Skin that glows and is free of blemishes is basically a sign of consistent healthy habits, a healthy gut, and a balanced mental state.
To maintain clear healthy skin is not necessarily a result of things or products we use occasionally but more the things we do, and the products we use, consistently every single day and night... because we are worth it.
We love Marie Forleo's take on being consistently consistent as we navigate not just healthy skin but self-care across all aspects of our life.
HYDRATE, HYDRATE, HYDRATE
To drink water is important because water is essential for whole body health and important for skin specifically. One major reason is natural water loss from the skin. In dermatology, this is called trans epidermal water loss (TEWL).
Water is constantly evaporating into air and even if you are living in a humid climate, perspiration of the skin increases dryness. Evaporation is even faster if you live in dry, arid, polluted environments and even more so, in airplanes and post-workouts.
Why is this important? The water reserves in your body are always used first for life-essential metabolic activities. If you are not drinking enough water, not only does your body struggle to function properly, but your skin also takes a back seat. It ends up dehydrated and less plump because intra-cellular hydration is an important component that gives skin its volume. With less water for the body to detoxify, excrete, and cleanse, the more skin looks dull and suffers more, like your internal organs.
A BRIEF THEORY OF THE BRAIN + GUT + SKIN AXIS
A lot of people know that the skin is the largest organ, yet a lot of people don’t think of the skin as an essential living organ that is constantly renewing itself every single day; they just think it’s an outer covering that’s there to protect them, to keep everything out. Another fun fact is that the skin plays a significant role as part of the complex immune system housing an estimated twenty billion T cells which control skin microbes and communicate with the rest of the immune system (lymphatic, respiratory, lymphocytes, spleen, and the gut) to distribute the cells to fight against attacks on the immune system. Which is why, here at KOKOBÉRNA, our holistic approach doesn’t separate but inextricably links the brain + gut + skin axis as a vehicle to realize one's beauty + wisdom + well-being™. As scientific research catches up and uncovers the correlations between the brain (hormonal balance and emotional states) + gut microbiota (and the role of adequate nutrition) + systemic skin neuro-sensory response, the imbalance of these overlapping mechanisms oftentimes associated with psoriasis, hormonal acne, depression, hot flashes, mood swings, and anxiety will be things of the past so we all can live longer, healthy lives.
LET’S START WITH THE SKIN
A toner does not add water to the skin. Hyaluronic acid does not add water to the skin. Neither does niacinamide nor vitamin C nor retinol nor any trendy ingredient. The bottom line is that skin gets its water from “internal sources” – what we eat and drink. What a high-quality toner, serum, or moisturizer does is hold on to that water longer. So, you need to drink water AND use high-quality therapeutic skincare products for healthy, glowing skin. With this support, the neuro-sensory connection to the brain allows the skin barrier to remain calm, continuously renew itself, efficiently get rid of dead skin cells (includes buildup of pollutants, free radicals, residual makeup, and sunscreen not properly removed), and hold on to moisture longer.
From a product perspective we would recommend specifically for healthy glowing skin and to even the complexion: DIVINE ORIGIN™ Cleansing Milk, DIVINE ORIGIN™ Exfoliating Toner, DIVINE ORIGIN™ Radiance Mist, and our beloved HEALER’S GOLD™ Face Oil.
DIVINE ORIGIN™ Cleansing Milk is a daily exfoliating cleanser that gives you both the chemical exfoliation and the hydration your skin needs. It has a lot of humectants (water-binding ingredients) such as South African Cape Aloe, non-GMO Vegetable Glycerin, and organic fruit enzymes. You know, enzymes function as catalysts in the cleansing process attaching themselves to other ingredients to accelerate breakdown of dirt, grime, sticky makeup, pollutants, and to get rid of all the congestion on the skin. It also has organic willow bark extract, which is a herbal source of salicylic beta-hydroxy acid, a surprisingly gentle oil-soluble exfoliant that increases the shedding of dead skin cells, minimizes the appearance of pigmentation spots, and improves blocked or clogged pores. The aloe-based cleanser also has a lot of certified organic marula seed oil and rose flower oil which helps to detoxify your skin and provide intense nourishment throughout the cleansing process. Another wonderful thing is that the cleansing milk doesn’t contain detergents, sulfates, or alcohol that “strip” the skin and instead supports the skin’s hydrolipidic barrier keeping the pH level intact which is why this does well for most skin including oily, acneic, and sensitive skin types.
The other product I really love is the DIVINE ORIGIN™ Exfoliating Toner. What this toner does is that it corrects dark spot issues by taking off hard to remove dead skin cells, increasing cell turnover, stimulating collagen production, minimizing the appearance of razor bumps and breakouts, and evening out the complexion. Certified organic skin-beautifying herbs such as mallow, lady’s mantle, and cowslip are excellent alternatives to licorice and endocrine-disrupting hydroquinone found in most skin-brightening products marketed to people of Asian, African, Caribbean, and Middle Eastern heritage with pigmented skin issues. To support the skin’s detoxification pathways, we macerate an herbal blend of certified organic skin-protective herbs to include burdock, dandelion, and echinacea. And lastly, a premium cocktail of restorative plant-based alpha+beta+poly-hydroxy acids in a nocturnal essence that retextures and smooths the skin while you sleep:
Glycolic acid derived from organic sugarcane penetrates deeply and stimulates fibroblast cells to aid in collagen production.
Lactic acid keeps the skin soft and acts like Pac Man on the surface of the skin, gently eating old glue between cells on the skin’s surface. This is especially important for maturing skin that is resistant to exfoliation.
Mandelic acid derived from almonds is antibacterial without harshly drying out the skin.
Citric acid helps to reverse the signs of sun damage while strengthening the top layer of the skin.
Tartaric and malic acid are derived from grapes and apples and aid in the skin’s ability to efficiently respire.
Salicylic acid mentioned above and used in our cleansing milk loosens the glue that holds excess sebum on the skin and a much better alternative to benzoyl peroxide, per EU cosmetic regulation standards which bans the use of benzoyl peroxide in skincare products.
Lastly, gluconolactone acid strengthens the skin’s barrier function and allows the skin to reduce redness issues. It also inhibits elastase, the cause of skin sagging.
Since the skin’s surface is naturally acidic and an oil-based structure, this illuminating toning essence is like taking your face to the gym.
If your skin is showing signs of aging; if you suffer from blemishes, spots, or acne; or if your main concern is dull, dehydrated, or dry skin, this product is all about the exterior texture of the skin—where it becomes smoother-textured, softer, younger-looking, evenness of skin tone is clearer, and skin feels firmer with more elasticity. Because of the potential increase in sunburn cell formation following the use of acidic toners, we recommend using this product three times a week as an overnight mask and to completely remove it from the skin during the morning cleansing ritual.
The other product I truly, really love is the DIVINE ORIGIN™ Radiance Mist which is basically three things: a floral mist that jumpstarts the hydration process of your skincare ritual, a moisture-protection mist that keeps HEALER’S GOLD™ skincare treatments on your skin all-day, and a neutralizer when applied after the acidic toner. It contains the same ratios of lipids (oils), proteins (peptides), and polysaccharides (aloe, turmeric, frankincense, and rose hydrosols) found in your skin cells. A lot of people ask why the KOKOBÉRNA skincare range doesn’t have a heavy eye-cream; the mist is why. It ensures your skin stays hydrated without the need for heavier products because as the skin ages, it gets thinner so richer skin/eye products are not favorable because they make your eyes puffy; and puffy does not equate to plump or dewy. Back to the mist… use it alone, after cleansing, under serums, over serums, under face oil, over face oil, under makeup, over makeup, on an airplane, in your car, at your desk, when it’s hot, when it’s cold… wherever and whenever! If in doubt as to the hydration levels of your skin, our KOKOBÉRNA mist is a savior for dry, dehydrated skin.
- Lastly, our beloved – 14 generations strong. A phyto-nutrient dense formula that has transcended the centuries. HEALER’S GOLD™ Face Oil is a moisturizer that delivers nutrient-dense vitamins, minerals, amino acids, and omega fatty acids 3-6-9 and -7 which greatly enhances the skin’s moisturization factor and literally replaces lost glow on maturing skin. The therapeutic organic formula comprises different 35 African botanical seed oils and aromatherapeutic essentials oils that form a synergistic profile that has unique phyto-nutrient and lipidic profiles not typically seen. The unique molecular structure of the oils used in the formula are very small and combined with our proprietary essential oil blend allows them to easily penetrate the hydrolipidic layer of the skin so when you apply it to the skin, it immediately calms the skin’s neuro-sensory microbiome, easily absorbs, and enhances the reparative function of the skin.
If you are in your late 30s, 40s, 50s, 60s, 70s, 80s, and 90s
While antioxidant-specific serums are important, the skin is better off with a pigmentation serum that reduces the appearance of sunspots and age spots while boosting collagen production with bio-active peptides and protecting against water loss that comes with hormonal changes in the body.
In Part Two of this series, I discuss how creating rituals that support the brain and gut can significantly contribute to healthy, glowing skin and increase efficacy of the skincare products we use.
Know that we love you and may you always be #kokobernabeautiful.
organic skin care products cleansing milk balm healthy glowing skin brain gut axis immunity stress