Tag Archive: Healthy Aging


Is your skin feeling tired, dull, and out of balance? Winter is the best time of year to work on your complexion: UV rays are low, you’re outside less, and if you’re like me – because of the long nights – you are resting more.

I’ve chosen two exfoliating products by Tu’el for the January Product Feature. They both contain Alpha Hydroxy Acids (AHAs) and provide amazing results when used together:

Glyco-A Gel is a 10% Glycolic Acid solution which improves the skin’s appearance and texture. It helps reduce wrinkles, acne scarring, and hyper-pigmentation and improves many other skin conditions.  AHAs weaken the binding properties of the lipids that hold the dead skin cells together, allowing the skin to be exfoliated, exposing live skin cells, and stimulating new cell growth.

Crystal C Serum is a healthy-aging and antioxidant Vitamin C serum that acts as a free radical scavenger, helps reverse and prevent sun damage, and improves skin firmness.

Made with the only stable form of Vitamin C, along with Lactic and Malic Acids, this fabulous serum will change your skin! Vitamin C  is great to use under your sun block for natural extra protection as well.

What’s in Crystal C Serum?

Purified Water, Lactic Acid, Citric Acid, Malic Acid, Green Tea Extract, Dimethyl Isosorbide, Magnesium Ascorbyl Phosphate, Hydroxyethylcellose, Propylene Glycol, Superoxide Dismutase, Panthenol, Sodium Hyaluronate, L-Tyrosine, Sodium Citrate, Tetrasodium EDTA, Phenoxyethanol, Potassium Sorbate. 1 oz.

If you’re new to Star Brows, you may not know about The Product Feature or Rewards yet. To put it simply, 10% of all your product purchases all the time, go toward free Service Enhancements , like Raindrop Therapy, Lash Tint, Chemical Peels, or Star Massage.

When a product is the Monthly Feature however, you’ll get 20% back in Rewards! This month’s feature, Crystal C Serum, is $57 – that means $11 toward a service Enhancement – and Glyco-A Gel, which is $31, gives you $6 in Rewards.

See you at the spa!

Photo: Vintage Vogue

I am so excited to bring you this month’s special Product Feature. (It’s a 2-fer!)  Tu’el’s Cleansing Oils and Herbalizers and the new Travel Pack, which includes the Tu’el cleansing system for A.M. and P.M.,  Hy-Drate,  (both in 1 oz. bottles), a sample of Peeling Cream and a sample of the appropriate evening moisturizer for your skin-type.

These products are a delight to use  because they bring “spa” home to you. I don’t choose to carry products at Star Brows on performance alone. I want to use skincare that inspires me, works, is as close to “natural” as possible, is a good value and is enjoyable to use.

Taking care of your skin is sometimes perceived as drudgery, but personal care can be renewing. It’s simply a matter of perspective. If you are in the former camp, are you open to thinking about skincare in a new way?

Last month we launched Star Brow’s Rewards and I couldn’t keep September’s feature, Youngblood’s Pressed Mineral Compacts, on the shelves! I ended up happily doing  rain checks!

I’m so glad you’re all enjoying the new Rewards perks.  I appreciate all of you!

The beautiful model in this picture is a friend and client,  Amanda De Bello. She brings the customer testimonial for this month’s feature:

“Linda was kind enough to answer many of my questions by simply “trying out” Tu’el products on my face, which ended in a purchase I do not regret.  The Cleansing Oil is such a relief to my skin (it even gently removes makeup!) & I can feel my face literally getting softer each day I use it.  The Herbalizer is like nothing I’ve ever tried before; my skin seems to “drink it up” and the herbs smell so good! I have been known to spend money on high quality, big name products, and honestly just wasn’t getting the results I was happy with. What I realized is that previously I was willing to spend whatever it took to “fix” what damage was done to my skin–and now I am on a preventive path to consistent care and nurturing my skin daily with the entire Tu’el cleansing system. Thank you Star Brows!”

The Product Feature(s) of the month give you Double Rewards. The Cleansing Oil and Herbalizer are each in 4 oz sizes and are $50 for the set. The Travel Pack (seen right)  is $48. That’s $5 in Star Brows Rewards regularly, but ($10 this month).  And who doesn’t love FREE spa services?

And as dear old dad says, “I didn’t just save $10, I MADE $10!”

As many of you know, I won an award for a new treatment called Star Massage which utilizes the Tu’el Hydrophilic Cleansing Oil System.  This link will take you to the YouTube I produced–as well as to Tu’el’s founder Lori Nestori’s YouTube–on the Oil and Herbalizer cleansing system.

See you at the spa!

PUT A SMILE ON YOUR FACE!

In Straighten Up!, Part 1 of Beauty On The Cheap we talked about posture and how standing and sitting up straight strengthens and beautifies.

In this post let’s talk about how smiling and laughing makes us more beautiful inside and out.

Growing up, I heard the words, “Put a smile on your face” often. Who can (or wants to) smile on command? So, when we talk about smiling in this piece, it’s not to conform to or please anyone else.  Yes, a smile looks beautiful to others, but wearing one cheers you up too!

In the beginning, you may have to practice if you’re not used to smiling much, just like getting into the habit of standing up straight. Tyra Banks coined a term called smizing: smiling with your eyes. At the same time you are smiling you need to recall a happy memory, or imagine a beautiful place – while doing so, your thoughts will actually illuminate your eyes.

Speaking of smiling and being happy, how about laughter? I have a funny story:

One time years ago, I was asked to do massage for “Wild Women’s Weekend”. I packed up my massage table and headed to a beautiful island in Minnesota for the weekend. What I encountered was a group of women engaging in riotous laughter the whole weekend from pretty much everyone – except me. I remember thinking; “I want that!”. The sad part is, I realized I didn’t laugh much – at least not so anyone could hear. My laughing muscle was emaciated  from all the years of disuse. Through Simply Noticing and not judging myself harshly, I began to cultivate a vision of becoming a laugher.

So when I got home I decided to begin “practicing” laughter. My family mocked and jeered me at first because my laughter was contrived – it was funny! But after spending a few weeks on choosing to laugh, it began to feel comfortable.

Am I perceived as a funny person today? Probably not, but I can laugh now – and I value joy above all because I know that when I am joyful I am fully present, thankful, breathing and living life to the fullest.

In order to really produce a beautiful and abiding smile, it needs to come from within. Sure, you can turn it on for an acquaintance or the camera – but that is momentary and looks superficial. What I’m talking about is a perpetual glow of peace, joy and contentment on your face that attracts others and makes you more beautiful.

So we must go deeper. Does a house look clean if you just tidy up and dust a few items? No, but if you deep clean with, as mom would say, “warm soapy water” you can feel the clean – it radiates because it is really clean through and through.

I guess what I’m talking about is “soul cleaning”. Take this little quiz and see what may be dulling your countenance and suppressing your smile. Give yourself 1 point for each yes answer:

  • Do you regularly let-go and forgive others when they offend you?
  • Have you wrestled with childhood issues that need clearing?
  • Do you make an effort not to gossip or hold grudges?
  • Do you keep jealousy and comparing yourself to others in check?
  • Do you consistently live according to your values?
  • Have you chosen friends that are good for you?
  • What about thankfulness? Are you thankful for something everyday?

How did you do? 7 is perfect, don’t worry if you’re not quite there – no one is!

And what about joy, happiness, passion and pleasure?

  • Do you have something you are really looking forward to in the next day or two, in the next week, month or year?
  • If there are relationships or situations in your life that are stressfully unresolved, are you taking action steps toward resolution?
  • Are there intimate friends in your life – and do you spend time nurturing these friendships?
  • Have you made your work part of your life, not just a job, and do you bring your best self to it?
  • Hugging others is one of the easiest ways to stay “in touch”. Do you have human touch in your life regularly, daily?
  • Do you have a “big picture” dream? Have you shared it with others?

Sometimes it’s good to reflect and take inventory. 6 is a perfect score, if there is an item or two that you had to really think about, you may want to jot it down to ponder later.

How well do you care for yourself?

  • Do you sleep enough?
  • Drink enough water?
  • Eat healthy most of the time?
  • Exercise regularly?
  • What are your spiritual practices? Do you spend time in prayer and meditation to renew this aspect of your being daily?

5 is perfect – don’t be too hard on yourself. It has taken me 55 years to develop healthy lifestyle habits, and I still fall short – often!

How about bad self-care habits?

  • Do you abstain from smoking and drinking or at least keep these vices to the bare minimum?
  • Do you make a conscious effort not to spend time feeling guilt, shame or regret?
  • Do you know what’s good for you, and do it most of the time?

3 is great, but maybe we should be scoring one another so there is no bias. 😉 We all justify our habits and choices, I know I do – but be honest with yourself, that’s the most important thing.

So raise your hand if you got a 21! Now do 10 “Hail Marys”.

Did you know smiling and laughing required so much work? Well, it doesn’t really – it is actually a state of grace, but living your life so that smiling and laughter are a natural habit will require some “inner house cleaning”, and of course homes don’t stay clean, you need to develop a regular habit of maintenance.

Above all, don’t wait for your circumstances to change to be happy. Happiness is a choice.

“When life gives you lemons, make lemonade!” And remember: “Faut souffrir pour être belle.” “One must suffer to be beautiful.”

See you at the spa!

Tu’el Oil Free Essential Protection SPF 30

An oil-free, lightweight full spectrum sun block especially for oily or impure skin or for those in hot and/or humid climates. 3 oz. $22

SPF 30 can be worn all day, but is especially important when outside for prolonged periods, or near water.

Some of the ingredients include:

Chamomile Extract: Soothing, calming and  assists in healing.

Green Tea Extract: Powerful antioxidant, free radical scavenger and anti irritant.

Aloe Extract: Soothes and protects.

Sodium Hyaluronate: It is the cosmetic grade of Hyaluronic Acid. Extremely humectant, binds up to 1000 times it’s weight in water, supports collagen and elastin in the dermis where wrinkles form.

People are often confused about sunscreen Sun Protection Factor formulations. Here is what is in this one:
  • Octyl Methoxycinnamate – UVB protection, waterproof, reduces the appearance of scars and is an organic compound.
  • Benzophenone 3 – It is an organic compound, broad spectrum protection photosynthesizing short wave UVA  and absorbs rays in the upper UVB, lower UVB range, where primary sundamage – i.e. burning, skin cancer and aging occur.
  • Octyl Salicylate – Adds emollient properties, is an organic compound and absorbs UVB.
  • Titanium Dioxide – Utra Violet physical block found naturally.
  • Avobenzone – Active, “broad spectrum” (this is an important key phrase, watch for it on labels) protection. It’s an organic sunscreen agent that has the ability to absorb ultraviolet light over a wide range of wavelengths.

See you at the spa!

Menopause is the 2nd big hormonal event in a women’s life, and even if you are nowhere near this stage of life, it is NOT too early to prepare. Like everything else, preparation and knowledge about the process of  “your change” will dictate your success in navigating through this natural occurrence.

So do as I say, not as I did. I saw menopause as something natural that I would float through seamlessly – didn’t I have my last baby at home? Super Woman! Not 😉 I mean I got through without a DNC, I let fibroids shrink on their own, I wore sunscreen, got moody, lived through night sweats, fought dryness, etc.

What I did not prepare for was the state of depletion that the declining levels of estrogen left me in. There are supplements to address these changes, but I didn’t see the need at the time. I do now, as a 55-year-old post-menopausal woman…better late than never!

But, I digress…let’s just stick to the skin part of this discussion.

The biggest skin bandit is undoubtedly the sun – which we love! but we must respect its power.

In 2nd position is the process of aging. First of all, can I just mention that I HATE the phrase anti-aging. Is it beneficial to be against aging? We, as women, spend our youth worrying if we are thin enough, pretty enough, sexy enough, toned enough…blah, blah, blah enough already! I like to call it healthy aging instead.

That said, let’s talk about what is going on behind the “skin scenes” in the aging process – and  what we can do to have the best possible outcome.

Decline in estrogen levels are the main culprit. This affects every organ skin of the body, including the skin. The estrogen receptors that carry this magic “women juice” are found most abundantly around the genital area (duh), face and lower limbs.

Dryness and wrinkling in peri and post menopause are the most noticeable effects on the skin and impact all women to some degree. But behind the scenes there are some other body systems that are changing:

  • The skin becomes less capable of storing moisture.
  • Collagen is breaking down.
  • The blood supply to the skin decreases.
  • The sebaceous glands shrink and produce less oil
  • The skin’s deeper fat layers shrink
  • Aging skin thins and becomes paler and more translucent
  • The skin bruises more easily and is generally more sensitive
  • Allergic reactions and body itching may increase
  • Risk of skin cancer, rosacia and other skin disorders increase.

Having fun yet? 🙂

Solutions:

  • Use a full spectrum block from an early age – or now!
  • Use Mineral Makeup , it calms, soothes, protects the skin from environmental factors and provides an SPF factor
  • Drink plenty of water
  • Don’t smoke
  • Exercise regularly
  • Start a preventative skin care regime, supervised by a skincare professional that addresses your skin type and issues.
  • Eat healthy raw foods regularly. Low-gylcemic index foods, will increase dermal hydration.
  • Consider supplements: especially a multiple vitamin, minerals and essential fatty acids like Omega 3
  • Use exfoilliants and/or get chemical peels regularly to increase cell turnover.
  • Moisturize using a formulation with hyaluronic acid
  • Practice regular/daily habits of elimination.
  • Develop stress management resources and a support system. Emotions create toxins that affect the skin.

The skin is a living, breathing organ of elimination. It also serves as a  protective covering and barrier – what works to keep it fit and healthy is constantly changing.

You have completely new skin cells every couple of months. Those new cells were grown in an ever-changing body, depending on: what you eat, drink, your skincare regime, hormones, the weather,  – even your thoughts and moods.

Note: When I do brow maintenance I also consult with my clients about the state of their skin, keeping them in touch with the changes the skin is going through, and how to best facilitate healthy, beautiful skin at any age.

See you at the spa!

“Outward beauty is a reflection of inner health. Radiant glowing skin is a sign of vibrant inner health.”
From a professional perspective, I am very interested in the health and beauty of the skin. I also want to provide you with resources that can accomplish this goal.
On a personal note, I am post – menopausal and am always looking for ways to ramp up my skin’s health–and beauty.
So, from the Isles of Beauty, I bring you: Barlean’s Essential Woman. I got mine locally at Grande Foods on Grand Avenue in AG (right next door to me!).
This formulation contains: seeds of botanical flowers such as evening primrose and flax, as well as special plant phytonutirents and essential fatty acids, including alpha linoleic acid (Omega-3) and linolenic acid (Omega-6). These ingredients are  all recognized for their beautifying and balancing qualities.
The company states that the Essential Woman is the first product of it’s kind to combine a full complement of therapeutically beneficial nutrients targeted for the special and changing needs of a woman. If you decide to purchase the Essential Woman, be sure to let me know what you think!
See you at the spa!

I have a part time position at a local studio teaching  3-6 year olds girls to dance. The other day in class one of the little girls was looking very sad, and almost in tears. When I asked her what was wrong she said;

“I am afraid.” — Of what? I asked. “Of doing it wrong.” she whispered.

Girls, I asked the whole class – what happens in dance class if you make a mistake? “Keep trying” they all answered. And are mistakes bad? I asked.

“NO!” they all shouted. And why are we taking a dance class? I continued. “To learn” they chirped, squirming and giggling.

As you can tell, we’ve had these conversations in class before 😉

So to you I say the same thing I did to the littles dancing girls: mistakes are just what happens when you are learning – and we are ALL learning.

What is a gremlin? How do you tame him? Do I have a gremlin? These and more questions are answered in one of my favorite books called Taming Your Gremlin (TYG) by Rick Carlson. In the last two posts I covered step 1 & 2 of the three step process for TYG: Simply Noticing and Choosing and Playing with Options .

Today is the last step, it’s called: Being in Process – the dictionary.com definition of process is: A systematic series of actions directed to some end.

So, a process involves a series of actions/choices – not just one. And the “end” refers to the desired outcome of an action.

Let’s use the example from Part 2 of the TYG series; Linda’s Lenten Adventures, aka — my recent withdrawal process from 3 toxic substances ;)):

I deliberately am not disclosing the “substances” because I want you to fill in your own blanks on this one, and because that part of it is my personal business.

Content is also interchangeable. You may struggle with lying, stealing, gossiping, abuse, laziness – it makes no difference.

The truth is I live in process. I am also continuing to simply notice how I am doing, what I’m feeling, and what I’m thinking about. Breathing instead of stuffing feelings and thoughts down is harder in some ways. But the end game is much more rewarding. The fruit of the Spirit is self control.

I am choosing and playing with options as well to bring about the results I want, which are: good health, no guilt, more energy, self discipline, enlightenment and clarity.The whole process of TYG is a circle. It is the breath by breath process of noticing, choosing and processing. I am open to feeling and being with “what is showing up”. I can discover moment to moment what I need, and make conscious instead of automatic choices. I can participate in the process of creating the life I really want, the life “the natural me” was meant to live.

What being in process is:

  • It is a dance. A dance that is performed as a solo, with guest artists showing up. It is a dance you are choreographing, a dance the Lord Almighty created you to do. It is an improvisational piece that is a response to the music of life. It is meant to be easy, flow from your depths. You did this dance when you were a child, and it was a joy. You can do it again, I know you can.
  • The “neutral observer” or non-judgmental response, to how the choices you are making in any given circumstance are working for you, and based on that assessment, choosing and playing  with new options.
  • Giving yourself permission to be a learner!
  • Realizing that the path of your life is followed step by step, breath by breath and choice by choice.
  • Being aware in each moment to the fact that you can change your response to any situation as many times as you need to in order to get the results you want.
  • Seeing that there are really no mistakes, just choices that didn’t yield the results you wanted.

What being in process is not:

  • It’s not about regret, guilt or shame.
  • It isn’t about should’ve, would’ve, or could’ve.
  • There doesn’t have to be a solution right now to everything that happens. Ambiguity is OK to live with.
  • It is not your job to control anyone or anything. You are only responsible for yourself and your choices.

Ready to tame your own gremlin? May the peace of God that passes all understanding guard your hearts & minds.

See you at the spa!

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