Maintaining Corners, Edges, In-Betweens and Behinds by Deborah Tosline

 The Red Corner By XoMEoX (Red Corner) [CC BY 2.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

The Red Corner By XoMEoX (Red Corner) [CC BY 2.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

There are a million ways to be and ways to accomplish goals. Who is to say which is right?

Here is one way to care for facial skin.

I can’t help myself, I am compelled to maintain the main footprint AND the corners, edges, in-betweens and behinds of stuff.

It is challenging for me to clean my house, my car, practically anything because I get absorbed in maintaining the fine details which is time-consuming. However, my old stuff looks new.

While I am a fan of paying homage to corners, edges, in-betweens and behinds, for basic practicality and efficiency, it is important to recognize and honor points of diminishing return for any given effort. Devoting time to detailed tasks is useful but not always possible or necessary. It is wise to spend time on those details that will have beneficial results.

Saying that, forgotten corners, edges, in-betweens and behinds become grimy and are worthy of periodic attention in the long run. Having to deep clean embedded deposits in corners is a time consuming task easily avoided by consistent maintenance.

The corners, edges, in-betweens and behinds of skin care.

Initially, I cared for the main footprint of the face. I washed, nourished and practiced advanced skincare primarily on this area. With time, I extended my focus and all practices and applications to include my neck and décolletage and observed a noticeable difference.

Tom Haggerty practices scalp exercises to maintain the health of his hair. As a result, in my observation, his forehead is enviably tight.

 1106 Side Views of the Muscles of Facial Expressions By CNX Anatomy 2013 [CC BY 4.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

1106 Side Views of the Muscles of Facial Expressions By CNX Anatomy 2013 [CC BY 4.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

Amongst mature, healthy individuals in an idealized visual society, who hasn’t pulled their cheeks back a bit with their fingers to revisit the past?

Ok, hear me out. Maintaining corners, edges, in-betweens and behinds of your facial skin will improve skin health and function and allow those areas to potentially tighten and support the main footprint of the facial skin by gently pulling on it.

Facial corner, edges, in-between and behind suggestions:

·      Facial exercises are mandatory; plan accordingly.

·      Exercise scalp muscles to lift the forehead, which will lift the eyebrows.

·      Protect the front and back of the neck from the sun using scarves, scarves + hats and physical sunscreen.

 Gray1194 by Henry Vandyke Carter [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Gray1194 by Henry Vandyke Carter [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons


·      Protect the sides of the face from sun exposure. Carry a large scarf to wear alone or with a hat to protect the sides of the face while driving/riding in the car, hiking, yard work, etc. Scarves, so handy for a lady or gentleman.

·      It is most important to practice daily skin care in areas that are often neglected. Get a micro-fiber cloth and scrub potentially ignored areas including the back of your neck, hairline, and around the ears, etc., to increase circulation and stimulate the skin.

·      Apply nourishing, high quality skincare products to the front AND back of the neck, décolletage, around the ears and along the hairline as well as the main footprint to rejuvenate, revitalize, and maintain holistic skincare.

·      Advanced skincare practices, whether obtained from a med-spa, dermatologist, or as a DIY’er should try to treat the corners, edges, in-betweens and behinds. These treatments can be powerful for a person with a healthy constitution as the skin will respond positively. However, would a med-spa or dermatologist treat these areas?

 Edited from Getty Villa - Collection (5305205576) By Dave & Margie Hill (, via Wikimedia Commons

Edited from Getty Villa - Collection (5305205576) By Dave & Margie Hill (, via Wikimedia Commons

Reminder… when the corners, edges, in-betweens, and behinds are maintained in optimum health they tighten and support the main footprint by pulling slightly from behind.

Health = Beauty

Conversly, perhaps if only the main footprint is treated, as it tightens it may actually pull the behind towards the front! No! Treat it all for balance.

Maximize efforts on the corners, edges, in-betweens and behinds to maintain or to reverse the results of past poor self care practices and monitor improvements. It may take a long time to reverse a degraded skin condition. Choose slow progress over continued degradation.

It’s primarily a matter of slowly replacing poor self-care with nurturing self-care and don’t forget the corners, edges, in-betweens and behinds!

Take good care of yourself. xo Deborah

Natural Methods to Smooth Forehead Muscles for Results that Look and Feel Amazing by Deborah Tosline

 By modified by Uwe Gille (Gray378.png) [Public domain, Public domain or Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

By modified by Uwe Gille (Gray378.png) [Public domain, Public domain or Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Click on the green-blue text for links to more information.

Determined to naturally smooth my forehead, I developed an evolving routine to smooth the muscles and overlying skin. The routine has a forehead focus combining several practices and expanding on techniques developed by Sanford Bennett (1841-1926) who, I’ve mentioned before, remodeled his entire body.

I’ve been practicing this routine for about 2 months and have seen results, which keeps me going. This is a long-term effort, it may take six months to one year to see significant results. For me, this little practice has further validated the effectiveness of skin remodeling for rejuvenation.

It feels shallow to write an entire article on smoothing the forehead! What can I say, skincare is a relaxing, fun, and beneficial hobby for me. Here is my shallow little story. My entire life I’ve worn bangs, thick, wispy, short, and long. One brief time in my early 20’s I tried to grow them out and could not face so much of my face. Abort. I never tried again.

Until now. At 59, it feels like a bad time to ditch bangs. Bangs curtain my worried concentrating brow which is fast becoming a deeply wrinkled brow and for no good reason! With bangs, I didn’t notice my constant forehead angst. Once I began pinning the bangs to the side of my face my constant forehead expressions became only too evident to me. Yes, my forehead muscles respond to life as if I am in a constant state of fear and/or deep concentration, alternately lifting or furrowing my brows, all the while keeping the muscles in constant flex.

I had to do something or I would never survive the bang grow out. Know what I mean?

 Carol Burnett By NBC photo by Elmer Holloway-stamp is faint. (eBay item photo front photo back) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Carol Burnett By NBC photo by Elmer Holloway-stamp is faint. (eBay item photo front photo back) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

My Forehead Smoothing Routine focuses on these elements:

·      Relax and release forehead and scalp muscles

·      Strengthen the forehead and scalp muscles

·      Smooth the forehead fascia and muscles

·      Remodel the forehead

Relax and release the forehead muscles

This is easier said than done. If fact, it feels impossible. I am using mindfulness to try to change habits. How is this possible? Neuroplasticity is the study of our thankfully plastic brains.

Here’s the concept. When one thinks a thought, a suite of neurons fire. Repetitive thinking of the same thought results in development of a neural pathway (super highway). If one can recognize the thought and stop it (ha ha, but it IS possible) the neurons do not fire and over time atrophy and shrink, weakening the neural pathway. That is why we can change ourselves, but only through mindfulness practice.

There are other benefits to releasing facial tension besides a softer relaxed facial expression. Less facial tension probably reduces headaches. Science has shown that tense facial muscles result in increased emotional tension. Similarly, scientists now know that the act of smiling produces happy biochemistry in the brain.

Dr. Jared Edward Reser writes, “Our faces are full of tense muscles that hold excessive tension throughout the day and during sleep. The tension throughout our brow, eyes, nose and jaw causes us to feel anxious, and because of our mammalian heritage, it causes us to breathe shallowly. These tense muscles also go through degenerative processes that involve muscle atrophy, reduced circulation, inflammation, fat deposition, as well as trigger point and scar tissue development.”

I furrow my brow when I write or think about almost anything. This pattern of behavior is entrenched in my neural pathways. It’s time to make a change. I furrowed my brow while I typed this! I have a long way to go.

I now know that relaxing facial muscles feels good.

 Old_zacatecas_lady.jpg: Tomas Castelazo derivative work: Dobromila [CC GFDL (], via Wikimedia Commons

Old_zacatecas_lady.jpg: Tomas Castelazo derivative work: Dobromila [CC GFDL (], via Wikimedia Commons

Strengthen the forehead and scalp muscles

I am reinvigorating my facial exercise program, which has been a little lax. I primarily use Flex Effect, which uses resistance training, a method that can increase the size of the muscles. Facial muscles are teeny tiny, but they do respond over time. Think of strengthening one’s scalp to lift the forehead.

Tom Hagerty developed circulation promoting, hair preserving, forehead lifting exercises and has maintained his hair and scalp health. Check out his tight forehead.

 It's blurry, no matter. Tom Hagerty at 74

It's blurry, no matter. Tom Hagerty at 74

Smooth the forehead fascia and muscles

I am currently using these methods to smooth facial fascia and muscles:

Index Knobber II

I use the Index Knobber II to help break my furrowed brow habit during (ha ha) deep thinking at work. I keep this tool nearby and rub my forehead muscles smooth throughout the day to relax my forehead. This great little tool is easy to hold and may be used to apply deep sustained pressure on targeted muscles.


I use the FaceBlaster to release facial fascia. It’s handy and I like it. I use it as directed on warm oiled skin. I rub the FaceBlaster across my forehead and I can feel the indentations in the muscles and fascia become shallower with time. I am slowly removing the deep ridges and let me tell you, it is good. The tool helps release tension, fascial adhesions, and tightness.

Sanford Bennetts wrinkle rubout

Sanford Bennett is the epitome of body and skin remodeling. After being ill at 50, bed ridden in poor health, and wrinkled, as he wrote, he devised and devoted himself to a series of bed exercises and was deemed the man who grew young at 70, based on medical examinations. His face had become smooth and without a single wrinkle.

Sanford’s wrinkle rubout consists of contracting the muscle while vigorously rubbing it as it heats up. Afterwards the muscle contraction is released and the muscle is smoothed and massaged. I use this technique with my fingers, the Index Knobber II or the FaceBlaster.

Facial trigger point therapy

Trigger point therapy helps to release muscle tension, allowing for proper circulation and muscle function. Breaking muscle tension habits are challenging. Physically releasing the tension is an important aspect of the routine.

Again, Dr. Jared Edward Reser writes, “Compression and deep tissue massage are the only real way to get the tension out. Compression will reinvigorate the muscle, reverse the muscle shortening, increase the blood supply, and allow the muscle to grow and thereby eat up the fat that surrounds it. If you want your face to look healthy, and feel amazing, invest some time and effort in my facial massage regimen…”


I’ve upped my Frownie use during this time. These are awesome. Unfortunately, their price recently increased. Frownies hold the muscle in place as you sleep (or as you are teleworking) to help stop unconsciousness muscle contractions.

 Before Frownies

Before Frownies

 After Frownies

After Frownies

The Frownie website states this: “FROWNIES Facial Patches assist to soften and smooth the appearance of deep wrinkles or fine lines mechanically. The muscles of the face cannot move under the patch, keeping you from frowning or expressing while you sleep or any time you have the patch on. Yet, the paper patch allows the skin to breath promoting skin restoration and repair. By holding the crease flat and relaxed while you sleep the body can relax muscle memory.”

Remodel the forehead

There are a variety of ways to remodel the skin. I am focusing on using the Tripolar STOP a radiofrequency devise and the Derminator a mechanical dermaroller. I am also using facial skin massage and facial skin and bone rejuvenation techniques from Flex Effect, these are very powerful practices. The daily products that I use are summarized in the February article. They contain active ingredients that promote collagen production. These practices will strengthen the skin and prevent bone loss in the forehead.


With any skin treatment routine, it is vital not to over-aggravate the skin. Be mindful of the skin’s response to any treatment and give it time to rest. I allow my skin to approach irritation then I stop and give it a nourishing break. Over irritated skin results in a lack of balance and should be prevented, always.

It is clear that my forehead skin wrinkles reflect the terrain below, the fascia and muscles. It is absolutely necessary to smooth deeper tissue to smooth facial skin.

Overall, this effort is a fairly small time investment. I’ve changed a few daily habits and added short treatments for my forehead.

My anecdotal results:

·      I notice other folks smooth brows. Is it botox or are their brows naturally smooth? I asked a natural beauty lady friend and she said no botox.

·      I emulate my natural beauty lady friend’s brow, it’s a serene experience.

·      My body and brain have learned that I do not want to furrow my brow. Now when I forget and furrow, the area becomes red. This never happened before. It is probably a little sensitive.

·      At these times, I practice full release of all head muscles. Try it.

·      My muscles have become substantially smoother. In the past, when I used a facial tool, the device would preferentially drop into muscle dents and now the devices move more smoothly across my skin as the muscle dents become shallower.

·      My skin became thicker in the spot between my brows where I use the Index Knobber. This is similar to developing calluses, thicker skin, when learning to play the guitar. It’s the same process. I am developing a forehead callus. Ha ha, that’s funny.

·      For more even results, I began using the Index Knobber on my entire forehead. Should take another month to thicken up the rest of the forehead skin.

·      I don’t mind growing my bangs out anymore. In fact, I don’t know why I had bangs my whole life. I am embracing full-face exposure.

·      The more smooth my brow, the tighter my forehead. I did not research this and gosh this article is so long already. My theory is that when the muscle is constantly flexed it becomes lax and when the muscle is relaxed it tightens up!

·      This is more than skin deep. The release of facial muscle tension can be life changing.

Take Away?

We have more power over ourselves than we may realize. If you have a desire to do so, embrace your power to naturally change yourself in whatever way your heart calls out to you to do.

Take good care of yourself.


The Rambo Barbie Rugged Routine for Skincare by Deborah Tosline

 Photo taken December 2013 at 54, see below for a more recent selfie

Photo taken December 2013 at 54, see below for a more recent selfie

Click on the blue-green text for links to more information or to products that I currently use. I  am not affiliated with any of the products.

As we hiked off the mountain at dusk, running to cross the bridge before nightfall, my friend called to me “Rambo Barbie”, yes it was funny and kinda true.

Rugged femininity is my approach to lifestyle and skin care.

There are a variety of ways to achieve skin care goals and assertive flexibility is a key to success. Your skin care routine typically depends on available resoures including: funds, time, products and information. With so many ways to accomplish a goal, you may pick and choose what works best for you based on where you live, your routine, and lifestyle.

My ‘Rambo Barbie Rugged Routine’ for Skincare was founded on having little expendable income; a need to protect my skin from southern Arizona’s harsh clime; and a desire to take good care of my largest organ to promote health and smooth clear skin.

The basic tenets of my skin care routine vary slightly however my use of additional skincare practices varies over time. Change takes effort but it’s beneficial to cross-train and stimulate the skin in a variety of ways for maximum benefit and self-maintenance.

Here is something different

I am carefully aggressive in my skincare practice. For decades, estheticians, product advertising, and everyone else told us to treat the eye and neck skin different from facial skin. I followed that advice for a couple of decades. After I began using advanced Do-It-Yourself (DIY) skin care methods, I saw significant improvements in my facial skin while my “delicate” eye and neck skin continued to decline.

Rambo Barbie executive decision: “my eye and neck area shall be treated the same as my facial skin”

 Photo taken October 2016 at 57

Photo taken October 2016 at 57

After about a year of treating my eye and neck skin the same way that I treat my facial skin, I began to see significant improvements that continue today.

Time for Self-Care

I’ve made time for self-care and shared this time with my daughter to teach her its value for well-being and health. My daughter is grown and at this stage I have a little more time to practice self-care. Although, I am busy with a full-time career, spare time personal projects, marketing my “Skin Remodeling DIY” book, and pursuing a healthy lifestyle, you know how it is, but I do make time to integrate small DIY skin care practices into my day.

Daily Morning Routine:

 Silk Microfiber Cloths

Silk Microfiber Cloths

  1. Silk microfiber cloth is a gentle exfoliator/skin polisher
  2. emulsifies skin oils which rinse off with water
  3. does not abrade, no matter how hard I scrub = I love
  • Apply DIY glucosamine/niacinamide serum, let dry or wait five minutes You can buy ingredients here
  • Apply DIY 20% vitamin C serum, let dry or wait five minutes You can find several Vitamin C DIY recipes here
  • Apply DIY collagen building and skin firming lotion – I am currently using peptides. Buy a peptide and add it to a lotion that you are currently using. You can also buy ingredients here
  • Apply sunscreen
 Sun Cream by Winter Sun in Flagstaff, AZ

Sun Cream by Winter Sun in Flagstaff, AZ

  1. apply craft formulated physical sunblock with zinc and titanium oxides
  2. every day, rain or shine, inside or out
  3. apply to face, neck, chest, and hands
  • Apply mineral makeup focus on natural ingredients
  • Avoid applying products with synthetic chemicals
  • Use sun protective clothing, umbrellas, hats, driving gloves, scarves
 Carry a scarf at all times, so handy.

Carry a scarf at all times, so handy.

Daily Evening Routine

 Near Infrared Light Emitting Diode (LED) Spa

Near Infrared Light Emitting Diode (LED) Spa

  1. built using internet instructions
  2. began using 1/8/18
  3. 10 to 40 minutes daily, so far, its just so good
  4. it’s fantastic
  • Still love to turn on near-infrared LED lamp while brushing teeth
  • Scrub face and neck skin with silk microfiber cloth and rinse:
  1. Removes makeup, oil, dirt, grime delicately
  2. I super scrub face from ear to ear, hairline to chest, eye and neck skin
  3. The gentlest physical exfoliator that I’ve ever used
  • Apply 0.1 percent Retin-A two to three nights a week
  • Apply Alpha Hydroxy glycolic acid lotion when I remember but ideally once or twice a week
  • Apply craft formulated cream once or twice a week
  • Apply compounded hormones
  • Apply Frownies to release forehead muscles and retrain them to relax


Weekly Skin Treatments - I try to fit in a little bit of this and that

  • Apply raw local honey or “fresh from the leaf” aloe vera gel covered with a piece of Nori seaweed for a 20 minute (longer if you have the time) nourishing skin treatment
  • Release facial muscle tension/trigger point release, e.g. roll forehead on a firm 2-inch yoga ball
  • Reorganize and smooth facial fascia:
 FaceBlaster Fascia Tool

FaceBlaster Fascia Tool

  1. Sanford Bennett’s wrinkle rubout
  2. Face Blaster fascia buster
  • Practice facial resistance and other exercises:
 Flex Effect resistance facial exercise program 

Flex Effect resistance facial exercise program 

  1. FlexEffect
  2. Facercise
  1. Short needle to increase penetration of high quality products
  2. Short needle then apply green tea before using near infrared LED spa

 Additional Skin Treatments that I Strive to Use

  1. When I do facial lymphatic massage
  2. When I remember (I no longer have blackheads)
  3. After dry brushing
 Lymphatic Facial Massage

Lymphatic Facial Massage

  1. When I remember, it eliminated under eye puffiness, now I forget to use it
  2. When I have a cold or sinus condition
  3. Following advance skin care treatments to reduce inflammation
  1. Use long needle four to six times per year
  2. Promotes collagen and elastin
  • Ultrasound (sonophoresis or phonophoresis), during facials or after dermarolling
  • Dermawand radiofrequency device, blemish treatments as needed
 Photo taken March 2017 at 58

Photo taken March 2017 at 58

At almost 59, I can say that I have the best skin of my adult life. Healthy skin is beautiful skin. It is possible to make changes to your lifestyle or skin care routine at any time, if you are consistent, you will see improvements. I veered away from mainstream skin care decades ago and my pocketbook and skin condition are better for it. I hope that sharing my skin care routine inspires you to rethink your skin care and integrate new protocols into your personal routine. Choose practices and treatments that you can easily integrate into your lifestyle. Use this time for relaxation, rejuvenation and health = beauty.

Take good care of yourself! xo Deborah

Body Function - Choose to Lose, Maintain, or Gain Health = Beauty by Deborah Tosline


Click on blue-green text for internet link.

Sometimes I practice guitar. Recently, I tried to play a riff and it hurt my finger so bad I could feel my forehead muscle frown and the little wrinkle between my brows deepen. I relaxed my forehead (will use Sanford Bennett’s wrinkle rubout later) and told my finger not to worry, it will only hurt a little before it gets stronger. Just like self-care.

Choose to Lose, Maintain, or Gain?

We are premium high-performance beings endowed with a body and mind that have amazing capabilities. We are evolutionary and plastic, capable of adapting to a variety of conditions. However, the body is not infinitely capable of maintaining health while being bombarded by synthetic chemicals from the highly processed foods and products that we consume and absorb. The average woman applies more than 500 synthetic chemicals on a daily basis. Nor are the body and brain able to maintain strength, flexibility, conditioning, lubrication, and intelligence when they are not intentionally used.

Instead of aging en masse with the mainstream culture, choose not to lose any of your capabilities and personal identity.

Choose not to lose… instead maintain and increase your body and brain capabilities.

Choose to invest the time and discipline required to provide the self-care that you need to function at your highest level so that you may endure and enjoy all that life offers.  Beauty will follow.

 Source: By Thomas Geminus (1510-1562) after Vesalius [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Source: By Thomas Geminus (1510-1562) after Vesalius [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

To me, beauty does not consist of certain facial constructs; instead beauty resides in all people in different ways. Beauty reflects the multitude of differences among us. Holistic beauty is an expression of kind inner thoughts and actions, physical and mental well-being, hard work, deep rest, great circulation, time in nature and nutrient dense nourishment that combine and are reflected as individual beauty.

Self-care is not a fad or a luxury; it is a personal, familial and societal responsibility to keep your mind and body strong and flexible.

Self-care practices began thousands of years ago. Yoga has been practiced for at least 5,000 years (maybe 10,000) as the need for special personal maintenance to optimize well-being and strength were recognized.

What have you chosen to lose?

In skin care and self-care, I ask, what have you chosen to lose? Unless you have debilitating physical and/or mental conditions that prevent practicing self-care you are capable of maintaining all aspects of yourself at a high and beautiful level… if you choose.

What have you given up? The strength to walk a mile; ability to touch your toes and move freely; living without pain; having supple glowing skin, bright eyes, and a sharp and calm mind; the list will be similar and different for all.

The good news is that it is never too late to choose to maintain and gain.

You may earn back almost each and every part of yourself. Our evolutionary elastic selves are poised to respond to change (adaptation) for survival and will improve with effort. You may become stronger, softer, smoother, smarter - all that you desire and nurture. Check out Sanford Bennett’s transformation from 50 to 70 years of age. He implemented self-care practices and became the “man who grew young”.

Choose to change the way that you care for yourself. Choose to change for your survival. Choose to keep as much of yourself as possible to live a high-quality life in every moment as you mature. You don’t need a lot of money for self-care. You do need time, motivation, discipline and fortitude to nourish and challenge yourself.

 Fortitude  Source:



The next time that you say something like “I can’t, because I am too old to _____ (fill in blank) INSTEAD SAY I can’t because I chose to lose the ability to ________. Today, the mainstream cultural aging condition is more about a lack of self-care. Loss of function is a personal choice given up under the excuse of aging.

Choose you. Let your body and brain know that you need all of you! To prove it, you have to use it… all!

Exercise your brain and get smarter! Exercise your body and get stronger! Stretch everything, regain flexibility! Choose to maintain and gain intelligently and with guidance via teachers, YouTube tutorials or visit the library for instructional books.

Choose to change, grow your mind and body for you, for me, and for all. While you are at it, please, please promote a healthy environment - spread kindness and take good care of the Earth, it is the basis of our health and source for everything that we have. When health is optimized, beauty will glow.

 The Fountain of Youth Source:

The Fountain of Youth Source:

Absolute Basics for Self-Care

·      Learn how to cook using fresh and pure ingredients

·      Eat whole, nutrient dense food

·      Practically eliminate processed food and sugar

·      Read labels

·      Avoid synthetic chemicals

·      Buy organic - at a minimum the 12 most chemical laden vegetables/fruits “dirty dozen”

·      Buy raw (nutrient dense) organic fats and oils, toxins are held in fats and persist

·      Stop using synthetic fragrance anything and everything

·      Use healing essential oil scents only, nose has special receptors for these oils

·      Skip the drugstore, most of the time

·      Buy or make basic body care products, easy, save money, avoid synthetic stuff

·      Stop using cleansers with synthetic chemicals

·      Back to basics with home cleaning products, save money and reduce exposure

·      Promote lymphatic circulation

·      Increase overall circulation

·      Cardio 6 days/week walk, bike, run, hike, machines, jump rope, any way you can

·      Stretch a little daily and a lot once or twice a week

·      Practice being mindful and meditate to relax the brain

·      Breath from the diaphragm

·      Practice parasympathetic breathing, longer on exhale than inhale

·      Maintain health of soft tissue using trigger point therapy

·      Work hard

·      Sleep, sleep, sleep

·      Rest hard

·      Wear sunscreen and use sun protection

·      Other…

To gain, you MUST push yourself beyond what you think you can do

·      Try to learn excruciatingly difficult mental things, music, dance, math, language

·      Improve cardio – go regular and go faster, alternate and go a little faster

·      Increase strength (a little heavier and different challenges over time)

·      Stretch, stretch more (lightly, persistently increase range of motion of everything)

Start slow, select a few and strive to do more. You have a lifetime to grow young.

Ask others to join this journey, teach children and loved ones how to care for themselves. Give the gift of whole health to yourself and all. Beauty will follow.

Take good care of yourself! xo Deborah

Under the Skin – Mesotherapy and Dermarolling Techniques with Concentrated Serums - Challenging Times Call for Advanced Treatments by Deborah Tosline

 Anatomy The Skin - NCI Visuals Online By Don Bliss (artist) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Anatomy The Skin - NCI Visuals Online By Don Bliss (artist) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Click on the blue-green words for internet links.

Is it possible to radically improve skin vibrancy using Mesotherapy techniques combined with concentrated skin care serums? I think so, don’t know yet and am excited to find out. Here’s why.


I discovered vitamin C’s super healing powers several decades ago when I mega-dosed during a cold. I probably dosed 3,000 to 5,000 milligrams per day (mg/d); today I mega-dose 5,000 to 10,000 mg/d. The Vitamin C Foundation recommends taking vitamin C to bowel tolerance, when your intestines rumble that’s your limit. 

 Crystals of vitamin C By Doc. RNDr. Josef Reischig (], via Wikimedia Commons

Crystals of vitamin C By Doc. RNDr. Josef Reischig (], via Wikimedia Commons

You might ask:

Is mega-dosing Vitamin C dangerous?  No, vitamin C as ascorbic acid is water soluble, any excess is excreted.

Is this hard on the liver?  My doctor recently told me that I have the liver enzyme levels of a teenager (I am 58).

Is it wasteful?  My recovery is speedy, so… not to me.

What happened to my skin the first time that I mega-dosed Vitamin C?  My skin looked incredible! Amazing! Bright!

I became a confirmed fan of vitamin C.

I mega-dose intermittently, as needed. I consume vitamin C daily in several forms. Vitamin C is essential for biochemical functions, promotes production of collagen and elastin and so much more, like any good anti-oxidant.

In the late 1980’s, I began taking anti-oxidants as “insurance” against free radical damage and for health. I continue to consume and apply vitamins, nutrients and other constituents daily for optimum health. I take a break one day a week or one week a month and vary my nutraceutical menu based on desire and needs.

My point:

I can feel the vitality of ingesting vitamins and I have a progressive and evolving yearning to support a nutrient rich lifestyle. This led me to seek out and try the variety of methods that folks use to optimize health (= beauty).

Mesotherapy and Dermaroller Mesotherapy

There’s another way to introduce vitamins into your system, under the skin.

Mesotherapy micro-needles inject plant extracts, homeopathy, pharmaceuticals, vitamins, and other bioactive substances beneath the epidermis and dermis to treat medical and cosmetic conditions. Dermaroller Mesotherapy creates miniscule channels into the epidermis or dermis allowing for instantaneous penetration of pure, concentrated, nutrient rich serums.

The Mesotherapy technique was developed in 1952 by French physician, Dr. Michel Pistor and has a history of use for the management of pain and vascular disorders.

 By National Institutes of Health [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

By National Institutes of Health [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Mesotherapy micro-injections and Dermaroller Mesotherapy promote instant absorption of highly concentrated serums in targeted locations for local diffusion and rapid results.

 dermaroller needle sizes

dermaroller needle sizes

Laboratory research is limited and the results of this study showed neutral results in facial skin using Mesotherapy. Practitioners think the study may have been too small to accurately assess the practice.

Anecdotal evidence by Mesotherapy and Dermaroller Mesotherapy practitioners indicates that the practice is known to boost cellular regeneration and effectively promote skin health and overall appearance.

DIY Mesotherapy via Dermarolling

Internet stores make it is possible to purchase do-it-yourself (DIY) Mesotherapy kits containing a dermaroller device and vitamin concentrates or antioxidant cocktails that may profoundly revitalize the skin. Based on my experience, it is possible to promote skin remodeling or rejuvenation by enhancing skin health using intense nourishment and advanced skin care practices.

I have not tried nor am I affiliated with either of the companies listed below, although they do look particularly interesting to me.

Laboratories Surface-Paris distribute at-home MESO-GLOW and MESO-BRIGHT mesotherapy treatments that deliver a meso-roller with a concentrated dose of vitamins and hyaluronic acid serum that promise to illuminate and intensely hydrate the skin. sells an interesting Derma Roller Kit that contains one 0.5 millimeter (mm) Derma Roller with 540 microneedles and vials of DNA Liquid and Dexpanthenol. Guaranteed to promote healthy skin.

Curious about DNA Liquid and Dexapanhenl?

DNA Liquid is a natural polymer anti-oxidant that promotes collagen. Dexpanthenol is Pantothenic acid, essential to skin function. 

The most important aspect of applying any skin product is purity. Mesotherapy and Dermarolling result in rapid skin absorption. Before using these techniques, always test any new products on a patch of skin and observe for evidence of an allergic reaction for 24 hours.

If you are not ready to try DIY Mesotherapy, check to see if there are reputable facilities near you.

 By ER and Jenny (], via Wikimedia Commons   

By ER and Jenny (], via Wikimedia Commons


For now, I began my DIY Dermarolling Mesotherapy treatment using a 0.015 mm dermaroller (an oldie but a goodie with little use) with an oil based vitamin C, aloe vera leaf gel or raw organic honey covered by a piece of nori sushi seaweed. This is my  “gotta have it now” Dermarolling Mesotherapy treatment hack. It’s good. So, so good.

Take good care of yourself.



This information is intended to be used as general information only and is in no way intended to replace medical advice, be used as a medical treatment program, diagnosis, or cure of any disease or medical condition. There are no warranties, expressed or implied, regarding the effectiveness of the practices described here. Products or substances discussed herein are for educational purposes only and are not intended as recommendations of the author or publisher.

Facial Muscles: Tight and Ropy or Relaxed and Soft by Deborah Tosline

 1106 Front and Side Views of the Muscles of Facial Expressions By OpenStax [CC BY 4.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

1106 Front and Side Views of the Muscles of Facial Expressions By OpenStax [CC BY 4.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

Note: Click on the blue/green text for links to articles.

Facial muscle tension is wrinkling your skin (and may be increasing anxiety). Heal thyself with compression.

Wrinkles and folds in facial muscles cause the overlying skin to wrinkle and fold as well. Smoothing tense muscles into a relaxed state provides a beautiful foundation for the overlying skin. Compression may be used to eliminate muscle tension to relax and smooth muscles allowing the overlying skin to appear smooth as well.

I regularly practice myofascial soft tissue release and trigger point therapy to relieve muscle tension or pain in body muscles. For me, it is a terrific, pain eliminating do-it-yourself soft tissue therapy.

Trigger point therapy is extremely beneficial and may be used as an effective practice to release muscle tension to promote muscle stretching and to reduce or eliminate pain. The premise is that when a muscle develops an injury: it stops contracting and lengthening properly, circulation decreases, and congested areas form where waste accumulates. These areas may feel like a small or large painful lump in the muscle, or the entire muscle may be tight and ropy. The congested area or trigger point causes the muscle to shorten and typically refers pain to other parts of the body and also pulls on and causes pain in nearby joints.

 Trigger Point Complex By Davidparmenter (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

Trigger Point Complex By Davidparmenter (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

Trigger point therapy uses compression on congested areas in the muscle. During compression, wastes are squeezed out allowing fresh blood, oxygen and nutrients to flow into the area. This provides nourishment and supports normal muscle function. With consistent treatment, congested areas and the associated pain may be greatly reduced or eliminated. For me, trigger point therapy is effective. When a new pain arises, I treat it with trigger point therapy and it disappears. Magic do-it-yourself medicine.

 Trigger-Point-myofascial By Muthu.G (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

Trigger-Point-myofascial By Muthu.G (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

Do you hold tension in your forehead? I try not to, but I do. Further, I furrow my brows while reading, writing and when thinking J I noticed and felt the tightness in my forehead and eyebrow muscles and decided to try trigger point therapy. I used a 3-inch compression ball to compress my forehead trigger points. The treatment was a little painful but also a relief when the tight forehead muscles relaxed. After the treatment, my forehead muscle was smooth and the overlying skin was smooth as well.

I was curious about this technique and searched for articles on facial muscle compression. I found two interesting references. The Yamuna Ball is used to apply pressure to the face to stimulate bone health and enhance facial muscle stretching. An article by Dr. Jared Edward Reser titled “Compression for the Face: Composure, Aesthetics and Mental Health” discusses methods, Dr. Reser’s personal experience including before and after photos, and instructions on how to use compression to eliminate muscle tension, smooth facial muscles and even change one’s attitude for the better.

 Dr. Reser in 2010 before facial muscle compression

Dr. Reser in 2010 before facial muscle compression

 Dr. Reser in 2016 after practicing facial muscle compression.

Dr. Reser in 2016 after practicing facial muscle compression.

Dr. Reser has determined that “wrinkles in the skin don’t come from using the muscles. Rather, wrinkles form over dormant muscles that have been strained repetitively.”


Over time, habitual facial expressions result in depleted and fatigued facial muscles. Dr Reser states that “tense muscles around the orbits of the eyes contribute heavily to looking and feeling tired”; in addition he believes that habitual facial expressions and the associated muscle tension may actually cause a “psychological anchor” for a poor mood.

The bottom line is that tense facial muscles do not function properly, develop trigger points and scar tissue, and have reduced circulation resulting in muscle atrophy. Dr. Reser states that “compression and deep tissue massage are the only real ways to release facial muscle tension.”

Essentially compression of facial muscles would be completed across the entire face. Dr Reser recommends starting with target zones that identify facial muscles that are typically tight and result in muscle restrictions. 

 Dr Reser image showing eye muscles

Dr Reser image showing eye muscles

 Dr. Reser image showing eye compression

Dr. Reser image showing eye compression

Botox may be used to release tension and relax facial muscles. However, Botox paralyzes the muscle, reduces circulation and the availability of nutrients, which inhibits muscle growth. With time the botox treated muscle has decreased tone and reduced biochemical activity and atrophies or shrinks. In comparison, muscle compression costs nothing and results in relaxed, well-nourished and plump muscles with better muscle function and range of use. Compression treatment is not instantaneous but with consistent daily practice over time, all facial muscle tension may be released.

Dr. Reser believes that relieving facial muscle tension may be the primary determination of attractiveness,  “…the extent of facial tension can probably be seen as a marker of status hierarchy that we wear on our faces. If your face, head, neck, and throat were completely free of muscular tension, you would likely be among the most beautiful people in the world.”

Dr. Reser recommends:

1.     Deep tissue compression to reduce facial muscle rigidity.

2.     Breathe diaphragmatically while firmly compressing tender muscles to help reverse muscle rigidity.

3.     Compress tight facial muscles for a few minutes a day until facial muscles are no longer sore, stiff or ropy.

4.     Trigger point therapy will reduce facial tension and promote stronger, more prominent facial muscles with increased range of motion.

Try to reduce muscle tension. Notice facial tension and practice wearing a serene relaxed facial expression and a slight smile as you move through your day. It will look nice and science shows that smiling makes you feel great, but that’s another article.

I have begun a daily facial muscle compression routine and look forward to reducing facial muscle tension and other potential changes.

Take good care of yourself.


Yes, Do-It-Yourself Advanced Skin Treatment Devices Work. The Science of Increasing Collagen by Deborah Tosline

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Initiating a biochemical healing cascade (BHC) in the skin results in rejuvenation and better skin health. The BHC strives to maintain balance in the little biome universe of us. The primary action is an old story with a relevant premise; when it comes to skin and health “Use it or lose it” is truth.

The body is efficient. When a body part is not needed, based on exertion, the body only minimally maintains that part.  For example, if muscles are not exercised, they atrophy (shrink); if lungs are not exerted, they have reduced capacity; if the brain is not challenged, it declines; and if skin is not stimulated, collagen production slows.

The epidermis, the outermost layer of skin, is comprised mostly of a fibrous keratin protein that protects the body, the internal organs, and is the first line of defense against infection. All cells in the epidermis originate from its base. As new cells form, they push previously produced cells upward. As cells move toward the skin surface, they become flattened and die. Dead skin cells are shed, a process that slows with lack of stimulation. It typically takes new epidermis skin cells three to five weeks to move to the surface. The health of the epidermis is dependent on nutrients received from the layer below, the dermis.


The primary function of the dermis is to nourish and support the epidermis. If the dermis is not stimulated, it’s blood vessels and general condition decline. The dermis is made up of three types of tissue; collagen which is the glue that connects body tissue, elastic tissue which gives skin its flexibility, and recticular fibers which support connective tissue.

Advanced skin care techniques increase collagen and elastin by creating micro-injuries in the dermis. A micro-injury initiates a BHC to repair the wound.


Healing micro injuries involves three phases. The inflammation phase begins immediately as growth factors accumulate at the wound site. The proliferative phase involves a rapid increase in tissue formation that begins five days after inflammation and lasts about eight weeks. The tissue remodeling phase consists of biochemical processes that last from eight weeks to one year. Type III collagen is produced for about five to seven days and is subsequently converted to the stronger Type I collagen over a period of several months.

There are a variety of ways to stimulate the dermis and reap the benefits of the skin’s reparative nature. The following discussion describes a few of the many devices available that may be used at home.

Do not use advanced skin care treatments if there is a medical skin condition, the skin is irritated and/or inflamed, or there are open blisters, acne or sores. Address these issues first and ensure that your skin is in good health before using advanced skin care treatments described in this article.

Radiofrequency is used to tighten and lift sagging skin. It delivers electrical pulses and heat energy into the middle and lower levels of the skin and physically changes the skin’s molecular structure. Following radiofrequency treatments, the wound healing process results in the growth of new collagen and skin tissue that slowly tightens over time.


Percutaneous collagen induction (PCI), dermarolling, and micro-needling all refer to a technique recently developed by Dr. Desmond Fernandez consisting of a device that presses small needles into the skin. PCI does not cause and reduces existing hyperpigmentation and is safe to use on dark skin. PCI needle lengths from 0.5 to 1.5 mm penetrate the epidermis and dermis. The resulting channels close up a few hours after needling. With time, PCI skin rejuvenation noticeably improves the appearance of the skin as increased collagen and elastin production promote thicker skin.


Do-It-Yourself home laser devices for skin rejuvenation are an emerging market. Lasers produce a beam of concentrated light with high energies. These energies promote the production of cell biology energy and growth factors that result in the generation of new tissue. If you easily develop hyperpigmentation, precautions should be taken before using a laser device. Pretreat the skin for four weeks by applying actives that suppress melanin production.  

After an advanced skin care treatment, skin may be red and swollen and may result in pinpoint bleeding depending on the intensity of the treatment. This typically clears within 24 to 72 hours, or longer depending on the skin’s health. Results of advanced skin rejuvenation treatments are not immediate. It takes several months to a year to observe the full effects of the treatments on collagen and elastin production and skin tightening.

Advanced home skin care treatments may be used to increase collagen and elastin, thicken skin, and improve elasticity, however the results are dependent on general health and skin condition. The body’s healing system is dependent on a strong immune system. To optimize skin care treatment results consume whole, nutrient dense, unprocessed foods and drinks; reduce sugar intake; exercise daily; quiet the mind; reduce stress and sleep well.

My Experience

TriPollar Stop  - I used this device for the first time 9/23/17 and am impressed with its function! I liked the tangible feeling of the device heating up the skin. Treatment of the face and neck took about 20 minutes and was easy. I look forward to observing the results in about 6 months J

PCI – I have been a fan of PCI from about 2008. It was a secret of the internet at the time and the only way to use this technique was at home. Today, dermatologist offices and med-spa’s offer PCI treatments. I love short needle PCI for product penetration – only if using the purist products and the long needle PCI to stimulate the dermis, promote collagen production and reduce hyperpigmentation.

DIY Laser – I tried this for about 6 weeks, but it resulted in hyperpigmentation and I discontinued use of the device. I did not pretreat with a melatonin suppressing serum like Niacinimide/Glucosamine, which had I done so, may have reduced or eliminated the resulting hyperpigmentation. I subsequently eliminated the hyperpigmentation using a short needle PCI and Environ Vitamin A & C serum.


There are a variety of advanced skin care methods available. Consistent, repetitive use with a reputable device will typically improve the skin’s condition. Select a device that fits your income, lifestyle, and preferences so that you will feel comfortable and truly integrate the device into your skin care routine. Results take time so take photos, be patient, live a healthy lifestyle and take good care of yourself.


Stimulate the Skin or Else - Use It or Lose It by Deborah Tosline


For real, stimulate skin through exfoliation and massage or slowly lose the structure, elasticity, circulation, new cell production, and vibrancy of your skin.

The body is smart.  If there is no stimulation, representing a need, the body will slow new skin cell production and skin regeneration. To maintain circulation and rejuvenation at optimum levels, one must stimulate the skin.


Benefits of skin scrubbing include:

·      Break down unwanted toxins and increase skin circulation reducing the appearance of cellulite by reducing toxic accumulations.

·      Exfoliate dead skin cells to encourage new cell production resulting in smoother and brighter skin. PS. It can also help reduce ingrown hairs and acne.

·      Improve vascular blood circulation and lymphatic drainage. Release toxins and discharge metabolic body wastes.

·      Rejuvenate the nervous system by stimulating skin nerve endings.

·      Smooth muscle tone and fat deposits.

·      Promote skin absorption of nutrients by eliminating clogged pores. 

Note - If there is a medical skin condition, the skin is irritated and/or inflamed, or there are open blisters or sores, do not scrub or dry brush the skin.  Address these issues first and ensure that the skin is in good health before using the skin care practices described in this article. If the skin is fragile use a slow approach.


I’ve said it before; you don’t need to buy skin cleanser ever again. Skin care product manufacturers teach us through advertising what we “need” to buy. The truth is that many products have few benefits. Try replacing your current skin-cleansing product with the alternative skin cleansing method of using a microfiber cloth. I currently use a silk microfiber cloth every evening to scrub the heck out of my facial skin to remove make up, cleanse, and exfoliate. Consistent use of the microfiber cloth has made my facial skin stronger than ever. Exfoliating and agitating the skin is a must to encourage the body to produce new skin cells and promote regeneration.


Let’s take this skin softening and rejuvenating practice to the body using dry brushing. When a brush is used wet, the brush is soft and not so stimulating to the skin. A dry brush used on dry skin is stimulating to the lymph system and to the skin structure removing metabolic waste and tightening the skin. Dry brushing begins at the body’s extremities with brush strokes that move towards the heart. After dry brushing, an oil of your choice is massaged into the skin before rinsing with warm water.

Dry brushing will cause a minor irritation and flush the skin; this sends a message to your body that it needs to generate new skin cells. Exfoliation will remove dead skin cells and unclog skin pores so that the skin may function optimally.  This will produce softer skin and increase penetration of high-quality nourishing oils applied to the skin. Stimulating and nourishing the skins natural biochemical processes promotes healthy and beautiful skin.

There are many ways to dry brush/dry scrub, here is one-way.

Scrubbing the back, even with a long handled brush can be challenging. The Salux is a Japanese scrubbing cloth. In Japan, “bathing is an art, a science, and a daily part of the lifestyle culture.” A Salux is a long narrow nylon cloth that makes it easy to scrub the entire backside and every little inch of the body. The cost ranges from $3 to $10.


As terrific as the Salux is, I’m a natural girl and I like natural fibers.

I found a natural fiber scrubbing cloth made from the Sisal fiber of the Agave plant.  The Sisal scrubber has handles on either end of a long woven agave fiber cloth with a hand mitt to scrub smaller areas for $9.50 from eBay (I think that this is a great price for a great product. I have no affiliation to this seller :) just sharing information.) This fantastic skin scrubber makes it easy to exfoliate and stimulate the skin all over the body.


Do not delay. Cleanse your face with a microfiber cloth every night. Dry brush or dry scrub your entire body front and backside, including the face, at least once a week.  Apply a high quality raw organic oil to the entire body like grape seed or avocado or coconut oil. Practice this routine for a month and let me know how it works for you. Get ready for softer smoother prettier skin that will keep you healthier too.

Take good care of yourself.

Sun Cover-Ups for Life. Health = Beauty by Deborah Tosline

Figure 14UVAandUVB2Revised3.jpg

Hyperpigmentation, freckles, sun-spots, wrinkles, and sagging skin are signs that your largest organ could use more sun protection.

The skin protects us from micro-organisms, dangerous bacteria, and toxins; it regulates temperature; provides sensory information; and excretes wastes.

Oh yeah, and… clear, fresh, luminous skin is beautiful.

The most effective, inexpensive, simple skin care practice is to cover the skin during sun exposure using umbrellas and protective clothing including scarves, hats, gloves, sun sleeves and more.

UVB rays penetrate the epidermis, are blocked by clouds and are at their strongest from about 10 AM to 3 PM. UVA rays penetrate the dermis, degrade collagen synthesis, are not blocked by clouds and are strong from dawn to dusk. If you are in the southwest, sun protection is a year round must. I began covering up in the mid-1980’s. Working as a geologist/hydrogeologist, I spent long hours in the Arizona sun. My instinct was to cover up. I purchased silk clothing, scarves and cotton gloves from the second hand store and covered up every time I worked in the sun. I wore a tank top covered by a long sleeve silk shirt and silk pants. I would wet the shirt and scarves during hot weather to stay cool. This practice protected my skin from direct sunlight, scrapes, and dirt. I began to cover up at home while doing yard work and ultimately began covering up during any outdoor activity. I wear a physical sunblock 365 days a year to reduce exposure from reflected light. Apply sunscreen to the backs of the hands, neck, chest, arms and other areas to reduce exposure.

In case you are wondering, despite decades of using sun screen and skin cover ups, my vitamin D levels are quite high.

One way to greatly reduce sun exposure is to cover up while driving to protect the hands, arms, chest, neck and face, that are often exposed to direct sunlight.

 Using a scarf for sun protection.

Using a scarf for sun protection.

It is easy to keep a pair of sun gloves, sleeves, and scarves readily available in the car for use every time you drive. Currently, most sun gloves and sleeves are available in beige. Boring, but I’ve worn them anyways every car trip. I recently sewed a pair of colorful sun sleeves that are much more fun to wear!

 Sun sleeve.

Sun sleeve.

 Self made "designer" sun sleeve :)

Self made "designer" sun sleeve :)

You can purchase protective clothing with UVA/UVB ratings or wear clothing with a tightly woven cloth. The tighter the knit or weave, the smaller the holes and the less UV that can pass through. Open weave fabrics provide much less protection. A shirt with an Ultraviolet Protection Factor (UPF) of 50 allows just 1/50th of the sun’s UV radiation to reach your skin. This would provide excellent sun protection, in contrast to a thin white cotton T-shirt, with a UPF of about 5, that allows passage of 1/5th of the sun’s UV. Australian studies show that lycra and elastane fabrics have UPFs of 50 or higher, followed by nylon and polyester. Read additional sun protection tips here.

 Full length bathing suit.

Full length bathing suit.

A few tips: During warm weather wear a tightly woven long sleeved linen shirt.  Note that tightly stretched fabrics provide less protection. Sun protective garments should cover a large amount of skin. Use large brimmed hats with a scarf to protect the sides of your face. Seek shade. Bring your own shade, carry an umbrella.

 Sun gloves.

Sun gloves.

Remember, sun-protective clothing doesn’t have to be boring: it can be light and bright and fashionable and fun. And when chosen and used correctly, it’s the best form of sun protection you can find.

After the sun goes down, strip off those sun cover ups and enjoy the health and beauty of pampered skin.

Facial Exercises – Do They Work? Of Course They Do. By Deborah Tosline, June 4, 2017

 By Patrick J. Lynch, medical illustrator (Patrick J. Lynch, medical illustrator) [CC BY 2.5 (], via Wikimedia Commons

By Patrick J. Lynch, medical illustrator (Patrick J. Lynch, medical illustrator) [CC BY 2.5 (], via Wikimedia Commons

Facial Exercises (FE). Do em?

Proponents hold them in high regard (as they should) for lifting and firming facial tone. Opponents blame them for stretching and degrading facial tone. Some doctors promote them and others admonish them.

What is true? Logic.

Exercise the body = strengthen muscles. Stop exercise = lose muscle tone. You can see it. The same thing happens with the face. Eating and talking do not strengthen facial muscles. Instead, the facial muscles are worked unequally, resulting in facial lines.

Muscles in the body connect bone to bone. Facial muscles connect bone to muscle and/or skin. When facial muscles sag, the overlying skin sags too. When facial muscles are firm the overlying skin is supported.

There are about 57 muscles in the face and neck depending on how you count.

Here’s the thing. Facial muscles are itsy bitsy teeny weeny. Once they atrophy or shrink, due to lack of use, they will require consistent exercise before they will be large enough for you to feel and begin to see a difference. The longer one waits to begin FE, the longer it takes to rebuild the teeny tiny muscles. When facial muscles are atrophied, it may require several seasons to see results. But hey, that is better than the alternative, which includes further muscle atrophy and sagging skin.

Plastic surgery fixes lax muscles only temporarily. Without exercise, those pulled taught muscles will continue to shrink and sag. No cream will firm skin that overlies sagging muscles.

The only option? A few simple FE integrated into a holistic wellness routine.

Why would FE NOT work?

Muscles cannot build and the body cannot regenerate properly under a poor quality lifestyle including:

·      processed foods

·      sodas and fruit juice

·      lack of nutrition

·      inflammatory diet

·      lack of cardio exercise

·      lack of flexibility

·      exposure to synthetic chemicals

·      sun exposure

·      negative attitude/perspective

FE will build muscles under a holistically healthy lifestyle including:

·      whole, nutrient dense, anti-inflammatory foods

·      organic foods whenever possible

·      alkaline based diet

·      daily walking

·      daily/weekly stretching

·      weekly strengthening

·      avoidance of synthetic chemicals

·      mindfulness meditative practice

·      weekly sauna to remove toxins

·      lymphatic dry brushing

·      think and act with kindness

What are you waiting for? There are many FE programs available. Most are isometric exercises. Resistance facial training works a contracted muscle against the weight of the fingers to promote muscle growth.

I’ve used FlexEffect Facial Building developed by Deborah Crowley from about 2002.

By the way, a contracted muscle increases circulation 10 times, resulting in fantastic looking skin.

For healthful beautiful skin, it’s time to embrace facial exercise.

 Oh gosh, not a fan of selfies. March 2, 2017 Posting this selfie to show effects of facial exercise. If I did them more often muscles would be stronger. 58 years.

Oh gosh, not a fan of selfies. March 2, 2017 Posting this selfie to show effects of facial exercise. If I did them more often muscles would be stronger. 58 years.

Product Review! Environ’s Youth EssentiA C-Quence; A, C and E oil; and derma-lac lotion by Deborah Tosline

I recently had the opportunity to test a variety of Environ Skin Care products. @EnvironUSA and I had followed each on Twitter and when they asked if I would try their products I was elated!

I must admit that I had researched Environ in the past and had concluded that Dr. Des Fernandes is a genius and one of the best dermatologists in the world based on Environ company practices and many before and after photos. Good un-retouched photos don't lie and personal experience has further shown that Dr. Des has got it going on. I am a big dermaroller fan too but that is another story.

It’s true, I have a personal bias for Environ and @EnvironUSA was not aware of this. Despite my bias, for all of us, I put my conscientious (earth) scientist objective perspective hat on during my trial use.

Youth EssentiA C-Quence

Environ literature describes the Youth EssentiA range as consisting of a complete skin care program with premium ingredients blended using a scientifically advanced synergetic combination of vitamins, antioxidants and peptides including:

·      Retinyl Palmitate and Retinyl Propionate to normalize and perfect the skin;

·      Vitamins C, E, Green Tea, Lycopene, Lutein, Rosemary Leaf Extract, and BHT to protect and smooth the skin;

·      Matrixyl ®3000, Dermaxyl®, Argireline®, Leuphasyl®, and SYN®AKE to reduce wrinkles, build and repair the skin; and

·      Butylene Glycol, Sorbital, Sodium Lactate, Hydrolozed Jojoba Esters to smooth and plump the skin.

Environ skin care product formulations are:

·      non-fragranced,

·      non-comodogenic,

·      hypoallergenic, and

·      colorant free.

Environ products:

·      are not tested on animals;

·      use the highest quality pharmaceutical grade ingredients tested for effectiveness, safety, and purity by independent laboratories;

·      use packaging designed to prevent light, air and bacteria from degrading the formulations;

·      use clinical tests to verify therapeutic concentrations of vitamins A and C, antioxidants, biopeptides and growth factors to ensure effective results.

During my six week trial I used:

·      Youth EssentiA C-Quence Vita-Peptide Eye Gel

·      Youth EssentiA C-Quence Vita-Peptide C-Quence Serum 1 - face

·      Youth EssentiA C-Quence Antioxidant Defense Crème - face

·      A, C and E oil -  face and body

·      derma-lac lotion - body 

Youth EssentiA Vita-Peptide Eye Gel, C-Quence Serum 1 and C-Quence Antioxidant Defense Crème

I’ve practiced what I call advanced Do-It-Yourself (DIY) skin care for decades including routine use of 1% Retin-A most nights while sometimes alternating with glycolic acid lotion and most mornings using vitamin C and Niacinimide/Glucosamine serums. I have (very) untanned olive skin that is quite tolerant of most strong skin care products.

The Vita-Peptide C-Quence Serum 1 product that I tested is the first of four levels of strength. I was not sure if I would notice improvements using the lowest level although this is an optimum concentration to begin with to prevent skin irritation.

As a part of the test, I stopped using my personal skin care routine for about six weeks while I used the Youth EssentiA range exclusively. I continued using an infrared light for 10-minutes mornings and nights on most days (I love it).

I used one pump of the eye gel and applied it to both eyes morning and night and it lasted about six weeks. It glides on easily, absorbs quickly, moisturizes well and felt good on. I followed this by one or two pumps of Serum 1 morning and night, depending on how dry my skin was, on my face and the front and back of my neck. A little bit of serum remains. The serum application also glides and absorbs quite beautifully. Afterwards, I applied one pump of the Defense Crème in all the same places. After six weeks, some of the Crème remains and I may get another week of use from it. The Crème spreads well when applied after the serum. After the applications, I place a couple of drops of water on my fingers and rub the residual cream on my décolletage and arms to maximize use of these high quality products.

I loved using the Youth EssentiA C-Quence products, which made my skin look bright and fresh (= youthful). These products contain a wide range of active ingredients at effective concentrations yet the formulations did not cause my skin to become irritated or flakey. The range is simple to use and would easily replace and improve on my current personal skin care routine because of its ease of use and the large variety of active ingredients contained in the range. While using these products, my skin looked plumped and vibrant. I received several compliments including one from a potential suitor who stated that he hoped that I did not mind dating an older man, he is 54 and when I told him that I am 58, he initially said that he did not believe me. Was it good genes, the healthy lifestyle, or Environ?

A, C and E oil and derma-lac lotion

I’ve rarely applied body lotion throughout my life. I do not like mainstream lotions with their unnecessary synthetic chemicals and perfumes and I don’t like how my skin feels when I apply them. However, I have enjoyed applying body oils and I use them regularly. Natural body oils are terrifically healthy when used for skin care although there can be drawbacks, for example some body oils require special care during application to protect fabrics and oils are challenging to carry in an overnight bag.

Wouldn’t it be nice if mainstream body lotions contained active ingredients at concentrations that improve skin quality like vitamins A and C which are scientifically proven to promote cell turnover and collagen production? These ingredients are often used in facial skin care and less so in body care products.

Environ’s A, C and E oil is a beautiful oil that delivers premium antioxidants at optimum concentrations in a non-irritating formulation that feels like luxury and works like hard labor to increase cell turnover. Continuous use of this product over time is sure to gently coax exfoliation and promote collagen production for fresh and bright body skin. This is just one step in Environ’s body skin beautification process.

After applying the A, C and E oil, I applied the derma-lac lotion, which has the consistency of a light oil, is easily applied and absorbs quickly. The gentle lactic acid ingredient promotes exfoliation of dead skin cells leading to skin cell turnover and collagen production.  After using the derma-lac lotion, it’s easy to feel a difference in the body skin texture and to visibly see improved skin quality. Note that this is a fragranced product and is advertised as such by Environ on their website. I am sensitive to and avoid using products with fragrances. I did use this product for the trial and can say that it did not aggravate my senses. Considering my aversion towards fragrances I enjoyed this product. However, I adore the benefits of essential oils and prefer them in my skin care products. Environ typically uses essential oils in their products so I am surprised and curious why they chose to use a fragrance in this product.

With my life-long love affair with body oil, Environ’s A, C and E oil and the derma-lac lotion fit my preferences and lifestyle. I really loved using these oils. I can feel and see the difference in the quality of my body skin, which has begun to lose some elasticity and would benefit from a little extra care.


I did my best to type up the Environ product ingredients in the following table. Some ingredients used by Environ are listed by the Environmental Working Group (EWG) as a moderate hazard including Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate, a common sunscreen ingredient. Propylparaben is used in the Vita-Peptide Eye Gel and is listed by EWG as a high hazard on their website with a “Fair” amount of supporting science. Fragrance (perfume) is used in the derma-lac lotion. Check ingredients on the EWG website. Environ states on their website that “to protect the integrity and quality of the new serum formulations, the antioxidant, Butylated hydroxytoluene (BHT), and the UV absorber, Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnimate, have been added.” I do have questions about Environ’s ingredient changes. Fortunately, Environ provides a wide selection of products and ingredients.


In my opinion, Environ’s products contain a multitude of beneficial active ingredients at concentrations that positively and effectively impact the skin’s biology with long-term use. Environ is devoted to providing pure, safe and effective skin care products and is simply one of the best skin care lines available. Quality does result in higher costs, especially in skin care. If you are going to invest your hard earned resources on a high quality skin care product, don’t waste your money with unproven yet pricey options that contain small concentrations of active ingredients. Instead, spend wisely. I recommend this line if you want to truly receive value and achieve noticeable results. Reconcile your skin care philosophies with the wide range of Environ products to select a product that suits your needs. Environ produces some of the highest quality products in the world.

Ingredient Lists by Product Name

Increase Collagen, Reduce Wrinkles, Reduce Pain and Detox with Light Emitting Diodes (LED) by Deborah Tosline

Want better skin (and so much more!)? You might want (and need) LED treatments. You can make it happen on a low budget, using hand held devises, or during a visit to a red light spa! Why?

Astronauts who tended gardens grown using Light Emitting Diodes (LED) during space missions healed faster than normal. NASA investigations showed that LED treatments shorten healing time by 40%, increase cell growth 150% to 200%, stimulate wound healing/tissue regeneration and quintuple (yes that’s FIVE times) the growth of fibroblasts and muscle cells in tissue culture!

Different LED wavelengths are used for different types of skin treatments. Blue (407 to 420 nm) and red (633 to 660 nm) are used to treat acne; red and yellow (588 nm) are used as anti-aging treatments to increase collagen production. Red and near infrared (600 to 1,000 nm) penetrate skin and muscle and promote skin healing, fibroblast proliferation, synthesis of collagen and accelerated tissue repair.

The National Institute of Health found that although results were gradual, there was a 25% to 50% improvement in skin roughness and tightness in all study participants after 6 months of treatment.

What are you waiting for? LED promotes skin rejuvenation and has anti-aging benefits. If beautiful skin and faster healing are not enough, infrared light therapy heals muscle injuries, relieves pain and has been approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for temporary relief of aching joints and muscle pain, increased blood circulation and relaxed muscles. 

Did I mention that infrared light may be used to detox the body?


There are several ways to take advantage of infrared light and LED technology for skin.

1.    Find a nearby red / infrared light spa with unlimited use of LED machines for a monthly fee. I visited a spa and used a LED machine once. I loved it, but they never provided the light wavelength specifications for the machine. The cost was $39 to $59/month. 

2.    Purchase a LED skin care devise for home use for $ to $$$, most cover a small area. I own a small red-infrared hand held devise. I love it and would like to cover a larger area. 

3.    Build a Do-It-Yourself near infrared light home spa. I have space at home to make a red LED and near infrared light spa.

There are instructions and photos on the Internet to customize your own DIY near infrared light spa.

For now, I am experimenting on the most basic level. I purchased this RubyLux infrared light that operates at 850 nm for $22. I installed the light in a porcelain base, clamp on light fixture. The bulb gets hot and can burn so use protective covers and take precautions during use.

I purchased this Super Ultrathin Red LED Grow Light Panel with a wavelength of 660nm for $22 per panel.

To date, I hung a couple of clamp light fixtures with infrared bulbs in my bathroom. I turn them on while I brush my teeth. I stack the red-light panels in the bathroom or hold them like a book in front of my face and neck for 10 minutes. Both lights feel great. I'll be designing a more permanent hanging system in the near future. Let's check my skin results in 6 months :)

Take good care of yourself, xo Deborah

Tugging on Eye Skin? How Some DIY’ers Make Eye Skin Firm by Deborah Tosline

There is a dramatic difference between some Do-It-Yourself skincare practices and standard skin care regarding how to handle eye and neck skin.

Urban myth, physicians, estheticians, mothers, friends and magazines warn us to handle the eye and neck skin delicately and I completely disagree.

I take care to protect eye and neck skin from sun exposure.

Beyond that, I use my hands to tug, pinch, pull and roll the skin around the eyes with gusto and vigorously scrub eye and neck skin with a microdermabrasion cloth. It feels terrific and enhances skin quality.

It all began when I integrated facial exercise into my normal exercise lifestyle and started practicing FlexEffect (FE) in 2002 at the age of 43. FE builds muscle with resistance training by using the hands to hold the facial muscles in place while the muscle is contracted. In addition, FE teaches strong massage techniques that include pinching the eyelid skin between the fingers and rolling, rolling, rolling the skin in an intense massage which feels terrific and, with time, promotes stronger and firmer skin.

It makes sense that facial muscles benefit from targeted exercise and that unused muscles atrophy. It’s disappointing, but eating, talking and normal facial expressions only partially use facial muscles resulting in imbalances and lines that form in the overlying skin.

I don’t differentiate my skin care products and I use the same products on eye and neck skin as I do on my face including advanced DIY skin care techniques. For me, treating eye and neck skin in the same manner as I treat facial skin has resulted in increased firmness and elasticity.

My results are anecdotal; I am reporting my personal experience. Check my photo, taken 10/17/16 at age 57 and review Deborah Crowley’s (founder of FE) lifelong photos. Decide for yourself.  

To me, it just makes sense that if the skin is stimulated, biologic processes will strengthen the skin to handle the force.

You may want to reconsider how you handle your eye and neck skin.

To toughen up your facial skin find a set of facial exercises and massage programs that fit your finances and lifestyle. Start slow and build your facial exercise/massage intensity to promote muscle strength and skin processes.

Strengthening facial skin and muscles is an important part of a beauty regimen.

Take good care of yourself. Deborah


Safety in Skin and Personal Care Products

 The Ladies' home journal (1948) By Wyeth, N. C. (Newell Convers), 1882-1945 [No restrictions], via Wikimedia Commons

The Ladies' home journal (1948) By Wyeth, N. C. (Newell Convers), 1882-1945 [No restrictions], via Wikimedia Commons

Gosh I wish it were not so, but the products that are readily available to us by mainstream retail have questionable benefits and potential health risks, despite the pricy options.

The safest skin and personal care products that we can use contain organic and nutrient dense ingredients and do not contain questionable preservatives, fragrances and synthetic ingredients.

Personal Care Products including moisturizers, perfumes, lipsticks, polishes, makeup, shampoos, hair colors, toothpastes, and deodorants are not tested for safety or regulated by the Federal Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

Under law, cosmetic products and ingredients do not need FDA premarket approval, with the exception of color additives. In general, a manufacturer may use any ingredient and is responsible for ensuring that the ingredient and the finished cosmetics are safe.

Are manufacturers providing effective products and ensuring our safety?

The Huffington Post reported: “Most cosmetics and personal care products on store shelves today contain five major categories of toxic ingredients. These are: frank carcinogens (cancer causing); precursors of or “hidden” carcinogens; endocrine or hormonally disruptive; penetration enhancers; and allergens.”

Yikes… and further…

“Our skin is highly permeable. Less than one-tenth of an inch thick, skin is a porous membrane that is highly sensitive to toxic chemicals. What we put on our skin affects our health just as much as, if not more than, what we put in our mouths. Some toxic ingredients illegally remain unlabeled. Of particular concern are hormonal phthalates, and synthetic “aroma boosters” which strongly intensify organic fragrances.”

With news reports of potentially unsafe products and many unknown causes of disease it just makes sense to suspect that our health is tied to everything we consume and use.

The Environmental Working Group (EWG) is a non-profit environmental research organization based in Washington, D.C. “An EWG analysis of government and industry sources shows that at least 146 cosmetic ingredients may contain harmful impurities linked to cancer and other serious health impacts, including 3 of the top 20 most commonly used cosmetic ingredients. Our analysis of ingredients in 7,500 personal care products shows that because some of these ingredients are used so widely, the vast majority of products on the market have the potential to be contaminated with impurities. None of these impurities are regulated by the federal government.”

Don’t despair! Our skin and personal care product future is bright! Today, there are more healthy options available than ever And you can give yourself Do-It-Yourself skin and self care that will be better than any mainstream retail products. So, it’s time to eliminate mainstream retail ingredients and products and find organic skincare or, like me, you can DIY and use premium ingredients, at the lowest cost, to achieve maximum effectiveness. No joke. Giving oneself DIY premium simple or advanced skin care feels like a Canyon Ranch healthy self care lifestyle. Health = Beauty (and so much more) 

Take good care of yourself.

Deborah Tosline

Want a Better or Lesser Brain for You and Your Children? By Deborah Tosline

 By Images are generated by Life Science Databases(LSDB). [CC BY-SA 2.1 jp (], via Wikimedia Commons

By Images are generated by Life Science Databases(LSDB). [CC BY-SA 2.1 jp (], via Wikimedia Commons

Do you want to intentionally lack brain capacity or function for yourself or your children?

The dominant mainstream culture consists of highly processed food, high sugar consumption, sedentary lifestyles, low-level emotional states and poor stress management.

This lifestyle is so wide spread that it is accepted and considered normal. Yet study after study shows that the brain is negatively impacted by each and every one of these lifestyle habits.

These en masse tendencies are promoted by consumerism and profit combined with psychological marketing and development of products that appeal to our simplest tendencies and addictions.

High sugar and processed carbohydrate consumption keep the body in a state of inflammation leading to oxidative stress, damage by free radicals and worse, a decrease in brain volume and structure. Is mainstream eating worthy of dementia? We now know that Alzheimer’s is not poor luck and that there is a link between diet and dementia. Unfortunately, we do not fully understand the negative impact of the processed foods that we consume today. 

But wait, you can further degrade the brain. Don’t feel like walking miles, doing movement? Science shows that inactivity remodels the brain and that a sedentary lifestyle reduces brain neurons.

Another habit associated with brain degradation, is a lack of stress management. Do you allow yourself to live in a heightened state of stress or are your children under stress? Stress produces cortisol which causes a reduction in brain connections that are associated with learning and memory.

Let’s be strong together and function at the top of our ability. Shun the mainstream lifestyle. Ignore the naysayers (whose brains are shrinking). Let’s grow big brains in our children.

Choose the path of holistic or complete health. Eat whole organic food with lots of greens, move-move-move most days, and learn how to practice mindfulness to reduce stress. Its never too late too change! Just 24-weeks of physical activity has been shown to result in a 1,800 percent improvement of memory, language ability, attention and more. 

Let’s create a new mainstream.

Move, any and every way you can :) by Deborah Tosline

Take a walk, stretch and strengthen at home watching youtube, take a class, join a gym, take a hike, errands on the bike, move any way and every way you can.

I was compelled to walk daily while pregnant with my daughter at 29. I don't know why, but I followed my gut instinct. When it got too hot, I biked and when I became too large, I swam. I began swimming laps for the first time in my life while pregnant and swam 1 mile, 3 times per week until I delivered. And, I never stopped. I pushed my daughter in a stroller until she graduated to a bicycle and eventually joined me walking. 

I began working out 1 hour a day, six days a week in 1989 and continue today at 57. Walking makes me feel great and clears my head. When I am tired, I do it anyways and tell myself to just go slow, which rarely happens once I get going. I speed walk, hike, bike, yoga, swim, use machines at the gym or at home. I don't really care how I do it. Rain or shine, dark or light, inside or out I move.

As if the primary benefit, feeling great, is not enough, additional benefits are too numerous to elaborate on. You can bet its great for your skin.

Through the years, I felt that it was the increased circulation that felt good and why not. The human body has between 650 to 840 muscles, depending on who is counting and even more depending on whats counted. With 100,000 kilometers (62,137 miles) [What!?!] of blood vessels to transport an average of 5 liters (6 quarts) of blood as its pumped through the body delivering oxygen and nutrients it seems that movement is mandatory to keep everything lubricated and flowing.

So, do yourself a favor and move, take the kids with you. I love family exercise. Now, my daughter is 27. It makes me feel good to know that she integrates exercise into her busy schedule. And, exercising together is one of our favorite things to do, as well as finding another great Thrift Store and taking a spa day :)

Take good care of yourself xo Deborah, 8/17/16

Healing and Self-Care


It's been more than a year since I published Skin Remodeling DIY and I am grateful to be part of a growing community of folks who are interested in skin care, personal health, social well-being, and environmental care. When we invest is these areas of life, we promote holistic health in all regards. 

Health, in all its forms, is beautiful.

Visualize the skin of a baby, child, or young adult. The skin of youth is velvety soft, smooth, clear and even toned. One way to maintain youthful skin is to keep it fresh looking. Good health provides a great foundation, basic skin care practices provide minimum maintenance and advanced skin care methods can result in radiant skin.

Stay tuned and join me in practicing and striving towards nourishing self-care, loving kindness, environmental compassion, social empathy (and skin care) to nurture ourselves and all. 

Quick tip: stress produces cortisol which degrades collagen. To counteract stress, set a timer for 5 minutes, close your eyes, and try to maintain a blank mind (no thoughts) until the timer goes off. Focus on your breathing, a beautiful image, or a meaningful word. This is an excellent way to reduce the impacts of stress.  

Take good care of yourself and others, Deborah