Category: Uncategorized

How to get longer lashes

Posted on February 13th, by Helen in Uncategorized. 4 comments

To flutter is to flirt. Yet I have never heard a man check out a lady’s facial hair (“Man, did you see how she blinked those lashes?”). Nonetheless, the pursuit for thicker, longer, darker and fuller eyelashes is an obsession for me, and for many. Lashes frame and enhance the eyes (the anatomical area many women would remind men serves as a window to the soul). The cosmetics industry has responded with a myriad of products — you can wave a wand, you can glue on fakes, you can grow your own — and I tried several of them out.

Price  $150 for a month’s supply
What it is  Just as Viagra was initially developed as heart medication and Botox as a muscle paralyzer for eyelid spasms, Latisse was formulated as an eye drop for glaucoma. As a side effect, it tends to make your eyelashes longer, darker and fuller. “The results are pretty stunning. It provides a 106% increase in fullness which is remarkable for any drug,” Dr. Lisa Kellett of DLK on Avenue, told me. Lashes have a life cycle of about 60 days so it takes eight weeks of daily application to yield the most noticeable results. I … Read More »

Deciphering Skin-care Labels

Posted on January 11th, by staff in Uncategorized. 7 comments

Dr. Lisa Kellett, a Toronto-based dermatologist, cuts through the science of your skin-cream labels. (Remember: Ingredients are listed from the highest amount present to the lowest.)

Winter-proof your skin

Posted on November 30th, by staff in Uncategorized. 10 comments

1 Be Ms. Clean

Morning and night, wash away the pollution, makeup or other stuff that’s settled on your skin. Lathering up with soap can leave your face dry. Instead, choose a cleanser formulated for your skin type. “If you’re dry, use a cream-based cleanser,” says Holly Sherrard, Canadian education manager at The International Dermal Institute, an organization that trains skin therapist. Gel-based cleansers are great for combination and oily complexions.
Try: cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser (250mL, $10) for dry skin : Neo Strata Oil Free Gel Cleanser (150mL, $27) for oily skin.

2 Fight flakiness
If your skin is extra dull and flaky, you can blame the weather. The cold air outside and heated air inside rob your skin of moisture, leaving it dry. The solution to a brighter, smoother complexion is to exfoliate about three times a week. To do the job, there are two types of exfoliates:

Chemical exfoliates contain hydroxyl acids or enzymes that dissolve dead skin cells (they feel like a thin lotion when you apply with fingertips, then rinse away).
Try: Aveda Botanicals Kinetics Exfoliant (50mL, $13).

Mechanical exfoliants contain tiny beads that physically scrub off dead cells as you rub them over your skin. If you opt for a … Read More »

How to get Gorgeous Wedding Day Skin

Posted on November 30th, by Helen in Uncategorized. 5 comments

Dr. Lisa Kellett, owner of Toronto’s DLK on Avenue, is quite simply the best when it comes to skincare. She’s my go-to-guru for perfect skin. She always prescribes just the right treatment and product to put my skin in fighting form. Two days before my wedding, I had an Oxygen Facial at DLK (Madonna is said to be a huge fan of them) and I can tell you my skin never looked better as I walked down the aisle. I recently nabbed a few minutes with Dr. Kellett to chat pre-wedding skin issues—here’s her sage and savvy advice.

1.What is the number one skin concern you hear from brides?
“Acne! Adult acne in women is quite common in general and especially with the stress of an upcoming wedding many brides do suffer from acne.”

2. Solution(s) to adult acne?
“There are many treatments available to treat acne depending on the severity, patient characteristics and time line. One of the most important first steps is to use proper daily home care. This means starting with a gentle, non-foaming exfoliating cleanser once to twice a day. A benzoyl peroxide in a gel moisturizer is a solid mainstay for acne treatment as it … Read More »

How to get longer eyelashes fast

Posted on November 1st, by Helen in Uncategorized. 10 comments

With lash-enhancing products and treatments popping up everywhere and at every price point, you don’t have to go to great lengths to get the luscious lashes you’ve been longing for.

Got fair-hued lashes?
You have options: head into the spa for an eyelash tint treatment, a 20- minute procedure done by an esthetician using vegetable dyes in shades ranging from brown to black or to more dramatic blue-black. Results can last up to three weeks, depending on the speed of your hair growth. Or mimic the effect with new semi permanent mascaras.
HIGH: RVB 15-Day wear ($40, available at
LOW: Hard candy 4 day lash tint ($7, at Walmart)

“Often, when I’m applying mascara, I want to define the lashes first, then, for a more dramatic look, I apply a second coat of mascara using a big bristle brush,” says Brittany Sinclair, a M.A.C makeup artist in Toronto. Look for double–headed mascaras to give you that two step process in one.
HIGH: M.A.C Haute & Naughty Lash ($23, M.A.C)
LOW: L’Oreal Double Extend mascara ($14, at Shoppers Drug Mart)

Latisse is the only prescription eyelash–growth product that contains bimatoprost, an active ingredient for treating hypotrichosis (inadequate or not enough … Read More »

Ready to Reverse

Posted on October 31st, by staff in Uncategorized. 8 comments

Beauty writer Erica Cupido talks to the experts about how to bounce back from hair and skin damage.

Complexion Correction
The latest skin-care products are formulated to defy visible signs of aging and turn back the clock. They key to enviably smooth skin like Andie MacDowell’s is the year-round use of topical SPF, but if you’ve been less than vigilant and want to reverse the sun’s harmful effects, look for products containing retinol. “It’s the gold standard when it comes to anti-aging,” says Dr. Lisa Kellett, dermatologist at DLK on Avenue. “It promotes skin renewal and works to smooth fine lines and wrinkles.” For best results that typically last six to 12 months, hyaluronic acid-based injectable fillers can also be used to soften or erase folds and expression lines.

Fast-acting serums that stimulate collagen production can alos help restore the skin’s youthful appearance, while professional treatments that boost the natural supply of collagen will plump up the skin and smooth wrinkles. ProFractional laser treatments, for example, simultaneously target collagen fibres and improve the appearance of damaged skin.

Discoloration and uneven skin tone are also legacies of sun exposure. To diminish the appearance of dark spots, Dr. Kellett recommends using a correcting treatment that includes … Read More »

Holiday skincare gift ideas

Posted on September 27th, by staff in Uncategorized. No Comments

The holiday season is approaching and soon the stress of balancing gift-buying, parties and family get-togethers will overwhelm even the most dedicated spa-goer. Services, packages and products that relieve tension and rejuvenate winter skin will get clients in a festive spirit.

Combining services is a simple way to bring something new to your spa’s repertoire. For example, during last year’s season, The Spa at the Hotel Casino in New Brunswick bundled together a 60-minute hot stone massage and a 60 minute hot stone “pure bliss” facial to create the “Baby, It’s Cold Outside” package, and will likely bring it back this year, says Julie Bernatchez, spa supervisor.

Another idea is to trim down the length of popular services, such as manicures, pedicures and massages. Since the holidays are hectic, express services and packages are ideal for those pressed for time. The stressed shopper will appreciate an escape for a quick massage, or combine a manicure, makeup application and hair style to create the perfect package for those hurrying from work to a party. Remember to display cosmetics in rich shades, which can be purchased as gifts or for touchs-ups at a party.

To keep skin radiant and smooth in winter, exfoliation and hydration … Read More »

Argan oil is the latest ingredient touted for its cosmetic and health properties, but in Morocco, it’s liquid gold

Posted on August 30th, by Helen in Uncategorized. 6 comments

Morocco’s TreasureThanks to a burgeoning interest in socially – and environmentally-responsible products, an ancient ingredient is rapidly becoming the hot new commodity not only in the cosmetic and personal care industries, but also in gourmet food and natural health circles. And, in the process, it’s bringing prosperity and independence to a group of women who traditionally have enjoyed little of either.

Allow us to introduce you to exotic argan oil, made from nut of the Argania spinosa tree, which grows almost solely in arid and semi-arid regions of the southwest Morocco. The drought resistant trees perform several important functions, from providing forage for goats and camels to preventing the desert from swallowing up productive land. But it’s the fruits, which resembles a cross between a large olive and walnut that holds that nutritional, medicinal, and cosmetic prize. The kernels within contain the oil, which, for centuries, Berber women extracted by cracking open the fruit and grinding the nuts with rocks, (The Berbers, or Amazigh, are a non-Arab people native to North Africa.) If roasted beforehand, the kernels produce an edible, nutty tasting oil … Read More »

Radiance Cream

Posted on August 10th, by staff in Uncategorized. 4 comments

We object to the term “youthful glow,” comfortable in the knowledge that radiance can be achieved at any age. Boost your beauty routine by incorporating skin brighteners to even out tone and illuminators that cause light to bounce off the face, giving skin that desirable quality. Toronto-based dermatologist Dr. Lisa Kellett recommends a product with brightening agents in it that are compatible with your sunscreen. If you use a radiance cream during the day, she reminds you to apply it after an SPF product of 30 or higher.

For those who want to supplement with a treatment at the dermatologist, Kellett says, “Lumenis 1 treatments are idea for fading brown spots and red blotchy skin and to make skin more homogeneous.” This procedure uses light (intense pulse light) to heat up collagen in the dermis, sparing the delicate outer layers of the skin.

– From “Radiant You” by Athena McKenzie, Zoomer Magazine, September.

Thermage Skin Tightening for men

Posted on August 10th, by Helen in Uncategorized. 6 comments

ATTITUDE HIM – Thermage for Homme

LIKE IT OR NOT, vanity – or perceived vanity – is a trait that’s a lot more acceptable in women than men. Only fair when you consider that as women are left struggling under the pressure of living up to increasingly unrealistic ideals of beauty, it’s almost universally agreed that the worst a man can expect is the prospect of looking ever more dignified, rugged and worldly. But what about those men who aren’t yet prepared to be rugged dignitaries? How do they address appearance-related anxieties without sacrificing their sprezzatura?

“Men are different than women when it comes to aging in that they are often looking for non-surgical options to avoid the ‘over-done’ look,” says Toronto-based dermatologist Dr. Lisa Kellett. “The great thing about Thermage is that the onset is gradual, so the effect is very natural.”

Thermage is a non-invasive, non-surgical cosmetic procedure that uses radiofrequency energy to repair and remodel collagen beneath the skin’s surface, smoothing out lines and wrinkles and tightening areas of loose skin anywhere on the body. Kellett explains that male skin is about 25 per cent thicker and much more resilient than women’s. “The structure of men’s collagen differs due … Read More »

Superhero Products

Posted on August 8th, by staff in Uncategorized. 10 comments

There is a Japanese proverb that says “Kind hearts are better than fair faces.” Its nice sentiment, but, as anyone with skin concern knows, playing nice when it comes to blemishes, wrinkles, sagging and discolouration can only get you so far. “Everybody should practice good skin care, but there can come a point where [products] alone can’t do the job anymore,” explains Dr.Frank Lista, a Toronto-based plastic surgeon. “It might be something we can fix with lasers, injectables or, if necessary, surgery.”

The good news is that there are many new procedures and techniques that deliver natural–looking results with less downtime as well as great high-tech topical products for those taking the DIY route. ELLE, asked some leading experts for advice on how to fight four of the most common skin concerns, from the drugstore to the derm’s office.

SPOT ON If concealing pimples at an age when you’re also contemplating eye creams seems like one of mother nature’s cruelest jokes, you’re not alone: According to a recent study, the median age for acne sufferers has risen from 20.5 to 26.5. Characterized by pustules and cysts around the jaw and neck, female adult acne usually has a hormonal origin, says Dr. Nowell … Read More »

Beauty Review: Microdermabrasion Facial

Posted on July 25th, by Helen in Uncategorized. 3 comments

You know the satisfaction you get from seeing all the gunk that comes off on a Biore nose strip? It’s a mix of delight and omigod I can’t believe that crap is IN my face. That was EXACTLY how I felt when I saw all the dead skin cells and blackheads that were in my filter after a 30-minute microdermabrasion facial.

The nice people at DLK on Avenue invited me to try out my first Microdermabrasion facial last week at their super sleek Yorkville medi-spa. I was expecting to be exfoliated by magic crystals that would leave my skin red and raw. Not so. Dermatologist, Dr. Lisa Kellett and her team uses a newer, more advanced technology called the Diamond Peel ($150) that uses a fine sandpaper-like diamond tip attached to a suctioning vacuum pen. I mean, who doesn’t want diamonds all over their face?

The pen is moved over the face several times to reveal new skin and to unclog pores. Apparently my dead skin cells were coming off in chunks! My biggest concern was whether this whole process would hurt. Not only did it not hurt, I practically … Read More »

Nivea still making weight claims in Canada

Posted on July 12th, by Helen in Uncategorized. 6 comments

Canadian consumers are still being told that a Nivea skin cream will help shed unwanted pounds, even after the U.S. consumer protection commission recently reached a settlement banning the skin cream maker from making those claims in the United States.

Late last month, the settlement with the Federal Trade Commission forced Nivea skin cream maker Beiersdorf Inc. to pay $900,000 U.S. in compensation to consumers, as well as stop claiming that regular use of its Nivea My Silhouette! skin cream would help them slim down.

The product is available at Canadian drug stores, retailing for $15.99 at a Shoppers Drug Mart in Ottawa, and the company's Canadian website claims that regular use of the cream will "slim and reshape" the user's body, taking up to three centimetres off thighs, hips, waists and bellies.

Canadian consumers can log complaints about advertising of cosmetic and health products with the Advertising Standards Canada, the self-regulatory body that works to enforce the Canadian Code of Advertising Standards.

Neither the standards commission nor the Competition Bureau — the federal agency that works to prevent abuse of market power — could say whether they are investigating claims … Read More »

Save Our Skin!

Posted on June 28th, by staff in Uncategorized. No Comments

We all want Elle Fanning’s skin: Young, taut, clear, lineless.

Hey, she’s 13 and apparently still acne free.

Get back to me when you’re 40, Elle.

Unless we take precautions, we’re all bound to end up with skin like the Corinthian leather seats Ricardo Montalban used to extol in those 1970s Chrysler Cordoba ads.
This is an SOS: Save Our Skin.

“Beautiful takes attention and dedication,” says Nahla Saad, creative director at Noor boutique, the only purveyor in Toronto of the Erno Laszlo line of skin-care products.

In the 1920s, Dr. Erno Laszlo (1897-1973), a Hungarian dermatologist, treated Princess Stephanie of Belgium for acute acne. Because she refused to wear heavy make-up, Laszlo created a special treatment including a transparent film of colouring that transformed her skin and restored her self-esteem. This attracted an aristocratic clientele and prompted Laszlo to open his first institute in Budapest in 1927.

“Dr Laszlo was nothing short of a revolutionary,” Saad says. “He caused a commotion when he insisted that his patients cleanse their faces with cleansing bars/soaps and water instead of the then popular cold creams. He was also one of the earliest specialists to observe that climate change and sun exposure can wreak havoc on the skin.”

In 1939, Laszlo … Read More »

Women’s attitudes toward aging shifting

Posted on June 27th, by staff in Uncategorized. No Comments

Jeanne Beker photo:

Women have more choices now than ever when it comes to enhancing their beauty. The options help, with 75% of Canadian women saying they feel more confident now than they did 10 years ago.

The FACE Report, which surveys women’s attitudes towards aging and beauty, was recently released by the FACE Institute, a group of leading aesthetic physicians.

“The look of beauty has changed—there is no longer a cookie cutter version of beauty,” said Dr. Lisa Kellett, a member of the FACE Institute and physician and founder of Toronto’s DLK on Avenue Cosmetic Dermatology Clinic.

When it comes to beauty treatment options, women today have much more choice in terms of both surgical and non-surgical treatments.

“Twenty years ago you could either have a facelift or not,” Kellett said. “We’re moving away from more drastic measures and more towards things that will enhance beauty, but not completely change the way someone looks.”

Treatments such as Botox, radio frequency tightening such as Thermage, or facial fillers like Juvederm have become standard, go-to treatments for many women. The study found that one in four women are open to having injectable treatments.

Aging gracefully is something many women are embracing. The study found nine in 10 … Read More »

Skincare for 50 and over

Posted on June 22nd, by Helen in Uncategorized. 11 comments

Cancer risk is on the rise for aging skin. The 45-plus population grew up at a time when suntanning was considered healthy. “Thirty years ago, a deep, dark Bain de Soleil was a sign of health and leisure, so it’s more likely that this group has accumulated sun damage,” explains Dr. Lisa Kellett. Skin cancer occurs gradually, often manifesting itself years after sun exposure. So, if you’ve made it to age 60 and haven’t seen a rogue mole yet, don’t think you’ve necessarily dodged a bullet.

Today, we’re generally well educated to the fact that there’s no such thing as a healthy tan; instead, a tan is a sign of skin damage and a risk of melanoma. The good news, says Kellett, is, “If a 60-year-old learns how to behave responsibly in the sun that’s going to help when they’re 80.”

Skin cancer, the uncontrolled growth of malignant skin cells, is by far the most common type of cancer in Canada – surprisingly, almost more that breast, ovarian, prostate and colon cancers combined. You are your own first responder to this crisis. Most skin cancers are detected during self-examination and, fortunately, 90 per cent can be cured if detected early enough. … Read More »

Driving with open window boosts skin cancer risk

Posted on June 21st, by Helen in Uncategorized. 6 comments

Driving with the window down and the sun shining on your arm carries a steep price in the form of an increased risk of skin cancer, dermatologists warn.

Botox turns 10

Posted on June 21st, by staff in Uncategorized. 4 comments

You might not know by their faces, but the Botox Cosmetic people are ecstatic about their 10th year as a Health Canada-approved wrinkle treatment.

In the blink of a decade, Allergan has seen its flagship product go from a kooky idea—injecting a neurotoxin directly into a person’s head—to a multimillion-dollar juggernaut that’s literally changed the face of aging.

In fact, results of a recent Leger Marketing survey suggest nearly one-quarter of Canadian women are now open to injectable cosmetic treatments, helping explain why Botox Cosmetic has enjoyed double-digit growth every year since its 2001 debut.

But no matter how impressive the returns, some say the social costs are exponentially higher.

“People on TV keep getting younger and younger-looking, and faces appear like masks; signs of life are now seen as undesirable,” says Patricia Leavy, associate professor of sociology at Stonehill College in Massachusetts.

“With Botox now considered a normal part of appearance management, those who do have lines and pores are frowned upon as if they’re lazy couch potatoes.”

Indeed, in a marked departure from childhood, the last decade has seen the idea of one’s face freezing in a certain expression become less a threat than an intriguing option.

The American Society of Plastic Surgeons reports that … Read More »

Sun damage to skin

Posted on June 8th, by Helen in Uncategorized. 6 comments

We read that sun damage causes 80% of the signs we associate with aging? How do UV rays cause such damage? How can sunburn lead to wrinkles?

Dermatologists dismiss sunscreen worries

Posted on May 27th, by Helen in Uncategorized. 5 comments

Dermatologists are kicking sand in the face of two reports that claim two common sunscreen ingredients aren’t safe for use. The Environmental Working Group along with the influential consumer magazine, Consumer Reports, both recently released ratings of the best and worst sunscreen on the markets. And both warned that many sunscreens contain dangerous ingredients. But dermatologists say the worries are overblown.
“The problem (with these reports) is they get people scared about using sun protection,” Dr. Lisa Kellett tells