I have begun to wonder about the training and regulation control of beauticians in Australia as over the past few weeks I have had my nails scrubbed until they bleed, eyelashes put on that have pulled out all of my own and a spray tan that made me look more like a tiger than the bronzed goddess they advertised.
As we strive for beauty and shell out more and more cash it seems every woman and her dog has become a beautician and it is hard to know what you are ending up with. Many of the treatments I have been getting I not only regret wasting the money on them I also end up damaging myself and looking worse than I did to begin with (falling out eyelashes doesnt look hot on anybody).
I have started to become a little annoyed as when you go to get your nails done, pay good money, you expect to get your nails done. And it is not like I go to the cheap nail salon on the corner (we’ve all seen the 60 minutes episodes of people losing their fingers due to nail infections). But I have had a few shellac manicures done where the “shellac” comes off in a week (salons are not allowed to use fake shellac polish) and others where they are so rough my cuticles have bled.
It makes me want to go natural or do many of these treatments at home. Im still growing back the eyelashes from the hard stiff false looking eyelash extensions I got. There was so much glue it took another beautician half a very painful hour to get them off. They were advertised as the highest quality natural silk lashes…pffft more like boar bristles! Not only a big waste of money, but a week of looking like an idiot AND my long lashes are now stumpy!.
I think beauticians need to up their game….and we need to not look at advertising but only go to clinics that we have heard are good through word of mouth. BEWARE THE BAD BEAUTICIANS….They are everywhere, they will take your money, your dignity and damage your beauty. They will also make you lose faith in beauty treatments altogether.
YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED…
Ebrium Fractional Laser vs Alexandrite Laser
Do you want to look younger, get rid of wrinkles, pigmentation and build new collagen? With new technologies all of this is apparently possible – with lasers. They have been around for years now but the cost used to be huge and many did not want to stay at home with a burnt face to get the results. But with newer technology lasers are now affordable AND with hardly any down time at all. But it seems every man and his dog has jumped on the laser band wagon and lasers can be very confusing with; laser resurfacing, ipl, fractional and fraxel just to get started. It is hard to figure out what is going to make you beautiful, waste your money or even permanently burn you!
The quality and cost of lasers differ dramatically and you can now have a treatment done to your face down at your local beauty clinic or (or even nail salon) for around $100 but the staff will often seem untrained/young/unknowing. And if you research lasers on the internet there are so many horror stories that you will be put of lasers for life.
Lasers can do wonders for the skin, as I have found but you should be picky when choosing your salon. Make sure you feel comfortable with the technician, ask to see training certificates and ask the type of laser they will be using as this makes a big difference to the type of results you will get. Some clinics use cheap or old lasers that will give you poor results and waste your time and money. Once you know the qualification and laser – GO HOME AND RESEARCH THEM! The qualification may sound good but it may in fact be a short course. Ensure the laser is new and suits your needs, some are better suited for wrinkles/collagen building and some are better for pigmentation removal. I did this with a few clinics and found that in most I did not feel comfortable with the training of the staff (they didn’t seem to know what the laser did, or the type) before I found one I wanted to use.
In the end I chose one that was a laser clinic and they used the Q-Switched Alexandrite Laser. In my google search I found this laser worked on the improving pigment issues in the skin which was my main concern (melasma, brown pigment). The Alexandrite laser goes deep into the skin, it hits the pigment, and the pigment absorbs the laser light. The pigment then begins to break down and your bodies natural defences take over and elimaente the pigment from your body. This is seen over about a week period as the pigment rises to the surface of the skin as brown crusts or dark freckles and then flake off leaving behind clear skin. This laser also rejuvenates the skin and helps with fine lines and wrinkles.
The whole process takes around 15 minutes from start to end and is painful. You do not have any numbing cream. The technician moves over your face in sections stopping when you need a break. When it is over you look awful. Your whole face is very red and burnt, and your face feels very raw. I had to walk through the mall to my car in the car park and people looked at me with slight shock. Over the next 7 days you look slightly burnt and as the pigment rises you get brown scabbing. I just carried on my normal activities and no one really look at me. THEN once the pigment flakes off your skin starts to look amazing! You will be so pleased with the results. I was. Everyone commented on my beautiful skin. I had nice skin to start with but did not like the melasma but this made my whole skin texture much better and gave me beautiful skin. You normally need two treatments, three if you are very sun damaged. After ten days I had another treatment which was not as bad as the first one. Not as much scabbing either as I did not have much pigment left.
Lasers can not permanently fix melasma as t is too deep under the skin and will always lay dormant waiting to return if it is exposed to hormones ( the pill, pregnancy) or the sun. But they will fix sun damage. If you are prone to melasma they make a huge difference and you can avoid the pill and the sun or get top up treatments if you plan to get pregnant or want to stay on the hormonal pill. After almost a year I have noticed some melasma below my eye so decided to get one more tretment but this time decided to go for fractional as it is supposed to make dramatic changes to wrinkles and lines as well.
Alexandrite and Fractional lasers work in a different ways. The fractional laser goes deeper into the skin affecting both the dermis and the epidermis.The laser destroys thousands of microscopic columns which triggers your body to produce new healthy collagen and tissue to replace these columns, leading to a more youthful and plumper look. This is considered one of the best lasers to use with the best results as it goes deeper then many other lasers such as the alexandrite, yet has less down time then a Fraxel laser which has great results but a long healing time.
After the big google I decided on fractional with the Ebrium laser. It was not cheap! The cost $1500. And it is recommended you get 1-5 treatments to get the best results, but my skin is good and at that price I was only getting one. When you arrive they put numbing cream on your face for half an hour (you need numbing cream with fractional as it goes much deeper into the skin) then a technician lasers the face in the same way as the Alexandrite, but with much less pain. After the procedure they put ice cold cloths on your face for half an hour and you can feel the heat coming from your skin. After wards I look slightly sun burnt but hardly noticable and not too painful (no where near as bad as Alexandrite). I look normal in the morning. My skin becomes sandpapery over the next few days and dry feeling but nothing major. I do not notice any changes in my skins texture/appearance and the pigment is exactly the same. Not the best $1500 Ive ever spent.
To summarise the two:
- You look pretty unattractive for nearly a week. Face looked red and raw for 2 then had scabs for 5.
- The pain was tolerable (just) during procedure but was painful!
- Cheap…Cost was only $240 per treatment, two needed.
- Results = amazing.
- There was no. I went shopping straight after procedure and had a head ache but my face looked fine. During week had dry skin with rough texture.
- The procedure takes a lot longer because they put on numbing cream and cooling cloths, but the pain is very tolerable.
- The cost is expensive at $1500, especially as it is recommended up to 5 treatments.
- I saw no results.
I will have Alexandrite again but at $1500 for no results I would not have Fractional again.
Does Nioxin help prevent Baldness?
Nioxin Research Laboratories claims that Nioxin can prevent androgenic alopecia (male pattern baldness) by decreasing the amount of DHT that is on your scalp. DHT, also known as dihydrotestosterone, is the main cause of male pattern baldness. DHT is actually a compound that your body (both men and women) produce naturally. DHT is a by-product of testosterone. Dihyrdrotestosterone can attach to hair follicles that are not genetically programed to resist the compound and progressively shrink them. This is what causes “thinning hair”. Nioxin does not contain any proven ingredients that remove DHT, there is no evidence that it removes DHT and they do not claim to be a hair loss product.
What Nioxin does claim to be is a high quality shampoo that rids the scalp of extra sebum and product build up which allows the follicles to grow. It also reduces inflammation and provides the scalp with additional nutrients giving your follicles the optimum environment to grow in.
Nioxin comes in a three step process containing the shampoo which rids the hair of extra sebum and product build up, a conditioner which provides essential oils a minerals to the hair and scalp and a leave in nourishing scalp treatment which provides nutrients and prevents any additional build up.
Nioxin claims 9 out of 10 people experience a “thickening effect” with daily product use. However, scientists say that while hair might seem thicker, it is not actually thicker. The leave-in scalp treatment contains ingredients that can coat the hair, making it slightly stiffer and giving the illusion of greater body.
So is Nioxin worth it?
If you want to buy Nioxin for the DHT removing properties then buy something that is proven like a shampoo with ketoconazole, you can buy Nizoral for about 1/4 of the price of Nioxin. But if you are buying it for the other ingredients that help the hair and scalp be in optimum condition to promote hair growth, then it is worth a try. I used this product for awhile and I admit it made my hair shiny and bouncy which for people with thinning hair gets harder to do. When the hair follicles minaturize the hair gets finer and drier, less shine and bounce. Nioxin also had a great protein mask and a sunscreen spray which I have not really seen in other prodcucts which shows they really understand thin hair. Thin and fine hair need protection from the sun, not just because you get a burnt scalp but because the UV rays damage and break down the hair itself and it does this much easier on a fine hair shaft, leaving it dry and damaged. I ALWAYS wear a hat. But in saying all the good things about Nioxin, I did not see my any hair grow back, and it is very expensive.
The sunscreen spray is around $70, and if you are like me you are already investing a good deal of money in treatments, supplements etc.. then you really need to consider if you need it, is it worth investing this amount of money in a shampoo that makes your hair just shiny and bouncy?
If you have the money, I would say yes…at least its not doing harm as I have found many of the shampoos today are.
If you dont, get Nizoral, use it once a week and get yourself a good quality sulphate free shampoo…
Some of us aren’t blessed with thick flowing luscious hair but in this day and age it seems you do not have to be, as hair can be brought and attached in many different ways.
But for some of us, those with fine and thinning hair are hair extensions really worth it.
I have very fine hair which is thin on the top and I get jealous of women with long flowing ponytails and thick bouncy curls. Many hairdressers have informed me that most women in Sydney these days do not have all natural hair and in fact have additional pieces added and when out and about I have seen many tell-tale signs of the hair extension.
So I began to wonder if hair extensions could be the answer for me.
I first got individual hair extensions which set me back $2000 (I decided a long time ago that with hair like mine, money is no object), and after 3 weeks removed them as they were pulling out my hair! Devastated I decided hair extensions were not for me…But talking to people about all the different kinds I thought maybe I had tried the wrong kind, maybe I should at least look in to it.
I researched all different types of extensions, and decided on weft hair extensions. I decided tape wefts were not good for my type of hair as they damaged hair, especially thin and fine hair. I already own clip ins wefts but my hair is so fine you can see the clips. So I decided to try wefts that permanently attached to your hair.
A weft extension is the same as a clip in, it’s a long strip of hair that’s like a curtain which gets attached to your natural hair. The hair technician told me that it would not pull out my hair as the weight distribution is over a large area where as individual extensions are pulling on small amounts of hair.
I went and got wefts put in, I got two long ones put in along the back and two short ones at the side. I got Russian hair which is very good quality hair and is very fine hair to match my fine hair texture. If you have fine hair or light hair you need to get European or Russian hair as Asian hair texture will be to thick for you and it will have been bleached many times to get to you colour leaving it in poor condition. The quality of the hair is very important as poor quality hair will end up knotty and pull out your natural hair.
Wefts are usually attached by braiding your natural hair and sewing the weft to the braid, but with thin hair this puts too much tension on the natural hair and can cause it to break or fall out. So the hair technician took parts of my hair and parts of the weft and clamped them together with a micro bead ( about 3-4 per weft) securely.
Once the wefts were in the hair was cut to a length I like (I asked for shorter, as the less weight of the hair the less tension on your natural hair) and styled.
The first few night sleeping were uncomfortable and I could feel tension on my natural hair and head. After a week I hardly notice them at all except for the up keep.
Are they right for me?
- I have to wash and blow dry my hair everyday for them to look any good and to blend in with my own hair, this is damaging to my own hair as my own hair is dry much faster than the extensions.
- I like to do regrowth/conditioning treatments 3x per week which is hard with the extensions
- When they are done they look good, but 90% of the time I pull them back into a plait and they are in the way.
- I can feel tension on my natural hair and scalp.
- I am very restricted in the hair styles i can do; low pony, plait or out. I have air pieces I love such as a bun I wear up high that I can no longer wear and I LOVE.
Over all I have had them for three weeks and they were fun…But I am going to get them out next week. I will ask her to very small clips on to them so I can keep them as clip ins, and wear them when I go out sometimes (hopefully without seeing the clips). But over all they are more hassle then they are worth. They restrict me from doing many things, the up keep is not worth the look and most of the time the look is average and I believe they are damaging my hair which is the worst part about it.
So you can decide on this if you think they are right for you….
Check out my youtube video http://youtu.be/PxxSr7djgfE to see my extensions
Green Tea has been used by many cultures for hair loss for centuries and it has been talked about as a revolutionary hair loss product for years yet with such big money in hair loss I have to wonder why hasnt more reliable studies been done.
Green tea has many beneficial ingredients that could help with hair loss. One being catechins, which are responsible for improving blood circulation and have high levels of anti oxidants. It also contain polyphenols which is a strong anti oxidant and in a study on the effects of polyphenolic compounds (using green tea) results showed that 33% of the mice who received polyphenol extract in their drinking water, had significant hair regrowth during six months of treatment where as the control group who did not receive the polyphenols had no growth. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16173333
There are different ways of taking green tea; drinking a cup, taking green tea extract supplements or using it topically (putting it on your head). You can buy it in shampoo (which you wash straight out), tip a cup of it on your head (its too weak) or drink a cup (you would need to drink it all day). But when talking about getting any results research has shown we need take an extract supplement or as I will explain next use it topically in a strong dose.
I am going to be talking about using it topically because in a study where in cultured hair follicles, the application of a 95% green tea extract more than doubled the length of hair follicles and hair growth almost tripled. In the cultured skin cells, the extract increased the growth of new cells in a dose-dependent manner.
This study also got me excited…excited enough to give green tea a go and see if it really can help me grow more hair.
I have thought about taking high doses of green tea extract but there is controversy whether Green tea reduces or increases DHT (this is what makes your hair fall out if you have female pattern baldness). Most say it reduces DHT and increases hair growth but I am not willing to take the risk of losing any of my precious hairs.
So until then I am sticking to what is proven and making my own topical solution. In the study they used high levels of green tea and ethanol as the carrier. I am using almond oil as the carrier as I do not want the drying effects of ethanol (alcohol) and studies show oil as a good carrier (a carrier is essential to deliver the product).
How I made it:
I took 6 bags of Green Tea and put them into a sauce pan, I added 1/4 cup almond oil and brought to boil. I also added some ginger and peppermint as these are also proven to aid circulation but they are not essential, they were just on the bench. I simmered for around half hour until the oil turn green. I cooled, then sieved the oil into a small squirt bottle then applied some onto my scalp, massaging well. Leave for an hour or more then wash. I will do this twice a week.
I have added a video…check it out at http://youtu.be/KPpFtoUTsF4
I have made this blog as I research hair loss, how to nourish hair and how to regrow hair so much I could probably do a degree on it. I wish there was a site that shared real information on hair loss for women written by women who are experiencing hair loss as I know there are sooo many women out there (and men) who feel like me….Im not saying there are no sites, but there are so many hair loss sites its hard to find honest ones and ones that talk about what I want to know (What works). I want a site for women who know what is like to sadly stare enviously at long flowing pony tails when they have a short unhealthy one, who spend all their money on hair care products that do nothing and dread the hair dresser because they know they will get the pitying look and yet another sales pitch about a great thickening product. Not a site written by someone who says they hate their fine hair and when you see them they have masses and then try to sell you things.
So I have made this blog page to share my info….and I have just embarked on an almost insane plan to try out many different natural herbs etc…to get back my hair, and make my fine hair healthier. After years/days/hours of research I have found many products, herbs and remedies that have scientific research proving they either grow stronger hair, make hair grow faster or GROW BACK HAIR! So I have brought many, many of these herbs and products (most of them natural) and am going to test them out!! …and let you all know what I think of each of them.