Margo McIntosh believes everyone should feel beautiful. The skincare expert has has been an aesthetician for about 17 years and started an eponymous bath and body line in 2000. Although the Michigander was tempted to soak up the sun when moving to the Lone Star State more than 20 years ago, she opted to save her skin from damage.
Today, she devotes all her time to perfecting her clients' skin at Uptown Wellness Center. When we learned that McIntosh balances Botox with a natural skin and body care regimen, we had to sit down with her to learn how she reconciles the two.
CultureMap: There are so many beauty products on the market already. Why did you start Margo's Bath & Body?
“Nothing can get rid of lines like Botox and fillers,” McIntosh says. “There will always be a place for it.”
Margo McIntosh: As an aesthetician, I did a day of beauty with a facial and salt scrubs, so I found myself experimenting with salts and essential oils. People pay about $75 a pop, so I thought about doing one where people can do a scrub in their own home, without scheduling constraints and for the fraction of the cost. And, unlike a lot of products, I wanted to have as few ingredients as possible. I make scrubs, shower gel and body souffle, and I am currently working on reed diffusers in two different fragrances.
CM: Are the ingredients in your bath and body products organic?
MM: No — as organic as possible, but synthetics help keep products fresh. But I use simple ingredients. For my salt scrub, it's just high-quality sea salt, jojoba oil and fragrance.
CM: As far as smooth and clear skin goes, what do you suggest?
MM: My salt scrub is the most amazing thing — you buff it on your skin dry and let the salt fall back in the tub and dissolve in the water. With the jojoba oil and salt, it's so hydrating and leaves your skin soft for a day or two. It's really important to use a good cleanser with lactic acid in it. I use Revision brightening face wash, but Actifirm is also good. Change pillow cases at least once a week, and makeup brushes should be cleaned every few weeks.
CM: What's the difference between a salt and sugar scrub — aside from the obvious key ingredients?
MM: Sugar doesn't exfoliate as well as salt because it's not as firm. And yeast feeds off sugar, so it's not good for women to sit in a tub of sugar because of the risk of yeast infections. Salt is very therapeutic and has added benefits too.
CM: Is there any place you shouldn't put the scrub?
MM: Not really. You can also use it on your face — and men can use it too.
CM: You do Botox, fillers and laser hair removal too. What do you think of the modern-day Dallas bombshell?
MM: Here, there are a lot of people who want to look frozen. I don't like that at all; less is more. But nothing can get rid of lines like Botox and fillers. There will always be a place for it. I love that it makes people feel better about themselves. Before I worked for Dr. Traci Radford [medical director at Uptown Wellness Center], I was very hesitant about all of that stuff, but she combines homeopathic principles in her practice. And if she is okay with it, so am I.
CM: So you're not a hippie?
MM: Absolutely not. Even thought my products are mostly natural, you have to keep them safe and stable. I believe in science. I believe both nature and science should meet; there should be a happy medium between the two. I recently cut out red meat though. I read Skinny Bitch — it'll make you not want meat for months. Mass farming also freaks me out. Plus, I feel so much better when I keep it light with fish and greens.
MM: Well, my husband started watching Modern Family the other night, and when I was finished, the episode was over.
CM: Your current interesting read?
MM: Getting Things Done by David Allen.