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November 15, 2017

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How to Rescue Hangover Skin

If you’ve ever said “yes” to a few too many drinks on a night out, you know exactly what we mean by “hangover skin”. Puffy eyes, papery skin, enlarged pores, a sallow complexion - hangovers are not pretty!

Obviously the best way to avoid hangover skin is to abstain from alcoholic beverages, or at least to imbibe moderately. But if the damage is already done, pop some Ibuprofen and follow these tips for preventing and curing hangover skin.

How Alcohol Affects Your Skin

Alcohol is a diuretic, meaning that it pulls moisture out of the body. When you’re imbibing, you’re less likely to drink water along with your alcoholic beverages. The result? Total dehydration.

Unfortunately, dehydration means less-than-stellar skin. A hangover means that your skin is extra dry and wrinkles become more visible.  Alcohol also dilates the blood vessels, which causes your eyes to look red and puffy and your face bloated.

Before Bed...

Drink Water!

Force yourself to drink at least a half liter of water before you go to bed. Alcohol is extremely dehydrating, so restore lost moisture from the inside out by drinking water or an electrolyte beverage before bed.

Remove Your Makeup

Commit to always washing your face before you go to bed, no matter how many drinks you’ve had! Free radicals cling to makeup, and sleeping in your makeup causes unnecessary overnight exposure. Free radicals cause your skin’s collagen to break down, resulting in sagging, aging skin. Sleeping in makeup can also cause clogged pores, which lead to breakouts. We say no thanks to that!

Keep a pack of makeup remover wipes on your nightstand for evenings when you’re too tired to wash your face.

Apply Moisturizer

Moisturizing your face will help to rehydrate your skin while you sleep and create a barrier so your face doesn’t lose any more precious moisture overnight. Use a soothing night cream to fight alcohol-induced inflammation and redness. You may still be dehydrated in the morning, but at least your skin won’t be!

The Next Day...

Drink More Water!

Really! While you may only want coffee or hair of the dog, drinking water is the quickest way to recover from a hangover. For extra fast hydration, try watermelon or coconut water, both of which are loaded with hydrating electrolytes.

Exfoliate

Remove dry, alcohol-damaged skin cells by gently exfoliating in the morning. Look for an exfoliant formulated with lactic acid or fruit acids to exfoliate without drying out skin.

Apply a Moisturizing Mask

Restore lost moisture with a nutrient-dense sheet mask. Try our Pomegranate Crush Illuminating Mask to energize sallow, dull skin. Kick back, sip on some coconut water, and enjoy your favorite Netflix show while our mask restores your glowing complexion.

Rescue Puffy Eyes

You may be able to conceal your hangover skin with some foundation and blush, but there’s no hiding puffy hangover eyes. To repair late night damage, apply our Lost Baggage Under Eye Emergency Repair Mask. With a hydrating boost of hyaluronic acid, this eye mask will send bags, wrinkles, and dark circles packing.

For an extra dose of brightness, apply a small amount of highlighter on the inner corner of your eyes.

What’s your favorite hangover cure? Let us know in the comments!

Written by: Colleen Welsch

November 15, 2017

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10 Skin Care Resolutions for 2018

When making New Year’s resolutions, working out and eating right are probably at the top of your list. But this year, don’t neglect the health of your skin! Adopt these skin care habits for beautiful, glowing skin in 2018.

  1. Wash Your Face Before Bed

You’ve heard this a million times, but washing your face before bed really is the #1 rule of skincare. When left overnight, makeup, dirt, and debris can cause breakouts and enlarged pores. Plus, skipping your nightly moisturizer and eye cream can cause dry skin and contribute to premature aging.

Finding it hard to remove your makeup before bed? Try washing your face as soon as you get home instead of waiting for bedtime. Or, try keeping makeup wipes next to your bed for nights when you’re too tired to cleanse your face. No excuses!

  1. Wear Sunscreen Every Single Day

Add a sunscreen to your daily beauty routine - even if the sun isn’t shining. Sunscreen is vital for protecting skin from the UV radiation that causes premature aging and skin cancer.

Find sunscreen too greasy? Look for a brand with phrases like “non-greasy” or “sheer” on the label, with an SPF of at least 30.

And don’t forget your hands! Like your face, hands are constantly exposed to UV light. Add a hand cream with SPF to your routine to ensure youthful hands for years to come.

  1. Get Enough Sleep

The concept of “beauty sleep” is completely valid! Bedtime is when our skin repairs itself. Without an adequate amount of sleep, our skin suffers. Aim for at least seven to eight hours of sleep each night.

  1. Change Your Pillowcase

Did you know that you should be changing your pillowcase twice per week? Bacteria on your pillowcase can lead to breakouts and irritation. For clearer skin, buy an extra set of pillowcases and swap them out every couple of days.

  1. Don’t Neglect Your Neck and Decolletage

When applying serums and sunscreens, do you stop at your jawline? Always make sure to apply your facial products onto your neck to keep its delicate skin moisturized and youthful.

At the very least, make sure to apply sunscreen on your neck and decolletage daily to prevent wrinkles, sagging, and age spots. Your future self with thank you!

  1. Wash Your Makeup Brushes

Like your pillowcase, your makeup brushes harbor pimple-causing bacteria. Wash makeup brushes with lukewarm water and dishwashing soap, rinse well, and allow to dry on a clean, folded towel. In a pinch, you can also sanitize them with an antibacterial spray. Make a habit out of cleaning your makeup brushes weekly to prevent breakouts.

  1. Drink More Water

Drinking water has many health benefits beyond skincare, but its ability to moisturize skin from the inside out is definitely a plus. Keep a reusable water bottle with you at all times so there’s no excuses not to sip throughout the day.

  1. Apply Sheet Masks

Sheet masks provide concentrated amounts of glow-boosting serums. In fact, just one BioRepublic mask contains the equivalent of half a bottle of skin revitalizing serum! Add a sheet mask to your weekly routine for beautiful skin in the new year.

  1. Take Your Vitamins

If you don’t take one already, adding a daily multivitamin to your routine will result in more energy, glowing skin, and better overall health.

  1. Stop Touching Your Face

We know: the urge to pop a zit can be absolutely overwhelming. However, any time you touch your face, you bring pimple-causing dirt and bacteria to the skin.

Having trouble remembering? Try putting Post-it note reminders in your bathroom, car, or anywhere else you’re tempted to squeeze.

What are your 2018 beauty resolutions? Let us know in the comments!

Written by: Colleen Welsch

November 15, 2017

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How to Practice Self Care During the Holidays

It’s easy to get carried away and over-commit oneself during the holiday season. Between attending parties, shopping for gifts, and visiting with family, we can feel stressed out. To relieve holiday-induced tension, take time each day to practice self care.

What is self care? Self care is a deliberate activity done to improve one’s health, whether physical, mental, or emotional. Taking care of yourself is not selfish. Being relaxed and healthy will allow you to be more present with loved ones during the holidays, and have the energy to accomplish all your holiday-related tasks.

Not sure where to start? Follow our tips for practicing self care during the holidays.

  1. Make Mornings Count

Make a little bit of extra time for yourself in the morning. Wake up 15 minutes earlier and practice a favorite activity, whether it be reading, yoga, or simply enjoying a cup of hot coffee. Practicing self care in the morning will help you to prioritize yourself and start your day with intention.

  1. Don’t Skip Your Vegetables

By all means, indulge in your favorite holiday treats. But the other 80% of the time, make sure you’re eating a healthy, balanced diet with plenty of nutrient-dense foods. Keeping your diet in check will provide you with more energy for holiday activities, maintain your glowing skin, and help you to sleep better.

  1. Schedule a Mini Spa Session

Perhaps you don’t have time for a spa night, but that doesn’t mean you need to forego beauty treatments altogether. Kick back and unwind for 20 minutes with BioRepublic’s Cucumber Breeze Soothing Sheet Mask and some relaxing music. Afterwards, both your face and your spirit will feel rejuvenated.

  1. Just Breathe

This tip costs nothing and takes almost no time at all! Throughout the day, take deep, relaxing breaths to relieve tension and stress.

  1. Write in a Journal

Interactions with family and friends during the holidays often mean heightened emotions. To relieve pressure, practice free writing. Set a timer for 30 minutes and write whatever comes to mind during that time period. Don’t worry about what you write, just enjoy the process of letting go. You’ll be amazed at how much better you feel.

  1. Prioritize Your Schedule

To prevent feeling overwhelmed, prioritize tasks that are most important to you. For example, if you value family above everything else, you may need to skip a friend’s holiday party to make cookies for your family. If you’re short on time, you’ll be ensuring that you’re giving your energy to a worthy cause.

  1. Relinquish Expectations

We all dream of having a magical season - the perfect tree, the perfect party, the perfect holiday. However, when things don’t go according to plan, we become disappointed. Instead of creating unrealistic expectations, live in the moment and practice gratitude. You’ll find that you’ll enjoy your holidays a lot more, even if they don’t turn out exactly as you have planned. 

  1. Have a Laugh

Laughter really is the best medicine. Laughing is proven to relieve tension and improve your mood. Watch a funny movie, catch a comedy show, or play a silly game with friends.

  1. Spend Time Outdoors

Even if it’s cold outside, bundle up and go for a walk. Even a brief walk can improve mental energy, relieve stress, and increase creativity.

  1. Get Enough Zzz’s

You can’t take care of others if you’re burned out or sick. To keep up your energy levels and prevent a dreaded winter cold, make sure to get at least 7 hours of sleep each night. If you can’t stick to your normal sleeping patterns, try to make up lost sleep with afternoon naps. Even a 20 minute nap will improve your focus and energy levels.

How do you practice self care during the holidays? Let us know in the comments!

Written by: Colleen Welsch

November 14, 2017

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The Best Foods for Healthy Skin

A healthy diet is important for maintaining not only your waistline, but your vital organs like your heart and liver. Your diet also affects your largest organ - your skin.

 

Certain foods are potent sources of vitamins and minerals that keep skin soft and smooth while protecting against damaging free radicals. Incorporate these foods into your diet for healthy, glowing skin from the inside out. In the case of these skin-healthy foods, you really are what you eat.

 

  1. Fish

 

Fatty fish like salmon, mackerel, sardines, and anchovies are loaded with healthy omega-3 fatty acids that fight dryness and keep skin healthy. Omega-3 fatty acids are necessary for keeping skin supple and moisturized. Unfortunately, most people don’t get enough omega-3 fats into their diet.

 

Fatty fish are also an amazing source of vitamin E, a powerful antioxidant that protects skin against free radicals in the environment.

 

Fish are also a great source of protein. Protein is important for the production of collagen and elastin, both of which keep skin taut and firm.

 

  1. Avocados

 

Like fatty fish, avocados are high in omega-3 fatty acids and vitamin E that moisturize the skin and protect against free radicals.

 

Avocados are also an important source of vitamin C, which increases vitamin E’s effectiveness. Like vitamin E, vitamin C is an antioxidant that maintains skin’s structural integrity. Vitamin C is also crucial to the production of collagen, which keeps skin supple and youthful.

 

  1. Tomatoes

 

Research shows that tomatoes may provide protection from UV rays. According to a 2008 UK study, people who ate 5 tablespoons of tomato paste daily had 33% more protection against sunburn compared to a control group. Tomatoes’ high lycopene content is to thank for its skin-protecting effects. Just be aware - eating tomatoes is not a substitute for good, old-fashioned sunscreen!

 

  1. Kale

 

Kale is rich in lutein and zeaxanthin, two powerful antioxidants. According research published in Clinics of Dermatology, these antioxidants can actually neutralize any UV rays that get through your sunscreen. Plus, kale is a great source of skin-loving vitamins C and A.

 

  1. Green Tea

 

Green tea is rich in catechins, a family of powerful antioxidants. According to researchers at Case Western Reserve University, green tea’s antioxidants may reduce the risk of developing skin cancer.

 

Not only do catechins protect against free radicals, but they also contribute to a smoother complexion with less redness.

 

  1. Sunflower Seeds

 

Believe it or not, this delicious snack is rich in many nutrients crucial to skin health. One ounce of sunflower seeds contains 32% of the daily recommended value for selenium, an essential mineral that protects cells from damage and reduces inflammation.

 

Sunflower seeds are also a great source of linoleic acid, an omega-6 fatty acid that prevents thinning skin and keeps skin moisturized.

 

Furthermore, sunflower seeds provide significant amounts of vitamin E and protein, both of which are important for healthy skin.

 

  1. Red Wine

 

Australian researchers found that adults who drink moderate amounts of red wine are 28% less likely to develop actinic keratoses (a type of skin lesion from sun damage) than adults who do not imbibe red wine. This is because red wine contains resveratrol, an antioxidant credited with many health benefits including slowing the aging of skin.

 

However, it’s important to note that drinking red wine (or any alcohol) in excess can have negative effects on the skin. To maximize health benefits without overdoing it, stick to only drinking one glass of red wine per day.

 

  1. Sweet Potatoes

 

Sweet potatoes are commonly touted as a superfood - and for good reason. Sweet potatoes are rich in beta-carotene, an antioxidant that protects against sun damage. Plus, beta-carotene contributes to a more beautiful complexion. According to a 2011 UK study, people who eat beta-carotene had complexions with yellow undertones, which was rated by others as looking more healthy.

 

  1. Dark Chocolate

 

Cocoa’s powerful flavanols have been shown to improve skin’s elasticity and protect against free radicals. As if we needed another reason to eat chocolate!

 

To maximize the benefits, choose a dark chocolate with at least 70% cacao and stick to a 1 oz portion size.



How will you be incorporating these foods into your diet? Did your favorite food make our list? Let us know in the comments.

Written by: Colleen Welsch

November 14, 2017

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Winter Skin Care Tips

There’s no doubt about it: winter is coming. And in some places, it’s already here!

While we love holiday festivities and cozying up by the fire, winter is a difficult time for your skin. Cold air, low humidity, and indoor heating zap moisture from your face, damaging skin’s natural protective barrier. Your skin becomes less able to repair itself, leading to chronically dry, dull, and itchy skin. If left untreated, skin can even begin to crack and flake.

Want dewy, moisturized skin this winter? Follow these tips for glowing, luminous skin all season long.  

  1. Skip the Hot Water

Hot showers and baths feel amazing during the cold winter months. However, hot water can actually strip the skin of its natural protective oils, causing further dryness.

Instead, wash your face with gentle, lukewarm water to maintain moisture.

  1. Moisturize Damp Skin

Always moisturize immediately after washing your face, while skin is still damp. You have about a three minute window to apply lotions and serums after cleansing before skin starts to dry out.

For best results, keep the bathroom door closed to lock in moisture after stepping out of the shower.

  1. Adjust Your Product Lineup

Those with naturally dry skin should try an oil-based moisturizer in the winter months. Oil-based moisturizers create a protective barrier on your skin, helping your skin to retain as much moisture as possible.

Have oily skin? Opt for a light, oil-free lotion with SPF protection during the day and retinoid serums at night.

  1. Don’t Forget Sunscreen

Believe it or not, UV rays are just as powerful in the winter as they are in the summer. Be sure to apply sunblock to exposed skin any time you leave the house to prevent premature aging and skin cancer.

  1. Invest in a Humidifier

Your furnace may make your home feel nice and cozy, but heating systems dry out your home’s air, pulling moisture from your skin. Invest in a humidifier to add some moisture back into the air. We recommend putting your humidifier in the bedroom to keep your skin quenched while you get your beauty sleep.

  1. Hydrate from the Inside Out

Just because you’re not overheated during the winter doesn’t mean you’re not dehydrated. Be sure to sip on water throughout the day to keep skin moisturized from the inside out.

Looking for something a little warmer? Hot tea is a great alternative for getting more H20 in your day. We love green tea for its skin-boosting antioxidants.

  1. Exfoliate - Gently!

Gentle exfoliation will brighten your skin and allow moisturizers to better penetrate into the skin. However, harsh face peels and scrubs will only irritate dry winter skin. Instead, try a gentler formula made with lactic acid or fruit acids, and apply no more than twice per week. 

  1. Up Your Face Mask Game

Sheet masks can provide much-needed extra moisture and nutrients to the skin during the dry winter months. Try Aloe Rescue Revitalizing Sheet Mask, which is formulated to sooth dry, red, and chapped winter skin. For best results, use a moisturizing face mask twice per week.

How do you prevent dry skin in the winter? Let us know in the comments!

Written by: Colleen Welsch

September 21, 2017

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10 Tips for Oily Skin

If you have oily skin, you know that overactive oil glands can lead to a whole host of skin issues, including excess shine, blackheads, whiteheads, enlarged pores, and acne. Genetics play a huge role in the oiliness of your skin, but a number of other controllable factors influence your skin’s shine factor. It may seem counterintuitive, but the key to keeping excess oil under control is to keep your oily skin moisturized with healthy, nourishing ingredients that keep pores clean. Why? Because drying out your skin will only lead to your oil glands working harder to moisturize your face. Follow these tips to get your oil production under control and restore balance to your skin.

Tips for Oily Skin

  1. Commit to a Cleansing Routine

Oily skin is more likely to attract dirt and pollution, so it’s important to keep your skin clean to prevent clogged pores and acne. Wash your face once in the morning and once in the evening - any more will dry out your skin.

  1. Exfoliate Weekly

Be careful not to over-exfoliate. Like over-cleansing, this will actually lead to more oil production. Avoid rough physical exfoliants (like apricot scrubs) as these can cause microtears in the skin, leading to premature aging. Instead, try a chemical exfoliant, which will remove dead skin without damaging the healthy, delicate layers underneath.

  1. Apply a Face Mask on the Cutting Edge of Science

Apply a face mask designed to target oily skin after exfoliating each week. Although clay masks are rather effective for absorbing excess oil, new scientific evidence suggests that a sheet mask containing green tea extract can greatly reduce skin’s oiliness. One study found that topical green tea can cut down on sebum production by 70%! Additionally, green tea can protect the skin against inflammation, including reactions to the types of bacteria that cause acne. If you suffer from excessively oily skin or acne, try our Green Tea Detox Purifying Sheet Mask to balance and calm your skin.

  1. Try Vitamin A

Topical vitamin A in the form of a retinoid promotes skin cell turnover which is helpful for all skin types, but can be especially beneficial for those with oily skin. To get started, select and over-the-counter retinoid and apply before bed twice per week, eventually working your way up to nightly applications. Too much too soon can cause skin irritation.

  1. Always Moisturize!

We can’t reiterate this enough: over-drying oily skin will only lead to more oil production. Moisturize each time you wash your face with an oil-free, non-comedogenic moisturizer to keep your skin supple and pores clear.

  1. Choose the Right Sunscreen

Many people with oily skin skip sunscreen for fear that it will make their skin look more shiny. The key is to choose the right kind of sunscreen to keep your skin protected from UV rays while looking matte. Try a gel sunscreen or a mineral-based sunblock, both of which will keep your skin from getting too shiny.

  1. Time to Prime

If you find that your forehead is turning into an oil slick by the end of the day, try applying a silicone-based mattifying primer before applying makeup. A mattifying primer will absorb excess oil and prevent your makeup from slipping off of your face. Even if you don’t wear foundation, a primer will keep your skin matte throughout the day.

  1. Find a Foundation that Works

Mineral foundation tends to work better on oily skin types as the powder absorbs excess oil. The recent trend towards matte makeup has also led towards a number of matte liquid foundations on the market, all of which will work great for oily skin.

  1. Ready, Set!

If you prefer non-matte liquid foundation, always set your look with a matte translucent powder. This will absorb extra moisture from the foundation and mattify your look. For best results, tap powder onto skin with a makeup sponge, concentrating on the forehead and nose, which tend to get the most shiny. Remove any excess powder with a large, soft brush.

  1. Blotting Keeps Oil at Bay

Keep a pack of oil blotting sheets in your bag for soaking up extra shine when you’re on the go. In a pinch, you can also use a disposable toilet seat cover to absorb excess oil. Kind of gross, but it works.

It can be frustrating to deal with oily skin. But on the plus side, oily skin tends to be more resistant to aging because sebum locks in skin’s nature moisture and provides a barrier against harmful UV rays and pollution. There’s lots of ways to keep excess shine under control. However, if you follow these tips and you’re still struggling with excessively oily skin and acne, visit a dermatologist for further treatment.

 

"Written by Colleen Welsch"

September 21, 2017

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The Plant of Immortality: 9 Surprising Benefits of Aloe Vera

If you think that aloe is only useful for soothing sunburns - think again! The green succulent plant has way more benefits for you skin and health than reversing the effects of a long day in the sun. People have been using aloe for an ingredient for skin care and treatments for thousands of years. In fact, Egyptians called aloe the “plant of immortality” and Cleopatra is said to have used aloe vera in her skin care routine. If it’s good enough for Cleopatra, it’s good enough for us!

 

 

 

The Many Uses of Aloe Vera

  1. As a moisturizer for any skin type

Aloe Vera is one of those few ingredients that works as a moisturizer for both dry and oily skin types. Aloe creates a barrier to lock in moisture on dry skin, but it’s also great for oily skin because it moisturizes without leaving any sheen.

  1. As an anti-aging treatment

As skin ages, elasticity and collagen production begin to decline. Aloe contains vitamin C and E, both of which promote skin elasticity and collagen production.

  1. To calm skin redness and blotchiness

Aloe contains an enzyme called bradykinase which reduces redness associated with burns, acne, and rosacea. Aloe also reduces regular, everyday skin blotchiness. Apply a thin layer in the evening before your serums and moisturizer, and wake up to a more even skintone.

  1. As a makeup remover

Aloe makes an effective and gentle makeup remover that cleanses and moisturizes at the same time. Just add pure aloe vera gel to a cotton ball or makeup remover pad and wipe away makeup and dirt.

  1. As an acne treatment

Aloe has a lot of properties that make it great for treating acne. The plant contains the hormones auxin and gibberellin, both of which reduce inflammation and promote healing with less scarring. Aloe is also antibacterial, and can kill the bacteria that causes zits. Lastly, aloe has naturally occurring salicylic acid which can unclog blocked pores and clear blackheads.

  1. Treats burns

Aloe vera ointment was the first treatment approved for burns by the FDA in 1959. And not just sunburns! Aloe can speed the healing of first- and second-degree burns.

  1. As a mouthwash

When used as a mouth rinse, aloe vera is just as effective as traditional mouthwashes in reducing dental plaque and killing harmful mouth bacteria.

  1. As a canker sore treatment

Aloe vera can also be used to treat canker sores - ulcers that some people get on the inside of their lips and gums. One study showed that an aloe vera patch not only reduced the size of the canker sore, but also reduced the pain associated with the sore.

  1. As a shaving cream

Aloe vera gel can be used as a shaving cream, with its moisturizing properties helping to prevent razor burn. Plus, since aloe promotes healing and is antibacterial, it can sterilize and heal any nicks or cuts.

If you’re interested in trying aloe vera for yourself, know that aloe gel directly from the plant works best. If that’s not feasible for you, try any product made of pureed organic aloe plant (rather than the technicolor gel you commonly find at surf shops). Or, look for skin care products that incorporate aloe as one of the active ingredients like Biorepublic’s Aloe Rescue Revitalizing Sheet Mask. Made with natural aloe vera extract and other soothing ingredients, this sheet mask is perfect for recovering for the sun or adding a little extra moisture to your skin.

What’s your favorite use for aloe vera? Let us know in the comments!

 

"Written by Colleen Welsch"