Is your skincare routine actually causing damage to your skin? We answer that question in today’s episode with licensed aesthetician and holistic skincare expert, Danny Neifert. She has over twenty years of experience with natural product formulating as well as hands-on individual treatments with clients. She is a clean beauty advocate and speaker who loves to bring skin health back down to earth through story and practicality.
In this episode we talk about the state of the skincare industry, the best skincare regime you can take, how often you should exfoliate your skin, and so much more!
Get 20% off anything in Danny’s store here: https://www.skinharmonics.com/podcast/
Dr. Ann- Marie Barter is a Functional Medicine and Chiropractic Doctor at Alternative Family Medicine & Chiropractic. She is the clinic Founder of Alternative Family Medicine & Chiropractic that has two offices one in Longmont and Denver. They treat an array of health conditions overlooked or under-treated by conventional medicine, called the “grey zone”. https://altfammed.com/ https://drannmariebarter.com/
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Thank you so much for joining us here today on the Fearless Health podcast. I’m your host, Dr. Anne-Marie Barter. And today we have a very special guest and we are talking all about skin care and why the current approach to skin care is toxic and could be damaging your skin. So you don’t want to miss this episode. My special guest today is Danny Neifret. She’s a licensed aesthetician with over 20 years of experience with natural product formulation, as well as hands on treatment with her clients. She’s also the author of The Real Learning Skin Care The Story of the Skin and the New Leg, where she’s a fresh voice and a visionary for skin health providers and enthusiasts everywhere. She’s a clean beauty advocate and a speaker who loves to bring skin health back to the Earth through stories and practicality. She practices both in Boulder and Santa Barbara, California. Thank you so much for joining us here today. Dannny, so excited to have you.
Thank you. Thanks for having me on.
Well, so I am curious, you know, we talk about what’s super outdated in the current treatment of skin care. So what are we doing wrong?
Well, this is a the answer is two parts. And so, number one, we all have been trying to clean up our ingredient lists. And this has been the clean beauty movement has been, you know, incredible over the last five, 10 years. I mean, sunscreens have come a long way. You know, consumers, after cleaning up our diets, we wanted to clean up what we were putting on our skin. So this huge movement of organics and purity has really dictated the market. And so consumers have been really demanding for more purity. And the good news is that companies have been acquiescing because money talks. Right. And so we vote with our dollars. And so that’s one part of it. You know, parabens, of course, need to be taken out. Synthetics. There’s a lot of perfumes. There’s there’s once you really start reading the list of what is in a skincare product, your eyes will just pop out, you know? And so there is that part of this of to answer that question is No. One purity. And now what I’m doing with my skin care line is moving beyond purity, beyond that first level of like, OK, let’s make sure this is at least natural, you know, before we put it on our skin because it will get absorbed into our bloodstream. The second aspect of this is that the approach of the medical and clinical industry is all wrong. I have to just say it like that and lay it out because it’s all trauma based. So in the 1930s, it was basically discovered that if the entire epidermis of somebody’s skin was removed, that the dermal layer, that deeper layer underneath it, it has the power to replace it. And so we’ve been continuing off of that old model ever since. And it’s this old outdated philosophy that’s you harm to heal and that’s what’s outdated. So we can’t and what I have learned from first hand hands down from watching and looking and carefully assessing everybody’s skin over the years, all different walks of life, all different colors, all economic brackets, is that these procedures actually take a toll on our skin long term. So when we’re harming our skin and harming our skin and putting this extra workload on our dermal layer, the dermal layer, our dermal layer thins at a faster rate. So we get this like new burst of skin cells from this, you know, chemical peel, a micro dermabrasion, a lasering, anything that’s trauma based, which is pretty much the whole anti aging and acne and correctives skin niche. It it it diminishes our skin health over time. Our skin jumps up, makes new skin cells. But after that has faded and the inflammation goes away, our skin is in worse shape than where we started. So. So to answer your question, that’s what’s outdated. Our whole approach of harming to heal has it’s airtight for me based on what I’ve seen, that it does not work. All of these procedures are not creating healthier skin. It’s just not.
So what are you seeing clinically to show, wow, this actually makes somebody worse?
Well, it’s like the well, number one, everybody, the people who participate in this and how and over the years is the skin loses its luster. It loses its vitality. All of these procedures are incredibly dehydrating so that in and of itself decreases skin. Health and skin literally starts to age faster. It’s thinner. Some skin gets like this translucent, glassy look because that layer underneath has just been worked to death. Different skin types manage this trauma differently than others. Some skin types might not show these effects, you know, still a lot further, whereas sensitive skin to skin types, it’s more obvious right away. And there’s a whole throwing out of balance of the skin. The skin can get blood gets blotchy, it gets congested. That’s one of the main things. I mean, Americans were obsessed with cleaning out our pores. And what’s so tragic is the more that we conventionally try to clean out our pores, the more congested they become with with the estrangements and the dehydration and all of the stress that our skin is enduring with this. It’s poor minimizing treatments, these clay treatments, all of these all of these things. They are actually contributing to the faster congestion of our skin.
OK, so when you’re looking at, for example, salicylic acid, I’m assuming that you’re talking more about salicylic acid and drying components as well. It was kind of mixed in there, right?
Well, it’s mixed. I mean, there’s two aims within the correctives skin industry, and one is all about aging and sun damage. And then the other one is all about clearing acne. And there is some overlap. And it is true acne. The the strategy when clearing acne conventionally has to do with astringency like salicylic acid, acid, benzoyl peroxide, oil free moisturizers, and then antiaging, you’ll get more into glycolic acid, lactic acid, although you can use that on acne skin as well. And in trauma base trauma to to heal aging skin. There is less of a of a less. When you’re dealing with anti aging, it’s less about drying out. It’s true.
OK, I gotcha. OK, so I just I think I was I was hearing kind of both, so I wanted to clarify as what was what so I could understand. OK, so what do you think is better to treat the skin a better approach for that?
Yeah, well, and this is something that I’ve spent the last 15 years streamlining. A doctor about 15 years ago invented something called dermal nutrients and discovered and patented it. And that’s one of the reasons I think it’s so widely undiscovered. And why not used as much. But it’s the bioavailable form of vitamin A, and this is the direct form that the skin can absorb and metabolize and turn into new skin cells immediately without the added inflammation and the sun sensitizing effects that a normal retinol cream has like a retinal cream is pretty much outdated at this point in my book because it sits superficially on the skin. Not very much of it is absorbed and causes a ton of inflammation. But if you take that form of vitamin A and aldehyde that’s bioavailable, something that you’re our dermal layer recognizes and gets excited about and can translate into new skin cells immediately, that’s when that’s the game changer. And these this ingredient has a liposomal delivery system so that it drops all the way through our epidermal layer and is released into that dermal layer where our skin can literally start making new skin cells like in this really incredible way, as if we’re traumatizing it. But we’re not. We’re feeding it instead. So it’s a whole different way and a place to get new skin cells. And so that’s one of the things that’s the main thing that we can do. But it’s also about I have these what I call the four fundamentals of skin care. And it’s the four basic human rights that everybody’s skin loves and needs. And that first one is the dermal nutrients and the second one is water. Like everybody’s skin is so hungry and so dang thirsty that there is a strategy and a way to bring water into our skin. And so that’s the other thing that’s wildly worth pursuing. I mean, skin that’s dehydrated can go nowhere, never. And so raising water levels, feeding our skin.
And then there’s this drinking water or, you know, topically, topically talk.
What do you think are your spirits or how it’s a hydrate as hydrating mist and a substance that loves water, which is light, which is hydrophilic. So an Alvera gel or a hyaluronic that is placed strategically underneath, oh, an oil rich moisturizer. And the third aspect is barrier restoration, which is giving our skin this. It’s supporting our natural acid mantle and giving our skin so that that water is trapped in. I mean, we can apply water to our skin all day in the most expensive hyaluronic acid serum’s ever. But if there is not a layer of oil over it, it’s evaporating within five or 10 minutes, probably three minutes in Boulder. Yes. Yeah, yeah. So, I mean, this idea of giving our skin oil, not withholding oil because, you know, people are so afraid of clogging their pores that, you know, so many people, like won’t use a heavy moisturizer and that’s complete. SAVATAGE It’s so important that our skin gets gets oil that’s important for internally that we get oil. And it’s important topically that our skin has oil to trap that water in. And then the fourth aspect to my methodology is allowing for release. So when our skin. Is so dehydrated and stressed out and thrown out of balance, all the congestion just starts building up underneath our skin and it’s suppressed and it’s in the static phase. But when you reverse all of this with hydration, dermal nutrients and getting the skin soft and permeable again, what happens is this migration of blackheads, Milia, all the stuff that our skin couldn’t release previously migrates towards the top and it it can spontaneously release. And that’s all I do in my deep cleansing sessions. I only offer one service and that’s the cleaning of skin, because as it heals in this really, really profound way, it’s this releasing and undoing of all of the stuff that’s backlogged. And then eventually my clients need me less than once a year because once we detox somebody’s skin, it’s permanent. And then it’s just about maintaining that the skin is in this state of self cleansing where it doesn’t get congested because it’s hydrated, it’s fed the barriers restored. And there we have like true corrective functional medicine, skin care that works. And it’s done without chemicals and without trauma.
So, yeah, I, I like this. So let me just give you where I am in the skin care regime and I and I didn’t know anything about skin care. And so I think that I’m probably on I used to be on the level as a lot of the folks out there. So I want to like take it back just a couple of steps. Yeah. So No. One, I did not realize how profound hyaluronic acid is with utilizing like a spritzer gel, especially in Colorado. Like it was insane to see that hydration. I know. I discovery. Yeah. I also did not realize that you should do multiple layers on your skin that a moisturizer wasn’t enough. And so I learned that a while ago from how Asian culture actually does skin care. That was totally different than what we do, which is like a really exactly what you’re talking about, something very stringent, stringent. In fact, they don’t even wash their face in the morning just to keep the natural oils. I think very much talking about wakeley. Exactly. So when I think I think that this is going to be a question as we’re talking, we talked a little bit about a serum, which was the vitamin A, we have talked a little bit about something to go in between the layers and we’ve talked a little bit about an oil moisturizer to go on top. But what so what does a skin care regimen that’s good look like with all the layers?
Yeah, well, the first step, you nailed it. And you’re Anne-Marie, you’re like ahead of the game. A lot of people don’t understand that. We have it’s the right combination of oil and water that creates moist skin. And so peanut butter and jelly, it’s like they go together. So if you can apply a moisturizer all day, but your skin is still dehydrated, you know, because you’ve only given it oil. And if you give your skin water, but without that oil barrier, well, if the water evaporates, so you’re nowhere, they go together. So the first step is minimal cleansing like the Asian culture. Absolutely. And it’s a European thing as well. Minimal cleansing is really the way to go, never using a cleanser in the morning, only using a gentle cleanser and only using a gentle cleanser. If you have makeup or sunscreen on, I mean, water, steam, optional washcloth, if you have no makeup or sunscreen on, perfect. So minimal cleansing using a hydrating mist. And the best would be spring water. It doesn’t have to be anything fancy, but no more toners, toners or out witch hazel lavender. Essential oils are very almost all essential oils are too astringent to use on our face. So you’re better off with a natural spring water than some special fancy toner for your skin. And then the next layer would be an Oliveira gel. I always say that this is a poor girl’s hyaluronic acid. It doesn’t have the power that Hyaluronic has, but it has that that love for water. So what I say, it creates like a waterproof cloud, aloe vera gel. And of course, don’t get this in your skin. I’ll get this in your supplement aisle, because skin products almost always have weird chemicals in it where if you go to the supplement aisle and get a jar bottle of aloe vera gel, it’s going to be really pure. So you want food grade and it’s pennies. So that would be the next layer and then it would be a moisturizer and something that has cold pressed oils in it. Coconut oil, even olive oil, avocado oil. You know, something that that is oil free moisturizer should be like banned from the market in my theory. Right, right. Right. Exactly. Like in the trash. But something is just like loose. That oil phobia and try and trap that water in your skin, for heaven’s sake, and so that would be the basic sequence of how to how to layer. And then exfoliation is something that should only happened once or twice a month. People are exfoliating every day, every night, every week with all of these astringency and and glycolic acid and all of this. And even alpha hydroxy acids know in my routine there’s an enzyme pack that’s really creamy. You put it on for 30 minutes, up to two hours, and you get your perfect exfoliation, but without dehydrating our skin. So minimal exfoliation, enzyme based and then honestly staying away from mask’s, everything that dries on your skin like a clay mask, any mask, it’s going towards dehydration, like move away. We only want goopy things on our skin to support that that moyet that moist permeability that we want to regain. So claim ask throughout all of those poor stripping masks out. I mean, you can you can strip those strip those blackheads out. But if you don’t change what’s actually happening in your skin, you have to you’re just going in circles. You’re doing it again and again and again and again, and you’re just chasing your tail.
So how many layers do you actually do on your skin?
Three. Well, four. If you count my sunscreen, I do have a new moisturizer coming out that has a little bit of a sunscreen in it, but it would be four and it would be the Rosmus, the olive, the the I use a special hydrating dermal nutrient serum. So that would all go together. Food and water or just the aloe as the water and then a moisturizer and then a sunscreen.
OK, got it. And then at night you can wash your face in the morning you don’t, but at night you’ll wash your face if you wore makeup. And then is your bedtime routine different.
I, I usually get more generous with my products at night, more and moisturizer and more serum. But, but with my system it’s the same every morning and it’s the same every night. You do have an option to add a vitamin C powder. If anybody’s ever going to do anything extra with their skin, always do it at night. Don’t exfoliate in the morning. Don’t do the extra vitamin C or the extra dermal nutrients at night. Don’t do that in the morning, right? Exactly. Don’t do it in the morning. You always save your extras for evening time. So that would be the difference. And of course, no sunscreen.
So do you think that people can over vitamin C their face?
I do. And I’ve seen it happen.
I know, yeah. Every night, vitamin C, every night that looks dry and absolute and a lot of redness. OK, so can you talk about that a little bit.
Yeah, well vitamin C is an incredible antioxidant and it’s so, you know, so useful for free radicals, scavenging evening skin tone, helping to fight, you know, this the being alive. Right, being exposed. But too much of a good thing of anything is not good. And so you just never my rule of thumb is that we just never argue with our skin ever. And we listen and we pay attention. So if our skin gets irritated by something back off, like no questions asked, just obey your skin. Don’t keep trying to, like, force, you know, force something on your skin, especially as it’s like our skin doesn’t have words, it just has color and sensation to communicate to us. And so really paying attention and and obeying and, you know, really learning to be your skin best friend instead of it’s like authoritarian master that says you will eat this, you will do this. You are going to look a certain way.
Totally. And what I love about Colorado specifically, and you can speak to this, you know, because you practice in Boulder, I love the beauty here is almost no makeup. You can do makeup and maybe some chapstick or a little bit of lipstick, but like, that’s totally normal and like how people are judge it or how people judge themselves or whatever it is, how their skin looks, how healthy it is. And that’s such a priority for people to not over put on products. Have you seen that trend kind of start across the board?
Well, well, I mean, holistic and functional medicine and health is like here to stay. Like we’re all obsessed about it these days. And beauty is health like it’s the same thing. And of course, there’s little micro groups of people that, you know, express beauty one way or another. And in Boulder, it’s all very practical, like we are outdoor women. You know, I myself, river guided for ten years in Mexico. And like, you know, it’s all about what’s practical. And that’s why my skin care line is so simple. There’s only seven products in the whole line, and you’re only going to use one of the three serums that I made. So but I love that about Colorado very much. And the thing that we have to watch in that is that because we’re not wearing a lot of makeup, we really have to pay attention to sunscreen. And we are at high altitude here. And everybody here is such an outdoor person that we really have to watch our sun exposure. That would be the one drawback, like those women, L.A., where a lot of makeup and, you know, they get they get some protection from the sun in that way. And out here, we need to, you know, do extra sunscreen, clean sunscreen.
Totally. Yeah. So is there anything that I didn’t ask that you feel like is really important to add? I feel like we covered a lot of things.
Yeah, I do. I guess I want to say it’s just been hypnotized by the skin industry and specifically the corrective skin industry that if we want to anti age or that we want to clear acne, there’s only been essentially one choice, and that’s to get on antibiotics, to go through lasers to, you know, get on all the astringency, to do all these chemical peels and micro dermabrasion. And I’m just kind of over here waving my hands saying, hey, hey, like I’ve scouted a new route, it’s time tested, I’ve streamlined it, and there is an alternative route and it works.
Awesome. So where can people find you if they want to get in touch with you?
Yes, my website skin harmonics. And if you type in backslash podcast, I made a special landing page just for your listeners. You would just fill in the information. I’m trying to gather email addresses, but what she’ll get follow the sequence, but you’ll get a coupon. You’ll get a really awesome 20 percent off coupon, anything you order off my website. And I also put together a PDF of the 10 things that our skin wishes we would stop doing to it. So it’s kind of surprising and fun to read through those 10 things. And that that’s in that landing page as well.
Awesome. Thank you so much for coming on. It was just awesome to have you. I like to talk about skin care a lot, so I just think it’s a really fun topic. Something things that we take for granted maybe we get used to do in a certain way. We get clear skin. We don’t think about it anymore. And then we have so many people struggling. But I definitely have.
I made that from the layered approach that definitely and preserving our skin, not traumatizing it, feeding it and helping our skin look better, like I want to look good when I’m 80. I don’t know about you. I mean, I’m still going to need my skin when I’m 90. And if we wear it out too soon, it you know, I just know that we can do better. I know we can.
Totally, totally. Well, everybody, thank you so much for listening. We’re so grateful to have you share this with us today. If you like what we’re doing, please comment below. Say hello. Tell us what you want to hear more of. Thank you. Bye.