I had the privilege of interviewing a fellow health coach who specializes in holistic skin care. Lizzie is an ACE certified trainer and coaches women to eat for boundless energy and glowing skin in her practice Lizzie May Wellness…check her out here!
What is the number one mistake women make with their skin?
In my opinion, the number one mistake women make with their skin is focusing on topical solutions rather than addressing the internal causes of skin conditions. I meet so many women who spend a fortune on products to fix persistent acne, yet they eat junk food, live on diet soda, are stressed beyond belief, and their hormones are completely out of whack. You can’t fix your outward appearance without fixing your health. I truly believe that radiant, blemish free skin is best achieved by internal means. Topical treatments can definitely enhance the skin’s appearance but they’re not nearly as important or sustainable as clean eating, stress reduction, hormonal balance, and proper sleep.
Will regular facials really make that much of a difference for my skin?
I do find value in facials and I think they are especially beneficial because you are taking time out for yourself to relax and be pampered. Stress wreaks havoc on the skin, so anything that you can do in the area of self-care is a positive in my book. One of my favorite elements of facials is facial massage. Facial massage improves the health of the skin, increases lymph and blood flow, removes toxins, softens wrinkles, and results in glowing skin. If you are going to get a facial, make sure to find an aesthetician who gives facial massage as part of the treatment. I also am a huge fan of at-home facials and DIY facial massage, which is an easy, more affordable option than weekly facials. I personally do the Tanaka facial massage on myself and I simply follow along with this youtube video. As for at home facials, I like this how-to guide.
What’s your favorite moisturizer for dry skin?
Weleda Skinfood, hands down. It’s super thick but my skin has been clearer than ever since I started using it and it hydrates better than any moisturizer I have found. It’s especially great for long flights! Due to the thick texture, it takes a little bit of time to sink into the skin, but it leaves you with the softest skin of your life. Refinery29 just wrote an article about it if you want to learn more.
What’s your favorite cleanser for dry skin? Combo skin? Oily Skin?
I’m a huge fan of the oil cleansing method for all skin types. When following the oil cleansing method, I recommend that you use less castor oil if you have dry skin and follow the recommended ratios (on the linked guide) for your respective skin type. Out of everyone I have recommended this method to, only one woman experienced a week-long “purging period,” and then her skin cleared up without future problems. I like to add lavender and frankincense essential oils to my oil cleansing mixture for extra benefit as they are calming, anti-bacterial, and they have a very uplifting scent.
What are your make up suggestions for tinted moisturizers and/or cover ups?
I love Jane Iredale products: they’re cruelty free, non-comodegenic, and they always exclude parabens and phenoxyethanol.
Glow Time Full Coverage Mineral BB Cream is one of my favorites.
Another brand I really like is Vapour, especially their Atmosphere soft focus foundation.
W3LL People’s Narcissist foundation concealer stick is another favorite.
Mineral Fusion makes a great concealer. It covers dark circles, blemishes and discoloration as well as anything I’ve found at Sephora. It’s free of gluten, parabens, artificial colors, fragrances, and talc. It’s also hypo-allergenic and hasn’t caused breakouts on myself or anyone I have recommended it to.
As for primers, my favorite brand is 100% Pure.
I know I shouldn’t pop zits but its so hard not to! Any suggestions on how to minimize a breakout?
Yes, try as hard as you can not to pop pimples as doing so often leads to scarring and excessive hyperpigmentation, which can take longer to disappear than the actual pimple. If the zit has come to a head you can follow this protocol. As far as minimizing a breakout, ice is a very effective tool to reduce swelling and redness. If I get a rogue pimple, I simply wrap an ice cube in a clean cloth or tissue and apply to the bump for 30 second intervals (30 seconds on/30 seconds off) for 5 minutes. I find that many women treat pimples so aggressively with harsh, drying spot treatments that end up doing more harm than good. It’s very important not to over dry your skin: it will only make breakouts worse. Instead, prime your skin for optimal healing with hydrating, calming, anti-bacterial spot treatments. I love essential oils for speedy healing of pimples and minimizing hyperpigmentation in one fell swoop. One of my favorite zit zapping combinations is one drop of lavender oil, one drop of frankincense oil, and a dime sized amount of pure d-alpha tocopherol vitamin e oil, applied directly to the pimple and left on overnight. Acnevir is another good gentle, homeopathic topical treatment.
Is there a way to tell why I break out in certain areas on my face and not others ?
In my opinion, yes. While not all people agree with the concept of Chinese face mapping, I have found it to be very accurate in terms of troubleshooting skin problems and more importantly, identifying potential health problems that are causing those skin problems. I really like this guide for determining the cause of breakouts.
Does the food I eat really make a difference for my skin?
Yes! The old adage “you are what you eat” is true! We are what we eat-our cells and organs are literally made up of the foods we eat. What we eat affects our hormones, and our hormones affect our skin, so if we are eating junk, we will more than likely be setting ourselves up to have problematic skin. Many dermatologists are now realizing the important role of a clean diet in the health of the skin, and there have been a few good studies published in medical journals about diet and acne. I find these developments very promising! The tricky part of prescribing a diet to someone is that due to bio-individuality, no one diet works for everyone. That said, there are basic rules you can follow to ensure flawless, healthy skin. I recommend eating lots of nutrient-dense, whole, organic, unprocessed foods and drinking plenty of filtered water. I also recommend eating low-glycemic foods and avoiding cow’s milk if you are struggling with acne. Research has shown that dairy is inflammatory, and leads to redness, pus, and can worsen breakouts. Even if you choose organic milk, free of Bovine growth hormone, you must realize that all dairy products contain intrinsic cow proteins that can wreak havoc on your hormones and your skin, resulting in increased oil production and clogged pores. It is also important is to steer clear of commercial oils, which are high in Omega 6 fatty acids and can be very inflammatory. Examples of commercial oils include vegetable oil, canola oil, soybean oil, margarine, shortening, or other chemically altered fats. Instead, opt for fats like real, grassfed butter, olive oil (do not heat), and eat plenty of fatty fish (if you eat fish), which is high in anti-inflammatory Omega 3’s. I am currently writing an ebook that includes diet tips, recipes, and more in-depth food and supplement recommendations for clear, radiant, youthful skin. It will be sold on my website later this year.
Can fine lines and wrinkles be reversed?
Yes! I have personally witnessed many cases of fine lines and wrinkles disappearing, without the use of any topical products. In my opinion, the most effective and rewarding way to reverse fine lines and wrinkles is through diet and proper supplementation. When I say “supplementation” I’m not talking about synthetic vitamins, but rather highly bio-available, pure supplements and herbs that the body recognizes and assimilates instantly. As I’ve mentioned before, the health of our skin depicts our internal health so if we eat foods to optimize cellular health and glowing skin, we’ll feel more energetic, happier, and beautiful skin will be an added bonus! The benefit of addressing fine lines and wrinkles from the inside out is that you won’t only look your best, you’ll also feel your best and truly have an “inner glow.”
How can I fight wrinkles and saggy skin?
There are quite a few ways to do this, which is exciting! For some people, the range of anti-aging techniques out there can also be overwhelming, a sentiment I understand completely. Beyond the basics of avoiding too much sun exposure, staying away from cigarettes, and minimizing alcohol and caffeine consumption, here are a few of my favorite wrinkle-fighting tips: From a topical perspective, Retin-A can stimulate collagen production and can reverse fine lines and wrinkles. It is the only product approved by the FDA to do so. Retin-A, a vitamin A derivative, works by increasing cell turnover within the skin, stimulating collagen production and exfoliating the top layers of skin to reveal younger looking skin underneath. However, Retin A is not without side effects and if you are looking to take the topical approach, I think rosehip seed oil is a great, natural alternative. Rosehip seed oil has been extensively studied for many of the same functions attributed to Retin-A, and has been shown as effective as the chemically formed, Retin-A but without Retin-A’s harsh side effects, like redness and over-drying of the skin. First and foremost, silica, known as the “beauty mineral” is my secret weapon for wrinkle reversal and prevention. If I had to suggest one thing to prevent wrinkles and saggy skin, I would recommend taking Bamboo extract, which is the richest known source of silica. Bamboo extract contains over 70% organic silica and is 10 times more potent than horsetail silica. If our bodies are deficient in silica, our skin’s elasticity will become impaired, leaving us much more susceptible to wrinkles and sagging skin. Unfortunately, as we age, the body retains less and less silica, leaving us much more prone to wrinkling and sagging. Silica prevents and reverses wrinkling of the skin by supporting collagen production. Bamboo extract, due to its high silica content, is such an amazing skin rejuvenator and I have not seen anything work as fast or as effectively in naturally plumping and smoothing the skin. Finally, in order to fight wrinkles and prevent saggy skin, you want to have good circulation in your face at all times. One fun tool that I use to improve circulation in my face is inversion therapy. I use an inversion table and try to spend 10 minutes upside down every day. If I don’t have my inversion table, I do handstands or headstands against the wall. If I don’t feel like doing handstands, I hang off the side of my couch (be careful if you try this!) Inversion therapy reverses the effects of gravity and allows the skin to rest while being pulled in another direction, while also increasing blood flow to the face. It’s both relaxing and energizing! I find my face looks rejuvenated after a good inversion session. I may or may not have written my answers to this interview while hanging upside down:)