By Kristina Cadwell, M.S., PA-C, Founder & CEO, Vibrant Skin Bar
We have spent the last 12 months in a quarantine cocoon and Summer 2021 is going to be the “Summer of the Butterfly.” It’s time to start slowly expanding our wings and make looking and feeling our best a priority as we emerge.
A sedentary stay-at-home lifestyle with lots of comfort eating may have left us with a few unwanted COVID pounds and wearing masks to protect our lungs has covered our faces with “maskne.” The added stress on the adrenals has left us with dark circles around our eyes and an “all-natural” approach to the beauty routine worked during isolation but is no longer delivering the results we hoped for.
Preparing for a grand debut can seem overwhelming but with a little help, the challenges of 2020 can easily be a thing of the past. To get you ready for Summer, here are my top 10 beauty tips and tricks guaranteed to make you shine!
1. Erase Your Frown Lines.
The stress of the pandemic has created unwanted lines and wrinkles on our faces. With a few sprinkles of Botox or Dysport you can erase lines and enjoy a more youthful appearance in minutes. Clinical studies show us that muscle movements can be directly linked to emotions and when we Botox muscles that create frown lines, we will actually feel happier.
2. Say Goodbye to Cellulite.
One exciting new thing to come out of quarantine is the launch of the first FDA-approved injectable for cellulite. Cellulite haunts women of all shapes and sizes. Dimples on the buttocks and legs are formed by fibrous septi bands and are not something we can easily fix with diet and exercise alone. Topical lotions and scrubs that contain caffeine can temporarily help soften the appearance of cellulite but an enzymatic release with a few tiny injections of QWO can create long-lasting results so you can feel confident in your bikini all summer long.
3. Increase Your Water Intake.
Everyone should be consuming at least half of their body weight in water daily. Springwater is my go-to for its natural energetic mineral content and staying hydrated is one of the best ways to lighten those dreaded circles around the eyes. For those of us that need to lose weight, suppression of hunger and food cravings with adequate hydration is a no-brainer so consume 8-10 ounces of water 30-60min before your meals.
4. Always Make Time for Topical and Internal Vitamin C.
Vitamin C doesn’t need an introduction, it’s a superstar that works in so many mysterious ways. Topically, vitamin C protects our skin from environmental DNA damage and is essential for repairing the damage that has already been done.
Finding a stable medical-grade vitamin C is extremely important. When we consume a diet rich in vitamin C or take a high-quality supplement, we will support our adrenals, brighten our skin and boost our immune system. Some of my current favorite stable Vitamin C serums include SkinBetter Science Alto and IS Clinical Super Serum and some of my favorite Vitamin C rich foods include Camu Camu, Spirulina, and Goji Berries.
5. Shed the Weight.
Letting go of habits that no longer serve us and staying accountable will give us the Summer Body we are looking for. A food diary or tracking app such as My Fitness Pal is one of the best ways to evaluate where you are and where you want to be. Find a nutritionist and/or trainer that will help keep you honest and guide you on your journey.
6. Protect Your Adrenals.
Cortisol is a hormone that gets released from the adrenal glands when we experience stress. When we release excess cortisol our blood sugar level becomes elevated, our immune systems are suppressed and our ability to make hormones such as testosterone and estrogen becomes compromised. Excess cortisol can also be responsible for abnormal hair loss, stubborn fat in the abdomen, and some skin rashes.
When we support our adrenals everything else will just start to just fall into place so make adrenal care a priority. Schedule time to take a warm bath, adopt a new breathing technique, and/or incorporate adaptogenic herbs such as reishi mushrooms into your diet.
7. Clear Your Skin.
Maskne was the #1 skin condition we treated in 2020. Wearing an occlusive fabric for 8-12 hours a day to slow down the spread of the virus presented us with a new problem, maskne. In our clinic, we treat maskne using ingredients such as mandelic acid, salicylic acid, sulfur, and blue light.
After the breakouts are under control, heal post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation with medical-grade vitamin c, medical peels, and red light therapy. A visit to your local medspa or dermatologist is a great way to get your skin glowing for summer and a great medical grade home skin care routine will maintain the results throughout the entire year.
8. Embrace the Magical Powers of Watermelon.
As the weather warms up so does our need for hydrating foods. Watermelon is a summer fruit that contains antioxidants such as vitamin C and lycopene to absorb UV radiation and protect our skin from the sun. Watermelon is extremely hydrating and hydrated cells are happier, creating a glow from the inside out.
9. Find the Perfect Sunscreen.
With so many choices on the market, it is hard to pick the perfect SPF. New studies are being released forcing companies and beaches to ban certain ingredients that have been associated with hormone disruption and reef destruction. Play it safe and find a physical sunscreen to protect your skin this summer by looking at the ingredient list on the back and choosing Zinc oxide and/or titanium dioxide for the active ingredient. Sun safety is the best way to prevent brown spots, reduce your incidence of skin cancer and prevent premature aging. In addition to always wearing sunscreen, wear a wide-brimmed hat, find some stylish SPF clothing and avoid direct sun exposure during the peak hours 10 AM-2 PM.
10. Ditch the Razor.
Laser hair removal is one of the best ways to have baby soft skin all summer long. Shaving is easy but it can leave you with skin irritation, bumps, ingrown hairs and razor burn. Laser hair removal permanently destroys the hair follicle in the skin so that the hair will never grow back. Some of the most common areas for laser hair removal include underarms, legs, bikini areas, and arms. Laser hair removal is done in a series of 6-8 treatments and shouldn’t be done on tan skin so please avoid self-tanners and the sun for at least 2 weeks before your appointment.
Summer 2021 is going to be a summer to remember. As travel starts to open up, it will finally be time to spread our wings and reconnect with nature, friends, and family. Looking and feeling good is a lifestyle, and small changes to our routine will make a big impact. Start preparing for summer now, I promise you won’t regret it!