Breakthrough discoveries with brighteners

One approach to looking younger is whitening the skin.

by Linda Leibl —

Even though beauty, skin care and anti-aging products have always been and continue to be in high demand, recent research shows that women are seeking more prestigious products and demanding better results than ever.

Facial makeup, foundations and powders registered a 5 percent growth during 2007-2008 in Western Europe, compared to just above 0.5 percent in the United States. This is largely linked to the concept of facial color cosmetics as an extension of skin care in Europe. American women are starting to get onboard with this now.

In Europe, a woman will spend more on a premium foundation, powder and skin care, while the average American woman will spend more on color and cosmetic glamour items. This is one reason why American women can appear more aged than European women.

As a therapeutic aesthetician in private practice for more than 25 years, I have seen that my European clients, in general, seem to be more concerned with preventative care of their skin. Fewer European women are exposed to as much sun as American women are, especially in Arizona, but we are typically less concerned with prevention and protection of our skin.

What to do

Now is the time to start giving your skin the attention it deserves — not only from a glamour and aesthetic standpoint, but also to prevent skin adversities and even skin cancer. Cleansing, toning, lifting, moisturizing and protection all should be done on a daily basis.

I recommend that mothers begin taking their daughters for professional facials as early as age 14. This not only will improve most teenagers’ skin conditions, but it will also educate them to make informed decisions about professional treatments and products — ideally for the rest of their lives.

The most important things to do from ages 18 to 36 are to start with basic facials and buy the best foundation and powder you can afford. After 36 years of age, find the best facialist you can afford and get more advanced facials. After age 40, you need to move into prevention, as well as slowing down and reversing the aging process for healthier, younger looking skin.

Consider looking at European product lines. For almost 30 years, Europe has been at the forefront in the skin care arena and is known for delivering the latest in cutting-edge technology. These companies focus on integrity by constantly monitoring their biologists, chemists and herbalists. Overall, their standards seem to be much higher than those of U.S. companies.

The line between skin care and color cosmetics is increasingly blurred, and many consumers refuse to trade down to less expensive options for their foundation. Studies have shown that women continue to opt for premium and prestige products, many of which are now formulated to match skin tone. One of the latest is Optilight Technology from Arbonne, which complements your skin care regime perfectly.

Whitening vs. brightening

One approach to looking younger is whitening the skin. According to Carrie Lennard, of Skin Inc. magazine, skin whiteners have been highly successful from Asia-Pacific to Western markets, and help the skin appear younger. These whiteners have been successfully adopted by Western markets due to their being referred to as brighteners. They improve skin tone and bring a brighter, younger and healthier radiance to the skin, as opposed to traditional wrinkle erasers and anti-aging products.

Do your research and look for a high-performance line that works with both your anti-aging skin care and your color/cosmetics line, as well as offering you skin brightening products that are pure, safe and beneficial. And ask if they have “before and after” photos.

You want a flawless, even-toned complexion, so look for licorice extract and ascorbyl glucoside for antioxidant benefits and brightening, as well as other key scientifically proven brightening ingredients and botanicals. These products may be packaged in a night serum, day crème, hand therapy crème and even a concentrated age-spot minimizer for more stubborn darker spots.

You should be able to use all these brightening products with your daily skin care regime to achieve a more youthful and refreshed look.

Fresh and clean is the key

How long has it been since you cleaned out your makeup drawer or updated your products? Here are a few guidelines to help you:

  •  If it smells, throw it out.
  • Wash makeup brushes often with a gentle shampoo, then rinse, dab with a paper towel and air dry.
  • Do not share brushes.
  • Schedule a makeup session every two to three years to keep your look fresh and youthful, as concepts, techniques and application are always evolving.

References for this article are from Skin Inc. magazine and Dr. Peter Matravers, senior vice president of product development at Arbonne International.


Linda L. Leibl, B.S., an anti-aging aesthetician, created Advanced Skin Technology in 1994. or 480-443-3445.

Reprinted from AzNetNews, Volume 29, Number 3, June/July 2010.

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