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You Are What You Eat

Eating a diet high in anti-oxidant rich foods such as leafy greens, berries and foods high in essential fatty acids (salmon, avocado, almonds) shows on your face as well as internally. So what really happens when you eat one too many onion rings or chicken fingers? The dreaded G word… Glycation. 

The Glycation process is sugar (from food and alcohol) breaking down the collagen fibers in the skin and speeding up the aging process. Glycation equals loss of elasticity and collagen, which equals sagging and dull skin. Foods that feed Glycation and cause inflammation in the body and the skin are carbohydrates, fried foods, sugar and alcohol. 

So where do can you start? Say goodbye to sugar, it is NOT your friend. Sugar is addictive and in almost everything! Pay attention to your daily sugar intake. Even that ‘healthy’ green juice you’re drinking has sugar. Read labels thoroughly- salad dressings, cooking marinades, pastas, breads, most fruits, cocktail mixers, nut butters, protein shakes, and coffee creamers (even the nondairy types) can be loaded with sugar. 

Once you know what to avoid, you need to reverse Glycation. Te most effective ways to do that is to limit the intake of the ‘bad’ foods, exercise daily, eat a healthy diet of vegetables, antioxidant rich foods and healthy fats. Developing a healthy skin care regimen, massaging your face, drinking lots of water and getting ample sleep will also help. 

Stop drinking

Watch alcohol intake. This is particularly relevant during the holiday season. Alcohol has dreadful and hazardous effects on the body and skin. Alcohol dehydrates the eyes, the skin and the inside of the body. Alcohol also makes the liver fat. Alcohol has a bad effect on Vitamin A, B3 and Vitamin C, which are all imperative antioxidants for healthy skin and organ function. Alcohol also affects blood sugar levels and can raise blood pressure. 

Signs you’re over drinking

  1. Frequent urination during the night
  2. Dry eyes upon waking in the AM
  3. Stomach issues + bloating
  4. Facial puffiness 
  5. Breakouts
  6. Fuzzy mind 
  7. Overall dehydration

Change Your Makeup + Skincare

If you’re suffering form clogged pores, milia or bums take a look at the ingredients in your makeup. Foundations, CC cream, powders, highlighter can all contain silicone, artificial dyes, and fillers. A good way to test if you were able to remove all the product is to see how much residue is left on the skin after cleansing by wiping with a wash cloth. If the cloth is clean then most likely you’re ok, but if the cloth has residue its time to find a new product. Our clean pick is Suntegrity.

Even the good things need a change. Ease up on the acid; Retinol, Glycolic and even Vitamin C can start to wreak havoc with overuse or when the weather starts to change. Look for more nourishing ingredients like avocado oil and grapeseed oil. Transition into a multi functional oil that delivers both brightness and hydration.

The Ugly Habits

Three of the worst things you can do to your skin are pick, smoke and neglect. Picking invites bacteria, germs and scaring. Smoking dehydrates the skin and body inside and out, enhances premature aging and causes wrinkles first showing signs around the mouth. Last but not least always wash your makeup off before bed.  Hitting the sheets in a full face will encourage bacteria, trap dirt and germs in the pores, cause breakouts and dehydrate skin. 

Healthy clear skin is only a few steps away! 

We had the intimate pleasure of sitting down with Laura Rubin, Founder of AllSwell Creative – AllSwell started as a passion project launched to encourage creativity in all its forms. It’s the brainchild of Laura Rubin, founder and creative director of the communications agency Left Left Right (LLR) Consulting.

Born from a morning surf check with uninspiring results, Laura decided to sit on the beach and journal instead. “Swell or no swell, all’s well.” As an inveterate scribbler and journal-keeper, she wanted to invite more people, like you, to reap its benefits. It’s known that creativity comes in all forms and we have learned about the incredible benefits of getting our creativity, thoughts, visions on paper as it acts as a powerful outlet – free form creativity at its finest.

We love Laura’s simple, yet powerful stance – Write it down, draw it out. Put pen to paper.

Purchase a notebook and put the words on the page or draw your vision in images. Need help leaping over the mental hurdle that you’re not creative or simply jump-starting the process? Attend one of her workshops and, trust us, that hurdle will fall away and you’ll be on your way to tapping into your innate voice. For the adventure seeker, join her on an AllSwell Excursion and see for yourself what a change of scenery can do for resetting your inspiration and mindset. Make sure follow Laura to stay up-to-date on all the incredible activations that she is spearheading – @lauralrubin.

How do you practice sustainability?

As a consumer I vote with my dollars. That extends to all aspects from clothing, to furniture to wine and food. I try to support small, local businesses and do a weekly shop at my greenmarket as my primary source of groceries. I eat as organically as I can and limit my animal protein intake to trustworthy sources, skipping meat at least 1 day a week. 

As an entrepreneur I chose to lower the carbon footprint of my brand by manufacturing domestically out of thoughtfully chosen materials. 

What are your favorite Eco-Friendly Products? 

I’m trying to take the non-toxic ethos I bring to my bodycare / skincare choices and apply it to my wardrobe. For instance, I usually buy a fresh pair of Vans sneakers each spring to wear with sundresses but this year I discovered Bangs Shoes through a friend and made a switch to a more environmentally friendly option. Similarly, Outerknown – a brand by pro surfer Kelly Slater – recently launched their women’s collection and I snagged a few cozy basics (that perfect cropped white sweatshirt, an oversize white button down to wear as a beach coverup) to brighten up my summer wardrobe. 

The fashion industry is such a massive source of global pollution so making choices that are savvy is important as a consumer. That said, repurposing, choosing vintage and repairing your own wardrobe favorites instead of replacing them is even better than buying more new stuff. 

What does wellness mean to you?

Wellness is balance. As careful as I am about living a supportive lifestyle, I don’t want to live in a bubble. If fall out of alignment, I have the tools to get back on track. I try to have some fun every day, enjoy my life, keep learning and give back.

Any advice for people wanting to make the switch towards a more mindful existence (increased wellness) but who are not sure where to start?

I’m a life-long journaler but it wasn’t until I started AllSwell that I dug into the substantial body of scientific research into the benefits of journaling. It turns out that this practice is mentally, emotionally and physiologically good for you. And it’s incredibly accessible. No mantras, mats or special outfit necessary. You just need a few minutes a day, paper and pen. For someone just starting out I suggest 4 x 4 x 4: try out 4 minutes of free-writing a day, do it 4 times a week and stick with it for 4 weeks straight. 

I also suggest becoming more mindful about your screen time. I don’t think it’s realistic to go full-luddite, but a simple commitment to an analog practice like putting pen to paper helps you unplug and reconnect with your own innate voice.   

What are your go-to daily beauty products and why?

I don’t wear much makeup but I’m a nut about my skincare. I’m prone to breakouts so I use EIR’s charcoal face wash morning and night. It deep cleans without stripping my skin. Before I apply a serum at night sometimes I like to do a deeper clean line Goldfaden’s Doctor’s Scrub. I feel like it helps all the good stuff in the serums penetrate more deeply. 

I just went on a motorcycle trip up the California coast to Carmel (and back). I had to travel extra-light, no space for my usual arsenal of skincare products. All I brought were Goldfaden’s Needle-less line smoothing concentrate, Dr. Barbara Sturm’s Glow Drops and Take Care’s Levity mist. Even after 5 long days on the road I still looked fresh, no small feat.   

Why is clean beauty important for you?

The concept of “toxic load” is one I became aware of as a young breast cancer survivor. I was diagnosed at 31 and in the process of going through treatment I began investigating the factors I had within my control to prevent a recurrence. We absorb everything we put on our skin, it passes directly into our bloodstream, so it’s a no-brainer to choose non-toxic skin, bath and beauty products. 

There have been thousands of new chemicals invented in the last 100 years. They’re tested singly by the FDA for safety but that’s not how we encounter them. We’re inundating our miraculous immune systems all day long with these new chemicals, taxing our immunity. But we’re not powerless and the more you educate yourself about easy switches you can make, the better you’re likely to feel. Check out Keep A Breast’s Non-Toxic Revolution program or the Environmental Working Group for more information. 

Happily, I’m cured of breast cancer but I’m still vigilant and committed to a healthy lifestyle so I get to fully enjoy my time here. 

How do you de-stress?

When I journal regularly I’m less anxious overall as well as being more creative and productive. So, I journal twice a day. At night in bed I tend to write whatever’s banging around in my head. I jot down whatever I need to remember for the next day and in doing so it helps me get more nourishing rest. In the morning I make myself a matcha latte and journal again, usually a gratitude list and a short free-write. 

My other de-stress go-to tool is time spent in nature. I moved to California from New York in order to spend more time outdoors. I love a good hike or a morning surf session. It completely rewires my mood. 

What is your daily mantra?

“Fear is the cheapest room in the house. I’d like to see you living in better conditions.” – Hafiz