November 28, 2016

Vitamin A In Skin Care - Benefits or Retinol and Retinyl Palmitate

vitamin A Retinol for acne

VITAMIN A for Anti-Ageing & Acne

Retinol is vitamin A and has been used extensively in skin care since the 1980s. Originally invented and used for the treatment of acne, vitamin A is a powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory. Vitamin A helps to reduce inflammation in the skin and boost rejuvenation making it a potent cosmetic key ingredient in the fight against acne. In more recent time, vitamin A has been most popular in the treatment of sun damage and premature aging. Vitamin A has the ability to boost cell turnover and protects cell DNA from damage. It has been known to actually repair UV damaged cells and reverse the signs of aging. 

Vitamin A comes in different forms and strengths. Stronger is not necessarily better. You know the saying: "Too much of a good thing..." Too much vitamin A in the skin can cause the skin irritation, rashes, breakouts, stinging, itching, burning and skin peeling. Long-term irritation in the skin can lead to tissue inflammation, free radical damage, collagen breakdown, accelerated aging and skin damage resulting in a sensitized skin. So in the case of vitamin A, for long-term skin health benefits, less is more. 

To use vitamin A products correctly, the answer lies in using the correct form of vitamin A for your skin and easing slowly into the dosage and frequency of use. 

Retinyl Palmitate

Retinyl Palmitate is an ester form of vitamin A and is naturally found in your skin. It is a popular cosmetic ingredient in anti-ageing creams because it is better accepted by the skin, more stable when exposed to UV and is less irritating than Retinol. Used in anti-aging creams it can be used daily with no potential side effects yet it is an excellent antioxidant. For people who are retinol intolerant, this is a good substitute. 


anti-aging retinol
Retinol is a stronger form of vitamin A and can produce more dramatic results faster in aging skin as well as acne. The stronger the concentration, however, the more side effects it can produce. When using retinol based serums it's best to use it at night as retinol breaks down quickly when exposed to UV. Start with a low dose and introduce to your skin slowly. Use 1-2 times per week initially, then gradually increase the usage to a nightly use. If at any point you experience inflammation, breakouts, itching burning or stinging, then go back to a frequency where your skin tolerated it well. Always start with a lower dose, gradually increase your skin tolerance before using a higher dose. A low dose would equal less than 0.5% and the highest dose available in skin care without a prescription is 1%. Not many skins can, however, tolerate 1% long-term. So always begin and complete your course of retinol therapy with a lower dose. 

Who should not use Retinol 

skin irritation
Retinol based skin care should not be used while pregnant or trying to become pregnant (just as a precaution). Do not use if your skin is very dry or sensitive, and 7 days before waxing (because it may cause the skin to peel). Retinol needs to be discontinued at least 3 days prior to any intense cosmetic treatments such as microdermabrasion, laser, IPL, skin needling, AHA/BHA or strong enzyme peels. Always use your retinol products at night and use a good broad spectrum sunscreen every day as retinol will thin the skin and make it more photosensitive. 

Retinol is an excellent tool in the fight against acne and aging. It is an excellent antioxidant and helps to increase cell communication to normalize skin function. When used correctly it can provide excellent results but it should be treated with respect to preventing long-term skin damage. Always seek the advice of a professional beauty therapist before using vitamin A products. 

Do you have any comments you would like to add to this article? Feel free to post your comments below.

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Have a beautiful day!

Jana x

October 28, 2016

PROFESSIONAL RESURFACING TECHNIQUES - Which suit your skin the best?

professional resurfacing techniques
There are a number of peels and exfoliating techniques available to professional aestheticians. AHA, BHA, Enzyme, Jessner, TCA, blend peels, herbal peels (combination of AHA and enzymes) Microdermabrasion, Dermabrasion, Derma Blading (shaving). All of these techniques essentially do the same thing, rejuvenate the skin by exfoliation.

The differences are that certain techniques were developed to target specific skin conditions:


AHA peels work on the surface of the skin and can penetrate to deeper layers for deeper exfoliation. Glycolic is great for thickened skin, refining and rejuvenating the skin. Lactic Peels are gentler are best for dryer skin types and wrinkles.

skin peels


BHA peel is best for more oily, congested and problematic skin. Penetrating into the follicles it deep cleanses and dislodges clogging and congestion. 


Enzyme peels are best for more delicate skins that may also be congested. Enzymes work gently to dissolve dead cell build up as well as decongesting the pores. 



There are different types of microdermabrasion methods - crystal and diamond. Hydra-micro-dermabrasion is diamond microdermabrasion with water. Microdermabrasion is similar to lactic peel, so best for milder skin problems. 


Dermabrasion is performed under an anaesthetic by a surgeon who removes the whole surface layer of the skin after first dissolving the skin with an acid, then using a steel rotating brush scrape the skin off.  This requires time off work, medications and sometimes hospitalization. Used to treat severe acne scarring.
medical peels


Jessner, TCA and blend peels are stronger and the strongest are restricted to doctors only, targeting advanced signs of aging and sun damage.


Dermal blading is very similar to shaving + microdermabrasion, providing surface skin exfoliation. Removes fine hair and smooths the skin.


Aesthetic rejuvenation techniques performed by Aestheticians and other Beauty professionals are varied and target different skin issues. Peels work at a deeper level, whereas physical exfoliation techniques work more on the surface.
To determine which peeling/exfoliating technique is best for your skin, talk to a skin care professional.


Do not even contemplate undergoing any of these procedures without fist ensuring your skin is well hydrated and in good condition. You will achieve greater results if your skin is overall healthy and hydrated. 

All of these techniques make your skin sun sensitive, so you absolutely must be using a SPF 30+ sunscreen every day, otherwise you will end up with more sun damage. 

vitamin serumBegin using a good vitamin C serum at least 2 weeks before undergoing any of these procedures, to strengthen your skin and inhibit tyrosinase, an enzyme that is responsible for excess melanin (pigmentation) otherwise you may end up with patchy areas. 

Finally, invest in a good EGF (epidermal growth factor) serum to use post treatment to boost healing, recovery and results.

September 2, 2016

Happy Spring! Skincare and Beauty Tips For The New Season

Enjoy the sunshine, the blooms, the warmer weather and sunny weekends!

It's time to revive dull, dry skin and enjoy a silky smooth and glowing skin!

Spring Skincare Tips:

spring skincare beauty tips
1. Re-assess your skin care. As the season changes, so do your skin care needs. Your skin may go through an adjustment period, or even become more sensitised if you are prone to hay fever and allergies. Swap creamy cleansers and heavier moisturisers for lighter versions. If you do suffer from allergies, choose hypoallergenic formulas to minimise inflammation and reactions. 

2. Time to book in a skin consultation to make sure you are using the best products to support your skin through the transition into warmer weather. Your therapist may prescribe products rich in antioxidants to protect your skin from environmental damage, boost skin renewal with gentle enzymes and select skincare designed for sensitive skin.

benefits of facials
3. Treat your skin to a rejuvenating enzymatic exfoliation 1-2 times per week to slough off dry, dull skin and soften your skin with a moisturising mask to make your skin glow! 

4. Book in for a seasonal facial treatment for the yummiest treat your skin will love. 

5. Time to spring clean your skincare, go through your skincare drawers and throw out any empty containers, old and expired products. 

make up
6. Clean out your makeup bag, throw out any old makeup, especially old mascaras, and update your makeup palette with some fresh seasonal colours. 

Have a beautiful day!

Jana x

P.S. If you would like a one-on-one skincare consultation with me, find out more information on the Virtual Consultation page. 

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