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What happens if I overuse skin care products?

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.
Simple Skin Beauty: Every Woman's Guide to a Lifetime of Healthy, Gorgeous Skin

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Simple Skin Beauty: Every Woman's Guide to a Lifetime of Healthy, Gorgeous Skin

What if a leading dermatologist just happened to be your best friend and you could ask her anything? DR. ELLEN MARMUR, a world-renowned New York City dermatologist, answers all your questions with...

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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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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.