B&B! Q&A: Candice Gardner of The International Dermal Institute

Candice Gardner picCandice Gardner is the Education Curriculum Manager of the International Dermal Institute. The IDI has 38 training centres worldwide, and have educated over 75,000 Professional Skin Therapists in its 25 year history. The Dermalogica brand was developed in tandem with IDI, and by the Institute’s founder, Jane Wurwand — and as always, is at the forefront of developing new ways to attend to our skin. I took some facetime with Gardner, specifically in relation to the brand’s Overnight Repair Serum, which is very, very popular in B&B HQ.

What’s so great about serums?
Serums are maximum impact products. Due to the increased level of actives used in serums — ingredients that improve the skin’s function —  change can often be seen within the first few uses, allowing you to target skin issues quickly. The formulations are designed to penetrate deeper into the skin, and so have a different texture to traditional moisturisers.

And what’s so great about using a serum at night?
The skin naturally regenerates at night, as it does not have to focus on the task of daily defence from the sun and the environment. With many serums focused towards boosting skin regeneration and repair, using your product at night may facilitate a better result.

Another key reason for using a serum at night is that, because your skin is not defending, your skin’s barrier is reduced. This means it is easier to deliver high concentrations of ingredients into the skin. But beware! This also means skin can become dehydrated through the night, so restoring lost lipids and providing protection is a key reason not to neglect your night time regimen.

I very much like the notion of working on my skin’s condition in my sleep! How soon can we see results with Overnight Repair Serum?
I love this product, because for me, the result is immediate. As soon as I wake in the morning I can feel the difference. The Argan Oil and plant oil blends are brilliant at replenishing the barrier. I have such dehydrated skin, I really notice the smooth softness that follows a night with this serum.

In general, you can expect to Overnight Repair Serumsee improvements in 2-4 weeks.

Overnight Repair Serum uses essential oils — how did we ever discover that they are great for our skin?
The use of essential oils dates back to the beginning of time. But the priests and apothecaries who used herbs, plants and oils relied largely on knowledge passed down and experience rather than substantiated science.

Modern aromatherapy is attributed to Rene-Maurice Gattefossé who switched from studying aromatics to medicinal use after he burned his hand in the laboratory and plunged it into a beaker of neat Lavender, to discover it not only soothed the burn but also healed the skin rapidly.

The Austrian biochemist, Madam Marguerite Maury, is probably the best known in the cosmetic field for her work in the early 20th century studying the benefits of essential oils on the condition of the skin.

I noticed that one can mix this with a lotion. Could you explain why this useful?
Some consumers are used to wearing cream or lotion style products that provide additional hydration to the skin. Some individuals might find that this relieves the characteristic tight feeling associated with dehydrated skin more quickly. So applying your serum and then layering up with your moisturiser is a personal preference rather than essential.

Others just love the smell, and the softening effect of the serum so much, that they add a few drops into their daytime moisturiser to boost skin improvements.

I personally am finding that my skin is reacting badly to the cold weather. Help!
Harsh weather and cold winds can leave skin chapped, irritated and vulnerable. Additional protective support for your skin’s barrier will help skin cope. Try barrier repairing products or opt for a richer moisturiser than you currently use.

I am a great fan of layering up. Add an additional layer of protection to your daily regimen by adding a serum or booster under your moisturiser or supplement your moisturiser with weather shielding layer. Top ingredients to look out for include skin smoothing silicones, emollient and comforting Shea Butter or protective non-occlusive microcrystalline waxes that act as a shield.

It might also be helpful to switch to more gentle formulas designed for when your skin feels more sensitive, reduce exfoliation (abrading or peeling vulnerable skin is a recipe for disaster), and look for products that use colloidal oatmeal which will heal and calm irritated skin.


Overnight Repair Serum: €64.85/£56/$60


Ha! Was googlin’ prices and found myself. {If only it was that easy!}{Maybe it is!} Anyway, here’s my review!

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