How can Exfoliation improve my skin?
Generally speaking, exfoliation refers to any technique that removes cells from the skin surface, not only immediately “refreshing” the skin’s appearance but also stimulating cell renewal. The benefits are dramatic, and, when used with professional guidance, exfoliation can be used to treat a wide variety of skin problems – including acne, hyperpigmentation, premature aging and scarring to name a few.
The sun and my skin ... are they really such enemies?
It’s no exaggeration to say that the sun is potentially your skin’s worst enemy. In fact, skin cancer, largely caused by unprotected exposure to the sun’s damaging UV rays, is the most prevalent form of cancer in the world, affecting one in five people. And it’s on the rise – recent studies suggest that depletion of the earth’s ozone layer makes shielding the skin more important than ever.
Not a sun bather, you say? Well, unless you only go out at night, your skin is still bombarded on a daily basis. Driving to work. Walking the dog. Even sitting under indoor lighting. The bottom line – if the sun is in the sky, sun protection should be on your skin.
Why do some people breakout in their thirties and forties?
Stress and hormonal changes are the primary cause of the re-emergence of acne well after puberty. Recent studies indicate that 40 to 50 percent of adults between the ages of 20 and 40 are diagnosed with persistent, low-grade acne. Along with several lifestyle changes, including reducing stress and improving diet, there are several skin care products on the market designed to address these problems.
How do I prevent unbalanced pigmentation?
Pigmentation disorders are caused by a myriad of factors, which include sun damage, hormonal imbalance, and skin trauma or disease. Of all these causes, sun damage is both the most common, and the most easily prevented! Simply applying a sunscreen with a minimum SPF15 every day, and avoiding peak sun times around midday, will do a lot to prevent the sun damage that can make your skin’s pigments act up. SPF30 provides optimum daily sun protection.
Hormonal imbalance, a cause of pigmentation mostly affecting women, can occur during any time that the body’s natural hormone balance is disturbed. These triggers can include hormonal changes, such as those that happen during the menstrual cycle, menopause, prolonged stress, pregnancy or even when taking birth control pills. Unlike pigmentation related to trauma or sun damage, hormonally-induced hyperpigmentation generally disappears when balance is restored to the body, and it can be treated during the interim period with topical skin brighteners.
The pigmentation related to skin trauma (cuts, wounds, scrapes and the like) is difficult to prevent in the case of accidental damage to the skin. Picking at acne lesions is also, of course, a big no-no, and will only exacerbate the pigmentation associated with the wound healing.
What is sensitive skin, and do I have it?
No other skin condition is more misunderstood than sensitive skin. In fact, almost 90% of the population report having sensitive skin at one time or another! To understand whether you have sensitive skin, you first have to understand
what causes it.
Sensitive skin is a genetically-inherited condition that predominantly affects very fair-skinned individuals, usually of Northern European ancestry. Someone with truly sensitive skin is highly prone to blushing, has a very fine complexion and may experience bad hay fever, allergies or asthma.
What most people suffer from is in fact sensitized skin. Rather than a result of genetics, sensitized skin is a reflection of your environment, lifestyle and physiology. Pollution, stress, hormonal imbalance, cosmetic allergies, alcohol, a poor diet and over-exfoliation can all trigger the sensitized skin condition.
The good news is that sensitized skin can be treated. The bad news is that, left untreated, the skin’s response can actually result in permanent cellular damage, which can lead to premature aging.
How can I avoid trigger factors?
A few lifestyle modifications can usually solve most people’s skin sensitization. Maintaining the skin’s barrier function is vital, so remember to always apply your moisturiser after cleansing, and whenever your skin feels tight or dry – booster skin care treatments are the ideal addition to your skin care regimen to optimize the water level of your skin. Also, always avoid over-exfoliating your skin – remember, more exfoliation is not better! If you notice redness or tightness that lasts more than a few hours, you should discontinue the use of your exfoliant for a few days.
Sun protection is also critical because sensitized skin is even more vulnerable to UV damage. Lastly, avoiding trigger factors such as hot drinks, spicy foods. msg, alcohol, caffeine and cigarettes can help your skin recover and rebuild its normal resistance.
What is premature aging and how do I avoid it?
Far from natural! Now, we wouldn’t suggest for a minute that there’s anything wrong with growing old gracefully. The natural aging process is defined in our very genetics, resulting in the complex hormonal and \physical transformations that take place throughout life. Premature aging refers to the unnatural acceleration of the natural aging process, primarily due to damage from sun exposure and an unhealthy lifestyle. While the natural aging process cannot be slowed, most people who exhibit signs of aging are actually suffering from premature aging. Sound far-fetched? Consider this: not only are over 99% of wrinkles caused by sun exposure, but premature aging can add up to twenty years to your appearance!
Taking care of your skin early on can help your skin stay healthy well into your golden years. It’s an investment that only takes minutes a day!
Avoiding unprotected sun exposure is the most important measure you can take to protect your skin. General lifestyle factors are also important – a diet too rich in highly-processed foods and alcohol, and lacking in fresh fruits, vegetables and whole foods, can have a significant impact on the health of the skin.
Topical vitamins ... do they work?
As far as your body is concerned, your skin is the last in line when it comes to getting its share of nutrients. Over time, fewer of your ingested vitamins ever make it to the skin because they are diverted to the internal organs, leaving the skin starved. Applying potent vitamin complexes topically can make up for this lack of nourishment, helping to address the signs of premature aging on the cellular level and neutralize dangerous free radical activity.
What vitamins are most effective?