The Skinny on Summertime Skin Care

Archive for June 2013

The Skinny on Summertime Skin Care

The summer months are upon us, and in Missouri that means ball games, gardening, wineries, and lakes.  Fun in the SUN!  And unless you’ve been living in the dark (in which case this doesn’t apply to you), you know the importance of sun safety.  You know that over-exposure to the sun can cause painful sunburns, wrinkles, skin discoloration, and worst of all, skin cancer.

Yet even though you know these things, I’ll bet your tan-lines that at some point, your skin has been damaged by the sun.  The good news is, whether it be from your days of tanning beds and baby oil or from extra innings at last week’s Cardinal’s game, there are ways to reverse signs of sun damage and prevent further damage in the future.

The Heat is On

Even the most avid sunscreen re-appliers have had those moments of “pinkness.”  When the sting of the sun is still upon your skin, steer clear of thick creams and exfoliants.  Stick to something cooling and light.

Aloe has long been the go-to for sunburns, and that’s simply because it works.  Aloe softens and revitalizes chapped, moisture-starved skin and helps the healthy skin below retain moisture.  Try Aloe Mint Hydrating Cream Gel by Eminence (see offer below) for a cooling and calming treatment that will help reduce skin irritation and aid in repairing the damaging effects of the sun.

Erase the Roughness

Once damage has been done, you may notice sun spots and skin discoloration.  Exfoliating your skin once to twice a week can help remove old, dead skin cells that may be causing portions of your skin to appear dark and dry.

Another way to reverse signs of sun damage is to find a product that reduces the pigmentation of dark spots and areas of discoloration.  One ingredient to look for that helps with the reduction of pigmentation is stone crop.

Stone crop is a natural succulent, used for centuries as a first-aid plant.  Much like the aloe plant, it is known for it’s ability to store water and survive in long dry periods.  The properties of the stone crop when applied to skin have been known to increase moisture content and decrease pigmentation, leaving skin more radiant and youthful looking.

Defend Your Skin

Believe it or not, your diet can impact your skin’s vulnerability to the sun.  Eating a diet high in antioxidants can actually build up your “internal sunscreen.”  Plants produce antioxidants to protect their own cells from sun, heat, air, and moisture damage.  Reap these same benefits by increasing your intake of antioxidant-rich foods including berries, green-tea, kale, and salmon.

And yes, you’ve heard these before and you’ll hear them again.  Wear sunblock, sunglasses, and hats.  Stay in the shade as much as possible.  Use a sun defense product that is a broadband UVA/UVB, SPF 15 or greater, and use it everyday.  Sun can do damage through car windows, through the clouds, and when you’re in the shade.  Use a daily moisturizer and/or make-up with sun-defense properties.  On a day when you are outdoors, reapply every two hours, adjusting for sweat and water exposure.

Be vigilant about summer skin care now, and bask in its youthful results for years to come.


Check out the Halcyon Spa Boutique for these and other skincare products!

Gifts from the Vineyard

With health studies continuously giving us new reasons to avoid our favorite foods, it’s always a breath of fresh air to hear when benefits of a food are discovered.  In recent years, no such benefits have created more of a buzz than those reportedly found in red wine.

Unfortunately, when this news was traveling the grapevine and red wine was growing in popularity, there was a behind-the-scenes contributor who was overlooked.

The grape!

The Vine of Youth

Like it’s berry relatives (acai berry, blueberry, cranberry), the grape contains flavonoids which give the fruit it’s vibrant color.  These flavonoids have anti-oxidizing powers which can reduce the damage of free-radicals, therefore delaying the aging process.

Matters of the Heart

Because of it’s anti-oxidizing and anti-inflammatory components, the grape is often best known for promoting the function of the cardiovascular system.  Some researchers even credit these components of the grape, through red wine consumption, for explaining the French Paradox theory (despite a diet high in saturated fats, the French have fewer instances of coronary heart disease).

The Ins and Outs

While the skin and flesh of the grape contain many nutrients, the seed is where the highest concentration of nutrients is housed.  From the seed we get grape-seed oil and extract which can be taken internally or used in luxurious hair and skin treatments.  Used externally, grape seed oil and extract uses those same anti-oxidizing and anti-inflammatory powers to decrease puffiness and acne, provide hydration, and even delay signs of aging.

When choosing grapes to eat, keep in mind a darker color means more antioxidants.  And because the skin of the grape is so exposed during the growing process, opting for certified organic grapes can decrease your exposure to and consumption of chemicals.

Whether it be by the bunch, by the glass, or a grape seed oil massage or skin care treatment, enjoy grapes in any form and you’re sure to get better with age.


Treat yourself to a weekend of “grapeness” in Augusta, MO. 

Visit the many beautiful Augusta wineries, experience relaxation and rejuvenation with Spa Package at Halcyon Spa, and rest in luxury at one of the lovely local Augusta B&B’s.

Mention this article at Halcyon Spa and receive a 10% discount through September 13 (not valid with other promotions) on The Wine Country Special Package, and our Mimosa Sugar Scrub and Body Lotion.