in a glass-like fashion is not easy. If you have oily skin, for example, it can be a slippery slope from glowy skin to greasy-looking skin. Similarly, if your skin is dry, you’re going to need some darn good layers of moisturization in order to get glass-like skin.

    It’s important, therefore to listen to your skin and adapt your glass skin routine to suit you.

    That being said, there are a few key steps that can help you along the road. To follow, five of our favorites.

    1. Try A (Gentle) Double Cleanse

    Double cleansing splits the beauty world. Some swear by it, others believe it to be completely unnecessary. And us? Well, we sit somewhere in the middle. It’s very effective for those who sweat a lot, wear a good amount of makeup or have particularly oily skin. But it can be too much for sensitive skin types and is kind of pointless if you live your life wearing zero makeup. That’s our take, anyway.

    If you want to have the cleanest, clearest skin of your life, however, and take care as you do it, double cleansing can be a great place to start. It’s also another K-beauty concept, so go figure!

    Double cleansing is basically the act of cleansing your skin twice – first with an oil-based cleanser or makeup remover to dissolve things like makeup, sebum and sunscreen, then a water-based cleanser to rid your skin of other impurities like sweat and pollutants. By cleansing your skin twice you ensure you completely remove all kinds of debris that may have built up throughout the day. And by doing this you keep your pores clear and your breakouts under control. Because, while pimples and in-your-face pores aren’t the end of the world, they’re no friends of glass skin.

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    If you fancy giving double cleansing a go, do it at night only – when your skin has the most build-up on its surface – and use the gentlest formulations possible to avoid drying out your skin. We have plenty of incredible cleansers to choose from but our Vitamin C Brightening Cleanser is a smart option for step two as it also helps amp up your radiance at the same time.

    2. Exfoliate Regularly

    Exfoliation is another awesome step to do at night because it’s a fantastic way to slough away dead skin cells and accelerate cell turnover while you sleep, helping you to wake up with smoother, brighter-looking skin.

    Whether you choose a chemical exfoliant like 6% AHA, BHA + PHA Liquid Exfoliant or a physical scrub like Vitamin C Gentle Face Scrub our most important advice is not to go too crazy. Be extra gentle with your skin, exfoliating just once or twice a week, and if you feel like your skin can’t handle that, cut it back to find your sweet spot.

    Exfoliation is awesome for glass skin, irritated skin is not.

    3. Invest In A Hydrating Toner

    Toner might feel like one of those skincare steps you can really do without, but it can be a fabulous way to start boosting your hydration levels as early as possible. And glass skin is nothing without hydration.

    Unlike the toners of the ‘80s which stripped all the life from your skin, modern day formulations are crafted to balance your skin’s pH levels, up its moisture content and prepare your skin to soak up all the goodness from the rest of your skincare routine. They really are the first step to ultimate skin hydration – which is basically the opposite of their predecessors!

    Our Rose Water Refreshing Facial Toner, for example, contains just one ingredient – pure Moroccan Rose Water – to gently refresh, hydrate, soothe and refine your skin, while Ocean Minerals Super Toner is charged with powerful minerals, vitamin C and glycolic acid to revitalize and hydrate a dull, flagging complexion.

    Apply your chosen formulation immediately after cleansing and then get ready to start building on this great hydration foundation with the rest of your routine.

    4. Layer Up With Serum

    Facial serums are your next port of call for the dewy skin of your dreams so don’t miss this important step – night and day. Serums are able to penetrate your skin much better than moisturizers which is why they’re often packed with concentrated active ingredients to treat your skin at a deeper level.

    In terms of glass skin goals, the best ingredients to look out for are water-loving humectants like glycerin and hyaluronic acid, alongside vitamin C for brightening, vitamin E for soothing and niacinamide for smoothing texture and improving tone. Fruit acids are also a good shout for encouraging cell turnover while peptides help improve firmness and keep collagen synthesis in good working order.

    Of course, you don’t want to overload your skin with too many actives (cue irritation!) so choose your serums wisely and if you want to work on a few different concerns, try using one serum in the morning and a different one at night. You could also try our incredible Multi-Vitamin Facial Serum which is fantastic way to target a whole number of skin concerns.

    Just remember to apply your serum immediately after toning to help seal in moisture, and use just a small amount. More than a few drops is a total waste.

    5. Finish With Moisturizer (& Sunscreen EVERY Morning!)

    Last but not least, in fact last but most of all, is moisturizer – the final step in the glassification (hmm, made-up word?) of your fabulous complexion.

    Now is not the time to look for mattifying formulations but instead go for the richest moisturizer your skin will take. That’s what’s going to help seal in all that hard hydrating work you’ve already accomplished. If your skin is oily, you’ll want to steer clear of super heavy creams and butters in favor of lighter lotions, but if your skin is dry, they’ll lap up all that richness.

    Ingredients like fatty acids, ceramides, shea butter and sunflower seed oil are ideal for imparting a gorgeous glow and truly moisturized complexion – even better when combined by brightening antioxidants like vitamin C or the hydrating powers of aloe vera.

    We’re currently loving our Firming Collagen Day Lotion in the morning and Vitamin C Deep Hydration Night Cream before bed, but we have plenty where those came from, right here.

    To finish, don’t forget to generously apply SPF 30 Mineral Sunscreen with Vitamin C every morning without fail. Sun protection might not seem the obvious choice for nailing a glass-like complexion but if you allow the sun to destroy your collagen it’ll age you up at lightning speeds and your skin will never have the plump luminosity that glass skin requires.

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