Strength Matters: Why You Need to Know More About Ingredients in Your Skincare Products

How much do you know about the strength and quantity of the ingredients in your skincare products?

Sure, you may read articles that tell you what ingredients to look for, but what about how much of that ingredient is in the product? Or what other ingredients are in that product that may counteract it?

A study reported from Italy titled “A Prospective Study of Anti-Aging topical therapies using a Quantitative Method of Assessment” concluded that the value of “unbuffered” (aka: low pH) Glycolic Acid has been verified and scientifically substantiated to be more beneficial compared to: Vitamins A, C, E, Coenzyme Q10, Lipoic acid, Hyaluronic Acid, Kinerase and Pyruvic Acid.

Why?

Because the antioxidant Glycolic Acid, in its proper strength, has the smallest molecular size, enabling it to penetrate the skin the deepest, rendering it the most effective!

Another study performed on burn patients proved that Glycolic Acid decreased the healing time by 50%. Once again, proving that the antioxidant Glycolic Acid not only protects against free-radical damage, but stimulates new cellular growth faster than any other skin care ingredient.

Be mindful however that the FDA study indicated that all ingredients are not equal. The strength of these products vary dramatically by not only percent but even more importantly by pH.

More is not always better. Here at Academy by Candy, we are always open and honest about the strength of our Glycolic Acid. We use 10% unbuffered Glycolic Acid with a pH of 1.5 in our products. This is why our customers get the best results. (In-office Glycolic Peels are 70% unbuffered Glycolic Acid with 0.5 pH.)

How to Make Your Pores Look Invisible

This is the million dollar question! So let’s talk about why your pores are big, how to reduce the size, and how to make sure they stay that way.

Why are our pores so big?

When our oil glands make too much oil, our pores enlarge. When our pores are enlarged, they clog. The clogged pores then enlarge even more. This vicious cycle creates an unsightly appearance of large pores, which then often fill with debris—becoming white heads or even blackheads.

How do we reduce the size of our pores and keep them that way?

The goal is to first unclog these pores, reduce blackheads, and minimize the appearance of enlarged pores. Next, and most importantly, a good preventative skin care regime must become a routine.

  1. A strong (50%) unbuffered (0.5 pH) glycolic acid peel should be performed first, including a gentle lifting out of the debris, one by one. (No extractor or squeezing, please. This causes scarring.)

2. A daily routine must be implemented of gently cleansing and exfoliating the skin.

3. Use a salicylic acid combined with a low pH (unbuffered) glycolic acid toner. This will be your best preventative solution.

Click here to look at a special kit containing all of these products.

What should we avoid?

Stay away from:

  1. Oily skin care moisturizers
  2. Oily sunscreens

Remember to stay hydrated and healthy, drinking at least two liters of water per day and eating a balanced diet of natural foods. What you eat does affect your skin. Your skin is the largest organ of your body.

What is the Real Cause of Under Eye Circles?

The causes of under eye circles can be as diversified as the cure. The remedy should not and cannot be determined nor corrected without knowing the actual cause. The most important part of this discussion is the diagnosis. 

Cause #1 Weakened Lower Lid Muscle

By far, the most common cause of our dark circles are caused by fat pads protruding through a weakened lower lid muscle. This creates a puffiness or “bags” under the eyes, which in turn can also cause a shadowing making you look tired, unwell, and much older.

To date, there are NO cream remedies. A surgical procedure called a lower lid blepharoplasty will remove excess fat and skin as well as tighten the muscle. The procedure can be performed by either making an inconspicuous incision along the lash line or by making an incision inside the lower eyelid. The results will yield a healthier, younger look.  

Cause #2 Hyperpigmentation

Some causes behind the formation of dark circles are hyperpigmentation of the lower lid skin, which can be caused by many different things such as heredity, aging, stress, lack of sleep, and illness. If the skin is actually hyperpigmented, I recommend my patients use a very light amount of a skin lightening crème. Crème products that contain licorice extract are usually the most effective when combined with a transporting agent such as glycolic acid. Our Hydro Light Plus-10 contains the four most effective ingredients today with the power of glycolic acid. The 10% unbuffered glycolic acid enables licorice extract, salicylic acid, resorcinol, and lactic acid to do their jobs. Without a transporter, the ingredients are lost.

The delicate lower lid skin should always be treated gently using the crème sparingly. Because each individual responds differently to the treatment, the user should be in complete control of how much and how often the crème should be used. The range can be from twice a day to just 3 times a week. Always use just a pea-sized amount.

What is Collagen? And is putting it on your face working?

What is Collagen? Why are there so many skin care products formulated with Collagen?

Let’s take a look at what Collagen really is and why it plays such an important role in keeping our skin looking youthful.

What is Collagen?

Collagen is a protein part of the connective tissue that helps the skin maintain firmness, suppleness, and elasticity.

As we age, the outer layer (or keratin layer) of the epidermis becomes thick, clumpy, irregular, flaky, and dull looking. Conversely, the live (or dermal layer) becomes thin, losing its Collagen and elasticity. When skin loses Collagen, it wrinkles. When skin loses elasticity, it sags.

Can you apply Collagen to your face for results?

With these proven facts, it seems logical to assume that actually applying Collagen to our skin would help reverse some of this aging process, right?

Guess what? It doesn’t! Yet, many cosmetic companies continue to imply that their Collagen-filled skin care products can achieve this anti-aging miracle.

Real Talk

So what’s the real truth? The truth is that by the time we are 30, we will have lost about 30% of our skin’s collagen and elastin, creating wrinkling and sagging. (And as we age, that percentage obviously goes up.)

What can we do to boost Collagen? (AKA look younger!)

Reversing this damage can be achieved by stimulating, or smacking, new Collagen and elastin cells into regenerating.

Products must contain ingredients which are molecularly small enough to penetrate deep into the skin where these collagen cells live. (Those skincare products on the market today contain large molecules of Collagen that are impossible to penetrate your skin.) In addition, these ingredients must be formulated strong enough to smack and reawaken these very important cells.

Glycolic Acid, if formulated correctly and used consistently, is the most effective way to prevent, slow down, and even reverse the aging process of the skin. The key phrase here though is “formulated correctly.”

Always ask questions and study the ingredients of your skincare products. You’re likely wasting your money on products that don’t work.

Self-Love and Skincare (Ali’s Journey Part 2)

Ali scheduled an appointment for a full skin evaluation. She was excited about coming in for a complete skin evaluation and product recommendations. I could already hear a positive sound in her voice. I know just by using my products and seeing a real difference in her skin, she will feel empowered. Empowered will mean that she is now in control and can make a difference in her own life.

Ali’s appointment one week later:

Upon arrival it was interesting to see a little bit of excitement in her gate and an almost warm greeting. It wasn’t her usual “can’t look you in the eyes” greeting. So, just the thought of taking a first step in caring for herself is making a difference already. I saw improvements in spirit, but she still came in quite disheveled.

A complete medical history was taken, including past skin problems and treatments. Ali has a past history of drinking and smoking to excess. She claimed she stopped both about eight months ago. She also denies much sun or outdoor environmental exposure.

At 58, Ali’s skin looks much older with large pores, black heads, poor texture, and a pale skin tone. She also stated she is very stressed and her life is “awful.” It is also clear Ali has some financial problems. This factor alone must be taken into consideration. Our goal is not to simply try “sell” her products she can’t afford, which, in turn, might make her feel even worse. Again, our goal is to help her feel good about herself by making her look better while not feeling guilty about doing so. Self worth is a tricky lesson to learn for most of us.

During our appointment, I taught her how to properly cleanse her face. Since I’m a big fan of exfoliating dead skin, she will also be instructed the best way to do so.

Remember, Ali is not accustomed to spending time on herself, therefore we must keep her skin care regime simple and easy, but effective.

Ali will return to see me in two weeks. She knows can call me personally at any time with questions or concerns she might have.

Stay tuned for updates.

Does Ali sound like you? Contact me to schedule your consultation. In person or email.

Ali’s Journey Part 1