Ask Leah: Mascara

Do you know what *eye* know ?

Eyelashes 101

Eyelashes consist of 10% water 90% proteins, keratin and melanin which give our lashes color .

We have between 150-200 individual hairs on the top and 75-100 on the bottom lash, which protect the eyes from debris.

When did mascara originate ?

1913 a French chemist named Rimmel developed it by using coal dust and a Vaseline type jelly.

Do you know what is in your mascara?

We are putting this cosmetic so close to our precious eyes that it’s important to know and understand what you are using. What you put on your body is as important as what you put in it.

Harmful ingredients in most popular mascaras:

  • Carbon black: found in mascara and eyeliner and brow products and it’s been linked to cancer and organ toxicity.
  • Parabens: Butylparaben , Ethylparben , propylparaben
  • Coal tar : these are dyes used for color and contain heavy metals
  • Formaldehyde: a carcinogen and is use as a preservative

I took 5 of the top brands that makeup artists prefer and found that most of the popular/trendy brands all contain the above harmful ingredients!

The point is you read what you put in your body shouldn’t you research what you are using on your body. Minerals and clean products especially important around the delicate eye area

Clean Mascara Alternative?
Jane Iredale mascara and their lash conditioner are my one of favorites , they contain wheat proteins and are much safer for the eye.

A Comprehensive Guide to Get Your Skin Wedding Ready!

Bridal Boot Camp Packages

  • Silver (1.5 months)
    • 2 Custom Treatments
    • 5 Body Wrap Sessions
  • Gold (3 months)
    • 1 Custom Treatment / month
    • Body Wrap 1x/ week
      • 2x / week (week of the wedding.
  • Platinum (6 months)
    • Custom Treatment 1x / month
    • Body Wrap 1x / week
      • 2x / week (2 weeks before wedding date.)

Pt. I: Everyone’s Skin is Different

Our skin is the largest organ in our bodies and it is affected by many different factors – diet, hormones, genetics, lifestyle, etc. Therefore, everyone’s skin needs something different. Some people have permanent discoloration and scarring that they need treated, some people have constant acne and breakouts, the list goes on and on.

The first step to finding the right treatment is identifying the skin issues that you want to fix. From here, we can lay a treatment plan according to the time frame that you have available. We suggest beginning to prep your skin either 6 months, 3 months or 1.5 months before your big day depending on what kind of treatments you are looking to get done and how many you will need for desired results.

Pt. II: Pre-Wedding Treatments by Leah Chavie

We can break up treatments into a few different categories:

  • Anti-Aging + Acne
  • Facials + Peels
  • Body

Anti-Aging + Acne

Often times, skin imperfections lie deep below the surface. It may be hyperpigmentation or sun damage from long ago or scars left from acne and blemishes. These types of issues are indeed fixable, but they often take a series of treatments. Here are several treatments for these deeper skin flaws:

  • IPL (Intense Pulsed Light): IPL is a treatment that targets pigmentation and discoloration of the skin. If you have hyperpigmentation, age spots or sun spots, this technology treats both brown (sun damaged) and red discoloration.
  • Laser Genesis Skin Rejuvenation: Laser Genesis targets signs of aging in the skin such as fine lines, wrinkles, pore size and skin texture. It also works to combat redness and scarring in the skin to create a smoother, clearer complexion.
  • Laser Titan Skin Tightening: Titan is a dual action treatment that cleanses the deep dermal layer of the skin and kills bacteria as well as tightens the skin, starting below the surface.  

Note: These treatments can be performed on any area of the body. For brides, depending on dress style, this is a great options to treat skin imperfections on your neck, chest, arms and back.

Peels + Facials

If you are looking for a less intense, more topically focused skincare solution, facial and peels are an extremely effective choice. Peels work to strip away dead skin cells and increasing cell turnover, giving you refreshed, new skin. Facials are great for moisturizing, replumping and brightening up your complexion.

  • Leah Chavie Pro Peel: This treatment is a custom glycolic peel designed to increase cell turnover. Glycolic acid stimulates natural collagen production, diminishes fine lines and wrinkles, reforms skin’s texture and brightens the complexion leaving you with a dewy glow. You should expect 30-75% to peel.
  • Leah Chavie Signature Facial: This facial focuses on balancing the skin tone with an emphasis on extraction. If you have random blemishes that have disrupted your complexion this is a great choice to give your skin a reset.
  • CryoStem Signature Facial: This signature treatment utilizes live bovine stem cells to heal the skin. Stem cells are excellent for treating scars, burns, acne, texture, skin hydration, hyperpigmentation, firming the skin and hair growth stimulation. Your skin will appear dewey and renewed.
  • Dermaplaning: This simple and safe procedure exfoliates your epidermis and eliminates tiny vellus hairs (peach fuzz.) It makes your skin beautifully smooth (the perfect canvas for wedding-day makeup!)

Body + Wellness

Every bride wants to look her best for her wedding day. Many people adapt a new workout routine or diet which are effective and healthy solutions. Introducing detoxification treatments into your routine helps to rid your body of any toxin build up and truly makes you feel amazing.

  • Thermojet Infrared Body Wrap: This full body wrap works to burn calories, reduce the appearance of cellulite, and aids in lymphatic drainage. This is a great treatment for brides to be aiming to look (and feel) their best.

Pt. III: Your At Home Skin Regimen

Treatments and facials are a necessary part of your skincare regimen, however, your daily skincare routine plays a big role in what your skin looks like and how it heals. There are four steps that everyone should include in their skin routine:

  1. Cleanse
  2. Tone
  3. Treat/Correct/Prevent
  4. Hydrate and Protect

Cleanse: Cleansing your skin should be a part of your everyday skincare routine. Clean your pores of debris and prevent buildup to decrease the chances of breakouts.

Tone: Toners soothe, nourish and hydrate the skin while restoring the PH Balance. Your skin’s PH (potential hydrogen) is a measure of how much acid is present in the skin.

Treat/Correct/Prevent: This is the step in your skincare regimen where you heal your skin imperfections with specific treatments. If you are unsure of what treatment would work best for your skin issue or your skin type, schedule a consultation! This way you can have a guided plan of treatments for your skin.

Hydrate and Protect: Hydration and protection are crucial to maintaining clear, glowing skin. Make sure you have a good moisturizer and SPF!

Pt. IV: DIY

  • Depuff Eyes: Jade roller or ice roller in the in the morning (keep in the refrigerator or freezer!) Roll upward and outward, flushing the fluid out.
  • Epsom Salt Baths: Epsom Salt is wonderful for detoxification and soothing skin. It can soften dry skin and exfoliate away dead skin cells while reducing stress.
  • Lavender on Your Pillow: Lavender is an aromatic that has calming and soothing properties to help you relax and reduce stress. Rub a few drops of lavender essential oil between your palms and then smooth over your pillow before going to bed for a peaceful rest.
  • Shower with Orange + Lemon Oils: Start your big day feeling refreshed! Incorporating citrus aromatics into your morning cleanse helps boost your mood and calm your nerves.

Ask Leah: IPL

What does IPL stand for?

IPL stands for Intense Pulsed Light and is also often referred to as a “photo facial.” It’s a light based therapy that targets pigmentation both brown (sun damage) and redness (flushing of the skin).

Where can IPL treatments be performed:

IPL can be performed on the entire body.

How often should you get IPL Treatments?

This treatment is best in a series, usually done 2 weeks apart for the best results.

How does IPL work?

The light therapy targets the pigment of damaged cells . We pulse the light/heat all over desired areas to create an superficial injury to the surface and help regenerate the cells. After treatment, the skin pigment can appear darker initially because the effects of the light/heat . This is a good thing as it will usually look worse before it looks better.

How long before you see results?

Sometimes the pigment can look like a scab or coffee grounds on the skin before it falls off or fades. This process can take a week or so to happen before the skin looks brighter, tighter and smoother.

When is the best time to have IPL treatments?

Winter and spring are both great times of year to try this treatment as we are not getting exposure to a strong UVA/UVB rays .

Ask Leah: How Diet Effects Your Skin

The skin is the largest organ in the body and it is affected by many factors like our diet, hormones genetics and lifestyle.

Below we take a closer look at each factor:

  • Diet- the kinds of food a person habitually eats.
  • Hormones-a regulatory substance produced in an organism and transported in tissue fluids such as blood or sap to stimulate specific cells or tissues into action.
  • Lifestyle-the way in which you live your life. Good lifestyle practices include getting 8 hours of sleep, hitting the gym and limiting caffeine intake.
  • Genetics-heredity and variation of inherited characteristics.

In this blog post, I want to take a deeper dive on diet as it relates to skincare. I am not a nutritionist or therapist, but have I a lot of personal experience understanding what and why things happen to my body according to my diet.

Common dietary restrictions of healthy skin:

Some of the most common dietary restrictions for better skin are no gluten, no dairy and no sugar.

Let’s do a quick update on what those restrictions look like:

  • Dairy: dairy cows are injected with artificial hormones which could affect the milk. In combination with processed sugars and refined foods, dairy can affect the insulin levels in your body and makes you more prone to breaking out.
  • Gluten: gluten is the substance that is president in cereal, grains barley and rye. It can affect your digestive system as well as contribute to eczema psoriasis acne and chronic dry skin.
  • Sugar: when we eat too much refined sugar it creates an insulin spike causing inflammation which is harmful to our joints, muscles, stomach and our skin

It’s important to understand that your skin changes daily based on all of the factors above and MORE. I encourage you to get to know your body inside and out and love it for the amazing vessel that it is!

Ask Leah: The Essential Skincare Steps

leah chavie essential skincare

My mother encourage proper hygiene and skincare ever since I could remember. She had an extreme case of rosacea and so did my brother Noel, causing them to make frequent visits to the Mayo Clinic.

My first department store visit was to the Clinque counter when I was 10 years old . My mother wanted to teach me prevention and ensure I was educated on the how to use the skincare line recommend for me. I was so excited to take home all the steps in the skincare line and for the free gift. From that moment on I was a skincare junkie!

Here are the essential skincare steps I swear by:

  1. Cleanse: clearing the pores of debris prevents buildup and decreases chances of breakouts.
  2. Tone: toning helps soothe, nourish and hydrate the skin while restoring the pH. pH stands for “potential hydrogen” and is a scale used to rank acidity and the amount of hydrogen in the skin.
  3. Treat, correct & prevent.
  4. Hydrate and protect.

I have so much to say about each step that I am thinking of doing a dedicated blog post for each! Leave us a comment below if you’re interested and we’ll make it happen!

Shop my favorite skincare sets:

Ask Leah: Laser Hair Reduction

The laser hair reduction process takes time and patience. From head to toe we can reduce your returning hair growth with each visit by 20% .

The laser is attracted to the pigment (color) in the hair follicle. The laser energy targets the follicle to illuminate or slow the growth of the hair. The darker and coarser the hair the better the result.

Her are some commonly asked questions…

Does it hurt?

It is not fluff n’ love but it is quick and efficient! My Cutera Laser has a cool glide tip to protect and pre-chill the skin.

How long does the benefit last?

The more you are compliant with your specific guidelines the better .

Are there any side effects?


It is usually quick, effective with minimal discomfort. The lip does hurt so numbing or ice is always and option. With any elective service you can have a reaction, that’s why it is important you do a consultation with us prior.

Do hormones (menstrual cycle) effect pain and hair growth ?
Yes! Our estrogen and progesterone fluctuate during our cycle this can increase the pain and hormones can effect the growth of hair .

Can laser hair removal increase hair growth initially? 

Yes I can I can bring up dormant hairs and hair follicles. This is good as it will aid in reduction all around.

What type of laser do you use?

I use Cutera an American-made laser and I was certified in 2004 at MN Vascular Center . This laser is a 1064 Yag wavelength which means I can do laser hair reduction on any ethnicity from Fitzpatrick 1-6 (a scale used to measure skin color and tone).

What is the best time of year to start your reduction:
Now !

How I Became a Skincare Expert

I’ve loved all things beauty since I was a little girl. My best friend had one of those big Barbie heads, and I loved applying makeup on her. Once, I accidentally cut her hair off when I was experimenting with what I thought were the latest and greatest hair trends of the 80s (Sorry, Nikki, that was me!) Even though we were playing with dolls, the relationships were always the most important part to me. From a young age, I was always trying to make people feel comfortable, smile and laugh.

I have never been shy, and when I started working at Rocco Altobelli, a concept salon, at age 15, I loved going to work every day at the training academy. It was about so much more than technical skills. We took etiquette classes and learned about voice inflection and verbiage, so that we wouldn’t just be great at what we did, but also polished professionals. I was like a sponge, absorbing any and all knowledge that was available to me. I quickly worked my way up to a management position, where I stayed for seven years.

In my early twenties, I attended aesthetic school and massage school, then started working for the Day Spa in Minnesota. Shortly after turning 30 I took my next step on my career path and accepted a position with Jane Iredale Mineral Cosmetics. This led me, a single girl from Minnesota and my Bichon Frise, Sparky, to the beautiful city of Chicago, where I’ve been ever since.

It was intimidating at first because I had a lot of territory to cover—basically all of Illinois up to Kohler Water Spa. I had to learn my way around, figuratively and literally, real quick (thank you, Garmin). Once I got into the swing of things, I started participating in trade shows and educational seminars all over the country. I met Envy Medical, the creators of Silk Peel Dermalinfusion systems, at a trade show in LA and started supporting the Silk Peel through education and sales. That role opened doors to countless opportunities, connecting me to doctors and Med Spas, and fueled my passion for education.

Through years of endless product obsession and a fearlessness to try any service, I became my own guinea pig. I have experienced a LOT and enjoy sharing what I have learned, whether the results were good, bad, or amazing! I strive to understand the hows and whys of every treatment and product, and I love to share knowledge, educate and create discussions around our skin.

My passion and expertise came to fruition when I opened my own spa, Leah Chavie Skincare Boutique in 2010.

The journey I have been on has allowed me to gain expertise and hands-on knowledge in so many different facets of the health and beauty industries. I am proud that each experience, challenge and mentor I have encountered has taught me something that I can now apply to my own business.

In my continuous quest for knowledge, I am constantly researching and educating myself. My clients know I buy and try everything on myself before sharing it with them. Being in this industry, I am obsessed with seeking out new products and services to try and understanding if, how, and why these items work so I can provide the best guidance to my clients.

My passion is continuously learning and sharing that knowledge with the world. At nearly 44 years old, I’ve learned when in comes to health and beauty, less is more—except for learning and growing along with my clients. I hold myself to the highest standards because nothing is more important than these relationships.

Aesthetics is a partnership between you and your professional. It’s a journey you take together in which education, communication, and trust are the key stepping stones, so make sure you’re in the hands of an expert—even if they once gave Barbie a bad haircut.

#myskinismysin

LC

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