Know Your Acids for Skincare


Acids in skincare are unsung heroes.

They are the miracle tools used to chemically exfoliate, even skin tone, and fight acne, age spots, wrinkles, and scarring. It can seem overwhelming to know which skincare products containing acids are best, but knowing the specific uses for each can be helpful in choosing products that are best for your unique skin type. Some acids are more well known than others, but they each have an individual purpose depending on your skin’s different issues, and we’ll discover that now. 


Best for… Acid
acne-prone skin azelaic acid, salicylic acid, glycolic acid, lactic acid, mandelic acid
mature skin glycolic acid, lactic acid, ascorbic acid, ferulic acid
fading pigmentation kojic acid, azelaic acid, glycolic acid, lactic acid, linoleic acid, ascorbic acid, ferulic acid


The Different Types of Acids and Their Uses

The acids listed below are the primary acids skincare specialists work with that have been well researched in skincare.  Keep in mind, acids are great for most people, but sensitive skin needs the selective de-squamatization delivered by enzymes, which are much gentler.

Azelaic Acid:  Treats acne, papulopustular rosacea, hyperpigmentation/melasma, and aging skin. This is an awesome, multifunctional acid. Usual use: 20% on leave-on products.

Ascorbic Acid: AKA vitamin C. Comes in many forms, some more stable than others. Great for anti-oxidant effects, sun damage, and hyperpigmentation. We use primarily MAP (magnesium ascorbyl phosphate) vit C due to its stability and gentleness. Use range is typically between 5 and 20% (the work of Sheldon Pinnell, MD, from Duke University)  He proposed the use of unstable L-ascorbic acid.  We use stable MAP Vit C, instead.

Citric Acid: The baby sister of ascorbic acid. Citric Acid is a wonderful product for treating several skin problems like mild acne, pigmentation, clogged pores, sun tanning, wrinkles, and dark spots. Lemons, oranges, and certain berries contain citric acid in large quantities. You can apply citric acid on the skin, in the form of peels, toners, scrubs, or masks. Use is typically 1-5%.

Ferulic Acid: ferulic acid. A plant-based, phenolic antioxidant that is found in bran, among other plants. Research has shown that it provides antioxidant benefits to the skin while enhancing the stability of topical applications of antioxidant vitamins C and E. It also helps defend skin against environmental assault. Use is typically 1%.

Glycolic Acid: Is the holy grail for exfoliation, effectively removing the outermost layer of dead cells from the complexion, revealing brighter, fresher skin. Products that contain Glycolic Acid are used often to treat scarring, skin discoloration, and signs of aging, like fine lines and wrinkles. Use is typically between 5 and 35%.

Kojic Acid: is sometimes used in health and beauty products to lighten the skin. It may be used to treat skin conditions, such as sun damage, scars, and age spots. The science behind how kojic acid works as a lightening agent involves its effect on melanin production.

Lactic Acid: This is the hydrating acid that has many of the same effects as glycolic acid, but is milder for mature or sensitive skin. All alpha hydroxy acids exfoliate and improve skin texture, but lactic acid has an extra benefit you won’t get from its AHA cousins. Lactic acid helps improve the skin’s natural moisture factor, or the way the skin keeps itself hydrated. Basically, lactic acid helps to keep the skin moisturized and feeling less dry.

Malic Acid: Red wine contains antioxidants as well as malic acid, an alpha hydroxyacid. Both have scientific evidence showing they provide anti-aging and other skincare benefits. An antioxidant in wine, resveratrol, has been shown to be a very powerful antioxidant. It is a skin brightener.

Mandelic Acid: Softens and smoothes fine lines and roughness. It is derived from almonds. It is also an AHA. Mandelic acid is another alpha-hydroxy acid, one that’s derived from bitter almonds. Like glycolic acid, it’s an exfoliating agent that’s useful for preventing acne, treating sun damage, and evening out pigmentation. However, due to its larger molecular structure, it doesn’t penetrate the skin as deeply as glycolic acid, so it’s less irritating to the skin. For this reason, it’s commonly recommended in peels instead of glycolic acid, particularly for ethnic skin which is more prone to rebound pigmentation. Rebound pigmentation occurs when a resistance is built up to a particular substance due to excessive use. This causes the substance to not only be ineffective but often causes it to have the opposite of the intended effect.

Salicylic Acid: This is the only beta hydroxy acid and is used to treat acne and at lower doses, has anti-inflammatory effects. It is milder than AHA’s and helps keep pores clean. At concentrations above the usual 2%, salicylic acid has pronounced exfoliating and keratolytic effects that can soften calloused skin and corns.

Tartaric Acid: is naturally found in grapes and bananas, and when applied topically it can smooth the skin, enhancing your skin’s natural glow. Champagne, which is derived from grapes, is an easily available source of tartaric acid, and this detoxifying treatment is a great choice for a light alpha hydroxy mask.

The Three Main Types of Exfoliation

Many skincare experts recommend exfoliating the skin two to three times a week to tackle deep dirt and oil buildup, reduce dullness, and sweep away dead skin cells. Exfoliation promotes healthy cell turnover as they buff away the dead skin. There are three main types of exfoliation, and each has its benefits. 

Mechanical – scrubs anything that is abrasive from mildly to extremely harsh. The mechanical exfoliation uses a product like a scrub to physically remove the skin cells by buffing them away. 

Chemical – acids, primarily, which break down the keratin bonds of skin proteins (keratolytic) which reveals fresher, softer skin beneath.  This is primarily the AHA’s (alpha hydroxy acids).

Remember, all clients who are treated with or use products containing AHA’s must be instructed to use sunscreen, or they will do further damage to their skin with UV exposure, thus defeating the purpose.

Enzymatic – these enzymes are very specific in what they break down, which is only dead skin cells, not live cells, thus making them more gentle and appropriate for those with sensitive skin.

Be Sure to Consult a Skin Care Specialist

When working with skincare acids and exfoliation, it’s important to work with a knowledgeable skincare specialist. They’ve been trained to help assist their clients in achieving their skincare goals in the safest way possible. We love to answer any questions our customers may have, so please feel free to give us a call or email and we’ll be sure to help you with your skincare routine![/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_separator][vc_column_text]


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ends April 26, 2021



What are the Real Dangers of Acetone Nail Polish Remover?

How Dangerous is Acetone?

Like a lot of chemicals you find in cleaners and cosmetic products, acetone is a naturally occurring substance. Since it’s a very powerful solvent, it has a lot of uses in industry, especially as paint thinner. If you’ve ever used acetone to remove paint from furniture, you know how effective it is. 

It’s also one of the most common ingredients in nail polish remover. It has a very strong smell, and for some people, it can be quite irritating. It can also cause some damage to the nail bed and the nails themselves.

While the dangers of acetone nail polish removers are fairly benign, there are also some safer non-acetone nail polish removers that don’t come with the smell, don’t need nearly as many cotton balls, and can get rid of hard-to-remove nail gel without a long soak. 

What are the Health Risks of Acetone?

Acetone has been used by painters and industrial workers for some time and has proven to be safe… when appropriate precautions are taken. While the levels of acetone in nail polish are pretty small by comparison, it’s hard to consider a product entirely safe for your hands and feet when professionals need to handle it with gloves, masks, and protective gear.

So what are the risks of concentrated acetone? Without protective gear, inhaling acetone is fairly dangerous, especially if you do it frequently. Before commercial facilities started requiring sufficient protective gear, factory workers who inhaled large amounts of acetone were found to suffer from a range of serious health consequences: 

Dangers of Inhaling Acetone

  • Increased heart rate
  • Confusion/disorientation
  • Severe cough
  • Sore throat
  • Nasal irritation/sneezing
  • Damage to mucous membranes
  • Loss of consciousness

We know more about the risks of acetone inhalation today, and those same workers in a modern setting aren’t exposed to these same risks if they wear respiration masks and safety goggles.

However, long-term exposure to large amounts of acetone over time (large in this case means 500 parts-per-million airborne particles) could cause permanent lung damage or respiratory illness. So, yes, acetone is relatively safe, provided that you handle it as recommended. 

Is it Safe to Handle Acetone?

This is a common safety label that you’re likely to find on most containers of pure acetone.

We should note that, if you’re already using acetone as a paint thinner or to strip furniture, remember that as long as you’re being safe, you’re not putting yourself in any danger. 

ONLY use acetone:

  • In highly ventilated areas 
  • Wear protective clothing, like long sleeves and surgical gloves, when you use it
  • When you’re also wearing protective eyewear like goggles or OSHA approved eye coverings
  • With a ventilation mask

Taking that all into account, it’s still hard to balance the logic of using a substance on your nails that we can’t confidently recommend that you handle without gloves. What are you exposing yourself to when you soak your nails in it to remove acrylic nails or nail gel?

The Dangers of Soaking Nails in Acetone Nail Polish Remover

Acetone nail polish remover is still the standard at professional nail salons and used in many homes. In fact, most of the time, your manicurist could still be using 100% pure acetone to get rid of your nail acrylic nail extensions. (You’ll now be very aware of why those professionals all wear protective eye covering and ventilation masks.)

Manicurists will usually have their customers soak the nails in pure acetone to break down a gel manicure. If there’s one thing you don’t want to do to your nails or your skin, it’s soaking them in acetone. 

Soaking your nails for long periods to break down nail polish or gel is far from ideal, and can cause some serious irritations. Acetone can dehydrate the nail bed, cuticles, and skin. For some people, that causes rashes, seriously dry skin, nail discoloration (pseudo-leukonychia) and dry, cracked nails (onychoschizia). 

And of course, dry, brittle, discolored nails almost entirely defeat the purpose of caring for your nails in the first place. 

What are the Other Dangers of Acetone Nail Polish Remover?

Acetone is known for causing sore throats and headaches because of the fumes and the unpleasant odor. Is that a serious health concern? Not necessarily—but headaches and sore throats are certainly unpleasant, particularly if you get either or both every time you do your nails. 

It’s also highly flammable, so you do have to be cautious of how you store it. If it’s ingested, it’s very, very harmful and could cause death. If you have small children around, it’s very important that you don’t leave it out. 

What are the Natural Alternatives to Acetone Nail Polish Remover?

You can easily find acetone-free nail polish remover that you buy at the drugstore. Even if you use remover with acetone, it’s usually fairly diluted. Why is that important? Because simply put, those acetone-free nail polish removers often don’t work quickly and aren’t as effective. Removing several coats of nail polish takes longer and uses up more cotton balls. Even after several applications, you may still see some of the nail polish residues on your nails! 

Clean Nails™, when combined with heat, is as effective at removing even stubborn non-uv-cured gel polish from the nails. In fact, Clean Nails™ is more effective at breaking down polish on acrylic nails, as well as non-uv-cured gel nail polishes, which means you don’t have to soak your delicate skin in an acetone bath! 

Products that have non-invasive or harmful ingredients are fairly easy to spot, so look for labeling that indicates the natural nail polish remover is:

  • Free of VOCs
  • Has limited ingredients
  • Doesn’t include chemicals that irritate the skin or airways
  • Can be used indoors safely
  • Provides additional moisturizers or therapeutic agents for the skin
  • Easy and effective to use
  • Formulated using proven scientific techniques or knowledge

Nail Cleaner FAQs

What are VOCs and why are they harmful?

Volatile organic compounds, or VOCs, are gases that are emitted into the air from products or processes. Some are harmful by themselves, including some that cause cancer. In addition, they can react with other gases and form other air pollutants after they are in the air.

Are acetone and alcohol considered VOCs?


Do most regular nail polish removers contain VOCs?


Does Bee Naturals Clean Nails™ contain VOCs?

NO! Clean Nails™ is an acetone-free, non-toxic nail polish remover. 

Does Bee Naturals Clean Nails™ work on uv-cured gel nails?

No. Clean Nails™ works at removing nail polish and non-uv-cured gel.

Bee Naturals Clean Nails™: Non-Acetone Nail Polish Remover

Not only is Bee Naturals Clean Nails™ free of VOCs, it also helps condition the nails and cuticles. It works effectively without having to soak your nails in acetone, even to remove nail gel. You can enjoy the fun of switching out your nail polish while keeping the air you breathe cleaner and the environment around you safer.  

For more information about Clean Nails™ click here

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Dimethicone: Everything You Need To Know

When you think of a good skin moisturizer, you think of a product that makes your skin soft, smooth, hydrated, and fresh without leaving a sticky residue. When skin care products are formulated, certain products help create specific desired qualities. Dimethicone (a form of silicone) is often used as it gives a silky texture to products, helps keep skin properly hydrated, and provides a natural barrier on the skin. It’s a great addition to many skin care products, as it provides many benefits without many drawbacks. 

What is Dimethicone?

Dimethicone (polydimethylsiloxane) is described as a synthetic polymer of silicon and an emollient that works to improve the softness of the skin. It seals the spaces between the superficial dead cells of the epidermis layer of the skin. The molecules of silicone-based polymers are too large to penetrate the skin’s barrier and leave behind a silky barrier. Since it doesn’t mix with the sebum of your skin, it is often used in products designed for the skin like moisturizers, creams, primers, and lotions. 

Benefits of Using Dimethicone in Skin Care Productsnatural 4701296 640

Using dimethicone as an ingredient in skin care products can improve the efficacy, feel, and longevity of the other ingredients. It has been used as an ingredient in many different skin and hair care products for many years. Why would we want to use dimethicone in skin care products?

  • Seals in moisture: Dimethicone forms a physical barrier on the skin that helps keep in hydration and keep out outside irritants and moisture. It also helps provide protection against transepidermal water loss, which can lead to inflammation of the skin. 
  • Won’t clog pores and cause breakouts: Despite it being occlusive (meaning it seals in hydration while keeping the irritants out), it is non-comedogenic and non-acnegenic. Because of these qualities, it’s commonly used in oil-free formulas to provide long-lasting moisture without clogging pores and causing breakouts. 
  • Creates a silky feel on the skin: The main reason dimethicone is used in skin care product formulations is to provide a silky smooth finish to topical creams and lotions. It allows a product to have a light texture and non-greasy feel that spreads quickly, easily, and evenly on the skin. 
  • Controls skin’s shine: While it provides a barrier on the skin, it still allows the skin to sweat and also controls the shine of an oily complexion. 
  • Make skin’s appearance smoother: Mattifying silicones can blur light, often giving the skin an airbrushed look. 
  • Has Emollient Qualities: An emollient works to smooth and soften the skin but has a lighter, less greasy finish than other skin care ingredients, making it a great choice for all skin types
  • Protects the Skin: Dimethicone can act as a physical barrier on the skin, keeping pollutants and irritants off of the skin. 
  • Smooths Texture: Not only can it fill in fine lines and wrinkles, but it can also create a smooth skin surface, making it a great choice to use in primers. 
  • Give longwear properties to makeup: Dimethicone can give longwear properties to lipsticks and makeup, while keeping them flexible enough to not crack. 

Dimethicone is also very unreactive with other ingredients and causes a smooth glide to the formulation. They are also vegan and cruelty-free. In skin care products, silicones are hypoallergenic, non-comedogenic, and non-irritating. They can also be used in sunscreens to help them stay on better. 

Is Dimethicone Bad for Skin?

Dimethicone is a synthetic product and oftentimes is used in place of more natural ingredients like plant oils or butters. That fact shouldn’t scare you though; naturally occurring oils can sometimes be worse for skin and actually clog pores more than a synthetic product. They also have a higher chance of being allergenic to some people. In general, dimethicone is a pretty neutral substance and most people are able to use products containing it without it causing irritation to their skin.   

Drawbacks of Dimethicone 

The biggest drawbacks of dimethicone are often the negative myths about it. The myths include the idea that silicones cause acne, are bad for sensitive skin, are toxic, and suffocate the skin. Dimethicone and other silicones have been extensively studied and have been proven to be very safe and actually beneficial to the skin.  

How to Use Products Containing Dimethicone

In general, products containing dimethicone are believed to be safe for everyday use. How often and the order in which you apply your skin care products depends on what the specific products are. For instance, if you’re using it in a primer or moisturizer, it’s best to apply to fresh, clean, and damp skin. Using the product after showering is a great time to ensure you reap the most benefits of the product. Since it is occlusive, you should use your water-based products first, then apply the product containing dimethicone to optimize the absorption of products and seal them into the skin. 

Dimethicone is Safe for All Skin Types

Overall, dimethicone is a pretty neutral silicone that has been used for many years in skin care, hair care, and personal care products. Even though it is a synthetic product, it has been proven to provide many different positive benefits when used in conjunction with other ingredients in skin care products. It’s hard to find another product that is non-irritating, unreactive, and hypoallergenic. All skin types, even sensitive skin types can use products containing dimethicone with no problem. In fact, most people are able to apply undiluted silicones directly to their skin without experiencing any issues. They also haven’t been linked to any hormone disruptions or long term health effects. With all these benefits, it’s hard to ignore this key ingredient in many skin care products.

Clean Beauty: What It Is and Why It Matters (A BeeNaturals Guide)

It’s about more than cosmetics

In 2004, a British researcher named Philippa Darbre found traces of parabens in breast cancer tumors. At the time, cosmetics manufacturers used parabens extensively as a preservative. Though the data behind that particular study was not very strong, it was a wake-up call.

Suddenly, more consumers than ever started to engage in a broader conversation about cosmetics. They wanted to know what effect these products have on individuals throughout the world.

At first, the dialogue seemed little more than a fear-based grasping at straws. News outlets would report on scary scientific studies and offer little context. They would leave those without firsthand knowledge with little choice but to either overreact or ignore the studies altogether.

But something positive came out of Darbre’s research. Through it, she sounded an alarm that enabled many of us to ask more insightful questions about our beauty products. 

This new conversation is called Clean Beauty.clean beauty

The term Clean Beauty represents a positive discussion around cosmetics. It’s about the ingredients themselves, as well as how they are obtained, packaged, and produced. It’s about how cosmetics affect us as individuals and as citizens of the world.

In this guide, we’ll talk about what Clean Beauty is and what it is not. Throughout, we’ll provide you with information on how you can make more positive choices concerning your skincare.

What “Clean Beauty” Is Not

As we enter this discussion, I’d like to make a few things clear.

First, Clean Beauty is not about what brand you choose.

Clean Beauty does not set out to put down other serious cosmetics professionals who are endeavoring to do good work. It’s not a conversation in which we denigrate the brands found in expensive mall shops or the corner drug store.

Many of them do excellent work within specific parameters. Their choices, while not always “clean” in this particular sense, aren’t necessarily dangerous.

Second, Clean Beauty is not merely about what is “toxic” or “non-toxic.”

The reason is simple: toxicity is about dose and exposure.

For example, those who drink eight glasses of water a day tend to have clearer, more supple skin. Their kidneys function more freely, and they often find it easier to lose weight. People who have the correct dose of water even tend to think more clearly.

But people who drink too much water can go into a coma, have seizures, or even die. The dose is what makes the difference.

Here’s another example that’s a little more relevant to cosmetics. 

Though we at BeeNaturals don’t use SLS (sodium lauryl sulfate) for a variety of reasons, many do. In large doses, the stuff is hazardous. But assuming normal use, nearly everyone who applies it to skin or hair is safe from its adverse effects.

Third, Clean Beauty is not about being “superior.”

Though I like to point out the benefits of Clean Beauty to people, everyone makes cosmetics purchases based on a variety of factors. These factors include access and affordability. I wouldn’t want these factors to get in the way of a BeeNaturals purchase. However, I would hate it if someone felt embarrassed that their favorite products aren’t technically “clean.”

When it comes to this topic, I also think about the pressures parents face. It’s tough being a mom or dad. I prefer not to make anyone feel guilty about what skincare products they use — or do not use — on their child. 

Parents have a hard enough time as it is. Let’s leave the personal judgment out of this particular topic.

Finally, Clean Beauty is not about what’s missing from a product.

Clean formulation isn’t just saying, “We don’t use X product. Therefore, it’s clean!” There’s a lot more to it than that.

Here is what I believe the conversation should be about.

What Is Clean Beauty?clean beauty

Clean Beauty is mindfully choosing cosmetics based on four main factors:

  1. Ingredients that positively impact a person’s skin, hair, and well-being
  2. Hygienic manufacturing practices
  3. Ethical and transparent production
  4. Sustainability

That’s a lot to digest, so let’s take them one at a time.

1. Clean Beauty is about positive personal impact

When I was working forty hours a week as a nurse, I washed my hands dozens of times a day. The soap I used was “effective” in the technical sense. I was disinfecting my hands, but they became painfully dry and cracked as a result.

Eventually, I began to mindfully choose (and then make) soaps with ingredients that would not only clean my skin but also nourish it. When I did that, I was embarking on the path we now call Clean Beauty. 

As I make soaps, I want to use the best nature has to offer, like avocado oil, coconut oil, and glycerin. But ingredients that are the product of science — if they have a positive effect on a person’s wellbeing — can also be “clean.” 

As mentioned in a previous article, “soap” in any form cannot be natural. It’s the result of a chemical process called “saponification.” When someone says they want “natural soap,” they’re contradicting themselves!

However, the chemical decyl glucoside (an ingredient in our most gentle soaps) is widely regarded as safe, non-toxic, and non-inflammatory. By any measure, it’s a candidate for “Clean Beauty,” even if scientists formulated it in a laboratory.

Remember, it’s not where the ingredient comes from that makes it “clean.” It’s the effect it has on you as a whole person.

2. Clean Beauty products are produced hygienically 

In food production, workers must follow strict guidelines as they handle, store, and wash food. They are required to meet specific standards to protect those of us who eventually eat the food. When manufacturers don’t follow these practices carefully, the results can be disastrous.

The cosmetics industry has similar requirements. However, beauty products are made all over the world. Cosmetics companies may or may not consistently check to make sure their manufacturers are meeting hygiene standards.

For those who care about Clean Beauty, we want our products to be clean literally.

One of the reasons I feel so proud of our BeeNaturals products is that I know how they’re made! As a Missouri company, we produce all of our products in my home state under my supervision. We are very conscious about hygiene.

That’s not to say products produced in other parts of the world are not made hygienically. I just believe cosmetics producers must continually check that their manufacturers are meeting standards.

3. Clean Beauty products are created ethically and transparently

We who are concerned with Clean Beauty aren’t just thinking about the product itself and how it’s made. We want to know that the ingredients are obtained ethically. And we want our cosmetics manufacturers to be able to offer proof when asked. 

For example, Squalane oil, an ingredient found in nearly every moisturizer, came from shark liver for many years. 

Now, since the same oil can be found in many botanicals (including olives), there’s no reason to continue the unethical practice of over-fishing these endangered species. Yet, despite the positive strides we’ve made all over the world, it continues to occur.

There are other similar practices throughout cosmetics. For those of us concerned about Clean Beauty, we only want to do business with companies who are transparent about where they source their ingredients and how they’re tested. 

That’s why BeeNaturals is Leaping Bunny Certified — our products are never tested on animals or come from ingredients that harm animals in any way.

4. Clean Beauty products are good for the environment

Though we can tie this point to #3, this addresses a much broader topic. It asks if the company making the product is doing so in a sustainable way. Clean Beauty products must make the lowest possible environmental impact, reducing pollution at every stage in the product’s lifecycle.

Increasingly, customers want proof their cosmetics are made using sustainable practices. That’s why savvy manufacturers — as well as those with a conscience — are working harder to “go green.” 

At BeeNaturals, we value the Green Chemistry philosophy. 

For example, our product packages are fully recyclable, and the paper products are 100% compostable. In our stores and manufacturing facility, we produce next to no trash — most of what passes through our doors can be recycled or reused in some way.

Additionally, we don’t use any hazardous chemicals, so our products themselves are safe for the environment.

BeeNaturals: The difference Clean Beauty can make

I founded BeeNaturals because I wanted to combine the very best of science and nature to create products that promote healthy skin for our customer’s overall well-being. That last word, “wellbeing,” is what it’s all about — and that means more than just feeling better when you look in the mirror.

To “be well,” we must consider more factors than whether or not our product works. We want to use products that do not harm our bodies or the environment. We want to use products that promote a better world. 

For those of you who have chosen BeeNaturals for your skin, thank you for buying products that are kind to our world. 

For those of you who would like to be a part of the Clean Beauty movement, check out our products or schedule a spa treatment.

And my wish for you, in whatever you do, is to be well.  

How to Get Nourished, Hydrated Skin with Ceramides

One of the most essential parts of a woman’s skincare routine is to keep skin hydrated. Skin sheds cells that require repair to allow for more youthful skin cells to float to the surface. Three forms of Ceramides, Panthenol Vitamin B5, and Hyaluronic Acid are essential for hydrating the skin to create an effective moisture barrier for all skin types.

Every stage in life is important for proper skin hydration. Younger women typically have healthier skin, making this a crucial time to begin a proper regime for future protection. Middle-aged women are starting to see fine lines and wrinkles and an increase in dryness. Women with mature and aging skin continue to see an increase in dryness, along with flakiness as the sebaceous glands gradually lose their ability to keep skin hydrated.

How can you tell if your skin moisture barrier has been damaged or compromised?

  • Redness or rosacea
  • Flakiness
  • Peeling
  • Dryness from a lack of natural oil
  • Tightness in the face
  • Looks dull and dry
  • Dehydration from a lack of moisture
  • Irritation
  • Sensitivity
  • Normal moisturizer just doesn’t seem to work

These are all signs that your moisture barrier is needing some assistance. 

Damage to the skin barrier can also happen during season changes, particularly in the fall and winter when humidity tends to drop.  Using skin care products that contain harsh ingredients or are abrasive can damage the moisture barrier. Too much exfoliation, using strong acne products, and even cleansing too frequently can damage the moisture barrier.

So how do we maintain hydrated skin? Some of the powerhouses of the ingredients in Restore II Hydrate include three forms of Ceramides, Panthenol Vitamin B5, and Hyaluronic Acid.

Significantly Increase Skin Hydration

Ceramides are waxy molecules that limit moisture loss. Ceramides are also known to be naturally occurring long chains of lipids (fats) found in our skins’ outer layers. Ceramides are necessary for water-retention and protecting the skins’ moisture barrier. Studies show that skin hydration is significantly increased with products that contain ceramides to mimic the skin’s own natural moisturizing system. 

Hyaluronic acid is a clear, gooey substance that is naturally produced in your body. It helps to retain water, keeping tissues lubricated. This ingredient helps your skin look and feel more supple. As women age, environmental conditions and nature take a toll on this chemical. The inclusion of it into Restore II Hydrate helps minimize damage and exposure. 

Panthenol Vitamin B5 helps bind to water, holding it to the skin for moisturizing purposes. This binding and holding of the water help to maintain softness and elasticity in your skin. The dual action of Panthenol Vitamin B5 helps to seal cracks in skin with the moisture that is being attracted and bound to it.

Nourish Your Skin

When skin is nourished with high-quality ingredients, hydration increases and gives skin a healthy, youthful glow. All three forms of Ceramides, Panthenol Vitamin B5, and Hyaluronic Acid are an essential part of your skincare as they work to nourish the skin, protecting the skin from signs of aging, irritation, and dehydration. The result is plumper, smoother, and firmer skin with fewer visible lines and wrinkles.

Create Youthful Skin From Within

The three forms of Ceramides, Panthenol Vitamin B5, and Hyaluronic Acid are natural components that are found within young, healthy skin. Younger women can still benefit from ceramide-containing skincare products as they help create a protective layer that helps prevent loss of moisture. They play an essential role in keeping the skin hydrated and protected and preventing premature signs of aging by improving skin elasticity.

Ingredients That Are Amazing for All Skin Types

Ceramides, Panthenol Vitamin B5, and Hyaluronic Acid levels found naturally in the skin start to decline as we get older. These ingredients are known to be anti-aging, “skin-replenishing”, and rejuvenating to aging skin. Since Ceramides, Panthenol Vitamin B5, and Hyaluronic Acid are naturally part of your skin, they are ideal for all skin types, including sensitive, oily, and breakout-prone skin. Ceramides, Panthenol Vitamin B5, and Hyaluronic Acid can even reduce facial skin inflammation, restoring the skin to its natural, healthy state.

Ultimate Protection Of The Skin’s Moisture Barrier

It’s important to protect your skin’s moisture barrier. This is the primary protection of the outer or upper layer of the face. It performs several functions, mainly to maintain moisture within the skin to keep it hydrated and plump. The moisture barrier also keeps dirt, toxins, and bacteria from clogging up pores and damaging your skin.

Clean Formula You Can Trust

Bee Naturals Hydrate II is formulated with the highest quality ingredients to promote healthy skin. Hydrate II has a specific, therapeutic purpose based on clients’ needs for a well-maintained moisture barrier. Purity, safety, and excellence is top priority.  Hydrate II provides the best that nature and science have to offer to create cleanly derived products for the face.

Be kind to your skin and pamper it with nourishing ingredients like the ones in our Restore II product or Pore Refining Serum.  Your skin will thank you for it!

Key Benefits of Niacinamide (Vit. B3)


Is Niacinamide a Skincare Magic Bullet?

If you take a stroll down the skincare aisle at any big box store or even skincare specialty shops, you’ll see big, fancy labels touting the latest combination of vitamins for healthy skin.

Vitamins aren’t some super-secret scientific creation. The truth is, vitamins are basically the building blocks our bodies use every day to do what it needs to do.

Without even realizing it you are creating new skin cells, repairing bones, and growing muscle fibers.

If we didn’t have these building blocks, our bodies would soon stop functioning as intended, and we would start running into problems.

Vitamins are clearly critical when it comes to keeping our skin healthy. And as with many other things in life, healthy skin is happy skin.

Niacinamide (Vitamin B3) May Be the Key to Happy Healthy Skin

From charcoal masks and creams made from snail mucus to products infused with CBD, there’s a lot of natural skincare items out there making big promises but delivering little results.

So, it’s only natural to be wary of what you put on your body as well as what you spend your hard-earned money on.

However, the narrative is quite a bit different when it comes to vitamin B-3 (Niacinamide).

Niacinamide can ease dreaded dermatological conditions including dry, sagging skin, and sun damage.

The best part is it’s natural, safe, and scientifically proven to be one of the best skincare ingredients out there today.

Want to Keep Your Skin Firm and Moist Skin? Try Vitamin B3

Niacinamide delivers a big boost when it comes to keeping your skin firm and moist. This is one of the reasons we consider it to be as close to a magic bullet as the natural skincare industry is likely to get.

If we think back to high school biology, we’ll remember our hair, nails, and skin are made of a combination of proteins. Keratin is the main protein in the outermost layer of our skin.

Niacinamide encourages our bodies to ramp up its production of protein especially keratin. It also rejuvenates our skin’s structure. A healthier structure helps to keep skin rigid and firm.

It also strengthens our skin’s moisture barrier. Ceramide is responsible for creating a barrier of fatty tissue (ceramide barrier) within the outermost layer of our skin that helps to keep our skin retain water and a moist, supple texture.

Fight Back against Sun Damage, Dark Spots, and Wrinkles

Sun damage, dark spots, and wrinkles, for many women these are the trifecta of terror when it comes to having skin that ages gracefully.

With the right knowledge and a little bit of persistence, you can fight back against these three troublemakers.

Sun Damage

The sun is essential to life. Without it our world would be icy and empty. On the other hand, catching too many UV rays can wreak havoc on your skin.

For many women, one of the most aggravating parts of aging is developing dark splotches on their skin. Most folks usually refer to these spots as “age spots” or “liver spots”.

These names are a bit of a skincare fib. They’re not directly related to age, and they actually have nothing to do with the liver.

As you can probably guess by now, these brown splotches are usually caused by too much sun exposure.

The bronze complexion many sun worshipers speak is not a sign of health and fitness. Actually, it means your skin has been damaged by the sun.

When skin cells absorb too many UV rays, they release melanin to try and fight back against the sun’s damage. It’s the melanin that causes our skin to develop that sought after and complexion.

However, the release of melanin is also responsible for the dark color and rough texture of age spots.

Undoing UV Damage

Research has shown niacinamide can repair skin cell DNA. This is a fancy way of saying it can undo the damage that leads to dark spots and discolored skin.

Rubbing on some niacinamide cream is not a get out of jail free card. Sunscreen is still a necessity. The old cliché holds true. “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”


It’s a safe bet that even as far back as the days when the ancient Greeks were using honey and olive oil to keep their skin looking good, there was an ambitious, ancient dermatologist trying to come up with a clever concoction to get rid of the wrinkles.

Thankfully, these days, we have something a little better than honey and olive oil. You guessed it, niacinamide.

Collagen is an essential protein whose job it is to help our skin maintain its elasticity and keep its natural ability to “bounce back” into shape.

Unfortunately, our collagen production drops off as we age. As we lose collagen, wrinkles slowly but surely began to pop up.

The bad news starts in our mid-20s and typically keeps getting worse all the way through menopause. Once we hit our mid-20s, we slowly begin to lose collagen.

Five years into menopause our collagen production declines by about 30%.

Fighting Wrinkles

We don’t throw up our hands, avoid the mirror as our wrinkles become more frequent and deeper year after year.

Niacinamide to the rescue. This little protein acts as a time machine for our skin. This fountain of youth increases collagen production. Studies have shown in as little as eight weeks, treatment with Niacinamide can create a noticeable difference in the appearance of wrinkles. In 12 weeks, many saw a significant increase in their skin’s elasticity, its ability to bounce back into shape.

Enjoy the Benefits of Younger Looking Skin

Niacinamide truly gives women the best of both worlds. We are able to enjoy the fruits of our wisdom experience while keeping our skin healthy and beautiful as we age.

Increasing firmness, reversing the sun damage, and undoing wrinkles, this amazing protein is the Trinity of healthy skin.

2020 has been a trying year for all of us. Reward yourself with the gift of youthful, beautiful, and healthy skin. Add skincare products with niacinamide to your daily routine!


Products that contain NIACINAMIDE (Vit. B3)



Understanding the Top 10 Anti-Aging Ingredients

Understanding the Top 10 Anti-Aging Ingredients in Skincare Products, and Why Using Them Will Help Keep Your Skin Healthy, Glowing and Beautiful at Any Age

Imagine if you could jump in a tiny box, click a button, and emerge 10 minutes later looking 10 years younger. Anti-aging ingredients are among the most searched and sought after for this reason alone — no one really wants to have ‘aged’ looking skin. And yes, there are some really effective skincare products out there, but keep in mind that nothing can totally turn back the hands of time. The good news? It’s never too late to start taking care of your skin.

If you’re younger, using these ingredients in your 20’s, 30’s and 40’s can help prevent premature signs of aging, and have people raving about your beautiful skin when you’re in your 50’s, 60’s and 70’s! Remember that old saying: “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure”? When it comes to investing in your skin, what you do now will save you a lot of angst and money down the road! 

Anti-Aging Ingredients to Look For and Why

#1 Niacinamide aka Vitamin B3

This skin vitamin has been shown to help fight free-radical damage to collagen, brighten dark spots and help manage acne and oily skin, Look for a serum or lotions that contain at least 6% and up to 20% to reap the benefits of this powerhouse that suitable for all skin types. Make sure you don’t mix this with an acidic serum as that can convert the niacinamide to nicotinic acid, which may be irritating to some complexions. 

Bee Naturals products that contain niacinamide: Oil Free Moisturizer, Queen Bee Facial Nectar, Foaming Face Wash, MelaClear Pigment Lightening Creme, Anti Aging Blemish Creme

#2 Retinol

No, we’re not talking about Retin-A and its derivatives. These are prescription strength, and frankly, often these powerful products prove to be too drying for many complexions. Rather, find a product that contains retinol, which is converted slowly to usable form.  Retinols, in general, are ‘gold standard’ for overall skin vibrancy and have an abundance of evidence to back their use.

Retinoids, including retinol speed cell-turnover, meaning that the skin will shed the upper skin cells more rapidly, thus aiding the reduction of fine lines, wrinkles, dark spots, and acne. It is also believed that retinol helps increase collagen production, which aids in helping skin stay firm. Collagen production, unfortunately, decreases as we age.

No matter if you’re using a prescription-strength retinol product or over the counter, retinol products tend to cause some irritation and/or dryness when first used and you may experience some flakiness, stitching or redness, so start slowly, with less product, then gradually increase, over time and be sure to use a moisturizer over the treated area to help alleviate dryness and absolutely use sunscreen to protect the fresh skin revealed beneath. 

Bee Naturals Products that contain Retinol: Bio Phyto Nutrient Oil, Queen Bee Facial Nectar, Queen Bee Facial Serum

#3 Vitamin C and it’s trifecta companions, ferulic acid and vitamin E

Dr. Sheldon Pinnell, et. al., discovered the antioxidant power of Vitamin C on the skin and that the positive effects are potentiated by the addition of ferulic acid and Vitamin E.  This original cocktail is known for its skin lightening/brightening powers, ameliorating oxidative damage and also having a protective effect from cumulative UV radiation effects. It’s best to use a more stable form of Vitamin C known as either sodium ascorbyl phosphate or magnesium ascorbyl phosphate, which are more stable against light and oxygen degradation and are more pH friendly to facial tissues.

Bee Naturals products that contain Vitamin C: Ultra AA Serum, Vitamin C CremeQueen Bee Facial Serum

Anti-Aging and Acids

Acids!!? On my face? Yes, these ingredients are the rock stars of facial ‘resurfacing’ or refinement.  Some use mechanical exfoliation, such as microdermabrasion or dermaplaning but these should generally be done by a professional and can be too irritating for fragile, sensitive skin. Rather, consider these ingredients that you can control.

#4 Glycolic Acid

Glycolic acid is the gold standard exfoliant and overall brightener in professional circles. It is one of the two major alpha hydroxy acids (AHA’s) and can be found in many different products such as chemical peels, toners, creams, etc.  Its exfoliant actions dissolve the old skin cells away from the new, revealing fresh, bright, skin, minus, fine lines, dark spots, and blemish scars.

It’s available in various strengths and products, usually not stronger than 10% in over the counter products, which can be used several times a week but may go up to  70% in professional-grade peels used by physicians and estheticians.  These products are used under supervision and much less frequently.  There is ‘downtime’ associated with the use of these stronger peel type products.  It is imperative to wear sunscreen when using this product.

Bee Natural products that contain Glycolic Acid:  Clarifying Face Wash, Glycolic Renewal Creme, Fruit Acid AHA/BHA Exfoliating Creme, AHA Rejuvenate 15

#5 Salicylic Acid

Salicylic acid is the sole BHA, or beta hydroxy acid that is gentler than glycolic acid, and more specifically used in the treatment of acne. It too has exfoliating effects that are always helpful in softening the signs of fine lines and wrinkles and, since it is an oil-soluble ingredient, it’s especially helpful in keeping oil-filled pores clean – good especially if you’re prone to blackheads. Ditto on the sunscreen.

Bee Natural products that contain Salicylic Acid:  Clarifying Face Wash, Acne Clarifying Oil, Fruit Acid AHA/BHA Exfoliating Creme, Blemish RX Drying Lotion

#6 Lactic Acid

Lactic acid is another alpha hydroxy acid that can be combined with glycolic, or used alone. It has all the same characteristics as glycolic acid, but is generally a bit more gentle, and has ‘hydrating’ properties, making it a good choice for skin that is dull AND dry.  Again, as with all AHA’s and BHA’s new skin revealed when using these products is more susceptible to the sun, so be sure to wear at least SPF 25.

Bee Natural products that contain Lactic: Glycolic Renewal Creme, AHA Rejuvenate 15, Reconstructor Rx

#7 Hyaluronic Acid

Hyaluronic acid has become almost a household word these days, but it is a terrific humectant that attracts moisture to the skin, making it look more plump, moist, and youthful. Hyaluronic acid along with glycerin is very common in skin care products and they typically are well tolerated in most skin types since they are hydrators, not exfoliators. If your skin tends to be chronically dehydrated, this is an ingredient to look for in products.

Bee Naturals Products that contain Hyaluronic Acid. Hyaluronic Serum, Hydrating Facial Freshener Hand & Body Nectar, Ultra AA Serum, CC Serum, Oil-Free Moisturizer, Rose Geranium Moisture Veil,  Oil Free Night Repair Creme, Queen Bee Ultimate Eye Serum, Rejuvenating Creme Cleanser, MelaClear Pigment Lightening Creme,

#8 Ceramides

Ceramides are one of several lipids or fatty acids that help hold your skin together- sort of like flexible mortar. Skin that is chronically dry and/or mature will benefit from using products that contain these ingredients.  They restore skin moisture by locking it into the skin, they protect the skin, help reduce inflammation and soften dry, dull skin. 

Bee Naturals Products that contain Ceramides. Pore Refining SerumRejuvenating Creme Cleanser, Tinted Facial Primer 25% Zinc Oxide

#9 Panthenol

Panthenol is vitamin B5 and like glycerin, honey, and hyaluronic acid, it has both humectant and moisturizing properties making it a great addition to skincare products for dry, dehydrated, and mature skin. Panthenol also has anti-inflammatory properties and may aid in wound healing.  Oh, and it’s good in hair care products, too.

Bee Naturals Products that contain Panthenol.  Rejuvenating Creme CleanserAnti Aging Blemish Creme, Oil Free Night Repair Creme Oil Free, MelaClear Pigment Lightening Creme,

#10 Sunscreen

Yes, we know you’re probably tired of hearing this, but you can’t worship the sun and have youthful, healthy skin.  Now, what you choose to use is another story altogether.  The debate rages about the relative benefits and potential hazards of chemical sunscreens too lengthy to go into here, but whatever you choose, use it or you’ll be inviting all those lines, wrinkles, and pigmentation right back to your face and breakdown of collagen. 

We prefer using products with zinc oxide in a finely milled form to provide non-toxic UVA and UVB sun protection. We do not sell an SPF rated sunscreen (due to high cost of lab testing to verify the rating claims), however, a good, non-chemical start for sun protection is our non-nano particle Tinted Facial Primer 25% Zinc Oxide. It can be used over your chosen sunscreen, or alone. 

More about zinc oxide:  What is Zinc Oxide Sunscreen?    EWG Sunscreens Wallet Guide Download

Final Thoughts

It’s important to stay educated. Have an understanding of what you’re putting on your face as well as why you’re doing it. Remember, too, that it’s never too late to start treating your skin well.  


Serums vs Moisturizers – What’s the Difference?

Serums and Moisturizers Explained

Serums are typically thinner and lighter than moisturizers and have a wide variety of functions. They usually don’t contain oils.  Typically, serums have active ingredients in them that penetrate deeply into your skin.

Moisturizers are thicker and creamier than serums. Serums are usually liquid or semi-liquid products, whereas moisturizers are usually in either a lotion or cream form.  These are emulsions (a mix of water and oils).

Serums can be water-based and can also be oil-based. Water-based serums should be applied directly to clean, slightly moist skin for the most effective delivery penetration of active ingredients and hydrating ingredients.

Bee Naturals Ultra AA Serum is a product that delivers water-soluble Vitamin C and other antioxidants deep within the skin. It also hydrates. Think of hydrating products as those that ‘give your skin a drink of water’.

Queen Bee Facial Serum is an oil-based serum that also delivers oil-soluble antioxidants to the skin but is oil-based and very moisturizing and lubricating.  This type of serum should be used after water-based serums are applied.

If water-based serums are applied after an oil-based serum or moisturizer, the water hydrating compounds and active ingredients can’t penetrate through the oil layer on the skin, because it creates a ‘barrier’ that water can’t penetrate.

How do I know which is which?

Look at the label!

If the product contains water in the list of ingredients, it is a water-soluble product and should be used before any oil containing products.

If it primarily contains oils, it is an oil-based product and should be applied after water-based serums.

So, in general, a hydrating water-based serum delivers moisture and active ingredients to your skin. Moisturizers, though they may be hydrating provide a lubricating, protective layer that prevents the evaporation of water (moisture) from your skin.

So then, now that we know some skin care basics, how do we best optimize the effects of our skincare products?

How to Best Use Skincare Products

  1. Make sure your skin is well cleansed – clean, but not stripped of all healthy oils.  This is accomplished in two ways:
  2. Use a gentle low foaming cleanser to thoroughly remove makeup and debris, but not so much as to ‘strip’ the skin to the point of squeaky clean. Gentle, gentle! Bee Naturals Queen Bee Cleansing Milk or Rose Geranium Foaming Facial Cleanser are good choices, or for very dry or nutrient-deprived skin, consider Rejuvenating Creme Cleanser.
  3. Ensure that your skin is adequately exfoliated, meaning that surface dead skin cells are removed.  Typically, use products that contain gentle acids such as those with glycolic acid, or lactic acid or gentle enzymes to remove surface dullness. Bee Naturals Enzyme Exfoliating Creme or AHA Rejuvenate 15 Creme used several times weekly to help with cell turn-over and allow vital ingredients to better penetrate the skin, where they’re needed. We recommend using a soft terry face cloth. Unless the skin is very soiled, we advise against the use of mechanical exfoliants (scrubs) If you are plagued with numerous blackheads, try using Bee Naturals Facial Polish periodically to help soften and remove excess debris.  It’s customizable and less likely to cause abrasions than some ‘scrubs’.
  4. Hydrate after cleansing with either Bee Naturals Hydrating Facial Freshener  or Calming Tonic prior to applying moisturizer, especially if you live in an arid or dry climate.
  5. If your skin is oily and/or acne-prone, the use of a hydrating, serum-weight moisturizer may be perfect for you. For example, Bee Naturals Oil-Free Moisturizer (a serum) may be all you need, or you can add our Oil Free Day Creme or Oil Free Night Repair Creme.
  6. If your skin is normal/combination, use a slightly heavier moisturizer, such as Queen Bee Facial Nectar or Rose Geranium Moisture Veil.  Both deliver nutrients, moisture, and lubrication to your skin.
  7. If your skin is dry, you may consider using Bee Naturals Creme Luxe Intense Moisture Creme or Queen Bee Facial Serum.

Special Concerns about excessively oily skin / acne:

Often those with excessively oily skin and/or acne believe that super-scrubbed skin is the only way to deal with these issues. While it is an understandable conclusion, it is also absolutely the incorrect approach. We often see clients that have oily skin and/or acne, but the surface of their skin is dehydrated and dry looking in appearance. If overly aggressive treatment is given to this skin type, the skin becomes so dry on the surface that the natural, necessary lubricating oils can’t make it to the surface where they are needed. Because of the surface dryness, this treatment further aggravates acne and oiliness and often contributes to whiteheads, blackheads, and additional acne. Often the skin will actually get oilier in response to this aggressive approach making matters worse for this skin situation. Moist Skin does not equate to Oily Skin.

With these basic skin care steps in mind, consider incorporating one of our many specialty cremes to your regimen if you have particular skin issues.

CC Serum for those with redness or rosacea.

Vitamin C Creme for mature, sun-damaged skin that is aged and dry or may be showing signs of sun damage.

Anti-Aging Blemish Cream for those that still suffer from occasional acne, but are also concerned with signs of aging.

Glycolic Renewal is a gentle, but effective exfoliating creme that helps brighten the complexion and helps your products absorb better.

Fruit Acid AHA/BHA Exfoliating Creme for those who need a bit more powerful exfoliating and brightening power or have occasional acne. Gentle salicylic acid helps here in addition to mixed AHA fruit acids.

Hyaluronic Serum for those who need extra hydration, prior to applying moisturizer.

Pore Refining Serum for those who have enlarged pores due to aging and loss of collagen… It’s hydrating, too!

Answers to Questions About Hand Sanitizer


In Response to Questions About Hand Sanitizer

Our hand sanitizer is made with a minimum of 65% alcohol, as required for effectiveness.

Hand sanitizer does not expire. Yes, really.

To those of you who have recently ordered hand sanitizer from us or those who plan to, please be advised that due to the unavailability of our usual gelling ingredient, carbomer, we were forced to convert to xanthan gum as a thicker. Xanthan gum does not create a thick, crystal clear sanitizer that you may be accustomed to using, but the upside is that you can put it into a spray container, as well, which in some circumstances may be more convenient to use.

Though perhaps not as aesthetically pleasing, it is made to specifications required for sanitizing hands with an alcohol content of at least 65%, hydrating glycerin and soothing essential oils of sweet orange and lavender, which now, considering the shortage, is a good thing. We wanted to be able to continue to do our part to help those at risk to have this product available at a cost after free shipping, which leaves us little or no profit.

As soon as carbomer becomes available again, we will resume using it in our hand sanitizer.

As stated in our return policy, we are not able to accept returns on hand sanitizer.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]