Tag Archive | colorado

The 2016 Christmas Sock Drive is On!

The Total Image Design staff and clients are collecting new adult sized socks to donate to Urban Peak, a local shelter for young men and women from 14 to 21 years of age.img_4147

The sock drive takes place all through the holidays. It seems like a small gift to give but the comfort the new socks can bring would warm your heart and does warm the feet of many young people who are working to improve their lives. img_4144

Total Image Design has been collecting socks for those in need for the last 20 years and we invite you to help Total Image Design meet that need once again. New socks can be dropped off at the salon any time during working hours. New socks of any kind are welcomed and will be appreciated! If you don’t have time to shop for socks you can stop by and donate money and the Total Image Design staff will do the shopping for you!

Thank you to all who donate! Happy Holidays to you and yours!

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Winter hair care, another way of taking care of yourself!

Winter hair care in Colorado

So, it’s winter, should you do anything different for your hair? Well, the environment is different for your hair in winter so it makes sense that the care should be different as well.
Just like your skin and nails, the indoor heating, lack of humidity and the cold can detrimental and damaging to your hair. Mostly you efforts should be toward trying to keep your hair from being damaged.

Some of the basic rules apply for your hair that applies to your skin.
Avoiding hot water during baths and showering, using warm water instead.
Limit your use of heated tools on your hair such as a blow dryers and curling irons. And if you do use heated tools use a leave in conditioner before using the item on your hair.
Protect you hair from the cold, wind and sun by wearing a scarf, hat or cap to protect your hair. Make sure that it’s not so tight where it will restrict circulation in your scalp of course.
Use a good quality conditioner to protect your hair and moisturizing products that “replenish” your hair.
Avoid using hair styling products with alcohol which dries out hair, these would be products like gels, hair sprays and mousse.

Do your best not go outside when your hair is wet and the temperatures are freezing, you risk breakage. Your hair will freeze if it’s cold enough outside and could actually break. Be gentle when shampooing and conditioning. Don’t use excessive force rubbing your hair, remember hair is most vulnerable when wet and that can be another cause of breakage.

There are year round tips to hair care that should be paid particular attention to in the winter. Once you have your hair washed and moist, lock in the moisture by rinsing your hair with cold water; this also gives your hair an extra shine.
All the normal things that make you a healthier person will make your hair healthier as well.
Eating well, getting enough sleep, avoiding stress or finding ways to deal with stress better at least.
Use quality brushes/combs with widely spaced bristles/teeth and smooth tips. Sharp tooth combs can damage your hair, cause split ends, and scratch your scalp. Using brushes whose bristles are made from natural animal hairs are softer and more flexible, which means less damage will be done to your hair.

Avoid using plastic brushes/combs which create static electricity which is worse in the winter time already.
Ask your hairdresser what types of shampoos and conditioners match your hair type and use the correct products.

It is important to wash your hair; shampooing removes dirt, dead skin cells, hair oils, any hair products you may put into your hair, but do it only as often as you need to for your hair type and situation. Using a conditioner after shampooing will moisturize your hair, give it extra protection, add shine, reduce static, and makes it easier to untangle. Using a quality “leave in” conditioner will help hydrate and protect your hair. A leave in conditioner on your hair is about the same as using a moisturizer on your skin. Also be sure to keep your brushes and combs clean, wash them weekly using soap or shampoo.

Winter drying can show up as dandruff. If you see dandruff there are ways that you can control and limit dandruff but there is no real cure for it and once you get it you may continue to have it. If you have only a mild case of dandruff, shampooing your hair with a regular shampoo daily or twice a day will usually do the trick. If your standard shampoo doesn’t get rid of your dandruff, buy an anti-dandruff shampoo and your dandruff condition should improve significantly in a couple of weeks. Be sure to still use you conditioner to protect and moisturize your hair.

Massaging the scalp can help stimulate the nerves and blood vessels beneath the skin while calming muscle tension around the head, leading to healthier hair. Use only your finger tips to massage, not your finger nails. Scalp massage can pull natural moisturizers out of the pores and onto your scalp, it also can draw those natural oils into the hair. This can leave your hair shiny, soft and strong.

Another thing that you would use to help your skin that will also help your hair is the use of a humidifier. And remember, water, protein, biotin, a vitamin B complex, vitamins A, B6, B12, C, copper, iron, omega 3 fatty acids, zinc, calcium, folic acid, and magnesium all play a part in maintaining a healthy scalp, skin, and hair.

Remember to see your hairdresser regularly and have your split ends trimmed too. This helps keep static down and can lessen tangles which helps keep breakage from occurring. Avoid harsh and/or frequent brushing, Gentle combing or brushing of your hair will help break up oils that clog your pores and will contribute to keeping your hair and scalp healthy.

Our hair is a highly visible part of our image and our vitality.
See us here at Total Image Design to be sure your hair care is up to date
and your hair is the best it can be.
You are worth it, take care of yourself!

Nailing down taking care of yourself!

Let’s start 2012 with more of caring for yourself! We’ll start with your finger nails ( and hope that your will be kind enough to yourself to include your toenails! ).

To understand how to take care of your nails, it helps to know what a nail is. Finger nails and toe nails both are composed of a nail bed and a nail plate. The nail bed is the soft area of skin beneath the nail plate, which is the hard surface of the nail. Cells at the bottom of the nail bed make up the nail matrix and produce layers of a protein called keratin — keratin builds the nail plate and anchors it to the nail bed.
Nails grow at an average rate of about 0.004 inches (0.1 millimeters) per day or 0.08 to 0.12 inches (2 to 3 millimeters) a month , pretty slow in my opinion!

Seeing your nail technician regularly can help keep your nails healthy and beautiful. Your nail technician can give you advice on things to do at home in between manicures to help you care for your nails and keep them growing and strong. When you are taking care of your fingernails it will contribute to taking care if your hands too.

It’s amazing how good having healthy nails and well manicured nails can make you feel. Not only that, people look at your hands and your hands can say a lot about you. That being said, beautiful, well cared for hands and nails do contribute to your “total image”.

I have a friend who always asked me why I took the time to paint my nails and go to the salon when they ( the nails ) would just get messed up and broken at work. At the time we both worked at a job that was very hard on our hands and nails. I told her she should give it a try and she would discover why in a very short time.
Thus I introduced her to the pleasures of having pretty though hard working hands. I taught her that taking care of her hands and nails gave her a more positive feeling at work and also when not at work and it after she tried it, it proved to her how much confidence it can give you when you have well manicured nails.

There is so much value in the small things we do for ourselves and for me taking care of my hands and nails and getting a manicure was both relaxing and reviving. I appreciated seeing my hands in the best condition possible and I was “perked up” with the pretty colors and designs I could get. If you think about it, your hands are one of the parts of you that are constantly visible to you! Even babies enjoy watching their own hands, our hands and the hands of others! So, if you see your hands as tired and worn and unhealthy, what do you think that is going to project to your subconscious and self image? I don’t imagine it will be positive and inspirational, do you? Not much different really than looking in the mirror and seeing a tired, worn, unhealthy reflection there either. Our hands are in front of us each and every day and night. Our hands can represent so much to others and certainly to ourselves as well.
I learned that having pretty, well cared for nails and hands affected so many aspects of my daily life, my work, my relationships and my overall health. I know that taking care of my hands and nails is a benefit that I should not neglect. My friend now goes to the salon even more than I do and she loves it! She tells me constantly how much it has helped her overall attitude and she can’t believe that such a little thing can make such a big difference to her!
As stated in a previous post, I feel that people should take care of themselves and that it benefits those around us as well. Don’t let anybody tell you it’s selfish, it’s not, it’s just sensible and beneficial to our overall health and happiness to take proper care of ourselves. 

Healthy fingernails are smooth, without pits, indentations or grooves. They’re uniform in color and consistency and free of spots or discoloration. Sometimes fingernails can develop harmless vertical ridges that run from the cuticle to the tip of the nail. Vertical ridges tend to become more prominent with age. Fingernails can also develop white lines or spots due to injury, but these eventually grow out with the nail. When I was a young girl we used to say that for each one of those little white marks you got on your nails you had a secret admirer! We checked regularly!

More seriously, your nails can also be a significant indicator of your health. Although typically, they’re not the first symptom you notice when you’ve got something going on but unhealthy nails can signal serious health problems.
Possible signs of an underlying health problem: White nails, Yellow nails, pitting, dark lines on the nail bed, a dark band at the tip of each nail, indentations across the nail, clubbing ( tips of the fingers enlarge and the nail grows down around them ) or spoon nails. Separation that happens without an injury can be a fungus or sometimes it can be caused by a drug or chemical, even some nail products ( this is a good reason to ask your nail technician to help you choose products safe for you and your nails ).
If you have any nail discoloration or abnormal nail growth or damage it would be prudent to talk to your doctor about it. Your nail technician can help you care for your nails but they are not there to diagnose or treat health problems so don’t ask them to or expect them to. ( The Mayo Clinic has a great website that also has photographs of these conditions to help you determine if you may need to seek medical help ).

Although unsanitary, nail biting isn’t likely to cause long-term nail damage. Nail biting isn’t without risks, however. It can contribute to skin infections, aggravate existing conditions of the nail bed and even increase the risk of colds and other infections by encouraging the spread of germs from the nails and fingers to the lips and mouth. Compulsive nail biting can be a sign of an underlying mental health condition, such as anxiety or an impulse control disorder.
There are things you can do to try and alleviate nail biting. Of course you can try to notice what triggers the nail biting and try to avoid those situations, such as boredom or anxiety or stress. Keeping your nails neatly trimmed or manicured and seeing your nail technician regularly can help too. An alternate activity  such as simply chewing gum can possibly help. To prevent nail biting, try having your nail technician apply acrylic nails. Nail biters have a hard time gnawing through tough (and pretty) acrylic nails.

One of the biggest things to do for the care of your nails is to keep your fingernails dry and clean. Repeated or prolonged contact with water can contribute to poor condition. If you can, wear cotton-lined rubber gloves when washing dishes, cleaning or using harsh chemicals.
You can also prevent nail damage if don’t use your fingernails as tools to pick, poke or pry things.

When you use hand lotion, rub the lotion into your fingernails and cuticles, too. Avoid harsh nail care products and see your nail technician for care regularly.

On to the subject of acrylic nails. You might ask, are they safe for my nails? Well, yes, they generally are safe if properly applied and taken care of. The biggest risk is that of infection. Sometimes a gap can develop between the acrylic nail and the natural nail. As an example, if the acrylic nail is bumped or jarred, it may separate from the natural nail. This gap provides a moist, warm environment in which bacteria and fungi can grow. An infection may also occur if an acrylic nail is left in place for prolonged periods. ( Rarely, a person can have an allergic reaction (contact dermatitis) to components of acrylic nails or the adhesives used to apply them. )

Our nails require us to eat a good diet as does the rest of our body. For healthy hair and nails we need protein, calcium, and B vitamins. Vitamin B is needed for strengthening of hair and nails, while vitamin B12 also strengthens while promoting normal nail growth and healthy coloring. Vitamin C is another necessary vitamin for our health. Adequate intake can help prevent hang nails and swelling of nail tissue. A result of iron or zinc deficiency can be the occurrence of white lines on our nails. Some research suggests that the nutritional supplement biotin might help strengthen weak or brittle fingernails. In addition, omega-3 essential fats provide the fatty acids your nails need to stay strong and prevent splitting.

Here’s an important fact: Men get manicures too! The process is the same, shaping, cuticle cleaning and  nail buffing. Many men opt for no polish, while others ask for a clear matte polish or buffing until the nail shines. One manicurist when asked said that men most often get manicures because they like to look well-groomed. Once men are hooked on manicures, she said, they visit more often than women.

Not everyone sees the point of sitting in a salon and devoting an hour or so to their nails, but you and I know it’s worth it for our self esteem, our health, our “total image” and frankly for our pleasure!
Whether you wear them short and unpolished or use them to express your personality by adorning them with color and jewels, your nails and their health are important, so don’t neglect them or yourself!

The nail tech/manicurist at Total Image Design is Ginger. Give her a call for your next manicure, you’ll be glad you did!

( 719 ) 964-7718

Winter skin care in Colorado

The cold Colorado winter season can bring more than just a rosy glow to the cheeks.It can also bring dryness to your skin. For some people, the problem is worse and your skin can get so dry it results in flaking, cracking, even eczema (in which the skin becomes inflamed). Here in Colorado we already have an arid climate and it gets even more so in the winter time.

When you turn the heat on indoors, the skin starts to dry out as well. It doesn’t matter if you heat your home using oil, wood, or electricity. Your skin can get dryer from it.

Ideally if you can you should consider going to an esthetician or dermatologist. Even once is a good investment. Such a specialist can analyze your skin type, troubleshoot your current skin care regimen, and give you advice on the skin care products you should be using.

Many experts advise changing you winter skin care products. For the Colorado winter especially find an “ointment” moisturizer that’s oil-based, rather than water-based, as the oil will create a protective layer on the skin that retains more moisture than a cream or lotion.
Choose your oils wisely because not all oils are appropriate for the face. Look for “nonclogging” oils, like avocado oil, mineral oil, primrose oil, or almond oil. Shea oil — or butter — is not considered a good choice because it can clog facial pores. You can also look for lotions containing “humectants,” a class of substances that attract moisture to your skin. These would include glycerine, sorbitol, and alpha-hydroxy acids.

If you are going outside you need to remember that the winter sun along with snow glare can still damage and dry your skin. Try applying a broad-spectrum sunscreen to your face and your hands especially about 30 minutes before going outside. Reapply frequently if you stay outside a long time and even more so if you are going hiking or skiing.

Another tool for skin care is using humidifiers. Humidifiers get more moisture in the air, which helps prevent your skin from drying out. Place several small humidifiers throughout your home; they help disperse the moisture more evenly. They also keep the static electricity down which helps not only your skin but also your hair and who wouldn’t love to cut down on those irritating electric shocks from touching things around the house. Before I started using a humidifier even the house plants were shocking me every chance they got as I passed by and accidentally touched a leaf! ( The plants loved the added humidity in winter too! Maybe that’s why they stopped picking on me! ) If you can’t afford several humidifiers there are a myriad ways of adding moisture to the air. Setting decorative bowls of water around or vases with water and flowers will add moisture as they evaporate and add beauty too. When you are home you can put a kettle on to simmer or you can put a large pot of water on the stove at a low setting and throw in spices and an apple or orange. Adds humidity and smells good, too, even a crock pot on low without it’s lid will work great ( make sure there is no cord hanging for safety ). Be sure to keep an eye on simmering pots and refill the water as needed. At night when you sleep or when you are gone you simply turn off the stove and the water will still evaporate helping the humidity level in the house. Of course if you have a wood burning stove a cast iron kettle on top is a must, so Colorado too!

We are all probably guilty of soaking in a wonderfully hot bath after being outside in the cold. It feels great after skiing, hiking or just working out in the cold. But the intense heat of a hot shower or bath actually breaks down the lipid barriers in our skin, which can lead to a loss of moisture. Sorry, but you’re better off with just warm water and staying in the water a shorter amount of time. A warm bath with oatmeal or baking soda, can help relieve skin that is so dry it has become itchy and so can periodically reapplying your moisturizer. After bathing or showering, quickly and gently pat the skin partially dry with a towel,do not rub!. Within three minutes of getting out of the water apply a moisturizer.

This is a good time of year to get in the habit of moisturizing your hands every time you wash them. Place a pump bottle of moisturizer right next to the sink making it easier to remember and convenient. Be sure there is one by the kitchen sink as well as the bathroom sink.

Lips retain even less moisture than other parts of the body, so they tend to dry out more quickly.                                        
They lack the oil glands the face has for lubrication, so additional moisturizing is a major need for them in the cold winter months. So don’t forget your lip moisturizers and nourishing lip balms to protect them!

It is a myth that drinking more water can help with dry skin. You definitely should drink plenty of water but for other health reasons and remember that here in Colorado we tend to dehydrate faster and don’t realize it before it’s too late to avert it. What does help your skin from the inside is taking omega-3 fish oil pills.  People who took fish oil pills in a study reported in Allure magazine, saw significant results within a few weeks. You can usually see your skin, hair and nails improve markedly within six weeks or so. These nutrients also do much more for our health so they should be considered year round too.

Here is another suggestion to add fun to your skin care, ask that significant other to apply some of that lotion all over and in those places where it’s so hard for you to reach. And be sure to return the favor to them! Everybody wants to be soft and smooth and cuddly!
So chase away any winter blues and the dry skin that comes with it by taking care of your skin , your lips and pamper yourself with wonderful skin care products and you will be glad you did!