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Summer Travel Tips!

It’s that time of year when everyone is thinking about summer travel. Here is a list of frequently asked questions regarding travel and your skin. 

Q: What advice would you give female travelers on what to bring to care for their skin when on the road during the summer, such as moisturizing/face/body washing?

A: Many women skip cleansing at night when they are on the road and tired! It is very important to take the few minutes required to do the following:

1 – Pre-cleanse – with products that remove your make-up

2 – Cleanse – a gentle cleanser is good for all skin types, most of these do not have “soap” in them, avoiding drying out the skin.

3 – Toning the skin – (IF time is a constraint, this step can be left out).  Toner ensures the acid level in the skin is appropriate for maximum penetration of the other products.

4 – Correction and Stimulation: This step usually involves product with either Vitamin A (Retin-A) or skin lightening agents like Kojic acid or hydroquinone.

5 – ALWAYS END WITH UV PROTECTION BEFORE YOUR MAKE UP. ONCE YOU PUT ON UV PROTECTION, no other ingredients will penetrate the skin.

Q: What products in general do you think women often forget to bring with them?

A: HATS and LIP PROTECTION! The scalp and lips are vulnerable to skin cancer and often neglected. Most lipsticks and glosses have no SPF; or if they do, it is only SPF15-20. Colorscience makes a powder sunscreen, which is great to apply to hair parts and ears, so if the hat is forgotten, not all is lost. They also have lip-glosses with SPF 35.

Q: What products are good for certain types of skin, such as combination, dry, and sensitive?

A: I generally prefer to see a person before making recommendations, but for the summer – I recommend that everyone cleanse and tone their skin with gentle products, and then apply products with Vitamin C and E BEFORE they apply sunscreen (UV Protection.)… Why?: When it comes to Photoprotection you cannot beat these mighty vitamins.  What does this mean?: Sunscreens, even when properly applied, block only 55% of free radicals produced by Ultraviolet (UV) light exposure. For the best protection, sunscreens should be used in conjunction with antioxidant products that protect your skin from these free radicals.

There are three forms of vitamin C, the first form, L-ascorbic acid, is the active form. This powerhouse can turn yellow or brown when exposed to oxygen, so it is usually found in dark glass bottles. The active form of vitamin E is alpha-Tocopherol.

When Vitamin C and E (best used in combination) are applied to the skin and then the skin is exposed to UV radiation, there is a significant reduction in erythema, edema, sunburn cell formation, changes on the fat cells and DNA, as well as immunosuppression. Did you know that when you lie out in the sun, you are actually reducing your resistance to infection or lowering your immunity? Getting that “healthy glow” isn’t so healthy after all!   What does this all mean?: As long as these vitamins are on the skin BEFORE chronic or prolonged exposure, you are less likely to develop wrinkles and even skin tumors. In addition, Vitamin-C also has anti-inflammatory properties, which can calm redness.

For best results these products must be applied to the skin BEFORE exposure to UV light, so apply them after you apply your toner!

Although both of these vitamins are widely used in many topical cosmetic products, reports of side effects such as allergic or irritant skin reactions are rare. We have a GREAT NEW product at FreshSkin in the drjosierecommends line called Protect and “C”erve that contains Vitamin C and E, green tea extracts, Arbutin, Bearberry and CoEnzyme 10.  (Check this months specials!)

Q: Bringing products on board that meet TSA requirements can be choosy. What do you suggest can be safely brought on board and what is essential to throw in your suitcase?

A: Powered sunscreen is fantastic because you do not need to worry about the TSA requirements. As mentioned above – Lip-gloss with SPF fits nicely into the quart bag, and a hat folds up. Finally I have been working on developing a new line of products that will be VERY easy (very few steps) to use and I am selling them in travel sizes so they will fit neatly into the quart size clear plastic bags.

Q: Feet can be sore after much walking. What is the best way to keep your soles smooth and stable?

A: Putting a layer of a product called “body glide,” and wearing wicking socks like “smartwool” on the feet prevents blisters, which is usually the beginning of calluses. In addition, I like to have folks make a solution of a ¼ cup of bleach in the bathtub and soak the whole body once per week. This has been should to cut down on the amount of “bacteria and fungi” that live on our skin and improves eczema and can prevent athlete’s foot.

Overseas Travel:

Q: What do I do if I am going somewhere where conditions differ from lodgings in the United States and Europe? What recommendations do you have for them to bring skincare or best take care of their skin if the local water is questionable?

A: HYDRATE, HYDRATE, HYDRATE,…. Bottled water is safe in every country. The minimum number of products to bring – our WASH ME GENTLEY or Vitamins for your skin cleanser, Protect and “C”erve, the Overnighter and EltaMD clear!  We also carry a very gently cleanser that you don’t need to wash off if the water is really a problem!

Q: With places that might be known for pollution such as air quality in China, what’s a good way to protect skin?

A: I am more concerned about the lungs, but the advice noted above is the same in China. Hydrate, Hydrate, Hydrate,…. This will help you sweat out anything you breathe in, but for some cities like Beijing – a light mask may be a good idea! After all, if you see the locals wearing them, then you won’t stand out!

Airplane Travel:

Q: It’s common that skin can be dried out during flights. What’s the best way to keep hydrated?

A: AVOID those alcohol containing drinks and HYDRATE, HYDRATE, HYDRATE!!  Care for your skin as I have stated above, but you may want to reapply moisturizer and lip balm throughout the flight. Generally, I recommend a moisturizer with SPF like our Colorescience gloss. That way you are prepared when you get off the plane, and you only have one product to carry.

In the Sun:


Q: When purchasing sunscreen, what ingredients/factors should you look for?

A: Zinc and Titanium are generally the best items for full UV protection.  Don’t forget to apply Protect and “C” erve  BEFORE the sunscreen!

Our favorite line of the cream based UV protection is EltaMD and we sell it for less than any RELIABLE website store!

Q: Are certain sunscreens good for certain types of skin?   

A: I usually recommend medical grade sunscreens that are obtained in a doctor’s office. When it comes to UV protection I truly believe “you get what you pay for”. After all, why would you want to risk developing skincancer (or WRINKLES!)   We have a line of UV protection, most of them are  oil-free and contain with both UVA and UVB protection. My personal favorite is EltaMD UV clear and for the summer they make two great TINTED UV blocks, which will give you the “color” that everyone craves in the summer.

Q: When is the best time to apply (or even reapply) sunscreen?

A: Most sunscreens have to be applied 20 minutes before exposure, except the physical blocks containing zinc and/or titanium, which are immediately effective.  The American Academy of Dermatology recommends that you reapply every 2 hours! If you are swimming, towel off and reapply.

In the Wild:

Q: With concerns over DEET and bug spray, what are some good alternatives for avoiding insect bites, i.e., natural remedies?

A: Some people are naturally immune to bites (lucky them), but for most of us we need to put products on the skin. Unfortunately, DEET is still the most effective, BUT that said here are some products that can work:

•   Citronella Oil

•   Lemon Eucalyptus Oil

•   Cinnamon Oil

•   Castor Oil

•   Rosemary Oil

•   Lemongrass Oil

•   Cedar Oil

•   Peppermint Oil

•   Clove Oil

•   Geranium Oil

•   Possibly Oils from Verbena, Pennyroyal, Lavender, Pine, Cajeput, Basil, Thyme, Allspice, Soybean, and Garlic

The best strategy really is to apply the essential oils to the skin first and then wear long sleeve and long pants that are made with lightweight material that are light colored (bug love dark colors). Stay away from swamps, or damp environments if possible, and don’t wear perfume!

Additional options include mosquito repellant patches, like the aptly named “Don’t Bite Me” patch, and some very expensive mosquito traps that are best used for large spaces like an outdoor deck or garden.

Q: What is the best way to treat rashes or sores from contact with infectious plants?

A: Know your plants – get pictures of them and then make sure you look for them to avoid them. If that is too much work then wear long sleeves and trousers. If you get poison ivy/oak/sumac you will really need to apply a lot of hydrocortisone cream to the area and take oral antihistamines. If it is anywhere near the face and eyes, you may need to see a doctor first.



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595 Elm Place, Suite 208
Highland Park, IL 60035