Gloria Martel, author and speaker, is a practitioner of naturopathy and reflexology, as well as a licensed cosmetician and esthetician.
I have fond memories, as a little girl on a rural farm, watching my maternal grandmother and mom clean their face each evening with simple natural products. It was a calming time. They massaged their facial muscles to relieve tension and smooth out expression lines. Now I’m thinking they were doing some face exercises. I was learning by example how to take care of myself.
As a teenager my interest in skin care grew. Aside from daily cleansing, mom would tell me to stay out of the sun. That it would damage my skin and I would end up looking like an old sea captain with prematurely dry, wrinkled skin. She helped me choose cosmetics to keep my skin healthy, while discouraging the use of make-up, except lipstick and a little cheek color.
Often times when Mom’s girl friends were visiting, they complained about lines and slightly sagging skin; how wrinkles were making them look and feel older.
It seemed obvious to me that certain expressions were contributing to creating those deep lines between their eyebrows. In front of the mirror I copied their expression to make the same lines between my eyebrows. Yep! They made me look worried and older. When I moved my muscles in the opposite direction my skin was smooth, unlined. That was it. At the time I was unaware I had just developed my first face exercise. And I practiced it from then on. It became second nature like breathing, without effort. I kept expanding my interest and research, wanting to know how to keep our skin looking its best as long as we could.
As I was continuing my education as an esthetician the industry was exploding with exotic new cosmetics, machines, and some wonderful scientific technology. We all eagerly tried new cosmetics and techniques, but I’m sure you can think of at least one thing you will never try or use again. A good reason many of us are coming full circle, incorporating any new discoveries that work into our tried and true simple regimen. Also, scheduling time for meditation, prayer or peaceful music helps refresh body and mind.
Start your skin care regimen as early as possible. That has proven to be a benefit for me and others. Mothers have brought daughters as young as 5 into my salon to start their skin care training.
As my modeling coach in New York used to say, “Never change anything on your face with surgery that you can correct with make-up.” Never be afraid to show your true self. Great beauties have often been the ones who have turned an imperfection into an asset.
To learn more about Gloria, read previously published magazine articles and interviews on our MEDIA page.