Menopause, Health & Wellbeing Product Review 2015

By Aimee Blakemore – Stratum C Brand Manager Stratum C Menopause Skin Care has recently been partnering with other organisations to find the best solutions for menopause management and we have had the opportunity to test some fabulous products that … Continue reading

3 Biggest Autumn Skincare Problems & How To Solve Them

It is that time of year again where Mother Nature is having hot flushes of her own and does not know whether she is coming or going. Continue reading

Stratum C Menopause Skin Care Key Ingredients

As seen in Daily Mail, Daily Mirror, YOU Magazine, Harper’s Bazaar, Woman’s Own Mag, My Weekly Magazine, The Lady, Beauty Shortlist, Daily Express, Natural Health Magazine… Continue reading

Should we be worried about chemical endocrine disruptors being used in our cosmetics?

There has recently been a flurry of news articles stating that we should be wary of some beauty products which may contain chemicals such as phthalates. There are some chemicals that we come across everyday in the environment, plastics and other household items which have traces of harmful ingredients – but we want to reassure you that it is not likely that you will come across these in your beauty regime. Here’s why…

Ingredients such as DEHP (diethylhexyl phthalate), are banned from use in Cosmetics in the UK and the rest of the EU.

A recent study from Washington University School of Medicine found a link between a group of chemical ingredients and early menopause – which are sometimes known as endocrine disruptors. These chemicals can be found in some household products, but these are more likely to be strong cleaning products, than the type you lather onto your skin.

In the US, it is not illegal to use substances like DEHP in cosmetics, however these products would not be allowed to be sold in the EU due to the regulations currently in place. When talking to Cosmetics Design, Dr Chris Fowler – Director General of CTPA said, “DEHP is not expressly forbidden in the US and so it is possible some companies continue to use it, though companies making the same product for the US and EU could not do so because DEHP is expressly forbidden in the EU.”

Flower continues, “At no time do the authors of the study draw a link between their findings and ingredients in make-up and personal care products, as suggested in some of the alarming headlines.”

A senior author from the study, Amber Cooper, MD, an assistant professor of obstetrics and gynaecology, said, “This study doesn’t prove causation, but the associations raise a red flag and support the need for further research.” 15 of the 111 chemicals tested, showed the need for further investigation.

The findings do however, bring to light the concerns over cosmetic production and show that consumers should be made more aware of the implications of their purchase. We have put together some tips to help make sure you can reduce the contact you have with harmful chemicals and make smart choices about your cosmetic products.

1. Read the ingredients lists on every cosmetic product you buy. If you are unsure about a particular ingredient and want to find out more about the impact it will have on your skin and body, visit the EWG Cosmetics database which is the largest cosmetics and ingredients database. http://www.ewg.org

2. Be careful where and who you buy your products from. Make sure that the company you buy from have recommendations and good reviews in the media, or from secondary retailers or consumers. Buy your cosmetics from reliable sources and if you are unsure about a product or company, look them up online. If you choose to buy products outside of the EU, check the ingredients list before you buy.

3. When you are using household products – make sure you wear gloves to minimise the direct contact with chemicals on the skin as these can be absorbed and cause possible health issues. Always follow the safety and storage advice on the container.

4. Recycle, but do not re-use. Some types of plastic container can contain chemicals which filter into your food and drink when left under heated conditions. Avoid re-heating food in plastic containers, and do not re-use drink’s bottles that have been exposed to heat.

5. Do not put plastic in your mouth. Some types of plastic until recently, were still used in the making of children’s toys, for example, and some of us may take to chewing on accessories like bits of stationery, where we can absorb the nasty chemicals.

6. Know your chemicals. By educating yourself on what’s good or bad for your body, you can avoid any nasty trips to the doctor. For example, not all phthalates are harmful and whilst some phthalates may be found in lipstick, they will not be the harmful type that may also be found in toilet cleaner. Not all man-made chemicals are bad for you, but there may still be some that you would rather avoid.

All ingredients in Stratum C Menopause Skin Care products are available on the website. Visit http://www.stratumc.com or feel free to contact Forme Laboratories for any more information regarding the products and ingredients. All Stratum C products are phthalate, paraben, DHA, BHA, BHT, formaldehyde and MI free and use only the gentlest of preservatives.

References

http://www.cosmeticsdesign-europe.com/Formulation-Science/Study-links-early-menopause-to-everyday-exposure-but-NOT-cosmetics/?utm_source=newsletter_daily&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=30-Jan-2015&c=ZPxihWYgBc3povPQwG2Ou5nybz5Dm1Ja

http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/world/chemicals-in-lipstick-and-cleaning-products-linked-to-early-menopause/story-fnb64oi6-1227200533941?utm_content=SocialFlow&utm_campaign=EditorialSF&utm_source=TheAustralian&utm_medium=Twitter&nk=94127f44bfe740d018fb6b8a79c8500d

http://www.ewg.org/skindeep/

 

Hyaluronic Acid: What is it? How can it help during menopause?

Hyaluronic Acid is known by many names – Hyaluron, Hyaluronan, ‘HA’ and Sodium Hyaluronate. It’s reputation for being ‘the anti-ageing miracle ingredient’ in recent years has made it a must have for beauty buff’s and skin care companies alike. It … Continue reading

The Benefits of Aloe Vera

The Benefits of Aloe Vera

We have all heard of Aloe Vera, the plant used for its therapeutic properties and popularly used as a natural emollient, due to it being gentle, calming and soothing making it the perfect choice for skincare. Aloe, or ‘Aloe Barbadensis’, is full of nutritional benefits for your body and very popular amongst skin care manufacturers as it is packed with vitamins, minerals, enzymes and amino acids. It is also a perfect astringent, making Aloe the essential ingredient for a toner due to its deep cleaning, hydrating, moisturising and rejuvenating effects.

ID-10076222With so many choices out there, it can be difficult choosing which skin care product is best for you. Having the right levels of Aloe Vera and other active and natural ingredients in your skincare regime will make all the difference.

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Aloe has mild healing qualities and is also known to kill bacteria, and when used as part of a skin toner, it delivers all the benefits into freshly cleansed skin.

Toners gently close the pores,  so using Aloe will confidently leave the skin perfectly clean, nourished and healed. Aloe Vera has properties which allow it to reach deeper body tissues, taking all the nutrients of the Aloe into the skin. It also helps to retain moisture in damaged tissue; the penetrating power of Aloe allows water and other moisturisers to sink deeply into the skin, therefore also making it ideal to use before applying your face cream. Collagen is a big factor in preventing skin ageing during menopause and Aloe Vera has been found to increase the production of fibroblast cells, these are the cells responsible for for producing collagen and it has been known to increase by up to eight times as much as normal cell production.

mailoutimagetonerStratum C Calming Toner uses a high level of active ingredients to give you the highest quality products. As well as Aloe Vera, which gives it a natural green hue, it also contains Hyaluron, Papaya, Cucumber, Sage and Orange Flower which all help to enhance the delivery of Coenzyme Q10 into the dermis. CoQ10 is an important anti-oxidant ingredient used in our Calming Toner, this active ingredient will prevent dry skin, ageing and a dull complexion by powerfully combating free radicals. Stratum C Calming Toner compliments our existing Gentle Cleanser with Rose Hip Seed Oil, giving you a complete regime for beautifully clean skin. Use the toner morning and night, after cleansing to deeply clean the pores, remove make up and bacteria, leaving it soft and replenished.

To purchase the Calming Toner or any item from the Stratum C Menopause Skin Care range, please visit www.stratumc.com.

If you would like to be added to Stratum C’s mailing list to receive our free monthly newsletter, there are no obligations and we won’t share your details with anyone else, all you have to do is sign up using the link below. We look forward to sending you lots of helpful information, please click on the link and fill in your details – http://eepurl.com/MKAUj.

Watch out for harmful ingredients in skin care products

ID-100115127There has recently been a lot in the media about the results of using harmful ingredients in skin care and cosmetic products, due to the adverse effects they can have on your health. EU regulations now do not permit the use of some substances such as methylisothiazolinone (MI), which was in the news back in September following an ‘epidemic’ of allergic reactions as a result of being used in many women’s skin care products.

A recent article by American industry professional Judith Lennox, who has 40 years experience working in aesthetics, has told of the questions she often gets asked by her clients about the types of ingredients to avoid. She goes into detail about the companies that she believes are now abiding by the EU regulations and which are not, and is very knowledgable about the effects that these different ingredients can have, such as the use of parabens, dioxane and formaldehyde which actually lock in toxins in the skin in their attempt to lock in moisture, which can actually cause the skin to become unhealthy or age more easily.

STRATUM_2 copyShe then discusses the use of collagen. This is obviously a subject that our team here at Stratum C know a lot about, and we can confirm that what Judith says about topical collagen creams is true. When you apply creams to your skin that contain actual collagen, it creates a layer of film that suffocates the skin, as collagen is a “fibrous protein that is too large to penetrate the skin”. This is where creams such as Stratum C are much better for your skin, as Stratum C helps your skin to generate it’s own collagen naturally, and does not include collagen itself. This is caused by applying our unique combination of peptides, which are made up of naturally occurring amino-acids, which are present in the body until you reach a certain age. Usually as you get older, your body’s production of collagen and amino acids declines, often due to a change in hormones. Hyaluronic acid is also naturally occurring in the body, and is also present in Stratum C in large quantities, which helps to lock in moisture instead of creating a barrier on your skin’s surface.

STRATUM_4 copyTherefore, you should watch out for these harmful ingredients and avoid using topical creams that actually contain collagen as they may do more damage than good. We are pleased that professionals like Judith are able to share their knowledge with the millions of women that buy skin care products, as many are not aware of the effects that using these ingredients can have on your skin and on the rest of your body in fact. Aluminium is often used in anti-perspirants and has been linked to Alzheimer’s disease, whilst parabens have links to several different types of cancer. You should always do your research before you start to use a new brand or decide to change your skin care regime.

Next time you go shopping for cosmetics, make sure you read the label and if you have skin care concerns, ask a health professional for advice. Choosing your products carefully could save you money and often, spending a little more on good skin care products can be more of an investment and sometimes save you money in the long run, not to mention that this means you will be using the highest quality ingredients that your skin deserves.

To find out more about Stratum C products, please visit our website, http://www.stratumc.com.

To read the original article by Judith Lennox, click the link below:

http://www.tcpalm.com/news/2013/nov/13/chemicals-in-skin-products-may-do-more-harm-than/

Middle aged? Go Mediterranean… the diet that prolongs your life.

mediterranean-mapWell, that may not be completely true… but it seems to be a current fad that we have seen a lot of people talking about – even scientists and health professionals. It seems that if we learn a thing or two from those that live nearer to the equator, we may just add a few years of fighting fit onto our lifeline.

The mediterranean diet is commonly undertaken in the countries to the south of Europe, near the mediterranean, obviously. The diet consists of meals rich in colourful vegetables, not too much meat, and plenty of oily foods that are great for your skin. What you didn’t know was that eating all manner of wholegrains and natural fatty acids (such as those found in avocado) can prevent you from getting all sorts of nasty diseases, and as the cereal adverts keep telling us, they are also good for your heart.

According to a study carried out by the University of Bordeaux and the Harvard School of Public Health, the women in the surveys that were more healthy tended to eat more fish, fruit and vegetables and consumed less red meat and alcohol. The study was carried out on over 10,000 women and shows that when you are mindful of what you eat, it can benefit you in more ways than you thought possible. It can even help you prevent Alzheimer’s.

Our Lifestyle tips page contains lots of helpful pointers to help improve the quality of your skin, and food is a big contender in the skin care arena. You should always drink plenty of water and try to avoid consuming too much dairy, alcohol and red meat as these can all cause blemishes and ageing of the skin. Also try to avoid smoking as this will definitely age you, not to mention all the other dreadful things it can cause!

We have put together a few links to some tasty mediterranean recipes for you to try, so that you can incorporate a bit more colour into your diet, and hopefully add a few more years onto a healthy life. Enjoy!

Recipe Links:

http://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/collection/mediterranean

http://www.eatingwell.com/recipes_menus/collections/healthy_mediterranean_recipes

http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/wordofmouth/2013/feb/27/ten-great-mediterranean-recipes

 

To see the original article from the Daily Express, visit the link below:

http://www.express.co.uk/news/health/441183/Go-on-a-Mediterranean-diet-in-middle-age-for-a-healthy-long-life

Mandy Appleyard writes new column on Menopause

Last week following the end of World Menopause Month in October, something magical happened in the world of menopausal news. Journalist Mandy Appleyard, who currently writes for Femail, ‘came-out’ about her own menopause and has agreed to write an occasional column about the progress of her symptoms, allowing us to follow her experiences and compare what it is like to be a modern day menopausal woman.

Here at Stratum C, we are all for women talking openly about menopause, as let’s face it, all women have this in common and we shouldn’t have to feel like we can’t discuss it openly! I have often wondered why menopause has been a bit of a taboo? Could it be due to the intimate nature of certain symptoms?

Menopause is something that all women will experience and is often more troublesome for certain ladies than others, which can be determined by all sorts of extenuating circumstances such as hysterectomy or simply by age, whether it be early or late. For most, the first signs of menopause are unpleasant, such as constantly feeling like your internal thermostat is broken and stuck on max. Suddenly, you may start feeling as though you don’t understand the fundamental demands of your body anymore as the process of menopause means that in some cases, you may have to start taking care of your body quite differently to how you did before.

Though, Mandy Appleyard is not the only one to speak out as of late, as you know, Linda Barker has also admitted to being menopausal and is a great lover of our very own menopause skin products from the Stratum C range. We have also seen Patsy Kensit talk about her own experiences on TV and we have noticed an amazing trend of menopause related interest in the media over the last few months, which we think is fantastic. We thank Mandy Appleyard for helping to break down the stigma surrounding menopause and will eagerly await her next column article to find out her viewpoints, but also for a mood lift, due to her very entertaining way of putting it.

To see this week’s story, click on the link below, where you can find a few positives about the menopause to put you in a good mind set for the start of the week. Enjoy!

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-2486765/The-Menopause-Diary-Why-glum-The-change-saves-1-620.html