Tag Archives: acne

Add Apples To Your Overall Skin Care Routine

In language, history, folklore and mythology apple references abound. We routinely compare “apples to oranges,” we believe that ” an apple a day keeps the doctor away,” and we’ve all heard of the garden incident that caused the downfall of mankind. William Tell shot an apple from his son’s head, and apples also have the distinguished honor of sharing a name with the first child of Chris Martin and Gwyneth Paltrow.

Add Apples To Your Overall Skin Care Routine

Whether as a symbol of beauty and rebirth or temptation and sin, there is little doubt that the apple holds an important place in our history for many reasons. And now we can add a new one to the list: apples are great for the skin.

Apples for Skin Care
Apples are rich in nutrients known to benefit the skin. Copper maintains melanin production to keep the skin protected against the harmful rays of the sun. Vitamin C restores collagen levels, boosting elasticity and rebuilding collagen levels. Vitamin A rejuvenates damaged skin tissues and promotes skin cell growth.

Oily Skin Face Pack
If your skin, tends to be oily, combine a freshly squeezed teaspoon of lemon juice with a teaspoon of yogurt, and a teaspoon of grated apple. The lactic acid in the yogurt will absorb excess oil and brighten and moisturize skin. Apply the mixture to your face and let it sit for about 15 minutes, Rinse with lukewarm water, pat skin dry and apply moisturizer.

Apple mash

Sensitive Skin Face Pack
Got sensitive skin? There’s an app(le) for that. Boil a small apple until it’s tender and remove from hot water. Let it cool and peel it. Using a fork, mash the apple in a bowl. Add a teaspoon of ripe banana and a teaspoon of pure coconut cream. Mix to a smooth paste. Rub it into your skin and let it sit for twenty minutes. Use lukewarm water to rinse and pat dry.

Normal to Dry Skin
You can make a skin pack for normal to dry skin by combining a teaspoon of grated apple with a half teaspoon of organic honey. Mix to make a paste. Apply pack to your skin and allow to sit for about fifteen minutes. You can also use this recipe as a spot treatment for acne by applying the paste to the affected area and allowing to sit for twenty minutes.

Additional Benefits
Apples contain an exfoliating astringent that can help prevent acne and contains malic acid (AHA) for skin renewal. Apple cider vinegar can be used to relieve itching skin and scalp, regulate skin pH levels and exfoliate and soothe skin.

Apple cider vinegar

For Anti-Aging
A skin brightening, anti-aging mask can be made by combining a mashed apple with a teaspoon of orange, lemon, or grapefruit juice, one tablespoon of ground almond meal two crushed basil leaves and one tablespoon of cream, yogurt, or milk. Mash and apply to face. Leave on for 15 minutes, rinse and pat dry.

Are you using apples to maintain that glow? Let us know your apple skincare recipes. We love to share!

Tips for Controlling Common Skin Conditions

Dr. William’s Pink Pills For Pale People,” “Dr.Scott’s Electric Corsets and Belts, “Dr. Ayer’s Pectoral Plaster,” “Dr. Watson’s Worm Syrup.” It seems like, since time immemorial, there have been people ready to cash in on the belief that “for every problem, there is a solution.” However, attractive as it the phrase may sound, unfortunately it is not always true, and skin conditions are no exception. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t ways to make to make them better. Here is some expert advice on how you can handle some common skin conditions under control.

Under-eye bags

Under-Eye Bags
Under-eye bags are the result of fat that gathers in the lower eyelids, and become more prominent with age. According to Curology founder, David Lortscher, gravity, loss of collagen, and genetic factors are all responsible for the these pillow like protrusions, and the bad news is, they cannot be permanently eliminated and masks and eye creams usually don’t help. However, there are ways of minimizing the puffiness.

According to Lortsher, “proper head elevation during sleep, sleep itself, and decreased dietary ingestion of salt and alcohol are simple lifestyle changes that can help.” He adds, “Topical creams can also reduce swelling.” If more intense treatments are an option, the doctor allows that, “Surgical correction or blepharoplasty can lead to a semi-permanent solution. But, remember, with age and volume loss the under-eye bags can reappear.”

Melasma
Melasma is characterized by dark facial pigmentation. It is triggered by sun exposure, hormone treatments and pregnancy and may last for decades. While melasma research is still ongoing, topical treatments, such as the prescription medication Tri-Luma, are looming on the horizon and experts recommend sun avoidance and protection to keep the condition to a minimum.

Dermatologist checking skin

Stretch marks
Stretch marks appear when the tissue below your skin, called the dermis, tears after being stretched by rapid growth or weight gain. Lortscher explains that, “Stretch marks are difficult to treat because they are actually scars,” and, like most scars, may fade with time, but never fully disappear. But there is hope.

Lortscher says cosmetic fractionated layers offer the “best hope at improving the depressed and thinned texture of the skin and topical tretinoin may help to some extent through its collagen stimulating effect.”

Rosacea
Rosacea is the general term used to refer to the appearance of redness of the face, small, acne like bumps and dilated blood vessels. Rosacea affects the capillaries under the skin surface and, “As you might imagine,” Lortscher says, “there is no topical treatment that will remove these little blood vessels.”

Although rosacea is not completely curable, there are several ways to manage it. One way is to avoid triggers such as sun exposure, spicy foods, stress, and hot showers. Redness can also be decreased by using topical products containing metronidazole, tacrolimus, azelaic acid, and glycol acid.

Woman scratching her arm

Eczema
A catch all phrase applied to most skin inflammation, eczema can be caused by almost anything from stress to food allergies. Although not curable, eczema is easily controllable with topical antibiotics, emollients and steroids.

Keratosis Pilaris
About 50% of the population suffers from the genetic acne- like skin condition known as keratosis pillars. KP is usually found on the thighs and upper arms and consists of dry, rough bumps resulting from the accumulation of dead skin cells, and, as Lortscher says, is,”incurable and persistent, even with treatment.”

Thankfully, alpha hydroxy acids are helpful in sloughing off dead skin cells and allowing them to shed, so glycolic and lactic acids can be effective, as can coconut oil, although coconut oil should not be used on the face. More good news: the condition also tends to go away when the sufferer reaches his or her late 20’s or early 30’s.

What’s Great About the Kitavan Diet

Let’s take a moment to travel to a timeless, magical place; a place where the water is crystal clear and telecommunication is non-existent. A remote idyllic tropical island, of coral reefs, of Skull Caves, Orchid Gardens, and smiling faces. Welcome to Kitava Island, off the coast of Papua, New Guinea in the Pacific Ocean. While many find the quaintness of the island its most charming attraction, others may argue that Kitava is way ahead of its time. You see, Kitava, New Guinea may not be a leader in technology, but they do have something far superior and way ahead of the times as compared to most other places in the world. It has the Kitavan Diet.

Kitavan diet

Kitavan Diet
Perhaps the most noticeable thing about the Kitavans is what they don’t have; there is practically no diabetes, acne, cardiovascular disease, dementia, or blood pressure difficulty. What they do have, however, is an abundance of food. But, despite this abundance, they do not suffer from obesity, and they all have low diastolic blood pressure.

Research finds that the good health in Kitava is due to the local foods. Fresh fruit, tubers, coconut, and fish make up a good percentage of the Kitavan diet, with an extremely low consumption of Western food. The diet is also virtually absent of dairy products, coffee, tea, and alcohol, and contains very little margarine, oils, sugars, grain, and cereals. The most commonly eaten tubers are yam, sweet potato, cassava and taro, while banana, papaya, guava, pineapple, watermelon, and mango top the list of fruits. The fat intake is low, and most of the fat that is consumed is saturated fat or omega-3 fat from seafood.

Foods with Low GI
Another thing common to the foods found in the Kitavan diet is their low rating on the glycemic index, a measure of the ability of food with carbohydrates to raise glucose, or blood sugar, levels. A diet rich in high GI foods can tax the body, leading to excess body weight, heart disease, increase of diabetic symptoms, high cholesterol levels, and lack of energy. Tubers, which play a large part in the Kitavan diet, are among the islander’s primary source of carbohydrates and have a relatively low GI rating.

Sweet potato

Sweet Potatoes
Sweet potatoes are loaded with vitamin C and beta carotene, both known to be powerful antioxidants which protect against aging and cancer. They are also known to increase levels of adiponectin, a protein hormone which offers health benefits to diabetics and pre -diabetics and may also protect against atherogenesis, the abnormal formation of fat deposits within the arteries; this would explain the low incidence of heart disease and diabetes on the island.

Coconuts
Besides having anti-fungal, anti-viral and anti-bacterial properties, the triglycerides in coconut may promote weight loss. A study published in the International Journal of Obesity and Metabolic disorders found that coconuts increased calorie burn and decreased storage of fat in overweight men. Another study found that the fat consumed in coconut oil could increase the metabolism of fat and calorie expenditure in women.

Coconut

The Kitavan Diet and Acne
In 1990, Swedish general practitioner, Steffan Lindeberg, performed health examinations on more than a thousand Kitavans, age 10 years and older, with 25% of the subjects age 15 to 25 and found not a single case of acne. This is likely attributable to lifestyle and diet, rather than genetic factors, since Pacific Islanders with similar ethnic backgrounds living in more westernized societies were found to have a higher prevalence of acne.

What do you think about the Kitavan diet? Have we got something here? Weigh in with your opinions. We value them highly.

What Makes A Product Noncomedogenic?

Noncomedogenic. N-O-N-C-O-M-E-D-O-G-E-N-I-C. Noncomedogenic. It sounds like the word that stumped the runner up in the fourth grade spelling bee. If you’ve been hearing this word used a lot lately in the cosmetic industry and thinking it sounds impressive, its meant to. But is it, really? Let’s break it down.

Woman squeezing pimple

A comedo is the mildest form of acne, otherwise known as a pimple, whitehead, or blackhead. So technically you could say, “Wow, that’s a rather large comedo on your face.” as a more polite way of saying, “Wow, that’s a really big zit you have.” Non, of course means without, hence, noncomedogenic, when applied to a skin cleanser essentially means the product does not clog pores and will break down excess oils on your skin without stripping necessary moisture.

What Does “Noncomedogenic” Mean?
Although the term “noncomedogenic” sounds scientific, the truth is that the effectiveness of noncomedogenic products has not been proven in clinical trials, nor has it been tested by the FDA. This is not, however, to say that such products are without merit; in fact, there is some evidence that non comedic products can reduce acne. There is, after all, proof that blocked pores can produce acne, and therefore, a product preventing occlusion of pores, may help prevent it. However, some forms of acne may be a result of other causes, such as a high presence of bacteria on the skin, and, in these cases, noncomedogenic goods would not have much effect.

In other instances, products are labelled noncomedogenic, but, in fact can cause skin rashes an irritation.

Woman cleaning face

Chemistry of Noncomedogenic Products
Noncomedogenic cleanser usually contain benzoyl peroxide, sulfur or salicylic acid. Some have ingredients to treat acne, and others are simply formulated to not aggravate pimples and clog pores.

Benzoyl peroxyde kills bacteria which causes acne and does not produce oil on the skin. Salicylic acid does not kill bacteria, but does unclog pores without creating additional oil. It also dissolves oil in the hair follicles. Sulfur washes away dead skin cells and excess oil and is also believed to be able to break down blackheads and whiteheads.

Pros and Cons Of Noncomedogenic Cleansers
Noncomedogenic. How bad could it be, right? Anything purported not to clog pores, couldn’t be too bad, right? Well, you be the judge.

Benzoyl Peroxide
If you’ve ever used benzoyl peroxide to treat acne, you probably found it to be effective. However, you will need to use it for a few weeks before you see results, and, if you discontinue use, the acne will return. Also, while you can combat the drying effects of benzoyl peroxide on skin with moisturizer, other side effects are not so easy to deal with. Itching, rashes, burning, and swelling have all been associated with the use of benzoyl peroxide and are best handled professionally.

Woman checking skin

Salicylic Acid
Like benzoyl peroxide, salicylic acid requires continuous use to see results, as pores will clog up again when the skin is no longer receiving treatment. Although it can cause irritation and stinging, it is usually mild enough to work without causing serious side effects.

Sulfur
Sulfur has very few side effects, if any, and, although some may find the smell disagreeable, the odor is usually not detectable when mixed with other ingredients.

What do you think of noncomedogenic products? Does the term reassure you? Let us know!

Can Your Pimples Shed Light On Your Gastrointestinal Problems?

Woman checking pimple

“CNotes” started having really bad problems with his skin about 8 months ago. He noticed that his breakouts came in conjunction with hits stomach problems which lead him to believe that his nausea and indigestion may be the cause of his constant breakouts. He wonders if anyone has gone through a similar experience, and says, “There are so many treatments and so much information, I don’t know where to start.”

Well, CNotes, you are definitely not alone. A study investigation 13,000 adolescents found that those with acne were more prone to gastrointestinal problems like heartburn and constipation and that abdominal bloating was 37% more likely to be linked with acne. As for where to start, try here:

Clues that Your Acne Is Caused By Digestion
If you suspect that your digestion may be at the root of your acne problems, here are some clues to look for:

  1. You breakout after eating certain foods.
  2. There is no cyclical pattern to the timing of your breakouts.
  3. You are breaking out mostly on your forehead.
  4. You have frequent stomach aches.
  5. You tend to break out before, during, or after periods of gut problems.

Gastrointestinal Problems and Acne
Keep in mind that skin is an elimination system in your body and that acne is a result of the skin doing its job. Therefore, increased toxicity in the blood can lead to an increase in acne. Diets high in processed foods, sugar and trans fat can create imbalances in the body and acne can be a symptom of this.

drinking water

Lack of digestive juices in the upper GI can also lead to acne. Active digestion starts with the saliva, and if there are not enough digestive secretions to break down the food in the upper GI, food will travel undigested to the lower GI. Undigested fats in food store toxic waste, minerals, and vitamins. If fats aren’t completely broken down, they can get into the liver, intestines and bloodstream, causing the liver to go into overdrive. Eventually this slows down systems that feed the body and the body creates “collateral veins.”

When the liver is overtaxed, the body creates collateral veins to help the blood keep flowing. Collateral veins are extra blood vessels in the intestinal tract that allow the body to bypass the liver and, as a result, unfiltered, impure blood enters your body causing imbalances; acne is among these.

Healing Digestive Problems

  1. Drink Water: Water will help to carry nutrients through your body and flush out toxic buildup.
  2. Keep a Journal of What You Eat: Write down what you eat and how you feel for a wok, noting patterns. Analyze your entries to see if you notice more of less breakouts when you eat a certain food.
  3. Increase Digestion in Upper GI: Consuming bitter herbs can help increase digestion in the upper GI, as can consuming probiotic foods. Lemon balm is a recommended herb and fermented foods likekimchi, yogurt, pickles and sauerkraut are all probiotic.
  4. Heal the Lower GI: Taking demulcent herbs, such as marshmallow, can coat the lining of the intestines that are subject to damage associated with lower GI distress. Herbs that help the liver include burdock and milk thistle.
  5. Keep Track of Fats: Fat is a vital part of building energy in our body, so its important to eat good fats to sustain us.

Do you think your acne is related to your gastrointestinal problems? Let us know how you handle your challenges. Your comments and opinions can help!

Choosing The Right Foods For Your Skin

Let’s take a moment to give thanks for our skin. Where else would we put our lovely tattoos? Our skin protects us from the sun and keeps out nasty germs. It can be pierced to display beautiful jewelry. It acts as a water barrier. It cools us when we are hot and keeps us warm and snug when we are cold. Plus, the skin is the largest sexual organ of the body. Think about it. Skin is constantly changing. It can be lifted and pulled, darkened and lightened, damaged and healed. Since our skin does so much for us, shouldn’t we make sure we treat it as well as we possibly can?

We are what we eat and our skin is part of what we are. Los Angeles dermatologist, Jessica Wu says, “What you eat can affect your hormone balance, cause acne, and create or lessen inflammation, which is associated with aging.” When it comes to skin care, the foods you put in your body can be just as important as the facial creams you put on it. Here are some foods you can eat that your skin will thank you for.

woman using olive oil

Olive Oil
This makes sense. We all want our skin to maintain oil as we age, so shy not put some in our bellies? A 2012 study found that women who consumed more that 2 teaspoons of olive oil a day showed 31% less evidence of aging. This is because 75% of the fat in olive oil is in monosaturated fatty acids which keep you young and the antioxidants in olive oil defend against dangerous free radicals.

Tomatoes
Here’s the perfect place for that olive oil tomatoes. A tablespoon of olive oil along with 5 tablespoons of tomato paste has been proven to give 33% more protection from the sun. Lycopene found in tomatoes can raise the natural SPF levels of the skin.

Dark Chocolate
Delicious and healthy? That’s like being cute and single. Cocoa flavanols can improve circulation and hydrate skin. According to 12-week study, drinking a high flavanol cocoa every day caused less scaliness and roughness to women’s skin. To avoid weight gain while maintaining glowing skin, sticking to a 1 oz. a portion of the cocoa is recommended.

oatmeal Oatmeal
While we are singing the praises of oatmeal, let’s take a moment to point out a less desirable breakfast option, the bagel with jelly. With carbs and refined sugar, a bagel with jelly will increase production of insulin and hormones called androgens which, according to Lisa Drayer, MA, RD, author of “The Beauty Diet,” cause sebaceous glands in the skin to secrete more oil which gets trapped inside pores, causing pimples. Stick to the oatmeal and try topping it with fruit as opposed to brown sugar.

Sardines
Omega -3 fatty acids are among the best fat sources and sardines are packed with them. One serving has 1.5 grams of Omega-3. Sardines are rich in DHA which is an anti-inflammatory and helps to prevent acne, inflammation being the root cause of breakouts.

Orange Peel
Admittedly a more acquired taste, the researcher found that people who ate the peels of citrus fruits had a 33% reduced risk for squamous cell carcinoma, while juice and fruit had no effect. Peels contain limonene which has UV protective properties. Try blending them into a juice or smoothie for a less bitter taste.

Tips For Reducing Skin Inflammation

Women examining her skin

You feel it before you see it.  That familiar burning and stinging feeling. You dread looking in the mirror.  Your reflection confirms your dread.  Your skin is puffy, swollen and covered in red blotches.  This can’t be happening today.  You need to be in work in an hour for a major presentation.  The mere thought of applying any kind of make up to your tender skin  makes you cringe.  Would it be too noticeable if you showed up to work in a ski mask?  Damn that new perfume you bought!  Ok, deep breath, you can handle it.

Believe it or not, inflammation is really a good thing. It’s a sign that your body is protecting itself against bacteria, viruses, and injuries.  However, when the cause of the inflammation is gone, so too should be the inflammation.  Unfortunately, this is sometimes not the case, and chronic inflammation can lead to heart disease, Alzheimers, arthritis and even cancer.

Why Has My Skin Betrayed Me In This Way?
There are a lot of possible explanations for skin inflammation, Stress, lack of sleep, unhealthy pollution, second-hand smoke, and sun exposure are all noted causes.  The “stress hormone”  cortisol can also cause inflammation and so can saturated fats, fried foods, refined sugar, and carbohydrates.  But, no matter the culprit,  the root of inflammation is sensitive skin.

The Four Types of Sensitive Skin
  Dermatologist Leslie Bauman M.D. and director of Cosmetic Medicine and Research says there are four types of sensitive skin:

  • Acne
  • Rosacea
  • Burning and Stinging
  • Contact dermatitis (allergies and irritants)

Though each of these have different symptoms, there is one commonality:  they all cause inflammation.

The Quick Fix

Green Tea

Green tea is a natural anti-inflammatory that brings down redness and puffiness.  It can be applied to your skin in two ways:

  • Boil water and steep 4-6 tea bags for 5 minutes.  Soak a washcloth in tea and rub the cloth on your face.
  • Squeeze water out of teabags and put them directly on your face.
  • You should notice a difference after 5-10 minutes of application.

Oatmeal
Oatmeal has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant compounds which will take the redness out of your skin and soothe itchiness.  It will also fight dryness, reduce pore size, and moisturizes. Here is a good recipe for an oatmeal mask.

  • 2 tablespoons colloidal oatmeal ground into powder by coffee grinder/ food processor
  • 2 tablespoons hot water
  • 1/2 tablespoon honey

Mix ingredients and let sit for 5 minutes.  Apply to the skin as a mask, leave it on for 10 minutes and rinse it with warm water.

For The Long Term

  • Avoid Hot Water and don’t spend too much time in the shower.  It will strip skin of natural moisture. Apply toner and moisturizer immediately after you get out.
  • Avoid Soap Swap them for soap- free cleansers with nourishing ingredients.
  • Avoid fragrances and chemicals These can  be irritating to the skin.  Also, check the amount  skin products your using daily.  If it’s more than 4, consider scaling back.

Now go out there and Enjoy your lovely skin!

The Truth about Mineral Oil

Woman looking into a microscope

There’s been much debate about whether or not the colorless, odorless mineral oil is actually good for skin, and the answer seems to vary depending on who you ask. However, there are quite a few fans out there, and with good reason. For a long time, mineral oil has been used as part of many a beauty regimen and using it has numerous benefits including helping to make the skin feel softer. Here are some truths that you should know about mineral oil so you can make a choice about whether or not you feel it’s the right product for you.

Highly Refined
Mineral oil is made from petroleum, specifically, it’s a product result of distilling of petroleum. It is one main reasons why some are turned off even before using it. Even the association is enough to have them choose something else. However, mineral oils that are used in beauty products are purified and highly refined, which leads to…

Mineral Oil and Cancer
The extensive purification process that mineral oil goes through allows it to be completely safe for use in beauty products. According to the Report on Carcinogens, Thirteenth Edition on the National Toxicology Program site of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, mineral oils that are untreated and mildly treated are “known to be human carcinogens.” There are different grades of mineral oil, and while some are untreated or mildly treated, those in beauty products are, as previously stated, purified and highly refined. According to the World Health Organization International Agency for Research on Cancer on their List of Classifications, Volumes 1 – 115 page, “Mineral oils, untreated or mildly treated” are labeled as Group 1 while “Mineral oils, highly-refined” are labeled as Group 3. According to their classification system, Group 1 is described as “Carcinogenic to humans” while Group 3 is described as “Not classifiable as to its carcinogenicity to humans.”

Mineral Oil and Acne
Another one of the biggest debates regarding mineral oil is that it blocks pores and could cause acne. One of the best ways to tell about the chances of that happening is to look at its comedogenic rating. The system ranges from 0 which means that the oil won’t clog pores to a 5 which means that there’s a very high chance of the oil clogging your pores. When it comes to the comedogenic rating of mineral oil, it has a score of 0. So you really don’t have to worry about acne and breakouts while using skincare products which use mineral oil.

The Feel of Mineral Oil
Mineral oil can feel greasy (some will be put off by the feel more than others), so if you have oily skin, it may not feel particularly comfortable to use, but on other skin types, it shouldn’t feel off-putting. To see how it might feel on your skin, do a patch test instead of immediately slathering it all over your skin. It can also give you a good idea about whether the mineral oil and your skin are compatible.

There are several myths out there about mineral oil, but the truth is that many people who use it won’t experience problems, and instead, can reap the benefits of using it. If you’re thinking of using mineral oil on your skin, it is best to consult your dermatologist first. This is an especially important step if you have skin sensitivities or you’re taking medication. You want to make sure you don’t do anything that could cause your skin to get irritated, so a quick and simple conversation with your dermatologist work wonders and also let you reap the benefits of mineral oil.

Why Retinol is Everywhere

Seriously you can’t shop for skincare products without seeing the word retinol plastered on nearly every package and ingredient list. What’s so great about retinol that it is everywhere in the skincare world? Well, we’re about to tell you. Below, find our five favorite reasons why retinol really is everywhere.

Retinol formula

What is Retinol?
Retinol, also known as vitamin A, is one of the most effective cell-communicating ingredients, which means it can literally connect to almost any skin cell and tell it to behave like a healthy, younger skin cell.

Why Retinol is Everywhere

  • Retinol Rejuvenates Your Skin – As you age, your natural levels of collagen drop and your production slows considerably. Retinol helps to promote new collagen production which results in a more plump and youthful appearance. “Retinol is an antioxidant, and thus can interrupt the free-radical damage process that causes skin to look and act older. This action helps prevent wrinkling and increases collagen production.” A 2007 study published in The Archives of Dermatology indicated that participants who applied a product with .4 percent retinol concentration to one arm for 24 weeks had dramatic improvements to their skin and biopsies revealed that the arm treated with retinol had more building blocks (such as collagen) that make skin more resilient and smooth than the untreated arm.
  • Retinol Stimulates Cell Turnover – Exfoliation is essential for healthy, radiant skin and retinol is a skin care ingredient that helps you skin cells turnover to reveal healthier skin. Improved skin cell turnover results in a smoother, more even complexion and it helps other skin care products work more effectively. With proper exfoliation, products are able to fully penetrate your skin, which enables them to provide maximum benefits.
  • Retinol Controls Acne – Acne can occur at any age and it can be more difficult to clear your adult acne than it was when you were younger. Part of why adult acne may be more stubborn is that your skin and the components that keep you skin smooth and clear begin to work differently as you age. One contributing factor to acne is the accumulation of dead skin cells and other debris is trapped in your pores. Because retinol is stimulates cell turnover and exfoliates your skin, dead skin cells and debris are removed from your skin and your pores are unclogged.
  • Retinol Can Reduce Pore Size – Okay, so before you fall in love with the idea of poreless skin, that’s not possible. Your skin will always have some pores and when it comes to pore size due to genetics, retinol will not be effective. However, if you have large pores as a result of sun damage or clogging, retinol can help to reduce their size with consistent use. Your pores stretch when follicular keratin, a part of the pore lining, builds up and retinol communicates with these cells to remind them to function properly which results in improved pore functioning. Over time, as your pores work properly, it’s entirely possible to see a reduction in pore size.
    Retinol Improves Overall Skin Appearance – Retinol is a skin care ingredient superstar because it not only functions as an anti-aging and anti-acne ingredient, it generally improves the all around appearance of your skin. Retinol can also address skin issues like eczema, decrease discoloration and sun spots, reduce fine lines and re-texturize the face for a smoother, more even complexion.

Retinol is, as we mentioned, widely available in skin care products and retinol products do not require a prescription. When selecting your retinol products, look for containers that are dark colored, because all forms of vitamin A deteriorate when exposed to light. If you are just introducing retinol into your skin care routine, note that it can be irritating to your skin so it’s best to start slowly. Begin by using your retinol product once every other day and monitor how your skin handles retinol. If you don’t experience irritation, go ahead and use your retinol products daily. Once you start making retinol a part of your skin care routine, you will completely understand why retinol is everywhere.

The Benefits of Green Tea for Your Skin

Green tea

You’ve probably heard of the health benefits of green tea from aiding weight loss to improving your brain function and the amazing powers of green tea don’t stop there. Green tea is also a seriously valuable addition to your skincare routine. The antioxidants in green tea provide your skin with enormous benefits. Keep reading to find out what benefits green tea has for your skin, and how you can use it to improve your complexion.

Fights Acne
When you drink green tea, it helps flush unwanted toxins from your body and the same is true when green tea is applied topically. In addition to removing unwanted toxins, green tea helps heal existing blemishes while also soothing and smoothing out your complexion. How is green tea able to do this? Green tea contains antibacterial agents known as catechins that both help to regulate your hormones and to suppress any acne-causing bacteria. The soothing and evening out of your complexion is due to the anti-inflammatory properties that green tea has. It reduces redness, minimizes any inflammation caused by zits and helps zits to heal more quickly and without scarring.

Combats Aging
Green tea is packed with powerful antioxidant properties that help stop premature signs of aging like fine lines and wrinkles, sunspots and loose skin. Your cells die for a variety of reasons and the EGCG compounds in green tea can actually reactivate these dying cells whether they are dying due to poor diet and lifestyle, sun damage or environmental pollutants. Another powerhouse antioxidant contained in green tea is oligomeric proanthocyanidins, or OPCs, that are incredibly effective when fighting against free radical damage. Additionally, OPCs are capable of healing damaged cells and inhibiting the enzymes responsible for the breakdown of collagen and elastin, both of which are essential to the strength and suppleness of your skin.

Improves Eye Area
If you suffer from tired, puffy eyes and dark circles, you may be reaching for green tea bags soon. Green tea can ease tired looking eyes thanks to its caffeine, vitamin K and tannin content. You might already own an eye product that contains caffeine and this is because caffeine shrinks the blood vessels around your eye, reducing the appearance of puffiness and darkness. Tannins are responsible for stimulating healthy blood circulation and they also help to soothe and tighten the skin around your eyes.

Tones Skin
With the significant amount of antioxidants found in green tea, it makes an excellent skin toner or refreshing facial mist. As stated previously, these antioxidants soothe your skin, reduce redness and inflammation and heal any blemishes or other damage like cuts and scrapes. The anti-inflammatory antioxidants are perfect to soothe your skin while also tackling serious problems like collagen and elastin loss and acne-causing bacteria.

Green tea is an impressive skin care ingredient and using products that contain high amounts of green tea will result in healthy, young, radiant skin. You can also reap the benefits of green tea by making it and then allowing it to cool. Once this is done, soak a cotton ball in it for a toner, pour it into a spray bottle for a facial mist or use cooled green tea bags on your eye area. Healthy, happy skin can be yours when you incorporate green tea into your skincare routine.