Archive | August, 2014

Sun Safety: Let’s Talk About Rays

14 Aug



We think we’re protecting ourselves when we slather up with SPF 30+, but did you know that most sunscreens only protect against UVB rays and leave us open to damage caused by UVA rays?

Wait, what? Let’s backtrack. Before we talk about what we need to be protected from, let’s define the different types of rays.


The sun is the earth’s source of light and energy. In order to provide us with the things we need to survive, the sun lets off UV radiation as a part of the light spectrum that shines down on earth. These UV rays are classified by length in three categories: UVA, UVB, and UVC.



The longest of the waves, these are divided further into two categories (UVAI and UVAII). These waves account for 95% of the UV rays that reach the earth’s surface, and thus we are exposed to these rays often. UVA rays penetrate the skin more deeply than UVB rays, and contribute to pre-mature aging and wrinkling. It was not suspected until recently that UVA rays were harmful beyond the aesthetic, but it is now understood that UVA rays damage the middle (basal & squamous) layer of the skin and may even initiate skin cancer.


These are the medium sized rays. They mostly reach the outer layers of our skin, and are the primary cause for sunburn and sunspots. All sunscreens provide UVB protection, most pretty adequately. Its intensity, unlike the constant UVA rays, changes depending on season and location.


These rays are the shortest. So short, in fact, that most of them don’t even penetrate the earth’s atmosphere. As of now, no studies have pointed to UVB rays as a problem for our skin.


Because UVB rays and not UVA rays cause the visible damage to our skin, it was long thought that UVA rays were not harmful to us. In light of recent discoveries, UVA rays may be even MORE harmful for us than UVB rays and most sunscreens don’t protect against them! So read carefully, my friends, and when you go out to buy sunscreen make sure you’re getting one with UVAI, UVAII, and UVB protection to keep your skin safe and youthful for years to come!

Beauty From The Inside Out

12 Aug

August is Immunization Awareness Month. 

So why are we talking about it? Because…


True Beauty Comes From the Inside, Out!


And we don’t just mean figuratively… we’re talking literally here, people. In honor of that, these are 5 easy habit changes to get you looking good from within:

1. Eat Your Greens!

Just like your mother told you. And she was right, spinach does make you more beautiful. Green, leafy vegetables contain a slew of vitamins and minerals that improve the radiance, elasticity, and luster of your skin. Want to learn more? Check out this post on Juicing For Your Skin for a complete breakdown of what different fruits and veggies do for you.


2. Get Some Shut Eye

We all know that sleep resets the body and allows us to recharge for another day. But did you know that chronic lack of sleep speeds up the aging process, sometimes as much as a decade?!? Scary. I know. For optimal sleep benefits, try to get 7-9 hours of shut eye per night. This super restful sleep has long term benefits like ramping up collagen production and speeding cell growth, as well as short term benefits (lack of under-eye circles, luminous skin, fewer breakouts).


3. Get. IT. On.

The “O Glow” is not just a myth. Sex is one of natures built in remedies for dull, tired skin. Having sex improves blood circulation, which brings more oxygen to the surface skin cells which are usually the last to be nourished. Not to mention to stress-reduction and hormone-regulating powers of sex. Those benefits leave you with clear, acne free, fresh skin for the long haul.


4. Don’t Touch Those Cigarettes

Smoking is the opposite of sex for the skin. It reduces blood circulation which keeps oxygen from reaching the surface skin cells, leaving them ashen and gray. Over time, the lack of blood flow will cause the small capillaries on the surface of your face to shrivel up and die which leads to bigger problems: wrinkles, numbness, even skin shedding. Blech. Just stop it.

5. Smile!

Or, at least, don’t frown. Keeping your face in a pleasant, neutral state keeps the muscles from tiring out and keeps the skin from wrinkling. Smiling also gives you a detectable glow which makes you look instantly more beautiful. Studies show that even a slight smile makes the opposite sex more attracted to you. So smile it up!

Ingredient Spotlight: Watermelon!

12 Aug

Juicy, Plump, Delicious



The absolute perfect summer barbecue food. Watermelon is sweet, sticky, and packed with hydration. But did you know that watermelon is actually good for… you guessed it… your skin? Yup, it is! Take a look at this impressive list of skin benefits:
  • Rich in Vitamin C, Amino Acids, and Antioxidants

  • Skin hydrating and conditioning

  • Aids the skin in fighting against free radicals

  • Acts as a gentle, natural exfoliator

  • Helps the skin cells retain more water, which plumps and fills in fine lines

  • Makes skin cells more receptive to other ingredients, improving the efficacy of your entire skincare routine!

Impressed by all of the amazing things watermelon can do for you, but not quite sure which products contain it? Here’s a quick list of my favorites: