Maiah Holbrook is into all things health and wellness! As a certified personal trainer, wellness coach, and lagree fitness instructor, Maiah spends her days helping others improve their overall wellbeing. She has a bachelor’s degree in nutrition, and her latest obsession is skincare and how food affects our skin. Check out Maiah’s personalized nutrition guide here.
Shelby Brook Bishop is a fitness professional and nutritionist based out of Denver, Colorado. She has a degree in kinesiology and intensively studies nutrition for her meal prep business where she’s the head chef in charge. Shelby advises everyone that will listen: “Rather than hopping on the prescription train, I challenge you to build an intuitive mind-body connection and draw the necessary correlation between the food you eat, your mental clarity, your physical condition” AND the condition of your skin. Check out Shelby’s nutrition guide here.
T+t: How can face Mapping help us identify issues going on in other organs of our bodies?
Maiah: Our bodies are always trying to communicate with us! Face Mapping is like a daily status update of what organs are doing well, or not so well. It's so important to keep track of your breakouts and how they change based on your habits.
Shelby: It never occurred to me, until about three years ago, that those "random" breakouts weren't so random after all. I learned a valuable lesson: breakouts are the bodies way of communicating with you! Now, it's important to note that I'm not a dermatologist (I'm a nutritionist), and I wasn't fully aware that your skin is in-fact, "double-sided." Meaning, what is going on inside of your body can be reflected on the outside of your body (your skin).
First, it's essential to know that the skin absorbs everything; the sun, pollutants, dirt, your lotions, any fragrances, cleansers (even foaming), and that clay mask that you love too much. Yes, they smell fabulous but are usually full of toxic chemicals, and they inevitably throw a wrench into our bodies natural hormonal cycle.
Your skin is affected by what you put on it and what you put in your body. We use a tool to find the root cause - face mapping!
Face Mapping is an analysis that attempts to compare and distinguish which areas of the face correlate with what organs or body systems. Face mapping allows us to become aware of how our skin is connected with the rest of the body, but it also helps us figure out which areas of the body that are not doing so hot.
T+t: What zone do you struggle with the most? How do you keep it in check?
Maiah: I am currently in a great place with my skin! First time! But, when I was suffering from an undiagnosed gluten intolerance, my problem area was my cheeks. Rightfully so, my digestive system was in complete shambles, and I had tons of inflammation.
Removing gluten did wonders, but repairing my gut was what stopped the breakouts. I then, and still take a collagen supplement and probiotics daily. If there is ever any cross-contamination, I can count on a breakout.
T+t: A breakout on the cheeks could be a signal for low absorption of nutrients and issues with the stomach and colon—what causes this low absorption, and how can one combat it?
Maiah: I have dealt with low absorption for awhile. After nine months with undiagnosed gluten intolerance, I suffered from leaky gut, which is just one common cause. There could be low stomach acid, dehydration causing the mucus layer of the stomach to be thin, an overgrowth of harmful bacteria.
I would recommend a diet clean up, removing things like sugar, dairy, soy, wheat, and corn, these can commonly irritate the gut. I would also recommend adding in foods/supplements that help heal the gut and give it break. Things like fermented foods, lots of dark leafy greens (cooked), organic bone broth, room temperature or warm liquids, collagen peptides, probiotics, and digestive enzymes before meals.
T+t: Everyone and their sister struggles with hormonal acne on their chin and jawline; can change to diet help or do we need to see our gyno ASAP?
Maiah: Yes! Changes in your diet like removing foods that cause excess inflammation like dairy, fried foods, excess sugar (all the things we crave) can significantly improve hormonal acne. Also, being diligent with your skincare routine around that time of the month can minimize your breakouts.
Our kidneys go through a lot trying to process pollution, poor diet choices, and stress nonstop, which may further exacerbate the dark circles under our eyes (and sleep deprivation, of course). Is getting more hours of sleep the only way to decrease their appearance? (Speak to diet and tools that can be used)
While it is the most important, it isn't the only tool in our arsenal when it comes to dark circles. I recommend identifying that there are no deficiencies. Iron deficiency could be the reason behind your dark circle. Then I recommend checking in with your current diet, limiting foods with high sodium and sugar content. Lastly, helping your body get rid of toxins by taking a supplement like Chlorophyll could help with dark circles.
Shelby: The chin is most connected with hormonal (endocrine system) and stomach imbalances. Now granted, "hormones" are the illegitimate stepchild and are blamed for everything. But what if I told you that everything from what you eat & drink, to what you put on your skin affects your hormones?
Here are three simple things that Shelby suggests if your chin is breakout central:
- Cut the dairy - American dairy is full of hormones (you might as well be taking birth control) & it's a proven to cause inflammation (this literally works for 99% of my clients)
- Check your skincare for chemicals that could be throwing off your hormones. For starters, ditch any products with these ingredients:
- Non-Natural Fragrances - Essential oils like those in TAYLOR + tess products are the way to go
- Artificial Dyes & Synthetic Colors
- Parabens, which are typically used as a preservative in some skincare products (but not in T+t!)
- Consistency is key, and one week won't do the trick. I recommend committing to dietary or fabric changes for 4-6 weeks to be thorough in your investigation of the problem's source.
T+t: What changes to diet would you recommend for someone with a breakout on their forehead? (Digestion + liver)
Maiah: Forehead breakouts are the worst! I would recommend adding a daily probiotic with at least 10 billion cells with strains such as Bifidobacterium bifidum and bifidobacterium breve.
Adding in a liver detox supplement like Milk Thistle could also be beneficial!
T+t: If my cracked lips are not from harsh weather or dehydration, what's the deal?
Maiah: I could never say definitively. I would recommend checking for an allergy to your toothpaste, mouthwash, or any other products that come close to your lip area if could also be a case of vitamin deficiency with either vitamin B, zinc or iron.
T+t: Lastly, what skin maintenance recommendations do you have for people who work out frequently throughout the week?
Maiah: I recommend trying to complete your workouts make up free (not always possible). If that isn't an option for you, be sure to double cleanse post-workout and at night. Somedays I'm booked and busy, so my make up has been on through client sessions and my own. I try to oil cleanse and regular cleanse (with ‘in the Buff’) my face and get all the build-up out of my pores!