Meet Cecilia Wong. A Manhattan-based lifelong health and wellness enthusiast with a mission of offering natural but effective alternative skincare solutions. Cecilia treats skin concerns from the root cause using Traditional Chinese Medicine philosophy and supplementing with her holistic skincare line. Cecilia has a long list of celebrity clients who swear by her non-invasive, holistic approach to deliver long-lasting results. The universe brought Cecilia and Goldfaden MD together in a perfect synergy that has turned into a working and personal friendship. We highly suggest you run don’t walk to get a treatment from this truly talented healer.

We sat down to get a little sneak peek into Cecilia’s wellness world.

 

Where did you grow up?

I came to the US from Hong Kong when I was 9 years old. Growing up, I moved a lot.. from Long Island to Queens and finally settling in NJ.

How did you get interested in skincare and all things wellness?

It started at a young age. Growing up, I battled with acne and pigmentation. My mom always told me to eat more fruit and vegetables and she made meals that incorporated a lot of Chinese herbs in it.  I was in the kitchen prepping a dish of fruit, I started playing around with papaya and blueberries, mashed them together and used it as a face mask. That immediate feeling of coolness on my skin and the redness, inflammation was much calmer. I did that for a week and my skin slowly healed. That was my aha moment, I knew then I wanted to help other people with their skin problems.

What are the most important steps for healthy skin? 

The important steps to healthy skin are really a combination of taking care of ourselves both internally and on the outside. It’s nourishing our organs with the right nutrients and vitamins that our body needs and using those same nutrients on our skin.

Tell us about your most popular treatment:

My most popular treatment is lymphatic drainage facial. It’s a combination of diamond tip microdermabrasion, manual lymphatic drainage massage, gua sha techniques, meridian point acupressure, micro-current and a blast of hyperbaric oxygen. This is great for all skin types with immediate results. This treatment helps with lifting and toning of the facial muscles and the skin, eliminating excess water (puffiness) and toxins, and contours the face.

Why is microcurrent so important for skin health? 

Think of this as a workout for the face. We exercise our bodies but we often neglect the face. Micro-current facials lift and tone the facial muscles, droopy eyes work as lymphatic drainage by eliminating excess water and toxins. It also contours jawline, and cheekbones. In addition, micro-current also helps with eliminating sinuses.

Which ingredients are vital to overall skin health? 

There are several vital ingredients that are great for skin health. Vitamin A, B, and C are just a few of our skin needs. Regular use of these vitamins will help to fight free radicals, sun damage that causes fine lines, wrinkles, and premature aging.

Which products do all your clients walk out of treatment with?

Our star product is the Black Currant Serum. Every client has this and is obsessed with it. Other products that I’ve introduced to my clients are Goldfaden MD’s Doctor’s scrub and the Energetic Eye Cream. They can’t live without it.

What is the secret to having healthy youthful skin as we age? 

I think the secret is Simplicity.  Using what your skin needs at that moment and not overusing skincare products.

What is your personal take on wellness in your everyday life? 

Maintaining a healthy lifestyle is the key to happiness. When you eat well, take care of your skin and body; you’ll look and feel good. In turn, that makes you a happier person.  Happiness makes a person more youthful.

How do you start your day and finish your day? 

I wake up, brush my teeth, wash my face with a Vitamin C cleanser, then I apply a toner, eye cream, and massage my face a few minutes with a serum. I also dry brush my face for a few minutes. Then, I take a shot of chlorophyll and a glass of lemon water. For breakfast, I make oatmeal with chia seeds adding collagen powder and wheat germ as a topping. Then I have a cup of ginger tea with black sugar. After that, I either head to hot yoga or do a home workout with Figure 8. This is a great dance fitness exercise that really wakes up my body. Take a shower and head to work. For lunch, I usually have quinoa with veggies or homemade Chinese food (mostly veggies, melons and chicken) with brown rice. For a snack, I usually eat an apple and sometimes, I’ll sneak in a few pieces of cookies. When I get home, I head to a barre class. When I arrive home, I take care of my dogs first. Then, I wash my face with Vitamin C cleanser, exfoliate with Goldfaden MD Doctor’s Scrub, apply the Detox Facial Mask, toner, eye cream, serum, and moisturizer. For dinner, since I don’t like to eat the same things all the time, it’s always the different style of cuisine but, I always have a dish of veggies, meat (usually fish or chicken) and three times of out of the week, I’ll make an herbal soup.  An hour later, I take another shot of chlorophyll and make myself a cup of maca golden milk. And I’m in bed by 9:30 pm.  Throughout the day, I’ll drink either water or different types of teas (dandelion, milk thistle, or green tea).

The summer sun is hot and temperatures are high. Dehydration can occur quickly and be very dangerous both internally and externally. Dehydration occurs when the body loses water and electrolytes and cannot function properly. Many regular outdoor activities (running, golf, even hanging by the pool) can lead to dehydration during the summer months. Stay hydrated internally by drinking enough fluids, especially water, and eating foods with high water content. Your skin also needs hydration; look for products high in hyaluronic acid as this miracle ingredient holds up to 100x it’s own weight in water (which will keep skin plump, hydrated and youthful-looking). Skin is left supple and hydrated.

What to Eat to Stay Hydrated

  • Leafy greens
  • Watermelon
  • All berries
  • Lettuce
  • Raw spinach
  • Tomato sauce
  • Bell peppers
  • Cucumbers
  • Pineapple
  • Coconut water-potassium, electrolytes
  • Bananas-potassium
  • Avocado
  • Salmon

“Dr. G’s tip: “Add a pinch of Himalayan rock salt to your water. Himalayan salt contains over 80 essential nutrients our bodies crave. This water will keep you hydrated longer as the minerals will hold water in the body longer.”

What to Wear to Stay Hydrated by Skin Type

Whether you are oily, normal, dry, combination or sensitive moisturizing should be a regular part of your daily skin care regimen.

If You’re Oily

If you have oily skin, instead of avoiding moisturizers altogether, you should select one that’s “water-based”. Water-based moisturizing formulas are the most common type found on the market today. These moisturizers list water as their chief ingredient and often include such active constituents as hyaluronic acid to help improve their water-binding properties.

Hyaluronic acid is a large, sugar-like molecule that’s found in virtually every tissue of your body. As a key ingredient in your skin’s extracellular matrix, it plays a significant role in maintaining moisture and softness. Hyaluronic acid is an ideal moisturizer because it can attract and retain 1000 times its own weight in water (a feat unmatched by any other substance in nature). Skin will appear and feel fuller, more voluminous and show lessened signs of facial wrinkles. This type of moisturizer often comes in lightweight gels, serums, or oil free moisturizers and may be labeled “non-pore clogging”, “oil-free” or “noncomedogenic”. If you’re oily try our Radical Difference Serum. If you’re more acne-prone try our Detox Hydrating Gel.

If You’re Normal or Combination

A dry oil is a good option if you want an easy treatment plus hydration. Just remember to steer clear of products that use mineral waxes, mineral oils or other ingredients that can clog pores and trap perspiration. This makes a fertile breeding ground for acne-causing bacteria. Fleuressence Native Botanical Cell Oil.

If You’re Sensitive

Sensitive skin types should be very careful when choosing a moisturizer as many products on the market contain synthetic ingredients. Although these moisturizers generally don’t cause an adverse reaction in the majority of people, they can be very irritating to sensitive skin. If your skin is easily irritated, you should look carefully for a moisturizer that’s labeled hypoallergenic. These moisturizers are free of all dyes, preservatives, and artificial fragrance. Simple is better when dealing with sensitive skin. Products which contain the fewest ingredient are best, especially when they include natural oils and other nutrients like vitamins and minerals that nourish and rejuvenate the skin. Try our Vital Boost Moisturizer.

If You’re Dry

The most important thing to consider when picking a good moisturizer for dry skin is the degree of dryness. The heavier and denser a moisturizer is, the more moisturizing/hydrating elements it contains. Gel is the lightest preparation, followed by lotion, oil, and then a rich cream, providing the heaviest dose of moisture. Try our Plant Profusion Night Cream for an ultra boot of hydration.

Wishing everyone a very happy and hydrated summer!

 

 

Beauty starts from within – we all know that a healthy inside leads to a radiant outside and we share in that same DNA positioning as one of our favorite vitamin company, HUM Nutrition. Backed by science and substantiated clinical results, we had the opportunity to sit down with Alex Caspero | HUM RD Nutritionist, to learn more about the pulse behind the brand and what we can learn about how to incorporate wellness into our lives.

A little bit about Alexandra Caspero MA, RD, CLT, RYT: She is the owner of Delish Knowledge and author of Fresh Italian Cooking for the New Generation. Her award-winning blog, Delish Knowledge, focuses on making whole-food, vegetarian eating deliciously simple. Alex is the co-founder of Plant-Based Juniors, an evidence-based platform that helps parents navigate the world of plant-based prenatal and pediatric nutrition. Additionally, she is the co-author of Joyful Eating, Nourished Life, which helps others discover a happier, healthier relationship with food and their body. 

 

HUM has made such a splash within the beauty and wellness industry. Can you tell us how it all started?

It all starts with our passionate co-founders, Walter and Chris. Walter used to struggle with acne and once he started working with a nutritionist, they got to the root of the problem and he cleared his skin! This inspired him to develop a line of vitamins with the best nutrients to deliver on specific goals: gorgeous skin, lustrous hair, and overall better health.

What’s your best-selling product and it is the same as your favorite product within the line? 

We have a few best-selling products and one of my favorites is a new product that launched this year, Skin Heroes. Unlike most probiotics on the market, Skin Heroes contains both prebiotics and skin-specific probiotic strains that help decrease breakouts, create an even texture and tone, and hydrate the skin. In an in-house study, 88% reported a decrease in breakouts and 81% reported an improvement in digestion. 

What can we expect from using HUM products? Is there an overall goal in mind when creating the products? 

Everything HUM creates is designed with the customers needs in mind. Most of the supplements are geared toward beauty concerns, whether that’s stronger, healthier hair, firmer skin, reduced wrinkles or glowing skin. As beauty starts from within, nutrition is often the first line of defense in common beauty concerns. Other products are designed for overall wellness: multivitamins, detox herbs, adaptogens and products that support digestion. 

What does your typical wellness and beauty routine look like?

I’m a beauty minimalist; I wear make-up only when I have a TV interview or want to dress up for date-night. Therefore, I need my bare skin to look it’s absolute best. I rely on Red Carpet, a GLA supplement from HUM that’s helps with overall skin tone and reduces any redness. I’m also predominantly plant-based and strive to eat a diverse plant-based diet. That means that I aim to keep a diet of mostly fruits, vegetables, whole grains, beans/lentils, nuts, seeds and healthy plant-based fats. I occasionally enjoy an ice cream cone and potato chips, but aim to eat this way most of the time. This diet pattern is not only amazing for gut health, but it also keeps my skin looking radiant. In addition to being a dietitian, I’m also a yoga teacher and find that meditation is my saving grace; it keeps me focused on what’s important and able to cut through a lot of the noise that can be very distracting. 

How do you Detox (tips/rituals)? 

I aim to drink plenty of water throughout the day and typically do a face mask 2-3 times a week. As I mentioned above, I also focus on diversity of plants in my diet which provides plenty of fiber. Eating enough probiotic-rich fiber helps keep my digestion system moving and rid of toxins naturally. If there’s one piece of advice I could give when it comes to nutrition is that most of us are not eating enough fiber. The average American only eats 14g of fiber, which is less than half of the recommended amount. Consider that 70-80% of your immune system lives in your gut, and fiber is needed for a healthy gut! 

What advice can you offer people trying to transition into a more healthy and clean lifestyle? Are there any tips that you can offer on specific foods to avoid or must-have products to incorporate into our diet/regimen? 

As a dietitian, I prefer to meet people where they are at. For the vast majority of my clients, they aren’t eating enough plant foods so typically, I start there. That usually feels like an easier ask of people and they get to decide how that looks like with their taste and food preferences. That may mean swapping in more whole grains instead of refined ones, cutting back on animal-based foods or a fruit and vegetable intake challenge. Consider that only 1 in 10 Americans eat enough of the recommended produce amounts, this is usually an easy place to begin. 

Feeling healthy also goes beyond just diet. Focusing on water intake, sleep, stress and relationships are all part of individual wellness.