Wednesday, June 8, 2011

What's in Your Lipstick? You would be Shocked!

Many popular brands of lipstick carry lead. Do we really need lead in our lipsticks?

Safe Cosmetics 

Do you know that there are toxins and unsafe chemicals in the cosmetics and skin care products that we use every day? Ava Anderson Non-Toxic can inform you of the dangers and at the same time offer you a safe solution. After months of research and work with formulators from several leading cosmetics manufacturers, founder Ava Anderson launched a line of cosmetics and skin care that contains none of the harmful chemicals she warns you about.

You will be shocked at the ingredients in your products and your children’s products!

Its very easy to look up your products at You will see an overall hazard score from 0 to 10. Then, be sure to click on the product to see the disease implications of your ingredients.  Even “natural,” “organic,” “pure,” “dermatology tested” and “Dr, recommended” products, and those with a low to moderate hazard score can contain nasty ingredients- parabens, PEGs, PPGs, triclosan, 1,4 dioxane, ‘s, formaldehyde, SLS, and hundreds of others. Consider the “body burden” of a lifetime of exposure to the toxic ingredients in these products.

The Ava Anderson Non-Toxic solution 

Non-Toxic Lipsticks, lipgloss, and chapsticks!


NO parabens¸ NO PEGs or SLS, NO synthetic “fragrance” (manufacturers can hide up to 600 ingredients in this “ingredient” without listing it on the label!)  and No hidden ingredients or contaminants - NO phthalates, No nitrosamines, NO formaldehyde.
“While Americans are regularly exposed to toxic chemicals in their everyday consumer products - from plastic softeners that can contribute to sexual malformations to cosmetics additives that can cause cancer - much of the world is following the European Union’s lead in adopting stricter safety standards. Contrary to the PR coming from corporate headquarters, business is no less profitable in Europe as a result of high standards - in fact, business is often better, when consumers are confident of product safety. The result of this global double standard: U.S. businesses lose ground to international competitors while U.S. citizens are exposed to an ever growing list of toxic chemicals. A win-win solution for business and consumers is there for the taking, but who will lead the fight?”
Mark Schapiro,
Editorial Director of the Center for Investigative Reporting

Maxine Drake / CME 
Business Development Consultant

Friday, June 3, 2011

Using Retin-A? The Culprit in Premature Aging? Look Closer.

  Retin-A (Tretinoin) Retinoic Acid

Truly Anti-Aging?

Since the late 80's we have been obsessed with the miracle cream known as 
Retin-A/Retinoic Acid/Renova in curing acne and erasing wrinkles. Is it really a miracle cream? Are people really looking younger after repeated use and years of application? There is a clear distinction from what we have been taught/sold vs what we know today. For years I have warned my clients against the use of Retin-A. I have witnessed skin irritations, super sensitivity to sun exposure, waxing, increased hyper-pigmentation, and an overall translucent look to the skin. Accutane (ingested form of Retin-A) has been exposed for it's toxic effect to internal organs. Wouldn't it make sense that topical Retin-A would have an adverse effect on our largest organ (the skin)?
Let me offer you another theory.
DNA Molecule
You body uses retinoic acid in the skin to manufacture collagen. It converts retinol to retinaldehyde, and then into retinoic acid. Retinoinc acid stimulates the fibroblasts(which maintain the structural integrity of the connective tissue). Fibroblasts make collagen, glycosaminoglycans(proteins), and elastin fibers. This all takes place in the dermis. One would think topical application of Retin-A would work wonders to stimulate this process.
Overstimulating the fibroblast receptors weakens their function. Your body makes retinoic acid on site. Your body doesn't store it, so excess amounts sitting on the skin causes irritation.
You will get immediate effects from applying Retin-A, since you are plumping the wrinkle caused by swelling. You can always add inflammation to look good today, but that's not anti-aging. When you put something on your skin that damages your barrier, this will increase free radicals, damage your DNA, making you more susceptible to skin cancers. Years of repeated use will cause the tissue to thin, become more vascular, and increased pigmentation with the use of inflammatory agent.

The large molecule of Retin-A has a hard time penetrating the dermis in which companies use doses of around 5%, allowing it to sit topically, resulting in over exfoliation which compromises the skin's defense.
To effectively reverse aging you have to stimulate collagen without adding inflammation.
Retinaldehyde is the forerunner to Retin-A and has proven effects of stimulating collagen/elastin with minimal irritation. It rebuilds the collagen matrix.  For optimal penetration of Retinaldehyde a liposome technology must be present. I am certainly in agreement with the advantages of using topical serums that have any ingredients which do not excessively exfoliate the skin, or cause inflammation or irritations. I am in favor of medical/pharmaceutical grade skin care products that carry active ingredients which enhance the skin's immune system.
That is true Anti-Aging.

Maxine Drake / CME
Med-Esthetics Consulting

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

The Dangers of Parabens in Your Skin Care Products


Parabens are used in water-based skin care products to kill bacteria but they are highly toxic to the body's cells. Methyl, propyl, ethyl, and butyl parabens are found in many skin care products and cosmetics as a preservative which can be absorbed through the skin. Methylparaben and propylparaben are the most common found, but all are linked to cancer, endocrine disruption, neurotoxicity and skin irritation. Search the  EWG Skin Deep Datatbase .  Similar concentrations or parabens found in cosmetic products have been found in biopsies from breast tumors. Parabens are also found in nearly all urine samples from U.S. adults.

Parabens are found mostly in personal care products such as shampoos, conditioners, shower gels, facial cleansers and scrubs. The concentration limits are recommended for each paraben, yet there is no caution for the use of of multiple parabens in a single product or exposure to parabens from several products by one individual.
Parabens mimic your body's own hormones and can disturb the action of your endocrine system. They cause harm to just about every bodily system such as your ovaries, thyroid, 
hypothalamus, and the male reproductive system.
Parabens enter your bloodstream when rubbed onto your skin. You receive higher concentrations from putting it on your skin than you do from drinking it!
Parabens contribute to estrogenic conditions. Estrogen can be stimulated by absorbing parabens.
Parabens can cause allergic reactions and skin rashes. If your skin care product contains parabens, there is a likelihood it also contains other harmful ingredients.
A 2004 UK study detected traces of five parabens in breast cancer tumors of 19 of the 20 women studied. The study concluded the parabens remained intact. Unaltered by the body's metabolism, which is concerning since it is apparent this chemical can penetrate the skin and remain in breast tissue.

Dangerous synthetic preservatives:

    1. Imidiazolidinyl Urea (Germall 115) and Diazolidinyl Urea (Germall II) Causes contact
      dermatitis. Germall 115 releases formaldehyde over 10°C.
    2. DMDM Hydantoin Highly toxic, causes contact dermatitis, contains formaldehyde. Used in
      shampoos and deodorants.
    3. Methyl, Propyl, Butyl and Ethyl Paraben Toxic, Causes allergic reactions and skin rashes. Used in a huge range of products and is implicated in increasing breast cancer rates when used as a preservative in underarm deodorants.
    4. 2-Bromo-2-Nitro-Propane-1, 3-diol. (Bronopol). Toxic - causes allergic contact dermatitis. Used in face creams, shampoos, mascaras and bath oils.
    5. Benzalkonium Chloride - Highly toxic, primary skin irritant. Used in shampoos, conditioner and deodorants.
    6. Quarternium-15 Toxic, causes skin rashes and allergic reactions
    7. Chloromethylisothiazolinone and Isothiazolinone - Cause contact dermatitis
    8. Methylisothiazolinone and Methylchloroisothiazolinone- Both cause allergies
    9. Butylated Hydroxytoluene (BHT) and Butylated Hydroxyanisole (BHA) - Both cause allergic contact dermatitis - worse BHT is carcinogenic!

Wouldn't it make sense to ban all toxins from our products? Take a look at just a few natural preservatives that cause no threat to the human body:

Tea Tree Oil
Thyme Essential Oil
Rosemary Extract
Grapefruit Seed Extract
Vitamin E
Neem Seed

Maxine Drake / CME
Med-Esthetics Consulting

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Do You Look Tired or Old?

 There might be more to the dark circles under your eyes other than lack of sleep or something you inherit. 
Do you drink enough water per day? How is your diet and exercise? Could your liver, kidneys, and adrenal glands be compromised?
Let's take a closer look.
Traditional Chinese Medicine suggests your dark circles under your eyes are signs from your body letting you know you could have possible liver/kidneys dysfunction or bowel congestion. An  iron deficiency (anemia) may cause a bluish hough below the eyes or even a wheat (gluten) intolerance is suggested. Try eliminating white flour/wheat products from your diet for a few weeks and see if there is improvement. Candida (yeast) will compromise liver/kidney function. If you are bloated, constipated or have skin rashes, you could have Candida, which reduces the absorption of vital nutrients, vitamins, and minerals from your diet.
Dehydration makes dark circles worse. Water helps flush toxins from the liver. Be sure to drink a four ounce glass of water every half hour to equal 16 four-ounce glasses. If you drink more than four ounces at a time it is a bigger strain on your kidneys to filter water that hasn't hasn't had a chance to travel through the lymph system and cleanse body tissues. Proper water intake (4 ounces every 30 minutes) helps maintain the flow of nutrients  and the ability to release waste and toxins from the tissues.
Eating a nutritious diet and vigorous exercise 30 minutes per day not only aids in overall good health, but will help diminish dark circles.
Maxine Drake / CME
Business Development Consultant

    Is Your Sun Screen Killing You?

    No More Toxic Sun Screen!
    I have been studying the hazardous effects from toxic ingredients in many very well known sunscreens! 
    Studies have found that the incidence of skin cancers has increased even as sunscreens have become popular, especially in fair skinned people.
    The Chemical Sunscreen Health Disaster. (informative link including clinical studies and references)
    EWG's List of Worst Sunscreens! (this is a database for any ingredient you wish to research).
    I have found zinc oxide to be one of the best natural sun blocks
    Sunscreen Chemicals Generate Free Radicals
    Most sunscreens contain ethylhexyl salicylate, homosalate, avobenzone, octyl methoxycinnamate, and Oxybenzone-Benzophenone, a powerful free radical generator that is activated by ultraviolet light! Free radicals damage the DNA of cells which produce skin aging and the development of cancer.
    Chemical Sunscreens Increase Risk of Cancer/ Estrogenic
    An observation between 1981-1992 estimated a 17% increase in breast cancer as a result of the influential use of sunscreens over the past decade. Using chemical sunscreens may increase your chances of developing endometriosis, breast cancer, and uterine cancer A clinical study showed the effect of sunscreen s on UV radiation-induced enhancement of melanoma growth in mice.(Journal of National Cancer Institute, Vol.86, No.10.
    Ava Anderson - 21% Zinc. Chemical FREE Sunscreen - Purchase a 3 pack and SAVE!

    Ava Anderson Non-Toxic Sunscreen!
    Ava's chemical free sunscreen is made from NON-nanoparticle zinc oxide (21%), organic fair trade shea butter, organic beeswax, organic cocoa, organic jojoba and organic olive oil.

    Maxine Drake / CME
    Business Development Consultant

    Monday, May 23, 2011

    Learn about the Health/Anti-Aging Benefits of Lymphatic Drainage

    ATZEN Pharmaceutical Skin Care: Health/Anti-Aging Benefits of Lymphatic Drainage: "Anti- Aging Benefit of Facial Lymphatic Drainage Lymph nodes are widely distributed throughout the body with the exception of the central ne..."

    ATZEN Pharmaceutical Grade Skin Care is a paraben FREE antioxidant formulation with natural emulsifiers from olives. ATZEN has scientifically advanced active ingredients (organic when available) derived from sustainable and renewable resources.Maxine Drake & ATZEN Pharmaceutical Grade Skin Care - Know the Difference

    Health/Anti-Aging Benefits of Lymphatic Drainage

    Anti- Aging Benefit of Facial Lymphatic Drainage
    Lymph nodes are widely distributed throughout the body with the exception of the central nervous system.  The role of these nodes is to filter the lymph before it is returned to the circulatory system. Although lymph nodes can increase or decrease in size throughout life, any node that has been damaged or destroyed does not regenerate. The lymphatic system has three main functions, to defend the body against disease, absorb fats from the intestine and transport them to the blood, and maintain fluid balance.

    When the lymph system is working well, we feel healthy, our skin is glowing, and we have a strong defense against illness. When it is blocked or sluggish we can have swelling, feel tired, and be more susceptible to colds and infection. The lymph system removes cell waste, excess fluid, viruses, bacteria, and even abnormal cells such as cancer cells. 
    Poor lymphatic drainage and the accumulation of waste products can be one of the causes of dark circles under the eyes.
    The health benefits of lymphatic drainage throughout the body are immeasurable: 
    • Increases tissue metabolism
    • Improves nutrition in tissue 
    • Reduces edema
    • Reduces pain
    • Induces deep relaxation
    Healthy lymph movement regulates our immune system. In my treatment room I would include manual lymphatic drainage (MLD) in my facials to produce clearer, healthier skin.
    Lymph-Med Machine for Lymphatic Drainage

    The Lymph-Med machine is a valuable tool in ANY professional treatment room since it has a controlled rhythm and pressure, allowing an aesthetician to slide the tubes along the lymph channels with precision. This is so much easier to use and not as taxing on the body. I could only perform 4-5 manual treatments per day, but with the Lymph-Med machine, I could easily treat 20 people per day. The Lymph-Med works 10 times faster. Ask your aesthetician, or dermatologist if they are offering Lymph-Med in their practice. This is extremely beneficial post operative. It will reduce swelling and cut healing time in half. 

    Thursday, May 5, 2011

    Do You Have Youthful Looking Skin?

     For years I have taught my clients the benefits of ingesting certain vitamins, antioxidants, and foods that nourish the skin, promote collagen production and give an overall appearance of a youthful and healthy glow. In my research, the following nutrients are the best to consume for healthy, young-looking skin. Although I am listing food sources below, you may not be getting enough vitamins and minerals since our foods and soil are depleted of nutrients.If you choose any supplements,  I advise visiting your health practitioner for recommended doses.

    Silica:Silica is a trace mineral that strengthens the body's connective tissues - muscles, tendons, hair, ligaments, nails, cartilage, and bone - and is vital for healthy skin. Silica deficiency can result in reduced skin elasticity and can hamper the body's ability to heal wounds. Food sources of silica include leeks, green beans, garbanzo beans, strawberries, cucumber, mango, celery, asparagus and rhubarb. In its natural form, silica is found in the horsetail herb. 

    Zinc: The mineral zinc is an important component of healthy skin, especially for acne sufferers. In fact, acne itself may be a symptom of zinc deficiency. Zinc acts by controlling the production of oil in the skin, and may also help control some of the hormones that create acne. Zinc is also required for proper immune system function, as well as for the maintenance of vision, taste, and smell. Zinc consumption is also strongly linked to a reduction of prostate cancer.
    Foods rich in zinc include fresh oysters, pumpkin seeds, ginger, pecans, Brazil nuts, oats, and eggs. .

    Omega-3 Fatty Acids: Dry, inflamed skin or skin that suffers from the frequent appearance of whiteheads or blackheads can benefit from supplementing with essential fatty acids (EFAs), especially omega-3s. EFAs are responsible for skin repair, moisture content, and overall flexibility, but because the body cannot produce its own EFAs, they must be obtained through the diet.

    The typical American diet is overabundant in omega-6 fatty acids found in baked goods and grains, and lacking in omega-3s, found in cold-water fish such as salmon and mackerel, as well as flaxseeds and safflower oil. Simply balancing the intake of omega-3s with omega-6s can result in smoother, younger-looking skin. EFAs are also available in supplement form - such as fish oil capsules or evening primrose oil - and are effective at treating a wide range of disorders, from depression and cancer to arthritis and heart disease. Good sources of omega-3 oils include chia seeds, flax seeds and, for non-vegetarians, wild-harvested fish oils.

    Selenium: Selenium is an antioxidant mineral responsible for tissue elasticity. It also acts to prevent cell damage by free radicals and is will known to be correlated with a reduction of breast cancer risk. It may play an important role in preventing skin cancer, as it can protect the skin from damage from excessive ultraviolet light.

    Dietary sources of selenium include wheat germ, seafood such as tuna and salmon, garlic, Brazil nuts, eggs, brown rice, and whole-wheat bread. Brazil nuts are perhaps the best source, and eating just 3-4 Brazil nuts per day provides adequate selenium intake for most people. 

    Vitamin C. Among the most important new dermatologic discoveries is the power of vitamin C to counter the effects of sun exposure. It works by reducing the damage caused by free radicals, a harmful byproduct of sunlight, smoke, and pollution. Free radicals gobble up collagen and elastin, the fibers that support skin structure, causing wrinkles and other signs of aging.
    Make sure your diet includes plenty of vitamin-C rich foods (citrus and vegetables, among others), which can replace the loss of the vitamins. through the skin. Vitamin C supplements can also protect skin from sun exposure.
    You can also use a topical vitamin C treatment to encourage collagen production, just as your body does naturally when you are young. 
    Dietary sources include dark leafy greens, broccoli, cauliflower, brussel sprouts, kiwifruit, papaya, oranges, and strawberries.

    Vitamin E. Research shows that, like vitamin C, this potent antioxidant helps reduce the harmful effects of the sun on the skin. According to studies published by the AAD, taking  vitamin E daily appeared to reduce the risk of sun damage to cells as well as reduce the production of cancer-causing cells. Some studies show that when vitamins E and A are taken together, people show a 70% reduction in basal cell carcinoma, a common form of skin cancer.
    Vitamin E can also help reduce wrinkles and make your skin look and feel smoother.
    Excellent sources of Vitamin E include mustard greens, swiss chard, spinach, nuts (almonds, raw), tropical fruits, red bell peppers, avocado.

    Maxine Drake - Clinical Aesthetician - Beauty Advisor

    Sunday, May 1, 2011

    The NEW Ava Anderson Business Starter Kit

    Changes to the Ava Anderson Non-Toxic Business Starter Kit

    The Business Starter Kit has been revised in order for us to better serve our New Ava Anderson Consultants with a full representation of the line and catalogs to make it easier to hit the ground running. Anyone who has joined us as of Tuesday, 4/26 will receive the new kit. Here is what is in the new $99 Business Kit: 6 piece skin care set, one foundation, blush, one lip gloss, one lipstick, one lip balm, the 5 piece travel set (2 oz sizes of Ava body) and 2 oz hand sanitizer, plus 25 catalogs.

    Become a Representative Today!

    Maxine Drake - Business Development Consultant for Ava Anderson

    Wednesday, April 27, 2011

    Alcohol FREE Hand Sanitizer.

     Ava Anderson just launched a Non Alcohol Hand Sanitizer, with organic ingredients. They are so proud to supply you, your families and customer with this fabulous product. Please remember that there are very few competitors in the market (and now we are one of them). Many claim to be natural and use ethanol (same thing as alcohol), some claim to be organic and use benzalkonium chloride -- a "6" (carcinogen) on the database. Most use triclosan, and other harmful toxic chemicals.

    Here is more information that you should be aware of:

    Test results indicate that our sanitizer kills 99.99% of common household and community germs, including those transferred from person to person, from animal to person and from hard and soft surfaces to person. 

    The following pathogens were killed at a percentage equal or greater to 99.99% within 15 seconds after exposure to the product:
    • ·         Gram-positive bacteria, including Staphylococcus aureus
    • ·         Gram-negative bacteria, including E-coli
    • ·         Viruses, including Herpes simplex Type 1 & Human Coronavirus
    • ·         Fungus, including Trichophyton

    Specifically the tea tree and neem in our product and all of the organic essential oils have anti-microbial properties. Some interesting information concerning Alcohol-based hand sanitizers v. Non-Alcohol based hand sanitizers:

    Alcohol is notorious for removing oil from skin.  This oil is one of the body's primary natural defenses against bacteria. Tests demonstrate that repeated use of alcohol based hand sanitizers can actually lead to increased bacteria on the skin over time.  In other words, ongoing use of alcohol-based hand sanitizers become less effective the more frequently they are used. Not to mention, dry ,cracked, damaged skin.

    Subjectively, users of essential oil based waterless hand sanitizers report a far greater level of satisfaction with the condition of their skin and hands.  Almost 50% of individuals using alcohol based hand sanitizers report doing so at the expense of comfort and skin condition. Our AVA Hand sanitizer leaves your hands silky soft, form the organic aloe and essential oils. It is an amazing product, and it smells fantastic.

    For years I have used Tea Tree Oil and Neem in my treatment room. These oils produce amazing results for acne and post waxing for cleansing and inflammation.
    .   Neem's antiseptic properties are gaining recognition against a variety of skin diseases, septic sores, and infected burns. When the leaves are applied in the form of a poultice, it is recommended for boils, ulcers, and eczema. The oil is used for skin diseases such as scrofula, indolent ulcers and ringworm. Neem has been used traditionally in India to treat a host of viral infections and twigs are split and used to brush teeth in more rural areas.

    Tea Tree Oil has been Mother Nature's antiseptic for years. This natural plant oil has scientifically-proven antiseptic and fungicidal properties. It has a great many uses, including acne, vaginal infections, athlete's foot, warts, insect bites, cold sores, minor burns, thrush and chronic fatigue syndrome.. Researches learned that the oil contains a powerful substance called terpinen 4 OL. This is the main ingredient responsible for it's germ-killing powers. In fact, you could think of terpinen 4 OL as Mother Nature's version of turpentine.
    Maxine Drake-Your Beauty Advisor/Clinical Aesthetican