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Archive for April, 2009

  • Post-Procedure Options

    You just had a chemical peel or microdermabrasion treatment and you’re anxiously waiting to see results. So what do you do until then and when can you resume your natural routine?

    Makeup – Depending on the procedure, it is important to wait a few days to possibly a couple weeks before applying makeup. Special moisturizing ointments and sun-screens are usually prescribed by your doctor or dermatologist to apply after the procedure. Wait until sutures are removed, if any, before applying make up. Once your doctor says it is ok, you can apply makeup to cover up the bruises and redness.

    There are several options you can consider to help your skin recover faster after a resurfacing procedure. GliSODin Skin Nutrients developed supplements to take pre- and post- procedure.  These supplements support the wound-healing process and prepare your skin for non-invasive procedures.

    Other companies make specific products, like NeoCutis BIO-GEL,  that nurture and refresh stressed skin after such procedures. They are free of alcohol, oils, fragrances and colorants so they won’t irritate your skin more than it already is.

    Copper Peptides and Emu Oil are also believed to help skin recovery after chemical peels. Copper peptides rebuild the skin and help it react better to certain treatments involving lasers or strong chemicals. Emu oil improves scar healing and is naturally anti-inflammatory. It soothes your skin while reducing swelling. Talk with your dermatologist before using any product to know which one is best for your skin type. .

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  • The Power of Feverfew

    Feverfew, a member of the sunflower family, does not induce fevers as the name might suggest; it is actually known to do the opposite. The name feverfew is adapted from the Latin word febrifugia or “fever reducer.” It’s been used for reducing fevers, headaches, joint pains, and even helping digestive problems. Some believe that the chemicals within feverfew (parthenolide and tanetin) inhibit the release of serotonin and prostaglandin, which both aid in the onset of migraines.

    Feverfew also limits the inflammation of blood vessels in the head which is why it has been used to calm redness and swelling. If your face tends to get flushed or red, try using a soothing, feverfew moisturizer. It calms irritated skin and reduced redness.

    A study on migraine sufferers was conducted in the 1980s. It was shown that ingesting feverfew leaves daily reduced the frequency of migraines. Several different methods were used in this study, some even involving mixing the feverfew leaves with salix alba leaves. Both methods had similar results.

    This does not mean it is safe to eat the feverfew leaves you find outside. Companies that incorporate feverfew into their products use a specific amount that is approved by the FDA. Talk to your healthcare provider if you have migraines to find out which method and treatment is best for you

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  • Sunburn Treatment

    Oops – you did it again. You stayed at the beach too long, hung out by the pool without proper sun-screen, or thought you were ready for that extra minute in the tanning booth. What you thought was going to beautify you actually made you look like a lobster. Your skin is red, burns, and it’s hard to move. You don’t have to suffer for long because there are a few treatments you can try to help assuage these symptoms.

    One of the most important things to do to sunburned skin is to keep it properly hydrated and moisturized. Applying products that contain Aloe vera and/or vitamin E can really help calm the inflammation in your skin. Creams with Hydrocortisone can also help the inflammation.

    Benzocaine and Lidocaine are FDA-approved anesthetic chemicals found in topical creams and gels. You can find them at most drug stores. They numb your skin to help stop the pain associated with sunburns. Be sure to talk to a dermatologist first to know the right amount to apply to your burn.

    Emu Oil is a natural substance derived from the fat of an emu. It has been used for thousands of years to alleviate pain, burns, and dry skin. It also has anti-inflammatory properties making it a great topical treatment for sunburns.

    Last, but definitely not least, is the most important tip for avoiding sunburns – wear proper sun-screen!! Use a stronger SPF if you plan on staying out in the sun longer. Reapply every two hours, no matter what the label says, and make sure to reapply more often if you get into the water. The best way to treat a problem is to prevent it.

    Did you know that sunburns don’t only affect humans and animals? Sunburns affect trees and plants, causing a lot of damage to their branches, bark, leaves, and tissue.

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  • The Importance of Salicylic Acid

    The primary cause of many skin issues is clogged pores. Sebum is released by our body to naturally lubricate our skin and hair so they won’t get too dry. If the sebum tries to leave our pores but is blocked, a pimple or blemish will occur. Salicylic Acid is a chemical found in multiple cleansers and acne products that unclogs pores, promotes skin renewal, and allows for sebum to pass freely through our skin.

    Salicylic Acid is a Beta-Hydroxy-Acid derived from willow bark. It is often preferred over Alpha Hydroxy Acids because of how gentle it is on the skin, which is especially important for people with sensitivity to certain products. It is great for use on acne prone skin or to prevent acne from appearing because of its power to unclog pores and regenerate new cell growth. It’s even used in shampoos to treat dandruff!

    Salicylic acid was first noted in the 5th century BC. Hippocrates wrote about how the inner bark of the willow treated headaches and fevers. The Cherokees and other Native-American tribes were using this bark for the same medicinal purposes. Raffaele Piria, an Italian chemist, was able to convert the inner-bark substance into a special component, which through oxidation becomes the type of salicylic acid used today.

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  • Why You Should Use Alpha Hydroxy Acids

    Many of our skin care products contain numerous forms of Alpha Hydroxy Acid. But what exactly does it do and where does it come from?

    Alpha Hydroxy Acids are compounds that derive from the foods we eat. These compounds include: glycolic acid from sugar cane, lactic acid from milk, malic acid from apples, citric acid from fruit, and tartaric acid from grape wine. So if any of your creams, moisturizers, or exfoliants contain one of these acids, you’ll know where it comes from.

    In order for the product to actually work and be effective, these compounds must be small enough to penetrate into your skin. This is why Glycolic Acid is used the most in treatments. It has the smallest molecular size out of all the AHAs, allowing it to penetrate deep below the skin’s surface and reduce the appearance of wrinkles, acne scarring, hyperpigmentation and improve many other skin conditions.

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  • Hair Removal Options

    Shaving, waxing, plucking, creams, lasers, and just about anything can rid our legs, arms, face, and underarms from unwanted hair. Some are more painful than others and some more expensive than others, so which one is best for you?

    Shaving– This might be the quickest and simplest way to remove hair but not the least painful. It can result in cuts, nicks, and burns that lasts for days. If you don’t have time for other hair removal techniques, choose a razor with the least abrasiveness. Many companies are developing razors with soft bars of body wash and lotions around the razor. This protects your skin from the friction of a razor if it’s not properly hydrated and reduces the occurrence of burns or cuts.

    Waxing – This technique already sounds painful! But it is very effective when done correctly with results lasting a few days or up to a week. Choose the type of wax that is right for your skin type and won’t irritate you. Make sure your hair is at least a quarter inch long or else it won’t work. After spreading the wax and placing the strip, wait a few seconds and then pull the strip in the opposite direction of the hair growth. Some companies make pre-waxed strips that you heat up in your hand, so decide which kind is best for your skin before buying it.

    Hair Removal Creams– Depilatory creams work by dissolving the top layer of your hair. They can be kind of messy and have a funky smell but they won’t leave you with cuts or nicks, and when removed properly, there will be little to no irritation. They take a little longer, though, because of the amount time you have to leave them on your skin. It’s also very important to test out a small patch of hair before doing an entire region to make sure you are not allergic to the ingredients.

    Laser Hair Removal– When you finally get tired of removing that unwanted hair almost every day, it might be time to consider laser hair removal. Unlike all the other methods, laser hair removal is permanent and reduces or eliminates hair anywhere on the body except for the eye area. The low-energy laser penetrates your skin and inactivates the hair follicles in that region, permanently stopping hair growth! It takes more than one session per region so talk with a dermatologist to see if laser hair removal is right for you

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  • How Important is Exfoliating?

    Is exfoliating our skin really necessary? If it is, how often should we do it? And why?

    The outermost layer of our skin is really just dead skin cells. The new, fresh cells are underneath. When we exfoliate, we remove this dead layer of cells and reveal new, brighter skin. Imagine the build up within our top layer of skin after all the lotions, perfumes, and make up we use. The gunk and residue gets left behind and builds up in our skin. By exfoliating, we remove the residue and we are left with cleaner, brighter, skin. So yes, exfoliating is very important.

    You don’t need to exfoliate every day. Some people actually shouldn’t because their skin might get irritated. Exfoliants used on your face are different from the kinds used on the body. Facial exfoliants are gentler and can be used everyday or every few days, depending on the formula. Read the label first before you start a regimen. Body exfoliants can be used in the shower once or twice a week, depending on your skin type. Talk with a dermatologist to see what exfoliating regimen is best for you and your skin.

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  • Healthy, delicious, and quick lunches to take to work

    You don’t have to stop at the deli to have that gourmet sandwich, you can make them in your kitchen for work or any on-the-go occasion.

    When you’re at the grocery store, buy any type of whole grain or wheat bread. Not only are they much healthier, they taste great, too. Meats from the deli section or fresh, rotisserie chicken can be used. Try chicken or turkey meats instead of beef for less calories and fat. Get some lettuce and tomato ( I recommend butter lettuce, but make sure to wash it before you use it!), cheese if you’d like, and whatever condiments you want to add to the sandwich. Instead of mayo, grab any “light” dressing, like thousand island.

    Pop two slices of bread in the toaster. When they’re done, spread the condiments on each side. Make sure to put the tomato slice in between the meats so it won’t wear down the bread. In less than 5 minutes, your gourmet, toasted sandwich is ready for wherever you go!

    If you’re not into sandwiches, try making some penne pasta the night before with a light marinara sauce. Avoid alfredo sauce because of the fat. For a lower carb pasta, some brands make their pastas out of wheat. They taste great and not much different. Store the pasta in the fridge the night before and put it together in the morning before you head out to work. Don’t forget the fork!

    You can also check your grocery store to see if they make pre-made salads. Many of them come with chicken in a variety of flavors – from caesar to waldorf. These pre-made salads are the quickest lunch to take with you to work. Just drizzle on the dressing, shake it up, and enjoy!

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  • Under-Eye Circles and Puffiness

    Many women, and even men, get them- those annoying dark circles or bags underneath your eyes. They’re caused from veins carrying blue (deoxygenated) blood beneath the surface of the skin and can be very irritating. Allergies and fatigue can cause the skin underneath the eyes to look pale, making dark circles more noticeable. A lack of vitamins and nutrients, such as vitamin K or iron, in the diet may also be to blame, leading to discoloration.

    Whether you had a long night, didn’t get enough sleep, or are under a lot of stress, those annoying things keep coming back. The quickest way to hide these dark circles is by using concealer. But be careful when choosing one because the biggest mistake women make is using a concealer that is too light for their skin. Stick to gold tones that match your skin because the gold will counter-act the blue’ish tones. Make sure to blend the concealer around your entire eye, not just underneath. This makes your entire eye look naturally bright and you won’t have one bright block underneath your eye.

    Concealer can go a long way, masking the discoloration temporarily, but what about when the concealer wears off? You can look into buying special under-eye products that help get rid of these circles so you can skip the concealer entirely.

    If you are going to buy an under-eye treatment, make sure to read up on the special ingredients these serums and creams use. Not all of them will be the right one for you and your eyes. If you have sensitive skin, go for a milder and gentler formula so you won’t irritate your skin. Depending on the severity of your dark circles, different products have different strengths so make sure to get the right one for your condition.

    Always try to get at least 7 hours of sleep and eat well balanced meals throughout the day because the most important step you can take to treat your dark circles and puffiness is to cleanse your body on the inside first.

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  • Sunless Tanning

    Going to the beach to get that ultimate glow is always fun and relaxing. Without sunscreen, though, it can be very dangerous to your skin and body health. 90% of skin cancer cases have been linked to exposure to ultra violet rays. These rays are even stronger at tanning salons.  If you want to stay healthy and avoid the risks, start considering sunless tanning.

    Sunless tanning is a great, effective, and safe alternative to exposing yourself to the natural sun or going to a tanning salon. You don’t have to worry about dangerous UV rays, photo-damage, and skin cancer when you use a tanning lotion.

    Tanning lotions coat your skin with beautiful, safe pigments that give your body a glow without all the risks. There are multiple types of sunless tanning lotions to choose from depending on your skin tone and the type of tan you want to achieve. Avoid the orange streaks and uneven skin tones with new, innovative formulas like the one found in SkinCeuticals Sans Soleil.

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