I don’t know whether to attribute my latest obsession with skin and hair to my advancing years, but I’m definitely obsessed.
I’ve been noticing everyone else’s skin and hair, and thinking a lot about what skin and hair properties age us most. Is it wrinkles? Sun/age spots? Overall even appearance in tone? The presence or absence of glow? I suppose it varies by observer, but there are plenty of medical professionals out there that claim the number one “ager” is spots (otherwise known as sun spots, age spots, liver spots, melasma and hyperpigmentation). While genetics, oral contraceptives and pregnancy can influence our spotting–how much we have and what type(s), the largest contributor is UV sun exposure. And it’s the UV rays that break down the collagen in our skin, speeding the onset of wrinkles. (We naturally lose collagen as we get older.)
Spots have inhabitated my face since I was a child. Some of them existed early on, so they might actually be freckles, but the vast majority laid claim to my visage during the past 20 years. I know now that they came at the bidding of the sun. That’s why I’m always touting the need to use sunscreen, with an SPF of 30 or greater, daily. It’s also why I am determined to find a natural product that helps lighten and brighten my complexion.
There are numerous products available today that use hydroquinone to lighten areas of hyperpigmentation, but hydroquinone is a known toxin that has been shown in laboratory studies to cause cancer in rats. It can also cause swelling and irritation and can lighten areas surrounding hyperpigmentation, resulting in a bulls-eye appearance. And wouldn’t you know…it’s been banned in Europe; there’s our (not) highly-effective FDA at work again. I have friends who have used products containing hydroquinone with positive results, but the benefits simply don’t outweigh the risks.
I’ve only been using Jurlique’s Purely Bright Treatment Serum for a few weeks, so I haven’t noticed any of my spots diminishing in size. However, my skin definitely seems brighter, “glowier,” and more even-toned! I love how this product feels on my skin even after it gets absorbed. The serum uses Jurlique’s proprietary VitaBrightKX+ along with Kakadu Plum, which is the world’s richest natural source of Vitamin C. I’ll report how the product continues to work, but it’s my current skin defense and skin repair weapon of choice. Jurlique is also one of the purest skincare lines available.
And to ensure my serum is really penetrating the skin to do it’s work, I cleanse with Juice Beauty’s Green Apple Cleansing Gel. Like Jurlique, the entire Juice Beauty line is completely natural (e.g., free of parabens, sulfates/ites, glycols, disodium ETDA, fragrance, etc.). The gel cleanser claims to “refine and brighten,” (using the natural exfoliant: glycolic acid), but all I know is it removes my eye make-up easily and leaves my skin feeling incredibly smooth and supple.
Of course, as I’ve gotten older, my hair has decided to reinvent itself several times over. I’ve battled gray hair for the past two decades (a trait inherited from my father who turned gray in his 20s). Then after having my children, my hair decided to turn from nearly stick-straight to wavy. Then as the years came on, my hair decided to get coarser and drier. I’m using two products that do a great job of combating coarseness and dryness naturally. Both are made by ACURE. The spray-on Leave-In Conditioner makes my hair instantly soft and supple, and the pure Argan Oil (use sparingly!) does a great job eliminating coarseness and controlling frizz. Both also help protect your hair from styling tools and UV rays. I’m in love with both products, and find they work magic on my hair regardless of which shampoo and conditioner I use in the shower.
So here’s to “glowier” skin and glossier hair!