Frequently Asked Questions

These are the questions you ask us most often, you ask about expertise, knowledge, experience, chemo skin, radiation damaged skin as well as ingredients and definitions - the answers are here. If they are not, please ask.

Questions often asked about skincare and cancer

Our products

About Jennifer Young

Who is Jennifer Young?

Jennifer Young is an associate member of the Royal Society of Medicine, she has a BSc(Hons) in Biology and is an experienced Micro-biologist, qualified and practicing Nutritional Therapist, a lecturer in Nutrition and Biomedicine, a qualified Aromatherapist, Beauty Therapist and Product Formulator. She has two post graduate qualifications in health related fields and has been active in medical research. She combines the knowledge from all of these areas and applies them to your skin. Her results are astounding.

Jennifer studied Nutrition at the College of Naturopathic Medicine (CNM)  and uses her nutritional knowledge to inform her skincare formulations. Jennifer’s expert comments are often seen in National Newspapers and magazines and Jennifer’s work has been featured in titles, including, The Daily Mail, The Daily Mirror, The Daily Express, My Healthy Living, Women’s Weekly, The Health Store Magazine and Predictions.

Jennifer works directly with many groups that support cancer patients, giving skin care and beauty advice. Such groups include, Womb Cancer Support UK and University Hospital North Staffs Cancer Centre. Jennifer answers specific skin care queries via her Twitter account @jenniferskin

How did Jennifer Young develop on these products?

We didn't do this on our own. We listened to cancer patients, cancer survivors and cancer care specialists. We took advice from lead nursing staff about the ingredients that we shouldn't use, we did lots of research about the best ingredients to use and we tried and tried our products. We asked others to try them and we listened when we were told about very special and very specific skin care needs.

What does Jennifer Young know about unique skincare?

A lot.
Jennifer developed the Defiant Beauty Collection alongside her customised skin care products. She developed as we all know that unique skin needs unique products. Jennifer wanted  to bring an affordable off-the-shelf range to cancer patients to help with some of the side effects of chemo and radiation therapy.

What does Jennifer Young know about potentially harmful skincare ingredients?

A lot.
Jennifer is a qualified and practicing Nutritional Therapist. Jennifer specialises in supporting clients with skin issues (as well as specialising in supporting clients through cancer treatment and cancer prevention, and weight management). Many of her clients are sensitive to harsh ingredients and need gentle, effective alternatives.
Research has shown that some skin care ingredients, permitted for use in the UK, but banned in other countries are associated with ill health. Many clients are not aware of this and need help and guidance about avoiding such ingredients and finding alternative products.
These ingredients are not included in either our Defiant Beauty products or our unique products.

Why do you use glass bottles and jars?

We want to minimise the chances of potentially harmful substances getting into our products from the packaging. We know that there are lots of chemicals in plastics that could cause further harm during cancer treatment or, perhaps, increase the chances of developing cancer (these chemicals are called carcinogens).
As a Nutritional Therapist, Jennifer advises clients on how to avoid such substances. There is no way we were going to use plastic packaging for our products (even if it would reduce our packaging and postage costs). Some things are just too important to compromise.

Why are most of your products oil based?

This is a long story and we run workshops to explain just this. In short, as soon as water is introduced to a product preservatives are needed. They are not needed for oil based products, this includes balms. There are yet more ingredients that are needed in order to create a cream. Whilst our creams are natural, the introduction of all of these extras exposes your skin to more ingredients. Increasing the chance that you will be putting something onto your skin that could cause problems as your skin's sensitivity is heightened during treatment.

Am I able to buy trial sizes?

Yes. We know that, by now, you will be used to buying products and developing a sensitivity. We understand that you will want to try our products before buying a full size.

How do I know this is right for me?

We didn't do this on our own. We listened to cancer patients, cancer survivors and cancer care specialists. We took advice from lead nursing staff about the ingredients that we shouldn't use, we did lots of research about the best ingredients to use and we tried and tried our products. We asked others to try them and we listened when we were told about very special and very specific skin care needs.

Finally, we are happy with the results and we are able to offer Defiant Beauty to you.

Do you have a money-back guarantee?

We are so confident you will love the quality of our natural products we offer a no-quibble 14-day money-back guarantee. Of course, we can not accept returns for refunds on overly used or nearly-empty products. See our Refund Policy for full details.

Are the Jennifer Young customised products suitable for cancer patients?

Yes.

We are committed to making unique products available to everyone. We have worked hard to get these products right for you. We that everyone is unique, so we understand that we might not have it exactly right for some clients.
Our online consultation was designed by experts and they spent a great deal of time and effort to get it right. Please enjoy the consultation as many times as you would like (there is no charge for the consultations) and remember to answer the question about cancer treatment. It lets us know that there are a lot of ingredients that we can't use in your product. Don't worry there are still many that can be included. If you need us to know anything else about your experiences with other products, there is an opportunity during the consultation for you to tell us that too.

Who are Fresh Beauty?

Fresh Hair is a wig, well-being and beauty salon based on the chemo ward of our local hospital. Fresh Beauty is the name that Fiona Ford, the salon founder, gave to the Jennifer Young products that they sell in their salon.

Questions often asked about skincare and cancer

What causes skin issues during cancer treatment?

Dry, sore, sensitive skin, chapped lips and itchy skin are common side effects of cancer treatment1.  Many cancer drugs such as capeciabine, caelyx, sunitinib and sorafeneib are associated with skin conditions2,3.  A full list of drugs and their side effects can be found here. Nails can become damaged when being treated with paclitaxel and docetaxel4

Will Defiant Beauty help with radiation damaged skin?

Yes. Defiant Beauty can help to soothe and moisturise your skin. We recommend our Itchy Skin Oil. You need to be very careful about when you apply the Itchy Skin Oil. You should NEVER apply the oil before treatment, only afterwards and during breaks in treatment. We suggest that you apply the oil before a bath or shower so that excess oil can be washed away7.

Itchy Skin Oil contains Calendula, a soothing herbal macerate that has been shown to improve moderate-to-severe dermatitis (sore, dry and itchy skin)7.

The Society of Radiographers10 recommends that thick creams and creams with a high content of paraffin or petroleum jelly are not used on radiation damaged skin.

The Defiant Beauty Collection does not contain creams as creams and lotions contain oil and water. In order to turn oil and water into a cream or lotion, preservatives and emulsifying agents must be added. Creams and lotions cannot be made without using a large number of ingredients, increasing the number of substances that the patient is exposed to. As cancer patients often have sore, sensitive, dry, itchy and damaged skin we have decided to keep the number of ingredients in our products to a minimum – this means no creams or lotions.

Defiant Beauty does not contain any paraffin or petroleum jelly. You will find only natural vegetable oils in the Defiant Beauty range.

Why wasn’t I told to expect this?

Many patients are told of side effects such as hair loss and nausea but few hospitals mention skin and nail related side effects5. We hope that anyone reading our skin care advice will pass it on to anyone undergoing treatment as research also shows that skin care products designed specifically for cancer patients can make life easier during treatment5,6.

Will anything make it better?

Research has shown that skin care products specifically formulated for cancer patients are ‘better’ than other products5. Cancer patients report that the effective management of skin related side effects improves their quality of life during treatment6.

During cancer treatment, helping with skin, nail and lip relatedissues isn't much on the scale of things but it is a small thing that makes a difference.

Which ingredients are particularly effective?

Products containing calendula have been shown to be more effective at reducing the severity of dry skin than a standard product7. Olive oil is also reported to offer protection8

What should I do?

Cancer patients are advised to use natural products9 and to take extra care of their skin.

What is a natural product?

We run workshops to try to explain this and to help people understand about ingredients so this isn’t something that we can explain full here.  We consider natural to be from a plant and to have had minimal processing.

In the ‘natural’ skin care industry there are lots of attempts to make products appear to be natural. We find the Environmental Working Group’s website helpful. 

May I come to a workshop?

We would be delighted for you to come to one of our workshops. Please contact us for more information. Our workshops are free of charge; a donation to our chosen charity would be appreciated.

If you would like to arrange a workshop in your area, please contact us.

 

References

  1. http://www.cancercare.org/publications/76-caring_for_your_skin_during_cancer_treatment accessed 24 August 2012
  2. www.chemocare.com accessed 24 August 2012
  3. Thomas R (2011) Lifestyle and cancer the facts, learn how to live stronger for longer Health Education Publications page 210
  4. Thomas R (2011) Lifestyle and cancer the facts, learn how to live stronger for longer Health Education Publications page 214
  5. Supportive Care in Cancer Volume 18, Number 11 (2010), 1461-1468, DOI: 10.1007/s00520-009-0769-1 Unanticipated toxicities from anticancer therapies: Survivors’ perspectives accessed 24 August 2012
  6. Support Care Cancer (2011) 19:545–554 Advance knowledge of side effects and proactive management accessed 24 August 2012
  7. Thomas R (2011) Lifestyle and cancer the facts, learn how to live stronger for longer Health Education Publications page 208, 209, 210
  8. Thomas R (2011) Lifestyle and cancer the facts, learn how to live stronger for longer Health Education Publications page 208
  9. Thomas R (2011) Lifestyle and cancer the facts, learn how to live stronger for longer Health Education Publications page 209
  10. Summary of Intevention for Acute Radiotherapy-Induced Skin Reactions in cancer Patients: A Clinical Guideline recommended for use by The Society and College of Radiographers [online] Available at http://www.sor.org/learning/document-library/summary-interventions-acute-radiotherapy-induced-skin-reactions-cancer-patients-clinical-guideline-5 [accessed 8 March 2013].

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Comments (1)

  1. Dawn Bowles:
    Apr 23, 2016 at 01:26 PM

    Are your products suitable for vegans?