Eliminate Acne with Clay

If you’re like 80% of the people on this planet you’ve experienced acne at some point between the ages of 11 and 30[1],  and breakouts always seem to happen at the worst time.  While that’s probably due to the fact that stress increases your chances of having an acne breakout[2], there  is something you can do about it.  I’m sure that you’ve seen faces covered in clay in beauty spas across the world.  I myself have always looked at this practice with a raised eyebrow of cynical disbelief.  How can covering your face in mud make you more beautiful?  It turns out that there is some solid scientific evidence behind this.

The Beauty of Bentonite Clay

There are many types of clay.  Whether it is Kaolin clay, French Green clay, Bentonite clay, or any of the other clays out there, not all clay is created equal.  Today we are going to talk about Bentonite clay because it has two properties that make it perfect for eliminating acne.

Absorption

Bentonite is to clay as Bounty is to paper towels.  It is highly absorbent.  In fact, it is so reliably absorbent that it has been used in two scientific studies[3][4] to remove oil from the skin in order to study whether children with acne prone-skin actually produce more oil (sebum) than kids who are not acne-prone.  (Spoiler alert: acne-prone kids produce over 2x the amount of sebum as kids who are not acne-prone.)

Bentonite clay is so absorbent that not only can it suck the oil right off of your face, it can get down into your pores and suck the oil right out of them, too.  This is a good thing if you are teeming with oil.  However, it is a very bad thing if you are not.  Bentonite clay can severely dry out your skin causing severe skin irritation.  You shouldn’t use it if you have dry to normal skin.

Antibacterial

Bentonite clay is a broad-spectrum antibacterial when combined with water.[5][6]  A broad spectrum antibacterial is a substance that acts against a wide range of disease-causing bacteria.[7]  While its effect on P. acnes has not been formally studied, it is reasonable to expect that it is effective against it since its effect has been proven on a variety of bacteria including Staphylococcus aureus (S. aureus), penicillin-resistant S. aureus (PRSA), methicillin-resistant S. aureus (MRSA), Escherichia coli (E.coli), Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Mycobacterium marianum, and salmonella.

The Take-Away

Acne is caused by excessive oil (sebum) production that clogs pores which become infected with the bacteria P. acnes.  Bentonite clay is effective in removing oil both on the surface and deep inside the pores.  It is also likely effective against the bacteria P. acnes which causes redness and inflammation inside those clogged pores.  Using a mask of Bentonite clay can help eliminate acne.  However, it is not recommended for individuals with dry to normal skin as it can be too drying, resulting in severe skin irritation.

14212804_1825577091040489_292551474177293682_n-2Kaiya Naturals has a mask specifically designed with this purpose in mind.  It is our Seedalina Mud Mask.  It is specially formulated with Bentonite clay, along with other ingredients, like hemp seeds, which have been proven to be effective against acne.  Sold dry, it can be mixed with a number of liquids, including yogurt, honey, watermelon or cucumber juice – however, the antibacterial property of this mask is unleashed when it is combined with water.

How To Use The Seedalina Mud Mask

1) Only use the Seedalina Mud Mask once a week.

2) Clean your skin with a gentle cleanser like Kaiya Naturals Face & Body Wash (only available at a Kaiya Naturals Event).

3) Prepare the mask by mixing a teaspoon of the clay mixture with half a teaspoon of water in a separate bowl.  Mix together with your finger, or a wooden spoon.  (Make sure that the bowl is not made of metal and don’t use any metal utensils to mix the mask!  Another property of clay that we haven’t discussed here is that it absorbs heavy metals like mercury, cadmium, lead and benzene.  This is great if it is pulling those metals out of your face.  It’s not so great if it is pulling those metals out of your bowl, or spoon, and depositing them onto your face.)

4a) This is an optional step.  You can open your pores by putting your face over a bowl of steaming water for a few minutes.  However, if you do choose to take this step be careful not to burn yourself.

4b) Apply the mask to your face avoiding the area around your eyes.

5) Wait until the mask is dry.  This usually takes 15-20min.

6) Wipe off with warm water.

7a)  This is an optional step.  Apply a toner like Kaiya Naturals Seedalina Toner to close the pores.

7b)  This is an optional step.  Apply a moisturizer like Kaiya Naturals Seedalina Moisturizer to add moisture back into the skin.

If there is anything that you would like me to talk about feel free to reach out to me either here, via email: kedric@kaiya-naturals.com, on twitter @kaiyanaturals, or on Facebook @kaiyanaturals.  Also  please, please, please share or comment on this article.  Seriously, I’d love to hear your feedback in the comment section below.

Stay Natural,

Kedric

These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration.  This is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.  For educational purposes only.

 

 


References:

[1] http://www.niams.nih.gov/health_info/acne/acne_ff.asp#b

[2] http://www.calmclinic.com/anxiety/symptoms/acne

[3] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/7130739

[4] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/3965578

[5] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2413170/

[6] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2895274/

[7] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Broad-spectrum_antibiotic

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Alcohol Gives You Dry Skin

In the past we’ve talked a lot about the ill-effects of sugar. If you’ve been following our blog then you know that Sugar Gives Your Wrinkles, and Sugar Gives You Acne.  You should also know that you can have beautiful blemish-free skin by eating a low-glycemic-load diet.  Whether you want to be healthy, or just look healthy, you need to eat right.  But…sugar isn’t your only problem.  Alcohol isn’t the greatest thing for your complexion, either.

I don’t want to get all preachy on you.  We all saw how well prohibition worked out.  In fact, the benefits of some types of alcohol, consumed moderately, can outweigh the skin-damaging effects.  (Here’s to you, red wine. )  Unless you consume alcohol daily you don’t need to worry.  If you do drink daily you can either reduce the amount of alcohol you consume (yeah, right), or you can keep reading to find out how to lessen those effects.

The Damage

What are those skin-damaging effects?  There are a quite a few of them.[1]  Today, we’re going to talk about only one, dry skin.  With winter coming up your skin is going to dry out anyways.  (If you want to know more about why that happens be sure to check out the article: Winter Is Coming.)  Add a daily dose of alcohol to that and you’re in for some very dry skin.  So, how does alcohol dry out your skin?

Breaking the Seal

funny-unisex-bathroom-sign-se-2028Alcohol is a diuretic.[2]  A diuretic is any substance that promotes an increased production in urine.  Thanks to alcohol, your body can’t reabsorb water, you pee a lot, and your organs dry out.  Skin that is dry appears more wrinkled than skin that is nice and hydrated.  Your skin will rehydrate as alcohol is eliminated from your body.  However, if you drink every day and you’re over the age of 40, out of shape, eat poorly, or stressed out your body may not be able to eliminate it completely[3] – resulting in skin that may not be able to properly rehydrate.

Vitamin A

Alcohol can also dry out the skin through another method.  Excessive alcohol consumption can create a Vitamin A deficiency[4] which in turn can give you dry skin[5].  Vitamin A (aka Retinol) is also an important anti-oxidant that affects the turnover rate of skin cells and removes substances that damage collagen.[6] This means that not only can it give you dry skin which appears more wrinkled, it also also make your skin appear more aged.

How To Lessen Those Effects

OK, let’s be real.  You’re probably not going to suddenly quit drinking cold turkey no matter how good it is for your health, and your appearance.  There is still hope.

Drink More Water

While your body may be less able to absorb water directly after consuming alcohol, it can absorb water just fine several hours later.  Be sure to increase your consumption of water a few hours after drinking.  This does not mean that you should stop drinking water while you’re drinking alcohol.  Your body may not be as good at absorbing water, but alternating between an alcoholic drink and a glass of water helps you to consume less alcohol, and gives your body more time to metabolize what you did drink.

Eat Better Food

We need to talk about what you eat when you drink, as well as your overall diet.  Consuming alcohol on an empty stomach makes it more difficult for your body to eliminate alcohol.  To give your body a helping hand eat before your drink.  What’s the best thing to eat?  According to Nutritionist Katherine Brooking, healthy fats and lean proteins (like avocado, peanut butter, and salmon) will help slow the absorption of alcohol, while simple carbohydrates (like white rice, cookies, and potato chips) will not.[7]  For some great pre-drink meal ideas follow this link: http://elitedaily.com/life/eat-before-drinking-photos/1258285/

We also spoke about how excessive alcohol consumption can create a Vitamin A deficiency.  This means you should add foods that are high in Vitamin A to your overall diet.  This is things like sweet potatoes, beef liver, spinach, carrots, and pumpkin to name a few.[8]

Exercise

We need to talk about lifting things up and putting them down.  That’s right, strength training.  Those with more muscle-mass are better able to metabolize alcohol than those with less muscle-mass.[3]  This means that you have to lift heavy things – not those 2lb dumbbells signed by Jane Fonda that have been sitting in your closet since the 1980s.

Even though muscle is what helps your body eliminate alcohol more quickly, don’t forget the cardio.  While it may not have a direct effect on alcohol metabolism, it can help reduce chronic stress, which as you’ll read below also has an effect on how well you can metabolize alcohol.

Manage Your Stress

meditationStress can affect rate at which you absorb alcohol.  This is because your small intestine absorbs alcohol at a faster rate than your stomach.[9] Acute stress causes your stomach to empty into your intestines more slowly, which means that you’ll also absorb alcohol more slowly.  However, chronic stress causes this to accelerate.[10]  This means that if you are chronically stressed out your stomach is emptying faster and causing you to absorb alcohol more quickly.  Managing your stress through exercise, meditation, or therapy can help your body return to normal stress levels.[11]

Cover It Up

A good moisturizer, like Kaiya Naturals Chickie Gold Moisturizer, is a necessity if you drink daily.        While it won’t help you from losing water due to the diuretic effects of alcohol, it will help you hold on to what you do have.  You may also want to consider using one of Kaiya Naturals After Shower Oils to help lock in moisture over your entire body.

To Sum Up

Alcohol gives you dry skin.  It’s not that big of a deal, unless you drink daily.  If you do drink daily then you should be drinking more water, eating better food, exercising, managing your stress, and using a good moisturizer and/or body oil to help counteract the skin-damaging effects of excessive alcohol consumption.

If there is anything that you would like me to talk about feel free to reach out to me either here, via email: kedric@kaiya-naturals.com, on twitter @kaiyanaturals, or on Facebook @kaiyanaturals.  Also  please, please, please share or comment on this article.  Seriously, I’d love to hear your feedback in the comment section below.

Stay Natural,

Kedric

These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration.  This is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.  For educational purposes only.


References:

[1] http://www.dermnetnz.org/topics/cutaneous-adverse-effects-of-alcohol/

[2] http://www.jci.org/articles/view/102336/pdf/render

[3] http://mentalhealthdaily.com/2015/10/06/how-long-does-alcohol-stay-in-your-system/

[4] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3367262/

[5] http://www.dermnetnz.org/topics/vitamin-a-deficiency/

[6] http://www.canyonranch.com/your-health/whole-beauty/head-toe-beauty/beauty-basics/the-skin-benefits-vitamin

[7] http://elitedaily.com/life/eat-before-drinking-photos/1258285/

[8] https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/VitaminA-HealthProfessional/

[9] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1705129/

[10] http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0024320508000714

[11] http://www.webmd.com/balance/stress-management/stress-management-relieving-stress

Clogged Pores? You Need Toner

I get asked this question all the time.  What is toner?  It’s one of the more mysterious skincare products out there, but it shouldn’t be.  The answer is simple.  If you have clogged pores, you should be using a toner.  Whether you have oily skin, acne, or your makeup is giving you breakouts Kaiya Natural’s All-Natural Toners are your secret weapon for beautiful blemish-free skin.

Oily Skin

T-zoneMost of us don’t have just oily skin.  Most of us have combination skin.  The infamous t-zone where your forehead, nose, and chin have that shiny glow from too much much oil production while your cheeks are dry.  Toner reduces the amount of oil on your skin and also constricts your pores.  You should use toner on your t-zone after cleansing your face with a mild cleanser and apply moisturizer to dryer areas like your cheeks.  Which type of toner you use depends on what type of skin you have outside of your t-zone (see below).

Acne-Prone Skin

everything-you-need-to-know-about-acneSome of us have it worse than just an oily t-zone.  Some of us have acne-prone skin where our pores become clogged with excess oil and dead skin cells, and then become infected with Propionibacterium acnes (P. acnes).  The right toner can not only help to reduce excess oil and clear away dead skin cells and excess dirt,  but contains antiseptic ingredients that help to fight P. acnes.  You should be using Seedalina Toner on acne-prone areas after cleansing your face with a gentle cleanser, like Seedalina Face & Body Wash which is only available at a Kaiya Naturals Event.   Both the Seedalina Face & Body Wash, and the Seedalina Toner are designed for problem skin, like acne-prone skin.  You should also think twice before using a moisturizer which can worsen acne.

Makeup

Washing Off MakeupNo matter how good it looks, you’ll have to wash it off sooner or later, and it’s hard to get that last bit of makeup off your face.  Not only is it hard to wash off,  makeup residue can clog your pores making you breakout.  Toner can help you get that last bit of dirt, grime, and makeup that just won’t seen to come off.  You should use it after cleansing your face with a mild cleanser and apply moisturizer right away.  Which type of toner you use depends on what type of skin you have (see below).

Which Toner Is Right For You?

Kaiya Naturals offers three different formulations of toner:

  • Seedalina Toner is designed for problem skin.  Combined with the Higher Power Face & Body Wash it can help reduce breakouts on acne-prone skin.
  • Chickie Gold Toner is a nourishing toner for those who have dull, dry skin either under their make-up, or outside of their t-zone.  Use it with with either the Higher Power Face & Body Wash, or the Flower Power Face & Body Wash for a natural cleanse.
  • White Petal Aloe Toner is a soothing toner for those with sensitive, irritated skin.  Use it with the Baby Power Face & Body Wash to get a gentle, soothing cleanse.

If there is anything that you would like me to talk about feel free to reach out to me either here, via email: kedric@kaiya-naturals.com, on twitter @kaiyanaturals, or on Facebook @kaiyanaturals.  Also  please, please, please share or comment on this article.  Seriously, I’d love to hear your feedback in the comment section below.

Stay Natural,

Kedric

These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration.  This is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.  For educational purposes only.

Winter is Coming (And How To Prepare Your Skin For It)

It’s official.  Summer is over.  Gone are the days of 110 degree heat.  No more beach days and pools parties where you break out the grill to show your mastery over fire.  That deep beautiful tan that you got will soon turn to a fair complexion, but that’s not the only thing that will happen to your skin.  As winter approaches your skin is going to start to dry out.  Just as you would switch your wardrobe, so should you change your skincare routine to prepare for the changing weather.  But first, lets find out why your skin dries out in the first place.

Low Humidity

relative_humidity_percent_pct
Relative Humidity for Pennsylvania

One of the main reasons that your skin dries out is that there is less moisture in the air.  Humidity levels peak on October 2nd here in Pennsylvania and continue to drop until they are at their lowest on April 20th.  When there is less moisture in the air two things happen that cause you to lose your own moisture.  First, you lose it through respiration.  If you’ve ever fogged up a mirror with your breath what your looking at is moisture that you lose every time you exhale.  Your body naturally humidifies the air that you breathe.  As the air gets drier your body is forced to use more of its own moisture to do that, and loses more of it in every exhalation.[1]

Next, you lose moisture through your skin, which is a semi-permeable membrane.  While we don’t know the exact mechanism for why this happens, we know that it does.[1]  This is why it is so important to use a heavy moisturizer, like Kaiya Naturals Chickie Gold Moisturizer, in the winter.  Light summer moisturizers, like Kaiya Naturals White Petal Aloe Moisturizer, just don’t have the hydrating power that’s required for the winter.

Heating

radiatorIt can be a controversial topic.  Ask any HVAC technician, a physicist or chemist.  Does heating your home dry out the air?  Yes, and no.[2]  Some types of heating do dry out air.  Some don’t actually dry out the air, but only make it feel drier.  Finally, some actually add moisture to the air.  It all depends on a how your unit heats the air, where it pulls the air it is heating from, what condition it, and the ductwork, is in, as well as how well your home is sealed.[3]  Without knowing all these factors it’s hard to say whether or not your heat is drying out your home.  If it is, you may want to invest in a humidifier.

Long Hot Showers

I know what you’re thinking, “Don’t take my hot winter showers away from me!”  Well, I’m sorry to say that those luxurious, relaxing showers are stripping your skin of necessary oils that help lock in moisture.  The hotter the water,  the longer your shower, and the more frequently you take it the more oils will be stripped from your skin causing it to dry out.[4]  To combat this,  you’ll need to do the unthinkable….take short, cold showers less often.  I know, I might as well be telling you cut off your right arm, but your skin will thank you.

Harsh Soaps

avoid-harsh-soapsSpeaking of long, hot showers, the type of soap that you use will also strip your skin of oils.  Harsh soaps bind with dirt and oil to cleanse your skin.  While it is good to remove the dirt that clogs pores, removing the oil will cause your skin to dry out.  It also leads to a vicious cycle where your skin starts to overproduce oil.  Harsh soaps are soaps that have an alkaline pH.[5]  These are typically soaps that form lots of suds.  Find a cleanser that has a slightly acidic pH, like Kaiya Naturals Face & Body Wash.

How to Prepare

In the winter low humidity, both outside and inside, causes your skin to lose moisture.  Add to this the oil stripping activities of long, hot showers and harsh soaps, and your skin becomes as dry as the Sahara Desert.  While you can’t do anything about the low humidity outside, you can use a heavy moisturizer, like Kaiya Naturals Chickie Gold Moisturizer, to keep your skin from losing moisture.  Also, you can put a humidifier inside your home to help keep the air more humid.  To keep vital oils from being stripped away from your skin you can take short showers, with water as cold as you can handle, while using a gentle cleanser, like Kaiya Naturals Face & Body Wash.

If there is anything that you would like me to talk about feel free to reach out to me either here, via email: kedric@kaiya-naturals.com, on twitter @kaiyanaturals, or on Facebook @kaiyanaturals.  Also  please, please, please share or comment on this article.  Seriously, I’d love to hear your feedback in the comment section below.

Stay Natural,

Kedric

These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration.  This is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.  For educational purposes only.


References:

[1] http://www.achooallergy.com/learning/the-effects-of-humidity-on-the-human-body/

[2] http://skeptics.stackexchange.com/questions/6620/do-electric-heaters-with-open-heating-elements-dry-the-air-or-burn-up-oxygen

[3] http://www.energyvanguard.com/blog-building-science-HERS-BPI/bid/73469/Does-a-Gas-Furnace-Dry-Out-the-Air-in-Your-Home

[4] http://www.newsweek.com/do-hot-showers-dry-your-skin-96379

[5] http://www.thefrisky.com/2014-11-10/all-the-science-you-need-to-know-about-your-skins-ph-level/