The Skinny on Healthy Skin

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    Tips on Banishing Wrinkles

    Local experts share industry secrets for banishing wrinkles and nurturing radiant skin. – By Sharael Kolberg

    Although most of us strive for healthy-looking skin because we want to look young and beautiful, it is not just a superficial quest. Skin is our body’s largest organ and is worth the VIP treatment. Whether you are young or old, have acne or wrinkles, or are blessed with picture-perfect skin genes, taking care of your skin is essential to your health and wellbeing. In our healthy skin guide, we provide practical tips and insider information on the latest treatments to get you on the road to radiant skin.

    You are What You Eat and Drink

    The road to healthy skin starts with being a conscious eater. Be aware of what you are consuming and your efforts will pay off. Trish Reiland, certified nutritionist and massage therapist at Aquaterra Spa, says, “The vibrancy and quality of one’s skin is a direct indicator of the health and vibrancy on the inside. Healthy, vibrant skin is a result of consuming the highest quality water and nutrition.”

    There are three significant elements she recommends to nourish the skin from the inside out: pure water consumption, food quality and food type. “Water purifies. Accumulated internal toxins are cleansed by daily consumption of approximately half your body weight in ounces of pure water. The release of these impurities creates radiance in the skin,” Trish explains.

    She stresses the importance of eating high-quality food, such as natural, whole, pure, raw and organic foods. “Quality of food matters!” Trish emphasizes. “The body does not recognize synthetic substances. Manufactured, unhealthy foods that contain artificial and processed ingredients congest, dehydrate and clog the internal environment, expressing the same condition in the skin.”

    For the best results, she also recommends eating certain types of foods. Focus on items that are high in fiber, plant-focused and nutrient-dense. “These foods provide essential enzymes, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants that not only nourish the skin but also detoxify, hydrate and support cellular health and maintain its youthful, healthy glow,” Trish explains.

    Spa Montage’s Lead Esthetician Briana Richardson says, “Whenever you start making changes in your diet, whether for beauty and your skin or your overall health, it is best to start focusing on all the things you are going to start bringing into your diet instead of what you are not going to have. At first you can start by only adding and removing nothing. As your taste buds change and you start trying new nutritious foods, you will naturally decrease the amount of unhealthy foods you used to eat. Plus, when we focus on what we can’t have, that is all we want.”

    She suggests a diet rich in greens—especially from the cruciferous family—chlorophyll-rich foods, essential fatty acids and the allium family. “Try to consume these foods daily,” Briana says. “Not only are these foods high in nutrients, they also help aid your elimination organs, such as the liver, and promote an alkaline effect in the body. You will be working toward a healthier you and radiant skin.”

    For a little extra help to kick-start your skincare routine, try Spa Montage’s 90-minute Aromatic Renewal Facial. With a customized blend of botanical essences, the treatment helps to tone and purify the skin while the relaxing lymphatic facial massage removes cellular waste. You’ll leave glowing on the outside and, after spending the day enjoying the luxurious spa facilities, you’ll be radiating on the inside too.

    Out With the Old

    One of the quickest ways you can give your skin a fresh look is by ridding it of dead skin cells. Liza Esayian, director of The Spa at Pelican Hill, says, “Removing dead skin cells caused by environmental effects results in a brighter complexion, fewer dry patches and a change in overall appearance to give it a brighter look.”

    Why not get pampered while exfoliating? Try the Natura’s Diamond Experience at The Spa at Pelican Hill. This 80-minute luxurious facial fizzes on your face and utilizes oxygen to flush out impurities. It includes a deep cleaning and a marine DNA mask made with seaweed. Three targeted massages give your skin a recognizable difference—similar to a cosmetic lift. “Taking the outer layer of dead skin off allows pores not to get clogged and results in fewer blackheads and cleaner skin,” Liza says.

    Jill Robinson, lead esthetician at Athena Day Spa, relies on Retinol products to exfoliate the skin. She recommends starting with a cleanser that doesn’t strip natural oil and dry out skin. “Use something without skin surface fillers or perfumes,” Jill says. “They may look and smell wonderful, but are not the best for the skin.” She then suggests using a Retinol product such as the esenté Bio-Peel Retinol Serum, which promotes cellular turnover. “Retinol is magnificent on skin,” Jill explains. “There is not one person that shouldn’t be using it, and it’s something that can be done at home. My philosophy is that you don’t have to spend a lot of money to have beautiful skin.”

    Instantly revive your skin with Athena Day Spa’s Signature Tetra Peel to refine the surface of your skin, reduce dead skin, and supply antioxidants to alleviate inflammation. This 60-minute treatment features a mixture of acids blended to make a four-layer peel that leaves the skin soft and smooth.

    “You want cell turnover, where dead cell tissues exfoliate from the skin and the body makes new tissue,” Jill says.

    Facial Fitness Routine

    Your face has muscles too! Just like doing sit ups to keep your abs tight, exercise your skin cells and muscles to give your face better looking skin. Lucy Wojskowicz, owner of Laguna Canyon Spa says, “When facial muscles are massaged and exercised regularly, all the metabolic processes are stimulated, which means that the facial circulation is improved, capillaries are strengthened, the facial lymph system is cleansed, and the skin becomes blemish free.”

    Not sure how to exercise your face? Let the experts lend a hand. The Laguna Canyon Spa offers a Honey Facelift Massage that promotes circulation, detoxification and relaxation for the facial muscles. The treatment includes vigorous stroking movements that assist in removing impurities, opening pores and eliminating toxins by removing dead skin cells. These movements relieve facial tension and reduce the appearance of deep lines.

    At the Surf & Sand, Aquaterra’s custom skin fitness facial caters to each individual’s needs. One of the spa’s treatments that also focuses on revitalizing the skin is the ZO Ossential Stimulator Peel. The peel enhances cell turnover, boosts collagen production, helps to even skin tone and minimize discoloration, reduces fine lines and wrinkles, and improves overall skin tone, texture and clarity—all in less than 30 minutes.

    Dr. Zein Obagi, dermatologist and creator of ZO Skin Health, is a leading authority on skin rejuvenation. His skincare tip is to stick with a simple regimen, using products from only one company. “If you mix and match brands, you’re more likely to have redundancy—too much of one ingredient—or not enough of another,” he says.

    Defy Gravity

    Wrinkles are part of life, but don’t give in without a fight. There are plenty of ways to combat the signs of aging.

    One treatment that seems to be effective is microdermabrasion. At the Art of Spa, located in the Art of Fitness, Spa Manager Annette Morris says, “The treatment works with the body’s natural healing process and there is no down time. The human body’s skin is an organ that can repair itself. This is how the process takes place.”

    The process involves creating a microscopic abrasion to the skin that spurs the creation of a new layer of skin at the basal layer. “New cells and collagen are developed. So as we shed skin from the top layer of the epidermis, new skin is built at the dermis,” she explains.

    Spa Gaucin, located at The St. Regis Monarch Beach, offers a treatment called the Advanced AHA Facial. “This facial will allow your serums and/or moisturizers to properly penetrate the outermost layers of the skin,” says Spa Director Valory Reed. Post-treatment, she recommends exfoliating twice a week at home to maintain the results. “Use an exfoliant that contains very fine crystals and lactic acid, and a serum with retinol once a day before applying your moisturizer,” Valory says.

    For a non-invasive exfoliation treatment, the Marciena Complete Retreat Day Spa offers a Silk Peel Dermal Infusion treatment. Owner Yvonne Nahl says, “Unlike conventional microdermabrasion, the silk peel treatment cools the skin, creating a more comfortable experience while improving acne and sun damage spots and rehydrating your face.”

    Dr. Tony Nakhla, dermatologist at the OC Skin Institute and author of “The Skin Commandments: 10 Rules to Healthy, Beautiful Skin,” recommends skin resurfacing with a fractional CO2 laser treatment (performed by a board-certified dermatologist).

    “This innovative skin resurfacing method uses energy light to create tiny holes in the skin, which as they heal, stimulates your natural collagen production,” says Dr. Nakhla. “Unlike skin lasers of the past that completely obliterate the outer skin layers, the fractional C02 laser emits laser beams in tiny, powerful bursts—that means a shorter downtime for you with effects that can last up to five years with diligent sun protection.”

    The eMatrix with Syneron’s Sublative Rejuvenation treatment is another non-invasive resurfacing procedure. The non-laser and non-light-based aesthetic device is capable of creating skin-resurfacing impact by utilizing RF sublation—fractionated bipolar radio frequency technology—to place the heat energy effectively into the dermis where it can produce significant improvements. The procedure is done in a dermatologist’s office and only takes about 20 minutes with virtually no downtime afterward. A series of three to four bout a month apart are recommended for maximum benefit to scars, wrinkles and fine lines.

    For those not quite ready to take the leap into something like Botox, The Ritz-Carlton Spa in Laguna Niguel has its Signature Facial that utilizes anti-aging technology for optimal results. “Some of our guests want to look their best without having surgical procedures or injections,” says Lead Esthetician Lola Clark. “Those who do have procedures can prolong the effects with our treatments.”

    The facial incorporates the Nu Face Microcurrent Toning device and the Clarisonic Opal to instantly lift and firm the skin, and reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. If you’re looking for lasting results but don’t have the time or money to head to the spa every week, you can do it at home. The devices can be purchased at The Ritz-Carlton Spa boutique. “Eighty percent of our skin care takes place at home,” Lola says. “Using products that are designed for optimal results and used consistently will give you the best results and slow down the aging process.”

    Healing From the Sea

    Some Laguna Beach spas take advantage of our coastal environment and utilize ocean elements that are known for their healing and nourishing properties. One popular ocean ingredient is seaweed.

    At Laguna Beach Massage, they offer a Seaweed Soak & Massage meant to cleanse and purify your body. “Soaking in a hot seaweed bath, your body perspires and releases toxins, which are replaced by minerals and vitamins, like iodine, potassium and vitamin K, by osmosis,” says Christine Aegean, owner of Laguna Beach Massage. “It stimulates lymph drainage, fat burning and can reduce trapped cellulite waste.”

    The seaweed used in their treatment is harvested fresh from the waters of Wood’s Cove Beach. “On the day of your appointment, we put on our ‘mermaid tales’ and swim out to harvest the local seaweed when it has broken off and is drifting towards shore,” says Christine.

    For more nourishing seaweed skin treatments, Spa Gaucin offers ocean-themed treatments, such as the Pristine Waters Facial and the Ocean Oxygen Facial, both featuring products from OSEA (ocean, sun, earth, atmosphere). The OSEA skincare line utilizes the amazing restorative powers of Gigartina seaweed, hand-harvested from the Patagonian Sea—one of the most pristine bodies of water on the planet.

    Whatever your skin type, be sure to make taking care of it part of your daily health and fitness routine. A little TLC goes a long way in keeping this largest, most visible organ healthy and beautiful. LBM

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