Right on cue, the holidays are here again, which means parties, get-togethers with friends, more parties and lots and lots of photos. Between over-indulging on holiday goodies and the harsh, winter weather, your skin can take a major beating over the next month making it look dull and lackluster. And we can’t have you looking anything but fabulous is your holiday #selfies, can we now? Luckily for you, I spritzed, slathered, scrubbed and patted all different kinds of products promising glowing skin, and found the best creams, serums, masks and more to achieve radiant skin in time for the holiday party circuit season. And for those looking for a more holistic approach, I chatted with Joanna Vargas, Celebrity Facialist and founder of Joanna Vargas Salon and Skincare, on some of her DIY and beauty from the inside tips to get a glowing complexion.
A great tip from Joanna is to start each day with a shot of chlorophyll. She says that doing this every morning will “brighten, oxygenate and hydrate your skin, as well as drain out puffiness by stimulating the lymphatic system, so it’s also good for cellulite.” She also says that eating avocados is best way to achieve perfectly hydrated skin from the inside out, so if you’re having issues with dry skin, this is an easy, and delicious, fix to add instance radiance and vibrancy to skin.
Joanna also shared her recipe for a fabulous DIY mask to help relieve dry winter skin. According to Joanna, “the yogurt in this hydrating mask is an anti-inflammatory with a lactic acid component. Avocado is something she recommends for any skin type – avocado has lots of B vitamins and fatty acids, so it’s essential to keep the skin hydrated, even in dry winter weather. The honey also hydrates, and will really transform the skin!”
Ingredients & directions:
1/2 cup yogurt
Leave on the skin for 20 minutes, then rinse.
Now, onto my favorite products to achieve glowing skin!
Arithmetic Konjac Exfoliating Sponge: This 100% organic sponge is now a bathroom staple in my apartment. Used in Asia for millennia, this all-natural sponge is made of the fiber of the konjaku root and is sustainably cultivated in a mountainous region of northern Japan where the plant grows natively. The sponge is similar in touch and appearance to a rock at first, but after soaking it in water for a few minutes, it quickly transforms into the softest and most effective way to cleanse, buff, and brighten skin. I use a quarter size amount of Dermalogica’s Skin Resurfacing Cleanser on it and clean my face morning and evening to help exfoliate and reveal newer skin over time. Price $20.
Obagi Professional-C Serum 15%: Vitamin C is not only good for your body, but also does wonders for your skin. This highly concentrated serum calms inflammation, instantly brightens skin and retains moisture. I like to apply this before I head out on really cold day because it creates a cold weather barrier for my skin and gives me a dewy glow. Price $90.50.
Tata Harper Concentrated Brightening Serum: If you’re looking for something with 100% natural ingredients, this super deluxe treatment is for you. It treats hyperpigmentation and discoloration in the skin by targeting melanin production and synthase, delivering a balanced, radiant skin tone. The rich formula contains active antioxidants such as Sea Daffodil Extract, Sea Fern Extract and Madonna Lily Stem Cells that boost cell renewal and aid in cellular detoxification while fighting environmental damage. It instantly delivers a beautiful glow to skin and smells like what I imagine the Garden of Eden to smell like. Price $220.
Equitance Brightening Serum + Spot Corrector: When my skin is dry it tends to look uneven. I love this product because it helps even out my skin tone and calms down redness (I tend to have a lot of redness in my skin). It uses a technology to continuously deliver key brightening ingredients like linoleic acid to bring clarity and radiance to skin. Price $125.
Rodial Super Acids X-Treme Acid Rush Peel: When you’re in need of an instant rush of glowy-ness, use this peel! It effectively and painlessly gets rid of dry, dull skin to reveal new, beautiful skin in a flash. It’s chock full of fruit acids and enzymes that work their magic to make your skin gorgeous in no time. I recommend only using it 1-2 times per week so you don’t over exfoliate. Price $94.
Joanna Vargas Exfoliating Mask: Not only does she give amazing skincare advice, but Joanna Vargas also happens to have an incredible product line as well. One of my favorites for achieving an instant glow is her Exfoliating Mask. This gentle exfoliant can be used as a quick facial scrub or a 15-minute exfoliating treatment. According to Joanna, “regular exfoliation is very important as it can improve the results of your skincare routine by bringing new life to your complexion. Using the Exfoliating Mask as a scrub or exfoliating treatment twice a week will ensure glowing skin consistently.” Price $75.
Prescriptives Vibrant-C Skin Brightening Cream Moisturizer: It’s difficult to find a cream moisturizer that will give you an instant glow, but with the advanced micro-optic luminizers in this product, look no further. This product has been around since 2000 and the reason why it has stood the test of time is because it works! I like to slather this on when I feel like going out makeup free, which is more often than not, since it adds a subtle glow without looking or feeling greasy. Price $50.
Z Skin Systems Method No. 1 Radiant Skin Formula: If you’re not in a hurry and want to achieve a glow over time using a different approach, I recommend this new nutrition-focused skin care system from Z Skin Systems. This skin care regimen includes ingestible and topical components that contain a strong antioxidant derived from paprika peppers, in levels that have been clinically evaluated to promote nourished skin that’s balanced internally and externally. Simply take the daily dietary supplement and use the topical serum, Nutri-Serum, that are designed to provide healthy skin, inside and out. Price $160 for a 30-day supply.