Confidence Beyond The Skin-How to Survive the Back to School Routine

What does it mean when the days are shorter, the air is more crisp and rush hour traffic is much worse? School is back in session!

If you have kids, the start of the school year may mean there will be some changes around your house. Your teenage kids probably aren’t sleeping in until noon anymore, lunches will need to be packed and prepared ahead of time, extracurricular activities are starting, and nightly homework routines will need to be implemented. In order to make the back to school transition as smooth as possible for your children, you will need to be very organized.

My friends with young children admit that the hardest part of the day is typically getting the kids and themself out the door in the morning. To save time and sanity in the morning, you might want to organize your day the night before. You can accomplish simple tasks in 10-15 minutes in the quiet of the evening activities, and it could take 20-25 minutes or more to squeeze this in during the  morning chaos. You may also want to set a morning schedule. I have been told many times that having your kids wake up, get dressed, eat breakfast, etc. at the same time each day help eliminate confusion and chaos.

If your kids are older, you might feel more like a taxi driver than a parent. Coordinating, balancing, and actually remembering all of the after school activities can be a challenge. To make sure your not missing a lesson or forgetting to pick someone up after soccer practice, you may want to want to write everything down on a community calendar on the fridge. For the more tech savvy families you might want to create a family calendar on your computers or phones so that you can set reminders for yourself. There are even apps for smarts phones to help manage kids demanding after school schedules!

There are many articles on the internet that offer suggestions for parents and families to help ease the transition into the back to school schedule. Here are a few fun articles that may help you with your back to school routine:

Happy 2012/2013 school year!

Check out the beauty corner of the main newsletter/blog page where I will highlight a different beauty product every month!

I am always looking for new blog topics or interesting products. Send your ideas to

I have been asked if I receive any financial incentive to mention products in my newsletter/blog and the answer is no. I only comment on products that I have used myself or that I recommend to patients because they have unique benefits. However, I am a clinical trainer for both Medicis (Dysport/Restylane) and Allergan (Botox/Juvederm).

For my fellow tech-y followers, I have started daily skin and lifestyle tweets on Twitter! To stay up to date on the latest, you can follow me @kaseydamatopac . For those Facebook fanatics out there, I have also created a FB fan page! Go ahead and “like” the page to stay up to date on the latest in skin care!

Confidence Beyond The Skin-How To Keep Your Nails Long and Healthy

Would you like your nails to be stronger and more healthy? Many people are concerned with the appearance of their hands and nails. Today, the nail cosmetic industry is a booming industry in the US. Before going for your weekly mani-pedi, there are some important factors to consider with regard to nail health:

1. Nails are not tools-Do not use your nails to open cans, scrape off glue or as a convenient screw driver. Not only will they chip and break, you can damage the nail plate and make your nails permanently disfigured.

2. Remember that chemical and excess water are not good for nails. Exposure to water and chemicals can cause nails to weaken and break. Wear gloves when your hands are going to be in water or when you are using cleaning chemicals.

3. Do not over trim cuticles. The cuticle is there to protect your nail and prevent infection. If you (or an overly aggressive technician) trim too much cuticle, you will open up that area to growth from organisms like fungus and bacteria.

4. If you visit a regular nail salon like I do, make sure they are licensed. Try to purchase your own manicure equipment. This will help ensure that you are not exposed to bacteria and fungus from the previous client. Sometimes your technician can store your equipment for you so that you won’t forget it at your next visit.

5. Nail Polish is actually protective for your nail and can help prevent your nail from cracking. I love OPI polish. They have such fun colors!  Be careful of nail hardeners because sometimes they contain formaldehyde and other harsh chemicals and can actually cause damage to your nails and skin. Nail hardeners can even cause rashes on your eyes, neck and face!

6. If your nails continue to chip and peel, you should see a dermatologist who can recommend a prescription cream or gel that can help condition your nails. I have seen great improvements in the condition of damaged nails after using prescription products that contain urea.

7. If your nail is discolored or thickened, you should see a dermatologist right away because this could be a sign of a fungus or maybe even a skin cancer.

I see my nail technician every 2-3 weeks and I try to take as many precautions as possible to protect myself when I am at the salon.  I have to admit that I am a sucker for that glorious 15 minute foot massage that comes with my pedicure treatment!