Tag Archives: vitamin e

Vitamins in Skin Care Products

Woman buying beauty products

In 1933, a statement was released involving the “study of vitamins” and the “constant development of new and novel methods for their administration.”  The statement went on, “One of these is the application of ointments or creams rich in vitamin containing substances directly to the skin.” It followed that this practice would help to correct, “mild skin morbidities, large pores, lines, wrinkles, sallowness, etc.” Twenty years later, Helena Rubenstein’s released her Lanolin Vitamin Formula with vitamin A.  It would set you back $1.50 for a one month supply and $2.50 for a two month supply. We’ve come a long way since then! Well, whatever your “skin concerns” may look like, there’s probably vitamin for that today.

According to Mary Lupo, MD and professor of dermatology at Tulane University, “the body only delivers only a certain percentage of vitamins to your skin, no matter how much you ingest.” Our bodies do their best, but in order to guarantee that we’re hitting the target, we need to make sure that we help out by putting these vitamins there ourselves.  One of the best ways of doing so is by looking out for certain vitamins in your skin care products.

Vitamin E
Otherwise known as tocopheryl, vitamin E works in several ways to provide antioxidant benefits to the skin.  Although both natural and synthetic forms of the vitamin are beneficial, the natural form is more potent and longer lasting.  Vitamin E helps to protect skin from environmental pollutants and is found often in sunscreen because of its ability to defend skin against UV light.  Pair it with Vitamin C for a one-two punch against aging.

Vitamin B3
Vitamin B3 is best for reducing redness and boosting hydration. Also known as niacinamide, vitamin B3 increases productions of fatty acids and ceramides, which are both play major roles in the skin’s protective barrier. Says Leslie S. Baumann, MD and director of the University of Miami Cosmetic Medicine and Research Institute, “As that barrier is strengthened, skin is better able to keep moisture in and irritants out.”  The results of one study showed that moisturizers containing B3 tempered the redness caused by rosacea.  In addition, the wonder vitamin interferes with the transfer of pigment to cells in the skin, decreasing the appearance of dark spots.

vitamin c

Vitamin C
Also listed as ascorbic acid, Vitamin C is a superstar for diminishing  the look of dullness, wrinkles, uneven skin tone and fine lines. Vitamin C is a proven preservative of skin’s resiliency and helps to smooth and firm skin, while evening out skin tone, increasing hydration  and making it visibly more radiant. Hema Sundaram, MD, advises looking for moisturizers with this vitamin in the list of ingredients and see the benefits for yourself.

Retinol
Retinol, or Vitamin A, more commonly, is probably the gold standard of ingredients for skin, providing benefits to combat everything from bumps, rough texture, wrinkles, and fine lines  According to Doris Day, MD and assistant clinical professor of dermatology at University Langone Medical center, “There are more than 700 published studies on retinoids.  They’re tried and true ingredients.  Anyone who wants younger looking skin should use one.”

Vitamin K
If you want younger, brighter looking eyes,  you may want vitamin K. One study concluded that daily use of vitamin K in an eye cream over four months lightened under eye circles significantly, but because of the retinol content in the cream, it was unclear which vitamin was responsible. However, Dr. Berman says the retinol may ease Vitamin K’s ability to be absorbed by skin and prevent darkness.

Let us know what vitamins your skin has been taking and how they’re working for you.  We love to get your comments and suggestions.

Nutrients You Might Be Missing from Your Vegan Diet

woman with salad
No matter what your take on veganism is, you have to give vegans credit. They gave up cheese for this. That means they can’t walk into the Cheesecake Factory and order a slice of White Chocolate Mousse. They can’t walk into a Pizza Hut and order the stuffed crust. They can’t munch on cheese doodles while watching the game, they can’t get a cheeseburger at MacDonald’s and they can’t eat those cheese doodles stuffed with more cheese. So good for them, you may say. Who needs to put all that junk in their bodies? Well, while it’s safe to say most of us could live safely, and probably for a much longer time, without ever eating the aforementioned for the rest of their lives, there is some proof that a vegan diet may be lacking in certain nutrients and not just cheese. Here’s what you need to know to make sure you get what you need while maintaining the lifestyle you choose.

Vitamin B 12
Known as the energy vitamin, your body needs B 12 for blood formation, energy production, reproductive health and DNA synthesis. Signs of Vitamin B12 deficiencies include fatigue, impaired function of the brain and megaloblastic anemia. It has also been associated with neurological and psychiatric disorders like an Alzheimer’s and heart disease.
If you are a hardcore vegan, Nori Seaweed and tempeh both contain small amounts of vitamin B12. If you do not eat these foods regularly, you should take a B-12 supplement to make sure you’re getting all the energy you need.

Woman with vitamin D3
Vitamin D3
You may have heard of Vitamin D3 as the steroid hormone you get from sun exposure. However, what you may not know is that it’s also involved in the machinery of all the cells and tissues in your body and is crucial for disease prevention Although sun exposure is the best way of getting Vitamin D, researchers are now finding that some foods contain some pretty meaningful amounts of it. It is estimated that the average adult in the central United States gets about 1,500 – 2,000 IUs of Vitamin D from food; specifically meat, egg yolk and fatty fish. However, even if you do eat these foods, most of your vitamin D does come from sunlight and, if you are not a fan of the sun, without a Vitamin D supplement, deficiency is all but guaranteed. So if sun is not your thing,make sure to stock up on the D supplements.

Animal-Based Omega-3 DHA
Docosahexaenoic acid is an omega 3 fat found in animals like krill and fish necessary for heart health and brain function. In addition, pregnant women with DHA deficiencies put their children at risk for developmental problems. Although plant based omega-3 fats can be found, it takes a combination of them to get a sufficient amount of DHA. If you’re determined to get your DHA from plants, try combining hemp and flax with krill oil, an animal based omega-3 with an antioxidant 48 percent more potent than fish oil. It is also sustainable and eco- friendly.

Heme Iron
Although iron is found in plant and animal foods, heme iron is found only in meat, usually red meat. The iron found in plants is not absorbed well by the body, which can increase the risk of anemia for vegetarians and vegans. If you need to supplement with heme iron, a safe form is carbonyl iron, as opposed to the often toxic ferrous sulfate.

Sulfur
Meat and fish are the only ways to get the amino acids you need to produce protein. Without animal protein, you increase your risk of sulfur deficiency. Sulfur is vital for the activity of enzymes and proteins. If you don’t have a sufficient amount, it can affect joints, bones, metabolic processes and connective tissue. A 2012 study showed that low intake of sulfur by vegans and vegetarians can result in increased risk of heart attack and cardiovascular diseases. If you are a staunch adversary of meat, seek your sulfur in coconut and olive oil. If you are looking to supplement, Methylsufonylmethane or MSM is the organic form of sulfur, naturally found in plants.

If veganism is part of your way of life, let us know about it. Do you miss cheese? We want to hear your struggle.

Benefits of Topical Vitamin E

Vitamins

With the recent inundation of skin products on the market, some of the more natural options are sometimes overlooked. Vitamin E is a necessary part of the skin’s antioxidant defense. It is remarkably safe and can be taken in quantities as high as 3200 IU per day, more than 100 times the US RDA. Vitamin E is a necessary part of the skin’s antioxidant defenses.  It has been shown to have an oxygen sparing effect on the heart, break sown blood clots and prevent more from forming  and promote healing of skin with less scar tissues and protect against UV rays and free radical damage.

It should be mentioned that Vitamin e in its most natural form is called D-alpha with mixed natural tocopherols.  There  are synthetic versions that are cheaper and less effective so if you want the real thing, look for D-alpha tocopherol on the label.

Uses of Topical Vitamin E

On Burns
You can drip Vitamin E on burnt skin by applying oil directly  or splitting the Vitamin capsule open.  Vitamin E is capable of healing even 3rd-degree burns.  Twice daily applications are recommended and skin should be dry before applying.  The burn should heal with less scarring and inflammation.

For sunburns, you can mix some 400 IU capsules with olive oil.  Not only will your burn fade painlessly, but it will minimize peeling.  Individuals also credit Vitamin E with hemorrhoid relief.

As A Night cream
Dab a little vitamin E oil under your eyes after you remove your makeup. Your under eye skin will be super strong.  It also reduces the chance of cheek wrinkle, which is a large fold that appears when you move the cheek toward the eye. Vitamin E also  safeguards the eyes from dark circles.

As An Anti-Aging Product
The anti-aging effects of natural products are generally slow, so persistence will pay off in the use of vitamin E as an anti-aging product.  In the form of gamma tocotrienol , Vitamin E can reverse damage from UVB radiation and free radicals, causing reduction of brown spots.

Apply After A Shower
Absorbs in minutes for skin like a baby! Vitamin E oil usually contains coconut oil, making a dynamite duo for dry skin, but as an added bonus Vitamin E also helps your skin to produce its own oil.  Vitamin E regulates the function of oil releasing glands, making it a perfect moisturizer.

Heals Any Scars
Vitamin E is known for its ability to heal injured skin tissues, You can apply it on pigmentation scars,  acne scars or scars made by cuts, wounds or surgery.

Gets Rid of Dry and Dull Skin
Take the ‘gets rid of’ part literally,  not only can it reduce dryness and flakiness,  after regular application Vitamin E concentration may actually reach a point in which it will keep working after discontinuing use.

Smooths Tangle Free Hair No more ouch!  Your days of yanking and pulling are over. Add vitamin E to a regular shampoo makes hair texture silky and smooth. In addition, Vitamin E nourishes the scalp keeping it healthy and moisturized, preventing dandruff.

There is no denying that there are some great products out there, but sometimes the best solution is the simplest.   Vitamin E is  harmless and  easily accessible at pharmacies.

Vitamin E Oil Massage

Woman getting an oil massage

Vitamin E has many health benefits. Your doctor may recommend it for boosting your immune system, preventing stroke induced brain damage, and even curing certain cancers. But vitamin E can also do wonders for your nails and skin. Read on to learn about how vitamin E oil can be beneficial to your nails, hands and feet.

Vitamin E can be taken orally or in liquid form. “Oral vitamin E increases blood circulation, thus improving the amount of blood flowing through the nail-growth structures,” says health writer Kathy Mayse. Nails are created from dead keratin cells which accumulate as a result of cell formation and division in the nail growth structure.  This would not be possible without adequate blood supply. An increase in the blood supply may lead to faster, stronger, healthier growth.

Vitamin E oil can also be applied directly to nails. Bad habits, natural elements, and the manicure process can make nails dry and brittle and ultimately damages cuticles. When cuticles dry out, they lose natural fats which help keep them soft. Vitamin E can be instrumental in keeping them moisturized and healthy.

Vitamin E oil can be extracted directly from vitamin E capsules or bought in oil form. Deblina Biswas at The Fit Indian recommends coating all nails with the oil and massaging gently for five minutes before going to bed for best results. Doing this on a daily basis can result in noticeable changes in nail appearance and condition.

Vitamin E oil can also be used to soften rough patches of skin on your body, and what more common place to find rough patches than the bottom of your feet? The website ‘Dan Likes This’ recommends an effective process involving vitamin E oil to keep your feet from getting dry and rough:

  • Soak feet in Epsom salt and water for 30 minutes
  • Remove loose, dry skin by scrubbing with a toothbrush
  • Rub vitamin E oil on affected areas or all over feet
  • Put socks on to keep oil on your feet
  • Repeat process for at least 5 days

Dan stresses the importance of using a quality Vitamin E oil, and not a cream.

Like your feet, hands can get excessively dry as well and vitamin E oil can help. People looking to relieve problems with dry skin can treat hands by massaging in vitamin E oil. For an effective treatment, apply vitamin E on hands before bedtime, cover with gloves and leave on overnight. Some believe that vitamin E can help reduce the appearance of scars which commonly appear on hands but research as to whether this is true is inconclusive.

So, we see how massaging Vitamin E into skin helps to soften and moisturize hands and also help blood circulation. For the ultimate in healing, softening and soothing, ask your massage therapist to add Vitamin E into the massage oils he or she is using for your next session. I can’t think of anything more wonderful.

Best Ingredients for More Youthful Skin

The ingredients you put onto your skin have a significant and direct impact on your appearance. If you’ve been looking in the mirror and seeing skin that appears dull, rough, dry or lackluster, it’s time to add some serious anti-aging ingredients into your skin care routine. However, there are so many products with even more ingredients and it can be a little daunting to know what ingredients really are the best when it comes to achieving more youthful looking skin. Read below to find out the top five best ingredients for more youthful skin and why they are the best.

Woman holding a vitamin capsule

Retinol
Retinol is the purest form of vitamin A and it is one of the most beneficial ingredients to keep your skin looking young. Retinol is a cell-communicating ingredient that essentially tells your skin cells to look and act younger. It stimulates collagen production, activates cellular metabolism for more rapid cell turnover, fades the appearance of sun or age spots and reduces fine lines. By communicating with your cells to perform all of these tasks, retinol gives your face a firmer, younger and more even appearance.

Green tea

Antioxidants
Free radical damage is one of the most significant causes of aging and unfortunately, there are types of free radical exposure that you can’t avoid such as the sun, oxygen or pollution. What you can do is to look for skin care products that contain an array of antioxidants to fight free radical damage. Look for ingredients like vitamin C, green tea extract and vitamin E. Vitamin C is a favorite among dermatologists because this antioxidant boosts your skin’s natural defenses against sun damage and also encourages collagen production.

Hyaluronic acid.

Hyaluronic Acid
Hydrated skin is an important part of a youthful appearance, and hyaluronic acid is one of the greatest skin care ingredients for adding moisture to your skin. Hyaluronic acid is a humectant, which means that it is able to draw moisture from the air and hold that moisture into your skin, and hyaluronic acid is so powerful that it can hold up to 1,000 times its weight in water. Hyaluronic acid makes your fine lines and wrinkles become significantly less noticeable because as it holds water, it plumps the appearance of your skin.

Grapes in a vineyard

Resveratrol
Resveratrol is found in the skins of grapes, blueberries, cranberries and Goji berries and also in wine and some nuts. High-quality skin care products also harness the power of resveratrol to fight signs of aging. Resveratrol features a number of potent antioxidant properties and helps keep your skin looking young. It also helps protect against further environmental damage by fighting off free radicals.

Milk

Alpha-Hydroxy Acids (AHAs)
Exfoliation is a crucial step in maintaining youthful-looking skin and alpha-hydroxy acids are incredible for this purpose. Alpha-hydroxy acids are generally derived from fruit or milk sugars. Some common alpha-hydroxy acids are lactic acid and glycolic acid. These acids exfoliate your skin by gently dissolving the bonds that hold dead skin cells together. This allows for the dead skin cells to be sloughed away from the skin to reveal smoother, more even skin and can also help reduce the appearance of pores.

Not all skin care ingredients are created equal. Some, like the five above, are seriously powerful anti-aging ingredients that provide your skin with a more luminous and youthful appearance. When selecting skin care products, always check the ingredient list to see how high on the list these anti-aging superstars are. The closer to the beginning of the list, the higher the concentration of each ingredient in the product. Choosing well-formulate, quality skin care products that contain these five best ingredients for more youthful skin will keep your face looking young and radiant.

Ingredients to Look for if you Have Sensitive Skin

If you suffer from sensitive skin, you know how difficult it can be to find products with ingredients that will keep your skin healthy, clean and youthful without being irritating. You may know what ingredients you need to avoid if you have sensitive skin, such as alcohol, fragrance or abrasive ingredients, but you might not know where to start looking when it comes to ingredients your skin will love. Below, find our five favorite ingredients to look for if you have sensitive skin.

Aloe Vera

Aloe Vera
Aloe vera is one of the most soothing skincare ingredients available. Aloe vera is a clear gel that is secreted from cactus plants and instantly calms irritated skin. One of the major uses for aloe vera has been after sun care and that is because it is so soothing. Aloe vera reduces redness on sensitive skin, hydrates the skin and calms skin down. Aloe vera gel is widely available and many grocery and health food stores sell aloe stems if you want to go straight to the source. Simply cut the stem and use the 100% pure aloe vera gel that the plant secretes.

Glycolic Acid
Exfoliation is still important to sensitive skin because it removes dry, dead skin cells and other debris and helps to promote healthy cell turnover. Alpha-hydroxy acids are great exfoliants if you have sensitive skin because they are not harsh or abrasive and exfoliate more by dissolving dead skin than scrubbing it off. The reason that glycolic acid is particularly helpful for sensitive skin is that it has a small molecular structure thus it is able to absorb more deeply into your skin.

vitamin E.

Vitamin E
Antioxidants are always great for your skin, and the antioxidant vitamin E is particularly beneficial to you if you have sensitive skin. Like other antioxidants, vitamin E protects your skin from oxidative damage due to harmful free radicals. Vitamin E is an amazing anti-aging ingredient for sensitive skin because it fights free radicals, helping to prevent wrinkles, while remaining super gentle to your skin. This skincare ingredient also reduces inflammation in the skin and helps to regulate the moisture levels in your skin so that you stay well hydrated.

Peptides
Proteins are necessary for your skin to maintain its health and youth and peptides are a great anti-aging ingredient for sensitive skin. Peptides are chains of amino acids that are portions of larger protein molecules. Peptides have the ability to communicate with your skin cells, directing them to perform functions necessary for youthful, healthy skin. One of the ways peptides work is by directing cells to produce more collagen or to thicken the support structure of your skin, which is definitely helpful to sensitive skin.

Chamomile

Chamomile
Chamomile is an amazing ingredient for sensitive skin because it has been shown that chamomile flavonoids and essential oils are able to penetrate the deeper layers of your skin. A natural anti-inflammatory and antiseptic, chamomile helps to prevent skin issues like acne while being super gentle to your skin. In addition to having the ability to keep skin clean, chamomile also helps promote healing of wounds and prevents infection.

Finding the right products for you may require a bit of trial and error but when you know where to start, you can significantly shorten the journey. Using the ingredients above will help you to achieve healthy, radiant and calm skin while also protecting your skin from harm and premature aging.

Top Family Care Ingredients

With the end of summer approaching, it’s time to start thinking about the back to school basics. You have to spend time browsing through the stores for all of the school supplies, new clothes because your kids have outgrown last year’s, and of course, the lunch bags. Amidst all of the planning and preparation that goes into back-to-school time, it becomes all too easy to make the health of your family a priority. However, making sure your entire family is receiving the necessary vitamins and minerals they need. Back-to-school also means back to classrooms full of runny little noses, not enough hand washing and exposure to all kinds of germs. Vine Vera compiled a list of the ingredients that make for a healthy, happy family.

Calcium rich foods

Calcium
Every member of your family requires calcium. Your children need calcium to help grow strong, healthy bones and adults in the household need calcium to maintain strong bones. As you age your stores of calcium decrease significantly, so it is important to continue replenishing your body’s store of calcium. For children, the more calcium they get at younger ages increases the amount stored for when they eventually age and begin to lose calcium. You can get calcium from dietary sources like dairy products, such as milk, cheese and yogurt, salmon and leafy, dark greens like kale.

Vitamin C rich foods

Vitamin C
You probably are already aware that you need vitamin C to support healthy immune function, and you know you can get it from oranges. However, vitamin C does far more than improve immune system functioning. Vitamin C also helps strengthen blood vessels, providing antioxidant benefits such as fighting free radicals, increasing skin elasticity (great for the adults in the house) and helping your body absorb iron. Of course you can grab some oranges to get vitamin C, but you can also include items such as kiwis, goji berries, grapefruits, strawberries and red and green peppers.

Vitamin B rich foods

B Vitamins
B vitamins are an essential ingredient for all members of your family. These vitamins are largely responsible for energy production, and you’re going to need it as the school year starts. B vitamins also have some of the same benefits of vitamin C: they improve immune function and help with iron absorption. You can get your B vitamins in whole unprocessed foods like whole grains, lentils, potatoes, chili peppers and bananas.

Bowl of fresh spinach.

Iron
Iron is an important ingredient for your whole family. It naturally builds muscle and maintains healthy blood. You can add iron to your family’s diet by eating organ meats such as liver, clams and oysters. If your family, or a member of your family, is vegetarian there are still good sources of iron. Vegetables like soybeans, beans, spinach, pumpkin seeds and lentils all have significant levels of iron.

Sunflower seeds and sunflower oil.

Vitamin E
Vitamin E helps your immune system as well as improving your blood circulation. It is also an antioxidant that helps your body fight free radical damage. One of the greatest, and tastiest, sources of vitamin E is almonds. You can also add vitamin E to your family’s diet through tomatoes, sunflower seeds and sunflower and safflower oils.

Keeping your family healthy does not have to become your full time job. Incorporating a wide variety of fresh fruits and vegetables helps ensure your family are getting all the ingredients they require for their health.

Vacation Beauty Preparation

You want to look your absolute best on your vacation, but carting around your entire skin care and beauty product collection is impractical and may even be impossible. To minimize the amount of products you need to take, you can prep your skin before you travel using some of the following ingredients.

Woman applying moisturizer.

Moisturizers
Moisturizers are especially important if you are traveling by airplane because the air in planes is so dry it literally sucks all the moisture from your skin. Prior to leaving, look for moisturizers with extremely hydrating ingredients. One of the most beneficial ingredients for hydrating your skin is hyaluronic acid. Hyaluronic acid not only adds moisture, but it increases your skin’s ability to retain moisture which helps combat the dryness of plane cabin air. Additionally, you may want to look for vitamin E, which helps add moisture to your skin. Aloe, while not necessarily the most hydrating ingredient, does help soothe upset and uncomfortable skin, so it can be beneficial to invest in a product containing aloe before you travel.

Woman getting an exfoliating session in a spa

Exfoliants
Part of what keeps your skin looking it’s best is regular exfoliation. If you exfoliate regularly, you remove dead skin cells and help unclog your pores. You also stimulate cell turnover revealing newer, healthier skin cells. It isn’t just your face you want to exfoliate, your entire body can benefit from consistent exfoliation. Products with ingredients such as glycolic acid or salicylic acid help gently exfoliate your skin and can be used daily if desired. Scrubs, such as sugar or salt scrubs, should be used no more than 2-3 times each week and are most beneficial for your body. Exfoliate prior to leaving for vacation to get glowing skin before you leave.

Woman applying sunscreen in a beach.

Sun Protection
Whether you prefer a chemical or a mineral sunscreen, the fact is you need to be using sun protection. You should be using a sunscreen every single day (yes, even in the winter), but it becomes especially important in the summer months when there is increased sunshine and decreased skin coverage. While sun protection is an ingredient to look for in your moisturizers or body lotions, this is something that you need to use before and during travel. Don’t forget to protect your lips using a lip balm or conditioner that contains an SPF of at least 15.

While the above are beauty ingredients you want to look for in products prior to your vacation, there are some ingredients you should steer clear of before heading to your destination. Avoid any ingredients that increase your sensitivity to the sun, particularly if you are headed someplace sunny. The exception here is if you require a medication that may increase sensitivity to the sun in which case you should continue taking the medication as directed and increase your sunscreen application. Also steer clear of products that contain alcohol. Some people think alcohol is beneficial to the skin, especially in a toner. However, while alcohol may cut through the oil in skin, it dehydrates the skin in the process which leads your skin to produce more oil in an attempt to avoid dehydration.

Pack travel size beauty staples to decrease the amount of stuff you have to lug around. Avoid using brand new products that you have never tested on your skin before to ensure that you don’t have an adverse reaction during your vacation. Always apply sunscreen, drink plenty of water and of course, enjoy your vacation. Bon voyage!

Top Ingredients for Your Skin Type

The major skin types that people have include normal, dry, oily and combination. Normal skin is the most rare while oily can be the most difficult to remedy through topically applied products. Using the proper skin care ingredients for your skin type helps give you the clear, beautiful skin you want.

Vine-Vera-Top-Ingredients-for-Your-Skin-Type-Normal-Skin

Normal
Normal skin is the exception rather than the rule, and many people who have normal skin deal with normal skin plus a concern or two. You most likely have normal skin if your skin is not oily or dry and if you do get small spots of oily or dry skin they are quick and easy to remedy. Normal skin has a fairly even skin tone with no major brown or red spots and your pores are neither invisible nor enlarged.

The best way to care for normal skin is to avoid products labeled for other skin types: oily skin care products will be too drying while dry skin care products will have too much moisture. Look for products with gentle, but effective ingredients. Antioxidants are important ingredients for all skin types, and normal skin benefits from vitamins A, C and E. Though normal skin is not oily, you still need to exfoliate normal skin regularly to remove any dead skin cells or other debris that may accumulate. The best exfoliant for normal skin is an alpha hydroxy acid, which is a gentle chemical exfoliant. An AHA exfoliant also reduces the appearance of wrinkles and increases collagen production.

Cosmetic cream and strawberries on a wooden table.

Dry
The common perception is that dry skin suffers from a lack of moisture, but this is not entirely true. Rather, dry skin has lost its ability to maintain normal levels of moisture as the skin’s barrier response has been weakened. To best take care of dry skin, it is important to look for ingredients that help the skin to retain a healthy water balance. Rid your skin care routine of anything that contains a rough scrub, use your fingers rather than a harsh cleansing brush and drying ingredients such as alcohol.

Dry skin requires some extra attention and delicate care. Many times those with dry skin can skip cleansing altogether as soaps, particularly in bar form, can be incredibly drying. Splash some warm water over your face and cleanse using a gentle AHA exfoliant. Look for moisturizers packed with antioxidants such as vitamin E and consider the use of intensive serums or plant oils. Plant oils such as jojoba and olive oils can be extremely helpful to dry skin.

Woman cleansing her face.

Oily
Oily skin is perhaps the hardest type of skin to deal with because it is caused by hormones which are genetically determined. The hormones responsible for oil production are androgens and while they are considered the “male hormone,” they are present in both males and females. You have oily skin if your face becomes shiny about two hours after cleansing and continues to become increasingly “greasy” throughout the day. Additionally, people with oily skin often have enlarged pores due to the increase in oil production.

While it may seem like a good idea to dry out oily skin, this can make your skin produce even more oil. Rather than using harsh ingredients like alcohol, look for gentle cleansers with ingredients such as salicylic acid. This helps combat oil, and any resulting acne, without being too drying on the skin. Use of a toner after cleansing can help oily skin and looking for one with antioxidants such as vitamin C (ascorbic acid) can provide great benefits. Be sure to exfoliate and again salicylic acid, or BHA exfoliant, is great for clearing away dead skin cells and unclogging pores.

Witch Hazel

Combination
Combination skin is difficult for people to deal with and recognize. Combination skin occurs when you face two or more skin types at one time. Often, some part of the skin is dry and flaky while other parts of the skin are oily. Generally, this manifests as an oily T-zone, where the forehead, nose and chin are oilier than the rest of the face.

Use a gentle cleanser and avoid bar soaps for combination skin. Again, look for a toner but be sure that it does not include any irritating ingredients such as citrus oils, alcohols or witch hazel. Salicylic acid is a great ingredient and can be used as a regular exfoliant to keep the T-zone clean and clear. If your skin is particularly dry, then you may want to skip the BHA (salicylic acid) toner and switch to an AHA exfoliant. Use heavy moisturizers or anti-acne medications as spot treatments rather than applying to the entire face.

Treating your unique skin type with the ingredients that it needs ensures you have the healthiest skin possible. Remember to use sunscreen daily no matter what type of skin you have as it provides necessary protection against harmful UV rays. A regular routine of cleansing, exfoliating and moisturizing helps all skin types stay looking youthful and radiant.

Antioxidants to Boost Immunity – Vine Vera Reviews

Antioxidants are a highly popular topic when it comes to health and beauty and with good reason. These food and skin care ingredients really do help in a large variety of ways from protecting your immune health to helping you look younger. There are several ways to use antioxidants in order to boost your immunity. The most common way for people to get antioxidants to improve immune functioning is through their diet. A healthy, well-balanced diet often provides all the antioxidants you need for proper immune functioning. However, there are supplements designed to pack an extra punch with antioxidants. Following, we’ve compiled a brief list of the most recognized antioxidants to look for when it comes to boosting your immunity.

Broccoli on a wooden board.

Vitamin C
Vitamin C as an antioxidant fights free radicals that attack your body daily. According to a paper published on the National Center for Biotechnology Information, vitamin C deficiencies lead to reduced resistance against pathogens, while an increase in supply can enhance certain immune system parameters. The paper further states “With regard to the common cold different studies including meta-analyses underline that the prophylactic intake of vitamin C may slightly reduce the duration of the illness in healthy persons…”

Foods that are high in vitamin C include many citrus fruits such as grapefruits, oranges and kiwis. Other foods rich in the antioxidant vitamin C include:

  • Kale
  • Broccoli
  • Cauliflower
  • Sweet Potatoes
  • Tomatoes
  • Red, yellow or green peppers

Sliced papaya on a plate.

Vitamin E
Another important antioxidant to help boost your immune system is vitamin E. Vitamin E is essential to immune functioning because it signals the germ/bacteria/virus killer cells to target foreign or harmful substances and destroy these cells. Additionally, vitamin E stimulates the production of B cells which create antibodies to fight diseases. Foods that are high in vitamin E include:

  • Broccoli
  • Leafy greens such as chard and spinach
  • Nuts
  • Red peppers
  • Sunflower seeds
  • Papaya

Lobster dish with seafood dressings.

Selenium
Selenium is an important antioxidant that increases natural killer cells and that enhances the results of vitamin E in the body. In addition, selenium is a powerful antioxidant in the fight against cancer because it mobilizes cancer-fighting cells and reduces damage due to chemical carcinogens and radiation. Selenium also boosts your immune response to infections and helps your body form blood clots. To get more selenium in your diet consider these foods:

  • Eggs
  • Tuna
  • Lobster
  • Shrimp
  • Nuts
  • Chicken
  • Cheese
  • Whole grains

Closeup of a ripe peach.

Vitamin A
Carotenoids are also an important immune-boosting antioxidant. When your body requires vitamin A it converts beta-carotene into vitamin A, but otherwise allows carotenoids to be free to fight free radicals. Beta-carotene is  important to your immune system because it interferes with the oxidation of fat and cholesterol in your blood stream. When you want to increase your intake of beta-carotene, look for brightly colored foods such as:

  • Carrots
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Pumpkin
  • Squash
  • Peaches
  • Apricots
  • Cantaloupe

Varying your diet helps provide your body with the nutrients it needs and including antioxidants helps to boost your immune system. Before beginning any new diet or taking supplements, it is always a good idea to consult with your doctor first.