Thursday, October 19, 2017


The NY Times article on the need for using the right moisturizer is timely with the onset of autumn when the skin needs more protection. With the cool air of fall upon most of us and winter’s cold, dry winds approaching, it’s time to get serious about caring for the stratum corneum, the outermost layer of skin, the body’s largest organ.
With  64 percent water content in the skin makes it an essential ingredient. If the stratum corneum gets too dry, the skin can become itchy, scaly, inflamed, leathery and unattractive. For most people, whether their skin is dry or oily and especially if they live in a cold, dry or windy climate, routine use of a moisturizer can protect the skin’s water supply.
But faced with the dizzying array of choices on store shelves, how is the consumer to select a moisturizer likely to be effective and unlikely to cause an unwanted reaction? Do you make a selection based on brand name, price, a doctor’s or friend’s advice?
Due to overwhelming advertised claims, most of the cosmetic products are at best loosely regulated, dependent entirely on the integrity of manufacturers to market a safe, effective product and on consumers to holler loudly when a product is neither.
Triggering of allergy resulting in itchy, red, inflamed skin is one prime concern.
Experts recently evaluated 174 best-selling moisturizers across a price range of 10 cents an ounce to $9.51 an ounce, with special attention to the presence of allergenic ingredients.
Body lotions were by far the most popular, accounting for 59 percent of moisturizers sold, followed by creams at 13 percent, oils at 12 percent, butters at 8 percent and ointments at 2 percent. Based on the North American group’s list, the team found that only 12 percent of the best-selling moisturizers were free of allergens. The three most common allergens were fragrances, parabens and tocopherol.
Even among products labeled “fragrance-free,” 45 percent had at least one fragrance-related ingredient, the team reported.  It was found that if a company uses an ingredient that is both a preservative and a fragrance, it can still claim the product to be “fragrance-free” if preservation is the ingredient’s primary purpose.
Also, a product labeled “fragrance-free” or “unscented” could contain a masking agent (a fragrance that counters a chemical odor), a cross-reactive chemical that acts like a fragrance, or a botanical ingredient that is an allergen. The experts feel that it’s hard for dermatologists to guide patients to products that are truly fragrance-free.” Among the 15 products claiming to be hypoallergenic, 83 percent had at least one ingredient on the allergen list, and 24 products contained five or more such ingredients
An initial mild allergic reaction of itching and redness can progress to a profound reaction of stinging, burning, swelling and pain, Dr. Silverberg said. “With each exposure, the reaction gets stronger,” he said. Thus, the wise consumer with an allergic tendency might consider switching periodically to a different product and should certainly stop using any moisturizer that seems to be setting off an untoward reaction.
The American Academy of Dermatology suggests that in choosing a moisturizer, consumers wishing to avoid common allergic sensitizers pick one that is free of additives, fragrances and perfumes, though the new study showed this is clearly a challenge, even for knowledgeable physicians.
Cost is no guarantee of safety or effectiveness, the new study showed. Products labeled “dermatologist-recommended” are more expensive, but Dr. Xu said “the label doesn’t mean anything – is it 100 dermatologists, 10 dermatologists or one dermatologist?” The most expensive moisturizer his team analyzed contained the most allergens – a total of eight on the North American group’s list.
Health-conscious consumers sometimes turn to products labeled “organic” or “all-natural” for moisturizing in hopes of avoiding synthetic chemicals. But these “are not necessarily unlikely to cause a reaction and may not be very effective,” Dr. Xu said.
Olive oil, for example, increases water evaporation from the skin, he said, adding that the oils likely to be most protective and free of allergens are sunflower oil, coconut oil and shea butter.
However, for most people, moisturizing lotions, which contain more water than creams or ointments, are effective and least expensive. They evaporate quickly on the skin and do not leave a greasy feeling that many consumers dislike.
Nonetheless, people with very dry skin might invest in a cream or ointment, the cost of which is reduced by the need to use less of the product. Creams contain more water than ointments and offer what the team called “a middle ground” for people who dislike the greasiness of ointments. Ultimately, the team concluded, “patient adherence and willingness to use a moisturizer is more important than a specific formulation.”
Ideally, moisturizers are best applied on damp skin within minutes of bathing, after patting the skin dry, to lock in moisture. Also helpful is to bathe or shower in warm, not hot, water.

Tuesday, October 3, 2017


Writing in NY Times, Kari Molvar advises on best skin care routine.
She explains that skin-care routine has three main steps: Cleansing — Washing your face. Toning — Balancing the skin. Moisturizing — Hydrating and softening the skin.
The goal of any skin-care routine is to tune up your complexion so it’s functioning at its best, and also troubleshoot or target any areas you want to work on. “Beauty routines are an opportunity to notice changes within yourself,” says the San Francisco skin-care specialist Kristina Holey. As your skin needs shifts with age, so will your products. Still, she adds, “it’s not about creating perfection.”   Allow these three steps to become your daily ritual that fortifies your skin and grounds your day. 
The science behind skin-care products has come a long way but there’s still no such thing as an instant fix — you need time to reap the benefits, says Dr. Rachel Nazarian, a Manhattan dermatologist at Schweiger Dermatology Group. “Results are only seen through consistent use,” she explains. Generally, aim to use a product over at least six weeks, once or twice daily, to notice a difference.  
Tip: With any skin-care product, apply in order of consistency — from thinnest to thickest. For example, cleanser, toner (if you use it), serum, and then moisturizer.
Washing your face is the most basic and essential step of any routine, says the New York City dermatologist Dr. Carlos Charles. “Our skin comes in contact with environmental pollutants, dirt and other factors each day that should be gently removed.” Wash twice a day, morning and night, to avoid clogged pores, dullness and acne.
The right formula cleanses your skin without stripping essential, healthy oils. Take it easy with exfoliating scrubs (use once a week) and avoid those with crushed walnut shells or abrasive ingredients. 
This term frequently appears on product labels and is used by skin-care experts but not always defined in simple, clear language. Here’s a quick explanation: If a product claims to be non-comedogenic it means that it shouldn’t clog pores or trigger acne — either by occluding the skin, blocking glands or irritating the hair follicle. The claim is not regulated by the F.D.A., however, and many companies do their own internal tests to determine whether a product should be considered comedogenic or not. (Some common known comedogenic ingredients are coconut oil and cocoa butter.) Typically, the fewer ingredients a product has, the easier it is to determine if it will cause any reactions.  
For many, the word “toner” brings to mind stinging astringents from the ’80s. “The original was an alcohol-based product that was used to dry up oily skin and remove any leftover dirt following cleansing,” Dr. Nazarian says. Today’s formulas, however, have evolved. Think of them as supplements — these thin liquids deliver an extra shot of nutrients, helping the other products in your regimen absorb better, while still balancing your complexion. Most experts, the New York City aesthetician Jordana Mattioli says, consider toner to be optional: “It can be a good way to add in specific ingredients that you may not have in your other products or add another layer of skin-replenishment.” If you have the time and inclination, here are some hero ingredients to look for: 
Alpha and beta hydroxy acids to gently remove dead skin cells that can clog pores, improve sun-damaged skin and minimize dullness.
Hyaluronic acid to improve hydration, seal in dewiness and plump skin to subtly treat fine lines.
Rose water and green tea to calm irritation and reduce redness with an anti-inflammatory effect.
Vitamin E and C to fight daily exposure to free radicals that can age your skin.
“Toners should be done after cleansing and before putting on anything else,”Mattioli says. The traditional application method is to saturate a cotton pad and pass it over your face. But, as Mattioli points out, “You end up losing a lot of product.” 
Tip: “Applying toner with clean hands is the most efficient. Just pour a few drops in your palm, then swipe it on.” Or if you prefer, you can pull apart a cotton pad “so it’s not so thick before putting toner on it,” Mattioli advises. Most formulas can be used morning and night, but you might want to use those with exfoliating acids only at night or every other day.  


These are powerful skin allies. Filled with concentrated doses of active ingredients, these elixirs can mitigate a number of issues, from dark spots to wrinkles. “Even if you don’t have any specific issues, everyone still needs a general antioxidant serum in the morning to protect from daily aggressors. While there are “limitless options” for ingredients, Dr. Nazarian singles out her hardworking favorites: To handle specific issues, look for these products:  
Hyaluronic acid to seal in hydration and strengthen the barrier function (the top layer of your skin) to prevent moisture loss.
Vitamin C to help brighten dull skin and decrease dark spots with continued use.
Retinol, vitamin B3, peptides to stimulate the production of collagen and elastin, proteins in the body that help prevent lines and skin sagging. 
Colloidal sulfur, niacinamide to calm redness and irritation by decreasing inflammation, and improve acne with its antimicrobial effects.
If you have multiple concerns, you might want to use multiple formulas. “I recommend treating different areas with different products,” Mattioli says. “Maybe you’ll use a vitamin C serum all over but then dab on [another] for hyperpigmentation on just a few spots.” Just run any combination by your dermatologist to avoid any potential reactions. 
To save time, don’t try mixing a serum into your moisturizer. This “lessens the ability of the serum to absorb effectively,” Dr. Nazarian says. “Products should be applied one by one.” 
Not all serums are applied with the same frequency. “This varies with the ingredients,” Dr. Nazarian says. “I prefer antioxidants in the morning because they give you additional protection from the environment, and most of us don’t use enough sunscreen as is,” Mattioli says. Yet certain ingredients are best when slathered on at night. For example: “Retinols are not sun-stable and will degrade if applied in daytime,” Dr. Nazarian explains. Bottom line: Read the label instructions carefully.
The most basic function of a moisturizer is to hydrate and soften the skin. “Essentially, moisturizers assist in preventing water loss through the outer layers of skin,” Dr. Charles explains. “They can also complement the naturally found protective oils and other building blocks within the skin, such as ceramides.” This is one product that doctors recommend using year-round, for all skin types. “Skin naturally loses the ability to retain moisture as we age,” Dr. Nazarian insists, “and daily activities, such as washing, can strip natural hydrators from the surface.”
Creams you apply in the morning are equipped to protect your skin from the environmental aggressors you’ll face when you leave the house—many contain antioxidants to minimize pollution-based free radicals and sunscreen to shield you from ultraviolet radiation. They typically have a lightweight consistency. Night creams, on the other hand, focusing on repairing any damage you might have picked up with ingredients like retinol to speed cellular turnover and counteract dark spots. These creams also replenish moisture levels, which naturally dip in the evening, with emollients that often create a rich, thick texture. 
 “The skin around the eyes is quite thin and delicate, and more likely to react to irritating ingredients than other areas,” Dr. Nazarian says. “Therefore, dermatologists typically recommend an eye cream that considers the potential sensitivity and has more tolerable concentrations of active ingredients.” 
For undereye bags and inflammation, caffeine, peptides and hyaluronic acid can be soothing, Mattioli says. “Dark circles can be due to visible veins or actual discoloration common in darker skin tones,” she says. “Look for brightening ingredients like vitamin C, kojic acid and niacinamide.” Insider tip: Steer clear of strong retinols (which can sting and create redness) and fragrance, to avoid any eye irritation.
Protect With Sunscreen
All of the experts we consulted unanimously agreed on one thing: that sunscreen is, hands down, the most crucial skin-care product. It’s “of utmost importance as part of your year-round regimen,” Dr. Charles points out. “Daily and consistent sunscreen use helps to prevent the development of fine lines and wrinkles, textural imperfections, and changes in the appearance of pores over time. More importantly, daily sunscreen use can help to prevent the formation of certain skin cancers.” To make it easy to remember, experts recommend using a daily moisturizer with a built-in broad spectrum SPF of at least 30.

Monday, October 2, 2017


While following the latest efforts to prevent aging among humans, Herbally Radiant came across a very good piece in BBC's Health Edition by Peter Allison.

Describing the history of anti-aging efforts by scientists and physicians since late 19th century, Peter explains how life expectancy in US has gone up from 40 in 1850 to 78 now.  However, the efforts are on to raise this level of lifespan.

There are some possible pharmaceutical treatments that may not only protect against aging, but actually reverse the effects of aging itself. But despite massive advances in health science, there is still a limit to how long the human body can go on.

Much of the current medical research is not about living longer, but rather living healthier for longer, and delaying infirmity. One should remember that rejuvenation treatments may address the physical aspects of aging, but they do not address the mental and neurological elements, such as Alzheimer’s and dementia. That being said, the number of reported cases of dementia is reducing. “One theory is that just as we keep our bodies active our bodies tend to decline slower, so there is an argument that as we keep our mental activities higher maybe we ward off dementia,” says Harper.

Another aspect to us living longer and healthier lives is that our chronological age becomes increasingly meaningless when defining our lives. There are now 40-year-old women who are giving birth for the first time, as well as other 40-year-old women who are becoming grandmothers. Despite their shared age, their lives have little in common.

I think part of being human is that we have a finite life and that we pace our lives, as has been suggested by Harper. “It is far better to put all our resources into having everyone living long and healthy lifespans, rather than having a few people to live into the far future.”

The point of interest for the R&D team of Herbally Radiant is that living a healthy life is more important than just prolonging a life that is no longer in good shape. The rejuvenating of skin is quite crucial from this point. No chemicals experimented by scientists on the skin have so far have turned old aging skin into a fresh one. These have not removed the wrinkles, lines and spots which appear with the aging process. 

However, it goes to the credit of those experts who experimented with the natural organic elements to come up with amazing formulations that are able to delay aging signs on the skin. Herbally Radiant has been using these formulations in its powerful anti-aging products that are chemical-free and contain the best natural ingredients that are most skin-friendly and create a bright skin, adding to the facial beauty.  

Tuesday, September 19, 2017


Increasing number of experts cosmetologists are feeling the need for the standardized process before a beauty and skin care product could be labeled as 'natural' or 'organic'.  In blogs and seminars on what constitutes 'natural' and 'organic' is being debated extensively because the consumers are becoming aware of the hazards of chemical and synthetic ingredients that are packed in most of the cosmetic and beauty care products.

the view being expressed widely is that the cosmetic regulations in the US are overly nuanced and too convoluted. Trends and marketing strategies have collided in recent years to make 'natural' and 'organic' beauty product labeling delightfully problematic.

The industry experts have emphasized that there has been a dilution of the meaning of 'natural' and 'organic' and somewhere along the way, the truly authentic, natural brands are paying up.

Herbally Radiant has learnt from its customers that the consumers, in general, would very much welcome to find the exact sequential in explaining truly clean, green, natural organic beauty product.


Monday, September 18, 2017


More and more scientists are recognizing the fact that plants have amazing effect on human health. Herbally Radiant has been promoting this awareness with the help of its powerful formulations to prevent premature aging signs and to brighten up skin in the healthiest natural manner.
The investigative report in BBC magazine highlights how from being natural fire-fighters to potential famine-thwarters, there are four incredible ways that plants could revolutionise our world.
Cross-breeding super plants
When we eat vegetables on our dinner plates, what we’re looking at were once ordinary crops that were grown on a farm. But those farm-grown crops had relatives out in the wild - that were “to our food plants what wolves are to dogs”.But those roguish cousins living in the wild – far away from domesticating farms – have developed resilience to pests, diseases, soil salinity and climate change.
That’s why plant breeders are working to crossbreed these wild crops with our domestic crops to make them just as hardy as their cousins – while still offering us the benefits that tamed plants offer, such as a high yield. 

Cross-breeding wild vegetables with their cultivated counterparts on the farm could create a hybrid super-veggie resilient to pests and disease (Credit: LM Salazar / Crop Trust)
It’s a truly worldwide plan; the countries that have the highest number of wild plant cousins are Brazil, China, and India, while the countries with the highest concentration of them are Azerbaijan, Portugal and Greece. The benefits that this cross-breeding programme could have in developing countries in particular could be indispensable as world population growth reaches over nine billion.
Using plants as medicine
This isn’t anything new – the use of plants is medicine has been known since time immemorial. But are we being too slow to register new uses?
Over 28,000 plant species are currently recorded as being of medicinal use, but fewer than 16% of them are cited in a medicinal regulatory publication. When the World Health Organization last estimated the plant-based medicinal industry’s worth in 2012, it totalled a mind-boggling $83bn (£62bn).
The industry is growing increasingly popular; in Germany, around 90% of the population use herbal medicines that are derived from plants such as foxglove and garlic. But one major problem, of course, is that health regulators are keen to stop the proliferation of unsafe or phony products entering the market; a lazy approach to authentication has already meant that herb names have been confused with those with similar sounding names and patients have ended up ingesting a wildly inappropriate (and potentially lethal) drug.
China is one country trying to stop this. In December 2016, Chinese government officials announced their aim to integrate more traditional Chinese medicine into their healthcare system by 2020, as well as presenting detailed illustrations and descriptions of the source plants to stop any future confusion happening.

If we’re to utilise plants to their full life-saving potential,the researchers make urgent recommendations: sourcing plants from sustainable resources, cultivating them, introducing reliable traceability procedures and secure more effective quality control.
Bananas on steroids
Well, not quite bananas. The enset is a member of the banana family that has been cultivated in Ethiopia for tens of thousands of years – the Ethiopians in fact have over 200 names for it – and it has several different uses. As well as being a staple crop in Africa it can make rope, medicine, shelter, animal feed and clothes, not to mention also providing an ideal microclimate for coffee plants to flourish in. It withstands drought, heavy rain and flooding. Basically – is there anything that this ‘false banana’ can’t do?

But first, they’re going to have to figure out how to gather its seeds – at the moment, farmers take cuttings from the plants to grow more of them, meaning no one actually knows how enset is pollinated. However, once they work out this super banana’s secrets, there’s no telling the good it could do.
Fire-fighting plants
Most people throw burger patties or hot dogs onto a flaming barbecue – Kew Gardens in England instead decided to throw some plants on it.
The flammability of plants is seriously important when you think about wildfires and the devastation that they cause economically, socially and environmentally. It can happen because plant diversity is poor, and also because non-native plants simply haven’t adapted in time to the climate of their new home. But fire is a normal, important process in some ecosystems.

Plants that are likely to tolerate future increases in the frequency of fires are those with a thicker bark, a quick ability to resprout and the presence of serotinous cones; just like a phoenix from the ashes, these cones house seeds which are released into the air if a fire burns away the serotinous resin protecting it, ensuring the survival of the species elsewhere.

Herbally Radiant has been promoting the awareness about the amazing benefits of plants to our health, and especially to our skin. The powerful formulations developed by the R&D team of Herbally Radiant have proven very popular for preventing premature aging signs, rejuvenating cells and maintaining the skin in its best natural shining shape. 

Monday, September 11, 2017


Washington Post carries a thought provoking article on the increasing inroads being made by tech giants like Google, Amazon, Facebook, Apple and others. 
The extracts of the article : Today’s ascendant monopolies aspire to encompass all of existence. Google derives from googol, a number (1 followed by 100 zeros) that mathematicians use as shorthand for unimaginably large quantities. Larry Page and Sergey Brin founded Google with the mission of organizing all knowledge, but that proved too narrow. They now aim to build driverless cars, manufacture phones and conquer death. Amazon, which once called itself “the everything store,” now produces television shows, owns Whole Foods and powers the cloud. The architect of this firm, Jeff Bezos, even owns this newspaper.
Along with Facebook, Microsoft and Apple, these companies are in a race to become our “personal assistant.” They want to wake us in the morning, have their artificial intelligence software guide us through our days and never quite leave our sides. They aspire to become the repository for precious and private items, our calendars and contacts, our photos and documents. They intend for us to turn unthinkingly to them for information and entertainment while they catalogue our intentions and aversions. Google Glass and the Apple Watch prefigure the day when these companies implant their artificial intelligence in our bodies. Perhaps in the future, we can attach a little version of Google that you just plug into your brain.
More than any previous coterie of corporations, the tech monopolies aspire to mold humanity into their desired image of it. They think they have the opportunity to complete the long merger between man and machine — to redirect the trajectory of human evolution. How do I know this? In annual addresses and town hall meetings, the founding fathers of these companies often make big, bold pronouncements about human nature — a view that they intend for the rest of us to adhere to, and if humans function like computers, why not hasten the day we become fully cyborg?
To take another grand theory, Facebook chief Mark Zuckerberg has exclaimed his desire to liberate humanity from phoniness, to end the dishonesty of secrets. “The days of you having a different image for your work friends or co-workers and for the other people you know are probably coming to an end pretty quickly,” he has said. “Having two identities for yourself is an example of a lack of integrity.” Of course, that’s both an expression of idealism and an elaborate justification for Facebook’s business model.
Herbally Radiant finds these technology initiatives quite relevant to the evolving lifestyle in which beauty factor will continue to dominate.  Happily, it is beyond the reach of hi-tech so far.