Ever since my hair had been dyed, I have been paying much more attention to what products I will apply to them. Butters will impress even the most demanding user. In this post in Slovenian Cosmetics, I will introduce two new Butters products, namely Natural Hair Intensive Care Mask and Leave-in Hair Mask.

Why use a hair mask at all?

First, it is necessary to distinguish between conditioner and hair masks. Namely, almost all female users use the conditioners, but the use of the mask is not so common. Hair conditioners are almost essential for hair care as they restore the structure of the hair and affect its appearance. In particular, conditioners make combing easier, reduce hair electricity and repair hair structure.

However, if you want really soft and shiny hair, your friend will also be a hair mask. The use of hair masks is primarily recommended for people with dry, split and dyed hair. Unlike conditioners, hair masks are prepared with oils, butters and other nourishing ingredients. Masks are usually left on the hair longer than balms, giving better effects after one use.

Butters masks are formulated with specially nourishing ingredients

Both Intensive Care Mask and Leave-in Hair Mask contain shea butter, CBD extract, hydrolysed wheat proteins, Vitamin B5 (panthenol). The Leave-in mask also contains hydrolyzed keratin.

Shea Butter

Shea Butter is great for hair care as it revitalizes dry and light hair. Shea butter is it’s own source of moisture and vitamins. It can be used on both hair and scalp. It moisturizes dry, scaly scalp and damaged hair from root to tip, leading to faster hair growth.

CBD Extract

Both CBD and hemp oil are able to control excess sebum production and reduce inflammation. They also show antibacterial benefits to the scalp. CBD extract is rich in vitamins, which is great for the care of dry and brittle hair.

Hydrolyzed proteins

Why not just use ordinary proteins? Proteins are huge molecules that, because of their size, cannot penetrate the inside of hair, but can only remain on their surface. The process called hydrolysis transforms the protein molecules to become smaller. Smaller protein molecules can pass into the hair structure where they bind to cracks in the hair structure. Cracks in the hair structure usually result from chemical or thermal treatment of the hair. Hydrolyzed proteins bind to cracks to temporarily repair hair structure.

Vitamin B5 – panthenol

Panthenol is not only a moisturizer, it is also a great emollient. It is evenly distributed over the surface of the hair, where it forms a smooth film. This film makes the hair shinier while also allowing excellent gliding between the hair, making it easier to comb. Panthenol can also penetrate the inside of the hair, where it helps retain moisture and provides volume.

Is the mask suitable for all hair types?

Most of all, people who deal with oily scalp have a probles with hair masks. For people with drier hair, a mask is a great choice to add the missing lipids into the scalp and repair the hair structure. People with oily scalp have the problem of excreting large amounts of sebum on the scalp, which makes the hair look oily and hair washing is more frequent on a schedule. Rarely does anyone have the problem of having their hair greasy over its entire length.

Since I also have oily scalp I have good advice for you so you can still use a hair mask. It is easy, just try to avoid applying the mask to the scalp, distributing it only at the tips of the hair. When washing, avoid contact with the scalp and rinse your hair with lukewarm water. Why lukewarm water? Hot water stimulates the sebaceous glands and more sebum will be released into the scalp!

Butters Intensive Hair Mask

Texture

The mask comes in a 250 ml crucible in which you reach for the product by hand. So, the classic and also the most convenient mask container since it makes dosing easy. The mask is very rich and, as a result, very dense, but fluffy. It’s as fluffy as whipped eggs and butter (if you bake you know what I’m talking about!). You need very little product because of it’s richness.

Applying and mask miracles

It is easy to apply to the entire length of your hair. I only apply it to the tips, since my oily scalp would have complained sooner if I had hoped for more than the tips. I leave it between 3 to 5min to do its magic. I have had quite a few hair masks already, but the effect this mask has cannot be compared to any other. Even when you wash mask off your hair, they are silky soft and easy to comb.

Effect and smell

Why did I combine the two? Usually, hair products have a smell, but when you wash it out of your hair, it will get lost. However, this is not the case with this mask. The smell, according to my personal interpretation, is oatmeal with honey. It smells divine to me and the scent persists after washing.

The effect of this mask is immediate. As I mentioned above, masks are here for immediate effect. However, in addition to its immediate effect, long-term use is the one that will make your hair softer, healthier and shinier. After using the Butters mask, the hair is soft, easily combed, is shiny, and the tips look less split.

Butters Leave-in hair mask

This mask is intended to be applied after washing your hair as it does not need to be rinsed off. It can be applied immediately after washing as extra care or between two hair washes to improve the appearance and structure of your hair. The mask can be used to quickly refresh and enhance the shine of your hair.

The mask comes in 50 ml packs with a pump, which makes it easy to dispense, but at the same time, due to its size, it is also suitable for a bag. You know, just when you need a nice haircut, one hair goes on it’s own. Well, with this mask you will no longer have these problems, as it will smooth out your hair.

Does it grease your hair?

It simply spreads over the surface of the hair and makes it more radiant. However, it is very important that it does not weigh the hair and give them a greasy appearance. Because I have a very oily scalp myself, I was scared that this would grease my hair even more, but if you apply the product only to the tips it will not happen. My time between washes still remains the same. The smell is the same as the rinse mask.

The effect

The purpose of this product is to nourish and smooth the hair during the washes, when the hair is already tired from external factors.

The publication was created in collaboration with company Kinezika. Natural Hair Intensive Care Mask and Leave-in Hair Mask are available at Butters.si.

Don’t forget to check out my Instagram account for a discount code!

In Getting to Know Retinoids Part One, we learned about retinoids, which species we know and what effects it has on the skin. For beginners introducing actives, there is always fear, as they do not know which form to choose, what concentration of active ingredient to choose for the first attempt, what amount of product to apply, and whether the active ingredient included in their routine can also be combined with other pre-existing products in their routine. All of these questions are answered in this post.

Which form of retinoid should I choose?

In the post Getting to Know Retinoids Part 1, we looked at possible forms of retinoids available in the market. But what form to choose? Namely, we all want maximum effects, but a beginner certainly cannot start with tretinoin (biologically active form – the golden standard). For beginners, it is advisable to choose the least “strong” form of retinoid (retinol or Granactive Retinoid) to avoid side effects. After the skin becomes accustomed to a certain form of retinoid and concentration, you can reach for a stronger form.

At the same time, you should be aware that there are cosmetics and medicines with vitamin A derivatives. If you are experiencing serious acne or melasma, it is best to consult a dermatologist about the use of vitamin A derivatives, who will prescribe the correct topical or systemic forms.

Which retinoid concentration to choose?

The second biggest problem for beginners is which retinoid concentration to choose and when to increase the concentration. The easiest tip is to stick to forms of retinoids that are not available in many concentrations. Start with the lowest concentration. Retinol, available in concentrations of 0.1-1%, is the most begrudging form for beginners, while retinaldehyde and Granactive retinoid come in only two or three different concentrations. So after you choose the right form, choose the lowest possible concentration at the beginning.

When to Increase Retinoid Strength and Move to Higher Concentration?

It takes our skin about 6 weeks to fully recover and at that time we can evaluate or need higher concentrations to maximize the effects of the asset. If the skin has become completely accustomed to the daily use of retinoid, you can increase the concentration of the selected retinoid after about 2 months. When you reach the maximum concentration of the selected retinoid available in the market, you can introduce a stronger form of retinoids.

Can I use retinoids every night from the beginning?

When you start using retinoids, remind yourself that this is not a sprint, but long distance running. So, start slow – do not start using retinoids daily. Many dermatologists recommend that you initially use retinoids every second or third evening, starting with smaller amounts (pea size or half a pad).

If, after about two weeks, you find that your use of retinoids is appropriate, you can increase the number of evenings you use (eg every night). At the same time, you can also increase the amount of retinoid you use (whole pad).

How Do I Apply Retinoid Properly?

Before using retinoids, make sure you have a good serum (with ceramides, niacinamide) to apply in the evening before using retinoids. By using this kind of product before applying the retinoid, we increase the skin’s tolerance while preventing the retinoid from lingering and irritating in areas where the skin is already dry. Before applying the retinoids apply the serum and wait at least 10 minutes for it to absorb into the skin.

Give particular attention to the thinner parts of the skin, especially around the eyes and lips, before applying the retinoid. Apply a lip balm to the lips before applying the retinoids.

When applying the selected retinoid, be sure to rub the product into the skin to ensure that the effect is where we want it to be. Take special care where you have wrinkles, as the product may linger there and potentially irritate the skin.

How is it when using other actives at the time of retinoid introduction?

At the time you start using retinoids, stop using all other assets such as acids and various vitamins. Not because they would fight with each other, but to reduce the possibility of side effects (dryness, irritation, redness. Because each skin has individual needs, it is possible that you can quickly re-integrate all other assets into your routine, but not necessary. In the beginning, focus only on the use of retinoids.

Sunscreen, sunscreen, sunscreen!

Use the right amount of sunscreen every day (2mg / cm2)! Retinoids increase the photosensitivity of the skin and make it more sensitive to UV radiation. Despite the fact that the use of retinoids in the long run increases the thickness of the dermis and increases the synthesis of collagen and elastin, inappropriate protection against UV radiation can cause the opposite, namely the collapse of collagen.

Myths about retinoids

Retinoids should not be used in combination with acids

There is no research anywhere to prove or conclude that AHA or BHA deactivate or make retinol less effective when used in the same skin care routine. The misconception about using retinol with AHA or BHA is related to the pH value of acid peels that lower the skin’s pH. This is thought to interfere with the ability of retinol to convert to the active form, which has not, of course, been proven.

Retinoids should not be used in combination with Vitamin C

Vitamin C is another ingredient that is claimed not to be used in combination with retinol. Like the myth of AHA and BHA, this one is based on the pH / acidity issue. Vitamin C requires a low pH in order to remain stable. We know that retinol works in an acidic environment and that the pH of the skin is naturally acidic, so what research has shown us is a clear example where combining vitamin C + retinol makes sense.

Retinoids are one of the most popular cosmetically active ingredients. However, this reputation is not in vain. They have many positive effects on the skin when used properly. In the first part of our post about retinoids, we’ll look at the types of retinoids and how different retinoids work on our skin.

What are retinoids?

The term retinoids is used to refer to all naturally occurring vitamin A forms, carotenoids and synthesis analogues that have no vitamin activity. Retinoids are classified into three generations based on their molecular structure. Inside the body, retinoids bind to several classes of proteins, including binding proteins and retinoid nuclear receptors. Then a small portion of Vitamin A is converted into a biologically active form – all trans retinoic acid.

The active form of all-trans retinoic acid binds to a DNA molecule via retinoid receptors. This triggers the action of genes that affect the synthesis of collagen, elastin, hyaluronic acid and other proteins.

What kinds of retinoids do we know?

The gold standard of retinoid activity is all trans retinoic acid (tretinoin). The effects of all other retinoids are compared to the gold standard. Tretinoin is banned for use in cosmetic products in Europe, which is why you find other forms of Vitamin A. In addition to tretinoin, the retinoid family also includes vitamin A (retinol) and its natural derivatives such as retinaldehyde, retinyl palmitate and other forms.

We have enzymes in our skin that convert other forms of retinoids into active forms. The form that is stored in our skin is retinyl palmitate. This is converted to retinol (vitamin A) by enzymes. Retinol is enzymatically converted to retinaldehyde, and the last step is the conversion to the active form – retinoic acid. So the further you go with the retinoid form away from the active form, the less effective it will be. The lower efficiency can be attributed to the conversion.

Why is the use of retinoids so popular?

Vitamin A is found in products for the care of mature or acne skin.

Retinoids are known to influence various cellular processes, such as cell growth and differentiation. Retinoid use normalizes keratinization. Retinoids are very popular because of the effects they exert on the skin. They are often included in cosmetics as they have a rejuvenating effect. Namely, the use of retinoids reduces the appearance of wrinkles, cleanses pores, brightens pigment spots, uniforms skin complexion and improves skin texture. The skin is cleaner and more radiant when using retinoids.

The gold standard of retinoid activity

Retinoic acid was first used for the care of acne skin, in which it showed significant improvement. Then, in his studies, Klingman examined the effect of retinoic acid on photostated skin. He found that reticulin fibers were recovered in photoaged skin subjects using tretinoin, and a greater amount of collagen (type I and III) was synthesized in the dermis. Retinoic acid also has an indirect effect by inhibiting enzymes called metalloproteinases that break down extracellular matrix components (collagen, elastin, hyaluronic acid), so many say it also acts as an antioxidant.

Which Retinoid To Choose For Skin Care?

Retinyl palmitate is not an effective form, as it takes several steps to convert to the active form, which results in reduced efficacy. At the same time, this form is not well absorbed into the skin and applied topically to the skin has virtually no effect.

Another possible form is retinol, which is probably known to anyone not living in the Stone Age. Retinol is very unstable in light, so it is important that it is packaged and stored properly. Retinol is a derivative of choice in cosmetics. It is found in concentrations of 0.1% – 1.0%.

Retinaldehyde is one step closer to retinoic acid, but is still 20 times less effective than tretinoin. It is gentle and is a good choice for beginners.

A very known complex is called Granactive retinoid. This form is the cosmetic ester of retinoic acid. The interesting thing about this form is that it does not have to convert in the skin like other forms of retinoids, but it has an immediate effect as it acts directly on the retinoid receptors. It is a fairly new form that has not been extensively researched.

We live in an age where the cosmetics industry is evolving at lightening speed. Almost no longer is a person using only face cream. Most of us use at least 3 products or more at a time. This is called cosmetic layering. The layering method has many advocates, but more and more opponents are also found.

Layering is a skin care technique that comes from Asia. This technique consists of applying various cosmetic products to the face in a certain order. We often think that this technique is popular only among Asians. Layering is a technique that is used by more and more people who dedicate more to their skin than just face cream.

How bad is layering cosmetic products really?

So, the opponents of layering accuse this method of applying amount of preservatives that exceeds the maximum concentration on the skin. Manufacturers rarely use the maximum amount of preservatives allowed. Maximum allowable concentrations are set so that even the most sensitive skin does not develop a reaction. Another thing to know here is that concentrations do NOT add up! Just as SPF does not add up, so do concentrations.

If you have 100 ml of tonic containing 0.1% phenoxyethanol and 250 ml serum containing 0.15% phenoxyethanol this is not 0.35% phenoxyethanol. Unfortunately, the calculation is not so easy. While you need to know that you cannot calculate the concentration of two different preservatives. The calculation is only possible for the same ingredient.

The calculation shows that the total concentration is 0.13%, which means that the concentration increase is minimal. Such deviations would only cause problems for people with really sensitive skin. So if you want, you still use face tonic as these preservatives will not “eat away” your face because of one coat anymore.

About the layering of several different preservatives, have you ever wondered that even in many cosmetics, many different preservatives are used to maximize product protection? If there is no scare on that product, then we don’t need to scold it here either.

How to layer Cosmetic Products Properly?

In the case of layering, there is one simple rule: always apply the least viscous product first. Then we continue with more viscous products. The skin care process is always started with water-based products, ie tonic, moisturizing serum, serum with active ingredients based on water. Water-based products make it easier to cross the skin and therefore need to be applied first.

Why would water-based products cross your skin?

We should think of the skin as a structure containing large molecules such as squalene, fatty acids, waxes, esters and triglycerides. These molecules are huge compared to water, but they are not clustered together like bricks, but there is some space between them. Because of this space between the larger molecules, water can flow from the skin (transepidermal water loss) and into the skin!

The most viscous products such as creams, oils or butter should be applied at the end. For the most part, these ingredients act emolliently and occlusively. Occlusive action means that these products form a water-tight film on the surface of the skin. So it is a good idea to apply a water-based serum before the cream or oil, as moisture will lock into the skin. Namely, the problems with applying oil first and then water-based serum are more problematic.

• The active ingredient in the serum would not reach the skin – water and oil were repelled, so the water-based serum would remain on the surface of the oil

• A drop of serum that would be on the surface of the oil would evaporate over time

So it’s a shame to throw serum away. However, we should be aware that no product forms an occlusive layer on the skin for a very long time. Also, occlusive creams that are designed to prevent moisture loss and other substances from penetrating the skin are not exactly flowering in the performance of their function.

Particular attention should be paid to the active ingredients

Some cosmetically active ingredients are very effective, but they are known to have poor skin penetration. An example of such an active ingredient is vitamin C (ascorbic acid), which crosses the skin barrier very poorly. Therefore, such ingredients should be used in the first stages of care so that they are as close as possible to the skin and thus have a greater chance of reaching the desired site.

What is the correct order of product layering?

We first start with a tonic to restore the skin’s natural pH. We continue with a water-based serum designed to moisturize the skin (hyaluronic acid, glycerol, ..) or a serum containing active ingredients (acids, vitamin C, vitamin B, peptides). The last step, as mentioned above, is to apply a cream or oil that locks all previously applied ingredients into the skin. During the day, make sure to apply sun cream!

Excessive use of the active ingredients can irritate the skin!

There is nothing wrong with layering cosmetics. As long as you layer products that mostly provide moisture, there are few things that could go wrong. However, the same does not apply to active ingredients. Using too many active ingredients increases the potential for them to “fight” with each other. This can cause skin irritation or incomplete passage into the skin. Incomplete passage causes the ingredient to remain on the skin, which can clog pores and subsequently cause pimples.

Because ingredients are more active and effective than ever before, they can also irritate the skin if you overdo them or use them in combinations that are not suitable for your skin type. One of the common mistakes with which we overload the skin is to combine products containing glycolic or salicylic acid with retinoids at the same time – so that we use both in the evening.

The stronger the product, the more conservative we are about the amount of application and the frequency of use.

What is your opinion on the layering of cosmetics?

We regularly protect our body with sunscreen, as today’s society is becoming more aware of the harmful effects of UV radiation. The only area on the body that we do not protect is hair. However, UV radiation can also affect the properties and appearance of hair. What happens to hair when the unprotected are exposed to the sun and what products can protect them?

Like other tissues, hair is made up mostly of proteins. Hair consists of 85% keratin, 1-3% lipids, trace metal ions (aluminum, chromium, calcium, magnesium), water and pigments. UV rays have a high protein breakdown ability, so it’s no surprise that summer can be a difficult period for the hair.

UV hair protection is important

Many people are unaware that their hair is also affected by UV radiation. In the scientific literature, hair damage from UV radiation is associated with dryness, increased breakage and split tips, lower shine, and increased roughness of the hair surface. Not all of these changes occur immediately or all in the same place.

UVB radiation affects the hair approximately 5 μm below the surface. For healthy hair, it is primarily the outer layer. In the case of hair that has already been severely damaged by intensive bleaching and heat treatments, the outer layer may be absent. In this case, UVB radiation is exposed to the cortex of the hair. UVA radiation is less intense, but it can penetrate deeper and may affect the entire cortex.

All The Ordinary and NIOD products can be purchased at Beautyology.eu.

To some extent, hair can protect itself

Melanin is a pigment that is responsible for skin and hair color and protection against the harmful effects of sunlight. An interesting fact is that blacks are rarely burned by the sun, as their melanin is significantly more active than ours and therefore protects them from burns. The same goes for hair. Eumelanin, which is present in individuals with darker shades of hair, is more photostable than pheomelanin, which is predominant in redheads and those with lighter hair. Therefore, darker hair is more protected than lighter hair.

Melanin works by disabling the free radicals that form when exposed to UV radiation. This prevents free radicals from affecting keratin, the main protein in the hair. In the process, damage to the melanin molecule occurs, which turns light. This is the reason we have lighter hair at sea than we usually do.

Why does hair get grey and why isn’t it protected?

Hair turns gray when pigmentation stops. Pigments are secreted by stem cells that begin to die off. The stem cells in the upper layer of the skin develop into melanin-producing cells. Melanin-producing cells are called melanocytes. Melanocytes transfer the pigment to growing hair, making the hair a distinctive color. As we age, the stem cells start to die off and no longer develop into melanocytes, so the hair becomes gray.

When the hair ages, there are no more melanin-forming cells. So when melanin is gone, we no longer have a molecule to protect our hair from the harmful effects of UV radiation. Exposure to the sun can do more damage to such hair, as they are less resilient. A group of people with such hair needs the highest UV protection.

In what ways can the sun affect the properties of your hair?

  • Formation of free radical substances (ROS)
  • Discoloration
  • Disruption of disulfide bridges
  • Changes to the cuticle
  • Some amino acids absorb UV light and form free radicals that break the disulfide bonds.
  • In darker hair, melanin can be photooxidized, while in lighter hair, some amino acids are destroyed, causing discoloration.
  • Keratins in the hair are interconnected by disulfide bonds – bridges. Light breaks them down to form cysteic acid, which in turn makes hair less resilient and less elastic.
  • Melanin is found in the inner layer of the hair, but not in the outer layer, so it is not protected. After that, it is most exposed to UV radiation. The “roofers” that make up the cuticle are more open and lose weight.

Are UV protection products the hair solution?

For the protection of hair we use various products to which manufacturers add UVA and UVB filters as classic sunscreens that we use to protect the skin. The main problem with these products is that they cannot be applied evenly over the entire surface of the hair, which means that some parts of the hair are not protected. Another challenge is to create a sun protection formulation that will adhere to the hair shaft. In addition, it is almost impossible to apply a uniform thickness of sunscreen to all your hair without looking greasy.

How do UV hair protection products work?

Some shampoos for colored hair contain UV filters, as this should prolong the color lifespan (prevent fading). However, the problem again arises with shampoos as these products need to be completely rinsed off the surface of the hair and thus some UV filters can also be flushed. As a result, the ability to protect hair is limited.

A better approach to UV hair protection is to use balms that form a film on the surface of the hair that is not rinsed between 15-30 minutes. As a result, UV filters can adhere better to hair and offer more effective protection.

Hair styling products are probably the most effective in providing photoprotection. These products include non-rinse balms, gels and hair sprays.

If you massage balms that do not need to be rinsed, they will act as a heat protection agent and UV protection just before drying, as they remain on the hair.

The most effective products that protect against UV radiation are hair dyes

Non-pigmented hair (white, gray) is more prone to UV damage than pigmented hair. This means that molecules of hair dye trapped inside the hair provide some protection against UV damage. Although hair dyes damage the hair tissue, this way the hair is protected from the harmful effects of UV radiation. Hair coloring causes damage to the hair fibers, but when the hair is exposed to prolonged periods of UV radiation, the antioxidant effect of the dye that binds inside the hair outweighs the initial detrimental effect of dyeing. Hair dyes act as antioxidants that prevent the disulfide bonds in keratin from breaking.

What do UV hair protection products contain?

First of all, it should be emphasized that the regulations in the field of hair protection are not as strict as in the field of skin protection. We cannot determine the exact SPF protection factor for hair products. However, there is a Hair Protection Factor (HPF) based on the change in mechanical properties between protected and unprotected hair. There is also a Radical Hair Protection Factor (RHF) that differentiates products based on their ability to prevent ROS from UV radiation.

The products contain UV filters, silicones that form a hair film and antioxidants. In addition, hair protection products also contain moisturizers, emollients, antistatic agents as well as thermal hair protection substances. Natural extracts that protect the hair include walnut, beech, aloe vera, green tea, chamomile, lotus and oils such as monoi.

All The Ordinary products have been donated to create this post by Beautyology.eu.

Since the use of sunscreens has been on the rise, they have gained many advocates as well as many opponents. Opponents of sunscreens claim that they block the synthesis of vitamin D, which is essential for our health. There are also extreme opponents who claim that using sunscreens is more harmful than unprotected sun exposure. However, is it true that sunscreens block vitamin D synthesis?

Basic information on vitamin D

Vitamin D acts as a hormone in the body and is synthetized by UV light. Vitamin D comes in two forms (D₂, D₃). Vitamin D₂ is obtained from plant nutrition and oral supplements. Vitamin D₃ is mainly obtained by exposing the skin to ultraviolet B (UVB) radiation in sunlight and consuming foods such as oily fish. Vitamin D₂ and D₃ are metabolised in the liver and kidney to 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D or calcitriol, which is a biologically active form. Calcitriol plays an important role in regulating the metabolism of calcium, phosphate for maintaining metabolic functions and for skeletal health.

How can one get vitamin D?

Vitamin D is also found in mushrooms, wheat germ oil, egg yolk, liver and fish oil. Vitamin D content in most foods ranges from 50 to 200 units per serving. Therefore, food cannot provide enough vitamin D, which is why most people synthetize it after sun exposure. Sun-induced vitamin D synthesis is strongly influenced by season, time of day, latitude, altitude, air pollution, skin pigmentation, use of sunscreens, passage through glass and plastic, and age.

Interesting fact: Even when older people are regularly exposed to sunlight, they produce 75% less vitamin D3 than young people.

Inadequate vitamin D intake can lead to postmenopausal osteoporosis and reduced bone density. Low vitamin D intake is also associated with heart and vascular diseases, depression, dementia and other conditions.

How is vitamin D synthesized after sun exposure?

Vitamin D3 can be produced in the skin when exposed to ultraviolet radiation B (UVB), so it is possible to increase vitamin D3 levels by exposure to UVB rays. During exposure to sunlight, radiation with a wavelength of 290–315 nm penetrates the skin. Most of this UVB radiation is absorbed in the epidermis, so when exposed to sunlight, most of the vitamin D3 is produced in the skin, in the living cells of the epidermis.

A quick recap on UV radiation

As we already know, exposure to UV radiation is not safe. Namely, we divide the UV spectrum into ozone-retained UVC rays, UVB rays that cause sunburns, UVA rays that cause photoaging. Unnecessarily prolonged exposure to UV light without protection can lead to skin cancer. For a reason, sunscreens have been developed to protect us from the harmful effects of UV radiation. Sun creams are designed to absorb and partially repel UVB radiation.

All The Ordinary and NIOD products can be purchased at Beautyology.eu, where you can use code COSMEDOC10.

If sunscreen blocks UVB rays does it block vitamin D synthesis as well?

Well, here we are. Where scientists from different disciplines are arguing with each other. Last time, I heard from a colleague that one dermatologist claimed that reduced vitamin D synthesis from sunscreens is more harmful than unprotected sun exposure. To put it mildly, I was almost hit by a stroke, but let’s go down the line. Sunscreen with sun protection factor (SPF) 30 absorbs approximately 96% of UVB radiation. So, by adding 2 + 2, topical application of sunscreen with SPF 30 reduces the skin’s ability to produce vitamin D3 by the same amount, ie 96%.

In principle, we calculated that only 4% of UVB radiation can access our skin with SPF 30, which is a very low chance for vitamin D synthesis, right? But this is where  you need to ask yourself how much sunscreen you really apply to your skin. In order to achieve the protection stated on the packaging – so in our case SPF 30 we need to apply 2mg / cm2 of skin. For the whole face, this means two full fingers of the cream.

A short calculation to back up my claims

The average surface area of ​​all skin in an adult is 1.5-2.0 m². So if we need to apply 2mg / cm² the calculation is as follows.

The result is 32 g per coat. Therefore, 1/3 of the entire 100 ml tube of sunscreen should be used to properly protect the entire body. Of course, we did not take into account that the sunscreen should be reapplied every 2 hours.

Let’s be real, we apply such a small amount of sunscreen to the body that the question is if we have an SPF protection factor of 5. So with SPF 5, we are about 70% protected against UVB radiation. This may sound like a lot, but this time it can pass as much as 30% of UVB radiation to the skin! Not to mention some body parts that are not usually protected at all. Or maybe we are in the shade and don’t put sunscreen on because the UVB rays can’t reach us. All of these unprotected parts allow 100% passage of UVB radiation and thus synthesis of Vitamin D, but also increased chances of skin cancer.

UVA protection is beneficial for Vitamin D

A number of studies investigating the influence of sunscreen on vitamin D synthesis have found that the use of sunscreen is likely to have minimal impact on vitamin D. UVA rays have no effect on vitamin D synthesis, although one in vitro study showed that UVA2 (315–340 nm) can cause vitamin D to break down, in which case protection against UVA may be beneficial for vitamin D production.

Controlled field studies with true sun exposure are the best way to determine the effect of sunscreen on vitamin D synthesis. The results of such studies report that no change in serum 25 (OH) D3 vitamin concentration occurs despite the use of sunscreen.

In fact, most studies published to date have shown no association between the use of sunscreens and vitamin D deficiency, nor with regular use of SPF> 15. In general, other protective methods (eg, shading, wearing protective clothing and long sleeves) ) affect vitamin D status more than using sunscreens.

UV radiation is more dangerous than sunscreens

Daily skin protection is recommended for all skin phototypes. This includes staying in the shade, wearing headgear and clothing, wearing sunglasses, and applying broad-spectrum sunscreen. These strategies will help prevent sunburn and skin cancer. The use of sunscreen for daily sun protection does not compromise the synthesis of skin vitamin D synthesis, even when the sunscreen is used in the predicted amounts (2mg / cm2). Increasing UVA-PF in sunscreens, however, even improves vitamin D3 production.

In case of reduced vitamin D level, this should be replaced. Oral supplementation is easy and does not pose significant risks. The risk-benefit calculation shows that, instead of sunbathing, it is better to take nutritional supplements with this vitamin to increase vitamin D3 levels.

Skinfairytale sent two new products to the market before the summer and these are the natural body makeup Chocotan and the natural Aftersun lotion. Why is natural Chocotan a better choice than classic self-tanning product and what kind of wonders does the Aftersun lotion do?

The only light spectrum we talk about is UV light spectrum. However, the light spectrum also contains visible light and IR radiation. What are the effects of visible light on the skin and should we be protected from visible light as well?

Firstly, let’s get it clear. What is visible light?

Visible or blue light is an electromagnetic wavelength between 400 and 700 nm. This spectrum is able to be seen by a naked eye, well to most of the population. Some people aren’t able to see the full spectrum and somebody can see beyond the spectrum.

When a beam of visible light reaches to a body, the photons can be reflected or absorbed on the surface of this body. They can penetrate the body or be absorbed or dispersed into components. The last option for photons is to continue their path undisturbed.

Why is the sky more blue on days with no clouds and at sunset yellow or red?

The sky is blue because the blue photons are better scattered by the air molecules and are directed to our eyes. At sunset, we can see the sky red, because blue photons are scattered away so we can’t see them and on the , there are only red or yellow photons, which can be detected by a naked eye. At sunset, the journey of the light through the atmosphere to our eyes is longer than it is at midday.

Why do we see blood red?

Blood is red because it absorbs blue and green wavelength and red is being reflected. The grass is green because it absorbs red and blue wavelengths and the green is being reflected.

Energy dynamics

Why are we explaining all this? Molecules are able to form new chemical structures with other molecules being particular states. They can also transfer an electron to other molecules to create reactive oxygen species (ROS), which are able to destroy our DNA. Studies have shown that visible light doesn’t only affect the ROS but also matrix metalloproteases.

Visible light and skin

Melanin is responsible for skin color and can be found in the epidermis. Melanin partially absorbs visible light, which can cause hyperpigmentation and uneven skin tone. The dermis contains blood vessels that are capable of absorbing blue and green light. Other photons, which are scattered around can penetrate into adipocytes in subcutis. Fat cells are capable of partial absorption of red photons.

A candlelight dinner is therefore good for people with mature skin. The blood vessels in mature skin are closer to the surface and can absorb more blue and green light and the wrinkles are more visible on daylight. When we are next to candles this doesn’t happen, because candles absorb only red and yellow photons, which aren’t absorbed by blood and vessels are less visible (consequently are also wrinkles less visible).

Per unit of energy, visible light is 20 to 30 times less effect than UV, but there is 10 to 15 times more visible light in the solar spectrum than UV, so visible light cannot be neglected.

Good and bad qualities of visible light

Visible light helps to promote photoageing. It’s able to promote inflammation and consequently, inflammation phenomenon accelerates ageing. All that affects our DNA.

Those were bad news, but there are also good ones.

The use of foundation (powders) and other decorative cosmetics prevents visible light from harming us. Decorative cosmetics in fact protect us from the negative effects of visible light. Moreover, visible light even shows therapeutic effects (treatment of psoriasis, eczema, acne).

Acne

Porphyrins in Cutibacterium acnes (before Propionibacterium acnes) are particularly sensitive to visible light. When the skin is exposed to visible light, endogenous toxins are formed. They kill the microorganisms which are responsible for acne formation. Visible light alleviates inflammation, redness and aesthetic discomfort.

Bilirubin

Another positive effect is seen in premature babies. Their system isn’t capable of removing bilirubin. The accumulation of bilirubin increases the risk of jaundice which can harm brains and liver. Premature babies are irradiated with visible light because it’s able to reduce bilirubin to normal levels.

So how safe is the visible light?

If the blue light is used only for a short time, it doesn’t show negative effects and should be safe (skin testing in vivo). However, we don’t know what it would be like to be exposed to the visible light for a long time.

What seems curious is that while studying visible light, the radiation in the spectrum between 410 and 420 nm showed cytotoxicity to human fibroblasts. But wavelengths between 453 and 480 nm didn’t. This is pretty logical since the first two wavelengths are closer to UV radiation and exhibit similar effects as UV light, while the other two are longer wavelengths and they don’t show these effects. Therefore, it is believed that sunscreens should have UV protection above 400 nm as well.

Where can a blue light be found?

The most common source of blue light is electronic devices such as screens, tablets, smartphones, and LEDs. Studies suggest that blue light is also expected to have negative effects on our eyes.

What substances can protect us from the negative effects?

So far, has shown activity in the visible spectrum only: titanium dioxide, zinc oxide, bis-benzotriazolyl tetramethylbutylphenol (MBBT), but their protection is low. They tested 3 % titanium dioxide and 4 % MBBT, which were expected to block 50 % of blue light between 400 and 500 nm.

The microalgae extract Scenedesmus rubescens reduces the negative effects of blue light, also vitamins B3 and B6 have been tested on preventing blue light negative effects (table in “Into the blue”). Vitamin E also provides good protection against visible light.

Tested ingredients (vitamin B3, B6 and algae extract) inhibit the formation of ROS caused by blue light (source: Mendrok-Edinger C., Campiche R., Gadsinski K., Schuetz R. Into The Blue. Cosmetics and Toiletries 2018)

Also, carotenoids, which act as antioxidants, are able to protect the skin from the negative effects of blue light. In addition, their maximum activity is precisely in the visible light spectrum, so they may represent potential biological protection against blue light.

Every facial care should begin with proper skin cleansing. Lately there is a lot of talk about “double cleaning” of the skin. Do you know what the purpose of the double cleaning is, and why most use this method? How does micellar water work and how do soaps work?

What is the purpose of cleaning the skin?

Throughout the day, we are exposed to our cosmetic products and various environmental pollutants. With our hands we touch our faces, and in the winter there is a lot of smog and all this accumulates on the surface of our skin and in the pores. Because of all the impurities that accumulate, the skin needs to be cleaned in order to keep it healthy. Under all pollutants, pores become clogged and this may be reflected as an increased excretion of sebum or the formation of comedons.

Skin should also be cleaned in the morning. In the morning, it is necessary to wash the cosmetic products that were applied in the evening, from the face. At the same time, dust is on our head, which is also passed on to our face. So, before the next morning you start to apply morning care, first cleanse your skin.

How do cleaners work?

Surfactants

We know that water and oil do not like eachother. The oil is lighter than water and will therefore always float above the water, and these two substances will not be united by themselves. The reason for this is the excessive surface tension between them. For stabilization, however, a substance is needed, which will reduce the inter-phase voltage, and these are surfactants.

One of the most typical activities for surfactants is cleaning. Surfactants are key ingredients of cosmetic products such as soaps, cleansing gels, shampoos and sparkling baths.

Surface-active substances are substances that, due to their chemical structure, are distributed at the boundary between the two phases. The characteristic of surfactants is the presence of a hydrophilic and hydrophobic part in the chemical structure. Surfactants influence the dissolution of substances with different mechanisms.

Solubilization

Solubilization means increasing the solubility of a poorly water-soluble substance with surfactants. The mechanism involves “catching” (adsorbed or dissolved) molecules in the micelles.

Cleaners work on the principle of solubilization. By solubilizing the substance, the solubility and dissolution rate of the substance is increased. More broadly, solubilization also involves the use of other methods of increasing solubility, such as, for example, use of co-solvent.

How does micellar water work?

The main ingredients of micellar water are water and one or more surfactants.
We can imagine micelles as a leaf that is folded back into itself. The way it folds depends on the media that surrounds it. In the aqueous medium, the micelle has hydrophobic tails on the inner side and the polar head on the outside. If the medium is an organic solvent, then the components of the micelle are turned – the polar heads are inward, and the hydrophobic chain is outwards.

By increasing the amount of surfactant in the aqueous solution, the surface tension drops until the molecules fill the boundary surface between the aqueous and the oil phase. At a given concentration, the surfaces between water and oil are saturated and surfactants begin to aggregate and form aggregates called micelles. The concentration at which micelles begin to form is called critical micelle concentration.

When the micellar water is applied to the face, the micelles capture the oily components into their interior. This happens because they are arranged in such a way that the lipophilic (hydrophobic) tails look at the place where the oil and other impurities are caught.

Why is it necessary to rinse off micellar water?

You must have heard that the micellar water needs to be washed off. Because they contain surfactants they can have a negative effect on the skin. Surface-active substances differ, some are gentle (eg syndrome), some are more aggressive (sodium lauryl sulphate).

It is known that the constant use of surfactants for cleaning has a negative effect on the skin. For decades, scientists have thought that the mechanism for damaged skin barrier is the removal of lipids from the porous layer. Recent studies show that surface-active substances cause denaturalization of skin proteins and interact with keratin.

Types of cleaning agents

Soaps

Soaps are a general term used for preparations containing alkaline (basic) salts from mostly solid fatty acids. Classical soaps are the most alkaline formulations with a pH value of between 9 and 10.

Glycerine soaps are made from glycerol and natural glycerine oils. Glycerin is a humidifier, which is often used for moisturizing and protecting the skin. This helps neutralize the effect of drying alkalis.

Superfatted soaps: contain glycerol, but also a wide range of lipids that help restore the lipid layer in the skin (triglycerides, natural oils and fats).

Antibacterial soaps include antibacterial substances such as carbanil and triclosan.

Soap with the syndets

They are made of surfactants, such as sulfuric acid esters and isoethates of fatty acids. These soaps have a pH of 5 to 6. However, they contain synthetic components.

Liquid cleaning agents

They can contain several natural and synthetic surfactants and various moisturizers and lipids.

Oil-free cleaning agents

Rich in fatty alcohols that allow you to clean your skin without the need for water. These formulations are rapidly dried and include moisturizing agents to prevent possible irritation.

Cleaning creams

These formulations are a mixture of surfactants, lipids and waxes. These have traditionally been used to treat patients with atopic dermatitis due to the high fat content that can form a protective barrier on the skin.

Double skin cleansing

Double cleaning is a method where two different types of cleaning agents are used, one after the other. In the case of two cleaning, first clean your face with clean oil, oil-based cleaning fluid or cleansing milk. Then there is followed by purification with a water soluble cream, gel or foam. Cleaning with oil-based products helps dissolve make-ups and water-resistant juicy creams. Compared to pure oils, modern cleaning oils contain emulsifiers that allow the oil to mix with water and form a milk emulsion. This facilitates skin rinsing.

How to properly clean the sun cream from the face?

A non-waterproof sun cream can be washed with a cleansing gel or oil, and waterproof sunscreen cleans only cleaning oil. The sun protection product can be partly removed with water, but this is a less effective way, compared to cleansing gel and oil. In addition, cleaning oil, in comparison with the cleansing gel, can less irritate the skin and dry it less.

Hair is exposed to chemical and mechanical stress and stress from the environment daily. All this leaves the consequences of hair, such as weaker, brittle hair and lost hair shine. For the purpose of restoring the hair surface, we use cosmetic hair restoration products, especially hair balms. This time, in Slovenian cosmetics, we represent the brand Eterika, which created the entire line of hair restoration products.

First, some hair facts

Human hair is naturally the same as all epidermal appendix that are typical of mammals. Their main function is to protect the body from external factors. The scalp differs from the skin on other parts of the body, as it is full of large hair follicles from which long hair fibers grow. A large sebaceous gland is attached to each of the hair fibers. Each hair is composed of the shaft, the cortex and the core. The shaft of the hair is an envelope that protects against the ingress of water and consists of several layers of cells that overlap like tiles.

Straight and curly hair are composed of different cells

Two types of cells are present in the cortex: orthocortic and paracortic. Paracortic cells having a higher density are more resistant to moisture and are characterized by flat hair, and lower-density orthocortic cells are more sensitive to moisture and are characteristic of curly hair.

Chemical composition of hair

Like other tissues, hair is also made mostly from proteins. The hair consists of 85% keratin, which has a very high content of sulfur-containing amino acids (15% cystine). Hair fibers consist of 1-3% lipids, trace metal ions (aluminum, chromium, calcium, magnesium), water and pigments.

Fun facts about hair

Hair has two basic properties—strength and elasticity. It is remarkably resistant; a single hair fiber can carry a weight of 100 g without breaking, and can extend by 20–30% when dry and 100% when wet without breaking. This resistance is due to the presence, composition and organization of the cortex protein keratin.

Hair damage and how to deal with repairing the hair structure

The number of consumers with damaged hair continues to grow due to external factors. There appear:

mechanical damage: combing, hair straighteners

chemical damage: hair dyeing and bleaching

environmental damage: sun, pollution

Hair after this kind of damage needs to be corrected at several levels from the middle of the cortex to the shaft. Hair conditioners are usually composed of filmmakers, such as silicones. The filmmakers cover their hair with a fine waterproof layer and thus slow down or prevent the penetration of active substances into the hair’s interior.

The role of hair conditioners

Hair conditioners restore the structure and affect the appearance of hair. Also, the use of hair conditioners can make it easier to comb and reduce the tension between hairs. Balms also increase the shine and volume of the hair and improve their structure. Among the hair restoration ingredients are mostly cationic surfactants such as stearalkonium chloride, cetrimonium chloride, dicytilimony chloride, PEG-2 cocochromic chloride and others.

The texture of the hair can also be restored in a completely natural way. In the case of Eterika, Anja created as many as 3 natural hair balms. The most important ingredients of Eterika’s Balm are emollients. These are lipophilic substances that give hair a shine. Emollients are distributed over the hair to form a transparent film that repels water.

Main ingredients in Eterika conditioners

Coconut oil

Aside from making a great moisturizer for hair and scalp, the oil has been used as a natural remedy to combat frizz, get rid of dandruff, remove and prevent lice and promote hair growth. Its antibacterial properties may ward off folliculitis, an infection of the hair follicles, and may also fight fungal infections, such as ringworm of the scalp.

Funfact: Did it ever happen to you, that you got a chewing gum in your hair? Coconut oil can even be used to extract chewing gum from hair.

While pure coconut oil can improve scalp health, therefore improving the conditions for growing thicker, fuller hair, it does not treat the underlying cause of hair loss and cannot be relied on for treating baldness related to dihydrotestosterone.

Argan oil

Argan oil is a versatile oil that helps hydrate and soften the hair. Argan oil is rich in oleic and linoleic acid, but also contains high levels of squalene and vitamin E, which act as antioxidants. Argan oil should naturally increase the elasticity of the hair and consistently renew the shine of the hair. Vitamin E is a lipophilic antioxidant that protects against free radicals. Lately, vitamin E is said to be an ‘anti-pollution’ component, as it should prevent harmful effects of the environment.

Behentrimonium methosulfate

This ingredient in derived from rapeseed oil. It is a very mild yet effective ingredient known for it’s de-tangling and hair thickening properties. Because this ingredient directly deposits onto the hair follicle to smooth out the cuticles, it’s highly regarded for its conditioning abilities. It can be found in many hair products like conditioner, detangler, shampoo and styling gel. It also acts as an emulsifying agent, gentle enough to be used in baby products that are left on the skin. When used in lotions and creams, it gives a soft and powdery after-touch to the skin.

Kako uporabljati balzame za lase?

Po umivanju lase utremo z brisačo, da zmanjšamo navlaženost las. Balzam razporedimo po dolžini las in počakamo nekaj minut za boljši učinek (3-5 min). Nato balzam izperemo. Pri suhih laseh lahko nanesemo balzam po celotni dolžini las, pri mastnih pa le po konicah, saj bo drugače balzam preveč zmastil že tako mastno lasišče. Pri zelo suhih laseh je skoraj nujna uporaba mask za lase.

Nasvet za najboljši možen učinek balzama: Balzam nanesemo na za dlje časa, lahko tudi čez noč, tako da lase zavijemo v vlažno brisačo ali plastično folijo. V balzam pa lahko kapneš tudi nekaj kapljic keratina.

Najina izkušnja z Eterika balzami

Na voljo so trije balzami in sicer za vse tipe las z vonjem vanilije, proti razcepljenim in suhim konicam s pelargonijo in sivko ter za neukrotljive lase s kokosom. Glede na to, da gre za balzam ima zelo bogato teksturo, v bistvu je že skoraj kot maska. Po uporabi se lasje zelo enostavno razčešejo in so mehki, ter sijoči. Da o vonju ne govorimo, saj zelo lepo dišijo, vonj pa se na laseh obdrži še kar nekaj časa.

Celotno ponudbo izdelkov Eterika si lahko ogledaš tukaj.