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Our Blog

Here is where you'll find lots of tips and advice in relation to our area of expertise - skin, beauty & wellbeing

 

Prescriptive skincare vs "off the shelf" skincare

12 May 2020

Dermacosmeceutical vs Traditional Skincare


Skin Cleansing                                       


Traditional cosmetic skin cleansers can leave the skin feeling tight and dry.  This is because they are soap based with an alkaline PH which strips the skin's natural acid mantle.


Derma-cosmeceutical cleansers work to restore skin health without irritation by using acidic based cleansing ingredients that leave the skin feeling moist and plump.


Day & Night Moisturisers


By using rich moisturisers that simply sit on the surface, the skin loses it's ability to hydrate itself, thereby creating a negative feedback cycle.   What do I mean by this?

  

Constantly adding oil and moisture to the skin allows your skin to become lazy.  This in turn means that it craves more moisture as it stops hydrating itself, so you have to use even richer cosmetic moisturisers to combat this.  The skin then becomes even lazier....you can see where this is going right?  So, you have to use something even richer and so it goes on.  That negative feedback cycle has been created, simply by using incorrect products.  This is because traditional cosmetic skincare is only beautifying on a superficial level.  You can usually feel a layer on your skin when you've applied a cosmetic moisturiser.


In contrast, prescriptive skincare re-educates the skin to function at its best.  Through healing and restructuring the skin by treating the cause, not the symptom, the skin is able to hydrate itself.  With superior product penetration (no layer left following application), the signs of damage can be treated with amazing results.  


There is also an ongoing relationship between you (the client) and your skin specialist.  We all know that our skin changes constantly whether it's with the seasons, medication, our lifestyle, our hormones etc. so it's important to have the constant support and advice of your skin specialist who can address those changes by tweaking your daily skin regime and offering prescriptive solutions.  You don't get that with "off the shelf" skincare in my experience.


Hopefully, this will help you make more informed choices about your skincare going forward.  As always,


Yours in great skin, 


Lisa xx

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SPF Explained

05 May 2020

Chemical vs Physical Sunscreens


:) Physical - Reflects Light                                            :(  Chemical - Absorbs Light


- Immediate protection                                                - Takes 30-45 mins to work

- Non-Irritant                                                                   - Can cause irritation (prickly heat)

- Does not penetrate the skin                                      - Can penetrate into the skin

- Safe for all skin types even sensitive                       - Not safe for all skin types

- Anti-inflammatory & soothing                                  - No natural soothing properties

- Natural minerals zinc oxide & Titanium Dioxide


UVA vs UVB Rays


Both UVA and UVB rays are in our atmosphere and can cause damage to the skin increasing the risk of skin cancers, however, UVA penetrates more deeply into the skin hitting the dermis causing visible wrinkles and ageing.  UVB hits the epidermis (top layer) causing sun burn.


UVA can penetrate through cloud and glass so it's important to protect our skin against the damaging effects of UVA all year round - not just on sunny days.  We recommend wearing SPF 40 EVERY DAY.


Always remember, our goal is to achieve optimal cell function. If we have optimal cellular function and we are able to delay cellular senescence, we can achieve the goal of a healthy skin.


Yours in great skin, 


Lisa xx

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Skin Ageing

30 April 2020

Today we will look at a key chemical reaction that occurs within the skin and has already been taken into consideration with Nimue’s Product Development.


Activation of MMP’s (Matrix Metalloproteinases))


Within the dermis there is the ECM (extra cellular matrix) that provides structural and biochemical support to the surrounding cells. It is made up of GAGs and Hyaluronic acid and it provides the skin with support and plumpness.


Fibroblast cells, producing the collagen and elastin fibres and appendages are suspended in the extra cellular matrix.


What are MMP’s?


MMP’s are matrix metalloproteinases found in the dermis. They are enzymes that control tissue breakdown in the dermis. MMP’s plays an important role in wound healing so that new connective tissue can be formed.


When do MMP’s cause ageing?


When there is an excess of matrix metalloproteinases present, caused by UVA and UVB exposure, MMP’s can increase as a result of ROS (Reactive Oxidative Stress). Additional factors for excess MMP production are medication and the natural ageing process.

The MMP enzymes become more active and degrade the fibroblast cells and connective tissue at a faster rate than normal.


The result is ageing, loss of elasticity, thinning skin, increase in skin redness and moisture loss.


How can we prevent this process?


The solution is to include MMP inhibitors as ingredients in our skincare products. Nimue’s current homecare contains MMP inhibitors such as cyclotetrapeptide, milk peptides and manilkare multinervus to balance the degradation of older connective tissue cells with the replacement of new cells.


Always remember, our goal is to achieve optimal cell function. If we have optimal cellular function and we are able to delay cellular senescence, we can achieve the goal of a healthy skin.


Yours in great skin, 


Lisa xx

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Can't get to the salon for your usual resurfacing treatment?

29 April 2020

I'm sure those of you who have a regular professional skin treatment are missing those visits to the salon but now is a great time to take care of your skin in the comfort of your own home.  We all enjoy a little pamper time..right?  So what better way than to give yourself a home resurfacing treatment.


Nimue's homecare range is very different from "off the shelf" skincare as it is derma-cosmeceutical with a prescriptive approach to skincare.  However, certain treatments may be carried out at home if you (a) are already using Nimue homecare and have therefore had a skin consultation and know your skin classification or (b) have had or have booked an online skin consultation and have been advised by your Nimue Skin Specialist that this treatment would be recommended for your skin classification.


Take a look at the video and if you fancy giving it a go, simply click the link below to order your products or book your virtual consultation.  We are providing contactless deliveries locally or alternatively, can post your products directly to you.  


Yours in great skin, 


Lisa xx

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Help…I have a sensitive skin!”  (Part 2 of 2)

19 April 2020

In Part 2 of this series, we will look at some typical questions regarding a sensitised skin, what to be aware of if the skin is sensitised and solutions there are to treat a skin that is prone to hypersensitivity. 


What are the causative factors that we need to avoid if we have a sensitised skin? 


• Heat and humidity, which includes using hot water on the skin as well as a climate where the temperatures are high

• Extreme temperature changes i.e. going from a cold temperature outside to central heating inside

• Exposure to UV radiation as well as visible light such as Infra Red, found in any appliance that emits heat, and High Energy Visible Light, also known as blue light, which we are exposed to for long periods when using electronic items such as laptops, smart phone devices, tablets, HD televisions, etc.

• Both air and water pollutants as well as dirt and dust in the air

• Using incorrect products which contains harsh ingredients such as alcohol in certain toners, granular or abrasive “scrubs”, highly fragranced products as well as incorrect treatment applications eg. chemical peels with a high percentage of acids on a skin which is sensitised and not indicated for those specific treatments. The skin barrier may become compromised as a result, exposing the skin to more elements, causing further skin sensitisation.

• Stress, as it disrupts the immune system both within the body and the skin

• An imbalance in hormones may trigger hypersensitivity in the skin

• Certain medication such as antibiotics may create skin sensitivity


What specific ingredients in skin care products should be avoided if the skin is sensitised?


As previously mentioned, anything which contains alcohol should definitely be avoided.

Certain cleansers may contain Sodium Lauryl Sulphate (SLS), a foaming agent found in many cleansing gels and shampoo, but is extremely drying on a sensitive skin.

Very granular exfoliators, a popular product to use if someone loves the feeling of a “scrub” on the skin, may contain apricot pips, peach pips. This may irritate the skin, causing an increase in skin sensitivity.

Mineral oils and lanolin-based ingredients should be avoided as it creates an occlusive layer on the surface of the skin, preventing the natural functioning of the skin and creating a more sensitized skin.

Lastly, perfumes, colourants and high percentages of alpha hydroxy acids should be avoided. 


How can your diet influence a sensitised skin? 


There is a saying “You are what you eat”, and as the skin is the largest living organ of the body, it truly reflects what is happening internally. A diet which is high in sugar, caffeine, alcohol, simple carbohydrates results in inflammation and dehydration of the skin. The result is skin sensitization.

Poor digestion and food assimilation can also play a role in developing a sensitised skin. If there is difficulty in digesting food, not only is the body not receiving sufficient nutrition, but the undigested foods create gas, bloating and inflammation in the digestive tract. This kind of inflammation will affect many other body systems, including the skin.


With so much to be aware of and avoided, how then does one treat a sensitised skin?

It is important to remember that a sensitised skin is predominantly self-inflicted and as a result of lifestyle choices.

The first step in treating a sensitised skin is to remove the trigger or source of sensitivity, where possible. A thorough understanding on what causes the skin to react is essential. Some triggers may not be so easy to avoid…It is not always possible to relocate cities if the climate is the cause of a sensitised skin condition!

The skin will definitely need protection against what could possibly have caused the skin sensitivity.

The skin barrier needs to have a dual action approach – not only protection of the barrier, but also repair by building up and replacing the essential building blocks of the skin barrier.

Nimue has an excellent product that is applied before a day or night moisturiser called the Pre & Post Serum. This light textured product repairs and protects the skin barrier, decreasing the chances of developing skin sensitivity.

Additionally, we have the Nimue-TDS™ which not only supports the Pre & Post Serum with barrier repair and protection, but it also contains ingredients which are specific in treating certain skin conditions such as ageing, hyperpigmentation, a problematic skin with acne breakouts as well as a skin prone to redness and irritation, which, of course, is a sensitized skin!


Lastly, LESS IS MORE!!! We always tend to believe that the more of something we use, the better it will be, but it may have the opposite effect. When treating a sensitized skin condition, a slow and gradual approach with skincare should always be followed.

By following the correct approach in treating the skin, a sensitized skin is not something that we need to be burdened with our entire lifetime. It IS possible to create a strong, resistant and healthy skin again. 


If you would like to know more, contact us to book a free virtual skin consultation, we'll be happy to help.


Yours in great skin, 


Lisa xx

Before

Help…I have a sensitive skin!”  (Part 1 of 2)

18 April 2020

According to statistics from the American Academy of Dermatology, up to 90% of the population perceive their skin to be sensitive....that's a lot right?


Firstly, the question is…is it really sensitivity we are dealing with?


A Sensitive Skin is defined as a skin type and it is a skin that is easily responsive and stimulated, however, it usually is genetic with a predisposition to skin redness. The skin may have a lower amount of pigment, a thin epidermis and blood vessels may be seen close to the surface of the skin. 


A sensitive skin is more common in a fairer skin, but it may not be as reactive as a client perceives their skin to be! 


A Sensitised Skin, on the other hand, is a skin that experiences sensitivity primarily due to external factors and develops due to a poor lifestyle. This includes exposure to harsh environmental elements, pollution and incorrect cosmetics used as well as self-inflicted factors such as stress, poor diet, smoking and alcohol, to name just a few. A sensitised skin condition can affect anyone.


A sensitised skin is also often the result of a compromised skin barrier, allowing irritants, microbes and allergens to penetrate the skin and cause adverse reactions due to the skin being weaker. It is also due to a deterioration in the acid mantle, the cell membrane and the Langerhans cells.

 

There is a saying that “we are a product of our own lifestyle” and a damaged skin is the result!


The biggest problem that we have to prevent when dealing with a sensitised skin is inflammation. 


So what is inflammation?


Inflammation is the body’s response to a negative stimulus, be it infection or irritation. It is triggered chemically and by white blood cells, most notably neutrophils. 

Inflammation is a good sign in that it shows that the white blood cells are actively working at the site to heal. 


However, there is a problem…


Inflammation is a necessary self-defense mechanism – the immune system’s response to infection, irritation, or injury. The problem is that sometimes, thanks to genetic and environmental factors, inflammation becomes chronic. Like a runaway train, it gains speed, stimulating the production of skin-eroding enzymes. 


We can actually say that apart from sun exposure, inflammation is the next enemy of the skin. So if we have determined that your skin is sensitized….what do we need to be aware of to be able to protect the skin and prevent inflammation from occurring within the skin? 


Make sure to look out for Part 2 of this article where we will go into what to avoid and what Nimue offers as solutions for a sensitized skin.


If you feel that you have sensitised skin and need some advice, send an email and we will be happy to help prescribe the correct solution for your skin.


Lisa xx

How can I tell the difference between dry vs dehydrated skin?

15 April 2020

I often get asked this question and it's really quite easy to tell whether your skin is dry or dehyrated.  There's a little test you can do:

Pinch your skin for a couple of seconds and then let it go.  If it quickly returns to normal then it's not dehydrated, however, if it takes a few seconds and looks a little crinkly then, yes - it's dehydrated.  


What's important about determining the difference?


Put simply, dry skin is lacking in oil whereas dehydrated skin is lacking in water.  The two things need to be treated in a different way.


We all are familiar with dry skin. It can flake, itch, and cause an overall dull, rough, or lacklustre appearance. Usually, it’s determined by genetics or hormonal or environmental factors that affect your skin’s natural oil production. If you’re dealing with dry skin, you’re dealing with a lack of oil/sebum.


Dehydrated skin, on the other hand, is caused by a lack of water. When you don’t drink enough water, it shows on your skin, leaving it less elastic and supple. Any skin type can suffer from dehydration, even oily skin and understanding dry skin vs. dehydrated skin is the key to knowing which day and night time treatments are right for you.


Nimue Day is a multi-functional moisturiser for the day that increases cell turnover and balances oiliness and dryness • Improves hydration and has barrier repairing properties  with Active Ingredients:


0.5 % Triple AHA Complex - Exfoliates, hydrates, rejuvenates, lightens and brightens

3% Lacto Complex - Balances oil levels

Aloe Ferox - Humectant

Geranium & Lavender oil - Balancing and anti-bacterial 


Moisturising balances oil production, keeps skin hydrated and delays the appearance of fine lines, protecting against pollution.


Night time moisturisers such as Nimue Night work in a different way, stimulating cell renewal and nourishing the skin whilst we sleep so that it stays soft and supple.


So, how can we prevent dehydration?  Well, it's mainly caused by TEWL (trans-epidermal water loss).  We need to drink plenty of water - at least 8 glasses throughout the day.  We can also use a product specifically designed to prevent TEWL such as our Pre & Post Serum - another hero product that locks in water and helps with barrier repair.  


Hopefully, you have found this useful.  If you're still unsure, just drop me an email, I'm happy to help.


In the meantime, stay safe & well.


Lisa xx









What can I do to maintain skin health when I can't get into the salon for my usual active skin treatment?

15 April 2020

I share your concerns!  I too am missing my regular micro-needling treatments but with Nimue, we always have a solution!  The Glyco Mask allows all you skin savvy people to continue your skin treatment programme from the comfort of your own home! Maintaining those results you’ve worked so hard for!


Our coveted Glyco Mask can be used once a week, takes just 10 minutes and leaves skin refreshed, glowing, taute and plumped - ideal for Environmentally Damaged & Problematic skin. 


This product really packs a punch with it's high concentrate of actives, including 


Amphoteric Glycolic Acid (10%!!) - Exfoliates, rejuvenates and renews skin cells. Salicylic acid - Exfoliates and improves cell turnover.

Sorghum Bicolor Stalk juice - Tightening and firming effect.

Kaolin - Absorbs oil, lightly exfoliates.

Phytosterols - Improves the skin’s barrier function.


step by step: 1. Cleansing Gel, 2. Condition 3. Exfoliating Enzyme 4. Glyco Mask (10 mins, then remove with compress or flannel) 5. Apply TDS serum (optional) 6. Apply night preparation


To top it all we've reduced the price to just £20 RRP! What are you waiting for? This is a one time only offer whilst stocks last. Send us an email if you'd like one, we can deliver to your door!


Stay safe,

Lisa xx







How can I protect my skin from the damaging effects of UV?

13 April 2020

I don't know about you, but I feel so much better when the sun is shining.  It's lovely to be able to sit outside in the garden, listening to the sound of the birds and the gentle breeze.  We can almost pretend we're on holiday in some beautiful Greek taverna overlooking the sea......however, it's so important not to forget our SPF, every day, not just on sunny days.  Why?  Daily use of a sunscreen is of critical importance in maintaining skin health, protecting the skin against premature ageing as well as possible skin cancer.  It is important to choose a product that offers protection against, UVA, UVB and IR.  Most people understand why it's important to use SPF on sunny days, however, why do we need it when there's little to no sun present?  I'll try to explain:

There are 3 chemical processes that take place, at a cellular level in the skin, that accelerate the ageing process: 1. Generation of Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS) 2. Glycation resulting in Advanced Glycation End Products (AGE’s) 3. Activation of Matrix Metalloproteinases (MMP’s)

These 3 factors are mainly dependant on the lifestyle of the individual as well as the environment in which they live.

Triggers and causes that increase ROS generation: UV, HEV, IR, Pollution, Cigarette Smoke, Alcohol, Stress, Disease & Infections, Unhealthy Diet  so - let's just tackle UV & IR (infra-red) as this is what I want to focus on right now.

ROS is a free radical and is formed as a by-product of natural metabolic processes. The body uses anti-oxidants and enzymes to keep the amount of ROS under control. Depletion of these enzymes and anti-oxidants will result in Oxidative Stress. 

The Nimue Solution: • Fused Ring Cyanoacrylate blocks/stops the formation of ROS/free radicals completely by quenching the excited state of these molecules, preventing the transformation into singlet oxygen. (Environmental Shield SPF 50) • Anti-oxidants scavenges and neutralises ROS/free radicals that has already been formed (All Nimue Products).

Next let's talk about MMP's:

Triggers and causes that increases MMP expression: The natural ageing process, UVA & UVB exposure and certain medications

What are MMP’s and the effects: • Matrix Metalloproteinases are natural enzymes found in the Dermis and they include collagenase and elastase enzymes. • These enzymes are responsible for the breakdown of unhealthy connective tissue which will stimulate the remodelling of collagen and elastin fibres. • When the amount of MMP’s increase, due to the various triggers and causes, these enzyme start breaking down healthy collagen and elastin, degrading these proteins at a faster rate than normal.

The result is premature ageing: Loss of elasticity, thinning skin, increase in redness and moisture loss.  

What is the point of all this information?  UV triggers the formation of ROS and MMP's, hence the need to use SPF every day.  If you've read to the end, well done you!  Hopefully, I have encouraged you to add an SPF into your daily skincare regime.  If you have any questions, just drop us an email.  In the meantime, have fun in the sun (safely).

Stay safe,

Lisa xx