Tashika Gomes


How to maintain fabulous skin at any age

Some may say I’m too young to talk about aging, wrinkles, or sun damage, but I’ve always believed in being proactive when it comes to taking care of my skin. As the old adage goes, prevention is always better than cure.

I’m slowly creeping up on my 30s and I’ve started to notice the first signs of aging: bags under my eyes that don’t disappear with a good night’s rest and fine lines on my forehead. I’ve always had a nightly routine of moisturizing my face, neck, hands, and feet – the places I’ve been told that show the signs of aging first – but I realize that I’m going to have to be more diligent when it comes to protecting my skin. I’ve never opted for the expensive skin-care products, but instead stick with more traditional creams, ointments, and homemade remedies.

Fight sun exposure

I’m usually extra careful when it comes to being exposed to the sun for too long, and with summer fast approaching, it’s vital to be as vigilant as possible. As much as you need a dose of vitamin D, overexposing yourself to get an enviable golden tan causes the skin’s natural elastin to break down, causing wrinkles, sun spots, and even cancer.

Finding the right sunscreen is important. The key is not necessarily finding the highest SPF, but it’s important to look for a sunscreen that has multi-spectrum protection, including UVA and UVB. Once you’ve found it, use it and use it often, even in the winter when the UV ray index can still be high.
It’s easy to feel inundated with the number of options available to slow down the appearance of aging and revitalize your skin. Finding the right products or procedures for you is based on very individual criteria. However, there are certain things that are applicable to everyone at any age, such as regular facials, which can be performed at home if you don’t have time for a trip to the spa.

Diminish fine lines and wrinkles

If you’d like to pursue more aggressive options to curb the appearance of aging, then injections can be a great choice, instead of going the more invasive route. The most popular injectable is still Botox Cosmetic, which is a purified protein comprised of botulinum toxin type A; it relaxes contractions in certain facial muscles to diminish wrinkles and fine lines. However, many women dislike the severe effects of this product, which leaves some faces looking unnaturally smooth, taut, and, ultimately, expressionless.

For this reason, other injectables have become increasingly popular. One such product is Restylane, a natural filler that restores hyaluronic acid in the skin, which is similar to our body’s own naturally occurring hyaluronic acid. It can be used to decrease the look of wrinkles, create fuller lips, or rejuvenate the skin to keep your face looking refreshed, but not frozen. While they’re not permanent, injectable results can last for up to one year.

The power of makeup

Finally, when it comes to makeup, less will usually give you a more youthful appearance. As you age, start using oil-based cosmetics, as the powered options can settle rather than gliding over your face, which emphasizes lines and wrinkles rather than disguising them.

It’s inevitable that my skin will change as I grow older. However, by taking steps to prevent further damage, using specialized products that curb visible signs of aging, and choosing the right cosmetics for my skin, I know that these changes won’t stop me from looking fabulous.

Follow Tashika on Twitter at @tashikagomes.

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Men are not the only perpetrators of workplace harassment

In a new study by Queens School of Business, 57% of working Canadians have experienced or witnessed workplace harassment, which is defined as “an upsetting comment or conduct against a worker in a workplace that is known or ought reasonably to be known to be unwelcome; it may include bullying, intimidating or offensive communications, isolation, hostile non-verbal displays, or sharing offensive pictures or materials.” Even more surprising are the number of female perpetrators.

According to this research, based on a survey of 1505 Canadians, 30% of women are harassed by other women, 47% of women are harassed by men, and 23% by a mixed-gender group.  For men, 53% of them are victimized by other men, 32% are harassed by a mixed- gender group, and in 15% of the cases men were harassed by women.

“It’s really shocking how prevalent this [harassment] is throughout the Canadian working population,” says Jana L. Raver, Ph.D. who is an associate professor at Queen’s School of Business.

It is typical to think of males as harassers, and although in most cases men are the perpetrators, what this study shows is the prevalence of females as harassers. Previously, there wasn’t much research done with a focus of females as harassers, but within the last ten years, perspectives on the issue have shifted and there’s more acute awareness of what constitutes harassment. The newer and more comprehensive legislations may also be reflective of the higher statistical findings.

The research shows that in cases where a woman is being the perpetrator, she is far more likely to choose another woman as her victim, but it also reveals that women are twice as likely as men to report harassment that comes from another woman.

The term “workplace harassment” was and is often used to refer specifically to sexual or gender related harassment, targeted at females by males in the workplace, but over the last few years the discourse has shifted and what is deemed as harassment is much more comprehensive.

In 2009, Ontario’s Occupational Health and Safety Act was amended with respect to violence and harassment in the workplace, and other matters, adding to the definition of “workplace harassment” to also mean engaging in a course of vexatious comment or conduct against a worker in a workplace that is known or ought reasonably to be known to be unwelcome.”

This change came about after the recent surge of media attention on the issue of bullying and has influenced changes in the workplace environment around the globe. Due to this recent change in the definition of what consitutes harassment it has yet to be seen whether increased attention to the problem will have a positive impact on these trends.

“I love that we’re talking about it and raising consciousness about the issue and I really hope that we continue to have these discussions and find ways to just make it culturally unacceptable,” says Dr. Raver.

Canada has been proactive in bringing about awareness but there’s still much progress to be made. Companies need to take initiatives further than just putting policies in place. Leaders should also be trained in interpersonal relational skills and be equipped in recognizing and dealing with cases of harassment.

If you are a victim of harassment, Dr. Raver advises to initially give the bully the benefit of the doubt, but if the problem persists you should then follow your organization’s reporting procedures and be vigilant in holding your employers accountable, since it is their responsibility that the issue is resolved.