Take An Acid Trip With Me

What do you look for in your skin care products? We all want wrinkle fighters, brighteners, lighteners, pore shrinkers, zit fighters…well maybe not all that at once. But, how do you know if you have the right ingredients in your daily products to address your needs ?

One of the most important group of ingredients in skin care are Alpha and Beta Hydroxy Acids, aka AHA’s and BHA’s. These acids are derived from foods and are the workhorse of the skin care world. Let’s look at some of the most commonly used acids in skin care to help you have a better understanding of how to read you labels and get the most bang for your buck.

Alpha Hydroxy Acids

  1. Glycolic – derived from sugar cane, glycolic acid breaks the bonds holding dead skin cells together allowing them to shed and reveal healthy skin underneath. Glycolic acid was the go to acid for many years and known as “the classic peel” because of it’s small molecular size and ability to penetrate more deeply than other acids. But because of that, it is not as well controlled and can be irritating.
  2. Lactic Acid – derived from sour milk, lactic acid is quickly gaining more popularity in both over the counter and in office professional treatments. Lactic also helps shed dead skin while at the same time is very hydrating, lightening and safe for sensitive skin.
  3. Mandelic acid – made from bitter almonds and is both anti-inflammatory and antibacterial. It will soften the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles and improve skin texture. At the same time, they lighten areas that have darkened in response to skin damage and sun exposure. It can also boost collagen production in the dermis of the skin, giving skin a firmer more youthful appearance.
  4. Malic Acid – made from apples it has a superior ability to penetrate the skin, and is an ideal moisturizer for people who have very sensitive skin.
  5. Tartaric Acid – derived from grape wine, this AHA is not as popular as the other acids because it is not as stable. You will find it in many skin care preparations, but usually not as a main AHA.

Beta Hydroxy Acids

The only BHA used in skin care is salicylic acid which is derived from willow tree bark. Salicylic is powerful for oily, acneic skin and is the most common ingredients in over-the-counter acne face washes. It is the only oil soluble acid, meaning it can penetrate sebum and unclog black heads and white heads.

Finding the Right Acid For You

The FDA does not require skin care and cosmetic companies to list the percentage of acids in the product. However, it must have less than 10% for an over-the-counter product. When reading your labels make sure the AHA or BHA is listed as the 2nd or 3rd ingredient.

For a more potent percentage, you will need to visit an aesthetician. Licensed skin specialists are able to prescribe and cell much higher concentrations of active ingredients. For example, I often put my acne clients on a 8-15% mandelic serum to assist with lightening acne scars and clear pimples. Professional treatments, such as peels, involve applying much larger concentrations of the acids onto the skin for rapid results. Lactic peels, glycolic peels and mandelics are among the kinds of peels than can be applied by a professional .

For further assistance in making sure your skin is matched to the right acid or for a more rapid response and higher concentration visit us at Citrus Skin Studio.  We offer a free skin analysis and consultation that can show you what products and treatments are right for your skin type and condition. Just contact us to schedule an appointment, and you can take an acid trip with me.

Donna RN, LE


Taking the Embarrassment out of Brazilian Waxing

I have a lot of tips about making your wax more comfortable physically. But what about the embarrassment of being exposed? Getting your first intimate waxing can be really awkward.You come to Citrus Skin Studio and you and I meet and within a few minutes your bare butt is on the table and I am all up in your lady bits. Some people are lucky, less reserved and just jump right on up on the table. I usually hear ” after having kids I have lost all modesty”. But even those who have a few kids can still feel really shy. I get it. I went to the same waxer for a long time and it still felt weird. I have been a nurse for 25 years, even working in Labor and Delivery and I still can’t totally relax for my gyn exam.  I am talking to you from a point of empathy and hope that by sharing what you can expect from the minute you come to see me, at least some of the anxiety will dissipate and even if you feel shy, you will be able to relax enough for me to do a good job and make it as pleasant as possible.

When you arrive at Citrus I will introduce myself to you as soon as possible and I will give you forms to fill out. There are certain medications that could cause you to be more sensitive so we need to talk about that. I also will want to know if you have ever been waxed before and if you had an adverse reaction to the wax. I will give you an opportunity to use the ladies room. A full bladder during waxing can add to your discomfort. I will also offer you wine. Excess alcohol can cause more sensitivity but a little glass to take the edge off is fine.

When you are ready you will be taken into a private room and be instructed on how to prep. I will step out of the room to give you privacy while you undress and use a pre cleansing wipe. You will then get up on the table and drape your lap with a towel. When I come in I will  put on gloves, cleanse all the skin where I am going to wax and just start on a small area. If it is your first wax I want you to be acclimated to the sensation. I also use a lot of hard wax, so if you were waxed elsewhere with soft wax I want you to feel the difference. Hard wax is much gentler. I will do a strip or two in the bikini area. At that point , if you are still really uncomfortable, we can stop. Almost all the time a newbie tells me that the waxing wasn’t nearly as painful as they expected it be. But if it is too much from you it is ok to call it quits. Some clients start out with scheduling just a bikini their first appt and then move up to a Brazilian.

After the first couple strips the rest goes quickly. Usually less than 15 mins for the whole thing. We will chat about work, kids, This is Us, football, your wedding..anything to keep your mind off what is  going on down there. The next thing you know your back out the door. It is not so bad once we get started and when we do get to more sensitive areas I will show you how to hold your skin to make things more comfortable and we will do some breathing techniques to ” blow away the pain”.

I hope that you can sort of visualize the process now and that alleviates some anxiety. But there are a few things that may be running thru the back of your mind that I will be upfront with you about. Things that may be making you afraid to book that appt:

Will I see everything ? Yes. Some of us have hairs on our inner labia. I will get those. Most of us have hair in our butt crack. I will get those. As one client recently said ” you see parts of me that even my husband doesn’t see”! Somehow,it seems normal. We get to talking. Things happen quickly. For most of the procedure you are in a frog leg position. At the end you will pull one or both legs back to get the crack. Yep. It is awkward but really worth getting the hair out I cannot even guess how many vaginas and butt cracks I have seen in my nursing and waxing career. Anyone who does waxing sees them day in and day out. We don’t even think twice about it. Chances are, yours is not special or memorable in any way. Just run of the mill girl parts. Which leads to..

Am I normal down there?  Most girls don’t get a close look at other girls like I do and they want to know. Everyone is different but the same. If that makes sense. We all have the same pieces but some of us have weird blotches, moles, fat labia, labia that turn inward, hemorrhoids, long floppy labia…you get my point. I have not seen anything so freakishly strange that it made me run.

What if I have an odor? If you care enough to get waxed, you probably already have pretty good hygiene down there. I give you a pre cleanse wipe and I cleanse again before we start. I honestly haven’t had many issues with clients, even on the hottest days. I think my nose is pretty immune. Actually, stinky feet are more of a problem during the summer. And it really doesn’t bother me.

What if I fart ? You probably won’t. But there are some people who are nervous tooters. Just give me a heads up if I am pretty close in that area. You have to have a sense of humor to do what I do and it’s really ok. I have to say out of the dozens of waxes I do a week – I might get one fart a month.

What if I scream ? Nobody does. It doesn’t hurt that bad. Scream if you want. Curse. But most people get a weird nervous laugh if anything.

What if I just can’t do it ? Intimate waxing is not for everyone. I am not trying to sell you on the service. But so many of you are curious and want to try it. I just want to tell you how it really is and invite you in to try it. You are allowed to stop the waxing at any point if it is not for you. I do need you to relax your legs and your muscles as much as possible because it will hurt less and I can do a better job. I will give you a break if you need one. I can also tell you that it is probably not nearly as bad as you think and after the first one the next is significantly easier. Your brain knows what to expect. Your hair is finer and thinner. You know me and what the process will be.

Are you ready to try it ? If you would like to schedule you can book online or give us a call!


Happy Waxing


The Complete Beginners Guide To Getting A Facial

f-798x532@2xWe love newbies at Citrus Skin Studio. We love teaching and guiding you towards your goals for healthy skin and a complexion that makes you feel confident. However, we do come across a lot of misconceptions about getting facials. Some feel that it is just fluff, a luxury that is not necessary but reserved for special occasions or a girl’s day out. What a facial is, or should be, is self care and an investment in the face that you are going to look at every day for years to come. A facial can help correct and/or prevent many conditions such as sun damage, melasma, rosacea, acne, premature aging and fine lines. A facial can help you understand your skin type and what products and ingredients are best suited for you. A facial can help you save money by avoiding buying products that are not appropriate for your skin or products that you do not need. So, what exactly can you expect? When you visit us at Citrus Skin Studio you can expect the following to happen :

-We will ask you to fill out paperwork. It is important to us, and anywhere you go for service, that we know about allergies and medications. Certain medications can make your skin more sensitive. Some health conditions may cause contraindications with the tools we may use,like ultrasonic or high frequency. Retinols have a big impact on how we proceed so it is important we discuss this before we start.

– We will want to know what you are using at home and what your home care routine is so we can help you in filling any holes you have and make sure any ingredients in your home care products will not cause sensitivity during your facial.

– We will ask you what your concerns are. Not everything can be fixed with one facial. We want you to have realistic expectations. We also want to customize your facial to address your specific concerns and make a game plan for any further treatments.

– You will be taken into a private room and given a wrap to change into if you are comfortable with that. Our facial includes working on the neck and chest as well as a shoulder massage.

– We will perform a double cleanse and then examine your skin with a magnifying lamp. We want to look for milia, white heads and black heads, sun damage as well as many other things. We want to feel how resilient your skin is, if you have a lot of collagen loss as well as feel the texture and dryness or oiliness.

– Based on the skin assessment we will choose an exfoliating enzyme. A deeper exfoliating than you can do at home and at the same time it can deliver needed corrective ingredients into the skin to help with the issues we are targeting as well as to balance the skin. We often use steam with the enzyme to help it work better and to soften your skin for the next step.

– Extractions. While during your visit we strive to make sure you are comfortable, this step can be a bit uncomfortable. It is the process in which we clean out your pores and relieve impactions – think Dr Pimple Popper.  We are gentle and most clients really appreciate this step even if it is a little pinchy here and there. You may not need extractions or you may opt not to have them done.

– Serums and Masks are next to give your skin what it needs for balance and hydration. They will be chosen specifically for your needs and we have a wide variety for any face we take care of. We will use many other products and tools during your facial to treat your skin concerns.  This includes antioxident serum, corrective toners,  dermafiles,  ultrasonic scrubber and spatula, and  hydration meter just to name a few.

– While your mask is on you will enjoy a complimentary hand and arm massage.

– When your facial is over we will provide you samples of products for your skin type and concerns and written instructions.

We recommend that you have a facial every 4 to 6 weeks or at least seasonally as your skin has different needs as the weather changes.

At Citrus Skin Studio we strive to combine a spa experience with clinical treatments and provide results driven facials. As a new client, we schedule you for 90 mins allowing time for paperwork and to ask as many questions as you need. We want you to love and appreciate your skin!

Are you ready to invest a little in yourself? Schedule anytime online http://citrusskinstudio.com/appointments/

Feel free to call and ask any questions you have or stop in anytime 😉


How old does my child have to be for a facial?

Our clients ask this often ! Some of our client’s have children as young as 9 starting to experience blackheads, white bumps and oily or overly sensitive skin. My short answer to that is any age! You are never too young to start learning healthy skin care habits. Our skin is an amazing organ and needs proper care . We geek out about it here at Citrus Skin Studio so we welcome any one to learn more about keeping it happy and healthy.

So what happens during a visit with us when we see children and teens ?

  • Our younger guest have a very gentle cleansing facial while older teens may tolerate a deeper cleaning and extractions. Products used for the facial are gentle, organic, botanical based to light peels for teens who for are struggling with acne. We test sensitivity and customize and continually asses the skin to make it as effective and pleasant as possible. We want every client to enjoy their visit here and set the stage for a positive encounter for future visits when and if needed.
  • We talk about heathy habits like regular cleansing and spf use. We try to keep an open conversation and not lecture but share some tips to prevent issues down the road.
  • Many kids play sports so we cover skin care and sweating, body acne and helmets.
  • We want your child to feel confident and happy with their appearance with emphasis on achieving healthy skin and maintaining it.
  • As your child gets older we want them to feel comfortable coming to see us as hormones fluctuate and seasons and skin care needs change. When a zit pops up before a big event we want them to know the safest way to minimize it so they don’t pick and scar or come in to have a spot treatment.

We also cover the impact of food, alcohol and smoking on the skin.
There is lot of DIY skin care stuff out there and some things can harm or irritate the skin so we go over that as well.

It’s a small investment in your child for what will hopefully lead to a better understanding of skin health and open the door to a place to come that will help and teach as their needs change.

You can book online at www.citrusskinstudio.com under TEEN CLEAN or call us at 717.534.1100preteen-facial-798x532@2x

You Will Never Look At Your Cornflakes The Same Way!

Cornflakes, Raisins, and Grapes ? No it’s not Cereal! It’s your skin. Sort of.

If you’re serious about improving the look of your skin…this is Key!

This picture represents a cross section of your skin. The grape layer represents young, new, smooth, undamaged cells. The raisin layer represents cells that start rising to the top showing them becoming dryer, crummier, holding onto old stuff like old oil, sun damaged cells, until at the top they are dried out and flaky, representing the cornflake layer. SHAVE OFF ALL THE CORNFLAKE LAYER & SOME OF THE RAISIN LAYER WITH MICRODERM ABRASION


5 reasons….

1. What do you get when you put makeup on the cornflakes?…you get Frosted Flakes! That doesn’t look good!

2. What do you get when you put moisturizer on the cornflakes?…you get Soggy Flakes! We don’t need that! We want the cornflakes gone!

3. When you put anti-aging products on cornflakes, you are wasting your money! You pay good money for those…make them work better for you! The time is NOW

4. It is physical exfoliation and extractions, with vacuum it moves lymph & gets blood circulating within the tissue.

5. A microdermabrasion facial will leave your skin softer, brighter and appear more youthful as the raisins and grapes reflect light off the face, giving the illusion of youth.

corn-flakes-raisins-grapes-798x1327@2x www.citrusskinstudio.com.

Microdermabrasion $125

Lashes and Lashes and Lashes, Oh My!

lash baLife is Short…But Your Lashes Don’t Have to Be !


Hello all! I’m sure you all know me by now but in case you don’t, my name is Lauren and I am a licensed Esthetician and newly licensed NovaLash artist here at Citrus Skin Studio. I specialize in eyebrow & eyelash tinting as well as eyelash extensions. I’m writing this to help answer any questions you may have about eyelash extensions!

NovaLash lash extensions are a gorgeous new way to extend the length, darken and thicken natural eyelashes. They are a practical and beautiful alternative to the daily use of mascara. Unlike the old traditional strip or tab lashes, lash extensions are the first innovation in lash lengthening that can be worn daily, without nightly removal. They are immediately waterproof, oil-proof and sweat-proof right after the application! Because each tapered, synthetic lash adheres to a single natural lash, the end result is glamorous and natural! There are two different types of NovaLash extensions called extreme/volume and classic. Here at Citrus Skin Studio, we offer the classic eyelash extension; they look more natural and have an easier upkeep.

NovaLash lash extensions are applied while lying down. A full set takes about 120-150 minutes and a touch-up takes about 60-90 minutes, it really depends on the growth and shedding cycle of each person. It is a painless process and a perfect time to take a nap or just relax!

NovaLash extensions can be worn throughout the year with light monthly maintenance. Touch-ups are recommended after the initial full set application to refill any lashes that have cycled out. To maintain the full, thick appearance of a new set of lashes, a touch-up visit is recommended every 2-4 weeks based on your own natural lash growth cycle.

Classic eyelash extensions are the type we offer. Classic lashes are applied one to one, meaning one natural eyelash to one eyelash extension. Volume lashes are applied in clusters, meaning there is a small bunch of about 3 or 4 lashes adhered to one single eyelash. Volume lashes are a little more maintenance and it is more noticeable when a fill is needed because a cluster of eyelash extensions falls out rather than one single eyelash extension. It is a bolder, more dramatic look.

Lash extensions will not harm natural lashes. The NovaLash application technique allows natural lashes to grow and thrive with extensions. This technique requires several different “separation” steps during the application process so each extension adheres to a single natural lash in order to prevent interruption of the lash growth cycle.

Mascara is typically not needed with lash extensions. Mascara should only be used when a touch-up is drawing near. Water-soluble mascara can be worn; however, constant use of mascara may shorten the lifespan of lashes. Waterproof mascara is not recommended for use, as it will dissolve the bond with the lashes. Glycol and carbonate free mascara will help your lashes last longer.

Nightly cleansing is necessary to maximize the life of the extensions. Using a lash wand with a drop of baby shampoo to comb the lashes free of tangles is recommended. This helps to cleanse the lashes of any makeup or debris while moisturizing to maintain flexibility.

For a limited time, a classic full-set of lashes is $100.00 and a fill is $50.00.That being said, if several weeks have passed since you were due for your fill, the price will be $75.00 considering more lashes will have fallen out and more time and labor is required to fill those lashes back in.

To schedule a lash service please visit


or call 717-534-100

I look forward to meeting you !!



When All Else Fails, Take A Bath !

My appreciation for baths began last fall when  I started running. Friday evenings were my long runs and after a busy week at work followed by a long hard run, a bath was perfect. Bath bombs with epsom salts and essential oils helped heal my muscles and start their recovery. Quiet alone time, aside from my dog Sophie trying to stick her face in the bubbles, was a great way to unwind. I have gotten good at taking a bath. I bring in my music, a candle, and wine. Trying to unravel tight muscles and slow my racing mind became a weekly ritual that I still practice.

Recognizing the therapeutic benefits of baths on the mind and body, I started searching for quality bath products that would also hydrate and nourish my skin. Of course, I loved testing products and I have brought in the best to Citrus Skin Studio.

We now carry bath and body products from the well-known lines of Beekman and Cottage Greenhouse. These products were chosen for their quality ingredients, high company standards, feel, scent and benefits for the skin.


Sound tempting? Here are more great reasons to indulge in a bath ritual


It Helps Your Mood

It’s a proven fact. A bath, especially at the end of the day, significantly improved the mood and optimism of the participants of a research study, which was attributed to a combination of bodily comfort, warmth, isolation, and body position

Baths Can Help Relieve Skin Conditions

Baths with essential oils, or oatmeal baths, will moisturize your skin sloughing off dead cells, reduce itching, and calm irritation.

Bath Heat And Salts Can Help With Muscle Pain 

Epsom salts contain magnesium sulfate. Baths are an easy and ideal way to enjoy the associated health benefits. Magnesium plays a number of roles in the body including:

  • regulating enzymes
  • reducing inflammation
  • assisting muscle and nerve function
  •  helping to prevent artery hardening

Sulfates help improve the absorption of nutrients, flush toxins, and help ease migraine headaches


Baths Before Bed Produce Better Sleep

A relaxed mind, warm water, soothed muscles, dim lights…add some lavender oils and you are setting the stage for a deeper and more restful sleep.


Baths Can Alleviate Cold Symptoms and Calm Aches and Pains

Inhaling steam can help clear out nasal passages. try some eucalyptus in a bath bomb or oils to also relieve cough and chest congestion.

Baths are excellent for quiet time and part of a self-care ritual.  Stop into Citrus Skin Studio to check out our latest collection of bath bombs, salts, scrubs and body whips.