Good skin, like all other things, requires consistency. Similarly, it’s our healthy habits that determine youth and vibrancy. Speaking strictly of skin health, we are fundamentally advised to follow three steps. Cleanse. Tone. Moisturize.
More recently, skincare has evolved to become more than just a step-by-step routine. Often referred to as a self care ritual, our skin regimens are now about achieving an overall sense of wellbeing. With this holistic approach, we also learn that good skincare is not merely about the amount of products we use. On the contrary, good self care is anchored on finding a few good products and exercises. Yes, you read right. Just like our bodies, our faces can also benefit from a clean skin diet of natural ingredients and a good workout.
Skin specialist and micro-biome advocate Dr Elsa Jungman believes in simplifying the skincare routine. After suffering from toxic shock syndrome during her teens, she decided to dedicate her life’s work to understanding the skin’s micro-biome. Decades of research revealed that, “Everything in our daily lives—products, hormones, the environment, stress, etc.—impacts the overall skin ecosystem.”
Elsa was then inspired to create a range of clean skincare products that would keep this ecosystem balanced. She explains, “Current skincare routines have us using more products than ever, yet statistically, our skin has never felt worse.” This couldn’t be more true. After getting carried away by the hype of a 100-step skincare system, I’ve had to deal battle extreme skin sensitivities. Advice from my dermatologist went along the lines of: “Get rid of the creams and stick to the cleanser and serum.”
Elsa Jungman’s simple skin regimen was designed specifically to restoring harmony of skin’s micro-biome. The two-step system begins with a Gentle Cleanser, formulated using natural ingredients like Avocado Oil (for the BEGIN AGAIN variant) and a unique Jojoba blend (found in the NO SOAP variant).
Following a deep, restorative cleanse, Elsa recommends the use of a lightweight serum. Formulations from the EJ line are made with no more than four micro-biome friendly ingredients. There are variants for very dry, combination as well as normal skin types. The skin expert and founder shares, “My personal favorite is Start Over Moisturizing Serum that we have been using with our community during classes. It is made of two moisturizing oils, Squalane and Sacha Inchi oils, sans fragrances or additives.” Elsa explains that these serums are ideal for daily facial yoga exercises.
Apart from advocating for skin micro- biome research, Elsa is also a believer in the wonders of facial yoga. She explains, “Facial yoga shows great results as a body-mind approach and face toning/relaxation. Mental health and relaxation play a huge role in skin health improvement.”
Consistency renders results. “We recommend a little bit of facial yoga everyday for best effect,” says Elsa. “It can be as simple as a five to 10-minute routine in the morning or at night.” These relaxing exercises help to ease facial muscle, releasing tension and softening our faces. Other benefits of regular face yoga include: reduced appearance of wrinkles, firmer skin, increased blood circulation. If you are looking to start a face yoga practice this year, Elsa suggests these three easy sequences.
Step 1. Place 2-3 fingers at the tip of your chin.
Step 2. With medium-firm pressure, trace your jawline all the way up towards the ears.
Step 3. Repeat 6 times.
Step 1: Place two fingers at the root of the nose (near the inner corner of your eye).
Step 2. Brush your fingers lightly across your cheeks all the way to your cheek bones.
Step 3. Repeat 6 times.
Step 1: Using your fingertips, tap back and forth on the eyebrow using a light pressure.
Step 2: Then, continue tapping back and forth on the bony structure beneath the eye.
Step 3. Finally, tap all around the eyes, on the eyebrows and beneath the eye.