beauty solutions

Product Review: Avant Charcoal Age Defying Masque

Several months back. I was contacted by the Founder and Owner of Avant Skin Care, Jeanne Oberstar, to see if I would be interested in trying their Charcoal Exfloiating Age Defying Masque, in exchange for a review.  As I’m always trying new beauty products and Charcoal Masks are very popular, I agreed.

The packaging is clean and simple. It comes with a Thank you card and instructions. I was very happy to learn that this mask does not harden like many charcoal masks on the market that have been reported to rip off your skin.

All Avant products are made in Florida, USA which is a huge plus.

I contacted Jeanne to learn more about the mask and her company before I agreed to try it.

Jeanne told me that her inspiration for starting Avant Goods came from dealing with many side effects of thyroid disease.  She wanted to create a line of skin care products that were non-toxic, non-endrocine disrupting, and healing.

To differentiate Avant’s Charcoal Masque from other facial skin care masks on the market, Jeanne told me that it has contains botanical oils that heal and hydrate. The mask  detoxifies, exfoliates and is a crème consistency that does not harden like some of the other charcoal skin care masks on the market. The list of ingredients are quite extensive and are sourced from around the world. However, according to Jeanne if any of the ingredients are  readily available in the US they will try to source them domestically.  Avant’s main ingredients in their mask is Kaolin Clay and Bamboo Charcoal. The white  Kaolin Clay  base has many healing properties, including purifying and detoxifying the skin. Kaolin Clay has many potent antioxidants. It helps clearing up breakouts, exfoliates dead skin cells and soothes irritated skin.

The Bamboo Charcoal, known as the “Black Diamond” in Asia, contains 300 types of micro-organic minerals that draw out toxins to clear pores allowing them to breathe. Avant’s sources the Bamboo from South Korea.

The Avant Masque contains:

(98.5% Naturally Derived / 70% Organic) Ingredients: Deionized Aqua (Water), Organic Barbadensis Leaf Juice (Aloe), Organic Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower Oil), Glyceryl Stearate, Kosher Vegetable Glycerin, Octyl Palmitate, Organic Cocos Nucifera (Coconut Oil), Kaolin, Theobroma Cacao (Cocoa Butter), Cetyl Alcohol, Potassium Stearate, Organic Beeswax, Pumice, Charcoal Powder (Bamboo Charcoal Powder), Methylsulfonylmethane (MSM), Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate (Vitamin C), Sodium Magnesium Silicate, Magnesium Aluminum Silicate, Cellulose Gum, Purified Smectite Clay, Citrus Limon (Lemon Essential Oil), Eucalyptus Globulous (Eucalyptus Essential Oil), Organic Syzysium Aromaticum (Clove), Eugenia Caryophyllata (Clove Essential Oil-active, nosmell), Organic Juniperus Communis (Juniper), Hamamelis Virginiana (Witch Hazel), Organic Capsicum Annuum var. Aannuum (Cayenne), Organic Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba Oil), Calophyllum Tacamahaca (Tamanu Oil), Spirulina Maxima (Spirulina), Macrocystis Pyrifera (Kelp), Organic Borago Officinalis (Borage Oil), Organic Linum Usitatissimum (Flax Seed Oil), Organic Oenothera Biennis (Evening Primrose Oil), Organic Rosa Canina (Rose Hip Oil), Panthenol (Vitamin B5), Organic Arnica Montana (Arnica), Organic Lavandula Angustifolia (Lavender), Organic Calendula Officinalis (Calendula), Organic Anthemis Nobilis (Chamomile), Grapeseed Oil, Macadamia Integrifolia (Macadamia Nut Oil), Sodium Carbomer, Phenoxyethanol, Ethyl Hexyl Glycerin, Organic Centella Asiatica (Gotu Kola Extract), Organic Equisetum Arvense (Horsetail Plant Extract), Organic Pelagonium Gravoleons (Geranium Extract), Organic Taraxacum Officinalis (Dandelion Extract).

I’ve been using the Avant Charcoal Masque several times a month. Upon opening the jar, the mask looks grey and very creamy. I like to have a home spa day on the weekends and use the mask as one of  my skin care routines. I used a mask brush and coated my skin avoiding the area directly under my eyes. It was easy and fun to apply. The instructions say to rub it into the skin. But, I prefered to apply it with a brush first. I will try it next time on my neck and chest.  I’d actually love to coat my entire body, but I’d use up the jar and it would make a mess in my bathroom. The instructions say to keep it on for 10-20 minutes, I kept it on for 40 minutes with no adverse reactions.  It washed off easily, but since it the mask is dark grey I made sure I rinsed it all off using a dark-colored wash cloth to gently remove it. My skin felt soft and had a nice pink glow afterwards.

I have not had any break-outs or irritation from the product and my skin tends to be sensitive to new skin care products. The price point is good at $27.99 for a 4 oz jar. The jar should last quite some time, if covered tightly and kept away from moisture.  As with any skin care products, it should be discarded after 2 years.  Please check with your plastic surgeon or dermatologist if you plan on using this product after any cosmetic procedures.

Given the quality, ingredients and price point, it’s a good buy.  I’d give it a try!!

Click her to purchase  Avant Products. 

Disclaimer: The featured product in this post was provided to me free of charge by the manufacturer. All opinions expressed in this review are my own and not influenced in any way by anyone. This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive a commission for purchases made through this link.

Choosing Skincare Products: Ten Tips


http://fightfinelines.com/2011/05/19/top-10-tips-for-choosing-skincare-products-that-work/

“No more wrinkles in 6 days” ….“See the reduction of fine lines in less than 10 days”… “Dermatologists tested” “Clinically Proven” “Clinical Studies”…

Buyer beware. Magazines are full of claims from manufacturers touting new technologies and advances in skin care products. There is so much marketing hype today around skin care products that promise results, that it’s hard to know what really works.

If this wasn’t confusing enough, we are now in an age of ever-emerging new technologies and anti-aging breakthroughs. From “micro-beads” to stem cells, products are getting more and more complex both in what they’re made of and also how they are delivered to your skin. As exciting as this seems, it’s also questionable whether or not these new advances are really going to live up to their claims.Cosmeceuticals, high-end “Dr” brands, and everyone under the sun claiming to have the latest skin care can leave you   searching for the next best thing before you even get to the register. Even with seemingly potent active-ingredients, there is little regulation on what claims companies can make. You have to wonder, was the entire formulation tested or just the active ingredient? Who was the product tested on? If it was tested in a lab, how do we know it actually works on human skin cells?

So, what should you be on the lookout for to help you cut through the skin care product clutter?

(more…)

Rejuvenate Your Skin: Micro-needling New

Does the thought of tiny needles rolling across your skin scare you? No need to fear. Micro-needling  is actually an age-old treatment used to treat scars and stimulate collagen and ellastin.

Many clinical studies have shown that micro-channeling (Needling) is more effective than other methods of treatment including laser resurfacing, chemical peels and microdermabrasion.

Micro-needling or micro-channeling uses a micro-needle roller to painlessly penetrate the epidermis in order to stimulate collagen and elastin growth and to create clear routes to increase absorption of topical serums into the skin. This system also benefits acne scars.

Micro-needing became popular in 2004-2005, however the theory of puncturing the skin has been around for a long time.  Have you ever punctured a zit?  Afterwards, the healing process begins.  Tattooing is also a form of micro-needling with a penetration depth of about 1.2 mm.

Histological findings of skin tissue that was microneedled with 0.5 to 1.5 mm long needles (according to facial skin thickness) revealed that they stimulated massive growth of elastin- and collagen fibres (in some cases up to 1,000%). The inventor called this form of microneedling COLLAGEN-INDUCTION-THERAPY (CIT in short). In the Nineties the Canadian surgeon Camirand used tattoo-guns without colour pigments to treat operation scars after plastic surgery. His intention was to perforate scars to take off their tension. They became softer and pigmentation sometimes came back. This post-operative microneedling technique soon disappeared from the operation rooms because it was a tedious job without income.

There are several micro-needling devices on the market for at home use.  One product such system  DermaFIT™ combines a dermaroller with a topical peptide serum to encourage the growth of collagen, elastin, keratin skin to give you a more youthful, smooth appearance.   What I like about this system is that it comes with a topical peptide that has been specifically formulated for micro-needling, plus a sunblock and instructions.  Your skin will be more sensitive to after each treatment. The roller is easy to maneuver and the needles  are .25mm.   It takes a little practice to learn how deep to press to the roller into your skin to get a uniform treatment.

The DermaFit is only sold to medical practices and spas, the aesthetician or MD demonstrate will demonstarte how to  it effectively for home use.

An at home micr-needling treatment will not take the place of an in -office micro-needling treatment with DermaFrac, a new micro-needling office treatment.

I will post an update on this treatment is a couple of weeks.