Updating your winter skin care

After a few weeks of 60-degree “winter” weather, I think we can’t complain about the cold and wind we’ve experienced the last few days. I personally can tell I’m due for a change in my skin routine. My hands are cracking and my lighter moisturizer just isn’t cutting it for my face.  Our Managing Esthetician, Camille Arbegast, shared some tips for changing up your skin and body care routine to account for colder, dryer temperatures and less time in the sun.

HYDRATE YOUR SKIN

Camille shows off her winter favorites from Rhonda Allison

Rhonda Allison Ultra Hydration Cream: This is by far our #1 best selling product when the weather gets cold and windy. This moisturizer uses the purest form of Hyaluronic Acid which can increase the skin’s moisture by 300%. The best thing about this moisturizer is that it doesn’t feel super heavy and leaves the skin feeling nice and smooth.

Rhonda Allison Cucumber Spritz: This product is great all year round, but in the winter when skin tends to feel “tight” from dryness, especially in stuffy offices, a mist of the cucumber spritz throughout the day will help you feel more hydrated. Plus, it is a good way to perk you up in the middle of a work day!

Rhonda Allison Drops of Essence: These hydrating drops are a healing, heavy serum that will help to soothe chapped winter skin with high concentrations of lavender and geranium essential oils. They can be effective for skin burns (including wind burn), cold sores, and even help with the appearance of scars.

REVERSE SUMMER DAMAGE

Two powerful serums, ChronoPeptide A and C-Stem Cell help to reverse summer damage.

Winter is the perfect time to brighten skin and reverse pigmentation that may be lingering from the summer’s sun exposure. We  have two concentrated corrective serums to power treat pesky dark spots:

Rhonda Allison ChronoPeptide A uses the purest form of Vitamin A to brighten, strengthen, and firm the skin without the irritation found in some commonly prescribed vitamin A products.

Rhonda Allison C Stem Cell is a 20% Vitamin C serum that not only helps lighten pigmentation, but increases hydration, reduces redness, and minimizes the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.

DON’T FORGET YOUR BODY!

Farmhouse Fresh Honey Heel Glaze: This mask is for more than just feet and is one of our best-selling spa products. Brush on this hydrating, soothing mask on dry hands, elbows, knees, heels, wrap with plastic wrap, socks, or gloves, and let let it gently exfoliate and hydrate dry skin. We incorporate this into our signature services and many of us personally use this product. You can wash it off or put it on before bed for an overnight miracle fix for dry skin!

Farmhouse Fresh Shea Butter Scrubs: These are the most hydrating body scrubs we carry. Unlike salt scrubs which can irritate dry, cracked skin, shea butter scrubs are gentle, not TOO abrasive, and will leave your body feeling hydrated like you’ve just applied lotion. We carry 3 delicious scents. Camille recommends a weekly full body exfoliation. These are also great to help prevent ingrown hairs after a wax.

CND Solar Oil: Cuticle oil is important year round, but in the winter, dry cuticles can become painful and picking at your cuticles and nails can lead to infection. Apply a few drops of CND Solar Oil after your shower or before bed to keep cuticles soft and help you resist the temptation to pick!

Stop into the spa anytime to ask our front desk for advice on the best hydration products for your needs or click here to book yourself a hydrating body scrub or facial at the spa!

 

 

Breaking Out: Before and After

I’ve been lucky to have decent-enough skin for the moderate effort I put into it. I had some pimples as a teen, but definitely not acne. I have the rare hormonal breakout and my skin definitely shows signs of sun damage and aging, but I think I’ve been fortunate. Recently, a ton of changes at once caused my skin to freak out in a painful way.

Yikes! I have never had breakouts this bad, this was actually a bit painful.

I recently cut heavier bangs and switched shampoos. I’ve increased the amount of  sweat, gross lake water, heavy duty sport sun screen, and dog-slobber my skin sees. In hindsight, skin-rebellion was a sure thing.

To be fair, I should have gotten bad breakouts long before now considering the gross things I do to my skin!

My breaking point came the day laying down for a massage became too uncomfortable with the breakout on my forehead. I asked our esthetician Cassandra to overhaul my Rhonda Allison home care routine. She’s struggled with breakouts off and on and has lots of empathy and experience in treating them. She looked at what I was doing, subtracted a few products, and added some more. Surprisingly, she INCREASED the moisturizing I was doing.

My recommendations from Cassandra, which I followed pretty well (though sometimes used my BB Creme as my SPF.) I kept the image of the instructions on my phone to have handy while I got ready am/pm. The only fairly pricey product was the Mandelic Arginine and I decided it was worth the cost for the results.

Instead of masking just once, I used the wasabi mask twice in the week per Cassandra’s suggestion. She was right…it does start off a bit hot and tingly but it cooled off quickly and I think it really kick-started the healing for me the first night.

My first time using the Wasabi Mask. It was a bit toasty for a few minutes!

Within a couple of days the pain was gone and the hardest thing was not picking! I admit that I picked one area, which you’ll notice in the “after” image, but overall, I was thrilled with my results in a week of being very diligent with the home care. Too often we hear people say they don’t see results, but then they confess that they only used half of the recommended routine, or only did the routine for a couple of days then gave up.

In typical business-owner fashion, I decided to look on the bright side and see my skin “freak out” as a test of our professional advice and products and be glad I could document my progress for others who might be struggling. I tried guessing at a routine on my own for a few weeks, but it wasn’t working even though I was using good products. That’s where a licensed, professional esthetician comes in. Obviously what worked for me won’t work for everyone and I’m honestly surprised things cleared up so quickly.

After photo, totally smooth skin (minus the spot I couldn’t resist picking) just over a week after I started my home care.

If you are struggling with a breakout, or you have a history inflamed and uncomfortable acne, we have a few facial services that can be helpful in kicking off the healing when partnered with a good routine at home. The key is to stick to the advice and keep in touch with your professional esthetician. Want more information or to schedule? Consider starting with the “Clear Results” facial for true acne or the Wellness Facial for occasional breakouts.

6 reasons our skin ages, and how we can help!

Guest Blogger, Licensed Esthetician, Nail Technician, Cassandra Lacina-Griffin

Aside from the passage of time, there are other key factors in how our skin ages. Our esthetician, Cassandra, shared some of the top reasons skin shows signs of aging and how the Rhonda Allison Minus 10 Facial helps to slow or reverse the aging process.

1. Reduction in collagen, antioxidants, and barrier function (skin’s ability to minimize moisture loss):

1% of collagen is lost naturally every year. The decreases in hormone levels impact cell renewal and elastin strength. The foaming peptide cleanser, Chronopeptide A, and peptide 38 used in the Minus 10 Facial provide firmness and minimizes wrinkles. The loss of the barrier function, or the skin’s natural ability to retain moisture, causes dry, dull skin. Omega 6 Essential Fatty Acids and Drops of Essence Hydration Drops used in the Minus 10 Facial support the barrier function by adding moisture and healing benefits to the skin.

2. DNA Breakdown:

Causes for DNA breakdown can be smoking, pollution, toxins, UV radiation. Our body is always repairing DNA damage; however sometimes it goes too far and as a result the cells kill themselves. The Rhonda Allison eye and lip renew serum and Peptide 38 serum assist in preventing DNA breakdown.

3. ATP Energy Deficiencies:

Adenosine triphosphate (ATP) is an energy source for cellular and muscular functions that is produced in the mitochondria. ATP is what makes out bodies run similar, to how a car uses a battery. Studies have shown that near the age of 60 our ATP ability is half. The Mandelic Arginine peel is used to increase cellular energy and stimulate collagen.

4. Glycation:

Glycation is a process by which sugar molecules attach to proteins and lipids, hardening them and causing them to lose their collagen and elastin strength and elasticity. The AGEless serum in the Minus 10 Facial is an anti-glycation product.

5. Inflammation:

Increase in inflammation is stimulated by UV radiation, stress, and pollution. The milk mask provides inflammation support in the Minus 10 Facial with cooling and calming effects. Sheer tint moisturizer or Daytime Defense SPF 30 help prevent future inflammation from UV radiation.

Cooling eye globes help to reduce inflammation and “cool” the feeling of the more active products.

6. Loss of volume and the extracellular matrix

When skin loses volume and when the extracellular matrix that provides structural support to skin start to decline, skin starts to appear loose or sallow in areas. Chronopeptide A and the Hibiscus Peel in the Minus 10 facial help to provide support and increase volume.

The Rhonda Allison Minus 10 facial addresses all of these causes of aging (except for reversing the passage of time, of course!) In addition, it is an incredibly nurturing service so you’ll appear instantly younger as your stress levels dissipate and your facial muscles relax! We recommend the Rhonda Allison Minus 10 facial in a series of 3 services a couple weeks apart for best results. Want to learn more or schedule your service online? Click here!

 

Top 3 reasons to wash your face twice a day

Cassandra Lacina-Griffin has been a licensed esthetician for over a decade and recently I asked her to share with me one piece of advice she wished our guests knew. Without missing a beat, she said “I wish people understood how important it is to wash their face twice a day.”

According to Cassandra, there are three main reasons you should wash your face both in the morning AND before you go to bed. If you exercise or sweat in the middle of the day, you might have to add another cleanse to remove sweat and bacteria.

1: Cleansing prevents excess oil. Sometimes people with dry skin hesitate to cleanse twice daily because they feel that it can be more drying. On the flip side, sometimes people who have oily skin use too harsh of a cleanser which can dry the skin out and cause it to produce MORE oil!  In those cases, Cassandra recommends that you check with a professional to make sure you are using the right cleanser for your skin type.

2: Cleansing removes dead skin cells that build up overnight. Even though YOU are sleeping, your skin is hard at work turning over skin cells.

3: Cleansing in the morning removes the night time serums and chemical exfoliators. Serums and exfoliators do their best work at night when you are resting and not sweating or wearing make-up, but they need to be removed before you start your day, especially before sun exposure or applying make-up.

If you have more questions or would like to get recommendations from a professional esthetician, schedule a facial with Cassandra or any of our great licensed skin care providers here.

Top dry skin solutions, all under $30

Every year we like to compile a list of our current favorites for dry, chapped skin.  This year we have some new additions to the mix!

farmhouse-fresh-hydrationFarmhouse Fresh Plum Chiffon Balm: Pure Shea, cocoa and mango butters have been combined into a rich, solid, scrumptious all-purpose balm that melts into skin on contact, nourishing dry, chapped hands, knees, knuckles – even lips! This blend of butters is a highly effective skin conditioning formula that helps fight wrinkles through deep penetration of vitamins A & E. The Farmhouse Fresh team even suggests dabbing a bit to the outer eye area before bedtime, for a deep moisturizing sleep shield. I personally used it with socks last night when I realized I could exfoliate one foot with my other foot!This balm really does it all.  $12.50

Farmhouse Fresh Shea Butter Hand Creams: Shea butter and Vitamin E-packed Jojoba and Soybean oils calm even the severest of dry skin. We recommend the shea butters over the body milks for this time of year for a longer lasting burst of hydration. The purse size tube is just $14.

Farmhouse Fresh Honey Heel Glaze: Great for hands, feet, any dry patches! Use as a mask and remove after 15-20 minutes or leave on. Great to leave on overnight with an old pair of socks or do a home spa treatment and put your hands in saran wrap or baggies to let the mask work! One client had us order 10 of these so she can gift one to all of her friends for a “My Favorite Things” party theme. $25

Farmhouse Fresh Clementine Oil: Antioxidant rich Olive Fruit and Grapeseed oils combine with Orange Peel, Jojoba, Sunflower Seed and Apricot Kernel oils to nourish and calm the most sensitive of skin types.  Great for after the shower while pores are open OR a few pumps in the bath (just be careful getting out) so you don’t have to sacrifice your skin to enjoy a hot soak in the tub.$18

hspureinvPure Inventions Drink Mixes: Hydrate from within!  Pure inventions mixes are a great alternative to caffeine or alcoholic beverages (or to stay hydrated between them). Because these drinks are caffeine free, sugar free, and free of other icky ingredients, they are hydrating and satisfying! (I won’t lie, I make a big mug of the Cranberry Elderberry blend with a cinnamon stick and orange wedge and add a splash of Jameson for the best hot toddy ever…yes, you lose some of the health  benefits this way!) $28.95 (60 servings in a bottle)

hssolaroilSolar Oil Cuticle Oil: Hand cream is a must have, but it won’t quite do the trick to hydrate cuticles. A cuticle oil that is designed to penetrate better into the nail are than thicker balms should be used morning and night to help prevent painful hangnails and dry cuticles and that can open the way for infections. The mini bottle is just $2.50 so you can keep one in your car, one on your night stand, and at your desk!

hsraultraRhonda Allison Ultra Hydration Cream: This is a rich moisture cream that delivers and binds humectants within the skin. It contains the purest and most potent form of hyaluronic acid – L-Sodium Hyaluronate and Cassia Betaglycan (plant hyaluronic) to increase moisture by 300%. Hyaluronic Acid is said to be the principal water-regulating molecule and can bind up to 6,000 times its weight in water.  Because of this, it will keep skin hydrated all day or night, without going on heavy or oily. $15 for the trial size bottle.

evspa-133Book a visit! Need more than home care to ease your dry skin? Our favorite skin hydrating services are the Gong Fu Chai Body Scrub, our EV Signature Facial Experience, and the EV Signature Manicures and Pedicures. Our Seasonal Hydrating Honey Plum features are also designed with winter skin in mind!  To learn more or book your services, visit our website!

 

Casey tries our Gong Fu Chai Body Scrub

Casey Melhus, our Front Desk Assistant!Casey, one of our amazing Guest Service Assistants, was fairly new to spa services when she started with us, but she’s been enjoying “sampling” all of our services and will be contributing to the Spa Newbie section of our blog.

From Casey:

Being a newer employee working the front desk at East Village Spa, I have the opportunity to be the practice “body” for our awesome service providers to try out services they haven’t performed at the spa.  My most recent endeavor was getting to be a practice body for three of our newer team members to learn about our Gong Fu Chai Body Scrub.

Before working at the spa, I had personally never heard of a body scrub, as I’m new to the spa scene.  After taking part in the training session, I know know that the service entails a stress-relieving and circulation massage, while incorporating the Gong Fu Scrub.  The therapists alternated between a body oil application and the scrub.  I absolutely loved the difference of feeling a smooth rub, followed by a coarse rub, and finished with a warm towel.  It as more relaxing than I ever anticipated.

After the service, my skin was noticeably softer.  Any anxiety I had felt when we started had completely faded away.  Although it is not a deep tissue massage, I still felt my body and muscles had relaxed as well.  I would recommend this service to anyone wanting to relax and have their skin exfoliated at the same time.  It is definitely something I will schedule for myself again!

To learn more about our Gong Fu Chai Scrub, check out our You Tube Video where Hannah demonstrates elements of the scrub on one of our employees.  The scrub treats skin on the back, arms, legs, and feet and can be upgraded to include a 30 minute facial or 30 minute focused back massage.

Book your Gong Fu Chai Scrub online here!

3 Spring Sunscreen Tips

CassandraClients are starting to abandon their heavy winter moisturizers for lighter skincare and spend more time outside so it is the perfect chance to learn what’s new for sun care!  I talked to Cassandra Lacina-Griffin, one of our licensed estheticians, for answers to common questions.

 

Question: If I have SPF in my make-up, is that enough coverage?

Answer: Probably not.  Most people aren’t wearing full make-up to take the dogs for a walk and by afternoon, the coverage won’t be effective if you put your make-up on in the morning.  For people who want light-feeling SPF coverage, a good choice is the Rhonda Allison Sheer Tint Finisher.  It provides SPF 18, is easy to apply, and as an added benefit, evens many skin tones so is perfect under make-up or powder.  No SPF product lasts all day, so you would need to reapply something if you put on your sheer tint finisher and SPF make-up in the morning before going out in the afternoon sun.

If you will be out for more than a few minutes, you could consider the Rhonda Allison SPF 30 sunscreen which is good for face and body (don’t forget your hands and decollete! They are some of the first body parts to show signs of sun damage!)  This still needs reapplied, but will last longer outside and provide more coverage than make-up. You can still wear make-up over it.

Question: Should I put on my sunscreen before or after my moisturizer?

Answer: Sunscreen goes on after your moisturizer.  Depending on your moisturizer (or serum) you’ll want those active ingredients closer to the skin so they can penetrate the skin easier.  You want your sunscreen closest to the sun exposure to provide a barrier.

Question: Do the products I use impact what kind of sunscreen I need?

Answer: When you are using professional grade correctives like many of the Rhonda Allison line, your skin is getting more exfoliation, which means new, fresh skin that is more susceptible to burns.  Just because you aren’t prone to burning, you still need sun protection. If you are investing in great skin care and corrective products, you need sunscreen more than ever so you don’t counteract all the good you are doing for your skin.

If you’d like more information, book a facial with Cassandra or any of our estheticians by clicking here.

 

 

3 counterintuitive skin care facts your esthetician wants you to know

Our estheticians want to shed light on a few common misconceptions about skincare.  It is easy to see why people get confused because these ideas are sometimes completely counterintuitive!

Myth: The best way to treat excessively oily skin is by drying it out.

Truth: While it seems like drying out oily skin is the best route, skipping moisturizer or using a harsh toner to try to dry skin can actually strip natural oils from the skin causing the skin to over-produce oil to protect itself.  The best option to hydrate oily skin is a serum or gel moisturizer.  These products will absorb quickly and skin won’t “panic” and produce even more oil.

Serums or gels, like the Rhonda Allison Blushed Wine Gel are great light moisturizers to hydrate oily skin.

Serums or gels, like the Rhonda Allison Blushed Wine Gel are great light moisturizers to hydrate oily skin.

Myth: Acids are harsh chemicals and aggressive on skin

Truth: The acids we use in skincare are naturally derived and vary in strength and benefit.  For example, Hyaluronic Acid, which may sound scary, is naturally occurring in the body in synovial (joint) fluid and in the eye.  This acid is used in products to plump and hydrate skin and some medical professionals recommend this for wound and burn healing.  Lactic acid is derived from milk and is beneficial for dry, mature skin and is often used to exfoliate without over-drying.  Some acids are more potent, but just because a product or ingredient is labeled an “acid” doesn’t mean it is scary.

Cassie getting a light facial peel using a variety of acids from our esthetician, Cammie.

Cassie getting a light facial peel using a variety of acids from our esthetician, Cammie.

 

Myth: If you have true acne, you need a good facial (or body) scrub to help unclog pores.

Truth: True acne occurs when excess skin cells, oil, and debris clog pores, potentially leading to infection.  Using a mechanical scrub over acneic skin may spread bacteria and increase inflammation, worsening the problem.  Depending on the severity of the acne, a chemical exfoliation (don’t let the word “chemical” scare you!) is best.  For example, glycolic or salicylic acids, applied topically as recommended by your esthetician or dermatologist, will help to break down skin cells and excess oil without spreading bacteria or increasing irritation.

Gritty scrubs like those pictured can spread bacteria and further inflame acneic skin.

Gritty scrubs like those pictured above can spread bacteria and further inflame acneic skin. It is best to stick with an acid based exfoliation instead of a manual exfoliation during a breakout.

If you have questions about your skin care or want to find out whether or not something you read online or heard from a friend is accurate, ask your esthetician!  To schedule a facial for an in-depth consultation and treatment, click here.

East Village Spa Proudly Using Rhonda Allison Skin Care!

We have slowly integrated Rhonda Allison skin care products into our facial services this summer, and we are ready to make a full switch in August.  The new clients and long-time facial clients who have tried these products with us love the line as much as we do, but we know many of our clients have questions, so we’d like to answer them here.

Q: Why switch now when you’ve used Derma E so long?

A:  Our clients and estheticians weren’t getting the desired results with Derma E and we wanted a line that offered faster, more dramatic improvements.  Derma E doesn’t offer professional strength products that we can use to add additional refining or potency our facials, but Rhonda Allison has a wide array of products our estheticians can use to customize and enhance their facials to strengthen and refine skin.

Q: How did you choose Rhonda Allison?

A: For months, Camille and Cassie have been consulting with other estheticians and spa owners, researching product lines and ingredients, and having discussions with skin care companies.  Rhonda Allison kept coming out on-top as far as reputation for results, ingredient integrity, and customer satisfaction.  Once we started trying their products and meeting with their educators, the choice was clear.  The clients (and spa employees) who have already made the change with us have affirmed this choice.

Q: Why is the change taking so long? 

A: The Rhonda Allison line is HUGE because it is very customizable.  Our estheticians have been doing training independently and with educators from Rhonda Allison.  The break-room looks like a college library!  Breaks have been spent reading ingredient books, studying products, and taking notes.  In August, Rhonda Allison educators are visiting the spa to provide hands on training in their more intensive products.  It has been really exciting, but time-consuming, to become experts.

Q: Will you continue to carry Derma E?  Will you be having a clearance sale?

A: No.  We will discontinue all of our Derma E products, but you can still purchase them online through the manufacturer and at health food stores.  We will be providing free facials and donating the rest of our Derma E inventory to the women residing at the Beacon of Life Shelter in Des Moines to help them with their unique skin care needs.

Q: What about your Farmhouse Fresh facial products?

A: We will continue to carry the Farmhouse Fresh line as an alternative line.  We love their products for the Farmhouse Fresh Hydrating Back Facial and for the 30 minute Express Facial.  We’re creating a fun and whimsical package that includes the Farmhouse Fresh Back Facial AND a 30 minute Farmhouse Fresh mini facial with our new skincare menu.  These products are also ideal for people who are just looking for a fun facial without making a big change in their routine or skin (i.e. our out-of-town guests).

Q: When can I get a facial with Rhonda Allison Products?

A: Now!  Camille and Cassandra are fully trained, Hannah will be offering Rhonda Allison Facials starting later in July, and Cammie will be offering them in August.  Lydia will no longer be offering facial services as she prepares for her move to California this fall. She hasn’t trained on Rhonda Allison due to her moving plans, but she recommends any of our other excellent and experienced estheticians.

Q: I liked Derma E because it was natural.  Is Rhonda Allison Natural?

A: Yes.  Rhonda Allison is known as a leader in natural, scientific-based skincare.  Read more here.  The website is a wealth of info about ingredients.

Q: Will your facials change much other than the products?

A: You can still expect a super-relaxing experience.  You’ll notice more active ingredients (meaning you might feel them working…this is GOOD!)  Our facials are also getting longer due to the nature of the professional-use-only products used to refine and improve skin.  We’ll be incorporating more relaxation techniques into the treatments due to the longer time the products require to work.  Yay!  We will adjust prices September 1 as needed for the longer services and better quality ingredients, but we will honor all gift cards purchased prior to September 1 for the old price (so stock up on gift cards now!)

Q: What about peels?

A: We typically don’t suggest peels in the summer due to sun exposure post-peel.  We are taking a temporary hiatus from peels until our estheticians are trained in the more effective skin refining procedures from Rhonda Allison in August.  We’ll be ready to help transform your skin this fall!  Click here for the Rhonda Allison before and after photo gallery!  We won’t be offering all of the services in the photo gallery (due to licensing and regulation) but you can expect amazing results.

Book your facial now and request the Rhonda Allison line!

Are your products doing what you THINK they are?

We all want to get a great value, but I’m amazed by how many friends, family members, and clients are not getting the results they should from certain products or treatments, but are reluctant to change.  Here are a few I’ve caught recently.   I’ve really been re-thinking a few of my own product choices lately too.  I’d love to hear your thoughts!

Moisturizers with SPF

I read an article online recently quoting a dermatologist who recommends sunscreen only as opposed to facial moisturizers that include sunscreens.  It made really good sense, actually. I had always felt fine knowing that my beloved Derma E BB Creme has SPF 25.  BUT…the dermatologist argued that for sunscreens to work, they have to be applied liberally to the skin. I only dot the BB Creme where I need help evening my skin tone.   Many people who use moisturizers with SPF only dot them where needed and certainly don’t apply heavily under make-up.  This is fine for walking from Gong Fu to the spa, but not for prolonged sun exposure.  I need to invest in Derma E’s facial sun screen in addition!

Hand Cream for Nails and Cuticle Care

For dry skin on the hands, hand cream is a must, but most lotions are too heavy to do much to help dry cuticles and peeling nails because the molecules are too big to be effective.  A cuticle oil with smaller molecules is more appropriate as it will absorb quicker to moisturize dry cuticles can even penetrate through nail polish to hydrate nails underneath.  Clients who complain that their Shellac chips after a few days of wear but refuse to use an oil designed for cuticles that can penetrate through gel polishes because they believe their thick hand cream can do it all won’t get the results they want.  Fortunately, a mini bottle of Solar Oil is less than $3 and will help keep nails from peeling underneath Shellac and will work wonders on dry cuticles and overall nail appearance.  Partner the cuticle oil WITH your favorite hand cream for the rest of your skin, you’ll be looking like a hand model in no time.

Daily Exfoliation Cleansers:

You only need to exfoliate 1-2x/week with a good exfoliation product like Derma E’s Microdermabrasion Scrub.  Daily cleansers with plastic beads are not doing enough to exfoliate, some drug store scrubs that are promoted for daily use are far too harsh due to the jagged edges of the abrasive ingredient.  Even a good quality exfoliation product should not be used more than twice weekly.

Callus removing tools

Many people mistakenly believe that metal blades to shave or scrape calluses are the most effective way to remove them, but in reality, these harsh tools actually can damage skin leading to scarring and harder calluses as the skin works to repair itself.  In many states, including Iowa, Credo Blades (metal callus razors) are  illegal in nail salons so if you see one, RUN!

If you have hard calluses that are bothering you, the safest way to soften them is to use a gentle foot file like the ones we give you during your pedicures at the spa regularly in the shower, but not TOO aggressively.  Products like Farmhouse Fresh Honey Heel Glaze can also gently soften calluses.  Our calluses do serve a purpose in protecting our feet, especially for runners, walkers, and people who like to wear sandals or walk barefoot, so it is important to leave some callus!

Epsom Salt Baths:

We are total advocates for baths with Kneipp aromatherapy salts or Epsom Salts (even the drugstore epsom salts!) but you can get too much of a good thing.  Some people mistakenly believe that salt baths soften the skin, but in truth, they can be quite drying, especially when combined with the hot water.  If you take baths regularly, either add a softening agent to the bath in addition to your salt like a light bath oil (almond or jojoba) or the Kneipp Skin Soft Almond Bath, or be sure to rinse the salts off briefly after a soak and apply a good moisturizer.