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Skin Profiles

Skin Profiles

Sensitive + Reactive Skin Profile


Our thoughts here at Garden of Wisdom is that sensitive skin is a condition more than an actual ‘type’ of skincare. We believe that each of us is born with beautiful, forgiving and loving skin.  Without guidance or even being misguided we can, over time, cause serious damage to our skin barrier.  This becomes cyclical as the skin never really heals due to the fact that the ‘damaged’ skin barrier is not able to foster skin protection so all of the outside environmental garbage (pollution, cigarette smoke, toxins, and more) are able to permeate the skin barrier which, in turn, causes even more damage. With the skin in a weakened state, it is also susceptible to bacteria.

This doesn't mean your skin is set to be sensitive for life. With gentle exfoliation and elimination of as many contributing factors, it is possible to get your skin back to a normal, balanced condition.

Contributing Factors

  • Over Exfoliation
  • Environmental stressors: pollution, harsh wind, smoking, etc.
  • The worst enemy: too much SUN
  • SLS (sodium lauryl sulfate or any similar ingredients with SLS, SLES, etc. as their acronyms).
  • May need to avoid surfactants/soaps in general
  • Comedogenic ingredients [true ones that is]
  • Synthetic fragrances
  • Artificial colorants
  • Harsh preservatives, parabens, formaldehyde releasers
  • Alcohol-based toners [formulated with SD alcohol]
  • Chlorinated water
  • Use a shower filter if possible
  • Long, hot baths and/or showers

Possible Contributing Factors

  • Antibiotics
  • HRT (hormone replacement therapy)
  • NSAIDs (anti-inflammatory medication)
  • Any medication such as blood pressure, acne, chemotherapy, Tretinoin, and even topical medications like, Retinol, consistent use of acids, Accutane, and Retin-A.

Your Balanced Skin Profile


This skin profile can become a 'combination skin' during weather changes/other changes although can quickly bounce back with the right routine.

Characteristics

  • Skin generally is in balance but may swing slightly with the seasons
  • Skin is usually blemished free, but may occasionally have blackheads
  • Skin feels smooth and plump, healthy lipid [oil] and water balance although typically ’feeling’ balanced this skin type may produce the 'oilies’ in the t-zone area several hours after using a 'stripping' type of cleanser. Even with balanced skin, a harsh cleanser will cause the skin to create oil to compensate for the loss of natural lipids.
  • Pores are normal in size (not too large, not too small)
  • Healthy, balanced skin provides a barrier that has not been compromised and is able to protect the dermis from external toxins, pollution, etc. This is the ultimate goal.

Standards to Avoid

  • Chemically laden ingredients
  • Over Exfoliation
  • Long, hot baths and/or showers 
  • Environmental stressors: pollution, harsh wind, smoking
  • The worst enemy: too much SUN
  • SLS [sodium lauryl sulfate or any similar ingredients with SLS, SLES, etc. as their acronyms.
  • Comedogenic ingredients (true ones that is)
  • Synthetic fragrances
  • Artificial colorants
  • Harsh preservatives, parabens, formaldehyde releasers
  • Alcohol-based toners [made with SD alcohol]
  • Chlorinated water
  • Use a shower filter if possible

Positive Contributing Factors

  • Always be proactive in your choices and skin care diligence
  • Excellent diet
  • Avoiding white flour and white sugar, processed foods, alcohol, and smoking
  • When we are very fortunate, hereditary factors kick in
  • A lifetime of teaching from childhood to encourage healthy habits as well as techniques and workable strategies to keep sunlight to a minimum and using gentle skin care products.

Dry Skin Profile


Characteristics

  • Skin lacks natural oil content as well as the ability to hold moisture to the skin. 
  • The skin may appear flaky, rough, scaly or cracked (worse case scenario it can be bleeding.
  • Typically, pores are small although depending on the condition of the skin barrier, pores can be quite large (orange peel look) - this is due to the loss of collagen and elastin.
  • Prone to developing premature lines and wrinkles.
  • Winter conditions tend to cause redness, irritation, peeling and chapping
  • Skin can be very thin and delicate.
  • Superficial lines appear although disappear when moisturized (it takes sufficient natural oil production to create the glue needed for the cells to retain moisture).

Standards to Avoid

  • Chemically laden ingredients
  • Over Exfoliation especially with chemical exfoliators
  • Long, hot baths and/or showers 
  • Environmental stressors: pollution; harsh wind; smoking
  • The worst enemy: too much SUN
  • SLS [sodium lauryl sulfate or any similar ingredients with SLS, SLES, etc. as their acronyms.
  • May need to avoid surfactants/soaps in general
  • Comedogenic ingredients (true ones that is)
  • Synthetic fragrances
  • Artificial colorants
  • Harsh preservatives, parabens, formaldehyde releasers
  • Alcohol-based toners [made with SD alcohol]
  • Chlorinated water
  • Use a shower filter if possible

Positive Contributing Factors

  • Always be proactive in your choices and skin care diligence
  • Excellent diet
  • Unrefined, cold-pressed carrier oils like Flax Seed, Hemp Oil, and Evening Primrose Oil can help tremendously with topical lubrication.
  • Avoiding white flour and white sugar, processed foods, alcohol, and smoking.
  • A lifetime of teaching from childhood to encourage healthy habits as well as techniques and workable strategies to keep sunlight to a minimum and using gentle skin care products.

Thoughts

  • Topically increase the use of collagen, elastin, cholesterol, ceramides and fatty acids
  • Diabetes can cause serious skin conditions to arise
  • Diuretics, antihistamines, etc. can contribute to dry skin
  • Extremely dry skin can be indicative of thyroid imbalance
  • Using a humidifier in the winter can be very helpful to help keep skin moist
  • Use creamy or gel type cleansers that do not strip the skin

Blemish Prone Skin Profile


This is considered a skin condition but can be in combination with other skin types, such as oily, dehydrated or sensitive. Rosacea Skin can also be blemish prone and even aging skin can at times be blemish prone.

Males and females can develop skin blemishes from stress and hormonal changes. The hormone androgen stimulates the sebaceous gland to produce more sebum. Sebum is a natural oil that makes the skin soft and waterproof. This natural sebum also serves to help hold hydration in the skin. The oily sebum accumulates in the hair follicles as it moves up the hair shaft where it mixes with normal skin bacteria (Propionibacterium Acnes) and shedding dead follicular skin cells. The dead cells normally get pushed to the surface where they are expelled. The more sebum is produced the greater the chances of the follicles being clogged, potentially resulting in skin blemishes.

At Garden of Wisdom, we have also found that the use of moisturizers that contain waxes and certain types of emulsifiers can also lead to blemishes as the waxes and emulsifiers go into the skin pore, clogging it and leading to blemishes.

Characteristics

  • Skin which can overproduce oil, naturally
  • Clogged pores
  • Can have any type of blemish, but generally starts off in this order: open comedones (blackhead), closed comedones (whitehead), papule (raised bump type pimple - usually pink or flesh colored), a pustule (raised bump that has pus in it from inflammation), nodule (raised bump type lesion that is larger than a papule and usually painful), cyst (deep pustular type infection - caused by intense inflammation in the pore).
  • Inflammation of the pores w/whiteheads
  • Redness and irritation
  • When treating and there is no positive reaction, it could be hormonally related
  • Typically small pores on forehead, chin, jaw, and cheeks
  • Can have large pores on nose and inner cheeks
  • Scarring can result from blemishes (some are more prone to scarring than others]).
  • Picking at any type of blemish can also lead to scarring

Standards to Avoid

  • Chemically laden ingredients
  • Over Exfoliation
  • Long, hot baths and/or showers 
  • Environmental stressors: pollution, harsh wind, smoking
  • The worst enemy: too much SUN
  • SLS (sodium lauryl sulfate) or any similar ingredients with SLS, SLES, etc. as their acronyms.
  • Comedogenic ingredients (true ones that is)
  • Moisturizers - Most blemish prone customers (especially the small pore ones)
  • find that they can't use moisturizers of any kind and need to focus
  • on hydration and occasionally lipids in the form of carrier oils.
  • Moisturizers contain waxes and certain types of emulsifiers
  • which can clog the pore and lead to blemishes.
  • Synthetic fragrances
  • Artificial colorants
  • Harsh preservatives, parabens, formaldehyde releasers
  • Alcohol-based toners (made with SD alcohol)
  • Chlorinated water - Use a shower filter if possible

Positive Contributing Factors

  • Gentle yet effective skincare routine that consistently and gently keeps the pores unclogged
  • Excellent diet
  • Practice Stress Reduction Techniques if acne is stress related
  • Avoiding white flour and white sugar, processed foods, alcohol and smoking
  • A lifetime of teaching from childhood to encourage healthy habits as well as techniques and workable strategies to keep sunlight to a minimum and using gentle skin care products

Thoughts

  • Topically, include sulfur-based products, effective antibacterials, gentle acids, etc to bring bacteria into balance
  • Using a humidifier in the winter can be very helpful to help keep skin moist
  • Use as gentle a cleanser as possible to clean your skin.
  • Stronger cleaners can strip the skin causing the irritation or skin to pump out more oil leading to clogged pores.

Dehydrated Skin Profile (an early form of dry skin)


Dehydration aka ’surface dehydration’ is lacking in moisture within the skin.  This can be a lifelong problem or it can come about depending on the seasons.  The main cause is usually cleansing the skin with a cleanser that is too strong for the skin, or over the use of acids and exfoliation. Moisture is also quickly depleted from the skin through environmental elements such as wind and the sun.  Although drinking the recommended amount of water throughout the day helps significantly, the skin also has to be moisturized from the outside in.  Keep in mind the importance of surface exfoliation via fruit enzymes and fruit acids, microfiber cloths, or your tonic/toner with a cotton pad  [removal of dead, gummy skin cells] to allow the moisture from the top to penetrate the skin.  Dehydration of the skin is not hereditary but due to lack of moisture caused by stripping of the natural lipids of the skin.

Dry skin is the later version of the dehydrated skin. (see our profile on dry skin) Age also plays an important factor in this dilemma.  As our skin ages, we will see/feel a significant drop in the levels of fats/lipids/oils in our skin surface as well as a drop in the level of ceramides and hyaluronic acid we naturally produce. Ceramides and Hyaluronic acid are part of the structural matrix of our skin.

To add to the confusion, oily skin can also be dehydrated.  (combination skin) Most of us figure if our skin feels taught that slathering on creams will take care of the problem.  This is not necessarily the case.  In dry skin, oils/creams are needed while dehydrated skin will need moisture/hydration/humectants and oils to act as a barrier to combat the situation.  Young people can also be plagued with dry and/or dehydrated skin due to environmental conditions such as overexposure to the sun, wind, and toxins. The ironic and most important statement of all is...

It takes both water and oil to create a balanced skin surface. The lipids/oily help hold the water/hydration in the skin. What this means simply is that your skin can be lacking in lipid content (which is what our skin needs to hold on to hydration) which brings about one or more of the symptoms listed.

Symptoms include

  • Tightness, flakiness, scaly
  • If gently tugged the skin crinkles
  • Lack of radiance [dull look]
  • Feels rough, not smooth
  • Loss of elasticity
  • Premature aging
  • Superficial lines
  • Cracking
  • Inflammation
  • Itchy
  • Irritated

Causes & Contributing Factors

  • Over cleansing the skin; even with gentle cleansers and especially those that make the claim of being gentle but are loaded with chemicals and cheap fillers, your skin can have the actual barrier damaged without proper pH balancing of said cleanser or the opportunity to adjust the pH back to normal with acidic products such as our Clarifying Tonic (for example).
  • Overuse of acids (we suggest only 2-3 x per week max depending on your skin)
  • Environmental stressors (pollution, the sun, wind, no sunscreen, etc.)
  • Poor food/diet choices. A lack of EFA (essential fatty acids) in the diet can create havoc with the skin barrier.
  • Itching, dryness, thinning of the skin, flaking, etc.
  • Weather! Cold weather will bring about the heat inside of our homes. Heat (without humidity), acts like a huge sponge which will soak up the moisture from anything in its path, including our skin!
  • If you are able to tolerate it, a humidifier is almost always a great addition during the winter months. The Summer months can also bring dry skin to the forefront due to being out in the sun for an extended amount of time. 
  • Never go without sunscreen on your face and decollete area.

Standards to Avoid

  • Chemically laden ingredients
  • Over Exfoliation
  • Long, hot baths and/or showers 
  • Environmental stressors: pollution; harsh wind; smoking;
  • The worst enemy: too much SUN
  • SLS (sodium lauryl sulfate) or any similar ingredients with SLS, SLES, etc. as their acronyms.
  • May need to avoid surfactants/soaps (anything sudsy!) in general
  • Comedogenic ingredients (true ones that is)
  • Synthetic fragrances
  • Artificial colorants
  • Harsh preservatives, parabens, formaldehyde releasers
  • Alcohol-based toners (made with SD alcohol)
  • Chlorinated water - Use a shower filter if possible

Positive Contributing Factors

  • Hydrating moisturizers
  • Keeping your skin in the best shape possible allows the natural body temperature to help regulate the skin's surface temperature and keep it from dehydrating as quickly
  • Exercise produces sweat to help eliminate toxins
  • Learning to care for our skin at a young age.  By learning young we have a lifetime of knowledge to support the infrastructure of the skin
  • Consistency is key in treating your skin with respect and love

Oily Skin Profile


Oily skin is skin that has over active sebaceous glands which cause an overproduction of oil. This can be genetic or hormonal. In puberty for both boys and girls and shows up again just before a woman begins her menstruation. Overproduction of oil [sebum] is also commonly caused by using harsh detergents, soaps that are not superfatted and harsh chemicals. Any of the above will cause the skin to 'panic' and go into overproduction mode to protect the skin barrier. When there is too much oil produced this can/will mix with the dead skin cells causing them to stick to each other, allowing them to then adhere to the sides of the pores. This is what we call a 'clogged pore'. 

Characteristics

  • Medium to large pores in T-zone area, somewhat on the cheeks, too
  • Skin tends to get shiny/oily not long after cleansing
  • Maybe acne prone and clog prone
  • Not as prone to fine lines and wrinkles
  • In warmer weather and higher humidity, sebum production may increase
  • Stress tends to increase oil production
  • Hormonal fluctuations tend to increase oil production
  • In cooler, drier weather, the skin may suffer from dehydration

Positive Contributing Factors

Skin ages much slower (fine lines, wrinkles, etc.)

Standards to Avoid

  • Chemically laden ingredients
  • Over Exfoliation
  • Long, hot baths and/or showers 
  • Environmental stressors: pollution; harsh wind; smoking;
  • The worst enemy: too much SUN
  • SLS (sodium lauryl sulfate) or any similar ingredients with SLS, SLES, etc. as their acronym.
  • Strong/Stripping Cleansers
  • Comedogenic ingredients (true ones that is)
  • Synthetic fragrances
  • Artificial colorants
  • Harsh preservatives, parabens, formaldehyde releasers
  • Alcohol-based toners [made with SD alcohol]
  • Chlorinated water - Use a shower filter if possible

Rosacea Skin Profile


As Rosacea typically presents itself with a rosy red rash it is surmised that this involves inflammation of small blood vessels in the facial capillaries. These capillaries (often called distended capillaries or broken capillaries) extend into the capillary walls. This is due partially to poor elasticity in the capillary wall. There are also other theories as to the cause of rosacea, including yeast, mite or bacterial overgrowth, unhealthy bowels and overgrowth of bacteria in the bowels. We believe that harsh skin care, acids, and skin irritants play a role in wearing down the skin barrier, leading to Rosacea.

Rosacea represents itself in 4 sub-stages. (We have put the sub stage Couperose below on this list) Each stage becoming more intense than the last. We have kept the stages relating directly to the facial skin. Although rosacea in its worst stages can cause thickening of the skin and also affect the eyes. (Occular Rosacea) Using Gentle Skin Care including calming/healing ingredients is your best tool in helping Rosacea skin.

Symptoms

  • Red rash appearing on the nose and/or cheeks
  • Pustules (small, pus-filled bumps)
  • Papules (small, inflamed bumps)
  • Watery, irritated eyes
  • Small blood vessels appearing on the surface of the skin usually near the nose, cheeks or chin

Characteristics

  • Tends to be easily irritated
  • Skin tends to flush when exposed to irritating substances/products
  • May react due to temperature/humidity changes
  • May react during times of stress
  • May react to fluctuations in hormone levels
  • May also react to certain foods and substances, especially spicy foods, alcohol or nicotine
  • May react to sunlight
  • Can become dehydrated due to transepidermal water loss
  • In some rosacea skin, the constant flushing can affect the sebaceous
  •     glands causing acne pustules

Try to avoid, as these are definite contribution factors

  • Spicy foods (increases heat)
  • Smoking (restricts blood flow)
  • Direct sun exposure to the face
  • Chemically laden ingredients/skin care
  • Absolutely avoid surfactants and soaps 
  • Absolutely no exfoliating of any kind
  • SLS (sodium lauryl sulfate) or any similar ingredients with SLS, SLES, etc. as their acronyms.
  • Synthetic fragrances
  • Artificial colorants
  • Harsh preservatives, parabens, formaldehyde releasers 
  • Ingredients are known to cause irritation
  • Hot showers or hot water when washing the skin 
  • Chlorinated water - Use a shower filter if possible

Possible Contributing Factors

  • Alcohol (increases heat and also feeds bacteria in the gut)
  • Various medications
  • Try to avoid acidic foods and drinks
  • Not getting enough sleep

See Related Condition - Couperose Skin Profile (below)


Mature Skin Profile


This skin type generally has been damaged from too much sun when younger, damaging skincare products, poor health and/or smoking and alcohol consumption. Sometimes excess pharmaceutical medications also play a role. Environmental factors can also play a factor - Living in highly polluted areas, really dry areas or working indoors most of your life where fresh air does not circulate well in the building.

Symptoms

  • Skin texture has a loss of firmness, is thinner and may have wrinkles, fine lines
  • Skin is thinner
  • The skin has wrinkles or fine lines
  • The skin may be loose or sagging on face, jaw, near chin, cheeks or eyes
  • Fluctuations in skin moisture levels caused by hormonal imbalances

Characteristics

  • Skin tends to lack vibrancy and luster - lack of "Glow"
  • Looks less plump and smooth
  • Skin can have patchy areas of dryness 
  • Skin is generally dry and dehydrated but occasionally can be oily
  • May have dark spots or discoloration (age spots)
  • May have broken capillaries

Standards to Avoid

  • Chemically laden ingredients
  • Over Exfoliation
  • Long, hot baths and/or showers 
  • Environmental stressors: pollution; harsh wind; smoking;
  • The worst enemy: too much SUN
  • SLS (sodium lauryl sulfate) or any similar ingredients with SLS, SLES, etc. as their acronyms.
  • Likely needs to avoid soaps and surfactants (anything sudsy)
  • Comedogenic ingredients (true ones that is)
  • Synthetic fragrances
  • Artificial colorants
  • Harsh preservatives, parabens, formaldehyde releasers
  • Alcohol-based toners [made with SD alcohol]
  • Chlorinated water - Use a shower filter if possible

Positive Contributing Factors

  • Using a humidifier in the winter can be very helpful to help keep skin moist
  • Always be proactive in your choices and skin care diligence
  • Excellent diet
  • Unrefined, cold pressed borage, flax, evening primrose or black currant seed oil can help tremendously topical lubrication
  • Avoiding white flour and white sugar, processed foods, pharmaceutical medications(when possible), alcohol and smoking
  • A lifetime of teaching from childhood to encourage healthy habits as well as techniques and workable strategies to keep sunlight to a minimum and using gentle skin care products
  • Consistency is key in treating your skin with respect and love

Couperose Skin Profile


(This skin type can be associated with temporary or chronic reddening and/or flushing of the skin).

Symptoms

Broken capillaries or thread veins twisting around on the surface of the skin (Visible to the Naked Eye)
Intense red flushing
Persistent redness
Patches of redness especially on nose and cheeks

Characteristics

  • Tends to be easily irritated
  • Skin tends to flush when exposed to irritating substances/product
  • Although couperose can affect any skin type, dry and thin is the most common
  • Tends to affect Caucasian skin more than any other skin type (this is probably due to darker skin having the melanin to protect it)
  • May react due to temperature/humidity changes
  • Tends to react to sunlight
  • Tends to react to anything that increases blood supply to the skin
  • May react during times of stress
  • May react to fluctuations in hormone levels
  • Certain medical conditions such as high blood pressure can also contribute to couperose skin
  • May also react to certain foods and substances, especially spicy foods, alcohol, and/or nicotine
  • Can become dehydrated due to transepidermal water loss
  • This type of skin condition can also extend into eye area (Occular Rosacea)
  • Often confused with Typical Rosacea due to a similarity of conditions.
  • Often grouped with Rosacea as a subtype.
  • This is Rosacea amped up!

Try to avoid, as these are definite contribution factors

  • Spicy foods (increases heat)
  • Smoking (restricts blood flow)
  • Direct sun exposure to the face
  • Chemically laden ingredients/skin care
  • SLS (sodium lauryl sulfate) or any similar ingredients with SLS, SLES, etc. as their acronyms.
  • Spicy foods (increases heat)
  • Smoking (restricts blood flow)
  • Direct sun exposure to the face
  • Chemically laden ingredients/skin care
  • Absolutely should avoid surfactants and soaps
  • Absolutely should avoid exfoliating
  • Chemically laden ingredients/skin care
  • Synthetic fragrances
  • Artificial colorants
  • Harsh preservatives, parabens, formaldehyde releasers 
  • Ingredients are known to cause irritation
  • Hot showers or hot water when washing the skin (USE a shower filter if possible!)

Possible Contributing Factors

  • Alcohol (increases heat and also feeds bacteria in the gut)
  • Various medications
  • Try to avoid acidic foods and drinks
  • Not getting enough sleep 
  • Possible connection to sugar in the diet and rosacea (or foods that convert to glucose quickly)
  • See related condition - Rosacea (above)
  • Combination Skin Profile
  • Often seen as Dehydrated Skin 

Combination Skin Profile


This skin type is usually a combination of oily and dry areas of the skin. This skin type can shift towards being normal during summer and more dehydrated during winter time. The key to this skin type is to be really gentle with it, and not use drying cleansers, toners or other potentially irritating products. Some try to treat the areas separately, but this can lead the skin to feel further confusion. It is best to use gentle, balanced products. The skin will find its own balance if you follow this suggested protocol. Focusing on the most gentle cleanser possible to cleanse skin and getting lots of hydration is really important to this skin type.

Symptoms

  • Skin is usually a combination of oily areas and dehydrated areas
  • Pores in t-zone are generally larger than the other areas of the face
  • Excess Oil in T-zone

Characteristics

  • Dehydrated/Dry flakey areas on cheeks and around the eye area
  • Tightness in the cheek area

Possible Contributing Factors

  • Using a cleanser (or toner) or acid product that is stripping
  • Chlorinated water in your shower or sink water (water you wash your face with)
  • Use a shower filter
  • Weather (especially during winter time)
  • Not getting enough sleep

Standards to Avoid

  • Chemically laden ingredients
  • Over Exfoliation
  • Long, hot baths and/or showers 
  • Environmental stressors: pollution; harsh wind; smoking;
  • The worst enemy: too much sun
  • SLS (sodium lauryl sulfate) or any similar ingredients with SLS, SLES, etc. as their acronyms.
  • Needs to use the most gentle cleanser necessary to clean face / and or take off makeup.
  • Comedogenic ingredients (true ones that is)
  • Synthetic fragrances
  • Artificial colorants
  • Harsh preservatives, parabens, formaldehyde releasers
  • Alcohol-based toners (made with SD alcohol)
  • Chlorinated water - Use a shower filter if possible
  • Synthetic fragrances