Askanesthetician's Blog

An esthetician explores skincare issues and concerns

Follow Me! August 17, 2013

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I haven’t had any time lately to write new blog posts (since my son is on vacation in August I can’t seem to find more than 10 minutes by myself, and I need more time than that to write a blog post), but I am still updating the Ask an Esthetician’s Facebook page and pinning on Pinterest (my Skincare board should interest followers of this blog).  Find me on Pinterest under “Hanah Tetro”.

So please bear with me and follow me these other ways until I can be back to more regular blogging.

I hope everyone is having a great summer!  Don’t forget your sunscreen 🙂

Image from http://www.sweetiesal.com/2013/03/ways-to-follow-sweetiesal.html

 

Book Review: The Clear Skin Diet March 17, 2011

One of the earliest posts I wrote for this blog was called:  Is Your Diet Causing Your Acne?, and in that post I basically concluded that there is no connection between diet and breakouts.  Well I have to say that I have changed my mind in regards to the connection between diet and acne.  I now do believe that you can improve your skin, in this case acne, with the help of a healthy diet.

I started to change my mind about the diet-acne connection about six months or so ago when I noticed a change in my skin after I drastically cutback on the amount of dairy that I was eating.  Almost a year ago I started to see an acupuncturist about chronic pain I had in my right shoulder.  Since Traditional Chinese Medicine treats the body as a whole as opposed to just focusing on what is bothering you and looks to bring balance back to the body one of the things my acupuncturist and I discussed was my diet.  She suggested that I cut back on dairy, sugar, and fried foods.  Well this scared me.  I’ve been a vegetarian for 20 years, and I love dairy.  I pretty much ate dairy with every meal which isn’t surprising since if you look at vegetarian recipes they seem to inevitably have some sort of dairy in them.  I thought – how could I ever give up dairy?  But I wanted to feel better so I decided to try to cutback on the amount of dairy I was consuming.  I bought almond milk instead of cow’s milk (I absolutely hate soy milk so I wouldn’t even consider getting that) and started eating oatmeal each morning instead of my cup of greek yogurt.  And now the added bonus – anyone who has read the “about” section of my blog knows that I have suffered from acne for the last 20 years or so and this constant skin condition lead me to become an esthetician since I wanted to learn more about skin and skincare and help others as well – as I cutback on the amount of dairy I was consuming my skin started to look much better (and I lost a few stubborn pounds that I hadn’t been able to lose since I had my son three years ago).  No my breakouts have not stopped completely and yes I still follow a strict home care anti-acne regime, but I could definitely see a positive change in my skin.  I was very surprised to say the least.  I also really started to notice, more than ever before, a connection between how stressed out I was and the number of breakouts I had.  So now that I had seen a change in my skin I wanted to learn more.  I finally checked out The Clear Skin Diet from the library and started reading it.

So in many ways the authors of this book were preaching to the choir when it came to me reading this book since I have really started to believe in a connection between diet and health, including skin health.  At times I got very bogged down in the number of studies and scientific proof and explanations that the authors presented in the book, but truthfully I wouldn’t have wanted it any other way.  I was glad that the book didn’t just state a connection between certain foods and acne but actually proved that connection by quoting and explaining numerous scientific studies from all over the work (the scope of the research quoted was impressive).  Not only that but the authors of the book did the opposite as well; they thoroughly explained why so many doctors do not believe in a connection between food and diet.  Furthermore, the book goes out of its way to explain how past studies that claimed to prove that there were was no link between diet and acne were flawed and need to be reconsidered.  I really appreciated how much explanation the book contained.  Another thing I liked about the book were the summaries at the end of each chapter so if you didn’t want to read an entire chapter and just needed to be reminded of the key points in a chapter it was easy to do so.

The core point of the book is that the typical American diet which includes fast food, white bread and rice as opposed to whole grains, many foods filled with saturated fats, few vegetables and fruit, a lot of sugar, and many processed foods causes inflammation in the body which then triggers the production of hormones which lead to acne (this is an extremely brief summary of what the book aims to prove).  By changing the foods you eat you can stop this process from happening and thus help to clear up your skin.  The book doesn’t just promote changing one’s diet in order to improve their skin but also mentions leading a less stressed life in order to see an improvement in one’s skin.  The book goes beyond just explaining how diet and stress affect the skin, but also gives lots and lots of concrete tips on how to go about distressing and changing your diet.  It is great that the book doesn’t just say you need to change your lifestyle and/or diet but actually gives you the tools to do so.

I found two parts of the book intriguing.  The first thing I found interesting was the discussion of probiotics (chapter 5: Acne – A Gut Reaction) and acne and the other was the statistical information about the rise of acne in Japan as the traditional Japanese diet has given way to a more Western diet (chapter 7 – The Former Clear Skin Nation – Japan).  I had never given much thought to The trillions of microbes living in my intestines and how they affect my health but now I will.  I am on the lookout for topical skincare products that incorporate probiotics into them; I think we will be seeing more of those in the future.  So far I have found Bioelements Probiotic Anti-Aging Serum which, as the name suggests, isn’t marketed at acne sufferers but rather at people interested in an anti-aging product.  The chapter about Japan clearly presents a quite convincing report on how the traditional Japanese diet that includes lots of green tea, few processed foods, omega-3 rich foods, more fiber, little dairy, and a variety of foods rich in antioxidants protected the majority of the population against acne.  As Japanese food habits have changed and shifted more towards an American diet the rate of acne in Japan has risen tremendously.  As the charts, statistics, and research presented in the book explain this rise in acne with the change in the Japanese diet cannot be mere coincidence.  Lastly, I was also really fascinated by the studies that the authors quoted about the connection between diet and all sorts of other diseases like depression and anxiety.  For so long I have held on to the Western notion that diet, skin, beauty, and mood are not closely related so I was captivated (for lack of a better word) by the whole connection between food and health and not just for the sake of preventing acne.

Now if you are not one to want to read about scientific studies and such you can do two different things with this book:  read the summaries at the end of each chapter and read and follow the action plan for clear skin outlined in chapter 8 of the book.  There is a clear list of foods to include in your diet and which foods you should limit or avoid entirely.  I for one am making sure that I drink my green tea everyday without fail.

The one thing I didn’t really like about the book were the food suggestions and recipes.  I actually found all of the recipes completely unappealing, and I say this as someone who likes to cook and is always on the lookout  for new recipes to try.  Also in the food/snack suggestions dairy is mentioned again and again which is strange, in my opinion, since the book time and again talks about limiting the amount of dairy that one consumes.  Yes, I know the book explains that not everyone needs to completely cut dairy out of their diet and that different types of dairy affect one’s skin differently, but I just felt it strange that so many of the snack suggestions had dairy (or white potatoes) in them instead of someone coming up with a more creative, dairy-free suggestion.

Overall I really liked this book.  I would definitely suggest that if you are struggling with acne and have tried numerous topical solutions, oral antibiotics, etc. to no avail that you seriously consider changing your diet.  Yes, genetics plays a major role in acne (because we all know that person who eats fast food morning and night and never gets a pimple or gains weight, right?  I hate those people as much as you – believe me) as well as hormones, but perhaps the missing link to clear skin really is diet.  Eating healthy will only benefit you – there is no reason not to try the suggestions in this book.  You don’t need to try the actual recipes.  Take the list of good and bad foods and proceed from there.  And do a little meditation in the evenings as well.  Your body will thank you.

 

More reading, if you are inclined:

  • If you are less interested in effects of diet on acne but more interested in anti-aging be sure to read Dr. Amy Wechsler’s book The Mind-Beauty Connection.  I’ve recommended this book numerous times before in my blog, and I’ll continue to do so.  Her advice about living a healthy, happy life and how that will positively affect your skin, appearance, and psyche is wonderful.
  • Once I decided to give up eating a lot of dairy I went on the hunt for a good vegan cookbook.  I’ve been pleased with most of the recipes I tried in Appetite for Reduction.   The salad dressings in particular are great and so is the baked falafel.
  • Another great source for vegetarian and vegan recipes is Nava Atlas’ website Veg Kitchen.  Her cookbooks are great too.
  • For a concise article about the topic of this book read this article from WebMD Healthy Diet, Healthy Skin.
  • Can Eating Carbs Give You Pimples?Skin Inc.
 

Book Review: The Skin Type Solution by Leslie Baumann, MD July 23, 2010

I’ve already mentioned Dr. Leslie Baumann a few times in my blog mostly in connection to her blog on The Skin Guru on Yahoo! Health.  While for the most part I enjoy reading her blog I never liked the fact that Dr. Baumann continually disparages estheticians’ knowledge and expertise instead of realizing that doctors and estheticians can work well together and that their skills can complement one another.

If you read Allure magazine you are already familiar with Dr. Baumann’s name since she is quoted in that magazine almost monthly.  They even named her one of their top “influencers” in the field of fashion and beauty this past year.  Certainly when it comes to sharing her expert opinion on all matters connected to skincare Dr. Baumann is no stranger to fashion magazines.  Her enthusiasm for sharing her opinion about products has even gotten her in trouble with the FDA.

Besides for her constant media and print appearances Dr. Baumann is well-known for her book The Skin Type Solution which promises to save you both time and money in choosing your skincare products.  Since Dr. Baumann is both a practicing physician and a researcher (more on that later) she claims to have a unique perspective into knowing what products work well and which are a waste of money.  Furthermore, one Dr. Baumann’s contributions to the field of skincare is her expansion of the whole idea of skin types upping that number from five (dry, oily, combination, sensitive and normal) to sixteen. 

In order to figure out where you land on Dr. Baumann’s skin type assessment you need to fill out the questionnaire that is found at the beginning of her book.  The questionnaire measures four different factors in the skin: oiliness vs. dryness, resistance vs. sensitivity, pigmentation vs. non-pigmentation, and tightness vs. wrinkles.  For instance once I filled out the questionnaire and tallied my results I found that according to Dr. Baumann’s criteria my skin type was: OSPT or oily, sensitive, pigmented, and tight (though for the part when it came to tight vs. wrinkled I was really borderline).  I thought that was a good assessment about my skin.  Once you finish the questionnaire and determine your skin type you flip to the section of the book that corresponds to your skin type in order to learn more about your skin including numerous product recommendations.

Each different skin type has its own section that includes lots of information as it relates to that skin type exactly.  The information in each section is then subdivided into categories such as:  “about your skin”, “a close-up look at your skin”, “everyday care for your skin”, “daily skin care”, recommended products, “shopping for products”, “procedures for your skin”, and ongoing care for your skin”.  All good things especially the daily skin care regimes which really explain how and when to use your products; I think is always valuable.  You get a lot of information about your skin – a lot.  What can be confusing is all the asides or ifs and differences.  For example (page 69, paragraph two):

The OSPT Skin Type is quite common among people with medium and darker skin color, like Caribbean-Americans, Latin-Americans, Asians, and Mediterraneans.  Lighter-skinned people from other ethnic backgrounds, like the Irish or English, can be OSPTs, as can a redhead with freckles, which are a form of pigmentation. If the questionnaire revealed that you’re an OSPT, but you don’t experience all the symptoms I’ll cover, your rest result isn’t wrong.  OSPTs share many common problems, but there are some differences, so throughout this chapter, I’ll discuss the various symptoms, tendencies, and treatment options typical for dark, medium, and light-toned OSPTs.

Interspersed amongst the chapters are information about eczema, rosacea, acne, skin dehydration, sensitive skin, skin cancer, etc.  If your specific chapter doesn’t contain information about something you are interested in learning more about you can always use the index in the back of the book to locate the chapter that does.  Because of organization issues like that I found the book a bit choppy.  Of course I read the book straight through and didn’t just read the chapter for my skin type maybe if I had done that I wouldn’t have felt that the book was so choppy.

 

Things That Made Me Say “huh?”

 

There were a number of things that Dr. Baumann wrote in her book that made me raise my eyebrows.  For instance in the chapter for my skin type – oily, sensitive, pigmented, and tight – under the category “skin care ingredients to avoid if acne prone” jojoba oil is one of those ingredients.  I was very, very surprised to see that there since I feel (and I am not the only one) that jojoba oil is actually a great skincare ingredient for acne prone skin needing moisture.  [See my earlier post Ingredient Spotlight: Jojoba Oil for more information]  No explanation is given for including this ingredient in the list of ingredients to avoid.  In addition, Dr. Baumann continually recommends copper peptides as  great anti-aging ingredient.  I found that really interesting in light of the fact that few other experts agree with her.  Take for example what Dr. Ellen Marmur (also a dermatologist) writes about copper peptides in her excellent book Simple Skin Beauty:

Because copper is vital to enzyme function in the body, it follows that it’s also important to the synthesis of extracellular matrix in the skin.  I sound like a broken record, but although the notion of applying copper cutaneously to assist skin function is interesting in theory, it many be ineffectual in practice.  Is there enough concentrated copper peptide in an over-the-counter product, and is it stable?  Can it actually penetrate the skin to have an effect on the enzymatic workings of the body?  Personally, I would rather eat foods containing copper (such as sesame, sunflower sees, and cashews) to be sure the element is getting into my body to do its amazing job.  I’m doubtful [about copper peptides] until stronger scientific data proves the claims.

Lastly, Dr. Baumann recommends using eye creams with Vitamin K in them to help undereye circles.  Though many skincare companies have jumped on the Vitamin K bandwagon there is little proof that it actually does help undereye circles.

Issues like that made me wonder if I should believe everything written in this book.  It made me want to take Dr. Baumann’s advice with a grain of salt.

 

But My Real Issue?  The Product Recommendations

 

Dr. Baumann’s bio at the back of her book describes her thusly:

Leslie Baumann, M.D., is professor and director of Cosmetic Dermatology at the Miller School of Medicine at the University of Miami, and founder of the university’s internationally recognized Cosmetic Center.  She is on the advisory boards or does research for many companies, including Johnson and Johnson (Aveeno, Neutrogena), Avon, Allergan, and others.

 

So guess how often Johnson and Johnson products (Aveeno, Neutrogena, and Clean & Clear) are recommended in this book?  A lot.  So I found it hard to believe when I read the following (page 9):

Instead of letting you waste your valuable time and money tracking down products that wind up in the trash, I will direct you to ones that will really help.  I’ve reviewed the clinical trial date for the products, when available, to offer those proven effective.  Finally, since my patients have used my recommendations, I’ve listened to their feedback and tracked their treatment results to guarantee the efficacy of the treatment approach and product selection for each Skin Type.  All you have to do is take the test, determine your Skin Type, and choose from products in your chapter.  And at least when you splurge on products and procedures, you’ll know you are getting your money’s worth.

The recommendations are independent of any relationships that I have with the companies that manufacture them.  Of course, when I with a company, I know more about its products.  However, I work with over thirty-seven companies and have approached many others for information while writing this book. 

 

I don’t know – I guess I’m not buying her complete impartiality.

I was happy to see that Skinceuticals and Topix products were recommended since they are both great product lines.

 

Skin Type Solutions Website

 

Throughout the book Dr. Baumann continually reminds her reader that they can log on to her website Skin Type Solutions for more product recommendations, to share their thoughts about their skin type and skincare products, and to get more skincare information in general.  The site even has its own version of her skin type questionnaire.  So that made me wonder – why do I need the book at all if everything is online?  Of course, someone had thought of that as well.  While the online quiz will tell you what your skin type is according to Dr. Baumann’s criteria (it took me about 5 minutes to complete the online quiz) it will only give you the briefest of summarizes afterwards about your skin type – no recommended skincare regimes, no product information, and no in-depth information at all.  You’ll need the book for that.

 

Buy It?

 

I would actually recommend NOT buying this book simply because most of the information in the book isn’t going to be relevant for you.  That isn’t to say that I didn’t learn some new things from the book because I did.  There is valuable information in the book, and taking an in-depth questionnaire that forces you to think about your skin is actually great.  Having lots of detailed advice about your skin type is also extremely valuable in my opinion even if I don’t agree with lots of Dr. Baumann’s product recommendations.  So I would recommend that you check the book out of your local library or take an hour to sit in the library, take the skin type quiz, read the section of the book that is relevant to your skin type, and photocopy just that section.  I just don’t see a reason to keep a copy of this book at home.  If you want to have a skincare book at home I will once again recommend the following books (see my reviews):

 

How To Do A Skin Cancer Self Exam March 12, 2010

It is important for everyone to do regular self exams to look for skin cancer on their body.  If you see anything that arouses your suspicion you should have it checked immediately by a doctor.

According to the Skin Cancer Foundation you need to look for the following warning signs when doing a self-exam:

  • A skin growth that increases in size and appears pearly, translucent, tan, brown, black, or multicolored
  • A mole, birthmark, beauty mark, or any brown spot that:
    • changes color
    • increases in size or thickness
    • changes in texture
    • is irregular in outline
    • is bigger than 6mm or 1/4”, the size of a pencil eraser
    • appears after age 21
  • A spot or sore that continues to itch, hurt, crust, scab, erode, or bleed
  • An open sore that does not heal within three weeks
  • For detailed instructions about how to do a self-exam go this page on The Skin Cancer Foundation website.

    This slide show from WebMD has great photos of what skin cancer can look like.

     

    New Hope for Melanoma? March 8, 2010

    The New York Times just published a series of three articles about the trial of a new drug that researchers hoped would help cure melanoma.  Melanoma is the most serious form of skin cancer; if it is not recognized and treated in its earliest stages it is most likely fatal.  In a nutshell the drug  “PLX4032 held off the cancer by blocking a particular protein in its cells that was spurring them to multiply.” 

    The articles are fascinating, enlightening, and ultimately disheartening since the drug only worked briefly.  The drug trial process is explained in the articles, and it is quite clear that the corporate and financial considerations of the pharmaceutical companies take precedence over human lives for the companies.  The main doctor featured in the articles is portrayed much like a clichéd Hollywood hero – he neglects his family life for the sake of his research and patients.  The idea behind the drug itself is fascinating – block the mutation and stop the cancer.  But in the end, the drug was only effective for a short time.  The doctors are continuing with their research and hope to find an effective combination of drugs in the future that will stop and cure melanoma.  The articles are definitely worth reading.

     

    Link to the articles:

     

     

    The Natural, Green, Organic Skincare Fallacy March 3, 2010

    Nowadays a lot of people think that “natural” or “green” or “organic” skincare products are better for them than “regular” skincare products.  But these terms are pretty meaningless.  “Natural” and “green” are label terms that are not regulated by any government or non-government body.  The only label term that has any real meaning is “organic”. In an earlier post I already addressed the issue of parabens in skincare and cosmetic products, but I’ve also been thinking for quite some time about how I wanted to address the issue of organic, natural, and green skincare products in my blog since it is very common to see the issue brought up in all sorts of media (magazines, TV, etc.) and you hear people discussing the terms as well. 

    Lucky for me Skin Inc. published a two-part article series about just these issues.  The first article in the series addresses many important issues when it comes to “natural”, “organic”, and “green” products.  For example the article points out that there is no global definition for the term “green” in skincare and cosmetic products.  In addition, the article points out that marketing professionals are savvy enough to know how to play on people’s fears of parabens even if there is little real evidence to suggest that parabens cause cancer.  Another important point the article makes is to explain the idea of “greenwashing”.  This is when words such as “organic”, “natural”, or “botanical” are used in an effort to make the product you are buying seem better for you and the enviroment.  In reality you are probably buying a product that as a very low concentration, too low of a concentration to do anything, of these “green” ingredients.  Furthermore, while a product may have some organic ingredients it also has chemical ingredients in its composition, but this information is purposely left off the advertising and label claims.

    The second article in the series goes into greater detail about just what “organic” means on a skincare or cosmetic product label.  Things are not as straight forward as you would imagine.  Companies still have a lot of room to legally play around with the term “organic” so while a consumer may think they are buying a product that is both better for them and the environment that is not really the case.

    The bottom line is you can’t believe the hype and you need to educate yourself about ingredients before buying products.

    Click on the links below to read the articles mentioned in this post:

    Even more reading:  Are Organic Products Better for Your Skin?  – blog post by Dr. Leslie Baumann

     

    Book Review: Free Gift with Purchase by Jean Godfrey-June February 9, 2010

    I love, love glossy magazines.  I particularly love glossy fashion magazines.  If I am reading a magazine I tune the rest of the world out; so please do not disturb me while I am holding a glossy fashion magazine.  I began reading Teen and Seventeen in junior high and by high school I was happily reading Vogue and Harper’s Bazaar. These days my two favorite glossy magazines are Allure and Lucky.  I like Allure because of the make-up tips and amke-up looks, the skincare articles, and the other articles they have about beauty (or really our perceptions about beauty).  I like Lucky for the clothes that are featured,  the way the clothes are styled, the fashion tips, the fashion website recommendations, and the fashion trends that are predicted.  The one thing I don’t care for in Lucky is the make-up and skincare advice.  I consider it uninteresting and pedestrian at its worst.  So it is interesting that I would chose to read and review the book featured here since it is by the Lucky beauty editor, the person who is responsible for those features that so annoy me in what is otherwise, in my opinion, a wonderful magazine.  But I have always been very curious about a few things – just how to magazine beauty editors choose the products that are featured in their magazines?  Do these women really know anything at all about skincare?  Why should I listen to their advice?  Once I became an esthetician I was pretty much no longer interested in skincare product advice from magazines.  Of course, I am still interested in articles about new ingredients, formulations, and skincare discoveries, but choosing products?  Thank you very much but I’ll do that on my own.  (I do have to admit that I am still a complete sucker when it comes to hair care products.  My shower currently has a product that Allure raved about a few issues ago.  I believed everything I read and went and bought the product.  Alas it does absolutely nothing for my hair.)  Yet I know many women who take the skincare advice of fashion magazines very, very seriously.  As such I actually see fashion magazines, at times, to be “working against” me.  Not so much that they give people advice that I would wish they would only hear from me but that they give out wrong advise on so many occasions.  For example, last year Jean Godfrey-June, the author of the book being reviewed here, wrote in her monthly Lucky column that she felt that too many women were doing too many unnecessary and harsh treatments to their skin (like chemical peels) and thus thinning their skin.  She then recommended a cream that would be a cure-all for those woes.  I disliked the tone of the piece and the message.  Yet now I have just read an entire book by the same author.

    I wanted to read Free Gift with Purchase: My Improbably Career in Magazines and Makeup in order to both confirm my suspicions that beauty editors – a. really know nothing about skincare and b. to find what working at a magazine is really like (and yes, of course I have read The Devil Wears Prada).  I did get lots of inside information about magazines and plenty of gossip as well (if you are a fan of Bravo’s “The Real Housewives of New York City” you will want to read the parts about Kelly Bensimon).  Of course, I wish that all the people mentioned in the book were named instead of just hinted at.  I want to know which famous actress lives with Godfrey-June in the suburbs of Manhattan.  I want to know which famous European fashion designer has a strange and disgusting obsession.  But nevertheless the book did satisfy on that end.  I do wonder why Godfrey-June felt the need to devote an entire chapter to describing the suburb she lives in and how she is different, yet the same, as everyone there.  And if I hear one more time that nursing makes you super skinny after pregnancy I will scream (page 196). 

    This book to me was a quick and easy and enjoyable read, but it was also chockfull of what I consider inane and unhelpful “advice”.  For example please turn to page 53 to learn that you need to take all formal wedding photos the day BEFORE your actual wedding.  Pray tell – how are you logistically supposed to pull that tip off?  And what kind of tip is that anyway?  Or see page 163 in the book to learn that you should only use Creme de la Mar (an extraordinarily expensive face cream) on your radiation burns while undergoing cancer treatments.  Or to buy nail polishes, lipsticks, lotions, and perfumes to hand out to hospital and nursing home staff in order to bribe them into giving you (or your loved one) better care – see page 35 for that tip.  But for all of those ridiculous tips Godfrey-June does make a number of important points in the book:  nothing gets rid of cellulite (page 86), her list of skincare ingredients that actually work is very up to date (pages 228-229), and finally her advice that the best present you could ever give a new mother would be to hold her baby so she can sleep is very, very true (page 196). 

    I appreciated Godfrey-June’s honesty in describing her awkward physical stages, her failed beauty experiments, and embarrassing moments while doing her job, but really I read this book to have my curiosity satisfied about how exactly beauty editors go about their jobs.  And indeed my curiosity was satisfied.  According to the book beauty editors receive an enormous amount of free make-up and skincare products (Godfrey-June estimates that she receives between 50 to 200 free products a day), are wined and dined all the time by make-up and skincare companies, and receive on top of all the free products numerous free gifts from these companies.  Doesn’t sound like a bad job, right?   At least Godfrey-June recognizes that she has a job many, many people see as either  frivolous and silly or enviable (it all depends on how you feel about beauty products).  So does Godfrey-June really know all that much about skincare?  Not really – she is a journalist who has always written about the beauty industry so yes, she definitely knows more than your average joe about make-up and face creams but her advice, or that of any other beauty editor, should not be substituted for the knowledge of a trained individual (such as an esthetician or a doctor).  Godfrey-June says that the products that make it into fashion magazines are the best products, as decided by the beauty editor, and no amount of free gifts or meals will bribe them into endorsing something they do not love.  She does point out though that instead of sending beauty editors lots of free gifts if you will really want to get their attention buy lots of ad space in their magazines. 

    On a personal note I had to cringe when I read three times in this book variations on the theme that facials are unnecessary, estheticians only try to sell you products, and facials just stress Godfrey-June out (pages 227, 203, and 202 respectively).  Though Godfrey-June does point out that a good esthetician can make a world of difference for a person’s skin (pages 226-227) I was upset, once again, to see my profession derided in print.  I am not the type of person to tell you that every esthetician is a miracle worker, but I can tell you that the vast majority of us take our profession very seriously and are knowledgable and capable people who can greatly help our clients improve the look and health of their skin.  And we certainly don’t receive the freebies that Godfrey-June does in order to recommend products.

    Bottom Line: If you are a glossy fashion magazine devotee or simply love creams and make-up you’ll enjoy this book.  If you watch any sort of reality show on Bravo you’ll definitely enjoy this inside look into the world of celebrity make-up artists and hair stylists.

    Further Reading:

     

     
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