....of skincare products that she has no clue what to do with. I used to be one of those people. I walked into Bloomingdales and was overcome with retail endorphines as soon as I hit the cosmetics counters. Beautiful bottles with French names promising to make me look young and beautiful. I had creamy cleanser by Dior (I had no idea it wasn't right for my skin but I loved the smell and the pretty box) and pink toner by Lancome (I still have no clue what made it pink) and some kind of moisturizer that claimed to make my skin dramatically different.
And then I became an esthetician at 31 and it all changed. Suddenly I wanted to know what I was putting on my skin and why. I became an ingredient junkie. I learned about alpha hydroxy acids and anti-oxidants and how they work in the skin. I became fascinated with how our skin cells work and the causes of acne and premature aging. Seventeen years later, I'm blown away by how far science and technology have come in the world of cosmetic skin care. No more Noxema for me although the smell still takes me back to those hot summer Valley days when I'd slather it all over my body after getting a sunburn. Now I use a resurfacing cleanser in the morning with a combo of salicylic, lactic and glycolic acids, and a creamy cleanser to remove my makeup at night. And I have a row of serums in my bathroom cabinet that I layer on morning and night. And they work! And the best part...the empowering part of this is that I know what's in those bottles and how they work to help me not look my age. I know that the peptides in my serum tell my cells what to do...they stimulate my own collagen and elastin production and they help me to frown just a little less because my muscles are more relaxed. And I know which ingredients in my lightener work to keep my years of sunbathing as a kid and a teenager a secret that my skin doesn't reveal. Even cooler? I know how those ingredients work!
I believe that everyone has the right to know what they're putting on their face before spending even more money and adding to that drawer. My goal here is to teach you how to choose wisely. Figure out what your skin care goals are and learn how to achieve them. Know what's on the back of those labels. And know what's in the drawer.
Wendei Spale has been a licensed esthetician for more than 17 years and is one of the owners of Peace of Mind Skin & Body Care in Studio City. Her clients regard her as an educator and they rely on her to help them decipher the many skin care products that are on the market. Peace of Mind is located at 12215 Ventura Blvd. #110 in the Times Square Center in Studio City. Visit them at www.peaceofmindskincare.com for more information.