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For a gentle peel to treat fine lines and wrinkles and rid the face of dead skin cells, Pizzano recommends papaya. The fruit contains an enzyme called papain, which has natural exfoliating properties. Papaya can be crushed and applied to the face as a mask, or combined with other ingredients like honey or yogurt for added moisturization benefits. If you’d rather purchase a mask than concoct your own, Bodhi carries the Naturopathica line of skincare products. Pizzano recommends the Environmental Defense Mask, which contains cherry puree and other productive ingredients like pomegranate, tomato, and red wine extracts.
While there are many options for at-home face care, there are some treatments that are better left to the professionals. Moley feels strongly that no home product will deliver the results of a microdermabrasion appointment, during which fine crystals are sprayed on the face, removing dead skin cells and sucking them up. She’s even wary about the typical microderm procedure, which she describes as “sandblasting,” because the product flies uncontrollably and can be ingested by the client and the practitioner during the treatment. River Rock provides a gentle microdermabrasion service that uses a fine rotating file to slough off the outer skin layers.
Likewise, Pizzano recommends exercising caution when attempting any sort of peel at home. If certain products are left on too long, they can cause burning, redness, and other undesirable consequences. To make the most of a peel, she’s a proponent of scheduling one at a spa, where professionals use higher concentration products for maximum effect and where you’ll be monitored for comfort and safety at all times. Remember to maximize the potential of all spa services with the recommended follow-up care and by engaging in a regular routine of cleansing, exfoliating, and protecting skin with sunscreen. Harari recommends an organic sunscreen made with zinc oxide or a mineral powder foundation that contains an SPF. Check your local spa’s boutique for products like these or ask your practitioner to recommend their favorite.
Keeping salon costs at bay can be difficult if you’re coloring your hair or sticking to the prescribed visit every six weeks. Gray or natural color can begin to show through colored hair in a matter of weeks, and damage at the ends of the hair can quickly move up locks if it’s not snipped off in time. Maintaining your hair’s condition is the best way to prolong the time between salon visits.
Joshua Boos of Moxie Salon & Beauty Hub in Beacon says the first thing to do to extend a color treatment is to stop shampooing on a daily basis. “People have this thing that have to wash their hair everyday,” he says. What you’re aiming for is a clean, healthy scalp that will produce healthy hair. Shampoos, especially those that contain SLS, can strip the hair of oils and natural moisture. Find a shampoo that’s SLS-free and try washing every other day. “Sulfate-free shampoos don’t lather, and a lot of people want lather and they feel they’re not getting a good cleansing [without it],” Boos says. “But actually that would prolong the color, and it is actually cleansing.” He also advises clients to switch to a natural bristle brush, which distributes oils from the scalp through the hair.
To condition hair, Michael Pettine of Salone Bianco in Newburgh says a simple concoction of an avocado and half a cup of olive oil in a food processor will create a natural alternative to the bottled remedies on the shelves. Once a month, spread the mixture throughout the hair and sit under a hood dryer (if one is available) or place a plastic bag around the hair and wrap a towel over the top to keep the heat in. The fact that the treatment uses all-natural ingredients allows the hair to absorb it better, says Pettine.
When it comes to coloring, Boos thinks most people can get away with a single-process color at home under the guidance of a stylist (he says clients in the past have had luck with Second Nature by Clairol). “Clear communication with the stylist should be key,” he says. “People need assistance. That color you’re seeing with a box nine times out of ten is not going to happen. The professional has got to be willing to help with you.” There is a range of factors that are taken into consideration with professional coloring services, like the different applications of color at the scalp, the mid shaft, and the ends of the hair. Boos advises that lemon juice, highlighting tonics, and products like Sun In be avoided, due to their damaging effects.