Tag Archives: Benzoyl Peroxide

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!

Battling Adult Acne

  Women examining acne on her face.

Most of us talk about how we would like to turn back the clock.  Sure, we would all like to look a bit  younger, but there are definitely some things about youth that we are happy to see the back of that denim jacket with the heavy metal patches on it that you wore until it rotted, the self-administered buzz cut, the experiments with green hair dye, and acne.  Yes, if there is anything to be glad about when it comes to aging, it would have to be the end of acne.  But, what if you find yourself having graduated to  adulthood when……THEY’RE BACK! Just when you thought you zapped, squeezed and hid your last pimple, white or black head, they’re back and badder than ever.

Why?

Hormones
Teens are not the only ones whose hormones are aflutter.  According to dermatologist Julia Tzu, MD of Wall Street Dermatology says,”Fluctuation in hormones, such as before one’s menstrual cycle, is the main cause.” Hormonal acne is identifiable by a painful outbreak around the chin neck and back and may occur before your menstrual cycle. High-stress levels can also contribute to hormonal imbalance.  When the stress hormone, cortisol, is released by the body, it is often accompanied by testosterone, a male hormone which leads to the production of more oil, ultimately resulting in more outbreaks.

Using the Wrong Products
If you are prone to breakouts, you should be using products that will not clog your pores. DR. Neal Schultz, of Beauty RX Skincare, suggest looking  for  the words “oil-free”, “non-comedogenic” or “water -based” on the label.

Overcleansing
 Dr.  Rebecca Kazin, MD of the John Hopkins Department of Dermatology says cleansing more than twice a day is too much and can just dry out skin “which can cause it to produce more oil to overcompensate.  Grainy and gritty cleansers  that rub your skin can similarly promote acne.    Try switching to a gentle detoxifying gel cleanser and two is the magic number.

Food
Many of us have heard that there is a direct relationship between chocolate, greasy food and acne, but. before you put down that Hershey’s bar, there is no statistic proof of any of this.  However, you would be well advised to avoid iodine, found in shellfish and greens like kelp and spinach.  Sugary food can also be a culprit.  By raising your insulin level, sugary foods can boost oil- triggering hormones, like testosterone.

Treatment Ingredients

Salicylic Acid
Also known as beta hydroxy acid, salicylic acid exfoliates gently to unclog pores.  It is go-to in anti-acne products and can be found in most OTC cleansers and spot treatments and is mild enough to use on your whole face.

Benzoyl Peroxide
This stuff kills acne bacteria whole exfoliating the pores but stick to spot treatment for this one.  It has been known to make skin irritated and should not be used all over the face.

Glycolic Acid
If you are facing the acne meets wrinkles stages, this may be just the thing. It removes dead skin cells on the surface and stimulates the collagen and  hyaluronic acid, improving skin’s texture on the whole.

Retinol
Another godsend for the acne meets wrinkles crowd.  It is one of the most effective treatments for acne and also has collagen building properties, but , be aware, can be too harsh for those with sensitive skin so try testing it on  a small spot on your skin before you commit to it.

Exfoliate
Probably the best thing you can do to fight acne is exfoliated and the best way to so it is with glycol acid.  A glycol cleanser is helpful, but exfoliating pads and serums that really soak your skin are more effective.

Keep Spot Treatment on Hand
As soon as you feel that zit waiting to burst our, zap it with some benzoyl peroxide to start killing bacteria immediately.  Try to look for a gentle formula with soothing ingredients  for adult skin.

In closing, while these treatments are all effective, keep in mind that hormones are some pretty powerful players.  If topical treatment isn’t enough, talk to your doctor.  He may have the best advice on the best course of action.

Best Ingredients to Deep Clean 2015 Away

Even the best of us can slip up and commit some serious skin sins and now is the time to get rid of those 2015 facial care mistakes, mishaps or neglect. If you haven’t already, begin a skin care routine that consists of a cleanser, toner (if necessary), sunscreen and moisturizer because this will go a long way in keeping your skin healthy. However, if you’ve got a little deep cleaning to do, the following skin care ingredients work wonders at really drawing out and ridding your skin of impurities, toxins, dead skin cells and other debris.

Salicylic Acid

Salicylic Acid
You may be familiar with salicylic acid because it is frequently used as a treatment for acne, but you can still benefit from this deep cleaning ingredient if you have a clear complexion. Salicylic acid exfoliates your skin by gently removing excess skin. When you topically apply salicylic acid, your uppermost layer of skin swells, then softens and finally peels and removes dead skin cells. Alpha-hydroxy acids work in a similar way, but salicylic (or beta-hydroxy acid) is able to penetrate your pores thus unclogging them.

Charcoal.

Charcoal
Charcoal may be one of the last things you would associate with skin care, but activated charcoal is becoming more and more popular as a deep cleansing ingredient. Activated charcoal has the ability to draw bacteria, poisons, dirt, chemicals and other micro-particles from the pores to the surface of the skin. Charcoal masks have been used for a long time to deep clean the skin because it is so effective at drawing out impurities. Activated charcoal can absorb thousands of times its mass in impurities and harmful substances. When you need a super deep clean, try an activated charcoal mask or use an activated charcoal cleanser a few times each week.

Glycolic Acid
Glycolic acid is part of a group of acids known as alpha-hydroxy acids which are made from cane sugar. When it comes to deep cleaning pores, glycolic acid has the smallest molecules among alpha-hydroxy acids so it is easy to deeply penetrate the skin and treat blackheads, acne, oiliness, dull skin and fine lines. Glycolic acid reacts with the surface layer of your skin and breaks down the skin by dissolving sebum and other substances that work to hold the skin together. This acid is used frequently to treat acne, minimize pore size, reduce fine lines and wrinkles and increase cell turnover to reveal younger skin. Glycolic acid is suitable for long-term use and the longer you use it, the better the results will be.

Benzoyl Peroxide

Benzoyl Peroxide
Benzoyl peroxide is another skin care ingredient used in the treatment of acne because it is such an effective cleansing agent. Your pores become clogged in part due to excess oil production that becomes trapped which prevents dead skin cells from exfoliating and sloughing away from the skin and pores in a normal manner. Benzoyl peroxide is able to significantly decrease oil production, allowing your pores to unclog and clear.

These ingredients truly are remarkable when you need a deep clean, but it is important to keep in mind that some concentrations of these ingredients may irritate your skin initially. For instance, your skin will need time to acclimate to glycolic acid, but once it does the deep cleaning results will be impressive. Deep cleaning ingredients are useful can really take your regular cleansing routine to the next level and provide you with clearer, healthier skin.

Benzoyl Peroxide vs Salicylic Acid

You can spot conceal the occasional small blemish, but what happens when your face is effected by full-blown acne? Many have struggled with acne at some point in their lives and the common misconception is that acne is something you will grow out of. Acne can affect anyone at any age for a large variety of reasons. Some face hormonal acne while others may have painful cystic acne. If you are taking the fight against acne into your own hands, you probably already know the two major over-the-counter medications used in acne treatment:  benzoyl peroxide and salicylic acid. However, what you may not know is which medication is the correct one for your face. Vine Vera Skincare did some digging to discover how each of these acne medications work and how to tell which one is right for your skin.

Benzoyl Peroxide chemical formula

Benzoyl Peroxide
Benzoyl peroxide is an antibacterial and a keratolytic, meaning that it dissolves keratin. Acne can be caused by a bacteria, P. acnes bacteria, which can not survive in environments that are oxygen rich. When benzoyl peroxide makes contact with your skin, it transforms into oxygen and benzoic acid. The oxygen attacks and destroys bacteria causing acne while benzoic acid makes skin dry and peel. As the skin becomes dry and peels, the skin is exfoliated and the plugs of dead skin cells are removed from your pores. Benzoyl peroxide can be incredibly powerful, which may irritate sensitive skin and cause redness, dryness or skin flaking.

Benzoyl peroxide is sold in a variety of concentrations, the highest being 10%. However, studies have shown that the 2.5% concentration of benzoyl peroxide is just as effective as a 10% benzoyl peroxide treatment and the 2.5% concentration will be less harsh on the skin than a higher level of benzoyl peroxide. Generally, benzoyl peroxide is most beneficial for people struggling with whiteheads. Benzoyl peroxide should be avoided by those with extremely sensitive or already dry skin.

Salicylic acid chemical formula.

Salicylic Acid
Salicylic acid is a beta hydroxy acid (BHA) produced from the bark of willow trees. Unlike benzoyl peroxide, salicylic acid does not kill any bacteria. On the skin, salicylic acid corrects any abnormal shedding of skin cells and penetrates deeply to unclog pores and exfoliate the skin. Salicylic acid is also an anti-inflammatory, meaning that it can be good for reducing redness. Salicylic acid helps remove debris from pores and often provides less irritation than benzoyl peroxide.

Concentrations ranging from .5% to 2% are the most commonly used in salicylic acid acne products. Often, salicylic acids is most effective for those who have issues with blackheads and spots of inflammation. Salicylic acid is generally used by those with mild to moderate acne, oily or red skin and tends to cause much less irritation or dryness than benzoyl peroxide

Both benzoyl peroxide and salicylic acid are both effective acne treatments, though each works in its own unique way. These acne fighters are available in a large assortment of skincare products from spot care creams or gels to cleansers and moisturizers. It is important to remember that both benzoyl peroxide and salicylic acid must be used continually, even after acne has cleared up. Discontinuing the use of these products will result in the return of acne. If you are still on the fence about whether benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid is best for you, or if you suffer from severe acne, it’s a good idea to head to your doctor or dermatologist to find out which medication will be most beneficial to your problem.