Meet Shamara Bondaroff, skincare specialist and founder of the SB Skin studio, located in NYC. Shamara grew up in a vegan and holistic home, which shaped her interest in health and natural beauty. She now passes her passion onto her customers at SB Skin, where the treatments follow a holistic approach using microcurrent facials. Shamara told us more about these treatments, as well as some of her beauty secrets and tips.
1. How did you become a facialist?
I was inspired to become a facialist when I discovered microcurrent technology. As friends started getting Botox and fillers, I was hesitant to do so because it felt contrary to how I’ve always cared for my skin, which was very holistically. Soon after discovering microcurrent and seeing how effective it was while also being non-invasive, I decided to become an esthetician, specifically a microcurrent specialist.
2. What kind of treatments do you offer to your clients?
We offer face and body treatments centered around microcurrent. Microcurrent is great from head to toe because it smooths, firms, lifts, tones, and aids in lymphatic drainage. Our facial is our most popular treatment, but clients love to get body treatments on the abdomen and butt.
We’ve also started offering Plasma Pen treatments, which I’m very excited about. Plasma Pen is the most effective non-surgical way to treat everything from sagging skin to scars to stretch marks, and it can be done on the face and body. The results are incredible, even after just one treatment.
3. What are the benefits of someone getting a facial and seeing a facialist regularly, over just having a skincare routine at home?
Well, most people don’t have a professional microcurrent machine in their home! The results clients get from our treatments really cannot be recreated with just skincare, or even with at-home devices. It’s also beneficial to have a professional esthetician look at your skin because they will see things that you may not.
4. What skin concerns do clients most often approach you with?
Most clients want overall rejuvenation; they want to look refreshed. Even my younger clients want their skin to be brighter and more even-toned. My older clients want all the anti-aging benefits microcurrent provides.
5. What are some of the most common skincare mistakes that you wish more people were aware of?
I see a lot of breakouts that can be prevented. Clean your phone with alcohol wipes regularly. If you are skipping shampoo and using dry shampoo more days than not, your hair could be causing breakouts, especially overnight. Try to keep it off your face while you sleep. Also, change your pillowcases often! Dirt and oil from your hair will go right from your pillowcases to your face and cause breakouts.
It’s very important to pay attention to your diet and how it affects your skin because it does. I have clients that know they will break out when they eat dairy. It causes inflammation. Also, coffee (caffeine) is a major dehydrator. Watching your skin’s reaction or eliminating things like this from your diet can make a difference.
6. What are your top 3 tips for taking good care of your skin?
Simple: SPF every day, adequate hydration and get enough quality sleep.
7. What ingredients do you wholeheartedly believe in?
Vitamin C for brightening and collagen-building abilities. Niacinamide for its many skin benefits, from restoring the skin’s lipid barrier to fighting signs of aging to reducing hyperpigmentation and more. I try to stay away from acids as I think people can go overboard with them and cause more harm than good. Lactic Acid is pretty gentle, though, while still giving the results people expect from AHAs.
8. What lifestyle habits do you have that keep your skin in top shape?
I drink a ton of water—almost a gallon a day! Hydration and proper diet really can't be compensated for with skincare products. Working out regularly is also great for that healthy skin glow. Sleep, too, of course, but now that I’m a mom I don’t get nearly enough of it!
9. Could you recommend some educational resources to people who want to learn more about ingredients and cosmetic formulations?
Here in the US, EWG is a great resource for researching ingredients and products. If someone wants to only use clean and natural beauty products, clean retailers like Follain, Credo and The Detox Market have a lot of useful ingredient information on their websites.
10. Describe your perfect self-care day.
This has changed tremendously since I became a mom. I used to think self-care was about getting a full day of things done for me. It was like 2 workouts a day, some sort of face or body treatment, a bathhouse with friends, and the list can go on. Now with having my daughter... If I made a salad for myself instead of eating her leftovers, plus manage to have a bath once or twice a week, I feel like I am winning. I learned to appreciate tremendously the little pockets of time. So, what used to be a 6-mile run pre-family, I welcome and honor the 3-mile run with the baby jogging stroller and know that was my self-care.
11. What are your favorite NUORI products to use on clients and why?
NUORI’s Supreme Moisture Mask is so soothing and nourishing even if your skin is not “dry”, per se. It’s like a facial in a bottle. I also use NUORIs Vital Eye Cream on almost every client. The texture is perfect and it's safe for even the most sensitive skin. Many clients end up buying it once they try it.
Follow Shamara and SB Skin on Instagram, at https://www.instagram.com/sb_skin/