Tag Archives: Skin Care

Winter Skin Care on a Budget

It’s no secret that winter weather can be hard on your skin. One of the reasons is that we often forget to change up our routines to accommodate the change in temperatures. Harsh chemicals used to reduce natural oils in the summer can cause more damage in the winter. Our diets can also greatly impact our skin. With many of the winter holidays behind us, it is time to refocus on what we are putting into and on our bodies, and how those things are adding up to create the perfect storm. Here are a few of our favorite products for correcting and preventing dry skin damage:

Coconut Oil
Cold weather can be very hard on your hair, specifically on your scalp. Sometimes over-the-counter dandruff shampoos don’t help with dandruff, and occasionally they can even make it worse. Dr. Axe (www.draxe.com) says that adding five drops of essential oils like lavender, wintergreen, thyme, or tea tree to two teaspoons of coconut oil and massaging it into your scalp after washing your hair can be a great intensive dandruff treatment! Do this 2-3 times per week to keep your scalp moisturized and your hair feeling soft!
You can also apply coconut oil to your skin at night before going to bed. Be aware, however, that the oil may transfer to your sheets. So you may want to cover the affected area before calling it a night.

Eat Right
By now, you probably know that staying hydrated in the winter is important. You know that you should be drinking water like it’s your second job, and maybe even that a humidifier in your bedroom can help keep your skin hydrated. But did you know that what you eat matters too? That New Years resolution to eat right (and maybe add a few juices into your diet) can help in more ways than one. Fruits like watermelon and apples and vegetables like cucumbers and carrots contain a lot of water. Let them help you get the moisture your body needs to be healthy and comfortable.

Don’t Forget Sunscreen
Just because it’s cold doesn’t mean that your skin can’t be damaged by UVA and UVB rays. Even if the sun doesn’t seem as bright, rays penetrating the clouds can reach your skin. Obagi Medical Skin care products are a great way to protect your skin against the harmful effects of sun exposure. We especially love their Tinted Sun Shield SPF 50 line, available in cool and warm shades for different skin tones. For harsh winter weather, you may also enjoy their HydraFactor Broad Spectrum SPF 30. This sunscreen is a dual-function moisturizer with soothing ingredients. Regardless of which sunscreen you choose, make sure to reapply it every two hours of exposure throughout the day. Check out Obagi’s website (www.obagi.com) for more information on where to find their impressive line of skin care products locally.

Choose Wisely
Some face cleansers have ingredients that strip your skin of moisture. Read the labels, and make sure that what you are putting on your skin (aka the largest organ in your body) will not damage it even further. Look for all natural products and those with soothing ingredients, like oatmeal. We love Briar Mountain Farms (www.briarmtnfarm.com). Their goat’s milk soap is great for sensitive skin (and they are local!). Their soap contains high amounts of proteins, vitamins, and minerals. With plenty of scents to choose from, you can’t go wrong!

Treat Yourself!
Schedule a facial with a skin care professional. If you can’t do that, treat yourself to a facial mask twice a week at home. Our editor uses Innisfree It’s Real Squeeze mask sheets (found on Amazon) and loves them! Choose from trouble care, moisturizing, brightening, and nutritious options. Infused with a blend of herb complex water and ingredients from nature, this real mask adds vitality and energy to your skin.

Virginia Made: The Importance of Self-Care

February is here and we are finally adjusting to writing 2018 instead of 17. It is a month often associated with love and one dedicated to celebrating Black History. As women, there’s one form of love that sometimes finds itself at the bottom of the list. That is self-care. Whether through body, fashion, or art, these women have their priorities in order.

What woman doesn’t dream of soft skin and fragrant products that make you say, “Mmmm…”? Janie Brodie captures that with Herbal Body Blessings in Henrico. Receiving testimonies from customers of how the products have helped them in some way keeps her creating. Janie feels blessed to have her husband, three sons, and goddaughter always ready to pitch in. Body butters, made up of natural ingredients including cocoa and shea butters, combined with scents like coconut lemongrass and honey almond are the company’s best sellers. “Beauty is broad and diverse to me. There is no limit and it can be found everywhere. I find beauty in nature, people, and art. It is truly in the eye of the beholder.” For Janie, self-care involves a cruise to a warm beach. (On Instagram @herbalbodyblessing)

Growing up in England, Nicole Rule became fascinated with garments of her Ethiopian culture. “Even thinking about it now brings back great memories of my mom with a scarf draped over her head as either a fashion statement or to keep warm.” Fast forward a few decades, living in Lynchburg and married with kids, Danicole Accessories was born. Her designs include pieces for infants to adults like headbands, turbans, berets, and bonnets. Nicole also offers specialty pieces such as fascinators, hats, and silk flowers. With a husband and four “love bugs” (five and under) while running a business, life has challenges but Nicole handles them with grace. Her family and serving at church are top priorities while self-care involves sneaking in date night, a delicious meal (dessert included), uninterrupted talk, and a new pair of shoes. (On Instagram @danicoleaccessories)

“I don’t remember having a dream of being an artist, I just was.”

Raised in Lynchburg, Christina (Ball) Davis was homeschooled allowing time to explore her creativity. Growing up in a generation where African-American princesses and strong women figures on posters were few and far between, Christina created her own images. Her (mostly acrylic) paintings reflect emotion through expressive eyes, bold lines, and strong color palettes. Two of the best things about being an artist for Christina are pet commissions and the diversity in creating something unique for each client. Road trips, hiking, good food (Thanksgiving being her favorite holiday), and drinking wine with her new husband are Christina’s ode to self-care. (On Instagram @artistchristinaball)

Written by Faith Jones of The Hill City Handmade.

Healthy Skin in Winter

With a new year before us, it’s time to get away from the bad habits we developed during the end of the year chaos. We don’t know about you, but we’ve noticed that our skin is certainly paying the price. Let’s start 2017 with a fresh, clean slate by committing to taking better care of it with these easy steps:

Put some thought into the products you are using as part of your daily routine. We are in love with charcoal soaps. They help draw out skin impurities and make room for your moisturizer to do its job effectively. It’s also great if your poor dietary choices over the last month (ahem…guilty) are showing as blemishes on your skin. Our current favorite is by Apotheke. The handcrafted bar soap is stirred, poured, cut, and wrapped by hand. To top it all off, it is made with natural ingredients like coconut, olive, and palm oil. Find it on www.apothekeco.com.

obagiOf course, it should be obvious that you need to moisturize. Hydrate facial moisturizers by Obagi Medical are great for rejuvenating the skin after cleansing. It also doesn’t hurt to visit a professional and develop a regime that works best for you. For that, we place all of our trust in the ladies at Skin Care Consulting (www.skincareconsultinginc.com).

Protect the fruits of your moisturizing by taking one extra step before bed. Sleep with a humidifier. Not only will it help with your sinuses and even snoring, it also comforts your skin after a day in the cold, dry air of winter. When you wake up, you will retain some of that moisture in your face, lips, and even your hands.

Make sure you aren’t sabotaging all of your effort by putting the wrong things into your body. If you want that glowing, smooth complexion to return now that all of the holiday cakes and cookies are gone, think of each meal like cleansing and moisturizing. Our favorite solutions in the winter months are adding more salmon to our diets and committing to juicing every day. Try tossing two carrots, a beet, some ginger root, an apple, and just a splash of lemon into your juicer for a drink that will boost your energy and help your skin.

Use an infuser water bottle to really get the serving of fruit that you need every day. An extra bonus? It makes drinking water a lot more satisfying. If you’re trying to cut out soda (which, let’s be honest, everyone should do), this is a great way to ease yourself into the habit of drinking water instead. You should try to drink at least eight 8-ounce glasses of water every day, so add some blueberries and strawberries to those servings and pretend it’s summer!

Meet the Makers: Brigit True Organics

Organic skin products were scarce in the early 2000s. However, even then, Brigitte Rau had a vision of these becoming the new age of skin care. In 2001, Rau created Brigit True Organics (BOT), based in Charlottesville, Virginia. Through this venture, she creates and sells natural body care containing organic olive oil for sensitive skin.

IMG_7155Brigitte, co-owner and founding partner of BOT, understood that not many products were helping the global community with ingredient impact. With this in mind, she stood by creating products that didn’t leave a “footprint” on our planet. All of her skin care products are 100% natural and 74-99% organic. They are great for your skin, and great for the environment too! Even the packaging is green and sustainable to pair with the products.

“As the formulator, my primary goal has always been to find the purest materials and highest quality organic ingredients available”, says Brigitte. “We have followed organic practices since we began in 2001, and are grateful for our loyal customers who appreciate our commitment to quality and purity standards.”

IMG_7157The company offers body lotion, soap, lip balm, skin balm, baby product, and even laundry and cleaning supplies. All of these are now USDA National Organic Program certified. These products can be used for any skin type since they are gentle enough for the most sensitive skin.

“We are recognized as one of the very few true organic body care producers,” explains Brigitte.

The ultimate goal of Brigit True Organics is to create a skin care line that can be worn by every skin and can produce little waste for the environment. This means that BOT’s philosophy goes beyond the life of their products. By supporting sustainable agriculture and green production methods, they join a growing movement of people and companies committed to putting Earth first.

IMG_8038Brigit True Organics’ products can be found at www.brigittrueorganics.com.

P.S. We are giving away a really cool prize pack over on our Facebook page! Check it out!

 

Written by Stacy Shrader

Extraordinary Women: Jordan Kantor

Jordan Kantor, a permanent cosmetic artist at Skin Care Consulting Inc. in Roanoke, is a recent graduate of Painting and Printmaking at Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU). She completed her bachelor’s degree in just two and a half years, and began to pursue a career that complements her artistic background and education. Although she may not follow the path that many expected of her, Jordan is using her talent to touch the lives of women in Roanoke while staying true to the creative muse within. 

After graduating from VCU, what led you to pursue a career as a permanent cosmetic artist in Roanoke?

I definitely started to feel that I wanted to begin pursuing this career during my freshman year at VCU. My mom was a huge an influence, as she began Skin Care Consulting in 2004, but I began to notice similarities in my experiences with art and permanent cosmetics. For example, I gave a lot of attention to detail and was drawn to hyper realistic and trompe l’oeil art. Once I began researching the industry and came across eyebrows, camouflaged scars, areolae, and more I realized that with such precision, one could not tell the difference. I fell in love. I felt that this career was a way for me to impact someone’s life using my knack for detail.

How do you incorporate some of the skills you acquired throughout your education in this process?

Towards the end of my career at VCU I had an independent study with Sarah Faris, a professor who heads the Scientific and Preparatory Medical Illustration track within the Department of Communication Arts. It was very helpful to study the anatomical structure of the face and skin through illustrative note taking, a skill Sarah taught me involving the combination of both drawings and text.

Sarah was one of the few VCU professors that encouraged me to continue pursuing this career. Over the course of my education, there were those who could not see the connection between fine art and permanent cosmetics. Sarah could see this relationship and served as a positive source I could turn to for advice. Her work as an illustrator for medical journals such as Dermatologic Surgery served as confirmation that I had chosen the right mentor.

My work with Sarah served as one of the most empowering moments in my career at VCU. I wish to extend this feeling of empowerment to my clients by giving them a sense of confidence in themselves, obtainable through this artistic procedure.

My experience with color theory proved to be extremely helpful when choosing pigment colors. There are a few differences in color theory for permanent cosmetics. When you are painting onto a white canvas with a bright red paint, it will show up bright red. However, if I implanted a bright red pigment into the skin it has to shine through the layers of the skin, mixing with cool undertones making the end result different than what would seem intuitive.

IMG_5163What is next for you professionally and what other projects are you working on in your spare time? 

I will complete eyeliner training before June with Will Anthony, a world-renowned permanent cosmetic artist. My mom and I are going for 3D areola training in August with Vicky Martin, an artist/trainer from UK who creates the most realistic looking nipples we have seen! I am a member of the Society of Permanent Cosmetic Professionals, which is dedicated to promoting permanent makeup safety, excellence, and professional standards by providing education, certification, and industry guidelines.

In my spare time I like to create little greeting cards for clients to pick up to send to friends and family, or to display around their home. I still am painting on the side, and we are considering having an art gallery set up at Skin Care Consulting to showcase my art somewhere in the future.

If you are interested in learning more about Jordan, or the many skin care and cosmetic services available at Skin Care Consulting, go to www.skincareconsultinginc.com.

Bella Loves: EO Products

We love trying out beauty products and presenting you with our favorite ones! This week, we are really enjoying samples from EO.
EO stands for essential oils. For over twenty years, they have used the aromatic essences of plants, trees, flowers, resins, spices, and leaves to bring customers luxurious, naturally effective body and skin care products made from some of the most exotic botanicals in the world. Their products are certified Organic or Non-GMO, Cruelty-Free, Synthetic-Fragrance-Free, made with organic ingredients, and always scented with pure essential oils.
facemoisturizer_large-02Some of our favorites from their new Ageless Skincare Collection include a coconut cleansing milk with hibiscus and mango seed butter, their Moroccan lava clay exfoliating scrub with papaya and pineapple enzymes, and a hydrating face moisturizer with snow algae and tsubaki. Now, you may be wondering… what exactly IS snow algae?
Snow algae is found in the Swiss Alps. According to EO, “This active ingredient has been clinically proven to stimulate collagen production, improve hydration and smooth wrinkles.”
In this moisturizer, snow algae is blended with more than ten active ingredients proven to heal dry skin, improve hydration, stimulate collagen production and smooth fine lines and wrinkles.
Visit their website for more information on their products and check out our Facebook page this week to win our favorites!

WIN Skin Care Services from Allura!

324 Days of Prizes: DAY TEN!

The winter weather isn’t good for our delicate skin. So to help with that the fabulous team at Allura in Salem is giving away a Microdermabrasion service AND an UltraSonic Facial to one lucky reader (a $160 value!).  Who couldn’t use this?!?!

Visit our Facebook page for details on how to win! Don’t forget to pick up a copy of the December issue for more information on all of the fantastic prizes you can win this month!

WIN prizes from Medi Spa!

bella24 days24 Days of Prizes: DAY FIVE!

Especially this time of year, everyone’s skin could use a little TLC. And today’s prize from Medi Spa in Salem comes just in time! They are giving away a fantastic prize package to one lucky Bella reader: an Obagi Nu-Derm System (a $440 value!) and one FREE skincare consultation (a $125 value!).

Visit our Facebook page for details on how to win! Don’t forget to pick up a copy of the December issue for more information on all of the fantastic prizes you can win this month!