In their latest blog the founder of Simple As That, Danielle Glover explains everything from SPF ratings to the best way to use sunscreen. Danielle is a compounding pharmacist with many years experience in cosmetic chemistry. Her brand Simple As That is hugely successful because of it’s simple formulas, making skincare easy and affordable.
What does SPF really mean?
SPF stands for Sun Protection Factor and the number beside it indicates how well the sunscreen protects skin from sunburn. In other words, it’s an indicator of how much longer it takes untanned skin to begin to redden…
The Simple As That Natural
Sunscreen has been pharmacist-formulated to safely provide
broad-spectrum protection from the suns rays using Zinc Oxide as its
active ingredient. This SPF 30 natural sunscreen lotion also contains
Green Tea and Rosehip Oil (well known for their antioxidant properties)
as well as their signature ingredient, Red Raspberry Seed Oil (known for
its natural protection against UVA and UVB rays).
This light-weight mineral, natural sunscreen is pure vegan-friendly,
non-greasy and, preservative-free perfect for both face and body and
able to protect the whole family.
There’s been a huge surge in interest in
microcurrent lately. Boasting effects like instantly lifting and sculpting the
face has women flocking for treatments as an alternative to more invasive
I often get asked ‘what is microcurrent?’
and ‘how does it work?’
What is microcurrent?
Basically microcurrent is a low-level current, to give instant and
long-lasting anti-aging results. The application is soothing as it works
sub-sensory and helps attain and maintain healthy skin with quick lift results.
I often tell clients it’s perfect before an event!
Originating from medical practitioners in the 1970s, it has been approved by the FDA since the 1980s as a muscle simulator. Microcurrent was discovered when doctors were looking for a solution to Bells Palsy nerve-paralysis and sagging facial muscles. Microcurrent was perfect for retraining skin muscles to lift the skin.
How does microcurrent work?
So, how does it work? Gentle
waves move through the skin tissue down to the muscles, stimulating ATP
(Adenosine triphosphate) production. This ATP production drives creation of
elastin and collagen to repair skin. When the ATP is increased in the skin it
energizes the muscle, giving a lifted, firmed appearance.
In more technical
terms microcurrent works on Pulsed Monophasic Waveform, which means the shape
of the waves is Modulated Square. Studies show the enhancing effect of
micro-amps on wound healing and muscle recovery as well as amino acid transport
and protein synthesis. The ideal current range is 4 – 300 uA/cm, high currents
over 1000 uA are counter productive and can inhibit protein synthesis. So
technically you want to stay in the range of the ideal current rather than
going higher. This means there is no such thing as ‘strong is better’ when it
comes to microcurrent.
What do we use in the clinic?
This brings me to the point of the device we use at the clinic, NuFace Trinity Professional. Yes it is a hand held device available commercially, but that doesn’t mean it’s ‘not as strong’ or ‘less effective’ than larger machines. The NuFace device provides perfect range of amps output to skin, with a max output of 383uA, and a pulse width 119 ms. The device sends waves effectively into deep layers to stimulate muscles, giving you the optimum results of microcurrent. During application you can experience a mild sensation feeling or no sensation at all.
I recommend the use of this device as part of a professional treatment because I have been trained by the American company and have been shown the best techniques, which I’ve been using for the past 8 years. In the treatment room you get a professional enzyme, antioxidant mask, as well as my European style firming massage, which amplifies the results of the microcurrent. To take it one step further we also offer a treatment that includes the use of Gua Sha first to give a really excellent lift. Our two microcurrent facials, the Hollywood and Gua Sha + Microcurrent facials are perfect for anyone who wants to work on ageing well. These treatments are particularly good for people who suffer from fluid retention in the face and puffiness. They also assist to prolong the effects of fillers and Botox in the face.
What’s the best treatment plan?
is a cumulative treatment, meaning you get best results when getting them
regularly. My clients who receive them monthly still gain the amazing results
of ATP production for skin health, but if you feel like you really need to work
on lifting your skin, we also offer a 10 week course. This involves one express
treatment a week for 10 weeks. The express treatment is cleansing, a quick skin
buff and the 15-20 mins of microcurrent. This gives lasting results of the lift
for around 6 months. As a bonus you also get 2 full Hollywood hour facials when
you pre-pay and book in advance.
These treatments are perfectly suited to all skin types, the only contraindications being pregnancy, pace-makers or metal plates in the body. For more information please don’t hesitate to get in touch with the clinic and we can answer any further questions.
Any of my clients on an anti-acne program will know, that changing their makeup is a crucial step towards clear skin success. There is no point in applying all those wonderful products to heal your skin, only to cover it with heavy makeup that makes you break out.
This is a serious concern for my clients, which is why we provide an acne-safe cosmetics list after their initial consultation. And, why we continue to stock the acne-safe makeup brand Adorn Cosmetics.
Growing demand for anti-acne makeup
According to an article on anti-acne makeup in Professional Beauty, the global anti-acne makeup market is expected to reach US#3.24 billion in the next six years! The reason behind this growth is simply the demand for acne-safe, or anti-acne, makeup products as more people are affected by this problem.
Other key findings in the report include:
Women are the largest section of anti-acne makeup consumers accounting for about 64.3% of the market
65% of the revenue in the anti-acne makeup is earned from products which contain salicylic acid
Asia-Pacific is currently the largest consumer of anti-acne makeup products with 40.2% market share
The largest volume of anti-acne makeup sales (30%) take place in department stores and supermarkets
The truth is, acne is a HUGE market. It’s a skin condition that only seems to be getting worse and more prevalent. This is why we have such big growth figures in the above report.
So why is acne becoming such an issue? Because our busy, stressful lifestyles, hormonal imbalances and gut issues all seem to be at epidemic levels and are all are drivers of acne.
All of these factors are making anti-acne make up the biggest segment of the skincare market. And it is set to overtake anti-ageing skincare, including fillers and botox. Because many of us know there’s no point in having advanced treatments if your skin isn’t smooth and calm.
At the clinic, we stock many brands that target acne, including the new cult Australian brand Roccoco Botanicals. So, if nothing is healing your acne get in touch and talk to a professional. We will help you get your hands on our safe cosmetics list and stop sabotaging your skin!
Retinaldehyde is my preferred choice of Retinal in the clinic because of the vast benefits it has in the skin. There’s no disputing the benefits of Retinol but I’ve been watching for years, not entirely convinced. Mostly because I have never liked the side effects, redness, sun sensitively and thinning of the skin, all things, in my professional opinion do not contribute to building healthy skin.
In the body, we
convert Beta Carotene into Retinol, Retinol into Retinaldehyde, and
Retinaldehyde into Retinoic Acid, a very detailed process! All of these Vitamin
A derivatives serve an important job to the skin but the strongest, most active
form is Retinoic Acid. Retinoic Acid is the only ingredient that requires a
prescription even though Retinaldehyde has a similar activity level. Both
Retinaldehyde and Retinoic acid are 500 times more active than their Vitamin A
counterparts! This means you can use small amounts that give big results
without irritating the skin.
The advantage of using
Retinaldehyde is that smaller amounts (with much higher activity levels) can be
used very effectively when incorporated into a liposome. By doing this, the
penetration is enhanced (an important factor in the use of Retinols because of their
size) and helps prevent oxidation, which also occurs with all Retinols. This means, your skin’s absorption rate
is increased by a clinically proven 600%! So using a less irritating form of
Retinol delivered with a liposome gives much bigger results without the
irritation. When I learnt this was the Osmosis way, I knew it was something I
could get on board with.
Retinaldehyde is so
important to treating skin conditions from acne to texture to ageing. Because
it is the better Retinol, it is safe for everyone to use, even pregnant women.
In the clinic I am stocking a couple of the Osmosis Retinaldehyde serums.
Which serum is right for you?
Calm is the Osmosis
level 2 serum, with a lower percentage of Retinaldehyde to better suit all
skins and the ultra sensitive. You can still get the wonderful cell turnover
benefits of Vitamin A without any irritation. This serum is perfect for someone
starting on a Retinol serum for the first time.
Clarify is the Osmosis Level 4 Retinal serum. Kick acne’s butt with this clearing, anti-aging, healing serum. The perfect balance of Vitamin A to scare acne right off your face all while keeping your youthful, healthy glow. Perfect for very oily and acne skins that want to advance their acne treatment.
Osmosis is a green cosmecutical brand new to the clinic. I chose Osmosis because it has a completely natural formulation while using the best available active cosmecutical ingredients. Using higher quality actives like Retinaldehyde we are able to give our customers the results they’re looking for without compromising the skin and causing inflammation (Inflammation is the kryptonite of healthy skin, making us age faster, read more here). This is the perfect cosmecutical brand for people already using cosmecuticals and wanting a more natural option, clients wanting to try something a bit stronger and for clients with stubborn skin conditions we want to heal faster.
Also introducing our
new Osmosis Pure Infusion Medifacial, a Retinaldehyde infusion treatment suitable for
most skin types to give amazing results in the skin.
Inflamm-aging is the newest buzzword going
around beauty. But what the heck does that mean? Have I finally applied one too
many enzymes to my face and gone mad?! Not yet…
Inflamm-aging refers to low-grade
inflammation in the skin. This can be triggered by internal health conditions
or external factors on the skin.
Internal inflammatory conditions can be
food and gut related, it can often present as Rosacea in the most extreme
conditions. But low-grade inflammation can also play a part in sensitive skin
and histamine responses. Some of the worst cases of stress in clients have
actually triggered a histamine response. I often find people who suffer auto
immune conditions are effected the most by histamine in the skin at times
during stress and auto immune flare ups.
Histamine response presents as red inflammation or hives on the surface
of the skin, most of the time in these cases only a topical steroid will help
bring it down effectively.
Topical inflammation is often caused by environmental or cosmetic reasons. We can do our best to protect our skin from UV damage and environmental pollution with physical sunscreen and antioxidant rich products. Keeping the skin clean is also essential, making sure we are washing off all that makeup and pollution thoroughly at the end of the day can be key to reducing inflamm-aging.
Then we have cosmetic inflammation. I have a lot to say about this. Products and treatments that are very harsh on the skin like cheaper, harsh cosmecuticals, peels, lasers and microdermabrasion all trigger an inflammation response in your skin.
Seriously, put down the retinol/AHA daily combo.
If you are constantly blasting your skin to ‘get better results’ you will end up doing the opposite to it and eventually that smooth, plump look will degrade into a red-hot mess. This will age you faster. I know it’s difficult to pull back in the age of instant gratification but trust me; you want to be thinking about a long-term approach to your skin. My skin motto ‘building healthy skin for life’ means taking care of your skin, nourishing it and not peeling it within an inch of its life.
The best way to avoid inflamm-aging is to look after yourself from the inside out. Try a beauty powder like Vita-Sol to give you plenty of prebiotic gut health. Eat lots of fresh vegetables and healthy fats. Cut out sugars and preservatives. Get a great antioxidant rich skincare routine. One of our favourite brands is Eminence Organic Skincare as it’s packed full of rich antioxidants that will nourish, not strip your skin.
If you feel like you’ve been a bit over
enthusiastic on the skincare and treatments come in and talk to us about how
you can build up healthy, strong skin again. We love helping you build healthy
skin for life.
In the clinic we offer both Gua Sha and Jade Rolling. Both have become hugely popular, but many clients ask me what the difference is.
First though lets talk about Jade. Jade is what Gua Sha and Jade Rollers are traditionally made of. The benefits of Jade include cooling, brightening and the ability to draw out toxins in the skin. I’m aware there are other quartz versions but lets stick with Jade for now. Like anything the benefits of the product come down to quality. You can buy a $20 Jade product and a $80 Jade product, and there’s usually good reason for this. Genuine Chinese Jade costs money, if you’re looking at a $20 version it’s probably not real Jade. You will only get the benefits touted of Jade if you’re using the genuine stuff. So you’re $20 Jade or rose quartz roller probably feels nice but the benefits will be minimal. Back to the benefits of each modality.
This treatment was the first to gain popularity, promising detoxed glowing skin. Usually the rollers are are smooth of both sides and one side is smaller to get around the delicate smaller eye area. The main benefits for rollers is the lymphatic drainage. The Jade itself can have some cooling and brightening effects as well. Although the effects are often less than Gua Sha.
The roller I use in the clinic has spikes on one end and the other is smooth. I always use the roller over a hydrating sheet mask which helps the serum deeply infuse into the skin ‘drenching’ the skin in hydration. Perfect before long flights. The spiky end helps to stimulate collagen and the smooth end gives you some lymphatic drainage. To maximize results I like to follow up with micro-current.
Gua Sha has a much greater effect on the skin for smoothing out fine lines, inflammation and ‘lifting’ the skin. The genuine Chinese Jade that I use in the clinic also has a brightening effect.
It can help calm and even out your complexion, and make it noticeably less puffy, defining your cheekbones, jawline, and brows. The massaging movement (known traditionally as ‘scraping’ ) and jade properties can enhance circulation, de-puff the eye area, and improve skin elasticity. Facial Glow Sha promotes lymphatic drainage and detoxifying, promoting a hydrated and tight complexion.
From my experience in the clinic I believe Gua Sha gives a greater result for facial contouring, especially when combined with an elecronic modality like Micro current because the electric current enhances the effect of the Gua Sha giving you some serious lift.
Probiotics, more than just a buzzword or this weeks hot ingredient. Probiotics have been steadily seeping into our skincare for years now. Some brands are solely based on them and some brands bring out certain products with the feature ingredient.
So what are probiotics in skincare and how do they work?
Just like our gut our skin is a living
organism, which contains microbiome that needs balancing and taking care of. Probiotics
help to balance this microbiome out making the skin function better, which
solves all kinds of skin conditions from aging to acne.
Do they work?
Yes! Probiotics yield great results in the skin, especially from a function point of view. So if your skin is barrier impaired or stressed they can heal the skin for better function. They also help support collagen and elastin in the skin giving skin a plump glow.
Are there different types of probiotcs?
Just like with the products we ingest topical probiotics are also slightly different species.
LaFlore uses two types of probiotics Bifida Ferment Lysate and Saccharomyces Lysate Extract to neutralize surface bacteria, reduce redness and help support collagen and elastin production. LaFlore’s patent-pending technology delivers a diverse matrix of touch-activated live, pre, pro and post-biotics that strengthen and improve the skin’s microbiome and provide time-released actives for increased immune support and optimally healthy skin.
Roccoco uses Lactobacillus probiotics in their Globiotic Serum to reduce the appearance of wrinkles and is anti-inflammatory. This serum enhances skin brightness, radiance and repair. The live probiotics is encapsulated to protect it and for sustained release with delivery to the skin.
Amperna* uses an active probiotic complex, Lactococcus ferment lysate. The probiotic complex infused within Amperna products supports the skin barrier, helping to protect you from aggressions such as environmental pollutants, keep your immune system in check and reduce inflammation. Amperna products deliver good bacteria to your skin gently and effectively. In short, Amperna products create the perfect conditions for your skin to shine. Furthermore, as the probiotics break down on skin’s surface, they create amazing new ingredients for skin, such as hyaluronic acid, peptides and vitamins, as well as increasing the presence of ceramides. *coming soon
Overall probiotics are a new development in skincare that are becoming more and more essential to skin health. Got questions? Fill in our contact form or get in touch viaInstagram for all your skin questions answered.
When it comes to successful skincare, it
all comes down the active ingredients. But it’s not as simple as it sounds. I
choose professional brands in the clinic because those brands have been
formulated with the correct percentage of actives to have not just an effect on
the skin, but also take care of the skin, nourish and reduce inflammation.
Taking care of the skin all comes down to reducing inflammation at the end of
the day. So bare in mind ‘stronger’ is not better.
Deciphering Active Ingredients
Active ingredients are not created equal.
The average consumer does not realize there is more than one version of
ingredients. The most basic example is Vitamin C. For example you have
L-ascorbic acid, ascorbyl phosphate and kakadu plum (to name just a few). These are three vastly
different versions but still Vitamin C. So when a client says to me ‘oh I have
a Vitamin C serum already’ I always ask which one and explain the difference of
the ingredient I am prescribing.
Trying to navigate this minefield of active ingredients as a consumer is almost impossible unless you have a degree in cosmetic chemistry and about a decade’s experience. Its not as simple as ‘going natural’ and looking out for a few choice ingredients. As a skin therapist it’s my job to match the correct products with the correct ingredients to your skin condition. If, as a consumer, you feel like you need to know more about how a product is formulated in detail, you will need to speak to the company directly. Because salons only on-sell products and (most) don’t make our own we can only help so far with deciphering every preservative and ingredient. When consumers want to know details about formulation for natural and/or environmental reasons they really need to speak to the brand and the formulator. Not because the therapist doesn’t know enough, but because we didn’t make the product and it’s not our job to know beyond active ingredients and reading labels to identify anything that might trigger a clients allergies. For example I have clients allergic to lavender and some preservatives.
When it comes to choosing the right active ingredients for your skin I would always recommend getting professional advice (just because your friend is using a 1% retinol serum, it doesn’t mean it’s right for you). But if you want a quick guide here’s my advice:
Serums are where it’s at. If you need to correct a skin condition or add more water hydration (which is pretty much everyone) you need to be using a serum under your moisturiser. A moisturiser alone just doesn’t cut it.
For on trend skincare, and a healthy glow you need probiotics.
To simply age well make sure your day cream has spf 30.
Overall make sure your
skincare is nourishing and hydrating enough. Hydrated skin functions and heals
better. This applies to acne and oily skin as well.
If you’re confused about what you need I am always happy to have a chat in the clinic and direct you to the correct products that you need. You don’t need to book a facial to talk about skincare and the correct active ingredients for you.
Everyone has heard of Vitamin C, but what you may not know is that there are many different versions available. Not all Vitamin C is created equally and the differences can be synthetic, natural and everything in between.
Quite often I’ll recommend a Vitamin C to a client and they quickly reply ‘oh I have one already’. I guarantee they would be nothing alike, especially if they are an over the counter product that hasn’t been professionally formulated. Different C’s treat different skin conditions; also the formula that the C is in could be totally different to the next. For example the Organic Spa C serum also has Black Kohosh in the formula, which helps to control monthly hormonal acne breakouts.
Breaking It Down
There are dozens of different Vitamin C’s
out there. Here are the most commonly used that we stock in the clinic.
AA2G – a very stable version that doesn’t actually turn into Vitamin C until it hits the skin. That means no oxidization in the jar! Which is amazing for lifespan. It’s optimal effectiveness for UV damage repair; protection from pollution and brightening is at 2%. Found in Organic Spa Vitamin C Serum.
Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate – A stable water soluble Vitamin C that brightens skin. Much more stable than just Acorbic Acid. A natural skin saver from UV damage it helps with sun induced premature aging. It’s also badass natural acne killer, at just 1% concentration (yes, 1%) it has strong antimicrobial effects against acne for 8 hours! This is why it’s found in the Roccoco Clarifying C Serum because it fights acne while fading old acne spots.
Kakadu Plum – this plant based Vitamin C has gotten a lot of attention lately for it’s potent natural properties. Indigenous to Australia Kakadu Plum contains 50% more Vitamin C naturally than Oranges. Not only does it help repair UV damage and fight acne like other versions it’s also incredibly soothing. Containing gallic acid (a natural anti-inflammatory), this botanical ingredient helps to reduce redness, inflammation and irritation. Used in Divine Woman Gel Serum for deeply hydration that soothes sensitive skin.
These are just a few examples, as you can see there are many high quality versions of Vitamin C available. In the plant world there are many more fruits that offer natural antioxidant protection. Each contains their own unique antioxidant acids that treat different skin conditions. Next time you’re looking for ‘Vitamin C Serum’ look a bit deeper, ask which version of Vitamin C it contains and their benefits to your skin.
There are lots of different methods and
ideas on how best to do exfoliation in the market. So how do you know which is
best for you? It all comes down to skin type and condition, as well as some
So what are your options when choosing an
exfoliant? First of all knowing your skin type is key; these days most people
are pretty savvy and know if you’re oily/acne or dry/sensitive. There are two
main methods of exfoliation, manual and chemical. When we say chemical we mean
alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs) or enzymes, which are usually plant based. These
chemical exfoliations sit on the skin like a mask and gently dissolve away dead
skin cells as opposed to scrubs, which manually buff dead skin away.
Popular ingredients in manual buffers are ground nuts like apricots and other buffers like argan, rice and olive seed. These are often in a cream or gel base, sometimes with clays included to help ‘mop up’ excess oil in the skin. Some manual scrubs can be left on like a mask to let the clay absorb and treat the skin further. Also sometimes manual scrubs have additional alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs) in them to assist with further cell turnover when left on the skin for an additional few minutes. These two in one manual and chemical exfoliators are great value for money as you are getting a little ‘extra’ treatment of the skin. My favourite are Eminence Strawberry and Rhubarb Dermafoliant and Divine Woman Exfoliating Cream.
In my professional opinion I feel like these exfoliantors are the best. They are fruit acid based with either the above-mentioned AHAs or enzyme. AHAs break down the glue between your cells and work on the surface of the skin to help lift away old cells that are ready to come away from the skin. You don’t need a high percentage of AHAs to achieve this as they only work on the surface and you shouldn’t be red and irritated. Enzymes work deeper in the skin and they digest dead cells and debris as they work in the skin. Sort of like pac man for your skin. You can get a better result with enzymes when you are very oily and congested as they generally are less irritating on the surface of the skin and clean better. Giving a better result, especially for acne skin. Two very effective chemical exfolaints are the Eminence Arctic Berry Peel & Peptide Illuminating System and Eminence Yam & Pumpkin Enzyme Peel.
How often should I be performing an exfoliation on my skin?
Generally once, maybe twice a week is enough for most people. But this will vary, if you’re very sensitive and fine skin, use a very gentle chemical exfoliation once every two weeks or so. For more oily and acne skins you can exfoliate around 3 times a week, especially if the skin is going through a purge. The Roccoco Sulfur Mask is an ideal treatment for disrupted skins because it not only contains effective enzymes but also lots of anti-inflammatory ingredients to calm the skin.
Getting advice from a professional is always
going be the quickest way to choosing the right product for your skin, but
following this guide gives you a great head start.