Follow Friday + Nicki's Personal Updates: Week of August 10, 2012

Personal/Inspirational, Skin Care
The first six bottles of FutureDerm Time-Release Retinol 0.5 ever produced! I’m so excited!
The first six bottles of FutureDerm Time-Release Retinol 0.5 ever produced! I’m so excited!

It’s funny:  When I read books on dermatology, there is often so much information about retinoids.  And now that I’m devoting myself to inventing novel beauty products full-time (for at least a year, hopefully longer!), my life is again all about retinoids.

Our FutureDerm Time-Release Retinol 0.5 comes out on August 16.  It’s the earliest date I know we will have all of the inventory, ordering systems, and shipping materials in place.  I’m nervous and excited and scared and thrilled, all at the same time.  On the one hand, I know we have a great product, and I’m super proud of it.  I’ve been using it for three weeks and I’m ecstatic!  On the other hand, I’ve never released a product before, and I’m scared.  I just want for the readers to love it as much as I do, and for everything to run smoothly.

One trick I started to do this week was to make small changes.  One of my favorite books, The Compound Effect, is all about how small, seemingly insignificant changes every day are what really make a difference in your relationships, career, and health over time.  The author is the publisher of Success magazine, Darren Hardy, and he says small, positive daily habits developed early in life helped him become a millionaire by age 24 (source).  Not to mention help improve millions of lives by the time he was in his forties.  He’s truly one of my role models.

I’ve read his book before, but I follow him on Facebook, and the other day he posted the following status:

It’s time to WAKE UP and realize that the habits you indulge in could be compounding your life into repeated disaster. The slightest adjustments to your daily routines can dramatically alter the outcomes in your life. Again, I’m not talking about quantum leaps of change or a complete overhaul of your personality, character, and life. Supersmall, seemingly inconsequential adjustments can and will revolutionize everything.

This is me, before a recent presentation. I’ve found that waking up super early helps me stay calm and relaxed throughout the day, including before big presentations.

What I love about this philosophy is that it’s doable.  It’s not plausible for many of us to think, Oh, I could lose 25 pounds easily, but it is easy to think that we could switch out hamburgers and fries with fish and vegetables tonight for dinner.  Or to run tonight instead of watching an extra half hour of TV.

The biggest change for me since re-discovering this philosophy is getting up a little earlier. This sounds strange, but the world is just so clean before 7 AM.  Traffic is lighter.  Deadlines are relatively later. There are no e-mails or text messages coming in.  It’s just free, open space and time.

I love to sit, make some coffee, read some books, and write.  It’s amazing, much more invigorating than an extra hour of sleep.  I would even go so far as to say it’s the closest thing to meditation I can think of without actually meditating.  It’s really that peaceful.  And it helps for me to stay grateful, peaceful, centered, and even more relaxed throughout the day.  And who doesn’t love that?  🙂

Well, that’s all for now.  Please feel free to contact me on our Facebook page or Twitter anytime.

All the best,

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  • You are too kind to say that, Nicki! Thank you– I am deeply deeply flattered!

  • May

    Thanks so much for the suggestions, Nicki!

    Do you know if anyone has researched how much hydrocortisone would have to be applied cumulatively in order to cause permanent skin-thinning? Like you, I only apply when my skin reacts to something, but I’d like to know if I’ve already permanently damaged my skin!

    Also, do you have any suggestions for patch-testing? I’ve read suggestions to patch-test in the crook of one’s elbow, but the skin of my body is nowhere near as sensitive as the skin of my face is – and even my face varies in its level of sensitivity. For example, the patch of skin between my nose and my lips (is that called the upper lip? I always thought “upper lip” was, well, the top lip 😉 is far and away the most sensitive, whereas my forehead is the least sensitive.

    Thanks so much for detailing the business side of bringing Time-Release Retinol 0.5 to the public! I’d love to read a more comprehensive post about it. As a kid, I used to dream of founding my own company, but growing older made me more aware of the risks – and hence, well, scared (I’m pretty risk-averse, it turns out ;). So I’m perpetually in awe of entrepreneurs – and especially the ones who are women to boot! – who have the guts to put themselves out there and make their dreams a reality. Congratulations are very much in order. 🙂

  • @May – I’ve gotten hives a few times from my own sensitive skin, and testing products all the time doesn’t really help that much. That said, 1% hydrocortisone is the gold standard. And because you’re absolutely right that it does thin the skin, I limit use to as short a time as possible.

    Another agent that really helps include Avena sativa oat extract, found in Aveeno products. Their bath bar is about $3 and it is amazing for soothing the skin. I cleanse and it feels amazing. An even better source of the extract is the Dermatologica Oatmeal Facial; I use it all the time!

    Finally, when my skin is flared up, I also found Atopalm products to be very soothing. You can find them online very easily!

    As for the business side of things, I was very fortunate because I won a business competition at the University of Pittsburgh while I was a medical student at the university. And then I won another. Manufacturing is the most difficult part, but I was lucky to find laboratories/manufacturers I trust who would custom formulate. Anything is possible if you keep working at it hard enough! I’ll get into more detail if you’d like, just let me know.

    Hope this helps!

  • @Quinn – You’re welcome! I wish you much success too!

  • @Lola – You’re welcome! I’m always looking for different brands of argan oil to compare, so your post was a delight!

  • @Kaye – Aww, thanks! I’m honored to be your favorite health blogger! *dances* OK, as far as getting up early, one thing that works for me is to put my alarm clock on the other side of the room. Another is to think of someone I love, something I am looking forward to for that day, and something that I want to do in the distant future, and getting up. Because big things never happen if you sleep all day, even when you desperately want to! Hope that helps.

  • @Moxie – Aww thank you!

  • May

    I only recently started following your blog, but it has instantly become a must-read of mine. Given that I’m a new follower, I don’t know if you’ve been documenting your efforts to develop your own product, but if not, I’d love to hear more about you brought your product from inception to fruition, as aside from skincare, business is also another ardent love of mine. 🙂

    I also have a question for you (don’t we all! ;): I believe I read that you have sensitive skin, as do I. Given that you must test a lot of skincare products, when you have an adverse reaction to something, how do you heal your skin quickly? I’ve been using 1% OTC hydrocortisone, but I recently found out that hydrocortisone thins the skin (eek!). On the other hand, I haven’t found anything else nearly so effective at healing my skin pretty much overnight. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thanks so much!

  • It must be so exhilarating to see all of your hard work come to fruition! Congratulations and I wish you much success!

    PS-Thanks for the Follow Friday nod! What an honor that you noticed me! 🙂

  • Congratulations– this is such exciting news!! I can’t wait to try your new retinol– as it turns out the one that I have been using for a few years has been discontinued!!

    Thank you so much for including my Cleopatra’s Choice Argan Oil review in your Friday Follow– I am very honored and humbled that you even know about my blog– let alone thought to feature it!! xx

  • Kaye

    Ahhh! I’m so excited for the retinol!! You’re my all-time favorite health blogger and I trust that you’ve created an excellent product!

    And what a coincidence…I decided last week that I wanted to become an early riser. The problem is that my entire life, I’ve been a snoozer. But now, I’m trying to rise around 6am-ish on the first alarm ring. Ambitious, I know. Unfortunately, I’ve been failing at it for the past week. Any tips on how you became an early riser?

  • Congratulations!! So excited for you on the upcoming launch of Future Derm’s Retinol!! xo

  • @Anna – Aww thanks! It will be $49.95 or $54.95, but we can offer it for $39.95 at a special introductory price. The more sales we get, the lower we can offer it 🙂 I’m going to try to be as honest and straightforward as possible about the pricing and price strategy as possible with our readers!

  • anna

    Don’t know if this has already been asked but where is it gonna be stocked and how much will it cost? PS congratulations BIG THINGS AHEAD!

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