Dana Claudat of the Tao of Dana interviewed Rosemira founder Mira Herman on seasonal skincare. The interview is reproduced, with Dana’s permission, below:
Seasonal skincare can be the key to total radiance! Mira Herman, the founder of Rosemira Organics (a favorite skincare line of mine) as well as a chiropractor and acupuncturist, has taken the time to share some really incredible insight on everything from sunscreens to nutrition, a massive amount of skinscare tips for Spring that you will love! Today I got to chat with Mira Herman, holistic skincare guru, and I am soaking in all these tips for a Spring and Summer glow!
My skin is the same year round, but I know that is a rarity. What do you notice happens to skin when the seasons change?
Of-course it depends on the external environment you are in as well as your “inner environment” so to speak. Generally when changing from summer to fall for example, wind may be an external factor as well as increased use of dry heat. it is likely that you haven’t yet adjusted your diet from eating lots of raw foods (unless you eat only raw foods and then it is a different matter), to warmer, cooked foods with warming spices such as ginger for example, so the disparity between the change of weather and your inner temperature so to speak will lend itself to dry skin and sometimes even irritated or sensitive skin which may then react to products which aren’t pure and toxin free- i.e irritant free.
When the season changes from Winter to Spring now the heavy moisturizing products we were relying on to combat winter dryness are traded for lighter products. Ee still need our products to be hydrating and moisturizing, but at the same time we want them to feel lighter and to be easily absorbed, so they don’t leave a sensation of an extra film on the skin.
Change of seasons requires change of products just like we change our food habits based on the seasons, what fruits and vegetables are available and what your body seems to be asking for.
As a TCM practitioner (chiro/ acu) what are the lifestyle changes you recommend to stay optimum in the warm weather?
One thing as a TCM practitioner we believe it is important not to tax the body un-necessarily. For example people like to drink cold icy drinks in warm weather. The body then is required to expend energy to warm that icy drink to body temperature, and that is wasted energy. As the weather changes and we tend to crave colder drinks try to avoid using ice and stick to liquids which will quench your thirst rather than those that increase your sense of thirst and dehydration such as sodas which are specifically formulated to keep you thirsty.
What are your thoughts on sunscreen?
This is a very important topic, and I know the answer will be longer than you have probably expected.
I have been asked often why I do not make moisturizers with SPF factors considering how popular these products are. However, each time I considered it I ended up with the same response. Most of the sunscreen ingredients used today are toxic and the so called “safe” ones have not been proven to be safe. We will know if 20 to 30 year’s time and I am not willing to use them with that risk. But more importantly, the whole subject of sun damage and skin cancer has been misrepresented to the advantage of the skin care industry not our own.
Exposure to the sun has received such a bad rap for so many years, that the fear factor is huge. Though the incidence of Melanoma – the deadliest skin cancer has been rising steadily over the past several decades, it appears the rise in numbers is due to improper diagnosis whereby simple, benign non-cancerous lesions are misdiagnosed as Melanoma. There is also ample evidence suggesting that it is not exposure to the sun which is the primary cause of skin cancer but rather that the incidence of Melanoma as well as other forms of cancer has been found to decrease with greater sun exposure and increase with use of sunscreens. Quite a shocker right?
Studies are revealing that optimizing Vitamin D3 production in the body by appropriate exposure to the sun’s UVB radiation is protective against Melanoma and up to 16 other types of cancer including lung, prostate, ovarian and pancreatic cancer, as well as reducing skin damage and skin aging. A diet rich in raw unprocessed foods, vegetables, fruits, seeds and nuts provides the body with ample antioxidants that help fight free radicals and thus reduce the risk of skin again and many forms of cancer. In addition taking a supplement of the carotenoid astaxanthin is also important in protecting the skin from sun damage and skin aging.
These factors are all much more effective in protecting against cancer than using sunscreens which actually contain toxic ingredients associated with cancer production, including bug repellant among others. Being that sunscreen products are the most lucrative among skin care products and their market share is growing each year, current research will continue to be overlooked and underexposed and so it is up to us to educate ourselves as to what is best for us, not the skin care industry.
I understand that a sudden shift of one’s view about the use of sunscreen products is not likely, so if you aren’t comfortable with the idea I would suggest reading up on current research. In addition if you are still inclined to use sun screen products, avoid using moisturizing creams or serums that are rated as SPF. Rather use a clean and pure moisturizing cream (mine do not include sun screen for example) and then you can put a sunscreen on top in the form of foundation or a cream. Your moisturizing cream will do what it does best – penetrate your skin and moisturize, and it will also act as a barrier to the sunscreen ingredients from penetrating deeper into the skin, thus they stay on top of the skin where they belong anyway if they are to combat UVA.
I like to use products which you could say are natural sunscreens. Ingredients like Argan Oil, Buriti Oil, Carrot Seed oil, which are nourishing to the skin and offer natural protection from the damaging rays. My Skin Sonata Argan Oil Infusion is one such product with natural and health sunscreen properties.
Your products are rich in essential oils, and they are intoxicating. What aromatherapy is best for the active Spring?
Spring seems to call on fresh scents. We want to shed the heaviness of winter in many ways including scent. I love using Lemon Rind, Pink Grapefruit, Sweet Orange and Lemongrass to name a few. And although often using just one essential oil creates a simple, yet fresh and elegant scent, it is in the synergy of ingredients where the true magic happens. That also happens to be my favorite playground.