When it comes to skin care, there are a lot of myths and misconceptions out there. Sometimes these myths are perpetuated because of ignorance, or other times to sell a faulty product. Nearly everyone has a skin care routine, so it's easy to fall for one of those convincing myths now and again.

Feb 15, 2022 4:30:32 PM / by The Institute of Skin Science

Common Skin Care Myths When it comes to skin care, there are a lot of myths and misconceptions out there. Sometimes these myths are perpetuated because of ignorance, or other times to sell a faulty product. Nearly everyone has a skin care routine, so it's easy to fall for one of those convincing myths now and again. We want our customers to be well informed with beautiful skin, so we have outlined some of the common mistakes people make to help you avoid them. Myth: Drying out your skin will help reduce acne breakouts. Truth: Dry skin is irritated skin, and you are promoting breakouts if you dry out your skin regularly. As soon as you wash off your cleanser or apply your treatment serums, you should be applying a moisturizer appropriate for your skin type. Even those with oily skin should be using a light moisturizer after cleansing their skin. Myth: Harsh skin care products will clear up acne. Truth: Once again, you are most likely irritating your skin more than working toward a solution. A mild cleanser used twice each day with warm water is most effective. Your dermatologist or esthetician will decide if you should use a stronger product on your skin to clear up acne. Myth: Sunscreen is necessary only when you spend long hours in the sun. Truth: SPF 15 or above should be worn every day, at all times of the year, regardless of rain or shine. Most people only apply sunscreen when spending long hours in the sun but most UV damage is caused by day-to-day exposure, such as driving to and from work, walking to the mailbox, and running our daily errands. Wearing sunscreen daily, regardless of activity is crucial to preserving healthy, beautiful skin. Even while indoors, we are still exposed to the sun’s rays. If your houseplants can survive on the little sunlight that is being let into your home, those rays are also affecting your skin. Myth: Tanning helps to reduce acne. Truth: While it may seem that it is reducing acne, it is only masking the appearance and is actually creating more damage in the skin. It temporarily dries out the skin, making it appear less oily and inflamed. However, to compensate for the lack of oils, the skin will begin to overproduce oil exacerbating the problem and leading to more breakouts. UV damage leads to more inflammation in the skin, damages collagen and elastin, increases your risk of skin cancer, and more. Myth: My skin is only affected by my hygiene and hormones. Truth: While acne and breakouts can be a result of a variety of factors, including imbalanced hormones and genetics, your breakout could actually be exacerbated by your diet. The healthier your eating habits are, the less likely you are to have a breakout. Fuel your body with vitamins A and E in the form of leafy vegetables, nuts, and foods high in good amino acids to help your body reflect its healthiness on the outside. Myth: You can never get too much exfoliation. Truth: Many people feel that the smoother their skin feels, the healthier it is and the less likely it is to have a breakout. While exfoliation is a great practice that will remove dead skin cells and help your skin look radiant, too much exfoliation (as well as too vigorous scrubbing) will result in the loss of the protective layer over your skin that keeps bacteria out. Good exfoliation practices should be performed 2-3 times a week at the most.

If you have any questions and would like to speak to one of our friendly Master Aestheticians in your area, please email

Written by The Institute of Skin Science

Mistakes You Should Stop Making On Your Skin
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GlyMed's Director of Education, Sarah Robbins, interview with Jean McKoy for the Skin Deep podcast on pigmentation in Fitzpatricks IV, V, and VI. Jean McKoy is a Licensed Master Esthetician located in Sacramento, California, and has been an account with GlyMed Plus for more than eight years.

Feb 2, 2022 2:14:01 PM / by The Institute of Skin Science

Interview with Former UAC Member Jean McKoy

GlyMed's Director of Education, Sarah Robbins, interviewed Jean McKoy for the Skin-Deep podcast and had an excellent discussion on Fitzpatricks IV, V, and VI. If you'd like to listen to the full podcast, click here or search for Skin Deep by GlyMed Plus on any podcast network.

Jean McKoy is a Licensed Master Esthetician located in Sacramento, California, and has been an account with GlyMed Plus for more than eight years. GlyMed is also privileged to have her be a part of our Unity Advisory Committee, which exists to help influence the direction and voice of the esthetician and shape the future of esthetics.

This text was transcribed from her interview with GlyMed. Some edits have been made for readability.

About Jean McKoy

Skin has always been a passion of mine as a little girl and through adolescence in high school. In 2008, I retired from corporate structure, went to skin school, became an esthetician, and I've been practicing since 2008. I opened my business in 2014 and wanted to specialize in clinical skincare and focus more on skin nutrition and chemical peels. While I was in school, I was introduced to GlyMed Plus. Our class was the first to utilize GlyMed Plus, and I just fell in love with it because of the active ingredients.

Fast forward from 2014 to current, I have a client base of about 3000. Every month, I see about 175 to 200 clients pre-covid.

My business primarily carries GlyMed. I use a couple of other things, but I'm really 100% GlyMed, and that's simply because of the relationship I've built over the years. There's a lot of consistency in education and knowledge within the GlyMed family. On top of the fact that the products work and are effective. And my clients love it.

Melasma and Its Triggers

Melasma is an overproduction of the melanocytes or overproduction of colour in the skin, which can come from many things. Pregnancy is one of the big ones. Certain things can trigger it, including your diet, thyroid issues, hormonal changes, pharmaceutical products, and medications, but they vary by person. Fitzpatricks IV, V, and VI typically develop some type of pigmentation while pregnant, and it usually starts at the chest line up to the neck and onto the face.

Melasma is most concentrated, usually along the jawline, the cheeks—because that's the fattiest part of our face—usually followed by the bridge of the nose. It could be on the upper and bottom lip, the chin area, but mostly the jawline is what I deal with a lot. The difference in the type of melasma depends on how deep it is. So, the darker the melasma becomes, the deeper in the epidermis.

Some medications that can trigger overproduction are blood pressure medicine, thyroid medication, and birth control pills. Those are the three main ones that I see a lot that are the root cause. You must be careful with the types of meds you're taking, but the moment you start to see a change in your skin, that's a great time to seek out an esthetician or even a dermatologist.

I remember growing up watching pregnant women in the African-American community and listening to my elders saying, "Oh, she has the mother's mask," which usually presents itself around month seven of pregnancy. When I became pregnant, I developed the mother's mask on my chest and neck. Nine times out of 10, after you deliver, it goes away, but I do have clients where it didn't completely disappear, so it's not a 100% guarantee that it will. So again, that's something to be mindful of while you're pregnant. For my pregnant clients, I place them on either Living Cell Clarifier or Derma Pigment Skin Brightener and some other products while they're pregnant.

I suffer from light pigmentation on my cheeks. It became more prominent after I did a Vitamin A peel about four years ago. I keep it at bay with Derma Pigment Skin Brightener and chemical peels. If I don't use my tyrosinase inhibitor, after about four or five days, I start to see the shadowing of it coming back in, so it is not something that will go away.

SPF and Darker Fitzpatricks

People think, especially Fitzpatrick types V and VI, that sunscreen is unnecessary. Sunscreen is for everybody, and the sun is no respecter of skin tone. The sun's rays can produce melasma if they don't protect their skin, and I often stress that to my clients, regardless of colour. We all need to wear sunscreen.

Melasma and Who It Affects

Statistically, about 10% of the male population fits the hyperpigmentation category and has some overproduction of colour. About 90% of the statistics show that women are more susceptible to overproduction of pigment in their skin.

Teenagers are not excluded from the development of melasma in the skin, and a lot of times, I find in teens that it's hereditary. It's essential to get them on a good regimen and stress the importance of protecting their skin, especially those still in school.

Body temperature, increased heart rate, and inflammation trigger pigmentation. We often hear about melasma and think of older individuals because it’s more common in ages 35 to 50, but it does show up in younger skin.

Deep Pigmentation

It's challenging to differentiate between hyperpigmentation and melasma, and I always tell clients to look for patterns. If you start to see the dots of pigmentation connecting, becoming denser in the skin, and spreading, the chances are that's melasma and not hyperpigmentation. There's a distinctive pattern with melasma.

In my consultations, I'm usually looking at the density of the melasma. If it's dense, I typically recommend consulting with their doctor before they go through the chemical peel process. I advise them to talk with their doctor about getting on hydroquinone to help with the process of prepping the skin for chemical peeling as well as the reduction or slowing down of the melanocytes. That has worked well for some of my clients who've had that higher density of pigmentation in the skin, and then I set them up with a chemical peel process. I start with gentle chemical peels to begin slowing down the production of colour in the skin and then gradually take them up each session to a different level.

Treating Pigmentation

Usually, when I'm seeing a client for the first time, I start with something superficial, just to get the skin accustomed to the acids and make sure that there's no reaction. Then I put them on a pre-treatment or home care regimen and bring them back within four to six weeks. That’s when I step it up a notch or two. Sometimes my chemical series can take four to six months because I take my time, and I want to make sure that the skin is healing well before applying another chemical peel. Don't rush it.

When you're getting into the more aggressive peels, your aftercare instructions are very important for your clients throughout the process. I don't allow my clients to perspire after an aggressive peel for three to four days; do not work out, don't sweat, and avoid the sun at any cost. Perspiration can cause bacteria on the skin and cause them to break out. On top of the chemical peel acids, now you're adding more acid from the salt to the skin, which will be an irritant, so your home care is important, but your aftercare is even more important.

Homecare is Key

I educate my clients all the time about the difference between over-the-counter products versus active ingredients, which is what I use on them and what I'm recommending for them at home; there is a huge variance between the two. I ask them not to use home care that they purchased over the counter or in a department store while using the products that I have them on. Most of them comply with that because they want to get a true result. If you're not using the correct products, I can't guarantee anything.

If you have a client that's not going to commit to home care, then it's not even a path you want to travel down performing chemical peels. It also shows that you don't want them as a client because they're not willing to trust you and the advice, you're giving them.

I have turned people away if they’re not buying products from me. I've had people say they found a product on Amazon instead, or what have you. No, no, no, no, no, I don't know what that product is. I don't know what's in that product. If you're not buying it from me, I will not peel you because it's not about the money, it's about my reputation and your results, so if you're not going to comply, I can't serve you. And it's okay to do that.

Written by The Institute of Skin Science

If you have any questions please email

Pigmentation in Skin of Colour Guest Blog
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Fulvic Acid is a powerhouse in the treatment room and in your home care. If you haven't heard the wonders of this acid yet, let this Q&A introduce you! It is anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, anti-viral, anti-inflammatory, and anti-allergenic.

Jan 5, 2022 4:32:24 PM / by The Institute of Skin Science

Fulvic Acid is a powerhouse in the treatment room and in your home care. If you haven't heard the wonders of this acid yet, let this Q&A introduce you! What is Fulvic Acid, and where does it come from? Fulvic Acid is a humic substance meaning that it is a significant component of organic matter and is released as organic matter decomposes. This new ingredient is considered one of the most chemically active compounds in soil because it contains various beneficial nutrients. It is anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, anti-viral, anti-inflammatory, and anti-allergenic. Fulvic Acid is neither an AHA nor a BHA; it is an electrolyte. Electrolytes allow our bodies to function correctly and help us generate energy. Think about when you drink a sports drink after your workout, and you feel better, right? Electrolytes do the same thing for our skin; they enhance the availability of nutrients to make them more readily absorbable. This property restores each cell to a normal chemical balance. Electrolytes also allow our skin cells to function at a higher level, just like sports drinks enable our bodies to perform at a higher level and repair damage that has taken place. What does Fulvic Acid do in skin treatment? Fulvic Acid acts as a delivery system, making nutrients bioavailable to the skin, allowing for deep penetration. This ingredient can transform minerals into molecules that are much more easily absorbed into the skin. Therefore, your cells can take in a higher amount of nutrients using Fulvic Acid. The best part about this fantastic ingredient is that everyone benefits from using it. It is incredibly reparative at the cellular level, so those who suffer from any type of compromised skin and the inflammatory issue will significantly benefit from the use of products with the ingredient Fulvic Acid. What benefits will come to my clients when using products formulated with Fulvic Acid? Skin concerns like dermatitis, psoriasis, eczema, seborrheic keratosis, pruritus, actinic keratosis, acne, and aging skin all have one thing in common: inflammation. Many of these uncomfortable and sometimes debilitating skin disorders can be controlled when the inflammation is managed. This innovative ingredient is believed to be exceptionally effective in treating the skin because of its anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties. Fulvic Acid’s anti-bacterial effect is attributed to its ability to balance our body’s pH levels. When we have too much acid in the body, our immune system cannot function the way it needs to. Our pH level should be just above neutral; at this level, our immune system can locate and destroy bacterial overgrowth linked to acne breakouts. The topical application of Fulvic Acid reduces the production and impact of pro-inflammatory substances. Fulvic Acid is a potent antioxidant, so it is very beneficial in preventing oxidation and inflammation, which are both main culprits of aging skin. As a powerful antioxidant, it will behave as an electron donor or acceptor depending upon the need for balance in skin cells. When the skin gets inflamed and damages the skin, it alters collagen and elastin production, causing it to age. The use of Fulvic Acid is essential to improve skin health and vitality. This is particularly important when treating aging skin as it helps to protect the cells. Does Fulvic Acid increase cell-turnover rate? No, it does not. This ingredient increases the function and performance of the cells, but it does not have anything to do with cell turnover rare. Fulvic Acid does not behave like an acid, but it will enhance the abilities of acid to work better within the skin. Are there risks of using Fulvic Acid? There are no known risks of using this ingredient. Our bodies need Fulvic Acid to function correctly. Electrolytes, such as Fulvic Acid, are essential to the health of both the body and the skin. It is a natural organic substance with so many benefits and no known side effects. Is Fulvic Acid a common allergen? No, it is not. Because it is an electrolyte, the body will naturally accept it as needed for health and proper function. How is Fulvic Acid related to enzyme production? Enzymes are a crucial part of cell metabolism, and there has to be an enzyme reaction for the total metabolic activity to occur. Fulvic Acid helps to stimulate enzymatic reactions in cells, helping to produce maximum stimulation of enzyme development. Fulvic Acid is also said to have a coenzyme effect resulting in increased enzyme and cell stimulation levels. The use of Fulvic Acid in skincare is essential to the skin and has unparalleled benefits for improving overall skin health. Fulvic Acid and its unique composition and capabilities bring cells to their highest level of performance, which is very important for the skin’s overall health. Fulvic Acid is the ingredient that everyone needs for optimum skin cell function.

If you have any questions and would like to speak to one of our friendly Master Aestheticians in your area, please email

Written by The Institute of Skin Science

Q&A Fulvic Acid
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