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LED Light Therapy and Last-Minute Emails: Co-Founder Annie Ho’s Eclectic Nighttime Routine

On mindfully powering down for the day:

The first step for winding down is to put my dogs to bed.  That is a rewarding process in itself because when I give them their bedtime snack, I can see their satisfied faces.  

I usually shower before sleeping and sometimes I put on a face mask before that. The face mask gives me some “extra time” so I usually use this time to do my Buddhist prayers.  In recent months, because my dogs are getting old and sickly, I do the Bhaiṣajyaguru (Medicine Buddha) prayers for 3 rounds (324 times).  When I have my face mask on, I can lie on the bed and activate my LED light therapy machine.  I usually use Red Light Therapy, which reduces inflammation and Blue Light Therapy, which kills acne-causing bacteria.  Regarding face masks, I like to keep things simple.  I believe that hydration and collagen are the foundation of beautiful skin so I pick pure hyaluronic acid or type III collagen face masks.  This is a great way to hit two birds with one stone.  I can literally meditate to calm my anxious mind and make myself beautiful with the LED and face mask.  I have been researching rejuvenation LED devices for the vagina and will probably incorporate this to my routine pretty soon. 

When I finish everything, I usually do some reading, mostly nonfiction, around topics of psychology or biology.  Reading typically makes me feel sleepy but sometimes I’m so engrossed that I just stay up and read for another hour. 

And, yes, I do a final sweep of my instant messaging apps to make sure I reply to everything before heading to bed.  If I don’t do that, I feel like there will be something lingering in my mind that gives me unnecessary anxiety.  Since the inception of Antevorta, my cofounder Sara Jane and I will oftentimes message each other until bedtime and I enjoy these late-night chats.  

My holy grail skincare products:

Elevatione Lifting Creation Facial Serum ($380)

 

I try new skincare products from time to time because I think skin conditions are sensitive to season, mood, and other psychosomatic conditions.  Having said that, perhaps the brand that has stuck the most with me throughout the years is this Israeli brand Elevatione.  I’ve tried several of their products but have used their Lifting Creation Facial Serum twice daily, consistently, for years.  I like the texture of the serum; it makes my skin feel silky to touch, and I’ve noticed it helps with skin tightening—I really think my skin elasticity is quite good for my age.  

Another ingredient that I have fallen in love with this year is CICA, short for Centella Asiatica, a TCM herb that is known for anti-inflammatory properties.  Because of the high prevalence (around 50%) of women with sensitive skin and the efficacy and safety of CICA, it has become a popular ingredient, especially in Japanese and Korean cosmetics.  I have been using CICAPLAST B5 cream from La Roche-Posay and Tigeraid Cica Cream from Kose.  These two have friendly prices and are highly recommended by Asian skincare enthusiasts. 

La Roche Posay Cicaplast Balm B5 Cream

Kose Tigeraid Cica Repair Cream

On boosting my circulation while I sleep:

Per TCM, cold and damp are sources of practically all evils for women in particular. I know I have these issues because my hands and feet are always cool, my lip color is dark, and I am constantly fatigued. Thankfully, I have a plethora of TCM based products that boost my blood circulation in various ways. I apply a Lingzhi mushroom essential oil to increase blood circulation and boost the red tone of my lips. I have this sticker packed with herbs that I use sometimes on my feet before bed. These herbs increase blood circulation, warm my feet, and improve my sleep quality. In the morning, when I rip off the stickers, they will be completely wet.  I’m always amazed at how much excess fluid can be sucked out by these herbs.  And, yes, I do feel more lightweight the next day. It's essentially an overnight detox, and sometimes I also notice that my skin is more luminous in the morning.

The wellness advice I always try to live by:

I believe that a woman’s beauty radiates from within—this inner aura is a combination of elegance, refinement, temperament, and a persistence for quality.  It takes courage to experience new things, gather learnings, and make adjustments.  It takes perseverance and patience to wait for flowers to bloom and fruits to ripe.  It takes curiosity to acquire knowledge.  All of these things manifest into self-confidence.

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LED Light Therapy and Last-Minute Emails: Co-Founder Annie Ho’s Eclectic Nighttime Routine
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