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Q – I read a comment on a review of your CARAMEL TAN that the alternative you use contains sugar and causes similar free radical damage to an ingredient called DHA in regular self tanners. I am just wondering if you have researched this as I am looking for a safe alternative. Thanks!

I received this question on INSTAGRAM and thought I would answer it in a blog. I receive this question more often now and it is worth answering in detail. The active tanning ingredient in CARAMEL TAN is a natural fruit sugar sourced from a raspberry. I encourage all my clients to do their own research and if a line does not disclose the full list of ingredients, whatever claims they make should not matter. You deserve to know what you are putting on your skin. It is being absorbed into the body so it is smart to want to do your research. Some online websites and forums have raised concerns about this alternative being just as harmful as the original active tanning agent, DHA (Dihydoxyacetone). So I want to share my own personal experience and some online references.

DHA side effects

I have spent a lot of time working with DHA, first in the fitness industry, and then in the spa industry.

1. What stands out the most in my memory about DHA is the smell. I do not care for the DHA smell. It is a very distinct odour and it gets stronger the longer it is on the skin. Some have said it smells like B.O. Others say it is more of a sweet, yeasty smell. It does not appeal to me and I know if I can smell it on myself throughout the day, it is even stronger to others around me. Some companies will use chemical fragrance to mask the smell but I think it just makes it worse. The active ingredient in CARAMEL TAN has absolutely no smell.

2. I would get quite itchy after using a product with DHA. It was worse if it was sprayed on me as a tan, maybe because there was more DHA in the spray tan. I remember this annoyed me because I was worried I was scratching the tan right off, and often I was. I do not experience any kind of irritation or itchiness with CARAMEL TAN like I did with DHA-based products, which was my reason for creating this product. Although I do not feel like I am highly sensitive, my body is sensitive to fragrances and synthetic chemicals, especially when they are applied all over me.

3. When the DHA is wearing off, one is often left with streaking on the skin, especially if you are fair. I also noticed that my skin would be very tight and dry. I am not sure if this was due to an alcohol added to the solution or the DHA itself. I do not find this with CARAMEL TAN, just the opposite. The DHA was a liquid with the consistency of water or alcohol. The active ingredient in CARAMEL TAN is like castor oil or agave nectar. It is a little sticky on its own but when added to a body cream it creates a more intense hydration. I especially appreciate this in the Canadian winter months.

4. With the DHA formulas it would require a lot of massaging of the product into skin to make sure it evenly absorbed. Again, maybe this is just the formulas I tried but this is what I remember. With CARAMEL TAN very minimal time is required in application and absolutely no streaking whatsover as it wears off. As far as colour, the DHA-based products create more of an orange tan. This may work better for some but for me it was not the colour I naturally tan.

Now some have had concerns that the active ingredient I use increases free radicals. If you would like to stay away from any type of faux tanner, I would recommend you try CUSTOM CACAO TAN which naturally bronzes the skin:

I recommend you watch the link below to learn about oxidation and free radicals:

I hope this info helps! Keep in mind, the antioxidant industry is a billion dollar industry. I am aware of this because I am 100% involved in it, but I am also a truth seeker.

Here are a few more amazing makeup application videos I came across over the holidays. I like to concentrate on the makeup placement for the mature client because it will essentially work for all ages.
I am presently doing online consultations with a few new clients and a few clients who just want a simple and awake look as they have more hectic schedules this year. One thing I want to make clear is that the placement of your brightening and contouring, as well as where you add a few pops of colour is just as important as the quality and purity of the makeup itself. Good brushes make a world of difference when it comes to detailing around the eyes. So I am going to add a few makeover videos below. Some are more simple, some more made over, but I think you will get something helpful out of each one:

I cannot stress enough the benefits of a good facial massage after waking up and at end of the day. You can use my RASPBERRY ELIXIR or your favorite plant based oil. Here is a good video on facial massage instruction:

If you did not catch my FAVORITE MAKEUP VIDEOS part 1 here is the link:

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