Category Archives: Healthy Aging

Deluxe Facial – February Service Special

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Deluxe Facial

Fully customized facial with special masks, extractions, hand and arm plus foot and leg massage.
90 minutes – $105 (now $99 – plus a back massage!)

Beauty begins with perfect skin, and regular facials – as well as scrupulous home care – are a must. We provide effective treatments and education for home-care using the botanical Tu’el, by Eva’s Esthetics and the 100% vegan product line, OSEA – Skincare from the Sea. Every Star Brows facial includes a deep-pore cleansing, manual and chemical exfoliation, extractions, customized treatment masks, steam and aroma-towels, soothing massage, and a mineral makeup finish.

Facial services at the spa feature the bodyCushion™ by Body Support System, which cradles curves, supporting your body and allowing complete relaxation. Ambient lighting, radiant heat, essential oils and massage, add a luxurious feel to every treatment.

See you at the spa!

New Year – Same You?

goddessEverybody’s talking about New Years resolutions this time of year, but most of what I hear is about what to do (or not do) and less about how to establish and incorporate belief systems that drive our moment-to-moment choices and decisions.

I gave my grandson a butterfly kit for Christmas, and he just called to say that they had finally completed metamorphosis and are flying around ready to be set free! Ahhh, the power of transformation is fascinating!

The Zen Theory of Change is simply noticing! “I free myself not by trying to be free, but simply by noticing how I am imprisoning myself, in the very moment that I am imprisoning myself.”

There are so many ways to seek change, enlightenment, passion, and joy, and many different words to talk about the process.

My life (and work) revolves around growth and transformation; it is in this process that I feel most alive! Below are some suggestions that may inspire you as you continue your transformation journey:

Ask yourself the following questions

What do I want for my health and well-being?

How do I want to look and feel?

If I don’t take care of myself, how will my health be in three, five, or ten years?

After you’ve taken some time to create the vision for your future and are faced with a decision about a self-care issue, you need simply to ask yourself “Does this move me toward or away from my vision?”

Here are six areas to start with:

Self-Study

Knowing yourself helps you become aware of your long-term needs and allows you to access and make adjustments moment-to-moment.

Personally, I am so focused on living in the now. There’s enough of what I need in the moment to deal with whatever is in front of me. It’s kind of like my purse (I need a new one!). I keep the contents low, just what I’ll be needing to get me through the day. I don’t want it to become a burden weighing me down. But I have to stay on it;  it attracts all sorts of things throughout the day that have to be purged.

Integrity and Personal Boundaries

Integrity is simply “walking your talk” and establishing personal boundaries helps you maintain your integrity. Over time, if you sacrifice your values at the expense of your self-care and energy reserves, the scenario will end in depletion or burnout.

One of my favorite quotes is from Dag Hammarskjöld: “Never for the sake of peace and quiet deny your own experience or convictions.” I realize I can’t change anyone, but I can change how I act or react to them. There is so much peace and power in being responsible for myself and not giving anyone the power to control my thoughts or reactions.

Vital Practices

Three universal self-care components are integral parts of daily life: breathing, drinking water, and getting optimal nutrition. 

Seems like I trip up on all three every day, but I am most immediately in need of the constant reminder to breathe, consciously, fully, and with personal awareness. I love a little book called Taming Your Gremlin. Author Rick Carlson contends that every “choice” we make begins with a breath. An excerpt follows:

Step #1 Simply Notice: With each breath in and out we are experiencing a moment in time. It is in this moment that we need to be fully aware and present, because each moment is truly a present, a gift, it is what I like to call “God’s Eternal Now.”

Supportive Environment

“If you don’t like something, change it. If you can’t change it, change your attitude.” Maya Angelou

From your home and work space’s physical environment to your friend groups, colleagues, and even family relationships, you have choices and indeed the responsibility to make each situation work for you. If you choose to stay in a challenging environment, you can create additional supportive relationships that can help you grow and learn in the very place you are planted.

Movement, Exercise and Rest

These three components offer you a way to energize and refuel your body. Movement and exercise improve mood, energy, and sleep. Our bodies run on a cycle of ultradian rhythms: multiple periods of  90-120 minutes throughout the day that our bodies move from higher and lower levels of alertness and energy. When our energy is waning, we feel  signs of  drowsiness, hunger or loss of focus. If we don’t take a rest or pause at this time, little by little the body’s energy is depleted. The key is noticing when you need a rest, and doing what you need to do to feel rejuvenated. 

Self-Care Team

Create a team of professionals to help. These professionals include but are not limited to the following: Physiologist, Accountant, Nutritionist, Personal Trainer, Chiropractor, Acupuncturist, Professional Mentor, Primary-care Physician, and of course, an Esthetician and Massage Therapist!

See you at the spa!

Linda “brow boss” Ruberto

Happy Holiday – Drink Up!

water2Holiday weight gain is, hands down, the most unwanted gift of all! Most of us know that a well-hydrated body works better and looks better. Your skin will be brighter and clearer, your body less sore, and the feeling of stress and tension will be lower when you are drinking the right amount of water for your body. But, did you know drinking water (at the right times) is essential, and can even help you with weight management?

1. Drink water when you first get up.
Like a gently flowing stream that pushes along debris and rocks, your circulatory system needs fluid to get rid of stubborn free radicals and residues from burned calories that were used during the night’s metabolism.

2. Drink water before each meal.
Drink water up to 30 minutes before a meal (so you don’t interfere with the action of digestion). It will help you feel fuller, so you may be less likely to overeat.
“Chugging water during meals severely hampers your stomach’s digestive powers and causes insulin levels to fluctuate significantly.” Macroboitic counselor Shonali Sabherwal
In addition, it is best to drink fluids two hours after meals as this helps in the absorption of nutrients.

3. Drink water as a snack.
“The next time you feel hungry, take a big, long drink of water and you may not need to eat. Because the hormones in our intestines that tell us we’re hungry are very similar to the hormones that let us know we’re thirsty, we’re not very good at distinguishing hunger from thirst, which is why we typically reach for food when we should be drinking.” Dr. Oz

4. Drink water before a workout.
Depending on the temperature, humidity, and your body’s fluid levels, you may need one or several glasses of water, each about eight ounces, to arm yourself against dehydration during an indoor or outdoor workout.

5. Drink water after a workout.
Following your exercise session, drink up to replace fluids lost by sweating and physical labor.

6. Have water with your medications/supplements.
Water helps to dissolve the medication and supplements and spread them throughout your digestive organs for rapid absorption. Water also prepares the tissues to receive the substance and put it to work right away. (Read the label to make sure water can be taken.)

7. Drink more water to prevent illness following exposures.
A well-hydrated body helps to move along any invaders before they settle down and multiply in your system.

8. Drink more water when you’re ill.
When you do become ill, drink plenty of fluids. The old-time recipe still works.

9. Have a glass of water when you’re tired.
Feeling tired? Fatigued? Need a nap but can’t take one? Have a glass of water instead.
Because of its ability to move quickly throughout the body, water can reach your brain and activate it right before a meeting or other situation in which you need to pay attention.

10. Drink plenty of water before and after a massage or facial.
The purpose of professional spa treatments is to relax, detoxify, increase blood and lymph flow, and generally improve skin tone and your sense of wellness and vitality. Water helps facilitate a healthy treatment outcome.

And by the way, are you wondering whether tap or bottled water is better? Check out The Story of Bottled Water.

See you at the spa!
Linda “Brow Boss” Ruberto

Motorized Facial Brushes: Harmful or Helpful?

facial brushI usually like to focus on doing product reviews based on what we love and use at the spa, leaving the rest to all of the great beauty bloggers out there. But the motorized brush (the most popular being the Clarisonic) has become so popular that I ask you to consider the following  information if you’re currently using or considering purchasing one. 

These are the effects and changes in the skin I have observed in clients who have used a motorized brush as directed by the manufacturer:

What are the motorized brush company claims?

1. Removes makeup six times better than manual cleansing

The electric brush is really just one exfoliating tool to physically lift off dry, dead skin cells and, in the process, remove dirt and makeup. But the truth is that you can only remove so much dead skin without affecting live skin. You do not want to exfoliate to the point of destroying healthy cells.

2. Gentle enough to use twice a day

My problem is not with the brush itself, because exfoliating is very important. However, I do have a concern with how often they recommend using it. It is my belief that this is way too much of this kind of exfoliation, I generally recommend using it no more than 2-3 times per week.

You have to understand how exfoliation affects the skin. An electric (or hand-held manual brush for that matter), facial scrub, acid, enzyme, wash cloth, or whatever form of cell-turn method you use can cause skin damage and may accelerate aging if used too frequently.

3. Minimizes the appearance of visible pores

Exfoliating too aggressively and too often can create inflammation (even if not visible), setting off a response that creates free radicals.

4. Reduces oily areas, dry skin patches, and blemishes

Exfoliating too aggressively and too often can cause dryness and disrupt the skin’s lipid barrier. This allows moisture to seep out of the cells more easily, causing them to become dehydrated. Your skin will produce more oil to compensate for the fluid loss.

5. Safe for cleansing all skin types

This just isn’t true. Excessive (or the wrong kind) of stimulation to the skin can be damaging, especially for clients with a skin disorder like rosacea.

6. Recommended for use with any non-abrasive cleanser

Definitely don’t use an abrasive or even a sudsing (pH modifying surfactant) cleanser. But this device seems to be used primarily by the “more is better” crowd, and I’ll bet some users are adding a grainy scrub.

Here are a few skin facts:

A major cause of aging is chronic and prolonged inflammation, which is associated with tissue destruction.

When you give the skin trauma, it goes into repair mode and stimulates cellular regeneration. This can be very beneficial to the skin, but if you create trauma too often by over-exfoliating, then it’s continually setting up a cascade of free radical damage that triggers premature aging. This is the last thing the skin needs to stay looking young.

For skin that is extremely reactive to stimulation (skin of color and for those prone to severe discoloration) you need to treat your skin gently to avoid post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation resulting in increased skin discoloration.

You do want your skin hygienically clean, but not clean like you want your kitchen floor. There is a certain amount of good bacteria that the skin needs to keep it healthy and functioning well, so you don’t want to strip it by over-using any product or tool.

What’s the right amount of exfoliation?

These are my favorite forms of exfoliation but they must be tailored to the individual’s skin type and condition, as well as personal skincare habits:

  • Use an alcohol-free Glycolic (AHA or BHA serum 1-3 times a week ) as recommended by a skincare specialist for your individual skin type and condition: Power Peel.
  • A gentle facial scrub like  Power Scrub OR your brush 2-3 times a week—and that’s it. The idea here is that using a fruit/food acid serum will dissolve the dry skin cells while a physical exfoliant like a scrub or brush will lift off the dry skin cells. They both work differently.
  • Cleansing Oil exfoliates (by the gentle massage action you use to apply it), and deeply cleanses because the skin doesn’t “resist” or tighten to the medium of oil as it is symbiotic with the oil found naturally in the skin. If red-flags go up when I use the phrase “cleansing oil”  know that we use individual  formulas designed for oily, acne-prone, sensitive and dry skin types.
  • A professional Resurfacing Treatment should be performed regularly. Recommendations for frequency vary, but the most effective is ten days to two weeks apart..

See you at the spa!

 

High Frequency Facials

New at Star Brows! Star Brows Fashion Shoot resized-199

Recently we purchased a new skincare-treatment machine that has the capability to perform multiple functions. While we focus primarily on European-style facials (relaxing, hands-on, rather than machine-oriented), we value results too! Below is an explanation of some of the features and benefits you’ll experience during your next facial.

High frequency treatments are a safe, gentle, non-invasive means to achieve acne clarification and skin rejuvenation.  The gentle oscillating, oxygenating power of low level electrical current has been shown to enhance circulation, increase collagen and elastin production, eliminate toxins and acne-causing bacteria, encourage lymphatic drainage, exfoliate dead skin cells, and assist with improved skincare product performance and absorption.

High frequency current stimulation forces an infusion of enriched oxygen molecules into the skin, thus cleansing, massaging, stimulating blood flow, dilating superficial blood vessels, re-texturizing, and increasing lymphatic drainage. This results in an improvement in blood circulation and cell renewal.  Increased production levels of collagen and elastin soften and smooth away wrinkles, reduce pore size, improve overall skin texture,  and promote a pleasant sense of well-being.

The use of low level electrical current also promotes a cleansing, antibacterial action that helps eliminate and prevent the onset of acne.  The skin is left feeling energized, rosy, firm, refreshed, and noticeably softer – even after just one treatment.  The enriched oxygen molecules produced by the high frequency machine are safe and are also effective in treating almost any skin lesion from acne to scars.

Benefits:

  • Gentle, non-invasive resurfacing procedure
  • Effective treatment for acne, enlarged pores, and scarring
  • Consistent treatments can provide a lasting long-term, healthy-aging alternative to reduce fine lines, wrinkles, and sagging skin

The following precautions should be taken:

1. Avoid using AHA or BHA products and unprotected sun exposure at least three days before and after your treatment.

2. Do not schedule a high frequency facial if any of the following are present: pregnancy, cuts and abrasions, diabetes, heart disease or pacemaker, metal pins or plates, dental braces, sunburn, phlebitis or thrombosis, vascular conditions, or any other condition for which you are under a physician’s care.

See you at the spa!

 

Power Scrub

power scrubOUT WITH THE OLD AND IN WITH THE NEW
Buff your skin to a youthful new glow with Tu’eL Power Scrub. Finely granulated Pumice and Diatomaceous Earth exfoliate dead skin, unclog pores and speed up skin’s renewal process. Tea Tree and Lemongrass tone and heal while Vitamin E and Chamomile condition and calm. Give your face a fresh start.

Tu’eL Power Scrub is  for all skin types. It refines skin surface, removes flaky, dry skin and helps increase product absorption. Peeling Cream can be used at home by itself or with Glyco-A Gel. Peeling Cream should not be used with active acne. See below for home treatment instructions.

Key Ingredients
  • Diatomaceous Earth: Smoothes away dead skin cells
  • Pumice: Buffs the skin
  •  Tea Tree Oil: Natural antiseptic, conditions skin
  •  Lactic Acid: Exfoliates

Complete Ingredients

Purified Water, Diatomaceous Earth, Pumice, Propylene Glycol, Lactic Acid, Hybrid Safflower Oil, Cetyl Alcohol, Sodium Hydroxide, Glyceryl Stearate, Polyacrylamide (and) C13-14 Isoparaffin (and) Laureth-7, Tea Tree Oil, Lemongrass Oil, Tocopheryl Acetate (Vitamin E Acetate), Chamomile Extract, Phenoxyethanol, Sorbic Acid, Caramel

Power Scrub Home Applications

1. Apply Power Scrub to moist skin, massage briefly adding water. Then rinse thoroughly.

2. Combine Power Scrub with bath salts for an exfoliating body treatment.

See you at the spa!

Mother’s Day Spa Package

images (2)We would love to treat you or someone you love to this special collection of some of our clients’ favorite spa services!

Mother’s Day Spa Special

Arrive a couple of minutes early so you can get settled and relax for a few minutes in the quiet environment of the spa, and plan on staying for about an-hour-and-a-half.

When you enter the treatment room, you will feel the warm air provided by state-of-the-art radiant heat in the treatment rooms. You’ll smell calming essential oils and be enveloped by the soft candlelight and music.

As you climb under crisp, clean, warmed sheets your body’s curves will be cradled by special contoured bodyCushions.

We’ll coax your body into a state of bliss and calm with our signature back treatment which combines massage with a deep cleansing skin treatment. 

Next, detoxifying and de-stressing drops of essential oils will be applied along your spine (Raindrop Therapy).

Turn over and the Star Massage begins with Tu’el’s Cleansing Oils and Herbalizers chosen for your skin type. Puffiness, sinus pressure, jaw tension and all signs of stress dissipate from your face, neck, and shoulders – mmm, who knew it could feel this good?

Now the facial begins with warmed towels, gentle steam, and special masks and scrubs designed to alleviate your skin’s concerns.

And don’t forget those hard working hands and feet. They will be meticulously worked out, every finger and every toe rubbed until they are eased and your feet will be wrapped in warm towels.

Later, plan on relaxing and drinking plenty of water with slices of organic lemons to complete a perfect experience.

Who knew Star Brows was about more than eyebrow couture? Now’s your chance to see! Limited spaces are available for this special offer, so call now – 805-722-8222  – and mention the Mother’s Day Spa Special.

It’s not on the menu and is specially priced at $110 (save $75!). Offer expires on May 31, 2013

See you at the spa!

 

 

Lotions and Potions: April Product Feature 2013

OSEA-Skin-CareGet glowing skin!

With the arrival of spring , you’ll be showing more skin and exposing more of it to the elements. Get a head start on maintaining beautiful, healthy skin with a little TLC and a few of our best-selling favorites.

TU’EL

  • Hydrate XS 1000 Super Serum Moisture Gel $48
  • Botanical Booster Essential Oil Synergy Blends $32
  • Crystal C  Antioxidant Vitamin C Serum $34

OSEA

  • Atmosphere Protection Cream – a lightweight moisturizer that fights dehydration, pollution, and the elements $38
  • Brightening Serum – reduces hyper-pigmentation and revives sun-damaged skin $56
  • Eyes and Lips – restores damaged skin and fights free radicals $56

If you’re new to Star Brows, you may not know about The Monthly Product Feature or Rewards yet. To put it simply, 10% of all your product purchases, all the time, go toward free Service Enhancements, like Raindrop Therapy, Lash Tint, Chemical Peels, or Star Massage.

When a product is the Monthly Feature, like selected OSEA and Tu’el Products this month, you’ll get 20% back in Rewards.

See you at the spa!

*Prices quoted are not guaranteed after this offer expires.

OSEA Bath Products: January Product Feature 2013

bathA good soak in a warm bath is a wonderful wintertime ritual 

It really is hard to beat the relaxing, cathartic effects of lounging in a warm tub of water, where the mind can so easily find peace and calm. These simple moments of indulgence are a great way to end the day, as well.

The winter months can be harsh on our skin, regardless of our moisturizing regimens. But when done correctly, a nice bath can actually hydrate and re-mineralize your skin.

Ideally, your tub water is not too warm, as that can dehydrate your skin. Around 100 degrees Fahrenheit is where you want it. Turn off the phone, turn on some soft music, and close the door to the day’s problems.

Here are some of my favorite ways to make bathing (or showering) a spa experience

  •   Undaria Algae Oil – We use this for the body massage during Facials at Star Brows! This lightweight marine-based body oil is rich in organic botanical oils, sea minerals, and antioxidants. This is the ultimate skin repair, loaded with luscious seed oils–acai, babassu, passion fruit, sesame–and Undaria Algae, to deliver powerful antioxidant vitamins and essential fatty acids to dry, sun-damaged skin. Check this out for use with tattoos.

 

  •  Gigartina Beauty Bath – “I wanted to bring the ocean into the home,” says OSEA Skincare owner Jennifer Palmer. “In Patagonia, I took a fresh seaweed bath and really wanted to recreate that experience. Most seaweed baths are either straight powders that are difficult to dissolve and smell like low tide, or they are water-based, diluted and laden with preservatives, or they are nothing more than Epsom salts with fragrance. The Gigartina Beauty Bath performs as a true bath therapy product that is tied to the water and the sea – the core concept of spa.”

 

  • Green Marine Detox Bath – This is a potent bath powder that helps heal eczema and psoriasis and is rich in minerals, enzymes, and vitamins that the skin is able to absorb, including phosphorous, zinc, potassium, and calcium. USDA Certified Organic Undaria Seaweed from the pure waters of Patagonia. This purifying, powerful, antioxidant-rich seaweed helps with hormonal imbalance and water retention.

 

  • Salts of the Earth Scrub – Spiked with certified organic botanical oils from around the globe. Salts of the Earth come from the Dead Sea, the Bolivian coast, the Utah desert and the Himalayas. This exotic blend of the purest salt on Earth contains 84 trace minerals and gets its unique pink color from the rich ores they contain. The ingredients in these salts plump up the skin, enticing it to soak up nutrients and look more youthful.

 

  • Undaria Body Polish – Natural exfoliants feel gentle on the skin while delivering a stimulating scrub action. Small and powerful pumice grains help remove dead cells along with a bio-scrub blend of acai and guaraná. Guaraná is recognized for it’s tonifying and astringent properties, as well as reducing cellulite. Acai delivers a powerful synergy of healthy-aging properties to skin, plus hemp and passionfruit seed oils feed the skin Omega 3-6-9 essential fatty acids.

If you’re new to Star Brows, you may not know about The Product Feature or Rewards yet. To put it simply, 10% of all your product purchases, all the time, go toward free Service Enhancements, like Raindrop Therapy, Lash Tint, Chemical Peels, or Star Massage.

When a product is the Monthly Feature, like the OSEA Bath Products this month, you’ll get 20% back in Rewards.

See you at the spa!

 

Keep Calm and Pay Your Dues

In this economy, it’s really tempting to complain and panic about the labor and toil of earning a living. I’m not speaking to the masses here. I know there are people who are legitimately experiencing hard times, and I wouldn’t want to minimize their plight.

My husband is launching a new business. He’s never been a solo-entrepreneur and he’s 61! It’s called: Pulcinella Wood-fired Pizza and Catering, so the topic of keeping calm and paying your dues is hot at our house!

I have 42 blog posts on Healthy Aging. That’s more than I have in any other category.  Clearly, for me at least, it’s a priority. For what it’s worth, here’s my take on making a buck along the way:

Find something you are passionate about. I believe each of us has a special calling or skill-set with an innate desire to fulfill it.  Be Alive!

Spend time dreaming about how you could use that passion to earn a living. You may just start out doing it as a hobby, then move to part-time, and so on. And remember: It’s only money.

Be willing to pay your dues. My dad used to wash his ship-mates’ clothes, and polish their shoes for extra money when he was in the Navy. Later, when he wanted to learn the gas-station business , he offered to work for free, and sometime later he bought the place! Now, at 84, he’s the owner of Robert Hall Winery, and he started the vineyard on virgin land when he was 70 years young!

How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time! It’s only hard when you look at swallowing it whole.

In Minnesota, I used to garden with a Hmong woman. She asked me something one day: “We think differently than Americans. They work a long day so they can enjoy a short evening – five days to enjoy a weekend or a lifetime to enjoy a few years in retirement?” I’ve never forgotten that. Her people, she went on to explain, consider all of their time “life.” They weave work, family, and play into their hours, days, and years. They don’t portion slots of time out to simply endure so they can get on to what they really want to do. Happiness, after all, is a choice…I say Choose Happy!

I paid my dues when I started out in the spa and wellness profession, and every time I start a new venture – or branch out in a new direction – I pay dues again.  Fresh energy needs to be cultivated, fear checked, and the vision nurtured with each new step.

In fact, in the beginning of last month I was bemoaning a new venture into the wedding market. Now just 7 weeks later, I have a great new employee (Aesthetician – Kelli June), we’ve done a very successful event for the Bridal Show at Madonna Inn,  and I’ve been asked to write another article for Skin Deep Magazine about Wedding Services.

Dare to dream, fellow sojourner. Be fearless. You only go around once, and life’s all about the journey.

See you at the spa!