Is Stress Aging Your Skin?

Is Stress Aging Your Skin?


Life brings with it lots of stress. Kids, work and money issues to name a few. All trigger the stress hormone cortisol. Cortisol, produced by our adrenal glands, has the important function of allowing us to survive immediate, danger when in “fight or flight” situations. That was great back when you had to worry about getting chased by a saber tooth tiger, but today stress is a little different.

During “fight or flight” your body reacts by:

• Rapid heartbeat and breathing:

The body increases heart rate and respiration in order to provide energy and oxygen where it is needed to quickly flee dangerous situations.

• Pale or flushed skin:

As the stress response starts to take hold, blood flow to the surface areas of our bodies are reduced to direct blood to the muscles, brain, legs and arms. You might become pale as a blood drains from your face. Conversely, some people get flushed as blood rushes to their brain.

• Dilated Pupils:

The body prepares itself to become more acutely aware of its surroundings.

• Trembling;

As your body becomes primed to face danger the tension can result in trembling or shaking.

The thing is, we have different stresses today. Stresses that aren’t as temporary as being chased by a tiger. Stresses that may never seem to go away. The long-term effects of fight or flight will eventually start to break down your body, aging you and your skin and potentially leading to disease. The effects of stress are cumulative. Your body may have handled stress better when you were younger, but by middle age your stress bucket might be full. At that point many of us experience adrenal burnout.

Some symptoms of adrenal burnout:

• Weight gain:

Especially around your middle. Fat is deposited there as a survival mechanism to protect our vital organs in times of stress. Oh, great!

• Loose skin:

Prolonged cortisol breaks down the connective tissue, that supports collagen and elastin fibers in the dermis of your skin, leaving it loose and flaccid.

• Increased lines & wrinkles:

Cortisol interferes with your circadian sleep cycles. Sleep is so important for your skin because it’s the time when most healing and repair occurs. This is why we recommend serums and treatment products to be applied just before bed.

• Cross linking of collagen:

Elevated cortisol levels means increased cravings for sweets. That’s because cortisol spikes insulin (the hunger hormone). Think about it, when you’re feeling stressed is it your first impulse to run and get a kale salad, or is are you more likely to grab a slice of chocolate cake?

• Your skin becomes dull and loses its glow:

Because blood is being diverted from your face to other parts of your body, you become deprived of vital nutrients. Your face takes on a tired, lack luster look. Cells dies prematurely which leads to skin aging.

• You might develop rosacea:

If you’re one of those lucky ones whose skin flushes under stressful situations, learning stress reduction techniques is of vital importants.

• Dark Circles may appear:

Stagnant lymph can occur under your eyes making them look puffy, blueish, and perpetually tired.

• You can develop eczema:

Stress lowers your immune system, leaving you vulnerable to eczema, rashes and itchiness.

• Dry Skin:

The lack of circulation to skin cells can leave you dehydrated and skin cells under nourished leading to early senescence.

• Adult Acne: Cortisol also acts as an androgen which increases oil production and increased inflammation. Great, you’re worried about that job interview and now you’ve got a pimple.

Does this mean we’re all doomed if we live our lives under stress?

Well, there are certain things you can do to help your body handle stress in a meaningful way.

Light Exercise:

If you have adrenal burnout you may want to change the way you exercise. While some of us can sustain intense training. If you already have over the top cortisol levels you may actually be breaking down muscles and collagen with vigorous, high intensity workouts that your body perceives as more stress. More moderate exercise, like long walks might be better for you in the long run. Yoga can also be a good alternative choice. Note that moving is an important stress buster, so you need to get up and exercise every day. Sitting at your computer increases stress hormones in a big way, you have to counteract that by getting exercise in there… somehow.

Cut out the sugar:

Refined sugar leads to higher cortisol levels and insulin resistance, which makes you more hungry for more high carb and nutrient deficient foods and more likely to experience sugar causing glycation of collagen fibers in your skin. This leads to wrinkles and excess inflammation which also breaks down skin cells, leading to loss of tone and dullness.

Add omega 3 fatty acids to your diet:

Omega 3s are great for counteracting inflammation caused by stress. Walnuts, salmon and avocados are good choices. Also consider skincare products which include omega 3s. Check out Elizabeth Renee’s Kukui Cleansing Milk, Intensive Lipid Repair night cream and Good Nite sleeping masque as skincare products that help calm dry, stressed out skin.

Eat your veggies:

These are your number one nutritional stress defense. Cruciferous vegetables help lower blood sugar. These veggies carry abundant nutrients, antioxidants and anti-inflammatories you need to counteract stress. This should be your highest priority for a healthier lifestyle and reducing the damaging effects of stress. You may also want to supplement with Sunrise Solution, an intense antioxidant serum derived from superfoods. It can easily be add to your morning skincare routine.

Get Space:

Giving yourself a little R&R is a perfect way to lower stress hormones. Put yourself in a good place. Go somewhere peaceful that you enjoy. A walk on the beach or hike in the park isn’t a selfish allegation of time. It’s good for you, and good for those around you. As you lower your stress hormones you’ll become more tolerant of others.  Better for everyone. Getting a massage, or facial may seem like a pampering indulgence, but offers a great boost for your health. Practicing meditation may also be a good choice, although I find it a bit stressful trying to be disciplined enough to control my thought like that. But great if it works for you… go for it.  You might also want to try breathing exercises, which have been shown to help lower stress hormones in the form of relaxation response techniques.

Laughter and social connections:

Isolation causes stress. Social connections help you to get some of that stress out of your system, definitely lowering stress hormones. Remember, your attitude has a powerful effect on stress hormones. Taking everything a little lighter not only lowers cortisol but increases telomere length of your chromosomes. This is a major biomarker for longevity. (More about that in a coming post.) Rumination, or not being able to let things go by playing events over and over in your head, sets you up for continued stress hormones circulating your body, playing havoc with your health and the health of your skin. So just find a way to let it go, and watch how your stress levels drop. You and your skin will feel so much better.

Disclaimer: The preceding article was meant for educational purposes only and not intended as medical advice.

Cold Weather Skin Savers

Cold Weather Skin Savers

Burrrrrr. It’s cold outside. You thought you had your skincare routine tweaked to perfection but when the heat turned on you instantly felt like a prune. Moisture was immediately sucked out of your skin leaving it tight, dry, flaky and uncomfortable. Even worse, you suspect you’re looking a bit older than you did just a few short weeks ago. Yikes!

It’s time to rev up your skincare routine to reflect this new environment. Don’t despair, a few changes will help you sail through to get you to the sunnier side of the season. (Even if that means waiting ‘til May if you live in New England.) The following winter time skin savers should do the trick, bringing back that moist happy skin you love.

It’s not just water:

Sure, drinking water helps hydrate your body, and hopefully your skin. But, I know so many clients who drink a full 10 to 12 glasses a day and still experience dry, dehydrated skin. That’s because drinking water doesn’t guarantee that the water is going to be absorbed into your skin. (It may just keep you running to the bathroom). Even if it does get absorbed, with this cold dry air or arid indoor heat, it gets sucked out just as quickly. The key here, if you have dry skin, is lipids and emollients. Barrier ingredients that hold water in your skin and protect it from the environment, bringing relief as it soothes, softens and conditions your skin.

Change up your routine:

It’s important to change your cleanser. The sudden change in weather means the slightest bit of detergent, surfactants or foaming agents will rob dry skin of its precious moisture when used this time of the year. Even that milky cleanser you switched to this fall might be over cleansing your skin. So, look for something a bit more soothing and emollient. Try an Omega 3 fatty acid based cleanser.

Omega 3 fatty acids truly are remarkable ingredients for your skin. They serve as the essential building blocks of skin’s surface layers, creating a smoother, more even, younger-looking, and healthier complexion, no matter what your age. If the idea of putting fish oil on your skin sounds a bit gross, don’t worry—plant-derived omega 3 formulations are remarkable. Here are some things a topical application of omega 3 fatty acids based products can do for your skin:

• Reinforce and smooth your skin’s surface.

• Increase hydration without feeling heavy.

• Calm external stressors, including redness and sensitivity.

• Eliminate signs of flaky, dehydrated-looking skin.

• Visibly strengthen skin against signs of environmental damage.

• Deliver antioxidants for anti-aging results.

• Help dissolve makeup easily when included in your cleansing formula.

All of these benefits mean that applying omega fatty acids directly to skin leads to visible rewards you’ll love. Elizabeth Renee has developed an emollient milky cleanser based on nut oils that is rich with omega 3 fatty acids. These oils derive from hazelnuts, kukui nuts, cherry pits, borage seeds and rose hips. They include sweet almond oil, evening primrose oil and rose oil. Kukui Cleansing Milk has a luxurious feel that isn’t greasy and washes off clean without leaving your skin feeling tight.

Omegas have a natural affinity for skin, and are especially beneficial when combined with other soothing and protective ingredients like Shea butter, green tea and licorice root. This formulary approach is exactly what we do at Elizabeth Renee with our Kukui Cleansing Milk and its exclusive blend of omega 3 fatty acids.

Changing your diet:

This is no time to forget about fatty acids in your diet. Omega 3s are found in foods like cold water fish (salmon), flax seeds, chia seeds and walnuts. Plus, your grandmother was right when it came to cod liver oil. Yuck you say? Well fresh, good quality cod liver oil (I like the Arctic brand) doesn’t taste fishy at all. Not only is this oil high in omega-3 fatty acids, it is also loaded with anti-aging vitamins A and D.

In its active form as calcitriol, vitamin D contributes to skin cell growth, repair, and metabolism. It optimizes the skin’s immune system and helps destroy free radicals that can cause premature aging.

Retinol (vitamin A) is my number one favorite skin vitamin. It organizes skin cells for a smoother texture and reduced clogging of the pores. In the dermis it builds collagen, resulting in youthful and plump skin. While I’m a big fan of using Retinol Resurfacing Treatment regularly for its stellar vitamin A anti-aging qualities, consuming vitamin A is also essential. You can get plenty of beta carotene (a precursor to vitamin A) from vegetables like yams, carrots and spinach, but only about 5% is actually converted to vitamin A. This means animal sources like grass fed, organic eggs, butter and cheese and cold water fish like salmon… or cod liver oil are most effective. I take a tsp. every morning to nix the possibility of dry winter skin.

Dry heat. Protect yourself!

Barrier protection is essential this time of year. If you’re using moisturizers that are mostly comprised of water holding humectants which worked great in summer, that may be doing more damage than good when the air is dry. Sure, humectants grab on to moisture for your parched skin, but honestly where does that moisture come from? If the air is dry as a bone that humectant is going to draw water from the deepest layers of your skin… which can ultimately evaporate and dehydrate your skin. To prevent this, you need to intensify your moisturizing formula by providing more emollients or adding a protective layer that holds that moisture in and acts somewhat like an overcoat to protect your skin.

My favorite wintertime moisturizer for very dry skin is Intensive Lipid Repair. This luxuriously rich formula not only includes an array of omega 3 fatty acids but has great emollients like Shea Butter and a special performance ingredient called Ursolic Acid (from rosemary extract). Ursolic Acid has the ability to stimulate your own skin cells to produce more natural lipids which hold moisture in between skin cells of your epidermis. If you have very dry skin you might want to use this both day and night especially during a deep freeze.

The overcoat that creates a breathable barrier for your skin is a calming skin serum called Environmental Protection. This very popular serum was first formulated as a protective layer to apply over moisturizer to create a barrier to ward off dehydration during airplane travel. Now it has a loyal following. Apply it over moisturizer any time you are exposed to a dry environment. It keeps the dry air in your house from robbing your skin of moisture as well as protecting against the cold, dry air outside. This great serum includes omega rich fatty acids from Evening Primrose and Barrage Seed Oils which are super skin soothers for sensitive or environmentally stressed skin.

Special Treatment:

One of the best ways to retexturize, repair, condition and rehydrate your skin is with an incredibly fun and effective treatment masque we call Good Nite Sleeping Masque. This rich, overnight hybrid masque/night cream conditions skin to create a wonderfully smooth, soft skin by morning. This new masque is formulated with detoxifying Swiss Garden Sprouts that enhance cellular resistance and promote the elimination of environmental toxins. Omega rich Sea Buckthorn and Black Raspberry keep skin looking fresh, healthy and supple while providing antioxidant protection.

Time to head to the spa:

My favorite dry skin treatment for winter is our Cell Youth Anti-Aging Facial. Based on stem cell stimulators that nudge your skin cells to go into repair mode, plus super hydrators to increase your skin’s ability to retain moisture inside skin cells. This gentle, skin rejuvenating treatment is a must this time of year to wake up sluggish skin cells and coax them to start acting more like younger skin.

MICROCHANNELING REJUVENATION – The next big thing in skincare.

MICROCHANNELING REJUVENATION –  The next big thing in skincare.

Next time you have a spa visit it will be worth your while to check out MicroChanneling Rejuvenation treatments.  I’m a huge fan and feel this is the next big thing in professional skincare. That’s because it’s minimally invasive and provides dramatic results which have been scientifically supported.  Your skin will look instantly better, plumper, smoother, healthier and more radiant. Check out this list of benefits you get from MicroChanneling Rejuvenation:

  1. Reduces Fine Lines & Wrinkles:
    MicroChanneling Rejuvenation breaks up irregular cross linked collagen fibers that often results in wrinkles and that thick, dull, leathery look so many of us want to erase.  At the same time it dramatically stimulates repair factors to produce a healthy supply of the right kind of collagen along with elastin, and glycosaminoglycans for a smoother, firmer complexion.


  2. Volumizing:
    MicroChanneling Rejuvenation uses a unique stamping method that creates tiny micro columns in the skin that go down to the base of the epidermis where it stimulates fibroblasts to produce the new collagen fibers in an upward fashion.  This enhances the thickness and strength of your skin in the dermal layer.  In the epidermis it stimulates keratinocytes to create a thicker, more organized epithelial layer.  This is not the kind of unhealthy thickness that comes from an accumulation of corneocytes as a result of sun damage, but the increased keratinocytes which are fresh, vibrant, plump and well hydrated.


  3. Helps Reduce Age Spots:
    MicroChanneling Rejuvenation aids in exfoliation of the top layers of skin to minimize age spots.  It also increases penetration of cytokines which help normalize melanin production (the pigment producing cells in your skin) thus encouraging a more even toned complexion.


  4. Acne Scarring:
    MicroChanneling Rejuvenation can help reduce acne scarring by helping to break down unorganized scar tissue and stimulating the skin to produce new collagen that is laid down in a healthy columnar fashion as opposed to flat striated layers.


  5. Premature Skin Aging:
    MicroChanneling Rejuvenation not only minimizes wrinkles, it stimulates energy in keratinocytes which wakes up fibroblasts to encourage skin to repair and replace cells in a way that’s similar to the way your younger cells used to do – minimizing future wrinkles.


  6. Pore Size:
    MicroChanneling Rejuvenation helps to normalize the sizes of pores that have been expanded over time – especially those around the nose and cheeks which may be the result of the flattening of the dermis which occurs with age.  By producing healthier collagen and healthy thickening of the epidermis the pore size appears smaller.


  7. Reduces Clogged Pores:
    MicroChanneling Rejuvenation perforates the skin to loosen and dislodge hardened oil found in clogged pores.


Not to be confused with Micro-Needling Treatments that are rolled or glided over the skin. Those micro-needling treatments of the past dragged over the skin creating uneven cuts or tears that caused unnecessary inflammation.   Even fractional lasers rely on intensely high temperatures which create damage before it jump-starts wound healing and collagen production.  MicroChanneling Rejuvenation uses tiny needles that only go down to the dermal/epidermal junction.  This way it excites cytokines to go into repair mode without causing excessive damage, and without unnecessary downtime, discomfort or inflammation.

How many Treatments Do you Need?

The number of treatments range greatly depending on what we are treating:

  • For light anti-aging: 1-3 treatments are recommended.
  • For deeper wrinkles or acne scarring at least 6 treatments may be required.
  • There is no limit to the number of treatments that one can receive as long as adequate time passes between each treatment.
  • The ideal time between treatments is 4 weeks.
  • We encourage you to have them in-between your regular facial treatments.
  • You can purchase a series of 3 or 6 treatments for a reduced price.

MicroChanneling Rejuvenation creates invisible micro-perforations which stimulate cells called keratinocytes to produce new collagen, elastin, glycosaminoglycans and healthy epithelial cells.  It does this by stimulating the healing cascade of cytokines, which is a natural part of your body’s repair mechanism.

Visible improvements in aging skin, acne scarring, uneven pigmentation and overall tone and texture are real with MicroChanneling Rejuvenation.  With our expertise, we can show you how to make those results last!

For a limited time you can experience your first MicroChanneling Rejuvenation Treatment and save $50 off the regular price of $300. 

Book this special now.



Pout Perfect

Pout Perfect


The color story right now is all about lips. So, get ready to pucker up!  Your mother’s lipstick formulas just won’t do.  It’s time to explore something new. Change your mind, change your formula and change the age you’re being perceived at – to something a little more current, a little more polished and definitely more fun.

Whether you want nude, natural, bright or bold the texture you choose is just as important as the color.  The newer formulas have a matte like intrigue, even when choosing a satin finish.  They have more coverage and more payoff for a prettier lip.

Full Spectrum 2


NEW! Cream Lipsticks

The newest cream formulas are opulent, creamy, intensely-pigmented and bathe your lips with moisture. They glide over lips with powerful and enduring pigments and a blend of moisture-rich oils, butters and waxes that help lips remain supple, comfortable and soft. Antioxidant Vitamin E helps keep lips protected, conditioned and hydrated throughout the day. My favorites…

Seductive Scarlet

Seductive Scarlet

I’ve always felt a little conspicuous wearing red, but this red is perfect even for the faint of heart.  A cool brown red, it’s sexy and smart and makes me feel like a grownup.  With my maturing skin, I always wear a Professional Lip Primer underneath.  It smoothes lines (works great to smooth lip lines above the lips).  Primer also extends lipstick wear and makes lips appear fuller and more sensuous. I always finish with a drop of Plumping Gloss (try Enchanted).


Naughty Nude

Most days I go for nude lips.  This formula is about accentuating the good. It’s a cool brown, beige. Lips look soft and creamy and it gives just enough color to perk up your skin.  Still subtle and casual, but I bit more refined.  I still wear my Professional Lip Primer underneath, that goes without saying for all these new formulas.  My secret lip trick is to apply LipToxyl X3 at night, it boosts hydration and collagen synthesis to banish wrinkles and build fullness and volume.


Playful Peach

This is a creamy neutral pink with warm undertones that perfectly syncs with client’s complexions that have medium to light golden undertone.  This fun shade perks up their skin while it adds definition and a subtle pop of color. Ballet Waterproof Gel Liner compliments this shade as it insures definition and keeps this lipstick in place all day.

NEW! Satin Lipsticks

Full on mattes are also in vogue right now, especially if you’re very young with a perfect complexion.  For the rest of us, the new satins are more forgiving and more wearable.  This great new formula not only offers a richer payoff, but they’re not that shiny, glittery, metallic frost that you’ve experienced in the past.  Instead, you get a lush, rich texture that shapes your lips to perfection.  This wonderful, full on formula presents a look that is current and sophisticated.  As with the new creams, the new satins look best when partnered with a line smoothing lip primer.

Newbury street

Newbury Street

This is a natural, neutral pink with a warm, yellow undertone that compliments most complexions who want the most subtle finish for their lips.  The rich texture gives a matte shine that supplies a finished look, even though it enjoys a quiet color.  I usually apply this to slightly warmer skin tones but I still keep it in my own makeup bag. It looks great even r with my cooler skin tone, on casual jean days.

Highland Park

Highland Park

This perky pink color has cool, violet undertones.  It’s fervently feminine color is so much fun to wear. It is especially appreciated on warm summer nights, shopping in the city or trying to create a festive, holiday mood. One of my absolute favorites in my personal makeup bag.  Don’t forget to pop your primer in the same bag.

Bourbon street

Bourbon Street

This is a beautiful, warm coppery color, rich with yellow undertones. It’s deep velvety color and creamy satin texture inspires a look of confident, capable style.  Very smart and sophisticated.  It completes the look you want when transitioning to a cozier autumn wardrobe.  Great for a professional look or mastering your overall finished look.


At Elizabeth Renee Esthetics Skin Care Spa, you’ll find 30 new shades in pout perfect colors and textures.

Shop our online store.   Enter NEW in the search field to view all 30 new shades.


Peels that Reveal

Peels that Reveal

Sun exposure, acne or just getting older can leave your skin tone uneven, wrinkled, spotted or scarred. If you want your skin to look smoother and younger, consider a chemical peel, which uses a chemical solution to smooth the texture of your skin by removing the damaged outer layers.  A chemical peel is one of the least invasive and most economical ways to improve the appearance of your skin. Although chemical peels are used mostly on the face, Glycolic Boosters can also be used to improve the skin on your back, chest, arms or legs.

You can improve:


What are chemical peels?

Chemical peels contain different chemical solutions to produce a separation and peeling of the outer layers of the skin which stimulate the production of new cells. They vary from very light and superficial to medium and more intense medical grade peels. The type of the peel recommended will depend on your skin condition, type, and desired result. The skin’s reaction to the chemical peel can be imperceivable (you can go out to dinner after), a mild flaking or similar to the peeling you would expect from an intense sunburn.  Medical peels may result in extreme redness, scabbing or peeling and may require some down time.
At Elizabeth Renee Esthetics, we prefer a series of gentler peels performed in succession, rather than one stronger peel that requires down time. For best results peels may be done weekly or bi-weekly for a limited period of time. Milder peels may be done monthly in combination with your facial.

Exfoliation is an important tool to stimulate fibroblasts and create new collagen, as well as stimulate cellular turnover to fool your skin into behaving like younger skin. But, there have been studies indicating that chronic inflammation caused from too many chemical peels can break down the skins protective lipid barrier, leaving it vulnerable to irritation and the production of free radicals. If the skin is irritated all the time, it is an indication of free radical damage which can change the DNA of the cells and age your skin even faster. Chemical peels are high in demand now, but you don’t want to be exfoliating and peeling all the time.


Also, keep this in mind when choosing your home exfoliation program.  Often clients look for glycolic, salicylic or retinol products that contain very high dosages. The idea that stronger is better may be aging your skin. Trust an esthetician to evaluate your skin and prescribe optimum dosages and an exfoliation program that fits your individual skin type. If your skin seems red or constantly irritated you should discontinue your current approach and consider something milder.
At ELIZABETH RENEE ESTHETICS, we offer several different types of light to moderate chemical peels to fit everyone’s skin care needs such as:

    A very gentle, hydrating peel based on pancreatin enzymes. This a smart enzyme only dissolves dead skin cells to minimize irritation and discomfort. It’s great at freshening and hydrating dry, sensitive skin.
    A light exfoliating peel which combines Vitamin C with antioxidants derived from cranberries, and a small amount of skin brightening lactic acid. Perfect for smoothing and rehydrating dry, dehydrated skin.
    A moderate blend of pore clearing glycolic acid plus antibacterial salicylic acid. This peel helps soften oil and clear the pores to increase the effectiveness of extractions. Also speeds the healing of mild acne.
    This moderate peel is very effective for brightening skin and maximizing hydration levels to help correct uneven pigmentation while softening fine lines. Green Tea provides soothing anti-aging anti-oxidants.
    A 30% Vitamin C peel blended with active fruit enzymes creates an effective brightening treatment to plump, hydrate, and reduce sun induced pigmentation. May be combined with Bio-Brasion exfoliation.
    This Vitamin A peel done regularly, helps stimulate reorganization of cells in the epidermis as it reinforces the dermis. Wonderful for both resurfacing and rejuvenation to combat both ageing and acne.
    20% or 35% depending on the skin type. This is the perfect peel for deep exfoliation, pore clearing, and reducing acne causing bacteria. An integral part of a problem skin facial.
    Thorough, consistent exfoliation with no irritation or inflammation. Crystal and chemical free, this non-invasive technique uses water and ultrasonic technology to gently lift off superficial dead skin cells.
    State-of-the-art microdermabrasion using a gentler wet/dry technology. It’s crystal-free and combined with mild chemical peel exfoliation to reveal brighter, clearer and smoother skin.
    More aggressive than Bio-Brasion, this chemical free skin sander wears down peaks and builds up valleys in the skin: minimizing sun damage, smoothing fine lines and retexturizing. Reserved for stronger skin.
    Combines two very gentle peels, ultrasound exfoliation and smart enzymes, to get a more advanced result that is appropriate for sensitive skin types which are clogged, dehydrated or keratinized.
    Combines Microdermabrasion with Lactic Acid for unsurpassed brightening and resurfacing to treat sun damaged skin. Diminishes ashiness, softens pigmentation and smoothes fine lines and uneven texture.

You should not have a chemical peel if you:



After Your Peel:

You may be more sun sensitive, so limit sun exposure for at least one week before and after your peel. You should use a daily sunscreen/moisturizer with broad spectrum UVA/UVB protection with an SPF of 30 or higher. Avoid strenuous exercise for at least 2-3 days, as perspiration may irritate the skin. When washing your face, do not use a scrub. Use a gentle detergent free cleanser that contains soothing Aloe Vera extracts and avoid wearing foundation during the day if your skin is actually peeling. Opt for a layer of Evening Primrose Oil and Borage Seed Oil which you’ll find in Elizabeth Renee’s Environmental Protection serum to reduce irritation and visible peeling. Do not “help” your skin peel with a scrub or AHA for the first few days. This avoids premature skin cell removal which could cause scarring or rashes. Do not have any other facial treatments for one week after your peeling is completed. Although the application of an Azulene Soothing Gel Masque at home, or for ultimate soothing a Seaweed Nourishing Masque (listed under facials when you book online) at the spa, will restore comfort and instantly super hydrate your skin. You may resume the use of a retinol, alpha-hydroxy acids (AHAs) or a mild scrub upon the advice given from your esthetician.











How to Hydrate Within Your Skin

How to Hydrate Within Your Skin

Hydration is an indisputable part of all skin care treatments and home care products.  Hydration provides benefits to all skin types regardless of their skin type.  Hyaluronic Acid, Aloe Vera, Panthenol, Glycerin, Sodium PCA and many different sugars heave long been known as effective hydrators that provide precious moisture to the skin.   Because hydrators are well known as being effective moisturizers they are readily accepted by consumers as a way to get water into the skin without adding emollients or occlusive oils which may or may not be indicated.  But, the way we think about skin hydration is changing.  We have discovered that long term cellular hydration means more than just introducing moisture to the skin.  You need to be able to get that moisture inside skin cells where they can provide positive changes to the skin.

It has been discovered that there are little water channels found in the membrane walls of skin cells.  These are responsible for allowing moisture to pass through to the cell’s interior. They are called aquaporins. These membrane-channeled proteins regulate and facilitate water molecules to be transported through the cell membranes.  Because of this discovery, we now  understand how the cell’s internal plumbing system transports not only water, but also glycerol, urea, natural moisturizing factors etcetera, through the epidermis.

Like other skin proteins, the number of these water channels decline with age.  You may be hydrating your skin, but it’s possible that little water is actually being delivered inside the cells. This leaves skin looking flat, dull and lackluster.

The good news is aquaporins can be activated and rebuilt.   Molecules from a Brazilian tree called Piptadenia Columbrina increase the presence of aquaporins up to 11 times within hours of application, repairing the damaged stratum corneum and re-densifying the dermis.  With continued use the presences of other humectants further hydrate the skin.

A great source of this performance ingredient is found in Elizabeth Renee’s Revitalize Cell Therapy serum, which includes Piptadenia Columbrina as part of its A-list of revolutionary anti-aging ingredients, and works best when applied daily.  For a concentrated boost of Piptadenia Columbrina you should try a Cell Youth Facial which uses micro-current to aid in further penetration of this hydration stimulating ingredient deep into the skin.



What’s So Important about Skin Hydration?

What’s So Important about Skin Hydration?


Water is the basic substance in our skin and throughout our body that transports vitamins and nutrients to skin cells.  This keeps them plump, healthy, alive, resilient and younger looking.  In order for your skin to protect itself from UV radiation, micro organisms and toxic agents, it must be kept adequately hydrated. Hydrated skin will remain flexible and allow your protective barrier to remain intact. If skin is broken, environmental factors can damage our bodies and cause exacerbated water loss, feeding a cyclical pattern of more damage due to further dehydration.

The primary way one can make sure that their skin is well hydrated is to drink 6 to 8 glasses of water or fluids without caffeine daily.  Caffeine should be avoided as it acts as a natural diuretic which takes fluid away from skin.  Skin hydration is very important no matter what a person’s age or skin type. This is true even if you have oily skin.  Oily skin may have a layer of sebum on the surface, yet could be dehydrated underneath.  This lack of moisture in the skin means it’s protective barrier has been compromised.  The result is skin that is less able to defend itself against irritation, inflammation and an onslaught of bacteria.  So, drink up.

Beyond drinking water, you need to wear a hydrating moisturizer every day.  Many skin types get oilier during the summer.  This doesn’t mean you can skip your moisturizer, it just means it might be time to change your moisturizing formula. Try a lighter formula that focuses on humectants.  These are ingredients that don’t add oil.  Instead they have a special talent for grabbing onto moisture and holding it in the skin. Some of the best humectants include glycerin, glycolic acid, sodium lactate, sodium PCA, aloe, honey and seaweed, but the superstar of all humectants is hyaluronic acid.


The reason Hyaluronic Acid is the superstar is because of it’s amazing ability to hold onto about 1,000 times it’s weight in water.  Hyaluronic acid is a natural component of the skin’s dermal layer and gives skin a plump, fresh look.  It supports all those important skin firming collagen and elastin fibers you keep hearing about. It also supplies a medium for water to feed cells as well as support other master cells that are responsible for the manufacture of collagen and elastin.

In skin care products Hyaluronic Acid is made up of very large molecules that have difficulty penetrating the skin.  Studies have shown however, that applied serums containing hyaluronic acid can draw moisture transdermally from the lower layers of the dermis.


Humectants are key ingredients in cleansers, lotions and serums that hydrate the skin by attracting water like a magnet, locking in moisture. Chemically speaking, humectants form hydrogen bonds with water molecules. Humectants are extremely important in keeping skin soft and supple.

Humectants also draw water up from the dermis (the second layer of skin) into the epidermis (the outer layer) and, if humidity is above 70 percent, they can even draw in moisture from the air.  Humectants increase the amount of water that the stratum corneum (the outermost layer of the epidermis) can hold. This helps repair dry, cracked skin by providing maximum hydration and reducing skin irritation.

Some humectants also encourage exfoliation, by dissolving the glue that holds surface skin cells together. Then they act as a barrier by preventing outside chemicals from making contact with the dermis.


When the weather is dry, particularly in winter or in arid climates, humectants can actually pull moisture away from the skin. Using a moisturizer that contains occlusive ingredients can counteract this loss of moisture.  Occlusives are generally richer in texture and more oily by nature. Occlusives help the stratum corneum retain moisture by creating a barrier layer of lipids.   Emollients help to soften the skin as well as providing this same type of barrier. Lipids are a natural barrier that helps protect your skin against dehydration.  There are ingredients like dimethicone and Shea Butter which mimic the natural lipids your skin should be producing.

Some new ingredients will actually stimulate your skin’s ability to produce more lipids. One such ingredient is a derivative of rosemary extract called ursolic acid, which is also a great antioxidant.


Your cleanser, toner, exfoliant and masque can all contribute to hydration or dehydration depending on your choices.  Choose your cleanser to match your skin type.  How much emollients vs. humectants do you really need?  Alcohol free toners that contain Sodium PCA or Seaweed extracts are great hydrators, without adding occlusive ingredients.  Moisturizers often contain a mix of emollients and humectants.

If you’re looking for the most effective humectant providing products you’ll find them as serum based. A respectable hydrating serum contains the right dosage of hyaluronic acid.  Products that claim 100% hyaluronic acid are just not being accurate.  Since hyaluronic acid is a solid, 100% hyaluronic acid would also be a solid which is very difficult to get into the skin.  You’ll probably find hyaluronic acid listed as sodium hyaluronate.  Sodium hyaluronate is the salt of hyaluronic acid and it has a much lower molecular size. This gives it the ability to penetrate skin when applied topically, which is why it works in creams and other potions.


One of the best reasons for splurging for a facial is because this gives you an opportunity to have an expert work with your skin for an hour or more.  This way she can make superior recommendations on which products to choose and how to get the best results for your skin.

You just can’t revive or rehydrate dead cells.  Having a spa strengthened peel is the best way to exfoliate away those dead or very dehydrated cells on the skin’s surface.  This will reveal those younger, fresher, well hydrated cells underneath.  For most skin types, peels are the most productive step of the facial.  Then your skin is ready for steam, super humectants and valuable repair factors that create that extraordinary complexion we all crave.