Friday, February 27, 2009

Dr. Laslow Skin Routine

A few months ago I wrote that I have a slightly weird but awesome skin routine that came from Dr. Laslow. My Texan friend Rhonda, who has skin that easily caused me to approximate her age as 20 years less than it was, swears by it. She's done it every day since she was 18 years old, and believe you me, I do it every day now.

Dr. Laslow was a dermatologist back in the 1960's, I believe, who it was harder to get an appointment with than the president of the time, they say. Once he died, a couple major skin care companies bought all of his books and products and stripped them off the shelves. None of his stuff is available any more. I'd assume that it's because, if you use this method, you don't need to buy the expensive products that those companies sell. There is a book available that is written by a female journalist who was a patient of his and documents meeting with him and all he said, along with other things:
I bought it on Amazon a couple years ago. You can now get it there for under $2.

The method outlined in this book goes off of the theory that skin ph maintenance is the most important thing. Your skin is pretty acidic, and the soaps you use to wash it (which would always be basic in nature) strip that acidity away, leaving your skin exposed to pollutants. What's usually done next is moisturizing it, and the author of the book above likens over-moisturizing skin to watching an ice cream scoop slide down a wall after it's been thrown up against it. Gross, but effective imagery, I say. Apparently, rather than moisturizing stripped skin artificially, the goal of this method is to seal in your natural moisture, giving your skin to remain smooth and tight, rather than softening it with that mystery-ingredient moisturizer and allowing gravity to take hold.

So, here's what you'll need.
1) a large bowl. I use a wannabe Tupperware from Ikea. Actually, what you're supposed to do is scrub your sink before each use, but I both am lazy and live with boys. Ilk. I just keep the bowl in the bathroom cabinets and throw it in the dishwasher every now and then to sanitize it.
2) facial soap. You're supposed to use a ph balanced one. I used to use this:

But, I can no longer find it in any store, anywhere (I could probably order it from or something but again, lazy) so now I use this:
3) and here's the odd part - apple cider vinegar. Yeah, you'll smell like a pickle for 5-10 minutes after doing this whole thing, so avoid people. Solution? Doing this in the beginning of your routine. So afterwards, while you're de-vinegar-smelling, you can be brushing teeth, fixing hair, changing into pjs, whatever.I use Heinz because it's the least vinegar-smelling. Also, I definitely buy the above industrial-sized one. It lasts me about two months.
4) and, of course, a towel.

So, here's what you do:
  • Run tap water until it's hot. Really hot. Basically, as hot as your skin can stand it.
  • Place bowl under tap while you lather the face up and get it good and clean as the bowl's filling
  • When you're ready to rinse, rinse your face 30 times (the number is important) with the really hot water in the bowl.
  • Empty bowl, rinse it thoroughly.
  • Re-fill bowl about halfway or 2/3 of the way with hot water, and pour in enough vinegar so that the water smells strongly of vinegar and it slightly tints the water a yellowy/orange/brown (you know, vinegary) color.
  • Rinse face with hot vinegar water 30 times.
  • Dry face thoroughly (I definitely notice a difference when I leave my face damp. It's best to make sure it's super dry).
So there's the routine. And it sounds time-consuming, but now that I've been doing it for awhile, it probably takes me about three minutes. I have the best skin now that I've had in my life - and I've inadvertently stopped doing this before (over Christmas I ran out of vinegar on the east coast, and I didn't do it for a month). I see my old "friends" start to pop up within a day or two of stopping.

So, that's my recommendation! And, if you start to try this, don't expect to see your radiant new skin til about the third week, after doing this twice a day (morning and night). It takes that long for your skin to heal from the current damage, and keep the ph balance.

Not only will your skin be clear, it will be smoother, your pores smaller, your color better (rosy cheeks and all that), and it will be incredibly soft to the touch.

Give it a try! It's much cheaper than what most of us do to maintain clear skin, and so easy!

In other news, I've started planning for T's birthday. Right now is the first time I've ever wished he didn't occasionally read my blog, because I'm SO excited and wish I could tell you guys what I'm going to do. Don't worry, you'll get a full report once it's done :)

Today's whiteboard quote:
"Continuity gives us roots; change gives us branches, letting us stretch and grow and reach new heights."
~Pauline R. Kezer

1 comment:

Stephay said...

I'm glad you explained the vinegar thing. Because I wondered what you all had a bowl and vinegar under the bathroom sink for. My mind was imaging all sorts of things!

But your skin is gorgeous. And when Kristle was doing the regimen, hers was too.