Sunday, January 22, 2012

Where does the time go? We turned ONE!

As most of you know, last year I left my job as a neuroscientist at the Mayo Clinic to start my own skin care company, hydrOtion. This is the sort of thing that only happens in movies, where a successful career-minded person chooses to mellow out, live by the beach and do something fun and far less stressful than research. In the movies it's glorious but in real life this is actually quite frowned upon! That's why I owe it to my friends and family (especially my science friends) who have been so supportive. The last year, without a doubt, would have been impossible without you guys.

We officially launched mid-November of 2010 with just four products. Last November we were so busy selling forty some products under two labels (hydrOtion and Beach Bum - thanks for all the orders) that we forgot to celebrate our very own first birthday! This is why it was so exciting when the lovely crew at The Beaches Online surprised us last week with a delicious cake and balloons (and a camera crew!) to help us celebrate our (belated) birthday! These things make my day :)
We're still developing products like crazy (just you wait, we have a ton of fun bath related items coming soon)! So far our primary mode of sales have been online through our website, Amazon and facebook. We're now seriously looking into getting a storefront in Jacksonville Beach! We have a few locations in mind but nothing final yet! Will keep you guys posted. Thanks again for all the love and support!

Friday, April 22, 2011

Happy Earth Day!

Take this day to appreciate mother nature and everything she has given us. Appreciate her, enjoy her, and take care of her. Not just today, but every day. Every day should be Earth day.

Here are some easy tips on how to reduce your carbon footprint:
  • Reduce, REUSE, REUSE, REUSE, REUSE, REUSE and recycle! This especially goes for non-biodegradables such as plastic and Styrofoam but also for everything else. I make some homemade Jams, so I keep the store bought containers and reuse them. Then recycle. (That's not really raspberry jam, it's home-made carrot jam. Go ahead and judge, I think carrot jam is delicious!)
  • Carpool.
  • Turn off things when not in use. This goes for the lights, electronic appliances and the water faucet!
  • Plant trees, flowers, herbs. It's not just good for the environment, it's personally rewarding too.
  • Insulate your home (saves on the bills too!)

Monday, April 11, 2011

Power of Pomegranate Oil for Skin

Pomegranate oil is a precious, light and gentle emollient with healing anti-oxidant properties.
This nutritious oil is incredibly rich in fatty acids such as linolenic and punicic acid (very rare) and full of powerful anti-oxidants that fight free radical damage.

Pomegranate oil was used for centuries in ancient Persia and Greece as a skin protectant. Several recent scientific studies (see reference list at bottom) validate its ability to:
  • Promote regeneration & strengthening of skin
  • Add luster
  • Stimulate keratinocyte proliferation
  • Improve elasticity
  • Protects against sun and other environmental damage with both anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial properties.
  • Protect against skin cancer.
While Pomegranate juice has been getting some press lately (see below ad for Pom Wonderful), the oil is actually more concentrated in antioxidants and essential fatty acids. Not only is it great for skin, it has been demonstrated time and time again (see many references below) to also slow obesity and several types of cancer when regularly ingested.

There is no doubt that pomegranate oil is simply one of nature’s best and most precious gifts. hydrOtion's Simply Pomegranate Antioxidant Face Creme has incredibly high concentrations of this powerful oil, without being diluted by other oils and fillers. This is our lightest and perhaps most powerful natural creme yet. It soaks into skin, leaving it nourished, healthy and smooth.

We love pomegranate oil so much, we've incorporated it in several other hydrOtion products such as the Smoothing Night Creme, Firming Day Creme, Ultimate Eye Creme and Super Vitamin Lip Conditioner.

Now for a little fun:

Scientific References:
  • Vroegrijk IO, van Diepen JA, van den Berg S, Westbroek I, Keizer H, Gambelli L, Hontecillas R, Bassaganya-Riera J, Zondag GC, Romijn JA, Havekes LM, Voshol
    PJ. Pomegranate seed oil, a rich source of punicic acid, prevents diet-induced obesity and insulin resistance in mice. Food Chem Toxicol. 2011 Mar 30. [Epub
    ahead of print]
  • Elfalleh W, Ying M, Nasri N, Sheng-Hua H, Guasmi F, Ferchichi A. Fatty acids from Tunisian and Chinese pomegranate (Punica granatum L.) seeds. Int J Food Sci
    Nutr. 2011 May;62(3):200-6. Epub 2010 Dec 1.
  • Caligiani A, Bonzanini F, Palla G, Cirlini M, Bruni R. Characterization of a potential nutraceutical ingredient: pomegranate (Punica granatum L.) seed oil
    unsaponifiable fraction. Plant Foods Hum Nutr. 2010 Sep;65(3):277-83.
  • Bouroshaki MT, Sadeghnia HR, Banihasan M, Yavari S. Protective effect of pomegranate seed oil on hexachlorobutadiene-induced nephrotoxicity in rat
    kidneys. Ren Fail. 2010 Jun;32(5):612-7.
  • Mirmiran P, Fazeli MR, Asghari G, Shafiee A, Azizi F. Effect of pomegranate seed oil on hyperlipidaemic subjects: a double-blind placebo-controlled clinical
    trial. Br J Nutr. 2010 Aug;104(3):402-6. Epub 2010 Mar 25.
  • Grossmann ME, Mizuno NK, Schuster T, Cleary MP. Punicic acid is an omega-5 fatty acid capable of inhibiting breast cancer proliferation. Int J Oncol. 2010
  • Khan GN, Gorin MA, Rosenthal D, Pan Q, Bao LW, Wu ZF, Newman RA, Pawlus AD, Yang P, Lansky EP, Merajver SD. Pomegranate fruit extract impairs invasion and
    motility in human breast cancer. Integr Cancer Ther. 2009 Sep;8(3):242-53.
  • Boussetta T, Raad H, Lettéron P, Gougerot-Pocidalo MA, Marie JC, Driss F, El-Benna J. Punicic acid a conjugated linolenic acid inhibits TNFalpha-induced
    neutrophil hyperactivation and protects from experimental colon inflammation in rats. PLoS One. 2009 Jul 31;4(7):e6458.
    PMCID: PMC2714468.
  • Baumann L, Woolery-Lloyd H, Friedman A. "Natural" ingredients in cosmetic dermatology. J Drugs Dermatol. 2009 Jun;8(6 Suppl):s5-9. 
  • Afaq F, Zaid MA, Khan N, Dreher M, Mukhtar H. Protective effect of pomegranate-derived products on UVB-mediated damage in human reconstituted skin.
    Exp Dermatol. 2009 Jun;18(6):553-61. Epub 2009 Mar 6.
  • Baumann LS. Less-known botanical cosmeceuticals. Dermatol Ther. 2007 Sep-Oct;20(5):330-42. Review.  
  • Lansky EP, Newman RA. Punica granatum (pomegranate) and its potential for prevention and treatment of inflammation and cancer. J Ethnopharmacol. 2007 Jan
    19;109(2):177-206. Epub 2006 Sep 10. Review.
  • Aslam MN, Lansky EP, Varani J. Pomegranate as a cosmeceutical source: pomegranate fractions promote proliferation and procollagen synthesis and inhibit
    matrix metalloproteinase-1 production in human skin cells. J Ethnopharmacol. 2006 Feb 20;103(3):311-8.
  • Mehta R, Lansky EP. Breast cancer chemopreventive properties of pomegranate (Punica granatum) fruit extracts in a mouse mammary organ culture. Eur J Cancer
    Prev. 2004 Aug;13(4):345-8.
  • Lansky EP, Jiang W, Mo H, Bravo L, Froom P, Yu W, Harris NM, Neeman I, Campbell MJ. Possible synergistic prostate cancer suppression by anatomically
    discrete pomegranate fractions. Invest New Drugs. 2005 Jan;23(1):11-20.
  • Kohno H, Suzuki R, Yasui Y, Hosokawa M, Miyashita K, Tanaka T. Pomegranate seed oil rich in conjugated linolenic acid suppresses chemically induced colon
    carcinogenesis in rats. Cancer Sci. 2004 Jun;95(6):481-6.
  • Hora JJ, Maydew ER, Lansky EP, Dwivedi C. Chemopreventive effects of pomegranate seed oil on skin tumor development in CD1 mice. J Med Food. 2003
  • Schubert SY, Lansky EP, Neeman I. Antioxidant and eicosanoid enzyme inhibition properties of pomegranate seed oil and fermented juice flavonoids. J
    Ethnopharmacol. 1999 Jul;66(1):11-7.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Hot ideas for Mobile apps

We're partnering with Enavox Corporation to develop some mobile apps for iPod/iPhone/android, and we need your help with ideas on what you’d like to have at your fingertips. These platforms offer some amazing possibilities, really limited only by our imagination. With features like GPS, Internet connection, camera, motion detection and more really neat things are possible when you put it all together.

Some cool apps currently available include the following:
  • Haircaster – Uses GPS to look up the weather forecast at your location, translate that to how your hair will react, and provides styling tips for the day.
  • OPI – Lets you browse the full line of OPI nail polish colors, sort by season, save favorites, and preview the color.
  • Lucky at Your Service – When you find a product you want, this app will find it locally, verify that it’s in stock, and have the store hold the item for you to pick up!
  • iStylist – virtual makeovers on your iPhone. Overlay a picture of yourself with new hairstyles, accessories, and makeup.
Here are a few of our top ideas so far:

1. Health & Beauty log – Love to analyze data and track down cause and effect? Start logging what you eat, what the weather is like, how you feel, and how you look. You’ll be amazed at how fast patterns emerge that can help you adjust your habits to look and feel better.

2. Ingredient database – We’ve talked a lot about some great and some nasty things that people are putting into skin care products. How about an app that allows you to snap a picture of a label while shopping, and the app recognizes the ingredients automatically and pulls details out of our extensive ingredient database, rates the products. Want a product that has a healthy ingredient or one that lacks a toxic one? Just type it in or snap a picture and we will find you the top products as well as where they are sold near you (based on GPS location)

3. Product picker – Too many options out there for skin care? Answer this set of questions about your skin type and current favorites to select top products we’re sure you’ll love. How about letting the app detect your location to take climate into account automatically?

4. Beauty/Skin care/Do it yourself tips – Tips about natural DIY hair, skin and body care. Pick the category and problem (e.g. brittle hair, or cyclic acne) and get tips!

5. Beautifier – We know certain features make a face more attractive – take a picture of your face and we will show you tricks to make you more attractive (e.g. how to use make up to make your face more symmetrical, etc).

6. Beauty for each Skin tone – Trying to match foundation/eye shadow/etc? Take a picture of the product and a picture of yourself and we will show you how it will look on you! We’ll also show you other good matches for your skin tone.

Sky’s the limit. Let us know if you like any of the above ideas and please, give us your wild, crazy and practical ideas!!! What would you like to see from hydrOtion?

Monday, March 14, 2011

Free Mini Face Cremes -- Limited Time!

We're so confident you'll love our new face cremes, you can try them now for free!

Like what you see? Tell your friends and like us on facebook for more exclusive offers, news and tips:) Happy Monday!

Monday, February 28, 2011

3 Tips for Oily Skin

So you have oily skin. Here are some tips that may help:

1. Gentle Cleansing - The biggest mistake people make is using very harsh cleansers for oily skin. The fact is that when you strip your skin of all its oils, it responds by producing even more oil. Opt for a very gentle oil or gel-based (rather than milk-based) cleanser. Oil-based cleansers are particularly good because while oil does not dissolve in water, it dissolves quite readily in oil-based compounds.

2. Moisturize and hydrate- Another common misinformation is that oily skin does not need to be moisturized. In fact, since water (and not oil) is what hydrates skin, oily skin can become very dehydrated. Using a light weight moisturizer can hydrate the skin and should be applied after cleansing. Make sure these moisturizers don't contain petrochemicals and other comedogenic products that can block pores and cause black heads. Drink plenty of water to hydrate your skin from within.

3. Exfoliate - use a gentle exfoliating agent or scrub as needed and focus on problem areas (which tend to be on the nose, chin and forehead). This also helps to clear the pores.

-hydrOtion Research Team

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Google Recipes is Awesome!

Google is just fantastic (no, they're not paying me to say this)! And here's a new awesome addition: Google Recipes.

It automatically searches and finds ONLY recipes based on the key words you enter. What's even better is you can limit the results by picking prep time, calories and additional ingredients common to the dish you entered. And as with everything Google, it's very user friendly.

1. Select a dish (or you can just put in an ingredient, like fish or even cilantro!) and press search.
2. Pick ingredients you want or don't want in the menu on the left.
3. Select your prep time (less than 15 minutes? sign me up!)
4. Select the number of calories per serving.