Caring For The Skin During Menopause

Menopause is a natural process that occurs in a woman’s body, typically in her 40s to early 50s, marking the end of menstruation and her reproductive years. During this transition, there is a significant decrease in estrogen levels, which can trigger various concerns on the skin. Lets delve deeper into this topic!

Common Skin Changes During Menopause

During Menopause a woman can experiences changes on their skin such as dryness, sensitivity, acne breakouts, loss of elasticity, skin thinning, hyperpigmentation, fine lines, and wrinkles. These changes can be unsettling, but with the right skincare regimen and advice, their symptoms can be managed more effectively.

Ingredients for Menopausal Skin

Knowing what ingredients to use, and when to use them can be overwhelming for the skin during menopause. The most important thing to remember is to use products that are nourishing, and that aren’t going to strip your skin. Consider using ingredients such as:

  • Hyaluronic Acid: Restores moisture and improves elasticity.
  • Azelaic Acid: Helps soothe the skin and reduce redness.
  • Vitamin B5 (Panthenol): Restores the skins barrier, improves hydration, and soothes sensitive, menopausal skin.

Acne-Fighting Ingredients

For menopausal skin prone to acne or congestion, products containing salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide can help clean out pores and regulate oil secretion.

Pigmentation-Fighting Ingredients

Ingredients like retinol, vitamin C, and arbutin are effective in combating pigmentation by inhibiting the production of pigment-producing cells. Start with lower strengths and gradually increase as needed.

Nutrition and Stress Management

A diet rich in fruits, vegetables, and antioxidants supports skin health during menopause. Additionally, managing stress is essential, as it can worsen skin conditions. Incorporate calming activities such as yoga or light exercise to release “feel-good” hormones like endorphins, which positively impact menopausal skin.

Consulting a Dermatologist or Doctor

If you’ve tried the above tips and are still experiencing persistent or severe concerns, don’t hesitate to seek advice from a professional. They may recommend prescription-strength medication that cannot be purchased over the counter.

As you enter Menopausal territory, remember that you are not alone. With the right knowledge, tools, and support, you can embrace this new chapter in your life with confidence and understanding.

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PORES: Can They Be Made Smaller?

While pore sizes vary among individuals and can fluctuate depending on circumstances, it’s an undeniable fact that pore size cannot be altered indefinitely. Pores naturally exist within our skin, facilitating the passage of oil for hydration and allowing hair to protrude for aesthetic purposes—think of eyelashes enhancing our eyes. However, certain reasons and contributing factors underpin why some pores appear larger than others. Lets take a look below:

Factors Affecting Pore Size

  1. Genetics: Genetics largely determine pore size, with some individuals inheriting larger pores from family members.
  2. Age: As we age, the skin loses elasticity, causing pores to appear larger. Additionally, hormonal changes during adolescence can lead to increased oil production and larger pores.
  3. Sun Exposure: UV rays can cause a breakdown in collagen in our skin, making our skin ‘sag’- giving rise to larger looking pores.
  4. Lifestyle Habits: Poor skincare habits such as infrequent skin cleansing or not cleansing at all, can contribute to the accumulation of oil, dirt, and debris in the pores, making them appear larger.
  5. Skin Type: Individuals with oily or combination skin tend to have larger pores, as excess oil production can stretch the pores and make them more visible.

Ingredients To Reduce Pore Size

Several ingredients actively reduce pore size:

  1. Niacinamide: Found in serums, niacinamide helps reduce oil production, which can lead to a decrease in pore size.
  2. Retinoids: These vitamin A derivatives promote cell turnover and collagen production, leading to smoother, tighter skin and potentially reducing pore size.
  3. AHAs (Alpha Hydroxy Acids): Glycolic, lactic, and mandelic acids found in toners can exfoliate the skin, remove dead skin cells, and temporarily reduce the appearance of pores.
  4. BHAs (Beta Hydroxy Acids): Salicylic acid, a common BHA, penetrates deep into the pores, unclogging them and reducing their size.

Professional Treatments For Pore Reduction

While the ingredients listed above can definitely help reduce the size of the pores, unfortunately, they are not a cure, and the pores will eventually go back to their original size once oil and dirt fill the pores again. For individuals wanting a more intensive approach, there are in-salon treatments available to help minimize the pore size:

  1. Chemical Peels: Deep or medium-level chemical peels exfoliate the skin, remove dead skin cells, and promote collagen production, leading to tighter, smoother skin and reduced pore size.
  2. Microneedling: This treatment involves using fine needles to create micro-injuries in the skin, stimulating collagen production and improving skin texture, which can reduce the appearance of pores.
  3. Laser Treatments: Various laser therapies, such as fractional laser therapy or intense pulsed light (IPL), can target the deeper layers of the skin, stimulating collagen production and tightening the skin, thereby reducing pore size.
  4. Microdermabrasion: This exfoliating treatment removes dead skin cells and debris, leading to a smoother complexion and a temporarily reduced pore size.

While pore size remains unalterable in the long term, actively embracing a diligent skincare routine and exploring professional treatments can effectively minimize their appearance. By understanding the factors influencing pore size and using effective skincare ingredients and treatments, individuals can achieve smoother, more refined-looking skin. Remember, consistency is key to maintaining results and promoting overall skin health.

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Top 5 habits for people with great skin

Having radiant, healthy-looking skin isn’t just about genetics; it’s about the repetitive habits that we cultivate in our lives and whether we choose to stick to them. Every task and every challenge is overcome by taking that first, initial step. And the same can be said for you – whether your concern is acne, pigmentation, or wrinkles, a lot can be achieved through habits. If you’ve ever wondered how some people effortlessly maintain healthy skin, it’s likely because they incorporated these 5 steps into their routine. Let’s take a closer look at what you can do to achieve and maintain great skin:

1. Prioritize sun protection

This is, and forever will be, my number one tip. One of the most crucial habits for maintaining healthy skin is to protect it from the sun’s harmful UV rays. Sun exposure can lead to premature aging, dark spots, and skin cancer. Make sunscreen a non-negotiable part of your daily skincare routine, regardless of the weather or time of year. Opt for an SPF of 30 or higher and remember to reapply it every two hours.

2. Stay hydrated

Hydration is crucial for maintaining skin health and elasticity. Think of a sponge left on the side of the sink – the longer it’s left, the drier and more cracked it becomes. Once the sponge is wet, it regains its shape, elasticity, and plumpness. Well, the same happens to the skin. Aim to drink at least eight glasses of water a day and consider incorporating hydrating foods like fruits and vegetables into your diet. Additionally, using a moisturizer that suits your skin type can help lock in moisture and keep your skin soft and supple throughout the day.

3. Follow a consistent skincare routine

Follow a consistent skincare routine: Consistency is key when it comes to skin care. This means creating a routine that incorporates cleansing, toning, and moisturizing regularly. The products you use should be tailored to your skin type, and exfoliation should be done gently to resurface and renew the outer layer of the skin.

4. Get adequate sleep

Get adequate sleep: During sleep, our body repairs and regenerates its cells, including the skin cells. Not getting enough sleep (7-9 hours each night) can mean that the skin is not able to repair, leaving the skin dull, pale, and with dark undereye circles. If you struggle to sleep, practice breathing or meditation exercises before bed.

5. Manage stress

Chronic stress can lead to concerns such as dullness and oiliness, which can result in breakouts on the skin. Prioritizing stress-reducing activities such as yoga, walking, and socializing can help maintain a healthy complexion and reduce any skincare concerns from developing.

In conclusion, achieving great skin is within reach for anyone willing to adopt healthy habits and prioritize skincare. Remember, consistency is key, so stick to your skincare regimen and be patient; your skin will thank you in the long run.

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Vitamin C: Why The Skin Needs It

Welcome readers, to Vitamin C (and no, I’m not talking about that delicious smoothie from your local juicer) I’m talking about the powerhouse topical skincare ingredient, professionally known as L-ascorbic Acid.

As an acne sufferer my whole life, you can image the amount of ingredients I’ve gone through to help reduce the scarring, redness, and oiliness on my skin. Without a doubt, vitamin C is a constant, and one of my favorites in my routine. So, what exactly makes Vitamin C as great as I say? Let’s get straight into it!


Protection Against Free Radicals

“Free rad-What does that even mean?” Unfortunately, environmental stressors, such as UV radiation (sunlight) and pollution can damage our skin. These stressors generate little troublemakers, called Free Radicals, which are unstable molecules that damage our perfectly healthy cells, contributing to premature ageing, hyperpigmentation, and dullness. So then, how do we stop this? – enter Vitamin C – a powerful antioxidant that fights off these free radicals and stops them from damaging the skin.

Brightens The Skin’s Complexion

Melanin, the pigment responsible for giving our skin its color, can sometimes work overtime and create too much pigment, resulting in hyperpigmentation on the skin. Believe it or not, Vitamin C works directly with the cells that produce melanin and aim to put a stop to this process. By reducing melanin production, the skins complexion is improved, revealing a more radiant, healthier looking skin.

Stimulates Collagen Production

Collagen is what keeps our skin looking young. But as we get older, our bodies make less of it, resulting in skin that looks saggy or wrinkled. Luckily, with regular use, vitamin c actually tells the skin to make more collagen, helping maintain the skins elasticity and firmness.

Protects Against UV Damage

While sunscreen will always be the main defense against sunlight, vitamin C acts as a supportive buddy. When used in conjunction with a sunscreen, Vitamin C enhances the protection against UVB Rays, which causing burning to the skin. So, incorporating Vitamin C into your morning routine will maximize the protection against the sun, keeping the skin healthy and strong.

Reduces Inflammation & Redness.

Regular use of Vitamin C can help calm redness, reduce inflammation, and promote healing. Whether you’re like myself and battle with post-acne flare ups, or you have sensitivity from the sun, Vitamin C will work with your skin to promote healing and repair.


  1. Serums: apply a few drops in the morning, onto clean, dry skin. Don’t forget to use SPF after.
  2. Moisturizers: look for moisturizers with a Vitamin C infusion, or ones with an “added brightening boost”. This can be used morning and night.
  3. Masks: treat yourself weekly to a Vitamin C mask, whereby you leave it on for 10-15 minutes before washing it off.

In conclusion, not only does Vitamin C taste great, but it has a powerful effect on our skin. It fights off free radicals, improves the youthfulness of the skin and keeps our skin looking even, healthy and glowing!

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The Skin Barrier: Why It’s Essential For Healthy Skin

What, do you think, is the largest organ in the body? The heart, the lungs…

Wrong. The skin is the largest organ in the body! Just as we prioritize caring for vital internal organs, we should also give the utmost care and respect to our biggest organ – the skin.

What is the skin barrier?

Well, to start with, the skin is made up of three main layers: the epidermis, the dermis, and the hypodermis. The epidermis, the outermost layer of the skin, houses the skin barrier. This barrier acts as the first line of defense against external stimuli such as pollution, UV rays, and harsh weather. It also works to prevent unnecessary water loss from the skin. External stimuli can include harsh chemicals, strong ingredients, infections, and bacteria. The skin barrier functions like a knight in shining armor, ready to defend and protect the underlying layers of the skin

How do you know if your skin barrier is damaged?

Physically, a damaged skin barrier can present itself as flaking, redness, stinging, sensitivity, or acne breakouts. The causes of damage can vary. For instance, I have acne-prone skin, and it wasn’t until three years ago that I learned the importance of the skin barrier. Previously, I would aggressively treat my acne flare-ups with topical acids and retinols, which would excessively dry out my skin, leaving my skin barrier impaired and ruined for the following week.

Now that I understand the importance of the skin barrier, I have adopted a different approach to skincare. Instead of immediately resorting to acids and exfoliators, I now treat my acne with mild cleansers, hydrating and repairing moisturizers, and protect my skin from additional external irritants by applying SPF regularly. While my acne may not heal as quickly, I have noticed significant improvements in scarring, redness, and stinging…which in effect, makes the whole healing process shorter.

How do you keep your skin barrier healthy?

* Maintain moisture levels in the skin: Drink enough water and always apply a hydrating moisturizer.

* Don’t overuse active ingredients: Listen to your skin and only use what is necessary. Follow instructions regarding usage frequency and amount.

* Use barrier repairing ingredients: Incorporate ingredients such as Vitamin B3 (Niacinamide), Vitamin B5 (Panthenol), ceramides, Hyaluronic Acid, and squalene into your skincare routine.

* Choose mild cleansers: Alternate between foaming/exfoliating cleansers with gentler, milky/creamy cleansers.

* Apply SPF: Always apply sunscreen before leaving the house, regardless of the weather.

The takeaway from this blog is that without the skin barrier, our skin would be extremely vulnerable and susceptible to many serious concerns and disorders. Understanding its importance and adopting a routine that maximizes its duties, will ensure a healthy functioning skin barrier.

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Demystifying the Skin Cell Cycle: Understanding the Journey of Renewal

In the realm of skincare, the term “cell turnover” is frequently thrown around, but what exactly does it entail? At the core of healthy, radiant skin lies the fascinating process known as the skin cell cycle. This intricate journey of renewal is orchestrated by our body’s own biological mechanisms, continuously replenishing and rejuvenating the outermost layer of our skin. Join us as we delve into the depths of the skin cell cycle, demystifying its phases and uncovering the secrets to maintaining a vibrant complexion.

The Basics of Skin Cell Renewal:

Before we embark on our exploration of the skin cell cycle, let’s first grasp the fundamentals. Our skin is comprised of several layers, with the outermost layer, known as the epidermis, serving as our body’s frontline defense against external aggressors. Within the epidermis reside various types of cells, each playing a unique role in the skin’s function and renewal.

Phase 1: Birth and Differentiation (Basal Layer):

The journey of a skin cell begins in the basal layer of the epidermis, where stem cells reside. These remarkable cells possess the remarkable ability to divide and differentiate, giving rise to the diverse array of cells that populate the epidermis. As new cells are born, they undergo a process of specialization, transforming into keratinocytes, melanocytes, and other specialized cells essential for skin health.

Phase 2: Migration (Spinous Layer):

Once born, newly formed keratinocytes embark on a journey towards the skin’s surface. This migration occurs as cells move upwards through the layers of the epidermis, facilitated by intricate cellular signaling mechanisms. Along the way, keratinocytes undergo structural changes, acquiring the necessary components to fulfill their role in maintaining skin integrity and barrier function.

Phase 3: Maturation and Transformation (Granular Layer):

As keratinocytes continue their ascent, they enter the granular layer of the epidermis, where they undergo further maturation. During this phase, cells accumulate keratin proteins and lipids, essential for strengthening the skin barrier and preventing moisture loss. Additionally, specialized structures called lamellar bodies form within keratinocytes, aiding in the secretion of lipid-rich substances that contribute to skin hydration and protection.

Phase 4: Exfoliation and Shedding (Stratum Corneum):

At the culmination of their journey, keratinocytes reach the outermost layer of the epidermis, known as the stratum corneum. Here, they undergo a remarkable transformation, flattening and losing their nuclei to form a cohesive barrier of dead skin cells. Over time, these cells are shed from the skin’s surface in a process known as desquamation, making way for newly generated cells to take their place.

Maintaining Skin Cell Vitality:

While the skin cell cycle is a natural and continuous process, several factors can influence its efficiency and efficacy. Environmental stressors, hormonal fluctuations, and aging can all impact the rate of cell turnover, leading to concerns such as dullness, uneven texture, and signs of aging. Fortunately, a variety of skincare ingredients and practices can help support and optimize the skin cell cycle, promoting a healthy and vibrant complexion.


In the intricate tapestry of skincare, the skin cell cycle stands as a cornerstone of cellular renewal and rejuvenation. By understanding the phases of this remarkable journey, we gain insight into the mechanisms that underpin skin health and vitality.

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In the quest for radiant, healthy skin, we often turn to skincare products and routines. However, sometimes the biggest red flags in skincare aren’t found on product labels but in our daily habits. From neglecting basic hygiene practices to overlooking essential steps in our skincare routines, here are some common red flags that could be sabotaging our skin health.

Red flag #1 Forgetting to wash off makeup before bed

One of the cardinal sins of skincare is hitting the hay without properly cleansing your face. Leaving makeup on overnight can clog pores, leading to breakouts and dull skin. Makeup traps dirt and bacteria, preventing your skin from breathing and regenerating while you sleep. Make it a habit to cleanse your face thoroughly before bedtime to keep your skin clear and fresh.

Red flag #2 Forgetting to apply Sun Protection Factor (SPF) regularly

The importance of sunscreen cannot be overstated. Sun exposure is one of the leading causes of premature aging, hyperpigmentation, and skin cancer. Yet, many of us forget to apply SPF regularly, especially on cloudy days or during the winter months. Incorporating sunscreen into your daily skincare routine is crucial for protecting your skin from harmful UV rays and maintaining its youthful appearance.

Red flag #3 Using soap and water to wash the face

Using soap and water for facial cleansing may seem convenient, but it can severely harm the skin, stripping away natural oils and disrupting its pH balance. Did you know, some soap bars have a similar pH to household bleach, ranging from 10 to 13, contributing to issues like sensitivity, dryness, and premature aging. Facial skin is delicate and requires gentle care. Opt for sulfate-free cleansers designed for facial use, ensuring effective removal of dirt and impurities without causing irritation or dryness. Prioritizing products formulated for the face helps maintain skin health and avoids the potential damage associated with using harsh soap bars.

Red flag #4 Not changing face towels regularly

You know that trend going around of people wearing underwear labeled with each day of the week? Well I wish they’d do that with face towels too! Believe it or not, you should be using a NEW face towel each day. Face towels can harbor a massive amount of bacteria and germs, especially when thrown to the side of the bath, letting it sit in its damp, dirty mass. Remember – the best breeding ground for bacteria are dark, damp objects or spaces! Using the same face towel day after day can transfer dirt and oil back onto the skin, leading to breakouts and infections.

Red flag #5 Picking/squeezing pimples

It can be tempting to squeeze or pick at pimples, but this habit can do more harm than good. Picking at the skin can cause inflammation, scarring, and even spread bacteria, worsening breakouts. Instead of picking, treat pimples with targeted spot treatments containing ingredients like salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide to help reduce inflammation and promote healing.

Red flag #6 Forgetting your neck care

Lets rewind in time -You’re applying makeup before a party, unaware that your foundation’s shade is 2 times too dark, leaving your neck a completely different shade to your face. Well, that same contrast happens when you only apply your skincare to your face, and don’t extend it down to your neck. The skin on our neck is just as susceptible to aging and environmental damage as the skin on our face. Forgetting to extend creams and serums down to the neck can result in a noticeable contrast in skin tone and texture between the face and neck.


In the world of skincare, it’s not just about the products you use but also about the habits you adopt. Avoiding red flags and adopting healthy skincare routines can result in clearer, smoother, and radiant skin. Remember, consistency is key, so prioritize self-care and commit to nurturing your skin for long-term health and beauty.

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The “What”, “When” and “How” of Retinoids.

Ahh, the ingredient that stole my heart, and can confidently say is the Holy Grail of all skincare ingredients. There seems to be much discussion of retinoids over the last few years, but is that enough for you to fully understand it? Don’t worry, that’s why I’m here!


“What is Retinol?”

Retinol is derived from Vitamin A – an essential vitamin that plays a role in immune function, cellular growth, and more. This ingredient is a powerhouse and my personal favorite because it doesn’t just target one skincare concern, it targets an array of them. From wrinkles to pigmentation to acne, it addresses various issues. It also has a direct impact on the formation of collagen, resulting in healthy, firm, and youthful-looking skin.

When you hear people talking about retinol, you’ve probably also heard about Retin-A, Adapalene, Tretinoin, etc., but in reality, they are all a subcategory of Retinoids. Retinoids is the collective name, and the latter are all types of Retinoids. Great! Now that you know how to classify them, let’s take a closer look at each and their differences, in order of lowest concentration to highest.

  1. Retinol Palmitate: think ‘calm‘ and ‘palm.‘ This over-the-counter (OTC) retinoid is the least potent/calmest. This would be great for someone who has sensitive skin or doesn’t have many lines/wrinkles but wants to prevent aging in the future.
  2. Retinol: this is your standard type of Retinol, commonly found in skincare products, in concentrations of 0.1% to 1%. All skin types can use Retinol and it is still safe enough to use on sensitive skin types, but at the lowest concentration.
  3. Retinaldehyde: this is an OTC retinoid that is slightly stronger than Retinol. It is still safe enough to use on all skin types.
  4. Adapalene: this can be bought OTC or via prescription. Adapalene is stronger than retinol, but again, well tolerated by most skin types. This is commonly prescribed for the treatment of acne.
  5. Tretinoin: this is available via prescription only. This is suitable for someone who has tried Retinol but wants to move up to something stronger. It’s advisable to begin Tretinoin at a low dose initially.
  6. Tazarotene: this is the most powerful, prescription-strength retinoid. his retinoid delivers faster results, but it also carries a higher risk of irritation compared to other retinoids.


“When can I start using retinoids?”

If used in the right concentration and alongside the right concerns, retinoids are a great addition to skincare routines for individuals in their 20s all the way to their 60s. However, since it has numerous strengths, it’s advisable to consult a professional before using it. That can be anyone from a skincare therapist, a pharmacist, or your doctor.


“How can I start using retinoids in my skincare routine?”

Now that you know there are many different types of retinoids on the market, when to apply them in your routine will depend on the strength and type of Retinoid that you are using. As a general rule, you’ll want to use it after cleansing and before moisturizing. After moisturizing, SPF is absolutely crucial. The Retinol that I swear by and use in my own routine is by The Purest Solutions and is in a 1% formulation. in a new tab)


Retinol is easily the most important ingredient in my skincare routine. It has kept my acne at bay and largely reduced the pigmentation on my skin.
Don’t let the variety of options scare you away – remember, the more, the merrier! Reach out to a professional in the industry to assist you, or alternatively, engage in a chat with one of the trainers here at Beautique Academy. We’d be delighted to discuss it with you!

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Is expensive skincare better? We ask a skincare specialist.

Have you ever picked up a skincare item, looked at the price tag, and instantly become overwhelmed and red to the face, thinking to yourself really? THAT price for THIS? –don’t worry, you aren’t alone. In a world of influencers and deceptive advertising, it can be overwhelming to know if what you’re seeing is really the truth. To know exactly the difference between expensive and affordable skincare, it takes a professional to know, and that is me.  As a qualified skincare specialist, I am going to help you understand the efficacy of these two price tags, and the role that they play in reaching our skincare goals separately.

Marketing and appearance

Ever heard the phrase “you pay for the name”? –sadly, this holds true in the skincare world. Ingredients aside, the reputation of a brand often increases the price of its products. Packaging plays a significant role, too. The material a brand chooses to package their product in is completely their preference, but understandably, the higher the quality and the rarity of the material they choose, will all affect the retail price.

Fashionable/exclusive products

Ever noticed labels that say “new and improved formulation or “new age technology”, but with a higher price tag than before? Often in skincare, brands replace existing products with new ones that have upgraded ingredients. Why then, would the price increase? This boils down to the ingredient/s that they changed – the harder the ingredient is to source, or the rarer it is, the higher the overall retail price will be.  But remember– just because a brand has sourced an “exclusive” or “rare” ingredient, does not mean it is better.

Concentration VS potency

Concentration refers to the amount of active ingredients in a product, while potency refers to the percentage of those ingredients. When reading the ingredients label on a product, it’s important to know that they are listed in order of potency from high to low. For example, if Hyaluronic Acid is listed first, and water is listed last, this means that Hyaluronic Acid has a higher potency in the product than water does. Consider this analogy:

Imagine two anti-ageing products, both containing the same 10 active ingredients. Serum A is $80 and considered high-end, while serum B is $30 and more affordable. So does that mean stronger is better? No, not necessarily.

When it comes to skincare there is no ‘one size fits all’ One product that might agree with me, may cause havoc for you. Just because a brand is selling a vitamin C serum at 20%, does not mean it’s going to be more effective than the brand selling their vitamin C at 10%. The 20% vitamin C may be too strong for you and could potentially cause stinging, burning and even small pimples on the skin. Your skin would probably excel with the product that uses the same vitamin C, but at a reduced potency. 

The takeaway

Please don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying that expensive products don’t work – of course they do. And if your budget can allow for the high-end product, then by all means go for that one! All I’m saying is that there are a ton of great, inexpensive products on the market that offer the exact same active ingredients as the high-end ones, so don’t overlook them! At the end of the day, consistency is key in skincare. Whatever price you purchase a serum for, you have to be using it regularly in order to get to your desired result. And just because you are using a more expensive serum, does not necessarily mean you will get better or faster results!

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