Category Archives: H20 Hydration



Every week, we’ll feature one of the many ingredients we have hand selected to be in our cult fave products. We’ll tell you what they do for your skin but we’ll also share trade secrets as to how much we actually use in our formulas vs. recommended % and how much they cost.  How is that for transparency?

Ingredient Name: Ectoins

Ectoins The Hero Ingredient found In CyberDERM's H20 Hydration
Ectoins: The Defender of Skin Cells Against UVA, Pollution and More

CD Product Used In: H20 Hydration

Official Name: Ectoins
Skin Benefits: Stimulates skin’s immuno-response to external aggressors like UVA damage, pollution, heat, and wind. Recent in-vivo test showed it minimizes existing wrinkles and prevents future ones.  Also, ultra-nourishing for the skin and increases moisture factor. Ideal for products used in conjunction with sunscreens.
Origin: Natural Micro-Organism found in Egyptian deserts
Recommended Use level: .3%-2%
CD % Used: 1%

Cost: $2000/kg

Winter is Coming…For Your Skin

Clearly, if you are anywhere in North America at this moment, the Game of Thrones tag line does not apply.  Winter has come and it’s come polar vortex and all.  It’s been a harsh winter with cruel winds and if you are lucky, a functioning furnace in high gear.  In our retail store in Ottawa, we’ve been selling a limited edition Regimen Package, “Frozen”. It’s been quite popular as people appreciate the sentiment but are also in desperate need of something to help the inevitable dryness that comes with this type of extreme weather. 
In the midst of this, I’ve decided to incorporate my prescription retinoid back into my skincare routine.  It’s been years since I have regularly used it so now I’m in for the usual obstacle of trying to tolerate it.  I have even more dryness to try and overcome.
Winter Skincare Regimen Featuring CyberDERM Products
Winter Skincare Regimen Featuring CyberDERM Products

With a little experimentation, I’ve stumbled upon a system that is actually working.  It’s keeping the dryness at bay and letting me use my prescription retinoid roughly 3x a week.  I thought I’d share for this month’s blog!  It does include parts of the Frozen package, which is not available on our website. If you would like to try it though and receive the 25% savings, just call us directly and we will set you up and ship it out with no issue.  You can also ask for recommendations on the other parts I’m going to mention as well.

The Winter Cure:
Step One: Take your favourite  pure oil, olive oil is a nice option or argan oil if you have it and use about a palm-full to apply over your face. Gently massage with finger tips to help gently exfoliate dead skin.  You do not necessarily need a facial oil or anything blended for this step- a pure and simple one is best.
Step Two: Take your favourite creamy cleanser (I use Tata Harper’s Regenerating Cleanser) and apply dry to the skin immediately after the facial oil.  Apply in circular motions, again gently massaging.  Wet the face and rinse cleanser off.  The combination of these two steps will gently emulsify the oil, which will have picked up dirt, but will also remove excess oil and made your cleansing step more hydrating. 
You can do this combination cleansing as much as you would like throughout the week.  Try it once or twice a week but if you find it helpful, most people can do it every day in the winter. 
Step Three: Apply Nu-Shroom Hydrafill to cleansed skin.  You will need about a quarter-size amount for the entire face.  This will sink immediately into skin for longer lasting hydration.
Step Four: Apply H20 Hydration over entire face.  The H20 Hydration will help maintain your protective moisture barrier to prevent water loss from the skin. 
Step Five: If you are doing this routine in the AM, you can add your Sun Whip as your final step.  We’ve been recommending the Simply Zinc in the winter since it is more rich in terms of hydration and the increased protection is important when snow reflects 80% of UV rays.  You can of course use the Every Morning based on your preference. 
If you are doing this routine in the PM, do Steps 1-4, after you are home from work.  You can then just before bedtime add in your corrective skincare step.  For me, I’ve been switching between my Differin (prescription retinoid) and my Emblica Light and Bright for brightening.  You can also use your PM Anti-Age at this point if that is part of your routine. 
There you have it!  It involves a lot of layering but just consider how much extra pressure your skin is under at this moment.  With a little assistance, it can be as soft and pinch-able as your summer skin!
Let us know how this works for you or if you have any tips of your own!
All the best,


Our Product Line in Two Words

With the introduction of our Nu-shroom Hydrafill Serum, our product line is now standing at a lucky seven in total.  We do a lot of visits to tradeshows and retail partners and I can see that sometimes it can be overwhelming to build a skincare regimen with all of the options.  How do you use the Emblica Light and Bright versus the PM Anti-Age? What should I use for hydration the Nu-Shroom or the H20?  We do have our regimen packages to help simplify but I thought it would be helpful if I could reduce the benefits of each of our non-sunscreen products to two, very succinct words.  Well, there will be a little bit of description because let’s face it- I’m a little on the wordy side.
I’m going to focus on our 5 cosmeceuticals. If you want to know which of our Sun Whip’s is right for you, then go to this very aptly named post, “Which Sun Whip is right for You?”
PM Anti-Age: Anti-Age, Brighten.
Our PM is the most fully loaded of all of our anti-aging cosmeceuticals.  If you think about the aging process in the skin, there are multiple factors that contribute to it.  Our PM Anti-age tackles all of them conceptually at a cellular level.  This is definitely our best all-round anti-ager. Its second benefit of brightening comes from the use of Turmeric.  It’s nice because while the other ingredients are working behind-the-scenes, the turmeric is delivering visible results with a brighter more luminous complexion. 
H20 Hydration: Hydrate and Calm
Our H20 is still an anti-aging moisturizer.  It’s got actives like Tetrapeptides, Resveratrol and Ectoins that all help to keep collagen, elastin and epidermal cells in tip top working shape.  However, they all also help calm inflammation at a cellular level and at a visible level in terms of redness and irritation.  I think of our H20 like a down comforter for the face- it shields you from the sometimes, big bad world outside and keeps you cozy and comfortable within. 
Nu-Shroom Hydrafill Serum: Plump and Hydrate
Serums by their very nature target their actives past the superficial dead layer of the skin to the living epidermis below. Our Nu-Shroom is excellent and delivers instant hydration past the skin’s surface, which is why it plumps as well.  The best visual I can offer is of a raisin regaining its moisture to go back to its initial grape shape. 
Exfoliant Reveal: Smooth and Soften
Our Exfoliant dissolves the dead layer of skin that we all have. Twenty minutes after applying our Exfoliant I will give my face a gentle massage just using my fingertips. Typically, you will feel the dead skin pill away and come off.  I do not think that anything works as well as an exfoliant with a good amount of glycolic acid in keeping the skin smooth.
Emblica Light and Bright: Lighten and Brighten
All of our product names give clues as to what they do, but this one is pretty overt as to what it is about right in its name.  We designed this product to treat pigment in all of its incarnations.  For those with hyperpigmentation or melasma, this product works to halt those overworking melanocytes in their tracks.  It also tells overly reactive skin to calm down, which also stops you skin from over producing melanin as a defensive mechanism.  We added Turmeric to this formula as well to help provide overall brightening as well but it does not have the same anti-aging focus as our PM Anti-Age.  

You may be wondering how do you fit in all these little gems with their different benefits into one 24 hour period.  I always say that it’s great to start with a regular regimen- one that you have set for yourself, hopefully with the help of a great skincare consultant.  However, once you get to know your skin, understand its needs, desires and dreams- it’s about going beyond the regimen.  You learn to treat it symptomatically based on current pressing needs but then also be strategic about your long term anti-aging plan.  

Of course, we are always here to be your skincare sherpas- if you need us!  Write us or comment below and we will do our ever lovingly best.  

All the best,

Sara Dudley


5 Out of the Box Beauty Necessities

Since CyberDERM only has 7 products in its line, we tend to go against the prevailing marketing trend of offering a thousand products per category to cater to very specific needs.  For example, we have one great moisturizer (H20 Hydration) that serves a lot of skincare needs as opposed to one each for oily/combination skin, dry skin, flakey on Tuesdays skin, why-does-my-skin-hate-me skin.  In other words, we make one great product and explore its many functionalities. This month I thought I would share some of my favourite beauty staples that do double, sometimes triple, duty for out-of-the-box functions. 
Hair conditioner as shaving cream
Emblica Light and Bright-Multi-Tasker
Our Favourite CyberDERM Multi-Taskers
I’m never quite sure if everyone knows of this trick.  It just seems so self-evident but then I find someone that doesn’t use it and I get to change lives.  I’ve personally never found a shaving cream that actually hydrates the skin and softens the hair.  It lacks the right mix of humectants or something.  Hair conditioner on the other hand, does not foam but it is the best platform for shaving.  It helps get a nice close shave with a sharp razor. It reduces the chance for shaving bumps and it leaves your skin very soft afterwards.

Mepiform bandaids as pimple patches

If you have never heard of a Mepiform bandaid, I advise you to ask your pharmacist (or they are available at  Unfortunately, sometimes you are forced to buy the whole box of bandaids, rather than in the individual sheets and they are expensive.  I think it a worthwhile one-time investment because the box will last you a lifetime and these really are miracle band-aids.  Typically, you use them on any wound that has largely healed (i.e. does not have any more liquids oozing from it).  It’s your best chance for reducing scarring so I put them on burns when they are still pink, blisters, new cuts or surgical scars etc. I also put them on the odd pimple. It’s skin coloured and very thin so it keeps it out of sight.  I’ll even venture outside with it on since it’s pretty minimal and there is only a small chance someone will tell you that there is something on your face. It also helps heal, stops you from picking and keeps it from leaving a brown mark if you are like me with pigmented/reactive skin. A lot of fuss for a pimple? Maybe, but for our face, what is not worth the expense?

BB cream and primer as under-eye concealer

I’m well known for having what I call panda-sized dark under-eye circles.  It’s mostly allergy based so I have given up trying to lighten the area with anything topical.  I really need the camouflage though otherwise people tell me that I look tired- really tired.  My best solution to date is to use the Jane Iredale BB-cream as my concealer because no amount of ‘Touche D’Eclats’ are going to cut it. If your under-eye is at all crêpey then just mix the BB cream with some primer to stop it from settling into lines.  Dust or apply your favourite foundation all over to blend.

Emblica Light and Bright for Keratosis Pilaris

Keratosis Pilaris (KP) is one of the banes of my existences!  While vacationing in Arizona, I got what looked like a rash down the sides of both of my arms with red, irritated looking bumps.  I’ve had it every since and it’s lovingly called KP.  Once you get KP, it really becomes about managing it.  I think mine is related to heat since it even tends to flare during hot yoga.  I used to have to use hydrocortisone on it everyday but I have found that our Emblica Light and Bright does an even better job of keeping it in check.  Aside from controlling pigment, our Emblica Light and Bright is a very good anti-inflammatory so it takes the red out of the bumps.  To keep my arms relatively smooth, I use our Exfoliant Reveal.  It’s certainly not a cure but it’s been one of the best helps I have found to date.

 Ectoins Mineral Balm for everything

Some might be frustrated that I am bringing up our Ectoins Mineral Balm since it is not carried on our website anymore nor through any of our retail partners.  In all honesty, it was created as quite a niche product for post-laser surgery and we felt that it was not worthwhile to update from our old packaging.  However, if after this post, you feel a serious hankering for some Ectoins Mineral Balm- just call us.  We still make a limited quantity for our sister company Laserderm and have it in an easy trial size too so you don’t have to buy the big 50 ml bottle (a little goes a long way!).  Our Ectoins Mineral Balm is the equivalent of the father of the bride’s Windex from My Big Fat Greek Wedding.  I put it on everything!  Dry heels- balm it! Sunburn- (what happened!)- balm it! Cracked lips, dry cuticles, patchy elbows, sore nose from a cold…balm it.  Of course, I don’t say that it in airport security lines but I always keep a little tub of it on me.  It should be noted that it contains the most expensive raw material that we purchase in it (Ectoins, which can also be found in our H20 Hydration).  So using it on your feet is a little bit like using Veuve Cliquot for bubble bath but many find it worth it.
Do you have any unorthodox beauty tips? Well share them- we all can use as much help as possible.
All the best,
Sara Dudley


A Thirty Something’s Medicine Cabinet

 I have my 30th birthday approaching any day now and I feel pretty fortunate that I am generally happy with the way my skin looks.  You start to see some of those first signs of aging in your late twenties with some initial wrinkles starting to creep up, some discolouration, more overall dryness.  You are also just less able to abuse your skin- you can’t hide long late nights anymore. Fortunately, I feel like my skincare routine is keeping me in good stead.  I’ve finally found the right balance between dewy and oily, between soft and over-exfoliated, between treating my skin and being raw and irritated. 
So for anyone who might like to know- here is what my actual skincare routine looks like.  You might think that CyberDERM products are heavily represented and that is true.  It’s a result of extreme bias, convenience and pure devotion.
1.     Tata Harper Regenerating Cleanser, $75

 I’ve never been a fan of complicated cleansers before- I was strictly a Cetaphil advocate. I thought keep it simple for simple functions and save your products and your dollars for more important things.  However, when we were first looking into bringing Tata Harper into the store, I tried this cleanser and it changed my mind. The analogy for this cleanser is like  getting a freshly mixed pina colada in a high end resort. There is no gunky pre-mixes involved- every ingredient is fresh, pronounceable and from this earth.  It softens and exfoliates my skin so I don’t have to work as hard with other products for the same result.

2.     Nu-Shroom Hydrafill Serum, $95
I was the first guinea pig for this product (no actual guinea pigs or bunnies were tested on- we promise!) so I have been using it since December.  I’m not really its target demographic.  It works wonders on dry, mature skin with some wrinkling and gives a real instant oomph.  I like it for its long-term hydration though.  I’ve been using it in the mornings because it gives such a smooth surface for my make-up. Your skin looks dewy and catches the light around my orbital bone especially.  I have not been using a make-up highlighter because it has been doing such a good job.
3.     Every Morning Sun Whip SPF 25, $38
I’m pretty religious about using my sunscreen every day- I just make it my routine so I don’t really think about it.  With other sunscreens before I joined the company, I’d get turned off by the smell and the texture.  There is a dissonance between smelling like the beach when you are heading for the office in the dead of winter.  Aside from the no-sunscreen smell, I also like that our sunscreen actually feels good for my skin aside from its protective qualities.  Zinc is such a powerful anti-inflammatory- I find it soothing and helps calm any redness.  Our formula also does not feel occlusive so I don’t worry about it exacerbating my mild acne.
1.     Whenever I come home, I typically cleanse my face right away.  I just think you should get the city off of your skin with its dirt and pollution.
2.     H20 Hydration or Emblica Light and Bright, $60 and $70 respectively
CyberDERM PM Anti-AgeAfter cleansing, I immediately apply either one of these products as an after sun treatment.  I feel like your skin gets in an excited state by the sun and pollution. Imagine all of those wandering electrons in the form of free radicals .I like to quiet down these reactions to zero with a product with strong and stable anti-oxidants.  Both products have superb anti-oxidants to calm the skin and just generally soothe it as well.  For this purpose, you can use the products interchangeably and is about your personal preference.  They have other primary purposes though that have specific benefits to them otherwise. 
3.     PM Anti-Age, $115
I should be getting back into my routine of using a prescription retinoid at night.  I’ve been using one since I was 13 for acne. It’s hard once you have stopped to start again.  It’s like exercise- you have to get over the initial hump and then it is good for you in the long run.  I’ve been pretty happy with just using my PM Anti-Age though.  It just gives my  skin tone a bright even look to it.  My fiancé is hooked on it for the same reason.  We’ll see- for now I am liking my PM just fine. 
1.     Tata Harper Regenerating Body Oil
I’ve been forgoing my olive oil bath so that I don’t have to deal with a messy tub.  This is a lovely blend of oils and feels luxurious but not greasy.
2.     Exfoliant Reveal and Emblica Light and Bright
I still suffer from Keratosis Pilaris (red bumps) on my arms and this combination has done a better job of keeping it at bay than more medicated versions.  The Exfoliant Reveal keeps my skin soft and the Emblica Light and Bright calms anti-inflammation for the red component and keeps them from developing into brown spots from the trauma. 

What does your regimen look like?  I don’t think it has to look that different when you’re 30 vs. 40 vs. 50.  The fundamentals are pretty similar and certainly if you focus on prevention- you have a lot less work ahead of you.  

All the best,

Sara Dudley