Product knowledge; FruitCocktail moisture fluid

DSC04830FruitCocktail moisture fluid is an anti-aging moisturizer that goes on thin yet finishes with a satiny, protected feeling.  It incorporates plant stem-cell technology and active extracts from fruit to provide new ways of protecting the skin from aging while helping it to renew itself more perfectly.  This non-comedogenic formula is an answer for acne sufferers as a solo moisturizer over treatment products and it also great for any skin type used alone or layered with other moisturizing treatments.

The starring ingredient in this formula is apple stem cells.   Plant stem cells, like human stem cells, have the ability to regenerate other cells when co-mingled.  Laboratory in-vitro (test tube) tests have shown this to be true with this ingredient.  These apple stem cells have been extracted with a new PhytoCellTech™ process from a rare swiss apple, Uttwiler Spatlauber, noted for its longevity and active botanical properties.  This is ingredient is now popular in many over the counter products but the way it is combined to be most accessible to the skin is what makes this formula more active.

To enhance the activity of the formula is the addition of rhubarb root extract.  It contains the rhaponticin molecule the activates PPARy, a receptor that stimulates the growth of skin cells and also stimulates the production of skin lipids to protect against moisture loss.  These actives are suspended in coconut endosperm, the embriotic fluid from coconut rich in RNA, growth factors, minerals and vitamins to revitalize the skin and maintain its fluids.  Sodium hyaluronate, the key moisture binding component of skin cells, helps “fix” the moisture into the skin.

To protect against losing this increased moisture, Blueberry seed oil from the high bush berry, vaccinium corymbosum from the state of Washington, is added.  It is fresh harvested, cold-pressed and naturally filtered through diatomaceous earth. Full of nutritious Omega-3 fatty acids, skin healing chlorophyll and vitamins A & E, it has added benefits of soothing and nourishing the skin.  Karite Fruit oil, the remaining oil from the refinement of shea butter, adds silky protection against moisture loss also.

Extracts from the olive are used to emulsify and add silkiness to the product along with fine, non-hazardous silicones.  More importantly, these two help to penetrate the primary ingredients of the formula into skin causing them to remain active.  This moisture fluid is very different then the normal stearate-laden waxy moisturizers that just lay on the skin; it actually becomes part of the skin’s natural protective layer.

 

Product knowledge; Bio-Tanical and EmolUlite cleansers

DSC04872Bio-Tanical Conditioning Cleanser is a cleansing lotion that softens, calms and improves the skin’s ability to renew itself all the while deep cleaning away dirt, excess skin oil and/or make-up.  This highly unique formula massages in creamy then, when splashed with water, foams to allow all to be rinsed away.  The skin feels smooth, protected, not-tight yet super squeaky clean.  Recommended for all skin types.

Healing rosehip oil extracted from the wild rose Rubinginosa is the starring active ingredient in this formula.  Highly prized for its ancient tradition of healing, its natural vitamin C content soothes the skin and promotes skin cell renewal.  Co-starring is organic Amaranth grain protein (gluten-free) as a natural foaming peptide that is nutritious for the skin.  Peptides are mini-proteins that occur naturally in the body as a by-product of cellular breakdown and act as redirectors telling the skin to renew itself.  Introducing additional peptides signals increased renewal.

The formula is also bumped up with plant extracts to help sooth and heal.  Olive leaf, Epilobium, and Plantago Laceolata extracts act as natural antibiotics, anti-oxidants and moisturizers.  Horse Chestnut, Birch bark and Ginkgo Biloba support the production of collagen and elastin in the skin, that supportive, anti-sag lower layer.  All ingredients together help maintain and encourage healthy, firm and lively skin.

DSC04882EmolUlite Lipid Cleanse is a non-comedogenic “oil” cleanser that deeply cleanses and softens the skin while maintaining and restoring the skin’s natural protective barrier.    Styled in the fashion of old world cleansers, this natural shake-n-pour formula is unusual in that it is self-emulsifying allowing all the benefits of conditioning, protective lipids yet leaves the skin feeling clean.  It is recommended for normal to dry skins, as a make-up removal first cleanse and also for impacted acne skins as it helps to soften and dissolve blackheads.

This very simple natural product features squalane, a non-oil lipid that is extracted from olives.  Squalane occurs naturally in our own skin’s sebum and is key in helping to form the protective lipid barrier in our skin that wards off potential infection and environmental damage.  Another helpful lipid that is included is blueberry seed oil.  The high bush berry, vaccinium corymbosum from the state of Washington, is fresh harvested, cold-pressed and naturally filtered through diatomaceous earth. Full of nutritious Omega-3 fatty acids, skin healing chlorophyll and vitamins A & E, it soothes and nourishes the skin while helping with the cleaning process.  Think; oil dissolves oil in the same way that one would clean the oxidized dirt in a cast iron pan with some vegetable oil.

To emulsify the oils to help remove the excess and heavier oils, organic vegetable glycerin is included.  As a natural sugar it forms a lotion consistency when mixed with oil.  Also included is sulfosuccinate, a very gentle foaming emulsifier derived from naturally occurring succinic acid.  This grassy, blueberry smelling product is as delicious to smell as it is to use.

Pumpkin and Maple masques; cold weather skincare

pumpkin maples

In the cool weather we are attracted to eating all those spicy, golden hued foods.  There is a reason for that; spices warm up the body and the beta-carotene that makes that golden color strengthens our inner workings.  And so it is with the care of the skin; warming it up in cool weather helps it to stay strong and less dry.  Just in time and just released for the season are my two at-home facial masques that enliven the skin for the coming months of cold.

Pumpkin masque photo

The Pumpkin Creme Masque is an at-home “peel” that dissolves the build-up of dead skin cells while moisturizing & warming the functions of the skin to energize natural cell renewal.  How does it do this?  Pumpkin contains natural enzymes that recognize protein and consume it (ever notice how smooth your hands are after carving a jack-o-lantern?).  Concentrated organic pumpkin puree targets dead skin cells to dissolve them leaving the skin super-smooth and ready for action.  A blend of alpha-hydroxy fruit acids – glycolic, lactic, tartaric and citric from grapes, lemons, passionfruit and pineapple –  work at loosening the dead cells first by dissolving the glue that holds them to the skin.  Sugary triglycerides extracted from coconut and palm kernel oils sooth and moisturize the skin while organic essential oil of cinnamon and extracts from autumn spices stimulate blood flow and warm the skin.  Moisturized well afterwards, the skin just glows!  See an at-home facial protocol at the end of this post.

maple masque dual imageMaple Jolt Masque energizes the skin to renew itself, softens the appearance of age and increases hydration.  How does it do this?  Maple syrup contains natural enzymes that, when applied to the skin, soften the upper layer “plumping” the skin to receive the benefits of additional ingredients.  This masque contains concentrated maple enzymes to triple up on the work.  Extracts of coffee and cacao (chocolate) are blended in to stimulate blood flow; more rapidly circulating blood carries oxygen to the skin and healing nutrients through the tissue that helps delay age and fight off environmental damage.  Also included are Glycoproteins, a combination of amino acids and peptides derived from yeast, that boast the oxygen content in the skin as well as energizing new cell production by enhancing the production of adenosine triphosphate (ATP), the skin’s natural get-up-n-go electrical charge.  Additionally the GPs are moisturizing along with Beta-glucan, a sugary substance extracted from mushrooms.  Applied to clean skin and left in place for 10 minutes, this is a delicious and calorie-free cold weather treat!

AT-HOME FACIAL:

  1. Cleanse skin well using the cleanser suited to your skin type; Purify Frothing Cleanser, Bio-Tanical Conditioning Cleanser or the EmolUlite Lipid Cleanse.
  2. Smooth on a light layer of Pumpkin Creme Masque avoiding the eye area and lips.  For sensitive skins leave on no longer than 5 minutes.  For other skin types, up to 10 minutes.  Splash off rinsing completely.
  3. While skin is still damp, smooth on a medium-thin layer of Maple Jolt Masque.  Leave in place up to 15 minutes.  NOTE: this masque is enhanced by wearing in a steamy environment; reclining in a bath, wear in the shower or put your face over a bowl of hot, steaming water.  Splash off.
  4. Moisturize immediately while skin is still damp.  Suggestion:  Use a pumps worth of Glow followed by your moisturizer of choice.  WOWWIE!

NOTE:  it is normal for the skin to redden a bit or a lot with either of these masques as they stimulate the flow of blood-which is the point!  Redness will disappear within 1 hour.

Natural vs. holistic ingredients; a formulators perspective

natural-vs-chemical-ingredients

The designation of “organic” or “natural” may not be the complete measure of what makes a great skincare product.

Consumer awareness; it’s a wonderful thing!  Joining our interest in food purity is the resurgence of awareness in personal-care product purity.  We need to take charge of own health so this is a great consciousness to have, especially considering how really unhealthy many personal healthcare products can be.  THUMBS UP!!

It’s this very consciousness that got me interested in making my own skin care and cosmetics products some 35 years ago [Yes, I am that old].  I independently studied ingredient toxicity, ingredient purity and the benefits of any natural ingredients that I could personally locate. I started making products myself, I tried out the European “clean” skin care products, I tried multi-level marketed simple products and I tried out & demonstrated the health food store brands.

Despite the healthy natural ingredients of all of these products I tried, my skin did not do well.  You see, like many people reading this, my skin has come deficits in the way it functions so many whole ingredients clogged it or created allergic reaction.  Darn.

It was at this point that I began informally studying cosmetic chemistry.  I was able to consult with chemists and I read everything I could get my hands on including the timely studies of dermatologists.  Turns out that often times what is helpful for our bodies to take internally may not helpful applied to the surface of the skin.  So it seems that the designation of “organic” or “natural” may not be the most complete measure of what makes a great skincare/cosmetic product especially where a needed therapy is concerned.

The designation of “organic” or “natural” may not be the complete measure of what makes a great skincare product.canstockphoto1069623

I prefer a more holistic approach to formulating skincare and cosmetics.  This means that the ingredients and ultimately the finished product is designed to work with the natural functions of the skin and each individual body [at a deficit or not] rather than work against it or causing the skin to fight back with an allergic reaction.  In the same way that sustainable agriculture is even more inclusive than simply a designation of “organic”, holistic formulations incorporate ALL the important elements of skin health; organic/ natural, non-toxic, skin-accessible and change-creating.

Holistic formulations incorporate ALL the important elements of skin health; organic/natural, non-toxic, skin-accessible and change-creating.

Consider these measures to see if a face care or cosmetic product really works to address your skin’s needs and your over all body health.

  1. Are the ingredients hazardous in some way?  The list is endless but here are the top few to avoid.  Paraben preservatives (they mimic estrogen when absorbed into the body so are linked to causing breast cancer), many sunscreen chemicals such oxybenzone (linked to causing cancer), coal-tar (causes cancer), ingredients with “DEA” at the end of the word (reacts with other ingredients to create a carcinogen), hydroquinone (a skin bleaching agent that is banned in other countries because of reproductive toxicity and is a potential carcinogen), formaldehyde or Imidazolidinyl Urea and DMDM Hydantoin (which convert to formalehyde in the skin – causes cancer)… Click here to link to the Environmental Working Group’s Skin Deep website to search cosmetic ingredients.
  2. Are the ingredients potentially irritating to the skin?   Irritants can cause the immune functions of the skin to engage creating allergic reactions OR can cause the skin to reject the product disallowing any benefits it may contain.  Anybody can be sensitive to any ingredient but here are a few of the most unsuspecting irritants; propylene glycol, sulfates, seaweed/kelp extracts, sunscreen chemicals, artificial fragrance, raw forms of vitamin C, TEA preservatives.
  3. Are the ingredients potentially acne-causing/congesting to the skin?  Avoid any ingredient with the spelling “myristate” or “myristyl” or any with the spelling “lanolin/lanolate” or waxes or sticky vegetable oils such as peach kernel, olive, sesame, avocado or coconut or natural vitamin E or dyesClick here to read and/or down load the complete list.  Also click here to read about skin types that are more prone to clogging.
  4. Are the ingredients “active” and “bio-available”?  Will they work with the skin to stimulate it to do what it does when it is most healthy & youthful? These are some of the currently available most active ingredients produced with modern technology; peptides (proteins that link with the skins existing proteins to enable healthy tissue regeneration), plant stem cells (bio-active cells that stimulate the growth of human skin stem cells), vitamin fractions (vitamins refined in the laboratory to be most active, available and non-irritating – L versions when possible), refined organic plant extracts (purified and refined ancient traditional medicines), minerals (the same that are present in our own body are helpful in a formula to maintain the integrity of the skin).
  5. Does the product have a good delivery system to get the ingredients into the skin to be utilized? Are they active just touching the surface of the skin or do they need to be penetrated to lower levels?  These are things that only your aesthetician or formulator can tell you because this is where chemistry and the secrets of the trade come in to play.  Things we consider:
  • Is the pH correct to allow the skin to receive the treatment; higher pH to clean the skin, lower pH to penetrate, lower still to exfoliate?
  • Are the ingredient particles small enough to penetrate the skin to activate the under lying functions?
  • Are the ingredients large enough to coat the skin for protection?
  • Do the base ingredients act as a “solvent” to soften the pathways into the skin to carry the actives deeply?

All of the above is simplistically stated because…. there is another aspect to consider in a product.  The sales of skincare and cosmetic products is a billion dollar industry trying to capture each of our attentions from an aesthetic point of view.  The color, the packaging, the smell, the texture are all part of what makes our senses engage to use a product.  Even more than if it works, to many of us the sensation and the ease of use is of utmost importance.

Next time you considering purchasing a product check yourself; are you buying because you think it will create a lasting change of health in your skin or is it a purchase that fills some need of comfort and promise.  Either way, it is wise to be informed.

Jane  see Euchlora products here