So how did you get into skincare?
Okay, I hate to admit this but I didn't have my first facial until I was in esthetics school. I went to school to be an elementary school teacher but upon graduation I realized I didn't want to do it anymore. I thought, what did I want to do? I loved beauty but I didn't want to do hair or nails or anything. So I looked up how to be certified in the beauty realm and was in school a week later. My first facial was with someone who was giving their first facial. I just picked the first school on Google. It was a leap of faith and it really was right for me. I thought, "I think I'm gonna like this" so I just bet everything on it. It's now been seven years and I can't imagine doing anything else.
I never grew up as a skincare junky. I had the basics. I think I carry that over in my realistic, simple approach to how I communicate about skin to my clients. I'm not about really complicated, luxury routines. I'm not someone who tries a new product or tries all the new things coming out. Once I have a routine that I know is quality ingredients, I stick with it.
Do you think anything of your training as a teacher has come into your practice?
Oh yeah, I knew I loved working with my hands and didn't want to be in an office so I got both of those. And I still get to teach people all day and learn from those around me to learn how to be an even better teacher.
Since you believe less is more, what is a product that everyone should have?
I love a hydrating mist. It changed my skin. It's the most simple product out there but it made the biggest difference in how my skin has looked. I mist all day, midmorning, at lunch, after lunch, before I go to dinner, after dinner. Literally all the time. It makes my skin look dewy. By midday, you've been dehydrated by the heater and going inside and outside all day. So keep your routine basic in the morning and then keep it up throughout the day. I love the Herbivore mists. I was concerned with fine lines but this plumps them right up.
You need a hydrating moisturizer with a good SPF and then a good mist and it's like perfect hydration. Sometimes I check with clients and am like do you need more mist? and they say no and I'm like, you should need more!
Any other general advice based on what you've seen with clients?
My guiding principle of all of my skincare practice is anti-inflammatories. We're all walking around so inflamed. First of all, we live in a city with major pollution and it's breaking down our collagen and elastin in our skin. It's like an apple turning brown. So you need to boost your skin with anti-inflammatories to prevent that crazy tole pollution takes on our skin. Also for aggravated breakout-prone skin, which most women in their 20s to 30s have. It's all inflammation. That's what makes it so red and swollen. Rather than going toward drying products like salicylic acid. Go towards an anti-inflammatories treatment. I love the Volcanic Ash + Sage Facial Earth Mask from Shaffali. Just put it right on those spots. That's so much better than turning to a clay mask. The last thing we want is to dry out the surface and then it'll be impossible to cover up. So go with an anti-inflammatory and it'll disappear faster. Also, don't pick!
So much of skincare success is from diet. It's such a bummer. I've always been told I need to give up dairy so I'm not inflammed.
Well everyone needs something different so obviously always check with your doctor. But also don't give up cheese. Don't tell your doctor I said that. Eat the cheese. Cheese is wonderful. But add this stuff on top of it. Have spearmint tea or golden milk in the morning [recipe below]. If you make one canister with all the spices mixed together, then all you need is the milk and the spices. It's great.
Jenna's Golden Milk Recipe
Golden Milk Recipe: (makes 2 servings)
2 cups milk of choice (my favorite is a half coconut milk/half almond milk blend)
1 tsp ground turmeric
1/4 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp cinnamon
pinch of fresh ground black pepper
1 tbsp raw honey
1tsp coconut oil
Add all ingredients except coconut oil into a saucepan. Whisk briskly first to combine, then heat for 3-5 minutes over medium heat while stirring occasionally until hot but not boiling. Drop 1 tsp of coconut oil into each mug and pour Golden Milk directly over. Drink immediately.
Was inflammation a problem for you, personally?
I struggled with my skin, honestly, through most of my 20s. Frankly, I think I was doing too much for too long.
What do you think was the turning point?
Herbal supplements, really. Your gut health determines how you feel and how your skin looks. All the bacteria in the gut determines your whole balance. Also, a lot of these skincare products are wiping out all the bacteria. Actually, I've noticed a rise in probiotic skincare. Putting it on your body instead of in it. You need to give your skin some defense so probiotic skincare might be one of the next big things and I'm all for it.
What are three things that you like that don't have to do with skin?
I'm studying for my sommelier exam. I have all the textbooks. I got into wine when I went backpacking through Europe for 6 months, I went to Bordeaux. I realized how much I don't know and how much there is to know. And my goal is just to be able to host a dinner party and be able to teach everyone else how fascinating it is. And to not be intimated to read a wine list. The documentary Somm is so fascinating. I'm also reading The Billionaire's Vinegar, about the most expensive bottle of wine ever sold. But from that, it goes into how the wine market was counterfeit. It's amazing. Wow, I could talk about for forever.
Dogs, dogs, dogs, dogs. I can sit around watching dog videos all day. I have a little rescue terrier guy. His name is Wesley Walsh. He's such a troublemaker.
I don't watch movies. However, I'm a documentary freak. If it didn't happen, I don't want to hear about it. True crime, I'm all about. I keep wanting to go back to Making a Murder. I also loved Manhunt: Unabomber. Wow, I probably sound crazy, I promise I won't hurt you! But also please tell me all the docs you love!
Fill in the blank: ________Day
Taco Day, always, every day.
Interested in learning more from Jenna? You can book your facial with her here!