Daily Skin Care

Daily Skin Care

Daily Skin Care
Develop a daily skin care routine that cleanses, moisturizes and protects your skin. All skin types can benefit from a gentle, non-drying cleanser, an exfoliant and broad-spectrum protection from sun damage. Choose cleansers that will remove dirt and bacteria while moisturizing the skin with emollients and humectants. Even if you’re not prone to breakouts, a topical exfoliant such as a lotion with alpha hydroxy acid will remove sun damage and keep skin supple as you age. Finally, using a sunscreen that protects against UVA and UVB rays daily will prevent wrinkles and skin cancer.

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    When patients first come to me looking for help in boosting their skin health, I often ask them to bring in all their products so I can see what they use and where they may be going wrong. In most cases, they dump all their current supplies and start over. It’s highly likely that you have been overtreating your skin with multiple products, many of which could be harsh and exacerbating—rather than relieving—irritation and inflammation that can lead to breakouts and other skin conditions. I also look to see that their products are noncomedogenic. If you see the term oil-free on a label, you’re safe.

    I recommend doing the same here and starting fresh. Just the thought of going out and buying a few items to replace your old ones has a psychological plus to it. And you don’t need to go further than your local drug store to pick up the following: a gentle cleanser you can use every day, and two good moisturizers, one with sunscreen for daytime use and another for nighttime use. Your daytime moisturizer can be extra special with antioxidants and your nightly cream can include an over-the-counter retinol product if you so choose.

    If you have acne, get yourself an anti-acne formula as well, such as benzoyl peroxide, and while you’re at it, pick up any kind of gentle exfoliator you want. It can be a salicylic acid toner or a fruit-enzyme-based formula with jojoba beads. The bottom line is this: Don’t overdo it! Keep it simple. I see too many women who overtreat and over scrub their faces clean to the point that they defeat the purpose. Instead of boosting their natural glow and cell turnover, they end up causing irritation and inflammation. They trigger a cascade of localized stress-response events that lead to dryness and breakouts.

    From The Mind-Beauty Connection: 9 Days to Less Stress, Gorgeous Skin, and a Whole New You by Amy Wechsler.
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    Some people are genetically inclined toward sensitive skin, but we all have the potential to acquire it. Overdoing products that break down the stratum corneum cause irritant contact dermatitis and will trigger an immune response as part of the body's healing mechanism. For instance, mixing and matching different skin care products can cause serious inflammation. Stacking up a retinoid plus a glycolic acid cleanser and an alpha-hydroxy acid (AHA) moisturizer increases their strength threefold. All of those things are meant to dissolve something on the top part of your skin, so basically you are giving yourself a chemical peel every night. Even if you use over-the-counter-strength lotions and cleansers, piling on several of them could leave you with a rash rather than the glowing complexion you are trying to acquire. The main objective of your daily regimen is to maintain the protective surface of your skin. If you use too many acids and harsh products, you erode that layer and expose yourself to infections and strip the stratum corneum of moisture. Again, you have to read your skin, be careful, and be sensible about what you apply on top of it.
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    Marketing and perception are very powerful forces. A fascinating Duke University study published in 2008 in The Journal of the American Medical Association found that people believed that a more expensive placebo pill actually worked better just because it cost more. Spending more money somehow convinces many people that something (in this case a drug) works better. If that belief combined with the enjoyment of applying an expensive, more luxurious lotion or sunscreen makes you more inclined to use it with consistency, the placebo effect works wonders.

    Logically, however, consider that your three fundamental products all include similar common ingredients (perhaps in slightly varying concentrations). It just doesn't make rational sense to spend more money on them. Cleansers, sunscreens, and basic moisturizers contain about the same kinds of surfactants, humectants, and moisturizing emollients. These products all coat the top of the skin and affect it superficially. And many of the big cosmetics manufacturers (the names you see all over the drugstore aisles) are the same ones that make the prestige beauty lines. All the scientific bells and whistles that increase the cost of a product -- tiny nanoparticles that might be able to penetrate further than the surface, a truly stabilized form of an antioxidant such as vitamin C or green tea, or retinoids that would actually break through to the dermis -- don't matter so much (from a medical standpoint) for a cleanser, sunscreen, or simple moisturizer. But the fact is that the most effective antiaging product on the market is a good sunblock, and that doesn't have to be expensive at all. Honestly, the best, strongest sun protection products can be purchased at the drugstore. The bottom line: it's all a matter of personal preference. If you want to splurge on basics, go ahead, but it's simply not necessary.
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    Coconut oil, made from the dried fruit of the coconut palm tree, can be used on your skin in the following ways:
    • Instead of reaching for that makeup remover, use a cotton ball to rub coconut oil over your mascara and eyeliner for an easy, natural solution. (It even works on waterproof makeup.)
    • If you have dry or combination skin, make coconut oil part of your nightly routine by massaging a dime-sized amount over your face and neck (circular motions are best), then washing off the excess with your favorite facial cleanser.
    • For a great natural scrub, mix one part melted coconut oil with two parts brown sugar to use as an alternative to expensive exfoliators.
    • Coconut oil can be a great substitute for your favorite hand and body lotion. After showering or washing your hands, apply small amounts of coconut oil anywhere on your skin where a little moisturizing pick-me-up is needed.
    Trinity Health recognizes that people seek medical information on a variety of topics for a variety of reasons. Trinity Health does not condone or support all practices covered in this site. As a Catholic health care organization, Trinity Health acts in accordance with the Catholic tradition.
     
    Please note, the information contained on this website is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Always seek the advice of a qualified health care provider if you have questions regarding your medical condition or before starting any new treatment. In the event of a medical emergency always call 911 or proceed to your nearest emergency care facility.
     
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    The Fraxel Re:Store Laser is a resurfacing laser that works on skin types ranging from the lightest of the light to the darkest of the dark and helps with deeper pigmentation issues, including acne. People are usually able to return to work the next day, which is incredible considering that it can diminish the signs of crow's-feet, age spots, melasma, and precancerous lesions.
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    Kapha individuals tend to have naturally beautiful skin that ages slowly. Their skin tends to be plump and full of moisture. However, out of balance, Kapha skin tends to accumulate more toxins that predispose them to large pores, skin growths, skin eruptions, and a grayish film. The main focus for Kapha skin types should be removing toxins.

    Kapha skin types should favor spicy foods. The spicy food helps to stimulate their digestion and since Kapha individuals have the slowest metabolism, they need all the extra heat their food has to offer.

    Kapha skin needs herbs that help boost metabolism to remove toxins from their body and help their skin look clearer and more vibrant. Kapha individuals should add black pepper and garlic to their meals. They should also take the supplement guggul, which helps remove toxins by regulating fat metabolism throughout the body. Start guggul at doses of 75-150 mg a day. However, don't take guggul if you are at higher risk of estrogen-sensitive cancers or are taking estrogen supplements. Also, if you are undergoing treatment or chemotherapy for cancer, discuss taking guggul or other supplements with your physician first.

    Kapha skin types should avoid all heavy, oily foods because their skin already tends to be oily and their digestion slow.

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    Milk is a super soother for chapping, windburn, sunburn, eczema, and other skin irritations. It contains proteins (whey and casein), fat, amino acids, lactic acid, and vitamins A and D, all of which calm dry, upset skin. Milk’s lactic acid, in particular, weakens the glue that lets dead, ready-to-be-shed cells stick to the skin’s surface, making it look dull and dry.

    You can apply compresses dipped in cool whole milk for irritations like sunburn and eczema. Be sure to use whole milk; skim won’t do because it doesn’t contain fat, one of milk’s most soothing components. If compresses aren’t practical or you want a full-body effect, a milk bath will give you some relief. Try this tonight as part of your unwitching hour before bed: Add two to four cups to a warm (not hot) tub and soak for twenty minutes. You can use powdered whole milk, too. Sprinkle the amount of powder needed to make a quart of milk under the faucet as the water flows out. After your twenty-minute soak, give your body a gentle neck-to-toe scrubdown with a bath brush, loofah, or washcloth. This will slough off those dead cells, leaving skin smoother and softer. Apply moisturizer while your skin is still damp after you get out.

    If you don’t want to pour milk from your kitchen into the tub, you can purchase products that contain similar milk-based ingredients for the same effect. For instance, Fresh Milk Formula Bath Foam contains milk as well as shea butter and glycerine. But if your skin is very irritated or totally winter-whipped, try the real thing. It should leave your whole body feeling creamy.

    From The Mind-Beauty Connection: 9 Days to Less Stress, Gorgeous Skin, and a Whole New You by Amy Wechsler.

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    Use of a cleansing agent that contains a buffered glycolic acid or other alpha hydroxy acid (AHA) is a great way to keep epidermal cells lying tightly upon each other and skin glowing.

    As for hydration, if you have parched, irritated skin, applying an acidic AHA product is not an option until you have soothed and settled with a "bland" moisturizing cream. After you've dealt with the healing phase, go into preventative mode and apply an "active" moisturizer, one chockfull of AHAs to help prevent dehydration, remove scale and maintain the acid mantle, an imperceptible thin viscous fluid that maintains and protects the overall health of skin and hair.
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    Lecithin, a phospholipid found in the membranes of plant and animal cells, this compound is used as an emollient and water-binding agent in cosmetic preparations.
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    For some people, a mask is a useful product for exfoliation or for brightening the skin. To find the mask that’s right for you, follow the guidelines below:

    • For dry skin, use a non-drying mask with a creamy consistency that contains oils, humectants, and essential fatty acids to hydrate the skin and increase cellular renewal.
    • For oily skin, use an oil-free mask that hardens and delivers a tightening, oil-absorbing effect to reduce the appearance of enlarged pores. 
    • For normal skin, use a combination clay/creamy mask to absorb excess sebum, hydrate and exfoliate the skin, and help in maintaining healthy skin tone.