Posts Tagged ‘Sun Protection’
Aging is a normal process of life and the evidence of aging shows on our skin. As we age skin begins to thin, dry and dull due to slow cell turn over. New skin cells do not grow as quickly, resulting in thinning skin. As a result, dead skin cells shed less quickly making the appearance of the skin dull and dry. Collagen and elastin-the system of fibers that make skin firm and elastic-begin to break down, resulting in sagging and wrinkles. Pigmentation is more prominent as we age when melanocytes, (which produce skin pigment) begin to produce irregularly. Research has shown there are two different factors in aging; intrinsic or internal and extrinsic or external.
Intrinsic aging, the natural course of aging, has to do with genes and inheritance. Natural aging begins at birth; however, signs of aging begin to appear on the skin in our mid 20’s. Intrinsic aging includes slower cell turn over, and less collagen production. Elastin begins to break down which acts like a rubber band enabling our skin to stretch and snap back. Visible signs of intrinsic skin aging include fine lines, loss of suppleness, dry and thin skin.
Extrinsic aging are the external factors that age the skin. These include sun exposure, health and diet, gravity, sleeping positions, smoking, drinking and even facial expressions. External factors cause premature aging to the skin and can become visible rather quickly.
While intrinsic factors are mostly uncontrollable, fortunately, extrinsic aging is controllable. Skin aging is a normal process however, premature aging of the skin can be prevented. A healthy lifestyle, yearly physical exams and topical care of the skin can prevent premature aging. A healthy, active life style will create healthy, strong skin from the outside in, preventing premature aging. Physical exams may catch early signs of skin damage that then can be treated. Topical skin care allows the skin to absorb ingredients through topical products that aid in building the epidermis and dermal layers of skin, the skin that is and will become visible. Topical care includes skin care products such as cleansers, moisturizers, serums and sunscreens.
To prevent premature aging is to treat your skin as one of a kind. There are many different skin types, meaning what one person is doing to take care of their skin is not necessarily what you need to be doing to treat your skin. However, the most important products to aid in preventing premature aging are cleansers, exfoliates, moisturizers with hydrators and sunscreens. Cleansers will cleanse the skin clearing excess oil, dirt and debris. Exfoliates will slough off dead skin, deep clean pores and result in smoother more even skin tone. Moisturizers with hydrators will keep the skin supple and moist, while sunscreen will help to protect the skin from sun damage. It is also important to consider skin care products that include essential oils and antioxidants to help fight off free radicals that can further damage skin cells. Always consult a dermatologist before starting any skin care routine.
By Tiffany Oney
Tiffany Oney is a licensed esthetician, professional makeup artist and natural skincare authority. She is currently pursuing her Bachelor of Arts in Communications Studies California State University, Long Beach and interning with Vivoderm Natural Skincare in Los Angeles, California.
The old saying “youth is wasted on the young,” has a good foundation. Not until we are much older, do we realize the gravity of our choices when we are young. This goes for skin care as well. Young people often undermine the importance of a good skincare regimen. Proof of that are the numerous swarms of teens tanning on the beaches and by the pool or skipping sunscreen altogether when they engage in outdoor activities. Little did they know that wrinkled, loose skin will be their ultimate problem when they get older.
One of the major causes of loose, wrinkled skin is overexposure to the sun. The sun’s UV rays are harmful to the functions of our skin. It impedes our production of collagen and elastin thereby increasing our risk of developing wrinkles and saggy skin.
The effects of the sun do not stop there. You are also at risk of developing brown age spots and even skin cancer. Start reversing the damage by slapping on moisturizer with a high SPF level when you go outdoors. You should collect cosmetics and beauty products that contain a safe, natural SPF to make sure you are fully protected. Zinc Oxide is a great natural alternative to chemical-based sunscreens – providing a natural sun-reflector instead of a chemical ‘block’ that can be absorbed into the skin.
As for tightening loose skin, you have to choose a product that contains ingredients effective in bringing about a healthier level of collagen and elastin as these are the two components commonly lost when there is a loosening of skin.
Look for natural skin care treatments that contain only herbal, natural ingredients, like Aloe vera – to reduce sun damage and help heal skin or Chamomile – to reduce inflammation. Always use key ingredients that can heal your skin and help improve its production of healthy collagen and elastin. Using natural sun protection or a zinc-based moisturizer is your ally in firming up loose skin and warding off the development of wrinkles.
Women at the age of 35 should also protect their hyaluronic acid content as this is the age that we lose hyaluronic acid rapidly. It is imperative to safeguard hyaluronic acid because this promotes a healthier and younger-looking skin.
Make sure what you are using also contains beneficial essential oils like grape seed oil and avocado oil. Grape seed oil, apart from promoting skin elasticity, also contains antioxidants that can kill harmful free radicals. Avocado oil, on the other hand, is replete with all the necessary vitamins and minerals that can improve the immune functions of our skin.
Take all these in consideration and make sure you choose a facial cream carefully. After all, time here is of the essence.
And for clearer, younger looking skin, your anti aging skin care range of products should contain more natural active ingredients than any other “drug-store” brand, so be sure to read those labels carefully. Those ingredients like Aloe Vera, Almond Oil, Cocoa Butter, and Shea Butter are effective moisturizers, because they penetrate deeply to “nourish” the skin. So, they never feel greasy and come from natural sources less likely to cause allergic reactions.
Also be aware to shop for natural products that report no negative or adverse effects. Skin care prodcuts that are hypo-allergenic, fragrance free and can be used on any skin-type are best.
The market today is flooded with beauty products. Everywhere you look, another new product is on the shelf (or on the website). So, how does one choose which is the best product for them? If you are inclined to treat your skin naturally-meaning without harsh chemicals-then organic or natural skin care may be the best for you. Not only do these products help your skin in a more balanced, natural way, they are also much less harmful to yourself and the environment.
Below are five basic steps in keeping skin healthy, along with the use of organic skin care products.
Eat and maintain a balanced diet. Fruits and vegetables contain vitamins and minerals that help you maintain a healthy skin the natural way. Avoid processed and greasy foods. Familiarize yourself with healthy, organic food that you enjoy and will promote better health. Supplements will also provide assistance in keeping your whole body healthy. Keeping the entire body healthy is the primary key for healthy cells. This is the most important organic skin care tip. Skin can only look as good as the nutrients you feed your body. The skin is the primary conduit for the liver to process toxins.
1. Drink plenty of water. A huge percentage of the body is composed of water. Water intake will help you clean the body. Water also hydrates the body and helps prevent dry skin. Well-hydrated cells function well. Cells that function well can help maintain youth. The more active a person is, the more water he/she needs. Eight glasses of water a day is the recommended amount of water intake, however, as for athletes and energetic people, more is needed to replace the fluid they excrete through perspiration. There is no replacement to drinking plenty of water and this is not only a great organic skin care rule but a great habit to adopt.
2. Exercise. Aside from a boost in energy, moderate work outs promote blood circulation and increase oxygen in the blood stream. Both help in maintaining the youth of your skin.
3. Wash your face with mild cleansing products. Cleansing products with strong substances can harm cells. Ensure that you use clean water when washing the cleansing products off your skin. Don’t rub your skin vigorously with the towel – it irritates the skin. Wipe gently with soft cloth. Organic skin care products are milder than those with synthesized or processed ingredients and don’t need to be scrubbed off.
4. Use organic skin care products when possible. Products with natural ingredients will clean you r skin just as well as those full of chemicals. The closer the ingredients are to their natural state, the less harmful for your skin. Most organic products work with the body’s natural process in fighting harmful elements and potential diseases as opposed to chemically forcing the skin to respond to treatment.
5. Moisturizers are recommended for all skin types. Even oily skin loses its natural moisture after using harsh cleansing products. If your skin is not properly moisturize, it will dry and age faster. Toners help in cleaning traces of dirt and cosmetics not easily removed with the use of cleansers. Try to use a product containing zinc or a natural sunblocking agent to protect your face from the harmful UVB rays of the sun.
Organic skin care gives you the greatest opportunity to have a healthy skin, without using harmful ingredients. The appearance of your skin indicates the state of your health. If you are suffering from acne or any other skin condition, try treating it from the inside out first. Give your body a chance to balance itself with healthy foods and supplements before you spend hundreds of dollars on topical treatments. Your skin is your body’s armor, protecting your from the elements. Help it do its job.
Skin wrinkles are caused by two main factors: heredity and the environment. There is little you can do about heredity and the natural aging process, but there is something you can do about the other causes. Pollution in the environment, sun exposure and stress can all lead to premature aging of the skin. Using anti aging creams is beneficial for reducing the appearance of wrinkles. The creams are even more effective when combined with regular facials.
While there are thousands of products on the market today to cure or prevent acne, bellow are some natural remedies you can start using right away from home. Start first by cleansing your face to rid of oil and dirt before you apply the remedy listed below.
Oranges and Lemons
Oranges and lemons can be very effective in treating acne. Simply squeeze an orange or lemon juice onto a cotton pad or a small towel, and then dab it onto the acne infected areas. Leave it on for 20 minutes and wash off with water. This acid in the citrus juice will minimize your pimples and take the redness away after a couple of days.
Simply slice a raw potato and rub it on your acne areas. The vitamins in the raw potato help rid redness and improve your complexion. The potato properties actually break down the bacteria causing acne.
Some natural anti-acne products you will find in the market are Tea Tree Oil, Aloe Vera, Zinc, and Vitamin A and have been used with some success to cure acne. A word of caution about ‘natural’ skin care items. They often contain certain chemicals for preservation purposes. Some of these may not be advisable for you if you’re pregnant or have certain special health considerations. As mentioned, it is best to consult with your doctor before embarking on any therapy.
Tea Tree Oil
Tea Tree Oil is obtained from the Melaleuca alternifoliais tree from Australia. It is very effective against acne as it contains bacteria-fighting substances called Terpenes. Acne is often caused by bacteria and the Terpenes either outright kill them or weaken them enough to be destroyed by protective antibodies. There are very little side effects from using Tea Tree Oil.
The watery gel from Aloe Vera plant is also a highly effective natural cure against acne. The enzyme-rich gel has very soothing anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties. It can also be taken internally and helps clean up and detox the digestive tract. This in turn can help clear up the skin.
Zinc is taken in the form of capsules. It helps to strengthen the human immune system and to repair the skin.
Vitamin A tablets are also a natural and effective acne cure. Vitamin A promotes healthy skin.
Vitamin E also helps in countering acne. It is a natural antioxidant and beneficial for the skin. Vitamin E comes in soft gelatin capsules that contain Vitamin E, Soybean Oil, Glycerin, and Water.
Some Natural Homemade Cures to counter Acne
The most important thing to do if you suffer from acne is to drink at least four pints of water every day. Drinking water is very beneficial to your skin. Don’t forget to include fresh fruit and leafy green vegetables in your daily diet to bring about a marked improvement in the quality of your complexion.
Before bathing, apply a mixture of pure tomato pulp – fresh from the tomato– honey and rose-water to your face and keep for twenty minutes before washing off.
At night, before going to bed, apply a mix of cream, glycerine, and lemon juice to your face and again keep it on for a short while before washing.
Regular Yoga exercises will also improve skin and overall health.
Things to Avoid
Avoid touching your face all the time, keep your hair away from your face, and avoid picking at pimples.
If you are prone to acne try to avoid using heavy make-up –it is preferable to avoid make-up altogether until your skin can heal itself.
Tip #1: Use A Powerful Sunscreen
Tip #2: Moisturize Your Skin
Tip #3: Exfoliate Your Skin
Tip #4: Hydrate Your Body
Tip #5: Shave Properly
Sun damage or photo damage produces both skin cancers as well as photo-aging. Photo-aging shows itself on the skin as wrinkling, scaling, dryness, and mottled pigmentation. Ultra-violet light is absorbed by skin, which in turn produces a photo-chemical reaction.
The UVA light is absorbed by both DNA as well as urocanic acid, the photo-chemical reaction produces oxidation of both DNA, nucleide acid, and protein, as well as lipids, this is known as oxidative damage. Anti-oxidants have been evolved to protect against, and reverse some of the damage produced by sunlight. An anti-oxidant mechanism is very advanced in plants that protect against the damage from sun exposure.
Oxidation is produced by reactive oxygen molecules. The DNA absorbs ultra-violet light mostly in the UVB (290-320 manometres) range. This produces damage mainly within the epidermis. UVA (320-400 manometres) penetrates deeper into the skin and produces damage in the epidermis, the dermis as well as affecting blood vessels. The UVA has a much more oxidizing effect on cells.
The carcinogenic or cancer forming effects of ultra-violet B produce mutations within the DNA. This initiates tumours within the epidermis. The UVA promotes these tumours as it has much more oxidizing stress on the skin than UVB. It may as a result be more cytotoxic and immunosuppressive.
Sunscreens certainly protect against ultra-violet light, the sunburning spectrum is UVB and sunscreens are very effective. Ultra-violet A is the most difficult to protect against. It is important to realize that the SPF numbers are calculated with an amount of sunscreen on skin that exceeds what most of us put on our own skin.
The SPF is calculated with a quantity of 2mg. of sunscreen per centimetre2. Most people will put on about half to one quarter of this when used as sun protection. Unfortunately, low quantities of sunscreen of per centimtre2 will have minimal sun protective effects. Usually if 5mg. per cm.2 of sunscreen is applied to the skin, the sun protective factor is in the region of an SPF of 3.
Anti-oxidants play a significant part in the protective and repair mechanisms within animals and plants. This can be achieved by anti-oxidants that are produced within the skin itself or by those consumed or applied from plants. The anti-oxidant effects can be divided into those that have their protection through enzymes, and those that tend to reduce the quantity of hydrogen peroxide as well as lipid hydroperoxides.
If you suffer from any type of facial malady, most experts will agree, the first rule of skin care is: cleanse, nourish, and moisturize. No matter what type of skin you have, this three-step routine for the care of your skin is essential to counteract the daily effects of environment, stress, and the skin’s natural process of cell degeneration. It is the very minimum you must do to maintain a normal, healthy, youthful complexion. Even if you do nothing else for an existing skin problem, keeping this regimen every day can help to improve your condition, sometimes in a short amount of time.
The basic requirements for good skin include daily cleansing, nourishing, and moisturizing that is right for your complexion type. A total facial beauty program should feature daily skincare: cleansing, toning, moisturizing, weekly facial masks, healthy eating, rejuvenating body baths, exfoliation, and of course, exercise.
Following a seasonal skin care regimen is ideal for everyone, no matter what your skin condition, as our skin fluctuates with the seasons. In winter, cold temperatures and lack of humidity make moisturizing a must. In the heat of the summer months, the humidity is higher and you are more prone to exercise and sweat, so a moisturizer may not be necessary, but a sunscreen will – then you may notice more breakouts and need a detoxifying clay mask for example.
The most common skincare complaints include acne, eczema, psoriasis, premature wrinkles, sagging and age spots. Not all of these skin maladies will occur at the same time and not all skincare products will be necessary at all times. If you have combination skin, you may even need to ‘spot-treat’ – a moisturizer on your cheeks and a detoxifying mask on your forehead and nose, for example.
If you are a resourceful natural skincare advocate, you may already make some of your best skincare products at home. If you prefer to buy your skin care products rather than make them, it will benefit you greatly to be a knowledgeable consumer. Learn to distinguish the true natural products from the many pretenders on the market today.
Typically most skincare treatments are external. While they are vital to achieving a flawless complexion and an all-over healthy appearance, they alone are not sufficient to eliminate all skin problems completely. A topical product will alleviate only the surface issues of disease and aging, not the cause itself. For that you must also cleanse and nourish the body and mind internally – where all disorders begin. Internal skincare is equally if not more important that any external cream, especially when it comes to diet and key stress-reducing techniques like exercise, meditation and massage.
You can take years off your appearance by rejuvenating your skin if you are willing to follow a “whole-health” regimen. Make a routine of your daily skincare with proper cleansing, nourishing / toning and moisturizing as well as feeding your body nourishing, healthy foods and exercising. You will see the results for yourself through your improved complexion and an overall feeling of well-being.
Rosacea is a long lasting, non-scarring skin condition of the face that is often misdiagnosed as adult acne. It varies in severity and does not always worsen with time. Typically, you will experience inappropriate flushing that is not usually associated with sweating and/or persistent facial redness. It is common to have broken blood vessels (telangiectasias) on your cheeks. You may also experience bouts of inflammation that cause red papules (small bumps) or pustules. However, comedones (blackheads and whiteheads) are not part of rosacea.
About 50% of those with rosacea suffer eye involvement, including such conditions as conjunctivitis, blepharitis, dry gritty eyes, and recurrent sties. Nose enlargement (rhinophyma) is uncommon but mostly seen in men. It is only very rarely seen in women.
- Facial symptoms – burning and stinging
- Facial flushing, blushing evolving to persistant redness
- Inflammatory papules, pustules (pimples)
- Cheeks are not warm
- Telangectasiae, (blood vessel lines)
- Eye involvement
- Soft tissue hypertrophy or skin thickening (rhinophyma)
Who Gets Rosacea?
This condition is most commonly seen in those who have fair skin and is sometimes referred to as the “Curse of the Celts” or a “Peaches and Cream“ complexion.
Where Does Rosacea Occur On The Skin?
You will usually see rosacea around the central area of your face. It may occasionally be isolated to one patch.
When Does It Usually Start?
Onset usually occurs between 20-40 years of age.
How Does Rosacea Affect Us?
- Rosacea can be very embarrassing, flushing can be a source of social discomfort
- Many may feel that they are perceived as heavy drinkers
- Eyes can be gritty and uncomfortable
- Older men are frequently ashamed if their nose becomes bigger and knobbly
White spots on the skin, also known as hypopigmentation, is the loss of pigment in the skin resulting in greater whiteness than in the surrounding area. As melanin pigment is not produced in an area of the skin, the affected area losses color.
There are a number of things that may cause this spotting:
skin infections, lasers inappropriately applied, burns or blisters, or other forms of skin trauma may result in hypopigmentation and a loss of color in the skin
Albinism is a genetic disorder passed onto children from their parents. Melanin is not produced in people who have albinism resulting in a total absence of pigment in the skin, hair or eyes. People with albinism are at serious risk for sun damage and skin cancer and as such should be sure to wear sunblock at all times.
Vitiligo is a chronic skin disorder resulting in large, irregular discolored patches on the skin. Most of the affected areas lose pigment, though pigment may come back as melanin is reproduced in the affected areas.
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.
• 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.