Master esthetician Joanna Czech has been in the business for 34 years, and has a scientist’s knowledge of skincare—not to mention an impressive roster of high-profile clients who regularly get “czeched”—to prove it. We spoke with her about the importance of skincare to overall health, her own daily ritual.
Why is skincare so important?
“Twenty-five percent of your body’s immune system is contained within the skin. It is our largest organ. It regulates body temperature and acts as a gatekeeper by protecting all of our organs. When it is unbalanced and not taken care of, its abilities are weakened."
So that would include the skin on our body as well?
“Yes, we worry about what we put on our face, but we put whatever on our body, and it’s our biggest surface. Treat it as you would the face. Even the simple act of applying product is beneficial. The motion of application increases blood flow, so hemoglobin carries more oxygen into the tissue."
What is your skin ritual?
“The morning is quite simple. I don’t always use cleanser. Sometimes I just rinse my face and then I always apply toner and mix my moisturizer with Costa Brazil face oil, I like that extra oil. At my age a little shine goes a long way. It hides some skin imperfections like fine lines and enlarged pores. I have stage 1 rosacea that comes and goes. If I wake up with a red bump, I mix Costa Brazil with some Clé de Peau foundation, and create my own tinted moisturizer. This is what I consider my makeup, as generally I don’t wear any. My night time routine is more elaborate. I never go to bed without washing my face and body. I believe in my saying 'don't bring the street to your sheets.' At night I switch products often as I am always testing new ones, but I always cleanse, tone, use my chosen serums, and moisturize. Then I catch up on a show or read, and use my facial massager, which is very 'Netflix friendly.' I don’t like to spend too much time in front of a mirror."
What are some simple tips to improve skin health?
“Shower at night. Rinse off the street before you go to bed. And then apply your products. The skin is 60% more apt to absorb products during this time of rest. Use SPF during the day if you are going to be in the sun for more than 20-30 minutes. I think SPF 30 is the maximum you need to use, but you need to make sure you are reapplying as necessary. And an intuitive diet is key. If you eat a lot of spicy, salty foods, or have too much dairy or sugar, it will effect your skin sooner or later.”
What is your criteria for beauty products?
“It’s going to sound shallow, but initially it’s the packaging that draws my eye to a certain product. I like glass bottles, as opposed to plastic for obvious reasons. Then I read the ingredients, if something doesn't make sense scientifically, I run away. Consistency and scent are also important factors. If the fragrance doesn't agree with me, I don't go further. Then I want to know the founder's story. I like when there’s an interesting backstory, more so than them just whipping up something in grandma’s basement. And finally, I try the product myself. I’m a good tester, because I’m very reactive.”
What do you love about Costa Brazil?
“I love every single detail of Costa Brazil, starting with the glass bottle and the rubber base that doesn’t slip out of your hands. It has a faint scent which I find very fresh. What’s also very intriguing is the ingredient Kaya, which runs throughout the line. It’s a superfood, full of Vitamin E and magnesium and protein, which is the main builder of collagen. It sets it apart from any other product. And a facial oil that can act as a serum is genius. It’s hydrating, and it makes your skin glow, without feeling greasy. The face and body oils are just a pleasure to have on your skin. They create a comforting, luxurious experience.”