5 Summer Waxing Tips from Shizuka NY

Summer’s finally here! We put together a few tips to help you optimize this season’s wax routine:

1. Wax first, tan second. Wax before getting a tan — wait at least 24 hours before spray tanning or bronzing. Since waxing also exfoliates the skin, it will strip away any color application. Waxing also tends to irritate the skin so if you have sensitive skin, it’s best to wait 3-4 days (or until your skin recovers completely) before tanning.

2. Down time. Waxed skin is highly irritable, especially to sweat, sun exposure and hot water. Wait at least a couple hours before working out or taking a hot shower. If you’re in the sun be sure to take precautions by covering up and using plenty of SPF.

3. Wait. For a wax to be successful, hair needs to be at least ¼ of an inch long. Try waiting 2 – 4 weeks before getting waxed to allow for sufficient hair length.

4. Exfoliate at home. In order to prevent ingrown hairs, wait three days then begin exfoliating the area daily. This will help the hair grow back evenly for your next waxing.

5. No more razors. Shaving can actually irritate hair follicles negating the benefits of waxing. If you stick to a waxing-only regimen, you’ll notice over time that the hair will grow back thinner and finer. In most cases, a waxing will last between 4 to 6 weeks.


If you’ve never waxed before or are concerned about how your skin may react, feel free to call us at (212) 644-7400 to schedule a consultation with Shizuka.


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FDA Issues New Rules for Sunscreen Safety

Protect your skin with a sunscreen with SPF 30 or greater

Protect your skin with a sunscreen with SPF 30 or greaterThe summer solstice today marks the beginning of the season of beaches, parks, and sun. Just in time, the Federal Drug Administration has recently issued new rules that are intended to improve the way sun protection products are marketed and used.


Here are a few important points to keep in mind when purchasing and using sunscreen this summer:

  • SPF only refers to protection from the sun’s UVB rays. In order to prevent sunburn, premature skin aging, and skin cancer, you need broad spectrum UVB and UVA protection.
  • SPF is based on testing that uses large amounts of product on the skin. In order to be effectively protected, apply more sunscreen than you may want to, and more often than you normally would.
  • There is no such thing as a waterproof sunscreen. All sunscreens lose effectiveness when you sweat or swim. In these cases, reapply frequently.
  • There is very little difference between SPF 30 and SPF 50. There is no need to purchase a sunscreen with SPF higher than 50. Rather, look for broad spectrum UVA/UVB protection and reapply frequently.
  • In addition to using sunscreen with SPF 30-50 daily, you should protect your body with clothing and light-blocking hats and umbrellas.

When you venture outdoors this summer, take care of your skin to prevent sunburn, premature aging, and skin cancer.

Recommended Sun Protection Product:

Super Sheer Sunscreen SPF 50+
By DCL Skin Care

DCL Skin Care’s Super Sheer Sunscreen SPF 50+ combines high UVB absorption and powerful UVA blockage for broad spectrum protection in an elegant silky sheer, matte finish that leaves the skin residue free.

The superb photo protective performance of ultra microfine zinc oxide contributes to the high SPF protection while supplemental antioxidants safeguard the skin from environmental free-radical damage.

Size: 1.7 Fl oz / 50 mL
Price: $24.00

Purchase Super Sheer Sunscreen SPF 50+ >>

More about this topic at NYTimes.com >>

More from the FDA >>



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One (More) Reason Not to Tan

We’ve been telling you about the dangers of tanning for awhile now. In case you need a quick refresher, here it is in a nutshell:

  1. Tanning is a MAJOR cancer risk, according to the World Health Organization, along with arsenic and mustard gas, due to the UV rays in sunlight and in tanning beds.
  2. Tanning is your skin’s natural reaction to DEFEND itself from the sun’s UV radiation, not encourage you to stay out longer.
  3. Tanning seriously ages your skin, weakening connective tissues in your skin, causing fine lines and wrinkles as well as hyperpigmentation (sun spots).

Here’s more bad news for the tanners out there. If you’ve been in search of that ever-elusive full body tan, you will be searching a long time, according to a new study.

Published in Experimental Dermatology, the study found that some parts of your body (ex. buttocks) are just less prone to holding a tan. There’s tan through swimwear out there in addition to nude sunbathing, tanning beds, and that guy above. However, our bodies seem to be telling us that there are some places that are just not meant to be tan. Staying out for hours in the sun may not get you closer to the full body tan and it only increases your risk of skin cancer.

So stick to spray tanning or, better yet, no tanning. Keep in mind that skin cancer is on the rise, especially among younger women, and ALWAYS, ALWAYS, ALWAYS protect your skin with a sunscreen of at least SPF 30 daily.

[LiveScience via FoxNews]
Photo Source: DailyStrength


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Twins Study Shows the Effects of Lifestyle on Aging

Twins Study Shows how Sun Exposure, Smoking & Weight affect the appearance of age.

A study this year at Cleveland’s Case Western Reserve University used a unique method to show the effects of lifestyle choices on aging. Researchers photographed and interviewed 186 pairs of twins during the 2006 and 2007 Twins Festival in Twinsburg, OH and compared these data to find clues into how our daily choices affect the way we age.

In the above example, researchers recorded an over-11-year gap in perceived age difference between 61-year-old twin sisters Jeanne (left) and Susan (right). “We don’t have the same taste in men and weather,” says Jeanne who lives in Ohio and has aimed for “as little sun exposure as possible” in contrast with her sun worshiping Floridian counterpart. In addition to her tanning habit, Susan also smoked a pack-and-a-half per day for 16 years during her 20s and 30s.

The evidence of aging is far stronger in twin sister Susan’s hyperpigmentation (sun damage and age spots) and the greater appearance of fine lines and wrinkles under the eyes and around the mouth.


In addition to sun exposure and smoking, another major factor in the appearance of age in the twins was weight. In women below 40, lower weight generally translates to a more youthful appearance.  However, in women over 40, more weight contributes to a younger look by filling in fine lines, wrinkles and skin sagging. In the case of the above 46-year-old twins, Laurie (left) weighs 38 pounds less than her sister Lisa (right) which contributes to her more pronounced wrinkles and sagging in the eye area.

Other factors that could contribute to aging include birth control pills (younger), antidepressants (older) and stress (older). [MSNBC.com]

DCL's Super Sheer Sunscreen

DCL’s Super Sheer Sunscreen SPF 50+

DCL Skin Care’s Super Sheer Sunscreen 50+ combines powerful sun protection in a lightweight and sheer application.
DCL’s Super Sheer Sunscreen SPF 50+ is non-whitening, PABA-free and fragrance-free for all skin types.

Size: 2.5 oz
Price: $24.00


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Green Veggies Used to Inhibit Melanoma


In case you need yet another reason to eat your veggies like mom always told you to, Penn State University has recently found that compounds found in green vegetables such as broccoli and cabbage, when combined with selenium, could be a potent drug to fight melanoma.

So far, the new skin cancer treatment has only been tested on lab mice, but researchers speculate that the new drug could be effectively delivered to humans intravenously, or as an additive in sunscreen products.

Source: Penn State Live


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An Aging Kate Moss Turns Over a New Leaf


Uh-oh!  It looks like years of excessive sun, drinking, and smoking can catch up to even the most beautiful among us!

British supermodel Kate Moss learned this the hard way when she saw pictures of a recent St. Tropez vacation posted online.  35-year-old Kate was shocked to see that her skin had seriously aged.

According to a Daily Mail source:

“Kate didn’t like seeing pictures of the state of her skin while she was on holiday. She knows it’s down to her lifestyle, so she is deciding to try a particular health plan to help regain a fresh look.”

As a result of seeing her deep forehead wrinkles, crow’s feet, and blemishes, Kate has decided to turn over a new leaf and lead a healthier lifestyle by cutting down on the drinking and smoking, revising her diet, and upping her water intake.

These are all great steps and we applaud Kate.  As we’ve stated in previous posts, excessive sun exposure, drinking and smoking can be serious skin-agers.  It’s so important to remember that our lifestyles directly affect the way we look on the outside.  Exposure to the sun’s UV rays leads to wrinkles, sun damage, and potentially skin cancer (also take a look at this post on tanorexia). Too much drinking can dehydrate the body and affect the quality of our regenerative sleep. Smoking robs the body and skin of essential Vitamin C and can also lead to hyperpigmentation and wrinkles.

For anyone feeling like Kate, we recommend microdermabrasion or chemical peeling procedures to even out the skin texture and Botox Cosmetic at our New York City Medical Spa to smooth forehead wrinkles and crow’s feet in addition to leading a healthier lifestyle.

Source: Daily Mail


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Will Ferrell’s Charity Sunscreen Line wants to give you a “Sexy Hot Tan”

Will Ferrell SunscreensCelebrity funny-man Will Ferrell of Anchorman and Saturday Night Live fame uses his best “assets” to support cancer survivors with his new line of sunscreens.

With provocative names such as “Sexy Hot Tan,” “Forbidden Fruit” and “Sun Stroke,” 100% of the proceeds of Ferrell’s signature sunscreens benefit Cancer For College, an organization that provides college scholarships to cancer survivors.  According to CFC’s website, over 10,000 bottles have already been sold.

In true Ferrell form, the descriptions of the SPF 30 sunscreens are equally as hilarious as the very exposing pictures of him on each bottle:

  • Sexy Hot Tan
    Are you Sexy?  Are You Hot? Then who wouldn’t want a sexy, hot tan? This sunscreen is made with our very own streaking strength formula plus one.
  • Sun Stroke
    What golfer wouldn’t want to sport a rich dark tan and add 57 yards to their tee shots?  This sunscreen provides improved accuracy, added distance and the ultimate bronzing power…we think.
  • Forbidden Fruit
    Honestly, the less we say about this one the better for fear of being cast into a pit of fire.

More information about Will Ferrell Sunscreens and Cancer For College at CancerForCollege.org.


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Tanning Beds a Top Cancer Risk Along with Arsenic, Mustard Gas

Tanning Beds Linked to Cancer in New Study

Experts in the cancer branch of the World Health Organization have now moved tanning beds and other forms of ultraviolet radiation into the top cancer risk group along with arsenic, mustard gas, smoking cigarettes and chimney sweeping, among others.

Tanning beds have long been considered “probable carcinogens” likely to lead to skin cancer by the WHO, but this news, published in the medical journal Lancet Oncology, concludes through the analysis of about 20 different cancer studies that skin cancer risk increases by 75% in people who start using tanning beds before the age of 30.

“People need to be reminded of the risks of sunbeds,” remarked Vincent Cogliano, one of the researchers. “We hope the prevailing culture will change so teens don’t think they need to use sunbeds to get a tan.”

Studies show that the use of tanning beds has increased in the under-30 generation, including teens. This is easy to believe due to high visibility of bronzed celebrities gracing our movie theaters and television screens (see our previous post on Tanorexia and UV protection).

Cogliano went on to elaborate that ultraviolet radiation is not healthy in any form, whether it be from a tanning bed or even the sun.  This research only further emphasizes the need for us all to limit sun exposure and to always protect our skin by wearing sunscreen or sunblock daily with an SPF of at least 30. In addition to the cosmetic problems such as hyperpigmentation and wrinkles that prolonged sun exposure can cause, it has now been confirmed what a serious health risk tanning can be.

As an alternative to tanning, the American Cancer Society recommends cosmetic bronzers and self-tanners as an alternative to tanning beds.  Let’s all remember to protect our skin this summer!

More information about this story at USAToday.com.


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Tanorexia: Tanning Addiction and Sun Protection Tips

A really bad tan

What is Tanorexia?

Tanorexia is basically an addiction to sun tanning. Tanorexia is a condition in which a person participates in excessive outdoor sun tanning or use of other skin tanning methods (such as tanning beds) to achieve a darker skin complexion because they perceive themselves as unacceptably pale.

Could that “healthy glow” actually be unhealthy?

Absolutely. Keep in mind that a suntan is your body’s natural way of defending itself from the sun’s harmful ultraviolet (UV) rays.  UV exposure causes the skin to produce more melanin (the pigment that gives your skin its natural color).  While you may enjoy the look of a tan, the UVA and UVB rays also work in ways you may not appreciate as much:

  • UV light weakens connective tissues that give your skin firmness and elasticity, resulting in wrinkles and thinner, more translucent skin.
  • Hyperpigmentation—usually seen as small dark spots or freckles—occurs when an excess of melanin is produced in these small patches of skin.
  • In extreme cases, overexposure to the UV light can lead to skin cancer.  According to the American Cancer Society’s Cancer Facts and Figures 2009, over 70,000 Americans will be diagnosed with skin cancer this year, and New York State ranks fourth in the nation for the most estimated new cases in 2009 following California, Florida and Texas.*

America’s Next Top Tanorexic is…

Some very tan celebs include Lindsay Lohan, Victoria Beckham, Amanda Bynes, Pamela Anderson, Paris Hilton and Donatella Versace

It is not surprising that California ranks #1 for melanoma risk with the great number of tanning salons and the abundance of very tanorexic celebs such as the ones pictured above, including Victoria Beckham.  However, BeautyNewsNYC also reported last year that there are a growing number of celebrities who are staying away from tanning beds and “fake bakes” and sporting more Geisha-like porcelain complexions (think Anne Hathaway, Julianne Moore, Nicole Kidman and Dita von Teese).

Tanorexia Makes You Look Old

As further proof of the need to protect your skin from sun damage, scientists have found through computer imaging that hyperpigmentation directly influences how old we appear to others.  Using digital images of 169  women, aged 17-70, the color distribution on each woman’s face was imposed on a generic 3-D form devoid of fine lines, wrinkles, and other traditionally age-defining characteristics. Faces with more even color distributions were perceived to be healthier and younger in appearance.

Protect Your Skin This Summer!

Summer is the time for New Yorkers to flock outdoors en masse to sunny destinations such as Central Park, Coney Island, the Hamptons and Jersey Shore to soak up those intoxicating rays and work on their tans.  As great as it feels to be outdoors during the summer, be careful (i.e. not a “tanorexic”) and protect your skin every time you are outside with these summer skincare tips:

  • Minimize sun exposure, especially between 10am – 4pm when the sun is at its brightest.
    Always protect your skin by applying sunscreen 30 minutes before you step outside.
  • If your schedule requires you to be in the sun for extended periods of time, wear protective clothing such as hats, long-sleeved shirts, and long pants.
  • Remember that you can burn as easily on an overcast day as a sunny one.
  • Be cautious of reflective environmental surfaces such as sand, water, concrete, and snow as these can multiply the power of the sun’s light.
  • Stay away from tanning salons, tanorexic conventions, and UV tanning beds, and beware of false advertising claims that indoor tanning with UVA light is safer than sunlight.
  • Teach children the dangers of tanorexia and the benefits of proper sun protection from a young age. The effects of sun damage accumulate over their lifetimes, and it is never too early to create good habits.
  • Although darker skin is less likely to burn, it is still important for those with darker complexions to protect their skin with sunscreen to prevent skin cancer, wrinkles and other signs of aging.

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New Super Sheer Sunscreen SPF 50+ from DCL

The temperature is beginning to rise in New York City and it especially important to think about protecting your skin from the sun’s ultraviolet rays.

Dermatologic Cosmetic Laboratories (DCL) has just introduced a new sun protection product, Super Sheer Sunscreen SPF 50+. This silky-smooth sunscreen carries a rating of PA+++ based on its score of 16 in the Persistent Pigment Darkening Test adopted by the Japan Cosmetic Industry Association (the minimum score for PA+++ is 8).  What this translates to is superior sun protection in a sheer formula that leaves a non-whitening matte finish with no sticky residue.

This quick drying and fragrance free sunscreen also contains supplemental antioxidants to safeguard the skin from environmental free radicals.

Shizuka highly recommends Super Sheer Sunscreen SPF 50+ ($24.00) this summer.  It is available for purchase, along with other sunscreens and sunblocks online, in the spa, or by phone at 212.644.7400.


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[Reader Questions] Secrets to Beautiful Skin, Part 1

Dear Shizuka,

Other than protecting my skin from the sun’s UV rays, do you have any other secrets for beautiful skin?

Skin Care Fan

Dear Skin Care Fan,

Thank you for posting our first question! It’s true that sun protection is so important to keep your skin looking beautiful, especially during the summer.  Here is some other advice to keep your skin looking youthful and radiant:

  • Hydrate Your Body, Hydrate Your Skin
    Never forget that so much of your body (including your skin) is water.  Drinking enough water is so important to maintaining a healthy body and also keeping your skin healthy. Use moderation when eating and drinking things that can dehydrate you such as salty foods, alcohol and coffee, and always choose water above processed soft drinks and juice products.
  • Eat Well, Look Great
    Having a diet that is rich in vitamins and minerals makes you feel and look better and this also applies to your skin.  Raw vegetables and fruits carry so many of the necessary nutrients our bodies and skin need to perform at their best.
  • Put Out Those Butts
    Smoking has many health risks, and among these it also causes the skin to age more rapidly. Smoking can affect the levels of Vitamin C, collagen and blood flow in your skin that can result in increased fine lines and wrinkles.
  • Remember that Skincare Should be Seasonal
    If you are using the same skincare routine all yearlong, you are not getting the most benefit from your efforts.  As the seasons change and temperature and humidity vary you also need to make small changes to your routine.  For example, a moisturizer that made your skin feel amazing all winter long might now leave you feeling a little oily or congested in the NYC summer, and you might want to search for a lighter one.  A good rule of thumb is to change your skincare routine when you change your wardrobe.  For more tips on this subject, please take a look at our post on seasonal skincare for the summer.
  • Have a Facial Treatment
    Having a facial treatment with a licensed skin care professional is a great way to keep your skin clear and balanced.  At Shizuka New York Day Spa, our facial treatments such as the Classic Facial (50 minutes, $110) include many important steps such as a thorough examination and cleansing of the skin, exfoliation, pore cleansing, facial massage to stimulate circulation, and hydration.  Some of these steps are best left to a professional, and I recommend you come in and try a facial treatment here such as the Classic Facial.

In case you can’t make it to the spa soon, here’s some quick advice on giving yourself an at-home DIY facial that I gave to Marie Claire magazine:

“For a rejuvenating facial, start by cleansing twice.  The first time removes surface debris; the second time deep-cleans skin.  Open your pores by placing a steaming hand towel on your face for a minute.  Next, exfoliate with an enzyme mask; rinse off with cold water to close pores.  Finally, smooth on a light moisturizer using upward strokes.”

Stay tuned for Part 2 of this post in which I will discuss my favorite anti-aging ingredients you should look for in skincare products, and keep the questions coming by posting a comment below or emailing [email protected].

Shizuka Bernstein


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