Sun’s out!

It’s that time of the year again, when the sun shines bright, temperature rises to 80s and 90s and the pool is officially open.


But, with the pool season, comes the sun. And we know applying sunscreen is not on the forefront of all our minds. but it should be. Not only on this season. A good dermatologist will recommend you wearing sunscreen every day. That’s right: 365 days of sunscreen.

Some may find a bit too much, some don’t see a need. Some think sunscreen is a “summer thing”. We wish it was. But the damages done by the sun come at all times: winter, spring, summer or fall.

We probably just remember about it most on the Summer time because we actually leave the house with the intent of soaking up the rays.The warm, cozy, but very damaging rays.

But as we stumbled upon this post from Marie Claire we felt the need to share it with you. How is it that we know so much about the importance of sunscreen, but still deadly skin cancer cases have doubled over the last three decades?!

Please ready carefully, consider taking steps to avoid the rays, and add sunscreen to your daily routine. We’ve blogged about a few options here. So please, please check it out.

Stay safe!

The real price of products

If there’s one thing we know is that “no 2 products are the same”. That goes for high end and drug stores brands. People always ask us what the difference between our products and the ones at drugstores is:

We only carry products we are passionate about in our salon, be it skincare, makeup or hair. Our products have great quality ingredients, and are created by people who are equally passionate about your health and the results their products deliver.

True, our products cost more than your average shampoo or eyeshadow at the drugstore. There is a reason for that, believe it or not.

I know we always refer to Skin Deep’s site, but simply type your brand and see for yourself. Your $3 eyeshadow from the drugstore is very cheap, and does the job. We believe in that too. But what else is it doing for you?

It’s no secret that there are multiple harmful chemicals in most brands. Regulations are not as tough for cosmetics as they are for drugs and food. You can check it herehere and here for more information about all the harmful chemicals you add to your body when you use your $3 eyeshadow, or your nail polish.

We hope these statistics and links helped you to get a little more acquainted with your own products. Do learn the ingredients, the chemicals and effects it may have on you and your overall health. We believe in our clients looking their best inside and out. And that means standing behind brands that do not use these harmful ingredients!

The 5 minute face

If there’s one thing most people would like to have more of, it’s time. With more time we can do everything: clean the house, exercise, sleep!, work, finish that last page of the book. Possibilities are endless.


More and more people have been navigating towards a hassle free makeup routine. One that will make you look presentable and put together, but that will still allow you to hit the snooze button on your alarm, or will allow you to get ready at a minute’s notice.

We figured we could help out, sharing with you our own 5 minute face.


1// Moisturize

Depending on your skin type and needs you may need more than this, but most people could double up their primer as a moisturizer. With ingredients such as Grapefruit, orange and apple extract as well as aloe vera, Smooth Affair is the perfect candidate. It has anti-aging properties that even skin tone, minimize the appearance of pores and increase luminosity.



2// Protect

Sunscreen is a must on every person’s routine. No matter what your skin tone you have. If you want to be faster, you can opt for Dream Tint, a Tinted Moisturizer with SPF15. If you need more than that, add your own liquid sunscreen then.



3// Cover

This step depends on how much coverage you prefer. We prefer a shearer application, so we turn into the Liquid Minerals foundation. It’s lightweight, but still powerful enough to cover dark spots.


If you need more coverage, opt for the Glow Time BB Cream, which also contains a SPF 25.b2ap3_thumbnail_JI_GlowTime.jpg

4// Add color

This step is what takes some time, usually. But there are a few products that may cut your time in half. Opt for double duty products, such as the Just Kissed lip and cheek stain. They can be applied, as the name says, on both lips and cheeks and will last you the whole day!


For the eyes, opt for something fast like the Eye Shere. They can be used on their own (just add them to your lid and blend towards the eyebrows) or as a base, for days where you’re not in a rush. We absolutely love the Brown and the Bronze.


For mascara, we love the Longest LashThickening and Lenghtening Mascara. For daytime we usually choose brown (navy is also amazing!), but we bump it up to black for night outs.



5// Brows

A lot of people skip this step – but we would not! You don’t have to spend hours fixing them, but they deserve a nice coat of color to stand out. For that opt for the PureBrow Gels. If they are full enough you can just use the clear to tame them, or opt for the Blonde or Brunette, to tame and fill in one swipe.



There you have it! Of course if your skin needs a lot more coverage for spots, or acne, then just add, or remove, products according to your preference.


What are your 5 minute face products?


*All images used are from Jane Iredale’s website.

Skin strategies for every age

On the March 2015 edition of Real Simple magazine, they go over the best anti-aging strategies for your skin at every age.

We liked the article so much we thought of sharing it with you! So of course, all credits go to their amazing team as well as the original writer Genevieve Monsma.

According to the article, less is sometimes more with your skin. Having an extensive and complicated routine is the #1 reason why people don’t follow through with it. Keep it simple, but invest in good products – that’s the secret of a great skin care regimen.

They also give you breakdown of what treatments/products you should reach to depending on your age. So we will give you an abbreviated version.


– Your skin has mostly calmed down from all teenage hormone unbalanced, so most won’t have too many problems;

– Your skin still produces plenty of collagen, and any sun damage is still well concealed under your skin’s surface;

– Keep your routine basic, start using anti-aging products as a prevention, and avoid anything that causes damage to the skin: smoking, not washing your face and taking off your makeup, sun.

– Treatments recommended are seasonal facials.



– Focus on preventing fine lines and discoloration due to sun damage;

– Invest in deep cleaning products that can balance your oil production;

– Treatments recommended are chemical peels and botox depending on how accentuated your fine lines are.



– Sun damage will start breaking through the surface of your skin, in the form of brown spots;

– Your sebum production usually declines, so keep your cleanser for only nighttime;

– Anti-aging prevention is still key;

– Treatments recommended are botox/dysport for any existing lines, as well as fillers when needed.



– This is when the collagen production slows down, and skin can start looking saggy;

– The majority of women will start experience menopause or peri-menopause, which has an impact on the skin;

– Load up on products that will boost hydration and collagen production;

– Treatments recommended are laser resurfacing treatments and fraxel laser.



– Your skin care routine shouldn’t change too much;

– Some women notice more sensitivity on their skin;

– Hydrate, Firm and Treat your discoloration are your top concerns;


We no longer provide Spa Services here at Brush Strokes, but we highly recommend our business partners Spa Noa, here in Reston. They would love to take care of you and any skin care concerns you may have.



iS Clinical Foaming Enzyme Treatment

Happy Thursday, everyone!


Summer is here, and things have been crazy busy at the salon. We have new products, new services, Eufora came out with their newest line, and we added more facials to our menu!

One of them is the Foaming Enzyme Treatment Facial!

The Foaming Enzyme treatment is based on iS Clinical beloved FiSzz Facial, and has the same effervescent properties to smooth, brighten and purify your skin. It delivers immediate and long lasting results, and the treatment is about 45 minutes long.


iS Clinical is known for their 4-step skin care products: Cleanse, Treat, Hydrate & Protect. This system is used in all aspects of skin maintenance, including their facials. Last week we had the pleasure of receiving Thomas Yvanauskas, our skin care specialist in the salon. He demonstrated iS Clinical’s Foaming Enzyme Treatment Facial.

The Facial starts by thoroughly cleansing your face with their Cleansing Complex, – a great source of salicylic acid. Next, we treat the skin with a masque – applied and massaged onto the skin. The type of masque varies depending on what concerns the guest expresses. Some are looking for a firming masque, whereas others want a calming masque to aid them with their skin condition.

The next step is the Foaming Enzyme Treatment, which works wonders on resurfacing your skin, breaking through dead skin cells and making way for beautiful, smooth, radiant looking skin.

It’s always important to moisturize and protect your skin from the harmful UVA/UVB rays, so the Facial ends with a nice layering of Reparative Moisturizer and Sunscreen.

Immediately after the facial we could see great skin improvement. It was brighter, smoother, and with a lot more hydration and plumpness. It is always recommended that you follow up by using great products on your daily skin care routine.


Stay tuned for great facial deals on our salon, and call us anytime to make your appointment!



Fall Skin Care Changes

It happens to most of us: come summer, your skin gets oilier and you switch into a lighter moisturizer. And with the change of season, it’s time to change it back yet again.

For Fall and Winter months, try switching to a heavier, more emollient moisturizer. And do not forget about the SPF. Just because you can’t really see or feel much of the sun it does not mean it’s not impacting your skin with UVA/UVB rays. Protect yourself every day!


Alicia – Brush Strokes’ Master Aesthetician – recommends the iS Clinical Protective Moisturizer.


According to the label ” it’s a powerful, hydrating,anti-oxidant rich daytime moisturizer that has extreme Ozyme Protection, which is proven to help prevent skin damage. Formulated with powerful botanicals, natural vitamins, and potent anti-oxidants.” It’s great for transitioning your skin to the Fall climate change.

If you tend to get oily no matter what season, she recommends pairing the moisturizer with the iS Clinical Age Treatment Complex. But wait, don’t be fooled by its name!



It’s not only for people with mature skin. It’s actually a ” powerful formulated formula that fights breakouts, encourages skin brightening as well as combats the signs of aging. It provides immediate and long-term improvements that help to naturally hydrate the skin.”

But be certain: just because your skin is oily does not mean you don’t need a moisturizer. Sometimes oily skin produces even more oil to compensate for its dehydration. So don’t be afraid to use a heavier moisturizer: chances are your skin really needs it!

If you have any questions about your skin type or products to use, call us and schedule an appointment with Alicia!

And don’t forget about our running promotion of a 20% off of the PCA Ultra Peel with Alicia. It runs throughout the month of October only! Call and schedule yours!



Happy Thursday, everyone!

We know summer is slowly coming to an end, and as excited as we are about pumpkin lattes, new fall trends on hair/makeup and the beautiful hues of the trees, it’s always sad to say goodbye to the longer summer days.

That’s why so many of us are still planning on going on our last trips to take in as much of the warm weather as possible. And for that we have just the perfect treat.


If you’re one of the people who try their best to avoid the hassle of checking in bags, opting instead to bring a carry-on, this is perfect for you.

It was with them in mind that Eufora came out with this kit: Beauty-On-The-Go. This travel size kt includes two cult favorites from the line: Beautifying Serum and Illuminate Finishing Spray.



It gets better! The greatest part of this kit is the fact that Eufora knows each client has their favorite shampoo and conditioner, so they’re letting you choose which ones to have in your kit!

How great is that? Finally a kit that can be tailored to suit you and your hair type.


For your shampoo you can choose from the following: Hydrating, Pure Cleanse, Urgent Repair and Volumizing.

For conditioner, you can choose between: Daily Balance, Urgent Repair Treatment and Moisture Solution.

It’s a great kit, with a great bag, perfect to carry it around without worrying if your products will spill or having to buy extra travel sizes containers and forgetting which containers holds what. And plus: they won’t take that away from you in the plane. They are all travel-sizes!

And don’t forget, we will also refill all products we can, including the travel sizes, for 10% off if you bring back the empty bottles. We are firm believers of reusing the bottles and doing our share for the environment.

What do you think? Call us for prices and availability of the kits, and let us know where you’re going to enjoy the rest of summer, we’d love to know!

S is for Summer – and SPF

Today we’re taking a step back from our hair posts and focusing on our skin. After all, it needs love too, and we all want our skin to be plump, wrinkle free and clear of dark spots – no matter our age.

You might be thinking: well, summer is almost over, why talk about SPF now?

Well, truth is, as a lot of you already now, SPF should be applied daily – regardless of the season. Of course we amp up the SPF on summer, but sunscreen should be a daily step on your skin care routine!

Alicia, our aesthetician, is here to give you a few basic changes to your routine that will help prevent and even treat some of the problem areas in your skin.

“The first, and most crucial step, is to prevent sun damage. Everyone knows the importance of putting sunscreen on. Why is it then that so many people still don’t? Well, in my experience i saw people seem to think it’s a lot more complicated than it really is.”

There are ways to slowly introduce SPF into your routine without breaking the bank, or putting you behind on your schedule. iS clinical carries many products with SPF, allowing you to pick which one fits best into your lifestyle.


iS Clinical Protective Moisturizer

2 in 1, this moisturizer is hydrating, packed with antioxidants and perfect for daytime. Not only will it protect your skin from sun damage, it’ll hydrate it, minimizing the appearance of fine lines.


iS Clinical Extreme Protect SPF 30

If you’re looking for more protection, you should definitely look into this product. It has a very moisturizing formula, and not only helps to protect your skin, but it actually repairs the damage already done! It reduces redness and inflammation associated with sunburn, while delivering the most advance protection.


Eclipse SPF50+ Perfect Tint

This product comes in two shades: beige and brown. As the names suggest, beige is targeted to people with fair skin, whereas brown is perfect for Middle Eastern and African American skin tones. The product has a very light texture, absorbing quickly. Rich in antioxidants, vitamin E and paraben free, the Eclipse SPF50+ is ideal for all skin types.

Did you also know that most dermatologists recommend that you reapply your sunscreen multiple times a day? Sometimes 3-4 times! If you’re like me, you’re asking yourself: well, I already have my makeup on, so do I have to take it off and reapply the sunscreen?

Well, you definitely could, though most of us don’t have the time or patience to do that. That’s what’s really great about Jane Iredale products. Most of their powder foundations contain SPF and are approved by the Skin Cancer Society as to their sun protecting efficiency.

You can always go for a product like Powder Me Dry SPF30PA++

This handy powder comes in three shades: (from left to right) translucent, golden and tanned. While the golden and tanned deliver a beautiful glow-y bronzed look, the translucent can be worn on top of your makeup look, and won’t disturb or move your foundation, blush, etc. Just dust the powder all over your face, and voila! You’ve reapplied your SPF protection.

If you have any questions or comments feel free to give us a call! Alicia will be more than happy to answer them. And as always, leave your questions, comments, and favorite products bellow!