Ingredients and Why they Matter!

Organic Argan Oil

Argan oil is a rich, nutty oil that is grow in Morocco. There are several versions of argan oil out there. You can get argan oil in both organic and non-organic, and in both deodorized and non-deodorized. We here at Susie Q Skin will never use a deodorized version of any oil or butter. That is the process in which the oil or butter is stripped down to remove its natural smell. During this process, not only is the smell diminished but so is the nutritive value of the oil or butter. Only raw, fair trade, organic and non-deodorized versions of any oil or butter will be used in our products. You can find it listed in ingredient decks as Argania Spinosa.

Argan oil has recently made a splash in the skin care industry. You can find it in products that range from the pure oil for massage, to hair care, skin care and bath products. Argan oil is rich in natural fatty acids and vitamin E, both essential for excellent, long-term skin care.

The main purpose of argan oil in any product is to hydrate the skin. The best way to naturally prevent aging is to hydrate your skin on the outside and the inside. The best way to do this, in our opinion, is to use natural based skin care products that use high quality oils and butters.

Argan oil is a heavier weight oil, it has good skin feel and excellent hydration properties. Most people would never consider using argan oil on oily skin, but we are here to tell you otherwise. Argan oil is a natural moisturizer and it has a high amount of natural anti-oxidants, so when used in skincare it will help soothe the skin without leaving it feeling heavy or greasy. Argan is also a natural source of plant based vitamin A, which helps to reduce acne and wrinkles, and has a high amount of linolenic acid, which also helps not only to prevent acne but also to help reduce scarring created by acne.

Vitamin E is an ingredient on repeat in so many skin care products, including ours. There are so many benefits to Vitamin E and it makes such a difference in healing the skin. Vitamin E is an essential anti-oxidant to our skin and when applied topically through a natural skin care product, the vitamin E will work to help boost cell production.

Organic Arnica organic arnica montana

Arnica Montana is used worldwide in products to help relieve pain, reduce inflammation, eliminate internal bleeding, moisturize the skin, and reduce bruising. Arnica is well known for its ability to reduce inflammation. Applied topically, arnica can be seen to immediately help reduce swelling. Arnica also has a natural analgesic component, which helps to relieve topical pain. This topical pain relief is also beneficial to those suffering from diabetes, psoriasis, eczema, and other painful skin conditions. Pure, straight arnica should not be applied directly to the skin. Arnica should always be applied to wounds though a carrier base, such as a salve or oil like Susie Q Ink Oil or Ink Salve.


benefits of astaxanthin on skin

Astaxanthin. The crazy strong anti-oxidant that most people have never heard of. I learned about astaxanthin about 5 years ago through my research as the Director of Operations of the private label skin care lab. Once I learned about it, I started putting it in every single skin care product I use, and I started taking it daily in supplement form. My focus is always about reducing inflammation and hydrating from the inside and the outside, and astaxanthin can help with that.

Astaxanthin is a microalgae. It is a 100% natural material and not derived from animals. It is a very popular food for sea life such as shrimp, lobster, and salmon and it does contribute to their red/orange color. Astaxanthin is BRIGHT RED in color and will turn skin care products a yellow/orange color when used. If you ever purchase a skin care product that says it has astaxanthin in it and the product is white or clear, you need to question that.

Astaxanthin is such a powerful anti-oxidant. It is said that it is 10-100 times more powerful than other plant materials like beta-carotene and lycopene. Astaxanthin, when applied topically and when taken internally, can help protect the body naturally from sun exposure. I remember one vendor telling me at one point that astaxanthin is the sunscreen you wear from the inside!

Astaxanthin is said to be 6000 times more powerful than vitamin c, 550 times more powerful than vitamin e, and 40 times more powerful than beta-carotene at fighting free radicals. This means that products that incorporate astaxanthin will work better at creating healthier skin, reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, and at brightening dull skin.

Taking astaxanthin in supplement form and applying it topically has been proven to show a reduction in the signs of aging. An 8-week study was done on 30 women and within those 8 weeks they showed a visible reduction in crow’s feet, age spots, elasticity, skin texture, and moisture content. We purposely include astaxanthin in our skincare to give your skin the best fighting chance at being healthier, more radiant and firmer!

Organic Avocado Oil

benefits of avocado oil on skin

Avocado oil is one of the richest, most luxurious feeling oils for your skin. Avocado oil has a high level of antioxidants and fatty acids, so the use of products that contain all-natural avocado oil helps to hydrate your skin and helps to reduce the signs of aging.

There are generally two different types of avocado oil. Unrefined organic versus conventional. Conventional avocado oil has been extracted and processed using chemicals. This destroys the fatty acid profile of the oil, and strips it of critical minerals and vitamins. Unrefined, organic avocado oil is extracted from the soft green flesh around the pit of the avocado. The cold-process of extraction leaves the whole fruit extracted oil intact, allowing your skin to benefit from the full fatty acid, mineral and vitamin profiles. We here at Susie Q Skin only use the unrefined organic version.

Collagen Boosting- Yes! We all know about collagen now and how it benefits everything from your joints to your organs to your hair and nails. Boosting collagen production through your daily skincare regimen is the reason why you should use certain products. Avocado oil has been tested and proven to boost the natural collagen production.

Healing-every day we damage our skin. It can be through the chemicals we put on it, the alcohol we consume, the polluted air we breathe, or the sun we like to worship (well, maybe that’s just me?). Using all-natural skin care products that contain highly effective healing agents like avocado oil can help undo some of that damage.

Vitamin E- avocado oil has a high content of natural vitamin E. Vitamin E is beneficial to the skin by reducing inflammation and hydrating the skin.

Hydration- avocado oil is a heavy oil with the ability to penetrate deeper into the dermal layer and impart a higher level of hydration to your skin. This is one reason why we have chosen this oil to be in our Calming and Golden Facial Oil Serums. Avocado oil will help balance inflamed skin and leave your face feeling and looking softer and fresher.

Cancer Fighting- organic, unrefined avocado oil has a high content of carotenoids and phytosterols. These phytochemicals help to fight the formation of free radicals on your skin.

Bergamot Essential Oil

bergamot essential oil

Method of Extraction: Cold Processed

Plant Part: Rind/Peel

Country of Origin: Italy

Ingredient Name: Citrus Bergamia Risso

Certifications: Wildcrafted

Bergamot essential oil elicits memories of orange trees off an Italian coastline, or at least to me it does! Bergamot essential oil is a citrus essential oil, but its smell is softer than that of a traditional orange or grapefruit essential oil.  Bergamot essential oil is harvested through cold processing the rind of the fruit.

I want to start off by saying that many citrus essential oils and extracts can cause sun sensitivity to the skin. This is important to know because you should only use these types of products at night and avoid direct sun exposure for about 12 hours after use. We here at Susie Q Skin, in fact, use bergamot essential oil that is bergaptene free, which means that it does not contain the sun-reactive ingredients. Our products that contain bergamot essential oil are perfectly fine to use in the morning and will not cause any sun-reaction.

Anti-bacterial- bacteria is something all of us have on our face. It is a natural by-product of the pollutants in our air and the natural sebum production of our skin. Bergamot essential oil has been proven to be a highly effective anti-bacterial, it also kills off various strains of bacteria, viruses and fungi, and helps to cleanse the skin.

Scars- bergamot essential oil is an excellent ingredient to use topically on existing scars and scar tissue.  Use our Calming Facial Oil Serum after surgery, on acne scars, and on cosmetic tattoos to help prevent scarring and the buildup of scar tissue.

Age Spots- bergamot essential oil is also great at reducing melanin issues, such as sun and age spots, which can be kind of ironic because of the sun-reactive issues in non-bergaptene free bergamot. If you have those brown spots on your face, start using an all-natural skin care product like our Calming Facial Oil Serum daily. This will help to even out and fade those brown spots that develop as we age.

Stress-Reduction- When we are stressed, our skin gets stressed. We have changes in hormone levels, our body sweats more, sometimes our skin gets oilier, and in general our bodies are not as healthy as when we are not stressed. One of the aromatherapy benefits of bergamot essential oil is the overall reduction of stress and anxiety felt by the body. Applying all-natural skin care products to your face, such as our Calming Facial Oil Serum, will elicit this aromatherapy benefit. So not only will your skin look better, but you will feel less stressed at the same time!

Organic Black Seed Oil

black seed oil

Have you heard of black seed oil yet? If not, you should, and this should become a daily part of your skin care regimen. Black seed oil is a cold processed oil from black cumin seeds. You can find it listed in ingredient decks as Nigella Sativa. The version used in all Susie Q Skin care products is always organic.

This oil is said to "kill everything but death" in some parts of the world. Here are just a few of the documented benefits of black seed oil in your personal care products:

At one of our shows I had a lady come up to me and tell me that she was losing her hair. She did some research and found that topical application and internal consumption of black seed oil will re-grow hair. She had a beautiful head of hair and said she rubs a black seed oil cream on her scalp every other night (the night before she washes her hair), and then takes black seed oil in a pill form every day.

I put black seeds in my smoothies and I use black seed oil in my skin care products (KINDNESS Black Seed-C Creams, Rose Fig Cream and Acne Prone Facial Oil Serum). My mother died of cancer over 15 years ago, so every ingredient I use is all about healing the body and reducing inflammation.

Blue Tansy Essential Oilblue tansy essential oil

Blue Tansy is one of the four key essential oils used in Susie Q Ink Oil and Ink Salve. Blue Tansy is known to be antibacterial, anti-fungal, anti-inflammatory, anti-histaminic, antiviral, and an insecticide.

Blue Tansy can be toxic if taken internally. The toxicity in this plant is what makes it such an effective bacterial killer. Fresh tattoos and lacerated skin are highly susceptible to bacteria and infections. We included Blue Tansy in our tattoo aftercare products specifically because of its bacteria-killing capabilities.

Blue Tansy is well known for its anti-inflammatory properties. This is key when applying to inflamed (just tattooed) skin or skin that is affected by eczema or psoriasis. Blue Tansy helps to give relief from inflamed skin and helps to calm aggravated skin.

Blue Tansy is also an anti-histaminic. This means when your skin has an allergic reaction to something (grass, red ink, detergents, food, etc.), Blue Tansy will neutralize the histamine action on the skin and reduce the allergic attack. This is key when working with freshly tattooed skin. It also makes Susie Q Ink Oil and Ink Salve so useful when applied to any infected skin. I have several friends that have diabetes and suffer from skin diseases on their legs, feet and hands and count on our Ink Oil and Ink Salve to help reduce their inflammation and pain.

You will see on the site that I say our Ink Oil makes a great pet spray as well. Blue Tansy has amazing insecticidal properties. Blue Tansy is poisonous to most insects and bugs like cockroaches, ants, termites, mosquitoes, fleas, ticks, lice, and bed bugs. So you can even use Susie Q Ink Oil and Ink Salve out in the woods to help prevent bug bites, or help soothe and reduce itching and swelling associated with any bug bites.

Blue Tansy has sedative properties on the skin. This is amazingly useful for the tattoo process! It is a sedative for your nerves! Your nerves are what is over-stimulated when you get a tattoo. I have an aunt who suffers terribly from varicose veins, and after her surgeries, she always applies Susie Q Ink Oil and Ink Salve to help calm her skin and reduce the pain.

Blue Tansy is what gives Susie Q Ink Oil non-drying wash and Ink Salve tattoo balm that beautiful blue tone and spicy scent, too. I believe so strongly in the use of Blue Tansy, and I know that you will love the effects of it on your skin.

Carrot Seed Oil

carrot seed oil

Ingredient Deck Name: Daucus Carota
Method of Extraction: Cold Processed
Country of Origin: USA

We here at Susie Q Skin love to pick these rarely used, wild plants to boost the natural ability to heal. Carrot seed oil is one of those. Carrot seed oil can either be a carrier oil (our version) or an essential oil. It is critical to ensure which version is being used in your skincare products as they have completely different benefits.

Carrot oil is bright orange in color, has a slightly earthy smell, and is crazy beneficial when used in skin care products (hence the reason we use it). You will find it listed in ingredient decks as Daucus Carota.

Carrot seed oil is a very strong oil that has been shown to have strong anti-bacterial, anti-microbial and anti-fungal properties. Studies have shown that carrot seed oil can work to kill off infections such as E. coli, salmonella and candida.

Carrot seed oil (not essential oil) is also an excellent source of natural retinol. Retinol is a key ingredient when it comes to anti-aging skin care products. Natural, plant-based retinol sources, like carrot seed oil, can help to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, can help to improve the natural elasticity of the skin, can help reduce acne, and can help to gently exfoliate the skin allowing fresher, brighter, younger looking skin to come to the surface.

We all know that the more colorful the vegetable/fruit, the more anti-oxidants. These anti-oxidants from the bright orange and purple carrots are just as active in the plant oils. Studies have been done incorporating carrot seed oil into natural/plant-based sunscreens. Anti-oxidants help to protect the skin from sun damage, along with providing some natural SPF.

Organic Castor Oil

organic castor oil

Susie Q Ink Salve uses castor oil because it gives great glide and feel to the tattoo balm. It also replaces the need for the use of any petroleum products. Many aftercare products are petroleum based and though petroleum jelly products do have great glide, and they do create what feels like an amazing layer of protection on the skin, the evil secret behind petroleum based products is that they dry out your skin by stripping the sebum, which makes you want to apply more. As you apply more, skin feels dry, so you apply more. Castor oil gives the feel similar to that of petroleum based products, just without the petroleum.

Castor oil is full of ricinoleic, oleic, and linoleic acids. These acids are great anti-oxidants, and they are known to help in the treatment of rheumatism, arthritis, and gout. Castor oil also easily penetrates the dermal layer and is absorbed by the skin. Additionally, castor oil contains a high level of undecylenic acid. This works as a germicide and helps to disinfect.

As Castor oil is used on burns and wounds to help protect them from infections, applying Susie Q Ink Salve to your tattoo, bug bites, sunburns, or infected areas will help keep the area clean and free of germs.

Chamomile Essential Oil (Roman)

chamomile essential oil

Method of Extraction: Steam Distilled
Plant Part: Flower
Country of Origin: USA (Oregon)
Ingredient Name: Anthemis Nobilis
Certifications: Organic

Chamomile has been used for centuries in natural remedies throughout the world. There are two general types of chamomile essential oil, Roman and German. Chamomile is most traditionally consumed in teas, with more than one million cups prepared per day.

Chamomile has been documented to benefit issues such as hay fever, inflammation, muscle spasms, menstrual issues, insomnia, ulcers, wounds, gastrointestinal issues, rheumatic pain, hemorrhoids, and various skin conditions. Chamomile essential oil is noted for its anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant properties.

Powerful Essential Oil- Studies have shown that roman chamomile essential oil penetrates deeply into the under layers of the skin. This is not the same with all essential oils, which is why roman chamomile essential oil is so beneficial in all-natural skin care products like our Calming Facial Oil Serum. An essential oil that penetrates deeper is more effective in reducing inflammation and calming skin.

Anti-Cancer- Studies show that topical application of products containing chamomile essential oil have slowed the growth and development of cancerous cells in skin, breast, prostate and ovarian cancer. This is great news for individuals who have sun damaged skin.

Wound Healing- Chamomile essential oil has been proven to dramatically speed up the process of healing when dealing with skin wounds. If you are battling issues such as acne or scars on your face, all-natural skin care products containing chamomile essential oil can help speed up healing. In addition, all-natural products like our Calming Facial Oil Serum are excellent at healing new cosmetic tattoos (micropigmentation). When you have just had your brows done, it is critical to use products with superior healing properties. You want to prevent scabbing and scarring by using products to help promote healing and hydration.

Reducing Skin Inflammation-chamomile essential oil has been tested and shown to significantly reduce skin inflammation. A topical application of chamomile essential oil is similar in inflammation reduction as 0.25% hydrocortisone. Using skin care products that contain chamomile essential oil will help to reduce swelling, redness and will help to calm damaged skin.

Clary Sage Essential Oil

benefits of clary sage on skin

Extraction Method: Steam Distilled
Plant Part: Blossoms and Plant
Country of Origin: Bulgaria Ingredient
Name: Salvia Sclarea

We use essential oils in all Susie Q Skin products to do a job, not just for the smell. Essential oils have recently become much more popular in the mainstream, thanks to companies like Living Young and DoTerra. Lucky for us, essential oils have been around for thousands of years, and have many tried and tested benefits.

Clary Sage is a key component in our acne product line. We incorporate clary sage for both the physical application benefits, and for the aromatherapy benefits.

Clary sage is known to help with:

Depression- clary sage can help boost self-esteem, boost confidence and thereby fight depression

Kills bacteria- this is the primary reason we use it in our acne products. The topical application of clary sage can kill current bacteria on the skin and can help protect against new bacterial infections

Clary sage is also an excellent astringent. When you are fighting acne at any age, being able to effectively remove excess sebum without drying and stripping the skin is critical. Our Acne Prone Facial Oil Serum uses both organic hazelnut oil and clary sage essential oils specifically to do that.

Balance oil production- clary sage is known to help balance out the natural sebum production. Acneic skin is because of an overabundance of oil and sebum production, and encapsulating bad bacteria in that sebum. Using products that contain clary sage will not only help to kill that bad bacterial, but will also support your skin in regulating the sebum production so that your face is not so oily.


Organic Cocoa Butter

organic cocoa butter

Who doesn’t love chocolate? Well, I have actually met a few people that are allergic to chocolate, which I think would be a terrible affliction to have. I personally love chocolate. Dark, rich, 85% cacao bean bars. Those are my favorite. No funky stuff added. No milk. Barely any sugar. Just like munching on a cacao bean. My love of raw chocolate is what introduced me to cacao butter. When you make raw chocolate at home you use cacao powder, cacao butter (we say cocoa you say cacao…tomato tomatoe), a little bee pollen, some peppermint essential oil, maybe some raw honey and you have crazy homemade raw chocolate. Cocoa butter gives raw chocolate the creamy texture and it has an amazing aroma. These same benefits are what cocoa butter does for skin care! Makes our KINDNESS Black Seed Oil-C Creams smell so good you want to eat it.

Aside from the nice, smooth chocolatey smell that cocoa butter gives our anti-aging cream, it also adds moisture and anti-oxidants to the cream. Cocoa butter is an off-white to tan colored natural butter. It is hard when cold but will soften and melt when applied to your skin. The cocoa butter that we use at Susie Q Skin is not deodorized. That means that it has not been processed to remove all the smell and flavor. We believe in using the most-pure forms of oils and butters possible, and this means that you have a more pure product for your skin.

  • Cocoa butter is full of beneficial fatty acids, this includes oleaic acid, stearic acid and palmitic acids. These acids are like active hydrators for your skin. They help to remove old, dead skin and to replenish new skin.
  • Cocoa butter is excellent at preventing stretch marks
  • Cocoa butter products are effective in lessening the effects of eczema and psoriasis. When applied topically, cocoa butter products can provide a protective barrier on the affected skin. This prevents things like harsh soap and allergens from exacerbating the dry spots.
  • Cocoa butter has a high content of cocoa mass polyphenol (CMP). This helps stop the production of immuno globulin IgE, which is known to aggravate eczema, dermatitis, and psoriasis.
  • Cocoa butter products are excellent to soothe dry skin.
  • Cocoa butter products have the same anti-inflammatory benefits as eating chocolate.
  • Cocoa butter products cause less skin irritation than traditional moisturizers. This makes it excellent for individuals with sensitive skin.
  • Cocoa butter is high on polyphenols, these are high functioning anti-aging ingredients. Studies have proven to show that cocoa butter based products improve skin texture, boost collagen production, and improve skin elasticity.
  • Cocoa butter naturally has a longer shelf life and will not go rancid.
  • Cocoa butter products are high in anti-oxidants, which helps to lessen age spots, dark patches and dull or ashy skin.

Susie of Susie Q Skin has spent 16 years researching raw materials and skin care ingredients. During her time as Director of Operations of a private label skin care lab she encountered high quality ingredients, and also ingredients that had been adulterated and diluted of all nutrients. When Susie launched her line one commitment was that Susie Q Skin products would only use the highest quality ingredients possible. The cocoa butter that we use in all our products is un-refined, organic, fair trade cocoa butter. The quality of ingredients creates the quality of skin care, and that is our priority. You can feel good about all the ingredients used in Susie Q Skin products.

Organic, Cold-Processed Coconut Oilorganic coconut oil

The first ingredient in Ink Salve is organic coconut oil. It gives our salve an amazing glide and skin feel. Coconut oil is touted as safe for preventing drying and flakiness of skin. This is key when it comes to a tattoo. If you don’t moisturize your tattoo, it will scab over and flake. If you’re at that stage in your tattoo and your just finding Susie Q, no worries. Order your product today, and start using it immediately. You will notice a difference even if you are days into your new tattoo.

Coconut is everywhere now. You can get it in your toothpaste, in your hair products, in your smoothies, and for your pet food. There is a reason that coconut is so popular and so amazing. Organic coconut oil has been a staple in my personal life for years. Coconut oil does not oxidize, which means it doesn’t go rancid. You can use coconut oil on and in every part of your body. Even my dogs love it on their dog food. Coconut oil has so many benefits and uses it would be impossible to list them all. So when I created Susie Q tattoo aftercare products, organic, cold-processed coconut oil was a must.

Coconut oil is said to help reduce the appearance of wrinkles and sagging skin. It helps prevent premature aging of the skin because of its high level of anti-oxidant properties. Organic coconut oil is used to help skin issues such as psoriasis, dermatitis, eczema, and various skin infections. This means Susie Q not only works great on tattoos, but on many different skin ailments.

Coconut oil is also great to help boost the immune system. The skin is your biggest organ and your first line of defense. I incorporated coconut oil into Susie Q Ink Salve not only because it feels great on the skin, but also because it is full of anti-microbial lipids, lauric acid, capric acid, and caprylic acid. These all have great anti-bacterial and anti-viral properties. When applied to tattoos, our salve with organic coconut oil forms a protective layer that protects the skin from dust, air, bacteria, and viruses.

Coenzyme Q10


Many people have heard of Coenzyme Q10. It is very common both in anti-aging creams and as a dietary supplement. You can take a CoQ10 supplement daily, in conjunction with any CoQ10 skin care product. This will help increase the collagen activity, boost the efficacy of your skin, energize cells, and help protect again sun damage.

As we age many of the critical minerals and vitamins that help to keep our skin looking and feeling great start to diminish and CoQ10 is one of those. The CoQ10 that is used in skincare products, is a vitamin-like molecule obtained from plants.

CoQ10 is a critical ingredient to protect your skin from UV and pollution damage. We are exposed daily to toxins, through skin care products (unless you use Susie Q Skin), the sun, our food, our water, and the air we breathe. It is essential to use natural-based skin care products that incorporate strong plant based anti-oxidants, such as CoQ10, to help the skin remove those pollutants. The build-up of pollutants in our skin and organs ages our bodies, so using products such as any of our facial oil serums or our Rose Fig Cream will help protect your skin.

CoQ10 has recently been shown to both improve collagen production and to effectively reduce the damaging effect of the sun. This means if you are a sun lover like me and have those lovely age/sun spots on your hands, face, and decollete, the practice of using skin care products with CoQ10 will reduce the discoloration.

Organic Evening Primrose Oil

evening primrose oil

Evening primrose oil is a fabulous oil for any kind of skin issue. Evening primrose is from the seed of the evening primrose plant. The version that is used in Susie Q Skin products is organic, cold-processed and Kosher certified. We always strive to only use the highest quality, natural oils. You will see it listed in ingredient decks as Oenothera Biennis.

Evening primrose oil can be applied topically and be taken internally, depending on the issues you are attempting to treat. Topical application of evening primrose oil can help skin conditions such as acne, psoriasis, eczema, hemorrhoids and bruises.

Evening primrose has a high amount of gamma-linolenic acid (GLA). This is an omega-6 fatty acid found in many plant oils. Because of the high content in evening primrose oil, products that contain it work to reduce inflammation and balance out sebum production in acne prone skin.

Evening primrose is also excellent at helping to strengthen the skin barrier and increase moisture in skin. It is also an excellent natural source of anti-oxidants, which can help to reduce or slow the aging process.

Native Americans used the seed oil to treat minor wounds and hemorrhoids.

Galbanum Essential Oilgalbanum essential oil

Galbanum is one of the four key essential oils in our Susie Q Ink Oil and Ink Salve. Galbanum is known for its anti-arthritic, anti-rheumatic, anti-spasmodic, circulatory, detoxifier, emollient, scar reduction, insecticide, wound healing, and anti-parasitic properties! The use of galbanum on the skin goes back to ancient Rome and Greek civilizations, where it was used in baths and balms.

Galbanum is a natural stimulant to the circulatory system. Improving blood circulation helps with arthritis and joint pain. When you have a wound, such as a brand-new tattoo, increasing blood circulation to the area will help promote healing. Fresh, oxygenated blood brings needed nutrients to the tattoo which can help to reduce healing time.

Galbanum also works to help detoxify the body. By increasing the circulation, the body is more able to flush out any toxins. Galbanum works powerfully to help detoxify the skin and is great at reducing acne spots, abscesses, and inflamed skin. In the process of flushing out toxins and reducing scarring, galbanum also supports natural sebum production, allowing the body to reset and help get rid of various skin ailments caused by any over-production of sebum.

Galbanum is also known to help relieve the effects of muscle spasms and cramps. This is great in the world of tattoos as your muscles are often fatigued and tight after sitting for a tattoo. This is especially true after a long tattoo session. Galbanum will help to calm the muscles and support them in the relaxation process.

When tattoos are healing, there are many possibilities for scarring. This is a very unwanted side effect of not using the correct aftercare products, and an effect we work hard to prevent. Galbanum is known as a cicatrisant, which means it helps to diminish scars. This includes marks left from acne, pox, surgery, or tattoos that didn’t heal correctly in the past. Galbanum helps to speed up the growth of new skin and cells, giving the area a fresh and clean look. This is paramount in the aftercare process. You will notice significantly less, if any at all, scarring, scabbing, and damage to your tattoos if you use Susie Q Ink Oil and Ink Salve. These products need to be used immediately and frequently, and you will have a refreshing after tattoo experience.

Part of the key process to Susie Q aftercare products is moisturizing the skin, which is keeping the skin moist and hydrated. This is key to wound reduction. Galbanum is known to rejuvenate the skin and help give it a younger look. This is great news for tattoos, as regular usage of galbanum in your Susie Q products will keep tattoos looking fresh and healthy for the life of your tattoo. Susie Q is not just meant for the week after your tattoos, but to be used forever in the continual care and upkeep of your tattoo art.

I use Susie Q Ink Oil daily to wash my face. The galbanum in our Ink Oil is one of the reasons why it works so well. Galbanum is known to help reduce stretch marks, cracks in the skin, creases, and fine lines. Daily use of Ink Oil is a great delivery system of galbanum to your fine lines.

Susie Q Ink Oil and Ink Salve, as you will notice, will be great deterrents to bugs and insects. Galbanum supports this process to help drive away mosquitoes, flies, cockroaches, and other insects.

Last but not least, Galbanum is an amazing treatment to help heal wounds! Oh yes, we were intentional in the inclusion of galbanum in our Ink Oil and Ink Salve. Not only does it contribute to the amazing smell of our products, but Galbanum helps promote the accumulation of leucocytes and platelets to wounded skin. Leucocytes (white blood cells) and platelets are integral in the healing process. White blood cells protect the body against microorganisms; platelets help to repair blood vessels and stimulate healing. As it is doing this, it also creates an anti-bacterial layer to prevent bacteria and infections in the wound. What more could you ask for in the week after a new tattoo? This is why Susie Q Ink Oil and Ink Salve work so well in keeping your skin clean and moving toward a beautiful tattoo.

Organic Hazelnut Oil

organic hazelnut oil

If you live in the Pacific NW, you may know them as Filberts or you may know them as Hazelnuts- they are the same thing. You may also know, and either love or hate it (I hate it) Nutella…the famous hazelnut/filbert spread. The only way I like to consume hazelnuts, is through my skin.

Hazelnut oil is expeller pressed from the actual nut. You can find it in organic and non-organic versions. The version used in Susie Q Skin products will always be the organic version. You can find it listed in ingredient decks as Corylus Avellana.

Hazelnut Oil is one of my favorite facial oils. We incorporate it into several products, but most noticeably you will find it in our Acne Prone or oily skin products. Hazelnut oil is an excellent natural astringent and anti-bacterial. Our Acne Prone Facial Oil Serum has a large amount of hazelnut oil, and it works both by toning your skin and killing off bacteria.

Due to its strong astringent properties, hazelnut oil is known to help minimize pore size and help balance sebum production naturally, while also leaving your skin soft and hydrated.

Hazelnut oil is an excellent source of natural vitamin E. Vitamin E benefits your skin by slowing down the aging process and as a natural humectant. Hazelnut also imparts vitamins C and A (natural, not Retinol) into the skin, and the combination of these vitamins has been proven to help prevent new fine lines and wrinkles.

Hazelnut oil also is made up of a high amount of natural fatty acids. These fatty acids create a high moisture value for skin care. This is one reason we use Hazelnut oil in our natural facial oil serums. Naturally hydrating your skin from the outside and the inside is the ideal way to fight signs of aging.

A hidden benefit to hazelnut oil based products is the natural UV protection. It is not tested by the FDA for an official SPF rating.

Helichrysum Essential Oil

helichrysum essential oil

Another one of our four key essential oils, Helichrysum is known for its antispasmodic, anti-allergenic, anti-microbial, anti-inflammatory, scar reduction, anti-fungal, emollient, and cytophylactic properties. What a mouthful!

Susie Q Ink Oil and Ink Salve use helichrysum along with our other key essential oils to help aid in the recovering process from a new tattoo. These anti-microbial and anti-fungal components are beneficial when you have an exposed area such as a new tattoo. Helichrysum can help keep your skin clear of microorganisms and bacteria that can leave your tattoo infected and raw.

Helichrysum is also known to help reduce muscle spams. When you apply Ink Oil and Ink Salve you not only get the topical benefits, but you also get the aromatherapy benefits from each essential oil. Inhaling helichrysum can help reduce muscle spams and cramps, which can help ease the process of getting and healing from a tattoo.

Freshly tattooed skin is always angry and red. As soon as your tattoo artist is done, your skin will be tight and angry. Applying helichrysum can help reduce the inflammation, which is one of the reasons we have included it in our products. Many of our users have told us their skin feels much calmer and the after effects of a tattoo are greatly reduced by the simple application of Susie Q Ink Oil in the tattoo shop.

Scarring is something you never want in your tattoo. You have a beautiful work of art - now you want to make sure it stays that way. Many tattoo aftercare products say they use natural ingredients to help reduce scarring, but our Susie Q products actually do use essential oils that are well known for their anti-scarring properties. In the technical world, these are called cicatrsiants. In layman terms it means to help heal wounds and cutc quickly and to help reduce scarring. Helichrysum applied daily to the skin through the use of Susie Q aftercare products can help any wounded tissue, not just tattoos. That is why they are so popular even for individuals that don’t have tattoos.

Helichrysum also has cytophylactic properties. That means that it helps to promote cell growth, gets rid of old cells, and stimulates new cells. When you are healing from any wound, tattoos included, cell growth and promotion can help make the process much smoother and will reduce scarring and damage.

The fine lines around our eyes are caused by old cells, as well. With the use of helichrysum in our Susie Q Ink Oil, you can help promote the regeneration of those cells and reduce the appearance of fine lines.

Organic Hempseed Oil

organic hemp seed oil

Hemp is the new buzzword, thanks to the recent legalization of marijuana in many states. The use of hemp in treating wounds and ailments is not new, but it is still somewhat controversial. Hempseed oil is a rich, heavy oil that has great healing properties and gives excellent skin feel to Susie Q tattoo aftercare products. Hempseed oil does not contain any THC. There is no risk of feeling drugged or having any marijuana effects with the use hempseed oil in our Susie Q products.

Hempseed oil is full of anti-oxidants, which help to prevent free radicals. Free radicals are not only the cause of aging, but are also a known factor in cancer. The use of hempseed oil topically will release these free radical fighting anti-oxidants, help to prevent aging, and are said to help in the prevention of some cancers.

Organic Jojoba Oil

organic jojoba oil

Jojoba oil isn’t really an oil. It is called an oil in every product but it is actually a liquid wax. This is why jojoba oil is known as being an anti-comedogenic ingredient and why it is used in so many skin care products.

Jojoba oil is very similar to our skin’s natural oils. This is why jojoba oil can feel weightless on your skin. Jojoba oil will create a natural barrier that will help keep your skin smooth and moisturized. Since the structure of jojoba oil is so similar to human skin, when you apply it to your skin your pores do not close up and get clogged. This allows the moisturizing effects of jojoba to fully penetrate the skin and actually moisturize rather than just depositing oils on the top layer of your skin.

We have incorporated rich, organic USA-grown jojoba oil into Susie Q Ink Oil to give your skin the most protective treatment. We recommend Ink Oil to be used in the shower, before you ever use soap. The organic jojoba oil in the Ink Oil creates the barrier on your tattoo and will keep the soap used on the rest of your body from penetrating and drying out your tattoo. Since jojoba oil is so similar to your skin, it won’t clog it up, making Ink Oil an excellent non-drying wash and promoting the healing of your tattoo.

Organic jojoba oil in the Ink Oil is also what makes Ink Oil a great product to use on aging, sun-exposed, acneic skin. I recommend using Ink Oil as a daily treatment on your neck, décolleté, arms, and hands to keep them looking young and supple. Jojoba oil delivers the moisture to the skin without feeling heavy.

Organic Oregon Lavender Essential Oil

 Method of Extraction: Steam Distilled

Plant Part: Flower

Country of Origin: USA

Ingredient Name: Lavandula Angustifolia

Oregon Lavender Essential Oil

In our quest to formulate the highest quality, most effective, truly natural skincare we have found some amazing essential oils for our products.  Oregon Lavender essential oil is one of the key components of our Calming Facial Oil Serum. Please note that this information is about lavender essential oil, not lavender fragrance. There is a major difference between essential oils and fragrances and you are only able to receive any health benefits, topically, internally or through aromatherapy, from essential oil based products, not ones made with fragrance.

We diligently search for ethical, high quality vendors of all our raw materials. Our oils are always raw, organic, un-refined and fair trade when possible. We also try to source as many ingredients locally and from the US as possible. Oregon Lavender essential oil is one of the best lavenders we have ever found. It is grown about 20 miles from my house and is only produced in small batches two times per year. Everything about the production of this essential oil is cared for by hand and guaranteed to be of the highest quality.

Lavender Essential Oil is Controversial for Me

Susie of Susie Q Skin is not a fan of lavender essential oil. Why, you ask? Well, because lavender essential oil makes her stop breathing. Just a little thing, you know, but, she knows that there are many health benefits from products containing lavender, and she knows there are a lot of lavender fans in this world. She is also aware that many, many people have reactions to lavender, from anaphylaxis to skin rashes, so there will only ever be a few products that contain lavender.

Benefits of Lavender Essential Oil

Yes, lavender essential oil is widely known for its relaxation properties.  We make a bath soak that contains the Oregon lavender which is excellent for pre-bed baths, and for individuals with high levels of anxiety or mental challenges like Autism. Lavender essential oil has been tested and proven many, many, many times over to show a marked decrease in anxiety and mood disorders when used both through aromatherapy and through internal consumption.

Calming inflamed skin- the primary purpose of our Calming Facial Oil Serum is to reduce the redness and inflammation of damaged skin. Our skin goes through seasons just like the rest of our body. There are phases of time when our skin will be calm and smooth and beautiful, and then times when the stress of our lives shows up on our face and it is inflamed, and red and not happy. These are the times when a balanced facial cleanser like our No Regrets, and then a soothing facial oil serum like our Calming Facial Oil Serum can help to reduce that inflammation, redness, and calm our skin.

Anti-oxidant- Lavender essential oil is used throughout many cultures in tinctures and healing remedies because of its anti-oxidant and anti-microbial properties. Anti-oxidants are free radical fighters, that help to slow the process of aging and help to protect the skin and body tissues from oxidative stress. Studies have shown that lavender essential oil increases the bodies natural anti-oxidants, helping to protect the skin and body from aging. When you use a product like our Calming Facial Oil Serum on a regular basis, you are promoting natural anti-oxidant fighters in your skin.

Collagen Boosting-Everyone knows about collagen now. We hear about it in smoothies and bone broth and pills. There are creams and serums now that say they have collagen in them. It is everywhere! The key with better collagen production, though, is not applying a cream or serum with a small amount of it in there, rather it is about healing your skin so that it boosts its own collagen production. Studies have been done that show lavender essential oil boosts the collagen production on damaged skin, causing the skin to significantly improve and repair itself. This is the goal of all Susie Q Skin products, and specifically why our facial oil serums are so great for your skin. No chemicals, no funky ingredients, all natural ways of boosting collagen and improving your skin.

 **About the referenced tests- I hate even referencing these studies but, unfortunately, they have been done and they have results. We here at Susie Q Skin will never test our products or ingredients on animals and we specifically purchase from vendors who also follow the same cruelty free guidelines.


benefits of magnesium

Magnesium is one of those minerals we hear about, but no one is really sure how much to take or how to take it or why it even matters. Here at Susie Q Skin we are all about trying to better our bodies, so let me shed a little light on the subject.

Magnesium is a key mineral that makes up all our bones and cell tissue. When we are born, our little brand-new infant bodies are full of magnesium (and all the other things our skin and bones need, like collagen and sulfur). As we age, and as we consume things like fast-food and alcohol, and as we breathe in our polluted air, key minerals start to get depleted, and magnesium is one of those.

Magnesium is used by our body to not just maintain strong bones, but to also help regulate sleep, increase nerve function and communication, regulate heart health, decrease depression and help with such issues like Fibromyalgia and migraines.

Benefits of Magnesium:

Magnesium is a mineral that is found in many food sources, such as avocados, green beans, spinach, etc. Even though many plant foods contain magnesium, it is said that 80% of adult Americans are deficient in this essential mineral. When we don’t have enough magnesium, our bodies either secrete it from our bones, or it under performs. Magnesium is associated with the following health benefits:

1-Bone Strength- as a woman, I am aware that my lovely hormones effect my bone density. I have done weight bearing activities throughout my life to help keep my bones strong, and I eat a diet full of plants, but even with all that I still take a magnesium supplement daily and I regularly use our Rose Magnesium Mask Mixer with our facial masks. When consumed in combination of both diet, supplement and topical applications, our bodies have a much higher likelihood of having an adequate amount of magnesium. Magnesium is most beneficial to our bones when it is consumed along with calcium. These two are minerals that must be taken together to be absorbed correctly by our bodies. Calcium alone is not sufficient, and magnesium without calcium is ineffective.

2-Sleep- who doesn’t need more and BETTER sleep, right? Magnesium is said to help bring on feelings of drowsiness that help us to fall asleep, and it helps to relax muscles and regulate heart rate, both of which help us sleep better. When you combine this with the organic lavender essential oil we use in our Lavender Vanilla Bath Soaks it is like a sleeping concoction.

3-Muscle Cramps, Pain and Soreness from working out- oh yes, you know that lovely feeling the day after leg day? It is a beautiful feeling and one that some of us wish wasn’t quite so strong. Soaking in a magnesium bath or foot bath before bed can help relieve all these pains. One great way to use our Bath Soaks is to put about 1/4 cup into a large bowl, add in some hot water, and soak your feet in it while you lounge on the couch, watching tv or reading a book. Just a 30-minute soak, then easy clean up and you’ve got all the benefits of our bath soaks.

4-Enhance Brain- Muscle Communication- Magnesium and calcium, when taken together, can help strengthen the signals between your brain and your muscles. This means that you can work out harder and gain strength faster. It also means that individuals that suffer from issues like Fibromyalgia can get some relief with increased nerve function and muscle communication.

5-Heart Health- magnesium is found in higher concentrations in your heart than anywhere else in your body. Adequate levels of magnesium help to maintain nerve function, helps support lower blood pressure and, in turn, help prevent hypertension.

6-Depression and Migraines-a study was done in which 475 individuals with depression were studied. All 475 were shown to have lower than normal levels of magnesium. Much of the benefits of magnesium on depression and migraines has to do with brain health, and the fact that magnesium helps improve the absorption and function of calcium. This increased calcium, in turn, helps stabilize cellular membranes.

7-Preeclampsia- In a study done in 2002 with 10,000 women, those with adequate levels of magnesium saw a 58% reduction in risk of preeclampsia. This can be attributed to the higher functioning calcium in the body due to the consumption of magnesium, and that magnesium helps release prostaglandins, which help to reduce inflammation and regulate blood pressure.

Organic Mango Butter

organic mango butter

Mango butter is a soft, off-white natural butter that is extracted from the kernels of the mango tree. Mango butter is often used alongside shea and cocoa butters to create a rich, luxurious, and soft hand and body cream. Since mango butter is softer than the other two, when used in anti-aging face creams the addition of mango butter will not leave your skin heavy or greasy.

We here at Susie Q Skin believe in utilizing the best Mother Nature has to offer. This often means that we have to look farther than the conventionally used skin care ingredients. We want to offer you the best in nourishing, uplifting, and skin revitalizing ingredients. Mango butter is a great addition to our anti-aging KINDNESS Black Seed-C Creams and our Rose Fig Cream.

Here at Susie Q Skin we spend a great amount of time researching our ingredients to ensure you receive only the highest quality products. The mango butter we use is USDA certified organic mango butter. It is an off-white color that is solid at room temperature but will warm up when applied to your skin.

MSM (Methylsulfonylmethane)


Susie Q Ink Salve only uses the highest grade MSM. We source out from OptiMSM® from Bergstrom Nutrition out of nearby Vancouver, Washington.

Per their website: "MSM is organic sulfur. Sulfur is a key component of collagen that supports the skin’s structural framework. It is also a building block of keratin, the main structural constituent of hair and nails. MSM regulates the expression of both DSG3 & AQP3. DSG3 is responsible for the maintenance of the skin barrier to make cells more permeable and improve the absorption of nutrients. AQP3 is responsible for the regulation and distribution of water through the epidermis. Researchers have observed that OptiMSM® may modify pro-inflammatory mechanisms to alleviate exercise-induced soreness and support anti-oxidant levels in the body. Properties found in OptiMSM® can help deter the accumulation of oxidative damage that develops through aging and stress on the body. Well-documented and studied for safety and efficacy, OptiMSM® is considered safe for humans and animals. There is no known evidence of interactions between OptiMSM® and pharmaceuticals, herbs, vitamins, or minerals."

When used in topical skin care products such as Ink Salve, MSM helps facilitate not only the strengthening of the tissue, but also helps to drive the other benefits of the essential oils and plant extracts deeper into the dermal layer.

Organic Extra-Virgin Olive Oil

benefits of olive oil on skin

Aceite de Olio. Such a great oil. Olive oil is heavy, rich, and a beautiful green color. That is, of course, as long as you source un-refined, extra-virgin, organic olive oil. Excellent hydrator with a high fatty acid profile. So yummy for your skin, that is why we love Olive Oil!

Olive oil has many benefits, everything from plumping up dry skin to helping to protect from cancerous cells. Here are a few reasons why we chose extra-virgin, organic olive oil for our products.

Cancer- everyone has been affected by cancer. I lost my mother 15 years ago to it. In her short lifetime, she battled several kinds of cancer, including many skin cancers that she had removed over the years. My mother was a sun-lover in the 60’s and 70’s. She would bake in the sun with mineral oil all over her beautiful body. We didn’t know the dangers of petroleum-based oil and chemical sunscreens in those days. Now we do. Topical application of olive oil products have been tested and proven to show a reduction in UVB-induced skin tumors. Using a product daily like our No Regrets or our Calming Facial Oil Serum will help to protect your skin from UVB damage.

Vitamins- your skin is your biggest organ, so it is critical to be selective about what you put on your face and body. Olive oil has large amounts of vitamins A, D, K and E. All these are critical to the youthful feel and protection of your skin. Vitamin E has been a part of many studies showing the protective nature of the ingredient and the repair it can facilitate of damaged skin. This includes all skin issues from eczema and psoriasis, to acne and sunburns.

Won’t Clog Your Pores- this is critical when creating a facial cleansing oil. Using oils that are either too heavy, or that have too high of a lipid profile, will clog your pores, which is the opposite of what you want to do when cleansing your skin. Olive oil is an effective pore cleanser, without leaving a heavy, greasy residue.

Hydration-hydration with natural ingredients from the outside and the inside is a key factor in slowing down the signs of aging. Skin that has been treated to effective oil treatments daily will have that dewy, fresh look. Hydrating the under layers of aging skin can help reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.

Make-Up Remover- extra-virgin olive oil is a key component of our No Regrets Eye Make-Up remover and Facial Cleansing Oil. That is because olive oil is very effective at removing waterproof mascara and eyeliner. If you have false eyelashes, don’t worry. You just put a little of the No Regrets on a q tip, and remove your eye liner, then proceed to wash the rest of your face like normal.


passionflower extract

Passionflower is used in Susie Q Ink Oil to help with inflammation and pain. Passionflower has been used for centuries as a sleep aid and to help calm nerves. It has a strong calming effect on the skin and body, which makes it very useful when applying to tattoos or inflamed skin. Historical use in body salves and treatments were to help relieve pain and nervous exhaustion. When you apply Susie Q Ink Oil onto your skin, even right at the tattoo parlor when you are just getting finished, you can reap the holistic benefits of passionflower immediately.

Pink Himalayan Sea Salt

pink himalayan sea salt

Technical Name: Sodium Chloride

Botanical Origin: Pakistan

I have pink Himalayan sea salt lamps all around my house and office, do you? I love not only the light they let off, but also the way they make me “feel”. No actually feeling a difference that I can document, but I do believe my air and space are healthier because of them. Pink Himalayan salt has been said to be the healthiest and cleanest salt available today.

Pink Himalayan salt comes from the Punjab region of Pakistan. The salt fields there are so old that it is said the salt mined from there is from the original, primal sea.

Pink Himalayan salt is comprised of 84 minerals and trace elements.

Pink Himalayan sea salt is said to help those who suffer from asthma. You can now find Himalayan salt caves all around the country where you can go and sit inside a cave made completely of salt (manmade cave, of course, since Himalayan salt isn’t naturally found in say…Manhattan, Kansas). This therapy is called Halotherapy and has been proven to be very beneficial for individuals suffering from chronic bronchitis and other breathing disorders.

Regular use of pink Himalayan salt can help to balance your body’s pH. Keeping your body and skin in a natural, pH balanced state can help with skin issues such as eczema, psoriasis, acne, dry skin, sunburns, etc.

Pink Himalayan sea salt can help purify the air (hence the lamps everywhere). Pink Himalayan salt acts as a hygroscopic agent, which means that it absorbs the water from the air and traps the pollutants and positive ions floating around in the air. What this means for a bath soak or body scrub is that when these salts are dissolved in the water, it pulls these impurities from your skin. This helps to leave your skin and the air cleaner, and the pollutants are washed down the drain.

Regular use of pink Himalayan sea salt bath soaks can also help to reduce water bloating, reduce aging of skin, improves vascular health, reduces muscle and period cramps, and help to improve skin health.

Organic Pomegranate Oil

anti-aging skin care

Pomegranate oil! Have you heard about how it is the new rage in skin care? Well, it is an excellent tropical oil and we have incorporated it into several of Susie Q Skin care products.

Pomegranate oil is derived from the pressing of the seeds of a pomegranate. The pomegranate oil use in Susie Q Skin products is cold-processed, unrefined, organic, and Kosher certified. You will find it listed in ingredient decks as Punica Granatum.

Pomegranate oil, as you can imagine, is a HUGE source of natural Vitamin C. Vitamin C is best used in skin care products to help brighten complexions and to help naturally boost collagen production. Products that incorporate pomegranate oil can help to decrease sun and age spots, firm the skin, naturally brighten, and help reduce the appearance and production of fine lines and wrinkles.

Anti-oxidants (there is that word again), work to fight the aging process. Every part of our bodies age just like metal rusts. Oxygen and pollutants are absorbed daily through our water, food and air, so it is critical that we combat all that damage with products that have naturally derived anti-oxidants. Pomegranate oil is one of those. Pomegranate oil products can help to reduce appearance of wrinkles, sun damage, skin inflammation, acne, psoriasis, and dandruff.

Using products with pomegranate oil will help reduce inflammation, which makes it an excellent ingredient for those of us suffering from acne. Pomegranate seed oil can also help to eliminate the bacteria that causes acne.

Pomegranate oil is said to help protect the skin from sun damage. This is both by decreasing the inflammation through fighting free radicals, and through the natural vitamin C.

According to, pomegranate seed oil helps to stimulate keratinocytes, which are cells found in the outer layer of our skin. By boosting these cells, pomegranate seed oil products help to reduce sun damage, brighten skin, and help to repair damaged skin.

Individuals who suffer from eczema and psoriasis can benefit from pomegranate seed oil products. Pomegranate seed oil helps to moisturize the skin and reduce inflammation, without leaving it greasy or heavy. When you are treating eczema and psoriasis, it is critical not to clog the pores by coating the skin as it needs oxygen to help it heal.


retinol lotion

Retinol is one of the most widely used, and most widely prescribed skin care ingredient. Retinol based products are beneficial to those with oily and acnic skin, to those fighting Father Time and working to prevent premature aging in their skin, and for those with previous sun damage to their skin. In our quest to create the most natural and most effective skin care possible we researched several versions of retinol and found this specific version of retinalhyde to be much more effective on the skin and the best retinol ingredient for all skin types.

Our ingredient is called IconicA. It is a patented delivery system of retinalhyde that makes it more stable than standard retinalhyde, and makes it more effective inside the cells. It does this by combining the retinalhyde with cyclodextrin. This creates an end ingredient that is more stable (will not oxidize like traditional retinols), and which is protected by an oil barrier. This oil barrier bursts when applied to the skin, pushing the retionalhyde deep into the cells where it begins to do its work.

Retinalhyde, or IconicA, has been tested and proven to be more quickly effective on the skin, and more gentle than retinol or other retinol ingredients. Retinalhyde is used in skincare products to help reduce and/or eliminate the effects of sun damage, gently exfoliate aging dead skin, bringing newer skin to the surface, and balancing sebum production.

Retinalhyde converts to retinoic acid more effectively than retinol, and it does this inside the cells, not on the cells, so you will not experience the drying and peeling effect like you will with Retinol or Retinoic Acid products.

In a study done in 1999, skincare products with 0.05% retinal were proven to completely erase the effects of sun damage on skin and return skin to the same collagen level as before the sun damage.

Retinal products have also been tested for their ability to fight acne and overproduction of sebum. Retinalhyde was proven to be more effective than retinol or retinoic acid in fighting the bacteria formation of acneic skin.

Retinal has also been proven to be more gentle on the skin than traditional retinol products. Many individuals will experience a burning and peeling of the skin when using pure retinol or retinoic acid products. Retinal was tested and was shown to be nourishing and have less burning effect when used on a daily basis.

Rose Geranium Essential Oil

benefits of rose geranium on skin

Method of Extraction: Steam Distilled
Plant Part: Leaf
Country of Origin: Madagascar
Ingredient Name: Pelargonium Roseum

Acne. Regardless if you are a teenager or a 40-year-old, no one likes acne. Just the word elicits an oily, greasy, embarrassing feeling. If you’ve ever suffered from acne, at any age, you immediately hate its ugly little (sometimes not so little) head. I am right there with you. I’ve been battling acne since I was diagnosed with cystic acne at the age of 12. It is a daily battle that must be attacked from the food we eat, the stress we feel, and the skin care we use.

Rose Geranium essential oil is one of those essential oils that people can either love or hate. I have met individuals who can pull this particular scent out of a product that has very little, and then others who cannot detect it at all. Rose Geranium is not rose, nor is it geranium, although sometimes vendors will blend those two together, and call it “rose geranium”. Please note this is not actual rose geranium. Rose geranium is its own plant and has its own set of skin benefits.

Rose Geranium is composed of citronellol, geraniol, and citronellyl formate, primarily. The combination of these three components in rose geranium essential oil has been tested and proven to show marked reduction in inflammation. Rose Geranium oil, when applied topically, can help decrease the swelling and pain in raised acne spots.

Rose Geranium is generally considered to be non-toxic, non-irritant and generally non-sensitizing.

Rose Geranium essential oil is anti-bacterial and antiseptic. This is a particular benefit to individuals battling oily, acneic skin. Killing off the bad bacteria before it can get clogged in your pores is highly beneficial in clearing up acne.

Eczema and psoriasis- When I do demos at the natural food stores, I get someone almost every time asking about products that help to combat eczema and psoriasis. Rose Geranium is considered a cicatristant and a humectant, which means that it hydrates the skin and helps battle scars and scar tissue. Individuals with eczema covered skin know that applying creams that are heavy and greasy, and that don’t allow the skin to breathe only makes the condition worse. Sufficient oxygen flow is essential to healing all skin.

Organic Rosehip Seed Oil

organic rosehip seed oil

Rosehips are full of vitamins C, A, E, and B-complex, as well as calcium, iron, selenium, manganese, magnesium, potassium, and zinc. They also contain natural lycopene, pectin, lutein, and beta-carotene. This makes rosehip seed oil full of natural anti-oxidants and vitamins for your skin.

Rosehip seed oil is a very powerful anti-oxidant which helps destroy free radicals on your skin. Free radicals are a major contributor to aging and disease, so the use of rosehip seed oil through Susie Q tattoo aftercare products can help alleviate those symptoms.

Rosehips are an excellent source of vitamin C. Vitamin C is all over the skin care market right now, from Vitamin C serums to creams and lotions. The rosehip seed oil in Susie Q Ink Salve will help boost the skin’s immunity by stimulating your white blood cells.

Rosehip seed oil is also known as a natural astringent, which helps to keep the skins elasticity strong to prevent wrinkles and aging. We use rosehip seed oil in the Ink Salve to help keep your tattoo strong, help keep the lines tight, and to help encourage firmness of the skin. There is nothing worse than an aged-looking work of art. Rosehip seed oil is also known to help burns and scars heal quickly.

Rosemary Essential Oil

benefits of rosemary on skin

Method of Extraction: Steam Distilled
Plant Part: Whole Plant
Country of Origin: Morocco
Ingredient Name: Rosmarinus Officinalis
Certifications: Wildcrafted

Rosemary is a well-known culinary herb. You can even find it on seasonal French fries here at Burgerville in Oregon. Rosemary essential oil not only tastes good, but it can be highly beneficial when used in skin care products.

We here at Susie Q Skin use rosemary essential oil in our acne products because of its strong anti-oxidant properties (think firming of the skin), and for its anti-bacterial properties.

Inflammation- this phrase is on repeat sometimes in what I write. That is because inflammation in the body is the cause of aging and disease. So, anything we can do to help reduce the inflammation in our skin, the better. Rosemary is excellent at reducing inflammation. Rosemary contains caffeic acid, rosmarinic acid, and a-pinene that all work to reduce swelling.

Circulation booster- rosemary essential oil, when massaged into the skin, can help boost the circulation beneath those dermal layers. This is critical to healing damaged skin and bringing newer, healthier layers to the top. Increased circulation also helps boost the radiance in your skin. Massaging in our Acne Prone Facial Oil Serum into your skin daily can help to make your skin look brighter and cleaner.

Fights Acne- Yes! The purpose of rosemary in our acne line! Skin care products that contain active levels of rosemary essential oil (think Acne Prone Facial Oil Serum), have been shown to reduce the production of Propionibacterium Acnes (this means reduction in acneic bacteria). Herbal remedies containing rosemary essential oil were proven to show antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, anticarcinogenic, and anti-microbial benefits.

Anti-Cancer- rosemary essential oil has been tested on cancer and non-cancerous cells, and it shows a particular benefit on cancerous cells.

Sea Buckthorn Oil

sea buckthorn oil

Sea buckthorn oil is also known as buckthorn oil. It has a bright orange color and is full of anti-oxidants and anti-inflammatory agents. Sea buckthorn berries are considered a superfruit because of their high concentration of nutrients, minerals, and vitamins. This plant has been used in the natural world for so long that even Genghis Kahn was a fan.

Sea buckthorn oil is full of anti-oxidants. It is hard to even describe how beneficial this oil can be. Vitamin C is just one of the anti-oxidants. The application of sea buckthorn to a tattoo helps to promote the formation of collagen. Collagen is a key component to keeping your skin firm and youthful looking. We lose collagen production in our skin as we age, so introducing anti-oxidants such as sea buckthorn oil through topical applications such as Ink Oil will help your skin to stay youthful in its appearance.

Organic, Raw, Fair Trade Shea Butter

fair trade shea butter

Shea butter is widely known in the natural skin care industry. Even companies like Vaseline use shea butter in their products! Astonishing since the rest of their ingredients are so sub-par. Shea butter is a rich, heavy, fat laden butter that when used in its raw, unprocessed form imparts many anti-aging benefits to the skin.

Shea butter is harvested from the African shea tree. Shea butter in Africa is considered a food. They use it to cook with, much like we use coconut oil or olive oil here. In Africa, all food items are considered “property” of women only. This means that only women can benefit financially from the harvesting of shea nuts. When you purchase products that contain shea butter, such as our KINDNESS Black Seed-C Creams, you will help to contribute to bettering lives of many women in Africa.

Shea butter has many benefits when used in natural skin care products.

  • Shea butter has a high fatty acid content. This means that it is highly moisturizing on your skin.
    • Oleic Acid (40-60%)
    • Stearic Acid (20-50%)
    • Linoleic Acid (3-11%)
    • Palmitic Acid (2-9%)
    • Linolenic Acid (<1%)
    • Arachidic Acid (<1%)
  • Shea butter melts at body temperature, so our  KINDNESS Black Seed-C Creams will warm up to the temperature of your skin and be easily applied to soothe skin
  • Shea butter absorbs rapidly, which means you will not be left greasy or oily
  • Unrefined shea butter is a natural source of vitamin a. Vitamin A is a natural form of retinol- one of the most sought after and effective anti-aging ingredients.
  • Reduces blemishes and fine lines/wrinkles 
  • Helps soothe skin conditions such as eczema, psoriasis and dermatitis
  • Shea butter provides natural UV protection
  • Shea butter helps prevent stretch marks
  • Shea butter products can help lessen the pain caused from radiation treatments
  • Shea butter has strong anti-inflammatory and anti-tumor effects
  • Regular use of shea butter products can prevent effects of photo-aging
  • Daily use of shea butter products helps to boost collagen production
  • Shea butter products ease severely dry skin, winter’s itch, and re-hydrates processed, brittle hair
  • No known allergic reactions to shea butter

Shea butter in its purest form is dark yellow in color and has a strong shea nut smell. Not all shea butter used in skincare products are the same. The amount of times shea butter is processed and the way in which it is extracted directly affects the degradation of the butter, which in turn reduces its effectiveness on your skin. Many companies choose to use ultra-processed shea butter (extracted using chemicals such as hexane) as it has much less smell and is softer. This means it is easier to incorporate into products like traditional lotions, which are mostly made of water. Some even use shea oil, which has been stripped of the majority of the beneficial fatty acids. Ultra-refined shea butter has been said to have been stripped of up to 95% of its vitamins.

Here at Susie Q Skin we only purchase raw, unprocessed shea butter. This means that all the enzymes and anti-aging properties are still intact. This also means that our products can have a shea nut smell, and they can have a slightly gritty feeling. When shea butter is melted and then cooled it can create small granules inside the cream. These granules melt once they touch your skin but sometimes you will feel these upon the initial touch. They are completely natural and are an indicator that the shea butter is unprocessed.

Susie Q Skin goes through a thorough process to vet all our vendors. We believe in living a high-quality life and we expect all our raw materials to impart that same quality to our products. We research every oil, butter, vitamin, essential oil, fragrance, hydrosol, plant extract, etc., to ensure that we are getting the purest version. You can feel assured that Susie Q Skin ingredients will deliver the utmost in natural and pure in all our products.

Organic Sunflower Oil

organic sunflower oil

Organic sunflower oil is a primary oil in Susie Q Ink Oil non-drying wash. I love the feel and glide of sunflower oil on my skin. It is not a heavy oil, so it doesn’t leave your skin feeling clogged, but it has strong emollient properties to leave you hydrated.

When we picture sunflowers, we imagine massive fields of beautiful flowers tracking the sun. I love the energizing effect of the bright yellow flowers, and I love that they are sun worshippers much like myself.

Sunflower oil has an impressive fatty acid content. It includes palmitic acid, stearic acid, oleic acid, and linoleic acid. These fatty acids, along with vitamin E (sunflower is a rich source of vitamin E), work synergistically as anti-oxidants. Anti-oxidants specifically target your aging and damaged skin to help promote growth and healing. Vitamin E helps to regenerate cells, and it helps to reduce inflammation. It reduces free-radicals. Because of this, you can see a reduction in scarring, quicker wound healing, and a natural glow to your skin. This is specifically why we have used organic sunflower oil as our primary ingredient in Susie Q Ink Oil!

In addition to the free-radical benefits of organic sunflower oil, it is also great to help reduce inflammation. Inflammation will prolong the healing process for any wound, including tattoos, so the daily use of Ink Oil will help combat the effects of inflammation.

Organic sunflower oil is also widely used in the skin care industry because of its ability to protect the skin by strengthening the membranes. This makes it harder for bacteria and viruses to attack the body. Sunflower oil can help protect your new tattoo from getting infected.

Tamanu Oil

polynesian tamanu oil

Tamanu oil is not a widely known ingredient, although it should be. Tamanu oil is very high in anti-oxidants and is a natural treatment to help prevent oily skin, blemishes. It helps to heal scars and moisturizes the skin.

Tamanu oil is considered a tropical oil, and is widely used in Polynesia. You can use tamanu oil directly on the skin. We use tamanu oil in our Susie Q Ink Oil because it is so beneficial in the prevention of scarring. It also helps to balance out the sebum production. Keeping your tattoo looking fresh and new is always our goal, and tamanu oil helps to do this well.

The use of tamanu oil on other aging skin is also greatly beneficial. Tamanu oil has been used as a natural treatment for acne, scars, eczema, psoriasis, fungus, stretch marks, age spots, scarring, and dermatitis. The high fatty acid content of tamanu oil makes it a great emollient for your freshly tattooed skin.

Turmeric Essential Oil and Powder

turmeric essential oil

Turmeric essential oil is one of the four key essential oils used in Susie Q Ink Oil and Ink Salve. Turmeric can be found in supplements, seasonings, teas, extracts, and essential oils, and now it is in your tattoo aftercare products!

Turmeric is known for its massive health benefits, including wound healing, reducing inflammation, pain reduction, slowing the aging process, and to help prevent cancer. Turmeric has so many key qualities, which is why I added it to Susie Q skin care products. Remember, when you apply Susie Q products, you are not only getting the topical benefits of all our amazing ingredients, but you also get the aromatherapy benefits.

Curcumin is the key driving component of turmeric. It gives it the yellow color and the spicy smell. Susie Q products have an enticing smell all their own and everyone, men and women alike, becomes addicted to the smell.

Turmeric is one of the current super-ingredients in the market right now used for inflammation. Inflammation is thought to be what ages your body. Cells oxidize and get inflamed, and then we get wrinkles, age spots, and look older. Inflammation is also a contributing factor to diseases such as cancer and heart disease. Susie Q products will not cure cancer and will not cure heart disease but turmeric is known to help with these issues, and is being studied right now for its effect on killing colon cancer.

Incorporating anti-inflammatory ingredients, such as turmeric, in your skin care regimen can help reduce the effects of inflammation on your skin. The medical community credits turmeric with being similar in strength to some of the strongest prescription anti-inflammatory products on the market. You can receive these benefits from topical application, as well as by taking it internally. This means that applying Susie Q Ink Oil and Ink Salve to a fresh tattoo will help the swelling go down. Remember that continual application is the key to realizing the full potential of Susie Q products.

Turmeric is also known to improve liver function, which helps detoxify the body. Anytime you inflict harm to your body, there are a series of biological responses by your organs: adrenaline production is increased, serotonin levels can be affected, and stress accumulates in the organs. All of these responses leave by-products that have to be filtered and managed by your liver. The use of turmeric, topically or internally, can help promote increased liver function and will help flush out toxins from your skin. After getting a tattoo, the use of Ink Oil and Ink Salve will deliver turmeric to the affected area and will help to detoxify the area.

Vitamin C-Tetrahexyldecyl Ascorbate

vitamin c skin care

Tetrahexyldecyl Ascorbate, our choice in vitamin c, has been tested and proven to be more gentle and more effective than traditional vitamin c’s, such as l-ascorbic acid or ascorbyl phosphate. This vitamin c source is considered to be the highest grade vitamin c to brighten skin, control sebum production and boost collagen production.

Vitamin C helps to boost collagen production, fight the development of fine lines and wrinkles, brighten your skin tone, and lighten sun spots and age spots. Vitamin C and retinol are two of the most recommended ingredients for anti-aging skincare.

Tetrahexyldecyl Ascorbate is in a lipid form, which means that is has been solubilized in a fat-soluble format, so the end product is more bioavailable. This means that when used in products like our Vitamin C Retinol Intensive, your face will feel and show the benefits faster than if you were to use a product containing another type of vitamin c.

Tetrahexyldecyl Ascorbate has been tested and proven to show the following benefits on the skin:

Reduces melanin production

Eliminates age spots

Increases collagen production and protects existing collagen better than ascorbic

Decreases effects of UV-A and UV-B exposure

Protects skin better against UV-B than other vitamin c’s

Delivers pure vitamin c 50 times better than ascorbic acid

10% level is highly effective in treating acne


Vitamin E, Sunflower Based

benefits of vitamin e on skin

Here at Susie Q Skin we have some very specific requirements for all our ingredients. Susie is adamant that not only are the oils raw, virgin, fair trade, and organic if possible, but she is also very particular about not using products that contain soy. Reducing inflammation and hydrating the body from the outside and the inside is the best way to have a healthier, younger looking body. This includes having beautiful, healthy skin.

Vitamin E is an ingredient that so many people recognize. We hear about it in so many skin care advertisements, we hear about it in supplements, and we hear about it in food. Vitamin E is a highly moisturizing, very effective anti-oxidant and one that our bodies definitely need. The key, though, is to ensure the source of your vitamin E. This is where the particular nature of Susie’s personality comes in to play.

Vitamin E serves two purposes in skin care products. The first is that it helps your body fight free radicals, which means reducing inflammation, generating healthier looking skin, and reducing the signs of aging. The second is as a natural preservative for skin care products. It is not a broad-spectrum preservative, so water based/emulsified products cannot just have vitamin e as the only preservative, but in truly all-natural oil and butter based products like those sold by Susie Q Skin, vitamin e works great to keep oils and butters from oxidizing.

Vitamin E should only be used in small amounts for skincare. Vitamin E is a very heavy oil and, sometimes, can cause breakouts in certain individuals. There are so many beneficial oils and butters out there that have a wealth of skin benefits, adding a small amount of vitamin e to products is the ideal way to incorporate vitamin e. That way you get the healing benefits of all the oils and will not be as prone to breakouts. I will say that when I was 22 and took Accutane, I put straight up vitamin e oil on my lips. I thought they were going to completely shed right off my face they were so dry. It was great then, but I have so much more ingredient information now. If I were suffering from chapped lips now, the Rose Fig Cream is all I would use.

Vitamin E is most ideal when mixed with vitamin C. The combination of the two ingredients in one product can create a certain level of natural sun protection. We have blended these two in our KINDNESS Black Seed-C Creams and I love to use this when I’ve been out in the sun.

Vitamin E is excellent to help repair severely dry skin. Because vitamin e oil is such a heavy oil, and because it has such a high free racial profile, it works to penetrate that top layer of dead skin and work to bring healthier, more supple layers to the top.

One of the biggest requests I have from ladies is for a product that will help lighten or remove those pesky age/sun spots. As we age, and as we spend time in the sun, we can develop melanin issues. For some of us, these show up as small freckles, for others, they are what used to be called liver spots, more commonly now referred to as age or sun spots. Little brown patches of skin and they can show up anywhere! Vitamin E oil, especially when combined with a vitamin c, helps to fade those sun spots!