One should really have a healthy respect for their skin. The truth is, your skin does far more than serve as a fancy covering to make you look good. In fact, the list of job responsibilities it handles is actually quite impressive.

The Master Multi-Tasker: The way our skin looks is a direct reflection of what is happening externally and internally. It would be nice if we lived in a stress-free world, eating only pure, organic foods―but come on, life is hectic! The old adage, “we are what we eat” is more true today than ever. It’s a fact: what we eat and how we feel show up on our skin as it’s a complete reflection of what’s happening internally.

The skin is the body’s largest organ and research proves it capable of absorbing up to 60% of the ingredients in the products we apply.

Your skin is an organ of elimination, just like your kidneys, liver, and colon: Just as FYI….The lymphatic system is the part of your circulatory system that rids your body of toxins and waste. If your system becomes overloaded and polluted with toxins, your body can’t efficiently filter impurities, and skin rebels in the form of a dull, sallow, tired-looking complexion―often accompanied by fine lines, wrinkles, acne, blackheads, enlarged pores and/or the dreaded oil slick. When lymphatic circulation slows down, so does cellular turnover, which accelerates aging!

Discover the crucial roles that our skin plays:

As a water conservationist:

On average, about 55% of a woman’s total body weight is water. This means that a 130 pound woman is made up of almost 36 quarts of water. What keeps all this moisture from evaporating and escaping into the air around you is your skin. The outer layer of your skin, although it’s thinner than a single coat of paint,  is as water-tight as a plastic sheet of equal thickness. In fact, your skin is 1000 times more impermeable than the membrane of any other living organism.

As a bodyguard:

Not only does your skin shield your insides from ultraviolet radiation and other forms of physical damage, it also carries a powerful defense system that seeks out and destroys any foreign invaders that manage to get through. When you consider that every square inch of your skin can be covered with millions of micro-organisms, you can understand how vital this is.

As a communicator:

Your skin is constantly sending you the latest news from the outside world. About 45 miles of nerves connected to heat and touch sensors located in your skin are always busy relaying vital information about your physical environment.

As a maintenance worker:

When the outside temperature gets too hot, your skin is in charge of regulating your interior thermostat. It automatically turns on the sprinkler system by activating close to 200 sweat glands per square inch. This helps cools you down because the perspiration evaporating on the skin surface lowers your body temperature. When the mercury dips too low, a tiny muscle at the base of every hair on your skin contracts and makes the hair stand up. This helps trap a layer of air on the surface that insulates you from the cold.

As a waste management specialist:

Sweating does more than help regulate your body temperature. It actually takes out your garbage as well. Every day your body loses about two and a half quarts of water. A lot of this comes from your sweat glands that work overtime to rid your body of unwanted byproducts like urea and ammonia that are dissolved in your perspiration.

As a vitamin manufacturer:

Your skin houses all the necessary equipment to produce vitamin D from sunlight. Just 20-30 minutes of summer sun can help generate 10,000 IU of vitamin D that your body needs to activate over 2000 genes responsible for controlling everything from bone growth to immune function.

But there are other qualities besides versatility that make your skin truly unique. For instance, it’s sheer size alone sets it apart. Your skin generally weighs about 12% to 15% of your total body weight. That means a 150 lb. person is wrapped in roughly 20 pounds of skin. Speaking in terms of area, the average person’s skin covers approximately 18 square feet. By comparison, the second largest organ is their liver, weighing in at a little over 3 pounds.

In addition, your skin is also a dynamic organ. By dynamic I mean that it’s constantly changing. It’s always renewing itself from the bottom up. Your skin sheds somewhere in the neighborhood of 40,000 cells every minute and replaces them with other cells that rise to the surface.

It runs in the family: A family-run skincare company, Goldfaden MD, utilizes innovative natural ingredients for unmatched performance. Goldfaden MD is unique compared to other in-home skincare brands. “I have honed in on what i feel are the most important and common skincare problems and have built the range to allow consumers to address from at home and improve skin health long-term.” Dermatologist, Dr. Gary Goldfaden MD

What inspired the to start Goldfaden MD and when was the company founded?

I have always been a creative yet clinical thinker when it comes to medical solutions, so problem-solving for my patients naturally steered me toward product development. I remember developing formulas for my wife and young children as they began to encounter various skin issues—it was a genuine and instinctive passion. When I began practicing in the late 60’s, the anti-aging movement hadn’t really begun on a medical level, and most patients sought in-office procedures as the first line of defense. As I gained experience in private practice, I realized just how significant preventative at home skin care could be for my patients and how it could hopefully reduce their need for more extreme corrective measures in-office. There was a void in the skincare marketplace of products that delivered visible anti-aging benefits but that could be tolerated by sensitive, post surgical, and allergic skin types. It was clear to me that the world needed a serious yet chemically clean line they could trust, and GOLDFADEN MD would be the answer.

What did the process look like to formulate non-prescription, medical-grade skincare products?

The process starts with identifying a problem I see in office, and from there develop at home solutions and preventative measures. If brightening is the goal, for example, we want to layer potent natural actives together without adding in silicones, fillers, and irritants. The challenge is keeping the formulas clean without compromising the stability.The first product I developed was Doctors Scrub, our hero product. I started mixing various ingredients together in my office until I perfected the formula through patient trials and lab testing, which took a couple of years.

Can you tell us how Goldfaden MD’s products target specific skin concerns? How are they unique compared to other products on the market?

I have honed in on what I feel are the most important and often common skincare problems and built the range in order to allow consumers to address them at home and improve skin health long term. Superior formulations featuring naturally-derived ingredients with effective delivery systems set the GOLDFADEN MD brand apart. We couple scientific, results driven products with globally-sourced natural ingredients, bridging the “natural” and “physician” product categories at the prestige level in a way no other brand has.

What exciting things are happening with Goldfaden MD in the near future?

On a product level we are expanding The Plant Profusion line and core collection this winter with additional skus. I can’t wait to unveil them. On the business side, our rate of rapid growth is extremely exciting, and I am very proud of our team.

What is your hope for the future of the business?

I’d like to see us continue to grow as a globally recognized brand and remain the leader and best in class range within the category that we have uniquely chartered: Prestige Natural skincare formulated by a dermatologist.  With the right retail partners who share our passion and modern vision of clean beauty, we can bring GOLDFADEN MD to many more individuals here in the US and abroad.

What is the biggest challenge facing the business?

Growth at a rate of control has been top-of-mind for us since inception. Our distribution model has been very calculated and strategic over the last three years, and now we have incredible momentum. With Lisa’s marketing leadership, and strategic investments in public relations and social media communications, we have had great success controlling our messaging, earning trust and praise from international beauty media and influencers, and exciting retail partners, new markets and ultimately consumers. The next chapter is about continuing this success but on a larger scale with the right support at retail, maximizing opportunities for greatest visibility and expansion here in the US and globally.

Where do you see growth opportunities with the brand?

We have had a 40% growth year-over-year since launch and we are working hard to continue to continue on that fast track for this fiscal year and into next. With a heavy focus on retail door expansion, new product launches, online and social media initiatives, and large sample marketing partnerships, we will likely surpass our year-over-year growth for this fiscal year, which is really exciting. Working with the right retail partners greatly impacts the success of the brand and we are certainly continuing to look at both the retail landscape and shifts in consumer behaviors—namely, leveraging social media engagement–in order to hone in on the brand’s expansion and growth opportunities to allow for us to continue building upon our strong footprint within the beauty category.

Dermatologist, Dr. Gary Goldfaden MD

Diving deep into detox requires a holistic effort through the areas of detoxing the mind, body, soul and home to mitigate stress and increase our overall sense of wellbeing. Offering Mindfulness Meditation and Dharma Teachings in Los Angeles, Celeste strongly believes in the power of mindful awareness to heal and reconnect us to our inherent sense of ease and well-being. We had a chance to sit down with her to learn more about meditation and the crucial role it plays in our lives.

Name: Celeste Young

What’s Meditation?

There are many ways to answer this, depending on your form of meditation practice. One way to frame the practice I teach is that mindfulness or Insight meditation is a formal practice of developing the capacity to stay present for our moment to moment experience, with mindfulness, in the service of Insight and awakening.

How do you Detox (tips / rituals)?

I find that I can feel a difference when I let go of caffeine and sugar for awhile. My system and energy tends to stabilize. I also find that detox-ing from technology is important. I have a friend who gifted me with a yellow light bulb recently to down-regulate and counteract all of the blue light we take in each day from our devices. I can feel the impact of using that on my nervous system and circadian rhythms. The other way I detox is spending time in nature, and of course, spending time in silent retreat each year is a huge detox for me, when I practice letting go of unhelpful habits on many levels and surrender to the stillness. I’m also learning to incorporate some Ayurvedic self care rituals into my routine to detox. Julie Bernier and I are teaching a retreat together that I’m really excited about. It marries the practices of Ayurveda, and what I teach- Dharma and mindfulness, for others to learn to bring these tools together for a more balanced life.

What does your typical Beauty Routine look like?

The best beauty tool for me is really getting enough rest so I feel in a balanced state in my body, mind and heart. That’s when I feel most beautiful- when I’m connected to my essence and embodied. I would add also when my sense of humor is intact and I have the right balance between connection and solitude so I feel spacious and available to whatever life brings. That fluidity feels like a beautiful state and keeps us vibrant. Practically, I also love Epsom salt baths and use lip balm every day. I’ve been addicted to lip balm since I was 14 years old! Maybe baths too, actually…

What was the last book you read?

I’m currently reading a number of books! But the most recent book I finished is Happiness by Matthieu Ricard. It’s a wonderful book. I highly recommend it.

Perfect day…is?

I’ll defer to Ghandi- “Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony.” A day where I’ve lived that way is a perfect day for me. It’s not so much about the conditions of my life that day, but how I’m meeting them.

When you need to destress what is your go to?

I have to say it’s definitely meditation. Also, many years ago I trained to be a yin yoga teacher, as this has been a part of my practice. I have recently been finding my way back to it. It’s a very simple, still, and slow practice.

What is your favorite room in your home?

I really like the living room space, when my front door is open and the light pours in in the afternoon, it’s very sweet.

Best advice anyone has given you is…?

You can do it. (Fill in the blank for whatever IT is). I’m grateful to all the people in my life who gave me permission at critical moments to do what I thought I couldn’t- whether that was because I thought it might be too much, I felt afraid, or I didn’t think I could ask for it- whatever it may be. Those moments have changed the course of my life.

First thing you do when you wake up, is?

Check in with my state of being- body, heart, and mind state, and set an intention.

Last thing you do before you go to sleep, is?

I like to write before bed, when I have the space for it. Sitting meditation before bed is also a great way to move consciously into the sleep state.

Any tips/advice for people looking to start their own daily meditation practice?

This topic of establishing a daily practice or sadhana is actually the theme for our Living Wisdom Retreat in Tulum next year, so I’m glad you asked! I talk about this a lot in my work, and so does Julie (Bernier), so we’re looking forward to offering this retreat to support people in establishing a daily practice. What I would say is make the commitment as a gift to yourself, and not as a burden. Give yourself the gift of your own full attention. Practically speaking, it also helps to choose the same time of day, and same place if you can, to begin to incorporate it into your routine as a habit. Find a practice you enjoy and trust that, and trust the ways you begin to benefit and allow that to deepen your commitment to your practice. Let go of self-judgment and open to whatever arises.

Website: Celesteyoung.com

IG account: @celestebyoung

A few Upcoming Retreats:

Living Wisdom Daylong Retreat: Refining the Gateways of Our Innermost Being with Celeste Young and Julie Bernier. September 29th, 2018. 10 – 4pm. This retreat brings together the two traditions of Insight meditation and Ayurveda practice.  

Julie and Celeste are also teaching a Living Wisdom Residential Retreat in Tulum Mexico March 14th – 18th, 2019 at Casa Violeta.

Wise Intention: Living Our Heart’s Aspiration Daylong Meditation Retreat at Spirit Rock Meditation Center December 1st 10:00am – 4:30pm

Finding Balance: Insight Meditation Retreat in the Andalusian region of Spain July 22nd – 28th, 2019