Homemade Face Masks with Avocado

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We all know by now nutrition plays a very important role in beauty; when you’re healthy your beauty radiates from inside out! I’m here to point out one spectacular natural fruit that you can eat and apply on your face as a nourishing face mask. This fruit is indeed touted as the best beauty food ever. I’ve just switched to it and just after one application on my skin, my skin looks so much healthier. It’s wonderful!! The fruit I’m talking about is none other than the AVOCADO.

Our skin loses its luster after being exposed to sunlight, pollution, stress and of course everyday wear and tear and aging. You will notice your skin has lost its radiance and glow that you once had. This is quite inevitable especially as we grow older. However all is not lost as you can restore the health of your skin and nourish it to its beautiful condition again. One of the ways is to eat the right face foods to help create a beautiful skin inside and outside.

Here’s my tip for splendid skin from your face right down to your body – Avocado Honey Facial Mask. This mask will leave your skin supple and smooth with a healthy glow. It’s easy to prepare and it’s almost good enough to eat. Try it out and be amazed at this wonder beauty fruit

Ingredients: Half an avocado, 2 tbs of honey, 2 tbs of plain yoghurt

Directions: Mix all the ingredients into a thick paste. Then pat on face and massage it on for half a minute. Leave on mask for maximum results for at least 20 mins and rinse off with warm water. Moisturize after to seal in moisture.

For the remainder of the avocado mask, you can use it as a body moisturizer. Use the remaining paste from your facial and rub it all over your legs and hands. Massage in the paste and let it set for 20 mins then rinse off with warm water. Moisturize with a body lotion after that for best results.

So what do you do with the other half of the avocado? You should just eat it to further boost your omega 3 intake. To make an avocado appetizer, just squeeze some lemon juice onto your avocado and eat it all up. It helps to retain moisture in your body, further boosting its moisturizing properties. Avocadoes are full of essential oils and Vitamin B Complex.

It’s undeniably the best food for your skin and health. Indulge in your avocado for beautiful and healthy skin

For beauty tips and secrets: http://www.beauty-tyrant.blogspot.com

Spreading the Flu, Colds and Germs

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It’s all in your hands.

Do you know that approximately one out of three people do not wash their hands after using the restroom? (US Center for Disease Control, 2005) And, do you know that spreading germs is as easy as touching a door knob, shopping cart or an elevator button that has been infected by someone who hasn’t washed their hands? The fact is; your hands can easily pick-up bacteria and viruses that cause common and some uncommon medical conditions.

According to Health experts, 10-25% of us will get the flu this year, and 500-1500 will die from the flu or flu complications. With the flu season upon us and the newspapers full of stories of pandemics, more and more attention is being put on the simple act of washing your hands.

Washing your hands is one of the most important things you can do to stop the spread of germs. Recently, the World Health Organization set out a draft guideline for hand washing for healthcare professionals; “the WHO Guidelines on Hand Hygiene in Health Care”, as infections like SARS, avian flu and others can be spread by the touch of an unsanitized hand.

How to wash your hands properly

Washing your hands may be a simple task for all of us, but did you know there is a correct way to do it? Here are the instructions:

  • Wash your hands in warm water for at least 15 seconds – most people don’t wash long enough
  • Use soap (any kind)
  • It is important to rub your hands vigorously together, as it is the friction between your hands that helps eliminate the germs
  • Pay attention to cleaning between your fingers and under your finger nails
  • Use a clean, dry towel and hang the towel up properly to dry
  • If you are in a public restroom, use a paper towel to turn off the taps and open the door

Antibacterial soap

These products were introduced in the 1960′ s and have been used by many people since. For persons in occupations, which demand extra precautions, these products have been helpful. However, these products are very drying to the skin, and they can often contribute to hand and body eczema.

What to do when there’s no water?

In our busy lives we often have barely enough time to get everything done. So how do you protect yourself when you can’t wash your hands? There are many new products on the market from hand wipes to alcohol based hand sanitizers which seem to be popping up everywhere. You should know that these products, although they help, do not kill all types of germs, nor do they prevent you from picking up something after you’ve sanitized. Some people also have reactions to the drying sensation of the alcohol in hand sanitizers.

But, Is Hand Washing Enough?

You wash your hands regularly, are careful what you touch in public; so are you safe from catching and spreading germs? The answer is no. Although washing your hands in the #1 defense in getting rid of the germs on your hands, it doesn’t prevent you from picking up another germ 10 minutes later when you hold the hand rail on the escalator. There is also a limit to how many times you or a healthcare worker or an employee can (and will) stop and wash or sanitize their hands in a day.

Remember, the flu and cold viruses are here until at least April, so protect yourself and your family by washing your hands often and properly.

By SkinCareGuide.ca

Shaving 101

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Your legs must be wet for at least two to three minutes before applying your cleanser or scrub. That way the hair is soft and pliable, easier to cut. Don’t use soap, it just dries out your legs and makes for a poor shave.

Make sure you have the right tool. There are various styles of shavers, but not all legs or hair growth are the same. Triple blades work well, but no matter the blade type you use, change it frequently – but be careful with sharp edges – if not done carefully, shaving can irritate the skin, the hair follicle, and the oil gland, which causes a rash. Ingrown hairs also pose a chance of infection. See a dermatologist for the right solution.

Choose a shaving cream or gel that contains emollients for a hydrating effect, and one that is fragrance free to avoid irritation to your skin. So steer away from products that contain irritants including alcohol, menthol and peppermint. Find yourself out of shaving cream? Hair conditioner or body cleanser works just fine.

Apply even pressure and shave against the growth of hair. Follow up with a moisturizer to keep your skin moist and supple. (Read about Skin Moisturizers), but avoid creams with AHAs because the glycolic acid can irritate freshly-shaven skin.

Are there shaving alternatives?

Indeed there are. While temporary hair removal can be done by shaving, waxing or by epilation (electrolysis and thermolysis) another method is removing hair with a laser.

What is laser hair removal?

Light energy produced by a laser is targeted at the pigment in hair. This causes destruction of hair follicles while sparing surrounding structures (i.e., the skin). Total temporary hair removal, which lasts for several months, can be done in almost all patients. However, total permanent laser hair removal is not commonly done. Stable permanent hair removal may be possible in some cases and usually requires multiple treatment sessions. You can read about Laser Hair Removal frequently asked questions

Who benefits from laser hair removal?

Almost anybody, however, this process works well for light-skinned, dark-haired individuals. There is no laser treatment yet that is effective for white, blond or red hair.

Be aware of some cautions if you go this route; such as dealing with existing bacterial or viral infections, psoriasis, or if you are on certain medications such as Accutane®. See your dermatologist for more details if you are considering laser hair removal.

Laser hair removal facts

  • The process can be mild to moderately uncomfortable.
  • Most patients require three to six treatments. Long-lasting results depend on hair color, type of laser, and location treated.
  • Complications are rare if performed by an experienced physician.
  • Expect some pain, swelling and redness around the hair follicle after each treatment session.
  • Check with your dermatologist about pre-operative care concerns.

Folliculitis alert

Shaving can also cause a condition called folliculitis, which is an inflammation or infection of hair follicles. It most often appears in areas that become irritated by shaving, the rubbing of clothes, or where follicles and pores are blocked by oils and dirt. Ask our dermatologist about solutions such as Bactroban© ointment to help heal these irritations. (Read more about Bacterial Skin Infections)

What to watch for:

  • a reddened rash
  • raised, red, often pus-filled lesions around hair follicles (pimples)
  • itching at the site of the rash and pimples

How to prevent it:

  • shave with an electric razor instead of a blade razor
  • keep skin clean
  • avoid clothing that rubs against the skin, damaging hair follicles

How Your Lifestyle Affects Your Skin

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Researchers have found that diet and lifestyle alone will suffice to prevent about two-thirds of all skin cancers. While anyone can develop skin cancer, the risk is greatest for people with light-colored skin that freckle easily, researchers said. But what about other factors of your skin’s care?

How often have you skipped your meals just because you were too busy to eat or may be too tired to eat? Our highly materialistic life and hectic schedules have made us too busy to even think about what we are eating. Professionals who do not have time to waste on cooking would simply go and grab a burger or a hot dog along with cola and call it lunch.

For the time being, a burger and a cola would be just enough to satiate your hunger but have you ever given a thought to the long-term implications of such a diet and lifestyle?

The human body’s nutritional needs are highly specific. It needs a certain amount of carbohydrates, proteins and fats. Foods like burgers, pizzas or ice creams do not meet our nutritional needs. You don’t have to plainly eat to satiate hunger instead you should eat to meet your body’s nutritional needs. A diet deficient in all the essentials would eventually catalyze the effect of various potential diseases.

Skin reflects the kind of diet you take. You may have often wondered why there is a healthy glow on some people’s skin. Well, one of the possible factors apart from genetic would be a healthy diet and lifestyle. You might have noticed people who are chronologically younger but look way older than their age and vice versa. With good care of your skin you can control the effects of time on your skin and aging process.

Wrinkles appear on your skin when your skin’s ability of produce collagen reduces. Low collagen levels ultimately lead to the deterioration of the elastin tissues. The skin eventually looses its elasticity and firmness and starts to sag giving creases and folds i.e. wrinkles.

In order to slow down aging, you need a major diet and lifestyle change. You should eat right and healthy. Avoid fatty, oily foods and also foods with high glycemic index. Eat right amount of proteins in right quantities, loads of natural foods like fruits and vegetables and drink plenty of water. Make healthier choices and avoid fast food.

You also need to quit smoking if you are a heavy smoker. Quit alcohol and drugs too. You should incorporate a mild to moderate exercise like jogging, walking or running. Or you could detoxify with yoga. These changes will work wonders on your skin, giving it that healthy glow you always wanted.

These changes when incorporated at an early age, definitely slow down aging and the onset of diseases those come with age.

Eliminating Allergens

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If you suffer from sensitive or dry, delicate skin, you already know how difficult it can be to find a skin care product that does not cause a negative reaction. However, have you considered many other kinds of chemicals you are exposed to every day? Many unsuspecting products, like household cleaners, air pollution and even industrial chemicals in your furniture can induce inflammation in susceptible individuals. If you suffer from dry or sensitive skin, you are more at risk for reactions, especially if you are already experiencing extreme dryness or eczema symptoms.

To repair your natural skin barrier, you must first take active steps to build it up by eating healthy fats – like olives, avocados and raw nuts or butters and engaging in a natural healthy diet to start. To further help your condition, review the dermatological list below to identify, and where possible, eliminate allergy-causing ingredients. Whether what you experience is merely a sensitivity or full-blown allergic reaction, try to eliminate anything that causes inflammation and can degrade your skin barrier – and its ability to protect you from harmful irritants. Give your skin a chance to heal by protecting it from things that may cause a reaction.

1. Eliminate chemical ingredients in skin care and perfumes – including parabens and all manner of chemical substances until you have narrowed down your reactions.

2. Eliminate problem ingredients in soaps, shampoo, bath, body care, dental, shaving, and conditioning products and medications. Avoid products that foam or contain detergents. Always rinse thoroughly after cleansing and shampooing. Protect your skin with moisturizer afterwards.

3. Avoid direct contact with dish and laundry detergents, household cleansing products, paints, strippers, furniture polishes, and other ingredients containing harsh chemicals. Wear gloves, moisturize, or avo: altogether. Studies show that residual detergent remaining in launderei clothing may be a prime contributor to eczema. Rinse your clothing twice if your washing machine allows.

4. Notice whether fabrics in clothing, furniture, or bedding are irritating your skin due to their rough texture or chemicals treating them. Use hypoallergenic protectors on mattresses and large furniture if this is the case.

5. Pay attention to contact allergies from jewelry, flatware, and coins or metals containing nickel, a common allergen. Some are allergic to gold, so always be aware of unsuspecting culprits.

6. Only use quality filtered water and avoid hard water when possible. Chlorinated water, excessively hot water, or long soaks in baths, showers, or hot tubs, can strip precious oils from your skin.

If you consider all these factors and use them diligently, your skin barrier can be restored and you may be able to withstand common irritants and practices. But for now, notice what chemicals irritate you and avoid contact with them at all costs in order to give your skin a chance to rebuild itself. If you are unable to address your symptom on your own, ask a professional dermatologist about patch testing, which can help you determine exactly what your allergies may be.

Are Chemical Peels Right for You?

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With so many beauty products, facial treatments and surgical procedures available these days, it can be overwhelming to choose a treatment that is right for you. First off, when trying any new skincare treatment or procedure, it is always important to do your research, seek out reputable sources and never be afraid to ask questions, after all, it is your face – you only have one, so treat it accordingly. Selecting the right specialist or understanding details of a surgical procedure will be time consuming, be prepared to put in the time necessary to make the best choice. Below are some tips to help you get started.

Superficial Chemical Peels

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Chemical peeling is emerging as one of the most effective ways to combat skin aging. Chemical peels are one of the most frequently performed aesthetic procedures in North America. Its popularity continues to grow because of the versatility of conditions where chemical peels are of significant benefit. In addition to the topical preparations such as over-the-counter and prescription creams, chemical peels are one of the earliest forms of treatment adopted by many patients. At the same time, there is much confusion and misunderstanding surrounding chemical peels that prevents more of us from enjoying their undeniable benefits. Let’s go through the important facts about chemical peels and their uses in modern skin care regimens.

Categories of Chemical Peels:

1. Superficial chemical peels:

Broadly speaking, chemical peels can be divided into several categories based on the depth of penetration in the skin. Superficial chemical peels create an injury to the epidermis – the outermost layer of the skin. As such, they are recommended for the treatment of skin conditions that primarily affect the epidermis. Conditions such as acne, actinic keratosis, superficial (epidermal) melasma, mottled skin pigmentation, superficial wrinkling as well as mild photo-damage can greatly benefit from properly selected and applied superficial chemical peels.

* AHAs

Some of the most common examples of superficial chemical peels include a variety of alpha-hydroxy acids
(AHA,) salicylic acid as well as low concentration trichloroacetic acid (10% – 25%.) The most commonly used superficial chemical peels are members of AHA. Alpha-hydroxy acids is a group of compounds derived from food products including glycolic (from sugar cane,) lactic (from sour milk,) malic (from apples,) citric (from fruits) and tartaric acid (from grape wine.) Glycolic acid (GA) is a clear winner amongst the AHA as its small molecular weight allows it to penetrate into the skin and exert its influence on living and non-living (outermost layer) cells. These properties account for the popularity of this product in both cosmetic as well as medical preparations.

In low concentrations, 5 – 10%, GA reduces cell adhesion in the top layer of the skin. This action promotes exfoliation of the outermost layer of the skin accounting for smother texture following regular use of topical GA. This relatively low concentration of GA lends itself to daily personal use as a monotherapy or a part of a broader skin care management for such conditions as acne, photodamage, wrinkling as well as selected cases of melasma.

In higher concentrations, between 10 and 50%, the benefits of GA are more pronounced but are limited to temporary skin smoothing without much long lasting results. This is still a useful concentration to use as it can prepare the skin for more efficacious GA concentrations (50 – 70%) as well as prime the skin for deeper chemical peels such as higher concentration trichloroacetic acid.

At higher concentrations, 50 – 70% applied for 3 to 8 minutes under the supervision of a physician, GA promotes separation between the cells and can be used to treat acne, photodamage (such as mottled dyspigmentation, superficial melasma or fine wrinkles) as well as superficial scars. The benefits from such short contact application depend on the pH of the solution (the more acidic the product [lower pH,] the more pronounced the results,) the concentration of GA (higher concentrations produce more vigorous response,) the length of application and prior skin conditioning such as prior use of topical vitamin A acid products. Although single application of 50 – 70% GA will produce beneficial results, multiple treatments every 2 to 4 weeks are required for optimal results.

* Salicylic Acid

Salicylic acid is a member of beta-hydroxy acid group. Because of its improved lipid solubility compared to the AG, it is particularly effective in the treatment of acne. In addition, it is not as inflammatory and some physicians use it extensively for the treatment of melasma. Low concentration trichloroacetic acid (10% – 25%) can also be used to treat the conditions affecting superficial epidermis but its use is limited to experienced physicians as more detailed patient selection and application care is required. As such, physician supervision is required for all peels except low concentration glycolic acid (up to 35%) and salicylic acid peels (below 20%.) This precaution is necessary to prevent inadvertent worsening of the skin condition as well as scarring.

Although in some instances only one superficial peel can accomplish desired effects, in most cases a series of peels is recommended to achieve optimal results. Superficial peels are an excellent way to introduce oneself to the rejuvenating power of these common aesthetic procedures. Done properly and with care, superficial peels are very safe treatment options for some of the most common conditions affecting facial skin.

It is important to understand that superficial chemical peels are peels with similar risks and side effects as other peels. Some of the side effects of superficial chemical peeling can include hyper- or hypo-pigmentation, persistent redness, scaring as well as flare up of facial herpes infections (“cold sores”). Caution needs to be exercised with some patients, particularly those suffering from rosacea or eczema. These patients are prone to skin irritation and even the mildest peels can cause injury to the skin. Fortunately, in most instances, such injury can resolve with time and optimal skin care. In cases of melasma, extreme caution needs to be taken, as it is possible to worsen this common and unforgiving skin condition. Any significant redness of the skin must be avoided.

Author: Mariusz J.A. Sapijaszko, MD FRCPC (Dermatology)

Home Toner Recipes

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Blueberry Toner
Make this mask the day you plan to use it, and do not store.

3 tablespoons steamed, crushed blueberries
1/2 C. sour cream or plain yogurt
Purée ingredients in a blender at low speed until well mixed and fluffy. Apply to face and neck.  Let penetrate for 15-20 minutes. Rinse off with tepid water.  If you find the mask is too runny after blending, you should refrigerate for one hour or until of the consistency you desire.

ALMOND FACIAL MILK
The herbal waters are antiseptic and toning. Grapefruit seed extract is available in health food stores, and is included in the recipe as a preservative.
•    1/2 cup rose, lavender, or distilled water
•    1 teaspoon pure vegetable glycerin
•    1/4 to 1 teaspoon cold pressed organic almond oil
•    12 drops grapefruit seed extract
Make the rose or lavender water by placing a small handful of dried organic rose petals or lavender in a pint mason jar and adding boiling water to cover. Let steep overnight, then thoroughly strain. Combine the remaining ingredients in a glass jar and shake to blend. Dab some on your fingers or a cotton ball and massage into your skin. Rinse with warm water. Keep stored in the refrigerator for no more than a month or so. Discard at the first sign of mold.

Apple Face & Neck Gelee

Yield: Approx. 2 applications
Ingredients:
4 teaspoons hot distilled water
1 teaspoon freshly juiced apple juice
1 teaspoon aloe vera gel
4 teaspoons vegetable glycerin
1 heaping teaspoon powdered pectin

Add the glycerin to the water/juice/gel combination and stir to fully incorporate.  Add the pectin while the liquid remains quite warm (if it cools, place it in the microwave or a double boiler to raise the temperature) and use a hand held electric mixer to blend, or stir vigorously to dissolve the pectin. Once the pectin has fully dissolved, a light gel will begin to form. This may take from 15 minutes to 1/2 hour. Once the gel sets, Apple Face & Neck Gelee is ready to use. Apply the gel in a layer to your clean, damp face and neck. Rest for 15 minutes. Rinse with warm water and follow with a light moisturizer if desired. Leftover product can be stored in the refrigerator for about a week. Enjoy!! The shelf life of this product is necessarily limited by the fresh apple juice. It should be used within a few days after it is made.

APPLE SKIN TONER

Intended for slightly oily skins, we’re told by our skincare team that Apple Toner is an excellent substitute for rubbing alcohol (a real no-no, as it actually stimulates the oil glands to produce more oil).
Combine 2/3 cup witch hazel,
1/3 cup of apple cider vinegar,
and several drops of Lavender Essential Oil (or essential oil of your choice).

Mix, and add to clean bottle. Shake bottle well before using, and then dampen a cotton ball or pad saturated with your toner, and swab over face. Witch hazel is a gentle astringent, apple cider vinegar will help restore your skin’s natural ph balance, and lavender soothes sensitive skin.

BASIL ACNE TONIC

Basil is known for its “soothing and toning” properties.
2 to 3 teaspoons dried basil leaves
1 C. boiling water
Steep basil leaves in water for 10 to 20 minutes. Cool, then apply to face with a white cotton ball.   Keep tonic refrigerated.  Recommended shelf life: 90 days.

Facial Toners

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Alcohol-free Facial Toner

Facial toner should not be confused with astringent, which can strip the skin of its vital acid balance due to higher concentrations of alcohol. Alcohol-free toner helps to instantly restore the natural PH level of your skin. Toning is a step usually taken after cleansing and before moisturizing. It works best to help balance the skin, remove residual cleanser, clear the pores and soothe the skin.

“Alcohol-free facial toner is a vital transition between cleansing and treatment. The Vivoderm toner, for example, is enriched with minerals and natural herbal astringents to purify hydrate and normalize the skin. The grape seed and green tea extracts soothe and tone the skin preparing it to readily receive the maximum benefits of skin care to follow,” reports Dr. Noushin Adhami, Vice President of Vivoderm Laboratories.

Natural facial toner that combines herbal ingredients, like grape seed or green tea extract work more holistically than alcohol-based astringents. Grape seed contains “oligomeric proanthocyanidin” or OPCs showing medicinal and pharmacological properties against oxidative-caused cellular stress. Radical-scavenging effects have also been reported. The bioflavonoids in grape seed are water-soluble and have antioxidant and ‘adaptogenic’ or stress-resistant properties, which help defend against a number of negative environmental factors, including smoke, radiation and chemicals. Green tea extract has been reported act as a protective agent of skin from ultraviolet light.

What all this means is, in order to achieve optimal health, your skin needs sufficient blood supply, hydration, moisture, oxygen and thickness. The natural facial toner is also a complementary part of the anti-aging prevention tools. Facial toner should promote skin health and vitality by toning the skin and retaining the skin’s natural moisture.

Ayurvedic overview for Acne and Rosacea – part II

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The word Ayurveda translates to “the science of life” (Ayru – life and Veda – science). Ayurveda has brought true health and wellness to millions of individuals throughout the ages with simple changes in daily living practices. Incorporating just a few of these proven methods into your lifestyle can bring about radical changes in your life.

It is currently considered a form of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) within the United States of America, but this ancient art of healing has been practiced continuously for over 5,000 years.

That said, there are some specific treatments that many recognize as effective treatments for skin conditions. For starters, regardless of the skin condition, Ayurvedic practitioners suggest staying hydrated. Ayurvedic practitioners believe that water helps to naturally stabilize dry or oily skin. Drinking enough water also helps prevent the loss of moisture through the skin, which helps to promote overall wellness.

Ayurveda also recommends adhering to a daily regimen for proper skin care, including the use of a natural soap and the use of natural skin moisturizers. This is true whether a person has naturally dry skin or suffers from a more serious condition such as psoriasis. The key is to make sure that the moisturizer is, in fact, natural, containing only substances such as aloe vera—a natural antibiotic that many believe is particularly helpful in the treatment of many skin conditions. Unfortunately, many commercially available moisturizers contain preservatives and other chemicals, and do not fully absorb into the skin, instead remaining on the surface and sometimes clogging pores as a result.

In addition to proper hydration and skin care, Ayurvedic medicine has identified three natural supplements that appear to help treat a wide range of skin conditions—neem, haemafine syrup and khadir. All three of these are widely prescribed to treat acne, psoriasis, and eczema, although many believe they can be used to treat any skin condition. The tree stem, root, and bark of neem, a large evergreen tree, have antibacterial properties. It is used in supplement form to treat skin conditions. In addition, many Ayurvedic soaps contain neem extract. Haemafine syrup is a natural solution made up of more than a dozen herbs. It is used as a remedy for all types of skin diseases through its natural blood purification properties. Khadir, also known as the acacia catechu herb, is another natural blood purifier used to treat skin conditions.

Besides supplements, some Ayurvedic sources also suggest that a person with a skin condition receive an abhyanga, a traditional Ayurvedic massage that uses herbalized oils to draw toxins out through the skin.

Is Ayurveda Safe?

Ayurvedic practitioners argue that their treatments have fewer side effects than prescription drugs and other traditional medical therapies, since Ayurveda is a completely natural approach. However, certain treatments, such as herbal supplements, should be taken with caution, since they can interact with other medications or even produce side effects such as rises in blood pressure. So as with any new medical treatment, consult your doctor prior to beginning any Ayurvedic therapies. This is especially true for people with pre-existing conditions such as diabetes, or for women who are pregnant.

Your Organic Skin

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Your Organic Skin

Skin is the armor of the body. It is the outside waterproofing, element-fighting surface that protects our internal organs and skeletal structure from the harsh outside elements. Yet skin, overall is ignored most of the time. Healthy skin is important for a glowing completion of course, but if your body is unhealthy – your skin will be also.

The toxic world of industrialization has finally caught up with us. Producing toxic waste disasters, disease and tons of garbage buried so deep it can never breakdown. All these “modern advancements” have left our food supply as little more than a chemical compound in itself. If you can do ONE thing to give your skin and your body a fighting chance, you would be wise to choose as organic a diet as possible. To maintain a healthy skin, organically grown food is must.

Dry Skin Help with Diet

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There are lots of things you can do with your diet and supplements that can help your dry skin. To combat dry skin, your body needs fats to build fat-rich cells that hold on to moisture. Saturated, monounsaturated and omega-3 fats are key components in the cell membranes . Vegetarians (who eat eggs and dairy products but not meat) eat about one-third less saturated fat than the average meat eater. Vegans (who eat no animal products of any kind) only receive about one half as much saturated fat as the average meat-eating American. As a result, they obtain from their diet much less cholesterol than omnivores.

The best way to assure you get a healthy diet of skin-enhancing fats is by eating a wide variety of whole plant foods. You can get fats from nuts, seeds, olives and avocados Use olive oil, replete with monosaturated fat, for cooking and salad dressings. Coconut oil is also an excellent alternative for it retains its stability at high temperatures. Try to avoid processed foods and deep-fried foods that are rich in trans fats and omega-6 polyrrnsaturated fats. These fats contribute to the production of free radicals, the by-products of oxidation, which is a skin aging process that antioxidant vegetables help tame. Although for many years polyunsaturated vegetable oils, like canola, corn, safflower, and soy were recommended, c anola oil is actually unstable when heated and the processed used to stabilize it turns a certain percentage of the oil into a trans fat.

Eating the undesirable fats found in these oils (as well in trans-fat containing foods such as margarine, most baked goods, fried foods, processed foods and sweets )may increase both wrinkling and the risk of developing skin and other cancers including melanoma. Vegetarians can eat eggs and dairy to obtain saturated fats while vegans can obtain them from coconut oil.

Fish oils are good sources of omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids which can increase the lipid content of your cells. They can be obtained from fish like salmon, as well as supplements with Omega-3 or Cod Liver Oil capsules. Omega-3s help your skin by providing essential fats needed for cellular integrity while they also prevent inflammation which can lead to the formation of dark spots in pigmented skin types.
Antioxidants are helpful in fighting free radicals – renegade oxygen molecules that cause cellular aging and wrinkles.

Also look for products that contain ingredients that help your skin retain moisture, such as essential fatty acids along with ingredients like lecithin to strengthens kin cell membranes. Look for products that are also third party tested to ensure they are free of environmental toxins. It is important in purchasing essential fats to ensure that you find a pure, well-tested source, free of environmental contaminants.

Several studies have suggested that it is better to get antioxidants through natural food sources instead of supplements, but if this is not possible or additional vitamin intake is needed, supplements can be a valuable help.

SUPPLEMENTS
The following oral supplements that contain the below nutrients can all be helpful to your skin:

Selenium is a powerful antioxidant mineral. Selenium. Some scientific evidence suggests that consumption of selenium may reduce the risk of certain forms of cancer. However, FDA has determined that this evidence is limited and not conclusive. Vitamins A, C, E, B5, alpha lipoic acid, and grape seed extract, Ester-C , CoQro, lutein, as well as zinc, selenium, copper, and lycopene. Take these supplements according to the manufacturer’s directions.

Is it too late to save my bad skin?

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“I never paid much attention to my skin because I never had any skin problems. I never bothered with skin care products because I didn’t need to. Now I’m seeing wrinkles and spots forming, I guess it’s just too late to anything about it.” If this sounds like you, you may want to keep reading.Never fear, because there is still much that you can do to help your skin. If you are lost in sea of product choices, you can still be assured cosmetic dermatology can offer many alternative treatments.

Not surprisingly, many adults rarely consult a dermatologist that is until AFTER the signs of aging have appeared. Wrinkles, of course, are the chief complaint. Your skin may feel rough to the touch, and even sore, especially in drying environmental conditions such as on an airplane or in a low-humidity environment like the desert or high-altitude cities. In the winter, when indoor heating is used, your skin gets even more dehydrated, making the wrinkles look worse. Your skin may catch on rough clothing. You may also notice wrinkles on your neck or others parts of your body.

Those who have never had skin issues or were blessed to even have beautiful skin for most of the lives, are now desperate to address the skin wrinkles and many run to the dermatologist feeling a lot of regret. Although genes certainly play a role in one’s skin condition, decades of neglect, or even mistreatment of their skin is most frequently the source of their skin problems. Many say that if they knew then what they know now, they would have done things very differently and taken better care of their skin.
There are numerous explanations for unhealthy skin but the main causes tend to be an unhealthy diet, an ineffectual cleansing routine, and poor lifestyle choices.

Poor Diet
Your skin is a living, breathing organ of the body and it needs proper nourishment and hydration to look and feel its best. When your skin is deprived of the necessary vitamins, minerals, and nutrients that it needs it is unable to functional at optimal levels and the structure slowly begins to break down. This breakdown results in dry skin, blemishes, discoloration, wrinkles, and premature ageing.

In order to avoid this breakdown you need to feed your skin a varied mix of important nutrients each day. Ingesting sufficient amounts of vitamin A, a nutrient that can be found in citrus fruits and orange vegetables, can help you avoid dry skin and blemishes. Eating foods rich in the vitamin B group like brewer’s yeast or breads, or taking a vitamin B group supplement, can help you ward of skin discoloration, dry skin, dermatitis, shallow skin, and premature ageing.

To help discourage wrinkles, pale skin, sun damage, blemishes, and other unhealthy skin symptoms, nutrients like calcium, protein, iodine, niacin, folic acid, iron, and copper are very important to a healthy diet. Get these effective skin helpers by enjoying foods like mild, eggs, cheese, chicken, fish, leafy vegetables, fruits, and grains.

Poor Hygiene
Another common cause of unhealthy skin is poor hygiene. Whether this involves the failure to clean your skin often enough or the use of an ineffective cleansing routine, built-up dirt and grime can lead to blemishes, premature ageing, shallowness, dry skin, and wrinkles.

When your skin is not properly cleaned on a regular basis, dirt, pollution and other harmful substances are allowed to build up on your skin and clog the pores. Clogged pores result in breakouts, dry skin, and the reduction of cell renewal.

To get the most out of your cleansing routine make sure that you wash your skin twice a day, everyday. Also, make sure that you are using an effective cleanser like a soap that is specially formulated for deep cleansing. Make sure that you use gentle pressure when cleaning the skin, do not scrub or pull on the skin since this can result in tiny tears that are susceptible to irritation and infection. Finally, always follow your cleansing routine with a hydrating moisturizer that also contains a sunscreen in order to hydrate your skin and protect it from sun damage.

Bad Lifestyle Habits
Even if you enjoy a healthy diet and pay special attention to your skin care regime you can still be sabotaging the health of your skin by indulging in unhealthy habits. Habits like sun tanning, smoking, choosing fizzy drinks or sodas over water, and wearing heavy makeup can lead to the development of unhealthy skin. Avoid excessive sun exposure, always wear sunscreen with an SPF (sun protection factor) of at least 15, stop smoking and avoid those who smoke, drink plenty of water, and choose light cosmetics if you want your skin to stay young and healthy looking for years to come.

Buying Skin Care Products

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For you as a consumer in the billion-dollar skin care industry, lack of information about products is costly, and you have to bridge the gap between. Without accurate information, you are throwing your money away, because you are completely at the mercy of advertisers and marketers. Knowing more specific information about your skin needs, such as your true skin type, you can take control of your skin.

In 2001, the average American owned about five hundred dollars’ worth of cosmetic products, and this amount has surely risen dramatically as more and more expensive product lines have been developed since that time. Do you really need to spend that much to get quality skin care? No. What truly matters is not your skin cream’s price, but whether it’s right for your Skin Type. No matter how glamorous its packaging or delicious its feel, that four-hundred-dollar cream is not right for everyone. (In fact, some types don’t need to use any skin cream at all.)

Proper information – not hype – will save you the expense, trouble, and waste of buying the wrong products-while directing you to the right ones. Ingredients are the only thing that should drive your purchasing decisions and once you’ve learned what all the jargon and 14-syllable words mean, you too will be better able to read a cosmetic label and figure out if it’s appropriate for you.
Again, products should be chosen based on their ingredients first, manufacturing practices, and formulations.
Also try to research the clinical trial data of the products, when available, to choose wisely those that have proven effective. Leading dermatologists recommend following these criteria before buying any skin care:

Make sure the product…

1. Contains the right ingredients for your skin type
2. Contains sufficient amounts of active ingredients to be effective
3. Do not contain counterproductive ingredients
4. Are formulated effectively for your needs
5. Are packaged to maintain stability of the active ingredients
6. Are cosmetically elegant (smell good and feel good)
7. Are Approved from those who’ve used them
8. Are easily available for purchase

Ayurvedic imbalances and doshas

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Ayurvedic skin care is derived from medicinal practices that began over 5,000 years ago. Ayurveda practices the belief that there are three basic principles (or humors) born out of five basic elements that exist in nature. These principles are known as Vata, Pitta, and Kapha. These principles are believed to work together in harmony to make up the entire body. For each dosha (or physical type), symptoms tend to appear in groups, because the body-mind responds to imbalance as a whole:

Do you know how to have beautiful skin?

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In summary it’s not enough to get a facial to keep your skin clear and beautiful. You need to have a great home skin-care routine.

1. Get a professional facial to deep cleanse your skin at least four times a year, as the seasons change. Every 4-6 weeks is ideal.
2. Throw away the soap and use quality skin care products that are right for your skin type.
3. Wear sunscreen, even on cloudy days and in the winter. Use a good quality, high-SPF sunscreen. Sun damage is the single most important cause of premature aging.
4. Cut out skin-damaging habits like smoking, excessive drinking, and tanning booths.

Dry Skin Diet Tips

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Dry Skin Diet Tips and the Mediterranean Diet

We all know how important diet is to building healthy, beautiful skin. But did you know eating the right foods and avoiding the wrong ones can actually help prevent wrinkles and minimize the signs of aging?
According to a recent article in the UK’s Daily Telegraph, “Eating a Mediterranean diet can halve the risk of the most dangerous form of skin cancer, research suggests.” The recent study may eventually prove regular intake of fruit, vegetables, nuts and fish may protect against malignant melanoma.

The” Mediterranean diet,” which features plenty of vegetables, legumes, and olive oils, may be a catalyst for the body to absorb and benefit from fat-soluble antioxidant vitamins and phytochemicals, such as vitamin E, lycopene, and isoflavones. In this light, organic produce has been shown to contain a higher level of beneficial antioxidants than conventionally raised fruits and vegetables.

So, what does all this mean if you suffer from dry skin or sensitive skin? With dry skin issues, it is important to get the right types fats into your diet. But what are the right types of fats? For example, increased intake of saturated fat and monounsaturated fat in the diet has been associated with a decrease skin hydration. So consuming some saturated fats but not too many, seems to be best.
Countless studies show that an omega-3 fat deficiency is associated with dry skin and skin problems like eczema. That’s why it is important to consume adequate amounts of these essential fats, found in fatty fish, fish oils, flaxseeds, flaxseed oil, etc.

Be aware of the difference from the omega-6 polyunsaturated vegetable oils (including corn, canola, and safflower), formerly hailed as healing for the heart. Meaning, most need to eat more omega-3s and less omega-6 oils.
The dairy products you eat (and avoid) can also make a difference in skin aging. Butter, full-fat milk, margarine, and sweets should be minimal, while yogurt, cheese, and reduced-fat milk are neutral in their aging effects.

The epidermis (upper layer of the skin) is composed of 25 percent monounsaturated fatty acids. In the cell membranes, both monosaturated fats and saturated fats resist oxidation, a key process in cellular aging. Omega-6 polyunsaturated oils, on the other hand, contribute to the production of free radicals, the by-products of oxidation – also the cause of the skin aging process. This would increase both wrinkling and the risk of developing skin and other cancers, including melanoma. Polyphenols, found in fresh fruits, vegetable and herbs can protect the body’s cells against the damaging effects of oxidative stress, a process by which oxygen-rich molecules can attack and destroy cells in much the same way as rust rots a car.
Therefore, it is beneficial to eat more olive oil (a monounsaturated) while avoiding omega-6 polyunsaturated oils, such as corn, canola, safflower and others. Included in this list of foods to avoid, are the trans fats, present in margarine, most baked goods, fried, processed foods, and sweets, which are oxidized polyunsaturates, making them even more detrimental. In certain studies they have been shown to block healthy Omega -3 fats. High trans-fats content may interfere with the hormonal pathways needed for healthy fat metabolism and preventing inflammation.

Consuming the omega-3s and avoiding unhealthy oils that block them will help the body absorb the vital lipids needed in the skin cells and improve the hormonal actions. Since skin aging is caused by hormonal shifts that occur naturally in the aging process, it’s best to eliminate the polyunsaturated and trans fats as much as possible.

Fish oils and fish are the purest sources of omega-3 fatty acids,which can increase the lipid content of your cells. These fats have been shown to improve psoriasis and other severe dry skin conditions. If you are pregnant or nursing, please be aware of the mercury content in your fish – which has been shown to cause detrimental effects to mothers, and young children, so supplements may be the best way of obtaining these fats vital to skin health.

Dry, sensitive, and wrinkled skin can also be helped with a diet rich in antioxidants obtained from fresh fruits and vegetables, such as spinach, kale, collard greens, turnips, romaine lettuce, broccoli, leeks, corn, peppers, peas, and mustard greens. Egg yolks and oranges contain the antioxidant lutein. Lutein is an important natural antioxidant that may help your eyes stay healthy while maintaining the health of your skin.
So, to recap your skin-healthy diet should include:
• Fats from whole foods-nuts, seeds, olives, and avocados
• A wide variety of whole plant foods
• Monounsaturated fats, such as olive or nut oils
• Good sources of omega3 oils (never heated) or in capsule form
• Moderate use of omega-6 oils (corn, safflower, canola and soy oils)
• Limited amounts of processed foods and deep-fried foods
• Pure sources of omega3 fats, including a source of essential fatty acids (EFA)

Home salt scrub recipe for beautiful skin

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Most cleansers, makeup, and other beauty products are full of harsh synthetic chemicals that may be harmful to skin. Natural skin care solutions for healthy skin are much better for you, support a cleaner environment and natural techniques work at least as well.

Essential oils are some of nature’s best helpers in almost every aspect of health. Many times more potent
than dried herbs, essential oils contain all the healing properties of a plant in a very concentrated form. For this reason, they are best used in tiny amounts and are often diluted for skin care.

Sea salt is the world’s most mineral-rich exfoliant. The minerals in sea water are known to nourish and
heal skin. The same minerals can be found in unprocessed, mineral-rich sea salt, and the coarseness of
salt makes it a perfect exfoliant. Try the following whole-body sea salt scrub.
Combine 1 Cup sea salt with 2 tablespoons Apricot or Almond Oil, add 5-6 drops of Peppermint Essential Oil.

1. Put salt in a bowl and add the oils.
2. Mix well.
3. Store in covered container until ready to use.

This recipe is best used in the shower after washing. Rub a small handful of the salt scrub over your body in brisk circular motions. Afterward, use a moisturizing anti aging skin care product. Fatty oils restore skin’s moisture and flexibility. Part of the benefit of the salt scrub recipe is the apricot or almond oil it contains, which leaves a nice glow and moisture in the skin. Using an oil cleansing method, surprisingly, is a simple and effective way to clean your face. Using olive oil, castor oil, and hot water leaves a lasting glow. Fatty vegetable oils can be used as moisturizers, makeup remover, cleansers if you want to keep your beauty products as pure as possible.

Ayurveda Remedies

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Listed below are external remedies for the most common skin problems. (Several of them are the contribution of Dr. Kirit Pandya, one of India’s foremost Ayurvedic physicians specializing in skin disease.) But please be aware, even a topical ointment or detoxification treatment is only a temporary remedy. If you continue with unhealthy lifestyle choices, new toxins will soon appear.

One of Ayurveda’s fundamental concepts is that health and disease are holistic-that is, whatever happens in one part of the body happens to the whole body. There are no isolated health problems. Any physical or psychological symptom of imbalance indicates an imbalance in the body-mind unit. Keep this holistic picture in mind as you look over the common skin problems below.

FROWN LINES and FOREHEAD LINES

Imbalance: Vata & Pitta. (The habit of frowning will produce lines even when there is no imbalance.)
Aggravated by: Anxiety, worry, excessive dehydration, too much sugar or protein, habitual frowning, alcohol-based astringents, excessive use oflemon, tomato, or cucumber juice.
Treatment:
• Mix 3 drops Bindi or Tej Vata essential oil in water and use as a daily mist to hydrate.
• Make a hydrating massage oil using a base of apricot kernel, avocado, sesame or almond oil + 2 drops each of sandalwood and geranium + 1 drop each of lemon and cardamom. With your fingers, massage the oil on forehead using a horizontal stroke.
• Do daily facial exercise: Alternately stretch and tighten forehead muscles; hold and release 3 times.
• Twice weekly, make a firming herbal mask using a paste of 1 tsp cornstarch or potato starch + 2 tsp aloe vera juice or egg white. Apply mask and lie down for 30-40 minutes. Cleanse, nourish, and moisturize as usual.
• Weekly, do an exfoliating enzyme mask: Apply pineapple or papaya pulp to face and lie down for 10 minutes. Cleanse, nourish, and moisturize as usual.

PREMATURE WRINKLES

Imbalance: Vata & Pitta.
Aggravated by: Dryness (less oil), dehydration (less water), stress, sun, wind, extreme temperatures, excessive exercise, travel, alcohol, coffee, tobacco, sweets, spicy foods, hot or cold water, sudden weight loss, water pills, hormone medication, diabetes, lack of purpose, lack of loving relationships, hereditary factors.
Treatment:
• Twice weekly, do a facial mask using a paste of 1 Tbsp sandalwood powder + 1 drop camphor oil + 3-4 drops lotus oil + 2 tsp water. With ring finger, gently massage a few drops of face oil made with sandalwood + rose oil directly under eyes for protection, then apply paste to rest of face. Cover eyes with wet cotton pads dipped in rosewater and lie down for 10-15 minutes. Cleanse, nourish, and moisturize as usual.
• Make a decoction of 1 Tbsp dry geranium in ?4 cup water, then apply to face using a cotton ball.
• Do natural face-lift and face exercises
• Supplements: Take recommended daily dosage of vitamin E and evening primrose oil capsules. Drink 6-8 glasses of water daily.

CROW’S-FEET, DRY EYES, AND EYE STRAIN

Imbalance: Pitta.
Aggravated by: Age, stress, worry, insomnia, alcohol, dehydration, squinting.
Treatment:
• Avoid chemical makeup removers and heavy eye creams. Use cotton dipped in plain vegetable oil to remove eye makeup.
• Wear sunglasses in daylight and avoid reading in the dark. Never look directly at sun.
• Twice daily, pinch the skin between your eyebrows, starting at the bridge of the nose and moving outward. Repeat 3-4 times.

DARK UNDER EYE CIRCLES
Imbalance: Brown circles: Vata; green-gray circles: Pitta.
Aggravated by: Anemia, ill health, lack of sleep, poor circulation, anxiety; hormonal imbalance, menstrual disorders, too many fried, frozen, and canned foods, beans, peanuts, salads.
Treatment:
• Lie down on slant board with feet raised for 5-10 minutes.
• Soak cotton pads in cold milk, rosewater, fig juice, or crushed mint juice, and place over closed eyes for 5-10 minutes.
• Apply crushed mint leaves around eyes for 5-10 minutes.
• Before bed, gently massage around eyes with saffron or almond oil
• Do daily blinking and palming exercises
• Supplements:Take 2-4 gms ashwangandha, shatavari, or ginseng herbal tablets or powder before lunch and dinner.

PUFFY EYES

Imbalance: Kapha.
Aggravated by: Hypertension, liver and kidney problems, poor elimination, low digestive fire, water retention, lack of sleep, hormonal changes.
Treatment:
• Make eyepads using either black tea bags soaked in warm water, cotton puffs dipped in witch hazel or celeryjuice, or gauze squares stuffed with 1 tsp grated raw potato. Place on closed eyes for 20 minutes.
• With your ring finger, press gently underneath the eye one point at a time from the inside corner to the outside corner to help drain the lymphatic fluids.
• Supplements: Take 1 tsp triphala every night; take 1,000 mg vitamin C, and eat black raisins and figs every day.

DRY, LINED, OR CRACKED LIPS

Imbalance: Vata.
Aggravated by: Smoking, drugs, cold, dryness, dehydration, age, excessive talking, licking lips. (Tradition states vertical lines above lip indicate unfulfilled sexual desire.)
Treatment:
• As often as you like, apply vitamin E oil, unsalted butter, or ghee directly to lips. Or, use a mixture of 5 drops each rose and sandalwood oil in 1 oz avocado oil.
• Melt in a double boiler 9 tsp lanolin + 1 tsp castor oil. Remove from heat, add 3-5 drops rose oil, and let it solidify. Apply over lipstick to seal, moisturize, and add gloss.
• Massage lips nightly with 1 oz sesame oil + 2-3 drops glycerin
• Take a mouthful of water and slosh around the inside of the lip area for 1 minute. I

Sun Safety for Skiers

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Higher altitude means increased levels of harmful UV exposure compared to sea level areas. UV exposure increases 8-10 percent with every 1,000 feet above sea level. At an altitude of 9-10,000 feet, UV may be 45-50 percent more intense than at sea level. In addition, snow reflects about 80 percent of the UV light from the sun, meaning that you are often hit by the same rays twice. This only contributes to the problem, further increasing the risk for skin cancer.

The combination of higher altitude and ultraviolet (UV) rays reflected by the snow puts skiers and snowboarders at an increased risk of sun damage and ultimately, skin cancer. More than 90 percent of all skin cancers are caused by sun exposure. It’s easy to associate winter with frostbite and windburn, but most people are unaware that UV rays can be even more damaging on the slopes than on the beach,it’s important to take proper precautions while on the slopes.

Both snow and strong wind can wear away sunscreen and reduce its effectiveness, so you have to take extra precautions. To protect your skin from the bitter cold, heavy winds and winter sun, follow these important sun protection tips:
• Use a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of 15 or higher whenever you spend time outdoors. Apply 30 minutes before hitting the slopes.Be aware that the sun’s reflection off the snow is strong even on cloudy days.
• Apply sunscreen liberally and evenly to all exposed skin – most skiers and snowboarders do not use enough sunscreen and therefore do not get the maximum protection.
• Use a more moisturizing sunscreen. Winter conditions can be particularly harsh on the skin.
• Be sure to cover often-missed spots: lips, ears, around eyes, neck, underside of chin, scalp and hands.
• Always wear a lip balm with an SPF 15 or higher. Lips are even more sensitive than most parts of the skin.
• Reapply at least every two hours, and more often after sweating or exposure to wind and snow.
• Carry a travel-sized sunscreen and lip balm with you on the slopes. Reapply on the chairlift, especially after a long, snow-blown run.

Cover up.

• Wear items like ski masks, which will cover most of the skin, leaving very little exposed to the wind and sun.
• UV-blocking sunglasses or goggles that offer 100% UV protection and have wraparound or large frames protect your eyelids and the sensitive skin around your eyes, common sites for skin cancer and sun-induced aging. The sun’s rays and glare can impair your vision, so it’s important to wear sunglasses or goggles to clearly see the terrain. Plus, it will increase your enjoyment and performance while skiing.
Be mindful of time spent in the sun, regardless of the season.
• Keep track of the time you spend in full sunlight. If possible, ski early in the morning and later on in the day, before 10AM and after 4PM. This helps avoid long lines and decreases the amount of time spent outdoors in the most intense hours of sunlight.

• If you are on the slopes for most of the day, take a few breaks indoors to reapply sunscreen.
• Drink plenty of water to avoid dehydration from the sun.
Enjoy the winter season, but be sure to take care of your skin to avoid the damage the cold season can cause.

The first organization in the U.S committed to educating the public and medical professionals about sun safety, The Skin Cancer Foundation is still the only global organization solely devoted to the prevention, detection and treatment of skin cancer. The mission of the Foundation is to decrease the incidence of skin cancer through public and professional education and research.