Never pick at your skin.

Picking at your skin is a major No, No.

Did you know that picking causes 80-90% of acne scaring. Typically cystic acne is the only kind acne that leaves scaring. All other scars are usually caused by improperly extracting the pimple.

I never recommend picking your own skin but if you are going to do it there are a few rules you have to follow:

1. Never touch a pimple unless it has a white or yellow cap on the top. If it doesn't have one of those it is not ready and no matter how much picking you do you will not get any or all of it out.

2. Wait until your right out of the shower. This makes the skin softer and more pliable.

3. When you do do the extraction always use q-tips NOT your fingernails! Take two q-tips push on either side of the pimple and make a scooping motion to get underneath the pimple. Pushing straight down on the pimple will cause it to break underneath the skin. The skin will then push the bacteria along and you will get another pimple in a different spot.

4. The extraction is done as soon as you see blood. The area will still be raised and swollen. This is normal. If you try to extract until the area is flat you will definitely damage the skin, leaving a scab or even worse a scar!

5. Lastly you have to treat the area immediately. I suggest using a spot treatment with benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid. In a pinch hydrogen peroxide will work as well.

Again I never recommend doing it yourself but if you follow these rules you will cause much less trauma to the skin. Seeing a professional is the best way to get rid of your blemishes. We are highly trained and have the proper implements to do the job right!


What age should people start getting facials?

I think people should start to get facials in their teens, around 12 or 13, because this is around the time that problems start. If teens are taught at a young age how to properly take care of their skin they will avoid a lot of problems in the future. I do a teen facial which I spend the time telling them how to take care of their skin. How important cleansing morning and night is and how they need to wash after sporting activities, etc. The importance of moisturizing and sunscreen and how damaging picking at their skin is are also things that I discuss with them. I have a lot of teenage clients and it really makes a big difference in their skin and their self-esteem!

I will say though that it is NEVER to late to start getting facials. Facials can improve your skin at any age. So no matter how old you are give it a try and see how wonderful facials really are!


Roll-CIT treatment

This an amazing new treatment that I am offering at the salon. It is now the #1 treatment in Europe!

The treatment is simple. It is all about penetrating the proper products deeper into the skin to achieve maximum results. A roller that has very small needles all around it is rolled over the skin. This creates very small holes in the skin allowing the product to penetrate deeper. I love this because unlike chemical peels or micro dermabrasion it doesn't disrupt the outer layer of the skin and there is absolutely no downtime. These small holes also cause the wound healing process to kick in. When healing occurs collagen is produced to protect the skin. More collagen equals tighter, more supple skin.

I have been doing this treatment for about a month. Another great part is that the client gets to keep the roller. They take it home and use it 4-7 nights a week then apply the AVST product that is recommended for their skin type. The results have been incredible. I have been using it myself for about 5 weeks and cannot believe the difference in my skin.

I have included a testimonial from one of my clients. Come in and give it a try, you'll love it!!!!!!!!

Dear Angie,

After 6 weeks on the Environ AVST program, I am seeing dramatic 
results. My skin is amazingly smoother and firmer, and the brown spots 
from years of sun damage have faded considerably. Friends have been 
telling me that I look "younger" and refreshed. Wow! It has not been 
the easiest program to follow -- the rolling adds another 3-5 minutes 
to my cleansing routine at night and takes getting used to -- a pain 
in the neck for an already busy person! But the results have been 
worth the investment of time. Thank you for introducing me to this 
terrific product.


Lactic acid

Lactic acid is an alpha hydroxy acid that has many uses in the skin care industry. As you may have guessed by the name, lactic acid is derived from milk. It has been used for centuries for improving the condition of the skin. Cleopatra was even documented as having taken milk baths for softer smoother skin! Lactic acid is still used in many skin care products today.

Alpha hydroxy acids are used to break down the bond that holds the dead skin on your face. This leaves the skin exfoliated and feeling smooth.

When used as a chemical peel it is best suited for dry, sensitive skin. Lactic acid has a larger molecule so it doesn't penetrate the skin as rapidly as say glycolic acid so it causes less irritation. There are many different strengths available so make sure your esthetician knows what strength is best for you skin.

It is also used in home care products. It can be used as a gentle exfoliante and it will add extra hydration at lower levels. It is also used as a pigment lightener. It is a very versatile product and one of my favorite treatments to use in the facial room.


New Product

I have brought in a new product I am so excited about.

AVST or Advanced Vitamin Skin Therapy is a range of products from Environ. AVST  is produced in five varying strengths of vitamins A and C. All of the products contain antioxidants, flavonoids and penetrant enhancers while AVST 3 and up also contain peptides to promote collagen and elastin formation.

No fragrance or sunscreen is included in this range therefore a sunscreen is necessary.

This is a "step-up" approach to Vitamin A. Vitamin A can be very irritating to the skin so easing into it is the best approach. By the time you get to AVST 4 and 5 you are using Vitamin A that is perscription stength. 


Does chocolate cause breakouts?

Does chocolate cause breakouts? Well not directly, but anything you eat can effect your skin. There has been no direct link between a specific food and acne. That does not mean that what you eat doesn't effect your skin. If you eat a diet that's high in fat, sugar and preservatives your body has a lot of toxins that are built up in it. Your skin is an excretory organ (part of the waste removal system in our bodies) and helps to remove toxins from the body, so if your body is chuck full of toxins it will get rid of the extra waste any way it can. For some this may mean extra breakouts. Everyone's system is different and some people are sensitive to certain foods. If  your eating a lot of chocolate and you notice your breaking out more if could mean that your body is sensitive to chocolate and your body cannot break it down that well or you've had to much and you should cut back. The same goes for pizza, cheeseburgers, french fries or candy. If you notice a certain food causes your skin to breakout then obviously avoid those foods or eat less of them. So go ahead and enjoy that piece of chocolate or have that slice of pizza just don't go overboard.


You're Invited to a Party!

Please join me! I can't wait to show you our fabulous line of skincare and
treat you to some goodies! 
Remember to RSVP on our Facebook Page so that we reserve enough goody bags for all!

See You There!


Follow up

The teenager I saw a couple weeks ago came back in on Saturday. Her mom took my advise and bought her Proactive that day. Her skin looked sooo much better. It was not 100% clear but much, much better. I did a Comodex treatment on her and cannot wait to see her again in a few weeks to see how she made out.
I did advise her again that Proactive will definitely plateau after a couple of months and I can recommend some products for her at that time. She was so happy! It was so nice to see.




There are sooo many different types of moisturizers out there that it's crazy to try and navigate through them and they are all promising to dramatically change your skin. There are a couple of things that you should know before buying a moisturizer.

1. Some moisturizer's have humectants. This ingredient attracts and binds moisture to the skin.
Ingredients such as glycer, hyaluronic acid, seaweed, sodium PCA, and butylene or proylene
glycol are commonly found in these products. Look for these ingredients if you have an oilier
skin. It will attract hydration without clogging the skin. Dry skin can also benefit from
humectants because they can attract moisture that is lacking.

2. Other moisturizers have emollients which keep moisture from leaving the skin. Look for
ingredients such as mineral oil, vegetable oils, fatty acids, silicones or waxes. These
products work by creating a barrier and keeping the moisture in the skin. You should have one
or more of these ingredients in your moisturizer if you have dry skin.

There is also some confusion about night creams and if they are really necessary. Night creams are made to actually penetrate the skin where moisturizers are made to stay on top to put a protective layer against you and the environment. You actually get more benefit from a night cream because it does penetrate. This is why I usually recommend a night cream with some form of corrector in it.





I had a great consultation on Saturday that I wanted to share.

A mom brought her teenage daughter in to see what I could do for her. She has been seeing a dermatologist and taking some meds but nothing seems to be working.

I emphasized that there is no cure for acne but that I did think I could help her. She is using a Neutragena Cleanser and a Clean and Clear Moisturizer (occassionally). So the first thing I did was recommend product to use at home. I always start teenagers with acne to try Proactive. I know my fellow estheticians are dying right now but it does work for some people and it's $19.95. It's worth a shot in my opinion. If that doesn't work than I always recommend the products I carry at the salon. (Parents usually don't want to spend a lot of money because teenagers are so inconsistent with their routine.)

Once I establish the importance of a home care regime and not picking at their skin I set up a treatment plan. Acne should be treated every three weeks to start. Once it is under control you can go to once a month then once every 4-6 weeks from there.

I use a great treatment called Comodex. Comodex is a breakthrough treatement for treating acne, acne scarring and hyper pigmentation. Using tomato extract for antibacterial properties, TSR (transcutol with Retinol and Salicylic acid)for sebum regulation and naturally derived skin lightners this treatment has it all. I have had awesome results with this treatment.


Do I really need a toner?

"Do I really need a toner?" or "What does a toner actually do?"

I can't tell you how many times I've been asked those questions.

Toners have been around for a very long time. They used to be known as astringents. Astringents were very harsh and very drying to the skin so most of them have been reformulated and are now referred to as toners.

Toners have two specific jobs. One is to remove any excess cleanser that is left on the skin and the other is to return the pH balance of the skin back to normal.

The skin has a thin layer of oil on the outer layer called the acid mantle. This is the bodies first line of defense. It helps to fight off acne bacteria, pollutants, even the common cold. Most cleansers can strip the acid mantle leaving the skin feeling tight and dry. Some of the better cleansers today do a better job at not stripping the acid mantle but even the best cleansers strip the skin slightly. Toners usually have a proper pH so they return the skin back to an acidic state and (as stated above) remove any excess cleanser. Toners that have a little alpha hydroxy acid in them can also act as an mild exfoliator.

They are not an absolute necessity but they really are helpful to a proper skin care regimen.



Cleansers are one of the most important aspects of your skin care regimen. They set the stage for the rest of the routine.

Cleansers that dry the skin really reek havoc. Usually people with oily skin feel that they need to dry out their skin so they use cleansers that strip the oil. When the natural oil of the skin is stripped it dries out the outer layer. The skin then tells the oil glands "OK I'm dry" so the oil glands produce more oil than is actually necessary to compensate for the dryness. It also creates a layer of dry, dead skin. The dead skin falls into the follicle mixes with the excess oil and boom, you get a blackhead or a blemish or whatever decides to rear its ugly head that day. People with oily skin should stick to a nice basic cleanser. One that doesn't leave their face feeling tight after they use it. If oil is a concern use a wash one or two times a week that has salicylic acid in it. If breakouts are an issue use a wash with benzoyle peroxide in it. Again just one or two times a week. Using it too often can over dry the skin.

Now if you have dry skin to start with you can understand how bad the wrong cleanser can be. The biggest problem with dry skin is when you dry out the outer layer it makes a barrier of dead skin. Dead skin cannot hold moisture. So you can put 10lbs of moisturizer on but it will not get through to the cells you need them to get through to. People with dry skin should use a gentle, milky cleanser that doesn't leave the skin feeling tight or dry. Using an exfoliating cleanser once or twice a week helps to remove dead skin build up. Also using a cleanser with an alpha hydroxy acid regularly helps to keep the skin exfoliated. Exfoliated skin can better except any product applied afterward.

I carry many different kinds of cleanser. One or two for every skin type.

What I Do At The Image Studio Salon

You may be curious about exactly what my services entail at The Image Studio Salon! I would love to share them with you and encourage you to visit our website for all that we offer from Facials to Waxing to Nails and Hair. Come spend the day with us---We will make you feel like a brand new woman!

Angela's Services


New Products

I'm so excited! I just got in the Mark Lees Signature Series skin care products. I have been working with their Sensitive Science line and parts of the Moisture Support System for a long time. They are fantastic products and my clients really love them.

I was looking for products that could help to control oil production in the skin. One of my clients went down to Florida and had a treatment with Dr. Lees himself. He recommended products to her and she has been using them for a while now and her skin really transformed. So I had to have them!

"This is our most popular range of products comprised of time-tested formulations that address the elemental needs of skin that needs moisture, but tends to develop clogged pores and break out easily. The Mark Lees Signature Line adds needed hydration without heavy fats or oils that can clog pores. Used as a system, the Signature Line will help eliminate existing clogged pores, help prevent new clogged pores, while providing hydration and protection to achieve clearer and more beautiful-looking skin."

That sounds awesome to me! I can't wait to see the results!


Facials are for everyone

I wish everyone would get a facial.

I cannot tell you the number of people I've worked on that said "I don't know why I waited so long to have this done." Facials used to be looked at as a luxury. Times are changing and people  are realizing that is it not a luxury but a necessity. Facials should be looked at just like getting your hair or your nails done. Your face is what you show the world every day of your life.

 In my opinion, if there's one thing on your body you should be taking special care of that should be it. Having facials done on a regular basis can do wonderful things for your skin. They help to improve circulation, exfoliate dead skin, remove acne and unwanted debris and help you to prevent future damage. People used to say that they really don't make a difference in the skin but if you know someone who gets facials on a regular basis I bet you can tell. If you think you can't afford to get them done your wrong.

There are so many options available that make it quite affordable. There are 1/2 hour treatments and packages available that bring the cost of the facials down. Even if you have to splurge it is TOTALLY worth it. If you've never had one please do yourself a favor and give it a try. Do some research before having one done. Ask your friends or family where they've gone or go online and read some reviews. Pick a place where you think you'd be comfortable and go for it.


I thought I'd start my first blog by introducing myself. My name is Angela Fortin.

I am a married mother of one teenage boy and the co-owner of The Image Studio salon in Latham, NY.

I have been a licensed esthetician since 1995 and absolutely love what I do! My passion is to share my knowledge and to teach people how to properly take care of their skin. I am constantly going to classes, reading trade magazines, going to trade shows and keeping up with what's new and exciting in the world of cosmetic surgery. My hope is to help people navigate through the hype and to make them better consumers. If there's any questions you have I'd love to try to answer them for you.


Welcome to Pure SKIN

We look forward to sharing our views and knowledge on skin, skin care.