Leahlani Skincare's Leah Klasovsky and her team. 

As The Waitresses like to remind us in their holiday hit '"Christmas Wrapping," now the calendar is just one page, people! After the holiday hustle ends a fresh, new year awaits us. Which means resolutions, those best intentions that so often get muddled by mid-winter, when Netflix binging and freezing winter temps can foil even the most motivated among us. For 2017, we're resolving to streamline our resolutions and really hone in on things that truly matter, like our health, our relationships, and—if we can be indulgent for just a moment—our skin. Cleaning up our skincare routine is always something we try to be mindful of, but really weeding out the nasties and going full-on green can be perplexing.

Leah Klasovksy of Hawaii-based Leahlani Skincare has created a mermaid-worthy skincare line fueled by botanicals and her holistic approach to soothing, clearing, and smoothing, which is based on her own experiments in self-healing. Informed by her training as a holistic esthetician, Klasovksy has developed a line of elixirs built on luxurious natural ingredients that pack potent antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties—they're also insanely gorgeous to look at on your bathroom shelf. We chatted with Klasovsky about how to make some real changes in how we care for our skin, and were stoked to hear that it could be as simple as adding a bit more scrub time to our weekly beauty routine. Read on below to see what she suggests if coming clean is something you're thinking about, too.

BIKINI.COM: We all know that natural is better--but change is hard! If you’re looking to make some healthy shifts in your skincare routine for the new year, where is a smart place to start?

LEAH KLASOVKY: I know how hard it can be to find the right products for your skin type. The best place to start is by getting great info from the experts in the industry. There are so many amazing bloggers out there, I would suggest saritacoren.com and gurlgonegreen.com. There are also many fabulous green beauty stores that are both brick and mortar and online, and they are great resources as well. We share all of our retail partners online and they are amazing and fabulous stores that offer the best-of-the-best beauty products.

BIKINI.COM: Can you educate us one some red-flag ingredients to avoid + why?

LK: I want to encourage people on what they should look for in skin care rather then what they should avoid. Look for products that are full with life- where the ingredients will not have you scratching your head thinking ‘what the heck is this?’ and will rather have you thinking ‘I can’t wait to get this on my face!’. Look for products with super-food ingredients that are full of mineral rich clays, active enzymes, essential oils, vibrant botanicals and organic and cold pressed oils. Your skin is your largest organ on your body, it is so important to nourish it with ingredients that will help maintain balance and enhance vibrance.



BIKINI.COM: What are some star ingredients that you find insanely effective?

LK: Hands down, my all-time favorite skincare ingredient is raw, organic honey. We use Hawaiian Nectar in quite a few of our products, and it is the one ingredient that completely transformed my complexion. Raw honey is naturally antiseptic and antimicrobial, helping to thoroughly cleanse the skin and dissolve bacteria, making it great for acne prone skin. I love organic and cold pressed oils; my favorites being Chia, Prickly Pear, Moringa, Marula and Grapeseed oils. These oils are full of life, and contain abundant amounts of antioxidants and vitamins that the skin adores. I could literally go on and on as I have a serious passion for ingredients, but we do break down each ingredient that we utilize in every single product on our website. I created a tab called “The Magic” that is under each listing that describes in full detail the magic that is in each ingredient in every product.

BIKINI.COM: What is the most common complaint you hear as a skincare expert?

LK: The top three skin care concerns that I hear are about acne, pigmentation and aging.

BIKINI.COM: Can you share some skin-changing tips and tricks that we should be incorporating into our skincare routine?

LK: There is so much information at the tip of our fingertips daily, it is so hard to gauge what to take and what to leave. Take exfoliation for example—even as an esthetician, we are trained to tell our clients that you should only exfoliate 1x a week. Yet I noticed a huge transformation in my complexion when I learned that I need to exfoliate 3-4x a week. This may be due to the fact that I live in a humid climate and my skin truly needs a thorough (yet gentle) more often to help maintain a clear complexion. If you are someone who has very thin and sensitive skin, then I would not recommend exfoliating more then once per week. But if your skin tends to be more oily and prone to breakouts, try exfoliating 2x a week and see how your skin reacts with that.

That being said, it is important to be mindful about what you are using to exfoliate your skin with— not all exfoliants are created equal. I would advise staying away from harsh exfoliants that contain large granules (such as fruit seeds etc.) that can cause more harm then good. They can ’tear’ the skin cells, and over time they can cause broken capillaries and premature aging. We use finely ground microdermabrasion crystals in our Honey Love 3-in-1, these are truly magic and will gently, yet effectively, exfoliate skin.

Another tip is understanding that oils are your skins best friend! If you want your skin to truly glow, introduce your skin to some beautiful oils. The key is finding which will best resonate with your skin, and I always recommend asking questions before purchasing to help determine which serums & elixirs are best suited for your individual skin type.

It's also important to realize that how you use your products, and in which order you use them, makes a huge difference. For example, misting your face with a toning mist before applying your serums and elixirs will boost hydration and allow for ultimate absorption. Applying a balm as the last step to your ritual in the PM will help to lock in moisture and deeply nourish the skin. If you want your products to work magic on your complexion, asking how to use them and in what order will make a huge difference.

BIKINI.COM: What do you think 2017 will bring in terms of skincare innovations or trends?

LK: This is a great question! To be honest, I truly don’t know. I feel like the trends are always shifting. I do think there has been a huge shift and that more and more people are reaching for more natural-based skincare products and they are loving the results. Also, many mainstream beauty stores are now carrying indie brands and green beauty brands- so they are becoming more easily accessible which is amazing! I have a feeling that this is only the beginning.