• Lip and Hand Treatments for Winter!

    Bettina ZammertIt could be so nice: relaxing walks through romantic snow-covered landscapes, and cozy evenings at home in front of a crackling fire. If only it weren’t for your tight, itchy skin – you’ve even had to stop wearing your favorite winter sweater with the lovely big roll neck because all of a sudden it has started to scratch!
    Constantly changing between the freezing cold and dry heating air is a real trial for the skin. As the thermometer drops, the skin slows down its oil production – and sadly this also applies to skin that was not producing enough lipids before. Often, extremely dry skin also has a restricted skin barrier, which in turn increases the skin’s sensitivity.

    In this case your customer will need your help – and you might have to change his recommended products to ones with higher lipid content. And during the professional treatment, don’t forget the areas of the body that are particularly sensitive and permanently exposed to the weather. A helpful hint: offer a special lip and/or hand treatment in winter. Start by exfoliating (use a very gentle product on the lips), then apply a moisturizing serum and a mask on top. If you like, you can perform a few massage or lymphatic drainage movements while the mask is working. At the end of the treatment, be sure to remember the finishing moisturizer, and recommend the appropriate special products for treating winter-dry skin to the customer.

    And then it won’t be long before your clients (and their skin) are enjoying the crisp, cold winter weather again!

  • Ingredient Focus: Cross-linked Hyaluronic Acid

    Dr Claudia AguirreSome ingredients pack a punch. And others are created to pack an even bigger punch. When science steps in to enhance a material, the results can be beautiful. This is the case with Hyaluronic Acid. Hyaluronic Acid, also known as Sodium Hyaluronate, is a sugar of the glycosaminoglycan family. Glycosaminoglycans, or GAGs, are substances that hold water in the skin and are our skin’s natural moisturizers. These work much better than some occlusive moisturizers like petrolatum, which artificially slow the loss of moisture from skin and give the skin a temporary appearance of plumpness and fullness. Hyaluronic Acid (HA) has been the standard for many years as the leading ingredient to hydrate thirsty skin.

    Now we have advanced technology to build upon the benefits of HA and produce an ingredient that has been shown to be far superior to HA in hydrating the skin. Enter cross-linked Hyaluronic Acid. Just as linking chains together makes a stronger structure, linking HA together forms a super hydrating net over the skin and delivers water to parched skin over time. Hyaluronic Acid is known to have an amazing water-binding capacity, making it ideal for skin hydration. Now cross-linked HA has fifty times the water-binding capacity of natural HA! And that means skin is continuously hydrated, plump and healthy. Even after 24hrs, this cross-linked HA holds five times as much moisture in the stratum corneum as standard HA. Studies have also shown that cross-linked HA is a superb free radical scavenger, so you can protect skin while keeping it hydrated. This is key for healthy, supple skin. Dehydration is perhaps the start of many skin conditions, including irritation and sensitivity. So be on the lookout for this enhanced version of Hyaluronic Acid for an ingredient that’s sure to keep the water running!

  • Hip, Hop to Health in 2012!

    Annet KingIf you are like the majority of the global population, one of your resolutions is to be healthier in 2012. You can’t escape the “get healthy” message with governments encouraging us to take more responsibility, and now with over 38 hospitals in the U.S offering complimentary alternative medicine programs like massage and acupuncture to patients, even the medical community has woken up to the notion that “wellbeing” can’t be found in a pill! So whether it’s rock climber strength, a hip hop dancer’s moves, or, like a third of resolvers, overall weight loss that you seek, now is the time to establish a new mindset and some healthful habits.

    Here are a few basic tips:

    • Drink: Water flushes toxins out of vital organs and carries nutrients to your cells. Even mild dehydration can drain your energy and make you tired. The Institute of Medicine determined that adequate intake for men is roughly 3 liters (about 13 cups) a day. For women it’s 2.2 liters (about 9 cups) a day. If you’re in humid environments, you exercise, breastfeed, or drink caffeinated beverages, your water intake needs be increased.

    • Keep it clean: The most successful diets are those that are not too restrictive and complicated. Maintain a balance between calorie intake and calorie expenditure. I’m a big fan of the “eat clean” rule of no pre-packaged, sodium or sugar packed, reconstituted food – if it doesn’t come from nature, don’t eat or drink it!

    • Eat: To optimize metabolism and energy do NOT skip meals, and your mom was right about breakfast being the most important! Fruit, vegetables, grains, and legumes (foods high in complex carbohydrates, fiber, vitamins and minerals, low in fat, and free of cholesterol) should make up the bulk of the calories you consume. The rest should come from low-fat dairy products, lean meat, poultry, and fish.

    • Unwind: The stress, sleep and weight relationship is strongly connected. Build in stress relieving treatments, exercise and stress reduction techniques into your daily routine. Taking even just five minutes a day to focus on your breathing and clear your mind really helps!

    • Move: Find what exercise discipline works for you, from hiking with Fido to joining a roller derby team to tap dancing your way to the top – you won’t do it unless you like it! Fun and enjoyment can be found together while breaking a sweat.

  • You’re the Master

    In the new year, people often make resolutions. “This is the year,” we often tell ourselves, “for a big change!”

    Perhaps the most common NYR: to find a new job. A better job. Or just a job. Of course, in our current economy, this resolution may be somewhat tempered by the cold reality of less hiring. Still, employees may aspire to something… better.

    It’s easy to conclude that the problem may be your employer. Just as there is no perfect mate or perfect marriage, there is no perfect workplace, and there is no perfect boss. If you can land another offer, it’s possible that a different job and a different company culture may suit you better—in which case, go for it, congratulations, and I wish you every success!

    But here’s my news flash for the New Year: creating your own greater job-satisfaction may be possible right where you are. It requires that you see yourself differently, and see your job differently. When you do this, it is possible that you will create different results in the corporate culture around you.

    A woman I know, a writer, spent many years working in ad agencies and PR agencies. She described feeling like a large, agile, trained, captive killer whale at a place like Sea World. “I live in a cement pond and perform tricks for food,” she told me one day over a martini or two.

    You may know how this story ends, as these stories always end: the trained killer whale bit her trainer in two. Bad whale.

    This is the problem with how most of us think of our jobs. We are conditioned to seek external rewards and incentives.

    But get this: Dan Pink, author of four best-selling books on motivation, says “Tangible rewards tend to have a substantially negative effect on intrinsic motivation.” Money, in particular, he says, tends to de-motivate. It’s never enough.

    In fact, Pink says “meaning is the new money.” What people really need in order to achieve and succeed is a sense of connection to something beyond self-interest. Something more meaningful.

    In 2012, try looking at your work with new eyes. The word that’s got my mind buzzing is “autotelic,” meaning that the activity is its own reward, and the goal is self-fulfilling.

    We’ve all had the experience of having our restaurant meal served by someone who genuinely seems to take joy in bringing us our food. Sure, this inspires us to tip well. But the truth is, people who love their work aren’t doing it for the tips.

    We’ve all felt the difference of being greeted and assisted by a customer service person who genuinely addresses our concerns, attentively and effectively. Their task may sound like a nightmare job: handling our luggage at the airport, or working at the DMV. Again, this is because whoever that person is finds some intrinsic pay-off in the job itself. These people work with pride, and a sense of joy.

    Do you?

    If you’re disconnected from your job, it’s human nature to say that this is because it’s not a good job. So, you play Farmville instead of working. You re-tweet and text and FB instead of working. Maybe you, oops, how did that get there?, may even find yourself slipping some office supplies into your gym bag. You paste magazine photos of beaches inside the drawer of your desk, thinking, Some day, some day.

    Some day is now. You may be experiencing disconnection, and dissatisfaction, because you’re waiting for rewards, like my friend Shamu, waiting for a fish to be tossed to her from the side of her sad cement pond.

    Find your meaning now. Where is it? The answer may surprise you.

  • Get Pushy

    It’s a brand-new year, and the best way to keep that feeling of urgent, alive freshness and newness is to push yourself. Start by setting some goals for your business, beginning with education.

    I always say that everything of any consequence happens outside our comfort-zone. The worst thing about being on auto-pilot is not that it’s boring; it’s actually dangerous to your business. By doing things the way we’ve always done them, we put ourselves at risk. This may surprise you, because “standard operating procedure,” and “business as usual” feel so safe.

    Why is the comfort-zone dangerous? Because it makes us lazy. We lose our speed and agility, which means we cannot respond to opportunities (or threats). It might be okay to become soft and slow if the world around us were not constantly changing. But it is.

    So as a professional, it’s essential to constantly question and challenge how you do things. It’s great if everything is working for you right now. The best way to continue your success, though, is not by standing still. Start by reading every word of the IDI newsletter, which will be coming your way every six weeks. It’s sizzling with ideas, breakthroughs and breaking news. To ensure you receive this newsletter, sign up for our email list here:

    Next, attend an IDI class. For more than 25 years, IDI has defined what it means to be a modern skin care professional. One area in particular where many skin therapists need development is the business of our business — in other words, how to position, organize and operate your business from a financial standpoint, and how to successfully market your business. Retailing in particular is an area where lots of therapists need help. Check out what IDI has to offer in these key areas, and be sure to take full advantage of our Twitter feed (, Facebook ( and other tools.

    And, the most important push to make in 2012 is the push outside the sphere of your own self-interest. This is true of all of us. We all create a nice, safe, warm little bubble for ourselves, and we tend to get stuck there.

    Push beyond the bubble to engage with others, meaning others in need. One year ago, I created joinFITE, a global initiative to empower 25,000 women entrepreneurs worldwide. The experience has been and continues to be astonishing, for everyone involved. I invite you to join us.

    Or, choose something else. There may be another local, national or international cause which feels urgent and vital to you and your customers. What’s most important is that the cause you select connects your business with your community. Whether this cause is offering shampoos and haircuts to homeless people, rescuing abandoned pit-bulls, or planting an organic vegetable garden in the heart of the inner city, do it because it makes your heart skip a beat, and it makes you want to do more.

    Then push it.