Beauty Risks vs. Rewards

Airdate: 10/20/11

Have you been wanting to try lash extensions, a Shellac Manicure, or LED-based teeth whitening? How about Fraxel, IPL, or even an at-home laser treatment? The Paula's Choice Research Team shares their firsthand beauty experiences and what kind of results you can truly expect.

Paula Begoun: Hello, I'm Paula Begoun, the Cosmetics Cop, with my team Desiree Stordahl and Bryan Barron, keeping you beautifully informed here on BlogTalkRadio. And tonight - I mean this is a girl's night talk we are going to have. Well, okay, a guy's talk because we have Bryan here. So we are going to have a bit of a slumber party because we are going to talk about beauty risks vs. rewards.
00:00:34 What do you spend money on? And what is it just not worth spending money on? Once you peel away all of the nonsense that you read about in fashion magazines and things that are pushed at you and things that you hear a lot of talk about and mostly myths about, what are the real pros and cons of choosing what to do or what not to do about your face, your skin, your nails, you hair, just about everything.
00:01:08 We are going to go over all of that in just a minute. I wanted to cover a few things first. We have to rant tonight; I just can't hold this one back. I want to scream. But before I scream let me remind everybody that they can call in with their questions while we are live on Thursday evening here in Seattle at 6pm.
00:01:36 Different times, obviously, all over the world. The number to call in on is 347-426-3783. And if we take your question you will get some Paula's Choice products that meet your skincare needs. By the way, we posted a question on our Facebook page as to how people found Paula's Choice, why they bought Paula's Choice for the first time.
00:02:04 Thank you all who posted your comments and your thoughts and your reasons. It just lit up my little recovering body. And by the way, for those of you who listened last week, I am a week out from my surgery, actually exactly a week out from my surgery, my cosmetic surgery. I had a breast revision meaning I had old breast implants - very, very, very old breast implants taken out and new breast implants put in. And a breast reduction.
00:02:37 It was a complicated surgery because it wasn't just an augmentation or a reduction or just about anything else. But you also had to put new implants in and get a reduction and reshape the breasts. It was a process. I left the surgery telling Desiree I felt like I got hit by a Mack Truck.
00:03:07 In terms of risk vs. reward, it is high risk. I mean that was a very, very high risk procedure, no question about it. And the recovery for the first three days I was thinking there is no way that any reward from this could have been worth it. And now a week out I'm pretty sore, I'm definitely healing. And I have exactly the results I was hoping for.
00:03:40 I do see the end of the tunnel where the pain will be gone and there is light at the end of the tunnel and it is pretty thrilling. I'm excited. In another month when hopefully all the pain will be gone and the implants have settled in and the swelling is down. But right now it is just so close to exactly what I was hoping for. But it was very high risk versus reward.
00:04:12 I really weighed this one out for a few years actually - three years before I finally said I really need to do this. The one implant had already leaked and was still leaking. And they were just getting worse. But for risk versus reward...Yay!
Desiree Stordahl: You were so the epitome of the cosmetics cop when you got out of surgery. The first think Paula asked was how were her lashes.
00:04:43 Because as you guys know that have been listening for awhile, she has been getting lash extensions lately. And it cracked me up, because of course she was totally out of it, but she was still concerned about her eyelashes.
Paula Begoun: Well, you know because I was having general anesthesia, the anesthetic, the nurse who was applying the anesthesia, as she was sticking the IV, the sedation in my arm, I actually said to her, "Now be careful with my eyelashes because I don't know where you are going to put the oxygen." What do they do? And just as I'm thinking it, it was like the last thing I told her was be careful with my eyelashes!
00:05:25 I am, I'm a crazy woman. But speaking of - well, we will get to the lash extensions versus Latisse, first some false eyelashes in a minute. But I haven't done this in a long time but my friend Claudia who is a wonderful critic of my website, she finds all of the mistakes we missed. And helps, just is a great fan and a dear, dear, wonderful woman in my life. Hi Claudia! See, I remembered to say, "Hi Claudia." She is listening in the morning in Israel where she lives in that part of the world.
00:06:04 And I will have a glass of wine because I'm finally off of the pain killers. I will have a glass of wine tonight with her. So, let's talk about - so, Bryan, I should have told you probably to not tell me about the Allure's new best list, because I probably don't have energy to be this worked up. But Allure's "Best in Beauty" issue, they have been doing this for years, and for years they have pissed us off. It's always obscene what they highly rate. And we picked out of the 22 skincare products that they rated as the best buys -
00:06:45 We in our reviews, and using published research, we actually would only have recommend two of them -
Bryan Barron: Did we lose her?
Desiree Stordahl: Did we lose Paula? I think we may have lost her. Until she gets back on can you cover that Bryan?
Paula Begoun: I'm back.
00:07:08 I'm sorry, I hit the mute button because I started getting really upset. I got carried away. I pressed the mute button. Okay, I will put that mute button over here.
Bryan Barron: So out of their facial care products, Paula you were saying that we would only recommend two out of the 22 that they recommend.
Paula Begoun: And they are bad, really bad - following their advice, which I'm sure there are far more millions of women following Allure's advice than ours, which just saddens my heart because these products that they are recommending are a setup for wasting money.
00:07:48 And even worse, hurting your skin. Now the two we would rate as an option, one is from Kiehl's, their ultra-facial cleanser. And one is from CeraVe, their hydrating cleanser. The irony there is that Kiehl's is one of the, of all products, Kiehl's is one of the lines that we almost consistently downgrade for making some of the worst products available anywhere from almost any cosmetic company, maybe other than Origins. It is just worst - okay, there are a lot of lines that get really bad reviews, but Kiehl's is really one of them.
00:08:28 And here's one of the products we actually would have rated good. And of course CeraVe's Hydrating Cleanser that you can get at the drugstore is well done. But every other one just sucked. Bryan, you picked out of the 22 five of the worst ones. You want to go through that list of why Allure's "Best" is really the best of the worst list?
Bryan Barron: Oh, absolutely. The list was streamlined by Daynah, one of our favorite Paula's Choice staffers, and Desiree. But yes, out of the - gosh - they recommended the best cleanser for oily skin, Neutrogena's Oil-Free Acne Wash Pink Grapefruit Facial Cleanser.
00:09:12 All of Neutrogena's Oil-Free Acne Washes are problematic for one reason or another, typically because they contain a drying cleansing agent known as sodium C 14-16 olefin sulfonate. It is definitely going to degrease your skin but it is also going to leave it feeling dry and tight. This particular cleanser also contains a high amount of fragrant grapefruit extract which can be a skin irritant and definitely not something that you want to be massaging near your eyes or your nostrils or your mouth.
Paula Begoun: And never mistake a drying feeling on the skin, a drying, stripped tight feeling on the skin as being healthy for skin.
00:10:00 When your skin is tight and stripped it is more prone to oil production and it is more prone to inflammation which all of that absolutely makes acne and oily skin worse. All of these kinds of cleansers that just rip skin just are always a problem. And it is not because sodium C14-16 olefin sulfonate sounds chemical and nasty.
00:10:29 There are lots of cleansing agents that don't have beautiful plant sounding names that are excellent to use in skincare products; it doesn't have to be this stripping bad one. So, okay, I'm sorry, next one, Bryan.
Bryan Barron: All good points. For their anti-aging treatment, and there are hundreds of anti-aging treatments that consumers can choose from and you can find some of the best ones that we have reviewed on Beautypedia. But for some odd reason they chose SkinCeuticals' Phloretin CF which is essentially a vitamin C serum.
00:11:03 It's expensive - it is $152 for a 1oz bottle. And one of the main ingredients is alcohol. When you see alcohol as a main ingredient in anything that you are going to leave on your skin, especially if it is anti-aging, do not buy that product. It is the opposite of what you want anti-aging to do because alcohol applied topically causes free radical damage.
00:11:30 It can dry out your skin. And what's worse is that the irritation it causes can damage healthy collagen production. So you are applying something like this product that has vitamin C and a couple of good antioxidants in there such as ferulic acid which is a great antioxidant to use during the day because of its positive effect on mitigating sun exposure; helps make any sun damage that you get less apparent or less of a problem for your skin when you are wearing a sunscreen.
Paula Begoun: Actually what's really surprising about this is SkinCeuticals actually has some decent - I mean it is a pricy line, but it actually has some decent products.
00:12:10 They chose like one of their worst ones and one of their most expensive ones. And Bryan, forgive me, I'm just going to run through the last three. They recommended - first of all, anybody recommending anything from StriVectin, the "is it better than Botox people," you just have to wonder about...that's got to be about paid advertising because that is just bad.
00:12:31 But StriVectin Instant Retexturizing Scrub is an expensive scrub that doesn't retexturize anything. It is just a scrub. But what makes this really sad is it contains peppermint and citrus oils that are irritating, inflaming. That makes skin unhealthy, not healthy, damages collagen. Philosophy has a mask that they are recommending Keep the Peace Instant Relief Mask. It is just a strange mix of clay and absorbent ingredients and moisturizing ingredients.
00:13:05 But it also contains lavender oil which is a skin irritant. It is a problem for all skin types. It is not worth the trouble, it isn't the best of anything. And then really sad is the acne treatment they are recommending from Clean & Clear Advantage Acne Spot Treatment. Allure, I know, for somebody who has struggled with acne all my life, I know the number of people who are going to see that product that contains 2% salicylic acid.
00:13:35 But the base formula is 14% alcohol and that is just -
Desiree Stordahl: Oh, did we lose her again?
Bryan Barron: Boy, we have to stop getting her worked up like this. She ends up silencing herself.
Desiree Stordahl: So, she was ending there on the acne treatment from Clean & Clear.
Bryan Barron: Yes, their Advantage Acne Spot Treatment. It does have an effective amount of salicylic acid. It is actually formulated in a correct pH. But you can find other products, other BHA salicylic acid products that give you that without the alcohol.
00:14:18 Paula's Choice has some. Neutrogena has an option or two. And then there are a couple more that you can find out about on Beautypedia under the best BHA products.
Paula Begoun: Okay, so obviously you finished my rant for me as I got cut off. And I swear, I didn't do anything guys. I didn't do anything. All right, let's talk about beauty risks and rewards. And that "best" list...Allure, please. Oy!
00:14:48 So, I don't even know quite what to start with here. But let's talk...we started mentioning before the lash extensions versus Latisse. That is the ophthalmic drug that they found, that was used for Glaucoma that they found grew lashes and now you can get it from...actually you can get it dentist's office was selling it when I was there last time - to use Latisse to grow lashes instead of just for Glaucoma versus false eyelashes.
00:15:22 And I've got to tell you as somebody who has used all three and am now fairly addicted to lash extensions, given price, let's say price isn't an option, I actually have been using a Latisse-like product for some time. And now that I am wearing less makeup I think that the risk of the redness and Latisse, one of the major side effects is the redness it causes. I think I am pretty over using it. Because especially when I look in a magnifying mirror, I do see the red veins.
00:16:04 It not only causes irritation but it actually distends the veins, the little capillaries that run along the lash line and it can cause bluing because it can also extend deeper veins where the blood isn't oxygenated so you get a bluer look. And if I was wearing makeup that would be one thing, but I don't know - I'm just hooked on my lash extensions for the money and the effect.
00:16:33 And some of it is also you need somebody who really knows what they are doing. The woman I see is incredibly...I mean Kimberly out in Bellevue, Washington is just a phenomenally diligent - I can't believe the detail she goes through to get it on. And then, Desiree, you were a false eyelash girl for many a moon. And I always felt that false actually put them on pretty well.
00:17:04 But a lot of people put them on and they look absolutely false. It's kind of like, from my perspective, it's like stuffing your bra when you are a kid and the Kleenex coming out under your clothing. It just doesn't look real.
Desiree Stordahl: And I also would only do it for special occasions. I don't think false eyelashes are really all that great for an everyday look for anyone.
00:17:31 But I also used Rapid Lash which is a Latisse-like product that is less expensive than Latisse. And I didn't have the issues you did with the redness along the lid. But I do know of some other people even within our own office who did. So, for some people it can have that side effect and others it doesn't. But, as you can testify because you saw my lashes when I was using the Rapid Lash, it grew them like no other.
00:18:00 It looked like I was wearing false lashes. And I have actually just restarted the process to use Rapid Lash again because I loved it, and I am jealous of your lash extensions so I want my lashes long again.
Bryan Barron: You don't want the upkeep.
Desiree Stordahl: No. I don't want the upkeep with the lash extensions.
Paula Begoun: I'm trying to rationalize the upkeep on the lash extensions. But I figure I am wearing so much less makeup than usual now that the time I am saving not putting on makeup I am rationalizing given it to the lash extensions. But, yeah, it's time. It's pricy. It is time consuming.
00:18:35 It is a phenomenal look when you have somebody who knows what they are doing. But I have to say Desiree, your results were like what they show in the commercial. So, I think that Latisse is absolutely worth a starting point, or this Rapid Lash. Rapid Lash is half of the price, because Latisse has come down in price. Dentists and doctors all over the place are offering Latisse at all of these deals.
00:19:02 And once you learn how to use it, they actually last a really long time, the little bottle you get. But, in terms of trying something, the Latisse ends up giving you incredible bang for your buck if you don't have problems with it. And it is worth testing it out. If it doesn't work and you don't want to put up with the redness...I didn't get great results like you got. It just made it so when I did put on mascara my lashes looked that much longer.
00:19:33 But, boy, lash extensions...damn. So, let's talk about laser hair removal. So, laser hair removal is something I am going to give a big thumbs up to, a big "it's worth the risk versus reward." Depending where you get it done, and I so don't recommend you get it done just anywhere. Just because a spa puts up a sign that says they do laser hair removal and they can, and there is no doctor anywhere to be seen in sight, you can get problems.
00:20:01 Not everybody's skin is the color for laser hair removal, or they set the settings wrong. But when you are at the right place, when the people who are doing it know what they are doing, especially if you are a woman in her 20s and 30s and you are going to be shaving for the next 30 years, or 40 years of your life, there is no comparing any other kind of hair removal to laser hair removal because laser hair removal, you have to do it several times in the beginning and then maybe once a year or twice a year you have to do a touch-up and then eventually you just don't have to do anything.
00:20:40 And different doctor's offices have specials that they offer and six sessions, eight sessions for the price of six or whatever. And in comparison to waxing and shaving and all of that other stuff, if your skin is the right color and your hair color is the right color - whoa, I mean darn, laser hair removal is impressive. And when you think about it over time, with razor blades or waxing or whatever else you are doing to get rid of hair, nothing is quite as effective as just not having any hair to have to remove.
00:21:22 So I am going to give a big thumbs up to laser hair removal with the caveat that you just have to be very careful where you get it done. Do be consistent for the first year or two. And then taper off. And, boy, to get rid of that mustache hair or heavy arm hair or the bikini line, unbelievable. Well, I mean it hurts like nothing else.
00:21:50 Actually, it doesn't hurt that bad. And, Bryan, the TRIA, have you still been playing around with the TRIA, the home laser device you can buy, hair removal device you can buy?
Bryan Barron: Yes. Not on myself, but on Ben, on my husband.
Paula Begoun: How is he doing?
Bryan Barron: He's doing well. You have to do multiple treatments with TRIA for hair removal because of the fact that our hair is growing and in different cycles, so we are hitting different areas and we are definitely seeing an improvement. He's happy with it. He wants to keep using it. He doesn't like going through the process because it hurts.
Paula Begoun: Well, and some of it also I think for guys because of testosterone and everything, I think the results are a little, you are going to get results but you are going to get grow back.
00:22:48 The hair growth is more tenacious. So I think you might get better results...I don't know any research on this, but I think laser hair removal for women, I suspect, would be more successful than for guys, but you would get results. There is no question that you would get results. So, Desiree, you and Daynah got Shellac Manicures. Do you want to describe what that is and whether or not you think it is worth it versus fake nails?
Desiree Stordahl: Yeah. It's a gel-like polish and they put it on. You get it done at the salon.
00:23:25 And then you put your nails under a light and you go through a series of coats in doing this. So, mine took about 45 minutes and they average anywhere from $30 to $40 and so on, depending on where you go. The benefit of a Shellac Manicure is that they really do last longer than a regular manicure. They are very sturdy. I didn't get any chipping with mine up until the very end. And mine lasted the full two weeks that they promised and then some. And I also put my nails through the full test. I did all kinds of vigorous activities. I washed dishes. I did all of my regular housework that would get your nails scuffed up.
00:24:09 Nothing chipped it. So it was very nice and it was a very shiny --
Paula Begoun: Wait, didn't you do that kind of Iron Man exercise thing you did, like jumping over fire pits and stuff?
Desiree Stordahl: It was called Warrior Dash, so I literally crawled through barbed wire, climbed up ropes and all kinds of sorts of things where my nails totally could have gotten scuffed up.
00:24:32 And I was being very rough with my hands.
Paula Begoun: You are kidding. You are kidding.
Desiree Stordahl: And the nails lasted all the way through, perfectly. Perfectly. So that is the benefit of a Shellac Manicure. It really will last longer than a regular manicure. But the bad part about it is it is so difficult to remove. Don't even try doing it yourself. I tried. I soaked my nails in acetone till I felt they were going to fall off and this Shellac Manicure still would not come off.
00:25:03 So, you do want to go in to get it removed if you are going to do it. But, in the end, especially if you are somebody who already has weak nails, this is just going to wreak havoc on your nails. So I wouldn't recommend it long-term but --
Paula Begoun: So, did you do it again? Or did you decide --?
Desiree Stordahl: I did it just the once. I decided I didn't want to go through it again. It was so hard to remove and it took such a long time.
Paula Begoun: And then when you put the Shellac back on does it make the nails feel strong again or did the nail get so weak that it would just get weak time after time?
Desiree Stordahl: Well I only did it the one time. So I don't know the next time what it would have felt like. But Shellac has a thicker feel to it, so it would make your nail feel strong when you put it back on. But it is not good for your nails long-term I don't think.
00:26:01 And even - weren't you saying that the manicurists at the salon you go to don't even like to do it. And I think that is because it is so hard to remove.
Paula Begoun: They hate doing that to women's nails. And their feeling, strongly, is they have just started doing it recently. But their feeling is that putting nails through that every two to three weeks just doesn't make - they are not nuts about it. They don't like doing it at all.
Desiree Stordahl: That kind of speaks volumes about it right there.
Paula Begoun: That does speak volumes. But in terms of fake nails, I just have to put in my two cents.
00:26:40 I don't like fake nails, I never have. I think they are...and I have had them. I mean 30 years ago or something. They always look fake to me, especially the longer they are. They always look like something thick on the nails. No one ever thinks that is the real nail. I don't know how women do life who have the ones that are stretched out and looking somewhat like something out of a Halloween experience.
00:27:10 But I think for women and the little amount of time we have and budgets and just attractiveness - they look fake. They call them fake nails, they look like fake nails. Maybe for a special occasion but overall I don't think that gets you the bang for the buck. I think it just makes you look like you've got fake nails on. I'm very skeptical about the kind of material they are using and breathing that stuff in, especially for the manicurist or the salon you are in, that air.
00:27:44 So I am going to say I do not think there is any reward for the risk. The only other thing I want to say because then in terms of beauty risks versus rewards and then I want to start taking your questions is that if you are going to choose treatments outside of the realm of skincare and makeup and manicure and hair removal, and you are looking at things like facials and chemical peels and Microdermabrasion and then different kinds of lasers and IPLs and Fraxels, let me tell you if you are going to save up your money for anything, you want to save up your money for things like Intense Pulse Light treatments, Fraxels, Ultheras.
00:28:30 Chemical peels are okay but they are just okay. And Microdermabrasion is okay but it is just okay. Facials, depending on what you have done, if it is anything over and above extractions, they are really just okay. They can't compare to the results and improvement you can get with IPLs, Intense Pulse Light, and Fraxels and those kind of lasers for brown discolorations, for rebuilding collagen, for tightening skin, for getting rid of the red veins that can surface on the skin.
00:29:06 And it just doesn't make sense...what really doesn't make sense is doing any of this and getting a tan, but all we always talk about that. Desiree, let's take the first caller.
Desiree Stordahl: All right. We have Michelle from North Carolina on the line.
Paula Begoun: Hi, Michelle from North Carolina. How are you?
Michelle: Hi Paula. Huge fan.
Paula Begoun: Thank you. What's going on?
Michelle: I just want to have a painted on my car, because I want to tell everybody about it. I'm like a like a little mini cosmetic cop myself.
Paula Begoun: We love...the more cosmetics cops the better.
Michelle: Okay, so I took a risk and I have very dark skin. I wear like the darkest color in the Revlon ColorStay. And I took a dermatologist told me she had a laser for dark skin because I used to wax all the time because my sideburns go down pretty far.
00:30:02 And she burned me so badly. So I just still shave. I don't get waxes. And I'm just really worried. What can I do to get [rid of that scar?]
Paula Begoun: I'm sorry, so your dermatologist did your laser hair removal. Are you an African American? Are you Mediterranean skin color?
Michelle: No, I'm African American.
Paula Begoun: And did your dermatologist, did he or she have a black clientele or are you the exception to that practice?
Michelle: It was many years ago.
00:30:38 I probably was the only one. She was in Manhattan, uptown, and I never saw any other customers like myself. But her assistant was a black girl. Not as dark as me, but she was a black girl. And she said she had a laser for black skin. And I went for one session and my face looked like an open grilled cheese sandwich the next morning.
Paula Begoun: Oh my god. So, Michelle, how many years ago was this?
Michelle: 7 years ago. It was right when I decided I was going to get married, and I didn't want my husband to see me shaving.
Paula Begoun: Oh my god.
Michelle: I wanted to do that.
Paula Begoun: So what is the leftover from that? Where are you scarred?
Michelle: I have it right in my sideburns, like along my cheek and my ear. My skin is darker. So I have to wear makeup. And when I go to get makeup done they tend to try to put the darkest makeup on me.
00:31:34 But I'm not that dark, I'm just like a chocolate complexion. I do have oily acne skin and I just don't know what regimen I should be doing.
Paula Begoun: So, Michelle, your question is a complicated one and I don't feel competent enough to give you advice about what...I have thoughts about it, but here is what you really need to do is you really need to see a dermatologist who specializes in a black practice. That sounds like a weird thing to say.
00:32:12 What I mean is has an African American clientele. That is what you need. So, Michelle, what I am going to do for you, I'm going to make sure that Desiree gets your email information. I'm going to go through some of my contacts there and see who is in the Manhattan area. There are a couple of African American dermatologists, very reputable -
Michelle: Oh, but I'm not in New York anymore. I now live in Charlotte. So I might be able to find a really good dermatologist.
Paula Begoun: Oh, Charlotte, okay.
Michelle: It's not so very dark. I just have a little discoloration.
Paula Begoun: Right but that's the question.
00:32:53 You need to...and I know I can find somebody for you, or at least I can talk to my contacts to find somebody for you in the Charlotte area. Because the question is whether or not you should take a risk and try hydroquinone if it is brown discoloration. A lot of African American dermatologists recommend hydroquinone but they do it carefully and they test it and they watch their patients on it. We do sell a hydroquinone product and I would suggest you use it, but only after you talk to a dermatologist who knows these kind of discolorations that can happen for African American women. So let me do a little legwork for you.
00:33:40 Michelle, which Paula's Choice skincare products are you using?
Michelle: Oh, so many things. I have oily skin with the spots from acne. So I use some of the Skin Balancing products as well as I use the BHA lotion.
Paula Begoun: So let me send you our new Resist Hydrator which we are getting incredible feedback from in terms of improving skin tone. I'd be curious to see what you think about it for your skin color. And we will also fill you up a little bit on some of your Skin Balancing products.
00:34:15 You will hear back from us, Michelle. I will see what I can find in Charlotte for a dermatologist who would help you out.
Michelle: Thank you so much, Paula. Take care.
Paula Begoun: Okay, take care. Desiree, next caller.
Desiree Stordahl: Our next caller, actually we have an email from Francine. She says, I'm going to France in a month and I'm really excited to peruse the French Sephora stores since they have access to a wider range of UVA fighting ingredients in Europe. However, there is not a European Cosmetics Cop. So I don't know what to look for.
00:34:45 I'm curious about Paula's picks for European sunscreens.
Paula Begoun: Well, first of all there is a European Cosmetics Cop, because it is me! Beautypedia is available all over the world, Paula's Choice is available all over the world. Paula's Choice Europe. Paula's Choice UK. So I'm all over the place - you can't get away from me. And while it is true that the Europeans and the Canadians for that matter, you don't have to travel to Europe, have access to more UVA protecting ingredients than we do in the United States. It is actually, the European regulation actually makes it trickier to buy sunscreens in Europe than it does in the United States.
00:35:38 So while they have ingredients like Tinosorb. Bryan, do you have the technical name, how Tinosorb would appear on a European label? It's some bizarre long name.
Bryan Barron: I would have to look it up real quick. I don't have it on my screen right now.
Paula Begoun: Would you look those names up and also the one, the technical name for Mexoryl? So what it is that they have access to two or three more UVA protecting ingredients than the United States does. And they also allow an can mix UVA protecting ingredients with other synthetic and regular sunscreen ingredients in any measure you want.
00:36:30 So in the United States you wouldn't see Avobenzone and Titanium Dioxide with Ecamsule. You wouldn't see that. But you could see that if you were in Europe. But what you have in the United States is when you have a sunscreen you have to call out the actives. The actives have to be separate from the actual ingredient list.
00:37:00 So, if Titanium Dioxide and Zinc Oxide are the actives or Octinoxate and Avobenzone are the actives, it is going to be very clear on the label. But in Europe the active ingredients are thrown in with the regular ingredients into one huge ingredient deck where there is a huge list of technical names. And you could get easily lost trying to find the technical names.
00:37:30 So for example, Avobenzone which is a great UVA protecting ingredient, the technical name for it is Butyl Methoxydibenzoylmethane. Can you believe I remember that? And you have to remember that and look for it down the list along with other sunscreen ingredients because it would never just be Avobenzone. It would never just be Tinosorb. To be able to find what ingredient you are looking for for actives for your skin.
00:38:04 So in some ways you get more options but you also have to have much more technical information to be able to know what options to look for. Bryan, did you find those names?
Bryan Barron: The name for Tinosorb M, I couldn't find anything concrete on Tinosorb S. I'm not sure what site you were using earlier before we went live, but for Tinosorb M which is in my encyclopedia of ultraviolent filters, it is methylene bis-benzotriazolyl tetramethylbutylphenol.
Desiree Stordahl: Geez. Talk about a name!
Bryan Barron: So basically when you are in Europe and you are reading a sunscreen ingredient list, if you see an unpronounceable 19 syllable word, it is probably the sunscreen.
Paula Begoun: It's probably the sunscreen.
00:38:52 But you wouldn't necessarily know which one. Because they also have, like Mexoryl SX has a one type...there's different forms of it and it is just complicated. In other words it is complicated and there really isn't a benefit for shopping for European sunscreens over any other sunscreen. I would still encourage you to look for the main ones which are Titanium Dioxide/Zinc Oxide, which are my favorites, Avobenzone, Ecamsule. Well, actually, do they use that a name that shows up in the EU?
Bryan Barron: I don't think so. I think it would be terephthalylidene dicamphor sulfonic acid is what they would list. Again, who is going to remember that walking around? You would have to literally jot it down and then say, okay, this is Ecamsule, this is Tinosorb, this is Avobenzone.
Desiree Stordahl: Only you would remember, Bryan. Only you.
Paula Begoun: You just have to use Beautypedia. Or, Bryan, call Bryan. No, don't call Bryan.
00:40:02 You have to use Beautypedia so there is no big advantage, Francine, and I'm in Europe so look for me in Europe. Beautypedia is all over the world. Next caller. Next person asking a question. Francine was on email. So next caller, Desiree.
Desiree Stordahl: We have Tina from California.
Paula Begoun: Hi Tina.
Tina: Hello.
Paula Begoun: Hi, how are you?
Tina: I'm excited to talk to you. I talk about you to anybody who will listen on Facebook.
Paula Begoun: Thank you, Tina, that's wonderful.
00:40:31 What can I do for you?
Tina: Well last time I was at my hairdresser one of the aestheticians that also works there was talking about her perming eyelashes and actually she had just taken it out and was showing people her eyelashes and I was kind of wanting to know what you thought about that.
Paula Begoun: You know, I know women do this. And I know women do it who don't get blinded and I know women who dye their eyelashes and they don't get blinded. And I think the risk is just not worth it.
00:41:08 Talk about beauty risk versus reward. You know, what they will tell you, which just drives me mad, they will say to you, the person at the salon, "Oh, it's all natural." Well, you know, it might be a perm - well first of all, it can't be all natural. It is absolutely impossible to dye lashes naturally and have the colors stay. And I have never yet seen one that has anything even vaguely resembling a natural ingredient list.
00:41:45 And perming lashes take lye, take a very high pH formula to change the actual structure of the hair so that it holds the new shape of the hair. Getting those ingredients, while they are great on the top of your head very far away from your eyes when they are right next to your eyes, it just makes me incredibly nervous.
00:42:15 I just can't imagine. I would just give that a big thumbs down and suggest you not do it. But I do...I'm sure you see women getting it done at the salon you are at and they are not blind. But I just can't imagine. I can't imagine. What did they tell you about getting it done? Were they trying to sell you on it?
Tina: She would just go around and she had just done hers and they didn't even have like a price point yet. She had just done hers and was showing people. And she also was doing some kind wasn't Latisse, but it would be the other lash thing you were talking about.
00:42:57 It was a different brand, a serum, an eyelash serum that she was trying to sell too. And I had read up enough about that and that made me more worried than the perming did.
Paula Begoun: You don't which type? Which lash growing product she was pushing?
Tina: Oh, LiLash, that's what it was. The LiLash and the LiBrow. And I was talking to her about the LiLash.
Paula Begoun: Bryan, do you know that one, LiLash? I haven't heard that one.
Bryan Barron: I have heard of it before. I think it is another one of those that is using a prostaglandin analog ingredient which is the active ingredient, the name for the active ingredient that is in Latisse.
00:43:42 And there are some companies that are using those types of ingredients which are drugs and they are using them off label and they should not be. Yeah, LiLash ingredients, it does include prostaglandin analog which means that it stands a pretty good chance of working. But because it is sold as a cosmetic and not a drug it is not subject to the type of testing that drugs need to go to before they are for sale to the public or through prescription. It is riskier.
Paula Begoun: So is this LiLash using the same active ingredient that Rapid Lash is? Or just a similar analogue?
00:44:27 Probably just a similar one, huh?
Bryan Barron: Oh, it is's not the exact same one, no.
Paula Begoun: But it is in the ballpark?
Bryan Barron: Yep. Yeah.
Paula Begoun: So Tina, here is the long and the short of it, no pun intended. I think that the lash growth is by far the most bang for your buck and you just have to pay attention to any side effects.
00:45:00 And I do think that - and I didn't get any results using Latisse in my eyebrows. I have found by far using Rogaine or Minoxidil, the 5% strength that you can get in any drugstore for growing hair on your head, when I use it -
Tina: I'm sorry, I use the women's minoxidil.
Paula Begoun: The women's, the 2%?
Tina: Yes. On my head.
Paula Begoun: Have you tried...and how is that working for you?
Tina: I have used it for several years. And I'm never going to have the full lush head of hair, but I feel like I am doing less robbing Peter to pay Paul, because I was trying to cover up spots. But my main thing about my eyelashes is my eyelashes don't stay curled. I will use a curling wand and they don't stay curled at all.
00:45:54 So that is why I was kind of more interested in the perm, more than the growth.
Paula Begoun: It makes me nervous. I got to tell you, it makes me nervous. I wouldn't do it. But just one other thing about the women's 2%. The research about the 5% on Minoxidil actually shows it works better for women. I have been using the 5% Minoxidil on my hair line for...I mean I don't even know how long now. It must be years. It must be more than 10 years since I, or 8 years, something like that.
00:46:28 So, you might want to think about getting, talk about getting bang for your buck, upping that percentage and going to the men's 5%. The research is pretty good that it works really well for women.
Tina: And no risk for hair growth other places? Like I don't need more hair growth on my face.
Bryan Barron: That is a risk.
Paula Begoun: That is one of the risks. That is one of the risks. But it didn't happen for me. And the little bit of extra hairs that I get outside of my hairline I just do those away, but that is a pleasure that there is extra hair to remove.
00:47:03 I haven't gotten any hair...because I control where I put it. I don't just wipe it or let it run off. And I'm very careful that I am just rubbing it into the exact areas where I need the growth. But, yes, that is a risk. And it goes away. If you start noticing that you are getting growth in places you don't want to get it, then you would just stop, go back to the 2% and the growth won't be permanent.
00:47:33 It doesn't cause permanent hair growth. But you might want to consider that. I would stay away from the perm lashes. And what Paula's Choice products are you using Tina that I can send you some?
Tina: I use the Skin Balancing cleanser and toner. And I also have the 1% BHA. And I use your Super Antioxidant Serum.
Paula Begoun: How is that all working for you? You are doing good?
Tina: I'm doing great.
Paula Begoun: Let me send you...we launched our new Resist Hydrator just recently and I'm kind of gung-ho about it, so let me send that one out to you and you will let me know if you think it is as wonderful as I think it is.
00:48:15 It's working very well for our customers that have normal-to-oily combination skin and want to even out skin tone, reduce red marks. Just the comments on have just been wonderful. So we will send one of those out to you and Skin Balancing Serum to play with. And thank you for your call, dear.
Tina: Thank you so much.
Paula Begoun: Bye Tina.
Tina: Bye-bye.
Paula Begoun: Desiree, next caller.
Desiree Stordahl: We have Jen from California.
Paula Begoun: Hi Jen from California. How are you?
Jen: Hi, great, how are you Paula?
Paula Begoun: Good, what's going on?
Jen: I wanted to talk to you about vitamin A creams.
00:48:56 I have mild to moderate acne and I have had it for awhile. It has actually gotten worse as I have gotten older; I'm 30. And I feel like I have gone to the ringer on every single kind of vitamin A cream I could try and I have not found something that will work for me. I have tried Retin-A Micro and I tried Ziana, and now I am trying Epiduo and generic tretinoin, and I just feel like whatever I do it is making my skin worse, not better.
00:49:30 And I know people love them and I don't know why it is not working for me.
Paula Begoun: Well, so two things. First, what other skincare products are you using besides trying to use a retinoid?
Jen: I use your BHA 2%. And I use a good moisturizer I like called First Aid Beauty Repair Cream.
Paula Begoun: Is it a cream cream? Is it a real cream?
Jen: Yeah, it's a cream because my skin gets so dry from these vitamin A creams.
Paula Begoun: Okay, because you need to stop using a cream. That is a problem for your skin type. Go on, what else are you using?
Jen: I'm using a cleanser called NutriBiotic and when I was listening to you earlier I went and checked the label and it has grapefruit seed extract in it.
Paula Begoun: Okay, so we are not going to do that anymore.
Jen: So I'm ashamed of myself for not knowing that, but good call.
Paula Begoun: Okay, what else.
00:50:29 What else are you using? Is that pretty much it?
Jen: Let's see, I'm looking at my thing now. That's about it. I don't use a ton on my skin because I feel like I am just layering on things that aren't helping me.
Paula Begoun: All right, so here' two things. First of all, absolutely not everybody in the world could use a vitamin A cream, prescription or cosmetic for that matter. I can't. I can't use Retin-A. I can't use Renova. I can't use any of that...Differin. I can't use any of that stuff.
00:51:02 My skin gets inflamed almost immediately.
Jen: Yeah, so does mine.
Paula Begoun: Now having said that, some of it is...well, no it can't be. It's just not everybody can use it, Jen. And if you can, that's great. And if you can't, you just have to give it up. It's not the only answer. And it isn't the be all and end all. It gets way too much publicity as being the answer to everything. It's great - when you can use it you can get a lot of benefit.
00:51:34 But there's a lot of other things that you can do. I think that you are using my 2% know, I made it, so I know it is the best thing you can be doing for your skin type. You are not putting any other irritants on your face with it. It is soothing. It exfoliates, reduces redness. You have got to stop using that cream and the cleanser. I'm going to send you my Skin Balancing Cleanser. It doesn't contain anything irritating in it.
00:52:03 And it is gentle but thoroughly cleansing. You can put it over your eyes, it won't irritate your eyes. That's a real great way to know that you have got a gentle cleanser, that it doesn't rip your eyes up. Really. Creams on blemish-prone skin are always a problem. The ingredients that keep creams in their cream form, those thickening agents, even if it is a well-formulated product, those thickening agents can clog pores. They are fatty acids.
00:52:31 They actually are a very similar kind of ingredient to what the actual oil production in your skin is made of. So it is like you are adding more of the oil stuff that is causing you to have acne back onto your skin when you just tried to get it off with a cleanser that was too irritating. So here is what I need you to do to not drive your skin crazy.
00:52:57 I want you to try...well one is, I don't know what to tell you to do...well, my cleanser will show up in a day or two because we get products out pretty fast. So I want you to try my Skin Balancing Cleanser. Continue using the BHA 2% at night. I'm going to send you my regular strength benzoyl peroxide product. Have you tried benzoyl peroxide before?
Jen: Yes, I have tried it. It was also really irritating for me actually.
Paula Begoun: Is it mine or someone else's you used?
Jen: It was a drugstore version.
Paula Begoun: So we don't know if it had alcohol or camphor or peppermint as many of them do.
Jen: I don't, I don't know that.
Paula Begoun: I'm teasing. I'm sorry, I was being obnoxiously sarcastic.
00:53:47 Most benzoyl peroxide products, even when they contain the right amount of benzoyl peroxide are almost always formulated with alcohol, peppermint, just ingredients that inflame skin and you already sound like you have a little bit of irritation. I'm going to send you my regular strength benzoyl peroxide product. I only want you to use it every other day, only at night. And only over areas where you have blemishes.
00:54:12 Keep it away from the sides of your nose, any areas that are particularly sensitive. And then during the day I'm going to send you my Skin Balancing...I'm going to send you three things - my Skin Balancing Moisture Gel. And I also want you to try my Resist Hydrator. I'm curious to see how that will work for your skin. Although I think you will like the Skin Balancing Moisture Gel better. And also the Skin Balancing Toner.
00:54:43 Both my Skin Balancing Toner...all three of the products I just mentioned which are to give your skin some moisture without adding creamy ingredients to it also contain niacinamides. And niacinamide which is a B vitamin ingredient actually has good research about improving pore function and helping acne-prone skin. So I want you to play with those things. So you will have a gentler cleanser and you will stop using the cream that might be causing you breakouts.
00:55:13 And no more irritating ingredients on your skin. And thank you for your call, Jen.
Jen: Thank you so much.
Paula Begoun: Take care dear. Desiree, do we have time for one real quick question?
Desiree Stordahl: We have a couple of callers who want to know about permanent eye makeup. So what are your thoughts on that, Paula?
Paula Begoun: Isn't that interesting, perming lashes and permanent eye makeup. So, for eyebrows, I actually think that if you can get...I have seen eyebrow disasters, permanent eyebrows being put on and it literally looks like they take some strange shade of brown and just rip it across your eye and call that an eyebrow.
00:55:56 You might as well put...I don't know, you might as well put a Groucho Marx mustache up there instead. It just so doesn't look believable. But when I have seen it done right, in conjunction with using, not having that be the entire thing you do to your brow, but you also put a little brow powder with it, I actually think that permanent eye makeup, permanent eyebrow makeup where you create a brow when it is done right is absolutely worth a consideration when you don't have any brow hair.
00:56:30 The permanent eye liner just makes me nervous and I have also seen it done badly. So, having somebody that close to your eyes with something penetrating, a needle penetrating, and it often ends up looking like little dots across your eye and not like a nice line or too heavy and dark and then as you age it kind of follows your eye down and accentuates it looking - going down. And the same thing with permanent lip liner, the problem with permanent lip liner is that when it is done right -
00:57:10 So the two thumbs up, if you get the right person who knows what they're doing would be to get the brow done when you don't have any brow hair and then for the lip when your lip line is literally non-existent and you want to get a good shape, when it is done right in a natural looking lip tone, not trying to make it darker or not trying to make it purple or some bizarre shade of mauve lavender.
00:57:38 And they are not giving you a Clara Bow/Cupid's bow center lip area, when it is really done beautifully, I mean those can be very effective ways to get permanent makeup put on. But keep in mind that as you age that tattoo, because that is what that permanent makeup is, is just a tattoo, your face is going with it. So it is sagging along with you which can accentuate how old your face is looking. It can make you look older.
00:58:12 So, just keep in mind that it doesn't, while it is working it is great, and as you are aging, like any tattoo when you see somebody with a tattoo that got it when they were young and now they are older, and especially if they have had sun damage, it has kind of gone down with them. So be careful of that. I'm iffy on exactly whether or not to do permanent makeup but when it is done right for the mouth and the eyebrows it is definitely worth a consideration.
00:58:42 So, I'm Paula Begoun, the Cosmetics Cop. We've got to wrap up. We have been talking about beauty risks versus rewards. Hopefully that has helped all of us be beautifully informed on our BlogTalkRadio Show. For next week we are going to discuss the best tools to transform your look. What you need in your makeup bag, in your bathroom with you to look gorgeous all the time, that are worth the money.
00:59:09 And on the 3rd we are going to talk about anti-aging makeup tricks, what to do in your 30s, 40s, 50s and beyond. And then on the 10th, targeted solutions with our special guest Dr. Baxter, to talk about how to get rid of spider veins, cellulite, chest rejuvenation and much more, from the neck down looking younger. Dr. Baxter is a local cosmetic surgeon here in the Seattle area.
00:59:34 Thank you for being with us, being beautifully informed. It has been great. Until next week visit me at Take care.
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