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Fall Skin Tips
By Rob Hardwicke, President and Product Master

Around this time of year, we can feel the planet in transition. The sun's arc flattens out, temperatures are cooler, leaves and ground coverings begin to change color. It's a time of year that is both invigorating and sad. We get some strange burst of energy (probably genetically programmed for harvest time) and at the same time, begin to mourn the passing of the long, sweet days of summer.

"Hang on - I thought he was going to talk about fall skin care tips?"

I am - but I can't help waxing poetic at least ONCE in a while! So here we go: one of the things that is striking at this time of year is how much drier the air becomes. Have you noticed that its always right around the end of September (or earlier or later, depending on where you live) that you find yourself reaching for the hand cream or lip balm? Darned'est thing...

Unfortunately, what often happens is that we ignore the signals for a while, and before we know it, it's December and our skin is wrecked. Of course, here at Awakening, we specialize in helping you hard-playing types who like to let things get out of hand. So if it's December and your hands are already wrecked, don't fear. We've got just the thing... But we also try to provide some sound preventative advice to those of you who care to listen. Hey - the world's a big place. There's room for all of us, right?

So if you're hoping to get a jump on winter by preparing your skin now, you've come to the right place. What follows is a surefire set of 4 easy steps to counter the dehydrating effects of fall on your skin, and make the transition into winter a soft and silky (rather than a rough and cracked) one.

1. Change soaps

Remember, your skin may already be compromised by three months of chlorine, lots of sun, and salt water. These things can wreak havoc on your skin's "acid mantle" (that's the part of your skin that fights off infection and is generally responsible for maintaining your skin's robust health). So once the air gets dry, you really need to play nice with your skin. Most soaps (and even many "all natural" ones) are drying in the extreme. And unfortunately, many commercial "moisturizing" soaps are even worse, because they're full of nasty skin care ingredients you ought to be avoiding at all costs. Look for soaps without chemicals and dyes, preferably something with essential oils and a base of olive or coconut oil.

For example, here is the full ingredient list for Dr. Bronner's Peppermint Soap (the kind in a bar). Talk about purity!

Saponfied Organic Coconut Oil, Saponified Organic Palm Oil, Saponified Organic Olive Oil, Organic Glycerin, Water, Hemp Seed Oil, Jojoba Seed Oil, Mentha Arvensis Extract, Peppermint Oil, Sodium Chloride, Citric Acid, Tocopherol (Vit. E).

2. Cool it on the showers

One of the most satisfying things you can do when it gets chilly out is take a nice, long, hot shower. Well, I don't want to be a party-pooper, but I have some bad news for you: long, hot showers are possibly the WORST thing you can do for your skin, this side of bathing in benzoyl peroxide. The intense heat fully opens up your pores, and because moisture likes to travel from where it's cooler to where it's hotter, much of the moisture in your skin literally goes up in steam.

What skin likes a lot better is warm water, preferably infused with Dead Sea salts, a.k.a. "bath salts". But all bath salts are not created equal. We enthusiastically recommend the brand Masada (no affiliation), which can be found in most drug stores and natural grocers.

Now obviously, most of us don't have time for long baths before work, but when you can take the time, treat yourself to a nice soak with either bath salts or oatmeal (yes, oatmeal - it's a centuries-old remedy for itchy skin that has truly stood the test of time). And if you need to get clean quick, just do it in temperate water in as short a time as you can. And then...

3. Hydrate!

Those of you who have taken the time to poke around our site have probably heard the word "hydrate" more than once. The reason is simple, and it has two parts:

a. 80% of common skin conditions can either be improved or eliminated by hydrating your skin properly. Take a gander at our customer testimonials to see the huge range of skin problems our products have helped.

b. Very few people have a clue how to hydrate their skin properly. (Don't worry, it's not your fault.)

It's "b" that we're primarily interested in at Awakening Skin Care. You'll notice that we don't use the term "moisturizing" when we talk about our products. That's because almost every brand of skin care products claims to moisturize, and yet the vast majority of them do no such thing. So we felt like we needed a better term.

Just so you understand the concept, here's the quick version.

Skin hydration is a factor of two things, essentially: Getting moisture in, and keeping it in. Above I mentioned that, surprisingly, taking hot showers (like, in WATER) is actually a great way to DE-hydrate your skin. It's counter intuitive, I know, but it's the truth. The fact is, the very best plant-based skin care products on the market are really only doing half the job of hydration. They're really good at putting a barrier on the skin to keep moisture from escaping, but are doing nothing to facilitate the internal hydration process.

For this, there is one ingredient, and one ingredient only that will work: Potassium. Potassium is the body's natural hydration regulator. Essentially, the presence of potassium in the skin cells (and everywhere else in the body) allows your cells to know where moisture is needed. So when you apply a dose of our Dead Sea mineral products (rich in pure potassium), you're opening the channels for hydration in exactly the way the body needs. The result is skin that feels luxurious and silky, unlike anything you've experienced since babyhood.

In fact, our products are so different from any others on the market, we offer a no-hassle, 100% money-back guarantee on everything we make. Which hasn't hurt us much, because after 15 years in business, I can literally count on one hand the number of returns we've had. So go ahead and grab a bottle of HANDS (our best selling product) today and use the whole darn thing. If you're not queuing up for another when it's gone, drop us a line and we'll refund your full investment. No questions asked.

4. Walk softly and carry a big stick

Oh wait, that's for my article about skin care in the Canadian wilderness. Carry on hydrating...