Why you -don’t- need hydroquinone! Hyperpigmentation part 3

Daisy Blossom Extract can lighten your age spots!

Daisy Blossom Extract helps to stop pigment issues in 3 out of the 5 steps!


In Step 1 we learned why SPF is so incredibly important, and Step 2 touched on MSH inhibitors.

Step 3:

Tyrosinase Inhibitors

“Tyrosinase is an oxidase that is the rate-limiting enzyme for controlling the production of melanin.”  That sentence comes straight from Wikipedia.  It’s kind of confusing.  Really you just need to know that there are a LOT of ingredients that help to stop pigmentation at this juncture.  

I am only going to highlight a few of them for you, but first I want to talk about perhaps the most recognizable tyrosinase inhibitor, hydroquinone.    

  • It’s a steroid compound, so it thins collagen over time
  • it’s banned in the UK because it’s possibly carcinogenic
  • it should only be used for three months at a time, whereas other lightening agents can be used constantly
  • it can cause darkening in some skin
  • exogenous ochronosis can occur (dark blue pigment)
  • hypopigmentation can occur
  • it’s not the most effective lightening agent on the market, and rebound darkening can occur when you stop using it

As I said above, there are loads of other tyrosinase inhibitors besides hydroquinone, and a lot of them are more effective and they don’t have crazy side effects.  Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Alpha Arbutin, Bearberry, Licorice, Daisy Blossom, Mulberry, Ferula Foetida Extract, Kojic Acid, and Azelaic Acid.  These ingredients can be found in Specktra6’s products Brightening Cleanser, Brightening Essence, Brightening Serum, and Bearberry Moisturizer,  and in a lot of Environ products.
Want to find out which products are best for your skin issues?  Contact Ginger at Specktra6 today!  

Hyperpigmentation, part 2

Age spots

You CAN have even toned skin again…

In my last blog, we talked about the importance of wearing an spf to help stop the pigmentation process.

Now we’ll talk about MSH, or melanin-stimulating hormone, and ingredients that help to block this from happening.

MSH Inhibitors
MSH stands for melanin-stimulating hormone. In response to ultraviolet light, it increases synthesis of melanin. MSH stimulates the production and release of melanin (a process referred to as melanogenesis)
There are 2 ingredients that can stop this process that I am familiar with, and they are SepiWhite™ and Daisy Blossom Extract.
SepiWhite ™ is a unique skin lightening agent made of natural amino acids with a lipid-residue. It can be found in Environ’s Clarifying Lotion, which I carry at Specktra6 here in Sheboygan.
Daisy Blossom Extract is botanically derived. Studies show that it effectively reduces skin pigmentation. It can be found in Specktra6’s own Brightening Cleanser and Brightening Essence.

You’ll see Daisy Blossom Extract come up again in future blogs about pigmentation- it works in at least 3 different ways, and in my opinion, making it a must-have ingredient.

Let me know if you want more information on these products!



Age Spots. Melasma. Post Inflammation Hyperpigmentation. Uneven skin tone.

It all can be categorized as “hyperpigmentation”
Hyperpigmentation is darkened areas of the skin due to sun damage or inflammation.

I’ve done some research lately into being able to help my client’s skin with this issue. And by research, I mean I got lost down the rabbit hole of google scholar and pubmed, trying to decipher studies. I’ve also been reading textbooks dealing with ingredients and how they affect the skin. It’s such a fascinating process!

Girl with problematic skin and scars from acne (scar)
Post-inflammation hyperpigmentation

From what I understand, it is a long process for your skin to produce those pesky brown spots. And during that process, we have the opportunity to interrupt (stop) it at (at least) 5 different junctions.

Step 1:
UV Protection
First and foremost, we can’t get anywhere if you’re not wearing sunscreen EVERY DAY. And when I say every day, I mean every day, even if you’re just planning on being inside the whole day. I guarantee you have some windows in your house, and that you look at screens (tv, phone, ipad, computer), and that you probably have some overhead light. (Indoor lighting – referred to as HEV, is a whole ‘nother post)
All of these can affect the production of hyperpigmentation.
I’m a fan of “physical” sunscreens for pigment issues- ones that contain titanium dioxide and zinc. These sunscreens actually deflect the light off of your face. Other sunscreens, such as oxybenzone, octinoxate, octisalate and avobenzone, create a chemical reaction and work by changing UV rays into heat, then releasing that heat from the skin. They are often referred to as chemical or organic absorbers. I don’t like chemical sunscreens for anyone with a hyperpigmentation issue.
Our favorite sunscreen is our own Specktra6 Tinted Mineral SPF 40.

Stay tuned for Step 2!


Do you shave your face?

Do you shave your face?

Are you getting ingrown hairs or acne where you shave?

Your razor may be to blame.

More blades aren’t always better.  Don’t attempt to use twin or triple blade “closer-shaving” razors. The first blade stretches the skin; the second (and third) shaves too close, cutting hair off below the skin line. When the skin bounces back, those hairs are set up to be trapped repeatedly under the skin every time you shave.

If you are unable to sanitize your single blade razor in between uses (by soaking in alcohol for 2 -3 minutes before use), we recommend stocking up on this disposable kind: http://amzn.to/2tA6jNx

If you’d like a recommendation of an acne safe gel for shaving, let us know!

Does Retin-A Cream actually CAUSE more breakouts?!

Were you prescribed Retin-A (or the generic, tretinoin) *cream* for your acne? 
Check the ingredients for isopropyl myristate – it’s an emollient in the product and is highly comedogenic- meaning that ingredient will likely break you out. 
Seems a little counterproductive in an acne cream, right?

Please contact our spa here in Sheboygan- we can help guide you to clear skin!  

Essential Fatty Acids for Skin Health

Basically every skin condition can be traced back to one main cause:  The lack of enough good fatty acids in the diet.  Fat free and low-fat diets are a main culprit!

This can be easily addressed with supplements- Omegas are a great place to start.   
There are a few different brand/ formulas of Omegas that I really like, and I like to switch it up, bottle by bottle, or combine 2 or three different kinds during the day.  I’ve been told that a good amount of Omegas are between 1000mg all the way up to 3,000 mg.  I’m not a doctor, and I don’t even play one on tv, so be sure to double check with your Dr or nutritionist for the right dosage for you.

A vegan choice would be Ahiflower Oil, or this plant-based “MegaX” blend Omega 3, 6, & 9, and a traditional formula would be this fish oil supplement.

Birth Control pills can actually make your acne worse!

Sometimes doctors will prescribe birth control pills to try to help a woman manage her acne- but did you know there are certain ones that can actually make acne WORSE?!  

In Specktra6’s acne management program, what to look for in a birth control pill is one of the many things we cover to help you get clear!  Contact us today to set up a consultation.  920.550.1684 or hello@specktra6.com