My journey to healthy beauty began in my mid-20's when, while living overseas, I developed cystic acne: large, inflamed painful pimples. I had mild breakouts as a teen but had never struggled with full blown acne. I was willing to try anything in my desperation to clear up my skin - and my bathroom cabinet, overflowing with 'sure to cure' acne products in every price range was a testament to my commitment. Not only did I purchase an overabundance of abrasive acne products, I also spent years ingesting acne medication, torturing my face with extractions and enduring harsh chemical treatments.
Feeling completely frustrated with the lack of improvement to my skin and left with few options, I took matters into my own hands and embarked on a strict food and product elimination diet. I removed wheat, dairy, sugar and all acidic foods from my diet and purged all of my ‘miracle creams' replacing them with more ‘natural’ products and ingredients. I made homemade yogurt not only to eat but also to cleanse my skin with. I blended essential oils with honey to create face masques. I introduced alkaline-rich millet, quinoa, amaranth and kale - all foods that I had previously never known - into my diet, all in the name of clearing my skin.
To my amazement, my skin did improve. It was then that I had my 'aha' moment and discovered that you REALLY are what you eat and my diet was affecting my skin. As the largest organ of the body, skin purges toxins and that’s what my skin was doing. I became fascinated with the complexities of the body systems and their effect on the condition of the skin and decided to return to school to study skin care.
Upon graduation, while researching products and ingredients, I was shocked to discover that many of the supposedly ‘natural' skin care products that I was using actually contained toxic synthetic ingredients that were hazardous to my health. It is a medically recognized fact that our body absorbs significant amounts of what we typically apply onto our skin and the average woman uses 12 beauty products a day. I wanted to learn and share healthy beauty with women who had fallen into the same "hoarder of empty promises beauty products".
In 2001, before 'organic was hip', I founded ORESTA organic skin care: Ottawa's first organic spa and beauty boutique. I invite you to join us on your healthy beauty journey.