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Week in Review: March 31-April 6, 2019

Week in Review: March 31-April 6, 2019

This week we were all about giving you tips on selecting Cleansers, Toners and Exfoliating products. And because we like to keep things simple we’ve consolidated all of our posts from this week into one spot to for your convenience. Be sure to catch up with us next week, when we will talk about facial massage tools, masks, serums, eye treatments, lip treatments and moisturizers.

Week in Review


There is no need to break the bank over a cleanser. Cleansers are wash on wash off products. You wash it on to remove dirt, grime and impurities from the skin and then you wash it off. The benefit of the product ends there. However (and there's always a however), there are some things you should consider when purchasing a cleanser.


1) Choose a non-foaming cleanser.

2) Check the labels.

3) Unless you are constantly on the go reenacting the bathroom scene from Desperately Seeking Susan, do your part for the environment and avoid buying cleansing wipes.

Checking those labels is important. We found some natural/organic brands are being tricky about advertising their products as being "soap-free" or as "cleansing milks". And while those were true statements, we found decyl glucoside in the ingredients list. It's not a "bad" ingredient but it is a mild surfactant that can cause the same tightness as regular foaming products.

Do you have a favorite non-foaming cleanser that you can't do without? Share it with us! We are always on the look out for great products!


Yes. You CAN skip the toner.

The purpose of a toner is twofold:
1) Removes excess cleanser
2) Restores the pH of the skin (4.5-5.5)

Let's just state the obvious here; you can remove excess cleanser with water. Plain water.

As far as pH goes, your body can AND will restore the natural pH of your skin all on it's own. However (and there is always a however,) there are some things you can do to mitigate potential pH stresses to the skin.

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1) Consider cleansing with a natural carrier oil like jojoba or grapeseed oil.

Botanical oils are naturally pH balanced to our skin. We LOVE LOVE that!

Avoid using almond, apricot or olive oil. They are high in oleic acid and can cause breakouts/exacerbate current inflammation or acneic skin conditions.

2) Avoid foaming cleansers. Period.

And if you find yourself staring at a sea of toners in your bathroom don't toss them. Non-alcohol toners can make great skin refreshers and toners with alcohol can be used a mild sanitizers for hands and feet. Most toners come in a spray bottle, but if you don't have one make a trip to your local Sally's or buy one off of Amazon and you are GOOD TO GO!

Got questions about cleansing and toning? Just ASK!


So far on our journey, you've been saving money. You're buying inexpensive non-foaming cleansers and you're not even looking at toners, but now we've come to a point where you will want to invest.

Why? Because exfoliation unveils the very best of how your skin can naturally look and feel. You might even be inspired to run around make-up free! Exfoliation removes superficial dead skin cells, allows for deeper cleansing of the pores, increases moisture retention and circulation and smoothes the skin. All of this has a dramatic impact on how your skin naturally looks and feels.


When we are young, 20 years old or younger, our skin cell turnover is very rapid. Turnover occurs on average every 20 days. By the time we are in our 50s the turnover rate can double. This is why we recommend incorporating professional exfoliating treatments like microdermabrasion and/or peels into your skin care routine starting around your late twenties-early thirties. In addition to all of the benefits listed above, these treatments help to reduce fine lines, acne and areas of hyperpigmentation.

This typically entails six treatments back to back, followed by maintenance treatments every two-three months. It's not cheap, so make sure you ask for a package deal for your initial 6 AND for your follow ups. It is also important to watch out for expiration dates. But the easiest way to deal with this, is to create a strong professional relationship with your esthetician. Becoming a great client will get you everywhere in this business.

Let us know about your experiences with micro and peels. And if you have an esthetician you love tell us about her/him.


Yesterday was about investing, but if your not ready for that- no worries. We've got you covered! There is always a work around and in this case we’re going old school with manual exfoliation. Manual exfoliation is the most common exfoliation out there. At-home treatments are inexpensive and relatively effective compared to its professional counterparts.

What we're going to use: Embrace the kitchen esthetician within! It's time to break out the baking soda to make a quick and easy scrub or try using a natural clay to make a mask. We recommend Rhassoul clay.

When to use them: As a part of your evening routine.

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How to use them:

Baking Soda: We love baking soda for a thorough scrub, but you have to RESPECT it. Create a loose paste using water and massage onto skin using a circular motion with the middle two fingers. Perform ten circles in each area and move on. Pay close attention to finger pressure around the cheeks and nostril area. Rinse and repeat TWO-THREE WEEKS LATER. If you have acne, do not follow this method. It can spread bacteria and cause further inflammation.

Clay Mask: Add one part clay to two parts liquid. (We love to use hydrolat, herbal tea or coconut milk.) Blend until smooth apply to face avoiding eye and nostril areas. Leave on for approximately 10-15 minutes and remove with a warm damp washcloth before the mask is completely dry. Great for all skin types.

How often to use them: Every other week is plenty to avoid over-exfoliating your skin. So don’t overdo it.

What to do next: This is the perfect time to put on a hydrating and nourishing mask or follow up with a serum (if you have one) and moisturizer.

Final Thoughts: Consider combining your at-home exfoliation routine with a quarterly or semiannual professional exfoliation service like a peel or microdermabrasion. And just as an FYI, these two services can be combined into one treatment session; however (and there’s always a however,) we don’t recommend this unless you have already been getting these services on a regular basis and/or you are an existing client of your service professional. Trust and experience is key when having this dual service provided.


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Friday was SSB’s monthly Espresso Your Love event. If your local to MOCO and Frederick Counties in MD, mark your calendar for the first Friday of every month from 9am-10am at the Germantown Panera in Seneca Meadows Shopping Center (Wegmans.) Stop by, say hi and snag some Body Butter samples featuring lavender and mint essential oils!

And that’s a wrap! Have a great weekend!

Week in Review: April 7-12, 2019

Week in Review: April 7-12, 2019

Three OTC Products That You Should Swap Out Today!

Three OTC Products That You Should Swap Out Today!