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Natural Cures for Acne

Acne leaves deep emotional wounds on a person that go beyond the physical blemishes and scars seen on the skin. The condition can make a person feel depressed, withdrawn and anxious about social situations. People suffering with acne may lack self-confidence, and severe acne is both physically, and mentally painful to deal with. Creams, lotions and other potions on the market may only aggravate the skin because of the harsh ingredients contained in these products. Homeopathic remedies and other natural cures may help clear up blemishes by treating the root cause of the problem. Natural treatments are gentle on the skin, and they contain ingredients from nature, rather than a soup of irritating chemicals.

Diet

The foods you eat have a direct impact on the condition of your skin. Foods with excess sugars and additives affect all body systems because they put a burden on elimination organs such as the liver and kidneys. Some people may break out after eating dairy products, drinking soda or eating junk foods. These organs work hard to flush out excess sugar, waste and other toxins, but too much sugar can make these organs less efficient.

It’s vital to keep your organs healthy by drinking 8 to 10 glasses of pure water each day. Water helps keep the skin stay healthy by hydrating it on the inside, and flushing toxins out of the body quickly. Add slices of limes or lemon to your water to enhance the flavor. Avoid drinking so-called vitamin enhanced waters because many of these products actually contain sugar and more than 100 calories.

Certain nutrients such as vitamin C, A, and zinc can help prevent acne and encourage healthy skin. Raw foods such as carrots, broccoli, lentils, beets and other fruits and vegetables contain ample amounts of these nutrients along with a long list of other vitamins and minerals. Eat lean meats such as turkey and chicken and eat plenty of salads with dark leafy green lettuce such as kale or spinach. Spinach contains high amounts of vitamins A and C along with plenty of minerals. Prepare spinach salads with tomatoes and chopped green peppers in your diet. Both tomatoes and green peppers are high in vitamin C. Vitamin C has a dramatic healing effect on the skin because it calms the skin and reduces inflammation.

Foods that contain omega-3 fatty acids can also help eliminate acne because healthy fats calm inflammation also. Salmon is high in healthy fats along with vitamins A, D and other nutrients. Nuts such as sunflower seeds, almonds, walnuts and peanuts also contain omega-3 fats. Omega-3 fats can also be found in avocados, cod liver oil and olive oil. Eggs are good sources of protein, vitamins and omega-3 fats.

The body needs protein to build healthy hair, skin and nails. Lean meats such as chicken, turkey and buffalo contain complete proteins. However, if you are a vegan you’ll need to eat a variety of plant proteins in order to get everything you need. Spirulina is a sea vegetable that contains high amounts of protein, and beans are also a good source of protein.

Food as Medicine

Food-based home remedies can help keep acne at bay by soothing and healing the skin on the outside. Freshly squeezed raw lemon and lime juice contains acids that remove dead skin cells. Applying a thin layer of this juice to the skin once or twice per week may prevent new breakouts by keeping the pores clear. You can also combine other ingredients in your pantry to create nutrient-dense facial masks. Masks with raw honey, oatmeal, orange peels and yogurt can hydrate and help keep the skin clear of acne. Combine 2 tbsp. of raw honey in a bowl with 2 tbsp. of oatmeal and 1 tbsp. orange peels. Leave this mask on the skin for thirty minutes and wash your face with a mild cleanser. You can repeat this process once or twice weekly and see how your skin reacts.

Other Natural Treatments

Other natural treatments found within your kitchen or bathroom can also have a positive effect on acne. Create a facial mask with 5 crushed aspirins and 2 tbsp. of pure Aloe Vera gel. Use steam to open up your pores before applying one of these masks. Aloe Vera with 1 tbsp. of sea salt can be used as a gentle exfoliator for acne prone skin.

Tips

Eating healthy, exercising and using home remedies can greatly impact the condition of your skin and keep breakouts away. It’s also important to get 8 or more hours of sleep each night and change your pillow case every other day since oil can transfer on to your pillow case. Avoid touching your face and wash your hands often. Find a mild cleanser to wash your skin with twice each day and never go to bed with your makeup on. Pull your hair back to keep the hair off your face. Mineral and water-based makeup is better for acne prone skin. Find healthy ways to manage stress by taking a yoga class or finding time to relax.

Bastyr Center for Natural Health: Nutritional Supplements in the Treatment of Acne

University of Maryland Medical Center: Acne

Natural News: Cure Acne at Home with Five Lesser Known Home Remedies

Fox News: Natural Cures for Gout, Cystic Acne and Toenail Fungus

Mayo Clinic: Acne-Lifestyle and Home Remedies

Medline Plus: Acne

Fitness Magazine: 9 Facts You Need to Know to Treat Adult Acne

Organic Lifestyle Magazine: Natural Remedies for Acne

Oprah Magazine: How Can I Get Rid of Acne? 

Prevention Magazine: Clear Skin Solutions

 

 

The Skin You're In During Winter

Your skin - a protective barrier from the outside world - forms your first line of defense against microorganism. The skin consists of three layers. The outer layer, the epidermis, keeps vital fluids within the body and keeps bacteria out. Immediately below The epidermis is the dermis, the skin layer rich in blood vessels, nerves, connective tissue, oil glands and hair follicles. Below the dermis lie the subcutaneous or fatty layer of skin, which keeps you insulated from bone-chilling gusts.

Cold winter air strips skin of two health necessities - moisture and sebum (skin's natural oils) - leaving skin tight, blotchy and dry, accentuating even the finest lines. During warmer times of the year, perspiration distributes the skin's natural oils, keeping it moisturized and refreshed. The oil is secreted from sebaceous glands in the dermis. In the colder months, however, when we run from aching cold snowball fights to the warmth of a fireplace, your skin struggles to adjust to these extremes. When cold weather skin becomes distressed, take these steps to ease and protect it from the elements:

Wash with lukewarm water, not hot. Hot water further strips skin of its natural oils. Apply a body oil immediately after showering and before toweling off to retain some moisture. Avoid deodorant soaps with harsh detergents that strip skin of natural oils.

Use only natural, gentle cleansers. During the winter, skin often benefits from cleansers filled with lubricating oils.

Use a sponge or skin chamois to cleanse your skin. Don't scrub.

Protect your skin with a layer of sunscreen every day, regardless of the season, before venturing outdoors. Apply the sunscreen before moisturizing to keep the block as close to your skin as possible. It takes about 20 minutes for sunscreen's active ingredients to be absorbed into the skin, so apply it to your skin well before you plan on heading outdoors.

The skin on your face is important, but don't neglect the rest of your body. Skin on hands, legs and feet can chap, flake and crack in the winter without proper care and conditioning. Check out the products your skin might need in our products section, or email us with a question, or call us.

Hyperpigmentation

Hyperpigmentation is rarely considered a serious medical condition, but for millions of women and men, who have brown blotches on their faces and bodies, it can be emotionally devastating. Responding to this cosmetic crisis, scientists have picked up the pace in research and development and are quickly creating new products and innovative delivery systems to better manage this condition.

Hyperpigmentation can be caused by many things: hormonal changes associated with pregnancy, birth control pills and hormone replacement therapies; wounds such as abrasions and acne; overexposure to ultraviolet radiation; vitamin A deficiencies and other nutritional factors, starvation diets, for instance, may produce hyperpigmentation on the face; or a combination of these factors. Therefore, formulating products that effectively treats the problem is difficult.

There are no magic bullets to cute it. However, there are multi-tiered skin treatment programs that can help you control it more effectively. One of the most important aspects of these plans is a home care regimen using a pigment control serum like Doctor's Dermatologic Formula, Fade Gel 2 with 20% Kojic, 2% Hydroquinone, and 10% Alpha Hydroxy Acid, and a full spectrum sunscreen formulated with a generous amounts of antioxidants like MD Formulation's Total Protector 30, SPF30. It is important to use the proper amount of sunscreen, and you need to reapply the sunscreen every 30 minutes if you are in direct sunlight.

To support your home care program your esthetician can also provide various peels as well as microdermabrasion to help slough off surface skin and stimulate the growth of new healthy skin.

What is a Free Radical?

Free radicals are highly reactive and unstable molecules missing an electron. When you burn food for energy, breathe smog or have a stressful event in your life, you split a pair of stable oxygen molecules and create single oxygen electrons. In order to stabilize, or "pair up", these free radicals grab on to healthy cells and "steal" an electron. What results is another unstable molecule or another free radical is created, and a chain reaction begins. Thus, free radicals have the potential to create a tremendous amount of cellular damage.

What is an Anti-Oxidant?

Anti-oxidants are an important part of the body's cell-protection system. This is due to their ability to neutralize free radicals. The billions of cells in our body are continually being exposed to these free radicals. Many scientists now believe that this cellular damage, along with other factors, may lead to the development of a number of chronic diseases. The most popular anti-oxidants are vitamins A, C and E. Science now believes we need a "complex" of anti-oxidants to truly neutralize free radical damage. It is similar to a "hot potato" where the free radical is handed down from one anti-oxidant to another, until it is finally neutralized.

We carry some wonderful products that effectively deal with free radicals. Check the product section and look for the DDF Moisturizer C3, the MD Formulation Vit-A-Plus product line, and the Oxygen Boosting Complex.

New Regulations on Suntan Lotions

The term "sunblock" will no longer be allowed.

"Chemical-Free" or "Natural" must be removed along with "Non-Chemical". The words "Physical" or "Organic" will apply.

"All day protection" and "extended wear" claims must be removed.

"PABA Free" will read "Amionobenzoic Acid (PABA) Free".

SPF's above 30 will be "SPF 30 or 30 Plus".

"Water-proof" claims will no longer be permitted. It will read "water resistant", "water/sweat resistant" or "water/perspiration resistant". This will apply only if the product retains its original SPF value after 40 minutes of water immersion.

"Very water resistant" will be allowed after 80 minutes of activity and full SPF value is present.

Sun tanning preparations that do not contain a sunscreen ingredient must display a warning - "this product does not contain a sunscreen."

Winter Itch

"Winter itch" starts with dry, chapped hands that later become red, scaly, inflamed patches. The number of things that can irritate the skin are almost limitless, ranging from overexposure to water, soaps, detergents, solvents, chemicals, rubber gloves, and ingredients in skin and personal care products.

Once the skin becomes red and dry, even water can cause irritation. It is often very difficult to identify the initial substance that causes irritability. Overly sensitive skin can be inherited. People with over sensitive skin often have a history of hay fever, and a combination of food allergies and other skin conditions called atopic dermatitis or eczema. For these people, their skin can turn red and itch after contact with many substances that might not bother other people.

"Winter Itch" is a disorder that occurs on the legs, arms and torso. The skin is very dry and looks cracked and scaly. It occurs with people who have a tendency toward dry skin, and this condition can be exacerbated during the winter months. Itching is often moderate, and infection can occur with prolonged scratching.

People often ask if this condition is emotionally based. The answer is "yes" and "no." Emotional stress can play a role in this skin condition, but it is seldom the only cause. Stress can lead to scratching, rubbing, or excessive hand washing. These behaviors can intensify "winter itch."

Uncovering the cause of skin rashes is a very difficult process. Your esthetician or dermatologist must act like a detective in order to access the medical problem or allergy. Sometimes special tests are required to determine if a skin infection exists.

Regardless of the cause of the rash, below are ways to treat your skin now and in the future to lessen the chances of getting "winter itch", thus easing the discomfort:

Protect your hands against soaps, cleansers and other chemicals by wearing vinyl gloves during wet activities.

Avoid rubber gloves, since many people are sensitive to them.

Avoid hot water and use lukewarm water when bathing.

Restore moisture to the skin. By applying an enriched exfoliating crème.

Bath oils may be added to the bath, however, short showers are recommended if you are experiencing "winter itch."

Add essential fatty acid Omega 3 capsules to your diet, or eat more "fatty fish" like salmon, mackerel and tuna. Essential fatty acids with help moisturize your body from within.

These types of rashes can be stubborn, so remember; prevention is your best ally. If you know you are prone to experience "winter itch," dermatitis, or eczema, be sure to use a high quality body moisturizer regularly during the winter months.

The Skin And Stress Connection

New evidence has surfaced to further substantiates the mind body connection. Research done by Massachusetts General Hospital, in Boston, and the University of Pennsylvania, in Philadelphia have identified a key connection between nerve cells and Langerhans' cells which are responsible for triggering the immune response in skin.

In today's fast paced environment it is important to take time to relax. Below, you find some tips on how to alleviate stress and thus improve your skin.

Stop and assess your mental state by checking your breathing. Are you breathing at all? Are you holding your breath? Or, are you breathing rapidly? Is your body tense? Now that you are watching your breath, inhale slowly and deeply through your nose to the count of six, hold your breath to the count of three, and then exhale slowly through your mouth to the count of six. Repeat this breathing several time until you experience a sense of peace. Then let go and resume your normal breathing. Check your breathing several times a day, and if you find tension, repeat this breathing exercise.

Relax your face for one full minute. Gently touch and massage your temples, the point between your eye brows, and your jaw. Clear your mind of all your thoughts. Do the above breathing exercise.

Mentally scan your body from your feet to your head and find any tense areas. Breath into these areas and tell your body to let go and relax. Do one area at a time. Know that as you release your tension, your skin will respond, and your inner beauty will shine through.

Three Misconstrued Terms

Hypoallergenic - there is no industry standard for the term "hypoallergenic" nor does the FDA provide a definition, meaning that nay company can claim this term. There are however, some known common irritants like fragrance, many preservatives, certain yellow, red and orange dyes. Also, being natural does not make a product hypoallergenic. As you know, many people have hay fever and are allergic to natural pollens.

Collagen Enriched - many skin care companies would like you to believe that a collagen enriched product will bolster the connective collagen in the skin. Collagen, a large protein molecule, can only enter the skin through injection. Collagen, however is a very good moisturizer.

Oil - Free Moisturizing - oil free products use water-loving Humectant molecules to attract moisture from the atmosphere, whereas products formulated with animal, vegetable, mineral or synthetic oils form a thin film on the skin to seal moisture in. Some oil free formulas are a good idea for people prone to breakouts since they are less likely to clog pores, however, that does not make them blemish free.

Your Best Line of Defense

The sun is out and you must be diligent to take care of your skin. The latest thinking is that 80% of skin aging is due to sun exposure. UVA & UVB rays are just as damaging in winter as they are in summer. Even if you don't spend time outdoors, these rays penetrate glass and your daily routine of driving back and forth to work exposes you to pre mature skin aging as well as the risk of skin cancer. Look for a broad spectrum sunscreen that blocks UVA & UVB rays (specifically formulated for your skin type). Sunscreen ingredients such as Benzophenone-3 are absorbed into the skin while sun blocks such as zinc and titanium dioxide refract the sun's rays. Long sun exposure may require a combination of both. Remember, protection from the sun needs to be year around.

What is Botox?

Botox is an injection of the virus botulism, originally developing to treat eye twitches and facial tics. It temporarily paralyzes the tiny muscles that cause wrinkles to form on the forehead and around the eyes. It lasts about 4 months and can be very addictive as the face truly looks more relaxed and younger. Depending upon the skill of the surgeon the injections are slightly painful and leave little red pinpricks for a few days. The cost varies by doctor but averages about $500.00 - $700.00.

If this is something you are interested in, just ask one of our estheticians, and we can give you a referral.

The Three Most Misconstrued Terms

Hypoallergenic - there is no industry standard for the term "Hypoallergenic" nor does the FDA provide a definition, meaning that any company can claim this term. There are however, some known common irritants like fragrance, many preservatives, PABA, certain yellow, red and orange dyes. Caution: just because a product is natural does not make it hypoallergenic. As you know, many people are allergic to natural pollens.

Collagen - enriched - many skin care companies would like you to believe that a collagen enriched product will bolster the connective collagen in the skin. Collagen, a large protein molecule, can only enter the skin through injection. Collagen, however is a good moisturizer.

Oil - Free Moisturizing - oil-free products use water-loving Humectant molecules to attract moisture from the atmosphere, whereas products formulated with anima, vegetable, mineral or synthetic oils form a thin film on the skin to seal moisture in. Oil-free formulas are a good idea for anybody prone to breakouts since they are less likely to clog pores.

If you are still confused about these terms and how they work in our products, feel free to ask one of our estheticians. We will get the answer for you.

The Power Peel

The Power Peel, also called Micro-Dermabrasion, is a controlled treatment that can improve your skin tone and texture. The treatments are effective on all skin types. These treatments erase fine lines and wrinkles, brown spots, Melasma, and reduce the appearance of acne scars.

The Power Peel offers you a safe, economical and effective alternative to chemical peels and laser resurfacing.

There is no pain, no anesthesia, no recovery time, no missed work, and no known side effects.

It truly is revolutionary. To find out how you can benefit from a Power Peel.

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